Passion

In some attempt to remove the oily gunk disguising my soul –

I reach for my Animal Spirit cards –

Hopeful I may find some guidance in just what to do –

Never one for learning the finer art of complex layouts and meanings –

I simply remove them from the generously autographed box –

And shuffle until one jumps out and tells me –

What’s What –

Because it is a sign from the Spirits and not

a symptom of clumsy hands –

Black Panther greets me – with one word – “Passion”

And tells me if only I will listen to my heart’s desire –

And follow the path of that which I was born to do –

All will be well.

Hmmm – –

Shall I go to school in hopes of someday becoming a Librarian Extraordinaire –

Because I love information and books –

But just how does me being a hermit fit in with public service?

Shall I focus on becoming a website guru –

moving from the niche

‘Priced for those who can’t do it themselves and can’t afford a real website designer?”

to

“Making more money than I know what to do with”

though I’m not a graphic artist, one whit?

And know just enough to get myself into trouble –

And give locals on tight budgets a well indexed, but artistically bland presence on the web?

Perhaps I shall pour my heart and soul into my garden of eden –

Become Lady Bountiful to those who are hungry in my neighborhood –

And charge reasonable fees for fresh food to those who can afford it –

Conversely, I could just sit and finish the 7 works-in-progress manuscripts-

Dutifully upload, create and update social media accounts

To announce to the world I’ve finally decided I shall be a writer –

This spin on the reincarnation wheel –

All these options I contemplate –

While a still, small voice whispers

“Do you really love any of these enough to make them your whole life?”

Regretfully, I acknowledge my Passion –

Skipping from one thing to the next –

Bouncing from one idea to another –

Trying a little bit of this and that, for you know,

Life is too short, already, without further restricting yourself –

And that is that –

I may follow my Passions to my hearts desire –

I doubt my bank account will ever benefit from following

my heart –

🙂

 

Ode to Gunk, Rubbing Alcohol and Real Poets

This morning, I’m playing Solitaire –

Because laundry is swirling in the washer –

Or drying on the line –

And I still don’t feel like tackling the gunk in my kitchen sink –

I’m trying to beat my best time –

Hard to do, when the mouse feet are fettered –

By months of dust, grime and other unknown films –

I open the new bottle of Rubbing Alcohol,

Grinning as I remember why I bought it –

Seems the child unit thought the previous clear bottle held peroxide –

And dutifully poured the entire bottle over the scrapes on his legs –

Wounds incurred from weeds, tree branches and pellets –

As he and his band of brothers waged an imaginary war –

On the wild plains of the prairie –

Where no one actually dies – and remain friends as soon as “Uncle” is called –

Wars should always be fought with air-soft guns…

And adequate eye protection – –

How he howled and vowed never to use peroxide again –

🙂

Soak the cotton with liquid fire –

Swipe over tiny mouse feet –

Turn pure white to grimy black –

as I clean the witness to my neglected garden plans-

And partner in frenzied work to pay for said garden plans –

aka, my desk –

And then resume my game – only to find

The Queen of Hearts blocking my win –

New game – and how fast I stack the deck –

As the mouse skitters across my clean desk –

On pristine feet –

Perhaps I need to wipe the gunk from my soul –

And skitter across my garden –

Or kitchen –

To do that which needs done –

Or perhaps

I should rescue my laundry from the approaching rain clouds –

And be satisfied, at least,

the mouse,

closet

and hamper

are once more clean.

As I beat the Queen of Hearts in 1.05 minutes…

**********

I’m not a poet and don’t I know it!   If you want to read real poetry, from a master – Check Out Ed’s End of the Planet Books – to see what a real poet can do!   🙂

Top 10 Things I learned from my Son

1. There is nothing, absolutely nothing, that can’t be handled by shouting random words before, during or after another’s monologue – Bubblegum and Bacon are the most effective.

2. Being Altruistic doesn’t make you  a Saint – Only be Altruistic if you actually Want To Be.

3.  Worrying about who is going to die from too much video games and Dr. Pepper is a waste of time.

4. Being the “Better Person” is a laudable goal, but sometimes, it’s just not worth it – –

5. Society and culture will find a thousand ways to pigeon-hole you – Rail against the Dark!

6.  Sometimes, the only response people will notice is if you run while holding scissors.

7. Running with scissors doesn’t always spell Death and Ruin – –

8. When all else fails in the compassion/understanding game, simply ridicule your friends until they understand, through sarcasm, why you think they’re so wonderful and they get that you’ll support them fully in whatever story they’ve chosen to tell about themselves – They will, (most likely and in direct opposition to what your mother thinks will happen)  choose a different story once you back them up and agree with them fully on their original one, simply because their original one doesn’t sound so hot….now….

9. It’s never to early or late in the day to take a bubble bath followed by a nap.

10. Being yourself isn’t always easy – and you may have some fights along the way – but it’s still the only way to fly.

Cybercafe Open!

I’m nearly through the day – this day that I’m sure the Cyber Cafe is open and those who are no longer with us, can hear – –

“Good Morning, Morgan – hope I’m not pulling you away from something important – because in my infinite vanity, I believe whenever I call on you and Dad, you arrive to listen to me ramble on – – It’s been 6 years – you would be so proud of your brother – he’s a natural in Drama, just like you- I’m sure you saw his rendition of Bob Cratchett this December – his wonderful portrayal of Christan in Cyrano this spring – Did you not just love how he stayed in character at all times – no matter who else forgot their lines or what was going on around him?

There are times he struggles – he’s more like his Dad than me and I don’t always know what to do for him – – we don’t disagree like you and I did – but we aren’t always on the same exact page like you and I were, either – – – I sometimes worry that I’m making the same mistakes I made with you – much as I vowed not to ever repeat those mistakes again!

I started a new job this last fall – and a co-worker reminds me of you – tall and slim, with hair dyed a different color each month or so, 18 years old, enthusiastic and smart, he reminds me of you.

He’s become a buddy of your brother – a surrogate older brother, if you will – not that you could ever be replaced – but it brings him comfort – I rail against the fact your brother is stretching his wings to leave the nest (not quite yet!) and knowing how wonderful this relationship is for him – – 

I told  the co-worker/surrogate son/brother, how much he and his family made a difference for your brother and I these past few weeks – earlier this spring – didI make him uncomfortable?   I don’t know – but I wanted to make sure he knew how he touched your brother and I’s lives – –

I’m not at my best today – I’m trying to figure out what stories are true and which should be let go as false hoods –

Did I ever tell you that Dad visited me in my dreams a year after he died and most frequently, the week before you died?   How he never said anything, just looked so sad and how I would awake so sure he was there, only to sob, heartbroken when I realized it was a dream and he was not?   Now it seems he was trying to let me know – know what was to come – only I thought it just meant I was working through my grief –

Did you know that the weeks before you died, there was a black crow near my car every morning I left for work and one to greet me at both work and my return to home?  I was excited, as crows indicate change – I thought they were showing support for quitting my job and starting a new venture – how wrong I was – they tried to tell me, too, but I didn’t get the message… 

Do you think I’ll ever come up with stories that both serve me and actually have some chance of being true in the whole scheme of things?!?

Dad’s been visiting my dreams often here lately – he laughs, he talks, he hugs, he loves – what does that mean?   Should I be happy or is this an omen?   Does it mean turning a corner of healing or notice of things to come?   Will I soon be with you?  Need I wait for awhile longer?

What will I understand this phenomena to mean when the calendar has changed  6 more times?  Anything?  Nothing?

Am I driving you nutz with my analyzing yet?

I miss you –  trying to figure out a story I can tell to make it through Saturday –  your 24th birthday – when, for the first time since you died, I have scheduled something other than “get through the day” for the 7th of June –

Yup!  I signed up to be somewhere, on someone else’s schedule, in a public setting where I have to be nice to humanity and a meltdown is not an option – do you think it will work, this new approach?  

6 years is a long time, but this morning, it seems like no time at all – – I feel nearly as I did 6 years ago, except the blessed numbness is not present – – Does that mean I’m well enough to tackle the next layer of pain? 

How many more layers are there left to go?  

Sometimes, I get tired of working through the layers – I try to just let them be – to not attach any significance to them – but that’s not really me, now, is it?

Am I going forward, backward or stuck?  

Yeah, you’re right – I should just shout “Bubblegum” or some other random word until I feel better –

Thanks, you always knew how to put it all in perspective.

I love you and will let you get back to your own adventures – – tell Everyone I said Hi! and oh, how I miss you all.”

Cycles and Stories

This story brought to you courtesy the idiot hunter-gatherer’s who wanted to know when herds would be migrating or the Shamans who either lusted for power and wanted to appear to predict when certain events would occur or truly just wanted to better understand the universe and use said knowledge to help their fellow man

Whatever the case, someone, somewhere, invented the calendar and it’s all been downhill since…

Sometimes,  the natural cycles of the Universal rotation and our forefathers’  ingenious ways of keeping us organized and controlled (clocks and calendars…and expectations of punctuality) converge to ensure I not only have a crappy day – but that I also spend all day arguing with myself about why or why not to obsess over the obvious patterns and  what those patterns may or may not mean…

About 2 weeks ago, I was going along, minding my own business, looking forward to the conference I had received a scholarship to – said conference was on Friday, May 23rd –

A week prior to the conference, something kept nagging at me – a little niggle I was forgetting something – –

I checked my Desk Calendar, my purse organizer and email calendars –

(yes, I took the Franklin Covey course and learned the 1st rule of keeping only one calendar – it didn’t stick)

As the week progressed, the quiet whisper became louder by increments, until it was nearly shouting at me that I was, in fact, forgetting something – and it just had to be huge – I rechecked my accounting software and bill pay – logged in to make sure all the websites I host are duly backed-up and no domains are due for renewal…

Everything is as it should be….

But the voice was not satisfied – next, I frantically cleaned my desk and read every sticky note there, checked the ones stuck to the wall behind my monitor and even went so far as to check my trash can, for the elusive neon orange note that would tell me what else I had scheduled for Friday, May 23rd that I had somehow forgotten – –

No luck.

Being the crazed woman I am, I called all the friends and neighbors I do chores for when they’re off having fun and I’m stuck home because of work and/or am too broke to go on vacation – – Brought them along my path of insanity while I grilled them,

“You’re sure you didn’t need me on Friday?   Maybe you thought you’d be gone Friday, but then changed your schedule and forgot to tell me?”

No, No, they assure me – you’re fine – you haven’t forgotten anything…

In desperation, I begged the Universe for help in remembering what I had forgotten that I’m supposed to do on May 23rd  –

**********

My inner-historian –

who looks rather like the stereotypical librarian of 1940’s fame, complete with tweed skirt, constrictive jacket, wire-rimmed glasses over pointy nose and thin, gray hair tied so tightly up in a bun, the bags under her eyes become wrinkles at the side of her eyebrows – – (No, she is not sexy librarian of pop-culture fame) –

came to my rescue.

“Shh!  Quit fussing and making noise.   You didn’t forget anything – Morgan graduates on the 23rd.  You have to be done at the job you gave notice at in February by Friday morning, at the latest – you just need to be firm and let them know you’ve stretched your month’s notice way, way too far.”

Gulp – she’s right – I hurriedly bring up my computer calendar and scroll back to May 23rd 2008 – sure enough, it was a Friday…

And suddenly, healing and time go by the wayside and here I sit- reliving May, six years ago –

Friday – 23rd – he graduates and is home by midnight though I stretched his curfew to 2am,  because he’s tired and stuffy from allergies – I tell him how proud I am of him graduating when I know he really just wanted to be done, two years ago! with the institution he believed, “brainwashes you into loving cubicle 9-5 world” –

Friday the 30th, when we went to the doctor because seasonal allergies seemed to have morphed into a cold, virus or sinus infection…

And Saturday the 31st, when his fever broke and he was feeling better…

Sunday, the 1st, when he was once again so miserable and fighting me about going to the ER…

Monday, the 2nd, when he came home from the doctors, pain free after getting a shot and ready to rest, as the doctor said he should – laid down and quit breathing 2 short hours later – – The sirens, the wild ambulance ride – the quarantined ICU room – with friends and family decked out in blue near-hazmat suits, because no one knows what, exactly, is going on –

Which brings us to Tuesday, June 3rd – when the specialists still know nothing about the why, only that he will never be off life support or breathe on his own again…

The calendar, one of man’s greatest inventions, has become my enemy this year –

**********

Why do I tell you this?   To remind myself and you that as we heal there are still lurking neurons and cellular memories that remind us we’re forgetting – – or burying — or there’s something left to be brought to the light and healed – –

It really is dealer’s choice – – it’s your inner world and you can durn well tell whatever story you wish about it!

To point out we can feel appalled to find we are starting to forget – to acknowledge the quiet whisper that says forgetting diminishes our loved one – a review of the the fine line between remembering without pain, forgetting through repression and revisiting memories because we finally can do so without disintegrating –

– the moments that come along in bits and pieces when we are surprised by the little imp of memory/grief that  jumps from hiding in the bushes and bites us soundly in the arse –

I tell you because I’ve spent days thinking about how a silly alignment of the calendar days/dates – that will undoubtedly occur again and again in the future – set me down the path of making up stories that are on par with those concocted by the Pyramidiots – stories that try to make sense of just why my inner world was so insistent I pay attention to the exact eeriness of this year’s calendar – stories made up to explain, understand, give higher meaning to events or just comfort myself -all swirling around my inner sanctum:

“Hmm – interesting – – My sons were born 8 years and 3 days apart – Nathan will graduate 8 years after Morgan died – that must, simply must, mean something – why is there never a numerologist around when you need one?”

“My back hurts – is it because I’m trying to hold on to memories I should let go, or is the heat lamp therapy tearing down brick-by-brick the huge walls I’ve built in my system?   Am I unwinding the ball of ill health or simply adding more imbalance to that which already exists?”

“Think I’ll map out how many more times I’ll endure Friday May 23rd  – 3 times?  6?   If I eat healthy, exercise, meditate and journal, will it make those years easier to handle or just ensure I must travel through more of these cycles?   Wouldn’t it make more sense to sit on my couch watching reality TV while eating Cheetos, guzzling beer and chain-smoking?  Why keep the torture alive for decades on end?”

“Which is better?  A. Map out every year May 23rd falls on a Friday – so I can be prepared and take reasonable preventative action or B. Try to forget that May 23rd means anything – surely after all the tapping, journaling, meditation I’ve done, I should be able to think of this without going loopy – what’s wrong with me?”

“Nothing – you just haven’t completely healed yet – quit fighting it and hang on – soon, it will be July and it will all be better – you know you always have an awesome July!”

“If Morgan were here, he’d tell you Drama class is over – – “

**********

Did I ever tell you the first 3 years after he died I had to look at the calendar to remember if he died on the 3rd or the 4th?   Because he was ill, because I couldn’t or wouldn’t sleep, at home or in the hospital – because I took a nap during the day to avoid all the friends and family I didn’t have answers for and stayed awake at night when there was no one who needed me to make a decision or give them comfort – I lost track of the days – – I tasked others with reminding when I had to be somewhere –

Maybe this year’s angst is all payback for shunning the gift of forgetting that Mother Nature gave me at the time – did I bless her and thank her?

Nope, I dutifully double-checked the calendar in subsequent years to see what date Tuesday fell on that spring – until finally, June 3rd was burned on my brain and I was no longer being gently (or irritatingly) corrected by family members because I mis-remembered what date it was…those who couldn’t stand the pain of me asking, “Was it the 3rd or 4th?  What date was that Tuesday?”

**********

There are stories and games we play with ourselves as we navigate the world – some are inherited – some we make up –

Some serve us – Some confound us – Some merely keep us entertained until such time as we create a new one –

Life may be hard at times and fragile at others, but always, we have the gift of stories to navigate whatever comes our way.