Chapter Twenty-Three: The Coming of the End

Life is full of surprises. There is always a new adventure hiding around the next corner. As everyone knows, Chicago is my city. I love it there, I am happiest there, and I live over five hours away from there. I did, however, make a trip to the city a little over a week ago for the gay pride parade. Let me tell you, it was everything I dreamed it would be and more. I went with my brother and two friends and we had a blast. I bought a rainbow flag that says Born This Way, I rocked the parade without a shirt, and I got a lot of goodies thrown my way. It was truly one of the best days of my life. I even met one of the sexiest guys I have ever met at the train station. I could barely bring myself to get on the train just to go back to Beecher, let alone get on the train to come back to St. Louis.

This is when I made one of the biggest decisions of my college career. I have decided that I am going to apply to transfer to a pharmacy school in Chicago. I believe that it is going to be one of the best decisions I have made in a very long time. It was also an extremely hard decision for me to make. As I have mentioned in a few of my blog posts, I have made some of the best friends while I have been out here. I have the best close group circle a person could ask for, and I also have a lot of amazing friends that aren’t in my inner-circle that are going to be hard to leave. I feel like I have betrayed them to some extent, but even so they have been nothing but supportive of my decision. They all know how much my city means to me and how much I want to go back to it.

I do want to clear the air about something. A lot of people have asked me why I moved to St. Louis in the first place if I love Chicago so much. The answer is pretty simple, actually. I chose STLCOP partially because it was not extremely far from Chicago but also because of how quick the program was. The PCAT is not required, taking away part of the stress of school, and it is a guaranteed six year program assuming that you pass every class. Another big reason for choosing St. Louis was because I needed to move out. I was going to be able to commute to Chicago if I chose a school up there. That was not about to happen. I needed to move out of my house. I needed to experience the world under my terms. It has truly made all of the difference.

Now conditions are different. My parents are moving south, so I will have to find a place in the city to live. But even if they didn’t move I would still choose to live in the city because it would be extremely hard for me to transition back into living with my parents. They aren’t a fan of me coming back home at two in the morning, showering, and being back up at six or seven in the morning to start a new day. In addition, the PCAT is not going to be as hard because of the pharmacy applications of all of my classes I have taken at STLCOP. I am looking at these two years here as a super expensive community college that was forever and a half away from where I want to be. My stress levels will still be high in Chicago, but I’m sure they can’t be anything in comparison to STLCOP.

This is just a shout out to some of the people that I am leaving. I am going to miss randomly texting Leah up to tell her we need to go on an adventure to the mall or to the river. I am going to miss the fun “games” McKinzie and I play when we need to relieve stress. I am going to miss my walks through Forest Park with Greg past the Spider Tree. I am going to miss my fights over stupid stuff with Clancey. I am going to miss Mackinzie’s southern accent and Struggle’s very blunt attitude. I am going to miss my one-on-one dinner dates with Jocelyn while we talk about everything and everything. I am going to miss Liz yelling at me for starting our friendship off on a lie and I am going to miss obsessing over tea with Libby. I am going to miss Patrick shaking his head at me for no reason other than I said hi or smiled at him. I am going to miss my bike rides with Casey and I am going to miss how positive Merissa is no matter what. I am going to miss Wiggles always being lost at some point in the conversation. I am going to miss the weekly Applebee’s trips and the fun nights at Wild Country. I am going to miss hanging out with Tasha at the Kappa Psi house while we swim and talk about everything. I am going to miss the regular insults from Casey. I’ll really miss the real talks with Kacee and smoking hookah with Katelyn. And those are just the friends I have solid memories with. There are tons of other people that I am going to miss that I have gotten to know through eating terrible meals in the dorms with. I’ll miss the people who talked through class with me because the teacher was going off on some rant about something that only the teacher knows about. This is why it is going to be so hard for me. In just under a year I have forged such strong bonds with so many people. They have been there for me through thick and then, when I was doing incredibly stupid things, when I really just needed a shoulder to cry on, and when everything was amazing. I couldn’t ask for better friends, and it is going to kill me on my ride back home after second year.

Back to a happier note, I still have another year. That is the same amount of time I have known most of these people, so there is still plenty of time for me to make new memories to take with me as I leave. I still have time to teach the incoming first year students my shenanigans. So for now I look to the future with bright eyes. I am going to love my friends and I am going to enjoy every second I have with them. Here is to you guys, the people that have made my year away from my city the best year of my life.

Chapter Twenty-Two: A Year of Lessons

At this point I have made it back to where I started my college career. I tagged along with some of our incoming first years and had an amazing time. It is so weird because they all look so, well for a lack of a better word, young. So I sat down and started thinking about all of the things that I learned over the year. It truly is amazing how much has happened and how much I have changed.

When it comes to friends, I have always just had a little circle and hung out with them. That was completely changed this year. I started hanging out with a bunch of different friend groups. I fit in equally well even if the groups themselves probably wouldn’t get along too much. The best part about being a part of so many groups was that when certain “friends” stopped talking to me I wasn’t devastated. I wasn’t left alone. Each hardship was accompanied with a lesson and a reminder of who my true friends are.

I also learned a lot about forgiveness. It really surprised me when I looked back on this one because I didn’t realize that I had learned something. Forgiving doesn’t mean forgetting. It just means putting it aside and not bringing it up again. I have had to ask for forgiveness. I have also given forgiveness to people that didn’t ask to be forgiven. Sometimes it is easier to just brush it away than to let it sit on your mind and eat you away. It doesn’t mean you have to be chummy with the person. It doesn’t mean you have to talk to the person. You just let go, and move on. You don’t have to trust them again. You don’t have to give them a big part of your life. You act civil, hold your head high, and never let them hurt you again.

Love and relationships was also a big thing this year, especially just recently. I have been cheated on, been the person that someone cheats with, and regrettably been the person that cheated. It hurts to be cheated on. It kills. The guilt of cheating on someone was just as bad though. I still haven’t been able to forgive myself but I have moved on from it. Being the “other person” was probably the dirtiest I have ever felt. I was able to get out of that situation before it went too far though. It is a position I refuse to be in ever again.

I found myself on lots of dates over the past year. They were nice because I was able to get a sense of what kind of guys there are out there. I don’t have a type so if anyone took a look at the people I dated they would be so shocked about the wide variety of people I have dated. But this really isn’t the life for me. Dating is to short term. I want something more than that.

That lesson took a very special person to teach it to me. Long story short, just to keep his identity safe, there was this kid. He was awesome. Cute, fun, entertaining, and just a great guy. We did a lot of talking one night. Let me tell you, the butterflies this kid gave me were so intense I swear I still feel my stomach doing summersaults. Sadly, I have done bad things in my life and Karma finally decided she wanted to get even with me. He has someone else in his life and I couldn’t be happier for him. What I did learn in this story though was that maybe I haven’t lost all chances at finding a good guy. That one really great guy back from high school wasn’t the only chance a true happiness I have. After meeting this kid I haven’t been able to return to my usual dating scene. I can’t even begin to think to open Grindr anymore. OKCupid is still installed on my phone, but I could care less about it. It took me about two and a half years to find someone who thawed out my frozen heart and soul. Maybe it takes two and a half more years wandering the streets of the single life. Maybe it takes ten years. Maybe it takes a good sixty years and I upload my conscious into a robot and find another person and we hack into the system and rule the world side by side as robot overlords that are madly in love with each other. They say that everyone has seven perfect matches. I have found two of my seven already, but that means that there are still five more out there waiting for me to find them.

For now I will stick to healing. I might be stitching my heart back together at this point, but I’m not forgetting to stitch hope into it this time. I think that is why there are people out there that have cold hearts. While rushing to put their heart back together they forgot to put hope in there. So keep hope in your heart, because somewhere, somehow, your prince or princess is out there waiting for you. Sometimes you just have to wait for them to show up at the grand ball.

Chapter Twenty-One: Tetris MASTER

We have all been there. You have a ton of stuff that you need to pack in a little space. Sometimes it is trying to pack up the dinner food in the smallest number of bags while using the smallest bags you can find. That is the beginner level. Then there is the next level. You are going to move soon so you start packing your belongings into boxes. This is where strategy comes in. Books, cd’s and DVDs usually get put in the same box due to their shape. Then you have binders, notebooks, folders, and loose papers that either get thrown into a backpack or a box. This is definitely harder than packing up dinner, but it isn’t controversial.

Controversial packing is packing for a vacation. How do you fold your clothes? Do you individually fold each shirt? Do you stack them on each other then fold? Are you a roller? Does your suitcase look like a big stack of taquitos because you individually roll each shirt or does it look like a couple of big burrito’s because you roll a stack of shirts? Personally, I have a big suitcase full of burritos. It is the only way I see everything fit. So now that everything is packed up, we are on to the biggest challenge of all, packing the car!

The car is easily the hardest thing to pack, You have boxes that fit nicely together except for the fact that the inside of your car is slightly rounded so you feel bad wasting those spaces. Then there is the suitcases that aren’t perfectly fitting together so you go an throw the blanket you were bring on top of them because you can stuff it between the cracks. Then there is the big furniture if you are moving. There really is no way pack such things without wasting precious space. I have become a master at playing Tetris in my car and have proven it today. I packed an end table, bedside table, two king side pillows, multiple blankets, 6 boxes, a mop, broom, and a mop bucket in the back of my small SUV with still enough room to fit three people. This being said, I think that this trip tomorrow is going to be a lot of fun. Especially when I am able to unpack and let watch the belongings I have so artfully crammed into a car sprawl out into my new apartment. :)

Chapter Twenty: Nopeing and Feels

This blog post is dedicated to any person who has ever finished a book, book series, television series, or anything like that and didn’t know how to readjust to day-to-day life. Please note that I didn’t say real life because to us, that book or whatever you just finished was real. The characters became your friends. You felt their pain. You laughed with them. You were there when they started their journey and you stuck with them to the very end. There were good times and there were bad times but you didn’t care. You were there for them no matter what. Then the series ended and you have to think about what to do next.

This brings me to my first topic which is nopeing. Nopeing occurs when you realize it is over. Here is a typical reaction of Kyle nopeing.

The credits started rolling as his series ended. “Nope,” Kyle cried as he fell to the floor in tears. “Nope nope nope nope nope. I can’t. This is just to. How do I even? What is? Why? Nope. I refuse. Where is the next episode?” “Kyle,” a friend will reply, “It is just a show. You can find a new one.” “And just forget about this one?! I CAN’T! THAT IS BLASPHMEY!” “You need some serious help…” “I KNOW! IT’S BECAUSE THIS IS OVER AND I CAN’T EVEN RIGHT NOW!” Kyle then proceeds to get up and slam his friend across the head with a folding chair.

Let’s take a minute to analyze this little scene. Notice the incompleteness of the sentences. Sentences are usually fragments during the nopeing period. Sometimes thoughts race so fast the a person can only get out a small part of the sentence before it seems absolutely crucial to speak the next sentence. Other times this is due to the total and utter disbelief. The brain is working so hard to process information at this point that forming full sentences is on the bottom of the list of priorities.

Next there is the all caps rage, also know as screaming(usually through the tears flowing as if they were rivers and creating the saltiest of oceans at your feet.) Some people do not understand the nopeing stage. Society has terms for these people like “normal” and “sane” but I usually think of them as sad. They don’t have the emotional capacity to deeply connect with a fictional character and can only see the story at face value. This screaming is normal and should be treated cautiously. Nothing is more dangerous than a person in the nopeing stage. They are fragile but more deadly than a nuclear bomb. The best way to deal with them is to not talk. Just walk away. Maybe leave some food but don’t confront the beast. You can be talking to the nicest person you know but if they are in the process of nopeing they are deadly and will attack. Casualties are rare, but they do happen so be very weary.

The second-best thing you can do without getting killed is find someone who has been in that particular nopeing stage in the past. It has to be the same show or else this does not work. Because they have been through this they can be very beneficial to the current person nopeing. However, if the person who is helping out hasn’t fully healed and left the nopeing stage you have a bigger problem on your hands. They will laugh, cry, conspire, and even start World War III together. Eventually this stage does end. It takes time, but you can move on with your life and find a new show or book to destroy your life again.

Next, I want to talk about feels. Feels is a concept that every single person on tumblr is aware of. There is still some confusion among other individuals about what feels are, so I’ll do my best to break this one down. Feels are emotions. Feels can be good but usually are bad. Feels are usually caused by people who are Satan’s servants. These people are extremely evil and want to ruin your life. A typical Full Metal Alchemist feels comment relates to a chimera. A chimera is a combination of two unlike creatures. In one of the early episodes of the show there is an alchemist who creates a talking chimera. How does he do this? He binds his young daughter to the family dog. The main character Edward doesn’t realize they were fused together until the dog speaks Ed’s name. It is tragic and horrible and makes you cry your eyes out. Now, what people on the internet do is they make specific comments on this to tear your heart apart. The most recent one I saw was lyrics to a song. “Cat goes meow, mouse goes squeak, bird goes tweet and dog goes Ed…..ward.” This slams everyone who has ever loved Full Metal Alchemist right in the feels. Feels can make people shut down. Feels can emotionally scar a person. Feels can cause severe depression and even send someone to the hospital on a suicide watch. Avoid these feels at all cost. Finally, feels can lead to a minor case of nopeing, so take caution at all times when dealing with a person who is in their feels.

None of these terms are technical. They vary from person to person, but homicidal tendencies are extremely common, so please take extreme caution. This blog was partially to let those people who suffer from nopeing and feels to know that they are not alone. More importantly, this is a warning post to those who have friends who suffer. While I could teach an entire class on this topic, this is the bare minimum amount of information that people need to keep themselves safe. If you have any questions, please feel free to comment away and I will do my best to answer.

Chapter Nineteen: Dorm Room

So, as many people know, I am a sentimental person. I think a lot. I analyze and try to understand. I also like to be nostalgic and remember things. Today I was studying for an upcoming exam and I had a huge moment. I started thinking about my room and how much has happened over the course of my first year of college. My walls have seen the fun I have had and also so many things that have brought me to be who I am today.

The lesser of the intimate rooms is the common room that I share with my other three roommates. I have played countless games of Cards Against Humanity and Monopoly in this room. The shenanigans that have gone down are to numerous to count. From cross-dressing to a Christmas-party to tattoo planning to building pillow forts, the common room has seen everything. It may never be clean, but it always has had the homey lived in feel to it. Even though it is a more public room, it has even seen a few secretes. It has seen talks that lasted until four in the morning. It has seen me at my lowest of lows and even my highest of highs.

The common room hasn’t been used much this semester, but last semester it was the place to be. It was where we held game night every week. It was where we would study between classes. It was where we would gossip about boys and where we would trash talk the people that hurt us. It was where we planned great missions, and where we made delicious meals. It has seen tea parties, movies, and many Mario Kart races.

But that is just the common room. My bedroom is where the real nostalgia lies. This is where I spent my first night living alone. It is where I retired to after my first party. It is where I spent a entire nights talking with people just growing and learning about each other. People have come out of the closet to me in this room, and people have told me they loved me in this room. (Lies, I might add, but it happened.) It is where I did my studying, my crying when I didn’t study enough, and where I had a few major epiphanies at. It is where I have relaxed after major Hell-Weeks and where I have knitted hats to be donated. It is where I have written many of my blogs and where I have had sleepovers. I’ve also killed plenty of spiders in there, so whoever lives in that room next year, this is your warning. Run fast, run far, and do not look back. That is, unless you like spiders, then you should just get out because I don’t think you are human.

Now I bring this up for a reason, and that reason isn’t because I’m bored and it definitely isn’t because I am avoiding paying attention in physics class because I love physics and love lecture and I would never do anything like that. Cherish your year in the dorms. So much happens from the first time you sleep in that ungodly uncomfortable bed to the time you start packing up to move out. You are going to grow both physically, mentally, and emotionally. You are going to laugh, cry, and snap. You are going to party and you are going to vegetate. You are going to live your life and you are going to be amazed at how much has changed over one measly year. Every Hell-Week will seem to drag by, every exam will seem to loom in the near future, but all of a sudden your second semester is wrapping up and the year has flown by and you realize how much you have really down between classes, work, and being social. You will look back and look at the roller coaster of emotions and insanity known as college. Personally, I wouldn’t trade any of my experience this year for anything. Even through the tears, the nights spent awake studying, the emotions of a heartbreak, and  the looming presence of student loans, I have had an amazing year and am sad to leave my little dorm room. I will, fortunately, be here over the summer to get a head start with making new memories in my apartment.

Chapter Eighteen: Spring Cleaning and Facebook Friends

It is that special and magical time of the year again. The time when every person is getting sick of their messes they didn’t clean up due to sheer apathy. For anyone who knows me or has seen where I live, this is a very severe undertaking. Clean the fish tank. Throw away the fifty to-go cups in my room along with the 8 cases worth of empty Ski cans. And you are chuckling under your breath because of these numbers, but don’t get me wrong. When I say these numbers, I mean them. I’m on my third garbage bag and still don’t have the superficial garbage cleaned up yet. I have a pretty bad problem when it comes to beverages. I drink gallons of liquids a day and boy does it show.

But spring cleaning means more than just cleaning up you room for the summer. This year it means getting ready to move into my first apartment. While I am more than thrilled to get out of the dorms, I am not thrilled with having to repack all of my crap to move it. I’m not moving states away. I’m not moving cities away. I am moving two freaking blocks away. Two. That’s it. And I have to pack and do all of this fun jazz for two blocks. However, I will digress.

Another lesser known form of spring cleaning is what I like to refer to as Facebook Cleaning. All it is me going down my friends list and deleting people that I just don’t care to see anymore. People from high school I no longer talk to. Random people I thought I knew but really didn’t. Ex-boyfriends and two-faced people are also deleted along with people who do nothing other than post ten million selfies.

Something that I really learned this years cleaning is that there are three main characteristics of friends that are my age. First you have the so-gushy-and-cute-you-just-want-to-puke people. These are your friends that jump started their life and are getting married and having kids. Second are the alcoholics, stoners, druggies, and bums. We all know these people. You can notice these people in high school, but their numbers will grow once you get to college. This effect is very clearly explained by my grandmother. Her theory is that you have these kids in high school that are straight A students that don’t do anything wrong. They are always coddled by their parents and led sheltered lives up till college. Then they get their long awaited first taste of freedom. They take to the parties and drink and party until they are failing adding them to the second group of Facebook friends. That leaves you with the legitimately good kids. The people who religiously study. The ones who might go to a party here and there, but much prefer more legal forms of fun such as movies, significant others, and even volunteering. Those are the three groups, but none of them are better than the others. Just like there are two sides to a coin there are two sides to each group. There are nice and trustworthy stoners/alcoholics/druggies/bumbs and there are hypocritical and two-faced “good kids”.

Coming back to spring cleaning, there is only one thing left to do once your house/apartment/room/facebook is clean. Finally I’m to the personal image part. This involves cutting hairs. Usually I would go out and get my hair cut or trimmed, but considering that I just shaved all of my hair I don’t really have much to trim yet. So I will settle with shaving and call it a day because thank God I am a male and don’t have to shave my legs.

Happy spring cleaning!

Chapter Seventeen: Classes at STLCOP

Remember in high school when you went to seven or eight different classes every day? None of your classes had anything to do with each other except maybe calculus lining up with your physics class for a brief period of time. Those were the days. Gym, English, Math, Science, History, and a coupe of electives. I miss that so much that it isn’t even funny.

Let me explain. The classes that I have taken so far include General Chemistry 1 and 2, Physics, Anatomy, Biology, Calculus, Psychology, and Critical Thinking and Writing. Except for Critical Thinking and Writing, every single class has related to a different class. Lets start at Calculus. In Calc, we learned to take derivatives. That linked to Physics where we are shown how to derive different equations to help us understand where some of our equations come from. In Physics we connected to General Chemistry when we talked about gas and pressure laws and briefly when we talked about electricity. We connected Physics also to Anatomy and Biology when it comes to the depolarization in neurons. Anatomy is a continuation of Biology that is focused on the human body, so there is a lot of overlap. Anatomy related to Psychology when we talked about different neurotransmitters and what they effect. Anatomy taught us the areas of the brain and Psychology taught us what was happening in those areas. Technically, if you squinted your eyes and hallucinated a bit, you could say that Psychology related to Critical Thinking and Writing because you have to anticipate what a counter argument would be to your thesis. You could also connect Psychology to every single class and say that you need to Psychoanalyze all of your teachers to figure out how to get exams pushed back, write a paper in a way the teacher likes it and gives you a better grade, and persuade the teacher to push back exams to help avoid terrible hell-weeks.

There is a reason for this, and there is a reason for me ranting about it. The reason they all connect is because they all connect in ways that are useful in the Pharmacy field. Every class has had some sort of a connection to pharmacy that cannot be ignored. Calculus taught us how to monitor the amount of a drug in the bloodstream. Biology gave us a brief insight of how a few different drugs worked. Anatomy is preparing us for general hospital work. Psychology is teaching us how to come up with plans to help patients take their medication regularly. Chemistry is just giving us a basis for later courses, so it is more indirect, but it will be helpful in the future. But we all know that feeling that we get when there isn’t a lot of variety in our lives. But that is the end of my rant. Everyone enjoy your weekend!