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SkyGirl

Lightbearer: Liminal

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LIGHTBEARER: BOOK ONE

Chapter Five: Liminal

 

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"What's your name, miss?"

 

Now was as good a time to try it out as any. I didn't lift my gaze from the row of fruits arranged neatly under my fingertips. "Iyashi."

 

"Can I have these delivered somewhere for you, Miss Iyashi?"

 

"No thanks, I'll carry them myself."

 

"So many?"

 

"I can carry them."

 

Iyashi. I tasted the word softly on my tongue, and I thought I liked it. It fit better with the new Oriental clothes I had draped softly around my body, and the wrap I had wound around my head for privacy. Lately I hadn't been sure exactly how to think of myself - I thought when I returned home to Middle Earth for a long weekend, I would easily fit back in with my family and friends and the rolling woodlands of home; but instead, I had felt like a foreigner, a traveler from another land. And as disconcerting as that was, it wasn't nearly as upsetting as stepping out of the public carriage and back onto the Temple mainland, where the smells and sounds that should have been familiar felt jarring and threatening. I didn't feel at home in either world - I was caught in the in-between space and didn't know how to get out.

 

Nor did I know who I was now that the Dark Elf and all he had meant to me were no longer a combative voice outside me, but a force of anger and fear pulsing through my veins every day. Life was easy when I was the good and righteous one who fought against the dark and evil enemy. But it was a different thing altogether to realize that I was loved, but still afraid; good, but still angry; holy, but still selfish; kind, but still judgmental. The Silver Archer's duties were still my mission: To heal, to love, to encourage, to bring light and truth, to bring seeking souls home to the King. But I didn't know if I was living up to the Silver Archer's name anymore. How different was too different to still be the Silver Archer?

 

I shouldered the bag of apples and my Bow, and turned away to leave the market and head back toward my little home. For now, I was going to try being Iyashi, the quiet writer who sat in the back of the Chief Scientist's office, and see what happened as I went about my daily tasks. In my weakened, introspective state, I was vulnerable - I could get sick, fall in with enemy forces, get waylaid by bandits or lose sight of my mission. I needed to protect myself while I waited to see who I was becoming and who the new Silver Archer would be. Who she wanted to be.

 

I pulled my hood up over my head and struck out into the damp woods.

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8 hours ago, SkyGirl said:

Nor did I know who I was now that the Dark Elf and all he had meant to me were no longer a combative voice outside me, but a force of anger and fear pulsing through my veins every day. Life was easy when I was the good and righteous one who fought against the dark and evil enemy. But it was a different thing altogether to realize that I was loved, but still afraid; good, but still angry; holy, but still selfish; kind, but still judgmental. The Silver Archer's duties were still my mission: To heal, to love, to encourage, to bring light and truth, to bring seeking souls home to the King. But I didn't know if I was living up to the Silver Archer's name anymore. How different was too different to still be the Silver Archer?

 

You have always been the Silver Archer. Just because it's harder now doesn't make you any less worthy to wield that bow.

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You are still the lightbearer. Just becuase you have accepted the truth about yourself it does not mean you are weak. Indeed, you are stronger, because accepting your true nature has wiped away your self deception that ignored certain weaknesses. You FEEL different now, and that's because you are seeing yourself as you truly are. It's the illusion that's gone, not your strength. 

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9 hours ago, SkyGirl said:

loved, but still afraid; good, but still angry; holy, but still selfish; kind, but still judgmental.

 

I love the phrasing on this line so much <3

 

you can do this, mon amie!

 

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WHAT IS UP WITH SKY????

 

This is a VERY good question!!

 

I missed the first week (well, and also Week Zero, so two weeks) of the challenge because I went home over Memorial Day; and I was unpleasantly surprised and jarred when I no longer felt the pure relief of arriving home after an absence, but instead felt like a visitor in a place where things were only partly familiar.  :(  I know this is a totally normal step in adjusting to a new place; but when I left my home state and arrived back in my new home state, the moment I stepped onto the train, I was surprised by overwhelming anxiety and panic. The smells of the train station, the unavoidable weird people, the weirdness of being yanked from one home, to the other home, and back to the other home again - it was a strangely panicky experience and I did not expect it to be that way.

 

Another thing throwing me off was that I really just ... don't have goals right now.  :(  I have things I know I need to work on (cooking better, budgeting better, building good spiritual disciplines, getting my butt to the gym or the mat), but I don't have any concrete steps on how to get there. I'm really lacking in energy and drive at the moment. 

 

So then add in the fact that I don't really know what to do with Sky now that she's gone through this metamorphosis, and I've been a bit paralyzed on my challenge writing.  :D  But a couple of my favorite Rangers reached out to nudge me and encourage me to make a thread even if I didn't know where it was going; so I finally finished the narrative I've been tinkering with all week, and here I am. 

 

I think I'm going to start today with the things that I know I want to work on, and then work on the steps to get there:

 

JUST MOVE. I know I'm not the only one to ever experience wanting very much to work out, but then just ... not.  :)  But just like the other good self-care things that take a little effort, I feel ever so much better when I do move, even something gentle like yoga, stretching or walking. It's worth that extra effort.

 

EAT A SALAD. Yes, that's an Endgame reference.  :)  Actually, I just need to eat more variety, period. I have about three hot recipes that I switch between; and for cold stuff, I make giant fruit-and-vegetable smoothies and then drink those along with a sandwich or something. My diet is lame. And just like getting more movement into my life, I know I'll feel better if I get some more ingredients into my life. Man does not live by rice and peaches alone.

 

SHOW ME THE MONEY. I constantly find myself surprised by the amount of money I have in my bank account at the end of each pay period, and I don't mean that as a good surprise. I need to know where my money is going, so I can make sure it's not going to stupid stuff, and is instead going to good stuff, like saving for a piano or buying nice furniture and concert tickets. 

 

REMEMBER WHAT YOU HAVE LEARNED. This one is pretty vague, but I would really like to take more time to read my Bible and other spiritual books, and incorporate them better into my daily life. I found a book that I'm very excited about with lots of prayers for daily life, and I want to buy that and post those prayers around my house as daily helps to integrate the spiritual and the mundane.

 

EMPTY YOUR HEAD. Sometimes my head feels like it's full of bees and I just have so much I want to say, but while I've talked about writing magazine articles, or starting a blog, or something where I could get all those thoughts out, I haven't done anything about it. I chew on it for a few days (or rant at a helpless friend!) and then forget about it. That's kind of a shame and I'd like to try sharing more of these buzzy thoughts.

 

SLEEP. Said in Mantis' voice. My average amount of sleep per night is around 6 hours; yet on weekends, I consistently sleep 8 hours in a night. That means I'm at a deficit for 6 out of 7 days of every week, and - what kind of way is that to live?? I'm not sure how to balance the need for creative rest time with the need for 8 hours of sleep, but I freaking need more sleep.

 

Yes, I know those are more like Big Life Goals than challenge goals.  :D  My next task is to find some small steps toward those goals that I can work on this month. That shall be my next task.

 

Oh, and this beautiful gentleman:

 

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This is Run Yu / Dragon Fairy / Night Immortal, from the Chinese TV show I'm hooked on lately ("Ashes of Love" in English). He has so many complex and beautiful emotions on the inside, and he bottles it all up to appear serene on the outside, and I have learned from spoilers that later he's going to basically erupt and become a raging dragon that tries to kill everyone he loves ... so I love Run Yu dearly because he shouldn't hide himself that way and I wish I could help him. And also, I want to be sure I'm not being like him.  :D 

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11 hours ago, Tanktimus the Encourager said:

You have always been the Silver Archer. Just because it's harder now doesn't make you any less worthy to wield that bow.

 

DUDE YOU FOUND MY VERY FAVORITE ENDGAME MEME

 

THANK YOU SO MUCH

 

10 hours ago, Miaulin said:

I love the phrasing on this line so much <3

 

you can do this, mon amie!

 

Thank you my sweet Miau!! I'm so very glad you're here!!

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Yes, I did almost hit my head on the chair several times.

 

Also, I love how this went so fast that you can't see me fall over during my second tree pose.  :D  :D  :D  

 

I'll still figure out more concrete goals, but I'M GONNA DO SOMETHING EVERY DAY AND TELL YOU ABOUT IT

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I can't remember if you have done so or not, so in the event you haven't: Go get the NF yoga package. It's totally worth the price, you pay once and have it FOREVER and you get to do Yoga with Kate Marlot, Spezzy and Steve for the rest of your life.

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On 6/1/2019 at 9:17 AM, Tanktimus the Encourager said:

I can't remember if you have done so or not, so in the event you haven't: Go get the NF yoga package. It's totally worth the price, you pay once and have it FOREVER and you get to do Yoga with Kate Marlot, Spezzy and Steve for the rest of your life.

 

I have not done so, but I am putting it on my list!!

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So today was kind of bleh on most levels ... went to bed too late last night, felt like a tired wilty piece of lettuce when I woke up, didn't get a darn thing done at work, took a "walk" that was really short because it was dark and my roommate* was with me in dress clothes, and foolishly put on a second episode of my Chinese TV show so I'm dragging off to bed super late again.  :(  

 

On the other hand, I had a great dinner (leftover pho noodles with spicy peanut sauce, shrimp, green peppers and onions, which I made yesterday; and a delicious smoothie with peaches, strawberries, a banana, yogurt, and almond milk). I also called my very wise and opinionated grandma and had a vigorous hour-long conversation with her that left me inspired and motivated.  :)  She agreed with me on some of the heavy ideas I've been carrying around in my brain for the past month or so, and since she is one of the most educated and wise people I know, that was awesomely encouraging.

 

I weighed myself yesterday and was shocked that I've lost several pounds and am at a much lower weight than I thought - still in the healthy range, but I'm going to monitor it more closely and try to make sure I'm eating enough. (Definitely did not expect to hear myself say that. I'm positive I've lost muscle, too, which is discouraging.) My walk was my "at least a little bit" - it was not what I wanted, and I didn't get to my yoga for the evening, and I am disappointed about that. But I decided to go with my roommate to the store and the library even though she didn't need me to, and I did that on purpose because I wanted to walk, even if it was slow and only a little.

 

Something every day.  :)  Tomorrow will be better.

 

*Roommate: One of the lovely ladies who roomed with me last year is back for another internship, and since I have a spare room, I offered it to her! I cannot remember what her story name was last year, so I'm giving her a new one and calling her Lily this year.  :) 

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On 6/1/2019 at 3:56 AM, SkyGirl said:

I'll still figure out more concrete goals, but I'M GONNA DO SOMETHING EVERY DAY AND TELL YOU ABOUT IT

You are making me feel very guilty that I've still not gotten round to doing that vlog :) I really love the 'do something every day' thing I think that is important. 

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14 hours ago, jonfirestar said:

You are making me feel very guilty that I've still not gotten round to doing that vlog :) I really love the 'do something every day' thing I think that is important. 

 

You know we will love to hear your voice whenever you're ready, but there's no hurry.  :)  And yeah, I just don't have a whole ton of energy these days, but even a tiny bit of progress is progress. Twelve minutes of yoga is better than no minutes. A walk to the store is better than no walk. And so on.  :D 

 

11 hours ago, Tanktimus the Encourager said:

I think it's good that you have a roommate for now. You got to experience having your own space, but I think it's going to help you having someone else in the house for a while.

 

I think it will be fine. If nothing else, it makes me realize that I really do enjoy living alone, just like you said I would.  :D  But Lily is very quiet and keeps almost entirely to herself, even to the point of keeping food in her bedroom so she doesn't have to come downstairs. So at least for now, the only things that are different are trying to coordinate the single-bathroom logistics, and commuting together in the mornings and evenings. And it's okay if that's how she prefers it.

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Today was better! I finally got the interview and angle I needed to start writing my story; I walked from work to the big grocery store with Lily because we thought it was just a few minutes down the road, but it ended up being about two miles, so that was my exercise for the day; and I was supposed to do something with a friend tonight, but they canceled.  :D  The only thing better than having fun plans with friends is having those fun plans canceled so you can have a quiet evening at home. 

 

Tonight I'm going to bed early (like, I am actually going to bed early) because I'm really tired from several consecutive days of not enough sleep, and my allergies are bad so my eyes hurt. A cookie and a bit of mint chocolate chip ice cream is definitely going to happen before then, though.  :D 

 

-----

 

Update: I had a long, relaxing shower and a moderate amount of cookie and ice cream, and am now yarn shopping and finally watching the Mister Rogers documentary Won't You Be My Neighbor?. I never exactly forget how much Mister Rogers inspires me, but every time I get to read about him or read things he wrote, I am thankful all over again for this extraordinary man and all that he did to invest in me and millions of other children. If I had to choose just one role model for my life, it would be him.  :) 

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Guys, I am CRUSHED that the hyperactive country music I picked for my yoga vid didn't load correctly. Crushed, I tell you. My technology has been acting up today and I don't know why.

 

I honestly don't know if anyone else likes these, but they make me happy, so I keep making them.

 

 

They're weird with no music though. This is Adriene's "Rose Yoga" heart opener.  :) 

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1 hour ago, Elastigirl said:

Maybe if yoga really were that fast I'd like it better.:friendly_wink:

 

It's definitely a slow burn!! This one took 35 minutes in real life.  :) 

 

19 minutes ago, Tanktimus the Encourager said:

I played the Hamster Dance song in my mind to make up for the lack of hyper country music.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6WpMlwVwydo

 

PERFECTION.  :D 

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Today was a good day. I had a great meeting with a couple of other young producers at work today about joining forces to create some new multimedia, which has me very excited; and while I was still bogged down in research on the story that's giving me fits, I did make some headway. I realized this afternoon that I need to be more patient with myself, because this is a long-form story with a lot more information and a more conversational tone, and that's something that I haven't done in a very long time. So of course it's taking me a bit longer and it's a bit harder.  :)  That said, hopefully after today I'm mostly done with the research, so I can actually get to writing. 

 

I did the yoga video as soon as I got home from work today, and it was just what I needed. This month's shark week symptoms have included feeling immensely sad for no logical reason (after I finished the Mister Rogers documentary last night I cried for several hours without being able to figure out exactly why); so the slow pace of this one was reassuring, even though it still provided a great workout. I'm still feeling sad and very tired this evening, so I'm already in bed and about to crash and get some sleep.  :)  

 

Food wasn't great at all today ... I brought a perfectly good lunch, but ended up buying Cheez-Its and a Naked Juice for lunch as comfort food; then tonight I forgot until 7:30PM that I had promised to call a friend at 8PM, so I scarfed down leftover pizza and breadsticks so I could be on time for that.  :(  I had planned to make chicken fried rice for dinner, but there just wasn't time. I'll try again tomorrow.

 

Time to get some sleep, I think - goodnight friends!!

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tumblr_inline_pf5o5aWYnR1qdha7v_540.gif

 

The technological and emotional glitches continued today, although the emotional ones seem to be getting better, unlike the technological ones.  :)  I felt like dizzy, weepy, wilty lettuce again most of the day, so even though I started to feel better toward evening, I still took it easy and didn't do yoga today. I walked a little, but that was all. 

 

Food was good today - I didn't buy any snacks during the day (except for some cranberry juice after work because Lily needed dollar bills for the bus), and in the evening I ordered Chinese (due to a mix-up in which I thought Lily was ordering some but she then changed her mind) and that was delicious. I didn't eat very much of it because I wasn't very hungry, so there's lots left for tomorrow.  :) 

 

I'm really struggling with guilt about not working out much right now. I really have no good excuses not to, and I know that not having energy to work out is part of a feedback cycle - the only thing that gives you energy to work out is regular working out. So not working out because I don't have the energy - I feel like it will take me in the opposite direction, away from where I want to go. So even on days when I do yoga (and days when I have DOMS from yoga, like today!), I feel immensely guilty, like I should be doing more. I should be eating cleaner, I should be getting my heart rate up, I should be lifting and getting my strength back. Even not being overweight right now, it's hard, because I still have an ideal image in my head of what I wish I looked / worked out like, and I'm so far away from any chance of ever looking like that. Genetically, it is highly unlikely I could look like that even if I worked at it (there has never once been a woman in my family who was able to build upper body muscles, even the ones who ran and worked their own farms). But it's hard to ignore the voice that wants me to think I don't look like that because I'm not dedicated enough to work out as much as she does. 

 

But my goal for this month is to work with what I have, not what I don't have. I have enough energy to do yoga and walking and other slow, gentle forms of movement. I have enough energy to look for some more variety in my food and focus on trying to nourish it well. In fact, I also have a lot of thoughts about nourishment generally at the moment, because we're doing some sermons on spiritual nourishment at church; so it's an idea weaving through several dimensions of my life right now. That's a good thing. So if I can keep focusing on what I am doing and can do, rather than on all the things I'm not doing well, hopefully I can find some things to be happy about and see a little progress by the end of the month. 

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Quick post before work because I had a Thought when I woke up this morning:

 

If I really wanted to look like the ripped lady on Instagram, I would have to work out as much as she does. But she works out for hours, every single day. She supplements with protein powders and things. She also obviously spends a lot of time and money on skin care and makeup, too. And that's not how I want to live my life.

 

That is not in the least a judgment of how she's living hers. Not a bit. She is inspiring lots of people and she does upload a completely free workout for anyone to use, almost every single day. I've used her workouts when I didn't know what to do at the gym, and they're amazingly helpful. She's doing good work.

 

But, I don't want to spent hours at the gym every day. I have other things I want to do.

 

Does that fix all of the not-working-out-enough guilt? No, it definitely doesn't, because I could still be doing WAY better than I'm doing right now. But it does help put things in perspective.  :)

 

Have a wonderful Friday, my friends!

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8 hours ago, SkyGirl said:

But it does help put things in perspective. 

 

I've been there; you are not alone.  When I got into barbell training last year, I started to feel guilty because I couldn't keep up with the workout schedule that was recommended by people that I respect and admire.  Then one day I realized that they're writing optimized programming for people who want to make the maximum possible gains.  I remembered that professional weightlifting is not actually my goal.  I just want to stay active and healthy into old age.  Once I asked around a bit I found out that I can achieve my goal with a whole lot less weightlifting than a pro would do.  That realization made a huge difference.  Sure, I'd like to do more than I'm doing now, and when I get done with my degree this fall I'll ramp things up a little.  But I plan on doing the exercise that I enjoy, in quantities that fit into a balanced life, and that will be totally good.

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Great thoughts. It's so easy to look at Instagram photos and been tempted to wish we looked like that/feel guilty when we don't. I've had similar thoughts. But, like Cheetah, my big goal is to stay healthy and active as I age. I don't need to be the best, or do cool tricks, or have 6 pack abs. Right now in my life, I do have more time, so I want to use some of that time to get healthier, but it isn't the only thing (or even most important)

 

Another drawback for me is that I just want to do all the stuff because I think it's fun. Which is great, until that somehow twists into guilt that I am not doing it. 

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Sky Sky Sky i forgot to tell you - the narrative you have going right now, with Iyashi! It reminds me of Bucky's stay in Wakanda after Civil War, and it's a vibe i like a lot! You're very brave and i wish you a peaceful time as you continue to adjust and learn who you are and want to be :love_heart: *sends hugs and many shakes of pompoms*

 

On 5/31/2019 at 7:27 PM, SkyGirl said:

"Ashes of Love" in English

 

*stealthily scribbles into notebook list* i might have to check this one out. From your description , and the ultra-pretty gifs, it sounds really interesting.

 

On 6/4/2019 at 7:50 PM, SkyGirl said:

The only thing better than having fun plans with friends is having those fun plans canceled so you can have a quiet evening at home. 

 

Ehehe i'm pretty sure there's a John Mulaney gif for that..."In terms of instant relief, canceling plans is like heroine!" :lol:

 

On 6/4/2019 at 7:50 PM, SkyGirl said:

 finally watching the Mister Rogers documentary

 

ahhhhh i'm sorry to keep quoting things at you but! That documentary! The fam and i haven't actually seen it yet but we were so excited to hear it was a thing! He truly was a wonderful, inspiring person. I get all misty-eyed just reading the wikipedia article about him :P

 

On 6/6/2019 at 11:15 PM, SkyGirl said:

So if I can keep focusing on what I am doing and can do, rather than on all the things I'm not doing well, hopefully I can find some things to be happy about and see a little progress by the end of the month. 

 

*sends so many hugs, every single one of them* the reflections in your other post about the Instagram Lady are so good, and the stuff in the quoted post are so good. You do what's good for Skygirl, what's going to make Skygirl happy, and that's enough <3 <3

 

Happy Weekend my friend!

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