Show Me Your Naked Side

Photo by Darius Bashar on Unsplash

A recent story on brought back a memory from a college art class lecture. Or maybe it was a photography class. It’s been so long I can’t remember. Anyway, I remember learning the concept of Naked Versus Nude in art.

A nude image depicts a person flawlessly. Smooth skin. Flowing hair. No scars or imperfections. Glossy.

In contrast, a naked image reveals who a person really is. Lumps and bumps. Sweat. Grit. Raw and unfiltered. The person may gaze back at us with a this is me expression.

What prompted my trip down memory lane? My good friend Christopher Robin’s story titled No Matter How Sexy Someone is…

Chris’s humorous story leans heavily on the reality of living with a real person, but in my mind, that’s where the rubber hits the road in a relationship. That’s living with someone’s naked side.

Because here’s the thing. A person’s glossy side may be initially attractive but that’s not what makes someone endearing.

The shiny nude version doesn’t reveal who someone is. That’s the cleaned-up ready-for-church side. To truly know who someone is we must see their naked side. The side with messy hair. The side that exposes their humanness.

The comfort of a relationship happens on the naked side — the side where we can be ourselves. We can relax. Be vulnerable. Authentic.

Deep love and acceptance live on the naked side. To get there, we gotta dive below the surface. Peel back layers. Reveal our naked side.

Who’s under that shine?

Whatcha got in there?

a curious firefly, © 2022

This story was originally published on Medium as part of a 250-word story challenge. I think this clocked in at 255.

The Awkwardness of Being Me

Photo by Johnny McClung on Unsplash

I’m an awkward person.

I often respond with a “You, too’’ when the waiter says, “Enjoy your meal.” When we celebrate someone’s birthday at work, I’m the one who coordinates their birthday lunch. The birthday person will thank me and I’ll say, “Thanks for having a birthday.”

Really. I say stuff like that.

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Wearing the Crown of Self-Worth

Photo by Larm Rmah on Unsplash

Alas, there’s the sound. The queen requests her tea.”

I watched as my friend Ray poured hot water into a tall white mug over a bag of Earl Grey tea. He smiled at me then padded softly into the bedroom where his wife Bonnie lay rousing from sleep. It’s a ritual they do every morning — Ray being an early riser and Bonnie needing a nudge to greet the day. She gently calls and he answers by bringing her a cup of hot tea.

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My Soul Knew My Word For The Year

Diana | Image by Prof. George Sturm

As I mentioned in a previous post, a few years ago I started a habit of choosing a word for the year. The word then becomes a motto or a theme I’d like to practice.

The year I went through my divorce, my word was release. It felt like the right word after so many years of struggling to make my marriage work. I needed to release all of the things that no longer worked for me.

Last year my word was explore. With COVID still on the rampage, I figured at least the great outdoors would be open. ‘Get out and explore’ became my motto.

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We Believe What We Do

Photo by Tamas Tuzes-Katai on Unsplash

Devotion does not end at a shrine or image. It is only authentic when it reaches all the way into ourselves and into our lifestyle with an utterly transforming power.” 

— David Richo, The Sacred Heart of the World.

In the book, All Our Wrong Todays by Elan Mastai, the main character’s sister Greta has a simple philosophy of life–we believe what we do. According to her, our belief system reflects how we spend our time each day.

To demonstrate this, she created an app called MapU. It begins by asking us to list our values and other issues near and dear to us.

What do we value most? Would we type in Health? Equality? Justice? Spirituality?

This is what we say we believe.

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Curious Questions #16 & 17: What’s Your Word for 2022 and Can You Help with Mine?

Diana by Prof. George Sturm

Last year, I wrote a post about a friend who chooses a word for the new year instead of making resolutions. I love this idea and for the past few years, I’ve done the same. Last year, my word was explore and I must say my year lived up to my word.

I discovered a number of new hiking and biking trails and took a great solo trip to explore Door County, WI–a place I’d always wanted to visit.

I’ve also spent a lot of time this year exploring meditation on my own and in a group setting. Both have proved to be quite beneficial and rewarding.

And I’ve been exploring another platform for my writing and have posted a number of articles there. Needless to say, in exploring that site I’ve been neglecting this one. It’s been hard to keep up with both.

Continue reading “Curious Questions #16 & 17: What’s Your Word for 2022 and Can You Help with Mine?”