Idiocy

I can be quite the idiot. Like, I should get a special prize kind of idiot.

My idiocy is never more apparent than when I’m trying to rush through something. it’s like, “That’s future Audrey’s problem” is my prevailing mantra (Present Day Audrey is a real dick to Future Audrey). And Thursday was no exception.

I was running late (typical) to catch my bus, and thus was rushing through closing up the clinic. The last thing I do before I leave is wash out the milk jug. When I got to the kitchen, someone else was at the sink, washing a stack of plates. I didn’t want to wait for her to finish, because I was already late, and I only had like, 2 minutes before I was really late, so I saw the boiling water tap in the tiny sink next to the girl washing dishes, and thought “oh I’ll just rinse it out with that tap, and I won’t have to wait. Cool!”  And so, I went to the tap.

IF I had taken even a split second to think about things, I would have realised the following:
– the boiling water tap produces BOILING WATER. That’s what it does.
– the milk jug has a round, flat spout and a lid that fits into the spout, that you have to flip up with your thumb using the little thumb lever
– the boiling water tap isn’t very tall, so you would have to put the jug under the tap before you turn on the tap, otherwise the BOILING water will bounce off the flat round spout and splash BOILING water everywhere
– you’re already really late, so what’s being a few more minutes late
You could politely ask if you could cut in for a second because you’re running late (nope, that’s terrible manners and I can’t do that)

But no, I marched to the boiling tap like I was on a clear mission. I turned the tap on first, put the jug under the tap, and THE HOTTEST WATER CAN GET – BOILING HOT water shot everywhere – across my hand, into the dishes in the drainer, and possibly on the girl standing next to me. It was the worst .3 seconds of my life. I instantly turned the tap off and the rational side of my brain – which was suspiciously absent 10 seconds ago but was now forefront and center — was all “SEE I TOLD YOU DON’T YOU FEEL STUPID”.

The girl next to me said, “Oh my god are you ok? That’s boiling water.”
“Yeah, it is. I’m sorry, I didn’t think it’d be boiling straight away” (this, this is what I came up with?)
“Nope, that’s literally all it does.”
“Welp, I know that now!” (once again, this, this is what I came up with)

I put the jug under the tap AGAIN (to save face?) and then put only a little water in the jug and this time didn’t spray everyone with SCALDING HOT BOILING WATER. I dumped the water out, put the jug in the drainer promising I’d give it a proper soapy clean tomorrow and ran out of there as fast as I could, all the while holding my not even burnt hand as my bully brain pummelled me with omg that is the worst thing to ever happen ever you are now the laughing stock of all the doctors you work with.

When I got outside, it was dark, raining and windy, and I was braving the elements with my shitty $5 umbrella. I got to the big intersection I have to cross before I get to the bus stop, and out of habit, I walked straight up to the edge of the curb to wait for the light to change. As I saw a car coming toward us, my rational brain finally kicked in and said “WHOA BACK AWAY FROM THE CURB OR THAT CAR WILL SPLASH THE HECK OUT OF YOU” and I turned around and took a few steps away from the splash zone, thanking my brain for being on it’s A-game.

There was a woman standing near me with her giant umbrella, who had watched me walk to the edge and back. Great, someone else saw me fuck up, I thought, as we made eye contact for a second. She smiled and said “Good thinking! Yesterday I got splashed with a wall of water that was as tall as me!” I laughed and said something about idiot brains. She laughed and agreed, and I told her the water tap story. “Some days, huh??” she said as we crossed the street. And as we parted ways, she said “Get home safe, ok!”

I don’t know if it was the commiseration, or just the niceness of this complete stranger, but I instantly felt better. Some strangers are sent to confirm your idiocy, and some are sent to say “hey, me too. It happens.” You can guess which one I appreciate more.

Some days, huh??

Edit: two hours after posting this blog, I locked myself out of the apartment and had to take an Uber to the city so I could get Joel’s keys. #somedayshuh

Don’t be dick to yourself – and other New Year resolutions

On New Year’s Eve, our group started talking about resolutions. My friend Michael asked me about mine. I proudly said, “I resolve not to have any resolutions.” to which he said, “but that is a resolution.” and I was all “Well, shit.”

As I’ve said before, me making a list of resolutions is like me making a list of things I’ll only get worse at/not do. But this doesn’t stop me from thinking about them. And they’re always the same goals/desires:

  • spend more time pursuing dreams, less time worrying about day job
  • eat better so my arteries won’t crap out by the time I’m 50
  • move more so I don’t go into cardiac arrest when I’m climbing stairs; also so pants will stop not fitting
  • take better care of my skin so I won’t look like I’m still in puberty
  • read more so I don’t rot my brain
  • do more so I don’t one day die with regrets (spoiler alert: likely to happen no matter what I do)
  • make a billion dollars so I can stay home and not have to worry about putting on real pants

2016 was, for the most part, an extremely hard year. Going into January, I was super confident. I thought, “this is going to be a good year. I have my new, awesome job where I get to contribute creatively and work with great people, my hair is growing out (this is important), my office is organised, I have a writing plan, and everything will be gravy. I’m happy, I’m content, and I feel like I’m on the right track.”

And then, it hit me. I woke up on the last day of my Christmas holiday with an unshakable sense of impending doom. And on January 4 I woke up in an anxiety attack that didn’t dissolve for almost a week. So I went back to the doctor for a benzo script, after close to two years of not needing xanax. And that sucked.

I thought I was just anxious because we had a big month at work coming up – there was a lot at stake, so I was nervous/excited to be a part of it. But January blurred into February and February blurred into March. March blurred into April. April into May. It never got easier. I wasn’t sleeping without having nightmares. I dreaded every single day. And at some point I came to and realised that all my savings had been burned through, the apartment was constantly a mess, our bills were late, and I found myself paralysed without my phone, jumping at every notification as if someone’s life depended on it. It was easier to count the days that didn’t end in some form of panic. Every weekend included some sort of sobbing breakdown, either to Joel or to my Mom or in text messages to my friends. I just couldn’t control myself.

It was hard to admit to myself that I was back in a shit place. I spent so much of 2015 in denial that I was so homesick it spun me into depression, and there I was, robbed of 6 months because I refused to admit defeat. I mean, I knew I was good at standing in my own way, but it turns out I’m really good at putting myself in harm’s way to prove a point to no one.

After I quit my job and took some time off, I realised my two rough patches were the result of me pushing myself for a career that I knew I wasn’t suited for, but that I felt I needed to be suited for, and thusly wouldn’t let myself quit.  I realised I have to listen to my own red flags – it doesn’t matter how cool your job is, how awesome the people you work with are, if the stress makes you go back on medication and back into therapy, it’s not a good fit.

So this year, I would like to focus on one things only:

do not be a passive aggressive asshole to self

And really, that’s it. I don’t think of this as a resolution, because it’s not like losing 20lbs or drinking less alcohol. It’s the “be kind to yourself” bullshit that’s not actually bullshit but a really important life skill.

Naturally, I want to develop better habits and achieve things, too. But I’m not going to make a giant posted list, because I’ll feel like I have to achieve them all RIGHT NOW or I’ll be a failure. So I’m going to take it one step at a time and you know – not be an asshole to myself about it. I need to get myself to a place of stability and consistency before I can stack myself full of expectations and plans.

I’m taking this year one month at a time. For January, my goal was to find a more interactive writer’s group and a class of some sort. I got the Master Class for Christmas and I’ve already started it, so now all I need to do is find an additional group to join. I don’t know what my goal is for February, because I haven’t gotten there yet. That’s February’s problem.

See? I’m already applying my resolution. (ha)

ALL THAT BEING SAID – here are things that Joel and I plan to make happen and that I’m REALLY EXCITED ABOUT for 2017:

  • ADOPTING A DOG
  • Taking driver’s safety course and getting more experience on the road so that we can
  • Go on non-staycation holiday! (although Joel and I had 4 uninterrupted days together for the first time in 2 years and it was fabulous. I’d rather have the time in the Blue Mountains or on a beach somewhere tho)
  • ADOPTING A DOG
  • Upgrading to a queen size bed
  • ADOPTING A DOG
  • Becoming an Australian resident and finally putting all the visa jibba jabba behind us (fingers crossed this happens around July)
  • ADOPTING A DOG
  • Investing more time in myself
  • ADOPTING A DOG (my biological clock is barking)
  • make a billion dollars so I can stay home and not have to worry about putting on real pants

I mean, not having to put real pants on every day is the dream.

Set the bar high, folks. And be nice to yourself.

Happy 2017!