Welcome to my Weekend Coffee Share, hosted by Natalie the Explorer. The drink for me is green tea today, and the background music is peaceful ambient. Actually, Saturday got away from me; I started this post yesterday but was not quite finished until this Sunday morning. Bear with me please! There is some good to share. 🙂
I’ve been posting a little this week about my trip to Rochester, NY, a much needed getaway.. I returned Monday at noon, and boy, was Bixby ever glad to see me! I was glad to get home, as there was a lot going on here while I was on vacation. There has been a family situation, and I am trying not to let it get me down. Sadly, my reading has brought me to the term Anosognosia, which describes what one of my loved ones is going through: refusal to accept that one is ill and needs medical help. The serenity prayer is going through my head so often now. Unconditional love means we love each other no matter what.
The Serenity Prayer also helped me get through a sudden, unplanned repair to my car. Sigh. I can handle it, but I can only handle my own reactions. I’ve been happy to see my local family and friends again, though.
Back in Florida, I’ve enjoyed sitting on my back porch in the sun eating breakfast a few times, but I fondly remember sitting on my friend’s patio in Rochester eating breakfast, lunch, and sometimes dinner. I even caught a beautiful sunrise once! Rochester is also home to many beautiful and historical sites.
There was a lot to enjoy of nature, whether rain or shine! We actually found Susan B. Anthony’s gravesite in the rain with rain ponchos on, but did not find that of Frederick Douglass. His statue, however, was located in the nearby park which we visited later at night. Such a beautiful sight.
My summer break will end soon, but I am at peace with that! I like knowing I can pay for my car repairs, and I certainly want to plan for future vacations. Considering I really love teaching overall, I don’t mind getting back to that while earning a paycheck, but I am planning future vacations. 🙂 Life is short! All I can do is do what I enjoy, live up to my responsibilities, and be there for those I love while respecting my own needs, which likely looks different for all of us.
Have a great weekend and an even better week to come!
Welcome to my Weekend Coffee Share, hosted by Natalie the Explorer. I am once more drinking green tea today. Tomorrow, there will be coffee! It is a treat for me maybe three days a week. In the background, my ‘cafe’ is playing Living Room songs by Olafur Arnalds. It’s sort of emotional. Perhaps it will invoke some deep poetry in all of us, huh?
I am in a poetry mood lately. There is a lot going on in my family, and I am being told by people close to me not to tell others so much. What they don’t understand is that I am a writer. I either make up fantastical fiction or I tell my story. It is mine to tell. I process things, and I share them because I should never be ashamed of the battles I have fought for good reason, and perhaps it will help someone else who is suffering in silence. I just won’t suffer like that anymore. As Sylvia Plath once said, “everything in life is writable about if you have the outgoing guts to do it, and the imagination to improvise. The worst enemy to creativity is self-doubt.”
Having said that, I am not spilling my guts here. There has been a lot going on in my family and I never know if I’m saying the right thing or reacting the best way. I suppose that’s because I’m human. However, I have been building a community. I am more open with others and honest; some have a lot in common with me, and others are just good listeners. They are my friend because I am no longer closed up, no longer flying under the radar or not really present. I wrote a poem this week about how it feels to be a mother, daughter, friend, woman who makes mistakes or is told she is doing the wrong thing, and how I must judge myself less. It is titled Life’s Ceaseless Circus and can be found here: https://pamelascanepa.wordpress.com/2021/07/08/lifes-ceaseless-circus/ Being an adult, I will deal with any fallout from mistakes I make. I try to treat others this way as well. As a mother, I may not have always treated family members with that attitude, but I am learning.
Lately, life has seemed like a traveling circus, going through rough terrain, hills, valleys, deserted roads and sometimes, fun towns. Get to a peaceful place, then get pulled into steep hills again. If you can love unconditionally, there is no way out, just enjoy the views and brace yourself for rough times. I believe I can maintain boundaries, take care of myself, and still love unconditionally. I am trying anyhow.
I have been through a breakup in the last few months, yet he still checks in and asks about my family. My ex-husband now lives in town again and is friendly with my family, but I live my own life. I am talking to and associating with friends I had not spoken to in a long time because of the whole focus of raising my kid the best way. He is grown now, making his own choices. I don’t make my choices with him at the center anymore. I make my choices with what is best for me in a way that I intend not to hurt others. I’m trying to live my life in a way that practices acceptance of others and kindness. I know I still at times shut others out; it seems I have to temper that need to maintain balance.
So, I’m learning and trying to practice forgiveness and acceptance, and that is something one must temper with boundaries. I believe it is totally possible. In the spirit of second chances, I wrote the story Crossroads Diner #205 and have self-published it for entry into a Rave Reviews Book Club short story contest. It is free to read in Kindle Unlimited. Check it out at https://www.amazon.com/Crossroads-between-Pamela-Schloesser-Canepa-ebook/dp/B098269VSN
Besides writing poems for the blog and my short story, I am beginning ’28 Days of Ellie.” Each morning, I will write at least one entry either about her personality, her likes, dislikes, beliefs and/or dialogues with her and other characters. Since I finished the book on Sould Coaching, I decided this would be a fun, creative way to boost my writing and make my character become real. Wish me luck!
Have a great weekend, and an even better week next week! I am planning to travel a little. You’re sure to hear about it. 🙂
Welcome to my Weekend Coffee Share, hosted by Natalie the Explorer. Having been fortunate enough to sleep in this morning, I am drinking hazelnut half-caff this morning! Pull up a chair and your favorite beverage. I decided on Kraugbin for our musical cafe ambience this morning.
I’ll regale you with my wisdom. Heh, scratch that. How about tales of my topsy-turvy life and how I’m managing? Though I’m not a fan of reality lately, I sure won’t let it defeat me. I’ll let it throw its punches and I’ll fight back. All metaphorically, of course. You can tell me about your life lately.
If you don’t know me, I’ll just tell you I was diagnosed with an anxiety disorder 1.5 years ago. I am no longer ashamed of this. Being a writer, blogger, etc., I am in a place to share about myself in ways that may help others or that may simply connect me with other like-minded individuals. Holding it in prevents many opportunities for me to be myself, encourage others, and to be honest about my life. In fact, holding things in has shut me down in many ways throughout my life. That is no longer my MO. I’ve been dealing with the anxiety, and I got through the pandemic as well as teaching middle schoolers; then suddenly, around my son’s twenty-fifth birthday, two important people in my life have left my life.
It is my birthday today, and two days ago I felt I didn’t have the energy to even acknowledge it. I am not ashamed to say that. I am a human being with emotions. However, I’m determined to always survive the storm.
So, I decided to just indulge in some of my favorite things this weekend.
Mom and I started by going out for Thai food and a glass of wine. A church friend, also a Gemini, invited me to her house for steamed crab and salad for lunch today. I invited my mom, and neighbor, and a co-worker, another empty-nester mom for dinner at a Mediterranean restaurant. Tomorrow, I shall take my dog to the dog park, something that always fills me with joy whether there are people there or not. If there are other people there, they are dog-people, the best kind ever!
I feel good about my health, fitness, and my habits. I feel good in the skin I’m in! Though I still struggle with pain at times, I don’t let it stop me. In fact, the summer I was told I had arthritis, 8 years ago, was a summer I spent on the couch reading a 1,000 page book. Of course, I still do read, but I mix it up with movement or using the phone Kindle while on my porch exerciser.
So, my life is just slightly topsy-turvy, but I still know what are my favorite things and have the means to fill my life with them, as well as being surrounded by positive people that encourage me constantly!
I’m getting ready soon to have that lunch with a fellow Gemini, and Mediterranean food later. It promises to be fun and life-affirming!
To me… Every week on Saturday, bloggers participate in a Weekend Coffee Share. It is now hosted by Natalie the Explorer at https://natalietheexplorer.home.blog/2021/03/05/doors-in-morocco/ I join in this worldwide, virtual Coffee Share almost weekly. Since I am joining a new group of bloggers, and you, reader, may not have been here before, introductions may be in order. You see, Weekend Coffee Share can help fill the need for social connection during the COVID lockdown and social distancing era.
Last Saturday (or the week before) Iwelcomed readers in to my imaginary cafe complete with fuzzy dog, sun through window blinds, and Nina Simone playing in the background. If we had just met in this cafe, you’d likely see me writing, as I am working on another book when the muse (and my focus) revisits me. How would the conversation go? (Please don’t mind if I assign you a part in this play):
“What are you writing?” You’d ask.
“Oh, just notes, ideas, reflections on my sleep schedule, what’s working and what’s not, same with managing my anxiety…what’s working and what’s not. Ideas for my book in progress and some observations that could one day become stories or books.”
I realize you might wonder why I just told you all that. “I’m not ashamed of my struggles, but I guess some of that was all TMI.” I chuckle, as I’m older now and worry much less about being judged.
“I’m a writer too,” you say, “here on Spring Break.” When asked, you tell me you’re from Massachusetts, not surprising due to your accent, which is great, because, I tell you, “I’m sort of from New England.”
“What do you mean, ‘sort of?'” you ask.
“My dad was military, so we moved from California, to Illinois, to Minnesota with family, to Iceland, then Virginia, then here. Everyone says I sound like I’m from New England. Lived there from age 5 to 8.”
“Do you work another job, or just write?”
“I teach middle school, and have done so for twenty years. I write when the spirit moves me, which, these days, is sporadically. My focus is not as good as it used to be, but I sponsor a News Club at school. I love encouraging kids to write!”
“What else do you do?”
“Well, I enjoy time with family, I have a twenty-four year old son, and my dog. Having a social life is rare these days with COVID.” I smile under my mask, using my eyes. You are young, and I can’t tell if you’re male or female, not for sure.
Your coffee is ready. “What is a good thing to do while I’m here?” you ask. “My friend will be here to meet me in a few minutes.”
“Go to the beach. The water will still be chilly, but it’s really pleasant for a walk right now. Great for people-watching, too. We’ve got some nice national parks with trails, too. I’m overdue for a beach walk. Whenever I go for one, all worries disappear…I become a happy idiot.”
You tell me that sounds great, but you’d prefer to play some beach volleyball with a bunch of co-eds. Then your friend arrives, a young woman, probably also in college. I’m amazed at how much I’ve told you. I’ve come a long way since college. I still don’t know your gender and decide that it doesn’t matter.
“Thanks for chatting with me, Ma’am,” you say, as I cringe. I don’t want to be a ma’am, as if I’m responsible for what you think of me, and you’ve decided to be ‘carefully’ well-mannered around me. As if I could be your mother. (Oh, guess I could). I’m still not Southern like that. Your friendly chatter was good enough for me.
“Just call me Pam.”
“Okay,” you say. “I’m Joe.”
Or was it Jo? Short for Josephine, like in Little Women? Oh, what does it matter? I could have asked, but it didn’t matter. I just enjoyed the company.
Fictionally and virtually, it has been nice meeting meet you. I hope we meet up in this ‘cafe’ again. If not, I wish you the best in your journeys! Today, it is dreary outside, and after a great night’s sleep, er…read that as passing out on the couch after a crazy, loud week-before-Spring-break teaching week, I am enjoying coffee with creamer after my cereal with blueberries and banana.
Feel free to peruse my blog to find out about books I’ve written, and if you check out my prior posts, you’ll find some interesting reads about my journey through health , anxiety issues, life changes, reaching students, family co-existence, fun with my dog, mental health (my own and my loved ones), etc. My journey is a path to a good place, and I want to be a voice that reaches other voices who may have felt the same, may need commonality, may benefit from my honesty, or may tell me what works for them.
**My title is a reference to my current favorite song, Caution by The Killers. Partial lyrics:
Let me introduce you to the featherweight queen
she’s got Hollywood eyes but she can’t shoot what she sees….
I’m throwing caution, what’s it’s gonna be
Tonight the winds of change are blowing wild and free…
Fearless, it what that song says to me. Though it seems to be a love song, the speaker wants to make a change, and “get out of this town.” You certainly have to be brave and honest with yourself first to make a change. For me, dropping caution means to end fear about sharing myself, my story, or my heart with others. Be brave, know yourself, and be yourself, without shame.
Welcome to my Weekend Coffee Share, and top o’ the mornin’ to you! I just had my matcha green tea, since yesterday was coffee day. Pull up a chair and grab your favorite beverage. My fluffy canine companion might even make an appearance!
I feel hopeful this morning. The sun is out, and it looks like Spring! We do get those starts and stops with Spring in Jacksonville, Florida. I also slept well last night! I socially distanced by eating at home, intended to watch some Netflix after making a review quiz for my classes and speaking to my boyfriend, but fell asleep before turning on the TV. I didn’t miss much, and I sure need more sleep lately!
A quiet night was a welcome balance after a busy, boisterous week as a middle school English teacher. My observation was this week, there was also a full moon this week, yada, yada, yada. I survived. Did you know this past week was Literacy week? Well, we had a little fun, and it makes working during a pandemic much more bearable.
I found out late about Literacy week, so I spread the word to my grade and subject co-workers to wear animal print or animal themed clothing on Friday, stating that we’re “Wild about Books, Reading, etc.” I made a little 3D book for some of my grade level cohorts to wear. It was fun telling the kids why we did this and getting a smile or chuckle, especially from the ones who also love reading! One of my new coworkers who has been stressed lately even said that it made work feel a little better today, and I’m so glad! We are creating a community, with each other and with our students.
I know there are some I’m not reaching yet, but I have whole classes that are kind communities. Was it my doing? I hope that it partly was. I’ll definitely give the kids some credit. I’m starting the Newspaper Club this week and so excited! I even bought a newsprint mask from Etsy! I know, I’m such a dork, but let’s make dorkhood cool…Why not?
So, at least I’ll be using my writing talents in some way: to inspire others. Maybe to also create community. It’s all a work in progress.
Interestingly, I forgot to mention the negatives, only that my week was busy. I forgot my moments of anxiety; they rolled right off my back. I feel like I can overcome anything!
Take care my friends, be safe, and have a great week!
Welcome to my Weekend Coffee Share, where we sit and respond to the ideas that form in our minds, accompanied by the cutest mutt at my feet and David Bowie music in the background. I think it’s a nice little coffee shop, personally. I’m drinking green matcha tea, but you may have your drink of choice. The sun is up, and I’m feeling bright today!
A new day is dawning! There are a lot of changes in our nation coming up, and in my mind as I navigate my health. I try to deal with the worry; it’s a little chaotic, but one can choose to harness the chaos in order to create or destroy. I have new ideas and hope something is going to pan out at work. This would be a bright spot in my work-week while we grow closer to testing season, which, as I live in Florida, is sure to be thrown at us like it’s business as usual despite the COVID pandemic. You know state testing is a money-making venture, right? (*This is not necessarily the opinion of my employer; these are my views alone).
Meanwhile, I am investing in the socio-emotional aspects of teaching and my students’ needs. I’ll admit, there are some I don’t reach, but most of my days are pleasant despite the chaos of middle-school changes. We can harness the chaos and use it for good! I believe that. I will present the proof when it presents itself, LOL! Still, believing it is keeping me going right now. At home, I am keeping up with exercise, eating healthy, and filling up my mind then learning to tune it down when it’s time to relax. I’ve found working a puzzle keeps me from worry, and good thing, because it’s hard to maintain a social life during the pandemic.
Yeah, I haven’t perfected it yet. This week I’ve been making up creative projects for my Highly Advanced and Gifted kids based on Fears and Phobias or Animal Wisdom. It requires some work time at home. I’ll work a little more on that while the ‘cafe’ is quiet. My dog deserves a walk later though, and I could use the sunshine.
I may have mentioned before that I have a little bit of writer’s block lately. I am dealing with anxiety and ways to tune down the noise when I need to sleep. Journaling helps me release frustrations, and I am not at the point where I can share all of this or convert it to cathartic fiction, though I believe that may happen one day. I did write a poem based on fear and how it blocks our creative energies and ability to be there for others or to show love. You may read it here: https://pamelascanepa.wordpress.com/2021/01/08/the-occupation/
It’s quiet in this cafe right now except for the music playing and the occasional pitter-patter of my dog’s feet on the tile floor. Right now, Harlem River by Kevin Morby is playing, a new song I discovered by accident, a little jazzy, bluesy, and sultry with electric guitar in the background. Check it out! I’m typing while it’s quiet, but I look forward to your shares of what’s going on in your world. Have a great week, everyone, and be optimistic. Change can be a great thing, and if it’s not, we will adapt until change will come around again!
Welcome to my Weekend Coffee Share, hosted by Allison at Eclectic Ali. I have my cute canine right by me. Pull up a chair and your favorite morning beverage!
I know it’s a frequent topic, but foremost in my mind right now is work. I mean, I can’t focus enough to really write much. There’s an idea on my laptop with 3, 000 words written, and I’m just taking my time. Sitting at the computer for too long bugs my back. It’s okay, I’ve accepted that I just need to be more active right now.
Consider that, from March to June 1st, I was on lockdown, teaching from home, at the computer most of the day. I was so afraid when told we had to go back to in-person school, but now I see it was the best for me. I see how it benefits the students as well.
Lately, COVID cases are really rising, and I personally know someone who has COVID. It makes you think about things. Of course, I’m careful, but still…the COVID anxiety is real. All of this makes me wish I could hug my students. Some of them are really special, and with all that’s going on, I just want to be a positive for others.
Of course, there are times I’m just so tired or times I’m really nervous, full of anxious worry. But this attempt at positivity is helping that; sometimes it works to replace that anxious mental energy.
In these strange times, it makes me want to be sure my last words to anyone are kind words, or at the very least, to leave the impression to this person that I accept them fully.
I am trying not to suffer in boredom or feel trapped. Exercise, focus on work, and trying to meditate, these things are helping.
I made a big deal over a student who designed her own mask. I’ve written on a few of my plain white masks, because to me, they are just a blank slate. Added to that, is the fact I can’t wear beautiful silk masks anymore. They hamper my breathing, they make me feel hot, and heaven forbid there’s a hot flash! The cotton masks are more comfortable. Permanent marker stays on them after a washing and won’t smell so toxic afterward.
At any rate, this student wore a really colorful mask one day, and I asked her to do one for me. She uses gel pen, dark colors, then washed it and they turned to pastel. I love the effect, and she was so pleased when I gushed about it. Truth is, it really made me feel special, too, and I’m grateful for that feeling!
These odd times may be hindering our activities and goals, but we can still connect with people. Despite being unable to hug or give high-fives, I believe this is possible.
Please don’t think I’ve got it all figured out. I’m still in training to be the person I want to be.
Have a great weekend, everyone, and thank you for stopping by my corner of the world!
Welcome to my Weekend Coffee Share, hosted by Allison at Eclectic Ali. There is a fuzzy dog at my feet, and my mug contains matcha green tea, a ritual I follow three days a week in my attempt to be ‘awake but not wired’ and to ensure that coffee doesn’t interfere with my sleep later. Enjoy whatever beverage you’d like for our little chat!
Today I want to talk about dreams. Some nights I don’t have them. Other nights, I wake from a dream and think about it, then I start thinking about work or bills or, you name it, my thoughts start racing. It’s handy at 5:30 a.m., when I would soon be waking, but it’s agonizing at 3 a.m. However, I’ve noticed a recurring dream and wondered how it fits in with my life.
This recurring dream subject is the dream where I am lost on the streets of my city, trying to find my way home. In one of them, I am with my son as a child. In a more recent one, I am on my own. In each, my goal is the same, and I am completely unfamiliar with the streets I roam. They seem a little dangerous, or maybe they’re just different to me. In each dream, I entrust myself to strangers I meet on the street to help me get back to the main street and find a central point with which I am familiar. Some of them seem unsavory characters or street people, maybe young ‘thugs,’ but that is just a stereotype. All of these people help me and prove to me I was right to trust them. This certainly applies to my life. I’m learning.
“The problem of a dream like this is that you cannot find your way home. The meaning of the dream lies in the symbolism of home and your inability to find your way to it.
The Symbolism of Home and Your Conscious Attitude
Our home symbolizes our whole situation in life, meaning our entire system of adaptation to life: our relationships, our motivating forces, and in particular, our dominate attitude. By attitude I mean it in the way C.G. Jung defined it:
our habitual point of reference toward life
how we respond to typical life events without even thinking about it” (This hits a nerve, as my fight-or-flight tenses me up so often, automatically)
‘If you feel anxiety in your life (Duh, have you met me?), then now you know where to look for the problem. It has something to do with home and finding your your way into yourself. If you do not feel anxiety, then the unconscious says, “Okay, there’s something wrong here and you don’t see it. You haven’t found your way home yet.”
This dream image of lostness is an archetypal image: lost in the world. It’s part of the Hero’s Journey. Anyone who takes the road less traveled will certainly find themselves in this lost state. It’s the only path to your true self. If this is you, then be happy that you have lost your way, even though it’s scary.”
Finding my way home for me could mean writing; it could mean writing the truth instead of making up fantastical stories, or it could mean just getting back to writing , as I have a sort of writer’s block currently. It could mean striking a balance between my traits I’ve developed to protect myself and those which move me to be fearless at times. I’ve spent years trying new things; perhaps that was just part of the journey, and now I’m figuring out which of these things are for me and which are not. For instance: getting a dog (keep), certain extra volunteer work responsibilities (lose or shuffle), my job (keep for now) :), teaching during COVID (well, I’m still doing it), church volunteer activities (not doing much in that way currently), writing (not doing enough of it), health and exercise (Yes, girl, keep it)!
Here’s the thing, if something does not feel right for me, such as, I feel controlled, feel boxed in, or mistreated, it is not my home. At my heart and soul level I have to lose or be rid of that thing (such as my former marriage). However, being who I am, I normally beat around the bush, negotiate, ask for small changes, and still suffer when I know I am not at home in my heart. Well, I have made such a move recently, and I feel so at peace. I’ve also been talking to people about my perception and my needs, and it feels great. It is the trusting I’ve done.
Part of trusting is trusting yourself. We’re normally ashamed to tell anyone we feel twisted up inside, but when you do so, and they hear and understand, you have also trusted the world and trusted you will handle it if they break that trust. You’ve put your truth out there, and if the world wants to judge you for it, that’s their problem. Remember the lotus? It’s even stronger because it struggled through the mud to bloom and become a beautiful flower. Lotus is a constant returning symbol that I use in my mindset. Let me tell you, as a writer, I am putting contents of my mind out there constantly…and every time I read Bad Boy by Walter Dean Myers where he bears his heart in his life story, I am encouraged to share my stories, and I feel a little more fearless.
The future is bright, my friends. I will find my way home, and it may be an atypical home, but I will feel at peace there and won’t hesitate to tell you about it.
Thank you for stopping by! Weekend Coffee Share is a global once a week event where we share our thoughts, lives, and progress with other bloggers far and wide. I know my share was a little specific; I’m just proud I was focused on something! You will find good people from all walks of life through the coffee shares, teachers, bloggers, writers, poets, community activists and you will be heard. Check out Allison’s site at https://eclecticali.wordpress.com/2020/12/04/weekendcoffeeshare-catching-up-2/#comment-12672
Have a great weekend and even better week next week!