How things can change in an instant

Two days ago, I had a pretty nasty fall off my bike and, along with bruises everywhere on my body, lacerated my arm very deeply. It was the worst accident I’d had since the time I momentarily blacked out in 2011. Well, this time, I was able to finish my workout and bike back home (so it couldn’t have been THAT bad, right?), all the while hoping that my local Urgent Care (right across the street from my home) was open.

Imagine my relief when I rolled in at 4pm on Christmas Eve, and they were open, and the angels there (yes, I really do consider them angels!) took such prompt and excellent care of me, got me stitched up (eight stitches), prescribed antibiotics (thank goodness my local pharmacy was still open, too!), and then sent me on my way.

This whole episode has seriously got me reconsidering making a move somewhere and starting anew with… everything. I mean, is it really worth it? The whole point of moving is to have a fresh start somewhere, totally on my own, but maybe I don’t need to do something so drastic. After all, everything, and I mean everything, I need and could want is right here.

Ugh, I just don’t know what to do.  I mean, I hadn’t even been thinking of being close to an urgent care facility or just good medical facilities in general, but Thursday’s episode was a harsh reminder.  Maybe, just maybe what I’ll do is stay put where I am, and travel extensively.  I’ll travel by myself, so I’ll still have the sense of being on my own and forging my own way, but I won’t have to regret making an expensive and long-term error.

I don’t know.  I don’t know.  All I do know is that my mind isn’t completely made up.  I mean, how I long for this sense of adventure!  But is it worth it????

 

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Bossypants, by Tina Fey

Ok, so this is my last book review of 2015, and maybe my last one for good, because I want to try writing about me, and not just what I read.

Bossypants, by Tina Fey, is a humor-filled book about Fey’s travails, from childhood to adulthood, and she includes a good dose of feminism in there as well.  Go Tina Fey!

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She talks about dating woes (wow, I can relate!!), and she went to the University of Virginia (a fellow Wahoo!), and she was always different, in terms of looks and attitude (yep, I here ya!).

She talks about how she started out working for an improv troupe, and how that was fun, but not necessarily (or at all) well paying.  She eventually landed a gig at SNL and then what became her dream gig, becoming the executive producer of 30 Rock.

And then coming back for certain SNL episodes.  Oh, who could forget Tina Fey as Sarah Palin??  Hahaha!  Her initial gig at SNL is where Fey met fellow funnywoman Amy Poehler, and the two quickly became the best of friends because they just got each other.

I loved reading this book because, although I’ve never watched 30 Rock or anything else with Tina Fey in it, I know who she is and, for some reason, I felt like, in my mind, I was reading with her voice.  At the back of the book are a couple of reviews about the audiobook format, and THAT would be so great to hear!

The one book I can immediate compare Bossypants to is Mindy Kaling’s book.  Both ladies are hilarious and relatable, and both seem like such cool people that you’d want to be friends with!

Read this book if you want to know more about Tina Fey (and why wouldn’t you??) and you like smart, funny women!

 

 

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No regrets in life

Over the past few days, or weeks, actually, I’ve been thinking about this crazy idea I have to move far away from DC.  The thought of it excites me, but it also scares me.  It excites because who wouldn’t want a chance at a new beginning?  And it scares me because I don’t really need to make this move, and I am lacking for nothing.  My life right now is very comfortable, and I have a great network of friends, and I’m afraid that I may end up being all alone if/when I move.

I just don’t want to live in regret.  If I move, it’s very likely that I could regret having left, having given up the good life with all the comforts of daily life so close to me.  But what’s more likely is that, if I stay here, I’d regret not having taken that chance, because, as is often said, you’ll regret the things that you didn’t do more than those that you did.  So yes, if I stay here, I’ll always wonder, “what if…?”  And with each passing year, it’ll just become more and more difficult for me to get myself out of this rut.  One day I’ll wake up and realize that I’m 50 and my life has been stagnant for half my life.  That for half my life, I stayed in one place because I was afraid of trying something new.

No!  I can’t let something like that happen to me!  I need to take this risk.  Even if I fail, at least I’ll have tried.  And I can always come back.  This move isn’t intended to be permanent.  It’s definitely temporary; it’s just a question of HOW temporary it is.

I’ve pretty much decided on a new place to move to, but I haven’t announced it publicly yet, partly because I’d still been a little unsure if I want to upend my life like this.  But soon…. soon, I will make the announcement :-)

This’ll be a big risk, but I think it’s healthy to take risks.  That’s the only way that we grow.  Something else that has been on my mind is the big risk I took in 2015: getting into a relationship with someone who lives in California.  In the beginning, it had felt like a dream come true and it was perfect, I was so happy.  Little red flags started popping up, and I ignored them, telling myself I was being unreasonable, and falling for his excuses.  And then there were some BIG red flags, and yet I still accepted his excuses, until all of a sudden he dropped me like a hot potato.  Cut off all contact.

There had been a part of me that kept holding on to the hope that one day, just one day he’d stop to think about the great times we had and talk to me again.  But yesterday, I got visual proof that he has moved on, and that he likely moved on while we were still together!  That would explain his behavior.  So now I’ve finally moved on, cutting all ties, and I’m so happy that I no longer live in sadness of what could have been.  Because I now know, without a doubt, that I did nothing wrong.  I took a risk, I tried my best, and HE turned out to a failure.

But what if I had never taken this risk?  To this day, I’d live in regret of what could have been.  Instead, now I know definitively that he is not someone I’d want in my life  And the certainly of that realization is very calming, very freeing.

And THAT is the approach I need to take in regards to a cross-country move!

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Nice Girls Don’t Get The Corner Office, by Lois P. Frankel

I picked up this book at a recent library booksale because of its interesting title, and it got me thinking that maybe there’d be something in here to help me.

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Nice Girls Don’t Get The Corner Office, by Lois P. Frankel, is a book describing 101 common mistakes made by women that compromise their careers.  Now, you might be thinking, does she mean that I should be a b**** to get what I want?  Not at all!  Frankel makes it clear over and over again that we need to be aware of when we’re acting like girls, as opposed to acting like grown women, and change that behavior.  But it’s not entirely our fault; society has conditioned us in this way, expects us to behave in this way.  As if we’re just children.

I figured this book would be an interesting read mainly in that I could see the silly mistakes that other women make, but that of course I don’t.  However, I was fascinated to find that some of my own behaviors were in there!  Mistakes such as “answering the phone with only your first name” and “asking for permission” were things I’d been doing.  Even though I don’t work in the kind of environment where there is so much interaction of personnel and where promotions can be subjective, being professional and confident are qualities that are never out of place.

Frankel does a great job in the layout of this book, with the mistakes (and the corresponding tips) grouped into chapters such as “How you play the game”, “How you sound”, and “How you look”.  Yes, looks do matter!

The idea of this book is that you should take the assessment in the beginning to see which areas you need to focus on, and then go to that area specifically to read those tips, and then just concentrate on improving yourself from those 4-5 mistakes.  I just read the book from start to finish, but I think I’ll definitely hang on it, since it’s very useful.  Maybe next time I’ll actually take the assessment, so I can determine what are my own “Needs most improvement” areas.

I would definitely recommend this book to all the ladies out there.  Don’t act girly, but don’t act like a bitch either.  Act like a grown woman who is confident and assertive, and watch your career soar!

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Something good out of something bad

One month ago today, I left the beautiful state of California.  In that one month, I have been through a whole range of emotions.  October 25, the night I left, is when I knew in my heart that it was all over.  As I rode on my red-eye flight, thankful for the darkness, I thought about the events of the previous week.  I re-evaluated all that had happened, and I cried.  I weeped.  Silently, so that no one else would know my heart was breaking.  I had been trying to save a sinking ship, not wanting to believe that it really could be over so suddenly, but it was.  And when I landed in Virginia several hours later, the happiness, the dream, was forever left in California.

In the past month, I have felt so much.  Sadness, guilt, confusion, anger, depression, rage, loneliness, disgust… and then, acceptance.  Acceptance that this chapter of my life is over forever.  The happy dream that I once imagined for myself would forever be just that, a dream.  I think that now, for the most part, I’ve come to terms with what happened and can just learn to appreciate it.  For a brief moment in time, I was able to connect with someone on a deeper level than I thought possible.  And all that happened because I allowed myself to go beyond my comfort zone, to do something unimaginably crazy.

And for that, I’m thankful.  I’m thankful for the experience.  In a few years, it won’t even matter to me anymore (or so I hope).  But the significant impact of this experience is that I realize I don’t want to keep living my life the way it is.  I want to do something drastic, something crazy.  And not for anyone else, just for me.  So what am I going to do?

I’m going to move.  After ten years, I’m going to move of DC this summer.  No, it’s not an absolute certainty.  No, my parents aren’t completely on-board with the idea.  No, I don’t know exactly where I’m going.  However, what I do know is that I want to move.  I want to do something scary and exciting and possibly a little fool-hardy.  For too long I have been living comfortably right where I am because I’m not wanting for anything.  But that in itself has caused boredom, because the scenery never changes.

I need to start carving out the next chapter of my life.

 

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The heart wants what it wants

It’s been two weeks since I last wrote about this, and three weeks since it all ended, but I had yet to know for sure.  I still don’t even know how to process all this, because it continues to feel like each day that I wake up, the bad dream continues.  But soon your face will fade away, and the happiness you brought me will be nothing but a distant memory.  A Christina Aguilera verse comes to mind:

How could this man I thought I knew
Turn out to be unjust, so cruel?
Could only see the good in you,
Pretended not to see the truth.
You tried to hide your lies, 
disguise yourself,
You're living in denial,
But in the end you'll see 
You won't stop me.

Those words ring so true, and it just goes to show, unbelievable as it seems, I’m not the only person in the world to whom this has happened.  Someone that I knew, a friend, someone I thought genuinely liked me and liked spending time with me, could be so deceitful.  Even This articlethough with each passing day the reality sinks in further, I still have this irrational hope that one day all this bad stuff will go away.  That all the hurt and the lies will go away and my best friend will come back.

Realistically, I know that’s not going to happen, but thinking of it that way just fills me with sadness.  I need to remain optimistic about life, yet not let myself be consumed by the thoughts of one person.  I have to remind myself that he intentionally hurt me.  He deliberately deceived me and did not make a single attempt to apologize.

This article that I’d found a few weeks, about ghosting, ago really spoke to me, as did this related article about all the unanswered questions I have.  I try to be a strong person, but it still hurts.  I took a huge leap of faith, believing the advice that, if I followed my heart, things would go my way.  But instead I fell flat on my face, totally blindsided, and grasping for answers.

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L.A. Rock & Roll Half Marathon, October 25, 2015

Ok, this blog post is also waaay late, but, I’ve had a lot on my mind and thinking about this race brought up some bittersweet memories.

Anyways, I’d signed up for the LA RnR 1/2 as a fun way to cap off my one-week trip to San Diego.  I’d hoped my friend would run it with me, but that didn’t turn out to be the case.  I hadn’t been planning to actually race this, since my last race, the Clarendon Day 5K/10K, resulted in calf cramping when I pushed myself.  NOT cool.  So my plan for this race was just to run relaxed and finished cramp-free.  Because how embarrassing would it be for me to half to end up walking part of the race when I had a friend waiting for at the finish line???

The race was early on Sunday morning (7am!), so I stayed with another friend who lives in LA, and just a couple of miles from the race start, which was VERY handy.  We drove up from San Diego on Saturday afternoon and, due to a later-than-intended departure and LOTS of freeway traffic, go to the race expo one hour before it closed.  Who ends a race expo at 5pm on a Saturday???  That was ridiculous, but at least it only took a couple minutes to get the essentials- my race bib and t-shirt.  And then we had time to walk around and try some free samples.  Race expos are becoming less exciting these days than they were years ago.  They’re waaaay more consumerist now!  I didn’t buy anything, quite simply because I didn’t need anything, and I didn’t want to cart anything back to Virginia in my luggage.

Ready to rock!!

Ready to rock!!

Sunday morning, I got to the race site with plenty of time to spare, and the weather was really comfortable.  I was pretty sure it was going to get really hot as the day went on, but it stayed overcast at least for the duration of the race and never felt too hot.  Which is definitely great!

As for the race itself, it was fun, but most certainly not “pancake flat” as advertised on the website, haha.  There were two big hills and, since it was pretty much out and back, we did those hills on the return as well.  Nice!  Being a Rock & Roll series event, there were LOTS of runners, it was crazy.  But it was well-organized and started on time.

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Before the race!

After the race!  I didn't actually wear the cape for the race itself, just for the photos.  It was a Halloween-themed race, so at least I can *pretend* I donned a costume :-)

After the race! I didn’t actually wear the cape for the race itself, just for the photos. It was a Halloween-themed race, so at least I can *pretend* I donned a costume :-)

Like I said earlier, I wasn’t really racing it, so I didn’t have a note-worthy finish time.  It wasn’t awful, it just wasn’t awesome, but it was still fun, and a nice way to end my California trip :-)

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