June 21 was yesterday

My birthday that is.

This year there is no I Ching reading, I didn’t do one. I think I am saving it for when I have a situation which really does need guidance. Right now things are moving along the way they always seem to do and I figured I would be wasting the reading on what is sort of a humdrum occasion, birthday or no birthday. Also, lately I have started to pay some attention to all the “positive thinking” literature out there and that somehow predicates that I take my life into my own hands. (Not that the I Ching says anything different either, it should be added). Changing your perception of it will actually change the world around you they claim, and I do think that they are onto something quite fundamental with that. So, I am painfully trying to change my thought patterns, using positive terms when I formulate things in my head or outwardly. This is very hard to accomplish given how language itself seems to be embedded in the negative, how the negative statement is the one which pops out automatically whenever we speak or think. I often goof off and then I go back to it. It is a truly tough thing to adapt to, to create positive value sentences… Another thing which these people emphasize is positive self perception, a good self image, and I am trying to work on that as well. This one is especially needed and very very very hard to attain at that.

Other than that, it was a bit of a down day, my birthday: A cosmic fluke made me arrive in this world on the very same day as my mother did. We were both born on June 21st, which is also the day of the Summer solstice and the day when Gemini changes over to Cancer. And, this year my mother is no more. Which leaves my 105 year old home-bound grandmother much bereaved, especially on such a day. So, we all went over to her place, to hang out with her. If it hadn’t been for this organization, I would probably have forgotten the day was my birthday in the first place. My sister had bought this extremely rich chocolate cake (knowing how I adore the stuff). I have been dieting very strenuously over the past few months getting rid of the extra 5 kilos that I seem to have accumulated last Winter when I was feeling quite lousy and sought consolation in copious servings of Pepperidge Farm oatmeal cookies. Yesterday was the first time in a long time that I pigged out on this Sacher Torte taste-alike monster. Result: Severely upset stomach today!

One thing that I have decided to do is to give myself a very nice gift this year: My sister and my brother in-law are leaving for a luxury cruise which they will board right here in Istanbul in a few days. It takes them to places like Dubrovnik and Venice. Lasts a week and costs the earth of course, since this is a floating 5+ star hotel with spas, numerous Michelin star restaurants and what have you. The sort of thing that I normally tend to avoid like the plague in other words. Not so now. I am going to do this at some point this summer. Apparently it is wonderfully breezy and cool, and so when the city here is boiling, I will be sitting all fresh and alert. I am going to pack my favorite crime novels, sit on a deck chair reading them one by one, get facial treatments and massages whenever I feel like it and step out every day to wander around in beautiful old Mediterranean cities. And yes, if you haven’t guessed it already: This is part of the “Elif Ayiter thinks Elif Ayiter deserves a 5+ star luxury holiday – aka. working on an improved self-image” therapy program.

(Or I may get my house re-painted of course. It is way overdue for a paint job – the last one was over 8 years ago and you have no idea what kind of damage a heavy smoker is capable of doing to the paintwork over that time span. Now, painting the house is the sort of thing that I would normally be doing over a summer holiday. And… will probably end up doing yet again this year… ouch. Like I said, breaking these habits is hard work indeed.)

Well, maybe I will do both.



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