Truth be told…

Today I was watching TV and a character had said “I can’t lie, you can see it in my body language” That sentence could be me saying it. This reminded me of a story from when I was in 4th grade. A huge lie, that lead to me becoming extremely honest through out the rest of my life. I am going to share this story with you. One to get it off my chest and two because its hilarious. I have always been extremely embarrassed about this story, so I thought why not share it with the world of blog readers and set myself free right?

I grew up in a very Catholic, Italian/Irish family in a suburb of Philadelphia. We were forced to go to church every Sunday as well as go to Catholic school. My family was pretty poor, so I only attended up until 4th grade. In Fourth grade I wasn’t cool, popular, smart, funny or any of those things. I was pretty reserved and a loner (or so I think so). I for some reason decide to concoct a lie to one of my friends that spread like wild fire through out the entire school. The lie was this; My uncle was marrying Taylor Dayne. Yes that Taylor Dayne the 80’s pop singer of such hits as “Tell It To My Heart” and “Love Will Lead You Back”. I have no idea why I decided to do so, but I did. This lie hit the rumor mill, and before I even knew what happened everyone had believed my lie. Let me interject and say that this is the way my memory serves, I am unsure if people really believed me or not, but it seemed like they did.

One day I was at school, it was near the end of the school year and the teachers were asking kids what they were doing for the summer. Everyone decided to mention the wedding I would be attending  with Taylor Dayne, and were curious as to the details. The teacher called me up in front of the classroom and told the class the lie. I was stuck standing there in front of my peers about to produce an even larger lie. I went on about how my uncle was the coolest and how I can’t wait to meet Taylor. I felt like a hero, a legend, and best of all I was popular! It was the first time in my life that I felt cool. I felt like I belonged. I loved every minute of it too.

One day after school had ended an older girl, Gina, whom I had kinda known asked if I wanted to hang out. Of course I said yes and we walked back to my house. I have no idea why I thought it was a good idea to bring her to my home, filled with people who actually know the truth, but I did anyway. We walked into my house and hung out for a bit. Then my mom came in and started talking with us. The first thing the girl said to her was “So how exciting about your brother marrying Taylor Dayne!” At this moment, my heart dropped. I knew I was caught. If I could go back in time and watch, I bet my face would have been priceless. Sadly, my mom didn’t have my back, she laughed and said “What are you talking about? Melissa is lying to you.” I was crushed. I knew this would spread like wildfire and I would be ousted from my society of Catholic school kids. And it did. Everyone knew right away. I got a lot of phone calls and snarky looks whenever I saw those people. Luckily for me my family got extra broke and I had to switch schools. It was a godsend to not have to go back there and face those people.

Through the years after the “big lie” I still harbored embarrassment. I recall going to high school and hearing some kids from Catholic school were going to be there, and I was scared. Luckily nobody ever brought it up to me, until I was a grown adult. My cousin, Nikole,  had seen some of her friends from high school, (she went to Catholic high school) and they were all hanging out. One of the girls, Gina, had heard Nikole mention my name. Gina said to Nikole “Melissa Culbertson is your cousin? She’s that girl who said your uncle was marrying Taylor Dayne.” That brought all those feelings right back. I was mortified yet again, knowing that these people still remember and still judge me on this lie I told as a 4th grader.

So today marks the day that I am letting that go. I no longer am embarrassed or scared of the Taylor Dayne incident. I am proud of it! It made me an honest person who could never tell a lie, it would show in my body language anyway.

My visit to Griffith Park

Today I was out running errands with my cousin and my little dog, Sofia. Sofia has been suffering from heart problems over the past few months. Its been hard since we moved to Los Angeles from the redwoods mainly because of the temperature. She has always been affected by the heat, but Humboldt never got past 70 degrees, and if it did the trees provided much needed shade. Down here in LA that is not an option. LA is a desert, dry and hot, two things Sofia does not need. Last month I found out she has a slightly enlarged heart, a murmur and a lung issue. These issues have made it difficult for her to go outside and exercise.

So today we went out and were driving around and I found myself at Griffith Park. I have gone here once before in the dead of summer and it was sweltering hot. I just figured we could drive around and look for a shady area to chill out for a bit. I was pleasently surprised to find this cute little walk way with tons of trees and shading along side a small creek. Its funny because my cousin Steve just moved here from Philadelphia and had just mentioned how he misses creeks, and bam! there was one right next to us! We decided to stroll down this lovely walkway and see all the beautiful sites.

It really felt like we got transformed to a tropical paradise. I completely forgot that I was in Hollywood, and pretended to be in Maui, or even Jamaica. I later came home and looked up this magical place, and found out it was Ferndell Nature Museum. I love that I went an outside museum today.

I think I found my new solace.

Here is a great article from LAIst with pictures and all!

http://laist.com/2010/08/11/cool_walkings_fern_dell_in_griffith.php#photo-1

 

Total eclipse of the heart..

Someone told me today to set an intention while watching the sun be eclipsed, and it really got me thinking about myself. Don’t get me wrong, I think about myself and ways to improve myself all the time, but when its thrown in your face like that, its quite different. It made me ponder, what are my intentions? I feel like this topic is always on my mind, but to actually write a list and sit down with myself if quite different. It really made me think long and hard about intention itself.

The dictionary defines intention as” an act or instance of determining mentally upon some action or result.” So I set out to do just that. My list consists of the usuals; working out, eating better, mediation, making money, etc etc. I decided to think deeper into it and my cousin said it best “don’t be scared of your true potential”. Fuck did that sit with me. I realized that I have all these thoughts and ideas, but I am scared. I am scared of where I will go, and what I will do, because its all so different than anything I have experienced as of yet. I imagine myself on the top of a mountain with a glider on my back and I keep running towards the edge, and then quickly backing up and thinking it over again. Then I get annoyed with myself and decide to just jump, then run and do the same thing. I am awaiting the day when I just take the leap. I have no idea what is keeping me from flying, but I am determined to break free and fly.

Lets fly.

 

Opening my 3rd Chakra

When I moved into my new apartment in Hollywood I met my new neighbors H & K. They were two girls, one H who is around the same age as me, the other the age of my roommate. I was delighted by the fact that I had cool girls living next door and hoping that one day we would all get to hang out and I would have a new friend in LA.

After talking with H for a while, I learned she was a practicing Buddhist. She told me of how her “church” gets together and chants. Automatically I felt excited about that. I always had the feeling that I should be chanting, but never really knew how to start. I have started chatting OM but I knew there was something more. So yesterday I was chatting with H and she told me she was joining her other friend to chant today, and I was invited if I wanted. I accepted the offer and got excited about my new awakening to be had.

This morning I woke up peppy and ready to go chant with my new friends. We walked into this woman’s house in Beachwood Canyon and chatted a bit about their religion. I never really thought of mediation or chanting as religious, even though it is. I was raised Catholic and that was always too religious for me, so I guess Ive trained myself to think this is different; its not.

This religion is religious. They read from a bible, they have priests, they have a leader (they call president) and they pray to pictures. Its very interesting to me on how people can argue and have so much hate over religion, when its all the same shit. But thats for a different day…

So I got this book to read out of called The Lotus Sutra. It had a bunch of words and symbols Ive never seen before. We chanted together for 5 minutes, and I tried to sing along, but couldn’t keep up with their brisk and practiced pace. So I decided to listen and be present and just meditate with them. They stopped after about 5 minutes, and went on to read from the book. Afterwards they went back and started chanting again. This time I could follow along and actually felt the benefits immediately. I could feel the vibration of my voice as well as theirs. It was as if we all became one together. Our tones matched as well as using singing bowls. I loved how much I felt connected at that moment. I even kept going longer than the two girls, and was asked to stop. I was lost in the music and energy flow.

I went back home and decided to read a yoga magazine and keep myself in that vibration, but grew very tired all of a sudden. I couldn’t stay awake and fell back asleep for 2 hours and could barely pull myself together to wake up. It was as if I was under a spell or something. I finally snapped out of it, and felt like myself again.

Overall I do feel the benefits of chanting through out today and really enjoy this feeling. I was invited to go back on Friday when there is a larger group and chant for 2 hours. I am going to go check it out, and will report back to you, my reader.

Is this a dream?

I cant believe that I actually live in Hollywood. Its weird because its been something I have been planning for so long, but it never felt real until now. I finally packed up the rest of my stuff from Humboldt and brought it to my new house. After I got in last night, I unpacked a bit and made the place feel a bit more homey. Today my cousins and I went to Malibu today to go chill out and enjoy the sun. Its been like 80 degrees down here! Wild! 100 percent the opposite of Humboldt during January. I couldnt be more pleased. I am gonna add some new pics I took while I was out and about. Hope you enjoy them!

Malibu Sunset
It wasnt the best sunset, but it was mighty pretty....

 

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