Love in the Time of Quarantine

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A few years ago my family lost someone very important to them unexpectantly. The loss came out of nowhere and we carried our grief for a long time. I had so many regrets swirling around inside of me about what I wish I would have said to this person. How I wished that they knew that I cared about them and believed in them. But it was too late and I couldn’t say any of those things.

From this loss I learned a really important lesson. Always say how you feel and always say “I love you”.

Brett and I have been together for almost nine years, married for almost three. He’s my person but sometimes he’s also the person who annoys me most in the world. Our marriage isn’t perfect but I learned the hard way to always, always say “I love you.”

Every morning when I leave for work I make sure it’s the last thing I say to him. That’s how we end every single phone call. He texts me that he’s leaving work and I text right back “Drive safe. I love you!” Those are the last words I hear before falling asleep every night. Even if we are mad at each other we always make sure to say “I love you” and mean it.

My family has always been very loving. Every phone call with my mom or my sister ends with “I luhhhh you, boo boo”. There will never be a question on if we loved each other or not.

In these scary times I think it is especially important to let people know how you feel about them. I am very aware of this and try not to take any day together or conversation for granted. We might not be able to leave our homes right now but we can still call, text, or facetime our loved ones and check in on them.

Have you told someone that you loved them today?

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Photo by Jon Tyson on Unsplash

Five on Friday #17

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It’s finally Friday!

It has been such a long time since my last blog post and I have a million reasons why I haven’t been on here since. Today is my first day working 80% from home due to the Corona virus. I’ve mentioned before that I work in finance so you can imagine how scary and challenging the past couple of weeks have been as we have all watched the stock market tank.

I will still be going into work every day for about an hour and a half. Only a few other people will be there including security and our executive leaders. I am considered an essential role and there are a few responsibilities that I’m unable to do at home. I will complete those responsibilities in the office and work from home the rest of the day.

I’m sure we all have a lot on our minds so here’s five random things to lighten your Friday.

  1. My sister got married on March 7th in Maine! My family was able to fly out and be with her for 6 days to celebrate her wedding. It was a small gathering on the Naval base and I was honored to stand next to her as her Matron of Honor. I’ll share pictures soon!
  2. I got my Spring 2020 FabFitFun box and it was full of some really great products. I am became a FFF member as a birthday gift to myself and I have loved all of the boxes so far! My favorite product in this box was the packing cubes! I already used them for my trip to Maine.
  3. I fell off of the Keto wagon a bit during our trip for the wedding. I did really good up until the last day when I really just wanted some fish and chips and ice cream. I’m trying to get back on track but I’m still having lingering sugar cravings and headaches.
  4. Is anyone else looking forward to a chill weekend at home? We are always busy so it will be nice to just spend some time with Brett.
  5. I read an amazing book this week called How to Stop Time by Matt Haig. I haven’t been super into reading lately but this book was addicting. It’s about a man who has a condition were he ages very slowly. The concept isn’t new but this book takes your through what was going on in history during his life. It was very interesting!

How are you feeling with this pandemic? Do you have any plans this weekend while you are social distancing?

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Photo by Nathan Fertig on Unsplash

The Body Image Struggle

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When I was in high school I dated this guy who was really tall and skinny. One day someone asked me “does it bother you that you weigh more than your boyfriend?”. The thought had never even crossed my mind before that moment and looking back there’s no way that I weighed more than him. However, that one question haunted me and I made it my mission to be smaller than this boyfriend.

I don’t want to get into all of the details about this point in my life but it’s been 11 years and I still think about this question all the time. The question sent me into a spiral of body image issues that I still haven’t been able to fully recover from. 11 years ago I lost 20 pounds very quickly and still hated the way I looked. I basically starved myself and still couldn’t look in the mirror.

I think that body image is an issue that most people struggle with. I gained a lot of weight a couple of years ago but have worked really hard to remind myself that my weight is not a measure of my worth. Most days I do pretty good but some days I’m taken back to when I was 15 and someone compared me to my boyfriend.

On Saturday I went shopping for my Matron of Honor dress for my sister’s wedding. I’ve lost about 12 pounds in the past 6 weeks by eating healthy and moving my body. I’ve tried to keep this health journey really positive but the sight of me in a bridesmaid dress sent me back to a really dark place and I’ve had a hard time pulling myself out of it.

I’ve made so much progress in my body image journey but this proves that I still have work to do. I need to make decisions based on what’s best for my body and not the number on the scale or the image that I see in the mirror.

11 years ago I was asked a question that dramatically changed my outlook on life. Let this be a reminder that the words you say matter.

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Six Years of Blogging!

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November 21st, 2019 marked six years since I began writing Life of Hayley! I can’t believe that this incredible journey began with one badly written post that I typed up in my sophomore dorm room.

I had just turned 20 when I decided that I wanted to blog “for real”. I had a blog the year before for my freshman English class and I loved it! I’ve always been a writer and had given some serious thought to being a journalism major in college but it just wasn’t in the cards for me. Having a blog has fulfilled my love of writing and has given me something to be truly passionate about.

I’ve come a long way in six years. I’ve learned to embrace being an introvert and all of the awkward things that come along with it. I’ve made some great internet friends and have enjoyed following along with their journeys. I’ve graduated from college, found a job, and have gotten married! I’ve lived in London and traveled all over.

The one constant thing in my life over these six years has been this. Sitting down and typing out my thoughts and feelings for anyone to read. Writing has been my therapy and you have been my friends.

Thank you all for an amazing six years! I’m looking forward to many more to come.

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Photo by Sagar Patil on Unsplash

Living Life Outside Of Your Comfort Zone

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Last week was really hard. I went into 2020 feeling really confident and ready to take on the world. I was comfortable. But maybe I was too comfortable?

When I graduated from college I had no idea what I wanted to do with my life. I felt pressure to find the perfect job and be the girl boss that I had always dreamed of being. I applied for at least 20 jobs in under a month but it took me almost six months and countless interviews before I landed my current job.

The first year was hard and I wanted to quit so badly. I told myself to give it a year and spent my free time looking at job postings. I was miserable in my role and my boss knew it. I made a change and started a new role that I loved right away. I joined this badass team of women who worked hard and really cared about each other. I felt empowered and impactful in my role. I was comfortable.

Sometimes the best opportunities are outside of our comfort zones but we are afraid to make the leap. Last week I didn’t make a leap of faith. Instead I was pushed outside of my comfort zone in the worst way. I was asked to move back into my old role temporarily while our team adjusted to some other transitions.

I cried more tears than I’m willing to admit because I love my team and was so comfortable in my role that I didn’t want to leave. I had finally established myself as a leader and was prepared to have the best year. I saw all of my dreams and career goals crashing all around me and I panicked.

We aren’t meant to live safely inside of our comfort zones. There is so much life to live but we are too scared to see it. I had so many negative feelings about the job that I couldn’t cope with the thought of going back to it. I needed to leave my negative feelings behind me and move on in order to fully become the girl boss that I want to be.

It’s okay to be scared of the unknown and to feel trapped or anxious. It’s okay to want to stay where you feel comfortable. But it’s also good to do things that scare you. This job scares me but I’m going to put in the work and become an expert. I’m going to prove to myself that I can do hard things and make the best of bad circumstances.

My life isn’t over because my plan didn’t work out exactly the way I thought it would. I’m learning to live my life outside of my comfort zone. I’m taking it day by day and learning to trust myself and feel confident in my abilities.

You can tackle any challenges that you are facing. I believe in you.

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Photo by Cristofer Jeschke on Unsplash

Keto for Migraine: 1 Month Update

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I have heard SO many negative comments about the Ketogenic diet and I completely understand. For your normal everyday person a low-carb lifestyle might not doctor recommended. The Keto diet was created for people with Epilepsy and works well for other Neurological conditions. I have chronic migraines and there is no “cure”. I was told that Keto may lessen my symptoms and it sounded better than trying another medication.

One month ago I started following the Ketogenic diet. This is my third attempt and I was really successful on my first two so I went in very hopeful. My other two attempts were more for weight loss so I didn’t track my migraines as much as I should have. This time I’m trying to only focus on my headaches and migraines.

How were my migraines this past month?

I actually had a really great month overall! I caught a nasty cold but I didn’t let that stop me from following the meal plan that I had created. There was no guarantee that Keto would help me but I’m happy to report that I am feeling better! I’ve known for the past couple of years that sugar is a trigger for me so it makes sense that not eating sugar would have a big impact on my overall health. I basically cut my migraine days in half so far!

One of the hardest parts of chronic migraine for me is rebound headaches which are also called medication overuse headaches. I couldn’t beat my headache cycle so I started taking ibuprofen or another type of over the counter pain medication every day to get me through. This constant use of medicine started causing rebound headaches and I ended up in a never-ending headache. By eliminating my triggers I am hoping to be able to end this vicious headache cycle.

Have I lost any weight?

Yes, I’ve lost a little over 10 pounds in a month. In reality I’d like to lose 30 more to be at my “normal” healthy weight. I wrote my weight gain story here if you’d like to understand more about why I say my “normal” weight. Most of the weight loss at the beginning of Keto is just water weight and I’m really not concerned about losing weight at this point. I am tracking it in my migraine journal but it’s not my main goal right now.

Has Keto been hard? 

Not really! I have found myself reading my cookbooks and looking forward to grocery shopping and meal prep. I’m learning new recipes and I feel more confident than ever in the kitchen. My overall mood has improved so much and I think a lot of it has to do with Keto.

My sugar cravings went away after about two weeks. I don’t feel deprived of anything though! I eat a square of my favorite dark chocolate after dinner and that keeps the sugar cravings away. I’ve also found substitutes for my favorite snacks like salt and vinegar almonds instead of chips.

Let me know if you have any questions about Keto! I am not a doctor so please ask yours before you start any new “diet” program. I hate calling this a diet and I only feel the need to share how I am doing for others with migraines who may find this helpful.

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Photo by Brooke Lark on Unsplash

 

My Sunday To-Do List

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Sunday is a hard day for me because I feel so pressured to get everything done. I try to write my to-do list on Saturday so that I can cross off a few items before Sunday rolls around. We usually have plans on Saturday though so it’s hard to get too much done.

After my post last week about the things I do to prepare for my week I thought it would be fun to actually share my to-do list for today. I know that I probably won’t be able to get everything done on this list but I always try to!

  • Clean the bathroom
  • Empty all trashes
  • Clean out the fridge
  • Sweep and mop the floors
  • Finish the laundry and fold/put away clothes
  • Wash bedding and make the bed
  • Deep clean the kitchen
  • Go grocery shopping
  • Prep lunches and snacks for the week
  • Vacuum the couch
  • Change the kitty litter
  • Tidy the living room
  • Dust the furniture
  • Wipe down surfaces
  • Clean the mirrors
  • Organize the coat closet

If I have time I would love to put up my spring decorations. I haven’t re-decorated since Christmas so my house has looked empty for the past few weeks. I’m ready to add some color back into my decor!

Since it is Superbowl Sunday we will be heading to my parent’s house to watch the game and have dinner. I’m going to attempt to make some sort of Keto friendly appetizer for me and my mom.

Who are you rooting for to win the game today? I know nothing about sports so I’m really just in it for the food and commercials!

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Photo by The Honest Company on Unsplash