Tuesday, October 29, 2013

To My Future Children.....

Hi dear children,

If you ever come across this, you will hold this as proof that your mom.... the same mom that you think is boring and too uptight.... once got very, very drunk. Your mom who is always reminding you of how alcoholism runs in the family and how you do not have to drink to have fun.....  once was THAT girl who had to be half-carried out of an amphitheater after a Luke Bryan concert

See, I'm not exactly proud of this fact, but I accept that it happens and it was totally my choice. I knew in my head it was a stupid thing to do and I did it anyway. I... who ALWAYS knew when to cut myself off and how to sober myself up with bread and water.... didn't. 

I hope that it makes me a little more relatable.

Yes, I was 30 before this happened. Yes, I am swearing that it will never happen again. Yes, I realize that I was right when I said that throwing up is just not worth it.

But, I'm still hoping that, if nothing else, this one experience will help me help you.

Here are some absolute truths..........

- I was 30 and was legally able to purchase the (insert #) alcoholic beverages that I did. If you are not 21, then nothing I am saying here applies. The law is the law. I followed it and so should you.

- It will be fun. In fact, it will probably be more fun than you have ever had.

- The crappy week you've had? The boss that made work hell? The boy or girl that broke your heart? All of the above? You will 100% forget them with all the fun you are having.

- Then, eventually, you will take that one drink that pushes it into "not fun." If you are anything like your mom, you will then start crying and going on about all the sadness you are feeling.

- The concert will end and your friends/family will have to figure out how to get you out of your seat and to the car. They will hopefully think ahead to the ride home and prepare for the inevitable sick that you are going to be.

- Remember the Teacups at Disney? How you liked to spin as fast as I could make it go? How by the end of the two minute ride, you were ready for it to end even though it was our favorite ride? Now, think about that and imagine spinning at full speed for the entire hour long car ride home. That is what it will feel like. It will feel like death.

- Once the car stops, those same people that got you in will have to figure out how to get you out and into the house. They will pat your back and try to make your drink water and make sure you are breathing. They will somehow be comforted by the fact that you probably got rid of all the stuff in your stomach.

- Then, you will wake up the next day. Not feeling great.... but, if you are like your mom, not really feeling hungover. Just tired and worn out.

- You will realize when you wake up that you had fun before that last drink. That you really did. That you survived it and probably would still be considered a bore by some standards.

And, here are the most important truths........

You will realize that NO one person or thing is worth feeling as bad as you did when the bad came. No job. No boss. No boy. No girl. No friend. None of them are worth it.

You will realize that the bad is still there, but it is a little less important. It doesn't consume you and it doesn't define you. Yes, you still have to deal with the bad, but after spending a night feeling like death, it really isn't so bad to deal with the bad, anymore. 

You will pick yourself up, dust yourself off, and chalk it up to a really bad month/week/day that has ended, never to be relived. You will realize who loves you and supports you.... and that they are the ones you should be focusing on.

Tuesday, October 22, 2013


..... is kicking my butt, right now.

Like, I'm having a really hard time dealing with one blow after another. 

There is a lot of good. I'm trying to focus on the good. I'm trying to live in the good.

But, I can't say that the bad isn't weighing me down. 

Yesterday, I had several of important talks. A lot of them revolved around my greatest insecurity..... That I will never be enough. That the day will not come where a man looks at me and says, "YOU are exactly what I want and have been waiting for."

It's what I fear the most. 

Yesterday, I stood in front of a man that I greatly care about... that I want something with. And, I listened to him tell me how wonderful I was.... How much I mean to him.... How he can't count on one hand how many people in this world he cares about as much as he cares about me.... How I'm sweet and funny and thoughtful and driven and I have a great family.... and, how he didn't want me. He wants me in his life. He can't see his life without me in it, but he wants to try life with someone else (even though he freely admits that he loves, but isn't in love, with this woman and he has no intention of ever marrying her). I'm just not enough for him.

And, as he told me all about this other woman's insecurities and why he has to make allowances for them, I listened to him list off these things that I've experienced in my own life. These happenings that "make her" so afraid and untrusting..... I've actually experienced myself. I told him that. I also told him that he didn't see me putting him or anyone else on trial for those things. I told him that what was happening in this very instance was exactly what I was the most insecure about.

It was extremely tough, to say the least.

 About a year ago, I was in a similar state of mind. Granted, right now is worse because I'm getting it from several angles. Regardless, I was in this state of mind.

A friend.... who oddly was only in my life for a few short months.... said to me, "You need to know that if no one chooses you for the rest of your life. If you aren't picked as the best friend. If you aren't picked for a job. If you aren't picked as the love. If you go the rest of your life not being chosen, remember that God CHOSE YOU! He chose to bring you into this world. He knew that there was something unique and special about you.... something no one else in the world would ever have. He chose to die for you. He. Chose. You."

A couple friends over the past few weeks have made the point that even though I was in a good place this summer, maybe I wasn't in the place God wanted me to be in. Work is an ongoing question, but on the TG and FD front, I was "ok." They were in the picture, but in the background of it. I wasn't thinking about them, but they were still there. They were books on the shelf.

These friends have suggested that maybe God wanted them out, for good. That maybe God is burning those books, so to speak, to allow for some room on the shelf. That maybe it is time that I completely shut those doors and nail them shut. And, maybe something beyond my wildest dreams will be around the corner.

Or, not. Maybe there isn't something better around the corner, but I am trying to take steps to get them out of my life, as much as possible.

TG is actually pretty easy. He isn't here.

FD is a lot tougher. We work together. And, his exact words were, "You are going to have to tell me how to handle this, because I don't know how to proceed. We've done the avoidance thing and it never feels right. It doesn't feel right to not be friends." So, if I want him out of my life, *I* have to be the one that makes it happen.

This really, really sucks. I hope the better comes soon.

Tuesday, October 15, 2013


I am a week behind on the 31 Days. #31DayFail

Maybe I will catch up and maybe I won't. We will see.


Men suck. Especially the men that I have given nicknames to on this blog. They both suck and I'm pretty sure I want them out of my life.

I *think* for real, this time.


I haven't done anything resembling exercise since my ten mile run.

In fact, today, I pushed 'snooze' for TWO HOURS.

That's right. I was too lazy to get up and I was also too lazy to reset my alarm.


Part of me thinks I may be a little on the depressed side. Not full on doom and gloom, but definitely bluesy.

I'm trying to come out of it, but it feels like hits just keep coming and I am trying to roll with them.


Unrelated, but convenient to, the past few weeks of debacle..... I'm dyeing my hair this afternoon. For the first time ever. I've gotten highlights about once every 6-8 months for the past ten years, but I've never fully colored my hair.

While I have been planning this since July (truly, I have had this appointment since July), the actual happening couldn't have been better planned.

I need a change. Let's start with my hair.


Sunday night, I went to dinner with Billie Jo's family at Chef Mickey's. Afterward, we were able to watch the Magic Kingdom fireworks on top of Bay Lake (connected to The Contemporary.... part of Disney Vacation Club). It was fun and magical....

Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Lesson #8 - You Can Do ANYTHING (including run 10 miles).... If You Work For It

*** This is both a lesson and a recap. While the recap part is mainly for my own memories, I promise there is a lesson at the end.

Let me tell you about myself about 9 years ago. I was in college, my stepfather had just passed away about 6 months earlier, and I was spiraling into a continual darkness. I was 100 lbs heavier than I am now. I still danced, but was not fit or healthy.

Eventually, I woke up and started working to a healthier existence. A couple years ago, I started the Couch 2 5K. I did it and then fell off the running. Then Summer 2012, I started again and actually did really well. I got to the point that I could run for 45 minutes. Then, I stopped.

Well, around March, I picked it back up again. And, I got the wild idea to sign up for a 10 Mile Run. I really don't know WHY I got that idea, but I did and I convinced my sister Megan to sign up, as well. Shortly after, she suggested we sign up for a 5K series during the summer. We trained and practiced and completed the series. Then, we kept training. Honestly, I didn't train as hard as I should have, but the Florida Summer got to me. Regardless, I did keep running and preparing for October 5th.

It came, alright.

Megan, my mom, and I headed to Orlando. We picked up our race packets and checked into the hotel.......

Then, we waited. It seemed like for-ev-er. I tried to nap, but that was a no go. I did manage to eat.

Finally, it was time to get ready and head toward the buses for the race!!!

"Does this tutu make my butt look big?"

I cannot explain the energy on that bus ride. Everyone was excited, nervous, and buzzing with energy.

Momma and I on the bus!......

If I thought the bus ride was exciting, getting OFF the bus and walking towards the pre-party and race start was multiplied. There were thousands of people in the parking lot of Hollywood Studios. A DJ, music blaring, light up balloons.... it was insane. The most entertaining part was all the runner costumes. Oh, the creativity......

Like this guy..... 

He was part of an entire ensemble of Star Wars characters.

I had a couple friends that were also running. We tried to meet up, but with so many people using cells, reception was non-existent. We spent a couple of hours just walking around and trying to stay calm. And, my mom took tons of pictures.....

Eventually, it was time for us to get into our corral. Since neither of us had proof of times, we were in the last two corrals.... I moved back to Megan's, so we could start together. Everyone had to line up at 9:15. The race started at 10pm. Our corral wasn't scheduled to start until 10:28.

In essence, I felt like I was going to throw up for over an hour.

Here is us faking being calm, cool, and collected.

FINALLY, it was our turn to start. Towards the Start Line, we were able to see my mom holding up signs for us and her phone. She had my cousin on Facetime, so she could see us, too!! Honestly, that is what calmed us down and got us really excited. The loud music, the lights, fog, DJ, and MC helped, too.

Something I loved is that Disney gives a grand start to each corral. With the scary "Twilight Zone" music and a firework start, we were off!! Our route looked like this.....

While Megan and I started together, we knew that we wold be running by ourselves. She has a faster pace than I do and we each run to music. Despite the official website claiming that they do not recommend earbuds, most racers do wear them. The warnings and announcements are LOUD. Even with my music going, I could hear the important stuff.

A couple notes about the course..... it is mostly on main roads. At first, it is kind of cool to realize that you are running where you normally drive at Disney World, but it gets a bit boring. They do have entertainment and characters along the way (I didn't stand in line for any of them), but mainly you are just running.

It was HOT and HUMID. Not as bad as what we dealt with in July and August, but still pretty nasty. I made sure to take all of my walk breaks and to drink plenty of fluids at each water station.

My least favorite part was the dirt path you take right before entering Wide World of Sports. While the character stations they had were really cool, the path was dark and narrow. You would have three or four people walking shoulder-to-shoulder (rude), so you'd have to go off the path to run around them. Plus, all the dirt being kicked up was irritating.

When we did get to Wide World of Sports, I thought I would never get out of there. It was like reliving my worst PE days, all over again, lol. We ran onto the soccer fields, went around the track, ran on sidewalks, and then went around the baseball field before heading out.

As you can see, as we exited the complex, we hit the Mile 7 Marker (btw, the mile markers were awesome.... a running clock with an elevator theme), that was when I started having true doubts about myself. This was the conversation I was having with myself, in my head.....

"Yay!!! Mile 7..... Almost there!!!!"

"Only 3 more miles! 3 miles is normal to you. You got this!"

"Holy cow, I have THREE miles to go...... It's after midnight and I still have three miles to go."

"It is so hot. I'm so tired."

"What if I just walk the rest of the way? That wouldn't be so bad, right?"

"Where is more water? I'm so thirsty."


 "I don't think I can do this."

"Just keep running. Just keep running until you fall down."

"If I pass out, will I still get a medal?"

"WHERE is the water station?"

"Don't stop. Just keep running."

About the 7.5 mile mark, a cool breeze came. Out of nowhere. All around me, people were exclaiming over the cool breeze. I said out loud, "Thank you, Jesus. I needed this."

Now, I won't say that I didn't struggle the rest of the way, but it gave me a push that I desperately needed to keep going.

Eventually, we got back to Hollywood Studios. The last mile and a half was actually in the park. As awesome as it was, it was also a little bit of a mind game. See, I know that park like the back of my hand. I know exactly how to get from Lights, Motors, Action to Tower of Terror..... the best, most direct route. Yeah, they don't take you that way. You weave in and out, taking the most indirect way possible. When we rounded the Sorcerer's Hat, there was a big crowd cheering and a DJ congratulating us..... we only had a half a mile left.

That may have been the longest half mile EVER. The volunteers that were cheering us along were amazing, especially that last half mile. They knew we were hot, tired, and just ready to quit.

When I saw the finish line? I booked it as hard and as fast as I could. I totally crossed the finish line with both arms pumped over my head in victory. My mom was there to take a picture and cheer me on.

After you finish, you still have about another mile to walk to get the freebies, cool down, and get your bag before getting to meet up with your family.

This was my view when I finished..... A moment I will never forget......

The very first thing they hand you is cool towels. Then, you get in line to have one of the ten or so people handing out medals put one over your neck. Just like in the Olympics. When the lady told me, "Congratulations. You did it!" I almost cried.

I called my sister who I knew had already finished (we signed up for each other's updates, so my phone dinged when she hit the 5K, 10K, and Finish). She had just gotten my update and was able to tell me my time before I even knew it, lol. She was waiting past the bag claim with our friend BJ.

In that walk, they hand you a ton of freebies. My hands were full. I got my bag and happened to run into my friends.... we patted each other on the back and then I met up with my mom, Megan, and BJ.

My mom had these shirts made for us, while she was waiting. She was SOOOO proud of us....

They had an onsite engraver. It cost $20, but I felt is was well worth it.

I will keep this thing forever......


They had an after-party and we stayed until about 3:45am. It was exhausting, but the whole night was so exhilerating.

Two proud sisters......

11300 people registered..... 9474 actually came and finished.... My overall placement was 4233. Out of 6132 women, I finished 2349.

I ran ten miles in 2 hours and 8 minutes. 


My FB status the next morning read, "I did it!!!!! If you ever had PE with me, then you will know that ME running ten miles is basically a miracle."

People said (and still are) how proud they were.... how impressed.... how they could never do it.

I'm soooooo proud of myself and my accomplishment. And, I'm soooooo thankful for their compliments.

Here's the thing though.... They *can* do it. Again, I once weighed 100 lbs more than I do now. I've struggled my whole life with running. I was always last.... always the slowest.... always the awkward, clumsy kid that no one wanted on their team.

And, *I* placed ahead of over half of the 9474 people that participated.

If I can do it, anyone can. Maybe not today, maybe not tomorrow..... but eventually.

I've been running off and on for two years. I've been training (and not as seriously as I should have been) for 6 months. I worked for it and I did it.

You can, too.

Keep in mind, I still don't like running. I don't consider myself a runner. I do it because it is a challenge and because it pushes me completely out of my comfort zone.  

If running isn't your thing (trust me, it's not my thing, either) or you have no desire to do it, that's fine. But, don't say you can't. You can. You can do anything that you are willing to work hard enough for. If it is humanly possible, you can do it.

Will you do it as well as the next person? Maybe not, but you can still do it.

That is my lesson. It's something that I learned in a big way this past weekend. 

A couple of notes, if anyone is interested in running this race.........

  • I would recommend staying on Disney property. It is a LATE night and not only is travel shorter when you are on property, but you don't have to worry about driving.
  • Definitely jog to your own music, even though they say not to. There are boring stretches.... it's dark.... it's long...... unless you are planning to chat with a friend while walking briskly, music is needed.
  • Warning.... you are going up and down a lot of ramps to get on the highway. So, not only are there hills (more than this native Floridian is used to), they are curving and slanted. Like a NASCAR race. Except you are trying to run it.
  • It may be October, but chances are pretty high that it will still be hot and humid in Florida. I am used to this weather and I was feeling it. I would guess that the majority of the people I saw being carried away by medics at the end of the race were because of heat exhaustion/dehydration. My body/habits are able to adapt. I know what to do. However, I noticed so many people skipping right past the water stations. I would grab a cup of Powerade at the front of the station, walk, swig, and then grab a cup of water to do the same thing. Every. single. time. Yes, I felt a little yucky with that much liquid in my stomach a couple times. I did feel like I was going to get sick a couple of times. But, I just slowed down until I stopped feeling so water logged. When it was over, I drank both the bottle of Powerade and the bottle of water they handed us within the hour. Probably within 45 minutes. I kept drinking throughout the night. You have to do that when you are running 10 miles in Florida.
  • It is an expensive race. It's Disney, after all. However, it is also worth every penny. 
  • If you have any questions about this race, feel free to email me :)

Monday, October 7, 2013

Lesson #7 - Take Care Of Your Teeth

We learn this from a young age. It is shoved down our throats (sometimes literally) to brush our teeth multiple times a day. Floss. Use mouthwash. Get braces. Get regular check-ups.

It isn't until you are an adult that it truly sinks in how important all that really is.

Especially, if you work for a country radio station.

There are a lot of people who didn't take all that brushing to heart (thankfully, I was always scared to death of cavities and gum disease).

Teeth are something that I'm 100% vain about. I admit it. Smiles/teeth are the #1 thing I notice on a guy. Bad teeth is a deal breaker for me.

So, that is my lesson this Monday. 

Take Care Of Your Teeth.

Sunday, October 6, 2013

Lesson #6 - Sometimes, Choose No Plans

A couple weeks ago, I was looking at a weekend of nothing to do. Originally, my immediate thought was, "Oh, man. What am I going to do this weekend?!"

Then, it hit me...... Nothing.
With the exception of going out to eat on Saturday, I don't think I left the house. In fact, I stayed in my PJs most of the weekend.

The six weekends before that? Packed.

Every weekend since and going until mid-November? Packed.

Why I had an instant rush to fill up my time is beyond me, but I'm glad I did take the opportunity to just veg out.

Sometimes, it is A-ok to choose to have no plans.

Saturday, October 5, 2013

Lesson #5 - Trust Your Instincts

I have pretty good instincts. Usually, if there is something nagging in the back of my head, it will turn out to be right.

Let's just take TG, for example. For the past few months, I got the feeling that he was probably seeing someone, but just wasn't saying anything. I know his patterns, so I figured that if it got serious enough, I'd eventually find out. It turns out that I was right, just I never would have guessed what was really going on.

Another time, a close family friend was dating a guy that I just.did.not.like. I mean, I loathed this guy and had absolutely NO reason. To the point that other people thought I was being completely rude and unreasonable. I very rarely cannot stand someone. And, even less am I unable to hide my contempt. About 99% of the time, even if I'm not super fond of a person, I can try to find at least one thing appealing and then tolerate them on that level. But, not this guy. He is one of a handful in my life that I was downright hostile towards. A few months later, we found out that this guy had a HORRIBLE past and was worse than I could have imagined.

This happens a lot, in big or little situations. I will have suspicions or surmise something that I really have no proof about. A lot of times, I won't even say anything to anyone because I fear I'll come off as a crazy person. There are times that I will mention it to a close friend/family, but it's like I will feel the need to list off all these reasons for thinking it..... when, really, it's just my gut.

I don't always end up being right, but I've got a pretty good accuracy rate. I think we all tend to. Our instincts.... our gut feelings.... they are there for a reason. I think God puts it there for a reason.

Trust your instincts and yourself.

Friday, October 4, 2013

Lesson #4 - Cravings Are Real

So, I mentioned that I participated in the Advocare 24-Day Challenge. I lost apprx 10 lbs, pre-cruise in the 24 days.

I say "approx" because I'm now in THAT time, so weighing myself the past few days has been futile.

Which brings me to my lesson....... Cravings are a real thing. I know we sometimes abuse the idea of having a food craving, but it is real.

The past 3 1/2 weeks, I've basically craved nothing. Like, I knew I would like it if I was eating it, but I wasn't consumed with a desire for any particular food item. In fact, this past Sunday, several family members were eating ice cream in front of me and I was fine with it. I didn't feel like I was depriving myself.

Then, last night happened.

I was overwhelmed with a STRONG need for pizza and ice cream. Like, I may have shot someone if I didn't have it. So, I ate two slices of pizza and 3 oz of ice cream (I know it was 3 oz because it was in one of those little cups). That fed the craving and I was fine.

I started this morning (TMI) and another one hit me. At lunch. I *needed* PB Pie FroYo. Thankfully, I was able to get it (again, a very small serving) and now I'm ok.

My point? Our hormones do cause our bodies to overtake our brain, at times.

So, the next time a guy tried to tell you that you are imagining things, you just tell him I said it was true.

Thursday, October 3, 2013

Lesson #3 - Groom Your Eyebrows

Seeing as I have been all dark and twisty the past week, I'm going for one of those "lighter" lessons today.

Eyebrows. Unless you have NATURALLY pencil-thin, beautifully shaped eyebrows, they need to be groomed.

I've been getting mine waxed for years, but I'm honestly not as regular about it as I should be. Like now.... I got my eyebrows waxed right before my cruise (a month ago) and haven't since. Now? They are some scary beasts.

Here's a funny story for you..... Several years ago, my cousin Heidi was visiting all by herself and we went to get our nails done. The lady that does my nails and eyebrows spent the entire manicure trying to convince Heidi to get hers waxed. Heidi wanted no part of it and was slightly offended that the lady was so adamant.

Then, a couple months later, she calls me and says, "So, I decided on a whim to try waxing my eyebrows. That lady was right. I needed it. Badly. What was I thinking to wait so long?"

So, that is my lesson for the day. Make sure your eyebrows are groomed. It does wonders for your face.

Wednesday, October 2, 2013

Lesson #2 - Love is Limitless

I haven't yet felt the love of a mother to a child or the love that two people feel when they commit their lives to one another. However, I think it's safe to say that I love deeply. Even without having the aforementioned love situations, I have people in my life that I just love without limit.

It can be a great thing, but it can also drain you. What I'm starting to learn is that you just have to love and not worry about how the other person responds. I'm not talking about going crazy or smothering or anything like that.... I just mean, you have to love them and just be. You can't help how much you love them and you can't help how much they do/don't return the feelings.

No matter what, you don't let them punish you for it and you don't punish yourself.

Tuesday, October 1, 2013

Lesson #1 - Speaking Up

 There have been several times in the past few years that I've written about this. Usually, it is when I have finally gotten the courage to admit my feelings to the current boy (well.... really, there have been two The Guy and Fun Distraction). But, I've also talked about how I tend to keep things in.

I'm afraid to say something I will regret..... I'll regret the consequences..... So, I just keep silent.

Then, I end up regretting NOT saying what I was truly feeling. Because, we cannot hold other people accountable for things they didn't know.

In the end, I may be sad about the other person's reaction/actions, but I never end up sorry that I said something. Because, I was truthful.... and, in that moment, 100% me.

I've learned to speak up, but not in anger. Stay above the belt. Say your feelings, but don't be mean. Be firm, but loving.

It's all a hard line to tow, but I'm getting better at it. Whether at work or with friends or with family or with the Customer Service rep at zazzle.com...... I'm slowly getting better at voicing my thoughts on a situation.

This weekend, TG.... who still hasn't addressed the 38 week elephant in the room (oh, yeah, that is right.... apparently, he's going to be a Daddy sometime around Oct 12th...... yes, my anger and hurt was multiplied).... decided to be all cute on our personal FBs. After several hours of mulling it over (and, getting out the super sarcastic and nasty things I wanted to reply with), I settled on this.....

Beyond him replying, "Touche!!!" we still have spoken or texted. While I spoke up in that letter I wrote him such a long time ago, I just went ahead and started being his friend again without speaking up about how his silence for six months affected me.

At the very least, he now knows that while I *do* wish him well and I *do* still call him a friend, I'm not happy with him.

So, today's lesson is to "Speak Now." 

31 Days of Life Lessons

I have seen this pop up all over my blog roll over the past 12ish hours and thought I'd challenge myself.

Nester is hosting a 31 Days Challenge and when I saw some of the blogger-chosen topics, my mind got going. The past week has been..... off. I'm the type that something will happen and it makes me rethink life for a while. I think and consult and think and talk.... then, I eventually chalk it up to a lesson learned.

At first, I thought I would do 31 Days of People Who Mean the World to Me. I'm blessed/spoiled enough that I could easily come up with that many and then feel bad that I left people out. However, the more I thought about it, the more I realized that they mean the world to me because they teach (or have taught) me something.

Lessons..... that's what I want to blog about. The lessons that life and my loved ones have taught me.

Some will be serious. However, I'm whimsical enough to appreciate the little, silly life lessons. Hopefully, I'll come out of October a little more cheerful than I'm going into it.

So, please join me for the next 31 Days. I'd love to hear your thoughts on the various lessons I've learned....