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This marks my 200th blog post!

I went public with my blog in June 2019, so that's 4 years and 7ish months. I average less than 4 posts a month.

I know I don't have quite the following I once had and that's ok. I'll probably continue my intermittent posting for a while. At least as long as I find it therapeutic.

And if just one other person reads it, and gets anything from it - be it insight or just a break from the day - then it will make it worth my while.

I've covered a lot of topics on this blog.

It started as a way for me to "talk" about my feelings during the lowest point in my life. I felt so broken and humiliated and foolish and mad...and posting about it helped. It helped me work through my feelings and move past what had happened.

And every now and then, someone would message me and tell me I was helping them too by speaking my truth.

This blog saw me through dipping my toes in the dating pool and coming back to life. You were there when I first started dating Rob. When my beloved Spike died.

During the loneliest time - the Pandemic, early days when I wouldn't let anyone come near me.

You followed along through my awkward posts about trying to buy condoms. Or peeing my pants on a bus in the Dominican Republic.

I shared my vacations - not to brag, but as a reminder for me to look back on and remember those trips.

And if you weren't able to attend our wedding, maybe you were there in spirit when I blogged about it.

2019 started out as the worst year of my life. But because of that rough start, I have so much more now.

Which leads me to what I really wanted this post to be about. My friends.

I am so grateful for every single one of you in my life. I thank you for indulging this blog. For reaching out to check on me when I get a little too maudlin - just to see if I am ok.

And I hope you know, that I will ALWAYS have your back. I am not always the best at reaching out or checking in but I need you to know that you are always on my mind.

Willie just sang that in my head.

This past year has been a tough one. Being unemployed for most of 2023 was definitely not on my Bingo card. The depression has been real. Finding motivation to get out of bed each day is still a challenge.

But I do it. I eventually get up. I spend a couple of hours looking for and applying to jobs. I try to make the bed every day mostly so I am not tempted to crawl back in. I shower. I eat. I even occasionally do laundry or clean the house - though admittedly, not as often as I should.

I know finding a job will not magically fix everything overnight. But I also know it will help. A lot. Because even the worst job is better than applying for hundreds of jobs without a single nibble.

What do I have to offer? Even my mortgage knowledge is dwindling. I hope that if needed it will all come back to me but right now? If I had a mortgage interview I am not confident I would be able to answer specific questions. Plus regs and guidelines are always changing anyway.

In my lowest moments, I wonder what I have to offer my friends. Maybe it's this time of year too. To be completely blindsided in my most intimate relationship has always made me wonder...

What do I bring to the table?

I promise I'm not dwelling, but I want you to know my whole thought process.

When Daniel left me, I was forced to evaluate our relationship - alone, since he refused to give me answers. I knew what he had given me.

He always made me feel beautiful and loved. Encouraged me to break off the toxic relationship I had with my mother. Helped me raise my incredible boys. He took me on amazing trips. Indulged my convertible dreams. Built a pool even though he was in it maybe a total of 5 times. We went on cruises because he knew how much I loved them - he hated them. He encouraged me to be a wedding planner and supported me owning my own business.

I know in hindsight it may seem silly to talk about him in such a positive light. But then I tried thinking about what did I give him? What did I bring to the relationship? I loved him and supported him but that obviously wasn't enough. I didn't change his life in the myriad ways he changed mine.

Which makes me think about my friendships. I love and support my friends but do I bring any added value? Am I just good for baking and watching movies?

Am I boring?

I know you might think this is the depression talking but it has weighed heavily on my mind since 2019. Honestly the only relationship I feel certain I have added value (other than my boys) is Rob, and by way of Rob, Duncan.

I know they are both better off with me in their lives. I helped Rob cut the apron strings and Duncan is thriving. I won't go into all the ways because I'm not sure I feel that is my story to share. But I know they are both better off having known me.

I can only hope that my friends feel the same about me.

Dammit. I went maudlin. Sorry. Maybe these anti-depressents aren't working after all.

I'd like to end this post on a much more positive note.

Thank you for being my friend.

We travel down a road and back again.

Your heart is true, you're a pal and a confidante.

I love seeing all these smiling faces from our wedding. <3
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