Weighing in

So if you recall, last month, I posted about actually exercising when I say I will and the whole nine. Since then, I have been actually walking. Mind you, not to the extent I used to. No 5-7 miles daily for me (although I would love to). Slowly, but surel , I am getting there. The catalyst (publishing a post and saying it out loud, so to speak) to actually walking more than a quick ’round the block’ with my dog was strongly reinforced last weekend. It was amazing!

Last weekend I spent much needed time with family in California.  I told my aunt I wanted to really walk ….and eat well. Did she fulfill my request? Hell, yeah! I had some amazing walks and got to catch up and talk. It was fantastic. We walked all over her neighborhood, CoD, and Sunnylands, not to mention some other great places. I kept my Apple watch on all day,  accumulating extra  miles through out the day. I was racking up 4-7 miles a day. Fantastic, I thought. This is the way to go! I was absolutely excited to be back in the game. I could go on and on about how amazing the weekend was with my aunt and uncle, but  I mustn’t digress.  This is about exercise….so I left California kicking and screaming. LOVE, LOVE, LOVE it there!!

So here I am on a Sunday, back home. About a week and what have I done since California? I definitely have not done 4-7 mile days. However, I have been able to get daily 1-4 mile walks in. Sometimes slow walks with my puggle Max. Sometimes at a faster clip. I wish I could say I have already gotten  back to my power walks with 14 minute miles. Damn! That’s the most frustrating part. I can’t seem to walk faster than a 15 or 16 minute mile. Maddening! Perhaps I need to mix my exercise with better food from the diet I achieved so much success from last year.

I realize what I remember to be true. I am going to really have to curb my eating habits as well as really amp up my power walks. They can’t be leisurely strolls. I need to kick ass. Kiss ass and just STOP with the cookies and anything that may tempt me at the office.

Little by little, I will chip away and be ready for my spring dresses. This post makes me want to go out and buy salad ingredients! Yay me!!

What do you guys do daily to watch what you put in your body and get that daily calorie burn?? I would love some  hints. I did well last year, but could refresh with some new ideas!! Please comment and I’ll read each one!

Enjoy the rest of your weekend everyone!

When I say I exercise, I want to mean it

I started an incredible diet last year. Right around this time as a matter of fact. I lost 30 pounds. I was serious. For many months. Around the holidays, I denied that I was being sucked in by the whole food thing. I can’t deny it anymore. I hate that I have gained some of the weight back. The good thing is how quickly my body made me aware of it. I got headaches when I splurged on my Valentine’s conversation hearts (you know the ones that taste like chalk? Yeah, I am pretty much addicted to them). I felt like crap after the recent doses of fast food. Thank you body for doing me right. For giving me a signal. The cool thing is I did so much good last year, that I only lost two months really, December and January. Interesting how fast weight can come back and bite you in the ass. I think I have gained at least 10 pounds and I will lose it. Back to the 5 mile walks and the grilled chicken. At least my dinners are still healthy. I make the time to ensure my dinners are not crap. It’s the day at work sitting at a cubicle that gets to me. I need to get back to my carrots and mustard dip and cucumbers. Back to early morning protein shakes. Bye bye Moe’s bagels. You were so yummy, but oh so naughty with your carbs and more carbs. Hasta la vista bagel!

So today, I rededicate my exercise initiative. There is no time like the present. I am not needing to start at square one again, but I just need to get back on the lake path at my complex.  I will be reasonable. I will not expect 14 minute mile walks. I will be happy with 15-16 minute miles. For a week. Then I will step it up.

As far as food and diet, I have been faithful to my nutritional needs and diet in the evenings, but its the day at work I am struggling with at the moment. Along with the bagels, the Doritos and the conversation hearts, the diet soda must go as well.

Ready.Set.Go!

See you on the track!

Me, Myself & I: my relationship with alone time

So, I have to confess that quite some time ago, the notion of having a weekend of no plans was terrifying. A 48 hour plus period of time where I need to spend time just with myself would have forced me into a tizzy of “What do I do, where can I go? Who should I call?” and a most uncomfortable, unsettling feeling of not being comfortable in my own skin would set in a self-imposed sense of doom. Maybe it brought back memories of being unpopular, alone, and scared.  Back in the day, I went out all the time, even by myself  to clubs etc….just to be with others and NOT all by myself. Because what could I possibly do on my own that could have value?

Turns out I LOVE alone time. I love the freedom of no accountability for 48 hours. Well, that’s not completely true. I don’t totally disconnect these days. I just merely love the idea of not making plans or feeling like I have to do any specific thing. Today, I am blessed with a few friends.  I don’t feel the need to make a ton of superficial contacts just so I have someone to do something with.  Being comfortable being alone does not mean I like to isolate. It does not. It means I walk confidently into a restaurant and say “Table for one please” or go to the movies: “One for Manchester By The Sea please” (that was my most recent solo venture)…..I’ve done this for a long time and it feels  uttlery grafiying and supremely fantastic.

Being comfortable in my own skin to stay home or go out and do when I want when I want is  freedom that I did not previously allow myself until I entered my  early 30’s. My first solo vacation (not family oriented) was when I was about 30 and traveled to Mexico on my own. That liberated me. It was the turning point. “If I can travel to Mexico alone, I can do anything in Denver alone,” was my thinking. And damn. That was just the beginning. After countless restaurants and movies and trips alone to Mexico since, I can safely say I can’t imagine being restricted by having a mate to travel with or see movies with. I can be alone at home and watch what I want or go out to the movies solo and not wait for someone to want to see the exact same thing. I don’t have to go to bar just to be near people. I am fine. On my own. Any time of the day.  Whether my friend travels with me to Paris this year (which would be the best girl’s trip ever) or not, I know I am good on my own, which liberates me and my friend at the same time. Paris is possible all on my own.

Now, I’m not going to pretend I don’t need people, period. OF COURSE I DO. I think it’s more of a question of wanting people in my life. To an extent, I need people for normal socialization. I generally just feel I want certain people in my life. I don’t per se, need them to have my own value as a person. I value myself as myself, solo. People I choose to have in my life are there because I want them. Whether they are family, different female friends, work friends or relationships of a romantic nature.  I choose them and I hope they choose me. Last year, I unfriended and blocked a lot of people on Facebook because I realized they really chose to not be friends with me or I didn’t have a genuine relationship with them. It was so liberating to know that Facebook is now  full of people I want in my life. There are more to add and more to subtract, but its liberating to know I choose what I want in my life and don’t need to have someone in my life for whatever reason.

So what to do this weekend? Besides blogging, I think I would like to catch up on a movie or two. Hanging out with my puggle on the couch with popcorn rewatching “Amy” sounds  cool also. I have so many options!

 

Have a fantastic weekend, whether you are flying solo or with great friends and family!

What my marriage taught me: about myself and relationships

I know I made some people wait quite a bit for this last installment of my three-part series of “What my marriage taught me”. I apologize for the delay. This took a bit of time for obvious reasons. It was the hardest to compose. It is the hardest because being teachable alludes a bit of humility, does it not? Yes, money and fear are big topics and there is a lot to learn. Always. But when we are talking about ourselves in our 40’s, aren’t we supposed to be experts on ourselves? On our relationships?

In my  mid 20’s and I became single after a long six-year first-love kind of thing, I thought it would be “so exciting” and how I am going to find someone better than who I had left out of impatience and drifting apart. For the record, I never did find someone better right after leaving. That’s far and away a different story. Anyway, back then it was 1995 and I was hopelessly devoted to Alanis Morissette. Jagged Little Pill was my anthem back then. Damn! I had a lot to learn.This was when I thought I knew something about something. I had a 20-something sized ego and my bumper sticker on my Honda CRX said “Whatever”. That should say someting.

Since then I had traipsed through flings, AOL chat room encounters, short relationships, being cheated on, and mostly just being single. So much, yet really not  SO much. I learned to trust less, have  too much fun and I  believed sincerely that I would sleep when I die. I was a bit of a party girl. With out the drugs. A little alcohol, but really just guys….and more of the same nightclub/bar type existence.

Advance to 2006: I had just broken up with my boyfriend (as you know, the one that would be my husband in 2009). I thought I had learned that his bit of expressed anger and rage was too much for me. I guess not. I guess his charm and his ….everything….got to me AGAIN. I just didn’t learn. Not then. Not yet.

Advance to 2010: I returned to Denver with my tail between my legs. This relationship was done. I failed. Again. This time with lessons. Oh, there were lessons. I realized what dignity was. I realized what it meant to feel I had none. I knew what rock bottom really meant. I had no idea; I was completely naive to how rock bottom would feel exactly. For me: my life reduced to boxes packed in three hours, a rented car filled with some clothes, my dog and me. I was a grown adult who only had a ring on my finger that I would need to pawn at some point, my precious puggle Max and my mom’s  American Express. I had what little cash I took out (originally $200 a week before leaving Florida) before our accounts were frozen by him.

I got home. I cried it out. Every fucking day. There were tears. Yes, tears for him. Tears when he swore me out with horrible names the night I told him I got my old job back back in Denver. Tears of loss. Tears of failure. You get the idea. I went into therapy and saw a wonderful lady who really got me through the pawning of the wedding ring (I had to eat and pay a little rent), the paperwork after being served  divorce papers at my door step by a process-server, the trauma of being such a failure. But she helped me realize that what I went through was unique, but not unique.  Not everyone gets divorced after rage, post throwing  dangerous objects, post verbal abuse and “silent treatment” episodes (to teach me lessons about talking too much). Not everyone suffers unpredictable rage that has absolutely nothing to do with what the non abuser may have actually done or not done.  But those who have been through that know what that looks like. And feels like.  Even if they didn’t know back then. The first time I had a clue that there is something beside physical abuse that counts as some type of abuse was when I called the police the second time at the encouragement of my  father. My ex hadn’t actually hurt me, but for the first and last time, he did put his hands on me in a forceful way (to extract car keys). My father said I need to report that in light of what had happened the previous nights (ex trying to kick me out of my own place). This is the first time I learned first hand of something other than physical/sexual abuse. The police officer who took my report that day gave me a list of numbers on a card that described all types of abuse. This card was given to me by a male police officer. I dont know why that’s relevant, but it was to me at that time. It was a comfort that another male would recongnize the treatment was not right. I was extremely grateful, but more grateful long after I had left Florida. I was still shell-shocked having to even make a report at the time.

So, the aftermath: 2010-2016: I survived an awful divorce and monetary losses, loss of dignity, trust, and developed a necessity for  hyper-analysis of every infraction against me that I had perceived . I think I resented what he had done  to me in the divorce and aftermath more than the crimes of the actual marital discord.  I had a few relationships in 2016 and some online adventures up to then which I posted about previously.

What I learned about everything, including 2016, the birth of my blog!

  1. Humility is being teachable and allows me to progress to better and more healthy relationships.
  2. Admitting regrets: I can regret something and recognize I made a mistake, I had a lapse of judgement. I would love to say I live with out regrets. I don’t think I can say that right now. I think that sounds a bit righteous and a little ignorant. Can’t we all admit we didn’t do something perfectly, something we would like to do a little differently?
  3. Honesty:  What do I want? What can I handle and what can’t I handle in my future relationships? What are my red flags? Can I hold up to my own side of the bargain-for the sake of my dignity, can I walk away from those red flags?
  4. Don’t write about people in current relationships with out their consent. I learned this in my last relationship after trying to get him to read my blog after every entry that mentioned him. After getting into a heated discussion, he read one and felt blindsided.  I recognize that I will preserve people’s privacy until they are comfortable with being mentioned in a most anonymous sense.
  5. I learned  that what I really have after all this is anxiety: Still. After all these years from the series of unpredictability and rage in my uber-brief marriage. I may have had it before I was even married; however, it spiraled  out of control in the years since, includng the first few  years of my recovery from the divorce. Now I can admit it is something I have to, and want to work on, something that I seek help for to make these relationships work.  So I don’t sabotage the really awesome opportunities and people who come into my life.

 

SO… some of you may be asking about #3: What are my red flags in the aftermath? What can I handle? What did I learn that I really need and got honest about it? Why don’t I write that as a part two of this third installment.

Please leave me a comment if you would like to hear more of this detail in #3 and I’d be happy to include a part two!

 

Music pairing: If I need to say it: Okay! I was inspired by Alanis, because when I am not in the old space, I need to be reminded of how it felt. Jagged Little Pill does that wonderfully.

Thanksgiving

I want to tell you something really fantastic about Thanksgiving. Something that makes us all inspired.  Something about  our gratitude and good fortune when we eat our turkey and other food in excess. Some of us watch football all day. I don’t, but hey, there it is, a great day off to eat a ton and watch football in the middle of the week.  I absolutely know, at the least, I have the privilege of good fortune  and good food and a roof over my head during m post divorce Hell (five years to be exact, six if you count when I had to leave my home).  I know friends and family have helped immensely. And that’s an incredible start to my Thanksgiving story.

It is in those simple times in my life  that I asked for  help and received it with unconditional love that i am most humble and grateful. It is  during those 364 other days of the year that I have depended on loved ones to hold me up during hard times. It is those days that I felt the most thankful.

I have to remember when we string each of the days, some tougher than others, we get something pretty awesome called LIFE. It’s not always fair. Its not always right or just.  We fall in love. Out of love. We feel wronged. We feel awesome and vindicated. But this is the deal:

We are feeling. Which means we are alive and get to start over the next day. And that’s pretty cool. We can be  thankful for that, right?  For me this is an affirmation. I am going to repeat this  affirmation for the next 48 hours and every hour after that, because really, we can NOT take this amazing life for granted.  This is NOT  a Debbie downer post. Not at all. I just want to stay humble and grateful for this life we are given every day. Sometimes that’s hard. Sometimes I feel entitled to more than just the notion of being alive. Maybe sometimes I feel I deserve something really awesome, above and beyond what I have worked for. Then I get right-sized and my ego gets bruised. A little. And I begin again. Humble. It keeps going like that.

Please let me know how your Thanksgiving week is…the anticipation of it, family angst, relationship angst, whatever it brings: Bring it on!

 

 

 

 

And now time for a commercial break….Family time!

I just left   for a short trip to see family. I am so excited and need a break! Phew..what a great time for a break to refocus and re-energize!

I am going to try to blog, but if I end up spending the valuable time I have with family making memories, I bet everyone will understand the blank wall this week!

 

Have a fantastic week and see you very very soon!

 

 

Dear America:a love letter

Dear America,

I have no words. I feel we have let you down. You have given my family a new home, a new country. On my mom’s side, my grandmother was the first one born on your soil. Your land offered a new opportunity to our family.

I love you America. Pure and simple. You have given me never-ending opportunities  and challenges. You have provided me with hope and inspiration.  It was always up to me to decide how I’d use your gifts. Thats’s your gift of freedom.  Not all of us want to trash your beautiful land. We don’t all want to disgrace the dreams you offered us on  Ellis Island. I want to do you proud.  I want to repay you and give you hope in our future as a nation. I think the last 48 hours have taught us all you need more of our  help to advance this great nation. To  renew some  hope and faith. You can count on us to  refurbish your great land.

To be grateful for  the opportunities you’ve offered me, America, I want to show my  gratitude in action. It’s all good to SAY we are grateful. Words.are.cheap.

  1. I am grateful for my education, all of it: so I paid off my student loans. I did not default on your generosity.
  2. I am proud of  my freedom of religion: so I stay true to Judaism. I will NEVER stray.EVER.
  3. I am grateful I succeeded and found my professional niche and love what I do: so I go to work and I practice the work ethic my parents instilled in me.
  4. I am grateful for my good wages: so I pay my taxes.
  5. i am grateful I have the choice of automobiles, new and leased: so I bring it in routinely for maintenance and oil changes; I  keep it nice and clean.
  6. I am grateful for health insurance: so I work hard to improve my health, mental and physical.
  7. I am grateful for good parents: so I chose to mentor and showed my path, my zeal for education, work ethic,  and opportunity to another.

The list goes on, America. I hope you remain patient with us. It may take 4 years. Or 8.

 

Love,
me, your faithful follower