Is There a Silver Lining to a Failing Diet?

I am without a doubt failing on my diet goals. Technically I’m still below where I started, so we will call that a step in the right direction. Although Thanksgiving is this week, and I for one plan on enjoying it, soooooo that might mean I’m right back to where I started a couple of months ago.  Even so, I think there is a silver lining.

Why am I not mad at myself? That’s a good question. Like most people in their 40’s I have a plenty of things that distract me from my personal goals. Work, the kids, a house, and I have had some medical challenges mixed in along the way. That’s life, a bunch of distractions from the focuses we feel are important. Dieting usually finds its way to a top focus. Maybe I’m trying to hold onto or regain my figure from my younger days, maybe I feel like if I do lose the weight, I’m still young.  Hahaha I know, some of my thoughts are somewhat delusional😉. Whatever the reason, dieting usually has a way of either making me feel good or feel really horrible about myself.

Failing while dieting happens, and yet I use the failure as an opportunity to squash any confidence I have in myself. Rather than considering what life is slinging at me, or even just understanding that I’m human and its ok to fail sometimes, my inner voice has all kinds of nasty it throws my way, making me feel even more miserable. You know the kind of defeat that makes you want the extra slice of pizza, followed by a tub of ice cream, all eaten while watching The Biggest Loser. All of which reminds me of my serious lack of backbone.

ENOUGH!!! That’s me yelling back at myself! I’m saying enough is enough. While I haven’t lost all the weight I wanted to, and I certainly haven’t jumped on a treadmill, I have done some good things. No, I haven’t adopted any life changing eating habits, I have managed some minor adjustments to my old habits. So, what have I done that’s good???

I have found a way to get through the normal daily challenges, a move, a couple of medical procedures and some not so exciting news about an upcoming surgery. I have managed to do this because thankfully I have help and support. The love and support in my life is something I am beyond grateful for and fortunate to have. Without that support I may have seriously shut down. Instead, I have been able to spend time with my loved ones and friends. We have been having fun, getting dressed up for trivia night, planning holiday gatherings, decorating and enjoying the wonderful life that unfolds in front of us every day.

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Maybe its because of the holiday season but I feel like this is where my focus should be. If I can be there to support my friends and family, if I make time to teach the kids a life lesson(whether they are ready for it or not), if I can find time to relax and share a laugh with my unconventional family or a friend, isn’t that what I should reflect on at the end of the day? Um, HELL YEAH it is! Basically 90% of life is headed the right direction, that’s just about as good as it gets!

My 40’s have made me appreciate that time is a gift. I don’t want silly distractions, like a number on the scale robbing me of it. Each year I am reminded of how much the kids change, and how the moments throughout the year and especially at the holidays are unique every time. I want to soak it all up, even the inevitable family bickering. Let’s face it, the bickering is often the entertainment😉

I would love for everyone to give themselves the gift of kindness and understanding this holiday. It’s easy to take a breath and be kind to a stranger, we’re taught that from an early age. It should be just as easy to be kind, and patient to ourselves. Be as understanding and forgiving when we miss a goal as we would if a friend did. I want to focus on enjoying all the wonderful moments the holidays are sure to bring and better yet truly enjoy and have fun with all the wonderful people in my life. Hoping your holiday season is already off to a warm, cozy and happy start!

It’s Official…

I closed on my house yesterday, woohoo😊 Everything has either been moved into storage or moved in! Notice I said moved in, not actually unpacked. I’m seriously wishing I had a fairy Godmother. You know one simple bippity boppity boo and everything would dance right into place.

There’s so much stuff! It has officially taken over the house which is starting to produce some serious anxiety for my BF and I. Clutter has a way of making me feel scattered, probably because I can’t find what I need. Or, maybe it’s because it brings out the procrastinator in me. I’m not much for avoidance, I mean that never solves any problems, but when the clutter and chaos get to a certain point, it’s tough to get motivated. Who wants to dive into the mound of randomness that has built up over the last several weeks?

On the upside it’s not because of my once very sloppy nature; in my 20’s my closet was a waist high pile of clothes mounded on the floor, I would spend tons of time digging until I found what I wanted. My high school locker was even worse, I couldn’t even close it, I think at one point I was keeping things in my friend’s lockers. I was such a mess, it’s amazing I got through a day back then! At least at this point in my life I can blame the mess on moving.

This mess is rapidly becoming a serious problem, it looks like it could threaten my ability to start decorating for Christmas! That is so not happening. Hallmark Christmas movies are in full swing, the leaves are falling, Thanksgiving is early this year, and all the decorations are under one roof. I even know where we put them. My BF dedicated an entire storage area for Christmas decorations. Basically, that means this mess has got to go by the end of this weekend! The kitchen will be completely cleaned and organized, the kids are going to wrap up putting their remaining items away and I will take advantage of the organizing Jon did yesterday and wrap up the garage.

I’m ready to tap into my inner Clark Griswold and bust out the blow ups for the yard, oh yeah… that’s plural!!! I’m pretty sure my mom was on the verge of disowning me because of my love of holiday blow ups. Last year for my birthday I was given a 12’ Santa’s sleigh for the front, I’m not sure if he noticed when we moved, but I brought an 8’ snowman, a cute blow up Christmas tree and a happy penguin. I might be the only person who admits to loving these fine decorations, but it’s all good. What they lack in class they make up for in making people smile. Last year Carter proved my theory that they make people happy. As soon as he saw Santa’s sleigh he ran yup and gave Santa a big ol’ hug. (I should probably mention Carter was 4 at the time😊). That’s really the goal, we want to make people feel welcome, have some fun, create new memories and make the house twinkle inside and out!

It’s time to start thinking about gathering with family, baking some goodies, listening to holiday music, watching our favorite movies, and playing some games. It’s definitely the most wonderful time of the year!!!

Big Time Fail

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At this point in my life I’ve had my share of failures. I’d say each day there is probably something I fail at. Some failures are frustrating, like forgetting my laptop at home and not realizing I forgot it until I pull into the parking lot at work, (yeah that actually happened today). Some failures I tend to be a repeat offender, glance through my photo albums, or Facebook, the bad hairstyles and fashion misses just keep coming.

Outside of the poor fashion choices, I try to understand my failures and learn from them. I think we’ve all heard someone say you’ll learn more from your failures than your successes. I agree with this statement completely!

There’s one fail in life that many people face and for some reason this one seems like the fail is taken like it’s the final verdict, a failure. This failure comes burdened with guilt, not the type of guilt that lands you in jail, the useless emotional version of guilt. The BIG doozy, divorce.

The negative stigma that I associated with this failure initially kept me from realizing how important it was to pause and step back. I accepted this was a failure and that was all there was to be said about it. Even worse probably one I would repeat, because if I could be successful in a relationship, wouldn’t I have chosen to make it work??? What was wrong with me?!? These are the feelings that kept me from understanding what I was going through and why it was a significant time in my life.

I had to start somewhere so I started by spending some quality time reflecting. I’m not gonna sugar coat it, I was big ol’ hot mess! I felt lost because I was. To get through it, there were a few adult beverages, some tears and lots of phone calls to my friends who had the courage to stick with me. My most important lesson was be engaged. I needed to stop doing things because I thought other people wanted me to or expected me to. It was time to start participating in life with intent. Help others when I want to help, when I have the energy, not out of obligation. This choice alone was very empowering, it made me less resentful and improved my sunshiny disposition A LOT!

Being engaged helped me be present with my kids. It was devastating facing giving up 50% of my time. What time taught me is make the most of the time you have.  Now when I have them, they have my full attention. I’m not too busy talking on the phone or cleaning the cabinets, I give them my time. In the past I had been there, but I wasn’t present. Now, we talk about important things like Fortnite and dance. (I’m kidding, my son thinks Fortnite is important, so important he lost his passport while in a foreign country because he was Snapchatting a picture of him with a llama to his friends. Apparently, llamas are a big deal in Fortnite, insert motherly eyeroll here.) While I don’t think the video game itself is important, understanding how he spends his time, knowing what he and his sister are doing and being a part of their daily is important and fun! My relationship with both my son and daughter has become stronger in their teen years, and that makes me proud.

In my personal relationship, I learned how to have a voice. Listening to my partner and understanding when he needs support makes me feel good. Having a partner who listens to me and supports me on my good and bad days is how I know I’ve grown. Sounds simple, but anyone who has been in a relationship where they aren’t heard by their partner will know how important and challenging this is, not to mention no fun! Sometimes I can’t believe how much I enjoy being in my relationship, its feels like the very first time, and in some ways, it is😊

The biggest mistake I could have made would have been not learning from this failure. I have learned who I am, how to forgive myself, and I’ve gained confidence in myself and my choices. Through the process I have become a better mom and am a much better partner because I own this failure. Knowing that what felt like my biggest failure could turn into me having a healthy, happy life filled with love makes me feel very blessed. I will always have room to keep improving, but over the last 6 years, I feel like I have traveled a million miles.

Life’s daily challenges can feel like walking a Lego covered path barefoot, but I’m telling you, it’s so worth it!beach-dark-dawn-39853

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