Author Archives: robynbird

About robynbird

I've been a writer since I could hold a pencil in my hand. I'm learning new and wonderful things about myself through my writing and realized it isn't enough just to write it down, I need to share it. What I have to say may not be Earth shattering, but it is filled with love and I hope it moves those who read it.

mind full or mindful


I’m actively focusing on this as I create my summer schedule.
I must pay attention to where I am while I’m creating my schedule.
Being mindful of building in time for self care.

I have three things that must be accomplished before school starts.
1. 5 courses
2. GOOB Lula
3. house

I can most likely complete three of my five courses between now and when school starts, leaving me with one month to finish two. I’m going to do this if it kills me, and y’all it just might.

Getting rid of all the Lula merch before school starts is a must for me. I need to close the book on this going out of business.

The process of fixing the hole in the house has finally begun. We met with the roofer Saturday. Of course they can’t begin work for about a month, but I was assured it would be finished before I have to go back to school in August.

My mind is full.
There are lists. And tasks. And plans.
I must be mindful about my time, and needs, and state of being so I don’t overwhelm myself.

On Monday I tempered homework with writing for this blog, and running to the post office and Costco.
Tuesday I posted Lula merch in an online sale, and did homework, and wrote.
Today I’m writing and I’ll do homework. I have two appointments today, one with my therapist, the other to see the massage therapist. I need both these appointments. My therapist and I will talk of how best to plan. The massage therapist will ease the discomfort in my head for a while.

When my mind is full, I feel frantic. I’m not actually checking anything off my list because I’m just spinning my wheels. I’m aware of how much I have to do, but not actually doing any of it. I’m like the Tasmanian Devil spinning around creating more chaos in my wake. I’m like a pinball bouncing around off things, all flashing lights and dinging bells.
I know this about myself. I know that I’ve not made the best use of my time or skills. Neither have I taken the best care of myself.
When I’m mindful, I’m still. I’m aware. I’m comfortable and confident.
Shifting gears from the former to the later is not exactly simple, but neither is it all that difficult. I only have to remember that I must stop to shift. Can’t shift on the fly, don’t want to ruin my transmission.
So I stop and I breathe.
Then I plan.

Create my summer schedule.
On paper with a pen.
Times and tasks and appointments.
But I’m also adding porch life and cocktails and maybe even a trip!

I’m paying attention to what I need to accomplish and what I need to be me. Being mindful about tempering crossing accomplishments off lists with simply living my life.
My mind feels full. I feel a little bit of anxiety about accomplishing tasks.
By being mindful about myself and my place in the world, I feel confident I can do what needs to be done without becoming overwhelmed. I know how to make it work. Just have to set about the planning.
Being mindful, living my intention, kicking ass and taking names, I got this!

Advertisements
Categories: me | Tags: , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

mother – daughter dynamics

The girls were here for about ten days.
Mostly it was lovely.
There were moments that weren’t so much.

I see the dynamic between my daughters, their fierce and devoted friendship. I am awed by it. The love they share is truly something to behold.
I feel confident and comfortable in the dynamic between myself and my daughters individually. There is strength in these relationships, a love that is new and ‘grown up’ as well as that powerful mother-child dynamic. While I cannot speak for them, I feel strongly that we are healthily navigating this new way of being in a relationship. The relationship between mother and adult daughter.
When it comes to the dynamic of the three of us in a relationship, well, that’s where it becomes tricky for me. Landmine riddled, and though carefully trod, I seem to be blowing shit up left and right simply by being in the relationship.

Is it simply triangling?

Or is it defaulting to our old roles in the relationship?

Thing 1 has always been a Daddy’s girl. They were each other’s favorites from the get go.
Thing 2 has always been a Momma’s girl. We were each other’s favorites.

When the three of us are together, I worry that Thing 1 doesn’t see my love for her. That I don’t consider relating to either or both of them as a competition. I don’t know how to help change her perception.
I worry that Thing 2 feels as though she must walk the tightrope between her sister and me. That she cannot just stand on her two feet and actively love and accept love from us both.

Of course, these are the stories I make up. I don’t know what goes on inside them.
I want to create an environment in which love is an even field. Where we can be together and feel safe.
What I want and what actually happens seems to me, vastly different.

I was stressed with both girls here. I watched them speak their own private language with awe and amusement, but after a while, I began to feel sad and hurt. The time we have together is precious, and they were using it to be together without me.
I began to feel as though I’m simply here to swipe my card.

There were moments that felt connected. That felt like we were in that even playing field of love and safety. But they were few and far between. Even the precious and sacred trip to the tattoo shop was tricky.
I know they had moments of dissatisfaction while they were here. But I don’t know what they were thinking or feeling.

I feel confused.
I feel disappointed.
I feel sad.

Last summer when Thing 1 was here, it felt so different. It felt like we were really successful in relating to each other, in loving each other.
The difference between last summer and last week is that Thing 1 was here alone last summer and Thing 1 and Thing 2 were here together last week.

I understand that I relate to them in different ways.
With Thing 2 I have an easy, yet deep intimacy. We can talk of deeply personal feelings and the whys and wherefores behind them.
My relationship with Thing 1 is loving, but with a practical twist. We don’t have the ease of intimacy between us, but we can be real with each other.

The quick and easy way to fix to this landmine situation is to only spend time with them one on one. But that’s not really a solution for the long term.
I’m not sure how to go about removing the landmines from our even playing field of safe love, but I want to try. I’d like to be able to be with both the girls and for all three of us to feel safe and loved and comfortable.
Mothers and daughters will always be tricky curious beasts.
I would like, and I hope they would like, to remain as tricky and curious as ever, but to do it in a healthy, safe, and loving way.
I feel hopeful.

Categories: on being a mom | Tags: , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

chaos and the need for ‘normal’ life

When I look back at the last six weeks I’m honestly amazed that we came out the other side as well off as we did.

Two deaths in two weeks.
Three birthdays in the same two weeks.
A mother’s day when there are no mothers.
Projects, exams, last month of senior year with senioritis in full swing.
Graduation.
Party.
Girls here.
(P.S. there’s still a hole in our house)

Now when read in a list, it may seem as though I’m exaggerating the impact each and every one of these things had on us. I’m here to assure you I am not. And while some of these things are in the biggest ‘Yay’ column, it was a stressful time.

Last week when YBW and I had our therapy appointment, we each talked about what we needed as we moved forward.
I wanted to take a break. Go away for a few days. Breathe new air. Get out of this house. Be near water. I was looking at it as kind of a reset, have a break to rest before we returned to normal life.
YBW wanted to get back to normal straight away. He expressed his weariness at the starting and stopping and starting he’s been doing for the last six weeks. He also expressed his desire to sleep.
Our therapist was on point, and while we didn’t settle on one or the other, we each began to consider the other’s point of view differently than we had before.

Later in the day I scribbled a note to myself.

The more I considered it, the more I began to feel that just saying what I need might be enough.
Which actually may turn out better as YBW is on call the last week of June which means we can’t go anywhere anyway.
We haven’t talked about it again. I did tell him my thoughts on expressing the need vs having the need met. I asked him how he was feeling about getting back to normal life. He remarked it didn’t feel like normal life.
Does he need to discover what his new normal is? I don’t know the answer to that. I do know he still isn’t sleeping all through the night.

What I do know is that from a very early age I learned not to express my needs because they wouldn’t be met. So to avoid that disappointment, I get vague af when it comes to expressing my needs. I actually think the phrase, ‘it doesn’t matter what I want or how I say it, I’m not going to get it anyway’. (Sounds pretty pathetic, right?)
I guess it’s the way I learned to defend myself.
Anyway, that’s where I am.
Desire to rest and recharge after the last six weeks before returning to ‘normal life’.
Only, here I am today, knee deep in normal life.
Blogging, GOOB with Lula, prob and stats, and instructional planning homework, hole in the house repair, teaching Thing G to drive, and just regular household maintenance stuff.

I don’t feel short-changed or whatever. I feel like being specific regarding my needs is a big deal and even if I don’t actually get what I said I need, I suspect I got some little bit of what I needed just by saying it out loud.
Go me!
I’m growing as a person and all that.
I mean, sure being near water would be perfection. But so far, on this first day of ‘normal life’ since the second day of May, I’m feeling fairly content.

Categories: death, loss, love, peace and wellbeing | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

new ink

Thing 1, Thing 2, and I got our mother – daughter tattoos Tuesday!

You may recall a conversation involving two birds and a squirrel and think, ‘well damn if that doesn’t look like elephants.’
Yeah.
Turns out we weren’t meant to have birds and a squirrel as our matching tattoos.
Turns out we were meant to have a momma elephant with her one slightly bigger than the other babies.

Thing 2’s on her left calf

Thing 1 remarked one day that she thought she might like an elephant tattoo. I replied that I’d been thinking for a while that our mother – daughter tattoos should be elephants and the idea took off like wildfire!
Both my girls love elephants. They do because their Grandmommy loved elephants. I love elephants because I saw the love my mother had for them become precious to my daughters and spark their love.

We traded found images back and forth in our group chat. We discussed if they should match, or if it would be OK if they were different even if each work of art had a momma and two baby elephants. I’m not actually sure which one of us found the photo that was the jumping off point for what we finally decided on, but in that moment, we knew all three would be exactly like the others.
In one particularly precious conference call we finally decided how to move forward.
I met a guy called ‘Grumpy’ at Storyteller Tattoo and he quickly turned our concept into actual art.

Momma’s on her left upper arm

We rolled up into the tattoo studio Tuesday ready to go!
Grumpy shared the finished artwork and my first words were, “I’m going to need mine much smaller.”
It made sense because of where we wanted them on our bodies.
Thing 1 has hers the original size because she has long legs.
Thing 2 has hers once reduced so it would fit right on her calf.
I have mine twice reduced because while my arms are biggish, they’re not all that big.

Thing 1’s on her outer right thigh

Here’s the difference in tattoos twenty years ago and now.
When I got my first tattoo the shop was filled with smoke as the artist chain-smoked through the entire process. The tattoo gun was loud. I never really had much pain, a bit of discomfort, but the sound of the gun made me anxious and I didn’t really enjoy the experience.
Storyteller was clean and bright and filled with interesting artists with twisted senses of humor who weren’t afraid to drop the F-bomb. (These are our people, y’all!) We talked and joked, and shared experiences, and even music. Grumpy’s tattoo gun was quiet. No, not just quiet. It was silent!
Y’all! That made the biggest difference for me!

Momma holding Thing 1’s hand

Elephants form tight knit family groups that are lead by the eldest female. The role of the matriarch is to keep the herd out of harm’s way.
Momma elephants keep their herd safe.
However grown my girls are, the desire to keep them safe, the desire to gather the herd, to be together when we can, is always in my heart.
Even though we are far apart, we are tightly knit in our hearts.

We three girls are overjoyed with our new ink!
Yes, because we have this art on our bodies. But also because we went through it together.
We embraced the beautiful mess that is being these particular mother and daughters. Our most powerful and sacred love. We took all that and created a wonderful experience with which to celebrate us!
Two sisters and their Momma documented their love and joy at being each other’s with indelible art on their bodies. These elephants further connect us, serve as a visual reminder of our unbreakable bond.
That they’re beautiful makes it even more lovely!

Categories: on being a mom | Tags: , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

class of 2018

Congratulations to the class of 2018!

Thing G graduated last night!
Go Tigers!

We are proud.
We are joyful.
We are exhausted.

Categories: on being a mom | Tags: , , , , , , | Leave a comment

last week of school got me like

Last week of school got me like

Here are my yays and boos for the last week of school.

First the boos.
1. It’s still freaking raining. (Up yours, mother nature.)
2. State Farm SUCKS! (Yes, there is still a hole in our f**king house.)
3. Low barometric pressure headache won’t cut me any slack. (Though you cannot see it, here’s the back of my middle finger.)
4. Elementary school is in full on ‘Lord of the Flies mode’. (Wanted you to know just in case you never hear from me again.)

Now the yays.
1. Headache is not debilitating! (‘Alternative’ medicine FTW!)
2. Thing G passed the Yoda-speak final! (Hot damn!)
3. Girls arrive tomorrow! (OMGEEEE!! Cannot wait to squeeze them!!!!)
4. YBW found and ordered me a brand new ipod classic! (Yaaaaaaaaaaay!!!!)
5. Graduation Thursday! (So! Many! Feels!)
6. Early dismissal Friday! (last day of school)

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

first world prob

Yesterday was the first day it didn’t rain in damn near two weeks.
So it was the perfect opportunity to get outside to prep for porch life. Of course, I had to take stuff out with me. My phone, ipod, thingie to play the ipod (I made a choice not to use my earbuds), water bottle, and a knife to cut open the bag of potting soil.
Turns out my hands were a bit too full and what I ended up dropping was my ipod.
When I pick it up, on the screen is the red x of death.

Saddest face Robynbird.
(Should have just used the damn earbuds.)

My immediate solution was to youtube music on my (android) phone while I potted herbs, swept, laid the rugs, and set up the furniture.

Once I was inside I was met with the full force of the loss.
How will I play music in the car?
Apple doesn’t even make the classic ipod anymore, only the ipod touch. That’s pretty much an iphone that doesn’t make calls. I don’t need all that jazz. I don’t want a bigger screen, better camera, face time, messaging, apps for this, apps for that. I want at thing to hold and play all my music.

In the past, YBW has teased that I’m a luddite. I’m not opposed to new technology. I just don’t want a bunch of technology that I don’t need. It seems ridiculous to need one thing but have something that does all this other stuff.
So the question becomes, can I find an ipod classic somewhere in the world for less than what a brand new ipod touch costs?

I know this may seem rather a small problem, and in reality it truly is.
I’m behaving in true first world fashion, being a whiny crybaby about my absolutely first world problem.

The thing is, I love music. I’m never without music. I almost always have music playing.
I want to be able to access all my music at any given time.
So however small in the grand scheme of things, not being able to play my music is a big deal to me.

I’m fortunate the folks around me know and respect my point of view. It helps that I’m not being a dick about it, just sad.
I’m playing music through my computer at home, and going to burn a few cds to play in the car, but I’ll grow weary of that pretty quickly, I like to mix it up with the music.
My dad used to say, “If wishes were horses, beggars could ride.” And Grandaddy used to say, “You’re old enough for your wants not to hurt you.”
They’re both right.
But I’m just like Russell.

Hey, at least I won’t have a bunch of 8-tracks riding around in the car.

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

studying Yoda-speak (sometimes known as Latin)

You never realize how stupid you actually are until you try to help one of your kids study a foreign language.

I took Latin in high school. (30 years ago)
I remember nothing.
Decline a noun. Conjugate a verb.
Nominative, genitive, ablative.
What the actual f**k!?!
This shit is difficult!

I remember us/a/um.
I remember root words.
I took that language because I wouldn’t have to speak it. I also took it because American English is based on Latin. I know what words mean because I understand the roots.
I also had a mad crush on a boy that took Latin.
In all honesty, what I came out of high school Latin with was a better understanding of my native American English. And the ability to read more.

Seriously though, Thing G had two years of high school Spanish and didn’t feel like he wanted to tackle year three so he switched to Latin. So two years of two languages or three years of one language to graduate.
Well, Latin kicked his ass up one side and back down the other and he’s struggling.
YBW asked if I’d help him study since I took the language.

My initial thought was, F******************K!
I would do anything to help this kid, but I don’t really remember anything from taking those classes all those years ago.
But helping him I am. We’re studying together for his final.
Nothing is coming back to me, but I’m keeping that to myself.

The teacher provided no study guide. (um, yay…?)
The practice tests and the actual tests are exactly the same, so here’s hoping the final will be similar in construct. This means, I’m pretty much having him retake all his tests again as practice for the final.
God help us both, I hope it works!

YBW apologized that I helped him study.
Whoa whoa whoa! He’s my kid too. I love him. I am willing to do what I can to help him be a successful human. No more apologies.
We’re all in this together, bud.
(Cue HSM circa 2006)

Sorry. I couldn’t help myself.

Thing G is a good kid.
He’s a smart kid.
He’s a math and science kind of kid. Humanities are simply outside his wheelhouse. Foreign language might not even be on his boat.
That’s OK. He just has to survive this exam week and he can graduate Thursday next.

I’m listening to and reading his translations.
Have you ever noticed how ridiculously complicated these Latin sentences are?
I mean really!?! What an inefficient way to communicate.
No wonder that shit is a “dead language”.

Yoda’s pretty old, think he’s actually (ancient) Roman and that’s why he speaks that way?
Perhaps they should just call Latin class ‘Yoda-speak’?

Categories: on being a mom | Tags: , , , , , | 1 Comment

my kind of stupid

I’m a strange sort of girl. And I’m cool with that.
My husband is a strange sort of guy. And he’s cool with that.

What’s cool about our strangeness is that we’re strange in similar and different ways.
In the ways we’re similarly weird, it’s kind of nice that we match up. In the ways in which our weirdness differs, it’s actually kind of refreshing to experience a different sort of strange.

There’s a saying from our beloved Firefly.

That’s us up one side and down the other. (So much so he wrote it into his wedding vows.)
We’re each other’s kind of strange/weird/stupid.
Yet here we are, completely different kinds of strange/weird/stupid too.

My weird tends to manifest in super-girlie-spazzy kinds of ways.
YBW’s weird tends to manifest in well…randomly weird ways.

I love that he’s strange.
Honestly, it’s one of the things I love most about him.
He’s not super inclined to give too many f**ks about what other folks think about him so he feels free to let his freak flag fly.
He’s intrinsically kind, so his weirdness isn’t hurtful to others, perhaps a bit self-deprecating, but not hurtful to himself.

We have the most precious moments. Sacred little vignettes of strange bouncing off each other. Moments that often end with one or the other of us remarking that it seems a shame no one but us just experienced the perfection our weirdness created.
One such moment in the car yesterday. I honestly can’t remember what he did that triggered the feeling in me, but I was overcome with affection for him.
I said, I am truly, madly, deeply in love with you.
I told him I adored his strangeness and that he was indeed my kind of stupid.
He took my hand and kissed it softly before letting out a little giggle.

After the month we’ve had, we need those moments. Teeny little glimmers of love and hope and our own sort of stupidity to keep us grounded. To keep life real. To remind us that our love is the same and different kind of weird.

My beloved is weird. And I’m cool with that.
I love his for his strangeness. In ways I never imagined possible.
We’re each other’s kind of stupid. And I wouldn’t have it any other way.

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

the difference between planning life and living life

“Life is what happens to you while you’re busy making other plans.”
This quote is from Beautiful Boy (Darling Boy) a song by John Lennon. Turns out it was originally from an article written for Reader’s Digest by a guy called Allen Saunders.
Only that’s not really the point I making.

My point is that even the best life plans can become waylaid by simply living your life.

As I get back into the routine of my life after a death, and birthdays and as we anticipate Thing G’s graduation and a house full of people, I know I’ll plan. I know I’ll make lists, and organize time, and tasks, and school assignments.
I’ll create my summer schedule. But I also know I’ll drop everything to go do something fun. Or I’ll spend more porch life time on some days than on others. I know important things will pop up.

All my planning, and list making, and organization will aid me in accomplishing what I set out to do, but I’ll have to be flexible. Because sometimes life is what’s happening all around and in between plans and lists.
As I grow and mature as a human, (refusing to put away laundry notwithstanding) I’m learning to accept that things don’t always go my way. (After my childhood, you’d think I’d already mastered that knowledge, but that’s another whole post.)
Things don’t always go my way. But sometimes they go an even better way. That’s why I have to accept that can only execute a portion of what I plan. Because as mad as my planning skills are, the possibility of being surprised by life can be a lovely experience!

Life happens whether or not you’ve penciled it into your book. And for an uptight control freak list lady like me, that’s not always the most comfortable way to function. (Understatement much?)
I’ll continue to plan. I’ll accept what happens, planned or not.
This is my journey through life, if I’m so busy worrying about planning and not being present for what happens, it’s not going to be any good at all.

You know what Ferris said:

Ferris knows what’s up. He had the best skive day in the history of all skive days!

Categories: me | Tags: , , , , , | 4 Comments

Blog at WordPress.com.

Pointless Overthinking

Understanding myself and the world I live in.

Water for Camels

Encouragement and Development for Social Workers and Those with a Mission of Helping Others

Anxiety The Bitch

We are present in the millions, yet we remain unheard

J. A. Allen

Scribbles on Cocktail Napkins

Mistakes & Adventures

What I've always wanted

Persevere

By Dan Sims

In A Messy World

I live in a world of fantasy, so keep your reality away from me.

Living In the Sweet Spot

"You can clutch the past so tightly to your chest that it leaves your arms too full to embrace the present." Jan Glidewell

Waking up on the Wrong Side of 50

Navigating the second half of my life

Sawblades In Your Walkman

effervescing with muchness

Must Be This Tall To Ride

I'm a single dad documenting his journey. A guy trying to walk a higher path. And messing up. A lot.

Staying Southern

A guide to living a Southern life outside the South

rhondastephens

To Catch A Falling Cactus

OSCAR HOKEAH

Kiowa & Cherokee

ChrissyAdventures

Everyday is an Adventure. Embrace it

Kana Wanders

Life in Kana-text (er... CONtext)

Spring into Summer

finding my voice and speaking my truth

%d bloggers like this: