Kale, minus all the bells + whistles

It's not easy being green. Word.

It isn’t easy being green. Word.

Before I launch into today’s tirade, I’d like to issue an apology to my devoted Momoverettes: I’m on deadline for a massive project, thus no blogging of late.

So no need to file a Missing Persons report. I just feel guilty doing my usual Momover navel-gazing when I have so much else on my plate.

And speaking of plates, kinda…

Faithful readers know I bought a NutriBullet a few months back, and have been pulverizing the bejesus out of all manner of fruits and veggies.

Well, well, well, lo and behold, I got a call from my internist’s office yesterday regarding the results of my annual physical, and it completely and totally flipped me out.

(I’ll connect the dots between the NutriBullet gizmo and me flipping out about the results of my physical in just one sweet second. Patience, please!)

First, the backstory: Even though you’re supposed fast before getting tested for cholesterol and blood sugar levels – and I’m well aware of this – not minutes before my 10 am appointment, I inhaled half a cinnamon raisin bagel with butter and jelly.

(I know, I know; A carby-sugary, textbook horrible way to start your day. But I was just so huuuuuungry. Still, I would have been so much better off cheating with one of my healthy NutriBullet concoctions at the crack of dawn rather than waiting until I was on the brink of starvation and grabbing something so nutritionally gruesome.)

Anyway, once I got in the exam room, I tried to pin the whole cinnamon raisin she-bang on my internist’s assistants:

Doc to Dana:

“You didn’t eat anything this morning, right? Because I want to check your cholesterol and blood sugar.”

Dana to Doc: 

“I did eat, actually. When I booked my appointment, no one reminded me about that.”

Doc to Dana:

“How many years have you been coming here for physicals? No one should have to remind you.”

OMG, can you believe the way he talks to me? So, so, sooooo sassy.

After another couple of fibs  - I told him I had “barely anything” for breakfast, and “hours ago,” to boot – Mr. Doc took the blood anyway.

“We might not get accurate results,” he said. “But if you ate ‘barely anything,’ and it was ‘hours ago,’ it could be okay.”

OMG, can you believe how skeptical he is? So, so, soooooo sassy.

Imagine my shock and dismay yesterday, when the phone rang as I was dutifully jack-hammering away on my massive project.

It was my internist’s assistant, calling to break some bad news: My blood sugar was slightly elevated – to 118.

Was that higher number because of the Situation Cinnamon Raisin? Or am I headed down the dastardly road to diabetes?

I won’t know until I take my next test.

Until then, I’m gonna cool it with with the carbs and sugar.

On the menu this morning: A NutriBullet-ed kale juice. No bananas, no strawberries, no blueberries to sweeten it up. Just kale and purified H20.

It isn’t remotely yummy, and I do not recommend it.

But for me, and my maybe-dodgy blood sugar, it’s the right thing to do.

 

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Today’s topic: The magic of self-discipline

Gigi and Yo = awww...

Gigi and Yolanda having a chat.

Which of you lovely ladies will cop to still being a die-hard Real Housewives of Beverly Hills-watcher, like moi?

Before I get rolling with the self-discipline theme of today’s post, I first have to give a special shout-out to my mommy-pal Mimi, who literally accosted Gigi Hadid in the street to welcome her to New York!

I love that level of fan-dom, and I am so with Mimi on that. In my circa-2010 last stint at W, we were all a little RHONY and RHONJ obsessed, so I got to concoct excuses to blog incessantly about all those broads.

Dina!!! Dana actually got to meet Dina!!!

Okay, onward to to the topic at hand: Self-discipline, and all the extreme awesomeness it confers.

Which brings me to the picture above.

If you saw that particular ep of RHOBH, you know that it’s the one in which Gigi has a Guess shoot in the desert, and her former-model-mommy Yolanda Foster shows up on set to chaperone – and give a pep talk about how the sacrifices Gigi is making for her burgeoning career are 1000 percent worth it.

I’m paraphrasing, but at some point in this heart-warming chit-chat, Yo says:

“It’s really hard to exercise six days a week. It’s really hard to avoid sugar.”

Amen, sister.

The desert tete-a-tete between Gigi and Yo was picked up again as part of a special “beauty secrets” clips package on Part 2 of the RHOBH reunion, and the Yolanda lead-in showed her inhaling the essence of – but not actually eating – fresh-baked bread at her ex-husband Mohammed’s house.

As I watched her sniffing away, I thought: Does that work? Because if it does, IT. IS. GENIUS.

There were other good takeaways from the clips package, like Kim’s obsession with green juices, and how hanging upside down, trapeze-style, is really good for your circulation. But it’s really Yolanda’s pep talk that’s permanently seared into my brain.

And I can’t help but think the fact that she’s Dutch might have something to do with her stick-to-it-tive-ness…

Currently I’m toggling between about 10 different books, and one I’m really loving is Forever Chic: French Women’s Secrets for Timeless Beauty, Style and Substance by Tish Jett.

I don’t want to put too fine a point on it, but when it comes to taking care of themselves, French women don’t eff around. According to Jett, they stick to their beauty routines come hell or high water, and they rarely over-indulge.

And when you think of it, isn’t that the best plan of attack?

Rather than saying to yourself: “To hell with it. I’m on vacay, so I’ll eat whatever I want and then deal with it when I get back home,” why not just nibble?

Or practice a system of checks and balances, à la, “I had pancakes for breakfast, so no dessert for dinner.”

I’m just thinking out loud here…mostly because I just went on vacation and completely lived it up on the food-and-drink front.

So now I have some damage to undo, and a pair of running shoes just waiting to be laced on. I’ll be channeling all those self-disciplined Dutch and French mamas as I plod along.

 

 

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Unhealthy: Comparing passport photos

Haunting images lurk within.

Haunting images lurk within.

I ask you:

Is there any more solid evidence – any more iron-clad, wholly tangible reminder – that time marches on than one’s growing stash of passports?

I answer you:

There is not.

Because I’ve been known to leave important matters until the last-possible nano-second, I’ve rush-processed all three of my last passports – the ones issued in my 20s, 30s and 40s.

Rush-processing of passports, as you can imagine, is an expensive – yet sometimes rewarding – little hobby.

It costs a bloody fortune, but then you have the new one in your hot little mitts immediately. And also you get to leave the passport office with your old one, too, the relevance of which I’ll get to in a moment…

Of course, rush-processing of passports doesn’t always go swimmingly. Which is why I’ve had to live with a misspelling of my middle name for the last decade. Although Hubby has gotten a kick out of calling me “Elziabeth” for the past 10 years, it has driven me mad to see that eff-up every time I’ve flipped open my little blue book.

If passports are meant to be the last word in personal identity verification, what does it say about my sense of self – my connection to, and place in, the universe – that mine was literally wrong for 10 years?

Which reminds me of the sorry state of my Oklahoma birth certificate, which doesn’t have the time of my official arrival on Planet Earth. Another tale of woe that I will briefly share with you before I – finally, elliptically, painfully – get to the real purpose of today’s blog post.

Sometime in my mid-30s, I became obsessed with having my astrological chart done. Yes, I’m a Scorpio, and there are reams of info about the specific quirks, traits and all-around-stellar-awesomeness of this particular sign.

But here’s the thing: Scorps are considered the “detective” of zodiac; we like to dig deep. So, in my never-ending, navel-gazing quest to know myself better, I wanted a soup-to-nuts chart.

Except you can’t have a soup-to-nuts chart done unless you know your time of birth. And by the time I decided I wanted one, my parents were both deceased. Thus no calling Mom or Pops and asking them to wrack (rack? I never know which one it is) their brains to try to remember the precise moment in which I graced the world with my presence.

So I did the next best thing: I called the Tulsa hospital where I was born, to see if they could shed some light. And after keeping me on hold for an interminable amount of time, here’s what the very polite and pleasant Hospital Lady said when she got back on the line:

“Ma’am, we have no record of you in our files. Are you sure you aren’t adopted?”

And here’s what I said, when I called my older sister 5 seconds later:

“I have a super-important, life-changing question for you, and it’s imperative that you not lie to me: Am I adopted?”

My sister, who long ago accepted both my self-obsession and insanity, calmly me assured that I am not, in fact, adopted. Which made me feel better, of course, but didn’t solve the problem of the fact that I can’t – ever, for as long as I shall live – have a proper chart done.

So now that I’m in full pity-party mode, I will gracefully segue to the true raison d’être of today’s post:

Passports are horrible, because if you gather them up and lay them all out, you see just how much you’ve aged from one decade to the next.

Of course if you’ve gotten tons of plastic surgery, or had tons of Botox or fillers injected into your mug – the latter of which I’ve considered, but totally backed out on, when push came to shove – your passport-viewing will not be such a stab to the proverbial heart.

But if you’ve just sort of gone about your life in a Regular Gal fashion – taking very good care of your skin with excellent products, but ix-naying the scalpels and needles – you can get seriously bummed when you crack open your stash.

This week, when I got my new passport, I stupidly did exactly that.

And then I went racing to my Beauty Armoire and dug out my untouched NuFace Trinity – along with the extra-credit Ele and Wrinkle Remover attachments.

I’d been meaning to try them for work, but hadn’t gotten around to it yet, for a few reasons: One: They’re gadgets, with instructions, and I am the world’s foremost Gadget + Instructions Spazz; Two, they require a sizeable investment of time to use correctly, which would cut into my knitting and RHONY-viewing; and Three, until this week, I hadn’t gotten the cattle-prod of a new passport to compare with all the previous ones.

Sidebar: Can we pls. discuss the new season of RHONY for a second???? Can you believe the ghost-writer accusations Aviva is hurling at Carole? Gag. Carole’s memoir is a heartbreaker, and beautifully written, and I’m not just saying that because of my girl-crush on her former bestie, the luminous CBK...

Back to my “Passport Face” sitch: I made my maiden voyage with the Trinity yesterday, and even popped on the Ele attachment for a spell.

I could swear I got a teensy weensy bit of immediate tightening. And Hubby inadvertently substantiated my theory. “You look great today,” he said, completely unsolicited, as we were heading out the door for our weekly date night.

But this morning, when I tried to dive into Session Two with my trusty Trinity, it quickly ran out of juice. So it’s in its “cradle” right now, recharging. And hopefully later it will be re-revved enough to help me turn back the hands of time.

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Dr. Phil is totally onto something here

Chic French women = reserved.

Super chic, smoking French women = reserved.

I must warn you, dear reader, that in today’s blog post, I’ll be pinging between two wildly disparate entities – two glamorous French bosses I reported in to for several years, and folksy ol’ Dr. Phil.

First the French bosses: There was one boy and one girl, and they were both incredibly smart, disciplined, cultured and easy on the eyes. I learned oodles from each of them – about the beauté business, about cloak and daggers office politics, about how to present to higher-ups in a polished but zingy way.

But the most important lesson I learned from them – by far – was to zip it, bébé.

Though the boy French boss said that one of the reasons he hired me was the fact that I was “reserved,” once we got into the nitty gritty of numerous top-secret projets, there was still room for improvement on the zip-it front.

The girl boss – the textbook definition of a drop-dead gorge femme d’une certain age –  led by example; chattering for the pure sake of chattering – you know, just to fill space and finesse the occasional awkward silence – was frowned upon, so I point-blank stopped doing it.

I became, in essence, a chatter-free zone.

But lo all these years later, here’s what I still find hard: Keeping a tight fence around personal info with non-boss type people I consider friends.

With people I actively dislike – or am indifferent to (a much larger slice of the people pie, mind you, than those I out-and-out detest) – I have no trouble telling them to bugger off.

OMG, there was a situation with one of our neighbors last year – a woman I had never met – who accosted me in front of the completely oblivious Wee Lass and said, “I hear you’re selling your apartment. Why? Don’t you like her school? Where are you moving to?”

I.

Went.

Ballistic.

For starters, the deal hadn’t closed yet, and we had wanted to wait to break the news to the Wee Lass when we were 100% sure it was actually going to happen. And even though we had every intention of staying in the ‘hood – and did – a move is a move. It’s traumatic, no matter how you slice it.

But beyond that, I had never met her before. I was floored by her audacity and completely pissed-off. So once we were out of earshot of the Wee Lass, I totally let this nosey neighbor broad have it.

She didn’t know what hit her; it was fierce.

But back to people I do like, and how folksy ol’ Dr. Phil figures into the equation.

Recently, I’d been mulling the idea that are levels of friends. A circle with several rings, like that really pretty planet. Which one is that again? Saturn?

The difference between Saturn and my Friend Planet, however, is that mine has several rings, not just one.

Historically, I’ve found myself over-sharing with the rings beyond my true inner circle – as if it were my civic duty to disclose. When I would run into old buds, buds I would see just a few times a year, I would automatically want to pull them closer by telling them what’s going on in my life. To take it even further, I would feel somehow feel fake, inauthentic – cold and impersonal –  if I didn’t spill the beans.

Now – and I totally have Dr. Phil to thank for this life-changing epiphany – I’ve come to believe that I don’t owe outer-circle buds all my personal intel.

Here’s how it all went down…

On a flight to Palm Beach for work a couple of weeks ago, I was flipping through the latest issue of O, and Dr. Phil’s column caught my eye.

The oh-so-charming headline: “Never miss a good chance to shut up!”

The main gist of his piece was that you lose some of your power when you flap your jaws. And I quote:

“Think about this: How often do you hear yourself talking just to fill silences? Do you ever discover that you’re revealing something you never intended to share just because you’re uncomfortable with a lull in the conversation? I want you to know that it’s perfectly okay to be quiet.”

After reading that, I had one mother of an Oprah-esque aha! moment:

With people you only see a few times a year, there ARE frequent lulls in the conversation. Why? Because you like each other, but you’re not that close. If you were closer, you’d weave each other into your lives on a more regular basis.

I used to be one of those lull-in-the-conversation hole-fillers.

But thanks to Dr. Phil – and by channeling my glamorous French bosses – I’m turning over a new privacy leaf. I’m gonna zip-it bébé, and keep it zipped.

 

 

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Getting + staying organized is an ongoing battle

I kinda sorta want one of these.

I kinda sorta want one of these.

OMG, OMG. So frustrated with myself. Grrr…

I first started writing this post circa 10 days ago (I know, I know, I’m so not bloggy lately…) And when I did, I was feeling pretty darn proud of myself.

Why? Because compared to last year, my annual frenzy of compiling my personal P + L for Hubby, who would in turn be meeting with our accountant to do our 2013 taxes, was going swimmingly.

In October, I’d gotten a head start on Project Personal P + L by attacking a small pile of Zip-Locs with a Sharpie. With my perfect handwriting (seriously, it’s amaze-balls – one work colleague said my penmanship looks like a font), I’d carefully labeled those little plastic baggies comme ça: Newspapers + Mags; Transpo; Business Meals; Office Supplies + Misc.

And within those Zip-Locs, I began stuffing millions of loose receipts that I’d been diligently collecting – despite the complete and utter pain-in-the-assiness of that endeavor – all year. Of course, loose receipts are just one piece of my financial puzzle; I also have to comb through my Amex and bank statements to get the whole picture of how I managed to spend every last dime of my hard-earned (very, very hard-earned) moolah over the last 12 months.

Along with my Luddite plastic baggy set-up, last fall I also created a positively banging new file system. Truly, it is a thing of sheer beauty. And again, my perfect penmanship figures prominently. Who needs an expensive label-maker that you never really figured out how to operate (Gadget Spazz, thy name is Momover Lady) when you can just craft fabulous ones by hand?

Every year – EVERY. SINGLE. YEAR. – after I send Hubby off to the accountant with an [allegedly] complete recap of my expenses, I find stray receipts that I didn’t include. Some years, there’s a sizeable stack. Others, just a handful.

But I thought this year – after my October head start, after the Zip-Locs, the Sharpie and the new filing system with the perfectly penned labels – would be different.

And this morning, of course after Hubby’s sit-down with our money guy, I was going through a stack a papers and found about 5 receipts that should’ve factored into Project Personal P + L.

Totaled up, do those receipts amount to much? No. But that isn’t the point. The point is I thought I had it together on the filing front.

And clearly, I still don’t.

 

 

 

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Success. Experience. Humor. (Love!)

Dolce Press card. So very purty.

Dolce Press word search card. Purty.

Yes, it’s February 17 but screw it – in the further recesses of my Mommy Barbie brain, I’m still thinking about Xmas and New Year’s.

My rationale for mentally clinging to hollies gone by is a three-parter.

Brace yourself, dear reader.

PART ONE: In which I publicly own up to unspeakably – shockingly! –  bad manners 

There’s just no way to sugarcoat this: I s-t-i-l-l haven’t written Thank You cards for the many beauteous gifts I received circa December. My personal record for latest-ever Xmas Thank Yous is July, so I figure I still have a little wiggle room. And besides, I never merely write a lame “Merci for the cadeau, Love Dana” missive; rather I endeavor to tell the gifter precisely and exactly how I’ve been using said prezzie in the shocking amount of time that has elaspsed since I received said prezzie.

But believe me, I know I’m kidding myself that a more detailed, nuanced, genuine Thank You trumps one sent in a timely manner. I am officially horrible.

PART TWO: In which I cop to not meditating a few days since January 1

Compared to the ghastly Thank You sitch above, I feel only a little bit bad about this. I really want to make daily meditation a habit, and I’ve absolutely made strides on that front. But I don’t think I’m quite at the point of mentally berating myself if I’ve missed two whole days out of the last six weeks. What’s important is that I get right back up on that horse again and ride, baby.

PART THREE: In which I celebrate a little gem found in my overstuffed InBox 

I’m sure most of you received – either electronically or via good-old fashioned snail mail (my delivery service of choice once I finally get around to penning my Thank Yous) – one of those super-groovy word-search holiday cards like the one pictured here.

Essentially, at least with the electronic version, you’re meant to seize upon the first three words your eyes go to. These three words – whatever they are – will then inform the rest of your year.

Happily, my three key words for 2014 are, in this order:

Success

Experience

Humor 

That just makes me really psyched. Cartwheel-psyched. I like all of that stuff. In fact, I l-o-v-e all of that stuff.

Okay, time to go meditate and write a few detailed, nuanced, genuine Thank Yous.

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OMG, I really gotta get off gluten

I see buckets of this in my future.

I see quinoa in my future.

I’ve known for a while – years actually, if I’m being honest, and I like being honest, because being honest totally leads to good karma – that in the interest of firing up my unspeakably lame, underperforming thyroid, I should scale waaaaaaaaaaaay back on gluten.

Wellness god Frank Lipman was the first to plant the “gluten is the devil” seed in my ear, circa 2011. But since then, loads of other health gurus whose opinion I trust – including Susan Blum – have talked vicious smack about gluten.

But here’s what I hate lately: People whinging on (man, I so love that word…whinging) that taking an anti-gluten stance is trendy. That it’s the food fad du jour.

There’s nothing remotely trendy about about shedding light on what is essentially a manufactured robo-protein created to make completely shitty-for-you bread and cupcakes spongier and springier, and stay “fresh” for a lot longer than Mama Nature intended.

Seriously: gluten stems from the Latin – via French – word for glue.

Blech, right? I don’t see us tucking into a big ol’ bowl of Elmer’s. And yet, gluten is in EVERY. THING. It’s wicked hard to avoid it.

If I sound like I’m furious at gluten, that’s because I am. For two reasons:

1. In the days directly after eating it, my thyroid-related fatigue is off the charts. And I detest feeling tired. I still force myself to do everything I need / want to do, including working out. But it’s a bigger struggle, and I’m not big on struggle. I like easy.

2. Steering clear of gluten makes me sad. That’s because I kinda really love carby, bready, pasta-y stuff. But this morning, I was happy to read on HuffPost that quinoa is a gluten-free grain.

I guess that’s something to cheer about. Right? Yay quinoa. Grrr…

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DRIVEN: Meditation is helping my driving, big-time

Calm is good. V v good.

Calm is good. Calm is very good. Calm is amazing.

Ooh, just noticed it’s Groundhog Day! Love Groundhog Day!

Did Punxsutawny Phil see his shadow?

Will we have six more weeks of winter?

Drat – according to this on-the-scenes report from The Washington Post, ol’ Fuzzy Phil did in fact see his shadow when he scampered above ground, briefly, to grace us with his presence. Thus we are saddled with oodles more bundling up against brrrr arctic temperatures.

Still, I feel happy. Because no how you slice it, six weeks beats the living you-know-what out of the five-plus months of winter we were staring down in early October. In my neck of the woods, there’s a lot of winter. And Momover Lady abhors winter. She detests it…

Okay, onto more resolutely cheerful topics: Namely, the fact that I drove yesterday – with Hubby riding shotgun – and it was actually borderline pleasant and not too scary at all.

Compared to my last attempt at this a month ago – a white-knuckled 50-mile highway jaunt home from Great Wolf Lodge in the Poconos – yesterday’s trip from Jersey City to the multiplex in Edgewater was easy, and normal, and not at all detrimental to my marriage.

I have a few thoughts as to why that might be, which I will now share:

1. It was a much shorter trip. As in probably 30 miles shorter.

2. It’s a trip I’ve taken, as a passenger, roughly 50 times over the last six years. (We go to the movies a lot and the Edgewater multiplex is never crowded.) Ergo, I know this route like the back of my proverbial hand.

3. As my numero uno New Year’s Resolution, I’ve been meditating every day since January 1. And without getting too hyperbolic and overstatement-y, the simple fact that I’ve been disciplining myself to do that every day – no matter what – is already having profound changes on my overtaxed Mommy Barbie brain. Yes, profound. There, I said it.

I’m guessing that what the meditation is helping me with is twofold: One, it’s calming me down, which is crucial to this relearning-to-drive jazz. Two, it’s helping me both aware and non-judgmental.

The aware part: Yes, I did notice – in the periphery of my big blue eyeballs – Hubby clutching his thighs in an I’m-freaking-out manner whenever he thought I was driving too fast or getting too close to the car in front of us. But that’s all I did. I noticed.

The non-judgmental part: After clocking Hubby’s freak-outs, I didn’t take it to the next level and start mentally berating myself, à la…You know what? I’ve just decided not to do the “à la” bit. You don’t need to read my Negative Self-Talk. Negative Self-Talk is bullshit. Negative Self-Talk is the devil’s spawn, the root of all evil.

The point is, thanks to a mere month of dedicated meditation practice, my driving-related Self-Talk has already swung from Negative to Positive.

That’s good news. Very good news. Amazing news.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Yay! I’ve been meditating like a banshee

I'm thinking I might need this CD

I’m thinking I might need this CD.

“They” – the ever-mysterious, all-knowing “they” – say that a high percentage of New Year’s Res-makers bail on their resolutions circa January 17.

That’s not even a full three weeks into the whole self-improvement she-bang.

While I don’t want to get cocky, I do want to give myself a symbolic high-five. Of my three key 2014 pledges to myself – to meditate and dry-brush my skin every day, and systematically tackle my NUTs* – my track record with the far most important one (hint: it isn’t the dry-brushing) is stellar thus far.

*NUTs refresher course: These are Nagging Unfinished Tasks. I have oodles of NUTs in my life, ranging from teensy annoying ones like sewing missing buttons to huuuuuuuuuge whoppers like becoming a confident driver.

Dry-brushing refreshing course: It’s super-relaxing, “polishes” your skin to a fare-thee-well, and may or may not boost your lymph circulation. But I had to take a little breakie from it, because I was too aggressive, and my poor scrubbed-raw bod started to rebel. I think I either need to be more gentle, or scale back to about three times a week.

Back to the meditation thing, and why I’m so so so so so happy that I’ve been disciplined about this.

In short, it helps with everything else. EVERYTHING. ELSE.

Although I’m pretty sure what I do isn’t technically meditation – yet – and is much closer to imagery / visualization with the aid of some type of nature soundtrack in the form of crashing waves or crackling lightning, it’s definitely still building that meditation muscle.

That’s because I’m sticking to a routine: I turn off the lights wherever I am, plop down with my with trusty CD player and earphones, click on whatever soundtrack I’m loving at the moment – right now it’s “Rain and Thunder” by Lifescapes – and just breathe and focus.

Breathe, breathe, breathe. Focus, focus, focus.

I stop breathing, I stop focusing – bam! I bring my mind back to the breathing and the focusing.

And I’ve been doing it everywhere, including hotel rooms. In the past 20 days, I’ve spent 5 nights in hotels – with Hubby and the Wee Lass, IN. ONE. ROOM. – and I still manage to slip off to the loo to meditate.

Is it glamorous meditating in the loo? No. Would I rather be meditating elsewhere? Without question.

But I’m serious about this. I want to stick with it. Sticking with it is the only way I’ll get better at it, and reap its many, many bennies.

The Numero Uno benny: Feeling like I can handle whatever life tosses at me.

I can already tell that I’m feeling mentally stronger, more resilient, less prone to freaking out.

Case in point: I flew this weekend, and I was one cool cucumber, even when the captain came on and warned us of “substantial turbulence up ahead.”

Trust me when I tell you that if I hadn’t been meditating these past three weeks, I would have been gobbling Xanax like nobody’s business.

I love that, thanks to my meditating diligence, I’m a Xanax-free zone.

 

 

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DRIVEN: Highway to hell (Kidding.) (Kinda.)

Weird, but hopefully helpful.

Weird, but hopefully helpful.

Accountability. Such a big, terrifying ol’ word.

But terror aside, accountability can be deeply awesome. Because when you make yourself publicly accountable for some action you want to take, there’s a higher likelihood you’ll actually do it.

At least I think that’s the case. Evidently there’s debate about this; I’ve read a few studies which posit that sometimes making a public declaration of intention makes us less likely to follow through. The theory is that saying you’re going to do something feels like you’re actually doing it, so motivation goes right out the window.

Anyway, for argument’s sake – and because it’s 6:27 in the morning and I’ve been awake since 3:45, grrrr times a trillion – let’s just go with Theory One:  ”Public declaration makes you actually do the stuff you say you’re gonna do.”

For me, personally, this blog keeps me honest.

Like when I said I wanted to exercise 200 times in 2010. I got so freaking close – 195 workouts. Yay me.

More recently, I declared that I would share the driving duties on our holiday trip to Great Wolf Lodge in the Poconos.

And trust me when I tell you that, when push came to shove – and I was actually confronted with making good on that promise – I freaked a little. At least internally. I didn’t have any visible-to-others meltdown. I just got increasingly anxious, because of my FOD (Fear Of Driving).

While he absolutely does want me to get over my FOD already, Hubby was indifferent about my partaking in the driving duties for the Great Wolf trek. In fact, I might even go so far as to say that he wasn’t especially keen on it. And why would he be, really? He drives confidently, and super-aggressively, and gets us everywhere we need to go in a fast and furious manner.

But since I’d stated, right here on this itty bitty website, that I would do it, I did.

It was hard. And scary. Like four-lane-highway scary.

And I have to also say that there’s a world of difference between cruising along serenely with Driving Instructor Danny at my right (with his trusty instructor-side brake at the ready) and white-knuckling it with Hubby in the passenger’s seat.

I love Hubby. Hubby rocks as both a Hubby and a Papa Bear.

But he’s impatient – and yell-y and scream-y and condescending-y – in life-threatening situations. Such as me behind the wheel of a sizeable SUV, on a new-to-us four-lane highway, FOR. THE. FIRST. TIME. EVER.

In hindsight, it was insane for me to try to make the leap between my first time driving our “big, strong car” (that’s what the Wee Lass used to call it when she was a toddler, so so so so cute) and the second.

The first time: Crawling, slowly and carefully, home to our Jersey City pad from Liberty State Park.

The second time: White-knuckling it on a scary four-lane highway to the Poconos we’d never been on before.

I need to explore the middle ground between slow crawls and 70 mph. Translation: More wheel-time is needed on medium-sized jaunts, maybe in a 20-mile radius of home base. I’ve done that on all my lessons with Driving Instructor Danny, but now I need to do them by myself.

Sidebar: I also need to commit to listening to the verrrrrrrrrrrry strange self-hypnosis CD pictured here, which I nabbed on Amazon a few months ago.

I’ve tried it a few times. But it requires a pretty hefty time commitment, and I’m totally, totally, totally back into listening to my precious ocean meditation CD again. Swoon. Lordy, I love that thing. It’s embedded with theta brainwaves, so it practically meditates for you.

Meditating. Self-hypnotizing. Theta brainwaves. It’s getting über-crunchy in Momover World.

 

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