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 maΓ±ana.

Post-a-day 2019

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Trustworthiness

I think it is important that we either always remain alert or always remain fully willing and able to become acutely alert at any moment in life.

Sometimes, situations are perfectly fine and safe to a point, and then w ended to be alert and wary – “Proceed with caution,” our mind must tell us.

But how often are we unwilling to become alert in a situation?

If things have been fine for so long, do we become somewhat ‘immune’ to any concern that may arise, due to the fact that nothing bad has happened so far?

Do we forget that anything can change, despite something’s having been the same for as long as we can remember?

I think this is a common situation that females can run into in relationships with males… he has been reliable and totally safe so far, so long as I have known him…, and so I miss seeing those spots where he suddenly is pushing limits, and I don’t notice things fully until something really big has happened in a way I had never hoped for things to happen… possibly something very bad… Do we give the benefit of the doubt for too long sometimes?… Do we feel guilty for turning our senses on full alert, and so force ourselves to ignore them, convince ourselves that the warning bells aren’t really there, but are just in our minds?

I think it ultimately is important for us, if not to be always on alert, always to be willing to be on full alert, and in any situation.

And I don’t mean merely females, here – I mean all people.

Do you know what I mean?

Post-a-day 2019

Tough stuff

Just a curious thought that came up tonight – one which I have had many times before, thought usually only passively or, at least, without much depth of consideration – while at dinner: How are people within our society to learn to have healthy and successful and mutually satisfying physical and sexual relationships, as well as healthy relationships with alcohol?

When do we do anything real to teach our growing children and young adults (and any adults, really) this information, to give them concretes and explicit and specific information?

When do we create with them healthy relationships to the topics in the first place?

In my cave people era books, they talk about how females each had a unique ceremony, with a carefully selected older make, to give her the full experience of adult sexual intimacy…. there were people designated in different seasons who were to be guides for the growing adults to learn about sexual intimacy by voluntarily going to any of these people for the honest help and insight an older and more experienced individual could give.

I know these can easily go against various religious traditions of today…, though that does not change the fact that these were ways of helping people to build healthy sexual habits and relationships.

While avoidance has its pros, it also very much has its cons, one of which is the educational side of learning to have positive relationships to and using sexual interaction.

Do note: I’m not aiming to stir up any nonsense here – I’m just sharing the idea that came up tonight, and that I found very interesting and worth considering further.

Anyway, I see it very similarly with alcohol in the USA – we just don’t ever teach our children to have healthy relationships with alcohol, and yet we spring it on them in full power when they’re supposedly several years past being a legal adult, offering at no point any useful and practical guidance on how to approach and to have a healthy relationship with alcohol.

It doesn’t surprise me that we have so many issues regarding it, especially for the younger adults and teens… we ignore it and tell them to avoid it entirely, throwing them to the hungry lions on their 21st birthdays.

You know what I mean?

Post-a-day 2019

Quality time with Mom

“Go,” she says.

“With what?”

She points at the tv show that was paused long before she arrived, and which has yet to be referenced.

“We’re Talking,” I declare, happy, but a bit indignant.

“I’m done,” she says back, chomping on a cracker.

Uh!…”

And we both crack up into laughter at the absurdity of our conversation.

Times like these make it all worth while, visiting my mom. πŸ˜›

Post-a-day 2018

Special people

You know those people whom you find fascinating, and with whom you wish you could spend loads more time, so you could really get to know them?

Now, imagine one of those people, after having spent a short while hanging out with you and chatting with you about this and thats, saying to you that you are fascinating and that that person appreciates having gotten to spend some time with and learn a little more about you.

Feels good, doesn’t it? πŸ™‚

That was my tonight.

Post-a-day 2018

A letter to Santa and a new perspective

I wrote a letter to Santa today. Β Well, I typed it. Β I 21st Century wrote a letter to Santa. Β I felt a bit odd at first, realizing how long it had been since I had written him, as well as the fact that I always just asked for things from him, but never offered him much, and never really got to know him. Β I realize that this is Santa, but it calls to mind how I might relate to others in my life. Β Have I taken the time I normally would want to take to get to know someone, or have I learned just to ask for things, because of that someone’s understood role in my life? Β How can I turn my unintentional and unnoticed selfish into selfless in my relationships with others?

 

Post-a-day 2017

But… those are mine – the things we do for love <3

Girls and bracelets.  Seems like a rather simple topic, right?  Just girls and bracelets.  Nothing special.  Today, however, they were both special.

It was my last day going by the school where I have been based this past year.  A student had been in touch to find out this information, and so knew that I was going to be there today in the morning.  When I arrived at my (well, it’s not my former desk, but I guess it must have still been mine, since the stuff all on it was for me) desk, I was surprised by a small and adorable (because Japan) pile of wrapped gifts.  Each one had a different note and was from someone different, both teachers and students.  They all surprised me, but the one that got me ready for tears was the one on a beautiful piece of Rapunzel Disney (C) paper, with “Love” tape to attach it to the pink bag.  It read:

Dear Hannah
Present for you.

From Nono, Yuna

These were the two main trumpet players in the band at school, the two with whom I had spent bits of time here and there, just listening to them play, chatting with them, having lunch with them, taking photos with and of them, letting them paint me (yes, they painted my arms one day), giving them fun jazz (which they had never heard!) music to play, and also playing trumpet with them.  Of course, I am going to miss these two dearly.

However, I never quite expected a present from them.  Let alone the nice little Japanese mirror, charm, and coin purse (or maybe it’s for makeup, even).  They’re designed to go with the whole yukata/kimono getup, and I had never found ones to go with mine.  So it was essentially a perfect going-away present for me!  And they had no idea.  They were just being sweet and giving me something Japanese.

So, a short time later, they show up to the teachers’ room and ask for me.  I rush over to them and shove them out of the teachers’ room in a hurry – no one else needs to be part of this little celebration-slash-goodbye ordeal that’s about to go down.

With the two are a handful of other girls from the band, too.  I thank them eagerly (Is that right?  Let me check… “eager, avid, keen, anxious, athirst mean moved by a strong and urgent desire or interest. eager implies ardor and enthusiasm and sometimes impatience at delay or restraint,” says merriam-webster.com, so I accept it as appropriate in this case.), and give hugs all around.  Some embrace the american social norm, and others delight in it hesitantly, but they all hug me with joy and enthusiasm.  I will miss these guys, runs through my head as we’re all chatting and being silly together, and I know my thought is right.  I will miss them desperately, and I know they will miss me, too.  The simple fact that my successor is not even musically inclined shows the unlikelihood of their finding a replacement-ish for me, and the fact that I am leaving Japan almost guarantees that I couldn’t even begin to find a sort of replacement for all of them.

As we are wrapping things up, so that they can go eat before they have to be back at band rehearsal (to which I had been listening earlier on in the morning, secretly), I notice yet again a comment directed at my shins-ankles-feet region.  i couldn’t hear what was said, as it wasn’t said to me.  Each time it happened, the comment was almost whispered to another girl, just quietly enough that I couldn’t quite hear.  But I could see.

I wondered if they were finally noticing how I don’t shave my legs – I kind of gave up shaving… not sure where I’m going with that in life, but it seems to be the current situation.  I am always happy to talk about almost anything with the girls, despite their often being incredibly shy about most things.  So, as I usually do, I encourage the comment to come to the open.

Finally, someone gets the nerve enough to say it aloud, and I am surprised.  It was not, as I thought, anything to do with my hairy legs (it is dirty blonde, after all, so it isn’t all too noticeable in the first place, but I imagine they’re all accustomed to mine already anyway, plus they seem to love the colors in all my various hairs (since they’re not just black, like Japanese people’s)).  What was the comment regarding?  My anklet.

“She… want… it,” was the oh-so-embarrasing phrase.  And oh, what self-searching consideration I had to make all of a sudden – I was amazed at myself at my success in the matter.

And so, as we all hug once more (or twice more) and say our goodbyes, I watch with a huge smile and a chuckle, as three of the girls bounce off wearing my anklet and two bracelets, all of which I had made for myself a couple or few years ago, and all of which I absolutely love wearing.  But, hey, as I told the girls, I made those myself, so I can get some more Mookaite and Jasper stones when I get back to Houston (I might even still have some, actually), and make myself some new versions of those same bracelets and the matching anklet.  Plus, as much as those meant to me, it pales in comparison to how much each now (and likely for the rest of their lives) means to those girls.  As they say in Japanese, one of them told me that it is her “precious treasure”.  I’m not sure they could have been more grateful, even if I had made the bracelets for them specifically.

I still kind of can’t believe those girls got my bracelets and anklet off of me.  But I also love how wonderful it felt to give away a part of myself to those who so greatly longed for a bit of it.  It was more than just giving away something I had with me, because it was 1)something I valued and 2)something I made myself, for myself.  It really was giving away a part of me.  It kind of feels like I’ll be able to take care of them forever, in some small way.  I like that.

Anyway, that was about ten minutes of today.  A really, really good ten minutes.  πŸ™‚


 

Post-a-day 2017