I love Myself

I love myself

I love myself

I think I’m grand

I go to the movies

and I hold my hand.

I put my arm

around my waist

and when I’m fresh

I slap my face!

 

A little ditty my mother taught me that my grandmother taught her .

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This was an early blog post 4 years ago. The writing on my other blog, My Name is Jamie, My Life in Prison, could get mentally overpowering so I started this blog where I could lighten up or write about other things

One day my mother sang this song. I should record it. It’s cute. I laughed and laughed because I could my short grandmother,  a flapper in the roaring 20’s, aging this song. Oh how she loved to dance. She met each of her 3 husbands on the dance floor.

So I thought I would share it again today. (smile)

  

I Missed My Train…Now What Happens?

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Right now I’m sitting at the Amtrak station at Ft Lauderdale, FL. I love riding the train, up or down the coast every month. I should already be on the train, the 8:50 AM train heading up the coast, but my ride to the station got me here 5 minutes late and I watched the train pull away. I sighed.

I didn’t panic because I knew there was one more train today in three and a half hours. It’s also a longer ride by several hours, and a longer lay-over at Philadelphia 30th St station. (my favorite station on this route) I won’t get into Harrisburg until 10:05 Pm tomorrow night instead of shortly 12:45 PM.

I really wanted my morning a cup of coffee that I would have gotten at the Cafe car and there was no food or vending machine at this tiny station, unless I wanted to walk a few blocks. I didn’t want it that bad although the walk would have been beneficial. Oh well, I’ll live.

I decided instead to work on a chapter for my book I was in the middle of writing. Inside The Forbidden Outside, so I put the time to good use. My phone was dead so I plugged it into the ONLY electrical outlet in this quite huge room. Since everyone has a device that needs charging its a good thing I’m the only one sitting here. Mass transit and airports usually have charging availabilities.

A man walks in from the outside looking for an outlet. “Can I please charge my phone?” he asked, seeing my cord plugged into the only outlet. He had been at an establishment, I don’t remember where, and his wallet had been stolen. He called the police, not very confident of getting it back but it was all he could do. He had just gotten a phone call from the police. They caught the guy. He still had his wallet and everything was in it. He needed to come get it. . . then his phone battery died. He needed to call Uber, who already has a credit card on file, since his card was in his wallet. Of course I told him to unplug me. He made his call, thanked me and ran out the door. 

Next, a woman came in, waiting for Tri-rail, which services the communities in lower Florida. While she waited she really wanted to have a cup of coffee, but she didn’t want to drag her suitcase.

“I’m not going anywhere,” I told her. “I’m more than happy to watch your bag. I have two hours yet to wait.”

She was happy about that and pulled he bag over to me and set it beside me. As she headed to the door she turned and asked, “Can I get you anything?”

A smile lit up my face. “A cup of coffee?” I got out my wallet to give her a few dollars and she said, no, it was a fair trade for watching her bag.

I wasn’t going hold on to the money for that cup of coffee for very long. Soon after she left, a man came into the station, distraught. He also like he was in pretty bad shape. He paced the room and sat down down in the row of metal seats in front of me. (Very uncomfortable for long term sitting. Good thing I have a little pillow with me.)

“Can you help me, please,” he said. He was holding a single dollar bill in his hand along with a plastic card and a folded piece of paper.

I listened to his story. “I just got out of jail. I been there for sixty days. I was a trustee and they paid me a dollar a day to clean up in the medical ward. People’s pee and throw up and and everything else no one wanted to clean up.”

“They released me at 8:45 last night and they gave me this debit card and said my $60 was on it, but it won’t work. I called the number on it but the person said I’d have to call back. I just want to get home and I can’t.”

I asked him how much his Tri-rail ticket would cost.
$2.80. He was asking me for $1.80, about the price of a cup of coffee.

“You don’t know what is like in there,” he said real fast.

“People getting raped and stuck with knives. You don’t know what they made me do!” he said, looking like he was about to cry.

“I do know,” I said, and explained why I know and the book I’m writing. I also believed his story. He wasn’t trying to panhandle money just to get money. I don’t know why he was in jail and I didn’t care at this moment. Whether he was guilty or not of whatever he was charged wasn’t the issue, either. He needed help and I could help him. Someday I may need help, too. That is the Law of Cause and Effect.

“I had this public defender and he didn’t care one bit about what was happening to me,” he said like an afterthought.

I did know the issue inmates had about not actually being defended by those who legally were supposed to. Public defenders didn’t defend you. They worked for the district attorney. Even if they wanted to do their job there was no time to do it. There were too many cases to deal with as people were arrested, often to fill quotas. In and out. Fine then and make sure they have a date to return to court. Make it impossible for them to defend themselves. If they have enough fines they can’t pay, they can then be given prison time. Debtors prison. It’s a screwed up system.

The Tri-rail was slowly pulling into the station. I took out a five dollar bill and handed it to him. I could have given him two one dollar bills, but with the extra $3.20, when he got off the train he could get something eat.

There was a look of gratitude on his face as he turned toward the door. “You’re a good woman. A soldier for Christ,” he said and ran to his train.

I chuckled a little. I had no time to tell him I was a Buddhist. But there are concepts between Buddhism and Christianity that are pretty much the same. Christians say, “You reap what you sow.” Nichiren Buddhists call it “The law of Cause and Effect.”

Other people say, “What goes around comes around,” or “You get back what you dish out.” It’s all the same whether you do the right thing or the wrong thing. Our lives are the product of our actions and the causes we make.

There is a rhythm in life. We control that rhythm with our thoughts, words and actions. We can blame no one, even the supposed big man in the universe, for what happens in our lives. But it’s not just the big things that happen. If we look closely at the events in our daily life as it unfolds, we can see the way the pieces fit.

It will be interesting to see how this day plays out; why I missed my train and had to take the next one. There is a reason. Who will I meet? What did I avoid? How do I affect someone else’s life, because I will, in some way. How does it affect my husband’s life having to drive to Harrisburg at 10:00 pm instead of 12:45 pm? 

Life is so damn interesting if you slow down and pay attention to the details.

HAPPY New Year? Really?

Happy New Years – I think. I mean, that is what we’re supposed to say, isn’t it? We say it every year, until the illusion passes and we go back to work and the kids go back to school, broken toys in the corner of their room.

Federal workers are returning gifts for the money because landlords still expect rent money, and Trump is lying and said the workers are happy to have their life (and their own personal happy new year sacrificed) because they want him to build his ego – centered big beautiful wall so he can brag about being the best goddam president the United States has ever had. He is going to make the American people pay for that wall if it’s the last thing he does (and hopefully cashes in his chips – at his own bankrupted and closed casino in Atlantic City.) 

But personally, what do we actually do different that makes it possible to have a good and happy year? For most people, probably nothing  They are tired, trying to survive so the don’t pay attention to it. 

I saw not ONE personal new years resolution this year, because they really are a joke. What I DID see was ( too many to count in my head) sparkling posters on Facebook messenger flashing HAPPY NEW YEAR in big multi – color letters; an impersonal and meaningless way to say you care – to someone you don’t care about and have never met. 

So what is it that we (as a country and personally) are going to do differently this year that will make this a happy year? We pretend everything will get fixed by somebody, and say the same thing every year. Then we forget about it for 12 months and do it again.

I’m being cynical – intentionally – The polical climate in the US of A is so bad that it’s citizens hate each other, and that hate is CAUSED by corrupt politicians who are fighting over how much more they are going to screw us and the country in this new year – AND WE ARE SUPPOSED TO BE HAPPY? And yet we put on a hat, watch a ball in NYC drop down again, party a little, wake up and go about how we are going to survive the year and fruitless I Oops a little security for ourselves as debt climbs.

Yeah, happy new year.

The End Game – Poetry

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photo source: hepfi.org

The End Game

Lurking in back of my eyes
Tasting the smells, seeing the ghosts
No matter how often I’ve tried
It reminds me where I’ve been
And how many miles I’ve gone
I tied it up in a garbage bag
And kept on walking alone

Too late, it caught up beside me
And said hi, where have you been?
It’s time to pay the price dear
You can’t run away from sin
You made a cause, the effect is now
There’s no choice, you can’t get away
You chose to play, it’s time to pay
It’s your end game, take a bow

 

by Sonni Quick ©2018

Post liver transplant /cancer survivor/2012

Also follow:  My Name is Jamie. Life in Prison

You’ve got to love yourself — Cristian Mihai

“Your opinion of yourself becomes your reality. If you have all these doubts, then no one will believe in you, and everything will go wrong. If you think the opposite, the opposite will happen. It’s that simple. The higher your self-belief, the more your power to transform reality. Having supreme confidence makes you fearless and […]

via You’ve got to love yourself — Cristian Mihai

This is how I live my life and how I keep going. I tell myself – and others – you are what you think. You accomplish what you believe you will accomplish it. Don’t doubt. Be patient. The road will open for you. But if you don’t think you can do it, whatever it is, you will surely not.

Appreciate Your Journey

This morning I received this poster from William, a man I am connected to on Messenger. About once aweek or so we exchange something – usually of a positive nature or something about society that needs to change. Today I decided to post our exchange because it is something I feel strongly about.

Think about the words on this poster. What do they mean to you? It’s not about just appreciating your life, but how it causes you to do something about the next step in your life. Life is a journey. It never stays stagnant. How do you get to the next step of where you are going – and what is the purpose? Where are you going? Do you just let life slap you around? Do you understand it is the causes you make that produce the effects in your life and YOU are responsible for that? It would be great if you could blame something or someone else for the bad shit, but you can’t. And it is what you learn through dealing with it that gets you to the next step – if your eyes are open wide enough to see it. Below is my response:

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Many people do not have enough appreciation for their lives. They take it for granted and waste the time they have to explore their own potential. There is no hunger to see what they are capable of, settling for security – if they have it – and going no farther, often stepping on other people to acquire it. The human race is so incredible and many who belong to it are such a disappointment. If we could have but a glimpse inside their psychological thinking to see how they justify to themselves the evil they do. Do they know it? Does it affect them? I’ve been on a rant the last couple days – more than usual, if that is possible.

But in the end – of our own lives – the only legacy we can leave behind that has true value is the effect we had on other lives, and did that effect make a positive difference in their lives. Many people want to be remembered in some way but being remembered Isn’t enough. It is the causes and effects of who you are that matters.

Thanks for your message today. You caught me in a philosophical frame of mind. 😒You have a great day, too.

Do You Live For Yourself – Or Others?

Do You Live For Yourself – Or Others?

 

Did you grow up in your hometown, marry young, buy a house close by and stay there for the rest of your life; or did you spread your wings and fly off, finding new places and new friends, living places you chose to move to as the opportunity presented itself and saw life as an adventure? Is one way better than the other? Look at yourself now. Did you do the right thing? Would you admit it to yourself if you didn’t? Would you go back and do something different?

I’m in my mid 60’s. I enjoy my age. I think I’ve acquired a bit more wisdom, and a heck of a lot of determination to finish life pleased with how I lived it. I climbed the mountains and survived – so far. As I look back on my life, each decade I went through was in a different place as well as a different way to survive, staying away from the conventional paycheck and instead relying on my ingenuity.

I know clearly where I was at each development of wisdom. Why me? What made me want to experience newness while the rest of my family felt comfort and security was more important because everything stayed the same? Someone I grew up with once told me she wished nothing would ever change. She’d stay in her house. She said she didn’t need any friends, they were too much bother. Was that her idea of happiness? Looking at her life now what effect did that have on our relationship? Not a good one.

What makes one person want to experience the newness that comes along in life? We have a choice to grab onto it or ignore it. Do we take the chance to make new friends or change careers, or perhaps begin a new hobby, and another person in the same family chooses the safety of only what is familiar, the comfort of routine and the predictability of sameness. Work the same job for decades even though they hated it? For the paycheck? It is worth giving up the possibly of finding a creative part of yourself just to stay in your predictable comfort zone?

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It takes all kinds of people to make the world go ’round. There isn’t one perfect way that is good for everyone. I chose long ago to not live with fear of the unknown. Any day could be my last – your last. I would rather leave this life with a smile on my face with the possibility of a new adventure on the horizon. When do you stop living with anticipation? “What if I went there and learned how to do that?”

The real definition of failure lies in never trying; crawling into your routine until you can finally justify your actions by saying, “I’m too old.”

Long ago I developed a mantra and have told it to many people along the way who also have had people in their own lives who had opinions about how they should live their life, even though it wasn’t theirs to judge. “If you don’t like what I’m doing, don’t watch me do it.” I don’t care what other people think about my life, especially when they don’t want to be part of it.

I’ve never owned a home, nor have I wanted to. I want to be able to leave when I’m ready, and I don’t want to have to repair the roof or other maintenance.

I want to be able to choose how I spend my day. Will I ever “grow up?” I seriously hope not. Life should be enjoyed. If you take care of yourself you have a better chance of not letting age bring you down where all you have to talk about with your friends are your medical problems. I will go out with a fight.

Every day you wake up is a day you can fill to the top with things of value. You are what you think. You attract people in your life who appreciate who you are.  If they don’t appreciate you get rid of them. They aren’t worth the trouble. The people I grew up with became people I couldn’t be around any more. Or rather, they couldn’t be around me. My mother told me more than once, “You scare them.” Inner strength and confidence makes some people uncomfortable. So I was kicked out of family get-togethers because maybe I’ll say something outside of the platitudes of talking about jobs and weather. I also hate gossiping about the perceived misfortunes of others.

Everyone has a choice about how they are going to live their lives. Some are waiting to die hoping for happiness later. I choose to be happy now – or die trying!

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