- If I'm cutting out, or down on, social media then I want to replace it with reading material that will actually give me some substance to mentally chew on. Meaning, real books, not internet threads. It would be amazing if I could read one physical, hold-in-your-hands book per week, and depending on which ones I choose I think this is a totally doable goal. And, there will still be the downloaded books on my phone and tablet, ones that I can pull out literally whenever, whether it's in a bathroom stall at work, killing time in some medical professionals waiting room, or I've arrived early to a movie and the previews won't even be starting for ten more minutes (I did this over the past weekend, while waiting for Manchester by the Sea to start I chipped away at Leah Remini's Troublemaker via GoogleBooks).
- And speaking of that tablet... oy vey, I am way too delayed in integrating this into my life, and I feel bad about it. My (very generous) boyfriend gifted it to me at our first Christmas together...three years ago. At the time we weren't living together, so I did find myself using it often on the nights where I stayed at my own apartment, alone with just my cat. I used it frequently then to stream movies/TV, play games he had loaded onto it for me, and aimlessly scroll through all the standard social media platforms (Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, etc.). But, since merging our "households" a year and a half ago, it's mostly gone untouched, though still charged on my bedside table. While he hasn't said it in specific words, I feel pretty strongly that this bums him out. Because it wasn't a cheap purchase, and he's a tech-geek that works in the tech industry, so I feel like those two things made him really excited to give me this awesome piece of technology - as such, now I assume that it bums him out that I don't really use it anymore. And I want to, because it's so much easier to read with its bigger screen size, but more often than not my phone is always within arm's reach, it does all the same things the tablet does, and it's just easier to grab that and squint. This has to change! I have a boyfriend that was already successful and financially independent when I met him, and I picked up right away that one of the ways he likes to spend his money is on gifts for the people he cares about that he thinks they will greatly benefit from and enjoy. I know that's why he chose to gift me the tablet for Christmas 2014, and it makes me really sad to realize how, right now, I'm pretty much conveying that I don't care about it because I don't really use it. Which makes me feel terrible. I'm degrading myself in my head right now as I write this: "You are such an ungrateful little snot! This man spent a significant amount of money on something and you never touch it! Bad girlfriend, BAD GIRLFRIEND!!!"
- This same wonderful and generous boyfriend also shared with me recently (in a conversation a month or two ago) that he wished there was more of a sense that we were in a home we were sharing, rather than just having me come in, store 80% of my belongings in boxes in the basement, and basically go about life in what continues to feel like "his house." And from a financial stand point it still is - he continues to take care of the mortgage, utilities, cable/internet, etc. and he has not asked me to contribute monetarily to these expenses due to our incomes being at drastically different levels. In exchange I handle our weekly grocery runs and a majority of the daily basic chores: kitchen and bathroom cleaning, laundry, vacuuming, etc. I would really like to start approaching this from a different angle, and with more pronounced determination. As in, I don't want to just be cleaning up after our day to day routines, I want to be a part in improving the home that we should be seeing as something we share. In my mind, this would translate to taking on more house projects by the horns, myself. Not necessarily carrying out the changes alone, because it's important to me that what my boyfriend wants and needs out of the home be implemented, but moreso spearheading the start of these projects on my own. The most glaring example to me are things like updating the window treatments, replacing broken door handles and crown molding, and slapping a fresh coat of paint in rooms that are in desperate need of a refresh. For all of the home decor and mommy bloggers I follow, this shouldn't be a hard mindset to put myself in. If I want to actually get progress started though, there's probably an Excel doc in my future with budget outlines, calculations, and estimated timelines. It needs to happen. I want it to happen.
One of the things I'm constantly terrified about is that I'm letting down the people I love most by not living up to the expectations they have for me. I'm afraid I'm disappointing more people than just myself, but I'm also scared shitless of going about change in the wrong way and then having to suffer the consequences. As a result, I do a lot of hiding in my own head, not sharing myself with others.
That. Has. To stop.