Well, I opted for today for his first gift. It was a laptop, you see – Apple, of course, and certified refurbished, because electronics are quickly becoming a massive part of waste going into the ground (check out Back Market, y’all!) – and I wanted him to have it already for the whole week, but I didn’t want him to waste the entire workday Monday fiddling and playing with it. So, I gave it to him today, so he could start setting it up today, and vie further into it tomorrow, so it can be an asset to his days starting Monday, and not a deterrent from getting his job done. And he absolutely agreed with me on that concern. So, he got the fancy computer today, and I think he is really going to enjoy using it. Of course, I got a two-year extra accidents protection plan for him for it, in addition to the standard one-year flaw and minor things protection plan. So, that’s an extra bonus to the present, in a way. I know him too well not to get the accidental damage coverage…
Anyway, it was a good idea all around, and we had a blast taking Photo Booth photos as comic book pictures (before we had to run for a family birthday party celebration). I’m so glad it worked out so well, including the price. (Original price was $2299 for the laptop new, in mid-2018. I paid $514. And it’s in great condition.) Thank you, God, for such success today. And thank you for the many activities we accomplished together today, too. Grant us good rest tonight, please. In your name, we pray. Amen.
It was successful, by the way, the gift. When I presented it to him, he didn’t fully understand. It just looked like an odd, artsy, plant-y presentation of a rose-shaped folded piece of fabric. After the distractions of other sudden comments and conversations from passers-by departed, he finally continued opening up the rose-folded fabric… One guy commented enthusiastically, “It’s a scarf!” at which point I realized that no one had any idea what it actually was yet, and he needed to unfold it all the way. Finally, he got there, and he discovered that it was a Hawaiian shirt! And it was a very nice and pretty and purple Hawaiian shirt. He was delighted, huge smile and hug and everything. He showed it almost immediately to his friends, and they went wild, cheering. As I had said, he’d needed a Hawaiian shirt. 😛 Even though he enjoyed it greatly, he commented at one point that he thought his friends might be even more excited about it than he was – a major compliment on the present. I was thrilled and grateful that it had played out so well. My mom had done the folding and presentation setup of the shirt, cutting palm fronds and leafy, green things, and picking up moss clumps to put it all together in a beautiful presentation, like a fancy flower on display in a box. (Naturally, I never got a photo of it in good lighting, because I was so excited about gifting it…, but it is what it is, so here is the poorly lit photo I have of the “flower”.)
Separately, my mom and I went to an Islamic Art Festival today. It was filled with luminous, beautiful, heart-filled art. So much heart and light and love all around that room today. I am grateful to have been able just to be present with it all. I am further grateful for the fact that just a tiny bit of it came home with me this evening, thanks to my mom.
However, there was one piece that caught my eye early on in the day: a medium-large, mostly white painting. (I know, a white canvas sounds impressive, but it absolutely was…) It had some gold foiling on it, but looked like an otherwise white , slightly textured painting (almost oil-like with the depth and textures), with script shaped to look a bit like a whirling dervish, a Sufi. I wanted to know what it said. But mostly so that I could be clear that it had been calling to me in particular…, because it felt for the first time in my life that I wanted to – **snoot-snoot** – ‘purchase an art piece for our personal home collection’. I know it may seem to be odd wording there, but that was what it was. Like the Sophie Kinsella book “Remember Me?”, how they collected art for their fancy “loft-style living” penthouse, I wanted to start my own real collection of art today. (**Note: In the book, she had gone from having missed a bonus by a one-week hire date at her new, low-paying job to, after a car accident and resulting amnesia, being five years older, married, in a high-paying leadership job at the company, driving a Mercedes, and living in an extremely posh penthouse in London along the Thames. So, the lifestyle was absolutely foreign to her, and their art collection had particularly blown her mind simply as a concept, let alone what the art pieces were and how much they had cost [loads and loads, obviously]. Her commentary upon discovering everything in her ‘new’ wealthy life and lifestyle was comical and relatable, and her story was quite inspiring in terms of pursuing lofty dreams in life… like having a posh art collection in ‘loft-style living’. Hashtag real-life goals, right?… Anyway, moving on…)
When we returned later to speak with the artist – she hadn’t yet arrived to the festival for the day when we first were there -, I began crying during her explanation of the words on the piece and why she had done what she had for it. I couldn’t explain myself except that I was overwhelmed, literally overflowing with water. And I couldn’t seem to stop for a while. The words she was sharing through that piece were exactly what have been my guiding light lately in life, it was no wonder I was so drawn to the piece. I hadn’t even noticed initially that they were words, the energy of it was so loud and so truly in line with where I am presently moving in life.
She could tell it was positive crying, I believe. The piece itself she had set for $500, with all of the proceeds going to a charity she likes and supports. The latter part was impressive in and of itself (including what the wonderful charity does), making me want to support the artist all the more (and, of course, making me cry a bit more in gratitude for the wonderful, heart-filled good that people are still pursuing and doing in this beautiful life). The former set the piece where I believed it belonged, in a ‘true art piece’ category. She went on to tell me that she would be more than happy to work with us… on other offers of price, or, even, on a print of the piece – she’d gladly work with us on any of the options, as she wants the piece to go somewhere where it will be loved and appreciated and wanted.
So, we have all of her information, and I will be discerning over the next several hours and couple days, and I will reach out to her to let her know where I stand with everything, likely tomorrow or Tuesday. My mom said to me that this was a perfect example of where she would love to be in a life where such a purchase could be an easy, “Yes,” and a, “And here’s another $500 to go with it.” But we don’t live that kind of life. Not right now, anyway. And that is perfect for right now. Regarding what to do about the piece, I would love to have it in my home for the rest of my life. And that is a lot of money for me at present. Sure, I may have money in the bank, but, until I have reliable higher income, that money is there to keep me functioning (safely and reliably and without mental stress) in life with food and housing and transportation, etc.
I want to honor the piece for what it is. And I must honor my current financial state, and trust that God will guide me appropriately forward.
When I saw the piece, when it reached out and called me initially, my experience, though I hadn’t had the words at the time, was one of slight paralysis as the idea settled within me that, ‘I want to see that every day of my life.’ I believe fully that we are exactly where we need to be, exactly when we need to be there. And we are given exactly what we need, exactly when we need it. This piece and this wonderful artist and woman showed up today on purpose – we all fulfilled needs all around. This discernment is here for me necessarily, and right now. God, please guide me clearly forward with this art piece. I trust in you wholly. Amen.
I am still not clear of the depression, but I am significantly improved today. I got things done, and I enjoyed doing them. They went all wonky with order and finish times. And that was okay – I rolled with it with much ease and only a little strain. I know my body is dealing with a lot, and that’s okay. I haven’t been helping it with my food situation the past two-three weeks. (That’s been a bit of a bad positive feedback circle itself… and with sleep, too.) I have been improving on the sleep and the life-attitude parts especially, and am working on setting things up to improve even more, day by day. I started menstruating this afternoon, and that is a sign that my body will chill out a bit – read “loads” – in the next 12-24 hours, and I’ll not have to be physically aching to reproduce, constantly bombarded by daydreams of fit, wealthy, gorgeous men (I’m not saying that’s a bad thing to have on one’s mind, but it’d be nice not to have it shoved upon me at all times of day and night.) anymore. I am grateful for that. I always feel so crazy when my body does its last-ditch effort to reproduce… sigh
I am nervous about tomorrow. I am nervous about being seen as bad or wrong or evil. I am worried about being rejected in my human love and care. I am worried about being misunderstood. I am worried about being unacknowledged, unnoticed, ignored. I am worried about feeling like I am in trouble…. sigh….
Now, if I let all that go, now that it is acknowledged, I am delighted and excited about tomorrow! I can hardly wait to give my next gift to someone. I gave my Secret Santa gift tonight, and the person was delighted. We have a whole group text thing for all of our employees. We have a group just for the Secret Santa, too. But my person shared a photo and an adorable message in the group with everyone tonight:
YALL!!! LOOK WHAT MY SECRET SANTA DONE DID FOR MEEEE!!!!!
THANK YOU SO SO MUCH!!!!!!!!😊😊😊❤❤❤
Suffice it to say that, though I was bummed I hadn’t done a better job, it was still very well done and very well set up. And as a $10-limit Secret Santa gift, it was quite impressive. I don’t know if she knew I had given it to her – though my name was clever put on the calligraphy pages, as I have an actual calligraphy name stamp (but it is in Japanese, and stylized, AND the katakana of Hannah look like 80 in Japanese kanji…, so there’s a big chance she can’t and won’t read it) -, but I am excited at and satisfied with her excitement in the present.
Tomorrow, however, I have my fingers majorly crossed for the gift I am giving someone I care about and love dearly. You see, he kind of needs a Hawaiian shirt. Yes, need is loosely used, but somewhat applicable nonetheless. He also loves purple. Many purples don’t look great with his skin tone and eyes and hair – my mom and i have discussed this, of course. Hawaiian shirts don’t exactly come in purples that often either. So, it was a struggle not only to find a purples shirt, but to find a pretty, acceptable pattern and shade of purple, as well as a non-polyester-piece-of-junk shirt. The idea was to give him “flowers” for a performance he has. Those “flowers”, of course, would be the hibiscus flowers on the Hawaiian shirt. However, with all the purple nonsense – not that purples is nonsense, but the searching was silly -, the shirt we found is actually just mountains and clouds and palm trees… so, no flowers. Now, I am at the point of determining whether to include actual flowers now, and just wrap them in the shirt somehow, or to do something else comparable… I even considered getting white flowers, setting them in purple water, and letting them dye purple, and giving them with the shirt. But the whole point of the shirt was that it was roughly the same price as flowers would have been, so it really was instead of flowers…. So, i don’t know right now. I think I’ll go to bed and let myself be rested tomorrow morning to figure it all out.
Do you ever forget that you are actually really good at something, simply because you haven’t done it in a while? I think it happens to me rather often. Whenever I am not doing something consistently, I tend to think that I had previously overestimated my ability in it, and I the have at least a little bit of fear when it comes to doing that something again. It happened to me recently with teaching. And it has happened certainly with dancing. For the teaching, I always have a sense of imposter syndrome popping up, keeping eye in check – there’s always somewhere I need to improve and sort things out better. But, as I have now read from Adam Grant, that is actually something that tends to produce the best-quality individuals in something: When people experience the imposter syndrome but stick it out, they tend to give a better and more effective effort than all the rest. Of course, no matter how much evidence I have for that, I doubt my imposter feelings ever will go away fully.
Turn now to the dancing, which cam up for me this week. Someone asked me to help out – not lead, but just support – with a two-step dance lesson for a birthday party of a friend of his. Somehow, it felt right to agree to do the lesson, and so I did. I was nervous, and I felt like I didn’t remember anything important involved in teaching two-step. But I went, anyway, trusting that it felt right, and also trusting in the fact that this other guys was the one in charge of teaching, and I was just there to help with the demonstration side of things.
At the birthday celebration, though, in the lesson, I proved invaluable. My own knowledge surprised me. My own aptitude in teaching and, especially, in speaking up surprised me. I helped tremendously in the lesson, though, I believe, I successfully allowed for the other person to be the lead of the whole affair, even when I took over counting and starting and stopping everyone and determining the order of the patterns and moves and all.
And, you know, I had an amazing time. I had forgotten how much I love not only dancing but sharing dance… teaching it.
Because I love to teach. Period. And I especially love to teach those who want to learn what I have to offer.
It was wonderful on its own, but it also has been a wonderful reminder. When I watched a little video that somehow is still on my desktop of my computer, I was enthralled. I could hardly take my eyes off of me, though it was a group dance we all were doing. I was surprised at how good I was at the dance – a dance we had only learned right then and there, and to a song I had never heard before then. I was so chill and calm and on time and comfortable… it was beautiful.
And so, these two things – the dance lesson last night and this video today – have me wonder if it wouldn’t be extremely beneficial to the world for me to find a way to start teaching dance for real… Because I have much to offer, and I want to share it.
Sometimes, I forget that I am an amazing person. I forget that I am talented and learnèd to a spectacular degree. I forget that my existence is an absolute blessing from God, both to me and to the world at large. (I truly think we all are this, though in incredibly different ways in life. However, that is not my current point.) You see, I get a bit worn out or lost, and so get behind on things, and I end up not giving my usual best for something. I take care of my physical well-being instead of giving my all to a certain time-sensitive project. I then, of course, give a completely acceptable and, even, great result on whatever that project is. However, I know that I certainly could have done better on it, much better than I did. I had, though, prioritized something else above it – myself and my ability to continue functioning as a whole, avoiding breakdown and wear-out. If, then, somebody happens to mention almost anything about that project, I immediately feel dreadful. Oh, dear, I’ve been caught being lazy. I knew I shouldn’t have given any less than my all on it.
But then, if, at the time, my all would have gotten me home sick afterward, what benefit would it have been?
Okay, so, let’s suppose I did the work ahead of time…., when there was no clear need for me to do it at all…. That just doesn’t make sense.
Well, so, here I am, stressed that I’m not doing a good enough job teaching. I didn’t prepare things ahead of time, because I didn’t want to do so, and they had no direct use in my life. Now, I am here. I did not do as great a job as I could have done on some – many – things so far this school year. Got it. That annoys me.
And so, I sit here, feeling like crap about my teaching and myself – because I didn’t do it right, the best way. Okay, got it. However, just because I did one thing not spectacularly doesn’t make me a failure, doesn’t mean I’m failing my students. We can always do things better as a teacher – any teacher knows that. For now, I must accept the restraints I have had, or I will go nuts. I was limited on time, energy, and quick memory (It’s been a while for some of the topics, you see.), as well as the level and adaptability of my students. I chose to do things a certain way on purpose. I chose them, because I am a great teacher. Yes, I could have done a better job. That’s for next time. That’s for next class. That’s for tomorrow.
And, you know what? I’ve already set up the great stuff for tomorrow, and planned when to manage everything for the day after that and after that.
It’s okay not to be perfect at something, even though we are amazing at it. Even in dance – I am a highly trained and quite spectacular partner dancer, you see – I make mistakes. But, I think it is about how we recover from the mistakes that shows how spectacular we truly are. So, yes, I might have made some mistakes with things with classes so far this semester. Okay. Now, how do we move forward powerfully from those mistakes and from where we currently find ourselves? That is what matters most.
Huh… I don’t feel so lost in misery anymore… Yes, I’m a bit anxious about getting those things all done now that I want to do. But no, I don’t feel like I’m in trouble or have messed up horribly. Someone shall come observe my class next week, and it is going to be amazing…, because, even though I forgot it recently, I am amazing and I am an amazing teacher. God has blessed me greatly in this realm, and I’m ready to set flame to the world of my classroom. (Which, the students have already told me that I already have…, even though I had to ask them what they even meant, because I had felt like I was totally failing them as a teacher… They, however, were adamant that I had so far been the best teacher they had ever had in the subject… Pretty darn cool, huh? That’s the kind of thing I forget so often. I get lost in my head about having not done my best, and forget that even my not-best is still purty darn good.)
Thank you, God and Universe, for such a blessing in this life. Guide me to continue to be an expression of your love in the world, especially through my teaching and creativity. Amen.
I ordered several items of clothing for work last week. For whatever reason, they were all being shipped separately to my mom’s house. I was excited about them all, but bummed at all the packaging (mostly since they were coming from the same company), but figured it was due to the items being at different origins, and so was inevitable (not simply irresponsible).
Nonetheless, I found it funny that so many packages would be arriving to my mom’s house in sun quick succession. “It’ll be like Christmas!” I declared, laughing at the idea that I wouldn’t know what was what in all the packages, but that each one would be a delightful surprise (since I had selected each one intentionally for myself, but had ordered so many things that I could pretend to forget about what most of them were), as well as the fact that I would get to open them all at my mom’s house.
I shared this thought with my mom, and added that it’ll be just like Christmas when I was a kid, because I will open all my presents and start playing with them right then and there and have a merry time. She laughed and whatever-ed me, allowing my request to come over and ‘open presents’ the next week one day.
When I arrived today to ‘open my Christmas presents’ (from myself), my mom actually fussed at me for starting while she was still upstairs getting dressed. “I didn’t know you actually cared,” I said somewhat questioning.
“Yeah, I was gonna put on Christmas music while you opened everything.”
I was thrilled(!). She then put on a James Taylor Christmas album, I turned on the “fireplace”, and I showed her what I had already opened (just two things), before I preceded to open all the rest with us both in the living room together. And yes, I “played with my toys” (meaning I tried things on) there in the living room with her, and it was an extremely lovely time. I was super excited about my “presents”, and I loved sharing the experience and time with my mom. It really felt like a childhood Christmas for me. 🙂
$500 later, I expect next week will feel like childhood Christmas for me – lots of things ordered online last night and today, and all of them with a expectation of intense delight. I do not regret any of my purchases – not in the least. It is certainly more money than I typically spend… on anything. But I see great value in having all the items I purchased, they all bring me joy, and they handle my need to keep checking for things all the time (either online or in a store) anymore – I have them and it is all handled. I am both delighted at their future arrival, and relieved at having them all ordered and on the way. I am quite practical when it comes to things I buy and do not buy, so it is nice to be able to be so practical with all of this and have it handled already.
One odd part is that, likely due to the fact that they are all doing from different places, they are each being sent separately… so, not great in terms of packaging, but great in terms of t feeling even more like childhood Christmas! I won’t know what is in what. I have to wait almost a week for it all to arrive at my mom’s house, then go over there and have a present party. And I get to play with my new toys right when I open them, and forever afterward! Super excited. Happy Early Celebration to me. 😉
I don’t know what it is that has me always pining after some gorgeously awesome guy, and always wishing hat somehow, someday could he possibly ever be interested in me, want me?
I mean… grow up, right?
When am I going to let go of this little girl nonsense and be a woman about it all?
I don’t necessarily behave like a little girl out in the world – though I occasionally do – but I definitely do in my head.
If I had been being the woman I want to be way back when, I would have told him hen and there: Whenever and if ever you get over your breakup, let me know – I’d love to go out with you… no pressure intended.
But I didn’t do that.
I sopped around feeling unwanted and undesirable – thereby making me les want-able and less desirable – and depressed myself slightly by constantly considering all the ways I knew I was inadequate for him and which made it make perfect sense that he wouldn’t be interested in me.
And so here I am, months and months later, a whole new calendar year later, and he is in a relationship with someone else, and I keep having the same thoughts of inadequacy about myself, still wondering if, even in an alternate situation, he ever possibly could want to be with me, of all people…
I mean… Seriously(!), banana…. wt??
I am amazing as a human being.
People love learning just about anything from me, and I have a plethora of worldwide knowledge and experiences and oddities and silliness and wisdom… I am gorgeous both physically and on the inside – and I’m healthy and enjoy silly jokes – and am an all-round wonderful human being whose main goal is to share her talents with the world as an expression of her God-given love for Creation… I have silly quirks and I love wholly and truly and intensely; I am a natural teacher and communicator; I love myself and am grateful for my life; I take care of people, and have recently learned to start taking care of myself, too… I will not settle in life, and I aim to empower others to go for their own dreams and goals and what works for them in life… I have been through total bull and have come out clean in the other side, ready to use my experiences to help others in the world around me… and I am very smart and rather highly educated, and I am a genius dancer (not joking either)… I accept people for who they are while simultaneously hoping for and helping empower them to be the best possible versions of themselves… I tell the truth…
I am darn lovely as a human being and as a woman.
I need to get over this nonsense of always semi-subconsciously considering myself not good enough.
It isn’t like I actually say to myself, “You aren’t good enough for him,” or anything like that.
I just have all the other comments that show that I think I’m not good enough for him.
But I am good enough.
And for anyone.
I think being our highest and best selves means to be who we are meant to be…
Be who God meant you to be, and you will set the world on fire.
Teresa of Avila
And I am doing a very good job, especially in this past year or two, at being that person… and my world keeps lighting up more and more…
I have minimal money to my name right now, yet I had someone tell me tonight that I am “lit up”… and I know that I am.
I am terrified at the risk and the newness of a lot of this stuff, and also at the extreme potential I have to be my best and most beautiful and most powerful self in this current world around me… and I am lit up by it.
I don’t know right now what else I want to say about the sulky pining situation… perhaps I just needed to express that I am acknowledging its existence… for now, anyway.
Maybe, just my naming it and calling it what it is, it will disappear… that is kind of a thing in life already…
For now, though, I shall go to sleep, for I need to sleep and I want to start going to the gym again starting tomorrow (I only just got back home over the weekend and have been sick since then)…
So, goodnight fair world.
May we all recognize fully the beauty that we are and the love that we each bring to the world by our own individual existences…
My best friend asked me today about my relationship with God, for she knows I have been in a new-to-me spot of a bit of distance from God + a disconnect from religion, and that I have been somewhat flummoxed as to what to do about it all.
I thought about it, and discovered that, while nothing big has changed, – there is still this disconnect with religion and my place within it, as well as a distance from God – things have changed – I am not so worried about the religion concern, and I have actively accepted and, even, sought out God in the space around me on a regular basis.
Still nothing too big in the lines of church and religion, but I’ve had a big feeling of, when I consider how I haven’t figured out my place in it all and how I feel like something is wrong about that, I have a filling feeling of, ‘It’s okay,’ and something helps me release a deep breath inside of me.
Whenever this happens, I can tell that it is true… it is only a temporary situation, and it is okay right now, because now is not the time for me to worry about it all and figure it all out…
Instead, it keeps feeling like the time to love and to share my talents… and slowly but surely to let go and let God.
The eternal that is within us all, connects us all, is still there and always will be – I need not fret about what vocabulary to use to address it, when talking about it to others… I just need to let it be and to let myself be with it… you know?
Sometimes, we need only ask, and adventure will find us.
About a week and a half ago, I looked at my blank schedule for the next month, and felt not only a desire but a need to go somewhere… and I said it out loud, and began searching for how to make a trip happen.
Within 24 hours, a friend with whom I catch up only occasionally, and always over the phone, and who doesn’t even live in the same state, sent me a message, asking if I wanted to road trip with her to California.
And only days later, after a few changes in plans, here we are, staying in a hotel by the airport, preparing to fly to California to move her temporarily to a fancy place in SoCal, and, essentially, just adventuring and hiking and playing around.