It’s been one of those weekends where it seems like a lot of stuff happened, even though not much really did, but I feel like I have a lot of things to say. I just don’t think I can expand any of those ideas into multiple posts, so I might try and squish a few of them into one.
This weekend was scary similar to last weekend – I worked way too much, and I didn’t get any of my homework finished (I barely had time to be on my computer this weekend. Man my email inbox was scary to look at this morning, I’ll tell you that.) The only differences between last weekend and this weekend was I had plans both Friday and Saturday night after I got off of work, and I got to spend a little bit more time with my roommates, since they were usually in the dorm at least for a little bit after my shift ended, and my Friday night plans were with them.
Last weekend I realized now only how incredibly lame I felt not having anything to do after my work shift, (besides homework,) but I also felt the toll of not having any fun after yet another busy and stressful week. True, both of my Monday classes got out early, so I was able to catch a half hour extra of rest and I got to go to a record store, but that was the most fun I’d had on my own all weekend. And it was a Monday. Something didn’t feel right. I promised myself that I’d do at least one thing fun the upcoming weekend, even though I had an even more demanding work schedule.
Sure enough, I was at work the next day, and I got a message about doing something with my group from Writing & Rhetoric II and some other people on Saturday night. It promised a good time and the opportunity to meet new people, two things that I felt in dire need of, so I RSVP’ed that I’d be there. Check that off the list, block the calendar – Saturday night, Erika had plans. And…Friday night?
Friday night was almost a last-minute decision. I had known about the birthday party for about a week, but I had been saying I wouldn’t be able to go since I had to work late. It wasn’t until Wednesday or Thursday night that I decided I was going to go anyway – because for some reason, I felt the urge to get dressed up, do my make-up, and look “pretty” for almost the first time all year. Okay, okay, I promise, I’m getting to the point now.
I can’t even stress how my ‘style’ is, and how little it emphasizes dressing to impress. I wear athletic shorts and a t-shirt almost every single day. I shower in the morning, only because it’s directly after my run for the day, and I don’t blow-dry or straighten my hair. I hardly do anything to it at all besides brush it and run my fingers through it to give it a little bit of lift, and to help it dry a little quicker. I wash my face, put my acne meds on, and then moisturize. Last, but not least, I put on mascara. That’s it. Just mascara. I couldn’t tell you why, or how I arrived at that decision, but that’s what I do. That’s all I do to visibly look “good.” So yeah, when I get an opportunity to not only have a little bit more prep time, but a real reason to care about what I look, then it’s a little bit more fun to me, I guess. I don’t know. I’m weird.
So anyway, it’s a big deal for me to put on make up and straighten my hair and pick out an outfit. And of course, being a girl, I took a picture of myself and added it to my ‘story’ on snapchat. Almost immediately, my sister sent me a picture of my mom in response asking where I was going. I’m not sure why, but I felt so judged by my mom and my sister, and it felt wrong. Why should I feel so judged putting on make-up, and why should my mom really care about where I’m going? I understand that I live in downtown Chicago, and I take the necessary precautions when I go out at different times – i.e., pepper spray, not listening to music, phone’s put away yet easy for me to get to, and knowing the area the event is at/how I’m going to get there and back before I even walk out the door. But they are my family, so they can just worry all they want.
I was starting to feel judged for ‘going out out’ both on Friday and Saturday nights. What’s the problem with that? I’m in college, I’m living on my own (basically), and I should have the right to make my own poor, sleep-depriving decisions, and I should get to decide if that’s ‘my thing’ or not. Work hard, play hard, right?
Mostly, I think we (college students) fear what our parents are going to think. We’re scared they’re going to find out how we spend our weekends, or that we’re actually super stressed by almost everything. We’re scared they’re going to meddle in our personal lives, and we’re scared that they’re going to find out that we’re not who they think we are. We’re scared that they’re going to shape us into a mold of what they wanted to be, or that we’re not going to please them.
I’m not saying that I feel that way about all of them, but definitely some of those can be true for me, at times. But, being honest here, I do think that my parents did a pretty good job with raising me. I feel like I have a good perspective on the big picture, which is something that astounds me so many people don’t have. I know how to work hard, and whether or not I learned that from my parents, band, drum corps, or what, my parents helped me make those goals and dreams even possible, so I do have to thank them in some way. There’s so much more I could say, but I just can’t think of anything else right now. (That and class is over.)
I’m not writing this just because my dad reads my blog, or because it’s mother’s day this upcoming weekend. I actually went into this with a completely different idea, and it’s turned into something way different. To be honest, that’s how a lot of these posts happen. But I’m getting ahead of myself – save it for another post, Erika.