Thursday, August 15, 2013

The Pity Party Stops Here

I've been struggling with a few things lately, some I want to share on this blog and some I don't.  Mainly, feeling like I'm not where I'm supposed to be right now.  This city and this job just don't feel quite right. I wasn't ready to leave New Orleans and Jackson doesn't feel like home yet.  I say "yet" as if I expect to eventually settle in and find my groove here, but I'm worried that won't happen.  People keep saying, "it's only a year" like that is supposed to offer some relief, but truth be told that sounds like a pretty long time to be stuck somewhere you don't want to be.

It's a jarring experience for anyone to move to a new place and start a new job, (especially when it wasn't exactly your idea to begin with, thanks medical training!).  It always takes some adjusting, but I think it's been extra weird for me because I used to live here in college.  Everywhere we go holds some memory from a different life when we were younger, unmarried, and spent most of our free time drinking.  It's not that the memories are bad, quite the opposite actually, but for some reason it's unsettling to me.

It was a little over 5 years ago when we left Jackson to move to New Orleans, but it may as well have been a lifetime ago.  I moved here at 18, fresh out of high school and excited to be away from home.  By the time I graduated college at 22, my relationship with Jeff had become serious and I'd made the decision to go to grad school in New Orleans to stay with him.  I was beyond ready for my Jackson chapter to close and for a new one to begin.  While I loved my college and had plenty of good friends, I was ready to get out of Jackson by my sophomore year.  I just never felt like it was the right fit for me and I was itching to get away from what I felt was a pretty judgmental climate.  I needed to be around the type of people who wear jeans and a t-shirt to football games and not heels and pearls, know what I mean?  If you like to dress up in your Sunday best to watch a bunch of sweaty guys throw a ball around and get pummeled, then by all means, more power to ya!  It just wasn't what I was used to growing up in Southern Louisiana and was indicative of the many differences between the two cultures.

St. Louis Cathedral at night in New Orleans
Where we were married

I found some really awesome friends in New Orleans.  Everyone was so different from one another, yet coexisted in this perfect melting pot.  People seemed to realize that this is what made the city so great.  They live life to enjoy it down there, I mean really enjoy it.  If you aren't having a hell of a time in life, then what's the point?  It's probably the one thing they take seriously.

Not only did I meet and become friends with some really genuine people, but I fell in love with the city itself.  And even after 5 years there, I felt like we were still discovering something new every time we ventured out.  There was always a new corner to explore that you had never known existed.  Unlike when we left Jackson back in 2008, I wasn't ready for my New Orleans chapter to be over.  We like to think of our lives as progressing linearly.  So, I think what gets me down is that it feels a bit like a step backwards to be in Jackson again, even though our careers and our lives together are moving forward.

I realized the other day that I've spent every day since we moved here focusing on all the things that are wrong with my life right now.  I've been incredibly bored at work (I've been sitting around for a freaking week  and a half doing not shit).  I miss my old boss who was extremely nice, accessible, and understood the need to have a life outside of research.  I knew coming into this position that I would not be the same as grad school.  Some things better, some things worse.  I'm just not sure yet if the better things will outweigh the worse things.  Oh, and have I mentioned that I miss New Orleans and Jackson is devoid of all culture?  There's that too.  To top it off, Jeff just started an away rotation in New Orleans- yes, you read that right.  (Go ahead and rub it in, babe.)  Not only has he gone and left me in this hell hole (ok I may be exaggerating, slightly), but he's in the one place I want to be.

So, I decided I need to get my mind off these things that are bringing me down and instead focus on things that are good right now.  Positive energy and all that jazz.  No more pity parties about things I can't change in my life.  So, here we go.

Things that make me HAPPY right now:

  • Ben & Jerry's new Greek froyo!  I'm especially liking the Blueberry Vanilla Graham flavor.  Nommmmm
  • other people who work in my new lab are super nice
  • having a drive through coffee place on my way to work (also dangerous)
  • Our internet/cable bill here is less than half what it was in Nola (the things you get excited about as an adult)
  • Jeff's 2nd New Orleans rotation will be in February aka Mardi Gras season aka this is possibly the luckiest thing to have ever happened to us (now we'll have a free place to stay during Mardi Gras!!!  I'm already planning my vacation time accordingly.)

I realize these are small, silly things, but they are little victories on the path towards not being completely miserable this year.


  1. I think I've felt this way every time I had to move for the next stage of training. It's hard to leave somewhere you loved! Looking at the bright side is a great idea. Making friends always, always is what eventually made it better for me. Now I miss them at each of the locations we had been at...

  2. I felt the same way when I moved to Maryland. I only expected being there a year and then leaving my job to be with Mori, but it ended up stretching into 2.5 years and by then I didn't want to leave. That doesn't sound like the case for you though :).

    At least leaving Jackson is a positive thought for you. Start planning that dream home of yours near NOLA in less than a year! Once the holiday season gets going, it will start going faster. Fingers crossed it gets easier for you!

  3. I am not to fond of Jackson either!! However I am very thankful that you are here now and we get to be friends!! Even if it is for less than a year!

    1. Me too! I should have added to the list new friends like you :)

  4. Feel your pain. My husband dragged me to Dallas where I knew ZERO people for five years of medical school. Then he dragged me to Cincinnati where --had I known what was in store for me when I was in Dallas I would have appreciated that place a hell of a lot more because let me tell you... sounds like Jackson with a Saks Fifth Avenue that is located in the downtown ghetto hence I have never visited the establishment. One year is nothing, really. I mean seriously you can DVR all the Bravo shows and watch Mad Men to get you through to Mardi Gras (we met at MG 2001) and after that you might have a job lined up to look forward to your next chapter. I was visiting my family in TX and now I'm back...this place blows beyond my wildest nightmares. People, culture blah blah I could never run for office for the things I have said about this place. Good luck and take some trips to Nashville or NOLA when you can. I like your blog btw. off to tend to my kids bc Drdaddy is incredibly "un-knowledgable".

  5. I guess I don't really understand why people get married in the first place if they don't want to be "dragged around" by their spouse? There's a reason why people stay they can still have their independence and not live a life of compromises. Best of luck with everything though :)

    1. Thanks for your comment. I follow my husband around the country because I 100% support his dreams and have never viewed it as "living a life of compromises." I promise you, I gain much more from being married to my best friend than I lose! I can only hope that one day you are lucky enough to find the same thing. If you read any more of my blog, you would know that I am now doing a post-doctoral fellowship myself which is furthering my career goals- I would be doing this whether I was single or married, so I'm not sure what your point is. The only difference is that I may have been in a different city, which still wouldn't have been New Orleans.


What do you think?