this here giraffe

when i was little, i was at the zoo (probably in chicago) with my grandfather. on the walk from the parking lot to the entrance, he asked what my favorite animal is. i somehow hadn’t thought about it before. on the fly i said the giraffe is my favorite. it has remained so (perhaps because i am so fiercely loyal), although there are many animals that capture my affection. dolphins, cats of all kinds, seals, sea lions, walruses, horses…i could go on. and on. i love all the animals, maybe that’s why i hadn’ t chosen a favorite before that moment. i didn’t know i needed to.

i bought a set of medicine cards a year or so ago. in it are a few blanks where you can name an animal of your  choice. of course i chose giraffe for one of them.

as it turns out, giraffes symbolize grace. one source says it is divine in origin and represents the indispensable  gift for development, improvement, and expansion of one’s character. the ability to rise above the negative events of time.

did my little 4-year old self intuit this? the giraffe just suits me. perfectly.

change is the most fascinating of all phenomena

did a late summer cleaning.

always start with the surface. sweeping all the dust out from under my bed reminds me how dirty the air is living so close to the BQE. although, all 7 apartments where i’ve lived in NYC have gotten really dirty really quickly. the air here is dirty.

i came across an “autobiography” that i wrote in my Life Stories class senior year at Elon. my immediate reaction was, not much has changed. how could that be? so much has changed. my voice has definitely changed drastically for starters. my friends have changed, my circle has changed. in some ways nothing has changed at all. how can that be?

the most gradual change rests in the deepest depths. the karmic lessons. maybe that’s why the only lasting change must come from within. in some ways i feel like i’m still inside of the cocoon. no matter how deep i go, there’s always another layer to peel. i feel love, joy, and gratitude for the friends who have been/are present on the journey.

from a writing prompt, what i want:

what i want…i want to be happy.

i want a job i love.

i want enthusiasm and energy.

i want to never lose my mind.

i want a perfect boy.

i want to give,

to contribute,

somehow make a difference.

i want my dreams to never end.

i want to be tan

and i want to be healthy.

i want to conquer.

i want to read more books.

i want my parents to be happy.

i want to think about others.

i want to live in Spain.

i want to travel.

i want to go to South America.

i want the earth to be clean.

the craziness to end,

the suburbs to explode.

i want to make art,

and i want to make money.

i want to learn how to blow glass.

i want to use public transportation.

i want the days to be warm and sunny.

i want to see frogs fall from the sky.

i want to eat good food.

i want to not lose touch with my friends.

reality.

maybe someday kids,

a dog,

and a cat.

i want to play.

i want to feel,

want to be,

want to want.

i want to be successful,

good things for other people.

i want to see the leaves change in the fall.

i want to swim in the Mediterranean.

i want a Picasso original.

i want to meet someone i love.

i want to run through a field

of wildflowers

and tumble down

a grassy knoll.

i want others to have good thoughts of me.

i want to look at the stars

through a telescope.

may 2001.

the knave of chalices

i signed up to get a daily tarot card reading the other day, which i’ve been enjoying for the last two days with the exception of all the junk email that has been coming along with it. maybe i need to get myself a set and do it the old fashioned way.

today i got the KNAVE OF CHALICES.

“this card suggests TRUST. i am enthusiastic, open, and trusting about my new  found feelings, capacity, passion, or hearts desire. i wear my heart on my sleeve and i am happy when sharing or expressing pleases and connects me to the support, beauty, and love in others. i am empowered by attention and my gift is desire or epiphany.”

TRUST. interesting, because while i was sleeping, trust was definitely a theme in my dream. so i got to thinking about trust and did a little digging. it’s easy for me to trust the process, trust that things in my life will work out. that’s more of a MACRO VIEW. the MICRO VIEW of trust is on an individual level. The macro view can be seen and practiced with disregard to the micro view. maybe that’s where i want to be hanging out? the micro view is so much more complex and challenging. it can make my head spin. it seems sort of dependent on expectations and attachment to outcomes, but i still have to have trust in the individuals in my life. it’s tricky.

a trustor becomes completely dependent on the trustee. even if the trustee is trustworthy, the trustor is still vulnerable. being vulnerable and having uncertainty can be scary. there’s risk involved. regaining trust is difficult once it is lost, depending on the severity.

there is beauty in vulnerability, though. and there are certainly lessons to be learned in losing, gaining, and earning trust. i have come to understand that there is a relationship between being dependent and dependable on a quest for independence. likewise i think a person who is trustworthy may attract others who are trustworthy. it doesn’t mean people won’t disappoint or break our trust. if there aren’t any cracks, the light can’t shine through, right? it’s a slippery slope, though. deep cracks won’t hold water.

but what can you do? people are imperfect. just as there is beauty in vulnerability there is beauty in trusting unconditionally. that doesn’t mean closing the eyes and becoming blind. trust seems no less powerful than love.  funny how they accompany each other. without trust, how can a person love?

the nice thing about trust is that when you find out someone is untrustworthy, it isn’t necessary to keep them around. it’s okay to let go and find love and trust elsewhere, even if the only person you have to trust and love is yourself.

revised 2nd edition

i published the revised 2nd edition of my book, life is but a dream, the other day. yay! the cover is the same, but i changed the fonts, did some editing, and corrected some typos. i added an acknowledgments page and dedicated it. i’m so pleased with it. i’ve planned a book signing in dallas at the end of december. unfortunately, i don’t arrive there until christmas eve, so i’m hoping my friends will put my book in their holiday budget.

i carry it around with me everywhere and often have the opportunity to pull it out to show it off. last week after showing it to someone (who read the whole thing!), i got some really great feedback. it was really wonderful to hear what she took from it. i felt honored that she sat and read the whole thing. she said she couldn’t put it down. it put a smile on my face.  here’s what the cover looks like:

 

here you can see a preview of some of the pages.

it’s $30 with just regular paper, but $33 with premium. i like the premium matte finish paper, i’ve done both matte and luster.

ordinary magic

recently, i’ve been giving more of my attention to my dreams, waking and sleeping.  a couple of weeks ago on my way home late at night, i was deep in thought.  thinking of how disappointed i was that a relationship that seemingly had so much potential didn’t work out,  i felt betrayed that this person i trusted completely disappeared from my life.  it  made me question what i was doing with him in the first place.  my thoughts were interrupted.  from across the street a dog was running straight towards me barking viciously.

i had spent time over the last couple weeks working through exercises to let go of the anger, sadness, and hurt i felt.  i worked on breathing deeply, meditating, and writing.  i went to a dance class, immersed myself in books.

all of those things i did were helpful, but it wasn’t until after i screamed “NO!” with every fiber of my being twice at this scary dog that i really felt a release.  the dog backed off and ran back across the street.  i was relieved, not just because i wasn’t attacked, but because i realized that i needed to scream.  i didn’t only feel relieved, i felt empowered.  i felt closer to being myself again.

that night while sleeping, there were bulldogs in my dream.  friendly dogs, we were just hanging out.  in the morning i looked to see what bulldogs symbolize.  “…that some protective force is helping you move forward in life.”  it was reassuring.  most of the time i am aware of the connectivity of the universe at large, but i think i needed a reminder.  i needed to reconnect.

the same source says about viciously barking dogs:  “…conflict within yourself,  may also indicate betrayal and untrustworthiness.”

paying attention to the ordinary, everyday magic of the universe makes me feel whole.  it’s a special treat.  this is what life is, a dream, a gift.  the magic is all around us all the time.