27 April 2010

YES MONTH part one by Guest Blogger Sarah H.

It's my great pleasure to introduce you to guest blogger, Sarah Hamilton. She's a lovely, beautiful girl with a great sense of humor. She has great life perspective and I was so excited when she agreed to share her experience with YES MONTH on kalanicut! This is a two part-series and I'll post the second part tomorrow. Sit back and enjoy her great sense of humor and enjoy her journey to saying YES. You will be inspired!

It was the big question at our annual Mardi Gras Party: What are you giving up for Lent? Despite the fact that there were only about five practicing Catholics there, the majority of the guests had lists of demons that they were committing to exorcise—for God or themselves— in 40 long days and nights. “Why is it 40 days again?” my friend asked us. “I think it had something to do with the ark,” another joked as he downed a Hurricane, “and how there was no booze on board.”

The reason for the 40-day ban on fun didn’t seem to matter; what mattered was that we were committed to it (for tonight anyway).  “No sugar, alcohol, meat, gluten, processed foods, or even too much fruit,” rattled off one woman, a pretty and already annoyingly slim Texan, who comes from a place where they shoot bunnies, not eat like them.  Others joined in.

“No chocolate.”
“No cigs.”
The list of “No’s” went on and on. Until someone asked me.

I’m a mom of two little kids, with a pretty demanding full-time job. I get home from work, play with my kids and get them to bed, make lunches, pay bills, buy diapers, plan kid playdates and extra-curriculars, and then do more work. The last time I had a facial was when I opened the dishwasher mid-cycle by mistake. It’s not exactly the life of a hedonist.

I don’t overeat (often).
I don’t drink too much (ever).
I don’t go out much anymore.
I don’t search my soul in therapy.
I don’t shop.
I don’t gamble.
I don’t smoke.
I don’t.  . .believe that I’ve gotten so freaking boring.

Sadly, my life didn’t need to be stripped of anything indulgent. I didn’t need another “Don’t.” I needed a “Do.”  So I decided to say “Yes,” and agree to almost everything presented to me for the whole 40 days.  I tested the crowd to see if they approved. 

“Like the Jim Carrey movie?”  Sort of.  But preferably without my needing a stunt double.  Their interest was definitely peaked. “So if we ask you to do ANYTHING, you have to do it?”  Um, yes?  “Chug this beer through a plastic lawn flamingo!” “Give me $50.”

Hmm. I could see there was going to have to be some fine print on my Yes Month. I decided that my rule would be: agree to all the things that I wouldn’t normally do—with or for people that I genuinely like—because I didn’t have the time to do them.

Where will I find the time? That was the million-dollar question. Somehow, my husband, who also has a full time job and the same two kids, manages to have a slew of hobbies and a very active social life.  So I know it’s possible. Of course, he has a wife. I don’t. But I remained undaunted.

It started with a brunch invitation from a woman I had recently met through friends and instantly liked. Sexy Breakfast, as it was named, was a group of women in television getting together to eat, network, and let’s face it, bitch about stuff. It was at 10:00 a.m. on a Saturday—Four hours after my normal breakfast and not a particularly sexy time. But I said yes to this invitation, left the kids with their dad, and trekked to Venice on a gorgeous Spring day for a two- hour chickfest. I had a blast. I eagerly agreed to join the next one, no matter what month it was in.

The following week, I went out for margaritas to celebrate my friend Hilary’s birthday. To be honest, I would have accepted this invitation outside of Yes Month. The Good Friend Code states that birthday parties are mandatory, especially when the feted is single and brokenhearted. But normally I’d have left much sooner. Not  this night! I’m so glad I stayed because I got to hear all the deliciously scandalous details of my friend Heather’s new book, one of which involved her exploring a fetish I’d never even knew existed. Which gave me lots to discuss with my husband later that night.

That week at home, I tried to use my new agreeable outlook for my family’s requests.
“Can I wear my Cleopatra costume to bed tonight?” Sure.
“Can I drink honey straight out of the bottle?” (which, in the language of a 2 year-old is, “Honey! Bear! Mouth!”)  Okay.
“Feeling frisky?”  (I had to dig deep for this one. It was midnight. I had PMS and Indian Food issues.) You bet I am.

to be continued...

Sarah Hamilton is a mom and VP at E! and Style Networks. Yes, she is available for private parties.

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