This weekend had that Je ne sais quoi magical feeling about it. By the time Sunday evening rolled around, I felt refreshed, refilled, and ready for anything.
But First: Exposure Therapy
After laying low, closing in on the last Harry Potter movies, and making a simple spinach pasta dish at home Friday night, The Man and I set out to North Fork Trail for our weekly long run. Funnily enough, the “run” was treacherous for me and might not be what you’d expect on a “delicious” weekend such as this post is titled. But I’ve come to learn that’s how things work sometimes.
Nick had to piece a few trails together to total my desired 12 miles, and parts of the route were new to him, too. The first two miles were at a much steeper incline than he’d anticipated, and it was kicking my butt from the get-go. I had already felt low-energy with a rapid heart rate and a negative mindset, and this challenge wasn’t helping. I wanted to give up, call it a day, and just go home and eat a cheeseburger in bed (which isn’t necessarily wrong!).
I have a lot of PTSD-like symptoms when it comes to hiking mountain trail and feeling not good enough. It’s already unpleasant to feel like two years’ of running isn’t enough to feel like you’re in shape. Add deep wounds to the mix like feeling unlovable and abandoned, and you’re ready for another panic attack. Thankfully this amazing universe brought me Nicholas, a master at calming me in the most compassionate and understanding of ways. He reminds me that none of this is mandatory, that if it doesn’t feel fun or challenging in the good sense, then it isn’t worth it. He let me feel all of those anxious emotions and then helped recalibrate our plan.
We ended up running/hiking 7.5 miles. After releasing all of that negative energy, I felt much more at ease. Not only that, but being around an emotionally safe and present person can really calm an anxious person down. It’s amazing how that works!
By the end of our trek, my legs were shot, but my heart was happy. I’m sure you’ve heard of the concept of exposure therapy. Well this was exposure to some of my greatest fears: not being good enough or lovable, being abandoned, or causing someone to get frustrated/angry. Within the first 20 minutes I was facing all of those (perceived) fears head-on, and The Man was able to quell those fears once again. While it can be exhausting, exposing ourselves in this way can be the most rewarding.
In short… Saturday’s “run” was more therapy than anything else, helping cleanse me of some seriously harmful, irrational self-talk.
After coming home to take a hot bath and relax, we decided to use a gift certificate to Barolo Grill that we’d been saving for when the time felt right.
We sat at the bar and enjoyed some fantastic wine and conversation. All I could think about was pasta with a cream sauce and mushrooms! Thankfully, they had the perfect dish on the menu:
It might not look like the most appetizing meal, but I swear it was! Cavatelli is not my favorite pasta shape, but the sauce and mushrooms were divine. Nick and I shared it, along with this potato gnocchi with crab:
SO much yum!
To round out the evening of pure indulgence, we ordered two desserts! Panna cotta and a chocolate mousse cake.
Sunday morning, we cuddled up on the couch with our coffee to go over some finance-y things. Harper was not feeling it!
She decided she’d wedge herself between us to break up the boring money talk.
Look at those puppy-dog eyes! She finally convinced us that we should take her on her own adventure.
On our 4.5-mile trek around the neighborhood, we saw this little guy going to town on Halloween leftovers. Happy squirrel!
Afterward, Harps was out like a light. All day. She was exhausted, which not only means she was a happy pup… but we were happy puppy parents!
In the afternoon, I was in serious need of some INFJ time, which usually translates to alone time, reading a book, or watching a show (this time it was The Office) and kind of staring off into space mentally. After an hour or two, I was invigorated with whatever that zombie mode does for my brain… and I was ready to organize the house and get some chores done. I did three loads of laundry and cleaned while Nick made the most outstanding veggie chili anyone has ever tasted!
Served over wild rice with a dollop of plain Siggi’s Greek yogurt and some fresh cilantro… I thought I’d died and gone to heaven.
We finally finished all 8 Harry Potter movies! It’s safe to say that watching the series is even better as an adult… and now I want to re-read the books, too. Jo Rowling is such an exquisite storyteller and master of character, not to mention a true philosopher. Le sigh.
How was your weekend?