The Therapy Journals of the Fat-Headed Klingon Woman

One woman's journey to becoming Her True Self

And the Award Goes To… May 8, 2018

Hello all!  Today an event took place that I was not looking forward to, but which I survived, although not without my embarrassing moment.  That’s right, folks, it’s Awards Assembly Day!

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In case I haven’t mentioned it at least 10 or 20 dozen times, I’m a teacher.  A high school teacher.  A high school English teacher.  I teach in a small rural high school with about four hundred students and today… was the end of the year awards assembly.  This thing runs about three hours and includes every award known to mankind.  The class awards were about 2/3 of the way through it, and I had been waiting anxiously and with great dread for my turn at the microphone.

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Okay, so maybe I wasn’t dreading it THAT badly, but I was hoping I could get through it without looking like a complete dork.  Pretty unlikely, in the grand scheme of things.  I only had five awards to give out- two in regular English, two in Honors English, and one for most AR points.  AR is Accelerated Reading, a program which requires them to read books and take little quizzes over them, and accumulating so many points per nine weeks.

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So we sat and sat until the English department was next.  We stood at the end of the stage entrance.  We stood at the front of the stage entrance.  Finally, we took the stage and I was third in line in the department. I teach sophomores and the senior teacher was the first at the mic, partly because she is also the yearbook sponsor and she needed to get back down to the floor and continue taking pictures.  (UGH! Pictures of me. Why?!)

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Finally it was my turn and I proceeded to lean down to the microphone and say “Good morning!” Nothing too horrible there, except thanks to the mic I was much too loud.  I jumped, I’m sure everyone else jumped, and I felt like a complete goof ball. Then I repeated it, much more softly, and introduced myself.  Crickets.  I should point out here that a number of the other teachers received a few cheers, a bit of applause, and the occasional “Wooo!!” just for stating their names.  I did not.  Given that it’s my first year here and they don’t really know me all that well, that’s not surprising, but it did hurt just a tiny bit.

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The rest of my brief time at the podium went without incident, unless you count the fact that I didn’t give my award recipients a warm hug, like my co-worker who gave her awards right before I did.  I didn’t even shake their hands.  I just handed them their certificates, whispered a word of encouragement, smiled, and tried to stay out of the way of their pictures.  I failed to usher them to the middle of the stage for that- they just stood at the edge of the stage, to the right of the podium.  It was all quite awkward.  I felt like a newborn baby deer.

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So anyway, my hope is that next year I can give my awards (since it doesn’t appear that I can in any way avoid this torture) without incident or awkwardness, but I know that has absolutely zero chance of happening.  I was basically born to be awkward.  One wouldn’t think that someone who has been involved in community theatre for almost five years would be so nervous in front of a crowd, but here we are.

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Only one week and one day of school left now, which is amazing.  This year has flown by, and I’m so thankful for how well it has gone.  There have been many moments when I have felt that I should run away and become a sheep herder in Tibet, but I have resisted the urge.  I’ve been rehired for next year, which is a great thing.  I’m going to spend much of the summer working on improving my lesson plans and trying to fix things so that next year I have even fewer days where I want to run away.

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Speaking of running away, only one month from tomorrow, I will be on a plane back to my beloved Alaska, with my beloved boy, and I can’t wait!  It’s going to be a great adventure, and I pray he has a good time and loves it as much as I do.

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Until next time,

D.

 

Big Dreams and Near Horizons April 30, 2018

Hello all!  This has been a crazy year and I have really fallen off the habit of updating this blog.  With any luck, maybe I can improve upon that.  Let’s see.  Where to start?

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One of the biggest things that has been going on has actually just concluded.  Last night was the final performance of the final show of the season for my local community theatre, and * I * was the director!  The show was called Ripcord.  It was about two little old ladies who live in a senior center and share a room.  One of them is bitter and jaded and cranky, and the other is perpetually perky, chirpy and talkative.  The cranky one wants the room to herself (of course) and the perky one just wants the bed by the window.  They decide to make a bet.  If Cranky Abby can make Chirpy Marilyn mad, she wins.  If Marilyn can make Abby scared, she wins.  They begin to pull all kinds of pranks on each other to win the bet and achieve their ends.  It’s a wonderful script, and it was a wonderful show.

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The experience started with auditions back in mid-March and ended last night with the final performance and set strike (arguably the least enjoyable part of community theatre, or any theatre, from what I understand).  I was blessed to be able to cast a bunch of really talented people, and also had some VERY talented set designers and light designers.  They helped me out every step of the way and I couldn’t have done it without them.

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I expected to be emotional at the end.  You know, to cry during the final bows of the closing performance, but I didn’t.  The only time I cried was actually the second night, when they had had an exceptional performance and a great audience, and I cried during one pivotal scene and during the final bows that night.  Last night, all I felt was pride and relief.  People keep asking me if I’m going to do it again, and even though there were moments when I said “NEVER AGAIN!” I will probably end up doing it if the right show comes along.  I expect that to take a long time though, and I would really like to try to be back ON stage again first.  Right now, though, I feel too fat and unattractive to be onstage, and I don’t plan to audition again until I lose more than a few pounds, which leads me to one of the next big things I have hopefully coming up this year.

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Since I returned to teaching, I found out that our insurance covers weight loss surgery.  I have been contemplating doing that for a long time now.  Within the next month I am planning to start the process toward surgery and will hopefully be having the procedure done in September or sometime in the fall.  I’m not sure which procedure it will be; it all depends on what the doctor recommends.  In the meantime, I have something REALLY special to look forward to, and it is one of the biggest dreams I have had for many years.

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The Boy and I are going to Alaska!  Yes, indeedy, we have a vacation planned to Alaska in June.  I haven’t been back since I worked there in the summer of 2015 (one of my most amazing adventures EVER!) and now that I will have some free time in the summer, I’ve saved some funds and I’m taking at least ONE of my kids and showing him the most beautiful and awesome place in the world!  I’m SO looking forward to it.  I can’t wait to show him the places I went and the things I got to do.  I’m just really praying we have a great time.  I have so much planned!

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That is, of course, all depending on surviving the last few weeks of school.  I totally expect to be fine, but these final days of the school year will be challenging.  The kids get restless, the schedule gets busy and packed with interruptions, and the days get hotter.  I know I won’t have too many difficulties, and if I do, at least I have some big things to look forward to, and one big thing to look back on, and hopefully that will keep my head above water.

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With that, I need to get back to lesson planning.  So many things to anticipate, it’s hard to keep my focus, but the only way to get to where I want to go is to pass through where I am.

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Until next time,

D.

 

So Far, So Good! January 6, 2017

Hello, all!  Well, one week into 2017.  How’s it looking?  Things are ok in general, I think.  We got some rare winter weather here, which basically means the roads are like a skating rink after dark.  I was on my way home from work a minute ago, didn’t realize how slick it was, lost control and slammed sideways into a curb on the right side.  Scuffed both my rims pretty good, but if there was any tire damage I couldn’t tell it.  SIGH!!

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I’m pretty concerned for my children.  They decided it was a good day to go to the movies.  And when they got out of the movies they found it necessary to stop by Wal-Mart for a minute.  This is disconcerting.  I hope and pray Daughter S. doesn’t have any trouble driving.  If she kills her car she is going to be distraught.  Daughter J. already doesn’t have a car.  She ran her engine out of oil some time ago and has been riding the Mom Taxi ever since.  SIGH again!!

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So in my last post I talked about goals and projects for the new year.  You know, like everyone does.  I didn’t really outline any major plans at that time, but I thought I would share the ones that I came up with after I posted.  In 2017 I am working on the following:

1: Every day I am going to do some form of purposeful exercise, even if it’s tiny. It may be 20 pushups, or 50 leg lifts, or even just lying in the floor breathing from my abdomen with a heavy book on my stomach (a voice lessons thing).  Someday I may feel like doing something more substantial, but for right now that is all I can muster.

2: Every day I am going to drink at least a gallon of water.  I started that the day after Christmas and I have done well.  It definitely seemed to have a positive effect on my Weight Watchers efforts.  My inspiration was something like this:

daily-gallon-water-jug

3:  Every day I am going to take one item, no matter how large or small, from my garage to the trash.  I can’t tackle my garage all in one day.  It’s just a given.  Sometimes I come home from work on Saturday and feel like working on it, and I’ll open the garage door, start dragging things out into the driveway, attempting to sort and organize and cull… and after a few hours my energy disappears and all have done is rearrange the chairs on the Titanic, and I give up and shove it all back in and shut the door down.  So I figure if I take one thing out every single day of the year, by the end I will have made some real progress.  As a side note, I discovered it is super easy to donate things to the new Goodwill store we have here.  I’ve already unloaded one big bag of clothes in 2017 and it’s only the first week.  So I figure if I donate a bag or a box a week, along with the one item a day from garage to trash, I’m golden.  I’ll have a clean garage by this time next year.  I hope.

4:  I’m also going to try really hard to take better care of myself, health and beauty-wise. My mom has always been really good about that. She washed her face, brushed her teeth, and put on her Oil of Olay or whatever, with the result that there was a particular smell to “Bedtime Mom” when she came in to tell us goodnight: Listerine and Moisturizer.  Unfortunately, I’ve never been one of those “nightly beauty ritual” girls.  Truthfully, there have been evenings I’ve slept in my stage makeup.  I know, it’s a horrible habit.  So I don’t wash my face every night, or put lotion on my dry cracky feet, or mani-pedi, or any of that stuff.  Half the time I don’t even brush my teeth before bed.  So this year I am going to work on all of that, right down to my toenails.

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All of this is on top of the continuing Weight Loss Saga, as well as the ever-present search for Love and Truth and Answers From The Cosmos, and also trying to learn everything I can from my theater stuff so I will be ready to direct in the next couple of seasons.  I don’t know what I want to direct; I just know I want to do it.  I believe I can.  I would really like to write something for our theatre to produce, and then direct it myself.  That would be the ultimate.  I just don’t have any good ideas yet.

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For now, my most important goal is to not crash my car on my way to work in the morning.  And holding my breath until the kids get home from town.  Everybody be safe out there!

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Until next time,

D.

P.S.  The kids just pulled in the driveway.  Whew!!!

 

 

No More ABCs April 14, 2016

Hello, all!  Well, my plan to follow the A-Z challenge has clearly gone off the rails. I have no excuse, really. I just let it slip through my hands. Last time I tried to do this, I only got a few days behind and would write entries covering two or three letters at a time and made it through the whole month. I think I’m like ten days behind at this point, so I’m just calling it. A-Z Challenge- time of death 9:56pm.

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So what else can I talk about if I am not constrained by an alphabet theme?  I had a fun few moments tonight endulging in nostalgia. I was at my mom’s house and she found an old box of cassette tapes that was my music collection in high school. One of the tapes she found was Weird Al’s “Dare To Be Stupid” album. She popped it into the tape player and although it sounded pretty warp-y, it was really funny to hear all those old songs I hadn’t heard in a while. And as an added bonus I discovered a way to torture my 14 year old son! He has always liked Weird Al pretty well when I would listen around the house or in the car or whatnot. But tonight! Oh, tonight, he was quite adamant that the warped-sounding tape playing “YODA” was something sent from Satan. I kept singing along and annoying him as he was literally dragging me away from the room where the tape player was and begging to go home. Then when we got in the car, I kept singing what I could remember of the song, just to aggravate him, and he decided he would fight fire with fire, plugged his phone into the auxiliary cord and played his favorite heavy metal or whatever genre it falls into, from a group entitled, I believe, “Dream Evil.”  Sadly for him, that particular song didn’t bother me that much.

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Tomorrow night The Boy and I are getting together with some theater friends and watching the movie of the next play that the theater is doing, “Mary Poppins.” We are meeting in someone’s home and everyone is bringing food. They thought people might enjoy watching the movie to get jazzed up for auditions. I’m not even sure I am auditioning for the show, but I usually enjoy hanging out with the theater people, and goodness knows The Boy needs some social interaction, so I thought why not?

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The other thing I have been wanting to get the kid involved in is improv. ALT has started a new group. They meet weekly and play improv games along the lines of “Whose Line Is It, Anyway?” I was trying to explain what it was all about and I told him to look up Whose Line on YouTube and he loved it!! We watched it together for quite a little while and I am thinking he may go with me to the next meeting. This is all with an eye toward getting him to audition for Poppins, or the next musical later in the season. He is a ham, he is hilarious, and he is good off the cuff, a natural performer.

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Anyway. I guess we will see what happens. It is entirely possible that one theater nerd in the family is enough.

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Until next time,

D.

 

 

Just A Brief Update January 16, 2016

Hello, all!  It’s really late, but for some reason I am in the mood to blog and it has been way too long, so here I am.  Things are pretty good at the moment.  After I returned from Alaska and got my Daughter J. married off, I went back to work at a place I had worked before, off and on for about 12 years now.  I was preparing to audition for Ardmore Little Theater’s Fiddler On the Roof and I ended up getting asked to Stage Manage, which for me is just as much fun as being in the cast.  It’s going to be a wonderful show, I can already tell.  The cast is a perfect mix of experienced and newbie, and everyone is really enthusiastic and cooperative.  For now.  I feel wretched and traitorous saying this, may ValJean forgive me, but I think Fiddler may end up topping Les Mis with regard to just the number of cast members, beauty of the sound produced, and the general experience of the production being one of a cohesive team being dedicated to a common high goal, which is creative excellence.  In short, this cast has got it goin’ on!

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It’s January 16 and my Christmas tree is still up.  Between work and the theater I am working 13 hours a day and I just haven’t been in the mood to mess with it.   Unfortunately the two squatters living in this house, who I just happened to give birth to, wouldn’t do any housework or take it upon themselves to UN-decorate the Christmas decorations without a gun to their heads.  Figuratively speaking, obviously. So I’m thinking maybe the tree will be down by Valentine’s Day.  That would definitely be a record for me.  Who knows, maybe I’ll feel like messing with it before then.

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Health and fitness-wise, life is … well, let’s just say I’m not working as hard on that as I have in the past.  I have tried to get my head together and it just doesn’t seem to be working.  I can’t afford to actually pay money for Weight Watchers right now, I can’t seem to manage to do low carb the right way (or stick with it longer than a few days), and exercise is lower on my priority list than gum surgery.  Maybe one of these days I’ll get back on the wagon.

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Anyway.  It is later than late and I work early tomorrow, so I wish good health and good blessings on each and every one.

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Until next time,

D.

 

 

 

 

The Year Behind, The Year Ahead… December 31, 2013

Path

Path (Photo credit: Guerito)

Hello all!  I have neglected my beloved blog for a couple of months now, and I do apologize.  I plan to do better with that in the future.  More on that shortly.  So!  It’s New Year’s Eve.  The Big One.  The last hoorah, as it were.  People everywhere are posting their year in review, and I am a total bandwagon-hopper, so here’s mine.  Enjoy!

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For starters, in 2013, nobody died.  Not in my family, at least.  Last year my father lost his mother and his baby sister in the same damn year.  It was pretty bad.  Thankfully this year, we have not lost any close family members.

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My weight loss efforts, on the other hand, suffered an untimely demise.  Well, maybe not entirely.  I have sort of continued to half-heartedly fight the battle of the bulge, but overall this year, I am up by 10 pounds since this time last year.

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Ah, the children.  Yes, of course.  From the beginning of this blog, my kiddos and their progress in life have been a continuing topic of discussion, and they are actually doing pretty well.  Daughter S. is taking college courses, and passing them, and although she is in a temporary lull with regard to having clarity on what she wants to do with her life and how she wants to do it, I think in general, she is in good shape.  Daughter J. is in a period of great growth and striving toward what she wants.  She has a job and a boyfriend and plans for her future.  Next on her list: she wants to learn to drive, and she wants to get married.  THAT particular goal of hers is going to require a lot of work and planning for her to be able to have independence, given her and her boyfriend’s developmental limitations.  Also a lot of therapy for ME, to be able to handle such an event.

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The Boy deserves his own paragraph.  After struggling his last few years in public school, we home-schooled last year, and this year we found him a small, private Christian school which uses a homeschool curriculum, and he seems to be growing and making progress and fitting in quite well.  He still has difficulties expressing himself appropriately when he gets really mad, (and he often gets mad for the most incomprehensible of reasons) but when it comes to the expression part, who doesn’t?!  Anyway.  His physical growth and changes in the past year are somewhat mind-blowing to me.  He has outgrown his sisters, his feet are bigger than mine, and I feel pretty certain by this time next year he will be taller than me as well.  NOT looking forward to that, I’ll just be honest.  He will be 13 in May.  For now I will just enjoy not having any teenagers in the house! (The girls turned 20 on November 29.)

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And where do we even begin with my own personal progress in 2013?  It has been a year of stretching my horizons and trying new things.  I took a solo vacation for the first time in my life, and traveled to Charleston, SC to spend a weekend with a bunch of people I didn’t know, and it turned out AMAZING.  Even before that, though, I did the unthinkable.  I auditioned for community theater.  I got up on a stage and sang for a bunch of people I didn’t know, and just like the Charleston trip, it was an amazing thing for me.  I was cast in the Ardmore Little Theatre production of Les Miserables and made so many new friends.  It was literally a life-changing decision when I dug up from somewhere deep inside me the bravery to actually get up on that stage and try out

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If you have been reading me throughout this entire community theater journey, you will know that I also developed a major crush on someone from the theater, which followed me from June through December.  Unfortunately, the person about whom I was obsessing did not think I was special in the same way that I thought he was special.  Right about the time I got clear on that, he decided that one of my best friends was special in that way instead.  And after watching me pine for this person for six months, his sudden attention to her made her decide she thought he was special in that way, too.  That is one of the reasons I haven’t written much here lately.  On a scale of 1 to 10, this infatuation was a 15, so it has taken me some time to begin to heal from all of that.  But I am, finally.  I have had no other choice but to forgive, and my friend and I are still friends.  Possibly better friends than before.  At least, I hope so.

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Before all of this romantic drama happened, the theater journey continued with a leading role in a play that was making its world debut on our stage, which was something I NEVER thought I could do.  Wow.  I never thought I could act, and it turns out, I am not too bad at it.  It helps that the character I was playing was very close to my own personality, so I may not actually be as good an actress as I like to think, but we won’t dwell on that. 🙂   The journey is scheduled to continue as, a week from tonight, I audition for the next ALT production, Young Frankenstein.  I only hope for a chorus part in that one as well.

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To wind up the year, I have been conducting a personal test in the last week or two.  After all the drama with my friend and The Crush hit the fan, I deactivated my Facebook temporarily.  As you will know if you have read me much, Facebook was one of my major outlets, the primary way I connect with people, but I decided it was best if I take a break.  I had said I would probably reactivate it after the New Year, but we’ll see.

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This is getting long, so very briefly, my hopes for 2014:  just happiness.  Beyond that, I’m open.

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My GOALS, on the other hand, are a whole other story.  I want to renew my Weight Watchers efforts with enough dedication and determination that I will remain on the downward slide with regard to scale numbers, and be under 200lbs by this time next year.  I want to steal one of my little sister’s goals and make it a point to connect more with my family.  I want to start saving for my Long Dreamed Of Trip to Alaska for my 45th birthday (which isn’t until 2017!).  And finally, I might just write a book.  My poetry got a lot of attention in 2013, and I hope to draw on some connections I made from that, and maybe let it take me somewhere.

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Above all, I am going to TRY to live in the moment.  Wherever I am, I am going to be intensely focused on being there.  Enjoying where I am, what I am doing, and WHO I am with.  I am not going to be wishing I could be somewhere else or with someone else (read: a romantic relationship).  I am going to focus on trying to be myself, love myself, and perhaps in 2014, finally grow up.  The following are two quotes I want to try to live by in 2014:

If it’s not challenging you, it’s not changing you.

And

Life is a result of the choices you make.  If you don’t like your life, start making better choices.

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HAPPY AND HEALTHY NEW YEAR TO EACH AND EVERY ONE OF YOU!

Until next time,

D.

 

Saying Goodbye to Another Successful Production! November 4, 2013

Back row, L-R: Ezra, William, DeeAnne, Savannah, Bobby, Roger. Front Row, L-R: Denise, Ruth, Terri, Chelsae, Zac.

Hello all!  It has been a while, but I have returned.  My latest endeavor, my first attempt at acting, is now in the history books.  Ardmore Little Theatre’s premiere production of Secrets of the Buttermilk Hotel ended its run yesterday with a matinee performance at 2:30.  Sigh.  Now what?

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I really enjoyed it though.  From the first read-through to the end of set-strike, I have had a great experience.  Meeting new people is always great, and there were several I didn’t know on this production.  AND… nights on end spent hanging out with the people I already know and love = always a plus.  🙂

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A couple of nights ago, we were hanging out after the show, and some of the group were already talking about the next production, which is Young Frankenstein, and for which auditions don’t take place until the first week of January. I expressed my feeling that I wasn’t sure I had it in me to audition again.  I have done one musical and one play, and it took just about all I had to get up there and audition on those two occasions.  At that moment, talking about it the other night, I just couldn’t picture having the guts to get up there another time.  BUT.  (There’s always a BUT) Last night when I got home from set-strike, I was still covered with sawdust and I was already sitting there wondering what song I might use if I DID audition.  So yeah, definitely hooked, I’m afraid.

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But for the time being, I am just happy and content to have had such a successful and enjoyable time in my first play.  Here are some pics of the cast and the set.

Buttermilk cast photo2

Characters: Luna Mooney/Della, Finis Whitless, Donald Wayne Pugh, Floyd Gallaway/Hank Treadwell, Delphine Sykes, Cecil Pickens, Betty Jean McWheaton, J.H. Haynes. (Front) Emily Rake, Madame Zolavitch, Sarah Rake.

Buttermilk at night

Stage creation at its best!

Just to demonstrate how quickly the changeover happens- 24 hours after the show ends, the stage is clean and bare  again.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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The hardest part was not cracking up when the audience would laugh.  When we were doing something that we knew was funny, and was absolutely intended to draw laughs, I always had a hard time keeping a straight face.  But I think the absolute best moment, when there was just ZERO chance of maintaining composure and staying in character… I swear, it was just like the Carol Burnett show,  we had a sound glitch, and a recorded clip of a character pretending to speak into a microphone was played as the longer version instead of the shorter version we were expecting!  It just went on and on, and as we cracked up, the audience caught on that it was not supposed to be happening that way and that we couldn’t NOT laugh, they laughed with us and absolutely roared! It was great!  I guess I can put that on the list of things I still have to learn:  how not to crack up when our efforts are doing what they’re supposed to do- getting laughs!

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Anyway.  I had a great time, I love this place, I love these people, and I can’t wait to work on the next one!

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Until next time,

D.

Our fearless leader, our beloved director and friend, Carl Clark, of the Moonlight Writers.

Our fearless leader, our beloved director and friend, Carl Clark, of the Moonlight Writers.

 

 

 
The Therapy Journals of the Fat-Headed Klingon Woman

One woman's journey to becoming Her True Self

Shawn L. Bird

Original poetry, commentary, and fiction. All copyrights reserved.

Broadside

Smart and surprising

Mostly Bright Ideas

Some of these thoughts may make sense. But don't count on it.

Mad Scientist.Crazy Mom

Welcome to my laboratory: five kids on a farm

A Clean Surface.

simplicity, organization, inspiration, minimalism, humor...and reality

Princess Nebraska

If I am a princess in rags and tatters, I can be a princess inside. If would be easy to be a princess if I were dressed in a cloth of gold, but it is a great deal more of a triumph to be one all the time when no one knows it. -Frances Hodgson Burnett

She Likes Purple

One woman's journey to becoming Her True Self

Crazy with a side of Awesome Sauce

One woman's journey to becoming Her True Self

musings of a madwoman

One woman's journey to becoming Her True Self

Glam-O-Mommy

One woman's journey to becoming Her True Self

happily ever me

a life in progress

Our Little Geekling

"Life is either a daring adventure or nothing." - Helen Keller

mighty maggie

One woman's journey to becoming Her True Self

Writing Finger

Translations of Poetry from Galician and Spanish into English

The Better Man Project ™

a journey into the depths

An Unexplored Wilderness

A writer's journey