Pride

menopauseexpress.com - Pride

 

Pride is a quiet being that lurks inside of all of us. It sneaks out sometimes, in the form of judgment, and we don’t even notice it. It stings. It makes us feel ashamed; make us hide things. It can bring us down and make us cry. We can even hate ourselves because of our own pride and mixed emotions we don’t understand. Continue reading “Pride”

I Promised You Pictures…

… and pictures you will get. In fact, this post will mainly consist of pictures, because the emotions from Saturday’s events are beyond any words I can fill on paper or type in any blog. Continue reading “I Promised You Pictures…”

Life Goes On

(more thoughts from my previous post)

Pooh passed away in the middle of the night. He’s no longer in pain, and his family can go through a grieving process that will end. They no longer have to cope with the pain of watching a family member suffer.

The sun still rose today. I was up before sunrise, as usual, in my garage making incense. Mr. Magick Man got up, as he always does, and headed off to work.

The death of one person, just as birth, is a part of life. If it were a rock being tossed in the pond of our world, it wouldn’t really make a ripple. But the water where the rock lands – right where it lands – is moved and disturbed. It doesn’t just fall back into place immediately. That water represents those immediately affected by the one person’s death; their loved ones.

Why do good people have to suffer in such a manner when there are others in this world that perform truly horrible acts and don’t have to suffer in kind? We may never know. The answer to this question may come down to your spiritual beliefs. It may be a lesson you have to learn in this life before passing to the next. It may be we do not understand God’s plan. Or it may be there is no higher power; it’s just a disease and it’s a roll of the dice.

I have friends who walk each path. Personally, I believe there is a higher power. I’ll never understand the why’s, but I try to find some kind of growth from life’s experiences – no matter where I am in that pond.

Pond Of Life

A Crisis of Faith

My first post in how long? It was supposed to be about how busy I’ve been. I was going to write about my new business, gearing up for an upcoming festival, and success. These things are not at the forefront of my mind right now. What brings me out of the shadows and back to my blog is a need to write.

…2am and I’m still awake writing this song
If I get it all down on paper it’s no longer inside of me
Threatening the life it belongs to…

“Breathe” – Anna Nalick, 2006

Today I write about a good friend of my husband’s. He’s as big as a bear, has the demeanor of a teddy, so I’ll call him Pooh, because you all know I never use anyone’s real names here.

Pooh is losing his battle with cancer. Over the past five years I’ve had the honor of knowing this man and his wife, and he’s a very good person.  My husband has known him far longer.

Pooh surprised the doctors and lived beyond their expectations. He is a stubborn old man and we wouldn’t have it any other way. But in the past month he’s started going downhill fast. This past weekend was hard, and now he’s really not in good shape. When he’s coherent he seems like himself but most of the time he’s out of it. I’ll be surprised if he makes it another week.

I’ve seen Pooh cope with the anger and frustration of not being able to do what he used to do. To have the mental capacity one has but lose one’s physical capacity and know one is just slowly withering away, with no control over the situation, is not easy. I just saw Pooh on occasion; I can only imagine what his wife saw on a daily basis and how hard this has been on her.

I see Mr. Magick Man coping with his emotions. He’s one who tucks things away. I ask how he’s doing and he’s honest – he says, “not good.” But he’s not breaking down like I would in this situation. He’s got the emotions neatly packed in a box somewhere so he can function throughout his day. Meanwhile I sit here being so close to him emotionally I can feel it. And I weep.

I wonder if it’s just this, or if there are old issues being triggered, and I already know the answer. Old issues I neatly tuck away in my own box so I can go on seem to never come out of that box. If I don’t look at them they don’t exist. They just reach up and bite me in the ass at times like this.

A good friend of mine lost his own battle with cancer years ago, when I worked at The Empire. His diagnosis was a bit worse than Pooh’s. Doctor’s gave him a very grim prognosis from the beginning – about a year, tops. He lived 3-4 years. Attitude is a lot of it, from what I hear. When he passed away, I wondered then, “Why do such good people have to die in such a painful way?” I never came to terms with that concept. I never got my answer.

People die every day and it isn’t for us to make judgment on “good” or “bad”. But when you see the news headlines or hear about these sick people in the world who do terrible things, from rapists to child molesters to terrorists, one has to wonder… Why do they have it so easy? Why is it these things happen to good people instead?

As I was in the garage this morning making incense, I fussed to the heavens above about this… again. I still don’t have an answer. I just have a headache.

‘Cause you can’t jump the track, we’re like cars on a cable
And life’s like an hourglass, glued to the table
No one can find the rewind button now.
So cradle your head in your hands
And breathe… just breathe,
Oh breathe, just breathe

“Breathe” – Anna Nalick, 2006

 

2013 Design Charrette

This morning I was a tightly wound spring, so what do I do? I go to Starbucks to get my quad-venti-caramel-non-fat-latte (that’s a 4 ounces of espresso in a 20 ounce cup, for those who aren’t familiar). Now, Starbucks has these re-useable cups, but they only come in a “grande” size (16 ounce). So instead of getting my usual venti, I grab my two re-useable cups and get two grande’s.

The caffeine helps keep me on an even keel.

Goddess Caffeina

 

I taste the sweet nectar of the Goddess Caffeina and I can feel her soothing arms around me. I begin to unwind as I finish my drive to the campus.

I get onsite and claim my spot at one of the Mac’s. I sign in, check my email, and I see my client will be there in about an hour. I have some time to put some final touches on page one and get started on page two before she gets here!

I quickly find out how fast an hour can fly by.

Regardless, my client is more than pleased with the ideas I’ve got and work I’ve done. We talk about a couple of tweaks here and there. I get her input on a couple of ideas and show her what I’m planning for the rest of page two. She’s eager to see the final product!

Everything went amazingly smooth! When I was finished with that project I was able to help another student design a logo.

My InDesign instructor referred to me as his “star student” today then handed me another project that had to be done in under 2 hours (from concept to final). I did it.

This doesn’t even touch the surface of everything that went on today. There were so many students working together; giving feedback to each other… it was just amazing!

I left campus with such a feeling of excitement and accomplishment! I know I started this day out as a nervous wreck, but I liken it to a bit of stage fright. Once I got into the wings and stepped out onstage, that was the best show, ever!

Image from RadioTimes with Marty Moss-Coane
Image from RadioTimes with Marty Moss-Coane

Traditions and the New Year

Wow, 2013! A new day, a new year!

Last night was spent with great friends, and much fun was had. We had a good celebration, and at midnight we threw 2012 out the door. Oh, let me explain this tradition.

Each year a friend of mine makes an effigy of the year that’s going out. I honestly can’t remember when we started this tradition, but I think we’ve been doing it for about 5 years now. For example, When we rang in 2008, we threw an effigy of 2007 out the front door. If the year was particularly bad for some people, they took great joy in running outside and stomping the effigy into tiny bits. Regardless, it’s the symbolism of leaving things behind that I enjoy and going on with “the new”.

This year, M did an amazing job with the effigy. He wanted to keep it. He said, “Rather than throw it out the door, why don’t we just place it by the door so everyone can look at it?”

Our Effigy of 2012
Our Effigy of 2012

Being the creative type, I can understand why he wanted to keep this beautiful work of art. However, we have meaning and symbolism behind this tradition. Throwing the effigy out the door is so much more than just a physical action.

I told him if he wanted to keep it he’d have to go outside and catch it. 😉

Midnight struck. We all had a toast of champagne. People kissed their sweethearts. Then the moment occurred. We all gathered ’round to see 2012 tossed out the door. No one really cared to stomp up and down on this one. Really, I don’t think 2012 was a particularly bad year for this crowd. Or, perhaps bringing a little beauty brightened their spirits if it had been a bad year. M dashed outside in the rain and caught the effigy as it was tossed (and I can’t throw for schluken after I’ve been drinking, so that was amazing!). He placed it safely on the porch, looking lonely and forlorn in the window:

Don't let the door hit ya' on the way out!
Don’t let the door hit ya’ on the way out!

And now, as I post, the smell of black eyed peas wafts from my kitchen. I need to start on the cornbread soon. My, how I love traditions. Happy New Year, everyone!

Communication in our Digital World

I made it twelve days on my Facebook/G+ blackout. I would have made it longer, but I do see notifications pop-up on my phone. I did well ignoring status updates. What got me was the timing of an update from my best friend.

It’s a bit like getting a phone call from someone in the middle of the night – you know someone is either badly hurt or dying. Lyl is not a morning person. If she makes a status update at the crack of dawn, something is wrong. Being there for my best friend is more important than completely abstaining from social media. I logged into FB, read her post, and it confirmed what I’d already thought was going on. But rather than comment, I called her.

What You Say and How You Say It

When you call someone who’s just gone through a traumatic event, or who’s in an emotional crisis, sometimes the words just seem so empty. When you deliver these words live, whether on the phone or in person, it seems quite awkward. You never know if you are saying the right thing or if you’re really offering any comfort to the person. Online, though, we can stop and think about what we say. We can create a first draft, a second draft…when we have our final and hit send we’re hopefully more confident our words have been of some use.  Sherry Turkle covers this quite nicely in her TED talk, Alone Together“.

Adjusting the Dial Tone

Different people have different methods for dealing with that type of stress. For example, an extrovert would need “people time” in order to recharge and get out of the downward spiral. However, an introvert just needs “alone time”. This is where I can see an upside of FB and G+: It allows a nice balance for the two. People can communicate with each other and at the same time choose how much interaction they want on a daily basis.

Definitions we should all know

What Did I Change?

I changed my awareness. I’ve “officially” been back since November 17, but I don’t check Facebook or G+ every day. I don’t think about them as a primary form of communication anymore. I suppose you could say I’m adjusting my own dial tone, and trying to bring a balance of communication into my life.