Thursday, April 26, 2012

Bug Man

Here's the thing about crazy people.

I LOVE them.

I was having this little "la cuca racha" (I can't spell in Espanol) problem at the old assisted living facility-style condo, so the bug man comes to spray. And....




He was 6'6" and kind of looked like my Uncle Randy. He was one of those guys who was big and strong and had gray hair and a gap in his teeth and kind of had that George Clooney look. But he also had tattoos and FOUR silver rings on his fingers that had skulls on them.

So I ask him if he's in a band or if he rides motorcycles. Because guys who have gray hair who have tattoos and skull rings are in bands or ride motorcycles and hang out at clubs like that place on "Pee Wee's Big Adventure" where Pee Wee dances to "Tequila."

So he proceeds to tell me that he wears his skull rings to remind him of the 4 times that his temper got him in trouble and he almost killed someone.

Holy crap.

The bug man is going to smash my head in right after he sprays for roaches.

Then he gets real chatty and tells me all about how he has a mom and a sister and how he was 6'4" and 180 lbs in high school but now he's 6'6" and 260. Then he opened my sliding glass doors and said, "I'm gonna do somethin real special. JUST FOR YOU." So I'm thinking that he's going to yank one of the glass doors off and chop me in half with it.

He says, "I'm gonna spray right outside your bedroom window."


Then he goes to the kitchen and gets on his knees to spray under the sink. He says, "I bet you've never had a man get on his knees so quick for you, eh?"

And I just kind of laughed, because when I'm scared that bug man is going to chop my head off with a sliding glass door and he's wearing rings representing the 4 times he's almost killed someone due to lack of anger management skills, I just kind of laugh.

THEN, he proceeds to tell me, "You should have some man come over and worship you on his knees. Every day. Hell, I'll do it." And he starts bowing down and lifting his arms up and down, while holding his bug sprayer thing.

I wanted to die.

Stuff like that humiliates me. I don't know how to handle it.

Then he starts saying that he has a 14 year old daughter and he's 41 years old and he is the funniest man IN THE WORLD. Then he shows me a picture on his phone that says "take out Monday and Tuesday, and the rest of the calendar says WTF!"

And then as he was headed out the door, I said, "Well thank you for saving us from the roaches! You did a very thorough job."

And he said, "Well, I told you I'm good at what I do. I'm only good at two things, and killin' bugs is one of them."

I hate it when people try to set you up to ASK something, so usually I just state the obvious.

"Do you want me to ask you what the other thing is that you do well?"

And he said, "not unless your mind is in the gutter."

So I closed the storm door as fast as I could just in case this guy was a serial killer/rapist/roach killer/bug man.

The last time a guy came over here to fix our garbage disposal, he wound up going down to his truck, bringing his guitar up to our unit, and serenading my roommate and me.

Crazy people. Love 'em.

Thursday, October 27, 2011

It's All Good

I haven’t written in forever because my whole life is like Jenga, and each little piece is all stacked up into a nice, neat tower, and I’m scared if I take one block out to make time to write or work out or anything that I don’t have much time for, all of the other pieces will fall all over the floor.
So here’s to falling on the floor!

Things have been really good for a while now. My life got significantly better in April, and things have been pretty uphill since then. Don’t get me wrong, now, I’m exhausted all the time, and those old anxiety demons have reared their projectile vomiting heads a few times since I started school again, but those are minor battles when compared to the two years prior. Ughhhhh. I don’t even like thinking about that stretch between 09 and 10.

Life is finally taking some shape. Things are headed in a clear direction. I’m working towards a goal. I’m engaged in project work. I’m doing research. I’m working with kids. And I’m still making time for some fun things here and there. It’s nice to go to sleep every night and realize that I did something with my life today. There are few crappier feelings than lying there in the dark and thinking, “What the hell did I do with my life today? I can’t think of one single thing…”
Though I am content, I am currently experiencing the post-mid semester slump. I had my meltdown last week after I pseudo failed a test, but it was good to pencil in a little crying jag to release some of that pent up intensity. Other than that, I’ve held it together well. I’m just POOPED. All I can think about is taking a 20 hour nap.

I don’t like Christmas much, and I never really have. I love the idea of it, but the reality of it overwhelms me. I know that I physically present a little bit like a crazy person, but I really don’t like to be over-stimulated, and too much activity sort of makes me want to puke or start crying or just freeze up and pretend to be dead so everyone will leave me alone (I’ve always thought it’d be funny if people just tried to “play dead” any time they wanted somebody to go away. Steve Correll does that in “Dinner for Schmucks.” Hilarious!). It feels like the metropolitan statistical area grows about 40 million during the month of December, and I hate being elbow-to-elbow with fat moms in Hobby Lobby. I can’t stand it. I hate how they will bump you in the ass with their basket filled with sparkly little Santas and all kinds of glittery poinsettias, and they don’t even act like they know they did it, but you know they know. They also talk REALLY LOUDLY on their stupid cell phones. Anyway, back to Christmas. This go round, I’m looking forward to it. I’m looking forward to a little break from school and work. I’m looking forward to baking gingerbread cookies and making lewd little ginger bread people, using sprinkles and icing to create their inappropriate anatomy. I’m looking forward to watching “It’s a Wonderful Life” by myself, since everyone I know hates it, and crying my head off when Jimmy Stewart is hugging and kissing his wife and kids and he’s finally grateful for his lot in life. I’m looking forward to drinking Big Doug’s eggnog. I’m looking forward to taking a few things in stride, and not worrying so much about deadlines and projects. I think this year will be different.

My perspective on things has changed a lot, and I really started to feel like myself again in the spring. Now I feel more like me than ever, and it feels good. I needed a while to restore and reshape and get back on track, and I am finally there. I feel independent and motivated, and I’m happy to feel like everything is working out.

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Back from CALI, CALI

I got back from L.A. yesterday. I had a great time. It was so good to see people that I knew when I was there. It was nice to be able to drive around and know where I was going. It was great to be around people who knew me and loved me based on who I was in L.A. at that time in my life. But what was really good was knowing that I made the right choice. I got closure.

I sort of hate the word "closure" because it's so clinical. It's like saying "they have issues." What the crap does that even mean? Anyway, I tend to second guess EVERYTHING I do, which is completely annoying to myself and most people who know me. I try to make decisions based on what's right, whatever that means, and I try to mull over a decision until I'm good and ready and have come to a verdict that makes the most sense. I don't make rash decisions and I don't make impulsive ones.

My choice to move home was one of the hardest ones I've ever had to make. Moving away to California was the first time that I got to establish myself as an adult. I got to leave behind all of the things that I wanted to forget and I got to build my life based on new goals and expectations. The thing is, though, after a while, I started to change. I resented a lot of my past. I was bitter at a lot of people. I got really hard.

L.A. brought out strength in me and it taught me that I could handle things on my own. It also taught me that relying on myself was self destructive. You have to have a support group to stay afloat, and you have to be willing to accept the support that other people offer you. Most of all, though, you have to remember that God is in control. I forgot that part for a long time.

I moved back to Memphis and was so depressed and defeated that I couldn't be who I knew I was. I was overwhelmed and depleted. I was taking so many steps backward. I was living with my parents again, I was in a lot of debt, I felt like a loser... I couldn't reconnect with people or give my relationship a fair shot. I couldn't remember what it was like to be happy. I was working in a job under a pervert boss who was banging a 24 year old girl in our office. I was broke and empty and alone, and I kept thinking that I made the wrong choice.

I met this older guy who kept telling me, "Life is about relationships. You have to focus on those, and not where you live." After a while, that made sense to me.

Things started to change. I'm not sure when the turning point happened, but God scooped me up out of my depression and isolation. My prayer, over and over again, was "God, change my heart or change my circumstances." He did both.

Now I have the best job I've ever had. My relationship is maturing and growing. My relationship with my family is better. I'm better.

I guess I want to get to this: God has never left me. He's blessed me beyond my wildest dreams. There were times I thought I couldn't wake up another day. I couldn't handle going through the motions of ONE MORE DAY. But I did. And I did it because God did it.

I was scared of visiting L.A. again. I was scared that I'd visit and not want to leave. I was scared I'd get back into my old scene and I'd resent moving home. I'd feel like a loser again. I'd feel regret.

I flew over L.A. on Wednesday night and I saw all of those billions of lights down below. That used to make me have butterflies. Seeing all of that activity made me excited and hopeful and challenged. This time, though, I didn't have that feeling. I just felt content.

I got to see some of my closest friends when I went back to L.A. That was a great thing. I was really happy, and it felt so good to reconnect. The thing is, though - it was good to VISIT. All I could think of was, "I can't believe I was living here when I was 23. How the crap did I do this?" I went hard and strong for two years, and then I was exhausted.

I got to go to "The Tonight Show" on Friday and see my hero, Dolly Parton. I never thought I'd be so close to her! She was amazing, like she always has been. I can remember dancing around in a blonde wig when I was little and singing Dolly's songs. I used to watch "Smoky Mountain Christmas" religiously. ("Thar's spells in this PIE!")

It was incredible. My friend Mike took us to the green room and gave us VIP treatment. I got my picture with Jay Leno. I couldn't believe that I was there with Jay Leno and Dolly Parton and one of my best friends. I kept thinking how blessed I was.

The next night we went to the Hollywood Bowl and saw Dolly's concert. I was so moved. I kept thinking how she was so in touch with who she was. She has all this fame and she was just this girl from TN and now she's 65 and playing at the Hollywood Bowl. My friend and I saw a shooting star. It was amazing.

Dolly started playing "Coat of Many Colors," and she talked about how she wrote that song to let the hurt out. Kids bullied her for being poor, and she said that by writing that song, she started healing. I knew what she meant. It's like all of that hurt from growing up, all of that resentment and bitterness from being bullied or misunderstood just sort of left me. I felt completely OK with myself. I started to cry. I felt grateful and fortunate and happy.

For the first time in a long time, I feel really happy. I've felt happy the past few months. I've come to terms with my life. I'm OK with not knowing what's next. I'm OK with lacking direction and certainty. But most of all, I'm OK with being here, and I'm actually happy.

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Some other work blogs.

Before you decide that I'm a disgruntled employee (yes, yes I am), please note that I am not using anyone's names, nor am I disclosing the name of the hellhole in which I worked. That has to count for something, right?

January 20, 2011

Let me give you an example of why I hate customer service. I emailed someone today to tell them that their issue has been fixed, and this was her email response to me.

"So. . . . What’s the answer to the question? Why did this happen and how was the issue resolved? And have you checked that it’s fixed on other pages? I was expecting a more complete response."

And I sort of wanted to google her home address, show up on her front door step, take a big pile of dog crap out of the yard, and rub it in her face to "teach her a lesson" about what it means to employ professionalism and courtesy in the workplace, but instead, I sent her a very very sweet email telling her how very sorry I was for being the dumbest person in the whole wide world who wasn't smart enough to be in a service position.


Am I the only person on earth who feels like EVERYONE IS GETTING ON MY NERVES RIGHT NOW?!?!?!? If only I could blame it on PMS. But I can't. It's just me.

January 24, 2011

I just received an URGENT email telling me that I had to URGENTLY fix something. The issue was this:

"Kimmie just came up and told me that there was a spelling error in the disclaimer of the site. There is a lower-case ?C? in the word ?care? and it needs to be upper case."


When I think of URGENCY, and CRISIS, and IMMEDIATE, I think of suicide, or school shootings, or terrorism, or international crises.

Even at this stupid job, I think of urgency as someone's entire website being down, or someone's information not showing up.

A lower case c?



Tuesday, June 28, 2011

A Good Old Fashioned ROAST

There are few things in life better than a good old fashioned roast. My last job was HORRIBLE. It was the second worst job I've ever had, and if I'd stayed there ONE DAY longer than I did, it would have been the first worst job I'd ever had.

One thing that's kept my mental health in check has been to journal and blog. In my formative years, it was creating artwork, but at some point, I transitioned to writing.

One of the things that kept me from strangling my boss at my old job was keeping a work blog that I promised not to publish until after I quit. I only worked there for four months, and my boss hated me, so I will never use him as a rec. So, old boss, this is my special gift to you.

Entry #1
January 24, 2011

My boss is a very passive aggressive person who dresses like some sort of homosexual hipster from the early 1990's. I don't mean one of those wonderful, sexy Greek god homosexuals, or one of those homosexuals that is hilarious and sassy and flamboyant (don't judge me for the stereotypes- my gay friends make jokes about the stereotypes and have given me full rights to making jokes, too). I mean one of those dark, brooding, hateful homosexuals who pours rat poison in your ginger ale because he resents being a flight attendant. You know what I mean. He is also deathly skinny. He's one of those people who considers himself an "artist," which is really weird, because he's a geek and does not have a single creative bone in his body. He tries desperately to be associated with the "arts" community, but he has nothing to offer it. He's just one more underachiever in this life who has a lame job down by the airport and works in IT.

I've been trying to figure him out. I've been trying to make a mental map of his passive aggression, hateful sarcasm, and biting comments, but I've decided to stop trying. Every day he tries to make my job more menial. I've seen this before. He is trying to force me to quit, because he doesn't have one good reason to fire me. He doesn't even have the fact that I'm blogging about my dumb work as a reason to fire me, because I'm not posting any work blogs until after I quit, and yes, you lame, uncreative, 1990's suppressed manorexic homosexual, I am quitting this stupid job that is infinitely beneath me, and I wish I was quitting today, but I'm not, because I am responsible, which is one more reason you will be regretful when I leave.

He speaks in all of these weird metaphors and analogies that DO NOT MAKE ANY SENSE. Maybe this job is to teach me more empathy for people who have disabilities. I'm not being funny. I really mean that. I take for granted that I do not have any disabilities. When this guy talks to me, it's like I'm totally disabled. I feel completely confused. When he has these "Come to Jesus" talks with me, I sit there listening to him, watching his lame little soul patch float up and down, trying to figure out what in the hell he's saying. He'll tell me things like, "Well, Rach, you just need to dress for the job you want." Does that mean I should wear a firefighter uniform? Because I want the job where I burn down the building.

My best friend is a very wise and interesting person with intuition beyond his years. He said, "Rachel, you just have to think of your work as the set of a sitcom," (obviously my best friend lives in L.A.), "and your boss is just one more character. Just know he isn't a real person, and that will help you deal with him better."

What's weird is that my boss doesn't really get under my skin that badly because I know my own value. I'm smart, I'm a hard worker, and I can learn to do any job. He can treat me like some idiot all he wants, and it won't get under my skin as long as I KNOW that I'm not an idiot. The fact that he can't control me is why he asks me to order him lunch and answer his phones. Ugh. He hates women. Sexism is so stupid. Why live in America if you're one of those people? Aren't all men created equal here?

I am so ready for this layover in my life to end so I can board the next plane and fly to my destination.

This might be the dumbest job I've ever had.

The upside is that it isn't emotional at all. It's just stupid, mind-numbing monkey work.

There's a girl at my office that I endearingly refer to as Pollyanna behind her back. She's got long stringy hair and she needs braces and she thinks that she is very smart. There's a very (VERY) slight attractiveness about her, despite her vampire teeth, but once she opens her mouth, she turns into this disgusting, wretched, urchin. She tries very hard to denounce her Memphis roots by faking a mid western accent, which could be hilarious, if it wasn't so obnoxious. She's 23 years old and has that virginal, fresh out of college look on her face. She often asks me to make her copies.

I can play the passive aggressive game, too. Watch me walk out the door without a 2 week notice, bitch.

Dresscode for Death

Life has been great over the past few months. GREAT. My job is the best job ever, and every day, I'm excited about going to work. I've never had an experience like this. Also, I'm on the verge of moving out (again). This makes me excited. Something about looking at piles and piles of cardboard boxes and mismatched furniture makes me absolutely bonkers. I'm looking forward to everything having its own place again. I even had a moment last week where I wasn't just tolerating this town, but I was actually embracing it. I was sitting in a rocking chair on the front porch of my bf's dad's house, and I was drinking a glass of red wine, and it started to rain. The house has a metal roof, so you could hear the rain tapping away. It was so nice. I kept thinking that I couldn't wait to get out of Memphis. I couldn't wait to cut ties with everyone I knew and start over. But I went to LSU and came back. And I went to L.A. and came back. And even though this isn't a place that I necessarily want to be forever, if I wind up staying here forever, there are moments, like hearing rain fall on a roof in the summertime, that make it ok.

Then there are moments that make me want to light the whole city on fire.

I have mentioned on countless occasions that I grew up attending one of those really strict tele-evangelist churches. Not one of the ones that casts out demons and people speak in tongues and fall backwards on the stage, but a tele-evangelist church, nonetheless. Despite the PTSD that I've carried into adulthood from a lot of my memories at that place, I have a strong appreciation for parents who took me to church every Sunday and paid for me to go to camp and all of those things. I'm appreciative that I have an understanding of who God is, and who He isn't, and what I believe and don't believe about Him. I appreciate my background and my faith is the most important thing in my life. But certain parts of the cultural Southern church thing just aren't my gig.

My mom's good friend died on Saturday. She'd been battling cancer for a long time, and on Saturday, she passed away. She had such a servant spirit, and she was someone who was genuinely kind. She'd dedicated her life to serving God, and that was obvious in everything that she did.

I'm not big on funerals, as I've touted before. I hate death and I hate funeral homes and I hate the overwhelming smell of memorial flowers and I hate hugging people whom I hate. So, pretty much, I avoid funerals if I can. Last time I went to a funeral and went back to work afterwards, I was totally worthless and kept crying the whole time. So this time, I decided to go to the visitation the night beforehand, so if I started bawling my eyes out, it wouldn't be quite as bad.

I had a lot of respect for my mom's friend. I respected her because she was the real deal. She wasn't fake or hateful or intolerant. She was genuine. I respected her so much that I carefully picked out a funeral-appropriate outfit that wouldn't make me look like a trollop. Now, I am Dolly Parton through and through, and I typically think, "the flashier, the better," but in this case, I ruled out flashy because this was a matter of respect. I also ruled out casual. I wear flip-flops religiously, but decided I'd go with some very low heeled, close-toed pumps. I even wore pantyhose. There's nothing in this world I hate more than pantyhose except mayonnaise. I HATE how pantyhose drag across your leg hair if you aren't freshly shaved, and I HATE how they bunch up around your crotch so you usually have to wear a slip so your crotch doesn't look lumpy, and I HATE how just the tiniest little snag will make them run and then you look like white trash. I HATE them (I do wear fishnets on occasion, though. not because I want to look like a hooker, but because European women wear fishnets in the winter, and everyone knows that European women are very glamorous, except for the whole not shaving their pits thing). But, the point is, I respected this lady so much that I put on close toed shoes and pantyhose in the 4908 degree heat and I wore a business casual outfit (I hate business casual).

My sister and I pulled up into the parking lot and I saw a few people walk in. And these people were wearing flip flops. And khaki capris. And t-shirts.

And I almost fainted.

I walked into the funeral home and probably would have thrown up if I hadn't spent thousands of dollars in therapy figuring out how to manage anxiety around people that make me really uncomfortable. Everyone was about 50 pounds overweight and I had never in my life been so offended at peoples' lack of taste. I saw people wearing blue jeans. BLUE JEANS. At the funeral home! I had bunched up pantyhose creeping up my crotch and my feet were all crippled because of my close-toed pumps and these white trash people were wearing blue jeans, and SHORTS, and FLIP FLOPS at the FUNERAL HOME?!


These are the things that make me hate this town. But you know what? I've noticed that there are just certain subcultures of people around here that I just can't be around because they irritate the crap out of me. It isn't really the entire city that sucks, despite the high crime and educational deficits and obesity and lack of constructive activities. There are actually a lot of wonderful, supportive, moral, good people here. And I've been genuinely happy since I started my new job and my life is back on track. But seriously. A word to the wise: if you're going to a funeral home, shorts, flip flops, blue jeans, capris, cargos, and tank tops ARE COMPLETE INAPPROPRIATE.

Sunday, May 1, 2011

No News is Good News

I used to work with this lady that I sort of hated, and she was big and fat and gross and her hair was gray and greasy and always pulled back in a short pony tail, and she had little skin tags all over her face and neck that looked like little skin lice or something, and her teeth were short and brown and she always had a lot of spit in the corners of her mouth when she talked. I didn't hate her because she was gross. I hated her because she was mean. She was mean and hateful and a HUGE judger, and she told the same uninteresting stories all the time, and she manipulated and spread rumors about everyone behind their backs. She was so negative. Plus, she looked like Chief Bromden.

Anyway, she used to always say, "No news is good news," and that's how I'd like to start my blog. I've noticed that I write more when I'm depressed or mad, and I haven't been depressed or mad in so long that I haven't really had the need to write in order to vent. With that being said, let me tell you about a few really cool things that have happened in the past month.

God's been working in my life, and I can feel it with every part of my being. I know I'm sounding kind of Benny Hinn-ish, but for reals, I feel like a changed person.

I was working in an incredibly negative, isolating, depressing job down by the airport where I was crunching numbers and getting yelled at by sorority whores all day. My boss was a disgusting male chauvinists, Pee-Wee Herman looking pig, always telling me I needed to dress sexier or act a certain way if I wanted a raise. He was really stupid, too. Stupid people on power trips are the WORST. There was also this disgusting, obnoxious, LOUD, raging idiot girl in the office with whom I think my boss was having an affair, but that isn't really relevant. She was the fakest, most ignorant person I've ever had to endure, and she'd be really fake-positive (fake positivism sucks) all the time in the loudest voice you've ever heard, and I always called her Pollyanna. Between Pee-Wee, Pollyanna, and the Greek culture, I could barely handle it.

I was working in this joke of an office shared with about 10 other different companies, in the GHETTO, surrounded by drug dealers and Mexican strip clubs. Plus the office is really far away from my current domicile.

It was during this time that I was struggling with a crap-ton of crap. Serious depression mainly, but I'm not sure how much was biological and how much was environmental. I was struggling with my faith. I was struggling with invasive thoughts. I was sucked into a huge black hole that I couldn't crawl out of, and every day felt like Monday, and I had nothing to look forward to, and all I could do was beat myself up for being a loser and a failure and leaving a dream to live a nightmare every day.

So, all of this leads up to me eating chicken.

I love fried chicken, and so does my bff, and one night around 1:30 in the morning, he and I bought all of the fried chicken (and I do mean ALL of it) at Popeye's in Hollywood and we ate every last bit of it, and the Persian guy running the place was really mad that we bought all of his chicken. I digress.
So, I am at work in my ghetto hellhole one month ago today, and I decide to go to Popeye's for lunch, because there are literally only two or three restaurant options in that area of town, and I was having a bad day and decided to make it better with some chicken. So I drive down into the deep hood and buy me some Popeye's, and I'm sitting in my car, parked in front of the strip club, eating my chicken leg and biscuit, and I get mad. I decided to have a Come to Jesus meeting with Jesus. I started talking to Him. And I sort of challenged Him.

I've never been one of those sweet, "precious" Sunday School kids who volunteers to put the felt Jesus up on the board. I've always been the one to ask my Sunday School teachers why they act one way at church and another way at home. I asked them why what they were teaching was completely opposite of what Jesus preached. I was never really a hellion, but I'll tell you what, I had no problem telling somebody that I wasn't going to believe them just because they told me to. And I think that's what ultimately really made me believe the Jesus stuff. It wasn't the church or Sunday school or youth group. It was me doing my own research because everyone else seemed so "off."

So I'm sitting in my car, eating my chicken, looking at the strip club, and I say to God, "Hey. You want your children to be happy, right? You want us to honor you, right? You want us to be holy and righteous and to love you and live for you and to be vibrant and free in You, right? So why am I working in a horrible, dark, evil work environment, eating chicken in my car in front of a strip club? I just absolutely don't believe that this is what You want for me. I really don't. So show me what it is that You DO want, because honestly, I just don't think that this is it."

So, after we had our little talk, I drove back to my stupid hideous office and sat in my car for a second wondering whether or not I should even go back inside, because I really didn't feel like I could handle it one more SECOND. But I did. I went back inside. Back to my computer of death, back to my debits and credits, back under the tyranny of the most ridiculous wimp of a sexist pig boss ever and back to Pollyanna's metal lungs of ignorance.

I sat in my chair, and my cell phone rang. I answered it.

Guess what.

It was a job offer.

I just about dropped dead. They weren't calling asking if I'd interview. They were calling to ask if I could START WORK ON MONDAY. They wanted me to work with kids with learning disabilities. It made me cry.

I quit my stupid job via email on Saturday. And on Saturday, I met this old Jewish guy named Lenny who started going to a Christian church and has been reading the Bible for the past few months.

Today I had lunch with Lenny and a girl named Tammy whom I'd never met. Tammy started telling me her story, about how she has been transient for the past 12 years, and she was homeless and an addict and a prostitute. She told me that she hit bottom and almost died time and time again, and then one day she found God. To see this vibrant connection between this old guy, Lenny, and this young girl, Tammy, and how they both had to go through brokenness and emptiness and heartbreak to find God... It blew my mind. I felt so encouraged and real and authentic after we had lunch together.

For the first time in a couple of years, I feel like myself again. I love going to work every day. I love my kids. I love that every day, I wake up, and I feel like God is giving me another chance. I got into the school psychology program at U of M and will be starting school again pretty soon. I can't wait. For the first time in a long time, I'm excited. And you know what else? I'm happy.