28.5 and Dating

In January I wrote about how shitty dating was in this era and how dating apps and “Netflix and Chill” were the norm. I brooded on about how I wanted genuine interactions and someone to really try for me. So here’s my update…

 

It’s all still shit.

 

But…

I kind of like it this way, so hear me out:

When I made the decision to not join any dating sites and not really allow for ever so many pointless dates, one really great thing happened… I started dating new guys less and started getting more “me” things accomplished! Since January, I have lost almost 12lbs and am in the best shape of my life, I’ve built a privacy fence for my house with my dad, I’ve enhanced my career, I’ve traveled, and I’ve spent a lot more quality time with my friends and family. All in all, I am much happier.

I have met a guy or two, and quickly realized, before I went on the date, that I would be wasting my time. I have met one who ultimately pushed me to be more productive in my own life. But, more importantly, I have met the unapologetically honest version of myself that I have been missing for a few years. I don’t waste nearly as much energy keeping unproductive relationships breathing, I suffocate them. I don’t waste my time with one way streets, I speed down the highway of my life, hair blowing in the breeze of no bullshit.

Those are some sadistic and corny statements for you. You’re welcome.

The only con that I could possibly find in all of this ME time and happiness, is the small dark thought that I might get used to doing this on my own. But then the bright light of ‘no fucks’ shines through and I move on.

Cheers to the next 6 months! Stay tuned 🙂

 

 

I Should Be Engaged

Original Post by Duly Noted.
January 8, 2016 by Corinne Rogero

I want to be engaged this year. As of yesterday I’ve been on this earth for more than twenty-three years, and I think it’s about time for me to be engaged.

I’ve been asking people on my Home Team what one word they want to hold true for 2016, and when the question was finally reciprocated by my friend Sanford, I couldn’t come up with anything. I hadn’t found one that quite fit just yet.

I would say seemingly meaningful words aloud to see if their meanings would hold any significance for what I want this next year to be.

I rustled up words like depth or rest or value and announced them to myself in the car or in the shower or on my walk to work. Nothing was clicking.

Until I drove to Joshua Tree yesterday morning, and that’s when a word so unexpected was whispered into the silence around me: engaged.

And I know it’s the right word for this next year because it scares me to say it aloud. I knew as soon as I heard it that it wasn’t my idea- I’d never ask for something so radical.

But as I sit in this snow-covered coffee shop on the side of Bear Mountain, that word keeps repeating itself in my mind to the point that I can feel it making itself at home and warming everything in me like the flat white in my coffee mug.

So for my twenty-fourth year of life I want to be engaged, but it’s probably not what you think.

I’m as single as a slice of American cheese right now, which is perfect for me and I prefer it that way.

But when I say I want to be engaged, I don’t mean I’m looking for a fiance.

I mean I want to be engaged in the sense that I’m mindful of the people and surroundings and culture and the spiritual warfare around me.

I want to establish meaningful connections with the person on the other side of my coffee mug or in the booth across from me at dinner or in the passenger seat of my car.

I want to lean in and connect with the stories being told. I want to actively console the sorrows being shared. I don’t want to go through conversations absentmindedly anymore.

Because after two decades of being distracted by tomorrow and by my phone and by what’s happening in my peripheral, it’s about time I was engaged fully in these moments.

I just finished A Hobbit A Wardrobe and A Great War by Joseph Loconte. It’s a book about J.R.R. Tolkien’s friendship with C.S. Lewis and how the events of WWI shaped their views on life, transformed their writing, and grew them together as best friends.

I came across a quote in one of the last chapters from Lewis about what true friendship is and he says,

You will not find the warrior, the poet, the philosopher or the Christian by staring into his eyes as if he were your mistress: better to fight beside him, read with him, argue with him, pray with him.

I don’t think we’ll ever be fully engaged in the lives of others by staring at them through Instagram or Snapchat or by stalking their musical tastes on Spotify (all of which I’m fully guilty).

I think engagement happens when we turn off our phones and laptops and TVs and fight beside the people we love and want to know more.

It happens when we sit together in the silence of reading or doing a puzzle together or in the gentle murmur of prayer for one another.

I want to be engaged with this planet in my next year of life. I’ve already explored some of the most incredible landscapes in the past few months of living in California, but it’s only one state and I have the world at my fingertips.

So do you.

But if we never take the time to stick up for ourselves, to ask our employers for time away to rest and leave our cubicles and occupy our bodies and minds with the waterfalls and mountains and deserts and cobblestone streets of this planet, are we really living?

I want to engage in other cultures and environments and languages in this next year. I want to encounter more new places and faces than sticking to the social norms would allow.

More than that, I want to engage in the invisible war that’s taking place over the souls of the people around me.

I want to be locked and loaded with an arsenal of grace and truth and boldness to bring the good news of hope into the lives that intersect mine.

I want to be fully aware of God’s presence in every moment and not as much like Jacob who woke from his sleep and said, “Surely the Lord is in this place and I didn’t know it!”

John 1:10-11 says, “[Jesus] was in the world, and the world was made through him, yet the world did not know him. He came to his own, and his own people did not receive him.”

I don’t want to be one of His own who is too busy or distracted or preoccupied to recognize his presence in every moment.

I heard a pastor once say, “The holiest moment in life is the one happening right now,” and I think he’s absolutely correct.

Because the enemy has quietly and viciously crept into this world and distracted us with empty connections and excuses of worrying about tomorrow.

C.S. Lewis portrays this in The Screwtape Letters. The antagonist Screwtape maliciously states,

The present is the point at which time touches eternity…It is far better to make [humans] live in the Future. Biological necessity makes all their passions point in that direction already, so that thought about the Future inflames hope and fear. Also, it is unknown to them, so that in making them think about it we make them think of unrealities.

If I want to be engaged in the holiest of moments, if I want to live fully aware of the battle taking place for the weary, helpless souls around me, tomorrow can (responsibly) worry about itself.

It’s a new year, I’m another year older, and I want nothing more than to be engaged.

Will you be engaged with me? Will you spend more time being present in the present and interacting with the current landscape and giving the enemy a good dose of his own fear as your heart and mind sync up with these points in time that touch eternity?

I think life looks better engaged, regardless of whether there’s a ring involved or not.

Because we have a God who’s engaged and none of us did anything to deserve his fullness in every moment.

Stop for just a second and hear Him gently whisper,

Wake up to the life around you, my child. Awaken your senses to the people and places and my presence in this life, and I will wrap you up in light.

The Way I Look At Me

I finally caught your eye yesterday… I know you saw me. All black Johnny Cash outfit at the gym. I could feel your stare my entire workout. Every weight I lifted I could see your eyes trailing over every curve of my arm, to my shoulder, along the outline, down the slope of my hip and back again, analyzing. I could sense the judgement in your look, but there was an overall acceptance of progress and drive. You were accepting of the fact that I was there, a female taking up free weight space.

Surprisingly, unlike the recent past, I wasn’t as self conscious as I had been on other gym days. Even though I knew you were laughing at my facial expressions when I struggled to put up the last few reps. I know you noticed the extra weight around my middle, not as prominent as it has been, but there. The shorts I had on made an extra roll I wasn’t particularly fond of. But yea I get it, I don’t have a six pack yet, but stand by, it’s coming! I know you watched as I moved from machine to weights, move to move, struggle to struggle. You never took your eyes off me.

Finally, during the rest on my last set of the hour you spoke.

“You are looking good, I like how far you’ve come. Yea, you have some goals to hit still, but you have got this. You look better to me than you have in a long time.”

“Thank you”, I said to myself, “Thank you for realizing what you have accomplished, what you are capable of and what you know you are about to discover about your abilities. You have a long way to go, but you are finally happy looking in the mirror”.

Sometimes, you need to check yourself out at the gym and remind yourself you only have one body and you should love every muscle, every fat roll, every scar and say “Damn self, you are looking good!”

Give yourself a pep talk today!

 

Forced to Realize That Love Can’t Be Enough

Sometimes we get lost.

Sometimes we put all our hopes and dreams into one person before we learn you should really keep some parts of your heart and soul for yourself. We all struggle with indecision, with insecurity. We’re all fighting the good fight, looking for that spark or connection in a world generally filled with indifference and negativity.  Often, we don’t know what we’re looking for, or how to find it. It’s hard to understand romantic love, if you’ve never truly felt it. It’s often hard to understand the difference between apathy and emotional investment. Separating lust and a true spiritual connection can be equally difficult and time consuming when we’re still trying to sort ourselves out

Sometimes we fall in love and we get it wrong.

We fall in love with the idea of a person, of all the things we glimpse in small, rapid moments, and cling to those flashes with a desperation that can carry us on for years. Believing in and holding on to something that was never really there at all. We’re told love is hard, but the lines of ‘how hard should it be?’ are blurred and often undefined. Is he/she just shy? Are they merely struggling to find themselves? How long should I wait? Should I just let go? There isn’t one, decisive answer to any of these questions. No love is the same and no heartache can be matched. We all experience love in our own, often painful way.

Sometimes we don’t know when to let love go.

We stay because we’re driven by an emotion than can often prove stronger than fear or uncertainty -hope. Because maybe we have built up this idea of what we think love should be and we attach it to someone who seems to fit the ‘rules.’ We throw caution to the wind because that’s what you do, you put all the battered bits of your soul out there for another, often unsuspecting, person to review and judge. We forget that sometimes the things we want from people are not the same as the things we need. We might want praise and adulation, but we often need criticism and brutal reality.

Sometimes we are forced to realize that love can’t be enough.

Maybe the timing is wrong, maybe we’re not ready or open enough, maybe the world it self seems to be between us. Those are the ones that hurt the most. The ones that linger decades later, to be reviewed over a sunset with a steaming mug in hand and a quiet house we’ve built with someone else nestled comfortably behind us. They remain unanswered questions bitterly thrown out into the emptiness of the universe, never to be understood, never to find fruition. We just carry them with us, another piece of our hearts we no longer own.

Sometimes we learn.

We build ourselves through love. Through the euphoria, the quiet comfort, the arguments, the laughter and the pain. We slowly come to terms with who we are and what we need as we grow from, and sometimes through, other people.

Sometimes we get it right.

Occasionally this can happen immediately, right off the bat. For many, it takes years of trial and error, of loneliness and perseverance. But eventually most of us find the perfect balance in ourselves. We find the ever-elusive understanding that love is not a red, heart shaped card once a year, or a grand, lavish ceremony, love is in the small moments. It is in the silence between two people, face-to-face, souls bared and vulnerable, where we find it. The meaning to ourselves, the reflection of all those things we were looking for that we never quite understood until that moment, when our breaths synch and our hearts tremble.

Love is every day. Love is a battle, a quest, a lifetime endeavor. Love is finding ourselves and then, miraculously finding someone else there waiting.

Sometimes I want to remember all the times I got it wrong.

Reminisce about the good times, and recall the bad. I want to appreciate the lessons learned, the truths discovered and the bridges built and burned.

Sometimes I want to remember all the times I got it wrong so I can understand when I finally got it right.

 

 

 

I really connected with this article today, it is very relevant in my current situation. I mean no copyright or to claim this work, simply wanted others to maybe feel the same peace that reading this brought me

Original work here:

http://thoughtcatalog.com/brianne-mcdonald/

Sometimes, We Fall In Love And We Get It Wrong

Cancer and Batman Underwear

I will be stripping to my Batman skivvies and running around in the frigid temps this February, all in an effort to raise funds so kids like Jack Burke can grow up happy and healthy. Jack is the kind of kid that immediately becomes your best friend – such a character, a great big brother and just happy as can be.

…but Jack’s journey is a tough one. He was diagnosed with NF (neurofibromatosis) at two-years-old and, along with other tumors, he has a plexiform neurofibroma (a complex tumor) just behind his left eye.

And now, just this September, they discovered a new tumor on his brain stem that needs immediate intervention. So, as you are reading this, he will have started 15 months of chemotherapy. An 8-year-old going through chemo!

NO CHILD SHOULD HAVE TO GO THROUGH THIS, so I am running in my Batman themed undies in the freezing cold because I will do whatever it takes, no matter how ridiculous, to help find a cure for NF!

Your donation, whether it be $5 or $500, will provide critical funding to the Children’s Tumor Foundation and allow for clinical trials, treatments and ultimately the cure we desperately need.

I sincerely thank you, Jack thanks you, and the millions of families who will benefit from this effort thank you.

100% of donations go directly to the Children’s Tumor Foundation.

DONATE HERE: http://hopecur.com/amandahouse

CTF is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization rated 4-stars by Charity Navigator and priding itself on spending 82.4% of its revenue on program expenses and less than 8% on administrative costs.

6 Reasons You Should Sleep Naked

Welp, now I know why I choose to do this!! Love sleeping naked! Thanks Cosmo for justifying it for me!

Sleeping in the nude is good for you!

A recent study showed that less than 10 percent of Americans sleep in the buff. Whaa? Not only is it dead sexy, experts swear naked sleep is actually good for you. We asked them to spill on the top reasons you should ditch those pajamas for good.

By Natasha Burton

1. You’ll Air Out Your Hoo-Ha
Jennifer Landa, MD, author of The Sex Drive Solution for Women, says that sleeping naked can be healthier for your private parts. While it’s totally normal to have yeast and bacteria down there, the warm environment can sometimes cause an overgrowth. One way to prevent infections is to “air it out” and go commando.

2. You’ll Sleep Better
While you might like being cozy and warm at night, it’s actually important to have a cooler environment when you sleep, says Lisa Shives, MD, who sits on the National Sleep Foundation’s board of directors. “Your body temp progressively declines as you sleep, which is a natural tendency of the body, so being too warm with heavy PJs and blankets can disrupt that.” Sleeping naked, she says, can help your body stay cool.

3. You’ll Look Hotter
According to naturopath Natasha Turner, best-selling author of The Hormone Diet, being too warm at night disrupts the release of melatonin and growth hormone-your main anti-aging hormones-into your body. “As your body temperature drops, growth hormone is released and works its regenerative magic,” she says. And that keeps your skin and hair looking awesome.

4. You’ll Lose Belly Fat
Sleeping naked helps you sleep more soundly, which will allow your levels of the stress hormone cortisol to decrease as you rest, keeping your energy and hunger levels in check, Turner says. When your sleep is disrupted, your cortisol will be too high when your alarm goes off, making you more likely to wake up hungry for comfort foods-and more likely to overeat them.

5. You’ll Feel More Confident
Sleeping naked feels great, Landa says. “We can tune in to sensations like the feeling of the sheets and the coolness of the air, which can be very sexy” she says. “And feeling sexy increases confidence.”

6. You’ll Have Better Sex
Landa says that sleeping naked is great for your relationship because laying skin to skin will increase feel-good chemicals like the cuddle hormone oxytocin. “Sleeping naked encourages sexier relationships,” she says. You’ll feel more relaxed and be more in the mood for intimacy.

Read more at Cosmopolitan.com!

Post found here: http://shine.yahoo.com/healthy-living/6-reasons-sleep-naked-221500649.html

Husband Took Photos Of His Wife: Captured Love And Loss Beautifully

A Husband Took These Photos Of His Wife And Captured Love And Loss Beautifully.

This is moving and heartbreaking… I don’t know what it’s like to lose a lover to cancer, but I did lose my mother. Several of these photos remind me of exactly what I saw and to a point experienced myself as a daughter.

This is a haunting reminder to love life, love everyone in your life and never waste a moment telling people just how much you love them.

This Is Life

Tragedy:

A very bad event that causes great sadness and often involves someone’s death.

A very sad, unfortunate, or upsetting situation : something that causes strong feelings of sadness or regret.

 

In a very short amount of time I have experienced two separate events that I could categorize as a tragedy. Watching someone who still holds your heart walk down the aisle to marry another woman I would categorize as a very sad, unfortunate, or upsetting situation. Finding out that your closest friend at work took their own life, I would categorize as a very bad event that causes great sadness.

Do you let someones marriage impale you to the point of numb? Or do you realize you may have been looking through a very fine hole of life and there is SO much more and someone so much more just waiting for you to finally break away.  Yea, I think it is the latter.

When it comes to death/suicide… do you dwell and ponder all of life? Do you feel guilty because you didn’t do more for someone who didn’t reach out for help? Do you spin around in your own head trying to decipher if there were signs or something you missed? Or do you remember the beautiful laughter and goofy, ridiculous amount of voice impersonations that brightened everyday? The jokes and faces and fun loving nature of a guy who brought so much happiness to your friendship. I think its the latter. I think I need to remember and reminisce on the man who inspired ridiculous conversations, verbally abused my self conscious ideals about myself and dragged me to an adult arcade to help me move on from a hard break up. I need to keep my thoughts on the man who texted me for hours to make sure I made my drive up north safely. The one who compared our relationships with our dogs and tried to pretend his dog was better than mine haha. I laugh now just remembering how asinine it sounded to fight over who had more love from their furry friend.

Both scenarios have really made me stop and think. This is life. This is the tumultuous bullshit that drones throughout our days defining our next moves and the way we grow and react and learn. It is also these scenarios that remind me that life is too short and too precious to not do what you want with it. Are you loving with an intensity and ferocity that would make all others jealous? Why not! Are you living to the fullest not letting financial restraints hold you back from experiencing unfulfilled desires? WHY NOT!

Take it from someone who has lost… Losing is not the end, it’s only the beginning to something you are not yet in tune too.

“God’s plan is greater than mine” REPEAT REPEAT REPEAT!