Val-Gal-Pal-entine’s Day

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Love: a simple word with astronomical effects on the human spirit.  The number of Valentine’s Day posts about how it was “Single Awareness Day” aka S.A.D., was staggering.  I feel like people have been missing the whole point of the holiday – to celebrate love.  Yes, I know it traditionally celebrates romantic love, but let’s break with tradition shall we?  I got the customary gifts of flowers and chocolates, and not from my mister.

I’ve been in an on again/off again relationship for the past three and a half years, and not ONCE has Valentine’s Day gone as planned.  This year we decided to take the pressure off of it since he had to work and I decided to go out with my girlfriends. GALentine’s Day was in full effect.  These ladies love musicals, theater and art so we found an interactive cabaret experience (booze included) with songs from Les Miserables.  Historically this is a very sad story. I thought it was fitting since our men were at work, but this show was HILARIOUS!  From drunken Inn keepers to a policeman with a ball gag, we were laughing the whole time.  (Check out #notLesMis – for info).

The show really made me think: you can truly change your feelings about history based on your point of view.  So let’s choose happy.  Grab a glass of champagne and toast those that are nearest and dearest to you – whether that’s a spouse, boyfriend, girlfriend, family member or best friend that you know will answer the phone at 2AM when you’re in a fight with said spouse/boy/girlfriend.  Let’s not miss out on the opportunity to tell them they are loved, because they may really need to hear it.

xoxo –

Suzanne

Cultural Crash Course

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This past week I spent cruising the California Coast with my parents.  My dad had training in San Diego and they were departing for a cruise from San Francisco, so I became their PCH chauffeur. This excursion lead us to many places I would not have thought of to go myself, including the USS Midway, Ronald Reagan Library & Museum, and Hearst Castle.

This trip made me realize how much California has to offer that I have not taken advantage of.  I have lived in Los Angeles for almost eight years and have been to exactly one museum of note. I have said many times how important travel is to experience art, culture and other ways of life, but I am not even immersing myself in my own.  LA has more museums than any city in America and I have only been to ONE!

I am on a mission to change that.  After pouring through “must see” lists, I made my own first small list to accomplish.  For you deal seekers like me, I also found when they are free:

  • LACMA – general admission is free to LA County residents with proof of residency after 3 pm on Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, and Friday
  • Abbot Kinney First Fridays – Free
  • Natural History Museum – Free on the first Tuesday of the month, except in July and August
  • La Brea Tarpits – Free general admission on the first Tuesday of every month, except in July and August.
  • Huntington Library and Gardens – Free the first Thursday of every month, but tickets are required in advance

Let’s get cultural!

Xoxo-

Suzanne

Depression or PMS?

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Have you ever had one of those days when all you can muster up the energy to do is get to the couch to turn on Netflix and binge watch on your favorite TV series?  That was me yesterday.  It was an all day pajama party with Oreos and my cat.  For some inexplicable reason, I could not make myself do a single productive thing.  I had an amazing weekend filled with art, friends and football.  I even made a dessert dip that looked like the Pinterest picture so I truly didn’t understand why I was so glum.

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Then it happened, I started my period.  It was three days early and (being on the pill) I wasn’t anticipating it at all.  I have felt “off” all month and chalked it up to the massive amounts of changes that are going on in my life right now.   Anyone would be stressed or depressed in the same circumstances right?  But was it depression or hormones?  Or do the two go hand in hand?

Last week when I had to go back to the eye doctor, again, he told me I had dry patches on my cornea.  The most common cause: Changes in hormones.  So I started looking even closer at what my body has been doing this past month.  I have been spotting for weeks, again being on the same birth control for years now, this is not normal.  Could this be the cause of my feelings of depression?

Women are shamed when they talk about their hormones and menstrual cycle, but why?  The fact that a woman can conceive and carry a child is incredible.  Every month a woman’s body prepares to start the stages of bringing life into this world.  Our bodies’ work for weeks then in a matter of 5-7 days everything our body has prepared for sheds and it has to start all over again.  Sorry men, but PMS is a very real thing with chemical side effects.

So, what are my next steps?  I am either going to 1. Change birth control 2. Go off birth control, and/or 3. Meet with a hormonal specialist.  This getting older thing really is a challenge.  Why was I in such a rush to grow up?

Xoxo-

Suzanne

Four-Eyed Frustration

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For well over a month now, I have been having eye issues.  It started as a double eye infection and has just continued to get worse.  I have been reduced to having to wear my glasses almost exclusively.  The other day, I could barely drive because the light was affecting me so badly.

I’ve worn glasses since the first grade and contacts since the 6th, so why am I having this issue now?  This got me to thinking… Is there a point where your body just turns against you? In the past few months I have had to add an iron supplement and Metamucil to my daily regiment on top of my daily vitamin.  This is to help with exhaustion and gastro problems.  I also have a theory that my liver needs a little boost (an accident in high school injured it and I have had health issues ever since). With that I am adding two additional supplements to the mix:

  • Turmeric – a plant that is the main spice in curry.  It’s used to treat many ailments including: stomach pain, diarrhea, stomach bloating, loss of appetite, liver problems and gallbladder disorders.It is also used for headaches, bronchitis, colds, lung infections, fibromyalgia, fever, menstrual problems, and cancer. Basically a cure-all.
  • Milk Thistle: (silymarin) – a flowering herb related to the daisy. In addition to helping with liver problems, it is also used to reduce cholesterol and is a natural anti-inflammatory and antioxidant.

Once I get my eyes back and these herbs kick in, I will be ready to conquer the world (or at least be able to drive safely).  Small steps.

xoxo,

Suzanne

I Have A Dream…

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You can’t celebrate MLK Day without stopping for a moment and thinking about dreams.  Everyone has them. Sometimes they seem so big that you don’t even know where to begin, but Martin Luther King Jr. tells us “Take the first step in faith, you don’t have to see the whole staircase, just take the first step.”  That is a lesson I need to remember on more than just one day a year because I can get so analytical about what the precise right move is, I become frozen.

During my reflection, I remembered some of my own dreams (big and small) including: LGBT equality, Veterans getting the help they need after serving our country, owning seven houses around the world, competing in an amateur ballroom dance contest, and being able to create my own music. This last one, I know I can take into my own hands immediately.

There is something magical about being completely immersed in a melody and getting swept away by it.  Beginning in elementary school, I played the violin, viola, piano, and was in choir.  Despite my parents’ nagging encouragement for me to practice the musical instruments, I couldn’t quite get over wanting to watch TV instead (silly youth).   I stuck specifically with singing and abandoned the stringed instruments. At the time, it was probably the right decision, but now I have to depend on other people or tracks to just play around.  Hating to ask for help, I loathe this.  I’ve decided this year that is going to change.  I have officially bought my first guitar.  So far I have learned exactly one chord and a scale progression.

Now I don’t expect to be the next T-Swift, but I am looking forward to coming to a campfire near you.

Finding My 30’s

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Happy New Year! In precisely 2 Months and 2 Days, I will be turning 30.  I think for most women this is a monumental mark in their lives, and I am no exception.  I did not think I would be 29, not married (or even close), out of shape, laid-off with no clue where I want to go with my career, and the closest thing I have to a kid is my cat. Basically: Lost.

After talking with my friends, my hairdresser and even strangers, I have figured out I’m not alone in this feeling.  Despite what TV, movies and magazines tell you, not everyone has their lives figured out by this point. Growing up in the Midwest, I was sure I would be married at 28 (later than average because I’m a little bit of a rebel), have my first child at 30 and second at 32.  Since that timeline has come and went, it’s time to start a new one.

In the upcoming months, I am going to try new things, learn new skills, workout and hopefully find myself in the process.  Join me in a very honest look at the road to Finding My 30’s.

xoxo

– Suzanne