Category Archives: Writing

Feng Shui for Me

11:32 AM

Today is my official second day of college.  I did my morning pages.  They revealed a lot.  I am confused about my college.  I do not know what it is yet.  I made a schedule that is not working.  I will be changing my curriculum.  I made classes that I do not want to go to.  Like drawing, just not feeling it.  I made requirements, I cannot maintain.  Dancing, I have not had energy after my cold.  I am disappointing myself and you but I have not danced in 5 days.  I have to cut down to three times a week.  It will take time to figure out a system.

Recently I bought three books on Feng Shui.  I want to learn Feng Shui because my husband and I are renovating our first home.  I have read one short book on Feng Shui years ago.  It is faint in my mind.  For a while used the concepts.  I made intentions, I moved furniture, I cleared clutter, I organized, I placed objects to symbolize things I wanted to manifest in my life, it worked every time.  Creating energy in my outer spaces consciously allowed my mind to have space.  I need more now.  We will be moving walls soon.  I want those walls to move consciously.

I was due to Draw 10:15-11:15 am but instead I picked up my Feng Shui A Practical Guide for Architects and Designers.  I am on page 11 and already I highly recommend this book (especially to you, Lisa).  It is grounded and smart.  A synchronicity happened on the second page.  The Feng Shui author started talking about Left and Right brain.  That sounded familiar, since my drawing text-book was Drawing with the Right Side of the Brain, I flipped the page and there it was, a reference to the Author of Drawing on the Right side of the brain by Betty Edwards, the very book I was supposed to study in my canceled drawing class.  It turns out she also has a book on Feng Shui.  This was a synchronicity not to be ignored.  It said, switching my curriculum is ok.   I am attracted to the same concepts, no matter what book I pick up.  Or they are attracted to me.

As I sat reading my book this morning, I was asking myself, what is it about Feng Shui that I love so much.  Why am I drawn to this subject.  The answer came quickly as I read the fundamentals.  Feng shui is a healing art.  It is seemingly about arranging space and furniture and cleaning your room but that is like saying yoga is about having a nice body.  If therapy works from inside out, Feng Shui works from outside in.  I can look at my environment and figure out my inner world.

Somewhat consciously, my husband and I created the space around ourselves in our current apartment.  In our creation of our first real home I want to be as conscious as I am in undertaking any new project going forward.  I want to know that every bit of energy I exert is for my own highest good and therefore for the highest good of everyone around me.  I want my home to be a sanctuary.

We went to see a renovation of this couple’s house in our neighborhood.  The wife  said that she wanted her home to be a sanctuary.  I cringed a little bit.  It sounded pompous to me to have such high aspiration.  But then I thought about it.  A sanctuary just means a place that is safe and sacred to you.  I am not about to put the Virgin Mary statue inside our house but I will be putting objects far more sacred to me, like Isaiah’s crib.

My first semester is to clear myself from inside out AND from outside in.

11:06 pm

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Dance Day 24, the Pill

9:36 pm

Again, I had no clue what to write about.  I checked my email and bingo an article from my dear husband on Homeopathy.  My passion to express myself came flooding  into my fingers.

Any movement in the homeopathic, natural medicine direction brings me joy.  I do not remember the moment when I became an advocate for natural (less is more medicine) approach.  There were a lot of signs for me in that direction but one stands out.  Allow me to vent the air.

When I was 19 or 20 years old, I was told that I have poly-cystic ovaries by a doctor who thought I must have this disease because my period was irregular.  He recommended for me to take the pill for the rest of my life and only get off when I wanted to get pregnant.  I did not know what the pill did but I knew it could not be so bad, since a lot of my friends were on the pill.  They claimed that their boobs grew.  That did not sound like a bad pill.  I got on.  I am already sensitive to my own hormone levels, on the pill, I was a raging maniac.  I cried, I was hungry, I was angry, I was unhappy.  I gained weight.  By the end of the few months, I felt like someone replaced my body.

After I got off, I lost my period.  I mean it, I did not have my period for over a year.

My mom called an old Russian OB who was a friend.  She gave me a list of vitamins to take in order to get back my cycle.  The list was 3 vitamins.  It was something like Vitamin D for 7 days, E for 7 days, Folic Acid for 7 days.  That is it.  My period was back.  I followed her cycle for few months and have been regular ever since.

Since then, I found out what happened to my body when I got on the pill.

It is convenient not to have a my period.

Oh but I still have my period, it is just lighter on the pill.

No, sorry, that was not your period.

That bleeding on the pill, it is just the withdrawal from the pill.  The lighter period was  just a marketing gimmick that is still working.  The inventors of the pill were smart.  They knew that women would stand on their ears if they found out that the pill makes them have no cycle.  NO CYCLE.  Women, goddesses, earth mothers, the connected spiritual guides of the planet, for the sake of convenience lets scrap our moon cycles!  Do you sense anger in my voice?

So yes ladies, you do not have your cycle at all when you are on the pill even though for seven days your pills are a different color.  You just think you do because your pills boxes are marked that way, 28 day cycle followed by 7 days of sugar pills.  Very clever way to keep women thinking they are still connected, don’t you think.

Google it. (this is one of millions of answers)

The thing that drives me crazy is not the doctors.  It is the people taking the pill.  Why are we so ready to pop something in our mouth that is powerful enough to stop us from having our cycle.  I love it that it is called cycle.  The cycle of life.  It is actually happening inside our bodies.  Life, Death, Rebirth.  Over and over, every month.  The cycle that is so powerful, it is capable of creation of life.  The most supreme divine power.

I have told a few friends on the pill that they are not having a period when they think they are and they were shocked by the revelation.  I think some of them did not even believe me.

I love that it is called “the pill” too.  It is easy to substitute it for any other pill for the sake of my story here.  We do not know what any of them do to our bodies.  We trust our doctors.  Trust but Verify.  Oh but medicine has come such a long way, look at our life expectancy now.  How dare you mock it, Olia.  Thank you for the long life expectancy doctors but my period is not a deadly disease.  It is one of those things that make me strong and healthy woman.

10:42 ( I wish I had more time on this topic) I posted it last night but to a wrong blog, oops

Dance Day 22, Being here

11:09 pm

Today I had pain on my heart.  When someone you love is suffering, it is hard to enjoy your day.  I tried my best to distract myself with my busy day but I could not focus.  Everything lost its importance today.  We had a long appointment with the architect figuring out our kitchen. I am passionate about where to put the island but not today.  I watched Yura and the architect make decisions.  I agreed to everything, I just wanted it to be over.

The first thing I want to do when someone is suffering is get them out of suffering.  I want to help them to make it stop.  In this situation, I can not help.  I can be there for them.   Be there for me.  My friend Lisa was there for me when I had a hard break up.  I went to her house to sleep over and just hang out but I got emotional and she stayed up all night talking to me while I cried.  I cried and cried and cried.  We went to bed at 4 am.  In the morning, I felt better.

Otherwise being there is just a figure of speech.  The only way Lisa could be there for me is because I was willing to open everything up to her.  If I did not bare my soul to her that night, she would not be able to be there for me, even if she was there.  It feels good to be there for someone and it feels good when someone is there for you.  One way that I know that I am not there is if I am trying to be there, but it feels like I am so far.  That is how I know I am not there.  I am here.

11:58 pm

Dance Day 21, Time Out!

7:43 pm

My sister asked me what do you do if someone lashes out at you in anger?  It was her comment for my post re-program (one of my favorites).  My first reply would be don’t take it on.  That’s what my therapist would say.  That is what all the wise books say.  I have tried it and in my Zen moments, it works.  But most of the time, I am not that enlightened.  How can I not take on someone’s anger when it is directed at me?  Especially if I think I am helping them.  Today, I had that experience and realized there is no way I can stay calm.  No Way!

When someone gets angry at me, I turn around and get angry at them or I get sad and cry, pure reflex.  Or better, I get passive aggressive.  A quiet aggression which is harder to detect as aggression.  It is more insidious because all I do is act hurt but inside I am boiling with anger, it spills out like green ooze, burning everything it is touching.  I look passive but I am aggressive.

Anyway you put it, anger directed at me = anger directed at you.  Lately though, I’ve been experimenting.  I do love my experiments.  I tried to talk calmly in the face of anger by keeping myself calm with breathing and reality checks.  This is a reality check: what they are saying is not true, it is their own anger talking.  At first it worked, but if the person ups the anger, it gets more challenging.  And I never know if they will reach my threshold.  I do not know how long I can hold down the fort, while they are firing away.

The only thing that has worked so far is to walk out of the room.  Time out!  This may seem like I am avoiding it but I am not.  It is the only way I can deal with it.  My intention is to calm myself  and try to help the other person get calm.   I am no Buddha.  If I stay in that room, I will take it and multiply it.  My therapist says, anger spirals down.  Energetically, I think that is what happens.  We go down lower and lower in a spiral into our darkest selves.  When we spiral into our most hidden ugly places everything is painful.  I picture that inside of us we all have our own hell.  Once in a while we descend there.  At that point we can only use defense or offense.

Isaiah is now 20 months old and he has been acting like it.  With more control of his hands and new teeth, came hitting and biting  people, including his own mama and papa.  To discipline him, we have been giving him time outs.  Time out is when I take him to his room and close the door for ONE minute.  It is revolutionary what change can happen in one minute.  The time out experts say it’s a minute for every year of your life.  For me, its 33 minutes, that sounds right.  During that minute he screams like he is being burned alive, a healthy way to get his aggression out in the privacy of his own room.  I used to stand by the door with my heart aching, but now I know we both need it.  Most of the time he walks in there a devil child and comes out smiling, transformed and calm.

These timeouts are sometimes more for me then him.  I can get angry when he is screaming and kicking me while I am trying to put on his diapers.  I know that is what babies do, but I don’t like being kicked when I am helping someone, do you?  Instead of taking out my anger at him, I put him and me into a time out.  We separate for one minute and return calmer and in love again.

The timeout saves mine and Isaiah’s relationship so why not save my other relationships with a little time out.  One day, I got really mad at Yura and shouted “Time out!  I am putting you in Time out!”  It is funny now.  Unfortunately, we cannot put our husbands or our parents into a time out.  All we can do is give it to ourselves.

10:43 pm

Dance Day 20, The Great Equalizer

11:13 am

Today is first day of Olia College.  I have a cold but I marched my butt to the computer.

This is the the curriculum.

Morning Pages cleared the cobwebs of my mind.  I was resisting my own invention.  I did not want to go to Olia College.  I am sick, tired and uninspired.   I vented in those three pages.  Now I am ready for School!

Dancing or Drawing.  Today I am too tired to dance so I drew my hand.  This is the first exercise of Drawing with the right side of the Brain.

Writing my first Draft.  That’s now.

My friend Michelle wrote about death yesterday.  She asked if people think about death or was it just her.  I think about Death.  It is important for me to think and talk about Death.  I wrote that in another blog.

I was at work when the planes hit the World Trade Center.  It was a beautiful, sunny day.  It still felt like summer.  I was 22 years old.  I wore a yellow tee-shirt, black knee-length skirt and black open toe platform shoes.  I rebelled with my clothing by this point in my career.  I did not look very formal on this day and I remember not caring, this put me in good mood.  I tried to get to work by 8:30 am.  I was few minutes late.   Few minutes after I got upstairs to the 10th floor, the first plane hit the World Trade Center on 9/11/2001.  We had a perfect view.  Anyone who was at work was lined up in front of the windows, staring at the smoking floor of the World Trade Center.  I could not look.  I sat down in my cubicle to call my mom but the phone rang, it was her.  It hit the news instantly and my mom was watching.  The people were gasping around me.  Oh my god this and that.  We all had little radios in our cubicles with two financial news stations..  They were all at full volume talking about the plane that hit the World Trade Center.  No one except for one guy was working.  That guy worked all the time, even on the day his baby was born.

I knew that there must be people in that building at that awful hour before 9 am.  I was pissed that people were forced to come to work before 9 am.  I imagined, they are probably young analysts and old bosses, who like me, did not want to go to work on that beautiful morning of 9/11/2001.  Like me, some of them must hate their jobs but they still woke up to march, or run, or rush, with coffee spilling in hand to their early and sudden deaths.  I don’t want to die at this job, was all I could think from that moment on.  I will not die in this job.

These were my thoughts before the other plane hit.  These were my thoughts before the whole thing collapsed.  The rest of the day was long.  The other plane hit while I sat in my cubicle thinking.  The people at the window saw that second impact.  Panic.  We evacuated down stairs, the elevators were instantly disabled.  I guess they thought we were under attack.  I knew I was not going to die that day.  I was observing the slow-moving chaos.  A few hours later we watched the building collapse from the street.  I did not want to look but I could not look away either.  Tragedy for thousands of people, slowly unfolding right in front of me for hours.  It was not moments.  It was hours of watching the horror from the safety of the street.  The thing about human nature that is miraculous is that in those moments our brains are too small to grasp what is going on.  Our small brain is advantageous.  If I did grasp the sadness of those moments, I would lay down on the street and weep for days.  Instead I walked on, I even had lunch with my coworkers.  The weeping came later.

We ended up in one of the analysts apartments, who lived close by.  He turned on the TV.  Even in this grim day, there was humor.  No one wanted to be on their own, they wanted to be with someone they knew.  Somehow a group of us formed as we ran out of our building.  The group contained few analysts, associates, a secretary and strangely the head of Mortgage Research group.  He was very senior and was not naturally seen hanging out in some small analyst apartment, where a roommate was waking up in a college tee-shirt and his boxers to watch the news with cereal in hand.  The funniest was the secretary.  She had the same voice as Fran on the Nanny.  I am being honest.  She was a little older than me and had a boyfriend who she desperately wanted to marry.  He would not propose.  Everyone was quietly watching TV with grim looks on their faces but the secretary kept calling her boyfriend and everyone she knew.  She was recounting the events of her day over and over on the phone with that voice.  She was telling her boyfriend that she loved him and asking him what he would do if something was to happen to her, with that voice.  I would probably not notice it if the head of Mortgage department was not in the room.  All of us noticed it, but we kept our grim faces.  The head of Mortgage department, the guys in his boxers, and all of us trying not to focus on her made the whole thing funny that even in the light of what was happening outside, I could not stop laughing in my head.

Death is the great equalizer.  In the presence of Death, the big head was stuck with the whining secretary, sharing her vulnerability.  We are all equal before death.  It does not matter what we accomplished.  The only one it matters to is us.  I know I will die but now I made sure I will not die doing that job, that’s all.

This is a grim post for my first day of college but I need this reminder wake up.  I want live the life I want to live while I am alive.

12:17 pm

lunch and recess.

9:52 pm edit.