The last couple of days have been very interesting for me. A lot of things have happened in my life, I've had a lot to take in. Some of it happy, some of it difficult, some of it incredibly surreal. Some of it so out of the ordinary for me, it's almost like the universe shifted, just a tiny bit, just enough to make a little space...For me. A tiny, little, surreal Jamie Lee space...
Surreal as in, WOW! Is this....CAN THIS BE, is it possible that this is really happening? What are the chances of this actually occurring? Things like this NEVER happen to me! Surreal like a dream...That's exactly how I can relate to you what I'm feeling....I can only describe this as a dream come true....Because it actually IS a dream come true, for me.
On Tuesday the 18th I posted the following blog at http://itsmejamielee.blogspot.com and put links to it on MySpace, FaceBook, Twitter and InTheRooms, just as I always do, asking people to read and let me know what they think. I have had an enormous response to this piece, so I hope you read and enjoy it as well. Authoring this piece IS STILL changing my life, which I will detail immediately following the blog itself.
Sooo, while on hiatus this past weekend, I stayed with a friend I've known for a few years. Despite the length of time we've known each other, we've never spent much one on one time together, at least not enough to get to know the little bits and pieces of one another that really make us the people we are, deep down.
I'm talking about the habits and beliefs one only sees when they look closely, when they are afforded the time, interest and attention span necessary to truly witness someone else...In the raw. Over the weekend there was definitely plenty of time, and I'm fairly certain I was under the microscope. After all, I'm a rare and interesting specimen, unique indeed! *wink wink*
Throughout the days, my friend repeatedly told me how much fun I am, and I often caught him watching me play and explore with a look of (what I interpreted to be) awe on his face. The kind of awe people get when they watch a child having fun playing with a string or a box, a sort of amusement at the simplicity of a child's pleasure, maybe even a bit of longing, a brief reminder of when life was so much easier. A wistfulness that things could be so simple for them again, perhaps.
All weekend long I let it all go. For the most part. There was a brief moment as I was reading some email when I was temporarily pulled back into the stresses that create walls in our lives. And as I felt my body tense up, my face get squinchy and tears well up in my eyes, I immediately fell into Child's Pose, a yoga pose of pure surrender, and I allowed myself to be held by Mother (Earth) until I could remind myself, "I am taking a break to take in what is..And not worry about what will be."
So I walked away from my email, separating myself from my electronic leashes. I'm learning how to be more present in my life. And with the exception of that situation, I spent the days and nights I was away listening to music constantly, dancing, singing, playing with my pups, photographing bugs, feeding and petting Horsey, admiring his strength and beauty, spoiling him with more carrots and oranges than I was suppose to give him.
I noticed tiny flowers and spent time examining them closely, noting their smallest characteristics. I ate fresh oranges from the same tree I searched for spiders, hoping to examine their beautiful webs, all the while allowing my hands and face to get sticky as I relished the sweet, intense flavor, thankful for the cool, refreshing nourishment of the citrus fruit. I always ache to feel the earth beneath my feet, so I walked around the yard barefoot, carefully since there were lots of thistles, and enjoyed the feeling of a small splinter piercing the flesh of my right food, it was refreshing to be reminded just how alive I am.
I played hide and seek with my friend, and tag..We had so much fun running away from each other, me yelling and screaming, both of us laughing, having tickle wars when we would catch one another. Of course the pups had to get involved, what fun would a game of tag be without even teams of 2 dogs and 2 humans? We boxed with Butchy and got besos from Bru and instigated leg biting between the two pups..To say the least, all 4 of us burned a lot of energy, and were in great spirits all weekend long.
On Saturday night, we returned to the city for a DubStep show at The Kava Lounge. This was (for the most part) the first time I have gone out to a club just to dance since being in recovery, actually, for well over a year. I have been so nervous that I would not connect to the music the same way, or enjoy it as much as I use to when I would go dancing high. On the way in, a guy my friend knew walked past and asked if we wanted to roll..Anything was possible, as it always is.
However, I spent this night drug free, danced for 3 hours straight. You couldn't have lured me away from the dance floor no matter what. I was having so much fun that even when my friend would step outside for a cigarette nothing could distract me. Social anxiety smocial anxiety..In this moment it just didn't matter. What I noticed was this: When I dance and I'm really feeling it, my eyes are closed most of the time, I laugh a lot, and I get really excited when the music oscillates.
Sunday upon returning to San Diego, my friend and I decided to get sushi for lunch. We went to Zensei, a sushi joint I really like, not far from my home in North Park. We had Miso Soup, a Spicy Tuna Roll and Caterpillar Roll, Seared Albacore Nigiri and something new to me....New Zealand Pearl White Tuna Nigiri.
As I was chewing the first piece of this new to me treat, my eyes got big and I pointed at my mouth while I said 'MmmmmHmmmmmmm!!!! MMMMMM!!!" and smiled the best I could, full mouthed and closed lipped. My friend, smiling, said something about how cute and obvious it is when I really enjoy something, sort of like a little kid.
When I swallowed my food, I said thank you..And briefly explained my thoughts on enjoying life to the fullest. Which went something(but not exactly) like this:
I want to experience everything in life with childlike awe and wonder. I want to truly enjoy every second as though I haven't been conditioned by society, I want to be amazed by what I'm experiencing, full of love, happiness and appreciation. Why shouldn't I? Why shouldn't anyone? It may, indeed, be the fountain of youth. Because we are only as old as we make ourselves out to be..Age is a matter of perception.
I don't care what the number game says, I want to live and love every second of life with childlike abandon.
Almost immediately after this post went live on my blog, I started receiving feedback. From every possible direction. And still am, I've had decent responses to my writing before, but never anything like this. People emailing me about it, commenting on the blog itself, commenting on MySpace, FaceBook and InTheRooms about it, instant messaging me, a friend I haven't spoken to in at least probably 7 years tweeted about how she was blown away by my post...I've had a few phone calls and texts...And even from a few new friends while out in public.
So awesome, so encouraging, I was just loving it, basking in it...And then on Wednesday morning, I got an instant message on InTheRooms...From one of the founders of the site itself..Much to my surprise. Here is a shortened account of what happened from there. This is where everything became, and still is, very surreal for me...
MC: I'm MC, one of the co founders of InTheRooms. I just checked out your blog...wanna get 10X the numbers you're getting now?
MC: Are you in recovery?
JmeLee: yes....and yes.
MC: Listen...you interested in doing a blog for us? Our Alexa is around 30K vs the 10Million you're at right now
JmeLee: yes, but i'm new at this blogging thing
MC: I like your style...it just needs to be chanelled better
JmeLee: what is alexa
MC: we can help. Alexa is a rating site. Go to www.alexa.com and type in the adress you want to check out. What would you like to write about? What's your passion?
JmeLee: it depends on the moment....i write a lot about life...like the blog called live life with childlike abandon.....it's getting a lot of attention, more than most
MC: I agree with you about the getting attention part. You're a natural! What are you in recovery from? It isn't listed
JmeLee: ...15 year meth addiction...clean for 1 year on the 5th of june
MC: Are you going to meetings?
JmeLee: no i go to an intensive holistic 2 year program here in san diego called shakti rising
MC: Cool! THAT's what you can write about!
JmeLee: it's awesome!
MC: Great! You can touch on whatever else is going on with you but we focus on the Holistic lifestyle and recovery...We would set you up in your own blog with some link backs to us and we help each other..I want our web design guy TDM to check this out and give me his ideas...so we're checking out your blog now...
MC: Ok, I've put TDM in charge of this and once he gets something together...we get our PR firm in NYC involved...and get you some readership. We can point everyone that's going to your present blog automatically to your new blog! It would take you years to do what we'll do for you in weeks!
JmeLee: thank you...so, my own blog with it's own url and it's own facebook page..and i will blog about holistic recovery....
JmeLee: wow, you actually own mystoryofrecovery.com..that's a pretty good url to have
MC: yep...it can be yours! let TDM know...I like it!
TDM: ok JamieLee -- what domain were you thinking
JmeLee: your original suggestion -- www.mystoryofrecovery.com
TDM: ok perfect...now pick out a template for your site and i'll install it for you....
JmeLee: holy crap you're fast
TDM: i know..i'm good with my internetz ;-0
JmeLee: AWESOME!!! thank you! so do my (few) readers that have already subscribed need to resubscribe?
JmeLee: ok...thank you thank you!!!
TDM: your welcome!!!!!
JmeLee: ugh i wish i had time to christen it....but i do not
TDM: what u up 2, where u headed today
JmeLee: therapy 3-4...then meeting for some stuff for my program 4-5.....then group 5-7.....then skills 7-9:30 at least...then dubstep show downtown and dancing yay...and it's the weekend at that point....wooohoooo
TDM: whoa..you're intense...thats a lot
JmeLee: soooo...is this whole thing.....kinda like my blog got.....syndicated? sorta? like a show on PBS that gets popular and gets picked up by nbc?
TDM: yeah we picked it up...you're official now
So, to put it all simply, I offer my recent FaceBook status:
"So the big news is my blog got picked up by a site ranking round 30,000 on Alexa..Which is awesome compared to my blog's rank of 10,155,000. Basically, I got syndicated this morning. I get my own website, and a facebook fan page for it, a webdesigner and pr company nyc to market me. just to keep blogging about my recovery..Except..I'm a REAL writer now. Officially."
ITR has members all over the world, there is so much potential here. I'm scared to death and on a rollercoaster of emotions, STILL..And this IS a dream come true, indeed..It was a goal of mine, when I began my original blog back in February, to eventually have an amazing following and perhaps even get paid to write more often. Which I knew would most likely take YEARS..But all of a sudden, a few months later, I basically get sponsored, for lack of a better term, and now have worldwide exposure. Scared? ME?!? HELL YES, SCARED NEARLY TO DEATH...But...I'm getting better.
As a side note, I also just wanted to announce to the Shakti Yahoo Community Group what is going on for me. Actually, Kirstin told me I NEEDED to. At the risk of sounding like a needy, whiney bitch, I will mention that I stopped posting anything to do with my blog on community a long time ago...Because I NEVER got any response, really. And even after posting about my blog here on community a number of times as well as on FaceBook, etc...I only had 2 apprentice subscribers, and 1 community member subscriber, and not even so much as an acknowledgement from anyone else at shakt, (If my memory serves me well) Which hurt my feelings, honestly, and made me feel like an ass for even mentioning it, since obviously, (it felt like) no one cared.
So....Setting all that aside, here's my post, to satisfy KK's request, and offer the community the info once again...Especially since I'm a REAL writer now...Officially. My new website IS live, however, we are still working on it's formatting and functionality, and I am not sure when it will be working completely...But it works well enough to take a peek at, if you're so inspired.
Or, you can check out my old blog, which is where I am actually posting THIS. For all my subscribers. Please make sure to subscribe to the new site, when the links are working! Sorry for the inconvenience...Anyways, here's the link to my old Blogger site...