To old relics…

Check check….
HA! It’s still here. I just read my Luci post and damn that shit hit hard. 
Crying, the whole works.

Never thought I would revisit this but more and more I find myself (as many do in these wild and crazy times) returning to things, people, habits that make us happy.
Stars know we need it.

Not entirely sure where to begin so I’ll just go for it.
Is it shitty that the pandemic has brought about some of the best months of my life? Forced isolation has brought with it a clarity I have been seeking for a long time.
I now realize why I was anxious to see certain people, to go some places, to partake in some activities.
They were shit really, and only brought me down.

Saying no is something I have always struggled with. The anxiety surrounding the very idea of saying no to any event always seemed so insurmountable, not worth the effort and certainly sure to launch an indelible sense of guilt that would cling to me straight though to the end of said event. Then I would say yes and realize for the hours, days, weeks, months leading up to the event that I was a total asshole. I said yes and didn’t mean it, I should want to do this, I should want to participate, I should be excited. All this shoulding would make me feel shitty. It was shitty to the people, places, things that I said yes to – that I was there and fretting the entire time. It was shitty to myself – putting unnecessary stress on an already anxiety addled mind. 

Isolation has forced habits, new and old, to rise to the surface; making me more productive, leaner, healthier, more mentally stable and confident all because seriously – what’s the fucking point. Life is short, live it. Say “fuck all” and do what we need to do to make the world a better place, do the shit that makes you happy. Damn the man.

By the way, we can’t let the USPS die, we can’t let it be killed. We can’t let that psychotic, racist bastard win. Buy some stamps and send some letters to your reps and senators, sign the petitions and for f**ck’s sake vote in 79 days. Please and thank you.

 

Dust Motes

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I have always thought of each of us as planets. These hardened, compacted stardust celestial beings that wander through space and time orbiting family, friends, work. Each thing competing to be our sun, our pull, our light and our reason. Now I see that we are each the universe. We each contain everything there is to know about everything and we are too complex for our own good. Why does our heart beat. Why does our brain function. What is the electric current that pumps the blood and fires the thoughts. How do our bodies contain it? How do we hold it in, this ever changing and expanding universe we all carry around all the time.

Split-Aparts and Star Dust

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Today I have connected some dots. Some of the star dust dots that we are all made of and that I have always wanted to physically feel in my blood and in my skin. I never liked to sleep a whole lot. Not that I didn’t like sleeping, just that I loved to go to bed late, when no one else was up in the house and when I felt like I was the last person left in the world – the last person awake to feel it. The last to appreciate its quiet and stillness and beauty. I was an explorer in uncharted territory about to discover al the secrets of the universe. I was about to feel the star dust. I loved waking up early to start the day, so I had time to get shit done. I despised naps and never took them, and if I happened across one accidentally I was pissed that I wasted the time and would almost always wake up with a headache and a groggy disposition. Then I slowly, over time, slipped into this weird state of sleepiness. Like I couldn’t understand how I had gotten so old so quickly and needed all this sleep all of the sudden. How had I used to go to bed at 3 am only to wake up at 6:30 or 7 and not necessarily jump out of bed, but certainly not dawdle in it. I’ve had a few scattered months over this past six or seven years of sleepiness where I had this energy. To wake up at 5:30, or better yet 5:15 even, to burn some calories on the elliptical, and better yet do an interval workout too, so I could kill 700 nasty calories before I had breakfast and headed to work. Now I recognize those months as manic periods before the fall. This past week or so I have found I am dreaming again, a lot. I haven’t in so long it’s strange to stir several times a night from one dream to enter another. I admitted – out loud and everything –  just yesterday – that I don’t like sleeping much anymore. I just toss and turn, and I miss being physically and mentally awake with my love – even though we literally spend every waking moment together. I can’t get comfortable anymore, I’ve always been a side or back sleeper and now I have no idea what I’m doing but I think I’m turning into one of those….a stomach sleeper. I have gone to sleep later and later to read or watch or absorb or create new ideas and characters and lives to live. I wake up later then I used to but not by much and lingering in bed is a new joy because it is the first few minutes of the day and I get my love all to myself and the world still feels asleep outside and it is just us figuring out what lay ahead for us. Today and forever. I used to hear and see and feel the potential that people saw in me. I loved it. I totally thought that even though I was not attractive – that maybe that meant I could become deep and a philanthropist and change the world for the better and I would be somebody. It equally excited and scared me because I always feared in the back of my mind that I was sure to disappoint them all. Then that faded and I started to see only the black holes that I was and that my life had become and all the things I had screwed up and all the ways I had disappointed. I did not deserve anything I had, I have seen all the good and potential and beauty and love in everyone around me but I kept them at arm’s length. I have never trusted anyone of them enough to be really truly honest. I don’t know that I know who I am to be honest about – but I finally admitted last week – out loud and everything – that my parents divorcing when I was so young and the way that it went down, left me with abandonment issues and I’ve never been able to give myself to anyone the way that they deserved – because I was sure they would leave anyway. I’ve been waiting for years for everyone to figure out what a piece of shit I am and finally just give up on me so I could drift away into the black holes. Now, I don’t know that I see the potential I used to feel so strongly, but I don’t really care. I just care that I am seeing all of this more clearly then I ever have before. I care that I can admit all of this tar out loud to my love for the first time – and he still loves me. I just care that the black holes are closing in on themselves and not me. I am still terrified of them. Yesterday I was so excited and bubbly and talkative and acting like I haven’t in so long that I don’t remember that I have ever acted like that – and I was sure it meant I was just in an up swing – sure to be followed by a down. But that’s ok, because I have realized that I need to start to forgive myself soon before I crush myself into oblivion. I am only thirty. I still have a lot of life ahead and that really isn’t as ominous as it always used to feel. Like a weight around my neck.

I still want to feel that star dust, bubbling just below the surface. To feel connected to the universe and to feel how infinitesimally small I really am to to appreciate the details in the huge picture for exactly what they are.
And not to get too dragged down by the mire…Saturn is the best planet, so that’s nice.

 

Sometimes life figures you out first.

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So it has been a red letter day. We got up, did some errands, spent some money (what felt like a lot) on staples for the house and cat. Then got a super exciting Hario V60 drip coffee kit and 20% off open box/display Bonavita electric kettle for free from Williams-Sonoma with AmEx points and we still have $16 left over. Then spent a fairly productive day working on stuff for the cafe, talking to Steve about readjusting plans for the project board, playing with our new coffee geek goods, making stew and getting quite a start on the business plan. Then after dinner I started to kind of freak out, regretting the shitty (but good paying) jobs we’ve given up for the security they offered (gross), regretting the two months and thousands of dollars spent traveling this year to figure our shit out away from people (f-cking stupid and ungrateful), just asking all the what ifs until they became a swirling vortex of black tar negative thoughts…What if we suck at this? What if we hate it? What if we know nothing about coffee? What if we get burned out woking too hard and too long? All questions that have reasonably simple answers. We won’t suck – we know this. We won’t because we will be working together to build our future like we’ve wanted to forever – and if we hate it, then at least we tried. We do know a lot about coffee already, and we can learn more. We will hire some additional help. But the biggest one and scariest one and the one I really hate f-cking asking because I feel like a f-cking coward doing it and I don’t like that a question can get the better of me…is…what if we fail? And still, at the end of the day, so what. So we fail at opening a business, at least we tried. At least we still have family to help us out for a couple months to get back on our feet. At least we have never felt hunger or thirst or needed a bed at night. We are lucky. And just when I was starting to feel better, more positive and not so negative nervous – just more cautiously optimistically anxious…I get an email for a possible egg donation match. It would be my fourth. First was in June 2012, second August 2012, third May 2013…I have always thought of the extra money as fantastic and helpful and great. It helped me to quit Allstate which was a quagmire of misery. It helped me to figure out some shit and face some fears and learn a whole lot about me, yoga and others by getting RYT200 certified. It helped fund these past two months – even as it has gotten dangerously low. Mostly I have felt that it was some sort of dream karma. Helping people fulfill a dream that I do not share for myself and my family (that being my Love and Me and a future for our existing family and friends but to never add to the number personally) – but in some messed up cosmic way – to maybe gain some karma assistance in fulfilling our dreams for our family and our future. So for this email to have come today…I have to believe that things sometimes do happen for a reason.

The First Fortnight

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Today marks two weeks of being 30, and there is no real difference. Age really is just a number after all. I had a fantastic birthday, spent time with my love, explored some of our favorite haunts in Detroit and even received an awesome birthday message from my favorite, Lainey Gossip. All in all – it was a fantastic day. The past 14 days have been busy, said good bye to Ann Arbor (for now) with a visit last weekend, and tonight is my big teaching practicum final for yoga training. In roughly eight hours you will likely hear a huge sigh of relief emanating from Rochester Michigan. In the morning I take my final written test and hopefully by eight on Sunday night I will be a certified RYT-200 yoga teacher. Fingers crossed and a drum roll please, I cannot wait for this twelve month (is that all!?!) journey to come to a close. I am super nervous. Anxiety is threatening to choke me sometimes and yet I have a tremendous sense of calm thinking that no matter what, the following truths will hold. I will not be perfect – but no one is. I will deliver a decent class – I have practiced too much not to. I will face my (sometimes) greatest fear of speaking in front of people and possibly making an utter fool of myself – all while most people in the world face things that are much scarier every second of their lives.

Day Forty Eight

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Yesterday my love and I posted our few nicer pieces of furniture on Craigslist – and today we got our first bite! That’s not my first of the day, but still pretty exciting. Today was the first day that I really regretted not doing more on this crazy mission of firsts. It’s been weeks, and I still have some major crossing off to do on the old Life List I put together. Sky diving, visiting exotic locals, passing the Japanese Language Proficiency Exam, all sorts of big checks to administer still. Yet, if there is anything these weeks have taught me – it’s to chill the f-ck out, to appreciate every day for whatever it is and offers and to look forward to living and checking those items off. I have really started to look at my madness and how I fit into the world differently. With that in mind, my inner geek wants to kick it to some of my favorite Harry Potter quotes…because I wasn’t teary eyed enough today.

 

it matters not what someone is born, but what they grow to be

it does not do to dwell on dreams and forget to live

it is our choices that show what we truly are, far more than our abilities

Day Thirty Five

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I don’t really know what to say. I had a small first today – I observed (i.e. did not participate in but was present for) a yin yoga class for the first time today. It was a great moment because I really felt that a lot of my talking about teaching people how to heal themselves culminated today. Just being in an environment of healing, both mentally and physically, was what I needed to understand why I started this crazy journey in the first place. You could tangibly feel it in the room. People working through myriad issues, trying to work with their strengths and blast through their weaknesses. To conquer their minds and bodies and accept their limitations.

Yet – I still feel more then a little dead. I cannot escape this feeling of dread, of being lost, of never knowing the home I can’t find. It is frustrating. It is unsettling. Who am I to teach to heal, to accept oneself wholly and completely – when, I don’t know what I am hanging onto sometimes. I cannot wrap my head around waking up everyday when everyday I make such little progress. I honestly feel like I have never really known myself and I am running out of patience trying to learn. I think back on myself at different stages in my life and I feel like a fraud. Like I have never really been true to myself. I feel like I am on borrowed time. I am tired of looking back but I feel like if I don’t push through my past these next few weeks and come out a stronger and truer me then I have ever been before – I will always be looking back. I need to understand where I have been in order to figure out my future.

Don’t we all have to face our demons before we can defeat them? Does it normally take this long?

Most importantly I want to live for today and to embrace it, to not deny my past but not to dwell on it, and to look forward to tomorrow but not to wish for it.

Most likely tomorrow will come, I will wake again, go about my day just like every other before it, and end it having made little progress. But I want to not worry about yesterday or the days to come.

Most likely these are just the ravings of a self-diagnosed manic depressive that needs to go to bed.

Day Thirty Two

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I am a bit at a loss today.

For starters, I had a productive day, I got a lot done. One thing to know about me is that I am a major to do list person. I love crossing stuff off and if I do something that’s not on the list you ask? Well, I write it on the list then cross it off. And don’t give me sh!t about it, I mean the blog is called a fistful of crazy. You knew what you were getting into. Despite all that I got done – it feels like all I did was kind of daydream the day away. Normally I get kind of pissed if I daydream too much because it doesn’t accomplish anything tangible. Today, however, I feel okay with the time I spent envisioning my love and I being somewhere else. It makes me feel hopeful and creative. I know – I’m so effing weird.

So today I had a shopping/errand trip with my mom. And for the first time in a very long time – it went well. Now typically it goes “well”, but I tend to just get through it and stew about all the little hurtful comments, the snide side remarks, the innuendoes that I am not living up to her standards or preferences. Today, well today was different. Now don’t go jumping the gun – there were plenty of opportunities for the snide remarks, the innuendoes, the back handed compliments – but either I was able to ignore them or there just were not as many as usual.

I actually think I was just able to hear them differently.

I feel as though these past weeks have brought about some revelations. Realizations about many of my relationships, how I have always viewed them, how right or wrong I have been in doing so, what and who I am to myself and those around me and the weight I put in other people’s opinions. Super broad subjects, I know. But speaking specifically is a little more open and personal than I can get right now. I’d need a whole lot of alcohol and time on my hands for that. For now, sufficed to say, that whatever I heard today from my mom – at the end of our few hours together, I actually felt like she just wanted me to be happy. Just to be happy but sometimes on her terms and in her way. And while I think the qualification is something that I do not agree with – something I do not like (to place on my wishes for loved one’s happiness, nor to be placed on their wishes for my happiness) – it still comes down to her wanting me to be happy and successful. To be the best person I can be, and even if she doesn’t get a lot of my choices, doesn’t agree with my getting a back tattoo, doesn’t like that I was not married in the Catholic church, she still wants me to happy and have love and be loved.

And she loves me. And that means a lot. It means that I am finally getting through the bs, not being so cynical all the time, and accepting that I am loved. I am worthy of love and I need to start loving myself. Because if someone as crazy and strong and giving and smart as my mom loves me for who I am then I need to too. And if my lovely husband can love me, then I can too.

Wow, I am really starting to sound like a crazy yoga chick. Whatever. It’s all about the love man.

the greatest thing you’ll ever learn is just to love and be loved in return – eden ahbez

 

Day Twenty One

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Packing today for our trip to Nashville. Super pumped for it, so get ready for some major boners the next few days over traveling with my love, seeing Jack White perform, shiny new vinyl records, exploring Nashville, enjoying delicious vegan food and more. Not today though. Today I want to pontificate a little about beliefs.

For the first time on this blog/exercise in avoiding therapy, whatever you want to call it, I will talk about religion and my beliefs. I was raised catholic, which of course means that I have since become alienated from the church and have no real interest in organized religion. When raised in the catholic faith you either get confirmed and move on once you’ve satisfied the parent(s) or you stick it out showing up late to mass and putting money in the basket every week for the rest of your life. That being said, I have always been interested in studying various religions, belief-systems, theologies and philosophies.

Overall, I can’t chose just one system that works for me. I pick and choose what helps me to explain the existence of space, time, us, the universe and life. I believe in karma, nothing is without consequences, you reap what you sow and you better sow some love or you will end up drowning in hate. I believe in the power of love and compassion. We can all be better people, we just need to work at it. We can all be happy, we need to work at that too. I wear my mala beads everyday because they are a talisman that remind me of what weights I carry, what I have to let go of and what I have to live for. I believe in the power of meditation and enlightening your mind to better understand your strengths and limitations. Enlightenment is truly something to work towards. We all need to help each other, and look out for other people.

I believe that I need to remind myself of the importance of compassion everyday and remember to practice it. We are all works in progress, perfection is unattainable and that is all part of the journey of life.

 

 

There is no need for temples, no need for complicated philosophies. My brain and my heart are my temples; my philosphy is kindness.

His Holiness the Dalai Lama

 

 

Life is beauty through and through
Life is sunny, life is cool
Life is even easy too
But if my word is to be true
Life is something to behold
But if the truth is to be told
Let us not leave out any part
Do not fear, it’s safe to say it here
You will not be called a weakling nor a fraud
For feeling the pain of the whole wide world
You want to help but can’t help the feeling you cannot
And it’s killing you while you’re just trying to smile from your heart
So go on, say it, on the same knees you’re praying
Yes, life is hard

Come celebrate
Life is hard
Come celebrate Life is hard
Our life is all we are

Celebrate it in the sun, promenade it with everyone
Elevate it in a song
And I’ll be there to play it, don’t get me wrong
When I feel like dying and being gone
When life is hard
There’s just one thing, let’s not forget
Yes! life is it!
Life is it, life is it, it’s where it’s at
It’s getting skinny, getting fat
It’s falling deep into a love,
It’s getting crushed just like a bug
Life there’s no love, it’s getting beat into the ground
It’s getting lost and getting found,
To growing up and getting round
It’s feeling silence, feeling sound
It’s feeling lonely, feeling full
It’s feeling oh so beautiful!
Yes!

Come celebrate
Life is hard
Come celebrate
Life is hard
Our life is all we are

Life is Hard

Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros

Day Twenty

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Whoa! Made it to the big 2-0. Sooo…..yeah.

I actually had a fairly meaningful conversation with a coworker today about life and accomplishments. Mostly he talked, but I enjoyed listening. He spoke of regrets. Spending so many years of his life spoiling the wrong people, living for the wrong people. All he wants is his youth back, and all those years back, so he could have them now with his current wife. He loves her, he worships her, he wishes he could give her more, spoil her more, treat her to a better life now that he has her. He said he looks back at his almost 51 years and regrets that he hasn’t accomplished more – not so much for his own selfish reasons – but so he could have more of everything to share with his wife.

That is how I feel about my husband. I love him, I worship him, he deserves so much in and from life, he deserves to be spoiled. And I don’t mean materially. He deserves trips, time to do what he wants to do, to study what he wants to learn, he deserves the best of everything. I want so much to build a life worth living, that is meaningful and positive, a life that contributes towards a better world. I want to be successful so my husband and I can spend time living our lives together. Take trips, go to dinners and concerts and movies, adopt teenagers and help them through college and navigate life, treat friends and family to these luxuries, basically – just live. I mean everyone works to put food on the table, to pay the bills, to provide. But is that living? Or surviving?

Either way, it was the first time I have had a conversation like that with anyone other then my husband – and maybe my mom. Never have I discussed this with friends or family or anyone really. That kind of haunts me a little to think of it now. But at the same time – it was the first time I felt “outside” validation in wanting. It felt good.

In light of today’s discussion and ensuing afternoon of thought; I feel like I need to start working on a personal mission statement.

That sounds totally creepy and Joel Osteen-y. I hate that guy.

Okay, I digress. If I attempt to lay it all out in one sentence it would read as follows.

I want to build a successful business(es) in which I can hire friends and family that want the jobs, help support those that want to create their own, and foster an environment around me at all times that is centered on creating a more compassionate world through open-minded education, travel, giving of time and money, exploring and loving.

Kind of a run-on isn’t it? I need to work on that – but I think I just wrote out, for the first time, a mission statement for my life.

 

Random Thought of the Day: There is a group of theoretical physicists that suppose the birth of the universe could have occured after a four-dimensional star collapsed into a black hole and ejected debris. There is another group that believes our universe actually is existing inside of a black hole. And here I sit trying to figure out how f#%&ed up I am before I turn thirty. Certainly puts a different spin on things.