The Power of Friendship: What a Difference a Year Makes Bookmark and Share

The Power of Friendship: What a Difference a Year Makes

A year ago today, I woke up for the first time in my Milwaukee home. I was excited about our new chapter in life but also exhausted from the three-day drive across country and overwhelmed by the unpacking.

Mostly, I was terrified at having left behind a circle of friends that had taken more than a decade to create. My emotional stability was in question—so I guess things were actually pretty much the same as always but I worried about life without having dear friends close by.

I was right to be concerned. Only in the past decade has ...

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Make New Friends But Keep the Old Bookmark and Share

Make New Friends But Keep the Old

Having spent the past four days visiting my best friend from high school, I woke up this morning in a curious funk. I should have felt refreshed and happy, on a post-vacation high. Instead, I was melancholy and moody.

It shouldn’t have come as a surprise. Hanging out with someone who giggled with you when you were a pimply faced teen with braces and a poodle perm surely lights up something inside you akin to a heroin rush (I assume given that I have never partaken in heroin). Of course, the rush is followed by a crash and major ...

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What I Learned My First Week Off Anti-Anxiety Meds Bookmark and Share

What I Learned My First Week Off Anti-Anxiety Meds

Just over a week ago I swallowed what I hope was the last pill for anxiety control that I will ever take. After six months of medically induced mellowness, I felt ready to boost my serotonin levels on my own. Plus, I really missed my libido.

The medication had taken the edge off my anxious personality, but it also made me slightly numb (in more ways than one) and unmotivated. I’d lost my internal fire and I wanted some of it back.

Many people have anxiety levels that may require lifelong medication, but for others, making lifestyle changes to ...

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Never Say Never Bookmark and Share

Never Say Never

Back in college, we used to play a little game called “I Never.” Perhaps you’ve heard of it? One person says something they’ve never done and those who have done said thing must drink.

It’s an excellent way to learn people’s deepest darkest secrets, thereby creating lifelong friendships based on fear that the horrible things you’ve done could be shared. The game creates way stronger bonds than pinky swearing.

As my college years passed, more things were taken off my “I never” list. Some of these items were originally on the “I would never” list ...

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What I Learned from Returning to Kindergarten Bookmark and Share

What I Learned from Returning to Kindergarten

Tomorrow my daughter “graduates” from kindergarten. Milestones like this always make me sentimental, but this year the bittersweet emotion is amplified by 27.

You see, this was my year to revisit kindergarten. I gave up the security of full-time work for the flexibility of freelancing so I could spend more time with my daughter and volunteer at her school. That meant spending time with 28 little people on a regular basis.

It was a questionable move for someone with workaholic tendencies and a mild dislike for “OPKs” (other people’s kids). Helping in the classroom was unchartered territory. I worried ...

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