Bed time

A pile of laundry sits on my bed. I sit on my bed. I am exhausted. And yet I am putting photos from the camera onto my computer… both of which are also on the bed.

The photos are great, and I am delighted with their outcomes from the party Saturday.

The laundry turned out great, too, smelling lovely and clean and fresh. But I don’t see myself folding it tonight… I see myself doing my stretches and reading quickly and going to bed.

Now.

Post-a-day 2020

Photo surprise

I shared a casual 40-ish photos with a friend from elementary school last week. I had gone by his daughter’s outdoor birthday party to take some photos. I wasn’t hired. I just wanted the practice, and he was open to having photos and to having me around. I was invited as s guest to the party, should I like. The photos were my own intention.

So, I went later than I had hoped to be able to go, and only took a good handful of photos, as I would call it, of the friend, his daughter, and her cousins. They weren’t the greatest I’ve done, but I had fun logging the silliness and fun of those few characters – for they certainly are characters. And the photos represented that fun and silliness quite well, I think. Plus, they were pretty photos.

Today, logging into Facebook, I saw a notification that I had been tagged in a post by that old friend. He had shared all 40-something photos, and said that I had produced them in their entireties. That was not only kind that he would tag me but flattering that he would include all of the photos. Even I would have included only the top ones for my own posting. Perhaps those were his top picks… all 49-something of them.

Whatever the case, it was really cool and was a really great experience for me to see my love and passion being appreciated and shared. Gratitude on both ends of that equation. 🙂

Post-a-day 2020

Mother-Daughter

“Do you see me ever having kids?”

Mom considers for a few moments, then answers in all honesty, “Yeah,” nodding her head, which is tilted to one side, an after-effect of consideration.

“…I mean,” I whoosh my hands downward together, going from just in front of my chest to around the tops of my lazily outstretched legs, “… having kids.”

We both smile at this as I say, “Which is different from just having kids…”

I have discussed the idea of adoption much, and my mom has participated in some of these conversations, so she knows what I mean, and why I clarified.

We share a few moments of silent chuckling before she renews her, “Yeah,” and then we smile and chuckle silently some more.

We are at my friend’s baby shower.

There have been various games and activities throughout the evening, and she and I are sitting at a table over to the side, mostly away from the current conversation and action of the party.

She is filling in one side of the paper, on which was sentence starters regarding wishes and thoughts we want to share with the baby-to-be.

I have been casually adding to the other side on the paper, on which we had done a baby name game in which we took only letters from the first names of the mother and father, and had to come up with as many names as possible.

Some of mine were just words, but I wrote them anyway, as it helped the brainstorming process along, as well as added a funny aspect to the game.

(Examples of words: Barista, Tank, Narita, Kirin, Stink, Bad)

Though we weren’t in the current action of the party, we were enjoying ourselves, and also enjoying that we got to do it together.

When the gift-opening began, we stood by where we had been sitting, so we could see over people’s heads to the gifts and my friend and her husband, but without actually having to go sit in the mix with everyone else.

Neither one of us discussed this, of course – we each just did it naturally.

I think that part of it is a matter of our being able to comment freely on things, without having to worry about offending anyone, on the likely chance that we find something silly or tacky, or that we are reminded of something absurd.

Even if we each were alone at such a party, we likely still would end up in a similar location relative to the crowd and gift-opening area.

A bit later, just as I was stepping away to go floss-brush-floss to put my aligners back in, I commented quietly to my mom, “I love how, even though no one is here to hear is, we always have a running commentary going on over here.”

Before I’d even said the word ‘commentary’, we were both already laughing silently, but heartily, and she was nodding her head almost vigorously.

But it’s true – we always have a running commentary on things.

No, we don’t say it aloud when it could offend, and no, it isn’t always bad commentary – not at all.

It is merely commentary.

Usually, though, it is commentary that sends us both into fits of giggles at least a handful of times in an evening.

Until last night, I hadn’t realized that my mom and I shared this trait.

Yes, we share many things, and we have many similarities, but I had never noticed this one until last night.

Perhaps it was due to the fact that we had enough to say that we knew at least half the room would not find funny, and so dropped to more of a whisper on several comments, bringing attention for me to the fact that we were doing it in the first place.

And mind you, we don’t have nasty comments we’re exchanging – they just aren’t always event-appropriate.

For example, some people were discussing Disney Princesses and how they have advanced in diversifying the princesses, and how they might advance next.

My friend who is pregnant loves Disney, and had commented about dressing up as a Disney Princess before.

My mom and I exchanged the idea of, ‘Guess she can’t do that right now,’ and chuckled.

‘Yeah, teen pregnancy princess just doesn’t sound right..,’ and our silent chuckles increase, tears now considering making appearances in our eyes…

And then, upon further consideration, we add, ‘Unless Disney wants to take a big step in furthering its diversity, and somehow have a young, super-huge-pregnant Princess…., do a Juno plus Disney Princess… but I don’t think they’re ready for that one yet…’

‘Not for a while…’

Yes, the ideas are absurd.

No, we are not mean-spirited with them at all.

And, since people don’t necessarily know that we are merely brainstorming and thinking of different things, and then simply sharing about them with one another, they could become quickly offended, thinking we are trying to be rude or nasty in some way.

We love Disney and Disney Princesses.

We also know lots about the ideas to progress the diversity of them, and the struggles Disney has had with complaints regarding them.

We support the movement of diversifying the Princesses, but we also love the original Princesses, too, and understand and accept the reasoning behind them all.

We also find humor in just about anything – not in a bad way, but in a genuine way… we do not demean through the humor we find, but typically find increased fondness of the topic after finding that extra tidbit of humor in it.

Anyway, I’ll not bother with the explanations anymore – I notice that I’m worried someone will be offended – I already know that my thoughts offend people, and that’s a big part of why I tend not to share them with most people.

Perhaps that’s how we discover truly the people who love us: by sharing our thoughts with them, and their still showing up in life, without judging us harshly and leaving us out to dry, so to speak.

I’ve said for years and years that judging is natural for us – it is only human.

The difference comes in when we recognize that it is only a judgment, and not necessarily the truth.

At that point, we can choose freely whether to accept the automatic judgement we have made, or whether to set it aside and be open to discovering who and what a person truly is.

When people tell me, “Don’t judge me,” just before they do or say something seemingly silly or stupid or absurd, I often let them know something akin to,

‘I’m definitely going to judge you – I can’t not – but I won’t hold it against you in any way.’

Yeah….

Anyway, I’m off to bed.

I slept half the day today… my mom woke me by knocking on my door at 9am (I’d gone to bed by 11:30pm at the latest), I was tired most of the morning and midday, and then I passed out on the sofa around 3pm, only to wake up to eat some peaches a while later, and then fall right back asleep until around 6pm… and I’m still exhausted right now, struggling to get through this.

I guess my early morning workouts are taking more out of me than I thought, and sleep really is somewhat like a gasoline tank or rechargeable battery, able to be replenished at any time down the road, but demanding refueling after so many days of running on low-power mode… if that makes sense…

Anyway, goodnight, World… hasta mañana.

Post-a-day 2019

Yearbooks

***Update on the ant bite: My bicep still rocks, but the bite swelled and split open this morning, only to close up, turn green in the middle again, and start swelling again… we’ll see how it looks in the morning, now! (And the coach’s bites did not turn green, he said, but one was hurting a lot.)***

We now return to regular programming.

There is a guy working with me who graduated high school with my youngest brother.

I pulled out the yearbook from their senior year today, and had a brief look through the senior photos.

I enjoyed how much hair this guy and my brother both had in their photos, and how they both have almost none now, and both keep their heads shaved (though my brother uses a razor, and the other guy only seems to buzz it as short as possible).

One thing I noted was that their service work locations seemed almost stereotypical for each of them…. interesting, perhaps.

Something bigger, however, was the other people I found in the yearbook.

I crossed names of people whose faces I knew not, but whose names I knew well from my brother – how fun to put faces to the names, even almost two decades after the fact.

And then I realized that I finally had the opportunity to look up and remember my brother’s best friend’s full name – I forgot his middle name a few years back, and haven’t recalled it since…. I just always thought it was fascinating, because he was the fourth with the name, so he had a “, IV” at the end of his legal name.

And I use the past tense here, because he died at the start of their sophomore year of college.

It was drinking and a bit of drugs at a party, and everyone thought he’d simply fallen asleep, but, of course, he hadn’t… I’ve always remembered most that my brother was invited to that same party, but chose to work on his absurd amount of homework, instead (thank you, UT Architecture program [not for the first time]).

And so J—– died at the party, and my brother spoke at the funeral, at the request of J—-‘s family, and he did a wonderful job.

My mom and I also attended the funeral, along with a lot of people.

After the funeral, since J—- had always said that he wanted to go out with pinwheels and fireworks, we (a handful of select people that happened to include my mom and me) went to an open land area across from a movie theatre, and set off a bunch of little rockets and a few big shebang fireworks (the pinwheels had decorated the casket) – it was a true party and celebration to send off J—- and to say goodbye together.

When I came across his name today, I was delighted – I finally have it(!).

And then I gave his photo a good look.

And it was almost terrifying as an experience, though terrifying just is not quite the right word…

It suddenly occurred to me that this was the first time I’d seen a photo of J— since around the time of the funeral – I’d only had mental visions of him since then.

It was weird to think that, u like my brother and that other guy, J— had not aged from this photo… maybe two years’ worth of aging, but that was little different from the boy who sat in the frame that is in front of me now.

These were posed senior portraits for the yearbook, and so they each are looking directly at the camera…, directly at the viewer of the photograph… J—- was no exception…

And it was spooky, knowing that those eyes, so true and almost penetrating in this photo, were no longer here, no longer existed.

And then, it had me wonder how many people in this book, this yearbook are no longer around?

And that was perhaps even spookier…

I had to move on to other things then, both in terms of productivity and in terms of an emotional desire to step away from the increasing discomfort and potential sadness of what sat before me, visually and mentally, at that moment, and so I closed the book, put it back in its place, and walked away.

I soon had tears in my eyes, and the feeling of hollowness just behind the bottom of my ribs was growing.

Now, hours later and many tasks and conversations later, I feel less afraid, and more aware of the fleeting aspect of life, the circumstances that allow us a promise of a chance at everything, and at a chance of it all going away at any moment, in a moment’s time…

On my way up to the house where I am housesitting tonight, I passed their church, where J—-‘s funeral had been… I think of him every time I pass it (though that doesn’t happen too often), because it’s the only thing I’ve ever attended there…

……

I don’t have anything insightful about this… I just wanted to share…

Post-a-day 2019

Summer days

I was just invited to a swimming party.

I realized that I was feeling a sense of anxiety, and I asked myself its source.

I discovered it was about being seen in a swimsuit (of any kind, really), which has been frustrating for me in recent recent years, due to my poor physical fitness level.

I quickly evaluated my body, to verify the reason for the concern.

I then chuckled silently, as I recalled that I clearly don’t have that same problem anymore, especially considering the fact that I almost ditched my shirt during our workout today (It was just so hot and humid today, and the tank top felt like it was holding warmth in!).

It’s a new feeling for me to be back to swimsuit ready at the drop of a hat, and to be fully comfortable with the thought of swimsuits and whoever might be around while I’m in one.

And it is a very good feeling. 🙂

Thank you, gym, and thank you, God, for getting me to this gym where beautiful magic is happening, at long last.

Post-a-day 2019

Surprise Photo Op!

“Do you happen to have your camera with you?…”

“Actually, I do… I was just saying I’m about to go get it out of the car, because I didn’t mean to leave it out there, with the heat.”

God sent the camera with me, though I’d brought it on accident, and God delivered a wonderful photo opportunity to me.

They were extremely grateful, I had loads of fun taking the pictures – turns out I really do like photographing events, as I’d always suspected (they just need to be interesting and fun events, is all).

And then… the photo turned out great already, and, with a little touching up, they now look spec-tac-ular(!).

And that is objectively so, not merely my opinion – fact-based statement, that is and was… the photos are amazing. 😛

So, I am truly beginning to feel like a genuine and good photographer, worth people’s hiring and even paying loads of money to me to produce photos for them… I’m not the best, but that’s just a yet. 😉

For now, however, I can feel and see objectively improvement in my photography as a whole and in specific areas every photo shoot.

And it feels amazing.

Thank you, God, for the steps forward on this beautiful path I now explore.

🤗🙏🐪

Post-a-day 2019

Instant (Tickle Fight) Friends

In middle school, a friend of mine introduced me to a friend of hers one day, and I somehow ended up invited to that friend’s birthday party, which was, I believe, the upcoming weekend.

I knew very little about this girl, but I got her some kind of present and showed up to the party.

At the party, I knew few people, but really, really hit it off with the birthday girl – we created our own no-hands cake-eating contest (just the two of us, while everyone watched), and, because we were having such a good time together, turned the birthday party into a birthday slumber party, having girls call their parents (or check with them as they arrived originally to pick up their daughter) to request staying and having a change of clothes delivered.

During the slumber portion of the evening, when everyone was splayed across the TV room floor in sleeping bags and pallets, and the version of “When Harry Met Sally” that has the miniature interviews with old couples interspersed through the film (and therefore adds an extra hour or more to the run-time) was playing, the birthday girl and I were snuggled right next to one another.

I remember my hair being wet still, because we had also turned the party into a swimming party earlier on, and I had swum in borrowed clothes.

Anyway, she and I were watching the movie and chatting with one another off and on, when we came to the topic of being ticklish.

Neither one of us had much of any resistance to being tickled, but we both had the desire to be able to resist the way other people we knew could – mostly people with lots of siblings.

I had (and have) many siblings, so I felt like I was missing out on this special skill that people with siblings seem to have.

And so, by reasoning that it must be a matter of having been conditioned that allowed these people to resist, we agreed to test out our own conditioning.

Therefore, dozing off during the film, we both slowly and gently ran our fingers back and forth across one another’s feet bottoms (yes, the soles), so that we each could practice deep breathing and calming ourselves in the face of being tickled.

Fast forward to today, and I can tell you that our night of tickling practice paid off – most people have no idea that I am at all ticklish (this includes, of course, all the people who actually tickle me – I’m not just saying it because people don’t try or anything).

I can’t resist forever, but I still have a solid thirty seconds to a minute or so that I can resist quite well, even when the tickling is intense.

When the acrobats were hanging with us, we all had a tickle fight (because what’s the point of giving up tickle fights amongst friends, just because we’re adults?)… almost every attempt to send me into crying giggles failed, due to my power of resistance – vive la résistance! – but our fingers grew sore from jabbing at what felt like concrete or brick walls, because the extremely muscled abdomens of the acrobats were also extremely ticklish.

(This went in many different directions… now, back to my original concept with the instant friend in middle school.)

And so, years later, I still recall Sayrah, the girl who became my instant friend that one week in middle school, just about every time I consider a no-hands food-eating contest or event or when I consider my awesome skill at resisting being tickled.

***As a quick note, I totally can be tickled like crazy, and I willingly give in to it instantly when I’m in the mood for a good and deep laughing fit, but it’s nice to be able not to have those when I really just want to be a rock of calm. 😛

Anyway, I miss having that, instant friends… we even mentioned that tonight, missing the social aspect of school, where you get to be surrounded by people of similar age and intelligence at least five days a week, and friends kind of abound… adulting is tough in that respect…

Post-a-day 2019

College

He had stayed home that night, because his program was intense – he had a lot of work to do.  He had been invited, but he didn’t go, because he did work instead.  His best friend went, though.  He wasn’t in such an intense program, and could spare the night off easily enough.  Everyone there had thought that the best friend had fallen asleep.  Perhaps he had.  Eventually, though, the combination of this and that and ecstasy had stopped the best friend’s heart and life.  But everyone thought the best friend was asleep.

He had stayed home that night, but his best friend hadn’t.

Contemplating how things could have gone differently, if he had gone to the party that night, now that is one easy way to go crazy.

So, I don’t.

Post-a-day 2018

Tasty Ice and Salt

Do you know what a salt lamp is?  Well, I just realized that I have one.  And it’s in my room.  And I’m quite excited about it all of a sudden.  And, naturally, feel a silliness rising, too.  You see, with salt lamps, just like with ice sculptures, I have an urge to lick them whenever I see them illuminated.  Okay, the illuminated part isn’t exactly the same with ice sculptures, but the licking desire is.

I remember my brothers’ dad’s wedding over a decade ago (I think that was the occasion, anyway), and how there was an ice sculpture there at the reception.  My cousin commented how she wanted to lick it – perhaps it was a swan, if I remember correctly? – when we were standing in front of it.  ‘So, lick it,’ was approximately my response.

Sure enough, she licked it.  We both did, actually, because her desire rubbed off onto me somehow.  (It actually started a trend for me, for whenever parties have ice sculptures.  I remember shocking a few classmates, when I casually passed by and licked a huge ice sculpture at a school event.)  We were still kids, but we knew well enough that it was not a normal behavior, and so were stealthy about it.  But we totally licked the ice sculpture.

Now, I have a similar situation with salt lamps.  Though, since they aren’t something that will melt away in a matter of hours, and they’ll stick around for quite some time afterward, and have been around for a while, I don’t lick them.  Usually, though, I just touch it gently with a finger or two, and then smoothly lick the salt off my fingers.

Of course, now you know about my sneaky – and somewhat weird, really – habits at parties and salt-lamp-containing spaces.  Just don’t give me away, okay?  If anything, give the ice sculpture thing a go yourself.  It’s surprisingly rewarding, the whole affair.  ;D

Post-a-day 2018