Monday, September 12, 2016

GoodReads: "Mercy" (Jodi Picoult) Preliminary Review

MercyMercy by Jodi Picoult

My rating: 2 of 5 stars


I've read this book maybe twice before, but it's been quite a while.

The first time, I loved it, hence my motivation to re-read it.
The second time, I also enjoyed it.

The third (and current) time, it's been years since I've read it--high school and college have both overwritten any memory of it--and so it's almost as if I'm reading it for the first time.
And this time, I'm on the fence.

I haven't gotten so far into it, but I'm on page 50-something and already annoyed because I know the frustrating betrayal that lies ahead. It seems like it's all for nothing.

Allie (who seems kind and loving and yet very fragile) loves Cam and wants so badly for his "approval".

Cam is kind of self-centered and frustrated with not being able to do what *he* *wants* to do, and not what he needs to do.

Mia seems like a secure, wanderlust lady who takes advantage of being in the right place at the right time to take what she realizes she wants (but doesn't really deserve).

ANYWAY...I'll probably edit this more when I finish the book. :)



View all my reviews

Monday, September 5, 2016

One thing I never expected was to have vivid dreams of you while beside the other that has taken your place.

Sometimes I still find myself thinking of--longing for, even--you in the moments of quiet reflection, but never did I imagine myself to dream of you. I've always thought of sleep as a place of solitude and peace; when the dreams initially stopped, I figured it was a sign you had finally vacated the deeper layers of my heart, that although my daytime thoughts of you were still occasionally present, my heart didn't truly hold you anymore.

But, as for a multitude of many other things, apparently I was wrong.
Somewhere, buried within the vents and chambers of my heart, a small part of your life continues on with each beat of my own.

Thursday, August 25, 2016

Our Inner Ghosts: A Ramble

Since coming back from Grand Rapids, I've felt much less myself than I ever remember feeling.

It's been just over 9 months since I graduated from undergrad--what was supposed to be merely the beginning of my higher education--and now I'm beginning to fear it's the dead end I never expected. In fact, the more I've thought about it, the more I realize life is just a series of dead ends: things going wrong, plans falling through, efforts not being enough, dreams not being achieved, life getting in the way of living.

As the days turn into weeks and weeks into months, dead ends have been falling like dominoes. I'm doing things I never thought I'd act upon and words I never expected to speak flow out of my mouth as effortlessly as water over a fall. Some things are for the better--like my looming final decision to apply to graduate school, my effort to work and help get some sort of financial security for my future--and others...others not so much. I'm crossing boundaries with myself I always told myself I'd be careful and smart enough not to cross, like a wild stranger has been slowly inching me out of my own skin to take my place inside my core.

The old me would worry, would question and argue. The old me would fight.
But this person inside me has barely even noticed, and what has been has passed by without so much as a second thought.
I haven't the energy to care.
I look in the mirror and see many things: the bumps and lingering scars that dot and splotch their way across my face, dry lips, and dark periorbital puffiness. But mostly I just notice what's missing--the skin clarity, the even tone, the sparkle in my eye.



I average about 5 hours of sleep a night; I spend a solid 16+ hours awake per day, which I suppose is "ideal" when you consider the recommended 8 hours of sleep per night. But even with 16 waking hours in a day, I still go to bed exhausted having accomplished nothing. I'm waking up, "living", and going to bed. That is the extent of my life, and I was not meant to live life without a purpose, without a job or a true motivation.

The worst part, I think, is that I can specifically recall a majority of all the triggers and choice decisions that acted as catalysts toward my gradual descent... Rejection. Loss. Emotional struggle from school. Emotional struggle from losing pets. Liars. Psychological breakdown. Loneliness. Disguised unhappiness. Failure. Attempting to ignore building problems. Self disgust.
Looking back on them, I can see where things started to fall apart, one by one, until it reached the point currently where my entire life seems to be in shambles.

My dreams are proving to be almost impossible to even chase after--not because I don't want to, but because I'm in such a position that I can't. They won't let me.
I'm still fat after college, despite my efforts not to be.
I'm getting stupider by the day.
I'm going nowhere in life.
Everything I used to stand for and believe in is slipping away. I feel tainted, dirty, and ruined.

I'm unhappy--no, I'm miserable.
And I want to give up entirely.


Sunday, July 31, 2016

"I am still living with your ghost"

I slept through the night with dreams of you, of which I haven't had in months if not years, and woke up occasionally in bouts of shock and disbelief, followed by the sense of regaining my calm and collectedness when I remembered "It's just a dream".

Yesterday was not the "high school reunion" I had ever imagined.

It was a roller coaster of intense emotions: anxiety, uncertainty, nostalgia, awkwardness, sadness, and an odd sense of joy at seeing people I never really expected to see again, much less speak to or hug.

The visitation and "memorial celebration" in and of itself was surreal--no one ever expected it to be him that we'd all first initially gather to say goodbye to. And for such a young, passionate life to end so suddenly was/is a tragedy. I can't imagine what his family and friends are going through.

Seeing everyone from high school--people I forgot existed, people I knew I'd see, and some I figured would be there--given the circumstances was difficult to deal with. Should we be happy, should we be sad and refuse to smile or greet one another cheerfully? Should we even acknowledge each other, or should we feel free to embrace one another in a desperate attempt to comfort and console?

On the other hand...seeing you there, the first real person I interacted with, was perhaps the most surreal. Most of me expected to see you there--even after almost 3 years of not having spoken to you, it's reassuring to know college hasn't changed your quietly supportive nature. But even then, I wasn't sure what to say to you. Should I greet you warmly and ask how life has treated you? Should I congratulate you on your recent graduation from school? Or, since the Beau was standing right beside me grasping my hand with an unyielding sense of support and comfort, should I simply wave as I did and politely say hello?
That whole moment was a blur, really, but I distinctly remember the Beau squeezing my hand tightly for a split second when we both simultaneously spotted you standing quietly and politely off to the side. He knew. I've told him bits and pieces of the story, how I all but loved you for a year or so, and how I've since never fully ceased harboring those same feelings. They've simply gotten covered up and buried by all the memories the Beau and I have made together, by time, and by life's distractions.
But seeing you last night, alone for the first time in who knows how long, made those feelings explode immediately to the forefront of my thoughts. For several minutes after that, all I could think about was you. All I could focus on was you.

For all intents and purposes, seeing all sorts of people I spent 4 years of high school with and vaguely followed on social medial throughout our college careers felt like our parting ways never happened, but at the same time there was a sense of emptiness, as if a large chunk of time had been simply erased from our memories.

Emotions were vague and random from the moment I woke up yesterday and remembered I had a funeral to go to (in the middle of an otherwise ordinary day) to say goodbye to a high school classmate I knew changed every life he touched in a big way, to the moment I fell asleep with Juna snuggling me and the Beau just a few rooms over, asleep himself.

Today...doesn't feel much different. 

Tuesday, June 7, 2016

I have made the decision to reapply to one or two schools for the 2017 application cycle, purely for the sake of gaining more experience with the process. If anything it'll simply help me improve my application for next year.

Although I haven't been able to add much in regards to my experience, I'm hoping to get that accomplished at some point. My interview this morning was rescheduled for next week (If that doesn't give some sort of "sign" as to how it'll go, I don't know what does.), but I want to try to start seriously volunteering and whatnot over the course of the next 6 months or so.

Ideally, I'd spend the summer working on research, the fall volunteering and working, and the spring as an equine medicine intern. BUT, with working....that throws a wrench in things. Originally I was gonna try to squeeze it all in this summer/fall, then try to go back to school in the spring just for something educational to do. But that's a stupid idea.

In a little over two weeks, I'll be starting to nanny my niece and nephew. That'll keep me busy and give me a source of much-needed income.

Juna's getting stronger and healing more with each day that passes; we're only on day 5 of 10-14, but still...she's (miraculously) been just fine so far. Hopefully it all stays that way.

I've spent the morning working on my personal statement and starting another VMCAS application; mostly it's all been copied over from last year's application, but there are things I need to go through and change and/or confirm. 

Sunday, June 5, 2016

Restless

Ever since touching down, I've been feeling the weight of all the unspent energy settling heavily on my back and shoulders. I've been sitting stagnant for so long that I'm beginning to struggle with a lot of the demons I thought I might have finally left behind when I got out of undergrad.

In a few weeks, I'll be starting a "job" as a nanny for my niece and nephew. It's basically a full-time job, and pays pretty darn well. I'm happy about this--it'll give me something to do instead of just...exist. It'll give me some sort of income, it'll give me a purpose, and it'll give me new experiences. Something to put on my pitiful resume to prove that I'm "responsible", that I have a life outside of not doing anything particularly important. And it'll give me a chance to spend more time with my niece and nephew. 

This next week, I'm supposed to have an online interview with a place in Kentucky for an equine internship in the spring; it's something that lasts from January-May...like a seasonal thing working with foals, which should be pretty amazing and eye opening. It will also give me a chance to get in more large animal stuff. Ideally, I could spend this summer and fall volunteering and building up "character" and showing that I actually am a well-rounded, good hearted, responsible person. 
Anyway. I didn't really want to mention anything about this, in case it failed to go through. Mentioning things that have the chance to go horribly wrong has never gone well for me in the past. But I'm trying to not think much about it and remind myself that it's not the end of the world in case it doesn't go well. Besides, all I did was send in a letter of intent & my resume via email and they asked (again, via email) if I could interview in a few days.
So...it's up in the air I suppose. I may have to write a post after Tuesday expressing my 2nd deepest sorrows and regrets, but...I've already been rejected by vet school, so what could possibly be worse?

Then next May (2017) I could try to reapply to vet schools and hope I get in to start in the fall of 2018. Which means I wouldn't get out until 2022, mere months after my 29th birthday. But...everyone moves through this life at their own pace, with their own style and flair. Provided veterinary medicine is what I'm supposed to do with my life...I'm willing to wait for when I'm ready for it.

Juna was spayed last Thursday (June 2nd), and she's doing well. It's been hard keeping her inactive and not jumping and playing and whatnot, but she's doing well and that's all I can ask for. SO FAR, she hasn't popped any stitches, thank goodness; with each day that passes, the risks that come with that occurring become less and less of a concern.

Anyway...BACK TO THE POINT OF THIS POST:

I've been restless and to be perfectly honest, I've been sinking back into my old mindset of disordered eating. I've been skipping a meal each day, eating less at each meal, keeping overall Calories down, and questioning how fast I could make the number on the scale drop if I just quit trying to put on muscle.

That's kind of what happened last time, back in 2013. The sight of that number dropping with almost gravitational speed was...exhilarating. With each week or two that passed, I vanished a bit more and my soul flew a bit higher. And I guess the bottom line is that all I want right now is to feel my heart shine again.

Wednesday, June 1, 2016

Back to Reality

The Fort Lauderdale vacation has come & gone and it's hard to really wrap my head around--I look back at photos & posts before the vacation, ones where I expressed my excitement, wonder, worries, and hopes for the escape to a form of paradise I've never had the chance to experience, and I can hardly believe that I was once that person.

It seems so long ago, despite having only been a week since I was in the process of packing my suitcase and leaving to meet up with the Beau. We had an awesome time, even through the little struggles we all experienced, the normal ups and downs people go through whenever they embark on an adventure together. I ate mostly to my heart's content & (apparently) didn't gain a pound, which is pretty much a miracle--one I prayed and hoped for leading up and during the time away from the hellhole I call come.

For now, it's back to the grind. Juna's getting spayed tomorrow, so that should be fun for the next two weeks. My student loans start being billed this month, and I'm going to start being a "nanny" for my niece and nephew--I know nothing about being a nanny, but I'm pretty good at being responsible and honestly need to: A) stay busy and B) spend more time with the kids. Plus it might show some of my "responsibility" to the admissions people whenever I reapply to vet school.

Speaking of that, I've been browsing around online and found some large-animal/equine internships near Nashville. I'm not sure if they'll accept someone who's not in college still, but I'll keep looking into and inquiring. Honestly, I'm at the point where if I'm going to do it, I really just want to bite the bitter bullet and do whatever it takes to fill in whatever silly requirements the admissions people ask for.

Afterward,  I hope to prepare for entering into some sort of graduate/post-undergrad education. Either psychology or a master's in public health/epidemiology. Both of this interest me and are far more likely to get me into a permanent job than animal science ever would.

Anyway....for now I'm still floating in that sea of empty nothingness. Like a blank, white space full of everything that isn't.