Thank you for saying no

I think I all too often believe that saying, “No,” to something offered me is a bad thing. But that mostly feels to be so from cultural training, so to speak, and not from my own heart, not from within. When I am in touch with myself, with all that is deep inside, that makes me, it is easy to say, “No,” with comfort, ease, and confidence, whenever it is something that does not serve me. It is easy to decline certain foods that are not medicine for my body. It is easy to decline the offers of alcohol, of participation in debauchery, lechery, unkindness, and drama.

And it has become, in recent months and years, much easier to decline even the nice things, the coveted things. They do not serve me, despite their wonder and charm and how much they might serve another. And, if I were to accept them, they would weigh on me negatively, I likely would not enjoy them much, if at all, and a part of me likely would experience some amount of distaste toward myself and disdain toward the giver, whenever I saw the given article going forward in life.

However, if I say, “No,” to the beautiful article that I know will not serve me, it is then possible for that article to move on to find its true home, a place where it will be fully loved and appreciated and used. It can bring joy in the right home. And, if I accept the item, I rob the item of that opportunity to bring someone else joy.

Two nights ago, my mom offered me a spectacular lunar-Gregorian calendar and accompanying journal. They were wonderful, truly.

And I loved seeing that they existed.

And I could tell, after enjoying them for that time of discovery, that they were not destined to be valuable or beloved parts of my daily life.

And, so I asked for whom they could be. Whom did I know who might love and treasure them?

It came to me almost instantly. I asked my mom her thoughts, and she immediately lit up, knowing how beautiful the match was.

I offered the calendar and journal to that person yesterday. She nearly cried at the beauty of how much they aligned with something she has been working on this year and lately especially, and then again when the calendar’s page for now had a photo that aligned with the entire workshop she had just been teaching.

Yes, they had found their home with her.

“Thank you for saying, ‘No’,” she said to me, after I had initially explained the path of the items.

And I knew that it was because I was in touch with myself enough to acknowledge, to accept, and to speak up about how they did not feel to be for me that they did and could find their true home.

And I’m wondering now how much more often I can do that in life… with anything… and with everything…

Post-a-day 2021

Oh, dear

It is far too late for me to be awake right now. Especially considering that, not only do I have to get up at my regular time tomorrow, but I then have things back-to-back until 8:30 PM. Remember that my morning wake-up time is 4:20 AM, and my regular bedtime is 8:30 PM. It is currently 12:38 AM.

But I saw the nutritionist and chiropractor tonight, and it just happened to be a terrible week to have that happen. Today was already rather booked, from rising to 7:00 PM. But add onto that the sitting around and waiting in the office, until I finally have and finish my appointment just before midnight – I could have gone home after work, slept three hours, and then gone to the office, really. This is just a tad absurd.

Man.

Okay, deep breaths. Tomorrow will be beautiful. And I will sleep fantastically tomorrow night, for sure. Perhaps this is why I never signed up for be volunteering at the park for Wednesday morning – the Universe knew that I might need the rest then. Depending on how tomorrow goes, I might see about still signing up tomorrow night for Wednesday morning. But we shall see. Fingers crossed, and goddesses bless!! 😉

Post-a-day 2021

Brunch

I had brunch with a girl from my high school today. We weren’t friends in high school, but I had wanted to be. I told her today how she had mostly just seemed so angry in high school, and like she needed (or wanted) space, so I had mostly just let her be. She laughed and smiled a lot at that, but agreed with me, for the most part – she had been frustrated and angry quite a lot back then.

Being with her today, though, I saw clearly what I had glimpsed and guessed at back in school together: fear. I think she might be afraid of her own self, somehow, the same as we all seem to be, at least at some point in life. It just affects us all in different ways, some more different than others. Being with her today, I felt a pull to make it clear to her that she is loved and wanted; she, exactly who and how she is.

I had a wonderful time with her today. As we were leaving – four hours after we’d first arrived – I commented that our combined conversations throughout the four years of high school didn’t amount to as much as we had just talked with one anther. She laughed and agreed fully. They probably didn’t even amount to half the time of today’s brunch conversation.

But we weren’t meant to be friends back then. Perhaps it was merely a means to set a foundation upon which to build a true friendship later in life, now.

I do hope so.

Certainly, we shall see. 🙂

Post-a-day 2021

Timing

I was considering tonight how, even if I had worn my retainers to work, no one would have even known. And that isn’t because they are from Smile Direct Club, and so they are clear solid plastic, and, therefore, practically invisible when on my teeth, but because we wear masks, and so no one even sees my mouth, let alone my teeth at work. At the gym, sure I smile all the time during the tough workouts, but any other time people are nearby, masks are covering our mouths.

Which had it occur to me that this past year would have been the perfect time for people to get braces, both teenagers/pre-teens and adults alike! Think about it. Most people have either been going in to work or school with everyone in masks – teeth not seen – or have done video conferencing in which the video quality is not high enough for people to notice something so small on their screens, especially in group meetings, where even faces are quite small on the screen. 99% of one’s interactions would end without anyone being the wiser regarding the braces.

How cool is that? Same deal with having a baby, I suppose. Work from home, get pregnant, produce a baby, and wait until seeing people in person after it all, and suddenly start showing off this baby that you never mentioned to anyone outside the family. Totally bizarre, sure, but also hilariously reminiscent of high end people formerly sent away on extended visits to aunts or the likes in order to conceal pregnancy. But with a super happy ending instead, of course. Mom keeps baby.

As a note, my cousin actually kind of did that. I, of course, was in favor of her saying nothing about her pregnancy; just announcing the baby itself via a fun-themed party that no one would have guessed was about a baby (especially considering that no one would have known that she was pregnant in the first place). However, she did not do that. Naturally… haha.

Anyway, so, those are my thoughts this evening. Fix teeth. Have a baby. Get super fit! Re-enter society like nothing is new. What a fun way to spend a year of shut-downs…

Post-a-day 2021

Just breathe

“I’m proud of you… everything that you do… Remember that.”

As far back as I can remember, it has been a bit difficult for me to be around very old people. If they are old and alone, that hurts me already, but , once they have reached a point that their bodies are beginning to fail them openly, it is as though a switch flips in my mind, and I suddenly struggle to breathe, to function, to focus.

My grandfather is at this point. Actually, he is much beyond it. As we talked today, I had to clear myself continuously in order to remain present with him. I have begun missing him more and more in recent years, as there has been less and less of him to see, with whom to speak and interact. I have seen him grow more and more frustrated with his own brain, his own body as a whole, as he has lost ability after ability… ones which he had is such intense abundance. Indeed, he was one of the smartest and most learned people I have ever known. And he didn’t even attend college. Nonetheless, he was the best resource we had growing up – even better than our teachers on most subjects, and more efficient and detailed in his answers than an encyclopedia. He was one of my greatest inspirations as a child and young adult, and I think so much of me longed to be most like he was. And he always made it so clear that we were loved by him. In almost very action, every phrase or look, every article or comic strip he saved for us or television program or clip he recorded for us, it was clear that he loved us.

He, every so often, would call me “Honah Lee” (from “Puff, the Magic Dragon”), and still does. He’s always played around with pronunciations of words, both of English nature and foreign (e.g. jalapeños with a hard j and firm n). So, it was an easy step to get to calling me Honah Lee. After I had learned German, and we had long since begun to use it with one another (college and onward for me), he called me one day, and said that he wanted to share what he’d figured out so far. He then sang to me “Puff, the Magin Dragon”… in German. He had done his best to translate the lyrics. I think I might actually have cried while he sang to me over the phone. There was just something about it, I was quite overwhelmed with the expression of pure delight and love in that act. Indeed, any time he used German, I always noticed how he sparked to life, as though becoming, just for a few moments or minutes, a young child, excited for the unexpected adventure that life could and would unfold. He hadn’t been allowed to use German in school as a boy – it was forbidden by the school. It was his language of home, fun, love, and self-expression. But he hadn’t used it much beyond his childhood. And, by the time I was born he had almost never used German at all; not until I had begun learning and using it with him. And so, every time we used German together, it was like I got to know him as a child, free from the many pressures and stresses that naturally arise from adulthood, from aging. I just got to be with him. And I reveled in that.

And I still do.

However, talking with him today, discussing how, though he is to turn 91 years old in a few months, he hopes yet is not sure he will make it there, it was somewhat terrifying how easy it was to be with him. He was 100% present as we spoke about that, though is isn’t always these days. He said that he has lived a wonderful life, that he is grateful, and that he is not afraid of dying (despite the fact, as he said, that people say not to say that). I merely nodded, and cried as I said that we very much would miss having him here with us. I held his hand for a bit, and we shared multiple kisses on the cheeks and I love yous and Hab’ dich lieb’s before I had to leave.

And then, just before I had to leave, he said to me, slowly and intentionally, looking me directly in the eyes, – something he has struggled to do lately – “I’m proud of you… everything that you do… Remember that.”

And I will.

And I would not be surprised if today was the last time the two of us see one another in his life. We might see one another again, but it is not very likely. He cannot seem to eat almost anything anymore, and his body is, frankly, falling apart and shutting down on him. A could be causing B, and B could be causing A, but both are contributing to the other, and the result is the same: he does not have much likelihood of living in his physical body on this Earth for much longer.

And it’s terrifying for me.

My paternal grandfather died when I was in middle school. It was expected and not. And it was difficult yet not. The same was true of my paternal grandmother. I was in college when she died, but I was still very much in the child mentality, much more so than the adult mentality. Now, I am very much more on the adult side of life than I am on the child side, and it is an entirely different kind of experience to have this happening now. I suppose that, since my maternal grandparents had survived my childhood, something in me had felt that they would be forever present in this life. They had made it to adulthood with me, so to speak, so they were here to stay.

But they aren’t. No one is, really. But they are more obviously likely not to be here for that much longer. A small part of me had felt disappointed in myself for not providing them with what feels like would have been some of the greatest gifts I could have given them. I do not have a stable career. I do not have a partner in life. I have no children. I don’t even have a pet. I know they do not need those things for me. But that is why they would be gifts.

However, when Opa said that to me today, that he is proud of me… of everything I do…, it reminded me of why those other things have always seemed to matter. They are most often expression of success in living one’s life fully. At least, they are mostly seen that way. But, when the ultimate goal is that we live life fully… that we be true to ourselves and fully self-expressed…, I cannot say that I have failed my grandparents or that I have let them down. Indeed, I have fulfilled every wish they could have for me in relation to success in my life. All the other stuff – the marriage, the children, the house, the career – are tiny details by comparison.

I do not say this lightly nor boastingly when I say that I am one of the most loving people I know. I do not do well with keeping people at the standard ‘comfortable distance’ in life. I do not chat about the weather easily. Either I do not know you at all, or I want to know you, embrace you fully. Like Ender Wiggin said, the moment I get to know you, I get to love you. And I love loving people. It is terribly difficult and stressful for me to ‘try to get to know someone’. Just be yourself with me, let go of whatever you are hiding, let me see you, be with you…. let me love you. That’s all I want from the people around me. And that’s how I want them to see me, too – see all of me now, so that you can love me for me. Let us not waste time on pleasantries and weather. Let us dive right in, and have an absolute blast together. Indeed, that is exactly why dating is so difficult for me, why I cannot seem to ‘figure out’ how to interact with this guy with whom I went on a date recently. I don’t do surface level. I do the real you, the real me. And when people avoid that, turn or step away from it, usually in fear, it is so hard for me… it only makes me want to come even closer, that I might love you even deeper. And though this might sound like I am socially awkward, I truly am not. I can be quite quiet in certain circumstances, but I probably am the only person at the party who will know everyone else by the end of it.

And I am grateful for that. So much of who I am is love. And I have no idea what comes next for me in life. (Like… genuinely, I have no idea… please, grasp that for a moment…) But I know exactly who I am stepping forward into that unknown. And I love her and I am grateful every moment for her and for all that she is and for all that she is not. And I learned today that, more than I ever saw, my Opa feels the same way about her. He knows I’m not married, not settled in any way, not career-stable or financially stable. But he knows that I am stable, and that I am ready for whatever is through that next threshold as I step forward into it. And he is proud of that, and all that it involves. He is proud of me, of who I am, of all that he knows I will create out of who I am in this life, even though he will not be here in person to see most of it with me.

I pray only that his love, his support, his guidance help me to move forward confidently and comfortably throughout the rest of my life. I am grateful for him always. And I love him dearly, deeply, truly. Thank you, God, for allowing us the opportunity to spend so much wonderful time together in this life.

In the name of the Father, of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit, Amen. Danke, Gott.

Post-a-day 2021

P.S. Frohe Ostern, folks!! Happy Easter, allen!! (Not to deny the weight of all of that ^, but it was because of Easter that I was able to spend the time with my Opa today at all. And I am grateful for that. And the Easter Egg Hunt in which I got to partake. Today really was a great day, filled with silliness and love and fun. But it also was very real one, in which, I believe, God was helping me to prepare for part of what comes next.)

Saturday morning shows?

Saturday morning. Sleep in. Relax. Restore.

And then go to the gym, right? 😛

When I first joined the gym, I rarely made it to the Saturday workout, because it was at 9am. I was not a morning person. Period. Even as a child, I missed all the best Saturday morning cartoons, because I was, as my sister said, “a sleeper”. When I joined the gym, I was also deemed by the owner to be “a nooner”. And, when I walked into that noon class each day, I had only just woken up to an alarm maybe an hour earlier. For most of my life, the opportunity to sleep in usually meant I would sleep until close to noon, if not later. And that’s even if I went to bed at ten-ish the night before. At some point last year, all that shifted, my body determined that 4:00 was a good time to awaken – and that is AM – and I went ahead and adjusted my life to fit it. Now, I usually wake up before my 4:20am alarm, I go easily and gladly to the 5:15am workout, and I go to bed around 8:30-9:00pm each night. Sure, there are days that go longer than others, but I usually end up waking up at the same time, anyway, the next morning.

That being said, nowadays, when I am considering attending the Saturday workout, I just sleep on in, and then decide when I get up if I want to go. And I can do that, because sleeping in means sleeping until roughly 6:00 or so most Saturdays. If I stay up late Friday night, and I’ve been up late other nights in the given week, too, I might even sleep until around 8:00am. But that one is more rare.

In addition, there is now a 10:00am weightlifting class, which is specifically focused on building strength and on improving aesthetics. I have been purposely aiming to increase my strength…, and my physical aesthetic lately, so… I dare say that it is a class I could appreciate greatly.

Basically, that means I love my Saturday mornings now, more than ever. But not a lot of people attend the lift class. They prefer the cardio-strong class at 9am still. I don’t mind that class, but it isn’t a good idea to do both – not at this point in my body’s path, anyway – so I have to pick one. Of course, I pick the lift one. Strength is my current weakness, after all. Who else tends to do the lift class? Take the stereotype on this one, folks: men.

And so, how did I spend my Saturday morning today? I slept in (which felt amazing), and then I went to the gym for an awesome workout, which I did while being surrounded by five ridiculously fit guys who also were workout out. And most of us were shirtless…. talk about glorious, gleaming abs and muscles... Whew!

So, can a Saturday morning get much better than that? 😛

Post-a-day 2021

^Man! I hesitated.

Like a lead balloon…

I have been weighted today by thoughts of what to do about a past situation. I was speaking with a friend about something casual, this past stuff came up in the conversation, and we paused the original conversation and tangented to this past stuff. I felt completely safe in the conversation, yet I was suddenly growing very nervous, and then stupid on behalf of my past decisions. This friend is a lawyer. Based upon the questions he began to ask me, I knew I suddenly was speaking to the lawyer at work.

And it worried me.

Today, I asked my mom for her brief thoughts on the benefits of genuinely speaking to this friend about the past stuff, intentionally discussing it with him as a lawyer, and considering whether 1) legal action could be taken, and 2) legal action would be the best thing to do. To this point, I had dismissed it all – if someone else brought it up, sure, I’d join the group. But I wasn’t going to do anything legal on my own. For many reasons, really…

However, I also never felt comfortable discussing it all, especially with a lawyer.

It is possible that it is all irrelevant now, as nothing can be done legally. However, I think it is important for me to have that conversation with the lawyer friend to find out how things stand first, and then I can go forward from there. No more wondering or worrying. At last, I can know for sure.

………

Not the lightest of material to have growing in my mind while having lunch with a guy (the same guy from Friday, actually). It was actually during lunch, when I was struggling to use my brain on any topic other than the legal one, that I determined to speak with the lawyer friend, and I went ahead and sent him a message to ask for that opportunity. That helped my brain clear a bit. When he soon afterward replied in the affirmative, I noticed an immediate physical and mental release and relief. There is still much unknown around it all, but I have steps to take now, and I know what my next one is.

It’s a bit of a bummer that I was talking in circles over lunch, though, unable to fathom what people might talk about with another person, let alone contribute much myself to the conversation. He’s a sweet guy, though, and I think he’ll forgive me as a person. I told him I had something unexpected on my mind today, and he seemed to accept that. Perhaps we shall see!

Post-a-day 2021

Ready, blow

Are there seriously people who don’t pick their noses? I don’t see how they can get through life comfortably without picking their noses. When the air is so dry, and it creates that painful layer, there is no moisture to ease it out of the nostrils by merely blowing it out. It must be scratched or grabbed. The same is true with some of the not-so-dry stuff, and the small pieces that end up fluttering but staying put when we blow.

I just don’t get it. We grow up feeling it is wrong to do, but I kind of find it rather necessary at times. Picking one’s nose ought to be an acceptable activity, even as an adult.

Granted, my now-step-ish-brother used to pick his nose with his tongue as a kid, and then eat it. I can still see him doing it. Now, that is gross. (Though, I’m not so sure it had any actual harmful effects, and it rather could potentially boost the immune system, so it might not be such a bad idea, health-wise…) However, using a nail to clean out a nostril, and then washing the nail-finger-hand involved has no reason not to be allowed in life.

I mean, why are they the perfect size, if they aren’t meant to go up one’s nose? Same with the ears, really…

Just sharing. Hashtag Nose-Picking: not just for kids anymore? 😛

Post-a-day 2021