Whoo-Hoo, But Dangit!

 

Is it possible to be happy and excited and be disappointed at the same time? I think it is. Let me tell you why. Yesterday when I woke up, I saw that I had 270 hits on my blog. I was so excited! I immediately checked my email to see if I had been notified that I had been “Freshly Pressed,” but there was not a message to that effect. So, I went to the freshly pressed page and looked and looked, but again, nothing. During this time, I had another 50 hits on my blog. I was confused and couldn’t figure it out. There had to be a reason. I clicked around my blog a bit and discovered that the hits were coming from StumbleUpon and that the post that was drawing all the attention was my post, The Hilarious Nag Song.

By day’s end, I had accumulated 643 total hits to my blog in one day’s time! My biggest week to date was 707 hits, but all this in one day? How very cool! Yet, at the same time, I felt very disappointed. I, like everyone else, have been, and apparently still am, waiting for the day that one of myposts is chosen to be freshly pressed. I thought yesterday was that day, but unfortunately for my ego, it was not. I suppose the bright side to this is that I still have something to look forward to, yes?

This is icon for social networking website. Th...

This is icon for social networking website. This is part of Open Icon Library’s webpage icon package. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

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This Is Weird

Writer’s block? Me? Sure, I have a hard time getting something started, but only because I am so worried about the first sentence not only grabbing the attention of the reader, but also to lead cleverly, but smoothly into all that is in my mind. I think that is somewhat common. Yes, I suppose writer’s block is also common from time to time, but in searching my memory from top to bottom, I have never encountered anything like this—until now.

I finally have the time to write and nothing comes to mind, but a blank slate. I have a list of topics sitting right here in front of me. I have tried quite a few of them, but nothing is coming to the page, but a bunch of garbled ramble. I remember with each one of these ideas, when I wrote them down, I had a thousand words, at least, hysterically trying to come out at once, but couldn’t write them then because I had school work that took priority. I have tried starting the first of a series of 32 posts I intend to write, ironically about the do’s and the don’ts of writing, but again, just a bunch of muddled mental mumbo-jumbo stiltedly comes from my finger tips to my keys, nothing I would ever post. I have tried the 7-minute story, something I have been wanting to do for a long time now, but have waited until I could do so with nothing else pressing and my mind relatively free to create. Nothing!

What is the 7-minute story? You have two choices to learn what this is. The first, wait until I actually write one, because no matter what, I am going to write at least one. I do not want to try to explain it now, since I am struggling to fit strings of words together. I do not want to do it an injustice…or you. Your second choice is to pop on over to Limebird Writers and look for the post entitled 7-minute story, which is where I found it, and read about it there. I think it is a great idea and could give a writer great potential, but unfortunately, today is not the day for me. Such a bummer!

I have also run out of photos to post. I could take some more, but it is getting ready to rain any minute and I am sort of dog-sitting. I am sure your next thought is that I could take her with me, yes? No. She is 12 years old and has hip dysplasia which means her back legs are essentially paralyzed. She can still hobble around, but I would need to walk on the road a ways to get some more shots and the asphalt would bloody her little back feet. I have not posted music in a while, so maybe I will try that next. I can usually muster up some connection or memory to accompany a song. We’ll see.

The other thing I have wanted to post is a memory blog about my oldest son, Jeremiah.  Quite some time ago, I wrote one about my youngest son, Zachary. If you didn’t get to read it and would like to, it is right here—My Little Boy. It is a lengthy post, and Jeremiah’s will be also. Other than the music, and unless something powerful hits my mind like a speed train and knocks me out of my chair, I think I will get started on Jeremiah’s, even if just jotting down all the different things I want to write about within it.

Whew! Until then, I will just let this writer’s block run its course. I am sure it will pass. It will, won’t it? It has to. Maybe it is a cue to do something else I have been meaning to do. For example, fill out these applications sitting on my desk, or the postcards I bought my boys last week, or just go take a bubble bath and read some of the two books I have yet to finish. Anyone, please stick with me and do not get discouraged. I am still right here and am not going anywhere. I am just stuck.

“I’m Not Lost, Just Weird”

Yesterday, I spent the day with my bestie watching movies and relaxing, which was really nice and something I really needed. As a result, I did not write anything to post yesterday, so as you may guess, I am very eager to write some things today. Fortunately for me, and for you, I chose to do some reading first. I read some posts from about a dozen or so blogs, and then I ended up on I’m Not Lost, Just Weird. This is a blog I visit often because the author and my dear Zen friend posts some amazing things and if you are looking for food for thought, I would say to put her at the top of your list. Seriously!

Ok, I read her latest post, was appalled at the ridiculousness of some of her followers…hey! I am just telling it like it is, but if nothing else, they just gave her some new material for another great and honest post! After I made a comment and said what I had to say, I decided to click on one of her “categories” entitled Koffee Klatch and was first very intrigued by post titles. As I read one after another, I was hooked and it was with great pain I pulled myself away so I could write this post and give all of you the link to her blog, a most honored treasure. I so selflessly share this magnificence with you and hope you enjoy reading her very clever thoughts and arrangement of words as much as I do.

No excuses! I have provided direct links to her blog, I’m Not Lost, Just Weird, and to the category I am raving about, Koffee Klatch, twice now in the same post. Just click and start reading. How sad for you if you don’t.

 

My 100th WordPress Follower

Kathryn Johnston @ 4am Writer

As you may know, those who follow my blog, reading my posts and commenting, are very important to me. It is all of you who keep me motivated to write more and confident enough to write at all. I, of course, appreciate each and every one of you, however, one blogger has come to follow me that I want to acknowledge in a different way. She is my 100th WordPress followerand this is for me, a sort of milestone.Kathryn Johnston, author of 4amWriter, among other published works, is my 100th follower and an amazingly talented writer. Not only is she really gifted in what she does, but she shares many “how-to” tidbits on becoming better writer’s ourselves. Her blog is rich with a vast amount of good, easy to follow, and effective information and is just an overall pleasure to read.

I feel a deep sense of honor when I learn that published authors follow my blog, and Kathryn is no exception. Thank you so much for your interest in my writing. I welcome any criticism that you may have to offer. I, too, dream of someday being published and will not give up no matter how many doors close. If there is one thing my life has taught me is that for every door that closes, there are two or more opening. It is up to me to be patient and believe that my hard work will pay off, as long as I keep my eyes and my mind open to the many possibilities.

Please, anyone reading this post, take a moment and visit 4amWriter! I guarantee that you have nothing to lose and everything to gain by doing so. By the way, the picture posted is one I obtained from 4amWriter’s Facebook page, because for security reasons, I was unable to load her Gravatar pic from WordPress. So, you can check her out on Facebook too! How cool, huh?

Awesome Blog Content Number Three

I have been nominated for the ABC Award for the third time! The ABC stands for Awesome Blog Content. And this glorious nomination was passed on to me by Dr. Angela of A Kiss of Bliss. Thank you, Angi, so much for this awesome award, for reading my blog, and finding me worthy of this humbling recognition. I am truly grateful, as well as honored!

Here are the rules for this award:

  1. Thank the person who nominated you
  2. There is no limit to how many fellow bloggers you can nominate so go wild. He-he.
  3. Share some things about you but alphabetically just a word or two about you starting with each alphabet. (Or alternatively, just write the first word you think of.)

My Awesome Blog Content Award Nominees:

kissingthecockroach

joeandjulieskitchen

Five Reflections

Assia’s Kaleidoscope

♡ The Tale Of My Heart ♡

Baker Bettie

semiswede

DivingǀArchaeology

Foodimentary

Lea & Jay

My A to Zzzz’s:

A—ARTICHOKE HEARTS

B—BANANA PUDDING

C—CAULIFLOWER

D—DEVILED EGGS

E—EGGPLANT PARMESAN

F—FRIED

G—GARLIC

H—HOMEMADE BISCUITS

I—ICED TEA

J—JAMBALAYA

K—KIELBASA

L—LEMON MERINGUE PIE

M—MUSHROOMS

N—NUTTERBUTTER COOKIES

O—OKRA

P—PARSLEY

Q—QUESADILLA

R—RISOTTO

S—SPINACH LASAGNA

T—TIRAMISU

U—UPSIDE-DOWN CAKE

V—VANILLA ICE CREAM

W—WAFFLES

X—XAVIER SOUPPE

Y—YOGURT

Z—ZITI

These ten bloggers do have some awesome things posted on their blogs! In following my food theme, some of them have great recipes, but some of them are great for other reasons. Can you guess which is which? If not, the answer lies within a simple click!

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Just Me, #9

Hello Friends and Fans,

A lot going on in my life right now, as you may have read in some of my previous posts, that is once again preventing me the time to respond to comments, post 4 more awards (since the last I have posted), return emails, read my wonderful blogger friend’s posts, and of course, write all that I have building up in my head that will, eventually, fill pages. I am still looking for a job while keeping up, barely, with my school work, and lately, my anxiety level has been at an acutely diabolical height that is unusual, even for me.

Yesterday, hours before the onset of my panic attack, I had a very productive day. Yes, you know me, there is always a bright side, and here is one facet of this chaotic time in my life’s bright side. I completed and caught up a lot of my homework, and then Mary took me to the bowling alley for more research on my English class ethnological, subculture study. I took a lot of great pictures, found someone not only willing, but eager to talk to me and I learned a huge amount of information from this gentleman including being introduced to several people who will be willing to give me an interview. Having turned in my Literature Review, the interviews will be the last leg of my study, before I will piece it altogether into one final report. Not only that, but I had a really nice time hanging out with Mary.

My Panic Attack post that I wrote very early this morning, I did from my WordPress app on my Blackberry, so I know how that works now. This is a very good thing, because it will allow me to post when I cannot be near my computer and can utilize time when I am also away from my school work. I will, of course, edit that post to include category (Poetic Detours), tags, and a picture of some sort. I have also been taking pictures, other than at the bowling alley, with my Nikon CoolPix digital camera, and when time permits, I will figure out how to upload the photos to my computer so that I can post the best of the bunch here on my blog. There you go, something for you to look forward to!

A quick note in regards to my panic attack—first I want to say thank you to all of you who posted comments and for the words of encouragement and support. I am, once again, very touched by how much you care about me and am very grateful for you! One common thing that was mentioned was how well I worked through the attack. I want to give recognition to three women who have made it possible for me to do this. The first is my treatment counselor, Kathy Ward, in 2005/2006 who encouraged me to seek a doctor in regards to severe depression when I first started experiencing panic attacks, roughly four months after I got clean. In taking her advice, I did seek a doctor and that led me to getting into therapy, along with a medication that helps balance both my anxiety and depression. I was dead-set against it at first, not wanting to replace one drug with another, but the attacks were becoming debilitating and I finally conceded. It was also explained to me, by Kathy, that I had done a lot of deceitful manipulation to my brain and the normal functions of the chemicals therein, so the medication will help repair and replenish those chemicals to the level they are intended to be at. Between the medication and the therapy, and staying clean and healthy, I felt much better and could function again. And the panic attacks subsided considerably!

The second woman was my second to last therapist (the last was her replacement, but her style was so basic it did not work for me), Dr. Kerri in 2008/2009. Being a therapist, she gave me different exercises to do. We would first do them together in her office and then I would take them home, work on them during the week, and then share with her how well or how little it worked. We would either add it to my “tool box” or discard it and try something new. There are two that I use regularly for panic attacks. One is deep breathing. The technique that I use is to count to eight while slowly inhaling. Not only am I counting to eight, but I am visualizing clean, positive light and energy coming in through my breath. I then hold it for two seconds, and then exhale through pursed lips, slowly but deliberately, again counting to eight, while visualizing dark, negative, energy leaving my body. This works really well. Aside from the physiological aspects that accompany deep breathing, I am also disengaging my brain from not only focusing on the thoughts that may have kicked the panic into motion, but also from focusing on the attack itself.

The second is another exercise of visualization. I close my eyes, see a bright blue sky, and see my every thought written into a balloon and drifting away from me, releasing my focus on those thoughts. This one takes a little more effort, but it does work. I generally go with the breathing, but depending on the intensity of the attack or how quickly it hits, I latch onto the first technique that enters my mind. In having made it a habit to do these exercises as soon as I think of them, I have learned to get through them without potential self-harm, which is how they were when they first started occurring in 2005.

And last, but most certainly not least, my very wise and intelligent best friend, Cherie. Through the course of our friendship, which began in 2009, I have developed a trust in her that is unbelievable to me, even now. I have opened up and shared so much of what goes on in my head, and what I have endured throughout my lifetime, that along with her support, insights, and deep understanding, has allowed things that have been broken inside of me for years, to come to light and to begin to heal. This healing and growth has resulted in my panic attacks to be very far and few between. The do occur, but on the rarest of occasions and I am able to pinpoint exactly what set them off, whereas before, I could never be sure. In opening up to her, I have opened myself up to me. Please believe me when I say, that is a rare and lovely gift!

That is all I can do for now, folks. I have an exam to prepare for and several assignments due this weekend, so, though I will try, I may not be back for a few days. I am sorry I keep getting behind, but such is life. {sigh}

Happy Spring,

-Cindy

Stress Relief

I do not want to make it a habit of posting music, as my main objective on keeping a blog is to write, but I really needed a stress relief today and this truly did it for me. With school, comes stress, but I have two major assignments I have been struggling with for weeks and today, I gave myself permission to put them both away and just relax! Don’t get me wrong, I love a challenge, as this is how I learn, but I also have a tendency to be a bit of a perfectionist and become frustrated when I can’t get it just right. So, learning will have to wait and breathing with a smile is what is in store for me today.

This song is my all-time favorite, by far! Not only have I faced many of the situations that are in this song, I have also adopted this very attitude. The music is uplifting to me, gets me to wiggle in a dance-like fashion, puts a smile on my face, and just makes me feel good inside and out.

I remember the first time I heard this song. I was in high school working at Burger King, and one of my co-workers, who was also my friend, invited me to her and her husband’s house for dinner. She had three young boys and a beautiful baby girl. After dinner, they turned on the radio and everyone started dancing. I am not one to dance, so I sat alone for a while, just watching this happy family enjoy each other. I finally reached a point where I couldn’t not join in, so to help diffuse my discomfort, I picked Makaylah, the baby girl, up from where she lay and held her in my arms while dancing…to this song!

I have loved the song ever since and was especially surprised and pleased to learn that this song was made with only Bobby McFerrin’s voice—no instruments. How very cool is that? Another thing I love about this song is that it has a very reggae feel to it which is one of my favorite styles of music.

Music makes everything better! It can change your mood, help clear your mind, and be very inspiring and motivating. For me, music is the medicine for my soul!

Crank up the volume, go to full screen, and enjoy!