Wifi

Tonight I am having trouble sleeping because I got hyper focused on a technological project. I accepted a job to teach music in rural Colorado beginning in August. The apartment I have is very nice, but it did not come with wifi. Last week I spent five hours one day trying to get an Internet connection to my apartment, only to find out that CenturyLink is at capacity in my town due to outdated infrastructure among other things. The only other option is slow satellite Internet. Fortunately CenturyLink is in negotiations to tap off of a fiber line that runs through the area.

Now you have the background, so let me explain the project. I have an iPhone, but Verizon has any tethering or hotspot potential locked down tight (without jailbreaking) so I cannot use that feature without paying $20 a month for it. I remembered that I had an old Palm Pre+ hanging around, and seemed to recall tethering ability with it, so I swapped my number to the older phone.

WebOS was a great idea that should have been developed, but HP was dumb. Now its App Catalogue is not so functional, and the tether function was no longer free. Bummer, right? Not so much. See, using some software to install programs from my desktop I was able to get some apps up and running, as well as find a tethering app that is free and works well. My problem is that now I trying to get all of my iCloud calendars to sync to google so they will show up on my phone, and trying to find more apps, and all sorts off stuff other than sleeping… Hyper focus is lame.

So, mental illness blows…

Today I am thinking about how much mental illness sucks. I had to go to my parents’ house to go through some boxes of my stuff from high school, which was an interesting experience. See, all through high school, or at least the first year and a half of it, I was convinced that I had no friends, that people were jut putting up with me because they felt sorry for me. Then I finally went on some antidepressants that helped me to be a little more stable. I found the signing insert for my senior year’s yearbook amongst the other junk, and took a minute to scan through it.

To be honest it was kind of a bittersweet thing, I realized that there were a lot of people that I could have been very close to if I had just bothered to call. I was always too afraid though, afraid that they would say no, that they would ‘t want to hang out with me. Even if they said yes I would still have been afraid that they didn’t actually want to be there, they just felt too bad for me to say no. Realizing that years later left me with a little regret.

Mental illness is not something you can mess around with and just ignore. I spent years with anxiety and depression before I finally had the guts to speak up about it to my parents. Even then, I only did it after a girl I really liked told me she couldn’t be with me because I was too unstable. There were times I cried at school and didn’t even know why I was crying. There were times that the sadness was so intense it was like I could feel it physically, like somebody had punched me in the chest.

I don’t usually like to talk about it too much, I guess the reason I am willing to share here is twofold, in part because I want to get it off my chest so I can sleep, and because I hope that maybe somebody will read this and be touched by my experience, or inspired to do something to improve their situation. Asking for help, or taking medication is not a sign of weakness; if anything it shows tremendous amount of strength. It takes true strength to open up to others and admit your weaknesses, especially if you are already afraid of what they think about you.

So if you read this, and I really have no idea who will, and you need help, please know that you are worth it. You have a lot to offer. Consult a doctor or psychiatrist, find medication or therapy regimen that is right for you. Don’t wait until you start to accumulate regrets.

Trying to get better

Here’s to old friends, and to communication. See, my wife and I were feeling kind of hurt by some friends of ours; it seemed that whenever we tried to plan things with the they were always busy, and communication between my wife and her friend was sketchy. Texts were not returned, and my wife was in a self-imposed social media exile. We began to wonder if it was worth it to try and plan anything, and we fell somewhat out of touch for almost two years. We still had a little contact over Facebook, but not a lot.

Today we went to visit these friends, since my wife and I are moving out of the area, and finally got a chance to talk. We were surprised to find that these friends actually had lot of stressful stuff going on, stuff the had not shared before. It was nice to know that there was a good reason for what was going on, but it was also a bit of a shame.

This is where communication comes in. If my wife and I had asked if they needed help, maybe they would have opened up. On the flip side, they are our friends, and should know that we are always happy to help. We thought we were being blown off, but that was not the case. A little communication goes a long way.

Guys, I’m really bad at this…

I feel bad about how I have not paid attention to this blog. Things have started to get crazy in my life, and while it is fun to share with the world, blogging kind of gets put on the back burner. I really should get on my laptop and take the post a day badge off, I failed miserably at it… Oh well, can’t be great at everything.

Tonight I am having trouble sleeping, I’m not sure why. I spent a lovely evening with family, but tonight all I can think of is old friends, some that I still see, others I haven’t seen in several years. I have never been great at having friends, in fact to this day I have relatively few. Some seem to come and go in and out of my life, some are gone for good.

Perhaps my brain is telling me that I need to learn to be a better friend, a better listener, a better communicator even. I think that being able to maintain good friendly relationships is an asset when it comes to maintaining good professional relationships. We learn to see past our friends’ flaws and to appreciate them for who they really are. Imagine how different your workplace would be if everyone were willing to give you the benefit of the doubt?

I guess my brain is trying to help me understand this so that I can be more effective in working with my fellow teachers.

Daily Prompt: Evasive Action

Secrets are an interesting part of the human experience, in part because there are so many reasons that we keep secrets. One may keep a secret to avoid confrontation, to cover up past indiscretions, to keep valuable knowledge from someone who may use it in a negative manner, or perhaps just to have a silly inside joke with a friend. Sometimes the secret you keep is yours, and sometime it belongs to someone else; the secret I’ve chosen to write about was not mine, though I was asked to keep it.

Honestly, this is probably not the biggest secret I’ve kept, but as this is a public blog I do wish to keep some degree of privacy. This secret did eventually get out, and it was my fault that it did, but I did it with the best of intentions. This is a high school story, a “drama” that was really a small thing, but seemed huge at the time.

I had a friend who was dating another friend, she had been in a couple of bad relationships, he was mostly just interested in a physical relationship. It was a bad combination, and I kind of saw it coming when he started cheating. We were driving back to my house to pick up some stuff before an afternoon rehearsal, and we picked up a girl who had missed her bus on the way. My friend started talking to her about music, and it turned out they liked the same music. He thought she was attractive, so he dropped me off at rehearsal and said he was going to take her home and be right back. Needless to say, he didn’t show up at rehearsal that day. I saw him the next morning, and he spilled his guts, all about how he had “hooked up” with this girl; then he made me promise not to tell his girlfriend (who was also my friend).

He kept at it over the next few weeks, until I was finally fed up with hearing about it. I knew that if my other friend found out she would be upset, but I figured it was better coming from a friend than finding out otherwise. I finally took her aside and told her what was going on. She was not terribly surprised (the guy had a reputation in the first place) and took it pretty well. She broke up with him, and I was in the doghouse for a couple of days, but he eventually realized that he had been a real jerk and that I had every right to tell my friend to save her the emotional breakup later on.

It all turned out pretty well, we all remained friends after that, I felt lucky that nothing went worse than it did.

Moving On

So I hit a milestone in my life yesterday, I graduated from college. Not technically I guess, since I still have a couple of classes to finish up online, but those will be done in June. It’s a really strange feeling, and honestly it hasn’t quite sunk in yet. I think part of the reason for that is that I have played at so many of my university’s commencement exercises as a musician that it didn’t really feel like a big deal.

In any case, I have to move on now, and I do so with a little hesitation. Moving on is scary, it requires you to take risks, move into territory that is unfamiliar, and confront the unknown. I have been having a tough time trying to find a teaching position, which is scary as well. I guess time will tell how this will turn out, and I should just enjoy being along for the ride, but that is easier said than done.

Whoops…

Man have I ever been terrible at getting daily posts out! Luckily summer is here and I have more time to blog. Hopefully in the coming weeks I will have big job news to blog about, along with new scenery, and new people! Here are a couple of pictures of my babies as a token of my apology. 🙂

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