Thursday, June 18, 2009

An awesome blog to check out!

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Baby Lewis

Hey everyone. It is probably going to be common knowledge by the time I post this news on my blog but I am pregnant with my first baby. Anthony and I are going to be parents! We are so excited and can't wait for all of the new steps that life has to offer. I found out on Tuesday morning and went to see the doctor yesterday to confirm. She approximated that I am about 9 weeks pregnant right now. My first OBGYN appointment is on Tuesday June 23rd and that is when the ball will start rolling. I am very excited and would very much appreciate your prayers through the pregnancy. We have started a pregnancy/baby Lewis blog so please become a follower of it and keep up on all of the changes and news of Baby Lewis! :) It is located at...

Baby Lewis En Route!

Love Ya'll!

Saturday, June 13, 2009


Tonight I was up way too late and reading on Psychology Today and found an article about failure. I decided to read it since that word alone sparks fear in me. The article was about the strategies that we can use as people to not "die" in a sense when we fail at something. I have always been really sensitive to failure. This stems a multitude of areas like a dinner that doesn't taste so good, a grade that was lower than I would have liked, a friendship having a moment of discord, a disagreement with my husband, and more personal things like not losing weight fast enough or putting weight back on.

As I read the article, it mentioned that failure really serves a valid purpose in our lives. It teaches us so much. I would completely agree with this although the pain that comes with failure to me always seems to over shadow the idea of growth for the moment. I can think of a huge failure in my life right off the top of my head that truly taught me so much. I was in a relationship a few years before meeting Anthony for 6 years. It was such a chaotic relationship that I really don't know if it was mostly good or mostly bad. There were certainly good times and my ex fiace was actually a very good man.

In saying that, we both made a ton of mistakes and inevitably we failed at keeping the relationship strong and happy. In my heart for years after the breakup (I was the one who left) I felt like a big failure. I felt I had failed at being a good girlfriend, failed at loving another person, failed at being loved, and failed him mostly. It was incredibly painful and it took me 2 years to get to a place where I could legitimately realize that I wasn't doomed to failure within a relationship. Even in the first year or so of dating Anthony, I still felt like any minute I would blow it.

Another area that really crossed my mind when I started thinking about failure was my weight loss journey. I lost a total of 130+ pounds a few years ago. I was really getting to a place where health was of optimum importance. I would go to the beach every day and run and then go to 24 hour fitness (my awesome gym) and work out again. I have ALWAYS loved to eat so that is just something that I have to accept that I have to work out more. I didn't really mind because I had SUCCEEDED in developing a habit of exericse. Well, then I met my beautiful now husband and started attending Graduate School and the gym and beach were a thing of the past and over 3 years I put back on 70 of those pounds. When I graduated last month, I got on the scale and felt like a big FAT failure.

I do not give myself a lot of heat about weight. I never have. I have always felt like I had a lot to offer the world and that my confidence and attractiveness had nothing to do with the number on the scale or the tag on my jeans but I have also always valued sports and being healthy and I got to a point in Grad School where I was neither atheletic or healthy anymore. I also have always known that given my family background I would be a woman who is shaped like..well a woman. I would have curves in the back and front and would most likely have a little more meat on the bones. That has never bothered me and more than excites my husband. There is also a part of me that knows that there is an issue when your health is bad due to it and there has to be a healthy weight for me at 5'1."

In saying that, I wanted to use some of the advice of the article I read tonight in psychology today to try to work on my aspect of failure and kind of bounce back from these two big failures. The breakup was over 5 years ago and I have learned a lot since then about being a loving person, loving another person, and obviously have married the man of my dreams so I am getting there on that topic. There is the other one to think about though. I am constantly faced with daily failure in this area when I am lazy and don't head to the gym even though I have paid for a 3 year membership.

I need to work on my image of failure. This failure is keeping me in a failing position. Any ideas how to get myself out of the failure funk?

Friday, June 12, 2009

Learning my passions and talents

I love that parable in the bible about the man who gave his servants a certain amount of talents and they were each given a choice of how to use those talents (which was an amount of money in the bible). The basic premise of the story if you haven't read it, is that there were three servants and the master gave one servant 5 talents, one servant 2 talents and the last servant he gave 1 talent. The first two servants did the same thing with their talents, they put them to work (invested) and doubled their money. The third guy buried his and did not do anything with it.

The gist of the story is that the servants who invested their talents and came up with more were told by the master to join in their master's bounty and that since they were trusted with little, they would be trusted with much. The third servant was scolded because he did not even put the talent into the bank to gain interest. Just wasn't a smart decision on his part. I was thinking about this parable and how God is molding me these days.

I feel blessed to have a lot of passion in me and quite a few talents. I am not especially good at most things but I am decently good at a lot of things. I can organize well, I deal well with people and their problems (hence the whole therapist thing), I am a great friend after many years of learning how, I can cook very well, I budget my household down to the penny, I love people with everything I have, and there are many others that I am proud of.

I have seen lately that God has really called me to be trusted with little. I have learned how to really be grateful for every dollar he gives our house. I have learned to use coupons and budget our food and even get a lot of items for free. I have learned to cook well with fresh products so as not to waste money on fast food or processed foods, I have learned to appreciate the love and romance of a beautiful marriage instead of expensive gifts and distracting dates. I have learned the comfort of my own home and entertaining myself. I have learned to do my hobbies with just as much passion as I used to shop for purses and shoes. I have learned to be content where I am and invest my talents in such a way that will bring glory to my master so I can share in his bounty. I am feeling so blessed these days and also feel that God is trusting me now with little and I am claiming his promises to trust me with much!

What are your talents?

Monday, June 08, 2009

My new passion

So I have almost been out of school for a whole month. In that month, I have been able to enjoy some of the joys of being a wife that I did not get to enjoy so much while in school. Some of the joys I made time for, if you know what I mean! (wink wink) Yes, I know, I am inappropriate. Anyway, I am now beginning to enjoy more of the domestic things that I really love. I know that most people don't view me as very domestic and that's fine, you aren't my husband and his opinion is really the only one that counts in that domain, no offense. As much as I have tried to fight my femininity in the past, Anthony has always made me able to embrace it. I super love to be the nurturer and really enjoy cooking for my husband. I have really started to take so much interest in the Food Network and started to try new recipes and learn how to cook different kinds of food.

I grew up in a house with a mama who could seriously cook but we basically had the same 20 ish recipes every month. I was determined to be different than that in my house and it certainly is easy to get into a dinner rut. I have been really focusing lately on my cooking and it honestly comes really easy to me. I feel it is very therapeutic for me to create something that is delicious. Also, this is an issue of health and I enjoy not eating out but really enjoying our food and having more quality ingredients.

Another thing I am really enjoying is managing the money and trying to find deals for our weekly groceries and things. I am very good at saving money and being thrifty and often get a lot of things at our house for free or very cheap due to my intense use of coupons. I am finding a lot of pride in these things in my home. Anthony is always very proud to see how far I can make our grocery money and household supply money go. I am learning this is an amazing talent to have and it's really helping with where Anthony and I are right now in our finances.

So, tonight I made an awesome dinner of creamy cheddar soup (homemade), an iceberg wedge salad with tomato, bacon, green onion, blue cheese crumbles, and blue cheese dressing, and nice crusty french bread. It was delicious. Also, today I did my grocery shopping and ended up getting many things free or very cheap and am able to make gourmet dinners for 2! :) I am feeling pretty good about this wife stuff. I love it!

Saturday, June 06, 2009

Easily annoyed or justified?

Today I was really made aware of my annoyances in the world. I am not sure if I am super sensitive today or more analytical about those annoyances. I am not in a bad mood by any means but something was really making me aware of the things that really bug me. I am sure there are way more than these but I thought throw them out there and see if any of you relate so here they are....

I am annoyed by people who break driving rules. Ok, I am annoyed by people who break rules period. I am one of the few people that I know who believes in keeping order and following rules. I have always felt that most rules are put in action to provide protection and order. Maybe that sounds "goody two shoes" but I don't care, it's who I am. I have a unfaltering desire to correct people when I see them breaking rules but I never do. A couple of examples are people who still hold their phone to their ear and drive, who cross a double yellow line to get in somewhere just 5 seconds earlier than they would have if they went up to an entrance, and when people park in a no-parking zone in my apartment complex causing me to not be able to get out of my space or get into my space.

I could talk about rules being disobeyed all day long. Anthony calls me "the ethics police" because I also do not like when people are unethical. I hate to see someone sneak into a movie, not return extra change they have received from the cashier, or steal cable, utilties, or internet use from their neighbors. I think this comes from an annoyance of paying my bills and struggling to do so while others disregard that. I should note here that I have friends who do some or all of these things and it doesn't change my love for them but for me, it's a no go and I do not participate.

I also noticed today that I really don't like when you are in a small room with someone and they are smoking and they do not put it out or leave the room out of respect. I at least feel that they should check with you if you are ok with the smoking since it's your lungs that are being damaged. This comes from me doing my laundry the other day in our apartment complex facility. There is one at the end of each hall so the room is only big enough for 2 washers and 2 dryers and a lady came in smoking a cigarette and folded her clothes while smoking which means not only did I have to breathe in her nonsense but my clothes that were just washed also had to. Annoying!!!

Oh man, you thought I was done...nope. Also, I hate when people go through the drive through and ask a billion questions that are clearly stated on the menu. Example, today when I was going for some breakfast this woman in front of me had to be told the flavors of syrup available for her coffee no less than three times even when they were boldly displayed on the lit up screen. I wanted to get out of my car and slap her in the face. Here's the deal lady, if you don't know the menu and you can't read it in like 2 minutes, GO IN THE STORE!

Then it gets better, I don't like when companies have to put down another company to make themselves feel better about their sub par performance. Example, today I heard a commercial from a reputable cable company whom shall not be named (cough Time Warner) that had to put down another reputable cable company that not only provides superior service but also better workers and more options and luxuries. I also will not mention that company's name (cough AT&T) My husband works there and for some reason when I hear these catty commercials I tend to feel they are putting him down and I get mad. Yes, it's silly I agree.

Oh and here's another one, so I have a neighbor who has a dog. I do not have a dog for about a million reasons. Namely because I don't like dog pee and poop. I don't want to have my furniture and/or carpet soiled by a dog. I have a dirt square that California people call a yard and until I have something that Indiana people would consider a yard, I will not have a dog. The neighbor's said dog, came into my house tonight uninvited when they opened their door without the little beast on a leash and he peed on my carpet. Yes, directly on my carpet. Which may I add, I just stepped in.

Today I feel Charlie Brown...I just want to yell GOOD GRIEF! I have decided that half the population is stupid and the other half are just plain inconsiderate. Where does this leave me you ask? I am hoping neither but we shall see.

I feel like these gripe fests are kinda fun. Give me a few of yours if you are willing!

Thursday, June 04, 2009

Support in numbers

Things have been pretty hectic lately with graduating, trying to find employment, and holding together the house while finances are an issue. In that quest to hold everything together I have really noticed that when you ask for help and support, you truly get it. I really appreciated the other day when I blogged about my husband's moods and how they affect me when everyone let me know where they were with it. Some wrote about how they understood because their husband's were going through similar moods and I really appreciated when people could help me understand where Anthony is right now.

Here is a little more into the issue. Anthony has been working for AT&T for about 2 and 1/2 years. He loves his job in that he enjoys making his customers happy and seems to get fulfillout out of the actual work. The politics of work are not so exciting for him. He came into the company when U-verse (their new television service) was not even on the market yet. He was on a temporary contract since they did not know if the sevice would work out. He did not care as it was the first job he had ever had that really fulfilled him while also paying well. We all look for that combination.

Just about 6 months ago things started to get very difficult. Their contract ended and they were working for a permanent contract and every 5 minutes it seems they threaten to take away benefits, change the job description to require more of the workers yet not pay them any more for their work, and then the guys talk about striking. In this economy that sounds like a nightmare to us. Not to mention I just graduated and it takes a little more time to start to be a therapist than people would think. We require a number from the Board of Behavioral Sciences to even be able to make money at it and that all requires a lot of filing of paperwork...Back to Anthony.

So as the company beared down and started requiring all of these nonsensical things from the workers it started to make Anthony have a lot of anxiety. He does great work there and even has gotten several calls from customers telling managment how wonderful he was to them. I am very proud of Anthony for always doing quality work. Sadly, the company seems to devalue the quality work and overvalue the quickness of work. If you want to do your job well, you can't be in and out of a customer's house. Every single house is wired differently and to make sure they have the best television service possible, you have to do a quality job. Every month the productivity numbers get harder and harder to meet without doing a crappy job.

This is not what we believe that God wants from us as a people. We are both very set on doing the best job we can do and honoring God with our work. Anthony feels like he is scolded on a daily basis for doing quality work and leading with his personality. I am saddened that he has to go through this every single day. It certainly comes home with him too as I am the one person who affirms him for doing a good job and pleasing his customers. My heart is in that as I am therapist and my job is entirely about people.

All of that to say, it's been hard for me to watch him be in agony some days for doing what he feels God wants him to do and not receive any affirmation about it at work. I really appreciate the input everyone gave me as it certainly made me feel more normal as a wife and helped me look over the issue well and respond to Anthony very well. I love that guy and really want him to have fulfillment in all he does. I forget sometimes that I can't save him from what the world really is. He still really likes his job and enjoys the people he works with so I am praying that soon...that will pay off for him.

Anyway, thanks for reading the new installment on this issue...I will try to keep everyone posted on what I learn through this.

Tuesday, June 02, 2009

Marriage and moods

Lately I have been learning a very hard lesson and I am not sure what exactly to do with it. Today I went to therapy and discussed it for 50 minutes and it still did not seem clear. This is something that I guess I probably knew about marriage but lately has seemed to be more and more real to me. Every time either Anthony and I have a bad day, it ruins the other person's day. Lately life has been pretty difficult with financial concerns, job concerns, family frustrations, and the like and it really shows in the way our home runs. I notice that the moods are really contagious and it is incredibly hard to stay in a good mood if your husband or wife is in a bad mood. When something bothers Anthony it really bothers me too.

This has started to cause some serious problems for me. Not in how much I love Anthony or even how happy I am in the marriage but I have noticed it makes me lose sleep. I have had a hard time lately getting to sleep and staying asleep and I think that I am really worried about Anthony's happiness in life. We both have such a fantastic time together when it's his day off but as soon as he is back to work, I notice his level of happiness is drastically different and I feel so sad and concerned.

It's so weird for me to feel this way because I deal with people's problems for a living and yet, it is so different when it's the man you love. I am used to listening to people for 50 minutes and then walking away and being able to let go of their stuff and get back to engaging in my own life. Anthony is my own life and his happiness is paramount to mine. Anyone that has been married for a while...check in on this and let me know if this is something you deal with and how do you balance your own contentment in life and your mate's lack of contentment or vice versa. It's a really difficult balance when it is not the marriage that is having difficulties. I want Anthony to find happiness in his own identity and profession as well. I am going to keep praying for answers but I would really appreciate any feedback you all have!