Posts Tagged by friends

5 Years Ago Today…

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I married my best friend. 

We had the PERFECT day.

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I gained a HUGE new family.

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I had a special dance with my Dad.

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I smashed cake on B’s face.

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We wore Mickey Ears.

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We had saw the most beautiful sunset. 

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We ate, drank and danced the night away!

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We ended the night with a beach bonfire.

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We realized how lucky we are to have amazing family and friends.

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I never realized my life could get any better than that day, but 5 years later it just keeps getting better.  It is amazing how fast time goes by, and I still couldn’t be happier to be married to my best friend and the most wonderful man on the planet.  He continues to be my champion, my rock and my hero.  Yes, he drives me crazy sometimes and I know I sure drive him bonkers at times.  We’re not perfect, but we have found our perfection.  I can’t wait to see what the next 5, 10, 15, 20+ years have in store!

I love you B!

Kayaking Adventure On The Sebastian River

Last week I spent 5 wonderful days at Disney’s Vero Beach Resort with some of my best friends.  This was the third year we have made this trip and something I look forward to every year.  I mean how could you not with a view like this…

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For the second year, a group of us have gone kayaking one morning.  I have to admit that when I first tried it, I was not a fan.  It’s a very odd sensation being that close to the water and steering was a bit difficult for me.  Oh hell, steering is still not my strong suit, but at least I wasn’t as anxious about the whole experience this time.  However there were still many laughs over my improper use of the rutter and I heard “Sarah’s in the bushes again!” more than once.  🙂

This trip we ventured down the Sebastian River.  There was a tropical storm off the coast that made things a bit windy, so this was a good spot since it was protected by the trees. We were out for about 4 hours that included a stop for lunch and I’m guessing we went about 5 to 6 miles in total.

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We met our guides from Adventure Kayaking at a park around 9 am where we were greeted by a baby alligator sunning himself.  I had my fingers crossed the mama wasn’t around. 

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We were fitted into our kayaks and of course once I was given the paddle I had to do an overhead squat with it.  Just seemed like the natural thing to do…

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And like that we were off!  Kriss and I were the first ones out and were immediately enveloped in the peaceful calming waters…it really is amazing how kayaking takes you into a completely different world.

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I had bought this super cool waterproof pouch that you can take photos through.  The great thing is that is comes with a lanyard so you don’t have to worry about dropping it in the water and sinking to the bottom.  It’s great for capturing all the scenery and of course taking selfies 🙂

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One of my favorite things about kayaking are the cool views you get.  There are so many trees growing over the water that you can go under, which is nice on a hot day for some shade.  The scenery is just breathtaking.   

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Probably to best part of the day was getting to see a TON of manatees!!  They were all over the river and boy were they big.  Some were over 10 feet long!  Seeing those little noses pop up out of the water was just beyond adorable.

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We saw other wildlife including a gator that my friend Carrie saw go underwater right by me and then I manage to float over a swirling bit of water that I’m pretty sure was it swimming by.  Needless to say this caused me to panic a bit, which ended with me in a bush again…sigh.  Other local wildlife we encountered were a highly intoxicated couple paddling around in their canoe drinking beer at 10:30 am…that was highly entertaining.

Every time I do this I’m surprised how much I enjoy it!  I think I need to find somewhere up in CT where I can kayak.  I know you can do it in the Long Island sound, but I don’t the the scenery will be as nice or the company as sweet.

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Photo Credit: Rick Howard

Photo Credit: Rick Howard

Have you ever been kayaking?

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Is Honesty Really The Best Policy?

It’s been one of those weeks…where words either bite you in the ass or slap you in the face!  Either way it stings…

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I had a jaw dropping encounter yesterday that stopped me in my tracks and left me on the verge of tears for quite some time.  It also left me contemplating not only the words of others, but MY words.  

Yesterday I went to CVS to pick up my monthly prescription of Mesalamine.  I’ve never been shy about talking about my Ulcerative Colitis.  I want to share my ups, my downs, my crappy days…literally.  I’ve found comfort in talking with others who struggle with this disease and I hope to do the same for others.  However being open about talking about my disease does not mean it’s cool for others to make jokes about it.  Most people are on an oral form of this drug, but not me.  It’s believed that the oral form is what 7 years ago caused Acute Pancreatitis, a life threatening inflammation of the pancreas…no bueno.  Since I can no longer take the medication systemically, I now have to give myself nightly enemas.  Yup…this has been my reality for the past 5+ years. Does it always work? No. Does it keep my symptoms at bay for the most part? Yes.  Have I ever declared this publicly? No. It has been something I’ve only shared with my close family and friends, and here is why…

Ok really?  Do I have to explain why?  There is something taboo in our society when it comes to talking about your bowel movements, which is kind of ridiculous because it effects ALL of us!  Yes, we all poop…let’s get over it.  Well maybe I should listen to my own advice.  

Back to picking up that prescription of 4 giant boxes of enemas yesterday.  Because of the stigma associated with it, it’s never the most comfortable experience, but over time I’ve just learned to deal with it.  That was until today when the dude behind the counter said, “What, is this all for a party?”  Really?!?!  You work at a pharmacy and this is what you say to someone??  I wish I had some witty comeback for him, but I was so shocked that all I managed to say was “I wish!”  Ugh.

I left as quickly as I could, got back to my car and was rattled.  I texted B to tell him what happened and he immediately had that witty response for the dude to made me chuckle, but I was still upset for most of the day, which got me to thinking…  That dude didn’t mean any harm, at least I hope he didn’t.  I think he was just trying to lighten an awkward situation, but just didn’t do it in the best way.  In a way, he was just being honest.  Which led me to start reflecting on my own honesty this past week.  

In the span of one week, I have managed to seriously offended two of my closest friends due to my honesty.  When I get close to people, I don’t hold back.  I share my true feelings and I’ve come to realize that it can be a bit harsh sometimes.  Maybe my delivery comes out cruel when it was meant to be joking, or maybe a truthful remark is just too harshly conveyed…I’m not sure.  Maybe that brutal honesty isn’t always the best policy, even if I think I’m just being funny, helpful, whatever….maybe it’s just hurtful.  Hurtful like the CVS dude was to me.

I have since apologized to my friends and hopefully they aren’t holding resentments (they told me they weren’t so I hope not!!!) but that doesn’t mean this past week hasn’t been an incredible learning experience for me. It’s important to choose your words wisely, especially with the ones you love because those words mean even more to them.  I would never purposefully hurt them…I love them.  However this doesn’t only hold true just for the ones you love…we should be kind and thoughtful to everyone, even that douchey CVS dude 😉  We all have our faults, but I hope and believe that most humans actually give a shit about each other and want to be kind.  But with that, does it mean that honesty isn’t always the best policy? 

I love my friends and family…more than I could ever express in words, but sometimes maybe too much where I say things that shouldn’t be said, or that could be just softened a bit.  I find it hard to find my filter at times, but all I can do is learn from my mistakes and keep getting better.

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So That’s It???

Friday I left a job after 5 and half years.  I did it with a clear head and no regrets.  It was the best decision for me.  It has caused me a ton of anxiety and honestly I still feel like I have to get up and go to work tomorrow.  This is an exciting new chapter, but I can help but be slightly sad.

I spent my last week cleaning my desk, tying up loose ends and getting as much detail together about upcoming projects as I could.

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I tossed a giant garbage bin full of paper.  I tossed 5 years of work, of my life.  All of my things, reduced to one bag.

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It didn’t seem real until the final few days….basically when the talking stopped.  Everyone was quiet around me, there was a lot of whispering.  I started feeling uncomfortable and I just wanted to leave.  I worked in a small 6 person office which made it even more awkward.  On Thursday, I cried as I said goodbye to my coworker who has been my partner these past 5 years.  She started about a month after me and she will be leaving a week after me.  We shared a brain and many laughs…that was hard.

On my last day, I was at my desk for 2 hours before anyone talked to me and that was another coworker who I’m friendly with.  About an hour later, my manager came over hugged me goodbye and wished me well.  Told me to keep in touch.  It felt genuine, but that’s what you say, right?

It’s no secret that I have had a strained relationship with our CEO ever since she came on board 3 years ago.  We never saw eye to eye and to say she is lacking in integrity is an understatement.  That is what ultimately led to my decision to leave.  You can only work for someone like that for so long before it really begins to take a toll on your own integrity. I’ve always enjoyed the work I’ve done, our Board of Directors and our members.  I would’ve loved to help grow the Association even more, we do great work, but when you see that bad decisions are being made and your work is not being represented appropriately or valued…it’s time to move on.

I’m sure she was happy to see me go.  No one to challenge her anymore, no one to see through her.  This was clear by how I was treated like a stranger in my final days.  Just a goodbye and a wave as I walked out the door.  No thank you, no lunch, no card.  5+ years of hard work and dedication reduced to a smile and a wave.  That was it…  I didn’t expect much, but I couldn’t help but feel horrible as I walked out the door.  I came home and felt sad on a day I should be celebrating my new life.  

But all can be cured with good people, good food and a lot of laughs 🙂  B took me out to our favorite restaurant Caseus where I had the most delicious Stonington scallops followed by lemon cheesecake.  

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Then some good friends came over and we drank a lot of wine and watched funny videos until 3 am.  I even got congratulatory flowers!

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And that’s what life is really about.  Not the people who bring you down, but the people who lift you up.  The experiences that make you smile, make you feel good.  I’m proud of the work that I’ve done, but those last few days really made it clear that I was not meant to be there anymore.  While I’m still a little sad, I know that will all go away next week when I can really focus on me.  On what I want to do.  How lucky am I?  No room for sadness here…good riddance.   

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A Thankful Birthday…

Today my mid-30s become a reality, but that reality is quite different from what I thought it would be.  I can’t really pinpoint what I thought it would be, but I do know that I never thought 34 would be as much fun as it actually is.  

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When you are a kid, you always think of people who are 30+ as OLD and they no longer know how to have fun.  Well I’m not sure what 30 year olds I met when I was younger, but it definitely wasn’t me!  I never thought I would feel this young at my age.  Aside from all the craptastic things that have been going on the past two months, I can honestly say this is the best I’ve ever felt.  Both physically and emotionally…I’m the best I’ve ever been.  Let me tell you why…

I’m finally comfortable with me.  Looking back, I HATED my 20s.  I had no idea who I was or what I wanted to do with my life.  I was a flailing mess.  I often think that a do-over of my 20s would be nice, but if I was really put back there, would I have a better handle on things?  Probably not.  I’d still be a hot mess of emotional baggage and self loathing trying to find my way.  Blech…good riddance 20s, I’m glad I never have to see you again.    

I am comfortable in my skin.  I have always been the heavier girl.  I’ve never been thin and I don’t ever remember a time that my thighs didn’t rub together.  I remember being called “thunder thighs” by my crush in the 7th grade and being mortified even though I wasn’t quite sure what it meant.  But even through years of ridicule for being the chubby girl, I never let it bother me or define me.  I love my thick thighs because the give me strength.  My big boobies are sensual and desired by men and women alike.  And damn…my body is just too bootylicious for ya!   

I am striving to be a healthier me.  I didn’t start on this healthy living road until after I was 30.  I was a smoker, drank heavily, dabbled in recreational drugs, ate very poorly and hardly exercised.  You know…I was invincible. That obviously started taking a toll on my body and I knew this was not the way I wanted to continue to live my life.  I am nowhere near perfect or the epitome of healthy living, but I do strive to be better.  I’ve been 4+ years smoke free, I make healthier food choices, I exercise on a regular basis and I now know the importance of rest.  Who would’ve thought that I could ever run a full marathon, 7 half marathons, 2 10-milers, 2 10Ks, & 6 5Ks?!?  Plus I can lift way over 100# over my head and 225# off the ground?!?! AND all of those things happened after I was 30! Badass comin’ at ya!

I have found a strong core of people.  Being an only child, I have always been a bit of a loner.  I’m perfectly fine sitting home alone with a cat on my lap and watching bad TV. Crazy cat lady hasn’t been far off from my ambitions in life.  However in the past few years I have found an amazingly wonderful group of people that have not only enhanced my life, but have made me want to be a better person.  They have pushed me out of my comfort zone, challenged me, laughed with me, cried with me and have overall just made me want to be a better person.  I have found compassion, love and humor through each and every person who I have the privilege to share my daily craziness with and for that I am forever thankful.  

I have the BEST partner.  Things always seem to come back to B around here, but really how could they not.  He is my strength, my soulmate, my laughter and my love.  We speak an unspoken language that is impossible to explain to anyone else.  There is no one on the planet who I could possibly feel more comfortable around or share my deepest thoughts and secrets with.  I am beyond lucky to have found my soulmate who stands by me through the worst and supports me in my crazy.  I could never be the person I am today without that support and stability…my rock.

I know that things can only get better from here because I am motivated.  I’m not perfect…I skip workouts, I have too many cocktails, I have a cupcake addiction and I have a love affair with cheese.  BUT I’m always trying to be better and that’s the best I can do.  I am thankful for all of the wonderful things in my life and I will never take that for granted.  

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