I Can Live Without You

When I was younger and “in love” with the flavor of the month I literally thought I couldn’t live without that person. And as I’ve gotten older I hear people telling me that the person I will spend the rest of my life with will be the one I can’t live without.

Well, what if I can live without him?

Think about it…

My boyfriend and I have had the conversation about spending the rest of our lives together. That’s the plan-till death do us part (lucky you, Kris). We’ve also had the conversation where I looked him dead in the face and said,

“I can live without you.”

Seriously. I’m not kidding.

But he wasn’t surprised. Why?

Because, he knows if anything ever happened to him or to us, I’d be okay. I’d move on or move forward with my life. And so would he if the roles were reversed.

Do I admit I’d be devastated if he just looked at me one day and told me to take a hike? Hell yes! I’d probably: 1. Eat and lay on the couch for weeks or 2. Live at a bar. Choices…

I just truly believe we can all live without people in our lives. Easier said than done, I know. But we’re all still standing, right? We’re still here, breathing after that terrible break-up we thought we’d neverrrrrr get over. Or that death in the family that came too soon.

None of us want to go through heartbreaks or heartaches, but we all end up coming out stronger in the end. It could take weeks, months, or even years, but we are stronger.

So this isn’t about whether we can or can’t live without someone. It’s about wanting to.

Following my bold statement of telling my boyfriend I could live without him, I said,

“But I don’t want to.”

Cue the “awwwws” and the “cheesy one liners.”

But I meant it, exactly how I said it.

Remember, we sometimes can’t imagine our lives without certain people in it. If and when that day comes, you can live without them. You will be okay.

Everything happens for a reason.

 

Cheers,

Laine

 

 

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Choosing To Have Kids Or Not

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Culture tells us that you go to college, you find the man of your dreams, you get married, you have kids, and you live happily ever after. Or at least that’s our world as I understood it.

I started to do just that.

I was in college, was dating a guy I thought I loved (ehh wrong), talked to him about us getting married and having kids, then realized… Holy shit, I don’t actually love this guy like I thought I did. So what happens? We break up and the vicious cycle continues. I find another guy I thought I loved (this time I actually really did love this one), but he doesn’t love me back. Womp womp.

The moral of those love (or love-less) stories is that I thought I was trying to take my next step in life. But I was really taking someone else’s. No one had ever actually told me I had to do it that way, but that’s how I always thought it was supposed to go down.

I touch on that a little in my blog post Momma Knows Best, But You Don’t Have To Listen To Her where you find out that I have now found the love of my life (I promise, this time it’s for real). But now it’s like where do we go from here?

So in order to move forth with that relationship (aka get married) he and I need to figure some things out first. Like… Do we want kids?

Yes. Kids.

Holy shit.

I mean I can barely take care of myself and my dog at the age of 25. And I can’t possibly know when OR if I’ll ever want children.

So WTF do I do?!

I could marry Kris (that’s the boyfriend’s name) tomorrow if we actually lived in the same state (that’s a whole ‘nother story), but before we even attempt to go down that road we HAVE to discuss this kid thing. So we did.

He’s a “probably not, don’t necessarily want to” kind of guy.

I’m an “I don’t think I want to, but how the hell could I know what I’ll want years from now”?

And I don’t.

I have absolutely no idea if I want children or not. I’m pretty sure (at least for now) that I don’t want kids. But I cannot look at someone with a straight face and say I’ll never have children. I just can’t.

But what gets me every time is that people outside of our immediate family ask when/if we’re going to have children. That’s an automatic, “I think you should have children” question.

Back up, yo!

Me choosing to have kids or not choosing, or hell not even knowing for sure what I want to do about kids is not your problem.

At the end of the day I’m choosing. I’m choosing what I want (or in this case, not knowing what I want).

With the help and understanding of Kris, his mom, and my sister, they have all made me realize what matters is that he and I are on the same page. No matter what that page is. If it makes sense to us, then that’s what it’ll be. If we choose to not have kids, then turn around in 10 years and have kids, then that’s what we’ll do.

Culture and the past way of doing things will not define me and how I live my life. I want what’s best for me and my significant other. I don’t want to try and please anyone else. I don’t want to do what everyone’s doing because that’s the way it’s always been done.

Have the bravery to speak up and decide for yourself what you want. Or hell, have the bravery to say, “You know what, no I don’t know what I want.” Don’t think you have to choose something because that’s how it’s supposed to happen.

March to your own drum and have a drink while you’re at it.

 

Cheers,

Laine

 

5 Steps to a Happier Life

 

I am no life coach. Nor do I have all the answers. I do, however, like to think that I have some life experience, and that I have made a lot of strides on this journey towards happiness.

Like I said, these 5 steps are not the end all be all and there’s no scientific formula behind them. These are purely “Laine’s” 5 steps to a happier life.

It worked for me. Maybe it could work for you too.

  1. Read. Read books that make you a better person whether that’s professionally, personally, emotionally, whatever tickles your fancy. The one book that has changed my life (no exaggeration) is You Are A Badass by Jen Sincero. This woman’s take on life and how to look at things with a different perspective truly changed me. It was a turning point in my life, and actually happened to be the thing that gave me the courage to start Cheers, Laine. Thanks Jen!
  2. Own an animal. I wouldn’t say I’m an animal person. Dogs were dogs. Cats were cats. They were cute, but to have my own was not a top priority of mine. Until I fell in love with my Lucy. I talk about her a lot and how she also helped me have a happier life in my blog, The Pitbull That Saved My Life. Having a dog is a love like no other. It’s my equivalent to a mother and her child. (I do acknowledge there is a major difference between the two). Having an animal shows you what it’s like to love and be loved unconditionally. The power of a dog’s love truly can heal people.
  3. Have a work life balance. Seriously. Stop working all those hours. Or if you can’t do that, have a certain amount of time everyday where you DON’T look at your email. Growing up I watched my parents stress and stress about work. I knew I never wanted that. I didn’t want to work 12 hour days every day, but let’s be real, that happens sometimes. So make the conscience effort to clear your mind of work, even if that means an hour a day. (And no, smarty pants, sleeping does not count as clearing your mind from work).
  4. Workout. Whatever that means to you. If that means walking your dog around the block, great! If that means doing Cross Fit, well done! Whatever type of physical activity you need to do, do it. Physical activity can literally improve your life, your health, your mind, everything. We all know it ain’t easy to workout, but little progress is better than none. So keep on choppin’.
  5. Understand yourself. It is critically important that we as individuals understand ourselves. If you know what makes you tick and what makes you do what you do, then you will be able to see more clearly. You’ll know what’s important and what’s not. I’ve come to realize that I am the way I am because of how I was raised, good or bad. I’ve also come to realize that I can change the way I think and view things as I begin to better understand myself. Understanding yourself will shape how you do things.

That’s all she wrote, folks.

What steps have you taken to a happier life?

 

Cheers,

Laine

21 Things You Should Do Every Day In Order To Be Happy

There is not an exact formula to what makes one happy. What makes me happy might not make you happy. But I promise a couple of these things will definitely help you on your quest to happiness. They did for me.

  1. Talk to someone you care about
  2. Compliment someone (and mean it)
  3. Write down 10 things you’re thankful for (don’t BS it either)
  4. Look good, feel good
  5. Shower (no shower Sundays are okay though)
  6. Read something, anything
  7. Drink more water
  8. Exercise
  9. Think happy thoughts
  10. Eat something healthy
  11. Get some good sleep
  12. Stop worrying about money
  13. Thank someone
  14. Smile
  15. Have a drink (vodka water lemon lime for me please!)
  16. Flirt with someone
  17. Laugh
  18. Cross things off your to-do list
  19. Do something out of your comfort zone
  20. Love yourself (YES!)
  21. Choose to be happy (and even more YES!)

 

Cheers,

Laine

2 Things To Do To Find Love

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I’m not going to bore you with my long (and I mean longggggg) story about my love life. In a nutshell, I’ve been in some type of serious relationship since I was 18. To those of you that know me, you’re probably shaking your head, thinking about all the idiots I’ve dated as well as how many times I was the idiot.

Well, I’ve been very single for about a year and half now after a very rough ending to a super serious (on my end) relationship. No, I haven’t stayed single because I was still in love! Initially, yes. But ultimately, I was enjoying the freedom, the party, the crazy, the stupid.

Since my “single girl swag” era, I have joined Match.com. Dun dun dun… Yes, I joined an online dating site. Welcome to the 21st century.

I joined back in July, with little expectations, other than I may or may not get a free dinner out of it or I might meet someone super cool. I did not join to find “the one” or to even find a man. I was trying to be open-minded in the dating scene.

You see, I’ve never really dated. He was always a friend that turned into a boyfriend, a random guy at a bar that turned into a serious relationship (which I would never recommend, by the way). But, this time I was actually going to TRY and date people, like a grown up would.

So off I went. Since July I’ve given my number to roughly ten guys and been on five dates (four guys total). Boy oh boy were those duds. But, that wasn’t the point. The point was for ME to try something new, step outside of my comfort zone, grow up (a tad).

In addition to my Match.com dates, I’ve also been on three more dates (sorry if you’re reading this), with a guy who happens to NOT be a Match.com stint. Luckily, he’s a friend of a friend, so I know he’s not crazy.

The first two dates were good. We talked the whole time, had a lot in common, I liked him. I was still trying out this whole open-mindedness thing. He was cool and I enjoyed hanging out with him. But I just didn’t feel “it” (whatever the eff “it” is).

After the second date I talked to a friend about him, dating, all the above. She told me that…

Love is a choice.

Which got me to thinking, “What was I doing?” Either I wanted to continue a relationship with the guy, or I wanted to continue to just get free dinners out of it. I actually thought about this for a while. Was I going on dates with him, or anyone for that matter, just to say I was going on dates?

Come the third date, everything changed. He may not have realized it (I’m sure he has now after reading this), but I was so giddy after the date it’s not even funny. I mean within the date itself, nothing was different. We didn’t act different. It was like a light bulb went off in my head and was like, “Laine, you like this guy, quit fighting it.”

I was not just going on dates anymore. I was choosing to bask in his company, to truly enjoy every second we were spending together. I hadn’t felt that in a long time.

Am I saying I love the guy, Jesus I barely know him. What I’m saying is that you must do two things in order to find love:

  1. Be open-minded.
  2. Choose to love.

I am NO expert on love, I promise you that. Hell, I barely know what the word means. But as I went through my 24-year-old single girl swag era and now am maturing (somewhat), I’ve found that these two things can and should lead you to it.

This thing between me and my non Match.com guy may not even work out, who knows, but it’s all about being open-minded, trying something new, and choosing to really, and I mean really, bask in the moment with the person.

 

Cheers,

Laine