What We Tell Ourselves and What Really Happens

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I haven’t been to a wedding in ages, and this month I went to two. Above is a picture of the bride and me (sorry about the red eyes), and below a shot of bride and groom (second wedding). Both absolutely beautiful, both showing excellent promise for true happiness.

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That’s what I told my friend Jody, as I was showing her the pictures.

My friend, Jody, is divorced. So, as I was scrolling through the photos, and telling her: they look so happy, don’t they, success stories, she agreed, but almost immediately added: that’s because you see the best in people. Because YOU want them to be happy. But life doesn’t always work the way we want it to.

I put the phone down, and came this close to snapping back with a certain remark, then I remembered. Jody’s story started just like the two couples’ stories, more or less, some twelve years ago. Two people in love, happily married, having a child … then … the end. There were lies, there was cheating, there were fights, there was a divorce.

It’s natural to tell ourselves things we want to believe, expect the best in people. Especially at a wedding. But there is some truth in what Jody said, and I had to admit to her that while both couples looked perfectly in love, there is a serious challenge ahead for one couple (both are PhDs looking for teaching jobs, which in one of their professions might not be so easy to find. Depending on the offer, they might have to live hundreds of miles apart, and that’s a serious test). But I’m sure they’ll be fine.

Anyway, Jody said there are two kinds of people in the world, and she had a lot of time to think about this since her divorce: those who expect the best from people around them (be it when it comes to a wedding, a conversation), and those who expect the worst. And managing our expectations, especially when it comes to promises, or when we question motives, is important.

What do you think about the two-group scenario? Hard to do at a wedding, but maybe for life, in general:   1.  Expect the best and possibly be disappointed.   2.   Expect the worst and hope for the best.  I’m not sure I could pull off the second, but maybe a combination?

Strange Happening and Awards

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The universe must be either perfectly aligned or completely out of whack in the blogging/social media world.  I haven’t posted on this here blog since last Friday, and logging in today a surprise awaited.

Usually, when I don’t blog for some time the viewership goes down. And that’s fine, I’m here to have a conversation, hang out with friends — that’s my reward. But this time, the stats told a different story. The viewership went through the roof on Wednesday with 130 views, and Thursday, at 194 views.

I’m not complaining, but it’d be nice if this made sense. I haven’t done anything differently — I tag the same, write the same, procrastinate the same.

Clicking through pages, I saw 150 viewers were sent here by Reddit, another social site as I understand, of which I’m not a member or have visited until today (that I remember). 

Don’t know what to make of it? What about you?

With that said, allow me to switch gears for a minute. I am the proud recipient of three blogging awards. (My friends, you rock!) I am so feeling the love. I don’t take awards for granted, even if it takes me a while to post.

Since we’re talking three awards, I’m going to bend the rules a little, if you don’t mind. Am going to select a couple of questions from each, answer, and invite all of you (who don’t already have the awards, :-)) to be my nominees. Take it please. You deserve it.

1.  The Wonderful Team Member Readership Award

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My blogging friend Sammy at Bemuzin nominated me for this super-wonderful award.  Sammy is one of the best bloggers I have come across — honest, very thorough with her comments, everything a writer hopes for. Thank you, Sammy. 

This is an award focused on rules, but here is what I say: Make your own rules, and above all be a good blogging friend.

2. The One Lovely Blog Award.

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This lovely award was given to me by Alli at Eclectic Alli.  Here’s why I love blogging: people like Alli: great blog, amazing reader, super-cool award. Thank you, Alli. For this, I have to share seven (or a couple of) things about myself:

1. I play guitar (only two chords, E minor and G). My husband is the real musician, and over the years he’s tried to teach me, but I tell you this: it’s not easy playing guitar — your hands have to stretch in a certain (weird) way. Piano is more my speed, but I do love guitar music. 

2. I speak 2.5 languages. How is that possible, you ask? Well, I understand a large amount and can speak some Italian, only because it is very close to my native Romanian. The other two? You guessed: Romanian and English. For some reason, Italian is my current favorite (may be the fact I haven’t fully conquered it yet).

3. The Versatile Blogger Award.

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I was nominated for this special award by Karen at Karen’s Different Corners. Thank you, Karen. Love being versatile. :) And in the interest of keeping this post short, here are two more things about your truly:

1. I used to run 5 and 10K races with friends, and loved every moment. While I haven’t done them in some time, would love to start again. Kept me in shape. Now, I just go on walks and on my treadmill (not as much fun).

2. One of my most ardent goals is to see my novel in print one day. So, I keep working on it after each set of feedback notes, keep plugging away. 

Thank you to my three blogging friends for nominating me, for sharing their experiences, and for continuing to read my blog. You all make it worthwhile.

Hugs. Love. Peace.

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Image courtesy: sacredascensionmerkaba

How Has Your Summer Been Thus Far?

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Oh, summer. It tempts us with a myriad of delights, each more irresistible than the next. Fresh fruit, plenty of sunshine, the beach, the pool, you name it. 

Of course, here in Southern California, our summer is more or less eternal, but there’s something extra special about the summer months when kids are out of school, the days are longer and everyone is out enjoying life.

As a kid, I adored summer.

Having grown up in a country with harsh winters, summer was the absolute best for more reasons than one. I still love it, although I’d say spring and fall are slowly taking over a larger piece of  my heart. Spring for its renewed energy and change and beauty. Fall for its gorgeous colors and cool breeze and peace.

Our summer is still going strong here even if my son is back in school (5th grade). I know, there is something wrong about school starting so early, but we make amends to our lives, our summers, accordingly.

So, how has your summer been so far, dear blogging friend? Are you looking forward to fall? Enjoying the season to the very last minute?

Since I have no extra wisdom to impart today, blame it on the hot sun, I will leave you with this beautiful summer poem.

Be well. Stay safe. And enjoy what’s left of summer, for it shall soon fade into a season of colors and leave us.

The summer sun shone round me,
The folded valley lay
In a stream of sun and odour,
That sultry summer day.

The tall trees stood in the sunlight
As still as still could be,
But the deep grass sighed and rustled
And bowed and beckoned me.

The deep grass moved and whispered
And bowed and brushed my face.
It whispered in the sunshine:
“The winter comes apace.”

~~ by Robert Louis Stevenson

 

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Image courtesy: www.nakedfeetyoga.com

IWSG: Falling in Love

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Writing. It’s a business where you fall in love with something with all your heart and have to try to find that one other person who feels the same way. The dream editor.

Good luck, you say.  

If that’s not enough to make one batty, we have those long stretches of silence when, after having crafted a query letter, synopsis and bio, after having sent everything out the writer just waits. And waits. And waits.

But such is our business. At the moment, I have a short story and a novel out to editors. One editor is working on a timeline, she promised to get back to me in three months. The short story, however, is just out there in the ether, the sole evidence of it having departed being in the Sent folder of my email.

I understand editors are busy and they too have their own insecurities in placing the right story for their beloved readers, in answering to their own bosses, and perhaps advertisers.

And so I wait.

Of course I fill my time with writing and reading, but there is always that one question in the back of a writer’s mind: will they love the one thing I fell in love with as much as I do?