Saturday, March 5, 2011

Roommates can be friends, but friends should never be roommates

Dear Diary,

I have wanted to write about this for a while, but I'm having a hard time articulating exactly what I'm feeling and experiencing. I have a feeling this is going to be a rambling post with thought tangents branching out in all directions, but we will see. The topic that I'm going to attempt to tackle is how living with BB has changed our friendship, my views of BB and my views of myself.

The most general way to put this is that by living with BB I have somehow lost my best buddy. BB will always be one of my closest pals, but there is an element that died when we became roommates. First off being around someone all the time is quite different than hanging out with someone (generally during good times) then going home to different locations. When you are hanging out you naturally interact the whole time, because you will have your quiet alone time latter, but when you live with someone it's hard to know when the other person is enjoying quiet alone time and you will be intruding and when they would welcome an interruption. Also when I am moving from one location to another location and I pass BB, there is an awkwardness. I feel I have to acknowledge BB or seem rude, but at the same time I was on my way to do something and don't want to get involved in a conversation right then.

Mostly I miss the open communication that is natural between best buddies. Normally when a roommate does something to annoy you but it's not something you feel is confrontation worthy, you rant about it to your best buddy and they have your back, even when it's something stupid like not rinsing out the dishrag after using it. If your best buddy is your roommate, where do you turn? When you and your significant other have a disagreement, you hash it out with your best buddy. If you live with your significant other and your best buddy that puts your best buddy in an awkward situation because they have to live with your significant other too.

I have learned a lot about BB that is hard to reconcile with the person I knew before, or thought I knew. For the longest time I was under the impression that BB was much smarter than I was, but living together I have learned that BB is trivia fact smart. I guess I was under the impression that because BB was the first to speak up and replied with confidence BB must be correct, even if I was thinking something else was correct. Previous to our living together, I was under the impression that BB's stories were closer to the actual event, rather than as embellished as I see they are. I have learned that BB struggles with self esteem when before I was under the impression that BB was confident and unfazed by the remarks of others.

I have learned that I am a stronger person than I believed. I have realized that by comparing myself to how I perceived other people was not fair to me and was skewing my self perception, because no matter how it seems everyone has their own struggles. I have learned that I judge those I care about harsher than I judge strangers. I hold the people I care about to standards that are sometimes unrealistic for who they are. I am now aware that I need to work on acceptance and understanding of my loved ones. I understand that even your best buddy wants you to see them in the best light possible and hide their flaws. My eyes have been opened to the fact that no matter how annoying BB is, no matter how embellished BB's stories are, no matter how many times BB takes credit for my thoughts or insights, no matter how much I secretly cuss BB; I will always be there for BB and I will always care about BB. I only hope that when we are no longer roommates we can renew our friendship to what it was before.

Until next time,

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

The end is just another beginning

I enjoy this photo for so many reasons, it's hard to know where to start. I appreciate the different textures, the brittle shell, the whispy soft seed fluff. I smile at how the light in the fluffy seed stuff gives it a bit of inner glow. I admire how the focus of the plant is so crisp while the background is just a blur.

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

A special place

Dear Diary,
Saying good-bye is never easy. Especially if you're saying good-bye to the only place you've ever known. Especially if it is a place that holds most of your memories.

I look around one last time, the ugly grayish white fake wood paneling with the spot that looks like the Hulk when it's dark and you're trying to sleep. The sea of multi-tone blue shag carpeting where the mermaids would sit while I told them stories and the dolphins would jump through my hula-hoop, it's been a while since my sea friends came to play.

It's empty now, in my mind I take my things out of the truck and put them back where they go, my bed on the left side of the room YS's bed on the right (it still irks me that YS got to be near the window even though I am older)  I pull out the white and yellow striped sheets and the light blue comforters and make the beds… something is wrong; that's right YS never made the bed, I yank that comforter off and drop it on the floor where it always ended up. Now I put the white dresser with three drawers on my side and three drawers on YS's side between the beds. The small table lamp with the plain beige shade goes in the middle of the dresser because I’m supposed to share (just a little closer to my side, so I can see better to read). Books I need my stack of books, my mind finds them, not the books that were there most recently but my favorites through the years, picture books mixed with chapter books. My dual deck AM/FM boom box sits behind my books, I can’t see much of it from the door, but a little black peeks over the edge of the dresser toward my bed, and the antenna pokes out from behind my stack of books.

Now for the toy boxes that Santa brought us for Christmas years ago, the ones that mom made, hand painted with a soft top so we could sit on them. That’s right they go at the foot of our beds, now my mind fills them with all of my beloved toys that did not make it to the truck, the only toys on the truck are the ones that lived on my bed. I need to put them on the bed near my pillow there that’s better the stuffed dinosaur pajama holder from grandpa the Christmas before he died, and my big bear that has guarded me for as long as I can remember, the smaller bear that my mom made.

I notice the walls are blank, still just the ugly paneling, the window is big and empty looking onto the street, where are the curtains? I go to the dumpster and I find the dingy yellow curtains with the horizontal slit at the bottom where YS tore them while fighting with pirates. I put my shelf back up and put up my special collection of what-nots. I put up YS’s stuffed toy hammock (I know I always complained about it but the place is just not right without that burst of color) and I put the ugly orange monkey hanging down because that’s where it goes. I put up the water color of the ocean that our uncle made many years before we were born, it’s not the greatest picture and it’s in a cheap plastic black frame, but it’ always been centered over the dresser. I take all my drawings and hang them back over my bed; I’m a very good artist, maybe when I have nieces or nephews I’ll draw them a picture to hang in there room. I hang YS’s magazine cut outs and school art projects back where they were.

There now it’s all set in my mind, everything unpacked and put where it goes. I focus all of my energy on the scene before me. It’s important to remember because if I ever want to come back to this place this will be the only door to the only bedroom I have ever known.

Until next time,

Monday, February 28, 2011

People my age

Dear Diary,

I was wasting time on facebook today and I realized that I'm not like other people my age. I look at people my age and I just don't fit with that group. Some examples:

People my age are not supposed to be renting a crap ass apartment with their SO and BB.
They have mortgages on houses with families or condos living it up bachelor style.

People my age have careers, they have a place they are supposed to go a set number of days a week, and it might be a crappy career, but it's one they chose.
Not a job they take because it's the only thing they can get, that only lasts long enough to pay the bills for a while.

People my age have families (see most of the people my age on facebook) or live extravagant lifestyles (look at my friend who has been snowboarding like 100 times this season, or my other friend who decided to go the Hawaii for a long weekend because it was something new) or they do both (like my friends who took their family which includes 2 children to Greece, because that's where they wanted to vacation).
They do not hope to do these things some day,  they do it now.

Why do people my age do it now, because if we wait too much longer we will be old. I have total respect for people who do adventurous things in their 70's and 80's (and don't get me wrong I have a good 40 + years before I'm in that age bracket) and you have to have some admiration for people who start families latter in live, because really kids are a lot of work, and who wants to be chasing toddlers for retirement? I realize that this is a very pessimistic view, but I think we have already established I'm a pessimistic person.

Point? Right sometimes I loose sight of that. I remember when I was learning to read in elementary school; the kids who were advanced were the eagles, the kids who were average were bluebirds, and the slow kids were sparrows (kind of mean right since sparrow is a more difficult word to figure out than bluebird). Anyway I was an eagle and I always felt bad for the sparrows because they were so far behind the rest of us. Now I feel like I'm the only sparrow watching the eagles soar and hearing the bluebirds sing, while I'm doing nothing. How did I go from figuring things out so easily to always feeling like I'm trying to catch  up?

Does anyone else ever feel like they become more developmentally challenged as they progress through life?