personal responsibility…

Or lack thereof, as it were. I remember growing up and being instructed that for each right we claim, there is an attached responsibility that goes along with it. Yin/Yang, Sun and Moon, falling down and getting up. Opposite forces… get it? =) There was literally NO POINT in which the adults in my life stopped, looked around, and said “Ok, I’m here, now I can rest on my laurels.” Apparently, they were a dying breed and as I gaze at the confusion and pain around me, I realize how few people hold themselves to the standards that were imposed upon my childhood self, and that I happily impose upon myself today.

I will never be the rock resting in the sun, happy in mossy contemplation. Instead, I am a wave, constant motion and planning to get to the next shore. It is not good or bad, it simply IS.

I received an email today from a professor who is too sick over the election results to come to class. Of course, The Fates being the utter bitches that they are, this is after I spent 3 HOURS yesterday preparing for class today. Yes, 3 HOURS!! I did not leave material for the last minute, but you know how those Tues/Thurs lectures go… one can become swamped by a professor’s bright idea. SO… I prepared myself, took the requisite 2 pages annotations (both sides of course), read the book in its entirety,created study questions, entered the day’s work into my “grade book,” created the rubric… list goes on.

Get up this morning, PING… this professor will not be in attendance this morning. I still have to show up, check in with the TA, and then work on the group project. The one we were supposed to start NEXT WEEK. The one that concerns a book none of us has even OPENED, let alone READ. This will be a very productive two hours, I am thinking… sighs in frustration.

This leads me back around to the theme​ of personal responsibility. While I can understand disgust for the electoral process, I do not think this is a reason for him to check out for the day. I pay a LOT of money for this​ “free” education I am getting, and if I need to be prepared, can’t​ we ask the same of someone making $125,000. per annum?

There are approximately a million things on my to-do list before Spring, 2020. That is when I graduate with the double MA and SEC Ed Cert. 3 years and a semester. Half-way there. Perhaps, as a very unmotivated person once whined to me, I should not hold others to my high standard. I argue that perhaps we could all put on our big girl panties and face the day, no matter how daunting the prospect. “Embrace the Suck” for all us ex-military types. “Just Do It” for all you runners out there. You get my drift…

Lest you think I am an unfeeling wench, I CAN sympathize with his plight. I simply cannot afford, mentally or realistically, to take time to grieve for what might have been. I decided to stay up late, work hard, maintain my GPA, contribute to the class in a meaningful way, and accomplish my goals. This, in turn, helps my entire group forge ahead, as we ALL decided to do what we were tasked with. Perhaps discounted college costs are my RIGHT for serving my country. But my RESPONSIBILITY is to show up, do my best, and make something of myself with all those tax dollars I (and you) have invested over the years. I owe it to myself (and my future students) to get the best possible education and be the best instructor I can be. Will​ I have a need for sick days in my future? Of course. I only hope that I choose to use them sparingly, and not on days when my students are counting on me to navigate them thru tricky​ waters of my own creation.

Go be your best today. That may not be your all-time best, but aim for the BEST you can manage​ today. If someone is counting on you, show up. If someone needs you, be present for them. I realize humans learn through trial and error, but we only have one life in our current form. Make today count. If not for yourself, for those around you. We do impact everything around us, like that proverbial butterfly. Go be excellent! The smile on your​ face at the end of the day will be reward enough. If not, treat yourself to some ice cream. “Just Do It” says Nike. I agree.

Hatred Cannot Be Our Answer…

In the early hours of November 9th 2016 Donald Trump won the 2016 Election and become President Elect of the United States of America. If you are looking for details of that story, you have come to…

Source: Hatred Cannot Be Our Answer…

unable to even…

I could not care less about this man’s hair. His orange spray tan is inconsequential. That braying, derisive laugh? Not on my mind…

BUT… I am bothered by the hatred that America, in part, embraced. I am bothered by the fact that a strong and confident, caring First Lady who tried for 8 consecutive years to make a safer and healthier country for our kids is being replaced by a fashion model. One who will do nothing to uplift her husband, the new leader of our precious country. I am bothered that this leader’s default setting is not respectful introspection, but full on tantrum-throwing. And that he now has access to our launch codes. That this leader thinks it is all in good fun to threaten sexual assault on any woman he deems worthy enough…

HOW did we get here? We lost the collective US and focused instead on personal agendas, the very thing we scream at the parties for doing. Instead of uniting to become the greatest and strongest pool of people on the planet, we allowed emotion to get in the way of the issues. Some of us simply didn’t vote, because after all, “we live in a blue state, so whatever.” We allowed our passion for our guns to override common decency. We decided that helping others is not important, but he who can collect the most and keep it is king. We decided screaming is more important that discussion. We decided that it is not just acceptable, but reasonable to want someone else to die or be forcibly removed from within our borders so we can perhaps grasp a bit more of the pie​ for ourselves, to be eaten in the dark by the fistful, of course.

The irony is that most of you reading this voted against this hatred. Am I, therefore, accusing you all of not standing and fighting for what we collectively believe would create a better tomorrow… not perfect by any means, but better than today? Not by a long shot, peeps. We are finally reaping​ what our country has been sowing, and the crop is terrifying to this old gal in the Big Wood.

Do not despair, do not give up, do not feel as if it is over. It is just beginning. This is NOT about a woman in office, this is NOT about party lines, this is NOT about all the bullshit we have been spoonfed. This IS about change,a time of growth that will be painful​, especially​ knowing what we are growing into is not what we would like to be. So what now?

Declaration, communication, education. Cultivate, enlighten​. Strengthen and persevere. But not while screaming, accusing, demeaning. Time to take it back. Do what ancient civilizations and great leaders alike know to be effective. Do it softly, persistently. Speak softly and carry a big stick. If we whisper, they must lean in to hear. If we smile, the burden passes to them. The only way a maligned group rises is through tactical genius and biding their time until that final, bloody campaign. Now is not the time. Checkmate is not possible on the first move. So we must careful consider our strategy, bide our time, stun them with our ability to hold onto grace and peace. I know this is miserably hard for we have been fighting so long, so hard, uphill all the way, and are exhausted by the fight, but know we cannot stop. This is not the time to fight. Slow down and heal. Think what you can offer “the cause,” be it canvassing, educating, listening, creating safe spaces, whatever. You know your​ talents, you know what resides in your​ heart. THINK. BE STILL AND THINK. Then breathe, and then, consider carefully your​ next step. The only strength here is in numbers, so we must do everything in our power to ensure when this cycle begins again in 3 years(but it has already begun)we are amassed.

Loving-kindness and peace, light and love be with you all today. This is not giving up on who you are and in what you believe. This is regrouping. This is smart. And this is the only way we will get through this day without becoming a screaming, incoherent mess similar to the one who now wears the crown.
​​

the reset button…

It was a no good, really awful, bad day in Little house in the Big Wood. Nervous pacing, financial strain, Uni trouble, the death of a classmate, transfer applications, phone meeting with the tax man and scholarship committee…

Frazzled does not even begin to describe yours truly. More like Bill the Cat dancing in a drug-induced haze while in flames. Seriously. My day did not go well.

After breathing my way through anxiety that had me shaking like a leaf, I remembered something that Hubby No More told me. He was cautioning me not to “press the reset button just yet.” I know that in most instances, emotional or knee-jerk responses are contraindicated when trying to make the best decision. But as I mulled this over for a while, I began inexplicably to calm. Running away is not a real option. Or is it…?

“Running away” sounds so juvenile, how about we say instead “relocate?” Would it be so bad to stop fighting and let the tide carry me down south? Sure, it would mean at least a year out of school to establish residence. Sure, I would​ lose a considerable number of credits in the transfer. ​​Sure, it would set me back by 4 years total. Sure, it would​ necessitate breaking it off with the man I love. Sure, it will cost at least thrice what I would​ pay up here. BUT…

It really and for true is the reset button. And now that I see it over there, under the shiny glass bubble, can I persevere and NOT flick up the top and satisfyingly smash my palm down? Push the button or struggle ahead? They both entail a LOT of change, uncomfortable growth, and no small amount of “But I don’t want to…” Of course, what decision in life is nothing but candy floss and sunshine?

I guess what it really boils down to is this: Do I want to start over alone but dependent on family in a place of unlimited growth, or do I stay and fight harder than ever before to hold onto the place I have earned here, standing beside Paul?

Sounds silly, but I would never want to be the one to turn the key and activate nuclear launch codes. Greater people than I have stood at this precipice, wavering with uncertainty in a similar fashion. The trouble is that this is life, MY life, and there are limited do-overs. This is one of those defining moments, and by all that is holy, I do not want to deal with the ramifications of either choice today…

haiku…

Tuesday looms ahead,
Park, walk, vote, hurry straight away…
Exercise your right!

I know, way too formulaic and without a shred of creativity, but brain being utilized now with research pertaining to environmental history; not much else left in there.

I will not presume to tell anyone how to vote. I will not presume to know the path best for this country. I will not presume that I could do a better, or more inclusive, job. BUT… I will say that the citizens of this country have not only rights but responsibilities. I will say that even when we want to hide under the bed until December and hope this was all a bad hallucination, we are RESPONSIBLE for maintaining our current government until such time as we see fit to COLLECTIVELY change the status quo. I will say that if you hate the candidates PERSONALLY so very much, perhaps try to separate​ them from their stance on the issues. Make a spreadsheet, circle those opinions which align with your​ own, tally up the circles, and vote for that candidate. FORGET party lines, personalities, crude remarks, questionable attire, smiles that seem too sincere, or not sincere enough. THINK about what is important to you and yours. THINK of what you hold most dear, and how to either maintain or improve upon it. THEN… if you STILL cannot find a way to get yourself​ to the voting booth, understand that opting out is not an answer, and it might be time for you to put your money where your mouth is. To advocate for change, run for office, support third-party candidates… the list goes on. But by all that is holy and for fuck’s sake, peeps, DO SOMETHING! Because sitting on the couch in your pajamas, eating cheese curls and flinging them at the television in disgust while whining is simply NOT going to create a nation anyone wants to inhabit. Love to everyone, and much respect. Please remember your voice this coming Tuesday, and take one second to be thankful that while we live somewhere imperfect and broken, we STILL have a chance to create a better tomorrow. Namaste!

day 1…

Ok, actually, day 3, but I do not think anyone is counting. Or if they are, they are probably counting hours until we get an extra hour of sleep​ this Sunday, and not about my piddly little blog here. =)

I am in the process of setting up a new account for my school adventures (read: fkn kill me moments)and cannot figure out how to post an “about” page, or get anything to stick. WordPress​ used to be easier. Sighs pitifully.

At any rate, good news to report. I was dreading my group peer review Thursday morning, during which I thought I would have my ass shredded and summarily handed back to me. Surprisingly, after many midnight fits of typing, and many apologies to my team, my research was welcomed with open arms, and I was praised​. WTF just happened…?

Fast forward to today, moments ago. Sitting here, surrounded by my research packets, pages of notes, and a second computer with around 37 open windows, I go thru, line by line, and realize there are far fewer errors that I anticipated. Utilizing the formulaic approach my professor insists upon is a pain in my ass, to be sure. It limits my perspective, stifles my creativity, and does not blend well with my style or expressing myself. But… she may be on to something​.

I have some​ revisions to improve the flow toward another point I want to include. I need to format my Works Cited page. I need to remove any dangling modifiers or misplaced​ semicolons with the real thing, but all in all, things are looking pretty good.

In other news, Alice’s words must have reached the powers that be, as I am finally on the mend and can breathe. Mostly. Time to focus on death and maths. Which are interchangeable​ in my mind, truth be told. I feel quite grown up and proper now that I am focusing on my career here. Ooh… career. =) Nanaste, peeps, old and new. Have a lovely!

true story…

2 inhalers, 2 antibiotics, a shot, steroids, and a medicated gargle. After 5 days of sick, Nyquil-induced, hallucinating-but-mostly-sleepless nights, had 2 Dr. appointments, blood work, and a chest x-ray, leading to the list that began this post. Just so you know I am really sick, and not just taking a day off to bask in the sun…

Emailed a professor to ask for a 24-hour extension on ONE of the papers due in her class this week.  Got a terse “no, but thanks for asking” reply, and was told if she had been “in bed” all week, she certainly would have had time to not only finish paper but email copies to and from the peer review group to which I belong…

Am going to assume the following:

  1. She is an ass.
  2. She has never had simultaneous bronchitis, sinus infection, full body rash due to allergy to first antibiotic.
  3. She has never spent 2 days shaking from the inhalers and steroids, trying to keep car on road without maiming beast or human…
  4. She has never checked out http://www.ratemyprofesor.com

That is all, for I have a paper to write. 2 years down, 3 1/2 to go. Pray for me.

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