Learning to be Selfish

I hardly do anything for myself. Now, I realize to some that sounds like it should be an endearing quality, but sometimes it’s not.

 

It’s not when I wear shoes to the point of holes, or let the bottoms of pants (especially work ones) get a little frayed. It’s not when I actually somewhat need something, but I manage to convince myself it’s not a need but a want (did you notice I put “somewhat need”? Yes, there is the problem. It probably was an actual need). There is a point when some self care goes out the window and it borders on self neglect.

 

I haven’t bought clothes with my own money in over seven years. Crazy, right? Well, I’ve gotten new clothes, or some just new to me. At the start of both of the jobs I’ve taken in that time, my dad took me shopping. I’ve received some gift cards of which I’ve purchased new clothes. My sister every so often cleans out her closet and I still get hand-me-downs at age almost-twenty-seven. Lots of it has to do with me previously not making much money, my husband being in and out of work, and just not lots of expendable income. Some is I just am cheap try to not spend money unnecessarily. But now I’m growing a tad in my career, do okay for myself, and am finally feeling like I’m getting a hold of bills and other expenses. So why not splurge? (And by splurge, I don’t mean splurge. I mean buy myself the necessities.)

 

Because I feel guilty, that’s why.

 

I received an award at work back in June for going above and beyond in my role. I had to be nominated for it and everything. While the award was more of a recognition, it also came with a $50 gift card to a place of my choosing. It took from June until about two weeks ago for me to muster up the lady-balls (sorry) to decide to spend the gift card on myself, rather than a dinner or something else for the husband and I. Don’t get me wrong, I love date night, and we don’t do it nearly enough. The thing that bothered me was that I felt like I was obligated to spend it on the both of us, instead of just me, even though I was the one that earned it. I don’t know why I felt that way. There was no pressure from the husband. Just like last year when I got an unexpected bonus at work, and although I asked and he agreed I could spend it how I wanted, I still spent it on him and blankets for the shelter we volunteer at.

 

So when I received $60 in amazon gift cards from the place I donate blood, I decided that those were for me. I didn’t know what I was going to do with them, but it was going to be for something I wanted. I thought about the extra essential oil diffuser we want for home, or other things we have talked about, but then it’s not really for me. So I perused what was left of my Christmas list I made for myself and figured out how to get the most bang for my buck. I ended up with two items for when I volunteer at the animal shelter, a book for work/personal growth, a stainless steel thing to rid hands of odor post chopping onions, and an adult coloring book/colored pencils. I’ve always liked coloring. I know that sounds childish. And I’ve wanted one since I’ve seen that “adult coloring” is a thing. Honestly, it made it in and out of my amazon cart several times. My internal dialogue of “it’s not practical, you don’t need that” to “but this is a gift for me and I want it” to “but you could get something you need with that money” to “just get it dangit. You won’t with actual money so use the gift card and use actual money on something you need“. Even I get dizzy with the voices in my head sometimes. Anywho. It’s ordered. And after my whole $60 splurge (actually, $59.00 to the penny) I did feel guilty. But only for a minute. That’s all I allowed myself.

 

Maybe that should have been one of my 2017 “resolutions”. Being more selfish. And no, not in a “neglect that family or responsibilities to focus on me-me-me.” But maybe to on occasion, make myself a priority. Not so much a priority, just make myself not last. A little self care.

 

That’s not too selfish, right?

 

 

*Funny story related to Amazon. So I use my sister’s amazon prime account. And somehow things reset after I selected the shipping address after I added my gift cards, so she let me know I accidentally shipped things to her office, and that was fine as long as there wasn’t anything “office inappropriate”. Well there wasn’t. But I also had ordered 1000 dog poop bags for when I volunteer/walk our foster dog. And yes, I know that sounds excessive and crazy, but when I could get 240 bags for the same price as 1000 AND the thousand came with two holders, well why not! Someone in her office opens all mail and packages for security reasons, so I just imagined them opening a box with 1000 dog poop bags, wondering what she was doing with all of them, then putting them on her desk and everyone else wondering why they were there. Then I just giggled to myself at my desk and changed the address. Ha!

2017

I decided 2015 was going to be our year. And 2016. And now I’m deciding 2017 will be too.

 

2016 was not without its challenges. Between the husband’s health, court, a heap of other baby mama drama with the ex sprinkled in, the husband not working most of the year – there were definitely some moments that weren’t my favorite. But there was also so many good things that happened throughout the year. Continue reading

Adult Holidays

I like the way the holidays are morphing as we all get a bit older. Gifts are more about time than they are about things. Our parents and the in-laws are growing more understanding of the holiday shuffle we have all have to do, and are becoming more flexible that the important part is being able to celebrate the holiday – and less about what day and time said celebration is held.  Continue reading

Foster Dogs, New Fridges, and Full Hearts

Where did Christmas go? It did happen, right? Man, it blew right past. With me being busy with school up until five days before, although all my shopping was done and gifts wrapped, and one “holiday” date night with the hubby, I feel like I didn’t get to enjoy as much of the “season” as I would have liked to. Once New Year’s happens, it’s just drab old winter and the cheeriness seems to go away. Hopefully not, but that’s how it has seemed past years.

 

The weekend before Christmas, our fridge died. Finito. Done. Not to be revived. No CPR. Well, my handy husband of mine tried fridge CPR by going to the Sears store for the part that I had my fingers crossed was the cheap fix, but that was not the case. Continue reading

O Holy Moly, it’s almost Christmas!

I’m alive. I promise. I can’t believe it’s already been two months since I posted. I’ve been looking for yours too. Really, I have. But it seems some others have been quiet. Is it just a busy time of year?

 

As of last night, I finished classes for the semester. Final grades won’t be in until next week, but per my own calculations, it looks like all A’s! I won’t hide the fact I’m quite pleased with myself. Working full time, full time classes (most likely only this  semester), and trying to keep the home life together. Check. And it’s almost Christmas!

 

I’m sure tons has gone on, but it’s probably all old news now. The husband and stepson are doing well. I’m looking forward to some extra time at home with them for the holidays, and at least for the next month the weekends we have that are usual my nose won’t be in a book.

 

I’ll keep this short and sweet until my brain gets back to blogging…

 

Wishing you and yours a VERY Merry Christmas! Stay safe, warm, and surrounded with love 🙂

Picking (step)Parents

My parents are divorced. They had a particularly nasty, long, drawn out, unnecessary anguish kind of divorce. I’m the youngest of my siblings, so my sister was nearly out of the house by the time it really got “fun”. My brother was old enough and could drive to at least escape. Then there was me – stuck in all the glory. Now I’m not looking for a pity party – honestly I’m not. I think it gives me a unique perspective and way to relate to the stepson that neither of his parents can.

 

I’ve always tried to be an advocate for him the best way I can, while knowing how miserable it can be to be a kid stuck between parents, and while also trying to truly look out for his best interests – not just for what his dad and I want. As stressful a situation like divorce is for everyone involved, I’d like it to be the least stressful for the stepson. Which is why sometimes it catches me off guard when as an adult, I still find myself back to being that kid – caught between my own parents.  Continue reading