Monday, December 31, 2012

Here’s to the new year…

I don’t have any super plans tonight – just spending the evening with a friend and her son – so I wish you a happy New Year with a picture from last year’s photo session – Lucy was quite enthused. I hope that you get to celebrate the coming year with those that you love the most.

HAPPY NEW YEAR!
May 2013 be filled with great adventures!

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Sunday, December 30, 2012

Lonely No More

So last night I was supposed to go out to the bars with my friend but… my body had a different plan for me and decided to give me some kind of stomach bug. Or food poisoning. Either way, I will never eat burritos ever again. So instead of enjoying the last weekend of 2012 with a pint of beer and some handsome tourist boys, I stayed home and laid in bed with Saltines, a couple of liters of water, and a lot of oranges. And Lucy.

For a brief moment in time, I thought, “Wow, it sure does suck that I don’t have anyone to come take care of me. No one to call (except my mom, who dropped crackers down to me from the second story balcony) who will come rub my back and give me chicken soup.”

But then I felt that warmth radiating from my cat where she lay curled up in the curve of my body and I suddenly didn’t feel so lonely anymore. She might not settle my stomach but she sure is receptive to my needs. Every time that I got out of bed to run to the bathroom (and that was a lot of times) she came with me, sometimes she even took the lead and I had to shout expletives at her because she was going so damn slow! And when I crawled back into bed, she did, too and most times, she came right up next to me and curled up at my side. Loneliness took a back seat real quick. My sweet cat brought me comfort in my time of need. That’s all I could ask for right then. And maybe some Pepto Bismol.

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Saturday, December 29, 2012

Promises

I’m pretty sure that New Years resolutions are impossible to keep and stupid to start with. I’ve been “making” them all my life and have kept very little of them. Every year I have the same one: lose weight, eat better, get in shape. Eh. Who doesn’t make that one for themselves every January? Last year, however, I made the most progress on that resolution than I ever had before. I took care of my body for more than four months. I exercised daily, took better care of my body by eating healthier and managing my portions. I trained for a half marathon and completed 13.1 miles on race day! I was doing really well until I decided my heart was stronger too and I was ready to let men into my life. Biiiiig mistake! Even though I was feeling better about my body and starting to love myself more, I wasn’t ready to let someone else try to do that. My heart was not strong enough and it could not handle all of the idiotic things that they did, said, and/or didn’t do or say.  As a result, I spiraled out of control, lost my routine, stopped exercising as much, ate my feelings, and now, in December, I am 20 pounds heavier than I was when I joined that damn dating site in May.

But what this taught me is that I can do it! I can take control of my health and I can make myself stronger – mind, body, and soul! So, for 2013, I’m starting over… again. I’m so tired of treating my body like a garbage can. I eat senselessly and with reckless abandon! I can’t jog anymore because I’m so fat it makes my feet and my knees hurt. In the spring I could jog 10 minutes straight, no problem. Now I can’t even jog 45 seconds without it hurting. Hell, I can’t even get out of bed in the morning without my feet hurting. They’re carrying waaay too much weight. I’m tired of stuffing my face with fast food and then regretting it for hours afterwards as my intestines do somersaults and cramp up and I have to give up control of my day to worry about whether or not I will need to make a quick escape to a toilet. I’m also tired of feeling like I’m going to give birth to a food baby after most of my meals. Ew. And recently I’ve been having problems with my esophagus. And my blood pressure has been up! And these are just the health issues. I don’t even want to go into the whole thing about my clothes not fitting me and hurting me when I wear them.

I have a million reasons why I should be better to my body and HELLO. I only get one body to live in. I better start treating it right. Lord help me, this year will be the year. And instead of a resolution, I will make a promise to myself.

This year I will treat my body well. I promise to exercise and eat well and love myself for everything that I am and everything that I can be.

That is my promise. I could make a resolution like, “I am going to lose 80 pounds!” or “I will move to Vancouver in June,” or “I will pay off one or both of my remaining credit cards.” They’re so easy to say but if I don’t fulfill them, all I have left are empty words. But a promise? A promise is so much better. Making a promise to myself is stronger because I know that if I break that promise I will be unhappy. I will be overweight, I will be in pain, and I will be sad. And I don’t want to be sad.

I promise to take care of myself in 2013. That is a promise I can’t afford to break.

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Looking Forward

Christmas is officially over! Which is a relief because I’ve come to dread the holidays. There’s something about being alone on Christmas that makes it excruciating. However, I did enjoy the festivities with my sister-cousin and her boys. They live a few hours south and so I drove down to spend a week with them. Christmas is always more fun when you can buy presents for kids but next year I’m looking forward to a quiet Christmas without the chaos of four growing boys! Hopefully next Christmas I will be settled in Vancouver and can begin my own Christmas traditions and have my own tree (cat-willing!).

Only five more months until I leave (give or take a few weeks) and I’m experiencing emotional flip-flops as I try to decided if I’m ready or not. Emotionally I am ready but it’s the financial and professional part that I am worried about. I continually doubt myself and my ability to find a good job, budget my money, and stay on track. I just have to believe in myself because at this point I’m the only person standing in my way! If all goes as planned, I will be moved and living in Vancouver by mid-June. I can do it!

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

The Countdown, Cat Lady Christmas Cards, and a Funny Video

Only six months left until I move to Vancouver. I’m pretty much living my life here in California knowing that it has an expiration date. It’s probably not the best way to go about it but… I’m over it. Get me out of here! I recently bought a plane ticket to visit Vancouver for a week in March which will be the week of reckoning, I think. I will apply for jobs before I go and hope to get some interviews while I’m there. I think it will be the most telling forecast about what is to come. And that is only three months away! It’s going to go by so fast. Can’t wait!

In other news, it’s almost the holidays and they can’t come soon enough! I need two weeks off from work and school and life. I just want to go pig out on Christmas cookies, drink heavily on New Year’s Eve, and watch a lot of Hulu Plus. And snuggle Lucy. I notice that she starts to begrudge me on the week days while I engage in my work-gym-school-neglect-the-cat routine. On the weekends she can’t get enough of me, meowing outside the door every half an hour but not really needing or wanting anything. I left her home alone for five days over Thanksgiving break and we were both pretty happy to see each other again when I came back. She didn’t hold a grudge at all, although she never does. Over Christmas I will be leaving her for even longer but I did it last year, I think I can handle it again this year. Cat lady for the win!

No, seriously… I really am the winner. I just sent out my Christmas cards yesterday and they went out into the world with a personalized address label on the envelopes – a picture of Lucy wrapped up in Christmas lights. And inside the cards… a picture of Lucy and I that I distributed to all of my friends and loved ones. At first I was writing, “Merry Christmas from your favorite cat lady!” and then I realized I wasn’t doing myself any favors and decided to write, “Merry Christmas from my family to yours!” on the rest of them. No wonder I am still single. Haha.

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Obviously I am not ashamed to be thought of us the cat lady amongst pretty much everyone and anyone that I know. I don’t really care, to be honest. My life right now is pretty lonely and Lucy is my company and I love her very much for all of the light that she’s put into my life over the last year and a half. I like to think I’m a single mom and I’ve got a great kid and thus, I’m entitled to super bragging right. Only in my situation, society likes to label my bragging as the obsessive and weird behavior of an old spinster. Whatever! Being in a relationship with my cat is a whole lot simpler and far less dramatic than any other relationship I’ve ever had. Makes sense to me!

On that note, watch this video because it’s hilarious. What would you do if your friends acted like your pets? Since I live in a house with both a dog and a cat, I can certainly relate to this video and can attest to its accuracy. However, I would like to point out that Lucy does not act like this. She is friendly and sweet and redefines what it means to be a cat. But she does walk over the middle of whatever I’m doing – only when it’s something that’s really important – and she does make eye contact with me and then knock things off of shelves and tables to prove some kind of cat point. But she’s never hacked up a hairball or thrown up on anything and as far as I know, she’s never flipped off any of my friends either.

Saturday, December 1, 2012

The Cat Lady’s Song about Cats

I want this man. I want him right now.

Happy Returns

I’m back! And I’m more quarter-life cat lady than ever before. Well… that’s not entirely true. I will always be a cat lady so I guess I’m more quarter-life now that I’m 26 and actively searching for a 20-something adventure. Since moving back to California from Germany a year and a half ago, I’ve been through a series of upsets that have left me feeling out of place, emotionally drained, and overweight. I’ve gained 40 pounds since my return! I’ve experienced depression, disappointment, heart break, self-deprecation, and listlessness. I wasn’t exactly stoked to blog about my life because I wasn’t happy about it. So I didn’t. My life became a cyclical process – something good would happen and after a few weeks or a month or two, it would come crashing down at my feet. I would grieve, get back on my feet, and then something good would happen again when I was feeling strong. But I wasn’t strong enough because it kept happening. So I decided to do something about it.

Whether or not my problems will follow me, I’m moving out of California and starting over somewhere new. In June of 2013, two years after my return to America from the greatest adventure of my young life, I will be embarking on another, not-so-glamorous, but certainly well-intended adventure. My best friend growing up recently uprooted her entire life and moved to Vancouver, Washington on a whim. She has family there but didn’t move there for love or a career or for school. She did it because it seemed like the right thing to do at the time. It was an adventure and she needed one. Much like myself.

I’ve decided to follow her. In six months time I am packing up my life (at least the most important parts and that which can fit inside my car) and my cat and we’re moving to Washington state. California is no longer an option for me. There aren’t any jobs where I currently live, there aren’t any metropolitan cities that I want to move to, and it’s way too expensive for me to live on my own. In Washington, and Vancouver especially, the jobs in education are far more plentiful, the cost of living is lower, and rent is super cheap.

At this point, I don’t have anything to lose. Except maybe a lot of money but you can always make more. So, for the next six months I will actively work on tying up the loose ends in California and begin to build onto my new life in Vancouver.

I’ve booked a flight to visit Vancouver over spring break. I’ve put over $2,000 in my savings. I’m actively searching job sites and apartment listings, keeping tabs on what’s available and within my capabilities and requirements.

My life is going to change. Starting now.