Random Saturdays – Am I an adult?

I think I’m an adult.  As far as my age goes, I’ve been an adult for awhile.  I’m relatively mature and responsible, I guess.  I’ve never felt like I was doing adulty things until recently.  All I ever talk about nowadays is work, the house, and the kids.  I’m so friggin’ adult now and it’s really weird.

Worse than that, I’m an old adult.  My mother-in-law recently had eye surgery and was telling us about all of these treatments she has to use for her eyes and for scars and whatnot.  I have to use those same things just so I can see and so that my skin doesn’t fall off of my face.  I get injured anytime I do anything, and I do mean anything.  I pulled a leg muscle walking around the couch.  A few weeks before that, I pulled the same muscle while walking upstairs.  WALKING!!!  I mean, come on!  I’m always tired and I’m always in pain.  I peek through the blinds when I hear people outside, trying to figure out if they’re messing with my lawn or the mailbox.  I am forgetful and easily confused.  I complain about anyone under the age of 35 who doesn’t have the exact same pop culture knowledge as I do.  I am an old, crotchety, and sickly adult.  I’m grateful that there’s an old folks home at the end of our street.  Ben and the kids have already promised to visit me when they have to admit me to the place in the next 10 years.  They’re so sweet!

Right now, my priorities include not screwing up at work, house training the puppy, working with the puppy on her food aggression, and unpacking the house.

Work – Ugh, work.  It’s killing my soul.  I hate my job so much right now.  Most everyone there does.  The company is just making some terrible decisions that are causing us all to work more for terrible results.  I need a new job, but I have too many other things going on right now.  There will be another round of layoffs before the end of the year, so my schedule might allow for some job searching soon enough.

House Training – She’s a puppy.  She’s about 4 months old.  She’s gotten so much better, but is scared of the new doggie door that we had to install after she broke the first one. Ahem  We’re still trying to get her not to pee out of excitement or submission the first time she sees you each day.

Food Aggression – My god.  She had shown no signs of food aggression other than gobbling her food down so quickly that she often chokes.  As a test, I stuck my hand in the puppy’s food bowl while she was eating, which you should be able to do if your dog has no food aggression.  She started with a growl and it just escalated from there.  The second day, she went absolutely nuts – biting, jumping, and scratching me.  Ben confirmed that she’s more aggressive with me than him.  I’ve read up on it and am going to try some behavioral training.  If there’s no improvement after a couple of months, we might need to consult an expert.  I don’t want to have to worry about the kids looking at her the wrong way while she’s eating and getting their faces chewed off because of some ingrained primal dog instinct.

Unpacking – Yes, we’re still unpacking.  Ben has been focused on getting our internet, cable, and electricity specified to our needs.  I’m focused on setting up the rest of the house.  Between work, injuries, and the Texas heat, I’m usually too exhausted or in too much pain to do much.  We did get the entryway halfway done this weekend.  So, that was pretty exciting.  I wanted to get it set up before the kids went back to school.  You can see my entryway inspirations on my Pinterest page.  I’ll post some photos once it’s all done.

Yeah, so that’s what I’ve been up to.  I also weigh more than I ever have in my life because I bounce between eating nothing and eating everything depending on my levels of stress, exhaustion, and tummy troubles.  The doctor told me she wants me to lose 10 lbs before my next check up.  I told her that I had too many other things to focus on right now and would deal with my weight later.  She told me again to lose 10 lbs before my next check up.  *sigh*  At least my blood pressure is great, right?  The little things do matter!

Random Saturdays – Begin at The End

I’ve been a bit M.I.A. lately, at least as far as this blog is concerned.  Between crazy work stuff, being sick, being depressed, the holidays, Ben, ice storms, and get-togethers with friends that I don’t see often, everything else has been on the back burner.  Having said that, I did want to get at least one real post up before the end of the year.  My one-year blogging anniversary is December 21, 2013, so, I decided to do a sort of year in review post since I’m ending the year in a completely different place in life from where I started in January.

At the beginning of this year, I had a bunch of projects that I wanted to do.  I tried to plan things out and block off my time.  The only things I really did were keep up the blog and learn how to use Inkscape.  I also managed to get into a workout routine until I moved last summer and paid more attention to my daily habits — everything from calorie counting to how often I get headaches and migraines.  It didn’t really help me get healthier, but I did lose weight.

After I started dating Ben, I gained 7 lbs.  I had just started getting back into working out after my summer move, but that stopped, too.  I started slacking on the blog.  I fell behind on email.  I haven’t been reading books or magazines much, either.  I’ve been sick twice in the past two months and think that I’m getting sick again.  In general, it seems like dating Ben did away with the little bit of progress on my goals that I had made, but that’s not really true at all.

Even with tracking my health issues, I wasn’t able to make any improvements in my health before Ben.  Now, I’m paying more attention to how all of my health issues are tied together because they directly affect my emotional and mental well-being, which directly affects Ben and his kids.  Since it’s not just me, my cat, and the t.v., I have more motivation to do something about things that I know need improvement.

When you’re alone and you get sick, it’s easy to just wallow in your self-pity and give up on trying to improve anything.  When I feel like this around Ben and see how worried he gets about me, or when I have to hide from his kids in the bedroom because I don’t want them to see me depressed and get it into their young minds that being mean to yourself is a normal way to think and act, then it suddenly seems more important that I get my crap together.  Granted, I realize that I’ll have to struggle with depression my whole life.  I realize that I can’t change myself overnight.  I realize that when I get sick, things in my body will be thrown off and cause depression on a physiological level that I will just have to learn to handle.

However, I’m trying to be mindful of all of the small things that I still have control over when I’m sick and/or depressed.  When I’m sick, I’m trying to make more of an effort to shake myself out of depression because it directly affects my loved ones.  I’ve always known this, and it’s always been motivating, but Ben and his kids are motivation on a whole different level.  I had no idea that someone like Ben could even exist.  He is a nicer, smarter, better (but not funnier) version of me.  His kids are wonderful – fun, affectionate, smart, and always concerned about how much money I spend on gas and rent.  I don’t want to teach the kids how to hate themselves and I don’t want Ben to have to deal with me hating myself if it can be prevented.  So, even though my projects were all put on the back burner for the last three months of the year, it’s all been for the best.

Furthermore (<- smart word), I’m going to Paris with Cathy for Christmas and New Year’s, a trip that I planned before I started dating Ben.  Since my plane ticket and rental cost of the apartment in Paris are non-refundable, I’m going to suffer through missing Christmas with Ben and his kids and force myself to go to Paris with one of my best friends.  (I’m only half-joking.)  I tell you what, though.  On January 1, 2013, I did not anticipate having a boyfriend with three kids or going to Paris for Christmas.  You never know where life will take you, but you just have to get out of your own way and enjoy what life brings to your table.  I’m trying to be mindful of how lucky I am for my life so that I can fully enjoy the time I spend with my friends and family this year.

I hope you stay mindful this holiday season, too, absorbing all of the joy and love shared between you, your friends, and your family.

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

Exploring Your Depths – Make Do

Exploring Your Depths — Make Do.

Cathy’s blog today is about making the most of your situation, no matter what it is.  She reminds us that “perfect” is usually a fictional and, therefore, unattainable goal.  Making do with what you haven’t isn’t about suffering or half-assing things;  it’s about making the most out of what you have.

Just this morning, I read an article in O magazine about how to workout regularly even when you hate exercise (the web article has a different, and less compelling, title though).  The key is to set your sights low, to set manageable goals.  I haven’t  been able to get back into a regular workout routine since I hurt my knees awhile back.  I know that I can’t work out for longer than 20 minutes a day (even walking around the mall or Target for an hour starts to hurt my feet, knees, and/or hips and I often get headaches).  If I work out particularly hard one day, it can take days to recover instead of my old customary one-day recovery period.  Finding that balance of working out and not over doing it has been difficult, since it’s not the same ratio that it was just three years ago.  Lately, I’ve been disappointed because I can’t seem to commit  to working out regularly.  However, I have managed to do a number of mini-workouts throughout the day (yoga stretches and a strength move or two when I wake up, a 3-minute workout after dinner while watching TV, more yoga/pilates moves to stretch/relieve the day’s tensions before bed).  Granted, the pounds haven’t been melting off, so I still feel like a lazy loser, even though I feel better physically (less joint and back pain).  Why is it so hard for me to do all of these things in a 20-minute interval though?  What is my problem?!

When I read the magazine article this morning, I found it interesting that the writer started with 10 minutes of working out and that there are actually benefits to that because I always feel like a slacker even if I reach my 20-minute goal, which seems like a pretty pathetic goal anyhow.  Then, I read Cathy’s post, which reenforced the idea that even if my mini-workouts are all that I can manage right now, that’s fine.  I’m making do, and that’s good enough.  If I’m able to eventually amp up my workouts and stick with a regular workout routine without getting frustrated by a combo of injuries, laziness, and lack of sleep, then good.  The mini-workouts are fine too though because I am able to keep up with them daily and the health benefits are fully evident even if the waistline benefits aren’t there.  So maybe the combo of the magazine article and Cathy’s post is the universe’s way of telling me that making do isn’t such a bad thing afterall.