Spring Thaw

I’ve been busy being depressed, watching Netflix, and procrastinating everything in my life. It reminds me a lot of when I was graduating from Macalester, and I’m mad at myself for falling into the same habits. I haven’t written, partially because of all of this, and also because I’m not always sure if I want to continue having a public blog. I started this blog, and have maintained it, because I think other people go through the same things I do, and it could be helpful for them. Yet, I wonder if it will ever hurt my chances at finding a job. Or worse, hurt someone I care about. It is a delicate balance that I am always very mindful of, but sometimes I make the wrong decisions. A friend of mine recently shared her own story though, and it reminded me of the reasons I will continue to share my own.

One example of fear related to a job… I recently went to Utah for an interview. The highlights were endless: the company is a small, fun technology firm; I would be a manager to 10+ high potential recent grads; they allow puppies in the office; culturally, I loved everyone I met. On the other hand though, it is in Utah, which is far from the NYC in which I envision myself living. Both geographically and culturally. I was really concerned about how me having a public life could influence my ability to lead a strong team. Would they have doubts in my leadership abilities because I have publicly stated I’ve dealt with depression? Would I be less effective with my subordinates knowing details of my personal life? I’ve never pretended to be religious, but I would also be nervous that my openness could be frightening to some of the more religious and conservative people that are in the majority in this small town in Utah.

In the 6 weeks since this interview, I’ve come to realize a few things about myself. First off, I’m just a candidly open person, both online and in person. I don’t say anything on the internet that I wouldn’t say in real life, and whenever I do have the opportunity to manage a team, I will carry this strength with me. I believe it makes me both relatable and inspiring, and is something I would value in a manger of my own.

Next, Utah isn’t for me. It is beautiful, absolutely, and I would love to vacation there sometime. Yet, I need to live in a big city. I love being able to walk everywhere and not have to worry about a car. I love being able to run down stairs and across the street to get my Starbucks coffee. I need to have a neighborhood bar when Joe and I can go after work for a drink or two, and not have to worry about driving home. I also feel that there is just more going on in NYC. My Macalester community, Girls in Tech, book clubs, etc., will all be available in New York. Sure, they could be in Utah too, but there would be fewer options and a longer commute to any of them.

Learning these things about me, that I want to be in NYC and that I’m really excited about managing a team (and believe I’ll be really great at it), took a while. I had been applying to a ton of data analytics positions, both because that’s what I know and because it is what I’m good at. Yet, it isn’t what completely excites me. So, today I still don’t have a job, but I know a lot more about what I’m looking for and can be more fierce in tracking that down. For now, I’m pushing down the fears that I’m a fraud and can’t actually positively contribute to a company. I’m happy it is finally spring.

A memorial day

I’ve been in such a funk these last few days that I just can’t seem to break out of. I’m pretty sure the sun will never shine again in Minnesota, and that’s a pretty depressing place to be.

This past Friday, a girl I went to middle school with lost her daughter. Her beautiful 2 year old went missing while they were camping, and she was discovered in the water after what I can only imagine to be the most unbelievably painful 2 days. I didn’t know her that well when we went to school together. We had a few classes with each other; I always thought she was a very sweet girl. Sometimes, things like this hit me harder than others, and this one, because it feels so close to home, is ripping me apart. The pain I can only imagine that family is going through is just tragic.

On not even remotely the same scale, but still affecting my mood, is that today I just found out that my two most desired things are pretty much incompatible. Stanford housing doesn’t allow for pets of any kind. I’ve looked for apartments/rentals nearby, and nothing seems to accept pets. This means that I can’t even get a puppy right now if I want to have the ability to go to Stanford next year and that really sucks.

I’ve been thinking about a puppy more and more and even put in an application with the place I want to get him from. I had intended to get him before the winter because I know that he will help me be a happier person during the terrible winter months. And even though I haven’t met him yet, I know he would love California so much.

Joe is encouraging me to look into the policies at/near the other universities I am applying. That in itself feels disingenuous – I want Stanford and I know I can get in. I understand applying to other places as safeties… but this feels different.

As I was lying on the couch though, unable to motivate myself to do so much as even turn on the TV, I couldn’t imagine ever leaving this black hole to succeed in Business School. I allow myself to waste an entire weekend when I have work and writing and Girls in Tech things I could be working on – how on earth do I think I could fight my way through school again? This place I’m in is so dark it feels like I’ll never break out and I should probably just stop reaching for my goals now.

After my two hour nap and then direct migration to bed, Joe set up my light box to use in the morning. After the move to our condo, I hadn’t really found a suitable place for it and kept it packed away. I was also hopeful that my depression was just seasonal and now that it is “spring” I should fall out of it. But apparently I haven’t. So, I’m pretty thankful I have Joe to remind me that this place I am now may not be permanent.

From Hot Glue Guns to…

When I was in middle school, I carried a hot glue gun with me at all times. Just before this started, someone had asked if I had one. Being the sarcastic seventh grader I was, I said “oh yes, I have one right here in my back pocket.” I then realized how funny that would have been, and decided that going forward I would never leave home without a hot glue gun again.

Well, that only lasted for about 3 years. I got sick of carrying it with me and never being asked again if I had one. I think word got out and therefore everyone conspired to never ask me for one. Even though the hot glue gun went away, the sentiment never did. Ever since then, I like to be the one that is prepared, thinking of any possible need before it actually arises.

So, after years of questioning why I’ve been moving around a spare keyboard that I asked for for Christmas in 2005 but never actually used, it finally came in handy. I was just a year away from making the transition from desktop to laptop, and haven’t looked back. Yet, the keyboard is actually really cool; it is a backlit keyboard where you can change the color of the backlights (red, blue or purple). You would love it.

Anyway, after months of chomping away on the loudest keyboard in man’s history, Joe looks up and asks “does my keyboard bother you?” To which I replied honestly, “it only sounds like nails on a chalkboard my love.” He was supportive though “oh, I guess I should start thinking about getting a new one.” I blank stared for a while, thinking if I still had it, when I finally pinpointed its location. I knew it was in the basement storage unit in my apartment, and it just happened to be the second tub from the top. We ran down there, and let’s just say, you’d think I’d have gotten him a new Christmas puppy “oh my gosh, I have never had a keyboard this wonderful and new in my whole entire life.” Mission. Accomplished.

Puppy puppy puppy

I want a puppy so bad. I would name him Chrome or Charlie and he would be the cutest puppy in the whole entire world. In a recent post I talked about how much a puppy would make me happy, and he totally would. I’ve done further research into the subject though and I picked out the exact kind I want so now I’m even more excited about getting a puppy.

There are so many open questions though. Did you know that puppies are really expensive? First, the puppy I ultimately decided on is a tiny mini golden doodle. Here is a good cute picture of one to get us on the same page:

aaaaaaawwwww!!! Isn’t he the cutest thing in the world that kind of looks like a stuffed animal? He is only the low low price of like, $2500 to get him from a breeder. Joe says that is a shit ton to spend on a puppy, but I counter that with “but is it too much to spend on your best friend?” That put a stop to that discussion (for now probably).

Next is the minor detail that the apartment we currently live in doesn’t allow puppies. This would mean we need to move some place that allows puppies. Fortunately, I found this wonderful new apartment building that is just being built right now! 222hennepin.com is where you can find more deets, but the gist is, it is no longer of a commute to work, it will be directly on top of a Whole Foods, and they have a leash-free doggy zone! Draw backs though? Rent is more expensive, and we would need to move. Lets approximate it at $500 more per month, taking into account the differences in parking, utilities, etc. For additional costs of the application, moving, and the new (bigger) security deposit: $3,000.

Then, I also hear one is supposed to feed their dogs too, so, I Googled “cost of a puppy first year” and came a quote of $1100-3500 for the first year (thanks to the lovely folks at About). Let’s be honest here, Chromy deserves the finer things in life, so the figure will be towards the $3500 side.

All in all, 15k for the first year if I can handle math after my morning mimosa. But, there are still more things to consider. Do I want to go to grad school with a puppy? What happens to Charlie in the case of a break up? What about my pink couch that I love so much? Will he bite it? What if we need to go on vacation? We’ll have to get a puppy sitter and it isn’t like we would have money for a vacation anyway after how much he is going to cost. Agck! I didn’t even consider the costs of puppy classes! Oh, wait, I guess About.com figured that in. High five!