Ingrid Goes West, Social Media, and Looking in the Mirror


Recently I watched a skin crawlingly uncomfortable yet amazing indie film called Ingrid Goes West starring Aubrey Plaza and Elizabeth Olsen.  Plaza’s Ingrid is a lonely young woman most likely suffering from some sort of mental illness or break following the death of her mother.  She becomes obsessed with Olsen’s Insta-famous Taylor who seemingly lives a perfect California life full of avocado toast, shopping, and trips to Joshua Tree.  Watching this film could not have come at a more perfect time for me because it spoke to a lot of the thoughts I had been having about social media as of late – the way we project and interpret ourselves and others and how it warps our perception not just of ourselves but the world around us.

While I don’t post on Snapchat I LOVE the filters.  It’s just silly fun. The filters on Snapchat are much better than those on Instagram so I usually take photos or video in Snap and then post them to my Insta-story.  About a week or so ago I was about to take a video with no filter and I stopped dead in my tracks unhappy with my appearance.  My skin has always been a bit textured from my teenage years and I tend to have a more rosy than usual skin tone.  While I have maybe never loved these things about myself, they hadn’t really bothered me before. They’re who I am and I’ve lived with them everyday.  And yet, I was uncomfortable posting like this.  “Let me put a filter on,” I thought to myself.


Suddenly I had a problem.

Using Snapchat filters had somehow, without my conscious knowing, gone from silly fun with reindeer antlers and waffle ears to a newfound insecurity about my face. I was thinking about microdermabrasion and chiding myself for not drinking enough water to help the bloat in my face.  It was like Snapchat had snuck into my brain and rearranged the wires.  And since then, all I’ve been able to think about is what it must be like to be a tween, teen, or young woman in her 20s growing up with social media and these images. Sure these images are fantasy and often ridiculous but they’re also clearly instilling the idea that thinner, smoother, lighter faces are better.  Big eyes. Baby voices. What must it be like to be coming of age, navigating what it’s like to try to feel both comfortable and uncomfortable in your own body, and then have to contend with this wholly unobtainable look?

Watching Ingrid Goes West I was really struck by the way Plaza was able to externalize that feeling we all often experience when we look at someone’s picture perfect life on Instagram.  The way it can drag us down further when we’re already having a rough time or make us aspire to things that maybe we don’t even truly want. And conversely, the way it allows us to hide behind a virtual mask that like the Snapchat filters I love so much, hides our imperfections and makes our lives seem fun, breezy, and free of rough edges or bumps.  Since watching the film I find myself browsing social media wondering who’s telling the truth, if anyone.  I think daily about how honest I’m being not just with “the world,” but with myself.  Is this the life I want or the life I think I should want?


Disconnecting and Embracing the Quiet


Joshua Tree National Park

I feel like I often hear my friends and other people my age (thirtysomethings) talk about wanting to disconnect.  “I just want to delete my Facebook…but it makes it so easy to keep in touch.”  “I just need to take a little social media break.” Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, Snapchat, it’s all become so ever-present in our life that it can begin to take over.  That’s not shocking news. But I think it is a little shocking how hard it can be to really take that break or delete an app.  Despite growing up as kids without cellphones, let alone smart phones, we’ve become adults who are hopelessly tethered to our devices and our virtual connections to the people and world around us.

I have personally had the same struggles.  I can’t tell you how many times I’ve defiantly deleted the Facebook app off my phone and then found myself “sneaking” onto the mobile page to do nothing but waste time.  Sometimes when I’m taking a break I find myself frustrated with my phone as if it’s a living thing, cursing it for having nothing for me to browse like a child whose parent did not bring anything to do on a long road trip. It’s a strange, first world, 21st century struggle.  Shouldn’t it be easier to do something you want to do?

Last month my husband and I took our first trip out to California.  The two major things we did were pretty much polar opposites – Disneyland and Joshua Tree National Park. We adored Disney but for me, the most remarkable, let’s do it again thing we did was spend an entire day driving through Joshua Tree. There was zero service almost immediately and it was, to be completely cliché for a moment, a tremendously freeing experience to be on a road surrounded by nature with no one to connect with but my husband.  At times we didn’t even bother trying to find an FM radio station to listen to and drove in complete quiet except our conversation.



Key’s View – 5000+ ft above Coachella Valley


We experienced so much within the 70+ mile trip.  We hiked, climbed rocks, saw the Coachella Valley from 5000 feet in the cold and very windy air.  We walked through a garden composed completely of cacti.  While I initially felt myself feeling withdrawal regarding my social media – feeling disappointed I couldn’t post something to my Insta Story as it was happening for example -or thinking crazier things like, “by the time I have service, it’ll be late on the east coast and no one will like my photo,” the whole lack of internet thing eventually drifted away.  We were in awe of seeing SO MUCH open space and so much varied terrain in one place.  We were humbled by the immensity of it all and found ourselves talking about the importance of preserving wide open natural spaces as we basked in the grandness and majesty of it all.



Cholla Cactus Garden

Being back to basics as it were; together with someone you care about with no distractions to speak of, was an experience I’m very grateful for. It gave us no choice but to evaluate our surroundings, our present, and our lives in general a bit.  It’s something that I’ve thought about a lot since when I’ve been overwhelmed with stress or anxiety – that feeling of vastness and the sensation that you could just disappear into the horizon if you wanted.  It’s hard to mimic that feeling exactly in suburbia.  But I would suggest that beyond just taking that break from the technological world, that quiet is highly underrated and often forgotten.  I’m not necessarily suggesting that you meditate – though that’s something that a lot of people benefit from – but something more like evaluating a need to fill every moment with sound.  When I’m doing anything from driving to working out to cooking dinner I have a podcast or music playing.  I want to keep reminding myself that sometimes it’s ok to complete tasks or tackle the everyday without aural companion. IMG_0932


We’re constantly stimulated, consistently distracted, and training ourselves to absorb life in short bursts instead of a long road.  Our lives often exist at a break neck, what’s next pace.  I’m looking to incorporate a little more Joshua Tree state of mind.



Grief. Grieving. Grieved.



Grief is sneaky, like a wave.  It ebbs away and for a period of time, distracted by work, life, whatever it may be, you forget that you’ve lost something precious.  And then it comes rushing back.  It always does.  Sometimes it’s shallow, lightly splashing around your ankles – a light malaise of sadness.  Other times it’s a rogue wave – knocking you to the ground, taking your breath away, sucking you under.  Unseen, unheard, you can’t time the rhythm of the waves – if there even is one.  You just have to roll with it even if it means some days you’re fighting just to keep your head above water.

I wrote in a previous post about losing one of my best friends this summer.  It was something, despite his illness, despite losing people in my life before that I was wholly unprepared for.  In the weeks following I was ragged and hollow, existing on superficiality and forced pleasantries.  I had half a day off work for his wake, a day for his funeral, and I was back at it.  We were short staffed and my attendance was essential.  I’m not sure what having time off would have done for me anyway – perhaps given me time to “process” his death.  Whatever that means.  Despite that it would have been nice to stay at home in bed, hiding under the covers, shutting myself off from the outside world for a bit I suppose.


Either way, the day after his death my husband and I closed on our first home.  “As one thing ends, another begins” people say.  “Life stops for nothing” others remark. People (myself included) are idiots. I was overwhelmed on a level I didn’t know was possible.  Emotionally I was fluctuating between completely shut down and totally raw.  It’s been just about four months now and grief has mellowed into more of a numb feeling, like a phantom limb I know was once there – mobile, efficient, powerful .  I have scattered photos of him and I, my husband, his wife, our friends, throughout our home as we decorate and when I pass them I do smile – weakly – because I know that’s what I’m supposed to do, what I will eventually be able to genuinely do.  But for now they remind me that grief is still ever present.  The next wave is building over the horizon.


Grief is…


Frustrating? Personal? Solitary? Communal? A bitch?

I really don’t know.  I know I’m not handling it in a rational step-by-step way.  I just try to weather it as it comes.  The weird guilt, for example. I was “just” his friend. I wasn’t his wife. His brother. His father.  Who am I to feel SO upset. To be talking about it still. The sharp anger. The week after his death people would catch me unsmiling and ask what was wrong. It was exhausting and painful to say even a clipped sentence of what seemed frustratingly obvious.  But they weren’t grieving.  For them life was business as usual. Yesterday was forgotten.

I don’t write any of this as a tale of a woman who is sad and looking for a hug. I write this because we all deal with these things to some degree at one time or another and it can often feel as though people are looking for us to get it together and move on.  Once some time has passed we’re expected to continue – and we do – but that doesn’t mean that we’re done grieving or the loss is unfelt.  The subject is not closed.  It can’t be. I’m in no place to tell anyone how to deal with anything in life, but for me, I’ve always felt better putting things out there & expressing my emotions.

So for better, for worse. Justified or not.  Frustrating, guilt ridden, sharp, numb, angry, sobbing, misunderstood, under-discussed – whatever it is, however it chooses to manifest itself, here is my grief four months later.


The Naked Man – Watching Past Shows Through Today’s Lens

It’s not surprising to look back at some of our favorite TV shows and find that not all of their jokes and plot lines have aged gracefully.  Friends, for example, has inspired many a think piece on the running jokes about Fat Monica or Ross’ inability to accept a male nanny as his child’s caregiver.  The show ran for a decade and a lot has changed since its finale in 2004, not to mention its debut over 20 years ago in 1994.  But even more recent shows are not immune to tone deaf story decisions.  Case in point – How I Met Your Mother.

The Naked Man 3

Premiering in 2005, How I Met Your Mother filled the void left by Friends in many ways.  A group of white twentysomethings living and working in NYC, spending an inordinate amount of time in the bar downstairs instead of a coffee shop, Ted, Marshall, Lily, Barney, and Robin, were Americas new favorite friends for 9 seasons.  The show had its finale just three years ago in 2014, and as a result it’s easy to think of HIMYM as a modern show that should pretty closely reflect our values today.  And yet…

The Naked Man 1

Back in Season 4 of the show there is a dubious episode entitled “The Naked Man” which originally aired in November of 2008.  In the episode, Robin finds herself on a blind date with a fellow named Mitch.  When she steps out to take a phone call, Ted enters the apartment to find Mitch sitting on their couch naked.  He explains that this is “his move” saying,

“It goes like this: you’re on a first date, you’ve had a few drinks.  You make an excuse to go up to the girls apartment. Then, once she leaves the room, you strip down naked and wait.  When she comes back, she laughs.  She’s so charmed by your confidence and bravado, she sleeps with you.  Boom.  […] The naked man is best used as a last resort.  A hail Mary on a first date when you know there’s not going to be a second.  […] My only shot with a girl like Robin is the element of surprise…and let’s be honest, a little pity.  It’s shock and awwww.”

The episode plays off Mitch’s actions as lighthearted and goofy.  Robin herself describes it as “funny.” To make matters worse, while recounting the encounter later at the bar, Marshall declares Robin is a slut saying that her actions make it seem like the only thing standing between her and sex are clothes. Watching endless loops of the show while falling asleep or getting stuff done around the house, the episode had always made me cringe but in a time where Harvey Weinstein and Louis C.K. among many others have had their heinous actions laid out in the open for all to see, the episode plays like a horror film with a laugh track – a step by step guide to sexual misconduct. Mitch’s actions are assault, plain and simple.  He doesn’t get Robin’s consent to see him naked.  In fact, he KNOWS she’s not into him and most likely not attracted to him and still makes the decision to expose himself to her.  She’s coerced into sex, slut shamed by one of her closest friends, and then subjects herself to another date with the creep in order to “defend her honor” and prove she’s not a slut.

The Naked Man 2

On this Stockholm syndrome date, Mitch admits that he knows he’s the only one who had a good time during their “encounter” the night before.  Meanwhile, Ted, Barney, and Lily are all trying the naked man for themselves.  Proving Mitch’s stat that it works 2 out of 3 times, Ted and Lily are successful while only Barney is met with the appropriate “sick son of a bitch” response by his target.  In the end, they all raise a glass to Mitch who they celebrate as a hero.  The episode is almost a decade old but it is shockingly tone deaf in today’s climate.  While some of Friends’ storylines are cringe worthy or un-PC by today’s standards, I can’t recall any as top to bottom ill-advised (at best) as The Naked Man.

In Memory


Christian, Juliann, myself Chuck, & Brendan at Chuck’s surprised 30th Bill Murray themed birthday.

Brendan Ruppenthal was one of my best friends.  He was also my unrequited high school crush.  I bring this messy, embarrassing chapter in my life up only because it speaks so directly to the kind of person Brendan was.  He, our friend Brian, and I were nearly inseparable in high school, participating in theater and multiple choirs together.  And me, being the sensitive, overly-emotional, nerd I was, developed a huge crush on Brendan and told him so.  And he, being the laid back, kind, and calming presence he was, made it very clear that he did not return my feelings but that we could still be friends.  My experience has always been that when you tell a friend you have stronger feelings for them and they don’t return the sentiment that that’s the end of the line.  Your relationship is never the same and most times you never talk again.  Brendan was the exception to that rule. His continued friendship was one of the greatest gifts anyone has ever given me.


Brendan introduced me to the Dave Matthews Band.  My first semester in college, in fact my very first week, Brendan drove up to Drew and picked me up.  We went to Hershey for the weekend and saw my very first show with his brother Christian who I had met but never hung out with before.  This was one of the most formative experiences of my life.  Though I was in college and virtually an adult living on my own in a manner of speaking, my mother had forbidden me from going and missing a class or two my first week.  Not unreasonable in retrospect. I went anyway of course and felt like some sort of secret agent, sneaking away with my friend, drinking my first bronsons in the parking lot and seeing DMB for the first time.  I remember telling Bren that I didn’t know if I liked bronsons or not before he laughed and explained that bronsons were beers and I was a dork.


Early rainy DMB days with Brendan and Christian.

FullSizeRender (1)

Look. At. These. Dorks.

Two weeks later I was taking a train into New York City by myself for the very first time and meeting Christian, his friend Brad, and later Brendan to see Dave Matthews Band in Central Park with 100,000 other people.  From that point on Brendan, Christian, and I with a revolving door of many others saw countless DMB shows together, sometimes I would see 5 in a year.  I’ve seen over 40 now. They were the days I looked forward to more than almost anything in my life.  Christian and I became just as close, maybe closer, than Brendan and I were.  In the end, Christian was the person who married my husband Chuck and me. Christian’s wife Juliann was by my side as a bridesmaid. All of this because Brendan generously made the decision to remain my friend.


Not long after I started going to shows with Brendan he met Jenny, his incredible wife.  And almost immediately that was it.  They were perfect for each other – two strong, determined, wonderful people, even more so together.  They forged a beautiful life full of friends, family, Disney, and so much more together through all kinds of challenges including their completing hockey fandoms – Rangers for Bren and Flyers for Jenny (something that continues to boggle my Rangers loving mind) – and for the last 9 years have fought Brendan’s cancer diagnosis with a united front stronger than anything I have ever seen.


Brendan, Jenny, and I at our first Cycle for Survival.

Three years ago Brendan found out about Cycle for Survival and encouraged us all to get involved.  He founded Team Rookenthal to raise money for rare cancer research.  Not just because Memorial Sloan Kettering treated him but because they treated so many others – gave innumerable people and their families hope.  In those three years, taking our lead from Brendan’s boundless enthusiasm and drive we have raised over $75,000 to fund rare cancer research – to try to end rare and underfunded forms of the disease like the one who took the life of my friend yesterday.


This year’s Cycle event. The first Chuck was able to attend.

Often when we die someday the best we can hope for is to leave a mark in the kind of person we were and the relationships we made while we were here.  Brendan already had that covered in spades. But in addition to the literally hundreds of people who love him and miss him fiercely, whose lives were better for having known him, he leaves a more tangible legacy in the founding of Team Rookenthal and his fight to end rare cancers not just for himself, but for all those affected. It has been incredibly hard to wrap my mind around the news over the last 24 or so hours, even knowing that he was sick, seeing him fight the way he did, it was often easy to imagine that this day would never come. It simply couldn’t.  The idea of losing someone my own age, someone who was still building that incredible life with his wife and son, is unfathomable no matter the circumstances. Every time my thoughts drift to him and the realization that we will never make another memory, we’ll have another beer, Rangers game, or DMB show together my heart breaks all over again, and I don’t imagine that feeling will stop any time soon.


Rangers games with the Ruppenthals are always an event.

FullSizeRender (2)

We were selfie masters before smartphones.

Brendan was the kind of friend who would call me from the Gorge and hold his phone up so I could hear my favorite DMB song that I hadn’t heard live yet. He was thoughtful and generous.  I am more grateful than he ever knew for his patience, his kindness, and his friendship. The last words I said to him were, “love you buddy. See you soon.” I wish I had gotten to say so much more. But, he hated my gushy emotional rants of gratitude, so he probably would have laughed it off.  Considering that I guess there’s really not much more to say than I got the chance to. My friend was kind, generous, devoted, selfless, brave, and funny.  He was one of the hardest workers I’ve ever known.  He was an amazing friend, brother, son, husband, and father. He will be missed more than anyone could quantify and will continue to be loved just as much.  Thank you for everything Brendan. Love you buddy. See you soon.


If you’d like to support Team Rookenthal’s continued fight to end rare cancers and Brendan’s wife Jenny and son Callan you can donate below:


Misadventures in CrossFit

Somewhere along the way I turned into a bit of a yo-yoer where my weight is concerned.  It’s always been super gradual either way but it’s gone up and down about 40-50lbs nonetheless.  After getting married three years ago it’s gradually gone back up until I recently decided that it was time to get my ass in gear and head back on that downward trajectory.  In my moment of determination I bought a ten class package for my local CrossFit gym and despite some reservations and a lot of anxiety, I went to my first class last week.  The following is an all too true account of my thorough ass whooping/humiliation.

I purchased ten classes because I knew the first would be rough and I wouldn’t necessarily have a great opinion of it simply due to the fact that I am wildly out of shape.  So despite the ability to try a single class for free, I dove right in.  Upon completing my transaction I got an email from the gym’s owner asking me if I was free to start the next day.  Things were getting real too fast and I immediately started to panic.  I politely emailed back letting him know that I could not make it, but would be in the following day, which luckily it turned out, was my day off.

I arrived just before 9am last Tuesday to the cavernous, loading dock looking gym.  I was greeted by Bryan, who had been emailing me, and quickly got set up in the system.  Warm ups started and I immediately felt the urge to run away.  Cartwheels were one of the warm up exercises, and as an awkward and sometimes very uncoordinated person, it felt like I was having a waking nightmare in which I show up to school with no pants on.  Additionally, I was already getting a little tired from the warm up.  This was not a good sign.  This however, was followed by the beginning of our WOD.  It was fairly simple and straight forward, 5 sets of deadlifts at 5 reps each.  I managed to do 70lbs on my last set and I was feeling a little proud of myself – cocky even.  You’re the daughter of a bodybuilder I told myself, it’s in your blood.  This was a mistake.

The last bit of the day was 20 minutes of body weight exercises.  20 pull-ups, 40 push-ups, 80 sit-ups, 160 squats, 80 sit-ups, 40 push-ups, 20 pull-ups.  The scaled down version was still 10/20/40/160/40/20/10 and I can’t do a single pull-up.   I was, how do you say…oh yes, fucked.  Luckily Bryan could sense the imminent death in me and kept me more or less on a minute on minute off cycle and I made it through.  The workout was mercifully over and I had survived.  But at what cost?  I made it home just in time to be hit with incredible nausea.  I took an Advil, some Pepto Bismal, and a 45 minute nap.  The next morning and indeed the two days that followed were marked by soreness so unspeakably painful I wondered perhaps if I had pulled every muscle in my body and was now one big walking injury.

So what’s the verdict?  Will I complete my 10 classes and emerge victorious and triumphant?  Will I drink the CrossFit Kool-Aid? Or, will I throw in the sweat soaked towel?  Well, the jury is still out on whether I will complete all 10 of those classes, but I do plan to return – tomorrow in fact.  I’m definitely not sold on the greatness of CrossFit just yet.  Everyone talks about the incredible community but aside from one girl, who played rugby of course, and was very nice to me, everyone else in the class stared at me with disdain and quiet judgment as I huffed and puffed through the exercises.  Beyond that, it’s going to be a rough hurdle to overcome for me, to get to a level where I’m on a more even footing with everyone around me and don’t feel profoundly embarrassed that I can’t keep up.  But, despite the immense challenge of it all I didn’t hate the experience and I did feel accomplished if pained afterwards.  I’m definitely going to give it a fair shake – so stay tuned for more misadventures no doubt.  “

My Dry(ish)* Month


I have a love/fear relationship with alcohol.  Both of those things, in writing, sound…well, not promising.  Growing up, I don’t remember my parents ever sitting me down and talking to me about my father’s alcoholism but it was not something that was ever hidden.  It was just a fact plain and simple.  He’d given up drinking sometime after I was born.  When I was young I always drew a sense of pride from the fact that my father had given up drinking for my mother and I, that he’d done it to be better for us.  As I got older and alcohol became something I was being confronted with, however, I was met with fear.  I didn’t really know what would happen when I started drinking.  Would I have one sip and never be able to stop? As it turns out that wasn’t the case but ever since I started drinking, that initial fear has never been far from my mind.  I’ve always wondered if alcoholism would come screaming out of me like a monster one day, if I was harboring a ticking time bomb.

Recently, after a weekend that included multiple brewery visits followed by a 6am-6pm hungover shift at work Monday, I thought it might be time to take a little step back and take note of my drinking habits and mostly, just take a break.  It wasn’t that I thought I might have a problem (it was not a typical weekend I had just taken part in) but that I felt like it might be enlightening after all these years of wondering, to take a step back for the first time since I was 19 or so, and really take a look at myself and my drinking habits. I felt like I learned a lot almost right away, about how much alcohol factors into my life in a subtle way.  A beer, much like a cookie or some other treat, can be a relief when you’re sad or you’ve had a really hard day.  It can be a reward for accomplishing something great or a way to celebrate.  I don’t drink mindlessly – just because.  I don’t have or even want a drink with every meal, but it was fascinating to see where it fits into my life, and honestly, how much I enjoy it.


Ok so blah blah blah, that’s a lot of rambling set up.  What did you learn Lola?  Well, to be frank, April sucked.  It was a shitty month.  My husband and I nearly had nervous breakdowns trying to buy a house and in the middle of it my aunt passed away.  Everything was made of stress and tears and exhaustion.  And still, I never seriously considered having a drink to blow off some steam. I can’t avoid a cookie when I really want one so that was certainly surprising to me; that I had the willpower to stay committed to what I was doing in the midst of utter chaos.  I learned that most of the time, drinking for me, is just about trying something new or having a good time with my friends. I actually like beer.  I like trying different kinds and learning about them.  I like tasting new cocktails.  I particularly like sitting around listening to the stories behind classic cocktails told by my friend Greg.  I learned a lot about when a beer or cocktail seems appealing to me (in no particular order):

  1. When cooking a Blue Apron meal after a long day on my feet at work
  2. When tackling a large unwieldy project like cleaning out our walk-in closet
  3. When having a sit down dinner out
  4. After a really stressful day
  5. Pretty much any moment of buying a house – take your pick
  6. Friday night when you’re just so happy the week is over and it’s time to have fun
  7. To try a new, interesting sounding beer – usually something from New Belgium
  8. When I see the same dang commerical over and over again on Hulu
  9. I could continue but I think you get the point

It was fascinating to me to see how often the thought, “I could go for a beer,” popped in my mind.  I learned that while there may be a myriad of situations in which I may want a drink, 99% of the time I’m not having more than 1 or 2 beers or cocktails.  When I returned to drinking on a camping weekend with my friends, I confirmed that I do have a little bit of that compulsive gene in me.  It usually comes out when I don’t want something wonderful to end.  My brain, impaired by alcohol, makes the incorrect assumption that if we all keep drinking the good times will continue.  Everyone knows they will not. And in fact, if you’re not careful, the good times will actually become the bad times.  But I was aware of that impulse in me this past weekend and actually curbed it a bit.


Last month I learned that alcohol is not essential to my life (duh) but that it’s something I enjoy having as a part of it. Saying you enjoy or love drinking feels slightly shameful –or at least it does for me.  Alcohol is something to be enjoyed sensibly and in moderation.  It’s social and casual, not something you love.  But maybe that perception is changing slightly.  My generation has come of legal age with the rise of craft beer and cocktails.  In 2017 America I would bet that virtually anywhere you visited in the country would have a brewery to visit within 20 minutes of where you’re staying.  Where I live in central New Jersey, for example, I can get to no less than six breweries within 15 minutes.  For better or worse beer has become a pastime.  It’s not a part of your social experience, it is the experience.  And so, with that in mind, it becomes perhaps a little murkier to evaluate the presence of alcohol in my life.  It’s naturally more present in someone of my generation’s life than it may have been for past generations. The point of all this is, I don’t think of myself as hiding a bomb waiting to explode my life anymore. But still, I wonder if maybe having that seed in my mind is what has kept me in a place of moderation with occasional over-indulgence.  Being self-aware is a great tool and my dry(ish) month is an experience that I definitely see myself repeating periodically.  Instead of wondering and ignoring, it’s refreshing to look yourself in the mirror and evaluate yourself – whatever answers you may find.



*In the interest of complete honesty, this blog is called My Dry(ish) Month for a reason.  I did have a few drinks to celebrate my husband’s birthday.  We went to a great restaurant with incredible cocktails to celebrate and I had been dying to try them.  We probably won’t be spending so much on a night out again anytime soon so I took a night off.  I still learned a lot.