Here comes the sun.

The weather here has been absolutely gorgeous, it has been everything I have needed to keep a clear mind and a peaceful existence. I have been dressing for warmth, wearing less layers, feeling less weighed down. Give me this always, Universe!!!

Look, there is something about my legs.

When it is below freezing outside, you will find me completing my runs, however long they may be – 3 miles, 10 miles, whatever – in running shorts with my legs entirely exposed. I feel so confined in pants. I have been told that I just haven’t found the right pair, that I may need to see running pants as an investment and pay extra bucks for “high quality”, but I call bullshit. I just do not like them, end of discussion. They restrict my range in motion, I am limited, and I cannot handle that. I need my range in motion.

One night last month, Che and I went to a show in my old East Dallas neighborhood to see a band that only he, out of all my friends and acquaintances, has also heard of. The weather that day had been pleasantly warm, but I was fully aware that once the sun set, temperatures would drop and covering up would be necessary. Meh – I wore a dress anyhow, sans tights underneath, and simply threw a jacket on (my arms aren’t quite as tough). We ended up parking several blocks from the restaurant where we had decided to do some pregaming, and Che became needlessly concerned for my comfort when we got out of his car to start walking. In actuality, all I wanted was to dance through the streets, boogie my way towards our destination, to let my legs loose with the freedom that a few extra degrees on the thermometer had afforded them. I felt good.

I have continued to feel good, because we have not had much of a winter. Oh, how I dreaded this winter, without my pup and having to finish out my lease (Updates #2 and #3 coming soon!). The weather has stayed reasonably warm for the most part, however. Lately? I have worn nothing but dresses, let my legs roam free, save for when I am at work and when I am running. It has been lovely, I have been lovely. As it turns out, I had little to dread at all.

———————

Last night, my best friend and I (after watching the new Fifty Shades movie LOL) enjoyed patio time at a bar in the neighborhood that I will be moving to. We updated each other on our personal lives (so much can happen in the nine days you go without seeing one another), but mostly discussed how we both want to approach the current state of our country.

The election of Trump has motivated her to become more involved and active, which I must say makes me happy. Silver lining, y’all. There has been an awakening, people are angry, people are learning how they can make a difference, and they are doing it. We are doing it. I know what we are capable of, I have seen Southwest Airlines drop SeaWorld after we protested outside their headquarters, Ringling Bros is no more after years of protests at their shows, Dallas Animal Services received more funding after showing up and speaking at city council meetings, resolutions and platforms were passed and adopted at our state Democratic convention. There is power in numbers and persistence. Nobody can deny that.

Bestie asked me for guidance in fighting the fight. I am inviting her to every meeting, every round-up, every rally. We have already attended a few events together, and that piece of shit hasn’t even been in office for a month. We shall do good together. I could not be more grateful to have her as a best friend, nor could I be more proud.

After having enough to drink, we closed our tabs and made our way back inside the bar and out the main entrance. Quiet. Calm. Peaceful. Surprising for a Saturday night – a very nice one at that. We walked about fifteen or twenty feet and passed a gate to a residential entry. I pulled my phone out to open an email I received from the leasing office just after I had been approved for my place. The address (my address) in the email matched the address posted on that gate. You see, the property is made up of ten buildings in the area, and although I had an idea of the general location of mine, I could not point it out with certainty. That was it, though. No doubt anymore.

I looked up at my beautiful new building, looked around at what could potentially be my view, and once again became elated. Once we looked around enough, we headed back to Bestie’s car, a walk that I am sure will become very familiar to me and my friends. Can… not… wait.

———————

In short, my year is off to a wonderful start. I feel empowered, inspired, admired, and loved. When moving is out of the way and I have settled down a bit, my intention is to become even more busy. I have resigned from volunteering at Operation Kindness since it will no longer be a short walk from where I live. As much as I will miss it, my plan is to volunteer at the Humane Society instead, which will also mean seeing my other best friend Cent (she is the assistant director there) more frequently. I absolutely hate the saying, but two birds, you know?

And of course, there will be plenty of work to do for the disenfranchised. Ready for it.

So take that, seasonal affective disorder! You are not getting this gal. Daylight Saving time will begin one month from today, spring will follow shortly thereafter, the threat of winter weather will continue to decrease, the days will get longer, and I will be even happier.

Yes. Here comes the sun.

The best week

Here I am again, ending another year.

I tend to spend about a month anticipating the last week of the year, preparing for it, building it up. Then it hits, with ridiculous excitement and an abundance of love, I am overwhelmed and overjoyed – Christmas, Dustin’s birthday, our anniversary, New Year’s Eve – all crammed into one short week. And just as quickly as it arrives, it passes. The new year begins, and I am left thinking, “Now what?”

The truth is that I despise the beginning of the year. I realize that many see it as an opportunity for a fresh start and all that nonsense, but I don’t. One can create a new beginning at any point, not just January. I instead see the first few months of the year as underwhelming in comparison to December, bleak and desolate by cause of the dreary weather, and seemingly never ending as I await all that is wonderful about springtime (blooming flowers, longer days, warmer weather, baseball, etc, etc…).

It just seems as though there is nothing for me to be excited about throughout January and February.

I suppose I could set new goals for myself, not necessarily as resolutions, but because I recently met my marathon goal and need something else to keep me busy. Just last week I was sitting outside eating lunch with my coworker (friend, really) when I noted that my one-year anniversary of working at ADC was coming up. This led us to reflect on the year that has passed, all we have achieved, what we would have liked to achieve, and what we see ourselves striving for in the upcoming year. That’s a lie. He talked about his planned endeavors, lofty and inspiring they be. Me? I got nothing.

What to do, what to do.

Study and refresh my memory enough to retake national boards and finally get my license? I allowed my registration to expire years ago because I was broke and unsure about what I wanted to do with myself. But now may be the time to smarten up and get it done. I always yearn to be a more creative person. Perhaps I could take up art journaling, combining that with writing, drawing, photography, and calligraphy? Health and fitness-wise, how do I top running a marathon?! Improve on my time? Get as close to a Boston-esque pace as I can? Train for a duathlon perhaps? I’d have to get a proper bike for that… Yikes. I should probably stick to running and only cycle for funsies.

Meh, I will figure it out. It took half a year to decide to run Dallas, after all. We shall see.

For the present moment, I will continue to focus on this week and all the celebrating left to do. My bestie also happens to be back from Colorado and I am anxious to see her and play catch-up. I am hoping that we can reunite tomorrow.

Today has been somewhat uneventful, which is probably a good thing. Last night, my fella went out with friends while I stayed home for a quiet night in. I made myself dinner, watched an HBO documentary, did some light cleaning, and simply relaxed (yes, cleaning is relaxing to me because catharsis, you know?). I went to bed a little past midnight – the fella and I had taken naps together in the afternoon so I was not terribly tired – and looked forward to an early start to the following day.

It was not to be.

According to my phone’s log, I took a call from the fella at 2:22 am this morning. He asked me to help him – he was outside, not far from our apartment, and had apparently taken a nasty spill. There is a pond in the center of our complex, below what I consider ground level (i.e. the level upon which the apartment buildings are standing). A path leads from the leasing office, where Dustin’s Uber driver dropped him off (hooray for him being responsible and not driving, right?), to the lot in front of our building. The path is actually part of a retaining wall and along it is a five to six-foot vertical drop down to the pond’s level. Not very safe for lonely, inebriated men trying to get home in the pitch black night. One misstep over the ledge and down you go…

Poor fella.

When I reached him, he was lying on his back and moaning in pain. It took all I had in me to help him up and start making our way home. He told me his right ankle was too painful and that he could not bear weight on it so I had him throw his right arm around me and bore the weight for him. What a task!

I cannot lie, I was extremely annoyed. I had been awakened from my sleep to deal with drunkenness. Of course, he was belligerent, too! Once inside our place, he immediately allowed himself to fall to the floor, which further infuriated me because I knew I would have to do the work to get him up all over again. I wanted to scream at him to get his shit together and get himself to our bed.

Oh, but his face was one as full of sorrow as it was of pain. How many times has he dealt with my own inebriated shenanigans? And is this not our week? The week we celebrate finally meeting and starting our relationship? Our relationship that has been through so much turbulence in its nearly six-year length, yet still manages to work somehow and generate happiness. We may not be married (not complaining, just stating the fact), but in sickness and in health, yes?

I helped him to bed, removed his shoes, and asked if he had hit his head. He was ranting about the night he had, so I chose not to bother with trying to get an answer out of him and instead checked his head for injury myself. I got a little peace of mind from not finding any evidence of wounds and decided that it was safe for him to sleep. After repeated apologies to me, he finally succumbed and was silent.

This morning, I walked to the store to buy him a Naked Juice to help with his hangover and Advil to help with his injury. It was not his ankle that was hurt – it was his foot. That thing is so swollen it looks like Bobby’s feet from Bobby’s WorldA short while ago, I taped it up to hopefully get the inflammation to subside. [sigh]

He is so lucky I love him.

But I am also lucky to have him.

Hmm. Suddenly, I am more excited to celebrate him and celebrate us. I think we’re gonna make it, that guy and me. The uncertainty that reigned over me this year is finally waning and I find myself being reminded of all the reasons I fell for him in the first place. He… He has been more mindful, I must say. I needed that. It has made all the difference and I feel the next phase of our romance making its welcome debut.

Yes, I needed that.