Allen Mark

Putting Words to Paper. Or Your Screen.

Finding Anxiety's Name

NBC's This Is Us isn't typically the type of series that I would watch--though I guess ever since my obsession with Gilmore Girls a couple years back, anything is fair game now. But thanks to the ladyfriend's unstoppable praise for the show paired with the hype surrounding Sterling K. Brown, I gave it a shot and never looked back. Sure, it's a show riddled with emotional cliches, but its authentic heart and some great performances help make it all worthwhile. In instance in particular just happened in last week's episode, "Jack Pearson's Son."

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My Favorite Things: 2016

The extent to which 2016 has been such a terrible year is so far that it's almost comical. Well, in some well done instances it actually is comical. But I'm putting that aside (for now; I've been working on a 2016 in review post and it depresses me) and listing everything that I enjoyed for this past year. As much as my optimism has been tested, it's nice reminding myself that good things are still happening, no matter how superficial. Here are my favorite things to come out of 2016, in no particular order:

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Taking Care of Yourself

So I'm writing this on the first Monday of May after a sobering realization of how I treat myself sometimes. I'm sitting here getting over a week-long chest cold that left me mostly stuck at home in bed for the better part of the last part of April. I don't often get sick, and when I do my colds only last for about 2-3 days, so this past week has been so uncomfortable and annoying. Then realizing, with no obvious pinpoint of why I got sick I wondered, "how the hell did I get this sick?"

While trying to get over it, April put it in perspective: it's stress. Sure, the constant change in weather--especially some light rain--could be the main cause, but my recent stress levels deserve credit as a catalyst and the tipping point that finally caused my health to turn: Prince's death. Sure, that sounds ridiculous, but literally the day after Prince died the sore throat arrived and that emotional distress could've compounded the mental weakness I already had, and the clutters of my mind and body finally decided to collapse.

Which brings me to my point: I definitely (and as an extension, everyone else as well) need to take better care for myself, mentally, physically, and emotionally. It's not easy. These past six months of unemployment have taken a toll on me like never before; the searching and writing and rejection and back to square one process is so incredibly tiresome. Constantly worrying about deadlines for projects I am not getting paid for gets me shook from time to time--especially in the Bay Area where you need money for a decent standard of living. The clutter in my head has extended towards my surroundings--basically I'm a hot mess. 

So now that I'm finally getting over this god-forsaken cold, I can hopefully take the time to really get myself right again. The grind of unemployment remains the same, but I'm hoping that usual optimism can help carry me until I find (or it finds me) that occupational marriage. I need to clean up myself and my surroundings--creating an environment where I can properly feel relaxed, at ease, and in order. I gotta set some goals for my body--cutting out an amount of bad food I intake, as well as set a standard of where I want my body and weight to be at in a month/six months/year. I need to make more of an effort to actually do things that I love and are emotionally fulfilling--whether that be spending time with those I love, getting back to creating music, and doing more writing for myself. There's only so much time in a day; I got to spend each waking moment right.

I think it's funny how working has caused my body to break down a bit, but it's also work that will take for me to be happy with where I am at in life. I need reminders in life that nothing is ever easy, but that's probably the best part of it all. This blog post sort of got away from me, but sometimes you gotta just write yourself some encouragement, and I for damn sure could use some of that right now. Don't we all?

babette ate oatmeal.

For the entirety of my life, I've been a dog person. I've never owned a dog--my parents never believed I would be responsible enough to take care of one... and they were right--but films such as Homeward Bound and Air Bud completely solidified my love for those animals. On the other side, I gained an aversion for cats thanks to my childhood cat allergy. And so has been my way of life. I think I love dogs so much that my personality reflects it. I get quickly and overly excited and I am inherently an optimist. Dog life.

Fast-forward to late February 2016...

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2/23 Update

Well, I haven't blogged in a while... not that I haven't tried. I'm currently sitting on a few drafts here to go along with my writer's block and crippling anxiety, but I'm hoping this post can help me get out of this funk. I also currently have Parks and Recreation playing in the background which should be great for my mood (Leslie looks amazing in her Ann-Perkins-of-wedding dresses). But seriously, what's the deal? 

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Cryberry // What Makes You Cry?

Growing up, I was never much of a cryer. Be it because of societal pressures on boys to be masculinely stoic or because I imitated my dad who was only either overjoyed or neutral (granted, these are not mutually exclusive), my emotions were very much tempered. In my best recollection, I can remember two distinct moments of crying from the ages 10-18: coming home from school in 8th grade finding my yearbook vandalized with homophobic slurs, and one incredibly emotional late night in the 10th grade when my mom pulled me out from a deep, dark sadness. Both ultimately formed my character more than I could have ever realized in the long run (but that's for another day).

Fast forward to college...

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