Thursday, April 30, 2015

Thankful Thursdays - Year 3

Day 163 - Thursday 4/30/15 - Starting off the morning with a snuggling pup is the. best. ever.

Day 162 - Wednesday 4/29/15 -  I love my doctor.  Who else would squeeze you in on their lunch hour at the very last second?  My doctor!

Day 161 - Tuesday 4/28/15 - Never realized how comfortable a couch can be during incredibly uncomfortable conversations, when the person sharing the couch with you genuinely wants to help.

Day 160 - Monday 4/27/15 - Spring?  Is that you?  Welcome back!

Day 159 - Sunday 4/26/15 - Enjoyed tea and conversation with two delightful women this morning.  Great way to kick off my Sunday!

Day 158 - Saturday 4/25/15 - Delicious dinner with my bff at an amazing restaurant.  My taste buds were happy as was my heart!

Day 157 - Friday 4/24/15 - I love putting the peanut to bed on Friday nights.  Nothing like an infant sleeping in your arms to make any day better.

Tuesday, April 28, 2015

Define Success

How do you define success?

Married?  Two kids?  White picket fence?  Labradoodle?  Salary?  Social circle?  Beauty?   Career?  Inner calm?  Physical fitness?

All of the above?

I thought I had a definition of success.  In my mind, you were successful when you reached the place where you were married, with two kids, a cozy home (not too big, not too small,) a lively and supportive social circle, a nest egg, a career that paid for everything, family vacations, a good education, and health.  One parent was always available for the kids, either due to job flexibility or being a stay at home parent.

Over time, my definition shrunk.  You were considered successful if you were married and had a family, with a nice little house and a few family vacations or stay-cations every year.  Ideally, someone was always available for the kids, and there was a stay at home parent until the kids reached school age.

From there, it further shrunk to involve a partner and a family with a supportive social circle, a safe home, and a healthy community.

All of my definitions of success involve having a family.

And here I am, in my late 30s, without one.  Single as a sliver. 

So if you ask me if I'd consider myself a success, I'd quickly reply with a definitive no.

Until tonight.

Success.  I have a great job, career, actually, that I love.  There is limitless room for growth and expansion in this career.  I am recognized as an expert in my area (which still makes me very, very uncomfortable.)  I have financial independence and security that I built for myself.  I have a home that is just right for me (even though I now want different) and in a safe area where I feel comfortable.  And despite all my health challenges of the past, I'm on a forward moving road to neutralizing my health overall, thanks to the most incredible support team in the world.

Success.  Family is not mentioned above.  Yeah, I have my brother and his wife and the peanut, whom I adore.  I get to be an aunt and enjoy the love that comes with that.  But I have no partner.  I share my house (still not quite a home) with the Pup and an aloe plant.  And I've kept that aloe plant alive for nearly three years.  Success.

Not quite what I pictured when I pictured success, but for now..... I'm working on changing my image of it.  Re-framing success, if you will.

How do you define success?

Sunday, April 26, 2015

That's Me!

Yep.  That's me.  Hypersensitive.  Oversensitive.  Emotionally excessive.  Call it what you want.  
Just make sure that from now on, you call me an Empathetic Badass.

Thursday, April 23, 2015

Thankful Thursday - Year 3

Day 156 - Thursday 4/23/15 - Super happy to have the chance to get a fresh start at just about everything in life.  Now, my goal is to make the best of this..... how do I do that....?

Day 155 - Wednesday 4/22/15 - Haven't thrown this one out in a while..... but today I'm feeling especially thankful for my therapist.  As I move through a massive transition, her support continues to be invaluable.

Day 154 - Tuesday 4/21/15 - Realizing that it is possible to sit with a feeling and not die.

Day 153 - Monday 4/20/15 - Finished conferences.  Technically, finished my last conference for a long, long time, if not forever.  Ended it on a very, very good note.

Day 152 - Sunday 4/19/15 - Sleep.  Loved spending most of my day sleeping........ much needed catch-up!

Day 151 - Saturday 4/18/15 - Wonderful morning with colleagues and wonderful evening with friends.  Together, with a nap, they made for a pretty nice Saturday!

Day 150 - Friday 4/17/15 -  Got chewed out by a parent today during conferences.  Didn't take it personally.  Not one drop of it.  Go me!

Monday, April 20, 2015

Construction Time

"I hope you are beginning to crack some of the windows in the house you built around you to allow some great things in, and perhaps, to allow some not so good thoughts to escape."

My dietitian said this to me the other day in my email check in.  She's so good it sometimes frightens me.  It's as if she knows what is going through my head, the fears, the justifications, the cover ups..... She sees it without my saying or doing anything.

And she's right.  I keep things shut up tightly so that nothing escapes.  I don't want to "poison" anyone with the toxic thoughts that permeate my mind when it comes to who I am.   The problem with keeping things shut up so tightly is that while I'm keeping all the not so good stuff in, so as not to spread the toxicity, I'm not allowing the good stuff to come in, either.  In essence, I'm perpetuating a fairly dangerous cycle - surrounding myself only with toxic air, and not allowing any fresh air to enter and replace the toxins with clean, breathable space.

I'm the one holding myself hostage in the dungeon.  I'm in the cell, but I hold the key to let myself out, too.  I've convinced myself that I'm doing it for everyone else's protection.  The truth is, I'm protecting myself.  I'm hiding myself behind the walls to keep out the potential pain.  Now I realize that I'm the one inflicting it upon myself, and until I let myself out?  That torture will continue.

My treatment team have been working their way over my walls for years.  Maybe it's time to start breaking the walls apart, and make it easier to let the fresh air into my life....

Thursday, April 16, 2015

Thankful Thursdays - Year 3

Day 149 - Thursday 4/16/15 -  Received some reassurance from an unexpected place today.  Needed that.

Day 148 - Wednesday 4/15/15 - Took the chance of a lifetime today.  Let the adventure begin......

Day 147 - Tuesday 4/14/15 - I.  Stood.  Up.  For.  Myself.  I spoke up and made sure that I was taking care to ensure I would come out ok in the end.  And it worked.

Day 146 - Monday 4/13/15 - Enjoyed the first day back after spring break - the class was in a fun mood and we actually got EVERYthing done on our agenda, which is rare!

Day 145 - Sunday 4/12/15 - Never realized how satisfying it is to see a drawer full of clean socks and another full of clean underwear.  Clean laundry accomplished!

Day 144 - Saturday 4/11/15 - Though this might sound strange, I'm really rediscovering my love of writing......

Day 143 - Friday 4/10/15 - Got caught up on my schoolwork that has been staring at me all week.  Feels good to be done and caught up!

Saturday, April 11, 2015



I'm the kind of person who prefers to attribute all my successes to luck.  That takes the pressure off of me to actually accept being "good enough" for something good to happen to me.  One of these days I'll have to start owning up to the "good" the way I accept responsibility for the "not so good" in my world.


I'm getting a do-over.  My therapist and I have talked about this possibility many times before, and the fact that it is actually happening is so surreal.  I know that getting this do over..... I've gotten quite lucky.  A chance like this doesn't come around all that often, if ever.  That's part of the appeal of this offer, the chance to take my professional experiences and start over in a new environment, where I will get to build the professional image that will be helpful, and feel good.   Not the one I currently live in, the one I created where colleagues don't need to respect me.

Make Your Own Luck

I'm going to step up.   I'm going to show up.  I'm going to take this new opportunity and thank my lucky stars it appeared in my world.   And I'm going to attribute it all to


This chance may be one of sheer luck.  But one day...  One day?   I will start making my own


Thursday, April 9, 2015

Thankful Thursday - Year 3

Day 142 - Thursday 4/9/15 - Driving home from the peanut's tonight, the pup was on my lap looking up at me.  His little face makes me so smiley and thankful every single day.

Day 141 - Wednesday 4/8/15 - Enjoyed a delicious dinner and dialogue with a dear friend!

Day 140 - Tuesday 4/7/15 - I.  Pushed.  Through.  Made myself make a dinner I didn't want to, and while it took a while, I made myself eat it too.

Day 139 - Monday 4/6/15 - It always feels good talking to my therapist, especially now, as she reminded me today that I am worth advocating for.

Day 138 - Sunday 4/5/15 - Snuggling with the peanut always makes breathing a little easier.

Day 137 - Saturday 4/4/15 - I think I've found my sleep again.  Thank g-d.

Day 136 - Friday 4/3/15 - Had a great start to spring break - spent the day with my BFF and her family and enjoyed an awesome art museum that the kids really liked!

Tuesday, April 7, 2015

Unwavering Commitment

My dietitian has been using this phrase over the past few weeks, and when I finally sat down to google it yesterday, nothing.  So I decided that when I met with her today, I'd try my hardest not to sidetrack the conversation, and actually learn about this concept of unwavering commitment.

I'll be honest.  It was what I hoped it wouldn't be.

unwavering commitmentverb; to persist in meeting a goal or completing a task no matter what obstacles may arise in the process --
ex. Julie had an unwavering commitment to her health, and always fit in her workouts each and every week, no matter how hectic her schedule.

I could make a joke here, and ask where I can get a bottle of this unwavering commitment she speaks of, but yeah.  This isn't anything to joke about.  This is, finally, something that deserves my attention.

What is this going to look like for me?
1.  Put myself first.  How?  Get enough protein.  Get enough veggies, fiber, water.  Every.  Single.  Day.
2.  Acknowledge my anxiety, but don't allow it to dictate my food choices anymore.  Even if I feel like I can't eat whatever it is I know I "should" eat, even if my anxiety is screaming at me to stop eating that "thing", whatever it may be, I must push through anyway.  What's the worst that will happen?  I get sick?  That isn't the end of the world.
3.  Respect myself.  Scary as $%&#, but if I don't speak up for myself, tell people that the way they're treating me isn't ok, then who will?  No one.  That's who.

There's more.  There's lots more.  But this is a start for me.  I'm hoping to reach the place where when I crawl into bed, I can say "I am proud of my commitment to me today."  It is gonna take a while, but I will get there.  If she thinks I can, then I will.

(Hopefully my dietitian will blog about unwavering commitment.  I'll link it if she does!)

Saturday, April 4, 2015

Too Cool? Too Weird?

I saw this quote the other day and SO me.

Maybe a week ago, I would have glanced at it, thought, "boy does that sound like me," and moved on.

This week, though?  No such luck.

The other day I was asked a question that I really did not want to answer.  So I gave a generic but true response, and tried (successfully) to switch subjects.

The question was something along the lines of "why don't you think you would be able to make more friends?"

And this, my friends, is the answer.  This quote sums it all up.

I don't know if it would be so bad if I weren't one of those "quirky" people who sorta-maybe-kinda would like to be friends with the "cool" crew.  It wouldn't be as bad if the so-called "cool" people at work weren't so UGH to me.  They seek me out for support, and then mock me behind my back.  That is not cool.

Since I learned that, though, I no longer aim to be friends with any of them.  I remain ever the professional, and give them little to no thought.

Thing is.  The.  Thing.  Is.
I'm heading into a whole new group of colleagues.  And the ones I've met so far?  They are awesome, and so the "cool" crew that I really want to befriend.  I think they'd be nice people to hang out with.

But I'm.  Too.  Quirky.  AndI'mAfraidTheyWon'tLikeMeWhenTheyGetToKnowMe.

Right now they really like me.  They're really looking forward to me working with them.  And I'm SUPER excited to be working with them.  But again....

I know change is scary.
I know change is good.
But is it possible to change from the too weird for cool or too cool for weird?
Is it possible to be the "quirky" me that I am, and have people like me anyway?

Thursday, April 2, 2015

Thankful Thursday - Year 3

Day 135 - Thursday 4/2/15 - I am grateful that today begins a week off of school.  It is much needed for my students, and, well, for everyone at school!

Day 134 - Wednesday 4/1/15 - I don't know if I want to wake up from today.  It is a day I'll remember for as long as I live.  Cause a new chapter is about to begin......

Day 133 - Tuesday 3/31/15 - Thankful for the support I have in my world.  Thankful for the opportunity to experience such beauty today.

Day 132 - Monday 3/30/15 - Above and beyond - so grateful for a special trip to the store with my awesome dietitian.  Time to start embracing clothes that actually embrace me.

Day 131 - Sunday 3/29/15 - Very rough day today.  Grateful for Xanax, as it really made breathing a possibility on a day when I couldn't take a deep breath.

Day 130 - Saturday 3/28/15 - I missed the peanut.  There is nothing like snuggling before bed.

Day 129 - Friday 3/27/15 - Fantastic day today - from our classroom visitor this morning to an entertaining evening of student showcases.  All around fun!

Wednesday, April 1, 2015

Maybe It's True

Maybe it's really true.  Good things happen to those who wait.  Karma.  You only get what you give.  What goes around comes around.  You know all those cliches. 

I'm starting to believe they really are true.

I mean, I've lived my life by the "everything is meant to be" and "everything happens for a reason" rules.  I firmly believe in them, too.

I just didn't really think that the "good" of all this would find me.  I haven't earned it.

I guess I was wrong.

Because my life changed today.  I got news that will inexplicably change my whole world.  And if everything works out the way I wish it to, then things are about to get really, really, different.  And really, really good.

It feels too good to be true.  Like I don't deserve something of this amount of "goodness."  But it's true.  And it's real.  And...... well...... it's going to be good.  It's going to be really, really good.