Saturday Sharing…Be a kind human.

“Civility is claiming and caring for one’s identity, needs, beliefs without degrading someone else’s in the process…[Civility] is about disagreeing without disrespect, seeking common ground as a starting point for dialogue about differences, listening past one’s preconceptions, and teaching others to do the same. Civility is the hard work of staying present even with those whom we have deep-rooted and fierce disagreements…But it is political, too, in the sense that it is about negotiating interpersonal power such that everyone’s voice is heard, and nobody’s ignored.”

Cassandra Dahke and Tomas Spath

Today’s sharing is a bit unique and continues on my line of breaking down false barriers in my personal media. I won’t paint you pretty pictures anymore. If I had done so in the past I am sorry and I grant you the ability to call me on them now if I do.

Every day I get up and I flip to a specific page in Brene’ Brown’s, Braving the Wilderness. I have found that it is exactly what I need in small doses and even more so, if I flip to a specific page it is the Divine speaking to me loud and clear. Today’s lesson is above and ironically enough it is has been on my mind for a bit now. This idea of civility. Especially when looking at civility through rejection. IMG_9116

Anyone ever been rejected? Oh I am the only one, huh? I don’t believe you. Well then let me say to you it is hurtful and creates shame. But more than anything it is not fun when it is not deserved.

And you know hypothetically that rejection says so much more about the person they chose to be than who you are. But we still wonder. I will own that wonder and curiosity now for all of you. But then I encourage you (and myself) to take pride in who you were in that moment. You acted kind in heart and behavior by being civil.

I never want to be the one that makes someone else feel unloved or unworthy of love. A lot of that is my personality and even more of it is my faith and beliefs. I truly believe my earthly purpose is to breath kindness and love into the world. The hard part that I am owning today is that it is not always easy to spot those who do not live with those same intentions.

There are others who have different paths and different purposes and it is so incredibly easy to forget that in the midst of those rejections. But reminder today, “it is about negotiating interpersonal power such that everyone’s voice is heard, and nobody’s ignored” and my dear readers that includes you…and me.

We deserve to be heard. We deserve to tell our stories. We deserve to walk away from what is not ours to negotiate any longer. – MR

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Saturday Sharing: Podcasts

Anyone else love podcasts as much as me? I am slightly obsessed as in seriously obsessed.

download (1)My current favorite and one I wait anxiously for new ones is: 

Broken Harts by Glamour Mag. This podcast is telling the story of the Hart family who were a home schooling family who adopted several children and by all accounts looked like all was well until one day one of the moms drove them off a cliff. The story is seriously tragic and makes you frustrated with the lack of a system to protect children and demonstrates how easy it is to hide in plain sight of everyone.

Longtime Favorite that I never miss:

My Favorite Murder which I have loved since the beginning because I am a born and bred Murderino (thanks mom!). I love true crime podcasts and this one is my most favorite. This one has a cult following and you can tell a fellow murderino by how they say, “Byeeeeeeee”. If you say it that way what follows is always a quick but knowing look. Like a nod; it is similar to what motor cycle riders do when they see one another on the road.

A telling of one of my favorite historical stories: 

Unobsecured is telling the story of the Salem Witch trials and I knew I was hooked when 99-ogI heard the story of the Proctors. A story that is taught in my classroom and kids just get sucked into. I think they really love it because the story has some truth to it. It is also told by Aaron Manke the creator of Lore if you have heard of that. Lore has a podcast, a book and an Amazon original. I have watched and listened to some episodes. But I love Unobsecured.

A hot and cold one: 

Sometimes I love this one and sometimes it is just okay. I am a huge fan of One Tree Hill (thanks to two previous students who begged me to binge watch). I did and I fell in love with Jana Kramer. She came out with a podcast called Whine Down with Jana Kramer. What I actually ended up loving was that her husband was on it a few times and I think the episodes did so good that now he is a staple on it. It isn’t so much that I love him on it, but I love them on it together.

Health and Wellness Podcasts: 

  1. Trust and Believe with Shaun T.
  2. The Chalene Show with Chalene Johnson.
  3. The Rise Podcast with Rachel Hollis
  4. Rise Together Podcast

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Saturday Sharing is a weekly post. Enjoy!

Saturday Sharing: New Year Edition

Hello longtime friend…welcome to my usual Saturday ramblings of what is up with me lately. I haven’t done one of these in a long, long time. Today’s is all about what I am doing in my spare time.

71fz0jq072lReading Sharing:

This previous summer I became obsessed with the Red Queen Series by Victoria Aveyard. The strong female lead, her love interest of Maven and Cal. Everyone out the nets are all team Cal and I am over here all like Team Maven. Everyone wants the good guy and I am over here like I want the bad boy. But I won’t spoil what happens. The characters are written in a really promising and realistic manner. The plot lines are a slow build and I can see where that may make someone put the book down. But Aveyard writes in a manner that even though you put the book down the characters have you. You wonder what is happening with them. I did just that. Started in August 5th and had to start over on Christmas break.

Now next in the line up is That is Not What Happened by Kody Kepling. I am going to push through this to prove I can read a book when I am teaching because I often forget that. This book is about how people are heroised (not a word…I know) after a tragedy and that sometimes the stories they tell are not actually true. It is fiction, so it is not necessarily true, but it is a reaction to all the school shootings that have been happening. I am almost half way in and it is so good. It definitely not like the Red Queen series, but it is good. I think I like series that you can stay committed to for awhile. But it is nice for a quick read to remind myself I can read.

I was going to read Furyborn by Claire Legrand, but it is a part of the trilogy and the rest x400of it has not come out yet, so I didn’t want to get too committed to a super deep plot right now after Red Queen. But it is similar in nature to Red Queen series, but I am told it is a bit steamier. I will let you know.

I also am always simultaneously listening to a book (thank you audible) on my way to and home from work. And currently I am listening to I’ll be gone in the Dark by Michelle McNamara which is about the Golden State Killer and Rapist. I love true crime and I listen to a ton of true crime podcasts and books. This one is definitely a great one. The story of Michelle McNamara is also very interesting, but I do not want to spoil that, but I recommend that you go check her out.

And finally, right now I am doing the Weekly Prayer Project which is kind of a devotional and kind of a journaling prompt. My goal is to finish this this year. I love the book and I love that they are short excerpts. My biggest issue with devotionals is I get very overwhelmed.

So my reading goal….I want to read 30 books this year. I think I can do it if I include audible as an option. I love young adult, fantasy, non-fiction, romance and self-help. I also have one heck of a Barnes and Noble discount with my teacher discount and Barnes and Noble membership card.

Alright…happy reading with you this Saturday. Hope you are taking some time to read things other than social media (except don’t forget my blog).

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Saturday Sharing is a weekly sharing of what is happening in my life currently!!!

Weekend Sharing: The Teacher Edition

This past week I presented to my colleagues how I have immersed myself into the online teaching community. I have been a part of it for years. However, in the last year or so I truly found my people on the internet. I would like to share those with you today. Many of these are teacher links. But a few of them are just great and inspirational people.

I am certain I have talked about this guy here before, but he has truly changed me and he lights a fire under me and in turn makes my classroom better. A few years ago my district hired him to speak with us and I sat in the audience and listened to him to speak. I expected little and got more than I bargained for. He connected with and I was ecstatic that there was someone out there that thought like I did. His name is Principal Kafele.

I have watched his video with my kiddos in my classroom about “ISMs”. He has a video for nearly every personal involved in the educational process. My favorite one though is “Hey Teacher” and the message is often centered around the idea: “How are your students lives better 10 years from now because of you?” What I think I love about PK is that he doesn’t call himself a speaker. He calls himself an educator and has goals in education that he shares about each time he speaks. He doesn’t see himself as a career speaker. He sees himself now and always as an educator first.

My second favorite teacher and friend now at this point is Laura Randazzo. She has motivated and inspired my own teaching in so many ways. We have connected via this blog and hers and since on Instagram. But she is such an amazing teacher with so many ideas. For me, she is one of those teachers and moms that I look up to and think she is doing it all and so can I. Her teachers pay teachers site is by far my most used and purchased. If you are an LA secondary level teacher you MUST check her out. She also has a YouTube channel. I have used her resources and never ever have they been a disappointment to myself or my students.

My last and final gigantic big blurb (not because the links below are less important, just because these are my major hitters. That means that I check in with them on a regular basis and therefore think you should as well. Not all of them are English teachers. PK is a principal and working on becoming a Superintendent. LR is an secondary English teacher and Christina Costa was a middle school science teacher turned PhD student.

Now let’s talk about Christina Costa who is a YouTuber I found about a year ago. What I was drawn to her was her authenticity in the classroom. I connected with that because that is what I feel like I bring to my classroom. There are so many rules for teachers that some demand should happen. Don’t smile till December. Don’t connect with them personally. Be hard and non-emotional. Don’t get off track ever. Just so we are clear I break pretty much all of those rules every day. I found out pretty early on those rules are NOT what make me a good teacher. Christina with her students reminds me to keep that authenticity and it honestly is just fun and inspirational to watch. She started to feel powerless in her teaching and decided to go back to where she felt like she could have more power and applied for a Phd program.

This also is where I am at. If you all remember I have deferred a Phd program. I did this for a few reasons. My husband’s health and second that I was working on a few classes that I needed to teach speech at my school which I just finished up. We will see where I am headed. I am not sure where I am headed where that is concerned, but I know I am grateful to watch Christina go through it and help me decide.

Quick Links for Teachers

Hoping my inspiration inspires you all a little. – MR

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Saturday Sharing is a post dedicated to sharing information.

Saturday/Sunday Sharing…A little different.

I was 24. I held my 3 week old daughter in my hands. It was my 2nd day of being fully alone with her on my maternity leave. I was really struggling with postpartum baby blues. I was watching this exact footage of the Today Show. I remember the adrenaline as this was happening and I was watching. It happened again as I was watching this morning. The footage still had the ability to instill and create fear. I remember being so very afraid. Extremely afraid for what was happening and what the future would bring after this. I called my mom. I called my husband. I cried. What followed was days of a blur for a few reasons. I had a friend whose husband was in one of the towers and missing and she had a new baby daughter just like me. That was our “in common”. We were internet friends. We were August 2001 mommas going through our pregnancies and then following raising our babies together.

The news coverage was constant for days. No shows. No DVRs to escape. No Netflix (that I remember). All news stations cable and local combined their news reporting so that everyone had all the same news and same sources. Now as a media teacher I understand just what a big deal this move was and I haven’t seen it happen since and since then our 24 hour news cycle has only increased. It literally changed the way we get our media.

The only escape from the coverage was to turn it off, but fear kept me from that. My guy would go to work. I would try and turn the TV off and engage my baby girl to just escape. I wrote. I wrote a lot. So I want to share some of what I was feeling. Some of what I wrote was so personal to my daughter or even my husband because I was trying to just make sense (like everyone else) of what was actually happening. I have pages and pages and pages of writing to her, to the world and of what I dealing with. Here are some brief excerpts:

Sept 11 11 AM- “The President said there are several planes unaccounted for and has ordered all planes that aren’t going where they should are to be immediately shot down. There are so many bomb threats that I have lost count. They are everywhere. All planes were to land exactly where they were. It is eerily quiet because we live by the Indianapolis airport.”

Sept 12 10:39 PM – “I am so tired of feeling down and depressed about all of this. I tried to watch a movie, but it just doesn’t feel right to turn away from the coverage. I don’t even know what feels right at this point. I want to grasp onto the life we had before September 11th, but that isn’t even possible and no I am not being dramatic. It will never be the same; how can it? My baby girl won’t know life before September 11th and I am angry about that. My heart breaks and I know now that we will know war like my ancestors knew war. No one is thinking before they react and all I can do is pray. I don’t know what else to do.” 

Sept 17 11:56 AM – “My friend has confirmed that her husband was lost during the impact of 9/11. All I have is sympathy for her and her precious daughter. They moved from abroad for peace.”

And every single year since then on 9/11 I send love and prayers to my sweet friend Liat and her daughter Sapir. A forced anniversary. I have enjoyed seeing both of them go on to make the best of an unthinkable situation. Sapir has no idea just how many have supported her from afar.

Now I teach students who don’t even have any idea what 9/11 was. Just the other day I said something to all my girls about September 11th and my youngest said, “What’s that?” I said, “Oh yea!” And did a lame job trying to explain. How can you ever explain something so catastrophic with any sort of justice. My answer….YOU CAN’T.

Every year I mark my own memorial of 9/11 by being silent on every media. Tomorrow will be no different. I will never forget. I will never forget for Shai, Liat and Sapir. I will never forget for all the others whose lives were taken that day.

May we always remember. -MR

Saturday Sharing: Guess what’s back?

It has been awhile since I have done a Saturday sharing besides last week’s attempt at a resurrection, but that showed me how much I actually missed it. So here we are? Saturday sharing is back and I want to discuss something that is working on me as of recently. Here in enters Saturday Sharing: The Hysterectomy Edition.

Some may wonder why share about something that is private and my answer to that I have nothing to be ashamed of and I don’t need attention for it. I share because I know and have meet a lot of women who suffer from Post Tubal Ligation Syndrome. That is why I share.

POST TUBAL LIGATION SYNDROME

Post Tubal Ligation Syndrome is only now beginning to become recognized and it is ptlssurgically induced but comes with a whole host of symptoms which can be read at the above link, but it basically makes life pretty miserable. I lived with it since 2012. Thankfully, I had a great doctor that was young and educated on it and mostly went through the ringer for my insurance to cover my hysterectomy. She knew that because I am fairly young that we would have to check many things off the list before they would cover it and we did over a year and half. I found a lot of great information and support from two great sites over the years at Facebook Group # 1 and Group # 2.

HYSTERECTOMY SUPPORT

The prep for surgery and surgery itself were pretty painless. I had more pain from my ulcer than the surgery itself. The hardest part of the surgery and trying to find my footing since. You hear the horror stories of terrible aging of skin, loss of femininity, and the ever adjusting hormones. Ironically, my hormonal shifts feel like what it was like to be pregnant. Swings from here to there and like an alien is taking over. Thankfully, I know what I am feeling is completely normal and I just need to find patience as I make my way through it. The best support I have found is HysterSisters.

Hystersisters is a great site that allows you to customize based on your surgery date with informative articles and forums to hang with others who are in your same spots of pre-op and recovery. The one thing that I did learn from this site is that recovery physically is fairly quick but recovery emotionally takes a little longer. And again patience is being kind to yourself and your body as it goes through changes.

PODCASTS

To get through my surgery Podcasts were a savior. Podcasts from NPR were way up there. Mogul was by far and away the best one I listened to over the summer.  The second probably was The Stuff You Missed in History Class. I particularly love the ones where they cover authors because there are so misconceptions around authors in general that it is refreshing to hear the truth. I may have shared this one before but I am in love with this one right now and that The Keto Diet Podcast because it is so informative and they have tons of info on how women with hormonal imbalances use Keto to get back to hormonal balance.

ESSENTIAL OILS

This is NOT an ad. I don’t sell the oils though I am often told I should. But without the oils my recovery would have been and would be so much worse. Seriously you guys…understand between lavender and peppermint I would not have felt even remotely good at the hospital immediately following surgery and the first few days at home. I was so nauseated that I walked around and laid around with a puke bowl by my side. The best oil by far though that I have used is Progessence Plus which is used by me to balance my female hormones. I have used it almost every day since two weeks before my surgery. On days that I forget I can tell my moods shift much more abruptly.

Alright, this is a great start for my diving back into my Saturday Sharing.

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To see my other Saturday Sharing go here —> MR’s Saturday Sharing

 

Saturday but Not Saturday: Sunday Sharing.

Been awhile since I have done Saturday sharing because Saturdays are STATurdays and that means I am hyper focused on that and not sharing. But I have had one building for awhile. Of course, it has to do with health and nutrition because right now is there anything else?

Magic Formula Sharing….

When I was thinking about losing weight or at the beginning of this journey or even the last few years I wanted some magical formula. I surfed the net for the magical answer to my weight loss woes. I pinned every single thing I could find. I falsely believed someone else’s story could be my own.

That is the problem with weight loss. You have to claim it as your own. You have to find what works for you and truly nothing will ever work unless you figure out your formula and the even more sucky part of that formula is that as you go it changes. You have to find tools and support to make click to figure out your answer.

But the formula is pretty much the same for everyone. It is calories in versus calories out. That is incredibly simple though and the process is more complicated than that. Calories are inherently different. An avocado has 310 calories much of it is the good kind of fat that fuels your body and brain. A doughnut similarly can have 310 calories, but that calorie composition is much different and processed differently by the body and the brain. For a better explaination of this process read this article “Debunking the calorie myth“. However the article does remind us:

If we take in more energy (calories) than we expend, we gain weight. If we expend more energy than we take in, we lose weight. This is an unbreakable law of physics and isn’t even debatable.

Food Sharing…

I have figured it out. It IS about what you eat less than how much you eat. And while we are talking about eating there is literally no better source for eating, inspiration, recipes and ideas of methods of eating (Clean/Paleo/Raw/Organic) than on my beloved Pinterest. Seriously, I have been in such overabundance of salad that I pretty much hate it right now that I have been desperately making sure to get my greens in that if it weren’t for pinterest and my salad alternatives I would be starving.

spinachI should also say I have not really had a salad in three weeks and have had no problem finding alternatives and have lost and maintained just fine. So many people think diets are all about salads. It really isn’t. It is about veggies and the right veggies. My favorite things right now are cooked spinach recipes.

And honestly you take almost any recipe you love and “clean” it up. Many think you can’t, but you can. For example, I went to Friday’s the other day and had chicken hibachi skewers. By all accounts my plate seemed healthy. It was steamed broccoli, jasmine rice and chicken with a miso glaze with grilled pita triangles. Sounds decent right?

The calorie count was 1230. That is ridiculous and honestly it makes me mad that restaurants get away with this crap. But I understand why they do it. Its fats were good. Its sugars were good. Its sodium….3500mg and its carbs 185g. Both of are those are basically in their addictive forms if you ask me and guaranteed a return customer.

But let me tell you I did what I always do. I go to a restaurant and love and dream about summer11the food after I leave. I look up its nutritional information and realize why I can’t get it out of my head. But my smarter head prevails and I remake the recipe and clean it up. Which I did last night. I didn’t get a picture other than my veggies in their raw form before they were grilled.

But I made chicken skewers covered in a reduced low sodium soy with sesame oil and sriracha sauce. I basted a ton of veggies and my chicken in it. I made a side of jasmine rice where I could control sodium and I grilled full of all the good stuff like whole wheat, flax seeds and chia ground pita triangles. I guarantee my recipe was handled in my body better and with much less junk in it.

But I say none of this to shame anyone for eating dinner out. I will go to Friday’s again and I may very well eat the skewers again. But the mistakes I made before would be to not recognize the sodium and carb intake cannot happen daily. I spent the next two days following the dinner with ridiculous cravings for carbs and salt. That ladies and gentleman is figuring out my formula. I can’t do that regularly because it sabotages my hard work and effort.

MMF_logo_RUN_stacked_2cRunning Sharing…

I have been using the Clear Sky 5k App. I like it but found I have outpaced it pretty quickly. I am glad I did, but I typically have to skip a day or so. I have noticed it has it kinda of set up a three times a week run and right now I am running about 5 out of 7 days. I am guessing that is the reason for the outpace. However, I have also noticed I run super hard one day and then kinda wimpy the next two. So this app sometimes help with that.

The second I have used is Red Rock Apps running for weight loss. Weight loss in running is helped by switching things up. This app does that switching for you. I like to have someone tell me what to do on running to build up my stamina and endurance. This gives you intervals of sprinting and steady runs. The biggest issue I see with it is it often struggles to find my GPS, so I have to run it simultaneously with map my run app.

Working Out Sharing…

Kpuff has kinda of created us a workout plan that involves many different trainers and TK_ChalaneJab164x200training programs. I have really loved some of them and hated others. We always try and rate them and see how we do. We have also increased our weight lifting to help build muscle.

My favorite program and trainer by far is Chalene Johnson. She will never replace my beloved Shaun T from T25. But her positivism and motivation to do better and be a better human being just jives so much with my outlook on life. Her HIIT workouts are my favorite and a part of her TurboFire Series. I also like Chalene Extreme. Now her Piyo series…Me not likey so much. I am a cardio addict so piyo I sweat but the moves seemed unnatural to me and not as much cardio as I like.

Then there is the 21 Day Fix videos….I am not a huge fan. I won’t lie. They are a good workout, but I absolutely hate how sore I am for almost a week after the workout. With Shaun and Chalene I am sore, but it manageable. Most of the time if it is too bad I just need a soak in the tub. Rarely do I wince and moan and groan from the pain for a week. No secret, I love the program and will love, love, love her new cookbook in July. But the videos…meh. :/

Alrighty, I think I have shared enough for today. Have a great week you all!

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Want to see what else I am sharing? Go here.

Saturday Fix Sharing…And I Suppose Less of Me.

Hello All,

This week’s sharing I clearly have one thing on my mind and that is my 1st round of the 21 Day Fix. I am excited for it and have been immersed in the prep. I am not going to lie the prep of any clean eating diet is overwhelming and hard to do. However, I know that it is imperative for me that I do it.

21fix2If you want to combine all of my prep time together of grocery shopping, cutting, measuring and cleaning the fridge to make it work then I am at about 6 hours. That seems like a lot, but the grocery run will get better. I bought all new and fresher spices, I had to buy containers for the week, I had to prepare the dressings and free seasonings. I won’t have to likely do any of that minus maybe the dressings again. As well, I predict I will get better at the prep once I get an idea of what we like.

My guy is doing this with me as well, as is Kpuff and two internet friends. We basically printed out a grocery list and we both went through it and highlighted foods we liked or could tolerate. I made my own, but pinterest has some pre-made. Then I looked up recipes for 21 Day fix meals on pinterest. From there I combined the the two and made a grocery list and then I went shopping. It took me awhile because there is some label reading. 21 Day is a low sodium/no sodium diet.

Then I woke up this morning and as a family we measured out veggies, fruits, dressings, salads, recipe fixins and snacks. I basically have 15 of every thing that we both will eat and21fix3 about 7 of the things that only one of us like. It is all ready to go and all we have to do is grab it out of the fridge.

The 21 Day Fix doesn’t allow for iceberg and in the interest of being up front I couldn’t live without it, so I purchased a mixed greens salad mix which is predominantly iceberg and I dumped it in a huge bowl and then I added a large bag of spinach to it, a head of radicchio, a colorful lettuce my grocery store had and romaine lettuce. I mixed them all together and then chopped them with kitchen shears. I made 15 salads out of it and measured them out. My green lettuce to iceberg ratio is probably 3:1.

Meals Planned for this Week

21fix1Now all of these may not happen this week. I have over planned on purpose because it will keep me accountable and it is all prepped ready to make on the nights when I get home from work. As well, I will bring leftovers to work and add in salads or chicken when needed.

I found a garlic parsley mix that is 21 friendly at the grocery that I intend to bake 6 extra chicken breasts in for this week. Honestly, I am excited to start this. I will update with my meals and how it is going.

Kpuff and I are headed out to dinner at Takioka tonight to celebrate week 7 of T25 and to celebrate our beginning of 21 Day Fix tomorrow. We are proud of our hard work together.

With that…Happy Saturday! Remember love always wins! You just have to let it!

Eat-a-skinny-person

Photo (7)

 

“What good is the warmth of summer, without the cold of winter to give it sweetness.”
John Steinbeck, Travels with Charley: In Search of America

Not much needs said today in the stillness of the snow. Life dredges on, the sounds of my girls doing their Saturday things. The hope for renewal that is soon coming.

This my backyard. It has been going since 6AM. Waiting for a breather or a break, but I suppose that is Mother Nature telling me settle and be still.

Saturday Sharing….It just gets better.

bf1

“Love is not an equation, it is not a contract, and it is not a happy ending. Love is the slate under the chalk, the ground that buildings rise, and the oxygen in the air. It is the place you come back to, no matter where your headed”
Jodi Picoult

Valentine’s Day Sharing…

My guy and I never really go all out for any holiday. Maybe we did before the baby girls, but since then it is usually pretty practical what happens around our house to recognize each other. But the ironic part of that is it just gets better. Each and every year gets better. Usually, it is a simple card set on the pillow. I get up early so the girls let him sleep. He covers bedtime routine, so I can climb into bed early and veg out on the DVR or netflix. He is my opposite and I am hims (love this typo so I am leaving it), the ying to my yang. And it works.

My first thought upon opening my eyes is gratefulness for my guy and for the love we share. It is a quite strength that has intermittently been built upon year by year by happiness and heartbreak. I decided not to nudge his loud snoring as I woke at 5:45. A normal day that would be a nudge with a muffle, sorry honey from his tired sleepy voice. But today I snuck away and scribbled my love on a card, placed it on my pillow so it would be the first thing he saw when he did wake.

It works. It all works. On February 22nd 1996 I met my guy on a whim. Just a few days shy of the Valentine’s Day I declared I didn’t need any men in my life and that I would be independent and worry about meeting a guy (let alone the one) later. Almost exactly a week later he came into my life unexpectedly.

What I love most is the life we share. Our girls. Our laughter. Our time together. We are far past the stages of honeymoon and needing to spend every possible moment together. But we are well into appreciating every time the opportunity arrives for us to be together. And there is always that comforting coming home feeling even if it is a long hug as we head out for a busy day at work, a quick good night before I crash in the evening.

Life hasn’t exactly been kind to us the last year some shared, some not, but there is one that thing remains. I am always and forever jumping off the cliff holding his hand and he mine. That analogy came to me on the day after our wedding as we boarded our airplane. I had never traveled with another person like this. I had always felt so vulnerable on a plane. But I realized the person I loved was on the plane with me and nothing else mattered. That was a comfort. When we got off the airplane in Florida I was starving and really wanting greasy bacon and in five minutes after a procurement of a rental car we were at a dive of restaurant we begged to serve us breakfast and I realized I never had to handle this life alone again. I feel that way over and over and again daily and for it I am grateful.

On this day I wish you that kind of love. That kind of devotion and comfort. As for me and my love, love always wins. It shows us time and time again.

kyleandi