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Our Recent Posts

Odometer Rollover

Cheryl's Flotsam & Jetsam - Tue, 07/07/2015 - 11:20

Odometer CC-BY-NC Patrick Phipps on Flickr.

Last week, my personal odometer rolled over; I turned 46 while in San Francisco. As a result, my birthday was a bit different than usual.

I had a meeting planned for midday at the Internet Archive (more on that in a bit) and otherwise planned on exploring the city — at least a few things I’d yet to see.

Tina joined me for the morning and then I was off on my own for the afternoon. I really had a lovely day — despite getting overheated — and Tina returned to the hotel room with birthday cheesecake! So while it was different, it was still a very good birthday.

The whole trip was almost flawless for me. Two great flights (and two hitch-free customs entries), a very convenient little hotel, a great conference (a little overwhelming, but manageable), pride festivities just days after the marriage equality ruling, time to explore, great food, reduced media consumption, great weather, and the highlight of getting to see inside the Internet Archive.

When I realized I was going to be in SF for a library conference and could get to the Internet Archive, and knowing, too, that our library had just purchased equipment from IA, I asked our head librarian if he could arrange for me to get a demo of the equipment. He did — and IA also sent out an invite to all ALA attendees for a tour. I ended up doing both.

The tour was Friday evening and it was very exciting for me to be there. I have long evangelized IA (some people are probably tired of my suggesting, promoting, and sharing about their work) and it was honestly a little bit of a pilgrimage for me. Going back on the Tuesday, I got a one on one demo of the Tabletop Scribe equipment and accompanying software. It was very worth my time. Before I left, the staff even made sure I knew how to get where I was going next by looking up and printing out bus schedules from Google Maps (which for SF gives transit info in real time).

(I have to add, I was ridiculously happy to note the flag flying outside IA is simply the earth.)

 

Yes, I’m Happy.

Cheryl's Flotsam & Jetsam - Mon, 06/08/2015 - 16:31

Lately, I’ve been told by a lot of people that I seem happy. Some are surprised given the upheaval of my life this year, but most seem genuinely relieved to see me going about life confidently, and that there is a sparkle to my eyes again. One person commented how much she enjoyed the way I “see beauty everywhere” in reference to the photos I had been posting; another asked if I was actually happy or if there were things that weren’t coming across in social media and my “public” face.

To answer that: yes, I am really, actually, honestly, happy right now. I am still trying to sort through things, but those things in balance aren’t weighing me down. I owe a lot to the support I’ve had from friends and especially from my therapist. Which brings me to the comment that kind of threw me a bit. One friend said, “You do seem happier; less introspective.”

They said it so casually that I didn’t really think about it until later. Then, I wondered, had I been oversharing about my introspection? Had that made me seem down? Because I don’t think those two are related. I think introspection is not only healthy but necessary. Without it, going through life is a little like driving around with the check engine light flashing — sooner or later you’re just going to break down.

Believe me, I’m still very much in introspection mode in regards to my emotional and spiritual health. I spend a lot of hours thinking about, reflecting on, and otherwise considering how I got to where I am now and which path ahead to take. I know that I am not happy about some of the choices I made that got me here or the ways I hurt people through those choices, but I also accept that I cannot change the past. With that in mind, I continue to move forward, to look both forward and back, and to be happy.