Juice Cleanse, you say? Don’t mind if we do.

Hi, so several of you have asked about the juice cleanse Jeff and I just did. It was an adventure, a bonding experience and a little awful all at the same time– and as you know, my schtick is being a wild truth teller, so here goes.

This was not my first time around proverbial the juice block, as I attempted such a cleanse 1 year and 4 months ago– actually the precise day that I met my Jeff was day two of that attempt. I tried to focus on maintaining my “normal” through a fog of hunger induced haze– which at that precise moment meant participating in the United Way training we were attending and also not looking like an idiot in front of this super hot guy. Apparently I am either VERY attractive while in a state of reduced caloric intake or I am an astounding actress. Let’s split the difference, yes?

That time, I abandoned ship on day two because I felt like total shit, nor did I have a buddy to text in the middle of the day to whine about it, or text about bathroom etiquette at work whilst engaging in said cleanse (keep reading). Also, it was like 4 days before my period was to start and if there’s ever a time to NOT do a cleanse… well.

So this time, when my dashingly handsome and exceedingly kind boyfriend was all “I want a kick start to my health, I want to do a juice cleanse” I was like “I totally am going to block out how horrifically terrible it was that other time and start Googling 2-for-1 specials right actually, immediately now.” Cause that’s the kind of gal I am. You need a partner for a wild adventure? Juice cleanse? Half marathon? Cliff diving in Zimbabwe? Kate is IN. I am a ride or die kinda partner.

We looked at calendars, we planned, we ordered, we texted each other to track our little package of nutritional goodness as it made it’s way to SC. We were going to cleanse, be zen and probably find way more inner peace after all that flax, bee pollen and kale, we just KNEW it. Also, we were going to SO DO THIS TOGETHER.

The box arrived and we went through and made sure we knew which order to drink them in, even grabbed a sharpie and numbered the bottles to be 100% true to our little 3 days of partnered health bliss.

The following, my friends, is what ensued.

Day 1

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Look how cute and unassuming we are. We slept in super late– like almost 11, which in my life is UNHEARD of and also pushed us like 5 further hours into the day’s eating schedule than a typical day in my life… We drank juice every two hours, comparing how each tasted (“the almond milk based one is SUPER yum, the beet based one, NOT SO MUCH, ick can you taste all that celery? High five babe, we’re awesome!”). We watched movies and then laid in the grass and listened to music on shared earbuds. It was good to be lazy and a little hungry, but in it together. I mean, Sundays are for lying around anyway. In the evening, we packed up my juices so I could take them home– and I briefly thought, “ick, this won’t be as fun without you right here and all the laying around while the kids are at their Dad’s…” But we totally gave each other a fist bump and a “YOU GOT THIS TEAM!” and I went on my merry way. I went to bed a little hungry but not totally starving and super into the fact that we were on a shared mission. I love a good cause.

Day 2

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Day 2 started off with optimism and joy, partially because I had weighed myself and was down FOUR ENTIRE POUNDS. I threw on my kicky unicorn and pegasus dress with glee in my heart, packed my little lunch cooler and bounded to work like a toddler with a new toy. And then I got to work where I realized I was a little hungry. Ok, a lot hungry. And then I drank the second juice of the day, which is where the supportive text messaging became key because of what immediately followed.

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I won’t go into further detail, but let’s just say that if you are going to engage in a juice cleanse with a partner, be very, very sure you are comfortable with your bodily functions. I mean, we happen to share a love of middle school humor, so it worked out, but consider yourself warned if, perhaps, you have a more sensitive constitution than I.

I made it through the work day, though briefly debated whether I should be driving a car when I felt so NOT ME– kind of like floating, but also very focused, which is an odd combination– and made it home in time to totally crash on the couch. I could not work out or do much, but I did walk the dog with what energy remained… and then I got hangry. Like, I was not a nice human. It was quick, the snap, and I decided F ALL THIS I NEED AN EGG. So I made an egg. And by egg, I mean an egg sandwich cause what is an egg if not smushed in a hug between a whole wheat bagel and a piece of cheddar cheese.

What’s interesting is that it tasted good, but not like as GOOD as I thought it would. The cleanse definitely did something to my cravings and desire for heavy food. Ok, fine.

I went to bed not starving and ready to make it through the final day.

Day 3

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My little egg-venture included a half pound regained– touche juice cleanse. Day 3 brought more of a sense of realism, that in fact, our brains require more than 350 calories per day to function effectively and I decided to throw on some lipstick to mask the fact that I was likely becoming anaemic. But, away I went to work, this time armed with an emergency banana and a PB & J, just in case. What I will say, is that today felt less bad. My body was certainly adjusting and there were fewer cravings. I felt a little more able to concentrate and knowing it was the last day helped. That didn’t stop me from being a little bit grumpy about the whole affair, though more informed about what my day would possibly hold.

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Tomorrow morning, I will wake up and do a final weigh-in. My guess is that the tacos I am about to eat for dinner will probably put back on the entire 3.5 lbs I lost. Also, this might be the exact wrong life choice to make immediately following a cleanse, but like I said, I am a RIDE OR DIE type gal, and when it’s Taco Tuesday, you go all in.

Overall, on the plus side, I feel like my skin and eyes look brighter (could be the near-starvation, hard to tell), it was way fun to do this with a buddy, and I do think it re-wired my cravings for sugar and carbs a bit.

The downside is that I did not get to go to spin class (which makes me feel badass) nor enjoy ice cream for dessert with my boys last night, which really, in the grand scheme of life, is what it’s about.

Would I do it again? Maybe.

Right now? Tacos, por favor!

 

 

 

Missing, please call if found: My Words

screen-shot-2017-02-19-at-2-41-58-pmThere are literally 80,000 other words I am supposed to be writing right now. I am sitting on Jeff’s back patio, silently perched in the sun on a gorgeous Charleston day; no kids, no noise, just the breeze and passing neighbors. And I am stuck. I have words, I have thoughts, about 60 gajillion of them but none the outline or prose I am supposed to be writing. Is this how it’s going to be until this book is finally birthed? It takes 40 weeks to create a human (41.5 if you are a child of mine, but who’s counting and no worries, I’ll only hold it over your head for the next 40 years or so til we’re cool on that one) and that is painful and slow and uncomfortable and so I get it. I am spinning an entire world that I hope matters to other people; a world that currently only exists between the folds of my overactive brain.

But dammit writing, why are you such a fickle lover? When I want you, you are NO WHERE and when you want ME, I have to drop ALL THE OTHER things and just be with you.

I don’t have an answer to this question but I have solid hunches.

First, it’s hard to write your story when the world is rudely, loudly falling to pieces. I am trying so hard to lean in to doing my part, small things on a daily basis, to chip away at the chaos that has befallen our country. I call representatives. I donate. I show up in love in my local community. I share articles, I follow Twitter feeds, I do the one small thing a day that’s texted to my phone. I cheer when my neighbor takes down his Trump flag (k, that one was just for me, but I’m all “HEY BOO, YOUR BUYER’S REMORSE IS SHOWING”). Does writing a book even MATTER right now? I think probably actually the answer is YES, because art is at stake. Freedom of speech is at stake. The very words I believe to be so precious are at stake.

Second, life is so hard with all of its logistics and needs and people who consistently want to be fed and clothed. I mean what IS that? Like, make your own mac cheese dammit. What’s that? You’re only 5? Right, cool. Noted. I constantly feel like I am pulled in a thousand directions with work and kids and a new relationship and bills to be paid, and a car that had to be replaced and a mysterious dripping water cover on the sidewalk in front of the house and soccer to be registered for and and and… and time to just BE. I have to make choices at every single turn about how I am going to use my time and energy. Every single actual moment. And sometimes writing is the thing and sometimes sitting on my ass on the couch and watching Dirty Dancing with Jeff while I recite the lines and he marvels at my ridiculousness is the thing. (Btw true story and sidenote: friends, that is a sign of a keeper if I ever saw one. Do not give up until you find someone willing to do this on a Saturday night with you.) I am not sure if that’s balance, but that’s life.

Third, I am scared. I don’t know if I know how to write a damn book. I am a good writer, I know that. I do. I can string word babies together and make people feel something. But I have no fucking clue about the CRAFT of writing. Which I guess I knew going in. And also, I pretty much blindly jump into the deep end of any actual pool that is put in front of me right? So why would writing be different? And this time I have fucking rad mentors who are NOT so impressed with me that they won’t tell me the truth but who are like, girlfriend you have something raw and talented here so press on. But what if I can’t? Flip side: what if I fucking CAN and this shit actually happens? I won’t know unless I try, but I am also supposed to be revising an outline right now and I keep staring at it like, “ok, do something, you! Rearrange thyself! Get to it!” It’s almost rude how I need to be the one to press the fucking keys.

And that might be the moral of the story right there, the crux of why I don’t wanna and why I must actually: I have to be the one to press the fucking keys. In all things. I could (un)happily sit on my ass and take no stands, write no words, fall for no one and create a little ordered world of simplicity for myself. But, we know that’s just not me. We know this girl must live in the deep end. I don’t half do anything and if I say I am going to write a damn book, I am going to #writethedamnbook.

I came over to the blog to bitch and moan a bit about how I have no words. But look there, I just threw down about 900 words that were just sitting at the tip of my tongue. So, no excuses. I know. I fucking know. Stop looking at me like that.

Write the damn book, Kate.

xo

Things I know today.

screen-shot-2017-01-27-at-8-06-30-pmIt’s only been a week since we swore in a new President and I literally feel like we now live in the upside down. If you’ve watched “Stranger Things,” you know. I mean, Winona Ryder doesn’t look so crazy anymore. I kinda feel like you might find me with a Christmas light alphabet strung up on the wall soon.

Everything I’ve known to be true, or assumed to be true, for 37 years has somehow come completely undone in several swift executive orders. Every time I think, “wait they couldn’t POSSIBLY…?” He does. And they do. People agree with him and do the thing. Like, they stand next to him and do not scream, or blink 3 times so we know to rescue them. How are they so fine?

I have a whole lotta CANNOT right now. Writing feels hard. Enjoying simple things feels hard. Patience feels hard. The world turned on its axis last Friday and I just feel like I can’t upright it. I feel so confused and entirely perplexed by humans at the moment.

I’ve sought out action in the form of calls to Senators, sharing scripts on FB. I’ve watched cute baby animal videos. I ordered a new pair of shoes. I ate perfect pasta at a beachside restaurant Tuesday.

That’s pretty much what I’ve got. Anyone else feeling me here?

So, while I sort of just want to sit here and eat chocolate and give no fucks, I am forcing myself into an exercise of identifying what I do know to prove to myself that I am not ready to curl into a ball like the possum/rolly polly hybrid creature I sort of feel like right now. When I’ve got my truth, I’m still standing.

Therefore, my list, in no particular order:

I love my children more than I ever thought it was humanly possible to love other living beings.

If you ask me out and I say no, I might come back a year later and say yes. And what follows will be kind of sweet and wonderful and all butterfly-ish.

I have a tribe of people who love me fiercely.

I am a complex human and so are you. We are going to make big mistakes with each other. And then learn. And then do more good. And more bad. And more good. For always.

My son would like me to marry a Kratt brother.

I cannot control anything, and probably that’s fine.

Even my best intentions turn out wrong sometimes and I have to understand and accept the consequences.

And try again. Always try again.

Sometimes I cannot find my creativity, so I need to walk away until it comes back.

So many people deeply care about equal rights, inclusion, safety, love. I am not alone.

Many well meaning people also get it wrong sometimes and even when they think they’re doing totally the right thing, it still alienates someone else.

We try again.

Christianity is being used as a weapon.

There’s a difference between saying “I am Christian” and “I am a Christian;” I prefer the former. I prefer to read it as a verb.

On marching: white women in pink hats garner selfies; people with darker skin garner riot gear.

I am so proud of all of my friends who marched.

I completely understand the many women who have told me they purposefully abstained.

I invite open conversation when I make myself vulnerable.

I have a story to write. I have words to share. I will bring them to life.

Art will not die.

Park rangers turn out to be the rogue heroes when the zombie apocalypse arrives.

That’s what I know, folks. 

How about you? Leave me a comment with what YOU know to be true today. Onward.

Thankful

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Sometimes the divine (energy, God, healing, light, insert your word) shows up when you need to see it most. I just stopped in to say that I believe in guardian angels today. We’re all just one footstep away from heartbreak of the worst kind and I am grateful we avoided that today. Stuff is just that- STUFF that can be replaced. I am looking for active, irreplaceable connection and am so thankful for my tribe, my children, an open heart and new beginnings.

Love your people well, know WHO your people are and be fierce in your commitment to them.

And so, we begin: write your damn book.

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Ann signing my (her) book. No big deal. I’m fine. It’s fine.

So, we know I am a proponent of “do the thing.” And I’ve done many such things in the last few years like become a runner, get a major role in a musical, speak my truth in very public forums, file for divorce and bear the brunt of that pain…

And in years prior to be honest. I traveled to far flung places, got malaria, traveled some more, dated wonderful and horrible men, quit my job and moved to Guatemala (cause why not), got married and started on the whirlwind adventure that brings us to today.

We know this gal’s got no regrets. 99 probs (eleventy million actually) and regret most definitely ain’t one.

If it’s in your heart, you have to go for it. Like, we do actually only get this one shot on this go-round, so what the fuck are you waiting for? Sometimes we forget that we have options.

This summer, while I was on my grown-up time out and literally doing NOTHING except taking care of myself, having long lunches, languid afternoons and dating someone I really shouldn’t have been (but OH it was fun… until it wasn’t)… I read a book (I Like You Just Fine When You’re Not Around) by an author I had Twitter stalked and sort of started crushing on from afar, Ann Garvin.

She tweeted weird shit like I do, seemed hilarious and scattered in the right ways, loves her dog more than humans, is a single mama, and also did Listen to Your Mother. Clearly meant to be; she just didn’t know it yet.

She has this writing class thing and I was all, huh, her book was fabulous and people keep telling ME to write a book and I typically average one crazy bucket list item a year, so why not. Why the actual fuck not.

K, it was maybe more deliberate than all that and I did check like my budget and travel schedule and really do some soul searching on said book and my ability and commitment to it … but like, kind of also? Why the actual fuck not.

So last weekend I went to the Northern Tundra Many Miles Away Where Layers are Required for Survival. Also known as: Chicago. First, yes it was really fucking cold. 6 degrees is so very few degrees, really. But I bravely bundled up and did the thing.

I had NO IDEA what to expect when I walked into what is actually the most gorgeous loft I’ve ever seen. Complete with exposed brick, a hidden spiral staircase lit with fairy lights, a giant disco ball in the main space, comfy couches, nooks and crannies to write in and a long, serious table beneath a twinkly, perfect chandelier. In short: writer’s paradise. Also, copious amounts of coffee all day and wine appeared regularly at 5 o’clock. I mean, really, what is this place and can I live here for all the days?

And I sort of thought I’d be like “hi nice to meet you weird writer types” and then peace out to my own corner or dinner plans or SOMEthing, but we never left because we were all just so THERE. Ann and her Fifth Semester partner Erin Celello are literally the dreamiest, funniest, friendliest, and smartest people– and they created a space so safe that when people read their word babies out loud for the very first time, you could feel them softly landing in front of each of us. We received them with care– but we also pulled those suckers apart and helped each other be BETTER in doing so.

Friends, I do not know what this journey will bring (probably my damn book cause Ann is also a little terrifying and I wouldn’t dare miss a deadline of hers), but I can say that the sun rose and fell and rose and fell for 3 days and I never even noticed the passage of time because I was so IN. I wasn’t bored, I wasn’t over it, I wasn’t trapped; I was in the zone. In a zone that made sense to me. Finally.

Of course, I was all “I’m not a writer, no YOU’RE a writer, no YOU are” cause I couldn’t possibly accept a comment or a proud title gracefully… but I’m learning and when I shakily read my first scene, people were like GIRL YES YOU ARE A WRITER. So I am trying to believe them.

Just like running, which is one foot in front of the other, writing is one word, one decision, one vision, one idea in front of the other. So, we begin.

 

No ragrets.

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Have you seen pics of tattoos that absolutely suck? Where you are just like DUDE what the fuck were you thinking and also, they make you sign that paper that says you haven’t done any drugs in the last few hours and like… were you sure? Cause that seems like a fairly radical and awful choice. Except also, who is the asshat who you PAID to do that to your body? I mean, we spell check tweets for fuck’s sake, likely you should check permanent ink being seared into your flesh.

(Examples here, cause I am nice. #22 actually made me shed a tear.)

Note: Sometimes I get ranty. Bear with me, there’s a point. Very often reached by tangential muttering followed by whimsical musing and made up words like “feelings-y”– but usually, I get there. 

So, also today, I checked my horoscope for the year 2017 (cause at this point, a gal needs something to hang on to). It’s SUPER awesome and basically everything’s gonna rock. Except. It said something about love and a past lover or a past life’s lover (which, btw, I can’t even really go there), coming BACK and I was like FUCK NO WHICH ONE.

No ragrets.

But.

I just don’t want to go backwards.

I am doing my very best cleansing, yogic breathing in my most valiant attempts to just move on. To move away from the patterns and people and loves and losses of the past several years. I am open and ready and willing… except please actually none of you come back.

Unless Kit Harrington and I were star-crossed lovers during the Revolutionary War and he died in my arms in battle, leaning into my corseted bosom, my tear streaked face the last earthly sight he gazed upon… I digress.

When I think about it, I have spent the last 15 years or so MOVING ON. Falling for people, loving them, breaking up with them, getting over them, recycling them one or two times, then onto the next. It’s a pattern and I have very, very seldom been alone. I am a serial monogamer through and through.

My friend at works says “Kate, you don’t do casual.” And I of course scoff and guffaw and pffffff in her face; but she’s not wrong.

I am a strictly “better to have loved and lost” kinda girl. I love falling in love. I love the drama. The angst. The butterflies. Even the break up a bit. It’s fun to hang on to the pure hatred for a while. The plots to avenge my honor. Imagining the public ways you will suffer your comeuppance.

Also, I love humans. I love getting to know what makes you tick. Imagining the possibilities of us. Trying you on for size. I’ve been with artists, teachers, mechanics, philosophers, dreamers, business-types, a DJ; I just love finding out who I am next to you. It’s like being freaking Margaret Meade and I just want to observe you and absorb you and sit around your campfire for a bit while I take notes on your eating habits.

I never said I was normal.

So as I reflect on a somewhat lonely New Years weekend, while gleefully hanging on to shreds of hatred toward my most recent ex, whose charming smile and stupid witty sense of humor sucked me right in and then SPIT ME OUT (if you are reading this I am STILL SO MAD AT YOU)–but hear me on this:  I have NO RAGRETS. I would not trade a moment of any of it.

Allow me to explain.

At the deepest, most primal level, my sweet boys are the exact children I was meant to mother. I mean, like a mother lion who swats away feisty little cubs with her strong mama-lion paws, I cannot EVEN at times, but they are perfectly mine. Their father continues to be an asshat, but he gave me these two utterly incredible human beings. And if I had never fallen in love with and married that asshat, I would not have the two greatest loves of my life.

So if I regret him? By proxy, I regret them. And that is not possible. Not even the tiniest bit.

No ragrets.

Sidenote: as an aspiring novelist, you better believe your sweet cheeks EACH AND EVERY ONE OF YOU FOOLS is gonna be in my book. You’re gonna be able to say you knew me when, but also that you’re Dick from page 67 who got snuffed by the killer clown.

I said I didn’t have REGRETS, not that I didn’t enjoy REVENGE served ice cold with a twist of lime.

Peace loves.

 

 

Welcome.

Welcome.

To everything there is a season. 

Be the change.

In the event of an emergency, put your oxygen mask on first before helping those around you.

Sometimes, we need to change it up folks. My beautiful blog, documenting years of early mommy-hood, a small brush with cancer, the end of a marriage and the beginning of a ME seems like a distant place I need to gently tuck in for a long winter’s nap.

I love that blog. I stand by every word I wrote on that blog. But today? Today mama needs a new pair of shoes.

Fucking stilettos y’all.

Today, I am becoming new.

Today, we are facing down a new year with a new administration and a new (terrifying) world order.

Today, I am shutting my damn mouth and learning to listen.

Today, I am a mommy, but I am also a ME.

Today, I am a writer.

Today, I am a runner.

Today, I am a single woman learning how to date again.

Today, I honor you for just being you.

Today, I will strip down my white privilege and freaking listen.

Today, I am a feminist.

Today, I will check myself for condescension.

Today, I will be wrong.

Today, I will be right.

Today, I will WRITE.