Live. Love. Run. It's what I do.

My mind is rambly, so I thought I’d use numbered bullet points to help with the confusion.

I got my wisdom teeth taken out yesterday. My face is swollen up like a chipmunk, I’m mood swinging from high on hydrocodone to low in the lows. Right now I’m sitting in the pits, feeling bloated and gross and generally incredibly down for reasons I can’t put a finger on. My mind is feeling rambley and irritable. Lots of things have happened in my life lately: here’s just a quick rundown…

  1. I finished my first semester and first round of finals for pharmacy school this past Wednesday! 12.5% done, already! Not all of our grades are in yet, but I think I’m sitting somewhere around a 3.6 GPA from this semester. It is NOT the 4.0 I’d been hoping and shooting for from the beginning, but all things considered I suppose it’s not too shabby.
  2. My school has a policy where anytime someone is convicted of any crime, they investigate it. So, since my ex had violated the civil protective order I have against him, they naturally reached out to me to do a university-run investigation as well.
  3. They reached out to me about two weeks ago, and with finals in the headlights, I asked them to wait until after I was done. So this past Thursday morning was the day we decided on, and I did a whole heck of a lot better keeping it out of mind until Wednesday night, so I don’t think it really interfered with my testing much at all!
  4. I’d successfully gone about a whole week (last Wednesday to this past Wednesday) without a bad panic attack! SCORE!!! Sure I felt some anxiety last weekend, but no super-bad-totally-dysfunctional anxiety.
  5. But then of course, the panic hit at an incredibly inconvenient time, mid-makeout with a friend-with-potential of mine. So here we are in my bed kissing, and all of a sudden my mind starts racing. I first started thinking about how my nose tends to get congested around 2am lately. Then I thought about how it was around 2am when my ex came over the night that I was assaulted. Then I started thinking about how close it was to 2am (it really was like midnight). Then I started thinking about how it had happened in that same bed. And how disrespected I felt. And the hurt. And the self-doubt that I was making bad decisions again. And by this time I really wasn’t much in the mood for kissing, my heart was racing out of . So I rolled over, and my friend asks how I’m doing, and I just ask if I can tell him really serious things about my life. And he’s like yeah, sure, of course. And so I tell him that really bad things happened to me and that I have really bad anxiety and that I had a protective order against the perpetrator and that he violated the order and that I had to meet with the school people about it in the morning and that I was having a panic attack. And he was like wow I’m so sorry, what do you need, how can I help? And so I just got out of bed and I was sweating so badly and I couldn’t breathe and I felt like I was going to throw up and my heart was racing and my mind was going a million directions and so I went and pulled out my contacts and changed into shorts and a t-shirt so maybe I would stop sweating so badly. And then I was like I just need to go to bed, and he asked if he should leave and I said no, so I curled up beside him but really I was just silently crying, with tears streaming down my face, and he was gentle and rubbed my arm and I got up and went to the bathroom and came back to bed with him and just laid there. For a long time. And then eventually he was like, do you think you’re gonna be able to get to sleep anytime soon? And I was like no. So then we started talking. And he was like, have you ever been to counseling? and I was like yeah. And he was like do you go to UCS (University Counseling Services)? And I was like yeah. And he was like, if you don’t mind me asking, who do you see there? And I told him who it was. And he was like, no way me too. And so it turns out that we’d both been seeing the same person all semester. And we had so much to talk about, about the different things that we’d learned from her, about what a great person she was in general, we just cuddled and talked and it turned into being so hot and so deep and so intimate, opening up to each other about our mental health struggles while lying there cuddling so close. It was exactly what I needed. On so many levels. Thank you Jesus. I am so thankful to have found exactly what I needed when I was in such a bad place. Like what are the chances that of all the people, that we’d had a connection like that. I felt validated, and free to open up, even though I suck so much at sharing my feelings. And of course it feels good to feel like maybe you’re helping someone else too, as he opened up to me about his struggles. It was amazing.
  6. So we sat up until like 4:30am talking and cuddling and kissing and whatnot, and then finally we decided we should call it a night because he had a final on thursday at noon. I felt kinda bad for keeping him up so late but oh-so-thankful for his company and the reassurance it brought me.
  7. And we slept in the next day until like 9:30 when I finally got my ass out of bed, and he waited for me so he could walk with me to my appointment with the idk-her-title academic affairs investigator lady.
  8. I met with the lady, along with an advocate from the local rape victim advocacy place for moral support. And she explained the university’s code of conduct violation policy, and then asked for a statement from me. And I told her everything from the beginning and the traumatic event that happened to me, and how emotionally scarring it was, and how I dealt with the aftermath, and how I got a protective order, and how he violated it once and was charged, and how he violated it again and they didn’t have enough evidence to do anything about it.
  9. And she says that what he did to me could get him suspended or expelled from the university.
  10. And that makes me a bit relieved and a bit nervous because I want him gone and I want him out of my city and I want to know that I’m not going to just run into him out of the blue on the street in passing or at the library when I’m trying to study or at the bars when I want to hang out and destress with my friends. I want him as far away from me as possible. But at the same time, if it gets to that level, he gets to dispute it, which means I have to intentionally be in the same place as him so we can have a hearing and from all the times I’ve had to go to court, those suck ass. So much. Emotionally, mentally, absolutely draining.
  11. And then I went to work after that on Thursday and had no mental breakdowns.
  12. And then I went to dinner with a friend that I love but I can’t tell her everything, idk why, but I feel like she doesn’t get the anxiety that I go through.
  13. And then we had a P1 class party and it was fun but I wasn’t feeling uber-social so instead of being in the dirty crowded basement, I just stayed upstairs dangerously close to a stash of jello shots and talked to two good friends of mine and whoever else happened to pass by us. And then the people would often suggest more jello shots. Which led to some time spent puking in the bathroom of the bar we went to post-party. And then we stayed out almost to bar-close and ended the night finally at Pancheros.
  14. And then my friend who I’d previously lost my 3rd virginity to asked if I wanted to go home with him. Or vice versa. And I made up excuses about going home early in the morning to get my wisdom teeth out and I ended up not going home with him or vice versa and I am very proud of myself.
  15. And then I got my wisdom teeth out on Friday and afterwards, when my mom asked for directions on how to take my meds, I decided it would be a great time to butt in and go on and on and on and tell him how to take them all. And I gave the nurse who brought me out in a wheelchair a huge hug after she helped me to the car. And then I went on and on the whole way home about how I wanted mashed potatoes from a bag. And then I texted my friend about how ice cream was one of my “3 main food groups – along with water, rice, pasta, and chocolate.” and then I slept.
  16. Today I went to the gym and did 5 miles on a stationary bike at a pretty relaxed pace and also confirmed my fears of having gained weight – I’m at 122.8lbs as of this morning. It makes me feel like such a fat piece of shit. I’ve felt like a fat ass piece of shit all day.
  17. I haven’t run since Monday (when I did 2 measly miles) and I’ve been eating like shit and in general, I just feel like shit all around. shit. shit. shit.. more shit. fat. shit. Finals week plus nasty cold weather have gotten the best of me lately. Shit.
  18. I finished my christmas shopping today.
  19. I am going from hydrocodone-high and dancing to fat-ass-shit shittiness and I’m just not feeling it today.
  20. I think I need to go to bed.
  21. Thanks for putting up with these bullet points, I don’t really know why I did them or whether or not they helped put anything in order or if they were of any benefit at all to anyone. But they seemed appropriate when I started using them so here we are. My parents have been fighting as of late tonight, my family’s amount of chaos and yelling at each other and making unnecessary annoying noises for just the sake of noisiness is really starting to get to me and I’ve only been home for just over 24 hours at this point, and I really don’t know how I’m ever going to make it all the way til Jan.3 with them before I get to leave for my fav city of Indianapolis.
  22. Speaking of Indianapolis, my doctor friend hasn’t talked to me in days and it makes me feel sad and unworthy and wondering if he’s just busy or doesn’t want to be friends any more or is regretting how friendly he was being during the week of Thanksgiving, which is the last time we really talked.
  23. It’s stressing me out. Everything is stressing me out.
  24. Goodnight, blogger world. It’s been real.
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You win some, you lose some

Hello blogger world,

It is after 2am. I am laying awake in bed after the 3 cups of varied coffee drinks that I consumed today in a useless attempt to do better on my Foundations of Pharmaceutical Sciences exam this afternoon. They didn’t work, by the way. I do not think that my test performance was improved in the slightest. But let me just give you a quick overview of the three cups that I drank today, they do say a lot about my life.

Cup 1: Dark chocolate mocha, skim milk, whipped cream. Approximately 9am. This is my go-to every Monday morning at about this time, when I stop by the cafe after my first class of the day. Mocha Mondays are pretty great, and oh-so-necessary to get my day going. I drank it at the health sciences library where all of the med, nursing, pharmacy, dentistry, and other similar students tend to go to study. My studying was unfortunately not nearly as productive as I felt that it was. But then again, I did a pretty good job at getting distracted and starting conversions with my fellow classmates to distract them too. Only difference was that they probably got some actual studying done in the past week and weekend, unlike myself who spent a the majority of my weekend sleeping, running, and drinking alcohol – Friday night with some friends from high school, and Saturday night with the running club.

My weekend: My nights were fun. I got a super quality run in on Saturday. I ran out to the local high school track (1.5 miles there), then did 4x800m @ 3:15 on average, with 2 minutes rest; then 6x400m @ 1:31 each, with 1:30 rest; then 8x200m @ 41 seconds each (last one at 38 seconds! gotta finish strong!) with 1 min rest between each, and 1.5 miles back home to cool down. And I ran such even splits, I’m so proud of myself! I wasn’t more than a second faster or slower than those times! And then Sunday it snowed for the first time this year, but I still headed out for an easy 6 miles. There’s part of me that feels like a piece of shit for how unproductive I was this weekend in terms of studying and other such things that real people do. But the other part knows how incredibly anxious and subsequently dysfunctional I was last week and knows that I needed a break. I can feel the anxiety rebuilding just thinking about this past weekend.

Cup 2: Straight black cup of Joe. Approximately 12:13pm. I recently was initiated into Kappa Psi Pharmaceutical Fraternity. My pledge mom was manning the table for Kappa Psi’s fundraiser brunch, and offered me a free cup as they were bringing it to a close. Straight black is how I typically drink my coffee. They said I was only the second person all morning to refuse sugar or creamer. I guess my fellow P1’s, P2’s, and P3’s were all needing a little bit of a cushion from this rough Monday morning.

Cup 3: Tall carmel brulee frappuccino at Starbucks. Approximately 7:17pm. It was half-price frap day, I knew at this point that I shouldn’t or I’d be up right now, but how could I pass it up? It’s pretty much tradition for my friend Kelly and I to partake whenever it happens (like twice a year), we’ve been going since we met freshman year. I went to a Zumba class at the CRWC with some running club friends, and then met up with Kelly after at Starbs. Classic white girl. It felt good to be social. Often social is what keeps me sane. Both by going to Zumba and getting to catch up with a friend that I hadn’t seen in probably two months, although both of us have been so busy that we hardly noticed that it’s been so long since we’ve hung out.

Consequences include: lack of sleep tonight. Loss. The courage to email my pharmacist/boss who I had yet to tell about this terrible anxiety that I’ve been going through, and its subsequent hindrance that it’s put on my performance at work. I didn’t tell him this, but I sometimes wonder if my CVS is a trigger for my anxiety in and of itself, just because of how many things have happened there or remind me of the trauma or perpetrator in some way. Anyways, his so unbelievably encouraging and understanding response literally brought me to tears. I was bawling. Win. Also the fact that I’m currently blogging. Win. I’m hoping that I can shake this feeling that I keep getting where I can feel myself trying to fight with the anxiety. My therapist said I shouldn’t fight it and instead embrace it, but it’s incredibly difficult. She says I need to show myself more love. We’ve been learning about empathy in one of my classes, and it’s made me realize that I like to show myself very little empathy. I like judging myself. I’m good at it. I know it doesn’t help my anxiety but it sometimes makes me a better person. But I know I need to show myself some kindness sometimes, and make a conscious effort to care for myself. So I’ve been trying to tune into what it is that I feel and desire. Besides my anxious desire to physically up and relocate to another city, or another state, I also find myself desiring any kind of artistic expression. Writing is one of my attempts at finding that creative expression. I have been craving music lately as well, and I’m thinking I need to hurry up and get on the Spotify Premium bandwagon. Too bad I’m broke! I’m thinking of exploring the new music building for some practice pianos to maybe let a little more of that out.

Anyways, tonight’s thoughts were a bit of a ramble. Loss. But also incredibly therapeutic. Win. I suppose that’s just what you get when you try to write at this hour. Goodnight, blogger world.

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It’s been a while, friends

Hi blogger world,

It’s been a while since we’ve talked last. A lot has happened in my life. I ran my first TWO marathons, the Des Moines Marathon last year, and the Chicago marathon this year (at which I qualified for Boston 2017!! WHAT?! SO PUMPED!). I started pharmacy school this year. I’d say I’ve grown up quite a bit in the past few years since this blog was originally started as an assignment for an English class my junior year of high school. Now here I am, grad student and all, trying to make my way in this scary world full of so many great and wonderful and terrible things. This blog is going to take a bit of a turn from what it was, because just as I am growing, so are the things that I will write about. Some of the things I am going to say will probably not be as pretty as they once were. My life is not as pretty as it once was. I was sexually assaulted in the second week of this semester, and it turned my life upside down. I am still passionate about life and running and food and fitness and many of the things that I once was, but not every day. Some days, like today, it takes everything inside of me to just roll out of bed, after skipping all of my classes, and drag my sorry ass to work, just to break down in tears in front of all of my coworkers, and then drag my even sorrier ass back home once someone came to fill in for me. I struggle with anxiety more days than not. On days like today, I feel dysfunctional, worthless, and weak. I’m just trying to do my best in this big, scary world, but some days, my mind and my body play tricks on me and make it hard to breathe, hard to be social, hard to do my homework, hard to be a “normal” person, hard to do much of anything at all but stay curled into the fetal position and sleep. Some days I just feel trapped in this unknown anxiety, and the littlest of triggers can set me off. More days than not, I just want to run away from everything, or turn the clock back in time, to start over somewhere or sometime new. But I can’t, so here I am.

More is to come, folks. But for now, I’m headed back to bed.


Julie Yip-Williams

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