Wednesday, May 26, 2010

i see a tiny light. like a flashbulb sparkle in the night.

after work tuesday night, i got to thinking about something. well, truth is, i'm always thinking about something, but here's what i had on my mind specifically.

as a nurse, you do a lot of unpleasant, sometimes hurtful things to and for your patients in order for them to feel better. for instance, tuesday night, i put a ng tube down for a patient who was having abdominal issues (ng tube = a tube that, basically, goes up the nose, down the back of the throat and into the stomach to drain the stomach of, well, yucky stuff). this patient had been feeling awful, but almost immediately after the tube was inserted and in place - a simple, yet significant, procedure - the patient began to feel better. there was this sense of sudden relief.

this got me thinking of something else (besides the fact that i spend way too much of my time in my head). it got me thinking of one of my favorite quotes - a sea of flowers won't bloom without the rain.

the last week or two, i've been in this kind of funk. i still have yet to figure out why, but i guess it is what it is. and, since things have been so great lately, it seemed even harder to be feeling "down" for a while. i wasn't used to it, and i hadn't felt that way in a long time. yesterday, though, something was different. it was like a weight had been lifted. and it only took a few small, yet significant, things for me to start feeling better - to have that same sense of sudden relief i mentioned before.

i've talked about what the above quote means to me in other entries before - that, sometimes, you have to go through the bad to get to the good. lately, i've realized, you can think of the quote in one of two ways - one, the bad days are there for a reason - to remind us that, no matter what, better days are ahead, to make us appreciate the better days; and two, the good days are there for a reason as well - to remind us of how far we have come, to give us a chance to look back and learn from the bad.

to me, seems like, no matter how bad you're feeling, feeling better and better days are always just around the corner. i'm more and more thankful every day that the better days largely outnumber the bad and to know that the simplest things can turn a bad day good. it's a blessed life and i'm happy to be here.

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

not far, but near, i stood and saw it all.

naive by nature, full of second chances and unquestioning trust
gentle hands that forever fiddle in silence with their best intentions
and eyes and ears that both listen with focused consideration
i'm happy to have inherited these things from you
sharing secrets as our feet splashed through the summer seas
stories of your childhood, your wedding day and the years you kept inside
stories only known to you and me
as your mind misplaces memories, i'll keep them secure in mine
the simplest of things that make your eyes light up in wonder -
i see them in a different way myself now, with new-found appreciation
you've taught me how to slow down, to look around
i learned that from watching you as you take it all in, piece by piece
i see the love between you and him, fifty years in the making
and the way you still look at each other, smile at one another
it makes me wish for something so sincere, something so lasting
i've watched as your hands have taken care, have taken hold
i've watched as your eyes watch over, full of thought and sincerity
without a negative thought in mind, you forever smile
i've known you for twenty-five years
from the times when you would rock me to sleep
to the times lately when we sit and talk and laugh, when we share
and i'm happy to be able to call you my friend, my grandmaw

Thursday, May 20, 2010

all this sunlight feels warm on my face today.

thursday reflections. sharing 10 thoughts of the week.

1. in high school, i hated to read. until i read to kill a mockingbird in 10th grade. the first book i ever actually enjoyed reading. what am i reading right now? the last song.

2. i'm thinking this was one of my favorite weeks at work yet. i got the chance to do and see things i never have before, and i consider that an opportunity. plus, we were actually fully staffed tuesday night (hey, one night out of three is better than nothing). sad what i get excited about as a nurse.

3. pretty excited about this as well.. top chef comes back next month. love that show.

4. tomorrow night is ladies night at the glazed bisque-it. can't wait to go paint.

5. beautiful photography..

6. reminds me of today..

7. sometimes, they play "catch my disease" by ben lee at the end of our classes at the gym. go listen. just a little happy for you.

8. i think i've baked about five red velvet cakes this year for one reason or another. little known secret.. i'm always tempted to use blue food coloring instead of red.

9. just saw something on tv about moulin rouge. i've seen this movie about 100 times, but it's a movie musical, and it's ewan mcgregor. what more do you need?

10. thursdays are always full of laughter. looking forward to the rest of today.

Sunday, May 16, 2010

you got a piece of me, but it's just a little piece of me.

i was only barely breathing
for a moment passing by
but the endless days gone scattered
mattered nothing when i thought to ask why

there were nights when eyes saw nothing else
when the signs of forever still teased your heart
expecting more than something to remember
waiting for time to play its healing part

trapped inside a memory's holding
feeling this had taken all that was mine
looking back, now knowing
they were only moments, not a lifetime

slowly learning the difference
as i walk on with lessons on my mind
it was a piece of me, not all of me
that purposefully got left behind

Thursday, May 13, 2010

half of my heart has got a real good imagination.

thursday reflections. sharing 10 thoughts of the week.

1. it has been a cloudy, rainy week and i love it. even had a little thunder and lightning.

2. this is a picture i found online a few days ago. i like the sparkle. shine.

3. i love teacups and bowls. i have these teacups (from pier 1) and bowls (from crate and barrel). i imagine an entire kitchen filled with beautiful things like this (one day).

4. the dennis quaid "skits" on ellen always make me laugh. find the newest one on you tube (dennis quaid + ellen + 2010). "i'm gonna skip home like a pretty pony.."

5. my fifth thought? your entries will be missed, michael. beautiful, moving writing, and i hope one day we'll get to hear more.

6. i came across a very creative blog this week. turns out, the writer paints and sells jewelry. i'm a sucker for a statement ring and ordered this one from her site.

7. goldfish crackers and the gilmore girls. becoming a part of my everyday afternoon.

8. music this week? i've mostly been listening to grace potter and the nocturnals (the band i found last week). also, fall out boy and taylor swift. namely "a little less sixteen candles.." and "breathe." pretty diverse collection o' music. rainy weeks like this also lend themselves to the counting crows.

9. i'm seriously considering buying a polaroid camera. i've been inspired by the following (notice the new title picture for the blog) and by pictures from i love finding beautiful pictures. i love finding beautiful quotes. they, like the counting crows and rainy afternoons, are even better together.

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

anytime it rains, she just feels a lot better.

paint it all a shade of grey
and there she'll happily stay
within the darkest of the night
see her there shinning bright
but she's all right
she'll be all right
as long as you turn off the light

and days that are found covered in rain
are what keep her this very way
finding peace within the downpours
only left her open heart wanting more
collecting raindrops within her hands
as she, on her own feet, begins to stand

she's one for counting clouds gone by
see her eyes kept on the sky?
waiting for the rain to fall
stand and watch; she'll watch it all
welcoming storms as they scatter
shinning light on all that now matters

commandment: dance in the rain (the first time this commandment has come up; now, i have written about all 13 of my commandments).

(my 50th entry. crazy. another slow night at the hospital equals a random poem for all of you to read).

Sunday, May 9, 2010

isn't it pretty to think so?

i'm not afraid of being hurt again. i can say that with a decent amount of certainty. what i am scared of is being made a fool out of again; being made to believe one thing when, in reality, an entirely different something is going on.

i'm a big girl. i think my heart is pretty strong. i can handle a lot more than you probably think.

just as sure as i don't know happiness when i find it and have it, i also don't know honesty when i see it anymore either. i question it. i expect it to be a lie. i don't believe it. it's like this continual "yeah, right" in my head.

there are a handful of people who i trust, genuinely trust, and really, that's okay with me.

i want to believe it - whatever it may be - but whatever allowed me to believe before is now gone almost entirely. scary how quickly things can change and how long it takes to get it back.

i've always been a fairly naive person, thinking this person could never do something like this or that and believing people can change. then, to my surprise (i was always genuinely surprised), something would happened to prove me wrong. i'm not trying to sound pessimistic here, and i don't consider myself to be a pessimist; just someone slowly shaking naivety.

i got so used to this "yeah, right" way of thinking that i'm having a hard time finding my way out of it. i don't want to think this way any longer. i'm not the kind of person who expects to be disappointed (although, i'll admit, it does make things easier); i'm not the type of person who doesn't trust people. and, yet, here i am, scared half to death with my guard up.

and what happens when you let your guard down, going along with things as they are presented to you (even if your gut knows better), only to find that, once again, you've been fooled? i'm not saying this has happened again, but what if it does? i'm not a stupid girl, but it's instances like this that have and would make me feel like one again, and i can't let that happen again.

so, keep yourself in constant motion; always moving, never settling; eyes straight ahead but focused on the here and now; expecting the unexpected and never allowing yourself to be too surprised or caught off guard; otherwise, be warned. and i've been warned. hell, i've warned myself. i'm just hoping to one day find my way back, or to find my way to, that kind of childlike faith i used to have - the kind that never questioned, never thought twice, and always believed.

commandment: leave the lights on.

Saturday, May 8, 2010

i always wonder what's on the other side of the number two door.

it's 5 am on a saturday morning. i can't tell you the last time i was awake at this time on a saturday. the reason i'm awake now? work. two more hours to go. it has been an unusually slow night, and i thought i would write with the spare time that i have.

slow nights like this don't come around very often. when they do, it gives me a lot of time to think. too much time, actually. as a worrier/over-thinker - well, let's just say, the less time to think, the better. i've learned this over the years. quiet nights are my enemy. ha. you'd be amazed at what all runs through my head. maybe more amazing that that - whenever i'm asked, "what are you thinking?," my mind, which was just filled with hundreds of thoughts, goes completely blank. it's weird, i know this.

it's funny to me - my job as a nurse is so technical and clinical, and as a person, i find myself to be more on the creative side, very into writing and photography and music and dance. sometimes i wonder how i ended up in nursing. why am i at a computer charting on patients when i could be at a computer writing creatively? just a thought. one of the many i've had tonight. i've shared a secret regarding these very thoughts with one of you, and while i rarely hold back in these entries, i think i'll keep my secret this time - at least between this friend and me and at least for now.

all of you reading this - are you doing what you really want to be doing? do you question sometimes why you do what you do? if you could have one job for the rest of your life, what would it be? i'd love to hear from you all.

why do i always feel i'm on this continual search for something else? i wonder, if and when i fall into something just right, will i then be able to completely settle into it? am i thinking about this too much? probably. does anything ever feel 100 percent right? all i know is, if you never question things - whatever they may be - you may never find what you're really looking for.

commandment: listen to yourself.

Thursday, May 6, 2010

it's nice today. the wait was so worth it.

thursday reflections. a new idea i had. sharing 10 thoughts of the week.
1. one idea i had lately - take more pictures. okay, so, i've always taken lots of pictures, but mostly of family and friends. this is different. here's a picture i took downtown wednesday afternoon. there's something about it that i just liked, especially the colors.

2. i can't figure out why there is no fourth floor in the hospital; the "4" button on the elevator doesn't exist.

3. i came across this picture online this week and loved it (as well as the quote). if you can't see it, it says, "sometimes someone says something so small and it just fits right into this empty place in your heart."

4. i think it's funny, and a little pathetic, that the first and only time i've ever been hit in my life involved a blow to the head this week by my 86-year old patient.

5. i found this - - this week. neat site.

6. mark my word, in the next couple months, i will have a tattoo.

7. the following are finds of the week (for a bedroom in progress).

8. i get really excited about finding new music and bands. i heard this band called grace potter and the nocturnals on ellen the other day for the first time. good stuff. go to you tube and look up their newest single, "tiny light" (i can't get a link to work here).

9. today is national nurses day. national nurses week runs today through the 12th, so find your favorite nurse and give her a hug.

10. great news? conan o'brien will be back on tv in the fall. a late-night show on tbs. so excited.

commandment: share from your heart.

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

so say, what are you waiting for? kiss her, kiss her.

we all complain. i know i've had my moments. but i've always felt, if you're unhappy, do something about it; fix it; change it until you are happy. others have disagreed with me in the past. they tend to ride things out, all the while miserable, waiting to see if it's going to get better. more often than not, their complaining continues and they become more miserable as time goes on. and nothing ever really changes. all so, at the end of the day, they can say they, at least, stuck with it.

so, which is better? stay miserable just for the sake of sticking it out or go with your gut and try and do something that might actually make you happy?

i know there are some out there who have come to me with complaints, and many times my response has been, "so, do something about it." i don't mean to sound uncaring. it's not that at all. in fact, it's the opposite. because i care, i don't want to see this person or that person stuck in something that makes them unhappy and it frustrates me when people knowingly continue doing something that only makes them more and more miserable. most of the time, if and when i say, "do something about it," the response is always, "it's not that easy." my question is - why not? usually, there are hundreds of reasons. money seems to be a common one. but, at the end of the day, if you're miserable, you're miserable, and until you make some kind of change (if you really want to, that is), nothing will ever change.

to me, it's pretty simple. do what makes you happy. my family and friends have always said the same thing - do what you need to do to be happy. end of story. and i feel very blessed to be surrounded by this kind of support and this kind of thinking. i know that that support and thinking are reasons it is so easy for me to just do what makes me happy - because they are there all along the way, unconditionally.

so, what makes it so hard to change - to go after what you really want and what will ultimately lead you to happiness? seriously, i want reasons here, people. ha.

people fall into routines, i think. i also think that there are those among us who, after failed attempt after failed attempt, tend to stick with something because this particular something might come easier to them than other things they have tried in the past and there is less, if any, chance of failing at this particular something. to me, though, just because there's less of a chance at failing, and less of a chance of disappointed, that doesn't necessarily mean there's more of a chance at being happier. in fact, if you're not willing to put yourself out there - in one way or another - there's very little, if any, chance of finding that kind of happiness.

it has been my experience that if something is bad from the beginning, if something doesn't feel right all along, it probably is never going to be right - no matter how much you try and stick with it. and maybe this is just me. but the things that are right seem easier or, even if they're challenging, they seem like they're leading you in the right direction. there's a feeling involved; that gut instinct. and, even though i've gone against my gut at times, giving people and situations the benefit of the doubt and multiple chances, my initial instinct is rarely wrong and, eventually, i find myself on the other end of it - whatever it may be - finding another way to happiness.

i've known people who seem to become almost comfortable in their miserableness. and, frankly, i don't get it. well, i do get it, actually. staying miserable is easier. you're less likely to put yourself out there, to try something new; you're less likely to get hurt or to be disappointed. i get it but i don't get it. why continue doing the same things day in and day out that only seem to contribute more and more to your unhappiness if you know, that with a little effort and change (okay, maybe a lot of effort and change), you could be happy?

i think i felt bad for feeling happy at one point. i think i felt i had to feel bad for a certain amount of time and that it was wrong to feel anything other than sadness in the early stages of the fall-out. one day, i realized, i didn't have to feel bad about it - nothing said i had to - and there was no sense in being miserable if i didn't actually feel miserable. and there is certainly no sense in staying down if you know there are ways to get up.

so, i got up; i made changes; and i'm still making them today ("get right to the heart of matters..")

can you tell this is a bit of a sore subject for me? well, i don't know if i'd call it that. but it's definitely something i hold close at heart (for reasons i choose not to share here). i'll end with this. if you're not happy where you are, if you're not happy doing what you're doing, do something about it. it's scary. it's unpredictable. it's risky. but - i know this now - it's worth it.

commandments: live the life you want; listen to yourself.

Saturday, May 1, 2010

sometimes we don't notice just how good it can get.

part one: finding and recognizing happiness.

there's this episode of sex and the city (stick with me) in which carrie finds herself happy, finally happy, but not knowing what to do with it. great job. great friends. great life all in all. everything was in place but something still seemed off. what was it? turns out, carrie was new to this kind of living; new to being settled and happy. the problem? there was none; she was looking for something to be wrong because, for years, something was always off.

the other day, i got to thinking about that particular episode. actually, i was thinking of where i am in my life right now, and that episode came to mind. i can honestly say i'm happy, and for most of my life, i've generally been happy. for one reason or another, though, i've always continued looking for something else, something more, no matter how happy i am.

thanks to my near-recent past, i'm afraid i've gotten into a certain kind of mindset - looking for something to be wrong; waiting for something to go wrong; and never really settling in to happiness. i realized lately that nothing is wrong - no matter how much i expect it to be. great job. great friends and family. great life all in all. and the only "problem" has become my continual subconscious search for something gone bad.

there were a few days last week when i felt out of it; kind of in this funk. but, try as i might, i could never quite put my finger on what was wrong and why i was feeling that way. thinking back, i realize now that nothing really was wrong. i expected myself to be unhappy (because, long story short, it was a challenging weekend last weekend) and, because of it, i found myself unhappy those particular days. but, when i really thought about it, i wasn't all that unhappy; in fact, i was okay. i just hadn't expected myself to be.

john mayer has a song called "something's missing" that talks about the same things i've mentioned before - having nice things and great people in your life but feeling as if something is still not quite right (okay, i know i've referenced sex and the city and john mayer in the same entry but just go with it). i'm blessed enough to know that something is not missing; this i know. in fact, i told a friend the other day that i wouldn't change anything about my life right now, and i mean that sincerely. the key, though, is making my heart and mind really believe it and getting out of that mindset that something has to be missing. nothing is missing. i feel that way now.

i have sense enough to know that just because the last five or six years involved a constant strain and wait, that doesn't necessarily mean the next five or six years (or twenty or thirty) have to be this way. it takes some time to get used to, though, i admit, and i'm a bit on the slow side when it comes to change. the good news, though, is that i do feel a changing, and i am able to recognize how happy i am in each moment as it passes. i no longer feel as if i'm waiting for something to go wrong or searching for something else; i know that everything and everyone that is here is meant to be here and i'm happy, really happy, with what i have, with what i'm blessed with.

part two: finding and recognizing my own happiness on my own.

i hate to admit this now, but for years, i relied on my once-significant other for a large part of my own happiness. i hear songs now with lyrics that say something like, "i can't breathe without you," or "i don't know who to be without you around," and it makes me a little sick. know why? because i used to be that way and feel that way, and now that i've snapped out of it (my oh, snap! moment), and when i think about how i used to be, i can't help but shake my head in disbelief. where did i go? and why did i rely so heavily on him for my happiness? for myself? when you do that, and when it's gone, you do lose pieces of yourself - big pieces of yourself - because of how much of yourself you put in him. and finding your way back, finding your way back to your own happiness, is twice as hard - you've not only got to find it again; you now have to find it on your own.

this all seemed scary to me at first; nowadays, it's almost exciting knowing that my happiness is entirely up to me. and i don't have to look hard to find it anymore - it's all around me.

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