Something(s) About Me

Continuing on with the spirit of community you girls so graciously gave me over the past two weeks with your incredible guest posts, today I’m participating in a virtual cocktail party of sorts, assembled by the lovely Theresa of InspirationCooperative. The theme is piggybacking off of the blogging-sensation “Things I’m Afraid to Tell You.” We sort of interpreted the theme a bit differently and applied it in the most universal sense so as to include everyone, and came up with Something(s) About Me.

For me the decision for to post some hidden facts about myself on the same day as a bunch of other incredible ladies, stems from my dislike of a lot of blogs that are fake and glossy and only show the most tightly edited and stylized versions of their lives. Oh, you went grocery shopping in 5 inch stilettos? I totally believe you. And you’ve never had a bad day, too, right? Show me something real. My favorite blogs are ones written in an honest voice, about people’s real days, even if they aren’t perfect. No one is perfect. Just be real.

Herewith, 10 real things about me.

This is me, unedited, in my cube at work right now, wearing a men’s chambray shirt. Yeah, I’m having a bad hair day. It’s the humidity!

1. I know I’ve gone into this before ad nauseum, but I am terrified of spiders and elevators. In fact, I am convinced on a daily basis that I am going to die in an elevator full of spiders. I step into an elevator and my brain immediately starts shouting, “YOU ARE NEVER GETTING OUT.” I see a spider and it triples in size and its eyes become lazer beams that freeze me in crosshairs. People try to tell me spiders exist to kill other bugs. False. Spiders exist to kill me in my sleep.

2. I might have graduated Magna Cum Laude with a degree in Photojournalism (or, technically, Journalism with a concentration in Photography for the Mass Media) but I hate almost every picture I’ve ever taken. I am genuinely surprised when I take a photograph and it is decent. I mostly expect to be disappointed with my work. I don’t think I’m any good at photography. I didn’t touch a camera for a year or two after graduation because I was so burnt out on feeling inadequate. I would rather have not taken a single photo at all than take one and not think it was good.

3. I’ve been seeing a therapist for close to 4 years. Before typing that sentence, only 4 or 5 people in my life knew that about me. I started at the lowest point in my life, two years after my dad passed away. To say I was miserable would have been an understatement. I had become an unhappy, hateful, ugly person who lashed out at the people closest to me in what I now am able to recognize was an effort to push everyone away so that I’d never have to feel as hurt and sad as I did when I lost my dad. I started going once a week and now only go once every 6 weeks or whenever I feel like I need a bit of maintenance. I don’t know why I’m embarrassed to admit I see a therapist; I’m pretty sure it’s to her credit I am where I am today. I’m happy. And I wasn’t always able to say that.

4. I can pick things up with my toes. They’re long. It’s weird. In fact, my second toe is not only longer than my big toe, it’s longer than my cousin Stacy’s pinky finger. Don’t ask how we figured that one out.

5. I have no idea what I want to be when I grow up. I never have. Writing has always come naturally to me and I’ve always known I wanted to incorporate it into my life, but I gave up on trying to be a “writer” in the career-sense of the word a long time ago. I never had any grand aspirations when I was a kid about what I wanted to be (unless you count wanting to be an astronaut or a ballerina). I think I’d be happiest being a stay at home mom and part-time writer/part-time decorator.

6. I used to be a pescetarian for about 18 months. I ate a lot of sushi. And then the night before Thanksgiving a few years ago, at dinner with friends, I decided to order lasagna bolognese. I don’t eat a ton of red meat still, though.

7. I’m pretty sure I have undiagnosed generalized anxiety disorder. I worry about everything, all the time. If I’m in a subway car alone I’m worried I’m going to be sexually assaulted. If I’m walking somewhere unfamiliar I’ll take the memory card out of my camera so in case someone mugs me I’ll still have the pictures. I’ve missed buses and trains because I have to go back to the house 3 times to make sure I’ve unplugged my hair dryer or otherwise my house is going to burn down and my dog will die. I constantly stress about how much money I’m saving to the point of having a dedicated notebook to detailing every dollar I spend and save. FYI, my dad had anxiety to the point of having night terrors, so I’m pretty sure this is genetic.

8. I cannot tolerate caffeine. If I have a single soda I am guaranteed to be wide awake at 4am. I don’t drink coffee. I’m pretty hyper to start with, I don’t think people need to suffer the effects of adding caffeine to my system.

9. I rarely have an appetite. I can forget to eat for an entire day unless someone reminds me (however, I will always have an appetite for macarons). This is why last night, when left to my own devices and despite having tons of leftovers in the fridge, I ate popcorn for dinner. Boyfriend clearly does all of the cooking in this relationship.

10. I hate my thighs.

Well that was liberating. I’ve loved reading what everyone else has decided to share today, too. A big thank you is in order to Theresa for taking this little project by the horns and making it a reality. Thanks, T!

Have a great weekend, kiddos. It’s a long one for us here, and I am planning on catching up on as much sleep as possible, but still going out for a a bbq or two. Even though we’re off on Monday, I’ll be posting pictures from Paris that day! That is, if I ever tackle the editing process.

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May 25, 2012 / life / dog / LEAVE A COMMENT / 21

21 comments

  • Well, we seem to be on the same therapy schedule, so that’s good, I guess. :) I don’t fear elevators and not really spiders either (although I don’t want to get cozy with them!), but I can completely relate to the phobia thing (as you now know!) I’m so moved reading all of your ten things, but especially the therapy story….a young woman would have a lot to work through after the death of her dad. Good for you for doing that hard work.

    Love you ducks, everything about you. xo

  • You should post more photos of yourself. You are very pretty! Are you recovered from your trip? Is it hard being back in “real life?” Have a great weekend! Teri

  • Well, confirmed. You are AWESOME. Neurotic phobist who is unsure of safety constantly and worried about minutae? Hi five! It’s good to know there’s other “similar-to-me’s” around, though for the record, with infinitely better thighs I’m sure.

    I was contemplating doing the “Things” challenge, but do people really want to know that the smell of people’s unwashed scalps on the Tube makes me retch? The only place being tall is a disadvantage for me- the bloody Tube. Everyone’s skeggy heads all up in my nozzle and shit. FUH.

    Scalp smell. Come on people.

  • great post. It’s hard to share this kind of reality but I think it’s nice to see other people are going through similar things, have similar insecurities. I’m glad Theresa gave us the push to share :)

  • Ugh! spiders are the worst I can’t bear them either and you want to know the best part? I married a man who thinks they’re fantastic. :O
    He doesn’t have a pet tarantula or anything but we are not allowed to kill them – not that I have the nerve.

    Are you kidding me?! Your pictures are AMAZING!!

    OMG! Your second toe and mine should totally hang out!! I hate that mine has so much power – it gets to decide what shoes I buy/wear. Not fair. :(

    I’m so sorry that you lost your Dad the way you did and that you suffered so terribly. You were smart and humble enough to seek help and that says a lot about you. I think your Dad would be so proud of the young lady you’ve become.

    I think you’re pretty darn spectacular – warts and all! :D
    Have a great weekend! xoxo

  • Oh, Erin, you never cease to amaze me. I heart you even more after reading this, if that’s even possible. Most twenty somethings would just say “f” it and destroy themselves. I love your self awareness and willingness to work on yourself. I havenever lost anyone close to me, but I also did therapy and
    meds in my twenties. It was really life changing and saving.I’m off everything now, but I’m still a work in progress and I guess I always will be.

    You are an amazing photographer, among other things! Stop that nonsense right now!

    PS~let’s never grow up that way we don’t have to worry about what we want to do. Have a wonderful weekend, E! ((hugs))

  • I absolutely adore you and your toes!

  • You are beautiful, a gifted writer, an amazing photographer, articulate, bright, sensitive, affectionate, loving, and politically correct. You have the cutest giggle, an amazing sense of style, a love of literature and music, and a heart big enough to adopt and love the Crackhead. You make me proud to say…that’s my daughter! Everyone who knows you would agree.

  • Love you and don’t even know you. Thanks for sharing. :)

  • I’m terrified of elevators too! I think it was because I’ve gotten stuck a time or two and have also heard terrible elevator stories. I will take the stairs as much as possible just to avoid elevators. I once did 20 flights in a hotel in Miami just to avoid the elevator. And I’m a worrier I’ve always been a worrier ever since I can remember it holds me back from doing things a lot of the times and I hate that. And when unexpected things continue to happen with the people in my life (like death) it just adds to it. It never gets better for me.

    I’m so amazed and the things other people deal with. You just never know do you?

  • Sometimes I worry that I worry too much. I so relate to the constant feeling of anxiety – that the worst case scenario of every situation is right around the corner. In my mind, if I prepare myself for the worst situation I will either be pleasantly surprised f things go well or be prepared for the worst. Mind you, A lot of this did start after my dad passed away 5 years ago. I have been working really hard to be more zen and deal with things as they come. The most important thing for me has been to constantly remind myself to stop and appreciate what I have. This has been my mantra: “everything happens for a reason, all I can do is put out good in the universe and hope for the best”

    You wrote a great post and I’m so glad I discovered you through the “some things about me” mini-movenet :)
    Kate
    http://www.theforgetfulwife.com

  • Erin – you have such a talent for writing and I think you should rethink pursuing it as at least part of your career. Seriously, I laugh and nod my head almost everytime I visit your blog. First question – where can I find that chambray shirt you are wearing? Second – Isn’t therapy great? I too started going soon after my dad died and I really felt like it helped me, in many unexpected ways. I fell off after Everly was born, but I still miss it. I can totally relate on the anxiety front as well – I will sometimes go as far as to plan out an escape route when I’m standing in line at the bank with someone who looks a tad bit suspicious. Maybe I’m not as crazy as I thought. Thanks for sharing a little bit of you with all of us! Have a great weekend catching up on your sleep and I can’t wait to see your Paris photos! xxo

  • ooh, we could be twins {sort of, not, but kind of}… i studied photojournalism too, and tried giving up meat, am not fond of spiders and have a wee elevator phobia {i always make sure i know where the panic button is!}… oh, and knowing what you want to be when you grow up is sooooooo over-rated! hah! nice getting to know some more about you!

  • You never cease to amaze me and make me laugh (in a nice way).

    This post is fabulous, as ever.

    Have a great memorial weekend, relax and just be hon x

  • Hi Erin…I agree with everyone when they say you’re so so talented. I am very glad to have come across your blog (thanks, Therese) and I am sure I’ll be visiting often. Enjoy your weekend.

  • this was amazing. numbers 7, 8 and 10 rang true for me as well. i am a lot like you describe, regarding your anxiety. possibly your therapist can help. mine is definately helping me.
    your honest words are going to help other people. you are quite awesome xx

  • Erin, love the picture of you. I’m glad you’re back and safe and sound – can’t wait to see your pics!

  • So sorry I’m late to the party. I read everyone’s posts on Friday but just haven’t had a chance to comment until today.

    Ah bless you Erin, that’s so brave of you to admit that about therapy. Losing your dad clearly had an enormous effect on you and no wonder it made you feel unhappy. I don’t recognise ay of that in ther person I feel l know in you a little.

    And I really can’t believe you think your photos suck, your 365 is a stunning collection of photographs, I’d be happy if mine were half as good.

    I didn’t know what I wanted to do until I was 32 so plenty of time for you yet. But yes, I really hope writing is in your future as you’re so very good at it.

    Um, wish I had no appetite and forgot to eat sometimes. And if I looked like that on a random photo at work I’d be posting more photos of myself than L’Emily. You are stunning!

    Love you sweetie xxxxx

  • Thanks for sharing Erin! There is no shame in getting help when you need it. My parents dragged me to therapy when I was about 11 or 12 years old. I didn’t tell any of my friends at the time because I didn’t want to seem like a freak but it helped me so much…I could never forget to eat I have to snack constantly, I’m always hungry ;)

  • Erin, I just stumbled upon your blog and absolutely love it. I completely relate with wanting to be a stay at home mom and part-time decorator. I think that would be just perfect. I’m not a mom yet (well, just to my cat, which completely counts), but I think stay at home mom’s need to make a comeback! Corporate America is overrated, at least for me, but very thankful my husband thrives in such a setting.

    Here’s to enjoying life to the fullest! Have a lovely day!

  • Aspiring to be pescetarian for animal welfare reasons. :)