Friday, November 04, 2011


     5 weeks ago I started my dream job.  I went through college with 2 small kids to raise.  I worked my ass off and all I wanted was a job in the hospital, preferably RI hospital.  My work had paid off, it was mine.  The first week I felt overwhelmed.  The second week I felt nauseous about not only my lack of competence for what I was expected to do, but at the reality of being a hospital nurse.  Week 4 I finally started to come to an internal peace over it all.  Competence was slightly above minimal, and there was a light though one that looked a whole hell of different than the one I expected, but acceptable.

      I was a bit worn down but working towards a positive view, holding onto it with the whole ungodly white knuckle feeling. Biggest mantra was I have a job, and will be able to breathe financially in a few months.

    Cue this morning…

   My alarm goes off, I hit snooze as always (I set  it for 15 minutes earlier than I absolutely must get out of bed)  I then woke up 50 minutes after I thought I had hit snooze when my husband nudged me and said “Hun, don’t you have to go to work?”.  I  admit my shallowness…I was annoyed and thought WTF,  50,ass, I just hit snooze, you are interrupting my  10 minutes of sleep..grrrr.  Looked at my phone, it was actually 50 minutes later and I had exactly 6 minutes to go from groggily looking at my phone in my warm bed to being physically driving to work to even have- a chance at being on time.  My pre-planning of having everything laid out down to socks, bra, ironed scrubs, packed lunch/breakfast and Keurig cup with to-go coffee cup locked and loaded with Truvia packet made it happen!!  Even turned on a cartoon for Connor lad.  Got less than 5 minutes from home…engine light starts blinking…car starts bucking intermittently?  Acceleration slowing…..another words fucking shitty car is dying…WTF.  I am pissed; I keep going with the car now being definitively late, and being concerned about actually destroying the car.  But I can’t call in yet at 5 weeks.  So I limped into the parking lot with my dying car.  I was already 3 minutes late.  And my car, will I have to buy a car just when I thought I might be able to breathe 5 seconds financially.  Will I never get ahead?  Ugggggghhhhhhhhh….

    5 steps later I hear tires screeching and crashing behind me and turn and see one car spinning out and one crashing into the Jersey barrier on Rte 95 South.  Then other cars screeching to a halt just in time as they saw the predicament in the 2 high speed lanes.  It took 10 seconds.  The accident didn’t look so bad as to cause life threatening issues.   But wow that is a much worse start to a day.  And while not life threatening it could totally disrupt lives! 

   But it changed my attitude.  I went in with a positive attitude centered on what’s important.  My day went smoothly (it actually went less smoothly than most days…but it felt smoother) and I saw it is all perspective.  Was I profiting off of someone else’s bad luck, or did I decide when a shit storm happens you might as well pick the flowers that grow out of it?

Friday, February 05, 2010

The Quest for more energy

So it is February and in January I was supposed to set resolutions revolving around getting more energy and track my progress...seeing as it is February 5th and I am now setting the resolutions...I guess we don't have to belabor the obvious point that I haven't done so well at keeping them!

And my excuse...drum roll please...I don't have enough freaking energy!!

Though I have been ruminating on the topic and percolating on it since I bought the Happiness Project by Gretchen Rubin.  My starting off points were 1) go to sleep earlier (by 10:30 if not working), 2) exercise at least 3 times a week, 3) get rid of the clutter and mess, 4) fake it till you make it philosophy

So #1 I am meeting with limited success.  Though when I go to bed before 10 pm and am not woken up by Connor to either find his binky or change his wet sheets (yes he is three and still sleeps with a binky, definitely don't have the energy to tackle that right now!)  I definitely am happier the next day and more energetic.  The day may not be "happy" but I don't feel like I am going to pass out from exhaustion at 10 am and 3 pm.  But it is really hard to stick to.  I feel like I am being robbed of my me time if I go to bed before 10...yet I rarely do much other than watch tv, search the internet or pretend I am studying after 10.  Sometimes doing the obviously best thing is obnoxiously hard to do.

#2 much more limited success, I think I have averaged once a week since January 1st...scary but true.  I know that I am more energetic, sane and happy when I exercise at least 3 times a week if not 4 or 5...but another priority always inserts itself...definitely going to try harder this coming month.

#3  I am ridiculous in this area.  I really did make some great progress in this area over winter break from school.  And it did make me happier and frees up some energy for me, the mess and disorganization sucks my energy it really does.  My bedroom still needs closets and bureaus purged of clothes.  But it is no longer the dumping ground for every piece of crap upstairs that doesn't have a home.  And you can see my closet floor and the shelf in the upper closet is organized with even some spare space.  The kids area in the basement was and i stress was organized...not so much now.  And oh the garage, the embarassment of my garage...which wouldn't be so bad except you have to walk through it to get to our living area in the basement!  The Christmas stuff is there right in my face every day waiting to go into the attic.  I have a good rationalization for that, it is a waste to pack it up there until the outdoor lights are with it.  That worked when we had a foot of snow outside, that has been gone for quite a while now, I am holding onto a whiny tenuous BS excuse that doesn't even fool me that it is cold outside :-)

4)  Doing much better with this, convincing myself that playing catch with the kids is more energizing than laying on the couch, because really it is.  What has 10 minutes on the couch ever done for me??  Why do I continue to try to convince myself that somehow if I just try to vegitate there for 10 minutes it will make me somehow ready to go tackle whatever from the pile of things I choose to tackle more?
But playing with my kids for 10 or 15 minutes being silly and crazy does in fact energize me, despite often not wanting to do it in the slightest.

So there you go, I am off to go vegitate on the couch for 10 minutes while determining it is too cold to go take the lights off the bushes out front...


Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Why make a project of trying to be happy, and what is being happy anyways??

So this week the topic is why are you doing this project? What is your history in trying to be more happy? What does happiness look like for you?

Thought provoking which is good, gives me some direction which is even better (thanks Minivan Mom!)

I am doing this project because my friend blogged about it and it just hit me as a thing to do, clicked, seemed like the right thing to try at the moment! I am a big picture person, I like to accumulate the information and details to fill in the missing pieces, but I am not a details person as far as put them there physically, I like thinking about where they should go, if they belong, where else they may belong, what does belong mean anyways...and then the picture remains in my mind.

It seems to me that this project both the book by Gretchen Rubin and the lead being taken by my friend will give a little organization and accountability to doing something about my thinking. And if it doesn't well I will enjoy the thinking!

My history in seeking happiness is pretty varied. I have been through 2 depressions and PMDD and they are definitely different than being unhappy as Gretchen Rubin points out in her book. Dealing with general unhappiness is something that I work on at times...but then exams come up, work gets there, no sleep from infancy days, confusing pursuit of fun with happiness...and I derail. I have found things that definitely improve my overall level of happiness in the long haul average across the days perspective like exercising regularly, meditating daily, going to church regularly, eating healthy foods, getting enough sleep, taking time to play with my kids, date nights with my husband, and having an organized clean house...but they all seem like work at times...and work isn't fun, right?

Than there are the blissful times where it all just seems to magically flow for some unknown reason! And Wheeeeeeeeeee that is fantastic. When I just seem to 9 times out of 10 wake up happy. I go with the flow, smiles come easily, patience is there, I have's all good.

I think happiness looks to me like balance and a peaceful easy feeling. And energy, energy, energy...being tired all the time just kills the happiness and brings on the unhappiness through me being snappy, impatient and glass is half empty type of girl. I wonder if energy and unhappiness is a bit of a vicious cycle? Being unhappy makes me tired, being tired makes me bring on more unhappiness, cue the tired.

Looking forward to working on this project...been doing purging of the closets, getting house organized, almost ready to paint the kitchen (finally), and exercising a bit. Am happy to have Minivan Mom taking a directional lead to keep me going when school starts!



Sunday, January 03, 2010

Happiness Project

My best friend from high school posted about the Happiness Project and her intention to read the book and dive in and blog weekly about it. I had one of those ah-ha moments as I read her post and followed over to the something clicked into place.

I went out right after work to buy the book. I am a few chapters in. I am really enjoying the book, and gaining insights. But truthfully I think it is the structure I need more than anything. I have been on a journey towards a happiness project for the last few years; but it seems that I read, I try, I dabble, but things don't stick. Rather than beat myself up about that I see it as the tools have been collected waiting for a blueprint.

I am choosing to see it as fate reaching out through one of the most amazing woman I have had the privilege to have called true friend reaching through the pixels of the internet to show me some blueprints.

So I am going to step outside my comfort zone and blog a bit about the journey...

There are a zillion thoughts percolating through my mind, the pieces I have picked up along the the Power of Now, true nutrition, exercise, love is all there is, spirituality, balance, organization (blech that will be an often revisited struggle in this blog I forsee), going to bed when tired (not that I am typing at 11:40 pm and I was tired enough to go to sleep at 5:30 pm!).

But I will leave those percolations percolating as I figure out what exactly my project means to me and how it will look...and as I do organize. I have 3 weeks left until nursing school starts and a disorganized mess of a house to tackle and a kitchen to paint...more than enough to keep me with resolutions for that time!

Following the previously mentioned amazing woman's lead on the blog posts, and her suggestion of 10 things you love about where you live...I am going to focus more on the very specific than many may due to my unique living situation. Though I may wax poetic a bit about RI in general...because yes it is home.

10. Lessons worth instilling aren't always easy to learn or live yourself. We live with my husband's Nana (who is now my Nana too :-) ). She is 94 years old and is amazingly independent, feisty and together! Living all together is a challenge to say the least at times. I am sure that often we aren't such a prize to live with as well. But despite; and in fact because of the difficulties it is a blessing. Family is often pushed aside in our culture I believe. I think my kids are learning about the centrality of family (which is a central value to us as their parents). They are learning it isn't a Hallmark card, but a daily action and it isn't always easy...but it is always worth it. They have come to know their Gigi in a way they never would otherwise. Years fly by and the inevitability of our short time here on earth shall come. They truly know Nana and that is a gift many don't get in their lives. And in return she knows her great grandchildren in an intimate fashion that most great grandparents never even get to dream of.

9. I have the economic freedom to return to school. I am going to nursing school at the moment. I still work 20 hours a week, though I will be cutting down to 14 this coming semester. Life is ridiculously crazy at that workload. If we had to completely float a household financially I just could not do what I am doing now. I would still be working as a Director at a group home and would probably stagnate there. But I am given the freedom to grow...there isn't a much better gift than that.

8. We have a big beautiful yard that is fenced in the back so my children can play and I can go pee without fear of a squished child in the yard.

7. Said yard is shaded by big beautiful oak trees making even the hottest days bearable (I also come to loathe these trees at the end of fall...but that is a different list). The neighborhood kids can play and escape the sun and I can sit in my zero gravity recliner and read and yes be happy!

6. Warwick is really centrally located. As a Rhode Islander that is big...much more than 30 minutes is a road trip...

5. On to general...Rhode Island...I love it, the beaches and Providence (Waterfire is fantastic!!) both within a half hour. Getting to Boston, NYC, mountains, beaches, is all what I would call a short road trip and people from other parts of the country might call an extended drive.

4. The seasons. No I have not loved shoveling, but then again I do not hate it either! I can't imagine not seeing the leaves change their colors. See them fall. Picking apples and pumpkins at the local farms. Then mark the time of cold and snow and rejoicing when the crocuses peep through and enjoying the short time of the intoxicating smell of the Lilacs. I truthfully can't even fathom not being able to go to the beach in the summer...or truthfully it being a year long treat to jump in the ocean (though I do love walking the beach off season!).

3. Family. I am blessed with a great family (including the in-laws!) and just about all of them live right here in Little Rhody. I already feel a bit too far being in Warwick with my parents, brothers and Grandmother all being in South Kingstown. I can't imagine having to take a flight away from my "home" if I wanted to be a part of the huge extended family Christmas Eve, or to hug my Mom, or for my kids to see their cousins.

2. History. I have lived here my whole life with the exception of one semester spent in Richmond, Virginia (me and the South didn't mix well to say the least). Anywhere I go there are memories. Some of them aren't necessarily of the me being all I can be, but they were me nonetheless. There is a comfort in making new memories in old places....

1. Liberal Oasis. Despite being in the nation's minority on a plethora of issues near and dear to my heart...I live in ignorant bliss of that fact...except the boy scouts...

Wednesday, December 31, 2008

A New Year just begun...

I don't do resolutions...I tend to break them...from excercizing, to quitting things, to not interrupting, etc, etc...

But I can do general directions and they are always the same...honor the good health I have been given more, spend more time appreciating the "namaste" in my children and my husband, try to spread the agape love farther if I succeed at the previous, and have a bit more fun.

This coming year I so hope to be one of 5 in the competitive slot in the nursing program! My daughter at dinner tonight when we were saying what we hope for this coming year said "seeing the look on Momma's face when she gets into the nursing program", from my babe's mouth to God's ears is all I have to say!

It has been an up and down year, but very blessed all things considered!

Lucky, lucky are we!

Happy New Year to all!

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Boy scouts

It is a while away with Connor only pushing 22 months old.

But we have already had several uncomfortable silent or non-commital moments surrounding his potential boy-scout hood. We have a united front that as it stands he will not be a boy scout and that we should address how we feel about it with him prior to it becoming a want for him.

As long as the boy scouts officially disallows homosexual or atheist members we are unwilling to support them as they don't reflect our family values. However, they reflect a lot of other community/family values we do find honorable. And they just seem so much not on the front lines of the culture wars and so innocuous, it is hard to summon up a will to go to bat against them!

Plus to give an answer as to why no for Connor seems to make an atagonist relationship with other parents.

If anyone reads this, what say you, LOL?

Wednesday, July 02, 2008

She's growing up

First of all my baby girl has her first loose tooth! I wasn't prepared for how that would hit me, but seriously I got all misty eyed, what the hell is wrong with me? She is soooo proud of it and announces that she now "feels like she is ready for college!" I told her to back it on up and tackle Kindergarten first.

So that was two days ago. Today she is leaving the basement to go upstairs and as she is going up the stairs I say don't forget to close the door honey. She rolls her eyes and closes the door. Five minutes later she comes back downstairs and calmly and maturely says "Mom can you please not me remind me to shut the doors anymore? I hear it a lot all day from you and GeeGee about the doors and it really gets me frustrated because I know to close the doors and it makes me feel like you don't trust me." I take a deep breath tell her sure I can do that, and contemplate how it is that my five year old handles this situation with more maturity and grace than I handle my 93 year old Nana-in law nagging me....maybe she is ready for college.

So this post is to my Princess Mikayla Rosie (yes I have given in she is a princess despite my sure knowledge she would be a tomboy just like me). She has grown into such a lovely young girl and is ready to lose her first tooth and enter the big wide world of public school in August, where has the time gone?!?

Mikayla's last day of pre-K at the Y's Owl

ready for summer fun