HAPPY BLESSED MARCH HAS ARRIVED! This year we welcomed winter with wide open arms because it’s the first “real” winter we’ve experienced together. Until this year we’ve always lived in the south where winter is a thing for a month, max. We didn’t go out too much in February because it was so cold, usually opting instead to stay cuddled up at home with each other and our pups. We went a few (new-to-us) local places but we didn’t go too far outside of Charleston. That gives us a lot to look forward to in March because we’re finally going to be getting out exploring again.  

Brandon and I chose “Cherish” as our word of the year for 2018; at the beginning of each month I’m sharing a check-in to update you on how we’re living our word of the year. Our goal is to stay focused on taking time to appreciate where we are in life and being content with our day-to-day. 

February Recap

Early in the month of February Brandon mentioned to me that we should make 2018 our “year of healing”. If you remember in my Cherish: February post I mentioned that we had a family member have major surgery and Brandon was sick with bronchitis. Well, we discovered that wasn’t exactly true. Without disclosing too much of a story that isn’t mine suffice to say that my husband has been through a lot of trauma and a few years ago he was prescribed Klonopin to help manage anxiety and symptoms from PTSD. He’s been pushing to come off of it as neither of us have wanted him to be dependent on medication. At the beginning of February, his doctor told him he was ok to stop taking it (he’d been weaned down a bit). Well, apparently his doctor didn’t wean him down far enough because he was thrown into pretty intense withdrawals. It’s those withdrawals that the doctor’s told us were bronchitis and a potential heart issue. 

It’s been a month and he’s doing a lot better now. If you’re not familiar with withdrawals associated with benzodiazepines, they are really intense. There are massive headaches, insomnia, risk of seizures, “brain zaps”, memory troubles, muscle aches, etc. The lingering effects of the withdrawals may last for months so we’re focusing this year on healing mentally and physically. We did take a few days and go out toward my family’s place where we could enjoy a weekend in the country where it’s quiet and relaxed. That weekend helped him de-stress a bit and we were able to get through the worst days of his withdrawal.

Open farm field in Sandyville West Virginia

We also did a little bit of local exploring to get more familiar with locally-owned businesses in the area. We found a lot of great places down in the East End and in downtown Charleston which inspired us to join in the local dish to share our favorite places to eat in Charleston, WV. Down in the East End we found a great local record store which is Brandon’s new happiest place on earth. We spent about an hour there letting him dig through records while I browsed the used bookstore in the back. It’s a place we’ll definitely revisit especially since there’s a coffee shop across the street that completely stole our hearts. 

Sullivan's Records in Charleston West Virginia

February was about healing, cherishing our health, and learning to appreciate the locally-owned placed that support the area where we live. It was a quiet month but for the end of winter, it was fabulous. We needed a quiet low-key month to allow us to recharge and focus on the future including goals we have for ourselves personally and professionally.

March – Looking Ahead

This month there is a Celtic Calling festival downtown that we’re planning to attend and we’re hoping to make a day-trip down to Kentucky to do a little bit of small-town exploring. That is one thing we’re hoping to do more of this year – small town USA travel. We have a big trip to Pittsburgh coming up in the middle of March but we want to do a lot of small-town trips too. Brandon is starting to work on a few new novels and stories which revolve pretty heavily around small-town society so those travel experiences are essential to building that framework for his work. We’ll be sharing those trips on Instagram in our stories so if you don’t follow me now’s a good time to join in. You can follow my IG here.

We are hoping to schedule more breakfast dates this month too. Breakfast dates used to be one of our favorite things but the winter months kept us indoors a lot so breakfast dates stopped being a thing. This month I want to train myself to cherish the early morning hours and scheduling breakfast dates is going to go a long way in helping me change my mindset and start the day off with an appreciation for those early morning hours. Besides, that coffee shop we discovered in the East End has amazing breakfast! 

Starlings Coffee Shop in Charleston West Virginia

How was your February? What are you up to this March?