Some days are for work, some are for rest, and some days fall somewhere in between. Today was one of those in-between kinda days. A day for planning, upkeep, and the small to-dos. Things that are just as important but too often overlooked and undervalued.
What I mean to say is, today wasn’t a good writing day. I wanted it to be since I ended up getting out of some work duties I’d been dreading but when I finally got my butt in the chair, I couldn’t do it. I didn’t even really try to be honest. All I wanted to do was behind-the-scenes blog things and fill a notebook page or two with ideas to explore when my mind was ready.
In those small goals, I was productive, and that is something.
This is a first in all my years working for a school district. Schools were closed district-wide, and metro area-wide, for a “credible threat”. A woman came all the way from Florida with, authorities believed, the intention of doing our children, our colleagues, and our counterparts in neighboring districts too.
She’s dead now but there are a lot of unanswered questions left behind. There are always unanswered questions left and all of them the same—why?
We’ll return to work tomorrow and though the authorities and the media assure us there is no longer a threat, in my heart the threat is still very real. It has been for a very long time. I know compared to those working in the schools I’m relatively safe, but I’m not just afraid for me. I’m afraid for us all.
The 20th anniversary of the Columbine High School massacre is in just a few short days and there were rumors this woman had friends or supporters here and that they were going to help her to do…whatever it was she planned to do. We’re assured this isn’t true but what if there is something the authorities don’t know?
I hate that this is the reality of the world now. I hate that our schools are no longer safe places. I hate that killing children is a way for people to enact their revenge and to make their mark on history. I hate the fear most of all.
I woke up late, unrested, and with a nasty headache. If either of those setbacks had occurred on their own, I’d have been able to overcome it and make it into work, but when they all occur together, I simply cannot gather myself, get ahead of myself, and rally for the victory over myself.
So, I stayed home. I slept in the morning and in the afternoon—after I was properly rested and had beaten back the pain with a couple doses of naproxen—I spent the day cleaning and working through the current courses I’m taking. I wish I had done more writing and reading but every day can’t be for everything, not even days that are mine alone.
Tomorrow I’ll have to face what I left behind today: the work, the writing, and the reading. I just hope I can do it on time, with energy, enthusiasm, and a clear mind.
It shocked me to walk through the lounge at work today and see the terrible image of the Notre-Dame Cathedral engulfed in flames on TV. I’m no fan of religion but the church was, and certainly will still be, a marvel of human art and architecture. I am deeply saddened by the devastation and the loss that the building sustained.
Losses like these are shared among all of us, the whole human race. And when I say all I don’t just mean us who are living right now, us who are witnessing this terrible tragedy, but future generations who will never get to see the world and the past as we did. They’ve lost something too and through that lens, the devastation grows exponentially.
I myself never got to see the Cathedral and I’ll forever be sorry about that. I won’t get to experience it in the same way as those who came before me.
I’ve seen some mixed reactions to the burning Cathedral and rather than feeling one way or another I’m simply taking in the perspective and contemplating.
Being non-religious allows me to see this incident and this place in a more detached manner. I can see the lopsided response to this church burning and others. I can see the lopsided reaction to tragedies in some countries and the tragedies of others. I can sympathize with the bitterness and the outrage and I implore everyone to include this understanding in their grieving.
Today stands in stark contrast to yesterday. Today was not a perfect day. It wasn’t really even a good day though it had its moments and picked up toward the end. It was a lonely day full of small stinging pricks and old pains resurfacing. A low rage smoldered and self-pity hang about my mind like dreary rain clouds.
Tonight I’ll fall asleep with a smile on my face and a feeling of content in my limbs but my heart will be hard and heavy. It remembers longer than the body or the mind you know.
Hello dear readers! Happy Sunday and welcome. Thank you for stopping by for a bit of caffeine and catching up.
This Sunday I am up late and in a definite hurry. We have an appointment to take engagement photos a few towns over this evening so that means I have just a few short hours to get ready for tomorrow. Thank God the weather has turned around. The sun is shining, and it’s already warmer out than it has been in many days. I don’t think I could take another day of winter. Thank God for this cold brew too which is the only thing giving me any hope through today’s awful anxiety and doubt.
So, pull up and chair and, please, fill up a cup. I’ve no time for the Moka pot so blond cold brew it is. I promise you it’s good and I promise it will get the day moving.
Let’s talk about last week.
“When traveling with someone, take large does of patience and tolerance with your morning coffee.”
— Helen Hayes
If we were having coffee, I would tell you that this week was certainly a busy one. I started off by finishing up the work I had begun the week before. The new class of employees at work were ready for testing and a few need just a little more training. In addition to my route, I made sure they were all knowledgeable enough and confident enough to go out and work with our very special kids.
After that work eased off, but I had a lot of personal reading, writing, and learning projects I needed to catch up on. I’ve been taking a Modern & Contemporary American Poetry course on Coursera and while there seem to be no concrete deadlines for the quizzes or assignments I’ve set my own expectations and fallen behind.
I also needed to give The Double by Fyodor Dostoyevsky another chance. It’s been a hard book to start and more than once now I have read the first 10 pages and put the book back down to pick up something that resonates with my life experience, or the way my mind works a little better. Still, I am determined to get through it. Even in the first 10 pages, I can see the value of the book. This time I have a plan and a deadline in mind. This time I won’t give up.
If we were having coffee, I would tell you that on Thursday I had hoped for a snow day since we were forecasted to have another bomb cyclone blizzard but the conditions needed just never materialized. The snow started too late, and the temperatures had been too warm. The system stalled, and we all had to go to work the next day.
All in all, though, it wasn’t so bad. I made the most of it where I good and employed patience and a detached attitude where it was needed. Not even being put on a delayed schedule—in which the kids go to school anywhere from an hour to an hour and a half late—really ruined my mood. The worst of it was that through it all it was still only Thursday.
If we were having coffee, I would tell you that Friday was tough. The week had been long, my driver was out, and on top of it all, I agreed to help out by doing a route segment I’d never done before and transport kids I’d never met. I was very anxious, but I got to work with my girlfriend too and that helped.
Friday night I was ready to start my “birthday weekend”! My youngest sister (by 15 years!) picked me up for a night out. We ate Hawaiian barbeque, we went book shopping, and we went out for ice cream. SHe planned and paid for it all which made me feel so proud and grateful. She’s a good kid, and I must be doing something right as a big sister to be treated so well.
Saturday I had my “perfect day”. It’s what I do every year on my birthday, though each one is a little different. I plan my perfect breakfast, lunch, dinner, and dessert. I plan my perfect outing, and I buy myself something small (sometimes the something small turns out to be pretty big) and I spend the evening watching as many of my favorite things as I can.
This year I started with a bacon and egg breakfast burrito with spicy salsa. For my outing, I went to the Denver Museum of Nature and Science to check out the new Leonardo da Vinci exhibit. I had pepperoni pizza at Whole Foods for lunch and for dinner we made “king crab legs, roasted artichokes, shrimp and parmesan pasta, and plenty of butter, lemon, and garlic to cover all, oh, and a bottle of sweet Riesling to wash it all down”.
After dinner, we watched the new Donald Glover film starring Rihanna, Guava Island and ate coconut ice cream with strong coffee. I ended the night by watching Starship Troopers, one of my favorite films, for the 100th time.
If we were having coffee, I would tell you that this coming week should be another easy one. I have some small lingering work things I want to mark off of my to-do list but I’m hoping I’ll have plenty of free time to work on some big wedding things I need to get started on.
My fiance found her wedding dress last week, so it is my turn to pick out my attire. I’m not wearing a dress so that means it’s time for me to settle on a suit and get fitted. To be honest, I’m pretty terrified and at this point, I’m refusing to have any friends or family present except my fiance. As a queer woman it’s sometimes scary to enter men’s spaces just to find clothing you feel like yourself in and the more traditional the space the more nerve-wracking it can be.
Our invitations should arrive tomorrow and we’ll spend Monday evening putting them together and hopefully, if there are no errors, they’ll be out in the world by Tuesday. I have a ton of vendors to follow up with and deposits and payments will probably have to be made. Our rings should be ready by week’s end and on our way to us all the way from Australia.
Things are coming along and we are taking them one baby step at a time.
If we were having coffee, I would tell you that it’s time to head out to our photography appointment. We’ve got a long drive ahead of us and Sunday traffic is always worse than you imagine it will be.
I hope that you had a good week. I hope you are well and happy. I hope that you were able to overcome whatever set you back and that in the coming week you will make quick and significant progress in whatever way you need.
Until next time.
Written for the #WeekendCoffeeShare link-up hosted by Eclectic Alli.
Today is my birthday. It’s the first day of my 34th year on this Earth and in this life. Today is my perfect day.
We woke up at the perfect time, not so early that I felt groggy or grouchy, and not so late that I felt rushed or panicked. We ate breakfast burritos with spicy salsa and watched political shows and after my girlfriend and I cozied up on the couch for a nap while the snow fell, even the pets joined us.
We woke up and got ready for the day. I took a long hot shower and left knowing we’d have plenty of time to spend where we were going. By then the snow had picked up, and the temperature continued to drop which was disappointing. Snow, for me, is not perfect birthday weather. I lamented my spring birth by cheered as we pulled up to our destination, The Denver Museum of Nature and Science.
We toured an exhibit on the senses and got our monies worth and more from the fascinating and quite comprehensive Leonardo da Vinci exhibit. We found the Native American tribe’s exhibit and browsed the North American wildlife we’d missed on our last visit. We ended with a quick trip through my favorite area: rocks and minerals. It’s so boring I never force anyone to walk it with me unless it’s my day and I know I’m allowed some small entitlements.
We left and went for a lunch of pepperoni pizza and bought everything we needed for the perfect dinner: king crab legs, roasted artichokes, shrimp and Parmesan pasta, and plenty of butter, lemon, and garlic to cover all, oh, and a bottle of sweet Riesling to wash it all down.
We cooked together and played our favorite old love songs. We sang, and danced, and kissed throughout the kitchen and when the cooking was done we feasted right there at the island making a mess of it all.
After dinner, there was coconut ice cream with strong coffee poured over top. We watched Guava Island and then Starship Troopers for the 100th time.
It’s after midnight now. I stayed up until the very end not wanting to miss or waste a single moment of my day. It was perfect, as every birthday I have had for the last 17 years or so now has been, though each in their own way. Some are rowdy, drunken affairs, and some are like this one, quiet, reflective, simple.