Feeling Grateful Friday – 11.3.17

Hey friends! Long time, no words. Every now and then I like to do this thing where I list what I’m grateful for. After all, that’s what I’m all about here at Exhale Gratitude. On this lovely 3rd day of November, here’s what’s got me feeling all sorts of grateful.

  • MY GUY – (Heads up! This is a little sappy. :))There really is something to be said for falling in love with your best friend. I took a trip out to Michigan to see him this past week and it was perfect. Not perfect in the sense that everything went perfectly or we didn’t have disagreements. But perfect in the sense that no matter what, he values communication and keeping that dialogue at the forefront of our relationship. I’ve never had that before and unhealthy pasts create unhealthy habits until they are broken. He has shown me that and so much more. Discussions on our hometown, old friends and where we went to school but also knowing that despite everything we’ve seen each other through, we strive to show the other how much we care. I’m the happiest girl because I have realized a great deal about standing on my own outside the confines of a relationship, as well as what a man and partner looks like.
  • NEW ROUTINES – Ok, so this has only started TODAY but I’m holding myself to taking morning walks in my neighborhood at least 3 times a week. If you know me at all, you know that the cold weather and I do not get along. Being cold is right up there with the texture of coconut and pulpy orange juice. That being said, I will 100% not enjoy being stuck inside ALL winter. So, I’m bundling up, tuning into a Podcast/Audiobook and seeking a change in scenery. It felt really good. I even found a free little library nearby! The tiniest deviations from our normal routines can often bring the most simple displays of happiness.

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  • GETTING BACK TO YOU (ME) – I’ve been stuck and it’s been unbearable at times. Awful anxiety and trying to figure out why. After some tests, discussions with people who love me, and serious introspection, I truly feel like I’m coming back around. Just like the seasons of nature, we too burrow away at times. Our leaves fall as we change into something new for the spring. It can be subtle or it can be a bit more prominent. Our bodies are super smart and when we haven’t dealt with something, it plays out in different ways. There is nothing wrong with admitting when we are struggling. In fact, it needs to be done more than it is. We are human and with that comes facets that we are still trying to understand. Be kind to yourself in your journey and lean on those who love you most.

I wish you all a beautiful weekend filled with gratitude for whatever is igniting you right now, even the smallest moments that are pulling you through what you may be facing. Wishing you lots of love and goodness.

 

Cavities & Do-Overs

I was in the grocery store a couple days ago and I spent an excessive amount of time in the oral care aisle. Immediately, two things came to mind:

  1. I’m getting older/more adultish/boring?!

  2. When did this become such a priority?

First of all, I would just like to state the extensive quantity of oral hygiene options that exist. From multi-flavored flosses to more toothpaste than I care to think about, it is, like most options in society, far more than we probably need.

Also, I don’t want you to think that I didn’t previously care about my teeth because I did. However, I also had settled on the fact that between my sisters and I, (at least the one closest in age to me), I received the short end of stick when it comes to being blessed with next to perfect teeth. I had braces, cavities and my wisdom teeth removed. On the other hand, my sister could scarf down 4 Jawbreakers, a bag of Hershey Kisses and a box of Milk Duds, all while not getting a single cavity in the process. How nice. (I love you anyways Han.)

I had a dentist appointment this past January and while I didn’t have any cavities that needed immediate attention, there were a couple trying to sneak their way in. My dentist informed me that with proper brushing, flossing and a slight cut back in sweets (gasp!), I could potentially reverse this process. While I am an avid fan of brushing my teeth, I do not excel quite as much in the flossing department. I really put forth a solid effort for awhile and then it just falls to the wayside. One of those things I’ll do tomorrow ya know? And then it is sort of forgotten about altogether or done occasionally, much like Thanksgiving dinner or cleaning the inside of your car. And that whole cutting back on sweets? I’m not even sure how to start that without some shedding some tears. (Especially these past couple of weeks—>Life changes which led to stress such as the following but are not limited to: A break-up, moving, taking my first CASA (guardian ad litem) case, leading a community group, wanting to be awesome in my new residential mentor role, etc.) So yes, sweets and I have become the very best of friends. Can I just add that I work at a place where we make frozen custard, which is pure deliciousness?? And Easter candy is out which means one fantastic piece of magic is currently in my life….Starburst Jellybeans. 1,000 times yes.

But, I have also acknowledged my increased sugar intake recently (as has my skin) and while it makes my nerve endings all happy with delight, it is also not so great for my overall health. Nor is it ideal for keeping my teeth for a good while longer. So, there I was, staring at the Scope, Crest and Colgate options filling the shelf. Flosses, toothpastes and mouthwashes oh my. I selected my items and left the store in the hopes of reaching a cavity-less future.

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May you find your love, light and peace within those chances at a fresh start

I got to thinking that we can often reverse or undo those greater decisions that we find ourselves in. Those choices or situations where we didn’t get it right the first time around but are greatly anticipating our chance at a do-over. It can take more work, focus and discipline than we originally had planned. We maybe need to spend more time in the self-care aisle of life, selecting the resources or people that will help us reach our desired outcome. Sometimes we slip up a bit, forgetting our routine regimen, but we also know how to self-correct in order to find our course again. This season of my life has steadily been teaching me that. Just because I find myself alone again, I don’t have to fall back into old habits and unhealthy ways of coping. I can seek my footing in my faith, friends, and family. In the assuredness of who I am in this moment and all I am working towards becoming. Never have I felt more peace and understanding in those doors that have been opened for me lately. Here’s to perseverance in the pursuit of keeping that which hinders our growth at bay.

Happy Sunday friends.