Ready, Set, Reset! (Or not- That’s Ok)

2019! 🎉🎉🎉

Does that number sound bizarre? For me, it sounds like a “Jetsons” era year. So,  where are the flying cars? 😂

Actually, I’m excited for a new year. 2018 was incredibly challenging for me, emotionally and physically. I said goodbye to a lot of friends in Guam, moved to California, dealt with months of unemployment, experienced a sudden loss in our family, learned I have fibromyalgia,  and spent the last few months wondering if I had breast cancer. Two biopsies later, I found out that I am cancer free (the questionable area was an overgrowth of cells). Thank God!

Learning the news that I didn’t have cancer made me feel as if I’d been handed a golden ticket.  Like I was told, “here is a free pass to do whatever you want.” My resolutions aren’t necessarily resolutions,  but more about the choices I make. I’m not wasting time any more on frivolous things or worrying about issues I have no control over changing.  I’m not letting toxic energy from other people dampen how I feel or what I choose to do.

For instance:

1. Revisiting a Dream. I’m a singer, and not to brag, but I’m pretty decent at it. I spent years in musical theater, sang for special events, and have taught several students over the years. As I’ve gotten older,  I let the idea go that I’d ever get to record or appear on Broadway. However- when I saw that THE VOICE is auditioning singers in San Francisco, I signed up without  hesitation.  Why not? If I don’t try now,  then when? What’s a dream you’ve let go of? Maybe revisit it this year? Or maybe the dream accomplishment looks differently now?

2. Make a Passion My Work. Definitely the toughest struggle of being a military spouse is the constant changing of jobs every few years. I left a job teaching theater in Guam that I LOVED and I’ll admit that I mourned that loss pretty heavily. It’s hard to let go of something you’re passionate about. Looking back over this year, I know one of the reasons why I struggled with finding work is because I was chasing positions “I would be good at,” versus “what I’d be happy to do.” That being said, sometimes you have to do what you need to do to get by (and we’ve all been there and done that!). Being a theater professional definitely has taught me how to make my own opportunities. So, I signed up with a service (Musika) to match me with prospective voice students, and at my new job as a Youth Programs Instructor (!), I introduced my background to my supervisor, who was excited about the experience I have with performing arts. So- it may be possible I’ll get a job from the job I have! Do you have experience, skill, or a passion that could work for you? How could you implement it into what you currently do? Or how can you start a side gig? 

3. Find Alternative Ways to Exercise.  One of the most frustrating aspects of chronic pain is getting fit without making the pain worse. I have a double whammy of sciatica and fibromyalgia, which on some days I feel fine,  but once a flare happens, I can barely get around without pain. However, I am determined to be strong, feel confident, and be healthy.  I started doing more yoga based exercise,  Ballet Barre (which my dancer’s heart loves!), and looking at other body weight exercise. It’s not about being a particular weight or size for me anymore. It’s about how I feel and manage the pain easier.   Start easy. Listening to the body is important.  Celebrate your progress; don’t compare yourself to others.  

And yeah…

If you don’t feel like a “reset,” that’s ok too! 

Maybe you’re fine with what you have going on.  Or maybe you’re not ready to make changes.  It doesn’t matter. Sometimes the beginning of a new year can feel like pressure to change your life. Truth is, we can change it at any time.

So if you’re hitting the reset button, awesome! If not, that’s cool too!

Here’s hoping 2019 is a great one for all of us.

Looking forward to the flying cars!

Love, laughter, and lipstick (My new tagline!),

Melanie.

 

 

Phrases I Hate

“Act your age.” “Ladies don’t act like that.” Those two phrases were ones I dreaded hearing when I was growing up.  I never truly understood what they meant, but now I am older, the context of those words make me cringe and upset. Why?

Because we direct them at girls. We expect them to mature faster and be quieter, more “ladylike” in demeanor. Their enthusiastic energy gets toned down, their “tomboyish” attitudes and activities looked at as something weird, or a “phase.”

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There’s a famous saying, “Well behaved women seldom make history.” To me, it means not being quiet when people are hurting.  To not accept poor treatment. To rise above expectations. To DO YOUR OWN THING, regardless of age.  I am in my mid 40s and still like amusement parks. I listen to everything from Rihanna to Skrillex and jazz too. Wearing crazy leggings makes me happy, and yes- my hubby is 12 years my junior. Some people might think I haven’t “grown up,” but on the contrary, I’m growing in experiences. If we stop trying new things, taking risks, or sharing an opinion, then you have stopped experiencing life.

So, to my fellow “ladies” out there: Stop apologizing for your ideas. Don’t second guess yourself.  Trust your instincts. Say what you mean.  Be brave and DO YOU!

Until next time,

Love, laughter and shoes-

xoxo, Melanie.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Change of Season = Change of Mind

Hello lovelies,

Believe it or not, fall is almost here (though in Guam, it just means a little less rain!). Like many of you, I enjoy checking out all the September issues of Vogue, Marie Claire, and Glamour. Seeing the runway shows on YouTube is as close as most of us will get to being at a show, and I’m glad for that technology!

But I want to share with you something I’ve been dealing with lately.

 

Dress, Kenzie.

Dress, Kenzie.

For the last few weeks, I’ve been feeling very sluggish and dealing with low energy. At first I chalked it up to an inconsistent sleep schedule, so even after going to bed/getting up at regular hours, I still felt draggy and lacking motivation.

Kenzie 1

Was I depressed? I didn’t think so. Though I’ve been missing friends and family, my job and my husband bring me joy. I had to look at something else.

I’m neglecting my body.

Shoes, Just Fab.

Shoes, Just Fab.

Don’t get me wrong. I am still very much about body acceptance. I believe in loving who you are, right at this moment. I still love who I am, and my curves. However, I cannot deny that my body needs more exercise, more greens. I don’t need to be a certain size to be happy. I just want more energy. I also don’t want to be diagnosed with diabetes, which is a reality for someone who is overweight.

So, I am taking this a step at a time. No crazy diet or intense workouts here.

Kenzie 3

But I’m still rocking my outfits, no matter what! I believe in living loud, so what’s louder than red?

Love, laughter, and shoes-

xoxo, Melanie.

Go With the Flow

Moving to a new area is exciting, a little scary, and…yes, frustrating. Even in a paradise like Guam, I have had moments where I just wanted some familiarity.  The Hubby and I are in our new home, but it isn’t “home” yet. Our furniture, pictures, favorite games, convenient kitchen gadgets, etc. are still en route to us, and it could possibly take another month for these things to arrive. Trying to find where to get resume’ paper, a hose for the tub (these things are not in the same place!) and spending an afternoon driving around to find these is a bit challenging. Thank God for the beach!

Beautiful and lonely.

Beautiful and lonely.

A couple of days ago, I was really struggling with loneliness. The time difference between here and Michigan is 14 hours, so pretty much the two times of day I can call home is early in the morning, or late at night. Not exactly the most convenient times.

Wish my family could enjoy this with me.

Wish my family could enjoy this with me.

There is the saying, “this too shall pass.” Belongings will arrive, new friends will be made, and I’ll be a whiz at finding bargains.

Until then, I’ll just soak up the sun and go with the flow.

Fringe beach 2

Fringe beach 4

I love fringe, but hate it when a snag happens!

I love fringe, but hate it when a snag happens!

Kimono by Primark, tee by Calvin Klein.

Kimono by Primark, tee by Calvin Klein.

Until next time, lovelies!

Love, laughter, and shoes-

xx Melanie.