New Year, Less Bullshit.

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… or at least that’s my goal anyway. I really don’t do resolutions, nor do I take them seriously to be honest. Why make a resolution like “I’m going to eat healthy”, when we all know I’m going home to eat my weight in pasta more nights than not? Mostly though, I like the fresh start that a new calendar year brings. It’s like a brand new book that I get to write, and the possibilities are endless.

Someone I was speaking to the other day didn’t understand this way of thinking. The way they came off was condescending, like myself and people who think in a similar fashion are unintelligent for looking forward to the new year. New Year’s Day is just another day to them, and if any of the rest of us had a bad year (ie: 2016 sucks! posts) it’s either dumb to think that way or we bring it upon ourselves.

I don’t know, I guess I kind of get that idea. I mean, in reality January 1st is just another day. For me, I guess it just symbolizes a new start. Every day is a new start, a fresh page, especially more so it seems since I’ve been diagnosed with a chronic illness. The way my head has figured it out, is that I have a lot of shitty days. Literally and figuratively. I have many, many days where I just don’t feel up to even getting out of bed. However, on those days, I’ll lay there, get all grumpy, and have to remind myself.. “tomorrow is a brand new day, I might feel better tomorrow.” So that thought process naturally flows over onto Mondays, and each month that passes as well as years.

This past year was a little rough. Especially in the beginning. Back in the beginning of the year, I was still struggling with being single for the first time in almost 5 years. Then on top of that, I had developed Inappropriate Sinus Tachycardia (IST) out of nowhere. So the first half of the year was basically spent trying to cope with yet another life changing diagnosis. Then of course I had a bad string of dating, and finances from being sick caught up to me. Yeah, rough. Not as bad as the year before though, and honestly, as the year went on it did get immensely better.

So for 2017, I’m kissing the previous year goodbye. Each year will get better, and I don’t think it’s a negative thing to dislike a year because of what happened in it. However, the last year, if I could change¬†anything¬†about it, I would change my perspective. I spent so much time being negative about everything that happened to me, I lost a lot of time I could’ve done something with my energy. I focused so hard on the things that were going south, or the changes my life made without my consent, that I missed celebrating all of the goodness I do have in my life.

So this year, I am going to be focusing on the positive. Positivity creates positivity or whatever that fuck that saying is. I’ve started a 2nd journal (a¬†beautiful¬†handmade leather one Jon got me for Christmas) and am using it as a gratitude journal. Each day, regardless of the tough things that happen, or the day to day frustrations, I am going to write a handful of things that I am grateful about (and within) my life. No matter what we do as human beings, we are all bound to have a rough day here and there. I’m just hoping that on those rough days, I can open my journal and appreciate the things that are hidden beneath all the crap.

Today I wrote my gratitude entry on my lunch break. Since yesterday morning, my headache has returned despite my medicines (head infection Рvertigo) I got on Friday. I was a bit worn out and by lunch time was starting to look down on my day as my stomach started hurting as well. So I wrote.

I just made a simple list:

  • an attentive boyfriend who checks in on me throughout the day.
  • a daughter who albeit is grumpy about going to school tomorrow had a blast during holiday break.
  • coworkers that I don’t want to murder most days.
  • my new favorite sweater that I’m pretty sure I stole from my sister inadvertently.
  • knowing I’m going home to a cozy house, a hot cup of tea, my chatter bug kid and my coloring books.

Nothing specific. Broad range. Yet, after writing it down, reviewing each in my head, and then writing a bit in my other journal, I honestly felt a bit better about the day. Am I tired? Oh yes, painsomnia struck last night, so I’m yawning my way through the day. Do I hurt? Of course. Yet, my phone goes off with Jon checking in to see how I am. I know I get to hear all about the short kid’s last day of break when I pick her up. For now? I’m warm and snuggly in my sweater (sorry Chelsea!) with a cup of tea.. and I know tonight is going to be full of snuggles, hot tea, some scifi, and some coloring while I’m wrapped in my blankets.

That simple journal entry reminded me that I am damn lucky to have what I do have. I should be grateful that I have so many good people, and comforts in my life. It could always be worse, so I have to appreciate what I’ve got.

This outlook/journalling is working so far. Let’s see if I can keep it up throughout this new year. It is a new book after all, and despite what we can’t control, we can control how we feel through it all.

 

Happy New Years Everyone.
Much Love. Xx

A bit jaded, but not broken.

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If you had asked me a year ago if I’d be in a relationship now, I’d have broken the nearest chair to stab you with a shard of the leg. If you had told me I’d be falling asleep smiling and waking up to a good morning text every day, I’d have laughed at you. My, oh my, how your life can change in a short year.

More than a year ago, that wreck of a relationship Ryan and I had ended. It ended brutally too. I had caught on that he had been cheating on me for about a year (I’m guessing), and when I confronted him about it, he left. Not only did he shred my trust, but he hurt my daughter, as he was a father figure to her. To top it off? He took pretty much everything out of the house, from furniture all the way down to the ranch dressing and peanut butter.

At the time, I was heartbroken, especially having to face replacing normal household things right around Christmas. It was hard, and I was very cynical, but my friends, family, and coworkers (my 2nd family) rallied around my daughter and I and made sure everything was replaced and we had a wonderful Christmas.

Still. I was pretty intent on staying single. I had a couple pseudo-relationships over the spring/summer. One of which, almost 5 months later requested that I give back a gift he had given me to track my heart-rate (because of Inappropriate Sinus Tachycardia) in order to get back some books I had lent him back. The other one, stole my medicine and was a closet drunk! Trust me, it was fun (sarcasm, if you couldn’t tell). Regardless, no feelings were hurt on my end, beyond a touch of anger. So coming into the end of summer and fall, I was content to just be me.

I continued to enjoy my solo evenings with a cup of tea, and the random beers with friends. Hanging out with my kid, and keeping up with chores. Wasn’t looking for anything. However, as the saying goes.. when you stop looking, is when someone steps into your life.

Enter stage right; Jon. We’ve been dating a few months (? – I’ve never been good at keeping track of this kind of stuff) and for the first time in my life, someone is showing me exactly what my daughter and I deserve. From the way he includes my daughter in everyday things, to the way he helps around the house for no other reason than he is there and I deserve the help. I’ve been blessed with a man, who (not only isn’t on the sex offender registry haha) works, takes time to see me, and does simple things to show me he cares, like stopping by my work because I said I needed a hug.

It is unbelievable to have someone who doesn’t treat my “sick-days” like an inconvenience, or throws my fatigue in my face. Someone who puts as much effort into every day things as I do. While he does buy me little things he thinks I’ll like, he doesn’t try to buy my affection with extravagant gifts. He’s a grown ass man, who understands, that if he gives me a gift, it’s out of kindness, and he doesn’t expect anything in return. (Word to the wise guys.. just because you buy a girl something, doesn’t mean she has to like you or have sex with you. Just sayin’.) From my mopey-depressed-I-hate-everything days to the I’m-on-top-of-the-world-don’t-need-anyone days, he’s there, and he’s got my back.

Now I’m just working on fighting through some of my baggage with relationships. Surprisingly, I haven’t had many thoughts or worries of him cheating on me. When I found out Ryan cheated, I immediately imagined throwing literal baggage into my brain. Cute little suitcases with skulls and flowers on them. So meh, I’m not arguing that, just chalking it up to being too lazy to worry about it. However, I do apologize for damn near everything. The last couple of years with Ryan, he spent complaining about me. From how I cleaned, to being sick, to having a down day or even how much or little I worked. So now, if I have a mopey day, “I’m sorry” slips out before I even have a chance to catch it. It’s still just a habit. Jon lets me know that I have nothing to be sorry for, but still.. it’s there. I even catch myself saying sorry, or flinching about stupid shit that used to start a fight, but I know it’s silly. I’ll get over it at some point. Finances? Even though we’ve only been together for a few months, I still feel compelled to explain where I got the money for a gas station coffee. Through the thin times (when just I was working or when Ryan started working and bitching about paying his share) Ryan and I would fight because I’d scrap together change for something for me. I manage to catch myself now, because god dammit I deserve a coffee once in a while, but I still get mad that that’s a habit I have.

I just keep thinking, so this is what a normal relationship is like? No anger, no yelling, no belittling, no gas-lighting. No probation officers, he can take my daughter to school if I’m sick, or come to the park with us. Child-related crap doesn’t just fall on me. Hell, far far far down the line, if we ever bought another house, or if he was interested in buying property with me up north, we can buy anywhere.. not just 500 ft away from schools. For Christ’s sake, there’s been no bomb falling like “oh by the way, your house is going to be on the registry now”. There’s no staying out all night coming home with hickeys and such. There’s no drinking behind my back, no missing meds, no expectations of more with a gift.

So here’s to something good, something that will hopefully last. Am I bragging? Maybe. However, after the shit I’ve been through in the past 15 years? I’m going to enjoy this wonderful person who fell in my life. Why the fuck not? It’s about damn time.

 

xx

Twas a 4 Day Weekend..

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So today was the first day back at work after 4 days off. The prior week we also had a long weekend, and only worked 2 days. Lets just say it was a lot more needed than I originally thought. The stress from work and every day stuff had really been building up, and I hadn’t noticed how bad. So it was bliss. I could tell the difference while I was driving into work this morning, (Stevie goes in before me.. haha) I wasn’t making a list of the things I’d need to take care of, and my shoulders weren’t up to my ears. It was very fun, and very laid back and I enjoyed every minute of it.

Thursday, my family came over for the short one’s birthday, in addition to two of her friends. It was so relaxing just to chit chat, have some beers and grill (the new grill rocks!) while the kids tore around the yard. Noodle LOVES her new bike, and is having conniption fits over all her other toys and clothes. She had the biggest smile on her face the whole day! Birthday Number 9 was a success!

Friday was for relaxing. Just took care of some things around the house, and then Steve and I sat outside and had some beers with the neighbors. I’ve said it once, and I’ll say it again, I adore that family. They are like my second family, and if they end up moving this year, I don’t know what I’m going to do without them.

Saturday we had Steve’s uncle and aunt over for more grilling. Noodle went and played next door and got spoiled. I don’t think I’ve laughed that hard in a long time. Seriously, it was one of those laughing fits where you know there’s a distinct possibility that you might pee yourself. I absolutely adore his family so far, which is a bonus!

Sunday, we worked on the yard and garden. I had already planted, but I wanted to weed again, thin the radishes and put my tomato cages up. We cleaned and organized the shed, put my AC units in, and finished up the house. The end of the weekend was spent sitting on the deck for dinner and enjoying the beautiful weather. My little Noodle was at a sleepover, so it was a kid free evening too!

Seriously, it was a wonderful weekend. Between my daughter making me smile, and Steve making me smile, I don’t think I got grumpy at all (well except before my morning coffee, that’s a given). I can’t wait until our mini vacation next month, it’s going to be great.

I do have to say that I’m really happy with the way things are going with everything. The house, work, Noodle, my relationship with Stevie. Everything’s pretty smooth. It’s been a while since I’ve been consistently happy. I’m glad life took this turn, it’s about time. :)

 

Summer Time and the Living’s Easy

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I am so incredibly thrilled that it’s warming up outside! It seemed like Winter was lasting forever and Spring would never come. Just to give an example of how wonky the weather has been, we had a freeze warning on Mother’s Day, which is usually the day we can start planting.

Either way, now it’s almost June and it’s finally not so damn cold. The garden is growing, the yard looks good. I still need to add some flowers, but it’s getting there. We’ve been using the new grill too, and with the deck umbrella out, all I need is an extra large glass of iced coffee.

School is out already too, the short one’s district let out early so they could start on construction in the school, so she’s thrilled and bouncing off of the walls. Summer camp starts soon, and she’s been outside with the neighbor boy almost every day lately. I could definitely tell that she was getting tired of being cooped up in the house with all of the rain and gloom outside.

Speaking of school being out, I can’t believe my short one is going into the 4th grade this fall. Time really does fly, and she did so well this past year too. Now if I could just get her to do regular chores, life would be golden. Ha.

So beyond all that, and a Crohns flare, things are actually going really good. Steve’s been helping out a ton, and work is going good. We’re going up to the lake house I think this weekend, and I can’t wait. It’s so nice to go up now since we can bring Thumbs with. When I was still taking care of my ex’s dog, I had to find a dog sitter since she had so many problems. ¬†Potty-ing in the house, howling, chewing, food aggression.. you name it. Thumbs? Well my family can’t get enough of her. She’s so well behaved now, she doesn’t even need a leash up there. Getting out and up north is now stress free.

Oh and for you nosy girls that I call family, yes. I started a new relationship. Started dating Steve, a guy from my shop. It wasn’t intentional, as I wasn’t looking for a new relationship,¬†¬†but it fell together with the prompting of friends/his family. ¬† I’m a happy girl to say the least, it’s like I found an old soul, with old school manners.. and those of you who know me personally know that’s right up my alley. He makes me smile, and now a days? That’s important.

Honestly, if you had asked me a year ago if I’d be this happy with life, I would have laughed at you. Things aren’t perfect, they never are (mainly my health, but meh, you can’t win them all) but I’m definitely content. I feel like I’m finally finding interest in things again, doing what makes me happy. I spent far too much time living under someone else’s thumb, basically being miserable, it feels so good to finally be me.

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As for this summer, I’m just winging it. Definitely spending more time up north, and with family. It’s been nice reconnecting with friends too, and I do want to take a long weekend out to visit a few friends on my list. The biggest thing on my to-do list is continuing to do things that make me happy. Whether it be reading my books, writing more, or getting myself lost in the forest preserves. A bicycle is in my cards for this summer, now I can finally get one (and seeing as how Noodle’s birthday present this year from Steve and I is a new bike … and roller skates from me.. I’ll need something to keep up with her!) and take the short kid to the trails. Oh and can’t forget the concerts on my list. It’s going to be a great summer!

Come on Spring!

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Every little taste of warm weather gets me even more excited for Spring. I have so many things I’m looking forward to that it’s beyond ridiculous at this point. After everything that’s gone on in this past few months, it feels like I have a fresh start.. at pretty much everything. So I guess that’s what Spring is to me this year, a figurative new leaf, a fresh start, everything.

So this year I’m going to be doing the garden all on my own, and quite frankly I’m thrilled. In the next week or two I’m going to go buy myself an asparagus plant, hopefully I two year one if I can find it. I’ve been meaning to plant asparagus for years, but I’m too impatient to wait for it, or I talk myself out of it at the last second. When I put that plant in the ground, I’ll probably go ahead and put in my first round of radishes and lettuce. I’m not sure what else will go in the garden this year, definitely green beans and tomatoes, maybe some peppers and carrots, but beyond that I’m still debating. When my ex was still maintaining the garden, we kept planting things we really didn’t eat a whole lot (eggplant, broccoli) and I really don’t want to waste the space this year. I don’t know, I’ll figure it out soon I hope. Haha.

Moving on. So the ex came and picked up his dog the other day. A small part of me misses that stinky old hound, but the stress in my house has decreased significantly. Dealing with two dogs, one of which was a stubborn nose-driven-beagle was just too much for me with everything else that’s going on. One more dog is much more manageable for me. It has it’s perks too. I let Thumbs stay out of the crate at night now, and she’s much happier and I’m sleeping much better now too. I had always crated her with Zoe because I’d feel bad putting one dog in the crate and leaving the other out. Zoe though couldn’t be out at night or anytime we weren’t in the room since she’d have accidents in the house and rummage through the garbage can every chance she’d get. Beyond that, it’s much more convenient now to go take a walk with Thumbs. With both dogs, they’d both go every which way, and pairing that with my motor mouth child, walks were far from relaxing. Now, my dog just does her business, and Noodle and I talk while walking. We’ve made it a goal to walk at least 4 times a week. So far I’m loving it. The mild exercise paired with the lower stress in the house is really helping me keep my head in a good place.

My birthday is coming up as well. This year is the big 30, which to me feels like 40 but who’s counting. I’m not as effected by the number as I thought I would be. I mean, I’ve already hit most of the milestones my age group is going through right now, years ago. So I guess it’s not a big ole thing. Not sure about a mid-life crisis yet either, I’m pretty sure I’m mentally 80 years old as soon as I get off of work. I’m content with a book, my journal and some coffee or tea. The rowdy night out is a rarity, and has been for a while. That’s fine with me. I always thought I’d be upset about turning 30 though, and honestly, I keep forgetting about it. We’ll see. I know Noodle is more excited than I am, but beyond that I’m not sure if I’m even doing anything for my birthday. Who knows!

Work is going well, same shit, different day, and I’m still there so that’s a bonus. I’m working on writing more, but haven’t been able to really drill anything solid out. I’m still on the hunt for a group of some sort to join, but I’m not really finding anything I like yet. I did find one group the next town over that’s something along the lines of books and brews at a local pub that sounds fun, but I haven’t had a chance to check them out.

My health stuff is basically stable, my Crohns pops up here and there, and my heart hasn’t given me the finger lately. Feeling quite a bit better with my anxiety and such as well, but all of that is a work in progress I guess. Just glad to finally be feeling more normal and.. gasp.. dare I say.. happy?¬†I guess not being told how much of a horrible person I am damn near every day helps. Whodathunk?

The kiddo is doing great! She just brought home another report card earlier this week. She’s still getting straight A’s! I’m really proud of her, and that’s honestly an understatement. She’s doing so well in school, and has really stepped it up with helping out around the house. She’s about excited for spring as I am. I think I’m going to get her a new set of roller skates as a gift for her report card, and to give her something to do outside. The kid not only beats me out in smarts, but she’s still hella more agile than I ever was. I swear, she keeps me on my toes.

That’s about it I guess. Planning a big vacation with the family later this spring, but beyond that, it’s been pretty laid back and relaxing. It’s been interesting finding peace again, and honestly, I can’t help but to say that I’m content with the turn my life has taken this past year. I’ve learned a lot, faced a lot (especially the heart issues) and came out better for it. I guess.. cheers to spring! Let’s see where life takes me now!

Moving on up!

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After the craziness of the last few months, life is starting to take on a bit more normalcy. It’s been one hell of a ride, that’s for sure! For once though, I feel like I am coming out a better, happier more knowledgeable person.  

So my heart (be still my beating heart haha) is doing better. I haven’t had any more major issues beyond a couple shot lived episode a few weeks ago. I also prepared myself and learned how to cope if they do happen, and I have a prescription if things get worse again. So far no worries. Back to basic life for me. (Hopefully my EP was right and it was a short lived thing!)

I however did get quite a bit of anxiety from the whole ordeal. I think having your heart stopped and restarted in the ER will do that for anyone. So I took a first step and found myself a really sweet therapist. It’s nice to be able to really tell someone everything… something I haven’t been able to do in about 5 years. She’s helping me learn how to cope with my illnesses as well as being a single mom (again). I’m glad I took that step, as it seems to be really helping me straighten myself and my life out. She’s given me great advice from how to deal with doctors, (she even found me one when I didn’t like the new one I had) to how to take steps to stop being a doormat for people, to great budgeting ideas and resources for writing and art.

Beyond that, I’ve also been making it a point to write and read daily again. Just to get the creativity flowing. I started feeling more confident with myself just doing that.

Oh! Even managed to go a few miles at the forest preserve already. It was so nice out, and felt good to get active again. Noodle and I are just starting to work on the yard for spring (I’ve got a feeling it won’t be as easy as taking it all down for winter). We’re both excited for the garden this year, as well as planting our flowers! She’s really involved with it too!

Nood has been doing great! Grades are steady in school with good behavior. She really has stepped it up with helping at home with chores. I’m proud of my little munchkin.

I’ve also been able to start reconnecting with friends I haven’t seen in forever! I forgot what having a social life is like! What I’m working on now is finding a club I want to join. I’ve been looking for quite sometime, just can’t decide.

All in all, things are going well. I hope the trend continues! It feels so great to finally feel happy again after all those years filled with doubt and anxiety! Looking forward to Spring!

Have a nice night everyone!

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Smiling.

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Birthdays usually don’t go as planned for me. Not to say that they’re horrible, but more like I seem to have child-like expectations and the day seems to miss it’s mark.

I have to say that this year I was more than pleasantly surprised. We really had no concrete plans, but I enjoyed almost every moment of it. Now, at the end of the weekend, sitting here with my cup of tea, I am happy.

Ry, the kids, and I went up to the lake house to see my Dad. I love it up there, from the quiet (my aversion to people) to nature, to spending time with my family… I almost hate coming back. We spent some time outside, the kids got to go on a walk on the shore to collect shells, and ate some delicious food. Between spending time with my family and getting some quiet moments, it was perfect. Ry and the kids picked out a matching bracelet and ring set made from spoons and we did an Easter egg hunt for the kids.

After all of that, we made the trek home. While we were up north though, Zach and Ryan built me a tea case. From cutting, sanding to assembling.. it was all them.

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I absolutely adore it! I love handmade gifts, and the fact that both of them worked together on it makes me tear up. I love it.

So here I am, end of the day, kid in bed and tea in hand. It was a good birthday thanks to my family.