Clean Slate

Man, things have been going great for me lately. Does that mean my life is stress-free? Absolutely not! Quite the opposite, in fact. Schoolwork is piling up, and stress is definitely occurring, but I’m knocking things off the pile quickly enough that the stress is kept manageable. Somehow, for the first time in my entire life, I’m able to balance my work appropriately- while also maintaining enough free time to be particularly social at least once a day or so! Kind of sidenote: I realized I need more social time than I thought I did, and that helps keep me from spiraling into a more unstable mental state.

Which is a beautiful segue into our next paragraph! Not the spiraling part, necessarily- the social time part. Growing up, I was very shy. At some point, “shy” didn’t describe it so much as “anxious” did, and I blamed it on the chemicals in my brain. Another sidenote: learning about stuff like that took weights off my shoulders that I’d been carrying around for years thinking I was just lazy or horrible or something, so yeah, mental health awareness is important!

At some point in my youth, it entered my brain that I must be what is known as an introvert, and therefore, I didn’t like talking to people or spending too much time being social. Now, I’m not sure if someone remarked to me that I was an introvert and it just stuck, or if I just read those words once and decided it from there, but either way, it took root in my brain and became an indisputable fact of life.

Throughout elementary and middle school, several more indisputable facts of life sprung into existence. Example: I can’t draw. I remember once, in maybe fourth grade or so, we had to draw a horse for some class. Mine was so horrible that my classmates literally to this day have not forgotten it and every time I put a pencil to paper after that someone near me would snicker about the horse. I mean, don’t get me wrong- I knew it was bad too, so it didn’t bother me that much. It was just a thing. Based off a couple drawings made with absolutely zero art instruction background, but a thing nonetheless.

Another example: I’m bad at running. I was a super slow runner, and everyone knew it. Granted, I wasn’t the only one in the class, but still- there was a group of top-notch runners, and a group of definitely-not-runners, and everyone else fell in the middle as “mediocre”. I was in the group on the bottom of the totem pole, but I just shrugged my shoulders and wished for the couple laps to be over with faster because it was embarrassing. You know that feeling when you’re running in a dream and it feels like you’re running through Jell-O, urging your legs to move faster but they physically can’t even though they’re going way slower than they should be? That was me, trying to sprint, on a weekly basis.

See also: I can’t sing. Oh, but I wanted to, so, so badly. I was so jealous of people that could sing. Alas, my fate had already been decided: despite that I had no vocal training and no one with any sort of authority on the matter had told me that I was a hopeless case, it entered the world anyway, and the whole school knew singing was not my strong suit. Including me.

These were facts, but I will say, one started crashing down even before I left that school. When we were going into the 8th grade, our last year there, we got a new gym coach. The last one was probably a lovely lady, though my view of her at the time was a bit skewed. She had also accepted the unchangeable fact that I was not particularly athletic, and especially could not run. This didn’t really help my view on the matter, you know? Not that I thought there was an issue at the time. I just thought that’s the way I was.

But in the 8th grade, we got a new coach, and that sort of allowed us a clean slate. He was a parent at the (small) school, so he knew most of us as people and knew who the “elite” athletes were, but he took a new approach to it anyway. At that time, we were also beginning to run longer distances than, you know, a singular lap around the soccer field- six laps made a mile, and we ran that alllllll the time. I don’t exactly remember any inciting incidents here, and I really wish I did. At some point, Coach remarked to me about my running ability, to which I’m sure I laughed heartily. He gave me some pointers- “put your shoulders back, and pretend you’re holding two crackers between your fingers that you don’t want to break”- and honestly? I don’t think it was the pointers so much as the confidence boost, but my mile time started to go down. It got good- like, pretty good. The best runners in our class were pulling off around seven-minute miles, but mine was sitting pretty solid at eight and a half. Gym and running the mile became one of my favorite parts of school, instead of the thing I dreaded. People started viewing me not as a permanently slow runner, but as someone who regularly did well on the mile. Finally, Coach suggested to me probably one of the most liberating things I’ve ever done- join the track team.

I was only part of the track team for a couple races, and believe you me, the people I was competing against were way better than me. But you want to know what I did? You want to know what happened when I got out on that track?

I ran a 7:32 mile, the best mile time I’ve ever run to this day.

Was I working out more than in the past? Not at all. Was it because my form improved? Maybe a tiny bit, but I don’t think that’s the main thing. Was it simply because I was growing and my body was capable of running more than I was in the fifth grade? Well, possibly, but I wasn’t running that far. No, I had just learned that sometimes, the bars we find ourselves trapped behind are our own doing, and I had unintentionally confined myself to a label that didn’t actually define me. I graduated 8th grade feeling very proud of myself, and was thinking of joining the cross country team in high school. Turns out sprinting is still not my game- though it absolutely could be if I worked at it enough, I just don’t have the particular desire to do that at this moment in time- but endurance running is much more up my alley and I enjoy it.

Now, I didn’t end up doing cross country, because I was worried my Pre-AP classes would overwhelm me enough. Looking back, that was probably a good call- I didn’t have great schoolwork management skills in high school, and needed those four years to make mistakes and learn time management while the stakes were still low(ish). High school in general made everything crazy and put a stop to my self-discovery thing. Maybe I would’ve questioned those other “facts” of life had I not been so preoccupied on making friends and looking cool. Ugh, I’m literally cringing writing this right now. Nope nope, we’re moving on now. Paragraph change, stat!

I’ve written twice now about that art class I’m in this semester, and frankly, I think my other classes are starting to get a little hurt at all the attention Design I is receiving, but I have to mention it at least once more. One recurring assignment we have in this class is to sketch, typically to recreate a sketch he gives us. The very first one was two sketches, actually, and one was a simple outline of Cindy Bear (Yogi Bear’s girlfriend, you know the one?). The other one was a Da Vinci sketch, and while I made it quite clear in my last post that this one was not exactly the best in the class, I was proud of it regardless! I think it helped that I did Cindy first, and since she was just lines with no shading or cross-hatching or anything fancy, she went really well. With zero drawing instruction, essentially tossed to the wolves (don’t worry, our sketches aren’t graded for accuracy so much as effort and these might not be graded period!), I discovered that not only was copying Cindy with nothing but my eye actually super fun and stress-relieving, but something in me kind of clicked and I was able to discern the angles necessary to make her look right. I remember stopping halfway through and just observing my own work, thinking, hey… I might have sort of an eye for this?

That was a week ago, at my family’s annual Labor Day lake weekend. Funnily enough, that weekend I also caught some sun and it gave me a little bit of color- previously, myself and everyone who knows me has always said, “oh, I don’t tan, I just burn”. But this time I didn’t? And then I drew a really good drawing, or at least, way better than I expected? And it got me to thinking.

What else am I using to confine myself?

I’ve changed a lot since I was younger, and college especially is the time to break all those chains and rediscover who I am. Previously, I’ve held onto everything and refused to delete, and throw away, or forget. I’m still not super delete-happy; I mean, my phone currently has over 15 gigs of saved text messages. But some of my posts from this summer highlight just how far I’ve come in that regard, and being this new, more genuine me is liberating. I’m discovering that I’m actually way more of a Type B person than I thought I was. I think acting Type A was kind of draining me, but for some reason, I thought it was who I was meant to be. But even though I’m most likely a mix of the two, I’m definitely much more Type B than I thought I was growing up. It’s honestly, 100% been the best discovery- I feel like I can breathe easier.

I’m also toying with the thought that maybe I’m not quite as introverted as I always believed I was. I have this inner desire to talk to people more- random people, that I encounter in my day-to-day life. A college campus is a great place to start that. I maintain that college interactions are my favorite interactions, and usually the funniest. It helps that we usually have common enemies- midterms, opposing football teams, rain.

I can’t wait to fully chip away all the inaccurate layers of myself to reveal the true me, waiting underneath. I think I’ve been trying to figure out a way to get to her for a while now, but haven’t been going about it the right way. This time, though, I finally understand what’s going on, and I’ve suspended any and all assumptions of reality. Like physics, I’ve assigned a set of rules to my reality, but you know what happens when one of the laws of physics is broken? It means our understanding of reality is wrong, and we must tentatively start from a square one to reconfirm all the things we thought we knew to find the inaccuracy.

That’s what I’m doing right now. I’m eating moderately spicy food and I’m running a half marathon in January and I’m really enjoying drawing in my sketchbook despite the fact that I’m literally procrastinating doing that right now by writing this post. I can cook better than I thought I could, my singing voice isn’t totally crap, and I’m finally trying Dungeons and Dragons on Saturday, which I’d previously put off for ages. I’m open to trying new things, to making plans I normally would’ve said no to, to seeing movies by myself (soon!), to giving up on things that are truly not working and dragging me down without feeling bad about it. I’m being nicer to myself, I’m not using old rhetoric to describe what I want to do in life (I’m in the process of figuring that out, but I’m not stressing about it), to just going for it, jumping into doing things despite the fear of being laughed at or being horrible or whatever.

I am slowly becoming the happiest version of myself, and that is who I’m meant to be.

 

-aam

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An Open Letter To That Art Class That Actually Isn’t So Bad

Dear Design I,

Well, you might have seen that one post I wrote that dragged you kind of hard. To be fair, class hadn’t yet started; I was basing my judgments entirely off the syllabus and materials list that, frankly, stressed me out way more than I needed to be in the days leading to class. But I digress!

Turns out, you don’t entirely suck. You can be difficult at times- shoutout to the time I spent an entire day trying to recreate famous sketches with zero drawing experience and my Da Vinci was torn to shreds (metaphorically!) in front of everyone- BUT! But but but. But you’re also proving to be kind of fun. I sat on the floor in my living room yesterday, listening to my one of my roommates tell a story while I used my itty bitty scissors to snip snip away at some thick black paper. Eventually my other roommates were curious as to what I was doing, since they were stuck skimming aesthetically atrocious O-Chem PowerPoints and I was essentially plopped on the floor doing arts and crafts. By the time I finished the assignment and got ready to leave, everyone wanted to see it and I was treated to a small chorus of “oh it looks great!! That looks so fun!!!”

This isn’t relevant in any way, but I just want to add here that my new project is to collage a Smurf! You heard me! I get to snip snip some more!

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Anyway, I’m starting to relax a bit more around my classmates. We spent a decent bit of class time yesterday laughing while cutting up magazines- one of them is making his Smurf ENTIRELY OUT OF PICTURES OF HUMAN TEETH and it’s UTTERLY TERRIFYING but hilarious at the same time! Turns out I like classes where I can stand up while I work, especially when it’s almost three hours long.

I still don’t have all the materials, and I’m a little worried that I only have a stable grip on this class for a brief time- that is to say, I’m worried I’ll drop the ball at some point and never recover. But things are well for now, and while at first it seemed like everyone in this class was a professional artist or something, our walls are all starting to drop and we’re realizing that most of us are actually not so hopelessly behind as we individually thought we were.

Yep- things are looking up, despite my mildly pessimistic post from a couple weeks ago. I mean, heck, it may not have been the best, but I did draw a Da Vinci sketch! And it was fairly recognizable! That’s a win in my book! Wanna know how I did it?

All I had to do was break down the drawing into individual lines! It still seemed intimidating that way, but once I started tackling them one by one, it didn’t seem so scary anymore.

 

Turns out lines aren’t so hard after all.

 

-aam

Wranting Wednesday: Drake & Josh Are Saving My Semester

Okay first of all, I know I’ve only had one post in the past several weeks that was not either a rant or an open letter and I promise one of these years I’ll write more! Maybe by 2020? That seems like a reasonable goal.

I’m kinda feeling a positive rant today, anyone else? Lil’ bit of optimism to boost us out of that mid-afternoon hump day slump? Yay! Let’s do it!

For a little context: I’ve been yearning to watch Drake & Josh for aaaaaaages. Like, literal years. They took it off Netflix in, like, 2014, and I’ve been pining for it back ever since. I have a lot of good memories associated with that show! My older cousin-sister and I are 11 years apart, but we used to watch that show together when she was in college because DRAKE & JOSH BRIDGE ALL AGE GAPS.

Legitimately though, we used to know sooooo many quotes from the show. There’s a couple episodes I could probably recite to you by heart.

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^^^this is the most predominant one^^^

BUT THEY WEREN’T ON NETFLIX so for years I suffered but I dealt.

BUT FRIENDS, YESTERDAY WAS THE DAY THAT THE CLOUDS PARTED AND THE SUN SHONE THROUGH! Because yesterday, I registered for a Spotify Premium account FOR STUDENTS. Which, if you don’t know, is the same thing as Spotify Premium, but it’s half the price and ALSO comes with HULU AND SHOWTIME. Honestly, I didn’t expect that to be a big deal at first; I barely watch any TV as it is, and I’m a little too busy to be introducing new distractions to myself like that.

Though yesterday, I was in dire need of a study break, and Hulu wanted me to activate my new account, and since it was a sort of new toy, I wanted to play. So I scrolled aimlessly, taking in all that they had to offer, not expecting to use it for anything more than The Handmaid’s Tale. LO AND BEHOLD, WHAT DID I FIND GRINNING BACK AT ME FROM THE SCREEN???

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I LITERALLY GASPED ALOUD. THIS WAS A MONUMENTAL OCCASION. IT STILL IS. THIS WEEK IS A BEAUTIFUL WEEK BECAUSE THIS WAS THE WEEK I GAINED ACCESS TO DRAKE & JOSH.

This entire post was literally just appreciation for the fact that I can now watch the GREATEST TV SHOW EVER MADE. I actually texted the aforementioned cousin-sister yesterday that Drake & Josh is going to get me through the semester, and I gotta say, so far it’s working.

I hope you all encounter a small joy like this sometime soon.

Pip pip da doodly doo!

 

-aam

An Open Letter To My Idiot Past Self

WHY ARE YOU LIKE THIS. DON’T DO ALL THOSE THINGS. NO. STOP IT.

You are THE WORST; why did you set me up for such failure like this?!

Listen. I don’t think you’ll receive this letter in time to correct your mistake, because time travel isn’t yet a thing (as far as I know), but maybe someone else will intercept this and it can prevent them from doing the same thing: DON’T WAIT UNTIL CLASSES HAVE STARTED TO ORDER YOUR TEXTBOOKS HOLY CRAP.

It’s just a horrible idea! This has been an IMMENSELY STRESSFUL week and ya know what??? It probably wouldn’t have been HALF as bad if I had gotten my dang books ahead of time! Or even just earlier this week! I literally bought half of them this morning! The other half are in transit right now and I won’t get them until the end of next week, at the earliest! Not all professors are super accommodating to that! Why did I do this to myself?!

To be fair, Past Self, I’m being kind of harsh to you right now because the stress is very fresh. Give it a week, or two, or twelve, and I’ll chill out a bit and stop yelling at you. I realized when I started writing this that yelling at you isn’t going to solve anything, though. If anything, it’ll only make it worse, because, like… you are me, after all.

Being overly critical of a past version of ourselves isn’t going to make the current one feel any better.

Awww. I kind of want to wrap you up in a hug now, because I know you were only doing what you thought was best. But only about 90% of me. The other 10% still wants to yell at you. We’ll get there, we’ll get there.

There’s plenty I’m proud of you for, also… maybe I should focus on telling you that instead. But that’s a letter for another time.

Keep on rockin, me.

 

-aam

Wranting Wednesday: If You Send Me One More Email, So Help Me…

They’re stressing me out and I’m kind of mad about it.

Listen, I spent half my high school career getting spammed with college recruitment emails. When I graduated high school and actually entered college (one that never sent me emails- take notes, other schools), I saw the thousands of college emails slowly begin to drop off, and it was an absolutely ecstatic time.

Just for scale, I’ve already talked about how I deleted thousands upon thousands of old emails this summer: most of those were colleges who were trying to recruit me in high school. They’re relentless, people.

Anyway, y’all know how hard I worked to tame my inbox. I put a lot of energy into it. It helped my mental state and brightened my outlook because all those read and unread emails were metaphorically weighing me down. I unsubscribed from bunches of email lists so this wouldn’t happen again, and I’ve been happy with my inbox ever since.

But alas, this wouldn’t be Wranting Wednesday if all remained well in Email-Land! Oh, no no no. That would just be too easy. One of the many side effects of having a university-issued .edu email address is being added onto the campus general interest email list.

What’s that mean, you ask? I’ll tell ya! It means I get lots of emails. Lots of them. Mostly during the school year, but some still send year-round. They’re various things: research studies seeking participants, organizations advertising themselves or their upcoming events, university-wide lectures or shows, any number of things that bears even the slightest relevance among the university community.

Right now, they just increased a-million-fold, since the year just started and eeeeeevery student organization is trying to gain members. Which spells out bad news for my inbox, which is beginning to stack up again, even as I delete frantically, and y’all, it’s the third day of classes and I don’t even have a planner yet so HOW am I supposed to handle ten million emails every day?!

*deep breath*

My brain is too frazzled to come up with an adequate analogy right now, although I’m sure many good ones exist, but it’s like… when you put forth so much effort into getting rid of the pest, but the pest just returns and multiplies in approximately two seconds, it feels like you’re screaming into a void and wasting your energy.

Ughhhhhhhhh. The number is growing, ever so slowly. Look. Look at it. It’s beginning. IT’S HAPPENIIIINNNNGGGG.

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It’s fine! I’m working on it. I’m deleting constantly, and even if I only delete a handful of emails every day, at least I know it’s not as bad as it could be. All I’m saying is, all these emails are proving to be kind of stressful at a very crucial time in the semester. And I think that’s pretty lame.

I’m going to delete a couple more before I get all worked up again. Peace out.

EDIT: The ironic thing here is as soon as I pressed publish, I got an email notifying me of this new post on ally anne marie. I almost lost it!

 

-aam

In Which A Smoothie Becomes A Metaphorical Tool

Some of you keen-eyed folks might have noticed I didn’t post anything on Fridays, when recently I’d been publishing an open letter on Fridays. Smart cookies, you!

Yeah, I missed a day. What can I say? It’s been a busy week, and Friday was sort of my recovery day. Being back at school has been a blast; before the classes started, of course.

As I’m typing this I’ve only been to one class thus far, so I can’t really speak as to how difficult a semester I’ll be having. What I can speak for, though, is the Lemon Twist Strawberry smoothie at Smoothie King is actually amazing and I’m sipping on it right now. If there’s anything I’ve learned from the multiple Smoothie King locations on campus, it’s that college students really flippin’ love their smoothies.

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Some of my friends know this: I tend to order a different smoothie every time I go. I have some returned-to favorites, of course, but I rarely walk up to the counter knowing what I want. I scan the menu first, and try something new. It’s a small thing that brings me joy. It’s like a game.

Interestingly enough, that’s how my professor just told us to approach symbolic logic. Like a game. Let me tell ya, this class seems like it’ll be pretty tough, but when you open the semester with a game-like attitude, from my angle, it looks much less intimidating.

This time last week- heck, even just a few days ago, as Wednesday’s post sort of indicated- this year felt a lot heavier. I was just starting out in an apartment then, with an extremely limited selection of “grocery” items in my pantry and no roommates to make the world feel less big. Now, our fridge is stocked with all the essentials (a pizza + quesadilla monstrosity is amongst the more notable items), and my three roommates and I sat on my bed talking and laughing for two hours last night when we probably should’ve been resting for today.

I already wrote an open letter to my sophomore year of college, but I had some reservations at the time that might have come across in the post. That’s natural, of course- I hadn’t even moved yet, much less spent half a week living alone and struggling to adult. But I’m on the other side of that hurdle now, and this smoothie tastes almost as good as life is going to be. I guess what I’m trying to say is: this year might be a hot mess, it might be wonderful and offbeat and joyful and volatile all at the same time, but you know what I now know?

 

I’m game.

 

-aam

Wranting Wednesday: Lines Are Hard.

I’m taking Design I this semester, and you would think that since it’s an introductory class with no prerequisites, it shouldn’t be too intense.

Well, class hasn’t started yet, but just from looking at the syllabus, I think that would be very, very wrong.

First of all, it’s a three-hour class that meets twice a week. I mean, that alone makes me very, very sad. But just look at this supply list! I don’t even know what most of these things are! How am I supposed to procure them in less than a week?

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(Shout out to the poor employee at Hobby Lobby who’s probably gonna spend half their day helping me.)

I’ve been thinking a lot recently about what it means to find a balance. It seems most the balance has left my life- let me explain. Maybe it’s more a problem with my thought process than my actual behavior, but I can’t seem to find anything in between such things as “overly dependent on other people” and “complete social recluse”. Neither of those things are healthy. So what gives? How do you land yourself smack in the middle?

Boundaries are tough. I’m learning about myself that I’m a person of extremes; I’m either very confident or I’m very overwhelmed and desolate. I’m not sure how to do anything in moderation, but you know, I’m getting there, just like we all are.

Man, this is probably the calmest rant in history, but I feel this odd sense of peace writing this, so maybe that means I’m doing something right.

That’s just one example, but there are many more on various scales. It’s been in my head for some time, and it’s quite personal, actually. This is a remarkably personal post. I’m feeling very vulnerable this week.

Anyways, it’s a 2D design class, so the first week of class will talk about points and lines. And honestly? From that supply list, and the rest of the (rather strict) syllabus, I’m scared.

Lines are hard.

An Open Letter To My Sophomore Year Of College

Alrighty, so I guess we’re doing this.

Dear Next-Eight-or-Nine-ish-Months-Of-My-Life,

I don’t have that much to say to you, I suppose. We’re about to embark on another chapter in our great adventure, and I’m quite excited! Of course, any end-of-summer move-in comes with a complexity of emotions, but overall, I know excitement will win out, especially once I actually get there. Which is tomorrow, by the way. Wheeeeew. Tomorrow. Tomorrow!

I can’t even begin to fathom how you’ll be different from last year, so I’m trying not to expect the same things. It’s easy to see your friends for every meal when you’re a couple hundred yards away- when that becomes a couple miles, not so much.

The thing I have to remember, though, is that just because things are different don’t mean they’ll be worse. My brain tends to assign last year’s expectations to you only because I don’t know what the future holds. I’m physically incapable of imagining what you’ll be like, because there’s such a broad range of possibilities. So the brain defaults to the last thing it knew. As long as you can separate that, you’re all good. I’ll be all good.

I guess what I’m trying to say, both to you and to myself, is I’m not going to try to control you. I couldn’t even if I tried, if we’re being honest here. You’re going to take me in whatever direction you see fit, and it’s really in my best interest to just go along with it. Who knows what kinds of things you’ll reveal to me in our time together? By this time next year, I think I’ll be a drastically different person. But aren’t we all constantly changing, all the time? I think so. I think even those of us at more stable points in our lives can still wake up a different person every single day. I also think that is not a bad thing.

Anyway, you’ve been sneaking up on me for long enough. I have to go finish packing all those things I said I was going to pack on Wednesday but never got around to, so you just sit tight and wait for me. We’ll meet tomorrow.

 

-aam

 

Wranting Wednesday: How Do I Even Have So Much Stuff?!

Where the heck does it all come from?!?!

I thought I learned my lesson when I packed up my dorm room in May. I really did. All summer I talked about how I didn’t need so much stuff and I would be minimizing my life by significant amounts. To be fair, I did do that- in some ways. I decluttered and got rid of a lot of things, both physical and electronic. I think I mentioned it at least once before, but I definitely deleted thoooooooouuuuuuuusands of emails, plus at least a thousand (unimportant) photos from my camera roll. Trash from my room? Gone. Headbands and scrunchies I haven’t worn since I was eight? Gone. Half the population of shoes in my closet? Gone. (I wear the same shoes all the time, anyway! Why did I even own so many?!)

But now, as I find myself packing my room to move into my apartment in a few days, I realize: I didn’t even make a dent in the amount of things I have. And I’m thoroughly confused. It doesn’t feel like I use that many things on a daily basis; I thought by eliminating things I didn’t actually use, I could cut down on the material objects. But alas: it turns out I use way more stuff than I’m capable of processing? I don’t even know. The whole concept is very annoying, which is why I chose to feature it as a rant.

Granted, other than those shoes and a gigantic pile of belts (none of which I’ve worn since probably 2014), I didn’t actually go through any clothes this summer. That task always tends to overwhelm me, and I knew if I put it on my to-do list, the whole list would seem too daunting and never get done. So I chose not to declutter my clothes, leaving that problem for another day (read as: Christmas break). I figured I did enough overhaul last Christmas break (it was intense), I could afford to give myself a free pass for now. But clothes make up such a small percentage of items taking up space in my room. My giant bookshelf owns another chunk of that space- another thing I chose to ignore, since it’s all self-contained anyway. Everything else, though, was fair game, and I’m trying to recall as I write exactly what I DID do.

Let’s see- plenty of bathroom products were tossed. Of course, I’m very proud of the incredible progress I made on my cell phone- besides the literal weeks of sifting through my inbox and camera roll, I deleted tons of apps that I decided I could go without. I made a conscious effort to close a bunch of open tabs on my laptop, also! I keep a lot of tabs open. Most people are extremely unnerved by it. I hear it all the time.

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I recycled a few stacks of papers that I don’t need anymore, I took my jars of coins to the bank to be deposited, and tossed handfuls of random things around my room into our donation box- think old Mardi Gras beads and various other objects I convinced myself were “decor” but actually just cluttered the space.

Even as I type this list, I’m not sure if I’m pleased with all I did or not. Part of me likes seeing it written down because it’s easy to forget just how much progress you made, but the other part of me is looking at this and thinking, “Wow. I thought it was more.”

But there’s no practical purpose in me getting sucked into that slight disappointment. It won’t serve to motivate me; it’ll just drag me down, and ain’t nobody got time for that.

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ANYWAY! This is a rant! Despite my great start with minimizing this summer, I still have so much stuff! And now all that stuff has to go in bags to take back to school! Should I be packing that stuff right now? Absolutely! Have I been sitting at my computer for at least an hour browsing Facebook and typing this blog post while eating a giant Easter chocolate definitely not meant to be eaten in one sitting? Absolutely! It’s called self-care!

Listen, I’ve got to go pack all that aforementioned stuff now, but rest assured: I’m still going to complain about how much stuff I have the entire time. I suspect this rant will never truly be over. Hmmf.

 

-aam