Did you miss me?

Hey!

I’m back!

‘Old-school’ journal writing just wasn’t cutting it for me anymore, so after much deliberation- I’ve returned to try and entertain you as I shamelessly document the antics of my life on the internet once again.

It’s been a few months shy of 2 years since I left the blogging world and jeez, life has flown by. Like, crazy-scary time-warp-speed flown by. Let’s take some time to get re-acquainted again, shall we? I think some general life updates are in order before I endlessly spew my emotions out a few times a week on here…you know, just so you have a point of reference.

I’m assuming/hoping there will be some new readers to this blog and if that’s you- HI! Feel free to browse my past entries, they include lots of embarrassing and (I think) funny stories about all of the misadventures after my divorce. A couple of my favorites are this one and also this one.

Big Picture Items

  • Still live in Dallas, although now with a significant other and a fur-child (more on that in a minute)
  • About to turn freaking THIRTY in May- and no, I’m not looking forward to it and I’m slightly terrified
  • Lots of changes are happening currently, figured it’s as good a time as any to write about all of it, right?

Relationship Update

  • Still with the ginger from Tinder! (He may also be referred to within this blog as Matt/Matthew/boo thang/beard man/etc.) If you’re new around here and interested, you can read more about how our relationship started and the dating roller coaster in my previous entries, but we are just as happy as ever and recently added a dog to our little family! Welcome to your fur-ever home, Nessa!

photos

Work Life

  • I’ve been working in a major hospital system for the past two years on the administrative side in the Plastic Surgery department, but as of TODAY (woo!) I am now a Practice Administrator for a cognitive behavior therapy practice here just about a mile from our place. I’ll probably post more about this scary leap in the coming weeks as I start my new adventure on Monday. (Wish me luck!)

Healthy/Not-so-healthy life

  • Well, I’m not gonna deny it. I’ve let life take priority and in turn let my attempt at a ‘healthy food and plenty of exercise’ lifestyle fall to the wayside. I’ve definitely gained some weight back. Call it being happy, call it laziness…whatever- the point is, I’m not happy about it. I think part of me hopes that this blog will be a bit of an accountability partner, but mainly I just need to get off my ass and get moving again.
  • Anxiety is something I struggle with still on a daily basis. It’s not as unmanageable as it used to be, but I’m sure I’ll vent from time to time as it rears it’s ugly head. I’m looking forward to working in a mental health career field that I’m passionate about and growing to become a representative in the community. Mental health issues are real. It’s not something that’s attention-seeking, nor something that should be used to shame the people suffering from them. I’ve watched it affect so many loved ones in my life, and I’m determined to play a role in the destigmatization of the issue.

 

Well then, I think I’ve fully reintegrated all of you into where my life is currently. While others are counting down until their wedding, the birth of their child, or their next vacation…let’s begin my countdown to none of those celebratory reasons. Instead, I’ll be turning 30 in:

126 days
lord help me, I’m gonna be an old lady…

 

Now what?

Well, I did it. I survived an entire year living on my own. If you know anything about me, you should be impressed. This year flew by, while seeming to take an eternity to do so, if that makes sense at all. I can’t believe how much has happened, how much I’ve changed, and how different my life has become over the past 12 months. I moved out of my apartment on Sunday, and before I could leave cross the threshold out of my door for the last time I literally sat on the floor and cried. Yep, like a big ol’ baby.

I sat there thinking about all the emotions I had moving in: loneliness, heartache, hope for a new future, bitterness, and anger. I cried knowing I worked through all of those things within those four walls. I thought back about when I sat on my kitchen counter (yes, on top of it) and drank wine with friends while talking about how stupid and messed up our lives were. I remembered baking amazing desserts in that kitchen and then eating my feelings in the form of cupcakes/brownies/pie until I was sick. I laughed about all the slumber parties I had with friends in my tiny full-sized bed after too much drinking by my sweet pool.

I really lived in that apartment. Okay, that sounds so cheesy, but it’s actually true. I was a different person when I moved in, I changed my entire life over the course of a year, and I can’t believe that chapter is over. As I was leaving for the last time, it just all hit me at once and I broke down. Everything I was feeling a year ago is pretty much gone (in the best way possible). All of my anxiety, self-doubt, anger, etc. has melted away and I’ve become someone strong and ready to conquer the next chapter in my life, whatever it may be.

After I pulled it together and sniffled my way to the car, I climbed in and thought, “so, now what?”. New chapter, new year, new me…what could life possibly have in store for me next? Well, I’m all too aware that you can’t control your future, but I have a few things I’d like to tackle:

 

Find something to be passionate about. 

I had drinks with a good friend recently and we got on the subject of passion. Naturally, he asked me what I was passionate about. Oh, I know what you’re thinking: easy question! That’s what I thought, too. I proceeding with the following: I’m totally passionate about…you know, that thing…that I love. I do it all the time… how do I describe it, um. EXACTLY. I was so embarrassed when I realized I really can’t say that I have a passion. Sure, I enjoy a ton of things, but nothing really drives me to get up in the morning, nothing pushes me to be more creative, or compassionate, or try harder. Honestly, I think it’s been a fear of mine to throw my entire effort into something, for fear of failure or worse, mediocrity. This year I want to find my passion(s). I don’t know if it will be something as simple as baking, or maybe I’ll grow fond of gardening. Hell, I could go nuts and get addicted to sky-diving! …but I would like to survive the year, so I think I’ll hold back on that last idea.

Focus on relationships.

I’ve spent the past year being selfish. It was intentional, but it went against the core being of who I am. I needed to take the year for me and figure out who I was without a husband, dog, indentity as a wife, or the stigma of being divorced. I spent countless nights alone, specifically after having turned down plans with friends, just so I could contemplate my future and  all those other deep, introspective ideas. This year I want to push myself to invest in friendships, family relationships, and at some point, possibly, just maybe, really be able to pour into a romantic relationship. I’m not the only one going through rough times, and I want to be there for friends and family that were there for me over the past few months. In summary, less inward, more outward.

Try new things. As many as possible.

What can I say, I like to be comfortable. I know what restaurants I like, I know how I like my coffee, I know that I don’t like mushrooms. But I also know that I often take the easy way out and run away from things unknown to me. It’s easier to just say “I hate Mexican food” than actually try different kinds, or even worse, I might grow to like some of it! (The horror…I know.) Actually, over the past few months, I’ve grown to enjoy sushi (like real, raw sushi, lol). I’ve eaten guacamole more than once (and not hate it). I’ve listened to new kinds of music and found new artists to love. I’ve realized the more I branch out, the more life I’m experiencing…and it’s so much better this way. Being open to new experiences and the different things people enjoy, it makes relationships deeper, life brighter, and so much more fun. (Jeez…I’m just a blogger full of sappy one-liners tonight, hm?)

 

I’m really looking forward to this year, actually. I think it’s going to be just as challenging, but in an entirely different way. If I get really crazy, I’ll write another post soon about how many random things I acccomplished on my bucket list this past year…now that would show you how much of an adventure my life has become. Hah.

Adventures in Online Dating [Pt. 3]

Wow, I’m a week into 2015 and this year has been an adventure already! Between New Year’s, dating, friends, work, and just life in general, week one of this new year/new me is going pretty darn well.

Okay, so it’s also been kind of a mess, but that’s certainly expected in my life…it’s kind of who I am. The following summaries of my adventures are not my brightest moments… dumb decisions, embarrassing stories, and hilarious mistakes. But, this blog is about honesty, and sometimes honesty isn’t pretty, but it is real. I hope you all enjoy my messiness as much as I do, I’m starting to think it’s kind of awesome. 🙂

 

New Year’s Eve was amazing! Usually, I spend the holiday at home in sweats, trying to make it ‘till midnight so I can mumble “Happy New Year” to whoever is around- then immediately pass out. Well, I was determined to make this year count. It’s been my first single New Year’s in over 10 years, and I wanted to party! I had a cute little dress to wear, AND I actually felt pretty good in it (that’s new to me, so you have to realize that’s kind of a big deal!). Long story short: there were drinks, there was laughter, there was midnight, and then, I don’t really remember the rest…whoops (mistake #1). What matters though, is that I have incredible friends who took care of me and I made it back safely to my apartment the next morning with about five minutes to spare before my next engagement.  All I know is that a football game at Cowboys Stadium the next morning was a terrible, terrible idea to agree to (mistake #2). There was way too much cheering, yelling, bright lights, and smelly food. (It also should be noted, a stadium bathroom is pretty much the worst place to be sick…repeatedly.) Just picture me running past people in the stands trying to find the nearest place to safely well, you know. I felt like Kristen Wig in Bridesmaids on the airplane…you know the scene:

wiig

After surviving my first 24 hours of 2015, I decided to log onto the good ol’ dating site and check out who was interested in me (this choice will lead to mistake #3). I read an article that said your best chance of finding someone on a dating site is the first weekend after the New Year. Something about everyone fulfilling their New Year’s resolutions and trying to find someone to date, blah blah blah. So, I figured, why not look around?

Fast forward through several days of talking with a few guys, having some weird conversations…and a couple of nice ones as well, this guy (we will call him…Ryan) asked me out on a date. Yes! I know, a DATE! I played Queen’s We Are The Champions in my apartment, did a few Rocky style winning fist thrusts into the air, and finally said yes (this was mistake #3). After some back and forth banter on choosing a place to go, he offers to meet at Chili’s and gives me the intersection in Arlington. [Side note: for those of you who don’t already know, Chili’s is my all-time favorite place to eat. I have no idea why, I just love it. Their ranch….it’s amazing]. Anyway, I take this sign of him choosing my favorite place as a gift from the gods and now I’m even more excited. It’s meant to be, I think, how could this get any more perfect? I tell him I’ll meet him in 30 minutes and he confirms that he’ll be there.

Blame it on my excited-ness (or my lead-foot), but I arrived in only 20 minutes. Do I get out and wait in the restaurant? Do I wait outside? Do I get a table? Too many options, and, you see, I have this illegitimate fear that I will be ‘that girl’ having to repeated tell the waiter that my friend is on their way and to just give him 10 more minutes, while the ice melts in our drinks and they eventually take the opposite place setting away and leave me alone at the table, looking sad and well, alone. Dramatic, I know.  So, just as an FYI, I texted him that I was there early, waiting in my car, and to let me know when he got there since I was a little early.

No answer.

Hm, that’s a little weird, I thought to myself, but maybe he’s just really into safety and doesn’t text and drive. 20 minutes later, (which was about 8:40, ten minutes past our originally agreed upon meet up time) he answers my text with “little bit of traffic, sorry, are you as nervous as I am?”. Whew, he’s just stuck in traffic. And yes, my nerves are now a frazzled mess at this point. Remember, this is my first potential date in 10 years, and I have no idea how I’m going to do it.

30 minutes go by. Still no Ryan. So, naturally, I send him a text to make sure he didn’t get into a car accident or mauled by a roaming mountain lion on his way to our date. No answer.

I waited in the Chili’s parking lot, in my car, alone, until 10pm.

I did not get stood up. I did not get stood up! Did I just get stood up? Who stands someone up? What’s wrong with me, did I say something wrong? Did I get the location wrong? No…it says right here, I’m in the right place. Did I seriously, freaking, just get stood UP?

Yep, folks, I was stood up. That’s a first. What a wonderful way to get back into the dating world, huh? It was an emotional drive home to say the least…but I made it. Then I finished the jar of Nutella I hid in the back of my pantry for a bad day just like this one. Sometimes, I just love my good ideas. That jar of Nutella had all the answers I needed, not some stupid boy.

The next day, I woke up with a million questions. Did he get into an accident and couldn’t call? Did he even want to go out with me? Why put in several days’ worth of conversation just to stand a girl up? Was he just nervous? Should I even consider talking to him again? My mind was spinning. Ultimately, I decided to not text him and just let it go. Let it just become a good story about a first attempted date.

Then, that afternoon, this conversation happened:

IMG_2207

What. The. Hell. Now, I’m just pissed off. First, not even a sorry?! Second, I now know you’re an idiot because you gave me the exact intersection so there’s no way that we “ended up at different ones”. Third, you didn’t text me because you stood me up.  And I love the last text, his final words a couple hours later when he realized I wasn’t going to play his games. Did he really give ME attitude when he stood ME up? Asshole.

I felt like Cupid (or some evil twin version of that fat baby) just slapped me on the back and said, “Welcome to the world of dating! Have fun!” If I could have, I would have kicked that damn baby into 2026 and snapped every arrow in his quiver. If this is dating, I don’t want to be a part of it…where are my cats and fuzzy robe? Cats don’t stand people up.

But, it’s a new year! In 2015, I now choose to look at the bright side of this adventure: I have a great story to tell and my next first date can’t go worse!

At least, I’m hoping it can’t go worse…I’ll keep you posted.

A Year of Change

Is it me, or is the comma placement weird in this photo?

What a year! Highs and lows. Happiness and sadness. Lessons were learned, mistakes were made. Bridges were burned and new relationships were built. Every cliche in the book pretty much summed up my year. However, I did learn a few incredible things about myself during the past 12 hardest months of my life:

1. It’s okay to put yourself first. 

My whole life used to revolve around making others happy. While it’s true that I’m happiest when others are happy, I also lied to myself for several years about just how miserable I was on the inside. We’re all familiar with the saying “you can’t please everyone”, and I finally stopped trying to prove that statement wrong. 2014 was the first year I can remember that I made decisions that made me happy, and I didn’t care if others agreed or not. It’s such a freeing feeling, not being weighed down by others opinions or emotions. Who cares if you spend way too much money on granola bars or if you haven’t swept your apartment in months. No one, that’s who.

2. If you need help, ask for it. 

I used to be a firm believer in doing things myself and that asking for help was a sign of weakness. I’m not sure if it’s because I lost my mom so early, or some other reason that was imprinted on my brain as a wee one, but I had this crazy notion that I could never depend on anyone. “If you want something done right, do it yourself” was a common phrase in my life. Well, let’s just say in 2014, I needed some freaking help. And turns out, people came out of the woodwork with love, support, and anything else I needed before I even asked. It was amazing. I learned that it’s okay to cry on your best friend’s couch while drinking cheap wine and stuffing yourself cheesecake. And you know what else? They won’t judge you. They may drink some of your wine, but they won’t judge you. I realized that being open and honest about your heartache can lead to healing. Not only for you, but for others as well.

3. I am beautiful.

Okay, I know that sounds conceited, but I swear, that’s not how I mean it. A year ago, I would have never, ever, in a zillion years, considered writing that statement. Me? Beautiful? Hell to the no. Sure, I’m not magazine-cover pretty…I’ll never be blonde, 5’9′, size 2, with porcelain skin and baby blue eyes. But, honestly, I don’t want to be anymore. I like my look now. Freckles for days, bright green eyes, nerdy glasses, sassy bangs, and always great shoes. It doesn’t matter to me if no guy ever takes a second look in my direction, I don’t dress/act/look a certain way for them, I do it for me. I’ve lost 52 pounds (so far!) for me. I spent way too much money on a new little black dress that I feel amazing in (even though I have nowhere to wear it yet) for me. I’m getting a second tattoo for me. It feels good to be comfortable in my own skin. And it feels good to be confident. Boom.

4. Life is messy.

When my life “fell apart” earlier this year, I thought I would stick out like a sore thumb. I quickly realized that no one’s life is perfect. And even more so, if it appears perfect on the outside, chances are it’s a hot mess under that pretty facade. People are fake, lives are confusing, mistakes happen, honesty is rare, and those closest to you may fail you. I’ve come to realize that this is just how life is, just a normal fact. I don’t expect perfection in myself, why did I set others to that standard? I’m learning to love people for who they are, weaknesses, faults, and mistakes included. I can only hope that others do the same for me.

 

Of course I learned many more things this past year, but they all tend to fall into one of the categories above. After everything I’ve been through so far, I can gratefully say, “see ya later, 2014! You kicked my ass, but I think I gave you a run for your money!”.

And to 2015: bring. it. on!

 

Adventures in Online Dating [Pt. 2]

So, now that it’s been about a week with an online dating profile, I basically consider myself an expert in this field. (Please, note the sarcasm).

Annnnnd, I still have no idea what I’m doing. Haha, this whole experience has been very…entertaining? The messages I’m getting, people’s profile pictures, the pick up lines, it’s all so silly and exciting and terrifying all at once. At this point, I’m feeling like this whole idea is a big mess and just a way to be embarrassed on a daily basis.

Let’s start with this “summary of my life” I’m supposed to come up with on my profile. What the hell am I supposed to put in here? I hate beans? I can’t see over clothing racks? Honestly, I spent about 2 hours just stuck on this first part. I re-wrote it about 385,743 times and finally came up with a decent combination of wit, honesty, and…mystery? I don’t know how it turned out, but I’m just glad I finished it, squeezed my eyes shut, and clicked save.

The interesting thing about this website: they actually don’t have a place you can select ‘divorced’. The only options are dating, single, or married. (Weird, right? I still don’t know why you would actually put married as a label if you’re on a dating website, but who am I to judge…). So, my next challenge is: do I list that I’m divorced on my profile? I don’t know! Is it something I have to be up front about? Ugh, so many thoughts…but ultimately I decided not to add anything about it. I figure, if it comes up, I’ll be honest, otherwise I’ll just see what happens. That’s fair, right?

After I finished my profile, I didn’t really know what to do next. Wait for something? Look at other’s profiles? Message someone? I thought about all of those, and then just decided to close my computer and pretend I didn’t just put a ‘wanted’ ad out for my dating life. Soon enough though, instant technology availability got the best of me and I was checking my matches like a pro.

So, my first week of this adventure has been a roller coaster. I’ve had a few great conversations with guys, and several weird ones, too. I can safely say, the good guys are few and faaaaar between. The amount of inappropriate and/or vulgar messages I’m getting is ridiculous. I mean, do guys actually want a girl that responds to that kind of stuff? Sorry, but that’s not me. Even worse is when you think you’re talking to a normal, respectable guy, then he turns out to be worse than the others that are at least honest about their meat-headedness. And finally, just when you’re about to click the link to close your account – a decent guy messages you and it starts all over again. I guess this is the ‘joy’ of trying to date? Meh.

All the bad aside, it’s been a good experience for just having conversations and getting to know new people. I’ve been asked out on a few dates, but I’ve turned them down because I’m still just too nervous to actually meet anyone in person. Maybe I’ll save that for week 2? Yeah, I think that’s a good idea.  I need to come up with my game plan, escape routes, safety chaperone, and topics of conversation. Then, I’ll consider it. 🙂

Adventures in Online Dating [Pt. 1]

I have been fighting off this cold for almost a week now, and I think it’s safe to say…I lost. I only get sick once or twice a year, but when I do, look out. It’s all sniffles, coughing, runny nose, watery eyes, and the worst headache ever. (Such a beautiful picture right? I thought you’d enjoy it, and you’re welcome.)

When I woke up this morning and realized my nose was completely blocked and I sounded like Lindsey Lohan, I thought to myself, “I just need someone to go get me tissues. And tea, I’d love some tea.” But alas, I am once again reminded that I live alone. [Insert sad trombone sound effect here.]

Maybe you could blame my nose for the lack of oxygen being delivered to my brain, or, my desperate need for a tissue and some peppermint tea…but I decided to try something crazy.

Online dating.

Okay, okay… close all of your open mouths and stifle your laughter. We’re going to go slow here, I’m still not sure I even want to do this, or that I can do this. Right now I’m just thinking I may be stuck in this apartment (tissue-less) for the rest of my days and I won’t be able to meet anyone in public ever again due to this ailment I’m experiencing therefore online dating is now my only option. [Drama is apparently another side effect.]

Well, I have no idea where to start.

Second bright idea of the morning: I googled online dating. Okay, now you can release your laughter. I mean, since when has Google ever been beneficial? Pretty much the only thing I’ve actually learned from it is how to break into my garage with a credit card. Helpful? Yes. Also terrifying that I found that easily on the web? Yes. Anyway, the first few site results are the usuals: eharmony.com, match.com, okCupid.com, etc. Naturally, I start thinking to myself, “what makes this one or that one the best?” I mean, they all claim to be the #1 dating site…but I’m pretty sure it’s just about money, advertising, and oh, more money.

So, naturally, I click on the first link which happens to be eharmony. My plan is to just kind of look around the site, see what there is to do, etc. Oh, and how much does it cost? I’m not super committed to this whole idea of “online dating” yet, so I’m not about to drop any money before I decide it’s something I really want to torture myself with. Well, let me shorten this story by saying the one-month fee is… $59.95! Holy crap. Next, please.

So, instead of scrolling down the list of various websites, I altered my google search to “reviews of online dating sites”. After reading several articles/blog reviews/etc., I decided to try one of the free sites.

At first I thought that if the site was free, it basically just equaled a “hook up” site, but I don’t think that’s true (at least not yet). And that is certainly NOT my plan, let me just make that one CRYSTAL clear.

I’ve decided that I’m going to go with okcupid.com. I’ve read a lot of negative things, but I’ve also heard some good things and that it’s pretty easy to use. I’m just crossing my fingers and hoping that I don’t seriously regret my decision in the next 24 hours.

I figure there’s no harm in at least seeing what happens? I’m taking chances, right? Living life on the edge? Hopefully I’ll just be able to start a conversation or two, and see how it goes. It would take a lot to actually meet someone…but I’m not counting it out completely.

And don’t worry, I’ll be safe! No personal information will be revealed or social security numbers given out. (Unless they’re cute, of course.) 😉

I’ll be back with an update this week… I’m sure you can’t wait to hear all about how making my profile and any conversations go.

 

Eeeeeeek! Here goes nothing! (What the hell am I doing?!)

What A Girl Wants

My last post got me thinking that if I ever do start dating (…’if‘ being the key word there, still a little too scared to actually consider it, but that’s for another post.) Anyway, if I go on a date, do I even know what I’m looking for? What do I want in someone? What’s important to me? I mean, I know the basics: not crazy, not a murderer, etc. I realized I had just settled for so long with what I had in my marriage, that now it’s like the whole word is open and I have the freedom to choose…what a crazy thought, having choices?! Do I want someone type-A, creative, down-to-earth, life of the party, or quiet and mysterious? So many options…but I think I’ve narrowed it down to at least a few of the most important qualities I’d like to have in a relationship:

 

Funny – a great sense of humor is at the top of my list, for sure. I want to spend the rest of my life laughing with someone…when we are eighty, jammin’ out to the ‘oldies’ from the 2000s and still bustin’ out those crazy dance moves we learned when we were young, I want to be able to laugh at each other trying to break it down in the living room. Until one of us fractures a hip, then we’ll use our Life Alert necklaces and laugh/cry until EMS comes and takes us to the hospital.

I want someone who can find humor in the little things. I want to make fun of our kids and embarrass the crap out of them. I expect full-on prank wars in our house, and tickle fights that don’t stop until there are tears (from laughter, of course, I’m not evil).

And, let’s be honest, I’ve got a great laugh. It would be a shame not to make the most of it. 😉

Extrovert – I myself am not, I repeat, NOT an extrovert. I lack self-confidence most of the time, I like to stay home, read, and/or binge watch a new TV show as often as I can. If you see me at a party/wedding/social event, 99% of the time I’ll be in the kitchen cleaning or casually sitting off to the side enjoying my wine and people-watching. While I do enjoy my people-watching, I want someone in my life who will pull me out of my shell, drag me onto the dance floor, and make me do the macarena/electric slide/Thriller until my feet feel like they’re going to fall off.

I want to try new things. I want someone to make mistakes with, try amazing and/or horrible new foods, go to movies that are so bad they’re good, someone to join me on spontaneous road trips with awesome playlists on the way.

Passionate– I don’t care if he loves football so much we have to sit in freezing (or blazing hot) weather every Saturday to see his favorite team. Or, if we have to travel to every theme park in America to ride the best/most terrifying roller coasters. Having a hunger for life is so important to me.

Life is short, and I want to make the most of it. I want to find new passions, make huge goals and accomplish the most I can out of my life. Have someone there to help motivate and encourage couldn’t hurt, either!

 

Sure, there’s always other qualities that wouldn’t hurt to have around:

-being tall (I’m only 5’2″…I need someone who can reach the top shelf at the grocery store!)

-being able to cook breakfast (I am an excellent cook, just not bacon, eggs, or toast, it’s weird I know)

-being ‘punny’ (because a good pun always brightens my day without fail, and I need that in my life)

 

So, that’s that, I know you all were just dying to know what I’m looking for in a guy, but, this is my thinking place. I didn’t write this hoping some guy would read it, get shot in the butt by Cupid, and realize ‘he’s the one for me’, rather I just like to get these crazy thoughts out of my head and organize them into a post that makes me feel not so crazy. Hope you enjoy.  🙂