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Heidi

Heidi: Hashtag Challenge

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I don't have a clue when I last posted -- I know that the #BigHeavyWeight of it all wrapped itself around my shoulders on June 19 and I have been working my way through a bit of hell ever since. Anton Chekhov wrote that "Any idiot can handle a crisis. It's the day to day living that wears you out." And I've had about three weeks of living in that space. The good news is that I am brave enough to say I'm tired, brave enough to quit pretending all is well, brave enough to rest and to begin to heal. Another wonderful man once said "This is not the end, and not even the beginning of the end, but it might be the end of the beginning." #KeepSwimming

 

My employment ended on June 3o, the afternoon after a demonstration by a company that can do everything I do, only from India. I texted my partner that I was pretty certain that I was going to be outsourced, and sure enough, I was shown the door the next day. #MoreTimeToWrite.

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#Writing: After attending the Tinker Mountain Writers Workshop, I've decided to formalize my path as a writer. This is weird and vulnerable and scary for me. I need to keep a log of pieces that I have submitted (a New Thing That Just Happened on Monday) and pieces that need rework. I hope to have a submission, rework and new work every day, along with reading. Stay tuned. Feel free to check out my progress in my tracking spreadsheet (two tabs).

 

#Mediation certification: I will be taking the Domestic Violence and the Family seminar on July 21, and then the Family Mediation Training in Richmond in August (next challenge). I'm still waiting to make progress on the General Court observation, but it will come in due time. The Family Mediation Certification will likely come at the end of August (also next challenge). It feels good to have progress on this.

 

#Communication with Vivian. My daily calls with my daughter were suspended when we went to court on July 6. This hurts, and she was in tears over it. We go back to court in September (two challenges from now, I think, but maybe three -- this is how I measure things). I'm now limited to calling on Monday and Wednesday, which doesn't really make any sense, since the argument they presented was that I was inappropriate on the phone, so why would it be ok to be inappropriate two times a week? #MovingOn. When we were on the phone on Monday, we started talking about the garden and how it's coming along and she got a little sad. I said I could send her pictures, and she brightened up and said she would love that. So there it is, in the midst of the dark, the single star to guide me through. I wrote her a Garden Report and included a garden word search along with the pictures I took and mailed it yesterday. I'm going to write her every day, including a puzzle or coloring page or whathaveyou. And then I'm going to write my pen pal, who is in prison. #SnailMailRules

 

#Self-care 

  • Nightly sleep I need to take care of myself by making certain I'm getting enough rest. If I'm worn out and exhausted, I can't be a good student / parent / friend. I need to be in bed no later than 9 p.m. 
  • Daily Sauna or hot bath
  • Daily Meetings Reason 417 that not having a job is grand for me is that I get to return to my lunchtime meeting. It meets at 12:15 seven days a week, and I'm thinking of adding Saturday to the mix when my partner has overtime or a seminar. It fits perfectly after my writing workshop meeting at 9:30 at the local library, and then the Friends Meeting every Sunday.
  • Water reestablish the habit.
  • Walking. My steps fell to hell as the office job progressed. I went from a ten mile a day habit to barely a mile, and lost the habit of walking thirty minutes every day as well. I'm hoping to put it back. 
     

#FinancialPlanning with the attorney: Financial worry is soul-crushing. I recently read a report on the effects of poverty sapping nearly an entire standard deviation from a person's intelligence, and I can completely believe that. The mental peace that will come from financial clarity is huge. I have until July 31 to wrap this up, and am hoping that it will be done much sooner than that. It's only waiting on me at this point, so pester me for updates.

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Following, of course. Not sure where to begin though, there's so much to comment. Sad to read about the work situation and despite your positivety, writing, mediation etc there's still a financial issue to deal with. I can relate to how soul-crusing that can be, also between jobs at the moment and struggling with finances, not to mention sudden expenses such as the washing machine breaking down.

 

On to more interesting things, while in Ireland last week I visited a museum/library of manuscripts. Looking at the Eastern stuff, Taoist texts especially, made me think f you. There was a sign explaining the basic concepts and relationship between Bhuddism, Taoism and Confucianism which was really helpful. All that "go with the flow" stuff gave me a better understanding into the way you deal with things. Not sure if I could let go to such an extent though.

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Today's Meditation

 

Happiness is our birthright.

The decision to be happy is our to make, every day, when confronted with any experience. Too many of us grew up believing that life needed to be a certain way for us to be happy. We looked for the right lover, the right job, the right dress. We looked outside ourselves for the key to happiness -- to no avail.

 

Happiness lies within.

We must encourage it to spring forth. But first we need to believe that happiness is fully within our power. We must trust that the most difficult circumstances won't keep it from us when we have learned to tap the source within.

 

Life is a gift we are granted moment by moment.

Let us be in awe of the wonder of it, then revel in it. We can marvel at creation for a moment and realize how special we are to be participants.

Happiness will overcome us if we let it. We can best show our gratitude for the wonder of this gift by smiling within and without.

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I just got a personal call from the director of Queens University at Charlotte.

I have been accepted into the MFA program in creative writing, and I begin in September.

Let the wild rumpus start!!

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Not even a whole day after acceptance, self-doubt and fear are trying to worm their way back into the driver's seat.No, no, and no.

In an effort to let them have their way without letting it hobble me, I'm posting the comments of the review committee here, and possibly on my mirror as well. And on the refrigerator. And on the teapot.

 

They said my submitted works "are admirable for their intellectual substance, strong storytelling and spirit of curiosity. A reader would be rewarded by reading anything this writer set her mind to write about. While the forms and subjects change from piece to piece, the good humor, wit and skepticism are evident in every line."

 

Just wow.

 

Now I feel Royal.

 

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So very happy for you, Heidi. You can rock the writing of that I have no doubt.

 

The phone call limitation is indeed weird. I could hear your sarcasm in the lines you wrote! But you have ways to overcome the distance between you two and the garden report is a great idea.

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Saturday movie at the Grandin Theatre in the Village and then a tour through the furniture store where we found a super cool tic tac toe set. We dropped by Linda's used bookstore and then went to a puzzle room put on by the library. 
A good time was had by all.
 
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It's been a heck of a hot weekend and beginning to the week -- today is the ninth day in a row that temperatures have been over 90 degrees, and it doesn't look as though there will be a break yet; highs are forecast in the nineties through July 25th. This always leaves me feeling bloated and stretched and unable to think; air conditioning provides slight respite at best, not actual relief. I found that time in the sauna and boatloads of watermelon seem to have a meaningful effect, though, and by this evening I was starting to feel a bit more human once more.

 

I spent some time doing climate change research, a favorite topic, and land research, another old fave, and it ended up turning into a "Hey, you know what would make a cool story. . . . " So I have a few pages sketching a premise-ish of a novel. I have no idea where it is going or why, but you know, these things happen in their own way.

 

I haven't submitted anything as yet this week for publication. I'm giving myself permission to back off the pressure a bit, as there is plenty that needs doing in order to clear the deck (and the desk) for the coming term.

 

So far this week I have:

  1. Submitted the lion's share of required Bankruptcy paperwork. Final paperwork and information to be determined by the paralegal and filing funds to be delivered next week.
  2. Registered for Family Mediation seminars in Richmond, one for all day Friday and one for August 9-11.
  3. Replaced the windshield in the jeep and got the throttle cleaned -- that seems to have fixed the chugging issue she was having.
  4.  Written pages even when I don't know what is going on with them.
  5. Filed for unemployment
  6. Not freaked out, mostly, which is harder than it sounds when I don't have a job.

I still need to finish up the paper for Coogan that lingers from Spring term. I haven't found the books for that yet, but it's all in progress. I think I'm going to mail him the pages that I have and let him know that I'm stepping back to regroup, just so he knows that I'm not screwing around and ignoring the whole thing. It's going to be delivered by the end of August in any event.

 

~ B r e a t h e ~

 

Namaste, y'all.

 

 

 

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Lettuces, Cucumbers and Herbs, O My!
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Playing catch with a green tomato that fell off the vine.

 

We got the first of the lettuce, and the herbs are coming along well. The tomatoes have overrun their cages, and I have no recourse other than to wish them well. There will be a large harvest soon from them. The first yellow grape tomatoes we're full of sunshiney goodness.
 
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There are also the beginnings of pumpkins, which tickle us no end.
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The Origins of Flowers

 

In my native land of Turkey, there are beautiful flowers -- lilacs and tulips and more. I know; I know: you thought lilacs were English, and everyone knows that tulips come from Holland. But no.

 

So be still a moment. Forget what you think you know about the origins of flowers and the origins of anything else and be still. Listen.

 

In my native land of Turkey, there are beautiful flowers. They bloom almost all year long and fill the air with the playfulness of their scent, here and then gone on a breeze, off to dance with someone else, just as lovely and lively as ever. This promiscuity of scent weaves thickly amongst the stalls without stopping too long at any one, lingering only to caress. In the marketplace, the flowers blend with the spices, cardamom being my favorite; the colors of the wares and garments only add to the richness of the day, a vibrant melody to the beat of commerce.

 

Like the tulip, I too was plucked up by a well-meaning meddlesome white man and transported to places I had only heard of, lands as unimaginable and as unattainable as the djinn in tales told at my bedside by our nanny as she tucked in each night.

 

I was wholly unprepared for the cold.

 

I like to imagine that the tulip and the lilac, my sisters in this shocking relocation, were likewise caught unawares by the weather. Like them, I have found a way to turn the cold to its own special season of comfort, of inwardness, of gathering inside for the coming season. I was astonished by snow so completely that I had no choice but to fall in love with it wholeheartedly.

 

It was the rain that nearly did me in.

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I'm a little lost. You're not actually descended from Turkey, are you? Is this some new narrative/writing that you've been working on?

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On 7/21/2017 at 5:02 AM, DarK_RaideR said:

I'm a little lost. You're not actually descended from Turkey, are you? Is this some new narrative/writing that you've been working on?

Nope, not Turkish at all; I'm so American I don't even have a passport.

 

Yes, this was a little bit of fiction that fell out of my fingers on Thursday morning.

Sorry for the confusion!!

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After 15 days in a row in excess of 90 degree heat, and the sixth in a row of ninety-five plus, I think I'm getting used to it. I actually feel more comfortable with the air conditioning off, the windows open, and the ceiling fan moving the air about a bit.

Of course, it could just be that I've lost my mind, but either way, I'm comfortable.

I made macaroni salad. It got a lot bigger than I thought it would, but it's delicious. The dressing has fresh basil, dill and oregano from the garden, and the salad has cucumbers carrots, peas, celery and red onion. This is summer.
 

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