The Scamp and the Gratitude Challenge: Week 38 and 39

I should be writing.

I should be writing emails and notes for my dissertation.

I should be working my butt off to get a paper ready for editing in just four short months.

I should not be sitting on my couch, still in my pjs watching Top Chef and pretending that having the articles open is the same thing as working.

I should get back in the habit of doing yoga everyday.

I just want to crawl back in bed. I picked up a second job (3rd if you think of the PhD as its own job) and having worked all week learning the ins and outs of the center left me dead.

I just keep rereading last week’s post and reminding myself that I am really stinking happy in Scotland, and once things settle down with the new job I will get back in the groove of a routine and that will hopefully up my productivity.

Week 38 in the gratitude challenge is all about my favorite music. This one is an easy one. I love music. I will give anything a try, and have everything from Ska to country to electroswing on my ipod, and my favorite thing to do is to make song based playlists for my commute to work and back. Music  helps me work, helps me move through yoga routines, and helps make me feel better when I am sad. One of my faults is that I tend to be very negative about situations, and think the worst of myself and situations I get into. When I spend too much time in silence, my brain goes crazy, and I get into the dark and twisty. I currently live alone, so I always have music playing when I am at home. When I can feel myself going to the dark and twisty, I put on some of the most upbeat music I have on my ipod and dance around my place while I clean.

It always makes me feel better.

I am going to put together a mini playlist of some of my favorite songs, since it is much more to listen to them than have me ramble on about them.

While there are plenty more to chose from, I feel this gives a bit of an idea of my go to songs to make me feel better. I have about 20,000 songs on my ipod, so I am never short of good music.

Week 39 is a harder one for me. This week is all about heritage.

The Oxford English Dictionary defines heritage as:

Valued objects and qualities such as historic buildings and cultural traditions that have been passed down from previous generations:Europe’s varied cultural heritage

This one falls on an interesting week as it is Jewish New Year. It is tradition that is important to my heritage and reminds me to reflect and really think about who am I am and the choices that I make in life. This last year has been really difficult and really horrible, and really fucking fantastic. I am grateful for my heritage and my values and traditions, but I often feel like I do not fit into that mold. I consider myself a gypsy soul, and because of that, I feel like I do not have a real set heritage. I just want to wander the world and learn as much as I can. That does not really lend itself well to tradition.

I’ve recently had the opportunity to meet a real gypsy. He was born in the French Alps, but has lived all over the world. He hates being called French, speaks with a mix of Scottish and French accent, and his idea of the perfect place to live is western Australia. We met by chance, but he is one of the first people I have ever had a conversation with who really understood the need to wander, and reluctance to be defined by where you are born, or where you grew up. We had some great conversation, and I think it could really be the start of a great friendship.

I think that is one of the things that I am most grateful for about my adopted gypsy soul heritage. It is allowing me to meet so many interesting people and live this pretty funky life. I cannot wait to see where I move to next, and the type of people that I will meet when I do. As for the heritage of my youth, I feel like some of the Jewish traditions that I observe and practice allow me to really reflect on myself as a person, and really remember that I have the strength and perseverance to move through  life doing the things I love.

…and that works just fine for me.

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