I am a self-professed weirdo. I’m someone who doesn’t like the notion of being normal at any given point throughout my day or even my life for that matter.
I realize it’s been ten days since my last entry. I’ve been one tired and busy woman as of late, with Ravensrealm, work, and more work, and reading a few books here and there.
I’ve started a new job in the last couple of weeks, which has eaten up my spare time after my shifts at IHOP are over. At least, the second job is doing so on the days I’m scheduled. I’ve started work at JCPenney’s, and it’s been quite the interesting experience. I’m in the women’s department (I wanted Sephora, but then a lot of people want the Sephora department – who wouldn’t? You get to work with makeup), and I’ve never been one to be much for clothing. My tastes have often geared towards jeans and t-shirts, mainly because I like jeans, and I like buying novelty t-shirts. If not the super casual look, then I’ve leaned towards the medieval styles – tunics, leggings, corsets. There is often a problem for me when it comes to buying clothes, however. Jeans and t-shirts are more in my price range than the medieval style clothing and are more accessible. (I miss this store called Enchanted Knights – it was in the Grand Traverse mall many, many years ago, and closed that location, but they had pirates shirts and poets shirts for sale.) I’ve never really been excited for clothing before, but I’m seeing things that I like and that I would definitely wear in a work place situation. ^_^ (For meet and greets and conventions, I either intend to be in cosplay or in medieval-style clothing. Because I like the idea, and I’m weird that way.)
Of course, because I am a weirdo in my own right, I’ve noticed the novelty pajamas JCPenney has. All are Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer themed . . . and they have adult onesie pajamas. At first, I was turned off, but the more I think about it, the more I want the Rudolph pajamas because, damn, now they’re adorable! I’m torn between wanting to wear them on Christmas Day (my goal for Christmas this year is to not work at all, stay at home, stay in either a pair of fuzzy pajama pants, fuzzy socks, and tank top/fuzzy pajama top or the Rudolph adult sleeper, and play Star Ocean: Till the End of Time for most of the day. Hey, #LifeGoals, man!) or the Christmas two-piece pajama set I’ve already purchased for myself that has a pair of red and white striped fuzzy bottoms and a green fuzzy top with jingle bells, a pug, and the phrase “Bah Hum Pug”. Yes, I realize I can do both so please stop giving me ideas, my friends!
I’ve been quite determined to make some changes in my life. For the past year, I’ve been feeling quite exhausted. Five days a week, I’m up around 4 am because my shifts at IHOP start at 6 am. With the exception of when I lived in Louisiana, I’ve been doing this for two years straight, and this is where I need one of my changes. I give mad kudos to anyone and everyone who can get up at 4 am every day, not just for two years, but five, ten, twenty. I’ve had co-workers say, “I don’t know how you do it” to me when they realize what time I get up to be to work. While for me it isn’t difficult, it’s draining. I have mornings where I want to call in just so I can stay in bed a little while longer (but I don’t because I have bills to pay, and I need money to pay my bills and to buy the things I want and need).
After two years, my final day with IHOP is this upcoming Sunday. I’m not going into the reasons why I’m leaving. There are many, and I’m not spending twenty paragraphs or so going into each and every single reason for leaving. This is not the forum for that, and it’s a bridge I also refuse to burn. Mind you, the goal is to move forward, to keep learning and growing as a person and in Spirit. There is always that part of me that craves to learn, to be challenged, and to keep moving forward. That’s why I’m loving JCPenney right this moment as it’s outside of my comfort levels, it’s challenging to me (and nerve-wracking, too), and there is the opportunity to learn, to grow, and to move forward. I know I won’t be able to do everything on JCPenney alone so I will seek other work to supplement, but it’s time for me to move on from IHOP. I have loved that place, I love the customers who have come in and always brightened my day, be it with a joke or just by being there, and I will be forever grateful for the experiences and confidence I’ve obtained from IHOP. I will definitely not be forgetting my time there anytime soon. I have a lovely scar on my left arm from a really super hot plate. At one point, the burn looked like a Dachshund with its head lifted up. It still kind of does at the same time it also looks like the Starfleet logo from Star Trek. The mark has been on my arm since Labor Day. It’s so very slowly fading.
And, yes, a lot of this does have to do with the fact that I’ve turned 40. I’ve had a lot of people tell me they would never guess that I’m 40. I don’t look 40. I don’t act 40. In this lifetime, I’ve never been 40, and a part of me has always been about defying expectations. I’ve never pursued an office job where I sit in a cubby corner with a cubby desk for eight hours a day. The idea of such a job when I was a child and was a teenager simply never appealed to me. I don’t care for the societal expectations that, maybe once upon a time were great for the vast majority of people, have become downright negative and harmful. With very few exceptions in my adult life, I’ve always worked. And I’ve often pursued what I’ve wanted, what I’ve known to be best for me. When little things here and there pop up that confirm what I’ve always known, it’s a joyous moment that’s also a bit painful but the pain comes from the overwhelming feeling that I am in the right place, that I am on the right path.
Earlier on Facebook, a poem called Valhalla Calls appeared in my feed, and it moved me in ways that I can’t even begin to describe. In my Heathenism/Paganism/Wiccan path, I’ve found the Norse gods, I’ve found them to be quite amazing, and, when I look at what I’ve been able to read of the existing lore, I’ve found myself questioning what’s happened and trying to understand it. On a spiritual level, I dig deeper, and I uncover answers, at least for myself, that no one else can answer for me. It’s challenging, it’s painful at time, but it’s also very rewarding.
Now, mind you, I will not insist that my path is the right path for everyone. I know way too many people of different faiths and backgrounds to even insist that my path in Norse Paganism is the only path that must be followed. For starters, it’s a lie, at least in my book. The best path for anyone to follow is the one that, when you question something you’ve learned and you’ve gained a better understanding of why something occurred and it only strengthens your faith more, allows you to grow as an individual on all levels. You may not be able to see everything on your spiritual path, but you walk forward with your eyes open and your heart filled with wonder. The best path for anyone to follow is the one that leaves you feel closer to whoever it is you believe in and teaches you to strive for your own higher good and the higher good of your communities.
One thing that has helped me and inspired me as of late to keep pursuing both my career choice and my spiritual path is a book, The Rules of Magic by Alice Hoffman. I know it isn’t in the realm of my usual genre, science-fiction and fantasy, but, once I learned it was the story of Franny and Jet Owens, the aunts from Practical Magic (I’ve watched the movie and loved it – I will always envision Franny and Jet as Stockard Channing and Dianne Wiest), I was interested. Extremely interested. I’d loved the movie of Practical Magic so stepping outside of my usual range for reading material is no big deal for me.
I. Love. This. Book. I love the message that Alice Hoffman conveys in this story about love. Love is difficult, love can lead us to ruin, but it’s always best to love more instead of less. Very few books have moved me the way this book moved me. It’s going to be on my book shelf for a long time to come.
I’ve also read the latest Magnus Chase book, and the rumor is it’s the last in the series. While I love the series, I’m also very grateful to hear that The Ship of the Dead is the last installment. My overall complaint is that Rick is just too cookie cutter in his approach with his characters. His main characters do grow and develop, but secondary characters remain the same, be it in the Percy Jackson series or in Magnus Chase. And I’ve noticed a huge difference between the Greek and Norse gods in my own research alone. I love Rick, I’ll keep his books in my personal library as well, but no more Magnus Chase. At least for me.
The next week promises to be quite busy for me. The weekend is pretty much booked between both jobs, and then I head to Michigan to see my dad for a short period of time, get the rest of my belongings and come back to Tulsa. I’ll try to write something during this time, but, if you see nothing, at least you’ll know why.
There is no rest for the wicked and the weird.
Have a safe and wonderful weekend, my friends!