6/24/2015

Some cliffhangers resolved, others continue...

Sorry to leave several questions hanging and not post for a while... it's been a bit of a bumpy ride.

The place with the woman I mentioned who was open to living with a child ended up going to another candidate.  She was open, but it wasn't her first choice to share a fairly small home with a child and all the necessary equipment.

For the last couple weeks I've been living with the friend I mentioned in the last post; the one I've dated.  I knew it would be challenging navigating the feelings of attraction I still have for him, and sure enough, it has been.  The first week, we ended up making out a couple times (intense! intimate! fun!), which made me feel "mushy" and more attached; not so with him.  At the end of the day, I can be sad and frustrated with him, but it is my job to protect myself.  He does not make it easy.

I leave his place in a week and head to Tahoe to be with family and spread my mother's ashes.  When I come back, I will live in the house-sitting situation... yup, the flea-ridden one, but I guess I can't be picky if I don't want to pay a large sum.  She said she will have cleaners come before I get there (I did mention being concerned about the fleas), so fingers crossed.  A neighbor of hers will be staying in the main house, and I will be in my own studio room with a half bath in the back but sharing the kitchen and full bath, as needed.  She described the neighbor as a bit "innocent" and young for his age, which I'm thinking means a bit slow?  We shall see.  This could lead to some awesome stories later...

I'm engaged in focused searching for a home for August.  I have met two times now with my potential housemate, who is actually having her IVF transfer today, the second time an overnight slumber party visit last Friday.  We ate dinner, watched a movie, and hung out the next day running some errands.  I like her and feel comfortable enough to move forward.  She's a bit more self-contained and less emotionally expressive than me, but that's okay.  We share values, not to mention our ttc journeys.  She actually asked me to give her the first PIO shot!  Crazy, right?  But it was easier than expected.

I'll share more soon, but wanted to give an update.  Some of my life seems in suspension for now, as I just have so much energy and mental space, and not a lot of room to work.  I will come back to it when I can.

6/13/2015

Cliff Hanger

If my life was a show, it would be cliffhanger... I'm about to go meet with a woman who is open to living with an infant/child to see how we get along.  If it were a good match, then I would need to apply with the landlord, have the credit check done, etc.  If for whatever reason, we are not a match, then I may stay with another friend for two weeks OR hit the road and travel for a couple weeks.

The friend I am staying with now has been crystal clear that for her own reasons - which include wanting to get her own dog which relates to her taking a year-long road trip next year which relates to her coping and moving on from the loss of her beloved husband, and just being done with sharing her space in a cramped way with me and the nephew that lives here, which I understand but wish she could tolerate another week or two - she needs me to leave by Monday.

I'm not sure which decision above I prefer or which one is best for me.  There are pros and cons of both.  It would be great to see my family and see friends down on the Central Coast, but I would need to miss work which means losing money.  And because my job is so important to me, I don't want to jeopardize it in anyway.  I'm pretty sure I could find another Counselor to cover for the few summer shifts I would miss, but I would feel flaky.  Staying with the friend would allow me to work, but to be honest the friend is someone I have dated - we are not dating now - and I still have feelings for him.  Things have the potential to get a little bit messy, but don't necessarily have to with the right emotional boundaries.  Sooo, today is a big day, and by the end of it, I will know my fate for the next couple weeks. 

Oh, and please think good thoughts for me to find a place - the one I see today or another one - by July so I don't have to stay (or don't have to stay long) in the flea-ridden, dirty house that is my house sitting alternative for July.  I just saw it last week and was pretty disgusted.  This is a friend who is very "earthy," but I don't know how she lives that way.  I would need to get it cleaned beforehand or right away.  Poor Zoey had to have a flea treatment a few days ago after just spending an hour there. :(  I have looked for other house sitting or subletting alternatives, of course, and inquired about a couple of them, but nothing has worked out yet.  Most subletting options demand the equivalent of full rent, which would prevent me from saving more money for my down payment.

One bit of happy news, as I feel much of this is negative!  I know two fraudulent items have cleared or will be cleared very soon from my credit report, and one was the charged off C@pital 1 credit card, which was one of the worst.  I stayed on the phone with them for over a half hour the other day, but it was worth it!  Yay!

6/07/2015

A Rough Day

After gearing up for my workshop yesterday on "Career Building as an Introvert," using information from the book, "Quiet," unfortunately no one showed up. :( Last time I did a workshop at this bookstore, I got about 9-10 people but the workshop was more general on career exploration and resumes and the bookstore was at it's old location.  Now, it's downtown, bigger and nicer, but I thought that would be a plus not a minus?  And I assumed they had the same mailing list as before, which they said they did when I asked. 

I don't think it was promoted well - I saw the poster on the outside and it was handwritten and not very clear.  There was a typed one inside but for some reason there were no pictures, when all the other promotional speaker posters had nice pictures.  Maybe that's something I'm supposed to do myself, but I don't think so because the guy who made the posters said something about the owner saying not to put a picture on it because she wanted the title bigger or something (?).  Anyway, it was very blase looking compared to the others. 

But one of my main questions is does the word "Introvert" speak to people?  Will you give me feedback on that for yourselves?  In my workshop context, it's taken from the MBTI personality assessment definition of introvert, and that's what the book is referring to, as well.  Introversion and the needs of introverts can be undervalued and sometimes we need to advocate for and take care of ourselves around work.  Also, needing to choose careers that don't completely wipe us out and to network, if we are job searching, in a way that works for us - focusing on finding like-minded people or quality connections versus a fist full of business cards.  So that's a taste of what I was going to talk about and since something like 35-40% of all people are introverts, I know there are plenty of people who could benefit.  But I need to find the language that speaks to their problems and concerns.  Is it exhaustion and overwhelm?  Do I need to say, "people who are more reflective and deep thinking/analytical and need time alone to recharge" or "more low-key, reflective, quiet types" instead of introvert?  I would love to work with this niche, so any thoughts and feedback welcome.

A couple good things did come out of the experience.  One woman came to the bookstore who didn't know about the workshop so had other plans, but she said she definitely was interested.  We had a nice conversation, and she took my card and said she would like to talk about individual career counseling.  I hope she follows up!  Also, just connecting to the space and the staff at the bookstore was good.  I have another workshop coming up on the 27th that will be more general career exploration, "do what you love" kind of focus, so it was good to talk about promoting that and realizing I need to get them some copy about it, as well.  I mentioned needing a way for them to sign up for it online, and it sounds like that might be possible.  This all feels like a big experimentation/learning process!

Yesterday was a rough day, too, because I had a conversation with C, and he basically said he is afraid of another break up and doesn't want to go through that again.  He said he is clear that he's basically not going to be ready for a relationship for a while and needs time on his own - like to go away on a solo vacation and figure some things out.  I asked if it was that he saw things with us that would not work in the long run, and we would end up breaking up and he said sort of - he wasn't a clear yes on that.  Of course, he would be willing to hang out and likes the "cuddling" (why do guys call it this?  It's basically code for fooling around), but I'm not down with that and said as much.  This all came up because as we spend more time together, attachments are naturally starting to happen and it was feeling more "serious."

I think he does have commitment issues based on past stuff, but I think a piece of it is definitely what happened around me getting "triggered" or emotional and wanting to process at times.  He's just not down with that.  I definitely need someone who is down with that.  And who shares there own feelings, too.  Not in a critical or disrespectful way, but with some consciousness and taking responsibility for our own "stuff."  Anyway, I'm sad.  Even though I see the logic in it, I'm sad.  Because I was attracted to him, and we had a lot of playful fun when we were together.  And the dancing, don't get me started on the dancing.  It was so incredibly awesome.  But you can't build a relationship on dancing, right?  So, yeah, no way around it, I'm sad and I'm going to miss him. :(

5/30/2015

Ongoing Trials and Transitions

Just riding along on this freaky transition train, holding on as best I can!  I met with the owner of the co-housing home again a couple days ago to introduce her to Zoey.  Everything went fine on that front.  Then, we talked for a while and she explained why she was kind of ungrounded when talking about it before.  Basically, her partner has a great job and loves living in Canada, and they have a great house up there, but she has reservations and for understandable reasons is still attached to this area.  One of her two sons works in SF and the other, as mentioned, will be attending UC Davis in the fall.  As if that wasn't enough, her mother is also living in an independent living facility in a town not far from the cohousing community (but she's not totally independent and needs some regular help). 

She is under a lot of pressure with this whole medical situation, too, and the timeline of the surgery, etc.  In our last contact, she said she has a doctor's appointment on June 2nd which may give her a better idea of her immediate future in the Bay Area and asked if she could talk to me after that.  I said okay.  For my part, I got clear in talking to friends that I would like to have the opportunity to housesit for two months, regardless if we went forward with the housesharing step after a month or so.  That would at least give some stability and time to connect with the community to see if I might find other opportunities there.  Or alternatively find another place.  So, it's a waiting game until after the 2nd. 

Meanwhile I continue to look and follow up on other places, like the Albany house.  No word on that yet, either.  I connected with a lovely single mom who has a 17-month-old little boy.  But her budget is pretty modest and there are a lot of unknowns with that scenario: how will we get along in terms of lifestyle?  Can we even find a place in that rent range (I can pay 300 or 400 more, which makes sense considering one extra room would eventually be my kid's but still doesn't give us much to work with)?  How will her little boy do with Zoey?  etc.  But I think we will still meet up later this week, as we had a really nice first phone call. 

I'm feeling worried because I am now officially over the one-month mark negotiated with my friend (unless there was a set date to move into a new place sometime in June), so I guess I need to bring that up with her.  Some good news from one of the credit agencies that one item has already been removed from my report.  Yay!  I don't know which one but each one matters in the score.  They have until about June 21st to complete their investigation though.

I also am ready to share that I am pissed off at the guy I was dating.  We did talk Tuesday and Thursday but haven't heard a word from him yesterday or today.  On Thursday I asked him to go to dinner with me (using this Amazon deal I have that I had mentioned to him before), and he immediately started scrambling and saying something to the effect that he didn't know about this weekend or he is busy this weekend or something.  Yuck.  Not the response you would like to hear when putting yourself out there and making a romantic gesture. 

We have had ups and downs the last couple weeks, basically around me wanting more reassurance and communication from him - to know what's going on with him.  He's not very communicative emotionally and definitely lives on the side of the less words needed to communicate something the better.  When we are in person, as mentioned, I have felt a lot of attention from him, chemistry, connection, ease of communication overall.  I know his job is super demanding and time consuming, but I don't think that prevents him from communicating here or there if he were truly interested, does it? 

I think he has doubts and maybe has decided he doesn't want things to go forward based on a conversation we had, after spending some intimate time together, in which he was kind of distant and matter of fact, which triggered me, and I pushed for connection and to have the chance to ask what was on my mind.  It did not go well.

So then it was touch and go, with conversations about compatibility and me wanting to "process" more than he does... then we got together last Monday and, as it always does when we're together, it felt fun and just flowed well, so we decided to keep seeing each other but take a step back and not be as intense physically.  He said he wasn't ready to "dive into" something at this point.  I asked him if he saw that potential with us, though, and he said yes and said a couple other nice things about having a family.  I wish you guys could be a fly on the wall when we are dancing or just hanging out together because to me it shows a lot of chemistry and that we like each other.  But maybe he is scared and that outweighs all that. 

So, yeah, I'm sad and hurt and confused, even though I have guesses as to what's going on.  I know two days isn't theoretically all that long to not hear from him, but I also wrote him an email about a dance class, so those two things are just sort of hanging out there and it doesn't feel good.  Thanks for listening, and I'm open to feedback. 

5/26/2015

A Place with Potential

Knocking on wood, but I may have found a place to move with potential!  It is actually in a co-housing development, which I have explored and desired for the last 12 or more years.  I will be meeting with her again on Thursday to introduce her to Zoey, so please send good thoughts and prayers at 11am pst.  It could be a wonderful situation in which to move forward with adoption: two bedrooms, one bath, small but modern-ish, conscious community members including other families with kids, meals together twice a week, a swimming pool (!) and garden.

The woman unfortunately has to have oral surgery in a few months, so she has been staying at the place here and there when she gets her orthodontic procedures - she has to have surgery again to move her jaw forward for sleep apnea that didn't work the first time because apparently the jaw broke in the wrong place. Ack  Also, her son, who has been living there, will be attending UC Davis in the Fall and is spending the summer in Canada with her spouse.

So, basically the first month would be a "trial" housesitting type situation, leaving my stuff in storage, then, if we decide to go forward, we could share the house, but she would be there maybe a week out of the month.  Finally, after she has surgery in a few months, hopefully my income will have risen, either through jobs I'm applying for or through this business beginning to bring in revenue, and I will be adopting a little one and would rent the house on my own.  As we both said, it could be very synergistic.  But I can tell it's a little overwhelming for her at the moment, thinking of leaving next weekend and turning the house over to someone she just met.  So, I'm trying to take it a step at a time and not get my hopes up quite yet... can't help but be excited about the potential though. :)

5/23/2015

Taking Care of Business

Noticing I am little down today.  The dating situation took another turn, which I am not yet up to going into, plus who knows it might turn again by tomorrow!  So I'll wait on that story.  I will say one thing, which is that I. am. so. tired. of being the one who wants more communication or intimacy.  Comes with being a woman maybe?  I don't know, but I'm not feeling it.

Today needs to be a productive day.  I have Finals to finish grading, then grades to enter.  Also, I want to follow up with the three women who signed up that they were interested in the career transition group.

My meetup went okay.  I did well presenting the content and the attendees seemed to like it and really enjoy connecting with each other, which was part of the goal.  But the numbers were less than I had hoped and everyone seemed to be having money problems.  This is a concern they teach us to "dance" with in my business program, but I've got two left feet in this arena. ha

It's like a chicken-egg thing - you need to invest to get the support and tools you need to successfully transition and make more money, but you need money to invest in the support and tools.  I definitely don't want to come across as pushy or sales-y, but I need to ask the powerful questions that help people who are ready commit to themselves and their success.  People come up with the money when their commitment outweighs their fear, so that's what the dance is about I guess.

I have a workshop June 6th and might also do another hour-long coffee gathering through the meetup.  Hopefully, those strategies and some continued social media promotion will help fill the group.  I will say here - I'm committed to doing the group!  If I have a few participants, I am going forward.

Now the spring semester is over, I have three weeks off.  I am going to use the time to focus on my business and finding a new home.  I have an open house Monday for a two-bedroom place quite near my college that is just barely in my price range.  It's super tiny!  But I don't care, as long as it's fairly modern, which it looks to be, and has two bedrooms as required to adopt.  Wish me luck!

There is also still the possibility of a house in Albany, two stories, sharing with an interesting lady I met through my community activism/localization groups.  Albany is a sweet place to live and has excellent schools, not that I would need to worry about that for a while.  I have other friends who live there, and it's closer to the college, too, by about 50 percent or more. 

The other big news is that I discovered several fraudulent entries on my credit report!  They were all from late 2012 through 2013, which is shortly after I had my purse stolen.  Let my story be a lesson to you to check your credit reports yearly!  I called the three credit bureaus yesterday and disputed the entries.  Now, they have a month to investigate and hopefully remove them.  There were two credit cards, a department store charge card, a cell phone account, and a cable company.  Also, there was one address on the report that did not belong to me.

I knew that my credit score was low but thought that was because of a couple mistakes I made a while back.  Turns out, my score should be significantly higher, which is the good news.  During the investigation period, my credit report will show that these items are disputed, so I plan to be up front with potential landlords and point these out.  I hope they will believe me.  I will have good landlord references and proof of income on the positive side, as well.

5/18/2015

As the Dating World Turns

OMG, dating can be such a soap opera, or is it just me?  So, we went out again last night and, after having SO much fun dancing again, we went out for drinks/dinner and had more good conversation. 

I was able to talk to him about my feelings without blaming him.  I basically said that, though we hadn't been dating long and were still getting to know each other, we also had shared some intimate moments and that, while the current situation of texting during the week seemed to be working for him, it wasn't really working for me.  That I felt some anxiety that not everyone would feel, but it would be really helpful to have a couple phone calls during the week or a longer email to connect with each other. 

He was open and amenable and heard me and also explained how the last couple weeks are not typical in that this campaign he has been working on has huge repercussions for labor rights and that the other candidate is funded with big money from the Koch brothers (if you are familiar with these scoundrels).  Also, I did not know he is actually the President of the rapid transit union.  Lastly, he said he, in fact, texted a couple of times wanting to spontaneously meet up but I had my adoption class - this is typical guy thing of not letting me know what he was thinking, but I was glad to find out! 

Thus, we came to understand each others' perspectives, and I feel confident we will be moving forward into more commitment and time together.  We continue to have very good and growing chemistry, which feels exciting and fun - and a relief to not be talking myself into a less-than-adequate level of attraction.

As a side note, I have my first meetup group Wednesday for women in career transition.  Please send good thoughts!  I am nervous!  I hope to present some helpful information and activities and sign a few women up for my 8-week paid group.