An ode to sunflowers

my dearest sunflower,

Oh how you’ve grown. I met you as a seedling, and little did I know you planted your roots in me. They stretched out lovingly like tender arms reaching for a hug. A hug was what you needed. You needed roots to anchor you to the ground as your mind soared. I don’t know what brought you to me. I had accepted that perhaps I was too much for others. Maybe my blossoms were too bright, too loud, and smelled too sweet. But you sunflower, you liked that. I never attracted many bees, and when I found one I wanted, it had already picked another flower. I never found myself stretching out to find others. But then I found you sunflower.

You made my colors turn from white to pink, blushing all the time. It was like a drug, I couldn’t wilt. We were bonded together from our roots. The drought came through and we shrived up together. But like any flower, we just waited. We waited for that storm to come and save us from the drought. When the rain washed away our dust, we found hope again. Finding hope gives us chances to peak out, to grow again. Oh sunflower you grew.

You grew to the point where you let my roots take hold of you once more, and I couldn’t be buzzing with more excitement. You see when a sunflower blooms, it reaches towards the sky. The petals are yellow with ripe sunshine, and you can’t help but stare in wonder at it. It brightens you, just like you did my sunflower.

We grow entwined, we grow sweet as honey, as time passes we don’t wilt anymore because we hold each other up. You are my sunflower, my sunshine and I am so grateful that as long as the sun shines you are mine. You are my sun on a cloudy day. Always here, always smiling. Laughter like a bright, yellow melody. Keep blooming babe.

Let your roots take hold, and grow.

love,

lily of the valley

Push one of epi: A look into medical tv series

Anyone who knows me knows one thing. That I’m self proclaimed “medical show trash”. The interest comes from a love of medical series that my mom, who’s worked at hospitals and medical offices since before I was born, and I watched together. This summer I decided to binge two historic medical tv shows, ER and Saint Elsewhere. Two very different shows, but who’s work I can see reflected in current shows.

St Elsewhere really takes a look into doctors personal lives, and brings a sense of identity to the medical community that I argue didn’t really exist before. Doctors in other shows would be white coats with cold personalities that often just were used to scare the character they were treating. With St. Elsewhere we see a surprisingly diverse cast for a show from 1982, with star studded cast such as Denzel Washington and Christina Pickles. I was also interested in not only was there a female doctor, but they did discuss her over working herself to prove her right to be on staff as a doctor and not a nurse. There was a female Asian medical student, and a student that had traveled abroad that didn’t know English. That’s not to say that show didn’t have a problem with racism or sexism, it did through dialogue and story as unfortunately a lot of shows in the 80s and 90s had.

Speaking of the 90s, in 1994 the medical drama ER premiered and I’ve been binging that as well. ER is such essential viewing if you’re interested in creating a drama, or a medical show because it really set off the idea of emergency medicine and how doctors respond to it. It was one of the longest reigning drama shows on US network television with a record 15 seasons, only rivaled by NBC’s Law&Order with 20 seasons, Law & Order SVU at 19 currently going into the 20th, CSI ended at an equal 15, and the current medical drama Grey’s Anatomy which finished season 13 this year and will be going into 14 in the fall.

ER took the concept of bringing human qualities to those in white coats with a different twist than St. Elsewhere, because what is more dramatic than an Emergency department in downtown Chicago? Location is a very big key reason why this show did so well, shooting in local Chicago areas and developing the industry in the city but also because the amount of trauma they saw seemed relevant to the urban legend of Chicago being such a dangerous city. The cast changes as the seasons grow, and while I have just finished season one I can not speak for the diversity or the topics covered through all 15 years but I can talk about the 26 episodes I have seen. As a viewer you’re thrust into the fray without much explanation of who, what, and where- almost like you’re a medical student alongside doe-eyed John Carter who starts his first surgical ER rotation in the first season.

Notable other series I’ve watched and recommend are: NBC’s The Night Shift, canceled Emily Owens MD (on netflix), Black Box (canceled),  Saving Hope( which is a sort of Canadian Grey’s Anatomy that deals with life between death), Private practice, Code Black, Strong Medicine, Chicago Med, and Rosewood.

I think that medical dramas are such a rich environment that really looks at the human condition in such a unique way. There’s this quality about them that writers should strive for, and that’s what’s so beautiful. The best medical dramas to me are not just the white coat doctors trying to save a life, they’re the ones that show you every person’s flaws. If a doctor believes he’s gods gift by saving lives, the intern who just can’t get their confidence up, the kid who followed the family dream and has yet to find our their passion for the art of medicine- all of these characters that exist alongside us in our own civilization.

What a driving force of Grey’s Anatomy was, is the nostalgic feeling of not knowing what you’re doing as an intern. Things got messy personally, and then the patients reflected the personal challenge in the doctors lives. The key for everything is humanity. To show characters as well rounded individuals.

Some TV doctors you see preforming to their best, being messy but saving the day eventually and you say, I don’t want them to save me- but I argue that one of them probably has and you just didn’t know.

I think that the beauty in TV medical shows is that it’s this secret world, you think just happens there but really it doesn’t. You see what makes the news but you don’t know every story of your local ER. It’s magical to think these situations could exist from interns sleeping with their boss and not knowing, to nurses over dosing, irony of neurosurgeons dying from the lack of head CT, or doctors struggling to not become cold and shells of themselves from working so hard. These are human issues. You can sympathize with these amazing casts.

That is what a medical drama should be. You should feel a pull at your heartstrings from the sheer imagination of real people going through this, but also a wonderment of them pulling off the most heroic day of their lives only to wake up and try to outshine it the next day.

Every day heroes. That’s what they all are at their core, and it’s so beautiful to watch them. Medical dramas teach you about medicine, yourself, and what it takes to be a doctor. I’ve learned so much about who I am from the characters I love, and I’ve learned terms, and how to talk myself through injuries, or situations in my life that parallel the screen. You can always learn from TV, never let anyone tell you that you can’t.

So here’s to the tv doctors, the tv surgeons, to the lives saved at St. Elgis, from Seattle Grace to Grey Sloan Memorial, to Cook County, and the lives lost. Thank you for being there. Thank you for being human.

tea: orange zinger celestial tea

 

 

 

Omens

“I think the person I have a crush on I might be talking to right now,”

“Oh Shit. I really do have a crush on you too,”

The air was full of the mouthwatering smell of hot dogs on a grill. My hands were wet and stained from tie-dying. I was having the time of my life. My heart was pounding while I typed. It felt right I suppose at the time. The night went on, and I pulled out my camera. I have a love for taking photos on that day. The lights, the bright in the dark, everything’s pretty. We’re celebrating our life, so it only feels right. The wind picked up.

It’s like the wind knew I was making a mistake. It was telling me to not do what I did. It blew and it blew and it didn’t knock down my thoughts of you until I was too far in. I was too deep. My phone was in my pocket and I was promising to talk to you in the morning. My best friend pulled out a sparkler with green tips on the ends. She lit it as the sun started to set behind the clouds. The skyline was golden, and I have to admit…I kept one photo of it. Just that one before it all went bad.

The photos were beautiful, but then again they always are. Sometimes when I shoot I just go trigger happy with the shutter and I pray for the best. Kind of like button smashing in a video game. Its messy, like me I know. But sometimes when I have time, I take my time. Maybe we were trigger happy? I mean I created a goddamn playlist for you within the next week I’m sure. I can’t check for dates since it’s been deleted.

But as that sparkler was lit, and the wind bellowed across the valley the real omen came. All it took was one spark.

See we ran across the court to the field. It was golden brown with drought ridden grass, and we didn’t even consider anything. I was vain in the moment but who isn’t? The single ember fell and suddenly everything was on fire. The dead grass was burnt to a crisp. We swore profanities and our hearts beat out of our chests. Here I was having just gotten into a relationship when I could be in trouble in mere seconds. My heart was beating already from the idea of falling for a girl, and then now I was anxious over the fire. Fight or flight sparked within me. I automatically fought.We were saved by kind neighbors, drowning the flames in water.

We smothered the fire…maybe I smothered you was what it was.

Maybe omens exist for a reason but thing is we may know something is an omen or a sign but always after the fact. No one sees a terrible thing in the distance. We all have strong gut instincts, I do for sure, and I always follow my gut but what happens when your gut doesn’t give you the warning? What omen is there for you follow? It’s not there, or you’re too blind to follow it. I accidentally lit a field on fire the night I got together with my first ex girlfriend. That doesn’t just happen you know?

We were always burning but the problem about burning love is that it doesn’t last. When you light a match, it burns the entire match. Fire destroys. Our hearts were kindling that love took a hold of, and set ablaze. What’s left is bitter, coarse, and burnt remains of what once was. The screenshots and the texts, the, now blocked, numbers, snapchats, instagrams, and twitters.

Omens are always there if you look hard enough.

drink: Country Peach passion from celestial tea fruit sampler pack

Just like life

This is a follow up I suppose. My last post was all about how my life restarted as the snow fell across Chicago, which by the way has become a winter hell vortex. And now?  My school semester has ended. I survived in more ways than one, but enough about that. Maybe another time.

Something I noticed while trudging through the streets, being pelted with snow, and a wind chill was that- snow isn’t like rain. Rain falls steadily and fast, or sometimes slow with heavy drops. But it’s always the same way. Its straight forward, it falls down to the ground in steady streams. But with snow…snow is more like life. It’s crazy. It’s erratic. It stops and starts again. It falls in the most beautiful way, it floats down from the sky. It goes left or right but it’s path is never straight forward. Life isn’t straight forward, and it shouldn’t be. My life this semester wasn’t. But I shouldn’t expect it to, and I have to work on that.

I like control. I like order and structure and when I can’t control something I get anxious. It’s no surprise I was planning my first year of college since I was in middle school, and it was no accident that I got where I am today. I worked and I worked. It’s probably why I tend to focus on live TV technical producing, I control what’s on screen. Why I like to edit. Because I put everything together, I’m calling the shots for the project. But this need for structure and control goes beyond just career, it impacts everything.

Even relationships. Not to say that I’m a terrible person in relationships but control is a powerful thing. Repetition and control of that. I have to let that go. I have to stop expecting everything to be so perfect or shaped how my mind wants it. I have to let my love take me in different ways that I never expected. I should want spontaneity- which is hard when social anxiety is constantly telling me to plan every single event I ever go to. Being in love with the unexpected is hard, and very hard to say yes to.

This year I picked up Year Of Yes by Shonda Rhimes, and it struck me because it was me. Simply me. The excuses, the neverminds, I ‘never say yes to anything. I wouldn’t be so brave to claim that 2017 will be my year of yes, because I know my faults, but it’s time to stop shying away from what I truly need.

My life should be like the snow. It should be me falling gently through hardships and letting life take me where it’s supposed to.

(like someone’s masterclass and Hamilton SF 2017...)

Drink of choice this post? Kava Stress Relief from yogi tea (which I ironically didn’t open until after my finals were over. It’ll keep me company while I continue my Jake Gyllenhaal movie binge watch between plane delay watching.)

The First Snow

December 4th 2016. Let’s preface this by saying that where I come from there’s no snow. No snow on Christmas, most people drive hours to get to Tahoe to get even the smallest amount of it. It’s not anything I’m used to. So I checked the weather maybe sometime mid last week and my eyes lit up. There I saw the little snowflake icon in the iphone weather app. Snow!

My life took a turn this past week full of me getting a nasty viral bug, a pretty bad breakup, and the stress of finals finally taking a toll on me. So to see snow on the weather app, kind of made my day. Yesterday I eventually pulled myself out of the hole of wallow and self pity you generally get in during a breakup and I went outside (and got myself some chinese food). It was still ‘the night before’ but in straight up Lorelai Gilmore fashion, I could taste the snow in the air. I knew this taste before. When I was 12 I attended a science camp up towards Tahoe in California, it snowed in April during our trip. We were all severely under prepared but I remembered that taste. It’s not something you forget.

I fell asleep excited and I woke up just an hour before snowfall today.

Snow is magic. 

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You know I’m surrounded by natives here who deal with the snow every year and they complain about how wet it is and it makes everything cold. You’re damp for hours afterwards and it’s just a hassle. But for me this snow is something new, it’s fresh, and realizing it now…snow is a reset button.

When I first saw the flakes come down past my window this afternoon a sense of renewal burst through me. I just got through a messy break up and the snow spoke to me. It told me that it’s okay to start again. You get a fresh life when it snows.

I did venture into the snow today, and I took one deep breath and smiled as it came pouring down ontop of me. It soaked my beanie, it made my knees damp, I was finally able to wear those snow boots I bought,  and those flakes got very close to my eyes. But I was starting over. I walked, smiling at everyone I saw. I tasted the air, I tasted the actual snow, and I felt good. Some areas of the side walk were slushy, others were firm. There was a beautiful small garden park covered in a white wonderland. I didn’t take a picture because the snow was so heavy out. I paused when I stopped at streetlights and just let the snow fall over me. I let it fall onto the palm of my gloves. It covered my hair, and my purse, and my jacket. But I was okay with it. I started to see this white blanket cover everything and it covered me until I got home. I feel clean. I feel refreshed, and I feel like I can accomplish things. I no longer feel weighted down by my mistakes of 2016.

That’s the story of how I pushed reset on my life while going to buy milk at Trader Joe’s during the snow.

Drink of choice this post? Trader Joe’s brand peppermint hot cocoa x