Photo by Samantha McGranahan

December 2020

I’m not here for you. I’m here for me. I’m going to be serving up what the effervescent Jonathon Van Ness from Queer Eye would say is some “Realness.” Real experience, real feelings, real pain, real joy, real fun, real food, real struggles, real relationships, real trauma, real healing, all shared here. I’m a 49 year old, married, heterosexual, middle class Caucasian, female.  I am a beautiful woman inside and out and also deeply flawed. I am a career Licensed Clinical Social Worker who both loves her work and has been to the rock bottom of burnout and back (more than once). I am a workaholic. I have a loving and super supportive (and handsome!) spouse. I am a pandemic era grieving small business owner who had to close the adult day program that I built from the ground up thanks to sustaining a concussion that leveled me and then being hit by Covid-19 just as I was battling my way back. I am a solid 5 on the ACEs scale with 15 years of therapy to prove it.

I grew up American Baptist in a small conservative Midwestern town. I shared a lot of those small town values but I did not share many of those conservative views. I burned out on organized religion but not on God. I have been overweight since childhood but was not nearly as overweight as people made me think I was during my teen and college years. (Fuck you teachers, society, family, for jacking up my sense of self and worth that way.) I was a yo-yo dieter and compulsive eater for years. I have hair that has turned crazy curly from hormones in the past few years. Bodies are crazy!

Currently I am living with post concussion syndrome resulting from a vehicle accident in January 2019. I am a wife, daughter, sister, niece, aunt and the cousin of some pretty awesome folks all over this country. I have amazing in-laws who treat me like their own daughter and would do (and have done) anything for me. No kids, two cats, love to cook, am learning to meditate, doing more art, adjusting to life with an invisible disability, and ever so grateful to have many intelligent, loyal, caring, smart-ass and always there for us friends in our lives.

I am here to write my own story. I am here to document my own journey. I am here to speak my truths in hopes that speaking mine will help you to speak yours. I am here to balance what is in my head with the realities of the world. I am here to be creative, to explore, to grow, to leave something behind, to have something to reflect on if my memory goes, to share funny stories and recipes, to just be me. There will be tears, there will be ugly. There will be recipes. There will be stories. There will be pee your pants, tears rolling down our faces laughter and there will be, oh yes, there will be cursing.

So read me. Don’t read me. Follow me. Don’t follow me. Take what helps you, leave what doesn’t. Don’t judge what you don’t understand. Dialogue where there is room for growth. Take your trolling comments elsewhere. My writing is not meant to blame or judge. I trust and believe that the majority of people do the best they can and mean well. Intentions however, do not change outcomes and my story is mine to tell. Some of what I write and share will be uncomfortable for some people, including me.

So, I am not here for you. I am here for me. I do hope though, that by being here for me, I can help you to be here for you too. Thanks for showing up. Thanks for reading. Now buckle up buttercup, and let’s get started!