Changes

I can’t believe I have neglected this blog for 6 months. I wish I could tell you everything that has changed. The things I’ve done. They ways I’VE changed.

I’m so proud of myself and the woman I’m becoming. I feel like I’m actually starting to live my life the way I have wanted to for years. I have a better relationship with my parents and friends. I’ve expanded out from my tight knit group of friends to do things with people I never thought I would in the past. I do things I want to do – I plan road trips and last minute trips. I read more. I explore my city. I have lazy days. And busy days.

All of that being said, I’m getting ready to make a major life change. I feel with that life change it’s time to leave this blog behind. I may start a new one, but I feel I have outgrown this one. I don’t know what direction to take it in. I don’t know how to write anymore. For so long my relationship and my weight loss journey dominated my life. And now, neither of those do and I feel it’s time for a fresh start.

So be on the look out. Maybe I’ll be back with a new name and an updated attitude.

Much love,
Ms. Chocolate

Weekend Update

I’ve struggled with what to write about for a while. I don’t really have anything major going on. I’m single, I’m working like a crazy woman, and overall I’m HAPPY. Nothing too exciting there.

But that, that whole not having anything exciting going on, being completely content with my life, is totally exciting! See, it took me a long time to get here. Even when I thought I was here, I wasn’t. I was still searching for someone to fill my attention. Trying the online dating thing (which I deleted all online dating profiles, it’s a waste of time). I was asking my friends for any single friends they may have – male or female, I just need a single friend in my life. And then, I stopped caring. I still need that single friend to go out with on occasion. But ultimately, I don’t. I have great friends. I have a wonderful job. A house that is plenty to keep me busy (I should probably work on that).

I stopped focusing on what in my life needed to change and started focusing on everything I have in my life. And it has been awesome. I have felt so much more free since I stopped the online dating madness. And you know what, once I stopped trying my friends actually attempted to set me up with a guy – we’ll see how that goes. We just started talking this weekend.

My job is keeping me plenty busy, the money is definitely nice. Its giving me something to focus on. Somewhere to spend my time, even if too much of it. I do better in life when I’m busy, and Lord knows I’ve been busy at work.

I’ve started going back to church and even joined a growth group. Its awesome. Its supposed to be a single & mingle group. Sadly, its just a group of single women, ranging in age, but having a blast together. There’s no need to go out drinking, or to the bar, or partying. Last week we had dinner and played board games. And I had a blast. I can’t wait for this week. We’re having a shrimp boil.

So as “unexciting” as my life currently is. As little as I have to come here and tell you about. Its pretty awesome. Now I am going to get back to making my beefymac for dinner and wathicng some Gilmore Girls on Netflix. I know you’re jealous.

What To Do When You’re Single

I’ve been debating about writing this post for a while now. Obviously, since I haven’t posted since Valentine’s Day! What is wrong with me??

But back to the point. Being single has its perks. I’m slowly learning what those perks are. Its been hard, its been easy, its been a roller coaster of awesomeness & sadness all at once. I’ve learned that I’m much stronger than I ever thought I was. I’ve faced my ex and his new wife (yep, you read that right, wife). I was polite. I found closure. I moved on. Not necessarily in that order, but it happened.

Getting to the point where I am able to face these situations has been one of the best journeys of my life. I’ve traveled. I’ve explored my town and new places. I’ve learned to be alone, I’ve been scared to be alone. I’ve grown apart from some friends and closer with others. I’ve been happy and I’ve been sad. Its been amazing.

Since I really didn’t have any idea how to handle this roller coaster of life, I decided to make a guide. You know, in case I’m ever in this situation again. Or in case someone else is in this situation.

1) Veg Out – yep, wallow. Cry. Don’t get out of your PJ’s for a couple days and eat all the ice cream. Drink all the wine. Scarf down all the pizza. Binge watch Grey’s Anatomy. You deserve it. If you did the dumping, or if you got dumped, either way it sucks. Its awful and painful. Give yourself some time to grieve your relationship.

2) Lean on your Girlfriends – Vent to your friends. Get out of the house with friends. Rely on your friends. You’re single now, your friends are your family. Your friends are who you have there for you, to support you and get you through the hard times. To celebrate the good times. Keep them around. And on top of that, make some new ones. Reach out to old friends who you may not have been as close to. Find new people to fill that void, just remember them when you find a new man.

3) Find a Hobby – Seriously, what is something you always wanted to do but your significant other didn’t? I have so many things on my to do list it’s insane. Kayaking, take a cooking class, do a paint night, go to music festivals, travel, go dancing, go wine tasting. Do. It. All. I haven’t done all of these things, but I plan on it.

4) Relax – This is totally different than veg out. Relax because you can. Because you deserve some me time. Take a bubble bath, read a book while enjoying a glass of wine, go to bed early. Give yourself a mud mask or facial. Get a pedicure. Do whatever it is that relaxes you.

5) Workout – Get those endorphins up! Plus you’ll look hot for the next guy that comes around. I’m really starting to like later evening walks with my dog. The evenings are just the right temperature to take him for a nice walk. He loves it and I sleep better at night. It’s a win-win.

6) Flirt – Talk to the guy at the bar, even if you have no intention of going out with him. Ask the cute guy in the grocery store if he thinks Sweet Baby Ray’s or Bubba’s BBQ are better, then a couple isles over ditch the BBQ sauce you have no intention of using. But hey, he was cute! Just flirt. Know you still got it, because you do. Just because your ex is a jerkface loser doesn’t mean no one else can see your awesomeness.

7) Date – Oh this one is awful, I’m not going to lie. But don’t go into dating expecting you’re going to find the man you’re going to marry on your first date after your ex. You might, find your prince charming. Or you might find a frog in disguise. But either way, get out there and have fun. If nothing else you’ll walk away with some pretty awesome stories to tell.

8) Enjoy Life – its really that simple. Just have fun. Get out there and LIVE. You only have one life, and you’re not going to make new friends and meet Prince Charming by sitting on your sofa in your PJ’s bingeing on Grey’s Anatomy (trust me, I’ve tried). So go, be free, have fun.

The dreaded: Single on Valentine’s Day

Today is the first Valentine’s Day that I’ve been single in many years. And oddly, I’m quiet happy with it.

You see, in the past few years I put so much pressure on Valentine’s. It had to be perfect. I didn’t expect anything elaborate, but something nice. I expected the day to be all about me. And it never was. In fact, it usually felt like a let down. I often felt like an after thought. I got the “Oh, I was going to do that. But I didn’t.” One year I even got the “I totally forgot it was Valentine’s Day, so I got you these chocolates while I was at the hardware store” gift. Yeah, I felt real special then.

This year, there were no expectations for Valentine’s day. I spent the day with friends celebrating the birthday of my “nephew”, Dos. I laughed. I joked. Ate cake. Cleaned up cake and cat food (don’t ask). I played with kids. I played with balloons. Popped balloons.

I came home and had 3 lovely Valentine’s Day cards in my mail box. 1 from my dad & stepmom, 1 from my mom, and 1 from my old neighbor with a lovely note written inside. I curled up on the sofa with Fatty and The Lady.

It was a perfect day.

I’m not going to lie, I was afraid of Valentine’s Day this year. I was afraid it would be another let down. That I would feel lonely. Sad. Dare I say, single. But I didn’t feel any of those things at all. I felt happy. Overjoyed. Loved. I spent the day with people I consider family. There were no expectations except to make sure the kids had a good time.

I thought maybe I would have a drink and watch sappy love movies when I got home. Drown myself in sorrows. But no, I’m going to treat tonight like any other Sunday. I’m going to do laundry, wash dishes, and binge on How I Met Your Mother (right after I get in some solid cuddle time). I’m going to go to bed at a reasonable hour and read my book. Today is just another day, nothing special about it.

My fear of being alone on Valentine’s Day meaning you aren’t loved will not control me. Because it couldn’t be more wrong. I’m completely loved today. And every day.

So Valentine’s Day, you can suck it. I win this year. Because honestly, even though I’m spending my night alone, it’s still probably one of the best Valentine’s Days I’ve had in years.

The kid that changed my outlook

So… here’s the post I’m sure some of you have been waiting for.

It’s not about online dating, I’ve stopped that – more to come later. It’s about Mr. Chocolate The Ex. Mrs. Yikes has been asking me for almost a week now when I’m going to write this post, I just haven’t been ready. I guess after a couple of drinks I’m as ready as I’m going to be. Although, I hate to break it to you, it’s probably not going to be the hilarious post you were hoping for Mrs. Yikes.

I found out last week that The Ex is expecting a child. With none other than a girl who is barely no longer a child herself. I will not go into detail, it is not my place to post those details on the internet. That is between him, the mother of his future child (FYI – not me) and their families. In fact, those very few sentences is all I’m going to say on the matter of him having a child. But I will tell you the way this has made me feel and the things I have realized since learning this tid bit of information.

First I felt anger. I felt betrayed. Hurt. I felt like I had been punched in the ovary. That all of my hopes and dreams had been shattered. And then once all of that subsided, and it took some venting to a wonderful girlfriend and a couple glasses of wine before they subsided, I started laughing. I found the humor in the situation. And beyond that, I found the silver lining that has been shining ever since.

I would be lying to you if I told you that before learning this information I didn’t hold out hope. No, I was not hoping that one day The Ex would realize that he had made a giant mistake and want me back – I don’t want that to ever happen. But he still had a hold on me. I hoped for a friendship. I wished for my best friend back. I had that hope of “we’ll still be friends once everything settles down.” I hoped to keep him in my life in whatever form I could.

Afterwards, I realized I don’t want that. More than wanting that, I don’t need that. I am better off. I realized that I don’t need him in my life anymore. My happiness does not revolve around how much I talk to him, I see him. How much he is still a part of me. I am happy again, on my own, something I haven’t felt in a long time. I realized that my happiness doesn’t rely on The Ex being in my life. It relies on me making it happen.

I realized that he didn’t respect me. I found out this information from Facebook of all places. Not from friends. Not from him. Facebook. I  know, I know, I had no right to expect him to tell me. We were broken up, we’re not friends, yada yada. Out of respect for the time we spent together, yes, I do feel that it would have been nice for him to tell me himself. I got a little angry at the fact that he didn’t. I felt that after 4 1/2 years together, he could have at least told me himself. Text, phone call, even a Facebook message. Something other than seeing both of their parents talk about it & being completely thrown for a loop. But that loop also made me realize that if he did respect me, or even our time together, he would have told me. And the fact of the matter is, he didn’t. If he did, a lot of things towards the end of our relationship would have been different. A lot of things involving this girl and her family would have been different. I’m not saying they would be fixed, just different. I fully believe our breaking up was the best thing to happen to me. But his actions in the end showed little respect for me as his partner. This situation helped me realize that.

I am still grateful for the time I spent with him; even if our relationship lasted much longer than it should have. It has taken lots of soul searching to find those reasons, but they are there. Several of those reasons being the awesome friends I now have in my life. Without the years spent with him, I would not have the people like Mr. & Mrs. Yikes in my life. I wouldn’t have the Danes. I wouldn’t have any of my girlfriends that I have now. Without the time spent with him, I wouldn’t be in a place to start dating a guy who has nothing but respect for me (that story is for another day, but it’s a good one). I wouldn’t know what I am and what I’m not willing to put up with in a relationship. I learned how to speak my mind and lay on the table what I want.  What I will and what I won’t put up with. I learned how to show love. I learned how to appreciate love that is shown to me.

I learned who I am. Take it or leave it.

I also learned that it wasn’t that I wasn’t enough for him. I was too much. The Ex wasn’t ready for me. Maybe he was when we met, but at the end, he wasn’t. And that’s ok, because people change. For the better, the worse, or the indifferent, we change. It’s part of life. So when someone says “you’ve changed”, it’s not necessarily a bad thing. It’s just a thing.

 

What’s with the STUFF?

So I’m sitting here watching an episode of How I Met Your Mother. Season 2. Episode 16. Titled, appropriately, Stuff.

I had to giggle to myself while watching it. The premise of this episode, at least the Ted & Robin part, is that Ted has all of this stuff from ex-girlfriends still in his home. Robin has issue with this. It doesn’t start that way. It starts that they’re trying to find a way to discuss past relationships, then it goes too far as Ted takes it too casual. And then comes the STUFF.

It’s everywhere. Ted sees no problem with it, Robin has issue. When it’s brought up for debate, the men agree with Ted, the ladies with Robin.

And it got me to thinking, and realizing, that I also have an issue with “the stuff”. Robin would talk about how she could no longer just see these as things, she saw the former girlfriend and then compared herself to this girl.

I laughed. I thought to myself “Are women really this crazy about the stuff left behind?” And then I stopped laughing. I started realizing, yes. Yes we are.

I started remembering things from my relationship with Mr. Chocolate. Like the blanket that his ex-girlfriend made him in college, almost 10 years ago. I refused to use it. I’d rather freeze than sit under that blanket. Or the cd that another girl gave him, nope, wouldn’t listen to it.

What’s even worse, it was exactly like Robin said on HIMYM. Those items put images of the past women in my head. I started comparing myself to them. They made me insecure. Why does he still have these? Does he still love them? Are they better than me?

Does that make me crazy? Territorial? Insecure?

No, it makes me normal.

And if you have those thoughts or feelings, its ok. You’re normal too. (As long as you don’t let them control you. If you become so insecure that these items start to interfere with your relationship or well being, that’s a whole different story. And sister, you need to talk to someone.)

Still having those items does not mean that he was still in love with the women from his past. It means that he enjoys that CD. That the blanket served a purpose. But he was also allowing new stuff into his home. My stuff. Things he’ll look back at and remember the times we had (like the paint colors on your house, have fun explaining that one buddy!)

Having something from your ex in your home is ok. We all take things away from past relationships; we all leave things behind also. Some of these things are physical items, like the books sitting on my bookshelf. And some are emotional. You just have to know which ones to put on display and which ones to hide away.

I’m just pretending to be an adult, mom.

That’s what The Squirt told me the other day. Well, me and his mom.

My witty comeback to that, “So are we, kid. So are we.”

And at times, it really feels like I’m just going through the motions of adulting. I don’t know how to adult. It’s not as easy as it looks. You have to be responsible and shit. I’m not good at being responsible.

Adulting is a lot of work. I don’t know how our parents did it. Keeping the house clean. Paying the bills. Making the money. It’s hard work. Making sure there is food on the table and the kids (yes, 4 legged furry ones count too) are taken care of. Some days it’s all I can do to make sure I have clean clothes to wear to work. And I’m expected to take care of these fuzzy, 4 legged creatures?? I can’t imagine when I have screaming 2 legged creatures.

adulting book

Adulting is such hard work there’s even a book on how to do it. And you know what, there are 468 steps in this book. That’s insanity. 468 steps to tell me how to be an adult. I don’t have time to read 468 steps on how to be an adult, I’m too busy adulting and shit.

I usually feel like I have everything together. That I’m doing pretty good with things. Like cooking Thanksgiving dinner, I felt in control. And then I have a few days of acting like a kid again, and my adulting goes out the window. I watch a TV show and it makes me realize how I don’t have things figured out. I look in my fridge & realize that things are pretty sad for myself and the furbabies as far as food options are concerned.

adulting

The best part about adulting, though, is realizing that you’re not doing it alone. That you’re not the only one who doesn’t know what stage in life they’re in. You’re not the only one who didn’t see this as their life plan. And you know, you also realize that even the ones whose life did go as planned, still don’t feel like they’re doing that good of a job at adulting. They still sit around with the girls, a bottle of wine, and wonder how they take care of everything.

I think being in our late 20s is hard. We’re at that point where a family is expected, or we already have one. Settling down is the norm. We’re supposed to have steady jobs and provide. But at the same time, we still want to go to the bar and watch the football game. Have girls night and drink too much wine with dinner. The beginning stages of adulting, we’re still just figuring it all out. We don’t know what we’re doing. Its all trial and error until we think we’ve gotten it right. And occasionally, we still have a moment where we slip back into kid mode. Stay in our PJ’s all day and basically throw a temper tantrum at life. No! I will not adult today! Not going to happen!! (That was today, by the way.)

I think the hardest part about adulting, though, isn’t in figuring out what you’re doing. It’s accepting where you are in life. If that means you’re a wife and mom of two, but didn’t see that happening for you. If you’re a newly single, out on her own again, girl. If you’re the never been in a serious relationship, but wants to have children and be a wife and mother, you’re just not there yet. The hardest part of adulting is that even if we had a 5 or 10 year plan, things don’t go as planned. And realizing that we have to throw that plan out of the window every so often and just roll with it.

And Google. Sometimes you just have to google shit to help figure it all out.

adulting google