Nerves

I am leaving for Japan in only a matter of weeks… and I am slightly terrified.

I trust that it will be a perfect trip, however, that doesn’t mean that everything is automatically sorted for me for the trip.

I still am figuring out where to stay and when.

My Japanese needs a serious boost in preparation.

I need to figure out price options for when my brother is there with me, and then find and book that place, whatever it will be.

I need to reach out to everyone else I want to be sure to see.

I need to figure out if I can manage dance shoes in my packing.

I need to figure out what to bring.

I need to pack.

I need to relax just a bit, and still get my stuff handled.

Today, I started a bit of Japanese review, by watching the next episode of this silly Japanese Netflix Original I used to watch when I lived in Japan, “Good Morning Call”.

And it felt good.

It actually excited me about my upcoming voyage, as opposed to leaving me stressed about it all.

I looked up this week Airbnb options, and now have a bit of an idea as to what I might end up doing for all three parts of my Japan time.

I have reached out in the past week and a half to all but one of my super important visit people (the one had already agreed about my visiting a month or two ago).

My knees are continuing to heal, and I am gaining confidence that they will be okay by the time I am in Japan.

Hopefully, they will be healed and at full, comfortable function well before then.

Also, I am exhausted…. and my teeth hurt… my lower teeth, especially…

I had to change my aligners today, so my teeth are all sore and in pain… however, this is the first day of my final month with these aligners all the time(!!!).

Yay!!

Anyway, gotta sleep… 4-ish start in the morning… :/

Love the World.

Peace

Hannah

Post-a-day 2019

Family

………………….

Journal entry for August 2, 2019

Today, we learned that C— has no penis…

………………….

This evening was an extended family evening, and a rather wonderful time.

There was chatter, discussion, story-telling, and lots of laughter.

At one point, one of my cousins, G—, shared this delightful story with us, and I knew immediately that I just had to write about it, because it was well worth sharing with the world.

She and her husband have two little girls, approximately aged four years and two years, and then a baby boy aged almost ten weeks.

Her husband, C—, was changing the diaper of the baby boy, and A—, the eldest girl, was observing.

A: Daddy, what’s that?!

C: Uh, well, it’s a penis… it’s because he is a boy… he is a boy, so he has a penis… that’s what makes him a boy, instead of a girl…

A:……. But Daddy, you’re a boy and you don’t have a penis….

C:… Actually, yes, I do have a penis…

A:….. Really?????

Conclusion from my cousin telling the story: Emasculated by a four-year-old. πŸ˜‚

Afterward, my grandma commented that she thought it was such a shame that no one was documenting this sort of thing, – I had already determined that I was definitely writing about it tonight, but I didn’t mention anything about it – and my aunt said that the point was people telling one another stories…

My grandma was worried that the stories get lost, you see, and so my mom leaned over the counter, and starter scribbling with an imaginary pen into an imaginary book, saying aloud, “August 2, 2019: Today, we learned that C— has no penis.”

My uncle, whose son-in-law C— is, and who genuinely likes C—, nearly cried himself out of his chair, he laughed so hard at that – I mean, we all laughed rather hard, but he practically exploded with his laugher.

It was a very good little time tonight. πŸ™‚

Thank you, God, for this blessing.

Note: Yes, yes, I know gender stuff is all up and about right now, however, I am not letting it disturb the hilarity of this particular stupendous father-daughter exchange – the story is not meant to offend in any way; it is merely something that happened that I find wonderful and worth sharing.

P.S. It occurred to me that, while I still am not there with the solo dancing I want to teach in prisons, I am at the very edge of receiving my yoga teacher certification, – a type of yoga that uses lots of meditation and mantra and healing exercises – and I could look into teaching that in prisons… something also incredibly beautiful and powerful and potentially extremely beneficial to those living in prison, especially as part of their preparation to move back into the world outside of prison… So, yeah… I’m suddenly rather inspired to get that certification finished ASAP.

P.P.S. And then, that had me thinking that I might somehow get the opportunity to do portraits of people in prison…. and that could be a beautiful project, be it for their future work portraits or for a neat project of sharing about prisons with the world… yeah… that’s gonna stay on the side in my mind, ready for when the time is right to act on it… definitely… πŸ™‚

Post-a-day 2019

Let’s Nike it

The music is playing on my head again… the music from our routine, I mean…

Is it because I want to do the routine?…, because I want to be that clean (in my dancing)?…, because I want to be the professional I know it would lead to being in the dance world?…, or because I want that body shaping I had at the time?…

In the past, it was all about the first several reasons, but I think it is, this time, about the final reason: the body.

I watch videos from then, and I am surprised at how slim my legs are, how flat my belly is… and that surprise really drives home how unfit I had become in the past couple years.

I get it, though – a lot of stress in a certain kind of way can do this to me, especially with how I was emotionally and psychologically until this calendar year.

Now, however, I want to be done with it all, and move forward as the person I want to be, physical body and all.

We’ve been doing this exercise for two months, now… I was worried to look at a scale, because it doesn’t feel like the fat has been rolling off or anything… and I didn’t want to imagine I had been as bad off as I would have had to have been, if it has been rolling off, and this is how I look right now… (hope you understood that)…

I have so much muscle showing up, it’s almost funny…, but then it’s also a bit sad that the only thing left to complete the visual picture is food – the food I have done a terrible job at managing these past several months with my in-and-out circumstances with my home (which continued with a sudden water issue that kicked me out again last night, after having had only five days back at home since the last necessary departure)… so, in a way, I’m not fit yet, because I don’t have a stable home…

How crazy an idea is that?… really makes me wonder about people who generally have no stable homes… hmm… it’s so dreadful, even knowing that I have somewhere I could stay (most of the time, anyway)…, I can only imagine not having that, and trying to be healthy… even good emotional health would be troublesome to come by at that point, I think… man…

Anyway… so I’m back at home again, and I’m clearing out things, cleaning up and tidying, slowly taking on the KonMari lifestyle for realz – I want this, and it definitely feels like the world has been asking me to do it lately… perhaps a crazy and spectacular move is in the mix in the near future, and this has all been necessary to prepare me for it… only those in the know know, and I do not seem to be one at the present time… if only future self could hand me some words of wisdom. πŸ˜›

Actually, perhaps this clearing out is due to inspirational words of wisdom from my future self… we shall see what comes, I guess, and that is all we can do about the future, really.

And so I will make way for what is to come, and I will be better prepared in doing so than if I had stayed unaltered … for life is change, and nothing is ever stagnantly the same, so let us change willingly and wholly with life, embracing it as we go… that’s my present intention, anyway. πŸ™‚

Let’s do it.

Post-a-day 2019

Peace of…

I went shopping for some jean shorts today… and it was kind of a total bust.

I ended up having a sort of miniature breakdown afterward, and had to keep reminding myself during it that I actually was fine.

None of the shorts fit – shorts with the same size on the label as one a other would prove to be way too small or way too big, and sometimes just a little too small…, but nothing fit me, and I felt so fat, especially in light of the fact that I’ve noticed the muscle building but the fat going nowhere since joining this gym.

I moved to the bluejean pants, because some of them are the same price, anyway, and I can cut them off easily to make shorts.

That, too, was rather busty, – think C’s instead of double D’s, though – though I tried on loads of them.

At one point, I was preparing to try on a pair of jeans that were the same brand as one of my favorite pairs of jeans during childhood… I wondered in I might be about to reclaim that relationship with the brand and jeans… I actually had duct tape all along the inside of the jeans, in strips and patches to seal and secure the many slits and holes that kept showing up throughout the crotch and butt area (because the fabric was just too thin).

I wondered if that rekindling was about to happen… and dropped that idea when they totally wouldn’t even go all the way on me…

Oh, well…

In the end, I enjoyed trying on shoes I ended up not getting (which I also enjoyed), I bought a pair of jeans (as pants/capris) that don’t necessarily look amazing on me but that make me super happy and fill me with joy whenever I see them, and I bought another pair of jeans that I plan to turn into shorts tomorrow, at which point I expect I will love them and be filled with joy at the sight of them, too. πŸ™‚

I wore the real pants tonight, and French tucked my dress into them… I even got compliments on my outfit, it apparently looked so good to others… personally, I enjoyed it and I felt happy and comfortable and confident in it, and those are what I’m really looking for in an outfit, anyway…, but it is still nice to have that added bonus of praise from time to time. πŸ˜›

Totally.

Anyway… oh, I went dancing tonight – first time in probably eight or ten months… or 11 months, actually.., so, yeah… that was a good thing.

And I enjoyed myself doing that, too.

But it also reminded me that my plans to lose this excess fat are a great idea – despite all this exercise, it was still really tiring hauling myself around all evening, dancing. πŸ˜›

Anyway,.. goodnight!

Peace

Hannah

Post-a-day 2019

Photography

Well, today was crazy for photography for me!

First, it turns out that the owner of this awesome dance studio in town and I work out at the same gym… so, I actually met him a few weeks ago, but just didn’t know about the studio until this morning.

And the dance studio part came up, because we were talking about photography, since he’d brought his camera to class this morning, and was letting people look through them on the camera after class… I asked him about the lens, since I knew it took something expensive to get photos on that setting.

He asked if I was a photographer, and I told him that, as of last week, I sure am… and he asked about my background in photography, and then he told me about the photos he tends to do, and showed me some of them on his website.

They were awesome and fun and really neat portraits, and I totally loved and was inspired by them.

He said to get in touch, so I can come by his studio sometime, which is nearby… ‘Oh? What kind of studio is it?’… ‘I actually own a dance studio, and it’s in there.’… ‘Uh…, what dance studio?’…

I could hardly believe when he said the name of the studio – super excitement!

So now, it looks like I’ll have the chance to intern with him a bit on the photography he does, which will include getting to visit the studio and likely some spectacular dancers do their stuff for shoots from time to time!

At the social the gym had later on today, he and his wife and their baby were in attendance, and he introduced us, and brought up the idea of my doing some photography with them and working with them some, saying also that his wife does really wonderful photography, too, that is different from his own.

She, too, told me that we could do some shoots together, and even mentioned an upcoming one (but she verified that I was connected with her husband on Facebook, which I am, as of our conversation after the workout this morning, so that she would be able to get in touch with me so we could talk).

!!!!!!

Totally awesome and exciting, especially considering how I just recently started discussing how I’d like to go ahead and do some interning with a different style of photographer from the wedding photographer with whom I’ve interned this past year.

And now, it seems, I have that opportunity!

I knew the gym was the perfect place for me to be (Yes, I say that to myself every time it gets really hard in a workout and I feel like crying). πŸ˜›

So….(!) then I went to help out a photographer with some commercial work he’s doing for a sort of hotel in town.

At the end of that, which was a rather fun time, we were treated by the hotel liaison to almost-filthy-expensive dinners in their restaurant, at which point, the liaison recruits me to do some fun and creative photos of a few things for their social media…

… They don’t currently have money in the budget for photography for social media, so she was about to start looking for an art student or photo intern to do the photo…, but, since I was there with this photographer, she would love for me to take it on myself to take the photos.

(!)

And then she said that, while they can’t give money, since there’s no budget for it, they can do some trading with me… nights at the hotel, or meals at the restaurant, or something else like that.

(!!!)

And my photographer said for me to go for it, so I am!

I said that I’m doing it, and here I seem to be, actually doing it… and the world is lining up so that I can do it more and more.(!)

I’m just really excited about photography tonight… yay!

I don’t know what will come of this all, and that’s okay with me… the point is that I am incredibly grateful for its all having happened today, and for the experience of such enjoyment today. πŸ™‚

Good day… good day… and so much else was really good about today, too… really good day today. πŸ™‚

Post-a-day 2019

How far we’ve come

I saw the light
I’ve been baptized
By the fire in your touch
And the flame in your eyes
I’m born to love again
I’m a brand new man

As these words rang out across the stadium – quite clearly, surprisingly, seeing as where we were – my lips were already moving in synch, silently matching every word since the initial “I”… and tears welled in my eyes, beginning almost immediately to overflow.

I was attending the Brooks and Dunn concert at the rodeo tonight in Houston, kind of as a celebration of my life, for my birthday – something for me, on my own.

I’d asked my mom to stick around with me, but she was ready to head home, so I was okay hanging on my own for the musicians and their music.

When I was about eight years old, I attended the Brooks and Dunn performance at the Astrodome, also for the rodeo.

During their performance, when walking around on the dirt, they pulled two ladies out from the audience to dance with them.

I remember distinctly being upset and embarrassed as the one lady proved, after two quick but failed attempts, that she could not do any sort of partner dancing, let alone the by of two-stepping one of them wanted to do with her.

Rather than rejecting the lady, reading her out for a better model – that’s actually how my brain analyzed it at the time – he just grabbed her around her waist/hips area, and swung her around in a circle or few.

My frustration at this lady for having been unprepared for such a monumental opportunity – dancing with Brooks and Dunn – was not only projected blindly, but had me consider how I would have done, if I’d been the one pulled out onto the floor…

I was rather confident that I would have been able to manage it.

However, I fully acknowledged that I was not certain.

And so I made it my business immediately after this event to make certain that I knew how to two-step and could do it with just about anybody on demand.

Fast-forward a couple decades, and see me at the concert tonight… I found it almost ironic that, though I never anticipated to be pulled out to dance with Brooks and Dunn, here I was, two decades later, likely one of the best country western dancers in the entire stadium, knowledge, ability, and a world title to prove it.

Isn’t that at least a little bit totally crazy?(!!!)?

Anyway, so I can dance, and extremely well, but that’s only part of my mentioning all of this.

When the guys began playing and singing tonight, I was in instant and somewhat constant tears (even throughout the whole show!), right?

Right.

And it occurred quickly to me, This is the power of music.

I was somehow transported to my life when I listed probably daily to Brooks and Dunn music, as I simultaneously saw all that had happened between them and now, how what felt like a lifetime and ten different people ago had somehow led me to today, to who I am today.

There was a lot of good and a decent amount of bad in there, especially early on, and it was a very, very full time all throughout.

And, somehow, here I am, experiencing it all again, while feeling empowered by the open bliss and joy for life I felt back then, reminded of the sadness of what I went through off and on, and encouraged by the fact that I have made it to here so far, and I’ve plenty more wonderful expansion and beautiful growth yet to come for myself in my life.

All of this from music, specific songs and notes and voices and instruments all put together in a certain way, as though, almost, specifically and intentionally with me in mind.

It was of the best kind of medicine.

And this reminds me of how my high school band director always used to tell us that music is a language… tonight, their music spoke directly to me, throughout every place within me.

Post-a-day 2019

Bilingual Ballet

I found myself thinking of (and, of course, missing) my ballet class in Japan.

I was the tallest by a lot, and it was mostly older ladies (not old, but definitely older), and everyone was super sweet and happy and even a bit giddy every class.

And the teacher and I had an unwanted but accustomed distance-by-language-barrier, because my technical Japanese was utterly iffy, and her English possibly below that… that is, we had this distance until the night that we delightfully discovered that we both spoke French rather fluently… then we got on quite comfortably, and even more familiarly than I did with any of the others, because we could say so much to each other now.

I had always asked on occasion for the teacher to repeat something she’d said or done (in Japanese, of course), and I continued that…, but now I could and would ask for clarity at times when I still wasn’t certain what the goal or instruction was (if you’ve ever done ballet, you can understand how important it is to understand what muscles are doing what in a movement), and that part would be in French.

All in all, Monday nights at ballet class were always great, and I miss them now, especially with it getting cold outside (that was when I’d first started going to the classes).

Post-a-day 2018