Wednesday, August 26, 2009

It's a Love Story

Damn you Taylor Swift! Your song has been overplayed on the radio so much that it may now be stuck in my head on an endless loop and I can't get it out of my brain. Lucky for you it happens to mash up well with my life right now so I guess its not sooooo bad.

Yeah, its bad folks. So bad that here it is almost 11pm on a "school" night and I got myself out of my nice comfy bed to come here to post about how much I love my boy. I know, I am totally making MYSELF sick with all the ewwy gooey mushy stuff. It's a bit over the top and I wish someone would please just shut that Tracey chick up....for real! I mean how much more can I say it? And frankly I am only blogging here cuz the poor boy needs to get some sleep and not entertain his poor girlfriend who just wants to have long conversations about how much in love we are and why exactly does he love me? Enquiring minds wanna know! Ya know??

And before I make myself look too pathetic I am not exactly alone in these conversations. I won't speak for Chris but let's just say I have a willing hostage.

I do feel a bit guilty not highlighting this part of my life a bit more. I know I have talked about Chris these past few weeks but it has been with a clingy, desperate, life raft kinda energy and that is not what our relationship is about and not how it deserves to be showcased.

Let me step back for a second......

I have a dear friend who was a bit of a slacker back in the D. Let's just call him DJ, (mainly cuz that's his name). Now DJ had some toxic relationships during the time that I knew him and then we fell out of touch for a bit. When I caught back up to him I was shocked to learn that he was engaged! I asked him how he managed to lock one down and in his oh-so easy going manner he shook his head and smiled at me and told me words that have never left me since the day he uttered them to me....he said, "Tracey, I just never knew it could be so easy... Loving her is the easiest thing I have ever done." I have been searching for that kind of love ever since that day. I have told that story a million times and always with a pang because I really didn't know if it would ever happen for me.

I have spent so much of my life hiding in plain site. Being so overweight is hard to explain. It's hard to help someone understand how something (someone) so big can just disappear right in front of you. I have spent so much of my life near the action but on the fringe of life, being there but not participating. Close to the spotlight but never dead center. People would tend to see right past me even when I was standing right there. For my friends I was the witty wingman, ready to charm, flirt and help sort all the potentials but never did the boys see or -god forbid- want me.

Chris sees me and it may be for the first time in my life I am seeing me and letting myself be seen. My brilliant boy hit upon something last week and I have been mulling it over ever since.

He called me out as being shy.

At first I got defensive but the more I think about it the more I think he is right. I am shy because I have never really been out before. I have lost my protection, my "mask" that I used to hide in plain sight and to protect myself. And now, for the most part, that is gone and people are really seeing me and looking at me for the first time. I am getting random men calling me beautiful for the first time. I am getting all this attention for my accomplishments and as much as I am seeking it out to a degree I am also very uncomfortable with it. I am just not used to being so open. Ok.....what the hell am I doing blogging right? Isn't this being pretty open?? Yes, but I control this you see. You only see what I show you. However if we are in a room together then I can't hide and that's when I feel like pulling back. Chris was right and now he is being that gentle yet firm hand at the small of my back supporting me and making sure I don't run away just cuz I am a bit nervous from all this attention.

It's a pretty amazing thing to have someone you love really see you like that.

I want to talk about how pure and raw and wonderful it is to be in love and be in this first part of our relationship because I do know with all my heart that this is forever and he is my THE ONE and someday years and years from now we might not spend hours lying in bed staring at each other and telling each other in the greatest of detail how much we love each other - although I hope we will. And we might not send silly texts to each other all day just so the other knows we are thinking of them. And someday the future might not seem as bright and shiny and wide open as it feels now.

I want to archive this feeling and capture the endless love and passion I have for Chris and our future now so I can always look back and remind myself of how very luck I am to have found someone who made it so damn easy to be in love......

Sunday, August 23, 2009

Don't Last

I feel like I have been in reactive mode for so long now. I have just been in survival mode and been "just getting through" whether it was getting through this day or this week or that mythical "just until x" happens....whatever x is and whatever magic thing will happen when x gets here.

Again, I realize fully that I am not so special and some people go through their whole lives in reactive mode. I just want to get ahead of this curve for once and as I said in the last blog really grab the reigns of my own life and start taking control. Now some would argue that me getting my weigh under control was doing just that but to me that was just getting something out of control back in line which is not quite the same thing. I feel like I have gotten it back to where it should have been all along and -now- where I take it is me taking control. And I have to admit I am finding it hard to get the motivation to get all hard core again. Now that I have stepped off the wagon for a bit it is so so hard to get back to where I was before. I am hoping that getting back into a routine will help with that but the truth is I haven't been making myself a priority because just keeping my head above water has been such a chore.

I want so much for the future. I want to build a life and family with Chris. I want to start traveling. I want to get a house that Chris and I can call our own. I want to share my story with as many people who need to hear it. I want security and stability and I want to give back.

I know I have so many of the building blocks I need in place and now I just need to recommit to the path I have started to walk down. The past 2 months were a stumble and a slide down and I am scratched and bloodied up a bit but no permanent damage and now it's time to brush myself off, shake it off and attack that mountain again.

Tough times don't last but tough people do.....I will last and thrive and be fabulous. Watch me!

Saturday, August 22, 2009

I demand a recount....

Seriously, I am pretty sure we either got shorted some days or else we got put into some time vortex. All I know it I have little to no clue what has happened in the last 2 months. Everything is just this huge blur and I just can't believe August is almost over.

That being said I am excited for a brand new fresh month to start off with a clean slate. This summer has been one of the best and worst of my life- and for those of you playing the home version of my life know that is saying something!!

The bad is obvious- losing my job and have some pretty major personal issues (yes, still not revealing that bit but it adds an air of mystery though- non?) Battling unemployment (frigging JOKE- never in my life used it and then when you do you get treated sub-human for needing it), weeding through the interview process (and again, kinda my world so you'd think I would have had a bigger clue, you would be wrong) and the financial crunch (ongoing but my worries were greatly lessened by a loan from my Daddy and support from Chris).

But there has been some good news as well.....hmmmm. Let me see if I can remember what good happened? Oh yeah- I met and fell in love with the man of my dreams. Poor guy, if he only knew the rollercoaster ride he was signing up for when he hooked up with the likes of me. He seems to not mind so much and I haven't been able to scare him away yet so that bodes well for me at least- for him, just means he is in for a hella lot more of Traceyness in his life. I am just so excited for what lies ahead for us. I don't think smooth sailing is likely but I am hoping the challenges get to be a little less bumpy and the highs we get are from climbing up to the next peak, not clawing our way out of the ravine we just broke our asses on.

And as much as the whole looking for a new job sucked -and took waaaay too long for me (yes I know plenty of people are still looking but I am a want it NOW kinda gal, sue me)- I did know I would find something at the end I would be excited about. I am VERY excited to start the new gig on Monday. Ironically it is in the same building I working in 4 years ago. Life is full of turns that lead you right back to where you were it seems. It is totally out of the staffing and recruiting biz and as passionate about recruiting I am I am so relieved to get out of it for awhile. It is just so draining right now and such a struggle. It's time to give it a rest and go play in a new sandbox for a bit.

I am most excited about getting back into a routine. Having my schedule so outta whack has not been good for my workout routine plus with everything happening it has just made it hard to get into that rigid plan I had been working. I did finally get back to yoga class today and it was much much needed. My regular instructor was back which was great- she had been gone the last 2 classes I attended and I think anyone who goes to a regular class can attest to the fact that subs are ok but you get used to one persons style and its hard to switch. Especially since I am craving "my" routine back so much- it was nice to do my regular Saturday thing. Yoga, grocery shopping (I am busy buying more "staple" ingredients so Chris doesn't have to be so McGyver like when he cooks at my house) then laundry and cleaning......normal stuff that bust people do. Ahhhh routine, nevre underestimate the power of keeping to a schedule.

I can tell things are getting a bit back to normal cuz I had a whole "I hate how my body looks" meltdown today. The struggle continues....won't bore you with the details but it all started in yoga when my arm flap covered half my face as we were doing a side bend- and no, I am not even kidding. At least that is a frustration I know and can somewhat deal in a weird way it was comforting to have the same old rant roll through my head.

So as I sit here doing my best to grab the reigns of my life again and get this horse and buggy headed in the right direction I am hoping for a little bit of peace in the next few months. It is my life so I know crazy shit will happen....cuz that is just how I roll....but it WILL be (to think is to create) fun, creative, and filled with love and adventures of the very best kind. I will be in a better place financially and plan better for rainy days and pay forward all the support and good vibes that were sent my way these past few weeks. I am so grateful to be coming out of this tunnel and once again I am a bit bruised, battered and broke down but I am stronger, wiser and I have a wonderful new partner holding me close and lifting me up every chance he gets.

Could be worse.... ;)

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Getting what I NEED

It used to be such an easy question to answer....."Hey Tracey, how's it going?"

A "good thanks" or a "s'ok, how bout you?" used to do the The answer takes a ton more consideration depending on who is doing the asking (and if they follow the blog or are my Facebook friend- lots of info in those status updates!!) And recently there is behind the scenes stuff brewing that hasn't made it into the blog yet....and may or may not ever be "blogworthy" and frankly since -I- know all the info I forget who knows what and where I posted what so's it going? The answer depends on how far down the rabbit hole you actually want to go.

In an attempt to answer that question for y'all let me catch you up as best I can.

Fine thanks.....and you?

Ok, just kidding. Here is the dish...


I have one, at least one, and hope to have several others by the end of the week. Options are good so I am busy working on closing as many offers as I can and then have my pick. I have one solid offer in hand that I am interested in, one verbal offer that I am VERY excited about and 3 other companies I am in the final interview stages in that have potential and are basically my insurance policies. Basically I am feeling comfortable enough that I am not actively applying for anything new although until I have started somewhere (and even after) I am keeping my options open. It doesn't look like I will have a start date on any of them until Aug 31st which sucks for my bank account but it is utterly beyond my control so all I can do is spread my pennies as far as I can and see what happens. It's all baby steps right now but I do feel good about the offers I have and have pending and am confident the right thing will sink and this little blip in my career will be in the past.

In the meantime the job I still have is pulling me back- I have to go to the office tomorrow and register a bunch of temps and my boss talked to me today about staying. I would in a heartbeat but as he isn't paying me anymore it makes it tough. He did tell me the door is open and I always have a job with him. Great, lemme know when it is a PAYING job again. Not that I am not grateful....hrrmmmm.


::::::deep schmoopy sigh::::::
(for those who want the backstory on schmoopy click the link- and blame Fran for calling us schmoopy in the first place)

What can I say? I have waited my whole life for this type of love. I may have been in love before but it has never been this complete. Chris is the perfect man for me. He is literally everything I have ever wanted or hoped for and I know I he came into my life at the exact right time. If I had met him a second before I did I would not have been ready for all that he has to offer me. Even now he scares the crap out of me because he is there for me 100% which means if I push, even if I push real hard...he isn't going anywhere. And if I become a total dumbass and sabotage myself and our relationship, he isn't gonna run away.
Do you have any idea of how scary that is?? This guy is here and in my life in a very real way for the long long haul. This is a forever kind of relationship and as amazing as that is to say (just shy of our 3 monthaversary I might add) it is even more amazing to be a part of. We have already had so much life thrown at us and we will have even more challenges come up because like me, he isn't about to take the easy, safe path. He is there beside me trucking straight for the deep end of the pond. Not to say it's all about me- it is for sure not. He is his own person and has his own projects and his own way of doing things. He is the anchor in our relationship and slows me down when I wanna run to the edge and lean waaaaaay over. Which is good and let's face it, I need a leash now and then. Yet I am pulling him ahead and getting him to places he didn't expect to go so soon and I am pretty sure he is glad he is there (now)...
Right baby?? :)

I am just so at peace with him and his place in my life. He spent the WHOLE weekend with me (relationship milestone) and we did all these domestic chores, laundry, cooking (him -obviously) and it felt so right. I even cleared out a cupboard for him and all the ingredients we bought so he can make me yummy things like chicken satay. He even has his own drawer in my dresser- bonus of getting rid of all my bigger clothes is there is plenty of closet space for him now! Oh and we have officially begun the meeting of each others friends....which will go much better when MY friends stop flaking out. Oh well....(and yes, we will be coming to Iowa at some point.)

So yeah......for the first time in my life I am in total bliss when it come to love. It's not perfect, nothing is....but it's perfect for us and that is all that matters.
I love you Chris...MY boy.


This is where the meat of my life is right the "other" category. I am on the fence about how much to talk about so forgive the vague-ness right now. What I can tell you is BIG and POWERFUL things are happening in my life having to do with sharing my story. I have had a few interesting meetings and conversations and getting some great feedback.

The thing that is most important to me about these next steps is being very true to who I am and what this journey has been about for me. At the end of the day I think there are a ton of lessons that can be learned from my story and everyone can take something different from it...and dozens more lessons I am learning about myself everyday. I don't need to shout from the rooftops how much weigh I lost cuz its not even about that really, that was just the journey I took- all I want is for people to know they YOU are wearing the ruby slippers and whatever it is you want to change, you can whatever the journey you need to take is. Just click your heels cuz you can go home anytime you want, you just have to call it out and then execute (the part The Secret forgets to talk about). You are already the person you need to be, you have every single thing you need to be AMAZING at whatever you want to accomplish in life. All you need is to unlock that potential and unleash the POWER you have onto the world.....just yell out "duck!" before you dothe unleashing cuz that's how people get hurt! ;)
It's hard and scary....I am the last person who will say it's easy but it can be done by ANYONE who is willing to get out on their skinny branches are reach for the end. And when you have the right people around you, ones you KNOW will never let you fall (unless falling is what you need to happen in your life- and sometimes it is) that is cool stuff.

This keeps coming back to me: The universe doesn't give you what you WANT, it gives you what you NEED.

What do you need?

Thursday, August 13, 2009

The Process Sucks

It really does.....job seeking I mean. And mind you this has been my primary occupation for most of the past decade so I should be a bit more aware but I haven't been on -this- side of the table for a long time and it's been years since I have been unemployed for this long. Yes I know it's only been 2 weeks basically but when you break down the math it is a long ass time.

For the unemployment process alone you file...then depending when in the week you get your paperwork in the mail to sign you have to wait a week before they process. So you can basically go 2 weeks with no income at all which is the case with me. And then they never sent me the debit card that they deposit the money into so while in theory I got "paid" this week (a whopping $240- yes better than nothing but still not enough to pay the bills) I can't get any money until I get a card reissued and sent which will be mid week next week at the earliest. Until then I literally have $40 to my name. I did have $65 but had to put a little gas in my car so I can get to these interviews that have me running from one end of Phoenix to the other. Here is a tip for anyone who is looking can write off all mileage and expenses associated with your job search. So I have all my mapquest directions which I will put in an excel doc and can write it off when I do my taxes. Same is true for printer ink and paper to print resumes, and fee's for faxing resumes.....etc. Hope that helps someone.

Ok so that is the money part that sucks. I have no idea where I am gonna come up with my next mortgage payment and yes I have already asked for a deferment and no they won't do it. I had one ace in the hole- a friend who would give me a short term loan if I asked. Well I asked only to find out he was just laid off! I dunno how this will work out but I can only take it step by step.

Right now the waiting part is what is killing me. I had the "for sure" offer I thought I had in the bag last week. I even got a verbal offer and then the next day got and email saying they passed and I have not heard a word from them since. That really hurt but I brushed myself off and have been plowing through every lead I have come across since then. I tell ya, if I didn't need a base income I would have about 10 jobs right now. It is sad and shocking how many companies are taking advantage of people right now by not paying anything but 100% commission. Don't get me wrong I have always worked commission but pay people what they are worth them give them an incentive. A base should be enough to pay your bills and commission is lifestyle money but companies right now need to shave margins and while they need the sales talent they won't pay upfront. current situation. It is just sad. It's such a great opportunity for companies to do the right thing but instead they are going 1099 with their reps for the same reasons a dog licks its balls....cuz they can.

Momentum has picked up for me....I am waiting for "final steps" and hopefully offers from 2 companies and I have 2nd interviews scheduled with 2 other companies so I have back up and something else in the pipeline. I had 2 other interviews this week that I don't think will go anywhere which is fine. I just need to get to work asap.

The waiting just kills me...I am pretty much an instant gratification girl by nature anywho (seriously, just ask Chris- or anyone else who knows me) and waiting for feedback and next steps is beyond painful. The only reason I am blogging right now is I don't want to go work out yet because someone might call before the end of the day so I will wait until 5 before I call my "work" day done. Uuurrrgggghhhhhhhhh

No patience.....none at all. I do my best and I am confident that one of these 4 things will close but in the meantime I need to be sedated!

Monday, August 10, 2009

I'm not Special

Wow- well where are we now in our little tale (thumbing through pages of notes) Ahhhhh yes, we last left little Tracey all sad and pathetically unemployed crumpled over there in the corner. Life had dealt her just one too many knock out punches.

But life doesn't let the story end there does it? The truth is I am scared and I have NO CLUE where to pull the bunny out of my hat that will save my ass here. I have made a career out of being solidly networked (over 3500 connection on LinkedIn alone!) and yet right now that has yielded me exactly- nada. And all my groups and "friends" and even my real friends have offered sympathy and support- which I am soooo grateful for don't get me wrong- have not been able to guide me to any kind of employment opportunity. Oh yeah....and let's not forget that I am a RECRUITER and if -I- don't know how to track down a job lead well then...I guess I deserve to be in this mess.

It's tough and scary and it has never ever been this bad. I just barely managed to scrape together a mortgage payment for this month but that doesn't allow for bills or silly stuff like- oh I dunno, food?? I mean I know I fell off the bandwagon a little with the train wreck that July turned out to be but I do still need to eat something.

Yeah side note ** totally ironic that right after this great series of articles appears highlighting my weigh loss success I have the most stressful month of my life and decide that I "deserve" some comfort food to "treat" myself. Wow, do those words sound familiar? Let's just say that I would need to revise my "loss" numbers and not being able to workout for 10 days really set me back even more. I am cleared to exercise again now though so hopefully that will help my mood, energy and get me back where I was in June. And for all my peeps who suffer depression as yours truly does.....I am here to say that NOTHING is better than exercise. I know you don't want to hear it- especially when the couch is so comforting but it's true. If you can force yourself to start moving you feel so much better. At least I tip 'o the day.

No, I am still not going to give a public declaration of how dark the rabbit hole got for me in July my friends know and if they don't know I hope they know they can ask and I will share. Just some things aren't for everyone to pick apart as is happening now that my little diary here is getting peeked at by some more eyeballs. Suffice to say I am officially saying I have enough checks in my "loss" column and it can be someone else's turn for awhile.

So what am I doing about it? Well posting sad little updates on Facebook seemed to do no good and I think I turned a bunch of people off (myself if no one else) so I am going to attempt to curb that strategy. Also taking out my frustrations on my love- who only wanted to take care of me and made me a big pot of soup so I would have several homecooked meals in my fridge- that didn't work so well either. Sorry baby, I love you and am VERY grateful for you and your love.

I am posting my resume like crazy, working my network, calling old clients/contacts and lowering my standards to find anything that will get my some income. Not my dream but $240 per week from unemployment will NOT cut it- and that is if I ever get that rolling. Three hours on the phone today with no results says its not looking good.

I will dig in and focus and "just keep swimming" as my fave little mantra directs me to do and do my girl scout best to slap a smile on my face and keep the panic at bay. I know this is a blip in time that I will barely remember as I look back. I know I am not special and thousands of people are in far worse spots than me but dammit its MY life and it means something to me and to Chris. I will get past this somehow (god I wish I could just flip to that page) but for now....yeah it sucks and is scary and I don't know what will happen. I do thank the stars for my friends and (most of) my family and of course for my greatest gift of all- my wonderful partner Chris. I am not unaware of ungrateful I am just a scared little kitten doing my best to make it across this room full of rocking chairs.

Stay tuned and send your love......

Tuesday, August 4, 2009


For those new folks who are joining our story already in progress.....well it might make more sense to read from the beginning but then again it could be fun to just jump right into the middle. That is how I tend to live my life so I guess jumping in the deep end works for my blog readers as well.

First I have to thank everyone for taking a peek at this blog and wanting to learn a little bit more about me and my story. I appreciate the comments and the support. Please feel free to hit me with questions or comments or just lurk in the background and read along. I welcome you all!

So you would think with this being semi-unemployed I would have oodles of time to do nothing but blog however not having a job (or in my case more specifically an income) takes up gobs and gobs of time. Ok perhaps I could scale back on my Facebooking a bit but in my defence I have been able to grab a bunch of people from my network and ask them for leads while online. Not to mention catching up on my nieces activities and making sure I have completed every quiz FB has to offer.....alll VERY important uses of my time. Not to mention the Twitter debacle where my account was hacked so I had to delete and start new twitter account is @traceyherr10 if anyone cares to add me.

So what is my employment status exactly you ask? Well I do have a job but it is a sales job and I was getting a draw....which is basically getting paid in advance for commissions you will bring in. Once you get a deal then you balance your draw and get paid the difference. Well my company has killed all draws and so I now do not get an income ergo have no cash coming in the door. I had a 2 hour chat with my mortgage company about this yesterday (seriously) and in the end they decided that they don't really give a shit about my income (or lack thereof) and yes I do still need to come up with my mortgage payment. The good news is they don't care which orifice I pull it out of so I have -that- going for me which is nice.

I do get unemployment starting next week but I am here to tell ya $240 a week will NOT cut it so I am working hard core on flexing the power of my network and seeing what magic I can make happen for myself. I have been setting up interviews and filling out online apps until my eyes bleed so hopefully I will get good news soon.

In the meantime I do hope to gather a bigger audience here so if you guys like what you read and want more please pass it on to your friends and family (or Oprah, whatever) so I can keep spreading the Tracey love. It has actually been suggested I ask for letters/problem so I can do my wisdom dispensing thing a la Dear Abby so if you are game I am.....feel free to send me your comments/questions to and let me know how I can help. I am sooooooo much better at fixing other people's lives than my own. I only even damage myself so you have no worries. (evil laugh)

Ok back to my life.....I had a total meltdown this weekend and let the stress take over for awhile. I did this on purpose so come Monday I could suck it up and get back on the horse. You can't just stuff the rage, fear, panic dow forever and not express it so I'd rather fall apart when no one is looking then do a taaa-daaaa it's all better now move, dust myself off and get back at it. The bad news is that I was counting on falling apart and having Chris pick up the pieces but man plans and god this case god sent a swarm of rats and termites to smite my plans. My poor boy had to exterminate all these new room mates all weekend and by the time he got to my house on Sunday night the poor guy was nearly crippled. I felt soo sooooo bad cuz I was pretty fricking annoyed he wasn't there to babysit me but one look in his pain filled eyes just melted me and I just wanted to do everything I could to make him feel better. I hate it when its not all about me....except when its all about him.

I did work out most of the stress and am doing my best surfing to try and ride this wave until calmer waters roll in. I know I created this life.....and let me take a step back on this point for a second. Life sucks for a lot of people right now and there is a certain amount that is beyond our control- true. BUT for the most part we are ALL living the lives we created. Me? I like high risk, high reward and I let myself get distracted with the promise of things being greener on the other side of the fence (hence the 2 brief jobs before going back to my old job) and did not take care of business like I knew I should. much as it sucks I do own the fact that I created this mess and it is up to me to get myself the hell out of it. Which I will cuz....well, that is what I do. I WILL succeed cuz I have to, no other option really. Especially now that I have a wonderful man who wants to build a life together with me. The stakes just went up big time and I can't wait to reap the rewards of all our hard work. But now.....there is just work.

In this "down" time I am working for my current/former company on some assignments for my biggest client and I am using this time to do some behind the scenes stuff so stay tuned for that.

In the meantime I hope my new readers enjoy the archives and get caught up and thanks so much for every one's love and support.

And if you have a job lead for me!!