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I’m reblogging this post from HealthDemystified because I believe it’s an important reminder to always be present in our lives. I’m ridiculously guilty or multitasking with technology in hand, and I need to be more focused on the original task I started. Enjoy!

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One step forward… *hopefully* none back.

So, I decided today that I can no longer hold on to the past.  I can no longer hang on to relationships that do not exist.  I can no longer continue to torture myself– hoping things will change.  I can no longer keep the text messages… the voicemails.  I keep listening to them to hear his voice– to remember how excited he once was about us.  I keep re-reading the text conversations and seeing him tell me he loves me.  I keep seeing how it appears he can’t let go any easier than I, but is too stubborn to make the effort.  I keep seeing how easily I am drawn back in by him, and how desperate it makes me look.  

I am not desperate.

 I have to let him go.  So, I did what I should have done a long time ago.  I deleted every single one of the voicemails (after listening to them and getting all choked up from hearing his voice and declarations of love, of course). All 14 of them.  I deleted every single text message (after reading them all again, of course).  All 350 that I had saved.   Everything is gone. 

I am not certain how I feel about this..

…part of me is proud of myself, because, previously, I would have kept them indefinitely and continued to torture myself–trying to figure out how I could have changed his mind– what I could have done to keep him.  So, yeah, I’m proud.  It’s a big step for me to not give myself reasons to self-doubt or self-sabotage.  It feels kind of freeing, too, to know that I’m learning–and practicing–how to let go of the negatives… the things that hold me back from living….

…but another part of me is sad.  Sad because deleting the voicemails means I will likely never hear his voice again– and I adored his voice.  Sad because deleting the texts means I no longer have it in ‘writing’ that he does love me still… and for whatever reason, I liked knowing he still loved me.  Sad because– self-sabotage is really the only thing I know I do well.  So now what???  Holding on to my past is pretty much the only way I know how to define myself.  Terrible body image and bulimia in high school.  The rape in college.  The disconnect with my family.  The failed marriage.  The subsequent failed relationship attempts.  The continuous battle with body image now partnered with stubborn weight due to Diabetes.  The list goes on and on and on….

I suppose there is nowhere else for me to go now but forward since I’ve deleted the past.  I’m no where near ready for a relationship like I had with him…. as much as I would like it.  I’ve still got a boatload of work to do on myself before I can consider taking that step.  Will it happen?  I’m sure it will at some point, yes, but for right now, I’m happy with how things are.  I just hope that when the time is perfect–the right man will woo me something awesome!  Every girl deserves to be wooed.

Have you ever thrown out, deleted, given away something because of the memories attached?  How long did it take you to be alright with that something?  Did something better take its place?  I’d love to hear your experiences!

39 days down.. another 39 on deck!

“In the long run, we shape our lives, and we shape ourselves. The process never ends until we die. And the choices we make are ultimately our own responsibility.”
― Eleanor Roosevelt

What a difference an extra few weeks makes in getting beyond the hurt of losing a relationship with someone you love.  In breakups past, I would, typically, retreat into my own little world of self-pity and/or look for validation from another man.  I would hide out in my house for months on end– avoiding friends and social situations.  I would eat myself ‘happy’ while watching endless hours of Degrassi: The Next Generation — crying my eyes out because I so got what those poor kids were feeling.  Oh, stop smirking– you know you watched the show, too……

This time, however, I did nothing of the sort.

Of course I was sad. Of course I felt betrayed, used, and unimportant.  Of course I attempted to salvage what I could of the relationship– but, truth be told, was not exactly certain what it was I was attempting to call a relationship.  Instead of succumbing to the pain of losing him, I decided (after about a month) to stop wasting my time attempting to define my self-worth by the man I had on my arm, but, rather, just define myself.  Finding a relationship no longer interested me.  Men, in general, no longer interested me. (Women did not interest me either.  Just clarifying.)  The only thing that interested me (besides my children.. duh) was me.  My emotional health was pretty much at the top of the list.  I needed to make myself feel whole again.  I needed to figure out what drove me to make some of the decisions I made.  I needed to understand why I always felt to blame when a relationship failed.  I needed to know why I allowed so many people to so easily use me as a whipping post, a doormat, a short-lived fling.  Why did I think so little of myself that I continued to accept it as normal?  My physical health was also thrown in there– mostly on a dare.  I knew I needed to take better care of myself, but honestly, I didn’t care.  I knew I was fat and out of shape.  Again, I really didn’t care.  I knew I was setting a terrible example for my children– and this, I did care about, but was too fat, out of shape, sick, and tired to do anything about it.

I had no idea where to begin with my emotional baggage, so, as I have previously posted, I began writing down all the negative things that entered my mind.  I wrote down my fears.  I wrote down my worries.  I wrote down my frustrations.   And then I threw them out.   Everyday.   After about two weeks, I began to see a pattern of when the negativity would strike, or when I’d begin feeling overwhelmed.  Once I knew when the shit fan was going to start spewing, I challenged myself to step aside.  I did not always get out of the way in time, and sometimes, I didn’t even attempt to move,  but in the end, I did come out smelling a lot closer to a rose than in previous encounters with the fan. 

I started to see that it isn’t a bad thing to be as giving and caring as I am– but it is a bad thing for people to take advantage of me.  I started saying ‘No’ to things that would simply be unreasonable for me to accomplish.  I stopped inviting the chaos, and, although it was still chaotic, it had become a lot more manageable.  I asked for help.  That was a HUGE accomplishment.  Even greater, however, was when I actually accepted said help.   I accepted invites to go out with friends–male friends included.  I stopped worrying what other people thought when they saw me, and told myself if they didn’t like what they saw….. they could stop looking.  Their decision.  It’s amazing how freeing that concept was!!  Suddenly, it felt like the dark shit-cloud that had been following me for the last decade began to dissipate.  I even bought myself a new dress.  Anyone that knows me knows I absolutely despise trying on clothes. 

So, with my burgeoning self-respect in tow, I set out to tackle the physical health portion of my relationship with myself.  This was probably more difficult than the emotional baggage, because, well, let’s face it–I hate exercising.  I started out with short walks on the treadmill my dear friend gave me.  The walks (and sometimes jogs) were great.  They were also easily skipped because I had no one to hold me accountable. 

So I accepted a challenge.

This challenge was supposed to be—- 180 days to transform my body into that of a Victoria Secret model.  Yeah, I have no idea.  Didn’t I just type a paragraph or so ago that I started saying no to things impossible for me to accomplish?  Whoops?  But, don’t worry!  I knew the 180 days was unreasonable, so the challenge was changed.  Apparently, since I had agreed to participate in my very first 5k in 19 years and totally wasn’t keeping track of how much time I had to train (procrastination ROCKS!), I had absolutely no idea  it was only 39 days away.  I’m sensing some invited chaos.. haha!  I weighed my options– I could quit before I even get started, or, I could put on my big girl undies and do the best I could to get as ready as 39 days allowed.  Good thing I bought new undies!!  🙂

Since I have been blogging, a few of my friends have mentioned to me that they are inspired by me– that I have motivated them to begin taking control of things in their own personal lives, that I’ve given them the courage to start working out or eating better.  One of these friends, Colleen, asked me if I’d be free to walk with her in the mornings.  I agreed.  We have a track the high school uses for football/track/etc right by our houses, so we decided to meet there.  Four times around is a mile.  Easy enough.  It was only the two of us for a day, though.  Day two brought Tracey.  Day three or four brought Jennifer.  Week two or three brought Kelly.   And, every day we go, we either meet someone new, or get talking with the ‘regulars’.  Most of us walk 5 days a week–  Some more, some less.   Some days I’m way ahead of the pack– other days, they’ve been there for half an hour before me, and have already done a mile or so.  It all equals out in the end.  Some days I jog a lap or two.  Most days I don’t.  I want to do more  jogging.  The point is, we’re out there moving.

Turns out, though, that the physical part is totally intertwined with the mental part, and we’re not as alone in healing and moving on as we might think.  Our morning walking crew turned into the best support group ever!  We’d talk about our problems, relationships, kids, jobs, job searches, family dynamics, and anything else that came to mind.  Being able to bounce ideas off of another person–someone not directly involved in your everyday life– is amazingly therapeutic!  It may have started out being a little bit overwhelming  knowing I was part of a larger reason these other women were out there–  I could barely be my own motivation, how could I be someone else’s– but, it has morphed into gratitude that they’re out there with me listening to me, offering suggestions and feedback…. or a hug.  A sweaty hug.. but a hug nonetheless!  They have been so helpful to me in getting past the hurt and rejection and loss of my relationship.  I hope that they know that they inspire me just as much as they say I inspire them. 

So, that 39 day challenge?  Yes.. I completed it– mostly!  My friend Michael and I signed up for the Junetienth Race– knowing I’d be walking most, if not all, of it.  I convinced another friend, Darryl, to walk it with me– and thank goodness he agreed!!  I set my alarms— but NOT for Sunday!!  Thankfully, Darryl didn’t give up attempting to wake me, or I never would have made it there!  He and I walked together– well, ok.. he walked normal.. I attempted to keep up with his 5. something ridiculous mph pace!!  Sheesh!  Plus, I guess since walkers are slower, they made us take a shorter route– 2.1 miles instead of 3.1 miles.  We completed our walk in 31 minutes and a few seconds– and we felt as if we cheated!!  We crossed back into the main path as the runners were approaching the same area.  haha!  The looks we got were priceless!  There was one wonderful woman who cheered for us… “YAY, WALKERS!  Good job!!”  That was nice of her!  🙂  And, I beat Darryl because the finish line official said it had to be “ladies before gentlemen.”  Snicker– I beat him with chivalry.  Awesome.   All in all, it was a great time– I received a shirt with registration and a trophy for finishing third in my age group.  I felt bad accepting the trophy– but hey, it’s all good.   The whole point of this race was simply to create and achieve a goal.  I did that.  For the first time in I have no idea how long– I didn’t quit because things didn’t turn out the way I had originally planned.  I’m proud of myself for that.

So.. what’s next?  Well? I don’t know for certain, yet, which one it will be– but there WILL be another race in 39 days or so.  I think 39 days has become my official time frame for things.  I have Michael to thank for that, too, as he is the jackass that challenged me in the first place… 🙂 

What kind of goals have you set for yourself?  How long have you given yourself to complete them?  Do you have any tried and true methods of sticking to a plan or working towards a specific goal?  I’d love to hear them!

Forgive my lapse in posting.. here’s a mess of random thoughts!

I also remember the moment my life changed, the moment I finally said, ”I’ve had it! I know I’m much more than I’m demonstrating mentally, emotionally, and physically in my life’.’ I made a decision in that moment which was to alter my life forever. I decided to change virtually every aspect of my life. I decided I would never again settle for less than I can be.”

~Anthony Robbins~

HI!  It’s been a while!  Sorry ’bout that.  Remember that  Shit Fan I have previously mentioned?  Well, yes, it struck again!  Surprise, Surprise!  No, it’s not really a surprise at all.  Uggh.  So, basically, I’m going to use this post as a ‘catch-up” post, if that’s alright with you all?

The Ex:

So, a little over 2 weeks ago, the ex-boyfriend and I were texting, and he mentioned that he misses me…. still loves me… is a confused, emotional mess… doesn’t know what he wants.  Is he sacrificing his happiness if he decides to go back to his old life?  What if his happiness is with me?  He wants to talk to me– on the phone– if I’m alright with that.  Just a few days is all he needs.   As I’m sure you can all imagine, I fell for it.  Again.  Hook, line, and sinker. Because, well, that’s just how I roll.  I got that glimmer of hope– that maybe– just maybe he was seeing what I’ve seen all along.  I told him that I love him, and miss him, too, and that sure– I’d be alright with talking on the phone.  We texted a bit about what went wrong– cleared the air a bit on some issues.  But he still isn’t sure what he wants.

And, I get that.  I absolutely get that.  I can honestly say that I know how that feels.  I have been in many situations where I simply just don’t know what I want–Unsweetened iced tea?  Water?  The salad?  Greasy patty melt?  Seriously.  Decisions are tough.  But, see, for me?  The decision about who I wanted to be with was not.  I knew I wanted to be with him.  Warts and all. Was it hard work?  Yes.  Were there things that we’d have to work on (likely) continuously?  Sure.  Were there things that I didn’t particularly care for?  Of course.  But, there was still no question for me.  I wanted to be with him.  We moved WAY too quickly– so we had some issues very early on, but I believed we could get through anything.  That’s how much I loved him.

So, after thinking about, and re-reading, our text conversation close to a thousand times, it dawned on me.  Why on Earth am I holding on so desperately to someone who knows he loves and misses me, but doesn’t know if he wants to be with me?   WHY do I allow myself to even pretend that there is hope for us??  If he did come back to me, I’d always be worried that his past life would come back just as she did this time and decide she wants him again.. just like she did this time.  And he’d leave me.  Again.  Or– would he be coming back because she decided she DOESN’T want him anymore, and, therefore, I’m the fallback plan?  I will say, though, that I do not, in any way, believe that is how we started out– I believe he really thought he was ready for a new relationship. 

I guess what I’m trying to say is this…….I don’t want to ever doubt that my man loves, respects, desires, needs, and truly knows that he is with me because he WANTS to be– not because he feels he has no other option.  I think I deserve that man who wants to be with me because of his genuine interest in me–and what we could become– not because of obligation or convenience.  As Gwen Stefani so eloquently put it.. “I ain’t no holla back girl.”   I have told him that I am not certain we can continue to text, because, well, it’s feels too hard for me to switch between our love relationship back to a friendship.  Not because I don’t love him.. not because I don’t still think about him and our plans.  Not because I don’t WANT him in my life.  But because I cannot heal and move on if I’m constantly holding onto the idea of my life with him. The life he doesn’t know if he wants or can handle. 

Blah.

My mother:

Very long story short—-My brother and I were informed that our mother was going to pass away last Monday.  Quickly.  We needed to get to her bedside.  Schedules re-arranged. Plans cancelled or changed.  Travel arrangements made.  Child care situated. And then we drove from NJ (brother) and NY(me) to Vermont (mom).  Not really certain how to explain what happened up there, so I will simply say this:  Mom is alive, and, for all intents and purposes– well.  I guess my issue with this is NOT that she is alive, but, rather, that I prepared for her to not be.  I feel as if I’m on an emotional roller coaster that just refuses to stop!  AAACK!  She was given the anointing of the sick, and “woke up” within a few hours, so of course, her recovery is divine intervention.  I’m glad she has her faith to hold onto and keep with her.  I am home now, and hoping she sticks around for a while longer.

My 5k Training:

Oh boy.  I will start this section by saying– I am SUPER proud of myself for continuing to get out there almost every day to walk/jog.  Usually by now, I’d have quit.  I’m not seeing the weight loss results I’d hoped, and that is typically my reason for quitting my diet/exercise routines.  This time, though, I’m focusing more on my overall physical and emotional health.  And it’s working.  I had to take about 4 days off during my trip to Vermont last week, and despite my reluctance, I went back to the track Monday morning.  I’m determined to stick to this.  I have been having a lot of difficulties with shin splints, and it’s been keeping me from actually going hardcore running, but I’m working on correcting them.  Stretching, shoes, inserts, ice, ibuprophen.  I know that I am likely going to be unable to run/jog the full 5k on June 3rd, but at this point, 39 days is simply not enough time to undo all of the damage I’ve done to myself over the past 19 years.  I  am not looking to compete.  I only wish to complete.  If I complete this race– whether I walk the whole damn thing or not– I will have actually stuck to a goal I’ve set for myself without sabotaging it.  That’s all I want.  There is another race July 8th (Run for Rover) that I am looking forward to, perhaps, competing, but for now?  I will be thrilled to simply complete the Junetienth.   

For now, I think that about wraps up my update.  I’m hungry– and so I will go get lunch.  A healthy one!  🙂

As always, thanks for reading, and I appreciate the feedback!  🙂

 

Ball Dropping and how it pertains to me….

“The man who complains about the way the ball bounces is likely to be the one who dropped it.”

— Lou Holtz

Too often, we consume ourselves with negativity.  Be it a negative attitude, a negative friend, a negative self-image, a dead-end job, or an unhealthy relationship,  we allow the negativity into our lives and succumb to its power.  Sometimes, it simply sits within our minds and barely makes itself known.  Every so often it will appear in the form of a negative comment, or feeling of insecurity, but usually stays out of sight.   Sometimes, it comes and goes–making us feel secure in thinking we have control over it, when, in reality, its ability to keep coming back solidifies its control over us.  But, when it’s in remission, so to speak, we feel good–positive– healthy, so we do not consider it a problem.   We liken these two types of negativity to a bad day… a bad run of luck… a temporary setback.  These are acceptable, right?  Everyone has bad days now and again… Right?

Then, there is the type of negativity that becomes our identity.  We have all seen it in someone we know– the person is simply the most miserable human being on the face of this planet.  Never a good word to say, or a helping hand for a person in need.  Never sees the joys in life, but quickly–as if a magnet–attracts every misfortune and makes certain all around are aware of said misfortune.  This kind of negativity is dangerous.  It is the downfall of many healthy relationships.  It is the deterioration of self-worth.  It is the rack and ruin of careers.  It is the decent into a very lonely and miserable existence.  But, yet, we are seemingly unaware when this decent begins.  One day we are going along, with nothing but the clouds to bring us down, and, then, as if we took a trip into the Twilight Zone,  the very next day we are struggling to keep our perspective and not consider every bump in the road a deliberate derailment of our journey.  We see every hurdle as a burden to bear.  We believe every cancellation of plans, or inability to mesh schedules with friends and loved ones as rejection.  We take criticism as insult.

I have often described my life as a soap opera.  NO ONE could have happen to them the things that happen to me,  I mean, consistently happen to me.  One friend loves to (jokingly) poke fun at me saying how just when he thinks things couldn’t possibly get worse, I call him and unload another doozy.  I have often compared my life to the ‘Shit Fan’.  What is the ‘Shit Fan’ you ask?  Ah, let me explain……   The ‘Shit Fan’ is the huge, Vornado-like fan that is continuously spewing shit.  All shit all the time.   I KNOW everyone has, at some point in their life, stood in front of a blowing fan.  You know, like when it’s super hot outside, and you stand in front of the fan to get the direct hit of moving air– well, the fan in front of which I choose to stand…my moving air on that really hot summer day….  is a shit fan.  A super-poweful, always-running shit fan.    And for whatever reason, while I have always SEEN the shit coming, I have been unable to step to the side.

So, it covers me.

Head. To. Toe.

Covered in shit.

And WHY am I writing about this shit fan?  And what could it possibly have to do with the quote above?  Well, today, while walking with my friends at the track, we somehow began a conversation about how two of us seem to focus on the negative aspects of our lives, therefore never allowing ourselves out of the vicious downward spiral of emotion–while the other sees the negative aspects as opportunities to welcome positive aspects in turn.  So, it got me thinking– why DO I focus on all of the negativity surrounding me– allowing it to attach its cold, dark tentacles into my brain?  Why am I not able to just see things as bumps in the  road rather than huge, cavernous spaces into which I will undoubtedly fall?  Why do I take just about every single criticism personally–solidifying my belief that I am simply a failure in this life?  That I’m a terrible mother?  That I’m stupid–both intellectually and emotionally? That I am as wanted as that never-ending spray of shit coming from the shit fan?

Dang.. maybe that’s what the counselor thinks I should come back for some more “individual sessions”.  LOL!

I have blamed everything bad in my life on someone or something else.  My too-strick parents.  My (basically) absentee mother.  My brother for being WAY smarter than I in school, leaving me to listen to how I should be better and smarter.  My hip injuries for quitting running (which, yes.. that one is legit, but still, I could have continued to exercise in other manners..).  The economy for my low paying job.  My husband for not paying enough attention to me, or for straying during our marriage, or for keeping me from seeing my family in other states, or for telling me I’m ‘too fat to be taken seriously in any public speaking type of position.’  My kids for being, well, for being typical kids.  My friends for being thinner, or way prettier.  It’s never-ending, really.  I can come up with someone or something to blame for everything bad that has ever happened to me.   And, until recently, I never blamed myself for any of it.

That’s right.  I never blamed myself.

Hopefully, by now, most of you can see where the quote above fits into my story.  I am always complaining about some aspect of my life-the bouncing ball-and blaming the closest person/place/thing, yet, it is always me who drops it.  My brother wasn’t smarter than I… I was simply disinterested.  My injuries didn’t keep me from exercising when I could no longer run.. I was simply lazy.  The economy isn’t keeping me from getting a better paying job– I am.  Because I’m scared of change.  I’m not too fat to be taken seriously in ANYTHING..

well, ok.. maybe I wouldn’t be taken seriously if I attempted to be a swimsuit model for Sports Illustrated… but watch out, I might just want to someday….

So, what I have decided to do, and what I challenge all of you to do, is this:   For the next week, write down every negative thought that creeps into my life.  Write down what I was doing when it happened… or, when I noticed it was there.  Write down how I felt.  Write down what it urged me to do– did it make me want to cry?  Eat?  Sleep?  Exercise?  Shower? Scream?  Write it all down.  Write about the shit that’s coming at me from the Shit Fan.

And then I am going to throw it all away.

That’s right.  I am going to crumple up those papers and throw them away.  I have no need nor want for them in my life anymore.  The act of crumpling up our negative thoughts and throwing them in the garbage is therapeutic in that it first forces us to identify what is holding us back, and allows us to create a name for, or a statement about, the negativity and banish it for good.

I have lived in a self-imposed world of negativity for longer than I can remember, and I simply do not wish to do so anymore.  So, after I’ve identified, written down, and thrown away those negative things, I will then write down anything and everything positive within my life.  For example, I could write one of my negatives as “I do not have a lot of friends, and it makes me sad.”  After I’ve thrown that away, I will then write ” The people I choose to has as part of my life are not only my friends–they are my family.  I am happy when I am with them, or speaking to them, and often look at pictures of us together and smile, unconsciously, remembering what amazing memories we create together.”  I will use these daily lists of positives to remind myself that while I am not perfect– I am perfectly happy with who I am.  I’m tired of dropping the ball in my life– and in turn– my children’s lives.  I am taking back control of my emotions and my brain, and removing those cold, dark tentacles of negativity.

Will YOU take the challenge to remove yourself from the path of the Shit Fan?  How do you think it will impact your lives?  Would love to hear!

Progress, perhaps?

Strive for progress, not perfection.

 -Unknown

I think I mentioned that I’m attempting to eat Clean.  I do not recall if I mentioned I have been challenged to complete a 5K?   I also agreed to an extra fun challenge– transform myself into a Victoria Secret Model in 180 days.  The other participant has agreed to transform himself into a Hollister Male model physique in 60 days.  He is a lot thinner, younger, and much more in shape than I…. that’s why he only gets 60 days.  I compare it to bowling.. the worst bowler has the biggest handicap.  Yeah, I’ve got the biggest handicap.

So, one day, we are chatting on AIM (yeah, some people do still use it.. shut it) and the conversation looks pretty much like this…

Hollister: You don’t have 180 days… you have 39.

Me: WHAT?!  What do you mean I only have 39 days?? I have 180!

Hollister: No…. you have 39.  The 5k you agreed to run is in 39 days.

Me:  FML.

No effing way. It’s impossible.  I’m simply not able to pull off a 5k in 39 days!  I know I’ve mentioned that I had been a runner in my younger years, but, that was 19 years ago.

*Pause to let that set in….*

The last time I ran a race was 19 years ago.  Half of my life ago.  Completely unreal— not that I haven’t run a race in that long, but that I’m actually THAT OLD!!!  AAAACK!  I’m not certain how this is going to go.  As I stated, I accepted the challenge, and am on Day 6 of 39.  So far, I’ve only watched my diet, walked, and ‘shuffle jogged’ as I have named it– you know it.. that basically walking pace, but you’re bouncing as you would if you were jogging?  Yes.. that.  I figure, so long as I can perfect that, it’ll never seem as if I’m walking during my race!  Right?!?   As of this morning, I have lost a mere 3 lbs in those 6 days.  I had hoped it’d be a whole lot more, but I’m not complaining!  Slow and steady… Slow and steady….

I do feel myself getting stronger.  I was very concerned because my first ‘real’ workout left me with burning arches and shins.  The burning arches came about after (badly) completing the “Muffin Top Meltdown” dvd.  I was certain if the planks and sumo squat jumps with a kettlebell didn’t kill me, the burning arches would.  I was CRAZY sore! 

By the way— may I mention that planks seriously SUCK??  Holy crap.  Just saying.

So, anyway, I was very close to quitting this challenge because of the crazy pain in my shins and arches– but chose, instead, to do a little research on my trusty friend Google.  I learned that my both of my ailments could very well be due to a need for orthodics.  Of course I’m thinking those horribly ugly taupe shoes with the super-thick heel on one and normal heel on the other.. or those crazy expensive pieces of moulded plastic that fit inside the shoe bed.  Turns out?  Walgreens carries a few different type of arch support inserts!  Yay Me!  I bought the mid-range priced pair.  On Monday, I went walking with a few girlfriends of mine at the track near my home, and wore the insoles.  Would you believe?!?  Not a SINGLE bit of burning shins or arches!!  I was so thrilled!  I didn’t want to get too excited yet, because it was only one day– and I had taken a day off of walking for rest, so the pain could easily come back.  It DID NOT!! Not only did I walk again this morning with my girlfriends, I walked faster! I cannot believe how a $15 pair of inserts has made such a HUGE difference!!  I haven’t tried it yet with the workout dvd to see if the side to side motion still hurts, but I know that walking is SO much less painful on my dainty shins!  🙂

So, I’m proud to say that I have NOT quit the challenge– and have absolutely NO intention of doing so!  I feel SO much more mentally clear after walking.  The combination of friends, exercise, and fresh air certainly agrees with me! 

I am choosing to believe that the relief of shin/arch pain is progress–not perfection, as I am still sore elsewhere– but progress, nonetheless.  Next thing to tackle is to start the actual jogging for more than a few hundred meters………

I added a fun poll to this post… Please vote! 🙂  Thanks for reading and responding!

FWB, anyone?

 

“Friends with benefits? More than friends? Don’t sample the goodies unless you’re willing to risk addiction and withdrawal.” 

~Ann Landers~

This weekend, a few friends and I got together for movies and junk food.  We’re all pretty much broke as a joke, so yeah, we improvise!  We watched ‘Clerks’ and ‘Friends with Benefits’ while gorging on pepperoni monkey bread, chips, dip and rice crispy treats.  There was an ice cream cake as well, but we never got to it.  Sad, really.  But, I am certain it will not go to waste.  Anyway, we watched ‘Friends with Benefits’, and it got me thinking– can one REALLY have an arrangement with someone that is purely physical?  NEITHER party develops feelings at some point?  Is it possible?  I know people who are married and have an FWB on the side.  I know people who are single –with no desire to ever change that status– that have an FWB.  I know people who are exclusive with one person but without the relationship–simply a FWB.  I also know people who have tried to have an FWB, but couldn’t continue due to developing some serious feelings for the other person.  It’s a tricky thing, this FWB arrangement.

I will admit it, after my separation, I attempted to have one of these said arrangements.  I didn’t know it was going to be that, but just kind of morphed into it, I guess.   We were just two lonely people who enjoyed each others company, and could have a blast out on the town together and with friends, or just hanging out on the couch watching movies all night.  For a while, it was fine.  Nothing weird– no complications– no expectations.  But, after a few months, I began to realize that I was WAY more involved with ‘us’ than he.  I don’t know why I thought that if I was developing feelings, then, surely, he must be as well….. right?!?  No…… No, he was not.  Well, wait– he was– just not for me.  It hurt a bit, but being the type of relationship it was, I was able to put things into perspective quickly and easily.  I suppose that I believed it was one of those silent, but mutual agreements, that while we were ‘together’, we would be monogamous.  I have since learned that these types of relationships simply do not work that way unless the stipulation is brought to the table right from the beginning.   Today?  We are still awesome friends.  We hang out with our friends like nothing ever happened.  It was weird for a little while, but we’re just not willing to let anything come between our friendship.  And, I’m glad about that.

I do realize that there is, often times, more pressure from the girl to turn the arrangement into a relationship.  And, yes.  I am guilty of trying to make a relationship out of nothing.  But, I’m curious to know if there are guys who entered into one of these said arrangements and found himself falling for the girl.  If so, does he tell her?  Do they convert from arrangement to relationship like you see in the movies?  Or, is it easy for him to keep emotions out of the physical act of sex?  From my own experience, I know that it’s damn near impossible for me to be physically involved with someone and not have an emotional connection with him.  Chalk it up to being a stupid girl, I guess.  I have never been able to separate the two.  I know that I would be better off if I could separate the two, but I suppose I keep hoping that I will find the man who is equally attracted to me physically and emotionally. 

Is that really so much to ask?  Uggh.

I remember after my separation my father told me I would eventually want to be with a man again.  I told him he was crazy.  I didn’t need a man.  I have my Chilton’s book, my appliance owner manuals, and my tools to fix stuff on my own.  He said, “yes, and it’s great that you can fix things on your own.  But a Chilton’s book won’t keep you warm at night.”   He was right, of course.  Eventually, I did want to begin dating.  I did wish to find the right guy for me.  I did want to find my “happily ever after”.  Almost 3 years later…….  I’m still looking.  I thought I had found him twice.  The first time– this man is simply awesome.  We can talk about anything.  We can laugh, pick on each other, hang out.. he even lets me just sit on the phone and cry.  Did I want something more with him than I had?  Absolutely.  But I wouldn’t give up what we have now for the world unless circumstances changed considerably and allowed for more.  The second time?  Yeah.. he’s the reason I started blogging.  I was so very sure about him and our future.  I wanted nothing more than to be with him.  I wanted a lifetime with him and our combined 6 kids.  I was truly shattered when he left……. via text message.  It’s been over a month now, and while I’m healing and beginning to see the many red flags that were waving all around me, it still hurts.  Badly.  And it has completely turned me off of dating.  Ever.  It scares me how completely disinterested I am in attempting to date again.   My friends keep telling me this, too, will change, but I don’t know.  I honestly do not know if I can go through this heartache, or, disillusionment of beliefs, again.  I keep saying it is going to take one hell of an amazingly awesome man to convince me I need to go out with him. 

So, of course, the conversation of obtaining a FWB comes up with one of my BFF’s.  I say how it sounds like a good idea– that’s all I need really.  Someone to use and lose.  Blah. Blah.  Blah.  The fact is… I already know that I cannot separate emotions and sex.  So, therefore, I wouldn’t be able to have just a FWB arrangement– I’d end up falling for the guy and get my heart broken all over again when he doesn’t fall for me!  Uggh.  I just don’t know.

What do you guys think?  Is it REALLY possible to have a strictly physical relationship for BOTH parties?  No emotional involvement AT ALL?  If so… share your tips!  haha!  🙂