for you.

About ten years ago, I fell in love with a man I hardly knew. In the spirit of new romance and taking chances, I upended my life and moved to Iowa. Our relationship lasted five years. Like all relationships, it was a lot. Unlike any relationship I’d ever had, it tested me in every way possible and that experience in its entirety directly shaped who I am today. The man this is about passed away a few months ago. I’ve often wanted to share the story of our relationship here and the lessons it taught me but I never felt I had the right to, in fairness to him. The way things ended for us was in no way peaceful or respectful. It was so painful and personal that I was never quite sure how to talk about it. And with his passing, I’ve been walking this super awkward line of feeling grief about it and feeling like I don’t have a right to feel grief about it.

When you spend that amount of time with someone, it’s inevitable that you’ll be a keeper of memories (both past and present) and a walking testimony to their life. That’s really the hardest part about grieving this for me – the stuff that has no place to go now that he’s gone. I mean, I could tell you all of Dave’s favorite things from the time we were together but what do I do with the memories of his that I’m the keeper of? There’s just no place for me to put them. 

I feel like part of what I’m feeling now is the heartache of knowing his energy and spirit are no longer Earth-side and also sadness from the heartbreak that I ran away from when we went on to live our lives separately. I’m struggling with the finality of how things were left. Things I hoped one day we could talk about.

A friend once said of him, “to know Dave is to love him” and that was so true. He never met a stranger and there were people scattered all over the country that he called friends. We never went anywhere he didn’t run into someone he knew or where he didn’t make a new friend. I fell in love with Iowa through his eyes. I still call Des Moines my home because he showed me how lovely she could be. I fell in love with baseball because of how passionately he felt about the game. He taught me about history and gardening and music. He was so complicated that it’s hard for me to talk about him. I feel grateful I experienced his kindness and that our time together allowed us both to grow and go on to find the lives we were meant to live. I’m just so sorry there isn’t more of his on this side of life, but his impact remains.


behind the curtain

The tl;dr version of this is that I’m pretty sure I discovered the secret to life.

However, since I’ve never been brief in my entire life, let me get to that point through a story.

In the past 10+ months, I’ve learned (humbly, I might add) that all parenting clichés are true. Yes, every one. It’s true that you forget how to just be alone and what your life looked like prior to every thought and conversation being driven by your tiny human; yes, you do have your physical heart scooting/crawling/walking around outside your chest; yes, it does change your marriage/sense of self/friendships/everything.

It feels as though my life has split into two distinct halves: the blissful ignorance and black and white of pre-parenthood, and the all-knowing, man-behind-the-curtain, all-sorts-of-new-colors post-parenthood. As I look around through these new eyes, everything seems different. Here’s where we get to the good part. I was talking to my sister a few weeks ago when this idea just popped out of my mouth: two feelings that should be completely opposite of one another can exist in the same space at the same time. In any given moment, you can be both exhausted and elated; you can be struggling and still get one foot in front of the other; you can be heartbroken and hopeful.

It’s the most surprising lesson I’ve learned so far. I’m just now realizing there might be half of you thinking “duh Ryan. Welcome to parenthood.” I’m gonna bring it all together now (I’m a little rusty – I haven’t written for myself in quite some time). There’s a light and a dark and a rainbow of colors and they all make up a life. There’s the happiness and the heartbreak and the love (so much love) and the disappointment and the anger and the struggle and so many more. It all can coexist at once. Once I realized there’s this next level to my emotional understanding and I learned to respect it, life became so much sweeter for me. I can watch my son pull himself up and feel so proud and I can also understand that he’ll keep growing and learning and everything will always change forever and ever, the end. It’s heavy but it’s okay. That moment isn’t marked by a one-dimensional feeling. I’m feeling in three dimensions now.

dirty dancing and podcasts

Hi guys!  Happy Summer!  Des Moines is showing up in all her finest, as usual.  The city is alive, people are brunching on patios, it’s getting hot and humid, and possibility is in the air.

I have been listening to a lot (a.lot.) of podcasts – both at work and in the car (thanks to my 45-minute commute – which I’ll soon be trading in for something more like 5-minutes – woo!).  When I’m not listening to murder podcasts, I’m listening to Armchair Expert.  I’m drawn to it because of the deep dialogue.  By nature, I’m interested in getting past the superficial who, what, when, where, why and digging in to the heart of a person and Dax has the gift of delivering just that about some of the most interesting people (looking at you Duncan Keith, Erin Lee Carr, John Gottman).  So today, I was listening to their interview with Elizabeth Gilbert and the Universe nudged me.

Stay with me while we take the long way around…


I’m taking a leap here and assuming like 99% of you have seen or at least heard of Dirty Dancing.  I mean, as a child of the 80’s, it was basically required viewing for me.  Everyone from my high school girlfriends to my step-mom LOVED that movie.  While I liked it, I never really got it.  I was “meh” about it.  Then, for what was probably the first time in a decade, I randomly watched it a summer or two ago… and I got it.

Guys, that movie was ahead of its time, and I appreciated Baby’s character in a way I never had before.  She’s just a girl, trying to find her own way, after making all the “right” choices in life up to that summer.  I realized the reason I liked that movie so well after watching it as an adult (with a little life under my belt) was because while it was a love story, it wasn’t a happily-ever-after story.  We don’t know if Baby and Johnny get together after that summer and I realized that I liked it that way – which was in direct opposition with how I felt about it when I was a kid.  I wanted to believe more of love.  The younger Ryan believed that a sweeping love story needed to be the one that was forever.  My adult self knows that’s not the case.  Loving someone and being loved back is really a gift.  It doesn’t mean it’s a love meant to last forever, either.  Love can be the thing that gets you to the next chapter, or teaches you a lesson, or helps motivate you to climb the next rung of the ladder, or gets you unstuck, or (in the case of the movie) deepens your understanding about life – and you come away forever changed.  I’m so much more comfortable with that than I was when I was younger because I respect it now.  I spent a lot of time really busy with trying to make love what I wanted it to be instead of embracing it for what it was and missing the lesson entirely.  I get it now.


You with me?  Let’s get back to Elizabeth Gilbert on Armchair Expert.

She was talking about her time cooking on a ranch in Wyoming, going to NYU, working at Coyote Ugly and I was thinking to myself this lady has some STORIES.  She said she met her first husband at the bar and we all know how that worked out (cause we read Eat, Pray, Love).  That’s when it hit me – instead of feeling sad for her or being disappointed or having the interview leave a bad taste in my mouth, I realized all those experiences, all those loves, brought her to her life today and taught her something that left her forever changed.  I think we’re meant to be mindful and respectful of the people that enter our lives and not fight it when those pieces just don’t fit like they did before anymore.  I respect the shit outta people who are living heart-forward every day and instead of trying to hide their mistakes, they embrace the lessons it taught them.  I get it.  

It’s the same way I felt after I realized that Dirty Dancing is actually a really great movie.

terrible writing club: thoughts on empathy

I’ve been stuck in a rut, creatively speaking, for quite some time.  I’ve been toying with the idea of writing prompts but never got around to actually looking into it.  I figured it was fate when one of my very favorite podcasts, Terrible Thanks For Asking, announced they were doing a writing club.  All I had to do was text (easy) and they would send me automatic weekly writing prompts.  It was basically marrying two of my favorite things: writing and emotional stuff.

Yesterday, I got a text from the #TerribleWritingClub and I’ve been thinking about it since.  The text read like this:

Quote from Nora, episode #49: “Sometimes I think the hidden key to empathy is just humility and curiosity.  It’s just saying, ‘hmm, I don’t get that… tell me more?’”  Write about your empathy.  Where do you struggle to feel empathetic?  To yourself?  To someone who gets right under your skin?  What comes easy to you where empathy is concerned?

em·pa·thet·ic /ˌempəˈTHedik/ adjective
  1. showing an ability to understand and share the feelings of another.

My first thought went to my struggle with being empathetic toward others.  I feel like I’m a great listener and someone whose default setting is empathy, but I’m also a fixer.  I fail to ask the simple question: “do you want me to just sit with you in this or do you want me to help you find a solution?”  Instead of approaching it with curiosity (as Nora does), I also fail to go back and get more information for fear of making someone uncomfortable.  I feel like I have to stay two steps ahead in an emotional conversation so I’m not caught off-guard without a response.  It’s a fatal flaw that I’m working on.

I was listening to another podcast this week that kicked around this whole idea of being empathetic to oneself and people who might get under the skin.  The argument was (paraphrasing here) ‘do you throw the art out with the artist’ if the artist turns out to be a garbage human?  Does their garbage humanness taint the art?  It made me think maybe people are afraid to be uncomfortable; I know I am in certain aspects.  As a result, there’s a knee-jerk reaction in the time we’re living which is to avoid offending anyone or making anyone uncomfortable.  The truth is (I’ve discovered through lots of therapy) that growth comes from discomfort.  Good dialogue comes from discomfort.  Change comes from discomfort.  Growth, dialogue and change are all part of being empathetic.  The willingness to be uncomfortable is part of being empathetic.

Think about your answer to that question.  Do you struggle being empathetic to yourself?  Do you struggle in that connection with others?  Do you find curiosity an essential part of empathy?  I do think empathy is something we could all use a little more of.  I’ll be taking this thought with me, going forward.  I hope you’ll consider it too.

…still learning

As an adult, there are some things I should have figured out by now and for some reason, these happen to be the lessons I keep repeating.  I thought I might share a few of those with you that have been ever-present for me this year.

Lesson #1: Wear sunscreen.

This one is pretty obvious.  I get that your skin is the only one you’ve got and I haven’t been very good to mine.  However, there’s a basic rule with the ownership of Irish skin that you put on sunscreen.  My people don’t tan… we burn, look like a lobster, peel and the process begins again.  (Srsly, a dime for every time I heard “you look really red.”)  I don’t know what makes me think I can “outsmart” that by avoiding the reapplication process.  Every.time.I.try.  Put it on your face, put it all over you and repeat.

Lesson #2: Don’t let money control you.

This one has kicked me in the teeth more times than I’d care to admit.  I wish I’d paid attention to the experiences I could have had with money vs the stuff I could accumulate.  This is priority number one for 2018.  If anyone invents an app that would make me have to solve an impossible math question before Amazon will let me hit “buy now”, please let me know.  I don’t want to work to pay my bills and have nothing left – I want to work to pay my bills and then do the things that are going to make memories.

Lesson #3: Don’t let someone else’s timeline be YOUR timeline.

I have seen this one not only in myself but a lot of the people around me.  It’s easy to get swept up thinking about what could/should/may have happened but that removes you from being fully present in your life as it happens.  All the energy I’ve spent comparing myself to others has really amounted to nothing more than wasted time.  It’s really been since my mid-thirties that I’ve started to embrace this feeling of going against the norm and really creating my own path.  I want to figure out what my story looks like.  Luckily, my parents have always been super supportive about all my ideas – no matter how crazy.  Remember that time I up-and-moved to Iowa, mom?

Lesson #4: Say “yes”.

After some personal setbacks and years of making excuses as to why not, I decided this year that I’d just say “yes”.  That means checking in with myself to make sure I’m not giving too much without taking some me time.  I am an introvert, after all.  I have found that I don’t usually regret saying “yes” to something after I’ve done it.  This is the best way to make friends and memories; maybe even overcome some fears in the process.  This has, by far, been the best thing I’ve done for myself.  Am I tired and fried at the end of the day?  For sure.  Do I want to sit in my pajamas with my pup and eat pizza?  You know it.  But I don’t want to string my days together having sat on the couch – I wanna liiiiive.

Lesson #5: Let people know you.

While I wasn’t necessarily raised to keep private things private, I do feel like I really struggled with letting people see the real me through college and after.  I molded myself to fit a situation instead of going in there, gangbusters, saying “this is who I am.”  I used to save private stuff for my family and friends and then project a certain image to the world.  In the last several years, that whole facade has fallen away and people truly are left with the real me.  I don’t have the energy to fake it anymore.  In the world we live in today, where real CONNECTION is scarce and mental health doesn’t get the attention it deserves, we need to stop pretending everything is okay and get a little more comfortable with being vulnerable.  It’s quite simple for me… what reason would be good enough for me to be anything but myself; for me to have any other opinion than the one I feel passionate about; to fight for anything less than what I believe in with my whole heart?


I heard it said about being a parent that the days are long and the years go by fast… that’s how I feel about my 30’s.  A minute ago I was turning 30 and now we’re looking down the barrel of 36.  That said, I can’t wait to keep peeling back layers and seeing who I really am and what I have to offer the world.  I can’t wait to keep choosing to make my life about what feels right to me – not what other people say is right.  I certainly hope this has been a little bit inspiring for you guys, and maybe helped some of you feel less alone.  I’m here – and I’m still learning.



Hi friends!

I’ve been cooking up some bloggy-goodness for you all and was kind of coming up empty.  I started an optimistic spring post (maybe saved for later) but it just didn’t feel right.  I think I’ve mentioned before that the way I suss out blog ideas is by paying attention to what’s happening around me.  It sounds woo-woo but it’s kind of like, what is the universe telling me?  What messages am I hearing over and over that not only helps me grow but helps me connect with you all?  I feel like it’s important for me to have something of value to say and it’s clear that you guys connect more to the vulnerable stuff (vs. blogs about my dog – seriously guys, she’s amazing but that’s cool).

I was thinking I wanted to tell you some things I’ve learned over the last few months but it seems so much bigger than just the last few months.  I’m 35-years-old (cringe) and I’m literally just starting to feel who I am as an individual.  It feels so cliche to type that, you guys, cause there is no shortage of older = wiser sayings but that’s exactly what it feels like.  I have been working on giving myself permission to be me – not some best version of me that I want to present to the world.  I know, I know… that sounds so.obvious.Ryan. but consider this: there are the labels you put on yourself and there are the labels that are put on you by the world.  It’s so easy to become the world version instead of doing the work to be an individual.  I think once you’re labeled “funny” or “nice” or “responsible” it’s easy to fall on those words to define you.  For me, those labels revoked necessity for me to dig deeper.  The best thing ever said to me – and the key that fits the lock – was “Ryan, you have agency in this.”  And I do.  And you do.

All that had been swirling around and before I had a chance to get it here, I read (and reposted) something on Instagram on Sunday that totally struck me.

credit to instagram account @queens_over_bitches

I’ve ruined so many GOOD relationships by not being straight-forward.  I’ve let people come and go in my life without letting them know what they meant to me.  I’ve held my tongue telling someone what a unicorn-of-a-human-being they are so I don’t come off weird, or needy, or desperate.  Let me issue a global apology for that.  The reason I did that is I didn’t know who I was; I didn’t know what mattered to me, and I thought someone else would come along and tell me who to be and what mattered to me.  I waited for someone – anyone – to tell me.  In some twisted way, I think it was easier for me to live my life as the person other people needed me to be than it was for me to be the person I needed me to be.

It’s taken a LONG time to get to the point where I realize how important vulnerability and connection are to me; that they’re more than just words, but an essential element to living my best life.  This is not easy work but it’s absolutely worth it.

feels (updated)

Guys, get ready to dig deep.  I’m not going to distract you with another blog about my dog – we’re going to talk about my feeeeelings.

C.S. Lewis said a thing.  And he said it far better than I ever could:

“To love at all is to be vulnerable. Love anything and your heart will be wrung and possibly broken. If you want to make sure of keeping it intact you must give it to no one, not even an animal. Wrap it carefully round with hobbies and little luxuries; avoid all entanglements. Lock it up safe in the casket or coffin of your selfishness. But in that casket, safe, dark, motionless, airless, it will change. It will not be broken; it will become unbreakable, impenetrable, irredeemable. To love is to be vulnerable.”

I meant this to be a blog about how heartache is the yin to the universal yang of love.  However, in the last couple days, as I’ve kicked it around my chest its emerged looking like something different.  While I do feel like I am at a place where the heart-casket seems like the best option, I realize that isn’t who I am.  Is it exhausting and painful?  Oh.yeah. But it has never occurred to me to be any other way.  Romantic relationships, in my life, have been like a game of musical chairs and for all my efforts, the music has stopped and the chairs are full.

Let me take a short detour here – and stay with me – I promise it’s all going somewhere.

I was listening to a podcast today that got me thinking.  The subject was ‘what do you wish your grown-ups said to you when you were a kid?’  Essentially, what troubles you now that might have been saved with words back then?  You guys know, cause I’ve told you plenty of times, that my grown-ups are amazing.  In fact, my mom is always asking me if she did something to mess me up (she probably will after reading this) and the answer is always “no”.  So I asked my people two questions: 1.) how they would describe me as a kid and 2.) what the challenges were in raising me as a consequence.  They did not even skip a beat before telling me how perfect I was (my dad actually used the word angelic) and what a joy it is to have raised me.  Now, it’s not quite what I was looking for but it’s endearing that even given the opportunity, their only truth is kindness.

I know what they said is not entirely true.  I was a sensitive child.  Embarrassingly sensitive.  Exhaustingly sensitive.  I worried about death all the time.  I worried about war and starving children and abandoned animals.  My mom said I worried about the seals turning brown (did I read that somewhere?) and the polar bears not having enough to eat.  What she said next is what changed the course of this blog post.  She said: “you told me you loved me every five minutes. You would stop what you were doing and come to the window and through the screen you would say “love you mom”.”  Now that can’t have been easy.  I was an insecure little thing and I didn’t have the words to understand my emotions which is how I ended up having my feelings hurt very easily.  What I took from that though, is from the time I was young, I was never afraid to put my heart out there.  In fact, I was constantly giving it away.  I even used my love for others as a way to fill them up on the off-chance they were empty.

That about who I am today and how I navigate the world.  My default setting is and always has been heart-forward.  It’s my gift as well as my detriment.

See?  Brought back around, as promised.

I’m not going end this on optimism because that’s not what I feel.  I’m accepting that it’s okay.  So often I try to push through the bad stuff and pretend like it’s all okay; put on a good face.  I’m learning that sometimes it’s okay to just spend time in the heaviness.  So I’m giving myself permission to do that for a bit.

**Edited for clarity: I’m worried I haven’t done a good job communicating here. I’m not waiting around, as I have done, for *someone* to come along and validate the gifts I’ve possessed since I was a little Ryan. I realize there’s a very real chance that may not happen, and that’s okay (honest). I can still be me without that. I wanted to say that I love, I have always loved, I will always love. While I’m giving myself room to be “not okay” in this season of being, I will recharge and keep doing what I do. It may just look different than I thought and that’s okay.

There. Optimism.

it’s not your dog, it’s mine

There are two camps in the domesticated animal world: cat and dog.  I am firmly (and have always been) in camp dog.


Even before I got my pupper, Sala, I had a certain naïveté when it came to dogs.  I believed they were all friendly and should be stopped and petted whenever possible.  We (the dog and I) lock eyes, I speak ONLY to the dog and when their tails get going, I die a little bit from cuteness overload.

When I adopted Sala, I thought for sure she’d make me more social.  I had lofty dreams of dog park dates with friends (so I could meet more dogs, obvs), taking her on car trips where we’d hike our way through places like Colorado and West Des Moines, going to the pet store together to get treats and toys; just really enjoying having a co-pilot.  While she’s proven to be an amazing dog (who I feel lucky to be blessed with), I’ve had to rework a bit of my plan for our life together.  See, I’m not sure what shifted in her or what happened in her life before me but she became a bit of a dog-aggressive-dog.  It has definitely changed my ignorance-is-bliss outlook when it comes to pups.

In the last two-ish years with Sala, I’ve read a lot about how to be a better dog mom, how to work with her, how to understand her; I’ve bought a lot of stuff – and returned a lot of stuff – in an attempt to help us.  Not once didn’t occur to me, though, that this might be something other dog-parents deal with.  Until I started following some dog trainers on Instagram.  I can’ how it changed my perspective knowing there are other people who have dogs who basically defy their dog-ness and can’t be around other dogs.  Reading other dog owner’s pleas for help was something I understood all too well.

I find myself wanting to apologize whenever we see another dog on a leash (yes, I do apologize to the dogs too).  It’s this clumsy exchange of me uttering a surprised “oh” and then trying to refocus Sala while we turn the other direction.  There’s guilt in that for me.  I want to wear a sign that says, “it’s not your dog, it’s mine”.  I know what I can do now is avoid situations that make her uneasy (because they make me uneasy too).  I’ve learned that (while I struggle with how it feels) it’s okay for me to avoid other dogs while she’s on-leash.  I’ve learned that maybe there’s stress she feels which is brought on by other dogs.  I’ve learned that with time and dedication, I may be able to change the way she responds to dog friends.  There are things that can be done and that gave me some hope that she and I both can change (I do love action items).

I know there’s still a lot of work to be done for the both of us.  I’ve understood as well that we’ll never really be the dog park type but that doesn’t diminish what an awesome dog I have.  I just wanted to offer up the perspective of a person with an anti-social dog.  So if/when you see someone like me scamper away with my dog in-tow, please know that it’s not you – I’m just taking care of my pup.


Look at this good girl in her bandana

who are you?

“Who are you?”

What a simple question, right?  But when you take it apart and really consider it, it’s a pretty huge idea.

It seems like everything in my life right now is pointing me in the direction of digging in to that idea.  Quick aside in all seriousness: I love the phrase “digging in” so much that it might be on my headstone when I die.

I digress.

This idea grew from a conversation with my therapist, then took root when I stumbled on an Instagram post by Melissa Hartwig (the amazing, kick-ass woman behind the W30).  I found myself thinking: I want to know who I am and own who I am.  I haven’t been able to stop thinking about what it means for me to do that.  I have always owned the fact that I’m moment by moment, feelings fluid, ever-absorbing my environment, tough to pin down.  That’s not near enough of an answer for me, though.

As you know, it started with that same simple question, “who are you?” posed by my therapist.  Out of my mouth came the canned response, “I’m an auntie, a friend, a good listener, a fiercely loyal member of my family and I like to read.”  Those are all words I typically use to identify myself and she came right back by telling me that those words don’t say much about ME and who I actually am as a person.  That answer doesn’t reflect my values, my personality or what gets me out of bed in the morning.  Everyone is a daughter, auntie, uncle, mother, father, son, friend, sibling or a combination of those words.  Those are identifying words that we all fall back on and while there is likely a lot of pride attached to those words, it doesn’t really say who you are at your core.  I’m pretty sure at this point in my life I should know the answer to that question – but I don’t.  I have been so busy avoiding myself that I’ve been focused on helping those around me answer that question for themselves.

Melissa Hartwig wrapped it up in a nice little package called “self-love”, which is a concept that feels foreign to me.  She says everything in life can be taken away (preach, girl) except who we really are.  So why not OWN who we really are – not just those identifiers that are easy responses or the things about us that can be taken away in a moment?  We need to have our identity wrapped up in OURSELVES – not who we are to other people.  Do not allow outside factors to define who we are, she says, and I was completely feeling that.  I’ve often handed a partner the reins in determining who I am; my value; my identity.  I have been stuck waiting for life to happen TO me instead of me happening TO life.  I’m just now starting to grasp this concept.

After much thought and consideration, this is me, as I know me in this moment…

I am strong.  Every day I show up for my life and live it heart-forward.  Sometimes it really, really, really hurts but I’ve never been sorry for my scrapes and bruises because of the lessons I’ve learned in the process.

I am caring.  I have no off-switch in this regard.  I almost care too much.  I’m a very soft person – much too soft for this world – but I’m owning it.

I am dedicated, loyal and determined.  I was once told that I only work under pressure but I think a more correct statement reflecting who I am now is that I work hard despite pressure.  I have shown myself again and again that I can keep my eyes down and continue moving through something till there’s nowhere left to go.  Looking back on where I’ve been, I can see the little rest stops where I might have veered off and taken another path – or more likely should have – but I know that my loyalty is often in the driver’s seat, so we go on.

I am open-minded (and open-hearted).  It’s not too often that I take a hard line about anything.  I’m very malleable in that I listen to other perspectives and give them time to work in me.  Outside opinions often help me get to the heart of my feelings (like this blog post) so I always try to stay open for the wisdom to come.

I am always working to be a healthier version of myself.  This is both at face value and metaphorically.  I don’t strive for perfection I strive for healthy.  I don’t always get it right and sometimes I have to stop what I’m doing, turn around, and go back.  My ultimate goal is to be healthy from the inside out.

I am curious.  I have a SERIOUS thirst for knowledge of all the things.  I like to know the reason behind human motivations and it’s not unusual for my friends, family and really any acquaintance to be met with probing questions from me in an attempt to understand them better.  I speak in feelings and understand emotion.


It’s hard work, figuring out who I am and what I’m about.  This isn’t where the notion ends for me – I’ll keep digging and refining.  I would just encourage you, friends, to really think about who you are at your core… after you’ve gotten past all the easy responses, what are you left with?

hello. it’s me. (have i used that title already?)

As many of you who know me IRL have likely surmised, and to confirm those of you who know me virtually, things have not been great on this side of the screen.  It’s nothing to worry about, just stress levels in the consistently-higher-than-usual category.  Being a person is really HARD sometimes.  Plus, it doesn’t help that I’ve been binging some pretty depressing stuff lately – looking at you ’13 Reasons Why’ and ‘Big Little Lies’ – and have been reading a lot of non-fiction (mostly about this).  I’ve also been trying to practice some self-care and have been learning a lot of *new* things about myself.  We already know when I have nothing good to say and don’t want to talk about myself, I say nothing.  I’ve been lost in my own thoughts and as I have mentioned many times, these feelings lead me to shut down from pretty much everything.  I get “over myself” really quickly because I feel like I have all the tools to “fix” whatever might be broken inside of me.  Exhibit A: I spend so much time in my own mind – analyzing all the things.  Exhibit B: I don’t like drawing any attention to myself.  I become a less-effervescent person which then makes me feel bad so I hide out even more.  Talking about silly things when my life is basically consumed with serious always feels disingenuous to both you and me.  So if you’re still out there: I’m sorry.   Someday, maybe when I’m out of the woods I’m in, we can talk about it.

Until then, let me talk about some of the more non-serious happenings in a little internets roundup of things I’m really feeling right now.

  • I am currently feeling the Bulletproof way of life.  I’m curious about bio-hacking myself mostly because I do feel like good health starts at the cellular level.  There is a prevalence of stimuli in our world today and I like to buck the trend of our just-take-a-pill society.  Pretty soon I’m going to take the plunge and rock my own Bulletproof coffee.  First, I need to get through the book.
  • In a similar vein as the above, I got both myself and my gorgeous sister some of these Mala prayer beads.  It’s something physical to channel my intention to.  The Malas represent certain qualities based on the stone they are made with.  My sister’s is made of Volcanic Stone meant to channel strength and clarity; and mine is made of Labradorite and Malaysian jade meant to channel our spiritual counterparts.
  • Trying to be an adult and get on a budget.  Ugh.
  • Oh!  I became a Rodan + Fields consultant because I believe in the power of good skincare.  And I’m obsessed with skincare so that says a lot.  If you’re equally obsessed, we should chat.
  • You guys.  The Marco Polo app is amaze.  It helps me stay connected to my family without the hassle of having to hang on the phone with FaceTime.  It’s like if FT and texting (my favorite) had a baby, it would be Marco Polo.  The videos stay in a thread like texting so I can go back and watch videos of Avery on replay.
  • Lastly, podcasts.  Almost as much variety as television right now.  I devoured S-Town and man was it DARK but it made me feel things.  Also, I’m going through withdrawal from Accused, Undisclosed S1 & S2, Up & Vanished (now that it’s mostly “solved”)… but true crime is really something that keeps me engaged and able to listen and still get my work done.

Thanks for reading and be well, friends.