Archive | Stress Bucket RSS feed for this section

So *THIS* Is Burnout. (I’m Doing It For The Sweatpants.)

7 Jul

My friend Cornelius got a job in San Francisco! His dashing element of “*Pow* Bitch! MBA!!!” paid off, and now he’s settled in the lovely San Fran Bay peptalking me through the home stretch of my first trimester.

LoveMeDeux: I was doing ok, now I feel dejected.
Cornelius: Awwww
LoveMeDeux: I’m in the home stretch…4 more weeks of school. Did you ever feel that way?
Cornelius: All the time, all the fecking time.
LoveMeDeux: I was ok for 10 weeks, trying to scrap. but no matter how much I study, the test is still only about 60% of sh!t I know and the 40% is just fecking nebulous bullsh!t you make up?! It happened to you too?
Cornelius: Of course it did. You’ll make it by. You’re not comfortable with just doing that but it’s what happens. I was so worried I was going to fail out of the program initially.
LoveMeDeux: It’s like…we’re all at the point where we’re like bargaining. Like “Feck…I fecked up that test, it was a 7/10..so I need to crank this paper..will you read it?” “Yeah I will read yours if you read mine?” “I will totally read yours…we need A’s on this.”
Cornelius: You’ll be just fine. Don’t worry. This is not one of those times to worry.
LoveMeDeux: Yeah, that’s 2 trimesters from now in Finance. Ugh.
Cornelius: Come on, LoveMeDeux.
LoveMeDeux: UGH.
Cornelius: Cheer up.
LoveMeDeux: OH CORNELIUS…I am sick of it already.
Cornelius: I know. Ok. You know how much MBAs get post school right?
LoveMeDeux: Were you sick of it after the first semester?
Cornelius: Mmhmm, but I didn’t have a choice.
LoveMeDeux: Yeah, I got my business cards. I’m locked in. It’s final. It says “MBA Candidate, 2011” so I’m screwed.
Cornelius: No no. It means the end is imminent.
LoveMeDeux: Today I was thinking about the 15 weeks of pain that will start in September to December, the next trimester. And I felt like I felt the first week of classes…drowning. Panic.
Cornelius: No, no we all go through it. That’s part of the process. It’s not just classes.
LoveMeDeux: Those are some words of wisdom that I cannot process right now for some reason.
Cornelius: I know, because its tough to accept.
LoveMeDeux: Is it hilarious how having business cards locks you in? Like, “Oh snap! I had the official Pepperdine University business cards printed, I can’t back out and quit school now!”
Cornelius: LOL
LoveMeDeux: And the decal? and the sweatpants? I can’t give up the sweatpants. They’re like yoga pants. They’re blue. They say “Pepperdine”. I can’t.
Cornelius: Hahaha. I figured it was the student loans and sense of failure. But, yeah, sweatpants.
LoveMeDeux: Yeah. They’re comfortable.

Ha! “Student loans and sense of failure.” But no, I’m doing it for the business cards and the sweatpants.

That, and I don’t want to peel the decal off of my car if I drop out.

The Most Important Thing I've Learned Recently: Try To Manage Feelings of Fear & Panic.

14 Jun

I learned that the original panic/fear combination one-two punch that one may feel when entering a situation as a fish out of water is not so bad if you take it in–one little bite-sized bit at a time.

I’m back in grad school after a 7-year hiatus from academia [I graduated from USC in 2002], and it’s a culture shock, emotional shock, brain capacity shock, everything shock.

Four weeks ago, at the beginning of the trimester, I felt ill after every quantitative analysis class, and even considered quitting the MBA program altogether. I thought it was a mistake that I got “let in”. I confess, I actually looked at the paperwork to see if it was too late for me to drop the classes and get a full refund, but I pushed down the nausea, and now I’m 7 weeks in, at the mid-way point in the 14-week trimester, and doing better, emotionally.

The panic/fear combination one-two punch is not 100% dissipated, but I’m feeling slightly better. The diploma is still two years and 5.5 trimesters away, but I have learned to worry about the mountain later, and work on crossing the molehill now.

Plus some classmates and I got a math tutor, so we *all* feel better. 😀

*You* Be The Judge.

6 Jun

I just had a fight with my one of my best friends. We’ve been BFFs for going on 6 years and never had a fight until tonight. It’s a momentous occasion.

Sadly it is a fight that’s been borne of both of us neglecting addressing it, and tonight, it came to a head. Here are the facts, cold & simple:

On New Year’s Eve 2008/2009, I was with my BFF (He’s male) and some other friends at an trendyish LA bar.

There he met his current girlfriend, Linda.

When I saw him chatting with her and some other people, I went over to say hi and introduce myself, and I went to get a water, as the night was winding to an end, and I had to drive. A cold water right before I leave the bar always keeps me in good condition to drive home.

When I went up to talk to them, Linda (who, at the time, was just some other girl in the bar) scoffed at me. I shit you not, she SCOFFED at me. She did not tell me her name. She did not even look at me, aside from the original glance. I thought that was rude.

Then I realised that this girl didn’t realise I was my BFF’s friend and was with him partying that night. She might have thought that I was trying to hit on him?

The thing that really hurt me was that he didn’t stop to tell her, “Oh hey, this is my friend, she’s here with me tonight.” He actually ignored me, and said, “So…” and turned back to talk to Linda.

I told him that it hurt me. He sort of apologized to me about it. I got a sorry, but it was after I mentioned first that he hurt me, and it was via text. That kind of hurt too.

Then he started to date Linda, seriously.

I never asked him to break up with her. I never said anything about her, actually. But he knew how I felt about her–she was rude, and he was wrong to not have explained to her that I was his friend. He was wrong to have never bridged that issue and manage our friendship. He understood and agreed.

Time passes.

About a month ago, he moves from Chicago to San Diego, which is only a 2 hr drive from me.

He forgets to tell me, his supposed “BFF” that he moved to a place that’s 2 hrs from me. Suddenly, a week ago, I find out by way of another conversation that he has moved there.

The way I find out that he’s in San Diego? He calls this past weekend and says he’s driven up to LA for the weekend, and is going out to eat and drink with Sally, and where is a good place to eat in LA.

I’m sorry?

Why are you in LA? And why are you seeing Sally, an ex-girlfriend? When you told me years ago that you hated Sally, and that you only see her for one thing, and one thing only? And don’t you have a committed relationship with your girlfriend?

What?!

It makes me very sad that this is what’s happening. Less than 1 year ago, we would know each other’s whereabouts like the backs of our hands. Less than 1 year ago, I would be the one arranging his “Welcome back to California!” party.

Plus his whole “I’m dating Linda seriously, but on the other hand, Sally and I are going to be ‘hanging out'” thing just bothers the feck out of me. We are 29 year old, grown-ass adults…is it really the time to be practicing that brand of bullsh!t? Either break up with Linda, or stop seeing your “convenience” friends like Sally.

I don’t know. I try not to judge, but this is my BFF, here. I have always prided him on being a total gentleman, but I guess this is just disappointing me.

Tonight, he’s in downtown LA, at one of my favorite bars, but he’s with his other good friends, his sister, and Linda. I don’t want to cause a scene. I told him I’m sitting this one out. I told him I’m too pissed off, and I may start a fight if I went down there. I know my limitations, but even those are volatile and I may be prone to erupting into LoveMeHulk mode. We agreed that was smart. He said he needed to address me separately. He said we need to spend some time together, just the two of us, to talk this one out.

Do you understand the gravity of the situation? My BEST friend, whom I haven’t seen since January is in town, a mere 20 miles from me–probably only about 15 minutes on the road–and I am avoiding him. Does that make any sense?!

Tell me…am I just taking it too far? Am I being upset over nothing? I don’t know, I’m too entrenched in my own emotions, I can’t be a fair judge of them.

But I’ll say this. If I know that he is in town one more subsequent weekend, and he’s hanging out with his pseudogirlfriend or some other girl instead of taking the time to address this problem we have, I’m going to have to close this chapter of him in my life.

I just can’t handle any more neglect from someone who is supposed to be a best friend.

Nice To Meet You. Stressbucket*, Class of 2011.

13 May

I have always been a bucket of stress*.

Our buckets of stress are always a little bit full in our lives. Unless you live in a monastery in the hills of Tibet, surrounded by monks enveloping you in their peaceful ways, you are going to have some stress in your life as a given. Whether it’s a phone bill, or the threat of getting laid off, a family who is ill, or a broken-down car. I get it.

And for me, stress is at a constant, medium-level in my bucket. I know that it is just an aspect of my personality, and I know that I probably run best at this stressed out level. It’s as if I feel the pressure factor makes me propel myself forward. If I go to the gym, or relax and go see a film, or do something fun with friends, a small release valve appears and lets a little bit of stress go at a time.

Yesterday, however, something happened that has made my stressbucket overfloweth.

I started off my Tuesday with a great day at traffic court–haha, I know, traffic court?! Basically, I had a hold on my driver’s license due to lack of proof of insurance, and though the accusing police officer showed, both he himself and the bailiff dismissed it due to my valid proof of insurance and the extenuating circumstances.

But yesterday evening, I attended my second math class, more specifically Quantitative Analysis for Business. I knew that as a liberal arts major, the math involved in getting an MBA degree was going to be nasty, but I was not expecting to feel nauseous.

Yes, indeed. I felt like I was going to vomit.

I could see it happening.

Sitting there, in class, I felt the urge wash over me and I mentally mapped out how quickly I could do it if I had to make a dash for the ladies’ room.

At breaktime, a classmate wanted to talk to me about the assignment due in the Organizational Behaviour class that we were also taking together, and I know I made no sense in our conversation. I just kind of zoned out on the poor guy, and I feel badly. (And dangit, he is very cute, too. You know that something is very very wrong with LoveMeDeux when her mojo is impaired..!) I felt horrible. So this morning, I decided to speak with my academic advisor.

“Listen, I have had students who couldn’t even understand how to log into WaveNet (our online one-stop shop for students) take and pass this class.”

This made me feel better, but not that much better. I’m certain I’m an average student, but I don’t feel great knowing that there are those who are slightly lower than me who passed by the skin of their teeth. I mean, feck! I want to do well in this class, not just barely eke out a pass. Next person I called was my professor himself, who said:

“I have had Theatre Arts majors who haven’t taken math since high school pass this class. And the tests aren’t even worth that much in my class!”

That made me feel a little better. At least this prof is willing to work with me. And yes, I know it’s possible for me to take and pass this class with an okay grade. But sitting in that class last night, while freaking out, I actually pinged like crazy between the thoughts of,

“What if I belong in a J.D. program instead of an MBA?” to
“Is it too late to save face and drop this entire MBA program?” to
No, I’m sure I can get through this!”

I settled on the last one because I am not a fecking quitter. I AM NOT! But how does one get away from the pure anxiety and manic feeling associated with stressbucket mode to be able to relax and get through situations like this?

Oh wow, if I had the answer to that, I’d be the Dalai Lama’s BFF.

But I think that that will be the true lesson in my MBA experience. Not how to manage a underperforming department or provide brilliant leadership in a major Fortune 500 company. Not how to take game theory and apply it to forecast financial returns. Not any of that.

No. For me, it will be how to manage the stress, how to manage the anxiety and battle through it to get to my diploma at the other end of the tunnel. But I want tell you:

I held it, I did. I pressed down the overwhelming physical urge–but as soon as I made it to the parking garage after class last night, and as soon as I managed to lock myself safely away in my car–I threw up.

________________
*I prefer saying “Stressbucket” as opposed to “Stressball”, because “Stressbucket” is more accurate terminology.

Part Two.

10 Nov

Photo of the FDR Memorial. Depicted here are the men in the bread line during the Great Depression.

We’ve just elected a new president, who says he’ll bring on the change we need…but I swear, we’re in The Great Depression, Part II.

I am sick and fcuking tired of being unemployed.

Dangerously, Bone-Chillingly Close.

8 Nov

I sort of promised myself that I wouldn’t do any more Palin-bashing on my blog.

But, let me just ask you…

Does anyone else just physically shudder at the thought that she didn’t know that Africa was a continent, not a big country, and, when told to buy three suits for the RNC, used low ranking staffers to buy some of the clothes on their credit cards? Oh, and there’s so much more!

Do we, as a nation, understand just how dangerously, bone-chillingly close we were to being saddled with a vapid, superficial divamonster as a VP?

*Shudder*!

I think I will still be having nightmares for a while.

She’s Lost Her Mind, Someone Call A Sanitarium.

3 Nov

What is this country coming to?

I know that not all McCain supporters are crazy, but what the hell is this lady thinking? I mean, at some point she had to have grandkids, nephews and nieces and daughters and sons of her own? How would she feel if someone did the same to her children, and only gave candy away to Obama supporters?

America, the home of the brave? Land of the free?

Really?