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Saturday, April 8, 2017

How to Deal With Life's Bizarre Challenges

Me circa 1980 heading out to a dance class.
People ask me often how I deal with what has been bestowed upon me the last eight years; these bizarre challenges. After all, I loved...
  • To travel, 
  • To eat out, try new restaurants and ethnic dishes.
  • My glass of wine, 
  • Visiting family and friends.
  • My amazing social life. 
As a teen, my mom nicknamed me the happy wanderer.  I just loved to have fun and was always out and about doing just that..

  • I was a beach bum, if you consider a teen who worked and went to school full time a bum.  
  • I loved to dance. I was always in discos (that's what they were called back then). 
  • I would leave in the morning and spend the day on the beaches out east.
  • By nightfall, my parents would get a call saying I was in New York City for dinner and dancing with friends and family.

I had wonderful experiences into my early 40's, all through raising my kids as a single mom!  My kids were by my side having fun too! 

Things change.  (See Why Am I Not Posting Recipes? Because IT Has Started Again! and Oh, I Know, You Have Celiac Disease. Umm, No, Not Exactly)

The way I see it, things could be worse.My family has lived through worse. Sometimes bad things happen to good people and there's no reason for it.

Life hands each and every one of us challenges in one way or another.

Today, I'm a homebody.  Not by choice. It's a challenge to leave the house.

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Me with my daughter on a Disney cruise in 1999
Every year I took a vacation back in the day; several a year.  We did at least one "big" vacation yearly and may long weekend getaways.  I've been on about eight or nine cruises, I did adult only and family trips.

At the time, I was able to eat like a NORMAL person.  On my visits to Mexico, I loved tacos from the street stands.  Of course, I loved dining in the local restaurants too. For the record, I have NEVER gotten sick in Mexico.  If you take proper precaution, you won't.

I enjoyed taking my kids to the circus, sporting events, carnivals and taking a little taste of a pretzel I bought them to share.  Now, just smelling a hot, steaming pretzel will send me to the hospital with an allergy attack!

L - R top - 1. We took many trips to Disney as a family with and without friends.  2. Tulum, Mexico - many adult only adventures. 3. Several family trips to Niagara Falls with and without friends and family.
bottom - we took a camping trip to the Delaware Water Gap yearly with family and friends (adults and kids of all ages and dogs) 

l - r Toronto (we saw a Yankee game there too). We made several trips to Hershey Park.  Disney cruise (just me and my kids).  Several trips to Virginia Beach and Sesame Place. 

top - l - r  I've seen more Broadway shows than I can count, with and without kids, many trips to Splish Splash on Long Island (group package with friends and family that I organized yearly), several trips to Boston with family and friends.
middle - l - r  Boston Duck Tours with a friend and our kids, speedboats with the kids several times at Niagara Falls, many trips to Moosehead Lake, Maine (adults only and with kids)
bottom - l - r  Ft. Lauderdale adult trip, many trips into NYC at the holidays with friends and family (adults only and kids), many Long Island Ducks games (adults only and kids)

top - l - r  I took the kids to the circus many times (just us and with friends and family)  Many trips to The Bronx Zoo with friends and family.  bottom l - r  The Jones Beach breast cancer walk.  White water rafting in Maine.  

l - r   I practically lived on the beaches of The Hamptons (adults only and with kids), many trips to Adventure Land on Long Island,  log cabin in Maine (adults only)  several trips to Myrtle Beach with family and friends and many trips to Virginia Beach (not pictured) with family and friends. 
Above are just some of the many adventures.

I used to be able to "go" forever.  I worked full time, went back to school to earn my Bachelor's Degree and NEVER missed a thing with my kids.  I slept about four hours a night for six years, but luckily, back then, I didn't require much sleep.  I loved all the fun adventures I had and shared with my kids.

My issues have gotten to the point that I can't eat anything I haven't cooked myself.  No more restaurants, accepting dinner invitations from friends and family, tastes of hot pretzels, popcorn at the movies, etc.   I can no longer walk, run and breathe the way I used to.  Travel now is simply a dream.

I look at the positive side.  I GOT TO DO IT!!!!  I have precious memories, pictures and videos.  It was fun times with my kids, family and friends. We all learned a lot - I always say you learn more LIVING than you ever will in any classroom!

Everything I do now is anxiety-filled.  The slightest thing can cause anxiety because I never know what may set off  a medical emergency.

I'v refused an annual Lady's night for about 30 women in recent years.  I refused last year, and coincidentally, was an inpatient in the hospital the night of the dinner.  I refused again this year. It's too far away and too risky.  (See Good News! AND THEN... THIS HAPPENED!!!!)

These days, I look at the pros, it's what keeps me going.  (See Pros And Cons)

I am happy for the little things.  What is normal to others is a big deal for me. (See Incredible, Amazing Party With My Fabulous Fun, Insane Family And Friends!)

The times when I can be with family and friends is what I cherish. (See Family, Friends, Food And Fun!)

You don't truly know what others are going through. You can't tell just by looking.  What someone or something looks like may not be reality.  (See That Doesn't LOOK Gluten Free)


These days, I find ways to amuse myself.  (See The Intricate Process of Making A Cup of Coffee)

I believe everything happens for a reason.  The Powers That Be have a plan.  What that is or why it is, we may not know.  One day, maybe it will be revealed.  Or we may never understand in this lifetime what or why it is to be.  (See Divine Intervention? Amazing Luck? Or Was It Jinxed Real Estate? You Decide)

I am generally positive.  The situation does cause anxiety, but staying positive helps.  I keep in mind things could be worse.  I've lived worse.

I know people try to help.  One word of advice, if you see a friend, relative, stranger who looks really sad, don't guess at the problem.

The worst thing a stranger did was to see my facial expression and say, "smile, it's not that bad."

I'm a friendly person, however, that day I didn't have it in me.  I looked at him and said, "yes, Sir, it IS that bad."  Sometimes it can be THAT BAD.  No one can change it. It's beyond anyone's control.

We all have a long road ahead of us.  No matter what life deals us, all we can do is do our best.  We can choose to seek help, choose to stay positive, choose to enjoy what we can.  

That's how I deal with life's bizarre challenges.  I don't dwell on what was, I am happy about what is possible. I could be doing this alone. I'm not.   

I'd love to jet off to Europe, but I'm thrilled I made a party 10 minutes away! (See More On The Sweet 16 - In Pictures And Video Clips and 12 Facts About Long Island, New York)  

Find joy in what you can, don't dwell on what can't be. 

My little Mets fans, like "Daddy" - my hubby.
I'm alive, I have a wonderful family, friends since elementary school that are like family and I have my beloved dogs. (See 5 Ways Dogs Help You Feel Better)  It's all I need right now. 

Stay positive!

Articles on the horrific insurance mess coming soon!

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