Transition, and Other Things I Don’t Love

I hate transition. I tend to greet it with resistance and a middle finger. As my sister enjoys recalling, I cried when my family got rid of the first refrigerator I had ever known. A traumatic childhood, I know.

JD and my first few years together have been marked by a lot of joy and a lot of change. We’ve followed each other to Cairo, DC, and Denver. We’ve had jobs, we’ve not had jobs, we’ve lived in one room, we’ve bought our first home, we’ve adopted a dog, and we’ve adopted another dog. For someone who likes stability and routine (hello 9:30 bedtime and sleepytime tea), this has been both uncomfortable and challenging.

Change - Martini in Hand

I would like to say that I now welcome transition with open arms but that would be a lie. I accepted a lovely job as a copywriter last week (Someone is actually going to pay me to write about cooking, painting, etc…What?!). I spent two weeks agonizing over the interview process and hoping that I wouldn’t recreate my worst interview ever (an experience that included such an immense amount of sweat that it dripped into my eyes and mouth making me so self conscious that I broke into hives).

They did not need to mop up after me in last week’s interview, and I got the job. You might assume that my suffering ended with the euphoria of a dreamy job offer, but don’t worry, I can find something to worry about in even the best of times. I switched gears to dread of the inevitable two weeks notice meeting now before me. When that too was over and my soon-to-be ex boss and I were drying our eyes and eating chocolates, I decided that perhaps some of this worry that I continually carry around is a little excessive.

The whole ordeal was a good reminder that while I can now control at least the outpouring of sweat that accompanies me in stressful situations, I still have a long way to go in my acceptance of change, possible failure, and the constant transition that is life.

Our home has been a huge exercise in patience. It will be months before we finish some projects and years before we finish others. In the mean time, I’m practicing loving the imperfections in our home and in our lives. Because, as my husband tells me over and over, the imperfections are what life is all about (or something like that, I’m usually rolling my eyes).

Change can be painful and transition, slow. You may not be to the point of embracing the change in your life, but maybe start by shaking hands with it.

Change 2 - Martini in Hand

Images via here and here

Resolutions, More or Less

martini drinker . mih

I didn’t grow up making New Years resolutions. That and flossing were things we just didn’t really do. Especially as one half of a marriage, I find myself constantly considering ways to grow as a better partner and a better individual. The start of a new year seemed as good a time as any to wrangle all of those thoughts and plans into one place and gain a little accountability.

1. More Satisfaction With Less – Crushing that constant desire for more. More clothes, more furniture, more space, more, more, MORE! Living in a house that slaps you with simplicity every day helps (oh, you thought you needed another martini glass? my shelves reject thee!).

2. More Gardening – Renting isn’t very conducive to garden tending. We planted in our very first Denver duplex but moved right before our tiny crop started to yield. We only snuck back once to steal squash…

3. More Simplification – Hand-in-hand with number one on my list, I’d like to continue to shed layers of unnecessary ‘things’. There is still kitchen cabinet space to be cleared, closet space to be opened, and everything in that room of shame that we haven’t been using for 6 months.

4. More Experience – We’ve spent the last four summers moving to DC, Denver, around Denver, and finally to our own little nest. It’s costly, time consuming, and exhausting. I’m excited to have our first official summer to ourselves! We have no excuse not to enjoy summer in the mountains and take little trips. I’m sure our movers/friends are relieved as well.

5. More Patience – I tend to want everything to be done at once. When we move (which we got very efficient at), I have the house completely unpacked within two days. When we moved into our first home, I took a week off, unpacked, and expected everything to be perfect. This was not the case. Tables, art, and rugs that had been fine before, were not fine now. Patience has been less of a choice and more of a commandment since we can’t afford to completely redecorate our first home overnight, so we’ll call it an automatically successful resolution!

6. More Yoga – I started practicing a year ago and it completely turned my body upside down. In many ways it’s the exact opposite of how I was trained as a classical ballerina. I’m forever in love with what ballet has given me but my year of Yoga has shown me a whole new way of viewing strength, health, and healing. I’d like to make it to my mat more often.

7. More Painting – I’m horribly horrible and I LOVE it. I could sit for hours and move the same paint around on my canvas. For the sake of my sanity, and not having too many paintings hanging around that make people wonder where we keep our invisible four year old, I’d like to take a class and create something a little prettier and less finger painty.

8. More Writing – That’s what this blog is for! Hooray for another resolution safely underway. A way to channel the thoughts in my head into something mildly entertaining and informative. You’re welcome.

9. More Curtains – Seriously. JD and I took down the Christmas tree in front of our floor to ceiling den window and realized we’ve been living completely exposed for six months. The previous owner, a mid-century purist, bless him, didn’t believe in window coverings distracting from the natural lines of the windows. We have a canvas cloth that appears to have been covering our bedroom window for the past 70 years and that’s all folks. While I don’t want to hang leopard tapestries all over the house, some simple shades might do the trick so that our neighbors don’t actually know we’re watching House Hunters nightly.

10. More Relaxing – I tend to way overthink and dwell on things (omg, i announced on the interweb that i like to paint badly. everyone is laughing!). I decree this the year that I take it down a notch, worry a little less, and enjoy a little more.

Here’s to a year of less stuff, more love, and plenty of martinis. martini