Friday, October 28, 2011

A New Year's Resolution

It didn't hit me until just a few moments ago, that a year ago, I had abdominal surgery to remove a very large uterine fibroid.

A year ago, I walked into the hospital full of hope (that they wouldn't end up doing a hysterectomy and that I wouldn't die) and more than a little trepidation of the healing to come.

Well, here I am, a year later, and I have the same emotions - just the subject and the location have changed.

I spent the last thirty minutes or so looking over pictures from the last year.

And since we're all friends, I'll admit that I've gained weight.  The number is actually around 20 pounds.  But by looking at pictures, it seems that I've gained it all in my face, my neck, my belly, my butt, my...okay then, I see it everywhere in the pictures I just glanced through.

And oy vey does it suck to look at pictures of yourself and realize just how much ground you've lost. I feel like I'm starting all over in so many areas of my life and it's a daunting feeling.  I just asked myself, "'s just you and me.  Do you really want to add another thing that you're starting over again with?"

I took a few seconds to think about it, but the answer was still yes!

I'm not waiting for January 1st to start anew.  The last 365 days have been filled with a lot of pain, emotionally and physically.  I've had a lot of new beginnings - a new job, a new home, a new single life.  I've had a lot of losses - my relationship, my grandmother.  I've celebrated a lot - a successful surgery, my little sister's wedding, and me getting through some really rough months of therapy.

But if I'm to be 100% honest, I'm fully ready to put this year to bed.   I'm ready to put it behind me, to acknowledge the things that I've learned and to mourn the stuff that I've lost.

And I'm ready to get my self-confidence back.  I'm ready to feel powerful while running again.  I'm ready to try new foods, new recipes, and to practice restraint when it comes to eating.

After a year of feeling anything but sexy, I'm ready to bring the sexy back.

A year ago, I felt broken going into surgery.  I'm sad to say that that feeling hasn't really left me after all this time - not really.  It's felt like one thing after another for the past year.  I've felt like other things and other people have ruled my life. 

Isn't it time I take my life back? 

Aren't I worth eating healthy foods - foods that fuel my body rather than ones that numb the pain I've been feeling? Aren't I worth getting up an extra 45 minutes in the morning to go for a quick run?  Aren't I worth saying nice things to myself rather than inwardly groaning at my appearance in the mirror?

I want to believe the answer is yes; I've worked hard in in therapy to learn that the answer is yes.

So starting tomorrow (which, by my clock is in about 10 minutes), I'm going to start living like it.

Here's to a year of new beginnings, of shedding fear and old beliefs, and of choosing to believe in me.

Who's with me? 

Thursday, October 27, 2011


It’s probably been a long time coming, but Joe and I have officially broken up.

Like I wrote in my post “Making Room”, there were a few ways this could go.

“So will we keep dating? Maybe. Will we live together again? Maybe. Will we break up? Maybe. Will we part ways and never speak again? Maybe. Will this all get figured out and we'll live happily ever after? Maybe. Will we each meet someone else to spend the rest of our lives with? Maybe.”

And I’m so sad to have it end the way that it did. It was pretty sucky and it was difficult to not be able to have the closure that I so would’ve wanted.

In the end, I didn’t get to tell him anything that was in my heart. All he heard was that I felt like we were more like friends than anything else and he bolted.

Over two months ago, I wrote this regarding our relationship:

“Can you see why this is a tough decision? So no, I’m not going to make any rash decisions. I owe it to myself to not do that. Because if you’re anything like me, you know that after you end a relationship, it’s easy to second guess all the decisions you’ve ever made. It’s easy to see all the ways you were intolerant of someone else’s flaws. It’s easy to blame yourself for throwing away a perfectly good relationship. What I want to do is explore all the possibilities, try all the ways I can, collect data (hello, I’m an engineer), and understand how I feel. That way I know that in the wee hours of the night when “The Voice” tells me how stupid I was and how much being alone sucks, I can whisper back that I made the right decision and that time heals all wounds.”

Tuesday night, “The Voice” told me that I was a horrible person and that I wouldn’t find anyone else who was as marvelous as Joe. It told me that I was heartless and that I wanted too much. Because the truth is, I didn’t want to break up Tuesday night. But I did want to tell the truth about how I felt.

At one point, I knew I could’ve said some things to make it hurt less. I could’ve said that I wasn’t 100% certain that the love was lost. I could’ve said that I still wanted to try more. Those things would’ve been truths. But would they have just delayed the inevitable? Would they have made it hurt worse for him in the end? Maybe. So I swallowed those words and let nature take its course.

One thing lead to another and now yours truly is single.

He’s asked that I not contact him in any way. He’s removed me as a friend on Facebook (which we never communicated there anyway) and removed me from other shared applications that we had.

He has, effectively, removed his love.

While that’s perfectly normal, it is terribly triggering. And yet, I am reminded that I have my own truth inside my body.

I have a womb that wants to bear children. I have a heart that can mend and eventually love again. My mind knows that I tried everything within my power to make this work. My feet are firmly planted on the ground and my arms can hug the husband I’ll eventually have.

It feels in some ways like a deep cut. At first, all you can think about is the pain. Eventually, I know that I’ll be reminded of the cut whenever it hurts. I’ve been through this before and know that the cut is the hardest part…and that all that’s left is the healing.

Because as I wrote, time does heal all wounds.

But oh, how I miss my best friend.

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Accidentally finishing a 5K

Folks, the last time I ran was in June.

As in four months ago.

As in I’ve been dreading the first run back because I knew I would feel sluggish and my pace would be a far cry from where it used to be.

But one of the things I LOVE about my new place is how close it is to a lake and a few parks.

The lake I’m closest to is called Sloan Lake and it’s about three miles around. Sunday morning I decided that I would walk and run the circumference of the lake – you know, to get back in my groove.

Less than three miles? I can do that. No problem. Only I didn’t factor in the distance to and from the lake. Nor the heavy construction that left the paved path detouring through neighborhoods.

And I didn’t know that there was a race that morning; one that I apparently joined halfway through. I got to cross a finish line with lots of applause and then looks of confusion as I kept running past the volunteers.

At the end of the day, I ran a bit over 4 miles and I’m happy to say that I ran more than I walked.

My next 5K will be the Turkey Trot in El Paso on Thanksgiving morning. I ran it 2 years ago and my goal is to just run the whole thing and to try to forget about the time, pace, and where I used to be.

It’s where I am now that matters, right?

Wednesday, October 19, 2011


Lots of things in my life have helped me feel a bit turned upside down.

For starters, I did close on my house at the end of September. But trying to make the closing date 3 weeks after the date of the offer was pure silliness in this day and age. I found out the day before that I was approved to close the next day – literally at the last minute. My credit worthiness wasn’t a factor, but because of programs like the Patriot Act, every deposit and every money exchange needs to be scrutinized to the nth degree. On one hand, I get that their diligence might stop or dissuade someone else, but on the other hand, it sure was a pain to go through.

Part of my kitchen; the freezer is next to the stove and the
refrigerator is on a completely different wall.
The day of closing brought excitement and then disgust as I realized that the previous owner opted to not clean anything, to leave a full fridge and freezer full of expired items (like gallons of milk and rotting meat) and take out that should’ve been taken out. He filled the recycling bin with linens and broke countless glasses in the alley. He left debris everywhere and when he took his art (that had been stuck up with double-sided tape), he removed patches of paint as well. There were a few nice things that he left, like cleaning supplies (perhaps he didn’t know what to do with them?) and rugs that I wasn’t expecting. The main bathroom shower rod was broken such that the only way to fix it is with clear sided tape. And no, without getting into it, buying a new rod won’t work.

Nothing like buying a new home and then immediately feeling an immediate dampening because the place looks like some sort of feral child used to live there…

Less than 24 hours passed and I had a leak from the upstairs bathroom to the downstairs bathroom through the air vent. The leak has been fixed, but I’m now a proud owner of a giant hole in the closet of the bathroom (to get to the leaky pipes). I had another leak (this time from the downstairs shower) this past weekend; but I ended up trouble shooting and then fixing it myself.

Home Depot and I are becoming fast friends. But the relationship is one I’d rather put a stop to because it’s kinda’ pricey.

Having said that, I’ve had a few friends over (one couple were so nice and GAVE me a lawn mower and the other brought a huge bottle of wine that I’m determined to finish) and it has felt marvelous. I’m sure everyone says “Oh, I like your house!” to be nice…but because this house is the culmination of a journey that I have been on for weeks, months, and years, it feels awesome to have my choices enthusiastically supported.

Each box I unpack helps me feel more connected with what my life has been and currently is. For the most part, these things have been packed up for the last year and a half, but some items were moved from my garage in 2007 and then never unpacked in the place I moved into last. So re-opening those boxes and tubs are like meeting up with an old friend.

Even with the leaks, the paint jobs that desperately need to happen, and my dwindling bank account, I can’t help but feel lucky and blessed.