I’m Losing My Mind

Monday evening we had two medium to mild wedding crises.  Both can be resolved, but when biggies come up within two weeks of the wedding involving the bride’s clothes for the wedding and the marriage license it’s a bit stressful to say the least.

All day yesterday I was pumped because I came up with the best wedding present idea and it was supposed to be delivered.  On my lunch break I followed up on the two crises and was pretty confident that everything that could be done now was done.  I felt like things were being checked off the to-do list left and right, and I was pumped to get home and maybe even wrap Mergsie’s wedding present!

I got home to find a small item that I had ordered, but no wedding present.  I rushed inside and checked the email confirmation I received yesterday morning and sure enough it definitely said 10/27.  A couple of months ago I ordered a backpack for biking from REI and it never arrived.  The tracking information said it was delivered at the door about 30 minutes before Homie got back from work, but it wasn’t here.

I searched for the backpack around our neighborhood in case it was delivered to the wrong place, checked with UPS, and at the post office because apparently the delivery method is a new one where UPS hands the item off to USPS for the final delivery.  Fortunately, REI was fantastic about the whole thing, took my word for it that the bag was not actually delivered, and issued a full refund.

The tracking information for the wedding present listed delivery as the same UPS to USPS delivery as what my backpack had.  I freaked out.  Because the package obviously was not at the door, but the delivery confirmation listed the delivery as “at the front door.”  And I doubted it was stolen because who steals one package but leaves a second behind?  Plus there’s the whole we live on the top floor and the building is small and not exactly optimal for getting in and out unnoticed.

Homie had arrived at the same time I did and he offered to help me look for the package.  I figured it could have been delivered to another building and I wanted to eliminate that possibility before I called UPS.  We grabbed keys and ran out the door, I went left and he went right.  I ran up to the third floor (which depending on the elevation of the building is either three or four flights of stairs) in every single building hoping that at one of the doors I would find my package.

I found a number of other packages that had been delivered.  Twenty minutes later we had searched every building and I ran at least three flights of stairs 13 times in my dress clothes, but still no wedding present.

I was so disappointed.  I thought this was the perfect wedding present and I was ecstatic to find it.  It is a vintage item and I have found others for sale but the price has been about 4 times as much and the condition of the item hasn’t always been as good.  I really wasn’t sure if I would be able to find another one that would arrive before the wedding.

We came back in and I decided to call UPS first.  Clearly there is some kind of problem with the delivery system, driver, or our address in the system if my package got lost a second time.  I picked up my phone, pulled up the tracking information, and sat down to wait for a real live human.  While I waited I picked up the package that was delivered.  I was reading the label trying to see if I could figure out why one UPS package arrived and the other didn’t.

As I studied the label and compared it to the tracking information I noticed the last four digits of the tracking number in the email and on the package were the same.  My first thought was that maybe those four digits represent our specific apartment.  But then as I looked I realized more of the numbers were the same.  I looked at the beginning of the number, the middle, back at the end.

It couldn’t be…

But yes. Yes it could.  I checked and wouldn’t you know the wedding present is being shipped FedEx and checked in today somewhere in West Virginia.  The package that UPS delivered today that I frantically searched every building on the closest three streets for, and then called customer service to find was there the whole time.

Fortunately, Homie wasn’t upset that he ran around the neighborhood in a suit looking like a creeper.  He was just glad the package wasn’t lost.  But I think I may be losing my mind. I ran around looking for something that was literally in.my.hand.

Clearly I need a glass of wine.

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Over Thinking Everything

I’m officially freaking out about how to ride my bike in this weather.   Admittedly, by “this weather” I mean cool crisp mornings in the 40s.  I know.  I’m a wimp.  I won’t even make excuses.

I didn’t ride my bike at all last week.  That was actually because I only went in to the office 3 days, two of them I had my laptop, and one I had to drive because I dropped my sister off at the airport.  But I felt a tiny smidge of relief that I had reasons not to bike because I hate to be cold.

My new bike isn’t ready for commuting yet and my old one doesn’t have a rack so I have been riding all summer with a backpack that has one torn shoulder strap.

Between my pondering about lifestyle choices and a horrible commute thanks to Metro I found myself determined to take the steps I need to keep commuting by bike.

I decided at a minimum I need to buy a jacket, gloves, and panniers.  I don’t have to figure out snow or ice just yet.  I just need to have the proper clothing to be comfortable in 40 degrees and move on from there.  I told myself by Sunday evening I needed to have purchased those three items, no excuses.

But here’s the thing… I have no idea what I’m doing.  I do, but I’m torn between wanting to get exactly what I really want and picking out the perfect thing and not wanting to spend a ton of money on any one item.  Because it’s too warm for heavy winter gear, but if I actually am awesome and keep riding then I’ll also need some true winter gear as well.  I don’t want to blow our budget now on fall/spring gear.

I decided just to get basic all-purpose panniers for my bike.  But I couldn’t pull the trigger because they are not exactly what I want.  I decided to move on to buying a jacket.  Then I realized I have no clue, absolutely no clue what to buy.  I knew that I needed something that would be appropriate for around 30-50 degrees and that allowed movement.

I did a little research and thought I had found a few possible options.  But then I came across something about hard-shell versus soft-shell and I realized I don’t even know what that means!!!

I’m sure I’m completely over-thinking this, but I feel dumb for spending money on something when I’m clearly way out of my element here.  And I feel dumb for being so out of my element buying clothing appropriate for an activity that I used to spend hours doing.

I would be more comfortable going out and haggling to purchase a car right now than buying clothes for biking.  I know enough about cars, I know enough to know what I don’t know, and I know where to go for answers for the things I don’t know.  That would be less stressful than trying to set myself up for continuing to bike through this winter.

I feel like an idiot.  I didn’t even begin to look at gloves.  I’m positive I’m over thinking all of this, but I’m also worried about the things I don’t know that I don’t know.

Monday Mantra

Be Gentle

I may have already declared this particular quote as a “Monday Mantra” but it fits for this week.

I have been fighting incredibly hard not to feel stressed out by my particular co-worker.  Last week I feel like I kind of lost that battle.  By Friday I felt worn out, I felt like I didn’t know how much longer I could last.

I know that’s not really the case.  It’s just that by the end of the week I was really feeling late nights, my cousin’s cancer, being sick, and the flurry of things that need to be done before Mergsie’s wedding.  I didn’t have the energy left to deal with my co-worker.  But I hate that it wore me down so fast.

I only have a four-day work week.  I need to focus on being patient with my co-worker, she is obviously struggling mightily and it leaves her feeling stressed and vulnerable.  I need to give her grace.  But I also can’t beat myself up if I need to close my door for 30 minutes and have some space.

So be gentle with yourself this week, that’s my goal.

Sisters Weekend – A Success

Sisters Weekend was a rousing success.

Unfortunately, it completely kicked my butt and I was in bed by 9 every night this week.

We started the weekend off with brunch with a detour that routed a major road through the airport which resulted in the 9 minute drive home from the airport taking 40 minutes with 31 minutes of that being a crawl just to exit the airport, and a police officer dressed in gray and black with no car, no reflectors, no cones, nothing yelling at me when an SUV cut me off.  I crawled to the turn lane, when I finally reached it I signaled and then passed the 3-4 cars ahead of me.  The SUV up ahead at the point where the two lanes broke apart abruptly pulled in front of me and cut me off.  I blew my horn (it’s a reflex).  A police officer standing in the straight lane on the passenger side of that SUV yelled at me “that’s what you get for not waiting.”

Umm… What?  What the freak man?  For waiting until I reached the turn lane (as opposed to driving up the left shoulder which admittedly I considered), signaling, and knowing where I want to go (which is not the same way as this bumper to bumper crawl) I “get” cut off and almost hit???  Seriously?  I don’t mean to be disrespectful (okay fine. I kind of do.) but who the heck stands on the passenger side of the road in black and gray with no vehicle with flashing lights, no reflectors, no cones, no flares, nothing except a flashlight in her hand?  That’s the dumbest move I ever saw.  I wanted to call and complain but it was so dark I have no idea which agency she is even employed by.

The Bride

But… once we finally got back we crashed and then officially started the weekend off with a delicious brunch!  It felt wonderful to all be gathered together in the kitchen chatting around the island.

We had an awesome day hanging out, we ate tons of delicious food, and watched the Mets win.  There is something infinitely better about watching a game in a house with a group of people who are screaming and cheering just as loudly as I am compared to watching it by myself in my apartment and mentally apologizing to my neighbors.

The next day we got a couple of wedding to-dos crossed off the list, had lunch with my parents, and watched Furious 7 while munching on cheesecake and chocolate chip pie.

Mergsie and I got up at 4 though for her to catch her flight home and I headed straight in to the office.

I spent the rest of this week exhausted by 8 pm but it was worth it!

Sisters Weekend

This weekend is “Sisters Weekend”!!!  I’ve been looking forward to it since about July when we planned it.

I think in the last two years all my sisters and I have only been together three weekends.  Since July 2011 at least one sister has been living out of the country until July of this year.  And not the same sister, but 3/5.  They have inadvertently taken turns living overseas which has meant that every holiday has had a sister missing.

July 2014 we were all together for a long weekend.  Everyone is currently back in the States and one sister is getting married; the one I affectionately refer to as Dr. Mergalicious.

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It’s super weird that she is getting married.  It’s even weirder that she is marrying someone who is approximately the opposite of every single other guy she has dated.  But he’s also the first guy she has dated who I have liked.  And he’s just right for her.

She has this weekend off and our sister who is in college has fall break so we decided to make this weekend Mergsie’s “bachelorette party” ish.   Ish because our youngest two sisters (the babies) are 12 and 14 so there won’t be any clubs or plastic penis decorations.    Which is better anyways.

After we planned for this to be “Sisters Weekend” we realized that our parents will be out-of-town for the weekend at a conference.  So it truly will be just the sisters.

I’m so pumped!!!  I’m waiting to head to the airport and then tomorrow morning it officially starts with brunch including waffles and mimosas (not for the babies).  That will be followed by an all day movie marathon of the Fast & Furious movies with snacks of course.  Then we have shrimp or beef tacos for dinner with avocado lime sauce and honey jalapeno margaritas (Cokes for the babies) and cheesecake and chocolate chip pie for dessert!

Sunday we have to find Mergsie shoes for the wedding and make the place cards for the reception.  It should be pretty awesome.

Co-Workers

That should probs just be “co-worker”.  There’s just one.  But isn’t there always that one.

The worst part about my co-worker is that at the office, we’re actually friends.  Out of everyone there she’s my work friend.  She’s the one I run to the post office and pharmacy with.  She’s the one I gossip with.  She’s the one I grab when I’m stressed and need to walk around the block.  She comes into my office and tells me what’s going on in her personal life.  We get lunch together and run errands with each other.

But as co-workers, actually working together… I can’t stand her.  She’s awful.  And it’s terrible.  And she makes me want to leave my job and run away.

The problem is, I don’t even know what the problem is.  The problem is her.  And I’m not quite sure why.

She gets along with no one.  Many people in the office barely tolerate her.  She’s loud and brash, she’s often negative and overly harsh, she’s always stressed out.  But she’s genuine and honest and smart and she always strives to do her best.  And there’s something appealing to me about someone who is so brutally honest to your face that it makes you kind of hate them.

There’s nothing I hate more than fake people.  I have no doubt that whatever she says about me to other people can’t be any worse than the things she might feel compelled to say to my face.

To me, there’s a comfort in being around someone who is brutally and shockingly honest all the time.  I find it reassuring, I can know it’s real.  I can trust that.

But to work on a project with, she’s difficult.  She’s a somewhat poor communicator and she freaks out over little tiny things and she tries to control things that aren’t her business and she lashes out when things aren’t going the way she expected or she is disappointed.

And she’s negative.  She is soul sucking in her negativity.  All the positive emotion and energy is completely zapped from the room when she is in it.  She carries with her tension so thick you nearly smother in it.

I don’t like psycho-analyzing people and suggesting diagnosis for their behavior because I think it’s not fair.  But I don’t know how to describe her behavior as anything other than possibly bi-polar.  It is draining and exhausting.  One conversation she is kind and thoughtful and then a few hours later she is argumentative and angry and harsh.

Things were so terrible with her this week that every day I worked with her I came home and cried.  I reached out to an executive at another office to chat with him about possible employment.  Then on Thursday she came into my office with a birthday gift for me.  She spent hours making me a bracelet and bookmark.  And they are incredible and beautiful.  After I thanked her she tried to boss me around and argue over our work project.

Someone asked me when she is real.  Is she real when she’s angry and bitter or is she real when she’s kind and thoughtful.  And I had to answer that I have no idea.  There is equal strength in the emotions she exhibits on both sides.  I can’t detect a more genuine tone to either one.

From conversations with her I am nearly positive that she doesn’t mean to be so negative or mean.  But she also is completely unaware and incapable of hearing how she speaks to other people.  It’s truly sad.  Sometimes when she is arguing with people in the office I hear her and I can tell by her tone and what she is saying that she is striving with every fiber to be polite and professional.  But her voice comes out condescending and mocking.  She sounds fake.  She sounds like she’s speaking down to them, when really she is trying to stay calm even when she’s upset.  And sometimes she comes to my office and asks how it went.  I’m honest with her.  It went terribly.  But she doesn’t hear it in her own voice.  I don’t know how to explain it or show her if even when I explain or imitate her voice in the conversation she can’t hear that somehow her emotions come through and speak louder than her words.

I’m on a team with her because no one else will work with her.  And even I had to tell my boss on Tuesday that I am happy to work on this project with her, but I can’t be the only one.  I need to be on another team after this project is over.  My boss expressed to me that he is concerned that either I or our other team member will leave because of her.  I didn’t know how to answer because I’d already contacted an executive and our other team member had admitted to me that on Tuesday she went home and cried and considered just quitting.

I have another three weeks until she goes on vacation and I find myself counting down and trying not to take her comments so heart.  But it is emotionally draining.