Archives for category: Spring

It’s evening, and I never get tired of being awash in evening light. The perspective from this 17th floor hotel room is vast and lovely. A distant highway adds sparkle as traffic follows the road in the deepening twilight. I look out toward the horizon picking out various landmarks I had spotted in daylight hours. There is a far off ferris wheel that lights at night. Tonight it is blue. The sky is clear tonight. At least over here. Out on that horizon, more thunderheads, but no lightning (yet).

Florida from the 17th floor.

I wore myself out at the conference today. That wasn’t my plan. Reality has its own, and consequences of physical limitations are for sure part of that experience. The convention center is quite huge. The distances from one end of the conference to the other are… vast. LOL In the late afternoon, I laid down “for 10 minutes”, planning to join other attendees at dinner a bit later. I woke a bit more than 3 hours later, a little groggy, very thirsty, and feeling somewhat rested and in quite a lot less pain. I’m okay with all of those things. Although I am quite outgoing based on my “personal presentation” in the workplace, or out and about in the world, the truth is I’m often cringing at the “unwanted contact” with other beings and other minds. Baggage? Oh, surely, and I’m even okay with that. I live decently well these days, and there is no shame in being content with a great many solitary experiences. I have grown quite fond of the woman in the mirror, and she’s excellent “company” given a few moments to myself to enjoy the experience of self.

My last trade conference before this one was some years ago. My experience was intense, unpleasant in spots, overly busy, distracting, unsettled, and my return home was… problematic. I over-reacted to the excitement and relief of being home, and my emotionality brought me in conflict with my partners-at-the-time. The meltdown was… significant, and terribly unpleasant. I feel hopeful that I’m past all that, and that this trip will end with the sort of comfortably familiar return home that I have whenever I return from routine business travel.

…The only things I find unpleasant about this particular adventure are the stifling humidity (Florida, need I say more?) and the astonishing size of the convention space, so vast that just getting registered yesterday resulted in 16k total steps walked from when I reached the airport, until I dropped into bed, exhausted. LOL It’s probably excellent for my overall fitness… but damn it’s hard on my ankle, and by the end of each day, my feet hurt like crazy. That’s how I ended up napping; I really just wanted to put my feet up awhile so they wouldn’t hurt, and I could go/do just a bit more. lol My body knew better; I needed that rest.

I am missing my Traveling Partner. Missing “home”. Missing my garden, and the plump gray cat that stalks blue jays from the fence-top outside my studio window while I am working. I miss being wrapped in contentment and love. I miss my own cooking. I am grateful to have the opportunity to travel a bit; it provides useful perspective on home life, and gives me a chance to fully appreciate my life. I’m not yearning and feeling lost, just missing things about my life that I truly love. I’m eager to get back.

I write a paragraph reflecting on practical/personal details of travel, generally. I delete it. I’m rambling. I’m connecting with my home experience by writing while I think about it. Inefficient. I think I’ll shift gears and message my partner, and chat awhile. 🙂 No phone call? Nah. Being on the phone is physically uncomfortable – it makes my tinnitus worse, and also tends to find me holding my left arm in a position that makes the pain of my neck injury worse. I smile to myself just thinking about my partner.

Soon enough, more sleep. Soon enough, I’ll begin again.

Good flight, so far. Lots of storms. Lightening. Beautiful. I entertain myself shooting video clips of lightening in the distance as it illuminates the clouds. The sky is “already ” beginning to show signs of the coming dawn. My brain feels confused by that; the clock says 01:14. Soon we’ll land, and upon reconnecting, it’ll be 3 hours “into the future”.

I haven’t slept. Although I often doze on long flights, it’s rare that I actually sleep deeply or restfully. I didn’t expect to. I dozed a couple times. 20-30 minute catnaps, nothing more. I will nap in the hotel, after check-in.

… time passes…

It’s evening, now. Almost 18:00. Florida “has thick air” – dense, still, humid. There has been a hint of coming storms in the air here, all day. The storms over the midwest seem to have followed me here. lol I turn off the A/C in the room. Shut off the lights as night falls. I shoot a few videos. Reliably the most “dramatic” and eye-catching lightening immediately precedes turning on the video, or quickly follows turning it off. LOL Timing matters.

I sit quietly, entertained by “nature’s lightshow”. The heaviest of the drenching rain has moved on, but the lightening persists. There was a balcony light on for a while. It’s off now. Timers? My footage would have been much better without that fucking balcony light. I stop writing for a few minutes and just watch, listen, and breathe. My cell phone is on the charger; no video right now. LOL Timing matters.

City lights in the distance seem to sparkle. Cars move along roadways. It all seems so… “fancy”. I feel lucky to see it; there are very few thunderstorms where I live.

I was so wiped out from traveling that once I checked into the hotel, and got sorted out for where things are located (like the convention I’m actually here for), I crashed hard and napped for a couple hours. Got up. Showered. Went and checked-in to the conference itself. Had another nap. Roused myself and attended the evening conference “mixer” – just a meet-n-greet of various professionals attending, and the folks who are hosting the whole thing. It was pleasant enough, I supposed. Not so much my thing, personally, but I was tickled to run into a couple folks I know from elsewhere: a former colleague, folks I’ve met previously through vendor partnerships when I was employed other places. Everyone seemed to have a good time. Once it was clear the socializing was beginning to turn into “partying”, I made a gracious exit and returned to my room, delicious but unfinished Mai Tai still in my hand. Those are fucking strong. I have one last sip as I enter my room, and put the rest in the mini fridge. (I probably won’t finish it; that’s a lot of alcohol for me, and I rarely drink.) Tasty. Too much. Like travel and conferences. LOL

The thunder rolls on. An hour ago I was unbelievably sleepy again… now, less so. I’m captivated by the lightening, and spellbound by the thunder. I’m missing my Traveling Partner. We chatted awhile, a bit ago, before the thunderstorm started. Soon, sleep, but for now, I’m just sitting here with a glass of water, enjoying this thunderstorm. 😀 …This too shall pass. Storms do. Impermanence demonstrated. I sit with that metaphor, sipping my water.

Soon enough, it’ll be a new day, and time to begin again.

…This is me, seated by a big window at my boarding gate in the terminal. My flight will board on time; it’s already parked at the gate, empty of passengers, and being stocked up for this journey. It’s been a long while since I have flown. 2016? I think so…

I’m generally not bad at waiting around, most particularly if the environment is relatively calm and quiet, more or less. I wasn’t always. Used to be that a long wait, especially if it were unexpected, or likely to throw off carefully made plans, would not just wreck my mood, it would even (and quickly) degrade my mental health. These days I am as likely as not to actually embrace waiting- it’s good “me time” snatched from busy circumstances, allowing me to catch up with my thoughts and reflect. Tonight is like that.

What did it take to make such a profound transformation? A lot of practice. Meditation. Breathing. Non-attachment. Letting small shit go. Self-reminders that it isn’t all about me.

Soon enough a new journey resumes. Soon enough I will begin again. For now, I wait.

…It’ll be another. 🙂

In this case, it’s a lovely sunny Spring morning, a Friday. I took the day off because I’ll be on a plane heading to a work conference late tomorrow evening, sleeping thousands of feet overhead as I wing my way to the conference location. I’m not exactly excited about it… I’m not exactly not excited about it. I spent so many years as the partner staying behind, staying home, venturing out seldom, that this still has some novelty and interest – especially after two years of pandemic life. But, whether I am excited or not, I definitely do want and need time to chill, to plan into it, to prepare with care – because when I give up that time and don’t do those things, my experience feels frenetic, chaotic, and stressful. Besides all that, a Saturday departure makes a short weekend with my Traveling Partner (who is the more likely of the two of us to be staying at home, these days). I didn’t want to undermine those limited precious minutes we share, so taking the day off results in something more or less like a normal weekend, at least in duration.

I’m sipping my coffee contentedly. Just finished off the payday stuff – that’s a pretty low stress endeavor these days, and I feel that. The lack of stress, I mean. It’s pretty splendid that the mere mention of a payday, or a bill, or indebtedness, or budgeting doesn’t send me into a massive anxiety attack of some kind, or trigger my PTSD. A lifetime ago, being even a penny off on the painful process of balancing a checkbook with my first husband would almost guarantee I’d have terrible dark painful new bruises afterward. Literal violence, over pennies. What a lot of horrible bullshit. I can look back now and see that I should have walked away much sooner, but it wasn’t so obvious at the time. Understanding now that I was also viewing life through the lens of a fairly serious brain injury that was not actually rehabilitated (and that I was not, at the time, aware of), I am much more compassionate with that younger version of me.

Have you ever thought about that? How easy it actually could be to cut your younger self some fucking slack? Bad decisions are pretty commonplace when we’re young; we have limited life experience, and we’re the sort of creatures that commonly learn best through our mistakes. So… yeah. Every one of us has fucked something up, probably pretty badly. The world is going to make a point of ensuring we get a proper reckoning, more often than not. We could at least be there for ourselves, after the fact, right? We could bring our wiser perspective to our recollection of events, be kind to that younger self who just didn’t have all the tools or knowledge to do things much differently, and be just a bit more nurturing of ourselves on that look back – couldn’t we? And why not? The events of the past are past. Treat yourself more gently now and then. It’s okay to be your own best friend.

I’m not saying ignore warning signs that you need real help – definitely seek out and get the help you need. Think your mind “doesn’t work right”? Get therapy. Just like you would if you had a broken bone, or a terrible case of flu – get qualified help. Get treatment. Embrace change. Don’t like who you are? Make other choices. Change your thinking. Change your practices. Walk away from a situation that you are not thriving in. Jobs? There are plenty. Find one that you enjoy and doesn’t entirely drain away your joy in life! Relationships? Yeah, I know, we get attached, we feel that connection, we hope… But a bad situation is a bad situation. You could walk away. Maybe you should? Don’t like where you live? Move! Okay, resources are limited, so maybe that feels out of reach – but setting a goal is within reach. Making a plan is within reach. Exploring options is within reach. Steps. Incremental change over time adds up.

Anyway. It’s a lovely day, in spite of this being a world filled with violence and chaos, and threats to our freedoms, and shitty entitled ass-clowns seemingly just every-fucking-where… it’s okay to choose joy, and to live life. Savor what feels good. Seek to change what isn’t working so well. It’s okay to look back on yourself with kindness, and with respect for what you have endured so far, and how far you’ve come to get where you are now.

…It’s okay to begin again. 😀

Here it is, your day! I mean, if you are a mother, this is it. A day on the calendar for you. I hope it is delightful!

Today is potentially fairly grim and meaningless, perhaps, if you did not choose motherhood. Just saying; that may unfortunately become much more common. And although women who do choose (even embrace) motherhood may not understand this, for those that do not choose motherhood, the idea of being forced to endure it is not a “small detail”, and no, their feelings on that may never change, even if they find themselves in the position of having to raise a child (or children).

I chose to be childless, and I am grateful to have come of age at a time when I could make that choice.

Anyway – if you did choose motherhood, here’s to you, and my best wishes that your child grows to become someone you can be proud of, and a value to community and society, and that you thrive in your role as Mother. It’s a worthy endeavor to commit to motherhood, for those that choose it. You have my respect.

Happy Mother’s Day.