This Post Doesn’t Even Merit a Title

WELL HELLLOOOOO THERE! I’m shouting because I’m so excited! It’s been so long… actually, it’s been so long I’m sure most of you have forgotten me and need reminding of who I actually am. Here’s a few prompts to get your head muscles tingling:

Cats, tequila, bad dancing, puns…

Remember me now?! No? Okay, that’s fine. Expect your dead squirrel in the mail in five to six working days. Lol, I kid. (It’ll be a live squirrel and he’ll do tricks for you.)

So…I don’t even know where to start. I guess I should start with a logical rundown on my life since I last posted since I know you all care so much. *tumbleweed… wolf howl… cricket*

-I love my job very much and feel very privileged to work in such an amazing school. I’m so happy there.

-I can’t really post about my love life but it’s all good. DM me hun 😘

-One of my dogs sadly passed away. Miss you everyday, Molly.

-I got an SUV and honestly, I’m too small for it but who cares. I feel like Cher in Clueless.

-I have to move house which has made me all kinds of antsy but illbefineomgihopeso

-My friends are amazing. That’s not really news, per se, but I just felt it needed to be said. They’re my big yellow umbrella.

Wow, I actually don’t really know what else to say. I’ve been so consumed with work, there hasn’t been time for much else, except the occasional glass of Malbec and gyration to Queen. Life is funny like that; sometimes you just live it. Months have flown by, I’ve been living alone (to an extent) and it’s been great. Other than a few minor stresses, I’ve been good. Some would say zen (except for when I get stuck behind slow moving traffic and then the sewer mouth is just unstoppable).

So, come say hi to me! I miss you all. I’m officially the world’s worst blogger but at least I’m excelling at mediocrity, right? You’re welcome, mom. 💕

Tell me what’s been going on in your world while I embroider like the lady of a medieval castle twerk to Kendrick Lamar.

Working Nine to Never

‘ello everyone! (I do a great Cockney accent, right?)

I wish I could say that it’s been forever because I’ve been super busy but that would be a lie. And I don’t like lies. Or raisins. But mostly lies.

Some of you may know that I’m a teacher. The problem is, in Ireland, there is a huge over-supply of teachers, particularly for the subjects I teach. So despite applying for virtually every job I could, attending interviews for miles around and dazzling everyone with my impressive blazer collection, I failed to secure a job. I know right? This bastion of maturity and dependability failed to prove as much at interview…okay, you can stop laughing now. At least I didn’t do this: I don’t wear velour to all my interviews.

So now I’m unemployed…and I have to say:
aeriel
Source

Don’t worry, I’m not going to write a self-pitying post about how bored and disillusioned I am with life. Nope. Not me. I am totally and most definitely not crying into a bott- er, glass of wine right now which I could totally be drinking because I have no job to get up for. See, I told you guys..
giphy
Source

Right now, I’m weighing up my options. I could have pizza, but…OH RIGHT, I was talking about my current (un)employment status. I do have a few options, but I’m kinda in a bit of an inbetween place. You may assume that with all the free time I have, that I would be spending it in the most productive way possible. And you’d be right, I am. Here’s what I did this week:

-I beat my high score in Candy Crush Saga. #winning
-I trimmed my guinea pigs’ nails.
-I invented a drink called wineka. It’s one part wine, one part vodka, and three parts bad decisions.
-I learned to tell the difference between navy and very very very very dark blue.

So, you know, I….OKAY. OKAY, I have been so unproductive that my picture is probably hanging in a North Korean factory to warn workers about what happens when you slack off. I imagine it looks something like this:

You know...if I were a cat.

You know…if I were a cat.

Source

I have learned that I become seriously unmotivated when I’m not working. It’s probably just a confidence thing. This may sound a little arrogant, but I had fully expected that I would have a permanent job by now. I have worked non-stop as a teacher since I qualified and I have built up great experience. I went to university for five years to get as many relevant qualifications as I could. I began my career five years ago and still…nothing. Yes, I remember that I said I wouldn’t start to feel sorry for myself, so I’ll just say this: when you know you’re good enough but no one will give you the opportunity to show it, it sucks. It really, REALLY does. Gah, I’ll shut up now.

I guess what I need to do is just (as us Irish would say) cop onto myself, which basically means buck up, get back on the horse, stop whinging. I know that nothing good can come from wallowing in self pity, except for me getting to type the word ‘wallowing’, which is always fun. I am still applying for work and considering going back to do some further study to sex up my CV a little. If none of that pans out, then there’s always the circus. *awkward, nervous laugh*

Anyway, it’s been a while guys! Come and tell me how all of you are doing, and if any of you need a court jester or professional cat dance trainer, call me. *Kidding….kinda*

Jane 1 Epilepsy 0

I
Feel
Amazing!

Today I went on a hike with my dogs

20140622-232038-84038123.jpg

I took this only about three miles from my house. Beautiful isn’t it?

When I came home, I cleaned the entire house from top to bottom. I even did chores that I despise.

I did grocery shopping and made all our meals from scratch today, with organic produce.

I put a hair mask in and pampered myself with a lovely bubble bath and fancy moisturiser.

I did so much washing (laundry for my American readers) that the washing machine is still going.

I drank peppermint tea and caught up with all my friends back home.

Why, might you ask, am I bragging about my productive day?

Because I had kind of given up. When my seizures came back, I got lazy. I felt frightened to do anything, to live. Today, I lived my life. And I didn’t have one seizure. Not one.

I feel relaxed. Hell, I even feel happy.

I can’t let this get the better of me.
I’m not going to let it. There are people out there with much bigger problems who are coping much better than me. I need to get off my ass and live.

And by the way epilepsy, if you were a person I would totally be sticking my tongue out at you right now. Ner ner!

My blog is weird

You guys see a very different side to me in comparison to what many people in my life see. My closest friends know that I am pretty…erm…odd, but my work colleagues and casual acquaintances see “professional Jane.”

Professional Jane likes pencil skirts and blazers. She eats rye crackers and discusses politics with men in suits. She analyses exam results and collates them in the form of pie charts. She attends meetings with colleagues and has an actual clipboard. Sometimes, she ties her hair up with a pencil. Yes, professional Jane is a straight-laced, no-nonsense nine to fiver.

Then there’s “crazy Jane”. Crazy Jane tries to teach her cat how to curtsy (she *almost* has it). She has an inexplicable fear of foam and waltzes with herself. She likes to not stalk her neighbours with binoculars and pretend she’s a French mime artist. She also loves wrestling and tequila (in that order). Sometimes, she likes to drive slowly beside random joggers she’s never met while playing Eye of the Tiger. She also likes to frequent karaoke bars where she can rap California Love in its entirety.

So yes, I’m weird. But I’m not always weird. I could come on here and be normal but then you guys wouldn’t be (hopefully) laughing at with me.

Design

In case you guys are wondering, crazy Jane mostly lives in a cage while professional Jane is at work. I let her out in the evening, where she likes to dance to Abba and blog. Crazy Jane sure loves to blog. She also loves talking to all her fellow weirdos and sending them virtual cake. She is uncomfortable with referring to herself in the third person so she’s going to stop now and knit some tea cosies even though she doesn’t have a tea pot. Sinister.

How to become instantly happier

I realised some time ago that to instantly feel more content and at ease with myself, I needed to stop comparing myself to other people.

Of course, this seems simple in theory. The truth is, it took a very long time for me to put this into practice. We are surrounded by other people all the time: friends, family, co-workers, schoolmates, roommates, even strangers. These are people whom we often deem more successful, better looking, more intelligent, funnier, more popular, basically just better.

But who says that they really are better? Who actually measures these things? And what is better anyway? I mean, Usain Bolt is a better sprinter than me (allegedly), but I’m not going to cry about it.

The truth is, these insecurities lie within ourselves. We make the comparisons. In some ways, it is perfectly normal. Competition is what drives us to succeed. But what about when we become consumed by feelings of inadequacy? Sometimes these comparisons with other people do more to hinder us than to help us.

20140324-210236.jpg
Source

When I was in school, I constantly compared myself to my classmates. When a test was returned to me, I was more concerned with what grade the people around me received than my own. My friend Laura was brilliant at science. It just seemed effortless to her. I, on the other hand, struggled with it. Whenever Laura got an A, all I could do was question my own ability, or perceived lack thereof. I would plague myself with questions: why can’t I get an A? What’s she doing that I’m not doing?

It took me some time to realise that science just wasn’t my strong suit. I loved it, but I had to work very hard to even maintain a C grade. My strengths in school were English and history. I received a pretty constant stream of A grades in both (self-five), but of course I didn’t focus on that. I focused on how poorly I was performing in science.
In short, I was focusing on what I couldn’t do, rather than what I could. I was also focusing on what Laura’s strengths were, which was just counter-productive. I should have been solely focusing on me.

This sense of inadequacy was evident in other aspects of my life too. I had serious insecurities about how I looked. My hair has always been curly, but that wasn’t fashionable throughout my teenager years. My two best friends had sleek and frizz-free hair and it bothered me that no matter how much I straightened my hair, it was never as smooth as theirs. I know that sounds so shallow, but during that delicate time of my life, it really seemed important.

I constantly compared myself to my female friends. I didn’t feel tall enough, thin enough, blond enough, my eyelashes weren’t curly enough, my collarbone wasn’t as pronounced, my nails weren’t as long, my eyebrows weren’t as arched, my fingers weren’t as lithe…I literally experienced all of these inadequacies and they tortured me. I scoured beauty magazines for tips, which definitely didn’t help the situation. As the lyric in Everyone’s Free (To Wear Sunscreen) goes

Do NOT read beauty magazines, they will only make you feel ugly.

Looking back, it seems ridiculous that I let these thoughts consume me. As I’ve gotten older, I’ve become much more comfortable in my skin. I have my mother’s eyes, my father’s nose (not literally, I should point out), and my grandmother’s curls. I have decided that it is a beautiful thing that a part of them will be with me (and a part of me) always. Why would I want to look like someone else?

I could also talk about how we often have these feelings in the workplace. We all have that workmate that seems more diligent, more efficient, more conscientious. I’ve come to realise that yes, these people are often great workers, but they harbour the same insecurities as everyone else. They have the same capacity for failure (and fear of it) as the rest of us.

20140324-211143.jpg
Source
I’m sure this doesn’t apply to you…

So my lovely readers, my point is that happiness often alludes us throughout our lifetimes and this is often the result of our own feelings of inadequacies. These feelings come from within. Once we stop comparing ourselves to everyone else, we can focus on being the best version of ourselves, not someone else.

Man, I feel like this right now:

20140324-211507.jpg
Source
But really, this is more apt:

20140324-211804.jpg
Source
>

What I did instead of writing this blog post

Today at work I was all like “I’m gonna go home and write the BEST blog post ever. I’m gonna write the crap out of it!” I had copious amounts of coffee, a motivational chest bump with one of my colleagues (bad idea, ouch) and I came home. I sat down to write.

And then I procrastinated, which is never a good thing. Just ask Hamlet.

20140320-194820.jpg
Source

Here are the things I did instead of writing a blog post:

1. I plaited all my hair.

2. I unplaited all my hair and then gazed in awe at all the wavy goodness.

3. I took a no makeup selfie, because they are all the rage right now.

4. I played flappy bird and then shouted obscenities at my phone. Flappy motherf***er.

5. I juggled with cucumbers.

6. I had an imaginary argument with my annoying neighbour where my best comeback was “so does your mom”.

7. I waltzed with my cat.

8. I spit popcorn into my belly button like the classy b**ch I am.

9. I picked up my guitar and remembered that I can’t play.

10. I shouted “there’s no Santa Claus” at the kids who kicked a ball against my car.

And then I did this.

Did you have a productive day?

And then I take my bra off…

20140206-183019.jpg

I have a bit of a routine when I come in from work: give Jack a kiss, pet my animals and take off my bra. Yes, you read that right.

Okay, so that might be a little bit too much information, but you’re still reading this so what does that say about you, hmm? (Iloveyoudontleaveme)

Look, it could be worse. I could be coming home and snorting lines of cocaine from Jack’s thighs (sorry). Perspective, people, perspective.

I work hard(ish). Like most people, by the time I get home, I’m tired. Taking off my bra is strangely liberating. It’s like all the stress of the day is whipped off in a swift movement my inner 1960s feminist hippie would be proud of (she also stands there grinning at me with a lighter and a canister of petrol in her hands, the psycho).

I do this most days of the week because most days of the week, I’m just coming home to Jack (I want you to keep in mind, I still keep my clothes on. Man, this just got awkward).

I urge you to try it. Set those babies free (and this officially just got weird). Look, even Jack Nicholson’s doing it.

20140206-182844.jpg
Picture 1:http://m.quickmeme.com/meme/3qfwia
Picture 2:http://theadventuresoftransman.com/2012/04/09/im-too-sexy/

What I caught my boyfriend doing when I came home from work early today…

On Thursdays, I only have classes in the morning and then in the evening. Usually I stay behind in school and get some corrections done during my free afternoon, but today I decided to come home for lunch to surprise Jack.

As I walked in the door of our home, I couldn’t help but feel something was amiss. The atmosphere in the house was strange, tense even. I called his name but he didn’t respond. Then I heard him talking to someone. He sounded frustrated.

“No, it’s easy! You do this…How have you not got the hand of this yet?” I followed his terse tone to the kitchen….

…where I found him with our cat, Billie. He had attached the dog’s leash to her collar and she looked none too pleased; her eyes seemed to say “mam, help me.”

“Jack, what are you doing?” I asked him, keeping a safe distance.

“I’m teaching the cat how to walk on a leash.”

There was a silence.

“Um, shouldn’t you be working on your PhD?”

As I was talking to him, he was still negotiating with the cat. “Come on Billie, you can do it. There’s a sachet of whiskas in this for you.”

He looked at me. “Sometimes, I just need to take a break from my thesis, or I go kind of mad.”

Erm, ya don’t say Jack.

20140130-163858.jpg
My very photogenic cat

What do you do when you feel crap?

Today, everyone at work had to stay back for three (unpaid) hours after we’d already had quite the hectic day. I’m exhausted, sick (Jack cooked and maintains that the minced beef was probably cooked through) and we’ve no heating in the house so it feels like we’re suffering through a mini ice age. (We have had fun reenacting scenes from the end of Titanic though.)
When I feel sorry for myself like this, I grab my laptop, put on a feel good film (or one of my favourites), climb into bed and try to forget the day’s troubles.
What do you do?