On my mind

I recently discussed the idea of not disregarding people’s good works simply due to their faults.

For example, DSK was known as being an amazing politician who would be good for the country… he had an incident of something akin to harassing or groping – I really don’t remember, because that really wasn’t the point of any of the talk in France at the time – a chambermaid while he was visiting the US.

The world disclaimed him and wrote him off… yet he still had done amazing things for his people and his country.

DSK has been awesome, and he also did some not good works.

Doing one bad thing doesn’t make him bad always or at the core.

Fast-forward to tonight, when I found myself discovering that I had never fully evaluated the opposite, the inverse.

Just because someone does something good does not make him or her good always or at the core…

Sadly, I have had terrible, terrible people do very nice and kind and good things…

Also, I have had amazingly wonderful and good people do some really bad things…

The few bad or few good do not determine the person.

I’m not exactly sure at the moment what does make the person, other than what’s on the inside, and we just have to be able to judge that from interaction and not individual actions on the person’s part…, but I know a few acts of good or bad do not do it.

Perhaps, even, a million actions of either good or bad do not make the person.

So, then, it would have to be a ‘what’s on the inside’ kind of conversation, I think…

Yeah.

I’ve actually always felt that way about it, but I’m not sure I had ever put it into words.

Yes, our actions speak louder than words, but who we are speaks loudest, and that is in our presence – it is in our whole being, it is the energy that we each bring to the table of the game of life.

(Great game, by the way.)

So, yeah… that’s what came up strongly tonight… πŸ˜›

P.S. Yet again, I am going to bed only three and a half hours before my alarm must sound in the ‘morning’… ugh(!)…

Post-a-day 2020

Shower time(!!!)

Showers.

There are two things that have been on my mind regarding showers tonight.

Naturally, as is the case with all amazing ideas that arise in the shower, I’ve forgotten one or the other at least five times since they first came to me while I was showering half an hour ago…

Fortunately, though, I got them both back safely into my consciousness, and wrote them down before I could forget again.

The first: Shower buddies.

Whenever the idea of showering with someone is portrayed in film or television, in books, or even in conversation, it is almost exclusively approached as an erotic experience.

The same is true with physically exploring another’s body – it is never never anything but an arousing, erotic experience for both (or all) parties involved.

But why must they be so?

There is a photo – simultaneously dreadful and adorable – of me as a baby, climbing carefully into the shower to join my dad, my bum covered in you-know-what (Obviously, my mom had a sense of humor about it.)… we got to be shower buddies, sharing the space and showering simultaneously, my dad and I.

When I was older, but still a child, I had minimal space in the house that was ever granted to me entirely – that is to say, nowhere was guaranteed to be my own space for long.

This, of course, included the toilet and the shower. (Yes, I have this one terrible memory of sitting on the toilet while my sister showered, and my brother walked in and told me to scoot forward, because he needed to pee… I am proud of 7-year-old me for refusing…. but I digress…)

Whenever my sisters needed to shower, they got to shower.

If I was already preparing to shower, it was no matter, they just hopped on in with me and adjusted the water to their preferred temperature (quite hotter than I liked it, actually).

At first, they had me shower with them in order to make sure I was showering and to show me how to shower properly (I didn’t exactly love showering or bathing as a younger child).

Eventually, though, I turned into more of a coincidental affair that no one really minded, and that I actually found fun.

In one sense, I enjoyed learning how my older sisters showered and how their bodies were – though, to be fair, they already walked around in towels or half-naked or naked for an hour or so after every shower anyway – and, in another, I enjoyed the fun of sharing an event with someone and in such an intimate, one-on-one way.

It might sound a bit absurd, but it really was a fun event for me as a child.

At my mom’s house, it was only ever an exchange of space – she would finish and step out of the shower, and I would step directly into it, without turning anything off.

But, at my dad’s house, it was all too common that I would end up showering alongside at least one of my sisters… and I loved it.

Fast-forward to grown-up days.

I really would love to be able to have a shower buddy again.

Bathing at all the onsen in Japan, I learned to appreciate the human body even more than I had before, and especially to appreciate nudity not as something wrong or weird, but as something that is natural and that merely has a certain time and place in society.

I also learned to be comfortable with my own naked body… and to be comfortable with my own naked body around other people… and to be comfortable with my own body around my friends and their own naked bodies…

I guess, now that I’m really thinking about it, I actually did have showering/bathing buddies in Japan… it was silly at first, but it became rather fun for me.

‘Hey, what do you want to go do this weekend when we get together?’ a friend asks… ‘Onsen!’ was my delighted reply.

And it wasn’t so that we could go be naked together – that was always a way-after thought – but because I love having out in all the lovely baths in onsen… it’s one of my favorite pieces of Japanese culture, onsen.

I just became very comfortable with the whole showering and being naked with others – including friends – situation.

(Fun fact: I met my ukulele teacher in a bath at an onsen while on a snowboarding trip in Japan… we started lessons together a few months afterward.)

And so, I want to bring that back into my life, I guess.

Why would I love to have someone in my life?

Right now, because I want a shower buddy… πŸ˜› (I am totally cracking up right now, but I really do mean it!)

It definitely teaches cooperation (and agility), it inspires a sense of childlike silliness, and it is just a little bit crazy…, all of which I think are wonderful things to have in our lives. πŸ™‚

Also, in terms of exploring bodies physically, can we not learn to touch another’s body – say someone’s ripped abs or arms or legs, or beautifully shaped back, or even someone’s buttocks (Can you tell this one has happened to me??? Several times, actually…) – either clothed or not, with fascination and appreciation, and not have to make it an erotic affair?

Think of how a blind person might explore another’s face… it is not for erotic reasons but for getting to know the person.

Sure, a sighted person can see the other’s body, but how much do we really see?

I would love to explore my partner’s body, every bit of it, in a non-erotic sense… just as we get to know and to spend time with someone’s personality, I think it is important that we get to know someone’s bossy and spend time with it in its natural state (i.e. not aroused).

That isn’t to say that arousal need be denied always and forever – just that it has its own time and place, and isn’t always what’s called for (or best) at certain times.

So often, I hear people talk about wanting the lights to be dimmed or out when they are going to be naked in any way, even and especially around their partners, because they are ashamed or embarrassed about some or many parts of their bodies…

Would it not be better for everyone, if partners took the time to visit and explore and get to know one another’s bodies fully, in the light of day, so that they can be that much closer, more intimate and loving and accepting and appreciative of one another, more wholly so, after dark (and at all times)?

My opinion, of course, but I think it would be totally fabulous for both the individual relationships and for society at large.

……….

Okay, moving onward…

Second thing: Clothes.

One of my favorite things to do when showering is to enter the shower with clothes still on me.

It’s not something I do all the time – not by any means… it’s just something that I love, whenever I have the opportunity to do it.

When I was little/younger, I always had to do it because I had somehow gotten myself and my clothes absurdly dirty, such that the clothes could Not be put in the hamper in their present state – they needed to be rinsed off first.

Occasionally, it would be and still sometimes is because I have gotten myself caught in the cold, cold rain, and just want to get myself warm as quickly as possible… peeling the wet, gluey clothes off myself before entering the shower not only would have taken forever, but it would have frozen me even more, leaving my skin so exposed(!).

Most commonly, it was because I was in my swimsuit, and I needed to wash out the chlorine immediately, so as not to ruin they suit…, so I just got int he shower with the suit on, and then peeled it off and washed it quickly before washing myself.

These days, though, it is mostly just because I need to hand wash something that I am wearing (not necessarily a swimsuit)… a bra or underwear, sometimes socks or shorts, very occasionally a shirt or leggings or pants… and it’s sometimes because the items must be hand-washed, but most often because it is loads easier to do a quick hand wash in the shower than to do a whole load of laundry (that I may or may not have) just for the one item… also, if I need the one item soon or often, and I had only worn it just enough to be not fresh anymore, it really doesn’t need to go through such intense washing as the machine would do… a quick rinse and scrub is sufficient.

In fact, in winter, I have two of this particular shirt that I wear constantly, and so I always hand wash them in the shower.

Year-round, I wash almost all my sports bras in the shower… it started because I was required to hand wash my running bras, but continued because I have more work-out shirts than I do bras, and, as I have admitted before, I am not great with getting laundry done… I practically avoid it until I’ve been out of options for at least a few days*.

(I am getting loads better at it, actually, though I still have my moments of avoidance from time to time…)**

Anyway, I sometimes will hand wash something in the shower just because I want to experience the amazing feeling that is entering a warm shower, dressed.

If you haven’t ever tried it, naturally, I highly recommend it. πŸ˜‰

Well, those are the two shower things that have been on my mind tonight…(!)

Happy bedtime, folks! πŸ™‚

*In high school, we began “Swimsuit Day”, my best friend and I, because she loved wearing her swimsuit top better than a bra, and because I inevitably ran out of clean underwear, and didn’t necessarily notice until post-shower in the morning before school…, so I would grab a bikini bottom instead… and it became a thing that we did together for a day or two every time I needed to do laundry (obviously, I improved my awareness a bit, and so was able to give at least a day’s warning before “Swimsuit Day” was to take place… also, nobody ever really knew why we did it or how we determined when it would be, but plenty of people knew that it was “Swimsuit Day”, whenever it was… and some girlfriends actually started joining in, wearing swimsuits under their uniforms along with the two of us on “Swimsuit Day”…

**Did you lol at that unintended pun???… because I certainly did. πŸ˜›

Post-a-day 2020

What to say…

I keep thinking about what to say, and, every time I set my mind loose to ponder ideas, I find myself a minute or two later singing some old song in my head…. actually, it is fluctuating back and forth between the song in the dance video I have now watched about thirty plus times and old songs that were playing where I was hanging out tonight…

So, yeah… that keeps happening, and I keep not having anything to say, aside from song lyrics…. πŸ˜›

I keep feeling like I am daydreaming in the middle of the night(!)… haha

Post-a-day 2020

Conscious Communication and Love

I had a very interesting and, I think, empowering conversation recently.

The first part was somewhat terrifying, and the second a bit mind-blowing (in a very good way).

You see, a married man told me how he has had times of being attracted to me, of wanting to go dancing with me, spend one-on-one time with me.

That was the panic-inducing terrifying part.

He also told me that, whenever that has happened, he has looked at it and asked himself the source of the emotions – that is, why is he feeling that attraction?

Hannah is a wonderful, empowered, self-actualized, beautiful person who cares about herself and about others, and who is totally loving, he thinks, and I love being around people who are like that.

At which point he has acknowledged the emotion, the attraction, and has been able to move forward without dismissing it but without having to act on it in any way.

So, that was relieving for me.

The next thing he said, though, was the mind-blowing.

He said that he has noticed times when I seem to be very “cool” with him, and it makes him wonder if something has happened to cause me to be that way…. when he thinks about it, considers the situation, he wonders if, perhaps, She does not like that I am attracted to her, flirtatious with her – she cannot accept such adoring love, for whatever reason, so I will step back and give her some extra space.

I had not ever considered being okay with a person in a relationship being attracted to me – perhaps my religious upbringing scolded my mind enough with the concept of coveting my neighbor’s wife, but I also have experience of people not managing their emotions, their desires, and causing utterly miserable situations (especially for me)…, so I have been very anti-anyone-even-remotely-in-a-relationship being even the least bit attracted to or interested in me – and yet, here I am now, considering newly.

If the person can separate the attraction and its why’s from the typical story of, ‘I must want this person more than my partner, and therefore just pursue this person,’ perhaps it is a totally different scenario.

Kind of like how I love soft serve ice cream, and it makes me really want some when I see someone holding a fresh, massive cone of it, and I consider for that brief moment going over and stealing the cone, but then acknowledge that I don’t actually want to take the ice cream cone from him/her, because it reminds me of my love for ice cream and I really just want my own cone of it, and so I don’t go shove the person to be ground while stealing the soft serve cone…

A silly analogy, but it makes sense to me.

I also had never considers that someone’s attraction to me, married or in a relationship or not, was, in itself, a compliment to me, an acknowledgement of something wonderful within me…, a small (or large) but of love for that something within me, for me…

I had only ever considered it as wrong and bad (for the relationship guys, anyway), and had left it at that…

My mom and stepdad have always discussed gorgeous people together, attractive people together – they have always been open about it with one another… and I have always been okay with that.

I think they have, therefore, always been able to separate the desire of the moment from the ultimate desire – they see why they are attracted to someone, and discuss that with one another, as opposed to assuming immediately that they have to act outwardly on the desire…and, sometimes, they might learn from that attraction and adapt themselves to incorporate something from it into their own relationship.

I have never been opposed to flirting, as long as both parties are clear that it is only flirting – it’s actually a really great experience to me.

It’s the flirting with a goal of something happening out of the interaction that I rather dislike and that makes me uncomfortable.

And I think that that kind of flirting is what scares me… especially from married people.

Because most men in my experience have not been able to do the former, only the latter.

If, however, we consider the men who can successfully do the first, then we reach the point of what this man said to me tonight – that I am afraid of being loved in such a way that shows that someone is attracted to me.

Because of the second version of flirting, that idea is true – I am afraid of it, and I do not – have not, anyway – see it as love…, because of that second version of flirting… in the first version, however, it is a form of love.

Perhaps a silly form, but a valid form of love, nonetheless – if we didn’t love the person, we wouldn’t bother interacting, let alone being flirtatious.

I feel that I am not effectively conveying this concept, but I’ll roll with it as it is.

I was worried that a married man is attracted to me – afraid, even.

Now, knowing that he acknowledges the why‘s of his attraction and is able to bring logic to the picture, he does not act inappropriately on the attraction, and instead showers me with appropriately-intended love in appreciation of the why‘s he finds within me, I can see the possibility of being okay, even comfortable, with it.

He mentioned that I connect easily and well with just about anybody – he sees it constantly – and that, at least for all the men, they all consider at some point what it might be like to be married to me.

The thought scared me at first, but then it was actually relieving.

He said that it doesn’t last long, but they all consider it…, and I realized that I, too, do this with men… every man I cross, typically, gets thrown into the mental scenario of, “What would our life together look like?”

It doesn’t typically last more than a few seconds, and it isn’t a matter of my wanting to steal the man away from whatever relationship he may have – it is merely an analysis, a bit of mental exercise in playing pretend… and I like it when it goes well.

And it still doesn’t mean I ever act outwardly in any way with the person, because it is just a mental exercise, not a decision in which man around me to pursue.

I would not be offended for the men in my brain games…, so why just I be offended or panicked to be on theirs?

Perhaps I need not be…

Yes, perhaps…

Anyway, that’s a lot… please, feel free to be offended, but I invite you to consider something new, as I have done – it might turn out amazingly.

If it doesn’t, then you can just go back to how you’d thought before – no hard feelings. πŸ˜‰

Post-a-day 2020

We hiked!

Yay!

We hiked today, my mom and I (and a small group of dance people I don’t know very well, and my mom didn’t know at all).

It was faster than my mom and I wanted to be hiking, leaving us almost no time to look at anything other than the be-knotted ground at our feet (to keep from falling), so we didn’t exactly like that part.

But it was still a nice activity, and the few times that we did purposefully stop to look around were great.

We found the cave where Ayla must have stayed when she visited the continent…

(And a closer view… I didn’t want to get too close and bother the spirits guarding it…)

… and Rafiki’s tree(!)…

… and lots of other great bits of water and wild-life.

Totally great, right?

Right.

And then, to finish out the day, we all converged from our various activities – not everyone is up for hiking, as we all know, so there were other outdoor activities for the afternoon – to watch the sun set from a balcony at a fancy brewery that overlooks a lake.

It was beautiful.

It all was great, and it was especially lovely that this was part of a dance event – doing something outside of the dance hall / hotel / ballroom for once, and enjoying the fabulous weather together, and just being people who share a passion yet are not overtaken by it (that is, we can go do something else from time to time, and enjoy the something else together, too).

So, yeah… good day today… good weekend overall…

Despite that panicked anger that sprung up on me when I thought the beginner dancers were supposed to be considered to be of my level. πŸ˜›

(I admit that I grew very judgy and angry in those moments of misinformation…)

But, yeah, it was a good weekend, and the first time my mom tied in to a dance event’s events with me – and that was really cool. πŸ™‚

P.S. Ayla is from the Earth’s Children books, and Rafiki is from “The Lion King”.

Post-a-day 2020

Dance (dance) revolution

Today, I went to a dance workshop (a workshop!) as an attendee follower – and I enjoyed it(!).

Once I got over the panic and stress and frustration that had built up and then practically exploded when all the semi-beginner dancers seemed to be waiting to attend the Not-at-all-for-beginners workshop, and I panicked that the competition guidelines for rankings were utterly superfluous nowadays, that is… fortunately, I got over all of that (and the timing was just off from when I understood the workshop to be happening).

And then, tonight, I danced… socially… at a kind of event… for the second time this month…

Total craziness, I know.

But whew…. I did enjoy it.

I am grateful for the opportunity given to me for this dancing today and tonight.

They both reminded me that I can do this, whatever version of this I want to do in regards to dance and my future.

Yes, I can do this. πŸ™‚

Yay.

Post-a-day 2020

Germs

Tonight, my concerns about bathroom germs were solidified.

In talking with a very experienced and well-read and well-informed nurse, I learned of clear studies that established absurd levels of germage 1) being forced upward (into the air and the flusher’s face) from toilets when they are flushed, and 2) being blasted onto one’s hands and around the bathroom via high-powered air dryers (mostly because a rather high percentage of people do not wash their hands properly or thoroughly [naturally, Japan comes to mind, with the typical quick rinse of water onto the fingertips being as much as most women ever seemed to do]).

Crazy, it is.

And very unsurprising… as I mentioned, I had suspected as much.

It just reaffirms my desire to have toilets more like in Japan, where you wash your hands over the back of the toilet – dual flow toilets – as the faucet pours water into a basin that drains into the tank that holds the water in preparation for the next flush.

That way, you don’t get your dirty hands on the same surfaces where you brush your teeth.

Just saying…

These things I dream… haha πŸ˜›

P.S. I have been awake the past 19 and a half hours… Happy Valentine’s Day, y’all!

Post-a-day 2020