Sunday, June 30, 2013

Sex and the City Fifteenth Anniversary!

The fifteenth anniversary of the first Sex and the City show was a few weeks back.    I had to work through my prudishness to be able to really enjoy it over time.   The first years of the series pushed so many sexual boundaries of what had previously been on tv in regards to sex and the single girl, I wouldn't admit to others how much I enjoyed it.  Even now, I still found myself scared to post on FB about the anniversary.

Among the anniversary media, there were a few articles and videos which inspired me to come up with my all time 15 Favorite Moments of Sex and The City.  Here they go:

1-When Carrie was determined to be "Fashion Road Kill" by Stanford during a Fashion Show
2-All of Miranda's friends showing up for her mother's funeral, Carrie stepping in the processional and then seeing Steve and Aiden in the pew
3-When Carrie ducked sitting at her laptop when Aiden sent an email so he wouldn't see her.
4-The Batman/ Green Hornet episode:  How Aiden and Big became friends.
5-Miranda shopping for her wedding dress,  "Nothing white, ivory, I have a baby the jig is up."
6- When Smith shaves his head in solidarity with Samantha as she is losing her hair to chemo during her cancer battle.
7-Charlotte: "I'm a bad wife, I ordered Chinese." Harry saying it had arrived as he showed her the picture of the daughter they would adopt from China.  I have seen this episode numerous times and each and every time, I get verklempt.  Charlotte's infertility came in real time after mine.
8-Samantha giving Miranda her hair appointment and volunteering to babysit Miranda's son so she could go in her place. Using her "new" vibrator when the vibrating bouncy seat goes out.
9-Miranda and Steve meeting on the Brooklyn Bridge as they decide to continue their marriage
10-Harry proposing at the Jewish mixer after they had broken up.
11-Steve and Miranda realizing they should be together over the First Birthday Cake of their son in the laundry room -
12-Samantha finding a grey hair down there, accidentally dies her pubic hair red like a clown.
13-Miranda telling Big to "Go get our girl" in Paris
14-Finding out what "Big's real name was
15-The girls screaming when Carrie arrives at the coffee shop from Paris (Charlotte's baby's picture is propped on the table)

Here are my other notes about the series:  
I pulled for Aiden!  He was such a nice, handsome, and most importantly kind and giving boyfriend, but I guess Carrie needed a hint more danger.  He wasn't the one.

In the first movie, I was stunned and it took me time to acclimate to the drama of it all.  I was used to a 22 minute sitcom.  This was full scale DRAMA.  I had to watch it a couple of times to appreciate it.  AND the whole non-marriage event could have been prevented had she walked up and talked to him instead of violently hitting him with the flowers.  He was ready to get married but needed assurance from her. (But it couldn't have been a  2 1/2 hour movie had she done that...)

I love this series.  I still watch the sanitized reruns and feel like I'm sitting with old friends (the kind that I've actually never met!)  It is comforting, and funny, and poignant.  And I have to decide at what age, my daughters can watch it?!
Dragging the family to the sight of the movie non-wedding last Christmas.  The NY Public Library

Monday, June 24, 2013

Hello Middle School!

Yesterday, I attended a "Get Acquainted with Middle School meeting.  I had no thoughts going into the meeting, other than what do I wear, and let me arrive on time.  Afterward, I ran into a mom who already had a middle school student and she said, "How was it?", "Did it relieve your fears?"  I thought we moms, have all different ways of worrying.  My fear didn't kick in until after I listened to the principal talk and with the bulk of new information coming into this new section of school.  The principal's words were actually reassuring, she spoke of active communication,  and that they would take care of our "babies."

Trying on new Middle School uniform.
Yet as I left the meeting, I did feel overwhelmed and the desire to cry was strong.  It was a lot of information that just had not been on my radar, at all.  My old pattern would be to duck and hide and worry, worry, worry.  I would have worried all summer.  Yesterday, I actually read through the papers, actively discussed facts with my middle schooler and the apprehension disappeared.

I love mindfulness!  Have I told you how much I LOVE mindfulness.

I know that in the past, I would have projected my fears onto my daughter.  I may not have literally done that but in my mind, I did and I know apprehension squeaked out.

Instead of ducking and hiding or being immobilized, I am embracing.  It's a new phenomenon, it's a new way to live, it's a new day!!  My daughter will be just fine, and if not, accommodations will be made.  I will ask for help.  "Everything's gonna be alright"

I am so thankful to not live in fear, day in and day out.

Monday, June 17, 2013

"It's Their Problem, Not Yours"

I'm so ecstatic, I had an aha moment.  You see the kids are home for summer and it's been all maintenance, no preventative work! There has been no time for thinking, writing or aha moments.  But I watched just a few moments of actress Diahann Carroll on Oprah's Master Class and I was reminded of a fact.

Oh no, I just lost it...

Wait its back.  Okay- here goes.

Diahann described how on a train ride in DC when she was a young girl, she and her mother had to get up and move 2 cars down because the one they were in, was determined to no longer be integrated.  It blew her away that in the nation's capital, this discrimination would exist.  Her mother told her "it's their problem, not yours."  She went on to say that there was something wrong in their lives that they have decided to interpret it in terms of race.

This just struck a nerve in me.  Her mother was brilliant to tell her that it had nothing to do with her. Most people's actions towards me are about their internal struggles and it's really not about me.   I thought of the struggles I have internalized so deeply worrying about what other people thought and inferred that I was less than  (and this was not to the serious level of blatant racial discrimination)   For the majority of my life thus far,  I have thought so negatively about myself.  I don't feel this way any more but certain thoughts linger and pop up from time to time.  But this sound bite of Diahann Carrol's story reminded me of it.

And then there is this little golden nugget from Pastor Rick Warren: "If you live for the approval of others, you will die by their rejection." 

Hmmm.  Good stuff.

He also said the two biggest reasons people do not fulfill their purpose are envy and people pleasing.  Envy: I must be like you to be happy.  People Pleasing: I must be liked by you to be happy.
If you spend time trying to be like someone or trying to be liked, you will miss God's purpose for your life.

You cannot make other people happy.   They have to do it for themselves.  Just like I cannot wait around for others to make me happy from... Carolyn Golightly. 

This ties in with another aha I did have, I did have one last week via a FB friend!  She suggested a chapter in the Cheryl Richardson book, "The Art of Extreme Self Care."  I have been having a hard time adjusting to the summer schedule and was feeling overwhelmed.  Normally I would have to come up with reasons why I was feeling this way.  I would have to legitimize it.  I knew instinctively I don't have to legitimize it anymore, I just need to take care of myself because I am overwhelmed.  My friend told me about Chapter 3, which is entitled, "Let Me Disappoint You."  I just started giggling because the tune of "Let me entertain you" popped up.  Those around us will be disappointed and that is o-kay.  It is hard for the recovering people pleaser in me yet I truly see the need for boundaries.

I need to take care of myself all the time even before the overwhelming feelings but it has not been natural to do so.  Yet, I am practicing, practicing.  I practiced this morning and it seemed to be no big deal to the other person.  I knew I had to listen to my own intuition and what was best for me.  

(And on a cool note: I saw Diahann Carroll in a live production of "Sunset Boulevard" in Toronto years ago.)

Saturday, June 15, 2013

How Do I Know It's Summer, Let Me Count the Ways...

How do I know it's Summer? Let me count the ways...

~It's hot outside.

~It's hurricane season.

~Mallory's hair already has a green tint no matter how hard I try to keep it blonde.

~House is messy again before the cleaning ladies even leave.

~George has already complained about said house destruction.

~I'm on edge.

~The words, "I'm bored" have been uttered by a child.

~I desire an adult beverage EVERY afternoon.

~I did not take a bath one day and didn't notice until the next day- it was a bad day.

~I think ugly thoughts about the moms who just LOVE summer.

~I have written this blog about summer. : )

Friday, June 14, 2013

She Read My Mind....

OMG- Yesterday was one of those days.  Nine days of road trip vacation, first two weeks of being home alone with the kids and no solitude, and first day to realize that I never took a bath.  Ewww.
My neighbor told me about this comic on twitter.  She gets it, she really gets me!!

Wednesday, June 5, 2013

The Soulful Seven Year Old Strikes Again...

After tasting nearly all of the 65 flavors of Coke.
I am adjusting to the new summer routine.  Yesterday was our first day of summer vacation not being on a summer trip.  We got out early to pick Annie the dog up from boarding which turned into dog walking (in the heat, hello summer!), dental appointments, lunch, speech therapy appointment, impromptu inaugural visit to our club pool, supper and by 8pm, I announced my intention of taking a break from being "Mom."  They abided by my wishes but requested tuck in and kiss at bedtime and I agreed.

I visited Mallory's room first, and the spritely sage forthrightly says, "There's never a time you aren't our mom."

She always speaks the truth except when it comes time to clean.

And in that precious moment, how much more can I love this little one (or the other bigger little one?)

The imprint on my heart was deepened once again by my soulful seven year old.

Love this picture even with my lobster and bib in it.
She then pipes up and says you just need to say you need "Mom-ity" time.  This is their way of requesting individual time alone with me.

I said that is a wonderful idea and perfect way to say what I need.

Thank you, thank you very much.

I have come such a long way.  I really understand now that I am teaching them how to take care of themselves by taking care of myself.  I may hear much from them about how I'm on FB right now, but one day when they are older, I can explain it was my link to the outside world.  Their father and I chose for me stay at home and FB is my water cooler.  Now, is their chiding about FB a reminder to be present, yes, annoyingly so.  And the more I take care of myself with momity time, the more I can be present.

Sunday, June 2, 2013

Thank You, Thank You Very Much!

Got back from our 9 day driving vacation late last night.  At the last minute we decided to haul it all the way back from Atlanta leaving there at 1pm EST and arriving in Baton Rouge at 11:30pm CST.  I'm too tired to figure out if it was actually ten and a half or eleven and a half hours of driving with the zone change.  It was long but it did not feel as long as some road trips in the past.

I am very thankful to the practice of mindfulness for this.  Each time something negative occurred and negative thoughts popped in my head, I asked a question.  "Can I live with this?"  And the answer has been yes lately.

Our trek involved driving to Dallas for a concert and spending three nights there then moving on to Memphis for a two night stopover and Elvis immersion and then on to Atlanta to see our new nephew and his parents for three nights.  During the time in Dallas, I became sick with a sore throat and mild body ache which by Memphis had moved into nasal congestion and drip.  This would have devastated me in the past.  I would have worried constantly about the fact that I was sick and made myself even more miserable.  This time, I announced the need for a drug store trip, purchased medicine and I took it round the clock to keep the symptoms at bay.  The only distress that popped up was whether I would be able to hold the new nephew with my germs.

This is a slight and subtle change but I noticed it.  The absence of worry and constant fear is phenomenal.  This is a higher quality of life.  Now that I have experienced it, I never want to go back.

Enjoying the present moment is the bee's knees. : )

After the cold got better, bam, my period kicked in.  And this was even while I was doggedly applying progesterone cream to prevent said period from occurring during the trip.  My body had other ideas.  My first thought was, "Are you kidding me?" It was beginning to feel like a plague.  The next thought was hmmm, be miserable or get on with it?  And another trip to the drugstore and as Elvis would say, I was "taking care of business"

We made it to Atlanta.  My symptoms receded and I began to feel much better.  I no longer needed round the clock medicine.  I obsessively washed my hands and slathered on anti-bacterial gel and on the second day, I decided it should be okay to hold the newest member of our family for a brief time.

I became very verklempt.  I sat down in the big chair, and no one really noticed though.  This was the moment I had been waiting for.

I knew Ga Ga was with us.

I am thankful for Teresa Caputo aka "The Long Island Medium" because as she described one show, if you feel the deceased's presence, then they are with you.  I felt it.  I didn't share this because I don't know how the others would feel but it didn't matter, I felt it and that was enough.

And again, as Elvis would say, "Thank you, thank you very much!"

Thank you mindfulness.