March did not go at all as planned.
First, I caught a cold while visiting my dad. So I spent an extra day with him, and I basically just slept and watched TV during my entire visit. There went my lofty blogging goals.
I came home and attempted to catch up on everything from being sick with a cold.
A few days later, I developed shingles. Right before my wedding anniversary.
Aside from taking anti-viral medication, the one thing you can do to recover from shingles is rest. A lot. Because apparently it’s triggered by stress.
So there went pretty much the rest of my goals for March.
And yet, I did okay. I absolutely succeeded in my intentions for improving my health. Sometimes that looks like setting everything else aside and just reading, watching TV, and napping for a week.
Also massive shoutout to Dan, the best husband ever, who is still taking care of me as I recover from shingles. Because it’s hard to get shit done when you sleep about 12 hours per day.
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Obviously the worst part of March was getting shingles. Seriously sucked.
The best part was celebrating five years of marriage to my darling Dan, who truly is the best husband ever! We had to adjust our anniversary plans since I literally received my shingles diagnosis on our anniversary, on our way out-of-town, but we still enjoyed a relaxing weekend away.
March Blog Posts:
I didn’t intend to blog much this month, not after an intense February. My cold and my shingles both interfered with my ability to blog as much as I wanted this month, but I still wrote three of my intended four posts for Belle Brita. Muddling Through Together took the brunt of me not writing.
- March 2019 Goals // February Recap
- Confessions of a Depressed Flower Child
- Grove Collaborative Review: Is the Free Gift Worth It?
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Happy International Women’s Day! ⠀ ⠀ To celebrate, I want to join #FridayIntroductions to share a little about me as a feminist. ⠀ ⠀ 1) I’ve been a feminist for as long as I can remember. I was in middle school when I discovered feminism existed, and it’s like my world suddenly made sense. Other people saw the sexism I saw. They believed in equality like I did. I wasn’t alone in my worldview; I was a feminist. ⠀ ⠀ 2) Feminist isn’t the only label I embrace. Christian. Bisexual. Wife. Libertarian. Writer. One of the negative myths about feminism is that there’s only one way to be a feminist. But just as people are all different and complex, so are feminists. ⠀ ⠀ 3) Pink is my favorite color. I love sparkles. I’m slightly obsessed with all things Disney and Harry Potter. None of that negates my feminism. I am a feminine feminist. It’s not the only way to be a feminist, but it’s my own. ⠀ ⠀ If you’re interested in learning more about feminism, I encourage you to check out my blog. There’s a Feminism link in the right sidebar that will take you to all my feminist blog posts. ⠀ ⠀ How are you celebrating International Women’s Day? #LaBelleBlog ⠀ ⠀ ⠀ ⠀ ⠀ ⠀ ***⠀ ***⠀ ***⠀ ***⠀ ***⠀ ***⠀ #colorventures #LetsBeLivin #FeministAsFuck #FeministWriter #FeministBlogger #INeedFeminism #WhyWeNeedFeminism #CalledToBeCreative #hotpink #Fuchsia #Magenta #acolorstory #LiveTheLittleThings #PinkPinkPink #PinkLife #DSpink #thinkpink #pinkpower #PinkIsMyColor #AllPinkEverything #thepinkstagram #allpink #pinks #lovelysquares #TheEveryGirl #photosinbetween #BandoFun
Books I Read in March:
I read a nonfiction book that’s been sitting on my bookshelf for over a year! Total win for reading more nonfiction AND for reading more books I own. I read nine entire books this month, including three rereads. I also reread a bunch of short stories and novellas, which I didn’t count. When you have shingles, you have a lot of time to read.
- The School for Good and Evil by Soman Chainani: This was a library book that I just couldn’t put down. It took so many beloved fairy tale tropes and just turned them all upside down and inside out. What does it mean to be good? What does it mean to be evil? This book explores those themes with deliciously magical storytelling! 4 stars
- The Impostor Queen by Sarah Fine: Words do not express how much I loved this book. Everything from the world-building to the diverse cast of complex characters to the creative usage of magic. It’s just beyond riveting. Oh, and minor minor spoiler… The protagonist is bisexual, and it’s NBD. Her romantic history only affects the plot as she processes her feelings. There’s no stigma or internalized shame over her attraction to both men and women. 5 stars
- The Cursed Queen by Sarah Fine: This is both a companion novel and a sequel since it starts at the same time as The Impostor Queen, but it ends after the events in the first novel. This features another strong female protagonist, but she’s completely different. I love love love when authors create complex female characters who are all awesome and fierce in their own way! 4 stars
- The True Queen by Sarah Fine: The conclusion to the trilogy!!! This book alternates POV between the two women. It’s so interesting to watch them meet and figure out what’s best for their peoples. Oh, and did I mention the terrifically evil villains in this universe? The plot gets so frustrating at times because you just want to good guys to win, but that’s the power of good writing! Even the parts that made me cry just make the overall story better. 5 stars
- Sisters First: Stories from Our Wild and Wonderful Life by Jenna Bush Hager and Barbara Bush: My dad gave this to me for Christmas one year, I think in 2017. In my quest to read nonfiction books that I already own, I finally gave it a go. So good! I couldn’t put it down, which isn’t something I normally say about nonfiction. I learned so much about the Bush sisters, but also my own biases. 5 stars
- Boundary Broken by Melissa F. Olson: This is the fourth in her Boundary Magic series. I reread the first three books this month before diving into the newest one. (Psst, all her other Kindle books are currently marked down! Buy them cheap while you still can). It is a great addition to her world of vampires, witches, and werewolves. She might just be my favorite urban fantasy fiction writer. Which is saying something, because I read a lot of fantasy fiction. 4 stars
For my health:
- I earned more than 50 stars, so I treated myself to another gel manicure.
- I’ve seen my new psychiatric medical professional (I think a nurse practitioner) twice now, and I have another follow-up for April. I also had an initial therapy session with a counselor. I feeling pretty good about my current mental health treatment.
- Alas, I didn’t start a health journal.
- While I did walk with my neighbor and her son twice this month, that was right before the shingles diagnosis. I hope to join them again once I have more energy. So I feel good about trying to walk this month even if I didn’t meet the exact goal of taking a weekly walk.
For my marriage:
- Dan and I very much enjoyed our low-tech weekend in the mountains for our anniversary. I napped a lot more than intended, and we both spent more time reading than intended, but we loved the chance to relax.
- I surprised Dan with something nice the first two weeks, plus his anniversary present. Then, you know, shingles.
- Bonus: We visited Gibbs Gardens again!
For our household:
- I finally started rereading Sink Reflections! While I didn’t get very far, I did thoroughly clean my kitchen sink until it glistened. But keeping it clean has been harder… Did I mention I have shingles?
- Dan and I cleaned out all of our alcohol glasses this weekend! We got rid of about half of them overall.
- We haven’t actually donated all of our stuff yet. BUT we did donate some, so that’s a start.
- We didn’t clean out the drawers from living room.
- The low-spend mentality was a fail. I ordered new clothes from Pact and from Marley Lilly.
- Bonus: Dan and I started redoing our laundry room! Full blog post coming once it’s done!
For my career:
- While I am proud of what I did as a Kappa volunteer this month, I didn’t quite check everything off. However, without going into details, circumstances changed a bit. Most importantly, I hosted my webinar, recorded it, edited it, and sent it out to my officers who missed it live.
- Dan actually created a YouTube video for me this month! Big news happened while I was in Greenwood with a cold, so Dan filmed and edited a quick video for my channel.
- While I didn’t work on the actual Blog By Number course, I did watch a private coaching call by Suzi, which was very helpful.
- I barely touched Pinterest this month.
- I only blogged three times on Belle Brita, not on Wizards Unite Hub or Muddling Through Together.
April will still focus on healing. While my dermatologist said my shingles look good (and almost totally gone), she also said to keep resting until they’re completely cleared up. Dan and I also have two trips planned for this month, so I want to rest until then so I can enjoy our travels!
For my health:
- Earn 60 stars in my self-care tracking chart this month!
- Treat myself to a regular manicure after 40 stars total (I’m only 30 away).
- Attend my second therapy session (postponed due to shingles) and my next psychiatric follow-up appointment.
- Start a health journal.
For my marriage:
- Plan our trip to Baton Rouge!
- Plan our trip to Ohio!
- Enjoy both trips!
For our household:
- Continue rereading Sink Reflections, and start to implement more of the recommended cleaning routines.
- Clean out the drawers in the living room.
- Find somewhere that will accept our donation bags of clothes/home goods. Follow through and finally get rid of these bags.
- Finish laundry room!
- Clean out linen closet.
For my career:
- Stay on track with Kappa volunteer positions.
- Follow-up with assignments with my officers.
- Reach out to new advisee.
- Create 2 YouTube videos.
- Continue Blog By Number course.
- Work on Pinterest:
- Belle Brita
- Muddling Through Together
- Wizards Unite Hub
- Blog at least once on all three websites (same as above).
As I will continue to do for this entire year, I have set simple goals focused on my overall well-being. I can’t make the world a better place if I’m sick and weary. I have to take care of myself before I can take care of anyone else.
What did you accomplish in March? What are your goals for April? Share your thoughts!