“It’s the friends you can call up at 4am that matter.”
– Marlene Dietrick
So, this morning, I pulled up my chair and my coffee and opened my reader to peruse the blogs that have been updated. I do this most mornings. Why would today be any different?
I met Debra via Twitter. I don’t even remember who followed whom first. But I found her to be engaging and honest and lovely. We hit it off and we became part of each other’s lives, as much as is possible when we live more than 1,200 miles apart.
For a long time, Debra and I spoke via Twitter, or on the phone, daily. We heard about each other’s successes and hardships. There were well-wishes and hugs being sent through the ether, back and forth as needed. We both knew that if a 4am call was needed, that would be okay too.
At the end of 2010, Debra made a trip out to meet me. I met her in person. And she was just as lovely as I had imagined. She did spend a good amount of time stalking a giant lobster while she was here, but even that was endearing.
At the start of 2011, we had both been through a fabulous class together. (I was only able to attend due to Debra’s generosity.) We both started 2011 full of the desire to make significant changes in how we approach life. Sadly, my desire waned and, while I did make some changes, I ended 2011 not too differently than how I ended 2010.
Debra, however, made lasting and wonderful changes. It was exciting to watch the change which was visible in the tone and content of her Tweets and blog posts. It is my opinion that in 2011, she became fully Debra last year. The changes she displays are profound and noticeable and inspirational.
So, what is my problem today?
This. This is my problem.
And before you say it, I *know* this post isn’t about me. The decisions she’s made aren’t about me in any way shape or form. They are decisions she’s made to continue her own growth and happiness and (jeepers, I hate this word) journey.
And all of that? I am applauding and cheering and I honestly cannot wait to see how it all turns out.
I couldn’t even leave an appropriate comment to that post. (Sorry, Debra.) And for a while, I couldn’t even figure out why.
And then I did.
Friendships are fragile things and require as much care
in handling as any other fragile and precious thing.
– Randolph S. Bourne
1,200+ miles is a long distance. For anyone.
Now that Debra is not on Twitter, I won’t see her smiling face in my timeline. I won’t see her smiling face on Facebook. I don’t really see the point of G+, so that’s not a big thing.
But the reason Debra’s post affected me this morning is that I am afraid. And a little envious. And afraid.
I am afraid that this friendship is going to end? I don’t know that that is the correct word. I think on some level we will always be friends. I think my fear is that we will become polite acquaintances. And that will make me sad. What makes me sadder is that if that *does* happen, it will be my fault.
Because I am a terrible friend. I am working on making that an invalid statement, but for now? It’s true. It stems from my own insecurities. It manifests in that I am rarely the one to reach out because, in my mind, the other person always has something better to do. The other person gets tired of always being the initiator. And understandably so. I would get sick of that too.
I have lost a lot of friends this way. Looking back, I know now that some of those people were not “friends” in the true sense of the word. But others were.
Reading Debra’s post affected me the way it did because I immediately went to that place of “I’m losing yet another friend! What is wrong with me??” In my self-centered mind, I immediately made it about me – how it would affect me, what that would mean to me. Rather than celebrating that Debra is now fully Debra, and that she is out there, actually LIVING life, I internalized it just like I always do.
This is where the envy comes in to play too. I see how far she has progressed since we first met, how happy she is, how many positive changes she has made, and I think: Why not me? When will it happen for me? Why can’t I have epiphanies like that?
I know the answers to those questions, by the way. Debra has put in the time, and the work, and the effort. I haven’t.
“Some friends come and go like a season. Others are arranged in our lives for good reason.”
Debra – this is to you.
I have watched you grow and change and become happy, over the past few years. I think you are amazing and an inspiration. Thank you for letting me be a part of your life. I don’t think this will be the end of our friendship, but too often, we never say thank you to our friends. Or even indicate the role they have played in our lives.
Thank you for your post. It shook me. It showed me how wonderful life can be when fully embraced. It showed me to not rely on cyber-friends exclusively.
Thank you. You have set such an exciting path for yourself. I cannot wait to see where you go, where you end up.
These are the feelings I am having.
I’m relatively new to this whole blogging thing. And anyone who stops by here can tell that I really have no idea what I’m doing! 😀
I would love for my blog to look nice, draw people in, and encourage them to stop by more often. Okay, it would help if I actually posted on a regular basis too, but I digress…
Anyhoo, a little event called BlogHer is happening very soon. The way I understand it is that it’s a convention of fabulous bloggers. They all get together and talk about their fabulous blogs, and how to make them better, and they party and get free stuff and meet each other and on and on. I’m really very jealous about the whole thing.
I haven’t been, and financially will likely not be able to go for many years. So I do BlogHerAtHome. (I think last year there was a HomeHer event too. Great fun!!)
I want to enter the BHAH giveaway! You can find details here.
Since the event is BlogHER, I was going to suggest drinks like Vaginal Secretions (SoCo, Lemonade, Squirt, lime juice, triple sec, margarita mix) or Titty-TwisterRita (Bacardi 151, Tropicana, lime juice, Sweet and sour, daiquiri mix, ice), but since I’m all classy up in here, and the ACTUAL BlogHer is being held in Sandy Eggo, I am submitting:
San Diego Seabreeze
1 oz Vodka
1/2 oz Raspberry schnapps
1/2 oz Blueberry schnapps
1/2 part OJ (the juice, not the killer)
1/2 part Pineapple juice
1 tsp Blackberry Brandy
All ingredients in a collins glass, cover, shake, serve, sip.
Sounds good, no?
Please pick me. 🙂
163 days ago, I broke my comfort zone. I don’t know what I was thinking of at the time, but it seemed then like a really good idea.
14 days from now, it will be done. My life will be forever changed, for good or bad. I think it will be for good, so that’s how I’m approaching it.
I had such high hopes and grand plans to get ready for this. I started a “Couch to 5K” program, since I HATE RUNNING. I knew it would be my least favorite portion, so I thought I would train most on that. Within a month, I had a beautiful squishy lump on my knee and couldn’t run. It was identified as runner’s knee and was followed by 2 months of PT. I will be walking the running portion.
I’m getting pretty good at the biking portion. For years, I said I was going to start riding my bike to work, since I live only 7 miles away from the Gas ‘n Sip. This gave me an excuse to actually do it. Of course, I am incredible at coming up with excuses to NOT ride, but so far, I have gotten more use from my bike this summer than I have in the past 10 years.
The swimming was the portion I was least worried about. However, putting on a wetsuit? YIKES! I decided that I would deal with it with the same attitude I deal with getting a massage – they have seen bodies FAR better and FAR worse than mine. And after I attended a swim clinic, that is so true! I’m fine.
I have 2 weeks to mentally prepare. I’ll get there.
And thanks to my extraordinarily generous friends (and some strangers) I have managed to raise almost $750 for breast cancer research. That was the main purpose of signing up. I’m very pleased about that fact.
Thank you for your support! I’ll let you know how it goes.
Do you know Chibijeebs? I don’t. Not really. I follow her on twitter, but I don’t know her. I’ve never met her in person, and, like most people I follow on twitter, likely never will. But I have such admiration for her, that sometimes it feels a little creepy, even to me.
She has no idea I’m writing this post. And since there are really only about 4 of you who actually read this blog, it’s probably a safe bet that she never will. However, I’m going to put a link to her blog, so she might. If so, HI CHIBI! *waves*
So why am I writing a slightly ooky post about some woman I have never met? I have a bit of a girl crush on her.
There. I said it.
I don’t even remember how I started following Chibijeebs on twitter. Someone recommended her to me, and for that, I am grateful. She is lovely. And delightful. And an inspiration to me. She posts links to empowering and uplifting articles. And she is never shy about being honest about herself.
After I got to know her on twitter, I started
stalking her reading her blog. Part of her blog is her story. And while I admit that I started reading her story with a morbid curiosity (sort of like those rubber-neckers on the highway, looking at an accident), I finished reading her story because it portrayed a woman of great strength and integrity and awareness. So many people in this world blame their upbringing for being horrible, destructive people. If you read Chibijeebs story, you will see that a bad childhood is NOT a reason for behaving badly.
stalk follow Chibijeebs on Pinterest. Many of the things she posts there I end up “liking” or repinning.
I’m pretty sure that if I were to meet Chibijeebs in person, I would like her immensely. I learn from almost everything she writes. I’m sure I would learn from her by being her friend.
I hope this isn’t too strange. As part of my year of KIND, I want to take the time to tell people good things. I do it in real life too. There is a house near my parents that recently changed owners. I know this because for the past year, we have been watching the transformation of the property from one of extraordinary disrepair to one that is clean, neat and beautifully landscaped.
One day, after visiting my parents, I was riding my bike home and saw the owner in the yard. I pulled in to tell her what a tremendous job she has done. We talked for a bit and then I went on my way. I hope that visit made her smile. Just as I hope this post lets Chibijeebs know that what she writes/posts makes a difference in someone else’s life.
Thank you, Chibijeebs.
Update: Okay, before I hit publish, I asked her if it would be okay. I don’t want invade anyone’s privacy or make them uncomfortable. So I have permission. *whew*
Oh hello! Yes, I’m here again so soon. The tea is fresh. Help yourself.
If you’ve spent any time here at all, you know that I am ridiculously hard on myself. My self-esteem hovers near non-existent. And generally speaking, I am lazy. I have posted before that I need to make a change and I get lonely, and blah blah blah… until even *I* am sick of myself.
Well, I also spend a lot of time trolling around on other people blogs and clicking links to things they like. By doing that, somehow, I had come across this. Over the summer, I even signed up for the 40-day cleanse. But, continuing a familiar pattern, I didn’t follow through because I wasn’t held accountable by anyone. (Not even myself.) And I hadn’t told anyone that I was doing it. Part of this website talks about the Inner Mean Girl Reform School. It’s a 10-week program to help you stop being so hard on yourself, enjoy your life, and to feel successful. BRILLIANT!!
Yeah, except, again, continuing a familiar pattern, I DON’T HAVE THE MONEY TO PAY FOR IT. GAH!!
I have a birth mark on my forehead that is usually not visible. It used to be when I was little, but very rarely now. It’s in the shape of an angel. When I was little, I thought it was to remind me that I have a guardian angel protecting me. But as the mark faded, I forgot about it. And I forgot about my angel. On Sunday, as I was getting ready for my weekly visit to my parents, she was back. My angel was back. She is still faint, but I could see her again. I wondered if she was back for a reason, but then set that aside and went on with my day.
I found out on Monday why my angel appeared again. She was reminding me that I do, in fact, have angels working for me.
How do I know this?
Monday evening, while sprawled on the sofa watching (very likely) another NCIS* repeat, I got a Tweet from an angel. She wanted to know if I would attend the Inner Mean Girl Reform School with her, as her guest. It would be her gift to me. (I would tell you who it is, but I’m not sure she wants that, so I will keep my angel’s real name a secret. Henceforth, she will be referred to as Angel.)
I immediately burst into tears. And almost fell off the couch. Here was this woman, whom I have never met IRL, offering to in essence GIVE ME MONEY TO CHANGE MY LIFE. What? Really?
WHO DOES THAT???
Angel and I have “known” each other only for about a year. We Tweet frequently. We have spoken on the phone occasionally. We have read each other’s blogs often. I wouldn’t say we know each other well, but evidently, Angel saw something in me that told her I am worth her time and money.
I. Was. Floored.
No one has ever done something like this for me before. And as anyone who knows me knows, I don’t typically accept things like this. From anyone. Sure. Buy me a coffee or a lunch once in a while, (and I will reciprocate), but this? Normally, it makes me uncomfortable.
This was different. I didn’t get that feeling of “Oh she just feels sorry for me” or whatever. I just knew that she sincerely wanted to give me this gift, that it made her happy to do so. And it felt right. I know that if I were a better money manager, this is something *I* would offer to do for someone, but I didn’t know I was worth it. (And someday? I will do this for someone. Pay it forward. It’s the right thing to do.)
So I said yes. And cried some more. (It’s what I do. Apparently.)
So, starting tonight, and for the next 10 weeks, I will be back in school. Reform school. What am I hoping to get out of it? I hope to be able to tell my Inner Mean Girl to STFU (nicely of course… *batting eyelashes innocently*). I want to stop hearing all the negative things that go on in my head. I want to find the motivation to get off of the couch and walk. I want to replace all the negative cuck (It’s a word. Shut up.) with positive stuff. And remind myself that I am worth it.
Part of this process is to solicit support from people. So, instead of hiding on my sofa, in front of the computer, here I am. Putting it out there. I am going to Reform School and will be making positive changes in my life. I am going to need your support. (Yes. I’m looking at you… and you.) I will slip up and I need you to call me out. (But kindly, please.) And I would like to share with you what I’m going through. I hope you will help me and accept me and support me. (And if you can, join me! Sign up, too!) (No, I didn’t get paid to say that…. le sigh.)
Anyway. That’s what is going on here. And in about a week, I get to meet Angel, in person, for the first time. She is coming to visit me! And I’m sure I’ll cry again.
Thank you, Angel, from the bottom of my heart. You have given me a gift that I can never repay. I hope I am worth it. And I hope I deserve it. And I look forward to going to Reform School with you.
*One of Tony’s lines has stuck with me. And I think it’s kind of appropriate here: If you always do what you always did, you will always get what you always got. If you want something different, you need to do different.
Who knew Tony DiNozzo could be so profound?
Oh, hello!! I’m just making coffee. Want some?
So, it seems that there is good news just popping up all over the place today! Not for me, yet, but as much as I hate to admit it, it’s not *always* about me. Apparently.
Tall dude at work got a new chair. Which may not seem like a big deal, but trust me, it is.
Mr. Russia sold an old iPhone for almost $200 – 1st generation. 4 years old. Holy cr@p!
Greg’s fiance got her new ring – the old one had much wrong with it (Thanks, Jared) so they had to get her a new one.
It’s possible that someone will be tendering his resignation here, in order to pursue what sounds like a very exciting new opportunity.
And one of my besties has a new gig that I can’t talk about, but it’s VERY exciting!!
And through it all, I’m celebrating with them. The best part for me – because I’ll make it about me if it kills me – is that where I normally would have a pang of jealousy and would think “When will it be *my* turn??”… That didn’t happen. I’m truly thrilled for each of these people and the wonderful events in their lives.
It’s so nice to hear the good stuff. There’s too much focus on the bad stuff in this world. So, today, I’m asking you to celebrate the good stuff – even the small things like a new chair. Let’s make the small wins more important for a while.
YAY for everyone!!!
Oh, hello! Come on in and have a taste of blueberry pie. But watch the stains on your teeth. I have extra toothbrushes for those who need them.
A quick hello to Mr. Farty! I think you commented for the first time. I will be honest – I SQUEEd when I saw your comment… including the fart. Welcome to my very neglected blog.
I haven’t been around much. Not for any major or catastrophic reason though. More as a function of the fact that I really didn’t think I had anything to say. And if *I* think I’m boring, I certainly don’t want to subject *you* to that. You’re welcome.
K2Kid and I went to see SATC2. Oh. Mah. Gah. If you haven’t seen it yet, and are thinking about it, or thinking about waiting to get it on DVD, don’t even bother. It was that bad. It was forced, and contrived, and it tried WAY to hard. The ladies have NOT aged well… or at least the cameras made it seem that way. Samantha is still slutty, Charlotte is still a goody-goody, Carrie is still nagging Big, and Miranda is still icky. This isn’t even a fun, rainy-day movie that you could pop in for something mindless. Save yourself $9 and 2 hours and watch the first one again. Or watch Mamma Mia. At least those two were fun. And mindless.
My seeming year of reading memoirs continues with “The Year We Disappeared” by Cylin Busby and John Busby. It’s the story of John and what happens to him and his family after he gets shot in the face on the way to work one night. He was a cop on Cape Cod. The chapters switch back and forth from John to Cylin, who is John’s daughter. She was 9 at the time this happened. Her chapters are written from the perspective of her 9-year-old self. His chapters are told from his perspective at that time. The shooting occurred in 1979. Overall, it was an interesting story and it read very fast. I would have liked to hear more about the wrong cops who failed to properly investigate, but I guess that might be another story. I’d give it 7 out of 10.
I was going to do a post about how this year I have decided to embrace my “girliness”. You know, more dresses, matching unmentionables, high heels, better makeup, blah blah blah. But then the week that causes me to HATE being a girl happened and blew that out the window. Maybe another time.
I have been participating in an online class workshop exercise something that is meant to encourage participants to take more time to rest and play and generally enjoy life. The purpose is to be kinder to yourself and ultimately get more out of your life. What have I learned so far? I have no idea how to play.
What else….. I don’t know. I guess that is it for…. OH!
I’ve been thinking about NaNoWriMo. I only found out about it last year in the last week of October, so I had no time to prepare. It’s a writing event, designed to encourage free writing of quantity over quality. 50,000 words in 30 days with no editing. It’s a wonderful way to stretch your creative muscles and write a novel in a month. I signed up last year and only made it to about 15,000 words. And what started out as a “novel”, with a “plot line”, devolved into more of an online journal. And it was BAD!
So I’ve been thinking about it for this year. And I thought I would start to develop an outline or at least characters on which to build a story. Yeah. I think any writing creativity has left the building. I know I should “write what I know” but if I am to base a story on my life? SNOOZE FEST!!! I will likely be skipping the even this year. But I will be there cheering on others who I know are participating!!
Okay. That’s it. I’m done. Have a lovely day.
Oh, hello!! Come in and have some seltzer and Greek yogurt.
This post is about what happened later in the day last Thursday. It’s big for me.
So, a while back, the exquisite Debra wrote this post. What does that have to do with me, you wonder? Well, Miss Debra and I are very similar in that we are hermits, love books, and are less than experts at meeting new people. (Debra is FAR nicer than I am, but that’s another post…)
Inspired by my friend, I researched things in *my* area to meet new people and maybe make new friends. I found two groups that interested me. One was a group of women who get together for dinner or hiking or whatever. The other group is co-ed and meet for the same reasons. The co-ed group is NOT a dating group. But I signed up for both thinking that the women’s group would be a good way to get started, with no pressure to date any one. Then, maybe as I get more comfortable, I can do the co-ed group.
It must have been destiny all around, because the first meet-up of the women’s group that I saw was for dinner out at a sushi place. I heart sushi! So, I RSVP’d for the dinner and made the K2Kid RSVP with me. Because OF COURSE I couldn’t go alone. *eye roll* She was going to be my security blanket, just in case these women were horrible.
By Thursday afternoon, I was so tired from the volunteering that I wanted nothing more than to just go home and chill. But… I knew this was a good thing for me to do. I sent K2Kid a text to see if she was still going with me. She bailed. But 1) she had a good excuse; and 2) it was like the mama kicking the baby out of the nest. I had to do this on my own.
At dinner, there were 6 strangers. There was a real-estate agent, a nurse, a hairdresser, a fitness instructor, an executive recruiter, and … dang. I can’t think of what the last lady did. We ate. We talked. We laughed. We told stories. And we tried to decide what a good next meet-up would be.
And, do you know what? I didn’t die. I didn’t melt. I didn’t sit in my house, by myself, thinking that I *ought* to have been doing something. I am so glad that I did it. And while it may not be a big deal for many people, it was a huge deal for me, and I am so proud of myself.
The best part? I’m looking forward to doing it again. YAY ME!
Oh, hello! Come in. I made a full Irish breakfast for you today.
I just got back from Girls’ Weekend. What a blast!! But that’s not what I want to vent about today.
While I was away, I noticed something about myself that I don’t really like very much, so I want to change it.
At breakfast one morning, I was watching someone who was reading the Specials Board. She was complaining that something was “gross” and she couldn’t possibly eat it and she needed a menu instead. Whatever it was, it was something that she hadn’t tried before; yet she was sure it was gross and she wouldn’t like it and she couldn’t understand how anyone else could eat it.
So, full of righteous indignation, I turned to the K2Kid, with whom I was eating breakfast, and got myself all whipped up about what a jerk this girl was and why doesn’t she just try it and isn’t she just ridiculous.
Then I stopped.
And I caught what I was actually saying.
And I came to the realization that I was taking on the Judgey McJudgerson role. What the hell do I care if she doesn’t want to try something? How is her decision to NOT try something, in any way, shape or form, impacting me or my life, at all? Just because I am willing to try new things doesn’t make me better or worse (or anything else) than anyONE else. They like what they like and good for them.
I don’t like this superiority trait in myself. *I’m* the one who gets all whipped up. *I’m* the one who gets agita. *I’m* the only one who is negatively affected. The person, or situation, that I am judging, goes on about their business, happy as a lark, and none the wiser to my judgement. Who the hell do I think I am? There are SO MANY things about me that are available for judgement by others. Why don’t I focus on those things first? Get my own house in order, so to speak.
I asked the K2Kid to help me with this. I asked her to point out to me when I started to go off. There were a few times I caught myself before I went off. There were a few times she had to say to me “It doesn’t affect you” so that I would stop. It was eye-opening to me. And suitably humbling.
Change is hard.
Learning a new lesson is hard.
But I’m learning. It’s hard, but I’m learning.
Oh, hello! Come on in and have some tea.
So I’ve written about Meg and Ali here a couple of times. And I am going to write about them again today. I swear I should be getting paid for this. Or something. (I’m looking at you Mr. Meg…)
I work with Mr. Meg, and his wife and her friend started the company. You can read about that part of it on the website. I had written a post about how great their shirts were, with the complaint that the shirts are made for teeny people. Seriously, an extra-large fits a size 10? WTF?
Since I shared that thought in a post, and with Mr. Meg, the info got filtered back to the ladies, and they researched new vendors – because big girls need peace signs too!! And guess what?? We can now buy these shirts!!! WOOHOO!!
They had an open house at their shop last night, and Mr. Meg “encouraged me to go. I hadn’t been to the shop, nor had I met Meg or Ali before. So before I gushed about them again, I wanted to see how things work. I put on my M&A hat, and went to see where the magic happened.
Turns out, the magic doesn’t happen at their shop any more. The good news is that they have grown to such a point that they have “people” for manufacture. (YAY!) I found out that while they still pick the fabric, local folks do the sewing and cutting, etc. So hooray to Meg and Ali for employing people close to home. It seems that it’s really quite a process to get these beautiful shirts made. The quality reflects that.
There are new products too. Don’t bother looking at the website for them yet. Their webmaster has yet to update that… (still looking at you, Mr. Meg. *stinkeye*) But look:
I have a green one. It’s soft and really comfortable. Another new product is:
The little leather piece that holds the ribbon between your toes is made locally too! YAY for local cows!!
There are belts too. And aprons. AND! When you buy something? They put it into a cloth bag. No plastic. Totally reusable. YAY for going green! (I tried to get a picture of that this morning too, but at 6:30 in the morning, in the semi-darkness, fighting off cats? Not so much.) (I bought a shirt. Coincidentally, it looks just like the one I put in the original post – brown with the blue peace sign.) (Yes, I had to pay for it…) (I KNOW!!)
OH! And about Meg and Ali, personally? ADORABLE!! But do you remember back in high school, there were those really pretty, thin, friendly girls who you REALLY wanted to hate, but couldn’t? Because they were nice and sweet and kind? So you just had to stand back in awe of them for their fabulousness? That’s Meg and Ali. They are petite, gorgeous, thin, friendly, and quite honestly, I find it a little annoying and not just a little unfair. No one should be able to have that much YAY going for them. Just kidding, ladies. You are wonderful. I wouldn’t keep going on about it if it weren’t true. Ask Mr. Meg. He’ll tell you.
Anyhoo. If you haven’t gone to the website, please stop by and check things out. I’ll keep on Mr. Meg to update the inventory list on the site (*stinkeye*) so that you can see.
I’m sorry to keep posting about Meg and Ali. But to see a local business succeed? It gives me hope for the future. And if I have even a teeny part in helping them? That’s great too.