Magic and Miracles in 2016

Magic and Miracles in 2016

Happy Thanksgiving to all and to all a good night!

I love Thanksgiving, but this post isn’t about that. It is about my new best friend. So, I guess it is about Thanksgiving because I’m giving thanks for a wonderful year.

Last year was a little rough on me. I had a divorce, homelessness, an emergency room visit, a car break down, three surgeries, and that’s not even the end of it.Don’t get me wrong, last year was good too, I was a completely different person by the end. Different enough to recognize my beautiful new husband a few days after we met. But I’ll get to that in a minute.

At the beginning of 2016 I wrote a post called, The Greatest Love Story, about how my relationship with men and writing seemed to parallel each other. I thought if I figured one out, the other one would fall into place. Not that I was fighting really hard to figure them out. I felt a little lost with both of them. I don’t know how many times over the years I wanted to get rid of both of them, thinking: “Maybe I’m not really a writer. Maybe I’d be happier alone.”

And yet the love and the writing kept coming back to me. Being single felt like a cop-out. It is too easy to be strong, happy, and independent as an individual, but as a couple, next to a man…I hadn’t yet learned to be strong happy and independent when another person was involved, especially the all-powerful male.

I didn’t know how to be connected but independent; caring without losing myself, agreeable without sacrificing myself. I didn’t know how to be good to myself without stomping on him, or be good to him without losing myself. And besides all that, even if I did figure that out, how would I know if we were compatible? I tended to like everyone, but what would hold up in the long run. I had no idea, but after the roller coaster of last year, I had opened up to magic and miracles, so I was certain I would find everything I was looking for.

Well, my happy marriage miracle did happen. I met and married my husband in 16 days last February. While we were both scared and nervous at first, over the months we have found our way and are happier and more content with each passing day. We have both learned to care for ourselves without steamrolling the other, and care for each other without losing ourselves. It is a beautiful thing. So, there you have it; the man thing is finally figured out.

Now about the writing; as hard as I tried over the years, I couldn’t get it to come out properly, but it also wouldn’t leave me alone. As I navigated the beginnings of my marriage, I was still unable to navigate my writing.

Then a few days ago, another miracle occurred. Several days ago I watched a Woody Allen documentary. He sat down to his desk and talked about his typewriter. He said he had been using that typewriter since he was 19 years old and it would probably outlive him.

I thought about this typewriter, and while I am not one to rush out and try all the writer rituals (because I believe they should come naturally), I remembered typing a book when I was fourteen years old. Even though we had a computer, I went down to my dad’s office and wrote an entire book on that IBM. In comparison, I have written out many books by hand, but when it comes to transcribing them onto the computer, I don’t finish. With the typewriter, I finished.

I stewed over this for a day then ran out and got my own handy dandy typewriter.

My new best friend.

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I’m happy to be here, I swear

You probably know this isn’t a perky blog. Well, today I’m feeling even less perky than usual. So the question is: What do I wear and how do I blog when I’m feeling so under the snuff?

We’re about to find out.

Despite feeling groggy and bleh today, here I am dressed and facing the world, or at least the dentist, with my very unperky energy.

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That is my numb-after-dentist face.

Maybe this blog should be called: What to wear when you want to be naked.

Leggings again, and because they are the semi-see-through ones, I wore little shorts underneath. Giant mint sweater with cowl neck. The light gray shoes connect the top and bottom of my outfit. Pale and pale. And once again, top-knot and no makeup.

So there it is, comfortable, low-maintenance and pregnancy approved. Oh, that’s right. I’m pregnant. I guess I haven’t told you yet. It’s a boy. Pregnancy makes this whole fashion thing much harder.

Next week: what to wear when you keep getting bigger. Spoiler alert! The answer probably has to do with leggings (but maybe I’ll surprise you again).

P.S. One of these days you will see me wearing makeup and looking a little happier to be here, but only if it’s genuine. This blog is about honesty and if I honestly don’t feel like wearing makeup or smiling, dadgummit! I won’t wear makeup or smile. (But I would look seriously freaky if I smiled in this picture. Dentist Face!)

P.P.S. Anyway, I guess that’s all for today. But seriously, even though I’m unperky, I am really enjoying being here. Maybe this blog soothes me. Maybe I’m healing from my desire to hide and things are really changing for me. Wow…this is kind of exciting. Maybe you will witness my chrysalis emergence, along with my swelling stomach.

Stay tuned…

Feeling Sort of Beautiful Today

Well hello, fellow philosophers; so we meet again on this fine feathered day.

Since my last post I have had a bit of a journey. Perhaps I will tell you about it, or perhaps I will begin somewhere else. There is so much to say, how do I begin? I suppose first I will start with this:

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That’s me. Today. This blog is about fashion and healing (and other stuff too). When I started this blog, I thought I would be motivated to get myself all gussied up because I would be taking a picture of myself every day. Instead, I just quit blogging.

The problem is that some days I don’t want to get all gussied up. Some days makeup feels messy instead of beautiful. Some days comfort is more important than fashion. Some days wearing clothes feels like a chore. And that is just part of the package of life.

The question is: how do I embrace these days and still go into the world without feeling like a slob?

So let me dissect my outfit for you.

I am wearing a large, loose super-comfy shirt with navy leggings and gray ballet flats. I look like my outfit took some effort, while staying one step away from pajamas. I had on a navy cardigan earlier today, but now that I’m relaxing at home, I threw on my periwinkle hoodie. Both are really comfortable and go with the outfit, one just has a more casual vibe than the other.

As for the hair, the top knot is always a low-maintenance favorite. I like to keep mine a little wild while others might like a neater, smoother bun, either one is quick and easy.

With a pair of earrings and a bracelet or two, I would look a little dressier and still not have to wear makeup. And yeah, this is my makeup free face. Some days my face just wants a wet wash cloth swept over it to feel fresh and beautiful.

So this brings me to my point:

As women, it is important for us to feel beautiful. Sometimes we think we will acheive this with more makeup, or a smaller dress size, or better clothes, or having more money, or getting more men to fall in love with us, or whatever our thing may be, when in reality, feeling beautiful is simply a feeling. We can choose it or not choose it and it doesn’t matter if anyone agrees with us or not.Beauty is a feeling that has nothing to do with what we look like.

Which brings me to my second point:

But before I get to my second point, let me tell you about a little journey I took since we last met.

I knew I wanted to feel beautiful, but that proved to be more difficult than just deciding to feel beautiful.

As I tried embracing my beauty, I found my pathway blocked by a fearful little girl. She didn’t want to be seen or noticed. Feeling beautiful meant coming out of hiding, and she wanted to stay hidden. I had to face her and hold her and ask her what she was so afraid of. I could explain this process to you but it would be tedious and dull and that’s not what I’m doing on here anyway.

The Hollywood ending to this story would be that I emerged from all of this like a phoenix from the flames, glowing like the north star. But this isn’t Hollywood, nor is this the ending. This journey has uncovered layers. I have healed myself enough to come somewhat out of hiding (hence the ability to blog again) but I haven’t cleared all the layers yet. I still don’t hold that constant feeling of beauty in my heart the way I want. But I’m working toward it.

I’ll keep you updated.

I wouldn’t blame you if you ran from this blog and never returned 

On my last day at my last job, my boss said, “My wife and I were talking about you last night. We were saying that since you have worked here you have undergone a complete metamorphosis. Inside and out, your life has completely changed. Like you were a seed when you got here and now you’ve sprouted up out of the ground. You even look completely different. I like to think maybe this company had something to do with that.” 

I nodded. Everything he said was true. I had changed, which changed my life. And yes, that job had a lot to do with that growth. I said as much, but I faltered in conveying my gratitude. 

I began that job, my dream job, living in salt lake with my husband, Mr sapphire cat. Every morning I drove thirty minutes south to Lehi to write clothing descriptions for a company I admired. I worked hard at my clothing choices. I worked hard at getting people to like me, and I worked hard at life. 

As time passed, I became aware that life could be much easier than I was making it. My clothing choices should reflect my mood rather than my desire to impress others. I spent lots of time and energy trying to control what other people thought of me; even what I thought of myself. There were certain things I did and did not approve of myself doing; certain things I should be ashamed of. 

While it would be impossible to relate all the ways my job, my coworkers, my friends, family, and other internal and external factors contributed to all the changes that occured over twelve months, let me just say that everything in my life, esspecially my job, conspired to change my life. 

When I walked out of Dressing Your Truth for the last time, I was living in Sandy with my new husband Monsieur Jones. I had shrunk ten pant sizes. I had dread locks. My clothing style was much more consolidated and comfortable and me.  And for the first time in my life I knew what my long term goals were. 

For the first time in my life I was discovering the real me instead of trying to dictate an idea of me to myself. Life is easier now, I must confess. But it’s a journey of discovery. For example, I noticed the other day when I laughed really hard at a joke of Monsieur Jones’, I felt embarrassed, like I was out of control and needed to apologize for my crazy laughter. 

He liked my laughter, and I liked laughing, why apologize for that? But I felt ashamed of myself, even though I didn’t want to be. 

Of course this is an innocent story. I have plenty of other less innocent things I can feel ashamed of, but I don’t think shame is fruitful no matter what it’s about. What do we hope to accomplish by holding onto shame? Whatever your answer might be to that question, I feel that it’s just a way of hurting ourselves and keeping ourselves stuck. I used to see value in shame and guilt, keeping myself in line and humble and all that stuff, but I don’t believe that anymore. 

And I can’t be certain, but I’m pretty sure that God doesn’t see value in shame and guilt either. Oh yeah, I guess this would be a good time to tell you that if you dislike conversations about God, I recommend you running far from this blog and never returning. 

I like God a lot. We’re buddies. We hang out. I like talking to him and about him. If that makes you uncomfortable, consider yourself duly warned, because he’ll show up again. (I’m working on being genuine, which means speaking honestly about what I think and feel, even when I’m afraid.)

Being wrong can feel so right

Being wrong can feel so right

Sheesh, maybe I will start serious blogging again. But don’t take that as gospel truth. I reserve the right to be wrong at any time. Being wrong takes a hit on the old ego, but it does wonders for my soul, and my soul is what this life stuff is all about anyway. I think I love my soul. Soul, I have missed you. Sorry for neglecting you for so long. 

So, for a minute, during my six month blogless sabatical, I thought about changing my blog theme. I have talked about fashion and dressing my truth and all that jazzy jazz. I even titled this blog fashion and healing because clothing is fun and important to me, and I always felt my healing journey would reflect in my clothing. I don’t know if that’s true, but it seemed like an interesting thing to document just in case. 

Along my fashion journey these last few months, I have discovered my own personal connection to being a blue fairy. Not that I’m overly interested in fairies or even fantasy, it’s just that I feel like a blue fairy. Life is not so serious or scary and I have a little magic in my fairy wings. 

When I made this realization I thought about reconfiguring my blog around my blue fairyness. But now that I’m back for real I recognize that I have more to say about fashion and healing than being a blue fairy. So I’m back to my original plan, fashion and healing. 

Anyway, blah blah blah. I guess I just thought I would say hi. So, hi.

Purple and blue dreads now. 

Coming Out of Hiding

Coming Out of Hiding

While I would like to pretend that these last few months we have been apart have been a beautifully relaxing sabatical of sunshine and daisies, only part of that is true. 

But before I tell you about these last few months, or even the last year, I would like to confess something I didn’t know when I took my leave of you.

As I said before, I have started and stopped many blogs over the years. Something kept me coming back but something else kept pushing me away. I always liked the idea of blogging, but not the reality of it. Why? I asked myself. What is chasing me away? Well, my friends, I just may have found the answer. 

I have spent my life hiding and blogging is visibility. But as a writer I can’t thrive without visibility. 

I could do a big cheer and say, “I’m coming out, baby! This time it’s for real. This time I’m a new woman and I’m ready to be seen.” But that might be a big lie. The consciousness is a new thing, but I’m not sure about the how or the why of hiding. All I know is I’m writing this blog now. 

It might be the first of many. It might just be the beginning of another bloggless sabatical. But I’m here now because my soul says blog. I like listening to my soul. 

We are getting to know each other lately, my soul and I, and it’s a beautiful thing. We’ve had an on and off relationship over the years. We talked a bit here and there and I always thought about stopping in and talking more, getting to know her better, but life is busy and she is not demanding, so I neglected our relationship. But things are different now, not that life is easier or my soul is louder, but through a series of events I have learned my soul knows so much more than my ego or any other part of me so I might as well listen. I’ve learned listening to my soul first instead of last saves a lot of time, because no matter how much we think we can ignore our souls they will always be heard in the end. 

So the question is, how does one hear ones soul? And when you do hear it, how do you recognize it? The answer is: I don’t know. The path is probably different for everyone. But who knows? I don’t pretend to be a teacher, I only relay my experiences and the people who hear can take it however they want. 

What I have been doing is just meditating and saying, “I am hearing my soul, I am.” After enough time I started hearing and recognizing the voice of my soul. I am still working on our relationship, but it’s definitely getting better. 

So, like I said, a lot has happened in the six/seven months we’ve had apart. Perhaps I’ll get to all of that eventually, but for now all I will say is: I have blue dread locks now. 


 

Naked Soul Sunday

Naked Soul Sunday

 

So much to say. I guess this will just be a really long post.

Here we are again, my friends. Really, I really have so much to say. Where do I start?

This blog was supposed to be about my personal healing journey and how my healing would manifest itself in my wardrobe choices, hence the picture of moi with every post. (I’m not sure if you knew that, but I’m telling you now. Fashion and healing and all that jazz.)

Anyway, I have done lots of healing since starting this blog. I have gotten lots of personal insight and made drastic changes in my life, not all of which have been documented here, but I liked the idea and the purpose of blogging and sharing my story with a big vague audience, who may or may not exist.

Has my wardrobe changed in this process? I’m not sure, I haven’t been paying much attention, and as you can see, I have looked pretty subpar in most of my photos. “Smile,” people say. Oh yeah, a smile. But it always feels strange to smile at a camera. I smile at living things, not machines.

Besides all that, I usually blog during pajama hours, so really the whole fashion thing has fallen by the wayside, but whatever. I didn’t start this blog with lofty goals in mind. I just wanted to do it, so I did. I wanted to write from a vulnerable place to a big vague audience, who may or may not exist. I probably had other purposes in mind, some conscious, some subconscious, but I can’t think of them now, and it probably doesn’t matter that much.

Perhaps I seem strange today. You might be thinking something is wrong and I cried in weepy tears over my morning bowl of oatmeal, and this blog is a vague cry for sympathy. But I don’t appreciate sympathy, so I don’t do anything with sympathy in mind.

(Seriously, please don’t give me sympathy, even if you think I deserve it. I really hate it. I don’t give it well, and I don’t take it well. Really, seriously. I mean it. No sympathy for this girl. Understanding is nice, sympathy is crap. I really hate it. I don’t think I can reiterate how much I dislike sympathy. Just. Don’t.)

So, what I was saying is that I may seem different, like something is wrong, but nothing is wrong, and I didn’t even eat oatmeal for breakfast. I ate a bratwurst with mustard, and it was delicious. So I wasn’t crying into my Wheaties like you might imagine. But I am strange today, I am feeling quiet, yet wholly myself. Which brings me to the whole purpose of this post.

I have done a lot of introspection and healing over the past three years, but most especially during the past few days.

I build things up and tear things down. Yes, I do. Yes, I do. This may seem like a terrible way to be. We build to have a finished product, then we sit on the porch drinking our iced tea, admiring our work, and feeling good that we are no longer building. But I enjoy the process of building and of tearing down. In this process I learn what is important to me. I notice my patterns and weaknesses. I see new paths open and understand which ones to follow, at least momentarily. So that is a pattern of mine.

During these past few days, I have seen my patterns more clearly than ever before, like the building up and tearing down thing. I have brought into question everything I thought I wanted in life. I have pulled all my patterns out of my backpack and set them out before me. As I look at them, I notice which ones are serving me and which ones are not.

I notice I live inside out. I have been too vulnerable to a big vague audience, who may or may not exist, and not vulnerable enough to those close to me. I have been spreading my naked soul around instead of keeping it centered and whole inside of me.

As I focus on healing more, and living with my soul centered inside of me, I realize this blog might not be serving me anymore. There, I said it, we are breaking up. I know this might be hard on you, but I have to do what is right for me, and this is right for me. I told you I was a builder up and a tearer downer, what made you think this would be any different? But with my soul centered and whole, I have no need of spreading it around on this blog. Sorry, I really did love you while it lasted. I hope it was as good for you as it was for me.

It might not actually be permanent. I’m not totally sure yet. And another thing, maybe it is time to sit on my porch with iced tea and enjoy my handy work instead of looking for the next thing to build up or tear down. Maybe it is valuable to embrace both ways; understanding that some things need to be torn down, while seeing that other things are better left standing. We shall see.

I am looking forward to seeing where all of this leads, but you, you big, vague audience who may or may not exist, you won’t be along for this journey. This is a journey of one. Naked Soul Sunday has just ended.

Thank you for coming with me thus far. I hope your own journey’s fare as beautifully as mine has.

Namaste.