1. Sleep without underwear every once and a while, it’s good for you. Maybe even try sleeping naked.
2. Take long baths with tea, ice cream, or whatever you please. Throw in bubbles if that’s your style.
3. Look at yourself like you look at your best friend. Find the freckles you love, what your eyes look best with, what hairstyle compliments your smile.
4. When you look at your naked body in the mirror, only think good things. Say compliments to yourself aloud. Watch yourself smile, and encourage yourself.
5. Take yourself out on a date. Treat yourself to the things you love. You’re alone yes, but there is nothing wrong with that. Remember all the times you were smothered by people and talking crowds, and you only wanted to be alone with yourself.
6. Write yourself a love note. Tell yourself your favorite things about you, and tell yourself all the things you want to become. Tell yourself you’ll love you forever.
7. Take pictures of yourself. Selfies are magnificent! Take 500! Take them everywhere! Find the good lighting! Pick your favorite one and realize what a wonderful work of art you are.
8. Acknowledge your accomplishments, all of them. Got out of bed? It’s hard sometimes and it’s been hard before, so honestly great job. Drink lots of water, and at the end of the day congratulate yourself for staying hydrated. Let yourself know when you are proud, and soak up the feeling of “well done”.
“You do not have to be good.
You do not have to walk on your knees
for a hundred miles through the desert repenting.
You only have to let the soft animal of your body
love what it loves.
Tell me about despair, yours, and I will tell you mine.
Meanwhile the world goes on.
Meanwhile the sun and the clear pebbles of the rain
are moving across the landscapes,
over the prairies and the deep trees,
the mountains and the rivers.
Meanwhile the wild geese, high in the clean blue air,
are heading home again.
Whoever you are, no matter how lonely,
the world offers itself to your imagination,
calls to you like the wild geese, harsh and exciting-
over and over announcing your place
In the family of things.”—
Work is insane right now: Today, I finally submitted a long-planned presentation which has been a challenge because of how difficult it’s been to find positive stories for our sales team.
Once that was done, we had a department meeting, then I was given 3 more projects. I’m yawning just typing this!
Grateful to be learning: Though it’s busy, I can tell my boss is really trying to support me and brainstorm/strategize together, as opposed to his usual vagueness or tendency to ignore me for many days, only to eventually assert, “I need you to just figure it out.” with a dismissive hand at 5pm.
The catch is: I had to move my 2nd writing session of the year to a later date. The deadlines motivate me to get some creative writing done in my spare time, but because I’ve been so stressed and worn out by work, I’ve only written about 5 pages of a first draft (I am meant to send at least 20!). I made some great strides with my first set in January and now, I’m not gonna lie, I’m worried about letting my teacher down if this isn’t as compelling and well-structured.
The good news is: I’ve read 2 memoirs already this year, which is more reading than I did last year total, lol. And with each paragraph, page and chapter, I’m learning so much about technique, style and voice. Like full on scrambling out of bed for a notebook and pen to write down ideas for stories. Nerd alert. Said memoirs are:
The Liar’s Club by Mary Karr: dramatic, powerful, a little indulgent and long.
Men We Reaped by Jessmyn Ward: vulnerable, detailed, youthful, but wise.
I’m happier these days: since what happened with that truck and all last week, I’ve been trying to breathe, take my time, whine less, complain less, and see the silver lining in almost everything. It also helped me recognize that I have a wonderful group of friends, family & coworkers (& tumblrs!) that care about my well being and safety. Oh perspective, you old so and so…
On my way to work today, I got hit by a truck turning left onto Amsterdam from my street. Luckily he was going slowly and he stopped as soon as he saw me, or maybe when the sun got out of his eyes once he turned. I don’t know what, but I’m grateful he wasn’t going fast and I only got bumped on my arm. It took him awhile but he finally came out and apologized and asked if I was okay. In shock, I kept walking, my mouth hanging open.
I continued to cross the street then stopped and turned right around again to come back home. I got scared thinking of what could’ve happened and how maybe no one would’ve known. I called my boss and texted two of my best friends and made an appointment to see the physician’s assistant at my doctor’s office. I might have whiplash and she said I’ll be sore tomorrow. Taking painkillers for the next few days will help.
When I finally told my Mom she understandably got angry that I didn’t call sooner and eventually burst into tears. I got upset at her for making me think of the awful possibilities and for asking me if I got the driver’s information and telling me what I should have done. But she’s right, and I admitted I got scared and needed some quiet and didn’t want to stay standing in the middle of the street. She got philosophical on me talking about the realities of our lives and what is important.
It’s feeling more sore now: my neck and my right arm, but I’m okay. Thank goodness for that.
for some reason I think turning down the volume of my TV will help me be less scared during creepy shows/movies. I’m watching The Following right now and it’s set at 7 and I can barely hear the dialogue *insert nervous laughter here
1. My hair. It looks best when it’s dirty, unbrushed, and tousled. I’ve had hair dressers deny me a perm and discourage against coloring. They tell me how healthy it is, how thick the strands are, and how other women would kill for its natural straightness.
2. I will go anywhere to attend anything for a friend. I’ll travel just about anywhere to attend a birthday, shower, wedding, family member’s wake/funeral, housewarming, sibling’s wedding, civil union, store opening, art show, brunch… I’ve taken every line of the NJ Transit rail system. You name it, I rode it. Related: I’ve never owned a car in my entire life and have learned to love sitting b!tch in the ever-unpopular back middle seat.
3. I’m really self-aware and thoughtful about the space I take up in this world, what my words mean, and what my actions say to the people I care about/interact with day to day.
4. I have a good sense of humor. I laugh often and engage in a lot of self-deprecation. I do it to reveal my insecurities in a non-scary way and to make people feel comfortable. I was once sitting next to a really cute guy on a plane who when opening his mini bag of pretzels pulled so hard they all flew into the air and rained on top of him. I burst out laughing and offered him some of mine (which he declined). When he didn’t laugh or even crack a smile, he suddenly became the most unattractive guy on the flight.
5. I’m spiritual. You can talk to me about all the “embarrassing” self-help, Oprah-watching, aura-glowing, mantra-saying, feels-having, Om-chanting stuff that some people think is corny & lame. I’ll never mock or make fun, and will probably jump onto your bandwagon if I think it will help our mental health, together.
I had my post-holiday emotional breakdown today, read: going to work turned out to be eventful! Crying while wearing my coat, hunched over in my office chair, door closed(!), chatting online with best friends and one guy in particular I keep letting into my heart.
There’s a lot I need to fix, without being too hard on myself, knowing that instant gratification isn’t always long-lasting, and that expectations rarely tend to lessen when it comes to love. It is taking many moons for me to learn this, that my choices have a great impact on what I get used to and what I will accept. I’m asking someone emotionally unavailable to give himself fully to me, while I shovel my own loneliness down his throat, hoping he’ll mold it into a real relationship. Realizing this and crying at work has now happened way too often
My writing teacher and mentor told me last time I saw her that I’m very brave. Opening myself to love, after being hurt so many times, trying new activities that scare me, like practicing writing techniques that I have no experience in, joining classes & volunteering for events I know absolutely nothing about. I nearly cried right there when she looked into my face and told me, my posture softening as we sat at that dimly lit restaurant. Her words hung onto me, a clutch of warmth and kindness, enveloping my insides.
I need so much emotional validation - my love language is physical touch and quality time. His is giving gifts, and he’s creative & wonderful at it. But when he finally told me I was special, I knew I’d risked too much. The measures of love that I needed were turned upside down and muddied, I felt the foreboding. We weren’t being who we wanted to be. We tried to please each other in that moment, by not being ourselves. I cried, often weeped, feeling sorry for myself, feeling sorry for him, as I always did, wondering why it’s me me me! Wah womp womp wah. The chip on my shoulder growing, and I asked aloud why no one ever loves me. Not sure any man ever really has.
But “I’m brave” I remember, Heather’s kind voice in my heart. I’ll never regret just trying, and in all honesty, there’s not a single fella I’ve lost that I’d want back in my life. And thank God they release me and remove themselves from what they see clearer than I do, myself. Another year, another set of resolutions that could’ve been made December 6th.
Your relationships will change if you let go of expectations—unless it’s better to walk away. You can’t control others, but you can make yourself happy.
“Focus on people who make you feel loved, connected, cared for, and worthy. Reach out to them and reconnect.”
I have a huge extended family that don’t live near me, but are very communicative over emails, texts, phone calls and social media. In this new year, I want to be in touch with them even more, because 1) they are individually interesting & smart people, and 2) in their own way, are loving beyond measure, whether it’s sending me pictures of their pizza hut meatlovers dinner, or tagging me in pictures of my godson shoveling cake in his face. I surely take them for granted and that needs to change.
Staying touch does not = needy or weak, Gac. Besides, this whole being super independent & not needing anyone shtick is getting rather tiresome.