Swamped September

September shaped up to be another busy month. It was full of good things – new experiences, bonding with friends, and work events. Unfortunately hurricanes and natural disasters took away a lot of “good things” for many, many people. Reflecting on this, trying to put myself in others’ shoes, has helped me to be more gracious about what I have (both material and non-material). If I’m struggling with a bad day, I focus on shifting my perspective and offer up a prayer to those who are going through much worse situations than I am.
NYC Trip/US Open – seeing all the sites and eating all the pizza!
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2017-09-03 16.10.43

2017-09-03 19.02.55

Labor Day
My first time in College Station & my first Aggie football game
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Work team retreat
Stephanie’s (my college roommate) post-elopement reception
2017-09-22 21.02.15
Brunch with my roommates
2017-09-24 13.49.08
First day of autumn – my favorite season
Kept busy with work events
Movies/TV
Arrested Development, Season 1
Call the Midwife, Season 2
The Zookeepers Wife
Wimbledon
Books
The Weekenders by Mary Kay Andrews

October Goals:
Read more
Reconnect with several friends I haven’t seen in months
Train for the 5K I’m doing next month (up to 2 miles at a time)
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May Memories

I decided to take a break from my daily personal growth exercise to catch you up on what else has been going on in my life. If you’ve been following along with my blog then you know that I am overdue for a monthly review! Last month was full of many blessings and opportunities for personal growth. I have continued to move forward with hope despite the frustration of being unemployed. I do so by making the most of my time off, doing things that would be harder to do if I had a full-time job. As you will see, I’ve been doing so with family, friends, traveling, and spending more time reading.

Me and my boyfriend J’s 3 month anniversary – he isn’t an OU fan, but was a good sport when I gave him the bag

2017-05-03 11.55.13

Cinco de Mayo

Church women’s retreat – Christ Renews his Parish (CRHP)

2017-05-07 15.56.16

Mom’s surgery

2017-05-12 09.24.02

Mother’s Day. I took my mom for an early mani and pedi since she was out of town recovering from her procedure

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Dallas Arboretum

2017-05-13 16.17.03

Hair cut

2017-05-16 10.59.55

10 year anniversary of when I graduated high school…

Top Golf to celebrate J’s brother’s birthday

Family birthday celebrations – J’s brother and nephew

2017-05-21 17.21.45

I started taking Zumba classes at my local gym

2017-05-27 00.51.35

Chicago/Lake Geneva, WI trip with my boyfriend to visit some of his old roommates for Memorial Day weekend

2017-05-27 10.39.01

2017-05-27 12.08.00

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2017-05-28 11.40.36

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More dead-end job interviews…

Brother and sister-in-law visited from GA. I hadn’t seen them since the beginning of January and, as my brother and I are close, I was excited that they could finally meet my boyfriend (P.S. my brother approves!) We all had fun at the Ranger’s game together.

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Movies/TV

Parks & Recreation, Seasons 6​-7

MacFarland

Finding Dory

Grey’s Anatomy, Season 13

Books

The Children by Ann Leary

The Assistants by Camille Perri

The Silver Star by Jeanette Walls​

Food Freedom Forever​ by Melissa Hartwig

The Night Circus By Erin Morgenstern

Day eight: beating fear

When was the last time you did something you were afraid of?

Anxiety is fear. I have anxiety. So much so that I take medication for it. Weaning myself off of it/trying to become less dependent on the pills makes me anxious. There are times when breathing, praying, yoga, etc. still can’t calm my brain. I think it’s safe to say that my anxiety can take over my life. It’s pretty constant, but there are certain situations that cause my heart to race more than others. One of them being group settings. Hello, social anxiety!

fear

The past 5 months I have been making major strides in putting myself out there. I began going to a young adult program at a new church where I knew NO ONE. I started volunteering for a new ministry event that they were putting on and ended up meeting my boyfriend because of it (I like to think of him as my “reward” for making myself vulnerable).

Dating my very social boyfriend means that I have met a LOT of new people. I hate small talk (but I feel like I’m slowly getting better at making actual connections with people) and going to back-to-back group events with family and friends doesn’t seem as exhausting it was in the beginning. However, as an introvert, I still need time where it is just the two if us to recharge.

My boyfriend had mentioned a retreat that he went on several years ago and the positive impact it made on his life. He kept encouraging me go on it as well and to sign up when the next one was announced. I kept brushing it off, telling him that I am sure it’s a great experience, but I didn’t feel ready. Long story short, I ended up going on the retreat last month. I honestly didn’t even want to go. Again, I didn’t know anyone or anything about the format. It ended up being a life-altering experience that I am beyond  grateful that I pushed through my “fear of the unknown” to go.

Though the retreat was wonderful, I still struggle going to our weekly “retreat team” meetings. I am still mentally processing all of the emotions that I experienced throughout that weekend. Hearing other people’s stories each week can be tough and emotionally draining. Listening to them also tends to drudge up issues from my past that I wish would just go away already. But that’s how you grow, right? Facing fear head on. No hiding.

fear 2

Yes, I would be afraid to go skydiving, get a tattoo, and drive in a 200 mph race car. Those are fears – I’ll call them “outer fears.” I admire people who do those things whether they are fearless or it takes them courage to follow through. Just because my fears might be “inner fears,” doesn’t make them any less scary than “outer fears.”

Overcoming both are huge milestones to be celebrated. Every time we do something that we are afraid of (within reason) we prove to ourselves how strong we are and gain the confidence to continue challenging ourselves and moving forward.

When was the last time you conquered something that you were afraid of?

P.S. Thanks for keeping up with my personal growth exercise!

Onwards & Upwards…

April Showers

April

Began counseling (again)

Lunch out with my co-workers

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The Porch, Dallas

Young Women’s retreat through my church

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Rain, lots of rain & lovely spring weather

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2016-04-11 18.01.44

Springtime in Texas

2016-04-14 11.49.51

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Colored my hair

2016-04-22 21.02.52

Earth Day Dallas with my Mom

2016-04-23 13.14.38
Fair Park, Dallas

Two year anniversary working at my current job (never thought that would happen)

TV/Movies
Scandal, Season, season 5
Grey’s Anatomy, season 12
House of Cards, season 4
The Family
Age of Adelaide
Fuller House, season 1
Daddy’s Home
 
Books

My Brilliant Friend by Elena Ferrante

Big Little Lies by Liane Moriarty

The Opposite of Everyone by Joshilyn Jackson

Was your April full of showers or rainbows?