Glee, Cyndi Lauper, Tears & Why

I found my Glee soundtrack CDs again and had my own little mini concert this morning that took me down memory lane. Just as I was really getting into Cyndi Lauper’s True Colors something clicked and I started to cry, which is really fucking annoying when you’re trying to win a Grammy for best new Karaoke Artist before work.

This whole ‘learn to be vulnerable’ and ‘feel shit’ is cramping my IDGAF attitude. Why did I start therapy again? For a long while, I was able to control my emotions and only show anger or happiness with the notion it would be a cold day in hell before I’d let anyone see me cry.

Well, it’s winter and I’m crying to True Colors at 8 a.m. and now blogging about it for the 1,000 of you to read about. So this must be Hell.

Instead of ignoring the tears, telling myself to suck it the fack up, and beating myself up for getting emotional… I did what Daring Greatly, Braving The Wilderness, and Girl Wash Your Face asks you to ask yourself: why am I getting emotional. Can you identify the why?

So while I continued to belt out the lyrics, and cry, I tried to string together what was running through my head and how it could be related to my now puffy eyes and running nose. And realized I was thinking about my upcoming trip to Florida and how it was going to be strange to possibly see people that know me, who have a history with me and have seen some of my worst days, and how familiar it would all feel.

And how uncomfortable that familiarity felt.

My thoughts also wandered to a family that welcomed me as their own. We had Wednesday night dinners and a no cell phone rule during dinners. They took me in as one of their own and I started to imagine what it would be like to see them all again.

It made me happy and warm to imagine walking into her home again…cue tears.

I chewed on the uncomfortableness with familiarity and why happy and warm would make me weepy…and came to the conclusion this is one of the parts of me I killed off a long time ago in order to protect myself from getting emotionally hurt. Let’s break it down.

Uncomfortableness with familiarity: it’s no secret I spent a lot of time saying goodbye because of the excessive moving from state to state, deployments, and then regular goodbyes of life regarding friendships, and family relationships. I coped and overcompensated by learning to never get attached to one place, person or thing.

Happy and warm: something inside of me enjoyed the idea that I’d be around people who knew me and have known me for a while. It’s been such a long time since I’ve been around familiar faces and places. Florida and this home are nostalgic.

Conclusion: Never getting attached to a place, person or thing made it easier to leave (because undoubtfully I’d be leaving again so why get dependant on a relationship or home that I know won’t last?) with the least amount of emotional turmoil. It let me feel independent from those emotions. Does that make sense?

I got weepy because I let myself feel it.







10 Ways to Dare Greatly According to Brene Brown – How Many Are You Doing?

Hey, it’s Monday and my eyes and nose are so swollen I have to keep my eyebrows raised in order to see through my eyelids. No really. I tried this new face cream by Loreal and it blew my face up like a balloon. It has collagen in it and I don’t think you’re supposed to carelessly rub it all over your face, which I did because patience is not my strong suit.

Anyways, I hope everyone reading is having a good start to their week and if you’re not…at least you don’t look like this….


Last night I started reading my first (and I’m assuming the first of many) Brene Brown book titled Daring Greatly and within the first damn page had me pegged. The fact she nailed down one of my biggest flaws regarding relationships almost sent me slamming the book shut out of pure stubbornness and refusal to believe some random stranger could know me. As if!

The line that got me was this, “keep people at a safe distance and always have an exit strategy,” and the first thing I thought was, “No! Other people do this, too? This isn’t a problem!”

For as long as I can remember, having an exit strategy has always been super important to my own mental survival and not just when it relates to relationships or connecting with others.

Whenever I’m surrounded by large crowds (parades, movie theaters, restaurants) I make sure to note where the exits are in case of an emergency. Even when I get stopped waiting for a train to pass, I leave a car length spot in front of me just in case I have to be able to maneuver out of the line of cars to safety.

Being trapped and not being able to get out is my number one fear. It’s what my nightmares depict, so it only makes sense I keep people at a safe distance paired with an equally safe (for me) exit strategy.

What’s equally as interesting is that for the past two decades I have spent a good chunk of time getting myself out of sticky, tricky, and sometimes life-threatening situations. So how come I still fear it? Do I lack self-confidence in myself or am I paranoid?

I struggle with self-confidence but not in this aspect of the word, protecting myself and staying safe has consistently been my strong suit and it’s possible I’m too good at it. So much so that I know I don’t technically need anyone to help me make big decisions or guide me through life. I’ve proved it true numerous times, so it reinforces the thought “relationships are a burden.”

This safe distance blockade I’ve built was invisible to me up until a year ago. I didn’t even know I was doing it, or aware/curious that this might be why I struggle with every relationship I’ve ever tried to have, and recently realized my technique for protection didn’t avoid my marriage.

It sucks to have to write this sentence, but it’s true. I feel like we all know marriages these days don’t last, and while I love my husband like no other and would kill for him if need be, I still have an exit strategy just in case it doesn’t work out between us in the end, because I don’t want to be unprepared for the worst and depending on someone else to get me through.

The thought of asking for help is still widely unpopular with me. I’d rather have a couple root-canals and do leg day every day of the week than ask for help.

In short, reading this book is going to be interesting. There’s a part of me who’s really excited to see where this journey of self-discovery is going to lead, with a high hope me sharing will help someone else reading.

But I’m also afraid I might recognize a few traits I’ll need to alter that will be easier said than done.

Brene Brown also gives a list of guidelines to wholehearted living that I want you to ponder, as I’ve been mentally digesting it for 24-hours now and is also what Daring Greatly helps get its readers to do.

  1. Cultivating Authenticity: Letting Go of What People Think
  2. Cultivating Self-Compassion: Letting Go of Perfectionism
  3. Cultivating a Resilient Spirit: Letting Go of Numbing and Powerlessness
  4. Cultivating Gratitude and Joy: Letting Go of Scarcity and Fear of the Dark
  5. Cultivating intuition and trusting faith: Letting Go of the Need for Certainty
  6. Cultivating Creativity: Letting Go of Comparison
  7. Cultivating Play and Rest: Letting go of Exhaustion As A Status Symbol and Productivity As Self-Worth
  8. Cultivating Calm and Stillness: Letting Go of Anxiety As a Lifestyle
  9. Cultivating Meaningful Work: Letting Go of Self-Doubt and ‘Supposed To”
  10. Cultivating Laughter, Song, and Dance: Letting Go of Being Cool and ‘Always in Control”

How many are you actively doing? I can only say two or three, possibly. I’ve never struggled with perfectionism and exhaustion as a lifestyle doesn’t seem like a thing I do, who knows, I might get to that chapter and choke on my own words.

So, to all my ladies out there still reading this long ass post—download Audible and create an account if you don’t have one because you get one FREE book as a thank you for signing up, so go read this damn book and join in on the convo with me.

Cultivate it.

I’ve Got Stamina

I’m late, I know. This should’ve been posted by 9 a.m. but I wasn’t sure what I wanted to blog about today and was waiting for something to present itself.

Well, nearly two hours later it has hit me.

I’m sitting in my office listening to Sia’s The Greatest, typing up my first script for Someone Like You podcast and I’m tearing up.

If you can’t recall the lyrics by heart, here’s a snip:

Uh-oh, running out of breath, but I
Oh, I, I got stamina
Uh-oh, running now, I close my eyes
Well, oh, I got stamina
And uh-oh, I see another mountain to climb
But I, I, I got stamina
Uh-oh, I need another lover, be mine
Cause I, I, I got stamina

Don’t give up, I won’t give up
Don’t give up, no no no
Don’t give up, I won’t give up
Don’t give up, no no no

I’m free to be the greatest, I’m alive
I’m free to be the greatest here tonight, the greatest
The greatest, the greatest alive
The greatest, the greatest alive


For the first time in my life, I feel genuinely happy and not because a vacation is around the corner, my Hubs surprised me with a gift or I achieved a goal I was working towards.

My insides are happy just because…

Like, so happy I want to cry about it, haha.

I’m working on a podcast that focuses on solving (or creating a conversation that leads to solving — I’m good with either notion) the homeless youth problem we have in America.

It has lit a fire in me I’ve been waiting for and it feels so. damn. good.

What’s even more insane is that I’ve shared it with the people I care about. The fact I’ve given this goal a voice (instead of silently working it over in my head over and over) and it’s felt so good to talk about it, before (and kinda still now) I thought giving it a voice would jinx it.

Something inside me has been freed.

I don’t spend weeks editing a blog post before hitting publish. The words to describe my feelings, ideas, wishes or recent enlightenment, come a lot easier than in recent years.

And after almost 30 years of not liking myself as a person, I think I’m finally starting to truly love myself for the first time, ever.

Blogs are meant to serve the audience, and while I’m not sure this one does anything for you (the reader) I hope it (at least) encourages you to keep trying to find the ‘thing’ that lights you on fire, because everyone deserves to feel the warmth inside I’m now feeling for the first time and I want it for you, too.

Or maybe it helps you acknowledge you don’t love yourself and makes you want to find out how…

There’s no one solution to finding your fire or loving yourself, but I can tell you that surrounding yourself with people who are really for you and are safe is a start, because even when you don’t believe in yourself, that tribe of supporters will help you see the light, eventually (depending on how stubborn you can be or how resistant to a tribe you are, full disclosure: I was both).

You have to want to grow, acknowledge why you are the way you are and grieve the losses (slights from your parents, wishes that were never granted, privileges others got that you weren’t graced with, etc.) that have occurred throughout your life.

Everybody has problems. You’re not any different. Begin to figure out how to let them go and grow.

My tribe is filled with people I didn’t want on the inside three years ago, including co-workers. I did a few process groups (aka, group therapy) and read a few self-help books (Safe People by Henery Cloud, The Big Leap by Gay Hendricks), and then did the work needed internally.

I’m not done, but I’ve got stamina.

Cultivate it.

RamblinRandol is about finding yourself and learning to love yourself again. Life is real and raw, there’s no room for perfection here. If you’d like to join the Hot Mess Express tribe where we discuss the daily struggle and bring real life to light, come hang out in my new Facebook group, here


Be my friend on Instagram @shannahan22  



Oh, For Crying Outloud


While grieving the loss of my Grandmother, I began to video myself talking through all of the emotions I felt. For some reason, I felt giving my silent thoughts a voice would make me feel better.

There was no intention to share the recordings when I made them, so there was no pressure to sound smart or be on point. I could just be, and let the emotions wash through me.

To my surprise, the entire process made me feel better – even though I knew nobody would see it. The fact I had done it for myself was empowering and healing. Who knew?

After each time I hit the stop button on the recording, I was able to set down the twirling cloud of feelings and anxiety happening in my head. Apparently, there have been studies done on benefits from speaking aloud.

Now it’s been a month and I think it’s time to share one of my videos, especially after remembering my New Year Promise to myself I wrote about in New Year Same OG.  I’m throwing out my rulebook and listening to my inner voice, and my internal dialog is telling me to share.

Even though I’m thinking of all of the potential people who could see this that I don’t want seeing this … 

Showing any emotion is tough for me. I only know how to be happy or mad, sadness in my book is for the weak and I’ve spent twenty years making sure there was no question about my physical and mental toughness.

Plus, isn’t there an unspoken pressure nowadays to seem more put together than before? Even though we all know it’s bullshit to be 100% a hundred percent of the time, we still feel compelled to act whole. So how do we break this ideal?

Maybe it’s to share the realness of life’s ups and downs more so than not.

While death is a part of life, it’s hard to process and deal with the emotions that arise. How am I supposed to set down the fact my Grandmother and I weren’t close, that the last time I saw her was eight years ago and had I not pushed to facetime with her, that really would’ve been the last living and breathing memory.

“Grief is like the ocean; it comes on waves ebbing and flowing. Sometimes the water is calm, and sometimes it is overwhelming. All we can do is learn to swim.” Vikki Harrison

How do you deal with the guilt that comes from the passing of a loved one? Because I’m sucking at letting it go.

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Inhale Acceptance Exhale Caddyness

Can we all practice the art of inhaling acceptance and exhaling caddyness? I read somewhere that it takes more muscles to frown than to smile, and I’m positive it’s the same rule for being negative and choosing to be happy.

I’m guilty of gossiping and being caddy. Sometimes I even feel obligated to contribute to the office gossiping to “fit in,” which is nobody’s problem but my own. What I’m hoping to convey is my own flaw, how it makes me crazy, why I don’t want to do it anymore and how I’m going to move forward.


It feels like the older I get, the more I notice it. Caddyness is displayed on magazine articles, social media news feeds and is circulated in office cliques. For example, the most recent article I scrolled past by HuffPost was titled, Angelina Jolie Shades Jennifer Aniston During Speech.

Why do pitting two females against one another generate clicks? Ps: the image they use as reference is a millisecond of an instance. I’m sure the second image on that camera was both of them paying attention to each other, but no one will ever ask that question because the first assumption is more exciting.

For the record I’m not even a fan of Angelina Jolie and it still bothers me because of the principle that this is a normal caddyness expected.

We’re all guilty of participating in the age old saying, get it off your chest you’ll feel better mentality, but not all thoughts need to be expressed. There’s another age old saying about misery loves company, and it shouldn’t fall on deaf ears when being paired with the notion negative energy manifests more negative energy.

This is especially toxic when done in a working environment. I’ve worked in retail, the restaurant industry and office life – no job title is safe from the drama or caddyness. Try to remember (especially if you’re in close quarters) not everyone enjoys listening to you complain about how everyone else should be living their lives and how many lingering ears can overhear you?

                *Also, can we stop using the word should? Because who are you to tell anyone how they should be doing something? Nobody wants to constantly hear how someone should be living their life, because guess what? You’re fucking up the same amount of times as everyone else – you’re no different, so who are you to judge or tell anyone anything. If you ain’t Oprah, I don’t want to hear it – actually, sorry Oprah, I still don’t want to hear it …

I think it’s safe to say, if you feel entitled in giving advice to every living soul about how they should be living, you might want to turn that voice inward and figure out why you feel obligated to tell others how to live. I have a book for you to read that might help, too.

Bottom line: a real queen helps another queen adjust her crown. It’s hard enough to be a woman and there’s no need to waste any of our personal time tearing down one another.


I’m making a conscious effort to pause when I start to use the word should and another hard effort to not feel obligated to participate in harmful gossip.

We’re all on this ridiculous ride called life and we’re all doing the best we can. No job title is safe from the drama or caddyness, but maybe we can be the variable that causes a ripple effect.