Monthly Archives: October 2012

Dogs and Life

Today at the dog park my pup was injured.  He was slammed against a cement cylinder whilst running full-speed chasing one of his girlfriends.  I rushed him to the vet, who determined he either got a bad sprain or a slight tear in the dog equivalent of the ACL.

I’m ridiculously relieved that my pup didn’t fracture his hip or knee, and as he lays here next to me I’m grateful to have the resources and the heart to rush to him the vet for help.

With the stress and cost of the veterinary medicine I’m taught what a serious responsibility it is caring for another life.  This lesson is a harsh reality check but it’s made me more realistic and responsible in regards to serious matters of health and well being of others.    Without the experiences of caring for the many dogs, cats, rats, and sugar gliders that I’ve fostered at different times, I would not be nearly as conscientious of the emotional, physical, and financial commitments of being a caregiver.

I am a very maternal young woman.  I gain a unique satisfaction and love for the world when caring for animals or even people.  I believe many women get similar maternal urges when they get to their early or mid-twenties, and several women choose to get pregnant and start a family as a result.  I know a handful of women who have done just this, and that’s awesome for them.

Through the many experiences of taking animals to the vet, paying vet bills, dealing with dog-sitting, dealing with troublesome animals, worrying, feeding, loving all these creatures, I’ve learned the serious nature of being wholly responsible for another life.

For this reason, I’m waiting until I have money, education, and time to make human babies.  I want to have a child or two, but I understand how much of a commitment it can be.  If my kid has an attitude problem I can’t take him back to the pound.  If they get sick it’s horribly worrying and expensive, and we can’t just euthanize the poor bastards like many pet owners chose to do today.

I think it’s great that many women have found security enough to start a family, but I am not ready.

My heart pounded and I had to swallow tears because my pup injured his leg, and the vet put me out almost two hundred dollars.  If I didn’t have the money, or if I didn’t have a car or nerves, I would have been totally screwed.

It’s hard for me to imagine having a little darling baby, so fragile and precious, who may need health care right off the bat.  Not too mention clothes, diapers, education, food, housing…

Babies are no picnic!

I’m thankful to understand the seriousness of caring for another life and to have had so many wonderful animals to teach me this lesson.

I’m happy taking care of my doggie and taking him to the vet, and as a result I’m waiting quite a while to have a child.

Bernard, my love

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Good Things This Morning

So today as been surprisingly awesome so far.  And I should mention that having a good day that starts first thing when I wake up is extraordinarily rare.  Usually I wake up late, have to take care of a hyper-active puppy whilst getting myself to look presentable before rushing out the door cursing with a granola bar in hand.

Today was a lovely exception and I thought I’d share just because there’s no one else is here besides the pup to brag to.

So for today I’ll mention some More Happiness .

Note: A couple of these things occurred last night. I usually don’t drink in the mornings, not heavily anyways.

Happiness is…

Weird, captivating dreams.

Two, perfectly fried over-easy eggs and perfectly toasted toast.

Bernard (my doggie) when he’s not being a whiner, beggar, or turd-burglar.

A white russian and intriguing romance flick with a good friend.

Friendly neighbors saying hello.

Gorey, cheesy horror movies.

My Honda when it’s NOT making painful noises.

Two surprise tickets to an AWESOME Halloween concert.

Plans for pumpkin carving.

Curtis Mayfield’s “Move On Up” while I apply mascara.

Good things happening in the morning.

Appreciation of those good things.

AND David Bowie, of course.

Dammit, I need to appreciate these good things more often.

This is how I usually feel in the morning

How I feel today.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I hope you’ve had a good morning too.  If it’s been a typical cruddy one, put on a record, read a poem, jump on the bed, or do all three! Have a good weekend folks.

 

 

 

 

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Anxieties of the FUTURE

I am a fifth year senior, and I’ve committed my final semester to projects that will prepare me for LIFE.

I’ve applied for a program mentoring at-risk youth and I’m trying to find an NGO where I can intern, gain some experience, and do something positive with myself.

I love the prospect of growing and developing as an individual.  And I like the idea of a big-girl job.  But admittedly, I’m freakin’ nervous.

I haven’t had real responsibility (besides school) since I was the only waitress at a struggling pizza joint in high school.  Even then, I wasn’t getting paid so any moment I could’ve walked out.  I love a good challenge and I’m looking forward to the next phase of my life, but I’m scared. What if I FAIL? What if I bite off more than I can chew?  What if I’m on the wrong path and I end up hating the field I have my sights on?

There are so many choices, so many different opportunities, and I’m thankful for every one of them.  But dammit, I’m overwhelmed.  I keep saying in my head “don’t screw this up, don’t screw this up”.

A part of me is nervous that I’ll hate working with NGOs and dealing with the bureaucracy that comes with overseas development projects.  Another part of me is terrified that I won’t be the expert traveler I was when I was younger. Another part is scared that I’ll meet somebody and fall in love and abandon my dreams to make babies and go everywhere my future spouse wants to go. The list goes on.

When I get these feelings of anxiety and utter fear, I stop, breathe, and give myself a mental hug. Lame, I know. But I mean, what good is worrying and obsessing and constantly doubting myself?

I know a few people who have similar anxieties about graduating, and all I can suggest is chilling out, and doing something today that might help you in the future. Quell your worries with action.

Whether you type up or polish your resume, scan the help wanted section, or brainstorm some visions of the future, those are all positive ways to relax.  Get coffee with a friend and imagine where you’ll be in 10 years. Read about graduate programs.  Look into volunteer opportunities. Write a list of your passions and go partake in one of them. Let yourself have some fun and be productive at the same time.

Stop the doubt, avoid the negativity.

Dream big, set goals, challenge yourself! Let yourself grow and change, let yourself try different things and experiment.  We only have one life to live, so we might as well take some risks and make an adventure out of it.

 

Go ahead, leap off. It’ll be fun.

A little help goes a long way

Today I woke up, groggy and annoyed by that certain I don’t know what.  I had a HUGE list of things to do. Write a resume, read a billion pages, write three papers… fun stuff.  So, naturally, I sat on the couch and watched football.

The anxiety continued and I just felt “ugh”.

I finally plopped down with bad TV on in the background and began typing up a resume I’ll be needing for several endeavors in the coming weeks.

It was being a complete pain in the ass. Do I say this? Do I add this? Do I sound too vague here? Do I sound like an egotistical turd here? I had no idea what I was doing.  On top of that, getting the format just right had me so frustrated and mad I had to open the window to let the Autumn air cool my boiling blood.

Then, like a little answer from the spirits above, somebody came home and with only a smile and a bottle beer, turned my horrible mood around.

We sat on the couch and while he watched some silly action flick, I continued to type away, and as I encountered a roadblock and made disgruntled noises, my friend would say “Lemme see. Try this, or this… that looks good, change that…”

Slowly but surely, a beer, one glass of wine, and a couple slices of pizza later, my resume was complete.  And it wasn’t awful, in fact, it was pretty alright, and I feel fairly confident in applying to a program mentoring troubled youth tomorrow.

I know I could have done this myself, but the truth is that my friend helped me more than they know.

It’s wonderful how kind words of encouragement and couple helpful pointers can truly transform a daunting and unenjoyable task.

Thank you friend, I owe you one.  And if I get accepted to this program, I owe you a dozen.

It’s wild how one person, a couple kind words, a little help, and good company can really brighten someone’s day. How much it brightened mine.

Humans really are social creatures, imperfect creatures.  And sometimes it’s not wrong to ask for a little help sometimes.

My father has always told that people depend on each other, and it’s okay to ask for help.  You’re right Dad, I have to say, you won that one.

Tonight I would’ve ripped my hair out and cursed a bunch and killed a puppy (just kidding) if I hadn’t had a little help.  So many other nights too!

Whether it’s schoolwork I need help with from a professor, man-advice from my best girlfriend, life-advice from my parents, or spiritual advice from a dusty book on my shelf, it’s there to be lovingly used.

A little bit of help goes a long way, and I am so thankful to have these resources.

Thank You.

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A Thought on Columbus Day

Columbus Day is the twelfth of this month, and I thought the day would be a good occasion for some contemplation and awareness.

I went and saw The Canary Effect on campus this evening, a film about how Native Americans were effectively exterminated from the United States during and following colonialism, and how Native Americans continue a relentless struggle in a plethora of socioeconomic and political spheres.

The film was infuriating and impassioning.

I looked down at my shoes, I was wearing moccasins.  I’m sure these weren’t made by Indians at Pine Ridge, and I’m even more sure that Natives don’t benefit from my wearing the style of shoe they created.  I felt slightly sick to my stomach.  Was I aiding the subjugation of American Indians by wearing these shoes? Was I another ignorant American, exploiting these people for selfish reasons?

I took a deep breath.

I left feeling major white-girl guilt and anger, but at the same time, empowered and determined to make the world a better place.

After the film, I asked how I, a 23 year old middle-class college student, could ever create positive change for Native American populations without being condescending or ineffectual.  Another girl gave a good answer.

She suggested that we become aware. That as individuals we do research and get the facts.  That we seek to understand Native cultures and truly see the reasons for why so many of them are desperately troubled.

She also noted that we must become critical consumers.  We must question what we’ve been taught in our public school systems and be critical of the bias we encounter in our textbooks.  We can also stand up for the Native community, so that when someone says, “Oh, why give them[Native groups] any funding or aid? They have casinos so now they’re rich”.  We can then politely inform them that in fact, 90% of American Indians are in NO WAY affected by the gaming initiatives.

We can confront biases and ignorance in the media.  We can kindly remind each other the truth of what happened to the Native population, that by 1890, 98% of American Indians had been killed, and after that thousands of Native women were forcibly sterilized, and thousands of Native Children were ripped from their families and put into Christian boarding schools that sought to completely deconstruct their Native identity.

Today, natives are seven times more likely to commit suicide than the majority white population. Substance abuse is twice as prevalent on the reservation as it is for white communities.  American Indians face constant discrimination in the search for employment and sexual violence against Native women is at a terrible high.

So perhaps we should contemplate these facts and revaluate our prejudices and assumptions.  Perhaps we should be more conscientious of our words and thoughts.  Perhaps we should continue our personal education and re-examine the history of the United States.

I for one, rather than feeling guilty for wearing moccasins, will use them as a personal reminder of what happened to Native Americans. I will remember what has happened to their families, culture, and heritage, and remember the struggles communities face today.  I’ll challenge myself to be aware, and to stay educated about the past, the present, and on matters of the future.

Instead of feeling guilty, become informed.

(Facts derived from The Canary Effect, directed by Robin Davey and Yellow Thunder Woman)

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Do I declare myself?

“But when you rip open that shirt to find the ripped abs of truth – when you remember who you are – the question then becomes: Do you declare yourself?”

-Justine Musk

I ask myself this question often: Do I declare myself?

Being the self-conscious, justice-seeking, slightly psychotic individual I am, I constantly play with different aspects of my self.  Whether it’s the political side, the philosophical side, or the bad poetry side, there are many facets to my personality. I think this is normal, but it’s difficult to find that one passion, that one part of my being, that is stronger and demands a declaration above all others.

What are my ripped abs, so to speak?  What do I see, what do I feel, when I remember who I am?

Do I too, wear a facade?  Do I put on a ‘front’ when I go out and about?  And if so, who am when I get home to an empty house and a lovable mutt?

I suppose I am a sensitive, calm, critical, and slightly sad female.

Without the face without the facade. Just a silly girl puttin’ curlers in her hair.

Acting tough and intelligent can be exhausting some times.

I remember that I am a flawed, unfashionable, and fervent woman.  I have fears and fallacy.

But this remembrance is more beautiful than my shell of ‘wonder woman’ outer projections.  And I remember it, yes, yes, I do.

I remember my fears and passions, and god dammit I declare them.

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Perhaps some poetry?

Bubbles

Bubbles in a boiling pot,

Second layer of skin.

Original color of hair, written in the

fine print.

Seeds of the fruit and popcorn in your teeth.

A splinter under your nail and

the tears choked down all the way to your

feet.

Secret loves

that we keep in the shoe boxes of our

hearts,

manifested in the hairs that prickle as we turn the corner.

Night sweats and belly button

phlegm,

this, the subconscious lives in.

Paint splotchs

I Am Muddy Puddles

I am

muddy puddles and flowers atop prickly cacti.

I hold onto

dog-eared pages and wine-soaked lips.

I feel my

clay encrusted feet and sandy bottoms.

I smell

the dust-covered romance novels and the spiders on the rose.

I wear

holey jeans and big, chocolaty smiles.

I see

melted candles and paint splotches.

I am

baby boogers, with a hint of mint.

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