A May Full of Memories


It’s just barely in to the month of May, and I have much anticipation and excitement for what will come. As I’ve mentioned in earlier posts, my occupational situation was less than satisfactory. Fortunately, during my hiatus from writing, I found a position where I am not only incredibly happy but very humbled and in awe that I am doing many of the things I’d longed for in a career – and I might add, had nearly abandoned in my quest for stable and sustainable employ.

I currently hold employment at a medical practice where I manage marketing and creative direction for the practice. Additionally, my employer is opening a new business, an art and event space at the Westside neighborhood in West Midtown Atlanta. Without elaborating and to keep some privacy, The new business has place me in a key position of networking and tutorship under some amazing mavens in the art world as well as the opportunity to work, side-by-side, with some brilliantly successful individual for whose talent and savoir-faire I am very thankful. This May will conclude my probationary standing with the company and also host my stepping aboard and going full-time salary with the company.

Outside of work and the necessities that support what makes life tick, I also have quite a bit planned on my social calendar. The first of my major plans this month that remain is a trip to Savannah with Chad. My first trip to this historical city was only a little more than six months ago when I went along with my dear friend, Keith, and celebrated my 28th birthday. That trip was good, but to be honest, the city and its rich architectural history, saturation of the arts and general romantic ambient feel made the experience slightly bittersweet that I was not spending it with someone special, that is, with Chad. I don’t expect that Savannah will offer the same rich charm, which I experienced the first time, but it will be a welcomed calm before the storm.

Which storm? The storm that has consumed my working and partially personal life: the annual company party that will be held at the new location. The invite list is nearly three times the amount typically invited and the guest roster ranges from employees to socialites in politics, the arts, and celebrities in all fields. The measure of success for this event will be largely based on the overall attendance, the guests’ reaction to presentation and the space as well as the fervor and energy rallied for the opening of our new project.

Last but not least is my trip with Chad to Mexico. What’s exciting about Mexico? Much unlike other people my age, Mexico was not the first destination I chose when I left the country or was it the second, third and so on. The force drawing us to Mexico is our, now mutual, friends’ wedding to be held in the Riviera Maya. Having not taken a trip together, we supposed this would be an excellent opportunity to share and experience a new part of the world. Our plan is to arrive a week before the whole wedding party arrives and tour the Yucatan peninsula, exploring both the culture of the Mayan and Mexican peoples, the history and ruins of each civilization and enjoying new experiences with each other. I am so grateful to have the opportunity to go especially after a – hopefully – rewarding month and hardwork.

I plan to have another post explaining our Mexican road trip at greater detail as a ‘preliminary report’. That is all for now…

It’s not all about me


Ever feel a little crazy?

 

If not, then lucky you.  I’m not sure that there was any one thing to blame for nearly absolutely losing my mind and lashing out. It’s an unfortunate situation when it happens, but it does. This morning, I woke up to an alarm I had errantly set for an hour earlier than I needed to wake, followed by incessant chatter from my roomates along with having fallen back asleep only to wake up late.

As a creature of habit, I tend to follow certain rites in the morning and among these are 1. checking my emails; 2. checking Facebook; 3. responding to each. There’s something to be said for those people who belong on Facebook and other social media sites/groups (e.g., Twitter) and for those who do not. Angry and hyperstressed people do not belong on these sites as they tend to act erratically and without thought.  This morning, I chose to take the crazy route. I call this, “Stepping into Psycho.”

My only quasi defense – as weak as it may be – would argue that I have been going without a governor at a helacious speed, stressed health, my work or lack thereof has mental gears grinding with not progress and my social network is in chaos with friends stuck in relationship messes, best friends coping with growing pains and boyfriend out-of-town – not to mention my car overheating today.

Stepping into Psycho can not only affect those around you, but it most certainly and assuredly affects most clost and dear to you. Today, I felt like I pulled down the walls of a damn and flooded those closest to me with fury totally misguided and ill-directed, along with poorly communicated. As with any storm after its havoc has been wrecked over its victims, the eerie calmness that pulls itself from the rubbish begins to look around, listen and wait. It waits for the commentary that will ensue its temper tantrum, the retalitory rhetoric that will fly and the tears, if any, that will fall. I wonder if a passing storm ever turns its head as it passes homes and cities whom it’s fury wrecked or if passes because that what storms do.

A friend of mine counseled me today, validating my feelings but rebuking my expressions thereof. It made me think of a bible verse I heard when I was younger: “He who guards his mouth and tongue keeps himself from calamity.” It’s a shame we remember these axioms after the atom bombs. Along the same lines, the same tongue by which we bless and kiss, love and woo, is the same by which we hate and slander.

Today was a ugly reminder to myself of how quickly I can allow the unrelated events of a moment pollute my vision and begin a domino effect into my day and of how challenging and important it is to step away from the affected and emotive variables of a situation in order to fruitfully and wholly address it because in the end, it isn’t all about me.

Timer


Wouldn’t it be amazing if we knew the direction of our lives? That is to say, if the hassle of knowing what one would study in university, where one would work, live, travel and whom we will love. At the present intersection of my traffic jammed life, I would offer much to know the answers to any one of these questions. The other day, I watched a film, whose trailer is below, titled, “Timer.”

Oona, the main character in the movie, is the type of person who wants everything planned in her life; her focus is narrow and anything or anyone not directly associated with her plan is quickly eschewed.

As the topic of this movie is love and finding one’s soulmate, which is eased with the timer, I can’t help but focus on the real life application. How many people date with the initial onset of, “Is this person my soulmate?” or “Is this just a fling?” My response to this is somewhat paradoxical – surely not every interest one has would result or even be a runner up for a soulmate, but shouldn’t it? I’ll agree partly with Oona in that why invest time in someone who isn’t for you?

Women more than men tend to think along these lines, that is, a woman’s goal tends to gravitate more toward the homemaking wheres as a man’s intentions may be a little broader albeit homemaking is included. Now, since I am neither a woman nor a man dating a woman, I can only speak on behalf of men, and more narrowly, gay men. Among these, I think there are two (basic) types: the nomads and the settlers. For the nomads, the quest for homemaking is mobile and within his self and his company but not necessarily in cohabitant sense; the settlers, on the other hand, find the home with another person, they are searching for their other half. Both types, however, still have a quest for love. Their methods are different just as their interpretation and expectations of it differ.

At one point of the movie, Oona is challenged about her ability to love someone without a timer. She is told, “It’s not that I can’t give you a gaurantee – it’s that you can’t give me one.” The gaurantees here differ: one is by an emotive promise and the other is through science.

So, if love is measurable by means of science, where does emotion factor? Expounding further on this thought, is love emotion or a series of chemicals – or both?

Another question postered in the film, was do we fall in love once or does it [can it] happen multiple times? Think for a moment on the nostalgic phrase, “My first love…” The simple linguistic presentation leads to a series of loves or lovers; there is a assumption being made that if you have one love another or others will follow. The film treats this question well: I won’t go into how, but it’s worth the watching to know.

Before I go on with “My first love” and exploring it in terms of myself, I think understanding love is important. It’s always of interest to me how others view love. I have highlighted and used repetitiously a quote from Wally Lamb in his book She’s come undone, where the main character in the book, Delores Prices, says,”He’s splitting me open, I thought. He’ll break me and then I’ll die.” Love or the moment preceeding the actualization of it nearly mimics the pain experienced by a bud before it blossoms; the fear is losing part of one’s self to another regardless of knowing of the reciprocation. As Zora Neale Hurston believes, “Love makes your soul crawl out from its hiding place.” It makes people do things in a bold manner and with superhero gusto one otherwise may not have.

Now, I ask myself, “Have I been in love?” I know that I have cared deeply for another in a way that made my heart break and stole my breath. I’ve felt his pains and shared his happiness, but what that love in the sense of a soulmate? I would say not. It may have chipped some of my ideals of love, but for whatever species of love it was, it fostered my expectation for love to be greater and stronger than before.

The ugly 9


First things first: I don’t believe or partake in new year resolutions.

Having said that, it happens to correspond with the new calendar year that I revist my First Strides to a Mean, Lean Machine Regime. My approach this time, however, will deviate somewhat from where I began some 16 months ago when I began that blog series; I now have more knowledge and, most importantly, better goals and tools to succeed.

One complication, which I face when “dieting”, is diabetes. I’ve had diabetes, type 1, for nearly 20 years. Paradoxically, similar to Diabetes, Type 2, is that although i regulate the disease with diet and exercise, I cannot control solely it by those means as is the case with Type 2. Without delving much into the complications of diabetes, my primary obstacle with many diets, namely low carb, is the need for balancing carbs with insulin. Whereas a non-diabetic will regulate and metabolize his/her sugar (and carbohydrates) naturally, I must account for any carbs I ingest with an insulin injection.

As type 2 diabetics typically reach their hyperglycemic status as a result of poor eating and exercising habits, i.e., by high demands on the pancreas for insulin, a type 1 diabetic can do the same – the difference, however, is more frequent injections. In short, eating poorly and exercising deficiently not only make me fat but a masochist for injections! Weird.

Near the end of last April, I began working at a bakery. At this time, I was heavily involved in boxing and maintaining a strict diet. At the time, I weighed in at 148 and was securely physically and cardiovascularly fit. Sadly, the eight months that followed carried a burden along with them: a single pound for each month to be exact. Perhaps it was my boyfriend’s leaving the country, other people’s comments on losing weight, or the fact that my underwear was a little too snug one morning that encouraged my considering approaching the diet once more.

Now, before I proceed any further with this talk of “diet”, I think that it is important to eschew from the malopropism of ‘diet’ to adjustment. Diets have the reputation for temporary fixes. My goal here is to return to eating well and healthily – although getting there, will require work much similar to a diet.

Goal

The transition avenue I have chosen is high proteins and low carbs husbanded with habitual exercise. Initially, I am avoiding the sweets from the bakery as they are readily available and delicious, but still very bad. (I do, however, plan on feasting on a cupcake once I am closer to my goals and proportionally consume.) At the onset of this weight watershed, I weighed in at 156lbs with an approximate  13.6% body fat (BF). More disturbing than bumping bellies when offering hugs or not seeing my shoes (I jest) is knowing that 13.6% BF is probably the toughest to rid oneself of. Obscene.

As with all people hoping to lose weight or change habits, each person’s goals are vastly different. I don’t want to say that I want to be ‘skinny’ or ‘high-school skinny’; rather I want more concrete and measurable goals to work toward. They are surely weight loss but muscle gain and body transformation. Attaining these goals, I hope to reach below 10% BF. With working out and gaining muscle, I forsee my losing approximately 9lbs would ensure my goal attainment.

Evoke the gods


I’m a fool, maybe even a glutton, for romance novels. It may be my lack of experience with romance or my misfortune for love. Either way, I enjoy reading about it and seeing how others experience it. I don’t prefer, however, the romance that evolves so perfectly without opposition or strife; just the same, I don’t appreciate the love that always ends well predictably perfect.

I think that romance can exist in the most inhospitable of hosts. Moreover, I think that love can exist sans romance and vice versa. In the book, which I’m currently reading Helen of Troy by Margaret George, the retelling of the Trojan War from the perspective of Helen, Helen is wed to Melenaus, whom he loves. Yet at the ebb of her marriage she pleaded to gods for their blessings and, mistakenly, forgot to include Aphrodite – the goddess of passion, beauty and sensuality. She revered firstly Hera – the spouse to Zeus, the husband who favors her but whom she cannot please.

In fury and retaliation, Aphrodite begrudged Helen passion in her marriage. She had the blessings of the other gods and goddesses – loyalty, honesty and amity. She loved Melenaus but lacked passion. One morning while searching for shellfish, Helen encounters Aphrodite who offers her blessings to Helen.  The blessing works, however, the passion is affected Helen only to Paris and not to Melenaus.

Although this story is not one of the classics, thus far it offers something to digest.  How often does one find the perfect person, only to discover s/he is bereft of one thing? I’ve also been reading “Dating the Greek Gods” oddly enough, and it more or less treats this same question. I’ve always been enamoured with the mythos of the Greeks and Romans. In dating or in love and romance, I see that we need to evoke these archetypes, these gods, to realize what we offer and where we must grow. It’s necessary to bridge the gaps in love and romance, by following Apollo and learn from where we’ve lacked and follow the creative spirit of Hephaestus, indulging in the sensuality of Dionysus and beauty of Aphrodite, and communing with Hermes.

If we want passion, we must create it for ourselves and within ourselves; otherwise, we’ll idolize and follow a lie of Aphrodite, which is void of Eros. We’ll lose our Self and Troy all over again.

Forethought


I don’t know that I want to see you

from my rear-view mirror

as I drive away from block.

I don’t know that I want to see you

with blurry vision when I realize

my fall was harder than I planned.

I don’t know that I want to see you

once it’s time to say ‘good bye’.

Cradle


The sultry moon is amorous for rain;
A star struck man peers to read the night
its constellations and their rite
That bind love through unexplainable pain.
The sky falls first in thimbles then in pails;
The dreams of man float by like Styx
Where week-end reverie dim before the next
And the steam from earth looks to Heaven and exhales.

O sad, and sweet, and silent! surely here
A man might dwell apart from troublous fears,

Surveying the lives of others go
From lust to winter – Yet he shall say
That Love has come for him today?
He’ll choke on mud and drown sorrow.
When morning breaks the lips of dawn
and sighs to warm the frosty air
with a caress so supple and fair
He’ll notice the night and stars are gone.

O sad, and sweet, and silent! surely here
A man’s dreams have incarnated his fear.