Thursday, January 29, 2009

I'm a little bit sad tonight.

My first lucky bamboo plant, around three years old, is very sick. In the hope of saving her, keeping her alive, I've had to propogate her pretty extensively. Mind you I already have two cuttings that are thriving, so God and Goddess willing, these will survive, spread new roots, and go happily into new pots.

That's a nice, comfortable "PC" way of saying I had to cut off all her shoots, and start them rooting, and cut the main stems off from the root system, and try to get them to root too. From the small little pot she started in three years ago, I'd already re-potted her once, and I noticed tonight that she seemed root bound, and that rot had set in. It was more instinct than anything that had me smell her gravel. There was a strong smell of death and decay there.

So I went to work in a fever, cutting, digging, washing, praying and lavishing the pieces of this once tall plant with Reiki. My clue should have been two days ago when I thought she looked more like a tree than a houseplant. Way, way too big for so small a pot. So, now I wait and see. And Pray. It's hard not to be impacted by this emotionally, she was, is, family to me, and I'd put her in harms way. Perhaps not deliberately, but she suffered nonetheless. So I'm a little bit sad tonight. I know all things, live, age and die, but this, well it just wasn't what I'd wanted.

I'm steeling myself with the thoughts that the cuttings will take, the stems, will sprout new roots, and I can go on from there.

Monday, January 26, 2009

Got this from a friend...

...and thought it was really good. Much of it for many of you will be common sense, but I've learned sense is seldom actually common. So I thought I'd share.

The Lotus Touts must leave your hands in 6 MINUTES. Otherwise you will get a very unpleasant surprise. This is true, even if you are not superstitious, agnostic, or otherwise faith impaired.

  1. Give people more than they expect and do it cheerfully.
  2. Marry a someone you love to talk to. As you get older, their conversational skills will be as important as any other.
  3. Don't believe all you hear, spend all you have or sleep all you want.
  4. When you say, 'I love you,' mean it.
  5. When you say, 'I'm sorry,' look the person in the eye.
  6. Be engaged at least six months before you get married.
  7. Believe in love at first sight.
  8. Never laugh at anyone's dreams. People who don't have dreams don't have much.
  9. Love deeply and passionately. You might get hurt but it's the only way to live life completely.
  10. In disagreements, fight fairly. No name calling.
  11. Don't judge people by their relatives.
  12. Talk slowly but think quickly.
  13. When someone asks you a question you don't want to answer, smile and ask, 'Why do you want to know?'
  14. Remember that great love and great achievements involve great risk.
  15. Say 'bless you' when you hear someone sneeze.
  16. When you lose, don't lose the lesson.
  17. Remember the three R's: Respect for self; Respect for others; and Responsibility for all your actions.
  18. Don't let a little dispute injure a great friendship.
  19. When you realize you've made a mistake, take immediate steps to correct it.
  20. Smile when picking up the phone. The caller will hear it in your voice
  21. Spend some time alone.
A true friend is someone who reaches for your hand and touches your heart.

Now, here's the FUN part!

Send this to at least 5 people and your life will improve.

1-4 people: Your life will improve slightly.
5-9 people: Your life will improve to your liking.
9-14 people: You will have at least 5 surprises in the next 3 weeks
15 and above: Your life will improve drastically and everything you ever dreamed of will begin to take shape.

Sunday, January 25, 2009

25 Random Things

I'd like to thank my friend Karyn for bringing this idea to my attention. Karyn did her own on her blog. Karyn you rock!

1. There are currently seven plants in my living room window.
2. I never imagined I'd wind up living in Ohio.
3. I am a survivor.
4. I am an artist.
5. I am an empath.
6. Relationships and people are more important to me than things.
7. I pay 100 dollars rent every month on a 10x10 Storage locker in New England.
8. I'm going to donate at least half the stuff in that locker to charity when I get out there to clean it out.
9. I love the ocean, and beaches, especially under a full moon.
10. I meditate.
11. I don't do it often enough.
12. I have lived a long time, in many different states of being.
13. I love the number thirteen and have no fear of it. Friday the 13th is usually a great day for me.
14. I used to take bike trips from NY to Boston, the kind of bike where I was the motor. Seriously.
15. I love being in the water. Swimming, floating, boating, whatever.
16. I love Winter Park, Florida. It's a wonderful little town to window shop, have lunch, and go to the Tiffany/Frank Lloyd Wright museum.
17. I love the Rocky Mountains, and Colorado in general.
18. I spend enormous amounts of time reading. Everything and anything under the sun.
19. I love the colors Purple, and Pink.
20. Despite everything I've been through, I once again have hope in my heart. So like the proverbial box, I shut it just in time to keep hope in.
21. Despite the violence and betrayal my late husband heaped on my weary soul, I'm once again looking forward to maybe sharing my life with someone.
22. I love working with wood, and am currently stripping the wood in my friends Yacht so that I can re-finish it.
23. I love cleaning, may sound insane, but I love taking something yukky and making it clean.
24. I'm an emotional girl, sometimes time I laugh, sometimes I cry, sometimes I do both and I don't know why.
25. I'm learning to finally put some boundaries and limits in my life, and it's THE most expensive lesson I've ever had to learn.

Sunday, January 18, 2009

Can I touch your hair?

So as I've mentioned before, Thursday nights are Movie night with the family.  Thursday nights of late have also involved a neighbor who comes over to hang out with Val and I.  My brother can only take so much estrogen all at once, so he retreats to his office.  Anyway C---- is amazing, outgoing, exceptionally bright and mature for her age.  She's thirteen going on forty and in many ways reminds me of me when I was that age.

Usually I'm just really relaxed and laid back on Thursday nights. My hair is so often in a ponytail that C---- remarked a couple of weeks ago that she'd never seen me with my hair down. Tonight I was running late and drove up to the house with my hair up in a towel. My poor namesake doesn't deal well with hats on people, so I Walked with my hair up in a purple "Turbie twist" towel, and I didn't get the warm welcome from him I usually do. Normally, I walk in, and he lights up with a big smile and starts laughing, clapping and doing a little dance. It's such a shame he doesn't like me... Anyway, Thursday, with my hair up, he took one look at me and started crying. Mind you two hours earlier we were on the boat playing. Realizing the problem, I took my hair down, it was mostly dry anyway, fluffed and flipped it back into place. I didn't really think much about it from there. Sam was suddenly happy to see me and showed it too. C---- on the other hand just looked at me wide eyed and said:

"Oh my God, your hair is so shiny and, well amazing! I wish I could just flip and fluff like that! It looks so soft, can I touch it?"

I was a little surprised and said sure, if you want to. She then came over and proceeded to pet my hair. I mean seriously just petting it, running her fingers through it having a good time... I'm kinda used to it by now, I run into hair envy surprisingly often. Just not often is the whole petting it part. She was just awed by it, because it's "amazingly soft" as well as good looking, and it's nice and long. The kind of hair my younger sister always dreamed of having.

When I was a kid, my younger sister said my hair was wasted on me, because it was perfect girl hair and I'd never grow it long enough to do it justice. Her hair was coarse, too thick (according to her) and too curly. She wanted long wavy hair that was soft, fine, and shiny. I honestly wish she'd lived long enough, and been healthy enough to really meet her sister.

Needless to say, we had this whole conversation about haircare, styling products (or the lack thereof) and how to get your hair soft. From there we went into shaving legs, and other such topics. C----'s Mom died a whole bunch of years back, so she doesn't have any real female role models in her life. Val and I got elected it would seem. It's kinda cool being a big sister of sorts, though technically I'm more than old enough be her Mom.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Old ways and "obsolete" technology.

When the going gets tough, the tough fall back on what works...

I am once again at a point in my life that I'm stripping again. Yes, behind my pretty face is a stripper with a heart of gold and a body with plenty of go left in it. So I'm stripping again. Back when I was in school I turned to stripping, and for a while I was making awesome money. Yup, stripping! Now at 44 it's good to now I still have it in me to take it all off...

Hey, hold on there a minute, where did YOUR mind go?

I'm spending the night on my brother's yatch, so all I have to blog with is my blackberry. It's easier than driving the 32 miles back to my house only to then have to drive out here again tomorrow. Cause I'm stripping at the Marina. And while honestly I'd love it if I were doing the kind of stripping you were thinking of because I love to dance, it's not that kind of stripping. My brother's yatch is all stained and varnished wood. It's also thirty plus years old and looks it. People don't like this kind of stripping anymore, so it's hard to find folks who do it these days. When you do find someone to do it, they want a fortune.

When I was a wee one, I followed my granparnts around like a puppy watching everything they did and learning. My granfathers both worked in wood with their hands. One made things and just painted them, the other made furniture and put serious old world finishes on them. Handrubbed oil and so forth. He also refinished wood of any kind and shape. Stripping the old finishes off and then putting new ones on... Even floors.

So all the Mahogany on my Brother's boat? Yup, I'm stripping it and going to refinish
it when I'm done! See? I'm a stripper! And just as proud as if I were taking off my clothes!

So, now, be honest, how many thought I meant the other kind and stripping? It's okay if your mind went there, you can tell me. Frankly while not everyone thinks so, I think sexwork of all kinds between consenting adults is just fine.

In other news, the day after my seven mile, 24 minute ride I felt . . . Wonderful! Still no pain afterwards, but I'm way more limber and flexible than I was! I'm really digging it, cause getting down to sit onthe floor and back up is WAY easier and no longer painful. Circulation has improved pretty significantly as well. No pain, but plenty of gain! So I'm looking forward to doing more. As for upper body, no worries, I'm getting plenty of a work out with the power sanders taking off the top layers of 30 year old varnish. I hope you had as much fun reading this as I did writing it.

Monday, January 12, 2009

My Mom was so smart . . .

. . . considering how young she was.

I'm five years older right now than my Mom was when she died, which is such a strange thing to think of, let alone say. When I was growing up, years before she left the physical plane, she did her best to impart to me, wisdom that was well beyond her years. Since my Mom was one of the most important people in my life, and because I wanted to grow up to be just like her, I took what she said seriously. I lost her way too young, and it took me so long to get where I am, that I still don't feel as old and wise as my Mom always seemed to me when I was little. Even now that I'm five years older than she was when I lost her.

My generally bright and sunny disposition I got from her. Her optimism and belief that deep down, people are good, and that magic is alive and well in the 'verse I've taken with me. For her the fact that magic was real and worked, wasn't even a question, and while it was never talked about openly, it sure was used.

So she was smart, cool, and the best part of my youth.

In other news, I went back to the "Y" today and did 7 miles in 24 Minutes. Today, I felt like I accomplished something because I could feel it this time. Then again I found out the machine goes up to at least level 13, which made me work a bit harder. Usually the day after I work out, I feel it as my muscles adjust, after the last time I didn't feel anything, even the day after. So hopefully, tomorrow I'll feel it too. It'll mean I'm doing something right. Or at least something that's challenging my muscles. Tune in tomorrow for an update.

Saturday, January 10, 2009

Just being.

"I think being a woman is like being Irish... Everyone says you're important and nice, but you take second place all the time."
— Iris Murdoch

"Just my luck, I was born an Irish woman..."
— Me.

Today was a pretty good day all in all. I found out for example that despite my feeling at times decrepit and old, I'm not as bad off as I thought. How so you ask? My new health plan comes with free YMCA membership. Pools, Sauna, Gym, everything. Today I managed to convince myself to actually use it. I figured I'd start with something simple and fairly easy, so I sat down on the stationary bike and blinked. It had a cockpit display that looked harder to fly than a Cessna, and I actually flew one of those once. Turns out, it was actually very easy to use. So following Preventions recommendation I started out really light on level one and quickly found myself a bit frustrated. I was hardly moving. Level two, then three, four, five and so on until I started feeling some resistance at level eight. I don't know how many levels it has, but I found the whole thing slightly amusing. Twenty years since I've done any serious biking and here I am at level eight (whatever that means) and cycling along nice and steady.

I should have brought a book. After 20 minutes and six miles later I was bored. Just sitting there pedaling away, and boredom, not fatigue got to me. So, I wandered back to the locker room, changed and left. As I was driving home, it started to sink in how much I missed cycling. How good I felt afterward, that rush of feel good drugs the body makes. Years ago, like twenty, maybe a few more than that, I rode everyday. I'd get up in the morning, ride ten miles or more, go about my day, and then ride another ten or so at the end of the day. On weekends I'd do some serious rides, like from Danbury, Connecticut to Boston, Massachusetts. I wish I could say I was joking, but no, it was around 300 miles round trip and I usually took about 14 hours one way to make the trip, which of course gave me time to hang out in Boston. Plus in those days I was crazy, pure, unquestionable, unbiased, nuts. I'd get on the highway and take the highway to Boston. It was shorter and more direct, plus I'd do most of it in the dark so I wouldn't get in trouble. Yeah, like I said, crazy.

Anyway, that was, over twenty years ago, and I had no right to expect to do six miles of decent riding in twenty minutes averaging about twelve miles an hour. Mind you I'm not complaining, not hardly, it also bodes well for getting into shape faster and easier than I thought, and dropping the weight I want, and need to lose. I'm looking forward to spending more time there, and swimming! Multiple indoor pools! Awesome!

Other than that I did a bunch of running around, getting things done, nothing earth shaking going on. I came home to find a bunch of stuff I'd ordered had come in, and the warranty replacement for the aerobed I'd ordered had also come in. This way, when Ellie comes out to visit at the end of the month, she'll have a comfortable bed to sleep on., not just a sleeping bag on the floor. Probably one of those things I'd ordered that thrilled me most where the Cubic Zirconia earrings I got at Amazon. Dirt cheap, I mean they are after all just carbon compressed down into diamonds right? "Real" diamonds are just too expensive to bother with these days, at least given the rest of my very relaxed, country girl look. Fact is however I love the sparkle, some pure "shiny" as Kaylee on Firefly would say, a nice counterpoint to my laid back country girl look. It's a nice look. Shiny in the ears, proper manicure of nicely buffed, clear coated natural nails, and a hint of lip gloss says there is more to this woman than a simple country girl look.

It was an overall simple laid back day, finished with some chicken, red and yellow peppers sauteed in Garlic and EVOO over angel hair pasta and a glass of iced green tea. Clean, clear, and light but filling and oh so very pleasing.

Probably most excitement I had all day is talking to my sister who's been in the hospital dealing with some health issues all week. She sounds oh so much better it did my heart good to hear her voice, with a calm she hasn't had in a while. A long while. She's need to do this for a good couple of years, well since I was out there two years ago, but couldn't bring herself to do it. I think this is going to be a turning point for her life, and that makes me very happy.

One amusing part was I decided to spoil myself with a movie night by myself. Some incense, scented candles, soft lights and a good movie with my diner. So I stopped into my local Blockbuster to get a movie. Mind you I'd not been there in about two months for various reasons and when I walked up to the counter I got a smile from Shawn. He scanned my movie, and I said "Oh, I'm sorry you need my card" and reached into my purse for my wallet.

"No problem Ms. Q, I've got it, I just looked you up in the computer."

I was kinda stunned. "Wow, that's so cool, you remember my name?" I said with surprise on my face.

"Yeah, Samantha Q. Easy to remember your name, every time you're in here you smile and make me feel like I'm not just some idiot behind the counter taking your money. You remember my name when you're in, why shouldn't I remember yours?"

"Well it's easy to remember your name, you're the only Shawn here" I replied "but I'm just one of how many thousands of customers that come through here every week? And please, no need to be formal, you can call me Sam or Samantha. Keep calling Ms. Q and I'll have to start calling my Mr."

It was very cool, and proved once again there's nothing better than being nice to people in stores and such. They don't like their jobs any more than the rest of us most of the time, and they have plenty of twits to deal with. So, I'm always nice, I make a point of it. It is for me, every bit as good as leaving a good tip for good service. I still leave a good tip for good service when it's warranted, because that's important too.

(In most states, employers GET AROUND minimum wage, by making tips part of the pay. Frankly that's just sleazy in my opinion. In Jersey for example, employers in restaurants get away with "paying" waitresses TWO DOLLARS an hour because it's expected they get tip money. So next time you decide NOT to tip because someone's just doing their job like you have to, remember, tips are PART of their job. If you don't leave a reasonable tip, you're taking money out of their pockets and telling them they aren't worth anything. So remember to tip your waitress, PLEASE?" The only time it's acceptable nor to tip, or to leave a small tip, is if the waitperson did a terrible job. Okay, sorry about that, lecture over. It's just something I'm passionate about. If you can afford to "reward yourself with a night out at a decent restaurant with waitstaff, you can afford a decent tip. If you can't afford the tip, well you probably shouldn't be eating out. But that's just my opinion.)

All in all, a completely remarkable day because it was unremarkable. Yes, I started this journey in a hostile and unforgiving land where I didn't know the rules, let alone understand what thinking there was behind them. I didn't belong anywhere, I was feared and respected because I'd built this shell of power and attitude. I was then, truly every bit a stranger in a strange land. Years of isolation and distance from everything wore on me, and suddenly the expectations and rules outside me, really meant nothing but ongoing pain and trauma. Every day was a fight, this epic battle between what was expected and my own nature. Five years ago I decided I could take no more and set out to claim my birthright, a journey I knew not how long it would take, if I'd even live to see my destination, let alone find something like peace, growth, progress, belonging and inclusion.

Now, I'm back home, where I should have been from day one, years of impossible dreams and yearning for freedom have blurred into everyday life. The impossible then is what just is now. And you know, I really like it. Now I have time to work on the long standing ghosts of a life tortured and move on, but the start of it all, the most horrific and painful part of my life has been pretty much corrected. Sure there is one last bit, the "cherry" so to speak on top of the cake I need to get finished, but for now, I'm "Just being!" It can hold me for a little while as I focus on other things. How I'll afford to finish, I know not, but I have a reason to be hopeful now, because I've come this far across and terrible desert.

I'd like to thank Karyn, Veronique and Lori for being the genesis of the title and concept for this post. I wanted to share this wholly unremarkable day so that folks who are walking a similar path know that the destination can, in fact, be reached. If I can do it, anyone can. It's not about gender, sex, parts, clothes, hair, nails, shiny or anything else. It IS in fact about freedom. Honesty with the one person you can least afford to lie to in life, yourself. No, I'm not saying it's easy, or will happen overnight like I dreamed of as a child. But it can happen, it will happen, you'll reach a point of ordinary, of real life, of just being . . .

More than that, who can ask for eh?

If you can't be honest with yourself, and live your life for you, you really aren't doing anyone else any real favors.

Just being all in all was, and is, easier than what my life used to be.

Friday, January 09, 2009

Meet Joe Black.

Well I've met him more than once over the many, many centuries I've lived. Each time he's taken someone I love, from me, or taken me from them. Last night for Movie night we watched it again. My brother and I had both seen it, though in some ways it was my first time as a whole, real, human being not fighting an internal and external war on multiple fronts.

It was sobering and funny, heart wrenching and profound. And it brought back an interesting and amusing memory. When in the last few minutes of the film Susan is dancing with her father, their last dance together in this life, I was reminded of the confusion and weirdness of my wedding, and some of the things that came after it.

Earl had insisted that we take dance classes as part of getting ready for the wedding, and frankly I was all for it. I thought it would be fun. He looked at it like a military operation. I loved dancing, he wanted us to not look like idiots. We'd danced (mostly slow dance, really only slow dance [waltz]) at some events we'd attended, but he wanted more. He wanted us to look as good as his parents always do when they dance. Mind you, they were in their 60's and had been doing it together for more than fourty years. I wanted nothing more than to learn some formal dance moves, and even learn to tango well. There is something so romantic and deep about the Tango, so full of feeling, of passion, the formal grace tempered by a'more. Who WOULDN'T want to learn to Tango? Anyway I seriously doubted we'd be able to take enough classes or get in enough practice time before the wedding. Despite taking a year to plan. Plus Earl was so wrapped up in his own inner conflict and nature that I doubted a year would be enough to get past both our issues.

A year or so after we were married, he found a seven week dance course about half an hour from our house. It was in Haverill, and was supposed to be seven dances in seven days. Fox trot, swing, samba and I forget what all else. Earl decided this was it, we could do this, and then look as good as his folks cutting a rug at the next black tie thing we had to go to. Be it my work, or his family, we'd know more than enough to look great. Yeah, if only.

First day we started to have problems. It was his natural inclination to lead, and mine to follow. Makes a certain amount of sense right? Guy leads, Girl follows and I had no problem with that at all . . .

. . . except, he did. He was so obsessed with keeping our mutual secrets, well, secret, that I took no end to the amount of abuse. Despite him looking down his nose at me, my history, and so forth, I picked up the steps fairly well. So much so that when Earl grabbed the instructor and insisted she try to teach me how to do it "right" we started with her leading, to show me how it was done. She thought I was doing great, except of course when it was my turn to lead. Didn't quite go so well. I said I can follow like a train, but not lead, I'd need years of practice, plus S[HE] is always trying to lead so I just follow, it's easier that way. I suggested the instructor try to dance with Earl and lead. That didn't go so well. Actually not well at all. In fact very badly.

We quit after four classes because the instructor looked at Earl and said, "Look if you're good at leading, and s[He's] good at following, just do it that way. Your spouse is one of the most graceful people I've ever met, and if you want to lead, he'll make you both look amazing. Pick who leads and get on with it."

Well that just pissed him off. As we were . . . as HE was driving us home in HIS truck, he was just seething. "Most graceful person my ass. Aren't you pissed? She said you were graceful?!?!? I'd be livid!!!"

"Honey" I said quietly, "you're livid now, what's your point?"

(Him shouting) "You. Are. The. Man. That's what the world SEES. You ARE supposed to look like someone having a seizure, or being electrocuted. NOT! GRACEFUL! For once in your damn life can't you just be the man?"

(Me, very quietly, deeply hurt) "Welcome to the hell that is MY life. I cannot believe YOU of all people just said that. You. Shoe's one the other foot, you keep trying to lead and so of course I follow, it's okay for me. Plus there have been graceful men before, ever seen Fred Estaire? Gene Kelly? Or Gregory Hines for example? Baryshnikov? For some stupid reason I enjoy dancing with you, being close, held, touched. I'd follow you right into hell if you lead me there . . . oh, wait, we're there now, least I am.

I don't care what I look like when I'm dancing, I've never had a problem with it before, it's only now that you insist I dance like a man. Like someone I'm not, could never really be, never got the manual for. When I dance I like to connect to the person I'm dancing with, the energy, the music and let it all flow into, through me, out of me. I like the connection, the feeling, that graceful flow. The little signals my partner gives me as we float across the floor, two become one for a short time. That think we do when we have whole conversation with our eyes, or finish each others thoughts like we've been together longer than you folks. I want that physically when we dance. We've had it when we slow dance, and you always lead there. I'm expressing my love, with you, when we are dancing.

For me, dancing is about love. The grace is just a part of who I am, I've ALWAYS been graceful. My Karate teacher said I should be doing ballet. I've had lots of people say that I make CATS feel ashamed because I'm so graceful. It's not something I do on purpose to piss you off you know."

(Him interupting) "You look like a FAG! That's not attractive, trust me."

By now, I'm beyond words and crying as he spends the rest of the ride home berating me.

So as I was watching Bill Paris and his daughter Susan dancing I realized how badly I'd wanted THAT from Earl. To just dance, and feel it. To be held, touched, connect in that state of oneness that dancing can be between two people who care about each other. It hurt. Realizing just how much Earl and his obsession with the act had destroyed, took from me before I even had a chance to really miss it.

I'd have been happy to learn how to lead if he'd actually follow, just for the chance to really dance. The sad thing is I had a little bit of it, just a tease, before that horrible intro dance class, he and I had danced. Parties, weddings, family events and such, even our own wedding. He danced, I followed and I loved it, and him. There weren't any words, none were needed. No labels, none fit. We just danced. Nothing fancy, was just a slow waltz.

For me it was like water to a woman dying of thirst, food for someone starving to death. That chance to be held by him, touched, to flow. People always complemented us, how well we danced, how great we looked together and so on. Not one said I looked too graceful (is there such a thing?) or that I was some kind of freak for following instead of leading. They just though we looked amazing.

And I, Felt, Amazing.

So that was hard. Brought back all sorts of memories. There was also the parts of the movie, the subtext, the feeling that my brother totally missed. It was all written there on Susan's face. Falling in serious like with one man, in love with another in the same body, and having to deal with HIM (Joe Black) leaving and taking her adored Dad with her. Losing those too people so dear to her, that she'd opened up to, become part of, and them be part of her, finally really loving. She was in love with Joe Black. And he left. She KNEW he was gone, her Dad was dead, when the guy from the coffee shop came walking back across that bridge. She KNEW it wasn't her Joe. Mark argued the point with me some and I let it go. One of the last things she said in the movie to Brad Pitt (Coffee shop guy/Joe Black) was "I wish you could have met my father . . ."

And then they walked back down to the party. I like to think in the end she was okay with her "consolation prize" and managed to fall in love with coffee shop guy and build a future. I don't know that I'd be able to do that. To be haunted by the way Joe had loved me, and to have someone physically identicle in everyway reminding me of what I'd lost? To look into those eyes, HIS eyes, JOE'S eyes and see coffee shop guy staring back.


So I dream, that one day I'll be healed enough, to try to open my heart up to someone, and build a relationship, love even. Whoever it is has to be ready, willing and able to dance with me and lead, cause I don't and I don't want the fight of trying to lead, and I'd look pretty stupid trying to lead. A mean a girl? Lead? Yeah, I know. Earl had to deal with that, except he WANTED to lead. So fine. Someone to hold me, touch me, connect with me in a loving and gentle way, stand back to back against the world and be there for each other. Someone patient, gentle, understanding, loving, capable of gently touching me, heart, mind, and soul before he ever does physically. And someone who may, or may never have sex with me. Not because I don't have wants or needs, but because I'm so terrified of being touched again those wants and needs sometimes make me sick to my stomach. I'd much prefer death to being hurt again like Earl hurt me. Someone whose parents are long since dead. I cannot, will not handle another Momma's boy. Someone who will not know my SSN until I'm dead.


Okay, well this is one of my rare, dark, heavy pieces. I'm sorry. But it's what I'm feeling in the aftermath of watching Meet Joe Black for the first time as ME. Despite now being me for years now. Inside and Out one person. A deep, feeling, traumatized woman who understands and feels maybe way more than she should. A woman who, sometimes unfortunately so, feels what other people are feeling as if it were her own feelings. So I don't just watch movies like "Meet Joe Black" I feel them as if I'm living them myself. I'm an empath. Often it's an amazing blessing, sometimes it's a curse.

Wednesday, January 07, 2009

I got my wings back!

So, in the spirit of Ange not being the only one sharing her dreams, he's the one I had had that kinda peeked my curiosity. I should preface this by saying I'm a big fan of the TV show Charmed. I've seen every episode of every season at least several times. This dream took place with the Halliwell sisters in one of my favorite cities in the world, San Fransisco, which is where they are from. For people who know, it takes place later in the series, sometime before everyone is married. Piper is, but Phoebe and Paige aren't.

So Piper, Paige and I are out running errands, having some dinner and just generally relaxing. We're having a quite evening, people watching and shopping. Leo's at home with the boys, and Phoebe is working late AGAIN! Which sucks for me, because for some reason in all the dreams I've had with the sister's in them, Pheobe and I are dating. Yeah. Who knew? We'd kept it a secret for a long time so as not to hurt her position as "Ask Phoebe" but when the news did get out, readership only went up. For a while we were as hot news in the city as Lindsy Loham and Samantha Ronson. So anyway, she's working late. :-o(

We pull into a gas station in Piper's Jeep to put some gas in when a woman in a pickup truck pulls in and is frantic, her husband is sick or injured, and she needs to get to the nearest hospital. While this is going on some goons come down the street in a black Mercedes with the radio up loud and park across the street. What happens next was horribly unsettling, they started shooting at us! One of the cars parked there explodes and they keep shooting. I was leaning into the passenger side of the truck looking at the husband and he didn't look good at all. I don't know what came over me, but I really didn't like being shot at, and there was no way I could carry him. I held him in my arms and I could feel the energy coursing through me and knew we'd get out of this okay. I hollered to Paige "Take the girls to the Manor we'll be right behind you." She started to argue and I just orbed knowing she'd get the message. The five of us orbed into the Manor with the girls right behind me. Pheobe happened to come walking in as we were orbing in, and suddenly six pair of very confused eyes were fixed on me.

Paige spoke up first "Missy you have some serious explaining to do!" and from Pheobe "Why did that look like TWO orbs, not one?!?" Piper chipped in with "Oh, I don't know, why don't you ask your girlfriend because she left BEFORE us!"

Of course the husband and wife were freaking out because well he was fine, neither of them had been shot, and we were nowhere near the gas station. So everyone was talking at once as Leo came running down the stairs. "What happened? I thought you were having a quite night?" At which point the sisters in one voice said "Sam just healed this man and orbed both of them here by herself. Since when is there another lighter around here?"

Leo looked just as confused as the girls. "She couldn't, she's not a lighter . . ."

So everyone is looking at me like I have four heads and I looked at the husband and wife and said "Why don't you go into the kitchen and help yourself, we'll be right in after a brief family conference." When we were alone I shrugged and said "I don't know, the elders gave me back my wings. Paige's Dad knows me. I fell a while back on purpose, and when we got attacked and I couldn't move this guy on my own I felt it all come back to me in a rush." So everyone's looking at Paige who hollers "Sam!?" and I couldn't resist saying "What? I'm right here?" She tries that a couple more times and then frowns and hollers "DAD!!!"

He orbs in looking concerned "What up? Are you okay?" Paige looks at him and says "Dad do you know her?!?" pointing at me.

He Deadpans "Of Course, that's Sam, Pheobe's girlfriend, why?"

I said "It's okay Sam, they gave me back my wings, and now the whole family knows. Do you have any memory dust with you for the two people in the Kitchen? We're going to need it."

I won't bore you with the rest of it. For those who don't know, "White Lighters" are the people who help and guide witches, capable of orbing from place to place, and healing even near fatal injuries. They are the "Charmed" version of Angels. In all my dreams in that part of time/space I've been a fallen Lighter, who gave up her wings and became fully mortal again. I really hadn't felt the need to share that with the family because I figured it wasn't like I was going to go back to being a lighter on purpose. Paige's Dad knew me, but he was keeping my little secret. But the cool part is I got my wings back. I'm not really sure what it means, and I'm not going to go borrowing trouble right now, but my Reiki has gotten dramatically stronger since that night. Amazingly, stronger. That makes me very happy, but it too was as unexpected as the dream.

Monday, January 05, 2009

Well it's official now . . .

I over did things today but got a whole lot done. Problem now of course is that my fibro has flared up and I feel like I've been run over by one of the many trains that go lumbering through behind my house.

What I got done? Finally re-registered Jumper One (Jo for short) and put the Ohio plates on her. Frankly it's just wrong. My Colorado plates went well with Jo's color, and tickled my artist's temperament. They complimented Jo, rather than a big, ugly, garish, "look at me I don't belong here" kind of plate that I have now. Red, White, Blue and Ugly as a long summer's day. It's just wrong I tell you!

So anyway, back to what I got done. Did all the running around to have the car done, which entailed a stop at a local dealership to have them look at my existing title, and the vin number and confirm that yes, that was the car. $3.50 later I was on my way to the title office where I found out I could have done it there, by them, and paid the $3.50 without going to a dealership. But they don't tell you this on the website. So the title office wanted $8.50 to take my old title, and give me a new one for Ohio. Thankfully I only had to go right next door to get my plates. Another $35.25 later I had the aforementioned ugly, garish plates in hand and could have been done for the day. I'd not thought far enough ahead to remember to bring a screw driver with me. So, I figured I'd get on the highway, head back to the barn and change the plates there.

Not so much, rush hour was starting, so I snapped off a smart about face to go home the back way. When I say a smart about face, I do mean smart. This car for a four door has a turning radius like a motorcycle. On a two lane road with no shoulder I can bring it about with room to spare. One of the many things I love about this improbable, impossible little car. That and 43 mpg doing 80 across the plains of east CO and KS. Mind you the speed limit there is 75 and I was doing 80 in something like self defense, since people were passing me like I was standing still. My last trip from CO to here, I got nailed by the state patrol. "Ma'am is there a problem? I clocked you doing 80."

"I'm sorry officer, please don't write me a ticket, I promise I'd slow down!"

"Slow down?!? Ma'am do you know why I pulled you over?"

"Well yeah, because I was doing 80, I'm really sorry, but didn't you see all the people passing me? They were going so much faster that I was."

"Yes Ma'am, that's why I pulled you over, you really need to be going faster. I'll let you off with a warning this time, but really, for your own safety you really need to drive road speed or get off the highway. So please, drive a little faster, you should be doing 85-90 through here or you'll get hit. If you have a mechanical reason you can't go faster, put the four ways on, or take the surface streets, especially when it gets dark."

Dumbfounded I promised I'd go faster and he let me off with a warning. Anyway, this car is great on gas on the highway.

So as I was driving home, it dawned on me that I'd never heard back for the gym, and I thought I'd stop there and find out what the problem was. Oh my, what an experience. Turns out the girl I'd talked to that day was the night person and didn't know how everything worked, so I'd gotten filed away. Turns out that yeah, my health insurance comes with gym membership. Actually the whole thing, gym, pools, classes, sauna, showers and so forth. Indoor pools, as in more than one. Nothing makes me happier than being in the water, so it really appeals to me to have access to a pool. My insurance agent said all I had to do was show them my card and I'd be good to go for free. That was months ago that I stopped in. So there I was in a madhouse. Phones ringing like mad, people streaming in and out in droves and only one person at the desk expected to do everything. Debbie was apologizing to me, and I felt bad for her, she said oh, yes, you do get full membership, no-one has put you into the computer yet. I waited, thank good I could meditate because I didn't have any tranquilizers with me. So I waited, and waited some more, and more after that. It was . . .

. . . stressful. I can't imagine what it was like for poor Debbie. No, wait, I can. I used to work for one of the largest brokerages in the world, I had three different phones on my desk, and quite often they were all ringing for multiple lines at the same time. People always at my door wanting things, needing things, and so on. Looking back I keep asking myself "WHAT WERE you thinking!?!?!?"

She finally said that I could go workout if I wanted and she'd have everything entered into the computer and my new ID when she was done. I thanked her and said well I really hadn't prepared to come and work out, just wanted to stop in and make sure I could. She promised she'd get it all entered in and have my ID ready tomorrow if I wanted to come back. So, I came home, quite exhausted, changed the plates and went back out to hunt up parts for a TV lift system I designed for my Brother's boat. That involved running to a couple of different places trying to hunt up something common in me cars. Electrically operated gas shocks. Simple right? Not so much since I didn't know which car I was putting them into and everything is so computerized people have lost the ability to thing anymore. It's sad really.

So I'm still searching and trying to figure out if there is really any point to me building it since one almost identical to what I designed could be had for $450 dollars ready to install. So far with a manual system it was looking like close to 300 dollars in parts, goodness knows how much the automatic shocks are going to be. The good thing out of this is it inspired me a bit and I've figured out how to built a generator that runs on either water, or garbage, and produces clean clear water and lots of electricity. Plus it has NO moving parts!

It's surprisingly simple using existing materials and technology. Honestly I'm kinda stunned now one else has come up with one. You can build them small enough to have in an electric car, all the way up to an industrial sized model to run a whole building off of. Considering the sheer metric tonnage of garbage this country makes, using it to make power kills two birds with but one stone. Three really, since clean water can be a problem in so many areas. Plus it's got a low carbon footprint. The exhausted from the water based one is, wait for it, water! The garbage based one uses a cleaning system to wring the carbon and toxins produced by burning out of the exhaust so while it's not perfect, it is better than an existing gas or diesel engine.

So now I have to put one together at some point. Just kind of a proof of concept thing. For now I should post this so you all don't think I died or something. I also want to put another post about a dream I had this morning. Ange shared one of her's so I thought I'd do likewise so she doesn't feel all alone. Mine, may rival her's for weirdness though, it's probably weirder. But it was cool.

Saturday, January 03, 2009

I just took another of those online tests and liked the results.

It was called the what kind of girl are you test, and frankly I think it pretty well captures me, but I didn't quite expect to be labeled a beauty. I'm SO no objecting to this at all. The paragraph below the picture is a fairly decent representation of me, which is kinda cool. I also like the fact that it doesn't make me feel objectified or turned into an object. So, party on!

The Liberal Beauty

You scored 79 looks, 79 personality, 2 politics, and 72 sex drive!

You're beautiful, you have a great personality, and you're highly sexual. You're a liberal with your views and you don't put morals before everything. You're probably a great wife or girlfriend, and you know how to make sure that the ones you love are happy. You're probably fun in a conversation and I'm sure that you are as lovable as you are beautiful.

Friday, January 02, 2009

A tale of two pictures part one.

This is the shot most photojournalists would take with a good camera. Just enough fill flash, the main light being the warm, lovely candle light hitting Hillary's face.

F/4, 1/60 of a sec, 28mm and ISO400 with fill flash.

Now, the cake is a bit hot, but I can fix that in post, which will only sharpen the light on her face.

But what If I where to drag the shutter with no fill flash?

A Tale of Two pictures part two!

img_0299_std, originally uploaded by greeneyedggirl.

This is the shot I wanted, the kind of picture most people don't get. Tight DOF, candle light, no flash or overhead room light, all art and warmth and feeling, the picture tales a much better story than the way it normally get shot as in the example above. You can even see the candle light reflected off her glasses, to just bring that story that much more, and to put some "pop" into the highlights. She was looking down at the cake, thinking about her wish, so I wasn't going to get the highlights in her eyes, plus this way, I've got the highlights to draw the viewer there, but she's obviously meditating.

I and everyone else love this shot, because its fine art, not photo journalism. I love throwing these kinds of shots in everywhere I can. This is one of my top ten lifetime photos. Copyright 2007-2009 All rights reserved.

F/4, 1/40 of a second, no flash at ISO400 with a 28mm lens, handheld.

Thursday, January 01, 2009

New Year Resolutions for 2009

  1. I resolve to take more pictures this year, at least one decent one a month, and to have all y'all suffer through them. ;-o)I need that part of my life back. I want to be more creative again and let that energy flow into, through and out of me.
  2. I resolve to further improve my diet, cutting a little bit of carbs back in favor of more protein. Nothing insane mind you, but much healthier.
  3. I resolve to walk more, at least five miles a week, be it inside or outside, and work my way up slowly from there.
  4. I resolve that 2009 will be the year I get everything out of storage, to sort, sell, donate or just throw away.
  5. I resolve that 2009 will be the year I start a memoir in the hopes it will let other women know that domestic violence IS something one can survive.
  6. I resolve to have more fun and laughter in my life!
  7. I resolve to dance more.
  8. I resolve to love and laugh more.
  9. I resolve to do more body sculpting in 2009 than I did in 2008.
So that's what I can think of at the moment. Reasonable, reachable, "realistic" goals to keep. I want to be able to use the word Progress in a sentence about 2009 when it's time for the wrap party! So on the subject of being more creative, I need to head over to the Marina and take some measurements for the custom lift and cabinet I'm designing for my brothers boat. It's gonna be cool. Hit a button and his 52 inch HDTV rises up out of the cabinet. They normally sell for at least five hundred dollars and up. The one I've designed in my head is probably going to be under 200 dollars when all is said and done.

Hope everyone's first day of '09 is wonderful!

Happy New Year!!!

Cut, print everything! That's a wrap folks, 2008 is officially over, never to be repeated. In some ways the best thing about 2008 is that it's over! Welcome to 2009, which is going to be a much better, brighter, happier year for everyone, everywhere!

Happy New Year!