To be honest, I am struggling emotionally and physically right now.
The really short story? Managing Crohn’s Disease is taking its toll on my emotional well-being. Plus my skin infection of 3 months is bothering me physically, and the constant discomfort is bothering me emotionally.
The end result is a lack of focus for the things that should matter to me, plus a growing disinterest in anything other than entertainment. I guess the upside is I’m reading a lot.
This is how I look most of the time. I’m a smiley person. I write with lots of exclamation points. My favorite emojis are: 💗😍💕💖💞💝🌸😊😂🌷😉🎉🌺 in that order at the moment. ⠀ ⠀ But I don’t feel like this at the moment. I want to make a difference in the world, and I want to do so while earning an income. I’m starting to lose hope that I can do both. ⠀ ⠀ I feel like nothing I do is good enough. I used to be this confident, accomplished young woman, and now all I can say is I used to live in France, I married well, and I have a lot of Instagram followers. ⠀ ⠀ So this is your reminder that not everything is as it seems. I will always post pretty photos to Instagram, but they’re not the full story of my life. ⠀ ⠀ I’m going away for the weekend with my husband, without my laptop. I hope a few days of scenic drives and fresh seafood will help me focus on who I want to be and the life I want to live. ⠀ ⠀ What’s the story behind your photos?⠀ ⠀ #LaBelleBlog
I’ve spent the last 3 years setting monthly goals. I love looking back in 6-month increments to see how much progress I’ve made long-term. Even when I have a month like last month, in which I did very little, I’ve still positively improved my life over the last 3 years.
Today I will recap October 2017 as usual, but I will not set goals for November. Or December, for that matter.
I need to take a step back from blogging. While I haven’t blogged as much over the last several months, I’ve still spent considerable time on social media, plus time on lengthy still-not-finished blog posts.
Instagram no longer brings me the joy it once did, so I’ve slowly cut back on my time in the app. I’ve stopped trying to grow my main account, focusing instead on engagement. And even then, I’m just not as interested as I used to be.
AD What time is it? Time for a little trick-or-treat… Treat yourself to the Apollo Surprise Box! This colorful clock is certainly a treat in my home office. Hidden behind the white center are three more bright colors that I can fan out. I love being able to change the look of my clock to match my decor. If you’re more interested in a spooky trick, swipe to my next photo. Skull lip balm! Super-moisturizing and so appropriate for Halloween!!! My Surprise Box included a few other goodies—check out my Story to see them! Get 15% off your own @theapollobox Surprise Box with code SURPRISE15, good for your first 3 months. Check out the link in my bio for more details! If this were your clock, what colors would you display? #LaBelleBlog
I need to better balance my time between learning and doing. Recently I’ve tried to do both fully, and instead failed spectacularly at doing either with intention. I have some great courses to take and books to read to improve my blogging, but I need to take the time to do just a bit as a time, implementing what I learn as I go along.
All that said, I still have a few planned blog posts for this month and next. I’m working on a sponsored post for next week, plus a gift guide for the end of the month. In December I’ll announce the new prompts for February’s blog challenge, which I’m excited to bring back for its 3rd year!
For my career:
- I didn’t make any progress on publishing the paperback version of my mother’s book.
- Market Muddling Through Again:
- Nope, no new new freebie.
- I still only have 16 email subscribers.
- I didn’t create Muddling Through Writer Guidelines.
- Yes, I blogged 2x!
- I didn’t grow my Facebook likes at all.
- Yes, I stayed on track with my Kappa volunteer position.
- While I actually lost Instagram followers, that was intentional. I’ve very conservatively blocked followers in order to focus on a more engaged audience.
- I only blogged 3x on Belle Brita, not 6x.
- Yes, I updated 2 old blog posts with better photos/graphics!
- But I didn’t update my sidebar and navigation bar.
October 2017 Blog Posts:
- October 2017 Goals // September Recap
- 10 Best Restaurants in Greenwood, SC
- #MeToo: My Story of Sexual Harassment and Sexual Assault
#MeToo ⠀ ⠀ It breaks my heart to see this surge in popularity for two deceptively simple words.⠀ ⠀ Me too. If all the women who have been sexually harassed or assaulted wrote "Me too." as a status, we might give people a sense of the magnitude of the problem.⠀ ⠀ I was 12 the FIRST time someone sexually assaulted me.⠀ ⠀ 12. ⠀ ⠀ I was 16 when the sexual harassment started. I'm 30 now, and the sexual harassment hasn't ended yet. ⠀ ⠀ I am weary.⠀ ⠀ I am weary from the cumulative trauma of a lifetime of misogynistic bullshit. ⠀ ⠀ I am weary from telling my story countless times and reading the stories of other survivors.⠀ ⠀ I am weary from the responses that still blame women for the actions of men. Why didn't you say something sooner? What were you wearing? Are you sure you didn't just misinterpret him? Why are you trying to ruin his life? ⠀ ⠀ I am weary, but I am not defeated. ⠀ ⠀ I am a survivor. I believe survivors. I stand with survivors. ⠀ ⠀ Your story matters. Every incident of sexual harassment, sexual assault, attempted rape, and rape is WRONG. Do not let anyone dismiss your experiences. ⠀ ⠀ I am with you.⠀ ⠀ Me too.⠀ ⠀ If you want to read more, I will have a new blog post up tomorrow. #LaBelleBlog ⠀ ⠀ #feminism #feminist #feministaf #feministasfuck #whyineedfeminism #feministblogger #feministwriter #ineedfeminism #whyweneedfeminism ⠀ ⠀ #walltraveled #studiodiywallcrawl #ihavethisthingwithpink #lishlovespink #thinkpink #pinkpower #millennialpink #allpink #lightpink #allpinkeverything #ilovepink #prettypink #pinks ⠀ ⠀ #bloggersgetsocial #createyourhappy #calledtobecreative #candyminimal
For my health:
- I decided to postpone plans for my Crohn’s diet until after the holidays.
- I did see my dermatologist, who I need to see again.
- Alas, I didn’t exercise with any intention. Dan and I did some walking with our various trips, but my goal was to exercise every week.
- While I ate some salads, I didn’t eat 3 salads every single week.
- I worked really hard to be off my phone by 9:30pm each night. However, I didn’t succeed every night. I am thinking of how to accomplish this long-term. I have problems sleeping, and I think being away from my phone before bed will help.
For my marriage:
- I think I only checked Instagram 4x per day while on vacation in New England? Certainly I tried to stay off Instagram.
- The first week of October, I took out the trash (usually Dan’s chore) and gave him a surprise foot massage, but my unexpectedly nice things didn’t last all month.
- I’ve done zero planning for our trip to Japan.
Dan and I spent a glorious six days in New England! After my struggles last week, a low-tech vacation was just what I needed to refresh. And thank you for all your kind comments on my last post! 💗 We visited so many delightful towns and enjoyed quite a few tourist attractions, including The House of Seven Gables. The house’s history includes strong women and a beautiful garden still blooming with pink flowers, so clearly I was right at home. 🌸 What did I miss on vacation? Leave a comment, and I’ll check out your latest post! #LaBelleBlog
For our household:
- Nope, I didn’t declutter every week, although I decluttered some.
- Nor did I meal-plan every week, although I meal-planned some.
- I met my gardening goal halfway, since I spent time in the garden 2 weeks. Just not every week.
- I didn’t work on my vanity drawers at all.
- Nor did I deep-clean our bedroom.
- Nor did I dust the entire house (not counting spare bedrooms).
- I also didn’t send out overdue wedding cards/gifts.
- And I didn’t renew my passport.
While I don’t really have goals for this month, I do have intentions.
I’m spending almost two weeks in Greenwood for Thanksgiving. I plan on seeing friends and cleaning out my childhood bedroom.
For my blog, I just want to focus on a few long-term things. I want to update old blog posts to improve my Pinterest traffic. I also want to read more books and start taking my courses.
Finally, I want to work on all the overdue tasks and chores around the house. I’ve let so many little things slide because they aren’t important, but they still need to get done.
So that’s my life. How is yours?