feverish week wrap up

The post right before this one details the oddness that was last Sunday morning, the oddness kept coming although I was not able to post.

-Sunday night, major fever and GI upset. no idea what caused it.
-canceled everything fun in my life, stay in house for next 2 days, trying to work a little and recover. Can't exercise.
-Wednesday feeling close to normal, had the weekly writing meeting with partner, everything seems to be looking up.
word count=64221
-Thursday, make it into office, last day for people getting laid off. Pretty depressing
-Thursday night GI and fever attacks again.
-again cancel everything fun for 2 days and cry in bed feeling miserable, missing exercise
-Sunday, returning to normal, go to memorial service and feel unwell.

Currently--hoping for the best, but not counting on it.
As you can see from the above any posts from me in the past week would have been full of feverish gloom so my silence is probably a really good thing. I am hoping this time I am really getting better, I won't relapse and that I will have a great Imbolc.
And a great Imbolc to all of you as well.

weird and odd Sunday morning

We were surprised this morning to hear our front door knob being turned at 7:40 this morning. It kind of creaks and we could hear it in the kitchen. Since we keep our doors locked it remained closed We looked at each other wonderingly.

I went to the front door with our rotty and decided that if it was someone we knew on the porch the dog would greet them happily and if it wasn't then someone was in for a surprise. Really, I don't know that I was thinking that clearly, part of me almost thought we had imagined the sound. I opened the door, the dog ran out barking and I saw no one.

However my wife saw the person run through our back yard to the alley, and then he stopped to open one of our car doors [which were not locked because of potential ice storms] she banged on the window and told him to get out. We figured then he was on something, because logically you don't run away from barking dog in a house where you know people are awake and aware of you and then stop to check out a car. Do you? I guesss I don't really know.

I spent the rest of the morning looking out of windows feeling very uneasy and then saw found out later from the large number of police cars in the alley that they had been looking for the guy all morning. Very weird and slightly creepy.

Not exactly sure what to think. But I am glad the doors were locked. I know that I don't feel as safe. I want to go dance as usual and I feel nervous leaving the house. Huh.
So strange and normal I guess.

updated word count

I am feeling a bit subdued and beaten down by the week and the atmosphere of grief I sometimes seem to be swimming in, but my word count [and my writing partner] were certainly a pick me up today.

Word count = 63,713

I'll be honest, grief is a theme of which I am getting a bit tired. I am wishing all a weekend of gentleness [unless that is not your thing] and self care of the highest quality.

not a happy post

*warning if you are depressed you may want to skip this one*

You know what sucks way more than work?
People you know dying.

I am left with eyes full of tears I can't shed for a nice person I only got to meet a couple of times. I never had the time to shoot him an email last spring. Because I was so busy. With work. The reminder was on my fridge for months.

Then I felt guilty, then my sour dough starter died, then I gave up, thinking 'eventually I'll get a new starter and email him...'

None of that matters now. I realize once again how hard it is to balance my life, to take care of myself and those I love and to work. I know nothing.

what! work isn't fun?

[Uploaded a profile picture that I took in India, not of me]
Shocking realization. My work = not fun and high stress.

I reread some old journals recently and realized that work has been stressful for ...can it be since I started this job?! You know I think that's true, I remember watching the woman who hired me [who I like] create such a hostile atmosphere in her office that my new coworker started crying. I remember going back to my office after that panicked 'did I take the right job? I should have went with the state job'

There are parts of my job that I love. There is stuff that I hate and I don't believe it would change much in a different place. I don't believe in perfect...anything. In this climate of layoffs I feel nothing but gratitude that I have a job at all. So many do not have this.

I know someone who was in a very bad ski accident this week. The brain damage could be permanent. I look at my suddenly much smaller problems. I don't want to compare but I can't seem not to...things could be so much worse. Then I try to guard against is getting super critical of myself because it is so easy to go there.

In the sauna yesterday a friend was prodding me. She was concerned about my stress levels. She wanted to know what I was going to do. How I was going to take care of myself [by getting away from this job specifically]? She pointed out how bad it was to be under stress all the time.

I tried to explain to her that doing resumes, looking for something else that all takes energy and would be stressful. Which would not be a short term gain. I am trying to guard my time off, to exercise and take care of myself in other ways. ... But I feel limited.

ouch. Limited. Why does that sound so bad? Aren't we all limited by our breath, gravity, and an infinity of other stuff?

It seems particularly hard to recognize what should change and what to accept.
I guess I am not feeling very wise right now.


word count: 62, 508, I also started outline and character pages to help with background-y stuff.

You know anyone out there [not naming names] who wanted to share their word count through a comment would be more than welcome to do that-nudge, nudge. However no pressure, no shoulds.

So perhaps you know that I did resiliency training last autumn and perhaps I mentioned that part of it was meeting one on one with a nutritionist and getting specific food information? Or maybe I didn't mention it here....not really sure.

The point of the above: tomorrow I start the process of checking for food sensitivities.
The method: Part one; no wheat, corn or cow dairy for the next 10 days.
Mental state: pretty upbeat right now, of course it's all just theory at this point, we'll see how I am doing in 3 days or so.
However: still need to keep up the whole eating every 3-4 hours part-huh--because this needed to be more challenging?!
more Daunting bits: Very few eating out possibilities-- since it's hard to be sure if something has corn oil or corn starch in it. Wheat flour sneaks in everywhere as well. So unless I feel comfortable asking the chef... lots of cooking to be done, sounds hard.
Support: dear wife is doing it as well and friends are being great about it.
another Plus: I get to be my own science experiment.
musical finale:
This and this I love, I am such a sucker for an alto, but at the same time it makes me sad that I 'have no languages'. Surely it's not too late?

wrapping up a week and blech goodbyes

Word count=62,022
Today I am not going to say 'where did the week go?' I am aware this week of the major suckitude that happened and why I missed my blog.
To sum up:

Work = big stress + funeral type atmosphere
This is partially caused by the fact that we are losing team members to a lay off at the end of the month. And everyone is fairly sure more layoffs are coming in April. Such a cheerful vibe at work.
Computer=nasty virus and death
My main laptop [work] caught big bad virus Tuesday. I do express my gratitude to the awesome guys who already had my new laptop on order and got it configured in record time this week. But now everything I do is slooooow, because I am redoing all my settings that were lost on the old one. Of course plus side new much needed laptop!
Surprise = big gulpy shock that I am processing
I got a big surprise from a friend this week. It's not really a bad surprise [not like November] but still. I am great in an emergency, but with other kinds of surprises the processing is pretty slow or awkward or something. I sit down now and my brain goes 'huh, what do I think about that surprise and what if anything should be done?'
Goodbyes = letting go?
I started thinking about how I dislike goodbyes when I had to take down the tree. We got an eastern balsam this year and it was a very dry fire hazard. It had to move on. I didn't want it to leave, I love it. That reminded me of all the times when goodbyes make me anxious. Not always, sometimes I feel the space of 'yes, it's time for this thing to end and me to move on' and life is full of ease. But sometimes goodbyes stress me out. And I can't find the pattern to it. Is it because I am not feeling finished? Is it because I don't want the fun to end? Is it because I am dreading the next thing coming up? Does some of this relate to childhood abandonment issues?

Just writing this though reminds me of the great things about the week. Like cheering on a friend who just started a new job, taking my first cycle class and loving it, having an awesome dinner and breakfast with friends, taking Friday off, new cheerful haircut, first monthly Resiliency follow up, January thaws, being in bed by 8pm Friday night and having a writing buddy [mini nanowrimo].

So I will gently commit [no shoulds] to getting some painting and writing done, to getting my new camera out of the box, to enjoy ECD tomorrow night and just be patient with surprises and goodbyes. All of us doing the best we can here. Here's hoping this next week has more space for fun.

knitting, the purple scarf and selfishness

Yes, I have been knitting. But because it was a winter gift I couldn't mention it here. It would have totally been my luck that the one time I am counting on my wife to not remember my blog she does remembers it and reads it and then finds out about the gift I am making in secret for her.

Since I was driving myself crazy trying to keep a knitting secret from the person with which I live it seemed totally foolish to speak about it publicly until the soft fluffy thing was done.
Now at last it is done, she loves it and I can share freely. Of course it is just a scarf so it's not that fascinating. The Harlot's one row pattern scarf, 26 stitches for about 5 feet out of lavender yarn that I found at a thrift store in Palm Springs. The yarn is Caron; Vim and the label does not look new. 50% mohair and 50% orlon, I was sceptical for awhile, but the price was right, the feel nice and it all worked out.

This is the fourth scarf I have made for her since we met almost 7 years ago. Hopefully this one will stick around awhile, they like to go off traveling by themselves.

I need to do more selfish knitting that I can blog about freely. It would also help if I knitted faster. I see for the past year I have worked on 3 things, 2 in total secrecy and the other for my goddaughter. [but that is just another Tulips sweater and most knitters have seen hundreds of them] I was thinking something for me next but I probably have enough yarn for a matching hat, and we are probably going to do another mich fest swap and I really want to do a couple of blocks for the michigan afghan....none of this is leading up to me knitting myself something. Oh well the year has barely started.

missing apartment living?

I wouldn't have guessed that anything could make me miss living in an apartment building. I haven't lived in one for a very long time but I remember that not having a basement bothered me [didn't matter if the building itself had a basement] I think that is because I grew up with one.
I digress, I think this in which Susanne Gilsing took pictures of her own and 12 of her neighbors living rooms is so cool. I am not even sure why I love this so much, but I do. It actually makes me miss living in an apartment! It makes me want to pick up my camera. It fills that women&art void that the museum left in me a bit.

I hope you enjoy it as well.

no multi-tasking update

So over a month ago I shared an intention with you all. To stop multi-tasking when I am eating. Primarily no reading of books or computer stuff when I am eating.

It's been good. First I am still amazed at how ingrained this habit is, even today I was reaching for my afternoon snack and I automatically started reaching for a book as well, caught myself mid reach. Earlier this week I was eating some food at my desk, and didn't realize I had swiveled toward my computer until after I had read a couple of words. 'They' say a month to learn a new habit, but this one is going to take longer. I am by no means at 100% either. There have been times when I have eaten a bar or piece of fruit in the car while driving or packing my briefcase, sometimes due to lack of time and sometimes I have just forgotten. Then I get to practice patience with self as well.

I am noticing that sometimes eating is kind of boring. I am noticing that sometimes I don't want to stop what I am doing in order to have another cookie or helping. I am noticing that my monkey mind will try anything to entertain itself.
'hey is the furnace on?' 'hey, that music is too loud' 'hey let's put the kettle on for tea after'

Still I keep at it. Let's see what the next month brings.

Art and confusing days

Huh, is that right? Is it really Thursday? Hmm, not really sure how that happened.
I remember Tuesday and Wednesday kinda but...are they both really over? okay.

So here it is Thursday then. Word count: 61,601, still progressing on story, still quite bad and first drafty, revisionist thoughts creeping near.
Well I must have done stuff. Let's see I worked, worked out with a friend, cooked and cleaned a little, avoided grocery shopping, let the gas man replace the gas meter reader, went to the museum, went to bed really early last night and tried to stay warm. But still part of me thinks it should still be Tuesday afternoon. Apparently I am not very awake this week.

Oh and I also reread the beginning of this surreal comic, she is getting near the conclusion and I was getting confused with all the different perspectives so I had to 'catch up' again so that I can hopefully enjoy the final months of it.

I saw this show with a friend yesterday at the museum. I am still a bit conflicted about it. On one hand I really enjoyed parts of it especially since I don't have plans for getting to the actual Louvre any time soon. On the other hand it wasn't so fabulous that I am running around telling everyone 'you have to see it, buy scalped tickets!'

Not one known piece by a woman? Huh. Someone had to point that fact out to me, which makes me feel shame and anger at myself -sigh But at the end of it I am glad I went because it was art which feeds a part of me [of us all?] with chewy beauty.
I am especially glad I met this woman. In fact the more I think of her and the Vermeer the happier I am for the experience and also cutting myself slack.

new yoga thing [for me]

Yesterday I had a yogic revelation.
There is a yoga class I enjoy at 8am at my gym. But yesterday, it was about -20F at 6:45 in the morning, and to be honest I didn't want to get out of bed. But if I wanted to go to the class I needed to get up and attempt to start my car and let it warm up if it started...in fact the chat with myself went like this.

me1: 'I really don't want to go out there.'
me2: 'Understandable, but I really think I need the yoga today.'
me1: 'but it's just too cold, don't make me go. besides the gym will be so crowded by all the new resolution people.'
me2: 'I am not going to use the word 'should' but yoga is good for me. and mostly I like it.'
me1: 'true, but I also need rest and recovery and do you know how cold it is out there....?'

and seriously it is silly how long you can talk to yourself when you are barely awake, then suddenly I had a brainstorm, or maybe a third part of me just woke up from all the chattering.

me3: 'you know you can do yoga at home this morning, you don't need to go anywhere to do it.'
me1: '! yeah, I don't have to go out in the cold right now, and I can snuggle in bed an extra half hour.'
me2: 'right on, I can still do yoga.'

ok quit that sniggering over there, I can hear you over the internet. If you are wonder why it took me so long to remember something as simple as I can do yoga at home well, I don't blame you, I am wondering the same thing. I mean I have occasionally done yoga at home at other times. But seriously at 6:45 am yesterday it seemed like the most brilliant realization ever.

And the yoga was fabulous. Already I am feeling better about exercise and January.

away with shoulds -- first anniversary

I gave myself a gift last night. I had a block of time to myself and I spent several hours enjoying past posts on Havi Brooks blog. It was lovely and restorative and fun. This is the woman who inspired me to blog 100+ times in 2009 because she showed me a path towards freedom and away from shoulds.

As I was reveling in her words, deep in the archives of October 2009, I heard a inner voice 'hey when was it exactly that you started blogging again last year?' I would have guessed it was the 13th or 9th, but thanks to archives no one has to depend on my memory. It was January 3rd a year ago today.

I feel a bit teary when I think [again] about how a stranger can help a person [or many] by accident or design to a gift. I had a lot of examples of it this year. They give me hope that life can be good. This blog has been a doorway for me into a more spacious me with more room for fun. That's feeling pretty huge. And it's been basically guilt-free!

As for Havi since she is on an email sabbatical, I may just drop her a snail mail of thanks, because I think she rocks and I want to let people hear good things when I can. Here is one of the sparkley rocks I picked up in her blog archive last night. I want to do this the next time I feel stuck [which may be right now...]

"I am going to buy flowers. And by the time they wilt and lose their petals, things will be better. Or at least different. But I hope better." Andreas via Havi Brooks

Happy 2010

Word count: 60,698
Over 60k and still going. I feel pretty pumped that I got another 10,ooo words written in December considering all the other pressures and duties that the month brings.

2009 was an unhappy year for many people that I know. I certainly found it challenging in many ways mostly related to work and my trip to India. I experienced first hand the kind of patriarchy that I hope doesn't really exist in this country anymore [outside of a cult]. It was only for a month and I hated parts of the experience intensely. And yet I love so many of the people I met in India, and I am grateful for the new forms of compassion the trip helped me to develop.
Because of my India trip I got my first introduction to Amsterdam which is playing a big part in my dreams right now.
My work life showed me another aspect of how important self care is, and I am recommitting myself to another year of increased self care.
There was a lot of grief and fear wrapped up in 2009. I miss my dear dog and I watch my parents moving into their mid 80's and sigh about the cycle of which I am part. My mother has awed me this year and showed me yet again that change can happen no matter how old you are.
Two big gifts of 2009 were resiliency training and nanowrimo. For them I send a sincere thanks and namaste to Henry Emmons and Chris Baty. Not only have they changed my life through their work but I truly believe that they have changed the world. To me they are Bodhisattvas of freedom.
Wrapping up glad to be in 2010 feeling stronger and full of possibilities. Happy 2010 all.
Let's see what happens!