Thursday, July 29, 2010


Before I try to justify my long absence with a list of things that have been plaguing me to no end, I'll just say that I'm sorry. I've really needed an outlet too, but it seems that stress has this way of shutting me down to the point where I'm paralyzed, just existing as it were. So, no blogging, much less writing of any kind. That's horrible.

Well, some things have happened. After my life-changing decision to pursue veganism, I made a huge discovery about myself. It's really not easy to give up cheese. I love cheese. I love the different kinds of cheese - blue cheese, feta, cheddar, Parmesan, mozzarella, heck, even some swiss (okay, maybe not swiss). And while I was able to avoid it for a long time (months), I caved in about a month ago, and let's just say that it hasn't officially stopped. So, instead of calling myself vegan, I say I avoid dairy and eggs, not to mention processed foods and sweeteners. The result of that avoidance is 28 pounds gone (though I've got a ways to go). But I better get back on the ball. There's a cruise in my future, and this ass just won't cut it.

Apparently, my current financial state is as much in limbo as I am. A couple months ago, I was told that my position was being eliminated. Ugh. Really? They couldn't just leave well enough alone? They had to mess me up again, and leave me scrambling to find another position that probably would force a pay cut, not to mention the loss of my third-shift differential. Like the other madness that Walmart has been forcing on associates and customers alike (restructuring and stream-lining selection and store layout - even associates can't find what they're looking for),

I found myself in a bit of a predicament. If I'd been told a month and a half earlier, like I was supposed to be, I would've found something on third shift available. But they didn't, and I was stuck with some lame-ass bakery job. (No offence bakers everywhere.) I discovered two things when I did this. Firstly, the bakery at the store is just barely that. Here's what I mean: the product is purchased from other companies, shipped frozen, and then laid out to rise and baked in these really big ovens. I was seriously disappointed. I thought I'd be learning about different breads and donuts and cakes. I thought I'd be mixing stuff from scratch. Not a rotten chance. I learned how to pop a box open and throw some rolls on a baking sheet. Yay! Whatever.

Secondly, I learned to stick it out in this ridiculous waiting game. Apparently, the accounting office was left in this horrible situation with not enough people (two to be exact), and not enough hours to do what we do (an eight hour shift, as opposed to two and a half). So, Sam made her triumphant reappearance. Technically, I'm still officially a bakery associate until my over-worked assistant manager can fit in the official interview and make me an official accounting associate. Officially. I wonder if I'll get a raise. Hmmm...

What will happen next? I don't know what the future holds for this young plucky girl with a tentative hold on sanity, but I'm sure that the universe has a few tricks up its sleeve, and all will resolve itself in due course. But since I don't know what my employment future was going to bring, I knew I had to make some serious decisions about my horrid (and by horrid, I mean catastrophic) personal finances. Which leads me to the morning I found myself at the office of my bankruptcy attorney.

I remember going to Mapquest for the directions, but even just looking at them on the page, I found myself groaning. Drive through questionable neighborhood? Check.

Arriving a hair early, I found a taped note on the door to ring the bell. Strangely unprofessional setting? Check.

My attorney answered the door, and led me through the building to his office. The building itself was questionable in age, and had obviously been a house in a previous life, much like other buildings lining the street it sat on. The carpet (circa 1967) reeked of mold and cigarettes and the walls were paper-thin, worrying me that maybe everyone in the world was going to hear my business loud and clear. Potentially deadly or deadly embarrassing situation? Check and check?

Don't get me wrong. I knew I was doing the right thing, but in my head, I kept thinking, "Oh my God, what the hell am I doing here?"

Happily, my attorney was reassuring, and professional, and completely non-judgmental (at least not to my face, which is good enough). So the ball is rolling. I have my hearing with my creditors on the ninth, and after that, I have to wait sixty days for objections and then I'm done. That's not to say there won't be problems. But I need something of a clean slate. A do-over.

So, as the relief of it all hasn't exactly arrived yet, I'm feeling that the in-between stage of everything in my life at the moment has made some room for creativity, the kind I haven't experienced in a long time. And so, the idea that I will move on and become the person I really want to be is on the horizon, in view even. I'm just not there yet. But at least there is a promise of it.

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