20 questions, the grownup version. jan 30th.

i usually blame bad days on rough starts. and occasionally, on rough finishes.

today is no exception.

on the bright side, i bragged to kit about my shower epiphany this morning, at brunch. i thought of coffee for the first time today, in the shower, as i thought about song lyrics applying to him, in what feels like forever. unfriending him on fb has made my head clearer, has made my heart have less affinity for him, and has absolutely helped me to move on. because, for whatever reason, seeing pieces of his life online daily were constant little reminders of a loss. and without them, i don't think of them on my own, and i don't play the what if game with myself. it eliminated thought processes i thought i'd never shake. and it isn't a daily reminder that he doesn't give a fuck about what i think or say. pretty awesome.

that little bit of goodness followed a rough start.

i woke up to an email from ever. i didn't want to open it, because i had sent him my final offer. after not hearing from him for a couple days, i expected the worst.

and again, it was a long email, very little of it about things relating to me and the divorce. it was all about more complications with his family. i had to read it twice to make sense of it, because it literally was written in a way that assures me he is actively losing his marbles.

it tried to explain why he wants 7k tomorrow, and 3k when he's out of the house. the money, wired. the paperwork, signed and emailed during the day tomorrow.

how he sent money home to bury his grandmother, and how he wants 10k from me to buy his aunt out of the grandparents house, so she doesn't sell it out from underneath them all. keep in mind, last week he was dying in 4 years and has $7k in medical debt.

and as per the usual, the sad tale tugged on my heartstrings. and my initial reflexive reaction was to say, 'alright. 3k more than i want to give him for it to be over with? tomorrow? fine!'

but the problem is, it's only a reflex. and after that, all the reasons start spilling out. and i'm sorry, but his signature on divorce papers and potentially empty promises to leave as soon as possible are not worth the $7k he thinks he is justified in demanding.

so i started to write him back, because that is what i do. and right now, it looks something like this:

1. you can't email quitclaim paperwork. i don't know why you think you can demand the money on monday , but until you agree to the terms or request modifications, lawyer can't draw up the paperwork. and once he does, you're going to have to sign in person, because it has to be notarized. you don't know when lawyer and the notary have time to meet with you and i to work on this. i have to know in advance to get out of work.

2. you need to address the mortgage situation. are you saying that you have spent the money to pay the january and february mortgage payments, and that you're expecting me to pay that in addition to the december payment i made two days ago? because if that is the case, then another payment needs to be deducted from the $7k i offered you, bringing it down to $5500. i don't have money to pay my rent and your mortgage payments. i pay for the space i live in, and it is your responsibility to do the same. you chose to spend your money in other ways and not earn more income, and that is not my problem.

3. i understand wanting to help your family, but the money your aunt demands from your mom and uncle isn't how you and i make a deal about the house we own. i can't give you more than what i offered you, because i am already afraid that i'm not going to break even on the house as it is. i have to pay my parents back for all the money they lent us, and what they are about to spend fixing it up even more. i have to pay off the debt we racked up. and i'll have to pay back the money i'm borrowing to buy you out.

4. you transitioned from letting the house go to foreclosure and not caring about money (which meant you'd walk away with nothing), to having $7k in medical debt because you won't get a job with benefits, to using mortgage money and bill money to send home. and now, you need $10k to buy interest in your grandparents house. you're demanding more from me overnight. and that can't happen. it's not going to. you didn't have internet, fine. you have a phone. don't wait three days to respond on a sunday and demand money overnight.

i am really sorry that your family is going through everything they are going through right now. to have your aunt fighting everyone for money in light of your grandmother's death and amanda's situation is insane. i am sympathetic. but you should be talking to your aunt about how you feel about all of this and telling her you need time, instead of trying to squeeze money out of me to fix it overnight.

i don't know what you are leaving untended to as far as our house goes, other than the mortgage situation that you have yet to explain, i have to pay my rent late because you were irresponsible. i had to keep the house from getting foreclosed upon. you should get nothing, because if i hadn't stepped in, this would have resolved itself.

i have a feeling there are going to be a lot of surprises that come up with the house, because you haven't taken care of things, and you have let the entire situation spiral out of control. i am the one who has to step in and fix it all, without knowing what i am getting into. i shouldn't even be negotiating with you until i know all of that information. i have to wait for months to collect the debts you owe me when the house sells, it's not like i get it when you sign everything over to me.

i am not going to hand over a bunch of money and hope that you're true to your word. paying half of the money when everything is signed is how i have to protect the money i'm borrowing. you have singlehandedly destroyed my credit in the past six months, and now your decisions and lack of communication mean that i have to jump in and try to figure everything out, without having a way to pay for any surprises, because you have created a situation where i can't use my credit to help.

there are 29 days between now and the end of february, and i'm sorry, but there's more to you moving out than just taking all of your own stuff out as soon as jay and matt can move you. the house is filthy. just like moving out of an apartment, you need to clean up after yourself before you leave. basement included.

anything that doesn't belong to the two people living in the house now has to be out. there is so much stuff in the house, and i don't know who any of it belongs to. because people have moved in and out since i left, i can't just throw everything away that you leave behind. it is your responsibility as the person who collected rent to care for the property. if there are things that belonged to the two of us that you want to leave, that is fine. but nothing that came in after i left and doesn't belong to the two roommates is to be left behind.

what you do with this money is none of my business. and having a legitimate cause to contribute to doesn't change what i can give you.

i offered you the most i can give you, and told you why. now i've explained it again. i'm borrowing the money, so no money is changing hands until the agreement has been made and there is a date when we can meet to sign everything. i will be prepared, at that time, to pay half of what we agree to.

my previous offer stands. you are offering nothing in exchange for more money. you haven't shown where your figure is coming from, except to list unrelated family issues. wiring money to you electronically doesn't create a paper trail, the second half of the payment is assurance that you will hold up your end of the bargain.

so there was that.

and then, i opened an email from kit. and it's a 20 questions article:


i love that she says answering them today could redirect your life, asking them everyday could transform it.

so this is my reply to that article:

1. what questions should i be asking myself?

what do i want to do with my life?

after this, i really don't know what i want to do. i don't have goals, or a timeframe, because it changes on a daily basis. i don't know where to start, so i never start at all.

what was i thinking?

i ask myself this on a daily basis, since i left ever. and probably for about half the time i was with him. mostly, i relate it to him, but there are other times in my day, when i'm at work or living life, when i ask it as well.

how much should freedom cost?

i mean, is it worth 3k more to be done with it this week? maybe it is.

why am i back in bed at 230 on a sunday afternoon?

because it's cold outside, because i drank two decaf coffees after only one regular. because i worked on my day off yesterday, and want to feel like today is going by as slowly as possible. to do as little as possible. and to write. that's why.

2. is this what i want to be doing?

no. fucking nowhere NEAR it.

3. why worry?

i have actively been working on this. i worry. all day, every day. it gives me panic attacks. it makes me lose my appetite, it gives me headaches. it makes me feel bad about myself. it makes me shake. it makes me eat too much of anything i see.

once i realized, after a few hurdles, that everything i worry about is so much less awful once it's happening or over with, i have tried to nip it in the bud. and i've had fewer panic attacks, and spent less time shaking.

i haven't accomplished this, but i'm doing pretty well with it, because i'm actively working on it. i still have my moments, driving around lost in thought, wondering how i made it from point a to point b without wrecking the car, due to worry. and i still haven't been sleeping well, due to worry. but i am slowly affirming that i can't change most things, and that there's no sense in worrying about them. i think it's why i watch so much internet tv. to keep my mind from slipping into worry mode.

4. why do i like ___ more than ___?

fries more than fruit - because they're so fucking good

bar food more than cooking - because it's easier, and so fucking good

(kit wanted to know why i like coffee more than ever, which made me respond)

dreams more than reality - because... fuck this. dreams are so much easier. glorified versions of things are so much better than what they really are. until you realize that they are only what they are. it is only better before realization sets in.

beer more than water - because it makes me feel better and happier, and is so fucking good

writing more than talking - because i am not a witty girl. i have to really think about things and process them. and edit myself. i am so much better at putting things into words when i'm not on the spot. i like having time to think and edit, and that will probably never change.

virtual interaction more than real interaction - because i like being in my pjs, in bed, unshowered and sleepy faced. because i like not having to bundle up in the wintertime to go outside. because i don't have to put on makeup. because i can do what i want, when i want, and not leave someone waiting for me. because i'm naturally a flake, who is fighting flakiness.

5. how do i want the world to be different because i lived in it?

i think this and #6 are cheesy questions. but i guess i would say, to have written things circulating in it, even if only a few people read them.

6. how do i want to be different because i lived in this world?

to be responsible to it and minimize my impact on it. i do my part to not consume too much, try not to waste, recycle fanatically and push it on other people.

7. are ___ better people?

pretty people - it's mostly inherent, something pretty people have no control over. but how much science and data exist showing that pretty people have it easier and get rewarded for being pretty. i mean, define better. they have a better chance of landing an attractive other half, having more money, having better luck. and yeah, they make me feel bad about myself. they make me feel like i don't stand a chance.

8. what is my body telling me?

stop smoking
stop drinking
start exercising
make better food choices
get out of bed

9. how much junk could a chic chick chuck if a chic chick could chuck junk?

as it turns out, not much. i don't have a lot, i don't acquire a lot. i've actively worked on eliminating friendships that weren't. and i got rid of a lot when i left ever. i don't buy a lot, due to buyer's remorse. i talk myself out of buying things when i want them or need them.

10. what's so funny?

in general, potty humor

but sometimes i feel like a sad comedian. i crack jokes at my own expense, at my own situation, all the time. it's in an effort to keep myself from crying and giving up. i have to make light of it.

11. where am i wrong?

i have made a lot of mistakes, and i freely admit to that. but the past month or so, with ever, has sent me reeling backwards, because i constantly feel like screaming at him, 'see? i was RIGHT!' all day, every day, he gives me reasons to want to remind him all the ways i was right.

was i a better person when i thought i was wrong all the time? maybe not, because my confidence was lower. but being a self-righteous dick isn't the way i want to go either. i just want to be right about ever. i can be wrong about everything else.

i do love to say 'i told you so', but have been better about not saying it to people i care about, because it makes them feel bad. because nobody likes to be wrong. and i don't want to be a bully, kicking someone while they're down.

12. what potential memories am i bartering, and is the profit worth the price?

i don't really get this, even after reading the explanation. but i think that what i'm doing is waiting for things in my life to change. waiting for time to pass so i can make new memories. and i am completely aware that i could die waiting. i could be so unlucky to not have one more day to get to that point.

sometimes, i tell myself to live every day like it's my last. but i've been spending so much time trying to deal with daily bullshit that i can't say i've been doing it lately.

and always, i tell myself not to put off until tomorrow what i can do today. and that mentality has spared quite a bit of struggle in my life. because i used to be the worst procrastinator. and because i work well under pressure, i kindof lived for it. but in my job, and in my divorce, i take care of everything as it comes up, because too many variables can change, and wreck what you had planned. i had to learn it the hard way. and it's one of the things i think i'm right about, when it comes to ever.

13. am i the only one struggling not to ___ during ___?

crack during my divorce. i know i'm not. but that's what came to mind.

also, hurt someone physically during my divorce. because sometimes i think beating some sense into ever is the only way he will understand. resort to caveman mentality, because apparently, that is what i'm working with.

14. what do i love to practice?

obviously, writing. but it's not like practicing an instrument. it's like the practice of doing it. secondary definition of the word.

if i made more time for it, i'd say art. but i just don't. i enjoy it when i do, but if i loved it, i'd make more time to practice it.

15. where could i work less and achieve more?

uninspired answer: delegate at work more often.

16. how can i keep myself absolutely safe?

not live in a city that is pretty dangerous.

not walk around drunk or after drinking, even if i'm nowhere near drunk.

carry mace.

learn self defense.

have a nest egg.

(the article says you can't.)

17. where should i break the rules?

i'm too lazy to answer this question.

18. so say i lived in that house in tuscany, with untold wealth, a gorgeous, adoring mate, and a full staff of servants... then what?

i am not one of those people who wants to be rich. i just want to not struggle. i think that if i had that life, i'd be bored. who knows? i might go back to school or do something fun with my life, like travel and never stay in one place.

but i learned a long time ago that, if you ask yourself what you would do if you won the lottery, that's what you should be doing with your life. and i try to remember that, and act accordingly.

19. are my thoughts hurting or healing?

my thoughts are always self-defeating, self-deprecating, and negative. but i have been actively trying to change that by doing affirmations and mantras lately.

20. really, truly: is this what i want to be doing?

no. which is why i keep trying to speed this part up, and wish my time away, because i want this part to be over. so i can get to the place where i answer yes.

the post kit inspired me with almost a year ago, about factory settings, truly inspired me. i felt like i could go on for days about that post. and i would probably learn a lot and see how much i've changed if i went back to it now.

i hoped answering these questions would change something in me, but i feel kindof lackluster about it.

self evaluation is always good. and taking my mental pulse is also always good. the first couple questions were the best, and i think that the answers are what should motivate me to make changes at this point in my life.

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