I Need A New Year

2020 has been one hell of a year. Thankfully we only have a little over three months left. 2021 will bring so much that is better than this year. Life can finally get back to normal and we can put this shit show of a year behind us.

Um, no. That is not how it works.

I have heard so many variations of those three sentences over the past few weeks. So many people think that the new year will bring big change and our world will somehow just come out of this pandemic. People are assuming that 2021 will bring back life as we knew it before 2020.

I’m sorry to be the one to tell you this, but that isn’t true. That is not what 2021 will do for us. In fact, no matter what year it is, we don’t need a new year to bring about change in our life.

If you want change in your life, I mean, really truly want change, then you don’t need a new year. You don’t need a new year, a new month, or a new week. You simply need a new moment. Every single moment we breathe air on this earth is a new moment to enact change in our life.

Are you in a bad mood? Take this moment, this very moment, and make the decision that you will take a breath and change your mood. Maybe you need two breaths and two moments, but you absolutely can change your mood.

Do you want to learn something new? What are you doing right this moment? Reading this blog? Well get off whatever service you are on and go learn that thing you want to learn! If you are here because you are looking to learn tips on how to change your life, then you are in the right place. But if you want to learn to paint, or work on your car, or build that table, or learn a new language, you can make the decision in this very moment to change what you are doing and go learn that new thing.

Do you want to spend more time with your spouse, your kids, or anybody in particular? Go fucking do it!!

Seriously. I’m tired of letting life pass me by because I am not taking charge of every moment that I am living. I have been spending entirely WAY too much time watching TV every night with my husband instead of getting shit done that gets me closer to my goals. I don’t need a new year to finally start working towards those goals. I need this moment. This very moment that I’m sitting here and typing out this post. I turned off the TV and got busy writing. I found my topic that I felt passionate about and here you are reading it.

I don’t need a new year. You don’t need a new year. We get what feels like a million new moments every single day and it is our choice as to what we do with each one of those new moments. It doesn’t take much to change, it is actually really easy, but it does take change. Nothing will change if nothing changes. Nothing from this year to next year will change if you, yes you, don’t put forth the effort to enact change.

Stop waiting for a new year. Stop waiting for a new month or a new week. You keep letting new moments pass you by. Take the next moment, yes the very next moment, and get serious about the change you want in your life. Nobody can do it for you. This is all on you.

Making Fun of Me

Growing up I was made fun of for my clothes, my shoes, my hair, my home, my parents, my face, my glasses, my everything. I was continuously told everything that was wrong about me. Including being smart. It gave me a complex that I’m still working on today. There is a lot of baggage there that I have to unpack.

This baggage still creeps into my life today. Little things feel like big things. Little things like my husband giving my sarcastic crap about banging my hand on the corner of the counter as I walk by because I’m clumsy and it happens all the fucking time. We have been together for almost nine years and this isn’t the first time he has been sarcastic about it. But, this time and the time before it caused me to lose my shit.

I felt attacked. I felt like he was criticizing me. I felt like every time he acknowledges when I hurt myself, he is making fun of me. All of that emotion bubbled up and came out on him.

It isn’t unusual. Baggage builds up for years if it isn’t addressed. Then one day it explodes. And it probably explodes when you least expect it.

I took the approach of trying to understand why he continuously commented or pointed it out. He didn’t understand where my questioning was coming from since it has been “our well-known joke” for so many years. He couldn’t understand why all of a sudden I changed from joking about it with him to feeling attacked. We disagreed. Doors were slammed. Feelings were hurt.

He said he would stop. He said he would work on it but asked that I not expect an immediate change to an old behavior. He said he didn’t realize it was hurting my feelings. He didn’t understand the change in perspective.

Neither do I.

I don’t know that he should stop. Is this one of those things I should work on accepting? Is this one of those things that my baggage is causing more issues than necessary? Is this something I could actually lean into and have fun with?

Probably.

I should do the work, not him. It is an internal issue, not his issue. He is sarcastic by nature. I am sensitive and serious. Probably because I was made fun of. I probably got so serious because I was trying to avoid being made fun of. I got tired of getting picked on and feeling like shit. So I limited myself trying to become invisible to their comments.

Eddie isn’t making fun of me. He isn’t criticizing me. Eddie actually loves me and is a very sarcastic person. He is very easy-going. He is the complete opposite of me.

So what did I do?

After a few hours and during a walk with the dogs, I told him not to change. I told him I am going to work on my baggage issues. We talked about what might be causing my increased sensitivity to things that haven’t ever bothered me before. The discussion led to talking about other things I’m working on and through.

The lesson here? No matter how hard we work at unpacking our baggage, it may still creep back up into our daily life. Also, talk it out. You might not be able to talk it out right then, but cool off, journal or find a way to have some introspection, and then talk out whatever caused you to lose your shit. It doesn’t hurt to say sorry either. That is, sorry for losing your shit. Don’t apologize for being you and working through your baggage. Thankfully Eddie know’s I’m working on that and that I have to ponder on it. He just hopes I actually do ponder about it rather than just continuing to lose my shit on him.

Baggage may creep up, but we can work through. I can work through it.

Feeling Good in a Shitty Time

The last few weeks have not been normal, for any of us. Some of our lives have truly been negatively impacted. Some of our lives are just different enough that we feel the need to sit and complain all day. Some of us our simply lost with the new simplicity of life. The thing we can all agree on is that this is truly a shitty time.

The thing about this shitty time isn’t that it is affecting one person, one group of people, one class of people, or one nation. This shitty time is affecting the entire world. Hopefully by the time you are reading this post, things have started to improve. Hopefully life doesn’t feel as shitty.

But, as I am sitting here writing this, I know that none of us know how long this pandemic will go for. None of us know how long our lives are going to be affected.

As I am writing this, it is almost three weeks since I cut my last work trip short and came home. It is almost three weeks since my company killed all travel. It is less than that since we have had to redesign our main offering to assist the lives of seniors without ever setting foot in their home. It is only a few hours since the county that I’m in enacted a public health order putting legal ramifications on doing anything outside of the home that is not essential.

In the past three weeks, I thought I had this work from home thing down. I’ve been doing it off and on for years and didn’t think anything would really be that different for me.

I was wrong.

I didn’t typically shower or get ready (makeup and hair) when I worked from home. I would shower as needed (my dry skin truly thanked me) and keep my hair braided or something. I sure as hell didn’t put makeup on.

But, I just hadn’t been feeling myself. This working from home thing was different in this climate. Was it because Eddie was also working from home? Was it because I had absolutely no travel on the horizon? Why didn’t I feel myself?

I figured it out the day before writing this. When I used to work from home, I still would have this activity or that, or even meet up with people that “required” me to get “dressed”. I’ve had none of that. Even my grocery store trips don’t require a fully put together me.

So, to help improve my mood, my dedication, and my productiveness for work and my personal goals, I decided that I have to get ready every morning. I need to feel good about myself more often. Yes, getting ready does help me feel good about myself and there is nothing wrong with that.

I made the decision to get up at 4:00 am instead of 4:30 so I could have an extra 30 minutes to do my hair and makeup. As I am writing this, today is day 1 of this new schedule.

Here is to feeling good in a shitty time. Some times it is the little things that will get us through. Sometimes we just need a little makeup to go with our coffee.

How are you feeling good in this time of change?

I Am Me

I am me, regardless of my weight.

I am me, regardless of my salary.

I am me, regardless of my job.

I am me, regardless of who my immediate family is.

I am me and that is who I will be.

I am me and I am learning to be comfortable with who I am.

I have spent most of my life trying to be someone else. I was a chameleon trying to change who I was to fit who I was around and the situation I was in. I was never true to myself. I was changing and blending so much that I lost who I was.

I was lost. I have been lost since I was a teenager, probably even before. I was never truly myself. I knew deep down there was a picture of who I wanted to be, but that person was so far away, that I didn’t think I would ever actually be able to be her. I thought that person was someone who had to stay hidden so I could be what others wanted me to be.

I started drinking to fit in. I drank A LOT. I partied. I buried my introvert so deep she had no idea how to come back out.

I kept drinking and partying because I made friends that way. I made friends everywhere I went because I was free and happy and lively.

I made friends, but I didn’t truly connect with people. They let me in, but I kept everyone at an arm’s length, or farther. I wasn’t willing to let anybody see who I truly was or where I was from. I didn’t know who I was. I was ashamed of where I was from.

I wasn’t me.

I got tired. Everything I buried away started creeping in. I started feeling again. It sucked. I hated it and tried to drown my feelings with more partying. Except that didn’t work. I really wasn’t happy. I didn’t know who I was or what I truly wanted out of life.

Until I gave in. I started working on myself. I started working on the hell of my past. I started letting people in, just a little bit. I let Eddie in and he crushed every fucking wall. I was caught in this space of not knowing who I was and being this party girl who checked all the boxes depending on who I was with.

Then I leaned in farther. I explored the feelings. I found others like me. I started to learn who that person that I pictured could be. I started to see her more clearly until I finally invited her to be part of my life.

I never thought it would be possible to be comfortable in who I was or am. I have a lot of regrets in life and one of my biggest is not learning to truly be who I am earlier in life.

I still struggle to overcome the chameleon, but every day that I lean into me is another day that my love for myself grows. It started with a baby step, then another, then another, and another. Baby step after baby step brings me to who I am today.

I still have a lot of growing to do, but I can truly, confidently say I am me.

I am me and that is who I will be. I am for me. I am me.

I Will Never….

…be able to run again.

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Those were the first thoughts I had when I sat in my chair to do my Start Today journaling. My first thoughts were about what I don’t have and won’t have the rest of my life.

Most of us are wired like this. We are wired to see the negative in absolutely everything. It is more difficult to see anything positive. It’s as though our minds are wired for negativity.

We can change that. I changed that thought.

I changed my “I will never run again” thought to “I’m thankful I am able to walk without the pain I had.”

Changing your thoughts takes practice. I can honestly say I still have a long way to go with improving my thoughts, but the fact that I was compelled to immediately switch that thought this morning gave me all the feels.

I felt progress. I felt immense gratitude. I felt happy. I felt the love I’ve developed just for walking.

I may not be able to run again, but dammit, I can walk. I can walk more than 2,500 steps a day without feeling like wanting to rip my hips out. I can walk over 10,000 steps a day once again. I can schedule vacations and events that require walking and standing without worrying how I’m going to sit down the whole time.

I may not be able to run, but I can move my body. I am grateful for the improvement I have and grateful for being able to see the good over the negative.