How Have You Been? I’ve Missed You.

by Jacque Gonzales

I’ve sat down in front of my computer numerous times over the last six months to write something here – and nothing came out of me. I have several upcoming posts in the works, but they’re no where near finished and it didn’t feel right to post any of them before I sat down and touched base with you. How have YOU been? Honestly, I’ve had better days…and I’m looking forward to better days down the road…but I’m no where near there yet. The stress from well over a year of the COVID-19 pandemic feels like it decided to show up like a giant weight that has been dumped on my shoulders. That cumulative stress has made it’s glorious presence known by causing ridiculous insomnia, nightmares when I do sleep, anxiety, depression, weight gain, zero energy, and a general feeling of life being a gigantic dumpster fire. I can’t help but think that there might be others who are feeling the same way – and some how, knowing, that we’re not alone in this feeling of being stuck on pause, might bring some comfort. And, yes, I have spoken to my doctor – and soon will be back with my therapist. If you are feeling down, PLEASE let your doctor know – they can help you – as well as a therapist.

During the last couple months of school, 3 male students committed suicide. They were all loved by their families and friends – and you hear about males feeling that they can’t reach out for help when they’re struggling. EVERYONE deserves help and no one should ever feel that they’re alone and can’t express if they’re having thoughts of ending their life. We’ve had talks with our daughter, Theresa, about suicide – and continually remind her that she can always talk to us, her friends, teachers, and/or doctors if she has issues she needs help with, or to let go of anxieties and stressors. She’s assured us that the will always come to us, but knowing that there are parents who have lost children to suicide who knew they could turn to them – that worry is always there. My heart is broken for the parents, family, and friends.

Finding Happy Things

Our beautiful rhododendrons!!!
I wish they bloomed more than once!

Having stress, anxiety, and sadness – added to not taking care of myself has taken me down a path that I MUSST get off of. I have to be intentional about getting healthy and finding ways to alleviate stress in any way possible. Trying to find things that make me happy could be key in helping to move through some of these feelings…and then MAKING MYSELF ACTUALLY DO THEM…that’s the hardest part when you’re feeling down. Spring is my favorite season, despite the pollen wreaking havoc on my asthma, and I want to enjoy it’s beauty before it’s gone. So this weekend, Theresa and I will be going outside to take some photos of all the blooms going on in our yard. We both love taking pictures – so we decided to make that a priority. The other thing we’ve talked about doing is painting together – and even try to get my hubby to paint with us.

To Boldly Go Where No One Has Gone Before

One fun thing that Theresa and I started – watching Star Trek together! When CBS started showing the rerun episodes of “Star Trek: Discovery” around Christmas – I was watching it and Theresa got interested. So, being the sci-fi fanatic that I am, I subscribed to CBS All Access so we could watch all the seasons. We LOVED it! Now we’re anxiously awaiting the start of season 4! While we were watching “Star Trek: Discovery” Theresa asked me if the other Star Trek shows were good…soooooooooo we watched a couple of the original Star Trek – she liked them, and thought the made a good choice with the actor that played Spock on Star Trek: Discovery as a match to the original Spock. After reading about the suggested viewing order by different Trekkies – it suggested that we would be good to start with either the entire original series OR Star Trek: The Next Generation. If you’re a Star Trek fan, do you agree with the suggested starting points for new viewers?

We dove into Star Trek: The Next Generation – and I introduced her to my long-time crush Sir Patrick Stewart (AKA Captain Jean-Luc Picard). We decided to watch the first season – and then go back and watch a couple more of the original series before we start season two of TNG. The great thing is that now that CBS All Access is now Paramount+ – and they have EVERY episode of ALL of the Star Trek franchises! We’re currently midway through Season 5 of TNG. Now that school is officially out for the summer – I have a feeling we’ll be speeding up our consumption of all things Star Trek! I wonder how far we’ll get by the end of the summer? TV isn’t a solution, but right now, we’re taking any WIN we can get!

You Are What You Eat

The next major thing I need to tackle – what I eat. I’ve always been a picky eater, for the most part – and I often forget to eat – which is horrible for my already sluggish metabolism. My hubby and daughter are pickier than me – BUT Theresa says she’s willing to start trying more foods – so there’s hope! YEA! I’ve been scouring Pinterest for simple recipes that we’ll all enjoy. Also, finding easy recipes to make in my Ninja Foodi has been keeping me busy pinning away. Chicken is the main category I’m researching – and that everyone will eat. For those who have picky eaters in your family – or are a picky eater yourself – let me know in the comments below what do you make to eat?!?

Got To Get Moving

Getting myself moving again – by walking – is absolutely mandatory for me. I use to do at least 10,000 steps in a day, but in the last 2 years I’ve had some days where I’ve barely taken 1000 steps. So, this weekend I will start walking outside again. I’m hopeful that if I can make it a habit I’ll start to feel better. In fact, I’m going to wrap things up here and go out for a walk right now. Someone please check in on me next weekend to see if I walked during the week as well! I need an accountability partner!

Thank you, my friend, for being here. I feel better getting a lot of this off my chest – and have a feeling I’m not the only one who’s been having a tough time. Please know you’re not alone, and if you need help reach out to family, friends, and/or your doctors for help. Sending you lots of love and encouragement.

💜 Jacque

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Lesa E Davis June 20, 2021 - 5:27 PM

I hope you had luck with walking more this week, Jacque. It’s been in the mid 90’s here this week. Early mornings are the coolest time of the day!

Nancy Trecina June 14, 2021 - 2:23 AM

Dear Jacque,
I think of you often and have been wondering where you have been.
I think what you are feeling has happened to all of us one time or another. Realizing you are in a rut is a positive step to digging yourself out of it. Try and enjoy summer with your family. Do outdoorsy things if it isn’t too hot. Grill chicken (marinated several different ways for variety) add a salad or grilled veggies and voila a simple healthy meal.
You Jacque will be back! Allow yourself time!
If you would like a pen pal friend, private message me.
Hugs and Prayers,

Lesa Davis June 13, 2021 - 7:57 PM

Hi Jacque! I was glad to see your post! It has been a strange time for all of us. Even after I got my 2nd vaccine shot I was leery about going out and about. I’m gradually venturing out. I went to a birthday party yesterday and a Sip and See today! It was my first Sip and See. I had never heard of such a thing. But it was fun seeing family I hadn’t seen since before the pandemic. I also gained weight during covid. I used to swim at my area YWCA and am looking forward to getting back to swimming. I adopted a stray cat during covid. He’s very sweet and gets along with my other boy cat. I had been feeding this cat for a long time. This past winter we had a cold spell where it got down to -13°F! During that time is when he decided to move in with me! Well, I’ve blabbed long enough. I hope you and your family continue to do well. Have fun watching Star Trek and good luck on getting back to walking more!

Sharon Ellis June 13, 2021 - 9:05 AM

Jackie it is so good to hear from you. Like you I have been bogged down, there is no other way to describe it. I am a widow and live alone. My dog died suddenly 3 days before Thanksgiving and several members of my family got covid and one died. Then my best friend and confidant died in April. I have gained weight but I have started walking and eating better. Also I am a trekkie. Love Star Trek. I am so glad you reached to remind us that we all have someone to talk to about how we feel. It is so important in this difficult time. Prayers for your journey in new pursuits. God Bless.

Alice Norsworthy June 12, 2021 - 10:22 PM

Happy to hear from you and so sad that you have been struggling. Praying for you and your family.

Dan Shannon June 12, 2021 - 9:31 PM

Hi Jacque…sorry to hear of your emotional struggles during the pandemic, but I’m sure you’re aware that it’s been hard on all of us in some way, shape, or form. Fortunately, all of my family & friends have been either unscathed by Covid or had short-term minor symptoms…the worst thing happening being a former college buddy getting laid off after 25 years of working for a restaurant chain here in Houston that decided to restructure their staffing after reopening. Btw, did you see the futuristic QVC artwork I Direct Messaged to you on Instagram awhile back? If so I hope you liked it. Take care!

KATY PARR June 12, 2021 - 7:48 PM

Happy to hear from you Jacque! Sad to hear you have been struggling, but you sound like you are taking steps to move forward toward a healthier lifestyle. Sending you hugs & prayers for the best life ever!


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