I'm doing it. Again.


Ok. I signed up for CatholicMatch again.

*eyeroll emoji*

Oy.

They sucked me in with their good deal for a year subscription. A YEAR. So, I guess I am committing to that again.

I know it sounds like I am doing this begrudgingly. And that I am not very excited.

It's just that. CM and I? We have a love/hate relationship. Most of my experience with it hasn't been all that great. And I have loooooooooots of years of trying it out. Lots. Is there a point that it gets embarrassing to admit?

Anyway.

Recently, I experienced the joy and beauty of getting to know someone, having them get to know me, being attracted (I mean really attracted) to someone, laughing, letting my guard down, and truly desiring the best for this person... it lit something inside me that I hadn't really experienced for a very long time (if ever). I learned a lot from this little moment in time. And I think I will be forever grateful for it.

The desire to experience that and have it be part of my life was lit.

Then the holidays happened. And I had a bit of a rough patch. And... I'm trying to climb back up.

Enter CM.
Again.

As I hit the submit button to pay for my subscription, I prayed that it would be a good experience this time. I asked the Lord that it would be ENcouraging instead of DIScouraging. That I will be open to whatever can happen.

I pray for my husband every night. Perhaps I have scrolled through his profile already. Or maybe he will sign up soon? Or maybe I will just meet him the good ol' fashioned way- at church, at a Catholic event, or the infinite options for IRL meetings.

This is just another step to make it possible for me to date. To get to know someone. To meet my husband.

As an aside. Not everyone has to try online dating. It's one of my BIGGEST pet peeves when people suggest online dating (when you are still single after all these years) is THE thing that will help with your singleness. That's just crazy. I know many people who have met their beloveds online. But, I also know many people like me who have been in the online dating world for so much of their adult life annnnnnd still single.

God has a plan. So long as we single people are fully and completely open to that plan, things will unfold as they are meant to. Including when and how we meet our spouse. Keep praying. Keep hoping. And keep doing what you need to do to put yourself out there.

Pray for me, ok?
Pray that CM and I can have an ok relationship this time around.
And that the Lord's will be done.

For fun... here are my previous online dating posts and tips. Because- GET IT TOGETHER DUDES! Write back. Ask to meet in person. Let's get this going.

Online Dating Tips I
Online Dating Tips II
Other musings

What are your thoughts about online dating?! Tried it and loved it? Tried it and hated it? Want to try it?


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Enough


Here I am. Sitting in my beloved yellow chair.

Getting ready for a new week, when I feel like the last week just flew and I have nothing to account for it.

I spent the majority of this last week going from work to the hospital to home. My grandmother was getting checked out for a little passing out episode. She finally made it home and I spent the weekend at my grandparents' house.

It's never easy to have a family member in the hospital (no matter how serious the situation is), and then being the medical person in the family always adds another layer of being "on."

Amongst all of that... I find myself wondering if I have done enough for my grandparents. For my family. Yes, I was present... but was I really giving of myself? Should I have been more compassionate and joyful?

The last few of my therapy sessions have been about the truth of me being good enough.
Me.
Just as I am.

It's a constant struggle for me. It's one thing to know I am good enough. But, it's another to believe I am good enough. To allow that truth to penetrate my thoughts and actions and whole life.

I have mentioned this many times throughout this blog... I am living a life that I didn't exactly think I would be living. Yet, this is the life that the Lord is calling me to live right now. Isn't that good enough? Isn't this life good enough?

See what's happening here? After a nudge from a friend (and the Holy Spirit), I have decided that this 32nd year of my life, I will focus on the concept of "enough." In all aspects of my life. I have never been a word for person- ya know, those people that feel a pull towards a word and it becomes their theme for the year- but, there is no denying that I must work on this.

Believing that I am enough.
That I am doing enough (for me, for others, for work, etc).
That the Lord's will is enough for me.

I am hopeful that I am retrain my thoughts and feelings so that it's easy to see and believe this Truth.

Are you a word person?
How do you retrain your thoughts?


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Five Years

A lot can happen in 5 years.

I mean, a lot can happen in any about of time, but 5 years seems like a significant amount of time, ya know? Don't so many parents have those moments like, "How in the world do I have a FIVE year old?!"

Anywho... in my life the last 5 years have been full. Very, very full.

Five years ago yesterday, I left for Honduras.

I had just left my awesome job, ended a whirlwind couple of months of travel to visit all my family and friends that I wouldn't see for over a year, and then hopped on a plane to a place I had never been to follow the Lord's call to serve. Him. The children. The poor.

While there, I had some of the best experiences of my life, and some of the toughest. Being there was harder than I ever thought- emotionally, spiritually and mentally (maybe physically if you count all the times I was sick and such!). Not because of the service I was doing. Not because I had to deal with cold water and roaches. And not even because some of the things that I saw were just heartbreaking.

It was because I was broken, and I didn't realize how much. The wounds- they were deep.

I was stripped away from all that I knew... new place, new people, new job, new language, new everything. And this stripping of all that kept my world together (friends, family, familiarity, etc), forced my wounds to surface and come to the forefront of all that I was doing. At the time, I just thought I was overwhelmed with being in Honduras. That I couldn't handle being there. That I wasn't tough enough be there in this situation that I clearly felt the Lord calling me to do.

It was a lot.

And I made the excruciating decision to leave. In the middle of my year commitment. It was a very tough pill for me to swallow. And look at my fellow volunteers in the eyes. I was sad. I was upset to be abandoning them. And the children. But, I just knew that I had to get home. And work on myself. To figure out what was going on. To heal.

I've heard many people say that you shouldn't do mission or service work if you aren't mentally "okay" for many of the reasons that I have listed above. I get that. I get that on a practical level because you can't be your best for others if you are dealing with your own stuff. But, see, it's precisely because of Honduras and my mission work that I realized how broken I was. I didn't plan on it. I didn't do it maliciously. It can't be a blanket statement for all people... no one would take the leap to do the mission work that the Lord needs to be done. The way He works is mysterious and doesn't always make sense to us on the outside. And it's taken me a while to not be ashamed of the fact that I did have to leave. I did, and it's part of my story. And I still wish many times that I could have done it differently. But, that's not how my life unfolded.

That moment of getting on the plane to Honduras 5 years ago to serve, deciding to leave 9 months later, was just the beginning of the crazy awesome. I:

  • Became a Godmother
  • Moved to Southwest FL
  • Became a school nurse
  • Started a young adult group at my parish
  • Began therapy
  • Met some amazing people
  • Traveled to some beautiful places
  • Got my "dream" job at my old hospital
  • Moved back to DC
  • Lived with my grandparents
  • Bought my first home
  • Healed
  • And continue to heal
Therapy has been the biggest thread throughout the last few years. I talked about things that I never knew I could talk about. I learned things about myself that I didn't realize. My wounds were ripped open. I was forced to see myself as a beautiful daughter of the Lord and how much that can play into how I view life. I have healed in so many beautiful ways, yet still healing in others.

I hope to share some more specifics of my healing and the realizations that have come from it at some point. But for now... reflecting on the last 5 years of my life, and seeing the beauty within it (when I don't always remember feeling the beauty at the time) has been good. I am no longer ashamed of many aspects of my life.

That is a beautiful and refreshing thing.

Shame is a nasty chain that holds on for a veryveryvery long time. It sneaks up at moments that you don't expect. The devil likes it that way. Shame prevents you from being completely you, being open to others, allowing the love of the Lord to seep in and change you.

I pray that if you are holding on to shame from your past that you figure out how to let it go. Give it to the Lord. He wants to spare you from it. He wants to love you deeply. If it's really deep and you are really struggling, please consider talking to someone. Therapy has changed my life. And there is definitely no shame in that. :)

The life that I am living is nothing like I hoped. I would be married and have multiple kids by now, yet this is the life that I am living. Right here. Right now. I am doing my best to let that be enough. That the Lord's will for me right now, is this life. Today. And that is enough.

Please, Lord. Let this life be enough. I want this life, and you, to be enough.



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How about an OCM update?!

Well, it's October 1st.

October. First.

Nuts.

I could write about Fall, and all the things. Pumpkin. Cozy sweaters. SCARVES!

It's also my patron's feast day. Happy feast day, St. Therese!!! Pray for us! I should probably write about her beautiful doctrine and all the awesomeness that she is.

Instead... I bring you an OCM update. Why? Well, why not?

I haven't written about it in, ohhhh... a year and a half. I figured now is as good a time as any to provide a little update!

Here are all my related OCM posts:
My Oil Cleansing Method Experience + the Clarisonic Mia 2
An Oil Cleansing Method Update
No Makeup, huh?!

What's better than before and after, er, now pictures?!



Annnnnnd TODAY!

October 2016
This is seriously amazing! :) I love doing this... it gives me such a great perspective on how much my face has improved. I see it everyday, so, of course, I am my own worst critic. I see everything. But, this!

HOLY MOLY! I CANNOT BELIEVE THIS!!!

Right cheek.

So exciting!!! No Makeup.
Also. Crazy long hair.
Guys. I am comfortable running errands, going to work, going out, etc WITH NO MAKEUP. I don't constantly think about what people may possibly me thinking when they look at my face. Gosh, I don't know if I ever thought I'd ever be comfortable in my skin. 

I am TOTALLY comfortable in my skin. Ah! PTL!

What am I doing, you ask?! THE SAME THING!

The Oil Cleansing Method with coconut oil. Interestingly, I have NOT used the Clarisonic in over a year. I can't really tell you why I stopped. But, I did... and for right now I am ok with not using it.

My method continues to be this...
BED TIME:
  • Take my eye makeup off and brush my teeth
  • Scoop some coconut oil into my hand (maybe a nickel size) with a 
  • Rub the oil alllll over my face and jaw line
  • Wipe off with hot wash cloth (as hot as you can stand it)
  • May take a few times to get all the oil, makeup, etc off
  • Rinse out washcloth
  • Splash some water on my face
  • Pat dry with towel
  • Go to bed
MORNING:
  • Wipe face with hot washcloth
  • Take a leeeeetle bit of coconut oil and rub on face as moisturizer
THAT'S IT!!

Really. It's that easy.

I say this all the time but I will say it again. Please take the time to see which types of oils work for you. You may need a combo. You may need something completely different than coconut. Your skin may react differently to certain oils than others. Take the time to find what will work for you. :)


For me. I loooooooove me some coconut oil. :) :)

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I love my momma.


I told myself I would write something today.

It's been a while. I miss this space. I miss this time of reflection. I have been teeeeerrrrrrrible about self care for the better part of this last year. And this writing. I think it will help. I am out of practice. I am getting distracted. Do I really have anything worth saying?

Who cares? I am here. Writing. And it feels good.

So... my mom went back home last night. She was here for 10 days. TEN DAYS!

It was the longest we had spent together for a long time... it was both a long and very quick trip.

There is so much that I could talk about. From the house drama that she dove head first into. To me still having to work and not actually seeing her very much. To the enjoyment we both had just being around each other again.


We both miss that. More on some days than others.

But, what struck me most about this time with my momma... is her absolute love for me. I mean, for real. Her flexibility and sacrifice of doing things she wanted or what she preferred... all for me. All while I am freaking out about the next house thing, or stressing about work stuff, or sharing some things that are difficult to share.

It's really something that I take for granted... ya know? A mother's love. Her willingness to sacrifice and do all the things... just for her kid. I know my momma loves me. I know she wants to do these things for me. But, it just seems so one sided.

How can I ever really, truly make it known to her that I do notice. That I do appreciate all the things. That my life wouldn't be as full without her love and sacrifice.

This isn't to say that we never get on each others' nerves. Agree on everything. Words hurt sometimes, ya know? We have both felt them over the years. As much as we would maybe not like to admit, we are very similar in many ways. We tend to take things personally, are emotional about many things and need time to process when we are feeling hurt or aren't seeing where the other is coming from. As we both have gotten older, we have learned -through some tears, some yelling, some silence- how to talk with more love. Reminders to not take things personally. Apologies. And hugs.

Those hugs are ever important now that we don't see each other on the regular anymore. Physical touch with people that you are closest with is so important, ya know? Hugs can do wonders.

I am just so grateful to my momma. For her love. For her words of wisdom and advice. Even when I don't feel like hearing it OR feel like it fully applies to me life. :) For her hugs. For her silliness. For her desire to want her kid to be living her to the fullest.

I love you, Mom. Thank you for being you. And hanging out. And making me buy all the things for my place to make it my home. ;)

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