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emmy [AT] curious-notions {dot} net
August 2022
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count your blessings instead of sheep

Thankful Thursdays: The people edition. Without comment, except for the fact that this is the most important edition out of all of them.

  1. Bear
  2. Linda
  3. Mom
  4. Carl
  5. MIL (name on the internet)
  6. BIL
  7. Grandma South
  8. Members of the Clan
  1. Cooper
  2. The Kid
  3. Mr Cranberry
  4. Mrs Cranberry
  5. Mr. Washy
  6. Left
  7. Mrs Right
  8. Mr Right
  9. AJ

I’ve got you to save me

Gilligan Brain forwarded me this blog post about routines that lead to happiness. And that got me thinking. I have a few routines that are either every day or every week that make me really happy. Not surprisingly, they involve Brain, Bear and Carl. Every day when Bear gets out of the car, we tell each other we love each other and to have a good day and we do a quick kiss. Sometimes I grab a second one. Every day when we get home, we hug after we get inside the house. Before we change or start dinner or do anything except put down our stuff, we hug. Sometimes Bear drapes himself on me or … well… bear hugs me. Sometimes I stick myself to him and don’t let go for a long while. But always a hug. Every day almost without fail, Brain and I gchat. Almost every day we ask each other how the other is doing and exchange I love yous. Almost every week, one day on his drive home, Carl calls me to catch up. I always tell him I love him. He always rushes and says it back.

Something else I realized: I missed my long commutes after Bear and I moved into an apartment. Weird huh? But I would come up with my blog posts or I’d make up stories to entertain myself or it was prime catching up with Bear time. Then it was gone and I never gave myself that time when I was at home. Then we moved into the house and our commute varies from 30 mins to an hour or an hour and a half if something is very wrong. And for a few months now, I’ve been upset when I’m commuting. It hit me last week that I MISSED THIS TIME. Why was I upset about getting it back?? And since then, I haven’t been. I’ve been blogging again. I’ve been dreaming again. It’s great. I still wish the traffic wasn’t so variable. I hate not knowing how long it’s going to take any one day to get to work or to get home, but one day I’ll figure it out. I already know, rain is bad. Cloudy or cold days are good. Sunny gorgeous warm days after a period of cold is bad. Friday from 3:00 until 6:00 is disgusting. :)

(Brain, song is “Yer So Bad” by Tom Petty)

while we were laughing and smoking and drinking

Today started off rough and got worse. Got up, took Bear to work, went to the post office and home to get my shit and ran back to school to meet a new guy because his installs on his personal laptop aren’t working. Walked in to find out that he just left for “class” despite telling me that his class didn’t start for 40 minutes after I showed up. I swallowed that down, because if it weren’t for him, I wouldn’t have gone in today. I ended up answering a lot of questions about an assignment I created for a class that two students I’m in the lab with are taking, so I’m telling myself it was worth it.

I then started working on the next assignment I’m giving (thankfully I’m only giving two). The last one, creating the assignment went pretty well and was fun except for figuring out exactly what to ask. This one, just figuring out what the assignment should cover or how it should cover it was hell. The tools I have available BLOW in terms of documentation. One is so bad I think the creators and collectors for the different tools don’t even understand the concept. I spent hours just figuring out which stupid Pin tools do what. I’m still not sure whether one metric I want is available or if I’d have to create my own tool (not doing that). Some of these tools give numbers and I’m like…. WHAT DOES THAT EVEN SIGNIFY? And gprof failed me. The program we want the students to work on it too short for it to get actual timing for each of the functions and if I make them use a longer version it defeats the point of using this program. So I’ve spent an increasing amount of time glaring and huffing and growling at my computer screen while I work my way through what feels like three billion different tools that are all undocumented and some without any kind of readable LABELS trying to piece together enough information to ask the students for any kind of analysis of the assembly they are supposed to deconstruct.

In the middle of all this my mom tells me that IE doesn’t work for her anymore. I spend a lot of time fighting with her to get logmein set up on her computer (omg, how did my mother forget how to figure out the USERNAME for her account on her laptop???? how did she not already KNOW IT???????????). Eventually I log in and start poking around with IE and realize that the pages that have the most trouble use java, but I can’t click any links and I can’t click buttons and I was losing my mind. Finally I was like, I don’t know. I asked Bear to check it out and he said, you can’t install anything either. So I tried, and it’s fucked. I thank Bear for spend half an hour during his workday messing with my mom’s computer and I call her back. I tell her, do you see this isn’t working? It’s worse than you thought. And she says (I have it on my phone, she actually said this) “The cat did it.” My response: “That is not acceptable mother.” It was at least worth a shocked giggle I guess. My brother got about a million IMs during this going, “where is our mother’s brain?” and “I’m going to kill her.” His response was to make sure I didn’t make a mess. I really do thank God for giving me my brother. Bear and he are my boys.

So yeah. I’ve now racked up more than 24 hours playing with assembly instructions and really frustrating tools for this assignment alone and I haven’t written a solution yet. In addition to my mother acting brainless and like a 5th grader, I had a new labmate stand me up. I can’t tell if I’d be more frustrated if I’d found out he never showed than knowing he showed, he just decided not to stick around. But I really really want to do something that WORKS right now. I just don’t know what. I’m worried if I try to read, the story will be bad or silly or not make enough sense for me right now and I’ll just combust from the accumulated frustration.

Two working arms and legs

I’m sucking at the blogging again. But I had family in town and then I went out of town and then I had Linda in town. Seriously, the last three weekends have been very busy and! at work I’ve been trying to do my research and I picked up 10 hours of TA work.

So I have all kinds of rambles in my head. I was going to say lately, but really? That would have been a big fat lie considering I ramble all the time in my head about all kinds of things. Lately it’s about what makes us happy. Not like that TED talk where the dude was talking about synthesizing happiness. Although maybe. I meant, like, in the moments where you aren’t working towards your big goals in life, where you aren’t worrying about money or family, what makes it possible for us to be happy? Definitely part of it is the way we process our lives. If your mind constantly sticks on the amount of calories in the food you ate or the money you spent or that thing so and so said to you, it’s going to be very hard to be happy. If you treat others badly, that takes its toll on you too. There’s a million tiny things that can clearly be signs of people just not being happy or content with their lives.

I’ve met happy people who aren’t depressed, but are in a bad relationship or are struggling with family or money problems. They are still happy people, despite whatever struggles they’ve invited into their lives or they’ve taken upon themselves.

I’ve met unhappy people who aren’t depressed, but have the best luck and refuse to see it. They manage to be accomplished at work and have good days just like the happy people, but you’d never know it from how they talk.

I’ve met happy and unhappy depressed people. It took me a while to realize that depression doesn’t account for everything. Because it doesn’t. Because if it did, then how on earth could you have two people who clearly have clinical depression problems, but one manages to still see how wow, today was a good day, I’m just having trouble feeling that goodness and people who had the same types of things happen to them, but only feel the fact that they missed their bus.

So lately I’ve been trying to see, what do the happy people, depressed or not, have in common. What do the unhappy people have in common. I think it’s about respect and love. If you love yourself and life and you have respect for your life and other’s lives, this leads to happiness. It makes it easier to be happy.

Lately (this time it is true) I’ve become increasingly aware just how important respect is. Respect for yourself, for the people around you, for the things we have and the things we kill in order to make space for ourselves. Love for yourself and people in general and especially your loved ones.

I think most of us forget to love and respect ourselves. I don’t mean the stupid modern don’t let your kids become your life and take time for yourself and be selfish shit that people tend to abuse lately. I mean, loving the way you process the world around you. Appreciating how it’s different from other people. Deciding that your hair, despite all the ways you hate it, is interesting to you. I don’t know, there’s a million ways, none of them overt or time consuming, to love yourself.

If you aren’t happy that your skin is warm just behind your knees and the fact that your ankles hurt when you sleep on your stomach, how can you find amazement in how your husband’s back is warmer than behind his knees and that one of his feet is more crooked than the other? If you don’t appreciate that you get sad at old movies because black and white makes things too stark and be amazed at that quirk of your personality, how can you find the fact that your husband pretends to like horror movies but never watches them adorable or that your mom cries at movie weddings but not real ones hilarious? It’s not just that we should know these things about ourselves, but that we should like them. We should realize that we will never be anyone else in this world and that makes our quirks some of the most precious things in our lives. Underneath every interaction and ever touch you give, beats the fact that you love. That you know how valuable your touch is to you and thus to the people you touch. That everything you give, even to those who don’t appreciate it, comes from love and respect.

I wanted to end this post there, but I think I have a more concise way of saying what I’m trying to say. We only have one point of view in life. If we can’t like that point of view, how can we ever like what we see with it?