Birthday, Change, Exercise, Fear, forgiveness, Grateful, gratitude, Happiness, Journey to happiness, joy, LIFE IS GOOD, Loss, Mindfulness, New Beginnings, obsession, Pain, Sadness, Uncategorized, What If's


I really needed to clear my mind. I woke up super early from pain so sat outside and watched the sunrise. I decided even though I cannot go for an actual hike or long walk (damn pinched nerve) I could go to one of my favorite places and walk to the bench. I love how this tiny little walk gives so much beauty. I took a PB&J and sat and just enjoyed. As I was going back to my car I spied a deer looking at me❤️

I am learning to listen to my body to not get caught up in what I used to do. A tiny gentle walk is beneficial in clearing my mind, loosening up my muscles that hurt so bad I can barely move. While it makes other areas hurt a bit more it is needed.

My body is at this crossroad, an odd difficult balancing act that is constantly changing. What helps one area hurts another. What is the norm to try to heal one area is actually NOT good for another. It is not as simple as just stretching or walking or exercises.

I love my doctors as they have not given up on me, they listen, suggest, scratch their heads in confusion and look up ways to help me. They let me cry in frustration and pain. They do not minimize or make my issue seem minimal.

I learned a lot from the first 11 months and although I lost 120 pounds and cured my diabetes, high cholesterol, high blood pressure and a host of other issues, I also lost sight of why I was doing it. It was never about massive weight loss but rather about taking back my life. Losing weight was part of it but mostly I just wanted to eliminate the amount of meds and to lose the emotional baggage that I have carried for 35 plus years.

I quickly lost sight of that and became obsessed with losing the weight, how many miles a day I could hike and how fast I could do it in and the next day repeating it and trying to beat what I did the day before. I was talking to my friend about it and she said she and others worried about my obsession. It was unhealthy. I can remember getting to my car and being in so much pain I could barely get in it and then once I would get home I would eat and go for another one. I weighed myself several times a day. Addictive personalities can be so hard to keep in check and mine was out of control. Those walks also helped clear my mind but so does a smaller one. I was not seeing things around me only my fitbit and how many miles and how fast. I have learned to slow down and man there is so much beauty to be seen if you just slow down.

So here I am 80 pounds heavier, more pain than I have ever been in, depressed for so many reasons, many I cannot talk about, frustrated beyond measure and yet… I have so much hope. Tuesday is my 53rd birthday and I am nowhere near where I had envisioned I would be 3 years ago when I started this. This year for my birthday I am gifting myself permission to listen to ME, to use the wisdom I have gained over the last 3 years. To not feel bad about doing it my way. I know what works for me and what will not. Permission to cry, scream, be lazy, be busy, jump for joy…ok that hurts my back but whatevs!!!
I cannot travel much as driving and sitting are brutal pain wise so I have filled my summer with so many dog sitting and house sitting jobs it is crazy. It fills me with joy and fills in some of the emptiness of not having some people in my life. For the first time I went on a trip by myself. It was blissful and amazing and empowering. It was a short drive and the days were spent wandering the beach and trails.
I don’t want to be known as Theresa the rape victim, yes it is a part of me but I have let it be all of me. I feel like I am disrespecting survivors by letting go and I know that does not make sense but it is one of the most difficult things to not feel guilty about letting go of, it feels like pretending it did not happen. I do not want to be Theresa who complains endlessly of her back pain but reality is that is me… maybe I can help someone else or they can help me. I want to be Theresa the lady who moved on, who although she is not pretending those things did not happen, she let it go and finds happy again. I want to be Theresa who does not feel guilty about every little thing she says or does.
Change, Clean_Eating, climbin, Cravings, Exercise, Fear, forgiveness, Grateful, gratitude, Habit, Happiness, Journey to happiness, LIFE IS GOOD, Loss, Mindfulness, New Beginnings, Pain, Sadness, Uncategorized

Baby got Back…or will get Back!

I have had a lot of facebook memories popping up the last few months. Most involve having met my weight loss goal and the back issues I have had the last year or so. I got derailed, stopped blogging and lost sight of things. In my effort to get fit and lose weight I messed up my back and hip. I was walking 10-15 miles every single day for the better part of a year. I pushed myself, lost sight of the joy I had gotten from being out doors and was more obsessed with how fast and how far I could go. Having an addictive personality is a double edged sword.

Thus started my gaining 80 of the 120 I had lost. Losing the joy I had gained by being outdoors. Depression setting back in. Mostly non stop steroid for more than a year. I was lucky enough to find an amazing doctor who tried every single thing he could think of before sending me to another wonderful doctor. After more than a year of steroids and spinal shots they decided to do RFA. Basically they pinpoint which nerves are being pissy and they cauterize them. The hope is they will stop shooting pain signals to my brain. It is likely IF it is successful that I will need it done a time or two more to stop them regenerating. Success if usually 60% relief which 200% better than what I am having.

This is whole new path for me. The pain is vastly different in the last week. My butt cheek on the good side goes numb when I stand or walk. The good sides lower leg hurts and feels on fire. They did both sides but I still am a bit shocked at how the good side is the problem child right now. I have done a ton of research and the back feeling sunburned is normal and lasts a couple of weeks. I assume the butt and leg issue on the good side is just the pissing off of nerves that were only slightly mad. It is a rather interesting procedure but invasive so causes a lot of angry nerves! On the plus side the bad side is still somewhat numbed from the steroids etc so I am not feeling it on both sides….yet! It is a new journey, I have to strengthen my core… a core I do not have due to multiple surgeries. It weakens your back so it is essential to get a core and strengthen my back muscles or this has been for not.


Going forward is going to be about taking it slow and easy but consistently working on it. I am focusing on my eating again, doing small walks and exercises the therapist has given me. Today I decided to drive to get some organic veggies. I love wandering through looking at the different types of veggies and fruits they offer. They had these amazing beautiful flowers. I am forcing myself to enjoy the everyday beauty. Until I can get back to my hiking and the views it gives I have to find new kinds of pretty.

Yesterday on the way home from work I drove up to one of my favorite spots in the city. Mt. Tabor was so important to me when I was first walking and losing. It is this gorgeous oasis in the middle of our city. Yesterday I walked around the reservoir. Such a tiny little walk but was gorgeous and so quiet and felt oh so good! There was a British gent there who was reading, having tea and just chilling with his pup.

So here I am on a new venture with the same outcome hopes but a very different path. I started my journey on 7-20-2015. On 2-09-2018 I took a different fork in the path. Along with 2 friends we have decided to weigh every Friday at work, I will also measure and take a picture every other week. Being honest and sharing was so helpful to me last time I am going to do it again. So stats for the last 3 week are as follows…drum roll please….


  • Weight 265
  • Neck 15 1/2
  • Arm  L 15 1/2  R 15 1/2
  • Chest 51 1/2
  • Under bra 42
  • Waist 50
  • Hip 51 1/2
  • Thigh L 23  R 22 1/2
  • Calf L 14 1/2  R 14 3/4


  • Weight 259


  • Weight 257.5
  • Neck 15
  • Arm  L 15  R 15
  • Chest 51 1/2
  • Under bra 42
  • Waist 48 3/4
  • Hip 51
  • Thigh L 22 1/2  R 22 1/2
  • Calf L 14 1/2  R 14 3/4

I took a lot of pictures through the first year I lost all the weight. It is so telling way more than the scale. These are 2 weeks apart and you can see how cutting the carbs and eating more, drinking more water makes a difference in the bloat.


Here are some pictures from the first year. I like to keep it handy, it reminds me where I was, where I got and how I can get back there again. It was never really about the loss of pounds on the scale although I did become obsessed with it. It is about feeling good in my skin, being as healthy as I can be and being able to be active. 170109


  • Weight 253

So here I am back at square one but I have high hopes… hopes my back issues will get better, hopes my depression will ease, hopes I can hike again, hopes that even though I will stumble I will remember to always get back up


Clean_Eating, Crafts, Exercise, Fear, forgiveness, Grateful, gratitude, Habit, Happiness, Journal, Journey to happiness, joy, kindness, LIFE IS GOOD, Loss, Mindfulness, New Beginnings, Sadness, Uncategorized

Unhurried Adventures for 2018

2017 was not the best year. It was full of sadness, loss, pain, the unknown sprinkled with a bit of joy. It was a year where my body betrayed me after all the punishing hiking I did to it the year prior. A year of gaining back most of the weight I worked so hard to lose. A year of losing a dear friend who walked the same path to get our health back only to lose her life to cancer. A year of not being in the lives of some of the most important people to me. A year of me slowly sliding back to the Theresa I was prior to July 2015 when I decided to try and take my life back or rather find the life I know I deserve and never allowed.

But 2017 was also a learning year and I have high hopes for 2018. I spent most of 2017 on steroids and that is toxic and brutal to your system. I cannot blame all of my weight gain on them but that is a huge part of it. The gain, bloat and topped off with manic highs and lows due to it were brutal. I love my doctor, he is so genuinely interested in figuring out a solution to my back and hip issues. He has never given up and honors my wish to not be put on pain meds for the pain. I am feeling very optimistic that we finally hit the spot!! The last shot was in a cyst they found on my spine and although I am not close to being pain free, I am also not in that constant never ending cannot get it out of your mind pain level!

I decided 2018 is going to be my year to slow down and refocus my goals. I have always been in a hurry. A hurry to get to the store, to work, to listen to others, to eat, to walk, you name it and I will hurry through it. One upside to hurting myself was being forced to slow down on my walks. It is amazing what you miss when all you are focused on is going fast and getting to the goal. I found this awesome book so treated myself to it. It basically is about slowing down and taking your time. It is full of the most amazing things to do. The writing is beautiful and their FB page has all these wonderful memes to share and have others comment on. I am really looking forward to making my FB page more toward what I had intended it to be. One of the chapters has these wonderful cards that you pop out of the book and fill out. I love their idea of putting them in a jar and pulling them out when you need a reminder of how beautiful life can be.

I am excited to see what 2018 brings. I cannot wait to share more chapters of this book because it is so wonderful. If you are interested in it I would suggest purchasing through Amazon, it is on sale as we speak. One of the quotes in the book was this…. and let me tell you it hit hard for me this year. I lost one beautiful friend and I have another beautiful friend fighting for her life. My friends lost their loved ones… we get busy, we take for granted they will always be there. The first chapter of this book is from the perspective of the author and her friend who nearly died… That friend taught her to slow down, take time out of your day. Make your life and time a priority sometimes. Even a 10 minute meet up for a quick coffee could make all the difference in the world.

I shouldn’t have to wait for my friend to get sick for us to share wonderful moments together

Here is to an amazing and unhurried 2018 my friends~

Birthday, Change, Clean_Eating, Fear, forgiveness, Grateful, gratitude, Habit, Happiness, Journey to happiness, joy, kindness, LIFE IS GOOD, Loss, Mindfulness, New Beginnings, Pain, Sadness, Uncategorized, What If's

Happy Birthday to Me

I have always thought families who go to exotic vacation places or Disneyland had all the luck…that was until last year. My daughter and I took a 10 day trip to the coast and mountains and it was the best time I have ever had. I wish I had appreciated the family vacations we had when I was young. We may not have gotten to go to an over crowded Disney or beach but we had fun. We stepped out of our comfort zone and made memories that will never leave me. I am not a fan of water and even less a fan if there is a snake in it but we swam in the purest clearest water right after seeing a snake.

We drove in the mountains, drove to the very top of one of them on a road that was very narrow… another thing I am petrified of is heights! We rode the tram to the top of the mountain and we sat on the edge of the cliffs and looked at the ocean. We sailed the ocean blue, we met a wonderful woman and Kayla introduced me to her friends who in turn introduced us to a wonderful man that had a yacht that we hung out on another thing I am not comfortable on. I got to meet the man and woman who treated my daughter like their own. I saved my daughter from the clutches of Sasquatch and the virgin sacrificial alter. We collected so many sand dollars we could barely carry them. We saw a herd of Elk on the beach and laughed like never before.

I got to test my ability to stay true to my new healthy lifestyle and did a pretty good job of it. When we did have pizza it was fresh and made with butternut squash and fresh made cheese etc.

Life got in the way and we were not able to do it this year. Money, a messed up back and hip that do not allow me to travel and just life in general. But you know what….next year we will enjoy it even more since we have to wait for it.

I love the city I live in, although the biggest in Oregon it seems small. It is quirky and full of amazing kind people….and full of some really horrible people. The last few weeks have been so difficult for the community. We have had so many murders and hate crimes, the most recent were two men who died and another young man who barely survived. 3 heroes who stood up against evil and wrong and did not waiver from their beliefs. They stood up for 2 innocent 16 year old girls who were being verbally assaulted by an aggressive and dangerous white supremacist/terrorist. A man who openly calls for the murder of police and anyone he deems not good enough to be in this world.

I guess for me that is my final line in the sand…. I have drawn many since #45 took office but this…this is different. I can no longer tolerate people I know that support him or call for hate or intolerance against Muslims or anyone else. I stand up when I see things, I have learned to be a bit more careful in how I address it but I will not be silenced I will not let those men have died or been injured have it be in vain. The mother of the young man murdered came to town for a memorial and she was captured lovingly holding the face of a Muslim woman with her hands and a smile. That is inspiration and I am going to try my best to be that kind of human.

My friends from work got me beautiful flowers from one of their gardens, my buddy bought me these awesome measuring cups I had been admiring and held them for me until my birthday! I do not need expensive bouquets or gifts. I decided to give myself several birthday gifts this year. I love coffee and hate spending what it costs at Starbucks. I have tried in vain to make good coffee to no avail. BUT I heard great things about the Chemex carafe and treated myself. My first cup was a success!! My friend Pam made me promise to take my birthday balloon with me if I did anything over the weekend and take pictures! We went to 3 different creeks, a farmers market, saw an abandoned church and hung out on my deck.

It has been a tough year for me health and emotional wise. My best birthday gift to myself this year will be to spend less time on social media, it is toxic. To work on getting healthy both physically and mentally and not let other opinions of how I do it affect me. It is my journey and mine alone. I will keep those who support me in my life and likely say goodbye to a few who just have vastly different ideas of what is right and wrong.

I will try to be less angry and judgmental. I will stand up for what is right and just. I will not sacrifice my happiness by staying silent any longer. I will try very very hard to see the other side of the picture, to rationally look at it before rushing to judgement and I will try to not let guilt rule how I choose.

Allow yourself to be a beginner.  No one starts off being wise.  Do the best you can until you know better.  Once you know better, do better.

**Marc and Angel Hack Life

Change, Clean_Eating, Fear, forgiveness, Grateful, gratitude, Habit, Happiness, Journey to happiness, joy, kindness, LIFE IS GOOD, Loss, Mindfulness, New Beginnings, Sadness, Shakeology, Uncategorized

Forgiveness & Breaking up with Starbucks (day 4 of 30)

I am a notorious grudge holder and beater upper of myself. For as long as I can remember I have been that person who never forgets and rarely if ever forgives. Of course little offenses I can let go of but if in my mind it is heinous I will never ever let go. It is a huge flaw of mine. Although I know it can be painful for those on the receiving end of my anger it is probably more damaging to me. It eats me up inside… I know in my head that forgiving someone does not mean what they did is ok but for your own well being you have to let it go or it will destroy you… I know that in my head but my heart just struggles with it. I draw a line and I think perhaps I think they will think they can cross that line if I say I forgive them… I know you can forgive in your heart, you never need say a word to the offender but if you do not let it go and move on it will destroy you and those around you.

I am also riddled with guilt for past things. Things that I have either been forgiven for or have been told there was no need to think I need forgiveness as they never viewed it as being something that bad. I hate people being angry at me or hurting, I will to my own detriment smooth things over so they are not hurting. Again it is a flaw… it is not good for me or them. My mom and I were having a conversation the other day and she asked if I saw her comment on my blog. In it she said I did not need forgiveness and even if I did I had been long ago forgiven. I feel such guilt for so many things, it eats me up inside.

So on my way into work I was thinking how she tells me over and over I have no need to feel guilt, but in our conversation, and many other conversations we have had, she tells me how much guilt she feels for having been a screamer when we were young. Honestly I do not recall it, I think she had a stern voice, she definitely did the spanking or grounding if it was needed. My dad never ever spanked us, he rarely ever raised his voice and he made my mom do all the punishment. That does not make him a bad father or husband but it really put my mom in a bad spot. Instead of standing with her he was standing behind her. So mom…. even though you do not need forgiveness and even if you did I has long ago been forgiven I forgive you for what ever perception you have of being a screamer. Let’s pinky swear to try and let it go. We did the best we could and we both did an ok job!

So you ask what the heck does Starbucks and forgiveness have to do with anything…. I just decided that I am going to try my best to break up with Starbucks… it is expensive, I use too much cream, I have a coffee maker and can make my own. BUT they are so sweet to me… I know it is their job and damn it works really good. They know my name, they see me in the mall and stop to chat with me, they engage me in conversation and all for the cheap cheap price of $4.05! My friend watched a special on how tech companies are hacking our brains…. and damned if it is not true! STARBUCKS and their barista’s are doing the same thing GIVE ME BACK MY BRAIN!!! Ok so maybe that is a stretch but it is so ingrained in me that even when I have no intention of getting one I find myself driving right to one. He equates it to a slot machine… It really is an incredible article, here is the link if your interested. STOP HACKING MY BRAIN

“…every time I check my phone, I’m playing the slot machine to see, ‘What did I get?’ This is one way to hijack people’s minds and create a habit, to form a habit.”

So my goal is to try to do a week without buying a coffee or tea. I am also going to start doing my smoothies again. I think I use the excuse I do not have Shakeology anymore and so I just avoid it but I am slipping back into so many bad habits. I am bloated and miserable. When I first started this 2 years ago I went for 6 months with no coffee. I know I can do it, it is rewiring my brain and creating new habits again. It’s been wonderful Starbucks but our time has to end, you are not good for me, you are an expensive habit with no reward… parting is such sweet sorrow…


I am thankful for clarity even though at times it is horribly painful to realize you know what needs to be done and you just cannot get it done… mental blocks suck! So here is to a week with no buying coffee, if I want it I have to make it, to a week of at least one smoothie a day. It is such a great way to get my veggies in. I am tired of being tired and bloated and feeling like crud. I am likely going to have issues with my back for life so I have to get this weight back off, focus on healthy eating that will help with swelling etc. I need to get to where I am not in so much pain that I cannot get home to see my sweet little grandbaby. It is killing me to not get to know him. So there ya go!

What your daily struggles are teaching you.

Challenges are what make life interesting; working to overcome them is what gives life meaning.

Failure and struggles keep you humble, success and achievement keep you glowing, but only faith and determination keeps you going.  So stay focused, and celebrate your efforts too, not just your outcomes.

Remember that the opposite of failing is not succeeding; the opposite of failing is trying.  Your daily efforts are what make it all possible.  Appreciate what they teach you, even when they don’t lead you to an ideal outcome.


Change, Exercise, Fear, Happiness, Journey to happiness, joy, kindness, LIFE IS GOOD, Loss, Mindfulness, New Beginnings, Pain, Sadness, Uncategorized

Be a Chive & Never Give Up (day 3 of 30)

I am cheating today and re-using a blog I did a year ago today. The sentiment is much the same so will just elaborate on it a bit.

The original intent of this blog was to be honest about my struggles, victories and everything in between in my effort to heal and find myself. Somewhere along the lines (actually from almost the start) I put all this pressure to be positive and only post positive upbeat things. But my reality is I am far from Ms. Positive, I struggle with being happy, I put on a fairly good front but it is just that. I need to be more honest about what I am feeling and going through. I am always so worried that I will hurt someone or disappoint and only end up hurting and disappointing me.

Not sure why I am in a funk but I am. I am eating what I should not eat, I am not sleeping, not exercising, not doing much of anything but crying and working. It will pass it always does.

I have been doing a lot of thinking about how I have not been a good friend to those I love. They have suffered losses and setbacks and just life in general and I have been stuck in this … whatever THIS is. I need to work on being the friend I know I can be and should be. Hug your loved ones and friends, tell them they matter… I miss my babies and grandbaby so much, I hate that my body is not allowing me to go to Burns.

I am tired and part of why I cannot sleep is I just cannot shut my brain off.. It just rambles on and on and on. I just want one night of my mind being shut off. I try yoga but between my tailbone I broke, my hip and my back sitting does not work and then….there is the not being able to focus because my brain won’t shut down. Nothing spectacular to blog about. I am sad, it will pass… I took a picture of this one lone little chive. I bought these planters 2 years ago and after the first season never bothered with them but every year in spite of the snow, rain, freezing ice, this one lone little chive pops back up…. I guess in a way I am like that little chive.


Every single experience that led you to today.

Life isn’t about a single moment of great triumph and attainment.  It’s about the trials and errors that get you there – the blood, sweat, and tears – the small, inconsequential things you do every day.  It all matters in the end – every step, every regret, every decision, and every affliction.

The seemingly useless happenings add up to something.  The minimum wage job you had in high school.  The evenings you spent socializing with coworkers you never see anymore.  The hours you spent writing thoughts on a personal blog that no one reads.  Contemplations about elaborate future plans that never came to be.  All those lonely nights spent reading novels and news columns and comics strips and fashion magazines and questioning your own principles on life and sex and religion and whether or not you’re good enough just the way you are.

All of this has strengthened you.  All of this has led you to every success you’ve ever had.  All of this has made you who you are today.

From Marc and Angel Hack Life

LIFE IS GOOD, Loss, Mindfulness, New Beginnings, rape, Safety Pin, Trump, Uncategorized, What If's


I have never felt so unloved, alone and abandoned as I do right now. I am tired of being told to get over it and to put my big girl pants on. I am tired of having to try to explain why this election is so different. I am tired of wanting to go back to that person I was who hid in my mind. This is my story and I am but a blip in the world of these stories. I am not going to shut up and I am not going to stop talking about it. This election has empowered people to think they can be openly cruel to anyone deemed inferior and some people I know and care about will never get that… I cannot keep trying to help them understand I just no longer have that energy. So remember my story when you defend those people. Pray that your daughter or son never suffers this indignity. If you have a friend of color or a different religion or is gay, reach out to them, hug them and do not stop because this pain and fear will not end anytime soon. If you are tired of me talking about it feel free to move on it will not hurt my feelings. I am not going to be quiet anymore out of fear or reprisal of losing someone. For the first time in my life I am ashamed to be a white entitled woman. 
I was 14 when I was raped, as I fought him in the back of his car screaming and crying I looked up and saw 2 men looking in. My heart was so relieved…and then they took pictures and laughed and a part of me died that night. I never told a soul what happened until 38 years later. In order to survive my shame I looked at the barrel of a gun or the razor at my wrists… the only thing that saved me was my feeling that I was such a loser that I would not even be successful at killing myself.
Instead of suicide I turned to drugs and alcohol. I broke my parents hearts by no longer talking to them, I ended up dropping out of school and stole so I could keep my “boyfriend” high or drunk so he would talk to me or love me. My parents eventually made me a ward of the court and that saved my life. I decided when I was sent away that I would make myself fat so no man would ever hurt me again.
I ended up pregnant and married at barely 17. It was not a good marriage. I loved my boy but it was not fair to him I was so damaged I was not the mom he deserved those first few years. I had a daughter with this man as well, spent 14 years married. One day he went to the store and never came back. Neither of us was ready for that marriage. We were better parents separately than together.
I spent the next 3 years working multi jobs and spending my time with my amazing children. They were my life line. I ended up marrying the most narcissistic man. In the year we dated he left me at least 6 times and I welcomed him back each time. He made it clear to me I was lucky he was with me, he would call me a crack whore, fat and ugly. My self esteem was so non existent I took him at his word. He cheated and mentally and verbally abused me to the point of my fighting the urge to cross the yellow line on the freeways. When I received the call from a friend that my son was critically injured and they did not think he would live he offered no support. My daughter and I drove 4 hours at midnight to hopefully get to him in time. He did not offer to drive me regardless of the fact I was in shock.. I spent 6 weeks at my sons bedside while he was in the CCU, he came once and only because he wanted to, as he put it, fuck me. Thank God for my daughter who held me up… Eventually he left….
14 years later I am still single, still have never had an orgasm and likely never will. The damage done to my insides from my rape and the mental flashbacks to that night anytime a man touches me just does not allow for it. I have been celibate the last 14 years I am not sure I can ever date again. I thought I could I really really thought I was at a spot where maybe I could but that has been taken away again.
I gave up drugs and drinking when I was pregnant and made myself a 300 pound “happy” woman. In my mind that was my safety net. A year ago I was told I was going to be a gramma and my doctors said I was going to die if I did not do something. I lost 110 pounds, the equivalent of that 14 year old girl. I shed that sweet innocent victim and now I had no clue as to who I am.. I decided to blog about my journey and be completely honest. It was painful but helped me be honest. My friend supported me, they held me up when I was down, they commented on my blog or posts. They gave me advice and liked my posts. They comforted me when I was broken… and then… the pussy story came out. In that instant everything came rushing back. All the pain and memories were raw again. I saw friends defending him. I was told by some people that I only have gotten to know on here that women are not raped they can simply say no.. I tried to write about why it is dangerous and painful. I got comments but most not in support.
And then what little support I did receive stopped on 11-8-16. I am talking people who have felt the need to offer up advice, who held me up in my lowest all of the sudden because of a post regarding why people need to understand voting for Trump is telling many people they do not count. Nothing just crickets on my page. Of the 370 people on my page 3 commented on that post. One is a married gay friend with a child… One is a friend who I used to work with. The ones who get it, who are living it or know someone who is are all I have left and that is enough but man it is painful.. For the first time in years I thought of that yellow line.. my children, mom and grandson are what keep me going. I would never kill myself so do not worry.. But I have never felt such loss as I do right now.
I HATE facebook and yet I have a group that supports my weight loss journey that I cannot bare to leave… and I have another group that truly hurts as much as I do. I feel empowered, I am still struggling and I know that life is never going to be the same. I held my friends who were not of the Trump norm, I still hold them and cry with them and likely that will not stop anytime soon. I was walking through the mall on my lunch and there was a homeless girl on a bench sobbing into her hands, a boy was next to her ignoring her. She said something about she is my mom how could she… and I did not hear the rest.
People who did not blatantly ignore her looked at her with disgust. My friend and I walked past and I started crying it broke my heart she is someones daughter. I had to go back. I knelt in front of her and touched her leg, she looked up scared. I took her hand and said I do not know what is hurting her but that my heart hurts for her. That as a mother it breaks my heart to see her so sad. She mouthed thank you but looked back down. I took her beautiful dirty tear stained face in my hands and looked her in her eyes and said I love you, I am so sorry you are hurting but you matter. She asked if she could hug me and we held each other. She gave me such a gift in that moment.
So to those who are walking this path with me thank you for giving me a lifeline because I need it… we all need it. I do not know all of you but I love each of you, you are my new family and friends and we are going to make a difference and I am not going to shut up anymore I am not going to let someone shame me and tell me I asked for rape as a 14 year old virgin.
To my friends who are trying to understand and maybe just do not know how to say it or how to respond thank you… 
21 Day Fix, Beach Body, Change, Fear, gratitude, Habit, Happiness, Journey to happiness, joy, kindness, Loss, Mindfulness, New Beginnings, Uncategorized


Change has never been my thing…it scares me I mean REALLY scares me. Stepping outside my comfort zone is terrifying. I remember when I decided to move to Gresham how utterly lost and frightened I felt. My son was 18 but still in high school, he had 6 months to graduation and I had initially decided to stay until he graduated but things happen and I needed to leave. Having to make the choice to leave him behind was heart breaking and I to this day wonder if I had stayed if things would have turned out differently for him. I also had to leave my 14 year old daughter behind for a month while things got settled up here.

I remember the tears saying goodbye to my children, having to say goodbye to my dog and my friends. I had lived in Burns my entire life. I cried telling my mom goodbye, I stopped by Sentry Market to say goodbye to my dad..he was having his morning coffee and donut and we both cried. My entire adult life was packed into my car… I left so much behind emotionally and physically. I sobbed the entire drive to Gresham. I was never so alone or frightened in my life and although I think the decision to leave hurt some I needed to do it. That is the first time I truly stepped outside my comfort zone and made a change.

The move ultimately has been the best thing for me but the twists and turns it has taken have forever altered my life, some have been heart breaking and some wonderful. Although I left behind friends I have known my entire life I have made some of the most amazing friends since moving up here. I love it here.

Since July 2015 my life line and comfort zone has been 21 Day Fix. It saved my life and a few days ago I made a really difficult decision to walk away from it. A large part is due to finances, part because I am so lost and need to focus on finding me. I cannot lie I am terrified… although I will the eating plan I am losing a good chunk of life line and that worries me. As I said I love living here but the down side is it is expensive, it is 6 hours from my children and my grandchild. I do not get to see them like I would want to. But this is where I belong I can never move back to Burns nor do I want to. For me and so many others I know it is toxic.

I am scared…I am tired, I am sad, I am happy, I am so many many things but the biggest thing I am is blessed. Since my post “My Story” my friends have reached out and they touch me in so many ways. I am going to be ok I know that I am going to make that happen. It will be a process and likely this process of healing and finding me and my happy will be a lifetime journey. I find this blog so helpful and yet I do not use it as much as I would like. I will also be cancelling my internet…that will make blogging difficult at best. Perhaps that is for the best, perhaps it will be detrimental..time will tell.

So here is to my continued journey.


Change, Fear, gratitude, Happiness, Journey to happiness, joy, Loss, New Beginnings, rape, Uncategorized, What If's

My Story

I have spent the last 2 years writing this particular post. I start then stop then start and then copy and paste and share what I think won’t make people too uncomfortable. If you are uncomfortable by what I write that is on you not me, you can choose to simply move on… I know nothing I say will change some people’s ideas and that is not the intent. The intent is to no longer hide behind shame that is not mine to bare, to perhaps help someone else who is struggling with this self-imposed shame.  A wise friend told me she thinks I am finally ready to work on moving on. That truly was my intent all along when starting this journey. Let me make it clear the only persons who shoulder the guilt are those 3 men. THEY alone are the guilty parties.

The flurry of comments surrounding Trump and his behaviors have set forth emotions I have hidden for years and some emotions I did not even know I felt. It brought forth memories I had buried deep. I am tired, I am heart broken, I am damaged and I want to heal…some scars will never disappear no matter what I do. I guess I just want to stop hiding and I want others to understand how damaging words and actions can be. How far reaching they are, that sometimes no amount of therapy or talking will erase that damage. I realize for the first time how truly deeply damaged I am and it has broken my soul. I want to have the day get here when I no longer feel I have to whisper the word rape. I do not want to have it define my entire being but reality is it is a huge part of me.

I have never been comfortable in my skin. At a very young age I had large breasts and an hour glass figure, well before many other girls. I did not understand why men looked at me or made comments. I spent most of my youth being stared at or having comments made. I was nicknamed jugs, tits, bongos, I was told to not run to hard or I would get a black eye, to not sit down to hard I would get a bloody nose. I would walk through a parking lot and have comments yelled at me, it was not flattering it was uncomfortable. It was never that someone considered me pretty all they saw were giant boobs and hips. Sadly my precious daughter experienced the same issues when we moved to the city.

I went for a ride that fateful day with someone who I trusted. I did not truly know them but they were related to another person I knew very well, they were simply in town visiting. He had been introduced to two local guys and they spent time together. They told him a place he could take me…they showed up shortly after and as I begged and pleaded and cried and turned away from my attacker I was relieved when I saw 2 people outside the car. I thought they would save me instead they stared in the windows laughing and smiling. One even took a picture. A part of me died a little in that moment and my trust of men completely dissolved.

I want people to understand that actions and words hurt. That saying it is not big deal to be spoken to in a demeaning fashion is inexcusable, that allowing that behavior plays a part in why judges give out slaps on the wrists of those abusers. Comparing real actions to those of a novel or movie is ridiculous at best. That one act and words said to me over the years took something from me I will never get back. They defined my interactions with men going forward. It formed who I chose to have relationships with and that was men who I knew were not good for me because in the deep depths of my mind I thought I did not deserve someone who would love me.

The scar tissue damage left me feeling like a virgin every single time I have sex, I am incapable of orgasms, I am incapable of relaxing and enjoying because the pain is always there. I am left fighting to not scream or throw up when being touched. I am left with so much baggage that I cannot allow myself to get in a relationship because it would be unfair to my prospective partner. How do you explain why you cringe or cry when they touch you? Those men took an innocent virgin girl and spun a tale that left my reputation in tatters. I have been with 4 men in my life one of which was my attacker and 2 that I was married to. I did not deserve that reputation. I was not “easy” nor did I sleep around. I had high school guys that would lie to their friends that they slept with me. I grew up in a community that can be amazing to its citizens but there is a side to that community that people do not want to see. That side nearly killed me.

That day eventually let me to using drugs and alcohol to ease my pain. It left me off and on for the next 38 years pondering if it was worth sticking around. It left me for years looking at a bottle of pills, a razor, a gun, or the yellow line on the highway. Thankfully my lack of thinking I could do anything right did not allow me to follow through, I thought I was so worthless that I would not even be able to kill myself. Then I had children and they became my reason to live.

I ended up dropping out of school, I will never forget the day my parents signed the papers for me…my dad had tears in his eyes, their hearts were broken by me that day. I ran away and moved in with a boy whose parents were never there. We drank, we did drugs and he could have cared less about me. In order to touch me he had to be drunk or high and in my desire at the time to be loved I stole so he could be loaded and pay attention to me.

I ended up a ward of the court which is the best gift my parents gave me because it ultimately saved my life. Even though that led me to getting pregnant and marrying a man I met when living with my foster mom that child also helped to save my life. We had so much fun at first, for the first time in a long time I was enjoying life again then I got pregnant and all that shame came flooding back and what joy I had went out the window. My shame at being a pregnant teen was overwhelming (self-imposed).  My sweet precious son paid a price that he did not deserve. I loved him beyond measure but was so incapable of being the kind of mom I should have been to him. Eventually I had two children with this man and my sweet daughter also did not get the life she deserved.

We did not have a good marriage. I was young and had so much baggage it really was not fair to either of us. He tried I did not, I tried he did not, that was the story of our marriage. The lesson I taught my children regarding marriage and relationships was not what it should have been. I spent those years making myself even more overweight thinking that would protect me, when we got divorced I set about keeping anyone at bay.

Then I met and married the single most narcissistic man I have ever met. One who systematically emotionally and verbally destroyed what little bit of love I had for myself. I did not believe I was worthy of love and he drove that point home daily. He cheated and he rubbed it in. He reminded me constantly that I was lucky he was with me, that people would look at us and wonder how I ended up with someone like him (in his mind he thought he was a good thing). I spent several months at the end of that marriage barely able to get out of my bed and to go to work, my depression was back at suicidal levels. In my depressed state I subjected my child to the horror of this man and I will forever live with that guilt.

That marriage ended and I successfully made myself the heaviest I have ever been. I walked slumped over never looking anyone in the eye. Avoidance was my best friend for the next 11 years. Many things led up to me deciding to take control of my life. I was diabetic, on the verge of a stroke or heart attack and found out I was going to be a grandma. Something clicked and I finally decided to do something about my weight. Never did I think it would be as painful a process as it has been. Losing that weight was basically losing that 14 year old girl. I no longer have an identity. I am no longer scared rape victim, I have no idea who I am. I lost that protective layer and now people look at me again and that scares me. I never used to share pictures of myself and now I likely overshare. Not because I am proud of the person I am but because it forces me to go outside my comfort zone. That is part of this healing process, forcing myself to step outside my norm. It is frightening, uncomfortable and unpleasant. It is opening myself up to ridicule and attention that I have spent decades hiding from.

I have spent the last year pretending that my life is finally amazing and the truth is it is not. It is better in some ways but it is frightening in so many more ways. My depression has returned and not talking about it or pretending all is ok makes it worse. 38 years later and I still cannot shed that one act on that one day. I still cannot imagine a day I will be ok being in a relationship, I still think I have no self-worth, I still feel as if I deserve every single bad thing that has happened to me.

That one act on that one day not only messed me up but that trickled down to my innocent children who deserved so much better.  So next time you think words or actions do not have lasting ramifications please think about the overall picture. The next time you think about making an excuse for someone’s horrific words or behaviors remember not everyone has walked in the shoes of an assault victim and will never understand how it feels. Not every assault is physical, nor are some of the worst scars physical ones.

I have been asked why I did not speak up, people condemn the women who are just now coming forward. We have all seen how the victims are made out to be deserving of what they got. Most are women whose attackers are normal everyday people. Can you imagine if your attacker is a billionaire or a famous actor who has unlimited money and lawyers at their disposal who can publicly destroy you….that is why we do not speak up. Being physically brutalized is horrific but being publicly brutalized is even more painful.

Last night I did something I have not done in a very long time. I bought 2 bags of pita chips and I laid down and I ate both bags…. I made some mashed potatoes and smothered it in crappy packaged gravy and I ate myself stupid. I thought I had combated those issues in my life….

The emotions of the last week have snuck up on me and I sunk back into the depressed going to eat myself fat habit again. I will take it day to day and pray I do not sink lower. I am not asking for sympathy, a pat on the back or advice I am asking to be respected for what I feel and to be allowed to speak of it without fear of reprisal. I am hoping one day the past will be just that, that is will stop rearing its ugly head. I will never forget what happened but one day I hope it will stop being center attention.


Fear, gratitude, Happiness, kindness, Loss, Uncategorized

Mental Health Awareness Month

September is Mental Health Awareness Month. I would like to talk about that and I would like to take it one step further and add bullying…
Today as my friend and I went on a walk at work we passed a young girl sitting just off the sidewalk. She was dirty, and she was tweaking and swatting imaginary bugs off her face and arms. She was rocking and trying her best to not flail about… Her little arms and legs were twigs and I wanted to sweep her in my arms so badly but knew that it was not a good thing to do given how bad off she was. My friend and I just looked at each other and fought back tears… we both said at the same time “she is someones daughter”.
Her parents could be terrible people, they could be amazing people who wonder every second of every day where their daughter is. They could have tossed her out in frustration. I do not know what her prior life is but I can guarantee you she is and has been abused on the streets. We spoke of how terrible it was to think of what she has to do to get the drugs. I have never seen anyone that badly strung out. Of course we assume she is on drugs but she could just as easily be mentally ill or both.
Portland has a disgustingly huge homeless mentally ill drug addicted population. We walk past them not looking at them because we feel above them. We walk past them not looking at them because they smell, they make us uncomfortable and we make ourselves feel better by saying it is not our problem or OUR children or loved ones will never do that. We walk past them… we ignore them or say things to them or laugh at them or assault them.
I cannot read an article on James Chasse and not break down in tears. He was a mentally ill local man who was bi polar and his family struggled to help keep him on meds. He was walking down the street in The Pearl and someone decided he looked like he was peeing on the street (I guarantee you any other part of the city but the Pearl and no one would have cared). Reality is he was not peeing he was paranoid and scared and the police started to chase him. First let me preface this with this is NOT a slam of police I appreciate and respect them BUT we do not train them on how to deal with the mentally ill. I also am not going to debate bad cop good cop here. Bottom line is he ran they had no idea he was mentally ill and in the end this poor soul was beaten and slowly died of his injuries. Very few people tried to help him…. He was someones son and his mother died with a broken heart a few short years after his death.
Every single mentally ill person is someones child… someones parent or sibling or friend. There but for the grace of God…. We pretend that it will not touch our lives. I have been on antidepressants most of my life and likely will the rest of my life. We live in a society where it is taboo, the dirty dark family secret if someone is mentally ill or depressed and because of that we do not take care of our mentally ill. They end up on the streets or worse they end up murdered or having committed suicide. Mental illness comes in all shapes and sizes, colors and religions… There are mentally ill people who should be institutionalized and their are those who can mostly function in society if they have the support they need.
Can you imagine living in a world of constant fear, where your only hope in your mind is to flee and end up on the streets and on drugs. I am just as guilty as the next guy for passing judgement at times about the odd person talking to themselves or acting weird. But living in this city and seeing the level of homeless mentally ill has made me see a different side… and today, that beautiful damaged soul sitting on the dirt with her eyes so scared broke my heart and as painful as it was to witness I needed to see it. I needed to be slapped upside my head and I needed to be reminded that my life is damn good and I am damn blessed.
I spent years staring at a gun, holding a blade to my wrist or looking at a bottle of pills. I have friends whose parents, children, siblings or good friends have committed suicide. Is it selfish…maybe the rare occasion is someone trying to get back at someone but mostly it is people who are so deep in the depths of depression it is all they can do to breathe. That the only light at the end of their tunnel is a freight train bearing down on them. Many of them truly believe they are doing their loved ones a favor by ending it. I will never make those who refuse to believe it is anything but selfish change their minds. I pray they never walk in my shoes or anyone else who has struggled with this level of dark and I pray they never get that horrible phone call… If you really want to get a deeper understanding of it there is a documentary called The Bridge. It is heart breaking but eye opening.
Then there is bullying… we are bullying adults raising children to be bullies. The level of mean is so much that it is driving children and adults to kill themselves… Have you ever been on the receiving end of bullying? Have you been blatantly day in and day out ignored or mocked or poked fun of. Have you walked into a room and suddenly you hear crickets because they were talking about you? Have you ever had your child come home in tears because they have no friends and are teased at school. Have you ever been brutalized emotionally or physically, had people look at you and snicker and whisper. Have you been told you should kill yourself, or that you are a loser, you are ugly, you are a whore, you are a fag, you are disgusting. Have you ever done or said those things to someone else. IF you have never been on the receiving end of that you need to thank your lucky stars. If your child has not you better be happy. IF you have never experienced that but do it to someone else then you should go talk to someone whose loved one has killed themselves because of it. Could you live with yourself if you were the straw that broke the camels back? Do not think for one second that you are not capable of breaking someone…
I have been on the receiving end of bullying and so have my children and my sister and too many friends to count. We are a society of cruel people. We mock people on social media, our politicians are bullies, celebrities, media, athletes etc are bullies. I hate this election I HATE what it has done to my friends, society as a whole and it scares me. I do not know what the solution is.. I can make an impassioned plea but it is not going to matter to some people. We live in a world where making ourselves feel better know matter how we do it is all that matters.
I just ask if you are doling out this behavior stop it… stop and consider how you would feel. If you do not like someone that is fine but you have no right to make their life hell… if you know someone who fights mental illness do not hide it in shame. Help them help themselves. If you see someone on the street who looks so lost and vulnerable or even weird…. smile, say hello it costs nothing and means EVERYTHING and that one simple act could save someone life. If could give them hope be it mentally ill people or just the odd or homeless person.