My Amazing Brain

Photo courtesy of Wikimedia Commons under the Free Art License 1.3

Photo courtesy of Wikimedia Commons under the Free Art License 1.3

My Amazing Brain is just that, super amazing, super awesome, and completely insane. Let me just give you a few examples of how it works. First, I got caught up watching the cutest kitten video on Facebook. Then secondly, I decided to blog and save my draft for tomorrow but got caught up looking at pictures, which included lots of kittens. C.) I found this simply fantastic photo of a light bulb with smoke coming out of it and decided it was a representation of what my brain is probably like most of the time. Should I go on? I can…but won’t bore you with the details. Wait! Look a shiny object just jumped by the window! Sorry, no, only a wildebeest traipsing through the front yard .

See how that light bulb is cracked, so is my amazing brain. It’s broken. I’m not on drugs but thanks for asking. I am however, a recovering drug addict but I don’t think that has anything to do with my brain being cracked. It’s that I’m cracked. I enjoy being a lot  little weird. Only the very best of us are. We get called names such as silly, crazy, weird, strange, odd, eccentric, bizarre, and the list goes on. I’m a firm believer that everyone has something that says, “hey, I am unique.”

imposter

I only added the above picture because I think it is a nifty graphic. “Imposter!” Sometimes I feel like an imposter. The feeling that my brain and my mind are two separate things leads me to question, “what is this thing, the brain?” and  “what is this thing, the mind?” (This is a huge philosophical conundrum and let’s not go down the fork of that dilemma for the time being). I’m just going to assume here that the mind and the brain are one and the same. That leads me to also assume that my mind is amazing as well! How cool is that? So all those feelings I have are also pretty damn amazing. In fact, thinking is damn amazing and fantastic as well. I am a conscious creature in a not so perfect world just try to be. And so are you. So is everyone. Think about that for a minute or two. We’re all just trying to be. How come it is that we have some many problems when we should be focusing on the joys of living?

Image provided by Wikimedia Commons licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0

Image provided by Wikimedia Commons licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0

If you simply cannot think of anything wonderful, helpful, or inspiring than the here’s a picture of a kitten. I’ll call her Princess Alexandria but you may call her whatever you like. I know several people with terminal illnesses that see the joy in the smallest of things. I don’t want to get sick before I discover BLISS, HOPE, FUN, LOVE, JOY, HYSTERICAL FITS OF LAUGHTER WITH FRIENDS and HAPPINESS (which by the way is not a destination but you find it along the road when you’re not looking) to name a few. So, check out your Amazing Brain and join the Club of Crazies and you’ll know you’ve found the yellow brick road…

 

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Letting Go

Photo by  Hellebardius @ https://www.flickr.com/x/t/0094009/photos/libaer2002/542897396/ licensed under Creative Commons

Photo by Hellebardius @ https://www.flickr.com/x/t/0094009/photos/libaer2002/542897396/ licensed under Creative Commons

Letting go of someone seems like you’re living in an empty house. However, the emptiness either exists in your heart or your head or both. No one is there anymore. You’ve lost an important “something” in your life. Sometimes, it’s easier to feel angry than sad. I have a lot of friends that go with anger and then become bitter. I have always felt bad for this group of people because they don’t seem to go on with their lives. They live in the past and long for the person that left.

Photo by Alain Bachellier @  https://www.flickr.com/x/t/0098009/photos/alainbachellier/7469217244/ licensed under Creative Commons

Photo by Alain Bachellier @ https://www.flickr.com/x/t/0098009/photos/alainbachellier/7469217244/ licensed under Creative Commons

The other way of letting go of someone is to look at what’s ahead and move forward through the sadness. Eventually it will go away and in the meantime you can achieve your goals and work through your “stuff” in a healthy way. Speaking for myself, this is what I do when I need to let go of unhealthy people. I’m not saying it’s easy. Letting go of someone is always difficult, especially if the heart is involved. I’m only using two examples, I’m sure there are many more. Everyone has let go of someone in their lives. How did you do it and how did it feel?

Posted in Relationships | Tagged , , | 7 Comments

Knee Replacement and Physical Therapy

Photo by  gnuckx @ https://www.flickr.com/x/t/0098009/photos/gnuckx/11640401205/ licensed by Creative Commons

Photo by gnuckx @ https://www.flickr.com/x/t/0098009/photos/gnuckx/11640401205/ licensed by Creative Commons

My partial knee replacement is about three weeks old. My scar requires some odd, brand new technology in order to smooth it out and make it heal better. It’s a silicone based transparent sticky strip that spends days over my incision line. I can even shower with it on.  I’m now out of the pain I was in prior to the surgery. I still have a little surgery pain but nothing like it was before they put in the replacement. Yeah for me! The surgery took all of 45 minutes and I woke up hungry so they allowed me to eat a sandwich.  I’ve also taken steps to go to physical therapy.

picture by gnuckx @  https://www.flickr.com/x/t/0091009/photos/gnuckx/11641068154/ licensed by Creative Commons

picture by gnuckx @ https://www.flickr.com/x/t/0091009/photos/gnuckx/11641068154/ licensed by Creative Commons

All of this seems like a maze of insanity. I was put on Warfarin, a blood thinner, because you can get blood clots after a knee replacement. I have to take this medication daily, usually at night and I have to have it monitored by a finger stick. Right now I’m above the range the doctor wants me at so I’m eating broccoli, which you normally cannot eat. It’s suppose to lower the range and I love broccoli so I’m happy I get to eat it.

Physical therapy has been great although they haven’t gotten to the difficult part yet. Instead, I get my leg massaged and I do less aggravating exercises until my incision closes tighter. My therapist is great and I feel very lucky to have her. Though one of these days when I’m having to push 100 pounds with my legs, I may come to dislike her.

Overall, I’m quite happy with the outcome and my decision to have my knee partially replaced. Have you ever had some type of health issue you struggled with for a long time? Have you had anything done to fix it and were happy or unhappy with your decision?

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Creative Commons Heroes

Gecko by  Ed Suominen @ https://www.flickr.com/x/t/0091009/photos/edsuom/12896192624/ under licence CC BY-NC 2.0

Gecko by Ed Suominen @ https://www.flickr.com/x/t/0091009/photos/edsuom/12896192624/ under licence CC BY-NC 2.0

When I first started blogging I didn’t realize that I couldn’t go into Google Images and download any picture I wanted to use on my blog. Sure this is easy but many of those images are copyrighted and using them without permission is a big no-no. I think I finally figured this out after 8 blogs. I read about Flickr’s Creative Commons and joined a few groups that allow the use of photographers’ pictures free. Sadly, it’s difficult to find photos that fit my blog exactly.  I have to work around what I find but usually come up with some great pictures.

Simple Sunset by Ed Suominen @https://www.flickr.com/x/t/0095009/photos/edsuom/13131730393/ licensed under CC BY-NC 2.0

Simple Sunset by Ed Suominen @https://www.flickr.com/x/t/0095009/photos/edsuom/13131730393/ licensed under CC BY-NC 2.0

The photographers that allow the use of their photos are my heroes. I’m going to mention one in particular because I’ve used his work before, Ed Suominen. All three photos used in this blog are his and all of them are not only beautiful but he allows bloggers and others to use them as long as we give him an attribution. That is, we use his name in association with his pictures. I have started to go a bit further and add the links as well, so that anyone can find the photographers work. Without these talented, kind people my blog would be a bunch of boring words. That’s great and all (not really!) but I love to see pictures within blogs. Thank you to everyone who provides bloggers with photos free of charge. You are my Creative Commons Heroes.

Orchids by Ed Suominen @ https://www.flickr.com/x/t/0092009/photos/edsuom/13271862704/ licensed under CC BY-NC 2.0

Orchids by Ed Suominen @ https://www.flickr.com/x/t/0092009/photos/edsuom/13271862704/ licensed under CC BY-NC 2.0

I don’t know Ed Suominen personally but I’m grateful he allows me to show off his lovely work. Ed, you are my hero for today. Your pictures are truly gorgeous. Cheers!

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The Biggest Lie You Can Tell Yourself

Photo by gnuckx @ https://www.flickr.com/x/t/0099009/photos/gnuckx/11640952854/ licensed under CC BY 2.0

Photo by gnuckx @ https://www.flickr.com/x/t/0099009/photos/gnuckx/11640952854/ licensed under CC BY 2.0

 

What do you do when you find yourself alone? Sometimes, that sounds great doesn’t it? Especially if you’re a mother with lots of children running around or you have several jobs to pay the bills. Then time alone is a wonderful respite. But what if you don’t want to be alone? What if that alone time feels more like loneliness? Loneliness is not a feeling most of us enjoy. Speaking for myself, I enjoy being alone but too much of it makes me feel lost. Then I start thinking, which is never good under these circumstances. My brain tells me lies: no one loves me, no one cares about me, no one calls me, no one knows I exist.

The biggest lie is that I’m insignificant.

When I feel like I’m standing at the end of a pier all by myself there are a number of things I can do to erase the lies including the biggest one of all.

First, I need to have an attitude of gratitude. This can include getting a pen and paper and writing down all the things I’m grateful to have in my life. My family, friends, a vehicle that runs, reading, writing, baseball, movies. Anything that makes me happy generally ends up on my list.

Second, I call a friend and we laugh. Whoever said laughter is the best medicine is right. Sharing a laugh makes the lies vanish immediately. Then I get a wonderful understanding; I’m not alone at all. I’m never alone unless I choose to be…it’s a choice. So is loneliness. I can call that same friend and meet for coffee or we can go for a walk together.

Lastly, I don’t need to sit in front of the television and feel sorry for myself. Unless I want that, again, it’s all a choice. I can get on my computer and write or I can journal and acknowledge my feelings and move on. Then I can pick out a good book, the one I’ve been wanting to read, take a deep breath, and plunge into another world. Books are wonderful companions. I’m never lonely with a good book in my hands.

#getyourwriteon #family #friends #books #writing

Posted in Lies You Tell Yourself | Tagged , , | 9 Comments

4 Bald Men

Jordi 01 © studio.es by Vincent Boiteau @  http://www.flickr.com/x/t/0090009/photos/2dogs_productions/2476791370/ licensed by CC BY 2.0

Jordi 01 © studio.es by Vincent Boiteau @ http://www.flickr.com/x/t/0090009/photos/2dogs_productions/2476791370/ licensed by CC BY 2.0

Who knew we’d get stalked by 4 bald men? When my friend Teresa and I were about 13 years old we use to sneak out at night and meet with two of our friends who lived down the street. Actually, it was a few blocks away but probably no more than a mile or so. Teresa would stay at my house and we would wait for Mom to go to bed, then we’d go meet with Sean and Matt. Sean and Teresa would make out while Matt and I listened to music. I think sometimes we would smoke cigarettes but usually Matt and I would get my mother’s car keys and turn on the radio to listen to Dr. Demento. It was probably close to two in the morning. We had a detached garage so we would generally hang out there. However, Teresa and I would climb out the window of my bedroom and go meet the guys and we’d all come back to my garage. This meant for a mile it was just two 13 year olds girls walking down a busy street very late at night or quite early in the morning. Not safe and Mom would have stroked out if she had known.

Home by Robert S. Donovan @ http://www.flickr.com/x/t/0092009/photos/booleansplit/8640780133/ licensed by CC BY 2.0

Home by Robert S. Donovan @ http://www.flickr.com/x/t/0092009/photos/booleansplit/8640780133/ licensed by CC BY 2.0

No cell phones back then either. One night, we got to Matt’s house to see what was taking them so long. At his window, we found out they got busted by his mother so they couldn’t come out. That meant Teresa and I had to walk back by ourselves. No big deal. That was until the 4 bald men  started following us. I am not joking. This is not a fictional story. They were in a car, which slowed down, and they tried talking to us. Finally, after not getting a response, they came to a stop and all of them got out of the car. Teresa and I could see they were not only completely bald but wore matching tan trench coats. We RAN as fast as we could. They got back in their car and followed us so we jumped a fence and waited. Unfortunately, the backyard we chose to hide in had two large German Shepherds. One of them bit me but it was better than being abducted by 4 bald men!

Color My World by Loco Steve @ http://www.flickr.com/x/t/0097009/photos/locosteve/4532479373/ licensed under CC BY 2.0

Color My World by Loco Steve @ http://www.flickr.com/x/t/0097009/photos/locosteve/4532479373/ licensed under CC BY 2.0

We felt trapped but waited patiently. Finally, we felt it was safe, jumped back over the fence and got back home. The bald men must have either lost us or got tired of waiting. It had to be one of the strangest experiences of my young life. Really, who gets chased by 4 bald men wearing matching trench coats? Teresa and I decided that was the last night we’d ever go out. Even today, I have to wonder if it was all a weird dream I made up because it’s such an odd story.

Smoke Plume by William Warby @ http://www.flickr.com/x/t/0091009/photos/wwarby/11774518245/ licensed under CC BY 2.0

Smoke Plume by William Warby @ http://www.flickr.com/x/t/0091009/photos/wwarby/11774518245/ licensed under CC BY 2.0

Like smoke that disappears after a bit, maybe my story changed over time. But if that’s true, how come I can remember it with such detail? Have you ever had an experience that was so unreal that you doubt it ever occurred?

 

 

Posted in My Crazy Life | Tagged , , | 2 Comments

Telling Stories Through Case Studies

I thought this general information is important for some of us job seekers who cannot afford to write for peanuts. Thank you Lisa!

Live to Write - Write to Live

If you enjoy helping people tell their stories, case studies might be a good fit for your writing business.

Companies seek professional writers (and pay well) for these effective marketing tools known as case studies.

Basically, case studies tell the story of how a customer decided on, purchased, and is using a particular product (or service) to improve their business.

Case studies can be as short as a few paragraphs (but the shortest I’ve done is 1,200 words), to four or more pages. 

Tasks involved in writing case studies include:

  1. Choosing a niche (medical, manufacturing, and so on), doing some research, and finding a company to work with. LinkedIn is a great tool for finding companies and contacts within those companies. Start with a keyword and then fine-tune the results until you have some companies you are interested in working with and reach out with a letter of introduction.
  2. Getting the…

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