I’m tired, I love you and I need a break

by Charlotte on July 3, 2014 · 103 comments

blogger

I need to take a break from this blog for a bit. I need to reevaluate what I want from it and for it because for about the past year I feel like it – no I – have gotten really stagnant. Which isn’t fair to any of us! You guys deserve fresh, interesting, funny stuff and I deserve… well, I don’t honestly know at this point. This is the convergence of several things that have been brewing for a while:

1. I’m basically back to exactly where I started from. When I started this blog, I had just started my journey to health. I’d been doing a bodybuilder-type diet and running with some weight lifting for about a year prior. (At that point I was definitely one of those people terrified of the free weights who stuck to machines but hated them because they weren’t any fun yet knew I was “supposed to” lift weights so I did.) While my diet and exercise were both pretty bland, they worked and helped me drop the last 10 pounds of baby weight I was carrying.

But of course I wanted more! More weight loss, more strength, more speed, more… crazy? So I started this blog with the intent to try out every fitness and diet trend on the planet to find which ones worked the best. And I did that for about five years. What I learned is that pretty much every exercise program “works” and every diet doesn’t – meaning that you can increase your health and fitness with just about any exercise program you like and that for long-term weight loss and health most “diets” aren’t helpful.

During that whole discovery process, I went to allllll kinds of extremes (as many of you well remember). I dropped a ton of weight, ended up with an overexercising compulsion and made myself sick both mentally and physically. Then, with the help of medical professionals and you all, I have been in recovery for several years now. I think given my predilections for extremes I always be recovering but I am light years better than I was. I pretty much eat what I want now, listening to my hunger, and while I still work out about six days a weeks it’s now much gentler and shorter and I don’t freak out if I miss a day or two.

The net result is that naturally I gained back all the weight I’d lost doing this blog so I am pretty much the same size, weight, shape and fitness level as I was when I started on my mission to get my best body ever.

Yet rather than feeling like a failure for not achieving that goal, I feel like I’ve grown past it, in a totally different direction than I originally started out but so much growth nonetheless. I’ve learned A TON, starting with the fact that whatever body I have is the best because it’s awesome and helps me accomplish what I need to in life. I’ve also learned that there is no such thing as a perfect body and that spending all my time thinking, writing and manipulating my food/exercise to get it is a waste of time at best and deeply disordered at worst. And there’s all the fun workouts and interesting research I’ve learned to love! I’ve tried so many new things I might not have had the opportunity to do otherwise.

But the irony is that all those workouts and research led me back to nearly the same place I started from. While I knew deep down there wasn’t a magic elixir or exercise program I think I still hoped there was and if I could just read all the research and try everything I’d find the hacks I was looking for. I still want to be healthy and I will still keep doing the things that make me feel good but extreme “healthy living” is basically the new religion in our society and I just can’t be its evangelist anymore. Sometimes I feel like a fraud because I don’t want to think about diets and exercise and weight loss and everything that goes with it, all the time. (Which isn’t meant to be insulting to anyone who does want to think about those things  - it’s just not the place I’m in right now.)

I don’t regret any of it but I also don’t want to keep spinning my wheels. There’s a huge, wonderful world to explore:)

2. My family.  When I started this blog (in 2007… whoa!) my kids were teeny tiny and Jelly Bean wasn’t even born yet. I was a stay-at-home mom whose life revolved around nap schedules and potty training (important, for sure, but stultifying) and at that time in my life having a time for exercise blocked out every day was exactly what I needed. The Gym Buddies, who also all had tiny kiddos, were my lifeline and the gym was my social group, my therapy, my sanity saver, my entertainment and I will always be grateful for that. Those ladies and everyone else at the Burnsville, Minnesota YMCA saved me.

But now my kids are much older (12, 10, 8, 4) and have all the things that go with being an older kid. They don’t need me to wipe their butts anymore (THANK HEAVENS) but they need way more of my time, emotion and energy than before. Instead of them tagging along and being a part of whatever I was doing in my life, the roles are reversing and now it’s me tagging along as their lives expand and grow. Which is exactly how it should be and I want to be there whenever they want me to be because honestly I only have a few years left before they won’t always want me around.

Before, the hours seemed long and I needed a diversion from the monotony of little kids (sorry, yes, I said it) but now the hours fly by and it’s killing me to try and find time to fit in blogging. I don’t want to be sitting alone, clacking away on my keyboard, while they play without me. It’s too hard on me emotionally. I’m done saying “Just one more minute!” …for 60 minutes. Or staying up until 2 a.m. And I know that so many of you totally get this.

3. I’ve turned into a huge wuss. I don’t know if it’s just me being ultra sensitive or if things really are changing but it seems like all the cultural commentary has gotten so much more negative. We all stew in a culture of criticism and it permeates everything. I get so much more hate mail and comments than I used to and it just doesn’t roll off my back like it used to anymore. I used to just be able to shake it off (Oooh an angry person on the internet? Shocking!) but now it takes a lot out of me. It does hurt. And while I have so many amazingly kind and patient readers/commenters, the negative ones are the ones that seem to really stick with me. It’s not fair, it’s not right and I hate that my mind works that way. (It wasn’t always so) But it is what it is.

After that Isagenix debacle a few days ago, I was literally shaking and crying all day. People are needlessly cruel. They’re cruel not even to further their argument or make a point but just for the sake of being cruel. I hate feeling like there are so many people just watching and waiting for me to screw up so they can pounce. And it’s not just me, it’s everywhere. It seems like there’s a small group of people out there doing new things, trying stuff, having adventures, giving opinions… and also doing all the mistakes inherent with trying new things. And then there’s a much larger group who make their living waiting for the first group to screw up so they can have something to talk about. Nothing gets page clicks like righteous indignation. And while some things are genuinely worth getting mad over, it’s not nearly as many as we do. And I’m not putting myself above any of it – I’ve been on both sides and I’m tired of both.

All of which means that I often write from a place of fear these days. I worry over every word – Is this offensive? Is this funny? Is this thoroughly fact-checked? Is this grammatically correct? I anticipate which things people will object to and come up with a defense. Or I just write pablum that I know everyone will agree with. While obviously some of that is good and makes me a better writer (I welcome constructive criticism, always have) too much is just paralyzing.

This part probably sounds like a total cop-out and maybe it is (Waaah people are mean to me!) but I realized the other day that I’m choosing all of this. But I don’t have to keep choosing it. If I’m going to start complaining then it’s time to take a break.

All of this is so, so scary for me. This blog has been a lifeline to me so many times. I’ve gotten to be friends with SO many of you guys and you have brought so much beauty, wisdom and comfort into my life. And I don’t want to lose that. I don’t want to lose you. I also don’t want to lose what I’ve worked so hard to build here.

Yet I know myself well enough to know that I need to write like I need to eat (actually a closer approximation would be to pee – you know how I love my bodily fluids!) so I’m keeping this blog up. But it’s going to change. I’m not sure exactly how – that’s what I’m taking a break to think about – and I anticipate I’ll lose a lot of you in the transition. But I have to be able to write what I love and that’s not always going to be health/fitness related. (Although let’s be honest, it’s been skewing farther and farther away from that for a year now.) I hope you’ll stay. I’ll understand if you don’t.

Maybe this is a huge mistake. But I need to stop being afraid of making mistakes. I can’t be open to new opportunities unless I’m willing to take a leap.

TL;DR: I’m tired. I love you. I need a break. 

wpid-wp-1402287864531.jpeg

Someone on my other post asked about my lip color in this picture – I’m actually just wearing Dr. Pepper LipSmacker haha! Because I’m a middle schooler. And it’s yummy.

P.S. Yes, I still have my day job writing for Shape, SheKnows, Greatist, The Fix and other great sites. I write 3-8 articles a week for Shape and 6-10 articles a week for SheKnows plus other freelance work so there’s still plenty of me out there (not to mention 7.5 years of archives on this blog) but I will say that most people who read my articles on other sites are slightly disappointed. Since I’m writing for them, I cover their topics using their voice. In other words, you won’t find any beet-fueled bloody entrails over there;)

P.P.S. Mom, TL;DR means “too long; didn’t read” ;)

{ 101 comments… read them below or add one }

Sabrina July 3, 2014 at 10:42 am

I applaud you for taking time out to take care of yourself and figure out what you need this blog to be. Enjoy your time! I’ll be excited to see what your next blog adventure is!

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Leilani July 3, 2014 at 10:44 am

I love your blog but I understand needing to take a step back. Thanks for all the great posts. Best wishes for the future!

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Eliz July 3, 2014 at 10:48 am

So curious about the isagenix debacle? Thought it was a great post. What happened? And now it’s gone? Regardless, love your writing and hope you have some peaceful and productive processing a bout what’s next!

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Bethany July 3, 2014 at 10:48 am

Take good care of yourself and I hope you’ll be back in one way or another before too long. :)

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Alice July 3, 2014 at 10:54 am

<3

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Alice July 3, 2014 at 10:54 am

(That’s a heart because I love you!)

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Jess July 3, 2014 at 11:01 am

Charlotte,

I literally cried reading this – one, because I’ll miss you so very much as you take the time away from TGFE to get the mental/emotional break you need, and two, because I’m so goshdarn proud of you for taking the time in the first place!

“I need to stop being afraid of making mistakes” – this hit home for me and I admire your bravery. Everything happens for a reason! If it ends up being a mistake, it may be the best mistake ever made.

I can’t wait to see the changes and follow you into your next blogging incarnation. You have all my love and support along the way. :)

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Lisa July 3, 2014 at 11:01 am

I give you the long weekend and then I will be looking for you again. ;) Kidding..take as long as you need…I just selfishly hope it isn’t too long. I see you as a kindred spirit in a lot of ways and you won’t lose me..for what that’s worth. :)

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Lisa July 3, 2014 at 11:04 am

Also..debacle???!! I missed it! Also, even tho I have Bugs Bunny muscles, I will get the meanies for you! I am told that my knuckles are really boney and will help.

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Azusmom July 3, 2014 at 11:02 am

Love love love live LOVE you! I think you are the bravest, most honest, most empathetic person on the internet! You can’t see it, but I am giving you a standing ovation for this decision. Because it is YOUR decision, and it is right for you! Sometimes the hardest thing in the world is to step away from the familiar.
And I could not agree more on the negative comments. There ARE people whose only joy comes from trolling websites and shooting others down. They are bullies, and they have no shame. I suppose they should be pitied, but personally I don’t have the time, emotional energy or inclination to give them that kind of consideration. Nor, frankly, do they deserve it.
I WISH I’d gotten in touch with you on the day of that Isagenic post! I’m so sorry I didn’t! I was SO angry, and worried it would affect you negatively.

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Azusmom July 3, 2014 at 11:04 am

Zoiks! Luddite that I am, I hit Publish before I finished.
Anyway, suffice to say, I’m very happy that you’ve made this decision, as much as I will miss your daily posts. You are beautiful and perfect.
And if you need a new theme, maybe The Great Life Experiment? :)
Take care. Love you!

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AdjustedReality July 3, 2014 at 11:09 am

Love your writing, totally understand the tired and need a break thing. Come back and see us when you have words that need to come out. We’ll miss you! :)

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Sabrina July 3, 2014 at 11:10 am

P.S. Remember that post you did on snapping hip syndrome in yoga practitioners, runners, and dancers? I wrote in the comments that I had been having ongoing hip pain, and those three forms of exercise are my favorite. Well, I finally went to the doctor about it, and am going to start PT next week. Thank you for your post; it helped nudge me to finally do something about the problem!

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Marste July 3, 2014 at 11:13 am

Charlotte, I love your voice. I’m glad you’ll be back at some point, and I’ll be here when (and if) you decide to come back. *hugs*

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Carole July 3, 2014 at 11:23 am

You are so courageous,envisioning a different and new life! We will miss you so much- but will be happy that you have found your answer to your question.

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Katy Widrick July 3, 2014 at 11:24 am

Blessings and best wishes, friend.

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Rebecca July 3, 2014 at 11:24 am

Love you. It’s ok to need a break. I can’t wait to see what you do next, girl.

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LynM July 3, 2014 at 11:31 am

I love your blog, and have learned so much from it. Thank you.

I’ll miss you, and hope the blog will be back sometime, but enjoy the heck out of those kids of yours. Take it from one who knows, they grow up quickly, and soon you’ll look back and wonder where the time went, but the memories will be the great joy of your life. Don’t miss any of it!

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Jessica July 3, 2014 at 11:35 am

Thanks for showing us your bravery, Charlotte! Enjoy your time and I’ll be here if/when you come back.

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Robyn July 3, 2014 at 11:45 am

You are listening to what YOU need and you need to take care of yourself. Don’t feel any guilt. Your reasons are all valid, including the one about mean people. Best of luck to you!

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Susan Helene Gottfried July 3, 2014 at 11:46 am

Hmm. Maybe I’m the only one who saw this coming. But… glad you’re doing it, kiddo. You need to refocus and I know I’m not the only one who’ll follow you pretty much anywhere, like a snake and the Pied Piper.

I get the fear. But here’s some salve: My editor-self is always here if you have a grammar worry. Okay, maybe not at 2AM (that’s 4AM my time!) but in general. So instead of stressing about your English, stress about why I ain’t answering your email right. This. Second. ;D

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Katelyn July 3, 2014 at 11:52 am

Charlotte, you are such an inspiration! I found your blog during a dark part of my life and know that reading your posts every morning helped pull me out of that place. You taught me that it was ok to love myself and how to do it. So thank you for everything you have written and done. And thank you for continuing to set an amazing example by taking care of yourself in the way you need to!!

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Dad July 3, 2014 at 11:56 am

Wow! Great choice. Love you! See you in the real world.

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Darwin July 3, 2014 at 12:02 pm

Quote: “I have nothing to say.” (reply) “You should blog about it!”

Was this not the basis of “SEINFELD”?

Valid comparison!

Charlotte, you can make funny out of “nothing” in a way to make Jerry jealous.,

Truly, you Charlotte are effortlessly witty and clever and my daily does of hilarious.

SO MUCH upside here!

I know you can toss me study after study regarding “rest time” and whether they are necessary. But I am a firm believer in recovery time. Growth happens in recovery time too.

I am very firm believer in “Rest if you must, but don’t quit.”

Which HAS been a fear of mine from time to time. Too many days off might lead me to lose momentum and motivation and then days turn into a week, and then two…or more…

Its hard when I am the only one who would notice, as I run alone, work out alone, cook alone.
…Talk to myself….(Perhaps it IS time to get over my fear of dating!)

But…

Since December 2013 when I first encountered you blog, I felt warm and fuzzy having Charlotte in my corner.

You are in EVERYBODY’S corner…those who were blessed enough to find your blog.

AND another upside is:

Since I only found your blog December 2013, and you just mentioned that there are 7.5 years of archives, then I can still get my daily dose of fresh Charlotte hilarity and wisdom!

A note about healing my fellow Mormon: I LOVE to find an LDS temple with a cafeteria, show up when it opens, take a pause or two to eat, and be there when it closes.

For a few days.

Saturate. Serve. Soak up the love.

*hugs*

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Lindsey July 3, 2014 at 12:08 pm

I’ve been reading you for years and would miss reading for years more. But I also have loved seeing you grow and go easier on yourself as time has passed. Do what your gut tells you to do! I feel privileged to have had a chance to listen to the musing and ramblings of such a beautiful, brave lady.

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Cindy July 3, 2014 at 12:16 pm

I’m a longtime reader who rarely comments and I just want you to know that your blog always makes me smile! Have fun and enjoy your family! :)

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the Bag Lady July 3, 2014 at 12:29 pm

To everything there is a season….
Love your voice, Charlotte, and I hope you will eventually find time to blog, even if it’s just an occasional update about your life!
Take care of yourself.

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Saskia July 3, 2014 at 12:29 pm

Take your time, we’ll be here when you figure it out.

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Amy D. July 3, 2014 at 12:33 pm

Charlotte, you’re a lovely writer and always keep us engaged whether you’re speaking about fitness, mental illness, or poo (and everything in between). :)

I’ll miss reading your take on the world, but don’t feel that you owe anyone an explanation or justification for taking some time off. I wish you a wonderful, relaxing, and inspiring break…and we’ll be here if and when you return!

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Annie July 3, 2014 at 12:41 pm
Jeni July 3, 2014 at 12:44 pm

I’m sorry about the isagenix debacle. You know it devastated me as well. You are kind and loving and hilarious and amazing and generous and I have nothing but respect for you. Take a deep breath. Log off. And rest. See you soon sugar tits.

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Sarah Jane @ FitBetty July 3, 2014 at 12:52 pm

Kudos for taking a break! Family and times change, so there is nothing wrong with deciding to change your blog, too. I’m going through similar feelings right now with personal training, teaching group fitness, and having 2 blogs…I feel like I need to decide which ones are more important and downsize. But then I feel guilty when I think of all the other people who are doing everything and being amazing at it. But in the end, it’s YOUR life, no one elses, and YOUR blog, where you have poured you heart. Be encouraged and get the rest and refreshing you deserve <3 I hope to get down to Colorado and meet you for coffee soon :)

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Mom July 3, 2014 at 1:16 pm

Thanks Darling! I WAS wondering whatTL; DR meant. You are miraculous and wonderful all in every way shape and form. Love you to the moon and back!

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Amanda Lee July 3, 2014 at 1:40 pm

I am going to miss you and this blog terribly! It’s one of my favorite things to read, the kind of reads you save for when your kid finally goes to bed and you have a good drink and can just enjoy it. But I completely understand writing from a place of fear–I work in the kind of place where I have to evaluate everything I put out publicly for the multiple ways it could possibly be interpreted…when you try to be as neutral as possible, you lose a lot of what you want to say and your ability to say it. I am looking forward to whatever you come back with, regardless of subject matter!

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Sara July 3, 2014 at 1:43 pm

Good on you for minding yourself!! You will be missed. I started reading your blog not so much for the fitness but for you, what you were thinking and how you were thinking. You are a charming, wise, funny woman. I will miss hearing your personal take on things. I am excited to see what you do next.

Have fun and mind yourself.

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Sue July 3, 2014 at 1:50 pm

So gonna miss your blog, but I totally understand, you being my psychological doppleganger and all ;) I’ll be looking for your articles on Greatist, etc. Take care!

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Katherine July 3, 2014 at 2:23 pm

As, I’ll miss reading your posts. Yours is the first website I check every morning, eagerly anticipating the next post. But I understand needing to take a break and refocus. Enjoy your time off and I’ll still be here when you decide to return.

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Laura July 3, 2014 at 2:32 pm

I love this blog! I look forward to every post, and I will miss you greatly. But, whenever, however you return, I will be waiting to read more. (I remember when you took several months break a few years back, not sure if you would ever return. I couldn’t bear to take you off my RSS feed. When you started posting again? Best. Surprise. Ever.) Be happy, be healthy, be well. I’ll never take you off my RSS feed :)

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Cindy July 3, 2014 at 2:43 pm

Seems like there is a real rash of my favorite bloggers taking a break right now. You will be missed by me most of all.
I think for me anyways the number of negative comments get to me. It scares me and disappoints me that so many people are so … unhappy, angry, stuck? I don’t know what their problem is but it isn’t healthy!

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Karen July 3, 2014 at 2:44 pm

There are few underbellies as dark as the dark underbelly of the internet. Thank you for everything you’ve done, and be proud of yourself for making a decision that’s right for you. I look forward to seeing the next incarnation of your blog. Be well, be safe, be happy — and most of all, never let the turkeys get you down.

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Heather C July 3, 2014 at 2:49 pm

I love reading your blog and find it thought provoking in so many ways, so thank you for that. I read an interview years ago with Oprah where she was asked if women can have it all and her response was yes, but not necessarily all at the same time. Sometimes the focus has to shift to more important things and that is completely understandable. Enjoy your break.

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Lindsey @ The Hungry Hydrologist July 3, 2014 at 3:05 pm

Hi Charlotte- I don’t think I’ve commented before, but I’ve really been enjoying your blog since I found it a few months ago. I’m sorry to hear the meanies are getting you down. I hope your break is helpful and I look forward to reading more when you’re back!

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Shellie July 3, 2014 at 3:21 pm

You are a wise woman, Charlotte. Good for you for following that wisdom.

I have never had the blog experience, but did join a “Mommy bulletin board” for a while. It didn’t take long before the witch hunters took it over and I was reading about how I was jeopardizing the lives of countless children, didn’t deserve to be a mother, didn’t deserve to live, because I recommended a certain brand of car seat. Anonymity and insecurity can sometimes be a toxic combination. It only took a handful of those kinds of experiences before I decided to try to shine my light someplace else.

Best of luck as you find a new way to share your amazing gifts and talents with the world. Whatever you decide, I know you will end up blessing even more people’s lives, more than you could ever imagine.

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Kevin Hipple July 3, 2014 at 3:32 pm

Good luck and God Bless as you move forward into your future.

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heidi July 3, 2014 at 3:38 pm

I believe in you, Charlotte.
Thank you.

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Hannah July 3, 2014 at 3:44 pm

Well put me in the huge camp of those who will extremely miss reading your blog every day. I love hearing your take on things and have opened me up to many views I had never considered before (especially when it opened my eyes to how I looked at myself)! It was tough when you dropped Fridays so I will definitely have to go through an adjustment! Any recommendations on other blogs to check out?! :)

Most importantly – Take the needed break, enjoy the time with your family, and decide what matters most to you! You deserve the best! You have and will continue to be an inspiration to me. If you come back to blogging, I will follow! :)

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Courtney July 3, 2014 at 4:56 pm

I started reading “health and wellness” blogs about 6 years ago as someone that was “recovering” from an ED and for some reason your writing always stood out to me more than the others. But in those years I’ve changed right along with you, and this blog is pretty much the only one I check in on any more; the others, I realized, were just triggering and often promoting an ED in disguise. So while I will be sad not to have regular updates from you, I applaud and support your decision to take time for yourself. I hope you find what you are looking for, and I hope you’ll at least check back in at some point to let us know how you’re faring.

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Amy July 3, 2014 at 6:15 pm

I’m with Courtney – you are one of the last blogs I read, too. I have to have at least one to pee my pants with laughter over as I’m nursing my little one. I applaud your strength and vulnerability at opening yourself up to the vultures of the internet. The comments section is where all the lunatics go to vent, since none of their real friends (if they have any) will actually listen to them. Get your peace and joy back, and I’ll be looking for your humor in the other articles you write!

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Andrea July 3, 2014 at 6:23 pm

Hi Charlotte!

Been with you for five years now and although, I too, like all those above me will miss you dearly I get it.
You’re a brilliant, cleaver, witty, and highly entertaining blogger who happens to know her shit! Never let the naysayers live inside your head girl, you’re too smart for that.
Nevertheless, take your time and return when you’re ready. For your loyal fans await you :) xoxo

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Matt July 3, 2014 at 6:29 pm

Luv ya Charlotte.

Sometimes in order for change to go in the right direction we need to just stop and rest and let the world take what we put into it and then come back and see what has happened with the gift we’ve given it.

The invitation to join me for some playground workouts is always open. Just hit me up at my site and I’ll make it happen. Just for the fun of it.

Oh yea, and it takes a real jerk to piss on someone’s sandcastle which is what every hater on the internet does.

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Ronda July 3, 2014 at 6:32 pm

I felt myself nodding in agreement the whole time I was reading this post, as I have done with almost every post you write! I swear we are on the exact same path in life! I only subscribe to a handful of blogs at a time and yours has been one of the few I’ve always loved. You are a gifted, funny writer and I plan on hanging around to see what you do next (I don’t always wanna READ about health and fitness either;)). Take your time and enjoy your family – they are all that matter anyway! <3

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Matt July 3, 2014 at 6:37 pm

Oh yea I almost forgot, I did a very similar thing a number of years back with my old site the fit rebel.com. The nay-sayers were wearing my nerves raw, my content and message felt stale and I needed a break.

I tore down everything I had, all the youtube vids, podcasts everything. I felt free but also very depressed for a while because while it was a constant stressor It was also my creative outlet.

After a bit I slowly got back into blogging with the site I have now. New videos, podcasts and a whole new message that’s far better than before. The break was very hard but it was the best thing for me because it allowed me to refocus on what I really wanted and to create something I’m much more proud of. Plus people love it.

I’ve been writing my book for a while now but if you don’t mind I would love to shoot you a copy of the rough draft. After everything you’ve done for me it’s the least I can do for you.

Luv ya as always and best of luck Charlotte.

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Jody - Fit at 56 July 3, 2014 at 6:43 pm

I love you Charlotte – not only for your courage to write what you do BUT to take time away when you need to!!! I totally get what you are saying & I am not anything close to you in writing or the rest!

I feel my voice has turned into what others want to hear & read so I am not sure when I get my blog back up & running exactly how often or even what I will write about because I am tired too!

HUGE HUGS!!!!!!!!!!

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Sarah July 3, 2014 at 6:57 pm

Ahhh, while I fully want you to do what’s best for you, I do hope you come back in some form soon! Any fitnessy blogs you’d recommend to fill the void until then?

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caro July 3, 2014 at 7:50 pm

We love you, too.
Mean people suck.
Be safe. Be happy.

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Wendy T. July 3, 2014 at 8:26 pm

Love you (but not in a creepy-stalkerish way), love your blog. Take all the time you need to figure things out and I’ll be waiting when you come back. ((Hugs))

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Terri July 3, 2014 at 8:35 pm

I’ve been busy lately and not on the net much so I seem to have missed a lot ! I’m sorry people are using the anonymity of the internet to deal with their own issues by projecting them onto you. When someone is being a pratt – it’s not about you, it’s about them.

Thank you for sharing your journey so openly, honestly, amusingly and inspiringly. Many times I’ve opened your blog and read just what I needed to. I don’t think I can say Thank You enough.

I’ve given up all media (TV, News Websites, gossip pages, magazines etc) for about a year. I feel so much better for it. Maybe a detox of the “negative media” kind will help too ?

Enjoy your hiatus and do what’s best for you and your family and take care of yourself.

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Liz July 3, 2014 at 9:03 pm

From one dr pepper lip smackers wearer to another – I get it. But I’ll miss you and your writings. I refer to you as “my Mormon friend from apple valley” when I quote you to my husband. Which is often. My boys are young men now and you’re right – takes sooo much more emotional energy than the baby stage. Take care!

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Katie July 3, 2014 at 9:04 pm

Charlotte – your words have helped me, and others I am sure, more times than you will ever know. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve read a post and thought “did I write that!?” Blogs and bloggers and WRITERS need to honor themselves. If that means time off or closing shop or changing topics, that is YOUR perogative.

I haven’t been commenting lately (on any blogs, not just yours), but know I have always and will continue to read. Take your time, and take care of yourself, first and foremost.

You’ll be in my reader. And I’ll continue to stalk you in all those other places. I don’t foresee a Charlotte-less future for me.

(That last paragraph sounds way creepy, but I think you understand.)

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Laura P. July 3, 2014 at 9:17 pm

Love you so much Charlotte. Thank you for everything. You have been an important part of my life. Really!!! I’m not just saying that because it sounds good…but I mean it from the bottom of my heart.

To those naysayers….just remember that they are probably sad and unhappy. But you are a breath of fresh air. A drink of clean, cool water. A cool breeze on a hot day. You are beautiful inside and out. I am never gonna forget your excellent personality. You have a wonderful talent.

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Britt July 3, 2014 at 9:21 pm

Hi Charlotte,

Although I rarely ever comment, I have been diligently following your blog for the past five years. This is a wonderful family and community of followers! What has kept me coming back each day has nothing to do with fitness, health, and/or the latest fads (although this was my initial interest), rather it is you – your courage to be totally authentic and totally raw…two qualities that are so rare these days. (And you’re hilarious!) The fact that you have been willing to share this authenticity, let alone with so many other people, is a gift.

With much gratitude and sincerity – thank you. Enjoy your rest and take care of you.

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Joemama July 3, 2014 at 9:21 pm

Go, Charlotte. Be free. I’ll miss you. I will. A lot. But I, and I think all of us, understand. Crossroads, paths less chosen and all that. I feel privileged to have been along for the ride. And I’m proud of you, getting yourself all together like you did after a huge, huge upheaval. I’m also proud of you for saying “I need other things right now. And that’s OK.” Good on you. You are growing ever wiser and more mature. I’m glad you’ve balanced things as far as you have and hope that balance becomes even more complete.
Enjoy your kiddos. Enjoy your life. Go play.

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Megz July 3, 2014 at 10:39 pm

Hi Charlotte,

I’m really sorry to hear that there won’t be posts for awhile (though I understand your reasons). I find your posts balanced, rational and informative (very much appreciated in the blogosphere where research is not always well interpreted or highly regarded) and I will definitely miss your posts

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Kendra July 3, 2014 at 11:01 pm

First of all, I have to say that you are my very favorite blogger, and I will continue to read what you write, regardless of the subject matter. You are undeniably one of the most talented writers in the blogging world, and I am continually impressed by the quality and quantity of content you are able to push out – you definitely deserve a break! Thank you SO MUCH for taking your blog this far; your transparency is refreshing, and your insights are thought-provoking and eye-opening. I wish you all the best in whatever direction you choose to go! Also, I am so, so sorry that you have had to deal with negative feedback – I don’t know why people are so hateful, or why they take pleasure in making others miserable. I am sure that you have MANY more supporters than detractors, but unfortunately those of us who love you don’t often say so enough, and for that I am sorry.

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Gydle (aka Mary) July 3, 2014 at 11:05 pm

I love your blog – you have a unique voice and I relate very personally to everything you’ve gone through and write about. But I totally understand; as a blogger I hit the same place last year at some point. It’s your blog and you can take it exactly where you want to, you can pick it up and leave it whenever you want to. I for one will keep it bookmarked and come back periodically to see what you’re up to. As for the trolls – they’re not worth your tears. It’s never worth writing from a place of fear because of people like that. Ignore them and they go away. And lastly – I agree with you that things seem more negative these days body-image/diet/fitness wise. I don’t really understand why everyone seems so obsessed but at the same time unhealthy. What matters most are our people, our families and the love we send around. Who gives a shit what pants size or diet we’re on? Love you, girl. Have fun. :)

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Fan guy July 3, 2014 at 11:08 pm

Thanks for all the great posts and sharing your life.
Hope to see more when you are ready.

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Lauren Matheson July 4, 2014 at 12:50 am

I hate working out, but I like what you write. And I let my blog go dark because I felt like I had nothing to contribute to the conversation, so I absolutely support your decision to back up as needed, though I will miss you – after a high time of zillions of blogs emailing me daily I’m down to maybe 4 or 5. And you know what? Most of them (like steadymom) have gone sporadic too. Maybe the phase is just over for all of us. Blessings to you :-)

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Jo July 4, 2014 at 5:07 am

I found you through health and fitness originally but I’ve stuck around reading because whatever you write about is always pure gold. I’d noticed a move away from fitness, which actually makes me excited because I want to read your take on everything and anything else in life. Whatever comes out of this break/change, I know you’ll make sure it’s right for you and your family and I wish you all the best for yourself, wherever you may turn next.

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Holly July 4, 2014 at 6:00 am

Thank you for this blog Charlotte, so many times I have read your posts and wondered how you knew how I felt inside. Your posts have often hit home for me and made me address unresolved issues I truthfully didn’t realize I had until reading your post–in a good way. You know when the light bulb goes off and you say, OOHHH, THAT’S why I do that. Your posts have often reduced me to tears–and I have admired your vulnerability and openness on subjects that are too hurtful for most people to talk about. You have a truly beautiful way of looking at life, and I will miss hearing that voice in the wasteland of snarky criticism that seems to surround us these days.

PS You wrote about making self-care non-negotiable the other day, I would say this is definitely an enormous step in that direction.

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Janet UK July 4, 2014 at 6:28 am

I’ll miss your blog, take care x

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Naomi/Dragonmamma July 4, 2014 at 7:11 am

First of all, I want you to know that yours is the only blog I have followed for such a long period of time. (Not quite sure how many years now!) It amazes me that your writing is NOT stale, particularly since you write on an almost-daily basis. My blog didn’t even last half a year, and I was not writing daily. I lazily discovered that it’s much less effort to just come over here and add a comment to your blog!

Obviously, I hope you’ll keep writing somewhere. The overly-sensitive, negative comments are a real drag; maybe you need to switch to a “friends only” format like FB. The down-side is that you don’t get new readers, but you’ve already got plenty of current readers, and maybe new folks could be added by invite only.

Sounds like The Great Fitness Experiment has run its course, so it could just be turned into The Great Life Experiment.

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Laura July 4, 2014 at 7:34 am

I will really miss reading your blog, but I’m happy for you to be doing what is best for you and your family. Best of luck to you!!

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Amanda O July 4, 2014 at 10:10 am

Loooove your blog, book and you, thank you for being so honest, open, thoughtful and hilarious. It’s wonderful you’ve recognized what you need to do for now and I look forward to reading whatever you decide to share in the future. Enjoy your time with those precious children and we’ll be here if you decide to come back!

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crabby mcslacker July 4, 2014 at 11:59 am

Crap, somehow I missed this post yesterday, sorry for the belated response.

I TOTALLY understand why you need a break; I have never understood how you were able to produce so much amazing writing so many different places!

Yet I am going to miss your blog like crazy. I will say “out loud” in a public forum that you are my VERY FAVORITE fitness blogger, and this is coming from someone who has perused probably thousands of them.

I would feel sadder but for the fact that I think you have your priorities in the right place, and that this break will be great for you.

(But, sniff, sniff… I am sad for all of us who love you and like our Charlotte 100% natural and unrefined.)

And we’re totally gonna be here when you come back!

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Geosomin July 4, 2014 at 6:06 pm

I will miss your posts, but ya gotta do what feels right for you :)
Life is wonderful – get on out there and enjoy it with your amazing family!

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Cort the Sport July 4, 2014 at 8:40 pm

I TOTALLY get it. I just have the two kids, but every year is busier and busier (and they are low maintenance, and just two…) I am blogging still, but less. I am generally less active on social media and blogs because I spend so much time in front of the computer for work. It gets toxic after a while. Do what is right for your life situation at the time. Nothing needs to be forever, change is good, change can be freeing. :-)

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Julia July 5, 2014 at 12:30 am

I have lurked and thoroughly enjoyed your vulnerability, humor, and insights for the last five years or so. Much love to you and your family– they are beyond blesses to have your dedication. Can’t wait to read more of whatever you might like to share sometime in the future!

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Diana July 5, 2014 at 1:23 am

I will really miss you. That said, you deserve a time off.
I really loved this post, even though it was a bit of a disillusionment. I always kind of thought – if I tried it all like you’ve done, I’d find the one magic thing that would make me thin. Even though I really knew it was unlikely.
I’ve learned so much from your blog. Even things you might not expect. I am a translator and a grammar Nazi (in my native tongue, i.e., Latvian – I don’t for a moment imagine that I *know* English well enough to correct other people’s mistakes). But it’s a real pleasure reading the writings of people who care about their language. There have been times when I’ve stumbled across a phrase or an idiom in your posts and have thought to myself :”so that’s the preposition used in this phrase” or “that’s how a native speaker would put it”. Not to mention your superb sense of humor – it’s so not easy being funny without offending anyone.
You’re incredibly beautiful. When you pose for pictures in those fantastic and incredibly tasteful dresses, I cannot fathom why you would need to strive for a perfect body when you’ve got it. In the picture of this post you look so endearingly sweet and vulnerable that it blows my mind how anyone could write hate mail to you.
Have a rest, girl, and come back when you feel like it. I’m sure you’ll return strong. Like a girl!
Lots of love, Diana.

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Sigi July 5, 2014 at 5:26 am

Oh Charlotte, I will miss you! But I’m glad you are taking the best care of yourself with this decision. Will follow your other writings, and be back with you if and when you decide to blog again. In the meantime, lots and lots of love and hugs from the other side of the world, gorgeous gal. xoxoxo

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Tamara July 5, 2014 at 3:01 pm

Do what’s right for you and yours! I’ll read if/when you post. I love you. ‘Nuff said. xo

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Jill July 5, 2014 at 10:11 pm

I’ll keep reading if and when you decide to come back. I have enjoyed your blog for a few years. Enjoy your break!

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Jenea Mason July 6, 2014 at 11:11 am

I actually just found your blog and I’ve been going through some of your old posts. I’m fascinated by the things you write and I can relate to many of them. I don’t know how long you’ll be gone but I’ll be waiting for when you decide to come back. I can’t wait to keep reading!

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Cynthia July 6, 2014 at 1:18 pm

Dear sweet friend to all of us,
We will miss your candor! We respect you, we love you! You’ve taught me so much about this crazy world of dieting and exercise. You helped me see my eating disorder, and I’ve always felt I had a sister-friend who gets me. Take care of yourself. You’ve taken care of those who love you and have read your blog happily, with no evil thought about anything, mostly laughter.

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lc143 July 6, 2014 at 10:44 pm

Im very new,(stumbled upon you today 7/6/14, while researching constipation) and I’m sad to see such a talented, intelligent, (and hilarious) blogger step down. I do truly hope you will find what you are looking for and return with zest, because for every one fan that leaves five more will stumble like I have and be excited for more. Fortunately for me, you have left a ton of post to browse in the meantime. Either way, whether you return or choose a different path, please do take care of yourself and thank you for all the time, effort and “one more minute’s” that you have given to make this blog possible.

Sincerely,

LC143

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lc143 July 6, 2014 at 10:45 pm

Im very new,(stumbled upon you today 7/6/14, while researching constipation) and I’m sad to see such a talented, intelligent, (and hilarious) blogger step down. I do truly hope you will find what you are looking for and return with zest, because for every one fan that leaves five more will stumble like I have and be excited for more. Fortunately for me, you have left a ton of post to browse in the meantime. Either way, whether you return or choose a different path, please do take care of yourself and thank you for all the time, effort and “one more minute’s” that you have given to make this blog possible.

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JavaChick July 7, 2014 at 8:39 am

Aw, sorry to hear that Charlotte! I’ve been on vacation for the past week and a half, not online much, so missed the “Isagenix debacle.” Some people seem to think they have a right to be mean, and I think that is a shame. I’d like to tell you to ignore those people, but I know it is easier said that done!

Understand needing a break though – you’ve got a lot going on! A break sounds like a good idea. Enjoy extra time with your family! I will be here if/when you return. :)

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Meg July 7, 2014 at 10:23 am

I love your writing so much! It doesn’t matter what you write about…it is always so fun to read :).
I am so thankful that you described how this moment I am in (mom of 4 yo, 2 yo, and newborn) will change. Of course I know they will grow up, but I am deeply entrenched in my gym and gym buddies because right now that seems like my lifeline. I guess I am about where you were when you started this blog. Hearing you say how different (in a positive way) life is now, put a big smile on my face all weekend. I have been thinking about that statement for days. Thank you!!! I love reading.

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Grace July 7, 2014 at 12:08 pm

I have often wondered how in the world you do all that you do! Of course you need a break. Just know that you touch the lives of a lot of people with your insightful blog and we will miss you. Take all the time you need and hopefully we will be hearing from again.

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Joshua July 7, 2014 at 2:31 pm

I’ve been following and enjoying your blog for about a year and a half now. I had noticed that the topics were skewing father from the health/fitness arena, and it just seemed like a natural progression based on what you told us about your life. I had been thinking that at some point this blog would undergo a re-invention. You’re a fine writer and seem like a wonderful person. I’ll continue to watch this blog and see what direction it takes. Best of luck, Charlotte!

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Abby July 7, 2014 at 10:03 pm

Charlotte! I’m currently traveling in Australia so just saw this but I had to respond. Just wanted to send lots of love your way. I’m not going anywhere, no matter what this blog becomes. I find myself going back to your archives all the freaking time. Like, I just had a chemical pregnancy and your blogs on pregnancy lost helped me more than anything else out there. But I understand. I recently tried on a dress I wore more than 10 years ago (pre-anorexia, pre-recovery, pre-exercising) and it fit the same. That was also a what the hell moment. So much respect for doing what you need. I really do hope you’ll keep writing. I’ll miss you!

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AmyG July 8, 2014 at 9:15 am

I’ve been reading your blog for most of the years you’ve written it. I feel you’re my best friend that I never met. I think at this point I’d read your grocery list if you posted it here so I’ll be waiting anxiously to see what direction you go. You’ve made me laugh, you’ve made me cry and you’ve helped make me more accepting of my own self. Thank you for all my first-of-the-morning reads and good luck in the future!

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Val July 8, 2014 at 11:44 am

Charlotte, you are such a thoughtful, caring person with such a big heart and it comes across in all your posts. Anyone who claims to be offended by your posts has got to be trolling. All your genuine readers love you and will miss you while you take your well-deserved break from the blog. And I’m sure we’ll all be with you through the next incarnation of your blog as well. You do you, girl!

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Véronique July 8, 2014 at 12:44 pm

This post made me smile. I’ve always enjoyed reading you and I am happy that you are still chasing your muse, that you are focuses on creating things that have meaning for you, not just “sticking with what works, playing it safe” when it comes to your actual voice (not your other work gigs). It’s your honesty that kept me reading and I look forward to reading you again if or when you return. feel free to shoot me an email when you do. Enjoy playing games with your kids, it sounds fun!!

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Julie July 8, 2014 at 2:20 pm

Please come back, when you feel ready. Your “What I Mean When I Say I Have Five Children” post is one of the most beautiful things I have ever read.

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Diane July 8, 2014 at 2:44 pm

Charlotte,
One of my favorite quotes is, “And just when the caterpillar thought it was over, she turned into a beautiful butterfly.” This is you…
Thank you for all your shared humor and wisdom.
Now, go fly girl.
YOU ROCK

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Colleen July 8, 2014 at 3:39 pm

Charlotte;
You didn’t lose me through your first break, and you won’t lose me through this one. I’ll look forward to whatever writing you put out there, in whatever format suits your needs. You go do you, don’t worry about us!

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sara-hare July 8, 2014 at 4:20 pm

Aw, take care of yourself, Charlotte. Your readers will definitely miss you. Enjoy your lovely family, and be happy. I do hope that eventually you come back and, as someone said, we get to read “The Great Life Experiment.” Sounds like a good title to me! :)

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Heather July 9, 2014 at 7:25 am

Just wanted to let you know that I have thoroughly enjoyed your blog. I wish you only the best in whatever you decide to do with the blog in the future. No matter what you write about I will still be an avid reader of your work. Mean people suck (pardon my French)! Take care of yourself!

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Sarah July 10, 2014 at 4:54 am

I first started reading your blog because you taught me some great things about fitness. But along the way, I started to learn more about LIFE and LOVE. Charlotte, I really like YOU!! Reading your blog turned into learning so much more than I thought. I hope you know that you really made a difference in some people’s lives…mine for sure. Plus, I really enjoy discussing topics with others (Hello, Darwin!). Please check in once in a while, Charlotte…you are truly a light in the world.
Much love.

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Darwin July 10, 2014 at 6:25 pm

I REALLY enjoy discussing topics with others too! (Hello, Sarah!)

I realized right away (close your ears Charlotte) that the other downside would be losing the connection to this wonderful Charlotte blog community!

Good thing I followed a…prompting? To check back!

Charlotte’s personality and perkiness and talent brought a lot of wonderful people here, and I am so very glad that I got to spend time interacting with many of them! (Helloo again Sarah!)

I sense I will check back frequently.

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Carole July 16, 2014 at 12:21 pm

Charlotte, your blog is the only one I read regularly and I feel like you are a friend. I will miss it terribly but am happy for you to be figuring out what works for you. I do hope that you come back to blogging, because you are such a gifted writer with your ability to be uproariously funny while making me cry all at the same time. May God continue to bless you and your family, whatever you end up doing.

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