Archive for the ‘happiness’ Category

I feel like my brain is in this perpetual world of trying to find myself. A writer?  A blogger?  A stream of conscious writer-murderer?  A compound-sentence destroyer?  A mother? A wife? A sister?  A daughter?   A maid?  A laundry avoid-er?* A celebrity factoid expert? A closet wanna-be-back-up dancer for Missy Elliot? A Nae Nae-dance-you-tube-watcher?

I know it’s all about balance , but the internet and “advice columns” and the such, make you feel like their is something wrong with you if your not chasing success driven opportunities like a thirteen year old chasing down the band members of One Direction.  We all can’t be elite or at the top of our game all day, everyday; yet society will not let you get away at thinking this simple thought even for a second.

For me, success  is doing something everyday to help people feel better about themselves  through my writing and  daily interactions. (even if it’s a tiny act of kindness) ..  And maybe try to knock out the ‘Nae Nae’ from time to time when I finally do get around to folding and putting away laundry.  Above all, I absolutely chase a sense of inner peace completely absent of anxiety,  more than I chase society’s definition of success. True serenity crashes  against the grain of  today’s modern woman.  Therefore, there is this perpetual tug of war in my brain “to get it all done, SON” and “Its OK to hit the wrinkle shield button several times”

Through my daily readings/ interactions and even from myself, I find one common theme, especially with woman.  We are failing at something. ( our weight, our bodies, our career, our marriage, our life , our eating habits)  or they are working so hard to keep it all together and stay fifty steps ahead of everyone else that they do not seem to have time to enjoy life or a bowl of ice cream without feeling guilty because they have ingested  “empty calories”. – (Whoever came up with the term ‘empty calories???’)

I find that when there is insurmountable pressure to be the best or act our best 100% of the time, this carves the way for some very dark, lonely days with the shades drawn like a vampire, eating ice cream and feeling guilty because you did not choose the bowl of  undressed super food kale. (I had a lady verbally give me the recipe for an OIL FREE dressing that she puts on her Kale , I was like WHAT IS THE POINT?, but I smiled and nodded because I know all to well the feeling of trying to stay inside the rigid guidelines of what a 43 woman should or should not enjoy for food  on a daily basis.)

In this journey of trying to find MYSELF, my purpose in life, I have decided that my two  goals in writing especially, is to   1) make people LAUGH  2) inspire people to feel enough with who they are at the core (this does not mean “never change”, this means inspire people to accept their strengths and their flaws and make changes to improve their overall mental and physical health as THEY HAVE decided, not decided by society).

Lists of 5 or 10 things do well in the blogging sphere because it helps center people on certain topics that they can relate too individually or pull them together in commonality.   Without further ado, Here are ten funny “things” that have happened lately to invoke laughter  and inspire you to be yourself, laugh at yourself and not beat yourself up for making mistakes or being less than perfect:

My husband and I went to NYC with some friends. It was awesome (I would write a travel blog on my adventures, but (a) I do not do well at loading pictures( b) I am not a travel blogger, and you would be asleep by now). …BUT I do like to tell funny stories about traveling so my first 6 funnies will be from this trip:

  1. I did not even blink or bat an eye in confusion when my friend suggested that we visit Alcatraz when we visited the Statue of Liberty.  And I have been to San Fran. So I should know that Alcatraz is not on the East Coast. I was like “OMG LET”S DO THAT!”
  2. It was in the mid 80s (end of September) and even though I checked the weather, I still brought coats, boots and heavy sparkly jeans.  I was hot. I made a hurried purchase at Express for cooler clothes, while the sales clerk sold me tons of stuff I did not need to stay cool for the next 24 hours, then I saw the look of “WTF ARE YOU DOING?” on my husband’s face and returned it all to the same sales clerk who was like “WTF ARE YOU DOING! YOU CRAZY TOURIST?”
  3. I love scones and I love NYC bakeries. Hell, I love bakeries.  I was on a 24/7 mission to eat a scone at every bakery we walked past daily.  And we walked a lot.
  4. I love Falafel.  I kept saying “OMG I have got to get some Falafel from one of the street food vendors.  But I was too full from eating scones every 35.5 seconds.  So I come home form NYC and buy everything to make Falafel.
  5. I bought so many baked goods at a bakery that the New Yorker behind me asked if I was going on a picnic.
  6. I HAD to go running in Central Park just to say “I ran in Central Park!”.  Even though my feet hurt and  it felt like Georgia and I can run in the hot humid sun anytime I want in Georgia, I just had to go running in Central park. I barely made one mile and I was like “WTF ARE WE DOING?                      —————————————————————-Since I have been back from New York, here are funny mishaps:
  7. I left my journal at a pizza joint this week OVERNIGHT before I remembered the next day.  I literally said (when I called to see if it was there) “I hope you guys didn’t sit around reading it.”  Like I am a celebrity or something.
  8. Our orthodontics payment came out as “cash withdrawal” in a far away land and I PANICKED , and most certainly tried to convince the bank operator that someone was siphoning money from our account before she asked “Is there  someone in your house who may have braces?”   ohhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh.   Ok.
  9. I find that when I separate laundry, my categories have changed from the generic, lights, whites and other colors to “extremely smelly and dirty,”to “kind of dirty and smelly too”, “yes indeed, this pile can wait another week”
  10. When I get irritated, frustrated the song “Momma said Knock you Out” (LL COOL J)  pops into my head and I am instantly calmed.  I just hope the Dali Lama approves of this mediation tactic.

Bonus.  I have the windows open and the air conditioning on and our downstairs closet door will not close because it’s full of flip flops and closed-toed-shoes.  October is a confusing month.

 

 

 

*   (apparently I had to make up the word avoid-er ecause the proper noun for a person who avoids things does not exist? or does it?  I googl-ed “noun for avoiding things” and I broke Google. I guess googl-ed is not a word either.  Maybe I should work for Websters and help beam new words from the annals of crazy suburban blogging into being.

 

LITERALLY you can find something bad about EVERY SINGLE FOOD on this earth and guess what !!  it’s mostly on FaceBook!! I literally just saw five comments as to why Greek Yogurt is like “omg toats so bad for you like whatever”  I understand going after sodas, twinkies and pop rocks but..Greek FREAKING YOGURT?

This is just ONE example. Everything is under attack these days. “Bread. Grains. Nut butters. Water. Meats. Cheeses. Eat Bacon. No do not eat Bacon. Yes do. no do not. Plant protein is good. No it is bad. Yes it is good.” 
CHEEZITCRACKERS!! no wonder why people do not want to make an effort to get healthy because “health fanatics” make it so @$!##// complicated!!

Lately people seem to “troll” Facebook to smash someone’s normal view of what’s healthy and its really starting to make my blood boil, so my solution to keeping my blood icey-cold like an ice  vampire-princess is to LET IT GO through writing it OUT.

Here is  My 5 messages to people who troll and food-shame!

1) Be grateful to have food because some people literally do not have a choice.

2) “Don’t go chasing waterfalls, stick with the rivers &^/$ streams people are used too!!” (paraphrase of TLC song) Meaning,  if YOU TRULY want to help people make healthier choices, and you TRULY CARE!  KEEP IT SIMPLE and UPLIFTING!

3) STOP SAYING SUGAR IS BAD FOR YOU. Everything is bad in excess. EVERYTHING. Even healthy foods.

4) STOP PUTTING HAZ-MAT HAZARD SIGNS ON GRAIN PRODUCTS. They are not all bad for you. *

If I were overweight right now (which I was overweight after my bout with anorexia AND according to my insanely skinny OBGYN nurse when I was pregnant  with my first child) , the incessant barrage of scare-tactic-shock-awe articles AND videos of people in poor health,  would drive me right into a box of doughnuts with extra-genetically modified-chromosome-extra-saturated-fat flavored-icing.

5) Stop with the self righteous indignation. People who want to get healthy want to be INSPIRED, not chastised and lectured.

I am just tired of seeing people lean to the extreme lecture tactics under the guise of trying to help people make healthier choices. I personally think there is a huge dichotomy between being too healthy and restrictive and being too indulgent in this nation.  Yes, health is a very serious issue in our nation,  but invoking change comes from inspirational messages speckled with straight-forward-non-controversial suggestions on ways people can implement steps into their daily life to make changes in their health.

*I do not know where I stand on the GMO , Non GMO debate and for my own peace, serenity and well -being of my family, I do the best I can with the knowledge I have obtained on this subject and choose AVOID becoming intellectually embroiled on that subject matter any longer. I absolutely do not want any more information on the subject matter at this particular time in my life*

I am an exercise-bulimic survivor or anorexic survivor. I was labeled as both by the physicians and nutritionist that treated me during this dark time. These old demons come back sometimes subtly, sometimes fiercely. I also have other “isms” but today, for a short moment,  I will focus on this “minion-to-demon” creature that lies on a hammock in my brain.

The ONE truest thing I have learned about nutrition/food is do not believe the hype.  If it’s too “good” or too “bad” to be true, it probably is or is not the truth. The minute I “restrict” some “food” based on the newest “craze”, (I.e breads grains yes EVEN SUGAR!) is the the minute I go stark raving mad and end up eating more than I needed and eating from emotional pain. I would much rather have a peaceful mind than a perfect body.

I know, “What’s up with the dang air quotes Scrappie?” I have to generalize because the amount of examples I could provide would make my ADHD spin and I would spent the next four hours Googling “the dangers x,y & z food” . I simply cannot spiral into a world where I am paralyzed by food choices. Been There, Done That, it’s really a shitty place to rent.

I apologize to all the waitstaff I interrogated about my food preparation or for scaring my Dad for running at 2am, in the streets of Boston. By myself.  an 80 lb crazed lunatic of defenseless, foodless adrenaline. I thank the Guardian angel that silently ran beside me, helping my twisted ankles heal so I could safely return home, each twilight. I am sure I have more amends to make during my boney reign of terror, but the wide eyed looks of bewilderment on waitstaffs’ and my Dad’s faces alike, are painfully clear  to me right now.

I am  irritated with the health and fitness industry for catering how exercise and restrictive eating makes us  “look” versus how it makes us “feel” and HOW it can help our OVERALL MENTAL AND PHYSICAL HEALTH. Of course,  I want to feel good about how I look, but when I see a scantily clad fitness model, butt cheeks hanging out, and flexing with a Carrot Stick in between her teeth captioned “Abs are made in The Kitchen” , it actually makes me nauseous and sad.

I have to rephrase the beginning of the last paragraph. I do not believe you have to practice restrictive eating habits and ‘reedunkulous’ exercise routines to impact your OVERALL MENTAL AND PHYSICAL HEALTH. What I am trying to say is, I’m frustrated with this message that is being sent by some leaders in the health and fitness industry. When I do see this type of message, I try to block it from my social media path and try to block it from my brain.

I LOVE intense cardiovascular exercise. Love it. I love to bike, jog, kick box , dance, bur-pees; all of it, and I could become obsessed with any of it , if I do not keep myself in check. I do not love yoga or strength training but I balance a little bit of everything because I know it’s good for my overall health and yes, I must admit stretching and yoga “stuff” feels good if I am perfectly honest with myself.

“What spurred this blog and where am I going with my story? Food shaming on social media.  Yes, you are darn right I’m oversensitive about being over-informed with which foods are going to turn me into a cocaine addict or how my kids are going to get cancer if I make one wrong decision at the grocery store. (yes I am exaggerating).

I am tired  seeing pictures of a Coke can labeled “Obesity” as a parody to their new marketing campaign, in name of “health promotion”.  I do not want to know about the McDonald’s hamburgers that survived  your latest scientific health experiment.

Clean Eating. Who came up with this term?  So anyone that eats out of a “box” or eats “white” flour or whatever is not grown by your restrictive healthy guidelines is eating “dirty?” or “cheating”?? This truly does not seem like a healthy message to send go anyone ESPECIALLY , young adults, who are very active on social media.

One out of five/seven kids go hungry in the US every day*.  The dichotomy between the health/fitness/diet industry and the poverty levels of Americans who do not have enough to eat, makes my head mushy and steam comes out of my ears. Therefore, to stay in the solution and away from the ‘soapboxbitchfest’,  I am going to leave to links that raise awareness on this issue.** (below)

There are more inspirational ways to reach people who need help in learning how to eat healthy and exercise regularly. Food Shaming and making people feel like shit because they are overweight is not inspirational or motivational. Maybe I am the only one who feels like this , but I can guarantee you if there are any other eating disordered (over-eaters, over- exercisers under-eaters etc) people who see this in their news-feed, I’m guessing they are getting pretty annoyed or even retreating into their disease with the “health-scolding” via social media.

This is my “angriest” blog written to date. I HATE to offend or make people angry or especially hurt people’s feelings. Lately I have realized, I will never  grow as a writer if I am constantly worried about people being angry because they did not like my views.  I am not an angry person, but I am passionate and sometimes its difficult to translate that message perfectly.  I attribute this blog to those writers who have inspired me to be more honest, through their passionate blogs; specifically Baby Sideburns, The Bloggess, Rosie Smartie Pants, We don’t Chew Glass, Drifting through My Open Mind and a girl named Sasha who is always commenting on my blog, and I am embarrassed because I can’t find her blog right now, so if you read this , please please link your blog in the comments!!!

No Kid  Hungry:

http://www.nokidhungry.org/problem/hunger-facts

Women’s Health Feed Run, sent to me from a dear runner friend:

http://run10feed10.com/home/?product_code=WMH01&smartcode=#!/main

Bloggers mentioned above who inspire me:

the Bloggess: http://thebloggess.com/

Baby Sideburns:  http://www.chicagonow.com/baby-sideburns

Rosie Smartie Pants: rosiesmrtiepants.wordpress.com

We Don’t Chew Glass: wedontchewglass.wordpress.com

Drifting through my Open Mind:  http://driftingthrough.com/

 
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a picture. bc pintrest keeps just posting my avatar.
 

I have been struggling to keep up with word press and blogging so I apologize if I haven’t seen comments or read blogs in a while!!

If I had less ——(I can’t think of a word to capitalize on what exactly less of I need to write more..), I could write all day , but then I would have nothing to write about because my life is the antithesis of boring, which I am grateful for in every single way. My point is, I’m hard on myself because I feel “behind” on my writing and book but it simply comes down to a catch-22 situation. I have adhd, OCD which drives my chaotic time management skills but it’s also the catalyst for my creativity.

A therapist once asked me in a session “Scrappie😆, do you think most Moms spray their child’s backpacks down with lysol everyday after school?”.
I have come a long way since my lysol-backpack-spraying-clorox-hoarding days, but I have a long way to go when on comes to truly letting go some of the control-mechanisms that I thought kept me sane for so long.

Yesterday my son said “You complicate answers to yes or no questions and you provide too much information”. He’s nine. I’m 42. He gets my brain which is amazingly wonderful but also undeniably frustrating when I am trying to discipline and set guidelines because he mashes on my buttons like a two year old in an elevator on a high rise.

that’s all I got. disjointed. a mess. unedited. done.

I’m too tired to write a blog so I “screenshotted” my instagram sentiments.
I felt it blog-worthy.
questions below are rhetorical and somewhat facetious. I know chickens don’t eat grass. I know as much as I want to know about the war on GMO and I am NOT looking for a debate or an argument with the Food Babe groupies. I’m looking for balance, serenity, peace and not feel like my families insides are rotting from cancer because I eat yogurt and cheese and my kids eat sugar.

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In a world that screams “be better, faster, stronger, thinner, happier, healthier, smarter, bouncier, boingier, etc”, we become our own worst critic. I believe in change, but not when it threatens the acceptance of who we are at  our core of beautiful personalities, which makes us special, unique, quirky and dynamic.

The most tumultuous battles I fight are with myself are because I’m not measuring up with what “I think” people need me to be doing, saying or being at this very moment.  “PEOPLE PLEASING” is a disease and it can literally kill your soul, your creativity, drive addicts to use again, incite aggression and make people mentally breakdown. I know from experience that when I am not being true to myself and my beliefs and I’m “buying in” to what other people are “selling” (metaphorically and literally) and I am not listening to my gut instincts, I end up in situations of regret and resentment.

Yes, we absolutely need to be considerate, kind and strive to help out our fellows. It is the times when we extend ourselves to others in full self abandonment, we end up on an empty gas tank forgetting to “fill~up” the most important person in the relationship equation, ourselves.  Self ~ Love does not mean becoming a doormat for others and saying “yes” to every request and demand. People who truly love us want us to say “No” or let our voices be heard.  People who thrive on YOUR “people pleasing”, are not loving you, they are using and manipulating you to gain something for themselves.

So why is Funny Lady Scrappie-Momma being so serious? I have been doing a lot of soul~searching, trying to find the real cause of my anxiety. I , like many, suffer from anxiety, depression and “projectile~future~vomiting”. Trust me , its LIGHT YEARS better than it was in my twenties and even thirties.  The truth is, the more peace I feel daily,  the more PEACE I need to feel daily,  and to shut the mental wars in my mind that occur in my brain.  I can create a tornado of distress in the middle of a sunshine filled day if I do not keep the “projectile~future~vomit” “inner voices in check.

I grew up with a lot of chaos. I finally provided a glimpse of my horrendous foster care  and schizophrenic Mom stories with my son and his response was “Wow, Mom you are the most interesting person I know!”..Wow, what a revelation,  rather than feeling shame or trepidation from my roller coaster childhood, I have amazing knowledge, strength and passion I can share my story in hopes to help others overcome barriers to full inner peace. (book!)  For me, when I feel peace, my brain is wired to say “OH SNAP, THIS SHIT ABOUT TO GET REAL, WAIT FOR IT SOMETHING INSANE ABOUT TO POP OFF BRO” (because my inner voice is most definitely a hip hop artist) . The reason my brain is wired like this is because for thirty years, it’s exactly how it happened for me!

In my childhood and through adulthood something “popped off” every one, two, to three years without fail. In a mirage of inconsistency, the one driving constant for me was turbulence.  Foster care, death, suicide,  divorce, alcoholism, anorexia,  etc. etc, either circumstantial or of my own , and at the time I thought, innocuous creations.  After 18, I definitely would subconsciously create sabotage, drama and mayhem because I thrived on burning the candle with a million ends. I use the terms innocuous and subconscious because I had developed my very own PHD from the”auto-pilot-drama” academy, where I was the student, teacher and graduate, completely oblivious to the sabotage I created for myself and to those around me.

In closing, this blog post started out as a Facebook post on my blog page I lose people after 140 characters and it took on a venue of its own.  The only goal I have for myself is to do things that bring me PEACE. I SIMPLY cannot be the Mom trying to outpace other Mom’s in whatever societal race we have created to raise Super Children. I cannot buy into the sensationalistic articles ( if you read them all, which I did for two years as a “health~coach”)  ,after all deductions and conclusions of said reading, I surmise facetiously, Organic Kale is the only food that won’t kill us. As Jim Gaffigan so eloquently stated in his recent stand up Obsessed, “Kale tastes like bitter spinach and hair”, and  after MANY attempts to try and like Kale, I have to agree. I just don’t like kale.

 

 

 

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I recently saw a few blogs on why Facebook is literally causing depression. I get it.   We only show the highlight reel and for someone who may not be having ANY highlight reel to show at this very moment, it is depressing.  Its like the time when my husband brought me  six magazines of “How Celebrities got their  Body back in 2 days After Baby” , after my second child (It truly was honest mistake, really, I told him to grab me celebrity-gossipy-mindless magazines and apparently it was Baby season).

It may be the linked articles to warn people of the dangers of the world that are causing anxiety and depression. Some of them help me; for example, there was one about how to spray my children with vinegar to ward of ticks and  that calmed my bug phobia for about five seconds. There are certain articles that I am very happy to read and there are certain articles I do not  need to be reading because it just feeds  my phobia and anxiety.

Listed below are what goes on behind all my  gleeful pictures.   I’m guilty of only posting the highlight reel on Facebook (or Instagram) because that’s human nature.  Although, I do post pictures of toilet paper rolls and paper towel rolls not on their appropriate rod because we are much too busy of a family to be bothered with all that nonsense.

1) My kids only brush their teeth once a day. I’m working on it, it just is what it is right now.

2) I use real cream and drink real coffee in the morning. GASP.   For me, it’s more than coffee, It’s about memories, the aroma, the greetings to my children as I’m pouring a cup “GET UP NOWWWWWWWWWWWWW!!”, choosing the perfect cup, the sip/slurp sound, the deep breaths, did I already say the aroma?    With the advent of our society fighting obesity (which I think is awesome), people are giving up EVERYTHING but nuts and twigs.  For me,    I HAVE to be in the middle of the road, the clown in the passenger seat in the way back of the tiny car, and on the Wall of Gaylord (see Meet the Fockers) when it comes to just about anything.   (elaboration below)**

3) I do not sit up straight at the computer.  I have improved my posture overall (because it used to be atrocious) but at the computer , when I’m in the zone, like a computer programmer (which I am not AT ALL ,see previous blogs, re computer murderer), I end up slouching , a lot , mostly because I can’t see the screen very well which brings me to …..

4) I really need to be wearing reading glasses because I squint a lot at the computer too; hence the reason why I can’t sit perfectly straight at the perfect distance from the computer.  Like right now, I’m really trying, man.

5) My kids are not voracious readers, writers, athletes, “mathletes”, gymnasts,  or dancers. They play in the soccer league that gives out trophies for showing up and yes I have read the articles about how “awful” some people think giving out trophies to everyone is for a child. Really? that is what you think is awful with our society?  Trust me, my kids face plenty of rejection and obstacles, I am not too worried about “trophy disease” harming their adulthood.    My opinion is PUSHING them   24/7 is only going to backfire.  I do involve them in sports etc, and have them read and write some in the summer, but it is light years away from any kind of Tiger Mom style of parenting, or even in my neighborhood for that matter.

6)   I do not have an elaborate chore system for my children.    I keep it extremely basic. No fancy Pint-rest boards of chores with bedazzled clothes pins and 4-D stickers and mishmashes of crafts that mark their achievements in CHORE-LAND.  I HAVE TRIED WITH CHORE-LAND and almost super-glued myself to the chore chart.  We ended up with a skinny lizard (he goes on hunger strikes)  because of Crafty Chore time.   Right now, I have a sticky note on the fridge that indicates, they can earn one dollar for three basic chores, and one of them is cleaning their room which some people think is ridiculous.  I grew up with way more chores than I personally think should have been placed on a young child, and for the most part, it did not really help prepare me for much of anything other than anxiety about germs.

7)  On the flip side, I’m terrified to let my nine year old ride around the neighborhood with his friends. Most kids my son’s age in are riding their bikes in the neighborhood,  and I do not know where I stand with this right now. I trust him, it’s the cars going 75 miles an hour on a a subdivision strip, I do not trust.  I am NOT judging the moms that allow their kids to do this at ALL. I know it’s my own fears and  trepidations, all I am saying is I am working through this debacle as we speak, right now.

8) I a bit of a “yeller.” Yes, when I get frustrated, especially in the summer, I do yell , maybe at the computer, or at the mess, or even at the kids.  I do not scream, or maybe once or twice ;), but I do raise my voice. I try to get down on their level, but I’m human and I get frustrated and I yell.

9) I can not fix my daughters hair. Giant bows fall out. Braids look like dread locks.  9/10, even if I do get it right , she has it all in her face within an hour.

10) Even though I have a phobia of my house being “clean”, it’s usually fairly messy. My kids are messy.  It’s very strange, the toilets are sparkling, but my house is kind of messy,  compared to images we see on Facebook. I’m guilty , I showed an immaculate picture of my son’s room after I re-organized one fall., Seriously, it stayed like that for five minutes, and then I get frustrated and yes I yell,  because their rooms get messy all, the time, but I don’t give them a trophy  for cleaning their room.

I guess I need to make an more elaborate chore chart for the whole family.

Footnotes:

* I actually try to use with coconut creamer and coconut sugar mixed with regular cream, (I know it’s highly complicated scenario but have you read my blogs? ) to be “more healthy”.

**Articles, blogs & Memes that center on “perfection”,  “No Excuses”,   “Train Lean, Eat Clean”, “ABS are made in the kitchen” ,”Accept nothing less than the BEST”, etc etc,  usually end up hidden in my news feed. I get it, it’s my issue.  I am a recovering anorexic and recovering alcoholic. I simply can not get caught up in feeling like who I am or what I am doing is less than what I should be doing at any given time or I will want to go back to bad habits. I applaud the 18 ab~ pack mom with 75 kids who works out  relentlessly and runs her own MLM business then captions it with a “What’s Your Excuse” Meme, BRAVO, but it does NOTHING to inspire me.