Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Reset Button

Well. I had a whole direction I was going to go today but in circling back around to my blog after yet another long absence and reading through my past "recent" posts, I realize that what I was going to write about is exactly what I've already written about. And gone on about. Over and over. Soooo, THAT'S a big sign, I'd say... Today, I think, instead, I'll just keep moving. I won't even be so bold as to say that I'll move forward. For now, maybe I'll just bob and weave, bob and weave. At this point, sideways is progress, since it seems backwards has been the slow course I've been taking for, oh, let's just say A WHILE. I won't begin this time with extreme measures and drastic eliminations as that never seems to work out too well for me. I won't set any unrealistic goals and I won't put crazy expectations on myself, but I will try. I think that's it for now, as a start. I will simply try, and I will just keep moving.

Thursday, November 07, 2013


I think one of the worst types of heartbreak is the kind we bring on ourselves. No external forces, people or events come into play, but instead the ache is a direct result of the decisions and actions that leave us sad, depleted and wasted with grief and regret. I'm there now. I can't get past it or around it, and I definitely can't seem to get through it. The truly awful thing is that all I've wanted for longer than I care to remember is to just FIX IT. I'm kind of like a guy that way when it comes to my own problems: I don't want to talk about it - I want to move straight to the solution. No discussion, no tears, no blaming - just assemble the parts and put them together as effectively and efficiently as possible. Get everything to work and move on. Any other time, I'm the first person to sit and analyze people and situations, flinging out my opinion and my own little brand of armchair psychology. I will talk about someone's drama all day long - to the degree that it probably feels less like a conversation and more like an interview - and I'll do it with genuine interest and desire to learn, understand and help. All of that would be useful in addressing my own situation, but tilting that lens on myself is simply just too much to deal with. I let it go and what starts as a hairline fracture becomes the crack that leads to the inevitable: the heartbreak. The heartbreak that I can't talk about, or won't talk about or more truthfully, that I'm sick to death of talking about. It's ruled my life and it dominates my thoughts, my movements, my time. It is the monkey on my back and no matter how badly I want it gone, it has settled in so comfortably and wrapped itself around me so tightly that I fear we may never be pried apart. And I don't know what to say about it, other than that I can't fix it. I HAVE TO AND I CAN'T. It continues to tear away at me, taking more of the pieces of which I've already lost too many. The wounds won't heal and the temporary bandages won't stay on. And all I end up doing is inviting more hurt, clawing in deeper and creating new scars to hide the old ones. Creating new heartbreak. I'm getting too old for this. There are other things I want to do, to think about, to spend my time on. Something has to happen here. I have to allow myself to look for the solution by looking at the problem and that is just too scary. But staying the same way, not doing anything about it, is far scarier. Where to begin...?

Friday, October 25, 2013

Expert Timing

I have this need for everything to be just right, sparkling clean, perfectly folded, fully stocked, expertly positioned - with the stars all in complete alignment - before I will allow myself to move forward with something. Cases in point: starting a new diet until all of the "right" foods are in my fridge and pantry ("last" pizza and chocolate binge included). Allowing company to come over only after every spec of dust is vacuumed, toilets are gleaming and ambient mood lighting is taken care of (truly, candle placement is very key). Restringing and tuning my dad's guitar and narrowing down the perfect combination of tutorials through books and You Tube before I will even think of letting myself learn how to play. Even setting up my voice mail on my cell phone until I got married - "It makes sense to wait because I'm changing my name." Well, I got my phone in August, got married in September and I'm still finding excuses as to why I can't do that task yet (surely something to do with time and the prospect of having to no doubt re-record several tries to make it seem as if the message came out cool and casual on the first attempt, thereby exhausting me just thinking about it). It is the way I live my life and it is the way I've tip-toed around my return to my blog. I've been wanting to write constantly. I think about it, I plan it, I plot ways for all of the elements to come together to create that magical chemistry I once had years ago when I used my blog to document my years in Denver, my ex-marriage, my friends and family, the death of my father. I wrote because I wanted to, not because I needed followers and cared about the perfect header or the expertly filtered Instagram that would show how creative and talented and mysterious I'm sure I must be, all through a smartly-angled smile. I use any manner of excuses, including laundry, dishes, getting to the gym, whatever I settle on in the moment. "I'll write when Isla calms down, when she's had a bath, when her teeth are brushed and she's had a bedtime story." By the time that magical sequence of events actually happens, I'm too tired to even flip open my laptop. This last non-blogging year (okay, longer than that), my reasoning has been that I'm trying to find the ultimate blog skin, to orchestrate the balance of colors and fonts and links and gadgets. To have the mind-boggling ability to edit HTML, or hell, to just understand what HTML even is. Not to mention upload those mysterious Instagrams of mine. When A becomes B becomes C, I'll do [insert project or To-Do List here],and then... Time slips away and I realize: once again, I've spent so much energy setting up the scenarios in my perfect world that I've denied myself the chance to truly live in my real world. To say the things that need saying. To try things that scare me. To open myself up to possibilities and grow from the experiences, good or bad. I may not have an inner computer geek waiting to come out or a latent ability to rock the guitar after a couple rounds of basic chords, but I'm honestly tired of being so terrified of failure that I can't even bear TRYING TO FIND OUT. Even more simply, I don't want to care about readying the perfect set-up on my blog before I allow myself to again take up the one creative outlet that's been solely for me, with no reason or intent other than to capture whatever words I've assembled at the time. I'm taking that pressure off of myself here and I'm hoping I'll learn how to do that in, oh, nearly every other area of my life. I can't figure out how to upload a picture, a gadget, a widget or a what-the-hell-is-it. I'm insanely sporadic with my content, and I'm way too liberal with my commas and my run-on sentences. Also, I DON'T have the "right" foods in my kitchen. But you know what? I don't have all the wrong ones, either. There's a little combo of crumbs and lint and other various debris at any given time on my carpet, and I certainly do not understand HTML. AT ALL. But I have a little time here and there, and I want to learn to fill it with things and people and experiences that make me happy and make me grow and ultimately, make me ME. Tonight, it was about finding my voice again, through words. Three weeks ago, I had Dad's guitar polished, re-strung and tuned. It's in the corner of my room, ready. Not mocking me, but instead silently imploring me to push the boundaries of my comfort zone of not trying and instead, to simply DO THAT. TO TRY. I'm nervous about it, but I will. A becomes B, and scenarios become action. Or at least, that's the plan.

Tuesday, April 03, 2012

Amanda, Meet the Rug.

Now, try to stay on your feet while it gets pulled out from under you…

My life is in complete upheaval right now.  I just started a new job, we jammed all of our stuff in storage, moved out of our house and now we are temporarily staying at my mom’s house to be closer to my work until the company relocates back to the Grand Junction area in September.  Our move took the entire month of March because I couldn’t afford any time off and having a two-year old at home didn’t allow for Sean to get a hell of a lot done during the day.  On top of that, the same week I started my new job, I started teaching a spin class at the gym on Wednesday nights (which I LOVE!), so between that, learning my new position and commuting up and down from Rifle to GJ several times a week to fit it all in, I’m a bit strung out.  We had our final walk-through on the house last Saturday, got our deposit back and in the bank to save for our move back to The Junk in a few months, and now we just have the task of settling in at my mom’s while not making it seem like we’ve completely taken over her home.

 All fine and dandy and insane, except that Sean, who has been steadily looking for employment for the past two years, suddenly received a call on Sunday afternoon about a job he applied for over four months ago.  In Durango.  Not only is the guy extremely interested in Sean, but he is heading down to Durango tomorrow for an interview on Thursday.  He was all but offered the job on the phone, and there is potential for it to morph from a shop foreman job, which is where he’d be starting, into a drafting and detailing position.  This is where that shiny new degree of his will come in handy – finally!  He hasn’t been able to find anything in his field since way before he even graduated and the potential in The Junk had come to a screeching halt, which is why we decided to focus on my job.  Plans to move up weren’t panning out for me in my full-time position at the gym, so I moved on to a company with opportunity for long-term growth and advancement.

Now, we have some hard decisions to make.  We aren’t going to do anything rash until we see how the interview goes, but Sean is pretty excited about this, which means we have to think about our future from all angles.  We have his kids to consider and how often we’ll get to see them.  I have to research what job prospects will look like for me, and whether it’s possible for me to find something that allows me to stay with Isla more, which I would love.  The fact that I’ve just started a great job doesn’t make it easier, though.  The cost of living is more expensive, which means we won’t be able to afford lots of space.  We will be closer to Sean’s family for a change, which would be great – he hasn’t spent more than a few random weekends in Durango in the past 20 years.  We both have friends in the area that we never get to see and I even have some family a few hours away, so it’s not like we would be moving to a place where we don’t know a soul.  Durango is an adorable town and the first time Sean and I visited, I bugged him and bugged him about how much I’d like to live there.  Well, now.  Almost six years later, I may get my chance, whether I’m ready or not.

Oops.  There goes the rug. 

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Forced Reflection

Tomorrow is my last day at work for the next two weeks while I'm out recovering from a medical procedure. I'll be scrambling to get every last detail sorted out so that I can feel comfortable about being gone so long, and then I'll be scrambling around to figure out what the heck I'm going to do on bed rest for 14 days! Well, it may be more like 10 or so, if I'm feeling particularly healthy and motivated. No matter how great I'll be feeling, one thing I won't be doing is working out - FOR SIX WEEKS.

Six weeks?!? This is a nightmare! Working out is the only thing that balances me when I get stressed, when I'm anxious, when I'm nervous and most certainly, when my diet has severely derailed (see previous posts) and I need a calorie-burning Yin to my junk food Yang. I feel like I'm going to be a ship lost at sea, waiting for the lighthouse that won't be beaming my way into the harbor until New Year's - just in time for those pesky resolutions. In the meantime, I'm a little freaked out about how I'm going to handle myself. With two weeks of laying around ahead of me, I'll definitely have some time to figure it all out.

I'll be sending the next few updates from my makeshift desk of pillows and blankets - stay tuned for all of the excitement!

Thursday, October 27, 2011


Every single time I post, it is ridiculously late and my brain is at about a 4% functioning capacity. So I am very quickly posting to say I'm still here, and new posts will be coming shortly after me. Then I'm going to bed because A: my daughter will be up no less than 17 times tonight, I'm sure, and B: I have an early morning swim planned with my friend Molly and falling asleep in the pool will surely hinder my ability to clock in a good workout.

I trained with Bo yesterday and it was so great. I finally conquered the Spider Monkey and was able to clear the whole weight bench this time - FOR ALL THREE SETS - rather than just barely lift off of the floor, like before. I felt pretty fan-freaking-tastic about myself, I have to say. (If you don't know what the Spider Monkey is, ask Bo - I'm sure he'd love to demonstrate!) Today was our big end-of-the-month push at the gym - a day during which I don't take lunch and I certainly don't work out. I need to be available to sign up the masses! However, last night I packed my workout bag, not even thinking about it, and I'm so happy I did! My wonderful friend Casey, who also trains with Bo, had to cancel her session at literally the last second so she called and offered it to me because it was already paid for and she didn't want it to go to waste. Now I know what I want to be when I grow up: insanely wealthy with unlimited funds to spend on personal training. WHAT A LUXURY it was to train twice in one week!! No wonder we recommend this to members who sign up for PT! It truly, truly makes a difference, and it's so much more motivating! We did this insanely hard yet fun circuit workout in the GGX room and although I'm pretty sure I will have lost complete function of all leg muscles by tomorrow morning, I was stunned by the difference from training just once a week. As my sessions dwindle down to the last few, it's hard for me to appreciate what I have left because now I just want more, more, MORE! If I could go three times a week for two months and combine that with the ultimate perfect nutrition efforts, I can only imagine what would happen! ALL THINGS AWESOME, I know that.

For now, I'll just say I got spoiled this week, and thank you, Casey, for thinking of me! It was truly a great gift, and my motivation is once again right where it should be: going strong. Attitude of gratitude is what I'm sporting today. For my job, for good karma and for good things to come.

Thursday, October 13, 2011


I want better for myself, but I'm too afraid to go after it.

There it is: the ugly truth.

I have spent so much time analyzing what's going on with me and my weight. I've been chasing down possibilities and trying to come up with solutions like a mad woman, and I feel like that's exactly what I've become: mad. Oh yes, definitely angry, but more along the lines of stone cold crazy. That kind of mad. I've bounced from diet to pill to shake to juice, and I've even considered going gluten free. REALLY, AMANDA?? I've had my thyroid checked and scanned, my blood drawn and my hormones tested. I went to my doctor and then went to a different doctor because I didn't believe my regular guy was getting to the real root of the problem. This type of behavior is beyond ridiculous even for me, and as anyone who knows me can attest, I can be pretty ridiculous. In an endearing way, of course. Wide awake and staring into the darkness, the epiphany came around three a.m. one sleepless night last week: I AM MY OWN PROBLEM. I let fear stand in the way of my own success. Not my thyroid, not my post-pregnancy hormones, and certainly not my extreme hatred for vegetables. It's all me. No glossing it over, no sugar-coating. Just BOOM: FACT.

I've been this way my whole life. I've wanted things, I've started to go after them, and as soon as the road gets a little rocky, I quit. I don't even make it to the forks in the road because I've already detoured and doubled back. I've let the few big hills become my daily little speed bumps and rather than cruise right over them, I take the long way around. The thing that has brought this into focus has been Spin class. I love Spin. Love it! For the past couple of months, I've been thinking about becoming an instructor. I've talked to Linda about it and she thinks I should do the RPM training in January. Bo thinks I can do it. Sometimes I think my body can do it, even where it is now. It's my brain that's having a hard time getting on board. As enthusiastic as I am, I'm scared out of my head. "Who wants to take a fitness class from me? I'm way too big to teach Spin. How could anybody take me seriously?" Negative, negative, negative. The more I want it, the more I talk myself out of it. I don't know what happens when the groundwork has been laid in your head that makes you think you're not good enough, but once you've received that signal, it's hard not to keep tuning into it. Even if the only person sending that signal is you.

I deny myself good things. I starve on health because I binge on junk. I kill myself in a workout only to give in to the voice that tells me, "You'll never be an athlete so have another cookie." I mangle my good intentions and my well-being suffers. Lately I've felt as if I'm fraying around the edges with only a few solid threads holding me together and I'm trying to understand that FOOD ISN'T GONNA FIX IT. It doesn't pay the bills or take care of the piles of laundry on the couch. It doesn't spend quality time with my daughter or figure out how we can afford Christmas presents. It most certainly doesn't take away fear. That I have to figure out on my own. Actually, I have a lot to figure out, but getting rid of the fear is now at the top of the list. Once that happens, I can make way for those good things.

Now, how do I do that? I'm scared.