Day 189

Grounds for Sculpture


Weird, I’m feeling shy about posting tonight for some reason. Just don’t feel like being online.

I guess I depleted my social abilities today – lots of fun at the Bounce House (after a week of spring break, I think every parent in the county was there), then book club which I had to attend, seeing as I’ve missed the last 3 or 6 and had finally actually read the book…

Plus I’m just depleted. 

Having two 4yo boys makes me feel old sometimes. A week of keeping pace with them has been absolutely fantastic, but also completely exhausting. And of course, they’re up at 6am every day lately WIDE AWAKE and instantly getting into trouble.

I came downstairs today, literally 2 minutes after we’d all woken up, to find W in the kitchen stirring a tiny cup, with salt all over the table and floor. Come to realize, he’d found, opened and tried to interpret the directions of the Salt Crystal kit I’d bought earlier, that had been hidden away on top of the fridge. Don’t ask me how he managed to get it down. And he’s doing the experiment in his pull-up. Stirring chemicals together and spilling them all over the floor and looking at me like, What?

That was just how the day started.

Anyhow, I will admit that those open bottles of wine at book club were just a little tempting tonight. Nothing like book club Moms Night Out after a week of spring break – everyone had their own bottle. I ducked out early to catch C before he fell asleep on the couch, his usual MO. And I should get back to that!

Grateful for this week, it’s been full of sunshine in spite of the weather.


Day 188


In spite of a looming head cold, we fit in a trip to Grounds for Sculpture today – as well as a bike ride and lots of outdoor backyard fun. It was a blast – and now I’m exhausted.

Coming in from the 45-degree weather just now, the warm house filled with afternoon sunshine and mouth-watering smells of C making dinner, I’m filled with gratitude. It’s not perfect, at all, but it’s just right, right now.

C had a bottle nice red open and breathing on the counter, and in the past, I would have added that pleasure to the rest of the afternoon’s perfection. In the moment, it would have been magical, adding it’s own warm, blurry glow. 

But – it would have meant that I wouldn’t go to yoga tonight, or worked on a painting I’m trying to finish, or read a few chapters in the book club book due tomorrow (in fact, I wouldn’t have even been part of a book club before – because staying sober enough to meet on a Friday night would have been out of the question)… and after the afternoon glow had worn off, I would have been chasing a buzz through boy’s bedtime routine, just wanting it all to be over, impatient and edgy with them until I could close their door and get back to the real drinking. And all of this with a cold, so tomorrow would have been even worse – a hangover on top of the headache, sour throat, stuffy nose.

So, I guess I’m walking myself through it and out the other side – into reality.

What a better reality tonight is and will be, without the booze.

Gratitude Postscript

I’m starting to annoy myself with these postscripts, so I’m just going to weave my grateful thoughts into the posts themselves.

Day 187

Christy Turlington in “My Fair Lady” (British Vogue, February 1992 – Photographed by Patrick Demarchelier)


It doesn’t completely miss me that all of this self-improvement comes from a place of privilege. That not everyone could make this happen, or at least would struggle a lot more. Days like today, where in spite of being on spring break with the boys, I hired our friend & sitter to come watch the boys while I went to a yoga class and got a pedicure, returning refreshed for the rest of the day with the boys… days like today leave me feeling grateful as well as a bit spoiled.

This thought will need to wait, as boys just came charging into the room demanding “momma bath time”…

Gratitude Postscript

I’m grateful for it all.

Day 186


Procrastination station over here… I should be working on a book cover design, but it’s a tough project so I’m here instead. 

All this healthy living has me learning a life lesson I should have learned years and years ago (add it to the list of growing experiences I’m having only now, after quitting – and am playing catch up with the grown-ups around me): 

As much as we may live in our minds, our bodies have a big influence on our mental state. And our bodies are machines: what we fuel them with, and how we treat them (sleep, exercise, sunshine etc) makes a huge difference in how we feel. The mind-body connection is obvious, and I knew that already, but feeling and seeing it in action is another thing entirely. 

Small example: today, I haven’t exercised or eaten anything green yet today. Pizza for lunch is sitting like a brick in my stomach and I’m feeling rather dreary and lethargic. Last night’s sleep was interrupted by boys in our bed from 2am on, kicking my back and fussing occasionally. And this mood, which in the past I might have attributed to the stress of work or the depletion of spending time with two energetic 4yos, I can now blame almost 100% on my body’s physical condition.

Knowing that is really freeing for me, a person who tends to get caught up in her thoughts – as though they are more reality than the reality in front of me. 

And knowing that, I have a tool. Tonight, I plan to find a way to work out, eat a big old salad for dinner – maybe with some fish, and get to bed early. Mood lifted already – just in anticipation.

Gratitude Postscript

I’m grateful for another fun morning with the boys (aquarium visit with a fellow mom friend & her two young kids). I’m grateful that today has been going like clockwork, appointments, nap time, freelance etc. I’m grateful C seems to be in a good mood. And I’m grateful that my sister is doing so well after delivering E, our family’s newest member.

Day 185



My sister just had a baby today! After driving herself to the hospital in active labor (bad ass woman that she is), she’s popped out an almost 9lb baby boy and I could not be more excited.

No other news tops this today!

Gratitude? Mounds and mounds of it – for her safe arrival at the hospital (not delivering a baby in the snow by the side of the road) and for the healthy boy who has joined our family who we cannot wait to love on!

Day 184


The Beautiful Walk (La Belle Promenade), by Rene Magritte

April Fools Easter Sunday

6 MONTHS! I made it 6 MONTHS! Wahhooooooo!

When I first started, I remember thinking how far away and impossible 6 months felt. But day by day, it happened. Up days and down days, just normal life happening around me, as if nothing had changed. But so much WAS changing, under the surface. I’m not sure I would have been able to guess how much this decision was going to change my life at the time I quit.

And even after 6 months, I really have no idea, except that it’s made a huge difference, with far-reaching effects, already in the first 1/2 year. 

I hope and pray that the next 6 months continue on the same path and that on celebrating a year, I’ll be able to say that I made progress against some of my current goals, primarily more patience and acceptance with myself and others.

Speaking of goals, I’ve started a rough bullet journal – actually to call it that might be a gross exaggeration – but it’s a visual log of three daily activities I want to track over the next few months: meditation, exercise, and 8 hours of sleep. Today was day 1. The 30-day challenge showed me that having a visual checkbox system was motivating especially after the days started piling up (similar to this blog), so let’s see if it works for these other goals!

A 6-month review:

Looking back, I can see I’ve come a long way. My current slow-down may be partially due to overload of expectations for myself and for the experience of quitting. And I think somehow, my brain knows it needs to go dark for awhile to allow things to percolate in the subconscious. So I’m OK with that.

In the days ahead, my posts may be less about personal growth, and more about salad recipes and exercise achievements… forgive me the insufferable Healthy Shit. In all honesty, once I saw what a difference quitting made, I started making these other tweaks (to diet, exercise etc) and the payoffs have been tremendous. I feel better than I have in years, more energy, more focus, more confidence. And being more aware and in tune with my body, I can see the improvements even just having a green smoothie can make for my mood, energy levels, morning productivity etc.

So I’m tweaking away, while the subconscious percolates.

Gratitude Postscript

I’m grateful for another wonderful day with the boys, not very Easter-y, but filled with outdoor time and great conversation. No timeouts, no screaming (them), no angst and frustration (me). I’m grateful that the hearty salad recipe turned so well, and looking forward to sharing with my friend & neighbor J tomorrow. I’m grateful for fun plans ahead with the boys this week. Last but not least, I’m grateful each and every day for the enjoyment of a long hot shower. I know that sounds weird, but it’s one of my favorite moments of the day, and I savor it. Might as well express that here!