As I’ve said before, I hate asking for help. I also hate feeling guilty, two things that lupus tests regularly. When my hands are giving me issues, I’m forced to seek help with opening of jars, carrying items and yes sometimes tying my shoes. And is makes me feel guilty for taking away someone’s time for simple tasks I should be able to do on my own. Except I have lupus.
I also hate feeling inadequate and insecure. Lupus, at times, makes me feel highly inadequate in my profession, my relationships and sometimes just in living life. It isn’t that people who have lupus a are adequate n these areas, for they are far from inadequate. It’s just that sometimes lupus makes recalling things challenging. This in turn can make discussions and debates a bit of a challenge. While no one is perfect, I set high expectations for myself with the end result being that some days, lupus makes it hard to reach those expectations. And when that happens, I feel inadequate.
Because I need to rest more, say no more, it can make me feel inadequate in my relationships. The need to weigh the importance of doing something with one person at the cost of not doing something with someone else, well yes this can result in feeling of inadequacy as well.
As for living life, well there are times it’s all I can do to get myself out of bed and grab a shower. After that I have no energy left and so I sit on the sidelines waiting to be better. And it feel so so if life is passing me by. And sometimes these things makes me feel inadequate.
However these are feelings, not realities. Lupus does not make me any less adequate for anything I’ve mentioned above. As a matter of fact in some ways lupus has made me more than adequate in assessing what is really important to spend my time on. Lupus has made me more than adequate at fighting for what I want, my dreams. I may feel inadequate, but I am anything but that. I am stronger and more able to adapt to changes because of lupus.
We humans are creatures of habits. We like consistency or at least routine. Even those of us who claim we don’t, we do. Want the proof, simply take away a standard routine in your day and see what happens.
Allow me to share, every Monday I receive a motivating and/or uplifting practice to try. Yep believe it or I do try to add positivity and motivation into my life; having an unrelenting chronic illness can leave you feeling negative and unmotivated. Anyway every Monday I get one of these emails in my inbox. I look forward to these emails even if all I do sometimes is just read the email.
Yesterday I received an email stating that author of these wonderful things is taking a break for four months. Of course she is entitled to a break, but suddenly I’m unhappy. Not because she is taking a break and not because I am applying everything in each email. Nope that is not what makes me unhappy, instead it is this sense of being set adrift with no directions to follow.
My routine, those moments I spend reading the email and contemplating applying the information, is suddenly been messed with. It’s not a big deal and I’m already over it, but let’s face it, when someone takes our usual parking spot, it darkens our day a little. You have a favorite spot for your yoga mat and someone else takes it, well even if you won’t admit it to anyone else, it sucks. Why because your routine, those moments of consistency and dependable results are somehow soothing.
Friends I am more than a little disappointed in Apple. It isn’t over anything major, which makes my disappointment even more frustrating because it’s something simple that could easily be fixed from my perspective. Alas being I’m only one person with only one voice asking them to carrying something in-store rather than having to shop online, I shall be disappointed.
Apple used to listen to customers, Apple used to be different from the other big companies and that’s why I adored them. Perhaps when you become a big organization you shift your focus and ignore the fact you built a brand through a cult like following of people. Or maybe once you have enough of a cult following you don’t worry about that kind of stuff any more.
The thing is, Apple isn’t the first, nor will they be the last (based on history) company to forget about all the individuals that were loyal to them before they were anything big. Customer service shifts from customer to what can be spun into making the customer want something and telling them exactly how they want it.
Sure it’s cheaper at times to buy things online, but I like to physically see and feel what I’m buying. I know, I’m kind of old school that way. If I can avoid buying books online I do because I like books with nice, crease-free covers and crisp spines. I check for that kind of thing when I go into book stores. You cannot ensure you get that kind of result when buying online.
Beloved has decided he wanted to try buying his groceries online from a local store. Yes this includes fresh produce. He ended up being disappointed in the results because again, what he looks for and the whole experience was out of his control. He ended up with some slightly spoiled apples.
No one wants spoiled apples. Sadly my experience with Apple has left me with a sour taste in my mouth and not because of what anyone did or said, but rather because I am denied the shopping experience I wanted and expected from them.
I will not deny that the four-footed one is a bit on the spoiled side, just a touch mind you, but spoiled all the same. I’ve no one to blame for this except myself. It’s a slippery slope where you think we’ll she could use a stuffed dinosaur and that’s about it. But then she loves the dinosaur so much and it survives her most destructive behaviours so surely she needs the dragon from the same company as well.
Yes my dear friends it really is that slippery and it happens that quickly. And it’s not just stuffed toys with delightful (if you are her) squeaky noisy things in them. Oh no, it becomes a few different treats for training, which at some point slide into a treat because I’m having a human treat.
Of course we aren’t on this journey alone. Oh no Beloved comes along bringing new toys all the time as “just a little something for the wee pup”. And the training food/occasionally treat suddenly becomes a means to ensure she comes to him. Which pretty much means that currency she believes everyone should be carrying treats in their pockets for her. She has been known to pout upon encountering someone who is lacking in the treat department. (This whole thing puzzled Beloved until we accidentally washed a small plastic bag full of treats when his jeans went in the wash. Up until this moment he seemed oblivious to the fact he always has dog treats in his pockets.)
Needless to say I currently cringe when people come for a visit because my spoiled, and much-loved pooch is anticipating “just a wee something”. So we have to work on this, when I get the energy to do it.
A fiend invited me out for coffee to a place she had “just” found. Not a chain coffee place either, just an honest to goodness local cafe which happened to serve French style pastries as well. Who can resist? Certainly not I, and since I was feeling decent-ish there really was no reason not to go.
As we don’t live in the same neighbourhood, my friend and I agreed to meet at the cafe’s parking area so we could do some catching up while walking in. (You might say we have a lot to catch up on!)
An interesting thing happened upon our stepping through the door. The two women working behind the counter called out my friend’s name and said “the usual?” as a cup was already being pulled off the shelf. Interesting in that my friend had just found the place so how could she have a usual? I didn’t say anything, but I raised my eyebrow as my friend said she might in fact be changing up her order. This declaration created a bit of confusion for one of the ladies working behind the counter because she had already grabbed a pastry and put it on a plate.
There is nothing wrong with having a usual. It’s nice to go into places where people know exactly how you like things and see you as more than just an order of coffee. The problem arises when you suddenly want to change up the usual. It alters the easy routine, and can affect the relationship as well.
I’m not sure how many times my friend had been to the cafe to have a usual, but the minute she altered her order it was as if she was a new customer to one of the employees. The light and causal conversation became a little awkward, as if by changing her order my friend had created some type of insult. In the end my friend had her usual to go because she couldn’t resist the pastry or the coffee.
Being a city girl, I have found very few places that I go to frequently enough to even know e names of the employees let alone have a usual. While I relish the relationship my friend seems to have with the employees, I don’t relish the idea of only being a specific order all the time. After all part of the fun is changing things up, which is hard when you have a set usual everyone knows and expects.
Some days you just know are going to be a bit more of a handful right from the start. Not every day can be perfect. Some days the only shining example is that of the glaring imperfections in the day. Now some people have this cute little bit of magic they do where they can find the humor or the opportunity within those glaring imperfections.
They call them opportunities for improvements. I call that putting lipstick on a pig, but hey I get the idea. Except have you ever put lipstick on a pig? For the record I’ve never done it and I would never do it, but at the end of the adventure you’d still have a pig, just one wearing lipstick. So these opportunities for improvements are still pointing out the imperfections that need fixing, it’s just a fancy way of saying it.
Other people have these magical skills that have them prepared to deal with the fact that nothing in life is perfect, that everything needs improving and that into every life must fall some rain. (For the record for some of these people the definition of “some rain” is actually a deluge.) I mean if you know it’s going to be wet and windy or just dreary you can prepare for it. I wonder, though, if these people ever have the idea of hope in their lives. Do they hope for the perfect moments, or are they content for it to be less than all the time.
And now back to the story…this morning I woke up to a day that started with hope and a touch of perfection to it. I mean good coffee (yes I know I may have a crazy addiction to the stuff), plenty of time to do what needed doing, no insane traffic snarls on the way to work (this includes no crazy livestock roaming the roads which is on occasion a major drama) and somewhat decent weather. (I mean it can always be better weather here, but I’m not really going to complain about that.) And the first bit at work was good too.
It was part way through my work morning that the wheels fell off and we headed from a good day to the day of utter and complete imperfections. Imperfections which ranged from technical failures (such as a system failing when I was using it for demonstrations) to people failures (people deciding to do things without first having all the information) and let’s not forget everything else in between those two items as well. Oh and we ran out of coffee too. So that was the icing on the cake that slide on the floor, out the door and into the mud. Where it was eaten. Eaten by a pig, that happened to be wearing lipstick.
But of course there is a bit of perfection even in this day of utter imperfections, frustrations and what have you. Because you see, the perfection was the fact that everything was so wholly imperfect that in a way, it all lined up to a perfect storm of “let’s not do this again”. So I guess in a way it was a somewhat balanced day.
A colleague was looking for some insight into his short-term future and decided to follow his mother’s advice and see an expert about his question. This is how I came to be in a darkened alley way in the middle of the Chinese section of town on a dismal Thursday. We stood outside a heavy, scuffed door waiting to be let into what had once been a regular apartment and now seemed to have become a place of fortune and fate.
I’ve never seen “stick” reading before and was intrigued. Unfortunately for me, the man doing the reading did not feel it was right for me to be present while my colleague’s reading was taking place. He insisted that this was of a most personal and private nature and despite the curiosity I brought, the only way I could observe the reading was to have one done for myself. Whether he did this for business purposes, or if it is the way the energy works, I can’t say. But I can say I did have a reading done. Out of curiosity.
I have had many readings done over the years, not because I necessarily believe that what I am told will happen, but because I never cease be to amazed and how people can tell the future through various means of divination. I have had my palm read, whereby I was told I would have a long life. I have had my tea leaves read and been told that my future is one of fortune. I have had scattered sticks read with the result being I would have a short and hard life (not my favorite reading). But never have I had one of these readings before.
The main difference with this type of reading is that it isn’t for your whole future; it’s at best going to give you information going to the end of the year. And the information is a bit vague. Basically this is a year of “even” I was told. I guess that means there will be some good balanced out with some bag, but basically just a ho-hum year for me. What more could I ask for when my future was told by a stick that was shaken out of a container?
My colleague never shared with me what his reading (which took longer than mine) was, but he seemed at peace or comfortable with what he was told. And that’s the key, accepting the answer you are provided rather than searching for more or hidden meanings behind the answer as he pointed out while we headed back to the car. The message provided is the answer that is required for you at that time and if you just let it be it will blossom to what is. He also told me that I cannot expect to have champagne in a glass if what I bought was beer.