This week, I’m celebrating my 3rd Blogiversary! WOOOHOOOO!
While I am so excited that I’ve been blogging for 3 years, when I sat down to write this post, I had no idea what to write about. I looked up traditional 3rd anniversary gifts (something that Josh also looked up once I told him I was blocked — sometimes we’re so much the same person that it scares me), but that didn’t help.
For the 3rd anniversary, the traditional gift is leather, the modern gift is crystal, and the flowers are sunflowers, in case you were curious.
Since so much has changed in my life recently, I’ve decided to write this post about all of the things that have changed since my last Blogiversary. Sorry in advance that this post may turn into a compilation of other posts (something that my blogging buddy Bill has teased me about before…in the comments on this post right here!).
Pod No More
My ex/blog editor/bestie Josh and I had a podcast from fall 2019 to fall 2020. While I really struggled to find my rhythm with podcasting when we started it up, I had definitely gained some podcasting confidence. Then everything went downhill in 2020. Between COVID and both of us just feeling generally depressed, Josh and I decided that it just wasn’t the right time. We’re still besties and he still edits all of my writing (which doesn’t stress him out or frustrate him in the least…), but we just couldn’t make the podcast work at that time. Josh and I are considering starting up a new podcast eventually, but for right now, we remain podcast-less.
I finally did something that I had been considering for a while: I got my coaching certification. I’ve always enjoyed helping people, and after working with several life coaches, it seemed like something that would suit my personality and help me feel fulfilled. Back in February 2020, I decided that I was finally going to go for it. My coaching classes went from March-September 2020, and although it absolutely terrified me, I got through it.
Of course, in typical Renata fashion, I had a complete breakdown in the middle of the classes and realized how badly I did not want to have my own business. So I technically am not a practicing coach, but I did get my certification and learned some great lessons along the way. Plus, I proved to myself that I could do it, which is the most important thing.
Late in 2020, a lot of my dad’s family caught COVID. Unfortunately, this included my dad’s mom who passed away. I was very close to my Gommy as a child, and while we weren’t as close in recent years, I still saw and talked to her regularly. She was beyond sweet and beloved by so many people. She watched me and my cousins for much of our childhoods, so her loss hit our family hard. She passed away right before Christmas, making the holiday season tough. I’m looking forward to this holiday season where we’ve healed a bit and we’ll be able to spend our holiday together sharing fun stories about her without feeling so raw.
(Still a) Working Girl
This year, I reached a huge milestone.
Back when I got out of college, I started at a great company (the company my dad used to work for), but I wasn’t doing what I loved. Don’t get me wrong, I loved my last company. Before leaving my old company, I even wrote a hilarious piece of fiction with all of the inside jokes that our team had as a parting gift. I stayed at that company for 5 years until I finally found a job more closely aligned with what I want to be doing. I found them via Facebook ad and very forwardly reached out to ask if they were hiring. After several email exchanges, phone calls, and one signed contract later, I started on this new journey. Since I started my new job, I’ve learned so much. Not only am I learning all new skills, but I’m learning how to navigate working from home in my bedroom office with very little human interaction. This was such a great step in my career, and I feel so proud of myself that I found this job and got it all on my own.
Back in 2019, I stopped going to therapy when my company moved to a different office. Since then, I have realized how not ideal my last therapy experience really was. My previous therapist wasn’t aware of polyamory or bisexuality so I had to spend my time and money teaching her. She didn’t listen to me about the fact that I was childfree and invalidated my choice. She even made some of my mental problems worse. It was hard to see while I was in the situation because she was in a position of authority. I thought that she just had to know better than me.
Since the pandemic started and I had so many big life changes, my mental health started to decline and I decided that I should go back to therapy. I was grateful to be able to use the knowledge from that past experience to find a therapist that better suited me and my personality. I found a directory of therapists who were familiar with polyamory and chose a therapist near me (even though we only meet via Zoom). We’re still in the “get to know you” phase of our professional relationship, but we’re definitely a better fit and I think she’s helping me already.
We Got Our Rings!
Dan’s and my relationship timeline is a little messier than most. First we went from being polyamorous to monogamous, then we decided to get married and remain childfree, then Dan asked me to marry him in a very unceremonious way without a ring, which was perfect for me. For the first couple of years after he asked me, I didn’t want to even call him my fiancé. We’re still living with my parents and I didn’t want it to be a big deal. Considering my feelings on marriage, I didn’t plan on wearing an engagement ring, but Dan wanted to. So I bought Dan a ring and he proudly wore it for years until it lost its luster.
In the past year, he and I both found rings that we wanted online and bought them for each other. Since I gave Dan his first ring in a special way, I didn’t do anything big when I gave him his new ring (besides getting down on one knee ;)). My engagement ring and wedding band stayed in the cabinet where I could only see the box, but not the rings. Dan wanted to wait and do something special.
In June, Dan made me a mancala board and gave me my rings by putting them in one of the wells. I’m happy to be able to proudly wear my rings, although they don’t actually fit on my ring finger. Since I’ve lost a bit of weight, they fit my middle finger best. I could get them resized, but honestly, I kind of like them on my middle finger. And just look how pretty they are!!!
And his ring is pretty, too.
Okay, so it isn’t finished and published yet, but I still think this is a huge accomplishment. This year, I decided to work on my first book! It will be a sort of a self-help book with self-improvement and self-development knowledge that I share on my blog along with some worksheets that will help the reader to do some great work on their own. Stay tuned for progress on the book in the upcoming months and the Amazon release!
Thank you for sticking around my blog and supporting me the past three years! I appreciate each and every one of you. Here’s to another year hopefully with less chaos and more positive changes!