Posts Tagged ‘here and now’

On Track

August 25, 2016

I’m super stoked right now.

I just finished reading the last bit of my assigned reading for one of my classes.

It’s so nice to have it done, to have understood and digested a lot of it too.

Oh.

I’m sure I will have “forgotten” most of it by the time class rolls around, but there is a lot more going on in my brain than my mind wants me to acknowledge.

Also.

Fuck.

I am so lucky.

How I made it to where I am considering the trauma I underwent from pre-birth on, it’s a fucking miracle.  Just reading about it in my texts books sometimes overwhelms me, but I feel lucky, graced, blessed.

I mean.

I have always secretly believed I was something special, shh, don’t tell, that there was just something intrinsically different in me, yeah, yeah, terminal uniqueness is also a quality that can separate me out and make me unhappy, but I’m talking about more than that, something different.

If life were fair I would be dead.

Hell.

I wouldn’t have been born, I shouldn’t have considering how sick my mom was, how traumatic things were for her when I was born and then the innumerable things that happened as I grew up and I mean, can you just say resilient?

I am so resilient.

So even though I can get through the big things, sometimes the little things, job conflict, will throw me for such a loop I can’t get the hell out of the way to gain any kind of perspective on it.

I mean.

I did have fear and it was not a fun time yesterday after I set my boundary with my boss, but I had to set the boundary and though the response was not what I would have preferred, it wasn’t as bad as all that in the scheme of things I have undergone and gone through.

But my brain blows shit up.

I also am acutely aware of my part.

I people please, I am a perfectionist, I can be over accommodating of the needs of the people for whom I work.

Boundaries were crossed early on in my job and I didn’t address them when they happened.

The past, can’t change it, but I can move forward and not keep doing the same things.

I have been well aware of that too, that I can’t go back and beat myself up for not doing it better, no should’s please, I did what I could in the each situation and have been given time to assess how it works or doesn’t work for me.

I adopted a here and now sort of attitude towards the whole thing.

What can I do right now, right here, to take care of myself?

Pretty fucking basic.

And so, I got a break today, appropriately timed and well delineated and fuck, I got school reading done and I got to rest, not really as I was digesting really big psychology theory, but I got to be out of the way in my space in the house, quiet with a cup of tea and a book.

I returned happy to work and there were no other altercations, issues, or weirdness.

Ok.

That’s not true, I still felt a little on pins and needles, but that again, is my feeling and asserting a need, even though it be a small need, for me, is a very big deal.

I remember well a father of one of my charges told me years ago, seriously, six, years ago, “Carmen, your problem is you can’t ask for what you need, you have to speak up.”

He wasn’t saying it to be mean, he was saying it because he wanted me to ask for what I needed, that he knew that I was not capable of doing it and that it was ok and not just ok, but allowed.

Encouraged even.

It blew me away then, and I don’t think it actually sank in for some time, I was allowed to ask for what I need.

What a gift he gave me, you are allowed to ask for what you need!

Now the difference is, with time and perspective, also knowing that though I ask and it may not be met and in that doing I get to make sure I don’t harbor resentment.

I fail to ask many times because I anticipate not getting the need met, so why bother, and then the resentments flourish and I’m stuck in the bathroom sitting on the toilet “peeing.”

I’m really praying and asking for help and clarity and what is the next action to take.

Lucky for me I have faith and I don’t have to explain that either.

And friends.

Fuck me.

I am so lucky to have the friends I have.

The amount of support I have gotten from my friends is unbelievable to this person who for so very long felt rather alone and not able to cope or ask for help.

I wasn’t allowed to ask for help.

I don’t know when that got hammered into my head, but man, it was from a very young age.

Now I’m like, help, help, help, all the time.

Well.

Perhaps not quite like that, although there are times when I am incapable of asking for help, they have gotten fewer and farther between.

And as I feel this softening in me, this loosening up, this growing, I am more and more and more grateful for these experiences I have.

I can help so many people just be showing up and saying, hey, I went through that too and here’s how you survive, here’s how you are not a victim, here’s how you in fact, are allowed to prosper, to thrive.

Thrive.

That’s what I want.

Therein lies the striving and the living and the having fun and oh!  The fun countdown is on.

Two more days of work, then I am out, out, out.

Out to the dusty dust and the art and the big, wide open skies, and floating across the playa on my bicycle and smiling from ear to ear and wearing big pouffy crinolines and ridiculous amounts of flash and bang in my hair.

Out where my heart sings 24 hours a day and my friends are all around and though there is a lot of work, it really is so much fun.

“Funishment” a friend coined it last year.

Yup.

And god damn, I am ready for it.

So ready.

I really am.

Bring it on!

Bring on the funishment!

This lady needs some.

Yes.

And.

Yes, please.

All The Mother Fucking Things

August 22, 2016

I got it done.

I almost cannot believe it.

I finished the reading for my Gestalt class so I can write the paper tomorrow.

Brief aside, so early into the blog, but.

I know I’m on the right track when the last sentence of the book, involving an imaginary conversation that Fritz Perls is heaving with Freud (a dead Freud, seven years gone at that point) stirs me to tears.

I was moved.

And I am excited that I have found what I believe to be the therapy modality that I want to work with and also.

Heh.

All things Burning Man.

Gestalt and Burning Man.

Yup.

I have a desire to write my dissertation on a theory I have around Gestalt and the evolution of Burning Man, the here and nowness of things.  I am rather nascent in my explorations, but I do know that I am heading in the direction of what I want to do and I am so very happy to think about combining two different things into a project that could lead me to dissertation.

Anyway.

I get a head of myself.

Which is so not Gestalt, and so not Burning Man.

But is so easy for me to do.

In the moment, I am sitting in my pajamas, yes, before 8p.m. on a “school night” for me as I will be getting up early, early, early to drive to Sonoma for work in the morning.

I made the decision to stay here overnight and go up early so that I could wrap up any lose ends and take care of things for my imminent trip to the playa.

I cleaned the house, re-packed my clothes bin for the burn, I had a suspicion that I was not really well packed, that I may have over packed a little in fear and went through all my gear to make sure I really was going to use it or wear it.

I’ll only be out for four days and four nights.

Which means 8 outfits.

I paired down a little what I had and organized it better.

I was tempted to go back through all my bins, but when I did a mental inventory I knew that I was fine and really well set up for the event.

My camera has freshly charged batteries, I have my back up phone battery charger, I have all my tent, bedding, sleep, cook, cooler, and hair supplies.

Hello.

You know this girl is going to get her big, pink, flowered hair on.

Please.

Then I took care of business.

I paid rent early.

I don’t like to have that hanging over my head before going out there, and it feels good to be accountable.

I won’t have to worry about paying any bills when I get back, I can just ease back into my life with little thought–paid my DMV renewal on my scooter, early, but hey, the bill came in the mail, I don’t want my dusty brain to forget it when I get back, and organized my ticket, vehicle pass, and yes, I printed off my Early Arrival pass.

I have them all right here, right at my elbow, just waiting for my return on Friday night.

I’ll be leaving work by 6p.m. at the latest and returning the rental car to SFO, grabbing a car from the rental drop off to home, then my ride share will come and get me, it’s looking like 8:30 p.m. for the pick up.

We load up and drive out.

I confirmed with him via e-mail, updated him in regards to groceries and water–suggested that we not get water in SF, but rather pick it up at the SafeWay in Reno which is open 24 hours.  Less weight in the car, less gas to get us up over the Sierra’s.

He totally agreed.

I also went shopping for a few things to have at the house for when I get back.

And I’ve packed my suitcase, so recently unpacked, again for this week’s work in Glen Ellen.

All that I have left to do is dry the load of laundry in the dryer and write this blog.

Heck.

I even addressed all my Burning Man postcards and stamped them up.

I met with two ladies today and did the deal, too.

Which was super good and really grounding, they are such gifts, I am so lucky to get to work with them and share my experience, strength and hope.

My other lady did a phone check in and by the time all that was done I felt really ready for the next phase of my development.

An extraordinary thing that.

One which lead to me realizing that I had no real need to go out all willy nilly and secure further stuff and things for that thing in the desert.

That, I, in fact, had everything I needed and a little more (one white crinoline and one black crinoline), that there was no reason to stir my anxiety pot by driving around town in the VW Bug rental car.

Especially when I got the perfect parking spot in front of the house last night.

Why move it and cause myself stress to buy things I don’t really need, but think I might want.

Nah.

I got it.

I really am ready.

The few things I have left to get are just a couple of food stuffs that I want to wait until Reno to procure–some apples, one more container of unsweetened vanilla almond milk, and some carrots.

As for the rest of it.

It’s done.

I am so glad I didn’t leave the neighborhood, I am so glad I took time to re-pack and re-organize and also to realize that I really am done.

It’s done.

I’m ready.

The rest of the week is to show up kind and compassionate with sweetness, tolerance, and love to work.

To write a six page Gestalt paper and to do some reading for another of my classes.

Thank you Sunday.

For being, well, easy like Sunday morning.

Giggle.

It’s been fruitful, restful, and far less stressful than I thought it would be.

Hella grateful.

Seriously.

Limbo Land

August 19, 2016

At least it has a pretty moon.

I stopped my car, my cute little VW rental in powder blue, on the down slope of the road.

Sonoma Mountain Road.

To pause, stop, appreciate the beauty of the big, full, pumpkin orange moon in the sky, peeping through the trees.

I took a photograph with my phone.

Perhaps not the best way to capture that glory, but a small remembrance of the moment, a stop, a pause, push the reset button and breathe.

I’m out of town.

I’m out of my element.

I’m in Glenn Ellen.

I’m doing the travel nanny gig in the hills replete with vineyards and blackberry brambles.

It is a pretty place.

I keep using that adjective, but it is apropos.

As I drove off the property headed to Sonoma proper, the town, not the mountain road, I caromed around the corners and marveled that this was my life.

I was a little sad, I’m not quite sure why, a sweet sad song on the radio perhaps, a hint of melancholia, a wish to be with someone, other than my lonesome, but I gently reminded myself that though lonely in the moment, I am really never alone.

The sun slanted ahead of me, as it was going down in the West and I was heading East, splashing a gold liquid shine onto the trees and the hills and the dry yellow grass.

It’s drought time up here.

Has been for a while.

But even with the absence of moisture, there was no absence of beauty.

I was also deeply reminded that I am a California native.

I was born here.

And though I was raised for a good part of my life away from it, it speaks to me in murmurs and memories, it has seared itself into my being and my first senses and experiences happened here in the Golden State.

The synchronicity of it did not escape me, the almost deja vu like experience of driving in a VW Bug down twisty roads in the golden highlighted moment of the day right before dusk falls and the sun sets.

My mom’s boyfriend when I was a young girl had a VW Bug.

I have many memories of being in that little car.

Which was not so little when I recall it.

I used to ride around in the back, lying on the shelf between the back seat and the window.

They didn’t give a fuck so much then about car seats and seat belts.

I would watch the sky overhead pass and the clouds too, would impress themselves upon me, layering me with all good things, all things California.

I took many naps in the back seat of that car.

The rental car handled beautifully and hugged the corners and seemed to almost drive itself.

It took me a minute to get used to craning all the way around to make sure I was backing up well and that there were different blindspots to the vehicle than in other cars I have driven.

But.

It has begun to feel like home.

Being in that car.

Transported from this house in Glenn Ellen and back out into the world.

I did not want to return.

There was a moment, unacknowledged while in it, but there nevertheless.

I can feel it in my heart.

When I thought, I just might keep on driving.

Take it for a spin down the coast, ramble about the state, fuck the job, don’t come back, see you later, alligator.

Of course.

I did no such thing.

Rather I zoom zipped over to Sonoma to the clubhouse there and got right with God.

Brief pit stop at the Whole Foods to pick up some hair conditioner since I have run out and a couple of late season white nectarines.

One more day.

Then I’ll be back to the city for the weekend.

I canceled on a date I had for this Sunday.

Not sure I can afford the time to hang out and also, oh man.

I have to pack for that thing in the desert.

All my friends be like packing maniacs right now and I am stuck, in limbo, in Glenn Ellen, mentally going over what I have to do.

I was hoping to do a dry run on my tent, but I don’t think it’s going to happen.

I’ve got bins to fill.

Clothes, gear, this and that, stuff and things.

I ordered a few more things on Amazon this past week to make sure I wouldn’t have to run around willy nilly in my last hours to gather supplies.

See I have to pack this weekend, there is no other time.

I’ll be back here, in Glenn Ellen, either Sunday evening or early Monday morning for one more work week before I go.

I’ll work up until 6p.m. on Friday, then speed on out of town, drop the rental car back at SFO, catch a hired car back home, pee, then pack my cooler and smash everything into my ride share to the playa, who’ll be picking me up at 8:30p.m.

We will be driving all night to end up on the playa Saturday morning.

I hope to get my tent and such set up before it gets too hot and then sleep through the worst of the heat.

I have evening plans.

Yeah, ahahahaha, plans at Burning Man.

But I do.

A girl friend is having a birthday party and I’m a going.

I can’t wait.

I will get dressed up.

In what?

Who the fuck knows, but dressed up I will.

And I get a head of myself.

Pull back.

Pause.

Breathe.

Because I am still here, in Glenn Ellen.

Still doing my homework and reading and keeping up with all things graduate school.

Because that’s happening too.

I have two papers to write before I leave for playa and a lot of reading to do.

Not as bad as last year, but enough.

All the things.

They will get done.

Or.

They won’t.

Either way.

I’m alright and the moon, like a quiet place to rest in the sky, my pillow of beauty to lay my cheek against, moves asunder and smooth through the night.

My heart a float.

Here and now.

Here and now.

Here.

And.

Now.

It’s Been A Day

August 17, 2016

One in which I spent too much damn time in my head.

However.

I called in the cavalry.

I amend that.

I texted in the cavalry.

I also got myself out to a little hoe down of my fellows in Sonoma and got right with God and then made some phone calls from there.

I can fall off the beam easily and have really black and white thinking.

At one point today I was ready to call it complete quits at my job.

Not because there’s something screamingly bad with my job, rather, there’s something off in me, something where my ability to speak up for myself and my needs gets lost in the shuffle and the next thing you know I’m doing a job that is not compatible with my needs and I’m a wreck.

I have to communicate.

Ugh.

No fun.

Except.

Maybe it can be, maybe I am here having this experience because I need to learn, again, how to do this thing called life, how to reconcile conflict and draw up some boundaries that are good for me and empower me.

I deserve the job I want and I can probably have it here and now as soon as I can draw upon the resources that are available to me.

My friends.

Who bolster me all the time.

I don’t see myself very well and sometimes I forget that I am a valuable asset, that I am smart and capable and worthy of my hire.

I have had this come up before.

How many times have I gotten to suss this out, many.

However, I am feeling a lot more stable in my need to articulate what I need and to ask for the compensation due the nature of the accommodating that I do for my family.

See.

I’m happy to accommodate.

But what I have discovered is that I need to be compensated, to continue being flexible and rolling with the punches and what have you, I need to get properly taken care of and I have lost my ability to speak up for what works best for me.

There is no malicious intent with my employers, god am I aware of that.

The malicious intent is within me, those things that I grew up with, the danger, and it was very real, of asking for what I needed.

I knew better than to ask for what I wanted, those things never got met and as for what I needed, I didn’t know, my needs were overwhelmed with the needs of my family.

There have been plenty of times in the past where I was asked what I wanted and I couldn’t tell you to save my life, it was so much easier for me to just ask what you wanted and roll the fuck over.

I didn’t even realize what I was doing and I did a lot of shoving down of unpalatable things to keep the balance going and to save myself from being annihilated.

That sounds extreme, but you get beaten for asking for what you need or asserting your needs, for a little while and get back to me on your stance then.

That shit stays with you.

I have done work.

I will continue to do work.

This is part of my work.

Recovery is integral and an absolute necessity.

School has been amazing.

Friends.

Oh my darling, dear, sweet, loving friends who advocate for me when I am not always so inwardly supported, have been instrumental in this.

Finding the support to take the actions that to me and my personality feel absolutely mind blowing and devastating to do has been crucial.

All the walking through the fear.

I have taken in so much love and support, especially this past week, to know that I can take the next steps to ask for what I need at the job.

And.

The best part?

I will be taken care of.

I always am.

I get to fuck it up.

I get to make a mess, I’m messy, it might be messy, I might fall on my face.

That will be ok.

Part of the process.

Part of living.

Learning and bearing witness, gently, when I can to my own process.

Really when I think about it after all the trauma, drama, and agonizing shit that happened to me it’s a fucking miracle that I am who I am, that I have what I have, that I have gotten to break out and make something of this life, that I didn’t roll over and die.

I am alive.

I am fucking resilient.

I am a living fucking testimony that you can get out and you can get better and that life is exquisite and amazing, astounding in it’s joys and astonishments.

The fawn that I startled out of the bushes today on the edge of the rental property.

The red tail hawk in the sky shrieking for its dinner.

The quails chasing through the underbrush.

The sun, warm on my face, I again turn toward the nut brown skin that is in me and glow with fire and heat.

The black berry brambles tumbling down the hill full of fruit.

The sun through the trees as it sinks golden and full with possibility as I climb Sonoma Mountain Road.

The boys, both of whom have found ways to further endear themselves to me as though sensing that tremulous moment when I was offered a job today, the mom having gotten my number through a friend at school, desperate to hire me and get the ball rolling.

Except.

I don’t want to work 50-60 hours a week and go to grad school.

No way.

No how.

In reality.

I already work that much.

My job fluctuates during the summer between 35-45 and since I started school between 28-35 hours a week.

Through in my recovery and that’s easily another 15-20 hours of my time.

I can’t even imagine trying to work more than that and go to school.

I knew that and gently thanked the woman to whom I was speaking and said thank you so much, but I can’t do the job you require.

She begged me to keep her in mind and I will, but not for me.  I also suggested an agency that she could go to.

There’s plenty of jobs out there should I fall flat asking for what I need or my needs are unable to get met at my current position.

It doesn’t mean that my needs won’t get met.

They will.

I just have to speak up for them.

And.

Big.

Deep.

Breath.

I will.

 

 

You Smell Like A

August 9, 2016

Field of flowers.

Blush.

Thank you.

That is always the hope.

I have such a nose for needing to smell the good things, the lovely things, the dry grass, the smell of the oak trees, the bark dry, the lichen tight on the tree its own kind of scent, the curl of leaves, the soft sage and smoke smell of one of my class mates.

I’ve begun to study Gestalt.

And there is something there.

I get it.

It is very here and now.

In this moment.

And in this moment is God.

God is not in the past and God is not in the future.

God is right here, right now, in this place, in the words tumbling from my fingers onto the keyboard, the sound of music in my head phones, it is the two stars I saw falling from the sky while I was in the hot tub.

A stillness that I was in, a space, looking up and out and there, the flash on the sky.

And the creamy smoke of the Milky Way a pale smudge on the midnight blue depths above me.

I was chatting with one of my cohort and explaining the smell that she gave off.

We had to do an exercise in class in which we broke down sense by sense what we were seeing, tasting, touching, hearing, smelling.

She smelled earthy and mineral, like clean cool water, she also smelled herbaceous and of what I first thought was lavender, but was not, rather it was lingonberries, mulberries, and the smell was not so much of the berries, but of the leaves themselves, and underneath that I could smell clay and lime ash.

It was subtle and soft and powdery.

One of my classmates smelled like honeyed turmeric and ginger and saffron.

One of my classmates was blue.

But not blue in mood, just blue in color.

Not a sad blue either, rather a cerulean blue, a Dutch Boy blue, a Van Dyke Blue.

It was really an interesting experience.

My friend replied that I smelled like a field of flowers.

Success!

I wish to always smell good.

There is something divine and comforting about smells.

Wood smoke.

Hot cotton sheets, or line dried cotton sheets hot with sunshine and summer breeze and grass and clover.

Oh.

God.

The smell of clover can be so rich and intoxicating.

There is small bright, heady patch of clover that is in the Golden Gate Park smells like French music sounds to me in my head, my thoughts have smells and colors and love.

I feel loved.

I am also listening to a Spotify playlist that my friend put together for me and I feel loved and thought of and bright with that kind of joy that is bubbles in sunflower fields.

I have a bit of an imagination.

Thank you God for this experience.

I feel a lot more settled, a lot more connected, and a lot more myself.

Familiarity has not bred contempt, but rather a kind of closeness that can be unbearable until I just collapse and accept it and let it all in.

We are so lonely in this part of town

The sweep of the music, the golden spires of notes, the spheres sing and the stars fall over the fields of dry grass the deer pass through the shadows of the trees from the moonlight cadence and I dance here, in my bed a slow shifting of love and acceptance and ease.

Thank you my friend.

Thank you for loving me.

I love you too.

Very much.

I may not be able to put together the best mixed tape ever, but I can put down some of the words and the feelings and the colors.

The images and sensations that I get to have.

So many.

Memories and love and tenderness and hot days and summer, grass, apple trees, the wind in the lilacs, the heady bowed over blooms of peonies on the edge of the border of lawn between houses.

A revelation.

Instead of a fence to keep you out.

Instead of a wall that you have to climb.

Or one that I have to knock down.

Perhaps all I need is a field of flowers to keep my safe.

Just a little border there between you and me, a sweet, soft, petal, a musical of blossoms blowing over the grass, the apples like paper sails of hope and dreams and the reverence of of sunshine on my soul.

Clots of dandelion seeds.

Wishes on the air.

The organ grinder and the ferris wheel splayed against the spread of heavens and the carnival swings into gear and the smell of hot cotton candy and the soft powder of sawdust and popcorn.

Summer.

Cut grass.

All the memories all the evocations.

The witchery and the bright eye turned to the coin in the sky.

Money that cannot be spent except in reverence to the moment unfolding.

Always.

All the time.

Sunshine.

Burn it the sunshine.

These coins I carry in my pocket, pennies and coppers and two bits of silver that are just slices and slivers of time that I cannot spend but with you.

Bright notes bell on the guitar string.

Somewhere between my heart and my head I settle into a place and soften, let go, and give you all the pain.

Because I don’t have to carry it alone.

I never did.

My mistake.

I lay it now down in that field of flowers.

A crushing outline of my body in the tall grass wrought with wildflowers.

Alive.

To get up and walk away and hold my hand out to you over the carcasses of flowers adorned to my body.

I am here.

You are there.

And in this field.

We are everywhere.

All stars.

All love.

All bound for this moment.

This here.

This now.

Love.

Love.

I have paid my dues.

Take my hand and let’s run breathless toward that bright horizon always pushing toward the moment up the road, to that crest.

There.

Just there.

Just here.

Just Now.

Just.

And always.

And.

Forever.

Love.


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