moderate f**k distribution

Sundance sent this to me via text message late last night.
My initial reaction was a giggle, followed by an Amen.
But as I considered it further, I began to realize it’s an extremely important skill, this moderate fuck distribution.
I mean, really. This is key!
Fuck-giving is a double edged sword. Too much or not enough can kill you.
It is truly all about that sweet spot of fuck-giving.

Giving too many fucks or giving no fucks is not sustainable in the long term.
Giving too many can cause you to lose your damn mind worrying unnecessarily. I mean, who has that kind of time and energy? Giving too many fucks will wear you slap out, nothing should require that much of your attention.
Giving none pretty much means you’ve just shut down. That you’re probably abstaining from interacting with others. And while that may sound good on paper, life doesn’t really work that way.
So the real trick is to decide your own personal fuck-giving threshold.

This is my hand.
In this hand is all the fucks I have to give for the rest of my life.
Because I plan to live another fifty years or so, I need to find my fuck-giving sweet spot. Don’t want to run out of fucks to give. Neither do I want to end my life with ungiven fucks.
Whatever I choose to give a fuck about has to really earn it.
Whatever I choose not to give a fuck about probably won’t miss it.

Moderation is pretty much just avoiding extremes and committing to a comfortable balance.
Moderation is supposed to be a super healthy way to live one’s life.
Therefore I shall attempt this middle ground in which I give the perfect amount of fucks.

Y’all, some days you just have to laugh at the thoughts that hatch!

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a tune for Tuesday vol 10

There aren’t many Christmas songs in which the chorus begins: “Santa, you bitch.”
Dude didn’t get a damn thing from his Christmas list…
I mean WTF, Santa?

Thing 2 introduced this song into my holiday collection.
Here’s The Maine with Santa Stole My Girlfriend.

Please listen responsibly.

Categories: music | Tags: , , , , , , | 1 Comment

feeling the appropriate amount of drama

Apparently my wish is PWCS command. I got the text that schools were closed last night just before 9:00.
We have a snow day!
But it’s dry as a bone outside…the southern part of VA got pounded, even the southern part of the county.
Who cares! I’m home today!
Gotta make the most of it.

**warning**
Buckle up kiddies, we’re going on one hell of a stream of consciousness ride today.
For your own safety, and peace of mind, please keep your hands and feet inside the vehicle at all times.

I wrote this on Friday:

It feels like I waste so much time.
I am truly astonished at how much time I actually waste each day.
I’m not sure what that’s about.
I don’t have it in me to write.
I don’t pick up things to read.
I am not depressed.
I am not having issues with my brain.
I’m just in this weird cycle of pressuring myself to work and not actually getting any thing done.
Will put some time at considering how I might break the cycle.

I wrote these words this morning:

I’m a bit worried. I can feel myself being really anxious and there’s not a logical reason for it.
I’m not doing anything I’m meant to be doing except go to work and do my job. I’m barely feeding myself. I’m not writing or reading. I’m not doing homework.
I’m avoiding things I normally enjoy.
The more I write, the more these things are describing depression.
I don’t feel depressed!
Unless…
These are signs of what’s to come…? These are my warning signs…?

I’m not sure how to shake myself loose!
It’s easy to say, “just do it” (fuck you, Nike) but it doesn’t work that way.

I have to write six lesson plans and I literally cannot even open the rubric to see what needs to be done.
I need to watch classroom videos and can’t stand the sight or sounds of children long enough to record my observations.
I have a stack of books in my TBR shelf and I don’t even want to touch them!
And the thing that kind of frightens me the most…I’m not all SQUEEEEEE!! about wrapping gifts.

On this gift of a snow day I’ve already started the laundry and plan to wrap gifts.
And if there’s time before my massage appointment, I’ll do some homework.
I may attempt to turn part of this into a blog post, but maybe not till Wed…?
Of course, I started one Sunday last week when we came home from the play…I lost my momentum and thought process because I didn’t make the time to go back to it until yesterday.

I think those words are key: make the time

I’m not making the time to do anything!
I’m literally just wasting the days away.
Of course, I’m tired after school. And this family schedule is…tricky to say the least. But I’m not sure I’m actually forcing myself to do what needs to be done.
Just the words ‘forcing myself’ speak volumes.

I am overwhelmed.
I’m not sure what that’s about really.
Is it conceptual overwhelm-edness? Am I just so caught up in what needs to be done and what I’m not actually doing that it’s stressing me out?
I do feel overwhelmed.
Anxious.
Like I’m just waiting for the other shoe to drop.
But I need to sort it so I don’t go down the rabbit hole! Especially at this time of year!

Perhaps building a quick schedule. Moderate my time?
Also create a looking forward to thingie, some kind of list maybe?
So I’ll do what I’m meant to be doing and then I’ll be excited with what I’m looking forward to…that could inspire me to get it together with a quickness…?

I can hear my mother in my head, ‘put your nose to the grindstone and work’ ‘pull yourself up by your bootstraps’ ‘stop being so dramatic’
Is it that easy?
Can I just buck up and power through?

It’s not just my stuff that makes me anxious.
I’m anxious around the house.
I’m anxious around my husband.
I’m avoiding the kid so as not to be anxious around him. I was saying this to YBW and he mused that perhaps that’s why the kid never leaves his room when he’s home.
That was more responsibility than I’m interested in taking on. I was just talking about how tricky it is to want to help him and also let him do his own thing. How that induces anxiety in me. Is what I’m feeling causing actions in the kid? Well, that’s a conversation that could be had, but I’ll not be taking the responsibility for it.
Feeling all the more anxious…

I don’t feel comfortable.
Almost as though I’m in a show I don’t understand. As though I learned my lines, and blocking, and costume changes, but when I arrived on stage, I don’t recognize the other actors, or dialogue, or anything really. As though I prepped for a completely different show.
That seems rather dramatic as I read it, but it’s exactly how I feel!
That scenario is appropriate for the level of confusion and anxiety I am experiencing.

I hear my mother hissing, “Don’t be so dramatic!”
My initial response is the hang my head.

But the reality is that this is my life, and the only one I’ll get.
I feel the way I feel. I’m not behaving in an overly dramatic way, I’m just feeling my feels in a somewhat dramatic way.
Feeling my feels is only mine. So I’ll feel as dramatic (or not) as is appropriate to me.
I’m going to do my best to figure how to work through this. To do what needs to be done, tempered with not feeling so anxious about it.

However overwhelmed I’m feeling, I have the power.
My life. My power.
I can do whatever, whenever, and however it works best for me.
Now, currently it doesn’t feel like much is working…but I have the power to change that.
I just have to figure a way to make the time to tap into it…

Categories: me, mental health | Tags: , , , , , , | 6 Comments

December: the good kind of chaos

We saw a thought provoking play Sunday last, I’m still trying to understand the impact it had on me. We talked about it all through dinner and all the way home, and still we’re left with questions.
That’s the power of the arts!
Aren’t we blessed to live in a world in which we experience the arts in so many fashions!?!
The play is an old one, but re-staged in the last twenty or so years. It reads timeless and current at the same moment. And the comment on society is as applicable now as it was then, especially in this country where the divide between the haves and have-nots continues to grow.
Every word we speak or write, every action we take or choose not to take has a ripple effect. Goes out from us into the world around us. Creates an impact. Most of us are immune to that awareness.
None of us should be.
An Inspector Calls by JB Priestley at Shakespeare Theatre Company
It will sit with me for a while.

Last week at school started at about 68% and ended Friday at 80% Lord of the Flies mode. The kids, faculty, and staff are all waiting for the ‘Man with the Bag’ so we can have a little break.
Nine more days.
We can do anything for nine days, right?

This Friday night, YBW and I went to the Lincoln Theatre for a conversation with Bob Woodward. Kojo Nnamdi moderated questions from the audience, with many of his own.

(excuse the pic quality, I broke my phone’s camera lens recently…Santa’s going to bring me a new one!)

Mr Woodward discussed his most recent publication, as well as sharing stories of George H W Bush, Gerald Ford, Mark Felt, and his time during Watergate. He spoke with a frankness, elegance, and sharp sense of humor.
Bob Woodward is one of my life-long ‘folk heroes’.
After all Watergate, Katharine Graham wrote him a letter, in which she wrote, “Beware the demon of pomposity.” He shared with us that he took her words to heart. Her words helped guide him through his career. One he’s spent just doing his job, reporting and writing the information he continues to work hard to collect.
One thing he said that struck me was we need to learn the value of silence. To sit in the uncomfortable silence is the only way to learn what others have to say.
It’s interesting, I’ve been practicing that skill over the last couple of years and it really does work! It’s changed the way I communicate with my daughters.

Saturday night, my darling friend Beccca and I went to The Strathmore to the All These Poses Tour.

(It’s signed!! and please hear that in an excited sing-songy sort of voice)

Rufus Wainwright is celebrating the twentieth anniversary of his career with a show dedicated to his first two albums. Poses, his second album, is one of my favorite records.
The Strathmore is a wonderful venue, not a bad seat in the house, and has excellent acoustics!
Rufus was sublime!

YBW just came home from our winery. We chatted up folks in the barrel barn, drank some wine, and enjoyed a lunch of ham biscuits and brunswick stew. A lovely way to spend this cold and dreary Sunday afternoon.

While I’m enjoying the fullness of my calendar, I’m beginning to become concerned that I need some quiet time to do homework and wrap pressies!
And rest more.
This evening my plan is to be firmly planted on the floor, Christmas movies on the TV, wrapping gifts. What will most likely happen is I’ll lie on the sofa curled up under a blankie binge watching Mrs Maisel.
Y’all wanna take bets?

However overwhelmed I’m feeling (just a smitch), nothing can contain my joy at this season of Advent!
It truly is the most wonderful time of the year!

Yall!
It’s snowing outside!
I’m putting my jammies on inside out, and flushing ice cubes straight away! This little Robynbird wants a snow day! I could get loads of wrapping done if I didn’t have to go to school!

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a tune for Tuesday vol 9

It’s December and that means I’m playing holiday music 24/7 up in my nest!
So for the next four weeks, Tuesday’s tunes will be holiday themed.

I love exploring different versions of traditional Christmas songs.
Sometimes they’re rocking, or jazzy. Sometimes they’re orchestral or sung by a choir.
Sometimes they’re bluesy as all get out.
Here’s White Christmas from Eric Clapton.

Please listen responsibly.

Categories: music | Tags: , , , , , | 3 Comments

becoming

I woke up before 6:00 this morning.
My brain pinballing all over the place.

I’m reminded of that Alanis song, These R The Thoughts.

Anyway, here’s what I’m considering this morning.

I have this belief that we all carry baggage, we have no choice.
But the idea is to have a simple carry-on bag, not steamer trunks full. We are all products of our experiences, good, bad, indifferent.
They shape us.
But we have the ability to decide how!
We can choose to learn from these things. We can make small shifts in thinking. We can rewrite our inner speech.
We can learn how to use our experiences to our advantage.

To become!

Not necessarily ‘better’ people, but just become the human we were meant to be before we were inadvertently influenced by others and events, etc.

I long to become.

The easiest way to do that is leave the large luggage behind, pack only what’s absolutely necessary and get on with it.
No matter where I am, I am there.
I gotta be straight with me before I can expect to be straight with the world.

That’s work most people avoid.
And here’s the biggest shame of that, it doesn’t have to be that difficult!
The work can be hard, but once you begin, you’re already further along than you realize. Sure, you’ll slip up. Sure, you’ll feel overwhelmed.
But by simply making the decision to start, you’re already ass deep in the work. In a good way!

It took me so long to learn how to feel safe.
To understand that I could exist in an environment not fraught with fear and anxiety. To realize that’s not how we’re meant to live. I’m no longer waiting for the other shoe to drop.
Well, not the way I used to do.

The me I was before was a wreck. On so many unnecessary meds. Drugs to sleep, narcotics for pain, mood altering meds to simply function.
I realize now that all I needed to do was live differently. To escape that situation.
I did!

Now, my life isn’t perfect. And sure, issues.
But I’m not fearful.
My central nervous system isn’t always so over-stimulated.
I can breathe and sleep and function.
I am learning to feel safe in life. In love. In all things.

Inner speech is such a rat bastard!
But, I’m over here like, I don’t blame my mother for the way I hear her words in my head, the things I say to myself.
I can’t! I won’t!
She didn’t know any better.
Or perhaps she did. Perhaps she was cruel for her own entertainment.
Only, that can’t matter to me.
She was flawed.
But I am me.
And I decide what I say to myself! I decide that I am enough. I decide that I am loved. I decide that I will treat myself with kindness. I decide that I am safe.

I was driving the other day and nothing unsafe happened, but I may not have been paying attention and stopped at a green light or something simple like that. I don’t remember the act, only what happened after.
I remarked, Wow you’re stupid. or similar.
YBW grabbed my hand and was like, it’s OK to make a mistake.
I was hit with the full force of his kindness.
I realized that even though I work to shift my inner speech from “you are not, and will never be good enough” to literally anything else, it will always be in there.
I can’t erase it. I can only build upon it.

It’s OK to make a mistake vs You’re stupid for making a mistake.
A world of difference!

You know what Ms Frizzle said:

How I talk myself is influenced by what I was taught about myself by my mother. Her actions and words assured me I was never quite up to snuff.
I know I’m more than those thoughts.
I know how hard it is to learn to shift that process. I know how hard it is to find different words. But that work is everything!
Can’t learn anything new unless I’m willing to make mistakes.

I’ve been hearing lately about how I’m living my best life.
For the most part, I am.
Sure, there’s stuff to work out. My stuff, YBW’s stuff.
Our stuff. But our stuff is really just my stuff and his stuff kind of bumping into each other.
And I’m working on my stuff…and he’s trying to work on his too.
While there are things that are not ideal, we are aware and we are addressing them.

But I also know this isn’t exactly my best life.
But that’s because I’m still saying things like, “I want to (insert thing).” but not actually doing it. I’m procrastinating finishing my degree. I’m not reading. I’m hardly writing.
But, those are choices I’m making.

I can choose to live my best life to the fullest.
When people say they see me living my best life, they see what’s out there, they don’t see what I’m like inside.
However confident and put together I appear, I’m also a girl who doubts her every move. A girl who fears she’ll never feel ‘good enough’.
But I’m working on that. I’m working towards living my best life inside and out.

I am not a self fulfilling prophecy.
I will amount to more than I was lead to believe! I can, and will do what I set myself to. I can and will be content in my own skin, and in my life!
I am working each day to get to that place inside me.
So maybe I am living my best life after all.

And that’s the key.
Actively living!

It’s cool to want sunshine and lollipops, but you gotta make that happen.
So by doing this work, by actively living mylife, I’m actually in my best life!

Ta Da!
Who knew?

Categories: me | Tags: , , , , , , | 2 Comments

giving of thanks for November

November. The month that contains the giving of thanks. And y’all, I am not a Thanksgiving kind of girl.
That said, I am chock full of gratitude this month.


Charleston visit.
Time with Sally and her fam.
Time with Jessica.
Solitary road trip.

My therapist.
Two of the three alternative healthcare providers.
Our therapist.
Amber. (she does my hair)


First snow day of the year! (Nov 15)
YBW’s sense of humor.
An unexpected day spent with Catherine.
Independent bookshops.
Michaels coupons.
Mail from Sundance.
My mother in law’s ring back on my finger.
40% off sale at J Crew. (Roby’s getting a new coat for Christmas.)
Flannel jammie pants.
My monogrammed rain boots.
Target’s customer service.
Old Town Warrenton.
Shop small Saturday.
Accidental wine tastings.
Eric Clapton’s Christmas album.
redbubble.com
Holding hands with YBW.

Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade.

Apple cider mimosas.
Spending Thanksgiving with friends and family and actually enjoying myself.
YBW’s mad kitchen cleaning skills.
A powerful phone conversation with Thing 2.

A new menorah for Hanukkah. (first night is Dec 2)
Christmas decorating.
Making bows.
Fairy lights on the banister.
So! Many! Baby! Jesuses!

And quite possibly what I’m most grateful for!

Thing 1 is pregnant!
The best part is that she is in excellent health, and the baby is strong and healthy!

My cup runneth over.

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a tune for Tuesday vol 8

This song is quite possibly my favorite closing number. And y’all that’s no simple choice!
Here’s You Can’t Stop the Beat from Hairspray (2007)

Please listen responsibly.

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

3.2.1. Quote Me – Inner Beauty

Kat at Family Furore nominated me for this particular challenge. She writes a beautiful blog about her life and family. Visit her site, you’ll be pleased you did!

3.2.1 Quote Me challenge was created by Rory over at A Guy Called Bloke.

Rules: 3.2.1 Quote Me!
Thank the Selector
Post 2 quotes for the dedicated Topic of the Day.
Select 3 bloggers to take part in ‘3.2.1 Quote Me!’

Simple quotes have the most powerful impact. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve seen a quote posted somewhere or another and felt it ring true in my soul.
One little quote can become the lightning rod of empowerment, or create a shift in the way one considers life. One little quote can make you laugh, make you cry.
One little quote can live on long past the one who originally said it.

This ‘quote me’ challenge is a fun way to show how powerful words can be when they strike the right chord!

Great big thanks to Kat for nominating me!
Ironically, it was right after I posted about coloring my hair. So while I shared about changing my outward beauty, I’m excited to share some quotes about inner beauty that rang true in me.


Audrey knew what was up!


I believe this is what kindness can do for all of us!

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a tune for Tuesday vol 7

I was eleven when I bought my first 45. It was Toto’s Africa.
I was forty seven when Weezer remade Africa.
I liked it!

Weezer covered Toto’s Africa.
Asked Weird Al to star in the vid, which is pretty much just a parody of their vid for Undone (The Sweater Song)
Leaves me wondering how far on can cram one’s tongue in one’s cheek.

Please listen responsibly.

Categories: music | Tags: , , , , , , | 2 Comments

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