The Good, The Bad & The Downright Ugly

Last week I was mulling around on Instagram and saw how an acquaintance published the top ten highlights of her year via her IG story. Man, what an exciting and adventurous 2018 she had visiting new, exotic countries and parachuting out of airplanes.

I was so thrilled looking at her photos that I started going through my own social media 2018 photo History in an attempt to compile my own Top Ten Highlights. The compilation didn’t go quite the way I thought it would because as I scrolled through my pictures I realized that some of my funniest and best moments were not actually captured on camera. They were just sweet, tiny moments that might have taken place during a conversation, something my husband may have said to me, or maybe even the way he looked at me; or even that time in June, on our romantic getaway to Montauk, when I fell flat on my ass after attempting to ride a bicycle, even though I had not ridden a bike since I was 16 years old – that’s almost 3 decades ago.

I did take a ton of pictures though and I was reminded of the good, the bad and, yes, even the ugly experiences. What I also realized was that 2018 was a pretty good year. Yeah, there were both highs and lows, as with most things, but the highs far outweighed the lows.

I measure my success at my ability to smile at my memories as opposed to cringing. The cringe-worthy moments did exist but I am thankful that I can count them, on one hand, and I wouldn’t have enough fingers to count the happy, laugh-out-loud moments and the number of times I have paused and thought about how lucky I am.

The Bad

Scrolling through my memory bank I realize that most of the time I was at my ‘unhappiest’ was while I was at work – either standing in the Courtroom or sitting at my desk. The practice of law has become a daunting task for me. I feel absolutely ungrateful for feeling this way. How many people have I met who want to go to Law School? Or want the opportunity to capture an audience with their wit and intellect in a Courtroom? I used to be one of those people, I used to look forward to “winning” in Court, I used to want to stay up all night and read the precedents in order to prepare my case. I use to practice my oral arguments in my mirror, my pose, my stance, everything – going over all that needed to be said over and over and over until it was perfected. I used to look forward to the back and forth banter with opposing counsel. Hell, I used to get a kind of high from it, but now, now it’s just meh.

I am ashamed to admit that my zeal is gone. Not sure when it left or how it left but what is certain is that it has left and I am not even sure I want to go searching for it. Nowadays, I get headaches, real serious headaches when a case gets too complicated. I am just not intrigued anymore. Could this feeling possibly be from burnout? Maybe! I don’t have a solution for this and I am really not trying to find one, I am also not trying to analyze anything, I am just speaking my truth. Further, I am not trying to make any promises to myself that I am going “to figure it out’ in 2019.

What I know for sure is that years of practicing law have allowed me to develop great skill in the Courtroom and I am a damn good litigator. I will always do my best for my clients; always! However, if I am being completely honest with myself I am over it. I wish I had another means to make money, a means by which I could be extremely enthusiastic and happy while pursuing my passion and bringing home the bank.

The Ugly

In May of 2018, I tried something called Velashape. Velashape is a non-invasive treatment which is “supposed to” result in the reduction of cellulite. Yes, the ugly came in the form of a ton of cellulite on what used to be my gorgeous legs.

I once had voluptuous, long, thick, toned legs. Legs I use to get all kinds of compliments on. I lived in mini-skirts, dresses, and short shorts because I loved my legs. I feel like I had these beautiful legs as recently as last year and then out of nowhere came the hideous cellulite. Like a ton of them, both on the front and back of my thighs. (Sigh)! Was it age? Was it my food consumption? Was I not doing enough cardio? Should I try to squeeze another leg day into my already tight weight training workout routine? Maybe I should consider taking up running?

I did my research and learned about a cellulite treatment called Velashape, further research led to a reasonably priced aesthetician, only a few miles away from my office, who would be able to perform these treatments. I was excited! I was going to get my gorgeous cellulite free legs back in time for Summer.

The research said results varied but typically started to show between 3 to 6 sessions, so I purchased the package with 6 sessions of Velashape treatment. I did 2 of my 6 weekly sessions and on the morning of my third session I got a call from the aesthetician saying that the Velashape machine had broken down the night before, that it was in the process of being fixed and she would call me as soon as it was up and running again. This happened during the third week of May, by the time mid- June rolled around and the machine still had not been fixed, I went in, canceled the rest of the sessions, got a full refund and that was the end of that.

My Velashape treatment was an epic fail. I thought of trying to find another Spa to get it done, Lord knows there are scores of them in Manhattan that provide such services, but I kind of saw the breaking down of the machine as a sign to embrace my cellulite and let go off of my vanity. Truth be told, I detest my cellulite, like seriously. I can’t stand them but I used my refund to pay for Blog Writing Classes, which I did from July to August, and I couldn’t be happier with that choice.

The Good

My marriage has not been without its challenges, we hadn’t lived together before we got married and the first year was, to say the least, a bit tough, the 2nd year was better and by golly this year I think we finally found our groove.

Time spent with my husband has been part of the best memories of my year. We seemed to have unintentionally found a way to read each others’ minds and act accordingly. He still gets frustrated when I stretch him too thin socially, he’s not much of a people person, like I am, but if he doesn’t feel like going somewhere he just won’t go and these days I’m over getting mad about it and I’ll just go by myself.

I also now realize that he wants his time to himself, no social events, no movies, no family time, he just wants to lie by himself in the man-cave part of our house and watch his conspiracy theorist documentaries. When I visit the man-cave I pick up on when it’s my cue to leave and I do so without protest and give him his space. It has been a really good year for our marriage and I hope we continue to grow in the same manner we did in 2018.

Similarly, I hope to grow as an individual in the upcoming year. The New Year is always a time for reflections and resolutions but this year I won’t do too much of that lest I get caught up in the “what could have been” and the “what I hope will be” instead of just living in the present and enjoying the here and now.

Happy New Year everyone!

This past weekend we attended a Christmas Ball.ย 

103 thoughts on “The Good, The Bad & The Downright Ugly

  1. I’m late of course as we’re about to go STRAIGHT into V-Day next week. But the pic is so cute. So proud of you and your accomplishments for 2018 which I think for all of us reared some good, bad and ugly moments but we got over them and now Viola! 2019. And there will be times like that this year, but I pray it’s more good than anything else. =)

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Wow, you look gorgeous in this Christmas photo! I remembered watching a TV episode of Tyra Banks as she discussed her cellulite problems. She invited some professionals to demonstrate how to use a device. Hope you have a wonderful new year!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi Theresa….I have been doing target leg exercises in an effort to eradicate the problem. Hopefully by this Summer I’ll be able to see the results. Thanks so much for chiming in. All the best for 2019. ๐Ÿ™‚

      Liked by 1 person

  3. I understand about the burnout. I’m that way with homeschool now. Over it! But I will try to stick it out. That’s great that you found a way to be happy with your husband. It’s tough when they are so introverted. I’m always amazed by men who enjoy socializing!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Me too! Always amazed when I meet men who have personalities similar to mine and know how to work a room. I like to watch them.

      The burnout is real. I, however, spoke at length with my mentor since the year started and he had a few great suggestions for me, which I tend to implement so who knows I just might stick with the lawyering. ๐Ÿ˜‚. I am very good at it so let’s see what happens for 2019. ๐Ÿ™‚

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Awww beautiful photo! You seem like you had an interesting 2018. Itโ€™s funny you mentioned the photo highlights because I was telling my sister the same thing. When Iโ€™m having loads of fun I tend not to take out my phone and take photos. Also Law…I can relate. I done my undergrad in Politics but planned to go to Law School to become a solicitor. I worked as a Court Clerk for nearly 2 years to gain experience within the field doing Family & Civil law and it was such a turn off. The work load was ridiculous and being in court felt tedious. I definitely gained a lot of skills and expose from working in a court so I try to see it as a positive. I quit my job last year and it was the most freeing thing Iโ€™ve done in a long time. I wish you all the best with that situation and hope you have an amazing 2019 ๐Ÿ’œ

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Awwww, Ash! Thanks for the love and the word of encouragement. I have a feeling everything will work out. It always does. We just have to watch for the signs and listen to our bodies when it tells us to take it easy. ๐Ÿ™‚

      Thanks for your commentary. ๐Ÿ’•

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Hang in there! I think early mid-life is an incredibly difficult time, especially for women. I read a survey of older adults that asked them what their favorite decade of life was and they overwhelmingly chose their 50s! Perhaps something to look forward to!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. This!!!!

      Thank you for saying this. I oftentimes wonder if I’m going through some mid-life crisis or something. Jeez! My tolerance for the BS is at an all-time low.๐Ÿ™‚

      I’m so happy to hear that the 40s aren’t necessarily the best decade. I use to think that it was.

      Your comment has given me hope. Thanks for stopping by and offering a bit of ‘pick me up’. ,๐Ÿ’“

      Like

  6. ๐Ÿค” Hmm. I thought that people never forgot how to ride a bike since the experiences are embedded in one’s muscle memory.

    By the way, Instagram can make a lot of people feel inadequate due to the fact that not everyone has photos of their positive experiences readily available for upload.

    Do have yourself a blessed 2019.

    Liked by 3 people

  7. This picture is super cute Rakelle! I’m glad the machine broke down! We (women) already do too much to maintain our beauty. Plus, you’re gorgeous with/without cellulite (seemingly). Hope you have a WONDERFUL New Year!

    Liked by 2 people

  8. #1. Gorgeous photo of the 2 of you! #2. Cellulite is a real bitch. #3. I’m so very sorry you’re feeling burnout with your career! Maybe soon a really exciting and intriguing case will cross your desk and it will light the fire of enthusiasm once again! #4. I’m so happy you and hubby have found your groove! So many couples do not. What a blessing! Happy New Year! โค

    Liked by 2 people

    1. 1) Thank you so much, Deb ๐Ÿ˜Š.
      2) Who you telling?! Don’t I know it.
      3) Who knows? Maybe! I might find that spark again.
      4) I’m grateful too. Despite our personality differences, he’s a good man.

      Liked by 2 people

  9. Happy New Year.
    I’m glad it’s not just me. I don’t take a lot of photos, because I like to be in the moment and make memories. Without them, photos nothing. Just a pretty picture, but it’s the memories that add emotions to the photos. So recently, I wanted to go through specific pictures and to reminisce. I was shocked to realize there were just a few photos that really didn’t tell the whole story. It IS those un-captured moments that you cling on for forever.

    Liked by 3 people

  10. Schnazzy!!

    Youโ€™re burned out on practicing law – I totally get that and feel darned near it (well, working IN law) myself after this past year. Itโ€™s good that you recognize it and arenโ€™t pressuring yourself one way or another…youโ€™ll figure it out in time. Answers to dilemmas tend to surface on their own when theyโ€™re darned good and ready.

    Cellulite. For me, itโ€™s an unfortunate genetic side effect that Iโ€™ve suffered from since my teenaged tears. Thanks, mom. And grandma. And…

    Anyway, you learn to live with it and adjust for it, just like the ever growing list of body flaws I seem to add to every time I turn around.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Yup….I’ll figure it out. The great thing is that my Law degrees will get me in many doors, there are several different industries and different fields that I can work in. I already started doing my research ๐Ÿ˜‰.

      Another reader commented that cellulite is usually genetic but for me that’s not the case, my Mom is 70 years old and has none. My Aunts don’t have any either so….I’ll figure out that one too. Things usually work out for the best.

      Liked by 2 people

      1. I’m sure you’ll be successful in whatever you choose to do!

        Growing up, I was a stick figure – not an ounce of fat on me anywhere…and I had cellulite. I now have several ounces of fat on me and have accepted that the cellulite isn’t going to disappear, so plan outfits accordingly. It’s not the end of the world, even though I WISH I could get away with bathing suits and short skirts/dresses/shorts to show off my legs – they are a great shape without the mottled texture!

        Liked by 2 people

  11. You have been blessed with a wonderful husband and from what I’ve read about your online dating fiascos, you hit the jackpot girl. So focus on the good, try and find middle ground on the bad, and you couldn’t find ugly in you if you tried! Here’s wishing you a very Happy New Year!!

    Liked by 3 people

  12. I appreciate your honesty. I sometimes feel the same way about teaching. I have taught at the public school, overseas and at the University (Adjunct) in one form or another teaching English, composition, reading & writing skills since 1994 and sometimes I feel burned out also. My favorite genre to read is crime stories so I know I will appreciate reading your blog and hearing your perspective. I also trained as a paralegal and worked briefly in the field before heading overseas to teach English. At the time, I wanted to go to law school when I lived in New York, but the money and the time required was just not there. Best wishes for a wonderful new year.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Practicing law in New York is tough, extremely tough and I’m a pretty tough cookie myself, but 16 now going into 17 years of it has me burnt out. Maybe I just need a break….Maybe I just need to take a step back, like a year off to whet my appetite with other things and come back to the practice when I’m refreshed. This new year will definitely bring new opportunities so let’s see where it leads.

      Thank you for reading and now following my Blog. Getting new subscribers always let’s me know that I am doing something right.

      All the best for 2019!

      Liked by 2 people

  13. Racquel you always speak your truth and that’s just so refreshing! I totally get how you are feeling about the law, as recently I have been feeling that way too. I have no doubt though that the Lord will continue to guide our steps and lead us to exactly where we need to go and what we need to be doing. In the meantime, keep doing your thing and being your best self. Best wishes to you and your family as you navigate the good, bad and ugly of 2019. Know also that whilst I don’t wish you the bad or the ugly, they are a necessary part of life which makes us appreciate the good so much more.

    Liked by 3 people

  14. Gorgeous couple!

    If your job is causing you that much stress, it sounds like you are evolving. Age doth bring wisdom. Life will tell you when it is time to shift gears. It doesn’t appear to be what you need, anymore.

    Just my three cents…

    Happy New Year!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Life does seem to always have the answers….I’m a great listener and student of life. I’m excited for 2019 and all that the Universe has to offer, one of which may be a beautiful, dynamic shift in careers.

      Your three cents appreciated.

      Liked by 1 person

  15. Laughing out loud at your whirlpool moment. Could have been worse, you guys could have not been “fully clothed”. ๐Ÿ˜‰ It really is the simple things.

    Yes, a transition in career is coming. I’m excited too. What does she call it the “rupture before the rapture” or something like that. ๐Ÿ˜‰

    Happy New Year to you and Tom!

    Liked by 1 person

  16. I’m with you, I think the most memorable comes from the smallest. Years ago my husband insisted our whirlpool tub would fit both of us. I suggested we do a dry run. We climbed in, fully clothed. Tom wedged himself in, while I laughed hysterically watching him attempting to unwedge and climb out. It was not an IG moment, but it was a heart moment that lives on years later! As for the job…as odd as this may sound, I’m excited for you because when we wake up to what isn’t working the wheels of the universe begin to turn. It won’t happen instantly (took two years when I realized my store no longer made me happy) but you know what, you are a helluva savvy woman – you’ll conjure something amazing for sure! xo

    Liked by 2 people

  17. Sorry to hear about the the joy-less job, but at least you have so much joy in other parts of your life. Sooooo happy to hear how the marriage is going. I can totally relate to Greg, LOL!! Itโ€™s wonderful that you are understanding & loving through it all…and so is he. Happy New Year!! ๐Ÿ˜˜

    Liked by 2 people

  18. Iโ€™m sorry your career isnโ€™t as fulfilling as youโ€™d hoped. I can only imagine the stress that comes with your job, but I have no doubt youโ€™re a serious presence in the courtroom!
    Stunning photo as well.
    ๐Ÿ˜Š

    Liked by 2 people

  19. Enjoyed reading all this, as you spoke your truth and it is all very understanding how you feel, especially with law that is a skill to study and achieve and talent to adhere in the courtroom. You have done exceptionally well with โ€˜allโ€™, as you did one step… โ€˜Tryโ€™, blessings onto you and also your marriage ๐Ÿ˜˜โœจ

    Liked by 2 people

  20. Thanks for sharing, not just โ€˜the goodโ€™, but the bad, and the ugly too.
    Your raw honesty is refreshing, as usual.
    Hereโ€™s to living in the present and squeezing every precious drop out of this Sacred Gift: Life ๐Ÿฅ‚

    Liked by 3 people

  21. What a gorgeous photo! Iโ€™m so glad I โ€œmetโ€ you ~ didnโ€™t realize you were a lawyer. I work in law also. Really enjoyed this post and am so glad you shared.

    Two things. One, as a fellow introvert, I can really relate to your husbandโ€™s need to โ€œrechargeโ€ alone. I need a lot of that kind of time myself. Doesnโ€™t mean Iโ€™m mad at anyone. I just need to wind down and read/write and daydream.

    Two, I think cellulite is genetic and we just have to be as healthy as we can without worrying about it. Pretty sure the โ€œcuresโ€ are gimmicks that dehydrate you temporarily. I might be wrong… perhaps thereโ€™s something new.

    Anyway, rock on/write on! ๐ŸŽ‰๐Ÿฅณ๐ŸŽˆ

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi Paula..I’m glad we “met” too. Yes, girl, 17 years and counting. 16 of them in private practice as a solo practitioner. Are you a lawyer? Paralegal? Legal Secretary?

      Yes, yes, yes! I admire you introverts, you’re not afraid of demanding your “me” time. I can certainly respect that.

      I always thought cellulite was genetic too but my Mom doesn’t have any. Her legs are smooth and flawless. ๐Ÿ™‚

      Yes, our health is of foremost importance but, girl, I really do miss my smooth legs.๐Ÿ˜€

      I’m so glad you enjoyed this piece. It took a lot of introspection to write it.

      Liked by 2 people

  22. Very nice and honest. I TOTALLY relate to your feelings about your career and how youโ€™re handling your apathy towards it. I feel the same way. Iโ€™m not pressuring myself to figure it out in 2019 but Iโ€™m open to whatever the universe has in store for me.

    Liked by 2 people

  23. Law is hard, Sis๐Ÿ˜” it’s one of those jobs where if you’re a empathic person, you shine helping people but it takes all out you in the process. I know you said you’re not looking for a solution, but you gotta find one. You don’t want to be doing a job you loathe more and more over time. Focus on your writing, I would love to read something about what you do, realistic or fiction. And who knows, it could be lucrative๐Ÿ’ฐ๐Ÿ’ฐ๐Ÿ’ฐ. Raquel the next Star Jones, or John Grisham๐Ÿค”๐Ÿค”

    You got something good out the velashape incident, your blog is doing fabulous!!

    And I’m glad you and hubby are getting your groove. As long as y’all remain a team, you’ll grow even stronger๐Ÿ’œ๐Ÿ’œ๐Ÿ’œ Love y’all black tie wear, so Manhattan chic!

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Yes, Sis! It’s 16 years of practice and I’m just tired. You’re right about the empathic part, but here’s the thing I have never thought of myself as as an empath but maybe I am.

      The career part will come to me, it will work with itself out, Scherezade, it always does. I just can’t spend too much time worrying about it. Worrying doesn’t solve much of anything.

      From your mouth to God’s ears regarding the writing career. Being a best selling novelist is a goal of mine. It can happen.

      I intend to focus on my writing but I do have my bills to pay.

      I appreciate you always reading my Blog. You have no idea how much your support means to me.

      Thank you! We don’t get too dolled up too often but we do look forward to this annual Christmas Ball.

      Liked by 3 people

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