๐ŸŽŠ A New Year A New Hope ๐ŸŒฝ

I just finished a book by John Holt (“Learning All the Time”), he was dead when it was published. It was the first book I read by a dead author, dead at the time of first publication. I loved the book, it had a better way to do education, it was 1985 when it came out, the year I was born. None of his advice was taken in the US, but it’s interesting to know solutions were there then.

Perhaps there are also solutions to the pandemic already that just don’t correspond to the decisions the people with power choose to make? If not I’m sure there will some day be solutions. Will they happen? That I don’t know. Will there be solutions, I think so.

The world is filled with bright minds, minds brighter than mine, but so often society punishes those people for being abnormal, it doesn’t matter if you are abnormally above or abnormally below the average, the society I live in venerates the average in almost every way, with the exception of sports and some other things it’s constantly encouraged to be average in a world of natural diversity.

The roman gardens were very straight and controlled, I think in the US every attempt has been made to keep the minds of children and then the adults they become like that, in line, dull, coordinated…

My mind is more like an English garden, ramshackle, with lilacs spilling way over where they were “meant to be,” for so long I tried to prune myself into the average I was told to be and it was a large and painful chore to me.

But I’m done with that.

Kwanzaa was a good vehicle for me to reflect on who I am, who I want to be.

Part of Kwanzaa is the “Tamshi La Tambiko” as we are very mixed I adapted it last year, we are African, but also mixed, I feel strongly that Kwanzaa still exists for us and was unintentionally meant for all of us as we are truly African Diaspora.

Our fathers and mothers came here, lived, loved, struggled and built here. At this place, their love and labor rose like the sun and gave strength and meaning to the day. For them, then, who gave so much we give in return. On this same soil we will sow our seeds, and liberation and a higher level of human life. May our eyes be the eagle, our strength be the elephant, and the boldness of our life be like the lion. And may we remember and honor our ancestors and the legacy they left for as long as the sun shines and the waters flow.
For our people everywhere then:For Shaka, Samory, and Nzingha and all the others known and unknown who defended our ancestral land, history and humanity from alien invaders;
For Garvey, Muhammad, Malcolm, and King; Harriet, Fannie Lou, Sojourner, Bethune, and Nat Turner and all the others who dared to define, defend, and develop our interests as a people;
For our children and the fuller and freer lives they will live because we struggles;
For Kawaida and the Nguzo Saba, the new system of views and values which gives identity, purpose, and direction to our lives;
For the new world we struggle to build;
And for the continuing struggle through which we will inevitably rescue and reconstruct our history and humanity in our own image and according to our own needs.

– Maulana Karenga


Out of Africa our first mother and father lived and died, their lives are a mystery to us, but without them we would not be here and their blood runs through our veins and their DNA builds our bodies and powers our cells with energy from mitochondria past directly from our shared mother. Over time we traveled far and wide, from the east country of the rising sun, the middle kingdom, the cold mountains, the islands of endless summer, the country of corn, and the country of the eagle and the snake.

Our fathers and mothers came here, lived, loved, struggled and built here. At this place, their love and labor rose like the sun and gave strength and meaning to their days. For them, then, who gave so much we give in return. On this same Earth we will raise our children in tenderness and patience, seeking a higher level of human awareness and unity intil someday world peace is possible. Our eyes are the eagle, our strength is the elephant, and tour courage is the lion. We remember and honor our ancestors and the legacy they left for as long as we have air in our lungs and love in our hearts.

For our people everywhere then: for all the just defenders of virtue of all times and races, for all those who spoke and speak for human rights and harmony with nature; for our children and the fuller and freer lives they will live because we struggle; for Kawaida and the Nguzo Saba, who founded Kwanzaa, for Mamoe Tanaoe who founded our family, for our own soul which revels to use our views and values which gives identity, purpose, and direction to our lives; for the new lives we struggle to build; And for the continuing struggle through which we all go to live our best lives possible according to our own needs, courage and wisdom.

– Maulana Karenga adapted by Sakura Mendoza (November 6th, 2019)

The reflections for January 1st: “Who am I?” “Am I really who I say I am?” “Am I doing all I could be?

A note on faith from the past: “Living fully means… tuning into the small, still voice of belief, even when doubt is loud and obnoxious.

The last day of Kwanzaa is about Imani, faith, for me that’s faith in myself.

So it begs the question who am I?

I don’t fully know that, but I know I don’t like owning dogs and cats, that’s a start. I guess I’m a book and people person, I’m a coffee person, I have kids, but I’m not a kid person… I’m a music person, an idea person, an action person. An honest person.

In this cartoon from the Daft Punks there are blue musicians from another world painted peach and enslaved on Earth:

I guess I’m still unpainting myself, a lot of times when I do find who I am, I don’t like what I find, because when I find doesn’t fit with the life I have, so finding out who I am means work of change and sometimes that’s too much for the energy I really have in the moment.

christmas face mask

I’d like to start this year in gratitude, five things that are good right now, 1. My son and I connecting over colors, numbers and letters he is authentically interested. 2. Leaving behind the habit of trying to teach my daughter more than she wants to know now that she knows basic reading, writing and math. 3. That I am much more able to forgive myself and others than I was before. 4. Balloons, we blew up balloons for my sister’s birthday and I just still love balloons. 5. Steam from tea cups, it never gets old to me, the simple things make the day wonderful or bearable, if I don’t let myself enjoy them, there isn’t much to enjoy then.


๐Ÿง  Resolution for 2021๐Ÿ•ฏ๏ธ

Inspiration vs excitement, it’s something I’ve been thinking about for almost a year.

Excitement seems to drive many people to do things, try things, accomplish things, buy things, but not me, not that much.

So the question became what does drive me?

One of the things is truth, I’m haunted by truth, I’m bound to it.

If I had the most attractive, easiest to live with husband in the world, and I knew it wasn’t real love, because he was gay, or loved another person, or perhaps no one else, but not me, it wouldn’t be anything to me. I’m sure I have inconsistencies and mistakes in my knowledge, but I just can’t overlook the elephant in the room the way many of my close family or friends seem to be able to do.

I don’t have autism, although one of types causes inability to lie as normal (Asperger’s), I can lie if I needed to do so to save my life, but I hate it, it drains me, it weighs on me.

My daughter was diagnosed today with sensory processing disorder, and I don’t know too much about it, the doctor did explain, but I had never heard of it before so it will be a bit longer until I understand it at a deep level.

My resolution for 2021 is to get a CES machine that can stimulate her vegus nerve to help her calm down. It’s a very specific resolution this year to get and use a CES (Cranial Electrotherapy Stimulation) machine.

Neuromodec | What is CES?

I was crying myself to sleep earlier tonight, and for some reason I thought I’ll write, just in case anyone else was crying themselves to sleep on New Year’s Eve, they may someday know they were not alone in that.

I was crying because while my five year old daughter was trying to kick my father, he tripped her and she fell on the floor. She should not be kicking anyone, but she can’t act properly, her brain is a bit stunted. Her prefrontal cortex shuts down, her executive center is approximately like a two year old, even though she is five.

Her father was working at her age, I was attending public school, and my daughter can’t get through 1 week without hitting or kicking a family member.

But she isn’t at the level of a normal person. Maybe someday she will be, probably so, but not yet.

I want to always keep my daughter safe, but she is so annoying she isn’t safe with her father, my father, my sister, and barely me sometimes. I don’t really blame anyone, if you haven’t been with her for 3 hours or more you really would have no idea someone like her existed, unless you have a relative like that, then you know…

The reality is that she shouldn’t have been kicking anyone, the reality is that adults should walk away or put the kids away rather than hurting them, but the reality is that it doesn’t always happen like that either, adults hurt kids, kids hurt adults, families are super messy microcosms.

I really hate that, I love order, I love serenity, I love justice, and families are such gray areas, such disordered meshes of varieties of ethics, personalities, preferences and hobbies, families are ripe with small, medium and large injustice that go unchecked, unexamined and uncorrected.

I’ve lived alone, I’ve lived with family, I won’t deny they both have advantages, but I wouldn’t say family is better than no family, it’s close to even, lots of benefits, lots of costs. In my life, family member were the ones who hit from you, lie to you and steal from you more, not less, but they also cook for you, support you, and keep you alive.

If I didn’t live with my dad currently, my daughter may not have been knocked down with her head hitting the floor. I consoled her about the event, she feels better, she will probably heal physically and mentally, but possibly not, she says she wanted to die because of it, very dramatic, but possibly how she actually feels, who would know better than her how she feels. I worry for her emotions, I worry for her brain, but I already have a doctor for her, I have a treatment plan, we go, we try, it’s not “perfect” but it’s not an emergency in that it isn’t emergent meaning “new”. Modern brain research is that the brain is incredibly fragile physically, a small bump causes micro bleeds, they typically heal well, but each time they possibly won’t heal well. The brain isn’t tough. So I don’t like the whole damn thing, I get it, it happens, in real life it happens, but I hate it.

My father apologized, my daughter apologized, will the brain bleeds mend properly, maybe so, maybe not.

It’s painful because 1. It’s painful to know that I can’t really take a break and have my kids be 100% safe, when they are not with me they are not 100% safe (even when they are with me they aren’t). 2. It’s painful to know I don’t have the family I would like to have where we would protect each other from violence not engage in it. 3. It’s painful for me because my daughter’s brain is already not 100% and getting knocked on the back of the head isn’t the best for improving it. I’m trying to go the other way. 4. It’s painful for me because it’s my sister’s birthday and I wanted the day to be without drama, fighting, emotionally trauma/neediness/counseling my daughter which I hate to do and am not good at.

But I look at the truths, 1. My kids are not ever going to be 100% safe, that’s out of my hands, they get hurt in front of me all the time, 2. I’ve never had a family life I liked, ever, the fact I’m still trying at least says something for tenacity and optimism (I come from a broken family, I hate passive aggressive comments and our beliefs vary so widely that there is more tension than I enjoy), 3. Accidents have, do and will continue to happen, dealing with them is better as a strategy than fearing them, 4. I can want the day to be without drama as much as I want to, but odds are it will have drama. Perhaps someday I will look back and miss the kids, but I very much doubt I will miss the drama, it’s not something I like.

So life isn’t perfect, I’m not perfect, my family isn’t perfect, 2020 wasn’t perfect, but it won’t be perfect in 2021 or ever, I won’t be, my family won’t be, but I’ll do my best, I’ll give my kids the best effort I can. I’ll try not to wallow in negativity, but I don’t turn away from it either, it shows me who I am.

I read many quotes that hate is bad, poison ext.

But one day I found the idea that it protects us from evil, by showing us what isn’t good for us that we are in the presence of evil.

I believe that.

I believe hating my family hurting one another is correct for me, that it will focus me to find solutions of conflict management of adults needing breaks, of safe spaces for children.

Hate drives me to work into the night, to ask an expert, to pay an expert, to not let things stand indefinably that should not be let to stand.

Some hate is silly, some hate is destructive, some hate is not worth it, but I don’t believe the world is a good enough place that it’s not a valid tool to have in my tool box. I still unfortunately find a place for it, if people are stoned to death for silly things like made up adultery ext, that is and does quality as evil to me and I hate it, I realize the whole world isn’t falling apart at all times, but I know there are still evils in the world that I don’t feel the need to forget, overlook, or embrace as if they are not evils.

I don’t have all the answers about myself, about how to live with my family well, but what I find surprising is how much what works for someone else won’t work for me, what works for other children, won’t fit my daughter, how distinct people can be on the inside seems to be so much a vaster range then the outside. I wonder if someday we will have an easy way to see ourselves and one another as we are rather than to seldom find out about anyone else apart from best friends and spouses?

So kind of a dark post, but I wanted anyone else in the darkness to know they aren’t there alone.

Sometimes it seems counter intuitive to name the ugly things in life, and it doesn’t have to be public, but it should be done, to not name them prevents the dissolution of the victim-hood that corresponds to them, when you don’t name them you are tightly bound together, that makes it harder to walk away and not walking away makes it harder to more forward. We are the captains of our souls, but not the captains of the planet, one of the hardest things is to know how much we can do to change our lives and our world and another is how much we struggle to let go of what we can never change in our lives and our world, but there’s always tomorrow to work on that.

Sometimes in our lives, we all have pain. We all have sorrow, but if we are wise, we know that there’s always tomorrow.

– Bill Withers (Lean on Me)

This is the first New Year’s Eve I’m away from my husband in a long time, since we met… but in my heart I’m with him. I wonder if he will notice? Because I don’t know if there is something real that connects people in love or just something imaginary, even after thinking it’s real, I know that I don’t really know.

I don’t know why people from the same families can be so different, why it’s so difficult for people in general to get along and what motivates me to do the things that I actually do vs the things I think I would like to be doing. The world is a mystery, other people are a mystery to me and I am a mystery to myself still at 35.

But I have some peace in my heart because I have hope for the future, hope to do well for those I love who need me, gratitude to those who help me like the neurology team and the makers of the CES, hope that people are generally good and usually do over time find solutions to large and small problems. I have a lot of hope that things will get better and everything will be all right, although largely imperfect if not next year, then the next and if not next generation, then the next, eventually…

The issues my daughter have have been in recorded history for over 3000 years, the treatment has been around for 6 years. For some people this is the best time to have ever been alive, it’s easy to forget that.

hindsight 2020