Quarantine, cashier life & pinatas

Hi! I am the worst at having a blog.

My life has changed drastically just like literally all of ours.  I usually work three jobs, my main job is a full-time nanny and then I have my cleaning business and I work as an assistant wedding planner.  Of course, all three of these jobs stopped existing in the face of this pandemic and for a very terrifying week, I was unemployed.  Then I sat down at my kitchen table with a coffee or cocktail (it was my one week of unemployment to be fair) and applied to every single job that I thought might take a college drop out like me.  I also dmed a few grocery stores because I thought they might be hiring asap and that was how I got the job of a cashier and the most expensive grocery store in the west village.  This is a place that charges $8 for a brick of cafe bustelo and there’s a tomato sauce that costs $12.99 (shout out to Rao’s for apparently being THAT good).  Of course, the pay minimum wage but I don’t have the type of savings that would allow for me to be unemployed for more than a week so I took the job.

My nannying job pays $25 an hour so the price drop has been a lot for me to deal with.  It’s also been hard not knowing when/if my job will return.  My nanny family moved from the west village to their beach house in New Jersey.  At the beginning of the virus, they wanted me to travel there and stay for three days of the week and then go home.  I did this for two weeks and then I had to stop because it felt very dangerous for an asthmatic like me to be traveling on the subway and the train all the time during a very deadly virus.  The day I traveled home from NJ for the last time a stay in place order was issued and I couldn’t have been happier to be in home sweet Brooklyn and not NJ.

The grocery store job is as soul-sucking as you’d imagine.  No one grows up saying they want to be a cashier and even if they did they’d take one look at the paycheck and change their mind.  Most of my co-workers are nice.  Some of them are snappy or up tight but it’s cause they’re miserable and I don’t blame them.  When I’m at that job I’m miserable too. It’s hard to go through eight hours having the same stunted interactions with people.  I ask the same questions to every person.  “Hello, how are you? Do you have a store card? Do you want bags? Would you like to donate a bundle or milk to COVID relief?”  The store I work for is doing a fundraiser for City Harvest which is well-intentioned but it’s so horrible to have to ask people for money during this time.  They’ll say no and then pull out their ebt card and you feel like such a dick for asking them for money to feed other people when they’re struggling too.  I always wish the store it’s self would donate money and leave their customers out of it.

Today was a good day though because I am trying to enjoy my life and make the very best of it all.  At work in my shitty work uniform and same pair of black sneakers, I try to bring myself to the register as well by doing my makeup like I would and never coming to work in my uniform.  I keep my polyester work shirt in my store locker and change into it at the last second so that I can feel like myself for as long as possible.  Today was also a good day because I got out at 12:45 pm and when I walked out of the sliding doors the sun was shining and the birds were screaming their little snow-white heads off.  I went home and fixed myself a drink (my new favorite: sunny d + lime juice + tequila + tajin) and got a facetime from an unknown number hung up on them.  I then immediately realized it was a facetime interview I had scheduled for that time.  I called her back and tried my best to show that I’m a very qualified hardworking nanny that’s good at what she does.

The highlight of my day was making a pinata.  My family and I used to do this many times a year.  We’d make them for my sisters and i’s birthday parties.  I was out of practice but doing it brought back so many warm memories of happier and more than anything brighter easier times.  The smell of the flour and water and feeling of the paste drying on my fingers was therapeutic.  The biggest part of me wishes I had the money and privilege to be fully quarantined and staying home during this time.  I would love to have the time to do all the wild and rather mundane fantasies I’ve had during my life of what I would do if I had time to figure out what I wanted to do.  While sliding the wet pieces of newspaper on to the balloon, I was so focused on getting the job done that I wasn’t thinking about how I was going to make rent, about savings, about food and all the ways I am falling short.  I was just focusing on this task that I had chosen to set in front of me not a bouquet of problems that was thrust into my face.  It was nice to reach out to my childhood in this simple and fun way and to even if just for a half-hour, to think about something different.

Now I have to wait a few days until this first layer of paper mache fully dries and then I’ll add a second layer.  Then I’ll stop being cheap and pull the trigger and buy some paint.  And then the hardest part for me comes.  Trying to be artistic and painting something on it.

Question:  Are you the type of person with enough patience for puzzles?

I for sure, am not.

Also, have you done any arts and crafts during the pandemic?  I would love to hear what you’ve been making 🙂

hello internet void

Hello internet,

I have not given up on this blog.  I just have been busy and prioritizing other things.  Good things are happening! Bad things are happening!  The internship that I had turned into a part time job, I’m trying to stay hydrated!  I’ve been procrastinating cleaning my room for weeks!  I’m still a nanny!  I have a week of this coming week for the first time in years!  I’m going on a vacation and it’s the first vacation that I’ve ever taken!  I’m so excited!  I’m so stressed financially!  I have been declined from 80 literary magazines on submittable!  I left my poetry journal in the children’s room of a library!  My rent doubled in price!  I got a really beautiful coat!  I am watching la casa de papel and it’s one of the best shows I’ve ever seen in my life!

This is some of the things that are new!  I’m really gonna try to make this a real functioning blog!

That’s all.

If anyones reading this thats cool.

xoxo,

Tessa

at this point maybe…. rough year?

I feel like I’ve written so many posts intitled hellmonth, rough week and more depressing stuff that it’s almost to the point of it being a rough year.  On the first day of 2018 I was with one of my best friends, one of my ex-best friends who is cousins with one of my best friends and my boyfriend.  My friend Nina is going to become a doctor without borders, my childhood friend is a musician as is my boyfriend and I am a writer.  We are all very ambitious people so naturally, we were all full of hope and the phrase “this is going to be our year.” I don’t know if this will be my year.  One the first day of the year it was grey and gloomy but we weren’t, we were young and vibrant.  We had so many things going for us and a whole year to put those things to work.  We went to the Whitney Museum and had salads for dinner.

It’s been another hard week.  My grandma is in the hospital and because of work I have not had a spare second to get up to Syracuse and see her.  And my uncle is one floor below her in the same hospital, admitted in the same week.  This is how these things go in my life, when it rains it pours.  I am going to missing a lot of my family’s birthdays for the first time ever.  I’m also the worst at stress management and have found myself smack in the middle of the #5 most stressful job in America (wedding planner) and wedding season seems never to end.  Every day off I think I have turns into a working from home day.  And I got a new job as a nanny (for four children) which I am so so very excited about (and so nervous for) but the transition to something new is proving really hard.  But God willing this job is more fulfilling and more meaningful and I am truly so excited for it.

What I’ve learned this year is that family is the most important thing.  It’s really a motto and a way I live my life now.  The older you get I think the more you look around and take note of whose there and whose not.  And family is always there and the friends that have always been there are now family.  I know who I love and I’ve already met the love of my life and I couldn’t be more certain about that.  I’m lucky to be so young and have certainty about things like that.  I’m only 20 and I already feel like I know who is going to be going through life with me.  That is such a blessing.  I hope I’m right.  A revelation like that would probably provide inner peace if I had time to reflect on things like that.  Lol.

More than anything I’m a writer and this year had been especially hard as a writer.  I’ve been inspired not often and often in inconvenient times.  I worry that I won’t ever be published again and I worry about never getting my perpetually 53 page book to 100.  I worry that I’m the only one that this is poetry too and I’m the only one who understands what it means.

I think it’s hard to be exhausted and ambitious and working for everyone but your self.  I think it’s hard to do those things that make you, You and make sure you remember who you are and who you love and to nurture both your relationships and your relationship with your self and your passions.  Maybe the hardest part of life is balancing it all.  Balancing what makes you have your will to live and what you actually have to do to live.  It’s hard. We’re all figuring it out in a very trial and error way.

ahhh soul sucking job

Life’s rough when you truly detest and cringe every time your coworker who sits next to you tries to talk to you. He always tries to give me unsolicited advice and he is the person who got mad at someone for yawning (cause it’s unprofessional). He’s told me to go back to college, that I should try to sit with more diverse people (I have an assigned seat other wise I wouldn’t be sitting next to him smh), and continues to make me take out my earphones to say some dumb shit (just now he wanted to tell me how long my charger is) I KNOW DEJA ME EN PAZ. At my office job where I have to do the same thing over and over for 9 hours I just want to be left alone honestly. Peace and quiet is the ONLY perk of the job. I know I should be more zen and not detest people but it’s Hard. I’m still a petty person whose a little more grown than I wanted to be at 20.

more than just a working girl… or not

I got home today around 10pm after working not one but two jobs (one boring office job and then some manual labor).  I feel very grateful to be employed but it gets to a point where especially on nights like this when I get home and Nick is sleeping, I feel like I’m missing out on so much of the good stuff in life.  I’ve been working at least 50 house weekly and its crazy to realize that’s more than two days of the 7 day week in which I’m not operating on free will.  These are hours in which my time does not belong to me, it belongs to my employer and I don’t do what I want to do. I do what has to be done next and I play games with time, hoping that if I don’t look at the clock time will speed up.  I felt so much guilt when I walked into our house to find the lights off and Nick sleeping.  I felt shitty cause I hadn’t seen him all day and he’d wanted to do something but my cleaning job ran long (it was the largest apt I’d ever been in in NYC).  I also felt robbed because the only thing I was looking forward to today, spending time with Nick was gone.  I so badly wanted to wake him up and as I write this still do (it’s midnight) but that would be no bueno since he really needs his rest (also he looks like a peaceful greek god when he sleeps).  I still wanna wake him up though lol.

Tomorrow I leave straight from work to go upstate to work a wedding and I’ll be gone two nights which seems like a lot to me right now.  I love working weddings and I love cleaning but unfortunately, my wedding gigs are only paid internships at this point and my cleaning job is my side hoe of a job.  I love weddings cause you create something beautiful by working together with strangers and I love my cleaning gig cause it’s totally mine and I created it from nothing (even though at this point it’s barely more than nothing).  My maybe attainable dream is to be able to quit the soul-sucking job that is my 8-5 in which I sit in a very uncomfortable desk chair and file bankruptcy claims for 8 hours straight, looking at not one but two computers at all times.  Also my seat has just been moved from sitting next to a nice guy who hated this place too to sitting next to a man who literally started a fight cause another guy at our desk was yawning and he thought it was unprofessional (!).  I mean,… can you believe?! A supervisor had to be called and the yawning guy changed seats so now I’m sitting one empty chair from a crazy man who thinks yawning is unprofessional and now wants me to sit next to him (not in this lifetime).

The worst thing to do to your self when you hate your job yet are there all the time is to think about all the things you could be doing.  So course, this is the special brand of torture I inflict on myself.  I think about 1) all the dates I’m planning with Nick but may never get to go to cause I’m at the soul-sucking job 2) the poetry book I’ve been working on since middle school 3) panic out of nowhere that I’ve forgotten someone’s birthday 3) how dirty my room is and that when I get home I’m gonna be too tired (i.e lazy) to clean it and on and on it goes.  I have all these passions and projects that stay half started and not fully committed to for the longest time.  My heart lies in things I don’t have the time to give my full efforts to.

It really hurts that the love of my life and I fight about how much I work when I feel like I’m doing the bare minimum to feed myself and buy a metro card and not be homeless and then when I look at my bank account, it looks back at me wide-eyed as if to say “you think this amount is gonna stretch how far, keep dreaming sweetie.”  It’s crazy that I work so much it causes strain on relationships with my family and boyfriend and yet I don’t have savings and I am by all accounts broke.  It’s seems wrong to me that you can work 9 hours a day, 6 days a week and weekends and still be steadily scraping by.

On my lunch break I mindlessly scroll through Instagram.  Mine is full of travel bloggers and girls with brand collabs and money from something or other.  They’re more or less my age and they’re making money off a photo of them holding a protein shake.  I find it upsetting because it looks so easy what they’re doing and not time-consuming enough that they’re seemingly always on vacation.  I am stuck in a cycle of comparing myself to them, thinking toxic half thoughts like, “hmm, if I was blonde and with a booty would enough people like my thirst traps to get brands to want me to selfie up with their product and try to con my followers into using something that I got paid $100’s to pretend I use?”  I am constantly thinking of a way to get out of my cycle, working all the time to have enough and yet not having enough of the most precious thing; time with loved ones.  I am constantly working and then when I am not working I am straining to create a life outside of work that is a happy and healthy place.  I  wanna be someone who makes breakfast and puts a little aside for savings every month.  I want to be not struggling to juggle everything all the time.

1st out of country work trip

LOL I love that I can say that, it makes me feel successful even though I’m not! Yay!

But I get to go to beautiful places for my side hustle and I really love and admire my boss which is awesome.  And I really love the work.

I think that’s more than I can say for any other job I’ve ever had by far.

Tomorrow morning I board a direct flight to Antigua. It’s my first time to a Carribean island (meaning my first time seeing clear blue water !! I’m so excited!) and my first time flying business class (so bougie!).

We have a wedding there this November so this 2 day trip is the site visit so we can get a sense of what it’s going to be like and meet the other vendors and such (I actually have never done an out of country site visit so idk lol).  My one wish is that at some point I get to go in the water, and my other wish is that

Also Nick and I went to Coney Island yesterday so I’m a real gorgeous shade of lobster and I’m hoping I don’t look totally ridiculous tomorrow when I meet the client.  I’ve been layering aloe and masks and everything in hope that it gets fixed before tomorrow.  I was also attacked by mosquitos in my sleep and of course, they were incredibly rude and went straight for the face (this is something that I have come to expect).  It was an amazing day and probably the closest thing I’ll get to a vacation this year but I don’t even care cause 1) it was an amazing day and 2) we’re going to Indonesia in 7 months!! ]

But please wish my professional luck cause I really don’t wanna be awkward or clueless or stupid nervous.  I wanna look like the working professional I hope to one day be.