a girl and her boy

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Tag Archives: challenges

There is no try.

Round two.

Okay. I wasn’t done. Remember that fear I mentioned? Well, it got the better of me and I stopped writing before I got to what I really wanted to say and what I was really feeling.

I am going to stop looking for ways out, for back doors, for escape routes.

And that’s what I’m *really* tired of. My habit of looking for a reason ahead of time why something won’t work so I can shrug my shoulders and say, “I tried. But….”

No more BUTS. No more TRIED.

That’s the circle, the cycle, I’ve been stuck in.

Anytime I find something that really has the power to change me for the better, I RUN from it. And I know why, I have a whole history of explanations, but I’m so tired of it ruling my life.

It’s my life.

The old habits got me here. They won’t get me out. Time for new ones.

I already overhauled a lot of my life this last year. And I should nod to the HUGE changes and progress I’ve made. It’s time to do some fine tuning now.


On the Bright Side

It’s often hard to focus on the good in the world, especially when our own lives are full of challenges and the news fixates on the troublesome and shocking. Fortunately, there are some sources out there for finding out what’s going well in the world and to gain some strength and inspiration from it.

Some of my favorite places to go for positive news and inspiration:

Daily Good:  Each day they focus on a person or event, attach an inspirational quote, and a suggestion on how you can harness the positivity in your own life. I used these articles as daily writing prompts in the classroom.

Happy News:  This one is new to me but looks good!

Help Others:  A place to gain inspiration on how to be a positive force in the world.

The Foundation for a Better Life:  Focuses on value education, inspiration, and positive action.

Something to Think About

The most beautiful people we have known are those who have known defeat, known suffering, known struggle, known loss, and have found their way out of the depths. These persons have an appreciation, a sensitivity and an understanding of life that fills them with compassion, gentleness, and a deep loving concern. Beautiful people do not just happen.

Elisabeth Kubler-Ross

Words of Wisdom

After months of silence, I’m rather talkative. I came across the following words that struck a chord in me and I wanted to share them:

I love those who can smile in trouble, who can gather strength from distress, and grow brave by reflection. ‘Tis the business of little minds to shrink, but they whose heart is firm, and whose conscience approves their conduct, will pursue their principles unto death.

Leonardo da Vinci

I feel strong, but tired. I feel confident, but worried. I will conquer these challenges, but I don’t know how. I will survive and become better and wiser from these challenges. It will just take time and patience and diligence.

The Refiner's Fire

“I do believe that when we face challenges in life that are far beyond our own power, it’s an opportunity to build on our faith, inner strength, and courage. I’ve learned that how we face challenges plays a big role in the outcome of them.”

—Sasha Azevedo (b. 1978); actress, athlete, model

Living in Hope

“The very least you can do in your life is to figure out what you hope for. And the most you can do is live inside that hope. Not admire it from a distance but live right in it, under its roof.”

—Barbara Kingsolver (b. 1955); author, writer

Recent Developments

As you can imagine, a lot of changes have been happening in the space between this and last post; most of the changes were happening within.

I’m not going into the details of the separation or why I chose to move on, but I will tell you this:  it was the best decision I have ever made. I feel free. I feel alive. I’m beginning to live the life I always wanted to but couldn’t because of the rut my relationship was in for years.

In the last month I got back on the road running and biking (and dropped 17 lbs.), I kicked my professional life up a few notches, became a road warrior after buying a car,  cut and highlighted my hair, and bought a few new things for my wardrobe. Yes, perhaps a little too much for the wallet in the recession, but I still have plenty of money to pay my bills and I plan on getting a second job with all this free time that opened up for me. I am not a new woman, I am the woman I always meant to be but haven’t been.

Some of the big things coming around the corner for me are getting a new teaching job and moving (hopefully out of Maine) and when my finances are settled and recovered I’m going to get a dog. Not just any dog though, a gorgeous Weimaraner.



I’ve always wanted one but my ex didn’t. Phooey on him! I don’t have to worry about his thoughts on the matter any more! I’ve loved Weims for as long as I can remember and they are the perfect breed for my active lifestyle. We’ll keep eachother outside and enjoying life! 🙂

That’s all for now. I just wanted to give everyone a head’s up on what I’ve been up to. I’ll do a more in-depth report of some of my shenanigans soon. 🙂

The Shoulder Saga Continues

Today another chapter in the shoulder saga has been written. My dear, wonderful, charismatic, great fisherman, and helluva guy chiropractor did what he could to help with the shoulder after my PCP and (dumb-ass) orthopedic surgeon gave him the green light. He supported the weight of my arm and rolled my arm all over its axis, which just happens to be the location of the injury. At one point while rolling it around, he “adjusts” the ball of the shoulder in the socket to try and return normal motion and/or to loosen scar tissue. Well, all I know is that a big ol’ can of pain was opened and I was in tears and biting my finger clean off. Poor guy. He probably feels bad. But it’s not his fault. My shoulder was pretty messed up to begin with. When there’s not a whole lot right with something, it takes a lot of pain (ha!) and effort to fix it.

Here I am, four hours later, and it still hurts like hell. Is this what physical therapy will make it feel like? If so, oh man. It’s time for another bottle of vodka.

Due to a huge flare up of this injury, I’m in a sling, popping ibuprofen, and as of tonight, not running or knitting until further notice (well, maybe just running, I think I can sneak in some knitting somehow). Damn it. Just when I was getting on a roll with both.

Well, it’s a good thing I have a back-log of books to read. And grading. And planning.

Oh, speaking of school stuff, parent-teacher conferences are on Thursday. Wish me luck. Depending on who else signs up, I just might need it.

Striking Out

I have one strike left and this week will be counted among the worst weeks I’ve had in a while. School is going fine; it’s the after school stuff that is frustrating right now.

I have been wanting to take yoga classes since I was a freshman in college. I was always too shy to do so, though, because of various insecurities. So I never did. I’ve thought about yoga, read up on stances and practices, and have dreamed about being a yoga-master. In August, I read that one of the local adult education programs is offering a beginner’s yoga class. Great! thought I and I sent in the registration form immediately. I waited for six weeks for the class, bought my mat and block, and began reading up on some of the beginning stances to get ready for class. Two weeks ago I drove to the neighboring town for the first class, waited in the room for twenty minutes wondering what was going on since no one else showed up, and then went to the adult ed office. Come to find out, the class had been postponed for two weeks because their minimum enrollment had not been met. They waited to see if anyone else would sign up. Yesterday, I got home from work all excited after a very long day (staff meeting and then an SAT Prep Training organization meeting – more on this soon!) knowing that after my stressful day I’d be going off to yoga to relax, meditate and get some exercise. WRONG. I called to be sure the class was on and this time it was cancelled and I was told my refund is in the mail. What a major let down. I’m really bummed about it.

And then today was a good day at school. No big meetings, no major behavior problems with the students, no major failures with lessons. It was a good day. And I was looking forward to a good visit to an orthopedic surgeon I’d been waiting to see for a month, no, correct that, five years.

Back in 2003 I fell and hurt my shoulder, and this is after a history of dislocations. I saw a doctor, got x-rays and a MRI, began therapy, was told I needed surgery, and then lost my insurance. I’ve been waiting five years for resolution on this issue. Every day for five years, my shoulder has been achey, if not outright painful. I have limited motion and use. Sometimes I’ll pick up a medium-sized hard cover book and I’ll get shooting pain and I’ll be incapacitated for a few days. Running makes it ache something fierce.

I was looking to the surgeon to offer me relief in the form of knowledge of the issue and a plan for care. Instead, I got incredulous looks when I said I dislocated it three times growing up (didn’t see any supporting damage on the five-year-old x-rays), and was told that the tear was teeny and the previous surgeon’s suggestion to get it operated on right was jumping the gun a little. He essentially told me that he couldn’t do anything for me and to kindly leave so he could go to his meeting he was late for because he saw me 45 minutes late (I was there 20 minutes early).

So, I’m totally okay with the surgeon being honest with me about the situation. That’s his job. But not offering any suggestions on courses to take for resolution, rushing me in and out in about 10 minutes, and not asking questions about the effects of this injury on my activities and other probing questions made me feel like he didn’t see any need for me to be there and that I was wasting his time. He made me feel like I was lying about my previous injuries and care. He made me feel like there was no hope of ever having full use of my arm again.

Let me repeat, it’s been five years since I could reach for a glass in a cupboard at eye level without pain, on the days that I’m able to do so.

I’m very frustrated. I’m very hurt. I’m very let down.

This appointment was a gateway for me. I’ve been channeling all my pain towards this day, saying that once I see the surgeon I’ll get better, I’ll be fixed. And not having that right now really hurts.

Everything comes in threes. What will strike three be?

Houston, we have a problem.

So, I lost fancy sock one, and then found it two days later. I thought that would be the extent of my worries with this pair of socks once I got the hang of the pattern. But now, I have quite the problem. I’m nearly out of yarn and I have 14 rows of the foot pattern left, 6 rows of St st, and then 30 rows of the slowly decreased toe. I think I can make it to about the tenth row of the toe before I’m completely out. I’m already working with the extra bit I pulled out of the skein to make the stripes match up. And this is where I am getting my numbers from. In a panic, I even calculated how many stitches I would be knitting per row and counted them up and then compared that to how many stitches I knit with this patch of color previously in the sock. I think I have about 28 rows at 70 stitches to work with before I’m completely out. As it is, I’ll have two color sections back to back which will be quite noticeable.

I poured out my knitting basket and culled through for some fiber that might be used to finish this sock. I found one that is slightly thicker, but spun looser so when twisted tighter it matches, but it’s a cool ash grey versus the warm greys in the sock. Argh. Good thing all these issues are occurring at the part of the sock that will be covered by the shoe. I couldn’t imagine what I’d do if this pattern was toe-up. I shudder to think of it.

Poor Allan will have one very well done sock and one sock that is completely visually unpalatable. Some pair of fancy socks. I’ll have to give it another go with a larger quantity of fiber when I can get nerved up for it. I want Allan to have a nice pair of really fancy socks, not a mutilated, ho-bo version.