Life has been exhausting lately.
Explaining myself. Explaining stupid shit that grown adults with half a brain should know. Running around like a lunatic, literally spending about four waking hours per week at my home. Dealing with things in my life that are all kinds of new. Having a sleep disorder. Christmas in Toyland.
It's all very exhausting.
My mind never stops. Work is wearing on me. Life is wearing on me.
I don't even have time to sign up for the gym, let alone actually go there and get on a treadmill.
Yet, in some ways, I really am putting myself first. I know that sounds hard to believe.
Despite the exhaustion, I am happy. For the first time in a really long time, I feel safe and loved.
I get to spend Christmas with my entire family -- all my brothers and their wives and children. I am beyond excited, and fully expect flames to come out of my Toys R Us credit card sometime between now and Dec. 24.
I keep saying that the year coming up will be my year. This time I might actually be serious.
At this rate, I have a feeling that might be even more exhausting.
Stay tuned, folks. I promise that it will be great.
The Scarlet Letter
Somewhere along the way, women are taught (actually, young girls are taught) that it's impolite to talk about our periods. We call it stupid names like "the curse" or the oh-so-dreaded "Aunt Flo."
(Seriously, "Aunt Flo" makes me want to punch people in the face. I'm 37 years old, and I'm 99.9999 percent sure the only person I "know" named Flo is that annoying chick from the Progressive commercials. More annoying, I might add than my period. Perhaps that was intentional.)
The only thing more insulting to women than calling our menstrual periods by stupid names like "Aunt Flo" are period commercials. We don't ride bikes in white shorts. We're not walking along the beach with our moms because tampons are so awesome. And that whole "Have a Happy Period" campaign from a few years ago? That guy better hope I don't meet him in a dark alley.
When I was in grade school, I was pretty much down for the count when I got my period every month. I would sit in the school office, drinking hot tea and eating children's Tylenol for three days every month. It was pretty much hell. In high school, it was not much different.
At the beginning of my college career, there were still days when I couldn't leave bed to go to class. You can't miss several days in a row of college before it seems like you are flushing thousand-dollar bills down the toilet. Luckily, a girl in my dorm told me about her recent trip to the health center. She'd gotten on birth control pills and she had no cramps and her period was only three days long. Where did I sign up for this?
Needless to say, I completed the women's sexual health seminar, went to see the doctor and left with my little plastic packet of pills. I had no intentions of having sex; I was just sick of ruining all my clothes and crying while curled up in a ball watching Days of Our Lives. For most of my adult life, I took my little pills almost faithfully everyday. When I started having trouble with my blood pressure, my doctors switched me to the NuvaRing (also known as the most glorious pharmaceutical ever made) and I took that for several years.
Until I didn't anymore. Three years ago, I was having some health issues and my doctor told me to stop using my NuvaRing until they got cleared up.
After many years of delightfully balanced hormones, I was back to being a 12-year-old girl. And since my teens were the most glorious time of my life, it was so much fun. Acne (acne!), cramps, periods that last half my life and ruin all my clothes. And the mood swings...Oh, the mood swings. I am pretty sure I'd kill a man dead once a month for a Coke Zero and a Twix bar. Throw in some migraines, and it's such a wonderful time every month.
When my medical issues cleared up just shy of my 35th birthday, I asked for my NuvaRing back, only to be told that I am too old. When I went to the doctor last month (at 37), I asked if I could have it back if I lost weight because I would seriously starve myself to get my glorious hormones back, only to be told that women over 35 just can't have hormonal birth control. Why on God's green earth do we get our period until age 50 if birth control isn't safe after 35? In my next life, I'll be a chemist and save the world...for women, at least.
So, here I am utterly miserable. My body aches. I have a mid-grade fever. I want to kill people for candy and potato chips. I am getting ready to leave work to drink tea and watch Lifetime Movies while I'm curled up in a little ball. I wonder if everyone notices that every 28 days I miss the first Tuesday of the month. At least you could set your watch by it. I have to get home soon before my new tan dress pants are ruined.
I know this has all been TMI and you're all sitting at home wondering why the eff I've shared all this. I could blame my hormones and punch you in the face, but I did it for two reasons. 1) We should all talk about our periods so we don't all feel alone about it. and 2) I need to talk to someone because both by OB/GYN and my PCP just discount my problems. A grown woman cannot waste all her sick days to have her period. I'm sure it's why women are less respected in the workplace. My problems are totally real and they are scary and it bothers me that not only does no one care, but no one seems to have any type of solution.
I remember when I first got my period I asked what women did before there were pads and tampons and I was told that they just stood over a clump of mud and grass (no idea if this is true or not, and my 20+ year memory could be fuzzy). But really, even with an entire aisle of feminine protection items at our disposal, we haven't made much progress in the discussion and treatment of hormone-related illnesses. I just refuse to believe that this is my lot in life because I have two X chromosomes.
Happy period. Ha.
Hot diggity dog!
Once a month, I go to my therapist and we talk about how people judge me about my weight and how I feel about that.
And after I leave there, I go next door to the best hotdog place in the world and get a hotdog and onion rings.
Then the next day, I get back to my fruit smoothies and breakfast burritos.
Why am I telling you this?
I am not exactly sure. Not only is not any of your damn business, but I would think that these mundane details of my life would bore people. I also know from losing an hour of my life and a $59 copay that it's OK to eat whatever you want and it's not doing you any favors to be terrified of food.
I don't know why I am bitching about this except that every freaking month I go and have a great hour at therapy and then it's always less than hour when I get back to real life and someone undoes everything I was just feeling great about. Every. Single. Time.
I'm not sure what the point of bitching about it is except that this is my blog and I'm allowed to bitch about whatever I want. Nothing's ever going to change so there's no point in saying anything. Even when I recently did have a weight-related incident that was so inappropriate that I felt the urge to say something to my boss, it didn't change the overwhelmingly negative attitude of all the fat-haters in this office. Basically it was just chalked up to some people are mean girls and they aren't going to change.
While I was enjoying my smoothie (no, seriously, it was quite good), I read my little Overeaters Anonymous daily meditation. I wish I could say that it has given me some sort of inner peace, but it hasn't. I'm going to just wrap up with this and cry for a little bit.
Life would probably be awesome if people didn't try their damnedest to get me down at every corner.
The Friend Zone
First off, I have been making an effort to disconnect more
often. Sometimes I shut my phone off or leave it behind. Very rarely do I have
the ringer on. And, just because we can do everything with our phones doesn’t
mean we should. But, let me just tell you: It flips people out. If you don’t
answer a text, email or facebook message in about 14 seconds, you will never
hear the end of it. So close to stalking, folks are. I’m just hoping I’ve never
been like that. Ninety-nine percent of life is not happening on the Internet.
It really isn’t.
Now that I’m done with that rant, let’s concentrate on
today’s slightly related topic in the adventures of online dating: The Friend
As someone who’s always been at least a little pudgy, I’m
intimately acquainted with The Friend Zone. I have lived there with almost
every male friend I’ve ever had. A few times it’s been blurred; sometimes with
good consequences and sometimes not. But for the most part, that’s where I live
while everyone else goes off and has babies and such. I’m 37 years old, so that
ship has sailed. I’m OK with that, especially when I see my friends who have
issues with their spouses and I’m over here doing my own thing. However, any
conversation on The Friend Zone would be incomplete if I didn’t bemoan its
existence just a little for that reason alone.
While I’ve lived in The Friend Zone for most of the last 25
years, I’ve recently had occasion to be on the other side of this place. Let me
share these little scenarios with you.
The first trip to The Friend Zone was with a guy I’d gone a
few dates with. I’m not positive he would’ve stayed there, but he decided it
wasn’t worth chancing it and moved on to bigger and better things. I liked him
spending time with him and I thought maybe things could develop with him, but
he felt like he was in The Friend Zone and basically told me off and then I’m
pretty sure he blocked me. Oh well, his loss. I heard a long time ago that the
only way to see if a man is truly interested is to make him work for it, and
honestly that’s probably the best advice I’ve ever received. My last real
boyfriend had to go several dates without a goodnight kiss, mostly because if
things get physical too early it usually spells disaster. And I wanted to see
exactly what his motives were because I thought he might be around for a while.
So, really I’m not fretting over that situation, although I think that folks
would do better to have a conversation with the actual other person involved
rather than with whoever lives inside their brain when deciding that things
were hopeless in a relationship. However, if he’s that insecure then I will
probably be OK without him.
The second trip to The Friend Zone has been a much longer
journey. I think by now we all know that I love the show Catfish because it’s
everything that’s wrong with the world, yet I believe Nev really does want to
help the people on the show. Even though most of them are utterly helpless, but
I don’t want to get off track here. The whole fact that Manti Teo could spend
four years in an imaginary relationship (with a dude) completely and totally
validates my decision to not ever pursue a long-distance relationship with a
person from the Internet. This is mostly because I don’t have the time or the
energy to chase someone around the country (and this completely and totally is
the opposite of making a man work for it) and I am just not getting burned.
Until I meet someone, they are just words on a computer or a phone, not even a
real person at all. I will be friends with someone who lives a million miles
away and just wants to text, but I truly and honestly believe it’s impossible
to “fall in love” with someone with the help of AT&T and I just won’t let
my brain go there.
So with all that intro, it’s easy to understand why this guy
in question is in The Friend Zone. I think he lives in Virginia. The last time
I was doing online dating, he contacted me and I told him: “I don’t do
long-distance relationships. Not happening.” And he told me he just wanted to
be friends. So, I guess he actually put
himself in The Friend Zone, although that’s the best he was ever going to get
Completely related sidebar: Did anyone see the episode of
Catfish where basically this guy met a girl and she tried to tell him that she
was Catfishing him and he just heard what he wanted because he was so desperate
to be in his imaginary relationship with some texts on a screen? (I’m a cynic;
So, back to the guy who I think lives in Virginia and I’m
not even 100% sure of his name because a) he’s from the Internet and could be
lying and b) I don’t add anyone to my phone book until they are worth keeping.
I only know who he is at all when he texts me because he is the only person
with that area code. True story.
He’s decided he has feelings for me. I told him that was
unfortunate because I don’t do long-distance (or people whose names I don’t
know, but I left that part out). He calls me love, which annoys me because
there’s no way he loves me and I hate pet names. He tells me what he wants to
do to me, and I ignore him. It’s so healthy. I reiterated last night that I
have always been completely and totally forthright with the fact that I have
zero feelings for him (I’m not even sure he’s actually in The Friend Zone
because at this point he is just fucking creepy, if we’re being honest) and
nothing is ever going to happen with us. However, he keeps telling me he’s
coming to visit me and blah blah blah. Seriously, it’s so pathetic that I don’t
even know what to say anymore.
My roommate says that I’m too harsh about long-distance
relationships with strangers from the Internet. Considering all the bullshit
that I’ve put up with from strangers from the Internet who didn’t want to do
me, and the fact that the only long-distance relationship I ever had was really
just a relationship with the nurse practitioner at my doctor’s office at the
end of the day, it’s just not ever happening. If Mark Wahlberg sent me a
Facebook message right now and asked me to sext with him and be his imaginary
online girlfriend, I still wouldn’t do it. Mark Wahlberg. That’s how serious I
am about this. And what happens if you like a person from the internet? Fake
skype sex? It’s not like anyone’s just going to pack up his life and drop
everything to come be with someone from the internet. Right?
What do you think? Is it possible to feel love for someone
you’ve never met? Is it possible to have a relationship with words on a screen?
Do you know anyone who’s actually packed up his or her entire life and moved
who-knows-where for love with someone they met online? Or is it just that
people are so starved for contact with another person that they’ll do whatever
it takes to have that? And, mostly, why would anyone who’s relatively
attractive (or is a huge college football star, for example) just not go out
and find someone in real life?
I just don’t get it, so if you have the answers, please feel
free to explain.
Song of the day: “Online” by Brad Paisley
Panic at the Disco
OK, I am not really in a disco, but I am in full-fledged freak-out mode.
I have exactly 63 days, or nine weeks, to get ready for this Disney race. I bought $200 running shoes. My training runs aren't horrendous, but they're not as fast as they need to be. I still have nine weeks to work on them. As one of my friends points out, total couch potatoes (which I'm not) can start Couch to 5K and be running 3 miles no problem in nine weeks. I kept a faster pace in Detroit (although that was 1,700 years ago). However, I have complete and total dread about the "balloon ladies" and the sweeper buses that are part of the Run Disney experience.
I plan to get to the race as early as possible so that I can get at the front of my corral because the pace time doesn't start until the last person crosses the starting line. I plan to run every single day between now and October 5. I know my adrenaline will kick in. I know there will be people behind me. I know there are other big girls who will be out on that course.
I have done this before, and I can do it now, but I am still pretty sure that the next 63 days will be nothing but pure terror, and not the good kind on my favorite ride that inspired that race.
My family is going to be there. I do not want to completely and totally embarrass myself in front of my family. The medals for the race are cool as shit. I do not want to not get my medal. I do not want to run every day for the next 63 days, fly all the way to freaking Orlando and spend an assload of money to run through Disney World and have to go on a bus to the finish line, where I may or may not get a medal that I may or may not deserve.
I just need to hustle. I need to hustle just like I did with FINALLY cleaning my room on the 15 month anniversary of moving into my house. I hadn't ever unpacked; I just had piles of shit everywhere, and a bet with my roommate that I couldn't get it in order by the end of July meant that I got two hours of sleep last night but my room looks amazing. All I need to do is put up all the art, find a nightstand and reupholster the chair that I have for in there, and it will be perfect.
Much like the last few days have been totally crazy cleaning my room because I never have time, I need to make time over the next 63 crazy days to get ready for this race. Actually from reading last year's feedback, I am going to start running every night outside in the Tennessee heat because I really need to be prepared mentally and physically for the climate in Florida at the beginning of October. I also need to train on hills, so I'm ready for the overpasses on Osceola Parkway.
I know I am being overly ambitious, but I think I will be OK. I am really grumpy because I wanted to do a 10K and not 10 miles, and they didn't add one at Disney until after I was already committed to this race. After this I'll be doing a half somewhere, and then at some point I will conquer 8 Tuff Miles on St. John.
I know I can do this. I just need to freak out a little.
Maybe a good freak out will make me work harder. Cheerleaders would help too, if you're interested.
Tune in, Music City
If you follow me on Twitter (which you should, by the way),
you may (or may not) have been entertained by my live-tweets during the
broadcast of ABC’s “Nashville” television show.
There’s sex, lies, drama and music. It’s very entertaining. (Like
Dallas, only Nashville.) But mostly I watch it because it’s filmed in
I wish I could say I watch it because I’m filled with civic
pride and it's high-quality television entertainment, but that would mostly be a
I watch it because, as we here in the South would say, it’s
a hot mess. Nashville’s hot mess. I work in health care, so maybe that’s really
what it’s like on Music Row, but I drink a lot of whiskey, and I’ve never seen
such sights in any honkytonk on Broadway.
"Nashville" is pure soap opera with some mediocre singing
thrown in. It’s everything that’s both wrong and right in this town. I can’t
help but tune in every week, and I love to talk about it. From Gay Cowboy and
Sober Companion to Kellie Pickler Jr. and Tammy from “Friday Night Lights,”
these folks entertain me. Plus, I like to see what local landmarks show up,
guess where they’ve filmed and see if any of my friends are appear in that week’s
episode (usually, the answer is yes to that one).
There is a lot of talk right now about the possibility of “Nashville”
not being filmed in Nashville anymore, and that makes me sad. It makes me sad
because, if that happens, I will break up with it faster than the ex who sent
me vacation photos with another woman’s purse in ALL OF THEM.
The city of Nashville is a character in this show, just like
Rayna (oops, Tammy) or Deacon (he needs a nickname – maybe “Baby Daddy Deacon”?).
Hell, it’s a bigger character than Crazy Peggy or the black guy who ran for
mayor and is also Baby Daddy Deacon’s AA sponsor. And unlike “Grey’s Anatomy,” which I still
tolerate even though they killed my precious McSteamy, Nashville is not a
character that I can stand losing.
The show’s not great. The only real thing it’s got going for
it is that it’s filmed in one of the coolest-ass cities in America. I suspect
from all of the Nashvillians tweeting on Wednesday nights that I’m not the only
one who watches mostly because it’s filmed here. If you take that away, it will
seem really artificial like when they tried to film that cop show about Detroit
in Atlanta. That was stupid as shit, because try as it may, Atlanta can’t ever
be Detroit (it’s probably thankful for that, by the way) and local landmarks
can’t be replicated. Yes, we poke fun at seeing that damn pedestrian bridge and
The Batman Building in every episode, but if you took them away, we’d be
heartbroken. And while they’ve done a damn good job at recreating the Bluebird Café
on a soundstage, if they’re going to be preposterous enough to think that all
these nobodies and famous people are getting onstage at open-mic night at
Tootsies, well, then they better at least have Tootsies be authentic.
I don’t want to break up with “Nashville.” And, I don’t want
“Nashville” to break up with us. All joking aside, it really has been a boon to
our local economy. And, as aggravated as I get by tourists, they love to spend
their money on boots and beer in this town… More boots and beer mean more money
for schools and roads.
Seriously, ABC, making everything about money is the reason
there’s a lot of bullshit on TV these days. Please don’t make me put “Nashville”
in that category.
P.S. I would watch “Dallas” if it weren’t filmed in Dallas,
but only because Patrick Duffy is still hot.
Fleeting...just like life
This will be a short post. Today a mutual friend told me that Tim Hensley
had passed. I didn't know Tim very well. I had only met him once or twice, but he was always a very kind person. I remember him as being soft-spoken. And he was young, way too young to be gone.
While I hadn't seen Tim, or most anyone from the KennyLand days, in several years, I reflected on those days today. I kind of sort of miss that big, giant ball of crazy. And, while there are many things that I'd much rather forget, there's a lot of good that came from it too.
Some of my best friends in the whole world I met out there on that wild trail. People whom I can turn to when something goes wrong and they are always there for me. Good -- no, great -- people.
And, while there are many things I would change if I had a wayback machine, for the most part that crazy -- and, let's be honest, a little bit stupid -- time in my life somehow played a part in who I am today. I wouldn't say that experience is why I'm in Nashville, but I did have a friend here that helped me make it through when I didn't know many people in this town. And, country music tends to draw people here, so I've never been particularly lonely.
Things change. People grow. Acquaintances and friends come in and out of your life. All of that is part of the fabric of who you are.
Life is short. Hug your loved ones and kiss your babies. Be true to who you are, even if that person's a little nuts.
Song of the day: "Young" by Kenny Chesney