I could have saved myself so much stress

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Growing up, I never imagined having kids. I wasn’t interested in babies. I didn’t play with dolls. I was a terrible babysitter, plopping the kids in front of the T.V. or putting them to bed early so I could spend the time talking on the phone to my boyfriend.

I spent my 20’s goofing around in Chicago, partying a lot, dating lots of people, and doing nothing to build a career.

When I was 28, my boyfriend proposed to me, after dating only four months. We had known each other since we were kids, and I knew I loved him…

This is what I learned.

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Why I Decided to Do It

Yesterday morning I got a text from my friend Sarah. Her dog’s name is Jack:

The kids are flying in this morning Lis. Then flying back Saturday morning. It’s time for Jackie to cross over to his forever freedom and be free from this pain. His appointment is at 10 am tomorrow so I’d love to walk before and I want you to have time with him of course. You are the best aunt ever!!!

I burst into tears. I knew it was coming. Jack had not been on hikes with us for over a year. He could no longer…

I stopped using my age as an excuse

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Up until three years ago, my summer bike ride consisted of riding eight miles to the state park and then circling the lake — a very hilly 4.5 miles — then riding home, which is all uphill.

I don’t know the exact thing that made me stop doing this bike ride. Yes, I’m getting older. Yes, I have knee issues. But I think the bottom line was just that…it’s a hard ride.

A couple years ago, I tried another route — one that was much easier — and then just never went back to the hard one.

I’m in my…

But I will do my best to help him keep his dignity

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This past week, I had to take over my parents’ financials. My dad had started to forget to pay bills, and my mom can’t see well enough to take it over.

My mom, my dad, and I had spent all morning at the bank, where I was being added to their accounts. Then, we went back to their house so my mom and I could go over their bank statements.

After we got done, I looked at my dad. He doesn’t hear well, so I had to speak loudly.

“So, Dad, I’m going to be paying your bills now.”


Meal tracking is not sustainable long-term

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For over two years, I tracked my calories using the Noom app.

Tracking Will Initially Help You Lose Weight

I started using Noom in January of 2019, because I wanted to lose weight. I followed the rules and tracked everything — absolutely every bite — and lost 17 pounds in three months.

In order to keep it off, I kept tracking. If I stopped or missed a day, I would start to gain weight again, so I continued to log my food.

Everything. For over two years.

It was exhausting.

In March of 2021, I had enough. I was so tired of logging my meals that I…

GiaB prompt #22 — intimacy

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It’s 11:00 P.M. on a Saturday night. My husband Charlie and I have been playing the card game Rummy for six hours straight. We’re listening to our music on Spotify, and we have beverages and snacks. He drinks bourbon. I drink carbonated water. He likes salty things and I’m a sugar addict.

“I can’t believe it’s this late!”

The time has flown by, because we love playing cards. We take turns adding songs into the music queue, so that we each get to hear what we want. Charlie leans towards rock — Beatles, Stones, Van Halen — and punk, while…

Shoes could make or break me

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The boots were torturing me. Half of my fourth-grade class had them. They were amazing. Shiny, black or white patent leather knee-high boots with a cute stack heel, although I didn’t know the term at the time. I only knew they were the best things I’d ever seen. And I had to have them.

“Mom, can I get black shiny boots like all the girls have at school?”


Letting go of diet culture

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“My butt looks huge in these pants, and they’re too tight.”

“No! You look great!”

“Easy for you to say; you’re skinny!”

“Yeah, but I have no boobs!”

“I’ll gladly give you my boob fat!”

This is a typical conversation between my Generation X friends. Depending on where you search, Generation X are those people born between 1961–1965, and 1981–1985.

I have been in a book club for 26 years. These women are my closest friends and I love them dearly. We are all constantly complaining about our bodies and trying different diets. At any given time, we are on…

I had to overcome my fear of what people will think

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In Running With Scissors, my favorite memorist, Augusten Burroughs, begins with a story of watching his mother get ready to go out. He’s nine years old, and fascinated with his mother’s primping. He doesn’t want her to leave, and when she does he runs to her bedroom and tries on her dresses.

In this stellar memoir, Burroughs discusses his addictions, his sexuality, his rape — in graphic detail — and his insane family.

I remember the first time I read it. I was astounded by his candor and bravery.

How did he do it? Wasn’t he afraid of what people…

Lisa Alexander

English professor, yoga teacher, failed Greek Orthodox. Searching for wisdom, clarity, and a fresh bag of circus peanuts.

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