Monday, July 6, 2015

Random Thoughts from an 11 Day Driving Vacation to the Great Southwest

(And it's only Day 6 people...)

*It is very, very strange not to sweat when it's 100 degrees outside and you are walking in the heat with the sun glaring down.  As my husband says about living in South Louisiana, he sweats when he just thinks about walking outside when it's summer.  We are moist ALL the time.  Not just our bodies but also the frequent afternoon rain showers.

*My husband is a doer - go go go. There is a reason he made it through medical school and five years of a surgical residency which is one of the most demanding specialties.  He always likes to be going and doing all the time.   Yet his wife and his two tween daughters do not want to go to EVERY stop in the 28 mile driving tour of the Petrified Forest/Painted Desert in 100 degree temperatures at 2:00pm when we haven't had lunch and I'm worried about the fact that I'm not sweating and we are running out of water.  And it's dry, dry, dry. Our desire to see that last petrified log dissipated an hour and a half ago. That's a boundary for me and I have to get over disappointing him.  It's hard to disappoint a loved one.

*We have a tween now.  This summer she has done something this early rising family has never seen the likes of.  She sleeps until 10am or later!  I had heard about this, but don't really remember doing it myself and yet I know it's normal.  Making her wake up at 5:30am to hike into the Grand Canyon, does not go over well even when she knew it was going to happen.  I expected complaining for at least an hour after she woke up.  My husband did not.  Which takes me to my next point...

*Vacations do not go smoothly all the time.  There are ugly moments or hours.  This is to be expected.  Vacations were not the norm when I was younger as my parents were not traveling people.  So, I had this idealized concept of vacations. They were wonderful and beautiful and fantastical all the time.


*My skin is very dry now.  My hands are scaly white.  I need to put more lotion on than I normally do which is excessive.

*I'm not a backpack girl.  I tried to start using a hiking one and I failed.  The first casualty was my reading sunglasses.  Too many compartments…  I am a purse girl.

*My family now knows just how obsessed I am with keeping our phones, iPad,  and laptops charged.  I admit I do not like my devices to run low at all.  Forty nine percent power is scary.  Below thirty is just plan dangerous.  I have experienced below that.  That is playing with FIRE!  I don't now why this is.  I think it goes back to being in hurricanes and tropical storms and losing power.  It is who I am.

*Letting go of wearing makeup and "fixing" my hair is so utterly freeing.

*The State of Arizona does not participate in Daylight Savings Time.  Confused, much? Our bodies and devices were.  Some nights we were out cold by 8:30 pm.

*I learned a lot about the symbols for cell coverage on my phone.  E is not good.  It hangs up on the person you are talking to.

*We do not have unlimited data on our phones and iPads.  We ran out of data at least four times with 52 notifications that we were doing so on each of the devices it is used on and we would be paying another $15 for a GB of data and we burned through that.

*I am now back home.  Vacations are wonderful with the good, bad and ugly of it all.  We saw some spectacular sights and now, I am happy to be home once again.  And to say the least, Riley is happy to be back home.  She never, ever wanted to leave. She smiled once or twice while we were gone, but mostly to take pictures.


This Is Life

This is my Living Room.  All of Riley's bedroom furniture has been moved in there to accommodate painting her room.  It is a mess. The Living Room is my pretty room.  It is normally not a mess.  The furniture is not used as much and is clean, free of pet hair for the most part and the one room, I can walk through and think, ah, I don't have anything I have to do in here to clean.
Riley has been waiting very patiently for us to start painting.  We picked the color months ago.  So those test spots have been there for months.  George told her weeks ago, that the Fourth of July would be THE weekend.

So she and George went to a paint store and got the paint.  Moved everything out, taped, and covered the carpet.  Opened the paint can, stirred and it's the wrong color. And this happened on July 4th when the store was closed and it was also closed on the next day Sunday.  So although all engines were full steam ahead, now the process is shut down and we sit and wait.
And my pretty room will stay a mess until this is completed.
I walked the room the room and thought isn't this what life is all about.  
There is an obstacle whether it be a person, a situation or as I have come to learn, my own thought processes that stand in my way and they are not going anywhere until I learn to accept them for who or what they are.  The situation is not going to change.

The big monstrosity will stay there until I accept it.  I have learned to walk away from certain people and situations and learn to live with some others through acceptance and it's a process. The very first step is awareness.  And then there's anger, frustration, fear, sadness, etc.  This is not the way I wanted it to be AT ALL.   Yet slowly over time with attention and loving attention, the way you think about the monster will change. Living with what is uncomfortable will not be as uncomfortable as it used to be.  The pain will reside and acceptance seeps in.

We are bringing the paint back to get it corrected today.  And we will start the process over.


Thursday, June 11, 2015

Deep Stuff That You May or May Not Be Interested In, But Rocks My World

"If you respect your own emotions and regard them with affection and a lack of judgment, and if you persist in allowing yourself to feel those emotions and to let them move ever deeper, you shall find that the gift begins to bear fruit as you feel yourself becoming more spacious within, more responsive to the deeper emotions. You will find that you are an alchemist turning disharmony into harmony, fear into love, darkness into light. It is a natural process and it begins with the disharmony, with the darkness. Such are the ways of spirit.
And that is why we say that things are perfect at all times, although they may be uncomfortable. Do not cringe away from your suffering, but rather cradle yourself as you endure through the natural process of the alchemy of the transforming energy, of the love in your open heart."

From "The Law of One" Books.
Never heard of them but this was a quote I saw and 

From someone who is learning to process every feeling that comes my way - this is so absolutely true.  From fear to love.  From the unbearableness and freaking uncomfortableness of it all to open heart. From dark to light. 


Monday, June 8, 2015

It seems, it's time…and what is cool anyway?

I have been wearing readers for a couple of years now. And the necessity of them has increased over those years.  Everything is blurry now, even my food. (sad face) I had to make the move to sunglasses with readers as well. And how many times do I try to see my iPhone while outside?  All the freakin' time!!   I guess if I gave up Facebook that would help.  But I still need to see to take picture and read texts, and email and see maps.  Everything on that tiny little phone screen.  I cannot zoom in any larger and see only three words per screen.

Going from indoors to outdoors all the time especially when traveling which we just did, I had to switch back and forth between my eyeglasses ($$$$) and my sunglasses ($$).  It's a constant joy to keep up with both pairs.   Sometimes I have the sunglasses in my hair with the glasses on my eyes.  Most times I end up with the eyeglasses stuck in the top of my shirt.  This is very dangerous activity.  I lost my first pair of prescription readers doing so but thankfully I had owned them for a few years and they were pretty scratched up at the time or at least that's what I told myself.

But where do I put them??

And then it hit me. It's time.

It's disturbing but I don't think I care anymore about my image…

I may have to get…

A chain.

This is what I picture from back in the day.  An older lady with grey hair and an eye glass chain? cord? I don't even know what you call it.  And it looks like she has a bun.  I wear my hair twisted on top of my head too… {look of cringe}

But these days - this is what the ad looks like.

I'm going to start a trend.

If you act like it's cool.  It will be.

And what is cool anyway?  My forties have been reinventing what cool is anyway.  Cool is what makes me happy.  Cool is what puts me at peace.

Because the forties are about not worrying what other people think.

Though some things are so deeply ingrained.  In my own thought processes, trying not to factor in other people, buying a cord for my glasses is ancient.  Really, really ancient.

But if my stomach is not turning over in nervousness at the things I do, there is no growth.  I'm just so tired of keeping up with the glasses.  And I don't want to lose any more glasses.

It's time.


And then there's this little nugget.

Monday, June 1, 2015

Why Does Crying Get Such A Bad Rap?

I had a big ugly cry yesterday morning, actually several of them, and it is uncomfortable for me to let that much emotion flow through. It's getting easier as I am learning to not stuff my emotions. The catalyst was bringing Mallory, my beloved nine year old muse, to the chartered bus to ride 7 hours away to her first overnight camp for 6 nights. I have never doubted she will have a blast when she decided she wanted to go and I put it out my mind.  BUT IT CAME BACK.

I was a little taken aback when the uncomfortableness popped up two days before we were to bring her to catch the bus on Sunday morning.  The night before I had an intuition that I might need to stay at home from church and let George and Riley go on their own.  But I got dressed to go and read the chapter I needed to read for my class and off we went.  But after hugging that precious girl (who had told me she was nervouscited herself) and watching her walk off and get on the big chartered bus, I lost it.

I had big sunglasses on but the tears were rolling down my cheeks. I tired to wipe them away so no one would see them.

In hindsight, I really, really needed that release.  We drove off to church in silence except that I explained that I would come back and pick them up.

The funky thing is trying to hide the emotion from those other parents in the parking lot or in my own car.   I did tell George and Riley that I needed to grieve her and some other things.   I NEEDED to let this out.  I really, really needed this release.

Sometimes the catalyst that tips you over really isn't the entire reason why the tears come.  And I don't need to analyze why, I just need to let it flow.  Be kind to myself and embrace the tears or whatever emotion it is.  No judging that I'm a wussy, or that I'm crazy, or that I feel too much.

 How many times have I heard someone say in real life or on tv, "I'm sorry, I didn't mean to make you cry?")

Why does crying get such a bad rap?

I cried off and on all morning.  And I still have to tell myself it's okay to do so when I don't see others doing the same thing.  In the back of my mind,  I still judge myself a little for not keeping it together.  My husband is not going to feel the same as I do.  The other moms are not going to feel exactly as I do.  {codependency no more!} Learning to own my own story and allowing that story to be just as it is, has been a big hurdle.

While the tears were flowing, I know I was also grieving other things.  My engagement ring is missing (appears to be stolen) and my Dad's estate is being settled and I've been involved with the legal paperwork.   Dad is reaching from beyond his death to love in his own way.

I did have headaches in the afternoon and evening and this morning but that is O-K too.  It feels like such a relief to let all of that blocked energy flow.  I have low energy this morning and I need to nurture myself.  There is always something that needs to be done and I will do what I absolutely have to and then rest or wait to see what happens, I may be surprised.

I'm learning to roll with the flow whatever that is and be kind to myself while this is happening.


Sunday, May 31, 2015

Summer Reading Time Again

This is how we roll in our house. It is not yet June and the girls and I are all signed up for Summer Reading at the library.  Riley registered in the Teen section for the first time.

I love books.  I fell out of love with reading after I finished grad school. I didn't want to HAVE to read anything ever again.  Slowly but surely the love has come back.  My children have it. We read every night when they were little and my nine year old has been asking me to read to her again.

I have never had any difficulty with them reading for AR points at school.  They flourish.  And this year, I plan to turn my form in on time, to get my goodie bag.

Thursday, May 14, 2015

I Didn't Remember That I Loved This Mama Cass Song!

Last night was the season finale of The Middle, a hilarious family comedy.  Sue Heck graduated from high school!!  Sue is the middle child who never gives up and always has a smile on her face.   She tried out for everything and didn't make anything.  She created her own cheerleading squad for the wrestlers with a band of misfits. Kids at school didn't know who she was even after four years of high school.   I got teary eyed watching her montage.  They played this Mama Cass song which I have not heard in a long, long time.  I had really forgotten about the song.

But I knew every word.

Why did I start to cry at the end of the montage?  I went around with a smile on my face all the time like Sue.  I don't know if I had perseverance (?) but I'm learning to be like Sue now!  You have to follow your own pathway, especially if the normal or regular one doesn't work for you.

So now I'm making my own way and sometimes it is very lonely.  I don't fit in with a crowd.  Whatever a crowd is anymore?  There are things that I just don't care about anymore.  But it's come to my attention that I must do it my way.  That is the only thing that lets my soul sing.  And once your soul has sung, you can't go back.  You can't do what doesn't work anymore,

Here's to the year of Sue and Making it your own way however and whatever that is!