Thursday, June 10, 2010

So long since I last wrote...

Time changes everything. It has been so long since I have felt like writing in this blog. I really wasn't sure what kind of blog I wanted to do and if I should stick to a certain theme or not. I usually just enjoy writing about what ever strikes me as interesting to write about at a given time. Trying to blog in a way that would attract readers and have ads attached to my blog was nothing but stress. I hope the ads are gone. I think I only made 1/2 a penny on them anyway.

There is much going on in my life these days. I am happier than I have ever been. I have changed in ways too involved to describe in a quick blog update and don't know if anyone reading cares to hear about it anyway. My new baby is a one year old now too which is exciting and scary at the same time. I am opening a new business soon. Been doing the prep work for it for the last 6 months. I had planned on opening it this month but found out that I need to have a surgery which will take a few months to fully recover from so it looks like it will be after the summer. Just in case the mystery is overcoming you I will tell you now that the new business is providing daycare to children inside my home. I am almost fully licensed. It was an interesting process I can share with anyone who needs to know or is considering trying it.

Oh, just in case your concerned, the friend I was inspired by to write the suicide related blog is still alive and kicking though I wouldn't call him a friend at this point.

I think I'll just blog about whatever in here from time to time without an agenda. Let me know if you want me to discuss something in particular.

Love to all,

Saturday, October 10, 2009

How Do You Cope?

Have you ever had a friend come to a point in their life where they feel there is nothing left to live for, that if they are not living for someone else, there is nothing to keep them going? There are two separate people in my life going through this very thing right now.

Over the years I have had many friends who have lost their will to live. I have even had a few friends, one a close friend, end his life. Usually it is a relationship breakup which causes my friends to lose desires and wish for an instant end to their unbearable pain. As a friend, the only thing I have ever known how to do is to try to keep them distracted and inspired while letting time do its healing thing.

Several years ago, a close friend of mine just gave up on life. He called me at 4am hoping to make some kind of connection. I talked him down. Brought him some peace with my words and hopeful optimism. I will never forget his voice when he said:

"Gina, I am 31 years old, I will never find love like this again."

He promised to call me if he ever got so low again as to consider ending his life. Three months or so later I got an email from his brother inviting me to my friends memorial. My friend, his name is/was Dave by the way, had called me a few times that month. I was busy with a new relationship myself and had not returned his calls. Imagine if you dare, how I felt when I heard the news.

Yes, I know it wasn't my fault. No, I will never get over it or forgive myself for not being there for him. He needed someone to save him as we all do from time to time. I know it is unhealthy and co-dependent to rely on our friends to be a life line but... Humans need humans. And we need love. Take that essential away and we lose touch with reality. We lose touch in general.

I will blog more on reality, my concepts of it, dreams and also about loneliness and hope. Sometimes I think it is our illusions that keep us going. Sure, if life is the game, staying alive would be one way to win it. I decided a lifetime ago that my ultimate goal in life was to enjoy myself and be happy. Ignorance may be bliss but it is an arduous task to forget all that you have learned to find that bliss. I might even say impossible.

For instance, first love. Most of us do not marry and stay forever with our first love. How do we recover from this? How do we go on? We trick ourselves. We tell ourselves that the new love somehow replaces or is better than the first love. That this time things will be different. Love is love is love is love. Is it the tricks we play on ourselves that keep us going? Is love anything more than a culmination of chemicals in our blood stream that continually motivate us?

Right now teenagers (really people of all ages) are so wrapped up in the story of  "Twilight". Seriously, that book,the first one at least, causes people to remember what falling in love felt like. It feels like love! And those characters don't do anything but talk about their love for each other. We, the readers, don't have a clue what that love is based on. This silly children's book pleads the case that love (especially if you can feel like you are falling for it from reading a book) is nothing more than timing and chemicals. That it has very little to do with some greater truth. And yet it kills a million hearts every moment. Is love just a chemical to keep us procreating and continuing our species and nothing more?

I want to know your thoughts, even if they don't seem totally on topic with this blog.

Reality, such an easy word to throw around but not a simple word to define. Readers, that is if I have any left after not blogging for so long and after this mostly non-cohesive post. Please answer a few questions for me.

What keeps you going. When you wake up in the morning, what is it that gets you out of bed? Why?
Have you ever lost everything? What kept you from ending your life? Was it a friend, a family member, your faith, your pet or was it something else?

I value input from anyone who comes across this blog. I believe we are all fellow travelers on this often confusing adventure of life.


Tuesday, September 15, 2009

On the lonely Side

Went for a walk around the town in the middle of the night last week. Cool wind in my face helps to push away darker thoughts sometimes. I walked at a fast pace through a thick forest of buildings, college students and bikes.

There are times when I just can't walk fast enough. As though the pace of my gait will actually push me through the rough times just a little bit more quickly. But the buildings windows throw my reflection back at me and cold moments sometimes come to light.

I thought of a day when I had first moved to this new town. I had been ill for a while and had not attempted to connect with loved ones for some time. I felt alone. Old and tired, weathered by life and illness. I had a very superficial thought that perhaps if I spent a little money on myself I might feel better. What I really needed was some conversation. A flutter of inspiration in the form of a caffeine induced philosophy session with a respected acquaintance or friend. But there were no friends to be found.

I entered the tiny nail salon just before their closing time. Jenny, one of the three pretty young Asian manicurists offered to do my nails. As she was buffing and clipping, the smell of acrylic in my nose, I took a moment to notice my surroundings. There was one other customer. She was having her toenails painted. She looked sad. I thought for a moment I saw something in her eyes. Perhaps she was feeling the same sense of emptiness. Maybe she walked into that salon out of desperation hoping to find a human to talk to and willing to pay for them for their time.

The salon was showing a movie on a small T.V. I only saw the middle portion. It was called "Under the Tuscan Sun" I think. I smiled at the other customer and she asked me if I had seen the movie before. She told me a little about the story and I mentioned a book that I had read that sounded similar called "Eat, Pray, Love" by Elizabeth Gilbert. I was somewhat over excited by this small dose of human interaction. She told me about her pet horses and that she had her own business.

I started to perk up. I could do this. I could put myself out there and meet people. I could make friends. Social anxiety be damned! By the time my nails were done she was asking me for my number. She said we should get coffee sometime. I couldn't help smiling. I walked a little prouder, stood a little taller. It is amazing what social creatures we humans are. And yet...It is always so complicated, trying to find people we can relate to.

I started to imagine her as my friend. Making lunch together at her place and going for a ride on her horses. I haven't been on a horse since 3rd grade. I stopped at the grocery store on my way home. I picked up two whole meals worth of food. I had been cooking for just myself and eating mostly frozen pre-mades. I thought I might invite my new "friend" for dinner the next day. Maybe we could actually watch the movie we talked through in the nail salon. I would even remember to loan her the book I told her about.

But perhaps I was being too eager. Making something out of nothing. I didn't get her number. She probably wouldn't ever remember to call that over friendly awkward woman she met while sprucing up her toes. A few big exhales and a box of cookies later and I had almost put the whole excitement out of my head.

And then the next day:


I had gone through so many different emotions the night before. Starting out feeling so lonely, finding the hope of making a friend and then dashing my own hopes out of the fear that they might not come true. But, she called me! She wanted to meet for coffee!

We met up at a local coffee shop, an independently owned small business I had found a few months prior and really like the atmosphere in. I arrived 20 minutes before we were supposed to meet up so I could reread a little of Eat, Pray, Love. I wanted to be able to talk to her about it after she had completed it.

She arrived about 10 minutes late. I had started thinking she was going to flake out about 1 minute after our meet up time and my mood had dropped again. She walked in the front doors and immediately saw me. I was on the sofa I had reserved for the two of us in the far corner where the light wasn't quite as harsh. After dropping a load of books on the coffee table she announced that she had already picked up some coffee on her way to meet me but she would wait while I got myself some. Hmmm...

When I returned to our little sofa area she had several items laid out on the table. At first I thought maybe she had brought some books to loan me too but quickly learned otherwise. The first words out of her mouth as I begin to sip my hot chocolate were..."Gina, I invited you here today to talk to you about a unique business opportunity..."

If you're still reading this, you have by now gotten the gist of how lonely and empty I had been feeling at this time in my life. How excited I was about this new friendship and all the possibilities it might hold. Take a moment to imagine how embarrassed and ashamed I felt when I realized what was really going on. She was a network marketer with a pyramid scheme. She saw me in that nail salon the previous day and thought she saw some potential dollar signs. $$$

My heart sank. I felt like a fool. I listened to her entire speech about her cure everything juice and how I could become a distributor for her company and find people to work under me. How I wouldn't even have to sell the health juice at all, I would make all my money from people signing up to be distributors. Money, yeah, like the money she was hoping to make off me. She even went in for the close/kill.

"Okay, Gina... Are you ready to take your income earning potential to the next level? Write me a check right now, this moment and you will be taking the first step to a new life..."

Deep Breath. I wonder how many sales people there are in hell? Hey, I am just wondering.

I smiled, told her I was happy with my current business (lie) and handed her the book I had promised to loan her before making my escape.

Oddly, I wasn't as depressed after this as you might assume. Instead I was angry. I took the whole experience and pressed it tight. I formed it into a brick that I had every intention of using to continue the wall around my emotions.

Luckily, things didn't end up as badly as they felt like they were going those first few months in this new town. But on lonely nights, when I am walking to push back the worries, I remember moments like this one. I believe it is important to work through our pain. To connect with each other and to learn from our mistakes. We may make new mistakes or even the same ones more than once but we must press on.

Please share one of your experiences with loneliness here in the comments. If you were able to resolve the issue tell us how or what you learned. If you are stuck in a bad situation, tell us about it, someone reading this might have just what you need to hear.

In parting, take an enormous breath in, let it fill you to your toes... Hold it in, 1...2....3...4...5...6...7...8...9...10. Very slowly let it out, shaking your hands and fingers at the end. Repeat this a few more times.

You are where you are because of the choices you have made.
Want a different life, make different choices. Good decisions feel good when you think about them and great when you make them. If your stuck, ask for help.

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Whoa Momma!

Wow, the time went by awful fast.

Yes, I know all new parents say that. They say it because it is TRUE. Time is relative and children speed it up. My daughter was born May 14th. We named her Athena.

I have been spending much time thinking about generating some income in a way I feel confident. I am pretty new to web design and though I do enjoy sprucing up someones site and making them happy with it, I have so much to learn that I feel continuously daunted. Blogging could be a good way to make some money. I have to think on topics.

I made a new friend on Twitter recently who blogs about blogging. Find me on Twitter if you like. His name is Sarge and he has been very inspiring to me so far. And to think, my first impression of him was that he must be a bot of some kind. I was new to Twitter (still am) and he followed me awful quickly. But his blogs are informative and he has emailed me even more ideas. Check him out at or Great, now I sound like a bot.

Some ideas for blogs that I have so far are:

Just rambling on about my life and personal musings. (yeah, I am doing that one now)

Cloth Diapering (I have become a diaper nerd recently, making them myself and washing them at home)

Loneliness (I know, sad topic but one I know quite a bit about.)

How cute and squishy my little daughters bum is. (Perhaps too obscure but damn is her butt cute)

My experiences with random people in grocery stores (Yes, I lead a dull life)

The many reasons why Phillip K Dick scares me (...)

Social Anxiety (Oh, you thought I was just shy. You're too kind!)

Well, I am running out of steam here for ideas. Writing about what I might want to write about. I suppose it's better than thinking about writing about thinking about writing.

I know I am a good writer when I set my mind to it. Once upon a time on Myspace, before my life exploded, I had a zillion hits on my blogs all the time. I never harnessed that power and then because of one little bit of Myspace drama I deleted that account and all the followers I had accumulated.

Would you believe I almost miss drama sometimes. Wait, no, I really don't.

I would like to leave you with this thought to keep you warm tonight (or today if you happen to be in a vastly different time zone)

This moment is perfect, it is everything it is supposed to be. You have enough time and energy to do anything (and everything) you desire to do. Take a deep breath in while tensing your body and hold it as long as you comfortably can. As you exhale, release the tension from your body. You are in the right place. There is no where else you need to be right now. Just here, breathing and reading my words.

Go with peace!

Saturday, January 31, 2009

Making Progress

Well, I did it.
I created a Blogger account, finally.

I am so accustomed to my usual networking programs that I never thought I would see this day. But... Here I am. I have big plans too.

For starters, I bought a planner this year. Yeah, yeah, but I really mean to use it this time. It is a nice one. Genuine faux Italian leather. (It actually boasted that on the inside cover!) I bought it with a gift card I received for my birthday too. Money well spent.

I have been pretty good at writing in it so far. Recording all my prenatal appointments and meetings with potential website clients. I even spend a fair amount of time recording errands I got around to after I have already done them. Errands that were not on my to do list in the first place. I do this because then I get to look back on all these full days and feel more accomplished.

There is just one thing I have not gotten around to using it for yet. Um, unfortunately, this "one thing" is the useful intended purpose of the planner. Day after day, I forget to open it and check on what I have scheduled for myself. Don't get me wrong, it is still a bit of fun, working with this planner. It just hasn't made me a more organized, reliable person yet. But I am not giving up.

I vow, from this day forward, wait... I should start tomorrow, for a fresh beginning. OK, I vow, starting tomorrow morning, to check my planner first thing in the morning, every morning from now on. Perhaps, in the evening, I can blog here for a bit and then write down all my to-dos in my planner to be checked out the next day.

Yes, I can do this. I am a firm believer that if I do at least one thing, every day, in the direction of my ultimate long term goals, I will eventually get there. If doing nothing every day for all these years has gotten me nowhere, it is only logical to think that... Something = Somewhere!

But I jest, I am somewhere, just not quite there... Where I want to be, not yet.

I am however, MAKING PROGRESS!

More on this tomorrow... I promise (hopefully) And, perhaps I'll introduce myself too.