Almost 50 Years Ago, We Landed on the Moon

It’s July, roughly around the halfway mark for the calendar year. I tried poking about on the Internet, but there’s nothing cute-sy anyone says about July. (Other than maybe Ju-lied to me :P ) So I looked for random facts, and I found this one: in my grandparents’ generation, and likely the one of anyone reading this blog, humanity landed on the Moon. The exact date of the moon landing was July 16, forty-six years ago.

That blew my mind! Our species, despite all its inclinations to destroy itself only because we can mentality, managed to collectively pool resources into a common good to get homo sapiens (as well as canis familiaris, just to name another species. Man’s best friend indeed) into space. Space exploration funding’s been drastically reduced since this monumental achievement, and I suppose maybe a younger version of myself would have wanted to be an astronaut if I would have known it was an option.

Another random fact: This is a kind gesture the White House can give you: some Presidential Greetings. As a kid who’s a first-generation immigrant on one (possibly both, depends on who’s keeping track) this is a really neat way for the White House to engage with its constituents. In this increasingly digital world, it feels nice to receive paper mail and not just bills mixed in with the junk mail.

I decided to order one for my grandparents, to celebrate their fiftieth wedding anniversary. It’s a milestone that they couldn’t have known they’d get to when they said their “I dos” and one which both my partner and I would need to reach eighty years of age to accomplish ourselves. I can only hope God gives us that many years to live out.

100th Day Challenge: Completed

After one hundred days of positivity, the question remains: Am I suddenly a more positive individual? My honest answer is it all depends on what I’m talking about.

The person that I am today had to go through a lot of struggle, and for the most part I’ve come to peace with my past. Everyone has to, otherwise they’re forever weighted down by it. At some point, you pick your battles, lest we exist in a world where every battle is literally one of life or death.

I’ve heard that it takes about two weeks for a habit to form (sorry I can’t link to any study off the top of my head) and it held true here, the first two weeks were the most difficult for me and I kept wanting to give up and focus on everything that had gone wrong. As a law school student, it can feel at times like your brain is basically learning to expect the worst and then accept being pleasantly surprised when things don’t fall apart. Especially because of grading curves, and knowing that you’re surrounded by peers who are equally motivated to pursue this career path.

It didn’t magically become easier overnight, though, but sometime after two weeks it did become easier to focus on the fact that this was a long-term goal, and the only person holding me accountable would be me. Sure, family and friends my like or re-tweet something on social media, but as far as disappointment goes, it would all fall on my shoulders.

The end result is one where I now want to do anther 100 days challenge. Any suggestions? I’m thinking of trying either a doodle a day, or a photo a day. Not sure which, or whether something else will be what I try out next,

What's it thinking?

What’s it thinking?

Poems in January, Walks in June

Summer Blooms.

It’s June, and even in this California drought, the local flora are thriving. The longer summer days just seem to make the plants so happy. As Sartre once said, “To read a poem in January is as pleasant as to take a walk in June.”

It’s also nearly the completion of a hundred days of positivity challenge I decided to do, well, close to one hundred days ago. The gist of it was to write down one positive thing you’d experienced for one hundred days. Since popular science says it takes about two weeks for something to become a habit, I did notice earlier on in this challenge that I was looking for the silver lining more than I used to before starting it.

It’s not like every day was made better because I knew I had to find one positive thing to attribute to it, but even fairly mediocre or terrible days were balanced out by being able to remind myself that it wasn’t in fact the end of the world. There will always be stumbling blocks in life, and it’s easy to get frustrated by them. I found that it became easier for me to set it aside, and try to focus on what I did have going for me as I invested more time in this challenge.

It also happened that I got engaged during this challenge (at the end of May/June 1st, to be precise) and while that decision had been in the works for a while, it was amazing to see the outpouring of well wishes from both of our friends and family members. Now I’m just hoping I won’t become a bridezilla in the process of getting to the altar.

May you have good days ahead!

The cobwebs were also deserted by this point.

The cobwebs were also deserted by this point.

My, how the time just flies. Dear anyone reading this, I am so very sorry to want to post more and yet only being able to churn something out on a monthly basis, if that. I did marketing for a living before law school, before I was working at start-ups, you’d think I’d know a thing or two about brand retention and producing brand loyalty.

The ego is such a terrible creature to make one’s point of pride. A long time ago, I made peace with what my first name would be, and left the rest to be a subject for posterity. Anyone who has met me knows me to be a woman of my word, which is a rare trait, just as nowadays it is tough to find a true gentleman who is willing to honor his word. It’d been bothering me for a while, I couldn’t quite put a finger on it, and then I realized – my voice as a Liz shines forth when I write; which differs so strongly from my voice when I write in legalese, or for prose, or for whatever.

As someone who’d earned a degree in Political Science when it was still a science offered at my alma mater, I know I fell into it at SCU after deflecting from the real sciences because I’d been tired of hearing “You’re Not Welcome Here” for years. What did it matter whether it was because I was female, young/old, of an ethnicity coding as Non-White, I’d been told repeatedly things like “You can’t wear lipstick and be a serious scientist” or “You’ll stop wanting this career when you have babies” or “People like you don’t really want to do science work” such that I quit it and decided to go the legal route instead.

Fast forward to last week, where I had the worst interview I’ve ever been on. It was a panel interview with three older men (mid-forties was the youngest) where at some point in the interview process they’d made me uncomfortable because their first line of questioning revolved around the fact that I wasn’t wearing jewelry. I fell apart because I couldn’t point out to them that as a person sitting in the hot chair (do you remember your last interview? How nerve-wracking it was? Only to find out no, you didn’t get the job?) I couldn’t readily point out that they were making me very uncomfortable. There’s not really a good way to break it to someone in an interview that yes, I am hearing your shushed whispers about me not having “a good fit” and then going on about how it was based on how I wasn’t forthcoming on whether I was married or single. As it’d be easier to deal with me if they knew whether I was married and planning on having more children, or single and being a government burden. Ouch.

That was the how the worst interview I ever had, in which I ultimately just walked out on, went. What’s the worst that’s ever happened to you?

April Showers

Tulip bulbs peeking up, this is a standard “before” photo.

It’s about a week before finals start, and while Spring semester always feels easier, it’s deceptive. However caught up you might feel after spring break, you’ll find yourself in the last week of class, feeling dazed and confused. It’s how I felt last semester, and am feeling right now as well.

In part I think it’s because law school is sort of like high school all over again: you have lockers, you have cliques, and the uncertainty of where your life will take you (well, that’s how I felt in high school, but I graduated still on the wait-list of several colleges). Whereas with the college graduation, there’s a certain expectant finality with it, a law school degree doesn’t carry that same eager tension. Instead, there is the ever looming doubt about whether this degree was even a good choice.

Law school hasn’t been easy for me, but then again, life hasn’t been easy for me, either.

Somehow, though, along the way I found a way to bloom. To fight the darkness of uncertainty, a person needs to learn how to embrace their inner light. No one can change the circumstances of their birth, but anyone can change how their life is lived.

Gardening is something I have mixed feelings about, both because it’s my father’s line of work and one that’s a stereotypical notion of my people’s usual occupation. It was always something I enjoyed, though, seeing how with time a stretch of land could be gradually transformed with knowledge of the terrain and the critters that call it home.

I turned to gardening as an outlet both because I enjoy seeing a living thing grow under my care, and I just enjoy being out-of-doors. California, even in the midst of a drought, is a very green area. Hundred year old redwood forests are all along the coast, and while technically the area I live in is considered semi-arid desert, we’re close enough to the Bay to get some humidity. Knowing this, I’m trying my best to keep certain plants that prefer humidity alive.

This tulip seems to be doing pretty good, it’s been growing for about a month now (see picture below):

And now, the “after picture.

I don’t know why one bulb is growing so much faster than the other. It may be that they’re spaced too closely together, but I’m not sure. Any ideas, anyone reading this?