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fragments

Today is a be still kind of day for me.  What a treasure!  Some people want or need to be entertained, or constantly on the go, doing something, going somewhere, being with someone.  I get so few moments to just be still.  I sit in silence in my living room, looking at the ceiling, looking at the sky through the skylights, looking at the colors and placement of the furnishings and decor, breathing deeply and simply being peaceful.  It’s a friendly room.  It’s nice to just be still for a moment.  I have a thousand things I could or should do, but I’m not going to.  I’m just going to sit still for a little while.

I love my cedar ceiling. Love!

~*~*~*~

I find it tragically amusing that I posted in October about not falling apart, when I realized yesterday that I’ve fallen more apart than I had any idea!  I’m glad that I can amuse myself, even if it’s in a tragic manner.  Imagine the amusement I can attain when I’m rockin’ my world!  My core, the essence of me, always wants to find the light and bright side of things.  It may take me a while, but I’m always looking for it.

~*~*~*~

I’ve been thinking about perspective.  It’s so easy (for me) to be caught off guard and lose perspective.   I can get stuck wondering what I did or said that caused a given action or comment, and jump to some conclusion that may or may not be valid.  Or else I can’t come up with an answer at all, and I am completely flummoxed.  In my professional life, when I get stuck trying to solve something, usually if I drop it for a while, rest, and come back again with fresh eyes, I can figure it out.  I will then chastise myself for not dropping it earlier, thus saving myself the time, anguish and frustration of beating my head against the wall.  In my personal life, if I could at least remember to tell myself that problem solving is problem solving, and if I could remember that it always works well to just let it rest for a minute, allow myself to regroup, then clarity will more than likely follow shortly.  If only.  I sure would save myself unnecessary anguish.

~*~*~*~

There has been a lot of passion and agitation floating about regarding Ferguson, and I don’t know anything about the issue, other than some people I love are passionately impacted in one direction and some people I love are passionately impacted in the opposite direction.  I have absolutely no opinion because I don’t know the situation, but my heart aches and strains over the anguish and passion that others are struggling with over this very public issue.  Politics.  I can not abide.  The mere thought causes literal gut wrenching sensations.  It’s visceral.  Absolutely and completely.

~*~*~*~

Loose ends.  I have such a strong desire for conclusions, answers, solutions, closure –understanding.  Maybe that’s the bottom line.  Understanding.  For some reason, loose ends leave me feeling frustrated and incomplete.  It’s probably an OCD thing.  Sort of like writing a sentence and not using a period to punctuate the end.  That would drive me NUTS!  The thing is, it drives me bonkers in almost all elements of my life.  If a conversation just drops off in thin air, with no apparent reason why, I’m left wondering why.  I suppose it boils down to order vs. chaos.  A loose end represents chaos in my world.  A conclusion represents order.  With understanding, closure, conclusion, summary, completion, whatever it is called, I can put whatever it is away, and it will no longer clutter my mind and emotions.

~*~*~*~

Sometimes the accumulation of loose ends and lost perspective cause me to doubt myself, and I get turned around, upside down.  When this happens, I have to somehow retreat and regroup.  It’s so hard to do, when you’re stuck!  Sort of like trying to swim against the current.  I visualize myself, a lone figure, and I visualize myself spinning, arms spread, spinning around and around, sending waves of light, love, comfort, and harmony out from my extended hands, weaving a tornado of protection around me.  I stand in the center of stillness and catch my breath and gather my strength until I can emerge.  As I describe this, it brings to mind a scene from Guardians of the Galaxy in which Groot weaves himself into a cocoon of protection around his friends.  Like that.

~*~*~*~

I really should never doubt myself.  I should be more vigilant and remember, always remember, that I am empathic and absorb the emotions of those around me.  So often I get slammed by other people’s emotions, and it takes me some time to realize those aren’t MY emotions.  Those feels I feel, yes, but those feels aren’t always mine!  Empathy is a beautiful gift, and I truly love my ability to connect with people on such a deep level, but I just need to learn how to distinguish my feels from someone else’s feels.   I suppose that’s the thing about empathy though.  Those feels become my feels.  Oh, the feels.  All the feels!!  I am so often battered by the feels, like ocean waves crashing against a rocky shore.

~*~*~*~

Finding joy.  Gratitude.  It’s the simple things in life that bring me the most joy.  I grew some vegetables this year.  I planted multicolored carrots, and yielded only two.  Two!  The beets did well.  I love beets.  I also grew a mystery vegetable.  At first I thought it was a pumpkin, but it turns out it was an acorn squash.  I don’t even remember ever having squash, because I don’t like squash, but somehow it ended up in the compost, and when I built my garden, I added some compost.  That particular seed sprouted and thrived, so I decided to let it live.  It actually completely overtook the entire garden box, and produced several squash.  The slugs ate most of them, but it yielded one respectable squash.

garden bounty

I decided to take my end of season garden yield and make roasted veggies for my contribution to the Thanksgiving feast.  I roasted garlic and used fresh thyme and rosemary from my herb garden, and made a buttery spread.  I had an inordinately grand time, gathering the veggies from my garden, cleaning, prepping, and cooking them.  It felt so complete!  So wholesome!  And believe it or not, the squash actually tasted good to me.  Wonders shall never cease.

roasted and color coordinated

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I’ve been struggling quite a lot lately.  I mentioned tragic amusement above…   Anyway, I’ve been thinking of all the various monumental life changes taking place, contributing to the struggle.  Work.  That’s a huge change.  The transitional dust most likely won’t be settled until at least next summer, so there remains quite a long road ahead.  I need to gird up.  Along with that, my niece, sort of the daughter I never had, graduated high school and moved across the country this fall.  This had a much deeper effect on me than I had any idea, and I was completely unprepared for the emotions that would surface.  Closing chapters of a long relationship, opening and closing and trying to navigate the waters of forming a new relationship leave me worn and depleted.  Frustrations over the superficiality of people in the singles world.  I see deep seated fears and insecurities in men manifest in various ways.  They probably have no idea of these things themselves, because they are living only on the surface.  But that’s a whole other probably very long winded post for another time.  Countless hours spent in traffic.  Darkness when I rise, darkness when I return.  Single parenting struggles, wanting my children to grow into gracious, kind, responsible, confident, and respectable men, and not knowing quite how to accomplish that.  The responsibilities of life.  I have a full plate.  It can be daunting and overwhelming if I think about it much.  That’s why I like to slow down and be still.  I get the most joy out of the simple things.  I go outside and feed my alpaca girls, chastise them for fighting each other for the lion’s share, and wander around the pasture, picking up their poop.  It’s therapeutic, really, to trudge about outside, rake and bucket in hand.  The wind in the trees releases the most wonderful cedar scent.  I feel happy.  I am very blessed.  I live a beautiful life.  I am full of love.  I love.  I am loved.

happiness is a rake and a bucket and a pasture full of poop

Posted in food, health, me, men, mental health, politics, relationships, thankfulness, work.

the end of an era

It has been a long time since I’ve written about my work.  I maintain a level of ambiguity, so as not to jeopardize my professional life.  Last spring we underwent a massive restructuring, and the announcement came like a sucker punch to the gut.  Unexpected.

that day cometh like a thief in the night…

A year later, doubled over and trying to catch our breath from the first sucker punch, we took another jab.

moving and shaking…

So there we were, in the ring, so to speak, engaged in a fight that we didn’t ask for and didn’t want.  I wasn’t (yet) personally affected, but I could see the writing on the wall.

carrying the weight of a word on her shoulders…

From my perspective, if I take a step back, it looks like corporate leadership behaves like a bunch of kids playing pick up sticks, only we are the sticks.  Throw the lot up in the air, see where they land, and try to piece things back together.  Who gets the most sticks before the stack collapses?  Winner!!!!  What about the remaining stack?  Yep.  That’s us.  That’s where we are now.  Discarded on a whim.

I don’t remember when they made the announcement, but they did.  And lo it came to pass.  The ax did fall.  I don’t recall the exact date, but there is one (May or June 2015), and on that day, the lights will be shut off.  We shall cease to be.

So it’s been a mad scramble.  The ship is sinking and the rats are jumping.

I thought about looking for other work, but decided not to give in to fear and uncertainty, and not to desert my team.  My specialized team consists of only three people, one of whom is new.  Our young padawan, we call him.  We are training him in the ways of the masters.  Ha!  Seriously, though.  My partner IS the master.  He is literally a world expert in his field.  I am the other master, and I am most decidedly not a world expert in that field, but I bring to the table those proficiencies that make our team a complete, high power unit.  We are a little tiny team of three, serving the entire company of thousands upon thousands.  We could be considered a bottle neck, which in business is not a positive thing, or we could be considered a vital asset.  Both are true.  Single threadedness carries a lot of business risk.  If the thread breaks, the business can be severely impacted.  It brings to mind the saying, “Don’t put all your eggs in one basket.”  Not that the company truly recognizes its vital assets.  I’ve probably blathered on about that elsewhere in this blog.

Even with the leadership making these changes, we are still in business NOW, and we, individually, care about what we do and have a personal sense of responsibility to see things through.  So we have been pressing along, trying to keep afloat amidst the flotsam and jetsam that we are immersed in, simultaneously working on marketing ourselves, making our little niche visible to the echelons so that they will recognize that it would behoove them to preserve our function.  Miraculously, we have succeeded, and we have been given a life raft.  We’ve climbed aboard, soaking wet, and are paddling our way against the current towards the safety of the big ship.

~*~*~*~*~

I am grateful to have a job!  Grateful that I didn’t actually have to hit the streets and look for something different.  At the same time, these many months since the spring of 2013 have been so exhausting.  It’s been like a long and drawn out sickness in which bits of pieces of life connections are dying, and with each loss there is mourning and sorrow.  I’ve spent my life with these people.  This relationship has been thriving for 28 years, and now it’s nearly over.  The goodbyes are so hard.  I walk down the hall and peer into the cubicles and see only a few scattered faces here and there.  It’s empty.  It’s sad.  It’s like gazing upon a hospital ward during a war or a plague, with a few mangled hollow-eyed bedridden people holding on for dear life amidst rows and rows of empty beds left by those who  have departed.

A job is a job, and I can do almost anything, really, so the trauma is not so much about the job itself, other than the huge expectations levied upon us when we are already loaded past most people’s breaking points.  Even so, I’m a performer, and I will perform.  I can do that.  I will do that.

The trauma I am suffering is the loss of life, the life we have spent together for the last 28 years.  There is a lot of life that takes place in that many years.  It’s being forced to say goodbye.  I’ve been dragging my feet, not wanting it to end.  My new desk is thankfully in the next tower, rather than another city, so I’ve had the luxury of dragging my feet over the move.  I’ve been making the transition last as long as possible.  Everything besides my computer itself is moved, but I park my body stubbornly in the spot I’ve inhabited for the last twenty years, just so that I can see the occasional familiar face and hear the occasional familiar voice.  These are my people.  I love them.  Even though we have little to no connection once we leave the office, we are connected in the depths of our selves, from the years upon years upon years of time that we’ve spent together.  But it’s time to cut the cord and it’s time to leave.  I think that next week I will have to occupy the new desk.  I don’t even know how to express how this makes me feel.  It’s the end of an era.  I am a frazzled, emotional mess, and have been for quite some time now.

I’ve done all that I could.  I need to make peace with this and let it go.

It’s been so hard for me, and I don’t really know HOW to make that peace and let it go.  So I’m writing it out, hoping it will help.  Maybe it’s only something that time will ease, the way a scar will ever so slowly fade as it heals.

I don’t know.  But I have to move on and find new joys, rather than remain stuck under this cloud of sorrow.

I am so, so tired.

Posted in depression, me, mental health, work.

courage

Today I’m self medicating with a double Bloody Mary.

the face of depression

I actually took some video footage of myself in this state. Now THAT would be an impressive display of courage, to post that. I don’t know how to post video to this blog, so I suppose I’ll save myself the embarrassment, anyway.

One of the recent headlines in The Onion was, “Seasonal Depression To Take Over For Chronic Depression For A Few Months.”  It’s so true that it’s funny.  Or else it’s so funny that it’s true.  Either way.

When this happens to me, I start scouring through my blog history, looking at dates and seasons, trying to figure out when these points hit me.  It seems like they are regular.  The holidays approach.  Of course something is likely to try to take hold.  I read through the archives looking for tips on what I’ve done before.  I start thinking of digging out all my long expired leftover antidepressants and deciding whether or not to try one again.  It’s so exhausting, this mood cycling.  Just today, I don’t even know how many highs and lows I’ve had.  I’ve certainly cried a bucket of tears and felt the grip of anguish.  It’s ridiculous.  Mother fucking ridiculous.

I’m practicing new vile vocabulary.  Invoking the King’s Speech, as it were.  I’m expanding my comfort zone to boldly go where no sueeeus has gone before.  I mean, look at that.  I actually spelled it out, instead of a phonetic representation which was the best I could muster in the 2011 post.  At that time I’d tried an antidepressant as well.  And posted a forlorn picture as well.  Some things never change.  See?  It’s a cycle.  And I’m so TIRED of it!

Granted, much of it may be due to general exhaustion.  I don’t sleep enough.  I don’t rest enough.  I don’t get enough good nutrition. Although I did just have two full servings of vegetables in my V8 based Bloody Mary.

Ha!  My sense of humor remains intact!  We thank the holy heavens for that!!

I have SO MANY thought fragments that I want to capture.  If I could write them down, I think I could feel like I had at least a little grip on them, and if I could do that, maybe I could make some progress.  But instead, I reach a point of exhaustion where I have to just call it a day.  I have no further choice.   I will wake  up to a new day and be somewhat refreshed and will be able to move forward.

When I reach this point, I generally do some research into antidepressants and pros and cons.  I try to remember which ones that I’ve tried worked the best.  So today I was doing some research and stumbled across an article that irritated me.  “People get into a spiral where they can’t help themselves. You need to take responsibility for your own depression, but if you are given antidepressants and sent away, that’s never going to happen.”  Take responsibility?  For my own depression?  I don’t know why, but that statement nearly made my blood boil. Yes, I’m in a spiral.  Yes, it’s difficult.  (I am WRITING about it, at least).  No, I don’t want it to happen to me.  No, I don’t ask for it.  It happens.  It just does.  I don’t think it’s a behavioral thing.  I don’t think it’s a choice.  If it were a choice, I’d choose giddy happiness for my standard.  I would never choose to feel the way I feel now.

The more that it happens, the more I”m convinced that there’s something wrong inside my brain.  That’s the thing that I want to fix.  That’s the thing that needs to be addressed.  Why is there such a stigma with taking antidepressants or anti anxiety medications? Why does the mere notion scream, FAILURE??!!!  I have allergies.  I take antihistamines every day.  Why can’t I mentally allow myself the notion of taking an anti-anxiety medication daily, just like I take my antihistamines?  I can accept that I have allergies.  Why can’t I accept that I have depression?

I’m so, so, so exhausted.  At least I know that with the dawn of each new day there is relief and renewed hope.  But that erodes as the day progresses, and more than likely I’ll find myself in a similar state tomorrow night.

I’m so tired.

Posted in depression, me. Tagged with .

all good reasons

It’s interesting and amazing to me, the way music speaks. I have been listening to a new mix on Pandora with a feeder song called Lost In My Mind by The Head and The Heart. It’s classified as indie pop with folk influences. Whatever it is, I’m LOVING it!  So the mix is playing in my ear for hours upon hours, and maybe in some ways that’s not so good, because there does happen to be quite a bit of melancholic groove going on, and that may not be the absolute best medicine for one prone to melancholy…  …but I LOVE this music!!  Sometimes the melodies hit me, and sometimes it’s the words that make a short circuit from my brain to my heart or from my heart to my soul. I don’t know.  With this particular song, the sound was a soothing background presence, and then I realized the words were speaking to me with words that I’ve been thinking of and writing about recently.  It’s no surprise, really.  Music is an expression of the human condition, and there’s nothing new under the sun.  So of course mankind has been experiencing the same thoughts and feels since the dawn of time.  Of course there is music that speaks to any situation.  It’s a tie that binds, and it’s a beautiful thing.  Oh, how I love music!!!

lost in my mind

All Good Reasons
Barefoot Truth

Holding on to what we’ve got
‘Cause what we’ve got is who we are
And who we are is everything
When we’re turned around, all out of luck
I make my way back to the start
You know that’s where I’ll plant my feet

Life is calling, but you need healing now
For all good reasons, change is coming

Change is coming for all good reasons now
But you need healing, for life is calling

So hold up your head, think of brighter days
Who cares they don’t look at you the same way
You make up the time, well this ain’t the end
You better let it flow, you better let ‘em end

So sing it loud, let your voice fill up this space
Cause if the energy’s good, it’s gonna take the place
Don’t fight it, invite it, gonna set you free
Step into the light of this happening

‘Cause if it’s good, it feels right
Love will take us to the fight, yea
The more we give, the less we take
I’ve never felt so, so awake

Cause life is calling, but you need healing now
For all good reasons, change is coming
Change is coming for all good reasons now
But you need healing, for life is calling

So hold up your head, think of brighter days
Who cares they don’t look at you the same way
You make up the time, well this ain’t the end
You better let it flow, you better let ‘em end

Posted in me, music.

make like a tree and leave

I remember when we were kids there would be these  silly phrases we’d use.  Off like a prom dress (HA!  I was such a goody two shoes back then, so that phrase never applied to me…)  Dwayne the bathtub, I’m dwowning!  Make like a tree and leave.  Or maybe it was leaf.

Anyway.

It’s October, and the leaves are falling.  It’s October, and I’m not falling apart.  It’s October, and I’ve turned over a new leaf.  It’s October, and I’m rewriting the script.

amidst a rain of falling leaves

I don’t want to plummet to the abyss every October, because October holds so many monumental griefs for me.  I didn’t really plan it this way, but Providence made it such that new hope and new joys are embedded in October, and these things have begun to eclipse the griefs of other Octobers.

Thank God and His holy heavens for that.

I used to love October.  I used to revel in the crispness of the autumn air, and rejoice in the breathtaking colors that emerged on the leaves of the trees.  Oh, how I absolutely loved October.

But I lost my brother in October.  And I lost a very dear friend in October.  And another.  My marriage ended in October.  And just the other day, one of my dearest lifelong friends moved to the other side of the world.  I took her to the airport and said goodbye.  Will I ever see her again, face to face?  I don’t know.  I sure hope so, but I don’t know.  So you see, it’s so easy to get bogged down by the weight of October memories and grief.  In fact, September was very difficult for me, because October was looming.  I will admit, I had some moments of deep anxiety in September, but September has now gone.

amidst a glowing rain

These are all such weighty matters, these October milestones.  But it was October of last year that I began (in earnest) my journey back to me.  It is October, here and now, where I find myself in a good place.  I have much to be grateful for.  I have new friends, and a new and well embraced sense of community.  I have a new sense of acceptance, in which I am at peace with the life that I lead.  Whereas I acknowledge it’s not ideal, it is a beautiful life.  And who am I to truly know what it is that I want and need?  I have so much already.  Even if there is no such thing as Mr. RightForMe, I have some beautiful experiences to cherish forever.  If I were to die tomorrow, I’d go to my grave with a wealth of rich life experiences under my belt.  I have a renewed sense of hope.  I may not understand the circumstances under which it has been kindled, but it is very clear to me that hope prevails and that I have been called to simply trust.

love, forgive, hope

T R U S T

I am making peace with my self and the life that I lead.

~ * ~ * ~ * ~

A word about the cheesy art…

I think I painted that glowing figure in the 90s.  It’s very juvenile, but I was thinking of immersion.  Immersion in love, in healing rain, in tears, in golden leaves, in grace.  I suppose the same sorts of things I’m always thinking about.  And even in the darkness, there is the light of healing rain.

Above a doorway are words to live by.  It’s rather sloppy, and didn’t turn out as I’d envisioned.  I still like it, anyway.  One day I plan to remake this as a mosaic, rather than a word collage.

Posted in art, depression, family, love, me, men.

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Posted in love, me, men.

when oceans rise

I’ve written about ripples before, how one thing impacts another and waves move ever outward, the whispering breath of my spirit carried out into the world, brushing gently against all in its path.  A kiss on the horizon that finds its way back to me.

There is a song that moves my heart.  When I hear it, the strains fill me, move me, cover me, and touch my very soul.  Everything about it speaks to me, as though it was written just for me.  Not long ago, I mentioned this song in conversation, and remarked that it’s one of my favorites.  It comes up on my Pandora mix every once in a while, and it almost always makes me cry.  It just takes me to that place.  The other day, a friend shared this very song on Facebook, especially for me.  That ripple had made its way back to me.

Late at night, after the kids had gone to sleep, I sat cradled in the hammock swing on my porch, breathed in the crisp autumn air, and listened.  Over and again, I played that song.  Tears fell.  I went inside the music, and sobbed, from the very core of me, releasing my self from myself.  I thought about my life, and who I am.  I thought about what I want.  I thought about love, what it is, and where it comes from.  I thought about my place in this earth, the mother I am, the life I lead, the responsibilities I shoulder.  All the while, the music played, and tears rolled down my face.

I sobbed my heart out, and decided that it really doesn’t matter if the man who fits ever appears, because I’m beautiful through and through, in my heart of hearts where beauty matters.  In that place, I am pure and innocent, and in that place I am love.  It’s not about all the men who have gone before.  It’s not about anything but me.  In that place, I see my self.  I see someone who is worthy of my love.  I stood naked in front of my mirror, while the music played.  I touched myself.  I moved my hands all over my body, slowly, looking at the curves and the shadows, looking through unveiled eyes at something beautiful, as tears rolled down.

I must have listened to that song thirty times or more.  I cried my heart out, and touched myself, looked at myself with respect and regard, all the while loving myself.  I know who I am.  I saw myself, maybe for the first time, for the beautiful woman that I am.  I saw myself, perhaps, as those who love me see me.

A small spark flickered inside of me; a glimmer of life reborn.  Tears streamed down my face and I knew.

when oceans rise

I am healing.  I can heal.

Lead me where my trust is without borders.

Take me deeper than my feet could ever wander.

I will call upon your name.

Keep my eyes above the waves.

My soul will rest in your embrace.

I am yours and you are mine.

When oceans rise, my soul will rest in your embrace.

Fifteen, twenty, twenty five years, or more –scars from so very long ago.  I am healing.  God is speaking to me in ways that most people wouldn’t understand, in ripples and waves that make their way back to me.  I see where I am, and where I am going.  It likely won’t make sense to anybody but me, but it doesn’t have to.  This is my journey.  I am going to walk down this healing path for a while.

I am not afraid.

I am not alone.

Posted in chapters of my life, depression, ego, health, love, me, men, mental health, music, sorrow, thankfulness.

catching the deluge in a paper cup

I’m enjoying one of those rare moments in which I can sit by myself in the early afternoon sunshine, and let various thoughts drift back and forth through my mind.  It’s warm and there is the slightest breeze.  My furry cat girl has joined me on the swing that I placed in the middle of the pasture.  There is a chipmunk making the strangest sounds, flitting about a very tall tree trunk.  I thought it was a bird chirping, but no, it’s a chipmunk.  Maybe it’s a youngster and it’s stuck, or lost.  It’s a very tall tree, and the branches don’t begin for quite some time.  The cat and I gently rock back and forth and look at the alpacas.  I love my alpaca girls.  (I have five of them.  I will write about them one of these days…)

Hello, my name is Daphne. I'm very pretty, and I'm a prima donna. What do you expect? I'm so pretty. Everybody loves me. Even if I'm naughty.

Solitude is so rare for me, and so very valuable!  I take a mental inventory of the hundreds of things I could or should do.  I categorize things into those things that can be accomplished with others around, and things that can only be done when I’m alone.  I have to make the most of these few moments.  I make mental plans to take some vacation time so that I can work through some of the things that would help bring more order to my chaotic world.  But for now, I have two hours.  How will I spend them?

I spend them breathing.  I make myself a cup of tea.  I decide to write.  Writing is such a joy for me.  It helps me collect and better understand my thoughts and feelings.  It helps me regroup.

A word, a feeling, makes its way to the forefront of my mind.  Freedom.  There is freedom within.  There is freedom without.  Catch the deluge in a paper cup.  Moments like this are so rare for me.  I ponder the meaning and feeling of freedom.  It’s a wonderful feeling.  I can breathe.  The cares of the world aren’t with me, in this particular moment.  I am free from the burden of broken hearts.  A peacefulness drifts in and around me, and I immerse myself in the bliss.

Sunshine has a magical way of bursting through the darkest places.

I find myself wondering if it is possible to experience this feeling of freedom with others around.  More specifically, in a relationship.  It seems that so many people don’t understand the necessity for solitude.  It’s not a necessity for everyone, but it is for me.  Would it or could it be possible to live with someone and still feel or be free?

A counselor once showed me a simple Venn diagram about relating to people, and what constitutes healthy versus unhealthy overlap.   I think, for me, the overlapping area in an ideal relationship is fairly small.  I know, if I consider my closest relationships in life, such as with my sisters and closest friends, the overlapping area is very small.

finding the ideal...

I wonder about the attributes and characteristics of Mister RightForMe, if such a man exists.  But thoughts along those lines tend to take me down a path that brings back to mind thoughts and memories of attempted relationships and those types of thoughts start to crowd out the momentary bliss that I’m trying to savor.  I don’t want to acknowledge or accept the burden of broken hearts right now.   Not in these last few moments, before I have to jump back into action, and dive back into my normal life.

Behold, yet another selfie. Sueeeus Maximus. Mother. Sister. Friend. Working fool.

In these last few moments, I’m just going to be still, breathe, and rejoice in the beautiful life that I am privileged to live.  Sueeeus Maximus.  Mother, sister, friend, working fool.

Posted in love, me, men, mental health.

the hounds of winter

We’re on the cusp of autumn, which is the forebear of winter, and my fashion attention is drawn to my love of leggings and tunics.  And what better way to cheer up a dreary weary soul, than to adorn the physical shell with something joyful.  When the going gets tough, the tough wear houndstooth.

black and white

It’s not that the going is all that tough…  I’m resilient, and this blog is testimony to the ebbs and flows of my life.

I may have sorrow for a season, but truly, I wouldn’t change a thing.  Life experiences are what shape us, give us texture, and teach us perspective.  Without sorrow, how could joy taste as sweet?

geometry

It’s a journey.  I never mean harm.  Truly.  In my heart of hearts, the language I speak is love.  I am often misunderstood, or mistaken.  I have behavioral patterns of which I am well aware, and though I may attempt to be vigilant and not continue repeating such patterns, inevitably I do.  What is it they say, “old habits die hard”?  There’s a reason why that quote is, well, a quote.

prolly a fashion faux pas, but who cares?

Some people say harsh things from their place of hurt.  Some people are stronger about their places of hurt, and say noble and beautiful things.  Everyone is different in the way they walk their walk.  Sometimes it takes years and years for the dust to settle and to be able to look at a situation and see it for what it was, whether it was innocent and beautiful, or wicked and vile.  Well, it’s fairly easy to see whether a situation was wicked and vile.  Ugliness has a way of bubbling to the top.  Thankfully, I’ve not been exposed to the wicked and vile for many, many years, and as well, I never let it break me or even slow me down for very long.  Granted, I don’t understand it, but that makes it all the much easier to dismiss.  Bad data.  Ignore.  Most people want to be good.  And when the dust does settle, usually a warm friendship remains.  For that, I am grateful.  Also, for that, I am hopeful.  Because I know that harsh things said from places of hurt aren’t really true.

Maybe they are true for the moment, for the person experiencing the pain.  If I say, “DAMMIT!!!” when I smack my hand with a hammer, that word doesn’t define anything more than the momentary emotional outburst from the physical jolt of pain.  It has absolutely no representation of who I am (other than that I am a teensy bit crude when I could have chosen a more tame expression, such as “fiddlesticks” or “ding-dang-darn” –AS IF!!  HA!!).  Therefore, I can rationalize that, although harsh and hurtful things have been said, they don’t mean much.  Of course, it takes me a little while to process through the immediate reaction, and that processing time isn’t particularly pleasant.  Thank God for the healing powers of tears and sleep.

dizzying waves and symmetry

I’ve written about shoes and fits before, and the trials and challenges of navigating through relationships.  Nothing has really changed (regarding those thoughts I collected several years ago).   I wish that I knew how to walk the walk without stomping on anybody(‘s feelings).  It’s very hard for me to explain to a man why I don’t fit with him.  One will ask me why I hate him, when he’s a good man.  I don’t hate him. I don’t hate anyone.  I love him.  I love everyone.  One will ask me what he did wrong, or where he went wrong.  Why does there have to be a fault assigned?  Other than it helps explain precisely why the shoe doesn’t fit.  I don’t have precise answers.  I just know.  Maybe I represent the hounds of winter for some (or many) men.  It’s not my intention to leave a wake of crumpled souls in my path.  I would tread more softly if I knew better how to tread.  I probably should just stay away from men.

if the shoe fits

Meanwhile, the introspective journey continues, in which I seek to understand what it is that I want or need in my life.  I’m a whole person, already complete.  I’m not interested in changing myself for another person, and I’m certainly not interested in another person changing himself for me, but I am wholeheartedly interested in changing myself to become the best me that I can be.

Imunna keep on smilin anyway

So what else can I do? I’ll just look down at my houndstooth pants and keep on smiling.  Life is as beautiful as I allow it to be.  So life is beautiful.

I am resilient.  I mean no harm.  I’m sorry for any hurt that has been experienced as a direct impact from relating with me.  I love everyone.

Life IS beautiful.  And I am very blessed.  I AM going to keep on smiling.

Posted in love, me, men.

the house at pooh corner

Sometimes, it seems as though sorrows come in waves.  Recently, there has been news of friends, and friends of friends, people around my age, losing their lives to cancer or sickness, and in one case, suicide.  Lives lost.  Yet, at the same time, there has also been news of friends, and friends of friends, surviving cancer and surviving the brink of suicide.  Lives won!

One thing that news like this does is help me put my own life into perspective.  How am I living?  Am I wasting precious moments of my life, or am I living my life fully?

For a very long time, now, I’ve lost my smile.  I wasn’t actually aware of that, per se, until a year and a half or so ago, but once it occurred to me, I scrolled through picture upon picture and saw that it was true.  There are many pictures in which I’m smiling, but the smile is hollow.

Without knowing what else to do, I sought to at least put a little more effort into taking better care of myself.  I’ve taken some small steps and some big steps, and I’ve made some progress.  I’ve been trying to answer the question of how I want to live.  What do I want for myself and for my family?

It’s interesting how things can change so dramatically in an instant.  I’ve been in a sort of doldrums state for such a very long time, where I couldn’t even begin to imagine what sort of life I want for myself, other than simply know that the life I’m living is not the life that I want, or more to the point, the life I’m living is not quite complete.  If I tried to give the matter thought, I couldn’t imagine any kind of scenario that would work, that would even be possible.  My age, my children’s age, my work, my responsibilities.  My life is so full that there is barely any room to breathe, yet still, there persists an aching, yearning need for connection.

Somehow, in the midst of everyday life, the heavens have opened up and rained down on me.  In the course of doing those things which are within my reach, I’ve made new connections, new friendships.  I’m starting to meet other parents, and slowly building a sense of community.  By the simple act of letting myself settle in to this country home and this small community, the community has opened up to me.

I love where I live.  It’s beautiful and peaceful.  For the first time in my life, I feel as though I have a home.   In fact, I feel as though I am home.  It’s something I’ve been missing for so long!

And look!  A genuine smile!

She’s back –  and she’s back in black!

Posted in depression, love, me, men, mental health, sorrow.