Tuesday, February 25, 2014

My Big Wake Up Call

First and foremost, if you haven't started reading It Starts With Food, I highly recommend it.

Second, this post might be a little (a lot) all over the place. Sorry about that.

I finally was able to get my car washed last week. It is shiny and beautiful! And on top of that, I got four shiny new hubcaps (I was down to just one). My car looks almost as amazing as it did the day I got it.

On Thursday I got a call about a temp job, did a phone interview, and then got a call later that day that I got the job, so that started yesterday. I wasn't super excited about it, but it was nice to get out of the house, and everyone was actually really nice.

Here's where the first of two (because I'm an idiot) wake up calls comes in:

Friday night we went to the fish fry with my family at the Knights of Columbus Hall. We had several beers and, of course, fish. (I should say that I had eaten extremely healthy the whole day, so I wasn't feeling too bad about indulging in some fried fish. Also, I should say that I had run out of my allergy medicine earlier in the week and since I wasn't feeling too bad, I didn't bother to buy more.) I got two pieces of fish, some fries, and some macaroni and cheese. Not. Healthy. But, like I said, I had eaten extremely healthy all day, so I figured a little unhealthy food wouldn't hurt.

Now, in the book It Starts With Food, they explain how certain foods are related to allergies, how some cause allergies, etc. A big reason I want to try a Whole30 is to see if I can improve my allergies and asthma and perhaps stop taking my allergy medicine and/or inhaler all together.

I realized later that night just how much (bad) food can affect my allergies. I began itching all over. My face, neck, arms, legs, hands, feet, etc. It was miserable and I couldn't sleep. Around 5am on Saturday I remembered I may have an extra allergy pill stashed in my purse. Thankfully, I did. I took it, and was able to get some sleep (that is, until Copper woke me up a couple hours later).

I had some broccoli mixed with yogurt and a little parmesan cheese for lunch and that evening we went to dinner with Chris's parents at The Fountain on Locust. It was packed, but I think it was worth the wait. I had a thin mint ice cream martini, which was delicious, and then I ordered a salad with grilled chicken (after the previous night, I didn't want to risk eating anything too unhealthy).

After dinner Chris's mom and I went to the Fox to see Jersey Boys and it was really good! And while we were there, Chris and his dad were busy at the casino not winning any money :p

Sunday was my cousin's baptism so we had to go to noon mass then stay for the baptism afterward. Thankfully, she was totally cool about all of it and never cried. And while we were there, my aunt and uncle renewed their vows. It was really sweet.

Later that night, since we forgot to buy something for dinner at the grocery store, we got Steak 'n Shake--cue second wake up call. The horrible itchiness came right back. I was miserable and didn't get much sleep (go figure, since I started my temp job the next morning).

I've pretty much been miserable since then. I don't want to go buy more allergy medicine and even though I haven't officially started the Whole30, I want to see if certain foods I eat this week might change it. And as miserable as I am, I want to see how long it takes for this to go away.

My plan is to start the Whole30 challenge next week for lent and Chris said he's going to do it with me! Well, he's going to sort of do it with me. Since St. Patrick's Day is during lent as well as a party for his company, he said he's going to drink and pretty much eat whatever he wants. And that's okay. Hopefully he'll still see some decent results from it (and hopefully I see amazing results) and we can stick with it even after lent is over.

Although I do hope to lose some weight and that my clothes will fit better, I'm much more concerned about how it will make me feel in other areas, like with my allergies and asthma. I think if I can get those under control--without medicine--that will be enough motivation to keep up with eating healthy long-term.

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

V-Day Recap

How was everyone's Valentine's Day/weekend?

Mine was pretty great :)

I've never been all that into Valentine's Day, but when Chris and I were first dating, he really wanted to celebrate. So we compromised--we got each other gifts, but instead of going out, we stayed home, ordered a pizza, and watched a funny movie. And it's been our tradition ever since.

So this year, I got him some new pants from AE that he's been bugging me about since Christmas and he got me a gift certificate to get a manicure and pedicure. Then we ordered Domino's, pigged out on that, and watched Sex Drive. After that we met my cousins at a local bar for a few beers.

Saturday my sister went with me to get our nails done. It's been so, so long since I had my nails done. The guy who did them asked if this was my first time--yikes! But they turned out fabulous and it was so relaxing :)

I think the color goes nicely with my ring ;)

We did some shopping and then I went to church. We went out to Fast Eddie's that night and that was probably a mistake. It was so crowded! But we were able to share a table with some friendly strangers just before we got our food, and the food was delicious as always!

Sunday morning we had breakfast with my family, did our grocery shopping and then had dinner with Chris's parents. 

It was a pretty great weekend. 

Today hasn't been too bad either. I've had two healthy meals so far today and I feel great. Tomorrow I plan on going for a run (which will probably be more of a walk, but I'm gonna try) since it's going to be so warm! 

I've been reading It Starts With Food:Discover the Whole 30 and Change Your Life in Unexpected Ways. I'm not finished with it (I'm not even half-way through with it), but it's already changing how I look at food. And while I'm not sure I'm ready to do a Whole 30 Challenge, I may be by the time I finish reading the book. My current issue with it is the cost. They want you to buy organic foods (mostly) and definitely organic meats, and that stuff is expensive. I'm just not sure I can spend that kind of money right now since I'm unemployed. Plus, if Chris isn't willing to do it with me, then we're buying food to make us each our own separate meals every night of the week and that will drive up the cost too. 

Either way, I'm really enjoying the book, and what it says makes a lot of sense. So even if I choose not to do the Whole 30 Challenge in the near future (or at all), the book has made me much more aware of what I'm eating and I'm really starting to pay attention to how the foods I eat make me feel.

Have any of you heard of/thought about doing/or done a Whole 30 Challenge? If so, let me know what you think about it! I definitely recommend reading the book if you're ready to change your relationship with food!

Thursday, February 6, 2014

Heartbreaking, Soul-Crushing Job Search

It feels like the longer I'm unemployed and looking for a job, the more discouraged I get.

Almost two weeks ago I took an editing test for a job I applied for. The job sounded great, the company sounded great. So when I got an email saying that they'd like me to come in for an interview, I was extremely excited. My interview was Monday. I was nervous, but feeling pretty confident. During my interview, I was told that I was the only applicant to get a perfect score on the editing test.

I was ecstatic to find that out. It definitely boosted my confidence through the rest of the interview, which I thought went really, really well. I honestly thought it was the best interview I had ever done. I was confident I would get a call asking me to come in for a second interview and/or a job offer. I felt like I really got along well with my interviewers and one of them remarked several times that they felt I was very qualified for the job.

So when I got an email this morning, I held my breath, hoping and praying that it would be to ask me to come in for that second interview. Instead, it said that it was determined that my skills and experience were not a sufficient match for the position.

Needless to say, I'm heartbroken. And angry. I'm mad that I worked so hard and didn't get the job. I'm mad that getting a perfect score on an editing test and several years of editing experience wasn't enough. I'm mad that I let myself get so confident and excited about this job.

I have been busting my butt since October applying for jobs. All I have to show for it is a part-time writing job and a whole lot of rejection. It is frustrating and exhausting. It's really difficult to get out of bed every morning with nowhere to go and force myself to sit at my computer and search for jobs for a few hours every day. Almost every day of the week I comb through job after job after job trying to find something that I'm qualified for.

This whole process is discouraging, depressing, infuriating, exhausting, and many other things. I don't want to have to start looking for jobs in retail just to have a job. I don't want to get stuck in a job I don't like because I couldn't find anything else. I want the dream job. Or at least a job that's a stepping-stone to the dream job. I don't want to have to settle.

It's so hard to keep going with this job search when I get rejected almost daily. It's incredibly hard not to snap at people who say "you'll find something," "keep your head up," etc. Those things are not comforting to hear. Especially after I've been hearing them for months now. It's hard to pretend that everything is okay and I'm not constantly worried about money. It's hard to keep going with this job search every day.

It's hard, it's frustrating, heartbreaking, soul-crushing.