Not to let anyone be under the impression that I have my life together at all, here’s a brief and extremely limited view into the constant worry that plagues my anxiety riddled mind. To be clear, these are things I worry about, not sometimes, but basically at all times and this was a lot harder to limit to only 10 things than my other list. My life has become a cycle of me worrying and talking myself out of worrying daily. Accept it. I’ve learned to make it work.
1. I’ve wasted most of my time working at part time jobs that will not benefit me at all post-graduation
While most of what we’ll call my “major-friends” (friends who I only know because they are also film majors, but I rarely see outside of school) have spent their years at Hofstra heavily involved in Film Club or TV things or working for free somewhere in Bumblefuck New York on the weekends as a PA on some straight to DVD indie shoot, I was not afforded that luxury. I spent my nights and weekends throughout college working at a ridiculous part time job to afford gas and beer and little else. My resume is chock full o’ customer service experience, but I have to seriously stretch to fill it with Film experience. Career wise, I’m sure there are people out there with less experience than I, but what really sucks if I allow myself to think about it for long enough is I seriously missed out on an important part of college – the lifelong friend part. I often feel like everyone knows each other from spending weekends together working on various sets whereas I just go to class and then go to work and talk to no one in the process. That’s partly my own fault, of course and it’s partly me just being dramatic and bitter that my parents aren’t loaded (curse you, universe) but it kinda sucks.
2. I am constantly broke and managing my money makes me a little nauseous
I think in general people don’t love being reminded how little money they have so this is probably the one that makes me feel least like a crazy person. The idea of opening up my banking app on my phone stresses me out so badly sometimes that I used to just avoid doing it. The direct result of that, by the way, was me overdrawing my checking account on an almost weekly basis. There’s truth in the idea that ignoring your problems makes them worse. Recently, The Google found some crazy cool basic finance apps that allow me to track my spending and thus, I’m way more neurotic about when I swipe my debit card than I’ve ever been before in my life. The obvious solution to this problem would be to eliminate my debit card and carry cash like a normal human, but that would be way too inconvenient. I’d rather just be panicked all the time.
3. I haven’t even started my life for real and I’ve accrued an enormous amount of debt
While we’re on the topic of how little money I have: If you don’t have this concern after graduating from college, my suggestion is to just avoid me for a while because I’m just not gonna like you at all.
4. I have friends who seem to be only seconds away from being engaged
My problems with relationships are way too enormous to even begin discussing them here but as I’ve mentioned, I still see myself as a fifteen year old. A significant number of my friends are currently dating the person they see themselves marrying. To me, this is a completely insane thing to even conceptualize. Especially since I am dating no one. We are still children [in my head]. We should not yet be talking about things like being married or having babies [in my head]. But, in reality, we’re of the perfect age to begin having real, meaningful, potentially life-long relationships and that is terrifying in and of itself. Again, I’m dating no one. To know that my friends will likely soon be sporting engagement rings and having bachelor parties makes me want to vom.
5. I have fat genes and no free time
First, I should clarify that I classify “free time” probably differently than most people do. Free time is not not not time that is allotted to sleeping and/or napping. That is an important part of my day that I knowingly schedule in so the dilemma most people have: take a nap or go to the gym? is never one that I have. Ever. But anyway, I’m genetically predisposed to being obese. I love my parents dearly but I curse their thighs and propensity for diabetes and heart disease. I eat healthy for the most part and – God bless my dad’s union health insurance – I see a multitude of doctors annually. And, truth be told, I go to the gym when I can but more often than not, after all is said and done, I’m exhausted and I use my precious little free time to manage some semblance of a social life (Sleep > going to a bar with my friends, by the way. In case you were wondering). I hold dear the theory that one person can not have everything. I do pretty well in school, have wonderful friends and a family who is my whole world. Maybe I’ll just never be skinny. I’ve come to terms with that. But, I still worry about being out of shape for a few reasons. 1. My family truly has terrible genes. If not monitored, I’m a breeding ground for more diseases than I care to discuss and 2. I really, really love clothes and being able to buy and wear the clothes I want and the bigger I am, the more difficult it becomes to indulge my shopping habit and still be dressed appropriately. My body image is a whole entirely separate issue that I’ll discuss at another time, though.
I was never, ever afraid of cancer until I saw it happen to my grandma: the strongest and most capable woman I know. To this day, I have no idea how old Noni is because she always appeared to be mid-to-late fifties. Seeing this awful disease literally suck the life out of this constantly moving force of nature has horrified me beyond all recognition. Some of you might wonder why I eat so many tomatoes. 1. It’s because I love tomatoes but 2. it’s because I once read in what I can assure you was not a medical journal that Lycopene wards off skin cancer – the very cancer I probably have the highest chance of contracting – and tomatoes are full of Lycopene. I will continue to do crazy things like gorge myself on tomatoes but I will not discontinue indoor tanning or wear sunscreen anywhere but my face and tattooed places. This is the mystery that is my brain. This also traces back to me being afraid of my crappy gene pool and also part of why, if you’re lucky, I’ll one day explain to you my plan for how I intend to breed perfect, blonde, professional athlete children. Genetics is a scary thing.
7. I can’t afford anything I want. How do people afford things?
Nobody works and everyone has all this extra time and money to do things they want to do. I work constantly and never have money for anything. What am I doing wrong?!
8. I have no way of knowing if I’m as talented as any of my peers.
This is just me second guessing myself. I’m pretty good at what I do but I’d like to be graded on some kind of scale. Like to be ranked in life just like how I was ranked in high school. That’d be prefect. Without grades how will I know if I’m doing it wrong!?
9. My chosen career field will probably never allow me to retire
This is a sad fact of reality, albeit something I was aware of when I decided on my major. Thankfully I love what I do.
10. I’m too nostalgic about high school
This worries me to almost no limit. I’ve been told the horrors of being the girl who peaked in high school. I can probably be found on record saying that I would give a limb – an important limb – to go back to high school well over one hundred times. Most of my friends, by this point, have successfully moved on with their lives and are enjoying college and whatever else it is that they do while they’re not at home entertaining me. I, however, three months away from college graduation still spend time wondering when it is that I’ll be allowed to go back to High School. That was when life was good. I’m genuinely worried that life will never be better for me than it was in 2009 and that it’s me holding myself back. Is there something I can do to help myself move on with life? Someone please help.
Other constant worries that were close contenders: I have no clean clothes, I have nothing to wear to ______, Where will I find time to sleep this week?, Does my ex boyfriend miss me at all?, The possibility that my phone might die mid-day and I’ve forgotten a cell phone charger, My friends are all out and no one called me, I’m going to die alone, I’m going to live in my parents house forever, I’m going to die.
So. As you can see, although sometimes I may feel like I’m doing something right, generally, I’m a mess. Who wants to trade places now?…Didn’t think so.