Monday, June 13, 2011

"A" Is for Anxiety

Today, boys and girls, a lesson in the alphabet. Today we're going to learn about things that start with "A." "A" is for anxiety, and "A" is also for apartment.

Remember when I talked about the big move, aka my boyfriend moving in with me at the end of the summer. To think, I thought talking to my parents was the difficult part. That was before I developed this ulcer searching for apartments (ok, I exaggerate..but still). 

I think someone who has read even one of my entries can figure out that I sometimes, maybe, once in awhile need to be in control. I don't leave things until the last minute, and one more thing crossed off my list is one more thing I don't have to worry about anymore. So imagine my delight when I realized that with my boyfriend gone until August, apartment hunting would be solely in my hands. Not that I wouldn't trust him to nit pick and ask questions about every specific and miniscule detail, but well.. I wouldn't. Kidding aside, while it would have been nice to have his opinion I was going to try to make the best out of it. I was ready to go so Supermarket Sweeps on this apartment search. More people living together means more money, more space, more opportunities. Looks like I didn't factor 'mo money 'mo problems into that equation.

I must preface all this talk by saying that my boyfriend and I broke the golden rule; we looked too soon. Me being the smart, overly prepared, saavy shopper that I am decided that maybe we should take a look at some places when he was here in April so that we could figure out exactly what it was we liked. What worked, what didn't, so that I wouldn't be totally blind going into this thing by myself. And what happened? We found the perfect place. Brownstone, under budget, two bedrooms, two bathrooms, beautiful neighborhood, wood floors. I could go on but I fear I may tear up. The major problem was this unit was ready to be rented four months before we were ready to move (imagine). So I tried to accept it as a good thing, a template for what we were looking for. If only it were that easy.

Since that beautiful April day, when the apartment gods opened their glorious skies, I have seen upwards of 10 apartments. Different neighborhoods, different sizes, one bedroom, two bedroom, Craigslist, realtors, called numbers on the sides of buildings, you name it. And what do I have to show for it? Nada. Ms. Prepared, Ms. Overly Ambitious has nothing to show for her hours spent hitting the pavement. Dimly lit apartments, apartments with appliances from the 1960s, apartments that reak of cat urine, apartments with kitchens smaller than my own (which I thought was impossible) have all turned me into Ms. Anxiety. I have a full blown case of apartment anxiety. 

The worst thing about this long search process is that I've lost my pizazz. I now find it a hassle to go look at a place, its not as fun. When I see something I like I immediately develop a complex that it will be gone by the first chance I get to call (for good reason, its happened three times so far). Also, every glimmer of hope turns into my new dream apartment. Basically, I get played.

First there was the spacious, trendy, two bedroom, too-good-to-be-true-below budget dream...
..snatched right from under my feet when I called on a Friday and was due to visit on a Monday. RIP dear trendy-Meghan dream house.

Then there was the cute, quaint, lets-pretend-we're-really-adults dream house. Tucked in a historic cobblestone street which had so much outdoor space I thought I might seize... 
...which was too good to be true. It was a three story row home that had about enough room for a bed, a breadbox and a roll of toilet paper. RIP historic-cutsie-grown ass woman up Meghan.

And the most recent double take, the one-bedroom-compromise-but-who-cares-its-a-condo apartment. Or as I like to call it, Melrose Place. An amazing location with great amenities, however, just about as small as dream home #2..
..did I mention it lacked a bedroom door? Something, in the end, I just couldn't part with. RIP Primetime TV Meghan. Maybe another day...

The moral of the story here is that not only has all of this searching been time consuming and disappointing, I've realized doing it on my own has added stress, not fun! If I know something makes me happy, will my boyfriend like it too? Is it big enough? Now is it too big to heat? Too much money? Close enough to get us where we need to go? 

Don't get me wrong, I know its not the end of the world if something ends up being just OK, but lets be real. Moving is awful and I'd like to only do it once (for now..its not like I plan on bearing my first child in this house). Not only do I want to find a place that's good enough and worth our money, I want to find one that we won't have to move from for the next two or three years. When I moved into my apartment in August, I turned to my Dad and let him know "alright, well looks like I'm staying here forever."  And so my apartment anxiety was born.

Will I we  find something? Yes, because we have to; we've got to live somewhere! But this anxiety, as self-induced as it is, has got me near my breaking point. Is there something deeper there? Maybe. Maybe its all the change that's on the horizon. Maybe its me wanting to do right by the one thing I can control in this whole crazy, mixed up situation I've found myself in. Maybe its me wanting to cross one thing off the list so I can feel like I've made any sort of progress in this grueling time apart. Maybe. 

All I know is right now all its giving me is a big, fat, headache. Good thing "A" is for Advil, too.

To be continued..

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