Archive for October 2013

29 October 2013

A little whining about dating

By: Jessica B.

I don’t know what happened, but ever since I got back from my trip, love is in the air…for everyone but me.

Okay, disclaimer: I own up to the fact that I haven’t been trying as hard to meet guys. Between Portland and Europe, and some other things going on personally, I haven’t been really trying.

Back to a little whining.

Since I got back, almost all of my previously single friends, have met someone. Or has a serious crush on someone or get getting some lovin’ from someone.


And here’s the thing. I love, love. I’m happy for my friends, who are all fabulous people, and who deserve to be happy and with someone who treats them as the lovely people they are.

Seeing them happy, makes me happy, and when I meet the boyfriend or girlfriend, I’m genuinely excited and always polite.

But then there’s the dark part of my brain. The one who can’t help but ask, what’s wrong with me? Why can’t I find someone? Even when I was trying, it wasn’t happening, or wasn’t the right guy, time, etc.

I do really believe that timing is everything, but I’m tired of it not being MY TIME.

And, yeah, I’m a little sad to be losing more single friends, because no matter what they say (cough, the lie that they don’t ditch friends when they get in a relationship), things do change.

At a particular low point, when another friend told me she met someone, it took every ounce of strength not to burst out crying. I mean, I was still happy for her, but the dark part took over temporarily. So I had that shame spiral in private, staring at myself in the mirror thinking, “what is it that makes me so unattractive to men?”

I know that’s not productive, or the point, or even in the same realm of what is happening with my friends, but, it’s there.

So, there is no real resolution to this post. It’s just to say, love is in the air!


21 October 2013

When time becomes more real

By: Jessica B.
Tagged: Random

Lately, I’ve been feeling like time goes so quickly. And what feels like a day is really a year, or a month becomes two years.

When we had my dad’s retirement party, that was the first real realization of like, holy shit, this is happening! We’re at THIS point. Same with when he went on Medicare. And then again when I attended my grandpa and grandma’s 90th birthdays, respectively.

It was that feeling of, holy cow, how did we get here and…what happens now?

I see my parents and grandparents as these infallible people who inevitably get older but aren’t touched by the realities of it.

Naive? You bet. But, since I’ve not had to deal with a lot of family deaths (knock on wood) up to this point in my life, that’s my view.

Until I got a text from my mom saying to call her, and then hearing from her that my grandma, the one who turned 90 in March, had a mini stroke last week. She was in the hospital and things seemed positive, but it was jarring.

And sitting at work, trying to focus on a recap deck was suddenly the last thing on my mind.

And immediately, I also felt, I’m not ready for this. Not ready to handle the inevitability of them getting older, slowing down, showing their age. I should call them more, I should call them back! I should make more of an effort to see them when I go back to Wisconsin. Those thoughts run through my head and overwhelm me, and sadden me at the same time.

Because in the end, there is only so much time. Time to be made for everything and time that I have with them.

Right now, she’s doing better. And I’m so grateful it wasn’t more serious or with devastating long-term effects, but it was maybe also the reminder I need to make changes now with them, because you never know what could happen next time.

Grandma is home and resting now, thank goodness.

16 October 2013

Sometimes, people really suck

By: Jessica B.
Tagged: Random

Note: there is a disclaimer for this post, but I’ll get to that.

I believe in karma. I follow the Golden Rule and doing good for others as much as I can. I always try to pay it forward because, I would want someone do that for me. Cheesy? Maybe. But that’s me.

Once, I found a tourist’s wallet just off Michigan Avenue and it had $300 in CASH inside. And you know what I did? I looked inside to see if I could contact him and left him a message of where he could collect the wallet. And then I turned it in to a store nearby, without taking A DOLLAR from it.

Why? Because that’s the right thing to do.

Fast forward to last week, when at a happy hour, I was wearing a ring I bought in Italy three years ago. It wasn’t expensive and it didn’t even have a semi-precious stone, but it was special to me.

And, granted I had two Guinness’, so I was a little tipsy, but when I woke up the next morning, the ring was gone. And wasn’t in my purse, pants, jacket or wallet, where I normally place it.

Which means I left it at the bar, either on the table where we were sitting, or maybe in the bathroom by accident. And when I called to check in with them, my worst fear was confirmed. No one had turned a ring in. And after another exhaustive search of my apartment, it wasn’t there either.

Now, nearly a week later, I called back to just see if something had come through, and it didn’t. And while I haven’t lost total hope, it’s a huge bummer.


I take full responsibility for not being more careful with my stuff. But more than that, I’m disappointed someone didn’t do the right thing and turn it in.

Sometimes, people suck.

14 October 2013

An extra special Chicago Marathon

By: Jessica B.
Tagged: Friends

I’m about to share two points that are somewhat unrelated, but will make sense.

1. I’m super nerdy about the Chicago Marathon. Maybe it’s because I love that it runs right by my apartment, but going out to cheer and watch as people run through my hood makes me ridiculously happy and inspired.

2. I’m also super supportive and nerdy for my friends and the things that are important to them. Maybe it’s a fault, but if they have a dream, I’m all about supporting them and helping them make it happen.

This year, those two points intersected.

In January or February, my male platonic life partner Ryan told me he wanted to run the Chicago Marathon. And (thinking he was kidding), I said that if he did it, I would run part of it with him. Well, then he registered for it (f*ck) and things got real.

I probably could have told him I was kidding and yeah, I wouldn’t do it too, but I’m a woman of my word (something that shocks many people), so while I was already training (painfully) for a 5K, he started marathon training in May and I really stepped up my game.

And after months of training, sweat, trips to Fleet Feet and just talking about it. Marathon day (yesterday) came.

To keep on track with my 10K training, I had to run 5 miles yesterday, so I promised I would run that distance with him as support. Up to that point, I had only run 4 miles (which was insanely painful) the weekend before, so 5 miles seemed daunting. And the entire time I was waiting for Ryan to appear on the marathon route, I was nervous.

But then suddenly, as I was standing with his parents and family (who were in town to support him too), he appeared at mile 7, gave me a high five and we took off together, with his parents cheering behind us.

I ended up run/walking 8 miles with him. A new distance record for me. And, NO PAIN IN THE LEGS. The entire experience was surreal. People cheering, music playing, people high fiving you as you went along. The energy was insane. And being there with one of my best friends, laughing, sharing Gatorade and gripes about the aches in the legs, made it even better.

I met him at the end of the marathon too, seeing him exhausted and holding his medal and feeling this intense burst of pride and joy for him. We both had a milestone that day and got to have them together.

Totally worth the agony I am feeling in the legs today.


07 October 2013

Back to life, back to reality (and sometimes it stinks)

By: Jessica B.
Tagged: Random

I’ve been back from vacation for just over two weeks, and let me tell you, getting back to reality is TOUGH.

Vacation is fun! You don’t have to think about real, adult things because it’s all museums, food, culture and just relaxing.

Normally, I don’t have trouble re-integrating to real life, but for some reason, coming back from Ireland and Germany has been rough.  And I think I know why.

Things feel weird and disconnected. And I don’t do well with “weird.”

Weird means that things just feel out of sorts, at work, with friends, etc. And I don’t really know how to fix it so I end up stressing myself out because I can’t fix it or fix it to be the way I want, which ends up driving me crazy.

Spoiler alert: I am a Type-A, people pleaser. And sometimes, it sucks, because people treat you like crap, you let them and then you just feel crappy yourself because you know it’s wrong but don’t change it.

Trust me, I’ve been there. And since I returned, a few things have happened to bring a lot of topics/issues I’ve been keeping quiet to the surface, and that shit hits you like a tidal wave.

For example, it made me realize some situations with friends that upset me, but I kept bottled up. Or, having to realize that some friends I was really close to, I’m not close with right now, and rather than keep forcing that connection, I have to accept that friendships change.

I’m SO not good at that.

So, for now, at the strong advice of multiple friends (who have listened to more crazy in the last two weeks than probably ever before), it’s time to do one thing.

Let it ride.

I don’t do well with things being undefined or “weird,” but I need to also recognize what I can and cannot control.

I can’t change the stress at work, or the crappy treatment from friends, but I can change how I let that affect me and identify what I can control.

Seriously, why didn’t someone tell me adulthood was so difficult?