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Archive for the ‘life’ Category

anniversary of longing

Thursday, May 12th, 2011

It’s been a year, Dad. Longer than that now, a few more sunrises you will never see. More days passing that I don’t have a father. More days passing that you don’t have me.

Where are you?

I’ve been trying not to think about that too much. Where your soul resides. I don’t know the answer to the question and the lack of conviction I have in my theory causes me a physical tightness. Loss of breath. Squeeze my heart, uncertainty. You make me miss my daddy. I’ve opened a business of my own, you will never see and I have a slight breadth of guilt that I could have helped you.

But I know better.

So, I write. Mainly for me, these days. No comments, no traffic, no stats. a journal, a pen, sometimes from closed eyes. Sometimes, for what feels like a virgin voyage, my eyes are wide open. I miss the you I always wanted, but I can’t quite seem to say I miss the you that you gave me. That’s a little packet of honesty that hurts as much to say as it would to hear. I wanted it all to be different.

So, Ive run mental marathons this past year. In an effort to prove to myself that I am not you. I’ve sat in willful silence, meditating on the crevasse between want and need- and where your love fits in. I am an empty womb of regret and promise. Potential. You were, too.

You were, too.

I won’t spend another year ambling in the footprints you’ve left, veering off trail. This space between, it doesn’t suit me. I long for the you I never had, the you you never had. I will not fade quietly away and leave the same wake.

Year one. Everything and nothing is the same.

fatty fatty 2×4

Tuesday, March 22nd, 2011

There seems to be some kind of club, wherein you’ve ever had a weight problem and lost weight, you are then allowed to be a total jackass to fat people. The same club also allows people who have never been fat, but also like to be jackasses to people who are.

Let’s talk about that for a sec, that word, fat. Fat. It’s like the most heart-wrenching thing someone can call you, when your whole life has been a struggle with weight. Call me an asshole? No big deal, water off of a duck’s back. I like my heart, I like my soul, I am a damned good friend. I will love you far after you’ve stopped loving yourself. I will carry you, on my back until  you can walk. So, I know I’m not an asshole.

But, fat? Yeah, that one hits close to home.

So, yeah. I’m fat. This has caused me more heartache and more protection and more drama over the years than any of the other history I’ve shared here. It has given me a wall, which as made me all but invisible, and at times a size that has made me anything but invisible. Some truly hideous names and accusations have been leveled at me, because of my pant size. I’m gross, I’m lazy, I’m stupid, I’m worthless.

I’ve been passed over, looked over, talked over. Ignored, berated, made fun of. What’s that thing we are all talking about, lately? Bullying? Yeah, ain’t just for kids, anymore. It has made me cry, left me breathless more times than I can count. But you know? The more I hear, the deeper this little seed grows into something blooming, something grand.

I am pissed.

I own my fat. No one made me fat, but me. I have my reasons, nothing to do with really liking cake or never unassing the couch. Although I do like cake and my couch is comfortable. I padded on my pounds to protect me from a world that was too harsh for me, at too young an age.  It was done on purpose, by design. It was all me.

But guess what?

I am fat, but I am not gross. I am fat, but I am beautiful.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I am fat, but I am not stupid. I am fat, but I can write the shit out of anything you put in front of me. I can make you feel at home and I can power through 8 massages a day.

I am fat, but I am fun.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I do not slog around, miserable and bumbling. I do not ride the motorized carts and ask for wheelchairs. I take the stairs. I drink my tea with nothing in it. I don’t keep a spare turkey leg in my purse. I could though, my purse is big enough, but oddly no one calls my purse fat.

I am fat, but I am sexy

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I can move. I do move. Bite me if you don’t think I can charm the pants clean off of you. Because, I’m fat, but I can.

I am fat, but I am loved.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I am fat, but I don’t deserve your derision. I am fat, but I don’t deserve your hushed whispers, your rude stares or your judgment. I am fat but I deserve respect. Not because I am fat, but because I am human.

So, next time you feel compelled to comment on the status of my ass, be prepared for me to be my beautiful, funny, talented, sexy nurturing self. Because, I’m fat but I’m not an asshole. That’s you.

Tuesday, February 8th, 2011

He moves me in his quiet way, all mind and math provable theory. His collection of letters an impressive train that flows behind him. He moves me as I don’t understand him, while knowing him so well.

His hands that reach for me in small, gray hours. He moves me. His hands whose fingers lace through mine and make me safe and make me heal and make me ache. His small noises in sleep and reluctance to leave the warmth of dreams, my side. He moves me.

I am things without him which do not serve me, crevasses empty without his abundance to fill His laugh is the one I most aspire to cause. I breathe him in, he moves me.

On being brave

Sunday, December 19th, 2010

She is frail and small and even in her little wheelchair she is so very tiny. She scoots into my cozy office. with its soft music and beautiful smells and comfortable temperature. She smiles at me and I at her.

She wraps her arms around my neck and I wrap mine around her waist. She clings to me, like a child to a mother, her face against my hair. Her heart against my heart. I help her up onto my soft table and underneath the red, felt blanket. She sighs against the pillows I’ve piled up to keep her slightly sitting. Her 80 years evident in her face, her hands, her slow and uneven breath. She reminds me of my father then, all labored breathing and paper skin. her dyed dark hair showing scalp.

I take her hand in mine and smooth lotion through her fingers, around her arthritic knuckles. She closes her eyes and starts to hum to the Bach cello suites that surround us. She runs out of breath quickly and so I hum for her. She smiles.

She smiles and I smile too, her fingers relax and her face begins to calm. Years drop like shadows in the face of the noontime sun. I continue to hum.

This is what I do, For small chunks of time, my hands are my magic. But, I realize in this dark room, in this safe space that I create, that I am a coward.

I am not complacent in the therapy for which I’ve developed such a talent. Every day a litany of words trips through my head in the dark. They beg

write me

pay attention

be present

I am here

I brush them away with each stroke of my hand and arm. Giving myself away in 55 minute increments. That, is not bravery. That is just survival. That is just paying the bills.

I think I deserve more.

Hate

Tuesday, October 12th, 2010

I have hands like my mother’s. Except for the tenderness that hers convey, I lace my fingers together and let themselves worry into knots. Tension. Elegance belied by white knuckles.

My hands, thin fingers, pale skin, show my biggest flaw, fear. I hate the fear in myself. How it curls itself around my heart and holds in what little beauty lies there. How fear compounds in the weight I carry. My body, my hands, my shell screaming ever quietly “stay away from me”.

But I need you closer.

It is so easy for me to collapse inward, a supernova of low esteem and let the scared truth of me take me over. I can grow cold and small as a garden snail, leaving a slimy trail of fear behind me, waiting for the day where life is too hot for me to survive it. For 18 years I have had to swallow the distasteful flavor of fear. I fight it with the same hands that show it so well and I hate what it makes me.

This fear

***


Following are the writing prompts for 30 Days of Truth, should you be interested in doing so yourself.

Day 01 → Something you hate about yourself.
Day 02 → Something you love about yourself.
Day 03 → Something you have to forgive yourself for.
Day 04 → Something you have to forgive someone for.
Day 05 → Something you hope to do in your life.
Day 06 → Something you hope you never have to do.
Day 07 → Someone who has made your life worth living for.
Day 08 → Someone who made your life hell, or treated you like shit.
Day 09 → Someone you didn’t want to let go, but just drifted.
Day 10 → Someone you need to let go, or wish you didn’t know.
Day 11 → Something people seem to compliment you the most on.
Day 12 → Something you never get compliments on.
Day 13 → A band or artist that has gotten you through some tough ass days. (write a letter.)
Day 14 → A hero that has let you down. (letter)
Day 15 → Something or someone you couldn’t live without, because you’ve tried living without it.
Day 16 → Someone or something you definitely could live without.
Day 17 → A book you’ve read that changed your views on something.
Day 18 → Your views on gay marriage.
Day 19 → What do you think of religion? Or what do you think of politics?
Day 20 → Your views on drugs and alcohol.
Day 21 → (scenario) Your best friend is in a car accident and you two got into a fight an hour before. What do you do?
Day 22 → Something you wish you hadn’t done in your life.
Day 23 → Something you wish you had done in your life.
Day 24 → Make a playlist to someone, and explain why you chose all the songs. (Just post the titles and artists and letter)
Day 25 → The reason you believe you’re still alive today.
Day 26 → Have you ever thought about giving up on life? If so, when and why?
Day 27 → What’s the best thing going for you right now?
Day 28 → What if you were pregnant or got someone pregnant, what would you do?
Day 29 → Something you hope to change about yourself. And why.
Day 30 → A letter to yourself, tell yourself EVERYTHING you love about yourself

Dreaming of Teacups

Sunday, September 26th, 2010

I love teacups.

My father bought one for me at a garage sale once. It was chipped and wobbly and sat, listing to the left on an equally chipped and wobbly saucer. It had a slightly pearlescent painted surface with tiny tea roses. Yellow, then pink, then lavender, all twisted in communion with each other on light green stems, with exaggerated leaves.

It was a dainty little vessel, the tiny handle on the side a broken disaster of a thing. Barely large enough for even my young girl finger to slip through. With my current tea drinking habits, it would have taken me 47 refills to reach my quota. Impractical. I adored it.

I’ve been dreaming of that teacup. It broke when I moved into my first apartment. I set my ancient kettle on my ancient stove and laid my treasured teacup next to it. The very action of the kettle coming to a boil shook it free of the stove and shattered it all over my kitchen tile. I cried as I swept up the fragments. So perfect a metaphor to the relationship with my father. Broken.

In my dreams, that teacup is in perfect, garage sale condition. All of the chips are in the correct places. the petite roses faded in harmony of use. pink into yellow, yellow into lavender, green into pearl. My father, sits sketching at the kitchen table. I rest that teacup on its unstable saucer, hearing porcelain against porcelain. There is a faded light coming in through the dusty windows of our kitchen and he rips a sheet out of his sketch pad.

Draw the teacup.

He slides a charcoal pencil and a wide, white eraser to me and I draw. Each little rose, the shadow that the cup casts onto the kitchen table. The decrepit handle. I labor over every little detail and hand it to him. It looks like shit. I know it, he knows it. He erases my clumsy lines and draws graceful ones of his own, his pen lines eradicating the offense of my pencil.

My teacup sits, perfectly replicated on that piece of paper.

I wake up, aching. Aching for my dad, for my teacup. I wish I could find that drawing, piece us back together. Black and white taking place of all the nuance of color. I want to remember him buying me second hand teacups and not perfecting my imperfect drawing. Trying to perfect the imperfect me.

I write

Wednesday, August 11th, 2010

Clay doesn’t like that I blog.

I can understand the feeling, I can understand the not understanding. I can understand hating that your partner finds it easier to write about what they are feeling than talking about it. I would probably feel similarly. When I started all of this, it wasn’t supposed to be me baring my soul.

But.

About a year ago, I wrote this. It wasn’t the first time I’d written about it in detail, but there was something powerful in the sharing. Something powerful in the waves of support, rolling in from directions I never expected.

There was strength.

I realize in posting these personal things, that there is and will be and has been fallout. But the hope, for me, is that someone who needs to see what I’ve been through, will see it. Some girl who is clinging to a thin shred of hope will see that I fought through. That she can, too. That I am still fighting through, with every punch thrown, every victory claimed I am finally accepting that I am worth that fight.

And she is, too.

When I wrote about my dad dying, I had Clay’s support, my family’s support. I also had a flooded email inbox, a twitter stream full of love and facebook plastered with people letting me know how I was in their hearts. Most of whom I’d never met. In these words, in this space, I poured out my secrets, my hurt and my joy. I was embraced.

In my father’s passing, the loss of knowing him was overwhelming. She* sent me a full history of my family. Her beautiful heart filling in the blank spots of my father that I otherwise  would never have known. Support has come from such unlikely places, from the purest of intentions. Without this space, I would never have had my faith in the power of friendship renewed.

I write here because I have a story to tell.

I write here because I am compelled.

I write here to offer what I am and to do so, fearlessly.

I write here because I don’t know what else to do.

Thank you, for being here with me.

*Dawn will help you find your history, too. email her here for details and tell her flutter sent you

The fairytale

Sunday, July 25th, 2010

I was talking to a friend, who had gone through a rough break up earlier in the year. She said something interesting to me, something I’d not considered before.

It’s good for me to hear you talk about Clay. Not just the good things, but when you tell me that you’ve had a hard time, or when you guys are frustrated with each other. That you don’t break, you both always bend.

In ten years, we’ve been through as much as two people can go through, together. One thing remains constant:

We.

Love comes unexpectedly, quietly. It comes despite your intentions to find it or to chase it away. It dispels the destructive lie of the fairytale. It is impossibly imperfect. It fucks up your vision of your charming prince on the white horse. You get your prince, but he rides forward on a nasty old mare with a ratty tail. Your prince may take your hand, gentle and strong, but his hair is all wrong and he smells like the mare he rode in on. He may gracefully dismount that horse and tell you that you are the most lovely creature he has set eyes upon, all while silently farting.

Love doesn’t replace reality. Love simply makes reality a little more bearable. Or less, depending on the day.

Love is never based on need and always based on want. That want should burn, slow and even like an ember. It will not come to you unless, somewhere in your soul, you believe you deserve it. If you do not hold that essential truth, all of the love you attract will ring false. You will wonder why the shine always wears off. Find the deserving you, nurture it. That is the one and only perfect love, because it will attract your match as dust  motes to a beam of sun.

Love is wearing your worst old sweat pants while doing chores and not caring how you look. Love is dirty dishes, squeezing toothpaste from the middle of the tube, putting the toilet paper on backwards. It is falling into bed, exhausted and filthy and safe. It is falling asleep with another person in the bed and for the first time, sleeping without fear.  Love is knowing that sex isn’t always great, isn’t always frequent, but also isn’t a chore. Love scrubs toilets, prepares meals that take hours and doing so after your partner’s snoring has kept you up all night.

It is knowing, that you aren’t always right, but that you always strive to be true. When you fail at that, you suck it up, say you’re sorry, mean it and do better next time. It is granting forgiveness before it is asked for. It is never promising to not hurt the other, because you will. Again and again, intentionally, unintentionally. But, it is trying, with your best intention and integrity to not do so. It is accepting that you too, will hurt. You will get hurt. You will drop your grudge, your shield, your weapons and grant the same forgiveness you seek.

Love is forgetting.

Forgetting old wounds, old wars and being present. It is stepping forward in each moment, it is restful. It is manic. It is all screwy. But it remains. It connects, not to your head and not to your heart. Both of those entities lie in their own way, for their own reasons. It connects with your gut, settles in tandem with your intuition.

It holds you in your weakness and leaves you breathless. It changes you and changes them and yet solidifies what is integral in each. It is sometimes underwhelming, while being utterly remarkable. It is the soul, finding what it can cling to, what gives not purpose, but reward.

Love is a reward. It is the only trophy that  is more work to maintain than it is to win.

It is fundamental, but it is never what we think it will be.

It is always more.

Bali

Monday, July 19th, 2010

I have dreams of Bali, of water, of green. Of cryptic places, where I learn their mysteries. Taste those spices yet foreign to me, to be wrapped in velvet air, wet with promise. Heavy with potential.

Heady, these dreams.

I have dreams of flying, even though I always cry at take off, regardless of my destination. There is something about the gravity of this body, leaving earth. I envy the birds, who kiss the clouds. You know the ones. You used to lay in the grass in your young years, watching the cat shaped clouds pass through the blue. Interrupting an endless expanse. Being mindful of the beauty in imperfection.

Wildflowers grow against all the odds.

I feel my roots scooping down into the earth, holding me to places I’ve never been. Long arms reaching up and out, drinking in the sun I’ve hidden from, for so long. I have my swords, I’ve been a warrior and now?

I lay them down.

medulla oblongata

Sunday, June 20th, 2010

You flit through my thoughts, gracefully entwined in the folds of my brain. Down, deep where no light reaches, there’s you. You wait for quietness, for rest to come forth and demand to be dealt with. There is no escaping this work that I must do.

My broken heart comes as a complete surprise.

I no longer see you, in your baseball cap and your flannel shirts. I no longer see you with your big voice. I no longer see you, head bent over pieces of paper, your pen in hand making life spring where there was none. I can’t feel the warmth of your big hands. I see you small, I see you fragile, I see you without life. I hate that it is this way, today of all days.

Last year I sent you a father’s day card, with only my name signed on it. No words. Me, with all of my words, for you I had none. Today my words tumble over each other in a frenzied sprint to see which ones can reach you first.

I am heartbroken you won’t dance with me when I marry Clay. You’ll never see my house, or meet my dog, or know me. You will never know me. You will never watch Stephen grow through this time into his own, or see Deb become a teacher, or watch Kelsey become an astronaut ballerina veterinarian fairy. You will never fully grasp the strength of Mom, how bold and confident and kind and righteous she is. How she did this all on her own, of her own. You will never see me succeed.

In some small way, relief for your newly acquired lack of suffering makes this all more palatable.

But not today.

Today I mourn you. Today I wish I hadn’t seen you die, even though being there was the closest to God I have ever been. Today I busy myself with the mundane and the necessary to avoid the picture of you, motionless and gone. Because we had unfinished business, you and I. While it is all forgiven, it is not forgotten. Still, in your absence, I have to fold up the textiles of our history. Line up the hems and smooth them carefully to be packed away. I have to do that alone and today, the thought of that is just a little too much.

So, in all of these words that I reserved from you, held from you, hid from you….today the most important to reach you, are “I love you.”

I love you.