Honesty Hour

Today I was in the car with my mother, drinking coffee, when she turned to me and asked:

“What did you get in your summer classes in Italy?”

Now I’m sure this is a normal question for most parents to ask their children.  But since my second year at college my mother made it a point to stop asking.  She also forbade my father from doing so.

I responded honestly.

“I got an A in one course and Incomplete in the other which I’m now taking care of.”

She was very happy and was planning on telling my father as soon as she got home.  But she then took a small inhale and was silent.  That usually means she has more to say.

“What is it?”

“Have you gotten a lot of D’s, Jane? I’m worried, I have to ask.”

I turned to face her and realized I had to tell the truth.

“I’ll be honest with you, Mom.  I haven’t gotten any D’s…but I have been racking up the Incompletes.”

She seemed relieved.  And I began to feel guilty immediately.  I’d allowed her to worry without reassuring her, knowing full well everything she else she has to deal with.

“How long do you have to complete them?”

I tried to sound confident when the truth is I have no idea.

“Well, you know, they can change a grade at any point while you’re at school”.

I try not to focus too much on this point but the fact is that I don’t know my deadlines. And I’m too scared to ask.  Maybe its just a matter of when a professor loses patience with me?  I don’t know.  I’m planning on finishing at least one course during winter break and the rest during summer.  But as always, we’ll see.

 

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The First Week

Initial thoughts:

Italian opera–  My professor seems to be under the impression that he’s the new Robin Williams, albeit a slightly obnoxious racist version.  He also might be stealing my parents’ money this semester.  There hasn’t been any mention of the assigned readings listed on the syllabus (or any meaningful discussion or lecture) and when I approached him he simply shrugged and told me not to worry about it.

Structure of information-  Unfortunately this satisfies a general university requirement (hooray for state schools) and I sort of have to take it.  I’m hoping it morphs into a social/anthropological discussion since I am interested in the effect of technology on our generation (as you could tell from some of my posts).  About 70% of the course is online and involves a lot of postings and discussions (i.e. nonsense).

English Theories (Poetry)–  The professor and subject matter is bearable but as it is a basic course I might be the only person in there with a pulse.

Italian Senior Seminar– I’m excited to practice speaking on a weekly basis but I’m a bit anxious about the final paper (as usual).  The professor is also really excited about an experimental research symposium but in my experience these things usually end in failure.

I’m also attempting to stay on top of my assignments (doesn’t that sound familiar?) by creating smaller goals and deadlines for myself.  I’ve spoken to my professors who have agreed to work with me and hold me accountable.  I’m thinking maybe less freedom is the key?

New Semester, Same Jane

Classes start tomorrow. I feel as anxious as ever about coursework. And to top it all off I’m still a bit shook up I guess. (Read my last two posts for more on that.)

There’s really no point in making these promises and resolutions I can’t keep. But in the spirit of tradition:

-I will attend classes.

-I will begin my work early and finish it on time.

-I will blog regularly.

-I will exercise.

-I will keep the apartment clean.

Who else is sick of this?

I’m the worst…

I wasn’t always like this. Up until I was about 14 I had to finish anything I started. It concerned my parents at times, bordering on a compulsion. It would haunt me for years if I did in fact quit something.

But something happened to me at around 15/16. And it only got worse after college. Now I’m just a jumble of ideas and inspiration but nothing ever gets done. I plan to cook, exercise, write, etc, etc. But if I do manage to start something it rarely gets finished.

I could easily blame it on my anxiety/depression. When the going gets tough, the Jane gets going; but is that the honest truth? Or am I just a wannabe? A floozy?

So here I am apologizing yet again. But I suppose its mostly to myself.

-Be back soon (hopefully).

Crap I DON’T waste my time on

piSo I recently wrote a post on all the crap I waste my time on.  And as I’ve mentioned before (and the name of this blog suggests), I do a whole lot of nothing.  But I did start thinking of some of the things I flat out refuse to spend time on:

my hair– So this came to mind first as it’s the first thing I choose not to do in the morning.  I wash my hair every night but it’s ridiculously long and I just don’t feel the need to do it (unless I’m going out out which is hardly ever).  I comb it when I get out of the shower but that’s it, no brushing, no straightening, no styling.

twitter, instagram, tumblr, snapchat– I’m sure you could already guess this one.  I’ve gone into detail about it before but I simply don’t think my life is that interesting, neither is any one else’s really.

taking pictures– I’m not one of those girls with a camera on nights out.  I absolutely hate being in a group and having to pose for a half hour until there’s a picture everyone is satisfied with.  As far as profile pictures go, I probably change mine every 6 months or so.

bubble/colorful letters-  Ok so this one is more of an issue I had as a 3rd grader but you’d be surprised how many girls still write their notes in bubble letters and color code them.  I’m sorry but I didn’t have time for it then and I definitely don’t now.

the delicate cycle– Ok please let me know if any woman actually washes her delicates separately.  I feel kind of bad I don’t but seriously that’s like a whole extra 35 minutes and $1.50.

Crap I waste my time on

youtube_logo_stacked-vfl225ZTxMy last two posts have been a little on the heavy side so I thought I might write something a bit fun.  Everyone has their routine online.  You know what I mean, like immediately logging into Facebook.  So I thought I’d share exactly what I do when I’m procrastinating.

1.  GMAIL– I have to check my email immediately.  Its usually just notifications from professors and such.

2. Facebook– Its really more of an obligation at this point.  I definitely don’t spend more than 5 minutes on it but I need to make sure I don’t have any new friend requests or posts on my wall.  I’m sure everyone can relate to that.  I also feel the need to go through my newsfeed.  This usually results in me feeling incredibly annoyed at how stupid everyone is or feeling depressed that I’m not traveling the world or writing a book or whatever it is a select few of my “friends” are doing.

3. WordPress– This is a new one but definitely enjoyable.  I don’t really care so much about any notifications I get but I can spend ages reading others’ posts.

4. Youtube– I don’t know about anyone else but I think Youtube is fabulous.  I’m not one to watch people falling or doing gross “challenges” but I do love tutorials:

As far as cooking/baking goes I highly recommend Laura in the Kitchen and Joy of Baking.  They’re really easy to follow and everything I make from them always turns out great.

For beauty, I absolutely adore A Model Recommends and Lisa Eldridge. They’re both British and therefor lovely to listen to, plus they’re so elegant I could cry a little.

5. Extras– I occasionally frequent a few other blogs.  Plus I can spend ages researching something random that popped into my head, whether thats Son of Sam, the plot to a film, or some rare disease.  Is anyone else like that?

Weekly wrap-up and therapy session

I really didn’t think I would survive this week but its been one of my more productive ones in quite a while.  And for some reason I’ve been dying to post on here.

Firstly, and this is very exciting, I completed an assignment on time.  This hasn’t happened in honestly, about a year.  Granted it wasn’t a full on paper, but it’s still the kind of thing I would have freaked out about.  I also felt slightly unprepared for an exam today but I went anyway.  It actually ended up being not too bad.  And, I made it to my career counseling appointment and have a lead for a part-time and have started my hunt for an internship.

Overall, I’m proud of myself.  But, I can’t ignore the fact that I missed several classes this week, mostly because of my sleep schedule.  I simply can’t fall asleep at night anymore, I’m not sure how much of it is habit and how much is anxiety.  I’d take a sleeping pill except they literally put me out for days.  Maybe cutting it in half?  Anyways I just want more than anything to be one of those regular, normal, ordinary students who can write a paper and go to class.  But baby steps, I suppose.

I also had a rather helpful Skype session with my therapist, who I hadn’t spoken to in quite some time.  We talked mostly about my family and how the chaos going on at home (my mom’s broken ankle and its many repercussions) has actually been really helpful to me.  I feel independent, in control, and capable of handling whatever is thrown at me.

Recently I’ve also come to the realization that, my mother can often be a source of anxiety for me.  This is really difficult, as we are as close as can be and I consider her my absolute best friend. But lately I’ve chosen to put some distance between us.  And by that I mean talking to her once a day instead of four times a day.  The less I talk to her the more easily I can pinpoint the things she says that do in fact make me anxious.  My therapist pointed out that she and I actually spend a lot of our time worrying together.

He also made a rather interesting comment about the nature of my anxiety.  I myself have noticed that since arriving at my new university my anxiety has become less articulated or specific.  It’s no longer the same train of thoughts I had in high school for instance: “If you don’t do well on this paper, you won’t get into a good college, if you don’t get into a good college…”

I’ve given up this type of thinking now that I’m at a state school.  Instead I simply get an anxious feeling whenever there’s a paper to do.  He said my anxiety has now become a “conditioned response”.  While I’m obviously familiar with conditioning the thought had never crossed my mind.  Its comforting to know my anxiety is based on the same principle that has me answering the phone when it rings.