Saturday, July 25, 2015

I think I want a do over.

I recently started reading "Do Over" by Jon Acuff.  This is coming to me at such a great time.  I don't have kids' activities to run around for.  I don't have a spouse who expects meals on the table at a specific time.  My time is my own.  And I really want to take advantage of this season in my life to pursue a lifelong hobby.

I'm not going to spell out the book word for word.  But it explains that as kids, we knew we had the power to yell "Do over!" and we'd try again.  Why can't we do that still as an adult?  If you want to read this book when I'm done with it, let me know!

The good news is it's never too late to declare a Do Over. [Jon Acuff, "Do Over", page 19]
I also recently joined a really positive group on Facebook called "30 Days of Hustle."  It's more than 14,000 people who are 'hustling' towards a goal.  Their goals are anything from learning sign language so they can communicate with their deaf toddler to learning a new skill that makes them more marketable in their careers.  They spend their free time learning these skills for a purpose.  And I've joined them.

I've always enjoyed writing and have decided to learn more about freelance writing.  My hopes are that I can improve my writing to a point where I'm earning some extra money doing it.  My initial financial goal is to save 3-6 months of living expenses (Dave Ramsey's Baby Step #3).  But ultimately I want to be contributing more to my retirement (Dave Ramsey's Baby Step #4); I just feel like I've been lax on this up to now and I don't want to struggle to survive in retirement.

My HUGE goal is to replace my current income with my own freelance writing career.  I don't expect that to happen the day after tomorrow.  But I'm willing to work at it for a few years.  I want to know if I can own my own business and survive at that.  But even if I don't ever feel comfortable living off that income alone, it should be an excellent side business to help me save up for specific things that are important to me.

So if you know anyone that has a website that needs a blog... If you know anyone who needs a website with excellent content to drive customers to their site... If you know anyone who needs articles or editing or any other writing support, pass on my name... or pass their names on to me.  I'm willing to take them on as a client to build my writing repertoire.

Friday, July 24, 2015

I like coconut frosting.

I've had a relatively bad day.  Sure it could have been a lot worse.  But heck, I was only going to the office for four hours and then running a few errands.  It should have been a GREAT day.  So what the heck happened?!

I spent all day Monday working on this data analysis project.  To be honest, I've spent WEEKS working on this data analysis project.  Hours upon hours!  But this was to be the last day (or so I thought) that I'd be dealing with this data analysis project.  I was scheduled to teach ERP Tuesday through Thursday.  But my data analysis project bled over into my ERP training time.  Shocker!  My fellow instructor hates it when things like that happen and they seem to happen every time I'm scheduled to teach.  And he makes me feel bad for it every time, like it's my fault that I'm over-extended at work.  But that's not my point.  My point is, I worked 12 hours Monday and ten hours both Tuesday and Wednesday.  I worked exactly eight hours on Thursday.  And the plan was to go into work for four hours today to finish a few things that I wanted to clear from my desk that I didn't get the chance to do all week.

First, I had several classes to add to the Master Schedule.  It's not important what that is, but it is important that I needed an NMCI PC to get it done.  I have one sitting on my desk now... but for whatever reason, it won't allow me to update the Master Schedule.  I tried all kinds of things to make it work.  Still no luck.  Very frustrating.  I swear I must have rebooted that thing a dozen times.

So I stuck with processing course evaluations.  It's a boring way to spend four hours in the office, but it has to get done and no one does them but me.  So I did them.  They're done now.  All seven of them.  "Yea, me," she says with mock enthusiasm.

I expected my short, but productive day to feel good.  It didn't.  I was frustrated and bordering on angry all morning.  I couldn't wait to get out of there and get on with my personal errands that were sure to improve my day.

So I drove the interstate to Washington, listening to contemporary Christian music that I could sing along with.  I had plans to deposit my check, make a payment on my dwindling medical bills, get my hair cut, and get another gel manicure.  Lucky for me, my stops to the Credit Union and the Hospital went as planned.  But that's where the joy ended.  I don't like my haircut; it's too short and spiky.  And I don't like my manicure; she got polish on my fingers and it's not all that shiny and even.  What a waste of time and money.  But it doesn't stop there!  I went through the drive-thru at Long John Silvers to grab lunch.  And wouldn't you know it, as I was pulling out of their parking lot, I spilled the entire box of food onto the floorboard of my car.  What the heck was that all about?

I'm telling you, I couldn't wait to get home and just surround myself with bubble wrap and something lovely in my oil infuser.

And then I saw it.  The last piece of coconut cake.  Actually, I think it might be a white cake, but it had coconut frosting.  I ate it!  And I loved it!  I didn't drop it.  I didn't get any on me.  It didn't make me sick.  None of those things.  It was just lovely.  The absolute best part of my day!

Sunday, July 19, 2015

Blue Skies for Two Months Straight

It's been two months.  Two full months since my last depressive episode.  I LOVE that!  I can't tell you how good that feels.  And honestly, May 19th seems like more than two months ago.  The difference between how I feel today compared to the way I felt on May 19th is hard for me to even quantify.

On a scale of one to ten, May 19th was a one; today is a ten.

Yeah, polar opposites.

I don't know that I've been doing anything in particular to maintain this emotional stability.  But I'm going to keep doing what I've been doing to try and stay right here.  Light right here emotionally, is pretty darn good.

Remembering where I was a year ago doesn't even bring me to tears anymore.  I'm doing that well.  And I'm oh-so-appreciative, oh-so-blessed.

Lord, thank You for the break from the depression.  I humbly ask for another two months.