Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Big Girl Words

What do you do when you want something? Do you ask specifically for what you want? Do you hint at it?

Many years ago, my brother asked me to babysit his daughter, my niece. I was in Germany when she was born, so I didn't see/meet her until she was almost two years old. I felt that that would give me a good chance to get to know her better, so I agreed.

He dropped her off at my grandparent's house since it was a familiar place for her. I figured that we'd watch Barney and play some games.

We never watched the full Barney episode. She cried the whole time.

I tried to get her to stop crying by waving candy and toys in front of her. That didn't work. After a while, I was getting pretty frustrated. I didn't know how to make her stop. At one point she flailed around on the floor, yelling that she wanted her daddy. I told her that I wanted him, too!

I took her into the dining room. Her cries died down when she saw a bowl of fruit on the table. She pointed at it (the bowl) and made this whimpering sound. I looked at the bowl and asked her what she wanted, but she kept pointing and making the sound.

I told her that she would have to use her big girl words and tell me which piece of fruit she wanted, but she wouldn't. She kept pointing and whimpering instead.

Finally, I took the bowl off of the table and brought it down to her level. I forgot which piece of fruit she picked, but she did stop crying/whimpering. She got what she wanted.

So do you whine and whimper or do you ask specifically for what you want? Do you use your big girl words?

Friday, March 6, 2009


A few months ago, I needed to buy a new shower curtain. Some of the hook holes had ripped on the old one, and the curtain was no longer hanging properly from the shower rod.

At the store, I found two that I really liked. They were reasonably priced and would match my teal-colored rugs and toilet seat cover. One had an imprint of the world and the other one had circles of various sizes and bluish/teal colors. I like globes and maps of the world, so I was leaning heavily towards getting that one. But there was a problem.

It was see-through. Totally transparent except for the world imprint. It was about $2 cheaper than the opaque circle curtain, so I was initially all for getting it. But I couldn't get past the world's transparency.

I kept thinking what if friends or relatives came over and really needed to use my one bathroom when I was in the shower? I didn't want them to see my kibbles and bits. Plus I didn't want a view of the bathroom when I was in the shower. I wanted to be in a separate world (no pun intended) where there were no distracting views of the toilet or sink. Just me, the water, the soap, and my thoughts.

I also kept thinking of the shower scene from the movie Psycho. So the transparency was a little disturbing. The thought of seeing someone walk into the bathroom while I was in the shower would be scary.

So as I stood in the store weighing my options, I chose the one that met ALL of my needs. My need for a curtain, my need for privacy, my need to keep water from landing on the floor, and my need to match my current rug and toilet seat cover.

I had to meet all of these needs at a reasonable price. So I chose the opaque circle shower curtain. As much as I wanted the world, I didn't pick it because it wouldn't meet ALL my needs.

That's the same way that I view relationships now. It has to meet my needs. Needs like honesty and consistency. Those MUST be met. I've compromised before and stayed in unhealthy relationships when those needs weren't met. Though I learned valuable lessons, I don't want to compromise like that again.

I don't need the world - just the truth and follow through. I've come around full circle.

Thursday, March 5, 2009

A Quest

It's been over a month since my last entry. I can't believe it's been that long. I was on a quest. A soul-searching quest on how to be a more authentic VADRMGRL.

For the last few weeks, I've been reading voraciously. I've read about 4.5 books in the past two weeks. I've also been writing in my notebooks and journals. I tell ya - writing does my mind, body, and soul good!

What do you do when you need to figure out some things? Do you talk to friends, do you write, do you take a trip somewhere? Let me know.

Tuesday, February 3, 2009


It is not easy to find happiness in ourselves, and it is not possible to find it elsewhere.
-Agnes Repplier

Friday, January 30, 2009


Jason: Should I bring my own chains?

Mark: We always do.

These are the final lines from the existential movie I Heart (Love) Huckabees. Jason Schwartzman and Mark Wahlberg are discussing their next move. They make their decision as they utter these sometimes truthful words.

It's interesting how in life we are the ones holding ourselves back. We let things that other people say and do become our chains. We let them tell us about our limitations without ever proving them (or ourselves if we believe it) wrong. And we hold onto that chain without ever trying to break a link.

Sometimes we make our own chains by letting fear get the best of us. Fear will always hold you back and keep you down if you don't overcome it. Then you won't get to be the true gift to the world that you were meant to be.

So break some links and be the best that you can be. The world is waiting...

Wednesday, January 28, 2009


Have you had a moment of true clarity or realization? A moment when you just knew something? You have no doubt about it? The thought just pops into your head? What do you do with this information? Do you follow or believe it?

I loved the show Buffy the Vampire Slayer. It was well-written and thought-provoking. In one episode, Buffy realizes that maybe she doesn't have enough strength for an upcoming battle. She doesn't say it. It's just a moment where she's putting a book on a shelf, and the thought crosses her mind. Every time the episode showed her putting that book away, that ding went off - a realization of her doubt.

I heard that ding sound loud and clear at the end of 2007. A friend and I had decided to exchange Christmas gifts. She and I had known each other for over 10 years. A lot of her luggage and personal items were lost after a flight, and I wanted to help replace some of her more treasured pieces. A camera being one of them.

Most of my friends know that I don't really care for material gifts. A gift card or hanging out are things that make me happy. Earlier that year, she had offered me a knock off Coach purse. I'm not big on purses, so I told her that I didn't want it.

Well, when Christmas rolled around, I proudly gave her the new camera that I had bought. Guess what was one of my gifts? That's right - that purse. Though I smiled, I was actually hurt that she offered me something that I hadn't wanted months ago. Why would I want it now?

In that moment, I heard a ding go off in my head. The ding was followed by the words, "She doesn't really know you." I was sad at the realization that she didn't really know me. People that have only known me for a short time know that I don't like ice or that I run my apartment heater on rotisserie settings (chicken, anyone?) After 10 years, she didn't know that I didn't like material things? Hmmpphh.

She and I are no longer friends. Not because of the purse, but because of other things. I helped her set up her camera, but she never took a picture of me or of us on what was to be one of the last days of our friendship.

Buffy went on to eventually win the battle. Just like I'll go on to make friends that I'll know and that'll know me. I'll listen to what they have to say. I'll pay attention. I'll listen for the dings - realizations of the truth. And I'll decide whether to fight or lose the battle for that friendship.


For a long time, I was proud of the fact that I never really argued with my exes. I would beam as I imagined how perfectly we got along. I thought true love meant that we always got along and agreed on everything. What a myth.

The truth was we didn't argue because I was afraid. Since they had the ability to say something with conviction, they were always right (in my mind). I was afraid to be a person with her own thoughts and feelings. That fear made me invisible. It takes two people to make a relationship, and sometimes I wasn't there because of this fear.

We also didn't argue because I couldn't find the words. I couldn't/wouldn't use my voice. I thought that if I spoke up, they would leave. And I couldn't have that. So I stayed quiet. I was a peacekeeper trying to keep people from being mad at me, saying hurtful things, or leaving.

Peacekeeping has caused me a ton of problems. Trying to keep the peace has made aspects of my life not so peaceful. I can't tell you how many times someone has said something hurtful to me, and I didn't say anything because I didn't want to rock the boat.

All the while, I would be seething with anger on the inside while smiling happily on the outside. I was telling myself that what they said didn't matter or that it didn't hurt. When really it did matter and it did hurt. Ouch! And I was saying to them with my lack of words that this behavior was okay and that I would take whatever they dished.

I still struggle with getting the words out, but I've cut down on the peacekeeping. People are allowed to say what they want to say, and I'm allowed the same right. I may not always say something with conviction, but at least I'm questioning crazy comments. I've had enough of the invisibility. I want to be seen.

Monday, January 26, 2009


My grandfather used to do a 'trick' when my sister, brother, and I were young. He'd place a walnut in the palm of his hand, press the palm side of that hand against the steel leg of the dining table, and break the walnut shell open.

Ooooo, we were so fascinated! We'd have him do that over and over again with different, unopened walnuts. We were amazed that after that hand squeeze, he'd get the walnut meat. Eventually, we'd try to do it ourselves.

The problem was that our hands were too small. We could barely make the walnut fit in one of our palms. There was no way that we were gonna get the walnut to stay in place while we wrapped one hand around the table leg. It was either hold the walnut or the table leg. Or try to squeeze the walnut and table leg with both hands. That still didn't work. He laughed at our attempts.

Fast forward to adulthood. My grandfather is no longer living, and I don't know if any of us can do that now. We have adult sized hands, but I'm not sure if any of us can muster up the amount of pressure that it takes to manually open a walnut.

I love that sometimes in life it takes pressure to break the hard shell to get to the good stuff inside. It takes pressure to break the outer shell of who you think you should be to get to the center of who you really are. Even if you don't have enough pressure to break something open yourself, you can have enough grit and fortitude to handle it.

I heard a gentleman say that pressure can break someone or make diamonds. To that I say, "Sparkle, ladies!!!"

Friday, January 23, 2009

For a Time

For a year, I mourned.
For a month, I cried.
For a week, I thought.
For a day, I breathed.
For an hour, I stood.
For a minute, I smiled.
For a second, I laughed.

Thursday, January 22, 2009


A motivational speaker was talking recently about dealing with negative people. He said that we should be like an eagle and rise above the situation. That would give eagles a better vantage point. It would also help to avoid chickens and turkeys.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Testing in Progress

Ok. I've addressed this before. I believe that life gives us pop quizzes, tests, and final exams to see if we've learned specific lessons and subjects. Though I think that we're constantly being tested, I feel that some tests have a greater impact upon the final grade. At this very moment, I'm taking a life lesson final exam. One that deals with finally letting go of things that hurt or bother me.

Last week, a former friend sent me a Facebook friend request. I had to stop dealing with him in March 2008 because he couldn't keep his word - something that really bothers me. Something that I mentioned to him, but that he kept on doing. So I haven't spoken to him in almost a year.

Now what do you think I did when I saw that request? Do you think I logged in and denied it? Do you think I sent him an angry email repeating what I told him last year? If you guessed none of the above, you'd be correct. I did nothing.

Don't get me wrong. He's a very nice guy. But if I was a dress, he'd be the purse that didn't match. Because I need a friend that follows his/her word. That's what I know for sure. I can't have it any other way.

Honestly, when I saw that email, I wondered if I should try to deal with him again. Then I thought about my belief that lessons keep coming back until you learn them. If his repeatedly not keeping his word bothers me and if clearly stating that is a lesson that I need to learn(instead of letting it slide like I used to), then I need to honor myself and not deal with that behavior anymore.

Maybe he's changed. I don't know. At this time, I'm not willing to find out if he has or hasn't. I need to give that purse away and find a more complimentary accessory. No more bad grades (pain) for this subject. I'm going for an A this time.

Friday, January 16, 2009

Pass It On?

When one relationship ends (against your wishes), do you make the next girlfriend/boyfriend pay for your hostility towards your ex? Do you take this anger or hostility out on an innocent bystander?

I've heard lots of people say how they're going to hurt the next person the same way that they've been hurt. I've never agreed with making the next person pay for the previous one's actions. To me, it's not fair. This next person has done nothing wrong, so why take it out on them? Though I don't believe in taking out hostilities on the next relationship, I have inadvertently taken it out on others. Ones that I love and care for very much.

Years ago, I was babysitting my niece (from my blog entry Take a Temperature) and my nephew, her older brother. He was 5 years old. She was 2 and could walk and say a few words.

My nephew was watching The Power Rangers on television. I felt that he was sitting too close to the TV so I told him to back up just a little bit. He didn't move.

I figured that he didn't hear me, so I stood by the TV and told him again. Still nothing. He never looked up to acknowledge me. He just sat there staring at the screen.

I told him that I wasn't going to say it again. He needed to scoot back from the TV. Still no movement. I felt this anger well up inside me and hit him on his little leg. I knew instantly that I had hit him too hard. His leg turned red and my hand hurt. He started to cry. I felt bad.

I walked him away from the TV to talk to him in the hallway where he wouldn't be distracted by any Power Rangers. I explained to him that I didn't like hitting him, but that he needed to pay attention to me when I was talking to him.

During this hallway discussion, my niece walked towards us with some toilet paper in her hand. She walked up to her brother, stood on her tiptoes in front of him, and reached up to wipe the tears from his face. While wiping his face, she told him, "Doan cwy. Doan cwy." (Don't cry). Awwww, man, did I feel like the worst auntie ever! I already felt bad for hitting him because I don't like to hit children. I was sick.

After some time, I realized that I was mad at someone else. Yes, I was annoyed that my nephew didn't listen to me. But I was really mad about a relationship. I'd been given the It's Just Not Working speech. I felt unheard in that relationship, and in turn, I felt unheard by my nephew. And I took out my relationship anger and frustration on my innocent bystander nephew.

We all get mad and need to vent. I do my very best to keep angry feelings about one person from spilling onto another. It just causes hurt all around. There's no need to pass the pain along. What do you think? Have you passed along pain? What was the reason? Did you know that you'd done that? What did you do?

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Absolutely Love This Quote

"I'm the one that I want."
Margaret Cho said this. It's also the title of one of her stand up comedy shows.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

<, >, =

Less than. Greater than. Equal to.

I'm sure on some level we all compare ourselves to others. When you do this comparison, are you less than another, greater than another, or equal to? I hope you know which one NOT to pick.

Love yourselves!!

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Take a Temperature

Can you really know how someone else feels unless you feel what they're feeling?

Years ago, my mom, young niece, and I were preparing to go to the mall. My niece needed to take a bath and get dressed. She was old enough to bathe by herself, but she needed someone to draw her bath water. My mom helped her pick out her clothes while I drew the water.

When everything was ready, my niece went to take her bath. I was reading in a room next to the bathroom, so I'd be able to hear her if she needed anything. After being in the tub for a few minutes, my niece called for me. I went into the bathroom to check on her. She said that the water was cold and asked if could I make it warmer for her.

Being the loving auntie that I am, I turned on the hot water knob. I told her to scoot back in the tub as I didn't want hot water to splash on her. I turned on the hot water and stuck my hand under the faucet to make sure that the water was warm enough. It was. I went back to reading. I made sure that I could hear her splashing.

A few minutes later, she called for me again. She said that the water was cold - again. I thought that was strange. She hadn't been in the water that long, and it was cold already? I turned on the water. She scooted back. Water ran. Everything seemed fine. I went back to reading.

She called for me again. This time she was shivering with her legs pulled up to her chest. She said it was still cold. What's going on, I thought.

I touched the bathtub water and sure enough, it was cold. I turned on the hot water knob and let it run. After a few seconds, I put my hand underneath the faucet. The water was cold. I turned on the cold water knob and it was hot. Then I realized the problem.

The faucets were switched. The hot water knob produced cold water, while the cold water knob produced hot water. My mom had recently bought a new home and, unbeknownst to her, the plumbing was accidentally reversed. She had her own bathroom in her bedroom and rarely used this one. I was visiting and staying at a hotel so I hadn't used that bathtub/shower.

The remnants of hot water must have come out when I added hot water the first time. I didn't put my hand under the water the additional time(s) because I assumed that the water was hot. That poor baby. I can only imagine what she thought.

Good thing I touched the water. I didn't know that I was freezing her with hot (really cold) water. I had to touch the water in the bathtub to finally realize what she was feeling.

Monday, January 12, 2009

Survey Says

I'm taking a poll. When do you tell someone that they've made you mad or hurt you? Do you tell them right then and there? Do you tell them after you're calm? What do you say? How do you say it? Let me know.

Back to Reality

When I was 5 or 6 years old, a cousin and I were playing Hide and Seek at her house. I forgot the other person that was doing the seeking, but my cousin and I were doing the hiding. Since it was her house, and she knew all the good spots, she decided that we should hide under her bed.

The bed was really nice. It had frilly ruffles along the bottom. No one would be able to see us unless they lifted them. She told me to go under first. As she lifted the ruffles and I was about to crawl underneath, she slapped me. Not an 'Ooops, I didn't mean to hit you' slap. I mean a 'I'm gonna slap you into next week' slap. It was hard! If I had been an apple pie, the filling would have been on the floor.

I cried loudly. My mom and other relatives ran into the room to see what had happened. They asked my cousin why had she hit me. She said she didn't know. As I sat there sniffling with my red cheek, I forgot about Hide and Seek. All I could think about was the pain and that maybe I shouldn't play with her anymore. Eventually we played again and have stayed in contact over the years. To this day, she still doesn't know why she hit me. That slap is still memorable after all these years.

Sometimes we get slapped by life issues or problems. The slap can be financial, love, or job related. That slap can be a way for us to take a real look at a situation. Maybe those slaps are supposed to help us remember our forgotten goals. Maybe they're supposed to help us see with whom we're dealing. Maybe they're supposed to jolt us back to reality and get us back on track. Whatever the reason, maybe they're a way of getting our attention. Are you looking?

Friday, January 9, 2009


L.O.V.E. - Loss of Voluntary Emotions
I saw this recently. Even though I don't agree with it, I thought it was cute.

Thursday, January 8, 2009


For a long time, I wondered if I was good enough when it comes to relationships. I wondered if I was fun or exciting or cute enough to be in X, Y, or Z's life. I tried so hard to figure out if I was or wasn't. Either way, I always decided to try harder to convince the alphabet love that I was.

But recently I decided to rethink that thought. I started wondering if they were good enough to be in mine. I wondered if they were worthy enough for my precious gifts. Could they appreciate my offerings?

I came up with a series of questions to think about when assessing a new letter love.

Are you worth the gold of my heart?
Are you worth the diamonds of my love?
Do you deserve the silver of my trust?
Do you deserve the rubies of my attention?
Will you appreciate the sapphire of my honesty?
Will you appreciate the emeralds of my essence?

When I talk about assessing, I'm talking about seeing how X, Y, or Z treats others. For if they treat others poorly, they'll eventually get around to doing the same with you. I'm talking about really seeing if someone will treat me with the respect and love that everyone should have and deserves.

I'm not talking about being conceited or vain like I'm the greatest thing since sliced bread. If they want to treat my diamonds, gold, and emeralds like glass, pyrite (Fool's Gold), and rhinestones, then they won't appreciate the Tiffany box of me.

So wear your jeweled crown of self-worth, your shiny necklace of having the best, and your regal robe of self-love. Sit on your throne of what life has to offer. For you are the queen of YOUR castle, and only those worthy of sitting on the throne by your side should receive your gems.

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

For the Birds

One day last April, I was getting dressed for work. I was combing my hair when I heard this strange sound, like paper rustling. I knew that I was the only one in the apartment, but I looked around anyway.

The washer and dryer for my apartment are in a closet in my bedroom. As I got closer to this closet, the rustling sound became more pronounced along with some squawking and wings flapping. Great, I thought. 'There's a bird in the closet that's gonna fly all around the apartment when I open these doors. How am I gonna get it out?'

Though I was scared, I opened the closet door. I thought about how quickly I could run to the front door and fan it out of the apartment. But the bird wasn't in the closet. It was in the dryer. It was walking around the air tube that runs from the back of the dryer to outside the apartment. I shook the dryer a few times thinking that it would leave once it heard me.

It did not.

Because of the closet's design, I couldn't reach behind the dryer to shake the air tube. I got a hanger and tapped the tube a few times. Nothing. The bird still walked around the tube, unfazed.

I had to go to work, so I left. I thought the bird would be gone when I got home. It was. Whew!

The next morning around 6 am, I woke up to the walking, squawking, and flapping. What! This thing was back! I was annoyed. I got the hanger and hit the air tube with more force. It still wouldn't leave. Since I couldn't go back to sleep, I got up and got ready for work with Tweety in the dryer.

Later, I called the apartment maintenance crew. They'd heard of birds in the air tube. They told me to turn on the dryer. The heat would make the bird leave. I was nervous because I didn't want to hurt it. Plus I didn't want burned bird body in the dryer. But I did as instructed. The bird still stayed - heat and all.

I called maintenance again to tell them that that didn't work. They said that they needed to put in a little bird blocking gate at the outside dryer flap that leads into the dryer tube. They would fix it as soon as they could.

A week or two later, that bird was still walking around, waking me up earlier than I would like. Uuuggghh! I swore my freshly dried clothes were starting to smell like dirt, and I had hit that tube more times than I can count at 6:30 am. I got the impression that now there was a nest in the tube, and no amount of dryer heat and tube tapping would make that bird leave. I called maintenance again.

They apologized and said that they had been really busy. I told them that I needed them to come and remove the nest and put up the bird gate. When I got home, I saw the maintenance slip stating that they had replaced the tube and put up the bird gate. The next morning at 6 am was the moment of truth.

It was a Saturday morning, and sure enough I heard the bird. I hopped out of bed in my too-short nightshirt and ran to the bedroom window. I could see the entrance flap for the dryer, and the bird was trying to lift it to get into the dryer. But the bird gate was blocking further entry.

Ha ha! I smiled as it tried over and over again to get past that gate. It would fly away, come back, and try again. I opened the window so that I could close the flap with my broom each time it flew away. I'm sure I showed my neighbors more than they needed to see.

When it came back, I noticed that it had little twigs in its mouth. And it tried again. I thought how stupid it must be for trying to get in where it's not wanted. I thought why doesn't it go away for good. Why does it keep trying?

Right at that moment, I had a thought. 'Haven't I done that? Haven't I offered my love (twigs) to exes who had put up their own (bird) gates? Didn't I try to build relationships (nests) in unavailable tubes?'

I realized that I was that bird. (If you know my real name, you know how ironic that is.) I tried to get in where I wasn't wanted. I offered love to those who didn't want it.

My once smug smile turned into a sad lip bite. The bird made a pitiful little caw sound and flew away. It tried over the next day or so to get in, but eventually gave up. Just like I did.

Don't get me wrong. I didn't give up like I was defeated. I gave up wanting unreciprocated relationships. I gave up offering the gift of my true love. Why? Because that stuff is for the birds.

Tuesday, January 6, 2009


Sometimes I want to tell younger girls that they don't have to do things that they don't want to do to get love from someone else.

Sometimes I want to tell younger boys that they might want to treat girls better.

Sometimes I want to tell older women that they don't have to dress like they're 20.

Sometimes I want to tell older men that they don't have to act like they're 20.

Sometimes I want to cry at the extremes people will go to to have someone love them.

All the time - I realize that it's a person's choice to accept/give poor treatment or dress/act a younger age. Their choices are theirs to make. It's their lesson to learn.

Thursday, January 1, 2009


Today, I feel really powerful and confident. I believe that anything is possible. Don't ask me what triggered this feeling. I woke up, and there it was.

I hope that this feeling stays with me. I hope that you get it, too. It's wonderful. Like you're invincible, indestructible, undeniable, undefeatable. I feel like I should wear a caped outfit with a B on the chest. Because I believe. (No tights, though, 'cause they may make my hindparts look big.)

What are you feeling today? Strong, decisive, loved? I sure hope so.