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Storm has passed

I am coming up upon my two year anniversary in Ohio. As always the time has flown and yet it seems like its been decades.

What a couple of year’s it has been. Full of trials, tribulations, craziness, and chaos. It’s also been full of laughter,  friends, love, and spending copious amounts of glorious time with my nephews making memories that last a lifetime.

I do not regret my time here. I have met amazing people that will be in my life, in some capacity, forever. I have also come face to face with a few of my worst nightmares, things I never thought I could survive, and I did.

When I moved here, I didn’t really understand why. I knew I wanted to be closer to my nephews. I also knew deep in my gut this was the right decision. And it was. God had things to show me about my family and myself. I didn’t pass all the tests that he had for me, I found new spots in my heart that needed to be softened and molded. In the end, though, I know better who I am and what I’m not.

I also got the chance to help support my Aunt through breast cancer. I got the opportunity to help my brother finish college, finally. I got to watch my nephews as my sister-in-law went back to work. I got to spend time with my grandmother. I got to do many things I couldn’t from CA.

When God gave me the verse two years ago that he wanted to give me immeasurably more than all I could ask for, I thought it would look really different. I was imagining the man of my dreams, a great job, you know the usual wishes. Instead he brought truth and light to the darkest places of our family. He came to bring healing and redemption, if we wanted it. These past two years have been ones of incredible growth in every capacity.  I am free from many things that tethered me to my past.

God freed me to move forward. In his infinite wisdom he gave me what I needed, not what I asked for.  Just as I knew when it was time to come here I have accepted that its time to leave. I need to move on with my life and it is not here in Ohio.

For now my plan is to move back to CA. I don’t expect things to be the same, but I am going back to the family I chose for myself. The friends that have been so incredibly supportive. I’m going back to the pace of life where I can thrive. The vitamin D I need to live.

I feel good about the decision. I feel good about making a decision. I’m going to move forward with this, staying open to new possibilities and new places.

I think the decision to leave is the most important one.


Candy-Coated Future?

One of the unexpected joys of being here in Ohio has been my re-acquaintance with baking and my introduction to chocolate and candy making. I love it. It brings me much joy. I love discovering new flavors. I enjoy learning new techniques. I am digging the beauty and science behind these delicious treats.

Who knew when my dad bought a chocolate factory that I would find a piece of me I forgot about and a new way to express my creativity.

In efforts to explore this new found passion I, of course, want to go to culinary school, become a pastry chef and comeback to start a new career. That’s how my brain works, be trained, become an expert, then attempt it. It’s all part of my firstborn, control freak nature.

However, I’m kind of already in the deep-end learning how to swim. Yet, I still want to take more classes to learn about the science of chocolatiering and candy-making. So much to know about chemistry, additives, flavors, preservatives, tempering, stages of boiling, oh my. But just the thought of it makes me little kid happy.

On the other hand, I am not happy in Ohio. I don’t fit in here. I miss my friends. I miss my small group. I miss my church. I miss the ocean. I miss the weather. I miss the life I used to live. I miss the independence. I miss …. the list is endless.

So how do I balance the two? I want to go back to CA. When I’m there I’m healthier in many ways – emotionally, spiritually, financially, physically. But that’s because I had a life, a job, friends, and therapy. LOL. Yet the one downside is, I don’t want to go back to an office. I don’t want a 9-5 job. I don’t want to go back to paper-pushing middle management.

UGH. So that is my dilemma. In Ohio I have the opportunity to pursue a new passion and still have a place to live. My nephews are also here. But in California I have a life. Difficult decisions.

I’m kind of on a time line with this because there are two classes I would like to take that start on Tuesday. Yea, you know. Nothing like the last minute.

Granted I know I could take the class later if I wanted to, but still. I want to make a decision in the next five minutes. I feel like I’ve been standing still for two years. Not really. But it feels like it.

Something to think about.

Musings on 2009

2009 was a hard year. It was full of change.

“People are always saying that change is a good thing. All they are really saying is something you didn’t want to happen at all, is happening.” – Kathleen Kelly, You’ve Got Mail (1998). I turned on the tv to this movie and this exact quote  as I started writing this post, so I had to include it.

It was my second year in Ohio, which saw the separation and divorce of my parents. So we have all been muddling through, finding strength we didn’t know we had and learning a new way to live as a family. The road has not been smooth and it’s not over. We have a lot healing to do, the forging of new pathways and connections with each other and others.

But this year was also about more than “Le Divorce.” I traveled, saw friends, and got more into chocolate making finding my own flavors and blends. I also got to spend loads of time with my nephews and take them on day trips. They are my continual delight and joy.

Here’s a brief rundown of the year:

Feb – Went to Chicago to visit my favorite cousin, Jojo. We did a whirlwind tour of Chicago including a trip to Millenium Park to see designs by Frank Gehry. My favorite part was all of the time we got to spend talking. He is more like a brother than a cousin. I adore him!

Mar – Returned to CA for two weeks to gain sanity, perspective and a time to be with my support system, the friends that are my family. I went to all my favorite places and saw all of my favorite people. It was amazingly wonderful.

Apr – Started a podcast with my brother called The Mike and Marti Show. ( Our change to spend time together, discuss our issues and explore topics like spirituality, the church, family, purpose, and anything else we find interesting with acerbic wit.

May – Finally saw Grease on the big screen and in my pajamas.

June – My second summer with my nephews

July – Discovered my favorite Aunt has cancer and saw her exhibit true strength, character, integrity and perseverance.

Dec – Had a wonderful 35th birthday!

I look forward to 2010 with expectation and wonder, hoping for the best!

Trying to Settle Down

Here I am in my first full day in CA and I’m like a mexican jumping bean. I can’t sit still. I can’t formulate a complete thought. I feel like I have ADD. I wonder if its because I sat for 9 hours yesterday flying here, is it because I am finally in the sun and the vitamin D is amping me up or is it because I know I came here to think, process and make some life decisions? All plausible things I suppose.

But I’m kind of panicking. I’m worried I won’t get to see everyone I want to see. I’m worried that the time will go by too fast. I’m scared about going back to Ohio. I’m afraid I’ll miss something. UGH. Drama. I need to just relax.

Hopefully tonight we’ll go down to the ocean and grab some dinner. I need the waves to drown out my own thoughts.

Time Away

To get away from all the insanity that is my life right now, I am heading west young man.

For the next two weeks I will be broadcasting directly from Southern California. I can’t wait. I need to see my peeps, the beach and eat delicious food. It’s gonna be awesome.

I am so grateful for this time. I am trying not too overplan it, just be flexible and schedule lots of downtime to think, write, take pictures and just be still. We’ll see how it goes.