Archives for February 2016

Fighting Jealousy: Slaying My Green-Eyed Monster

When our air conditioner broke, we had to turn the air off for a few hours. It happened to be one of the hottest, most humid days Chicago has seen in a while. As I was coming into the house from outside, I felt the cool relief of our well-insulated home. The humidity was gone and the temperature felt lower.

Shortly after coming inside, I went down to the basement to help my boyfriend fix the air conditioner. Not 30 minutes later, I walked back upstairs to grab something, and was hit with a wall of hot and stuffy air from the exact same space that was cool less than an hour before.

The temperature hadn’t changed drastically. There was no rapid rise in humidity. But coming to that same middle ground from the opposite end of the temperature spectrum modified my perspective. I felt that the temperature was warmer because I was experiencing it from the cold angle while earlier it felt cooler because I had experienced it from the hot angle.

Shortly after experiencing this weird body temperature conundrum, my brain started connecting some crazy dots. That same physical change in perspective can be applied to emotional perspective. It was an analogy that physically made sense to me. And there are so many other ways to consider how your perspective affects your life.

The same situation can be completely different for two people or even the same person at a different time in his or her life. It all depends on our current perspective.

slaying my green eyed monster

I used to get ridiculously,  unequivocally jealous of other people. I coveted what they had, whether it was more blog followers, a book deal, money when I was broke, a relationship when I was single, vacations, etc. My jealousy held no bounds. I would think horrible things, like why can’t I have that? or I deserve that; why is it theirs, not mine?

My green-eyed monster was uuuuuuugly. I hated her, but I didn’t know how to slay her. I knew I was in the wrong, but for the life of me couldn’t make it stop.

And then one day, it hit me over the head like a pile of rocks. It was recent, and I’m ashamed to admit how recent. But it was something the unbelievably beautiful Samara said. At the wrong time, her words may have gone completely over my head, but at the time she said them, I was in a very solid place. I was surrounded by strong, brilliant women who were supporting each other. It was after I began really reading a lot of deep, heartfelt essays that put my own world into a different light. I had a new perspective and didn’t even realize it had happened.

So when Samara said something along the lines of, Why does anyone feel the need to compete with each other? We should be building each other up. There is enough success for all of us.

And oh my God did that resonate through every fiber of my being. It made sense on such a deep and powerful level, that I began to see more clearly the way to remove that green-eyed monster from my soul.

Even further still, the aphorism, “a rising tide lifts all boats,” which is often used in reference to economic changes was mentioned countless times this summer in reference to the writing community I call home. If we support each other, cheer each other on, help each other out, we are a part of the tide. And this can be applied to any aspect of your life.

We can all slay our green-eyed monsters.

Does this mean I never get jealous? Of course not. I’m only human. But I can be jealous without releasing that ugly kraken from within me. Instead, I try really really hard to isolate those twinges of jealousy before they overtake all of me.

When has your perspective changed how you react or respond to a situation? How do you battle jealousy? What inner-demons are you fighting with?

This piece was originally published on Sisterwives Speak.

Hey! Did you know you can buy my book on Amazon? 37 women wrote about the struggle for perfection, and I'm one of 'em. Go check it out!

Planning a Wedding is Hard Work

It’s been a little over two months since Brian and I got engaged.  We (and by we, let’s be honest here, I mostly mean me) are deep in the throws of the planning.

Since Brian has been telling me we would get married this year since last January  (why yes, he did wait until December to pop the question), I knew we didn’t have a lot of time to waste. So we jumped right in.

It’s gone a little something like this:

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Read wedding planning book. I did this last summer, before Brian proposed, when my wedding guru friend Alessandra hooked me up with her amazingly helpful and real book.


Leave book on bedside table, let boyfriend wake up next to you reading book, and make notes in the margins when you know he’s looking.

*Results may vary, engagement not guaranteed by buying or reading this book.

Get engaged. Sometimes,  this will happen before the wedding book reading. You do you, Boo.

Drink champagne.

Ask mom to stop blabbing to the world before you get a chance to tell some of your besties before they hear about it on Facebook.

Tell the Internet.

Drink champagne.

Start receiving wedding advice from anyone and everyone. Choose wisely which advice you listen to and which advice goes in one ear and out the other. So far the best advice has come from my boss: “Don’t let the details stress you out. Don’t get caught up in Pinterest.”

The worst advice comes from everyone else (and let’s be honest here,  I’ve offered this up to a lot of people, myself, and even try to convince Brian it’s true, but it’s likely a do as I say, not as I do situation): “Don’t worry about what other people think. It’s your wedding. You’re paying for it. Do what you want.” Yeah. Right. You know how many people have already told me how irritating they find a wedding without cake? Fucking Pavlovian responses. Wedding bells = cake. Even when the bride and groom don’t particularly love cake.

Drink champagne.

Re-read wedding planning book. Alessandra encourages a do what you want mentality but she also understands that it’s not always possible and to focus more on the not stressing out part. She’s realistic about that shit.

Make future husband read the groom chapter of wedding book.

Binge watch Gilmore Girls.

Drink champagne.

Start making actual decisions.

Like the where: I started emailing venues for pricing, capacity, and other details. I plugged it all into a fancy spreadsheet I created and mathed the shit out of the prices. I narrowed it down to three places, found out availability for the general season we wanted, visited the venues and scoped out details, and ultimately made our decision.

And the photographer: This was a factor in our location as well. The photographer we (I) wanted was available on certain dates, which narrowed our venue options further.

And the DJ: We were so close to skipping this and just making a playlist, but decided the cost was worth it for someone who could actually read the crowd and manage the tunes to keep the kind of atmosphere we want.

Drink champagne.

And now here we are. Exactly 7 months from our wedding. We’re not completely on track with the timetable mapped out in the book, but it’s more of a guide than a rulebook, which is what we needed. With a lot more to do, I’m still not stressed. I’m excited. And in the grand scheme of all the things, the ONLY thing that matters at the end of the day? Is that Brian and I are pledging to spend the rest of our lives together.

So, fine. Let them eat cake.

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What was it like when you planned your wedding? If you’re not married yet, what are you most excited/worried about? What was the best wedding you’ve been to like? The worst?

Hey! Did you know you can buy my book on Amazon? 37 women wrote about the struggle for perfection, and I'm one of 'em. Go check it out!

Your Prayers Are Answered, My Child

Did you know people send prayers out into the universe via The Google?

I did.

Do you know how I knew that?

Because their prayers come to me.

I’ve decided to take it upon myself to send those prayers up to the big guy. We have a history, you know. I would pray for things. He would give them to me. And it would take three months for me to figure it the fuck out. Like my first period.

And Brian.

So in honor of life’s little miracles, I thought I’d share some anonymous prayers I’ve recieved–in my search terms–so you, too can help these people out.
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Like this guy. He just needs a little help.

one day god will answer my prayers

I’ll send him a message for you.

She Works Hard for the Money

Someone help this lady help her friend. She just works too damn hard.

good please pray this woman gets of my friends back she works way toi hard for this shit

There was a little spelling mishap, so she tried again.

good please pray this woman gets of my friends back she works way too hard for this shit

I think she still missed one. No big deal. You guys, will help her, right?

They Really Need Their Period

Whether they don’t want an unplanned pregnancy or they’re dying to join their friends in riding the cotton pony — damn,  that’s my new favorite phrase — help these ladies out and say a little prayer for them.

prayer to get your period

prayer to get my period

thoughts & prayers to make my period come

Oh thank God. She got her period!

after i prayed i found out i was in my period so was my prayer accepted

This girl is still waiting.

i still pray for my first periods but i dont have them

Sweetheart,  you can always pray. I promise.

when should i assume i can’t pray when i’m on my period

This one is blaming her period on not praying…

missed prayer and got period

Well, when you’re looking for period prayers, you know where to go.

His Girlfriend Needs Your Prayers

He knows he got a good one. Can we pray that she sticks around?

pray for your girlfriend that you have now

The Mother’s Curse

Ah, the mother’s curse. My grandma wished it upon my mom, and my mom wished it upon me. Can you even handle another Chrissy is this world? Let’s pray for all the mothers who end up with daughters headstrong and brave, just like them.

remember what you were like and pray for your children that’s just like you

In the End it’s all What You Believe

just believe your prayers are answered

That’s right, my friends,  just believe. And if you’re a believer,  go ahead and help my search term visitors with their praying.

Do you ever search The All-Knowing Google for answers to your prayers?

Hey! Did you know you can buy my book on Amazon? 37 women wrote about the struggle for perfection, and I'm one of 'em. Go check it out!

I Just. Can’t. Stop.

This year has been…interesting thus far to say the least. In addition to the deaths of some of my favorite people…Jareth Bowie. Snape Rickman, I’ve been stricken with a few grievous issues. Only a few weeks in and I’ve had the laryngitis, back maladies, a small addiction to the Twitter, and a serious case of Netflixitis.

What is Netflixitis, you ask? Well, first, I thought to myself, Self, you just made up Netflixitis. Aren’t you clever? 

And then I thought to myself, Self, you should probably Google Netflixitis to see if you’re really the first person to think of such a clever thing. 

And then I Googled Netflixitis and discovered that it is, in fact, a “real” thing. Of course, it is pretty much exactly what you expect it to be. It’s an affliction of the mind and body in which you physically cannot say no to Netflix. No matter how many times it asks you if you’re “still watching Gilmore Girls?” No matter how many episodes you can get through on a Saturday that you have zero plans (and for the record, Netflix will ask you at least 3 times if you’re still watching). No matter how many Christmas trees are still up in your big, fancy, unkempt house. No matter how many things you haven’t planned for the wedding that’s nearing on 8 months away.

I hate it when Netflix asks, Are you still watching Gilmore Girls?

I see that judgy way you popped on screen, Netflix.

Netflixitis is a healing disease. Especially when it includes snacks. And a lot of drugs for your back pain. And just the right positioning on the couch. It may take weeks of recovery. And for that, we’re thankful that all seven seasons of Gilmore Girls are available on Netflix. And by “we,” I mostly mean me, although Brian has partaken of the Gilmore Girls for several hour spans of time.

Netflixitis is a disease that also doubles as an idea machine. When I told Katie I was starting on the Gilmorathon last month, she warned me of several weddings, but I had no idea that each season would be ripe with marriages and weddings and big fancypants parties. Did you know that there are AT LEAST seven weddings on Gilmore Girls? I’m only halfway through Season 5, and I can count SEVEN freakin’ weddings. And all the ideas. Oh man. I mean, I want midgets dressed like angels dancing under papier-mâché mushrooms, don’t you?

I’m totally kidding.

Sort of.

Netflixitis is a beautiful thing. Netflix is my beautiful thing.

Even if I do have this minor condition.

These 7 Signs Will Tell You If You Have Netflixitis.

7 Signs you may have a case of Netflixitis

You continue to binge watch episodes of a TV show that you’ve never seen before, despite the dishes that haven’t been washed in a week…just like your hair.

You’re now binge watching episodes of a TV show you’ve seen at least twice all the way through.

You’ve watched three bad horror movies, and are nuking the popcorn for round four.

You’re imagining your life as Liz Lemon, Lorelai Gilmore, and Buffy Summers at the same time. You’re smart, quirky and a total bad ass. You rock. Netflixitis makes you awesome.

You wake up from a dream in which you’re a teenager and boys are sneaking into your window (seriously, Rory lives on the first floor of her dorm and people can just get into her room? I lived on the first floor and we were lucky the windows even opened).

You come home from work, grab a sammy, and plop down in front of the TV for night of the Gilmore Girls, only to be highly disappointed when you realize you left your beverage in the kitchen.

You haven’t left the couch in three days and your boyfriend is sending out SOS signals from your bed.

Sometimes, my boyfriend sends SOS signals from my bed

Have you ever suffered from Netflixitis? What is your favorite thing to binge watch right now? Are you a Gilmore Girls addict? 

Netflix Stream Team

As a member of the Stream Team, Netflix sponsors these fun little posts which give me the ability to watch 24/7 streaming TV and write about it. I had a Netflix account long before I was a Stream Teamer, and all opinions expressed are entirely my own. 

Hey! Did you know you can buy my book on Amazon? 37 women wrote about the struggle for perfection, and I'm one of 'em. Go check it out!

Eat Your Heart Out, Bill Murray

If Groundhog Day were a never-ending loop, I’d make damn sure I learned a few things before I tried to drive Punxatawny Phil and myself off a cliff or stepped in front of a truck. In fact, it’s kind of fun to imagine it all. Not the cliff driving or truck stepping…the learning, people. Like when Billy Boy (well, Phil in the movie) learned how to sculpt ice. So, I thought I’d make a fun little list of the top seven silly little things I’d learn to do on my endless Groundhog Day.

French-braid my own hair
I have yet to master this ridiculously “easy” task. I know there are probably dozens of you who can just do this. Me? I braid pigtails and tie them together in the back to make it look like I know what I’m doing.

Bake cupcakes
Remind me to tell you about fuck-up dip, sometime…fuck-up dip is what I make when I inevitably burn the bottoms of the cupcakes.

Make a turducken
Fine, Brian. I’ll make a fuckin’ turkducken. He’s only been begging for one for the last 4 years, 10 months and 20 days…ish. I figure with a few years of trying, I can make this sucker happen.

Play the saxophone

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When I was a kid, I wanted to play the sax like Lisa Simpson SO BAD, but my mom wouldn’t let me join the school band. She claims it’s because she thought I would quit after trying it and buying a saxophone,  but after her recent admittance that I loved everything I tried when I was a kid  (ballet, tap, gymnastics, cheerleading, choir), and that shit was expensive,  I realize she was just afraid I’d become a band nerd. (Side note: I hated boys’ baseball. I used to lie to my friends and say I had a different cheer team practice when I went to baseball.) To be fair, I ended up being a band groupie,  hanging out with the drumline and dating a tuba player, so there was that.

Code websites
This has long been on my bucket list, but I just keep pushing it off. I would love to just spend dozens of my repeating days learning how to speak code. At least enough to let me fuck around with my own website, and preferably enough to allow me to make money fucking around with other people’s websites.

Yoga arm balances
I am dying to figure out this one little yoga trick that everyone claims is so so easy, but I’m terrified of even trying. This shit looks scary and hard. But with endless timeon my hand, I could totally handle it.

Sew clothes

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I love making my own Halloween costumes, but I’m pretty much stuck with anything I can hot glue or staple. This still bodes pretty well for me, but it would be fucking awesome if I could sew my own dresses and shit. I mean with a sewing machine and everything. How awesome would that be?

It’s been said that Bill Murray spent 33 years and 350 days looping Groundhog Day.

What would you do with all that time?

Hey! Did you know you can buy my book on Amazon? 37 women wrote about the struggle for perfection, and I'm one of 'em. Go check it out!