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A Decision That’s Not a Decision At All

Through the last few days I’ve been trying to figure out how to get this post done, and to be honest, I still haven’t figured it out yet. I’m sure that the lack of my flashing something shiny would let you know that I am not engaged to anyone, yet I am not exactly single either. I’m still in this weird limbo place, and it’s driving me crazy and making me MAD.

Let’s start closer to the beginning. The goal was to be able to make a decision about my relationship by the end of last year. Through countless discussions, two concurrent rounds of pre-marital counseling, two long weekend getaways, and a 90th birthday celebration, we worked our way through making a decision. Yet at this moment, though a decision has been made, I feel like there is no decision at all.

I talked to MensHealth on December 30th about what he had decided. At that time he told me that he couldn’t imagine his life in the future without me and he wanted to move forward to getting married. While that sounds like getting engaged/planning to get married, it hasn’t turned out to be that. He hasn’t actually proposed, which he says he plans to do, and he isn’t anymore willing to stop using if we get married, even though he’s stated his intention to get married. I feel like I’m getting swindled here.

During the above conversation, we talked about some things moving forward that were more concrete, and other than things on my end, none of those things have progressed beyond being talked about. I’m still being subjected to conversations about how this or that is contingent upon us getting engaged–the eternal “if.” I know, through all of my extensive research, that the longer you would take to move forward with plans you are making to marry within this calendar year, the harder (and more expensive) it will be to pull off. If you don’t want to make any plans until you propose, fine. But that means if you propose in March, but want to be married this year, you have a really intensive (and, again, expensive) road ahead. It really sounds like to me despite what he says that he really just isn’t ready to be engaged, let alone married. And I am not willing to marry anyone this unsure. Heck, I wouldn’t buy a deordant that says it may or may not prevent excessive sweating and body odor.

We have decided to spend more time apart. I think that’s best. If he’s not willing to move forward in a concrete way, then I need to step back and start focusing on other things. If you read my other blog, then you know my car was totaled this past week. I will have to stop taking my class, as I won’t have a ride each week. The money I planned to save by not having a car payment is gone. Because of how I lowered my car insurance when I paid off the car less than a month ago, I am not covered for most of the damages. Luckily, I was not at fault and the other driver was DUI, so I should get a settlement from his insurance company. No matter what happens, my plans for moving forward in my career and financially have effectively been derailed.

At this point, I don’t know what this is supposed to teach me or do for me. I have no nuggets of wisdom or advice about anything. I have no real plans for going forward. This very moment, I am revising my book and reordering my schedule. I am taking comfort from the scriptures and the thoughts, prayers and visits of friends. I am living.

XOXO

2blu2btru

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Thanks for Giving (Unsolicited Advice)!

Y’all…can I just be really frank about something? Every year, I dread Thanksgiving. It’s not that I have anything against a holiday which only exists as an excuse for me to stuff my face; in fact, I am thankful for such opportunities. Any excuse to throw down in the kitchen always gets my vote. It’s just that every year, something happens that’s worthy of having “-gate” behind it. Like “White Wedding-gate” last year, in which one of my aunts wanted to discuss whether or not I was sexually active across the Thanksgiving turkey. I’m not making that up even a little bit. So you can imagine my trepidation at going to yet another family gathering for Thanksgiving. I don’t mean the good ones with my mom and immediate family where we eat and laugh and joke, the obligatory showing out of someone happens and we all take it in stride, but the awkward silence, full of moments I’d rather forget, extended family ones.

I was happy, then, to spend Thanksgiving this year at my apartment alone, catching up on my spring cleaning. I trudged load after load of clothes to the laundry facility, which I had all to myself, and moved around my furniture until I was satisfied with the way the apartment was coming together. I went out and bought a massive amount of groceries and had a simple dinner before my TV. It was great. But it was missing that certain Thanksgiving something. It didn’t have any macaroni and cheese, collard greens, turkey, or sweet potato pie (OK, so there was a store bought pie, but that’s nowhere near the same). As much as my family gets on my nerves, I kind of missed them.

However, it didn’t make much sense to go all the way to my aunt’s house for less than a full day. I had to work on Friday, and I was going to a football game on Saturday at noon. My aunt called and told me to miss the game, but I won the tickets from work. Someone else who wanted to go wasn’t able to because I’d won and they didn’t; it didn’t seem right to waste them. Besides, I wanted to go. So I made a compromise: I would come down Saturday after the game and leave after dinner on Sunday. This is when I should have slapped myself in the face.

Why did I think this year would be any different? Because I’ve been taking charge of my health? Because I’m on track to pay off my car this year? Because I’ve put a lot of energy and effort into my relationship? Because I’ve decided what the next steps are along my career path? What was I thinking about, thinking these things would matter to anyone but me? My aunt wasted no time disabusing me of the notion that any of this meant anything.

In the space of less than two days, I was told:

  •  I need to relocate in order to take over her business when she retires. I will be given a salary of $48,000, or $25/hour. She retires in two years.
  • MensHealth isn’t going to marry me and I need to move on and start seriously thinking about my future.
  • I need to do a better job of managing my money so I can join them on a cruise next year.
  • My stomach is hanging; I should do something about this ASAP.
  • I won’t get ahead professionally because I don’t do my hair (at least not the way she would like me to keep it done).
  • I could go on, but I think you get the picture.

In short, it was an even more brutal trip than usual, covering a lot more ground and a lot more to the point. I didn’t bother to correct any of these assertions because it doesn’t really matter in the grand scheme of things. Either things will happen as she thinks they will or how I think they will. I didn’t tell her about my decision that before the new year a decision will be made on my relationship with MensHealth, nor did I share that we’ve started pre-marital counseling. I didn’t tell her that I will have paid all of my one time bills, my car, and be all caught up on my bills by the beginning of next year. I didn’t tell her I have no intention, MensHealth and current job or no, to ever move back to that city and I have no desire to work in the group home business, that running a business like that is her dream and not mine, because I realized as she was talking that all of this was not about me, but about her. It makes life easier for her to think of me taking over her business and living closer, of me still needing her advice on how to order my entire life. It makes sense for her to take these positions because they give her a basis from which to order my life in a way that benefits her a lot more than me.

I’m not saying that to say my aunt doesn’t care about me, but let’s look at things realistically: what man am I meeting in her small town? I’m not meeting any. I lived there, so I know. I don’t want to work in a group home or live in this town, so who would that make happy? Certainly not me. I want to pursue getting some certifications in the legal field and to continue writing. One of very few ABA certified programs is down the street from me, and my current job is willing to help me pay for the classes. Why would I give that up for a job a don’t want? I’m sure my aunt loves me and wants what she thinks is best for me, but it’s not what I want for myself at all.

I can’t tell y’all how big of a relief it was to walk into my still-needs-work apartment, turn on Cold Case Files, and eat a piece of well-earned homemade sweet potato pie. As I sat thinking of all the usual things I think about at times like these (why did I even go? What was I thinking? Why didn’t I say…?), I realized something. Being grateful doesn’t make me indebted. When I didn’t have a real plan for how I would be able to finish school with little support and no job, she helped me. I’m so grateful for that. I worked for her for a year full time, and during my last year of school on holidays. I continued to do her paperwork for another year. I have done all I can to show I’m appreciative of what she did for me; I don’t have to feel bad that I am not going to do everything that she thinks I should do with my life.

Another thing I realized is that listening to your elders and respecting their opinions doesn’t mean that you have to take all of their advice. I am a major proponent of seeking the wise counsel of elders when making major life decisions. I respect the fact that outsiders can see things in a relationship that the person in the relationship may not necessarily see. But we are to have discernment, and everyone’s counsel should be measured against God’s word and confirmed; no word should stand all on its own but God’s word. I love my aunt, but at the end of the day, I have to live with the decisions I make.

Family. Gotta love it.

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Taking a Big Step in an Unknown Direction

Warning: Long post ahead

I’ve been struggling with whether or not to share something here. I know, this is my “personal blog,” the blog on which I share all of the personal details that I’m trying to work through as well as personal triumphs and zany TMI questions, but there are some things I don’t know if I should share. It used to be that this blog wasn’t tied to any of my social networking and that only those who gravitated here from blogland (who I didn’t know personally) would read it. I loved the fact that most of you had no personal investment one way or the other and didn’t know us well enough for that to color your opinion. Now, however, it’s a little bit different.

It’s not like you all don’t know some major things about me and this area of my life. You know about the real Decision 2012, my counseling sessions, and my general lack of a filter in some areas. You know what INEBIGTDIA means. You know about my recent wedding blog addiction. You even know a thing or two about my lady bizness. And perhaps this latest thing isn’t even that big of a deal. It’s not like I’ve gotten engaged to or broken up with MensHealth in the last few weeks. It’s not like this is something I never intended to do…

To take some of the pressure off, I am not sharing this on twitter or anywhere else. It’s just a blog post. Just an anonymous drop in the ocean of internet blogging, indistiguishable from so many others (and it would be just my luck that something like this would be freshly pressed! Gah!).

OK, enough putting it off. In the spirit of INEBIGTDIA, I’m just going to say it and get it over with: MensHealth and I are going to be beginning pre-marital counseling. I’ll give you a moment to take in everything I’ve said thus far in this entry so you can fully grasp the “huh?” in that statement.

Got it?

OK.

MensHealth and I (who are not engaged, and at this point are still not sure we WILL get engaged) are heading to pre-marital counseling (aka, counseling to prepare for MARRIAGE). GAH! Who does this?! Here’s how this conversation went:

MH: I have something I want to talk to you about.

2blu: OK.

*I ask what, he says later. I get off work and he picks me up. I complain about my entire day, then remember he wants to ask me something. He says later. We get to my place, and as I am cooking dinner…*

MH: So, how do you feel about us starting pre-marital counseling?

2blu2btru: (bending over and sticking head in the oven) I like pre-marital counseling. I think it’s important to have. *Other slightly inane comments*

MH: This doesn’t mean that we’re getting engaged. *explains how he wants to do pre-marital counseling before engagement, as when he gets engaged, there is no turning back*

2blu: *thinking to myself* Say what?

This is how I feel and what I wanted to say (and did say…most of it):

I think pre-marital counseling is a great idea…for a couple that is going to get married. I don’t know if it has the same effectiveness for someone who hasn’t even decided that they want to get married. If you haven’t decided that you are going to get married and are going to learn any skills you may need to make you’re marriage successful, what are you getting out of it? I know there are people who have gone to pre-marital counseling and have decided not to get married, but really, we’ve been dating nearly five years!

However, I can understand his need to be sure. If going to pre-marital counseling will help him make up his mind about whether or not he wants to move forward with getting engaged, then I’m willing to go. If we were engaged, I would do it. I think it’s a little putting the cart before the horse, but at least both cart and horse are going somewhere.

So, we’ve taken a step in…some direction. We’ll see which one it is soon. But first, St. Augustine, a new camera, and maybe you’ll finally get to see 2blu2btru in the flesh. 😉

XOXO

2blu2btru

MH:

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The Story of Us

I’ve been given an ultimatum on the scrapbook. I was walking along in a park with MensHealth when the subject of the scrapbook came up. It was one of those “you had to be there” moments as I ended up almost crying laughter when he issued me a deadline to be done with the scrapbook. But thinking of this, and trolling Weddingbee while thinking of how I would do certain things, got me thinking about all the fun little details in our story.

If I am going to create a scrapbook, it’s going to be more reading-heavy than the average scrapbook. Part of this is because I am a writer, but a bigger part is because we were long distance for six months. Also, we don’t have many pictures together. But mostly the first two reasons. 😀

Menshealth and I have an ongoing “discussion” on weddings, in which he could care less about them and be just as happy going “to the courthouse” and where those church “nurses” at my aunt’s church would have to carry me off to the quiet room, fanning and getting the smelling salts if that ever happened. I’ve been thinking deeply about my have to haves for such an occasion, and whether or not I’m just being difficult. I am willing to admit that my tastes tend to be on the expensive side. Mind you, this isn’t on purpose, I just have an eye for high quality, well made and pricey things. Even taking this into consideration, I don’t think I’m being over the top in my have-to-haves.

So what do I have to have?

  • A Church of Christ minister to marry us. Church is an integral part of our lives and my faith is so important to me, I can’t pass this up. I’m willing to bend on the ceremony taking place in a church, decorations, singing, reading, wedding march, but not this.
  • At least both of our immediate families there. I think this is beyond important, not only because of how I know I’d feel if my mommy wasn’t there, but also because of how disappointed he told me his parents were when his sister eloped. I think it’s important to them, and I want the people who have been and will be involved in our lives to be there with us, surrounded us with love in that moment.
  • A white dress. I can’t not wear a white dress. I worked HARD to be able to wear a white dress and veil.
  • Premarital Counseling. I believe in being prepared and having thought about things from every angle. Premarital counseling can only help us to see potential problems and correct them, or be more confident in our choice to be married. It also gives us more time to build our relationship with the officiant and get comfortable with him.

Those are the main things that I need. Guest count, venues, color palettes and decorations can all be negotiated. Costs can be brought down. I just want those things that will last longer than the wedding, those memories we can lean on in later years. Family, love, God-ordained nuptials…that’s what I want.

Lately, there have been many walks in the park, a run in the rain, shared laughter, and the struggle of the day to day grind. There has been football and Four Weddings. There have been changes at our jobs. Life continues to keep going. We are still going strong and contriving to have a good time either way. And that’s the best any of us can say.

XOXO

2blu2btru

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4 & 20

In case you’re unaware,  the title of this post comes from a song that Joss Stone (who I love) sang for the soundtrack of Valentine’s Day. Knowing the song only marginally has anything to do with this post.

This post is a check in post on Decision 2012. No, not the presidential election decision, the other important decision to be made this year. We are officially in the last quarter of this year. How am I feeling? What am I doing? How will it all turn out?

To start with, this year hasn’t gone as smoothly as one would like a year of important decision making to go. There have been several things that have taken our individual and/or collective attentions off of the decisions we will have to make. Whether it’s my ever changing job responsibilities, car troubles, not being where we would want to be financially, etc., we have had life get in the way of our plans. But when is this ever not going to be the case?

I haven’t moved my deadline or changed my mind about needing us to come to some sort of decision about our relationship because of these inconveniences. To be honest, that’s how we got here. If things had been exactly like we wanted them and we were actually able to focus more fully on our relationship the past 4 years (and then some), we would either be married, be getting married, or have moved on by now. Life is never going to slow down. The timing is never going to be perfect. This is why premarital counseling is important; it allows you to make a decision you think is best, then really get into the nuts and bolts of how it will work, or if you can make it work at all. At this stage, I don’t know that there’s much left for us to talk about in premarital counseling, let alone things to be worked out! We’ve spent nearly five years talking about it without even deciding if the questions are even necessary.

How do I feel now that things are going down to the wire? A mixture of things. On the one hand, I would like to have a decision made before December 31st. It would seem more “authentic” to me either way if it didn’t come down to the wire. It’s up for debate whether I have the “right” to want authentic when I’m forcing putting a deadline on a decision, but that’s how I feel.

I also feel good in that things will not be dragged into another year of indecision. I don’t like living in limbo. Ending one phase of life at the end of the year and starting new in a new year has a certain symmetry that speaks to me. I will have a good amount of money saved, I will know if I am getting a bonus and what it could be, I will know what my pay raise will be (if any), my lease on my apartment will be up and I can decide if I am moving. At that point I will have enough time saved up to take a week if I need to to recover, and the resources to do so. I can plan a nice intimate wedding or a life changing new endeavor I will be able to devote a significantly larger amount of time and energy towards accomplishing. I’m excited about opening a new chapter in my life either way.

I’m leaving it in God’s hands. I am focusing on writing my book and getting established in my new roles at work. I’m brainstorming on my website. I’m discovering new parks to walk in while I’m thinking. I’m reading more books. I’m finding things to do with my time besides worry about if I’m ever going to get married. I like being back in this space.

XOXO

2blu2btru

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Time is of the Essence: Timing is Everything Pt. 2

What I intended to say Sunday morning when I began writing was about the futility of impatience and wanting things before their time. In our lives, we often proclaim how we “can’t wait” for something to happen: to graduate high school/college, to get our own car, to live on our own, etc. We are often asked when we are finally going to do something: get married, have children, go back to school, lose weight, grow up, etc. It seems everything in our lives, both inside and outside of us, is always telling us to rush, to stay busy. It sometimes escapes us the futility of trying to rush time.

The fact is, even if you think you can’t wait to turn eighteen, you still have to live the clock round until you get there. Many are familiar with Ecclesiastes chapter 3, in which Solomon proclaims that there is a time and a season for everything. He also says that God makes everything beautiful in its time. In order to get the best that God has for us, we have to trust His timing and not our own.

Although this is an encouragement, this is also a warning. When we try to preempt God’s timetable, we only delay those things we so desperately want, settling for inferior versions and not being as happy as we thought we would be once we gained them. When the people of Israel grew tired of waiting for Moses to return from receiving the law from God, they pushed Aaron to make them a god to worship, to give them a purpose and a direction. (Exodus 32) Even though God had promised them a land of their own and had brought them so far already, they were tired of waiting to hear what God had to say through his servant Moses. They thought Moses was never coming back. They needed to do something now.

There are all sorts of depictions of waiting in the Bible, some who wait on the Lord and some who take it upon themselves to do what they feel God is taking too long to do. Sarah, Abraham’s wife, looking at the passage of time and her barrenness up to that time, the unlikeliness of her ever conceiving a child rather than at God’s promise, gave Abraham her maid, thinking that maybe God “meant” for them to have a child that way. All Sarah did was end up being jealous and resentful towards Hagar. She felt the other woman was getting “above her station” and refusing to listen to her because of her newfound position as mother of Abraham’s child.

I’ve been guilty of doing this. I pray to God for something or ask for something, but it seems like time just keeps passing by without anything happening. After a while, it can be tempting to start to try and anticipate  God’s answer, or to try to answer it ourselves in ways we know God didn’t mean for us to. Maybe God hasn’t answered my prayer for a husband because he wants me to put on my sexiest dress and go somewhere I don’t like to be so that men can see me and want to get to know me. I have to go where the men are. Maybe I need to leave this job and step out on faith that God is finally going to grant me my dream job. Maybe, maybe, maybe.

It’s not always that I didn’t know that I was trying to force God’s hand, but that I really wanted what I wanted and I wanted it right now.  I’ve experienced being delayed in life because I was going to do what I wanted to do–with college, with relationships, with my career, etc. I can’t tell you how hardheaded I was! I wanted to go to a certain school and that was it. We had the biggest blackout the Midwest had ever seen, they lost my rental reservation for my moving van, we rode through what seemed like an endless storm that turned day into night it was so dark and perilous, we got stuck in traffic for hours, we arrived after check in time…and I didn’t care. All of that was just a couple of days, let alone all the hardship to get to that point. It just kept getting harder. I couldn’t understand how God could bring me that far just to leave me…until I realized that God didn’t bring me there at all.

As I said yesterday, I get asked all the time when I will be getting married. It’s a hard pill to swallow. It can grate on your self esteem when you begin to wonder why you haven’t been asked. You can be tempted to compare yourself to others and think “I deserve this more than her. She’s this or that and somebody married her.” It would be easy to be more sad and frustrated with each new friend that gets engaged or married instead of being genuinely happy for them. It can be hard to just…wait. But God’s timing is perfect. The truth is, I don’t want to be married to “somebody;” never have, never will. I don’t just want to be married; I want to having a loving, lasting marriage. I want a God given man. I don’t know why people are really getting married and if God has been included in it. I can’t predict whether or not their marriages will be as successful as they hope. What I know for myself is that I want to be made into a wife that can be a help to the type of husband I want. I know that God has a lot for me to do “in the meantime”, as I told my girls in the Purity class I taught. God wants us to trust Him and obey Him, to have a relationship with Him; if that’s not my focus, why should He give me a husband?

A husband or wife is a responsibility. They are a gift from God, but they are a work as well. It is our job to help one another to be closer to God, to live according to His word, to help each other get to Heaven. If I can’t even listen to Him single, when I can be totally devoted to the Lord…?

I have so much to say about waiting and patience. I even started a draft about this very thing that has nothing to do with the subject of this post. I can’t say it all in two posts. For now, suffice it to say that God’s timing is perfect. I won’t be a Sarah, losing heart and taking things into my own hands, only to end up upset and embittered by it. I will wait on the Lord. Timing is everything, after all.

XOXO

2blu2btru

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Timing is Everything

Promotional poster for W. S. Gilbert's Engaged.
Promotional poster for W. S. Gilbert’s Engaged. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I don’t have time to write this post, or I should say maybe I should write this post another time. I’ve been thinking about it for a while now, though, and it isn’t going to be any different if I wait to write it, so why not jump in with both feet?

Another two friends are engaged and I’m super annoyed. Wait, that didn’t come out right. Let’s try that again: 1) Two of my friends are engaged. 2) I’m super annoyed. Those two thoughts, while linked, are not continuous. I’m not annoyed my friends are engaged; after about six years in the “window” for engagements, marriages, and first babies, this is nothing new for me. I love the fact that people are getting married and creating families. It’s a blessing from God. I would love to celebrate these happy occasions, fawning over rings and baby pictures, hearing about how he proposed and how you decided on a baby name, etc, only…something else happens.

Whenever anyone else at church gets engaged or married, and this has happened…a solid five times in four years, instead of being allowed time to congratulate the person and get all the feminine details that we like so much, I’m almost assaulted by people wanting to know when I will be getting married. Where is my ring? What is the problem? Why can’t you close the deal and lock this in?

Don’t believe that people would be that rude impolite as to steal the spotlight from its rightful owner just to interrogate question me? Example: A friend at church got engaged after the Heat won the NBA championship (I have no idea how those two things are related because…well, you’ll see). Yesterday was the first time I’d seen her since I saw the announcement on facebook, and it wasn’t public knowledge around church yet. As soon as Sunday School was over, I began talking to her (we usually sit together in service). First order of business is to see the ring. So as she is showing me the ring, another sister walks up to say hello to us. She sees my friend in the classic “take a look at this rock” posture and asks if she’s interrupting something. My friend tells her that she just got engaged last week. The sister congratulates her, admires the ring…then searches my finger for a ring. Um, what?

The above is not the only time this happened yesterday, and the two or three “someone else is engaged; why not you” finger searches aren’t the only ones I had in the past week. I’ve had no less than 5 references to my unchanged marital status in seven days. As a matter of fact, when I started this post Sunday morning, it was going in a completely different direction because I was going to reflect on the other questions and talk about timing in that respect. But life happened and here we are.

The boyfriend, MensHealth, and I have discussed this phenomenon, and we both agree that it is a little rude impolite to take the spotlight off of the couple that is celebrating their very new engagement. One guy even proposed at the church after morning services, and instead of rushing to congratulate them, a lady hit me for my lack of engagement! (Don’t believe me? Read it here) If I ever do get engaged, I would love to have the opportunity to get all girly and tell people how it happened, show off my ring, talk about when we plan on getting married and answer all the other questions newly engaged people are asked. I would actually have something to say in that situation. I wouldn’t want someone to say “oh, congratulations,” then turn to Dorothy* and say “Now when areyou going to get married, Dorothy?”

MensHealth brought up an interesting point. He sees that I get most of the brunt of these cross examinations questions, which is what upsets him more. The fact of the matter is, us ladies don’t ask ourselves. I end up floundering for something to say. How can you answer why no one has proposed to you yet? MensHealth doesn’t like this because it seems to place the emphasis or onus on me, as if I must be somehow defective because after (4 1/2) years, I can’t seem to lock this relationship in, but for me the other issue is there’s really no way to say “you can’t blame me; I’m not the one holding this up” without putting blame on him, nor can I honestly say “I’m not even thinking about getting married.” The fact that people are “passing us”– i.e. people who began dating after us are getting engaged and married before we are even engaged–only adds fuel to the fire. Just what is the hold up?

What I should have said/wanted to say: I wanted to say “Really? This isn’t even about me; it’s about Jenny. As for me and my relationship, mind your business, or get you some business, whichever applies. I’ll get engaged when I get engaged and you will be the first to know.” But I’d never say that. It’s truthful, but it’s mean, and most people aren’t trying to be rude when they say these things. I should have said, “No, I’m not engaged; however, Jenny is engaged. Isn’t that wonderful news? Let’s celebrate this happy time with her and Craig*. She was just about to tell me how Craig proposed.”

How would you have handled this situation? Does this ever happen to anyone else?

Maybe tomorrow I’ll actually get to the original point of this post.

~2blu2btru

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Putting 26 Away Nicely…

Remember when people used to plan to “put (themselves) away nice”? They had their insurance policy in an easy to get to place, picked out their casket and what they wanted to wear to their funeral. They didn’t want their family to have to worry about anything when they died except grieving and moving on. Well, that’s what I would like to do for my 26 year old self. I want to put it away nicely without leaving a bunch of things for 27 to deal with later.

Even though I feel fine, my health quite possibly sucks. I say quite possibly because I have no idea. I haven’t been to the doctor since…well, that depends on what you mean by been to the doctor. If we are talking about a primary care physician…we have to go back to like 16 or 17. I’ve seen the people in PUSH (student health center) and at Centra Care a couple of times, but I haven’t been to a general physician in a LONG time. Confession: I’ve never been to the “lady doctor”–not once. Not. Good.

So, I’m scheduling a check up for myself. I need one. I have night terrors. If you have no idea what those are, look it up; you will probably be a bit horrified. The short version is feeling like you’re dying in your sleep and you can’t wake up. So, I’m going to find a primary physician and make an appointment. I’m not excited, but I’m going to do it anyway (INEBIGTDIA).

Several things have fallen under the INEBIGTDIA category lately. I guess that’s part of being a “grown up”? I’ve been having a lot of conversations that I’d rather not have, confronting situations I’d rather bury my head in the sand on. Trying to clear the way for 27 to have a better life than 26 had. It’s not just the health thing, although I have been going to the gym and cooking more at home. It’s pulling out all of the bills and making a plan to get back on track financially. It’s discussing with MensHealth where this relationship is going. It’s trying to advance at work and learn transferable skills. It’s growing spiritually, moving closer to God.

There’s a lot that I could say about my relationship, my friendships, my financials, my health, my faith, my year. I want to make sure I say the most important things here. The most important things are these:

  • Even though it’s been a hard year, it’s been a growing experience.
  • I could have done a lot better than I did in some areas, but that means there is room for improvement.
  • I made some great strides in the year of 26 professionally.
  • I was a lot less selfish, doing things that had no benefit to me personally other than the feeling of being the change I wanted to see.
  • I’m still not married.
  • I got to see my little brother graduate from high school
  • I finally did something about (half of ) my teeth, including surviving an extraction.
  • My focus wasn’t always where it should have been.
  • I didn’t take care of myself nearly enough…and it became evident that this needs to change.
  • I finally learned to speak up for myself a bit without stepping on someone else.

I have high expectations for 27. I am going to push 27 to be better than 26. No company ever brings out a model that has more problems than the previous model;  the goal is for each model to be a vast improvement on the first. I’m excited to see what this year has in store, even if it’s a little intimidating, with a lot of  INEBIGTDIA.

Any advice you want to give me about turning 27? Want to wish me an early happy birthday (my birthday is TOMORROW)? Want to inspire me with how you changed your life? Leave me a comment, or email me at 2blu2btru4u@gmail.com.

2blu2btru

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Making an Appointment

I’m doing something “we” aren’t supposed to do: I’m going to see my friendly neighborhood licensed mental health counselor, Mrs. Jung-Freud. You may remember her from my other blog where she answered some of my questions about the psychological impact of marriage. I’m not going back for a further discussion about marriage, however. I’m going back for an actual session.

I’ve actually “done a session” with her before with MensHealth once, an impromptu session early on in our relationship that was pretty productive. However, this will be my first time talking to a counselor one on one for  a purpose other than an interview.

I find that I don’t have the type of friends that you can tell all your business to without a) hearing it in the streets (usually from people I expressly didn’t want to know about it), b) hearing it referred to in some snarky comment when they are mad, or c) listening to them tell me what to do. Counselors, on the other hand, can’t share your business abroad (Thanks to HIPPA laws, etc), and usually don’t tell you what to do so much as help you come to your own conclusions. To me, the unschooled layman, it sounds like having the best friend a girl can have outside the heavenly realm.

I am looking forward to an opportunity to focus on me and get a clearer vision of how I want my life to look independent of other people. I’ve made some great steps in moving my life forward, setting some boundaries, etc, but it’s time to make some more. Perhaps it’s time to cut some of those “jelly fisher” friends and people who seem to delight in my downturns of fortune; as my life is starting to come together, they won’t have much use for me anyway (and I have no use for them).

I probably won’t share many details about the session (except maybe in some password protected entries), but I wanted to share that I’m doing this because I think the stigma has to be overcome. I am a major proponent of counseling. My aunt is a counselor (that I’d never go to; too close a relation…but she’s a good counselor). I wanted to be a relationship counselor. I have worked with behavioralist and psychiatrists as well as psychologist. I always push pre-marital counseling and marriage education. There’s nothing wrong with getting another perspective. It doesn’t mean that you are screwed up or hearing voices. It means you want an objective person who isn’t interested in trying to get you to take their advice or use your experience for dinner conversation to help you gain a little clarity.

How do you feel about counseling? Ever been to a counselor? Do you use your friends as counselors? How do you take care of your mental health?

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For the First Time in A Long Time…

For the first time in a long time, I hear that tiny voice whispering “maybe it’s just not meant to be.” What “it” is depends on when you catch me:

Maybe I’m not meant to run a 5K, let alone a half marathon.

Maybe I’m not meant to be published again in my lifetime; maybe I’m not meant to write books.

Maybe I’m not meant to marry.

Maybe my life isn’t meant to be any more than it is right now.

It’s not too often that I get maudlin or let these types of thoughts overtake me, but it’s been a rough few months one way and another since I returned from my trip home. It’s sad that after the big revelation I had there (which you can read about in a guest blog on Monday over at Cordelia Calls It Quits) I am now financially behind, having career growth envy, and generally feeling stuck. I’m fast sliding into “I don’t care” territory, which is a scary place to be. It feels as if someone hit pause on my life, and I can’t get it moving again.

I’m frustrated. Not much rattles me, but the last few days, I’ve felt rattled. I know it will all work out & come right in the end, but it’s just one of those times when I want to sneak a peek ahead and see how it all works out.

My co-workers & I are going to the gym for CX Worx and cardio. I’m hoping a little endorphin action will lift my funk. How do you get over your blues? I’ve got a good workout with coworkers, my favorite meal, and a movie on tap.