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Dear Friend,

I’m ready for summer to be over. Well perhaps I’m just ready to be out of the house again. I don’t know what it is about living at home, but I always seem to lose my voice here. Everyday has me slipping farther and farther back into my own little pity party, and I had given that up… I was party free! My instincts are telling me to blame everyone around me, but I’m mature enough to know that I play a huge role in my mental well-being. I guess that being home brings along with it all of the responsibility to be a part of this families functioning again, and for some reason it frustrates me that nothing has changed. I love my family more than I can express, but they are just as dysfunctional as I am, and expect me to fit into the role I played throughout high school. I think the problem is, I tend to form myself in to role I believe is expected of me. Now The problem I’m facing is similar to struggles of other people around me, I’m sure I can’t be the only one who returns home after their first year of college to say, “I’m not the same person, stop expecting me to be!!!” but struggling to maintain the lifestyle I had in college because I’ve been shoved into my old life. I guess what I’m asking myself, and …er, you… is “How do I get out of this rut?!?!”

Yeah that about sums up my high school home life. See the difference between that and my college life is huge!!!

You see what I mean!!! The biggest difference is that when I’m at college my parents assume I’m doing fine, that I’m not only being responsible, but that I’ve probably worked ahead and am participating in something college kids do… like dumpster diving, but the second I get home they assume that I’m being a lazy-ass bum who does nothing but sleep in and watch TV all day. What’s up with that?!?

My parents, however can’t get all of the blame (they will most likely receive a lot of it, sorry) you see I don’t function well when I don’t have people time. I am very half and half when it comes to being extroverted or introverted, and I need both to function. When I’m at home on break, I don’t spend enough… make that ANY… time with people outside of my family. I need to get out of the house and DO something! I mean seriously for the past two weeks I have been washing dishes, taking Po (Our new puppy!) out to pee every 2 hours, watching my little brother (trying to keep him entertained while limiting his “screen time”) and working on the computer (and ironically, I really mean working as opposed to facebooking). Before that I was recovering from surgery. And the one week I had after school, but before my surgery I spent washing dishes, making dinner,and finding a job. I’m sorry, but there just isn’t any time for people in there.

So where do I go from here? Well, I guess I start by finishing up my training for Subway, so I can start working for real, and work on improving at driving stick so I can actually drive to work and get out of the house more often. Speaking of which, I’ve been getting much better! I still stall about half the time when I’m trying to start from a stop sign, but it’s so much better then it was just a week ago. Overall, I think I have to be better about talking to my parents when I’m feeling overwhelmed, because lately the problem is that in my attempt to keep them happy, I’ve been washing dishes and taking care of Po, but I haven’t been getting what I need to be happy. So here’s to hoping the rest of the summer only goes uphill from here.

Lots of Love, Mandi Jo