Sunday, April 29, 2012

This post is awesome.


There was an article circulating the internet a while back that basically said the reward of parenthood is so low, that parents must convince themselves they are happy and fulfilled, even though they are not. (Read it here.) That it is actually not as fantastic as people say, because those people are lying to themselves.

I want to disagree, but I can't. Because I may just have convinced myself too.

I've wondered the same thing about my new job lately. I'm really excited about the job and the company, and find myself talking about how awesome it is every chance I get. And I do believe it. But what if you started a new job at a company that you think isn't all that great? After you've given up another job, tenure and benefits, and announced that you are now committing most of your waking hours to this new venture, can you allow yourself to believe it's not better?

What parts of your life do you think are awesome, because for self-preservation you simply have to believe it? Your relationship? Friendships? That new car you worked so hard to purchase? The outfit you shopped for days to find for a big night out?

And having said that, doesn't just believing something is awesome make it so? If I think my three year old Kia Optima is the best car I've ever had, then it IS. And if it is the best car I've ever had, does it matter that much that it's not a Lexus or a Ferrari?

Here's where you can get yourself in trouble. If I decided that I couldn't believe my car was awesome, because there are possibly other cars out there that would be better, then I'd never be happy. But if I say to myself, "My car is great, because I think it's a cute little sedan, and I like the color, and the gas mileage is good, and it's the first car I bought brand new off the lot, which was a great accomplishment for me!" Then darn it, my car is awesome for all those reasons.

Is it possible for anything to be empirically awesome?

I've decided that it is of no use to over-think it. If you believe it's awesome to be a parent, live in the midwest, or  have been blessed with a knack for grammar, then it IS. Don't question it. Make your decision and embrace it.

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

I quit.

I've never been one of those people that dreams of quitting their job in some big scene, or telling my boss exactly what bad things I may think of her, or by storming out shouting "I quit!" Mainly because I don't like to burn bridges, and I don't like people to not like me, and I've never felt so wronged by an employer that I felt any kind of action like that is justified.


My friends have all asked me how it went when I gave my two week notice to my employer on Monday, and I didn't have any dramatic story to tell. I happened to have my annual review scheduled that same day, so I waited for my manager to go through my entire review before I told her. It was a bit awkward for me to let her try and tell me how to improve areas for next year, but I really wanted to hear her review of my performance without it being biased by the news that I was leaving. I could have saved her the trouble, but I was curious!

She took the news well...she didn't seemed surprised at all. She made some comments like, "Well, I knew you weren't that happy" which is true but made me feel bad that it was obvious. She also said she was, "happy and sad" about my leaving. Presumably happy for me but sad to see me go, but she didn't actually say that. She may have meant that she's happy I'm leaving so she can get a replacement with a lower salary and help her budget, but sad she'll be short a banker for a while. Who knows. When I told my colleagues, they just sort of said, "Ok." I expected (or maybe hoped) they'd make a big deal, beg me to stay, shed a few  tears.... but nope. Haha! I knew there'd be no tears, but I did think they'd seem to care more. But honestly if any of them were leaving, I'd probably react the same way.

After five and a half years at this company, it's strange to imagine saying I work somewhere else. But I'm very excited about this change! I've known for a long time that this wasn't the career for me, I just never knew what the right career was. Recently a dear friend gave me a book to read about finding a career, and through the exercises I found a few qualities that I really wanted in a career, and I believe I've found them in my new job: I want to help people, I want to do something that makes a difference in people's lives, and I wanted a schedule that allowed better opportunities for my family.

I'm so excited for all the big changes in my life this year! First up, a career change, and then in two months, a wedding!

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Cuss Words

I got called the B word at work today by a customer angry about her overdraft fees. This is not all that unusual an occurrence actually, which is sad. I wasn't rude or anything, just couldn't solve her problem like she wanted and it had to be my fault somehow, in her mind.

Working in a bank is frankly no fun. Some people may like it, but try as I may, I tend to struggle in seeing the good parts and often see the ugly ones. It's not ALL bad, but it certainly doesn't feel like I want it to. Makes me wanna say cuss words lots of days. Sorta like that lady. I just can't really blame anyone like she did.

My teenage daughter got grounded this week for using cuss words in her text messages. Not a fun situation for any of us. But it got me thinking about my own explicit language. I use expletives more than I should. As I told my daughter, it's possible to be clever and witty and cool without using such words. So why is it that when I'm worked up for some reason, I freely let the cuss words fly? Do I think it's cool? Does using the F word in adjective form make me come across as passionate, or crass and classless?

I think perhaps I should be evaluating my OWN language as I'm trying to monitor my daughter's. I've been working on it, and have found that replacing the S word with "poop" is funny and, in my opinion, cute. It's so juvenile that it's quite possibly endearing. Sometimes I say, "poopy" even, and chuckle a little to myself.

Readers, do you cuss much? Ever let an expletive fly in the wrong situation?

Sunday, April 1, 2012

Reasons

Tonight at dinner, I started to talk about how amazing my fiance is, and then thanks to two glasses of wine, I think it ended up sounding like, "well, he buys me presents and is really nice and stuff."

That's not really what I was going for in that message. But, you know, wine and everything...

I need to write vows in the near future for our wedding ceremony, and I haven't really started planning for that yet, so here I will attempt to right the wrong I did to my relationship at dinner and also inspire myself for future vow-writing sessions. I really don't know how to make this a post that will benefit anyone other than me, but encourage you to read on anyway for purely selfish reasons. ;)

Reasons Matt is the bomb:
- He surprises me with little presents that he knows I will love, for no reason at all.
- He makes my kids laugh, and thinks of them without prompting, picking up a video game he knows they'll like, or treats at the grocery, or tickets to a movie.
- He helps them with their homework and sits up with me to discuss parenting problems and help me solve them.
- He tells me I'm beautiful all the time.
- He plays with my hair (which is something I absolutely love) frequently, without being asked and without acting like it's a chore.
- When we get upset with each other, he will talk with me about the source of the problem, where we had communication issues, and how we can fix it.
- When we are in a fight, he uses the "recovery" tactics we learned in our relationship books and tries to stop the fight from escalating, even when I'm still trying to yell and be mad.
- He enthusiastically supports things that I want to do that may or may not be silly, like buying a domain name for my simple little blog, just because I want to.
- He promises to take me to France.
- He makes up silly songs in the morning to make me laugh even though I'm a grump in the morning.
- He acts like my crazy neuroses are cute.
- He gives great hugs, and is the Best. Kisser. Ever.
- He talks in cutesy voices to our pets.
- He tells me I need to relax more.
- He is more supportive and kind and thoughtful than anyone I've ever known.

This is just the list I came up with of the top of my head in like five minutes! Imagine how long it could be if I devoted more time? :)

I am so very grateful I found this guy.