The Quest for an Abudance in Sunshine

where you find: the key to happiness, personal experience, a redhead's poetry, book reviews, new science, nature, rock'n alt. medicine

Tag: creative writing

Let The Animal Inside Your Body Love What It Loves

I woke up again in the middle of the night after a four hour sleep, feeling anxious as if I was back in the restaurant. In my dream I was dropping the customer’s money, it was all getting mixed up, and they were all impatient – I already knew i wasn’t getting a tip from any table. It’s been like this almost every day for a month straight, and I’ve only worked there since the end of May. I am so unhappy as a server – it’s not as easy sounding as “delivering food” but I’m not here to justify why I feel so ashamed that I shut my eyes tightly, wrapped in my blanket, next to Eduardo. Tears seeped through the cracks of my eyelashes and spilled into my other eye. All I wanted was for those around me to have happiness. I’d been away from Florida almost 2 years. I have the things I wanted that I didn’t have – whenever I felt bad about my job, I wrote down the things I was grateful for. Remember when the trailer you lived in didn’t have a shower or place to wash dishes? Remember when you didn’t have a car, and you had to walk 11 miles to town just for a job that paid you under the table? I’ve been reading blogs about people who leave their lives in New York or some city, who leave their mortgage and their coveted 9-5 job for van life. I’d love a slower pace job, where I didn’t wear a uniform and run around refilling drinks hoping that guests left a dollar over 10%, to cover tipshare. Hoping I didn’t get sat a 17 big top. I’d love a job where I was at a desk, even if the hours dragged by, at least I’d be treated fairly. All I wanted was for those around me to have happiness – I was so grateful to have this apartment with my AC, and a place to shower, because I remembered having to take showers at my Aunt’s when I had the chance, and laying naked in the trailer, sweating in the Florida summer. It was so hard to find a job in my last town, but here in East Texas, you could pick one up at any glorified fast food place. And here I was, finally with the things I needed for basic survival, i could afford food and gas and the internet, a fridge, things most young people take for granted. And here I was, my soul silent, because I was so bitter. Bitter that my mom had to work to death. That Eduardo couldn’t make movies. That I wasn’t a writer like I dreamed of being since my earliest memory, stuffing receipts and envelopes into my great grandparents typewriter, so i could hear it chirp like a bird.

I am reluctant to leave my position for something that doesn’t pay as much. If you’re an experience server, and can handle waiting on 30 people, you bring home a lot of money. I know servers I work with bring home almost 500 dollars a week. Plus my 2.15/hr, I make at least 10/hr. But the stress – the abuse, sometimes it doesn’t bounce off me.

I’ve spoken to my manager each time I got overwhelmed, a brief one-on-one in his crammed office. He has a way of making decisions for me. I told him I wanted nothing more than to work a few times a week and that i’d find another job. “you want more hours? I’ll give you more hours. And there’s nothing to feel ashamed about not being able to handle this, we’ll give you a 4-table section.” But still, I was trapped in the weeds, and I could tell after messing up with that big top, he wanted to fire me. But he needed me to cover his split shifts – the lowest ranked shift on the totem pole.

I tell myself to stay positive, it’s money every day and if I do this for a year, I can go back to school. And then I started to cry, because there are so many symbols in my life that meant I wanted to reinvent myself. The violin I finally got, but can’t tune. The pharmacy technician trainee certificate, a sign that I wanted to be better at math. My hula-hoop, a plastic circle that symbolized my passion to dance. But I had tried to get into ballet, and that was too far. (You can read my other blog, HALO for that chapter) And all the blogs i printed out about living in a van and traveling, because I wanted to see my family, and because I wanted to go to the mountains.

I fought back tears because I knew that if deep down, I was not living my purpose, how tortured does Eduardo feel, not having the money to produce his movies? How does my mother feel, wanting to go to college, but not having the time or energy from her job?

And then, it struck me, that I should just pick up my violin, drive to the next town in my beat up Pontiac, and get it tuned, and play outside, and take online lessons. (violinlab.com offers in depth online tutoring for less than 25 bucks a month! )To drive to my friend’s house and ask her if I can borrow her ballet barre dvd and install a “barre” from the bamboo Eduardo cut down. That I should go to the library and print out the free pdf file from http://www.pharmacy-tech-test.com/pharmacy-tech-book.html, and buy the medical dosage calculations books and study. That I should buy an LED hoop so I can get lost in my flow.

And I kept thinking about all the books that affected my life. I’ve always believed that certain books come into your life at the time you need to read them. How at one point, I stopped reading fiction and poetry so I could read about war, history, and travel memoirs and spirituality and yoga. And I knew, deep down, I needed to write books.

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“Just Breathe”

>The breath is evidence that the mind and the body are connected. When you’re angry, you’re breath is quick. When you’re sad, you’re breath is different. Breathing is the fastest and most efficent way to find my center, even when I’m struggling with something difficult. It reminds me that I am not my emotions.

I’ve been practicing yoga for over a week, and I observed that I can make my body sit still, but my mind cannot. Soon, the thoughts in my head overthrow my pose. To correct myself, the only simple thing is to breathe. A spiritual teacher taught me to say “Sooo” when you inhale in your head, and on the exhale, “Ummmm” a deep vibrating tone. He explained that those words were the sound of my Self. Every one I met in Northern California told me I was an old soul. Is this why I’m looking so hard for something that I’m not sure even if it’s there, or what it is? Then I read that the breath is connected to your mind. You hear all the hype that yoga calms your mind, but my theory is that there’s something I have to do before that. I can’t participate in yoga until my mind is free.  My body is connected to my mind. And I’m connected to everything.

 

Remeber when I dug my fingers into the soil? On my knees, my wet hair drying under the sun, and it was like waking up from a dream, the next moment i let it slip through my fingers.

That was in May 2012. Weird how certain experiences change you.

A few days ago, I began research on the suppression of emotions. Yunno, I felt like that was a good direction to start in. I’m still in the beginning of my research, and I honestly don’t have all the questions answered. What happens to negative emotions when we don’t express ourselves? How do I reach my fullest potential? How do I express my soul? How do I lavish my heart’s desire?

 
and i know my grammer is shit b/c i’m typing this 100 words per minute, and I want to get out of this room.

Promises

I did my butt workouts. They felt energizing. There’s some questions I have that need to be answered tonight. I’ll have to wait until all the lights are out. Covert mode.

None of your business what I’ll be up to. Let’s just say, I’ll be wearing the fur of the animal I am most afraid of. I was outside looking up at the sky full of white clouds, and I tried to look at the broad picture, and see everything as a whole. I did the most glute push ups this evening than I have. I have a lifeline (instead of deadline) to have a sculpt body by the end of this month, along with employment.

I’m determined to get hired. I can sell shit, take orders, greet customers, handle money, and fix the internet. I need something temporary, for a couple of months to Level Up, before I head into my potential career.

 

Trying to explore all my options. Jeez, I should’ve figured this out by now?! But I was blown off course, torn apart. Once the darkness lifts, a warm flow fills my body and I’m out expressing my mind in other ways I thought I couldn’t, but you realize, it IS A WASTE to not use your mind, to not live your heart’s secret pleasures, and there’s a light underneath my skin penetrating through my pores, I raise my arm up slowly and tip my head back and dance.

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Narrative Craft…

Narrative Craft Monday!! Caution, this blog can be habit-forming

“I want hard stories, I demand them from myself. Hard stories are worth the difficulty. It seems to me the only way I have forgiven anything, understood anything, is through that process of opening up to my own terror and pain and reexamining it, re-creating it in the story, and making it something different, making it meaningful – even if the meaning is only in the act of telling.” – DOROTHY ALLISON

 

Dorothy Allisons strives to tell “the emotional truth of people’s lives, not necessarily the historical truth.”

 

I have a lot of experience with the writing process. Then one day I put down my pen and declared “Never Again.” Two years later, I pick the pieces up, realizing that I am nothing without my pen. Creation of a character, the pores of atmosphere, the cause of action or delay in action – this facilitates purpose. 

This blog provides me a file cabinent of storage room to write about what I experience, except the Pulitzer Prize winning novel is not going to describe a cathargic hippie. (OR will TRIM be that book? lol.) What I’m trying to get at is it’s not about the arbituary experiences that sum up moments, but about the actions that sum up the moment that changed your life forever.

It’s great exercize to write about what you know – but some writers fear this advice limits your imagination. Having suffered from a severe case of writer’s bloc, writing about personal experiences can be uplifting and theraputic. (Check that out on Poets & Writers, search “Writing therapy.”) It’s useful to keep a blog or a journal where you can record daily observations. I think your journal would be best kept in first person, it’s an honest light to write from. When you go to write about something that’s already happened, keep it to 100 word minimum. In essense, what have you summarized? A boring trip to the mall, or did you discover something that you really care about, like Rue 21’s spiked heels. Don’t they speak about performing your sexuality in this 21st centuary?

“Forget Inspiration. Habit is more dependable. Habit will sustain you whether you’re inspired or not. Habit will help you finish and polish your stories. Inspiration won’t. Habit is persistence in practice.” OCTAVIA BUTLER

Every character has motives. When you write about yourself, you’re motions are sparked by your Emotions. What do you want? What makes you sad? What changed you?

To my readers who are trying to get a leg up on the fiction pedestal, try this great exercize a few times this week:

 

We’re going to take a little seed and plant it in the ground. Take an experience from one of the following and write a passage about it. Then write one page of a story.

– an early memory — an unfounded fear — a scar — a bad haircut — a lawless night — yesterday — a sudden change in a relationship — the loss of a small object — an experience you don’t fully understand

 

Did you write something? I’d love to read what you wrote, just imagine me as like, an editor friend to give you practical wisdom on the narrative craft. We all deserve to feel good about ourselves, and if writing makes you happy, please share. Like the page. And keep updated for posts, especially on Monday’s, where I’ll share exclusive tips on the narrative craft.

 

Thanks for reading! love always, S.S.

 

 

 

 

“You manifest y…

Can I successfully explain this man full of light that I met by fate? It was a coincidence that I was on my way to travel 3000 miles back home. It was a coincidence that he loved nature like me. On our hour long drive to the bus station Tiger, he introduced himself, shared stories of his life in Hawaii. “The chief always eats last. A great king will make sure his people are fed first. But ah – what the king will eat! He will have a great feast.” He sang a song about Trinity County that he wrote for someone special. “You’ll find me, in Trin-ee-tee.”

I was amazed by this man’s profound faith. He was such a positive spirit. He was explaining how he would build a salmon house and leave it up, with the tools, so someone else who walks his path can utilize it to catch and eat good fish.

I said sheepishly, “You uh, you have a lot of faith. I mean, you walk in it.”

“You hit the nail on the head! That’s what my name means.” Not Tiger. He was referring to his long hawaiin name I can’t pronounce. Then he went on to tell me that his strong faith

in the power of beautiful nature will help it flourish, and help the world flourish. I agreed, admitting, “By taking care of the earth, her metabolism, in effect, we help our metabolism. Gardens were created as little paradises, not only to serve physical needs of man, but spiritual needs too.”

He was grateful to meet me. It was meant to be to sit beside a man called faith, NOT FIGURATIVELY SPEAKING. He told me I could create beautiful things, just plant a heirloom seed. How different would life be, if we respected the people we meet this way? With respect and appreciation for its existence, would we gain a better insight on how to respect and appreciate ourselves?

And taking his advice, do you realize how important your thoughts are?