So incredibly ready for the holidays! Always grateful for the awesomeness of Thanksgiving but definitely ready for a few weeks of "down" time around Christmas.
Highlights of late and of the upcoming weeks?!
1) As of the week before Christmas, I'll be officially done with massage school....and I plan on taking a few weeks off to enjoy having all my siblings together for the first time in I don't know how long. My brother and his family are driving out from Denver and it's been FIVE years since I've seen his kids and wife!
2) My parents are moving within an hour's drive from Portland. My local siblings and I have been helping them to rip out carpets, paint (SO much painting), and laying new floors. Dad wants to build an additional room. They need to fence the backyard and do so much yard work...along with several other home projects. But honestly, my parents seem more alive and excited than I've seen them in years. The projects will keep Dad busy as he transitions into second retirement and being closer to extended and our immediate family will be good for both of them too. It took me a bit to get on board with them moving, but I'm looking forward to lots of day time moments with them and to also seeing more of my siblings.
3) Did I mention that I'm almost done with massage school?! :) Pretty darn glad to almost be completed as I've been pretty wiped out the last couple months for various reasons. My goal is to take my exams in January and hopefully be licensed and part-time employed in February.
4) I'm heading in a direction to finally follow my dreams...which means potential big plans for summer 2015. So many pieces must fall into place, but I've been amazed at the connections that have arrived so far and the support from many individuals in my life. My parents will (hopefully) dog-sit, I plan to sublet the house (prayers please!), and my boss is willing to work with my scheduling needs for the summer. So here's hoping it will all fall into place...and that doors will begin to open to head more toward the field of international health in terms of a career path also.
5) The dogs and I are laying in bed, munching on crackers together. We sat in front of the fire earlier this evening and just let thoughts roll and ponder, and I talked to THREE of my favorite ladies on the phone this afternoon and evening. This morning I spent listening to the sermon from a visiting pastor that answered a revolving question in my brain regarding stagnancy, and then I met an attractive for a most amazingly delicious cup of coffee. (That I ended up not really wanting a second date with him is mainly beyond the point... :)) But really...the more I think about life as of late... what could be more awesome than all of this in these moments?! :)
6) I legally changed my name back to my maiden name. The reasons behind this are endless but I'm hopeful the transition back to my name & roots will head life back in a direction of opportunity, open doors, reclaiming my old identity, and blending it with a passion for the future. Still in process of changing so.many.various.accounts.... but it was awesome to celebrate the name change with a gathering of various friends over wine & desserts at the house last weekend. Ironically it was the same court house that made me a wife and gave me a divorce that I wasn't sure I wanted...and that now also gave me back the most amazing sense of freedom by returning me to my original legal name.
7) I now have two laying hens...and so far the birds are surviving the crazy winter we've been having even though we're technically in autumn!
8) My gal friends put me to a challenge of dating earlier in October. I've almost completed the actual challenge although I intend to stick with it through the end of this year. It's been teaching me a lot about myself and I'm having to work on being more comfortable saying "sorry, no, I'm not interested." It's been validating in a lot of ways to discover that regardless of where I am in life right now that the variety of males I've gone out with all seem to be interested, but it can also be challenging to then have to let them know that I'm just not feeling it. I think more dating experience is good for me as I didn't spend much of my 20s really dating, I'm processing a lot of new information about myself and potential partners, and I'm also gaining more exposure to what might really matter in the long run. Ironically I'm in no hurry to settle down again, especially when I'm currently feeling that there are things I need to take care of before that notion really settles into my heart and mind again.
9) I'm recognizing that I'm in a period of renewal, growth, and transition AGAIN....but I'm okay with that. The last few months rocked my core a bit, finalized some things I already knew, and are causing me to re-establish the happiness and joy I already know I can grasp once I process through a few more things. But for the first time in a long time, I feel like life...is in motion again...and in the motion that it was originally supposed to head me on. I'm believing that anything is possible...and that doors will open when and how they shall to lead me on ahead...
10) Making mileage for my year running goal is in sight. In fact, it's so in sight that I slowed off this month to allow myself to focus on helping my parents and trying to keep my immune system going. The dogs and I had some pretty awesome long day hikes/trail runs last month and we just covered our first ten miler road run in months! The reason for that road run is that I also officially registered for my first half marathon race...and I haven't exactly been training for it. One of my high school acquaintances and I are going to run it together....and I also am in the process of roping some friends together for a fun run at the end of this month also. Ironically I think 2015 will have less running, still lots of hiking, and maybe something more gentle for my life...like yoga.
11) I'm already thinking about what to create for next year's goals. Beyond the biggie, there may be one regarding my fear of horses. The usual financial goals will be on the list, as will the occupational changes. I'm also being realistic at what all can be covered next year and am mainly focusing on the big one plus finances and 1 or 2 real minor ones. Constantly evolving life is...
12) There's so much more to say at this point...but I'll just leave it with I'm so grateful. The last few weeks have had many tears of gratitude....to feel life moving, to have certain doors forever closing, to feel renewed and grounded in an older truth, to have the amazing support and celebration of so many loved ones via friends and family and various acquaintances. I've been covered in prayer, I have my cousin as my life coach guiding me on my way, I've felt the outpouring of love from so many family and friends, and I've had encouragement from so many various sources. I recognize that...I truly am so blessed by the life that I already am living....and I'm excited to see how it might continue to evolve as we head into the future. If I had to redo the last 5ish year, I don't think I would choose to do so, but I also recognize how this period of hardness and stagnancy in life has evolved me into a version of a person for the future that I probably desperately needed to become. There are reasons for everything, even if we don't always want to see or experience them...and even if we truly never understand them. But regardless of it all, I'm so incredibly grateful to continue in this process of evolving....