Tag: day-to-day

Dorienne vs. the devil

August 22nd, 2011 — 1:36am

Re-posted from my WordPress.com blog:

Every Sunday for the past three or four years, I’ve had a personal ritual that took me close to a year to recognize. Each Sunday following church, I require a three to five-hour nap. The nap by itself is nothing remarkable as many people take naps on weekends because the time is available, but I am not a nap person. The only time I end up sleeping during the day is when I’ve gone the last 28 hours without sleep and I have to go to sleep; I don’t nap. Every Sunday, however, I require a nap following church.

This Sunday nap only occurs on Sundays when I go to church. After going the entire month of July without setting foot in my church, I’ve tested this empirically and came to a conclusion I suspected long ago, but never had the opportunity to truly examine.

What’s fascinating is that I’m not doing anything that would require sleep on a Sunday afternoon. I usually get a full-night’s sleep Saturday evenings, the drive to the church doesn’t take any longer than the drive to first-job , I don’t wake any earlier than I do during the week and most weeks I don’t do much more than clap a little, sing with the choir a bit and take notes from the sermon. Logically, there’s no need for this Sunday nap, but when I sit down and really consider what is happening to me each Sunday morning, it makes perfect sense.

My current schedule with first-job makes it virtually impossible to visit my church throughout the week, so the only time when I have an opportunity to enter God’s house with the specific purpose of praise is Sunday morning. Every Sunday, however, I run into a gamut of emotions and “whisperings” in my ear that would prevent me from attending church.

First comes sheer laziness, as my bed is never as warm and comfortable as it is when I have to leave it to go to church in the morning. Adding onto that laziness comes procrastination which comes in the form of everything from checking all my e-mail accounts to perusing every single Facebook update from the past sixteen hours, even those I’d read the previous day, and on occasion even finding my way to StumbleUpon or Twitter to really waste the morning.

On Sundays when I make it to church, I must actually battle through all the negative, lazy thoughts and the onslaught of procrastination thrown in my direction just to get myself to the shower. Even after that, I’ve got the slow haul of getting dressed and putting on my makeup and, in that time, all these thoughts of “Wow, you’re already going to be late. You probably should just give up for now.” flow through my head. Some weeks, I give in to this line of thinking and don’t get to church, but when I pray about it the previous night and I set my mind to it, I can usually push through all of this and can get out the door.

Once out the door, a hunger, that I never usually meet so early in the morning, can often set in and all these desires to make pit stops along the way to church come to mind. Perhaps a stop at McDonald’s first? Maybe I’ll just stop at the Walgreen’s real quick to get something? Still, if I focus on the task at hand, I can get to the highway and finally get to the neighborhood where my church is.

My church’s neighborhood is not in the best of places, but that is where God put me and despite my best efforts to go elsewhere…that is where He put me. That said, when I come close to that neighborhood, thoughts of safety sometimes spark. “It’s really not safe for me to be out here” is most common, but even within three minutes of the church I can still get thoughts of all the million other things I’ve got to do that day and given that I’m already late…well, perhaps I can just get there next week when I’ll be on time?

After I push through all of this, I get to the church parking lot and on most days, I’m usually fine once I can see the finish line, but even there, I can still be tempted. Some weeks, I’m almost an hour late for service and the desire to not appear to be one of “those” Christians is deep and on one disastrous occasion, even caused me to just drive home, even though I was already there! With that memory in the back of my mind, thoughts of “You’ve done it before” and “You can always go next week” continually filter into my mind. God is good though and it is rare that I’ll turn away once I get within thirty seconds of the church doors, but still…it takes quite a bit of effort just to get out of the car.


All I do on a Sunday morning is get up, get dressed and go to church, but the act of doing all of this is a battle. It’s a weekly battle that gets no easier as time continues; in fact, it gets more difficult the longer I try to walk in line with Christ and, after a morning of stepping around the mental boxing ring with the devil, by Sunday afternoon, I’m completely exhausted and I just need a nap.

I wrote 714 words today (window popped on the screen from “himebrit”) and, while I had to battle to write them, that fight is nothing compared to the one I’ll face next when it’s time to go to church again.

Comments Off on Dorienne vs. the devil | Deep Thought, Favorite, Jesus

Dear Netflix: I still heart you

July 12th, 2011 — 10:13pm

So, I like many other Netflix users, received a disheartening e-mail today about a change in the Netflix pricing. Now, instead of receiving streaming and DVDs together at one price, each service is offered separately and charged separately.

Currently, I have 5 discs out at a time and I get free streaming for the pretty price of 34.99, plus tax. Starting in September, I will have the same service for 35.98, plus tax…barely a dollar increase for the same service.

The cheapskate that I am would normally be outraged at being charged more for the same service, but if I liken it to cable service, Netflix comes out the winner. For years Time Warner had effectively screwed me over by increasing their prices as much as ten dollars a month for receiving the exact same service, without having reasons as valid as Netflix’s.

What reasons, you ask? How about multi-fold increases in the customer base, all running off the same servers and all needing to increase the contracts with the studios? Sounds like a fair reason to increase a bit for the least profitable services.

What’s not profitable, you ask? How about the people paying 16.99 for 3 discs at a time and also a service that people who have no discs pay for 7.99? If you do the math, it only makes sense to differ the services as the folks paying 16.99 are getting far more than anyone else on line.

Now, someone like me at the higher echelon of Netflix service barely feels in the increase at all. In fact, it feels like a decent and expected increase for the cost of service and I don’t remember this big a stink when the previous year’s price increases came to light. That said, if you were paying just 16.99 for 3 discs at a time, you have been rather hosed, but seriously…why are people losing their minds over this? Did no one ever expect that Netflix prices were eventually going to increase over time?

It’s unfortunate that if you originally paid less than $20 for an awesome service that you now have to pay a whopping 8 dollars more than you did two months earlier, but when you consider the alternative, you are still paying far less than you did for cable.

If you are pressed for cash, then decide what you use more. Are you really taking advantage of all three discs at your house at the same time you stream movies and TV shows? If not, take advantage of one of the brilliant other offers available, like 1 disc at a time for 15.98, for example, and stop crying. If you do use all three discs and stream like crazy, then be advised that the gravy train stops here.

I, however, not being cheap when it comes to my Netflix love, feel very little of this new chain of events and, honestly, if a price hike is what it takes to keep Netflix service great and keep them from moving their call centers to abroad, I’ll pay an extra dollar or eight any day.

1 comment » | On Me, Politics

The Potter’s House

March 20th, 2011 — 11:57pm

I wasn’t actually listening to the song tonight as I wrote but I thought the title fitting for this post. I’ve always adored the song because the lyrics just help me see that there’s always “someone” to help me in dire matters:

Verse 1:
In case you have fallen by the wayside of life;
dreams and visions shattered, You’re all broken inside.
You don’t have to stay in the shape that you’re in;
the potter wants to put you back together again,
oh, the potter wants to put you back together again.

Verse 2:
In case your situation has turned upside down,
and all that you’ve accomplished, is now on the ground.
You don’t have to stay in the shape that you’re in;
the potter wants to put you back together again,
oh, the potter wants to put you back together again.

You who are broken, stop by the potter’s house.
You who need mending, stop by the potter’s house;
give Him the fragments of your broken life,
my friend, the potter wants to put you back together again,
oh, the potter wants to put you back together again

Joy in the potter’s house.
Peace in the potter’s house.
Love in the potter’s house.
There is salvation in the potter’s house.
There is healing in the potter’s house.
There is deliverance in the potter’s house.
You’ll find everything you need in the potter’s house.

The potter wants to put you back together again,
oh, the potter wants to put you back together again.

I went to church today and even got there a little earlier than I have in the past and I realized that when I’m struggling and depressed, for some reason the last thing I ever think of is turning to prayer to help “put me back together again.” I have my little prayers throughout the day or if I’m ever contemplating that one day, I’m going to die and transform into another state of energy and existence, but when I’m in most need of real, focused prayer, my mind is on everything else. I can never sit down and really think things through and have a full “conversation” with God to guide me through the frustration.

However, this is really just a personality flaw in that I hate asking for help…from anyone and this is the reason why it is important that I always attend church and make Sundays a day of rest. It’s only by going to “the potter’s house” that I feel complete again and can see everyone of my struggles and troubles in the proper light. I’m not sensible enough to pray the way I need to when I need to, so I need to go somewhere specific to forcibly give my thoughts the clarity needed to make strong decisions and still remain a child of God.

My struggles with first-job: totally insignificant. My priorities true priorities have not changed since before my career began to make these upward strides and I know I can’t allow first-job to deter me from them. I need to get back into the Word and read like I want to learn again and I need to shift my focus on being the writer I want to be. I’ve got too many distractions swimming around me and as hard as it is to say it, I’ve got too many “worldly” people in who I turn to instead of turning to prayer.

I wrote 305 words today (last words:then it’s one less thing you have to worry about) and every one of them was made only by the grace of God. I need to remember this every time I write and I need to renew my focus on not just getting through this era of my life as I march onward to my life goals, but to march onward as a Christian. So, I’m going to take the fragments of my broken life and hand them to the Potter because only He can put me back together again and make me Dorienne I’m meant to be.

1 comment » | Jesus, On Me, Writing

A good start

January 4th, 2011 — 12:18am

With only laying out just two major goals for myself as of 1/1/11 (be a better child of God and write every day), I think I have done a decent job so far: I managed to get to church on Sunday and I’ve written something every day.

I suppose now is as good a time as any to set some real goals for myself, though not for the year, but for just the month. A year is a really long time when you think about it and so much can change in a year. Houses could be bought and lost, weight could be lost and gained again, families could be shattered or started…a lot can happen in just 12 months. So, since I am desiring a change (one of them being the current theme of this blog and the state of DorienneSmith.com), I think the best way to set goals is to create some realistic ones and follow-up once a month to make sure I’m on track.

This month’s goal, on top of the other aforementioned daily ones, is to get a least a twenty minute workout at least once a week. It doesn’t sound like much, but after this weekend, I realize I may need to start slow.

I was playing Kinect with my little cousins Friday night and Saturday morning I was in so much pain that I could barely move. At first I thought it was just some new side effect of a caffeine headache, but then slowly I realized that it was just moving around with the Kinect the previous night. I have been so sedentary these last five or sixth months that just fifteen minutes of activity that I used to be able to do at a moment’s notice was too much for me. I was worn out after the first round of games with the kids and, while I’m no spring chicken anymore, there’s no reason that just a little physically activity should leave me in paralyzing pain the next day. It’s time to stop the madness.

A workout a week is barely anything at all, but I at least have the plan to place what I need to go straight to the gym after work in my car so that I’ll have no excuse. Hopefully next week, I can stretch it two weeks and maybe even add a new goal, but if I can just manage this through January, I can look back on the start of this year proud of what I tried to do for myself.

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May 11th, 2010 — 3:09am

My iPhone slipped on some haphazardly laying items on my kitchen table and crashed upon the kitchen tiles.

I can replay the moment over and over in my head and, each time it plays in slow motion as the single most important object in my life hit the floor and cracked. It is still very usable and I’ve a trip to the Apple store planned for tomorrow/this morning, but carrying my broken phone today got me really thinking about how society places such high regard on these items.

I’ve only had my iPhone since October 2009 and yet it is rarely out of reach, replacing my planner, my heavy bibles, my notepaper and pens, my alarm clock, my camera and, for a short time, my books (that is, until Kindle came and saved the day on Christmas!). This small device quickly became everything and the crack in it’s face has placed a major crack in my life, but there’s really no reason for it.

During the milliseconds of panic, when I thought my phone and it’s data had been lost forever, I imagined trying to go through life without my iPhone; never knowing what time it is, never able to update my Facebook status at a moment’s notice, never able to text and receive texts throughout the day…never able to get to the next level on Stick Wars. The problem is that, not so long ago, there wasn’t even an iPhone in existence and not so long before that, it was plausible that not everyone and (literally) their grandmother had a cellphone at all.

I remember a time when I was not afraid to leave my house without my phone, and could even go for a whole afternoon, or even a whole day without needing it. Today, however, I wondered vaguely if I could even risk going outside with my phone simply cracked.

I’ll concede that times today are slightly different than ten years ago. Ten years ago, things such as land-lines existed in every house and it was not expected that everyone have their cells ready at a moment notice for any trouble or mildly amusing event in their lives. Nowadays, I find myself staring at a wall jack, unsure of its purpose or wondering, “why is that ethernet outlet so small?” and my thoughts tend turn towards the flow of a witty or eloquent Facebook update.

All of this leads me wondering…when did become so dependent on something so small? Just the other night, I was driving around lost in a thunderstorm and my iPhone saved me; a few taps in Google Maps and I just had to follow the blinking dot on home. But, surely, I’ve been lost in thunderstorms previously and still found my way? Surely, before the advent of iPhones and smartphones in general, there were methodologies in place that allowed mankind to think things through to completion and operate without depending on something other than their wit and their wiles to get them through the day?

I love my iPhone. I’ve said multiple times and in multiple ways, but all this dependence…all of this lackadaisical living…all of this wandering without wondering…

Well, it feels a little cracked.

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Saved from my own harm

April 26th, 2009 — 8:40am

I experienced an incident yesterday that happened several months earlier in a similar fashion and, once again, found myself…for lack of a better word: pleased to find that Christ had delivered me from myself yet again.

I have a way of getting ahead of myself, allowing my emotions to take control of my tongue (or in this case, my typing fingers) to the point that I can no longer muster the common sense needed to interact with the rest of the world. To put it simply, when I hear or read something I don’t like, I sometimes respond before taking stock of what I’m saying and what the ramifications of saying could be.

Several months ago, I found myself in a situation where I thought I could not handle the people around me and was just about to say something abrupt and simply mean before exiting the scene, but Christ stifled my voice for just long enough for the situation to work out by itself and leave me looking and feeling like the person I’ve always been rather than the mean and embittered person who tries to come out every now and again. Yesterday, I once again was saved from myself.

Sarcasm is my preferred mode of interacting with others; people always seem to remember the witty, sarcastic girl they had met the previous day. While this can have it’s ups and downs, I know I can definitely “dish out” much more than I can take in return. When I allowed a series of witty snips to really get to me, instead of relying on my own sarcastic quips to take away the minor hurt, I prepared to retort with something that was downright arrogant and mean. In other words, I was prepared to be completely unlike myself in a minute of subdued rage over being incapable of bringing a “comeback” soon enough. The amazing thing is, I actually completed my rant and forwarded it for my quarry to see. It was only after the fact, when I didn’t receive an immediate response, that I took the time to re-read what I had written and realized that what I said could have been the very thing that ruined my friendship with this person. But, then God stepped in for me. 🙂

Even though I’d sent my message, it wasn’t read; we sarcastic run in the same circles and my recipient didn’t wait for a response, and so, my mean epithets were never even seen. The words I’d said were harsh and rude and make me feel ashamed, but it’s moments like these that help me realize that I have to work hard to keep that mean, embittered person from taking over my life again.

Christ has always shielded me, to the point of almost spoiling me. He spoils me with the people around me and He spoils me with gifts as well. I just find it rather amusing that God can find a moment out of infinite time to step in and save myself from augmenting or harming the blessings that lie in wait for me.

1 comment » | Jesus, On Me

Whoa! Time flies when one is doing nothing.

April 2nd, 2006 — 8:57pm

I haven’t done much this week. The rents are in Italy and threatening to bring me back jars of air and “Italian” ice as souvenirs. I am feeling much better though; surprise, surprise. Hopefully, since this is all behind me for the month, I can get a good start on tomorrow. The next time I go to the doctor, I will definitely ask about this. There’s no way it can be normal.

Today is I’ve spent working on the website, and I’ll figure out what to do with Bartleby tomorrow. He’ll be fine in the cup in which he previously lived. I can’t believe I wasted money on a stupid tank with a filter. Eventually, I’ll stop being lazy; my whole life will be better off that way….

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It’s Wednesday?

March 29th, 2006 — 9:54pm

When did it become Wednesday? Wasn’t it just Monday? Suppose not….I guess one tends to lose track of time when playing the sims while watching the Lord of the Rings trilogy all day, making some time to attend classes. This week has flown by for me. And I think I’ve got a bit of a handle on what’s wrong with me….(haha) in a sense.

Crazed anger and sporadic depression figure into it somehow. Yet, it’s like once you understand something, the less daunting it seems. I don’t know if this has just passed until next month or if, now that I’ve identified the problem, that my brain miraculously corrected itself. I’ll probably never know.

Now, for more Sims, another movie and to begin bullshitting my English homework for tomorrow.

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Haven’t felt an anger like this in a long while

March 26th, 2006 — 11:13pm

First, I fucking hate people. What is wrong with people that makes it so no one can just say what they mean? I have never NOT been straight with people. If I didn’t want to go out, I’ll just say, I don’t want to go out. No hard feelings, I just don’t want to. Rather than put a drag on everyone else’s evening, I’ll just stay at home when I don’t fucking feel like dealing with people. I have never just gone out to go out and then be bitchy all night because I didn’t really want to go in the first place. A prime example of a bullshit thing that I’ve never done, because I seen no reason to not be straight with people. In the end, you piss off more people by keeping things to yourself than you will by initially be up front about things.

If she didn’t want to go on vacation with us, she just should have fucking said it, so we could have made our plans and been on our way. But no! She’s going to dick around and not give a straight answer for weeks and weeks and then go off with her boyfriend for a week. Like that shit didn’t take forever to plan. Like she couldn’t have said, “Look, girls, I’m going off with him for Spring Break. You guys can do what you like.” It would have been fucking fine! We could have shared pictures or whatever when we all got back. But no! She wants to dick around and not say a fucking thing, and make us all have the lousiest break ever. God, I just can’t fucking stand people. The world would be such a better place if people just quit worrying about hurt feelings or some other bullshit and say what they mean. If she had just said that she didn’t want to go with us, yes, I would have been slightly angry for a bit, but then the whole episode would pass and everything would be fine. Now, I’m angrier than I’ve ever been in a really long time. Bringing home fucking Michigan seashells! Like that’s going to make up for fucking dicking around for weeks and weeks about going on vacation. It’s shit like this that makes people kill one another. It’s mental states like this, like the one I’m in now, that cause people to be acquitted for murder by reasons of mental default or whatever. So fucking angry!

I can’t even remember what I had for a second or a third. Fucking seashells! Goddamn, I hate people! Like I need this stress going into a new quarter….

I just need to calm down….I’ve got the relaxing music playing and I’ve fixed my laptop, to some degree. At least I know it’s problems stemmed from overheating and not some random virus or something.

There are times when I wish I had a gun. Sometimes, it might be nice to go off and shoot the hell out of something for a bit and then come home and relaxing, having already gotten out my frustration. Other times, I know that there would be times like these and I know I’d be writing this as a sworn statement or reliving these moments while being judged by a panel of twelve “peers.”

Deep breaths now….

I saw Inside Job tonight and I liked it. There’s nothing better than seeing one’s two favorite actors on screen together at the same time and do it so well. I thought it was brilliant, but I think anything that either of them do is brilliant, so I know my own opinion doesn’t amount to much.


Feeling slightly better; a little more calm, now. I think I’ll play The Sims for a while, then clean my room and gather my things for tomorrow’s classes. I suppose I could attempt to see this quarter off on the right foot.

1 comment » | On Me, Rant

Happy to have some quiet time

March 24th, 2006 — 11:24pm

No work or school tomorrow and no assignments to complete. I can actually play the sims without being slightly stressed because I have a million other things to do.

I bought Pepsi today to cure my caffeine headache from the caffeine addiction I have developed this week. I’m currently on soda number three and interestingly, I am feeling kind of tired, although I have been up for quite some time.

Oh well, two glorious days of Spring Break, then it is back to the grind.

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