Posts Tagged With: forgiving mistakes

Day 1180: Alone

If you have thoughts and feelings about being alone, you are not alone.

“Alone” is a very common topic and important issue for people. That’s why I’ve written several  previous posts with the word “alone” in the title:

Day 163:  Alone in the presence of others

Day 247: No one is alone

Day 289:  Sometimes, it just helps to know you’re not alone

Day 839: Never worry alone

Day 908:  You are not alone

Day 1028: Can’t do it alone

Last night in a therapy group, nobody was alone — everybody wanted to focus on the topic of being alone.

I, alone, wrote this during the group:

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If you have trouble reading that, I’m sure you’re not alone. It says

In ways we are all alone even when we are with others.

In ways we are connected with others even when we are alone.

I did not take that photo, alone. Here are more photos I took yesterday:

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I’m going to explain that last photo, alone. I wrote that on my office’s lone whiteboard to show somebody they weren’t alone in eating things that aren’t good for them.

When you think of being alone, what song comes to mind?  Am I alone in thinking of this one?

I’m sure I’m not alone in wanting to know I’m not alone today.  You can do your part by leaving a comment, below.

Thanks!


When I first published this post alone, a couple of hours ago, I forgot to say that many of us feel more alone today because of the passing of brilliant comedian Garry Shandling.  Here’s Conan O’Brien, not alone in missing this man:

Categories: group therapy, personal growth, photojournalism | Tags: , , , , , , , , | 42 Comments

Day 620: Shots in the dark

I’m going to take a shot in the dark, to start off this post.

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That’s one of our cats, Oscar. I wasn’t sure whether I had him in frame, as I was taking that shot.

Last night, my boyfriend Michael told me that my son, Aaron, had shot this at him, darkly: “I’m not feeling that great. I think I might be getting sick.”

I’m going to take a shot in the dark, right now, and guess that Aaron is going to ask to stay home from school, after he wakes up, soon, in the less-dark morning.

Yesterday,  it was dark during the afternoon. I took a shot at one of these, in the cafeteria in the hospital where I work:

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I’ve never seen that kind of shot before, have you?

Way back when, in ’67,  I had a conversation with one of my parents’ friends about A Shot in the Darkthe second Pink Panther movie.

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(image found here)

That’s a funny shot of Peter Sellers and Elke Sommer there, in the dark.

Actually, when I was talking to my parents’ friend, Abe, in 1967, I thought I was having a conversation with him about a different movie, which I had just seen.

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(image found here)

Wait Until Dark — starring Audrey Hepburn and Alan Arkin (whom I had never seen before that film) — scared the bejeesus out of me.  Soon after I saw it, when I was talking to Abe, I asked him what he thought of that movie.

Or, I THOUGHT I was asking Abe what he thought of that movie.

Abe’s response really surprised me. I expected him to say, “That movie scared the bejeesus out of me!” (or words to that effect). Instead, Abe, got a big smile on his face and said,

That movie was hilarious!  What a FUNNY movie! I couldn’t stop laughing.

… or words to that effect.

I’m going to take a shot in the dark here: I assume I’m not the only one who has been communicating with somebody and then has this thought:

WHAT?!? That’s not the reaction I expected!  WHAT IS GOING ON HERE???? Is one of us crazy?  Is it me??!??

I didn’t know what to say to Abe. I took a shot in the dark, back then, with this response:

Well … I guess the plot was … sort of far-fetched … I suppose.

And I got out of that conversation as soon as possible.

Would anybody like to take a shot in the dark about why I’m writing about this, now?

In case you don’t want to take a shot at that question,  I’ll tell you. After I had that conversation with Abe, and as I tried to make meaning of that encounter in my mind, I realized what had happened.

Instead of asking Abe this question, “Did you see Wait Until Dark?” I realized that I had asked my parents’ old friend, “Did you see A Shot In The Dark?”

I was horrified.  And that feeling lasted a lot longer than my scared reaction to Wait Until Dark.

For YEARS I felt bad about that encounter. Every time I thought about it, I’d cringe.

Personally, I find that a lot scarier than any scary movie. Why, oh why, did I spend so much time worrying about that simple mistake?  A mistake I made when I WAS ONLY THIRTEEN* YEARS OLD?!!!?

I’m going to take some shots in the dark, now, about why I felt shot, so painfully and frequently, by that memory.

  1. I don’t like to make mistakes.
  2. I really, really, really, really don’t like miscommunication.

 

I just checked in with my son, who is waking up. He didn’t say anything about feeling bad or about staying home from school today. Another mistake on my part! I’m so glad I’ve learned to forgive myself, so much better, these days.

What other shots did i want to take in this post today?

I ran a therapy group at work, yesterday evening, where people talked about worry. IMG_8951

Afterwards, I took these shots in the dark:

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I’ve read lots of great quotes by Audrey Hepburn, who was terrorized (and almost shot?) by Alan Arkin in “Wait Until Dark.” Let’s give Audrey Hepburn this parting shot:

Pick the day. Enjoy it – to the hilt. The day as it comes. People as they come… The past, I think, has helped me appreciate the present – and I don’t want to spoil any of it by fretting about the future.

And, before I publish these shots in the dark, how about some music?

(Theme song from “A Shot in the Dark,” by Henry Mancini, found here on YouTube)

Hmmmm. While it was fun hearing and seeing the opening shots from A Shot in the Dark, here’s the musical shot (also by Henry Mancini) I really want here and now.

(Youtube video of Pink Panther Theme found here)

Thanks to Abe, Peter Sellers, Elke Sommer, Audrey Hepburn, Alan Alda (oooops! Alan Arkin!), Henry Mancini, my son, people who work in groups,  and to you — of course! — for taking a shot at this post, today.


* I was actually 14 years old in ’67, but who’s counting?

Categories: Nostalgia, personal growth | Tags: , , , , , , | 21 Comments

Day 332: A Once in a Lifetime Day

The title of this post refers to Thanksgivukkah* —  which is both Thanksgiving and the first day of Hanukkah.

In case you haven’t heard, both of these holidays occurring on the same day is verrry unusual.

Just now, I did a Google Image search on “Thanksgivukkah” and found lots and lots of treasures.

And, did you guess?  I’m going to share some of those with you, now, along with some of my thoughts.  And as I like to tell people, “We’re all human, so our thoughts can go lots of different places.”

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There we go!  It’s the title of my post AND the date.  I like starting out with “just the facts.”

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Isn’t that cute?  Here are some other thoughts I have about that photo:

  • That baby looks very happy.
  • Am I the only one who is thinking “Boy, this sure points out that this baby is going to die!”
  • What’s the expression on that turkey’s face?
  • Does he know his tail is on fire?

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My thoughts:

  • Wow!  Does this mean this once-in-a-lifetime holiday has made it to the cover of The New Yorker?
  • Wait. No, it doesn’t.
  • I guess this proves that I should start reading the New Yorker again, so I don’t make mistakes like that.
  • Does that turkey know his tail is on fire?

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Speaking of my mistakes, this t-shirt illustrates a mistake I made about Thanksgivikkuh (in addition to misspelling it)  yesterday. I assumed that Thanksgivvikuh occurs once every 70,0000 years. Nope!  It occurred 125 years ago, the last time —  in 1888. The 70,000 year-gap applies to the NEXT time it comes around.

Some thoughts:

  • I wonder how they celebrated it in 1888?
  • I’m pretty sure it didn’t involve t-shirts.
  • Or the New Yorker.
  • The guy wearing that t-shirt is expressing an interesting hope about his future.
  • I wonder when Thanksgivvikuh will fall next?  81,181?  160,099? Or a different year entirely?
  • Whenever it is, will that guy be seeing me then, too?
  • The Jewish Calendar makes no friggin’ sense.

Hmmmmm.  Since that last photo involved some math, this post is taking longer than I expected.

Maybe I should wrap this up.  I want to celebrate my only chance at this once-in-a-lifetime event.

But there are soooo many images, out there.

How about this? I’ll show you some more, and you can supply your own thoughts:

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I especially like that last image, because now I know I’m not alone in my spelling mistakes.

In my image search, I also ran across some videos, and I want to to include one. It’s difficult to choose, but here it is, from my home town (and thanksgivukkahboston.com):

Before I end this post, just one more thing.

My title — A Once in a Lifetime Day — doesn’t just apply to today.

It applies to all our days.

I give many thanks today, for my family, for my friends, for my home, and for all my readers.

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* I found this image here, for which I give thanks.

** I found this image here, for which I give thanks.

*** I found this image here, for which I give thanks.

**** I found this image here, for which I give thanks.

***** I found this image here, for which I give thanks.

****** I found this image here, for which I give thanks.

******* I found this image here, for which I give thanks.

******** I found this image here, for which I give thanks.

********* I found this image here, for which I give thanks.

********** I found this image here, for which I give thanks.

*********** I found this image here, for which I give …. you know.

Categories: humor, personal growth | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | 25 Comments

Day 277: Very Unique

My son and I, who are both a little snobby about grammar, often bemoan the use of the term “very unique.”

We say, “Unique means one of a kind!  How can something be very one of a kind?”  And we sneer a little bit, verbally and facially. (That’s how grammar snobs are.)

So why did I use that term, “Very Unique,” for the title of this blog post?

Well, I’ve been thinking, more than usually this week, about my own uniqueness.

It’s true that each one of us is unique.  We don’t need this guy (or anybody else) to tell us that:

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(Although, that can help, sometimes.)

So, yes, each of us is unique, but I may be a little more unique than most. That’s because (as I’ve blogged about before, this year), I have a very unusual heart.  I have Congenitally Corrected Transposition of the Great Arteries.

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After I first found out, at age 27, that I had a heart like that, I remember having a conversation with my mother about it, in the hospital cafeteria.

I said to her, “So, my aorta and pulmonary arteries are switched.  That, by itself, would have been very, very bad for me, at birth. However, my heart also has another very, very bad mistake.  The ventricles are switched, too. So my blood goes to all the right places.”

I paused, for the punchline.

“Mom, for years, you have been telling me that ‘two wrongs do not make a right.’  I guess NOT.”

If my memory serves me well, my mother looked at me and said, “Oh, Ann!”  (If my memory serves me well, my mother said that on other occasions, too.)

So, what’s my point, today?

Here’s one:  Of all the people in the world, I should be the MOST forgiving of mistakes. I am, literally, living proof that two giant mistakes are better than one.

So maybe I’ll remember that, the next time I beat myself up about some mistake.

My original intent, in writing today’s post, included presenting some hard data about how very unique my heart actually is. So here are some numbers, from The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia website:

CCTGA is a rare heart defect. Only 0.5 to 1 percent of all people with heart defects have CCTGA. This means there are about 5,000 to 10,000 people in the United States with this condition.

I guess that IS a  pretty small group.  (Although —  as with everything — I guess it depends on how you look at it. I wouldn’t want to have all the people with hearts like mine over for a party, any time soon.) (And yet, who knows? Maybe that would be do-able, too. We could always order out, for pizza.)

I still haven’t made my originally intended point, in writing this blog post today.

Here it is:  Yes,  I am very unique. The chances of somebody being born with my kind of heart is (conservatively) approximately 10,000/314 million*.

However, you are very unique, too.

Here’s some math about THAT (quoted from Ali Binazir’s website)**:

Scientists calculate the probability of your existing as you, today, at about one in 400 trillion.

All this math is making my head hurt, right now.  But I believe I am correct in this:

My very-uniqueness is negligible, compared to the very-uniqueness of each of you, reading today.

As a matter of fact, what are the chances of YOU reading this blog post, written by ME, right now?

Now, my head REALLY hurts.

But let’s just say I’m very grateful, for all of it.

Thanks to Fred Rogers, Ali Binazir, and every very unique person, reading right now.


  • 314 million is the 2012 population of the U.S. (The up-to-the-minute U.S. census numbers are unavailable today, October 4, 2013, because of the U.S. government shut-down.)

** Thanks to Google, as usual, for helping me find this.

Categories: personal growth | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , | 67 Comments

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