Just some thoughts

I work 3 jobs. One of which at a local gym. It’s not great work but I like it (most days). This evening, (actually earlier in the week but I am lazy and never finished this post. I came across one of the most physically beautiful but ugly person I’ve ever seen. This woman was walking on a treadmill and giving a disgusted look to an overweight woman working out on a leg machine in the aisle next to her. You could tell she was judging the other woman. I’m thinking to myself, regardless of how you feel about someone that’s overweight, why would you”stink-eye” an overweight woman who is working out at the gym.. just like you? When I see women and men like “leg machine lady” I get really excited. Why? Because they are in the gym working it and I don’t know if you remember this about me but I was once tipping the scales at almost 400lbs.  I try to make eye contact with them and smile because I want them to feel good about themselves without making a scene. I remember how hard it was for me to come to the gym or Zumba classes at 350lbs. I felt like people would treat me like “treadmill bitch” and laugh and ridicule me for showing up. This is why seeing people that are where I used to be at the gym makes me so happy! I am not perfect by any means and have learned through experience and observation that even those “perfect, hard bodies” have extreme self image issues. I have walked in on conversation between women who work out regularly and look fantastic talk about how “fat” they are. Part of me wants to slap some sense into them but I get it. I will always struggle with self image, but I am coming closer to acceptance and have recognized the reality that my idea of what I should be just plain isn’t realistic. My body is scarred, worn out, stretched, and hung up wet. I’m dealing the best I can with what I left myself to work with, plus is.. I feel better than ever physically and I will take that even with my loose, marked up skin.

I read facebook like the daily news multiple times a day and some stuff gets to me. Like the chicks that post about how “thirsty” men are and they don’t want that attention but you are posting pics of yourself with your boobs hanging out for all to see!!! What the “fork” is wrong with you? What do you expect to get from doing that? Ugh!!! 

A friend of mine recently divorced and has a problem with the fact that her husband left her for another woman. All the while, she’d been cheating on him through their entire relationship. Why is that ok for you, but not him??? Where is your brain? 

I’ve had “friends” judge me for things I’ve done all while they were out there doing things worse than me?? I’ve been around the block and I know alot more than I let on. I always have and I will let you continue to make an ass of yourself to help you save face but don’t think you have EVER had me fooled. Empaths can spot a lie a mile away, we just don’t always let on that we know OR I second guess myself because I don’t want to believe you lied to me. I take honesty seriously. I can’t lie, it conflicts my very being and I feel guilty so if I try, I end up telling on myself anyway. Truth always comes out in the end. Why try to hide it?(but thanks for thinking I’m stupid) 

Annual workshop for back to school was last week. I’m excited and terrified all at the same time. New paperwork, ordering guidelines, procedure makes my head spin but it will all be ok. I got some new toys for work I got to put together Friday. Workshop was entertaining hanging out with another manager friend or two and making another one that I am pretty sure didn’t like me giggle and laugh cause I can make things entertaining. Not everyone is cool enough to recognize a unique and awesome soul like mine right away.

And.. I have moved, it’s been barely more than a week. My kids have come to stay with me a few times so far and I’ve had a few solo nights. It’s weird and different but good. The apartment model is next door so I have the best entrance way,   carpeted and blanketed with flowers and bushes. I feel like royalty walking the carpet to my door each day.. yes, I’m lame! It’s a small 2 bedroom apartment but it’s all I really need. The future’s so bright, I gotta wear shades!(if you sang that last line, we could be best friends) 

We took a personality test at workshop last week and before we even started, I told my friend.. mine is going to be off the charts because there is no explanation for me. It was a bunch of questions with 2 possible answers for each question and based upon those answers, you were supposed to fall into 1 of 4 categories. Mine was so close.. I got 12 maches for 2 categories, 11 for rhe 3rd and 13 for the 4th.. so pretty much that tells me.. I’m a box of chocolates, you never know what you’re gonna get! Hahaha 

I know I’m leaving stuff out because I’m scatter-brained right now and I have a headache but this is as close 5yo caught up as I can be right now. 

tschuss, readers!
Until next time,

Your rising Phoenix, Winner for life, super big ball of awesome, Jen

Life skills learned from Tetris among other shit (and they say nothing good can come from video games)MIL drama

Summer is flying by and with it change. Change is scary and good at the same time. Life is unpredictable and you have to move with the punches or you won’t survive. You may survive but you’ll be miserable. I am a creature of habit. I tend to stick to routines because they are comfortable but I am discovering more and more that it’s ok to change things up a bit and it makes things better sometimes. Having held down 2 jobs for the last almost 2 years now (just shy of a month or two?) I know for a fact that the more active you are, the better you feel. Some days wear more than others but for the most part I love keeping busy. I don’t know what to do with myself when there is nothing to do.  So I got restless and decided to rearrange the freezers/refrigerators at the summer job and this is where Tetris comes in. A walk in freezer is a “god-send” in a kitchen but the one I’ve been working out of has been a nightmare. I couldn’t find anything because it was packed like shit and there were multiple 2 door freezers throughout the building with the same items inside making it hard to place orders and keep an accurate inventory so I spent an hour or more (that’s how much time I have on my hands some days) rearranging and gathering like items and “playing tetris” with boxes getting things better organized. Hopefully the regular manager appreciates it when she comes back at the end of August and that I will have depleted a good chunk of excess inventory by then. I should have taken before/after photos because I am wicked proud of my accomplishments in this kitchen. I believe you should leave things better than they were when you arrive and I will. Last weekend (this was actually a few weeks ago now. I draft posts and get busy and forget about them)was pretty fabulous too aside from losing tons of pics from my phone. My Galaxy 6S that I got in November crapped out (heat damage I believe) and the only options I had were to send off my phone to Samsung without a loaner or factory reset after saving my photos which I thought I had done only to find only a fraction actually backed up and saved.. I was and am still soooo pissed. The reset didn’t work so I got a new phone and managed to also get a great deal on a new flatscreen tv for my apartment in the same trip. I now have the galaxy 7 and am still learning how to maneuver it. I have been on the hunt for a new bed as well and managed to talk a deal up with the salesman at The Dump on an already discounted amazing queen set. It is a foam and spring hybrid that feels like a piece of heaven! Things are falling into place and I am slated to move August 19th! It will be a new beginning, new freedom and a sense of independence I have never had AND a stone’s throw from the kids who can come and stay as they wish. I will not make them leave their home. I am super nervous and have a few more things I will need to get but the major stuff is done and I’m working on building up savings. I have taken on a 3rd job saturday mornings cleaning vacation rental houses. I have seen some of the most amazing homes in the last 6 weeks. It’s difficult work and we have been able to knock out 2 houses every week. Emotionally, I am coming into my own. I try not to let things get to me so much even though sometimes it is unavoidable. I have a great support system when I choose to use it but I still prefer to navigate my problems on my own and occasionlly use an ear or two to sound off frustration. I am still reeling from the realization that I may never get my best friend back and I am so scared she will pass on before I get the chance to go down and visit,  if her family will allow it. I spent a night after work last week (really a few weeks ago now)driving by our childhood homes reminiscing, letting the tears fall and having faith that while she may never be the same person I knew I got reassurance she is at least happy. I actually spent a few nights in the house I grew up in that week house-sitting for my parents and it was surreal thinking/looking back on all those memories flooding back. There is a spot in that bedroom ceiling  (now painted over) that I had written “I love Andrew McCarthy” lol. I love my family and we are far from perfect but there is a genuine unconditional love there that will never die. I got to spend a night talking with my mom which we don’t get to do very often due to my crazy ass schedule. I tended my dad’s massive gardens and it was therapeutic in a sense. I definitely don’t have the free time to keep a garden like that up on my own. Fresh, home grown tomatoes are the best!!! Today (again, weeks ago)I stopped by one of the local Salvation Army stores for shits and grins and found an entertainment center, end table, and chest of drawers, all solid wood for dirt cheap. I am sooo excited. 

It hasn’t been all great. Just when I thought things were going well on all fronts, a bomb was dropped on me again that week. I am fully aware that my mother in law has NEVER liked me but she pulled a big one on my family last week. (Again.. more than a week ago I’m lazy)Offered to buy Matt a car to be put in his name that Tami could drive on the condition that I signed a letter waiving all rights to the vehicle. Seriously? I HAVE MY OWN FUCKING CAR, WHY WOULD I WANT ANY PIECE OF SHIT YOU OFFERED UP? I got back to thinking on all the times my family has done things to help us out and never once was a condition set on any of it. Regardless of how things end up with Matt and I, the intention was not to ever take anything from him. I chose to get my own place, how would it be fair to ask him for anything? I am furnishing it on my own as well. We have our issues. That is the reason for this separation. I have things I need to figure out for myself. Call me an asshole if you choose,  but it’s something I need to do. I owe it to myself and my family whether anyone understands that or not. It really isn’t for you or anyone to understand. It’s my life and it’s worth it to me to not be such a miserable bitch all the time. I will not post details here. Some things are better left unsaid. In the end he turned down the car. I was miffed but I would have signed the letter and out of spite sent an email to my MIL thanking her for MY new car sonce I’m a bitch like that. No, I wouldn’t have taken it, but the satisfaction of sending the message would have tickled me pink. (And this is where I pick up with the new) Personal growth comes from doing things you are afraid of and that’s exactly what I’m doing. I am forever evolving, a true phoenix. I fall and every time I get back up I emerge stronger than before. 

I still train with a trainer every week because I still believe we all need a little push sometimes to make us better. I am a creature of habit that gets stuck into routine,  a trainer brings in fresh ideas and keeps me motivated to continue. Thanks to Reggie, I am currently on day 4 of post leg day DOMS… or delayed onset muscle soreness. Its only gelt in my left hamstring now but let me tell you, climbing up and down 3 and 4 flights of stairs Saturday AM was kinda painful but I love it, it lets me know I did something. Muscle soreness comes from the breaking down and rebuilding of muscle. It’s a necessary part of the process. I may never be where I want to be. I still carry alot of excess skin and some fat. The skin drives me insane to this day but I have to look on the bright side. My body feels better than ever. I have saggy bits now that will probably always remain unless I surgically repair it and Idk that that will ever happen at this point. I don’t wear sleeveless tops because my arms are atrocious and I don’t want to see them and sure as hell don’t want anyone else to see ’em! There are pics on file in the archives. Long time followers have seen them and stats reveal others search for them from time to time. (Wierdos)

Today I paid my first months rent and officially signed my lease. There’s no turning back. In 4 days I will have my very own place for the first time in my life.  It will be a struggle but I believe that struggle will be necessary and it will force me to overcome. I have been thinking about changing careers. I haven’t decided exactly what for but in the mean time.. I am seriously considering getting certified to become a Zumba instructor, if I do that, I could take on a class or two at the gym which would be awesome. Idk yet. Nothing is ever set in stone. I have dreamsūüôā

This is where I leave you til next time

-Rising Phoenix, Beautiful Disaster, cheeky sarcastic chic, Jen

Feeling the music live is one of the best experiences in life. Timehop can be a major asshole! Our days have always been numbered


Yea.. I said feel. Someone tried to correct me once.. “didn’t you mean hear?” No.. feel. Some just listen, I feel it. If I really dig it, I can feel it like blood pumping through my veins. The bass drum like a heartbeat and it vibes through me. I like my music loud. It’s the only other thing that’s been with me forever. It’s my very best friend. I use it to motivate, ease pain, release frustration, celebrate, mourn, to communicate when I can’t put into words what I need to express,   everything. 

It’s no secret I am a lover of music.. all kinds. Genre doesn’t matter, if I feel it and it moves me, I like it.

In my dreams I am a rockstar, my band plays all kinds of music, we focus on eachothers strengths, no one stays in one position, we can all play multiple instruments and take turns pending on how a tune makes us feel. Lofty dreams for an introvert. I had someone ask me once why I identify with introvert because they didn’t think I was one. Common misconception about us is that we are always shy and quiet and that’s not the case. It depends on our comfort level, who we are around, and where we are at the time. I need space sometimes to collect myself, groups exhaust me and if I can’t get away I can be quite antsy and spiteful.

So back to live music.. the last concert I went to was Pierce the Veil. I’ve posted on it before. I had such a great time. It was reminiscent of the 1st Smashing Pumpkins concert I attended, I was 15 I believe, the Siamese Dream tour. The energy was exhilarating. This is the same feeling I got from Pierce the Veil. It brought back some pretty fantastic memories. Memories of my childhood best friend who attended both Smashing Pumpkins concerts with me. 

Missy is constantly on my mind and I wish so badly I could hear her voice and know she’s ok. Missy was diagnosed with cancer ( I do not remember the name of hers) a few years ago and was told she may not make it past the next 2 years. It was incurable but they coukd prolong her life with treatment.It was found as a spot in her mouth that wouldn’t heal. She had what she thought was a cold for a long time.There was a tumor forming in her sinus cavity and unfortunately the cancer metastasized to the lungs and liver. She’s been through chemo and radiation, also tried a new procedure involving implanting radiation seeds into her tumors in the lung/liver. They seemed to be helping. The tumor in her face/sinus cavity was removed. 

Thanks to Timehop over the last couple weeks or so.. text conversations popped up from a year ago when a mass was discovered in her brain. She was scared and those messages popped up and I re-read them and my heart sank. I didn’t know at the time that they would be some of the last real conversations we would ever have. We were making plans for me to travel down in August after her birthday. I was already booked on a flight to visit my brother in CO for his 40th birthday and couldn’t afford another flight so I decided I would make the 10hr drive down and I was so nervous not having driven a distance quite so long before. Tami agreed to accompany me for the visit. We had a wonderful visit (aside from my teenage daughter being just that), visiting her kids school, I was introduced to Gnocchi (so good) for the first time, we went on a walking ghost tour, Missy in a wheelchair because she didn’t have the energy or stamina to make the 2-3 hr tour walking. Alex (her husband) was leary of us going because he thought it might be too hard on her.  A day after  I arrived we got the news that the spots on her brain weren’t new tumors but necrosis (dead tissue) from the facial radiation treatments. Better, but still not great. She was supposed to get testing for approval for hyperbaric chamber treatments after I left and I don’t know that they ever started them because within a few weeks of my visit she fell into a coma. It’s hard because no one really keeps me updated. I don’t even know if she is fully conscious and alert or can speak. A mutual friend of ours contacted me this am asking if I knew anything and sad to say.. I didn’t. I can’t get hold of her family that lives with/around her. The only contact that had been  responding to me is her sister in law who also lives far away from them  as well, until tonight. I reached out to Katrina (SIL)and learned  Missy has suffered irreversible brain damage from multiple bouts with pnuemonia that required hospitalization. She is receiving round the clock care from a live-in nurse. Her short term memory is gone and she does not recognize her children. She had to re-learn how to eat and walk and walks with the assistance of a walker. She is pretty much oblivious to her situation and is genuinely happy but you can imagine what kind of pain this has caused for her husband and kids and other family. I knew something wasn’t right, I could feel it. I’ve had that feeling for months and it was confirmed. 

I am so glad I “ovaried up” and made that drive last summer because it was one of the last couple of weeks she was still herself. I feel horrid and part of me wonders if the ghost tour was part of the beginning of a means to an end. There were mosquitos and they were biting (me at least) The Drs thought at first it might have been meningitis. Did it (tour/mosquitos)contribute to her getting sick, the exertion on her frail body? I was one of the last friends to see her as she was. Does Alex blame me?  Alex did reach out shortly after my visit to say that the visit was so important to her and SHE was so happy we made it down and that HE was glad I’d made it down because it made her so happy. Did he know then that things would never get back to normal her from here? As if it ever had post-diagnosis. There are so many questions I don’t have answers to and my heart breaks for him and their girls.

 Luckily, I did hear back from Alex tonight. I didn’t ask any of those questions but I got a little relief because he did respond this time as I’d been reaching out for months to no avail and I get it. His wife can no longer care for herself or their kids. It’s devastating. When I got the news, I cried. Hiding in a bathroom stall at work.

Missy and I had a unique friendship. We didn’t always get along and there was rumor around the neighborhood that I called the fire department on her house when we were kids cause she pissed me off. (I’ll never tell).  Her mom was always thrilled about me when we were growing up but she loved me, I know this. I was the only real friend Missy had that always stuck around and she was the same for me. I was there for the multiple surgeries she went through growing up. Spent many summer days in a hospital room at Portsmouth Naval Hospital during her recoveries. (She was born with a facial deformity) We grew up, she went to college, I started having kids and got married, she got married and started her own family. We have led very different lives for 2 girls that grew up a street apart in the same neighborhood however the friendship always remained the same. Not many can say that they’ve held onto a friendship for more than 30 years. We are the type of friends that could go for days, weeks, months and even a year sometime without talking but when we came back around we could talk like we hadn’t missed a day in between regardless of the miles the disagreements and life getting in the way. There’s so much I still need to tell you. I know that whether it’s in this lifetime or not we will meet again. Until then I have thousands and thousands of memories. I have always admired your outgoing attitude, your amazing strength, and bravery. You’ve always been one of the strongest women I know.

Friends, strangers, whoever is still reading, I say this all the time. You never know what tomorrow will bring. Do not put off on tomorrow what you can do today, forgive people even when they don’t deserve it and let go of the past because there’s nothing you can do to change it anyway. Say what you need to say and do what you need to do now. Check on your friends and loved ones often. Make sure they know what they mean to you. Our days are numbered. 

Til next time..

A very nostalgic Rising Phoenix 

Revelations from an empath

I have a very cynical view on humanity for good reason. I am an empath, I can feel the emotions of those around me. Some people are harder to read because I would rather believe what they say than lean on my own intuition. Sometimes I know my friends better than they know themselves and can spot a lie quicker than most whether I let you know I’ve figured it out or not. Sometimes it’s not worth calling people out. I need time alone in order to clear my head because I am affected by the emotions of those around me so much that it clouds my own thought process. Intuition and empathy are very real. It explains alot about why I am the way I am. Why I get confused about how I really feel sometimes because I’m tuned into what’s going on around me. I pick up vibes and am typically pretty accurate about my gut feelings about a person. It gets especially cloudy when it involves those that I love. I don’t always want to believe the things I pick up on. Pair that with anxiety and depression it can be a crazy, crazy place to be in. 

What bothers me most are people that lie/keep secrets so well that it doesn’t seem to affect them at all. There are cases where “what you don’t know, can’t hurt you” is a good thing. Times when the truth will do nothing but cause pain/misery but at the same time, I also believe that everything is always revealed in the end and imagine the pain that can cause later. I know what it can do, I’ve been on the recieving end of “what I didn’t know can’t hurt me” until I did know and it killed me from the inside. It’s one of the reasons I got to be damn near 400lbs at one point. I gave up on being happy. I let the pain creep into every aspect of my life and I was no longer living. That woman makes me cry, she makes me want to help people like me. Makes me realize that the weight wasn’t ever the root of all of my problems, but a consequence of letting things get to me. A product of a deep seated depression. I felt trapped, like life would never be satisfying for me. No one will ever be able to really love me. I still believe the last part. 

It was after recovering from “fat girl attack” (gall stones/bladder attack) and talking with my surgeon that I started the process of the journey I am still on. At that point I believed my fat was the root of all problems and making it go away would magically fix me and it hasn’t. It’s forced me to deal with demons I hid away behind the fat. I’ve had alot of support along the way, some gawkers that remain around for “the show”(some of my posts are dark and truly naked), some seeking help and advice, and others thanking me for being so blunt and naked for the world to see. I don’t share everything but I have shared quite a bit, some of it is embarrassing and I fear every time that my posts will change others view of me for the worse. Then I realize that if it does.. I really shouldn’t care because from the responses I have gotten.. I’m making a difference in other people’s lives and that was the ultimate goal all along. To educate, inspire, and perhaps make someone put there to not feel so alone. 

I’ve had alot of stressors recently and its coming time for my annual exam which around this time last year revealed abnormal cervical cells. After more testing it was revealed I had CIN2. Precancerous cells on my cervix. I had laser surgery to remove it in October of last year and at that time, it was assumed that they got it all. I am really nervous that they will find it again or it will be more advanced. I made a post on the whole scenario in oct/nov of last year and I’m glad I did because through that post, I found support from others that were in my shoes, and inspired others to not blow off their annual exam. The earlier you find these things, the better off you are. 

I am taking each day as it comes. It’s all I can do. Some days are better than others and I am still hanging on. Dealing with things in the only way I can. Alone at first and then leaning on the support of those I trust enough to share with. I know my worth but I don’t always recognize it. 

This is where I will leave you. The truth is always revealed in the end. Choose your words and actions carefully. They affect others more than you know. If you’re in a dark place, try to think of one thing that truly makes you happy and lean on those closest to you or reach out to a stranger, reach out to me. I listen more than I speak always. 

Til next time,

Phoenix Rising

If each day is a gift to be opened.. I don’t want to open it anymore.

“Things are better when you’re not around” “If you don’t change the person you show on the outside, you will push away anyone that actually gives a fuck about you away” “You’ve never supported me” “you twist things around to fit your agenda”

These are just a few things that have been said to me in the past 2 weeks that really hit a nerve.

Had a few meltdown moments in the last week, the worst of them.. Sunday, Gah!!!

It’s no secret I have anxiety and depression issues. Manic depressive, I have major highs and major lows that can hit within minutes of each other. For instance, the first¬†few days of last week (starting on the weekend before) were great. That Friday was the last day of school and then Saturday I saw one of my favorite bands¬†live for the first time ever with my daughter. Pierce the Veil.. yea yea I like them.. alot. Most people have no clue who they are and others hate them. I like what speaks to me, it ranges all spectrums. Music is an escape for me. I mostly sing when I’m hurting, jam when I’m pissed or hyped up. Lay and listen when I’m thinking (alot). Anyway.. it’s a coping mechanism for me. So.. I lost it in the kitchen of the place I am working during the day this summer. Alot of shit just hit me at once and the “flood-works” and “snot central” commenced. I damn near ran into a maintenance worker installing new flooring before I went outside and took a ride around the tri-campus area and I smoked. It felt good but not good enough. I came back and decided to sweep and mop the entire kitchen when I got back. I clean when I’m stressed too.. I never realized it was a habit or coping mechanism until recently. I’m an observer of others.. not myself so every so often a light bulb goes off and I’m like, Damn.. that’s what I do! Learn something new everyday!
I was pushed to the summer work site 2 days before I had planned to be which meant¬†I had one day to close down one kitchen¬†and close up my office instead of the 3 I had planned.¬†¬†Concert was phenomenal, and¬†one night last week¬†at work at the gym.. a member asked me for a date. I was taken aback. Not.. we should chill sometime.. a real date. At times, I am covered in sweat and this man saw something in me over the last year or so and got up the nerve to ask. It was flattering and while¬†I had no intention of accepting, I rode¬†on that¬†high for about 30 min. Granted I know now it was not as innocent as¬†it seemed after hearing¬† few things over the weekend I can’t repeat, this¬†man, like most people I encounter.. is a fucking douche)¬†Then my mind got to wandering and I started to get pretty down. I wanted someone to talk to and I got it in the form of a co-worker but it wasn’t what I needed. I needed my Rosie. The only one in the world that understands the dark place I go to without flipping out and telling me I need professional help. I’ve been this way all my life, I’ve survived 38yrs so far.. Fuck off!

And then the weekend came.¬†¬†¬†“Things¬†are so much better when you are not here” hit me. I wanted to die, I was thinking of ways to do it, car accident? Pills? jump into traffic? ( I’m still here by the way… before anyone shits their pants) I wondered.. how could I have possibly fucked up so bad to have anyone say these things to me? How can you hold so much hate in your heart to be capable of¬†purposely hurting someone’s feelings for your own¬†gain?¬†. It’s too much. I don’t know how I¬†to recover. Re-hashing it in written form is making me cry again. I don’t know that there has been a day in the last week that I haven’t fallen apart at least once. My days are numbered.¬†I don’t know¬†what time I have left.¬† I get all sides of the box, I really do, but again it doesn’t mean I won’t be hurt by it. I am way harder on myself than¬†anyone else¬†could ever possibly be. If you could spend a day in the tornado of thoughts in my head.. you could end up in the “loony bin”. ( I did get my Rosie time Sunday night)

Today, I got a message that I really needed to hear. I was letting all of the bullshit get to me. I am better than this. I am a Phoenix. I burst into flames and destroy myself only to build back up on the other side stronger than ever¬†and I remember the things that matter. “you have inspired me” “you are one of the strongest women I know” “you are not done yet” “you mean something to me”

and then today.. I say this all the time, but it was my turn to hear it.
“People need to learn that their actions do affect other people. So be careful what you say and do, it’s not always about you”

and this gem.. “People will talk about you till the day you die and there’s nothing you can do about it, so let ’em talk till their lips fall off. Long as you know the truth, that’s all that matters.”


and this, my dear is where I will leave you, in post leg day pain that will worsen the next 2 days…

til next time,


Phoenix Rising



Tough Lessons and change

One of the absolute worst feelings in the world is feeling completely and utterly alone even in a crowded room, amongst “friends”. Talk is cheap and without action, words are meaningless.

This blog used to be my release but I find that when I am completely honest, someone gets hurt and I’m stuck between..do I give a shit anymore or do I censor myself to spare feelings? Shitty part is.. I prefer total honesty. If you’re honest with me, you give me the option to take what you have to offer or leave it. Leaving seems to be what I’m good at lately.

I need to make good on the obligation to myself to stop devoting my time to people who only call on me when they need something from me. It eats away at me and kills me every time I realize I’m nothing more than something to pass your time when there’s nothing better to do or I have something to offer that you want.

I’m done chasing after people who can’t see my value aside from what they can get from me.

I was going to go all out and explain in detail what exactly has been going on but its not worth my sanity to rehash it again. Thanks to a couple good friends, I was able to say my piece and it’s now time to move on.

I moved back home almost 2 weeks ago but I am working on securing a single apartment (thanks Erica) close to home where the kids can come back and forth as they choose. I am hoping to be moved by August. It’s a HUGE step for me as I’ve never stepped out on my own before without the help of a room mate. It’s something I feel I need to do. It might be rough at first but this Phoenix can handle it.

School is almost over and I had the most flattering encounter ever at the gym Tuesday night. Alot of regulars have come to know me at least by face if not by name and will chat in passing. Or joke that I’m always here. One was there for my training session Monday afternoon and was impressed enough to ask me the next night if I would be up to working out together sometime? I was kinda surprised and we exchanged numbers so I am hoping we can meet up on my days off and put some work in. I talked to my boss at the gym to request a change in hours for July and August since I will not be taking summer off from school for the 4th yr in a row so I want to correlate my school and gym work schedules so I’m working the same 4 days all summer and will actually have weekends off. They are willing to work with me so I’m stoked! It also means I can get into the habit of forming a more regular workout schedule with the help of my new friendūüôā

As I mentioned before, I will not be taking the summer off. I was invited to work the summer program again at another school. I was leary about taking on the entire summer but it will give me time to rebuild savings so.. here I am. Working summer again. When I have time off I don’t do anything anyway and I fall asleep so might as well work, right?

I’ve had a couple really rough weeks emotionally but I’m hangin in and I’m still here. Thanks Marie, Rosie, and Nikki for being my ears lately. I love yas!

That said.. changes are coming. I’m excited, scared, hopeful all at the same time.

This is where I will leave you… semi- caught up. Drama free, I didn’t call anyone out this timeūüôā

Rising Phoenix on wings like Eagles,

P.S. thank you Matt. I’m sorry I overlooked you at first

Don’t Blink

I turned on the evening news
Saw a old man being interviewed
Turning a hundred and two today
Asked him what’s the secret to life
He looked up from his old pipe
Laughed and said “All I can say is.”
Don’t blink
Just like that you’re six years old and you take a nap and you
Wake up and you’re twenty-five and your
high school sweetheart
becomes your wife
Don’t blink
You just might miss your babies growing like mine did
Turning into moms and dads next thing you know your better half
Of fifty years is there in bed
And you’re praying God takes you
Trust me friend a hundred years goes faster than you think
So don’t blink
was glued to my TV and it looked like he looked at me and said
“Best start putting first things first.”
Cause when your hourglass runs out of sand
You can’t flip over and start
Take every breathe God gives you for what it’s worth

I’ve been tryna slow it down
I’ve been tryna take it in
In this here today gone tomorrow world we’re livin’ in
Now, don’t blink
-Kenny Chesney

My 20 yr high school reunion is happening this weekend. I still live in the area but I’m not going. There’s not anyone there that I need to see that I haven’t kept some form of contact with so… yea. I didn’t make the 10 year either, nor did I attend ring dance or prom. The people I hung out with most were part of the music department and it ranged all grade levels so there were only handfuls of us actually in the same class. I was not a sport, I was quiet outside of orchestra and carried resting bitch face before “rbf” was given a name. If you didn’t know me, you probably thought I was a bitch. (Still holds true) I don’t open up to many in real life but writing is another story. I dont share evwrything but I have shared some pretty heavy stuff.

I look back and they were some of the best and worst times of my life. I have pride in my alma mater. My class was the first to complete all 4 years at Tallwood High. Tallwood opened in 1992. The first graduating class was ’93. I loved and hated school. Maybe I’ll hit the 25yr reunion but I highly doubt it.

As I reflect, I touch on a couple conversations I had this week. Two people called me an inspiration and it’s touching. There are people that view me as strong, a fighter, an achiever and for the most part I am. I was forced to be. I’m just like everyone else but I know that some of this dark shit I touch on is happening with other people and just maybe, maybe by sharing my accomplishments and failures, it can give hope to others or let them know, they aren’t alone. I’ve been chastised for sharing some things but I feel like I have to do it. There are some details that I will take to the grave or to a few close souls but what you read is real. I’m human, I hurt, I want to be alone but I crave human contact sometimes, I fall, I get back up, I walk back with my tail between my legs on occasion and I will NEVER give up. Life is great at throwing curve balls and you just have to hit em back.

Last weekend something sinfully exciting happened to me. If you read regularly you have heard about one of my encounters over the last few years I call Randy.
I met Randy one night at the country bar I was frequenting at the time. I was being hit on by one guy at the bar that was making me really uncomfortable. At that moment someone approached me and asked me for a dance. (Enter Randy) When he walked up I knew he was ftm transgender but I didn’t care. At that point once we made it to the floor before asking his name I said “I will call you Jesus, because you just saved me!” (From the perv at the bar) I didn’t tell Randy at that point that I was married because I had no intention of anything more than a friendship forming there and it did. Randy, on the other hand believed he was in love with me. Pursued me to no end for more than a year. He would get jealous if we went out and other men gave me attention. Meanwhile, all along I have said.. I am married, I don’t have a relationship to offer you. There were incidents that happened along the way that should have pushed me away from my “friend” long before we cut ties. 1, he attacked me in the middle of a full bar where staff and other guests watched and did nothing until I managed to free myself. 2. He got upset another time we were out with friends and I spoke to another guy that he struck a conversation with himself. 3. The night he yelled across the bar that he hoped I’d catch syphillis from the man I was talking to that I assumed was gay. He was violently jealous and would profusely apologize for it later every time. I was dumb and let him back in every time. He went on deployment and left his P.O. box key in my care and we talked and got to be quite close until the relationship stuff started again. He blew up at me telling me that I needed to go back to my husband (whom I’d never left) or find some other guy that would rack up credit card debt on me, he had found a younger and more beautiful woman to talk to and went so far as to bring my weight issues from the past into the equation. The line was drawn, there is no chance we will ever be friends again. Let me clarify the credit card statement. Randy would send flowers to me at work, both jobs, he also bought me tickets to see the Phillies play the Nationals in DC behind the visitor dugout. I did not ask for anything and tried to refuse most things he offered.
So back to present day, Randy is still friends with my housemate. They regularly go to the gym and the bar together. Last saturday night I decided to come up and have a beer. It was awkward and I didn’t even want to finish my beer but I ordered another and continued chatting with the roomie. Granted.. the last contact I had with Randy, he told me not to talk to him ever again, lose his number, etc
So he approaches me and asks if I was going to sing tonight. I pretended I couldn’t hear a word he said. Was that a low move? Maybe, but a part of me is still really hurt by some of the hurtful things he said to end our friendship. He kept repeating and I kept ignoring. A few minutes later a guy at the pool tables gives me the “come here” signal and I didn’t think he was directing it towards me so I looked away and then he came over. I got a better look at this guy (he was hot) and he asked if I would play a game so I grabbed my purse and followed and stayed there the rest of the night. All the while knowing and gloating in the fact that this paired with my ignoring him drove Randy berserk!! I was ecstatic that this happened that night in a dead bar. I got picked up by a hot guy in front of an asshole that treated me like shit. It felt fucking amazing. The rest of the night isn’t important. Am I an asshole for gloating? Maybe… should I forgive and let go? Yes, because it truthfully hurts to this day recounting all of the nasty things this person said. I’m just not quite ready yet. We were supposed to be friends. Friends don’t treat eachother like that especially if you claim to have a deep love for me.(in your demented head) so, in the week that’s followed I’ve gotten 2 messages from Randy that I haven’t answered because I don’t know what I was supposed to get out of them and secretly I’m hoping my silence stings.

I am starting to believe I’m a magnet for assholes and freaks because that’s mostly what approaches me when we are out. I’ve had a prick hitting on me from the gym for more than a year that hasn’t grasped the fact that.. I have no intention of going “there”. At work I have to be nice.

All I want is someone that can talk to me and be there for me when I need an ear or a shoulder or vice versa. Someone that I actually want to talk to. I’m beginning to believe I won’t ever have that. I’ve been doing things on my own for too long. For 10 yrs, I raised my kids basically like a single parent with child support. Matt was never around due to his job. It wasn’t that he didn’t want to be around. It was the job that provided what we needed that unfortunately he was contracted to for years. I know you read, please don’t take offense to my honesty. You did what you needed to do.

We held it together for years that way. I still believe you may be the only one that could ever love me. Me, on the other hand am a ball of confusion and I’m still trying to figure shit out. Maybe I will be alone for the rest of my life. I don’t know.
Through all of this.. there are people that still call me an inspiration. I’m just trying to live and help support a good friend at the same time. I’m the perfect roomie.. I’m never home to get in the way. I work too much, but for now this is what I need. I think if I wasn’t so occupied at this time, I’d be in a looney bin.

I am still fighting my body daily. I workout because I love to eatūüėČ and have managed to maintain a 202lb loss for 2 yrs now. It’s the only thing I have total control of so I gotta make it work.

This started out as a walk down memory lane and was supposed to touch on making the best of the time you have here. “Don’t blink” because before you know it, it all goes away. I did that for so many years. Reflection and memories are a blessing and a curse.

That’s where I’ll leave you,

Til next time,

A real winner, never a quitter Jen