On Wednesday, I lost my wallet. Of course, I did not discover the loss until after driving downtown to meet with a client, to the gym for a second practice, and then stopping at the bank to make a deposit, wherein I noted the distinct lack of wallet containing my ATM card and my drivers license.

By driving without a valid license in my possession, I was effectively breaking the law.

No, I did not call M from the bank parking lot asking him to come retrieve me and save me from outlaw status. I drove the half mile home idly wonder where I might have left my wallet, but even then I was not especially panicked or worried about it. It was either rumbling around on the floorboard behind me, having dislodged from my bag at some point, or it was on or in my desk at the office, most likely sitting right next to my computer and buried under a pile of papers I had been working with. Worst case scenario if it was lost? Getting a replacement drivers license and the phone calls to cancel credit cards (3) and ATM cards (2). Inconvenient but not the end of the world. And if someone must resort to theft they likely needed the less than $40 in cash contained therein far more than I do.

Thursday morning I continued my lawbreaking ways by driving to the gym for my training session with J. I did not report that I was potentially a fugitive; J might have dumped my ass for being a criminal. Or maybe I might have gained additional prestige for being such a rebel without a clue? Either way, the topic did not come up.

Then I drove home to clean up and get to the office, driving again, breaking the law with impunity. Where I found the wallet on my desk and buried under a 2 inch stack of expense reports. I remembered getting it out for my credit card to make an online donation – one of the associates has a brother doing a charity bike ride from San Diego to San Francisco. Because my wallet is fairly large and vividly red, I typically do not miss it when packing up for the day. Unless I have buried it.

While my spree of criminal activity lasted less than 24 hours, I find myself completely unremorseful. I remain, for the most part, a productive member of polite society. Besides, I live in California; one must be far more politically incorrect that I am to incur the wrath of authorities.

Giving Thanks in 2016

M and I have been hanging our Christmas lights and chatting with friends near and far much of the day thus far. We are meeting the kids and a few friends for dinner at a restaurant in a bit, then returning home to turn on our newly purchased and hung lights for the final weeks of 2016 we get to enjoy them.

Every year for the last Christmases we have actually lived in this house we have tried to get our lights hung Thanksgiving day or the weekend after. Every year it has been December before we got it done. Finally, this year, we have the lights we wanted. Our first year we bought late and got our “better than no lights” choice. Last 2 years we have had those hanging/dangling lights that are nice at night but look yucky in the daylight hours. This year, we finally have the set we’re delighted with and cannot to return home tonight and see them blinking and twinkling in the darkness.

Yeah, it really does not take much to make me ridiculously happy.

C and A are leaving for their new jobs and home in Tampa in just 2 weeks. Eeeek! Originally it was January, but their firm is working feverishly to close their center by the end of the year, so they are moving about 6 weeks sooner than originally thought. While we are very happy and excited for this next chapter in their lives, ain’t going to lie – I will miss the security of having them just a few exits down the freeway.

On the other hand, Disney World in 2017 seems like a much closer reality than it was a few months ago. I have a friend who lives in Virginia who travels with his parents to Pensacola every year, and with some advance planning we could get to see them while were are there as well.

As a family and as a tribe we had our share of ups and downs this year. There were job losses and changes. There was serious, life-threatening and life-altering illness, auto crashes, unexpected and terminal car breakage, and other shit happens life stuff. Fortunately, these matters caused discomfort, anxiety, fear, and inconvenience in the moments, but in each situation work-arounds were achieved, resolutions and solutions found. We also had 2 weddings that went off spectacularly and without a lot of drama-trauma, only great joy, families joined, new friendships born, old friendships reaffirmed.

Near as I can tell, no one is homeless or starving again this year. Wishing my realm we are mostly healthy or on the road back to health, happy, looking forward to the days ahead … meaning those that come AFTER the holiday madness.

So I have much to be thankful for again this year. Especially to you, my faithful blog readers, commenters, friends. If you are celebrating the Thanksgiving holiday with us, I wish you and your family a warm and wonderful holiday. If this is just Thursday in your part of the world, best wishes for a good day to you as well.



This week’s somethings

I feel a bit emotionally whiplashed this week, although the good is outweighing the not so good.

One of our cats puked on the new deck. Cat vomit is unpleasant no matter how positive a spin you try to put on it, but when it’s the new deck, we have not yet had opportunity to put the mat down, and he coughs up some really gross combination of hairball and cat food – it is even worse than usual and not a great start to getting out the door for the workday. The brighter side? I was on my way out for the office and M was just getting home from his run … guess who is tasked with cleaning it up? Sometimes being the sole earner in the household has is perks.

The helicopter parent issue is mostly resolved. Staffer was seeking private audience with me shortly after I returned from lunch. She was so embarrassed and so angry with her mother for leaping over appropriate boundaries and apologized repeatedly and profusely. She was relieved and happy that I saw no reason to escalate it beyond our discussion and promised me the next time anyone from her family contact me it would be because of some dire family emergency. I am trying to see the phone call as a silver lining, because she seems to be coming round to the idea that I am a resource meant to help her and not the behavior nazi reporting her every misstep. But then shortly thereafter another dust-up with another associate and it feels like we have not reached lift-off on the seriousness of the situation.

Work is kicking my ass, and I feel really tired despite adequate sleep. While on paper I seem to be getting enough sleep, I feel mentally exhausted today and so happy it is Friday … even though Friday is rather meaningless to me in the overall week-long picture. No client meetings this weekend, but I do have work that I will need to do at some point. Mostly, though, I am feeling a mandatory need to disconnect and recharge my batteries. It has been an fatiguing week. The problem with this type of fatigue is it weakens my holds on negative girl, who has escaped captivity and wreaked some minor havoc and elevated my anxiety this morning. One of my private clients had a banking issue – completely his fault but he needed my help unraveling it – and I was feeling panicked by the problem. For whatever reason anxiety tends to make me feel more omnipotent than usual and as if I were to blame for his failure to address the issue when I brought it up 6 weeks ago. Sucks to be me when I and I alone am the root of every problem known to modern man.

Exercise and healthy eating may be too much of a good thing. Maybe that cheeseburger did more harm than I realized – I am suddenly sick of eating chicken and vegetables and feel the urge to binge on puffy cheetos and peanut butter sandwiches on white bread while reading pointless trash on the internet. I completely understand that I can take a break from the exercise and eat whatever food catches my fancy, but there is a personally expensive cost associated with both. Using heavier weights on the cables the last couple of days and my limbs feel like they have been moving giant boulders up steep hills, so I will switch to another List tomorrow and see what that feels like. As for food, I am completely on my own tonight for dinner and will get a good take-out salad someone else tosses together; I think I am tired of my own food preparation efforts. Inside my head I can hear J (it’s okay to take a day off, or even a few days off from the gym) and RD (no food is absolutely off the menu; have a small portion of something you love and typically restrict from your diet) in my head. Yep, I know; I got this.

Friends are sad, bored, scared, worried, and I have been and will continue to be a source of support for them. The traumas of the last week add up, yet I am happy to report mostly everyone is on the mend and starting  the bounce and trend upward. My young friend is still raw and tender from breaking off a significant relationship, but she’s young, resilient, and very strong; I can already see and feel the signs of resolve in her tones. Friend J got the cast off his broken hand and is very excited about having both hands mostly back in full working order. Bestie is facing surgery next week and restrainedly freaking out about being in the hospital, but that’s understandable. It is 24 hours away from home and she will be fine. Unfortunately, working in a hospital does not alleviate her taste for being a patient in one.

My issues are small cakes in the bigger picture of what others may be facing. But there are good things, too.

I received a glowing thank you letter and bonus check from a satisfied client. Last year I had a few one-time clients engage me to set up software on their time and billing systems. One such client was another law firm, and the first quarter of use has been eye-opening with regard to capturing billable hours and collecting those fees from clients. The letter itself was completely unexpected and the check above and beyond.

A client took me to lunch and picked me up in his italian sports car. This was an interesting experience, because honestly it felt like being strapped in to a rollercoaster seat without the speed rush. But I kind of felt like a cool, priviledge princess in the passenger seat. He offered to let me drive, but I declined. All I could imagine is scratching the paint somehow or worse. Lunch was good, too.

I have missed coffee, so I had a cup. Full of caffeine-y goodness in the middle of the afternoon. So maybe I am up all night, it was still so worth it.

My training session bank has been replenished. I am very excited about continuing my gym training without interruption and completely understand that this is a luxury line item in our budget. Every day I work makes me thankful that I can earn enough to support our pretty simple lives and afford J (and TM and RD … and an others I may have to add to my coaching village in the future) without having to sacrifice other things.

Overall good health continues. Despite an anomalous couple of days where things were wonky and running higher than normal for no apparent reason, most of the time my numbers are in the lower end of the normal range. I am very blessed. I have worked hard for it, too, but I still feel very blessed.

Anxiety and general level of freaking out is diminishing even further. Time passes, and I am slowly becoming more chill about life’s twisty turns and other people’s opinions. I still have no scale at home and do not use the one in the gym, yet clothes fit differently (better differently) and I must be doing something (or several somethings) right. My comfort level with the me inside the skin suit is slowly growing, and the skin suit maybe slowly becoming fitter to match.

So that’s my week’s most significant ups, downs, all arounds. It’s a good week, because I have a rich life. Sometimes I need to do a pros and cons list to remember just how fortunate, how, blessed, how truly rich I am.