Archives for posts with tag: change

I finally wrote in my journal yesterday for the first time in a long while. I’ve been wanting to mark a few events, so that I can come back and remember. The thoughts feel quick in my mind—as though a quick sketch with words.

July. It’s been a year since my Uncle’s passing; it’s been a year since I decided to apply for a County job. I would not have been able to do it without the support of my old boss because it wouldn’t have been possible to even go through the process without having a job. Everything takes so much time. I remember almost not applying because I doubted myself, but then I thought that I had nothing to lose. I would then be surprised a month later when I received the invitation to move onto the next step of taking the test; after which, more time, another call, an interview, and the offer. I was elated. It took roughly three months to go through the whole process. July also marks the ending of my 9-month probationary period; next Monday, I should be declared a permanent employee. I like my job, I really do, but…

I like to look at the County job board because I’m curious and because—I don’t know. Well, I’ve seen library jobs, but those that I’ve seen require a bachelor’s degree, which I do not possess. Over the weekend, I saw another library job that was an entry level position, but I don’t have the required experience. I have the customer service experience, just not in a library setting, which they want. I have the love of books. I am tempted to apply without the 100% requirements. Would I be able to state my case, my love of books, libraries, learning…I don’t know. Is it worth it? Nothing to lose. I won’t know unless I try. Why do I keep looking?

It’s strange to be moving along, content, I like the work—mostly; the customer service aspect is my favorite part. It’s been a reality check in the sense that I’ve been working a part-time schedule for the past ten years—somehow it worked. My migraines made me nervous, not knowing if I could work an eight hour schedule again. Now I’ve been introduced to a 9/80 schedule, which means you work 44 hours one week, then 36 hours the next. All 9 hour days, except for every other Monday off, and 8 hours the alternating Monday. I must say my body has had to adjust—that extra hour is felt; however, having an extra day off is a nice perk.

July also marks my birthday month.

I have some thinking to do or maybe I’m just making things more complicated than they need to be. If I apply for this position, I’ll treat it the same way. Apply, then leave it to chance—to the Universe. Knowing that, what is meant to be, will be.

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It often boggles my mind, especially when I’m in the midst of it, of how much stuff a human being accumulates. I cross this road again and again, as I try to stay ahead of the stuff, to get into a practice of continual “spring cleaning” mode, but here I am, faced with it straight on.

We are downsizing, and are in money saving mode, and rents continue to rise at an astonishing pace. Thus, we are moving in with the in-laws. We contemplated buying a small storage unit for the overflow; right now though, it makes more sense to let go, to fit everything that we truly need into one room with a few things that can go into the garage.

The sad thing is that most of the stuff is mine. How has hubby managed to not accumulate so much, while all I see is piles that belong to me. I’ve taken things off the shelves, out of cubby boxes, discovering items I haven’t used in the time we’ve been here. 

A copy of a book from the library finally became available (I was on the hold list). The timing couldn’t have been more perfect. The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up: The Japanese Art of Decluttering and Organizing by Marie Kondo. As I browsed through the pages, I hung on her advice to discard first, then get to the organizing. This will have better results and I’m less likely to fall back on clutter mode. It makes so much sense. And do it swiftly. That’s the problem; I leave the piles, taking my sweet time. But there is true motivation and urgency. We’ve given notice, so we have a timeline. I have to make this a reality.

When I was sorting through my journals, I let go of a few and I had to keep some. I know there are pages that I need to come back to and bring back to life. Others though, as I peeked in the pages had too much of the past and needed to be discarded. Sometimes, it’s necessary to move forward and also necessary to look back; it’s a fine balancing act. If certain things have had their time, their moment, and they no longer serve in the present, time to let them fly away into the wind.

Last week when I was packing up some books and other knick-knacks, the Death card fell out of the Tarot deck. How fitting it was: Transformation, change, letting go. So many little nudges telling me not to keep carting all of this stuff around, both physically and metaphorically.

The funny thing about all the things that I have is that I wouldn’t miss 75% of it if only I didn’t look. If  I could wave a magic wand willing it to disappear, I wouldn’t look back. I wouldn’t know what I missed. The moment I look at it, though, something happens; I think of all the reasons I need this or that; or many of the items are so small, that just looking at them together, it’s overwhelming. It’s like an episode of Hoarders.

I have made good progress and need to speed things along. I’ve gotten rid of things, treasures that will now become other people’s treasures or possibly their clutter. It’s such a cycle, isn’t it?

I feel better coming to the page, as I usually do. I’ve missed the page and have imagined, dreamt of the page, my journal blog.

Here’s to new beginnings and clutter cleaning, both inside and out.

365 days of passing
This tree
The same
Yet different

The boss in on vacation,
enveloped by the warm humidity of Vietnam.

We receive the call from the buyer’s assistant.
The deal has been closed.
Texts back and forth to confirm.

Not much will change, or at least at the outset.

I look out through the window of his empty office,
in darkness, the only light coming from the outside.
I stand and look at the city covered in gray and white,
rain patterning down,
trees scattered along bare sidewalks,

As I look, I see there a bare tree with one lone leaf not its own,
caught in its branches,
holding it there until it blows away.

Dear Words,

I feel that our relationship is changing.

I want to read you more than I want to write you, but that’s not entirely true–it changes day by day, inch by inch.

Dear Words, you’ve been good to me; you’ve been there when I needed you most. We’ve been good to each other. You’ve helped me see myself, brought me close to my mother, allowed me to bring my thoughts and feelings to life, to give them a voice.

Change is a doubled edged sword–pardon the cliche, dear Words.

In some ways, I’ve gone back into my little shell, keeping you closed inside but not entirely and–my solace found more and more, more even than before–in the stories in those books that I’ve come back to, new ones I’ve entered.

Oh, dear Words! How good it feels to talk with you–I know you’ll always understand. I know you will know what I don’t and that even though our relationship may change and keep changing, it will still be there–alive–to nourish us. All we have to do is write.

**

Because…there is a certain comfort…because even as I think this and write this, already we have changed. Change. Change, Change!

The same and different.

This morning felt like a good day to pick a Tarot card, to pick a card to provide some insight or inspiration in general, not necessarily for myself alone, but possibly for other wandering souls.

The card that showed up was Death – XIII Trumps

The essence of this card seems to be captured in the following introductory quote for this card from The Tarot Handbook: Practical Applications of Ancient Visual Symbols by Angeles Arrien. I use the Aleister Crowley Thoth Tarot deck.

“The Death/Rebirth symbol represents the universal principal of detachment and release. It is through letting go that we are able to give birth to new forms. Cutting through old binding patterns allows us to let go of the old and give birth to new or unexpressed parts of ourselves.”

This is something that I would venture to say that most of us know to be true on some level, but why is it so difficult to put into practice?

I look to this card and can see where I may be in the process; and there, again, I see that even in writing about it, my words are tentative.

I find the card itself to be a source of light…

Death himself–a skeleton,
working his scythe, clearing the
way, making way for new growth–
transformation.

Unfold your wings and
Rise!

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Yoga has been calling my name. This morning I listened. I was wiped out last night–for what reason, I cannot say. I never understand when my body becomes heavy with exhaustion and the only thing I can attribute the feeling to is mental exhaustion, but even then, there isn’t much.

I’ve noticed that my right shoulder and the area right where it connects, has lost some range of motion. I’m sure it has to do with that being my dominant mousing arm at work and the position that my desk and chair force me into. For years my work chair has been horribly uncomfortable and I have wanted a new chair, but how do you really properly find a new, ergonomic chair, that fits your body, without sitting in all of them?

Office stores don’t usually have dozens of chairs to sit in and I once did find a chair that looked good in the picture, and the description said all the right things, but when I got the chair it was more uncomfortable than the one that I started with, the one I still sit in.

Sometimes it’s uncomfortable to sit, so I stand awkwardly above my desk. I’ve thought about how I can make my work area a standing station. It’s hard to imagine it with the space I have. My right wrist has also been showing signs–repetitive motion, etc. It motivates me to want to do more Yoga, to use the 2 pound weights I recently bought with good intentions. I’ve only picked them up a few times. I did use them today after Yoga, which was a positive sign.

I had a dream last night. I was at the Relax the Back store searching for work chairs. I went to that store years ago and was pleased at the offerings. They even had petite sized chairs. The cost, though, was at least twice or three times as much as a regular chair.

This is the year for a new chair or a makeshift stand up station. This is one change I need to make.

I can feel my skin, loosening itself, releasing the old scripts, releasing what is not working and plunging in as though it were the first day of my birth. I am thinking of an old friend—may he rest in peace—an old friend whose passion was snakes. He was a snake breeder.

And it is now that I think of the many beautiful reptiles that I laid my eyes upon. Looking in on a new batch of corn snakes, I was reminded of different flavors of pale ice cream. Some of the Mexican snakes were bold black, orange, and yellow of different stripes and patterns. The California king snake stunned me with its black and white stripes; and I always had a soft spot for the western hog nosed snake with its upturned front, which made it appear to have a snout. It is a shorter snake with slightly thick body compared to other slender snakes.

He and I had a strained relationship. We had been lovers and friends and back again. In the end we realized we could only be friends, and at times I was like one of the guys in our escapades. Our friendship trailed off, though. I never had an opportunity to properly say goodbye. I’ve never been good at goodbyes. I’ve exhibited this in jobs, in relationships, and during difficult times. It’s a part of my nature, a sensitive soul that can appear like a rock on the outside—a soul that can retreat without much notice—a need to go away and never look back.

**

Lately, the image of a snake shedding its skin enters her consciousness. She realizes that she is feeling this shedding within herself. She sees the opaque covering, as it gently loosens to reveal a new fresh skin.

She feels at peace. She knows she had many ups and downs with her old friend of late and she knows that even though they drifted apart, they still shared pieces of time that remain. She always does things in her own way that is not always understood by others, but she must do what she must.

Her old friend comes to her mind of course because if not for him, she wouldn’t think of snakes in quite the same way.

She remembers a time when she decided to go with him to a snake show, where many other snake breeders would take their goods and sell them to the interested buyer. One container had a small batch of freshly hatched snakes. She cannot recall the breed, but they were a bit feisty. She took a snake out to show a buyer and the little devil bit her. It didn’t hurt and she didn’t bleed. It was like a pinprick.

Snakes are beautiful creatures. Their skin is smooth and cool to the touch, not slimy in the least bit. They slither along—one long muscle, effortless. I imagine it may seem cruel to keep a snake in captivity and perhaps there is some truth to this—to contain a creature that is used to having a vast amount of space, who then is confined to a small container. I wonder how the snakes feel about this. Since they are bred into captivity, does this lessen the desire to wander—or does the instinct come into force and take over?

She is experiencing the shedding of old skin…and she knows she can keep this image by her side as the coming months close in. She will take it month by month and wriggle out of her skin—remembering the cycle and not fighting it, continuing to embrace the change.

I’ve always admired people that have what I do not. In this case, total self-confidence. I do have self-confidence in certain situations, but it is not a constant flow. I know that sometimes people may portray this air about them, yet they are not as confident as they seem.

What comes to mind is a boss from long ago. She was originally from Sri Lanka and I will always remember and admire her self-confidence and entrepreneurial spirit. She pushed forward even if there was doubt. If she didn’t know something, she would tell a client, “sure, we can do that,” even if she wasn’t absolutely sure what the program was, and she would quickly either find a way to do it herself or because of the business she ran—computer training for corporations—she would find a person who knew how. She had enough confidence in her abilities to know that if she didn’t have a solution right then, she would surely figure it out in time.

There are so many people that have emigrated here to the United States, who followed the spirit of this land and it amazes me how they did it. They leave their countries, come here with practically nothing but a vision and desire and make it happen. And then there are some people that have been living in this land of opportunity that have become used to the gifts of the land or who have no reason to break new ground and quite possibly forget how lucky they are to live in such a free country. Of course, there are also those of this country who have that same entrepreneurial sprit. We have seen many come and go.

I admire this spirit and cheer for those who are successful.

My co-worker just asked me yesterday if I had heard back from the folks—entrepreneurs—that I interviewed for. I said that I had not and that the interview went well and I followed up with a thank you email and that they would be in touch one way or the other. I said that it could be a while. They had several applicants for the open positions and they would not have a need for a couple of months. They were being proactive for upcoming business. I also admire proactive people. I am one myself.

Later that evening, coincidentally, I received a call and it was one of the owners of the company calling back to say they had narrowed the interviewed applicants down to a few and that I was in that pool. The next step would be reference and background checks and then they would make their final decision. I admit, that yet again, I have had a few of those heart to heart conversations with God. I wasn’t asking for the job, only asking that he continue to guide me in the proper direction, that, yes, I would like to have this job. It would be an opportunity to learn, branch out while keeping my other part-time position. More than anything, the learning opportunity and being more productive is most attractive to me right now.

I’ve thought upon the changes by deciding to work full-time again by having two part-time positions. I have searched throughout the years, but I didn’t want to be hasty. I didn’t want a regular full-time position with one company, and I wanted to be sure I found a company that I felt good working for. This feels like the one. I will be ever so happy if I am offered the position and if not, I will be glad to have gone through the process, since it had been long since I had.

The biggest change if I get offered the position is I will have less time for reading and writing. In a way, though, I have done a lot of both over these years. I’ve had the time by choice and I feel satisfied and happy about that. I am ready. Ready to move on to a new chapter. Reading and writing will always be there. They always have been.

The entrepreneurial spirit seems an essential ingredient in writing for publication. Eventually the published writer, depending on their situation, will be in a position where they have to sell themselves. That’s the part I don’t care much for. One of the things I’m beginning to feel from participating in the writer’s group is a real excitement for witnessing one of the first of the group to see one of their larger works to publication. A few are working on novellas and a few of us are working on smaller pieces. I’m enjoying the process more than anything. Of course it would be nice to see one little essay or one short story of my own published, but that goal has been overtaken with the joy of the process itself and seeing others succeed. In a way, I already feel published—if that makes any sense. As I said, I feel a sense of satisfaction and closure, and knowing that I may have less time to spend writing, may actually catapult me and focus me forward. It may even give a kick to my creativity.

I feel that I’ve been writing since I was born and of course that’s not possible. But, being so introspective, being a quiet child who lived an interior life—in that sense it feels that I wrote as a ghost writing in the sky. And I was also written onto by my surroundings. I struggled in school, especially writing between junior high through my first year of community college. I really couldn’t write proper sentences and had trouble getting my thoughts out. I always want to remember this because it is such a gift to myself that I didn’t give up and that I still write and express myself in ways I would never have imagined. That means everything to me. That can never be taken from me.

I do not have a true entrepreneurial spirit, but I admire it in others. I applaud and cheer for those of you out there!

With each small risk or new adventure, no matter the size, I do gain self-confidence. But I do not forget where I’ve come from, and that allows me to maintain some sense of balance and compassion toward my fellow human beings and myself.