Wednesday, October 2, 2013

Just Breath

Dear Uncle George,

I have had to take a small step back from the photo world, away from its sorting, weeding, editing, taking, blah blah blahism so that I can do some really interesting things.

Like vacuuming.  Paying bills.  And sometimes making dinner.

Seeing all these animals in one place actually 
is very embarrassing.  

Actually, Heavenly Father knew what timing would be exactly right for me to start my mission.  Life has been driving the car as The Boy's therapist says, which in psychology world is apparently a bad thing.  Well, she doesn't say "bad" but some nice 11th grade word like "undesirable."  Coming from Alaska, we prefer the phrase "jacked up" whether we have an 11th grade education or not.  Whatever the phrase is for the mid west, it happened to me.

You can read all about here:
(In Rotary, when we cross different programs to promote each other, we call that "cross pollination."  And in Alaska, my dad calls it "North Road, cross-eyed, ***** inbreeding.")

It is all different now.  It is strange, weird and wonderful.  But only to an extent.

Most people are running around this country with their "hair on fire" (not be confused with "Man On Fire"--a very violent 10 year old movie that we finally saw edited last night---well, all but the last 15 minutes because the "tape" ran out--speaking of tape, duct tape anyone?--which growing up, duct tape was such a precious commodity in my house that the tape literally had an entire kitchen drawer to itself.  Creasy Bear must have stopped by my old Alaska house which is now a thrift store to pick some up--which to answer your question, no, I cannot see Russia--but some pretty dang amazing mountains).

 This is Fun's parent's porch

People are sooooo busy letting their life drive them that many of them would pay a zillion dollars to have a more time.

Now that we, as a family (because I mean really, if it is happening to someone in the family, it really is happening to everyone--yep, learned that in the $261/hour psychology session) have survived so many things, not just this summer but in the last several years, things are going SO good right now it almost scares me.

Like having too much free time. For some folks, it can be "undesirable."  Some folks like me.

It is not that I make bad choices with my free time. I am not looking at naughty things on the internet or sitting home watching Jerry Springer. I am not spending too much money at the Wal-Mart or eating fancy meals somewhere fancy like Overland Park.  Or Trimble.

It is just that I am a worker.  A "builder" as Foster Sister Juni said to me once."There are builders and there are takers," she said.  I bet she would be surprised I remember that conversation.  Especially since it was years ago and seriously, I cannot remember what I did Thursday.  But in two months, I will remember what I did on Thursday after it has processed through the Rolodex of my epileptic mind.

I didn't realize how much time RYLA--Leadership Academy really required.  I didn't realize there are some pieces that I will miss terribly.  And there are some things I will not.

I will miss these kinds of life changing moments for kids

I will miss seeing the talented kids 

Most of all, I will miss the amazing people who I have loved and worked with for a decade.

But now is my time, I have figured out, to focus on myself.  Which, looking at those words, it is very out of character for me to say it.  Focusing on myself is not something I do.  It is not my style.  It is not my nature.  

But it is necessary.  And somewhat....sorta....kinda welcomed.

I feel guilty about taking alone walks everyday.  I feel guilty that my schedule is not packed to the gills and that I actually have days in a row on the calendar that I have unconsciously and consciously carved out for myself.  What does a girl do with all this time?

Projects at home.


Travel.  Travel.  And travel some more.

See things like art museums, have snacks like herbal Chinese water in a fancy teacup, and watch "America's Top Model" with the family (don't let Mr. Fun trick you, he watches too...we can't stand Alexandra and Jordan...just get over it Jordan....perhaps she needs The Boy's psychologist phone number).

And breath.  As that Faith Hill song says "just breath."
So, as I catch my breath, I have learned some things about myself.

I like club dance music.  Not the extended versions.   I don't know what they are saying but I like the beat. Super duper loud.  I am losing my hearing anyway, so what do I care. jk

I like traveling alone.

I like to text.  So handy.

I like walking three or four miles alone everyday.

I like to be able to look at my images more objectively which I can then weed faster.

I like not taking pictures of people.  I already knew that, but it is really clear to me.

I like having a clean table.

I like having a new porch roof.  I REALLY like that.

I like reading books about modern art and a Jesus book that is not LDS.  There is some really really good stuff in there about how I can improve my relationship with The Savior.

I like to listen to one song over and over when I am working on the computer.  I mean for hours.  The first time I did it is when we listened to "Flash Gordon" for 5-6 hours, blaring.  It was the day we buried Tom and he loved that song.

I like recollecting of the amazing life I have been blessed with.

I like giving stuff away.

I like do small acts of service.  No organization.  No expectation.

I like thinking about my past.  The friends that we have known before we got to Missouri.  Sometimes I miss them so much that the other day I cried in the kitchen while making Hawaiian Haystacks.  Fortunately, I had my Rotary medal on which made me feel better.  Sometimes I wear it when I cook because, I mean really, where else can a girl wear a medal?  

Foster Sister Juni and Sheri
We have been friends since 9th grade.  Eh, just a mere 30 years.

Tiel and I have been friends 24 years.
You know where we met?  Leadership camp.  In Alaska.
Natalie and Cheryl
I consider these ladies some of my best friends I never see.

Man, I love me some Rotarians

It has been "cathartic" (this has to be a college word--thanks VT Alanna) to define myself again.

I am learning to like it.  A lot.

With this breathing "treatment" comes so new adventures.  New loves in my life to be enjoyed.

And of course, my photography mission.

Boy Scout Centennial

Temple Gold Leafing
Wet again.  Sensing a theme here

Thanks for listening to the ramblings of some great-grand niece you haven't met.  Yet.

One more thing, speaking of Rotary, I am "back in the boat" as Dave says.  Word is getting out and it won't be long that I will have plenty to keep me busy.

Breathing treatment will be over. 

And that is "desirable."  :)
Love,  Valsy

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