Monthly Archives: February 2007

Create a Connection — Getting to Know You Day


Me at oh, two or so…

Create a Connection Getting to Know You Day

1a. What is one thing about your body that you hate, deny, talk trash about?

I live in my head. I think a lot of the time I end up denying that my body even exists. I tend to ignore it, not give it the exercise it needs, and feed it crap instead of good food. My body lets me down a lot, getting sick, not feeling good, etc, and I let it down in return. I need to focus on being more in touch with my body and giving it what it really needs, not just what I want at the moment. I wouldn’t say that I hate any part of my body or deny it or trash talk about it. It’s more just not giving it what it needs that is the problem.

I guess what I deny is what others probably think of me since I don’t get the manicures, pedicures, hairstyles, and other “girl” things I’m supposed to, or care about fashion or appearances. And it’s not even that I deny it – I just really don’t care what other people think about me anymore. I’ve gotten too far beyond that to even bother with it.

1b. What can you do to make friends with this part and show it a little love?

I’m currently reading “Coming Home to Your Body” by Carmen Renee Berry, and getting lots of ideas on how to be more in touch with my body and take better care of it, which is one of my goals for the year. I’m dealing with my health issues and getting more proactive about taking care of myself.

2a. What is one thing about your home that doesn’t feel good?

It’s full of smelly teenage and young adult boys. Well, only two of them, but it feels like too many.

2b. What is one thing you can do to change that?

Keep pushing them to go to school and get educated so they can grow up and get outta here. Until then, I just close their doors. And make them bathe and clean their rooms.

3a. Is there a relationship that you have difficulty with?

I have difficulty with most relationships. I’m not good about calling people or asking for help or for what I need in a relationship, and I’m not good about being there for other people all the time. My friendships tend to be casual and loosely connected right now.

3b. What is something small you can do to either salvage it or come to terms with the way it is now?

Most of my problem is I have come to terms with how I am, and am not at all unhappy about it. I’ve become very self-contained and independent, even more so than I’ve always been. I’m actually far more frustrated when I do need someone’s help, especially when I’m not getting it. I need to get better about making my needs known. And I need to be more open to being there for other people and mostly letting them know I AM available, but they have to ask.

4a. Is there something you are afraid to do, but would like to try it?

No. I’m not afraid of anything anymore, really. It’s mostly a matter of not wanting to do anything, or sometimes not knowing how I can do it right now….

4b. What can you do to begin a plan to try it?

Oh, I plan to do things. Like have my golden retriever ranch. I got my current puppy, Darwin, to train as a therapy dog, and eventually want to have a ranch with the space to rescue goldens and raise and train therapy dogs. But living in suburbia right now with no space to do the things I want to do is frustrating.

Yamas

A yama (Sanskrit), literally a “restraint”, is a rule or code of conduct for living virtuously. The yamas comprise the “shall-nots” in our dealings with the external world.

Ten Yamas are codified as “the restraints” in numerous scriptures including the Shandilya and Varaha Upanishads, the Hatha Yoga Pradipika by Gorakshanatha, and the Tirumantiram of Tirumular. Patañjali lists only five yamas in his Yoga Sutras.

Nonviolence, honesty, nonstealing, moderation, nonhoarding.

Ahimsa: abstinence from injury, harmlessness, the not causing of pain to any living creature in thought, word, or deed at any time.
Satya: truthfulness, word and thought in conformity with the facts.
Asteya: non-stealing, non-coveting, non-entering into debt.
Brahmacharya: divine conduct, continence, celibate when single, faithful when married.
Aparigraha: absence of avariciousness, non-appropriation of things not one’s own.

“The yamas are in many ways the hardest work on this path, for they confront us with the enormous challenge of re-channeling our spiritual energies…. Before encountering the yamas, we are prey to the whims of our minds. Our minds tell us we are good, so we feel good, our minds tell us we are bad, so we feel bad. Our orientation is outward; we continuously compare ourselves to others, and most of the time we find ourselves lacking. We search outside ourselves for the validation we crave. And since we have no control over this validation, we can never truly be at peace or gain access to our true power in this life…. The yamas are the fundamental renunciation of a life based on fear. They are the change. — Rolf Gates Meditations from the Mat

Am I missing you?

I get a lot of comment spam. So, I moderate comments. Sometimes, your comment may slip through the cracks and I will lose it in the spam… sorry about that… I think I lost a couple tonight…

Just so you know, once you’ve left an approved comment here, you won’t be moderated any more. I wish I had a better solution, but I dislike capchas and just haven’t found a better way to do this.

And yes, I use Akismet. Usually, if I lose something, it’s something I notice too late in the Akismet spam and I don’t save it before I hit that delete all button…

Sigh.

Importance

“Much of our energy goes into upholding our importance. If we were capable of losing some of that importance, two extraordinary things would happen to us. One, we would free our energy from trying to maintain the illusory idea of our grandeur; and two, we would provide ourselves with enough energy to catch a glimpse of the actual grandeur of the universe.” — Carlos Castenada

Here is the essence of aparigraha, the yama that invites us to let go of the false self and all its symbols. As long as we are holding onto the thoughts and symbols of the false self, we are blocked from the sunlight of the spirit. — Rolf Gates, Meditations from the Mat

“Normal day, let me be aware of the treasure you are. Let me not pass you by in quest of some rare and perfect tomorrow.” — Mary Jane Irion, Yes World

ooh, yummy – barium milkshake!

Actually, it’s not half bad. Anyway, had to go get my innards looked at today. That was fun. Hopefully they’ll figure out what’s causing my anemia soon and I can feel better again – at least until I get my next package from the “disease of the month” club!

UPDATE:

Well, nothing wrong with my stomach. On to the next test…

Boneyard

There are two times of the year when my garden pretty much looks empty. In the fall, when I clean out summer’s overgrowth, and now, beginning of spring, when I clean out what winter has managed to damage. This year we got a severe freeze several nights in a row in December, so there was a lot of damage. So it’s been several weeks now of cutting back and clearing out, and I’ve still got a bit to go. I have just gotten to fertilizing the roses – twice now for some of them, since Darwin and Chance decided the organic fertilizer with bone meal in it was like little doggie crack. So we re-built the barricades today – a four foot high green plastic fence stapled to stakeposts. We’ll see if it keeps them out this time or if they find a way in again.

I spent most of the afternoon clearing out the front yard, cleaning up borders that have barely seen sunlight for the last year but are now bare thanks to the freeze. So now the bones of the garden are bare, and I find I kind of like it. I have some daffodils coming up, and find little bulb surprises popping up here and there under the dead branches as I clear them out. It’s nice to see those little colorful blooms, to be reminded that in a couple months all this will be lush and green for many months again, before summer’s dry spell turns it brown and I’m back to trimming it out again.

I love to garden but have tired of my little suburban lot. I long for my golden ranch, with a real, big vegetable garden, with real soil, instead of a foot of soil on top of decomposed granite — fenced from the dogs, please — and lots of woods and meadows and a pond.

But for now, it’s finding the bones in the boneyard.

Instant Karma

The “Instant Karma” mix is on now….

Instant karma’s gonna get you now
Gonna knock you right on the head
You better get yourself together
Pretty soon you’re gonna be dead
What in the world you thinking of
Laughing in the face of love
What on earth you tryin’ to do
Its up to you, yeah you

Instant karmas gonna get you
Gonna look you right in the face
Better get yourself together darlin’
Join the human race
How in the world you gonna see
Laughin at fools like me
Who in the hell you think you are
A super star
Well, right you are

Well we all shine on
Like the moon and the stars and the sun
Well we all shine on
Everyone come on

Instant karmas gonna get you
Gonna knock you off your feet
Better recognize your brothers
In everyone you meet
Why in the world are we here
Surely not to live in pain and fear
Why on earth are you there
When you’re everywhere
Come and get your share

Well we all shine on
Like the moon and the stars and the sun
Yeah we all shine on
Come on and on and on on on …

— John Lennon

You've Got to Have Friends…

And I am all alone
There is no one here beside me
And my problems have all gone
There is no one to deride me

But you got to have friends
The feeling’s oh so strong
You go to have friends
To make that day last long
I had some friends but they’re gone
Someone came and took them away
And from the dusk till the dawn
Here is where I’ll stay

Standing at the end of the road, boys
Waiting for my new friends to come
I don’t care if I’m hungry or bored
I’m gonna get me some of them…

Bette Midler, “You’ve Got to Have Friends”

I’ve had so many difficulties with friends letting me down in the past, and I really got to the point where I just didn’t really care any more whether or not I had friends around. I’ve been envious of others’ friendships at times, although I have “forever friends” who will always be there for me.

I have one of those rare evenings alone tonight, with all the boys out of the house, so I’ve got my “Sister’s Mix” CD on, the music cranked up, and am enjoying this collection of songs I’ve put together about sisterhood for when I feel lonely. My own sister was six years older than me, and had her bipolar episodes starting in her teens, so we never really got to have a strong relationship. I wasn’t really close to my mom either, since she tended to be hypercritical of me. I related much more strongly to my dad, and to men in general, and seem to understand them so much better than women. I never got the way women could be so catty to each other and still claim to be friends, the way my best friend turned on me and refused to speak to me.

So do I have to have friends? Well of course, and I do. But not the kind of friends I call on the spur of the moment, or when I’m upset about things. I have friends I see at pretty carefully arranged times and places, when I am in control of who I am and in control of the situation. I work very hard these days to make sure people don’t see me in any out of control moments — an artifact of the bipolar manic episodes I had. I don’t have those moments now, but I need to be sure nobody sees me that way ever again, knowing that there are so few who could understand it, and fewer still who tolerate it and would stay with me no matter what.

I think if you’ve never had the experience of someone literally just shutting you out of their life forever, you can’t possibly understand what a painful, hurtful thing it is to do to someone else. Perhaps that’s why those people found it easy to do to me, but, it’s something I will never do to someone else, ever. I understand that people have to have friends — real friends, not those who simply say they are or who are only there for the good times, then walk away when things get tough.