BEEP! BEEP! BEEP!
“Just ten more minutes, Mom.”
The faint sound of snoring wafted out through the tear in the wall and blended in with the hustle and bustle on the outside.
“WHAT THE WHAT?!” Ella shot up, throwing her blankets across her body, banking off the wall opposite her.
“Oh. Em. Gee! It’s here! Today’s the day!” Slamming her hand down on the alarm clock next to her, she bounced out of bed. She stopped in front of her mirror and took in her form, thrilled that it would be the last time she’d ever see it.
She looked at every curve, every bump, and every roll. Whispering a silent goodbye and imagining what she would look like after it happened. Would she have a new shape? What color would she be? What kind of design would she have? …
We all have those moments in our lives that can make or break us. Most of us have had several of them. And if you haven’t had yours yet, I promise you it’s on the way.
Me, I’m with the crowd. I’ve had quite a few over my 45 years. But the last one was a turning point for me. It was the first time I kept my own power and didn’t sink into a deep well of depression, self-doubt, and self-loathing.
A few weeks ago, I had a short trip planned that involved a flight to the West Coast. Because of the airport security changes after 9/11, I have streamlined my process to make the whole flying experience quick and easy, not only for me but for TSA. …
I sucked at life, and I have ever since I can remember. Every decision I made ended up being the wrong one.
I had a scholarship to George Washington University. I was accepted to UC Santa Barbara. But because I was rejected by my first choice, Brown University, I threw it all away and chose the University of Rochester. Why? Because Rochester was the name of Jack Benny’s butler/chauffeur/house cleaner/cook/errand boy and Jack Benny was my favorite comedian.
Yea, I get how stupid that sounds.
As a native San Franciscan, I soon realized how much I hated the weather in upstate New York. I could only stand it for a year and raced home after my freshman year. Believing I had to have a college degree to get anywhere in life, I tried to do the work and school thing at a few local colleges and even online colleges, but my head was so implanted up my ass that it never worked. …
My relationship with money has been toxic, to say the least. It’s so bad, can I save it? Is there a chance, even a glimmer of hope, that Money and I can reconcile? Can we have our happily ever after? Our ride off into the sunset?
If you asked me a few years ago, I would have said, “HELL NO!” Even a few months ago, I wasn’t so sure. But today? Today, I feel so much more optimistic.
But how can I explain to Money that this time is different? …
Why are you such a fuck-up?
Why are you the way you are?
Who do you think you are?
I hate you.
For the past 35-ish years, I have hated myself. I was loath to look at myself in the mirror. I did everything I could and then some to change me so the world would accept me, like me, even love me.
I hated myself because I wasn’t beautiful and sexy. Other women would give me that head to toe scan of disapproval. Men looked through me.
The single-digit sized clothing never fit. I had curves. My body was squishy. …
For as long as I can remember, I have always wanted someone to tell me what to do in my life, like what choices to make, what path to take. But I wanted the best, someone like Gandalf, Dumbledore, Obi Wan Kenobi, or Yoda. You know, the guy with all the right answers.
There was no way I could be my own guide. How could I possibly know the answers to my questions? I was constantly making the wrong choices. I had no experience, except with failure. I had nothing to show for the last 45 years of living. I had to find someone else to show me the way. …
For as long as I can remember, money has been a major character in the story of my life. Sometimes he was the hero. At times, the villain. More often than not, he was a dirty rotten bastard.
Looking back, I can call him by three names:
The Decider, The Party Guy, and The Enforcer.
As a kid, money decided what I could do and what I couldn’t do. And every time, he decided against me.
I always wanted to have the newest toys and coolest clothes as my classmates had, but because we didn’t have a lot of money, the Decider said no. …
Money has always been an enigma for me. Growing up, it was never directly a part of the conversation. It was more like a passive-aggressive participant, controlling what I could and couldn’t do. God forbid I asked someone how much they made at their job, and no one ever openly talked about it.
In fact, people used euphemisms to describe their state of prosperity or lack thereof. When people didn’t have money, they were a little short, scraping by or pinching pennies. When the money was flowing, they were considered well-off, loaded, and living high on the hog.
When I entered the workforce, I never had a clue of what I should make because I never even thought of what I could make or what I wanted to make a year. It wasn’t until my coach, Brooke Castillo, asked me if I ever stopped to consider how much DO I really want to make a year. And that’s when I discovered that I am an underearner. …
This is definitely not the only way to create more intimacy, and it’s not the most fun. However, it is the easiest way.
It’s simple, and yet most of us don’t do it.
Early on in our relationship, my honey and I agreed on the no cell phone rule. On dates, we kept our phones turned off or left them at home. The only time we were allowed to have it on was if we were expecting an urgent call. And to be honest, those times were and still are few and very far between.
Since then, I’ve noticed our intimacy level has increased and deepened in ways I have never experienced with anyone before. I know he feels the same because we’ve talked about it. He may attribute it to other things besides our no cell phone rule but he definitely sees the benefits powering down has for our relationship. …
Books have always been a part of my life. Everyone in my family read to me as a child. By the time kindergarten came around, I was already reading at a 2nd-grade level.
Trips to the library and the used bookstore were my favorite treat over a sundae at our local Baskin-Robbins ice cream shop. In fact, I had a running list of all the books I wanted to get whenever I had the opportunity.
And in grammar school, we could order books each month from Scholastic Books. When they arrived, it was like Christmas morning every month.
As I grew older, I was never without a book, and I couldn’t leave a bookstore without dropping at least $100. I did stop checking books out of the library. Not because I didn’t want to support the library, but because I never wanted to return my books. Possession is nine-tenths of the law, right? …