Sunday, August 30, 2009

Catching up

It's been awhile since I posted and I wanted to give a recap of the latest news.

I finally got an email from Job #3. I have set up an orientation meeting to learn about the job. From there, I hope that I will start training as soon as possible. I'm a little concerned about being able to balance such a busy schedule but I'm willing to make the necessary sacrifices in order to get my life back on track.

Even thought I have been approved to have my financial aid, I have yet to see my school loan come through my bank account. When it does, I plan to use some of it to pay off my existing credit card. The balance for that card is around $550.00. I haven't been able to pay it down because the monthly fees are so high. I figure, the smart thing is to get rid of a credit card that is charging me so much in fees with my student loan. Then I will pay off the student loan which will be interest free with no fees.

I started working Job #2 last week and so far, I really enjoy it. The work seems very suited to my personality. This job is a work study job, so I will get paid a monthly wage that comes from financial aid and will not be taxed at the end of the year.

I'm worried about the amount of school work I have and how I will find time to keep up with it. I have been using the last couple of weekends to complete work that is not due until a later date. I hope that by doing things ahead of time that when I do start Job #3, I will not feel so overwhelmed. The hardest part to keep up with is the reading. I'd like to keep my evenings free of homework so that the Boy does not feel neglected or ignored. I finish classes in the early afternoon and then try to get all my work done by the time he gets home from work.

I feel that overall everything is slowly starting to come together. There are still some loose ends to tie up but hopefully it won't take long.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009


Relief has just flooded over me. I have been re-awarded my financial aid in it's entirety!!! It's time to start making some serious plans at this point.

I still haven't heard from Job #3 but their busy time starts in October so I'm thinking I will hear from them soon. Finally things seem to settling into place.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Mental Health/Relationships- Is this closure?

It's been quite some time since my divorce. I felt that I have moved on but there was still a nagging in the back of my mind. Something that told me I still hadn't reached the final phase of closure.

A sad circumstance last week provided events that would ultimately lead to my reconnection with my ex husband. This reconnection included a casual conversation as well as a gathering face to face where I was also able to reconnect with lost family members.

I actually got a very simple form of an apology. Can you imagine how difficult it is to believe that your spouse never cared about the pain he instilled in you or the mental damage he had caused? To believe that someone you gave yourself to in all your entirety couldn't give a shit about you is heart wrenching. To find out that it's simply pride that has kept him from showing remorse was exactly what I needed.

To see and hug family members who I thought held me responsible for the failed marriage but in fact saw no blame at all was wonderful. To be told that you were missed is all I ever wanted. I still haven't processed what this all means to me.

I'm not sure if it denotes final closure or if I'll ever experience that complete closure. But I feel a sense of inner peace that I thought I'd never feel again. I feel relieved that the ex and I can both admit our wrongs and talk as friends again without playing the blame game.

I didn't realize how much I needed that.

Counting my blessings & Weekly Goals

Alright, so my bad news from last week pretty much sucked the energy and enthusiasm out of me and I haven't felt much like posting until today.

I've realized that you can't let set backs and bad news stop you from finding a way to reach your goals. I've done all that I can to try to get things back on track and now I just have to trust that the universe will do what's best for me, even if it's not what I think I want.

I do need to take a minute to count my blessings:

1. The Boy and I have discussed what could be done if my financial aid is taken away. He has offered to help me pay the tuition so I can stay in school. I am so blessed to be in a relationship with a man who sees how important school is to me and will do anything in his power to help me attain that goal.

2. I am great health right now. Being without health insurance is scary. I'm so grateful to have not experienced any serious health issues in the past year.

3. I live in a wonderful home, rent free. I am able to garden, decorate and have a warm place to sleep every night.

4. Recently I have stumbled across some wonderful financial blogs that have offered me a lot of encouragement and advice. It helps me to stay positive when I see that other people are experiencing what I'm experiencing and coming out on top.

I won't hear back from the petition board until sometime next week, most likely. In the meantime, my goal is to keep myself calm and keep my anxiety in check. There's no sense in getting all worked up over this. I have pleaded my case and done all that I can do. It's out of my hands now. I will accept whatever happens and go on with confidence that I will find another way to make things work.

Goals for this week:

1. Spend no more than $20

2. Plan a welcome home for the Boy (he's on a business trip and will return Thursday, any ideas?)

3. Workout twice this week (this seems to be my weakest point)

4. Complete my first week of assignments at school and get ahead on my reading.

5. Pick tomatoes for salsa making

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Education/Finances- Getting crapped on

So yesterday pretty much sucked a big one. Because of some misinformation that a lady in the financial aid department gave me, there is now a problem with my credit hours. Because of this problem, they are telling me that I am no longer entitled to the financial aid that I was supposed to get for the 2009/2010 school year.

This is devastating to me. Without that money, I don't know how I will pay to attend school this year, setting my graduation date even further back. This is pretty much catastrophic in my mind. If I can't go to school this year, I know I will fall into a deep depression. It just means everything to me.

So I spent four hours yesterday bawling my eyes out and pleading my case to anyone that would listen. They ended up letting me send a petition in. The petitions board will review my case and decide whether or not they want to allow me to keep my financial aid. I won't hear back from them for up to two weeks. Class starts on Monday.

All I can think about right now is the horrible feeling I have in my stomach and it's all I can do to keep from bursting into tears every second. School is my number one goal and I worked so hard to get my GPA up, take my placement tests and work my way back in to the system. Now it could all potentially be taken away from me because of some stupid worker who gave me the wrong information.

The worst part is that I've done all I can do and now I just have to sit and wait while someone who doesn't know me or my situation decides my fate. I feel sick.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Finances & Relationships- Well, I did it.

I talked to the Boy. I felt completely humiliated having to ask him for help. Especially because I couldn't just come out and say it and instead of helping me along with the conversation, he didn't know what to say either, so he just let me sit there and struggle with my words. I don't think he meant to make it harder on me, but it did. Then I just felt so stupid for even talking to him. But I did it and it's over now and he wasn't against helping me. I do think he was mad at me though because I had such a hard time coming to him. but I know now that I will never let myself get in this situation again. I plan to pay him back and I never want to have to borrow money from anyone ever again.

But now I'm having this paranoia that because I chose to audit a class this summer that I somehow won't be eligible for my financial aid. If I don't get that financial aid on Friday for school, I'm pretty much screwed and then I really don't know what I'll do. I won't be able to go to school this semester and that will be one of the most devastating things for me.

I just wish that I knew everything was going to be okay so I could breath a sigh of relief.

Monday, August 17, 2009

Monday Mentality-Missed Opportunities

Nothing is so often irretrievably missed as a daily opportunity.
~Marie Von Ebner-Eschenbach

Big. Fat. Fail. I had several chances to speak with the Boy and come clean about my finances this weekend. He even brought it up, point blank, to me on several occasions. But each time I chickened out.

I don't know why this is so hard for me. He once wrote to me "You never ask me for anything, but I want to give you everything." Now is the time I really need his help.

I guess I feel that asking him for help would be admitting the ultimate failure. I've always tried to show him, from the very beginning of our relationship, that I was capable of taking care of myself. I wanted him to see that I was independent and that I wasn't just another girl trying to mooch off of him.

He told me that he loved the fact that I wasn't just another chick or girl, that I was a woman with her head on straight. Maybe that's what's holding me back. The feeling that I somehow let him down. That maybe I'm not that capable woman he thought I was.

I'm not sure how to remedy this. I brushed him off so many times when this subject came up that it seems lame to say "well, okay, I do want to talk about it." Why do I have to be such a coward?! I don't want to be that way.

I guess this is something that I need to work on if I am truly going to find complete happiness with who I am. I need to be able to talk to my Boy about things like this.

I will try again. I'll be brave. I'll just sit him down tonight and talk to him. No more missing this opportunity.

Saturday, August 15, 2009

Finances & Relationships: When they meet face to face

It's painfully obvious to me that nothing can be done about my financial situation until I'm well on my way with all three jobs. This dragged out hiring process with Job 3 is killing me. While I wait for all three jobs to fall in to place, I'm slowly digging my hole deeper and deeper just trying to survive.

I'm at the point where I don't know how I'm going to make it through the next couple of months financially. I don't really talk about my finances that much with the Boy but last week he found some notes I had scribbled about bills. He asked if I needed him to be my "Sugar Daddy" for awhile. In all honesty, I really did. But I was too embarrassed to say yes.

I talked to my sister the other night and she told me how it had been between her and her husband when they first started combining finances. She said she was embarrassed at first too but then she had to realize that he really does love her and he wants a relationship where they help each other out.

I know that my Boy wants the same. My sister pointed out that the reason I'm feeling all scared to talk to the Boy about it was because the X always made me feel guilty anytime I used his money for anything- even after we were married. We never combined finances and I pretty much had to fend for myself. That was hard when he expected certain things in the house and sometimes it just wasn't in MY budget, but he wouldn't pay for it.

But I have to keep reminding myself that my Boy is not the X. My Boy cares about me and loves me and wants the best for me. So I've decided to talk to him about my financial situation this weekend and see if he can help me stay above water until these jobs fall in to place.

I am really scared to do this. I know I will probably cry but if I can't talk to him about this then I shouldn't be with him. I am just angry that I've put myself in a situation where I can't take care of myself, that I've let me debt get out of hand. I feel so stupid and I look in the mirror and just see a big, fat failure.

But I hope that feeling this way will be the motivation I need to continue to get back on track and I know that the Boy will be there with me all the way.

Friday, August 14, 2009

Relationships: The most important lesson

Part of living a happy, healthy life is having happy, healthy relationships with other people. Right now, the most important relationship I have is with the Boy.

I spend a lot of time thinking about my first marriage. It's hard not to dwell over what I could have done or shouldn't have done. I don't want to make the same mistakes this time around. The most important lesson I did learn from my marriage, was to never take your partner for granted.

With the Boy, I'm much more in tune to what I say to him and how I act towards him. I make sure that I remember every day why I love him and.... (now this is important too)..... why he loves me.

I am grateful every day that he is in my life. I want to make sure that he has a happy and healthy life too. I don't want to be a source of stress or tension in his life. I want to be that place he runs to when life gets rough.

About a year ago I was having lunch with my grandmother. I had always been in awe of her and my grandfather's relationship. I never saw either one of them lose their temper or snap at each other. I asked my grandmother how this was possible.

I fathomed that she must get irritated sometimes. I mean, everyone does things that irritate other people and when you live together it's impossible to ignore those things.

I was amazed to hear her explanation. She said that in the first six months of her marriage, they argued quite a bit. They got on each others nerves and she was worried that things were not going to end up well. However, she reminded herself of the reasons why she married him and she knew that he loved and cared for her as well.

She made a conscious decision, right then and there,to put all differences aside. To love and cherish her new husband every single day, no matter how many times he left his dirty laundry on the floor or forgot to put the toilet seat down.

She just simply stopped reacting to her irritations. Seems pretty unreal, doesn't it? She told me that it was really hard at first and she did slip up a few times and snap at him. Eventually she noticed a change in the atmosphere of their home as he began to follow her lead. The bickering stopped. The pettiness stopped. The irritated feelings went away. From then on, they literally lived happily ever after.

Now, this doesn't mean that you should ignore things that bother you. But there is always a better way to approach a situation than snapping or yelling. If you have been a loving partner, then your significant other should be willing to discuss your concerns and make changes and compromises as they come up and you will do the same for them.

It is my hope that I can follow my grandmothers lead. I am smart enough to know that I have a good thing going right now and that I truly am in love with a wonderful man. I know that I would be a fool to take that for granted and I sincerely hope I never will.

Career: Getting my work week put together

Job #1 has finalized their hours with me. I will be working a total of 8 hours per week there. I know that doesn't sound like much but...

1. I'm working 2 other jobs

2. 2 of the 3 jobs are school related and therefore I'm not allowed to work over a certain amount of hours. It's basically just for experience.

3. All 3 jobs will add up to a full time work week.

Top that off with a full load of university classes and I'm going to be one busy girl!

Classes begin soon and I'm already getting very anxious. I've picked up my school books and have begun to leaf through them. I'm a little worried about having time for reading and studying. I will be planning my study time and play time in to my work week and I will have to be determined to stay on task in order to keep up with everything.

One of my biggest concerns is allowing for enough personal time spent between me and my Boy. He is the most important thing in my life and I don't want my ambition to overshadow our relationship.

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Finances: You've got to have money to save money

Right now, I don't make enough money to cover my bills each month, much less save any. I've got to change this if I want to gain financial control over my life.

Last month I applied for a job that will help me accomplish this. I already work two very part time jobs so this will make job number three. I know it sounds like a lot, but I really only put in about 8 hours from each of the other two jobs and one of those jobs will provide me with some much needed career experience.

Job number 3 will be bringing in the 'big' bucks. Of course, there's no benefits, so contributing to an emergency fund will be that much more important.

The hiring process involves numerous steps and is rather long. I'm only about half way so it will most likely be two months before I see a regular pay check from that job. Without this job, I have no way of fixing my financial status. Therefore, my debt will remain unpaid until this job is up and running. This is very depressing to me, but I will be able to use that time to figure out some type of budget to stick with and create short term and long term goals for myself.

Breaking it down...

I mentioned five different avenues of my life that I wanted to make some serious changes to. They include:


There's nothing I want more right now, then completing my bachelor's degree as well as my master's degree. I have 5 semesters remaining on my bachelor's if I continue to go full time. I know this is a long road, but I'm determined not to cop out and give up. During my time in school, I realize the importance of doing certain things:
-Raise GPA and keep it there
-Becoming a better student, writer, and researcher
-Networking with other students, professors, and coworkers
-Be a model employee. Got to have those positive references!
-Learn as much as I can in the field I want to go in


My ex and I had many mutual friends. When we split, it made it difficult to maintain these friendships without putting those people in the middle. I didn't want to do that. As a result, I cut ties with many people that I care about and love. I have been very lonely since then. Before I got married, I was a very social person. I had a large group of friends. Not having that now has turned me into a very negative, cynical person and I don't like it. Relationships with others are important to maintaining a positive mental health. It's extremely beneficial to your psychi to be social, laugh, and get out on the town once in awhile.
-Make one new friend each month (as cheesy as it sounds)
-Be accepting of all people
-Reconnect with old friends
-Be friendly to everyone I come in contact with

Mental/Physical Health

I suffer from anxiety and it's important for me to keep my stress level in check. This is hard because I'm a go getter and tend to take on more responsibilities than I can handle. I'd also like to keep an eye on my physical health. Diabetes runs in my family as does obesity. I want to live a long and healthy life. I also suffer from another condition that I've never really gotten medical help for and I'd like to see if I can take charge of that as well.
-Maintain a work out schedule
-Eat healthy
-Keep stress level down
-Learn to prioritize
-Take time out for me


The last one is one of the most important for me. I am determined to get my finances and debt under control. I was never taught how to properly manage my money and therefore I have made many, many mistakes. As a result, I have a horrible credit rating, no savings, no insurance, and a large amount of debt. This is a great source of stress and anxiety for me. In order to help my mental and physical health, I have to get this under control.
-Get a better paying job
-Formulate a budget and stick to it
-Pay off debt
-Accumulate a nest egg for myself
-Learn how to properly manage my finances

The Beginning

How Did I Get Here?

I'll admit it. I've been floundering. I created this blog because I needed something. The only problem? What did I need? Well, a lot of things. Basically an entire life overhaul.

In 2007 something happened that started me on a path to a completely different life. It was something that I believe I couldn't have stopped no matter what I did. My husband of four years walked out on me. He came to me one day and said "I'm not happy, I don't think I'm cut out for married life. I want out."

I was shocked, hurt, confused and very scared. I fell into denial for a few months and refused to let him go, even though I knew my life with him had been very bad. Over the course of four months I gradually began to see what my life could be if I had the chance to let go and start over. I started to feel hope. I suddenly felt excited for what my life could become.

In my mind, I knew that I wanted to create a new me. One that I could be happy with, be proud of and finally find that inner peace I'd been craving. The entire process of breaking away from him took over a year. During that year, I came to the end of my rope many, many times. But each time, I managed to keep my head above water.

A lot happened in that year. My life changed drastically. My life was a rollercoaster as I struggled to find my place in the world. About four months ago, everything finally started to fall into place. I started to see that light at the end of the tunnel.

I was dating a very loving, caring wonderful guy. We moved in together. I let go of some of the things in my life that were sources of stress and conflict. I decided that happiness is something you create. I've only just begun to realize how starting this blog can help me create my own little pocket of happiness and I've begun to formulate a plan.

The Plan

The last two years have left me broke and emotionally scarred. My health has suffered as stress has caused me to lose sleep and not eat right. I have been so caught up in my own life's problems that I have forgotten how important it is to be there for other people around you and to do what you can to help others. I've become very selfish. I've realized that providing for myself is next to impossible without an education.

I've decided to use this blog to track my progress on my pathway to happiness- greener grass. There are 5 aspects of my life that I feel I need to get control of in order to find that happiness.

1. Career/Education
2. Relationships
3. Mental Health/Physical Health
4. Finances

What Can I Gain?

I never want to feel out of control of my life again. There were many times during the past two years that I felt I was not capable of everything that life threw at me. I felt helpless and alone. I searched for a way to end my pain, to run away from the mess my life had become. Now, I want to have the confidence to face life's challenges head on and to conquer them one at a time. I hope to become a stronger, happier person through all of this.

I've never felt this much excitement to make changes in my life. Usually change intimidates me. But not anymore. It's time to take back my life.