On vacation! I was nicely distracted by snow and cooking all day. How fabulous! I made some tasty turkey soup, cookies, and beef jerky. No pressure, no rushing, no judgement just a relaxing marvelous time. The snow kept coming steady and fluffy. Around 2pm I took the trash outside. I decided to shovel just a path to the trash can so I didn't create smushed snow packed foot steps. It was so beautiful I ended up shoveling for over an hour and cleaning off the car. I did a little prancing and clapping and giggling as I shoveled. Magical and pulchritudinous (yummy new word).
I heard a couple of cars go by on the unploughed street. They created a phenomenal cushy-woosh sound. BRILLIANT! I could totally imagine the feel of driving... more like floating than driving. We've had one previous storm so far this season with similar driving conditions and ZERO all of last winter.
I had to do it... dangerous or not. Grab the keys, start her up and put my baby in 4WD. I cruised around the neighborhood and up to the grocery store. I was floating, gliding... skimming and occasionally slipping. It was a bit much for some other vehicles who executed a variety of accidental donuts, loopty loops, skids and even two slides right off the road... Yikes! LOVED IT! Sensational! Superb! Divine! (Only five inches but slushy underneath.)
A quote for today and one for yesterday...
"Do not be too timid and squeamish about your actions. All life is an experiment." Emerson
Love that approach. I totally did that already today! Way more fun and interesting when it's not all so cereal. This next one really hit home for me. I fight the bit by bit approach and I think I'm finally growing up enough to know that that is futile... I'm starting my piano practicing again tomorrow!
"In knowing how to overcome little things, a centimeter at a time, gradually when bigger things come, you're prepared." Katherine Dunham.
"You are not here merely to make a living. You are here in order to enable the world to live more amply, with greater vision, with a finer spirit of hope and achievement. You are here to enrich the world, and you impoverish yourself if you forget the errand."
28th President Woodrow Wilson
I've been waking up the last few mornings with vague recollections from dreams. This is fun. I recall this morning that I had made a grand discovery in my dream just before waking. The bits of wisdom I had just figured out in my dreams were still crisp and clean:
Odd graphics if you search Google for "tit for tat." Picture breasts and tattoos. Nothing that represents, even close, the clarity and fairness of the universe once you "get it".
Tit: Unfounded expectation... any expectation really
Get it? I'm grateful and willing to LET GO of those nice bits of TITS for TATS...
I am consummating my ideat to pull and share a wisdom slip from the canister of quotes. I have a small zip lock in the canister with quotes I've already pulled to avoid duplication... So here we go...
"Persons of high self-esteem are not driven to make themselves superior to others; they do not seek to prove their value by measuring themselves against a comparative standard. Their joy is being who they are, not in being better than someone else." Nathaniel Branden
"their joy is being who they are..." that's precisely what I'm playing with. Getting to know myself a bit better and being joyful about that.
Note... I managed to find an inspiring series on demand... the show is called Belief a show worth watching. Check it out.
Yesterday I rescheduled an appointment with a long term client to today. I'm toying with the challenge of a more official ongoing commitment. More on that later.
I'm grateful that I didn't do the Camino de Santiago pilgrimage when the focus was to stop smoking. I may enjoy the journey relative to "If not food & exercise, then what?" as in what will I think about?
I recently applied for a facilitator training program for The Center for Courage & Renewal. It's a year long program which includes two week-long trips, $5000 not including travel. I could spend that money on a trip to Spain and a solo walking journey. There would also be community and transformation. I would need to start preparations now. I would have to schedule the actual trip for a time after the Girl Scout project is complete. I don't think it would work to take a month off in the middle of that... or maybe it would. Who knows. Perhaps I can do both! Imagine that! I can participate in the facilitator training program this year and complete the pilgrimage next year.
Discern - differentiate - judge - recognize - distinguish - discriminate
Journey - a traveling from one place to another, usually taking a rather long time; passage or progress from one stage to another
Aware - having knowledge; conscious; cognizant: informed; alert; knowledgeable; sophisticated:
Regarding the question from yesterday about what will I say to myself each day... what do I want to remind myself of? What could I do or say to remember to be blissful? Today I am amazed by the idea, the realization that I can choose to learn as my journey in this life. That's all. I can skip the rest and there is nothing wrong. I can live in the moment each moment and choose what makes me happy and inspired. I can get a grip and let go of all the expectations and self imposed judgements and shoulds and shouldn'ts.
I choose to create something fun and profound, exciting and inspiring. I will be yanked back and pulled forward - brought to tears and get a stich in my side from laughing. I choose giddy bliss and solemn silent consideration.
I have, already, a quotes canister. I collected quotes for years then printed them out and cut them into tiny slips. They sit folded and waiting, stuffed into a beatiful canister that sits on the kitchen counter. Today's quote: "There are two primary choices in life: to accept conditions as they exist, or accept the responsibility for changing them." Dr. Denis Waitley.
I'm beginning to appreciate the beauty and art of thoughtful intentional repetition. Perhaps I can start off straight away by skipping my resentments around repetition? That would signal a milestone of my journey. Why not?! I say it and it is so!
SKIP: passing from one point, thing, subject, etc., to another, disregarding or omitting any shit that intervenes: OR to go away hastily and secretly; flee without notice.
SYNONYMS: caper, fly, dance, scamper, frisk, leap, bound, skedaddle, hippety-hop, gambol, prance, lope, scoot, flit, spring, skirr, hop, bob, skitter, glance, skim, bolt, leap... and there's more!
What an AWESOME WORD!! It, obviously, continues to bespell me =)
"There's nothing wrong so I'll just hippety-hop past that part!"
Laurie McCauley 12-20-2016
I wish that Weebly didn't display the number of visitors as soon as I login to post an entry. I'm forced to see how low or high or the same the numbers are. It's up to me, of course, what meaning I add to that, but it is right there and I have to decide every time. I do write this for myself and I guess it's time to remind myself of that.
Reminding myself is a good thing. I think I finally was inspired this morning to consider reviewing a morning list of things I'd like to be reminded of. The section of the big book we read this morning includes the bit about milk and whiskey and obsessive jay walkers (around page 32). I sat quietly and listened to the various tales of horror and insanity that comprised life for people before getting sober. As usual I sat there thinking of drinking and I NEVER think of drinking normally. I was ruminating on the value or NOT of meetings where the one thing I can always count on is being reminded of alcohol. John spoke, and put a different spin on it... "I spend my 10 or 15 minutes recalling the horror or listening to others daily. I am powerfully reminded that there is nothing in the world that could make me take the first drink. Then I go about my wonderful life for the rest of the day." So spend a few minutes feeling, remembering, immersed then be grateful and move on.
I've tried various things over time to recite or repeat or say or read on a daily basis and nothing seems to stick for long. I do brush my teeth and poop daily so I could incorporate something partnered with those activities. The power of an AA meeting: it is naturally different and unique on a daily basis and it's in someone else's voice. I do feel that I had a mini breakthrough though around the power of repetition.
I also had a breakthrough again this morning about the need to focus on alinement. Alinement and that's ALL. ALL there is to do is be aware, surrender and remember. There's nothing wrong, I'm safe, nothing can ultimately hurt me, there's only things to learn. Breathe deep and dig in. Get a grip and let go! All of the urgency and judgement.... especially the feelings of necessary "efficiency or death" can take off.
I am creating an undivided self. So far that is the most powerful experience I have yet to feel on this planet. Complete alinement is something to seek on it's own. Maybe that's my purpose? Guess what, it is if I say it is, so, why not? If it doesn't serve to increase my alinement or definitely fall into something I'm already alined with I can skip it. That's all, just skip it.
There's nothing wrong, I don't have to feel bad or guilty or explain or defend just skip it.
"I think I'll skip that this time." "Don't mind skipping that, no worries."
Like the button in the software program installation process... "SKIP" means move forward without consequences. Maybe come back to it later, maybe not. I like that, I can also frisk and romp and bounce and cavort! "Sorry, I'm gonna prance!" maybe that's where the slang "I'm gonna bounce." came from. Love it... it's challenging NOT to apologize, notice that?
SKIP DEFINED: move along lightly, stepping from one foot to the other with a hop or bounce.
synonyms:caper, prance, trip, dance, bound, bounce, gambol, frisk, romp, cavort
I'm thinking right now this entry is too long. It's silly and obsessive. I'm also thinking how fun!! I had no idea what a great word skip is. I'm going to prance past those first thoughts. =)
More definitions: to jump lightly over: to pass over without reading, noting, acting, (He skipped the bad parts.) to miss or omit (My heart skipped a beat.); to be absent from; avoid attendance at: (To skip a school class.) to send (a missile) ricocheting along a surface. Informal. to leave hastily and secretly or to flee from (a place): (They skipped town.)
I like the more positive definitions... I skipped the party. I didn't avoid it. I chose not to act (skipped) that...reaction, invitation, comment, etc.) How funny this reminds me of an old boyfriend... Skip Towne. Are you still in Nashville? Loved your hilarious songs and sense of humor!
So I can prance or bounce or pull out a frisky romp on by things that don't aline or that I'm not sure about. The process to figure out what alinement is involves writing and community. OH... and the topic of the post, I need to be OK, THERE'S NOTHING WRONG WITH FEELING UNCOMFORTABLE! I think that's actually an odd, paradoxical part of the learning process.
PS. I've managed to disable the spell check somehow... I apologize if there are silly spelling errors. Oh well!
PPS. The blue bird is a grab shot by Chris. NICE! We've had a few little tribes of blue birds stopping by for suet the last few days.
Isn't it funny... I'm feeling isolated and alone at the moment. This time last year I was complaining about making small talk. So if I'm surrounded by people that's one type of isolation and being actually physically alone that's another type of aloneness. I have begun to believe that being alone is really my preferred state. Chris is awesome, we share our aloneness with each other. Perfect.
OK let's restart this... a definition is a good place to begin. What is alone?
Alone: separate, apart, isolated, solitary
Isolated: separated from other persons or things
Psychology: a person, often shy or lacking in social skills, who avoids the company of others and has no friends within a group.
I am speaking of aloneness in the last way, no friends within a group. There are various elements to explore... the idea that isolation is a choice. There is fear involved. There is a new skill set needed. You have to be vulnerable and open... surrender, I guess. Surrender is my motto so this is yet another way to put myself out there so to speak. I have a fear of being hurt. There is a history there. You can have a bad track record picking friends just like you would picking romatic partners. Pay attention to intuition! In my efforts to avoid being needy I seem to attract people who use me or are needy. Does that compute at some therapist level?
This whole conversation was ignited by a passage from Step 12, page 117 "A.A. had a very special meaning. Through it we begin to learn right relations with people who understand us; we don't have to be alone any more." I went out of my comfort zone and shared that I feel alone. It brought me to tears. Tears of sadness? Tears of relief? Not sure... I realized I wanted to hide as soon as I was done speaking. What would happen next? What would I say if people came up to me? How would it feel to be the subject of interest? Good grief!! The response was nice. Several women came up to me afterward and invited me to parties and/or shared their contact info with me. I reminded myself that I am safe and there's nothing wrong. Maybe I don't have to be so cyncial. Maybe there is someone that I can confide in and share with that I don't have to pay for their time.
Expectations: I want to feel safe, respected, engaged, listened to, cared for, challenged, helpful, caring, respectful.
I want a chance to practice the rule... treat others as you want to be treated.
It feels like the Holidays. It's the cold weather that will do that for me. Snow helps too but isn't necessary, absolutely. I did live in Venice Beach for 10 years... I still had enjoyable Christmassy Christmasses.
I'm struggling to come up with anything interesting today. I just happen to have the time and I feel like writing. I've been listening to Mike Dooley's Life on Earth Master Classes online. I'm enjoying the validation. I don't find that it's anything really earthshattering or new information but basic repetition is good. And from a new different source makes it interesting and curious from a different perspective.
I get to go shopping for presents today and I'm really looking forward to it. Crowds and tight parking is all part of the fun. Gotta run. Oh, also, check this out for a good belly laugh! You Tube SURPRISE!
I was listening to random TED Talks this morning and something in Leila Hoteit talk got me to thinking about memory and memorable. Two main but very different ideas to write about today.
Memorable... maybe my memory is fine, I'm just not engaged in doing much of anything worth remembering?
Memorable - I have this week of time when I planned to be out of the country. Now what do I do with the time? Yesterday I felt good about the time spent. I started and completed an online defensive driving course that will save me money and took more time than I would normally spend. I also completed the next step for the Girl Scout project that I had procrastinated about. Finally I cleaned out and organized ALL my email and online Google drive files and folders! I felt good about it at the end of the day and I feel good about it again today.
So much so that this morning I thought to myself... what can I do today that will make me feel good tomorrow and be fun today? For some reason that is a new thought for me... Write and read came to mind. I only have a ton of books to read. And, OMG, I could use that walking machine and music stand (that I bought and is now in the basement). Wow, I'd feel really great then!
Is this normal? That these things are just now occurring to me? Just curious.
I got off the scale this morning, a couple pounds up, and thought about how good I felt all day when I was a couple pounds DOWN. I then realized that when I indulge or not in food... I'm not depriving myself by curbing my appetite... I'm trading pleasures. I can choose the food in the moment or the good feeling of loosing a pound or two. It's just a choice, not good or bad, right or wrong. Wild, huh!?
Yesterday at approximately 5:15am I experienced a crazy angry - panick - attacky vibe. I was standing at the United Airlines Ticket Counter line in Albany International Airport. Chris had just pulled away from the curbside drop off and I was focusing on remaining totally calm as people in front of me jockeyed for position at the checkin terminals and juggled or struggled with all their various bags and paraphernalia. As I grew near the front of the queue I decided I'd better go ahead and pull out my confirmation number and ID. I unzipped my walet and easily found the printed page with loads of scribbles that had the confirm #. The color copy of my passport that I had geniously created late last night was also front and center. One must have a copy of your passport. It was on my to do list, one of the last things I remembered to do. At any rate, there it is. What is MISSING is the original passport. Still tucked between the lid and glass of my scanner printer safely at home.
WHAT??!!! SHIT FUCK DAMN! You can imagine, if you take a moment, my surprise, anger, disbelief, frustration... is this registering with you? Can you feel it? The pit in my stomach was enormous, I was shaking and flushed. Are you kidding me? The ONE thing I can't be without?! It took a minute, maybe less, for all these emotions and thoughts to rush through me. I was now at the front of the line and - miracle of miracle - another flight leaves at 10 am and connecting through DC will get me there no problem. I have Chris on the phone... please rush home and get my passport. It's impossible for him to get back in time (40 minute round trip) to check in for the original flight but the one at 10am is no problem.
I hang up the phone, get an Americano from Dunkin Donuts (not bad actually), pee and prepare to wait for Chris' passport rescue mission return. I've been talking about this trip for weeks. I made the reservations to meet my friend, Joyce, at her timeshare in Hotel Marina El Cid Spa & Beach Resort near Cancun Mexico in October. I was looking forward to the trip, "girls only" time. I wasn't hugely excited or enthusiastic my last experience in the area was not great... a cruise to Cosumel turned into a 2 year plus ongoing nightmare. A story for another day. I feel fat too, not exactly the frame of mind for flourishing and flaunting of swim suits and sundresses. I also don't lay out in the sun, I drown myself in sunscreen (I had melanoma, hello!) and I don't drink. What the heck will we do? Joyce did make reservations for fabulous activities... swiming with dolphins, touring some ruins (saw those in Cosumel), and running around some island La Muera. Sorry, still not terribly excited. I kept trying to picture how we would interact and hang out. I figured there wouldn't be much sleep at night... surf sounds and snoring and all. I promised, if impuslively, and here I am, still astonished beyond belief that I managed to leave the FUCKING PASSPORT in the printer/copier! Chris had even asked me if I had it as we left the house. "Sure! Check!"
All the travelers had cleared out once I returned to the ticket counter. The UA staff were chatty and nice... apparently my 10am departure was delayed and I'd miss my connection in DC. Strike TWO... I'm starting to think this is just not meant to happen and these pretty astonishing signs from the Universe should not be ignored. William peristed to make valiant efforts to get me "out of town." Unfortunately the options included additional stops and layovers and plane and airline changes. I refuse to make this whole enigmatic trip crazy difficult. I'll be so pissed by the time I get there I'll just be detoxing by the time I come back next Saturday. Sorry Joyce.
It also didn't feel right to change it and do this whole 3am run around tomorrow. They did have my original trip same time Sunday. I already didn't sleep Friday night in anticipation for this morning... leaving tomorrow would mean two nights with no sleep. Once again my quality of life was questionable. Sleep is important. More than that it felt "OFF." In the past if I don't listen to my intuition I'm generally very sorry. Ok, so finally I just told William... to CANCEL IT altogether. No sooner were the words out of my mouth than a HUGE wave of relief washed over me. NO SHIT... It was almost palpable like a warm, calming ocean wave, I could feel tingles and I started sighing deeply. Wow! Was I that torn about going all along? What's up with this? No guilt, no worries about money or cancelled activities - no stress only deliverance from some unseen weight. The guilt came later. when I had to text Joyce that I wasn't coming. In the moment there was only ease and a very unexpected bewildering comfort.
That's all for now folks. One very strange Non-Trip to Mexico and the unexpected relief of it all.
Laurie Anne McCauley
Did that make you feel better?
I decided back in November 2015 to make my poetry available and journal online. I'm not exactly sure what "blogging" means but I am quite sure this is an online journal. Feel free to read on with an aire of open minded curiosity. At no time do I intend to offend, judge or pretend to know anything really, I'm just an observer and explorer, as we all are. Feel free to "boldly go" through my observations and perhaps it will spark or inspire. Comments are off because I don't want to be worried about political correctness when I'm writing. I'm not thinking about "you." I'm just writing because it feels "right". Feel free to enjoy or surf on.
Fibber McGee's closet!