i'm mrs. aly now

man, oh man, oh man, have i been itching to write and blog lately. maybe it's due to the fact that i have been officially dubbed 'aly edit' by my husband while i fix all his school papers and now his school paper articles about a sport that i only know a little bit about. whatever the reason is i miss it and i think i need it more in my life. i love being able to let all my thoughts and feelings flow through my words. i was always better with the written word because i find that i am so much braver and at times wittier than in real life. 

now if it were possible to catch the blogosphere up to date on my life i would do so, but the truth is i don't really care to. the most important thing is that i am now a married woman. october 13, 2015 my life changed and michael and i were sealed in the salt lake temple. it was the most perfect day. not a cloud in the sky and we had the most perfect outdoor reception much to the surprise of the nay sayers who tried to tell me that we should have a back up plan in case of inclement weather. honestly it was really really hard to not rub it in my sisters face that it was a perfect day. but it was my wedding and i had far more important things to do that day. 

i've learned a lot in the last 15 months. marriage is hard. marriage is wonderful. marriage is fun. marriage is scary. marriage i think can be described with every human emotion. you don't know what you are getting yourself into, but it is oh so worth it. getting to go to bed each night and wake up each morning with this man is the most amazing thing that i have in my life. he is my best friend and there is no on i would rather spend my time with day in and day out. and as much as i love spending time with him, there are times that there is no one else in the world that bugs me more than him. and that is because there is opposition in all things. michael and i have to endure the obnoxious things that we both do to one another to appreciate and love the good things that we have in our relationship. the amount of time that i am actually annoyed with my husband is rather small, because seriously homeboy is my all time favorite person. but the amount of time that i spend actively trying to annoy him is about 90% of the time we are together. just kidding. but only partly kidding. 

the craziest thing about being married to michael is that there are times when i am still so in awe that he loves me just as much as i love him. it boggles my mind that i found the person who thinks that i am the greatest. i consider it luck. i mean how lame is it that it took a stupid app like tinder to connect me to the man that i love. i really don't regret anything in my life, no matter how dumb or stubborn i was before michael, i would do it all again. i would take every heartache, every break up, every rejection because it led me to him. it made me that aly that i was that cold november evening in salt lake city when we first met. every stupid and seemingly pointless first date led to him. pure luck.

the craziest thing is i don't think he really knows just how much i love him. i don't even know how to let him know. so i try everyday to show him. he snuck into my world so quickly and filled in all the holes and cracks that i had been carrying around for years. making me realize my potential and my purpose. and i think that is the most important thing he has done. he brought with him the possibility of everything i have ever hoped and dreamt of. without sounding too cheesy and absolutely ridiculous, hell i'll say it anyway, michael saved me. he pulled me out of the muddy muck i had been slowly wading away in. he pulled me back to the light and cleaned me up. everything about the care he has shown me is heaven sent. 

okay enough mushy mush talk. 

right now i will vow to continue to blog. i'm going to continue to put my thoughts to laptop and ramble on and on just like i used to do. sometimes you need to just take a step away to realize that you didn't need to take a step away at all. this is something i need. i need to remember the i enjoy this and remember that i think i am entertaining. even if no one else gets any joy or feels any form of entertained, it is enough for me that i enjoy it. and that's all i really care about. 


there's this urge...

every once in a great while i get this weird urge to blog. 

i love to write and sometimes that urge to blog comes out whenever i watch some obscure indie film that netflix tells me that i might be interested in. somehow the new wave inspired, wannabe 90's music that all these films inevitably have, makes me narrate whatever is happening in my life, to myself, and i think that it's worth blogging about. is that weird? although i think i'm to the point in my life where i don't really have the energy to care whether or not my life, or train of thought is normal.

when i was 24 or 25 maybe, i somehow found this stash of confidence that was tucked deep in the corner of myself.  i remember thinking that it was a discovery that i really could have used a decade earlier, but i was going to take it and run with it. and run with it i did. some would have even said that i was a little conceited and full of myself. to those individuals i would say you are correct. i did get a little hot shotty. but the good news is, like all good things, this too would come to an end. 

not a total end, just a backseat. like instead of looking at myself in the mirror everyday and thinking that i was the most beautiful of my friends slash family, i look at myself and think ...

well this is what almost 30 looks like.

poor aly, is what you must be thinking. but don't worry, it's not that bad.  i will still be the first to tell you that i am amazing at a lot of things. 

i would say that 5-6 years of self centered-ness and conceit is a good run. the only time it got a little annoying to myself was whenever a relationship, no matter how long, would end.  not having the luxury of self doubt during those times was not a pleasant existence. rather than thinking ...

what's wrong with me?

i was plagued with thoughts of ...

what's wrong with him?  

again you must be thinking 'poor aly', but really it was okay. i think i shocked my sister when her and i were having a 'heart to heart' which really should be called 'char telling aly what to do'. she stated that she wished that i could see myself as everyone else around me sees me.  everyone loves and wants me to be happy. i told her that i already know how awesome i am ... my problem was that i was meeting losers who didn't know how amazing i really was. not what she was expecting.

i've heard many times in my life 'fake it, till you make it!'  unfortunately the old adage really shouldn't translate into every aspect of life. in my field of work ... cosmetology ... that should never be your take. a bad haircut is a bad haircut no matter how hard you work at faking that it is a good haircut to your guest. i also think faking it till you make it, doesn't apply to dating happiness. actually i don't feel like dating and happiness really go hand in hand. the act of going on dates with different people often never brings happiness. an endless stream of first dates, with far and few between second dates can really wear on a person and i don't think ever brings much happiness. at least not from my experiences. 

i think the true happiness that you shouldn't have to fake is the kind you can find in an actual relationship. while relationships are hard and you won't always be happy, you voice your frustrations and work it out. you compromise. you share. you experience. and if you have to fake your happiness or interest ... you might be in the wrong relationship. but what do i know? 

i am currently in the midst of my personal record for dating ... meaning that we have been together for a whopping 29.5 weeks. that's 199 days. or 7 months and 25 days. however you would like to look at it. michael is great. i knew we were meant to be within the first few hours of us meeting. i'm usually the first to make fun of people when they say that sort of thing. but then it happened to me and i understood what all those people were talking about. talk about humble pie. now i know why i had to endure all those horrible dates and ridiculous relationships. i had to be broken down a little to be found by michael. who repaired those dings to my self confidence worn down by one crappy ex in prison and a 2.0 that used me cause i let him. both really great stories for a later time. 

so, here's to no more faking it!



just as a disclaimer i started this post like 2 months ago...just had to still share with ya'll. 

i decided to kick off the last year of my 20's with a half marathon! now mind you this took a lot of planning. i began about 6 months ago running a little here and there. then with 16 weeks before the race i got serious and found a training program and naturally i made a really cute training schedule to hang on my fridge. 
so naturally the hard part was over right? just kidding.

seriously though i was pretty strict with myself this time around and only missed a day or two of running. that is until 2 weeks before the race i got strep throat and was sick for a whole week and couldn't run at all. 

i missed my last really long run of 12 miles and could only etch out 4. i was really disappointed and discouraged. i had trained so hard for 14 weeks and to feel so week and not getting the miles i wanted, made me really nervous about the race.

the morning of the race my roommate and i were up at 3:30 and out the door by 4:10.
we got to the buses and immediately found my sisters to ride up together. it was freezing up the canyon and as anticipated the lines for the port a potty's were ridiculous and cutthroat. once we were settled we had just a few minutes until race time. so naturally we took some selfies.
the race started and only after 2 minutes we crossed the starting line. i was feeling pretty good. my hands were freezing but Come On Eileen by Dexy's Midnight Runners was pumping and how can that not put you in a good mood? as runners passed me i still felt good. i had my music, my new fit belt and my pace was on point. the first mile was a breeze. same as for mile 2. i stopped to use the port a potty and i was off again. about a quarter mile after mile 2 the unthinkable happened. i fell. i placed my left foot down knowing that the small little ripple in the asphalt was going to be trouble. and sure enough, i put my foot down, my ankle rolled and i went down. all the way down. i rolled over and was facing all the oncoming runners. luckily a sweet older lady stopped to help me up and help me walk over the side. tears were welling up in my eyes and all i could think was 'i've trained so hard, this can't be happening. i have to finish. i can't stop.' this sweet lady asked if she needed to walk with me to the next aid station at mile 3. i told her i was okay and off she ran to let them know i was coming. i walked for about a quarter mile before i decided to try and run on it. i started slow and eventually got a good pace going with only a little pain. i made it to the aid station and felt okay enough to go on. 

at mile 5 i realized the i had also scraped my knee and was concerned about my new running pants of all things. i lifted up my pant leg to find my knee bleeding a little and my skin stuck to my pants. so of course after realizing i had hurt my knee too, i could feel it every step i ran. i made it to the next aid station at mile 5 and asked for pain meds or anything and was literally sorely disappointed. the nice lady told me that i could either wait with her for the 'sag wagon' thus forfeiting the race or i could run 2 more miles to the mouth of the canyon where they had an ambulance and possibly some ibuprofen. i opted to take my chances and keep running.

the rest of the canyon was pretty decent. turns out running downhill is super easy at times. i had some of my best mile times despite my injuries. i made it out the canyon and was met with powerade and finally some ibuprofen!  i crossed the street and headed for the golf course. never had i been so happy to run the golf course! i am so glad that char, natatlie, denise and i had run that portion of the race a few times during our training. it was almost a breeze and went by so quickly that i barely remember much of it. 

when i stopped to stretch around mile 9 (which was impossible to do without hurting my ankle) i  realized that my gps was playing mind games with me and telling me i was half a mile further than i really was! i continued on. getting to the hill around mile 10 wasn't a surprise this time and i was ready for it. half way up my ankle started yelling obsenities at me and i wanted to stop so badly until a spectator really did keep me going with her kind words and i made it up!  

right before mile 11 i ran past a women who looked to be struggling with each step. she didn't have earphones in, so as i ran past i told her that she was doing awesome. when i stopped to walk a little ways ahead she caught up to me. we walked together and i learned that she was a mom of 11, had spent the night before in the hospital with her daughter who had just had a baby, and that she had lost her husband to cancer 4 years earlier. i almost began to cry as she told me that she knew he was with her pushing her forward. such an inspiration to me that i no longer felt bad for me and my swollen ankle. 

as i continued on with her for another mile i got a second wind and kicked it into gear for the last 1.1 miles. said goodbye to my new friend and turned the corner. but alas at 12.5 miles i hit a major wall. i just wanted to be done and even that last 0.6 miles felt like a whole 6 miles. it was the bearded man who had joined his granddaughter that got me through. coaching me to just walk to the next street corner and then run to the finish line. when he began to run again he turned to me and while waving me toward him he chanted 'come on, come on' until i began to run again and turn the corner to the final stretch. 

i bounded the corner to see my sister katie cheering me on and crouched to take pictures of me as i turned into the finish line alley. i clung to every bit of energy and strength i had and increased my pace into a sprint. i heard my sister char cheering and running beside me behind the barricade. i finally saw the time and was stoked to see that i was in fact 8 minutes faster than my first half marathon and began to smile. i did it! i finished on a swollen ankle and beat my time! as they placed the finishers medal around my neck i reached down to take off my shoe and sock to finally see the damage to my ankle. my sisters doted on me and got me some yummy kneader's french toast and my mom handed me a bag of ice that i had requested at mile 6 when i text to tell her about my fall. as we sat on the grass eating and talking i was so ecstatic that i finished! i wasn't even thinking about my sore ankle and aching knee. i was just so proud of myself to finishing.

we did it! i am so happy that i got to do this with my sisters and my roommate. it was so nice to have support and people to check up on me with my training. 

i really wanted to wear my medal everywhere i went just so i could show off how cool i really am.

this is how i spent the majority of the day after my race. icing and elevating my ankle and watching movies while eating the remainder of the junk food from my birthday party, which included peanut m&m's and red vines. perfect! i only left my house with my friend morgan to go the strawberry days to get a corn dog, diet coke and strawberries & cream. all of which were the only things that i wanted to really eat that day. 


it pains me to continue, but it hurts worse to stop.

i found this quote today and it just felt right. sometimes the very thing that brings us pain is the very thing that we need in our life to keep the real hurt away. the hurt that is often accompanied by sobbing and rocking back and forth in the fetal position. keeping that feeling of loneliness that we can all let sink into our bones at times, at bay. no one is exempt from that feeling. at one point or another everyone will feel that in their lives. that's how god created this life to work. we can't know the feeling of complete joy unless we know the feeling of despair and pain. it's a delicate balance this life. sometimes people have a better way of coping with these hard times and they only let their pain show to a few people if they show it to anyone at all. but there's others that let everyone know they are suffering for whatever reason and show the world that they are vulnerable. being vulnerable is a beautiful thing. being able to let others into your world and let them see that you are not perfect and that life has it's hold on you at times. letting people see what makes you hurt and what makes you afraid. letting people in. no walls dividing you and the world. it's a beautiful thing when we can let that wall crumble down. 

we can't control everything and sometimes letting that control go is the hardest part of pain and hurt. 

accepting the we are weak and that it's okay to not always be strong. 

strength comes in many different forms than what we generally think. there is strength in accepting the end of a relationship. there is strength in being a shoulder for someone to cry on when you yourself need a shoulder to cry on. there is strength in forgetting your hurt or pain and serving those around you. there is a strength in pushing your body to continue when at it's breaking point. there is strength in standing up for something you believe in, even if that means isolation and loneliness. we all have strength inside us. it's our catalysts of that strength that differ. the why of our strength is what makes us who we are. what we are willing to fight for? what we are willing to accept even when it seems excruciatingly impossible?

if we all had a little more sensitivity to the battles that everyone else is fighting, the world would be a little easier. but this life wasn't meant to be easy, so we adapt. whether it is a positive adaptation or a negative adaptation is up to each of us. 


till you start looking back

i will warn you this is going to be a serious post.  it's been a serious couple of days and i am in much need of an outlet for my thoughts.  hence coming to my blog.  the one place that i can just spew out my thoughts and the best part is it doesn't talk back or roll its eyes.

i am trying to find a word to describe whatever it is that has crawled into my body and conquered.  it's not sad, it's definitely not happy.  it's almost empty.  it's as if this cosmic void has slammed into me at warped speed and swallowed me whole.  

on thursday we placed my dad in an assisted living facility.  

he fought.  
he cried.  
he screamed.  
he simply didn't want to be there.  

it breaks my heart to know that he has some sort of cognitive response to being left behind in a new environment where he is at least 20 years younger than all the other patients. i went to visit him for an hour on monday and found him on the floor.  he had fallen out of his recliner and tipped it over.  he looked so confused and helpless.  not knowing how he got on the floor or why his chair was sitting on its side.  we got him upright and moved the chair back.  he showed me around the facility a little bit then it was time for lunch.  getting him to sit was difficult.  when he was finished getting him out of the chair was difficult.  i helped him to the bathroom then it was back to the recliner to watch an old bones episode while he fell asleep.  i slipped out and drove away.  i don't know how this has become my normal so quickly.  i just can't wrap my brain around what he has left to do on this earth.  why is the lord keeping him here?  what do we still need to learn from this experience that we already haven't learned in the last 5 years of dealing with his disease?  maybe we will never know what exactly is keeping him here and we just enjoy the time we have left with him.  

i talked to my ex today.  he called me from jail to tell me that he might have to stay there for a week or two to wrap up a few charges after his 10 months in prison.  i knew it was him calling me and i still answered.  i wanted to hear what he had to say.  he apologized for the way he treated me while we were together and during our 6 month break up.  he told me he thought about me everyday.  he thanked me for never putting 'return to sender' on his letters.  he asked me about life.  threw in subtle inquiries of my dating status.  asked if he could make me dinner sometime when he was settled in his new place.  then he began to explain that he wasn't trying to get back together with me.  that's not what he wants.  he just hopes that someday i can forgive him and that we could be friends.  i don't know if i can believe his apology.  i mean for the first time in the 1 year and 9 months that i have known him he is actually sober and clean of drugs.  if he doesn't want me back, then he has no motivation in lying to me.  so can i really trust what he is saying?  it's just a lot to take in.  for some reason i thought that him getting out now and not october like i originally thought, i would have a game plan ready to ensure i stay away from him, but all it meant was that i ignored it.  i just don't want to have to deal with him ever really.  


so much to talk about

let's start off by pretending that someone still reads blogs anymore.  i swear instagram took over the necessity of blogs a year or so ago.  if that's true i will still write to make myself feel better about my life.  writing is still one of my favorite creative outlets.  always will be.

this weekend i realized that the good lord works in such mysterious ways.  my dearest and bestest friend jessie ellen got married this weekend!  it was such a great and spectacularly snowy weekend!  i got to drive to star valley wyoming with the soon to be bride to join in the festivities in a pre wedding reception in afton on thursday.  well a few days before i broke out in shingles.  yes that one condition that usually only old people get...not 28 year old girls!  i was able to conceal those for the reception and all was well.  later that night while driving home i started to feel a little under the weather.  sore throat, body aches and fever type of sick.  so when i got home, i curled up in my mom's bed, yes my mom and i share a bed when i stay in farmington.  it's really cute.  i woke up friday morning and was spent!  there was no way i was going to be able to go to work that day.  i called in sick and spent the rest of the day in bed, hoping and praying that i would be okay for the wedding the next day.  

this is where i will tell you that jessie getting married came at me with conflicting feelings.  i was so beyond happy that someone that i love dearly had found their dream come true in the form of a cowboy!  james is exactly who jessie was meant to be with.  they are perfect together and after spending almost all day with them on thursday i can tell that he just ADORES her.  as he should.  i couldn't ask for anything better for jess.  but it also brings to mind the fact that once jess gets married she will be moving to star valley and leaving me.  of our 5 bffs growing up, jess and i have been the single ones for so long that i was always comforted in the fact that we had each other in our singlehood.  now it's just lil old me to hold up the banner of singledom with our lil 'rat pack'.  

moving on.  i woke up early saturday (with a swollen eye) to go and spend a lil more time with jess as i did her wedding hair.  i'm so glad that i have such amazing friends that have been such good examples to me throughout my life.  as the snow came down i tried to calm jessie down and reassure her that her hair would hold up despite the snow.  after a few pics and helping her carry her beautiful wedding dress to the car one last time, i gave her one last hug as jessie jensen and sent her on her way to the temple to be sealed to her sweetie.

i on the other hand went home and slept for a bit, got ready and headed to the temple.  i got to chat with my dear friend becca in the waiting room.  the snow was met by rain as we trekked out to wait for the bride and groom.  watching jessie come out of the temple with her new husband was so exciting.  she looked absolutely radiant!  i was so proud to be her friend in that moment.  

the luncheon made me bawl like a lil baby.  to hear people that love jess and james so much talk about their struggles getting to their wedding day was so sweet and touching.  but i could also feel my eye swelling even more and my throat turning into a tightening vice.  one a few hours until the reception and a few hours at the reception stood between me and my bed!  i can do this!  becca and i drove together and when we walked in we were amazed.  jessie and her team had transformed this hundred year old barn into a country fantasy!  everything was absolutely perfect!  jessie and james were beaming from ear to ear!  the reception was a whirl of chatting with friends and family and ignoring my swollen quasimodo eye, crusty shingles and sore throat.  the bride rode off on her beloved horse mardi gras and the husband and wife were off.  

waking up sunday morning it was clear that something was wrong.  i called my sister crying.  that's when you know something is really wrong with me.  and for once i listened to her when she told me to go to instacare.  i in fact have strep.  so...shingles, swollen eye, and strep all in one weekend.  awesome right?  actually yes it is.  i was so stressed and worried about being broken hearted and sad this weekend that the lord gave me 3 sicknesses to distract me!  is that a twisted way of thinking or what?  well if it is, i don't care.  i like to think that i was given all this to help me through a hard time in my life.  so this is what my day has looked like...
i think my shingles are spawning and expanding...so that will be pretty awesome to see how that progresses.  

the point is that there is life after being turned into the only remaining single friend in a group.  i don't think that i ever considered me being the last one.  i kinda always figured i would have been married by now, but i guess i haven't gotten to that chapter yet.  i'm not a huge fan of skipping ahead while reading so i'll just wait out the boring descriptive chapters like when i had to read grapes of wrath in college.  still don't know what the book is about.  

moral of the story, don't get shigles, strep or a swollen quasimodo eye on a wedding weekend.    


h to the o p e

'Beginnings are usually scary, endings are usually sad, but it's what's in the middle that counts. So when you find yourself at the beginning, just give hope a chance to float up. And it will.'

that is exactly what i am banking on right now.  today one thing ended.  the thing that i have been waiting to end for the last 20 months.  the only problem is it lead to something else beginning and i'm not a huge fan of it.  so all i have thought today is this quote from hope floats.  i guess i just need to let hope happen.  i'm a huge fan of being in control and i learned today that no matter how fair, or how right you think something is, you really have no control over things in your life.  it isn't up to us how things will ultimately work out.  all you can do is take that blind step of faith and hope that it works out.  a thing that i'm discovering i'm not a fan of.  

today the emotional dam broke and i allowed myself one meltdown.  the reality that my dad is sick and how much i care about him hit me and i couldn't sit back and let some person who i have deemed not a good person take away power and control.  but ultimately i had to let go.  i had to come to the conclusion that i have no control and i had to trust that others around me were making the right choice.  it's funny how being in a room with your old bishop who is also your brother's lawyer, can remind you that these feelings that i have toward this person are only hurting me in the end.  

what the middle of this whole process has shown me is that my family is full of really amazing people.  i would do anything to make sure that they are happy and feel loved by me.  in the end, what else do you have if you don't have the people who have known you the longest and most intimately by your side?