Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Leaning Back

I had an aha experience while a "discussion"was going on.  George and I were having a disagreement and I utterly emotionally detached from it but remained completely in it.  I kept thinking to myself, I'm not getting upset, I'm not getting mad, how is this happening?   I can get really heated and yell and curse (sometimes) in an argument but in this one, when he raised his voice, I didn't match it.  Normally, a raised voice pushes every one of my buttons but this time, I stayed calm.  I was just aware of what was going on.

We discussed it briefly later in the day calmly and came to agreements about how we react to situations and each other.  It was a peaceful resolution.  I love that this is our work in progress.  We communicate and discuss our feelings and we listen to each other.

The below video is fantastic!  It describes the process so well.  I love, love, love the description of leaning back - does he even say that or is that how I picture it.  It is to me the full representation of having boundaries.  God bless boundaries!

In the still and quiet, there is God and that intuition comes forth and gives direction.  Good, good stuff.

This is Michael Singer on Super Soul Sunday on OWN channel.  His book is "The Untethered Soul"  I haven't read it but of course, own it and what he has said in interviews has resonated deeply with me.  I can only watch so much and then I take the time to absorb it.  Good, good stuff!

Friday, October 19, 2012

I'm Not As Young As I Think I Am

My mother never has had a problem with her age.  She has always announced proudly how old she is and will round up to the next year.  She has never dyed her hair either.  I have no problem stating my age, but I will hopefully dye my hair for many, many years to come.  It just doesn't look good natural, whatever that color would be now?

Yet lately, in regards to my age there have been several indicators that I am not as young as I think I am.

First, it appears that I have entered new hormonal territory.  My FSH is in perimenopausal range, so it's official!  Waiting to do a saliva test to get the real picture.   It doesn't really bother me that in a few years I will not be fertile anymore, but the symptoms do.  Symptoms that mixed company  and some non-mixed company aren't comfortable with hearing about out loud.  But there is jubilation on my part, when I find another woman who understands what I'm talking about it and we can laugh together (and share information!)

A second indicator of my youthfulness fading away was when Donna Summer died in May.  The mother of one of Mallory's classmates did not know who she was.  O...M...G...  I'm still stunned.  Not a music person, I guess?

Third, at a recent birthday party, while chatting with another mother of one of Mallory's classmates, it was discovered that we had both attended Silliman High School.  I was a graduate in 1986, and she was a graduate in... 2002.  Yes, 2002.  It's not that 16 years is that big of an age difference, it's that I just think that fellow parents are somewhere in the same ballpark as me.  Sixteen is NOT in the ballpark I imagined.

Lastly, I am officially wearing reading glasses because I HAVE to.  Not like a few years ago, when my eyeglass fetish was rampant and it was cute.  It is simply dramatic how much clearer the iPhone is when I wear those magnifiers.  And let me say, it is a whole process to learn how to wear them:  how far down the nose they should go, the tilt of the head to look at things further away,  putting them on, taking them off, keeping them smudge free, and keeping them in handy places.  It's a lot of work.

But, back to Donna Summer.  I was kinda sad for this mom who never knew the feeling of getting out there and dancing that "last dance."  I'm sure there had to be a song for her age bracket but come on, how can you beat The Queen of Disco?   I still have a distinct mental picture of myself either at the Sillman gym or one of the church halls, maybe around seventh, eighth grade?  Hoping, oh so hoping, to get asked to dance that last song of the night.  And I remember dancing my heart out, gyrating, sweating, smiling and enjoying every moment of it, and not wanting it to end.

Well, I don't wait to get asked to dance anymore.  We have our own dance parties and last night, Riley and I turned on the Sweet Home Alabama song and then the Queen.  I motioned for George and Mallory to join us.  The whole family moved in their own peculiar ways.  Mallory tries to get Annie the dog to dance.  I dance and keep the cats away from attacking Annie who I don't think is digging on Donna.

Sweet, sweet memories of my youth, and making new ones together with my family.

Although I may not be as young as I think I am, I will always enjoy disco and it is mattering less and less whether those around me understand that or not.  I find great joy and I amuse myself!!  That is a sure sign of aging, right?  But I do know when you find joy rising, grab ahold of it and enjoy the ride.

(The song was released in 1978.  I was ten years old.  Donna Summer, may she rest in peace, was still belting it out effortlessly in this tribute to David Foster in 2011. )

Thursday, October 18, 2012

Master Bath Remodel: During

And did I say that the process started the week I was working vacation bible school? Oy!  I'm still tired thinking of that week.

New hole drilled in the floor to move drain. 
Cabinets ripped out and made shorter to accomodate longer tub.
New Tub!!

No one said it would be a pretty process.

Which paint color??

Master Bathroom: The After!!

The 6 ft tub - the whole reason for the makeover!

Glass Shower with stone floor!

New granite, tile floor, bronze fixtures and framed mirror!

George's sink

New television- Mallory watches it the most!

Master Bathroom: Before

 These are the Master Bathroom Before pictures.  It's a "little" white and the walls were actually pale yellow.  The rest of the motif was black and white - I had it staged a couple of years ago when we thought we were going to sell.  I had previously had the walls a pretty slate blue.  I love blue!

My sink

The Problem: Corner Tub
Standard Shower - All White

Lighting not placed properly - Mirrors need updating.

Monday, October 15, 2012

It Just Takes Time...

Isn't it ironic how the state of your house reflects what is going on in your life personally?

This summer we undertook a major bath remodel and now things are progressing in that way where you continue to see things that need changing and the process goes on in smaller ways.

Once the Master Bath remodel decision was made, that was it, we are not going anywhere.  We have dug in and decided to make this our home for the next decade.  We got a new wood floor in our bedroom, the girls got new granite counters and mirrors in their bathrooms.  We are systematically changing out the fixtures throughout the house to bronze.  First it was door handles and this weekend, George changed out 57 door hinges.

And then, I begin to look at furniture.  I decided that the bright blue comfortable reclining chair and a half, does not fit the vision in the keeping room anymore.  George concurred and I began looking at fabrics.  I'm trying to match what is in the room already: flooring, paint, rug, couch and wall hanging.

The issue at hand is a large tapestry.  I bought it several years ago and I was quite proud of my purchase.  Designing my home space has moved from being daunting to quite exciting and challenging in a good way over the years.  Twelve years ago, the tapestry looked good.  Yet now I'm looking at the fabrics for the new chair and some of them are really appealing to me yet something is holding me back.  The ones I really like do not work with the whole room.

After I complained about "matching things", my designer finally suggests that I just need to take that tapestry off the wall.

That thought hadn't occurred to me.

What was once useful no longer works.

I thought the task of changing out 57 door hinges was herculean.  Counting the number that you need, getting to the store, and finding the "right" ones at the store.  George amazed me with drill in hand, how fast he changed out each one.   I was willing to put off this task for a long time because it was just too much, yet having all the parts match, looks so good.

A profound thought occurs...  Why have I always thought, "oh no, that's too much" before I think of the possibilities of taking action and saying "yes" first.  I have ALWAYS thought "I can't" before I have thought "I can."  For my whole life it seems I have operated from a place of no.  These NO thoughts have held me back and cluttered my brain with negativity for so long.  Yet, they are dissipating slowly and surely.

The tapestry is down and folded and will be donated.  The mission of finding just the right piece(s) has commenced.  One piece of art has already been bought and returned.  Upon walking out of the store with the second option, I glance up at the outside display, spotting just the right pieces and know that I will be back again to return what I just bought.

It takes time and practice to get it right, in the house and in the mind.

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Well, Who Knew This Was Coming?

I had ultrasounds on Monday.  These are the first steps in figuring out where my body is and where I am in relation to....

This is where I would insert:  dunh, dunh, dunh, dunh....

Menopause (or really perimenopause to be correct)

It feels like I am beginning the journey of perimenopause.  My periods have gotten closer together in the last year and have gotten pretty heavy.  My breasts are tender for two weeks prior.  My acne is flaring up even on antibiotics that use to work.  And the thing that really drove me to action was mood swings.

With all of the changes due to aging the one shining star is that I am getting wiser.

I have done so much work to allow my feelings to flow through, I cannot tolerate what feels like an alien coming in and changing my personality.    Yes, I have a low tolerance for mood swings, that's me.

From what I hear and read, I am probably estrogen dominant and my progesterone production has slowed down.  Who knew that if those hormones do not stay in their delicate balance all hell breaks loose.  I bet those women who were burned at the stake for being witches did.  As George lovingly pointed out the term, hysterectomy.  Being out of balance does bring hysteria for some women and with good reason.

Years ago, I watched The Oprah Show with Dr. Christian Northrup and Suzanne Sommers.  They discussed bioidentical hormones among other things.  I am so glad I had this prior lesson so that is it easier to make decisions now.

From the ultrasound, I found out I had small fibroids, a slightly enlarged uterus and a complex cyst on my right ovary that needs a repeat ultrasound.  Not what I was expecting but luckily the treatment is the same for fibroids and approaching menopause and estrogen dominance...progesterone cream.  It is going to be my new friend.

Yesterday, I got the results from bloodwork on cycle day 3.  I can add slightly anemic to the growing list of symptoms and my FSH is in perimenopausal range.  The anemia really makes sense because I do feel like I have been dragging lately.  I thought I was just feeling old.

Now, on to a saliva test on Cycle Day 19...so we can get the treatment started.  I really want to start rubbing the progesterone cream into my arm so as to start the process but I have to wait until I have the test done to get an accurate reading.

Good things come to those who wait.  I didn't think progesterone would be on my list of good things so soon!!