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Thursday, July 28, 2016
Good Morning, World!  I am just filled with gratitude and awe on this beautiful morning.  I'm considering it as Day 5 on my eating plan.  Since my pre-Birthday binge didn't completely derail me, I'm counting it as a slip.  So, today is Day 6 and I feel great!  Including the cake in my eating plan made it completely guilt free.   I will continue to do this for special occasions to avoid derailing.

I'm trying to organize my thoughts about my birthday.  I am having difficulty expressing the events of the day and my feelings towards it.  Ok, I'm going to give it a gander.....................Things didn't go according to plan.  We drove to the dentist to find out the appointment is next week, Pinkberry didn't open until 11:30am and we ran out of time for the library.  Babysitter cancelled for al anon, etc. etc.  I started to feel the disappointment that often creeps into my adult birthdays (despite my ardent desire to expel it).  Expectations are planned resentments. But, how to completely erase them?  Here's what happened.  I did the next best thing, I called on higher power to fill my void, I decided to be happy with myself and take it moment by moment.  I am a woman of mantras these days.  "I can't.  He can.  I think I'll let him."  "There is a voice inside of you that whispers all day long, I know that this is right for me, I know that that is wrong..... etc. etc."  I had to say no to some people (out of my comfort zone) and I had to put me and my family first (out of my comfort zone).  I listened to some sermons on the radio, which seemed to be just for me.

But I did it.  I took advantage of Hubby's offer to watch the kids while I went to AAA to fix our car insurance stuff, drove to the mechanic and got my oil checked, went to Pinkberry (closed).  I did many more things.  Hilights include pool with J, speaking up for myself at Al Anon and with a client, work and going out friends for dessert.  My sister texted me asking how my bday was going while at work and I honestly told her that I'm just doing every day things, but they are things I love.  I love my work, I loved the fact that I tried to set up babysitting for our al anon group, I love doing things with the kids.  I am so incredibly blessed.

And throughout the day, I got messages from friends and family wishing me well.  I was swelling with love.  A good friend read my blog and during my morning period of disappointment, I got notifications of comments on my blog.  This blog, where I spill my deepest secrets and inadequacies.  And comments, acceptance = love.  What a gift!  I rarely speak of my gratitude for friends.  After work, I was yawning as I drove towards the restaurant I had planned to meet my mommy friends.  It's actually the first time I have hung out with them sans kids.  A few days before my bday, I texted about 7 mommy friends that I was turning 30 and going to get myself some dessert.  They were very welcome to join.  Babysitters were hired, plans were made.  Two couldn't come because babies had anxiety, but four friends came.  In mommy circles, this is amazing!  I was hoping one friend would come.  Even as I was driving there, I was wondering who would show (because last minute cancellations are common among playdates).  And I didn't expect anyone to be on time, I expected to sit and wait.  Well, they were on time.  I put on some messy makeup in the car and arrived to find my friend, A, already at the table.  I met L walking in, then C called to say she was lost and 10 minutes later J arrived.  I had gotten a table for six, but was expecting more like 3.  I couldn't believe that we filled it up.  Anyways, they sang Happy Birthday to me 2x, yes two times (and loudly) and there was a candle and I ordered a watermelon cocktail.  And my friends got me cards.  And in the cards, they wrote long messages about our friendship and my positive energy and enthusiasm.  It was beyond expectation.

And I got home and there were texts I hadn't seen and a couple video messages.  I was exploding with joy.  What a wonderful 30th birthday!!

And Hubby barely did anything.  For whatever reason, it was beyond his capability.  I don't know if he felt guilty or overwhelmed or.......... (?)  I asked him mid day, why he hadn't said Happy Birthday and he told me lukewarmly that he had set it to me early in the morning.  I guess, I was sleeping so didn't hear him?  Anyways........... it didn't matter at all and still doesn't.  I feel a little bad for him, not that strongly.  I mostly feel just so absolutely wonderful and excited that despite the fact that my "guy" didn't deliver, I had the best of times.  I am still just so surprised that I have made friends that are good enough friends to be there for me in this way.  I haven't been that involved of a friend the last year, year and a half and I felt very inspired to pass this on to others.

So..... let's move forward to my gratitude list.

1) Grateful for friends
2) Grateful for family
3) Grateful for being plugged into a community
4) Grateful for recovery tools
5) Grateful for health
6) Grateful for libraries
7) Grateful for pretend play and the little voice J makes for Lily.
7) Grateful for this very lovely morning!
 
Quote for the day
A stonecutter may strike a rock ninety-nine times with no apparent effect, not even a crack on the surface. Yet with the hundredth blow, the rock splits in two. It was not the final blow that did the trick, but all that had gone before.
The same is true of Al-Anon recovery. Perhaps I am working on accepting that alcoholism is a disease, or learning to detach, or struggling with self-pity. I may pursue a goal for months without obvious results and become convinced that I am wasting my time. But if I continue going to meetings, sharing about my struggle, taking it one day at a time, and being patient with myself, I may awaken to find that I have changed, seemingly overnight. Suddenly I have the acceptance, detachment, or serenity I've been seeking. The results may have revealed themselves abruptly, but I know that all those months of faith and hard work made the changes possible.

Slogans for today: Let go and let God, One Day at a Time, *be gentle to myself

Today, is one of my more scheduled days and with schedule, I thrive.  Library (for certain), speech therapy and pool.  Off to tidy up and get ready for the day's adventures.  
Wednesday, July 27, 2016
Happy Birthday Me!!  I am so jazzed that it's my Birthday and I'm excited to be 30 too.  Lots of positive emotions for me.  Also a lovely time that I am typing.  I am up early enough that the sky is white/bluish beyond the mountainscape.  Very nice!  This is all thanks to my sweet L, who likes to wake up early.

Sooooo................... last night, I wasn't good to myself.  So many thoughts in my head, wasn't even close to falling asleep.  I ended up compulsively eating and staying up late.  As sad as I am to admit it, cheese is a trigger food.  And apples.  Buying those two together, just is not a wise move.  I found myself wanting to use the same logic that Hubby uses with alcohol, "I wanted to treat myself" or "it is my Birthday."  When, of course, it is not treating yourself, at all.  And through the guilt, didn't even taste that great.  I knew this while I thought it.  To imagine, I used to think only he had the addictions.  Mine may not be as destructive as his, but I have quite a few things I do to avoid "feeling."

Anyways.... today is a new day and a beautiful day!  It is the first Wednesday that J doesn't have gymnastics and I'm going to try not feel guilty about that.  It also promises to be a day filled with adventure and warm weather.  We are likely going to the dentist, library, Pinkberry (for a free bday treat), Al Anon for me, then swim for J.  I invited a few friends to go out for dessert with me after work.  I love dessert and friends.  I'm also ecstatic to be in my 30s.  I think it completely fits.  I don't feel like a 20 year old anymore.

Quote for the Day
Standing with my arms extended and turning in a full circle give me a visual marker of the extent of my responsibility. If it doesn't come into my space, I leave it alone. 

Slogan for the Day: Expectations are planned resentments, Let it begin with me, Do the next best thing

Considering that it's a Birthday and a big one, I will have to struggle against not feeling disappointment in Oscar for not doing anything.  I think I will do pretty well because I have a wonderful day planned.  I will be busy and focusing on me.  I know I don't control him.  I love Birthdays and really am just so grateful to have had this 30 years.

Gratitude List
1) Grateful for 30 incredible years - woo hoo!
2) Grateful for dentists
3) Grateful for health care
4) Grateful for joy and love
5) Grateful for L's little voice and the cuteness she exudes when shaking toys.
Tuesday, July 26, 2016
Day 3 of eating plan.  Woo hoo!  And I dropped a lot of weight, so I'm almost back to where I was pre binge.  I'm curious what my weight will be if I continue on this plan for a long time.  Hubby thinks I'll be back to my weight of early/mid 20s, before my metabolism kicked in.  It's about 5-7lb lighter than before i had kiddos (unless I was crazy dieting).  We will see.  I'm sure.  I will do this.  If it stays where I am today, that's ok too, though.  I like where I am today.

I almost missed my writing today.  It's a couple hours later than I normally blog because well.... life.  Kiddos wanted breakfast, then puzzle, then diaper changes, skype with Grandma and before I know it it's almost time to leave for the library.   I can tell L needs another diaper change, but she doesn't seem to mind and I know how important this is.  Last time I skipped my readings and blog, I had a horrendous day and was not my kind self.

My quote for today is quite long:

I'm learning to identify illusions that make my life unmanageable. For example, I wanted to stop controlling people and situations, but the harder I tried, the more I felt as if I were knocking my head against a wall. Then someone mentioned that I couldn't give up something I didn't have. Perhaps I could try giving up the illusion of control. Once I saw that my attempts to exercise power were based on illusions, it was easier to let go and let God.
Another illusion is that I have a big hole inside and I must fill it with something from outside myself. Compulsively shopping, obsessing about relationships, trying to fix everyone else's problems -- these are some of the ways I've tried to fill this hole. Yet the problem is spiritual emptiness and must be filled from within. It wasn't until I saw through the illusion that I was deficient and needed to look outside myself that I began to heal.
Today's Reminder
Today, if I hear myself thinking that I am not good enough or that I need something outside myself to make me whole. I'll know that I am listening to illusions. Today I can call an Al-Anon friend and come back to reality.
". . . human beings, by changing the inner attitudes of their minds, can change the outer aspects of their lives." William James

Slogans: Let go and let God, One Day at a Time

Gratitude:
1) L is trying to walk and waving hi and bye and trying to roar for bear sounds (so grateful!)
2) Grateful for insurance
3) Grateful for freedom in America
4) Grateful for a healthy world that I can go outside and enjoy
5) Grateful for headache medication that actually works for me!!


Monday, July 25, 2016
Woo hoo, Day 1 again for eating plan!  I'm at 144, so only a couple pounds over where I left off.  I am ok with my weight right now, but compulsive eating is no fun.  You are hiding your emotions in food and it's not healthy physically or emotionally.  Anyways........... hopefully today will be Day 2.

Yesterday was fantastic!  Considering the day before was my worst program day in a long long time........... I'm just so glad that we as a family can take it one day at a time.

Hubby was in cleaning mode.  He was tired and not really connecting, but I was in happy Mama mode and we had a great day.  The girls are always perfect.  They are bundles of joy that make lots of poop, pee, vomit and feel every emotion at 150%.  We get sooo much discovery, laughter and joy in them.  They are always busy.  Busy or sleeping.  It is an honor and a pleasure to raise them.

Anyways............. Hubby and I fooled around physically for the first time in who knows how long.  There was no pressure there at all, which was really nice and I was wearing my onesie pajamas, which are very helpful in keeping things from going too far, haha.  Chastity belt, anyone?  I felt respected and positive physical contact is just so helpful in feeling like a married couple.  Earlier in the day, I had been googling "how to fall in love with your spouse again" and thinking of googling "how to help your spouse fall in love with you again."  Hubby was just not being "himself."  He has changed.  With bipolar disorder and anxiety and well, mental illness, he has moods that he didn't used to have.  I don't know how to relate to him through them.  I am sometimes callous, because they scare me.  He is not my dependable hubby and it's a very different caretaker role then someone who is physically sick......Add on that fact that he was probably a sex addict before all this and has cheated on me with multiple women........and we haven't done the therapy work together (only individually).  Ugh, I'm going on a big tangent.  But, we love each other, we are committed to each other, but I have been concerned for our marriage that we are not doing work to reconnect as husband and wife.  I think it's been about a year and and a quarter since I found out and a year and a quarter since we've had sex.  I got myself a lot of help.  I got myself tested, did multiple groups, did therapy with a CSAT for awhile.  It was all very good and helpful.  But, my marriage is broken and I'd love to restore it.  We don't act "in love" like we used to, or more like neither of us are fully satisfied and that's not an awesome position to be in.

ANYWAYS.... yesterday was a step forward.  It was healthy sexual interaction, good day for eating.  We are completely poor today, but know that's not going to last for too long and it is just a beautiful beautiful day.

J's first swim lesson today.  OT Gym, maybe we will try to get a nature walk in before it gets too hot or maybe I will just stay home and pick up (probably the latter).

Quote for they Day
When we continue to nag and domineer, complain and criticize, we are assuming, in large measure, the responsibility for deferred sobriety and for slips from sobriety.
Al-Anon show us how to change these destructive attitudes. As we abandon the role of accuser, judge and manager, the home climate shows marked improvement. A pleasant, cheerful environment, which we can create, often creates in the alcoholic a desire to get sober.

Slogans: One day at a time, Do the next best thing

Gratitude:
1) Local public pool (it's AMAZING!)
2) Swim lessons we can actually afford
3) A positive attitude
4) Physical health for everyone in my family (Hubby has been running about 5 miles a day, it is inspiring me to get some runs in to)
5) 12 step group recovery groups

Sunday, July 24, 2016
I enjoy listening to the birds while writing.

I missed my journal entry yesterday and it was a mess of a day.  Full blown regression. Goodbye to kind awesome wifey F and eating plan.  Hello to compulsive eater and woman of resentment.

Today, however, is a new day.  My kids don't seem to realize I was a mess and Hubby is incredibly forgiving.  I was just thinking a walk to Starbucks might be nice.  It was so hot yesterday, it might be nice to get an early start.

That being said.  I am very tired.  I know I need water.  I need to take today one day at a time and I need to trust higher power.  And I need to be kind and gentle to myself.

Quote for the day
Realizing that my resentments are not necessary or protective opened the door to change. I began relying on my Higher Power to show me healthier ways to speak for myself in situations where I felt hurt or damaged. I took a deep breath and allowed my Higher Power to dismantle a powerfully self-destructive character defect. I became entirely willing.

Slogan: "I can't.  He can.  I think I'll let him."  One Day at a time.  HALT

Gratitude
1.  J
2.  L
3.  Health
4.  Safe place to live
5.  Bird's call

**My head hurts badly,  good thoughts for me that I have the right attitude towards this. 
I'm so tired.  It's the middle of the night and I woke up with ants all over our bed.  Lovely, right?

Spraying around the perimeter of the house worked pretty well, initially.  But, now they are coming out of the oven (yes! horrifying!), our heater and the connecting parts around our toilet.  I realized I have stopped apologizing for killing them tonight.  They are also coming from somewhere in our bedroom.  I think it's behind our bed, so I have to move that.  I hate using poison in the house, but I did in the bathroom.  It's supposed to be safe for pets and kids once dry, but.... I don't like it.  But, the other stuff doesn't seem to keep them away.

Anyways.............. I'm having trouble going back to sleep and my allergies are bad.  I thought venting it out, might help.  I want to be on my bed, rather than the sofa.  But... well.... ants!  J is tucked away on a safe part of the bed.

I think the next best decision is just to TRY to sleep.  And give it a good go.  Let my body relax and look forward to a fun day tomorrow.

Written early morning of 7/23.  Just posted a bit late.
Friday, July 22, 2016
How is it already 7:15am?   It's Friday.  I have no work, only my sweet family.  How wonderful!

I'm looking forward to getting out of the house.

Plans

8am - try to get J into swim class, work towards getting everyone out to explore nature
8:30am - nature hike & picnic
10:00am - bank, drop off money to mechanics (so grateful to the mechanics)
10:15am - library storytime
12:00pm - pool

Home for lunch and cleaning up.  Maybe craft and then maybe tonight a kids concert at the park or farmer's markets.  At some point, we need to do some grocery shopping too.  We may skip library story time.  Maybe not.

Hubby woke up early this morning and ran 5 miles.  He's now doing plyometrics on the side of our house.  It's great to see him walking by.  SUPER inspiring!

J is in a huge whiny egocentric stage (I'm sure she gets it from me!).  She does beautifully when I ask her to speak to me more kindly, but the whining grates on me.  She is so innocent and sweet and honest.  I love so many things about her, but her inability to regulate, just gets me anxious too.  It's better when we aren't in the house because things are more structured.  Or maybe just when I give her my full attention.  When I am doing my meditations, drinking my tea and writing in my journal, I'm not giving her my 100% attention and that is tough for any almost three year old.

Anyways....... today, should be wonderful.  I am so enjoying these Summer days.  I also need to call the Jiffylube person again and get their insurance information to make a claim.  The district manager I spoke with last night was very rude and I was upset by the conversation until I went to the pool.  I really love going to the pool with those girls.

Anyways................

Quote for Today
Attending Al-Anon meetings is but one part of a balanced recovery journey. 
"After hearing slogans like 'Keep It Simple' and 'First Things First,' I came to realize that I was no help to anyone when I wasn't physically or mentally taking care of myself." Living Today in Alateen, p. 76

Slogans for Today: keep it simple, first things first, one day at a time

I'm going to try to be gentle with myself.

Gratitude List
1.  Hubby's Health
2.  Hubby's new psychologist being FREE (woo hoo!)
3.  Taxes being done.  Tax refund.
4.  L and J's health
5.  The public pool
6.  The fact that hubby is teaching the kids Spanish.
7.  Food
Thursday, July 21, 2016
Good Morning, World!

This morning, I am collapsing into this friendly green sofa as I look out at my beloved mountains.
I am tired, so tired.  My body is recovering from something and my head aches.

I did a good job yesterday drinking lots of water and sticking to my eating plan.  Day 1 on eating plan.  I only hope I can do sixty days before getting off again.  That would feel so good!  I think starting out by eating maximum calories, was a good move.

Hubby was so kind (he has such a good heart) and woke up with L this morning, so I could sleep in.  It makes me laugh that waking up at 6:30am is sleeping in, but it certainly is.  I'm grateful that I married such a sweet man.

---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
oooooooooooooooooooook.  I'm going to jump into the quote for today.  This was posted on one of my facebook recovery groups....

"I want happiness. It occurred to me to do this that I would have to.do things that make me happy, and avoid doing things that make me unhappy."  

Extremely simple.  Common sense.  But, yet... I miss this often.  I think part of my slump is because not having a car prevented me from doing some of the things that make me happy.

What makes me happy?
1) walking at the arboretum
2) swimming at the pool with the kids
3) going to the library
4) 5ks
5) being on top of my finances
6) being on my eating plan
7) journaling
8) having a neat house
9) audio books
10) reading with the kids

There are many more things, but those are most relevant for today.

What makes me unhappy?
1) letting the kids watch shows on the computer

I'm only putting that one.  I've been letting the kids watch shows more frequently, so I can work on my self care.  The problem is that I feel HORRIBLE about it.  I feel like an awful parent and then I believe it has the reverse effect.  I think I can still do self care and find other things to keep them busy.

Having the car back will help me do more of the "happy" things on the list.  Today, we will get out into nature, do gymnastics, pool and maybe a craft.

I'm getting a little break with work because many of my clients are taking vacations in the beginning of August.  The break is nice, but the financial situation is dire.  I did file my taxes last night (a REALLY big deal).  Having to estimate was difficult for me, but it feels really really good to have that done.  A gigantic weight has been lifted.  I have been in a holding pattern for awhile and I want to make sure I give myself credit.  I did something good.

I feel like I could write much more this morning...... but, life beckons.

Gratitude List
1.  Tea
2.  Health
3.  Trenta size at Starbucks
4.  The Arboretum
5.  Our wonderful public swimming pool/splash pad
6.  friends

Slogan: One Day at a Time, Keep it Simple

Self Care: Drink lots of water, be emotionally kind to myself, stay on eating plan at 600 per meal


Wednesday, July 20, 2016
Good Morning, World!

L woke me up at 4:30am (possibly earlier) and I'm a bit cranky still.  That little girl is still awake too, an hour earlier.  One nice thing is that I can hear the birds chirping.  I love to hear their bird calls.  Another nice thing is that the sun isn't up yet, and the sky is white behind the dark mountains.

When I'm cranky, I know I need self care.  I have a friend in mind today.  It is a day that is supposed to be a celebration for her and it doesn't feel that way right now.  I'll be thinking of her throughout the day.

I hate to admit it, but I was intimidated by public transportation yesterday.  I did it.  But, I wasn't excited about it and I was a bit of a sourpuss.  I am sore today from the biking and when I got home, I compulsively ate to de-stress.  I will be gaining all the weight that I lost, if I don't stop soon.  In a way, that's what I'm trying to do.  Very self destructive.

Anyways......I think I need to do public transportation again today, but on the BUS!  J has a Dr.'s appt and I don't want to cancel.  But, 30 minutes on the bus.... sigh....  There and back, too.  Opportunity for learning and growth!  The truth is that I'm tired just thinking about it.

7:15am, drive over to mechanic.  walk home. (maybe bike home).
8:15am, walk to bus
9:00am Dr.'s appt.
10:00am (or earlier) walk to bus
11:00am gymnastics

And then I have an al anon situation.  Al Anon is normally about a 25-30 minute drive.  If I have my car back by then - great!  If not, I don't know how to get there and I'm supposed to babysit.  So, I need to figure that out.  Plus, I REALLY need a meeting.

Today is a new day.  I biked out to Jiffy Lube yesterday and put in a claim.  I did very well and am giving myself props.

I really need to do my back taxes today.  The problem is that I have little to no records and feel like I'm doing them from memory.  I'm worried about that.  But, the banks kept closing my accounts and even Intuit isn't letting me access my information anymore.  My papers are so disorganized.  And for Hubby's, he borrowed money from so many people, it's very difficult to make out how much he made and how much he didn't.  He also has no records.  I know you can estimate, but I'm feeling like I'm doing something illegal by guessing and so keep avoiding filing (which, I guess, is also illegal).  It's also preventing L from getting health insurance. sigh. sigh. sigh.

This is a much less positive post than usual.  I told you that I'm cranky.  Self care. self care. self care.  Oh and we have no money for food.  Well, we have some and will def. make it work. But, all our money is going into this car.  Any more venting stuff I want to get out?  mmmm.  I guess not.

Quote of the Day

Hope for Today
I recalled a story about a man who labored in his garden, plowing, planting, and weeding. The result was a beautiful and bountiful crop. His admiring neighbor commented on what a glorious harvest God had provided. The man replied dryly that she should see the garden when God is the only one doing any of the work. 

This story tells me that I need to want to get well, and then I need to be willing to take some action, to do something differently, before I can make progress in my recovery. My action demonstrates my willingness to be healed, and then God can come in and do the healing.



Slogans for the Day: Let it Begin with Me, One Day at a Time, Progress not Perfection

Gratitude
1.  Bird Calls
2.  Health
3.  A positive attitude
4.  Public transportation
5.  A husband who loves me!!!
6.  And a dog that loves me!!
7. And the sweetest kids around (couldn't stop at 5 today).

Self Care
1.  Stick to nutritional plan, but eat at 600 calories each meal (upper end)
2.  Drink lots of water


Tuesday, July 19, 2016
Another day....

Sitting on my green sofa, looking out at the beautiful mountains.  My head is aching this morning and I'm still being a bit of a baby about not having a car to use.  To get to work I have to use public transportation.

A normal Tuesday involves me driving to the library (about 20 min away), sometimes stopping at Starbucks on the way there, then speech therapy, then the pool, then home.  Then work (30 min away).  Well, I have no car and no agenda.  I think we need to walk to the grocery store at some point.
I thought an early morning walk to Starbucks would be nice, maybe to the drug store.  Someone got water in the advil pills and I'm ready for this headache to go away.  I need pain killers.  The car can get fixed tomorrow, but we don't have the money to fix it.  This is a problem that will get solved.

One of today's reading was on self sufficiency.... "let it begin with me."  I still often want a knight in shining armor.  Early in our married days, this was a big one for me.  If Hubby wasn't doing something "right," my job was to lament or nag.  Not to, you know, just do it myself.  I've now learned that if our lawn is not watered, it's not Hubby's fault.  It's mine.  I want it watered, I should water it.  This realization was difficult for me because it pointed out all my flaws.  It's not that Hubby can't keep the grass watered, it's that I can't.  That's rough.  Then multiply that to all the flaws in our life.  Then came me letting go of perfectionism and trying to be ok with my flaws, etc.

Anyways.  Today, I need to do a few things that are new for me.

1) take public transportation to work
2) I need to get myself to jiffylube to ask the manager to pay for the car.  They can say no, but part of "let it begin with me" is asking for help.


Quote for the day
"Let It Begin with Me" reminds me that no one is a mind reader. If I want or need something, I have to let someone know. I need to ask, which means taking risks. Maybe my request will be granted, maybe it won't. If it is, great. If it isn't, I'll still feel better for having asked, and then I can move on to someone else who might be able to help me.

*I don't know if I feel better for having asked, but I know I did what I need to for my family.

Slogan for the day: Let it begin with me (surprise, surprise)



Gratitude List
1.  J's Little Triangle that she makes with her fingers
2.  This comfy sofa (which we got for free!!)
3.  A healthy body
4.  A huge window 
5.  Birds beautiful calls and the ability to remember names of trees
Monday, July 18, 2016
Good Morning, World!

I woke up tired today, but early.  That is a gift.  I read my meditations and that was good.  Today is Monday.  I start by dropping off my car to see if it has engine damage.  This should result in a nice walk.  It will still be early enough so that it is cool outside.  We don't have anything planned until 11am.  I had forgotten about the car and was picturing maybe nature park we like to go to and then home time and then after the appt., some time at the pool, then work.  I think the new plan will work out even better though.  We can walk to our 11am appt if needed.  I will keep my mind open.  If there is engine damage, the car is done for.

I'm hoping to get dressed, get my hot water and start my day before the girls wake up.  It's almost 6am, so I think I need to go quickly.

Gratitude
1.  My usually mild mannered, yet surprisingly fiercely protective Snowball kitty.
2.  Birds chirping outside my window.
3.  Good health, good health, good health
4.  A power greater than myself.
5.  Madeleine L'Engle's book Many Waters and audio books in general (can't wait to get back into the car to hear more)


Wonderful Quotes for today-
"Today I know that I can plant a seed in fertile soil, but I don't help the plant grow by tugging at the seed in hope that it will sprout. I have to let the process unfold at its own pace."   CTC
"If I take a step back and look at this day as if I were watching a movie, I am sure to find at least a moment where I can enjoy some comic relief." Courage to Change, p. 205 


Slogan for Today - Easy does it!  (This is a good one and one that I often forget.)
Challenge for Today - Find Humor in my Situation
Sunday, July 17, 2016
Today was a wonderful day!  A long Sunday.  I actually lost track of time.  I haven't done that in years!  I got rid of most of the ants.  They keep coming back in random places (like the bathtub faucet).

Hubby has derailed a bit.  He has been acting intoxicated today and when he told me he was going for a run, took his bike to go get a 6 pack of beer.  When he came home and I told him that I saw him, he told me the truth - which was wonderful!  No shaming took place and I'm not getting ahead of myself and thinking this is the end of the world.  Lack of secrets is huge relationship wise and me not becoming super fearful and upset is huge too.  I'm still keeping my boundaries too, but lovingly. I will not be with him when he drinks.  J had a long and late nap, so will be up later.  I put on a Winnie the Pooh movie in Spanish and she's interested - hurrah!

I'm in the office with her.  She's cuddled up with her blanket watching the movie, L is asleep and I'm typing this on my computer.  I can't believe how much I got done today.  The house looks pretty good.  There is more to do, but I can feel good about my victory for now.

Watching Hubby today brought back some bad memories.  I'm so glad that this is not our normal anymore.  There was a link about Amanda Bynes.  She very publicly had adult onset Bipolar Disorder.  So much about her story resonates with me.  I remember seeing stories about her crazy texts and erratic behavior.  I remember people now understanding what was going on with this previously very "together" celebrity.  This is how it was with Hubby and me.  I didn't understand.  I'm glad Amanda Bynes is doing better.  I'm glad Hubby is doing better.  I hope nothing major happens tonight and he just sleeps.

As for me, I'm making new school schedules for the girls.  Food wise, I'm totally off kilter, but I won't feel badly about that.  I lost 20lb over the last few months and I know that one day off won't break that.  Even a few won't.  I'm in maintenance mode.  I don't have any amends to make for today.

I'm currently grateful for

1) The beautiful mountain view I see from my cozy green sofa (I'm out of the office and in the living room now).
2) A whiny ginger haired dog that is the best cuddler around.
3) Vacuum
4) This computer - it was a purchase I wasn't sure if I should make and VERY VERY worth it!
5) Winnie the Pooh

Bye to the Ants

Well, the ants are pretty much gone.  I felt so bad killing them.  I bought some ant poison from the store and sprayed around the perimeter of the house.  It felt horrible because I was killing the ones OUTSIDE, who hadn't come in yet.  But, at the same time............ I knew I was doing what I needed to maintain a certain standard of living for my family.  The ants don't belong in our house and there is a yard filled with dead bugs and other things to feast on.

Hubby is without medication today.  An issue with a gap between doctors and insurance woes meant he went a couple days without.  He should have picked them up yesterday, but it didn't happen.  I still forget how much he needs his meds.  He is a bit of a mess today.  He's acting like he's intoxicated.  I think he could be.  It doesn't matter, either way.  Drinking, bipolar or a combo..........it is a disease.  I navigated a respectful way for me to act, which is new.

Usually, when I don't know if he's drinking or bipolar, I don't know how to draw a boundary.  Today I did it respectfully and gracefully.  Big win!

Cleaning up the house and getting ready for the work week to start.  Woo hoo!  I love Sundays and Summer.  I am in shock that it is only just mid-day.  There is so much more that will happen before the end of the day.  I am excited to see what will be accomplished.

Rise

Well, I'm attempting to adjust the blog to make it a bit more anonymous.  I want to be able to write about what I'm really going through.  And although, at this point I'm not sharing this with anyone, I want to be able to post these posts for some reason.  Ever since the days of Xanga, I've enjoyed online journaling.  Posting words into the unknown.

Anyways.  Ants have taken over our home today.  Well, they really took over a couple days ago.  I hate killing bugs.  But, I'm having to change my policy.  I can't live in a house infested by ants.  They are really taking over.  So, this morning I started killing.  I can't let any live.  If I had only killed the first few, maybe we wouldn't have gotten into this situation.  I'm spraying around the outside too.  J (almost three years old now) is marching around singing, "The ants go marching one by one."  I apologize to them as I'm killing them.  We talk about how they belong outside.  I respect ants as a species.

Anyways, my house is a disorganized mess.  It's a beautiful Sunday morning.  It is only 8am, but we've been up for a few hours.  The air is crisp.  It is a wonderful day to relax and work on improving ourselves.  I'm looking forward to seeing what tomorrow brings.

Mini Gratitude List

1.  For a positive attitude this morning
2.  For my health
3.  For a smiley little one year old in my family
4.  For long time friends
5.  For the joy smiley little one year old's bring me

Quote of the Day: "A winner is just a loser who didn't give up."  - Heard at a meeting

Song: Rise by Katy Perry


Saturday, July 16, 2016

I'm Back!

It has been a long time since I started this blog and a long time since my last post.  So much has changed!

The first post on this blog was from 2012 and I was planning things that I wanted to accomplish before I was 30 years old.  I hit that milestone 11 days from today.  I have to laugh.  I was planning already.... four years in advance.  Trying to be so in control, so on top of things................  I don't think I could have possibly imagined how my life would look today.

My last post was in 2014.  J had already been born and it was before I left the safe world of denial and recognized that my life was falling apart.  It was before I reached my "bottom."  I have some beautiful goals at the beginning of 2014.  Great goals!  Very few of them have been realized, although some have.

So................what changed?  What changed my view of myself and thrust me into a world of revelation and "recovery."

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I can trace it back to the Fall of 2014.  That was both when I became pregnant with L and when things started to feel out of control with my sweet husband.  

-  I found myself sick with pregnancy and overwhelmed.  I still can't separate how much was physical and how much was mental (this thought haunts me).  There were days I couldn't get out of bed or even sit up.  There was a lot of vomiting and a lot of vertigo.  I was incapacitated and unable to do my job on a regular business.  I was cancelling steadily.

-  I made the decision to close my business.  Perhaps keeping it open or hiring someone to save me and get it back together would have worked, but I was too sick to organize that (or felt I was) and I dissolved it.

- I joined Al Anon because Hubby was spiraling into an alcoholic and what I now know to be bipolar existence.

-  I burned through my savings.

-  Hubby borrowed and borrowed and borrowed to keep us afloat.  He drank and borrowed and drank and borrowed.  I started working on me.

-  I found out that Hubby was unfaithful many times. I got help for me.

-  When I had L, we had no gas (we were taking cold showers), no phone (I was using a prepaid skype phone which was outgoing calls only) and only had our car because a friend lent Hubby a huge sum of money to get it back from repossession.  Yet, I was happy and confident.  I was working a strong al anon program and was excited to meet my little girl.

- Shortly after having L, I went to live with my mom for several months.  Hubby was engaging in behaviors that made him unsafe to be around.  I now know that he was manic.  I need to note that he was not violent towards us, but was engaging in risky behavior of his own and people who were up to no good.

- Hubby tried to get sober and after inviting people into our home who stole his car, phone and valuables attended a short rehab for sex addiction and gave his psychiatrist permission to speak to me.  Shortly after, he was diagnosed with Bipolar Disorder and started on lithium.


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2016 seems to be a New Year.  I am working again, although with no employees.  I sublet a cute little office in the best part of town.  Hubby is on medication that controls his impulses.  No acting out with sex, alcohol or marijuana............... No associating with criminal people.  We are slowly cleaning up our lives.  Past mistakes are haunting me and occasionally feel like they are dragging me down.  I'm swamped with debt.  My bank accounts have been levied for back taxes.  My relationship with Hubby is nice and polite and asexual (not the kind of marriage I'd like).  And my self esteem has taken a nose dive.

I choose not to work full time, seeking balance and serenity.  I have beautiful days filled with hiking with the babies, explorations of the arboretum, music and dancing.  We go to the library, pool and read, read, read.  One goal which I am sure we met was the 1000 books in a year.  That is easily met.  We go to the library 2x a week and have about 100 books out at a time.  I go to weekly al anon meetings and have organized babysitting this Summer at my home meeting.  I'm learning to find balance and maintain healthy boundaries and relationships.

I doubt my decision not to work full time, though.  I doubt my competency and my ability to get things done.  Years, now, of sleep deprivation make me less effective.  I feel that I am learning lessons now that I have needed to learn.  They are painful to learn and I find myself vulnerable and raw.  I'll be back with more posts.  I love the name of this blog.   "Living with Confidence"  That is what I strive to do.  I now depend on others and 12 step programs and a greater good, rather than my own ability.

It feels good to be writing here again!