A quickie.

I said I’d blog about the bathtime photo shoot brainstorm I had this evening, so I suppose I had better.

Melissa gave me some Lush bath bombs for Christmas, and I finally decided to crack one tonight. Literally, as they’re the size of my fist, and I can easily get two uses out of each. Half of one was tossed into the tub, and the swirling colors and fizzing pieces propelling through the water mesmerized me until, by the time I actually got in the tub, I had to add more hot water.

As I was relaxing into the bath, the heat, the pressure of water against skin drawing the stress of the day, the week, the month, out of me, I turned over, as I usually do, and crossed my arms beneath my breasts. Through the rippling fuchsia water, I saw the semicolon tattoo on my right wrist, framed perfectly by my cleavage. If I could have captured that image, I would have in a heartbeat. Of course, with both hands underwater, there was no chance of that. Then I thought, How cool would it be if we had cameras built into our eyes??? and wondered, Is there already a sci-fi/fantasy novel with that feature? I thought of Olhado from Orson Scott Card’s Speaker for the Dead and Xenocide, but his was a “deformity,” not an accessory, not an option that comes with a trim level, which is how I imagined it in my .72 second spurt of creativity.

(WHOA. I had a semi-creative thought. THIS IS NEW AND DIFFERENT AND MY MIND IS A LITTLE BIT BLOWN.)

So, considering what I might like to capture with my camera-eyes if I had them, I moved in the water. I repositioned my hands, my arms, my breasts; I turned over and leaned forward to include my lower body, appreciating my curves, extending knee and ankle and toes. I enjoyed how the water felt like silk against my skin, the way the rivulets of color ran down my legs, how the bath bomb gave multi-colored, effervescent life to what was previously but a clear substance that somewhat distorted my body’s features.

It made my body beautiful.

And then I realized, my body already was. I just needed a lil hot pink and glitter to bring it to my attention.

And that is worthy of a photo shoot. So I’m gonna make it happen. Hopefully with the brilliantly talented Erin O’Neill, whose shoot with me for her Proper Sorrows series was an incredibly powerful and incredibly beautiful experience.

Happy Friday, loves. I hope you find beauty in yourself tonight as I did.

Success.

One of the first suggestions Bob Bly makes in Getting Started as a Freelance Writer, a book I purchased a few years ago and have recently dusted off, is to determine what success looks like to you. If you don’t know what constitutes “success,” how can you achieve it? I’ve certainly been thinking about this with regard to my writing, setting goals along the road to success, and also creating an image of success that I would like to reach and either maintain or exceed. Some aspects of that picture are purely financial: one piece is that I would like a certain amount of money in savings. Others will be emotionally satisfying: each time I see my byline in print, for example. All of them together will make me feel as though I have “arrived,” like I’m a “real writer.”

I think this is a concept I can apply to my personal life, as well. What does a successful relationship with Joshua look like to me? With other family members? Friends? Lovers? How often should I reevaluate my idea of success in each of these?

I was talking with Lisa the other night about the way people are often promoted into positions where they now supervise the people doing the job at which they previously excelled. Sometimes this works well and that person discovers and develops leadership traits in addition to knowing inside and out the tasks their new subordinates perform. Other times, they don’t have innate managerial skills and are unsure how to obtain them, and they either micromanage or don’t manage at all, setting themselves and their team up for failure.

Is this what sometimes happens in intimate relationships?

Do we sometimes promote an amazing lover to partner status, only to find that the traits we loved when we were dating them don’t translate so well to the exclusive partner lifestyle? And if so, wouldn’t it make sense to move forward with that knowledge and change to the structure that felt so amazing before, rather than plodding deeper into an unsatisfactory arrangement and ruining everything in the long run?

That’s all the time I’ve got (gotta love half hour lunch breaks!), but I know I had a situation like this where I could have saved myself a lot of hurt, time, and money by sticking to my initial plan of reevaluating a relationship a month into its new stage. Oh, hindsight, you gloriously perfect wench, you.