Plenty Woman Newsletter
October 30, 2016
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15 Random Things to Tell You About

When I was visiting family in Texas last week, my mom’s cousin pulled out a book on DeSoto history (a rural community in Dallas where the family goes way back). I mention it because something in it inspired what I’m doing in today’s newsletter.

In the book there’s a copy of a clipping from an old DeSoto newspaper that was a weekly round-up of miscellaneous news about members of the community.

To give you an example of what I’m talking about, it said something like this about one of my relatives:

“Pearl Grimes has had a sore throat for the past 3 days.”

I won’t be quite that succinct in the following tidbits of things, but you get the idea.

(I should also give props to The Bloggess who did something similar recently in a piece on random topics she’d meant to blog about but never did. Yes, I want to give her credit for inspiring me, but mostly I want you to check out her blog. (She’s hilarious and writes a lot about her own anxiety.)

Anyway, here goes:

  1. I beat myself up pretty badly a couple of weeks about a mistake I made and tried to fix but couldn’t completely take back. Getting out of town helped me get over it, but so did the passage of time and new things to worry about. Sometimes all we can do is feel like shit about something until we feel better.
  2. Speaking of feeling like shit until we feel better, Andy just finished his second round of a new autoimmune treatment called immunoglobulin. It’s an intravenous treatment 3 to 5 hours a day, 4 days in a row every month. I don’t know how he does it. I don’t mean the treatment (though I know it’s rough on him), but feeling tired and/or sick pretty much every day and still managing to keep his spirits high (and mine) most of the time.
  3. I did a 5K walk for the National Alliance on Mental Illness on October 1st. For reasons too lengthy to go into here, my team didn’t end up walking together. My socially-anxious self was happy to avoid meeting new people that day (as I didn’t actually know anyone on my team), but my self-conscious self was a little uncomfortable walking that distance alone. But before I went to “the bad place” I was able to remind myself I wasn’t alone. As I sped-walk to the finish line (the luxury of walking solo), I kept in mind the family and friends who had helped me raise $600 for the cause.
  4. My social anxiety got the best of me at a wedding in September (not to be confused with the October wedding, which went much better). I wrote about it here – Runaway Wedding Guest: When Social Anxiety Attacks.
  5. Now and then lately I’ve been doing chores first thing in the morning. At first I thought it was just to procrastinate work, but what I love even more is the meditation. Cleaning first thing, I’m not caught up in a dozen thoughts trying to pull me somewhere else. When I’m doing the dishes, I’m just doing the dishes.
  6. I got one of those pet drinking fountains for my cat Spanky because he was sick and I was worried he wasn’t drinking enough water. He was leery of the fountain at first, then just downright dismissive. He hasn’t used it once but I’m not taking it back. It’s pretty white porcelain that doesn’t look like it’s made for pets and it’s like having the comfort of a babbling brook in my living room.
  7. Before I knew he was sick, I thought Spanky was just getting grumpy in his old age. Now that he’s feeling better and closer to his normal self, I know he was just feeling bad. How many times must I be reminded that the way someone acts, be it cat or human, is more complicated than I know?
  8. Just when I thought my election anxiety couldn’t get any worse, there is this. I got a Vote By Mail ballot that I don’t remember requesting. I don’t want to use it because I like going to the polls on the day. Plus, I’m worried about it getting lost or delayed in the mail. The instructions say I can trade it in for a regular ballot at the polling place so that’s what I’m planning. But now I’m worried the workers there won’t know the rules (I’m sorry for doubting you, polling place workers) and will make me fill out a provisional ballot that won’t get counted right away. All of that said, I do think I’m getting more stoic about the whole thing. Whatever happens, happens. In Andy’s words after listening to me rattle on about yesterday’s election news at midnight last night in bed, no matter who wins, we will [fingers crossed] survive. (I added “fingers crossed.” Baby steps.)
  9. Speaking of election anxiety, I wrote this for The Huffington Post when I saw #FakeTrumpVictims trending on Twitter a couple of weeks back: I Didn’t Report Sexual Assault 28 Years Ago, But That Doesn’t Mean It Didn’t Happen.
  10. I’m finally getting used to the 10 or so pounds I put on this year. It was easy to love on my face; it filled out some creases and makes me look younger, I think. It’s been tougher to love on my middle but the more body positive images I see on social media, the easier it gets.
  11. Besides Thanksgiving with Andy’s parents and Christmas with my family in Phoenix, I have zero social plans before the New Year and I hope to keep it that way. I’m telling myself it’s because I deserve a break from all the socializing of late, but maybe it’s just an excuse I’m using to hide away.
  12. What I am planning is my first staycation. If I can work ahead to take 4 days off to go to Texas, I can work ahead to take a week off to stay at home and do nothing. And by nothing, I mean yoga, meditation, and “fun” writing that I don’t have to finish for months, years, or ever.
  13. I’ve been slowing down lately. The bad news is, I can’t seem to stop it. The good news is, I can’t seem to stop it.
  14. Weeks ago we broke a branch off our zebra plant and stuck it in water. It laid there limp and never rooted but I couldn’t bring myself to throw it out. One, because I was lazy. And two, because the internet said it should work. A week or two ago, I stopped kidding myself and went to throw it away. Lo and behold, there was a root. The leaves are perky now. Sometimes it just takes a while before we see growth.
  15. Then comes the time when leaves must fall. Let go of the old on a walk through the woods in my new 7-minute guided meditation: Fall Leaves.

Happy Halloween, my friends,


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