Freeing Fridays: Walking in the Rain

I think I may be the only person who was genuinely excited about the storms today.  I finally got to wear my new, glittered rain boots, so rain didn’t bother me at all!  I never got to do much in the rain as a kid.  If we had rain boots, I don’t really remember them, but I can bet that my mom was not having us messing in mud puddles.  I had no idea what I was missing!  It was the most fun I have had in the last couple (of very challenging ) weeks! I would love to share some encouragement with you on this rainy day.  Because you can make fun of the cheesy revelations all you want, but I have no shame in fighting through this crazy world with rainy day revelations!

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Anyway!  See my video rambles today while I willingly stood out in the rain (and had a fantastic dance party to HARD LOVE by Needtobreathe).  I was actually so in love with my little break that I didn’t even take time to remember to care what I looked like or what angle things were being done at……..and that might be the most freeing thing of it all!

 

And check out these great rain boots!

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Crying Over Cracked Eggs

I have been a pretty tough and optimistic cookie lately. You know the old “power through, I am tough, it could be worse” method…I have even kept my mouth relatively shut vs confrontation (shocking, I know). But, when I just pulled into my parking lot after a long week already, I discovered my eggs, that I just bought, were broken. I needed them to make a dish for someone who had surgery. I was trying to do good. Yet, here I sit. The eggs did it. They sent me over the edge. I don’t even want to walk up the stairs to my apartment. So here I sit, in my car. Turning my music up, taking a deep breath and writing 5 good things that happened today and 5 things I am thankful for, on a crumpled napkin. Oh, and writing this terribly formatted blog while it’s fresh on my mind.


I refuse to cave into misery from an undesirable day (or couple of weeks for that matter). I just can’t. I am too tired to do that anymore. I am only interested in forward movement, solutions and goodness as end results. I can’t do what I used to in going inside, eating something terrible and zombie-ing out on the couch, pouting about how bad things suck.
I’m not typing to be a guru, inspirational, cheesy or declare that I am on a higher platform than another (because if bad food and wine and tv is what you need after a terrible day, then you do you, boo). I’m not publishing it for the secret stalkers to interpret as “Alicia is so negative” or “oh look, Alicia is falling apart and can’t handle rough times” or “Alicia is being dramatic”.
I’m typing it out loud because I need to read it for myself. And I know that there is someone out there who might need to read it too. And if there are a hundred bad things about me, there is at least one good thing in that I have usually been decent with words. I’m typing it to be transparent in the fact that I have a ton of good days and stories and outfits to share, but I am also human (despite my capes and glitter accessories).
It’s ok to have a bad day. It’s ok to say or type it out loud. It’s ok to cry over cracked eggs. But now that this song I was blaring is over and my car did the auto shut-off (and I am realizing its freezing with no jacket)…..it’s time for me to move along. And you can bet I am. I actually needed this to force me into other action in an effort to do something about current situations.
You can acknowledge the bad out loud and you can even feel it however you need to. You just can’t stay there.
Here’s to cracked eggs and hoping my recipe tastes good with wine as a substitute 😝😝😝😝😝. I already feel better!!!

Stop Saying 2016 Was Bad

Yep. I typed it. Out loud. And I will give you all a few minutes to delete me out of fury before we move on to other sentences.

I’ll start by saying that I fully recognize some REALLY crappy things happened on 2016. Good people died. Politics made us rethink what the living heck is actually happening here. Personally, I went through another set of “I really like him” moments, only to be disappointed. I found myself in other situations I never thought I would be in and I watched my gran die.

But, it wasn’t the worst year ever. It wasn’t worse than the year(s) millions of Jews were sent to their demise. It wasn’t the year that we lost 4,000 people from planes crashing into buildings. Once again, not discounting terrible things that did happen this year (so don’t start typing your hate letters just yet).

I’m also not lessening other’s interpretations of “worst”, either. If you feel it, it’s valid. Whether I agree with it or not. All I am saying is that for the majority of us, it wasn’t the worst and here’s why…..

  1. If you’re reading this, you’re still breathing. And I don’t care how awful life may be for you, if you’re breathing, that means there is a chance for it to get better.screen-shot-2017-01-01-at-8-33-12-pm
  2. If number one is applicable, and you really think it was the worst, then you are also in a position to affect change (and I’m pretty proud to say I have lots of friends out there who are forces to be reckoned with in this area).  If my dad were here, he would give me about 5 minutes worth of a pity party (or maybe one gripe on social media) and then he would expect me to figure out what I’m going to do next to move from where I’m at.  And sadly, I never realized how lucky I am to have had him be that way with me, til he was gone.  If you’re passionate about some of the terrible things that went on this year, use that passion to do something (besides post online) to contribute to making that terrible thing a little bit better.  screen-shot-2017-01-01-at-8-31-44-pm
  3. No matter how terribly you took it that celebrities died or that the election didn’t go your way, there is someone out there who had it way worse than you (insert any Aleppo photo here).  So if those two things were really the only awful things that happened to you (and I’m just as guilty as the next of jumping on some of those meme bandwagons – and I believe in the protection of Betty White) – then it still wasn’t the worst.  And before you jump on the election tirade, please refer to number two.screen-shot-2017-01-01-at-8-35-23-pm
  4. There is always still good.  You just have to find it.  And you have to want to seek it out more than you want to cave to the ease of jumping on the bad bandwagon.  We all know how easy it is for viewpoints to be skewed or for only certain things to be placed in front of us via tv or social media…….so if that’s too much for you, make a conscious effort to seek out the good.  I thought about making it even easier for you by placing some links here of “the good stuff” (start with the World Series documentary)….but that would defeat the whole challenge of you making yourself acknowledge good.  And a little leg work never hurt any of us.  I’ll gladly list my personal “good” from the year though, because I need to do my own reflecting of just how good I have it despite the world telling me that I don’t. How about we all get a little more purposeful in following, finding, happening upon good people and good things.  Keep following the bad too, for all I care, but if you’re going to grow at all, challenge yourself to sprinkling in a few good finds and see if over time, that doesn’t chisel away some of that bitter 2016 chip on your shoulder. If you have no desire to do anything but wallow in the misery that you have chosen to associate with, then we have nothing further to discuss, really.  🙂 screen-shot-2017-01-01-at-8-36-15-pm

So.  There it is.  I said it.  Since I’m used to not being the most popular for what I say, it probably won’t be a shock to me if this isn’t received well.  But, it had to be said (or typed). I appreciate a sarcastic meme, joke or calling out of things just as much as the next social media junkie.  I realize that some post in jest and truly don’t feel like this was the worst year ever.  But, there are some of you out there that are truly paralyzed in the belief that this was it, it was the most terrible year ever.  And we need you to get unparalyzed quick-like so that we can have more good! 🙂  If you truly have the belief, then I hope that you passionately commit to making sure your corner of 2017 is better than the last year.

I refuse to let 2017 be a year where my feed is filled with anger and hate and all the bad feels.  I will gladly support and encourage (and make glittery signs of support) all of those who, even though they don’t agree with me, are using their anger to fuel a fire of making a difference and taking ACTION in any part of their lives.  I’ll just be over here working on my own refinement in trying to be a better human, trying to smile more and listen more and trying to make sure that should I die tomorrow, that people know my heart only had love left.  That last part alone is going to keep me busy enough that I shouldn’t have time to worry about whether Sally voted for Hillary or Trump and if that decision means I can have coffee with her.

Love and peace!

Oh, and here are my highlights from the year!

  • Had the most perfect “faux daughter” in the form of a high school foreign exchange student (til she had to leave me in June)img_8740
  • NEW YORK CITY for my birthday/spring break!!
  • Spain!!!!!!!!!!!!! The most incredible trip of my life! Plus, I survived a near plane crash :p
  • DOLLY PARTON concert!!!! And friends who embrace my obsession for her!
  • New friends that come with neon signs of “we were meant to cross paths so that you’ll see that you need to cut that other part of your life loose”
  • Growth in my career (and getting the best boss ever) – despite saying “orgasmic” in a meeting with the president of our company :pimg_1325
  • Standing up to someone and seeing their true colors in a situation where, even though I might not be right, I didn’t allow their words to send me backwards.  I still hope to visit her in her glass house someday, but I’m also pretty proud to see personal growth (this one isn’t as glamorous for you to read as it is for me to look back on – and that’s ok).
  • Seeing my mom find true happiness and blossom into the most happy person I have seen in a long time.img_2142
  • Best World Series ever! (even if you didn’t like either team) This event alone should’ve brought you a little glimmer of hope and made you happy about life, for at least the week that it was happening!img_7194
  • Countless work travel.  Even though it was a lot of time away from home and in hotels (which oddly enough is really the only true gym time I “enjoyed” over the year), It took me out of my comfort zone and afforded me meeting some pretty cool new people, with some pretty neato stories and lives!
  • One of my very best friends moving back and settling “back home” – her open home, open arms, open ears and adventures with her cool kiddos have been the best therapy for me this year!img_6547
  • Learning that cultivating and figuring out who my “core people” are is one of the best exercises I’ve done in a while.  I’m truly loved by people and for the first time in my life I really believe that.  I shutter at the thought of how many years were spent believing in every fiber of me, that nobody truly loved me.  My happy and my smile are sacred and genuine these days!  I have some pretty awesome people to thank for that!

Wearing the Things

America.  Here’s the deal.  I did NOT want to show you this outfit.  As much as I love sharing myself, especially my closet, some aspects are a real struggle to put out there.  The good days are good.  People seem to align to your way of thinking and the interwebs join in chorus of agreement that the look I chose for the day is “on fleek” (is that still a saying amongst you young ones?). The bad days, well, they’re not my favorite.  The days when people think because you are putting yourself out there and you are a blunt person, that they can take liberties in being blunt with you in telling you they don’t like your outfit, or if they were you, they wouldn’t wear this or that.

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One of my biggest “problem areas” physically is my legs.  I have written about them before (remember that guy that called them log legs? Read here if you want).  What’s bigger than my fear of criticism for wearing this style of shoe when I have such big ankles, is my stubbornness.  I am determined to overcome my own stigmas I have attached to myself and to come to a place where when I walk in a room, others can’t keep from catching some of the enthusiasm and fierceness I plan to exude! The stubborn came out in full force when I spotted these shoes on the shelf last year.  They fit, they’re red and they scream “wear me everywhere you can and own every step”!!!  Every voice in my head was saying “ugh, you can’t wear that type of shoe because of your ankle” but all I could concentrate on was that one tiny voice that would wait til it got quiet and then whisper “who. flipping. cares.  These shoes were made for you, dollface”
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Up until today, I have only worn them with jeans to mask at least a little of the legs and create the illusion that I “deserve” to wear them, just like someone with smaller legs.  Wow, that’s hard to type out loud.  It’s been in my head for a while…….I have literally had thoughts that I didn’t deserve to wear something because I’m not as little as they typical people who sport these looks.  And it’s as ridiculous for me to read my own typing of that, as it is for you to read it on your screen.
But……
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Slowly but surely……and thanks to a lot of inspirational chicks who have “paved the way”………I have gotten more and more brave to sport certain looks and it’s feeling better and better every time that I do!  Today is one of the bravest days of them all!  There was a time, a few years ago, that I would’ve walked into a room and had women stared like this morning, I would’ve immediately thought “oh no, they think I look hideous.  I knew I shouldn’t have worn this.  They are probably going to talk about how fat I am.”.  Today, when I stopped by the store and noticed stares, my head immediately went to “oh good, they see how cute this is too!  I bet they want to know where I got these shoes.  I wonder if they think I’m a famous person since I’m so snazzy this early in the morning”!  Do you know how much work that took but how INCREDIBLE it feels.  My mind simply feels lighter and more joyful.  It starts there and leads to me being kinder than normal, more enthusiastic and definitely more energetic.
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I ramble all of that to say this:

I took the VERY LONG way around in all that “find yourself”, “love yourself”, “be comfortable in your own skin” mess that we all are supposed to arrive at.  I took the long way and choose to tell you about it in hopes that if you’re on your way, you get there a little quicker than I did.

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I can’t describe the feeling, but it’s simply awesome when you arrive there.  I physically feel different…..peaceful…..unstoppable…..almost too selfish in the aspect of not caring a single bit what is going on around me.  I wish I could say that I feel this way consistently, but unfortunately, I don’t. Further truth be told, not long ago, I let a really big jerk affect the way I feel and make me question myself.  THAT makes me furious, but that’s also for another blog 🙂 and I’m just too happy right now to write about a hot fireman who turned out to be your stereotypical douchelord.
That deserves a bit of a music break 🙂 This song is perfect for this blog and a little light dancing 🙂 Go ahead – do it!
I cling to the good days.  I document them and use them to remind me not to let the bad days win.  I have no secret weapons or magic potion to this whole living in my own skin thing.
  • I just try to be nice to me.
  • I try not to apologize for it.
  • I own myself and my attitude daily (even if it’s bad or misunderstood and misperceived).
  • I wear the things
  • I celebrate the wins and steps forward
  • I force myself to learn from the steps backwards and not to camp out there very long
Wear the things that make you feel amazing and wear them unapologetically, dang it!!!!!!  I PROMISE you that it will be a small start to a huge ripple effect.  I mean that with all my heart.
If you know nothing else about me, know that there are few who can deny that I am genuine and overly passionate in what I believe.  I believe that every single person should love every single thing about them and NOBODY has the right to impose anything but love and kindness upon them.  If putting my “log legs” out there and rambling about what goes on in my crazy head helps one person to believe that even a fraction more than they did before they started this blog, I win…..and the jerks lose 🙂
The End.
If this got you as fired up  as it did me when I typed it 🙂  Read some other good ones where I “was woman hear me roar”….aka, I wore the things!

When the Internet Hates Me

Well…..I knew this day would come. I just didn’t know it would be this liberating to address this time around. It’s funny how much energy we give to our critics. It’s also funny to me that I have any at all. I usually truck along each day assuming that most barely notice my social media presence.

I don’t have a viral amount of followers. If you were to track my interactions statistics, you would see that I don’t get a lot of engagement, percentages wise. I’m not even good at rallying any “shares” or gaining a lot of traffic to this blog or to any of my posts. I am always shocked to run into people and have them reference a post when I didn’t even think they knew we were social media “friends”. I have my core social media group that I can always expect interaction from (and I love them dearly). So, by all accounts, one would assume that there wouldn’t be a large pool of “haters” out there, since there barely seems to be any “pay attentioners” 😝

This is where my small town naivety flashes over me like a neon sign. OF COURSE there are critics. OF COURSE there are people who find it easier to pick on someone else instead of admitting their own insecurities. OF COURSE there are people who can’t handle how comfortable and happy someone is within their own self. OF COURSE there are people who truly think they are helping you by the incredibly rude (or what they call honesty) things they are bold enough to say to you (because they assume it won’t bother you, since you are a blunt person).

I have addressed critics before (you can read that here for a refresher). Every time I address things like this out loud, I get asked “Did someone REALLY say that to you?”.  The answer is always yes (just because I choose not to air screenshots or names doesn’t mean that it doesn’t happen). I try to make it a habit of not giving them too much attention in posts and such. What they say may rattle me for a second, but usually I shake it off. Plus, I don’t think any negativity or counter productiveness towards another human, deserves much attention.

But, it seems as if once a year or so, for my own cleansing and therapy, I need to address them out loud, in bulk. 😎 you see, part of my problem is that I just don’t care much anymore (as in the amount of cares I give is so little in every aspect of life, that I really need to get it under control before the only friend I have left is my dog). I personally am bathing in how good it feels to finally be at that point. Even better than that is that I care even less about those who have negative things to say to me. I cannot put emphasis on that enough in words. But if you are ever nearby, take me out for coffee and I will GLADLY make sure it’s communicated clearly in person. What leads me to a point of addressing hate towards me at all these days is when I do address it, I simply feel like I have turned off the noise.

It just builds up. Like little annoying coyotes in a field at night. You know they aren’t that close to you, but you can still hear them. They just howl on and on and when enough of them get together, even though they won’t come close to your house, they can still make enough racket to make you want to yell “OH SHUT UP ALREADY“. And that’s where I’m at.

I’m addressing the latest round of hate mail, not necessarily for myself this time, as much as for the hope that others will gain some confidence to be themselves out loud, just a little bit more boldly DESPITE any critics they are encountering.

  • In regards to my closet project: Those aren’t “real” pictures of you. They are filtered or photoshopped.
    • Response: Nope. They aren’t. They are taken “on the fly” every time with my iPhone usually and I am usually just praying that nobody zooms in on the poor resolution of them! I tried to do a couple of “work ahead” shoots with my professional camera and I simply just don’t have time. I don’t know how some of these fashionistas on Instagram do it with a full time job. So, what ya see is what ya get. Example: yesterday’s outfit post compared to this chick’s outfit posts, which are always top notch and way fancier than mine (she is local and had 84k followers, a kid and works…I am beyond lazy compared to that).  I am flattered that my awesome new line of makeup makes me look like I applied filters though!  I am happy to sell you some if you’re interested!
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Photo used from Instagram user themrsgibby
  • “Funny how you are always shooting from an above you angle, Alicia”
    • Response: …welllll…DUH. That’s social media pic posting 101, folks! Why is it bad for me to try and capture my best angle/look? Who voluntarily says “let me shoot from am angle that captures all my chins”? I’m a big enough girl, that an elevated angle isn’t going to make THAT much of a difference, sweets! But, just for fun, here is a straight on angle versus a pic where the person was a couple of steps above me. Yeahhhhhh, way different. I look like a completely different person. NOT!! IMG_9754
  • You can’t post only the good stuff and try to make people think you’re perfect.
    • Response: This one is just laughable and shows that either a) you don’t really follow me at all or b) you have me hidden from your feed. Anyone who knows me for more than 3 posts, knows I post it all. Yes, I try to stay on the positive or humorous side, but that’s because I feel like life is just better from that side. I try to exercise silence (yes, it happens!) versus airing negativity. I used to go on all kinds of rants back in my more immature days 😝. Plus, some things are just none of your social media business. I realize that perception is a part of it. Some may read what I post differently than I intended for it to be interpreted. That’s on me to be mindful of. But at the end of the day, I make no apologies for what I put out there and I certainly make no apologies for how you misinterpret. My give a crap meter is busted beyond repair. BUT…to humor you in regards to “real” pictures…..I gladly give you this, today’s outfit. My hair is a mess (thank Jesus for a hair appt Saturday)…I don’t particularly care for this outfit…..and it’s a straight on shot….that ought to satisfy your craving for something to talk about. Oh, AND I have gained back 5 of the 17 pounds I lost. Yep, better pour more coffee and sit back down to keep talkin.
  • You post too much.
    • Response: I am so sorry that I refuse to change that for you. This one is almost too silly to address. Honey, that’s what the delete button is for. This critic type is one of my faves because it’s almost cute at the way they think they are doing me a favor by telling me this AND not deleting me. “You post too much Alicia, but I am not going to exercise my free will to delete you. Instead, I am just going to tell you that you post too much while secretly reading every post”….lame. PLUS, believe it or not, there are people like me! Hard to believe I know. But there are a tribe of us that run around over posting, over sharing and senselessly rambling. I have provided my favorite example for comparison…my dear friend Aaron Cooper. He can ramble and post with the best of em! :p
  • And, as I do every year, let me give you out loud permission to go away. I will probably not even notice and I can assure you it hurts not one feeling to be deleted. I am not for everyone. And that’s ok! IMG_9759

That should wrap us up for another little while!

My point is this….

I am real. I am imperfect. And honestly, I am none of your business. I have fought a battle for YEARS and finally won. You are always invited along my crazy journey because I am an open sharer by nature. But, you will never get close enough with any negativity to keep me down. 

Pipe down coyotes….I have a whole big world to conquer!!IMG_3634

 

Dear Guy Who Stood Me Up Tonight…..

To the guy who stood me up today:

😎

Thank you for doing that. No, really. I mean it. It’s been a rough week. I felt better enough to shower and curl my hair a little, line my lips and “smokey my eyes” for you. It was the first time this week that I felt good about my appearance.


I wondered if you would notice my new lipstick. I mean, you wouldn’t know it was new. But maybe you would just notice a brightness to them in general. I used a new perfume. It was the perfect mix of flowery and sweet. Don’t worry, I only sprayed once. I didn’t want to overwhelm you with loud smells. I imagined which topic of convo we would start with and imagined my smile and witty comebacks in the mirror (yes grown women do that). I even played my “hot date” playlist while I was getting ready to get me in a great mood….as I blew my nose and coughed 4 million times. You know what I was most excited about? That my shoes are too big. Crazy, I know. But apparently since I have lost weight and don’t stay as swollen as much, my shoes are too big. Who would have ever thought!!


Then you were a no show.


I take dating disappointment way better than I used to. I was probably more bummed that I put all that effort into getting ready just to have to wash the makeup back off. I was worried about us being a match on a few levels anyway. You could’ve been a little bit more courteous and actually given me a head’s up that you wouldn’t make it. But you definitely aren’t the first to do that to me. For about 4.2 seconds, I actually wondered what I did to make you lose interest before our first date.


Then I got a text from a friend who needed a visit and drinks. I almost changed out of my outfit and threw my hair in a ponytail to go meet her at the pub down the road. That’s when it hit me. I decided not do either of those things. I kept it all on and met her for a bit.


 And you know what? I realized that I have fallen way too far into not giving myself any effort unless it is a potential date or advancement of some relationship (business or personal). I worked really hard to get away from that once. I cannot believe I was headed back there again.


Don’t get me wrong. I love my jammies, ponytail and makeup free face a lot. A whole lot. But what I need to love and value more are those dear to me….and myself. And both of those things deserve good makeup, good perfume, great hair and good outfits WAY MORE than some first date does.


So, I walked into that pub like I meant it. I laughed and loved on my friend. She encouraged me without even knowing I needed it. Something that would’ve never happened if I would’ve been out trying to impress you. I think I was trying to fill a void with you after being sick and pouty and lonely this week. A void that I know damn well couldn’t be filled by you.


Thank you for standing me up. Through it, I am reminded being alone doesn’t mean that I can’t be “satisfied” through genuine time with dear friends. I am realizing how truly tired of dating I really am. I am starting to see that my time and heart would be better served with so many other things I have been wanting to do…and could spend time doing if I wasn’t trying to prove to the world that there is someone decent left and someone decent who will fall in love with me. I realize how tired I am of always being the one to initiate and progress the conversation and relationship. It gets awfully quiet when you wait on someone to text you first or finally ask you out and initiate real plans. I am reminded that I can put makeup on and curl my hair on a random weekday, in between nose blowing sessions, just because I want to. I was reminded of a path I promised to never take again and can now look at my map and explore another road.


If I ever do run across you again, I will gladly by you a drink to thank you for tonight.

Swift to Hate….

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In light of the Kesha/Taylor Swift current events (and no I don’t want your opinions or arguments)…..I got into heated conversation with someone today (in defense of Taylor). The person was very angry, lashing out about TSwifty and calling her names, etc.  But every time I tried to ask “what could she have done differently that would’ve satisfied you in this situation”, they couldn’t provide an answer.  They would throw out more anger, a few snarky tweets at me and such, but never could answer.  Many seem to be angry at Taylor, first because she was silent in chiming in on Kesha’s situation and secondly, when she responded by donating $250,000.00.  She can’t win for losing due to a lot of toddler-like “fit throwers” out there.

Facts:
  1.  Taylor Swift has no governing authority to make any legal decisions in the Kesha case.
  2.  TAYLOR SWIFT IS NOT OBLIGATED TO DO ANYTHING….nothing.  zero.  I know, you’re ready to light me on fire for that one, but it’s the truth.  She has no obligation to do a dang thing.
  3. Every time someone spends a tweet, post, blog, whatever hating on Taylor – that is one less chance to voice support or use the energy to move toward a change in a system that is clearly flawed and needs the attention.
  4. Regardless of what you think should be done for Kesha, the fact is that she isn’t recording……therefore, it is highly likely that her finances are being affected.  I’m quite certain that Taylor’s donation will go a lot further for her than your tweets griping about her.  Taylor helps (I would hope because she has a good heart, but probably also in response to the negative pressure, sadly) and is still criticized.
I have spent the rest of the afternoon thinking about the what seems to be out of control anger.  I remember when I was put in the same situation.  I was so flipping mad, said horrible/hurtful things to the person involved and basically was short of throwing myself on the ground, kicking and screaming.  What probably infuriated me more, was that the whole time I am throwing my “fit”, the other person just calmly sits there waiting on me to finish.  When I finally stopped, she replied with “Alicia, I have heard everything you have said.  Can you tell me one thing I could’ve done that would’ve made you less or not angry?”

Silence.  Silence so much that I could’ve almost choked on my own tongue.  I couldn’t give her one solid answer.  I couldn’t think of one single thing.  Out of quick desperation, I had a few thoughts cross my mind.  But as quickly as they came into my mind, I just as quickly realized how stupid they would’ve sounded coming out of my mouth.

What that wise (and thankfully very calm-spirited) woman made me realize was that I wasn’t even mad at her.  I was mad at the situation.  I was mad at a situation that wasn’t going to be fixed immediately, by her as one person….and it certainly wasn’t going to be fixed by me being mad and tearing down someone else.

I feel like the exact same question should be posed to a lot of “haters” out there these days (yes, I’m specifically referring to the hate towards Taylor Swift in regards to Kesha – but I also mean haters in general).  Our society is so quick to attack and even quicker to attack easy targets (I happen to be an easy target based on my big mouth – but not quite on the scale of Taylor 🙂 )

WHAT IF we all paused for a minute and thought through what really angers us about the situation?  THEN, what if we actually looked at ourselves and what we could do or change (either externally or within our own self) first before we went after others?

If you have an issue with someone and you can’t answer the question of what they could do differently (legit, tangible, quantifiable actions), then you need to think twice about launching your attack.  ALSO, if you CAN answer the question, you are best served by having the mindset of helpfulness, grace, mercy and patience, NOT judgement and snarky behavior.

Stop tearing others down.  Stop speaking from that which you do not know.  Be a vessel for positive movement towards change.  Otherwise, pipe the heck down and leave others alone!

  Fatty McFaterson Is No More

I have struggled lately cause I haven’t seen any big changes recently. But I knew it was my fault for not working as hard the last few weeks. I never care about being “thin”. I just want to be healthier. I truly mean that with everything in me. And being mentally healthy is just as important. Because I can tell you that in some of these before pictures, the ugliest thing about me was the inner struggle much more than the outer appearance issues. It feels SO GOOD to be working hard again and slowing down enough to make wiser choices for myself.


When you see yourself everyday, it’s hard to notice changes when they don’t seem to come in the form of 20 pounds dropping over night. I even noticed that I was falling back into old tricks of trying ridiculous angles on my outfit pics to try and look the smallest. I did not want to do that again. It is SO IMPORTANT to me and at my core to be authentic and real. It’s who I am. So the last thing I wanted to do was start deceiving with my pics. That alone was motivation to get my butt back in gear.
But, when I came home after work today to an apt of teenagers and one who hadn’t seen me in a while made more than one comment about how different I looked, I thought I would go through old pics and make comparisons. Man, am I glad I did. To you, it may not be THAT big of a difference. To me, it’s A WORLD of difference. What is crazier to me is that these comparisons are only from October to now!
 It’s almost a completely different face – less puffy, better complexion…and do you see that happy? Oh the hurt you don’t even know about that was dwelling within me in that top 3rd pic!!!!

 

 It’s a healing difference – even though it had been a couple of months out of a break up in the before pics, there was still SO MUCH anger and hurt. I still get a little angry about it. But the new faces….those are healing faces. Those are faces that are excited about life and that have owned where she is at….determined to be a better than ever face.


Still so far to go. But still so much difference already. I will always be under construction. It’s just so nice to have a different approach to the project lately. Peace, determination, forgiveness of myself (still working on the forgiving the ex part) and the expectation that the new greatness coming, isn’t going to happen overnight…..those are the beautiful descriptions of Alicia 2.37923 😝


I recently had the opportunity to take some really hard truths given to me from a friend and go 400 steps backwards…or finally do something different. The old Alicia would’ve taken the truths spoken and dwelled, cried, ate my emotions and over analyzed for who knows how many days. I would’ve talked to a hundred others trying to get confirmation that those things couldn’t possibly be true. I would’ve decided that I might as well give up on ever being different.

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Instead, I took it to the treadmill and opened a book I never finished about how successful women think differently. And it just so happened that my last bookmark from where I left off was on a segment about strengths and weaknesses. We should be aware of weaknesses within us, but we should concentrate and grow from our strengths…not from constantly trying fix a weakness. Well if that train wasn’t on time, I don’t know what was!!!
See, once again, not a big change to speak of for someone else to read…but a HUGE change for me. i would dare say that it is one of the things I am most proud of in a long time!!
So, THANK YOU for watching me change and being so willing to embrace it and for letting me be me…authentically…and now authentically smaller 🙂

Dying in Conversation

As you know from my previous couple of blogs, my precious gran is in the end stages of life. I am trying, with all my might to slow down and be present in the process. I want to cherish the last moments and observe outside of what I normally would.

Today was good. Relatively speaking.
My gran was more responsive. She was awake most of the day. She knew who we all were. She could carry on conversations. She scolded my uncle for picking on me (she always has taken up for me).  I find myself wondering if this is a boost of good because the end is more near or if we really are improving in some ways. I’m a little selfish in her good day because it gave me another chance to visit and have conversation with her.
I don’t think we enjoy simple conversation enough.  I think we sometimes feel like we have to speak so “significantly” and be full of opinions, that we forget some of the best things shared, are simple.
Today, I purposely had and soaked up plain conversations.  And even still, in the midst of this sadness, my heart is so full.  I cannot say that enough.  My heart is SO FULL.  I am amazed at how when you slow down, what you really get out of it.
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I talked with my gran who even in dying, is still showing upmost kindness.  She apologizes to her nurses for having to do the unpopular work.  She says yes ma’am and no ma’am.  She doesn’t ask for anything.  But she tells you that she loves you.  She scolds my uncle for picking on me.  I watched her talk to every single visitor she has had today.  She has asked more about them than giving them the chance to check on her.  She asked great-granddaughters how their day was and never complained even when she was tired.
I soaked up her simple kindness in conversation.

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I talked with my little nieces who came to visit.  I had the privilege of keeping them occupied in the spare room so we wouldn’t disturb gran and my sister could visit with her, without little hands and voices.  I learned that Oreos are very important to toddlers.  Few sounds are sweeter than the conversations between sisters as they share some Sweet-Tarts.
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I learned that 6 year olds know what selfies, Snapchat amd wi-fi is. Sometimes all we really need are a handful of snacks, an Oreo crumbed kiss and to hear “ricia I wub you whole bunch”
I soaked up innocence in conversation.
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I visited with my gran’s aide (I also used to work with her as a teenager when I was an ER clerk). She has served others for 26 years.  She has always been vivacious.  She loves a good casino and shopping trip.  She just lost her husband 2 months ago and decided to keep working to stay busy.  Her dog also died this week.  She is thankful.  My gran responded the most in conversation (that I saw) with her.  Her voice is gentle.
I soaked up strength, resilience and gentle in conversation.
Today is good.  My spirit needed it.