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But it will get better. It will.

I’m in a dark place. For the last two weeks I’ve been spending every bit of energy I have to pretend that I’m okay. I am not.

If you know me and you’ve seen me you probably think I’m great. At work I’m really good at pretending that I’m perfect. Around friends I’m really good at putting on the happy face. Online I post happy status updates and smiling photos. It’s a lie. Every single second of every single day I am fighting back the need to lay in a dark room and cry.

It’s exhausting. I am exhausted.

I am trying very hard to hold on to my Furiously Happy. Happy memories and the people near me who love me are what are keeping me afloat right now. Without the support I’ve been getting from online friends, kind words of understanding support from real life friends and, most importantly, Ben’s constant understanding, support and love, I would be lost.

It sucks. It sucks so bad. But I know that it’s temporary. I know that this will pass. The scary part is that because of the situation, I know it’s going to get more painful and more sad and more exhausting before it gets better.

But it will get better.

It will.

“Without the dark there isn’t light. Without the pain there is no relief. And I remind myself that I’m lucky to be able to feel such great sorrow, and also such great happiness. I can grab on to each moment of joy and live in those moments because I have seen the bright contrast from dark to light and back again. I am privileged to be able to recognize that the sound of laughter is a blessing and a song, and to realize that the bright hours spent with my family and friends are extraordinary treasures to be saved, because those same moments are a medicine, a balm. Those moments are a promise that life is worth fighting for, and that promise is what pulls me through when depression distorts reality and tries to convince me otherwise.”
Jenny Lawson, Furiously Happy: A Funny Book About Horrible Things

Why can’t he just tell me what I want and get it right every time?

Me talking to Ben about KC tonight: I’m so torn. I don’t want the responsibility to make these decisions. But I don’t want anybody else to make them for me because I can’t let go of that.
Ben: Wow, you basically just described our entire marriage.
Me: …

It’s true though. I don’t want to decide what we are having for dinner but if Ben chooses incorrectly I want to punch him. Why can’t he just tell me what I want and get it right every time? I really don’t understand what’s so hard about that.

New Year 2016 Fun!

Fun is always easy to have when Julie is here! Whether we have an adventure all planned out or just play it by ear, it’s always awesome. I think the best part to me is just getting to spend time with her. Long talks over lunch, laughing in the car or just walking around and exploring new parts of a city.

And the BEST part! No selfie judgment! No matter how many times I say, “Hold on! Let me selfie!” SHE GETS IT. *BIG HEARTS*

Here is an album of all my San Francisco photos. I know that some people get annoyed by how many photos I take but I LOVE that I can look back now and so many of these make me giggle and remind me of a really awesome day.

I’ll just share a few of my favorites now.

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Cassidy tried to photobomb ever selfie she could.

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Julie also happened to capture pretty much the absolute BEST PHOTO EVER TAKEN of Ben and I at dinner on New Years Eve. Pretty sure I’m going to get this one framed and hang it up somewhere.

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Things I Couldn’t Live Without In 2015: Beauty Edition

Here are all the beauty things I couldn’t live without in 2015! I really wish I had more time to do these monthly but LIFE AND STUFF. So since it’s the end of the year I thought I’d just do a yearly wrap up. Going to break these posts up between categories because I realize that some people don’t care about beauty products and some people think tech is boring.

Eminence Eucalyptus Concentrate Face Wash

Eminence Eucalyptus Cleansing Concentrate: When we were in Pennsylvania in September we had a spa day at an amazing little spa and the absolute best facial I’ve EVER had. I had them use products for my oily skin and when she put this eucalyptus face wash on my face I wanted that moment to last FOREVER AND EVER. It smelled so amazing, like driving through an actual eucalyptus forest which I loved because we had a eucalyptus tree in our front yard growing up. The face was was so cooling but didn’t make my skin feel tight at all which I hate in a face wash. When we were leaving my aunt surprised us with gift bags that contained the products that our esthetician had used and so I’ve been using it since September and I am HOOKED. This is for sure one of those products that I will buy over and over and over. My skin has never been more clear or looked so healthy.

LUSH Dark Angels

LUSH Dark Angels Face Cleanser: I’m including this for 2015 but I’ve been using this cleanser for years. It’s amazing. I know there are many people out there that will tell you that you should only exfoliate once a week but I use this every other day. My very oily skin gets a scaly feel after one day and if I don’t exfoliate often then it makes my foundation look caked on and gross. This is gentle enough to use every day and makes my face baby butt smooth.

LUSH I Love Juicy

LUSH I Love Juicy Shampoo: Along with my extremely oily face I also have EXTREMELY IN ALL CAPS oily hair. I am so very jealous of you ladies that can go three days between washes and I have tried every single technique to get my hair to that point but it’s never worked. I have to wash my hair every other day AT LEAST. Day one I wear it down and then day two I have to wear it up because it’s just oily enough to have to put up. I can use dry shampoo but it only works for about 6 hours and then the oil starts to really show through again so I usually just throw it up.

The only reason I’ve been able to get to the ever other day point is because of this LUSH shampoo. It has an amazing orange-y citrus scent and gets my hair AMAZINGLY clean. The clean scent lasts throughout the first day and my hair seems much less oily the second day. If you don’t have oily hair but want a once a week deep clean that will strip all the other products out of your hair this is perfect for that.

The best part is that you just have to use the tiniest bit of shampoo. I have very thick hair and a quarter sized dollop gets the job done and done well so a bottle of this lasts for quite a long time. It’s also vegan and like all LUSH products absolutely no animal testing anywhere along the production line.

Christmas Photo Dump 2015

We had a REALLY mellow Christmas this year. Ben and I agreed that we were going to buy our new couches for Christmas and he made me promise that I would not buy ANYTHING ELSE for him for Christmas. Last year we agreed that our flooring was our Christmas gift to each other and I wasn’t supposed to buy him any more presents and I did because I HAVE TO GIVE GIFTS OMG IT’S THE BEST PART OF CHRISTMAS! But this year I did not. At least 356135 times I put something into the shopping cart to buy him but talked myself out of it and put it back because I PROMISED.

Also, we bought Cassidy’s round trip airplane ticket to Florida next year when Ben’s parents are taking all their grandkids (including Cassidy which made my heart so happy) on a Caribbean cruise. So that was her big gift.

So we just did a simple dinner at my mom’s. I never really blogged about this but I decided to do a massive steak and cheesy potato dinner for Thanksgiving and a few days later I ended up in the ER. THANKS CHOHNS. So since then I’ve been on a super restrictive diet in that I’ve been eating NO red meat and NO cheese. I didn’t even eat meat other than fish for two weeks because I was so scared to react.

So then this happened.

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We ended up with ham and I brought my own potatoes to roast and coconut milk “nog”. Mom also made some glorious roasted squash and Brussel sprouts with balsamic vinegar. I heard angels sing.

And that’s it. Less words more pictures.

Hope you all had a FABULOUS Christmas and are looking forward to an awesome New Year!

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best place to buy musical instruments online

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WIRtW: 0007 The Spoiler Alert Clause.

When I Rule the World if you spoil any TV show or movie within 7 days of the first airing of said media you will be subjected to the appropriate punishment.

This is particularly important as STAR WARS OMG is coming out this week. Ben and I have tickets for opening night so no spoilers for us! If you are not quite as hardcore as us? This rule is for you.

Appropriate punishment for spoiling a movie is watching an excruciatingly annoying video for the length of said movie turned up to 11. If you look away more than once your eyeballs will be superglued open. Choice of video goes to the person you RUINED THE GODDAMN MOVIE for.

Here! Let me suggest a few!


Probably the worst music video ever. by gaylottery

You can see all my rules here.

Transition Into My Mother: 64% Complete

My mom is chronically cold. I grew up in a town where the normal summer temperature was around 110 degrees and she would wear flannel pajamas to bed. My brothers and I would sleep with windows open and fans on high and pray for the time to come when my mom would leave for work the next day so we could close the house up and turn the AC on and bask in the sweet relief of cold. Well, at least till mom got the power bill and we were all thoroughly yelled at and reminded about child birth pain and that money trees don’t exist but capital punishment does.

In the winter she’d wear her flannel pajama pants but she’d finish off the outfit by putting on the warmest pair of socks she could find and tucking the bottom of her pants into them. As a kid this horrified me but because capital punishment was a thing that existed and I was tired of hearing about child birth pain, I chose not to point this out.

Once I became an adult I started to endlessly mock her for it. 19 years of merciless shaming spewed from my mouth with her just laughing it off. Like SHE KNEW WHAT WOULD COME TO PASS.

Ben has Raynauds so he likes our bedroom to be warm at night. I have a cold dead heart and no soul so I prefer a cold bedroom for sleeping. This has been a constant back and forth for our entire relationship and apparently because Ben has an actual diagnosis from a doctor and my diagnosis came from one of the voices in my head, he generally wins this particular battle.

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So imagine my surprise when the other night I found myself climbing into bed with pajama pants on. The weather here has been odd this year. Instead of the normal gradual shift to colder weather we basically skipped Fall when one day Summer turned into Winter and the entire Bay Area woke up covered in a layer of ice. LITERAL ICE.

Then Thursday night, it happened. I was getting ready for bed and our bedroom was freezing. I climbed into bed to watch some TV, forced Kumo to share some of his heat with me via Cuddle Therapy, burrito’d myself into the covers… I tried everything and I could just not get warm. So after I had gotten up to do all the boring Pre Bed Preperations I grabbed a pair of socks to try and add an extra layer of insulation to my freezing body.

And tucked my pants into them.

I sat on the side of my bed and hung my head in shame as I realized that I’d have to eventually tell my mother because I have a stupid asshole guilty conscious. Assuming she doesn’t read this post we’ll probably be having a nice dinner somewhere one evening and I’ll make fun of her for something and she’ll make Mom Face at me and I’ll end up screaming across the table of a busy restaurant, “I’M A SOCK TUCKER! I TUCK MY PANTS INTO MY SOCKS OKAY! I SAID IT! THERE! STOP MAKING THAT FACE AT ME I’M SORRY!”

Hello. My name is Anna Hirsch, I am a sock tucker.

Transition Into My Mother: 64% complete

On Syrian Refugees.

I came across this tweet today and it really hit me in that place in my brain that triggered actual anger.

I’ve had so much that I’ve wanted to say about the entire Syrian refugee crisis but I’ve kept my mouth closed because I’ve found that there are people out there who are far more eloquent and properly equipped with that brain to mouth (or finger) filter than I am.

But I just can’t anymore. I don’t want to go into some long drawn out rant I just want people to realize that these are HUMAN BEINGS. HUMAN BEINGS that would rather get on a boat knowing they have a better chance of drowing than finding freedom. They are going to refugee camps where they live in a tent and shit in a hole and maybe get to eat sometime today, or maybe tomorrow, or maybe the next day? They are going to countries where they know they are not wanted, they are HATED, but being spit on and hated and possibly killed along the way? That’s all better than HOME.

Home is where little girls get kidnapped and married off to act as a glorified breeder at the age of 11. Where ENTIRE TOWNS get killed. A TOWN. Less than the amount of people that were killed in Paris except it happens ALL THE TIME.

The number of fatalities in the conflict, according to the Syrian opposition website Syrian Martyrs, is 138,858, updated to 30 September 2015.

Kids. Women. Men. Innocent HUMAN BEINGS. Killed because they refuse to BECOME EXTREMISTS.

So turning them away? Saying they aren’t welcome here in America? You might as well just put the gun to their head and pull the trigger yourself. If you’re a Christian that believes Syrian refugees should be turned away at the border, you’re shaming your religion as much as the extremist Islamic terrorists are the Muslim religion.

“The (true) servants of (God) the Most Gracious are those who walk on the earth in humility, and when the ignorant address them, reply with (words of) peace.”
——— The Holy Quran, 25:63.

“For I was hungry, and you gave Me something to eat; I was thirsty, and you gave Me something to drink; I was a stranger, and you invited Me in;”
——— Matthew, 25:13.

And just to drive the point home…

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And now I’m going to go color my stress away.

The Fit Tactic

Somebody posted this video on a parenting group I’m a part of on Facebook. Don’t worry, it’s actually a cool parenting group. We support each other by posting videos like this and harshly judging each other for not breastfeeding our kids till they leave for college.

It reminded me of a story that happened a long time ago that will really embarrass my little brother so it should be documented on the internet for everybody in the world to read and enjoy.

So Cameron was clearly the last child my mother was going to have. It could be that my older brother and I completely RUINED her to how perfect and lovely children are. It could be that she really just wanted to hang on to that last “baby” but she completely spoiled Cameron ROTTEN. Like, TO THE CORE. When they went to the store she’d let him hang out in the toy aisle (that used to be okay to do without somebody calling child protective services) and before they left he’d want a toy, of course. If she said no he’d throw a fit and she’d give in and buy the toy. She liked to blame this on his ADHD but I’ve read a lot of books about how to deal with ADHD and NONE of them suggest “buy them everything they want”.

One time I took him to Longs Drugs. I was pregnant at the time so that means Cameron had to have been either 7 or 8. I let him hang out in the toy aisle because shopping with a hyperactive 7 year old is… Well, it seemed better to let him make action figures and Barbies kiss than ask me a bunch of questions about why I was buying vaginal itch cream.

And, of course, when I went to get him from the toy aisle he wanted a toy. At the time I was nineteen and pregnant and had to buy the store brand cream with change I’d dug up from the back of my car. I was totally not buying him his 4th over priced fake G-I-Joe.

The next thing I knew he was on the floor screaming and kicking and pounding and writhing around. The two other parents in the aisle quickly shot me the death glare and shuffled their children out of there before their precious crotch fruit could learn any bad habits. I guess they were leaving that up to television or something.

I looked down at Cameron and very calmly said, “I am going to go pay for my stuff now. When I’m done I’m going to the car and I’m going to leave. If you are still here when I leave, call mom and she can come get you when she gets back in town.”

And I walked away. Before I had even handed the cashier my palm full of change, he was back by my side and acting like nothing had ever happened. While he continued to use The Fit Tactic to get toys from my mom, he never again threw a fit when I had him. EVER.

Looking back, the mom in the video looks like she had much more run teaching her son the same lesson. Cassidy never threw fits in stores or restaurants. She was the most mellow kid ever. I guess at this point I’ll just have to wait till Cameron gives me some nieces or nephews. Or better yet, I’ll just demonstrate The Fit Tactic to the next girl he brings home for a family dinner. I’ll wait till right AFTER he tells the story of that one time I scared him so bad he still hasn’t recovered TWENTY YEARS LATER.

But that’s another blog post for another day.

“Well, they’ll never lose sight of you!”

Those are the exact words spoken by a complete stranger as we walked down the beach with the dogs one day. What can I say, I love bright colored active wear! That day is was neon purple shorts with pink trim and a fluorescent yellow tank top and a bright pink headband.

Ben often makes fun of my multi colored neon running gear and I just smile proudly and then run upstairs and try to add one more color just for good measure. Unless he’s rolling his eyes at me, my outfit isn’t loud enough.

Yesterday I had a giddy extra pep in my step because it was finally cold enough to have to wear my most excellent splatter paint arm warmers for my evening run.

I could feel Ben’s eyes rolling all the way from Santa Clara.

#ThisIsWhyIRun