Sunday, December 25, 2011

Oasis of the Seas

I just got home from a totally amazing week, aboard Royal Caribbean's Oasis of the Seas with my grandmother, aunt, uncle, and two cousins. I plan to post day-by-day highlights, but first here are some overall stats for the ship:

(Note: this picture is from the website; I did not take it. There's never really a chance at this angle even when you aren't on the ship.)

She was built in Finland and her maiden voyage was December 5, 2009. In order to get out of the shipyard she had to go under a bridge that she was just a bit too tall for. In order to solve the problem they made her smokestacks retractable (just for this one bridge, they never need to retract again!) and went at the bridge full speed (just under 24 knots or 27.63 miles per hour), in order to get as low in the water as possible. They barely squeaked under!

She has props of a new design that can swivel/turn 360 degrees, so that she can literally turn in place!

She is one of the two largest cruise ships in the world (the other is her sister Oasis Class ship, Allure of the Seas [Allure is actually 2 inches longer, technically speaking...]) at 360 meters long (1,187 feet), 64 meters wide (208 feet), 65 meters above the waterline (213 feet), and a draft of about 9 meters (around 30 feet). She weighs in at 2225, 282 tons (out of water)!

She has 16 public decks and 2706 guest rooms which can hold up to 6300 guests. The staff hovers at around 2300 and during my cruise they represented 64 countries.

It has a zipline, 2 rock climbing walls, 2 flow-riders, 24 dining rooms, restaurants, et cetera, about 12,000 plants and trees including an onboard park, several theaters (live, movie, and aqua!), a boardwalk with a carousel, an ice skating rink (smaller than standard at 40 by 60 feet), a promenade, several pools and hot tubs... pretty much anything!

It was an absolutely amazing week!

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Sugar As Safety

I had an interesting realization last night, that in my brain I have an over-coupling involving safety and sugar. To me, eating sugary foods feels like physical safety. Some where along the way those two ideas got wired into the same circuits in my brain (that's basically what over-coupling means, in this case).

When I was a kid, sugar was kinda verboten in my house, so whenever I got my sneaky little hands on some, I would hide to eat it. I think that's where this over coupling came from: the warm, cozy feeling of my hiding spots got mixed in with the act of eating the sweets.

I had this realization kind of out of the blue yesterday. Last night rather than going for a sugary snack, I did other things that felt like safety to me. It was a mildly successful experiment that I intend to continue.


I'm in the middle of a conversation with a friend, about how I like to encourage people to be themselves because I truly do believe that we are who we are, and have the callings that we do, because we are genuinely needed in the world for some reason, and that our only real job is to show up in the world as who we genuinely are. But then I'm also a total hypocrite, because I don't think I show up as fully myself very often. I don't think I'm a very masked person, I don't think I'm inauthentic, but I don't think I'm radically authentic, either. I don't think I am me in a "let you colors fly, let the chips fall where they may" kind of way.

So in this conversation my friend asked "what do you hide? and I froze. Physically and mentally I just... froze... for a few moments. Because if I admit to believing I am certain things, and I already have confessed to believing we have a duty to the world and humanity to show up as our genuine selves... well then I'm kinda committed if I say I have traits I don't fully manifest, right?

Maybe. I suppose I could always use some excuse like "I'm not ready" or whatever... (see, that's my way of making this next part not quite so frightening)...
So here are some traits that I think I have that I don't fully manifest:
-sensing inauthenticity (maybe this is part of intuition; what I mean is, I have a knack for sensing and dismissing bullsh*t)
-mindfulness (especially but not only in regard to being fully rpesent with another person)

I think those are the big ones, in terms of the difference they could make in me and in the world.

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Percolating: Pain and the Pheminine

(Sorry about the title, had to go for the alliteration)
Been a while since I wrote anything much on here, huh. I guess I've been in a percolating, consolidating sort of phase.

Remember over the summer when I had that crazy abdominal pain that never really got figured out? It came back, sometime around the middle of November. I've seen specialists again, had scans again, but no one can figure anything out, again. Currently I'm actively seeing a naturopath and an acupuncturist, and I have an appointment on January 10 to see an internist/hepatologist. Nothing seems to really be helping much. The pain is pretty constant, but not very intense. I'd say it hovers around a 3 on the 1-10 pain scale, give or take a point or two in either direction at any given time. More activity yields more pain, so I haven't been doing a whole lot, but I can get errands done, went to have dinner with my brother's family a few days ago, I do short walks around the block and all... I just try not to do too much (which is a kind of fluid goal).

Another thing I'm doing is working the psychological angle. I looked up lower abdomen/uterine pain (I'm pretty convinced it's either uterine or bladder, based on where the pain is, and the acupuncturist agrees) in Louse L. Hayes' book. She has a huge compilation of affirmations she recommends for all kinds of physical and mental ailments. The one I found was something about "I embrace my feminine energy." I thought "well cool, I can do... uhm... what exactly is feminine energy....?" So now I've embarked on a huge, three-pronged research mission; 1. defining feminine/female energy, 2. examining the feminine in history, and 3. look at how the feminine is expressed in current cultures (and of course, how does all of this relate to me). Along the way I'm doing a lot of reading, a lot of talking (especially but not strictly with women), and a lot of thinking. I feel like it's actually helpful to my physical pain levels when I am actively engaged in this project; maybe that's placebo and maybe not, but either way I'll take it. I'll also take any comments or thoughts or ideas anyone has!

I was watching this video on youtube today of a flash mob at Occupy San Francisco/Oakland. One cool thing was, it reminded me very much of Baha'i Youth Workshop dances from back in the day. But another thing that really struck me was a brief shot of a woman with the words "choose your story" written on tape across her shirt. What a powerful idea; the fact that we get to choose what we want our story to be, and then act it out....

Saturday, November 19, 2011

Friday, November 4, 2011


I often meditate at night. Usually it's just a calm centering after the activity of the day, a winding-down sort of time. Last night was more interesting, though.

A bit of background first, though. A few years ago I was in a Reiki (energy healing) class and we were doing a guided meditation. Part of the meditation was to imagine someone there with you who was a guide, or a teacher. I immediately had a very clear image of a tall man with long, wavy dark hair, blue eyes, and fair-to-olivey skin. He wore all white, in a sort of loose trouser-and-tunic outfit. He also wore a moonstone necklace. He felt comfortable, in a strict-but-kind teacher sort of way. I realized that he actually looked and felt very familiar to me, as if I had known him for a while, although he didn't resemble anyone I actually knew.

During this guided meditation I had a strong feeling that I should get a necklace like the one he wore. For several days I actively looked for the necklace online and in shops. I found kind of similar things, but nothing that felt "close enough." At that point I kind of gave up, lost interest a bit, decided maybe I had imagined my strong reactions to the whole experience. Several weeks later I happened to be visiting New York City and randomly wandered into a street market. On a cluttered table of gemstone necklaces I saw the necklace the man had been wearing. I bought it, of course, and I often feel moved to wear it during times of personal challenge.

I don't really know what to call this man; spirit guide, guardian angel, teacher, imaginary friend.... A few months ago I was feeling strongly connected with him again (the feeling of connection kind of comes and goes) and during a meditation the name "Adesh" came to me. Later I looked it up and it turns out that Adesh means "teacher" in sanskrit. I don't know if I subconsciously already knew this, or it is coincidence, or what, but it fits, and that is how I think of him now.

So last night, I was sitting in my big comfy chair doing a mantra sort of meditation (So Hum, in case you're curious) and about half way through I felt that I was surrounded by people I have loved, and who have loved me, who have passed on. It was a good feeling; I felt warm and loved and supported. After a few minutes of this sort of communing, I felt that Adesh was present. I also had a strong feeling to take off all of my jewelry.

I've never thought of myself as a superstitious person, but as I obeyed this feeling I realized that I really really am! I felt very uncomfortable as I took off my anklet (a rune of protection) and two necklaces (one is a blue glass bead that I have been wearing constantly for several years, and one is a glass pendant that was sold as a "dragon tear" and which I had ascribed magical protection properties to), and my crystal earrings. What a lot of fear-energy I was keeping on my person, in feeling that I need all of these protection amulets all the time! In fact, as I took off the bead (which to me looks like a river, which is a name I frequently go by) I actually literally thought "But how will I know who I am without this?"

Wow. For a few minutes I felt very naked and vulnerable and exposed. Then I started to feel lighter, and free. I imagined Adesh smiling at me in a knowing kind of way as I explored these new feelings of just being myself in the world, not guarded and shielded and wrapped up in my superstitions; perhaps more vulnerable but also more open to possibility.

Later, as I picked up the jewelry to put it away in my jewelry box, I actually felt an aversion to touching the items that not long ago I was putting so much trust and power into.

It's only been about 12 hours, and for most of those hours I've been asleep. I still do feel sort of bizarrely exposed and the spot on my chest where there has been some kind of protective sort of necklace feels too light. I'm determined to see this idea through til whatever end may come, though.

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Adorable Geekery

(Little kids dressed up as The Doctor from Doctor Who, for those of you not quite sure what is going on here.)

Friday, October 28, 2011

Great Things

Writing. With a pen and paper.

Elmo and Kevin Clash
(Kevin is the guy who performs Elmo)

Jim Parsons
(and his character, Sheldon Cooper)

Huge boats, and having the opportunity to be on them

Bell peppers

The Charlotte Waites

New music to learn

Wednesday, October 19, 2011


I volunteer at Cedarwood Academy, playing violin and exploring musical concepts with the kids.

My Hair

OK, I know it's a little hard to make out, but that's me on the right, with the huge mass of hair! I knew I had a lot of hair, but man this picture really brings it home!
So the other day I went to get a trim. The following conversation occurred:

Haircutter lady: What kind fo conditioner do you use; rinse out or leave in?
Me: Usually a leave in. It seems to tame my hair a bit better.
Haircutter lady: Honey.... you need to be using both.

Presented Without Comment

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Your Piece of the Puzzle

A friend recently emailed me, expressing some self doubt he is having about some big changes he wants to make in how he lives and supports himself and his family. Here was my response:

Let's say everyone in the world is born holding a puzzle piece. At some point in our lives, we've got to bring our puzzle piece to the table. It may have some curves that are similar to another's puzzle piece, or a common color scheme. It probably fits into a spot surrounded by at least 4 more pieces that have similar designs... but if you don't bring your piece to the table, no one will ever get to see the complete picture.

So screw whether someone thinks your puzzle piece is the right color, or if they can't see it clearly and don't think it fits, or whatever. Your job isn't to please their sensibilities, your sole job is to bring your piece to the table.

You may set it down in the wrong place at first, or upside down, but that's ok. You'll realize your mistake soon enough and try something else, until you find exactly the place your piece goes. You've got to bring it to the table to start the process though; it's a huge puzzle and sitting back observing until you think you know exactly how to plug your piece in isn't going to work.

In short: you have every business doing what you feel called to do. What you don't have any business doing is, not doing what you feel called to do. That interest and calling is how we know what our puzzle piece is.

Friday, October 14, 2011

I Named My Son After This Poet

On Death
by Kahlil Gibran

You would know the secret of death.
But how shall you find it unless you seek it in the heart of life?
The owl whose night-bound eyes are blind unto the day cannot unveil the mystery of light.
If you would indeed behold the spirit of death, open your heart wide unto the body of life.
For life and death are one, even as the river and the sea are one.

In the depth of your hopes and desires lies your silent knowledge of the beyond;
And like seeds dreaming beneath the snow your heart dreams of spring.
Trust the dreams, for in them is hidden the gate to eternity.
Your fear of death is but the trembling of the shepherd when he stands before the king whose hand is to be laid upon him in honour.
Is the shepherd not joyful beneath his trembling, that he shall wear the mark of the king?
Yet is he not more mindful of his trembling?

For what is it to die but to stand naked in the wind and to melt into the sun?
And what is it to cease breathing, but to free the breath from its restless tides, that it may rise and expand and seek God unencumbered?

Only when you drink from the river of silence shall you indeed sing.
And when you have reached the mountain top, then you shall begin to climb.
And when the earth shall claim your limbs, then shall you truly dance.

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

My Grandma

This is me, my grandmother (on my dad's side), my nephew, and my brother. This picture is nearly 6 years old (based on the fact that my nephew is now almost six and a half). 

My grandmother died this evening, at around 5:25. Peacefully, I am told. 

When I was a kid, my family visited her and my grandfather quite a lot. We only lived 2 or 3 hours away, in Michigan. I remember lots of berry picking, pie and cookie baking, swimming, and wintery things like sledding. They lived in a very cool octagon-shaped house that my grandfather built, in a pretty wilderness-y area of Michigan with lots of lakes around. It was a great place for me, my brother, and our three cousins to get to spend vacations.

My grandmother stayed with me while my parents were at the hospital when my brother was being born. I always associate her with warmth and old-fashioned nurturing. 

When I was 7, my family moved many many hours drive away, and I was never really close with her again (or any of the northern branch of my family that I had spent my formative years around, really). I've seen her maybe half a dozen times in the years since then. I've kept track of her through my father, and I assume she heard about the major highlights of my life the same way. I sent a Christmas card every year, just to remind her that I still thought of her and loved her, even though we weren't really in touch any more.

I still do think of her and love her. 

Happy ascension, Helen Josephine Nevill Capper
November 10, 1925 - October 11, 2011

Great Things: Other People's Photos Edition

Just some little blurby photos I like, that aren't mine.

It's Faire Season!

This is what I'll be doing for the next several weekends.

Thursday, September 29, 2011

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Saturday, September 17, 2011

Uhm.... What??

I was just out running an errand and I saw a business man. Quite a proper one: dark suit, red power tie, nice shoes, even a real briefcase. Wearing... a bonnet. As if he had just lost a bet with Laura Ingalls.

How can anyone ever be bored, when things like this happen in the world?

Monday, September 12, 2011

Great Things

Unlimited Possibilities

Being open to other ways of living


Fresh breezes


Sunday, September 11, 2011

Me, I'm A Part of Your Circle of Friends

Anyone remember that song? In case anyone else is now having a burst of nostalgia, here ya go. Good ol' Edie.

Really, that's not the point of this post though. The point is this:

I have a small circle of friends. I like it that way. I'm interested in deep relationships, of the sort which are difficult (for me, anyway) to maintain lots of. I consider those deep relationships, my friends. I do have some ... I guess shallow is the opposite of deep, but it doesn't mean I don't value those relationships. Just, I don't consider them my circle of friends, I guess.

The danger of this, I have discovered and re-discovered, is forgetting that not everyone in my circle also has a small circle. In fact, some of them have huge circles. Sometimes it's too easy for me to feel hurt by what feel like slights or omissions in communication and sharing, because I forget (and really can't very easily conceive of what it's really like) that some people have what seems like vast numbers of social contacts.

I'm not entirely sure what the solution is... maybe just as simple as remembering that my experience is in no way any one else's experience.

Saturday, September 10, 2011

Acquainted With the Night

Acquainted With the Night
by Robert Frost

I have been one acquainted with the night.
I have walked out in rain -- and back in rain.
I have outwalked the furthest city light.

I have looked down the saddest city lane.
I have passed by the watchman on his beat
And dropped my eyes, unwilling to explain.

I have stood still and stopped the sound of feet
When far away an interrupted cry
Came over houses from another street,

But not to call me back or say good-bye;
And further still at an unearthly height,
O luminary clock against the sky

Proclaimed the time was neither wrong nor right.
I have been one acquainted with the night.

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Three Words

A while ago I made this collage, that kind of describes who I would like to be.

Today I got an assignment from one of my counselors to choose three words from the collage to concentrate on for the week. I am supposed to do everything within the context of the three words. So if I make a meal, I concentrate on the passion, sacredness, and naturalness of the food, what I'm doing, why I'm doing it, how I'm doing it, et cetera. It should be an interesting week!

I've chosen passion, natural, and sacred.

Wednesday, August 31, 2011

This Is How I Feel About "Small Talk"

"I can't learn anything from you, I can't read in some f**kin' book. Unless you want to talk about you, who you are. Then I'm fascinated. I'm in."
--Good Will Hunting

Thursday, August 25, 2011

I Learned A New Word

Chiaroscuro. It means the art or practice of so arranging the light and dark parts to produce a harmonious effect. Usually it refers to art, but I'd very much like to make it refer to my life.

Monday, August 22, 2011

Being OK With Being OK

So basically, in the grand scheme of life, I'm doing OK. I have set backs and all, but who doesn't. Whereas, 5 or 6 years ago, I was really not doing OK. I mean, really... but I'll spare you the details.

But here's the interesting thing; sometimes I'm not OK with doing OK. For a lot of reasons, I suspect, but one is that (and I know in my head that this doesn't make much sense, but I feel it anyway) sometimes I feel like being OK now negates my past not-being-OK-ness. Like, somehow, if I was able to get over it, it wasn't actually all that bad.

And it kinda makes me interested in self-sabotage, just so that I can make sure that my troubled past isn't forgotten. I'm not even sure who I think shouldn't forget... me, you, my family, God... I have no idea. But the thought is often there, especially when it's just been pointed out to me how very OK I am doing now.

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Great Things

(Wow, I'm long overdue for a Great Things post!)

Epic friendships




Monday, July 25, 2011

It's Easier To See Light In The Dark

This is a small bit from William Blake's Auguries of Innocence. 
Every night and every morn
Some to misery are born,
Every morn and every night
Some are born to sweet delight.

Some are born to sweet delight,
Some are born to endless night.

We are led to believe a lie
When we see not thro' the eye,
Which was born in a night to perish in a night,
When the soul slept in beams of light.

God appears, and God is light,
To those poor souls who dwell in night;
But does a human form display
To those who dwell in realms of day.

Friday, July 8, 2011

Responsibility, Not Blame.

"Taking control of your life should not mean that you are on your own.  It means that you face yourself and your choices with honesty, changing what you can and allowing yourself to ask for help where you need it."

That quote is from this blog, from which I have never read anything else but this one post.

I really like this one post though; responsibility without blame is a key concept for me, and one I am constantly refining.

Thursday, July 7, 2011


I was just reading a little description-blurb about a documentary, and this is what it said: "In some religions, devotion is measured by physical suffering and self-inflicted pain."

That phrase "self-inflicted pain" struck a chord with me, as you might imagine.

And I had this kind of weird idea; what if my scars from "self-inflicted pain" are a kind of devotion to myself? I mean... clearly not healthy, not what I want. But all that aside... I feel like my scars are a sign of devotion to myself. A sign that I struggled but still remained alive and did whatever I could think of, even if it didn't seem to make sense, to stay that way.

In a way, I'm proud of them, because they represent my devotion to my self, and to my life.

Fortunately, Unfortunately

Did you ever play that game as a kid, "Fortunately and Unfortunately?" A group takes turns telling a story, but after the initial sentence each person starts, alternating, with the word "fortunately" or "unfortunately."

So here is today's story:

Once I went to a follow up doctor's visit.

Unfortunately, he scheduled an exploratory surgery for Monday.

Fortunately, I don't have to stay in the hospital until then.

Unfortunately, when I got home I locked my keys (and my phone) in my car.

Fortunately, I had passed a police car not far from my house

Unfortunately, when I walked down the street and asked the officer for help, he told me they aren't allowed to open people's cars any more.

Fortunately, I have AAA and he was able to call them for me.

Unfortunately, I sat on an anthill while I was waiting for AAA.

Fortunately, I am now in my house and doing OK (aside from the pain and nausea and fatigue I've had for the past few weeks anyway).

(Also, are you supposed to tip tow truck guys? 'Cause if so.. sorry, AAA tow truck guy who opened my car for me. I didn't have any cash, anyway.)

"I Love the Dark Hours of My Being"

I love the dark hours of my being.
My mind deepens into them.
There I can find, as in old letters,
...the days of my life, already lived,
and held like a legend, and understood.

Then the knowing comes: I can open
to another life that's wide and timeless.

So I am sometimes like a tree
rustling over a gravesite
and making real the dream
of the one its living roots

a dream once lost
among sorrows and songs.

--Ranier Maria Rilke 

Sunday, June 26, 2011

My Hopes for Myself, as Written By Someone Else

Autobiography in Five Short Chapters

By Portia Nelson

Chapter I

I walk down the street
There is a deep hole in the sidewalk
I fall in
I am lost . . . I am helpless
It isn't my fault
It takes forever to find a way out.

Chapter II

I walk down the same street.
There is a deep hole in the sidewalk.
I pretend I don’t see it.
I fall in again.
I can’t believe I am in the same place.
But, it isn’t my fault.
It still takes a long time to get out.

Chapter III

I walk down the same street
There is a deep hole in the sidewalk.
I see it is there.
I still fall in . . . it’s a habit.
My eyes are open. I know where I am.
It is my fault.
I get out immediately.

Chapter IV

I walk down the same street.
There is a deep hole in the sidewalk.
I walk around it.

Chapter V

I walk down another street

Great Things: Illness Edition

Learning things from my hospital stay.
(This is actually the one where I was.)

The opportunity to learn to ask for help, and be comfortable with it.

The opportunity to try out a raw foods diet.
(I've been put on one to try to mitigate some of the negative effects of having so many hard-hitting antibiotics.)

Realizing what my very top priorities are.
(I have very little energy; I have to very consciously decide where to expend it.)

Gaining greater compassion for suffering.

Gaining greater appreciation for my regular life, and how far I have come in it.

Illness Frustration

I'm struggling with the idea of being ill. I want to go back to my life as it was; I don't want to miss the last week of the school year at the place where I volunteer, I don't want to be missing so many dance practices, I don't want to have to ask for rides to the grocery store. I want to be able to find a position to sit or lay or stand in that is comfortable, I want to be able to do even basic things for myself, I want to not be reliant on medications to be able to get good rest. And yet, that's where I am.

I have this idea I try to act on in my life that I call "yes, thank you." All of my experiences, my thoughts, my feelings, I want to be able to welcome them and learn from them; to say "yes! thank you!" to them. My personal motto or affirmation has become "I welcome, treasure, and celebrate all aspects of my life."

And I know that there is a lot for me to learn from this illness... other wise, I wouldn't be having it! But right now, this evening, uncomfortable and feeling helpless on my couch, I am having a lot of trouble appreciating that.

Saturday, June 25, 2011

Hospital Lessons

I spent the last week in the hospital for a mysterious abdominal infection. It's still not cleared up (and I'm still pretty ill), but I've been sent home with oral antibiotics to clear up the infection so that the next round of CTs and MRIs and Ultrasounds will actually show something besides pus and fluid and we might be able to sort out the actual cause of the infection.

Here are some things I learned:

1. Don't tell hospital staff you have any food allergies, unless they are life threatening. It will seriously limit your diet, even in ways that don't make any sense.

2. It is totally your right in any situation at any time to have as much time to think as you feel you need, and to refuse anything that anyone wants to do to your body.

3. How you treat someone has a huge impact on how they receive what you are saying, how willing they are to listen to what you have to say later, and how difficult it is for them to interact with you on pretty much any level on any subject.

4. Getting things through an IV can make you smell and taste stuff.

5. Hospitals are sadly lacking in the two main basics of health; rest and nutrition.

6. Be clear and open about what you want and need, even if you think it's already been indirectly addressed.

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

A Craving Story

This week I've gotten upset twice. I know that may not sound like a whole lot, but I'm generally a really laid-back person!

Once was because I felt that someone was being really pushy about giving me advice.  In fact, the way the person was phrasing things felt nothing like friendly advice, and very much like "I have it all together, and I know exactly what you need to do; do it my way or you'll regret it!" I got angry at what felt like an invasion, but I addressed the issue with humor and compassion, and basically let it go.

But then the next day a bunch of international friends of mine were planning a huge international get together that I am unable to attend. The gathering has been a bit of a sensitive spot for me since it got past the initial planning stages, actually. I feel like the group is going to get tighter without me, and I will miss out on the closeness that they will all develop. Anyway, there was some stuff around that going on that also got me feeling angry.

And that's when I noticed I really really really wanted to eat Captain D's fish and chips, with a Coke. For my international readers (and maybe not in my region readers; I'm not sure how far spread Captain D's is), Captain D's is basically seafood fast food. I was pretty surprised at myself, for having such a specific and strong craving when I haven't had a real craving in quite some time.

So I stepped back to look at it:

1. I was feeling left out, and suspected the feeling would last.

2. I was feeling angry, and somewhat betrayed and invaded.

3. My dad used to take my brother and I to Captain D's when we spent weekends with him after he and my mother got divorced, where I always got fish and chips and a Coke. Captain D's was like a treat, and a thing that we only did with my dad, so it was special.

4. Fried food, especially if white potatoes and gluten are involved, makes me feel very heavy and full and lethargic; in other words, it kind of numbs me out.

OK, so, craving deconstructed! What I was really wanting was to feel connected and, if that couldn't happen, numb.

I opted not to get my fish and chips. Instead I texted a message of appreciation to a friend and re-read a light novel that has always drawn me in very effectively.

A few hours later my craving had passed and I was feeling much better!

Friday, June 10, 2011

River Breeze Wellness

My friends! I am so excited!

I am now the owner of a legally licensed business called River Breeze Wellness! It has a website, a bank account, a PayPal account, a pretty green business license, and, most importantly, potential clients!

I will be doing holistic health counselling, which is supporting clients in exploring how food and lifestyle choices affect their health and happiness. I will support this work with Option-style dialogues and Reiki.

The dialogues and Reiki I am offering now, and the holistic health counselling by the end of the year (I am currently in training at the Institute for Integrative Nutrition).

Target Does Not Complete Me

Target as in, the huge buy-everything-you-could-possibly-ever-need-here store.

I went there the other day to buy a pot; now that I'm cooking most of what I eat I am finding my kitchen lacking!

In the past when I've gone to Target I've been drawn to at least a few items I didn't really need; pens or some little decorative or organizational thing. I have to remind myself, "You don't need that, it's just going to sit around and eventually you'll give it away to Goodwill or something."

This last time I was in Target, though, I wasn't drawn to anything like that at all! I just went in, found what I needed and wandered down a few aisles that looked like they had potential interestingness.

I just had this feeling, though, that I was fine, that I was in no way lacking, and that I didn't need anything more. I think this was really an outward example of what has been an inward process: I am feeling more and more like I as a person am whole, and complete, and not in some way nonfunctional or hollow. While of course I have room to grow, I am also doing just fine as I am. This is a new kind of feeling for me, and I love it!

Thursday, June 2, 2011

I Am Amazing

The original title for this post was "My Body Is Amazing" but I changed it for two reasons. One, an "amazing body" can definitely have an aesthetic connotation that I am not trying to imply and two, I am trying to move away from the dichotomy of seeing my body as separate from me. I mean, I do believe that my true and eternal being is spiritual, but right now, I am also clearly a physical being. I think it does my mind, spirit, and body a disservice to try to separate them in the context of day-to-day living.

So, here is why I am amazing.

First, a couple of weeks ago I had a consultation with an Ayruvedic doctor (Ayruveda is the traditional medicine system of India). In Ayruveda there are three categories of being, called doshas. The doshas all represent different aspects of mind, body, and soul. We all have all three doshas, and ideally, we would have a nice balance of approximately 33% of each dosha operating within us at any given time. Unfortunately, "ideal" rarely meets "actual."

There are two ways to measure doshas in a person: their natural doshas (what the percentages of the doshas are in you naturally) and their current doshas (where those percentages are now, whether due to illness or physical imbalance, psychological or emotional issues, et cetera).

My current doshas are fairly out of whack, but my natural doshas are very balanced! The doctor actually said that she had never worked with someone who is "tri-doshic" as I am, and that it is quite rare. So yay for my innate potential to be a very balanced person!

The second reason I am awesome happened when I was at the dentist this morning (and may I just say, it is pretty darn awesome that I was at the dentist's office at all, as I have a terrible fear of any sort of dental work). The dental assistant and the dentist herself both asked me what sort of dental hygiene care routine I practice. I need some kind of extensive work done, so I was concerned that they were asking so that they could point out where I was going wrong. Instead, it turned out they were asking because my teeth were so clean, with very little build-up, and they wanted to know how I maintained that! This is an area in which I haven't been giving myself a whole lot of support, so it was awesome to hear that I am naturally talented at keeping clean teeth!

The third reason was very cool. I was just at my neighborhood health food store and a Biofeedback practitioner was set up doing 20-minute demonstrations. I decided to do one, and it was really informative. I'm considering doing a full session with her. I found out that except for having slow digestion and absorption (which is an issue I am already addressing), I am remarkably healthy! In fact, the practitioner seemed really impressed with the numbers that were coming up.

I'm really proud of myself for working so effectively on maintaining my physical health, and I'm really pleased that I have a natural tendency toward great health as well!

Friday, May 27, 2011

Great Things

Sun rise

Being able to see the moon during the day
(I promise, the white smudge in the middle is the moon)

(for both taste and sentimental reasons)

Neti pots

Long distance communication technologies