Do You Wish…

…when 11:11 roles around?

I do. It’s nice to put some positive energy out there for myself. I don’t do a ton for myself, but my wishes always seem to be for me. My 11:11 wishes have gotten a lot simpler lately. They used to be greedy and extend into multiple wishes. Today, I just wished to have a good day tomorrow. My wants in this moment are that simple. I want to have a good day tomorrow, where I feel secure and like I am making solid choices. Seeing as it’s almost tomorrow, I wanted to share this thought with you all. I think I will continue to keep my wishes simple. Happiness is found in simple moments and actions. Then I can build those simple happy moments together until I have a string to pull into a positive place when I need it. Here to tomorrow and moments of peace.

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I Let Go…

…or at least I started to.

I was offered my old job for less pay, less hours, and less benefits (probably more work). I am quite sure it is everything they could have offered me in their current position, but I declined it. It’s not that I don’t appreciate the offer, but I just couldn’t go back to that level of stress for less then before (or what I had before). I gave so much of myself and my thoughts and stress to my old job that is was slowing taking pieces of my life outside of work (or not so slowly). I just can’t deal with that level of stress and no room for growth. I realized how horribly stressed I was with it once I didn’t have that job anymore. I have a new job where I am starting over, from the ground up, but I like it a lot. I get to teach again and there is room for growth. Plus, who doesn’t want to hang out with cool animals most of the day? They treat me well, train me, and ensure I am okay too. The commute is nuts, but I can move eventually to fix that. There is so much to learn at this position too! Once I leave that job, I get to leave it there – I don’t take it home and think about it all the time and stress dream about it all the time. I feel a little sad, a little scared, but mostly hopeful. My life thus far has been about taking leaps of faith and chances – why stop now? Here we go again! I do love it my life of leaping though 🙂

I will of course help put the person who takes it over onto the best path I can. I don’t want all of mine and my teammates hard work to be lost. Hopefully it helps them be in a better position then when we built it from the ground up. They need a person who needs the experience and learning factor, and will do that much work for the offered pay. That isn’t a bad thing. I was that person. This job gave me that experience. I am grateful. I am just ready for the next adventure.

Grown Up Nightmare…

…and I am wide awake now.

I had the worst dream. I had lost my place to live and was homeless. I was squatting in it when a new family moved in. Then my mom came to visit and I had to tell her that I lost my house/apartment and she cried at what a disappointment I was. It was terrible. Being homeless is one of my worst fears ever since I was little and learned that people could be homeless. So now, I am up an hour early for work ready to make that commute with a smile on my face so my nightmare doesn’t become a reality. I am unsettled now though to say the least. This one will stick with me for awhile. Jeepers.

Audible with Andrea…

…’All Grown Up.’

My new, long commute has provided me with the opportunity to pick audible back up. I can only listen to so much music and audio books are easier to focus on in traffic and help keep my calmer. My first book was called ‘All Grown Up’ by Jami Attenberg.

I found a lot of the things addressed in the book to ring true to me as a single, childless woman in my mid 30’s. One was that your friends sort of disappear when they have kids. They don’t mean to and you don’t mean to lose touch with them, it is just sort of what happens. Your lives are just so different and how you spend your time is so different. Your priorities are just different, not better or worse, just different. She also address that the first thing people think when they think of her is that she is single. She lists all of the the other qualities they could think of when they think of her, but no the leading trait is ‘single.’ I definitely relate to that. She also has a funny take on being at the singles table at wedding that was amusing and not entirely untrue.

Overall, it was a little bit of a downer for me to fully recommend to you. It’s not that I didn’t enjoy it, but the main character really gives up on a lot of her own dreams – for not awesome reasons and I found it frustrating. She was also a terrible member of her family, not really being there for anyone. I downloaded the book a few years ago and never got around to listening to it. I suspect I downloaded it because the main Character’s name is Andrea and I sort of expected a Sex and The City vibe (which it is not…although there is a fair amount of sex).

Still waiting for my strong character with my name. I just started listening to ‘The Midnight Library’ by Matt Haig and I will keep you posted on my thoughts there!

Almost Fell Back Into…

…a pattern that was really bad for me.

In former jobs (on in particular) I confused working hard with sacrificing everything for that job. I gave every second and stray thought to my work. I worried about it constantly. I analyzed everything everyone said or wanted or needed. I thought of all the ways I could prevent anyone being upset with me or the job I was doing. None of it mattered on bit when times got tough I was out on my ear. There was no thought on the other side on how I would eat or pay rent or visit a doctor (should be a perk of working at a nonprofit – people care). Today, I fell back into this pattern. I sacrificed my ONLY day off for the next two weeks to create a realistic plan. In return, I was made to feel I was disappointment because it wasn’t everything they wanted. Gee, I am sorry, I had to get another job when you abandoned me and I only have so much time to invest now. I will only do so on the clock. I almost fell back into giving it everything. Nope, not today! I am keeping my peace and only doing the work I am paid for. I will not burn my energy worrying that you all think I am bad at my job when I know I am. You only get out of people what you invest in them. I have not received a return on my investment into it so you will no longer get a return of my every thought and worry. I mean this in a very positive way, because I am now protecting myself. I will continue to look out for myself and what is the best next move for my career and my real life and sanity. Not today.

I see from the outside of that bubble how badly it is affecting the people that are giving it their everything. It’s easier to see the negative affects now that I am not mired in it. I want to help them and I will, but only as much as I am paid to do so and straight up asked. I don’t want to leave them hanging, but I can’t sacrifice my found peace for them either. It’s a really challenging balance.

Nick or Luke…

…is one of the questions coming to my brain after watching the Handmaid’s Tale Season 4 previews, among much bigger themes of course.

But the question I have been tossing around for now is who is better suited for June, now, his version. Luke is Hannah’s father and someone she built a life with out of choice and free will. Nick is Nichole’s father (just got the name connection – not sure it was intentional on Serena’s part) and a relationship that was built from survival – the need to feel. Doesn’t make it less or more, just different. I enjoyed getting to know more about Luke’s character in the last season. I don’t think he will be able to forgive himself for losing June and Hannah in the first place and I don’t think he will be able to forgive her for going back to try and save Hannah; for getting all those children out, but not Hannah. This of course will really be anger at himself – but it will translate to her. Nick is an eye – he would be giving everything up for her, and I think he is prepared to do that. He has tried really hard not to love her, but he still does. So, if she gets out and Nick gets out, who do you spend your life with? Two great loves – both with big obstacles and flaws. Luke is raising Nichole. If June gets Hannah out of Gilead, I think it will only be with Nick’s help. Because it means everything to June – he will do it. His daughter is safe – hers is not. Maybe now that he is a parent he gets it.

Personally, I think Nick is the better match for June as she is. He sees her scars and loves her anyway – makes the choice again and again to love her. He has seen what lengths she will go to for her children and her beliefs. He has seen her brutal side, even and especially towards him, and still he chooses her. That’s about everything in my book.

I know there are much bigger themes to dissect here, but that it was the one I was thinking about today.

I Just Wanted to Walk My Dog…

…and enjoy the sunshine.

It is my one day off this week so I decided to walk Marty farther around my neighborhood and over to the turf (Marty loves turf!). I put on my pink camo leggings and headed out. We were enjoying the sunshine and turf and suddenly some creep wold whistled at us as the drove by in their truck. At first my brain wrote it off as no big deal but yanno what – I think it’s time as women that we STOP writing this stupid crap off as normal. It’s not normal. I don’t wolf whistle at strange men (or strange women). Back before my BF, when I thought a dude was cute I would say wave or say hi or strike up a conversation. Or if I was driving I would do nothing – because I was driving. Men don’t get wolf whistled or randomly called at for just wearing cool leggings and taking their dog for a walk. I don’t know a single woman who has NOT written this kind of stuff of. We exchange stories and call it normal. Nope, nope, nope. Not normal – not okay. Let’s stop thinking this is normal and writing it off. Let’s call a spade a spade and say it’s not okay – never has been. Whose with me?

Driving, Driving…

…and more driving! That is my current life.

I have never been a big fan of driving. In fact, it is a main source of my anxiety. I am afraid of hurting someone (not myself, but others – not that I don’t value myself, it just isn’t what my anxiety floats around). Moving to California only increased that anxiety. Y’all are kinda crazy drivers and the traffic is heavy. Lately, I have been driving at least two hours everyday with my new commute. My longest one way drive has been 2.15 hours (1.75 of that trapped in traffic on the five). Audio books and the no commercial Pandora help, but it is still a lot of driving. I love this new job though so that makes it easier to get into my car knowing what is ahead. I a really hoping I don’t get fatigued with the drive. I can’t move to Escondido for a seasonal job (I am really hoping they keep me on beyond the season). The commute on top of the very physical job (which I love) is just exhausting me a little after a pretty sedentary year. I am incredibly grateful for the work, especially at this awesome job, I just so wish it was closer. I am hoping that once I am used to working a lot again that the commute will just be something I do and not something I have to do. On the bright side my car gets good gas mileage. I know others who work there have a similar commute and that is good to know and good to commiserate with them. To have a group of folks who love their work so much that they are willing to make the same time sacrifice is awesome.

I am so grateful though to feel useful again and be able to put my skills into practice. It feels good. Also, it feels good to pay rent. Between my two jobs I almost had my whole rent payment (only had to dip into my savings a little). I know that sounds sarcastic, but it’s not. Grateful for every penny.

Holy Crap…

…and I mean that quite literally.

Since I talk about up close and personal things like hemorrhoids, therapy, sex, and various other previously considered ‘private’ topics, let’s talk about digestion and digestive troubles. I want to help normalize talking about ‘private’ things so people know there is nothing wrong with them either and it happens to us all.

With that little intro, I almost pooped my pants today and that is NOT an exaggeration. It all started at 2:35 am last night. My dude had just fallen asleep with his arm around me waist when I felt the gurgles in my tummy. I knew what was coming, but I was sleepy and tried to ignore it, which never works. So I spent the next hour battling my digestive system. I laid back down just trying to rest between bouts but thankfully fell asleep. I got up and had my coffee (mistake) and went to my nail appointment. I have been looking forward to it. It’s my splurge and reward to myself for working hard. Midway through I felt the gurgles! I had was mid way through my SNS dip manicure and regular pedicure aka not able to use the bathroom. I closed my eyes and begged my body to hold off until I was done with mani and pedi. Somehow, someway it mostly worked. I had some cramps, but not urgent needs. I thanks my body several times in my mind. I paid, admired my pretty nails and booked it to my car because the urgency was setting in. I drove home, ran into the house, and barely made it. I mean BARELY. I have had more then my share of digestive issues in the past but I have never almost shit my pants. It’s time for some diet changes.

Also, I think because I didn’t have to be up or to work by a specific time, my body just relaxed and released. It just unclenched and everything started moving. Our bodies are amazing and funny things. So, if you have digestive issues you are not alone my friend. Not alone.

Readjusting to The Grind…

…and the longest commute I have every had.

I now have two part time jobs that I am trying to make add up to one full time job (without benefits). I LOVE my second part time job. It makes me feel happy and fulfilled again, and I haven’t had that in what feels like an eternity. It is back at the core of what I love about my line of work. Teaching people about cool animals and instilling important conservation methods (previously it was history, not animals but same idea). The people are wonderful and they actually offer paid training time. It’s amazing. I love the whole vibe. AND the provided me khakis and many other uniform pieces – so nice not to spend my money on dumb khakis. The only downside is it is pretty far away; 55 minutes is about the fastest I get there with no traffic. It is not a particularly difficult drive – just long. I hope that it does not wear on me over time. Anyone have tips for reducing the stress of a long commute?

I am readjusting to the ‘rise and grind’ again after the year of pandemic quarantine life. I like being back at it but it is an adjustment to be sure (especially for my doggo!). I have to keep a color coded calendar of what job I need to be at when. It helps my brain keep it straight. I am also trying to figure out how to fit RIPPED into my new schedule. Definitely wanna keep my muscle up. The new job is pretty physical too which helps my fitness but not my workout motivation. After a physical day and a long drive I am not super motivated for a high intensity workout. I will find a balance I am sure. It’s just my new reality and frankly I like it most of the time 😉

Anyone else out there taking some time to re acclimate to the grind again?

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