20 January 2015

In Blackwater Woods
Look, the trees
are turning
their own bodies
into pillars
of light,
are giving off the rich
fragrance of cinnamon
and fulfillment,
the long tapers
of cattails
are bursting and floating away over
the blue shoulders
of the ponds,
and every pond,
no matter what its
name is, is
nameless now.
Every year
I have ever learned
in my lifetime
leads back to this: the fires
and the black river of loss
whose other side
is salvation,
whose meaning
none of us will ever know.
To live in this world
you must be able
to do three things:
to love what is mortal;
to hold it
against your bones knowing
your own life depends on it;
and, when the time comes to let it go,
to let it go.
Mary Oliver,
New and Selected Poems

31 May 2013

The Power of Vulnerability

God I love a good Ted Talk. This one is 20 minutes long but it was worth every minute of it. We're all vulnerable. It's hard and it's true and it's where all the good stuff is. It's the human condition.

The hardest part is the "no guarantee"...

"Let yourself be seen. Really seen. Deeply seen. Love with your whole heart even though there is no guarantee. Practice gratitude and joy in the moments of terror - Terror that includes, can I love you this much? Feeling that vulnerable means I'm alive and be grateful for that. Believe that you are enough."

28 June 2010

Never Say Never

Yesterday I finished my second half marathon in less than a year. Despite training slightly less and knowing more about pacing myself, I finished at the exact same time as I finished my first one. To the minute.

2 hours 35 minutes EXACTLY.

I promptly announced my retirement from half marathon running.
I am NEVER doing that again.

17 May 2010

The Comfort of Siblings

Had a great weekend with my family, even though we gathered for a sad occasion. Was more than happy (thrilled? delighted? comforted.) to spend Saturday night with my brother, sister in law, sister of sister in law, and dearest cousin talking into the wee small hours of the morning.

There is such an amazing comfort in the company of siblings and those you love like siblings. When you look at someone else and see your eyes, or your smile, or your Reckenroll nose and know that someone else sees the world through your same DNA. It's a feeling of belonging like no other and one that I don't think could be replicated in anyway. The months I spent fighting with my brother last year were the longest of my life. We're better friends than ever because of it but I would take it all back if I could. I was reminded on the weekend of how glad I am we moved past it...stubborn as we are.

I never really like the book On Beauty by Zadie Smith but I've always loved the following passage:

"People talk about the happy quiet that can exist between two loves, but this, too, was great; sitting between his sister and his brother, saying nothing, eating. Before the world existed, before it was populated, and before there were wars and jobs and colleges and movies and clothes and opinions and foreign travel -- before all of these things there had been only one person, Zora, and only one place: a tent in the living room made from chairs and bed-sheets. After a few years, Levi arrived; space was made for him; it was as if he had always been. Looking at them both now, Jerome found himself in their finger joints and neat conch ears, in their long legs and wild curls. He heard himself in their partial lisps caused by puffy tongues vibrating against slightly noticeable buckteeth. He did not consider if or how or why he loved them. They were just love: they were the first evidence he ever had of love, and they would be the last confirmation of love when everything else fell away."

— Zadie Smith (On Beauty)

Saw this today

"Embed the truth. Stop Propoganda"

Wanted to ask the driver, "Who decides which is which?"

Stupid bumper sticker.

10 May 2010

Pearls of Wisdom

Some of the best advice I've ever gotten:
  • You can't think your way out of everything
  • Success comes from failure. Failure builds character and teaches. There's no one out there with a perfect record. That's how you learn to be successful next time.
  • Not everything needs to be solved right now.
  • Always know your way home. You don't have to go there, you just need to know how to get there.
  • A crisis on your part is not a crisis on my part.
  • Be sincere in your relationships. You can't control anything (or anyone) in this world except how you interacted in the situation. If you can walk away holding your head high and knowing you acted in a way you feel good about, well, that's all you can expect of yourself.
  • Believe someone the first time they show you who they really are. People can change...but usually don't.

What I Learned this Weekend

  • This is my last 1/2 marathon. Six miles is a good distance to train to. I like it. I don't really feel the need to run further.
  • I should always put on pants first thing in the morning. You never know who is going to come knocking on your door or at what time around here.
  • You can't expect that there will always be a wine opener.
  • I need to play a lot more poker...and watch others play it too. Too many strategies happening at once to keep track of with an untrained mind.
  • Even at 33 years old, I sometimes still have no idea what's going on.
  • Cooking for my friends makes me exceedingly happy. Anyone want to come over for dinner?

04 May 2010

Simple Pleasures

I've noticed lately that there are some little things that happen in my day to day life that bring me ridiculous amounts of pleasure.
  • Cream in my coffee. Life is short. A dash of cream in my morning coffee won't kill me or make me fatter and quite frankly, I'm nicer afterward. If you're into cream, go for it and don't feel a lick of guilt
  • Race Car morning commute. There is a point in my commute, every morning, where 520 opens up to 4 lanes and you temporarily have the opportunity to drive like a race car driver. VROOM! I do this everyday. It makes me exceedingly happy for exactly 45 seconds.
  • Speaking of driving, I feel pretty awesome when I can change lanes on the freeway and not hit any of those bumpy things.
  • Big words in daily conversation. Nebulous. Fiduciary. Pedestrian (not the noun, the adjective).
  • People who know the difference between the noun and the adjective of the same word.
  • A snuggle for the cat in the morning and a belly rub for the dog at night. I don't make these rules, I just play along with their demands.
  • Quoting a random movie and having someone else get it right away. It's like a joke told well.
  • A perfectly made Belvedere martini
  • Bad ass sunglasses. *Almost* makes you feel cooler than your favorite heels...almost.

And finally, being told "I read your blog. You should blog more."

In a word, "AWESOME." In more than one word, "a shameless plug for comments"

29 April 2010

Perception is 9/10ths of the Law

I've been thinking a lot about perception lately. My perceptions, other's perceptions, the perceptions of the group, the perceptions of the individual...I'm in PR, it's what I do.

Yesterday was a 4 mile training run day. That's not the long run anymore. That's just a short daily run. I have to do it at least twice this week. I remember when four miles sounded like a ridiculously long distance. Now that I have to run 6 miles for a long run, four miles seems like a nice break.

Perception is everything.

When I got to Green Lake to meet Goonder to run, the clouds were rolling in, the rain was starting and my motivation (which had been so strong before I spent 35 minutes commuting in rush hour) was waning at best. Beer and a dark pub where I could sulk about my lack of work/life balance sounded like a much better idea. Goonder said NO and four miles later, I had actually enjoyed 45 minutes alone with my music, my thoughts, and my feet hitting the pavement. The sun had come out (literally!) and I'd even managed to solve some of the things that had been plaguing my mind all day. My body was post-run happy high and the funky cobwebs had been replaced by a pleasant sense of self-satisfaction.

Perception is everything.

Finally, it's been crazy busy at work lately (hence my lack of posts). CRAZY. I find myself constantly stressed about the work I'm doing, the work I'm leading my team to deliver, the impact I have on the people who work for me, the impact I have on the people I report to...and the crazier it gets the more I perceive myself as not delivering in the way I know I can. I dream about it at night. Who cares about all the things we accomplished today when there is still tomorrow's problem to solve?

And then I get a note today from one of my team members telling me she thinks the team is absolutely rocking it out this week and she's feeling amped about the whole thing and our great results.

Perception isn't everything.