Friday, October 25, 2013

You're Not Helping

I recently saw a popup ad for a workshop called "From Burnout to Brilliant!" and I need to vent a bit.

If you write this or sell this, you are no healer and belong in the "You're not helping" file. As a recovering burnout, I can speak with some authority, burnouts need rest not more pressure to be "brilliant". How do you think they burned out in the first place, genius?!

While I'm on this theme, here are some other words that are off-limits when working with people who are burnt out:

  • Achieve
  • Accomplish
  • Goals
  • Make it happen
  • Any derivation of "you can"
  • And any other achieve-y kind of word that comes out of the mouth of a motivational speaker
It's the achieving, the accomplishing, the goals (which are just a "motivational" way of saying "duties"), the making it happen, and the can-doing that turn up the heat until you burn out.

Here are the words you should use if you want to remove yourself from the "You're not helping" file when working with people who have burnt out:
  • Rest
  • Release
  • Acceptance
  • Limits
  • Boundaries
  • Delegating
Honest to God! Does this woman look sane?

Monday, October 21, 2013

This Medical Bill is Making Me Ill

So, I just wrote out a check for $105 to a medical center here in town. I went there for two visits back in March ... that's right ... March. To be fair, I received the first bill in September - however, that is a long time between bill and service.

When the bill came in September, I was so annoyed that I just couldn't bring myself to pay it. We've got to come up with a word for what that is.

Reason for late-pay: I had the money, I was just too disgusted to part with it.
Being a word person, I should be able to come up with something; I'm just a little too peeved for that right now. If you think of anything, please feel free to comment.

The $105 that I owe is not what gets me so peeved ... alright, that's a lie; there's a lot I could buy with $105 - like that patio furniture I've been meaning to buy since moving to Florida. Really, it's the overall total of $1,698.00.
Of which, my insurance paid $1,408.00.
You'd think I had surgery ... or something removed. I want something that used to be inside me floating in a jar of formaldehyde for that money.

So, what was it?

Two visits with a rehab specialist. That's right. Not a doctor or a nurse or even a nurse practitioner. A rehab specialist.

I have experienced something called edema, which is swelling, usually in the legs and ankles. I decided to finally go see what traditional medicine could do for it ... other than "elevate your legs."

I saw two rehab specialists who measured my legs for those compression bandages I would never wear and told them I would never wear. And a massage that helps drain fluid from the lymphatic system. I have had great results with regular massages, so I thought, "Why not get the massage designed to treat this condition?"

It must be so much better than a traditional massage by someone who fell ass-backwards into massage school and just rubs you around. Right?


Neither treatment did anything and I cannot believe that those two visits were billed at $1,698.00. People buy cars for that amount of money. Not great cars, but cars! An actual vehicular conveyance that is legal to drive could be purchased for the amount of money charged me for two rehab people who didn't even look me in the eye and seemed to have no idea what they were doing.

As I finished writing my check, I inevitably came to the Memo line. You know the line when you're supposed to write in what the check paid for. All I could think to write was, "Beats the shit out of me!" or "Damned if I know."

Something is really, really wrong with our healthcare system and it's not Obamacare. After the Republicans in Congress brought our country to the brink of default over the ACA - which is nothing more than a tax credit that enables the uninsured to buy health insurance at a cheaper rate - I can't help but look at this bill and recognize what a mess we're in. If it's this hard to even try to fix the system ... even a small part of the system ... God help us if we ever try to address the actual problem of medical billing.

The ACA doesn't even begin to address the problem of outrageous medical billing so thoroughly and astoundingly documented by Steven Brill in Time magazine back in May. His interviews on The Daily Show just skim the surface, but are still excellent.

In closing, I would really like that $1,698.00 back, but I would settle for the $105. I could buy a couple massages for that money.

Thursday, October 17, 2013

A Food Nightmare

I was just invited to a potluck at a yoga center. Can you imagine an event involving food more fraught with stress? All the special diets -  vegan, all the various version of vegetarianism (now that's the way to alliterate!), gluten-free, GMO free, and on and on - some masquerading as eating disorders and some ... with a lot more discipline than me.

Anyway, even thinking of what I would bring fills me with so much fear and anxiety that I couldn't even imagine going. And - even if I somehow managed to figure out what to bring - I'd be too nervous to eat. All that judgement and "observing."

Every time I lifted my hand to my mouth, I'd just brace myself for the description of what is in my mouth. And, while I can't talk due to chewing, I'll hear a litany of either what I'm eating or shouldn't eat and how it would regulate or de-regulate or otherwise affect someone's bowel movements...just as I'm about to swallow.

Christ! I'd covertly slip something into my bra and run into the bathroom to eat it. Who am I kidding? I'm such a liar. I would eat a burrito in my car - in another parking lot - before walking in

Friday, October 4, 2013


Look at these pictures of a study this young student did trying to grow a plant with microwaved vs non-microwaved water:
"The human body cannot metabolize [break down] the unknown by-products created in microwaved food."
This sure makes me feel better about the "coffee incident" which, as you may know, was brought on by my refusal to use a microwave.

Yep, I might be a high-functioning spaz, but sometimes I get it right.

I mean look at Day 9:

Now, in all fairness, it looks like a plant after nine days in my care ... even with purified water. However, the point about microwaves still stands.

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

But-Less Gratitude

I'm going to be quick ... I know I tend to get long. I always intend to be quick and four pages later ... alright, I'll just stop now.

Last Saturday was World Gratitude Day. Yes, I know it's one of those made-up, Hallmark holidays, but gratitude is so very important for shifting your vibration towards the positive that it's worth pausing for.

While I was at an event, the speaker asked us to pause and think of things we were grateful for. This is when I had the epiphany I am passing on to you:
Think of things that you are actually grateful for.
I know, I'm a genius right?

Seriously, though, every time people do this in a group, people always say their family, their kids, their jobs. And it's always in that tone. That Hermione gets a gold star tone. That "Teacher, you forgot to give us homework." tone.

You'd think we were all running for student council.

Fortunately, the woman leading the workshop asked us to think of things we were grateful for in our heads and not out loud. I am happy to say that I rattled off a list of things so quickly that I was amazed and happy and wanted to keep going.

The thing was, they were things I really was grateful for:
  • the two matching, crystal lamps that brighten up my office
  • the new makeup kit from QVC that turned out to be so awesome
  • the soft, wet, cool breeze of Atlantic Coast Florida early in the morning.  
The problem with saying your family et al is that there's always a but.
  • You're grateful for your family, buuuuutttt they drive you crazy.
  • You're grateful for your job, buuuuutttt they drive you crazy.
  • You're grateful for your friends, buuuuutttt they drive you crazy. (Less than family, buuuuutttt you get my point)
When there's a big buuuuutttt in the thing you're grateful for, practicing gratitude is
  • Not going to shift your energy
  • Not going to make you feel better
  • Not going to bring you all the benefits you keep reading about practicing gratitude ... and that's just going to make you feel worse.
When you make a list of thing you're really grateful for, go Kosher--no butts!

Saying your grateful for your family, your friends, or your job is usually a bad idea if there are big butts in there. 
  • Pretty, crystal lamps (where I got a great deal) - no buts!
  • Awesome new makeup - no buts!
  • Beautiful breeze - no buts!
It doesn't matter how stupid, or silly, or unelectable to the student council your gratitude list makes you. No one has to see it. No one has to know.

The important thing is that you really feel the gratitude for whatever it is with no buts. Family relationships and jobs are too complicated and our feelings are too mixed about them to shift your energy quickly - even if you really are grateful deep down. In fact, when I talk about my day job, "I'm grateful to have it." is the first thing I say ... because I know I'm about to complain.

Now, soft-serve frozen yogurt in white chocolate mousse? All gratitude, no complaining, no buts.

Woohoo, the Water Bill is Here


Why woohoo?

Because I was right and I get to sit in my smugness ...  until my next screw up. And, after the coffee incident, I need as much self-righteous smugness as I can get.

From the day I moved into this apartment, I knew that something was wrong with the toilet; it shouldn't run that often. And I shouldn't be paying $70/month for water on a 600 square foot apartment. Even if holy water blessed by Jesus himself is coming out of my tap, that's too much money.

When I first moved in, I got the repair guy to try something at the beginning and then he said something I can't remember because it involved household repairs and tools. Whatever it was, it boiled down to "let's see how it goes."

Well, it goed and goed and goed. Every 25 minutes, I would hear it come on and shut off. I described this phenomenon  to every one so many times and no one seemed to get it. Sometimes, though, you've just got to let it go and focus on other disasters ... like getting laid off.

Getting laid off inspired me to bring the water bill up again. $70/month is a lot of money when you're living on unemployment checks from out of state. It's a lot of money when I got a job. Point is, it's a lot of money.

I got the same runaround/lack of follow up/ball of confusion then and dropped it so that I could focus full-time on just what the hell I was going to do with no job. Just kidding! Incessant worry was more of a part-time gig. After all, a girl's gotta sleep.

Every month, when that bill came in, I would get so mad. However, anger does not create solutions; it only manifests more anger. I am far enough along on my spiritual path to know that.

The further I go down my path, the more I know what works and doesn't work for me. I can rage all I want in my mind and to my friends (and hey, there's this blog thing I keep hearing about...), but when I vent that rage in situations like this, it never solves the problem and I just feel double-crappy: once for having lost it and twice for still having the problem!

Rather than raging, I would stare at that $70 bill each month and think,
"There has got to be a solution to this. Angels help me out here." 
Actually, I think it went from,
"WTF??!! Why don't these people listen to me?!" 
to asking Source in a progressively nicer voice with each passing month. From a roar to a sigh to a quiet determination to getting this resolved.

As guided, I started keeping the bills in a stack on top of my fridge. (Well, the fridge part was me, but you know what I'm saying.)

Finally, when the same $70 bill arrived for a month where I had been out of town three out of four weeks, I made another call. And another call. And another call. And a visit to the HOA wherein I discovered that they didn't even know I was living here. Sorting that out was fun. I also received an education on "flapper" technology from the maintenance man ... which is apparently something that flaps ... in your toilet. I tried not to think about it too much.

At this point, I was asking for help from Spirit, Angels, and any one else who would help me. I was very calm when making calls and visits and kept saying,
Which is all I say when I'm afraid I'll go negative. Honestly, when you've got this much sarcasm inside, going negative is easy ... and wordy. So, one word. They know what to do ... or should by now.

So, imagine my surprise, when sitting in my apartment one day, months after the last attempt to fix this, I get a call from the apartment manager about the water bill. Two days later, the fix-it guy shows up with a whole bag of stuff. I do my best to explain flapper technology to which he replied,
"Yeah, that's what I said before..."
Fist of death! Fist. of. death!

No, when you hear the word "flapper" in regards to a toilet, you remember it. No one ever said anything about a flapper...until I did.

Exhale. Slooooowly....

In any case, he fixed it, the leak, stopped, and I just got a water bill for $14 less than the last one. This water bill includes two weeks before the fix and two weeks after.

Sometimes, you just need to let your angels take care of it. The solution might not come on your time, but it will come and it will be so much easier than if you had pushed it.

I hope I'm learning to turn things over faster. The more I do, the faster whatever it is gets resolved. This whole process took 10 months, but it's done.

 I can't wait to get my bill next month.

Sunday, September 22, 2013

Burner Busted

Spiritual guidance - you just never know how it's going to help you. And today it saved me from even more unforeseen humiliation regarding "the coffee incident" blogged about previously.

Even a friend had to say to me on the phone yesterday, why didn't you just put it in the microwave?


I don't do microwaves, OK? They freak me out and always have. Even when I was a kid and watching something cook in a microwave, all I could think is, "That's just wrong!"

I have no explanation for this other than my instinctual aversion to microwaves and microwaves food. Worst of all is microwaved water for coffee and tea and anything else. Anytime I go to someone's house and they ask me if I want tea and then put the cup in the microwave, I shudder, and then pretend to drink the tea, thinking, "Angel, cancel, clear, delete ... or something. I don't want to glow all the way home."

Is boiling water that hard? Well, I guess after this and this, it can be ... for me. And, I hope this explains why it would occur to me to put cold coffee in a microwave to heat it up. My microwave is full of saran wrap, tinfoil, sandwich bags, and other kitchen things.

Anyway, the continued fallout of the coffee incident is that there is no saving this burner pan:

And that's where divine guidance comes in. Months ago, I kept feeling like I should join Amazon Prime. At the time, I was unemployed and thought that that guidance couldn't possibly be right.

Well, I followed it, and boy! has it saved my ass more times than I have the time to explain here. Most recently, with the case of the over-burnt burner pictured above. Every time, I turn it on, I smell burning Lavazza and this will not stand.

Amazon Prime to the rescue:

Yeah ... that's right!

Amazon isn't just for ordering books you're too embarrassed to check out at the store - cough! Shades of Grey cough! cough! Now, it's for items you would too embarrassed to explain needing to a Home Depot employee.

Given my penchant for telling the truth and over-explaining, I would panic in the moment and just tell the truth ... only to fact that, "who the hell are you?" look I have seen so often in retail settings.

Lastly, through Amazon Prime, I bought a kick-ass convection oven that defrosts and toasts my bagels in three minutes. Take that microwaves!

And, I actually just thought, "Hey, I could put my coffee mug in there." Sigh! Some people never learn...

Friday, September 20, 2013

A Tale of Two Mugs

In case any of you thought I was making up the story in my last post about my favorite coffee mug exploding because I left in on the burner to heat up. Here it is:

The bottom popped off and the coffee went everywhere. All in all, it was a pretty clean break; no shards anywhere. To the right is the burner that still has caked Lavazza in the bottom of the pan. I have no idea how to replace that damn thing. 

This morning, I bought my new favorite mug. Pretty fitting, don't you think? 

It's the same basic shape as the old one, 

so, I foresee a long and happy life together.

And, of course, there's this:

What can I say? I still have some of that Lavazza left.

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Practical Solutions for (Somewhat) Spiritual Bloopers

Or, how to redeem a really stupid, fancy coffee purchase at a "high vibrating" store. By now, you have probably read this hilarious article about Whole Foods by Kelly MacLean over at the Huffington Post. True dat, Kelly.

Reading that article and a kitchen incident involving my coffee this morning that I would rather not go into inspired me to share this useful information.

Alright, alright, I put my coffee mug on the front burner to warm it up, I stepped away, and it exploded. I had left the burner on high, because I heard the ping on Lync from my work laptop and knew it was my boss. So there.

Also, funny story, I'm out of paper towels.

These are the joys of working from home. You run out of paper towels (and toilet paper) on a regular basis and always have that moment of confusion as to why. "I'm at work. The paper towels never run out at work." And then you remember, that you're also at home and you have to buy the paper towels. Just like when you were a kid and realized that an endless supply of clean clothes don't just spring forth from mom's arms; there's actually a process.

Anyway, watching the burnt coffee ooze all over the stove and floor with no practical way to wipe it up made me think about the coffee itself. It was like a zen meditation except it brought to the memory of buying that coffee instead of my inner Buddha or whatever.

Much like Ms. MacLean, we all get seduced by fancy stores like Whole Foods or Some Guys Gourmet Repast places and we buy things we can't eat or use that were really expensive. Hence, the coffee now oozing down my kitchen cabinet.

At one Jim Bob's Fancy Gourmet Crap store or another, I purchased the fancy coffee. The coffee in a tin! Imported! A favorite of some European country! Whose flag waves at me from the front of the tin! Of course, I should buy it. So I can be fancy and European and have the bestest, most gourmet-ist in life.

Those fancy coffees were the illy and the Lavazza. As opposed to the illy and the Odyssey. Well, let me tell you, the Odyssey of the illy is drinking it. It will take you all around the world and then back home ... and straight to the bathroom.

Lavazza is much, much worse than illy (much worse!), but they are both pretty brutal. Maybe it's their country of origin (Italy) but both of these coffees taste like the metal shavings and rust bits that come out of your radiator when it's flushed. And the experience of drinking it is like having your ... ahem ... radiator flushed. (Seriously, it's liquid Colon Blow.)



It was $15 a pop! That is a LOT of expensive coffee you can't drink. Damn you fancy stores for making me think that fancy coffee makes me fancy!

So, what do you do when you find yourself in possession of fancy, yet undrinkable, very expensive coffee? Mix it with good coffee.

Here's a tip for your Whole Foods (or Chef Blah Blah Blah's Rustic Kitchen) recovery:
  1. Go to the grocery story and buy Dunkin Donuts coffee (Literally, the best coffee in the world ... and I am using "literally" correctly. Look it up.) for $7 or $8.
  2. Dump a significant portion of the fancy coffee in the garbage. The portion should be proportional to how painful it was to drink.
  3. Dump a significant portion of the Dunkin Donuts coffee into remaining metal shavings - oops! - I mean coffee in the tin and shake.
This saved the illy ($15!) but the Lavazza might just be irredeemable. 

So there you have it: a practical solution to the stupidity brought on by the weakness and intimidation of expensive, gourmet stores. And the aftermath of those, "I deserve the best" thoughts. 

I hope we've all learned something:
  1. Never put your coffee mug on a burner.... unless you're going to watch it. (Y'all know I'm gonna to this again, so I had to put a disclaimer in there.)
  2. Never buy or drink Italian coffee - especially Lavazza. Unless you need to torture information out of a suspect.
  3. Always, always buy more paper towels than you think you need. (And more toilet paper, especially if you're gonna drink the Lavazza.)

(No, I mean it, really. Why else would I be offering such helpful tips?! At my own expense?)

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

How to Stay Alive...And Not

When I first started my blog, it represented a commitment to myself to be more creative. The problem is that my life is ... sucking the life out of me.

I am so tired and worn out lately that there's just nothing funny in the tank.

I have outlined several ideas and sometimes think of funny things, but when I get to it, I'm so spent that ... it's just not funny at all. I'm afraid to work on my great stories because they'll come out dry as a desert.

It's just life sometimes.

I work in writing for a living. Nothing fun or creative. I write for information technology or "IT" if you are in the biz. "IT" technically stands for "information technology," but more often than not it really means "idiot train." So, I write for the idiot train and I am desperately trying not to let it suck all the words out of me.

I went to write for the idiot train years ago precisely because it wasn't creative. Actually, technically, I boarded the idiot train because
  1. People kept telling me I was a good writer. In fact, I remember reading all the recommendation letters from college and they all said "great writing skills" or "good writer," which mystified me ... and still does.
  2. I desperately wanted out of the secretarial pool. If ever there was a person who shouldn't be answering phones and fighting with the copier, it's me.
  3. A test told me to. 
As unbelievable as it sounds, a test told me to be a technical writer. In my mid-20s, in a new city, barely paying my bills, and wondering just what the heck I was ever going to do with a Philosophy degree, I signed up for a class about what to do with the rest of your life. 

For the life of me, I cannot remember the name of the course or where I found out about it, but I remember that it was in this old building at Queens College. Six weeks of personality tests, skills tests, aptitude test, and a bunch of other crap that I can't remember, and BAM! career options. 

At the end, the proctor handed us a sheet with the top three careers that matched all our test scores. Mine were:
  1. Translator
  2. Technical Writer
  3. Model
Now, #3 kind of told me how much time and money I had just wasted in that stupid course because, last time I checked, it's not personality that makes someone a model. Somehow the whole Inner Beauty magazine concept never took off. Imagine that. Truth be told, the the fact that "model" is even in the mix of possible careers makes the whole enterprise null and void, but what the hell else was I gonna do? That money and time was spent and I didn't have any other options at the time. 

As for #1, French was my best subject in school, but that had long since faded from memory. So #2 it was. Only. What the hell was it?!

When I discovered that technical writing was writing instructions for technology, I thought it was the best shot I had at anything. All those "good writer" comments flashed before my eyes and I thought tech writing and me might just be a good match after all. 

Also, and here's where it gets ironic ... at least I hope here's where it gets ironic. Ever since the 90s, I'm never sure what's ironic or not. Now, THAT'S ironic ... I think. But, as I said, I have no idea.

In any case, the possibly ironic part is that I have never considered myself a good writer, not creatively anyway. I don't have fictional characters speaking to me and I have no dreams about writing the great American novel. I don't even like great American novels that much. I ran from English class in favor or Philosophy because...well, that is a whole other blog. 

The point is, I have never been a writer in that arty, "I just need time to let my art flow and write" sense. Ironically(?), I've always been surrounded by writers who are always talking about their writing projects -  short stories, plays, books, screenplays - but never me. 

I've been to writing groups or, should I say, I've been dragged to writing groups by the aforementioned writers in my life and ... just wondered what the hell I was doing there. I felt like such a fraud because we were all supposed to be connecting through writing and I ... had ... no writing. And, even more importantly, no impulse to write. Nothing to say that I thought anyone wanted to hear.

Back to the test results, all those "good writing" comments were still spinning around my head like a Cuisinart someone left on low when along came the test results and technical writing with them. It seemed like a great way to use a skill I apparently had but without the pressure of being creative, which, as I said, I have never been. Also, I might not be creative but I had to stop doing time answering phones. 
"Hello, this is XYZ company, Jessica speaking. Kill me now, please."
So, it's been a lot of years and a lot of writing since (note that my last post was about a writing injury) and it's mostly been good. The idiot train is as idiotic as ever and not slowing down any time soon, but I think it was a good choice overall. 

So along comes this blog. My first shot at being creative, only my day job - the one I though would be perfect because I could write without the pressure of being creative - is stealing all my words! I show up to blog - more often than there are blogs to show for it - and I just don't have much in the tank. 

Is this ironic? It seem like something Alanis Morisette could sing. Why not? Her lyrics never rhyme anyway... or do they? I can never tell. 

Speaking of a musician, there is a really good reason that creative people often work as waiters and ... other basic labor while trying to "make it." Those jobs take your time but not your mind and that's really important when being creative, I have just discovered. 

What a pickle I've gotten myself into, huh?

I'll keep keeping the faith and trying to write funny things. For now, you'll have to just settle for honest because the funny is currently out of stock and on order. Hopefully, the factory will call soon.

I'll keep writing ... 

but probably not ironically.

Sunday, August 18, 2013

Here's for the Thumb

Medical Intuition Update: I posted last week about Medical Intuition Made Easy, which was a post inspired by the new book of one of my favorite spiritual teacher's (and medical intuitive) Christine Lang. In it, I described the biggest symptom my Spirit sent me two weeks ago, which was that my mouse thumb stopped working. This is my right thumb, which I use to operate my roller ball mouse.

I am happy to report that I am doing much, much better. My chiropractor gave me some great advice about always having my elbows resting on the surface. You know, ironically, I was keeping my elbows off the table so that I could keep my back straighter ... like he asked me to! OY!

I also changed my desk around a bit. These changes and the fact that I got my Spirit's message have resolved the problem. And that is the key to understanding how you can heal with energy and spiritual understanding. You take action steps yes, but you also recognize the learning, which removes the need for the symptom. It's the two together that make the difference.

So many times, as Christine describes so well in her book, people take action steps without getting the message, which means that the Spirit will not let go of the symptom.

Your Spirit uses whatever is getting your attention to communicate and, unfortunately, physical pain gets your attention in a way that nothing else does. I knew that I was working too much. I kept telling myself to slow down, that it wasn't good for me. And .... and ... I didn't do anything to stop working or slow down.

But, when I saw that thumb shaking on its own and couldn't get control of it ...

1) I physically couldn't work any more.
2) And had to think about the consequences of not changing my attitude and behavior. Actually, not think, but feel those consequences; as if to say, "Do you see where this is going? You want to be injured permanently?"

My whole attitude has changed for the better. It was the shift that needed to happen, but the shift I had refused to do up until that point.

Was there a physical problem exacerbated by the way I was sitting and working? Yes. However, I have sat in much worse positions for much longer without experiencing those consequences. Losing control of my thumb was my Spirit stepping in to say, "Cut! End scene. You might want to re-write this sitcom."

I call moments like my temporary loss of thumb control getting clonked in the head by Spirit. My Spirit had tried everything else. When all else fails, it's time for the D word - Drastic.

I emailed Christine my blog post about the thumb and we chatted a bit. She mentioned how Spirit had clonked her in the head a few times recently too. It's just part of being human.

I just thank Source that I am intuitive myself and have found such excellent teachers to help me navigate these experiences.

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Exploding Exfoliant

It happened again....

Or should I say, I did it again.

I bought a skin care kit on QVC. I turned on the TV and there it was: an exfoliant being rubbed on the back of the host's hand ... again. When is something not being rubbed or displayed on the back of someone's hand on QVC? But I digress.

I have been a QVC shopper since high school. I was recruited by my older sister with a 60-inch silver rope necklace that I do still have but have only worn about three times over the past 20+ years. Now that I think of it, that necklace was the perfect introduction to QVC!

After many mistakes and impulse buys, I have got it narrowed down to two things (for the most part): skincare and make-up. And, I buy a lot of it. I can't be alone because every woman I meet (with good skin and make-up) inevitably tells me she's a QVC shopper.

And a note about the clothes: only Sports Savvy. Clothes are on HSN. Digression the second.

Now, I have my regular skincare on auto-delivery, but the one on the TV just now had an exfoliant! And that takes me to the back to the "incident" that occurred on the way back from my last business trip.

So, by now I have learned how get everything - including exfoliant - into my carry-on. As I was in line at the security gate and pulling out all my toiletries, I realized that one of the plastic bags was dripping. One of the plastic containers had exploded and was dripping all over me and the floor. Fair enough.

So, I wiped everything down as best I could and jammed everything into the trays and got ready to walk through, except this time I asked to waive the full-body X-ray tube. With everything I'd been hearing about them and the fact that this was my 10th or 12th flight in six weeks, I thought I would avoid another scan. Also, they always pat me down anyway. I think it's because my clothes are so loose and made of that slinky, somewhat reflective fabric ... courtesy of HSN I just realized. :)

So, I thought, in the way of all stupid ideas, "Why not?"

Well, one thing I didn't know is that when you refuse the X-ray tube, they pull everything you're carrying out, swab it, and run it through some kind of device that looks like Q invented for James Bond in 1965. This, in addition to the pat down I was used to.


The story gets interesting here because they found something on the Bond device. There is nothing quite like having airport security stick a swab from your bag into that ... whatever that was ... and seeing it come back red saying, "EXPLOSIVE DETECTED."

Speaking of explosive, the praying started immediately ... mostly to ward off another explosion .... of fear-induced diarrhea. They swabbed my clothes and my bags and brought out the second Bond Connery-style device and again and again, "EXPLOSIVE DETECTED."

It's amazing how security people won't look at you or talk to you like a person when you're sitting in the chair while they swab and check, swab and check. You're a suspect, an other, not to be trusted. I tried to say that one of my toiletries had exploded, but they looked right through me.

They took me to the special room for criminals while they waited for the "explosives expert." I did see a few signs from my angels in the form of yet another penny when I looked into the same spot where there hadn't been one before. Somehow, I knew I would be alright, but still .... anxiety! And prayer. Anxiety and prayer, the story of my life.

In the secret room, I got yet another pat down, then waited. When the explosive expert arrived, of course he was hot. I was living my nightmare of being rescued by a hot EMT ... only this time I would be interrogated and arrested by a super hot, muscled national security cop.

Seriously, why can't any chubby ugos go into Security (or rescue)? As a chubby ugo myself, I would appreciate the option of being arrested by one of my own kind. Kind of the way they ask if you have a preference for a male or female massage therapist at the spa. That seems fair to me. But I digress yet again.

Somehow, either because the security people did listen to me or were just smarter than I thought, they isolated the almost empty bottle of exfoliant. There is stood alone in the tray alone in the room with me.

As one of the female flight security people (TSA?) opened the door again for the hot explosives expert, he looked at me, pointed to the offending plastic bottle and said, "Don't ever bring that on a plane again."

So that was it. Great. Made it through without any uncontrolled bowel movements and I'm an upstanding member of society again.

However, I also exfoliate my face with an explosive everyday. Ummmm.....

I will never forget that just before I left the "room" and was packing up all my stuff again, the female security person pointed to one of my clear, plastic toiletry bags to asked me how I liked my eye cream .... which I bought on QVC of course. I told her I liked it, especially in California where it was so dry blah, blah, blah.

My life tends to be full of the surreal and the ridiculous .... and prayer, lots of prayer and asking for assistance. And that assistance always comes through!

After arriving home, I remember going to the beach one day and, as the water was crashing over my face and I was wiping it off, all I could think was, "Damn! It might be an explosive, but my face is as smooth as a baby's butt."

Still, I have really been hoping to find an exfoliating solution that would not run me afoul of airport security again.

Hence, my experience tonight with the 20th anniversary skincare package on QVC tonight. I was going to complain about there being no ingredient list on the web site for me to check ... until I realized that I have no frikkin' idea what ingredient is the explosive in my current exfoliant.

The new exfoliant should be here in a few days. Wish me luck!

And, next time, I'll just stand in the X-ray tube.

Monday, August 12, 2013

Medical Intuition ... the Easy Way

One of the greatest teachers I have ever worked with is Christine Lang. She just wrote a fantastic book about being a medical intuitive. Knowing Christine, I was expecting it to be good, but have you ever noticed that "good" when it comes to spiritual books feels so .... well, heavy. Hard to read. Difficult.

Mark Twain once said that he never wanted to write a classic because classics are books that everyone wants to say that they've read but no one actually wants to read. Well, we've got to come up with some kind of saying like that for spiritual books - the kind of books you know you should read but absolutely dread reading.

Well, Christine's book was even better than I expected, which is saying a lot because it's the opposite of the "classic" spiritual book. Easy, clear, and totally applicable to every day life. Ever since Anatomy of the Spirit (by Carolyn Myss) -- a true classic as defined above -- books about medical intuition tend to be written by nurses and PhD's and are frankly like torture to read. I'm still waiting on the college credits for having read Carolyn Myss ... as well as reimbursement for the migraine medication.

By way of contrast, Christine's book is honest, funny, and easy to read and understand. And, as I said earlier, applicable to your daily life. As such, since reading her book, I've been focusing on how our Spirit's communicate through physical symptoms. I have a whole stockpile of stories waiting to blog, but .... my work life seems to be sucking the life out of me.

Speaking of which, I had the doozy of all symptoms/messages last week. Wednesday or Thursday of last week, I lost control of my right thumb. Lost. Control. It was shaking so badly that I couldn't do anything with it.

I should clarify that I use a trackball mouse where I operate the ball part with my right thumb. So, no thumb, no work - day job and blogging. It scared the hell out of me! It still does. I've never lost control of a body part like that ... well, except when skiing or doing yoga .... you know, when I was asking my body to do something stupid and ridiculous and impossible or something NO ONE SHOULD EVER DO and then there's yoga. But I digress.

My shaking thumb was a wakeup call about how much work I've been doing. I know that things like that can happen from too much repetitive stress, but I think it was a big message to pull back, which I have.

There will always be impossible deadlines and fucktards who impose them. There is no getting around it in IT; it's fucktard central after all.

For years, I have struggled with how to handle it. Saying, "My workload is too heavy" doesn't matter when everyone works 12 hours a day. Say it and you're the problem. My approach has been to work to the point where I can sleep at night and pray that the deadline slips ... because it always slips.

I don't know anyone who handles it well.

For now, I slacked off on Friday big time. I worked an hour on and an hour off, so I could ice my shoulder and hand. I bought a big monitor to help with the slouching and need to rearrange my desk to be better for my arms.

It was a huge wake-up call from my Spirit that I needed.

And go buy Christine's book!

Wednesday, August 7, 2013

Thank you, Spirit! I needed that.

This post is going to feel a bit like a Jimmy Fallon Thank You note ... and it is!

I was about to blog about how I'm just not feeling that funny lately. My new job is overwhelming me a bit and today my mouse thumb (I use a rollerball mouse.) literally started twitching uncontrollably because every tendon in my mouse arm is inflamed.

Then, THEN, I went to mail a belated birthday card and get my mail. In the mail was a nightgown I had ordered from Amazon. This nightgown was supposed to be a little more - ahem - youthful and - ahem ahem - sexy-ish sort of.

I'm prepping for a man, you see. A man I keep being told I am going to meet soon and marry. (Seriously, I have had three different readings tell me that this guy is on his way.) So, going on the theory that the best defense is a good offense, I thought I would order some decent nightgowns.

The nightgowns I currently own ... honestly, a boy scout troop could pitch a tent under them. (And I didn't mean that to come out as pervy as it did.) Let's just say if I stand really straight, I would look like a miniature circus tent.

So this one has some lace on top and is a little tighter, but still nice and long for the coverage.

I offer that context because what came sliding out of the package after the nightgown was a subscription offer for a free wig catalog and an application to the AARP.

OK, now THAT'S funny! What demographic are these nightgowns in exactly? You'd think I'd ordered a mu-mu and curler set.

Thank you, Spirit. I needed that laugh.

And I'm sending the nightgown back ... but I may get the wig catalog just to see what other offers come with it. It might be time for a caftan!

Sunday, August 4, 2013

Following My Intuition ... and Not

So, today was one of those days where I felt like doing nothing. I just realized today that it's my first full week back home without the need to fly out again. Well, that makes me feel better about the somewhat ill-conceived day I had.

It started with Oprah and her damn Super Soul Sunday. Turning that on first thing in the morning is a guarantee that you won't do anything all day. Although, today was Deepak Chopra and ... I have no interest in watching him. There is a whole story behind it that just came flooding back, which I will blog about another time. Bottom line: He taught me a lot, just not anything he intended to teach.

Anyway, it was the Where are They Now? show that she runs marathon-style after that that got me ... got me on my butt on my couch. I just had that feeling that I didn't want to leave the house. You know? I kept looking outside at the gorgeous Florida day and feeling like I should go out there though.

It all goes back to my father, who used to walk around the house griping, "What am I raising here?!" He always used to say it when we didn't want to go jogging, play tennis, or talk about books. I always got the impression that he thought we were lazy and it made me feel worthless. It didn't really matter that I was taking college courses in high school, raising a little sister, and working a part-time job. If I didn't want to play tennis, I was lazy.

That horrible feeling of worthless shame has many times pushed me to do things that go against my intuition. Whenever I feel that shame spiral start swirling, I get up and do something even if it goes totally against my intuition. Given that I am a natural-born and trained intuitive, this struggle has led me to do some really stupid things, I realize.

Today, that was going out to the beach around 3:30-4p,m, because I had been inside all day on a nice sunny day when I should be outside, exercising or beaching or something. All I really felt like doing was staying inside and watching movies and TV shows. I had put on my bathing suit around 1 and just dawdled until 3 because my gut instinct was to stay home.

Feeling lazy and the associated shame creeping up, I went to the beach. It was lovely, I have to say. The past 8 weeks in Florida have been like monsoon season in India ... or whatever that must feel like. It rains constantly and is overcast all the time. Hence, my desire to take advantage of a sunny day.

Well, as I said, the beach was lovely - the water calm, people leaving so it wasn't too crowded. I decided to go for a walk down the beach and it was lovely. I think I was there maybe 20 minutes when it started to get cloudy. I felt like I should just leave, but ... I needed to exercise. Dad's voice. Dad's voice. Dad's voice.

I did turn around at least and the rain hit ... like a monsoon. I was so far from my chair that there was no point in running back towards it. I was feeling like I should really just go, but I forced myself to not be a worry-wart and just relax. I even swam a little.

I have to say that heavy rain over the green, calm water in that twilight-like light of a Florida storm was beautiful ... and would have been more so if the rain wasn't pelting me like hail.

So thoroughly soaked and standing by my chair, I didn't pack up right away even though I was feeling like I should go, I kept looking at the sky and seeing a clearing in the clouds just off in the distance.

Finally, a big bolt of lighting stuck about 75 feet in front of me and I was like, "Alright, it's time to go." 75 feet sounds far, but when it's lightening, it's not far at all.

The point is - I have so many stories like this: where I didn't follow my intuition and suffered the consequences. I tend to follow intuition when I can see the logic of it ... which is very foolish even though it sounds smart. I didn't want to be "lazy" and I didn't want to do something foolish. However, getting struck by lightening on the beach is just about as foolish as you can get!

Intuition, divine guidance, and connection to Source are not logical and that is a hard thing to reconcile in this 3D world.

Just recently, I did follow an illogical intuition and it worked out amazingly, in a way that logic could never have anticipated (foreseen? predicted? what's the verb?).

I was in my hotel and I felt so strongly and heard my Spirit tell me to go across the street to the Mexican restaurant for dinner. As I was procrastinating, waiting for some email or other, the feeling kept growing and becoming more intense to go across the street to the Mexican place. I remember saying out loud, "Alright, I just need to wait for ... (I don't remember now)."

Finally, I went to the Mexican place even though the email or whatever hadn't come through. When I got to the bar, in it were all the people I had been having meetings with all week. They were just being taken to their table, so I only had a few brief moments with them. If I had listened to my intuition sooner, I could have hung out with them for a while and who knows what would have come of that.

Logic isn't going to give you that kind of information, only Spirit can.

The key is not letting logic and childhood issues get in the way of it. It's a lesson I have had to learn so many times. I really want to get better at this.

There is a reason that intuitives who aren't very intellectual are often better at following Guidance.

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Toddler Skis and Hot EMTs

So, this article appeared in my FaceBook feed tonight:

Apparently, a growing number of people in this country are so obese that emergency helicopters and other medical transport units can't pick them up off the ground.... literally. They estimate that 5,000 patients a year are denied pickup because they are too heavy.

As a large, ahem, voluptuous, ahem,  really fat woman, I couldn't help but take notice. Anyone who is really heavy knows that flying of any kind induces serious anxiety. I mean really heavy, not people (ahem women) with body image disorders who think they're "fat"; we're talking serious poundage.

The sleepless night before the flight praying that the laws of physics change ... just this once. Sweating all the way through TSA and hoping it doesn't make you look suspicious.

  • Will I fit down the aisle?
  • Will I fit in the seat?
  • Will the seat belt buckle?
  • And please let me be seated next to a child. (Fat people are probably the only people on earth who pray to be seated next to children on a transcontinental flight.)
I actually have a seatbelt extender that one of the flight attendants handed me during one of my flying "incidents" that I'd rather not go into here ... although I probably will at some future date. Writers, we'll tell you everything eventually. 

I came by it honestly ... or jetlaggedly. The flight attendant gave it to me and somehow I found it later in one of my carry-ons. I don't think I took it intentionally, but when I found it at the hotel, I wasn't about to hand it back. 

Just having that extender has calmed me more than once ... even though I don't have to use it anymore. It was as calming as .... ice cream at the end of the day.... alright, now it's frozen yogurt and small portions. By the way, the big cup makes it feel huge. Free tip! And part of the reason that I don't need the extender anymore. Score!

Back to EMT helicopters stranding fat people, here is the quote from the article that I found most disturbing:
"So when a patient reported to weigh 250 pounds actually tips the scales at 350, emergency crews have a dilemma. Even if they fly around for 15 minutes and burn off fuel, they may not have enough lift to transport."
As if we all don't lie about our weight. The difference is that, once you're in the fat zone, you could say 250 or 350 and people wouldn't know it. Not really. Fat is fat and once you're fat, you're just fat. The next line you cross is the one where you need two canes to walk or a crane to get you out of your house. There is a vast array of poundage in between ... for some unknown reason.

I could totally see telling some hot, male EMT with muscles bulging out of his shirt that I was 250 out of embarrassment ... even if I was dying.  As these people were ... and did (lie about their weight not die). That's how deep the shame goes. And 5,000 people lived through it ... or not. The article didn't actually say how many of the stranded died.

250, as we all know, seems to be the cutoff for normal in our culture. Fitness equipment will rarely claim to hold over 250 pounds ... without irony. It is conceivable after all that a 6'4" man with extensive muscle mass could be 250 pounds and healthy, so let's cut it off there. Good choice! It's not like people over 250 pounds might need the exercise equipment or anything.

I have spent many an hour on an elliptical machine praying that I don't break it because I'm over the stated weight limit. Sweating and panting in my crappy sweatpants and Hanes T-shirt (because they don't make workout clothes over a certain size, again without irony) I came up with load after load of bullshit I would tell the beefy gym attendant - or worse, tiny gym attendant -  if the machine broke. None of them mentioning my actual weight.

I can't remember any of those stories now, but they were brilliant and totally believable.

My other vision -  who needs TV?! - was of me sprawled out on the equipment after collapsing from the exertion and then electrocuting myself because I barfed over the machine before collapsing. Then, they'd have to call the EMTs  - at which point I would plead, "Please don't wheeze... send any ... gasp ... hot ones."

Now, I can add that they would call the helicopter and it would come ... but it would just circle overhead like a vulture over a landfill, the hot pilot radioing the hot EMT, "She's 350 if she's an ounce."

Circling ... circling with the propellers making that whop whop whop whop noise as I lay there thinking, "Hot. Why are they always so hot?"

Am I the only woman who fears being rescued by hot men? It's just so much more extra super-duper humiliating. I want to be rescued by Andre the Giant (RIP).

This lying about the weight business reminds me of the time - the one and only time - I went skiing. It was college and I had not yet learned to heed my sister's advice that I should get fatter friends. My friends were skinny and skinny is as skinny does and skinny goes skiing.

If you don't have your own skis, you have to rent some from the chalet or the lodge or the whatever the hell they call that place. Weellll, did you know that they ask you how much you weigh? In front of a whole room full of people? Who are standing behind you wearing expressions that say, "Hurry up, lady!"

This is it.

Right here.

The line between skinny and fat people. Fat people would never, ever engage in an activity where they have to say how much they weigh in front of a room of non-fat people!! Weight Watchers is the obvious exception ... because it's a room full of fat people. I have attended 12 step meetings for overeating where no one says how much they weigh.

Only skinny people would think that telling some "dude" who keeps having to jerk his head to get the overgrown bangs out of his eyes your weight ... in FRONT OF OTHER PEOPLE is no big deal.

They want to know your weight so that they can figure out how large the skis need to be to hold you.


And I lied ... a LOT! By about 150 pounds. So, people who told the EMTs they were 100 pounds less than they were? I feel you. I do not and cannot judge you.

I don't think they make skis big enough for my actual weight at that time ... and I don't think it's legal to try to go down a mountain with canoes strapped to your feet.

I made it down the mountain by the grace of God, the angelic kingdom, and my large, fat ass upon which I fell the second those toothpick slats hit the snow. I inchwormed my way down the mountain on all the cellulite I had spend years acquiring. Finally, an investment that actually paid dividends.

I tried to break my fall with my hand and injured the large pad of my thumb. It hurt like hell and I really thought they were going to have to take me to the hospital. Hot ski bums and hot EMTs? No. Fucking. Way.

Thank God I wasn't really hurt. If so, I'd still be on that mountain today waiting for the helicopter as it circled above, the hot pilot radioing the hot EMT, "Did you give her the toddler skis?"

Jesus! I really could have killed myself. Like I said, people stranded after lying about your weight, you have all my compassion.

Saturday, July 13, 2013

I Had a Dream ... of Justice for Trayvon Until Tonight

I posted this article yesterday thinking that the verdict in the Zimmerman trial had come back guilty. I don't know why I thought that yesterday; I blame the horrible jet-lag and 12-hour workdays on the opposite coast.

I remember thinking it was great that logic had won the day. Any objective assessment of the facts (as provided in this article) = conviction. So, now that the verdict has come back not guilty, it's about subjectives and that means it's about race.

When I heard that all six jurors were women, I also thought conviction. This is every mother's nightmare, right? Wrong, it's every black mother's nightmare and that's the difference.

When the Trayvon Martin case hit the news the first time, I was listening to the Randi Rhodes show a lot. I will never forget the black parents calling into the show and openly weeping while they explained that this is what every one of them fears.

How they have to sit down with their kids, especially their male kids, and tell them how the world sees them differently because they're black and what might happen because of it. Not to resist arrest, to walk away from fights, to keep their noses cleaner than they think they have to because of what might happen. And what might happen is that a young black man can be murdered then blamed for it because facts don't matter when you're black and male.

Now, all I can think about are those parents and what they're telling their kids tonight. And how sad I am that these conversations ever had to go on at all and how much more desperate those conversations are going to be over the next few months. Because, no matter how advanced we think we are as a country, there are so many of us who think a black kid walking through the neighborhood is more dangerous than some-wannabe-cop-turned-vigilante with a loaded gun driving through the neighborhood. And that's an objective assessment of the facts of this case.

And how do you tell your kids that?

I don't even know how to explain it to myself.

I pray that we stop letting fear run our lives and our courts. I pray that we stop hearing that ching-ching noise from Law & Order every time we see a black kid in a hoodie. Black kids are kids not perpetrators. Every lunatic serial killer with a backyard full of buried bodies turns out to be some middle-aged white guy from the Midwest and none of us hear that noise when we walk into a bank.

Mostly, I pray for the parents of black children. May God give them strength as they try to keep their kids safe, hoodie or no hoodie.

Monday, July 8, 2013

Dear God ... Why Blog? Why Now?

Dear God,

I have no idea why I'm writing this blog ... other than to say ... You made me. Seriously, I'm following the inner prompt. Wow. "Inner prompt" Where did I pull that one from?

This is what happens when you overeducate a person. Especially when you overeducate a person in a wordy discipline in the Humanities. See? I didn't say "verbose." I caught myself ... but just barely.

"Inner prompt" sounds like some phrase from one of those awful self-help/yoga/new age/manifesting classes. (It's all running together these days.) Something like,

"Follow the inner prompt your spirit is sending ... and somehow this translates into huffing and puffing through alternating nostrils on a hardwood floor..."

Anyway, I keep hearing through readings and the like that I should blog, so I am. I have all these thoughts and obviously the world needs to hear them.

However, I have to digress to talk about the computer set up I'm on right now. I'm sitting in a Best Western (not the hotel of my best moments - more later) and blogging on the computer in the Business Center.

I'm here on a business trip with only my work laptop and blogging on my work laptop just feels wrong. Don't you think? I cannot bring myself to write about my inner prompts and nasal huffing on a work laptop. I just think, "They'll know! They'll know I have a personality and then I'll be out on the steets!"

So, my "inner prompt" leaves me with only one option: the great American ... hotel business center.

For starters, I just walked in from a stroll through the neighborhood that included a pitstop at Trader Joe's, which resulted in me carrying a TJ bag in through the lobby. As I sat down, I heard a swift knock on the door behind me. It was the front desk clerk asking me if I was staying here.

He was quite apologetic, but seeing it through his eyes, I can see how a woman in her frumpy, after-work, exercise clothes walking in with a grocery bag doesn't exactly scream, "Paying customer!" As I pulled out my room key, he backed away apologizing. I wonder how many people walk in off the street and try to use the computer here .... hmmmm.

That brings me back to the computer here, which is after all the subject of my first or second digression. Maybe my third? But I digress.

The browser on this computer is on lockdown to prevent you from watching porn mostly. At least, I think. Maybe they had too many people walking in off the street and had to change it. Anyway, lockdown means custom browser, which means not IE, not Firefox, not Chrome. It's some other cock-eyed browser chock full of off-brand icon buttons that look sort of like the major browsers but are just different enough to be disorienting.

Here's the thing - I am convinced that this custom hotel business center browser is actually NETSCAPE with a different spinning letter in upper right corner. Yeah, that's right NETSCAPE!!!

The younger you are, the more likely it is that you have no idea what I'm talking about here. Netscape was the early competitor to IE back in the very, very early days of the World Wide Web. So early that we actually called it the "World Wide Web."

Anyone who ever went to college in the 90s knows all about Netscape because it was loaded on every university computer in the library. And this was back when the computers were so big, they had to start building extra wings to fit them all in.

The longer I describe Netscape, the deeper the PTSD that started when I first sat down is getting. Wow! Memories.

The other most noticeable thing about the locked-down hotel business center computer is that the monitor is GIGANTIC! I think it's the biggest monitor I've ever seen that's not a TV. In fact, it might be bigger than my TV.

The weird part is that the resolution and the text are TINY and I can't change it because of the aforementioned lockdown. Warning: overeducated Humanities student at the keyboard!

As a result, the text I'm typing looks like tiny littly ants crawling across the screen while 60-70% of the screen is blank, white space. It's the stupidest thing.

They didn't even have to lock it down so strangers off the street wouldn't come in here to watch porn. They couldn't see what was happening anyway.

Alright, I think I have satisfied both God and the inner prompt. Good night!

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Building Hogwarts Next Door and How it's Just Like Yoga Breathing

You know, you can't pick your neighbors sometimes.

I thought working from home would be so much more peaceful.  I was so, so wrong.

Yesterday, the landscaping people were outside my sliding doors doing something with a leaf blower. I say something because it would

buzzzzzzz for about 10 seconds
and then stop,
then silent for a 30 seconds and then
buzzzzzzzz for 10,
silent for 20,
buzzzzzzzz  for 30

and so on for most of the morning and I don't know what the hell that could be. Don't you just point leaf blowers and ... blow?

This on and off went on for 20 minutes right outside my sliding doors. The ones I now sit 15 feet from all day. This buzzing pattern continued through all the condos around me all morning.

It was like one of those bizarre breathing rituals you do in some yoga classes, with the thumb on one nostril and the pinky on the other

inhale left nostril, thumb on right nostril
exhale left nostril, thumb on right nostril
inhale right nostril, pinky on left nostril
exhale right nostril, thumb on left nostril
inhale left nostril, thumb on right nostril
exhale left nostril, thumb on right nostril

It's as .... not-relaxing as it sounds, or as it reads rather. And your fingers get all gooey and gross from the ... uh .... drippings from your nose. There's this thing that yoga-people don't realize about alternate nostril breathing (I think that's what it's called) ... when you make me press my nostril ... or any part of my breathing apparatus really ... it makes me feel like like someone is trying to kill me by cutting off my oxygen.

Then, my body's natural, organic, and vegan (yeah vegan!) will to live kicks in and I start sucking that air in my nostril as though my life depends on it because ... it feels like it does. Then, of course, I have to blow it out just as hard, which is where the ooey, gooeys start dripping or in some cases shooting out my nose. Also, there's that sucking, sloppy sound that happens when you press your finger down on a nostril or remove it from a nostril.

The whole process is a gooey, disgusting mess is what I'm saying.

And before you can help it, that gooey mess is oozing down your arm and - depending on whether it's allergy season or not - down into your elbow.

Then, there's the rhythm. When someone is guiding you through a breathing exercise, they are not doing that exercise themselves. There's no way. I've led meditations and I always breathe .... and then remind my followers to breathe ... knowing that there is no way we're in sync. You can't talk and and breathe deep at the same time. Which is why, if you have ever had to endure an alternate nostril breathing exercise (and you have my sympathy if you have), you know that you wind up feeling like you can't keep up with the teacher. And that's supposed to come later - when she twists up like a pretzel.

And here's the insult to all that injury: the teacher is usually saying things like,
  • "Relaaaaxxxx" Ummmm, I'm fighting for my life? 
  • "Follow at your own pace. Don't worry about me"  Really? Of course, I'm going to inhale when you say "inhale" and exhale when you say "exhale." It's a class and I'm a follower in it. Hello!
  • "This practice helps you center your mind."  On what? The snot in my elbow? I don't want to focus on that.
  • "Breathing like this helps you concentrate on the present moment."  Well, yes, but in the present moment, I feel like I'm being suffocated by a movie villain in yoga pants who it turns out is me. There's snot on my fingers and running down my arm. My nose won't stop making sex noises. And, I think my legs are going numb from sitting this way.
  • "Release your thoughts" Release my thoughts?! How the hell am I gonna count to 10? The only thought I'd like to release is the one I had that told me to try yoga because it would help me relax.

I forgot about the counting. You're supposed to do it 10 times on each nostril ... or 5 times on each nostril for a total of 10 ... I can't remember. The last time I had to endure this, I asphyxiated myself and lost a few brain cells, so I don't remember.

If you've ever been to a yoga class and thought,
"Jesus, I thought I was gonna die before we even did anything!" 
you've probably been asked to do alternate nostril breathing.

By the way, is it me or does my description sound like water-boarding? The panting, the wetness, the being suffocated. I wonder what would happen if a teacher asked,
"Did you cheat on your spouse?"
right in the middle of all the other shit they say. I think people would spontaneously confess.

Anyway, back to my noisy apartment-now-office yesterday. After the alternate leaf-blower/yoga breathing experience of yesterday morning. I started to hear a similar sound around 8 p.m.

Are you freaking kidding me? What could they be doing now? 

And then I realized that I could feel a vibration coming from my front door. I opened it and inched out. Well, my dumbass neighbors have a buzz saw on their porch. They're building something that required them to turn that thing on and off intermittently all night! Right outside my door!

The only thing that stopped me from going out there was my desire to not play out a scene from COPS in my parking lot. WTF are they building over there? Hogwarts?

You know, I just realized the other thing in my life that buzzes intermittently - my sister's snoring!! I shared a room with her for almost 20 years and every night she would be quiet and then start building and building until she would blow herself out and stop .... then start all over again. I never got any sleep.

No wonder I was so stressed out yesterday:
  • the intermittent buzzing
  • the yoga flashbacks
  • the sister-snoring PTSD
  • the dumbass neighbors
Maybe I should go to the library tomorrow.

Monday, July 1, 2013

What Happens When You Let Anxiety Rule the Day ....

... or the night as is usually the case for me.

I had one of those nights. I was up all night. Last night, was a special case of insomnia in which, I just said "Fuck it!" and read a book. Sometimes, why put yourself through the stress of trying to sleep. That sounds like something that should not be - stressing about sleep. However, to those of you who've been there, you know exactly what I mean.

You struggle.
You beat yourself up.
You get yourself all worked up about relaxing ... of all thing.




As a veteran of this process, there are nights when I just don't even try to sleep. I think I'm being smart, though. Why not stay up and do something useful?

However, I didn't. This blog was supposed to be an outlet for that anxiety. A creative outlet. And. I. Didn't. Do. It.

Until now.

I didn't even think of it until now. You know why? Because I was passing in my chair. That kind of twitchy, watery-eyed alternate universe you enter when you're so tired you can't function.

Why was I so anxious? Today is my first work-from-home day on my new job. I was supposed to be watching training videos and could not hold it together.

I have had two weeks of running myself ragged in on a client site, but today feels like the first real day.

And, as per usual with anxiety like this, it's nothing. There was nothing to worry about. I'm getting so much better, but last night I was blindsided and I let it take me instead of taking control.

Worry accomplishes nothing. The lie of it is this hyper-mental state where you convince yourself that it's productive to "think things through" when you're mind is actually going a mile a minute to keep the fear at bay. That endless mental chatter is the stuff of daily corporate life, but, ironically, it wrecks your ability to do your job ... like me, passing out when I am supposed to be training.

Anxiety accomplishes nothing; it can just be so much more convincing in the middle of the night than logic and connecting to Source.

I didn't catch myself last night cut myself lose from the

Sunday, June 23, 2013

Sometimes Following Your Intuition Can Be Really Fun ... 'Cause There's Jewelry and Other Cool Stuff

So, today I'm packing for another business trip tomorrow. As I was looking at my jewelry, I realized that I don't really have enough small, professional earrings, which is why I wore the same pair all last week.

I love jewelry and I especially love earring because, well, they always fit.
When you've lost and gained, lost and gained, mostly gained as much weight as I have ... it's important to have things you love that fit. When I moved to Florida, I took 15 to 20 crates full of my fat to skinny/skinny to fat clothes. At any given time, I can't wear the majority of the clothes I own.

In any case, the result is that I have a lot of really cool earrings, which means they are too big, too funky, too odd for a client site. I also have some big, long necklaces because I'm ... big and long. The combination of big or funky earring and big necklaces is ... not good.

So, today, while I was desperate to get out of the house after working, packing, doing laundry, I had a whole plan. A plan which didn't include this podunk little fair here in town that I only found out about yesterday.

Anglea Boswell, the fantastic owner of Dream Angels told me that she was going to have a booth at this little fair yesterday after my reading. I helped her pack up. 

So, as I was running errands, I felt that I should go to that fair before I went to the beach. (I have to see the ocean before I get on yet another plane tomorrow!). I had to ask why and the answer I heard from my angels, spirit, whomever, was "earrings!"

When I arrived, I walked around mostly trying to block out the unbelievably loud band and not get eaten alive by noceums. I'd walked the whole place, said "Hi!" to Angela, and sort of wondered. Then, I saw about three pairs of earrings at this booth.

The woman was just setting up and pointed me to a bin she had just put out on the table. They were absolutely PERFECT!! I bought 12 pair for $50 and they are so perfect for my trip; I'm so excited!

While I was picking earring for the trip, I could feel my Mom come through (my Mom is dead) to give my sister in California a pair. My older sister and I are a bit estranged at the moment. She cut the family out of her wedding, it's a whole thing, and I couldn't let it go. I've forgiven her and I know my Mom wants us to make peace.

On the first day of my new job, I was so overwhelmed that I got lost on the way home. I kept crossing over the highway at points where there was no access ramp. As I was trying to process why I was going to California, I passed this HUGE billboard that said "SISTERS!"

That was my first inkling of my Mom's involvement.

I'm trying to make arrangements to visit my sister next week. Just now, I was looking through the earrings to pick a pair and I felt it when a pair came up. I literally said out loud, "MOM!" because they were my favorite pair. Typical sister shit! Ha ha ha!

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

A Spirit in the Corporate World

This morning while prepping in the hotel lobby for Round Two of all day meetings (and only my third full day on the job), I heard Spirits in the Material World by the Police. It made me laugh because it was the only actual song I heard in the 30 minutes I sat there. The rest was background, elevator music.

It's the essence of what I'm going through now. I had all this time off to get to know myself and my spirit  without distractions and now BOOM! I'm back in the bewildering, exhausting, and soul-sucking corporate world. And my goal this time is to not get ... um ... sucked. *~*

I must employ a healthy detachment from this world, the corporate world, and recognize that my world is elsewhere.

I've been reminded to remember that this world is all an illusion, but that is not going to fly with me. Ever. I've been hearing it for over a decade and "It's all an illusion" is like a tinfoil in the tooth to me as I chow down on spirituality.

I'll never swallow it. I don't believe it.

What people are getting at with that observation is that this world is not the most real, not the ultimate truth about you or your existence. Your 3D experiences are real, but not as real as the soul inside interpreting those experiences.

The whole spiritual journey is to identify with the soul inside and not your physical address. The difference between ultimate reality and a lesser or lower reality does not make the lower reality an illusion.

Have you ever been punched in the gut? I have and it's pretty real.

Have you ever merged with Creator? I have and it makes a punch in the gut ... all blurry and vague. I have gone to Creator, my angels, my spirit so full of 3D questions and angst only to have them fade away like vapor when I truly connect. [Only to return and shout, "Crap! I didn't ask anything I was supposed to!" I'm starting to wonder if forgetting those material questions is that answer in itself ... ]

So, this morning, while wading back into a former reality of mine, a reality I let eclipse my spiritual path many times, it was a nice reminder to remember that the material world is just an experience but not my essence, not my ultimate truth.

It's time to hold fast in the hurricane as 3D "reality" crashes around me.

Sunday, June 16, 2013

Sometimes You Don't Need Your Angels to Tell You ....

Sooo, even though Idid just land a great job, all of my job alerts are still on. I just checked them and there is a position in my field and industry where I have the most expertise. I had just finished meditating and, being connected, I could hear my angels say, "This is not the job for you."

So, I clicked on it anyway of course and the first bullet point I see is:

"Must have high level of interpersonal skills to handle sensitive and confidential situations. Position continually requires demonstrated poise, tact and diplomacy."
Yeah, that's not me.

I'd like to think that I would have figured this out on my own anyway, but thanks anyway Angels! :D

This is my Message to You - hoo - hoo

I have had an anxiety problem for so long that I didn't know I had an anxiety problem until recently. Ain't that some shit?!

Well, today is my second day on my new job and I spend it in the airport, flying out to California for a business trip ... in front of clients.

Wellll, I was handling the anxiety this would give anyone ... no, actually, I am. As the two lives I seem to be living would have it, I spent all day yesterday at an Angel workshop ... also in Fort Lauderdale. Hmmm...

Anyway, I think that set me up quite nicely for this week!

All day, I have been thanking my angels and thanking my angels and I keep hearing this song.

Of course, I am. However, the key line is "every little thing is gonna be alright" because the habit I am releasing seems to keep coming up with stupid little things to worry about.

Thank you Angels! I got your message to me - hee - hee.

Friday, June 14, 2013

Coming Full Circle ... All the Way to the Bank

Today was my first official day at my new job. It's been four months since I received a paycheck for my labor. I actually got the check yesterday, which I blogged about. When I woke up, that Chumbawumba song that goes, "I get knocked down, but I get up again..."

At the time, I was like WTH?! And then I realized that it's the perfect song for today. I did get knocked down and get back up. I have had a few fantastic readings with Angela Boswell from Dream Angels in Jupiter, Fl. She uses these beautiful tarot cards and the falling Tower has come up in many positions and it was obvious to both of us that my life was falling apart. Not much intuition needed for that one!

I moved to Florida in November after two years of desperately wanting to move. It took me about a year to admit to anyone that I wanted to move and then another year + to find a job here. During that time, people kept asking if I would move without a job and I was horrified. NO! Of course, I would only move if I had a job.

Well, I got one. I moved. I got fired three months later.

It was kind of mutual because they were fucktards of the highest order and I couldn't believe I moved here for that ... but still I was left with no income, in a new place where I knew one person. Shit yeah! I got knocked down. And I was stunned, hurt, and scared shitless.

I think it took me three weeks just to get over the shock.

They walked me out!
They walked me OUT?
THEY walked ME out?!?!?
They walked me out.

I had to pack up my desk with no warning and in front of the whole office. My hands were shaking so bad I could hardly sign the agreement. They gave me no reason. No warning. And ensured me that no one would watch me clear out my desk...

which of course just made it so much worse.

Because they all knew. They had been told that I would be walked out that morning. It explained why they all looked through me ... as though I wasn't there. And why the woman who had stabbed me in the back to ensure that I was walked out left the office with some weird, twitchy explanation at 11am.  (She was such a weird, twitchy one that I barely noticed.)

The guy who hired me looked at me as though I was a piece of shit on his shoe and said "[woman who stabbed me in the back] and I agree that we need to..."

There's more to this story, but that will be another blog.

Well, today, a wild confluence events had me driving through that parking lot again ... today ... on my first day of my new job. A job I was never sure I would get.

To summarize, I definitely wanted to deposit my first check ASAP and one of the only places I can do that is a credit union around the corner from the fucktards' office. Credits unions use this thing called "shared branching" when you move out of the vicinity of your credit union ... but it's only certain credit unions. Hence, the location of one of the only places I could deposit that check.

I'm still not sure how to describe how I felt when driving past the scene of my firing/layoff/whatever the hell that was. It wasn't quite the victory you'd think ... or I had always thought it would be. All I could think of was how eager I was to drive past and get on with the rest of my day.

Ironically, the most hurtful part of the day was that I posted to FaceBook that I woke up with that Chumbawumba song in my head and how perfect for my first day back and no one, not a single one of my friends liked it or commented or anything. Just like no one wished me Happy Birthday! on my birthday this past November just after I moved.

Angela explained that they are jealous because they believe my jokes. Talk about full circle.

They think because I joke about life, it's easy for me and it's not easy for me. And I must not even be grateful for it because I make jokes. Doesn't anyone know that if I didn't learn to make jokes and laugh through pain, I would have blown my brains out years ago? I'd be one of those women who have to be removed from their trailers with a crane.

I guess it's the price of being funny.

By the way, if you doubt my theory on joking your way through suicidal thoughts so that you don't actually kill yourself, listen to Paul Gilmartin's podcast.

Thursday, June 13, 2013

"Say 'Thank You!' Gilbert" my favorite line from the awesome movie What's Eating Gilbert Grape? (I was trying to find a clip on YT, but it's taking forever.)

It comes to mind because I recently had an epiphany regarding how to interact with my angels involving the phrase "Thank you."

I was listening to an interview with Kyle Gray where he said that he walks his talk everyday by saying "Thank you Angels for [fill in the blank]."

Now, this isn't the first time that I have heard this message or, rather, this methodology. What struck me was why it was so effective. Something that had never occurred to me before.

In the past, when I heard people saying (or suggesting saying), "Thank you Angels for guiding me." for instance, they have described the value of this methodology by saying that you are affirming that it is already done. And I think that just tripped my bullshit wire. Or my WTF does that mean? wire. Some wire, somewhere and I ignored it.

When I heard it again the other day, though, I realized why it works: receiving.

In addition to the fact that gratitude always feels better than a bad attitude, there is something programmed into all of us to say "thank you" when we receive something.

Well, those of us of a certain age anyway. I've run into some younger people who ... oh forget that. That's a whole other blog and I am being positive right now. :)

To say "Thank you, Angels," "Thank you, guides," "Thank you, spirit," is put yourself in the mind of having received something without ANY EXTRA WORK AT ALL! It just happens. You're brain believes something has been received when you say "thank you."

If you are like me, receiving is a huge issue. When you grow up deprived, you ask for a lot of things you don't get until you just give up and learn to suffer in silence believing that nothing and no one is coming to help you, which then becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy and the same cycle keeps repeating.

Doreen Virtue and most spiritual teachers harp on the fact that you need to ask for help and this is true.

But a lot of us did a lot of asking and not getting when we were growing up. To ask now just brings that hurt to the surface. The neglected child's motto, "Don't ask and you can't be disappointed." This is why we don't ask or get sketchy results when we do. We ask expecting to receive nothing and nothing is often what we get.

Not because the Angels, Guides, and Spirit aren't there.
Not because they don't love us.
Not because they don't hear us.
Not because they don't want to help us or are too wrapped up in their messy personal lives like our parents were.

Nothing comes back because we expect nothing from all those times we asked for something and got nothing in return.

And this just makes us angrier, and more bitter, and more ... trapped.

You can try to reprogram your whole mind, release this pattern, release this sadness. And God knows that I have spent many years (and many thousands of dollars) doing just that. However ... it's like climbing Everest: long, arduous, and you keep wondering if you are ever going to reach the top.


You can use the mind you already have with all its quirks while you're working it all out. One of its quirks is "thank you" means I just received something and it's done. Just like that. For free!

The difference between asking for help and saying "thank you" for help may seem like nothing, but it's everything is asking means you ask in vain and thanking means you get the help you were asking for.

I have made this switch in the past few days and it is such a big difference to me.

Just this morning I was confused about a flight for an upcoming business trip and I said, "Thank you Angels for letting me know whether to fly back on Friday or Saturday." I heard "Friday" plainly and clearly. Just like that. For free! So Friday it is and I am not going to think about it anymore.

So, next time you need something, say "thank you" for it first and then wait for it to show up.

Because it will; you tricked your mind into believing it and that's how the angels can plug into you and send all that light to you.

All my love to you, Internet world.