This is the part of my journey where I became a force of nature to be reckoned with. It was time to stop sniveling and focus in on who I wanted to be- with or without a spouse. I latched onto an idea- I needed stability. I needed a foundation. I needed a home.
This idea started really driving me. On top of the need to stay on top of my health to avoid slipping back into depression, I decided to get on top of my emotional health. I wish to no longer be so easily swayed by new distractions- there needs to be a bedrock upon which I am firmly settled, and this foundation is love, hope, and ultimately- joy.
So here is the phase where I did a lot of heavy lifting:
21) Weigh under 145: This is 20 pounds lighter than where I was a year ago. I don’t really care about the number, but what I DO care about is knowing I can physically conquer anything I put my mind to. From sheer determination, people. I. AM. NOT. ATHLETIC. Never have been, never will be. This is the first time in my life I have ever conveyed myself this far at this speed for this long. And I am proud of it. RAWR.
22) Credit score 650+: Remember way back when I was shocked to be at a 600? Don’t judge me. But I’ve been working and watching and waiting and now I’m here! This is not an easy journey, but instead of making excuses I make things happen. Bills get paid, luxuries get tossed. I paint my own nails, I went back to my natural hair color, and I live the large majority of my life in a small geographical area conserving gas and energy and resources. My world had to get smaller in order for me to get a better grasp on it, and I’m getting there!
23) 5K with a friend: Oh, this was an awesome day! I am soooo proud of my friend Heather. It was on my list and I was determined to do a 5K with a friend, and she was really determined to do her first one. And we did it in FLIPPING JULY. Yep, probably over 100 degrees. And there were INFLATABLES. And you know what? She did every single one of them. She didn’t give up, and the one time she wanted to all I had to do was stick with her and she made it. In her defense, some of those things were not made for short people. lol
24) Buy a new comforter: I dunno why this was such a sticking point for me, but it was. I started buying things as I found them on sale for the new house before I even moved in. And one night I was perusing the sales rack and crooned about the cool gray and purple combo that was in my price point. And he says to me: “Ugh, is EVERYTHING in your house going to be purple?” EXCUSE ME? Is this your house? Is this your money? And OMG I wanted something that I picked out, that I liked, that I spent whatever I wanted on without anyone constantly questioning my wants and needs especially when it was my money and… YES. MY ROOM IS PURPLE. I LIKE THAT COLOR. GRR.
25) Save $250 with coupons: HAHA oh I am kinda proud of this one. I used to love watching Extreme Couponing on TLC, so this was one of my goals. I figured it would take me all year but I was doing really good with it and then this happened… So I went to the Dillards store and looked at their furniture just on a whim. It’s overpriced expensive stuff. And there was an 85-year-old sales guy (I kid you not, his name was WOODY!) who oh-so-kindly pointed me in the direction of the sales items. And then discreetly told me there was an extra 40% off sale starting the next day. So yeah… I got 2 Italian leather pieces of furniture in my living room for less than $1000. I’m pretty proud of that! So when you come to my house and see nice stuff, don’t judge me because 99% of it was on sale or clearance or I COUPONED THE HECK OUT OF IT. Because I’m awesome like that. lol
26) Buy a house: I think this is pretty momentous. There was a time in my life when given the choice between keeping my credit clean or my husband’s, I always kept his squeaky clean and let mine take the hit. I built back from that, saddled with student loan debt, working my butt off as a single mom, and bought a house. No cosigner, no crazy interest, no winking at the mortgage loan officer (who never met me so has no idea how wildly attractive I am- HA!)… I worked for it. I earned it. End of story. Woohoo!
27) Go one week without eating out: It’s just so easy when you’re eating for one to grab something cheap and move on with your day. Especially on lunch breaks. But the week after I bought a house I went through a little bit of shock (OMG MY HOUSE PAYMENT IS A BAZILLION DOLLARS A MONTH UNTIL I’M DEAD) and figured this was a good time to practice some frugality and time management. Cross this off my list, let’s go to Chipotle please. lol
28) Have prayer in my home: Ooh this was such a sweet one! After I got my house semi-situated and painted the inside, I was ready for my first group of guests. So I invited some girl friends over for a sweet time of prayer and fellowship and snacks, and it was awesome. I love you ladies so much! ❤
29) Go 30 days without soda: This isn’t as hard as I make it sound, but I had gotten in the bad habit of drinking them when I ate out, so that stuff had to go. When I ate at home for a week, it made sense to go ahead and tackle this while I was at it. Surprisingly not that bad!
30) Complete the 21 Day Fix: This is just a 3 week workout/diet program that I love. It got me started on my fitness journey a little over a year prior, and it’s just committing to making your health a habit. As I started a new life and new routines in my new house, I felt it was important to stick this one in there… and I’m so glad I did!
Now I’m in such a different place than I was. I have a home- not just a place I sleep, but a place that is MINE for the foreseeable future. I choose to be stable, and I choose to make this place a home full of love, and prayer, and focus. When people come in the front door, I want them to know that there is peace here. Not because I have it all together, but because I choose to have hope in the midst of uncertainty. This is me. On my own, without someone telling me who I am or what choices to make. And I like it. I like me!