Endings and New Beginnings

–I had written this post before, but it got lost. Here is attempt #2.–

Today is the last day of operation of FxMcRory’s. I am more emotional about it’s closure than I thought I would be.

I worked here many years ago as a food runner during Seattle sports gamedays. Located nearby the stadiums, FxMcRory’s is a popular bar and restaurant with over 40 years of operation. It has a reputation of being the tailgate location before games, especially the Seahawks, where the bar fills up by 9-10am and there are wall-to-wall people.

The years I worked here were very busy and when I was at my most ill. I spent many days struggling to make it through the up to 10-12 hour shifts with few breaks. I was anxious, stressed, and sick most every day I worked. It was some of the roughest years of my life.

But working here and those years in my life were not all bad. Between the stresses of my job and my eating disorder and anxiety, I also entered my recovery. I went from struggling to make it through my days and shifts to thriving and moving forward with the rest of my life.

This place, this bar, is my constant reminder of the struggle of where I started and the joy of where I am going. I look around here at this place and those memories and I am reminded that I have grown so much and I have so much ahead of me. Where I used to barely get by, I now thrive. This was the end of the pain and sadness of my eating disorder and the beginning of my recovery.

As it closes, I too close a chapter in my life. I am transitioning from the beginnings of my recovery into the next stage of my life–going to school again and getting a second Bachelor’s degree. I do not know exactly what is ahead of me, but I am reminded what is behind. I feel grief, relief, sorrow, and triumpth. I know that the past may have been difficult, but my future is here and now and I cannot wait to see what will happen and what I will experience.

A salute to endings and new beginnings! Goodbye FxMcRory’s and hello Washington State University and my future!

Politics: Healthcare

Today is a very difficult day for me.  It is a difficult day for so many people.  We are entering an unknown period of time with a new US president and a GOP controlled congress.  Their goals are not necessarily the goals of the majority of the American people and it is scary.  No one knows what will happen, what the president and congress can or will accomplish, and no one can say that everything will be okay.

And it scares me.

I rely on healthcare and the mandates of the Affordable Care Act.  There are so many people in America who do.  It was a lifesaver covering me because of my mental health pre-existing conditions, erasing lifetime limits, and covering me on my parents health plans until I was 26.  I rely on the mandate that people are required to purchase healthcare to keep costs down for everyone because the more healthy people that purchase healthcare, the cheaper it is for all of us.  These healthy people who use their insurance less, keep costs through paying into the system and not using their health insurance as frequently as others.  When so many healthy people did not buy into this system and instead choose to pay the fine, my premiums and so many other’s rose.

The law is not perfect.  Definitely not.  For instance, with the ACA I qualify for subsidies and plans that would not meet my needs as a person who needs to utilize my plan often.  Therefore, I need to purchase a plan outside of the exchange and usually it means only being able to choose between two companies in the state of Washington.  Neither plan necessarily meets my full needs because I use in-network and out of network care and the deductible for out of network are always ridiculous even on the best plans available.

I am lucky.  I can purchase outside of the exchange.  I have the financial ability to do so when so many do not.  They may have healthcare but these deductibles in the ACA that are too outrageous to make it worthwhile.

The logical thing would be to make the law better or replace it with universal healthcare, which would be a single-payer system.  But the current people in power do not see healthcare as a human right, only a right of the privileged few who can pay.  They will do what they can to destroy what is good about the law, not replace it with something better, and those like me who rely on healthcare will be left wondering what to do next, which is paying for basic needs like housing and gas and our doctors and medication.

And this is what terrifies me.  It is not only that my healthcare is at jeopardy–it is the healthcare of millions.  People’s lives and livelihoods are at stake all in the name of partisan politics and money.  Disproportionately it is the lives and livelihoods of poor and minority households that will be affected by a repeal and already struggle to afford healthcare under the ACA because of huge deductibles and rising premiums.  It is because rich white men in government do not care about people who are not other rich white men and blatantly lie about their true motives to continue to get elected by an electorate that is (sometimes) well-intentioned yet uninformed.

 

7 Goals for 2017 & Update

I cannot believe how quickly 2016 came and went.

There has been so much going on in my life over the past many months since my last entry.  I have tried writing many times, but I have been interrupted or became too busy to finish posts.  While it is not a bad thing to get busy with life, it does make me sad that I have neglected my blog so much recently.

I am going to work in the next couple weeks on making updates on what has been going on in my life since my last entry.  One update in particular is so big that it definitely needs its own blog post.  Keep an eye out for those.

Since it is 2017 and I always like to make goals (whether I achieve them or not) for each new year, here are my 7 goals for 2017:

  1. Write: I always have all of these great ideas in the car, shower, and at work but never can find the time to actually write!  I really want to work on creating more space and time for myself for writing.
  2. Keep working on my issues: I still have things I need to work on, places where I can improve, etc.  I am always a work in progress.
  3. Prepare myself for Fall: There are new beginnings happening in the fall.  I need to prepare myself as much as I can for the changes ahead.
  4. Resources: Ensure I have the resources I need to accomplish what I want to.
  5. Relationships: Continue to invest in the relationships I have and build new ones.
  6. Next step: Keep working towards the next step in my life, whatever that may be–grad school, career, etc.
  7. Stay positive: Re-frame, re-frame, re-frame! #CBT

My Recovery Journey: Four Years Later

Four years ago today I was returning home following my second stay in residential treatment.  Today I am at the ICED conference preparing to network, learn, and figure out a next step in my life as I navigate working as a professional in this field.  It is incredible to look back each and every year and realize the changes that I have made and the hurdles I have overcome.  None of it was easy, some of it was incredibly painful and hard, but it has all been worth it to get to this point.  If I have made it this far in four years, I can only imagine where I will be in four more.

I hope that you, too, celebrate each and every accomplishment.  You are worth it.

6 Goals for 2016

Hello again!  Forgive me for my absence.  The last 8 months or so have been hectic and crazy with a lot of change and transition going on in my life.  Time to get back to some blogging.

It is nearly the end of the year now and that means it is time for me to set some goals for the new year.  It is something I have been doing for many years now and I love doing it.  It keeps me focused on what I want to achieve and the things I am still striving towards.

Since it is about to be 2016, let’s do 6 for ’16!

  1. Write: I am really striving to write more.  I got out of the rhythm of blogging and let other things get in the way of it.  In 2016, I am going to make it a top goal to keep blogging, journaling, and tweeting.
  2. Work through my issues: I have things to work on—everyone does.  As with every year, I really want to keep working as hard as I can to overcome my issues.  I have confidence in myself.  I know I can do this.
  3. Continue and finish re-organizing my space: I finally have some new pieces for my space that I have needed desperately.  Now it is up to me to put it all together.  I really want to accomplish this and make my space even more my own and workable.
  4. Graduate school applications: I am finally going to apply to graduate school in 2016.  It will be a full-year commitment to get everything together to apply.  I have some of it done already, but there is still more to go.  Fingers crossed!
  5. Create a backup plan: If not graduate school, then what?  If I do not get in, what will be my next move?
  6. Keep reaching towards my goals: Sometimes I get really down on myself because I believe that I am not good enough for this or that, but I need to keep in mind that I am.  I need to keep reaching towards the things that I want instead of allowing other things to get in the way.

What are your goals for 2016?

Happy (almost) New Year everyone!

Gratitude: Change/Transition

I am regaining my ground.  I am connecting with others.  I have joined a group.  I have even cut my hair and styled it ever so slightly differently.  It is an all-around change to my life.

I was inspired after my last post at the ocean to begin keeping busier and start changing with the change instead of against it.  Amazing how much better that has worked!  I am actually enjoying some of the change (especially my hair) rather than dreading the lot.

Nothing is perfect, nothing ever is, but it is better.  Things are better.  For that I am grateful.  Grateful to be able to spend time with friends.  Grateful to not be sick.  Grateful that I have such an amazing support system.  Grateful that I am coping okay with these changes and transitioning better than I was.  Grateful that with change I am learning I can do anything and overcome anything.  Grateful that I am in recovery, for which I am always grateful.

Hopefully soon I will write a proper post with an update on what I have been up to.  Until then, remember that change is not the end of the world.  Change is hard and it really sucks sometimes, but it also can be good and you never know what it can bring.  Give change a chance?

Keep up recovery, warriors!