Posts Tagged ‘positivity’

Reading: The Vagrants by Yiyun Li, The Wisdom of Insecurity by Alan Watts
Listening: all things Ben 

The scant flurries from this morning have morphed into a bona fide, diagonal snow that’s marbling the neighbors’ roofs with curling veins of white. I’m starting slow, crossed legs under a blanket, still sipping coffee gone cold long ago. The friends’ dog I’m here to watch sleeps curled in a tight spiral on his own blanket nearby. Plenty of windows in their new house let in a nice amount of natural light, even on this winter day when the sky is that kind of overcast that makes it appear almost white, as if our planet were surrounded by nothing but clear, still water, the way it looks in a full bathtub. I woke up this morning with the top of the dog’s head close to my own forehead, at that crackling distance where almost touching sometimes becomes its own tangible sensation.

I don’t wait for New Years to set my resolutions, and this year I’m letting the holiday pass without the inventory-taking I normally do on the events and accomplishments of the past year. That can provide insight, but at present I feel like being seated in the now, and so that’s what I’m doing. My thoughts float — to my friends, to the little glimpses into their lives I get when I watch their children or animals, to my parents and my love for my family, to how staying in someone else’s home on a holiday when they’re away gives me a feeling of transience and perspective, to the fact that I like this house, to a man out there who I find has gotten under my skin more than I expected — all this with a quiet-spirited warmth that demands nothing, not of them, not of me. I am grateful. Our existence is enough.

By this point in writing, the dog’s up and restless, pacing, fiddling with a rubber ball for a moment before looking for something else to do. I’ll take this as my cue.


Today’s rain arrived as thunderstorms this evening, so I took the opportunity to sit on my porch and enjoy the atmosphere while getting some quiet, intellectual work done (providing a nice balance for the busy festival my friends and I went to this morning). Listening to the rain and Ryan Adams, I got to thinking about seizing the moment in other situations. It’s something I’ve made some major strides in this year.

It’s not exactly easy to like someone, particularly in the early stages when you don’t know if it’s mutual or not. It’s not exactly tough, either, of course—heck, having a crush can even be kinda fun. There’s the buzz of having a good time with another person (which, funny enough, is what tends to prompt that wondering about mutuality), the corresponding sugar-like rush of imagining, What if things go well? Besides the fun of new possibility, there’s the simple enjoyment of well-spent time with somebody, which is worth it in and of itself.

So, I’ve been going ahead and giving it my best shot in those moments that seem to present themselves. Whatever comes of it, I’ll know I was brave and open. In a way, it’s easy; I recently joked to a friend that in a post-J. economy, I don’t have the time or energy to worry about these things—Does he like me, or doesn’t he? I don’t know, but I’m sure I’ll find out at some point, and I’m not going to make myself crazy over it. And I’m not going to spend time worrying about how I don’t remember how these things are supposed to work. It’ll go somewhere, or I’ll get over it. It really is that simple.

What will I do? What I’ve been doing. Send the text message. Offer the invitation. Go to the game with acquaintances and have a good time, get to know them better. Spend time with friends and family who already love me, and be grateful for them. Say yes to the local reporter who asks to interview my best bud and me at the festival. Say yes when the grad program director at my school asks me to talk at new student orientation as a recent grad. Say yes when a very talented artist expresses interest in painting my portrait. Submit my stories and poems to publications and hope for the best. Keep putting energy into the worthwhile things I’m doing. Go out on the limb. Just go for it and hope for the best in everything.

Sometimes it’s helpful to remember the good things that are happening; this blog has been pretty much exclusively about the rough things lately, and so it’s time for a brief inventory. In the past week…

I graduated with my M.A. in English Literature, with a 4.0 GPA.

I even look pretty good in a couple of the pictures. *smirk*

My dad sent me flowers on graduation day. They’re on the table in front of me now.

I got to see my sister a lot. We shopped for makeup together, which made the task much more fun for me.

I had fried chicken and homemade noodles at the party my parents threw for my sister (who just got her B.A. in Music) and me.

I spent time with my family and got to see some of my cousins and their kids.

The Bioware store had a sale on some of its Mass Effect stuff.

My brother came to visit; we went to a local comic con, got dinner, hit a bookstore, and had a good time hanging out together for a few hours.

Even though I was tired and had a cold that day (still getting over it), I enjoyed dinner and dessert and watching What Not To Wear on Netflix with my mom and sis.

So, there are some bright spots and silver linings to remember from this gray season, too. I just wanna remember the good along with the bad. All mixed together—the way it happened.