backyard crowing


i need a new life

I think my dad can't bear to think of me as someone with a lower-class job, someone who doesn't need a degree.

It's really fucking stupid. So what if I'm not middle class? So what if I struggle to get by? As long as I'm on my own, far away from my parents, and out of debt, I am a rich woman.

He doesn't even want me to believe I could make it on my own. Yes, I know I'd be poor as hell. But I'd be away from you. It pisses me off that he doesn't think I could support myself. On a 8-9-10 dollar wage, 40-50 hours per week? I could do it. And I'm sure I'd make more as a bartender, or even a waitress at a popular restaurant. and it wouldn't be forever, just until the next life adventure bit me in the ass or i ran out of story ideas or fresh scenes.

He suggested, as did my psychologist, that maybe I should switch majors.

The problem there is that:

a) mom will lose her fucking head (we've spent so much on college already, it's insane, and a switch would mean still more money)

b) I would constantly get the whole, "So, when're you graduating?" question and inevitable followup speech

c) I NEED to get out of this state, away from my parents, and into snow, and fast--and changing majors would slow that down and increase my debt

d) People (mom especially) would just think I was running away from majors whenever they became difficult for me

my psychologist mentioned going to the career services center, but i don't really think that's the answer. maybe it is, i suppose i should at least try. i should do a lot of things. maybe if i could figure out exactly what i wanted to do with my degree, i would have more motivation to get it. but i'm not even sure i want to use it.

the psychologist said something about what i wanted to do in life. i was so tempted to say, "but what if i just want to bartend?"

mom said earlier this summer, "if you quit college and are in the apartment on 26th street, what are you going to do? sell t-shirts on the drag?"

and i said, "actually, that doesn't sound so bad right now."

when i told my sociology class that i was thinking about dropping out, suddenly all eyes were on me. i had spoken the taboo. anyone there would think i'm either crazy, crazy intelligent, or...depressed. or a spoiled brat who has had her college money doled out to her "on a silver platter," as my mom would say.

they probably think i'm the latter two.

but it's interesting that this simple phrase, this confession of wanting to drop out of school, caught their attention. it was as if they were instantly my parents, and shocked, or hearing some juicy slice of gossip. yes, if I quit journalism school at UT after four years of studying, I'd be quite the individual. invidual loser, as my parents would have it.

i talked to my mom over the phone a few days ago and explained how the psychologist that i interviewed for a school project said that after participating in his study, she left grad school and went to go live with her parents. then she became much happier. she just sat there and listened, not commenting. she couldn't stand it if i left college.

sometimes i want to die, and now is a bit like that...i can't seem to do anything right, and sometimes i wonder if i'm not just failing at school because i don't want to be there in the first place.

and well, i don't want to be there in the first place. but if i do anything else, i'll be forever made to feel guilty about who i am. by my parents, my relatives, and society. by potential mates, by employers, by parents of little children who are trying to force college onto them. i'll be the drudge of society. and yet society can't go without bartenders and secretaries and waitresses. they should be thanking us.

and by getting crap jobs like this, at least i will have my creative energy juice for writing what I want to write, not who-killed-who blotter nonsense.

i cried in front of dad again tonight. he apologized and said he didn't mean to make me cry. but it's really not his fault. anymore i am a human waterfall. he said he cries a lot, too, which is difficult to believe. i guess he must hide it.

- wednesday, august 6, 2008


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