Roller Coasters Everywhere…

This semester has felt like a roller coaster.

I feel like I’m screaming and it’s changing nothing. I know eventually it will stop, but I don’t know when. But I should stop screaming soon enough.

I’ve had some pretty high highs and even lower lows. I just hope I can look back on this time and feel okay with the time I spent.

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Roller Coasters Everywhere…

NSTA with Nate

Spending the day in Philly with my Science Methods class, specifically my classmate Nate. I’m LOVING it so far!!

I expected the exhibitor hall to be overwhelming, but I love connecting and networking with so many different people. The sessions I’ve attended so far has been great.

Nate said he didn’t know what to expect but is excited to “meet geeky science educators” like himself and he’s astounded with the amount of resources available for every subject imaginable.

Excited for the rest of the day and will update tonight!

Making progress today, are you?

NSTA with Nate

Back to the Grind

Hello imaginary audience who exists only in my head.
Not that any of you care where I was, but after 40 hour work weeks you just don’t want to blog.

But I’m back at school and in this not-even-week, a lot has happened. I’ve met a few new friends that I really like and are too sweet.

I’m back in the gym and live every second. I feel so much stronger and better. Some of the new friends are on a similar journey so that support is nice.

The roommate is back from abroad so that’s an adjustment but I missed her.

I have a lot going on this semester as I prepare to student teach and ill try and update but no promises.

Been kinda vulnerable lately so I may channel that here….

Back to the Grind

An Open Letter to My Best Friend.

Dear Best Friend.
Thank you. The first day we truly met was move in day of freshman year, when you offered to help me move my bed because “they’re a little tricky”. I could have cried I was so happy in that moment, because somehow I knew you’d always be there to help and support me, which I’m so thankful to say has been the case.

Thank you for being part of my Dream Team, moving furniture with me after my mental breakdown about our third roommate having half the room. And when I was generally my great-grandmother’s kindred spirit, meaning I cannot stand when furniture is in one place too long.

Thank you for getting me into a club I would have been to scared to join on my own. I cannot express how thankful I am for the opportunities the club has given me, meaning what you have given me. Academically, socially and professionally, Reach Out has changed my life and impacted my worldview, and that’s all because of you.

Thank you for saving my life. When I got appendicitis, you convinced me to go to the health center and you put up with the side effects of my medications when I came back a week later, even when it meant spending too long in the bathroom and severe abdominal pain.

Thank you for making me meet new people, aka our late night guest. That experience was weird as hell, and no one else quite understands what that period meant to me. That experience also allowed me to be more confident in myself, no longer craving male approval.

Thank you for letting me experience first love again. Seeing you and your SO get together reminded me how special you are and that you deserve the world, and it added a whole other dimension to our relationship and I could finally have “lady conversations” with my friends like an adult and someone to go to that one building event with…. 😉

Thank you for being my safety valve. Sophomore year was rough and I remember one night in the study lounge you were able to talk me off the edge, and I’m not sure you knew my toes were already dangling off the side.

Thank you for keeping me company when I didn’t have a roommate. I don’t think you’ll ever know how soul-crushingly lonely I was, and how you made me feel worth my weight in gold. Speaking of weight….

Thank you for caring about my health. You are my gym buddy. You push me to go harder and longer. You let me appreciate the accomplishments I reach, even if it’s baby steps I’m celebrating. You remind me to be body positive and love my body for what it is and can do, not letting me hate and criticize what I lack.

Thank you for always snapping/texting back. You always make me smile, even when it’s just your face or something you made (because you’re so creative and I’m always so impressed of what you create).

Thank you for always reminding me of deadlines, due dates, assignment details and all that jazz, because lord knows I would lose my head if it wasn’t attached.

Thank you for our many adventures, because no scale is too small. Our room, campus, DC or the DR. Lets take on the world sometime 😉

Thank you for laughing with me, loving with me, learning, living, working, playing and more with me. Thank you for your unconditional support and love that makes you more than my best friend.

Thank you for being my sister.

Happy 21st birthday darling. Best wishes on the many happy years to come, and may they be filled with luck, love and laughter, always.

All my love,

Tori

An Open Letter to My Best Friend.

Yesterday Was Awesome…

Yesterday I went to Hersheypark with my fiance, and I had one of my biggest firsts ever.

I wore a bikini.

Never in my life did I think I would wear a bikini. I gained back all my weight that I had worked so hard to lose, so I am at my biggest weight, but I still wore a bikini.

When I went about purchasing it, my mom tried to make me feel uncomfortable about it, but I wanted the bikini so I could have a supportive top throughout the day.

I was self-conscious for a little bit, but you know what? I love myself, and my body, so I worked it and I felt amazing as I wore it throughout the park.

Well, I’m off to spend more time with the fiance, but I wanted to document this huge goal of confidence.

Yesterday Was Awesome…

Late Night Rambling Thoughts About Parents…

For their anniversary, my parents went on a mid-week vacation to spend time together. When they got back, my mom told me something I cannot stop thinking about:

While they were out at dinner, there was a pair of elderly women. They had to wait for a table because one of them needed a specific type of chair to be comfortably seated. After my parents ate, my dad proceeded to pay the women’s bill. Now this is not uncommon. I have seen my father pay for an elderly veteran of the Korean War’s meal at Wendy’s, and my dad didn’t have the easiest childhood, so he likes to give back when he can. But what I can’t get out of my head is his reply when my mother asked him what made him pay for these women. He wasn’t able to tell her at the time, knowing he would “lose it”, but later he told her. “She reminded me of my mother.”

My Granny passed just over nine years ago, and I know my dad misses her constantly. I miss her occasionally, but I was eleven when she passed, and we never spent as much time with his side of the family, but it was my first major loss. But I know this about my Granny. She was strong, courageous, and loved her children deeply. She worked several jobs but that was not enough, and the oldest few of her kids had to work, their money helping make ends meet. I guess I had the feeling when I was young that she didn’t have a lot of money, but you never REALLY think of that as a kid. I also kind of knew she was in rather poor health, but again, you don’t really think about that. I had the frame of mind that she was just old, and all old people were like that…..

But I can’t help but think about this woman my father paid for. She is most likely someone’s mother, too…  I think about my Granny and how similar they may have been. Did anyone pay for one of her meals in some of her last years because they were reminded of their mother? Will someone do this for my mom? Seeing her, will someone think of the woman that loved and supported them as best they could, and want to make their day easier? Will I be compelled to do this when my mother passes?

Growing up, I was always told I looked like my mom. Spitting image. I was into the things she was: cheerleading, dance, all that jazz. I never really feel like I’m my dad’s daughter. He’s just the guy that lived in my house and kinda helped try and raise me, even though he can’t tell you what I will or won’t eat. But I wish I saw more of him in me. That unconditional drive to succeed. To want to work for everything I have, then wanting to support other’s to help raise them up. Sure, now I’ve grown into his nose and cheeks, but I want to grow into his generosity and work ethic. Sure, he can’t communicate sometimes, but I know he’s got emotions that run deep to his core, just like I do. Except I make sure people know them.

My dad didn’t have much of a dad. I can’t put into words how much I appreciate my dad and everything he does. He didn’t grow up learning how to be a parent, between his failure of a father and my granny working so much. I know I don’t appreciate him as much as he deserves, but he’s amazing. Even if he wasn’t half of who I am, I would appreciate him for the person he is. I guess I really lucked out on the parents thing, huh…

But I still can’t help but imagine someone paying for my Granny’s meal because they reminded her of their mother….. I like to think it happened…. She deserved that…

Late Night Rambling Thoughts About Parents…

Summer Week One

Well, it’s been a busy week, but today was my first “real day” of summer. I spent early in the week preparing for or at a seminar I needed for school, so today was the first day to myself, and I enjoyed it.

I started running today. (again) I AM DOING C25K I DO NOT CARE WHAT MY BODY SAYS WE WILL DO IT! For those of you unfamiliar with the program, the first session has eight run-walk cycles after the five minute warm up, then a five minute cool down, both are walking. I got to the 6th walk, and dreaded the 7th run. I needed to pause, so I walked part of that one, and needed to sit before starting the 8th (pausing the program, of course). I’ll try session one again tomorrow, and every day until I can handle it. It probably didn’t help I ate before working out, which I never do. I’ll see what happens tomorrow.

I tracked my food today and spent a lot of time in the kitchen. My dad is home from work all week, so I made him lunch and we ate together. After my run and a daddy-daughter trip to Home Depot, I did a ton of meal prep, making lunches for the next week or so, plus dinner for the family this evening.

I am excited for what this summer brings. I want to stay motivated to keep on this way, but for that, I need exciting new recipes to try. Suggestions down below?

What’s your favorite healthy meal or snack, especially in the summer?

Summer Week One