warning label

I think mine might say:

Kind of heart and full of love but her mouth is caustic.

Perhaps it might say:

She runs her life with a velvet hammer.

Maybe even:

She’ll ask you Why? more times than you can count, but only because she wants to better understand you and your motivation.

It could possibly say:

Maybe she’s not the best at being loved, but she’s pretty good at loving. (paraphrased from Chelsea Carroll)

Or even this:

Plays well with others, but only for a little while.

In all honesty, I suspect my warning label should be the following:

She’s a cat in the form of a girl. She will equally expect and reject your affection. She will require your immediate and undivided attention, but only when it’s least convenient for you. She will provide comfort and adoration, but bite without warning.

You may be asking, Why you gotta label everything? Believe me when I tell you I have absolutely no idea, but I know I function better that way.
This kind of label sounded fun to me.
What do y’all think?
What are some of your warning labels?

Categories: me | Tags: , , | 8 Comments

a tune for Tuesday vol 60

I absolutely adore this song!
It sounds like something I listened to as a much younger person, but also has a very now sort of feel about it.

Here’s White Reaper with Might Be Right. Check it out and let me know what you think.

Please listen responsibly.

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what I really really want

I saw this sign at Home Goods and I had the feeling it was in my face for a reason.
Are The Powers That Be trying to tell me something or am I just overthinking again?

It took me a long time to accept that I was unable to label my feelings regarding that rejection letter from Mason.
And tbph, that only happened in my therapist’s office. When I tried to describe how I felt about it, I was at a loss. I was able to define some feelings, but nothing really felt quite right.
She asked me if I needed to label it to move forward.
I honestly had to pause and consider that for a moment. My reactive response was ‘yes’. My mindful response was ‘no’.
Y’all, that ‘no’ was freeing!

It occurred to me I only chose Mason because it was convenient. It’s got a good program and it’s about 30-45 minutes from home.
I have no real affection for the University. I mean it’s my husband’s alma mater, but I didn’t know him then.
I applied there because it was convenient not because I was passionate about it.

That realization shed light on my seeming inability to label my feelings.
Perhaps I felt ambivalent about the rejection because I felt ambivalent about the school.
I wasn’t sad about not getting what I wanted from a place I didn’t care about getting it from.
(Please ignore the grammatical chaos of that sentence and try to glean the deeper meaning.)

I didn’t care about going into the program at Mason.
I cared about going into the program.
I did some research.
I found some online universities that offer the program.
I requested information.
I’ll be following up with calls in the coming days.

I’m still thinking about this clinical mental health program.
I’m still thinking about being a therapist/counselor.
I did not stop working on it.
I took the time I needed to discover how I felt about what I really wanted, and why.
Just because I took that time didn’t mean I wasn’t working.

I used that time to suss out what I really wanted.
What I really want is a clinical mental health degree.
Doesn’t matter where I earn it.

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find joy every day

This is absolutely everything!

Happiness is not one great big undefinable thing. Real joy and real contentment actually happen in the concrete every day.
It’s the little things.
Those little every day things where joy resides in it’s simplest form.

These are my every day joys from the last week or so.

When fifth graders didn’t understand what I meant when I said, “Thanks for coming to my TED Talk.” at the end of the lesson.
Tuesday when Beau beat me at chinese checkers for the very first time!
Drinking wine with YBW by the fire at Naked Mountain on Valentine’s Day.

Finding the right calphalon skillet to replace the damaged one. And it was only $40!
Talking with Sally.
Being behind the lens of my camera.
This photo of Baby K laughing so I can see all her teeth!

Leaving the house at 7:30 am to get gatorade and soda crackers for YBW.
Taking Jessica’s birthday gift to the post office.

These are random every day things, but I found joy in each one of them.
(to be clear, I was not joyful my husband had food poisoning, I was joyful I could do anything to help him)

Y’all, that’s where the joy is! All you have to do is look for it.
Where are your every day joys?

Categories: me | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 11 Comments

invincibility and rain boots: an existential conundrum

I’m having a bit of existential conundrum.
You might think it has something to do with not being accepted into the masters program at Mason, but you’d be mistaken.
I am in full on ‘What does anything actually mean?’ mode because of this moment.

On a sunny and warm yet breezy Monday, YBW and I went out for a shoot day.
We shot loads of photos.
We walked for miles.
It’s been raining a great deal over the last two weeks so I wore my monogrammed rain boots because I knew trails would be muddy.
When we came to Young’s Branch, (a small creek that feeds into Bull Run) I made the choice to go through the creek while YBW went across the bridge.

(He later told me that he shot me in sport mode so he could capture everything in case I slipped and fell.)
As you can see, I did not fall.

That said, I did not come out of the creek unscathed.

My right rain boot leaked.
My foot was ankle deep in cold muddy water INSIDE MY BOOT!
I was completely and totally flabbergasted!
In what realm do rain boots fill with water!?

I’m over here like, You had one fucking job!

You see, I am of the mind that I am invincible when wearing my rain boots.
Quite sincerely, I have this theory that my rain boots make me invincible.
Meanwhile the rain boots are all, Haha nope!

This feeling of confusion has been with me since the incident.
This feeling of questioning everything.
Existentialism, you bitch.

I know I’m a fully-functioning adult person. Logically and rationally I understand I am far from invincible. But when I wear my rain boots I feel like a superhero. I feel safe and protected and capable of absolutely anything.
They are amazingly comfy. They have my monogram, therefore specifically mine.
With these boots on my feet, I am a total BAMF ready to tackle any messy or wet thing that comes at me.
I am invincible!
It really is as simple as that.

YBW and I were talking about it yesterday and he reassured me he didn’t think it was as childish as I’m imagining.
He provided the analogy of spending an afternoon washing and waxing your car and feeling like it drives faster or better when you’re finished.
I mean, I’ve never experienced that feeling, but I understand it in concept.

I talked with my precious sister in law, Sally this morning.
She used the word innocence in response to this conversation.
That rang true in me.
She spoke of being jaded. Of losing one’s ability to move about freely.

As we become adults, we are jaded. We do spend a great deal of time looking about for things designed to trip us up, or keep us from growing or doing or becoming. We’re defensive, and somewhat fearful about how we move about in the world. But that’s a terrible way to be! I mean, paying attention to one’s safety is paramount, but functioning from a place of defense and disillusion isn’t a healthy (or enjoyable) way to go through life. But I understood her point.

She used the word freedom.
When she talked of freedom and innocence the word that came to me was autonomy.
I’m sure I took away something from our conversation that she did not intend. Because she used the word freedom as a synonym for autonomy. But that’s not exactly how I meant it.

I looked like this to me.
A child becomes autonomous when they’re ‘big enough’ to do things with more independence.
How is this autonomy applicable to rain boots?
How often does a child pull on rain boots with the express purpose of jumping in puddles?
They are using their independence to make smart choices. Their autonomy provides opportunities for exploration of the world around them. Their innocence encourages their joy and wonder.

I cling to that bit of childlike innocence in my rain boot invincibility theory. However disillusioned I am. However defensive I am. However fearful of my freedom I may be, I will always strive to foster my own sense of joy and wonder at the world. I will use my autonomy to provide myself opportunities to explore and engage the world around me.
I will have moments of disillusion. Of feeling defensive. Of being so jaded I neglect to see the wonder around me.
But I choose to actively seek out the joy and wonder in this world. To hold on to the remains of my childlike innocence. To use my autonomy to the best of my ability.

My rain boots did not make me invincible the other day.
You know what? That’s not entirely true.
My rain boots were not invincible the other day.

I’m solving that problem in two ways.
The first is to seal the seam on the boot I have.
The second is I ordered a new pair while they were 50% off!
Do I need two pairs of monogrammed rain boots?
Um…yeah!
Two different fashion opportunities for invincibility FTW!

I am a woman who’s lived through forty-eight years of life. Some of it good. Some of it bad. Some of it just plain indifferent. I’ve spend enough time feeling defensive and fearful. I’ve spent enough time worrying about my freedom and autonomy. I’ve lived through and come out the other side of every single thing this world has thrown at me.
I have not lost my sense of wonder.
I cling tightly to my joy. To my gratitude. To my childlike innocence.
And dammit! I am invincible when I wear my rain boots!

Categories: me | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 5 Comments

a tune for Tuesday vol 59

I remember Thing 1 really liking Paramore. I remember not really liking them at all.
But Hayley Williams has a new solo song out that I quite like.

Check out Simmer and tell me what you think.

Please listen responsibly

Categories: music | Tags: , , , , | 5 Comments

a tune for Tuesday vol 58

The first time I heard this song, it felt familiar and comforting.
I love Bethany Cosentino’s voice.
I feel all uplifted and positive when I hear this song.
Check out Best Coast’s For the First Time and let me know what you think.

Please listen responsibly.

Categories: music | Tags: , , , , | 4 Comments

a tune for Tuesday vol 57

I absolutely adore Pearl Jam!
Great new track and I’m eagerly awaiting the album to drop.
This reminds me a bit of Talking Heads. And I love them too, so the combination is especially wonderful!

Check out Dance of the Clairvoyants and let me know what you think.

Please listen responsibly.

Categories: music | Tags: , , , , | 7 Comments

a tune for Tuesday vol 56

Thing 2 sent me a text with a youtube link for a song called Wobbly by Ezra Furman.
I loved it!
She suggested I might also like his song Restless Year.
Which I absolutely did!
Not only the song itself, but also the video!

I wrote her later in the day: P.S. LOVE Ezra Furman.
She replied,

I’m glad you like him! I found it last night after I was on my angry punk kick, really changed my mood. I was thinking you would adore him or be like, “um…K?”

I assured her I adore him.
She bought his album on bandcamp and sent it to me that same day. I’ve been listening to it ever since!

I hope y’all dig it too!

Please listen responsibly.

Categories: music | Tags: , , , , , | Leave a comment

we regret to inform you

I got an email Friday morning.
It looked like this.

To be perfectly honest, I’m just beginning to process how I feel about it.
Here’s a quick look into that:
Wait. What?
Disappointment.
Incredulity.
Fuck you, Mason.
I’m not even surprised.
We regret to inform you? Aaand fuck you some more.
A competitive program. And I’m just not competitive enough?
But WHY am I not good enough?
Am I even mad?
I have absolutely no idea what I feel.
Shiiiiit! That was my plan. Now what am I going to do?

I sent the screen cap above to YBW and both the girls Friday morning before I went to school.
YBW was initially sad for me, “Oh no! I’m so sorry, baby!” then he was mad for me, “well…fuck them.”
It was the YBWest response, and it honestly gave me great comfort. Sometimes when you can’t get mad, it’s nice to have someone get mad for you.
Thing 1 replied, “Oh no!” then texted me a bit later on, “Oh no! I just got your email (sad face emoji)”
Thing 2 replied, “How are you feeling about that email?” then after a bit I got a text that said, “How are you feeling about that email? Or are you not ready to discuss it yet?”
These three people are my strongest support network. They each responded in a way that is unique to who they are.
My love, gratitude, and appreciation are bigger than I even have words.

I have been encouraged to feel my feels before I attempt to make any plans.
I have been encouraged to consider what my feels actually mean before I begin to decide how to move forward.
I have been encouraged with love and mindful conversation.
I have been encouraged with cocktails and hugs.
I have even been encouraged by Baby K’s sweet giggles. (Like, she doesn’t know what’s up she’s just happy to talk to her Birdie. Perhaps I should take a play out of her book?)

I asked my beloved friend and mentor Jessica to write one of my two recommendation letters.
I broke down and emailed her the screen cap this morning. She replied, “I’m speechless. My heart hurts for your heart. Hugging you! Loving you!”

My therapist wrote the second letter.
She doesn’t know yet. I’ll have that conversation with her when I’m there the first week of February.

Y’all, I am disappointed.
And a little sad.
And defensive AF.
I feel overwhelmed by making a new plan. (That’s exactly why I’m being encouraged to wait.)
This Destination girl is pretty much ‘fuck all y’all’ to the Journey right now.
However, I am aware that the Journey is meant to be what’s important. (but fuck that too)

YBW suggested I take an allotted amount of time to swim around in my feels. Then amended the suggestion in case it wasn’t enough time. I’m not sure I’m actively feeling my feels. I mean, I don’t actually feel anything.
Me calling out: I’m going to need a minute over here!

Am I feeling?
Am I suppressing?
Am I feeling all the things at the same time and therefore can’t sort them out?
Seriously, fuck this.
Well, it’s pretty clear I’m feeling that, huh?

Categories: me | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 10 Comments

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