Saturday, March 31, 2012

Self-hating Saturday

When I played a sport or worked toward a degree I remember being told that one has to do it for oneself, not for someone else. It's logical then to conclude that it is unacceptable to be living for someone else and not for yourself.

Friday, March 30, 2012


 OK, this is just a rambling, somewhat incoherent stream of consciousness that is probably not worth reading.  I'm not going to re-read it tonight anyway.  But it's what I've got.  It's probably whiny.  I won't feel bad if you don't read it.

I just finished reading The Hunger Games, Catching Fire, and Mockingjay (by Suzanne Collins) for the second time.  I didn't get enough sleep last night and spent a lot of time crying today, mirror neurons in overdrive, mourning the corruption of perfect love in one character.  I felt so stupid for being so affected by a person, a character, that's not even real.  But I was also crying for other reasons, I think.

Saturday, March 24, 2012

Post-movie Let Down

I enjoyed my alone time watching the IMAX Hunger Games movie here in Columbia, MD. It was a good movie. Of course, I wanted to see so much more than made it into the finished film. I left feeling old, fat, and out-of-shape. I can, and really do need to do something about that. Then I went to Starbucks and had a chai and a piece of pumpkin bread, which seemed like extreme indulgence after life in District 12 or trying to stay alive while being hunted in the woods.

I did some people-watching, with the old fashioned school fire alarm bell and organ music of the mall carousel leaking in through the open entrance of the store. Everyone seems to be so beautiful in their own way. It's weird. They all seem precious somehow,

Thursday, March 22, 2012

Sleepless in Crofton
I have been having trouble sleeping lately.  If I wait too long to go to sleep, my husband falls asleep first and snores continually.  Not loudly, but enough that I can't go to sleep, so I go sleep on the comfy couch downstairs. Because of this, I've had heartburn since Monday (my bed is jacked up at the head end to combat my acid reflux).  It's late so I need to try to get to sleep now.

But, I just wanted to mention that last night I was down on the couch trying to think of a book plot idea that I hadn't read or seen done already.  Really tough to do!  There was an interview on WHYY's Fresh Air by the author of a new book on creativity and how it works.  Turns out, as I think we mostly knew, that you are the most creative when you are relaxed.  Bonus: being depressed helps too!  Anyway, I finally had an idea, then today I haven't been able to remember it.  Sigh.  Maybe I'll dream about it tonight.

Wordless Wednesday: Being Obsessed is Annoying

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

I'm not anal, I'm detail-oriented.

Why have I found only ONE other person in the entire internet who has questioned why The Hunger Games' mockingjay token used on the cover art and movie has an arrow?! There is no arrow in any of the descriptions of the pin or mockingjay symbol in any of the books.  Also, the jay is only supposed to be held to the circle by its wingtips, vs. wingtips, tail, and arrow.  The Hunger Games' cover art could be incorporating the arrow because it's a better design choice or makes a more stable brooch in actuality or to represent Katniss in particular or whatever, I don't care.  But I'd think some teenage rabid fan would be ranting about this discrepancy.

I don't want/need it changed. I just want to see it acknowledged! Arrghh!

Get thee to a spa! Julie turns 40.

I turned 40 today.  It's kind of freaking me out.  Still, it was a good day.  My kids gave me that book by William J. Broad, The Science of Yoga, and a Tardis cookie jar (which is just awesome because it makes that whooshing sound every time you get a cookie, so it's alarmed to foil the kiddies), and my husband gave me a 3-treatment package day at a local spa.  Whee!

Julie's Top 10 Take-home Points on the Spa Experience

1.  You know you need relaxation when you are stressing out during the drive to your spa treatment because you don't know what it will be like or if you'll relax enough or do things right, etc.  I did this today and my husband laughed at me.  This happens a lot.  One of the strengths of our marriage is that he finds me amusing.

2.  Going to a good spa is something you must do before you die.  My birthday present today included

Sunday, March 18, 2012

"And I'm going to be 40....some day!"*
I have made it to the night before my 40th birthday.
The kids are asleep, and my husband is asleep in there with them.
The dog is eating dinner. <crunch crunch slurp slurp crunch>

I am cross-legged on my bed with my laptop, an old teddy bear of mine, my sleeping/snuggling blanket (that my mom gave me) and a white furry bunny "tummy time" blanket that looks like a bear rug only it's a bunny.  I couldn't bear to give it away.  (Story forthcoming.)

If you are in the habit of checking here, you have noticed that I was not writing much this past week or two.  I've not been functioning all that highly.

Friday, March 16, 2012

Such a fat-assed waste + UPDATED: Wise Woman

I wrote this entry on March 16, 2012.  Today is the 18th.  I am going to go through this and write in responses that I imagine come from the "wise woman" within me.  (These will be in blue italics.)  This is a technique that my group therapist came up with, herself.  To me, I imagine my wise woman to be myself, only older, perhaps at the end of my life, with all the wisdom of having lived through the life I am struggling with right now.  The key is not to give advice, but to be accepting and present with the feelings of your present self, to soothe and comfort yourself as you might a good friend or young child.  I find it comforting to do.  This can also be done with drawings, where you draw one drawing about something you are struggling with.  Then with a different color or pen or whatever, you see what the wise woman would add or change about the picture.  It can be very interesting.

I have been upset this evening about turning 40 on Monday (I can see how that might be an intimidating milestone for you) and not being able to feel acceptable. (That must have been pretty rough, huh?) My husband took the day off (How nice of him!) and I stayed in bed until 4 or so as if it were a Saturday. (Maybe he felt good to be able to give you some extra rest.) 

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

I had a breakthrough today at my counseling session. I made some connections that I had not realized before, regarding 2 of my issues: the napping-in-the-car-thing and my negative feelings about growing-up.

I was telling my counselor how in my group session last night we had decided that the nap-thing was not necessarily all about sleep, but more about feeling safe.  I feel safe in my car, lying back and passively listening to the radio or music or sometimes just the wind and birds.   I get to feeling safe and soothed and then sleep follows. Today I realized that when asked the last time i felt safe, my brain goes first to a prominent memory of taking a nap in my bedroom in South Carolina in 1975 or so.

Monday, March 12, 2012

The Hunger Games

I picked up a paperback copy of The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins today and was able to do nothing else until I finished it a moment ago.  It was completely consuming.  There were no lags, no slow patches, it was riveting from start to finish.  I just saw the trailer for the motion picture version on Friday when we went to see John Carter.  Now I definitely need to see this.  I'm a sucker for a post-apocalyptic survival story, and this ranks up there with The Stand for me (Stephen King) although obviously not quite on such an epic scale.  Though it looks like there are two other books, so I'll be looking for them soon.  Maybe not tomorrow, as I probably need to get something done for the household.

I ate this weekend like there was no tomorrow.  This has got to stop.  Maybe the survival side of this can inspire me to be more fit?  We'll see.  Off to bed now.  Tomorrow morning is going to seem awfully early.

Sunday, March 11, 2012

Public Service Announcement: DST Starts Today. Hide!

Don't forget to have someone else set all your clocks ahead an hour if you are in the US.  Then hide under the covers until Tuesday.  All those not living with this insanity, carry on.

Saturday, March 10, 2012

Just a Touch of Social Phobia

Composite from Lowell's book Mars as the Abode of
Life as per
As when I have read other engrossing works of science fiction, I am utterly amazed at the human imagination after seeing the movie John Carter.  According to my husband, this movie stems from a novel written in 1912.  I have not read it, so I don't know how much what was portrayed in the movie is artistic license and how much was from the original novel, but still, given the state of knowledge about the planet Mars at that time and the perception that the lines seen on the planet in telescopes might be great canals of lost or existing civilizations and how the author just took that and ran with it is just astonishingly impressive to me.  Moving cities, solar-powered flying machines, organic-seeming machines powered by some "9th ray" of the sun, the management of civilizations by another species with technology more advanced than we have even now...  I wonder if my mind could be as fertile.  So far it has not, but creating fiction has not yet become a passion, nor might it ever.  Who knows?

Anyway, what follows are some of my thoughts from earlier in the day,

Thursday, March 8, 2012

A Bucket Full of Holes

Forest Encounter
As the white noise of the warm wind, blowing in strong gusts through the treetops, wafts through my open window, it is sprinkled with silvery dimes of sound from my bedragled backyard wind chimes.  A lone spring peeper chirps to itself, although I may be able to hear a faint chorus behind it when the wind dies down... yes, I think so.  They must be down the block, further in the common forested area of our townhouse development.  Yes, there they are.  They are a bit early this year it seems, but as you may know if you're from around here, we've had an unusually warm winter and March came in like a lamb wrapped in cotton.  It was in the mid 70s (F) here today.  We have daffodils already.  It's ridiculous.

That aside, I do have a serious purpose here:  confession.

Wordless Wednesday: Crystal Renn

(Although apparently now she's lost weight again and people are upset!)

Monday, March 5, 2012

Sometimes I am rude.
"I haffa go potty!  I haffa go potty!" my son says loudly in Friendly's Restaurant tonight.  "OK, let's go."  My husband whisks him off to the men's room  My daughter is coloring and hedging in on my territory again.  She likes to sit as close to me as possible, leaning on me if she can, while sticking both elbows out away from her when we sit together in a booth.  It drives me crazy.  I think it must be because when I was growing up we each had individual swivel chairs (four) around a table so that there was only one person to a side and no chance of touching.  When I am in a place to eat, I have discovered that I do not like to be leaned on, snuggled, climbed over, or to have a small head thrust up under my elbow and arm as if my child were an anxious dog.  My daughter is unable to sit next to me and not do all of these things in the course of dinner.  I've tried to explain to her that I love her very much but that mommy just needs some space when she eats, but it has yet to stick.

Sunday, March 4, 2012

Pigs, Rainbows, and the Invisible Gun

I don't really want to write tonight.  My molar hurts and I don't know if it's one of the ones I know needs to be worked-on or not.  I refuse to deal with it or acknowledge it.  I want to stay lying on my stomach in my daughter's pinkly-lit room on her bed, next to her, with my little son on the makeshift trundle on my right.  I want to lie with the beginning chapters of Charlotte's Web on my mind, dimly remembering playing on and under the unfinished basement steps of my childhood, pretending to be Templeton, the rat, after watching the cartoon special.  In those days, you could see between the steps and children could play in the space under them, in the

Friday, March 2, 2012

It's only money.
Yesterday (Thursday) was dentist day at my house (coincidentially, and more humorously, Glennon of the Momastery blog had her kids at the dentist yesterday too).  I scheduled all four of us to come in as successive appointments.  My three-year-old had his teeth looked at for the first time. No cavities. My husband never has cavities. I have decay on two teeth: one will require a crown replacement, the other they can do as a filling, they think. So there's a few thousand dollars to find.

Thursday, March 1, 2012

Wordless Wednesday: A February Moon's Halo

NASA Astronomy Picture of the Day Feb 11, 2012

Vomiting meds is not helpful.

Getty Images
I am assuming that I am feeling the fall-out from being so sick Sunday night and having vomited my meds and effectively skipped them for a night.  I took it easy Monday and didn't judge myself too harshly for it.  But yesterday was not good.  My husband got my daughter to school and I got my son off to daycare.  As usual, he did not want me to leave him there and he clung to me.  Luckily, a teacher was able to entice him to play soccer and he gave me three kisses goodbye and I was able to leave the playground without a scene.  As soon as I walked back into his classroom (I had to go back through the building to get out) the tears started.  I looked out the window and saw all the kids playing and the grown-ups taking care of them and wished that I could go out and be one of them.