Monday, March 11, 2013

Hair color= avalanche

It's rather amazing to me how one decision can trigger something as catastrophic as an avalanche. One decision can set in motion a series of events, and once that series of events has momentum it is hard to stop. That's how I feel about my hair color.
    So I decided to go brunette for the first time since I was in high school. Brunette is actually a lot closer to my real hair color than blonde is and I decided it was time to quit pretending. I guess I've been needing change in my life lately. I felt like someone a little different on the inside so now how about letting everyone see someone a little different on the outside.  I didn't realize how something as simple as changing your hair color can trigger an avalanche. In fact, looking back I realized that my first blog post in over 2 years was the day after I colored my hair. I've been in a dark, unhappy place for months now. Funny how that is, now that my marriage is much more stable that I seem to be the one lost. I don't really know how to explain the change in me, but I'm not joking that it started with my hair. And then came the major recognition: it made me feel like someone different. It made me feel like someone who could find confidence, passion, strength, and yet still be an empathetic person. I don't know why I a hard time balancing all of if, but for some reason when I try to be confident I become snobby instead and that's definitely the person I DON'T want to be. I want to be a confident person who can still reach out to others instead of letting my fears take over and hide me inside of my house. As I think back a little more, I don't really think it started with my hair. I think it started to happen a little while before that but when I went to my amazing Me'chell Thomas to get my hair all did is actually when I think I started  to recognize the change myself. So here's to the future, and I think it's a bright one. I hope for it to be filled with more smiles on my part. More compassion and understanding for people and especially those people who are different from me or might have a different belief system(this one is hardest of all). More confidence in my decision. More strength to be a leader and an example to others. And more acceptance of myself as a great person and a person of strength. I think now that I've begun to realize that I am someone of value that I can take those risks on people and it won't be so scary. It obvious that if you don't believe in yourself it's hard to believe in others too.
    I want to dream big again. I remember when I was young I used to love to sit and play piano and sing while I played. I hated it when anyone would catch me so I would be sneaky and do it while no one was around. Now I wonder to myself why I was so selfish? Why didn't I just sing at the top of my lungs? WHY DIDN'T I TAKE SOME FREAKING RISKS? Sorry to my neighbors who are going to be hearing me sitting at the piano singing a lot, I'll probably be off pitch, but I don't care because it comes from the heart and I LOVE IT! It makes me feel a love, makes me feel passion, and very rarely do I sit at the piano and sing without it bringing me to tears at some point. It's one a the only places I feel like raw emotion is free to flow. I want to be brave, maybe write some songs, make them something that I would be proud of and not worry about what others think. And that's the key: do it for myself and no one else (ok maybe for my fam too). :) Good night. 

Zumba killed my body today

So today I finally had a lightbulb moment, you know, one of those unique times where it finally all becomes clear. Let me start by saying this about my lightbulb moment: I'm not very good at confidence or initiative. That would pretty much sum up my lightbulb moment. For some dumb reason, I think I've been trying to figure out the answer to this since before I was even pregnant with Ella. After having her, times were rough and busy. They are still rough and busy, but at least there is bedtime. Ahhh, beloved bedtime. I digress, anyway my lightbulb moment seem to clarify my trials instantly. It seemed to clarify a couple things for me; number one being the doubts that I have in friendships and that it is time to move on and let go. I don't really feel like anyone in our neighborhood/ward cares even a tiny bit about us. This makes me really sad. I don't think I am half bad, but it seems like people don't think twice about us (we'll go in to detail in next paragraph). The other thing that became much more clear to me was what a difference confidence makes. Even if you are completely faking it!!! So let's clarify both:
     The whole friendship in the neighborhood/ward thing has really been weighing on me for quite some time. I feel dejected and I feel like it's my fault that some people don't want to be friends with me or us. This is actually probably true on some level and some of that I can never recover from, I have to just take it as a loss. None of it was intentional, I just maybe put my foot in my mouth too many times or was too hard on someone instead of caring about them. I have very impatient empathy, I'm working on taking a step back and having more patient empathy. The realization that some of it is past fixing became very clear to me, but it also became very obvious that I care about it WAY too much. It's time for me to let go of those past friends who have decided to move on to greener pastures and time for me to move on to greener pastures too, only they are the ones who are losing out. I also realized the initiative thing: I'm not being the best kind of friends to the ones I actually have nor am I reaching back when someone has reached out to me. Why? SOO much fear of rejection! So much fear of not measuring up, and sometimes, the lack of energy to actually try at the friendship. I could try a lot harder with Janelle, but friendships take hard work and sometimes I am too selfish with my time and energy and friendship seems like a waste of that precious time and energy. That is until I realize that everyone else is off having fun, but I'm in time and energy saving-land instead. 
       Confidence in my profession and how it completely changes what I do. I need to let go of my doubts about me and what I am doing. They follow me around like a plague and stress me out to no end. I don't know what I am like this, it's of course probably a combination of conditioning and genetics. In other words, on some level I have learned the way I have become. When I was younger I was not afraid to be myself and be a little ridiculous. Once you hit junior high that all changes and I can tell that's when I turned a corner. I decided that hiding was much safer than actually standing up and being proud of who I am. It's sad that it's taken me so many years to figure this one out. 33 years old and I still fill like I have to fight with myself everyday to be more confident. I find myself swaying to the easier side of things, taking the easier road and trying not to care when other people pass me up, but I really do. Some of it has been because I have been very busy raising my family. And now maybe I am ready to face the fact that I am just as fabulous as I want to be, and likewise I am just as sloppy as I let myself be. I see a lot of my inhibitions in my little sister and it makes me sad to watch her give into her inhibitions. I want joy and happiness for her too. It's like watching a little part of yourself fail when I see the way she lets life push her down and she doesn't get back up and fight, or maybe she gets back up but she starts fighting the wrong person or the wrong battle. Anyway, digress again.

Sunday, March 3, 2013

Silver Linings is my life. Without the romanticism.

It's funny how really anyone on the internet could stumble upon this and read it, but I cringe at the thought of anyone I actually know every reading it, especially my family. Jackson has snuck a peek, Kyle tried to, but my lightning fast safari-hiding skills beat him to the punch. 
    I love Reagan Serr. Someday when I am old and grey I will probably forget who she is, but for now she is my sanity. She is the one escape from my children and she makes A LOT of money from me on a monthly basis. She's worth every penny I pay her. She lets Kyle and I actually go out and be adults while she puts up with our kids. See we don't have that family support system (at least as far as babysitting goes) like everyone else in Utah does. Our families are to busy with their own trials and struggles in life so we just turn to Reagan. She's great, thanks Reagan. So we went to see Silver Linings Playbook last night. I try to ignore previews and reviews and commercials about movies I really want to see because if the previews give away too much I end up being disappointed. I had heard a lot about this movie but tried hard to forget most of it and successfully I did! It reminded me very quickly though, it was a movie about mental illness. And just as quickly I realized how much this movie scared me, because I saw my son in adult form. Beautiful Bradley Cooper adult form. Ahhh, yes Bradley Cooper is a beautiful man and my Ethan is a beautiful little boy. Thank heavens Ethan is so pretty because he is out of control. It was very scary to see those qualities paralleled on the screen, it brought me to tears several times. It was also very honest about how the community responded to Bradley's character, which was harshly. The neighbors stared and gawked and stayed away. We already experience that, I can't even imagine what it will be like when Ethan is an adult and he's able to put up an adult kind of fight. I can still ALMOST out-muscle him, but not for long. 
   The father role (Robert DeNiro) also remind me of my life. Kyle's a little crazy. Not to the extent of that character and probably in a little bit of a different way. It was hard to watch at times. If the movie would have had an unhappy ending that would have been it for me, I would have lost it. Thankfully it was romantic and happy and we both left happy. I could only dream of a romantically happy ending to our situation, I don't know if it will ever come. Right now we are stuck in the trenches and it isn't easy. I wish people WANTED to be our friends instead of pitying us. No one wants to be pitied. So if you want to see what my life will be like in 30 years just watch that movie. It will give you a glimpse into what it is right now. 

Saturday, March 2, 2013

"Why fit in when you were born to stand out?”

- Dr. Seuss

My favorite quote in the whole wide world. I've never been one who has like to stand out or have all the attention drawn to me. I hate speaking in front of large groups. Maybe my heavenly father knew that it would be my weakness, so he made me find music. He made me find something that I was so passionate about that I was willing to let my fears go. It's weird to think that my passion for music is what led me to working in the fitness industry, but it really is. I had natural rhythm and timing and not only could follow the steps that were taught, but teaching them came naturally too. That evolved into teaching bootcamps and Yoga and Spinning and yada yada, it's still continuing to snowball. Somewhere along the line I happened to notice that I was being forced to be in front of people and conquer my fear of attention. Well played God, well played. I hate standing out, but I need to get used to the idea if I'm going to do anything important in this world.
     The other thing that makes me stand out? My kids. MY KIDS. Noisy, crazy, attention-drawing kids.  And I love them, but wow have I faced some harsh judgement over them. And just when you think you've met all the judgers, you happen to stumble upon more. So even though this quote by Dr. Seuss is something we preach, I tend to think it reality there are only certain realms we practice it in. For example, stand out, but only if it's in some COOL, innovate, radical kind of way. I don't think my kids fall into that category. They fall in the the annoying, "can you get that out of my face" category.  Oh well, it's good for me. It reminds me to have empathy and love for others. It teaches me to stick to my guns and not back down from what I know is true and right. What i know is true and right is that I am not always a perfect parent and sometimes I lose it under all this pressure. Sorry for those of you who have observed that :) it will probably happen again. I'm practicing those temperance, patience, love skills but they are slow in coming. But do you know what I really love? I LOVVVEEEE it when I see someone else's kids being super naughty. YES! Muhahahahhahaha! I love it when people tell me in frustration about the naughty antics of their children and their chagrin at their children's behavior. I LOVE IT!!!! It's like they've joined my club, and now I know that we can be friends. We can be on the same team! My poor sister-in-law Natalee is dealing with a crazy toddler. I love every minute of it, I relish hearing about how he head-butts people and refuses to take any sort of a nap. She's getting the real parent training and I love it! Now the playing field is leveled. She'll excuse my children and their naughty behavior and I will without a doubt do the same for her. I embrace the chance to have a friend who is surrounded by crazy too! I can't wait for anyone to join it so we can laugh and make fun of each other's trials! So we can agree to not take life to seriously and to turn the other cheek at the know-it-all mom's who would be aghast at us and our children. It's an elite club that only those non-hater, parents of crazy children get to be in. I welcome you to it, but only if you qualify for membership. Only requirements: crazy children and the ability to recognize it sucks FOR ALL OF US.  Oh and you have to bring food too, because we all need some food to eat while we are mocking our families. 
     This is what makes me fear moving. The people in my neighborhood and ward have gotten used to my kids (specifically Ethan), but not without a lot of judgement and finger pointing at the start of it all. We've mostly past that stage. When and if we move (which is soon and coming), it will start all over again. It makes me dread the though of going to church with all those staring people. I mean what else does anyone have to do in sacrament meeting except people watch? Ahhh, I cringe. Deep breaths, gird your loins, prepare for the stares. That's I guess what God has really been preparing me for is the stares. It's not necessarily public speaking, but it should be handled with just as much poise. I'll try to find that poise that was never genetically given me and actually use some of it. Maybe I'll start using it before we move. Unfortunately I found some more people that would rather judge me then understand our family.  It's a good trial, a good thing to be processing in your head: how to I still go out in public (church) without bursting into tears or screaming at the staring people? I'll tell you how, I just do. Stick to my guns, stand up and be strong. I'll be sad that I can't be friends with the newbies in the ward. We're just too much for them and that's okay. But I am not going to lay down and let that define me. I'm feisty. Thanks Dad, for that. Thanks for making me feisty just like you. Or was is Mom? ;)