Days 9 and 10: Soccer Moms, Fireball and Headgear

Today’s celebration and wins have been combined into a weekend post. Admittedly, I was a little too inebriated last night to write, but also, I needed the lights out in our hotel room for my girls to go to sleep.

This weekend marked one of the most dreaded soccer tournaments of the year. Partly because of the 2 and 1/2 hour drive, but mostly because it took place in Pueblo, CO. Pardon my language and offense to any Puebloians, but that place is a real s@#t-hole. The first weekend of March can be a miserable time of year for an outdoor soccer tournament, but we were at least lucky on the weather front..the scenery and atmosphere left little to be desired.

My first celebration has to do with the incredible fun and slightly too much drinking   with the other soccer moms. This group of warrior women often get a bad wrap, and perhaps, some represent the stereotype with ease. However, I feel so blessed to have ended up with the most amazing group of moms on my daughter’s soccer team. It may be more like 4 or 5 out of 17, but when we get together, let’s just say the liquor over-floweth, as do the belly laughs.

It was the first night in a very long time that I was not only social, but I felt like me again. I really hadn’t been out in many months and have barely had a drink in…well, I can’t remember how long. So when the wine and the fireball came out, we let loose. It felt amazing to finally resurface from behind my more recent gloomy disposition. I think it’s safe to say that my radiance is breaking through my hardened shield.

We all celebrated my recent graduate school admittance, and as the night wore on, I felt open and unfiltered. There was no need to put up walls or suppress my true self. It was an evening of true women, with all sorts of stretch marks, comfy, non-stylish clothes, and bags under our eyes. We all wore our battle scars with honor and pride, and celebrated with true joy and revelry for no other reason than the fact that we were all together in a crappy town for the weekend, and our beds were just an elevator ride away.

On our long drive home, we made a pit stop at the orthodontist (who happens to be my ex-father-in-law). The last part of the celebration is more in honor of my daughter, but it is also a huge relief for me. She was finally told that her headgear could find a new home in the trash. We have spent many bedtime battles over this annoying piece of torture and she has shed many tears about having to wear it. Thank the Gods that we can put those days behind us. It was a great relief and perfect ending to a fun, but long and exhausting weekend.

With Love,

Anatheia, proud soccer mom

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Day 8: Saving Waking Beauty, Spilled Coffee, and Domain Transfers

Today was a little bit of a rough day emotionally and I was thinking that my biggest celebration was most likely going to be dumping half a cup of coffee out that I really wanted, but knew it would make my stomach hurt and possibly make my cramps worse. Ok, so although this is a smaller scale win, the purpose of this “adventure” is to celebrate all things big and small. And quite frankly, considering my menacing coffee addition, that was pretty painful for me. You know the saying “don’t cry over spilled milk?” Let’s just say that I have cried plenty over spilled coffee (especially when it’s in my car).
The other win that I feel super proud of is taking on the tech world and winning. Html scares me, as does most of the world of websites, domains, name servers and so many other terms I wish I could pay someone to deal with. But right now, it’s just not in the budget. I’ve had to learn on my own, and wow has it been a HUGE learning curve!
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Anyway, I managed  screwed up this very blog by transferring the domain to host that contains my business sites.  All I was trying to do was streamline and keep all of my domains in one place. However, what I was completely naive to was the fact that transferring the data was a whole other animal, and very quickly realized that I could no longer pull up the website.
Normally this wouldn’t have been such a big deal, but I truly wanted to continue my commitment to blog every win for these three weeks, and the hosting company said it would cost $150 to fix (definitely not in the budget). A long drawn-out techie battle ensued over several hours, causing much frustration and angst. However, after several online chats and a few sleuthing moves, I was able to resurrect my little baby and it didn’t cost a dime! I figured it out on my own. For me, this is a huge win and accomplishment. Even if no one is reading this, I made a 21 day commitment and I’ll be damned if it something like transferring a domain is what derails me!
With love,
Anatheia
P.S. I’m also celebrating getting this written now and not as I’m dozing off to sleep!

Day 7: Joy, Radiance and Blogging

Today I am celebrating finding joy and radiance for 1 week straight–and of course blogging. There have been several nights where I just wanted to go to bed and do it in the morning. But I already am starting to feel better with this experiment and so proud to stick to my commitment of self-care and self-love.

Have a beautiful weekend.

With love,

Anatheia

Day 6: Playing Hooky, Jamba Juice and Awesome Mom-ing

Today I am celebrating teaching my kids fabulous lessons and at the same time, opening them up for deeper learning, by allowing them to make their own choices.

To start with, my 13-year-old…Last night she was close to tears around 10:30, in exhaustion, with still more homework to finish. I cut her off and pointed out the fact that her brain was done for the night, and it was better to get to bed and wake up early to finish up. She woke up this morning even more exhausted and overwhelmed, so I gave her the choice to miss school and get caught up on rest and homework.

Some parents (i.e. her father) might be a bit judge-y about this decision. However, I think it taught her a valuable lesson in self-care. Now granted, this daughter hates to miss school and is overly responsible, therefore I didn’t feel like she was taking advantage of the situation. I probably wouldn’t have given this same offer to her younger sister, who has faked some of the finest ailments in her ten years on this planet.

My teen felt tremendous amounts of guilt and shame for essentially playing hooky. I assured her this was actually a thoughtful decision in the sense that she needed to give her body and emotions a day of rest and this can sometimes be the most responsible thing a person can do. And if she didn’t rest, she could end up a whole lot worse and miss even more school- my personal favorite, “It just hurts, everywhere!”

Although she spent several hours on the couch watching TV, she wrote a beautiful paper, emailed all of her teachers to catch up on missed work, and  finished her day refreshed, caught-up and ready to finish out the week. I feel proud as a mom to impart this wisdom on my beautiful daughter at such a young age.

My younger daughter’s lesson wasn’t as dramatic, but perhaps for her personality, just as important. Today she was given the gift of trust and independence.  After school she asked for three dollars, which she promised to pay back, and if she and her girlfriend could ride their bikes to Jamba Juice and split a large smoothie. Of course when I was this age, it was pretty much a given that we would ride our bikes all over town. Sad to say, but times have changed and this was a huge step for her.

It was the furthest she had ever been on her bike, without adult accompaniment, and ordering and paying on her own was new as well. She was concerned that they wouldn’t take her money, because she was too young. I assured her that the teenager working the counter at Jamba Juice couldn’t care less about her age. Upon returning, she felt proud, self-assured and most importantly, a sense of accomplishment. And I didn’t even worry about her the entire time (a gold star earned for mom).

It is so easy as a mom, to get caught up in the hustle and bustle of life and want to shelter our children. Sometimes we forget that we are raising young women (and men) and preparing them for the real world, which will sadly be here before we know it. I am proud to help these two amazing human beings take another step in their growth and development.

Today I feel like an awesome mom!

With Love,

Anatheia

Day 5: Resumé Writing, Free Pizza and Grad School

Today I have a huge, huge, huge celebration/win, and smaller, but still worth mentioning, win. The latter win was motivating myself to attended a resumé writing workshop during my lunch break at school. I was supposed to hear of my acceptance or rejection to graduate school today, and figured that I should start the plan of job hunting, yet again, just in case I wasn’t accepted.

I have been in limbo for far too long and decided that maybe I could spruce up my resumé, at the very least. It was challenging to sit through a lecture by a woman who seemed to be a bit behind the times, not only with her hair style and make-up, but her online application knowledge. Although I probably could have taught the class, I was glad I went. And as a bonus, the free pizza was tasty.

Now, onto the triple-huge win…Three hours later, I received a call from the dean of admissions telling me I was accepted!!!!!! I have been working my butt off trying to find a job for a year, and then applying to this program in addition. It feels so fucking (pardon my cussing) good to have something definite for the fall- a place to land!

I knew that starting this gratitude journey would help me cope with the possibility of rejection, and even though I am ecstatic, I’m sticking to it!
With Love,
Anatheia
P.S. And hooray for the first day of March!

Day 4: Yoga, Back Spasms and Skipping School

While today was another celebration of self-care, it happened in opposing ways. It started off with dragging my ass to yoga after my 3-hour class this morning. I really didn’t want to go, and would have much rather gone home to eat lunch and possibly take a nap.

I went anyway.

And this time, instead of judging myself in the mirror, I found a spot with a beautiful view of the mountains and nowhere near a place where my reflection would distract me.

After class I was able to go home and eat, and eventually rest for a bit. I was glad I gave myself the opportunity to move my body and then the reward of some relaxation time.

Later that evening my back began to spasm a bit, an issue I’ve been dealing with for the last week. I made the decision to care for myself again and skipped my evening class. At first I felt the twinge of guilt seep in, but was able to recognize that sitting in a class for 3 hours was not going to help the situation.

Staying home and resting my back allowed for a pleasant evening. Instead of cramming food in my mouth, while frantically trying to get out the door, and feed the girls some semblance of a balanced meal, we sat down and savored our food. I also enjoyed time reading, albeit it was catching up on homework, while my daughters worked on theirs.  Again, I was able to slow down and skip the chaos of leaving a 10 and 13 year-old home to fend for them selves- eat, do homework, wash up and be in bed by the time I return. Ha!

As I sit in bed writing this, still heating my back, I appreciate not having to continue chaos until late into the night. I still may be up for awhile as my teen finishes her math, but at least I know that I took the best care I could of my body today…and that is a win worth celebrating.

With Love,

Anatheia

Day 3: Unplugged

Today I am celebrating unplugging from my phone for an hour on my walk with the pooch. I know this doesn’t seem like a big deal, but usually I listen to a class, podcast, music or whatever. It is almost like a numbing distraction. I left my cell phonephone on the table and embarked on a beautiful walk through the neighborhood and onto the open space trails. Without the technological distraction, I noticed all the sites and sounds of nature that I normally miss. I was completely present in the moment and felt the warm sun in a healing way- a small but wonderful win.

 

With Love,

Anatheia

Day 2: Workshops, Co-Parenting and Blue Toenails

Today I shocked myself as my fear of not having anything to celebrate was quickly replaced by having too much to celebrate, and only being able to pick one.  I found myself looking for the positive in everything that happened, just so I’d have something to write about. What a transition from yesterday and my somewhat depressing post! Maybe it was the fact that the sun was shining and it hit 70 degrees, or maybe it was the fact that it was the first Saturday that wasn’t jam-packed with events. Whatever it was, today was a great day.
I decided that all of my wins fall under that category of self-care. So here they are:
  • Had coffee in bed and listened to a coaching call that happened on Dec. 31, 2015. Yes, it was two months late, but it was actually perfect timing
  • Took the pooch on an early morning walk

    The Pooch

    This is the look I get everyday when I put shoes on

  • Had a great day co-parenting and collaborating with my ex. at my 10-year-old’s soccer game, and then a little more later in the day
  • Did all my Costco shopping on a Saturday (this is unheard of for me)
  • Listened to two more course calls/workshops that I have been putting off for the past two months (I am officially caught up)
  • Had a my first and very successful virtual feng shui/coaching call with a client and helped her in a tremendous way
  • Took an epsom salt bath at 3 PM
  • Went on another walk with the pooch
  • Lovingly emptied the dishwasher
  • Painted my toenails blue and shut out the inner mean girl when I struggled to reach my toes
  • Blogged today’s wins.
It is now 6:53 PM, and I haven’t turned the TV on once. I may in a little bit, but it will be to watch one or two of my guilty pleasure shows and that’s ok. I will get a good night’s sleep and enjoy tomorrow with more self-care and celebrations.
With Love,
Anatheia

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Day 1: Depression, Chocolate, Yoga and Maltipoos

As I sit down at my computer tonight, I realize that I have drifted away from my main purpose of this blog. I originally set out to chronicle my journey not only as a healing process for me, but to share my vulnerability with others and remind you that it’s ok to not be ok. What has resulted is  months of paralyzing perfectionism. Writing became a chore, because I didn’t want to post anything that was less than stellar. And of course there were the images…Every post needs to have amazing copyright-free images. Believe me, this process is even more time consuming than Facebook. Then there’s the editing, re-editing and editing some more.

So tonight, I am taking a stand against my true Virgo nature and saying fuck it! The truth is I have hit a pretty low point in my depression and I am sick of feeling stuck in a dark hole. This may not be my best writing and there may be errors, but if I don’t start writing again or doing things differently, nothing will change. In fact, I’m writing this straight on WordPress and not as a safe document in Word or Pages. I will tap into my new love of photography and use my own photos or none at all. No copyright issues there. I release my perfectionism…well, for now anyway.

To catch up on my 40th year thus far:  While I have maintained my celibacy and isolation from men, I have secluded myself from other forms of fun and joy in addition. I have disconnected from friends who seemed unhealthy (which isn’t a bad thing), but at the same time have completely cut myself off from the social world. My search for a job has been met with many rejections in a variety of fields. I have been officially looking for work for a year now, with way too many versions of my resume and cover letters to count.

Food has become my numbing agent and the gym is but a distant memory. I’ve gone back to school 3/4 time to work on prerequisites for a graduate program, which I’m waiting on pins and needles to hear my fate of acceptance or rejection, and am working on a coaching program. In my spare moments, I am running kids to sports and school, dealing with teen drama and binge watching Gilmore Girls on Netflix while I step away for more chocolate intermissions than I would care to admit.

My depression has taken such ahold of me, that I have not only gained over 20 pounds, but I am lethargic, out of shape and mopey. This is not who I am. This is not what I want to model for my girls. I feel so out of touch with myself that it only makes me want to eat more chocolate. To make things worse, I am supposed to travel to Mexico with my uber weight-judgey family in 5 weeks and cram my plumper self into a bathing suit. Sigh…

As I sat on the floor trying to motivate to do something today, my incredibly sweet, fluffy and healing Maltipoo sat beside me and gave me a knowing look. She gazed at me with unconditional loving eyes and jumped up to lick my face. She didn’t care that I was overweight. She didn’t care that I have gone into serious debt or am unemployed. She saw me for love and love alone, my true essence. If she could see me this way, why can’t I? I dragged my ass up, got dressed and went to yoga for the first time in many, many moons.

I’m not going to lie, it was hard. My overweight body argued with every pose, feeling more awkward than ever. I had to constantly reign in the mean girl thoughts every time I looked in the mirror (they should really cover mirrors in yoga) and winced at this unrecognizable body. I had to constantly remind myself to be gentle when I couldn’t even hold poses or get into them comfortably. Something I’m not used to.

After all of this internal struggle, I left class feeling refreshed. Today I made the choice to leave the house and chose movement instead of napping or eating or shaming myself. And although it will take some time to feel good in my body again, I took the first step today, and that is huge.

As the day wore on, I still battled with 3pm exhaustion and emotional eating. I gave myself permission to be ok with that, and am fully aware that the one baby step of going to yoga is monumental.

And so it is that I have decided to embark on a 21-day Bringing-Myself-Back-to-Radiance Adventure. I decided to not call it a challenge, because the word challenge itself is just that, too challenging- a sure-fire set up for failure.  And why 21 days, you might ask? I don’t know, it seems to work for Deepak and Oprah. Oh and I guess there’s that whole 21 days to change a habit thing. Let’s face it- it just sounds good.

Each day I am celebrating one thing about my day and sharing it here. If I try to change everything at once, I will fail, backslide and the shame spiral will continue. If I only do something active once everyday this week, that is a start. The food can come later and I’m ok with that.

If you have ever been in this situation, I would love to hear your success stories in the comments. I would love to hear your failures. I want to hear it all and celebrate you too. This is such a challenge for women and we need to support each other in community. Being raw, vulnerable and real is my gift to me.  And so I share my adventure here- unfiltered and only re-read once for editing.

With Love,

Anatheia