Get to Know Me: You Hear Something Fall in the Middle of the Night

I’m a member of an author/book reader facebook group, and the admins ask great questions. I decided to turn some of the questions into a “get to know me” series. I would also love to hear your answers to the questions posed in the series. Thanks Helen for asking such fun questions!

What do you do when you hear something fall in the middle of the night, and your are in bed asleep?

I’ve been a single mom for 15 years now, so it’s just me to check things out. I can usually tell if it can be ignored, and I will just go back to sleep.

However, one night many years ago, I heard this loud cracking (like glass) sound. I went to the kitchen thinking something had fallen. I could not find what it was until the next morning when I walked into the bathroom. The glass surrounding the shower had shattered. Never knew what made it happen …

What about you?

Blessings,
Camilla
See It. Share It. BE IT … Spread Love Everywhere You Go!

“Words of Alchemy”, published December 2019, is a free-verse poetry memoir covering the last 6 years of my life. The poetry of nature, the poetry of healing, the poetry of appreciation, the poetry of love, in one beautiful book.

Amazing news! My 19 year old daughter, Lillian Darnell’s debut book, “Where Would You Fly and Other Magical Stories” was published January 2018. Learn more and order here

Wonderfully exciting news! My 15 year old son, Thomas Darnell‘s book, Biggest Little Photographer is published. Be inspired! Learn more and order here.

Reblog: Memories: Tahiti With Aerosmith While Touring Great Britain With a 1976 Mississippi Map

November 16 2020

Memories: Millennium Tahiti Cruise With Aerosmith and Billy Idol While Touring Great Britain With a 1976 Mississippi State Map

Thomas received a Victrola for his birthday, and I have been looking for an old 45 record I used to have. Haven’t found it yet, but, finding all kinds of fun stuff. That time I WON a 12 day Tahiti cruise! Not only that. The Millennium cruise. That. Was. Fun.

 

Still haven’t found it. But, think I’ve figured out why I’m half deaf and have neck problems. And, why do I still have these?

I actually have very little memory of being at each of these concerts. So, a good thing I’ve got the receipts.

I actually didn’t get to see much of the INXS concert! The folks I went with were determined to find a way to sneak backstage, and we spent most of the concert trying to find a way. Crazy Fools! Hahahaha!

I just remembered that I loved The Cult, too. I’m almost positive I saw them in concert …

… This was one of my favorite songs. Loved dancing to this one!

I could have sworn it was with all these other “memories”. No luck yet. But found the mementos from the trip to England and Scotland in 2000. That trip was a mixture of fun, beauty, awe, and stress. The person I traveled with assumed they’d be able to easily drive us around!!! I was tasked with navigating and didn’t get to enjoy the scenery. Overall, it was amazing, though!

 

Okay. The 45 record was not in my little wooden chest of treasures. However, if anyone’s looking for a 1976 Official Highway map for Mississippi, I’ve got you covered. WTF?!

I hope you enjoyed this trip down the Camilla Memory Lane! HA! To see the original post on The Team TLC website, go here …

Memories: Millennium Tahiti Cruise With Aerosmith and Billy Idol While Touring Great Britain With a 1976 Mississippi State Map

Spotlight in The Miramichi Reader – Showcase Interview with Camilla

Thanks to Bill for the space on The Miramichi Reader!

Welcome back to a new Showcase interview! Today we visit with Camilla Downs (Camilla is pronounced like Pamela), a poet, photographer, and founder of Meeting the Authors, itself a showcase of international writers. Camilla, what a treat to showcase a showcaser! Welcome.

Follow the link to read the full article …

Bill Arnott’s Showcase Interviews: Camilla Downs

Throwback Post: The Bones I Drag Home

**THROWBACK POST**

June 10 2018:

My heart overflows with gratitude to all of you for cheering me on and supporting me with the bones I drag home!! It means more than could ever be expressed with mere words and IS the fuel that keeps me going during times of discouragement.

Thank you for getting it and thank you for knowing that your comments, likes, shares, and cheers light my world when I need it and even when I don’t need it.

This “thank you” was sparked by the attached passage I read this morning in a book titled, Walking in This World by Julia Cameron. She talks about all forms of art; including writing. Oceans of love to all of you! xoxo

Walking in this World Book Pages 6.10.18 #1 Walking in this World Book Pages 6.10.18 #2

**UPDATE June 29 2021** – I’m happy I came across this draft post from 2018. It is timeless in my opinion. An artist is partly fueled by encouraging feedback from others. Such a meaningful post! 

Blessings,
Camilla
See It. Share It. BE IT … Spread Love Everywhere You Go!

“Words of Alchemy”, published December 2019, is a free-verse poetry memoir covering the last 6 years of my life. The poetry of nature, the poetry of healing, the poetry of appreciation, the poetry of love, in one beautiful book.

Amazing news! My 19 year old daughter, Lillian Darnell’s debut book, “Where Would You Fly and Other Magical Stories” was published January 2018. Learn more and order here

Wonderfully exciting news! My 15 year old son, Thomas Darnell‘s book, Biggest Little Photographer is published. Be inspired! Learn more and order here.

Get to Know Me: What’s Your Grossest Bug Story?

I’m a member of an author/book reader facebook group, and the admins ask great questions. I decided to turn some of the questions into a “get to know me” series. I would also love to hear your answers to the questions posed in the series. Thanks Helen for asking such fun questions!

When I was in junior high we went to Grand Isle, Louisiana (way, way, way down in da bayou) to go fishing. In the place we stayed I kept seeing cockroaches scurrying around, HUGE cockroaches.

I was afraid to go to sleep, burying myself in my sleeping bag, hoping they’d stay out. As I was falling asleep, I heard them flying around! 😱 I immediately zipped my sleeping bag around my entire body. I didn’t care if I could barely breathe. I was not having a flying cockroach come near touching my body! 😂🤣

Thank goodness there are NO cockroaches in Reno, Nevada, where I’ve lived since 2006. However, I grew up in the deep South … Jackson, MS and Houma, LA. Just in case anyone needs to defend themselves from cockroaches, here’s a pro-tip: Aqua Net hairspray does the job!! These days I relocate bugs and insects, rather than squish them, and I’m not sure how I’d handle cockroaches should they make an appearance. Ha!

What about you?

Blessings,
Camilla
See It. Share It. BE IT … Spread Love Everywhere You Go!

“Words of Alchemy”, published December 2019, is a free-verse poetry memoir covering the last 6 years of my life. The poetry of nature, the poetry of healing, the poetry of appreciation, the poetry of love, in one beautiful book.

Amazing news! My 19 year old daughter, Lillian Darnell’s debut book, “Where Would You Fly and Other Magical Stories” was published January 2018. Learn more and order here

Wonderfully exciting news! My 15 year old son, Thomas Darnell‘s book, Biggest Little Photographer is published. Be inspired! Learn more and order here.

Reblog: The 15th Birthday for Thomas Darnell

November 13 2020

Happy 15th Birthday, Thomas Darnell!!

Thank you ….

for making me laugh
for intelligent, spirited conversation
for running errands with me
for helping me
for sharing your love of history with me
for sharing your passion for politics, our world, and humanity with me
for the hugs you share with me
for sharing your spirit with me
for helping me to learn about true love
for choosing me.

You are my heart. I am so very proud of you. I love you!!!

We had an intimate, masked, socially distanced celebration with The Romano Duo and Robert, graced with absolutely divine vegan cupcakes from Batch Cupcakery. I took my selfie after everyone left! Ha!

Thomas received some great gifts!

A basketball, volleyball (so we can use the great courts here), a shirt, a hoodie, a desk chair, a homemade card from Lillian, a turntable, an album, and a photo book of our date days over the past year. I still need to make a homemade card or poem for him.

   

Follow the link to see more photos …

Happy 15th Birthday to Thomas Darnell

Pride Month 2021 – I Support You and I Am With You


(Photo by Steve Johnson/Pexels)

I have chosen to share a tender, vulnerable post. I received the nudge to share this a year ago, this month. Uncertainty caused me to hold back. When reading a birthday twin Sista’s latest post this morning, I was reminded that I do not always need to know why I’m being nudged to share something personal and tender. How it is received by you, is entirely your business, not mine.

Ignorance is bliss … Well, not always. Ignorance can be selfish, ignorance can be hurtful to those you love, to yourself, and to your fellow humans.

I wrote this post a year ago, June 2020. I didn’t post it then as I’m still in learning, questioning, and letting-myself-know-the-true-me mode. I kept having thoughts about what others would think if I shift from what I’d written at an earlier time.

Yet, isn’t that what some of what life is about. The more we learn, the more we explore, the more we experience, it can certainly shift our perspective, our lifestyle. Especially when we have been brought up to believe that certain ways of living and believing are wrong. It’s only when we educate ourselves, in addition to opening our hearts and minds to others that we come to know the absurdity of many of the “wrongs” we were taught as children.

Another reason I did not post this a year ago, is this niggling feeling that it will turn others away. I will “lose” folks. The niggling feeling is not as strong as it used to be. But, it’s still there. Actually, as I press the publish button on this post, both of these reasons are there, giving me butterflies in my stomach.

At my 19 year old daughter’s urging, I’m stepping out of my comfort zone, being vulnerable, with worries that I may get this wrong in some way. Staying in my comfort zone keeps me “safe”, allowing me not to commit to anything, or anyone.

She feels that I should share what I’ve come to know about myself. I’m the one who taught her to always be herself, and not to worry about what others think. She’s handed that back to me, telling me that it will feel good to get it out. I’m not saying that I feel un-good (I’m using a made up word as nothing else fits!) by not sharing, just that it will feel good to share, to be open and authentic. So, here it goes …

Three years ago I realized that I needed to educate myself about my brothers and sisters of the LGBTQ+ community. I had never taken the time to do this in the past as I didn’t think I needed to know more, mistakenly believing it didn’t involve me. That changed when someone very close to me, confided that they are a part of this community.

I knew that I needed to be educated, so I went right to researching. I love this person with all my heart and wanted to be available for them. I also wanted to be able to support them.

I began reading books and researching online. I learned as much as I could. I unlearned whatever needed to be unlearned, shedding layers of muck, mostly thoughts and ideas I had adopted as a child, from society and the adults around me. Here’s to unlearning the homophobia some of us were consciously, or unconsciously, taught growing up!

In doing this research and releasing judgments and thoughts that were not my own, I learned something about myself. Something that had been there for a while, but that I immediately dismissed. Whenever it came up, I felt guilt and shame, coupled with feeling wrong.

Wherever it came from, society or the adults around me, I grew up thinking that it was wrong. Which, incidentally, has been an overriding them in my healing journey this past 15 years. I thought that just about everything I did, I did wrong. “You’re doing it wrong” had been a constant theme running through my thoughts. This theme no longer haunts me as I spent many years walking into it, working my way through all its baggage.

Fast forward to around April 2020. Many of you know of, or personally know, my special needs daughter, Lillian. She’s 19 years old and graduated June 2019 .. YAY! It was in April of last year that she let me know she was in love with one of her female friends. She has since come out as bisexual.

Those of you connected with Lillian know that she has not been shy about letting people know this. She has more guts and courage than I’ve ever known, the guts and courage for being herself, and for letting others know who she is, no matter what. Up until I had reached my mid 40’s, I hadn’t the courage to speak my mind, for fear of turning others away. Lillian inspires me. If she can do it, so can I.

I have only ever been in relationships with straight cisgender men. About two years ago, I realized that a person’s biological sex or gender-identity is the least important factor for me in sparking an attraction. Very important note: This does NOT mean I am attracted to all people.

What creates an attraction for me is a mixture of the energy one exudes, personality, demeanor, political leanings, mutual interests, and physical characteristics. I’m also attracted to people of any skin color or nationality. This is another “wrong” I had to unlearn. I’ve had forty something years of telling myself that certain things I thought and felt were wrong. I’m done living my life that way. FFS!! I’m 51 years old. I will believe and trust myself.

Who I am attracted and drawn to may shift once I begin dating again, as this is unfamiliar territory for me since I have not dated, or been with anyone, in about 13 years. What is clear is that I won’t know until I know, so I’m not pinning myself to any labels just yet.

I mean, perhaps this is part of the reason that I have been on no dates for the past 13 years. I have never been in a healthy, loving relationship with another. Maybe I needed the time to heal, to learn about myself, and to become comfortable with my healed and authentic self. All this long-ass post to say that I’m coming out. I’m not clear on exactly what I’m coming out as, yet, there it is. I don’t know if I will ever have clarity, especially if I’m not dating! Honestly, the thought of dating is not appealing to me at all. Meeting people, getting to know others, does appeal to me.

I’m surrendering to however this may unfold. As this writing closes, I realize I’ve written it in furtherance of helping me be okay and embracing not quite knowing to which “label” I belong. Honestly, now that I release this blog post that took a year to write, perfect, and publish, I am absolutely okay with this. I’m a road less traveled, outside the box, rebel, go the opposite direction as everyone else type person. This suits me. This is The Way for me.

Ignorance is bliss … Well, not in all cases. Ignorance can be selfish, ignorance can be hurtful to those you love, to yourself, and to your fellow humans.

If you do not wish to be hurtful, please educate yourself.

There you have it. For those that stay with me, thank you. I love and appreciate you. For those that decide to part ways, thank you. I love and appreciate you. Please educate yourself, take the time to unlearn crazy shit some of us picked up as a child, youth, and young adult. xoxo

P.S. Lillian approves of this post.

Follow up thoughts: That’s my motto: “Always, sometimes, maybe posting vulnerable shit” …. Or something like that … And, over here trying to be a good human, getting some things right along the way. It’s pretty wild how sharing vulnerable aspects of ourself can be so empowering!

Blessings,
Camilla
See It. Share It. BE IT … Spread Love Everywhere You Go!

“Words of Alchemy”, published December 2019, is a free-verse poetry memoir covering the last 6 years of my life. The poetry of nature, the poetry of healing, the poetry of appreciation, the poetry of love, in one beautiful book.

Amazing news! My 19 year old daughter, Lillian Darnell’s debut book, “Where Would You Fly and Other Magical Stories” was published January 2018. Learn more and order here

Wonderfully exciting news! My 15 year old son, Thomas Darnell‘s book, Biggest Little Photographer is published. Be inspired! Learn more and order here.

Full of Imagination and Wonder – Where Would You Fly Review

Thank you to Helen for this beautiful review of Lillian’s book.

My review for Where Would You Fly? & Other Magical Stories by Lillian Darnell, 5/5 stars.

The first line of the blurb for this book reads:

Welcome to the radiant imagination of Lillian Darnell, a wonderful and unique human being, the kind who comes around only once in every 56,000 births, as she is missing the short arm of her 18th chromosome.

I thought it was the perfect introduction to my review. Her stories are full of imagination and wonder, as you see the world through her eyes from age 4 (written with a little help from her mum, Camilla) to age 16. Some are gentle guides to mindfulness, others to how to be happy, and most are delightful stories with fairies, unicorns, and magic.

I have to admit I found the Emotions and Feelings part particularly touching, where Lillian explores her own emotions while growing up. Her condition, and her journey which led to the publication of this book, are explained in the introduction by Camilla, who is also a wonderful poet, and a beautiful person. Her dedication to Lillian, and her son Thomas, is evident through the stories Lillian has written and the love she has for her family.

Every now and then it’s lovely to get away from the real world and travel to distant lands with mythical beings. Lillian’s book is a wonderful distraction that you can dip into every now and then, and it will put a smile on your face. Many thanks to Camilla, Lillian and Thomas for the chance to read Where Would You Fly?

Go here to see the review on Helen’s website …

#BookReview for Where Would You Fly? by Lillian Darnell

For more information about Where Would You Fly, go here …

http://www.WhereWouldYouFly.com

Blessings,
Camilla
See It. Share It. BE IT … Spread Love Everywhere You Go!

“Words of Alchemy”, published December 2019, is a free-verse poetry memoir covering the last 6 years of my life. The poetry of nature, the poetry of healing, the poetry of appreciation, the poetry of love, in one beautiful book.

Amazing news! My 19 year old daughter, Lillian Darnell’s debut book, “Where Would You Fly and Other Magical Stories” was published January 2018. Learn more and order here

Wonderfully exciting news! My 15 year old son, Thomas Darnell‘s book, Biggest Little Photographer is published. Be inspired! Learn more and order here.

Throwback Post: The Portal of Silence

I’m not sure when I originally wrote this, had to have been about 3 years ago. I submitted it to a poetry contest and then forgot about it.

The Portal of Silence

Love floats
with the wind.
Love brushes
by when one
least expects.

Divine love
surrounds all.
Divine love
is within all.

All is Divine Love.

Feels, at times,
love lands
with deep penetrating
painful thorns.

Bring oneself
into the stillness
into the silence,
one must.

To Know the pain,
to feel the pain.
to receive the gift
pain bears.

The Stillness.
The silence.
The doorway
of experiencing
pain as the portal.

The portal to Wisdom
The portal to Knowing
The portal to Freedom. -©Camilla Downs

Blessings,
Camilla
See It. Share It. BE IT … Spread Love Everywhere You Go!

“Words of Alchemy”, published December 2019, is a free-verse poetry memoir covering the last 6 years of my life. The poetry of nature, the poetry of healing, the poetry of appreciation, the poetry of love, in one beautiful book.

Amazing news! My 19 year old daughter, Lillian Darnell’s debut book, “Where Would You Fly and Other Magical Stories” was published January 2018. Learn more and order here

Wonderfully exciting news! My 15 year old son, Thomas Darnell‘s book, Biggest Little Photographer is published. Be inspired! Learn more and order here.

Get to Know Me: What is Your Favorite Season and Why

I’m a member of an author/book reader facebook group, and the admins ask great questions. I decided to turn some of the questions into a “get to know me” series. I would also love to hear your answers to the questions posed in the series. Thanks Helen for asking such fun questions!

What is Your Favorite Season and Why

I love them all equally, for the change each brings. Fall as it relates to winding down, letting go. Winter as it relates to being sedentary, hibernating. Spring as it relates to the awakening, birth of the new. Summer for the brightness and joy.

What about you?

Blessings,
Camilla
See It. Share It. BE IT … Spread Love Everywhere You Go!

“Words of Alchemy”, published December 2019, is a free-verse poetry memoir covering the last 6 years of my life. The poetry of nature, the poetry of healing, the poetry of appreciation, the poetry of love, in one beautiful book.

Amazing news! My 19 year old daughter, Lillian Darnell’s debut book, “Where Would You Fly and Other Magical Stories” was published January 2018. Learn more and order here

Wonderfully exciting news! My 15 year old son, Thomas Darnell‘s book, Biggest Little Photographer is published. Be inspired! Learn more and order here.