if I fall

cropped-leaf.jpg

This week finding the right words has been difficult for me. My Dad passed away and I am feeling all “these things”; frustrated that I cannot put words on all of it.

I’m not dreaming anymore. Not even the nightmares. Not for days. It’s unsettling. Grief, itself, has a unique strangeness. It grabs you and throws you hard against the floor, you are wounded. You are angry…and sad.

You have to eat, and that causes a new kind of grief…you realize you have to continue to do people things like go to work, talk to a neighbor…or answer emails about what seemed like important things before now…but have been rendered pointless by the **after**. You have to wake up and remember all over again because in a slight moment of morning haziness you somehow forgot…you are mad at the sun, and traffic (which isn’t new, really, but you just **can’t** right now with this FUCKING TRAFFIC.) You are angry, again.

You are quiet and brittle. You want to disappear.

You avoid Facebook. You wonder if eyelids can get chapped and can’t remember driving home. Your head hurts, you worry it might never stop. You mull over your life, you chastise yourself for ONLY thinking about yourself. You stay anchored inside your selfish little grief bubble. You laugh at something stupid and guilt washes over you like a sick mess. You are ashamed and so sorry.

You maniac.

You talk to yourself about yourself, because it’s less painful than missing your Dad and feeling fucking useless to anyone. You feel **safer** in the bubble.

You loved your Dad.

It’s a wonder we can survive at all…through life’s particular cruelty…gifting us something which at times seems too lovely to enjoy or too painful to endure.

Though we do endure it, nurture it, fear or embrace it, reclaim it…not right now…but eventually.

 

 

 

image  © Aimee McEwen, if shared please link back to this post

 

you make me smile

Be love, be lovely.

Today, as I was leaving a grocery store parking lot, I stopped short of the sidewalk to let a man approaching on bicycle pass. It’s an extremely hot day. Sometimes, living here in Florida is like living on the surface of the sun. The man’s face was scrunched into a grimace as he cautiously wheeled toward my car. I leaned to the right and back so that he could see me, seeing him.

As he passed in front of me I waved and smiled so that, again, he could see me seeing him – seeing me. His expression lifted – his eyes lit up, he smiled back. He picked up speed and was almost at once out of sight. It was a small yet very human moment.

When we see we are seen, we are softened.

I see you, you lovely humans. ♡

including you

story by jenny hollowell // photos by natalie lampert

Heard this for the first time today. Thought it was beautiful, so I’m sharing.

The last few months have me thinking about all the things. Life things; turning 40, wellness, illness, forgiveness, regret, letting go, starting again, going away, returning, love and loveliness, losing, time, speaking up, saying no, cruelty, bitterness, remembering, forgetting, living…

 

 

 

 

 

I’m gonna be

When my chronic inflammation gets the best of me, and even with my careful diet and avoiding stress it does still get me, I have a plan in place for dealing with it. Sounds funny to say that pain is something you get used to, but you do. Generally, a flare up can last 2 weeks. I don’t take any narcotic pain killers (allergic to most) which means I’m just taking things slow. Like, really slow. Pain is exhausting and sleep is difficult when you can’t breathe. You begin to feel a little bit loony. You learn to not show pain in public (or maybe you avoid going out). Aside from the flare ups I have to deal with stiffness, back aches and associated wobblyness daily.

Right now, I am doing well with managing my pain. Even so, yesterday I looked up some new symptoms on Dr. Google and it’s totally nothing… or it’s something terrible. One of those. Every page I visited listed “discomfort” as a symptom. Obviously, now I am worried I have ALL THE THINGS. I live with discomfort every day, we’re practically roomies. Discomfort is the Laverne to my Shirley, only a lot less fun (the opposite of fun). Worst roommate ever, actually, and I’ve had some pretty crappy roommates (ex-husbands count, right?).

If I’m doing well, like I am right now, I take advantage of it. I CLEAN the whole house, take Mac on a MILLION walks, go shopping, call friends, post on the blog, SMILE, make plans (this one is new). You have to take advantage of feeling well, when you don’t know how long you have until “big D” shows up again to suck all the fun out of your life. Until then, I’m going to love on everybody and be fucking awesome.

rain

It’s a music day! YAY!!!!!

I am busy with not so fun work-type things and music helps be focus. Maybe “refocus” is the better term for it. There are at least 5 other things I would rather be doing (okay four, because this blog post counts as one). Right now we (still just me) are listening to pretty piano music by composer Brian Crain. (Gawd, the spelling of his name almost gave me a stroke just now.)

Twice last week it was suggested I write a book by two people who probably didn’t even know that I’ve had that on my bucket list for a while. I just laughed a little and took the suggestions as compliments. I’m not really a writer. I have a difficult time organizing my thoughts into “stories” and get tangled up in tangents. So tangled that I forget my point or find a new point (or new tangent). That’s not writing, that’s more just thinking, I think. or it’s just remembering or noticing or collecting, I’m not sure.

Bucket lists are a sad dusty collection of things people want to do before they DIE. I’ve never liked the idea of that. Sometimes I feel like I could write all day if only I had the perfect music playing in my brain. I’m sure I play the music in my ear buds too loudly and that it is bad for my hearing.

Maybe writing a book is just something I want to do before I go DEAF?

Either way, I’ve decided to start writing! I would love to tell you that it will happen every day… that I will write pages and pages and pages that will collect like rain in a barrel. And, those pages will become something that resembles a book. But I cannot tell you that because tomorrow will not be the same as today and then is not now. But now will be then… and when it is I will have written pages and pages…

See?

p.s. Please do not worry, I know I have a terrible habit of inappropriately placed commas… that’s what editors are for (I hope).

image credit:
via unsplash

silence and days

Yesterday I was feeling like the Summer is over. We’re not nearly to the middle of it yet… but I was looking forward to Fall. I don’t know what my problem is with staying present in what is “now”.

I’m glad for the weekend, glad for time to quiet myself. I’ll continue organizing my spaces, compartmentalizing my goals, standing my ground when necessary, and practicing kindness toward the me that has trouble sitting still and just enjoying things… as they come.

credits:
LUCIA

because this

Well, THAT was beautiful. Listening to Melody Gardot all day today. Because this.

I have days where all I want to do is listen to music. Other days I cannot bring myself to even turn on the car radio. Strange to have those two extremes. If I think carefully about it, the days of music are because I feel happy. The no music days are days I don’t want to feel anything.

MelodyGardotbyShervinLainez

happy today.

credits:
image via

under the same sun

APRIL is here and over the weekend I was very happy to be officially “out of the woods”, so to speak, with all of my dog’s various health issues and vet appointments. It’s a weird thing to admit, but the last few days I’ve been feeling low, angry, even sad at times. I know that after serious illness/surgery some people experience a depressed state while re-adjusting to normal routines but does that also apply to a pet’s illness? I’ve decided, yes it does (in an effort to convince myself that my feelings will subside).

Now that Mac is “better” I return my attention to other “problems” (or other solutions, if your a half full kinda bird –good for you!). Life is a series of hurdles and victories and more hurdles and lightning sand pits and rodents of unusual size… wait… no…. THAT’s The Princess Bride.

I do not expect my life to be happy all of the time. It’s not realistic to think that way and leads to disappointment, inevitably. I’ll be 38 this year and when I am struggling with ups and downs it’s that number that causes the most wobbly feelings. What I want to be, where I want to be, with whom I want to be, how I see myself. By design, my life is uncomplicated; few attachments, living (mostly) within my means, sticking with a routine.  Staying the course, I guess. This 38th year, though… I can feel the room getting smaller.

Do I become smaller, or do I get a bigger room?

 

Sometimes I wonder how other people deal with these things. Outgrowing your own life, like a pair of too-tight-shoes, is painful. I’m such a singular person (person not personality – unfortunately for most). It’s lonely and I tend to feel like not many people “get” me. Younger me was not too concerned with that sort of thing. At the very least I found myself entertaining. Being alone in the crowd is becoming tiresome. I’m rambling now, but it’s good to get this stuff out of your head. I’m feeling wobbly again so I’ll just wrap this up with one of my favorites:

Halfway down the stairs
Is a stair
Where I sit.
There isn’t any
Other stair
Quite like
It.
I’m not at the bottom,
I’m not at the top;
So this is the stair
Where
I always
Stop.

Halfway up the stairs
Isn’t up,
Isn’t down.
It isn’t in the nursery,
It isn’t in the town.
And all sorts of funny thoughts
Run round my head:
“It isn’t really
Anywhere!
It’s somewhere else
Instead!”
~A.A. Milne

 

credits:
image © Ken Bishop