Start... and Stop

So. As you guys know, I am not currently ttc, and the possibility of ever doing that again in a realistic way is uncertain. At my age, the way that would look would involve donor eggs. Right now, the priority is S getting through treatment and recovering from his illness. He is done with the first round and surgery will likely be at the end of January or beginning of February. It will be nice to have a respite over the holidays.

Despite all this, and somewhat remarkably I think, during the last couple months, we have been sexually active and consciously not preventing any sort of miraculous conception that might have an ever so slight chance of occurring. Basically, both of us would be happy if this miracle should transpire. This last cycle, I feel something happened along those lines and then stopped. Here are the main signs below... what do you think?

1. The main sign was light spotting and cramping at around 8 dpo for just a half a day or so, which then totally stopped.

2. I was unusually moody for a significantly longer and more intense period.

3. I experienced sinus headaches the days prior and then a huge tension headache on Thanksgiving, along with slight nausea.

4. My period came in really weird with light spotting and no cramping after sex, which then totally stopped for another day before my period slowly began.

I know how low the odds are, but part of me still can't help hoping. And I am giving that part of me a little bit of room to have fun, but this month I got a little too attached and was bummed when it ended. :-(


The Debbie Downer Report with a dash of hope

Quick request for regular readers - if you're willing, will you become a member of my blog? :) My number has been stuck at 29 for ages... Thank you!

This post will mainly be a downer report of recent events but also include some excitement and hope for the future.

First downer event: I was informed on Thursday that I will not receive counseling assignments at my college for Spring semester. WTF?! Complete shock and awe. Commence disbelief, questioning, hurt, and tears. Talked it over with a couple of other part-time counselors, and they were in shock, as well. In retrospect, I think there was a policy change that initiated at the beginning of this semester. The only clues about this change were part-timers not being inviting to the annual retreat and there being a couple of meetings to which part-timers were not invited. Just prior to learning about this development, I realized that our important orientation/education planning classes were only assigned to full-timers for the Spring, and all the other classes were only assigned to full-timers, as well.

I have worked at the college for several years and increased my responsibility over that time. When CTE counseling was shut down two and half years ago, I was really concerned about my job, but since then, I've worked hard to integrate into general counseling and feel proud of my efforts to serve students and teach several college success and orientation courses. I *never* have empty appointments, and my understanding was that we need more counselors, not less. To my knowledge, I have made no big mistakes or pissed any key people off. So WTF?! Again, my only guess is that it's policy regarding part-time/full-time that I don't fully understand yet, and something with the budget (errors in planning made at a higher level).

Since finding out this news, I have basically come to terms with the reality of what this means and have shifted into coping with it and planning how to replace that income - at least to the extent that I can get by - for Spring. Two hopeful possibilities in this regard: an interview for a full-time position at another local college on December first. I think I have shared how much competition there is for these positions but fingers crossed. The other possibility, which is the one I would prefer, is signing on several new clients. I have already signed on two more, for a total of three. I would like to find four or five more in the next two months. Will you envision that for me?

Positive actions so far include hosting a great career transition Meetup group last Tuesday during which four women signed up for consultations! I am realizing I need to actually get them in the calendar if at all possible before leaving because now we are playing tag to set them up. But signing one or two clients from that group would be wonderful! I am also following up with close friends and colleagues to generate more referrals, which is the best source of potential clients. Lastly, I am taking steps to increase my online presence and find opportunities to speak to introverts who are seeking meaningful career change and want to make a difference doing work that feels like play.

I have support through my business program, which is great. If you or someone you know needs career counseling support, will you please let me know in the comments or by sending a message? You can also contact me through my website (and receive a free gift of a Career Clarity Questionnaire) on my website at www.helpnavigatingtransitions.com  And all good thoughts very welcome. This could be the shove I need to expand my business...

The other downer news is that I was late to the adoption orientation and they had locked the doors and were turning people away. I was sad and disappointed, but I also see that the timing was likely not right for me. My intention is to attend the orientation in December, knowing that once I start the process it will likely be a minimum of several months before I complete the home study and am offered a placement.

Okay, I'm going to end on the excitement and hope! I'm excited to go to S's dad's house for Thanksgiving this week. We are staying in a dog-friendly hotel that night, and I'm looking forward to time away. Also, though it's more in the future, I continue to look forward to Christmas in Oregon. And in the weeks before that, I will also celebrate my birthday and attend S's company Christmas party, which will be festive and fun! S is buying me a special dress for my birthday, and we plan to shop for our niece and nephew's gifts together.

Finally, though S and I have had some difficult conversations lately and our old dynamic has reared it's head, we have also managed to talk through it so far and experience a new level of intimacy. We will be meeting with our counselor next weekend for help with healing more of our underlying "stuff" around this dynamic and developing communication agreements for when it comes up. I am feeling hopeful!


WDYD and other happenings

Sorry if this post is all over the place... feeling like writing a blog post but not feeling very focused.

One topic I wanted to follow up on is how I articulate the type of clients I help and the problem I solve for them.  Would you please let me know how this lands with you? When you read it, does it bring to mind specific people in your life?

You know how talented introverts who have outgrown their careers can distract and isolate themselves, actually hiding from the power of their greatest gifts?
Well, I help them recognize and focus these unique talents in a powerful career that feels like play and makes a huge difference in the world.

Any feedback welcome! :) I made myself go to a conscious networking event for women, and it wasn't awful - another business plus this week. Oh, and I got one more client!

In less positive news, my crazy housemate, M, has struck again. S stayed over and slept on the couch (because I have a single bed right now). M and I agreed on him staying over on nights she's not here. Unfortunately, I set an extra blanket on her couch for him to use in case he got cold and forgot to put it away the next morning. So of course, she assumed the worst as is her way and completely freaked out on me again, insisting someone had sat and slept on her couch. She called me a liar and a thief (I guess I am technically a thief as ONE time I borrowed a small amount of almond milk but in normal roommate situations this might be okay? Clearly not this one) and said I'm a bad dog owner and she should report me (!). This latter accusation is because I leave Zoey in her crate until 10am because I don't go to bed until midnight or one and she's out until then and goes for a last pee then. She sleeps soundly in her crate until I let her out. Anyway, M also called me a f-ing b-word again, as well. 

This all feels so Jerry Springer, and I know I need to just not react but it's challenging when she's directly attacking me like that. I'm not sure there are any legal/material actions to take, other than perhaps talking to the landlord if it happens again. Since day-to-day it tends to be civil/tolerable, my current plan is still to wait until after the holidays and hope for a change - perhaps even helping her move if that makes a difference. Thanks for listening to me vent. It's stressful when these blow-ups happen and if I'd known what she was like, I would not have chosen to live with her. I guess that's the risk with moving in with people you don't know or that your friends don't know.

Speaking of the holidays (in a happier light), it looks like S and I will be traveling to Oregon for Christmas.  Yay! I'm so excited. I can't wait to see the kids - and everyone else, too - and I think it will be good to be home on this first Christmas without my Mom. I'm sure it will be difficult at times, but I'm really glad I will be able to be there.

Okay, off to clean the house and do some shopping. S is coming up here for a mellow evening tonight, which will be nice.


Halloween 2015

I posted a few pictures on FB of me in my calaca costume (a leftover from my time spent in Code P!nk), S in a hilarious - to me anyway - slinky crypt creature costume with pirate/cop accessories, and Zoey in her Taco costume.  All the comments were about Zoey!  Taco wins the day! :)

We had fun handing out candy to the cute little - and not so little - kids in the neighborhood.  *Side note - I don't quite get the point of taking a baby trick-or-treating to stranger's houses.  I guess it's to show off the cute costume and thinking they might enjoy it?  They can't eat the candy, right?*  My favorite costume was this darling little girl, with calaca face paint somewhat similar to mine and a sparkly witch outfit with hat.  It was so cute.  I really think the Ninja Turtle costumes are cute on little kids, too.  The older kids had some seriously creepy masks! lol  Zoey adjusted after a while and didn't bark.  She is so smart.

Then, S and I went out to get a drink and something to eat.  We had some good talks, and he reached out and offered me care and sympathy at one point, which melted me into showing sadness and brought us closer.  He realized he had unconsciously been pulling back some because he wasn't feeling well and that was how his family handled sickness.  He said he would try and work against that impulse.  He has two-and-a-half more weeks of treatment, then the holidays off and surgery likely at the end of January.  He's tolerated treatment very well so far, but is starting to have a couple of uncomfortable side effects.

Good news on my cousin's husband:  He made it through surgery well, and is awake and, though initially there was some paralysis in his left side, movement began returning.  Also, he was interacting with his children.  I am quite sure my cousin misspoke when she said he is having his entire frontal lobe removed.  Maybe all of the tumor there.  Anyway, I'm relieved that it seems he will have a much better quality of life than I initially thought.