Friday, September 23, 2011

Big Time

I have been slightly giddy since about 3 p.m. yesterday when I learned that an article I had written was picked up by The Huffington Post. For a writer trying to build freelance credibility, showing up on a national forum like this is a pretty big deal. Here’s a little background:

I recently got in touch with a former coworker who is the managing editor for a new young, professional women’s website, The Daily Muse. They were soliciting articles and since I don’t have the opportunity to write much in my actual job, getting to flex my skills is something I welcome.

The first piece I pitched was on something I know all too well: lessons from being a job hopper. As most of you know, I’ve had more than my fair share of jobs over the years. Yes, the reasons may be valid, but I’m not unaware of how it comes off to hiring managers. However, I also think it’s not as bad as it would have been even 10 years ago. Plus, I have learned a lot and I figured there were others out there, especially young women just starting off in their careers, who could benefit from what I now know.

The article was posted on The Daily Muse site Wednesday, which was enough for me! But then yesterday I was informed by the editor that it was also posted on Huffington Post. The site also has a partnership Forbes and Business Insider. The Daily Muse sends them their articles and some get selected for syndication. Hooray! I’m not holding my breath, but if it were to show up on Forbes, I would die.

I’m already working on my next article for The Daily Muse and I’m excited to have an outlet to do what I love. If I can gain some additional exposure and help build my portfolio, then perhaps my dream of being an actual freelance writer isn’t as far off as it seems!

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Just not feeling it

I’m having an off week. Even though I can see and feel results from the medication, diet and exercise, my motivation is really low right now. After a kick-ass weekend of multiple work outs, I have since wilted. I’m blaming it on a few things:

1.    The ridiculously large and painful blister on the back of my heel that bloodied my sock during cardio on Sunday. Ew and ouch.
2.    P.M.S. (The periods are to help emphasize how strongly I am feeling this).
3.    Overall sense of fatigue and low morale.
4.    Lingering sense of grief that I can't shake.

I’m pretty sure #3 is directly related to #2 and that it will all fade in a few days. I went to the gym on Tuesday as scheduled, but only did about 20 minutes of half-assed cardio because I was both tired and my blister was super sensitive. I have an appointment with my trainer tonight and although I’m going to go, I have a feeling it will be another low-effort session, or at least as low-effort as he’ll let it.

As for the diet … fail. I have had two TINY pieces of cake this week (thanks a lot, coworkers!) and additional other carbs I should avoid. I have also had two whole sodas. That is as “bad” as I have been since I started. Again, blaming the PMS. I HAD to have McDonald’s French fries last night instead of turkey tacos on wheat tortillas. It was imperative. J doesn’t fall for this “excuse” but until he knows what it feels like, I will continue to ignore his comments pertaining to this matter.

I don’t want to reverse any of the progress I have made so I’m hoping that I can get back on track in the next day or so. Actually, it will probably have to wait until Sunday. Saturday is football and that equals beer. It’s just a fact. BUT … I probably won’t do the spin class and two-mile walk before indulging like I did last week.

I know most of you don’t answer when I try to start a discussion but I’ll try again anyway. I am nothing if not persistent: When you lose your motivation, what helps you push through or do you give in for a bit and then just get ramped up again?

Monday, September 12, 2011

Heavy heart

So here’s my latest thought on parenthood: While I know there are so very many wonderful things that having children brings into your life, there can also be great sadness. I was reminded of this grim fact last week when I received the news that the 12-year-old son of my friend was a victim in the flooding in Northern Virginia.

My friend is actually my 10th grade English teacher, who I adored. We’ve kept in touch some over the years and I am an avid reader of her blog, An Inch of Gray. I never met her son, but felt somehow connected to him and the rest of her family through her posts. Regardless, I was filled with such deep sadness upon hearing of their loss. In fact, it’s all I have been able to think about and I can't even pinpoint why it has affected me so greatly.

My heart has been heavy with grief and my head lost in thought. Those thoughts range from wondering how the family begins to cope with this tragedy to how scared he must have been when he first got caught in the flood. I then turn to thoughts about how having a child is voluntarily setting yourself for potential loss and it frightens me a little. I know that’s not how you should think, but in light of what has happened, I can’t help it.

It won’t stop us from our quest to become parents, but it does make me pause for a moment and remember that all life is truly a gift and we must be grateful for every day we spend with those we love.

My thoughts continue to go out to the family as they start to put the pieces back together.

Friday, September 2, 2011

Quick Update

OK, so we're about just about a month  into this whole diet/exercise/medication thing and I thought I would give you an update. We'll start with the good things:
  • I have actually made it to the gym 3 times each week. I don't hate it quite as much as before.
  • I've lost about 5 pounds and am fitting into some pants I haven't been able to wear in a while.
  • My soda cravings are fewer and far between.

Now, here are the not so good things:
  • I'm still not great about the diet. Definitely making smarter choices more often, but not always.
  • My medicine actually makes me feel pretty sick most days. Hoping that will fade away ... STAT.
  • My trainer has decided I can do more than I say I can. Yesterday's session kicked my jiggly butt.

With the exception of the side effects of the medicine, I think things are going well overall. I have another two months before my insulin/glucose numbers are checked again and I may be able to get off the medicine at that time, but the diet and exercise will remain ongoing staples to keep me heading toward better health.

Thanks to friends and family who have been supportive. I truly appreciate it! And by the way, since no one officially commented on the hair, I'm going to assume you all just loved it. Might go even redder next time ;)