Nov 30, 2008

Time to start

I have always loved Christmas seems like the perfect time of the year. I love the lights, decorations, music, spirit...feels so festive. I have great memories or Christmas and almost none of them have to do with actually opening presents. One of my favorite is of my my aunts house on Christmas Eve. She had an amazing collection of Dickens Christmas Village on display. I would sit and stare for hours at all of the details, lights, movements...everything. It always felt like the perfect world to shrink to size and live forever. And every year I tell myself that I should start a collection of my own, but then the season passes and I have done nothing. The excuse is either money, time, space...but really I just had a certain dream of starting that tradition and I keep waiting.

So, on Friday I went shopping for Christmas decorations (new tree another post) on Friday with my friend and was telling her the story of my pretend village. We talked about trying to get into the spirit and be excited for this season to begin. Her solution...there's no time like the present. And like that...the search began for the perfect village. We drove all around town, asked questioned, scanned displays and finally I found it...the perfect collection. So I bought one piece and love it!

Now that the collection is started, I have to make it a tradition...every year I will add one piece to the collection. Small step but brought a bit of history to the present.

Nov 28, 2008


It's late and I'm sitting on the couch looking outside the window at the falling snow. The first real snow of the season. It looks so pretty, so crisp...almost peaceful. And yet too much peace and quiet often forces me to reflect on the past and my hopes and fears for the future. One year ago my life was very different...two years ago even more. And through all of the changes that I have encountered, I have learned so much about who I am and what I want.

I went to dinner tonight with a good friend of mine and she shared her journey of personal growth and how she has finally found who she is meant to really be and now is ready to get back out there and date. Actually, her words were more like..."it's time to complete my journey and find my life partner." Yet in the next breathe, she began to share with me her fears about sharing spaces and time, making compromises, loosing maybe not exactly 100% ready I would say. I know this sounds crazy, but I felt like maybe I could give her a bit of advice about trusting and putting herself out there that I have discovered through my own journey.

Years ago I was hurt to the core and my heart was shattered (I know that everybody can say that) and I promised myself that it would never happen again. I was going to avoid feelings...avoid love so that my heart could not be broken. I stayed out of a relationship for 10 years...dated a few times, a few random moments maybe, but not a real relationship for TEN years! Throughout those years, I had a list of things that I was unwilling to compromise on, items that I identified as a turn off in a partner and reasons why I wasn't meant to find love. But in the dark and silent moments alone, I would fantasize that love would sweep me off my feet and prove me wrong. I even made a dream list! All of the important traits I was looking for in a partner and I hid it in my hope chest (never to be shared with others). And then out of the blue love knocked on my door and I wanted to throw all of my fears and list of non-negotiables out the door and instead compromise on anything that would allow me to keep that feeling.

While that didn't work out for me, I did learn (although would have loved to avoided that lesson) so much about myself and things that I need to do differently. I learned that I didn't feel worthy of love and therefore didn't trust that it would stick. I supported ideas in the relationship that if were made, could do nothing but prove that I was meant to be alone and was not worth sticking with. I feared asking, hoping or maybe even begging for love or hoping to be chosen, because I didn't believe that I deserved that from anybody. Without realizing what I was doing, my actions or lack there of created my own perfect storm. Opening my heart, dreaming of a future and at the same time allowing my insecurities and fears to dictate my actions, expectations and advice.

So many things that I still need to work on...that I still need to do better, but I have learned a few new things. I have learned that it's okay to compromise, it's okay to want love, it's okay to want to help and support each other...that is all okay, not a sign of weakness. I have learned that I have to always say what I want and what's in my matter how scary the outcome might be. I have learned that trusting myself and believing that I am worthy, that I do deserve love is the only way that I'm ever going to get it in return. And I am working on the rest...

Not sure that any of my advice was helpful to my friend, but she acted like it did. At least now she is willing to consider a little compromise on her journey.

Nov 23, 2008

Never laughed so hard

Okay, so maybe I have laughed this hard before, but I can't remember the last time that I laughed so hard it hurt! But tonight I was relaxing on the couch and watching the amazing race...maybe that should be enough said. But just in case you don't watch this show I am telling you it was hilarious!!!!! Meet Dan and Andrew...they are two very smart (I think book smart) guys who appear to have zero common sense. Last week they forgot to take their shoes with them so they were forced to purchase new tennis shoes before finishing the race. But then tonight, they were in Moscow and had a task to work with the military. Just getting dressed was a difficult job for these two guys. But then the task required them to learn how to march (yep....they had to walk) oh yeah, they had to move their arms at the same time. This was the moment, I have never seen somebody who had ZERO coordination. Over and over again the guys tried to "walk" and they were told it was not correct and needed to start again. The men in the military were laughing hysterically and that made it even worse. Just writing this is difficult because I am still laughing!

Anybody see this funny!

Nov 21, 2008

Only you can pull that off

One of my best friends stopped by last night on his way home from a blind date. He called me before knocking on the door to make sure that I was home and I think maybe to make sure that nobody else would see him. So first came the knock, I opened the door...and there he stood with a full head of hair!

I forgot to mention that this friend is bald...but yet last night he had hair. After I was done rolling around on the floor, he explained to me that last weekend he found this wig and bought it and has proceeded to wear it almost everywhere. Almost meaning he doesn't wear it to work, but he did to the gym, grocery store, laundry mat, dinner with friends and now a blind date.

I can only tell you that I am still laughing and I love that something like this has brought him such joy. If Willard Scott can pull the occasion wig look can my friend.

Nov 20, 2008

Know what I want...

I want a family! I mean, I have a family with my parents, brother (even a sister-in-law), niece and everything after, I have great friends which I consider my family. I have Fred...he is my family. But I would love to add to that family and have my own family. I have been dreaming of babies for weeks. So if there was a doubt, my clock is getting louder.

I use to say that I would never be a single parent, but I know that is not true now. I can be a parent...even a single parent and believe that I have a lot of love to share. Being a single mother by choice means I have to be even more prepared than the average family. So I have read books about how to prepare myself, spoken with my benefits director at work to determine the best way to pay for daycare, identified daycare providers that would work best. My dad bought me a book about getting myself pregnant with a turkey baster (not really my exact plan) and my mom is entertaining the idea of babysitting once a week. As for my friends, everybody is excited about the idea of me getting pregnant or adopting a baby...

I would be lying if I said that there wasn't some fear in messing up the child as a single mother. But then I look around and know that there are great kids who come from all different types of homes. I work with kids every day and know that my desire is not about my need to "have somebody to call my own" but it is about wanting to share new and old experiences with a child. It's about giving love and support, structure and boundaries to a little person who can then grow into a unique individual ready to enter the world. It's about playing in the snow, cheering them during their activities, banging my head with concern of doing the "right"'s about being a parent and loving a child.

A family is what ever you make it to be. Today I share a house with the softest kitty in the world who makes me laugh out loud every single day. And eventually I will add to my am I having a baby today????? No! Just in case you thought I was hiding something big. But I want to have a family and I want to be a parent so one day I hope to share that experience with all of you.

Nov 19, 2008

Christmas threw-up...

right outside my office door! There are all women who work in the main office at work and each of them seem to have the elf gene! Every day for the past two weeks this Christmas season has been making it's way into display...radios tuned to holiday music, Christmas tree candles filling every corner with their scent and even small decorations starting to appear. And then as I returned to my office late this afternoon after what felt like a marathon meeting...there it stood! We have a 8 foot, white artificial Christmas tree already decorated with lights, the largest purple and white bow ever (school colors) on top, and random school stuff hanging from the tree. When I say random...I mean note pads, coffee cups with our logo, hall passes, even a foam finger once sold as a school fundraiser! I didn't have a camera tonight but I promise pictures will follow.

But what I really had to's not even Thanksgiving and I have to look at the craziest Christmas tree ever! Is it weird that I was almost inspired to put up my tree...almost that is!

Nov 16, 2008

T what???

My parents invited me over to their house for lunch this weekend...sweet. But then I got there and before I could sit down they each pulled out their new cell phones. "Okay, teach us how to text each other!" The three of us sat on the couch, the two of them wearing their cheaters and I was walking them through each step. Apparently, their new plan includes unlimited texting and I still am unclear why they need that feature. I asked the question, and my mom simply stated that they could write love notes to each other...or nag me via text instead of voicemail. Hmmm...funny! And then before my mom could finish her sentence my dad interjected with..."we can vote for Dancing with the Stars now!"

Oh that makes sense!

Nov 10, 2008

Endless surprises

I love LOVE! It's not really something that the average person who knows me would ever think...but I do love LOVE! I come from a long line of great relationships, not genetic just a pattern. In fact, both sets of grandparents were middle school sweethearts who married, raised children and stayed happy together. And while that is amazing, it's my parents who remind me that love is a beautiful thing. My parents grew up in the same town as small children. In fact, my grandparents were all friends (who grew up together in the same town they raised their children) and so my parents knew each other well. And then when my mom was in seventh grade she got a phone call from my dad (an eighth grader) asking if she wanted to be his girlfriend. And that was it...they have been together from that day forward.

I grew up envious of their friendship and love for each other. They had this love for each other that I prayed for as a child and maybe simply hope for as an adult. They are predictably loyal, faithful, honest and real and those are the exact traits that have been the glue to their relationship. My parents were in love at an early age and married as teenagers. My mom was 18 when she walked down the isle and gave birth to my brother just a few months later. I am a product of teenage parents who got caught up in passion and whose lives changed in a moment. They were told that their marriage would never survive and that it would be the biggest mistake of all. This Thanksgiving weekend my parents will be celebrating their 39th wedding anniversary. And throughout this 39 years my parents have struggled financially, grown up both physically and emotionally, raised children, built careers, expressed no regret ever for the decisions made and through it all maintained an unbreakable trust and love for each other.

This morning my mom called me to share her dad is taking her on a cruise (her life long dream) this Thanksgiving to celebrate. My dad who has often talked about having no interest in a cruise went out and researched, purchased tickets and surprised my mom with this gift to celebrate together. And in the middle of her excitement to share the news, she stopped and asked if it would be okay that they are gone for the holidays. And then in the next breathe said...I hope that it is okay because I can't wait to float away with your dad!

Thank you mom and made me love LOVE!

Nov 9, 2008

'Tis not the season

Halloween just passed and already the world is ready for Christmas. I have been known to start listing to Christmas music the day after Thanksgiving...but the day after Halloween? No! This weekend I went to the grocery store, plant store and other stores only to hear Christmas jingles. Not ready...just trying to get myself ready for Thanksgiving!

Nov 5, 2008

And now they are gone...

I wrote a couple of days ago about seeing leaves. That moment...she said exactly what I have felt from that precise moment. It was real, honest...raw and it brought me comfort. And then this morning my friends sent a link reminding me of how far we have to go. You can erase, you can change directions...but you can't really take away the clarity of leaves...

Nov 3, 2008

Who does it effect?

I see those commercials all the time...depression effects everybody! I am trained to identify depression, provide strategies to deal with depression but not actually be depressed. And yet I have finally accepted that depression has a tight grip on me.

It's hard to admit that fact to myself and even harder to admit that to others. I feel embarrassed about my weakness and have been thinking of myself as pathetic. I am not normally a depressed person. Hell, I have never been described as weak...and yet I have felt trapped almost powerless in a fog for some time now.

So I have been working on all of the strategies I know to work through this fog and come out on the other side. Therapy, exercise, staying busy, spending time with family and friends and getting lots of kisses from Fred. I have even been able to laugh at my random outbursts of tears to my trainer during sprint exercises, to the Blockbuster worker checking out my movies, even the strangers sitting next to me during my work conference. And through that all...I am at least able to smile knowing that they must be thinking my hormones are all over the place. If only it were that easy.

I am working on getting my confidence back. Feeling strong and healthy again, liking myself physically and mentally. Depression has a grip but I am determined to win! I am doing the I will get there. Depression makes you feel so isolated and I was hoping that by writing this I would feel less alone and maybe even let somebody else who might be feeling that way to know they aren't alone.

Nov 2, 2008

Inside my mind

I love the new Pink CD (Funhouse). I am a huge fan...the music, the look, personality...okay, so there might even be a crush. But her newest album is amazing and I actually felt like she was writing words from my mind or better yet, my heart. If you listen...number 1, 3 and 5 are the best (number 3 is really the best). Go out, get it and loved it up!