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Memores acti prudentes futuri

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A few words
"When we describe the Moon as dead, we are describing the deadness in ourselves. When we find space so hideously void, we are describing our own unbearable emptiness."
~ D.H. Lawrence

"Is the meaning of life defined by its duration? Or does life have a purpose so large that it doesn't have to be prolonged at any cost to preserve its meaning?"

"Living is not good, but living well. The wise man, therefore, lives as well as he should, not as long as he can... He will always think of life in terms of quality not quantity... Dying early or late is of no relevance, dying well or ill is... even if it is true that while there is life there is hope, life is not to be bought at any cost."
~ Seneca

"People will tell you nothing matters, the whole world's about to end soon anyway. Those people are looking at life the wrong way. I mean, things don't need to last forever to be perfect."
~ Daydream Nation

"All Bette's stories have happy endings. That's because she knows where to stop. She's realized the real problem with stories-- if you keep them going long enough, they always end in death."
~ The Sandman: Preludes & Nocturnes

"The road now stretched across open country, and it occurred to me - not by way of protest, not as a symbol, or anything like that, but merely as a novel experience - that since I had disregarded all laws of humanity, I might as well disregard the rules of traffic. So I crossed to the left side of the highway and checked the feeling, and the feeling was good. It was a pleasant diaphragmal melting, with elements of diffused tactility, all this enhanced by the thought that nothing could be nearer to the elimination of basic physical laws than deliberately driving on the wrong site of the road."
~ Vladimir Nabokov, Lolita

"It is easier to forgive an enemy than to forgive a friend."
~ William Blake
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Monday, February 29, 2016
Gym time today: 3.5 hours.
Total this week: 6 hours.

Mat Pilates, then ran a mile (mostly 7:30 minute pace; I dropped my iPod halfway through the run and had to stop the treadmill to retrieve it, and I pushed the speed to 7:24 to sort of compensate) and walked... like half a mile? Then had CSI and Total Dance. The air conditioning still wasn't fixed, so it was very hot and humid. >_>

The interviewer for SU told me I should probably fill out the FAFSA (Maybe a good sign? Suggests she thinks I'll get in?), so I was doing that tonight... also filed real taxes for the first time ever, so uh... that was a thing. It was kind of tedious, but I guess not really hard. I wouldn't pay someone to do this for me. Luckily I had my dad helping me figure stuff out, though. Yay for parental support!

Good things for today:
-Noah linked me to a Youtube mix from that Vitas song, and it's... really something. So many silly meme videos. So good. He also told me a neat story about a homeless guy he met whose name was Jeff.
-Went grocery shopping with my mom and got a bunch of things on sale. She also got some really yummy chocolate with candied ginger in it from somewhere else, and I had some of that earlier. Num num. When I go shopping with my mom she often will buy me stuff, so I got some dried tart cherries and other yummy things and am pretty pleased.
-I heard "Flight of the Navigator" by Childish Gambino on the radio and had a moment outside myself on the way to the gym.

I had a dream
I had a dream I was flying over all of us
There were so many pretty people
So many pretty faces
I talked to some birds
I fell in love again
And none of this ever ended
Everything just kept going, and going and going
And even when you laughed, when you cried
And even when you were sad you were really happy
Because you were here
And I got to meet every star, every planet
Everything that made me
And we all kissed
And became the same

The voice in the intro reminds me of Commander Powell from Dark Star.

This movie makes me nostalgic. I also just love this scene.

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Some Wiki articles
Sunday, February 28, 2016
Gym time today: 2.5 hours.
Total this week: 2.5 hours.

I was super tired this morning, but managed to drag myself to Cycle at 8:30. Today we had a "show tunes spin" class, so all the music was from musicals. It was the instructor's last day, too, and some people brought flowers for her. I guess she's going to go back to working in theatre. After class, I went on the treadmill... didn't really feel up to running today, so I just walked at 3mph at a level 10/11/12 incline during my half hour break. Maybe it was for the best, because my knee felt a little weird during Bosu Blast. I guess I tend to associate high impact stuff with intensity though, so I didn't feel like I really worked out much today.

When I got home, I pretty much just... slept. For hours. Five hours, in fact. I did wake up at some point during that, but... yeah, five hours. I guess I was tired.

Haven't done too much since I woke up except take a shower and eat. I ended up reading some stuff on Wikipedia about psychological mindedness, metacognition, and mentalization (and here's another interesting one on mentalization) though. I guess... I tend to assume that these are things that everyone is intrinsically capable of, but maybe that's expecting too much. Probably because of the way I was raised, I view high expectations as an optimistic thing. My parents never gave me much direction (or much structure), and I got criticized a fair amount when I screwed up, because I was the oldest and was supposed to be more responsible and know better. This felt frustrating and unfair a lot, but at the same time, it meant that they assumed I was competent and could figure stuff out on my own. I had some rough patches growing up, but overall, I feel like I have risen to meet those expectations. Maybe it was a self-fulfilling prophecy at work in the long term.

I don't know if the way my parents raised me is right for everyone (and they did make some mistakes), but it certainly seems better than being babied and endlessly coddled. I feel some mild distaste for parenting styles that produce emotionally fragile and incompetent people who need constant validation for... doing nothing but "being themselves." Honestly, I don't think that freely expressing yourself is necessarily anything to be proud of in itself. Not getting anxious over other people's opinions of you is one thing, but I feel like some people take it way overboard and get defensive at the slightest criticism.

Good things for today:
-I had the free time to take that ridiculously long nap. I mean, there are things I could have been doing, but nothing urgent.
-My mom got some fish juk for me, and it was yummy. There's not much to explain about that beyond I was pleased that she got something I like for me.
-After Cycle this morning, since it was the instructor's last day, some of the women in the class wanted to take a group photo with her, and they kept gesturing for me to get in the picture too. I don't know how the picture came out, but it was nice to feel included, and I felt like I was able to smile with sincerity instead of just feeling self-conscious and awkward about it.
-Sean put a picture from New Year's up on his OKC, and I was in it. I don't remember seeing it before, but I felt like my smile was pretty decent in it too. Maybe I just look happier in general. I also felt good about having these pictures of myself with friends. They remind me that I have people in my life who care about me, and that's important.
-Noah has been showing me different versions of a song he's working on, to ask if I think things are better or worse in each. I'm happy that he values my opinion enough to share his song with me in this way, and I also think it's super cool that he's making music at all.

I heard this song on the radio the other day and love the sentiments in it:

"My Girls" by Animal Collective.

There isn't much that I feel I need
A solid soul and the blood I bleed
But with a little girl, and by my spouse
I only want a proper house
I don't care for fancy things
Or to take part in the freshest wave
But to provide for mine who ask
I will, with heart, on my father's grave
On my father's grave (on your father's grave)
I don't mean to seem like I care about material things
Like a social status
I just want four walls and adobe slabs
For my girls

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Dolly vid [2P]
Saturday, February 27, 2016
Be it extremely emotional, controversial, messed up, or whatever, this entry has been password protected.

If you know it, enter it; or, ask me for it.

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Gym/good things/other... things
Friday, February 26, 2016
Gym time today: 2 hours.
Total this week: 14 hours.

Bootcamp, then an hour (close to an hour and a half, but I'm rounding down) of random other stuff. I took it easy today because Bootcamp is usually tiring, so I just walked on the treadmill at 3mph at a level 9/10 incline for half an hour, then did Stairmaster for half an hour. Also did some upper body stuff on the weight machines, because... I dunno, they were there. In high school I could bench 75 lbs, but I can't do anywhere near that now, and I feel like I could probably build back up to that if I tried. There's no bench press at my gym, though, just a chest press machine, which I guess is basically the same thing anyway...

Good things today:
-Only had two babies at work this morning, so it was a super easy and relaxed few hours. That was super nice, because I was really really tired from last night, haha. I only got about four hours of sleep and my perception of time was really distorted. The two babies we had were also ones that are pretty happy just doing their own thing, so didn't have to deal with crying for the most part.
-I went grocery shopping with my dad and he bought me a chocolate bar from Trader Joe's. :D It's this new Fireworks one that has chili and Pop Rocks type stuff in it. Normally my dad doesn't want to get any "frivolous" stuff when we go grocery shopping, so that was cool.
-SL sent me a short message saying he just wanted to check in and see how I did on my interview! It'd been awhile since his last reply, so I was surprised (but happy) to get that it.
-I woke up lookin' cute today, despite only getting a few hours of sleep. Not that there was anybody around to appreciate it, but oh well. I was pleased.

Tomorrow I get to hang out with my friends! Looking forward to that. I'm going to try to remember to talk to them about going to Maker Faire in a few months.


I had a dream that I ran into the ex before my last one and asked him how he was doing. He said he had adopted two kids since we broke up. I was somewhat surprised, and said it was funny how things turned out, but that I hoped he was doing well and was happier with his life.

Alex said it was amazing that I've been able to forgive that ex for everything that happened between us, and that I genuinely hope he's just doing alright and can find happiness. I'm not sure if I personally consider it amazing. I want to be able to forgive anybody, ideally. Have had some trouble with forgiving one person in the past few months, because I felt like they made almost no visible efforts (and yet complain I don't acknowledge their efforts-- but how can I acknowledge something they aren't showing me?) to make up for what they did, and they've treated me pretty poorly overall. No respect, no trying to figure out to make amends, no real work put into being better in the future. Just weak, empty wishes to be better with no substance behind them.

But maybe that's all you can get from a person like that. Someone who won't make promises because it's too much of a commitment, or too hard, or they'll just forget. I'm done believing them when they say they want to be better, because the reality is that they don't stick to that at all. I'm tired of being disappointed and hurt by what end up feeling like lies. It just seems like this person has lied to me over and over again and only told the truth when it would hurt me. I know they've read my blog in the past-- I doubt they're bothering now-- but I feel that they could read all this and either not feel particularly bad or just uselessly apologize without supporting the apology with any forward-moving action.

And I need to give up on ever hoping this person will change, or make up for all the wrong. They're not going to do that. They are going to run away because problems are scary, or they're going to withdraw and avoid it (which is essentially the same thing). A shell of apathy around a core of cowardice. And they justify this cowardice by claiming to seek some kind of... I don't even know... inner peace? Tranquility? I have nothing against these concepts per se, but I find them despicable when they come at the cost of showing true compassion and care for others. I don't find anything redeemable about goals that are entirely self-serving in that way, regardless of what they are.

Typing all that up made me feel kind of irritated, but this came on in iTunes and had a soothing effect. I'll count that as a good thing for the day.

"Tristram" by Matt Uelman.

This song always reminds me of being a kid and watching my dad play Diablo. It's comforting and familiar and right now it's wrapping me up and gently trimming away those unproductive angry thoughts.

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Late movie night
Thursday, February 25, 2016
Gym time today: 2 hours.
Total this week: 12 hours.

Pilates Fit and Turbo Kick tonight. I tried to put a lot of energy into Turbo Kick so I would feel like it was a more productive use of time. Not much to say about the gym beyond that.

After the gym, I went home, showered, and then drove to hang out with my friend Alex. We had dinner at a French restaurant and watched Hail, Caesar!, which I actually found quite enjoyable. He paid for the movie, which was really nice of him. We were originally going to watch TV tonight, but his sister (who lives with him) is sick, and he didn't want to expose me to that. He texted me to tell me I probably shouldn't come over to his place when I was drying my hair, and I was kind of disappointed, but then he said we could catch a movie if I still wanted to hang out. I texted back and said that sounded cool, and on my way over to Santana Row (where the theatre is), he said not to buy my ticket if I got there before him, because he got them online for both of us. Over dinner I asked him how much I owed him, and he said it was on him because the movie was his idea.

Not that it's important, but I got trout with green beans and almonds and brown butter and it was yummy. We also split a brown butter pear tart for dessert, because... brown butter pear tart. I don't feel like I need more of an explanation than that. Ahhh, it was good. Oh, and I got a cucumber basil faux-jito and my dinner bill ended up being kinda high, but I don't eat at nice places that often, so I figure it's okay. Alex said that if his boss wasn't so terrible at giving him his paychecks on time, he would have paid for dinner too, which I thought was a very generous gesture.

We were the only ones in the theatre because the showing was so late (10:10 PM!). It was cool, having the whole place to ourselves. We could talk as loud as we wanted! Not that I talked super loudly... but I do like to talk to people during movies.

After the movie, he walked me back to my car, and we talked for uh... like almost two hours, haha. That was really nice. We only stopped because a security SUV drove by and the guy inside told us that the parking lot was closed and we had to go. He was nice about it though, which I appreciated. Sometimes security people are scary.

Good things for today:
-Hanging out with Alex! Definitely one of the best parts of today. I had a great time with him, and I hope his sister is better by next week so we can resume our terrible TV Thursdays.
-Seeing Hail, Caesar! It's rare that I enjoy a movie in the theatre that much, but it was a lot of fun. It was also really nice that my ticket was paid for.
-Babysitting was calm enough that I got to read more of my book while I was there. I feel like some of it is helping me come to terms with how things are with a certain person who used to mean a lot to me, and I feel more peaceful looking at it with this new perspective.
-I finally got my Paraplusch toy in the mail today! I will have to post a picture at some point... It came all the way from Germany, and I'm glad it made it here intact. I've had it on my wishlist for a few years now, ever since I discovered the game (it's in the sidebar, but here's another link). I feel like it's a bit more meaningful than the average stuffed animal, and I'm quite pleased to have it now.

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A pretty good day
Wednesday, February 24, 2016
Gym time today: 2 hours.
Total this week: 10 hours.

Piloxing in the afternoon, Cycle Fusion in the evening. Nothing extra today.

I had my interview for grad school today! I think it went well... The interviewer said my application essay was impressive and I seemed to have read a lot about existential psychology. At that point, Imposter Syndrome struck and I was like "oh no, she thinks I am very well read in this area when I've actually only read like four or five books from the suggested reading list." Other than that though, I think it was okay... After the call, I felt pretty good about things.

Some of the angry thoughts crept back into my mind during Cycle tonight, but otherwise, my day was quite nice. I don't even remember what I was thinking about during the class. Or well... I do remember wondering if I should have heavier dumbbells, and if my arms would look more toned anyway if I kept using the light ones but did a lot of reps over a long period of time.

I didn't sleep well last night, and woke up a few times. Also had what felt like strange dreams, but I don't remember them very well. Despite all that though, I didn't feel super exhausted today (well, I did get sleepy in the car while sitting in rush hour traffic on the way back from therapy).

Good things today:
-The interview! I wasn't really worried about it anyway, and didn't prepare, to be honest, but I'm glad it's done now. The interviewer said they'd have their decision by mid March, so I just have to wait a few weeks now.
-Hearing a song on the radio again that I was trying to find before. I realized I actually don't like it that much, but it made me remember this song, which I do like:
"Young Blood" by The Naked and Famous.

As it withers
Brittle it shakes
Can you whisper
As it crumbles and breaks
As you shiver
Count up all your mistakes
Pair of forgivers
Let go before it's too late

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A book
Tuesday, February 23, 2016
Gym time today: 2.5 hours.
Total this week: 8 hours.

Normal classes today. Bootcamp and cycle. Also walked a mile and a half at 3mph and a level 9 incline in the half hour break between classes.

Today wasn't too eventful. Just babysat and did my gym classes, pretty much. I also started reading a book that Fro gave me, though. It is, appropriately, about the kind of people my therapist tells me I need to stop dating. :P

So far, it's pretty interesting! Easy reading, too. I'm about halfway through and maybe I'll finish it tonight. Some of it has resonated a lot with me regarding certain people I've known, but I'm going to avoid "diagnosing" anybody in that way if I can help it.

My good things for today:
-I had a relaxing morning and got to read part of that book, which I enjoyed. I'm also happy that Fro gave it to me in the first place.
-During Bootcamp, I looked in the mirror and felt satisfied with my reflection. Lately I've been feeling alright about how I look most of the time, which is a nice change from how things used to be.
-My hair felt really nice and soft today, which is a small thing, but it's pleasant.
-I felt almost no anger today. I think it's finally going away, which is a relief. I did have some thoughts that would typically be anger-related, but I think they popped up out of habit more than anything else.
-My skin is definitely clearing up, and that's not something just for today, but I guess I wanted to mention it because it matters to me.

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Good things and meaningful gifts
Monday, February 22, 2016
Gym time today: 3.5 hours.
Total this week: 5.5 hours.

Normal stuff today. Mat Pilates, Stairmaster, ran a mile (7:30 time, level 1 incline), CSI, Total Dance. The air conditioning was broken in the classroom where CSI and Total Dance were, so it was basically like exercising in a sauna for two hours.

I had a generally nice day, though. It was very sunny today, but not hot. I visited one of the hospice patients for an hour and it went decently. She's a very nice old lady and always offers me some of her lunch when I'm there, even though I always decline (not that she remembers that I decline).

I was reading this article from Barking Up the Wrong Tree, and it included that thing Fro suggested to me when I was getting over my breakup in 2014. It's the sixth item in the list, "Write Down The Good Stuff That Happened". I haven't kept up with it regularly, but have been trying to do it again recently. Mostly I only list things and don't explain them though, so maybe I should explain them too.

Things I enjoyed today:
-The weather. I still remember feeling anxious and scared by blue skies when I was derealized. Now they remind me that I can appreciate my environment and that things feel clear and real.
-Sean sent me a link to this Vine. I told him about Noah showing me the original video, and it made me happy that he found that and thought of me.
-Finding out Mick Jagger was featured in "T.H.E. (The Hardest Ever)" by will.i.am. The instructor for Total Dance plays this a lot and I decided to look it up tonight, and for some reason it really amuses me that Mick Jagger is in it. It just seems like such a strange partnership.

Last night I decided to take a 5 Love Languages quiz for fun, and to see if anything had changed. My score breakdown was:
8 Quality Time
7 Receiving Gifts
7 Words of Affirmation
4 Acts of Service
4 Physical Touch

The Receiving Gifts score surprised me at first, but when I read the description, it actually made a lot of sense.
Don’t mistake this love language for materialism; the receiver of gifts thrives on the love, thoughtfulness, and effort behind the gift. If you speak this language, the perfect gift or gesture shows that you are known, you are cared for, and you are prized above whatever was sacrificed to bring the gift to you. A missed birthday or a hasty, thoughtless gift would be disastrous—so would the absence of everyday gestures. Gifts are heartfelt symbols to you of someone else's love and affection for you.

This chart also has a helpful explanation of the different love languages.

I've realized as I've gotten older that gifts are actually really important to me. I don't want to just get stuff, though, what matters is the meaning behind the gift. I think a lot of things count as gifts, in the love language sense. Sean's link was a gift because it was specifically for me. I have another friend who just spams me with links that have nothing to do with who I am, and those are not gifts. My third ex would email me bird-related pictures and gifs, things like that, and those were gifts, because I like birds. It's not a gift, however, when someone sends me a cat picture they also sent five other people.

Gifts are best when they're unexpected. Things that say "I didn't have to, but I got this for you because I thought of you and thought you might like it." The "I thought of you" part is really key. Whatever the gift may be is a vehicle for that thought. "I thought of you... and I wanted to express that in a way that is tailored to who you are." They remembered me, but more importantly, they remembered me as an individual with certain preferences and experiences.

It meant so much to me when Becka brought me flowers one day at school to cheer me up when I was feeling sad. I feel like that kind of cemented her as a good friend in my mind, even though we don't talk that much anymore. I'm not sure any of my friends can really relate to me about this gift thing, though.

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