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Monthly Archives: June 2012

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Being alone and frustrated with parenting alone on a Friday night is no good. You end up placing your hands in your kid’s craft paint all over the floor and making hand prints all over the couch like you’re reaching for a man that isn’t there.

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My love affair with caffeinated coffee does me wrong time and time again… Panic attacks are for ze birds.

Best Perk about Working From Home and/or (F)unemployment

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When you see news segment pieces about people working from home they more often than not, jokingly highlight the standard benefits of working from home. The short commute to the kitchen for coffee or the work uniform of pajamas. Then there’s the more obvious perks: less gas, setting your schedule, no childcare expenses.

But I am hear to tell you the best thing about working from home (which to my family would still be seen as unemployment), is being able to shit at home whenever I feel like it. That’s right, I can piss as often as I want, I can take as long as I want, I can read while I shit, I  can drink as much water (or beer and rum) as I want, I can be unafraid to eat the main food source I can afford, BEANS.

Being able to shit at home as frequently as you want is a glorious, nay I say sacred, perk to being at home that I am surprised doesn’t get much airtime. A person feels so much more comfortable when their digestive system is functioning in a relaxed, optimal mode. Yes, just as sex has the ability to impact us on an emotional level, I think shitting at our convenience affects us on a profound emotional level too. Getting the waste out. Letting go of what’s toxic. Not holding onto shit emotionally. (Okay, I’ll stop!) I think of it as the (reverse) somatic-psycho effect. For now, I will just enjoy being able to drink my coffee and the inevitable rush to the bathroom ten minutes later.

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Untitled by tiff85
Untitled, a photo by tiff85 on Flickr.

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Friday night, Ian came over and as always we were talking nonstop. And one of the things that came up in the conversation was having a hypersensitive fear of judgement. I thought about it for a second and I realized, that’s me. I acknowledged that to him. “Well, I can understand that. I am hypersensitive to judgement. I am.”  Probably one of the greatest things about my friendship with Ian is that although we are not around each other very often when we are, we seem to always hit upon something that is deep rooted and poignant about our nature and once we say it we sit there for a minute and soak in the recognition of what we just admitted to ourselves out loud. To me that night, it was that I am hypersensitive about judgement.

Having bullshit remaining from our childood has come to be one of those laughable cliches. And although,  there is no need for repressed conditioning to become an excuse and affect the rest of our lives, there is some power to realizing that how we were brought up affects the strategies we use to live our lives now.

Probably one of the simplest and most profound ways I think childhood conditioning affected me is the way I learned to lie (not consciously per se) in order to not just receive approval by others or to manipulate people, but as a survival tactic in order to make it through the days, weeks and years with as little confrontation as possible. I grew up in a strict religious household. (my mom was a very active Jehovah’s Witness. And I by no means, intend to bad mouth that religion. But let’s face it. They’re strict by modern standards.) And although my own beliefs aimed to the more academic side of things, I instead learned the best way to get along was to not only get good grades but to keep my focus on being the most religious, “the most spiritual”. (Even my good grades were meant for me to show my diligence as an “ambassador” of God’s people.)

As I got older, I had serious doubts about my “faith” and I did a lot of writing imploring God for faith. I remember this one particular evening lying in the field behind my house writing and I felt this flood of faith come over me and I wrote the gratitude I had. Perhaps that feeling was a more a knowing  and an optimism that everything would be okay without needing to be anxious over my lack of faith.

Although I was intimidated by judgement, I had a certain tactic, which is that I could play the “oddball” but still do everything by the book. I would follow the rules, but be broadminded, even goofy. Perhaps my genuine effort at doing the right things  made my eccentricity more palatable and refreshing that than it would have been on it’s own. This is a tactic I still find myself using as an adult.

After I got married, had my son and separated from my husband, I read a few conviction shaking novels “Atlas Shrugged” and “The Perks of Being a Wallflower.”  I think these books played their part in helping me realize that I wanted to live a life of awareness and integrity. I quit going to the meetings at the Kingdom Hall. But I didn’t explain to my mother the power behind that decision. After a while, I got tired of this appearing to her as laziness on my part. I broke free and told her that she had taught me to have integrity and that was why I was no longer attending because I was not interested in faking true belief. I did not then and do not now want my children to be motivated by fear or by guilt to do the “right thing.” I believe people are inherently good without those forces as motivating factors.

Still, though after all this, I misrepresent myself to people. I noticed this about a month ago when I talked with a man I barely know about something and he asked me what my standing was with the Lord and I responded that, “I don’t really go to church anymore.” I did not answer him honestly which would be to say that, “I am not Christian but I do often find myself enjoying the seemingly miraculous, good things in my life. And heck, I am down with Jesus. I am not sure whether there is a higher power or not but at times it seems I can not ignore there feeling this sense of security bestowed on me. That I think scientific literature is the most awe inspiring literature I have ever read.” Basically, I have complex and interested feelings on the subject that do not need converting. But to the bigger question. Why was I not more honest with how I answered that question? Because I was afraid of judgement that he might have about my fitness as a parent? Or perhaps he could reason that this is why my circumstances are difficult because my atheism is keeping me from being blessed. Either way, I copped out with this silly little pretense that I just got too busy.

This is also a similar nagging guilt I experience with my Dad. I still haven’t told him that I quit my retail job because I don’t want to interact with his judgement. And maybe I feel like I would be too receptive to his fear for me and that fear can sabotage and depress my efforts at living life in a radically different way.

But now that it’s out there in the open, that I am hypersensitive to judgement, I can see how to move on from here. I can observe how I handle the simplest of things and feel a more organic confidence rise within me.

After I admitted this fear to Ian, and I say “admitted” because it was a bit of a confession for me, he told me what he sees in me and his words catapulted me forward to a higher awareness of myself and what I contain. He told me in this eloquent way (yeah I was flattered) that he sees me as full of life and funny and intelligient person and that it was hard for him to believe that I felt fear of judgement or that I had little confidence. That even thinking about my weight as not right was a symptom of the problem because I am perfect the way I am . And he is right. Until I acknowledge the perfectness I am now, with all the characteristic flaws and differences, I won’t attract perfection. I watched an interview with Maria Forleo and Mastin Kipp today and Mastin said ,”You attract what you are.” So hell, I am clean, beautiful, loved, and while I’m at it… affluent too.

I’ll end with that.

Live Authentically

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Ask and ye shall receive. I put it out there that I was wanting some inspiration. I make the connection. Text Ian. He comes over, shows me a link for a great Youtube channel for Maria Forleo. I check out her website. I find Danielle Laporte and the Firestarter Sessions begin reading her blog and find out about David Deida. Seriously mind blown in so many ways. Live authentically. This was the message. Received. With arms wide open. And yes, I thought about Creed as soon as I typed that.

So in the course of one evening, I found great business advice, life advice as far as time management and living passionately, aiming for mastery instead of being well-rounded. These things are not new dogma or theory to me.  They are a confirmation of the path I have chosen. They are a nod to my statement said with the hesitance of a question mark.

This morning I took Zeke to Vacation Bible School at Grand Methodist. He is going with his best friend Kian. Zeke is my eldest son.( He turned 8 on the 26th of May.) After that I took Ira and Veda to the Farmer’s Market and just soaked in the vibrant atmosphere. The jams and breads and veggies. Flowers and Mackendra with her tamales and three children, baby boy on her back. Max playing guitar. I bought the kids a water and strolled around. The art vendors were set behind the farmers. I admired the Adirondack styled rocking chairs. They are the work of a true craftsman. And I aim to get some if it takes 3 years. I will truly enjoy rocking in my chairs admiring the garden that will bloom there. I came home and fixed myself a strawberry daiquiri and poured it into the coconut left from last night when Ian and I had some coconut water. Unbelievable with some sweet, juicy mango

 I picked Zeke up, fixed lunch: some macaroni noodles with a sauce made from sauteed spinach, basil, oregano, thyme , garlic, olive oil, garlic Chile sauce, stewed tomatoes and topped with Parmesan. Veda and I cuddled up on the couch and got one of those rare, luxurious 3 hour naps. Even Ira fell asleep. What a wonderful day that flew by so sweetly.


Play Day at Greenway

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Play Day at Greenway by tiff85
Play Day at Greenway, a photo by tiff85 on Flickr.