Faces of Depression, Day 25

Another long day dealing with the DMV, including an unexpected trip to another DMV office because the first one was having computer issues and couldn’t access the information necessary to register my car. But it’s all done now and I won’t have to deal with it again for another 2 years.

My anxiety went up as the day wore on, again related to money matters. Not having the time to pursue business leads or apply for jobs because I’m stuck in lines is frustrating and stresses me out. I think there is a part of me that likes the heightened stress/anxiety because I seem to put myself in these situations so often. I need to knock it out.

Today had some lows and highs, but all in all I’d say it was a 5 out of 10.

Took this photo after they announced the delays at the DMV. I'm tired and over it. Today was a 5 out of 10.
Took this photo around 11 am, right after they announced the delays due to computer system problems at the DMV. I’m tired and over it. Today was a 5 out of 10.

Site is fixed!

I finally fixed my site today. I still am not completely sure how I figured it out, but it involved using SSH on PuTTY and WP CLI and a bunch of other acronyms I can’t remember. The end result is that my plugins & themes are updated.
I am so relieved & happy.
Now back to laying about and relaxing.

Friday’s Hot Tip: Humor

I tend to randomly break out into song about various things, such as feeding Mossimo, getting my Bluetooth headset enabled (this is usually a duet with T-Wizzle), or my newfound love of coffee. So when those crazy kids at Improv Everywhere did a musical in a food court, I was enthralled. Like any good musical, there’s comedy, drama, suspense…and the end leaves you reeling with pleasure. Here performing “Can I Get a Napkin Please?” are 16 agents from Improv Everywhere. Take it away, kids!

Oh, and the hot tip, you ask? Laugh more, and when life gets challenging, sing through it.

All A-Twitter

I have really gotten into Twitter since I started my new job. For those of you who don’t know about Twitter, a few social marketing folks have referred to it as “microblogging”, because postings are in real-time and can only be 140 characters in length.

Whatever you want to call it, I find it to be lots of fun and a great way to keep tabs on people. I’m just nosy like that. Using Twitter I’ve been able to have mini-dialogues with various writers, technogeeks, and bloggers who could prove to be helpful in my work. And whenever technology can help me be successful, I’m all over it.

Anyway, I’ve signed up for an account for this blog, so if you are on Twitter, please add me as someone to follow and I will likely reciprocate. Unless you’re gross, in which case I will avoid you like the plague.

The Six Word Memoir

Historical Wit, a frequent reader of this blog, tagged me a few weeks ago for the six-word memoir meme. Beth did this meme a while back and it was then that I started thinking about what I would write…but never came up with anything that really felt right.

In this moment, I’ve chosen six words based on everything that’s happened to me over the last few months, and how I am working to experience the world.

I believe in a magical universe.
Yeah, that works.

For My Sister from Another Mister

It’s hard when your best friend is going through a rough time and you can’t physically be there to help them move through it. Right now T-Wizzle is in a lot of emotional pain, and it makes me wish I knew how to teleport or had a superfast invisible jet so we could go out for lattes and cocktails and karaoke, sit and cry together, or browse at Sephora.

I thought about what Beth did for her friend Renae a few months ago…how kind that was, and how several of Beth’s readers reached out with kind words to someone that they didn’t know, but whom they know is important to Beth. If you’ve been reading my blog for a while, then you know just how much T-Wizzle means to me. She’s truly my sister from another mister, and when she’s hurting I hurt too. I also want to punch people in the face if they mess with her, but that’s another issue.

Anyway, I’m posting this video clip from The Color Purple in her honor. She gave me this song as an MP3 ages ago, when I was going through a rough patch of my own, so I’m tossing it back at her to say I’m thinking of her and I am sending her all the moxie she needs at this time.

If you feel so inclined to leave some kind words for T-Wizzle in the comments, please do. I know she will appreciate it.

Friday’s Hot Tip(s): Relationships

It’s actually Sunday when I’m writing this – the first week on the job was pretty intense. I suppose I could schedule the post for this coming Friday, but what fun would that be?

Lately I’ve been talking to a lot of people about romantic relationships. It seems we’ve all been struggling with love on some level, and trying to connect with someone while still maintaining our own identity can be really difficult at times. I’ve thought about it a great deal, had many discussions with T-Wizzle on the topic, and I’ve decided to do something a little different with this week’s Hot Tip. It’s actually five tips on how to make relationships work, as conceived by me. Feel free to expand on these or offer revisions in the comments.

1. Determine whether you’re a provider or nurturer. Regardless of gender, race, ethnicity, or socioeconomic status, people tend to fall into one of two groups: provider (the one who works and provides the financial structure for the family unit) and nurturer (the person who nurtures family members and offers emotional support). It’s been my experience that we get into trouble when we try to force ourselves to be a nurturer when we’re really much more comfortable as a provider, or vice versa. In relationships, this can also show up as insisting that the other person take on a provider role because we believe that we are a nurturer, for example. Figure out what you are, and be okay with it.

2. Honor your flow as well as your partner’s flow. Whenever I say “honor your flow” to people, they look at me as if I’m insane. What I mean by this is “do what feels right for you.” Part of honoring your flow, though, requires that you take responsibility for your actions and be prepared to handle the consequences. Sounds a bit heavy, I know, but if you’re coming at a relationship with an open, loving heart and mind, this isn’t that difficult.

3. Don’t make yourself wrong, and don’t make your partner wrong either. As I recently wrote here, we’re not here to get things perfect. I try to come at life from the perspective that we’re all doing the best that we can in any moment, even if that seems hard to believe sometimes. No one ever wants to feel wrong for things they have done or not done, said or not said. In a relationship, you owe it to yourself and your partner to understand that their behavior is not an indication of your worth as a person. Sounds easy to understand intellectually, but emotionally, it can be tough.

4. Accept the present. In relationships it’s so easy to get caught up in the future. “How serious is he? Does he want to move in with me? Will she be the mother of my children? When will we get married?” and so on. If you’re constantly thinking about the future, it is damn hard to be in the moment while you’re sipping Frappuccinos on your third date with Cindy Lou.

5. Enjoy yourself. This is closely tied with #4. If you’re really in the present moment, all the pressure is off. You can just be yourself and have a good time. Maybe Cindy Lou isn’t the right woman for you…but the barista with the cute smile might be.

My Last Day of "Freelancing"

Tomorrow I start my new job, and while I’m excited about this plot twist, I’m also going to miss the laziness of my days “freelancing” from home. The quotation marks are because I wasn’t the most diligent freelancer – sure, I had a few assignments, but not enough to keep up the lifestyle I would like. Gotta go be a grown-up now, or at least look like one.

Here’s a rundown of what I have done so far today (times are approximate):

5:23 a.m. – Wake up and squint at the clock across the room, then go back to sleep.
8:47 a.m. – Wake up again and try to remember dreams. Wonder where Mossimo is and why he won’t sleep on the bed. Think about past weekend and grin like an idiot.
9:00 a.m. – Get out of bed.
9:02 a.m. – Find Mossimo in living room and a small dried puddle of cat barf. Look around for more cat barf and feel glad not to find any, but wonder if maybe it’s under the bed. Get grossed out but still stop looking for cat barf.
9:05 a.m. – Pour food into Mossimo’s bowl and listen to him meow his needs. Wonder for the millionth time why he has been so clingy the past few weeks, and chalk it up to missing the constant boy energy that Joe provided.
9:08 a.m. – Sit in front of computer and begin checking e-mail, blogs, and other websites. Push Mossimo off leg and tell him NO CLAWS.
9:17 a.m. – Go to bathroom. Think again about past weekend and grin some more.
9:20 a.m. – Pull on sweater and make bed. Consider buying new blanket to replace ancient, ratty one that has the silky edging I love. Decide to be open to buying new blanket but still keep ratty one in closet.
9:47 a.m. – Go back to sitting at computer. Push Mossimo off leg again, then pick him up for a few minutes while reading advice columns and My Yahoo page. See T-Wizzle on messenger program and wonder if class is over early.
9:52 a.m. – Put down Mossimo on couch, knowing full well he is pissed at being put down. Get pizza out of fridge. Grab slice and put mustard on pepperoni slices, just like T-Wizzle taught me. Wonder if other people besides me, T-Wizzle, and her dad actually put mustard on pepperoni pizza.
9:57 a.m. – Get second slice of pizza, then put away box. Think again about weekend.
10:04 a.m. – Decide to have some root beer, wondering if it’s inappropriate to have root beer before noon on a weekday. Decide I don’t care and proceed to pour glass. Wonder why root beer gets so foamy. Add ice to glass and grab straw.
10:07 a.m. – Catch up on Bad Tempered Zombie, Gifted Typist, and Arjewtino blogs. Get annoyed that there isn’t anything new yet on Cup of Coffey. Marvel again at the wittiness of my favorite bloggers. Fantasize about meeting them in person and having cocktails.
10:10 a.m. – Read horoscope for day and check weather. Fantasize about new clothes I will buy for work, play, and social engagments.
10:21 a.m. – Send message to T-Wizzle and ask about class. When she says they worked on group projects, ask if she circled the room like Tim Gunn [“Project Runway” mentor] or Tom Colicchio [“Top Chef” mentor], offering sage advice and “make it work”-type comments.
10:26 a.m. – Briefly discuss T-Wizzle’s personal challenges and tell her she has my full support. Feel glad that I have such an awesome best friend, even if we are geographically challenged.
10:31 a.m. – Push Mossimo’s paws off leg and say NO CLAWS. Refuse to hold him.
10:35 a.m. – Decide that a carpool to LA is in definite need of manifesting until I can manifest a place to live in LA that is close to work. Get excited over living in LA. Think again about last weekend and grin.
10:41 a.m. – Consider what needs to be done today and what can be put off. Think about doing taxes and groan. Continue to surf Internet while drinking root beer and talking to T-Wizzle.
11:04 a.m. – Offer to mail a tiara to T-Wizzle to help her believe in her fabulousness. When she refuses, attempt Jedi mind trick. Get disappointed when it doesn’t work and she changes the subject.
11:06 a.m. – Open door for loudly meowing Mossimo and let him go outside.
11:12 a.m. – Look out window and wonder where Mossimo went. Put on flip-flops and go outside to find him lying by the mailboxes, purring and enjoying the sunshine. Laugh at all the pollen and dirt in his fur and attempt to brush some off. Head back inside.
11:17 a.m. – Look up how to spell Tom Colicchio’s last name. Consider his sexiness and wonder if he’s single. Decide not to ruin the fantasy by looking to see if he is married.
11:21 a.m. – Hear loud meowing and discover that Mossimo is back inside. Ask him if he enjoyed himself and get a meow in response.
11:33 a.m. – Realize that real-time blogging is hard when you are a perfectionist about your words. Decide this may be a one-time exercise.
11:45 a.m. – Discuss Twitter with T-Wizzle as a tool for staying connected. Remember that Twitter was mentioned in job interview and wonder again how it could be used for PR efforts. File in back of head for later use.
11:57 a.m. – Let Mossimo go back outside in response to his scratching on the screen door. Look at the cigarette butts on the ground and get annoyed with neighbors who don’t clean up after themselves.
12:14 a.m. – Remember that it is time to do a Tarot reading for the month of April, where I pull one card for each week and one card as an overview for the month. Wonder if the reading will be positive.
12:16 a.m. – Decide to stop real-time blogging and do something else.

Love Me!

Recently I discovered these ’60s classics…maybe you’ve seen them. If it’s been a while, you need to see them again.

Friday’s Hot Tip: What’s Cookin’?

I like it when I can cook a really tasty meal using only one pot or pan. Being a fan of pasta and rice dishes makes one-pot cooking next to impossible at times. I’m not particularly inventive, either.

But one night a couple months ago I was looking at my canister of bulgur wheat, a whole grain that doesn’t have much personality on its own. Momcat would cook it as cereal occasionally, and with some milk and honey or maple syrup, it’s not too bad. As a side dish, though, it needs some love. I gotta do something with this stuff, I thought, as I stared at the container. So I started poking through the pantry and the fridge…and came up with this really tasty dish. I don’t have a name for it; if you think of one, put it in the comments.

1-1 1/2 T olive oil
4-6 cloves garlic, peeled
1/2 red onion, sliced
1/4 t ground black pepper
1/4 t salt
2 C chicken breast, uncooked, cut into bite size pieces
2 C chicken broth
1 T lemon juice
1 C bulgur wheat, uncooked
no-salt seasoning (Mrs. Dash or equivalent)

Heat the olive oil in a large skillet. Add garlic, onion, salt and pepper. Lower the heat, allowing the onion to reduce and the garlic to soften. After the onion has become more translucent, add the chicken and saute – increase the heat to medium, stirring the mixture frequently. Once the chicken is no longer pink, add the broth, lemon juice, and no-salt seasoning, then the bulgur wheat. Stir well, then cover and reduce heat to low. Let stand for 20-25 minutes. Bulgur wheat should be chewy but slightly firm to the bite.

Serves approximately 3-4 people, depending on how hungry they are. This is very garlic-tastic, so you may want to have mint ice cream for dessert, or hand out breath mints.

Try it out and tell me what you think!