#WeekendCoffeeShare. I’m a Grown up! Meh.

Welcome to my Weekend Coffee Share, hosted by Allison at Eclectic Ali. Yay, it’s Saturday!

I’m writing as I eat breakfast, and my beverage will be iced coffee. It has been a strange week with an extra day off Thursday due to storm Eta, which didn’t trouble my neighborhood much except for gray skies.

It’s sunny out, but I have to do some adulting. My car needs service, and it may need struts, which cost a pretty penny and may change my holiday plans. It makes me want to consider a second job. Yuck.

On that topic of adulting, I joined the #agechallenge on social media. It entails being proud of your age and accomplishments. Suffice it to say here, I meet and I am friends with several people who are young enough to be my child. Hopefully, I’m not old enough to be their grandma, but it will happen. So I am like many others who try to not look their age, try to NOT dress their age. I don’t overdo the makeup, because scrubbing eyeshadow and liner off my eyes gives me more eyebags. I exercise quite faithfully.

There is a silver lining that actually sounds a little ironic. My age challenge statement is this:

**I am ___years old. I would’ve already been dead if this was the Middle Ages. Yet, here I am, with time left to figure it all out.**

Yes, like a teenager, I still try to figure out myself, where I’m headed, what works for me, how I can live at peace with others and with my lot in life. They say, “bloom where you’re planted.” Never a dull moment.

It’s clear (or not) from this image I drew a week ago. Everything I am is who I used to be (so , yeah, the free, tree-climbing girl and the awkward pre-teen and confused teenager), but also includes how far I have come today and everything I possibly can be in the future….all rolled up in one and living within my soul at the same time. The future self just sits in wait for us to be ready and to choose what it will be doing. You are sure to see this image again. (Sorry) 🙂

Very wise one day, I shall be. (But I haven’t quite caught up to Yoda yet) 🙂

I need to exercise more, so I can one day be like the old lady who still wears yoga pants and has arm muscles, with a gray braid down her back….so I better grow it. I do not want to be one of the sitting ladies, staring at pigeons on a park bench. I’d rather be wondering and exploring the park, hopefully with a faithful dog by my side!

Somehow I feel I’ve digressed. I should’ve written a philosophical poem….but, it is what it is.

Have a great week, everyone! Don’t swim around in these thoughts for too long, though I’d love to hear yours. ❤

Weekend Coffee Share, 8/01. It’s Not Over Yet! Summer, 2020

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Welcome to my Weekend Coffee Share, hosted by Allison at Eclectic Ali.  Grab a cup of whatever is your preference! I am having half-caff and Advil this morning.  Miles Davis plays in the background. I’m getting a haircut later and a massage tomorrow.  I don’t know if I can afford it, but I do have a credit card. 🙂  Enjoy the ambience for a little while!

It has been a week full of doctor visits and annual check-ups as well as a shot at the orthopedic surgeon’s office on Tuesday.  Remember, it takes a village. 🙂 The shot was in my shoulder joint (intra-articular shot), and there was a numbing shot first, after which I did not feel any pain nor did I know when the actual steroid shot occurred. The nurse on my other side asked me something and we got onto the topic of returning to school to teach, and that I am learning a few ASL signs for when I need to communicate but have my mask on. We discussed the signs we know and then, it was all over.  They did a good job of distracting me and keeping me calm and cool.  I just lay around the rest of that night and had slight discomfort from it the next day. I was back at physical therapy on Friday. I’ve been working hard on that for 7-8 weeks and it may end soon, but I’ve been told with frozen shoulder I need to keep working on it at home; it may take a year to fully resolve.

I am so done with feeling old and want to do stupid, youthful things again…read that as fun things.  Nonetheless, we celebrated my mom’s 79th birthday Thursday night and I was able to cut my own steak! It was very tender, I will admit, but still a win! A month ago, I couldn’t quite do that.  I am not writing much lately as it’s hard to sit down for very long.  Whether this is a new focus issue or me avoiding sciatica, I can’t say.  I will say that I prefer to get up a lot to take breaks from the computer. It probably is a result of the online teaching I did this Spring.  I did publish a nice poem on WordPress this past week in response to the Ragtag Daily word prompt; it was about our human condition and the current world situation. View it here: By Design, a Poem

20190530_200427 Me and Mom (2019). She has many more years left!

I had lunch with some retired teachers yesterday and then later chatted with a current teacher friend about my health ailments.  I also developed a mood yesterday that hasn’t been helped by lack of sleep, (which just became problematic in this last year and may be due to hot flashes and overthinking, go figure), so I have decided that getting old sucks.
I want to develop a ‘getting older’ attitude that says “I am wise, and I know the little stuff doesn’t matter.  I know my day can be GREAT without brushing my hair or buying the most expensive makeup.”  I want to use this as an excuse to be silly, do zany things, and make questionable stylistic choices. I want to break out of society’s assumptions and chains! Aches or not.  I do sometimes worry that I will overstep my limits and hurt myself, but living in fear is not my new M.O.!

Mind you, I am careful, and I sure don’t travel much in our current situation, which is why I’m pondering and looking for physical activities. I suppose it is boredom, mid-life crisis, or just wanting to actually feel I am LIVING while I can. (It’s not over yet, you know). I want to stay active and be healthy, as staying physically active could also possibly put me on a new path, not the path of pain I have felt stuck in for a good 5 years or so, partly as a result of emotions and life stress.  I polled some Facebook friends, and I’ve gotten suggestions such as: horseback riding, paddle boarding, trying wine in every county in Florida (totally doable), solo travel (not sure about that), and getting a kick-start scooter.  We shall see! I definitely want to hike some more.  Summer is not over yet, and I have a little time left to enjoy the beach.

Florida news: In my state, we now have 465,000 cases of COVID according to cdc.gov.  My county has 20, 816 cases.  School is going to re-open on 8/20. Teachers are starting back for planning/training on 8/12.  We’ll see what happens, I suppose.  I for one will have plenty of masks at the ready and I’ll also wear a face shield.

I hate that I still can get in such a negative mood like I did yesterday, but reading the book Finding Serenity in the Age of Anxiety has been providing nuggets of wisdom for about a month since I started reading it.  This is how I proceed with non-fiction books; I devour a fiction book in a week but take a break now and then to read part of whatever NF or self-help book I am currently on.  Anyway, here’s what inspired me:  “When we fear that ‘something bad is going to happen,’ or when we get upset because ‘everything went wrong today,’ we are also suffering from our own judgments. Refraining from judging and blaming allows us to enter the sacred realm of unconditional acceptance where we are ‘good enough’ and nothing ‘bad’ will ever happen to us.”….”If we truly want to emulate the divine, we will cultivate unconditional acceptance.” So there it is; let’s stop being so hard on ourselves, stop believing the worst, and start seeing the positives in everything! I am working on it.

I hope that you all have a great weekend and find the good in everything you see!  I am going to do my best to put on a youthful attitude.  It just might require a nap this afternoon…

#WeekendCoffeeShare. Full Cup, Please!

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Welcome to my 9/15 entry for the #WeekendCoffeeShare, hosted by Allison at Eclectic Ali.  Please  bring the beverage of your choice, or enjoy a Gevalia Keureg coffee like I am having.  I know I am not the best hostess, but you’re here for the conversation, right?  😉

Thank God it’s Saturday!  It has been a busy week, with full cups of coffee daily!  Monday, I went to the chiropractor after my day of teaching, which is something I’ve been doing weekly for about a month. I went to a chiropractor before, but it has been three years. My only thought is, why did I put this off for so long? I always feel so much better after leaving there, except for my neck, which I have to hold steady and face it straight ahead for a few hours. The neck always seems to need adjustment and is much better the next day. So that is something for my health that I added to my schedule. Tuesday, I went to work in a skirt and sleeveless blouse for a morning meeting, then after work, I stayed and had a small dinner on-site so that I would be ready for Open House that night. This meant I was on-site at school for 12 hours that day, which is a little too much for me.  The rest of the week, I didn’t do much outside of the work schedule, partly because grades were due Friday.  I probably brought a little more paperwork home than usual. Ugh.  My wrists have bothered me for for a little over a week, and I really feel that today. I think it’s arthritis and/or my body is reminding me how old it is getting. Thanks, bod! However, I am making adjustments today so that I can write!

I have decided to bring out my Dragon headset again. This was a gift from my mom about four years ago and it lets me speak my thoughts into the microphone, and then edit later. I haven’t used it in a while, probably because of the misunderstandings it seems to have when I speak. Trust me, they are minor, and I have my hands crossed comfortably while this post is actually getting written. Perhaps Dragon will help me get a lot of writing done without much pain to my wrists. Believe me, I had really put off writing for a while due to the discomfort I had felt starting probably four or five years ago. However, when I look back to that time, I also realize there was probably a little bit of depression going on with me, and that can really paralyze one’s dreams and goals. I just kept thinking, this will only get worse with age; there’s no way I can keep working.  How can I write that book I want to publish?

At any rate, today I am thankful that I pushed past those feelings.  I think I hurt just as much now, but not as much inwardly.  My inner voice tells me, “Crap, it hurts, but I’ve got to get up and do as much as I can today, there are lots of people worse off than I am!”   Whereas, that voice used to say, “Why do I have to hurt so much? I can’t do this, I can’t do that….”  Well, now I’m doing it anyway.  Mind over matter.  I have heard that as we get older, we get more stubborn, and I think pain is all relative.  🙂  However, I realize I do seem to get cranky more towards others, or maybe I have less patience due to chemical/hormonal changes.  Well, it’s natural, and I do try to think before speaking.  Don’t get me wrong, I think I am pretty patient with my middle-schoolers; after all, they are middle-schoolers!

So, I didn’t get much writing done this week, but I got a student newsletter finalized for my Journalism class!  I am so proud of them and their work.  I got some beta reader notes for my short prequel story starring Milt and Tabitha from Detours in Time, so I hope to be working on that in just a few minutes.  I am working to make this statement come true:  “If you dream it, you can do it.”  I have so many writing ideas for the next few years!

On that note, I am off to editing land.  I hope you all have a great weekend and a great week, and thanks for stopping by!  Visit other Weekend Coffee Shares from the blogging community at Eclectic Ali.  Namaste and God bless!

A Word for my Intentions. #amwriting #newyear

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I was reading a social media post by a young entrepreneur on New Year’s resolutions.  Instead of making resolutions, she is focusing on a key word in her New Year as she did at the start of last year.  Her results sounded amazing.

There is so much I want to do and so much I have to do to be a positive source and a strength for my family and my students.  It wears me down at times.  Sometimes I forget to tap into a source of strength for myself.  Faith is great, but I still get tired.  What do I do with my faith?  I pray that bad things don’t happen to the ones I love.  Perhaps I should be praying more often in thanks for the good that has happened, forgetting the bad and the scary road that events can take as they have in the past.  Moving forward from the past is important.

At any rate, I know the power of positive thinking.  I know that I need yoga, God and faith, my family, friends, relaxation, and healthy food.  Yet, I still could improve my attitude.  Words affect one’s attitude.  I often wake up in the morning, thinking, “Crap.  I have to get up.”  “Crap.  I can’t lay on my back anymore.” That’s a pretty crass word to use in greeting my day.  So I plan to stop making that my first word in reaction to a new day.

My key word for 2018 is going to be “Energy.”  There is so much I want to do, and I will not give up.  I plan to continue doing what I can to help others.  I will continue writing and hopefully improve my writing, publishing, and networking skills as an author.  But I  still plan to be an inspiring educator (even more than I have been), a source of strength for my son and mother, as well as a woman who is faithful to God and her own principles.  I will also know when I need to relax and give that time to myself.  These are my goals.  Energy is the word that will manifest that attitude.  I don’t have to bounce off the walls or be a gymnast.  I am talking about mental, intellectual, and psychological energy.  I will not say ‘Yes’ to everything that comes across my plate, but I will be accepting of new experiences.   (By the way, there was one year when I came close to saying yes to everything.  I don’t regret it; it was a great learning experience, but I see that it couldn’t go on forever…). I will channel my energy into achieving the results I want from life.

What’s the best that could happen?  This is what I need to focus on.  The best outcomes will be that I influence countless students to love reading and writing, that I let them leave me as more developed humans than they were before knowing me, that I become a source of strength and giving to others rather than a collector or hoarder of objects, money, or knowledge, and that I become a writer who is never out of ideas and never too beaten down to improve my craft, never too hopeless too continue or too broke to take a break from working and do what I really, truly love.  All of this is in addition to having time for my family and loved ones, enjoying time and sharing of myself with my boyfriend, friends, etc.  In doing these things, I want to feel I have some measure of control over what I am doing in my life.  I will not be a slave to money.  Or fame, or any other contest whereby I’m judged or measured up by the numbers.  This is the best that could happen.  I will not even voice the worst.  Why?  Because I am not worried about it.  It does not exist unless my thoughts can breathe life into it.  Having wasted parts of my life on worry, I see the results it can have.  I’m not going to worry about it.

This goes back to a favored quote by Nikki Giovanni,  writer, poet, activist, and educator.  This quote spurred me on when I was a 20-year-old college student, questioning my place in the world and where my priorities lay.

 “There is always something to do. There are hungry people to feed, naked people to clothe, sick people to comfort and make well. And while I don’t expect you to save the world I do think it’s not asking too much for you to love those with whom you sleep, share the happiness of those whom you call friend, engage those among you who are visionary and remove from your life those who offer you depression, despair and disrespect.” – Nikki Giovanni

If you’d like to read more about my thought process at age 20 (I sure needed a lot of work) and how she inspired me just by writing the words I needed, please see my blog entry at Nikki Giovanni, You Inspire Me! 

This year, instead of worrying on the worst that could happen, I will live a life of purpose and spend my time and my words on voicing the things I wish to come about.  All of this will be centered around the key word:  Energy.

I’ll let you know after this year how it works!  If you were to choose a key word for this year’s intentions, what would that word be?