Sunday, January 30, 2011


Why do we have feelings?

Someone posed this very simple question on Face Book the other day. There was already a comment or two by the time I saw this post. It seemed like a real question, but the comments weren't taking it seriously. Of course I know the person who posed the question to begin with. It's a confusing time for this person. I couldn't help it, I had to jump in.

So, why do we have feelings? The question is simple enough, no? The basic answer is too. Aren't our feelings supposed to be triggers for us? How else can we know the difference between right and wrong? Good and bad. It is through our feelings that we know not to take that candy bar without paying for it. How we know comforting a crying child is the right thing to do. We instinctively know if our feelings are suddenly in turmoil what we are doing or experiencing is not good for us. It's all so simple.

Pretty much.

The problem with it all starts when we begin to ignore our feelings. Or we lie to ourselves. Well, we do it every day. Knowingly or not. I over eat for example. I know I really need to lose some weight and get back to the gym. I know it every day. I don't feel the best about myself though, so I ignore it. I eat to stuff some feelings. Some people are in bad relationships. Every day something doesn't feel good. Every day is full of worry about what might happen today. What stops us from getting out, from making changes? For some it's a fear of being alone. A fear of not being loved. Some people believe they don't deserve better. Or that having better is impossible. In any case we are always fighting our feelings.

I wonder why?

You already are the best possible person you can be. You may not see it or feel it, but it's there. The true path of your existence is already inside of you. Everything you need to live a truly contented life is just waiting for you to put your hand out and grasp it. The thing is you have to bring it out. You have to want it. You have to do the work. You have to be mindful of it. No one else. No group, therapist, priest, or sooth sayer can do it for you. Oh people can help, but really it's just lonely ol' you.

That might seem like a scary thought, being open and honest with yourself. Once you are, once you do the work and learn that you are already perfect; the struggle for self improvement ceases and you are able to release perfection that is you.

I'm pulling for ya.


Friday, January 21, 2011

A Quick One

It's 3:13a.m. Sunday January 2nd. I have two hours and forty-seven minutes left to my shift. When I walk out of here at 6:00 I will have ended my time as the Night Guy. I wonder what it will be like. It's only been two years but, it's become part of me. Will I be able to sleep next Thursday night, my first night not working? What will the weekend look like I wonder. The last 104 weekends have been pretty much a blur. Little sleep and lots of work.

It is now Friday night January 14th. This is my second Friday not working the night shift. To be honest I'm sort of discounting my first week of normalcy. Seems I was extremely tired. I slept at the drop of a hat. One minute I'd be watching TV, the next id be waking up wondering what time it was.

It is almost the 20th now. I have continued writing this post in my head over and over. Some one will say something that will trigger my thoughts toward this blog. I'll think, "That's IT. That's what I'll write about". I have been putting it off though for some reason. I couldn't figure it out for the longest time. I think I've got it though.

I auditioned for a play recently. There was a time when I was involved in theater in one way or another year round. I had performed various tasks in community theater for years. I have acted, directed, stage managed, produced, built sets and hung lights. I really enjoy giving people the chance to see something new in themselves or others through live theater. I used to have this picture in my head during a performance of this self contained shell. The glow of the lights shining on the stage illuminating the faces of the audience in a darkened theater. This private world shared by the actors and the audience floating suspended some where all on it's own. Every one learning or experiencing something new. The actors and audience share this bond of learning. Though every performance presents the same lines, the same blocking, the same scene changes, each performance is different. Each audience take away something new. I love the process of learning the lines. The blocking. The muscle memory. I love giving the author's words meaning. I think that last part is the key to my dragging my feet about completing this post.

The author's words. See it's not me right? I assume this roll and let loose with some one else's words, and even though it was undoubtedly me writing Notes it was through the Night Guy. We are in Act II of our story and the Night Guy has no lines. Does this make any kind of sense? When I first realized I would be giving up the night shift I kind of asked around about whether I should keep the title of this blog the same or if I should change it. There was no strong consensus. So unless I get a flood of objections or spontaneous wailing in the streets breaks out, I will keep the name the same.

Next time we'll get back to discussing life and it's ups and downs. I just wanted to get this quick one under my belt as I wonder what Act II will bring.

As the temperatures here head for the single digits, keep your stick on the ice.


Sunday, January 2, 2011

Have I Told You Lately That I Love You?

It's New Year's Eve day. My heart is pretty heavy right this minute. Gwen and I sit on a long black bench in the Veterinarian's office waiting our turn. She's in a pet carrier. The carrier is not used very often. I have the feeling neither of us is looking forward to this particular visit.

She is a long hair domestic we picked up from our neighbor across the street. He's an old man from the old country. Sicily to be exact. He is a man who knows about coaxing a bounty from the Earth in many ways. About ten years ago he had a sign hanging from his mailbox which read "Free Kit Kats". I guess we hadn't quite reached our quota of animals roaming the wilds of our house and yard for I was soon dispatched to go and pick one out. I don't remember the exact moment of picking her out; I'm pretty sure it was the cute face with it's multi-colored fur that did it though.

She's an outdoor cat who loves nothing more than to be petted and cuddled. The only problem is is that the cuddling can quickly become a swat and scratch game to find out if you've lost any quickness in your response time. Well, that and the surprise bites to the hand. Some don't like the game. Others understand that she is doing all of this on her own terms. She is a cat after all. She was raised with dogs around. In many ways I think she considers herself a dog. If you happened to have the chance to take the dogs for a walk and took a peek behind you you would see Gwen trailing behind as though wondering where her leash is. And lest I forget, she is quite the huntress. I guess I'm happy to say that she always leaves me the very best bits. I do mean the very best if you get my drift. Oh, and she's a talker too. Call her and she trots over meowing her response.

Her puffy hair and her weight always varies with the seasons. It was no surprise when she seemed to get heavier and furrier some time in early November. After a few weeks the girth around he middle was growing. She had been acting normal otherwise. Eating, pooping etc. So we wait a few more weeks.

We are now in the examination room. It's been a long wait.

Well, there are two possibilities. Either there is a tumor, or she is full of fluid. A simple test reveals she's full to the brim with fluid. The Vet tells me this is pretty common in older cats. Her internal organs are failing in some way. We could drain the fluid and probably do it again in a few weeks. Otherwise it could be an extremely long row to hoe to find out exactly what's going on. She's extremely uncomfortable and having a hard time breathing.

I have come home with the pet carrier empty.

Wondering why I tell you all this? Certainly don't want you to feel bad for Gwen. Certainly not for me either.

Just a reminder I guess. A plea maybe? Besides the tricks we teach them or the cute ways they beg from us, the one thing our pets know for sure is the happiness and love they bring into our lives. We spend untold hours reinforcing our relationships with our pets. Have you told you husband or wife, your significant other lately. Or your kids? For absolutely no reason? Do your loved ones know for sure? Do they know your love is unconditional? Not sure? Well, why don't you stop what you're doing and tell them right now. Turn away from the computer for a second, make a quick phone call, gather a family meeting. I'll wait right here until you get back... No really, I mean it, now get going...

Everything ok? No major injuries? Keep it up. Let 'em know. Make sure they know all the time.

Keep your stick on the ice.

Happy New Year!