Corinthians Gave Me Permission To Not Have My Shit Together

So, the other day I was working (read: wasting time at 4:55 as I watched the clock) and I had this epiphany.

I’m not exaggerating at all.  I was just chillin’, just looking at the mess of a desk that I had and really beating myself up emotionally about the things that I hadn’t done that day. About the things I said to people. About the things I didn’t say to people. I knew that I had just had a tough day, and I was just…ugh. Pissed.

But then, I was perusing Pinterest. Because, I mean, is there any other way to live? And I came across this:

What’s that? I don’t have to have myself together? Really?

I personally have my own personal Faith, and I don’t talk much about it because, well, it causes problems, yo. But this? This caught my eye.

I mean, I get the oddness of this thing. I could give myself this permission. But it’s like, seeing this quote, it just felt like it was talking right to me. Telling yourself that you’re beautiful and hearing it from somewhere else are two totally different things. While you should totally love yourself and be cool with giving yourself compliments, but nothing beats hearing “You’re Beautiful”, whether it’s from your mom, your significant other, or a 5 year old. Doesn’t matter. Just feels good, yeah?

So, so did seeing this.

The truth of the matter is that recently, I haven’t had things together. I haven’t gone into too much detail publicly what I’m trying to navigate, but it’s tough. A lot of decisions that need to be made. A lot of emotions that need to be dealt with. A lot of new wrinkles on my face, I think. Even more stressful than the situations themselves is the fact that sometimes I don’t have my shit together and I need to have my shit together or else everything will go wrong, I’ll never get my shit back together, I’ll go crazy, no one will love me anymore, and I’ll fall into a black hole and never come out.

Because all of this is completely logical in the moment I’m thinking it.

You know, sometimes I walk out of the house with two mismatched socks. Other days, I wear my favorite Yoga pants that happen to have a rip in the leg. Or, I drink nothing but diet coke all day, even though I know it’s bad for me. I forget to floss and I don’t go back to do it. I leave my bed unmade, which I hate. I leave my desk at work a mess, which I hate.

I beat myself up for doing it, but I’ve come to accept that it’s okay that I do this.

I can have off days. The key is surrounding myself with people who can help me through these off days. It has come as a huge surprise of who is truly there for me lately. People who I assume would be because I thought it was just, supposed to be, have come up short. I don’t really fault them, it could be the unrealistic expectations that I have.

BUT, People who I thought were too busy to be bothered with my nonsense, have really stepped up, not because I asked them, but because they want to be there. Do people like this really exist? People like…me?

I spent last Sunday with some of my friends doing the Christmas thing at Macy’s and I had such an amazing time. Just being there. Being present. Not worrying about what life is handing me. Putting off my worries until later. It was exactly what I needed.

I’m really focusing on being completely present in these moments. The ones that make me feel full – being around people who I know want to be around me because they tell me. Doing things that I love to do, and having people want to do them with me. Spending time alone coloring, journaling, reading, etc. and not feeling guilty about other things I should be doing. Just BEING.

I really think it’s not about having our shit together all the time. It’s about embracing that you have a lot of shit, knowing it’s going to get messy, but also realizing that you’ll have to clean it up eventually – and that you won’t necessarily have to do it alone. Shit gets messy. Way of life. But being pissed is a choice.

THE END.

 

Rezolooshuns

I’m one of those people who decides to have a New Year’s Resolution or 12 every year.

I’m also one of those people who aggressively tackles whatever the resolution is.

I’m also one of those people who have dropped the ball come February.

Okay, usually January 15th.

Despite knowing that I could possibly fail again, I’m going to have a few resolutions this year. I’m actually convinced that these promises to myself may stick. Not because I’m more dedicated this year, but because I’ve chosen things to improve that I actually want. Plus, you kind of have to keep trying if you want anything to get done. AM I RIGHT?

So. Let’s lay these babies out!

The Losing Weight / Getting Healthy One

Every year, losing weight is on my list of things to do. While I’d love to lose 15-20 lbs it’s not really the weight loss that I’m looking for. I want to be more healthy. Even so, the key to being healthy isn’t just eating healthy, but being active.

The reason why weight loss never happens is because I haven’t found an activity that I actually enjoy doing. I get into these spells of running, but I don’t like it much. Yoga, I’ve wanted to try, but not sure if I’ll actually like it. Maybe I won’t know until I try.

Back when I was in my late teens, I was a dancer. In fact, I spent a good 10 years doing a combination of Ballet, Tap, and Jazz. I loved it. I loved being active. I loved dancing. I loved recitals. I loved the costumes. I loved it all. With my schedule as busy as it is, I don’t know if I could swing being in a Dance Academy of any kind. I may just have to stick with my Dance Moms obsession while pretending to be in a recital as I watch it.

I’m going to be trying a few different things. Possibly a musical aerobics class. Something with music, something with moving, something with some kind of routine involved.

I’ll continue my Jillian Michaels workout each day. She keeps me in line.

I’ll keep choosing the right foods to eat, and allowing myself to cheat once in a while.

 

The Cultivating Meaningful Relationships One

I’ve done a lot of house cleaning over the years — Getting rid of relationships that bring me down. When someone disrespects me, I’m really good at cutting them off. My weakness comes when someone that I truly care about isn’t treating me to the standard that I’ve created. Since I care for them, I tend to make excuses for why it’s acceptable that they said (or didn’t say) whatever it is.

My goal for the year is not to cut people out of my life, but to give people a fair opportunity to stay in it. To me, this means letting them know that they’ve done something that made me feel badly, and put the ball in their court to keep our relationship, friendship, whatever alive.

Since any kind of relationship is a 2 way street, I’d like to become a safer place, as a person, for people to share their feelings with. My keen ability to be un-emotional has caught up with me. Hiding my emotions isn’t as fun or strengthening as it used to be. I’ve found myself wanting to tell my friends how much I appreciate them. Wanting to tell my family that I appreciate them.  And even wanting to take other relationships to new levels of expression. The problem comes in when I try to do this, people tend to not believe that I’m serious because I’m Katie, the one with all of the jokes.

Redefining how people view me might not be as easy as I thought, but I can change the messages I send to attempt to modify this.

 

The Realizing That I’m not Broken One

One of the best methods of living is the “I am Enough” method of which I learned from Molly Mahar @ Stratejoy.

It’s so easy to admit our short comings, pick out the negative things about our bodies, etc. When someone says something that even remotely suggests that we’re different or abnormal, we tend to hang onto these things.

Several things someone who I actually care about has said to me over the duration of the time I’ve known them have been hanging out in my mind. Their actual content don’t matter much, but they were things that made me twist my face in disbelief that he actually thought they were things that you say to ANY female, or any one for that matter. But I don’t believe they were said to hurt me so much as it was because he thought I could handle them because of my tough exterior, but they actually have affected me.

I’m letting them go. I’m letting them off the hook.  Not for them, but for me. Their opinions are not mine. I don’t think I’m strange. I don’t think I’m weird. I’m me, I’m Katie Colihan, with all of my eccentricities and flaws, I’m perfectly fine the way I am. From my overdue-for-a-cut hair, to my curves, to my need-a-pedicure toes. No one else’s opinion of me matters, except for my own. If I let these random comments that really are ridiculous, seriously, email me if you want me to share these doozies with you… affect me, then I’m allowing this person to have total control over how I view myself.

No way, Jose.

 

As much as I want to make little modifications to myself and my lifestyle, I think it’s essential to realize that just as I am, right now, is fine. If these resolutions fall through, I’m still perfectly fine. I don’t need anyone’s approval. No one’s acceptance. I’m not making these changes for anyone else other than myself. I just want to enjoy my body, my relationships, and myself just a little bit more.

 

Naked. Alone. Happy. + A Christmas Thing That Made Me Cry.

I woke up this morning alone, happy, and naked in my own bed.  The sun was shining through my window and I didn’t hide under the blanket trying to will it back behind a cloud.  I huge stretched, squinted my face, scratched my head, and sat right up.  “Time for work”, I said out loud.

As I walked the 6 paces from my queen sized pillow top to my door, I passed by my mirror. I gazed over and saw myself in all of my glory. I chuckled, smiled, and proceeded to put on a robe to begin my commute from my room to my (shared) bathroom.

Maybe this morning seems like your every morning. It’s definitely not mine. Just the fact that I woke up alone + happy is enough to make me take a second look.

Did I have a late night caller who brought me to this morning of extreme bliss?

Did I drink an abundant amount of alcohol last night and wake up dodging a hang over?

Did I grow a 6 pack of rock hard abs and a body made for magazine covers overnight?

Nope. Nope. Hell Nope.

I woke up today feeling happy to be Katie Colihan. Happy to have the home that I do, the friends that I do,  the family that I do.

Things have been extremely complicated recently. That partly explains why I’ve been so absent. I’ve mentioned before that my life has taken an interesting turn, and I’m learning how to navigate a relationship   that is unlike any other I’ve ever had. My grandmother is now on morphine, completely immobile, and we’re not sure if it’s her last Christmas. I’m spending the first Christmas ever without my father, and my cousin. My emotions have been all over, but I’m learning how to rope them in, process them, and more importantly feel them.  Then, once they’ve been felt, letting them go if they serve me no purpose. Who needs to hold onto the remnants of yucky feelings?

I’ve been up and down on the scale – eating really well for a week, and then falling off the wagon and downing a cheesesteak. (I live in Philadelphia, COME ON!) I run for 3 days, and then I stop for 10. I have a love-hate relationship with my body and have for years.  I appreciate what I do have, but I’d sure like that 6 pack I’ mentioned.

With all of these confusing feelings, it was amazing to wake up feeling happy today. Nothing spectacular happened to trigger it.  No one said anything to me to make me feel this way. No heart-to-hearts, no successful client negotiations, no Christmas bonuses. Just me, just sleep, just naked.

And that was enough to make me happy.

So I’m running with it. Or, sitting at my desk with it.

And I have a special little bonus for you, my little love muffins. Someone shared this little Christmas narration with me yesterday, and I expected it to be obscene and talking about snow blowing and other inappropriateness. I was wrong.

This here little morsel of awesomeness is a little Christmas Story narrated by an older man and he talks about ice skating. And love. And loss. And communication. And memories. And music.  I think everyone takes something different from this, but what I took was the beauty and tragedy of love unspoken. It’s beautiful because whether you speak it or not, you still feel it, and if you’ve ever felt love for anyone, you know it’s unlike anything else. And still, the tragedy lies in that if you never say it, you never get to share that love, that beauty, with the other person. And love really is best when it’s a two person emotion, yeah?

That’s what I got, among many other things. Would love to hear what you get.

Warning: It’s 45 minutes. But you can easily just listen for a bit, and then tune in again later. Totally worth it.

You can listen right now, in fact. I’m done talking.

 

Being Comfortable Is Comfortable Until It’s Not Anymore

I’ve spent the last little bit of this year being comfortable. Coming from a girl with a history of depression and anxiety, it probably sounds like a lovely place to be — a place of comfort and questionable contentment. It’s a far cry for being in despair, turmoil, and looking for a permanent way out of pain, that’s for sure.

With this comfortable state has come some negative stuff too. Like, my health consciousness has fallen through the cracks. I’ve stopped pursuing new clients, I’ve even let some responsibilities go to bask in the comfort of not being required to do things.  I mean, my days off as of late have literally been spent laying around, taking naps, and eating horrible food. I’m not saying that I don’t enjoy being a little bad and deviating away from the ‘right’ thing, but it’s taking a definite toll on my body and mind.

I began to notice that I was feeling much less proactive about things. I was more on edge, more sensitive, and feeling exponentially more needy than usual. I was looking to those who I was closest to to make me feel better. Probably not the best idea to throw up all over my friends. Especially when the key to me feeling better is inside of ME. That’s not to say that I don’t adore my core friends for the endless conversations and talking me through my mini crisis. Because, sometimes I just need someone to say “What you’re feeling is okay.” I think my favorite interaction came from my Boston Marriage Partner:

 

 

…and this is why I remain sane way more than I should be.

ANYWAY

This whole being comfortable comes with a price. Especially when you spend a few weeks, uh, okay, months, being comfortable and ignoring all of the signs of discomfort because “OMG, I’m too busy being so comfortable in my mismatched pajamas, eating greasy food, and drinking all the soda. Life is good. *BURP* *Scratch crotch*”

Any gross feelings that came up, I’d either blow ridiculously out of proportion or ignore completely. Neither of which helped address it. I’ve had this discomfort in my belly recently. Not like, THAT kind of discomfort. I’m not pregnant. I’m not constipated. But the feeling that something just isn’t right. I think they call that mess ‘intuition’ or something. I kept ignoring the feeling, swallowing it (TWSS), and waiting for it to pass. About a week ago, I spent the day sitting cross-legged on the floor, on the verge of tears because WTF WAS WRONG WITH ME? But I couldn’t cry. I wasn’t even sure what the hell I was feeling. Was I feeling anything?

I spent a few days doing something different. I felt the feeling. Like, really felt it, just as it was. I didn’t over process it. I didn’t ignore it. t let it take me over if it needed to. I felt…whatever it was I was feeling. There’s nothing more difficult than feeling something that you can’t give a name to. It’s like going to the hospital knowing something is wrong, but the quack doctor tells you that you’re nuts, and sends you home with some bullshit diagnosis that just isn’t right.

But then, last night, as I was sitting in bed, reading Sookie Stackhouse and emerging myself in the world of all things Vampires and Fairies, I realized what I’ve been feeling. I gave the feeling that’s been plaguing me a name. I knew I had identified it correctly because tears came to my eyes, and I felt like someone finally understood me. It was totally kick-ass to know that it was ME who understood ME.

What I’m feeling is a longing for the way things used to be. I miss people. I miss situations. I miss feelings. I JUST MISS THINGS! That’s it. I’m not batshit crazy, well, no more than normal. I have a legit emotion that I’m working through, and that’s okay. These feelings of missing things are still there, but now it’s easier to handle because I know what it is. DIAGNOSIS: MISSING THINGS. LONGING FOR THE PAST.

The next part, I know is that I’ll have to figure out which things are gone, which things aren’t coming back, which things are out of my control, and which things I’m just missing because I’m not doing them. Like brunch with friends. Nothing is stopping me from doing that. But missing people who are gone from my life, well, you know how that goes.

Learning to just be with my discomfort and not ignoring it is really hard. Sometimes I need to stop what I’m doing, go outside, and just breathe for a few minutes. I have tons of  back end stuff going on in life right now, but a lot of it is all about how I’m going to process it.

Shit is hard.

But, as Jillian Michaels says to me every damn day, “When things get hard, that’s when change is happening.”

Okay, Jillian. Not only do you have a smoking bod, you’re all up in my emotions too. Clearly I’m shedding more than lbs. this month.

I win.

 

Katie’s Back – Wait, Did I Even Leave?

Monday night, I was doing a last minute jam session with my client in my office and I came up with a solution to a very minor issue. It wasn’t a cancer cure. It wasn’t a way to bring our brothers, sisters, and friends home from overseas, it wasn’t a way to sell the toy I have dubbed as ‘245’ in order to score some of my money back. Nope. None of that. It was quite literally a checkbox on a word document.

When I provided the suggestion, my client lit up, exclaimed “I love it! Katie. Is. Back!”

I 1/2 grinned, 1/2 looked at him like he was pulling a Tom Cruise on the couch type thing, and 3/4 was kind of offended.

Note: Math and I ain’t friends, yo.

I mean, things have been a little touch and go around these parts. I have fab days and bad days and some indifferent days, but isn’t that how life is. I mean, really. But was I truly absent to a point where basic solutions became fewer and farther between for me? Was I not dependable?

YIKES.

I’ve said before how awesome I am at starting things. I love new journals, clean bedrooms, a clean office, new relationships, etc. When those things start to get old, I feel like the attraction and glimmer have faded and I lose interest. As great as I am at starting things, I’m equally good at abandoning and shutting down. Character flaw, I embrace it. That doesn’t mean I like this little flaw of mine. I shutter at the thought of the missed opportunities that I’ve experienced because of letting go of something instead of holding on. There’s a time for letting go, and a time for holding on. It’s a balance, but I tend to lean to one side.

I’m trying to change that whole thing up though. Plenty of situations have presented themselves recently that are just screaming “LEAVE. STOP. DON’T GO FURTHER. DO NOT PASS GO. COLLECT THE $200 AND SPLIT.” But, contrary to my inner-voice, I’m hanging tight. I haven’t abandoned any responsibilities. I haven’t ditched anyone from my life. I’m practicing the art of going with the flow; knowing that I might be a little down, but that means that good times are coming.

It’s a different way to live life. Especially when I’ve spent so long with this “Ditch when it gets bad” method of survival. Which, truth be told, isn’t as much a method of survival as it is an intentional sabotage of all of the things I want. The fact is that even the most delicious dreams and goals require a lot of work and sweat. That whole “No one ever said it would be easy, they said it would be worth it” rings abundantly clear to me now.

Have you noticed that I’ve posted a shit-ton of times in the last week? Like, seriously. Almost every morning over coffee I’ve gotten back into the habit of writing. Sometimes it’s public stuff for all of you little lovers to see, and other times I had on over to 750 Words to throw some words down that are for my eyes only. Because, you know, sometimes I need some privacy, yo. Why did I stop writing? It’s like, the best way to get all of these cray-cray thoughts out of my head and manifesting themselves into ridiculous assumptions and self-created fears.

WHY DO I ALWAYS DO THINGS THAT SABOTAGE ME?

I guess the first step is realizing that I have an issue. Now, we move onto correcting the shiz. I’ve been doing a decent job, like I said. I have been feeling more myself recently, and I even (finally) picked up my Nook and started reading again. I’m hopelessly re-addicted to the Sookie Stackhouse Novels. I’m making my bed before I leave in the morning. I’m wearing something other than yoga pants to work every day. I wear makeup. I’m working out again (though I fell off that wagon over the last few days! EEK!).  But each day, I’m sure to do at least one thing that I know I love to do for myself. This morning it was listening to my Sookie book on my way into work and indulging in a Pumpkin Spice Latte from Cosi. I also sent Good Morning texts to some of my favorite people, and forced myself to be more social.

Getting back into the swing of things is a hard job, but I’m working through it.

Katie’s Back.

I need to start with self-pep talks EARLY.