Sunday, March 28, 2010

One Week (Barenaked Ladies)

So... when last we left our She-Ra, she had undergone a brain shift, such that she was determined to make better choices, one day at a time, until she began to take feeling and looking better for granted - I am pleased to say that, after one week, I am on the right track (pun semi-intended... :-)

Beginning last Saturday, I have accomplished the following... every single day:

~ eaten very mindfully and healthfully, mostly from my list of Brain Foods

~ not eaten after 9 p.m.

~ cut out almost all sugar from my diet, except the natural sugar found in fruit

~ consumed at least a half-gallon of water, sometimes more

~ taken my medications/supplements: blood pressure, thyroid, multi-vitamin, Calcium, Vitamin D, fish oil caplets, low-dosage aspirin

~ walked 40 minutes (then taken the dog out for another 10 minutes)

~ stretched after walking

So far, I have lost 3 pounds - it's a start. What is even more important is that I have more color in my skin, bounce in my step and clarity in my brain - Week 2 started yesterday, and I'm excited about continuing the momentum!

SONG: One Week by Barenaked Ladies

BOOK: You'll See It When You Believe It: The Way to Your Personal Transformation by Wayne W. Dyer

POEM: The Necessary Brevity of Pleasures by Samuel Hazo

Prolonged, they slacken into pain
or sadness in accordance with the law
of apples.
One apple satisfies.
Two apples cloy.
Three apples
Call it a tug-of-war between enough and more
than enough, between sufficiency
and greed, between the stay-at-homers
and globe-trotting see-the-worlders.
Like lovers seeking heaven in excess,
the hopelessly insatiable forget
how passion sharpens appetites
that gross indulgence numbs.
The haves have not
what all the have-nots have
since much of having is the need
to have.
Even my dog
knows that - and more than that.
He slumbers in a moon of sunlight,
scratches his twitches and itches
in measure, savors every bite
of grub with equal gratitude
and stays determinedly in place
unless what's suddenly exciting
Viewing mere change
as threatening, he relishes a few
undoubtable and proven pleasures
to enjoy each day in sequence
and with canine moderation.
They're there for him in waiting,
and he never wears them out.

QUOTE: “The moments of happiness we enjoy take us by surprise. It is not that we seize them, but that they seize us.” ~ Ashley Montagu

Saturday, March 20, 2010

Brane Ded, Body MT (David Stocker)

You must all be tired of reading about my Epiphany du jour... whereupon I have a life-changing, light bulb moment... and swear I'm going to do everything *the right way* from now on... only to find I have fallen off the proverbial wagon yet again - this one's different... I swear!

I was having a relaxed Friday evening, curled up with What Not to Wear (a guilty pleasure) and then my book (a Tabitha King novel) - at 11, I happened to turn the TV back on, began to scroll through the channels and ran across a program on PBS: Change Your Brain, Change Your Body. Dr. Amen (gotta love that name) himself was lecturing on the various steps in which we can bring about change, based on his new book (of course) and, naturally, I know most of this stuff - I take fish oil caplets and Vitamin D supplements... I realize broccoli is better for me than donuts... I am aware I should exercise on a regular basis...

I wasn't particularly swayed by his definitions of brain types... but when he asked the question: what is your motivation?... I experienced mental whiplash - all these years I've attempted to sculpt my habits, my waistline and my attitude... and I've never really confronted myself with WHY...

Short-term: Falcon Ridge (late-July 2010)... and my daughter's wedding (at least a year down the road) - long-term: to see my kids grow up, get married (or not) and have children (or not). I want to be healthy for myself... but really, my family is the best reason there is - e-f*cking-piphany...

I've eaten healthy (so far), I walked my 2 1/2 miles (40 minutes)... and I am drinking enough water to float a battleship - plus... I am choosing to eliminate sugar from my diet (I can do this... :-)

SONG: Brane Ded, Body MT by David Stocker (I can't seem to find the lyrics online, but the CD, to listen to the song clip, is here)...

BOOK: Change Your Brain, Change Your Body: Use Your Brain to Get and Keep the Body You Have Always Wanted by Daniel G. Amen M.D.

POEM: The Heart of Herakles by Kenneth Rexroth

Lying under the stars,

In the summer night,

Late, while the autumn

Constellations climb the sky,

As the Cluster of Hercules

Falls down the west

I put the telescope by
and watch Deneb
Move towards the zenith.

My body is asleep. Only

My eyes and brain are awake.

The stars stand around me

Like gold eyes, I can no longer

Tell where I begin and leave off.

The faint breeze in the dark pines,
And the invisible grass,

The tipping earth, the swarming stars

Have an eye that sees itself.

QUOTE: "We live in deeds, not years; In thoughts, not breaths; In feelings, not in figures on a dial. We should count time by heart-throbs. He most lives who thinks most, feels the noblest, acts the best." ~ Phillip James Bailey

Monday, March 8, 2010

Live Forever (Billy Joe Shaver)

My husband and I saw Crazy Heart a few weeks ago - for more on the subject, see my Star Maker Machine post (and how wonderful that Jeff Bridges did indeed win the Oscar last night for Best Actor!)...

My middle child/older son got in some major trouble in late-January, which could have had substantially-tragic results... but we were all lucky, and it appears he's seen it for the big-*ss wake-up call it is... and is in process of making some definitive changes to turn his life around - the tune below, a snippet of which is sung a cappella by Robert Duvall's character in the film, made me think of Rob... and I dedicate today's post to him, sending perpetual love and continued purple candles...

SONG: Live Forever by Billy Joe Shaver

BOOK: The Fifth Agreement: A Practical Guide to Self-Mastery by don Miguel Ruiz and don Jose Ruiz

POEM: no one expects you to save the world by Maya Stein

The headlines are begging for your help. Thousands needing homes, food.
But here, your own children, like inexpert stilt-walkers, flirt too often
with obstacles in the street. It’s no wonder you keep eyes glued
to them. The demands of love, or a job, the hard winter reining you in -
it takes all your muscle to keep your own life upright. And though you know
what you have is fortune compared to the great rift that earthquake left,
and the aftershocks continuing to destroy so much, somehow
that same fortune paralyzes, obstructs you with a heavy, gloomy guilt.
But no one expects you to save the world, no matter what you plan.
Sometimes the best thing we can do is to love everything we can.

QUOTE(S): “Though no one can go back and make a brand new start, anyone can start from now and make a brand new ending." ~ Anonymous

“Remember, we all stumble, every one of us. That’s why it’s a comfort to go hand in hand.” ~ Emily Kimbrough

"It doesn't matter what people tell you. It doesn't matter what they might say. Sometimes you have to leave home. Sometimes, running away means you're headed in the exact right direction." ~ Alice Hoffman, Practical Magic

Thursday, March 4, 2010

I've Just Seen a Face (The Beatles)

My friend request message, sent over the last day and a half: "It's officially The Apocalypse - I've joined Facebook!" - loosely translated: "What in the f*ck did I just do?!?" I finally signed up so that I could view my daughter's Europe pictures and live vicariously through her experience - I never envisioned quite such a headfirst tumble down the rabbit hole...

I have been fighting Facebook kicking and screaming for years - my main defense/objection has been... if I can't keep up with the "real people" in my life (and I'm always in overwhelmed mode), how in the world can I made the time to connect/reconnect with friends all over the country/world... not to mention acquaintances from my past?

I have a MySpace account (begun in December 2007) but, really, it's in the name of my concert series - it isn't about me personally at all, but rather a good PR tool to promote, and keep up with, the music...

I also have this blog, started in May 2007 - I use it as a journal/scrapbook/exercise in creativity. I'd like to post more often but seem to lose track of time - comments from readers (what readers?) are immaterial to me, as I'm really just downloading what's in my heart/brain/soul at the moment...

But Facebook? - in my less-than-48-hours experience with the social network, I have learned that it is truly In Your (or My) Face! It has been a pendulum from fun to frightening and back again... as I vowed to start out slow... which snowballed into "just one more" (friend, that is) - it's exhilarating to read all the repeated "welcome" messages (makes me think of Dar's "we're so glad that you finally made it here" lyric)... but it's exhausting to consider the effort it takes to reply and follow-up... not to mention the trepidation of opening various Pandora's Boxes...

High School? - ack! Suffice it to say, since it was 68-72, my memories are vague - I recall being high every day of my senior year, yet making the Honor Roll every quarter. I remember football games (with dances following), a handful of amazing girlfriends and being on the annual staff as well as head of props for our senior play, "The Matchmaker" - I also recall tubing down the Chattahoochee River (with a beer cooler in tow), a few special guy relationships... but also a less-than-full social calendar. I can't remember who I was back then - even more interesting, part of me is now wondering who I was in the eyes of others (in terms of The Breakfast Club... I was more Ally Sheedy than Molly Ringwald... :-)

So... although, as I said in a reply earlier today, "balance is not my strong suit", I have vowed to enjoy the experience while still motivating myself to handle all the day-to-day stuff it's easy to let slip by the proverbial wayside - I have to finish the folk club newsletter (already 4 days late), clean house tomorrow for dinner guests... and prepare for the concert I'm presenting Saturday night (not to mention catch up on various e-mails owed)...

In the meantime, though... I'm delighted at the thought of so many special people (friends and family) from all aspects of my life being in one place - it's a big-*ss cross-pollination... and I can't help but sport a broad smile across my (I should be reading a Book) Face (although I'm wary of the poke, whatever the h*ll that is... :-)

SONG: I've Just Seen a Face by The Beatles

BOOK(S): Ophelia Joined the Group Maidens Who Don't Float: Classic Lit Signs on to Facebook by Sarah Schmelling

Facebook Me! A Guide to Having Fun with Your Friends and Promoting Your Projects on Facebook by Dave Awl

POEM: Remember by Joy Harjo

Remember the sky that you were born under,
know each of the star's stories.
Remember the moon, know who she is. I met her
in a bar once in Iowa City.
Remember the sun's birth at dawn, that is the
strongest point of time. Remember sundown
and the giving away to night.
Remember your birth, how your mother struggled
to give you form and breath. You are evidence of
her life, and her mother's, and hers.
Remember your father. He is your life also.
Remember the earth whose skin you are:
red earth, black earth, yellow earth, white earth
brown earth, we are earth.
Remember the plants, trees, animal life who all have their
tribes, their families, their histories, too. Talk to them,
listen to them. They are alive poems.
Remember the wind. Remember her voice. She knows the
origin of this universe. I heard her singing Kiowa war
dance songs at the corner of Fourth and Central once.
Remember that you are all people and that all people are you.
Remember that you are this universe and that this universe is you.
Remember that all is in motion, is growing, is you.
Remember that language comes from this.
Remember the dance that language is, that life is.

QUOTE: “It’s surprising how much of memory is built around things unnoticed at the time.” ~ Barbara Kingsolver