Clearing the dust

I may not have accomplished everything I had hoped to this weekend, but I did enough that I feel good about it. Got some walking in, and a bit of cleaning.

While I was cleaning, I recognized a big flaw in how I’m managing the things I decide to keep vs. throw away. While trying to sort/organize all the bins in my craft room, I came across a sticker somebody gave me *20* years ago. Alongside it, I found pictures of friends I haven’t spoken to in almost as long. While some of them were cool people who I wouldn’t mind knowing how they’re doing these days, none of them are really consequential to my life at this point. Even if they remembered me (which is a big if – it seems I only remember them when I’m taking a trip down memory cleaning-time lane) they would be completely different people now – just as I am. Why have I been holding onto these momentos of a time in my life that doesn’t matter?

My inner hoarder was screaming at me as I did so, but I threw a bunch of that stuff away. Picture of me & the guy who took me on a road trip and LEFT me without transportation/a way home in Canada? Trash. Index file ID card for my 7th grade buddy who moved away ages ago? (no idea how/why I got ahold of the rolodex from the office, but hey…) Trash. So many other memories that just make me think too much about things that don’t matter? All trash. While I probably could have thrown away a lot more (I kept the 20 year old sticker – what can I say, I like stickers) I think clearing out things I thought I needed to keep is a big step in de-cluttering my life, and preventing any hoarder tendencies from further developing. (Bonus point: Found a lot of really cool stuff for my vision board!)

I feel like this is a good place for me to be right now – slowly moving through and discarding the muck of my past, and looking forward to making new and better memories in the future. Onward!

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New beginnings

For many people, a new year is a great time to reflect on what’s been happening in your life, and make changes. The theory is that if we start fresh, we can leave the past behind and make this year a better year than the previous one. The problem with resolutions is there is too much pressure – what if we don’t meet our goals? What if we let ourselves down, and have an even worse year than the last?

One big scary thing for me in the new year is a brand new insurance plan. This might not seem scary to most folks, and I recognize that my anxiety is most likely unnecessary. The new plan means I get to choose a new doctor. In this case, the doctor is a lot closer to our house, so that is a HUGE plus. I also know if the new doctor doesn’t work out, there’s a whole big network out there to choose from. The scary part comes from my struggles with my health over the years, and taking all of those struggles, and putting them in front of a new face and saying “here, my last 5 years of turmoil, try to make sense of it” and then hoping the new doctor will be as helpful as the last. I have so many prescriptions to transfer, medical records to transfer, not to mention I have tons of paperwork that needs to be filled out. It’s a little daunting. I know from experience that this will not be as horrible as I fear, but I can’t seem to brush off the anxiety. It reminds me of the first day of school – every year, you may be excited to see all your friends again, but that frog in your throat when you put on your brand new school clothes, put your brand new supplies in your backpack and get on the bus… that is how ALL change feels to me. New, scary, exciting.

Today, I took the first step and made the appointment to see my new doctor, and get all of my records and prescriptions transferred. It was not very scary, just talking to the receptionist. I even called the eye doctor for my follow-up, since I was on a roll. These are simple things for most people, but even using the phone gives me a ton of anxiety.

I feel good about stepping up and getting these things out of the way. When I got off work, I mixed up a new batch of my Splenda-ized banana bread, and here I am feeling like I’ve climbed a mountain of success for the day.

I know I didn’t have to wait until a new year to make changes, but it feels like the right time. So much is already different this year, and I feel like it will be easier to keep myself on track so long as I keep posting here, being accountable to myself, and finding more excitement in my journey than anxiety.


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Uh… poppin’ tags?

As part of my “resolution” (I hesitate to use the word, as most people don’t stick to resolutions – it’s more of a journey) I wanted to start getting out of the house more. Since I work from home, I’m always here, and it’s easy to forget there’s a world out there full of interesting things to see and do and window shop for. Since we’re on a limited income with my hubby in school, retail therapy has been kind of out of the question. So, I decided this weekend would be bargain shopping time.

I don’t always find something when I go to the thrift store – so much of it is just nothing I’d need or ever use/enjoy. Nevertheless, it is fun to browse around and “window shop,” which fills my need for “retail therapy” even if I don’t buy something. This is very handy for so many reasons.

First, I’m getting out of the house. I hate to admit it, but I have literally gone a week or more without leaving the house at times. Anything that gets me out of the house is already better than sitting on my duff.

Second, I’m getting in some exercise. You may not think of shopping as exercise, but when all you do is sit around for most of your life, walking around the thrift store can be a sport! Lifting/bending/etc. and even just walking around, being mobile… it’s something that I don’t want to lose the ability to do, and so I feel this is a really important step.

Third, there is always the possibility of finding some really cool stuff. Whether it’s something we want to keep, gift, or re-sell, I love finding unique treasures. I always feel like certain items were placed there for me, and I’m just drawn to them.

For example, yesterday’s thrift store trip yielded this really awesome “pirate” chest – complete with whiskey decanters and shot glasses. Whoa. I had never seen anything like this. Apparently, they were made in Japan in the 70’s. I found evidence of several different variations on the interwebs (without the shot glasses, or with the shot glasses on either side instead of in front of the decanters). I was SO stoked. I love treasure chest type boxes and this one is pretty amazing.


Today’s trek involved several stops, and one pretty nice find. 15″ Vermont Teddy Bear “Mama’s Boy” — these little guys retail for $80, and ebay for $40+ even without the clothing. The only thing this guy needs is for his clothes to be washed up a bit, and his sunglasses are missing. I’m not sure yet if he will be a keep/gift/sell. Either way, I’m enjoying finding bargains, and the possibility of making a few bucks from my thrift store crawl.

I was pretty stoked about this find, but I feel today’s overall accomplishment was all the walking. We found several thrift/bargain shops and stopped at a couple. One was pretty huge, and PACKED with all kinds of junk. Pretty literally, most of it was just junk. Huge bins filled with power cords, remotes, controllers, etc. Tools, dishes, all kinds of weird knick knacks… several guitars and other instruments. There were also some really cool things, like pewter dragons and unicorns, and a kick ass sword. Nothing was really labeled, and the owner is Korean – her English isn’t all that great so it was hard to try and make a deal. We decided to pass on anything for now, but when we have a few more bucks we may go back again.

It was nice just to be out. I’m kind of embarrassed really, to admit that just leaving the house is an accomplishment. But it’s a step in the right direction. I’m trying to pull myself out of this dark cloud and see the beautiful scenery beyond.

My theme for the new year is “To live like a normal human being” – may sound weird, but nothing in my life feels normal. I stay up late doing absolutely nothing, I have a hard time sleeping, I never leave the house, I don’t eat at any normal times (which is horrible for my blood glucose/diabetes) and I have found myself being very forgetful. The past year just flew by and I hardly felt like I even lived it. I am trying to focus more on positive thinking, because even when times suck, I believe the balance of life will bring us the good bits when we’re most in need.

Signing off for now. I hope to talk more about my goals soon. I think putting them out into the world will help me achieve them more easily. J


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