April 4, 2020 at 12:55 pm #347102
Dear Janus, Earth Angel and Poet:
I am glad you planted some flowers in the garden and soaked in the sunlight. It is sunny here too, but very cloudy as well, a combination of sun and lots of grey clouds.
I never really though about what the different colors of the sunlight and the moon, at different times and location, mean. Thank you for the review.
“Science is fascinating and there’s always something interesting to learn”- this has been true to you for the nearly 4.5 years of our communication; you’ve been fascinated with science and learning for a long, long time!
anitaApril 6, 2020 at 12:03 pm #347968
I hope that you are staying healthy with the coronavirus pandemic spreading around. It is the beginning of a new week and I am glad. I went out for a light jog this morning and watched the sunrise which was beautiful. The pink, orange and yellow streaks across the sky as the sun rose to greet the world with the light of positivity made me grateful to be alive. Also it’s quieter in the mornings so I enjoyed the light jog, watching the birds flying around in the trees. I have been practicing social distancing from people and am doing well. I plan to prepare for the fall 2020 semester because registration opens April 14th for classes. I am hoping to take a stress and anxiety class which I think will be fun and some health science classes. I also created a destress music list of my favorite meditations and music songs into a playlist saved on my YouTube account so I can listen when I feel stressed and feel more relaxed. I am thinking of doing some more spring cleaning around the house and organizing my books so that I know where my notes are and so that I can refer to any notes that I might need to for my classes when the new semester starts.April 6, 2020 at 12:15 pm #347974
Dear Janus, Earth Angel and Poet:
Your light jog this morning looks (in my mind’s eye) beautiful, with the sunrise colors across the sky. It seems to me, from reading your recent posts, that every since you are staying home, ever since the lockdown, your anxiety has lessened, and you feel calmer. Am I correct? (If I am correct, there is something to learn from this)
anitaApril 8, 2020 at 1:58 am #348230
There is a thunderstorm this morning and listening to the rain is relaxing, I love watching the lightning light up the sky, the static in the air fills me with energy and the loud thunder is like a drum that releases the tension in my mind as I listen to its rumble, nature’s music is the best to relax and enjoy the little things in life. The quarantine makes things quieter and I find that it helps me de-stress with less people around making me feel less self-conscious. I still have anxiety since I’m around my parents who tend to yell at me every now and then and sometimes don’t really provide much emotional support when I feel sad. But I feel lots better because I’m taking the time to meditate, listen to nature, get healthy exercise and do some spring cleaning. I find myself getting up early in the mornings when it is quiet to meditate or journal and it helps me de-stress throughout the day. I hope to lower my anxiety more so it’s not overwhelming before the fall 2020 semester starts. I think that I will always have some anxiety being around my parents and not being accepted for who I am, but I think that as I work on my spiritual self, I might be able to manage the anxiety better. Although I miss going to LGBTQ events because of the quarantine, I find it helpful to talk with the LGBTQ community online and since I enjoy writing to people (I tend to write better than speaking in person), I find myself building connections in the LGBTQ community and I feel better about myself knowing that there are people who struggle and we help uplift each other. I love the LGBTQ community with all my heart because they have helped me find a sense of self and provide me with hope during the stressful times. I love the blog on tinybuddha.com as well because I find journaling my thoughts and reading over past posts helps me understand how far I’ve come and to remind myself of things when I feel lost in myself. The quarantine may be the time for me to work on myself and understand what career path to go for because I love the sciences and helping people and I was thinking of helping the LGBTQ community, it would be great to study health sciences and neuroscience to help the LGBTQ community with mental health resources and promote better health care for people. Although I’m not sure what career exactly that I want I know that I love being a creative scientist helping out the LGBTQ community and know for certain that I want to transition to feel more comfortable with myself.April 8, 2020 at 7:58 am #348264
What you shared in your recent post teaches me that:
1. You feel more comfortable to not be around people than to be around people (because your inner critic doesn’t have people to project itself into, so you don’t worry about what this and that person is thinking about how you look, sound, etc.), so in this regard the quarantine works for you.
2. You communicate with people more easily online than in person, through typing away, vs talking. In this regard too, the quarantine is working for you.
3. You have more time to do what you need to do: to meditate, listen to nature, exercise, etc. during the quarantine than you had before, so in this regard too, the quarantine is working for you.
What I figure regarding your future career path is that what you do for a living needs to be done mostly in the context of you being alone, typing away in a computer, and doing tasks otherwise that do not involve interacting with other people in-person. Some interactions in-person, if necessary, will need to be limited in time, so that you don’t get overwhelmed.
I am glad you find comfort and help in your communications online with the LGBTQ community as well as here, on your thread. Do take advantage of the quarantine for as long as it lasts!
anitaApril 8, 2020 at 7:40 pm #348340
Thank you so much for your insightful advice. I find that the quarantine is great because it helps me de-stress and I love being out in nature. The thunderstorm cleared in the afternoon and left cloudy skies with cumulus clouds, slight breeze and a few rays of sunshine. So I was outside picking some small pebbles for my indoor flower pots and there was a bird sitting on the fence watching me. I decided to talk with the bird and ask him if those rocks that I was picking were good to use to line the indoor flower pots and the bird turned its head and chirped at me. It made me smile. Each time I grabbed some small pebbles and asked the bird whether those pebbles would work the bird would turn its head towards me and chirp and I found myself laughing. I told the bird that I would show them the flowers when they started growing and the bird chirped and I went inside to grab a flower plant and the bird was sitting on the fence as if waiting to see the flowers. I showed the bird the flower buds and told the bird that the flowers were just starting to bloom and that I would show the bird again when they bloomed completely. The bird turned its head and I think that the bird looked at the new flower sprouts and chirped. I brought the flower plant back inside and I went back out and I told the bird thank you for brightening my day and the bird chirped and then after a while flew into the nearby trees. I love birds and Animals are amazing and very insightful when you talk to them, they always seem to brighten your days.
Also my mint plant on my windowsill has been growing well and here’s some positivity I learned from watching the plant grow. Nature is a true inspiration.
After some days of sunlight, the mint plant’s leaves are starting to become more vibrant green and the plant is shooting up towards the sun’s rays. Before there wasn’t much sunlight and the mint plant’s leaves were a dark green and it was spread out more horizontally so that the sun’s rays would fall directly into the center of the plant and the plant could soak up the small amount of sunlight that it could. Now that these days there has been more sunlight, the mint plant is growing taller and has vertical growth. It’s so cool how nature seems to be so inspirational. People are like plants, they need to keep hope that the sunlight will shine bright again even if the days seem gray, and like the mint plant when there’s little sunlight breaking through the clouds, people may feel less tall and slower progress but they should know that brighter days are ahead because the mint plant decided to keep hope for brighter days and now these days there has been more sunlight so the mint plant can grow tall, so people should also be hopeful that brighter days are ahead even when clouds limit the sunshine because although progress may be slow at times, keeping hope there will be positivity to help you grow tall. Hope this was inspirational.
April 9, 2020 at 6:04 am #348384
- This reply was modified 7 months, 3 weeks ago by Janus.
(I forgot to add the usual Earth Angel and Poet to my last post to you, but now, looking at “Dear Janus” by itself, it looks better to me, so I will continue with it).
You are welcome. The interaction you described with the bird, it was so pleasant for you because you weren’t afraid of what the bird was thinking about you, a bird being incapable of thinking negative things about you, judging you, looking down at you, none of these things, so you are not self conscious with the bird, not worrying, you are free to just be.
“I love birds and Animals are amazing .. they always seem to brighten your days”- a day without the inner critic is a bright day. The inner critic knows it can’t fool you by telling you that a bird, or a dog is thinking negatively about you, having the words to form such thoughts, so it stays quiet.
Enjoy this break from the inner critic, treasure this time, so when the pandemic is over, you will take this time with you and aim at having more of it, even around people.
Your mint plants analogy is brilliant- spreading out horizontally when there is little sun (isolating during a pandemic), and growing tall upward when the sun comes out (socializing again when the viral danger is gone).
But socializing is not delightful for everyone, because so many of us worry about what other people think of us, and that worry ruins the delight of socializing with other people.
It’s been sunny here too, where I am, the sky is beautiful here, at 6:04 am, some kind of blue, not long after the start of sunrise.
April 9, 2020 at 7:00 pm #348514
- This reply was modified 7 months, 3 weeks ago by anita.
Hope you enjoy the nice weather. Thunderstorms started at 2:17 pm today and they lasted until 2:41 pm and then it was cloudy for a while before the sun came out around 4pm. There was a slight breeze and it was great to feel the breeze and look at the cumulus clouds in the sky. The birds came out and it was fun watching them around the yard searching for food. I love the wind (as long as the weather is not cold) and the thunderstorms. It makes me feel cozy to just sit inside watching the rain, and looking at the trees dancing in the wind. Nature is an inspiration because it reminds people that even though that life may bring storms that it’s okay to cry (rain of tears) and know that sunny skies are ahead again. The rain helps cleanse away the negativity and the wind blowing is like working on building your strength again to get through the struggle. And when the skies are dark and lightning races across the sky, it reminds me that there is still a strong light in a person no matter how dark life gets. So I see the storms as inspiration. I hope that I can enjoy the time being out in nature, exercising and just being creative and gain a good relaxation from my anxiety that lasts into when the quarantine is over. I still have some anxiety, but spending time in nature and social distancing has helped me lessen it a bit because I’m not as self-conscious about myself.April 9, 2020 at 7:18 pm #348516
Your imagination and imagery were always rich and plentiful, especially about nature.
I don’t think it’s accurate to say that we are quarantined, because a quarantine is “a state of enforced isolation” and our isolation is not enforced.
“social distancing has helped me lessen (anxiety) a bit because I’m not as self-conscious about myself”- imagine lessening your self consciousness after the pandemic, when socializing with people, at the university and elsewhere. There has to be a way for you to do that: to be around people, and be more and more okay with whatever it is that they are thinking about you or of you, (if they do think about you at all!)
anitaApril 11, 2020 at 8:22 pm #348914
I have been meditating a lot currently and it helps me de-stress as well as improve my concentration. I still struggle with anxiety that sometimes clouds my thoughts and I sometimes find myself remembering only bits of a memory and working on finding it because my mind is lost in anxiety. Sometimes I feel like the anxiety is making me feel detached from myself like I am aware of the world, but not really there in myself. Like I’m just an energy being flowing around and looking at nature who experiences anxiety and I’m not really there in my body. Since my body gives me dysphoria I find that I don’t really connect with it much, there are times when I find myself checking in on myself and I find things that I like about my body like my toned arms and that gives me a sense of self rather than just feeling like an energy being that is just floating away. I find that people who have loud voices are the ones that startle me the most because my voice is quieter and I feel like louder voices just make me anxious because they remind me of my parents yelling sometimes. I like people who have moderate voices who aren’t too loud or don’t introduce themselves in a loud way because it makes me jumpy.April 11, 2020 at 8:34 pm #348916
It was 11:22 pm your time, when you submitted the above. What is your bedtime? Mine is way earlier than yours (I am three hours earlier than you). You are mass and energy, both, so you need to make peace with your body. Because you like your arms, when you do go to bed, put your hands over your arms, sort of hugging yourself, feel the contact between your hands and your arms, feel the warmth of your arms. Take slow breaths, and repeat to yourself: I am at peace with my body.
I hope to read from you after you do this simple exercise.
Good night, Janus, Earth Angel, Poet, and .. Human body.
anitaApril 12, 2020 at 7:34 pm #349080
I tend to go to bed at around 1am at times because I sometimes spend time talking with LGBTQ friends who like to stay up late. But on most days I go to bed around 11 pm. I have been meditating a bit on healing my body and lessening the anxiety and I find that meditation helps me increase my mental focus. I am thinking of learning yoga poses or dance poses for fun and as a good way to exercise and release tension in my body. I like your idea of hugging myself using my arms because I have been doing that currently before falling asleep and I find it helpful. My parents restaurant has been quite busy lately because other restaurants have been closing due to coronavirus and there are lots of orders each day. The orders often start from 1pm- 7:30pm and there’s not much of a break between them. That is why I tend to make sure that everything is stocked up with all the supplies so that when the orders come in there is still supplies there to use. Because of coronavirus, my parents restaurant has been opening six days a week from 11 am- 9pm and on Mondays from 4pm-9pm. The normal hours used to be 10 pm for closing time, but currently the coronavirus curfew from the Governor Phil Murphy says that all businesses should close down by 9pm at the latest so the restaurant is also observing that. Since the restaurant is open every day including holidays, it has been quite busy currently from 1pm-7:30pm because a lot of the people have been coming to the restaurant after finding that ours is the only one that is nearby that is open. The stores in Lakewood, NJ which has the most cases of coronavirus are mostly closed but there are still some places in Brick, NJ that are still open. My parents never close the restaurant because they feel afraid that if they close for even a day, they will lose customers and money. Sometimes during the really busy hours of the restaurant usually from 4pm-6pm, there isn’t really much time for anything but just to take orders and stock up on supplies. Since there is a lot of running around the kitchen during that time, I tend to drink a lot of water to stay hydrated. But there’s usually not enough time to eat anything or go to the bathroom because the customers keep coming in. I sometimes wonder if it would be better if my parents hired other people to help out with the restaurant, but they don’t want to because they think that hiring people is a process and having to pay them is tough when they are working on keeping enough income to pay things. Also during the times that are quite busy, my mom gets quite angry at times when an order gets wrong and she yells at my dad which is sad. My mom tends to yell a lot when she gets mad and she often gets irritated about the little things. She can’t stand it when other people make mistakes or when others criticize her for things because then she’ll yell and complain for hours. Like if someone accidentally forgets to put the sauce in the box, she will yell at them saying “I can’t believe you forgot that. One thing wrong messes everything up! Why can’t you get things right?! I hate you when that happens!” And sometimes it goes on for hours. Also when someone else criticizes her, she will talk about them a lot and complain “That person is a really mean and rude person. I’ve never met anyone like that.” And she’ll go on for a day and sometimes for another and sometimes she brings up past events as well and complains about them. She tends to compound things to the extreme at times I feel like.
Like when I decided to take time off to talk with the counselors at college for my mental health, she said “Well this happened before when you had to take time off at community college. When are you going to grow up and face your problems because it’s going to be the same loop again and you keep choosing to be this way?!” Or she’ll say “You can’t be that way because that makes you too different from society and you’ll only be a disappointment, how can you expect yourself to do well if you are like this?”
My parents aren’t really good at handling their emotions, my mom often yells while my dad just ignores the situation. When I tell my dad about mental health things, he doesn’t really listen and just tells me that there are other people in the world who are worse off and it’s like he isn’t even acknowledging that I have anxiety and I struggle with gender dysphoria like I’m not really being heard by him. That is why I am grateful to the LGBTQ community and the tinybuddha.com blog where I can talk about my feelings and work on healing.April 12, 2020 at 8:18 pm #349084
I will read and reply to you when I am back to the computer tomorrow morning (it is almost my bed time now!)
anitaApril 16, 2020 at 2:22 am #349808
Hope things are going well for you.
May your day be filled with love and laughter, wishing you a great day of peace and clarity to enjoy the moments of life. Blessings to you my friend, sending loving-kindness your way to remind you that you are a special soul and to take care of yourself todayApril 16, 2020 at 7:51 am #349844
Thank you. I wish you to have the same kind of day you are wishing me!