Little Things for Which I am Thankful (yeah, really not so little…)

It was a busy, but wonderful week. I can’t believe it was a week ago that I picked my friend Lisa (Mom to Marathon) up at the airport so she could stay with me and run the Boston Marathon! We had such a great time and even though we started as friends online, 6 years ago, in ways it feels like no time has passed, and in others, it feels like I’ve known her forever. Know what I mean?

So much to be thankful for this week!  If there’s anything you are thankful for, please drop me a comment below!

1. My friend, Lisa, finished the marathon!!! Now, normally this isn’t a big deal. She’s a great runner and has a strong will so if it’s within her power, she will always finish. Last year, however, it wasn’t within her control, due to some a-holes setting off bombs near the finish line.  So, this year she got to run down that wonderful stretch of Boylston that they had stopped her from doing last year. She told me it was one of her slowest marathons ever, but her face hurt from smiling so much. I was sooooo happy for her!

2. I had gotten to the point at work last week where I could just tell I needed time off. Whenever I start to feel like students are “grabbing” at me (for lack of a better word), I know it’s time for me to be out of the office. I mean, being here to answer questions is basically my job, so when I don’t want to do it, I know I am getting burned out. I can’t think of a better way to have spent those few days out of the office than with a good friend. We went to Castle Island down in South Boston, right on the water, on Tuesday. It was a gorgeous, sunny day. We took little Osito with us and of course, we were stopped by many children and adults alike on the way, who kept cooing over her and her cuteness. 🙂 I mean, she was in her summer dress – how could you not?? (Laugh if you will, I love that little girl and she totally doesn’t mind being dressed up.)

3. This was the week I decided to train for a marathon this fall. My second. I’m a bit nervous about my body being able to take all of the stress of the pounding, so I’m going to really pay attention to it along the way. I’m thankful for all the support I’ve received from everyone since deciding to go for it again. I’m especially grateful for having such a wonderful brother who has agreed to be my coach and put together a program for me.

4. I am thankful for having found a brand of sneaker called Hoka One One. Without them, I thought I would be relegated to no longer running races of even 5 miles. Thanks to them, I have felt so much less back pain this week and even been able to run a few days in a row. They have so much cushioning that they have been able to absorb a lot of the pounding for me. Wish me luck for the 5-6 miles I will be logging tomorrow. For right now, it’s my longest distance I’ve run in a while. It will soon be eclipsed.

5. I am so so so so thankful for my chiropractor. He’s given me such great advice and exercises to use and I am feeling the difference every day. I used to feel like my body was that of an 80 year old woman with the constant back pain. I no longer feel that way.

6. My mom got engaged this past week. I’m really happy for her. The guy she is with now is really great and treats her with such respect and admiration. It’s clear he is really in love with her. She deserves to be happy.

7. A photo is worth a thousands words! Tookie, the cat in the picture below, was my foster baby for about 7 months. His mom just sent this picture to me this week – the dog, Po, is now Tookie’s bestest, bestest, bestest friend in the world! Clearly, Po feels the same way about him as he’s letting  Tookie eat his food!  I am not sure Tookie would have been put up for adoption out of the shelter due to his elimination habits, so I felt so happy when I saw this photo and know that his mom is still totally committed to him, quirks and all.

Tookie, my former foster baby!!! (He's the cat, by the way.)
Tookie, my former foster baby!!! (He’s the cat, by the way.)

Little Things for Which I am Thankful: Learning to Accept

My predictable...but I love them!
My boys….so predictable…but I love them!

Or should I say, the theme for this post is learning to accept.  (I’ll get to the point after taking a very short tangent below about this weekend.)

It’s going to be a very busy weekend with my friend Lisa who is also known as Mom to Marathon coming into town to run the Boston Marathon this Monday. If  you know of her, you know she was stopped on Boylston Street last year. Thankfully, she ran with her phone and we were able to find each other. Personally, I think she was going on adrenaline most of that day because she was still “going, going, going” later on that night, even though after running all that way she still did a ton of walking with me since the T was shut down and cabs were pretty hard to come by.

I’m grateful for my learning how to accept a few things this week, or at least learning how to accept dealing with certain things.   I’m going to forego the usual list for today, and just write about what I’m grateful for–I hope no one minds.

You may know that I take anti-depressants. I have for the past 3.5 years since my divorce. They have greatly helped me out and I admit, when I started taking them, I thought that they would be a temporary part of my life. You take them, you work through them, you wean yourself off of them, and then you’re all back to “normal.” However, once you have had a depressive episode in life, you are considered 50% more likely to have another one. And if you have had two depressive episodes in your life, your odds increase to something like 85%. I’m in that second category as I know now that I was must have been clinically depressed as a teenager. So, I should stay on them as maintenance medication.

Earlier this week, I mentioned to someone how I thought about still taking them. She suggested I look at them as the same as someone who takes high blood pressure medication, or medication for a hyper thyroid. It’s something that person has to take to keep them functioning biologically correctly and efficiently. The difference between the two is the stigma that gets attached to anything dealing with depression or problems of the mind.

So, I’m learning to accept that I may be on them for a good portion of my life. But that’s ok, because honestly, I like who I am as a person now, more than I ever have before. I’m so much more comfortable with my life. The few times I have tried to cut down by one pill or so, for some reason, I just haven’t felt “right.” So I will be sticking with the plan of medication.

I have also come to realize that most likely my tiny house will be an RV, and most probably, a motor home. This doesn’t mean that I am giving up on the dream of a tiny home. It just means the form of the tiny home will be something manufactured. But I will make it my “own” don’t you worry. The reason I say this is because the cost of tiny homes when made by someone other than yourself, just seem to be skyrocketing as they catch on with more popularity. Because I would be a single woman traveling, a motor home just makes sense for a number of reasons: safety, not having to hitch and unhitch every time I travel anywhere, and also because of my animals. Having a travel trailer would require me to need the help of a second person to hitch up, and also my animals would have to travel in carriers in a car. I already know one wouldn’t make it out of town before puking or peeing himself in his carrier. It just wouldn’t be pretty.  My plan is to not move around all the time like a “snowbird” because God knows, I would need a job! And I would likely keep it in one place most of the time. But it would be nice to know that if I did travel someplace for the weekend, I could take my whole “fur family” right along with me.

And before you mention it, yes, I know those things are hard to drive around in all the time. That’s why I would probably buy a scooter, which if I had to tow behind the motor home, is much easier to attach than say, a full-fledged car. And, they are much more efficient on gas, thereby saving me money.

Since accepting this is probably my path to tiny living, I have felt a sense of relief, honestly. I don’t like dealing with, or I should say, I don’t do well dealing with, uncertainty. I have tried to “control” it by feeding it with information, but someone suggested that I just acknowledge the fact that uncertainty to me sometimes brings anxiety,  and think about ways to satisfy that anxiety.  (Feeding it information is one of those ways of satisfying it.)  So now, the focus is on the word “satisfy” rather than “control”. It has a  much better connotation, don’t you agree?

Anyway, I’m sure I will have a lot more to write about next week after the Marathon on Monday, complete with pics of elite runners, I hope. (Did I mention that I live on the route?? It’s SO convenient!) Have a great weekend, everyone!