Yoging

Today’s Positive Note: I am strong, smart, beautiful, and worthy.  My body does not define me.  I have lots of valuable things to offer the world and I can and will use my talents to make my environment a better place.  I am making a promise to talk nicely to myself and to others.

I shall be starting a new type of daily note at the beginning of my posts tomorrow, since it’s a new month and I’m running out of nice things to say about myself.

Yoging: (noun) refers to any adventure in which yoga and running are dually involved. 

I may or may not have just made that word up, but it’s the best way to describe my adventures today!

But first, some pictures of the oatmeal chocolate chip peanut butter cookies I made last night.  I got the recipe from Tasty KitchenThe Pioneer Woman will never, ever fail me.  Thanks PW!

All ready to bake!

I find baking to be very soothing.  It’s just so rhythmic and even.  And tasty.

All done!  These babies were very chewy and flavorful, and I love when you can taste the cinnamon in a cookie.  I have a confession, though: I thought I had butter, so when I went to the store I didn’t get any.  I came back, discovered I didn’t have any, and was not about to venture back out in the ten degree bitter cold.  Solution? 1 cup of vanilla yogurt.  I’m not lying.  Both the consistency of the cookie and its taste are totally fine — excellent, even.  I don’t know if this will work for all recipes, but it sure worked here.

Okay, onto my yoging.  I thought about running first thing this morning.  I even had my outfit all laid out:

Yep, it was that cold.  I ended up going later in the day so I didn’t need quite that much clothing, but still…

So.  My cousin recommended that I try out the 12:15 donation class at Shala Yoga Studio.  I already knew my cousin was brilliant because she has about eleven degrees including a phD and she’s now doing a post-doc (which is higher than a phD  — who knew such a thing was possible?), but I did not know she was this brilliant.  She told me the class is usually not very full, but get this: I was the only person there.  And I paid $3 (I wasn’t trying to be stingy, that’s all I had).  So basically, I just got an amazing private 90 minute vinyasa class in a beautiful studio with a fabulous teacher for $3.  In Manhattan.  I am not making this up.  I have photographic evidence.

Yes, that happened.  If you’re a New Yorker and you don’t check this class and/or this studio out, you just might be committing a sin.  Although I’m not sure they have sins in yoga.  Well, you’ll be maligning your chakras, I can tell you that.

Here’s where the yoging part comes in.  Before heading to the studio on the train, I sneakily planned out a running route from the studio, around lower Manhattan, and back up the West Side to my dorm.  I needed to get in ten miles, but I had to do some guesstimating.  I left straight from the studio (which is near Union Square, in case you were wondering), jogged down 12th street (forgetting that West 4th street intersects with 12th street and getting horribly confused), and over to the river.  I knew from the start that my little leggies were very tired.  I kind of felt like how Murphy looked this morning.  The yoga class had actually been a bit intense, with lots of warriors, chaturangas, and balancing poses.  So I decided that today just wasn’t going to be a speedy run, it was going to be a getting-the-miles-in run.  My miles probably averaged out around eleven minutes each.  Slow, but steady (okay, not really, I was super exhausted in the last three).  I also had not had enough water in the morning at all and went through about four bottles during the run and ended up feeling over-hydrated.  Ick.  But I made it, eventually, and I’m pretty sure I did closer to eleven miles.  I am actually kind of excited to rest tomorrow.

Came back and had some cereal and this tasty little sandwich.  Okay, so maybe it doesn’t look tasty, but it was.  Promise.  PB and apple slices on my new bread, all heated up in the microwave.

I was super wiped after my four hour yoging adventure, so I took a little well-deserved nap.

Okay, so I haven’t done much “writing” writing on the blog lately, so it’s storytime!

Storytime: My Beautiful Sister.

There are probably hundreds of ways to describe how my sister and I exist together – as foreign bodies, as two moons on a shared path, as strangers who have suddenly found themselves alone on the earth and in desperate need of love.  But I think, mostly, we are any two things that are so disparate as to be practically the same.  A friend, Molly, once told me that you couldn’t have love without hate or hate without love.  That they each presumed the other’s existence – I was 12 and did not believe her, but now I know about people better.  My relationship with my sister has nothing to do with hatred, I am just trying to illustrate how sometimes, opposite things are intertwined.  Our names say it best: Caronae means the seashore; Darya means the sea (as it fades into the distance).  I’m constantly digging under her.  She’s always whispering away from me.  She is gentle, I am harder.

The day I came home from the hospital, all wrapped up in my mother’s arms, she made my infant self a special offer: she had created a cozy little nest in her favorite tree, an ash tree, in the front yard, and I was welcome to sleep there tonight – this was November in northern Michigan.  My parents, thankfully, did not take her up on this offer.  For the longest time, I saw her suggestion as mean and spiting.  But she wanted to give me a nest – baby birds live in nests.  Maybe I was a little baby bird friend for her.

When I was about 8 and Darya was about 12, we had a little accident with the toaster.  Our parents, notoriously stuck in the 70’s when it came to household appliances, had a non-functional TV and this dangerously old toaster.  We didn’t grow up with many electronic things.  So, my sister and I were home alone one morning trying to make ourselves some waffles (probably eggo cinnamon toast or chocolate chip, our shared favorites).  This is something we did with success fairly regularly, but this time, some of the wires in the toaster started sparking, and before we knew it, the whole thing was up in flames, and then the wooden cabinets beneath which it sat halfway on fire too.  And we were terrified.  I don’t remember the details of that day very well at all, but I do know this: my 12 year old sister insisted that I wait in the front yard.  She was trying to save me while she fought the fire herself.

I used to think her matted, curly hair was weird (she did cut it eventually), her friends were weird, her beliefs, even.  But these are the things that make Darya.  She has worn down pages of the Bible, I have stacks of running shoes and normal clothing.  So, yes, we are terribly different.  But I still have dreams in which she dies, and I never ever fall back asleep afterwards.  I never ever will unlearn how beautifully wild she is.  Like me, in a way.

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Saturday Shenanigans

Today’s Positive Note: I have a strong stomach (I mean my abs, not my digestive abilities).  It may not be perfect, but it really helps when I’m running, especially up hills, and I do work hard to keep them strong.  I’ll share an ab routine that I do at some point…

Today was a lovely little Saturday.  In fact, I would deem it pretty close to perfect.  Woke up at 8:30, layed in bed until 9:00 musing about life, got up and made some oatmeal (I won’t lie, I honestly love the kashi packets and find them much easier than stovetop oats), read blogs and checked email until 10:30, got dressed and walked down to The Lite Choice for my tour.  I was contacted a few weeks ago by the director of operations asking if I might like to take a tour.  I like ice cream products of all varieties.  I like dessert.  I like free things.  Why not?

When I got there, I saw a little poster thingy from Missy with a healthy living tip.  I think it’s a nice idea that they are trying to promote healthy habits among their customers.

They told me about their business, their history (warning, really nerdy fact ahead: this was one of my favorite parts), and their “frozen dessert.”  It doesn’t have enough fat to be considered ice cream, but it doesn’t have the healthy bacteria requisite to be deemed frozen yogurt.  This might be one of my critiques actually — if I am going to indulge in a nice tasty dessert, why not throw some healthy probiotics in there as well?  It is made from real milk though, which they get from Upstate New York.  I love all things local (ish), so I appreciated this.

The owners were really sweet and let me try lots of flavors!

New York Cheesecake, I think.

Double chocolate truffle, one of my favorites.

Peanut butter.  Holy yum!

Peanuts and almonds that they grind right into the “frozen dessert.”  I would have been happy just eating the nut butters plain. 🙂

Lots of topping choices.

More flavors (I had a spoonful or two of each one).  The only one I tried that I explicitly didn’t like was the banana.  It tasted fake, which was a bit surprising since all their flavorings are made from real fruits ( they come out of a syrup-like bottle, but they are not artificial).  This was perhaps my favorite aspect of their whole product-model: pretty much everything is real.  I don’t mind eating real milk, sugar, butter, eggs, etc.  I just don’t want to ingest a bunch of chemicals.  Their “frozen dessert” was nice and thick and creamy, which is definitely something I look for, as a frozen yogurt conneiseur of sorts.  They’re also mostly about 100 calories for a small serving (without toppings, of course), which is nice.

Overall, I think that TLC seems like a really nice place for a pretty tasty dessert.  I didn’t so much appreciate the businessy-ness (I can make up words if I want) of the place, but I don’t think that the average customer would experience that.  Also, I am the least business-minded person ever.  I like words and art and history and countries, not companies and money-making.  But with that said, everyone in this world has to make a living some way, and I’m glad that these people are doing so with a yummy, natural, organic product.  

FYI — I know that “natural” and “organic” are vague terms that mean different things to different people.  Why can’t these just be nationally standardized?  I think a lot of times people end up confused, thinking that if a product is “natural” it is automatically healthy.  And that word is not really regulated anyway, and seems like it could be slapped onto anything.  Sorry, mini rant over. 

So I had a fun little morning tour!  They gave me some coupons (thanks TLC if you’re reading this), and just seemed like a genuinely kind, real company.  If you are looking for a treat and you’re in the New York area, check them out!

Let’s see.  After this I ran errands.  I stopped by this amazing little bakery on my way home, and then the bank to make deposits.  At the bakery I got a loaf of whole wheat raisin walnut bread.  Absolutely perfect.  I’m surprised that I restrained myself from eating the entire thing warm before I even made it out the door.  I did a little bit of reading and made some lunch.  My camera battery died by this point which seriously annoyed me because I had the most adorable lunch ever!   It consisted of a small egg and cheddar sandwich made on my new bread (if you’ve never made a savory sammy on a sweet bread, try it!) and a giant heap of carrots with TJ’s pb (like everyone has been saying lately, this stuff really is quite tasty).  And dried pineapple.

After lunch I spent some quality time with my Middle Eastern history books.

I have a highlighting problem, okay.

I love pretty book covers!  Yay.

Then I chatted with my mommy, who was in the middle of seeing a patient.  My bad.  My parents are both doctors, which means they’re busy busy busy.  Being a doctor really is not the glamorous lifestyle that has become so entrenched in the American imagination, at least from my point of view.  I had a lovely little nap after that (I seem to be having a really good day today???), woke up, was pensive again, read more.  Went to the gym and did five miles on the treadmill.  Okay, so what follows is the only mildly disconcerting moment of my day.

My school gym has this extraordinarily OBNOXIOUS policy of cardio machine sign-ups whereby you get one 30-minute slot once a day.  Yeah right.  Sometimes, 30 minutes just isn’t gonna cut it, especially when I’m training for a race and I need an hour or more on the treadmill because it’s about two degrees outside.  And to top things off, there aren’t really enough machines, so a lot of times  you have to sign up 30-90 minutes before you want to get on and then you sit around and wait.  Ugh.  So today I got there and, typically, no treddy was open for 45 minutes.  I stalled by slowly changing in the locker room and wasted 15 minutes.  Once I got out there, I noticed that the person for the 5:30 slot wasn’t on one of the treadmills, so I snagged it.  Thankfully they never came, but this was pure luck.  Of course, now I was on the wrong machine and when the person came for the next slot I had to stop, move my stuff, and go to the original machine that I had.  I finished my run (which by the way, was perfectly pleasant) and was cooling down when the guy came for the next session.  Okay, no problem, I was done BUT technically I still had the machine for another 30 minutes (I had illicitly signed up for a one hour block, as many gym goers do).  I told him this and he said “well, that’s against the rules so I crossed your name off and you absolutely do not get to stay on any longer and it’s automatically my turn.”  I was done and hate being in arguments,  so I just got off and was annoyed for about two minutes.  I’ve had similar experiences before too.  So, notice to Columbia’s gym: please change your machine sign-up policy and your stupid time limit.  And while you’re at it, get more machines.  And resolutionaries, please only continue to make the gym crowded if you solemnly swear that you will work out faithfully for the entire year.

This picture is from a few days ago, but you get the idea.  Too crowded.  Ewww.  Perhaps I’m being a wee bit harsh.  Sorry.

Earlier today, Mari left a comment saying there was an NYC bloggie meetup tonight.  I emailed her to ask where it was, but it probably had already started or something.  Alas, I am sure there will be future meetups!  So I made some dinner instead.  Leftover peanut veggie soup, to which I added tofu and a yummy spinach/mesculin salad. 

I love my giant heaps of green.  I need them in my life.  I used Annie’s Goddess dressing, which I hated the first time I tried it, but it has been steadily growing on me!

More reading (I made it through ONE book toady.  Kill me now) and dessert:

Half of this bottle of blueberry pommegranate yogurt from Ronnybrook.  I should probably just become a Ronnybrook spokeswoman or something.  Milk, I love you.  Ronnybrook Farms, I love you even more.

And now I am blogging.  I plan on venturing out into the cold for some chocolate chips so that I can bake (I just really feel the baking urge for some reason), and possibly doing a wee bit more reading.   Tomorrow will include a 10 miler if it is above 15 degrees and, hopefully, some free yoga.  I hope everyone had as happy a Saturday as I did!

~Caronae

PS: I did receive coupons from TLC, but going on the tour and writing about it was most definitely not a paid gig.  I did it because I am a foodie living in NYC who is always on the lookout for tasty treats.

Sleepy Friday

Today’s Positive Note: I’m always open to learning and trying new things!  As long as an experience doesn’t involve sheelfish or bees (I’m allergic), I’ll be open-minded about trying it.

Nothing much special happening today, except that I hung out with a boy.  A real, live one yes.  And a nice one at that 🙂

I was exhausted for some reason all day today.  I came home from work and took a long nap.  I think between classes, work, studying, and training, I get quite exhausted during the week, and by the time Friday rolls around I just want to curl up in my bed with a book and some cocoa and go to bed.  Does anyone else experience this?

I’m looking for potential jobs and/or internships for this summer.  I absolutely hate this process — I find it stressful, overwhelming, and confusing.  And I have no idea what I even want to do in life, let alone what I want to do this summer.  Gah.

Fun eats:

Okay, so I planned on having this salad for lunch:

Layers of mesculin, spinach, bell peppers, carrots, pineapple and tofu!

So pretty!

BUT, I decided I didn’t want it for lunch and had two bowls of cereal and some trail mix for lunch (around 3:00?  I don’t know what was going on with my sleep/hunger).  I am officially super impressed with the TJ’s cereal because it kept me full from 3:00 until after 11:00, when I finally got around to eating the salad (and I wasn’t starving either).  AND I did a 6 mile run and ab workout around 6:00.  Weird.

I snacked on this earlier in the afternoon:

Before adding trail mix.

And now it’s a banana hammock per CCV!  Yum.  And by the way, calling it a banana hammock does make it more fun to eat.

The run was kind of blah:

1:00-10:00 6 mph

10:00-20:00 6.5 mph

20:00-30:00 7.0 mph

30:00-40:00 6.7 mph

40:00-50:00 6.5 mph

50:00-55:00 6.0 mph

I actually only did 5.9 miles, because someone else came to take the ‘mill, but I’ll just add on an extra tenth or two tomorrow.  I actually got up this morning and tried to run outside, but was frozen, so I gave up and came back in.  I made it about a tenth of mile, realized my flimsy clothes were not enough, and that unless I suddenly morphed into a polar bear, running outdoors was not happening today (props if you live in New York and you did make it out).  The wind was fierce!

Went to watch part of our school’s basketball game after running (we got trounced) and then hung out with the boy.  Fun evening!

Weekend plans inlcude a The Lite Choice tour tomorrow (a comment on Missy’s blog hooked me up!)  and loads of reading.  For some reason, all of my textbooks are really long, really dense, and really slow this semester.  If you’re a student, how are your classes going?  If not, do you miss reading for hours and hours over the weekend (haha, kidding)?

Sorry, no stories or writing bits tonight!  I’m off to go relax.

What are your weekend plans?

PS — Congrats to my sister who got into grad school today without even taking the GRE’s because she’s so insanely smart!!!!!

Don’t Be Creepy.

Today’s Positive Note: I’m very flexible, in the physical sense.  I would say this is the only physical “categorie” in which I would rate myself as unusually talented.  Even as a gymnast (I was a gymnast from when I was 4 until I was 14!), I was more flexible than the other girls.  I used to be able to reach 14-15 inches past my toes, and I can still easily do the splits and weird bendy yoga poses.

Not running yesterday made me really anxious for some reason, which made me have trouble sleeping again!  I have tried melatonin, and I actually have abottle of it, it just makes me sleep for a long time, so if I have to be up early or I don’t think I really need it, I don’t usually take it.  Thanks for all the tips though guys!

Anyways, ran after work today.  I was planning on running to and from Central Park and doing the full loop, which would have been around 7.5 miles.  I was also planning on going to Trader Joe’s later tonight.  So then I had the brilliant idea of combining the run and the trip to the store!  I actually love doing runs where the run leads to some sort of mini adventure; it keeps me entertained.  I’ll run wo Whole Foods (or TJ’s, per tonight), a yoga class, an event in a park, etc.  It’s like getting a little reward after the run.  So I ended up doing ~7 miles, with 10 pick-ups of varying speed and length throughout (by the way, I hate the word fartlek and try to avoid using it at all costs.  It just sounds evil).  I felt really good throughout the run, and even charged up a few of the rolling hills in CP.

How do you guys make runs entertaining for yourself?  How do you change things up, in general, with your workouts?

I had OIAJ this morning, with one packet of kashi honey cinnamon and a pear.  Warm apples and pears are super fabulous, by the way :).  So yummy, I wish I had a jar with a tablespoon of pb or ab left in it everyday!  By the way, I reeeaaaalllly wanted to get the TJ’s peanut butter or almond butter with flax, as shown by Monica in this post, but couldn’t find it.  Sad.  By the way, who came up with the OIAJ idea?


TJ’s finds:

I loved the savoriness of the dark chocolate edamame (tried a few pieces as a snack).

My shoes match my cereal.  Seriously, so well.  My shoes might as well be renamed the “Mizuno pommegranate-blueberry alchemy.”

I have seen dried pineapple plenty of times on Meghann’s blog before and wanted to give it a go myself.  This was an excellent choice!

Why is avocado, cheddar, and hummus such a tasty combination?  I had just such a sandwich on whole wheat for lunch, and it was so wonderful.  And filling.  I didn’t even want my afternoon snack of a Mojo bar, but I ate it anyway, because I kenw I’d be hungry during my run otherwise.  Running makes my hunger really weird.  Sometimes I feel super full and hardly want food at all, and sometimes I am just ravenous.  Thoughts?

I’ve noticed that most poems/short prose pieces I write tend toward the creepy side.  This, perhaps, sounds strange, but I think it’s kind of natural, in a way.  Expressing everyday things in a slightly unusual and/or darker way seems to give them a totally new tone.  I don’t necessarily do it intentionally, but I do do it regularly.  It doesn’t help that my poetry/prose teacher is OBSESSED with the creep in writing.  Honestly, I think it’s really satisfying to take something mundane (like dancing) and make it…odd.  Maybe I am odd for doing so?  For example, a few days ago I wrote a short prose piece (really, I think it was a poem just smashed into prose — I’m still trying to figure out how they are different, for me) about dancing, and it was going to be happy.  I swear.  But then I started thinking about my body, and how bodies moving around in the dark are both beautiful and terrifying, and how really truly scary it is to learn the nuances of your own body.  And, just like that, it became creepy.  Do you write creepily?  If not, how would you chracterize your writing (if, of course, you write at all)?  I find that the blog is a really nice way for me to keep up with writing on a regular basis, even if it’s just about food.

Alright, I’m in my comfy clothes and going to make dinner (which may or may not involve my new cereal) and watch Bones. 

Sleep and Soup

Today’s Positive Note: I really like my hips.  It sounds kind of weird to say that out loud, but it’s true.  They’re not dainty, and I like them that way.  I think they have enough curve to be feminine without just being large.  Also, odd fact, I really like my hip bones.

I’ve always kind of had issues with insomnia, and, like most of my minor physical dilemmas, it appears most often during times of stress.  Transitioning between home (Michigan) and school (New York) is by no means difficult for me — I’m quite used to it by now — but there remains something stressful about it.  I can’t quite name it.  It’s almost a very deep, visceral physical reaction.  Like my body knows something that my mind doesn’t, which I actually find quite impressive.  Anyways.  Dear sleep, please come back soon.  Love, Caronae.

Speaking of sleep, it’s my reason (excuse?) for not running today.  Monday was strength, yesterday was four miles, and today was supposed to be a six mile fartlek.  But, after falling asleep during all my classes today, stumbling around campus in a sleepy stupor, and barely having the energy to cook my dinner, I knew it wasn’t gonna happen.  I thought about getting up to do it this morning, but I had only slept for five hours.  My goal is to do (some of) my mountains of reading tonight, do a little yoga for some movement, and go to bed early.  Not following my training plan exactly kinda makes me anxious, but I think I’m doing the right thing (I was supposed to have a rest day later this week, so I’m really just moving things around a bit).

Mountains of reading.  That’s about half of my textbooks for the semester.

One of my professors made a very bizarre, slightly irritating comment in class today.  We were looking at some texts that were early proponents of some form of human rights (think Hobbes, Locke, Kant), and she started explaining this theory of rights in which our ability to make rational, purposeful decisions makes us human, and therefore gives us human rights.  Sounds simple enough, but there’s one obvious flaw: mentally handicapped people who are unable to make their own decisions.  Okay, I’m still with her.  Then she says “and depressed people.  With everybody popping pills these days and being unable to make decisions, that’s another kind of mental handicap.”  I found this very strange.  I’m depressed, not irrational, thank you very much.  And the whole class laughed at this comment too.  Was this a joke that went way over my head?

My mom sent me a package yesterday!  Mostly it was just books, but she also threw in some Pyrex!  Just what I needed (previously, I had to use a pot as a mixing bowl when baking).  Thanks mommy, I love you!

Does getting excited about new bowls make me a nerd?

I’ve been eating lots of yummy healthy things lately to fuel me through my exhaustion.  I don’t think I’ve been eating enough (last night, as I was trying desperately to fall asleep, I decided to add up my approximate calories for the day in my head.  I think it was only 1600.  I actually felt sort of weak, so I got up to eat some cereal.  Much better).

Homemade spicy carrot-squash-peanut-broccoli soup.  Not the greatest, but not half bad for throwing a bunch of random things into a pot.

Butternut squash soup with spinach and toast broiled with goat cheese.  Is it wrong that I like things burnt?

This was dinner tonight: I made the lemongrass chili Thai Kitchen instant noodles and added my own tofu (baked with red pepper, honey, and ginger), bell pepper, and spinach.  I love the little nooks and crannies in the tofu, they soaked up the broth and the flavors wonderfully.  I guess I’m kind of on a soup kick lately?  I’m craving something sweet right now (which always happens after dinner!) so I might go get some frozen yogurt later.  Yum.

Tomorrow is my last day of class for the week!  Happy happy joy joy.

Do you ever have trouble falling asleep?  What helps?

What’s your favorite kind of soup?

Lastly, head on over to Diana’s bake sale for Haiti and bid on something.  I’m baking banana chocolate chip walnut bread, so feel free to bid on that, or anything else!

I’m A Busy Bee

Today’s Positive Note: I’m an individual!  I like to think of everything from my hair to my jewelry to my personality as uniquely mine.  what makes you uniquely you?

No full post tonight!  Too much school work to do.  Grrr.  But I’ll be back with a recap tomorrow, and lots of fun pictures and the details of my semi-succesful carrot peanut soup adventures 🙂

Have a great Wednesday, and make sure to take some time for yourself (I know I say that a lot, but it’s so important!)

Caronae

Edited To Add:  Today’s the day! It’s Diana’s Bake Sale for Haiti and I’m baking some tasty banana/walnut/chocolate chip bread for the highest bidder.  Go bid and support such a good cause!

Therapy Mondays!

Today’s Positive Note: I’m honest.  Sometimes to a fault, actually.  I can’t stand lying or witnessing people lie or just general dishonesty.  Although I try not to judge others’ choices.

Today was a rest (ish) day.  I did 30 minutes of yoga and 20 minutes of strength training from Gina’s Intro to Iron Pumping.  I did the shoulders, chest, and triceps workout, with ab moves in between most of her move.  I was seaty and shaky by the end!  Definitely a good, quick strength workout.

I was really proud of myself for making up my own flows for yoga.  I just did it on the mats at the gym (ew), but it still felt like a nice little yoga practice.  I was happy about it.  And I didn’t fall on my face during side crow!

I definitely have to remind myself to do my own thing during yoga pretty often.  I need to focus on what I’m doing and the current moment.  I tend to get very easily wound up.

Eats: nothing interesting except dinner (besides some yummy frozen yogurt in the afternoon…).  A version of yesterday’s open faced sammie, this time with hummus, roasted veggies, and cheddar, a side salad with avocado, and a pile of cottage cheese.  For some reason  I really wanted cottage cheese with dinner, so I went with it.

Broiled cheddar is very yummy, I have discovered.

Anyways, you guys know what today is. Therapy Monday!

I probably cried harder today than I have in months.  I wasn’t even unhappy — I went in intending to tell my therapist about the nice guy I met, and how much fun I let myself have over the weekend.  But somewhere along the road, that got lost.  I almost always end up talking about my family (whom I love more than anything in this world).  We are — how shall I say this — a little bit messed up, I guess?  Apparently, I am not responsible for other people’s happiness.  I think I have probably talked about this with my therapist before, but it didn’t really sink in until today.  It doesn’t matter how close someone is to me — a best friend, a sister, a coworker (fyi, those are purely random examples; I’m not implicating anybody) — they are in charge of their own happiness.  I do not need to ensure that they are happy!  What a novel revelation.  What I do need to ensure is that I am happy.  This seems obvious, but for someone who spent YEARS thinking that unhappiness was meant to be a part of everyday life, it’s a big thing to grasp.  It’s definitely something that I’ve been trying to tackle in small ways: for example, taking myself out for a cookie or calling an old friend or trying a new style of poetry.  It’s a conscious effort, but so far I’m enjoying it 🙂

It was a little bit jarring to go in thinking I was going to be talking about one thing and to go down a slightly more painful road once I got there.  It’s funny how things just sort of come up out of us; sometimes I don’t feel like I have control over what’s going to come out of me in therapy.  For the most part, this is quite a good thing and keeps me on my toes.  This is kind of a really gross analogy, but once during high school when my best friend (who is also a writer) was going through some difficult moments, she wrote a poem in which she realized that everything was suddenly coming out at once, like vomit.  Yeah.  I don’t really know how else to explain it.

But at the same time that everything is spewing out of me, I also feel a very distinct happiness: how joyful that I have had so many experiences and known so many people in my life.  I have a lot of memories.  Not all of them lyrical or soft, but interesting, nonetheless.  I’m not messed up, I just think I have more things to uncover than most people.

I shall leave you guys there for now.

Have a good Tuesday!

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