Thursday, January 02, 2014

Seven not so Quick Takes - #8

Looking back on 2013.... I guess it was a fairly good year. Not as traumatic as 2010, which was the NYE I stayed home and went to bed at 9:00 just so the year could be over as soon as possible!
This year, a dear friend had a simple, low-key party at home - it was perfect!

My best accomplishment this year was getting fit!  Friends have been pointing out what they see as my noticeable weight loss. I did lose a few pounds, but only a few...  however, thanks to dietary changes, and Crossfit workouts, (I gave up wheats and grains more than a year ago, went sort of paleo, and just before Thanksgiving I gave up sugar and dairy)  I have redistributed my weight in a far more desirable fashion! I am very pleased with the changes.
On New Years Eve, an acquaintance saw me and waxed astonished about my transformation. Apparently, it looks like I lost a lot of weight, although I didn't even lose ten pounds, and I'm still fluctuating. I think the change seems dramatic because I lost belly fat due to the many changes I listed in italics, so my tummy is flatter than ever... clothes look SO much better.
I have been struggling with obtaining a flat tummy for years! A few years back, I told McTwitchy that it was one of my biggest insecurities.  He, of course, would always tell me that I looked great... he did not see the fat tummy that was so obvious to me.
Last week, I bragged a little to him and pointed out that my tummy was finally flat. He sees no difference, shrugged and said, "Believe me, no one is looking at your stomach."
I just stared at him, shocked, and said, "That's a really mean thing to say! Geeze, do you men have any idea how much work we women put into having a flat tummy?!" 
Oh well, I know men don't really notice that stuff, but to say that all my work isn't even noticeable seems a bit harsh. Even though I know that he's really saying there are other features men notice before abdominals. I get it. But still.
That's okay, I did it for me anyway!
My biggest failure this year was an attempt to refinance the mortgage on my condo. There are certain FHA restrictions on buildings like mine, that negatively impact eligibility for loans. I'm fully aware of the potential problems, and explained it all to the mortgage agent upfront.  So when they put me through months of information and finance gathering, I really thought it was going to work out.
Seriously, they traumatized me for four months, making me believe the refi was actually going to go through... then at the last minute they declined it for the very reasons I told them I was concerned about when I applied for the loan! Literally, the very last minute! An exercise in futility!  So much time and effort wasted. Ugh. It still makes me mad to think about it - and I'm not ready to try again just yet.
I also quit dating this year... After the last guy who seemed he could only be a perfect fit ... bailed out like a coward. No really, he was Catholic, divorced, but annulled before he ever pursued dating (yay, gold standard! ) and has college-aged child, so there was an empty nest with potential for me to be a grandmother, since I never got to be a mom! Whee!
We had great dates, a good time together, and a lot in common, but then this guy blamed God for his decision not to date me... (Oh please! God did not tell you to dump me in an email... THAT I KNOW FOR SURE.)
So anyway, no dating for me. I mean, I will date, but I'm not going to care about it.
When I was home at Christmas, I ran into an old high school classmate. Someone who got married right after high school, and of course is divorced now. I asked about her kids, two of whom are in their 20s... one more still at home. Kids in their 20s! That is so shocking to me!
I looked at her and said, "That hardly seems possible!"
She looked at me, shocked and said, "Oh come on TRS, we're old!"
Hmm. Speak for yourself! I'm still looking for a husband and hoping to have a family! But I guess if you've seen your own children meet so many of life's milestones, it's a whole different perspective. Yikes!
As for me, I'm still trying to hit the milestones - like marriage and children!
I had the worst Christmas I can remember. A whole week with my mom is just too much! Each day she made some nasty dig, and they all piled up and really hurt me. For example, talking about that friend with grown children, I mentioned that I'm still young at heart, fun loving, don't feel my age - so my mom suggested I'm not acting enough my age. Considering you only see me three times a year, how would YOU know how others see me? You don't even know me! 
Then my laugh is too loud, and my hair looks better curled, and I paused at a stop sign too long, I'm eating the wrong food, and drinking the wrong water, and all the "obvious reasons" I'm not married, and who I should have married, even though she doesn't know any of the men I've dated. I seriously wanted to go jump off the bridge in -2 weather!!
To you mom's out there - watch yourselves. When you think you're just making suggestions for improvement, you're actually making your child wonder if there is anything you like about them, just as they are! It's a good way to wind up wondering why your kids never come to visit.

Anyway, I'll never go home for a full week at a time again. It's not worth the pain.

This year, I finally sprang for some of the finishing touches in decorating my home. I bought a beautiful sofa in 2012, after saving up for years, so I finally knew what I wanted in terms of color, other small pieces of furniture and such.
I didn't really spend a lot... I guess you could say nickel and dimed... but more like $30 here and $80 there, except for the larger expense of an elfa shelving and desk system, and paint -- all of which made my living space beautiful and functional!
Looking at my finances though, I maybe should have spread it out over another year, but finally finding what I wanted (which generally involves antiques, which tend to disappear if you don't buy them when you see them!) I justified it with the thought, "If I can't have a husband or children, no family of my own in a house with a yard, I can at least have a beautiful home!"

At my age, what's the sense in waiting to have something nice? I should be so lucky as to have some sticky-fingered kiddos to ruin all my nice furniture!

After living here for ten years, it's finally so nice to come home to. I can feel proud of my home.

So that's my 2013 wrap up, the good the bad and the ugly!
Hoping for a little more beautiful in 2014. Realistic or not.

As for resolutions, I've found that I don't really settle on my resolutions until Lent. Which I think is just right!

For more Quick Takes, visit Conversion Diary!


Kate said...

HI! I'm here from Conversion Diary, and I was enjoying your post (congrats on the getting fit front!!) and then I had to say something when you mentioned Elfa since my husband does TCS installations! I hope you're enjoying your system! God bless and happy new year!

MrsK86 said...

Sorry to hear you've had a hard time with your mother. I've always had a pretty strained relationship with my mum for similar reasons, as she's always been very critical of me. Growing up she critisied my body, my interests and hobbies, and my alleged "laziness" (as going to school full-time without having a job on the side is apparently being very lazy). After I became an adult and moved away from home, she's been very critical of my hair colour (I dye my hair in a dark brunette shade, and she hates it as she sees that as an attack on her... yeah), going so far as to ridicule me for it in front of strangers.

These last 12 months or so I've decided not to care anymore, and I simply refuse to engage in those silly discussions anymore. If she tries to have a dig at me, I just smile and change the subject. I think it just comes down to the fact that we are very different people, and she finds it hard to relate to me because of it. After I started to limit my visits to only a few days at the time, we've been getting on quite well.

I'm curious though... what "obvious" reasons did your mother cite for you not being married? She probably doesn't realise that relationships and dating is something that's changed a lot since she was young, and she probably has no clue how to relate to you as a single adult.

TRS said...

MrsK, yea, i find myself saying as little as possible to her about my moms digs, because she dismisses it all as "helping".
It makes me realize that she's never really learned to communicate, she had children in an era where you told them what to and they did it... Maybe she thinks she can still expect that of adult children.
She and my dad never really communicated either... just constant bickering, despite dad's best efforts.

An example, my brother and I were arguing about something, and that's why I'm not married... Because I have opinions and don't just cave in! Never mind that no one aggravates me like my mom and brother... So no one else sees that side of me. When other people treat me that disrespectfully, I simply don't associate with them.

Kate, yes I love my elfa system! My dream job is to be an elfa consultant! Who doesn't work weekends!
I'd love to do my bedroom closet next! I even convinced my ex boyfriend to instal it in his home!

MrsK86 said...

She clearly doesn't realise that most men these days are not interested in a timid wife without opinions of her own... The right guy for you will love the fact that you are opinionated and can carry on a discussion.

I hope that 2014 will be a great year for you, when it comes to relationships and everything else :-)

Joan Nagel said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Joan Nagel said...

I really enjoyed your post! I also am giving up on dating, so I'm right there with ya! :) Looking forward to future posts!