Connected or Not Re-hash 2019

Welcome to the 21st Century

Here we are, now, in the 21st Century.  My son likes to remind me that we are living in the Information Age, although Generation X is still stunned or confused that this is what followed the Space Age.

Interaction through Media

Once in a while, here at the blog, you may have read about the question of how interactive is the public media?  I mean in the old days we had TV and Radio and newspapers and magazines go way further back in time to fulfill some of the same thing: long distance communication.  I should probably not overlook telegrams, but for some reason I don’t feel I really understand how that really worked in society.

Now, with the Internet, some of how we interact is more modern but similar to that level.  To some degree, blogs or posting at public forums, or semi-public forums is interactive but not in a private or personal way.

Meanwhile, most of us are also navigating interacting in ways that are much more personal and private online.

Some private stuff is both very personal and impersonal such as shopping and advertising.

Companies have grown so competitive for the attention that they are trying to cause potential customers to develop ‘addictive’ behavior patterns or abnormal attachments to checking mobile devices and streams of information.

Regarding information there are the two following important sayings:  “Garbage in / garbage out”  and “Knowledge is power”.   Misinformation, control of information, censorship, propaganda, free press, freedom of information act in the USA, ….the need to sort and to organize information….The need to not be shoved off of the right track when doing research or seeking high quality answers by “Distracticons” ….

Bleep bleep…The obvious

For many people born since 1980, it has become second nature to navigate reasonably well through thick streams of information at least as comfortably as people can handle medium density urban traffic.

Online is not all the same.  There are venues in which interactions are and can be personal.  It is possible to have privacy online, but in general, online activities are like meeting out in public places.   Like being ‘out in public’ there are lots of different ways to be online in not so private spaces.  Instead of this being or feeling bizarre, for many of us, it is almost so well understood that it is difficult to say anything about it.

Really Connected or just imaging things?

The reality is that personal connections that last normally require multiple modes of online communication or role clarity.  I have met real people who: in person, in public settings such as a group social club meal at a restaurant or group meeting over at my house: divulged that they had met their ‘significant other’ or actual spouse via dating sites on the Internet.

I know of friends who did manage to stay friends long-distance thanks to real-time live interactive communication online and engaging in online activities together.

I also know of people who carefully only have online connections with people they are also involved with in person, whether school or clubs.

There are people who don’t consider any relationship that occurs online to be ‘real’.

Millions of us have learned new knowledge or skills through online activity.

Me, personally

For years I used online communication groups intending to learn more about the writing and publishing field and to make contacts in the industry and to help my career progress.

In truth, I do still hope to test and learn that keeping in touch via the Internet with people I have spent time with in person but then spent some years or months far away can enable us to reunite in person and to live our relationship forward in time, with less time consumed by the need to catch up on what happened to either of us in the past….thanks in part to having found out about most of the major stuff online.

Possibly Typical

In my own case, I suspect that I am “just like everyone else” in how I react to online activities.  Like in personal life: context matters.

Some months, it seems like I am only sustained by my Facebook friends and other times I am terrible to them, barely read some of their posts and would not invite them over to my place were they in town.

Other times, I feel one or another of them succeeds in helping me do something important locally, despite the distance, and thanks to being friends who communicate using the Internet.  It is true that some of the same people also ‘harsh on me’ by totally blowing me off when they come to where I live and finally could get together in person.  Being treated that way really makes me doubt whether or not there is any real connection to our online connection.

I suspect, that a lot of other people also feel this way.  In truth, most of us can get like that also about “in person relationships” based in part on how we know others; how we treat each other; how we react to each other.

The 21st Century

In truth, we are still pretty early into this new century.  I think that by 2050 we, as humans, will have worked out ‘how it is going to be’ with these technologies.  What is a short term thing, and what is going to really last, for instance.

I admit that we may not know all of the new technologies that are going to stick around long term, but I think we are all agreed that the Internet and the PCs and laptops are sticking around long term.  Right now, I believe that 100 years from now, people will be as used to them as we have become to the train.

Be that as it may, I still love watching or reading about events in the 1800s when the trains, the telegraph and the rare automobile were really exciting new technologies.

Space & Information Ages

So far, here’s what’s happened that I am most aware of:

  •  It is possible to get YouTube videos and livestreaming from the International Space Station, but still seems bad that the space shuttle program isn’t still going on.
  •  I was able to get photographs sent back to Earth by a probe that landed on Mars within 24 hours of when the probe took the photos.  Pretty effing cool.
  •  SpaceX is one of the companies developing what in the Dragonball Z cartoon TV show was done in the imaginary realm as Capsule Corp.: Reusable rockets.
  •  Multiple agencies and organizations are working on getting us a real base on the planet Mars.
  •  There is considerable scientific research  going into how plants can and cannot grow in low gravity due to the legitimate need to produce ecosystems on any planets for long-term colonisation.

There’s more of course: I invite your comments on how this blog post is written or on the contents.

Days and Daze

Days

We start out days by waking up.  Often we get lots of indication of ourselves for any given day.  Not every day has been the same.  Lots have to do with major stages of life.  Health has a great deal to do with it; the next question always seems to be “Am I well rested?” or “Am I in the middle of a dream cycle?”

A lot of adults have learned to think in terms of “working days” ….contrasted with “days of not working”; as it turns out “days or working” and “days of not working” are both more complicated than each phrase initially suggests.

Then of course, there is working days rather than working nights and weekends.

Days 2

Waking may occur before, during or after dawn.  Personally, my preference is to wake right around dawn.  That means during the Winter I’m “off” my natural cycle or sleeping in late enough to get into trouble with many others.

People who cope with working nights normally wake up after dawn, well after it in fact.  Waking up well rested,  well adjusted to working 2nd or 3rd shift with 3 to 4 hours to go before the children get home from school, another few hours before leaving for work….having seen the spouse in the morning; a spouse who will be entrusted with the children once off to work.

Waking up late with a hangover realizing that it also means one has failed to show up at work on time while horribly lonely is a radically different experience.

Days 3

Days can be almost intolerably long or can zoom by at a frantic pace, loaded with awareness and business the entire time.

One great question I invite you all to answer in the comments section:  what makes a day seem longer to you?

The reason I ask is that I have found that sometimes the longest days are when nothing is going on, but other times it seems to be caused by having a little too much going on.

In my own life, so far, I used to say the longest year of my life was the year I was pregnant: I think it’s because I kept asking myself how far along I was every 3 minutes or else it was because the foetus quadrupled in size and complexity every 5 minutes.

Daze

Boredom, illness, sleep….Trapped in some hellish job or in an entire lifestyle that just feels like a trap.  Any of these may cause a daze.

“Dazed and confused for so long its all true: wanted a woman, never bargained for you…”

Late at night, overtired and intoxicated at the same time while listening with poor concentration to someone talking about an uninteresting subject.  This may be experienced as a daze.

Overwhelmingly happy, just married and at the reception the daughter-father dance went incredibly well.  The best man is holding up the groom, as the groom is dazed by the surreal stunning beauty of his now-wife.  His now father-in-law has said something kind about him during his speech which seems like a definite miracle after having felt despised by the same man the whole time he courted the woman who is now his wife.

abstract art background blur

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

Wedding Jewelry

Wedding Jewelry Take 1

Most people, especially women, love wedding jewelry.  The diversity of style, color, stones and price and everything they symbolize is so impressive, beautiful and romantic.

I am no different in this respect.

The Sad Truth

So far in my life, despite having married, I have only about 9 years of experience being legally married and it took 3 different men, just to get me those precious 9 years and to stick me with short term marriage instead of being married for over 20 years now as intended when I got married.

Making Proper Use of This Information

Despite everything sad about how I came into the information, I want to make some happy use of various observations I have made from having spent some time married and some time not married about wedding jewelry.

Observations

  • Some people believed to be friends and members of the opposite sex disappear the moment they see wedding jewelry.   That definitely tells you something.
  •  Wedding jewelry is a great ‘ice breaker’ for conversations.
  •  There are people who have more respect for women who are wearing wedding jewelry.
  •  If you are ever seen wearing wedding jewelry but then go even one day without wearing it, people will wonder whether it means you are having marital problems or about to get divorced, even if it is that you are going to work out, and the ring doesn’t fit whenever your hands get hot and puffed up, or you are going to be doing any type of work that might endanger your precious ring.
  •  Wedding bands can be cheap and to the point.
  •  Wedding jewelry can both protect the wearer against unwanted sexual / romantic interest, and can be depressing because it makes potentially interested persons unwilling to even try to have a friendly and harmless 5 minute live chat.

Observations 2

These are about going without wedding jewelry during one’s marriage.  This can occur for various reasons.  In this case, I am only going to write about dealing without wedding jewelry even when there is not definitive “marital trouble” instead of when going without the jewelry because there is a marital problem.

  •  There is no distinction made between your girlfriend or boyfriend and your wife or husband.  This can be soothing for couples who were together long before marriage and had honest respect for their romance.
  •  This can be troublesome in that people think your beaux or toy boy has not become your spouse, when really the relationship is more serious (in a good way) than others may have been led to believe.
  •  People, or single people, remain friendlier.  Bear in mind, that one of the observations is that the vast majority of ‘interest’ leads not to adultery but to 5 minutes of conversation at a workplace or means that someone will sit with you at lunch in the breakroom at work.
  • One may accidentally prevent friendships with other married people because neither they nor others saw the ring and tried to befriend you thanks to the fact that you are married; this is in contrast to the people to steered cleared of you once they saw the same thing.

Final Comments

In all seriousness, one should try to be aware of the intentions and influences of wedding jewelry and sensitivity to how wearing it, or going without it, may give certain messages.

Please be aware that despite my own failures I am a staunch supporter of intact families and good marriages.  True love, stable homes, families and finances are healthy for the entire society, are what God recommends and can make life quite nice.  I have been trying to get a permanent (50+ year long) partner since about age 17 years.  I am nearly 51 and have quite a past but not the stable past of “wow am I ever just still married for quite a while now…having crested over the Silver anniversary halfway point towards a 50th wedding anniversary.”

Rather than abuse my suffering, just enjoy the observations and make use of them in your own life; or post comments about your life and observations about wedding jewelry.

 

 

Maiden, Mother & Crone: mother > crone

Stages of Life (for women):  Although in the TV show Merlin they referred to the Triple Goddess, all they were referring to are the 3 main stages of adult female life: the maiden or young woman, next the mother which just means she’s older and has child/ren, then lastly the crone: normally menopausal and quite possibly grandchildren or at least old enough to have grandchildren and even adult grandchildren and great-grandchildren (old has several levels itself).

Today’s post is about later stages of the mother.  I’m nearly 51 years old and have an “adult child” rather than a child.  While still firmly middle aged based on an 85 year life span, maybe more or a little less, that’s about it….I’m as much older as a 30 year old as my 23 year old offspring is to a 3 year old….as much older as it takes a human to go from conception to adulthood.

At some point it dawned on me that for many people “middle age” is the longest period of life.  However, I’ve also met enough older people to see that youth may in fact be the shortest phase.  During youth and one’s 20s it really doesn’t seem like most of one’s life was just the warm up for the reality; the vast majority of life spent as an adult.

Teens & Perimenopause

What these 2 phases in life have in common are major hormonal fluctuations that can cause mood swings, behavioral and psychological changes or even personality changes.  Self-identification can also shift.  (In truth, pregnancy can be even more drastic but that’s a story for another day).

Both phases have everything to do with human reproductive power.

Differences

Teens develop into being able to be mothers and adults.  During perimenopause, we’re heading towards the exit door: been there, done that.  All finished with baby making, thanks so much.

During either phase it can seem like it isn’t just a phase, but it is.  Perimenopause lasts as long, or longer than being a teenager does.  Freaky, but true.

Changes

Whether or not something is a blessing, a curse or something else can depend on how it is interpreted.  Perhaps because I was single or due to religious beliefs/interest, when perimenopause struck me at age 46 years I at first believed that God had finally answered a prayer that I stop being tortured by intense sexual desire regardless of whether or not acting on it would be okay.  Right before I wrote this post, I read some other lady’s: married women may suffer new kinds of anxiety about how to keep her husband happy when she stops experiencing nearly as much sexual desire….Which was really nothing more than a plot by Nature to persuade us to engage in behavior liable to lead to babies and raising more people.

For my own sake, it really felt like a blessing…and really did just feel like I was no longer being tortured by built-in desires.  It did not make it so that I have absolutely zero sexual desire, responsiveness or interest but like I was no longer in chronic danger of being overwhelmed by intense energies that I struggled with for control over my own behavior during some of my life.  I hadn’t ever meant to either deny nor to make too much of sexual energies.  I didn’t find it that easy to keep the proper balance of them in relation to my own lifestyle for 30 years; then finally some relief.

It did make enough of a difference that I realized that had I still been married, it would have become about how to convince my husband that I still love him when instead of his lustful, passionate wife I was suddenly satisfied with a hug and trying to avoid sex….it seemed like a good husband might wonder if I were having an illicit affair and that explained the sudden lack of sexual interest.

No need to make babies = no need to feel horny.

I’m a fairly learned person, so I do recall reading that the great Athenian philosopher Socrates wrote that for men, the greatest gift of older age is being able to think straight because the cloudiness caused by sexual desire wanes.

But seriously folks, what else?

The adventure of perimenopause mainly means that 25 years of menstrual regularity suddenly became irregular.

The most shocking discovery was that those tiny daily panty liners are for older women more so than for 12 to 15 year old girls.  I never would have believed it until it started happening to me.

The first month I had a weird period I thought it was either a miracle from God or a type of witchcraft I hadn’t run into before.  By the 3rd month I realized that it was just Mother Nature….Since it began, some months are almost the same as when I was 30 but much of the time it is much less and lighter flow.

A lot of the time, my periods are only as much in an entire week as one day of heavy flow at ages 30 and 40.

Then, in my later 40s, for the first time since I’d gotten pregnant well over ten years earlier, I just didn’t menstruate.  That went on for a few months.  Right after I had concluded that I never would again, I did.

The last month of being 50 the big thrill on that front was that I menstruated in December for the first time since I was 47 years old.  Weird.

Benefits

Aside from not being tormented by excessive sexual desire with no husband, there have been a few other benefits of perimenopause: less fuss and filth and reduced expenses of feminine products.

For me personally, the greatest benefit has been an emotional evenness or reduced emotional reactivity that I really like.  It doesn’t mean that I don’t have any emotional reactions, but it is less drastic than when I was younger.  It is possible that this is only 20% the result of hormones and the rest is based on other factors, but I suspect that it is 99% hormonal changes, and only 1% any changes in personal character or personality.

Sorry if that doesn’t seem great to you; those are really all the benefits as far as I can tell so far.

Boxing Day 2018

Back to work already?

Today, while going about my business I came across some people who were already back at work after the holiday.  I was a little surprised by some of what they told me.

The reason I was surprised was simply because I am the kind of person who genuinely loves having time with relatives and friends at the holiday.  I’m sure I’m one of hundreds of millions of people who feel the same way.  However, I am happy to report that some of the people who were already back at work felt pretty okay or even better about being there.  It was just that I had expected that either they would feel as if they had to lie to me about it, or that most of the people who worked today would have been miserable about not having had more time to enjoy their relatives and friends.

Christmas Day

Due to my personal preferences and stage in life and spiritual interest, I actually spent almost the entire day on Jesus.  Again, I’m sure that my being actively oriented that way at the religious holiday commemorating Jesus’s birth is something that hundreds of millions of people around the world also did, but for me it was somewhat special because it was voluntary and I did it that much more than I have done most years so far in my life.

If you did to, I hope you felt wonderful about it.

Good wishes

This is just to wish you all well, and hope that you are either continuing to enjoy what Christmas does to your life and the lives of those you love, or that you are glad that the craziness has already passed you by.

Feeding Babies: Newborn to 12 mos.

About your newborn’s feeding

 

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Somebody probably told you, but your baby’s first few months will involve a purely liquid diet of breast milk and/or formula. Doctors recommend breast feeding your bbaby for the first 6 months but it is a choice. My mother did not breast feed at all, and I did but only for 6 weeks. I had thought I would for about 9 months. Some babies do for years. If there are no health concerns in your family line or where you live it is safer to use formula. If your child will be exposed to illnesses it is more important to breast feed because breast milk gives extra protection against disease. It just really does.
Your baby will live on a liquid only diet for the first few months. There are a number of signs that your baby may be ready for solid food. In the beginning it will be only to supplement formula or breast milk.

  • Signs of readiness for solid food
    When your baby has the following abilities and shows the following signs you can try solid food:
    1. Able to hold up their own head for significant periods of time – like hours rather than minutes.
    2. Able to sit up, to maintain an upright seated posture – or even ready to use a high chair.
    3. Starts to show interest in parents food.
    Does not push food gently placed in the front of the mouth back out the front of the mouth.
    4. Possibly teething
    May seem hungry despite receiving 8 to 10 feedings of liquid in a day.

Solid food
If you have not had the baby yet and your friends do not already have children then abandon your ideas about solid food. What is meant is actually food the consistency of apple sauce. On some level you already know this from having seen adverts for baby food on the shelves but as an adult who has not had children before it may seem insane and absurd. A sandwich or piece of fruit would be too much and way too difficult.
Luckily, one can both buy baby food and can make it home made if you have a blender or Cuisineart. One can blend strawberries, mangos, apples and so on to a thin enough consistency to be your baby’s first solid food. The big reason for this is the lack of teeth. The other reason is their sensitive and developing digestive systems. A little fruit and later on something related to rice or oats is enough. Carrots can be u but are more difficult to prepare.
Next level – with teeth
After your child gets half or more of the first set of teeth, you can begin serving them more ordinary food – what you thought of as solid food before you got into that whole baby food thing.

New Mother News

Emotions of Motherhood
There are many emotions associated with motherhood, in all stages. However, this is directed towards those women just getting started at being a mother. There is the baby, or the twins of course and there is you.
Where did everybody go?
What happens to you? Due to the lifestyle changes mentioned elsewhere in related articles, for some mothers, the biggest difficulties are going without work and feeling as if their friends vanish – or worse, like the new mother is now treated as if she does not exist. It can be very emotionally painful despite great joy over being a mother and even with the loving support of relatives – including a husband.
This problem is not insurmountable, but it can be a hum dinger when not psychologically prepared. If you go without work, then all the social relationships that went with it, vanish. You, the new mother, won’t miss any of the people who you didn’t like very much but will notice the difference. Without your own pay, learning to share money with your husband – if you hadn’t done it already, becomes vitally important to your and your baby’s survival. Kudos to you if you have wisely and sensibly married well and have an awesome personal life and are not running into this problem.
The truth is that a lot of women do, and the fact is, that it happened to me as well. I had not predicted it and did not know how to handle it. It was not that bad, but if I can help you as you adjust to being a mother, then I will be glad I wrote this.
Other Mothers
A lot of people drop out of your life once you become a mother. It may feel and be unfair. It might not trouble you half the time but then when you have a free afternoon and discover that you can’t afford to go anywhere unless your husband pays for you – you may feel stuck. Maybe you used to have money from your job. Maybe you do have money because you worked that out with your husband but then none of your former friends are available.
It is true, that for most new mothers, you have to find at least some other new mothers to socialize with.
Getting Out of the House
It is possible that you might work out a way to have a part time job that gets you out of the house while you spend most of the time with your baby. Mother and baby and mother and toddler groups abound – especially if you have the good fortune of living in the city, or in the residential part of the city or have a car and gas money.
Your New Life
Despite the challenge, most likely with time, you will adjust to being a mother. Some women find this to be so easy they don’t need to read this article. Others really need to read this article to know they are not alone in how they really feel even if and when overjoyed rather than sad about being a new mother.
For many women, it does involve just accepting that a lot of people won’t include you much for some years. You will probably be socially pressured to befriend women with a baby the same age as yours. It can be disturbing but often it works very well because you can talk about everything that matters while that is really how it is. I had one good friend who had a baby my age when I did and it helped a lot. Obviously, most women don’t automatically feel like best friends just because another woman has a baby the same age, but it can really work.
You and the baby can have a wonderful and rewarding relationship. The reality may not always live up to your own ideals about babies and mothers. A good family life can become a wonderful bastion of support and love. Feelings of being overwhelmed, as long as they do not occur too often are also normal.
You may feel very much like you are still you. For me, personally, retaining my sense of identity with my prematernal self was a big deal. I have met other women who told me their identity changed but they were happy with it that way. So, maybe you will feel like a whole new person – the flower blossoms on the bush and there is little resemblance to the previous stage of life.
You can learn to find ways to socialize, but that is easier if you live where there are people and it may help a lot if you have money, but there are ways to do it even when you don’t.
Motherhood is a ‘rest of life’ relationship, at least in most cases. Your baby will only be a baby for a year. You can remind yourself to enjoy what you love about it and fear not, your baby will outgrow whatever you don’t like about it. In all my life I have heard of only 1 exception to that; there was one girl who lived in the baby stage of development for 21 years. Don’t worry, that won’t happen to you.
Take heart, once you get the hang of being a mother, you probably wouldn’t want it any other way ever again, and you will be able to work and have friends and get your way at least some of the time even as you raise your baby. Be responsible and don’t give up.