Saturday, January 26, 2013

I'll be moving to Tumblr

Hi everyone!

I've begun posting more regularly on my Tumblr page
and will be deleting this account by the end of the month. Hope you're all doing well.
Thanks for visiting!

Monday, July 30, 2012

A Fresh Start

Last month I decided I would begin writing about what scares me. Doing this left me feeling very tired, sad, and my heart hurt. I would rather spend more time on what I enjoy. This coming semester I'll be taking a product design class, a sketching for animators and illustrators class, and hopefully a composition class. I'm also feeling very excited about performing stand up more often as well as looking into improv and sketch comedy. The Upright Citizens Brigade Theater in LA offers opportunities in all those areas and I'm looking forward to taking classes there soon.

In four years, I'll be 35. I'll be entering a new demographic. Before that happens I would like to take classes in Storyboarding, Animation, Improv, Writing/Performing Sketch Comedy, audition for a commercial or two, go to a casting call, write a pilot script for a sitcom episode, finish writing and illustrating my 'muckaluck the duck' book . . . If I can do all of that within the next four years and see where that takes me, that would be very nice. In the meantime, I feel very fortunate to have my administrative assistant job.

I would rather do something poorly with friends than do something well on my own. And the goal is to eventually be doing something well with friends :) I want to stay on track with drawing and writing/performing and if any of you would be so kind as to remind me of that when it looks like I'm going off track. My sister told me I'm the happiest she's ever seen me since I started taking art classes. I'm very thankful to have found friends and a path I can enjoy, appreciate, and grow on.

I'll posting most of my updates on my Facebook page. Please follow me there :)

Monday, July 16, 2012

Looking back on why I became a Buddhist

I wrote this several years ago when I was just beginning to practice Buddhism. If someone were to ask me now why I'm a Buddhist, I'd say because it's a good fit but I do think it's interesting to look at where my mind was several years ago.

For the last couple of months/years I have had a developing interest in Buddhism and am now a practicing Buddhist attending services and meditation at Orange County Buddhist Church. While I do believe it is by the grace of God that I am a Buddhist, I do feel more at home in my Buddhist community. For me, the label Christian has become too privileged for me to feel comfortable using it. I will be accepted by certain groups and people more readily and simply because I tell them I am a Christian. To me, this feels a bit wrong. I would like to become more understanding, aware of and involved with people who are misunderstood, ridiculed and unappreciated. One of way of doing this, for me, is giving up the privilege of the Christian label. If I truly believed that God cared about whether or not I was a Christian, I would be a Christian but because I believe God cares more about my heart and how I live in community, I am a Buddhist.
I am a Buddhist because when I meditated I experienced peace and when I chanted I experienced community and oneness. I am a Buddhist because I meditate as Buddha meditated and I chant as Buddha chanted. I attend OCBC because when I attend services I feel welcomed and appreciated.
There may be some concern that as a Buddhist I am giving up my Christian privilege of going to heaven. I believe that I will stand before God to give an account of my life and where I go from there is dependent on God’s love and wisdom but for now I believe my search for God/in God/through God has led me to Buddhism and to deny this part of me/my experience now because people are afraid of me/for me would be a rejection/denial of God’s work in my life.
Anthony De Mello wrote ‘whatever happened to life before death?” I think that is a profound question. I appreciate the ritual of Buddhism and this was missing in my understanding/practice of Christianity. When I read ‘Zen Mind, Beginner’s Mind’ by Shunryu Suzuki, I began crying because I was so struck by the love, peace, and contentment that I experienced through his writing. I wondered if it was possible to live such a life. I spent the majority of my life not wanting to live but to die and go to heaven. I was not living. Practicing/studying Buddhism helped me to see and experience what I was missing: presence. I was not present for much of my life but through the practice and study of meditation I am now able to better know what it means to be present. Could I come to this awareness/realization through Christian practice and fellowship? Yes. But, I didn’t. I came to it through Buddhism.  And right now I am appreciating and getting involved w/the OCBC community and will continue to do so until it becomes clear to me that I need to move on.
When I am listening to a Dharma talk, I am reminded of parallels and the truth that I understand in/through Christianity. I can acknowledge these reminders w/appreciation. If someone says something that differs from my understanding I can try to seek clarification or I can simply accept that is his or her view and not mine. I am able to approach Buddhism with a healthy and, I believe, an appropriate sense of detachment. Whereas, if I’m at church and disagree w/a speaker or an author, I feel anger, resentment and am too distracted to learn from them. I feel like it’s my job or responsibility to speak out against and challenge what I disagree with but where is the true merit in that if I am only one who has a problem. Wouldn’t it be better for me to find a community where I can practice in peace? In my own way, I believe I am being the change I would like to see in the world.

What would I write if I wasn't afraid?

This year I began asking myself, what would I write if I wasn't afraid? I would like to begin writing more about what it means for me to a Buddhist and what it means for me to not be a Christian. One fear of mine is that people will leave once they know who I am. I've kept my Buddhism hidden for the most part for the last three years because of how certain people acted and how I imagined other people would act. I don't think this is fair to me or to people who want to know who I am. I would like to begin practicing being more honest and open and being less all right with simply passing. And sure, I'm still probably not going to bring up my Buddhism during family get togethers but by writing about this on my blog I'm giving myself an opportunity to process my experience and give others a chance to relate to my experience as well. I'd rather people relate to me as a person than as a Buddhist but it's through my being a Buddhist that I've experienced the greatest sense of being 'other', of being misunderstood, and it's the experience that I'm looking forward to writing through and processing.

Monday, July 9, 2012

The Day I Learned How to Swear

I was 26 before I learned what it felt like to swear. I had experimented with ‘drat’ and ‘dagnabbit’ in High school and even said ‘sucks’ and ‘crap’ on occasion but had never expressed the words known primarily by their first letters. The situation was I was a grad student in the Counseling program at Cal State Fullerton awaiting news about my practicum placement. I was already on track to graduating a year late because I did not get into an agency my first time around. I was experiencing a sense of urgency.
            It was February, a couple of weeks before the practicum faire, that I contacted the agency that I had previously interviewed with the semester before and set up a second interview. I went through the interview, thought it went quite well, and was confident about being accepted by the agency. Flash forward to May.
            By this time I had contacted/interviewed with a dozen or so other counseling agencies but did not receive any offers. I was becoming a bit anxious to say the least.
I still held out hope for my first agency until I heard a friend in my class tell me she had just been offered an internship by that agency. She had interviewed with them the week prior.
I called the agency to ask about my application just so I could have some sense of closure and was told they were sorry but there were no positions left. I asked if there was feedback they could offer me that I could take into future interviews and was told the following, “Well, it’s hard to give you feedback, what with such short notice, but there are certain characteristics that we look for and I’ve heard you do comedy and that you do it well.  I think you should look into doing that.” I said thank you and hung up.
            I wrote in my journal for a little bit and then called my friend who was also in the program. I told her what happened and that I was disappointed. She said I seemed to be taking it well but asked how I really felt. I told her I felt the situation was really fucked up and that ‘short notice’ line was such bullshit because they knew they didn’t want me back when I interviewed in February but didn’t tell me because they wanted to wait until they found someone so that they could just tell they were sorry but there were no positions left. It felt good to swear. I was surprised. It felt freeing.

Friday, July 6, 2012


There was a little blackbird on my window
            A little blackbird on my window sill

The little blackbird began to tap
            Tap tap
                        Tappita tap tap

The little blackbird spoke
And I spoke back
            Shackalack Shackalack diddly dat
The little bird spoke
And I spoke back

Go away blackbird go away
Go away blackbird go away

I don’t want to know you
I don’t want to see you
I don’t want to feel you
goodbye goodbye

I don’t want to know you
I don’t want to see you
I don’t want to feel you
goodbye goodbye

The little blackbird flew away

Blue River

Blue River Blue river
Wash over me
Transcendence is found in equality

Blue River Blue river
Carry me into the sea
Let your blueness consume
It is a part of me

Crystalline      Flowing
            Transparent    Absolving

As it’s slowly, slowly, stirring,
Slowly stirring in my, my, my . . .

Like the darkness that comes before your eyes realize
Like the fog that envelops you as your thoughts crystallize
Like the loneliness felt in the early morning
Like the repercussions of ignored warnings
Like the smile that gives purpose to day
Like the hunger for that which was just forbade
Like the feeling of rhythm that burns in your soul
Like the addictions that are taken to cover over
The void that is left by the absence of a lover