#5 - When A Grandma Reads Your Book...

Hippo Challenge #5 (read the challenge here)

(this is not the actual grandma/3 year old)

So people are getting my book in the mail from Amazon!  It finally belongs to people!  You Should You Should is in the homes of families, a part of their book collection, and being read aloud to children all over!  I'm getting text messages/facebook messages/emails/phone calls every day about someone who received my book and wanted me to know they love it or their kids love it! (Y'all are the best)

I'm soaking it in.  I'm loving every minute.  I'm feeling happy with my hard work (I worked HARD) and I feel like there is cause to celebrate!  Even if I'm not having a party, I'm allowing myself to feel glad and very grateful!

Today was the best so far though...

#4 - Allow Me To Inconvenience You...

"I just... really... want that!"
* * *

Hippo Challenge #4 (read the challenge here)

So I was meeting up with some friends for "institute" the other night.  Which is basically like a Sunday School during the weekday, or I guess like I large bible study.  I asked them to save me a seat and I'd come later, seein how I had some laundry to finish up.

I knew this would mean I'm the awkward person that opens the door which triggers a large wave of head turns, and I get to be center of attention for a brief awkward moment.  Yay.

#3 - "Fine, Don't Have Some Gum!"

Hippo Challenge #3 (read the challenge here)

Today I was at a movie, sitting next to my friend.  About halfway through the movie, I pulled out a piece of gum to chew.  I considered offering her a piece, but a sudden fear of rejection ensued so I kept the gum to myself.  Later, when I found more courage, (yes... I know... my life is so thrilling that I conquer the great fears such as offering pieces of gum) I leaned over and whispered, "Want some gum?"

"Yes," she whispered, paused a moment, then changed her mind and said, "no, I'm okay."  I figured she was being polite - she did say yes at first.

I calculated how many times she's turned me down for a piece of gum.  Never.  Odds are she wants it.  No big, I'll just hand it over.  I pulled out a piece and set it on her lap, "There you go."

#2 - "I Need You To Fight With Me!"

"I Need You To Fight With Me!"
Hippo Challenge #2 (read the challenge here)

So, here's what I learned about boundaries the other day during a heated argument (the type where you ball like a baby):

#1 - Halloween Decorations Drama

The first story of how I'm learning to be like Hippo (read "You Should You Should" here)


Halloween Decorations Drama
Hippo Challenge #1 (read the challenge here)

I just put up all my Halloween decorations right now, after my roommates went to bed!  Ha.

I've been avoiding putting them up since I brought them from my parents' house.  They've been sitting in a bag, on the floor, in the living room, for days.  Why did I wait til tonight AFTER everyone went to bed, even though I have to get up early tomorrow, to do one of my very favorite annual activities??  Because my mind decided something else was more important - fear of what my roommates think.

They might hate it.

The Hippo Challenge

Every day, until my book ("You Should, You Should" - read it herephysically comes out on the book-store-shelves, I'll be blogging a daily blurb where I learned the same thing Hippo learned.  Cuz it's a lesson I'm still learning, every day.  It's no secret that Hippo represents me.  To those who have been close to me, it's no secret that I have been a bit of a people-pleaser for most my past life.

Real Life Example:

Friend 1:  So what did you think of World War Z?  I am NOT a fan of those types of movies.
Me:  Oh, me neither.  Total waste of time, I wouldn't recommend it to anyone.

(20 minutes later)

Friend 2:  Gin, World War Z was so intense and awesome!  Wow!  What did you think?
Me:  Oh, yeah, I know right?  I was on the edge of my seat!  It was so good!!

Yeah, that happens sometimes, even still.  The above example was just this summer.  BUT, this is great progress.  How?  Because I'm to the point where I feel literally surprised and uncomfortable with myself when this comes out of my mouth.  Like, it doesn't feel as natural anymore.  Which is awesome!!  And way more progress than when I was just learning to simply even recognize this happening.

Recognize what happening?  People pleasing.  In mental health speak, we can refer to it as a symptom of codependency.  In this case, it's saying and doing things that we assume others want us to say and do, in order to keep/maintain our relationships, and ultimately our feelings of self-worth.  This happens when we're absolutely dependent upon what others think about us.  It's a sad and miserable way of life, really.  Always hiding, always pretending, always lying, always believing we're less than, and always afraid.

I mentally face this on a daily basis and work to deal with it healthily.  I'll share my moments and what I gain from them with you every few days till my book comes out, in honor of Hippo and his special debut!!!  Hippo, here's to you.  :)

I already have tomorrow's post written... so come back to read about my Halloween Decorations Drama.

P.S.  To those who subscribed to my blog a long time ago and won a free ebook, it's coming to you soon!  Be excited.  And thanks for subscribing.

P.P.S.  If you have similar stories to share in the following days/weeks/however long this lasts, I invite you to comment.  :)

Where Did Ginny Go?

Um... (Ginny peeks shyly from around corner and waves)... hi...

I'm sorry.  I know it's been a while!  I know, I haven't been very blogful lately.  Truth is, my Creative Juice has been on low for the past year, but I still had to make art, meet deadlines, gain a crowd, finish this book which has been born of sweat, blood, tears, and more than anything, hours and hours and hours of my life.  I don't know what this book was made of, or where I found energy to create anything else besides, because I've been on near empty for a WHILE.

I needed a break.  So I took one.  I neglected my fb page, my blog, my pencils, my sketch books, and I don't think I've even doodled at church in a long, long time.  I played with friends, watched movies, read books, went to Disneyland, camped.  So nice.

But, whether I'm ready or not, it's time to come back!  Hippo and friends are counting on me now!  My hopes and dreams that lived over a year ago when I began writing are counting on me now!  My current self that wants everyone to know about the important lessons I've learned lately, and put into this book, and my future self who will write more books with similar important lessons.... is counting on me now!!!

So.  Now that I'm all moved in to my new place, been working at my new full time job for about a month, my vacationing has come to an end, and I'm starting to feel settled and back to a routine, and now that I don't have homework at night (no homework!!) . . . . . it's time to come back.

I have some ideas for how this blog will work from here on.  They still be brewin' in my head.  More on that laters.  Right nows, I goes to bed.  I's exhausteeed.