The grass is always greener…

Near the end of our time living in Boulder, I was feeling slightly over-committed. I was working two part-time jobs, teaching an English class, volunteering at the Humane Society, going to yoga and working out 4-5 times a week, along with all the other little stuff that needed to get done to keep our home running. Now I realize that may not seem like much (especially to those of you with kids!), but I just felt busy and I would often leave the house in the morning and not get home until almost 9 at night. Even though I enjoyed everything that I was doing, I always thought of how nice it would be to just have a free day to do nothing. One of the things I was most looking forward to with our move to Tahoe was just to have a chance to unplug and relax. 

What was I thinking?
I hope you don’t mind, but I just need to share how I’m feeling this week because I’m in somewhat of a funk…
Even though I have been in this situation multiple times now, I always forget just how much it stinks to be in a new place where you don’t know anyone and don’t have a job. As much as I was looking forward to having free time to do things, I always forget how much I actually really enjoy being busy. I feel like I’m a much more productive person when I have a lot going on, and I’m much better at prioritizing and getting things accomplished. When I’m home all day by myself with an apartment that needs to be cleaned and unpacked and organized, I tend to feel very overwhelmed. It’s almost as if because I don’t really have anything else going on, I turn what should be simple tasks into these giant challenges and end up just doing nothing. I’m bad at keeping myself motivated during the day when I have absolutely nothing going on, and because I have no appointments or time constraints to work around I tend to dawdle and procrastinate and accomplish much less than I’d like. And then I always feel guilty that I’m not getting more done, which just tends to make me feel worse. And even less productive. And then I feel even worse that I haven’t gotten anything done. 
I know a big part of why I’ve been feeling less than stellar since we’ve moved here is the fact that I’m really not doing the greatest job of taking care of myself. When I’m home alone all day, I have a tendency to not be super motivated to make myself healthy meals and a lot of times I just don’t eat much at all. Then I’ll get a headache and realize, oh hey, it’s 3pm and all I’ve had today is a banana. Awesome. And then that generally leads me to making less healthy choices for dinner and dessert. However, when I’m really busy, I tend to be much better about planning out and shopping for a week full of healthy dinners, and I’d always pack myself a nourishing lunch full of fruits, veggies, and proteins to keep my energy up. Also, staying in your sweats all day/not showering (tmi?) isn’t exactly super motivating and just kind of makes me feel like a slob…yet it’s what I’ve been doing more days than I’d like to admit since our move.
On top of that I’ve only worked out once since we moved to Tahoe, and it’s really starting to take it’s toll on me both physically and emotionally. In Michigan, South Carolina, and Colorado, I had a gym very close by that I could go to anytime. Plus in Colorado, there were sidewalks everywhere making it super easy to walk Lola and run outside. There were also many different yoga studios close to the places I was working, so I had tons of choices when it came to working out. And on top of that, when I was busy I’d schedule a set time to workout instead of just putting it off and letting the day get away from me. Here in Tahoe, the gym at Cam’s work is about a half hour away, and I haven’t seen any other gyms or yoga studios closer to our house. I don’t necessarily feel comfortable running outside because the roads are super steep and curvy and there are no sidewalks. Plus, being there’s no snow, we haven’t skied or gone snow shoeing and I don’t know if I’d necessarily do either one of those things by myself anyway. When I’m not working out on a regular basis, I feel super sluggish and just an overall sense of unhappiness, so I know that’s playing a huge part in how I’m feeling right now. 
Another big problem right now is that I feel like I’ve been spending an excessive amount of time on the computer during the day, and it just sucks away so much time. By nature, I’m a very social person and I need interaction with others to feel fulfilled. I feel like a lot of the reason that I’m spending so much time online is because I don’t have anything else going on and I’m just craving that feeling of being connected to others. So I g-chat with friends, go on Facebook, and read blogs and then feel bad about how much time I’ve wasted on the computer instead of unpacking the apartment and getting done the things I need to do. I know that lots of studies have shown that increased time online can lead to increased feelings of depression, and I think there’s definitely truth to that.
I don’t mean to be all doom and gloom today, but I just wanted to be honest about how I’m feeling. This has happened before when we’ve moved; I’ve felt down, spent tons of time sleeping in and laying around and just sort of feeling like crap about myself, and then I’ve gotten over it, put the apartment together, found a job, and adjusted to our new city, and gone back to being my happy self. I know that I’ll do the same thing here, but for some reason I feel like this time it’s more a little more difficult. On this blog (and in real life) I’m an extremely positive person and I always feel like I try paint a very happy picture of what’s going on in my life, because that’s genuinely how I feel 95% of the time. I always try to see the good in things because I feel that so much of life is dependent on our attitude towards it. At the same time, I’m still human and I do have that 5% of the time where I don’t always feel like sunshine and rainbows. Right now is one of those times, and I realize that that’s ok. 
In all honesty, I feel like living in Tahoe is going to be a much tougher transition than I anticipated. When we were living in South Carolina and Colorado, even though I initially went through this same sort of funk, I felt like I loved both places right away. I don’t feel that with Tahoe…yet. Don’t get me wrong, the scenery is incredible and it’s a very beautiful place…to vacation. Before I met anyone in South Carolina and Colorado it seemed like there were so many different things to get involved with, so I had hope that I would meet people eventually. I don’t necessarily get that sense here. Also, I absolutely loved downtown Greenville and downtown Boulder right from the start, whereas the downtown here isn’t nearly the same. Boulder and Greenville had tons of different stores right near our apartment, where as Tahoe has literally no shopping. None. Now I’m not trying to sound shallow and as if shopping is the only thing that makes me happy, but I’ve just never lived in a place where I have to drive 45 minutes just to get to a Target. I really want to try to make this place a home, and I’m finding I’m needing little things to help me organize as I unpack and I literally have no where to go that’s close by to find things for the apartment. As dumb as it sounds, it’s just a little bit depressing and not something I’m used to. 
I have no doubt that we’re going to make some great memories living here, and I hope I’m sure when I come back a few months from now and read this post I’ll feel much differently. Who knows, I could end up meeting some amazing friends, finding lots to get involved with, and absolutely loving it here. I am not trying to get down on Tahoe by any means, I feel I just need to get to know it better. I’m just being honest that it’s not the instant love I had with Greenville and Boulder. But I do love the lake and the mountains, so I have no doubt I can make things work…it’s just going to take time. 
Last night, I talked to Cam about how I was feeling. One thing that I really appreciate about him is he’s naturally a great listener, and he’s become an even better listener over the course of our marriage.  A lot of times when I used to try to talk to him about things, he’d always try to suggest things I needed to do to fix whatever problems I was having and I’d get frustrated by that, even though I know he’s just trying to help. That’s how guys are, if you give them a problem, they want to fix it. Now he knows that, sometimes, I just want him to listen if I’m having a bad day and not try to come up with solutions because usually I already know what I need to do to fix the problem, I just want someone to listen to how I’m feeling. I really appreciate that he gives me that listening ear and no matter how bad my day is, that always makes me feel better.
As for what I need to do, I know what has to happen to get back on track. First, I need to make sure I’m getting enough sleep (that New Year’s resolution is a work in progress!) each night. I also know that even though it’s tempting to sleep in after Cam leaves for work, I need to get up and get moving. I realize I need to plan out not just healthy dinners for the week, but also healthy breakfasts, lunches, and snacks and stay motivated to actually give my body the fuel it needs when I’m alone during the day. I also need to find some way to workout on a consistent basis. I plan on exploring some of the trails around our house, and I’m also thinking that I’m going to try working out at home and see how that goes. My plan is that if I get up with Cam in the morning, change into my workout gear, and pop in a workout DVD and do some sort of workout after Cam leaves for work, I’ll feel much better about the rest of my day. That way I can get right in the shower, actually get dressed, and set myself up to have a productive day. That doesn’t mean I won’t find a gym in the future or make the trek down to the gym at Cam’s office from time to time, but for now I think working out from home is the best way to ensure that I’m doing something physical on a consistent basis. And as for my work situation, I’ve always been able to figure something out wherever we go, I’ve got a few potential opportunities I’m currently exploring, and I’m confident that the Lord will work things out like they’re supposed to happen.
 Finally, I know I mentioned earlier in the week that I’d be taking a little vaca soon, and I’m excited to say that I’m leaving to fly to Arizona tomorrow!! One of my best girlfriends from high school goes to grad school at ASU and I’ve been dying to visit her for awhile now. This is her last semester of school, so I’m flying out tomorrow afternoon and will be staying with her until Tuesday morning. I’m also really pumped because two of my other friends from high school will be flying out as well, and so it should be a fantastic long weekend. After going through the stress of moving and then just feeling sort of blah the past few days, I’m so looking forward to this trip. I think it’s going to be so good for me to just take a break from the computer and blogging for a few days and just enjoy the company of good friends, actually in person not on Facebook or via the computer! I’m definitely going to miss Cam and Lola tons, but I know this little vacation is honestly just what I need right now. A few days of sharing laughs with my girlfriends in sunny AZ will be the perfect way to rejuvenate, and I hope to come back to Tahoe next week feeling refreshed and ready to make this place my home.
I apologize for the lengthy (and somewhat depressing) post, but since this blog is my little space to record my experiences, I wanted to share how I’m feeling at this moment in time. Like I said, most of the time I act like everything in my life is so wonderful and great because most of the time it is…most of the time. As much as I love the life God’s blessed me with, it doesn’t mean that I don’t go through valleys from time to time. I realize that other people have much more serious, tragic things going on in their lives that make my problems seem very minor in comparison, but this is what I’m going through right now, so all I’m trying to do is be honest about my own personal journey. I truly have enjoyed moving around and getting to see so many different parts of the country, and even though certain things about it can be tough, I still wouldn’t change a thing. 
And because I didn’t want this to be a totally picture-less post, I had to put up this photo of Lola lounging on the couch yesterday. She’s seriously the weirdest (and weirdest-looking) dog sometimes, but I love her to pieces. 
And speaking of photos, I’ve got another post coming up later today…stay tuned! Xoxo