The Beginning of Something Beautiful

I’m living right now, right now in a time of struggle and hardship where Shane and I are unsure about our future. It’s a time, where years from now, we will look back and see scars over our still open wounds. We will laugh about how hard everything was and how hopeless we felt, not realizing the potential that was locked away inside of us, hungry to escape. We will think about how unaware we were of the good fortune and blessings that were waiting, silently for us right around the corner. The fortune of our life and our livelihood coming together to work, finally, in our favor.

We will reminisce when our hair is silver and our children are grown, about how Shane decided to take a leap of faith and follow his dream, and how I followed mine by supporting him and believing in myself. We will see our babies with their own, raising them to be good and strong the way they, themselves were raised.

Now, don’t think me naive or romantic. I’ve seen and experienced my fair share of heartbreak and even misery. Unfortunately, my entire family has been through so much, but that’s the beauty of life, or at least my life. I’ve lived through a lot of difficult situations and everything that I’ve lived through has taught me something about myself that I never knew was there. Shane and I have gone through horrible times together that should have ripped us apart, but in spite of it all, we fell more in love with one another and we’ve learned that there is nothing more important than commitment, support, forgiveness and faith in, and for, our family.

I truly believe that we are wading the last of it. It’s time for us to begin our lives together and live them the way we were always meant to. I know we will look back and recognize this time in our lives as the beginning of something beautiful.

Alexis the Wheat-gan

As of today I have been wheat free since May and I have been Vegan for a week. Most people don’t put those two things together but I have decided to take it on and I am going to document my journey. 

The first thing I noticed this week is that I lost some weight. I started out being 171.2 and now I am 167.8.

The second thing I noticed was that I was extremely gassy. That’s right, stinky, hot, uncomfortably drawn out farts. Sorry about the description but anyone who is thinking about this lifestyle needs to know that with all that extra fiber in your new diet comes heightened flatulence. 

The third thing is that my family has taken notice. Shane, who flat out refused to go wheat free or vegan with me, has started eating my food. I make these delicious tacos with, “Meat Filling” and salsa, a baby spring mix, fresh chopped tomatoes and shredded carrots. They are to die for! He also likes my smoothies and he ate my entire pumpkin bread experiment (which I hated!) but he and my kids really enjoyed. My kids. They have been witnessing me eating vegan and there is definitely more curiosity than there was with the wheat free transition. Tawney (7) and Haidyn (5) are so intrigued by there mom who ate nothing for breakfast but eggs and turkey bacon, suddenly being satisfied with smoothies and veggies. Maybe I should just break out the scrambled tofu eggs already but honestly, I’m not sure if I miss eggs that much.

We watched a documentary yesterday on Netflix about the treatment of animals raised for food. I really never thought about being vegan for the animals. I have dogs but I would rather spend my time saving the unborn humans than animals, that we can and have been eating for centuries. The argument that we no longer need to live as omnivores though, is very compelling. The argument that we would be able to support 10 billion people on the planet if everyone just consumed a plant based diet is even more compelling. The truth is, with out flying off on a tangent is that we are killing everything trying to keep up with our meat consumption. 

I started this vegan diet to help with my fibromyalgia, kidney stones, weight and overall health but if I can help the Earth and teach my kids how to live a more healthy lifestyle then why not?

Well, the gas is one serious reason. I made Shane sleep on the couch one night because it was so bad. Seriously though, I’m going to stick to this diet and I’m really excited about how it’s going to change me and my family.

Alcohol, Narcotics and Weed… Oh My!

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To some this sounds deadly. To me, they represent my only lifeline.

Although lately, the tether on this lifeline hasn’t been long enough to reach me.

It’s 2 am and I can’t sleep for the 4th night in a row. I am currently on a pain pill for my right kidney stone pain. I was hoping it would also put me to sleep but no luck. It didn’t even take all my pain away and it’s to late to take another one. I have an early morning with all my kids.

It’s my last day with Tawney and Haidyn tomorrow before they go off for 6 weeks with my ex’s parents for the summer. They are good people and my ex mother in law is even sweet to my younger babies who aren’t her grandchildren. I appreciate that and I trust her with my oldest girls completely. It may not sound like much but I am extremely grateful that I don’t have to stress about this (stress and anxiety only add to my fibro symptoms). Our big day tomorrow consists of a morning walk with other mom’s and kids, then we head off to breakfast at our favorite restaurant, Tim’s Place. Next we are going to Shane’s work to pick him up for his lunch break and then to the Gravity Park, a large trampoline arena, for some jumping (the girls will be gone before they see what that will do to me) and finally we are ending the day together with frozen yogurt at Menchies. I am so looking forward to it. I am also worried about how my energy will be throughout the day. I love my baby girls so much and I want to be a mom that they enjoy their time with. Tawney is already cautious around me and has been conditioned to ask me how I’m feeling ever hour. It breaks my heart and I am determined to have fun with them before they leave.

I had to stop myself from drinking an entire bottle of wine for dinner tonight that Shane was kind enough to bring me when I asked. He made no remark to me about my lapse of better judgement considering I had told myself, and him, that I wasn’t going to drink anymore since I was starting to build up to high of a tolerance. So I asked around in the hopes of finding an alternative that could help get me to sleep and a lot of people advised me to try marijuana. So I got some, and gave it a try.

Now this may sound incredibly naive but I know virtually nothing about smoking and was knocked on my ass when I did it for the first time. I tried it a few more times and figured out how to get to feeling good and, mercifully, tired without completely incapacitating myself. Oh yea. Have I mentioned before that I have chronic asthma? Well I do. It was my first diagnosis at the age of 5 and a few days of smoking almost turned my asthma into full blown bronchitis, so I had no choice but to stop. Thus, the no sleeping this entire week. Thus the wine binge tonight. Thus, the self loathing. (Just kidding. Sort of.)

I’m exhausted but I keep at it. Everyday I try to do more and more to fill my time alone. I spend almost a third of my day alone in the middle of the night. It’s really depressing. So to stay focused, I work. I work on the Etsy store. I work on the wedding invitations. I work on my direct sales businesses. I work on my novels. I work on laundry. I make soap. I research other crafts I haven’t tried yet. I watch Etsy online labs. I cry. And now apparently, I write blog posts.

Us Fibromites have a saying that goes, “Nobody gets it, until they get it.” I would never wish the accursed, “it” on anyone. I hope it never happens to you. But if it does, I hope you find something that works and that you have a support system that doesn’t enable you but supports you on your journey to finding what’s helpful without judgement. Lastly, I hope that the journey doesn’t take you forever.

This is the day…

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Yesterday, Shane quit his job at a retail support call center for a well known cellular company. He had been battling with himself about quitting for weeks. On the one hand, he had this job that he was really good at and he was making pretty good money (though he absolutely hated it). He was #8 out of 250 people at this call center and would receive a bonus every month for ranking so high. On the other hand. He has been looking into a well know life insurance agency for a career change. He started studying to become an agent a couple of weeks ago and last week used his days off to attend their training. We hardly saw him.

My fibromyalgia has been bothering me more and more, having to take on more responsibilities with the house and the kids and the business. I was tired and I missed him. 

So I decided to take the kids out for the day and drive to his work to pick Shane up for lunch. The first thing he said as he got in the car was, “I hate this job. I can’t wait to quit.” 

“What are you waiting for?” I asked.

“Well, I was waiting to pass my license test so we could keep making money until I completely switched over to the new company.” He answered.

We looked at each other and I drove to a nearby gas station to fill up the car. (I like it when he does it because he looks so handsome standing by the pump. I also like hearing the kids laugh as he makes funny faces at them through the window.) When we got back on the road we drove around for a bit and I asked him what he was waiting to quit for? We had some money to use during this time and I promised to cut back on my spending. I pointed out how exhausted he was and that he was going to take his studying down to the wire if he continued to work full time. 

He looked at me and said, “That is such a good point. I’m going to quit after work today.” He was so confident but that confidence waned a little as we pulled up to the call center so I could drop him off. He questioned his decision one more time and looked to me to give him some reassurance. 

“You need to quit.” I said simply, knowing it was the right thing. He smiled and told me that he was going to do it and I felt so happy knowing he would come home tonight relieved. 

He’s been here all day today; interrupting whatever I’m doing to ask me to look over his latest Tweet, riling the kids up, asking to watch “Groundhog Day” as a family AFTER his favorite HGTV show, plus he ate all my boiled eggs! And I find myself asking… Oh Lord, what did I do? I love this man.

 

We are the Beards

 

 

 

 

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I am Alexis Anaya.

I am the fiance of Shane Murphy aka ShaneHasABeard. Together we have 4 children (ages 1, 3, 5 and 7), with my two oldest coming from a previous marriage. Shane is an amazing step-dad and dad, but we face challenges just like everyone. I deal with Fibromyalgia on pretty much a daily basis and kidney stones on and off for three years, while staying at home with our kids, running my two Direct Sales business and working on the promotion and product line of @shanehasabeard. Shane is currently working two jobs (transitioning out of one and into another), always has his mind on new material for his Twitter account and suffers from OCD daily.

Take all that and add our wedding in September and a big move to another state in December and you have the recipe for our hectic but normal (to us anyway) lives.

Sometimes Shane and I look at each other and wonder if we will ever catch a break but then we realize, that would be boring. Now is the time to discover what we want. We are adults and face adult situations while at the same time still finding ourselves and defining who we want to be as individuals, a couple, parents and professionals. It’s such an amazing time in our lives and I am so excited about documenting it. 

We are the Beards, it’s so nice to meet you!

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