Friday, January 28, 2011

A Moratorium

The inspiration for No Left Turn stemmed from watching the movie Julie & Julia. Like Julie, I was a young woman, discontent with the job I held and yearning to make public my passion and talent for writing. In Julie & Julia, Julie turns to blogging to her quench her thirst. Inspired, I was logged on and started my own blog.

I had no idea, at first, what theme I'd choose to guide my blog. But after attempts to channel my literary antics toward other topics, the undertones of my life kept surging within me, begging to be released. I couldn't ignore the pounding ache I'd awake with each day caused by the withdrawal of my college addiction. For four years, I had rode along the swell of academia, getting high off the fumes of dreams. The blog slowly allowed me to seep into what I thought would be a recovery...

There's a point toward of the end of Julie & Julia where Julie breaks down. The momentum has shifted, and suddenly she had allowed the release of the blog to consume her. Much like Julie, No Left Turn had consumed me. Instead of providing an introspective release, I internalized No Left Turn and the falls along the way became that much more amplified. It was after one considerable emotional breakdown when I realized I'd be 24 in a few months, and I was no closer than I'd been at 23... or 22... that I finally decided to pull the plug on the blog.

I don't plan to stop writing. I've been keeping diaries and journals since I was eight years old. In 5th grade, I raised my hand and announced to my entire class that I was an aspiring author. Writing is a part of me, and that passion could never be eroded. But the outlet has failed to ignite me with positive energy. And so, it is time to take a moratorium.

At the end of L'auberge Espagnole (one the BEST movies I've ever seen), Xavier realizes that he is not defined by only one part of his life- not his job, not where he lives, how he looks, dresses- he is defined by his journey in life. And even as a man, he still is the little boy who dreamed of writing books.

When you are moving toward an is very important to pay attention to the road. It is the road that teaches us the best way to get there, and the road enriches us as we walk its length.
– Paulo Coelho’s The Pilgrimage

Sunday, January 16, 2011


It's a fairly common analogy to compare the process of interviewing to the process of dating. In both, two parties meet together to discuss views, interests and qualifications for a long-term partnership. Should the meeting go well, additional meetings are arranged to continue to investigate the potential for a relationship akin to that which both desire. If in the end if both find that the talents and skills on either end meet their needs, a relationship is established where the two continue to act in concert until cause for termination arises.

The similarities are infinite: beginning with having the proper chemistry (do you and your interviewer get along?) to physical appearance (any piercings, tattoos? tidy hair?) to the touchy subject of finances. Though most relationships don't require a signed contract prior to commencement, marriages are consummated with the exchanging of vows where each party commits to a doctrine of promises set to preserve their unity.

In the past few years, dating has become laborious, and sites like eHarmony and have sprung up to alleviate the hunt. Users create profiles to describe themselves and can search through various parameters to hone in on counterparts that possess those desired features. One party can reach out to the other allowing the second party to review and assess if their own needs could be fulfilled.

While online sites like Monster do share some similarities to the dating sites, the conversations tend to be one way. In this market, job openings appear to be like the "unattainable hottie" that appears on the dating site as if to taunt all those seeking. The "hottie" reviews innumerable responses yet rarely concedes to respond with minimal to any feedback. Yet despite a series of rejections, I trudge on, always battling the conflicting feelings of aspirations for the best, yet a sense of disparity that allows me to glance at the profiles beneath my set of standards.

As I gaze out into the stars, I wonder, will I ever find the job? And I whisper into the night sky,

{ "O job, job, wherefore art thou job?" }

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Love, Life & The Beatles

It seems to me that most of what I've learned about life could have been learned from listening The Beatles.
For example, the two principle lessons learned this year:

1. All you need is love: After all the months of self-induced turmoil, wishing I could follow my heart and pursue my dreams, I did. But despite initial aspirations for that passionate change to be tied to my career, I was compelled to move to San Diego for {love} of a boy, not a job.

There is a lot of criticism for anyone, but especially for girls, who step back from their careers and follow their heart. Society, for whatever reason, regards most highly those that neglect their personal lives in order to dig their heels in the corporate realm. Those that forgo individual success in order to pursue love are often dismissed as flighty and frivolous. When initially debating on whether or not to move for Jeff, I worried that I'd get locked into that category and lose credibility in my career. Surely, there will still be many that frown upon my decision. However, I'm confident that I will one day achieve that role where salary and passion align in absolute synergy, and the best part will be having someone to share my happiness with.

2. From Beautiful Boy-

{{ "Life is what happens to you while you're busy making other plans" }}

I have been a habitual planner my entire life. For whatever reason, I find such therapy in creating task lists to map out a basic agenda for the day (as menial as daily household chores and eating meals!) While the skill comes in handy when scoping out the logistics for events and cramped vacation schedules, I've had to step back and refrain from indulging too deeply in this habit. Despite my planning, I fell in love, and consequently fell off course. I didn't plan for this; it just... happened.

Life is a lot like surfing. (I can't surf, but I live by the beach now, so I feel it apt to relate the two.) You can be the most talented surfer, but unless you know how to wait for the right wave, you'll always catch yourself paddling through the best opportunities rather than riding them. As I continue to move through life, refining my skills and practicing as much as I can, I have to remember to be patient: I can't predict when I'll nail that perfect job opportunity any better than I can predict when I'll catch that perfect wave. But sometimes while we sit out there in the ocean, the tide pulls along in different directions, landing us further along the shore than we had planned, yet somehow right where we belong.

Monday, January 10, 2011

Not Alone

{I'm not alone}

Is it a plague of my generation? Is it just our age? Regardless of what this resistance to growing up is, I am not the only one experiencing it. You ask for proof? Check out my best friend's blog: another young adult searching to comprehend life and where to go next.

Not Yet a Woman

It's been difficult lately to find time to wail about the woes of not having the dream job when I've been fulfilling another life-long dream: love.

This weekend Jeff and I packed my life in San Francisco into boxes and bags and traveled to San Diego, where the streets are lined with palm trees, sunshine and our future together. Until permanent housing in found, we squeeze into his current room, rearranging furniture and flooding the closet with my clothing, pillows and blankets as we merged both of our lives into one. We are now officially "living in sin," as many would define it (since we don't sport wedding rings or share one surname) yet the truth of the matter is, there can't be anything sinful about it: a promise, regardless if it lacks a band a diamond, is a promise.

After we finished unloading and organizing, we collapsed and watched the end of the National Championship BCS bowl. It was the end of a very "grown up" day. After work, we'd spent our evenings doing laundry, cleaning and preparing dinner. Despite the simplicity of the evening, it is everything I hoped for since I was a little girl for my "adult life". Though I don't think I can remember a happier day, I suddenly worried that now we were officially adults.

I glanced over at Jeff and asked, "does this mean we have to be grown up?"

He smirked and answered, "we are who we are: one day we will be grown up, and the next, just kids."

Growing up, no matter how "grown up" your life becomes, never entirely takes over- at least, for me, not yet. Even Peter and Wendy, committed to staying children, can't entirely fight the sensation of love and growing up. Growing up doesn't happen systematically, that each ounce of adult added enters, a piece of child exits. It's an internal inflation where the two exist in a enduring symbiotic relationship.

And since I packed up my Barbies, I have been not a girl, not yet a woman. And now, a decade later, I'm still not a girl, not yet a woman.

{not sure I ever expected to be citing Miss Brittney on this site...}

Monday, January 3, 2011

Tpoys aer'nt so bad

Tonight while browsing the internet, searching for inspiration on current events to help spawn ideas on journalistic writing samples, I found a humorous yet fascinating blurb about the typo, and how minor its effect is:

I am guilty of the typo. There are times where I get too enthused on the subject and the words as a whole that I browse over my blogs quickly as I check for errors. (No excuses: I admit my weaknesses.) However, this does explain why it proves difficult to quickly pull out the typos in a piece, especially when I know how I want it to read.

Comforts of Responsibility

The holidays are over, and the grind of the work week is once again us.... or at least for those not picking up their lives and moving.

Reflecting on the time off, one friend noted how she was able to sleep 11-12 hours each night she was home with her family. "It was nice," she sighed. "I finally didn't have to worry since someone else was worrying about me."

It is nice. Not worry about locking the door at night, because Dad does that. Not having to turn off all the lights because Mom and Dad do that. Not having to stew over what you'll make for dinner because Mom already has the menu outlined for the week. Not having to plan or schedule what you'll be doing each day because Grandma, Aunt Linnea and the Weavers have already set up dinners, gatherings and parties respectively.

Each year as we get older, we are endowed with a bit more responsibility. First we are charged with remembering our lunch money and library books, then what time soccer practice is, or budgeting our allowance to fill our gas tank. In college, the lucky lot that are spared from managing student loans still gain the burdens of class schedules, applying for internships, recitations, studying and making sure the rent gets in on time. And though I can remember experiencing a slight sensation of stress at each stage of light when contemplating the next jump in responsibility (for example, my jaw dropped in kindergarten when I learned that in first grade I'd be liable for late fees on library books), though once I was steeped into that next stage, I found myself comfortable in the new role. There's a warmth in the feeling of independence and the capability of doing everything on your own.

Even though I found myself sauntering about my home town carefree, and leisurely drifting in and out of impromptu naps when food comas attacked, returning to the semblance of a normal routine feels good. And even though my days are cluttered with stuffing boxes and tearful goodbyes to friends, the cacophonous screech of the alarm almost sounds comforting.