The D Word

For about 6 weeks, I’ve been considering what my life might be like as a single woman. Not because that life is one I want, but because I’ve wanted any life but the one I’ve had. I have been intensely unhappy. Brett has been unhappy. We’ve been unhappy separately and together. This sentiment has been rolling around in my body and working its way into my soft tissue.

Following an early departure from drinks with friends (caused by an awkward confrontation that felt juvenile and humiliating), I informed Brett of the following: I couldn’t think of a single reason for us to stay married that didn’t include the fact that we’ve simply always been together and furthermore, (I didn’t actually use the phrase “furthermore” but grandstanding is one of my preferred offensive strategies so it bears clarifying here) if we separated, I could hardly come up with a short list of things I would lose.

The human heart is a dark thing.


For several months Brett and I, for separate but similar reasons, have been working with mental health professionals. In the poker game of family genetics, anxiety, depression, or alcoholism might not be in our particular hand (unless they are), but the cards are certainly in our decks. We’ve got to be prepared if or when they appear. Consequently, medication is part of our care routine. This is complicated business. Anti-depressants rarely manage “it all” on the first attempt and side effects are weird. Excuse me, that’s an understatement–side effects make you feel like someone else is at the steering wheel of your brain.

During these months, we’ve been on deeply personal journeys, re-opening partially healed wounds, digging our heels into the belief that we are worthy of our better selves. It’s emotional puberty – growth is so prevalent it’s physically painful. If you’ve known us, you might not believe me when I tell you this couple, these two people dedicated to reflective, introspective, intellectual exploration, are doing inner work we’ve never come close to before.

We do everything together. We thought we were doing this together too, but I was the first to realize we had actually been alone for months. We hopped on two separate tandem bikes at the same time. Well, fuck.


For 6 weeks, any time Brett needed my generosity or empathy or compassion, my mind generated a future where I was free; not of him, necessarily, but of his need for me. I started to consider if I was an obstacle to Brett’s healing. I began to link both thoughts together. And like water rising, these thoughts eventually overflowed and outward to him: “I can’t think of a reason for us to stay married. I wouldn’t lose a single thing if we didn’t.”

It was as awful as you think it was. But worse because I was there, and you weren’t. And I said all the horrible things, and you didn’t. We fought all night and slept in separate rooms and woke up gutted and ignored each other all day.

I volunteered at a local butterfly garden the next morning (because I am Amanda all day, every day) and afterwards, while sobbing in the McDonald’s drive-thru waiting for my lunch, I had a horrible realization: I had absolutely no one to call for help. I needed a friend so desperately but couldn’t think of a single person I was close enough to that would understand.

Because I have billed myself as Mrs. Marriage. Mrs. Marriage cannot call you and tell you she is contemplating divorce.

I’ve officiated 3 weddings. Brett and I have been together for 10 years. These are lovely things and I’m proud of them. But I’ve created a ridiculous ethos for myself with regard to relationships and marriage – I’ve dressed myself up like some sort of sage; as if I have access to special knowledge. Come to me for answers. It’s complete bullshit.

I had ice skated into the center of the pond, doing triple axels the entire way while proselytizing about it. Now, I was out in the middle and realized not only was the ice under my feet dangerously thin, but all my friends were couples skating on the thickest, safest ice in the pond. If they could even hear my cries for help at all, they wouldn’t understand me.

Through all my efforts of transparency and authenticity and vulnerability in the hopes that I might help someone else’s marriage, I had completely failed to find a sage of my own to turn to. Shit.


I have one mode of processing: verbal. In the absence of a confidant, I had one person to whom I could turn. Brett. This did not start pretty, friends. It felt a great deal like picking a scab, actually.

Here is a short, edited transcript of the conversation:

Me: “What the hell?”
Brett: “Go to hell!”
Me: “Fix all our problems.”
Brett: “I’m not the only cause of all our problems.”
Me [VERY unhappy this is clearly true]: “Fix something anyway.”
Brett: “You’re being pretty damn mean, don’t you think?”
Me: “Yes, I’m being mean on purpose because I am very hurt and angry.”
Brett [VERY unhappy this is clearly true]: “Stop it!”

These are, obviously, the highlights. Toward the middle/end of the furious parts, Brett lobbed a fastball into the center of the strike zone: “You’ve made your love conditional.” This gave me pause because the truth, even when you are angry, is still the truth. And the truth is a pathway to healing. If you are brave enough, when the truth shows up in your relationship, you can get naked and show up beside it. I don’t know if this ever gets any easier, but I do think it can happen with less resistance the more you practice. Showing up naked next to truth looked like this for me:

“You’re right. I’ve been in so much pain lately. I wasn’t prepared for the impact your mental health journey would have on me and I should have sought support immediately. I spoke out of malice, so I could hurt you and that isn’t fair or in alignment with my character. I deserve happiness in this marriage, but that’s not how I want to find it.”

Brett can tell you what showing up naked next to the truth looks like for him sometime himself, if you ever want to ask him.


Being a healthy person is hard as hell. Being married is hard as hell. Doing both at the same time is damn near impossible. Anyone who tells you differently is trying to sell you something.

I do not want to divorce Brett, but I did want to scare him into loving me better. Brett doesn’t want to burden me but does need tremendous support to manage his mental health. But know this – your partner does not have infinite capacity to hold space for you. We are not infinite vessels, even in the context of unconditional love. Great partners create this illusion, but you must be a conscientious steward of it. Your bad behavior has consequences, even if it takes place on the path toward wellness. We build up collateral in our relationships with impact, not intent.

How do we carry on? I, for one, aim to find the tools I am not equipped with. I need to find a new therapist and schedule more regular visits. I need to read some old love notes and remind myself what being with Brett has always been about. I need to find someone who has been married for longer than I have that I can call when shit gets bad (currently accepting applications). Brett has an agenda of his own.

I believe in the healing power of vulnerability. Without a strong foundation of emotional expression, I’m not certain Brett and I could have navigated through (let alone to) this particular challenge. To that end, I’m recommitting to this blog as another tool for restoration and a strategy to invest in myself as well as others. I hope someone, least of all me, knows themselves a little more intimately as a result.


I wrote this post prior to Kate Spade dying from suicide. It feels more important than ever to share my family’s journey with mental health with our friends, family, and neighbors, and to remind anyone who might read this, to know – you are not alone if you have felt badly, if your marriage or relationship is far from perfect, or if tomorrow seems like it will be the very same as today. There is help available to you, now and always. https://suicidepreventionlifeline.org

We had a bad morning.

I say this in case for some reason you have been caught up in our #mosersonparade world and are under the false impression that Brett and I are living in an Instagram filter all day.

We are not.

I love to share the fun stuff because it makes me happy. It helps me remember. It reminds me what’s good and what my gifts are. But there are a lot of things that aren’t fun too. A lot of that is private and really personal. But it’s important too. And talking about it helps Fight Perfection. Presenting authenticity is part of my Why. I love doing life with y’all and I want you to trust me and to know me well.

Today Brett and I got in a fight about a poop joke. I wish I was being silly, but I’m just not.

(I thought about writing this post without going into details. But I just couldn’t. It didn’t seem right. I’m sorry.)

It was like this: Brett made some off the cuff remark about me hitting up the bathroom twice this morning (IS THIS MY BAD KARMA COMING BACK AT ME?!) and I made some snarky joke back and the next thing you know, he’s sulking and I’m calling him out and he’s hollering and I am like WHAT HAVE I GOTTEN MYSELF INTO I SHOULD HAVE MOVED TO SPAIN AND NEVER GOTTEN MARRIED.

I’m going to share something I’m not proud of: I go for the low blow 100% of the time. If the shot is available to me, I take it.

Brett: “I just feel like no one ever takes me seriously.”
Amanda: “No one takes you seriously because you whine like a little bitch all the time.”

I am, truly, a garbage person.

But it gets better. We get to work, hop on Google Chat, and KEEP FIGHTING.

Brett calls me a bully. (He’s right) I call him a coward. We are both being just the worst. We finally back down and get tired and realize that things have gotten a fuzz out of hand. We’re both mad at each other for not letting it go and giving the other person a pass. Sometimes we are okay at this. Other times, we really drop the ball.

It’s tough to live with your best friend. Knowing everything about them often means you have all the ammunition to kick them when they’re down. My standard relationship advice is “Be patient and be kind,” and I was neither of those things this morning and it sucked. Nothing is at once more terrible and more satisfying than hurting the ones we love.

We tend to be extra gentle after a round of emotional boxing and we bought lunch and ate at a park and talked about Airplane! and our very favorite Little Debbie’s snacks (Oatmeal Cream Pies-Amanda, Cosmic Brownies-Brett). We bought a plant for my office. We probably won’t fight again for weeks. We will say Hey I love you a lot and go to the movies and send each other cards and hold hands on the couch. The good stuff. The #mosersonparade stuff.

I want to give you this story because I want to tell you that you are not horrible. You and your partner aren’t fighting more than any other couple in the history of the world ever has. You are not missing out on happily ever after because you’re single. Life is hard work and the maintenance is unbelievable. I love to share about the real stuff in person with my friends when I can because we are all just learning together, but in case we can’t sit on the patio with a glass of wine, I wanted to tell you. The Mosers are painfully human.

I hope the sun is shining when you read this because that’s a gift to everybody. So is being honest and broken but looking for moments of redemption. I love you. Happy Friday.

A Good Husband

If I could offer another piece of useless advice to those who want to lose weight, it would be this: have a really good husband. I could devote an entire blog to how awesome Brett is, but for the sake of brevity, I will containing my gushing to the following post.

Having a support team is really important to achieve any goal. Humans are pack animals and we need our herd to be of one mind. Having that support team living in your house with you is even more important. Having a supportive spouse is something that I can take for granted. It is an element of our lives that we really only notice when it is not there. I have got it and I have been lucky enough to have always had it.

Last night, after kickboxing I came home to an awesome treat from Brett. I had mentioned wanting to eat mac and cheese when I lost 20 pounds and he hooked me up! We had mac and cheese with hot dogs and it was the very best junk food I have had in my life. He even printed up this great banner and hung it up in the kitchen, congratulating me on my success (complete with inside joke.)


hot dogs

junk food

One of my Valentine’s Day presents from Brett was a yearlong subscription to Brettflix! Brett plans a special movie and a dinner once a month. In February, he made jambalaya and we watched The Princess and the Frog. This month it was Flight of the Conchords and kabobs. (As in: “Let’s get in a cab, I’ll buy you a kebab! Now I can’t believe that I’m sharing a kebab with the most beautiful girl I have ever seen with a kebab.”)

kabobs

dinner

As you can tell by the pictures, they were amazing! We ate so much. (Can you tell we express love through food?!)

Brett is constantly cheering me on. He is always telling me how well I am doing. He eats what I cook and he rarely complains (even if he does not always comply!) Spouses have a big influence on your lifestyle. Like all things, it can be done without all the pieces falling perfect into place, but it certainly only helps to have their support.

Lately, even though I move at a snail’s pace comparatively, Brett has been running with me. He makes dinner on Monday nights while I kickbox. He cheers me on when I feel crummy. He is really the best and he deserves all my thanks and appreciation on this journey.

Living Under Grace

The great thing about writing a blog is that it makes you look awesome. For one, there is a layer of awesomeness that comes from simply authoring a blog at all. Cool people blog. The other, more significant factor is, of course, that I control the creative content. Cool people blog about being cool people.

When I look back through my posts, I see the type of person I want to be. Curious. Introspective. Articulate (thanks spell check!) I have been running, kickboxing, bicycling, cooking, reading. I have shared real and actual progress toward my weight loss goals.

But I’m not always so spot on. Actually, most of the time I am flailing around, tripping over the uneven ground I have paved for myself, and reaching out at the last moment to be pulled up by the strong arms of the gracious folks around me (Jesus. My husband Brett. My boss. My parents. My friends.)

Continue reading “Living Under Grace”

Moser Valentine’s

Brett and I love Valentine’s Day. We almost always doing something special for each other and it is honestly one of my favorite holidays. I love giving gifts and cooking up surprises. After six Valentine’s Day’s together, we’re still having a good ole time! Here was our evening, in photos:

Brett’s gift- Tickets to see Weird Al perform in Kansas City in June! (Given on the condition that I’m not required to go with him!)

IMG_3757

Continue reading “Moser Valentine’s”

Am I Crazy?

I want to start this post by saying that I blame everything that follows on three people. It’s their fault COMPLETELY.

Those three people are as follows:

Rachel. Rachel. Sarah.

Let’s start with Rachel #1. My original healthy friend. The girl who is always eating the salad at the bar. Who prefers kale to chocolate. Who makes brownies with dates in them. I’ve pretty much always envied the way she respects her body, even if I’ve usually found it bananas.

On to Rachel #2. Here’s where it gets really hairy. Rachel is like a role model to me. She’s healthy as a way of life. She routinely gives up sugar. She rides her bike to work. She swims. She hikes. She runs. She just totally gets it. I try to be more like her everyday.

And finally Sarah. I have the biggest beef with Sarah. When I met her, I immediately recognized a kindred (though thinner) spirit. We gagged in unison at the idea of a vegan restaurant. We helped consume two very large pizzas and several pint glasses of beer with our guys with as much zeal and as many helpings. We both bitched about the size of our thighs while recognizing how very little we actually do about it. AND THEN SHE BETRAYED ME. Sarah is getting married this year and finally decided- to hell with it. She’s taking control of her diet and her lifestyle. She went on this wackadoo two week vegan diet. She tried a detox. She’s doing so awesome. She’s awesome.

Worst of all? She’s making me seriously consider giving it a try myself. 

Continue reading “Am I Crazy?”

52 Photos, Week 3

This week’s story: Last night while putting up my Christmas decorations (yes, I finally did it) I did something weird to my lower back. Pulled a muscle or something. I felt awful and crawled up into bed at about 9pm.

It’s a bad sign when back breaking pain is the preferable feeling. At about 1:30 I woke up with a wave a nausea and so began the night from hell. I was in the bathroom about every 45 minutes with no sleep in between. No food? No problem. Still puked.

At 8 am Brett took me to the doctor (where I threw up twice) and I got a shot for nausea and vomiting. This has pretty much put me to sleep (or kept puke from interrupting my much needed sleep, I’m not sure which).

Needless to say, the Love Dare, Day Two was put on hiatus (not to mention working, eating, etc.) but true to my promise, here is potentially one of the worst photos ever taken of me for my 52 photos challenge. Enjoy!

(Editor’s note: Brett didn’t give me two black eyes. I chose this Instagram filter because it made me look extra dead. Good work huh?!)