Tag Archives: be nice

The world needs more like my mom.

First I wanted to share a YouTube video that was a good reminder for me. I told a friend the thing I dislike the most of everything going on is the polarization, fighting, and fear that an awful lot of people wish to participate in. This video is a slight twist to things I’ve suspected and suggested myself, but her words are better at conveying it.


Now for my intended topic :

For every failure my dad demonstrated, every trauma incurred by him in my childhood, my mom showed brilliance. In fact she is the one that I credit for keeping me from being completely like my dad, and teaching me better ways to live .

My mom was my protector, as much as she could be. My mom was my support, the kindness in my world. She taught me how to care about others through kindness and her own personal charity workings.

She knew how to apologise, and her biggest faults were apologizing too much and falling prey to dad’s dominance and a general poverty loop.

My memories of mom are exact opposites to the memories of dad. Where dad is mostly negative memories with a smear of positive ones, my mom is mostly positive ones with a smear of negative (and really the few negatives tie back to dad in one way or another).

My mom was the person in our family that was always doing something to help people that were less fortunate.

I remember one Christmas season my mom was worried that we ourselves would not have a holiday celebration of any significance, and knew she needed to rely on K-Mart’s layaway program to even try to provide a holiday. However, she knew someone that was struggling even worse than our family was. Their family had 3 small children and when she went to put our toys on layaway at K-Mart she picked 3 small toys for the other family to include in her layaway purchase. I remember her being worried about timing because the last payment was due right before Christmas, but ultimately she made it work and both our family and theirs had a holiday that year.

Then there was our next-door neighbor when I was about 4 years old. It was an elderly lady that had emphysema from having smoked for her whole life. The lady lived alone and had no close family to help her. She continued to smoke even while using oxygen. My mom promised her that she would come clean her mobile home and make some food for her if she promised not to smoke while her and I were there. The house always smelled strongly of cigarettes and I disliked being there, and often the lady would have a cigarette ready to light as soon as we left. Yet she never actually smoked when we were over, and my mom did continue to help her every week until we had to move away. My mom never charged her anything, only asked she pay for any groceries paid for on her behalf.

My mom was big on helping at Christmas time. She would always find an acquaintance or co-worker that was having a particularly difficult year. Sometimes she would give gifts, sometimes decorations. Occasionally, if we were having a good year she would do both. I remember several years where I helped her pick presents for other little girls. One year she helped a Mexican family she worked with and provided much of their Christmas. They had moved to Iowa City not long before that holiday season and were caring for elderly extended family from Mexico. She provided them a whole array of inexpensive decorations and small gifts for kids and even bought them a turkey. My father was very upset with her because she had helped a Mexican family in such a large way. I have always respected her choice and it always bothered me that my father kept pointing out their race.

Help is help, and anyone struggling to get through life deserves help. Those barely getting by, need the boost of a little holiday cheer sometimes, and kind hearts make the world keep functioning. That is a lesson my father missed, because he would help anyone that was white, even druggies, but not a hard working Mexican family. Charity is not about skin color, but honoring someone’s journey as being more difficult than deserved, and making an attempt to help another’s life be just a bit better than yesterday. Everyone deserves that moment.

My mom was also a nurse that mostly worked in nursing homes. Mostly working evening and 3rd shifts, there were several times that my mom would have to take us to work with her and Dad would pick us up on his way home. Hindsight being what it is, I now wonder if those supposed long shifts were parts of his affairs with other women. Regardless, what I remember on those nights is how mom always got along well with her co-workers and was kind to residents. There was one nursing home I actually enjoyed going to because they had a resident cat. The cat had made friends with mom because she was the only one that was really kind to it. So, when us kids went, we were accepted by the cat as being friendly as well. It would hang out and let me pet it the entire time I was there. The same nursing home also had a huge fish tank, or what seemed huge to me, and I loved watching the fish. But really, I remember my mom rubbing backs and convincing people to take medicine because it was good for them. I remember her patiently explaining to people that she would help them as soon as possible.

Is it any wonder I have spent nearly 8 years working with elderly? Or that I get along with my mom far better than my father?

Despite working mostly nights when I was a kid, my mom still cooked and cleaned and took care of us children during the day. I remember when I was really little trying to pry her eyes open and asking her if she was ready to get up yet. She would just say “a little longer can you watch your shows please”. I would watch all the PBS shows including Bob Ross and another lady painter that did adorable little animal paintings. That’s where I got interested in art. When I would get bored with TV I would pretend. I would play family or school or tea party, or lay in sunbeams with my kitty and daydream that the dust flecks were fairies. My stuffed animals were great friends when my mom was resting from her work shift. Then around lunchtime she would spring into action, make me lunch and start cleaning, laundry and prepping for making dinner. As I got older she would let me help by showing me how to dust or make Kool-aid.

Then eventually I started school, being the youngest for many years, and she actually got a full amount of sleep.

I remember spending holiday time baking a whole array of tasty treats with mom. I ate far too many things right out of the oven, but it was just SOOOO tasty. The best part was knowing that many of her delicious treats were for others. Should would make goodie baskets for friends and co-workers, she would give breads and cookies to neighbors. She baked pies to help other families have good holiday dinners. And it wasn’t just at Christmas. When our zucchinis would ripen she would bake loaves and loaves and give away nearly half of them. At Easter she would bake cookies and muffins and give them away with chocolates. On her birthday she would always make two cakes, one for home and one for work. All year round she would cook goodies and half always went to other people. When I was in highschool a neighbor made pickles and she would trade goodies for pickles. They would combine their leftovers for other neighbors to get some of both.

When times were really tough for my mom in Utah she would drive across state line to buy butter by the car full. She would take the butter to her neighbors and sell it cheaper than the Utah taxed butter but more than she paid. When she wasn’t running butter she hauled manure, because one farmer would pay her to clean out animal stalls and another would pay her for the load as fertilizer for crops.

She made dolls and crocheted doll dresses by hand. She baked for profit and for fund raisers for school. She crocheted blankets for friends with babies and would give them as gifts whenever she could. She made clothes for us kids when she couldn’t afford to buy new ones.

I have always felt terrible because the year bullying started for me, she had made me some very pretty dresses for school. Yet, they were not dresses found in stores, so kids noticed. They teased me for not having store clothes and then I didn’t want to wear the dresses. I knew it hurt my mom’s feelings, but the kids were hurting my feelings. There was no good solution. It was the first time I struggled with a problem like that. I have always wanted to make up for it and felt I never could.

I love my mom and I really appreciate everything she did for us and especially for what she tried to do for us. I know she did her best to keep dad’s anger at bay and protect us when she couldn’t keep it away. I know she had more than a few ingenious moments that kept our family afloat when times were tough and she made dollars go far further than most people manage. She was strong and compassionate and caring on multiple levels. She put her kids first and God second, and was always doing her best to make our lives and the lives of those she knew better. She is a kind human being and that is exactly the kind of person this world needs more of. I aim to be like my mom as much as possible, and hope maybe one-day I’ll figure out a step even slightly better.

I love you mom.


May you always have a kind person in your life. May you see acts of kindness all around you and find ways to do them yourself. May you have loving caring parents and be successful in protecting your children from the hurts of the world. May you forgive yourself and others when hurts seem to multiply or affect those you want to show love. May you know your presence in the world is helping others to have a better experience. May you know you are leaving a positive mark on the world. May you know you are loved and safe.

Siva Hir Su

Ripening

I can feel it in the air tonight.

A storm is rolling in, my children are having expansive moments, and I’m fuzzy around the edges: not quite thinking 100% clearly being tired from 12 days of work. I have one day of work to go and beyond being very ready for my day off, I’m aware of a sense of something other than a storm approaching.

In the past, these moments have carried anxiety or a sense of something more intense. At times I’ve used the words: anticipating impending doom. Tonight is different, more reserved, more subtle.

I had a moment of grief at dinner over my probably never coming back SJ. I cried and told Nathan that a heart never forgets having fallen in love. His consolation was that at least I gave the love freely and that has to mean something. He thinks that the divine will send an even better replacement, but I know even the best replacement will not have the exact same feel. That is something I’m just working on coming to terms with.

Ultimately, if there is such an energetic connection and honesty, I’ll likely move on just fine in time. It just seems like this one is taking me a long time to get over.

I told Nathan it all leaves me feeling like boys are dense, and perhaps my attention should be on girls again/for once. But the only girls I’ve caught in my sights are clients (a huge ethical no-no I’m unwilling to break) or already married and most likely monogamous at that. So being I’m still not on social media and not desiring to be on any dating sites of any kind, it seems I’ll have to wait for the universe to send me a girl. God knows what my preferences are, as evidence by the other things I’ve been provided in alignment with my previous asking. So there will eventually be an obvious answer, I must just continue to have patience.

For now, I work on friendship: with existing friends and new work acquaintances. It’s easier and more relaxed anyways, except for my damn schedule being so inconvenient. Plus, I can be a little lazy on friends and fit time for them in as I feel up to it.

It also means I can prioritize me better as well. Sunday being my day off, I will assemble what I have so far of my new computer for graphic design. I’ll get sketch-up and some other software installed to be able to start my images for Atira. Eventually, I will be able to get a pen mouse for detailed work, I look forward to that. In the meantime, I also plan to make some edits to the format of my blog here in WordPress. I’ve hit some pretty exciting milestones at 350 posts over the last 4 years. I feel like my journey needs honoured, so I am going to reflect that in adding to my blog layout. I make no promises as to how long it will take me to do all this computer work, since this week has been so full I barely managed to post at all, but it’s still a short term goal for me.

Wish me well, and if you’re a regular reader, I’d love some feedback/comments or even suggestions.

Be well. May you have rest and relaxation. May you enjoy time off doing things you like/love. May you have easy to accomplish, feel good, goals. And as I’ve often said: may you find all of the love you seek.

Siva Hir Su

Relaxing into clarity.

Yesterday I hit an exhausted wall again. Cancelled most, but not all, of my massage work today. That is an expensive habit I need to break, even if it has only been once a month.

You see as an employee I’m faced with the corporation’s rules:

  • Too many sick days and there’s penalty.
  • Overtime equals penalty.
  • Too many penalties and you get fired.

Yet the “reality” is I am working 7 days a week. 5 for them and 2 as myself. It also holds knowledge that I made $4 more last year in the job than in the self-employed work- way more hours for the same pay.

The reality is that their full-time 40-hour-a-week job has unrealistic expectations. There’s simply too much to be done to fit into 40 hours, but not enough to justify hiring an additional employee. So rules being what they are I’ve been electing to work off the clock averaging 2 to 5 hours a week of unpaid overtime, and that’s with efforts I’ve made to make certain duties more efficient.

I’d hate to see what the average Joe would need, and it has made even clearer why they keep going through activities directors like candy. Because like myself they’ve all probably hit the this-isn’t-worth-it-wall and quit caring which ultimately led to unfulfilled job duties and getting themselves canned. Unfortunately, even though I’m seeing the clarity, my work ethic demands I stick to what I’ve already done, until I find a better solution.

I’m literally putting in 70 hours a week between both sources of income, sometimes more.

So today I worked less to take care of myself. In fact I’m writing this from my post cupping, Epsom salt bath.

Thought you might prefer to not see all of me naked 🤣, but I’m loving that technology has allowed this moment.

Anyway, sunshine, cupping, massage, good healthy food, CBD oil, and a peppermint/eucalyptus Epsom bath- I’m starting to feel revived. I might actually be able to accomplish some tax prep before bed.

In the meantime, whilst I soak, I’m going to breakdown the opposites I’d prefer to experience.

  • Ballance between work life and home/social life.
  • Quality time with my children (wanting to play in the sandbox with Ian and go for walks outside again, now that the weather is improving).
  • I’d love to get paid above the real, current, highly inflated, cost-of-living for doing a 40 hour week. Less hours, more pay. I feel I’m worth it. I’m intelligent, hard working, detail oriented, and do go the extra mile when it’s called for (it shouldn’t be a daily expectation at low wages like it currently is).
  • Legally, I’m due to be paid for overtime when it’s necessary without penalty. Companies should acknowledge that if they are choosing to have fewer employees than workload dictates, they are to pay accordingly, or adjust the workload. In this particular case there are 3 people with time available to help. 2 of which are computer illiterate (as far as many of my duties are concerned) and the 3rd is one of “the mean girls” above me in rank. That is the additional clarity of why I just work off the clock, instead of attempting to shift workload elsewhere. They are simply either not able or willing to help in a genuine caring manner.
  • I wish to work with people willing to go the extra mile and be supportive of each other, but in an environment that tests it less frequently. Lower stress environment.
  • I prefer to work with people that are more open, accepting, and understanding. We all have oddities, quirks, and strange habits or mannerisms, just because someone else’s might bother you doesn’t make it right to mock them.
  • I enjoy being around friendly people.
  • I enjoy being appreciated.
  • I am grateful I leave lasting positive impacts on the people and places I’ve worked with.
  • I enjoy the feeling of belonging one gets in a tight knit community.
  • I enjoy being around people of all ages and all backgrounds. It is more interesting and brings more ideas to the table, the “compromise-challenge” is worth it.
  • I prefer to live the sentiment Summer Osborne addressed in her TED talk. (see here)
  • I would love to have genuinely good insurance that covered providers of my choice, even home birth, chiropractic, acupuncture, and massage. That is truly progressive and preventative medicine.
  • I would love to have my dome home and an electric vehicle.
  • I think I would really enjoy being on the providing side of these sentiments through owning my own community- my dream of Atira gets clearer with every day I’m alive.
  • I look forward to a day when I know my efforts help produce profits that go to good charitable causes instead of investors bank accounts.
  • I look forward to having a hand in those charities as well; a way to make a greater and even more positive and lasting impact.
  • I look forward to easier times ahead for me and my family.
  • I look forward to being able to take vacations occasionally with enough budget to do so easily and comfortably. Even once a year would be grand.
  • I look forward to experiencing the cafe and bistro I’ve dreamed of where I can walk in knowing there are multiple truly healthy and truly tasty options to choose from.
  • I look forward to being able to stay home on messy winter days and being able to take full advantage of those perfect sunny days, even if it’s just a walk in the park.
  • I look forward to being able to release my CDL comfortably knowing I no longer need to keep it as a backup plan, let alone my source of income. There are plenty of people that love driving more than I do.
  • I look forward to having a great playground in my close knit community…. And a dog park… And trails… Mmmm good.
  • I look forward to manifesting greater good in this world for God. I choose the archetypes Shiva (Zeus/Poseidon), Kali (Hera/Brighid), Ganesh (Hermes/Mercury), etc., because they resonate with me and I have such a layered understanding of God’s aspects. Regardless, we are here to further manifest on behalf of God. We are conduit for the Divine to produce more, and I acknowledge the weight of that willingly. I choose to do better, to strive for better, and to leave a positive mark on this world. Part of me wishes everyone had that same intense desire, and on some level we all do, but I acknowledge some are simply not able to accomplish what I am reaching for. I hope that I am able to accomplish what I am reaching for.

With that, my bath is cold and I am going to reach for tax progress with the remainder of my evening. Adeau and Happy St. Pat’s day if I don’t get a chance to write again before then. Blessings everyone.