It literally took 30 years, but I’m finally engaged

It’s true.

 

Andrew proposed to me at the James J Hill Library in downtown Saint Paul on June 19th, 2018. I’ll always remember that date, because I’ll always remember that I had my first real date with a man (after a long-term relationship with a not-so-great breakup) way back in 2010 on June 19th. It must mean something. Maybe I’ll have a kid born on that day in a few years.

He had conspired with a couple ladies at the library (and my friend, Amanda) to make sure that it was documented and memorable experience: He said that we should go out to dinner and go to the mental health exhibit at the MN Science Museum, and I had mentioned to my brother that ‘he better be proposing’ because he had been bugging the shit out of me to make sure I had that day off work. Then as we got downtown, he said that we should just check out the library because we were right there. I had shown him photos of the library months before saying that it reminded me of Beauty and the Beast.

We went into the library and were told that the stairs were blocked, so we’d have to take the elevator up to the second level, which we did, and starting walking around looking at all of the insane books/collections. When we got to the far end of the room and turned to look out at everything, he started saying that he wanted to start a new chapter with me as he got down on one knee. I instantly started crying and said yes – or I nodded yes? I was in shock! After we stood there hugging, crying, looking at the ring for a few minutes, Andrew told me to look across the library at a reading area where a woman was sitting – that woman was my friend Amanda, and then he pointed out a guy with a camera – that guy was Amanda’s boyfriend, who was taking photos of us the whole time.

I told you – well-documented and memorable.

Oh, and the ring he gave me was one that I’d shown him on etsy at some point. This guy pays attention to me.

Ten days later, we had set a date. By July 7th, I had ordered a dress. We had booked a reception/dinner location by mid-August, and I’d had a photographer in mind for like, years.

We ended up deciding on doing a family-only ceremony somewhere and then a dinner/non-traditional reception with everyone afterward. We’re getting married on Friday the 13th of this year – 91319, a palindrome (’cause we nerdy like that), just a couple blocks from where we lived when we first moved up here, and, oh, there’s a full moon that night. And the dinner location references a black dog.. huh.

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It’s definitely a blessing and a curse to have the date set so far away from the engagement – we’ve gotten so much done so early and haven’t had to feel rushed with anything. We got the hotel blocks booked, the photographer booked, I knew who would do my hair, I’ve found someone who will do my makeup; my dress took about seven months to come in, so I’m glad I had the time to wait for that.. but then at the same time, I’m impatient as all hell. And there are some things that just have to wait – flowers, hair/makeup trials, sending invitations, booking a honeymoon, figuring out transportation, etc. Which can also be a bit frustrating or just nerve-wracking when I want to get things done NOW.

Maybe writing about it will help – I think I’m going to try to do updates as time goes on, as things get accomplished, as nerves start to fray haha but honestly, I don’t think I’ll get too stressed.

I say that now.

Bullseye

So, I got the job.

I was beyond ecstatic. I went through training and learned a lot. I was assigned my ‘area’ and I’ve really come to ‘own’ it. I can get stuff done and I’ve had a couple leadership opportunities. I love most, if not all, of the people I work with. In fact, I’m having drinks with one of the fellow female team leads tomorrow after we close. I don’t even dread going to work.

All in all, I’m super happy with how things are going.

Then there’s everything else.

A typical week looks like:
Monday – Andrew opens and I close, so we don’t see each other.
Tuesday – Andrew opens and I’m off, so we don’t see each other ’til he’s off.
Wednesday – Either I open/he closes or he opens/I close, so we don’t see each other.
Thursday – Either I open or close and he’s off, so we either don’t see each other ’til I’m off or we do until I go to work.
Friday – Either we both open and we don’t see each other ’til we’re both off, or one of us closes and the other opens, so we don’t see each other.
Saturday – Either I open/he closes or he opens/I close, so we don’t see each other.
Sunday – Same thing.

Then every other weekend, we’re both off.

Tonight, we said goodnight and I said, see you Tuesday after five. Like.. so this is it, huh? This is what adults do? This is what relationships are when both partners are gainfully employed?

Okay.

Obviously, I’m overjoyed to have a steady income again and I’ve got way less anxiety and I love interacting with people every day (yet still hate people, paradoxically) and I feel good (but sore) being on my feet all day. All of that is good.

But I can’t help but feeling like, ‘this is it? Like, really?’

This weekend was our first weekend off together and we slept. all. goodamn. weekend. Because we’re exhausted. I hope not every weekend off is like that. I hope every day that I eventually get used to everything; that my body eventually gets used to this level of activity.

I think it will.

I mean, people do this, I guess. They’re used to it and apparently, it works. Apparently, this environment is conducive to having a relationship and a family because people do it.

I guess I just wish that I didn’t have to. But then, everyone probably does. And I know people have it worse.

I guess I don’t remember it being this way before, but then again I didn’t have a partner worth a damn or share a dwelling or have a dog.

I guess I’ll just get used to it.

Ye Olde Tale of ‘Can’t Anyone Else Hear That Fucking Yippy Dog in 304?’

But seriously. I can’t even think right now.

This is far from the first time I’ve been on the edge of YouTubing a video of ferocious dog barking and pointing the speaker directly at the wall.

Back in September, or so, we got a new neighbor… and her dog. For three weeks, the dog barked from 7am to 5pm. Nonstop. Every day.

And not like, a dog bark. It’s some little yippy-ass, ankle-biter of a “dog” that apparently has anxiety, so it just barks all. goddamn. day.

Someone on my floor left a note on her door back in September saying something along the lines of, hey, your dog barks all day and it’s annoying. Her response? A notebook page-long note saying that we just need to get laid and that we’re assholes and that if we leave another note on her door, she’ll call the police because that’s harassment. Oh, and if we have a partner already who engages us in the sex, he/she needs to do a better job.

LOL. Okie dokie.

Finally, after God-knows how many of us complained, she took the dog to the vet(?) and then it quit barking…

Or so I thought.

This weekend, it started up again. This time at night. And then yesterday. And now here we are today, an hour and a half into an incessant yip session.

And no, it doesn’t matter how loud I turn up my TV. It’s already up higher than normal and it’s giving me a headache.

Sure, I could just go in the bedroom where I can’t hear it (as much). Okay, but really, I can’t even be in my own living room?

Sigh. Apartment living. I wonder about the guy in 303…

Speaking of 3OH!3… If I listen to Chokechain loud enough, I can’t hear it anymore! Success!

Someone Wants Me

After upwards of 400 job applications submitted from the East Coast to the West Coast and the No Coast in between, finally someone wants me.

It took until the interview process to realize how much I actually want/need a job. I mean, I knew I needed one, but it wasn’t until something actually seemed promising that I felt that drive again.

I’ve loved the jobs I’ve had. And I haven’t had many. I started at Goodwill when I was 16 and worked there for almost four years, then at a car dealership for almost four years, then at NP Dodge for a year. Then London for three months while I finished my masters, followed by a couple years of unemployment and self-employment.

When the Target opportunity came up, it reminded me of the NP Dodge opportunity. When I was desperately trying to get away from the car dealership, I saw an opening for an escrow officer at NP Dodge and had no idea what that word even meant. I knew I fit most of the requirements and I knew that I was a quick learner, so I went ahead and applied on a whim. Much to my surprise, I was called in for an interview. I remember exactly what I wore. I had a great time in the interview and was told that they had a few others to do, so I should hear at some point. I went home and took a nap and was woken from that nap with a phone call: a job offer.

I ended up absolutely loving escrow and real estate. And I really excelled at it. After a few months, I was promoted to a salaried position and had a junior officer working under me. Soon after that, I was handling all of the REOs and FSBOs. It really killed me to leave. I know I wrote about it in here somewhere. It really did. I should have gone back, actually, after finishing my masters. I was just so sure that I’d land the perfect job in social media somewhere in New York.

Until I didn’t. I had quick-links at the top of my browser for HBO jobs, BBC jobs, BBC America jobs, AMC jobs, NBC jobs, ABC jobs, Discovery jobs, Time Warner jobs; pretty much every major network. I was on LinkedIn for hours every day scrolling through page after page of social media manager jobs and the like. I realized quickly that with the SM manager positions, they required anywhere from 1-5 years of experience. I applied anyway, but it was just one meme after another.

I had limited myself to the coasts, so I started pulling in from each direction. Okay, no one in New York or California wants me, maybe something in Connecticut or Washington? Okay, no one there, so maybe Colorado or Chicago? On top of that, I had started applying for whatever job was available at the places I actually wanted to work (the networks). Got a receptionist job open? Okay, hire me. Someone needed in the mail room? I’ll do it. Finally, I was applying for the same thing in Omaha, wondering if I’d ever be able to do anything remotely like I had dreamed.

When I moved to Minnesota with Andrew, I started looking around at anything surrounding me to see what kind of jobs were available. Lo and behold, the same IT/nursing jobs that were in Omaha were up here, too. i.e. nothing for which I was qualified. I found some social media or otherwise media-related positions open, but either I didn’t have the experience (cue the memes) or I just didn’t get the job in the end.

I’m sure I’ve said it before, but just in case I haven’t: I know how extremely blessed and fortunate I am to having been able to support myself off of my savings/trust for so long whilst looking for a job. I wouldn’t have been able to do it, much like much else, without my grandparents having the foresight and ability to create such a thing. I think it also enabled me to not search as frantically, and it definitely allowed me to hold out for the right job. Even when I panicked and got anxiety about my dwindling savings, I knew I had at least another year, if I so needed. But then it’d be gone, and what would my grandparents say, if they could?

So in the midst of another mild panic attack regarding just that topic, I decided to see if there were any openings at this Target Express down the street. Yes, Target Express. Google it. It’s amazing. I’m obsessed with it. I’m possessive over it. I need one like, in my apartment. Anyway, there was a Team Lead position open. My first thought was, oh I don’t have any leadership experience – thinking, I’ve never had the title of ‘manager.’ But like the escrow officer situation, I did meet the other requirements, so I submitted an application.

Two days later, I got a call about coming in for an interview. That interview was life-changing, no joke. The woman I met with just totally turned my view around: I had loads of leadership experience, I had led many people and many situations. She told me to be confident in that. She even said that I was phenomenal. I can say with 100% certainty that I’ve never gotten that compliment in my life. I walked out of that interview with my head held so high. And I actually had hope again. I didn’t even realize just how hopeless I’d become until she gave some hope back to me. I doubt very much I’ll ever have an interview quite like that again.

After that, I interviewed with that woman’s mentor, who has been with Target for as long as I’ve been on Earth. Then I got to move on to the next one, and the next one, and suddenly, I’m at the First Ever Target to make sure I will be a good fit. When the store leader of THE Target said she’d love to have me as part of her team, I legit got choked up right there in her office. Someone actually wants me. Someone actually sees value in me. Someone thinks I’d be a good addition to their team, their company. It had been so long.

I walked straight out onto the sales floor and bought a few pairs of khakis and a few red shirts.

My goal is to not only sail through training and rise in the ranks, but to hopefully express just how thankful and honored I truly am for this opportunity. I know I expressed in each interview just how much of a Target fangirl I am, but I mean, I’m actually sitting here in tears just writing this up.

Who knows what this opportunity has in store for me. And Andrew. And for us. I mean, this is going to help us with our goal to find a house in another year or so. This is going to save us so much money on groceries and everything else we need. Personally, this is going to give me something to do. Something to get me out of the house. Something to feel like I’m part of the human race again. I have worth again. I can get rid of the guilt I’ve felt for depleting my trust. Hell, I can better serve the purposes of Far From Everything Films. Just.. so many good things.

Oh, one of my favorite parts: I had forgotten to take my lip ring out when I was meeting with HR, so I apologized for it. She said, “so what? You can wear that here.”

I have half of my head shaved, gauged ears, and a lip piercing, and all of that is okay. (Here come the tears again). Seriously, it’s never been okay. I had to ask/beg permission to put blue in my hair while I was at Goodwill. I got written up at Woodhouse for forgetting to take out my lip piercing. The head on the stud was stuck and I couldn’t get it off without greasy pliers from the service department, cutting up my lip in the process. I couldn’t wear it at NP Dodge either. Nor do I remember having any sort of wild hair along the way.

Now it’s okay. Now I’m okay just as I am. Not like these things make me who I am, but they are part of me. And they’re okay. What a relief.

This whole situation is such a relief. Finally, someone wants me. Target wants me. And Target wants me for me.

 


 

Speaking of someone wanting me, I’m also blessed to have a partner who wants me, and wants me for me. In spite of the fact that I worry too much and I’m a shit and I’m petty and I hardly ever put any effort into my appearance (subject to change with impending job) and I never help with the dishes and leave hair in the shower and otherwise leave the house a mess and whine when he stays at work late and whine just a lot of the time, probably, and make the occasional comment about wanting a ring and a baby and a house and an additional dog (or four) and all these other things, he seems to love me and even like me.

I’d quote a bunch of Sara Bareilles lyrics now, but I’ve already wept enough during this post.

The ‘T’ Word

Taxes.

Taxes, dude; I’m so afraid of taxes.

This morning, I walk out into the living room and Andrew’s like, ‘yay, I’m done with my taxes!’ I literally didn’t even know what to say. How are you already done with your taxes? Then as time went on, he’d get email confirmations that his state and federal taxes had been accepted.

WHAT.

It’s like, February 2nd. How.

My fear comes from the fact that I’ve never been able to do my own taxes. I grew up with and still have a trust fund that my grandparents graciously set up for me, and between my aunt in Pennsylvania being the trustee for so long and the apparent complication of processing things like the K1, there’s just no fucking way I’d get everything right.

I know the trust is a blessing, but it’s also a curse in some ways. One very obvious way today is that I’m taxes-ignorant. In the strongest sense.

I moved to Minnesota in the middle of last year, so now I’m freaking out about what I’ll have to do between Nebraska taxes and Minnesota taxes. I’m still technically unemployed, depleting my trust for ‘income,’ and I sold a bit of AdvoCare via independent contracting. Just what the actual fuck do I do now?

Oh, how I wish I could just fill out forms online, hit ‘submit,’ and watch for my refund check. But I can’t.

I guess in many ways, it’s a good problem to have. I just worry that it’s something I’ll never learn how to do. Or even remotely understand.

I started reading through this Minnesota Renters’ Refund form that I got from my landlord. It said I needed this M1PR form. I got on the website and found that form, which told me if I was a partial resident last year, I’d also need the M1NR form. I found that, and it said I’d have to enter information from the M1 form and the federal return. *head explodes*

I just want to be gainfully employed and stay in the same place and- oh God, can I even use my Nebraska tax guy for my Minnesota taxes? Is that a stupid question?

The fact is, I don’t know. Bloody anything. And it’s forcefully-learned helplessness.

It’s February First

In case you hadn’t checked the date yet today.

To me, it feels more like New Years Day than New Years Day did.

The beginning of the year was packed with traveling and Christmas and more traveling and more Christmas… and more traveling and more Christmas… and then one more traveling to get home. We ate and ate and ate and ate some more, and slept like shit on an air mattress and a full-sized bed.

On top of all that, I had finally received the demand letter which was to go to the drunk driver’s insurance company so we can finally settle this damn thing. I learned that he had gotten picked up while driving under revocation and I think I laughed for about an hour. I could have bet anyone any amount of money that he would have done that and I would have won whatever amount of money I had bet. Some people just don’t learn. I had typed up an entry ten days after his sentencing a year ago about how I desperately hoped that he had gotten the wake-up call he needed and that every day since the accident had been filled with reevaluation and change.

Guess not. Idiot.

The days after traveling were filled with sleep, laziness, Fallout 4, and more laziness. It was amazing. Andrew was off of work, waiting to start his new job, so we got to actually spend time together. Even though, toward the end, he started getting cabin fever, I was so damn happy to have him home. We hadn’t gotten that kind of time together since… I don’t know when. It was a nice prize after suffering through his shitty Pac Sun hours.

Then, as he was about to start his new job at Target, I decided to check out the Target site for any openings. There’s a Target Express just right down the street that I’m obsessed with, and they happened to have a Team Lead position available. I applied, even though I had never been in a management position. A day or two later, I got a call to set up an interview.

Since then, I’ve had two additional interviews, and I’m just waiting on pins and needles for The Call. Whatever the decision may be. I’m always a hopeful, err-on-the-side-of-positive person, and I feel like I’ve got the job already. It’s one of those things where I went into it thinking, ‘this would be great, I love Target, I could probably do this job’ and since that first interview, I know this is the job I should have, it’s the job I deserve, and it’s the job at which I’m going to excel.

Then again, I may not get it. Maybe it’s not the right time, maybe it’s not the right any-number-of-things.

We’ll see.

Still doing film production, as if I could give that up. Brentwood Strangler, the short we produced, has won a few film festival awards, and we’re to be filming our first feature film this spring/summer in Australia. I’m so excited to head back to Oz and see my twins! 2016 is really shaping up to be a good year so far.

Also, in the mean time, since all the travel and eating, I’ve changed my diet; I lost the six or so pounds I gained over the holidays, putting me back to where I started. Today, I’m starting the AdvoCare 24 Day Challenge and a five-day workout split. I’ve got a renewed sense of, I don’t know, purpose? I guess? I’ve been visualizing myself doing these lifts and taking progress pictures and, much like with the Target job, I just feel like I’ve already accomplished what I set out to do.

I’m going to be twenty-eight this year. [Jesus]. It’s time I embrace being an adult and take care of what needs care. My body, my mind, my bank account. I got a nice little preparatory month and now the real shit is going to go down. It’s February First and the New Year is officially underway.

Far From Everything Films presents… ‘Brentwood Strangler’

Far From Everything Films presents… ‘Brentwood Strangler’

I’ve been absolutely horrible at updating lately, I know; however, take a look at Dread Central’s write-up of a short film that FFE executively produced: Brentwood Strangler

More to come 😉

A Year Ago

A Year Ago

A year ago, today, my life was turned upside down.

I had just watched my mom get remarried after having been with my dad for 25 years. I was driving over to see my dad around 930pm. His driveway butts up to a busy street on which I had been rear-ended badly not six months earlier, so I drove a half-block past his house to make a left turn onto a side street and then turn around.

I was slowing and downshifting to make the left turn from the center turning lane when I heard loud, screeching tires. I had no idea where they were coming from until I was slammed into head-on.

When I opened my eyes again, I was facing oncoming traffic three lanes over on the other side of the street. My horn was blaring. I had glass and airbag dust in my mouth and nose, and the smell of gunpowder was overwhelming. I had to get out. My driver’s door wouldn’t open and I panicked. I started to roll down the window, ready to crawl out if necessary. Then I took a breath, climbed over my gearshift and got out the passenger side.

I stood by my dear, demolished MINI Cooper and saw a man walking toward me from his vehicle, now stalled in someone’s yard just beyond my car.

He got very close to me and I saw blood running down his face. He asked if I was okay. I said, no. He walked away and got back in his vehicle.

The neighbor whose evening we’d disturbed was now outside; she followed the man back to his car and then came over to see if I was okay.

“Did you smell the alcohol on his breath?” No, I can’t smell anything but gunpowder, still. “I called the ambulance.” Thank you.

She started walking back behind his vehicle and I stopped her. He’s gonna back up! I shouted. Instead, he drove forward through the yard and down the street, away from the accident. Away from me. And this.

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It was then that I realized I was dripping blood onto this woman’s driveway. It was coming from my left hand. I was also spitting it out with the powder and glass that refused to get out of my mouth.

A couple passersby had stopped at this point. I had started to walk the two houses to my dad’s house when I decided against it. I asked one of the men who stopped if I could borrow his mobile phone because mine was somewhere in my car.
I called my dad, do you hear the horn? “What?” Can’t you hear the horn blaring outside? I’ve been in an accident!

I was mad. I was frustrated. I was in shock.

People kept trying to get me to sit down. I had specks of sparkling glass coating my arms, my face, my clothes. I had blood droplets on my jeans. My new jeans. Go figure.

The police, fire engine, and ambulance arrived. I asked a fireman to retrieve my phone, another to turn off my damn horn. I remember thinking to myself to be very polite and call them ‘sir,’ the policemen ‘officer.’

In the ambulance, the paramedic was heartbreakingly gentle as he wiped the glass from my arms and feet with a wet paper towel while I called my mom, just a few hours into her honeymoon. She frantically asked if she should come home and I told her no, I was alright; I’d be alright. She really wanted to come home, but I wouldn’t let her.

After the phone call, the paramedic told me that I had a great attitude, considering.

They took me to the hospital where I had x-rays on my hands, chest, torso, knees, and feet. My chest took the blow from the airbag and seatbelt, my left hand had a laceration on the middle finger from the broken windshield and the heel of my right hand had a contusion from the gear shift and imbedded glass; my knees hit the dashboard and my feet had been depressing the clutch and the brake. My right foot was the worst with horrible swelling, contusions, and two fractured toes. I couldn’t walk.

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I got stitches on my middle finger, which I quickly called Frankenfinger. I got a prescription for pain meds. Then I quickly got a sense of my physical pain and mental trauma.

Getting into dad’s truck wasn’t very fun, but the drive home might have been worse. I wouldn’t let him turn right on red in an intersection. I wanted him to go about 10mph under the speed limit. I gripped the door handle so tight, my knuckles were white. Suddenly, I was afraid to be in a vehicle.

Then it wasn’t just being in a vehicle that scared me. It was not being able to walk. It was my heart stopping when I heard screeching tires or a horn outside my apartment. It was checking the lock on my door three times before bed, knowing I wouldn’t be able to fight back or defend myself if someone were to break in because I was already hurt. It was needing everyone to text me when they made it somewhere, saying ‘drive safe’ like it was a desperate plea, not just a suggestion. I was sure everyone I knew and loved was going to be in a car accident. It was being so angry. So. angry. Seeing my car at the impound was… an experience. Now it was in broad daylight.

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A year later, I still have anxiety: I worry about my boyfriend driving to and from work, I worry about him crossing the street to take the dog out at night. I don’t trust anyone on the road. I never drove on dad’s street again. I still don’t like hearing screeching tires or horns. Every time I come to a light, I have to keep myself from watching the rear-view mirror. I’m constantly ready for evasive maneuvers. I finally had to accept the fact that if I’m meant to die in my car, I’m meant to die in my car. I could have died that night, but I didn’t. I walked away. I lived, and now I’m living. I owe all thanks to God and my MINI, my dear British Chap who sacrificed himself for me.

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I’ve got a new MINI now. I call him Richard. I’m living with my wonderful boyfriend, the man I was lucky enough to live to meet. We moved up to Saint Paul and got the cutest puppy in the world, Olive Adventure. I’m still seeing a chiropractor for my neck and back, my fractured toes still give me trouble every now and then when I run or exercise. I can’t do much on my knees. My chest bones pop occasionally. And I’ve still got my Frankenfinger.

As for the driver, well, he got a bit of punishment after sobering up in jail that night.

I wonder if he’ll think about me today around 930pm.

He’ll be thinking about me soon enough when I start recouping damages.

What Is Life

Almost a month ago, I spent my last night in Omaha.

Most of my things were moved already, and all that remained were a few odds and ends, and my furniture.

The morning of the big move, I was seriously anxious. What was going to go wrong? What was going to get broken? What if this happens? What if that happens? I was also very emotional, even though I tried my hardest not to be.

My parents showed up to say goodbye; mom was a bit weepy and, of course, my dad says the things I always need to hear: I am worthy, I deserve everything I want, I can do anything I want to do, and I am loved. So, there went the tears. My brother showed up a bit later and stayed with me until just before I hit the road. He helped calm me down and let me know on his way out how well the moving truck was being packed. Phew.

The drive up here went by quickly and slowly at the same time. I got caught in five o’clock traffic just two miles from my exit and I was absolutely livid. I just wanted to be there!

That evening, and the week after, are a total blur of unpacking, buying shelving units and other fun IKEA things, building said things, hanging photos, organizing the kitchen, organizing the closets, etc. Oh, and sleeping poorly because one huge window in our bedroom was missing blinds. Waking with the sun every morning, regardless of when I went to sleep the night before, was aggravating as hell. And didn’t really restore me for a new day of work.

By the next week, we were already looking at puppies to adopt. I got Andrew caught up in the search and essentially all of our texts consisted of puppy photos all day. We knew we wanted a bigger dog and we wanted to adopt a rescue. In looking at the adoption process, I got discouraged. An application, an interview, references, a meeting, a home visit?! Jesus Christ, are we adopting a child? Applying for a government job? I had no idea it was so thorough and difficult. I understood and completely support the method behind the madness, but for those of us normal, decent human beings who aren’t going to chain the dog up outside 24/7… ugh.

We ended up applying for a dog that we totally fell in love with and then got denied because another couple was ahead of us in the process. Then we applied for a couple more and the same thing happened. At this point, I’m going, Jesus Christ, I’d almost rather pay double to just get one from a pet shop. But instead, we applied for a few more.

Finally (I say, finally; it was probably like, within a couple days), we got invited to go meet one of the puppies. He was adorable and cuddly and I think Andrew was pretty goddamn set on him. We fell asleep that night discussing ridiculous names, such as: Sterling The University of Nebraska Cornhuskers versus The University of Iowa Hawkeyes… [last name].

We communicated to the foster mom and the lady from the shelter that we indeed wanted this little pup… and then we never heard anything from the shelter.

Then, in true things-happen-for-a-reason fashion, the day I was bitching about the lack of communication and consideration, I got a call from another foster mom about another puppy we’d applied for. Apparently the people who wanted her were having trouble coming up with the adoption fee (red flag, much?), so if we want her, she’s ours.

I think this was a Wednesday. We set up a meeting for Friday, we filmed a home video (in lieu of a home visit) Thursday, we drove an hour to meet her Friday, and that night, we brought her home.

Meet Olive Adventure (and insert heart-eyes emoji):
Olive Adventure

She’s a (now) nine-week old Shepherd Mix. We aren’t sure what she’s mixed with, but we’re pretty sure that it’s a wirehair of some kind. She’s a joy and a laugh and a little shit and a snuggler and a whiner and so sociable and sweet. She’s super outgoing; she’ll go up to anyone and any dog. She wants to play with everyone. She doesn’t like being hot and will whine (kinda like me) and she has recently started fording the stream in the park across the street.
Olive in the stream

Andrew and I are now ‘daddy’ and ‘mommy’ and we’re just totally in love. (Cue: ‘awww’)

We’ve had her a week and a half now and, well, she’s exhausting. ‘Daddy’ is at work five days a week, so ‘mommy’ has to do the most potty breaks and cleaning up accidents and trying to get her to stop biting or chewing on absolutely everything. Not to mention, she’s up with Andrew when he gets up for work (somewhere in the neighborhood of 6am). So yeah, I’m getting a spa afternoon on Thursday lol

Adding to the frustration, I’m getting paranoid about my dwindling savings, so I’ve resumed the job hunt… again. I’m being fairly goddamn picky because I just am, but I want it to be within walking distance (which isn’t a huge ask, seeing as we’re downtown), part-time so I can be home with bb most of the time, and not a receptionist or food service job. Actually, what I’d really like to do is some writing from home. If only I could get myself to finish that ‘novel’ I started.

I’ve also resumed the fitness journey. Buzzfeed posted that circuit workout a couple weeks ago and I’m on the third week today. You’re supposed to up the weight each week; I started with 10lb dumbbells. Because the tiny rec in my building didn’t have 12s, I had to go straight to 15s… And to be consistent, I need to use 20s tonight. I’m a tad nervous I won’t be able to do it all, because I also have to up the reps by two. I don’t know how much physical change I’ll see in two more weeks, and I haven’t weighed myself because fuck the scale, but who knows. I’ll prob just keep going with it and eventually be curling 50s LOL

Anyway, I love Saint Paul. I keep saying it’s like Omaha and London had a baby because it really does feel like home and the city I adore. Our apartment is brilliantly located a block from the train and ten meters from the park, a few blocks from the river and a half-mile from Starbucks (win). There are a bunch of microbreweries and awesome restaurants within walking distance and anything else is on the trainline. I probably came up here with 6100 miles on my car, and I noticed the odometer read 6171 today. So, about seventy miles in almost a month? Not fucking bad.

The only driving I do now is to the chiropractor, which is still only about seven miles away. It’s a different technique than I was getting in Omaha, but apparently, this is the next step in my treatment that makes the most sense. Here’s to hoping I get back to 100% after a couple months of this. I got really emotional when I had my consultation with the new bonebreak. It just dredges up all of the accident memories and memories of all the pain. It’s almost been a year and I’m still dealing with everything. Thank God for Andrew, seriously. What a loving, caring, thoughtful support system I have. I’m embarrassingly lucky to have him. And my family, holy shit.

Tell me, what is my life without your love? Tell me, who am I without you by my side?

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