A Belated New Year Post…

personal life

I didn’t recap my outfits. I didn’t share the best swag, the best buys, the best beauty of the year. I didn’t do a blog in review (though there’s a draft version I chose not to post) and I didn’t write about my goals for the New Year.

I didn’t because every time I felt false and hollow. I’ve felt false and hollow for a few months now. I’m not sure if it’s because of the election, the winter, stress, or a combination of all of it.

I don’t like the cold, I especially dread the winter after breaking my arm thanks to black ice. There’s some big changes coming down the pike at work and I dread them as well. We all know I monetize this site and the last two months of the year I can bring in as more than I do from January to June if I play it right. I never play it right. This year I had high hopes, wrote out an editorial calendar, had topics chosen for each day that I thought would feel authentic and planned to end the year on a high note.  But by Thanksgiving I lost the desire. I’ve gained back all the weight I lost in 2016 and then some and with it gained back trouble sleeping and the occasional back pain. We hosted Thanksgiving, my mom closed on her new home, we hosted Christmas, we helped my mom move part of her life into her new home, we celebrated New Year’s Eve, and now the snowball starts. Take down the tree, celebrate Emerson’s birthday, celebrate my mom’s birthday, celebrate my sister’s birthday, protest the patriarchy, throw in a Girl Scout sleepover, celebrate my birthday, have a major project at work, celebrate Valentine’s day which includes making valentines for 26 2nd graders, sell Girl Scout cookies, get the taxes done, work Girl Scout cookie booths, then breathe April 1.

I sort of left blogging the same time I took leave from work between Christmas and New Year’s. I felt I needed time to recharge, get back my mojo. It’s January 3rd, I don’t have it yet… but I’m working on it.

New Year’s Eve I ate steak and drank all the alcoholic beverages and nibbled on cute little sugary confections and woke up feeling like total ass. I’m going back to no alcohol except for special occasions (and a blogger event, Friday night after a crappy week, or a Date Night is not special enough). Cutting down on the gluten, cutting out most dairy and red meat. Karl and I did this last year with great success until our road trip and it’s been a slog getting back into it. But I’m going to do it. I remember how good it felt, it’s worth it.

My hair’s getting thin. Karl is the one who noticed it before me, I just thought my volumizer wasn’t working. I’ve taken Viviscal for two months and it seems to be helping. I also know it’s stress, and I need to reduce that to regain some of the hair.

I started seeing a therapist, but my insurance didn’t cover it and when I ran out of HSA funds I stopped. My therapist gave me the names of a few people in-network I plan to check out, I’m also considering Talkspace. There’s no shame in the therapy game; the most powerful, successful, and confident looking people do it. If you’re considering it and hesitant listen to this very short F*it podcast, it inspired me to keep going with it.

I'm moving more and in different ways.  I find when I get in a slump I slump, and often slump in a bed or on a couch.  My sister showed me how the Health app on the iPhone tracks your steps, miles, and floors climbed even if you have never activated the app.  Even if today is one step more than yesterday, it's progress.

I’m getting Lasik this week. Tomorrow, in fact is the day. I’ve been TERRIFIED but I want to swim. I want to camp more easily, I want the freedom. I want to do it before I get klutzy when removing my contacts and put my eye out.  I hate wearing glasses. I’m wearing them right now and I can’t wait until I don’t have to any more. I’ll be sure to share my experience.

I was overdue for the dentist so I went. And I’m going back to get my last two silver fillings switched for tooth-colored resin and to get a mild bleaching (Catherine you inspired me!). I don’t want white white (or as my dentist said, porcelain toilet white), just a shade whiter to keep me from heading into Old Lady Yellowville. I’ll let you know how it goes.

We bought a new computer. How can I run a blogging business from a years-old HP laptop? It’s supposed to arrive some time today. I’ll be spending 2017 trying to figure out a Mac after eons of being a PC gal. Wish me luck.

I joined ChloeDigital. I learned about it, told my friend Beth, she signed up right away and raved so much about it I joined.  Best decision I made for blogging.  If you're a fish out of water with WordPress or just overwhelmed with the techie parts of blogging, it's the best money spent.  If you want to know more, ask in the comments or email me, I'm happy to share my experience.

I did this iPhone hack so if it’s 2am and I wake up and check the time or even my email, I’m not blasting my brain with blue light and screwing up my sleep cycle. It seems to be helping.

I wrote this post, which my friend Jessica told me to write. It made me feel like my blog isn’t all false and hollow. I also started the charity feature on Sundays. I’ve missed a few Sundays because of the lack of mojo, but I’m going to continue this through 2017.

I removed Facebook and Twitter from my phone (don't worry, I'm not getting rid of the blog accounts or letting them lapse). I took a break from Snapchat because it didn’t seem necessary for the blog, but realized I missed it because it’s a truly fun form of social media, free from (at least with who I follow) humblebrags, politics, and posturing.

I cleaned out my lingerie drawer of anything with holes, stretched out, ill-fitting, or past its prime. This is my favorite bra and continues to be even as my size fluctuates, but I also ordered this one and this one because I craved something pretty under my heavy sweaters and coats.

I’m surrounding myself with good stuff. Meditation apps, inspiring books and podcasts, lots of water and unsweetened green tea and oranges and slippers and cashmere and these eye pads which make my bags disappear if only for a couple hours. I’m waking up at 5:30 again so I can have alone quiet time to meditate, to stretch, to go out on the deck with Cindy (my dog) and look at the dark sky and breathe the cold yet fresh air. Oh, and I bought a new pillow.

I remember that one small step each day is better than none at all.

I remember every end of the year/beginning of the next is like this and by March, I get back my mojo.

I also remember that every January I make all sorts of resolutions that I can’t keep or find to be too restrictive. So this year I have none. I resolve to stop with the resolutions. I resolve to take care of myself, right now. And if you’re starting 2017 not feeling inspired or like you have a fresh start, you’re not alone. One small step each day is better than none at all.

I hesitated to write this for fear the comment section would be full of suggestions on what I should do to feel better.  Tips on losing weight, exercising, finding spirituality or religion.  When one offers such suggestions not just to me but to anyone, it doesn't always come across as from a place of kindness.  Also it's often suggested without knowing the whole story.  The best way to help a friend who is going through a rough patch is to provide an ear to listen, arms to hug, and opportunities to feel love, experience a lot of laughter and security.  If they want advice, I promise, they'll ask for it.

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208 Comments

  • Tam January 25, 2017

    I’m so behind in reading blogs so have only just read this entry 26 days after NYE. I’m glad you’re being gentle on yourself, we all need that sometimes. Hope the new year is treating you well!

  • janejetson January 12, 2017

    You sound so burned out. I hope you are feeling better. It is tough to put on weight. I know its hard but try to accept yourself as you are. Have you read the Fat Nutritionist? I suggest anyone with the slightest body image issue read her, she is awesome. http://www.fatnutritionist.com. Kate Harding’s “Fantasy of Being Thin” is worth a read as well.

    I feel for you. I have dealt with bulimia, weight gain and body image problems all my life. Please don’t take this the wrong way. I can relate so much to what you are saying. You are beautiful.

  • Anonymous January 8, 2017

    I have to echo other people’s comments. I am tired of all these blogs/Instagrams with perfect looking people always trying to sell something and who don’t have office jobs so they can always wear ripped jeans or studded high heels. I never really engage with them because what is there to engage about? It is one big boring catalog spread day after day.

    I really appreciate your practical, real life posts, especially fashion posts about work clothes because no one seems to do those anymore yet that is what we all really need. I understand it might not sell to companies and that is a shame, but I think you should keep doing what you are doing because unlike these other bloggers/instagrammers, you are actually helping people and not just getting people to buy stuff they don’t need.

    As for getting burnt out, we all go through that. Whenever I get sick of doing something I had previously loved to do, I tell myself that life is long and it has its seasons. Sometimes we have to take a break and go through the winter period. But not to worry, there is always a spring.

  • Zuma Ayriyan January 8, 2017

    I love how you said that if someone wants an advice, they ask for it. It is so true! Everything seems to have a simple solution, and knowing it makes me even more frustrated!! Work life balance has been such a struggle for me. I feel like if I don’t do it all, I somehow miss out. Then if I don’t do it all perfectly, I feel like a failure. Yoga classes used to help a lot, but I substituted them with much more expensive therapy sessions. Maybe switching back and sticking to it is my answer. xx Zuma
    http://www.splashifteal.com

  • Bridget Wall January 7, 2017

    Life, gracious. Full of such good things, but finding balance is tricky, and never really ends. It’s the gift that keeps on giving. Here’s to a wonderful 2017 for all of us, nonetheless!

  • Jennifer January 7, 2017

    After years of following your blog, I feel connected to you, and I am happy that you’re sharing with us.

  • Emily January 7, 2017

    As a long-time reader … thinking of you through this period!! I find this time of year is always tricky, when it’s cold and dark … and the festive season, while fun, can also be a little relentless and you often come out the other side more drained than when you went in. It sounds like the steps you are putting in place are really positive though (I am joining you on the less booze/more exercise front!) and I hope that they start to show some positive results for you in time. Generally being kind to oneself both physically and emotionally feels like a really positive place to start (I am trying to do the same, plus not berating myself if I fail!) All the best from the other side of the pond 🙂

    • Emily January 7, 2017

      Ps. Having worn glasses since I was 6 and contacts since I was 12…. looking forward to your post on Lasik! It has been something I have been toying with for a few years now but haven’t quite mustered the courage to pull the trigger yet …

    • Allie at Wardrobe Oxygen January 12, 2017

      Thanks and sending you positive supportive vibes!

  • Eleanorjane January 7, 2017

    I am with you! Well done on all your excellent well-being ideas. I’m attempting to put some similar things in place (with probably less willpower than you so far… need to stick with it). It seems that pretty much everyone I know is struggling with anxiety and/or depression at the moment. Almost all of my extended family seems to be on medication. It’s the modern disease. I guess our lifestyles can get pretty toxic.

  • Christine January 6, 2017

    I’m with you. Hope that your lasik went well. I like your resolve to take care of yourself. We’re all rooting for you! For me, part of taking care of myself involves things like reading your blog! Know that you regularly bring joy to your readers. Good upbeat movies are also great for these times. And spring is around the corner!

  • Jessica January 6, 2017

    Allie, your bold authenticity is an inspiration. Thank you for you.

  • Amy January 6, 2017

    You are amazing. While I’m sorry you are going through a rough stretch (2016 blew chunks) – I echo so many of the comments here and so appreciate you being real and showing how you’re feeling. The “everything is perfect” blogs are so tired. Your blog continues to be a beacon of light on the internet. Thank you for that.

    Now for a request – will you do a post on your experience with Lasik? I have been debating it for YEARS but am super creeped out by anything related to eyes (how I’ve worn contacts for 20 years, I have no idea). I would love to hear the straight scoop on the procedure. Everyone who’s ever done it says it’s worth it in the end, but I need to get over the process itself. Anyway, just a thought as you’re thinking about post topics!

    • Allie at Wardrobe Oxygen January 12, 2017

      I am already working on the LASIK review post, and once I have my next follow-up appointment at the end of the month I’ll finish it up and share!

  • Robln Stout January 6, 2017

    Alison – I have to tell you, I have shared the post about what to wear to a protest quite a few times and I’ve seen it around the last few weeks. It’s wonderfully done. I’ve given up most blogs, but still read yours consistently. Happy New Year and thanks for all you do!

  • Susan January 6, 2017

    Long time reader, but first time poster. I just wanted to say how much I appreciate your blog. I found you through your capsule wardrobe posts, but I’ve stuck around for the more personal tales. I love your honesty, your humor, your willingness to be vulnerable. I’ve been in a funk since Nov too 😉 But I’ve decided to bring more positive influences into my day–your site is one I’ve pinned to my web browser home page after I got rid of all the “frequently visited” political sites. I want to be informed about what is going on, but I need to stop marinating in it 😉 And getting a new pillow has been on my “do something for me” list forever, so I’m gonna check that one out. Thanks for going to Washington. I am going to my local march. Keep the faith Sister!

  • Allison January 6, 2017

    Thank you for writing this post and sharing your heart with all of us. Your transparency is one of those lovely and refreshing qualities that make us all love to follow your blog. You are a special soul.
    And I really relate to what you shared. Keep it up, Allison. 🙂
    Here’s to a better start to the New Year,
    Another Allison

  • Leticia January 6, 2017

    Hey, Allison. First I must say I do understand and letting things slide happens to all of us. But, and here is what I think we all need to hear from time to time – doing too much of everything is what got us into this problem in the first place.

    Pick a few problems and a few solutions, say three, four and try those for a couple of months, see how they work. Then drop the ones that don’t work and try a few others. Coming out of a slump and trying everything at once tends to get one burned out and back into a slump again.

    Life is hard and we are not perfect. We should not attempt perfection, as perfection is the breaking point. You are doing fine, you are being honest with yourself and you are striving. To strive and improve is plenty.

    Switching from PC to Mac is a major learning curve (I did just that a few years ago), having surgery on your eyes will take time to get used to, also. If you are also dropping alcohol just to special occasions, I think that is plenty for now. Wait for this things to become routine for a couple of months and then add more – I don’t know, exercise, meditation, whatever appeals to you.

    One little thing that might help on the computer front: if you use a PC at work you might want to configure
    the apple key (command) to to the control key, so ctrl+C copies like the PC
    instead of having brain freeze everyday when you come back from work. It’s on System Preferences > Keyboard > Modifier Keys . I did it and it saved me a lot of grunting. 🙂

    • Allie at Wardrobe Oxygen January 6, 2017

      Oooh thanks for that Mac tip, I do use a PC at work!

      • tgchi13 January 6, 2017

        This helps me as well being a Mac girl from waaaaaaay back starting to use a PC at work – I like not having to reset my brain overtime I sit in font of the other OS 🙂

  • roxyrampage January 6, 2017

    I feel you on this. The election really messed with my head and continues to do so. Your blog is always a bright spot though! I love your blog; part of that is because you get honest and let your readers know your behind the scenes thoughts. Thank you for that, and hopefully the blahs are on their way out!

  • tgchi13 January 6, 2017

    (((Hug)))

  • Debra Kirby January 5, 2017

    A tough couple of months for me too. I volunteered to protect the vote with Lawyers for Hillary on election day when hopes were still high. I’ve been alternating between disbelief/despair and finding ways to fight back and feel good ever since. Winter in Michigan when you have SAD doesn’t help. But headed in the right direction by signing on to the DC march (thanks for what to wear to a protest) and committing to mentor Detroit elementary school students Mondays after work. Hang in there! You have lots of good company.

  • Jessica January 5, 2017

    Allie, I related to this post in so, so many ways. This last year has been so very difficult for so many, myself included. I’ve also noticed the last number of years that I have a lot of difficulty in the winter months as well. I think any time you post from the heart – PARTICULARLY when it’s not perfectly polished and magazine glossy and fabulous – those are the posts with which I most resonate.
    Thanks for being you and being real. Sending you a big hug from the other side of the DC Beltway.

  • JC January 5, 2017

    Happy new year to you. My hair started thinning at around age 30. I was told by a dermatologist that it was just a hereditary thing. Maybe it is, but it can also be related to hormonal conditions (I hit menopause at age 43) as well as oral contraceptive use (I was taking the pill to manage endometriosis). It’s worth it to discuss with your gynecologist even if neither situation applies to you. My widening part was starting to make me self-conscious, and I found some excellent tips on a blog called Corner of Hope and Mane. While my hair loss isn’t as severe as the blogger’s, she has some great product suggestions and tutorials. Big Sexy Hair Root Pump Plus mousse and Toppik fibers are like miracles. I touch up small spots near the hairline with Joan Rivers Great Hair Day. It can take some practice to get the technique just right, but these things make me look like I have a full head of hair. If Viviscal gives good results, I hope you’ll share some more about it. Thanks!

    • JC January 5, 2017

      I didn’t read the fine print until just now. I apologize if the suggestions cross the line.

  • Emily January 5, 2017

    I have read your blog for years – I think it was the first blog I ever read, actually.
    I love your vibe, and appreciate your voice so much.
    We’re in an intense time, collectively. The scariest thing for me is when people won’t acknowledge that business as usual is not cutting it, so deep gratitude
    for your honesty.

  • Kathryn Lohr January 5, 2017

    Congratulations on the Lasik! I did it 17 years ago and it is still my favorite personal luxury expense of all time. As to the rest, inward kindness and outward perseverance are the only sustainable paths.
    Thank you for your work here, I have enjoyed your site for many years.
    Kathryn

  • Sheri Miller January 5, 2017

    You don’t fart rainbows?! Neither do I!

    Sending you wishes for peace, comfort, and good health, and honoring your courage to speak your truth.

  • Brenda W. January 5, 2017

    Thanks for your honesty. January and February are tough for me too. Hang in there! Also, enjoy your new sight! I got PRK (Lasik for high-maintenance eyeballs) in June and it’s one of the best decisions I’ve ever made.

  • Susie Gorden January 5, 2017

    No advice just empathy. Hang in there.

  • Anamarie January 5, 2017

    This was an inspiring post, Allie! I love the steps you’re taking to care for yourself in 2017. I hope you find your mojo soon!

  • Grace Mitchell January 5, 2017

    Bless you for this post. I am feeling much the same way. It’s a hard time.

  • Nancy BR January 5, 2017

    I read your post with sympathy. I’ve been there. But you will rebound. Let’s face it- part of the struggle is winter. We should be hibernating. Having said that, I noted your mention of hair loss with interest. I am in my 60’s now, but in my early fifties, my already fine hair began to thin drastically. I doubled down on highlights and low lights and meditation and healthy eating. Nothing slowed the progress. I finally understood that for me it was hereditary. So I began exploring wigs. I had bad memories of women wearing what could only be called hair-hats when I was a kid. Fake and stiff doll hair in a one size fits all short poufy style. AWFUL! But that is no longer the case. I found Vogue Wigs online and my troubles were over. Many women in my situation have turned there and the wig selection is fabulous both in style and color. I started wearing one every day. I was worried that someone would guess my secret. That has never happened. The only awkward moments come when women stop my at the store or gym and ask who does my hair. I look younger and feel attractive. My husband, kids and friends think my hair looks great. My son’s girlfriend was shocked to learn – after two years of being in our family- that I wear a wig. I encourage any woman who suffers from thinning hair to check them out and Allie, you should do a column on them. Finally I add that the cost of a wig for me is less than a trip to the hair salon- about $135. I own several in several colors. They last about 6 months with daily wear, longer if you rotate and are easy to maintain. My favorites are the Noriko brand wigs, but there are so many brands to choose among. They are especially nice to travel with, too. No more bad hair days.

    • Allie at Wardrobe Oxygen January 6, 2017

      My cousin has gone the same route and her wigs are so fun and so natural looking! A brilliant alternative!

      • Nancy BR January 6, 2017

        I want to add that I love your writing, Allie. You are so present in every word. I hope you are starting to feel better. We all need our very best selves to resist the coming administration of the man-child.

  • Lynn January 5, 2017

    Oh Allie. Thank you for this post. I can so relate. I feel a bit of my mojo returning, but I think it’s going to be a slow process for me. Last year just sucked wind for me. I’m in that stage of life when my aging parents and my kids need me, and this past year was a doozy. I left my corporate job a while back, so have the flexibility in terms of time to help out, but it was too much this last year and I felt mired in the problems and crises of other family members, close and extended. Add to that the expensive, and lots of elbow grease year my husband and I had with several major home repairs such as roof, deck, furnace, paint and I felt like I crawled and clawed my way across the finish line of the year, minus any real sense of holiday joy. Ugh. I’m tired. So…like you, I’m trying to savor small things. I was back at my gym yesterday after a holiday absence and was reminded of how much I need that movement and connection with my gym friends to lift my spirits. I also cleaned my house top to bottom, removing any remanant of the holidays and that fresh start and clean slate bouyed me. Yay! Small things, but all good. Happy Newy Year, Allie!

    • Allie at Wardrobe Oxygen January 6, 2017

      Whew, Lynn you are a complete ROCKSTAR! You may feel like your mojo is gone, but to get through all of that is amazing and awesome. Losing mojo is often because Life is telling us we need to refocus on ourselves and it sounds like you’re doing just that. Sending you strength and love, You sound like a completely badass woman and those around you are lucky to have you in their lives!

  • Roberta Johnson January 5, 2017

    A lot of my friends (and the country) are feeling blue and wrecked by the election – whoever’s side you were on, it mostly came from a place of hate and fear. So baby, take care of yourself. And take whatever break you need from blogging. We love you and will miss you, but we also understand that things change, times change. YOU DO YOU.

  • Karen January 5, 2017

    I found your blog just a few weeks ago, and spent hour(s) going through it, impressed with your writing, your practical and helpful fashion advice and your authentic voice. Just now I had to search to find you……and now after reading this, I like you even more. January. Election. Post-holiday blahs and blues. Yes.

  • julieadp January 5, 2017

    I rarely comment here, but I enjoy reading and I often appreciate your honesty and “realness.”
    I have wanted LASIK done for years but am not a good candidate for the procedure. Wishing you the best.

  • Gillian January 4, 2017

    Oh no, not you too!!? I was already sad to see AlreadyPretty getting burned out and bowing out… take care of yourself, because I love reading your blog! I appreciate your honesty in this post, and I’ve enjoyed your protest post and charity posts and the kind of passion and clear=thinking that lies behind them. Be nice to youself, and hope inspiration hits soon!

    • Allie at Wardrobe Oxygen January 6, 2017

      I’m not going anywhere, and I have plenty of ideas in this brain ready to make into posts! 🙂

  • Jen January 4, 2017

    Thank you for this. I always appreciate your voice and your honesty! I plan to try some of your strategies. Good luck getting through the next 3 months.

  • Carrie January 4, 2017

    Love your blog, love your honesty. Peace and hugs to you.

  • Sue January 4, 2017

    You may think you are false and hollow…..but to me, you are one of the most real bloggers I read. Thanks for the transparency and truth. You really do rock for some of us. Thank you!

  • Kris January 4, 2017

    I cannot tell you how welcome this post is, because I’m going through this right now myself and it feels very isolating. I’ve been depressed before and thought I would recognize it, but this has snuck up on me. I cry often and easily (good thing I’m working from home this week!) and I’m not being very affectionate to my husband, even though I want to be. I think for me it’s the build-up of a number of things, both personal and job disappointment, but the election and post-election stress just pushed me over the edge. I’m trying to get into see a therapist using my EAP (it takes a really long time when you try to set something up over the holidays) and I left a message for my doctor yesterday begging for a prescription for anti-depressants (even though I haven’t been in to see her for 5 years). I know all of the things you’re “supposed” to do, but it’s easier said than done when you’re in the throes of it. Meantime, this is what I’m trying to do – get outside for a little bit every day, get some exercise even if just a short walk every day, eat as healthfully as I can but be kind to myself if I don’t, stay away from news, minimize the time I spend on social media. I made only one New Year’s resolution for myself – swear less. I think that’s going to be pretty difficult in 2017! Thank you so much for sharing.

    • Allie at Wardrobe Oxygen January 6, 2017

      I am so glad you’re taking care of yourself. It’s tough, but you’re moving forward and every step forward no matter how slow or small is progress and that is great! Sending you strength and love Kris!

  • Adele Goetz January 4, 2017

    I know that being “perfect” is a good business model, but your honesty is refreshing and inspiring. I’ve also felt blah since the election… and then felt guilty for it, because there is so much fighting to be done for those who have much more to complain about than I do. It’s so fun being a woman sometimes, isn’t it?

  • SunDapple January 4, 2017

    Heartfelt hugs from yet another reader who’s feeling blah. I have been in an orthopedic boot and now cast since late September and still have 16 more days to go. I’ve been dependent on others throughout the entire Holiday season. I am commenting only to Thank You for posting about Castcoverz. I bookmarked the link thinking that should my kids ever need their products I would be able to help them. Turns out I am the one in a leg cast and the Castcoverz Legz has been keeping my toes warm over the Holidays. So thanks Allie. Your posts help in ways you probably never hear of, but trust me you are appreciated.

  • Lee4 January 4, 2017

    Allie, count me in as another reader who loves this post!! Thank you for being so honest with us. I’ve had the winter doldrums a bit myself and am still struggling to come to grips with the election. There are times when I’m mad as hell & working on the various ways I will resist and continue to fight for my country, and then there are times when I still cry. I’ve got to work on healthy eating and exercise so that I can feel better overall. This is always a struggle for me. Reading your post today, along with these comments, let’s me know I’m not alone. Virtual hugs to you!

  • Sonia January 4, 2017

    Thanks, Allie, for letting me feel I am not alone in my blah feelings. I too have gained weight back after months of going daily to the gym. There are major changes coming down the pike at my job and I’m worried. I am trying to do better with my stepdaughters, but when I do, the oldest (27) does something that sets me back. Worst of all, I need shoulder surgery sooner than later and I’ve put it off far too long because of my job. However, I’ve secretly scheduled it for 3 weeks from now. Six weeks recovery. Just know, you’re not alone and there are many fans that are just like you, including me, that are only human.

    • Allie at Wardrobe Oxygen January 6, 2017

      Thanks Sonia, I’m glad you scheduled the surgery. Take care of yourself. Six weeks seems like an eternity but it’s solving an issue that could affect you for life. Sending you strength and love!

  • Hannah Barth Bonaparte January 4, 2017

    I’m a social worker and a regular reader. I wanted to say THANK YOU for making a blog that makes me feel GOOD about myself and who I’m consciously becoming. You may feel like your blog is sometimes false and hollow, but I feel like it’s really important and well-executed work. Things that are “important” come in all shapes and sizes and are delivered by people with all different talents. I’ve come to realize this during my time as a social worker. Sometimes just complimenting my clients’ outfit can make their day. Sometimes a post about sweaters can make mine. I couldn’t do what you do and it’s something I need in my life. So: Thanks.

  • Pauline January 4, 2017

    Thanks for being so genuine! This is a really rough time of year for me too. I did want to thank you for posting an essay “Enjoli” on FB last year – it resonated with me so much. I ended up giving up alcohol in an attempt to get more/better quality sleep and feel better generally. I’ve been sober now for over 4 months and while my sleep is not perfect yet (especially with my annual “you’re taking some time off – therefore you must come down with a horrible cold!” situation this week) I am seeing some huge improvements within myself, attitude tow work, my relationships and confidence in general. THANK YOU so much for triggering a huge life change!!! I hope you have a wonderful 2017 and best of luck with the Lasik.

  • PK January 4, 2017

    Always worth reading something written authentically from the heart

  • Salllie January 4, 2017

    I have been reading your blog for a few years and you rock! You consistently have great content and you are real. Thank you for sharing as you did today – it sounds like you are taking some great self-care steps. Hugs to you! Off to go look at that pillow you recommended:)

  • kristen January 4, 2017

    Just perhaps helpful, are you taking B and D vitamins? Sounds like a light box would help for the season as well. Props on going to therapy–it can make an amazing difference!

    • Allie at Wardrobe Oxygen January 4, 2017

      I do take B vitamins, but not D. And I have a light box from back when my office was a windowless brown cave, haven’t taken out since I am now in a super sunny white office with a whole glass wall. Maybe I will

      • kristen January 4, 2017

        I tested low in both and it was a surprise. Can also affect mood. Hope you feel better soon, I’ve missed your posts!

        • Anonymous January 8, 2017

          I second the vitamin D3. I used to suffer from SAD during January and February and after doing a lot of research I started taking 2,000 IU daily of Vitamin D3 and it has really helped! No more SAD! I now take the Vitamin D3 all year round. Vitamin D3 plays a huge role in our health and most people are deficient. It gets harder and harder to make as you get older.

          Also try going outside every single day for a walk (barring a rain or snow storm). I try to go for a 45 minute walk every day at lunch and I think the fresh air and light really help, not to mention it is a break from hunching over a computer all day.

  • LynninRI January 4, 2017

    I hear you…and in response: love and hugs and love and hugs and love…..

  • Mary O'Driscoll January 4, 2017

    Thank you! Just thank you. That is all.

  • Lindsay January 4, 2017

    Thank you so much for always being true to yourself and sharing these bits with your readers. I’m sure that opening up can be scary, but we appreciate your honesty and bravery. Sending you some hugs, and also looking forward to hearing how that pillow works out for you!

  • Keri January 4, 2017

    Allie, I just really adore you. You are always honest whether it’s about a sponsored post or what’s going on in your heart, mind or life. This post is such a wonderful mixture of comfort, support and motivation. Thank you for a perfect way to start this year.

  • Sacha Brady January 4, 2017

    Thank you for sharing. So honest and vulnerable! I’m sorry you’re feeling blah. I promise you that you don’t read as hollow and fake to me, FWIW. And that protest march apparel post was excellent! I shared it with someone who said she’d be going to DC in a few weeks. Take care, lady.

  • Nadine January 4, 2017

    I have an “I am great!” folder – a physical folder (not digital) with “I am great” written on the tab. Someone suggested this to me a long time ago and for years, I have put award letters, notes from students, and whatever else comes my way that validates the words written on that folder tab. When I need to feel better about myself, I get it out and skim through it. The letter from a renowned professor I met at a meeting 30 years ago who wrote to say he follows my career always gives me a lift! I suggest this to all of the young women I mentor because a person needs to remember the good things they do (and have done) when feeling the way you describe in your post. We all feel that way at times no matter what our social media depicts.

    • Allie at Wardrobe Oxygen January 4, 2017

      What an amazing idea! Thank you so much for sharing this Nadine I think I’m going to make one!

      • Hannah Barth Bonaparte January 7, 2017

        There’s also an app called RememberWin that lets you digitally log your accomplishments and then “surprises” you with pop ups on your phone later, reminding you of the great things you’ve done. I like it because it encourages you to articulate your successes as well as remember them later.

  • katharina4853 January 4, 2017

    Ok, this post just made me want to hang out with you everyday. You are there and you get it . . . real life. I think so many of us can relate to your words, it’s nice to read something and not feel like your world is so very different from the mainstay of blogging where everything is the latest, best, most fashionable and organized. I’m sharing this with more real people. Keep up the honesty. I took a writing class and the thing I remember most from the entire class was . . . make sure your words come from the heart. And you have done just that.

  • Stacie Scattergood January 4, 2017

    Allie, this is a LOT of good stuff.
    Good on you for following through with the therapist. Mental health is so underfunded and underrated in this country. It’s hard to be your own advocate in this area.
    Good on your with adding steps–you’re right, even just one extra a day makes a huge difference.

    LASIK is AMAZING! I had glasses starting in first grade, and did it in my late 30s. Swimming in fantastic–next try snorkeling in wonderful, warm water surrounded by delightful fish. It’s a life changer.

    I think perhaps you have different mojo back, not what you were expecting. Thank you for embracing all you shared. It is appreciated.

  • Ladida January 4, 2017

    I’ve read your blog on and off for many years now, but I’ve never commented. I just want to say that I know how you feel – January can be brutal and it is this year for me as well. Thanks for your honesty. I’ll try to do what you’re trying to do: take a very deep breath and take care of myself – and hopefully gain the energy to take care of others as well. Small steps are fine!

  • Hilary January 4, 2017

    Thanks for being so open with us as usual! I’m also one who doesn’t make resolutions, because I know I won’t keep them and will just feel crappier when I let myself down. Baby steps all through the year trying to make new habits! And keeping up with the therapy (and to be honest, better living through chemistry…anti-depressants are the only thing that gets me out of bed during this dreary, bitterly cold time of year)!

    • Allie at Wardrobe Oxygen January 4, 2017

      Ain’t no shame in the antidepressants game; my dad took them, they’re literally lifechanging. It’s important we take care of ourselves!

  • the cape on the corner January 4, 2017

    thanks for such a real post. i’d love to know how the pillow ends up working out for you. sometimes i think go, buy that pillow (or you know, another fancy type pillow) and then i’m like, no this ones fine. sometimes you sleep well. i haven’t blogged in ages, i was hoping to make it a goal this year, but i don’t think i really enjoy it anymore. but i enjoy reading them, so i keep reading. and i enjoy commenting, so i keep commenting.
    b

    • Allie at Wardrobe Oxygen January 4, 2017

      I bought the MyPillow after two friends raved about it. HATE IT. Karl likes it, but I think it’s lumpy and not supportive. The only pillow I have ever loved was a medium Hotel brand one from TJ Maxx but every time I’ve been back they don’t have it. I have high hopes for Casper, but I also am glad they have a return policy! My MyPillow is now my dog’s pillow!

  • Deidre Woods January 4, 2017

    This is the first comment I’ve written on any of the blogs that I follow daily. I wanted to say thank you for sharing your struggles. It makes me feel that I am not alone.

  • snaphappy January 4, 2017

    {{hugs}}

  • Nancydrew January 4, 2017

    Thank you for your continued honesty! Please never underestimate your impact on your readers. I have been down for a while now – as a military wife we move frequently and after the last move (this past summer – which DH still hasn’t joined us on) I have just been sick and tired of always trying to make new friends. So I have no social life, and I am not bothering to even try… for now, anyway. You’re my “friend” and I am very grateful to you.

    • Allie at Wardrobe Oxygen January 4, 2017

      Oh thank you, you’re my “friend” too after all these years! Sending you strength and hugs!

  • Patience Grasshopper January 4, 2017

    I subscribed to your blog a few months ago, because I (a 62 year old new retiree) wanted to “breathe life into my wardrobe”. I had decided to unsubscribe your blog, but only because I felt your fashion sense, while terrific, didn’t jive with my own. I also thought the age difference was an obstacle. However, your essay today really hit a nerve with me. I too, have gained back all the weight–and then some–that I had lost. I so often feel lost at the beginning of a new year. I usually blame it on the hustle-and-bustle-of-the-holidays-let-down. I also need to move more, etc. etc. Anyway, what I’m clumsily saying is I am not unsubscribing.You and I, a young mother and a retiree, have much in common. Oh, and I’m going to order that pillow! Peace to you.

    • Allie at Wardrobe Oxygen January 4, 2017

      Wow, thank you Patience! I know my personal style isn’t for everyone. In fact I had the advice and outfits as separate blogs until 2010 fearing what I wore would cloud the rest of the content (combined because it was too much work to maintain both). But I think you hit on something – we all may be different ages, different lifestyles, different bodies, different budgets but at the core most of us women have things in common! <3 Hope you like the pillow!

  • Jennifer January 4, 2017

    thank you for sharing. Honestly, you amaze me. How you manage to work, raise a child, blog and look fabulous doing it all is inspiring. Best to you in 2017.

    • Allie at Wardrobe Oxygen January 4, 2017

      I don’t always manage. Spurts of greatness followed by long stints of anxiety, insomnia, and carbs. But thank you and my best to you too!

  • shessomelicious January 4, 2017

    Thank you. I’m right there with you. Right down to the hair (the only part of my bod that’s never let me down) thinning. Different set of stresses, but same set of feelings. I hesitate to get into it with friends because I feel like the seasonal Debbie Downer (and hey, I’m not living in Aleppo, or about to live under a Trump presidency, so my problems feel pretty insignificant, globally speaking), but reading about someone I admire feeling the same way helps. My dad (bless him for not being the guy who has to ‘fix’ my problems) nailed it the other day. He gave me a hug and said, quite simply, “Sometimes it’s tough being human, isn’t it sweetie?” Yes, yes it is.

    • Allie at Wardrobe Oxygen January 4, 2017

      I too feel guilty, like come on, it’s not like I’m in Aleppo, buck up girlfriend, things aren’t that bad. But we can’t control what we feel, we can only control what we do with those feelings. Your dad sounds awesome!

  • bsmeany January 4, 2017

    2016…will be known as that year. Big hugs <3

  • kuri January 4, 2017

    Thanks for your thoughtful post – these are my favorite. This one got me thinking about the events of last year and beyond and what I can learn from them.
    I have a terrible habit of giving unsolicited advice – I’ll find other, less annoying ways to get the information out there.
    Step by step!

  • Heather January 4, 2017

    Thank you so much for writing this. I’m starting off 2017 not feeling like my best self, and I’m 13 weeks pregnant. I’m having a hard time accepting that the first half of the year isn’t the time to kick start all the fitness/weight loss goals, but I’m doing my best to remind myself that every little bit helps. Now isn’t the time to make drastic changes, but moving more and improving my eating habits are more important now than every. Baby steps, right? I appreciate your words so much. Wishing you peace in 2017.

  • Lorena Lorena January 4, 2017

    Seems like last year was not that good for many of us… I certainly hope that mojo make a kick ass come back Allie.

  • Karen Bowers January 4, 2017

    Peace to you. Thank you for your ongoing transparency.

  • Kate K January 4, 2017

    Thanks for this. I really appreciate your honesty. The line in “Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas” about having to muddle through somehow has been my mantra in the past few months. I don’t feel like I’m coping well or at my best, but I’m muddling through. And right now, that’s work and it’s enough.

    Also, aren’t good pillows just the best? I’m anxious and a bad sleeper but bedtime is just so much nicer (and my life is so improved) with my memory foam pillow.

    I hope 2017 treats you well, Allie. Thanks for creating this really wonderful space.

  • Amy Sackett Warren January 4, 2017

    You’re the ONLY blog I have kept following all these years because you look like a real person and you keep it real. You’re not afraid to tell us every once in a while, look, this is what’s going on, it sucks, but this is how I’m dealing with it.
    The fam and I are taking our own “cross country” (if starting in Iowa and heading to Vegas counts as “cross country”) trip in 3 months and I keep thinking, “I need to go back and read Allie’s posts from your vacation for tips on packing, etc. I decided this year to ditch the New Year, New Me BS and just try to do small achievable things. I never stick with larger goals anyway, so why set myself up? Happy New Year, Allie!!

  • Grace McNamee Decker January 4, 2017

    Our lives are really different– but our hearts are in the same place in a lot of ways, I think. Hang in there, Allie, and I’ll try to do the same. <3

  • Allison January 4, 2017

    Thinking good thoughts for you in the new year – and thank you so much for mentioning Talkspace, I’ve been looking for an affordable way to get some much needed therapy and this might just be it.

  • Jackie January 4, 2017

    Add me to the list of those inspired by this post and struggling with similar “funk”–glad you are feeling supported in making some tangible changes, hoping each step forward makes for a better journey.

  • Alison French-Tubo January 4, 2017

    I appreciate this so much. I too have to give myself the January pep talk each year–not so I can spring into great shape, but just to keep slogging… Hope Lasik goes super smoothly today.

  • Susan Young January 4, 2017

    I love your work, so here’s hoping that you find your mojo again. Sounds like you’re taking care the best that you can in the meantime.

    • Allie at Wardrobe Oxygen January 4, 2017

      Thank you Susan, and the blog will continue. May be slow with the outfit posts, but the ideas are churning away in my head for other content!

  • susan January 4, 2017

    I thought you must have been reading my mind with every word you wrote, it was a though we were the same person. I am so proud of you for making some positive changes. The evil controller “money” stands in my way for things I really need to do: therapy, new pillow, just a night away from it all. But don’t anyone dare tell you how to feel better – it is too personal. Nothing better than one tiny step forward.

    • Allie at Wardrobe Oxygen January 4, 2017

      When I felt I couldn’t afford therapy, meditation apps helped greatly. Also meditation videos on YouTube, I’d get up at 5am when even the dog was still asleep and do them. Hang in there, sending you strength and hugs!

  • Sarah K January 4, 2017

    Yay! Great post! Welcome back, Allison! I’ve missed this authentic voice, the one that keeps me reading here. Remember that Barbies are for girls, not women. With you in the struggle, sister. Hang tough like you always do. We’ll be here. Happy 2017!

  • elena January 4, 2017

    Sending you love, and light, and hugs. I’m so glad that you continue to blog!!!!

  • Julie January 4, 2017

    My favorite posts are the raw, real, honest ones. This one resonates with me so much. Thank you for sharing. Hugs to us all as we slog through January.

  • Connie C January 4, 2017

    Thanks for baring your soul – your honesty is very refreshing! I wish you good things in 2017, and know that others are here struggling along with you in this crazy world.

  • Allie at Wardrobe Oxygen January 4, 2017

    Oh and for those who didn’t get holiday cards this year… no one did. I decided to pass on the stress this year and we’ll resume next year.

    • LoriM January 4, 2017

      You may never go back! I didn’t! Decided (in my 20’s?) all my friends move too much (many of us grew up overseas and can’t seem to get the travel bug out of our systems) and I was too stressed out trying to keep up with the cutest, most meaningful cards and making sure I sent one to everyone who sent me one. 🙂

      Here’s a hug from me, too. I’m struggling, in different areas, at a different stage of life, so I get it. I think winter is part of the problem, at least for me. Dark, cold. Ugh.

      I do so appreciate your blog. I hope you feel better soon, and keep sharing EVERYthing with us!

  • Fawn Mulcahy January 4, 2017

    I’m not sure that I have thanked you for your blogging good info and honesty. I really enjoy your confent but do acknowledge that this is a lot of work and added stress on you. Sending you lots of Canadian love from up north and hoping that spring comes early.

  • Susan B. January 4, 2017

    Allie, it sounds as though you’re doing some awesome self-care. I always appreciate your honesty.

    I’ve been thinking about trying the Viviscal, but didn’t want to plunk down the $$ in case it turned out to be mostly hype. But my dermatologist recommends it and if you say you’re getting results, I may give it a try.

    • Allie at Wardrobe Oxygen January 4, 2017

      I bought one box of the extra strength, figured it was worth the try. It took a full two months to see any results, and it wasn’t like I suddenly had 22-year old hair, but I had the hair from a couple years ago 🙂 One thing to note is it can make your scalp super greasy. Also the Women’s version has iron in it; the men’s version doesn’t have the extra iron so if you have problems with iron the men’s version may be better. Googling about the greasy hair I found this piece from The Cut and ordered some folic acid and biotin to switch it up and only do one Viviscal a day. Once I find the right combo and see true results I’ll do a full review http://nymag.com/thecut/2013/10/how-to-make-a-hair-growth-cocktail.html

      • shessomelicious January 4, 2017

        I’d LOVE a full review when you have true results/feel up to it. Viviscal is out of my price range (plus the shark fin thing), so I’m pounding the Biotin and an array of vitamins that would make RDJ proud. My hair, which has always been gloriously thick, is coming out in clumps in the shower, and it’s horrifying. It’s been happening on and off since last spring, and the doc just basically shrugged it off. He’s balding, so no empathy there I guess. If you see measurable results please do post!

  • bubu2 January 4, 2017

    Hang in there. This time of year can be so hard with the dark and cold – plus I think the election and 2016 just took a toll on everyone. It took our a family a full week to recover from the holidays — but I gave myself full permission to veg on the couch, or at least in the house, in pajamas for hours on end. I highly recommend it– that and getting out into the sun for a walk at least once a day. The stress of working + parenting + family + rest of life can be overwhelming and demoralizing. At my annual checkup this year, my doctor, after I told her how frustrated I was with some weight gain in recent years, (after going over everything else going on in my life) looked me in the eye and said “Be kind to yourself.” And that has stuck with me — whenever I start getting impatient or hard on myself, I remember her words. So I hope you can do that for yourself now — we all need a little more kindness, most especially from ourselves.

  • Vivian Gray Foster January 4, 2017

    Thanks for sharing! I really appreciate it when bloggers are just honest about their life. I can relate … I feel myself slipping back into some things I “shed” in 2016 and it’s disheartening. But 2017 is still new and there’s always time to start taking those small steps. Thank you for sharing your journey.

    • Allie at Wardrobe Oxygen January 4, 2017

      Exactly. There’s no one day you have to start or it’s too late. Each morning is a new opportunity!

  • Morgan Rudder January 4, 2017

    Therapy is the shit. I started at the end of the year when a bunch of (comparatively small) stuff happened in my life that left me reeling and looking for change. I am learning so much more about myself and what I need to be a good human. I hope you can work it out because there’s no shame in that game!

  • Linda B January 4, 2017

    I loved this post–your honesty, sense of humor, and strong values shine out. I actually hate New Year’s resolutions in general, although a few times I’ve made ones that I was glad of. Ten years ago, for instance; I was going to turn 50 that year, and didn’t like the extra weight that had crept on bit by bit for decades, so I went to Weight Watchers on January 2 and it was wonderful to not carry around that extra baggage after that. This year, I promised myself to try to build on the lessons I learned from a bad bike crash back in September: how to take time for myself, and how to focus on what really is important and let go of the rest, and how much support I have all around me if I need it! Not exactly a set of “resolutions”; more like important intentions.

    Allie, thanks for what you do here on this blog. Good luck with your Lasik. And I hope you find the way to roll through the snowball of this coming few months with ease and humor. Taking care of yourself, as you are doing, is going to be the key. Thanks for being a great example to so many people!

  • brea ellis January 4, 2017

    Thanks for your constant authenticity… as a part of the DC blogging community it inspires me in a way that this community usually does not.

  • joiezabel January 4, 2017

    You’re so awesome.

  • Jodie Filogomo January 4, 2017

    Good for you for taking time off!! I think sometimes that can be the best mental health vacation every!!
    jodie
    http://www.jtouchofstyle.com

  • patricia January 4, 2017

    Thanks Allie. We’re listening … actually reading but you know what I mean.

  • Carrie January 4, 2017

    Hugs, Allie!

  • Audrey January 4, 2017

    It is refreshing to read someone being so frank. It’s also nice to know I’m not the only one in a funk. I hope your new year gets better quickly, and I’ll still be here reading no matter how often you post. *hugs*

  • Ramona January 4, 2017

    Thank you for your honesty. I have “unfollowed” several bloggers I used to enjoy because they have started to feel barbie doll perfect, with their constant string of new, beautiful and pricey outfits and professional hair and makeup. Just another glossy magazine look I can’t achieve. I appreciate real, I understand it, and I always take something from a direct conversation that I can apply to my own life. I have had post election sadness and that feeling of unnamed dread as well. But, we are a young country full of strong people and we will make it, probably not unscathed, but alive. Take care of you. Revel in your family. Hope will return.

    • Allie at Wardrobe Oxygen January 4, 2017

      It’s hard because barbie perfect sells. Barbie gets mentioned on big sites, gets the big partnerships with the big brands, the big following on Instagram. And when you get real, you make yourself vulnerable. I used to get annoyed by the “perfect” bloggers but I realize it’s a role they are playing for their blogging business. And you are correct, we are a young country full of strong people and will will make it! <3

  • Jennifer January 4, 2017

    I had lasik done in the summer of 2004, and it has been AMAZING! There is almost no way to describe the freedom of jumping into the water and not worrying about contacts or waking up in the morning and being able to see. I’m hoping that your experience is even better.

  • swcope January 4, 2017

    I’m with you as well. I made some progress in my career this year after nearly a decade of being stuck. But that meant I let everything else slide. I am heavier than I have ever been. I slacked off on diet and exercise. And my contract is up in March, so I am anxious about changes in my work situation on top of everything else. Taking a six month contract was the right choice, but I am still anxious. I am just trying to take care of myself and make baby steps towards my goals. At the moment it all I can do. Everything else is out of my hands.

    • Allie at Wardrobe Oxygen January 4, 2017

      Realizing it’s out of your hands is a step in itself and a way to move forward in other ways. Sending you luck and strength in the new year!

  • DWJ January 4, 2017

    I’m with you. I feel like I’m just kind of slugging along but like you said as long as I get a few more steps than I did the previous day I’m headed in the right direction. You’ll find you way and so will I.

  • Katie January 4, 2017

    I feel you. I’m in essentially the same place mentally and emotionally. 2016 was just a horrible drain on me, with only a couple of bright spots inside of kind of a dreary, grey slog of a year.

    One more step than yesterday, right? That definitely seems like a good place to start.

  • Ginger January 4, 2017

    I have no advice, I just want to thank you for your honesty. I have had the blahs a while also, there’s great comfort just in knowing I’m not alone. “One small step is better than none” shall be my motto! My heart, positive vibes and unending support are flowing your way! ❤

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