Resolutions of 2012 (and what I learned from 2011)

Move forward or get stuck in the past

Choose, but choose wisely.

It is always something I enjoy doing – making my resolutions.

I’ve said it before, I’ll say it again: Resolutions are goals.  People who are like, “I don’t make resolutions ’cause it’s stupid” are likely to be the people with no aim or direction.  They probably float through life, accidental like, waiting for things to happen, rather than making them happen on their own.  I take issue with those people.  Now, conversely, if you’re the person who is constantly setting goals and re-evaluating them, then the prior statement doesn’t apply to you.

I’m not a fan of the cop-out resolutions.  Without defining, clearly, what your commitment is to, it’s easy to let them slip away.  If you go with the ones that are often broken (weight-loss, less debt, more family time, etc), you’ll find that you will have lost sight of them by March.  Because life happens and it’s easy to get off track.  Not that those goals aren’t worthy and/or easy.  They are *very* important and often difficult to achieve.  But, I guess I’m a bigger fan of goals that go deeper than that.

When I made my 2011 goals, my life was in a decidedly different place.  I stuck with many of my resolutions, but not all.  I’m okay with that.

I learned a lot from 2011.  I learned that things can change slowly, but you often realize the gravity of those changes all at once.  I learned that emotions that are bottled up for too long will find a way out.  I learned that my strength is a sleeping giant, but it will prevail.  I learned that, without direction, I am lost.  I learned that no one will speak better for me than I can.

So for 2012, here are some of the big ones:

  • I need to keep an outlet for my emotions.  A person or activity or both.  I need a place to vent, and I need an activity to safely process my emotions.  Currently, I have those.  I need to remember to use them and not feel weak when I do.
  • I will continue to focus on my physical health.  Not to lose weight, per se.  But to keep my body healthy by keeping my mind engaged.  I lost about 20 lbs in 2012.  And I did it through active participation from my mind.  I will keep that focus.
  • I will speak up when I have a concern.  But when I do, I will be insightful and kind.  It does no good to be hurtful.  I generally don’t do that, when I do say something.  But I find that the first step is speaking up.  I will speak up more often.
  • I will read more.  I read a lot during 2011, but I want to read even more in 2012.  It helps my subconscious process things while I escape.  Plus, it makes me a better writer.  Can’t argue with that.
  • I will be featured by WordPress at least once as a featured writer.  So, you hear that, WordPress peeps?  Pay attention to me, please!  I have stuff worth saying (most of the time).
  • I will be off meds by the end of the year.  So long as I am ready, at least.  I don’t want to take myself off them before I’m ready, but I will take the steps to try to be ready to do that.  Meds weren’t ever a long-term solution.  And although I am much more comfortable with my choice, now (thanks to my very dear friend who helped me through the decision), I don’t want it to be a forever thing.
  • BFF #1 and I will go blazing at least four times this year.  I value that time, so much.  And it gives us both an opportunity to express ourselves creatively.  That’s a good thing.  Plus, I got some kick-ass photographs this year.  I want that to happen again.

I have some others, but these were the biggies.  I have one more, though.  It’s one of the most important, I think:

  • I will take care of myself.  My mind, my body, my soul.  I will reward myself with things that make me happy without guilt and shame.  I will enjoy myself, and being in my own skin.
    I am a worthy person.  I know this, deep down in the cockles of my heart.  But I will practice it, in 2012.

What are your goals?  Do you make them?  If not, why?  And if so, what are some of them?

I hope you all have a wonderful, safe and exciting New Years celebration.  Don’t drink and drive, and move forward into a new year with love and determination to be the best person you can be.

I’ll end 2011 with a quote from my favorite movie, of all time: Forrest Gump.

“Don’t you just love New Years? It’s like you get to start over.  …..Everyone deserves a second chance.”

A Solitary Life

I went through a rough patch with my faith when I was young.  I’ve been through a lot, and I couldn’t imagine that God (who supposedly loved me), would put me through the awful things I went through.

But, I came around.  My faith is mine.  So know that I share my story of faith with you out of the spirit of sharing and nothing more.  It is not my intention to change someone’s mind, or have them change mine.  My relationship with God is very personal.  And it’s mine.  And I trust His will and guidance and I know, now, that the things I’ve been through were to prepare me for my mission on earth.  I believe that I was put here to shepherd others through their darkness.  Which is why I do so well with words.  It’s why I can convey emotion with my written and verbal communication; serenity and anger and sadness and motivation and love and fear and determination…. all part of the gift I was given.  And while it does make for a sometimes very challenging life, it is really all part of what I need to experience to be able to help other people.

I trust Him, explicitly.

And although I’m very familiar with the origins of Christmas and the pagan roots, I still choose to observe the birth of Christ as a wonderful and momentous occasion.  One man….just one… changed a whole planet.  Jesus changed everything.  I’m grateful for the sacrifice.

A wonderful friend posted this, yesterday, on Facebook.  Originally seen in Spanish, by him, he’s graciously translated it for the rest of us.
(**Side note….the irony is that my daddy had this exact. same. thing. in a frame when I was young, but I never knew what it said.  So I knew it was Divinity that placed it in my path this weekend.)

A Solitary Life
He was a man born in an insignificant little town. Son of a peasant woman. He grew up in another town of no importance, worked as a carpenter until he was 30 years old. And then, for 3 years, he was a nomadic preacher. He never wrote a book, never raised a family, and He never attended a university. He never set foot in any large cities. He never traveled more than 320 kilometers away from the place of His birth. He never did any of the things that are usually associated with greatness; the only credentials he had was Himself.
When He was still a young man, the tide of public opinion turned against Him. In the hour of most danger, his friends abandoned him. One of them denied Him, another betrayed Him. He had to deal with mockery by a jury of His peers. He was nailed to a cross in between two thieves.
His executioners, while He died, gambled for the only material possession He had left in the world: His tunic. When He died, He was lowered from the cross then placed in a borrowed tomb.
Almost 20 centuries have passed, and He is still the only hope for the world, the only comfort for the sad and Savior for the sinners. All the navies that have been assembled, all the armies that have ever existed, all the governments that have been put in place, and all the kings that have ever ruled……..
All of that, combined, has not affected mankind living on Earth as powerfully as that one, solitary life.
Merry Christmas, if you celebrate.  And if not, have a truly wonderful day!

Cardboard People

I want to first apologize for being overly chatty. My annual bout with laryngitis has begun and already I’m feeling the sting of not being able to communicate freely. Not being able to talk is a fate worse than death, as far as I’m concerned. I can’t speak. I can’t laugh. I can’t sing. It all sucks. I jokingly say that getting laryngitis is God’s way of telling me to shut up and listen. And so I will….later. But this is my forum and dammit! I’ll use it to send smoke signals to the rest of the world, since I can’t talk. 🙂

Today’s random thought is about the behavior of people, and the masks we wear. Now, I get the whole “time and place” thing. We can’t (and shouldn’t) just say what ever is on our mind when ever we think it. I’m talking about something deeper. Something that defines our character. I’m talking about who we are, on the inside.

We all know that one person. That person who talks a big game but, in reality, is totally different. When they’re in groups they behave one way, and in private they are totally different. These people tend to be “boogie men” that walk around in the daylight.
(I say boogie men, but clearly I’m not only referring to men. Don’t leave me hater comments about how women are boogies, too. Trust me, I’m very well aware. It just sounds silly to say “boogie people” and I don’t care all that much about being PC.)
These are the people who you hear others talk about and think, “Really? He seemed so nice…” and you’re left with a distorted image of him because you’re not sure what to believe.

I see right through those facades, normally. I suppose it isn’t that I see it, with my eyes. I feel it. Something about that person just rubs me the wrong way. And I’ll try to work through it, but ultimately I find that they are just not nice people.

They’re shape shifters. They take on the appearance of their personality to suit the people near them. When someone else joins in, they change again. They are the personality equivalent of cardboard – shallow.

And when people are like this, it’s the very worst. They play games with other people. They pretend to be kind and nice and as soon as

Cardboard

If you have the depth of cardboard, you're useless

the doors are closed, they are horrible and rotten. Their dysfunction leads to other dysfunction. People who love them might make the excuse, “It’s not like that all the time” or “He just had a really bad day” or “She didn’t mean it. She was just upset.” Yeah… I don’t buy it.

Listen, I get that we all behave somewhat differently within the constraints of social situations. Obviously, when I’m at my daughter’s school, I’m not going to swear like a sailor. Conversely, when I’m at the bar with friends, I’m not going to be demure. I am, however, totally, 100% the same person, no matter what. The person whose thoughts you’re reading now would be the same person you’d hear in real life.

The really messed up part about cardboard people is that because they absorb whatever is around them, they never assume the blame. It’s always someone else’s fault. They deflect and avoid responsibility because they never fully see that their behavior is a choice. And the people who love them are left carrying the blame….not understanding what they did wrong. It’s upsetting.

No single person is perfect. No one. But I value imperfection. I value growth. I value independence and individuality. I don’t want to keep up with “the Jones'”…hell – I don’t even know any damn Jones’. But overall, I value my ability to think and choose for myself, without being a bitch, and without making other people responsible for my choices. I am who I am because I am willing to make mistakes, learn from them, grow, change, cry, laugh, feel, adapt, think, love…..I am willing to live out loud.

And this… this is the quote of the day from my favorite musical of all time: Evita (secretly, I long to play Eva Peron on stage someday)

“Better to win by admitting my sin than to lose with a halo.” ~Eva Peron

In other words… I’d rather people hate me for who I really am than to love me for someone I’m not. I feel sorry for anyone who feels differently.

Tim Tebow and the hand of God

 This post has been a long time coming.  It’s been milling about in my head for days/weeks/months.  Technically, I’ve had a very strong opinion on Tim Tebow since we drafted him back when Josh McDaniels was blowing up coaching the Denver Broncos.  Ugh…. McNugget is a whole other issue.  This is about Tebow.

Tim Tebow AP Photo: Jack Dempsey

Tim Tebow AP Photo: Jack Dempsey

But… it isn’t.

Sit tight with me, folks.  I need to give you some background.

  1. I have been, am, and always will be a Denver Broncos fan, despite the fact that some have accused me of being a bigger Indianapolis Colts fan.
  2. Beyond that, I am a football fan, through and through.  The world stops in my household on Football Sunday.  And Monday.  And sometimes Thursday.  And Saturday, during the playoffs.  Yep…. I’m that guy girl.  So this little rant of mine that’s coming is well founded.  This isn’t something I am regurgitating from talk radio or my husband.  I can think for myself. And I know what I’m talking about.
  3. I am a believer.  I don’t know how far into saying “I’m a Christian” I will go, but if you had to categorize me, yes.  I’m a Christian.

Now that you’ve got some background on me, let’s get started.

Yep… the Denver Broncos are winning games.  And yes, Tebow is leading them.  And yes, he’s a Christian.  And yes, he brings some energy that is exciting and inspiring.

I am so tired of hearing, from my fellow fans, “Tebow’s taking us to the Super Bowl.”  Are you kidding me? We win a few games and all of a sudden we’re a championship team?  Give me a break.  I don’t know how it is in other cities, but I’ve been told that Denver fans are some of the worst in this sense.  We win a few games and suddenly we’re a Championship-caliber team.

Wrong.  We’re not.  And let me tell you why.

  • Tebow is still a rookie quarterback.  He’s green, still.  He’s not accurate.  He still makes stupid choices.  He’s still learning, for Pete’s sake!
  • We can’t go to the Super Bowl with a quarterback who can’t pass consistently and accurately.  And we certainly can’t go with receivers who couldn’t catch a ball in a 3 foot net surrounding them.  Seriously!  How many balls are thrown and hit them in the chest or the hands and they drop it.  Geez!  It’s embarrassing.
  • The defense is playing inspired football.  It’s the only thing we have going for us.  But does anyone remember the ’06 Bears with Rex Grossman?  He had the worst QB rating, ever, in a Super Bowl.  And was mediocre before that.  The defense got them to the Super Bowl. But defenses don’t win Super Bowls.  And if I measure us against the Green Bay Packers (a well-rounded, solid team), there’s no contest.

But it isn’t just that.  A very good friend of mine (who is also a fan just of another team), had a discussion with me last year when we drafted Tebow.  I was pretty fired up about it, then (go figure, huh?) because we drafted a quarterback when we really needed help with defense.  But whatever… bygones.  He asked me. “Is it the fact that he’s a Christian?”  Yeah… it was part of it.  I wasn’t sold on Tebow.  And the whole Christian thing was a turn off.  I was over it.  Just play football, you schmuck.  But then I saw some interviews.  And I saw how he carried himself in the media.  You know what I found?  He is a Christian, but it’s *us* who are making that into what he’s about.  The media is sensationalizing it.  I didn’t really care.  I just wanted to see the guy play football.

Then… Tebowing.  Wow.  I don’t think I’ve ever seen a quart back more polarizing than he is.  People are all types of pissed about the Tebowing thing.  Let me be clear: I don’t give a rip about Tebowing.  People are like, “It’s not Tebowing, it’s praying.”  Sure.  It is.  Who cares, though?  For some of these people, I am truly shocked!  I mean, really?  True Christians who are passing a blanket judgment on others, and for what?  For the glory of knowing that they are somehow better because they “pray” and don’t “Tebow.”  Whatever.  I know enough about Christianity to know this much:

It is not my place to know what’s in the hearts of men.  It is *my* responsibility to have a relationship with Christ, and He will take care of the rest.

Then… and this was the kicker for me today…. I hear, on the news, that some Pastor in Castle Rock, Colorado is preaching that God is helping Tebow win games.  “It’s not luck,” Wayne Hanson said. “Luck isn’t winning six games in a row. It’s favor. God’s favor.”

What. The. HECK?  I can’t claim to know God’s plan, or know His thoughts on Pro-Football.  But I’m gonna take a guess that winning/losing in the NFL doesn’t really rank compared with famine, disease and tragedy that the people on this earth face on a daily basis.  So that’s just asinine, to assume that it’s God’s favor.  You know, people on the opposing teams (and fans) pray, too.  Just sayin’.

I made a joke, recently, that seeing Tebow “Tebowing” probably ripped a hole in the time/space continuum.  Let me be clear: I don’t mind that he prays.  I don’t mind that he’s a Christian.  I don’t mind that people are mimicking him, all over the world (notice I said mimic, not mock).  I think that God does amazing things with people who get on their knees for Him for *any* reason.  That’s His business, not mine.  For once, we have a guy who’s a pro-athelete getting on the news for something other than rape/drug abuse/domestic assault/etc. and actually inspiring adults and children to be better people, to reach for their goals, and to have faith in something bigger than themselves.  That is absolutely amazing.

Here’s what I can see, as a fan and as a woman of strong spiritualism: Tebow doesn’t pray that God will help him win the game.  He’s said this, out loud.  When Tim Tebow is praying, he prays that God will give him patience/guidance/strength/focus…whatever.  The reason he is able to come back after a fumble or interception or 3-and-out series and play like it’s his first drive is because he has the divine gift of focus.  That’s all.  His faith keeps him strong and focused and determined.  And that’s not because “God likes Tebow” any more than God likes any of us.

I have long said that Tim Tebow has talent and a drive to succeed that I’ve not seen in a while.  He is, essentially, the Rocky of Football. “What he lacks in skill, he makes up for with will.”  Give the guy time and space, to grow into the NFL.  I believe in his abilities.  He’s not, nor should he, be ready to “take us all the way.”  He’s just a man.  And he’s still learning.

He makes it fun to watch the Broncos play, again.  We haven’t had that in a while.  I like Tebow.  I do.  But I’m not going to run out and buy all the Tebow gear I can find, because his future in Denver is uncertain.  But please, people… lay off the whole “God/Tebow/Christian” thing.  He’s just a man.

And that’s all I have to say about that.

Who is in my head?

**Side note: I’ve started a Facebook site for theflameinside, and I’d love it if you connected with me there. That makes it easier to share with your friends, if you find a post that is particularly moving for you. Or just to hear some of the other news I’ve got that isn’t necessarily blog worthy. Check it out here!

I have found myself hearing the things I say to myself in an acute, very sensitive way. And I’ve come to a few conclusions:

  • Very few of the tapes that play in my head are actually *mine*. Often, they are other people who have said things that have stuck.

    Useless tapes we play

    Courtesy of graur razvan ionut

  • Most of the time, they don’t even make sense!
  • The person who did say it has bigger issues than I do.

Here are a few examples that fit the bill:

  • “You’re too heavy to cut your hair to your shoulders. It’ll make you look fat.” (Um….wrong. I know a few beautiful ladies who are heavier who have short hair.)
  • “You’re stupid.” (This couldn’t be more wrong. I won’t even give credence to the statement by explaining why.)

There are a few others, though, that I’ve heard in my years that stick with me. Even though they weren’t said with malice or intent. Here are two that I hear that have actually done me some good:

  • “When you run, it sounds like elephant footsteps.” (Thanks, BFF#1 – I think of it every time I run, but it forces me to shorten my stride and run with better form. And yes…every time we run the Runnin’ of the Green, I will remind you. ‘Cause it’s funny!)
  • “You can’t do that.” (I realize this is a general phrase I’ve heard a lot over the years, but it’s part of what drives me to do anything.)

This story is about those two phrases. I’m not sure if I’ve told the story before, so if I have, bear with me as I tell it again. If not, then you’re in for a heartwarming and amusing tale of foolishness.

BFF#1 told me that me feet sounded like elephant footsteps the very first time we ever ran together. I weighed about 198 lbs, and had never run (on purpose) in my life. She called me on Friday and said she’d be running the very popular Bolder Boulder (a challenging 10K race), and asked if I wanted to do it with her. I did. Sounded fun (I would come to regret that!).

So there we were. About 1/2 K into the 10K. Amongst the other 1000’s of runners were the unmistakable “whap-whap-whap” sounds of my heavy feet. (Insert her comment here.) Now… at the time I was a little mortified. All I could think of were the awful various “you’re-a-fat-girl” random tapes that I could so easily cue up. But, I did it. I performed horribly. 10K took me 1:40 to do. And I suffered for days afterward and thought, “What the heck was I thinking? I’m not a runner!”

Now, insert the other comment here: “You can’t do that.” I was determined to prove whoever it was in my head wrong. Yeah…I can. And I so I did. I started running. Small runs, at first. 2 miles here and there. Then a little more. And then a little more. And the next year, I ran that same 10K in 1:10. A full 30 minutes less. And then, I was hooked. I started running more and more and more.

The next year I really wanted to do the Colfax Half-Marathon (which is 13.2 miles). But I was a little short on cash and felt a little weird about it because, despite the fact that I could and had run longer distances, that tape played over and over. “You can’t do that.” The week before the event, BFF#1 calls and says she’s running the event as part of a relay team with the people she works with.
**Side note: I love BFF#1. She is one of two people who have known me, inside and out, good and bad, dark and bright, and loves me anyway. Nothing (and I repeat *nothing*) has ever happened between us with the intent of hurting the other. But that being said, there is an unspoken competitiveness between us. It’s a good thing. It always pushes us further and challenges us to be better people. I’m grateful for her every day.
But…all of that loveliness aside, I was like, “Oh hell no! You’re not running that event if don’t!” So I managed to come up with enough for the registration and there I was – ready to run the entire distance, alone.

There was a cool satisfaction I had; sort of an empowered state of mind. I *could* run it and now, I was going to.

Imagine my surprise when I get the call from her, the Friday before the event, and hear these words: “We’re not running it. One of the guys on our team is injured.” Wait…..WHAT?!? She was gracious, as she always is, and offered to take me to the start line. The hubs would meet me at the finish to get me home. For the next two days I lamented my stupid need to be competitive and felt like an idiot because now I was going to torture myself for 13.1 miles…and for what? For the glory of knowing I was a “real runner”?

Race day arrived. My BFF picked me up and drove me. I expressed my uncertainty at the distance. I was nervous. But, being the amazing friend she is, she just encouraged me and made me feel better. She dropped me off and I stood there, looking at all of the other runners and still had that nagging need to come clean to her. So I called. The conversation went something like this:

me: (ring ring)
her: Hey! Is everything okay?
me: Yeah….no. I’m still nervous. And I have a confession. (sigh) I was upset because you were running the relay so I signed up for the whole half-distance so I could prove that I wasn’t a loser and then you aren’t running it and now the joke’s on me because I will be kicking my own ass for the next 13 miles while you go home and relax and I’m stupid!
her: (quietly) …I know that’s why you did it.
me: I’m sorry.
her: It’s okay. I’m glad that it helped you push yourself to do something that is uncomfortable. You’ll do fine. I know you’ll do great.

And so I did it. I went out, ran 13 miles through old neighborhoods full of memories and with the support and encouragement of the people who loved me and believed in my success. And yeah…. at about mile 12 I was in pain and regretting every stupid step that took me from the start line to where I was. But after crossing the finish line I was overwhelmed with so much pride that I cried. I still have my finisher’s medal hanging in my office. It is a reminder of what I can do if I put my mind to it. (I also did the same event with BFF#1 the next year.)

This is the moral of the story: most of the tapes we play for ourselves are played when we’re facing adversity. And that’s when it’s easiest to believe. Pay attention to what you say to yourself when the chips are down. And refuse that voice admission into your choices. Some of your tapes, like mine, can be motivating. But others are destructive. What are you playing for yourself and it is suiting you? If not, destroy that tape. Replace it with something else.

I’ll give you one: “If you can control it, you can do whatever you put your mind and heart to. I believe in your power.”

And you can quote me on that.

The battle resumes

I’m back to the battle. It’s been a tough several days in my part of the world. But in the last week or so, I’ve made some pretty big decisions.

Part of the reason I have been struggling so much is the sheer unrelenting stress that I’ve been under at work. I’m a sticker-outer. I’ll wait, in a holding pattern, for a very long time when I’m unsure about something. Although I tend to be spontaneous with little choices (like, jeans or slacks today?), when it comes to the bg stuff, I’ll wait it out. Often times, I wait too long.

In the case of work, I allowed myself to wait too long. And last week, on my little break from work (6 glorious days off!), I made the decision to start looking for a new job. It wasn’t/isn’t to make that choice, but I had decided that I’ll never get better when things aren’t improving. All I’m doing is masking symptoms with the meds. And… I don’t want to be on meds forever.

Mediocrity has become the acceptable form of performance at my office. That isn’t something I handle well. I’m not tolerant of people who choose not to put forth their best efforts. Every now and then? Sure… we all have days when we decide that we can’t focus on things too long. But all the time…every day, this is how it is. I can’t handle it anymore. Their shortcomings become my responsibility. And I literally can’t take on any more.

So… there we are. I re-did my resume. I started job searching. I’ve sent out a few. No responses, yet.

There is a little bit of fear in that. I’m pretty fragile, right now. I’m putting on a very tough face for the world, but I’m breaking underneath. Hopelessness… it’s the worst. And when you’re putting yourself out there to be judged, personally and professionally, it is a little scary. So… I’ve been really struggling, inside.

I’m afraid of many things. Truthfully – they’re all the unlikely things. I’m afraid of falling down stairs. I’m afraid of zombies. I’m afraid of boogeymen under my bed. Turns out, I’m also afraid of failure. Which I realize is a very real thing for most people.

We make choices based on pleasure and pain. But pain is always the stronger motivator. And for too long, I’ve tried to justify the work ethic in the company I’m with. But now, the pain has become too much and I’d rather face judgement and failure from prospective employers than the misery at the office.

I’m praying, hard, every day. God… show me the way out. Give me strength to keep putting one foot in front of the other. Give me grace. He’s listening; I’m sure of it. And He’s sending me angels, and support, everyday.

It’s a slow process.

If you’ve been in this situation, you’ll understand that.
But know that you’re not alone. And be careful of allowing yourself to isolate. You may think that people are tired of hearing about it. You may feel like you’re a burden. You may even be tired of talking about it. That’s okay. First – the people who love you will never tire of helping you. Second – the definition of burden is “a heavy load”. It is heavy to *you*, but they have the strength to help you carry it for a while. And third – you don’t have to talk about it to talk. Just be sure you’re talking. Silence has a tendency to fill up with the very worst things.

If you haven’t ever dealt with depression or any other mental illness… maybe this will help:
There are good days, and there bad days. Everyone has those. But my bad days seem worse. And personal. Like, something goes wrong and it’s like everything in my body is screaming at me what an idiot I am. And then, because I’m already feeling like crap, every little thing that happens reinforces what a terrible human being I am. The ability to “let it go” and recover is hard.
If you’re watching someone go through it, be patient. Support them. Remind them that they are a wonderful person, even if they don’t feel that way. Ask how you can help. They may not know the answer, but it’ll mean everything that you asked. Take it one day at a time, and remind them to do the same.

The goal isn’t to only have good days. The goal is to have less bad days and more good days. The goal is to be able to identify when you’re overwhelmed and handle it in appropriate ways. The goal is to be able to recover.

You may have to make changes in your life to allow that to happen. You’ll do this when you’re ready. And when you’re ready, trust me, you’ll know. Until then… be patient with yourself.

My BFF said to me, “It’s okay to lose a battle or two. It’s fine. Don’t lose the war. Keep fighting.”

I will. I am. This war has only one victor – and that’s this girl. And you can quote me on that.

On a clear day you can see forever

It is with a great amount of joy I tell you that the fog is gone today. I feel so much better – like myself, for a change. I don’t know how long it’ll last, or whether or not this is just an illusion of delirium (since I’ve been struggling so much lately), but I am feeling better. Empowered. Stronger. Maybe the meds are finally adjusting. Maybe this is just a good day.

I couldn’t tell you why. I just woke up that way. Like the days when I am down, I can’t put my finger on the difference. Especially when things are good, I especially don’t want to foul it up. So I wish I knew what the big difference was.

I did drink milk last night. Apparently milk contains opiates and, while the internet tried to convince me that I was addicted to dairy, I’m convinced that it was just a craving.

Wait… what? Addicted to dairy? Yep. Not even kidding. I typed in “dairy cravings” and this website came up that said that I could possibly be addicted to dairy. No joke! It appears that too much milk makes me a dairy junkie. I *might* as well be doing heroin, except that milk doesn’t require a needle. So that’s what sold me on it. That and the fact that I can take my opiates dairy in many forms: ice cream, cheese, sour cream, yogurt. Heroin comes in only one form: misery. So I’m sticking with the dairy. Maybe it’s just me. But seriously, anyone considering heroin should try a glass of milk, instead. No nasty needle marks AND you can make it chocolate milk, if you’re feeling wild.

I’m feeling like anything is possible. Today, at least. If a turtle had more faith in possibility, or just more faith in general, could he run faster? Who said that turtles are doomed to sloth? And if we had named a “sloth” a “zippy”, is it possible that he’d be a little quicker? Right now, I’m totally blowing your mind, aren’t I? Aside from the physiological dictations of each species, my point is that we allow ourselves to be boxed into a label. Someone, somewhere along the line, told us that we were worthless. So we own that and carry it around with us. Just one little thing on our back. Then, another thing: we’re stupid. Onto our back it goes. Add another. And another. And before you know it, that one rock has turned into a shell. And we hide under it. Our “limits” become our protection.

I say screw that! I’m nobody’s turtle. I am whatever I choose to be. I’m bright. I’m funny (admit it… you smiled when you read the whole sloth/zippy thing). I’m pretty. I’m capable. And anyone who says differently is full of crap.

Today is clear. I can see for miles. And I’ll proceed as far as I can. Stay tuned. You never know what’s around the corner for me, or for you.

P.S. A special shout out to Brian Christensen and Guapo who were unrealized angels sent to me. You were pivotal in today’s mood shift. And that goes to show, folks – there is power in kindness. Lift a stranger up today. Be nice. It’ll mean the world to them.