Up. Weird dreams. Have to pee. Stressed. Grants are stupid.
It’s late and I should be in bed but I’m up stress eating fig newtons instead. This does not bode well for my weigh-in tomorrow morning. Whatever. I’ve logged over 8 miles of wogging and 10 miles of biking the past three days so I don’t feel too bad about it.
Current worry: Kiddo got in some trouble today at her after-school program. The situation has been dealt with but the details of such make me worry in general. She’s a great kid but growing up is hard in general and navigating appropriate friendships, boundaries, physical changes, etc. is around the bend and I can see it coming bright as day. I was much less stressed before I had a child and I won’t pretend to not be envious of those without such specific stresses. And that’s just a fact jack.
So that’s the biggie for tonight. Anyway.
And I just read an article on all the evil ingredients in fig newtons. According to it, I’m going to die in my sleep tonight. Stupid internet.
Good news. I got a killer haircut and color today. Also, I’m back to my normal level of crazy vs. bedridden crazy. The darkness ran its course and is in the background until next time. That’s just the nature of it. My entire body is sore though and I feel stiff and creaky. I think mostly from doing a lot of walking at work in inappropriate footwear, and I guess the rest is just from being almost 40 or something. In other medical related news, I’m on a new asthma medication that I take daily instead of just relying on my inhaler, which I was borderline abusing. So far it’s working great. I’m well on my way to pill boxes labeled with days of the week and gallon ziploc bags full of meds. Womp womp.
Speaking of work, this grant that’s due first part of May will be the death of me. I’m learning a lot though. Mostly that I don’t like project management of grants, ha. Its going ok overall with some general frustrations over my emails not being read and feeling out of my element. But its keeping me busy and that’s a plus. The other big aspect of my job I truly like, however. I’m coordinating a weekly workshop and am in charge of all aspects. A bit stressful but such a high when all goes well and I’m finding my groove.
I totally bailed on a 5k today. Kid wasn’t feeling good last night and that got me off kilter, but to be honest, the main reason was that I just didn’t want to get out of bed this morning. I do what I want ya see. I did make up for it later this afternoon and got in a 4 mile wog. I’m freaking out a bit because I have a 1/2 marathon in a month. I just want to do it in 3 hours and I’ll be happy with that. Tomorrow we bike. Monday we wog. Tuesday we weigh and hope to hit the 10 lbs lost mark. But now we sleep.
While meditation, yoga, therapy, and medication have dramatically decreased the frequency of the “episodes” I have, there are some days when even those things are powerless against my anxiety and depression. On those days I am broken and the only thing I can do is wait it out and hope the cycle passes quickly.
When I fall, I fall hard but at least its usually onto a soft mattress and comfy blankets.
Tomorrow will be better.
My personal meditation practice has thus far been one of ebbs and flows; in a definite ebb the past few weeks. One of my “recharging” strategies is a monthly meditation class at the yoga studio that I like so much. Meditation with a group vs meditation alone is such a different experience. Both are beneficial and I love them in equal measure. Yesterday I joined the small class for an hour of guided meditation/movement and this morning I sat alone for seven minutes. Each method is a win in spite of the vast difference in duration and format.
I find that when I haven’t meditated for several days, coming back to it is a welcome homecoming but my mind is much more active and jumpy than if I stick with it for longer stretches. That’s normal I suppose and I am a believer that meditation takes practice to reap optimal benefits, even though the irony is that there is no wrong or right way to do it. It is about finding what works best for you; sitting in the traditional cross-legged position or legs outstretched, seated in a chair, standing up, laying down, or a walking meditation. You really can be mindful wherever you are and in whatever you are doing.
During yesterday’s class my mind was a whirl, my feet kept falling asleep, and my back ached. And yet, I came away refreshed and in a better mental state than when I had entered the doors of the studio an hour earlier. I received further confirmation that I was practicing in the right place for me when our teacher read from a book of one of my favorite meditation practitioners, Tara Brach, and reminded us that there is no right or wrong way to meditate. Your mind will wander and thoughts will come and go. Meditation is a process of coming back to yourself, over and over again.
You should sit in meditation for twenty minutes a day, unless you are too busy. Then you should sit for an hour. ~Zen Proverb
I used to really like shopping. When the right mood struck I’d take a few hours to myself and hit up my favorite retail havens to try on this and that and curse dressing room lighting and my hips. Because that’s loads o’ fun, right? Over the past couple of years though, I’m finding myself either falling out of love with the hunt for the perfect pair of pants, or I’m just getting old, lazy, and prefer convenience over time consuming browsing. These days I’m more into shopping online, with a twist. The twist being services like StitchFix and Gwynnie Bee.
A friend clued me in to StitchFix about a year and a half ago and the concept is pretty cool. You sign up for an account, fill out a detailed style questionnaire, take your measurements, hand over the almighty credit card number, and wait for the goodies to arrive. The goodies being a box of five pieces of clothing, including maybe a handbag or a piece of jewelry in the mix. You schedule your “fixes” as often as you like and give feedback on pieces you buy and ones you decide to send back. There’s a monthly styling fee and then you pay for pieces you keep, with a discount if you buy all five in the box.
Gwynnie Bee is somewhat similar except that you get to browse the clothes online and then choose what to put in your “closet” (with StitchFix, a stylist picks for you based on your answers to the style questions, so you never know what you’re getting until it arrives), and depending on the plan you chose, they mail you one or more selections from your virtual closet. You keep the item(s) for as long as you want and can either purchase or send it back and GB immediately sends you another selection from your closet. Its worth noting that some people are wigged out that you are wearing clothes that other people have worn but GB cleans everything and I see no difference in that vs putting on clothes in a dressing room that have been tried on by strangers and haven’t been cleaned. Live dangerously people, live dangerously. Personally, I like the “renting” option because I tire of things quickly (shut up) so sending it back and trading it in for something different is right up my fickle alley.
Overall, I really like both services but have recently put a hold on my SF for now and have switched to GB, primarily due to sizing. I was on the very upper end of size ranges that SF provides, and am on the lower end of GB’s size range. Stitch Fix’s largest available size is about a 12/14. Gwynnie Bee starts at around a size 10 and goes up. I’m in a weird in-between place and some SF things would fit alright and some would just make me curse and then weep. So far I’ve received two GB items and they have fit perfectly. I am happy to say that I’ve lost 7 lbs over the past month, so I’m not sure how long GB will work for me, but I’ll return to SF when the time comes. Options in all things folks…good for the soul.
I totally dig the whole subscription clothing concept. I like the element of surprise, getting a package with something fun in it just for me, “shopping” from the comfort of my home and my pajamas, and eliminating dressing room drama are all wins in my book. There are other services out there besides the two I talk about here…Golden Tote, Fabletics, and The Ms. Collection are ones I’ve heard of but haven’t tried. Yet.
The pics here (click to embiggen) are the two dresses I’ve received from GB so far. Sometimes being a girl is really awesome.
Peas ‘n carrots.
I think of a jillion things to write about here during the day or when I’m in the shower or otherwise not at the keyboard. Then when I sit down to write, my mind goes blank and all I can think of is what I ate for lunch or what I did at work today. And who wants to read about that? Anywho. Brains love to shut down when you need them most.
I was thinking today about how incongruent my age is with my career (and I use that term very loosely). Meaning, I’m surrounded by younger people who are in higher level positions than I am. The other day I overheard someone say how they had “just turned 31″ and today another person was complaining about how they were “nearly a 30 year old woman with a good job and a house…” and apparently weren’t being treated as such by their parents. Yes, you know I rolled my eyes.
I know a lot of it is an education issue. Unlike all the 20-30 somethings at the office, I don’t have a Master’s or any degrees above my lowly Bachelor’s. Nothing is stopping me from going back to school except the lack of desire for anything other than maybe a liberal arts degree or something humanitarian in nature.
Besides the education thing, there’s also an ambition thing. Climbing the ladder or being high woman on the totem pole has never been my thing. The thought of having to manage people gives me hives and I have no desire to be a “leader” in that way.
Best I can tell, I’m pretty ok with all of this, as lazy and unambitious as that may sound to some. It’s just interesting to me. I find the difference between me and my office mates thought-provoking, or something. Our mindsets in no way match up. Its like some sort of social science experiment/phenomena that I’m observing from inside the gray fabric walls of my cubicle.
Maybe that makes me weird. Probably.
So here’s to owning your weirdness.