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Gutted Like a Fish…The Aftermath

So, I needed some parts removed.

(WARNING: this may be a bit TMI for some!) To catch you up if you haven’t read that post, I have suffered with bad periods my whole life.  I even started on birth control pills at a young age to try to curb my periods and make them more manageable.  After having my two kids, I decided I wanted to stay off the pills, and went back to a life of periods.  I soon realized that it was going to be a pretty miserable time for me.

Every month, my periods would show up nice and light for a day or so.  “No biggie” I would think to myself. Oh, how wrong I was.  Within 3 days, I was a walking crime scene.  I began buying ultra Tampax and giant pads.  Have you seen an Ultra Tampax?  That thing is NO JOKE.  This is the biggest size they have and I would go through them in under a half an hour.  It was HORRIBLE.  I was told I have fibroids, and combined with an already heavy period, the situation wasn’t going to improve.  I also notice my PMS was getting worse.  I would become RAGE-Y.  Like, all out rage would consume me every month.  I have yet to determine if this was in fact PMS or just dealing with idiots.  I suspect perhaps my tolerance levels for stupidity were just lower.  Either way, I wasn’t feeling like myself anymore.  Off to the doctor I went.  I had a biopsy, and another test, where they found I also have a polyp.  My uterus must have been a magic garden for growing babies, fibroids, polyps, etc.  After all was said and done, my doctor walked into my follow up appointment and asked me “so how do you feel about a hysterectomy?”

At first, I was surprised.  I had expected her to mention a different type of procedure, or other options. What, exactly, I wasn’t sure.  What I wasn’t expecting was dismantling my insides.  I asked her about the recovery time.  “4-6 weeks” was her response.  Now look, if any of you are parents, you know that being down for 4-6 weeks is about the least optimal idea possible.  Not to mention my husband works opposite hours than I do, so I am basically alone with the kids every afternoon and night.  My husband is also self employed, meaning if he doesn’t go to work, he doesn’t get paid.  This would present a major issue.  How would we manage?  I must have looked dismayed, because she said “we could also try managing the issues with meds”.  So that was what we decided to do.

One month later, I was curled in a ball with such bad cramping I thought I might have to go to the hospital.  I had never felt anything like it.  The idea of going through that every month was not an option.  “Time to take out the parts” was my battle cry.  My Dr sent me for genetic testing.  Effectively, I have cancer throughout my family on both sides, and if I had a genetic issue for cancer, the doctor said she would take my ovaries.  Without, she wanted to leave them, as they help prevent against things like dementia, which also runs in my family.  “So I can get cancer or forget who I am?  Those are my options?” I said.  “pretty much.” she responded with a laugh.  Luckily, my genes are in good shape, so I got cleared for surgery.

I booked my surgery for the new year, so I would have some sick time to use.  My company has short term disability insurance, but it doesn’t kick in until the 8th day, so I would need some sick or paid time off to manage.  I booked it for January 10th.  I tried to make myself look forward to it.  All hell broke lose when my company switched insurance companies for the new year.  I was in a frantic panic trying to get an ID card from the new company and they were slow to get me into their system.  Luckily, at the 11th hour, all was set, and off to the hospital we went.

When I was waiting to go in, my dr came in and went over the procedure.  It would be a laparoscopic assisted vaginal hysterectomy, taking my uterus and fallopian tubes, but leaving everything else. I got stern warnings not to have sex or put anything into the vagina for 6 weeks.  She mentioned that it can cause vaginal prolapse and mentioned something about the intestines coming out through the vagina.  Now I don’t know about you, but I heard about intestines falling out and must have looked HORRIFIED.  She tried to calm my fears but because I have a touch of OCD, that image and thought was burned into my brain.

Off to surgery I went.  I woke up (Yay!) after it was all over, not too sore, and not in more pain (post meds) than I could handle.  I even got a private room, which I was SUPER hoping for.  Now, full disclosure, I know that during this surgery, they put air in you to extend things, and what air goes in, must come out.  This means that it can leave you super farty, and no way in hell was I going to be comfortable blowing foghorn farts in front of  stranger.  I told my Dr these and she about fell over laughing.  “That’s what’s worrying you?” she asked.  My response “I have poop and fart shame.”  My husband looked at me with that “you don’t seem to be shameful at farting at home” look.

I stayed one night in the hospital.  Once I got into the room I slept a LOT.  I kept dozing in and out, and had super vivid dreams.  The next morning, I felt a bit better, and came home.  Once I got home, I spent about a week living the potato life.  I got up and walked around quite a bit, but I spent much of it in bed.  I watched the entire Downtown Abbey season in a week (marathon achievement unlocked!) I had a couple of days where I felt inexplicably weepy.  I know that some women feel depressed about hysterectomies.  This can be especially difficult for women who wanted children still, or those who mourned their loss of ability to have children suddenly.  For me, I had a few moments of questioning my decision.  Had I done wrong by removing and organ to stop the bleeding?

This troubled me for a day or so.  Then I began thinking of the day I was at the pediatricians office with my daughter, coughed, and realized that my jeans were suddenly soaked with blood.  Tons of blood. It was mortifying.  I remembered all the days I had needed to stay home because of the problematic periods.  I thought about the fibroids and now a polyp I was dealing with.  It seemed like things would only get worse.  I have decided for my quality of life, I made the right decision.

2 weeks in, I feel pretty good.  The incision sites are a bit sore.  I had what felt like a ligament pain the other day on the right hand side.  I literally rolled over in bed and yelped in pain.  (It’s a sad state of affairs when you hurt yourself rolling over).  I was a bit concerned at first but I have my two week follow up appointment in two days, so I’ll ask the dr about it.  I can walk and move.  If I do too much, I get sore, and sometimes I get the dreaded “swelly belly” where my stomach gets bloated and I look a lil pregnant.  I think that’s one of the things I hate the most, is the bloated feeling.  I can’t eat as much as I used to, which hey, could be a great thing!  The first few days I felt a lot of pressure, probably as my organs shifted around and found their new spots.  One delightful new aspect is that my bladder seems bigger than before.  I’ve always had a “little tank” and it’s a bit of a joke I always had to pee constantly, but now I feel like I don’t have to go nearly as much, despite drinking a TON of fluids the past 2 weeks.

My husband took the first few days off to look after me, but since he went back on the 6th day after surgery, I have managed well.  He did leave work to pick the kids up from school, so I only just drove for the first time the other day.  I know, I know, I’m not supposed to drive yet, but I only drive a couple of blocks to get the kids or to the store in a pinch.

So there you have it.  I made it through, and honestly, it wasn’t too bad!


Chubby Malificient

Halloween is over.  Halloween is a massive holiday in my house, probably my husband’s favorite.  We decorate the house, pull out all the animatronics, and do it up.  We also dress up, have family dress up, and we haunt the neighborhood.  We typically get several hundred kids a year trick or treating.

This year, my “Descendants 2” obsessed daughter wanted to go as Mal, and asked me to go as Malificient.  Now, Malificient is one of my favorite movies, but I wasn’t really feeling it for Halloween.  That being said, my daughter is only a few years away from being mortified by my very existence, and I know this. She will head into the pre teens, embarrassed by me, as most kids are.  I know I have to soak up every moment of her being proud of me now, as I may need those memories to cling to later.

So I get myself a costume.  And to be fair, a lot of kids and parents liked it.  Some kids trick or treating  even asked me to take photos with them!  I felt rather honored. I felt pretty cute in my costume, and was pretty pleased with how it came out.

Then I saw the pictures.


I looked HUGE. After they cancelled my aqua zumba class that I loved, I stopped going to the Y.  The kids’ activities were taking up 7 days a week and there was no time for me.  My weight loss from the “year of yes” has crept back since it’s been the summer of “I can’t my kids have practice”.  It’s not their fault, it all belongs squarely onto my shoulder, and chins, and I could go on but it’s depressing me……

Tomorrow is my 25th high school reunion.  I’m going, even though I had to leave sophmore year because we moved.  I went to middle school and high school with these folks, and I’d like to see them again. I am less, enthused, however, after seeing those pictures of myself.  How did I let myself go like this?  Granted, I haven’t gained 20 lbs over the summer, but it shows that I am not looking after myself properly.  I look tired, my skin looks drab, and I have thrown a few lbs back on.  I feel like I have lost my luster.  Add to that the medical stuff, and I feel so DRAINED.  I need to get back on track, and take better care of myself.

My daughter sees me only as Mommy.  The mommy who loves her unconditionally, the mommy who sings her awake every morning with silly songs.  I am the giver of hugs, the one who makes sure things are handled.  I am her soft place to land after a hard day.  I suppose I would like to be less physically  My decision to consider surgery in the next few months is based on trying to keep myself healthy for my kids and my husband.  It’s time I started making better choices, taking baby steps, and getting my butt in gear.  The first step is the hardest.

I don’t want to be chubby malificient.

Good Deeds and One Decision

Every now and again, I try to do a kind deed.  Whether it be buying coffee for the person behind me at Dunkin Donuts, or doing a little surprise for a stranger.  Usually I do it when I am having a horrible day, not because because I feel I will get repaid in any sort of way, but because the thought of making someone smile a little brings a little spark to an otherwise crapfest of a day.  Usually I do things where I won’t see the person’s reaction, and I’d like to think it’s a happy one.  I feel like when the world seems like it’s in chaos, a little kindness feels grounding.  Mr Roger’s said his mom told him to “look for the helpers”.  I’d like to be a helper.  My husband is a helper.  He sometimes gives money to panhandlers and when I have asked him why he gives knowing they are often scammers, he gave me an answer that stuck with me.  He said it’s your intent when you give a hand, not their intent.  He gives freely, with no expectations, with no judgement. He grew up volunteering at a homeless shelter.  Giving is in his nature.

Yesterday I dropped the kids off to school, and promptly saw the gas light was on in the car.  I headed over to the gas station, only to see that they couldn’t accept cards, so I went to the one across the street (why the put identical businesses across the street is beyond me, but yesterday I was rather thankful for it.  I went in my bag to get my card out and a face appeared at my window.  I won’t lie, it unnerved me.  I sat there, unsure what to do.  I cracked the window and the man started telling me his story.  Said his car had broke down near the highway and he needed a new serpentine belt.  Said his AAA wasn’t paid up, and that he needed $16 dollars to get a new one (he had taken the max atm withdrawal out. but was short.  It was a scam.  I knew he was bullshitting me.  At first I was afraid he wanted a ride and I said I was sorry, but no way could I put a stranger in my car.  He laughed and said no way would he expect that. He was just trying to raise $16 dollars.  He told me about his job, handed me his passport, which looked dogeared.  The name he gave me matched the passport, and the picture matched his face.   Even though I knew I was likely being lied to, I gave him the money.  He handed me a piece of paper with his email, and he left.  I went to put gas in the car, and as I did so, I watched him run across to the other gas station, grab a backpack, and hope on a white bike.  I watched him ride off.  I wasn’t sure what to think.  Clearly, his story was bogus if he had a bike nearby.  I felt sad.  Not for the fact I had been scammed, because I had surmised it was a scam all along.  I felt sad because he had needed to do it.  Normal people don’t go around scamming people.

Later than day, I pulled out the paper with the email address.  It was a name@gmail type of email, so I looked up the name.  My friends nicknamed me Angela Lansbury a few years ago because I could “find” or “locate” people.  I found it a relaxing hobby, and was able to find some long lost relatives for friends of mine.  In the age of computers, it’s not all that hard to do.  I found his facebook profile.

What I saw was a bit shocking. I saw he had been arrested a few times for trespassing and possession. That fell in line with the scam.  Then I sawwe  grew up in the same town.  He was clearly at some point quite affluent, as there were pictures of him on his boat, at a yacht club, and info about his business.  I also saw that he was facebook friends with some of my friends.  Interestingly, he was friends with my old ex, who wasn’t on my facebook page, but who I saw on his friends list.  It was utterly bizarre.  Was his story real after all?  He appeared to be much more affluent than I was.   I messaged one of our mutual friends who had ended up dating my ex for some time after he and I split.

She responded to me this morning.  Her story was an interesting one.  Apparently this guy had lived with her and my ex for a while.  They were really good friends.  Then over time he started acting off and got into drugs.  He left and struggled with addiction.  He would pull himself out of it, and then fall back in.  He had cleaned up for a while, gotten married, and then his wife passed.  She told me that I had done a kind thing, but that he had likely sunk back into drugs.  It seemed odd because recent facebook posts had him seemingly on the ok track.

I’m left saddened.  The fact is, I may have met him in my younger years.  We clearly hung around the same people.  He was obviously doing quite well for himself, and now is left asking a check to check mom of two for money.  I feel a bit foolish for giving it.  I feel like I may have enabled him, which makes me feel like my good deed fell to a bad one.  Mostly, I feel just sad.

I have always told people “you are always just one small decision from a whole new life”.  I have told my children this, and I believe it.  One small decision can change one’s whole path in life, either for the better, or for the worse.  I tell my children this so that they will be mindful of consequences, but also so that they know that no matter how bad life gets, a small decision can set you on a new path to a happier life.  In other words, you can always change your life if you aren’t happy. I wonder how some choices ended him up in that gas station parking lot.

Part of me wants to email him and just let him know that I hope he’ll be ok in life.  Part of feels like I need to let it go.



Going Out With Fewer Parts Than I Started With

“How do you feel about a hysterectomy?” the Dr asked me.

I blinked quickly a few times, surprised by the question.  Sure, I had some severely heavy bleeding during my periods.  I knew I had fibroids, and they had just found a polyp.  My PMS was getting worse by the month, causing me severe cramping, which I’d never had before, and rage filled mood swings that made me feel unlike myself.  I was done having children, as I’m already of “advanced maternal age”, as I had sadly seen written on my last maternity chart.  But a hysterectomy?  That hadn’t been something that had crossed my mind.  I thought maybe they would do a D&C, or take the polyp out.  No, they wanted to take the whole kit and kaboodle out too.

Actually, that’s not entirely true.  Initially, the Dr said “we’d leave your ovaries, as they will help prevent things like dementia.  I nodded.  Both of my grandmothers had dementia, and it always frightened me a bit that I might get it too.  My memory is pretty awful as it is, never mind when I grow old!  Keeping the ovaries might help prevent it. Thumbs up to that!

“Oh, wait,” she said, looking at my chart again, “your family history shows a lot of cancer.  Are there really this many people who had cancer?” I nodded.  Both parents, three out of 4 grandparents, a semi estranged uncle who mentioned he had a tumor,  a great aunt.  The odds are working against me.  “We may need to take the ovaries too”, she said.  “Oh great, so it looks like I will possibly get cancer or forget who I am!” I laughed.  I must have looked nervous because she also offered to try to treat the issues I am having with meds for now.

A week in, I hate the meds.  They are some sort of birth control/hormone thing that I struggle to remember taking.  I feel slightly “off” on them and I don’t think they will be a good fit for me long term.  Surgery looks like it may be in the cards.  The only issue is, how does a full time working mom of 2 kids with a husband who is self employed working opposite hours take that kind of time off?  The Drs have said it could be 2-6 weeks.  I think I’ll be on the shorter end of it, as I tend to heal well and have had 2 c-sections before.  After the C sections I was walking and cleaning up (yes, CLEANING!) in no time.  Even still, I am scared of taking that kind of time off.

Not to too my own horn too much, but I am the scheduler, the planner, and the hub of the family.  I manage where everyone needs to be, how they get there, and what they need.  I plan the minutia of the day, keeping everyone in the loop, and calling for help from family when I get stuck.  With my husband’s schedule, most transportation and execution of tasks falls to me.  One of the ways I scare the kids to get stuff done like cleaning their rooms is to tell them I may go on strike.  If Mommy goes on strike, they know things will be chaos.  Taking myself out of the loop for even 2 weeks is going to be a strain on the family.  My husband is awesome and will step up to help. I have also had family offer to help in however they are needed.  I am super lucky to have them.

So there it is.  First there will be genetic counseling to try to get a handle on my genetic risk for cancer.  Based on that, the dr’s will make a recommendation about how much to remove.  I guess the nice thing will be no more heavy bleeding, and also I might even lose a pound or

More to come.

Catch up time

Hi Y’all.

It’s been a while.  I’ve actually logged in and started writing, but never finished a post, or just never clicked the publish button.  I miss writing though, and it felt like the time to catch up.

So from my past posts you saw I was trying out the whole “living the yes life”.  I tried saying yes rather than no to new opportunities and events.  It was fun, I learned a lot, I enjoyed myself, and I even lost some weight.  Things were trucking along.  Then my favorite excercise class got cancelled.  Summer showed up with birthdays most weekends.  Work geared up with new challenges.  Life got busy with too much yes.  So now I am learning how to gracefully say no to some things.  It’s a learning process, because no so often comes with that thing called guilt, and I am no so good at handling the guilt aspect of it.

One of my biggest “yes” moment this year was allowing my son to sign up for football. I love football, and buy tickets for us to go to NFL games as our “romantic trip” each year. That being said, I learned that it’s a different feeling altogether sending my son out on the field.  The time commitment is huge…5 nights a week, plus games on weekends.  He asked me to do it.  He wanted to do something new this year, and had been showing a lot of interest in football.  Each of the kids choose one sport/activity per season.  I’ve offered them to do more than one, but they generally prefer to stick to one thing.  This one is the work of 7 activities.

When I learned of the schedule, my brain wanted to bleed out onto the floor.  As it is I work full time, have another child who does gymnastics that I have to coordinate for, 2 pets, a husband and a house that is the messiest it has ever been.  I am in chaos. A LOT of chaos.  Now there are many of you out there who handle all of these with no problem.  You are skilled, and oraganized, neat freakish and super moms.

I am not any of those things.

I am a domestic fail, tired (hot DAMN I am so tired), I am figuring out this mom thing as I go, and I do it mostly by myself since my husband works opposite hours.  It’s not pretty, it’s not graceful, but I get a lot of it done.  Not ALL mind you, hence the messy house.  I am that mom screeching into the parking lot at the last minute with kids still putting cleats on, or me jumping out to quickly braid hair before gymnastics. That movie Bad Moms?  Yep.  That would be me.

Now I have spent 11 years protecting my son.  Keeping him safe. When a kid shoved him a playground I close talked that kid and told him not to lay one single finger on my kid again (I love a good close talk when you need to get a message across). Now, by his choice, I am sending him out on a field to be shoved and pushed and knocked down. Coaches are gruff.  He’s going to get banged up and bruised.  I have to stand or sit there and hold it together and not want to run out and snap legs when someone hurts him.  I have to remain tough and straight faced.  It is just so HARD.  The only reason I do it is because he seems to kind of love it.  Even on the hard days.  Yesterday was hard.  He went down and didn’t get right back up.  He was hurt.  He was frustrated. He questioned his ability to do it all.  He came home, and I fussed over him a little.  He let me.  In the car this morning I reminded him that not everything will come easily to him.  He’s always been that kid that’s learned things quickly. I reminded him of his frustration when he tried a Rubik’s cube.  He had gotten so angry at his inability to solve it.  I had explained to him at the time that most people couldn’t solve them, but that I knew someone who could, and there were certain tricks to solve them.  He sat down and damn if he didn’t teach himself how.  Before long, he was testing himself on speed of solving it.  He reached in his bag this morning and low and behold, was his Rubik’s cube.  Before long he was quickly working on solving it.  mI asked him “do you still want to continue with football? do you still kind of love it?”  He said yes. So today we go again. I will proudly watch him succeed, and I will proudly watch him fail sometimes too, because the kid is giving it his all.

The little one, who I have always referred to as Tiny Diva in this blog, has lost a lot of her Diva-ness.  She had been a tough cookie from 2-4, but she has now settled in to herself. I’ll call her LM, for Little Mama.  Gymnastics has been a huge saving grace.  My sister in law noticed how flexible LM was and mentioned she might be good at gymnastics.  I signed her up, and the benefits have been enormous.  My daughter, who was struggling in school with some self confidence issues, started picking up steam and having more faith in herself.  She has better self esteem, more confidence, and has a good body image.  We talk a lot about being strong and healthy, and that happy girls are pretty girls.  My favorite shirt of hers has the words “princess” and “diva” crossed out, and it says “SMART, TALENTED GIRL”.  The girl who used to pretend like she didn’t know things is coming out of her shell.  She is learning the fine line between being a leader, and being bossy.  Sometimes, it’s a difficult conversation to have.  Women are often told that if they are leaders, they are bitches, bossy, a nag, etc.  Growing up, I remember being told not to voice my opinions so much, to be quite, to fade into the background more.  I’m working on finding a good way to explain how to be a leader, without being bossy and making other kids feel like she’s ordering them around.

Our beloved cat passed away a few months ago.  I had to make the decision to put her down.  She had cancer.  It was heartbreaking.  We all felt the loss, even the dog.  He seemed down and I often wondered if he knew she had died.  He didn’t quite seem himself.  Our family seemed incomplete to me after a while, and I started looking at Petfinder to see if any cats “called” to me. I scrolled through endless pictures over a few weeks until I found a cat that caught my eye.  He was an orange tabby, about 6 months to a year old.  He looked stoned.  He reminded me of the comedian Jim Breuer.  Someone had put him in a box, duct taped it, and left him outside of a store on March 11th.  I was in a wedding that day, and I remember it being bone chillingly cold when the wind blew. I felt awful for this poor cat.  I emailed about him.  I told my husband who seemed less than inclined to get another cat.  “I want you to come with me to see him” I said.  He didn’t sound thrilled.  I said “he kind of looks like Jim Breuer”.  “What time are we going?” he replied.  When I commented I was surprised in his change of heart, he responded “You just told me the cat looks like Jim Breuer, how could I not go meet him?”.  We drove all the way up to the rescue, only to find out the cat had gone to the vet for not eating.  After a few days, the rescue called and asked if I wanted to foster him.  They thought the cat might be depressed in the shelter environment and wanted to see if he would improve in a home environment.  Well, let me tell you, the cat eats more than the dog.  He’s now a member of the family.  He’s a nutjob, full of energy, and wants love the most when anyone is in the bathroom.  He will knock on the bathroom door to come in, and even try to turn the handle to get in.  Every night he and the dog go to each kid’s room to say goodnight.  He fits right in.

So there you have it.  Life right now is about preparing for school starting, football, work, gymnastics, football, pet hair creating tumbleweeds in my house, football and trying to get things done.  It’s a happy time, if not chaotic.  Just like my son is learning something new, I am learning a new schedule, new ways to make it work.  Anything that brings more chaos is just not something I have time for.  I’m keeping things as bare bones as possible, and I’ll work up from there. In just 3 weeks my whole schedule changes again.  So that mom cheering wildly on the sidelines, or from the balcony at gymnastics? The one holding a vat of coffee?  That will be me. I may be in chaos for a while, but it’s a happy chaos.





11 Years.

In just a few days, it will have been 11 years since my mom died.  I can hardly believe it.  So much has happened in those 11 years.  While most of my huge life changes happened in the few months before she died (birth of my son, marriage, new home, back to work), life has kept moving.  My father eventually remarried.  I went through many stages of grief.  I had my daughter.  Life keeps moving forward, and it seems so strange to me at times that it has.  The moment when you lose a parent is the moment that life stops for a bit.  A part of you goes with them.  The part that is your endless cheerleader.  The part that made you feel like it would be ok during times when it felt anything but.  The part that was your calm from the storm.  The part that made sure you had a cup of tea after a car accident, because tea has to make you feel better.  The part that when you heard their voice when life was the toughest, would make you cry.

I was lucky.  While there were bumps in the road along the way,  my mom and I had a great relationship when I became an adult.  She was my first phone call when life happened, good or bad.  We made each other laugh.  I know not everyone has that kind of relationship with their parents, so I know how lucky I am to have had it.

It’s odd, because as each year passes, each anniversary of her death hits me in a completely different way.  Last year seemed a bit easier.  This year seems to be hitting me a bit harder.  I try very hard to take the grief more private.  I know it makes people around me feel a bit awkward.  I know this seems ironic because I’m writing about it in a blog, which is out there for the world to see, but supposedly this is a bit more anonymous.  I’m not ashamed of missing her, of having some moments of grief for my loss, but it does make others feel at a bit of a loss for words.  I have many strong women around me who have fantastic relationships with their moms. It brings me a lot of joy to see, but of course, I miss having that myself.

This year, it is a bit more difficult that some years past.  It doesn’t make much sense why.  I plan on turning it around a bit and doing some things to celebrate her life.  (She’d probably tell me to celebrate by cleaning my messy  I want to find ways to incorporate her memory into a fun activity for the kids.  I can keep her memory alive with stories and pictures for them, but it’s always nice to do a fun thing in her memory with them.  She’d want me to laugh, to celebrate.  This is the woman said she thought we should play “ding dong the witch is dead” at her funeral.

So, if you stumble across my litte blog, do something kind in memory of a woman who always befriended the new kid in class, and who looked after those who felt alone.  When she died I heard many a story of how my mom always reached out to the lonely folks or people who needed a friend.  Reach out, make someone who feels unseen feel seen and heard.  Buy someone a coffee, lend a hand.  Listen to someone who feels their voice goes unheard.  Give your kids ice cream before dinner.  Do something, anything, to make someone smile.  Give a little of yourself.  Do something on your bucket list. Help someone else do something on their bucket list.  LIVE!


Living the “Yes” life.

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I know it’s been a while since I posted.  I’ve been pretty busy.  Yes, yes, I know that is what everyone says, but in this case, it’s true!  Aside from the usual working mother of 2, wife, and the normal day to day chaos, I have been trying very hard to live the “yes” life.  I thought perhaps it’s time to do an update on how it’s going.

I started this after lamenting about the extra weight that has cropped up on my the past 10 years or so.  After mulling it over and feeling a bit sorry for myself, a memory of a conversation I had with my mother popped in my head.  She once told me how proud she was of me for my determination and independence.  I remember her telling me how I seemed to just set my mind to things and DO them.  It seemed logical that I could apply this mentality to losing some weight.  I talked myself into it.  I COULD do it.  I just needed to set my mind to it, and to make a plan.  I realized I am not a big fan of the gym, but I like being active.  The first thing I did was start going to an Aqua Zumba class on Mondays.  You know what?  I LOVE it.  LOOOVVVVEEEE it.  It makes me feel great and I have a good time.  I actually look forward to Mondays…how is that even possible?  The AZ class led me to take a deep water fit class.  I started losing a bit of weight.  I realized, now that I was a bit more active, that much of my problem thus far was that I wasn’t doing much at all before I started the classes.  I had gotten up, dropped the kids off, and gone to work all day.  Then I would come home, get the kids fed and ready for bed, and then watched TV.  I wasn’t doing much for me.

I needed to make some changes, and it started with the mindset that I would say “yes” more.  Because I was saying yes more, I felt less guilty when I had to say no.  When my son’s soccer coach couldn’t coach this season, and nobody else volunteered.  I said yes.  I have help, and I had some learning to do, but I am doing it!  I will tell you…it’s the best damned thing ever.  I love it.  It’s not always easy, and 10 year old boys will give you a run for your money, but on the whole, it’s been fantastic.  I feel ike I have done something positive, I get some excercise, and it’s been so much fun.  My son said he was proud of me.  That was worth the price of admission right there!

I am saying yes to plans, and finding ways to do things for me, as well as the kids.  I took a trip to NYC 3 days ago to go see one of my favorite authors do a reading.  Before, I likely would have made excuses, but this time I was determined to go.  One night to myself to do something I enjoyed was a complete recharge.  I notice that since I have been saying yes more, I am finding time to not only do more things with the kids, but for myself as well.

The end result?  I am happier.  I guess what they say is true, a happy wife is a happy life, because our household seems happier.  It also seems healthier.  The kids are supportive of me going to excercise classes 2x a week (the Y has a childcare room they go to for an hour where they draw, play or hang out).  My husband is supportive as well.  We’re all eating better.  We exercise more.  My son, who never learned how to ride a bike, learned (in the rain) because he asked me to teach him, and I said yes.  I had always thought it would have to be something my husband taught him, but nope!  I set my mind to teach him and it worked!  I am trying to silence the negative inner voice in my head and replace it with a positive, happy one.  It’s a work in progress, but it’s getting better all the time.

Have I lost weight?  Yup, so far it’s 16 lbs.  I gained 3 back, then lost them again.  It’s a process.  Hopefully it will keep disappearing with a bit of work, and staying active.

Ok, so I haven’t quite gotten the hang of saying yes more to the housework.

Can’t win em all.

Live the Yes life.  You won’t be sorry.