What a slump…

Does anyone else ever feel like this?

It’s hard to talk about sometimes, because someone will ask: “What’s wrong?”. I don’t really know how to answer that question. Nothing is actually wrong right now, except for a sore throat that’s been brewing for a few days, but that’s beyond the point.

A mere few years ago, my life was in a dark place and I had to take drastic measures to cut out the bad in order to make room for the good. I did what I had to do and it has made the world of a difference.

There have been a lot of positive changes that I very grateful for. My home life has improved immensely, my financial situation isn’t as dire, and my love of life has come back in full swing.

However, there are still some days that I feel in a slump. There is no amount of time that I could dedicate to try and come up with a reason as to why. Maybe I haven’t been as productive in certain aspects of my life as I would like to be, such as writing (and this blog). But life happens, and I’m starting to think that I’m being too hard on myself.

My significant other is constantly reminding me that to achieve my goals, I need to struggle. The struggle means you’re working on it, you’re getting somewhere even if it is at snail speed. Maybe my slump is my struggle, however I sometimes feel unmotivated. Which doesn’t feel like a struggle at all, it just feels like I’m throwing in the towel and hoping that tomorrow will be a better day.

Is it because I’m getting older? I just turned 23, which yes I know is still very young. But I think back to when I was 17-18 and I felt so full of confidence. I never hesitated or told myself that I couldn’t do something. That confidence seems to have faded to the background.

Or is there some other hidden reason behind this feeling. I’m still working hard to try and find out why, and I’m not afraid to take the steps needed to find some extra help. I feel that if I could understand this feeling, or get down to the root of it, then I could take the steps needed to alleviate how drastically it affects me.

I’ve got to keep my head high and remember that I’m only being me. If that’s what it means to struggle, then so be it. The world is full of opportunities, and I sometimes forget that I need to carve my own path to get from A to B, since no one else has lived my life, and no one else can tell me how to do it.

This would be the perfect opportunity to say something cliché like “Just you wait, I’m just getting started”. But we all know that I started this journey quite a while back, I think it’s just time to refocus, zero in on those life goals of mine and continue chipping away at them. The struggle is as on as it’s ever been, and I’m not giving up, no matter the slump.

 

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A Big Responsibility

When you grow up, you get thrust different types of responsibilities. And these responsibilities, in my opinion, have different levels of difficulty.

You’ve got a responsibility to be a decent human being, which somehow some people find this difficult. Trust me, it isn’t.

You’ve also got the responsibility of going to work and doing a good job, like finishing your tasks in an acceptable manner. Depending on said job, the difficulty here can vary.

Yet, later in life there are bigger responsibilities that you need to be able to accomplish every day to the best of your ability. These responsibilities are running a household, or having children. Those, I classify a little higher on the difficulty scale. It doesn’t come easy, you usually have a huge learning curve to be able to manage those types of responsibilities.

Now you might be thinking, where is she going with this? Is… Is she going to have a child?!? No, no goodness no. Not yet at least, I’d like to believe I have a few more years before that happens. No, what I’m trying to get at is that my significant other and I have recently brought on a new responsibility in our lives that surprised us, in a good way.

At first, I knew it would be a difficult responsibility and I was right, it was actually really hard to get used to it the first few days, but we’ve gotten pretty good at our schedule change. Our priorities have shifted immensely.

We got a dog. We adopted a rescue dog from Louisiana, who had a rough start at life. But he’s the sweetest thing so we decided now was the time to bring this family of 2, to a family of 3.

His name was Huey, but he never listened to that name so we’ve renamed him to Winston! He’s 2 years old, and he’s the sweetest thing. Full of energy, needs to learn a bit of discipline, but all around good dog that is fitting in really well with us. We’ve had him for 1 month as of today. I mean just look at him!

He’s a heeler mix. Basically the perfect herding or hunting dog and we’ve already fallen in love with the guy. We knew it would be a lot of work, but we were ready for the challenge and I think its safe to say we’ve succeeded so far as dog parents.

Since he’s a rescue dog, he has a few health problems. The first being heartworms, very common thing found in dogs rescued from the states, especially southern ones. He also had a nasty cough when we first had him, but that’s cleared up now.

You see, a dog is a big responsibility because this is a living breathing creature that lives for your attention and love. It can’t care for itself. It can’t let itself out to go do its business, it also can’t tell you when its feeling ill or wanting something.

I’m not saying having a dog is the same as having a child, but mildly. Also, having a dog isn’t cheap. You can’t just neglect visits to the vet, and those visits are extremely pricey. So don’t go into it thinking your dog will be the healthiest thing ever and he doesn’t need to go to the vet, because you’re wrong. Things happen, dogs get sick and you need to be prepared to deal with those situations as they come to you. (cats too!)

But a dog was a great idea, he brightens up the mood when we’re home alone and makes us laugh because he is just so goofy. If you feel like your life could use a pick me up, and you feel you could handle all the responsibilities that come with having a dog, then you should do it! It’s very rewarding.

 

Building a habit

So lately, I’ve done a lot of growing up.

I’ve forced myself to build certain habits to live a more efficient life which would in hopes make me live a happier life and so far, it’s working!

Being an adult is hard and I thought it would take me a long time to get the hang of it, but really it’s all about time management. I’m proud to say that even though I have been living on my own for a few years now, I’m starting to get the hang of this whole adulting thing. A lot of these habits are very recent changes that I’ve incorporated into my life. My boyfriend has been a great help in helping me stay true to these habits, to be quite honest we do most of these things together.

1. Grocery Shopping is done every single Sunday

-We have a list of all the items we need, they usually are always the same with very little variations. We buy just enough to last us the week, no more no less.

-Old Natalie would have waited to buy groceries randomly when she was out of something, so there wasn’t much consistency in having a stocked fridge in case of emergencies like company or work lunches                                                                            

2. Laundry is done every single weekend.

-We do one or two loads, depending on how many towels need to be washed, obviously, this isn’t a lot of laundry, but we’re just a household of two people, so we can’t really produce that much laundry. Our hedgehog has blankets that need to be washed, those get thrown in with the towels when we do a load of them. I even threw out or donated a lot of my old clothes that I didn’t need.

Old Natalie would have waited until she was either out of one of two things; socks or underwear. I had a LOT of clothes so that would sometimes last a long time. (You don’t even want to know how long.)

3. Meal prepping is done once a week usually on Saturday or Sunday

– Meal prepping has been a great help! We just make one big  meal and that lasts us almost all week. Occasionally we need to cook a slightly bigger supper in order to have leftovers for Thursday and Friday but we’re usually pretty on top of it. Plus, meal prepping means you can make healthy things. So even on the go, you don’t have to sacrifice quality for quick.

Old Natalie would have cooked very little and stayed with easy choices like KD and instant noodles. Not very healthy… Sometimes it was just easier not to eat at all, which is never a good idea.

4. Dishes are done frequently.

– It probably helps that we have a dishwasher and a double sink, but dishes don’t pile up nearly as much as they used to. Meal prepping has caused more dishes to be made, but at least now I do them. haha.

Old Natalie would have not done dishes. They were only done in case of emergencies. But sometimes a dish would get so bad, it was easier to throw it out than to clean it. I’m ashamed to admit that that’s happened more than once in the past. But it won’t happen again.

 

So yeah, those are basically the big habits that have been in effect for a while now. It’s safe to say I still have a lot to learn, like cleaning everyday household items, I need to get better at remembering to wash the floors, bathtub and other items more frequently. I’m not saying I’m disgusting, in any means, I still do those things, but I just wish I had a better cleaning schedule, in time I’m sure I’ll get the hang of it and I won’t forget those simple things, because let’s be honest, those chores don’t take long to do at all. Sometimes I’m just busy and it slips my mind or I’m lazy.

The road to adulthood is a long one, but I’m getting there, slowly but surely.

Good luck to all of the other young adults out there trying to figure out how to get their sh*t together. And also to the seasoned adults who have been at it for a while, but are still struggling with the same simple tasks. You give me hope that perfection will probably never be achieved, and I’m okay with that.

Never give up, always try to improve yourself!

Nat

I’m overwhelmed.

A lot has happened in the last few months. *chuckles* It feels like I lead with that line a lot, but honestly I’m a little overwhelmed with all of this.

In my latest update post, I made a confession that was hard to do. I thought, how do I bring something like that up? And to be truthful, it’s been difficult to admit it out loud.

I didn’t really notice or understand how badly the situation had affected me and it’s still very hard to talk about. It still feels very real. I don’t know if I’ll ever be able to see certain things the same way. Sometimes I’ll think of things or I’ll see things that just remind me of things I wish I could just forget about. It’s like a bruise that’ll hurt forever but for different reasons and at random times.

I hurt for others. I hurt for all of those who live through what I went through every day of their lives. I see things now in public or online and it hurts a lot. I hurt because I’m more nervous and anxious than usual. I still flinch in certain situations. I’m sensitive to certain topics or subjects. I don’t want to be, but I am. It’s all still very traumatic. And most of it is irrational.

I find myself reminding myself that I’m not living that kind of life anymore. Reassuring myself that whatever happened will never happen again. That I’m safe now. 🙂 And I know all of this to be true, but it just hasn’t settled my anxiety yet.

But that’s not what’s overwhelming me the most. It’s not the sadness and anxiety, it’s the amount of happiness and joy that I’ve felt that’s what’s most overwhelming.

I learned to love again. Like really LOVE!

I’m seeing someone new. And he’s absolutely amazing. This guy encourages me to listen to music. Encourages me to just sit down and write. He’ll sing songs with me on the radio. He’s been the one to help me learn how to love again. He’s taught me how to love myself and everything that makes me, me. The amount of support and love he’s shown me has been overwhelming. I don’t even think he knows how much of a dream these last few weeks have been. He has not the slightest idea how much he’s helped me. There just aren’t enough words to describe how thankful I am to have him around.

I regained my love of music. I listen to music in the car now. I also put on music while I’m by myself at home. I didn’t realise how much I missed it. Like, I could honestly burst into tears. Joyful tears. Because, as I type this I’m sitting by myself listening to music. Something I had long forgotten how, or wasn’t allowed, to do. I had forgotten how to love music. How crazy is that? I’m shaking my head while re-reading it.

I’ve regained my love of writing. The ideas flow so smoothly out of my mind now. It was like I had a writer’s block that was so dense I never thought I’d write again. A blank page was so daunting. Now a blank page is a challenge, it’s so much just waiting to written out. All these ideas that I’ve had on the back burners in my mind are bursting through and my brain wants to write it all out. Get these stories out there fast!

And all of this freaks me out. I went from a point so low in my life to this! Within just a couple months. I feel better than I’ve ever felt before. My friends and family have been such a great support group. I don’t know what I’d do without them. I am just so, so grateful.

I’d like to thank my mom who came over for my birthday. It was a short visit but it was so perfect. My mother is one of my biggest inspirations and having her around helped me survive this huge event in my life. Also, a giant shout out to Heather. She’s been by my side through so much. I don’t know what I’d do without her. Girl, if you’re reading this, THANK YOU! .

To all my friends and family, you’ve all saved me. I am so thankful for having all of you in my life.

Gah, I know, I know. So serious, so deep. I’ll stop now. I’m making myself cry from being so darn happy. Sheesh. ❤

A lot has happened.

I’ve been trying to write this post for a long time now. How do I start it. I have so much on my mind. So much to say.

At first I thought well I should just say everything. In one long post. Explain exactly what has happened to me. Explain exactly how I feel. I realise now that it’s too much. It’s too much to write it all down in one sitting. It’s physically and mentally too exhausting.

I was abused.

I didn’t even realise what was happening at first. I didn’t see all the red flags. Almost a full year I stayed with that guy… He poisoned my mind. Told me I wasn’t good enough, told me I was bringing all of this upon myself. The insults, the cruelty, the hitting. It was all my fault. I won’t go into details because they truly are horrifying.

So it’s done. I got out of the toxic relationship that almost ruined me. Almost.

You see, I’m not this horrible person that he made me believe that I was. I’m not useless, stupid, dumb or pathetic.

I’m so much more than that. I’m nice, smart, lovable, talented, honest, etc. I’m a good person. And I almost forgot how great I was… I can’t believe I almost let this man control my life and change the way I think about myself.

Leaving him has changed my life around. I listen to music again, I have the itch to write again. I sing songs again. I smile now. I’ve become so strong and confident.

My advice to you:

If you’re in a relationship and you’re having doubts. Leave. Relationships are hard sometimes, but loving someone shouldn’t be hard. Love is supposed to come easily. If whoever you’re with puts you down and doesn’t support you and what you believe in. Leave him or her. It isn’t worth your time to be with someone who doesn’t make you happy. And if ever you are touched or hurt physically, you leave that person immediately. No ifs ands or buts. No matter how much he or she tells you they love you. You should never ever have to be hurt. (unless you’re into some weird sex stuff). Don’t let anyone lay a hand on you. If you’re having a hard time leaving a relationship, find someone you can trust. Get the help you need and leave that person. You’re worth it. Trust me, you are worth so much more than that.

 

 

My 10 Stages of Getting a Haircut

So I recently went for a haircut (took off a good 7 inches) and I’ve realized that I go through the same ritual every single time. I have extremely thick hair and it stays surprisingly healthy, but it grows like a monster. Here are the 10 thoughts I go through when deciding that I need a haircut.

*Looks at self in the mirror*

1. Ugh! My hair is way too long. I can’t do anything with it. Do you have any idea how annoying it is to be sleeping and then get your hair caught in your armpits. It’s annoying. I’ll book an appointment to get it cut tomorrow morning.

*Forgets to make appointment*

2. People must think I’m boring. It seems like ponytails are the only hairstyle that I know how to pull off. I’ll remember to make that appointment sometime this week because I’ve had enough of this hair. 

*6 months later*

3. I’m disappointed in myself. My showers last a good 30 minutes… The hair washing alone takes 25 of those minutes. I’ve waited way too long for this haircut. Enough is enough Natalie, make yourself an alarm on your phone and book that darn appointment!

*Books appointment*

4. You know, I should probably find a personal hairdresser. I always get someone different and it’s never done the right way. Heck, I don’t even know what to ask for. I don’t know the terms of different cuts. I basically just leave my life in the hands of whoever has those darn scissors. Ah well, one more time won’t hurt though right?

*Looks at self in the mirror two days before haircut*

5. I should chop it all off, like to my shoulders or something… Who needs all this hair anyways, It’s not like I can do anything with it. I just need to go in there and do this. No holding back, no regrets. 

*Two hours before the haircut*

6. But my hair is so long… It took so long to grow and it looks so nice sometimes… Okay more like rarely but still… I don’t want to cut it all off… I love my hair! 

*Gets to appointment and sits in the chair*

7. You know what, just chop it all off hair cutting lady. I’ll be happy with whatever you give me. I swear.

*Leaves appointment and sits in car*

8. I have to pretend that I’m happy until I get to my car. She blow dried my hair… I hate blow drying my hair. I feel like a lion. God I hate it. Why did I even get this haircut. My hair is so pouffy. I will never make this hairstyle look good on my own. 

*Gets home and takes shower to let it air dry*

9. That is so much better… I like this haircut now. It looks surprisingly good on me. But I also miss my long hair. Can I even put this in a ponytail? Barely.

*Next day after haircut*

10. You know what, as much as I like this new hair, I think I’ll let it grow out again. But I promise this time, I won’t let it get that long. 

AND REPEAT!

And I do the same thing over and over. It’s a never ending circle that I just can’t break.

You can check out my transformation on instagram. There’s a picture there with my new hair as well as some with my long hair. https://instagram.com/natalieleblanc7/

Thanks for reading! 🙂

Get yourself together woman.

So remember my little post a few weeks ago about 2015? Well as predicted I didn’t post so often after that. I am however trying to get myself on some kind of schedule because I feel somewhat caught in a storm right now. I feel like regular posting will help keep my thoughts in order.

You may have also read my older post about finding a new teen series to read. Well, I gave up that challenge because it requires too much buying. I can’t afford books anymore. Well at least not like I used to… I have a car now. Cars are expensive btw. (don’t get one unless you need one kids)

So I’m limiting myself on how much I can spend per month on books in order to actually afford my bills which seem to be drowning me lately. Instead I’ve tackled the impossible challenge of trying to read as many books that I already OWN as possible.

Pretty much my entire bookshelf sitting right in front of me is full of books that I have never read. Story of every book lover’s life right? I mean come on, new books come out every single week. It’s impossible to keep up with the flow.

Here’s a little story about my good deed of the year so far. 😀

So this little boy came to my work and asked if we had any Pokemon cards for sale. Unfortunately we didn’t. (If so that would have been awesome for me) His parents proceeded to tell me that someone at school had stolen their son’s binder full of Pokemon cards. I felt so bad for the poor guy. He was in grade one so you can imagine how small he was. Anyways, I decided to ask for the parent’s phone numbers and told them that that I just happened to be a Pokemon card collector myself. I promised to go through my cards and give him some that I wouldn’t be needing anymore. I made him some little homemade card packs and customized a new binder with card slots in it so he could rebuild his collection again! It was the least I could do for a fellow Pokemon master 😛IMG_20150122_100659[1]

It feels good to do good things for people! Have you done a good deed this year yet?

-Natalie