Waiting for the other shoe to drop

Dear Readers,

BabyHaston12weeksIf you are anything like me, you spend a good amount of time worrying despite the fact that as the saying goes, “Worry is interest paid on a debt that never comes due”- I have gotten decidedly better about this but it is still a struggle to not constantly worry. I used to worry that my relationship with my boyfriend (now husband) would all of a sudden fall apart and the “other shoe would drop” and then I would see the “Real him” but guess what? there was no other shoe. We definitely have our problems, but we work very hard to solve them and I don’t worry about “the other shoe” anymore.

This post is about the fact that while I am 14 weeks pregnant and very happy to be so, I am still worried about things that can go wrong. I have seen the picture ^^^ Hi baby! and I definitely feel tired and there are some cravings (peanut butter and a constant need for milk) but other than that, there aren’t yet visible signs of my being with child. Several people I have told that I am pregnant were far more excited than I was and I couldn’t put my finger on why. By the way, I don’t think that there is anything wrong with any level of excitement, as it is MY pregnancy and how I FEEL will be how I FEEL and feelings are not bad or good, they just are.  That took me almost 25 years to learn but it’s a very important thing to remember.

Back to my lack of enthusiasm (which is truly out of character for me) and the abundance of worry… I was troubled by this for a while but realized after a conversation with my Mom that it is a natural part of the process of being pregnant. Can you say emotional? Can you say hormonal? Especially because we were pregnant before and at 5 and 1/2 weeks, March 10, 2015, we had a miscarriage and I lost the baby. I am being very careful to use specifics like. “miscarriage” and “lost the baby” because its really important to use the words that describe what happened. That is as horrible as it sounds and I am having a difficult time typing through the tears because though I am pregnant now, that was a hard loss for us.

I went through the five stages of grief, Denial, Anger, Bargaining, Depression, and finally Acceptance. It looks extremely clinical when you read it in black and white there but I want to tell you it was anything but that, There is no particular order to those stages and you can find yourself in a few at the same time, and its not a predictable schedule. I would go from being totally “okay” to “utter basket case” – I had supportive family of choice members, as well as very close friends who did a great job of listening and taking care to just “be there” which is an underrated skill, believe me.

It has taken me this long to talk about it, but I knew even in the midst of the pain I was feeling both physical and emotional that I WOULD eventually talk about it. The more I discussed it with people, the more I found out how common it is. 7 out of 10 women have had miscarriages and it doesn’t get talked about a lot. I guess because it isn’t the cheeriest topic, but as a speaker and definitely as a woman, I felt like it was something that I SHOULD talk about no matter how difficult.

It was actually my wonderful and supportive husband who first floated the idea by me on a particularly weepy night in May when I told him I was having a really hard time getting past it and he suggested it might be cathartic to give a speech about it. So we did, It was well received and my hope is that if you are reading this and have been through something similar, that you take heart, and find comfort in the fact that there is hope and there is support. If you haven’t had a miscarriage but know someone who has and you think it will help them, please share this with them.  Here is the speech- I am still a little scared to share, but the vulnerability of others is how we progress, right?

I think we could all stand to be a bit more open about the struggles we face in life. Who knows? Your struggle could inspire someone else to keep fighting the good fight.

Think about it……





Love is Hard


Dear Readers, My family of choice is so dear to me, and I would not trade them for anything, especially given my horrible, no good family of origin. As for my family of origin, I will say this for them, they brought me into the world and I thank them for that.

Sometimes I get really mad when I think about how much they weren’t there, didn’t support me, didn’t love me the way I deserve to be loved. Sometimes I hate that I care about people who don’t deserve it.

But then my cheery disposition takes over, and then I am grateful I that I do. It means I am capable of feeling more than they EVER did, which ultimately means I loved them deeper than they will ever love me. I am better off because I learned to love only those who deserve it. 

If you find yourself in a similar situation, Feel what you feel,(the pain, the anger, the sadness) but KNOW this, you are stronger for the choice you made to leave and love yourself.

Think about it…….


Do things before you think you are ready



Dear Readers, today’s post is dedicated to those who are afraid to try something.

Stop being afraid and do it. RIGHT NOW! Start that run, book or blog post you have been toying with doing.. What is the worst that could happen? You would fall?

Maybe, but my darling.. what if you fly? flyflyfly

In thinking back on some of the scarier moments of my life, I have to admit they are followed by some of the most exciting.

I moved to Austin from New Orleans the summer of 1997 and while it was very scary and other than a job and an a one bedroom apartment I didn’t have a friend in the world, it was very exciting to be on my own for the first time- Scary and I definitely made mistakes.. (using my credit card to get into thousands of dollars of debt springs to mind as one)

I worked right after high school before attending college and that was mostly by necessity, because it turns out I didn’t have a magical college fund (don’t you hate it when life is NOT like the movies?) and had to work to earn some money before going to school. I started Austin Community College in January of 1999 and I actually looked forward to going to class, I was paying for it so I was absolutely motivated to go and do well. I asked tons of questions and learned so much in every class even the ones I was less inclined to enjoy.

In 2007, I was asked to stage manage my first show by a dear friend who trusted me to handle it.. Her famous words to me were “You are incredibly organized so I know you can handle this” and little did I know that a few years later, this very valuable experience would lead me to directing several of my own shows.  Scared? yes. Did I do it anyway? You bet!

In 2014, I lost 50 pounds by using the paleo diet and to mark the milestone I planned a glamorous photo shoot and when I did the dry run and growing increasingly more freaked out…frantically went through the costume closet…  I found out… “you will be wearing a swimsuit, because it’s the only thing we have in your size” – At first I was pretty mad, after all I lost weight doesn’t that mean more options should be available? This was not the case, so I looked around for a other outfits and panicked thinking.. how can I wear a swimsuit.. but eventually (due to advice from my Mom and several of my mutually sexy friends) decided to go for it and I must say it was very exciting to me how good I did look. Being scared didn’t stop me and I can tell you it wound up being an incredibly edifying experience. For more on that you can read this post:


When an opportunity came for me to do a workshop for 120 people as a professional coach and speaker I was 100% not ready to do it.. but I said to myself… Do it. you will never feel ready to do it but jump in and say you will. Doing that built my confidence even more and I can honestly say, I was not ready.. not even close.. but I got there..

So back to you, gentle reader, is there something that you want to do, have always wanted to do and just feel scared, intimidated and NOT READY? I have bad news and good news.


Bad News- You will never FEEL ready.

Good News- You can choose to do it anyway…

Think about it….

Slow down, what’s your hurry?

Dear Readers,

When I was singing with my church on Monday, during first Monday prayer (which is a totally awesome event that my church does once a month, its a time for us to gather and pray and we all sit and pray and sing songs.. I love it.

Can I tell you a secret? I used to hate it, because I felt like everyone else’s prayers were more eloquent than mine and so I would strive to be more descriptive and impressive until Monday night. I sang the songs and then when it was time to pray, I said aloud exactly what was on my heart. I didn’t care about impressing anyone.. truly.  That is scary and liberating at the same time. I could definitely stand to read my bible more but the praying thing is a step in the right direction. This post is not about me and how well I pray or even how well you pray.. It is about the idea that you do pray.

When you want for something, if you don’t ask for it, how do you expect to get it? I am not saying God is like a genie in a bottle and you rub that lamp and bam its done.. no. Prayer does not work like that. I have had some experience with this. I have prayed for “patience” in the past and God does not give it to you in a beautifully wrapped package with a brightly colored bow.. It tends to be a bedraggled box that you see on the side of the road that through your gain of that gift becomes the asset you seek. It looks different for everyone so watch for it.

Whether you believe in God or not, whether you are guided by the Universe or Karma, I think its a worthwhile thing to meditate, or pray or contemplate what your purpose in life actually is. Also, there is no one right way to pray or do any of the above. 

I think something that has been weighing on my heart and mind of late is to stop all the busyness. It is often looked at as a badge of honor (and I have certainly said it) “I am sorry I have been too busy to call, write, text, visit, (fill in the blank)” — It doesn’t help that social media lends itself to keeping us in the loop of liking and commenting but not CONNECTING with each other.

So the question I have is.. when saying that.. ask yourself, what are you busy doing?

Are you living the life you want to live? Spending time with the people you want to spend with? Or are you spending time on activities and people that are toxic and don’t add to you or your goals? Really think about that the next time you start to make an excuse for your
“busy”… What are you “busy” doing?

Think About It….

Change one thing..Change everything

Dear Readers,
A very bold statement.. but truly.. since I gave up soda, my ability to give up other things has increased exponentially! Take today for instance, Its a busy day at work and despite being offered donuts and brownies and cake, OH MY! I have resisted each time.

Here’s my evidence, Between December 17th and January 17th I gave up all processed foods, dairy, and sugar.. so in doing that while it was the most temptation ridden time
(Hello Christmas party, and birthday and holiday) but truly once you make the decision to CHOOSE differently, it does get easier. Now notice.. there was a 30 day period.. not 60..

On my birthday, I ate some very delicious not at all healthy treats but I committed to no keeping up the “no soda” bit.. and I sincerely believe that has helped me to keep resisting (not all the time) but MOST of the time with the idea that I want a different result for my health.. so I am going to have to do some things differently to bring about that result. This includes FRESCA which I love.. but its the idea of soda as much as the caramel coloring and flavoring!!

Don’t get me wrong, I still eat lovely macaroni and other items that are not in the category of vegetable or meat…. Important to note: I fail to resist the sweet treats all the time.. but the intentional act of resisting is there, and it is making a difference. The way I see it, every act of resistance, gives me another building block of more resistance, knowing I can do it.. helps me to keep doing it. 

What ONE thing can you change TODAY? The focus on this question is today, because we can’t speak into the future and say, I will never have a soda again, I can only say, today, I will not drink a soda. The picture below is the result of several months of “resisting” shoe shopping.. then after almost a year. I bought really awesome fabulous shoes…

Think about it….. manolosmememe