Friday, December 30, 2011

In which the universe attempts to teach me patience

The other day I was at waiting in line at Wegmans for the world's slowest cashier to ring up the person ahead of me. I started to get annoyed but then I thought "be patient, you have plenty of time" and I relaxed. Eventually it was my turn, I paid for my items and walked out to my car, arriving just as the radio started playing Sorrow by The National, which I love.

I guess sometimes things that seem to be obstacles are life's way of slowing you down so you get to the right place at the right time.

Or maybe that's just wishful thinking on my part.

Lyric of the moment: "Don't leave my hyper heart alone on the water. Cover me in rag and bones, sympathy. 'Cause I don't wanna get over you..."

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

A little less conversation, a little more action

I don't know if it's a resolution per se, but I've decided my motto for 2012 will be don't think, just do. All the best things happen when I don't overthink them, when I say yes before I have a chance to talk myself out of anything.

That's how I found myself running trails at Mendon Ponds yesterday morning. I got invited to a 10 mile trail run with some Fleet Feet regulars and instead of thinking about how I'm not much of a trail runner and I've never run 10 miles on trails before, I simply said "Yes, if it's ok with everyone else, I'd love to!" And it was muddy and fun and a beautiful morning for gallivanting through the woods. I really need to run more trails. And do more gallivanting in general.

So my plan for 2012 is not to worry, overanalyze or be afraid of failure/embarrassment and instead say yes, jump in and make the best of whatever fortune or fiasco I encounter. Whatever happens, at least it will be interesting.

Lyric of the moment: "As soon as you're born you start dying so you might as well have a good time..."

Sunday, December 25, 2011

Soundtrack for new adventures

Yesterday I made the mistake of watching Friends With Benefits. It's just the kind of romantic comedy crap that I love. And the female lead was a headhunter! (I wish our candidates looked like Justin Timberlake!) But real life isn't like the movies, all grand gestures and perfect monologues. And maybe I don't really want it to be. I don't want unnecessary drama and things that are stupidly complicated because people can't admit how they really feel and what they really want.

I went to bed sad last night, but I woke up happy. I ran up Cobb's Hill to watch the sunrise on one side and the city skyline on the other. I sat cross-legged at the top and took a few deep breaths. It's ok to be alone. It's ok to need people. It's ok to feel multiple emotions all at once and make mistakes and be vulnerable.

It's time for new adventures. My only plan is to laugh at everything, love everyone and keep going.

I don't know where it will lead, but I hope it sounds like this...
Soundtrack for new adventures:

*Shake It Out by Florence and the Machine
*Long May You Run by Neil Young
*Clark Gable by The Postal Service
*Black and Yellow by Wiz Khalifa
*Fly by Nicki Minaj
*We Are Young by Fun
*Sweet Disposition by The Temper Trap

Lyric of the moment: "The thrill of hope, the weary world rejoices, for yonder breaks a new and glorious morn..." (People should say yonder more often.)

Saturday, December 24, 2011

The night before Christmas

Truth be told I'm finding it hard to muster any kind of excitement for Christmas and New Year's this year. It is what it is I suppose. I want to believe in magic and miracles and movie screen moments, but they seem to be in short supply lately. To whoever is in charge of these things, please send more awesomeness. And hugs. Love always, Robot.

Lyric of the moment: "I want so badly to believe that there is truth, that love is real. And I want life in every word to the extent that it's absurd..."

Thursday, December 22, 2011


The hole is gone, the underlying problems seem to be fixed and things are back to good. There's still some touch up painting and cleaning to be done, but everything appears to be copasetic. It drove me crazy at the time, but once again, some temporary messiness has lead to vast improvements.

A man named John Burroughs said "Leap and the net will appear." I don't know if the net part is true, but the free fall is totally worth the risk of a potentially calamitous landing. Free fall is one of the best places I've ever been, second only to the inside of an awesomely good hug.

So here I am again, at the edge of who knows what. I have no idea what the next weeks, months and years will bring, but I'm going to do my best to accept all challenges, invitations and adventures with open arms, open mind and open heart.

For some reason I feel strangely optimistic, like anything could happen. Not that it necessarily will, but that it could.

Lyric of the moment: "And I am flawed, but I am cleaning up so well. I am seeing in me now the things you swore you saw yourself..."

Monday, December 19, 2011

The art of not wanting. And other things I have yet to master

When people ask what I want for Christmas, I never know what to say. (I'd like to say more hugs, but that's an awkward gift.) Most of the things I want aren't things. And I try not to want too much in general, because it leads to unhappiness. I said try because I often fail at this. I want certain things to be different, I want to be different in certain ways. And maybe someday some of those things will be different, and I might be different at some point, though probably not in the ways that I'm hoping. But I can't control a lot of that. And there's no use worrying about things I can't control.

So this is where I am at this point in time and space. Sometimes I want to be somewhere else (like on a beach, looking like a supermodel and drinking a delicious smoothie with Ryan Reynolds). But if I really think about it, that's not where I want to be at all (sorry, Ryan). I want to be in the house that was once home to 4 people and one dog that I loved (and hopefully will someday be home to more people I will love), in the life that I built for myself that is crazy and funny and random and changing every day. I don't actually want to be anyone other than me, with my stupid heart and its ridiculous decisions and my stupid brain and its incessant nonsense. I have to admit I do sort of love my motley crew of parts. Sometimes. It's a start.

Wherever I am, it's because I need to be here for some reason. So I have to make the best of this moment and learn from all the teachers life is sending to me now. Wanting can be a useful feeling, to point me in the right direction if I'm lost. But if I spend too much time wanting things to be different, I'll miss out on what is good about how things actually are. Looking back, there were so many moments - a phone call, an e-mail, a slap, a word - that would change my life completely, only I didn't know it at the time. It seems logical to conclude that it could happen again. Everything in time, I suppose. And I do have time. Enough of it that I don't have to rush to fit everything in, but not so much of it that I can take it for granted.

There are two things that I do want for Christmas. They're the same things I want everyday. Good company and good times. And actually it's the good company that really matters. Because even the bad times aren't so bad if you have the right companions.

Lyric of the moment: "You pull back the curtains, and the sun burns into your eyes. You watch a plane flying across a clear blue sky. This is the day your life will surely change..."

Sunday, December 18, 2011

Why I love everyone

Today before leaving the house, I rubbed the Buddha statue's belly and wished for a sign. Later I got a text message that said "Open up and enjoy new people and experiences! Remember 'You have brains in your head, you have feet in your shoes, you can steer yourself any direction you choose,'" someone nice took me to see the new Sherlock Holmes movie, during which someone else left a note on my car that said "Here's to many more marathons! Keep it up," then I returned home to an e-mail that said "As far as I'm concerned, nothing about you is robotic; not even close--your soul is too big for such a small definition."

And days like today are why I love life and everyone in it.

This is the year I learned what happens when an unstoppable force meets an immovable object. Affection and hilarity and craziness and calamity. You can temporarily deter it or momentarily restrict it but you can't hold back an unstoppable force for long.

Lyric of the moment: "I'm a boomerang, doesn't matter how you throw me, turn around and I'm back in the game, even better than the old me. But I'm not even close without you..."

Thursday, December 15, 2011


I love this post, especially the following parts:

"Life is too short to spend time with people who suck the happiness out of you. If someone wants you in their life, they’ll make room for you. You shouldn’t have to fight for a spot. Never, ever insist yourself to someone who continuously overlooks your worth. And remember, it’s not the people that stand by your side when you’re at your best, but the ones who stand beside you when you’re at your worst that are your true friends."


"If something is meant to be, it will happen – in the right time, with the right person, and for the best reason."

Somehow the right words always find me at the right time. I need reminders to slow down, relax, enjoy these moments instead of rushing off to the next. There are so many things I want to do, but I can't worry about them all at once. I will do what I can with the time that I have.

I feel a little stuck because I don't want to spend my time waiting around for someone or something to happen. But I don't want to do everything alone. Half the fun of any adventure is sharing it with someone.

I find things to do to keep myself busy, but then I go home alone to my house where everything is quiet and perfectly in order. Which is how I like it. Except that I hate it. The stove is clean, but it's because no one uses it. The bed is made, but only because there's no one still in it when I get up. I miss the chaos of other people.

There is a lesson in here somewhere. I need to remember how this feels so that the next time I live with someone I don't take it for granted. Like when you first wake up next to someone and think "wow, I'm so lucky" but then over time it becomes "ugh, he's snoring again." I want to wake up happy and energized and grateful for every day. This may require some kind of "today is going to be awesome" dance. Or pillow chocolate, like in fancy hotels.

I don't think I want a conventional life, but it can be lonely when most people seem to be headed one way and I'm off floating in the wind somewhere else.

Lyric of the moment: "If there was a better way to go then it would find me. I can't help it, the road just rolls out behind me. Be kind to me, or treat me mean. I'll make the most of it, I'm an extraordinary machine..." (because I really hope it's true)

Sunday, December 11, 2011

Fantastically, ridiculously, deliciously good things

I went to acupuncture last week to try and unblock my Chi or whatever it is that acupuncture does so that I could get rid of this cold and feel better in general. And because sometimes it's nice to sit in a tranquil room with soothing music and just relax for 45 minutes. Somehow my brain got the idea to imagine breathing in happiness and positivity and breathing out sadness and negativity, so I tried to focus on that for a while. It lasted about 1.27 minutes before I got distracted by 87 other thoughts, but hey I'll take it. I think my cold is finally going away (fingers crossed, and anything else I can cross for good luck).

I decided I'm going to focus on all the good things and happy moments of my days and try to let go of everything else. Life, I always say that you are awesome and have a way of working out for the best, so here's your chance to prove me right...

Some things that were awesome about the past few days:

Thursday, December 8th
*6am run with Shooter
*Getting a sweet Christmas bonus at work
*Pumpkin spiced chai
*Someone asked me what my song of the moment was and I said I wanted it to be Drive by Incubus, then later I was driving and that song randomly played on the radio.
*The plumber and the contractor hatched an ingenious plan that will fix the pipes and solve my house's problems
*Horoscope says "You have to be true to you if you want to find happiness and peace of mind."
*Shopping adventures with Meghan and Kelly
*Dinner at Monte Albans with my parents

Friday, December 9th
*Had a dream that I lived in (or at least was staying in, I'm a little hazy on the details) a super fancy hotel with a giant comfy bed
*I read this article which I thought made some interesting points and articulates a lot of the conflicting feelings I often have
*Getting out of work early
*Hot yoga
*Tasty dinner from Half Moon Salads
*Animal crackers. The camels and elephants are my favorite

Saturday, December 10th
*12 mile run on the golf course with Eric and Joe
*Almost finishing my Christmas shopping
*Catching up on my stories (i.e. the shows I DVRed during the week)
*Dinner and a pay-per-view movie

Sunday, December 11th
*Good workout at the gym (bonus points for treadmills with their own built-in TV's)
*Breakfast with Meghan, Becky & Kelly
*Vanilla chai at Starry Nights
*Making/taste testing Christmas cookies with Mom
*Psych (such a funny show)

Lyric of the moment: "Whatever tomorrow brings, I'll be there with open arms and open eyes, yeah. Whatever tomorrow brings, I'll be there..." (Though I really hope that tomorrow brings hugs and cookies. And people who want to cuddle up on the couch on cold nights to watch good TV and eat snacks.)

Friday, December 9, 2011


Tonight I went to my first hot yoga class at Bikram Yoga. It's 90 minutes of stretching and sweating in a 105 degree room. Even I thought it was hot and I'm perpetually cold. I want to hibernate in that room all winter long. I'm not very flexible but I was surprised to find I could do most of the poses without falling over. I thought I would be self-conscious in front of a class full of people, but yoga has this way of forcing you to focus only on the current pose and to stay in the moment. The instructor was talking so fast about little baby fingers here  (yeah I have no idea why he kept saying the thing about little fingers) and reach there and put your left leg in and your right leg out that I didn't have time to think of anything at all. It was amazing. At times I felt a little light headed and I was dripping with sweat, but afterwards I felt loose and strong and the good kind of exhausted that comes from letting everything go.

I didn't run today so my streak is officially over. But this was exactly what I needed. A challenging yet relaxing workout, a brief respite from thoughts and worries, and a way to release and unwind.

Lyric of the moment: "And all I feel is black and white and I'm wound up small and tight and I don't know who I am..."

Thursday, December 8, 2011

Slow but perpetual forward motion

I came across this quote today: “Those who truly love us will never knowingly ask us to be other than we are.”

I thought it was nice. Of course people who love you should want you to be your authentic self. But I want have people in my life who love me for who I am and still encourage/inspire me to be better than I am.

I feel like this year has been two steps forward, one step back. But at least it's still forward progress I suppose. My first marathon was less than stellar, but the second one was much improved. I'm hoping that my next marathon will be even better. And that this upward trend will also occur in other areas of my life.

So far my running streak has lasted 38 days. I don't know if I should keep going or not. The momentum is nice but I can feel myself starting to get tired. I've been trying to distract myself by keeping busy. Acupuncture, group runs, going out with friends and watching funny shows and movies (The Muppet Movie was so cute and just the kind of funny I needed. But I totally want an 80's robot now!) My boss got me a free one month pass to the Midtown Athletic Club. Both of my bosses have been pushing me to join there for a while, but I don't know. It's such a fancy place, like for really fancy people who live in mansions, not for robots who live in small houses. I don't see how I could ever fit in there, but I guess I have a month to figure it out.

Lyric of the moment: "And we may never meet again, so shed your skin and let's get started. And you will throw your arms around me..." (Because I want to sell my house and move into this song. The cover version by Pearl Jam.)

Monday, December 5, 2011

Impossible and ridiculous things

I always wished this said "Why, sometimes I've done as
many as six impossible things before breakfast."
I always wanted to go to the airport/bus stop/train station and just hop on a plane/bus/train to a random destination and see what happened. But I've never done it. The free spirit in me thinks that this would be a fantastic and hilarious adventure, but the practical part of me points out that I have no one to go with and it would be expensive and, knowing me, I would get lost. I seem to have these competing desires for spontaneity and security. I don't know if there is a way to have both. I want a life of change and surprises, of late nights and long conversations, but I also want a life of paying off my mortgage and retiring early, of getting a good night's sleep and getting up before dawn to run.

As they say, you can't sleep in and also watch the sunrise. Actually, I don't think anyone says this. I just made it up. But after saying it I think, well technically you could do both if you had a really sweet view out of your bedroom window, and if you timed it just right, you could wake up long enough to sit up in bed, watch the sun rise, and then fall back asleep. Except that I wouldn't fall back asleep. I would watch the sun rise and then want to be out running in it. Or at least out drinking chai in it. Preferably running and then drinking chai. And then I would think this is really super awesome and I wish someone else was here to see it too. But I wouldn't call anyone because even if I have known them since the beginning of time, I always feel like my friends are in the middle of something far more important and any call I make is an inconvenience to them. Because I am all sorts of ridiculous. And I don't even know where I am going with this anymore.

Oh yeah, I need to stop talking myself out of awesome things because I don't have the guts to do them alone or to ask someone to come with me.

If you know how to do this, please tell me.

Lyric of the moment: "Do you like dreaming of things so impossible or only the practical or ever the wild or waiting through all your bad bad days just to end them with someone you care about..."

Sunday, December 4, 2011


The truth is that if I had it all to do again, I would. Without hesitation. I never regret anything that ever made me happy, anything I ever gave or anyone I ever loved. I feel like an idiot for starting to think that this true love stuff could ever happen for me, but regardless of how it ends or how long it lasts, love is always worth it. Giving all I have and going all in is always worth it.

The thing about that awkward girl with the glasses and headgear is that she was fearless. She climbed trees and walked on top of the monkey bars. She grew up to jump out of airplanes and run marathons. She is scrappy and she will be fine. If she stops talking about herself in the third person.

I may give up the running streak. At first it was a release but now it feels like I am punishing myself. When I get sad, I have a tendency to withdraw, to work out more, eat less, try to make myself invisible. That's no good and I'm not going to do it. There are too many things I want to do and so much delicious cake I want to eat. Onward and upward. The journey to Awesometown resumes.

Lyric of the moment: "Say whatever you have to say, I'll stand by you. Do whatever you have to do, to get it out and not become a reactionary to hurt the ones you love. You know you never meant to but you do, oh yeah you do. Be whoever you have to be, I won't judge you. Sing whatever you have to sing to get it out and not become a recluse about your house, come out, I know you never meant to but you do, oh but you do. And take whatever you have to take, you know I love ya. Come however you have to come, and get it out and get it out. Take it out on me, take it out on me. I'll give you all, yes I will give you all..."

Saturday, December 3, 2011

That there, that's not me

Lately I've been feeling like a bad person. And I don't want to be a bad person. As Ron Swanson says "You know what makes a good person good? When a good person does something bad, they own up to it.” So I'm owning up. I'm sorry that my words and actions lately have hurt people. I hate the thought of hurting anyone.

I find myself doubting everything. Even more so than usual. I don't know anything anymore. I don't know if I trust myself to know what I need or what's good for me. I just want to be better.

Lyric of the moment: "Please forget the words that I just blurted out. It wasn't me, it was my strange and creeping doubt. It keeps rattling my cage. And there's nothing in this world will keep it down. Even though I might, even thought I try, I can't..."

Friday, December 2, 2011

Let go, jump in, new adventures will begin

I went to see T.E. yesterday because it's where I go when I need perspective. He looks at the situation objectively, helps me see if I am being irrational and when I doubt myself, he makes me feel like I am normal and sane. Everyone I talk to is relieved at the break up, they were worried about things they saw but didn't want to say anything. T.E. said that I am nice by default and I give in to things because I want people to like me. He said I need to value myself more and that, if I ever again feel afraid to say what I think or find myself giving in just to keep the peace, I  need to recognize that as a big red flag and get out. He said that getting out of an unhealthy relationship dynamic is a success, not a failure. And I agree, though it's still sad to lose someone I love.

But I will get through this the way I get through everything. Take the best from it, learn from it, let it make me stronger and move on.

Every day I can feel myself getting happier. The more I go out with friends and accept invitations and reach out to people I haven't talked to in a while, the better I feel. All the happiest times in my life are when I'm surrounded by people, talking about anything and everything, laughing and having a good time. It's hard for me to be social sometimes because I'm still so shy, but I have to keep putting myself out there. I have to keep taking risks and wearing my heart on my sleeve and running through life with unbridled optimism.

The rest of that quote from The Holiday:

"...And sometimes you can even convince yourself that he'll see the light and show up at your door. And after all that, however long all that may be, you'll go somewhere new. And you'll meet people who make you feel worthwhile again. And little pieces of your soul will finally come back..."

The psychic said that the universe would give me whatever I wanted this year, I only have to ask for it. So Universe, what I really want is to go new places and try new things and spend time with awesome and hilarious people. I'd like to go on a fabulous trip. I want to feel like part of a team. And I'd love to cross the finish line of an epic race holding someone's hand. Thank you times infinity squared. Love always, Robot.

Lyric of the moment: "He and I, it's something beautiful, but so dysfunctional it couldn't last. Loved him so but I let him go 'cause I knew he'd never love me back..."

Thursday, December 1, 2011

The streak

I've never actually streaked. Running naked seems like it would be very uncomfortable. But I started a running streak in November. I ran every day, including 2 races (East Ave Grocery Run and Webster Turkey Trot), a few 11-12 mile long runs, and a bunch of shorter solo runs, for a total of 141 miles this month. Most of the time I was sick, so none of those runs were particularly fast or impressive, but I think I just needed to hit the road and work some things out.

I like running alone sometimes, but I missed my friends. Like most things in life, running is better with company.

I don't know if I'll continue the streak through December. If I decide on a race, I may adjust my running schedule accordingly. But I really want to feel better before signing up for another race. It's frustrating to run when I can't breathe well. Hopefully I'm on the right track to feeling better physically and emotionally.

This morning I ran 4 miles with Shooter, then got an unexpected bonus check at work. Even during the rough patches, life never ceases to amaze me with its awesomeness. I have my faults and there are a lot of things I'm still working on, but I am making progress. One day, one mile at a time. Maybe there is hope for me yet.

Lyric of the moment: "So, let go, let go, jump in. Oh well, what you waiting for? It's all right 'cause there's beauty in the breakdown. So, let go, let go, just get in. Oh, it's so amazing here..." (From one of my favorite movies and favorite soundtracks ever).