Inspiration


Restoring to Factory Default Settings

Today I sold my last piece of furniture.

Last night I sold my bedroom set. Two weeks ago I sold my couch and a book shelf. Two weeks before that I sold 2 TVs, 2 bedside tables, a leather chair, a storage bench, 4 lamps, another bookshelf and this really cool alarm thing that simulates a sunrise so that you don’t have to wake up in the dark. Four weeks before that I had a temper tantrum themed yard sale and sold every spatula, picture frame, coffee cup, pillow, pair of shorts… everything every THING that I had. Two months before that I sold a bed frame. But that was because I had found out Romeo/David had slept with Erin Black in that bed, and I made him buy us a new one.

Maybe that counts as the same type “everything must go” tantrum.

Maybe it doesn’t.

But today the last piece of furniture- the last item I had that couldn’t just fit in the back of my Corolla, take two rights and go straight on ’till morning- walked out the front door for $225.

I’m not going to lie- I panicked a little bit.

Wait, no, if I’m not going to lie- I panicked a lot.

I’ve been counting down to this moment for 11 weeks. How could I get rid of everything? How could I unload the memories and recoup the cash and make it not my problem anymore? How could I find the freedom that I was SURE would come once it was all just out of my face? How could I untether myself from a 5 bedroom house worth of stuff that I had been collecting for the better part of the last decade with the belief that “well sooner than later I’ll be married, with a bigger house, and we’ll have kids, so I’ll need this Calphalon pan set/ Dyson vacuum/ suede sectional couch/ 52″ TV as an investment in my future.”

I had the house. I had the stuff. I even had the paper doll “husband” to match.

I also had panic attacks that I would never be enough to make him happy. I had medication induced nightmares and weeks without sleep and 4:00am debates with myself about which was worse. I had what can only be described as toddler level meltdowns because I could never cook the spinach the way he liked it which bothered me infinitely more than it bothered him. I had eerie, unfounded fits of anxiety that he had one foot out the door- those turned out to be right though.

I can only describe it as an out of body experience when you realize that you thought owning 800 thread count sheets could save you from the other shoe dropping. And it drops anyways as you sit in bed on these beautiful sheets and read the Facebook message that would send you down the rabbit hole and don’t know if you feel more betrayed by the lies the sheets told you or the lies the paper doll told you.

So here I am on the eve of my 32nd birthday.

Feeling the least excited about my birthday that I’ve felt since my parents bought themselves a new car for my 16th birthday. (No, they did not keep the old one for me. They traded it in. Showed up at my 16th birthday party in a new car… for themselves. All my friends started jumping up and down in excitement “for me.” Two days passed before I realized they weren’t playing a joke on me. If you ever wondered where all this deep seated dysfunction comes from, remember those are the people that raised me. Parenting Tip: You have roughly 6,570 days of raising your child. Buy a new car for yourself on literally any other day. Good talk.)

I digress.

Here I am on the eve of my 32nd birthday.

I launched my new professional organizing business today. It’s doing well so far. And I don’t know if it’ll be enough to put food on the table.

I should be getting final close out money from David this week. And it’s exactly enough to pay off the last of my remaining debt.

I accidentally died my hair dark lilac. And it should wash out before the end of the month and back closer to my natural color.

I own exactly 17 shirts, 8 dresses, 4 skirts, 8 pairs of pants, 11 pairs of shoes, and some makeup. Oh and a juicer that I just really love. And that’s literally it. And I don’t have a lease or a mortgage.

I have no less than 30 In Case of Emergency friends that I could and would call about a flat tire at 3:00am and know without a doubt they would be there. And every one of those people has their own In Case of Emergency that they would call before me.

I will see 1 of the 4 members of my family for a “Thanksgiving celebration” that we already promised will most likely be gumbo and wine. And I don’t have to see all of the other family members that I generally spend weeks working up anxiety about “how will the holidays go this time?”

I don’t have a partner that loves me and will wake me up to pancakes with a candle in it while singing happy birthday. And I don’t have a paper doll.

I don’t say all of this because I hope to throw a pity party en lieu of a birthday party. In fact, some of these things are pretty damn wonderful. (I’m looking at you Nordstrom credit card- don’t let the door hit ya’ where the good Lord split ya’!)

I say all of this because today when I watched that dresser pull away from the driveway and just hours later launched my website, I realized that like it or not, I have achieved a full factory reset. Two years ago- to the day- I started this blog and it was all about teaching, adventures and misadventures in love, dysfunctional family, and a halfhearted attempt at finding myself during a heartbreak.

And now…

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Eat, Pray, Fabio 2

When I was 6 years old, I ran away from home. I decided that the pressures of my impending 1st grade year were going to just be too much on top of being a big sister, and really I just had had enough of the tyrannical rule of my parents. No, I will not eat my peas, and I’ll show you who’s running the show around here, Mom– if that’s even your real name. 

I decided that I wasn’t going to be rash about this process, so I began to pack the essentials and prepare for life on the road:

  • Copies of Eloise, Madeline, and Rosie Runs Away… check
  • Extra wind shorts, tie dye t-shirt, and scrunchie… check
  • A handful of change from the laundry room coin jar… check
  • A box of Saltine crackers… A sleeve of Saltine crackers… after much debate with my mother who told me I couldn’t leave her house with her food, I managed to finally convince her that my blood would be on her hands if she left me alone to my personal skills to acquire food, so we settled on one sleeve and a few packets of mustard… check

When I was 6 years old, I was infinitely more prepared to run away from home than I am now at 31 when I have run away to Italy. My friend Nicole offered me a place to stay with her for two weeks, and without putting much though into it, I booked a ticket and 8 days later hopped on a flight.

  • Preparing international phone plan… oops
  • Researching basic Italian phrases… oops
  • Deciding where in Italy I wanted to visit… oops
  • Packing a bag large enough to fit everything I wanted to bring… oops
  • Arranging transportation to and from the airport… oops
  • Remembering to tell my mom I was leaving the country… oops
  • Getting the address of where I would be staying in Lucca… oops
  • Sexy black dress, new lacy bra and panty set, and heels for our weekend to Rome… check. Priorities, y’all.

So here I am now, after 36 hours of travel that included three hours of shameless crying while reading Love, Warrior by Glennon Doyle Melton on my first flight, two crying fits in the Madrid airport that were mostly due to exhaustion but also because I couldn’t stop seeing Romeo everywhere, and one missed bus stop that resulted in a full evening of repeatedly traversing a busy road with two weeks worth of luggage by myself while trying to find WiFi so I could connect with Nicole and get directions to her place. All of which are full stories unto themselves but will have to wait until another time.

Italy has always been at the very top of my Travel Bucket List and for the last 2.5ish years, Romeo had deposited money in a “Travel Fund” as my birthday/ Christmas/ anniversary/ Valentines present and would put money in there with the promise that as soon as we had enough, he would take me to Europe for my very first time. When we broke up and Nicole extended this incredibly generous offer, it felt like God placing a first step for healing in my hands and reminding me that our lives don’t stop when we are heartbroken; our lives usually begin in these moments if we let them.

Plus if it was good enough for Elizabeth Gilbert, it’s for sure good enough for me.

And I’m not going to lie. There was a little bit of a “I’ll be damned if I wait one more day for a man to follow through on a promise for anything and I’m taking my happy ass to do exactly what I want to do. Men? We don’t need no stinkin’ men.”

But then Nicole told me about Fabio, the painfully sexy man who works at the meat market downstairs from her loft and speaks just enough English to say things like “you’re too beautiful for a heart that is broke” and “here is more wine, my love” and “this dress make me crazy.”

You can’t make this stuff up.

I’ve still got my broken heart chastity belt on, but maybe the bra burning man hating side of me that was simmering below the surface can give it a rest now. After all, it’s a new bra with matching panties and that would be just an absolute waste.

Ciao for now.


Sharks Can’t Go Back to Bathtubs and Other Love Advice 9

As I mentioned in my post last week, I went to dinner with Not The One. I had the purest of intentions of showing up, being platonic friends, catching up, and going our different ways at the end of the night.

Turns out being just friends will never be in the cards for us. (more…)


The Evolution of My Spring Breaks and Wet T-Shirt Contests 5

Rejected titles for this post include:

  • This is Thirty
  • Stay Home Moms and Vodka Chuggers Deserve More Respect
  • Where is Sex and The City: Season 7 When You Need It?

For Spring Break my senior year of college, thirty or so friends of mine and I went on a six day booze cruise through the Caribbean. It was full of the typical Spring Break fanfare – smuggling alcohol onto the ship, excessive amounts hot tub make-outs, drinking mystery booze from a man with a whistle, half naked dancing on beaches, and I’m pretty sure I made out with someone in order to get shots at what I later found out was an open bar beach party.

I’m nothing if not classy. (more…)


…Of Fucking Course You Do… 9

I met a guy. Not just any ol’ guy: in the midst of this heart-wrenching break up, I met a great guy. He’s so handsome. He’s got these dark green eyes and the kind of smile that you notice halfway across the bar. He’s got a great job and great arms. I know because I found every excuse possible to touch them all night long. He’s hilarious and smart and is totally into me too. He’s tall. In fact he’s a solid three inches taller than Romeo. (more…)


Lord, Beer Me Strength 1

See the clip of the original scene here. (Also, watch that gif enough times and you might start to have a seizure. My God. Scroll down right now. SAVE YOURSELF!!!!)

I need a little break from writing about the heart stomping that has been the last three weeks of my life, so I’m temporarily removing myself from my present reality and indulging in a good, old-fashioned #FlashbackFriday. (more…)


Break-Up Side Effect #2: The Sad 3

Winston Churchill referred to it as the black dog. Will Wheaton referred to it as a loud room. Allie Bosh referred to it as a soul decaying boredom. For me, it’s The Sad. (more…)


Break-Up Side Effect #1: Humiliation 12

New Relationship Smugness is a real thing, y’all.

According to Urban Dictionary- New Relationship Smugness (NRS)
A very common overwhelming emotion by new couples experienced within the first 1 – 6 months of their relationship. They are poisoned by their own happiness and led to believe they are the “Perfect Couple”, after the honeymoon phase ends and the healthy relationship begins… NRS quickly fades away.
“You and Robin are in the honeymoon phase. Everything’s perfect. Every song on the radio’s about you. Every other couple sucks. Enjoy it, NRS doesn’t last forever.”– Ted, How I Met Your Mother
When I first met Romeo, I experienced the smuggiest of New Relationship Smugness that ever did exist in all of the land: (more…)

Yesterday-1; Me-0 13

Rejected titles for this entry include:

  • Terrible Poker Face and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day
  • Not The First Time I’ve Cried at the Gyno
  • Some Days You’re the Pigeon; Some Days You’re the Statue

Y’all. Follow me down the rabbit hole…

7:18am Realize that I’ve snoozed 6 times and have way overslept due to my disproportionately awful Oscars party hangover. (Two glasses should not make me feel like all light and sound is trying to punish me… even if my two glasses were extremely large. And full. And black with a small opening at the top. Fine. They were bottles. I drank two bottles. Whatever.) (more…)


The Bad Boy 6

I’ve been destroyed by the dissolution of relationships in about as many ways as you could imagine. In attempts to make sure that the heartbreak that I’m barely keeping at arm’s length from being dumped by Romeo doesn’t kill me, over the past two weeks I’ve been doing a post-mortem on all the previous times that a break up has unraveled me, him or both of us in my Little Black Book.

My mantra: You’ve survived this before. You’ll survive this again. (more…)