I just bought a cane. A dull pink one straight from the pharmacy. If it really helps my balance issue I will special order a cane that will have turquoise and a tiny bit of shiny silver and beautifully polished … Continue reading
Earth to me. Earth to me. Calling all hallucinogenic hopefuls down to reality please. Yes, I know, I was one of them. Me, optimistic, me. Funny, quirky, stupid, friggin me. What the hell did I know? DId you believe me? I believed me. I really did until I woke up in reality which was just recently. I used to think of the world as a good place but that stopped a long, long time ago, probably with September 11th. That shook me up and the world still keeps shaking me up and not with good things. I know, I’m a late bloomer and gullible as all heck. There will always be two different “Me’s.” Before and after.
I’m jaded, Jaded and faded and disillusioned. Know what my mother’s advice was to me? “Lower your expectations, “I did. No rah-rah speech from her which is not exactly her style to begin with. My dad used to be Mr. Educational Talk when he was alive, think positive, be optimistic, you can do it if you THINK you can do it. He gave “pep” talks to anyone who would listen and yes he believed it and I tried to believe it too, tried to change. But, at the end of his life he was terribly sick and depressed and didn’t want to get out of bed or listen to his favorite Viennese waltzes that had delighted him all of his life. He was a shadow of himself, a shell of a man, it went so quickly and so slowly at the same time. It’s hard to remember when he was last really happy, I have a photo of his birthday, I treasure that photograph. The birthday candles were lit, he was beaming with joy, but it was many years before his death.
I’ve gone to the dark side. Plain and simple. Life is about love and love is about abandonment. Gone. Hello, I am here. I love you. I now will leave you. Good-bye. You are born alone and you die alone. You should pretty much plan to be alone a lot in your lifetime because no one loves you like your mother or father does, or your spouse/partner. You love your kids more than anything, they are your heart and soul, the true essence of your being but it is not reciprocal. It can’t be. Their children will be the lights of their eyes, you need to stand back and make room for the next generation. You may still be in the picture but not upfront, from now on you are in the background and that is where you will stay, forever.
Remember that post I wrote on feeling blessedly numb and peaceful? Yes, that’s gone, it left as fast as it came. Had to do with children and my dead father and abandonment issues. Just saying the word in my head brings tears to my eyes. Good old abandonment, am I the only nut job that has this umbrella issue? I would bet not. Life is scary sometimes, it’s the truth.
Many limitations from chronic illnesses: Fibromyalgia, Hashimoto Thyroiditis, I can not walk a straight line, my balance is worse than ever, my stamina is non-existent. I need to go into the city for an appointment to see my rheumatologist and I don’t have the strength to get there. Taking the train and a cab seems impossible, hiring a car service is ridiculously expensive and I can’t afford that. So, I keep postponing it which is the worst thing I can do.
I have to suck up my pride and ask my best friend for help, she’s already offered but I am not good at asking for things. I rather help than ask for help. So, today I have to promise myself that I will ask her for a ride to the city, pay for everything and appreciate that I have a friend I can ask albeit begrudgingly. I know I won’t get better, if anything I’m getting worse.
written words copyrighted
A few days ago I learned a huge lesson when I accidentally ran into a good friend of my mother’s in the grocery store. He asked about “the children” whom he has known since they were 3 and 5. I talked, half laughing and half serious about what they were doing, about how life has changed, how we see them less, and how grown up they are, “He looked at me and said solemnly “Yes, this is truly the hardest part.” Thankful for his understanding, I asked him “when this stage will end?” seeking his sage advice.
He looked at me directly with his intense, blue eyes and he said bluntly” “twenty years.” I thought he was joking but he was dead serious. “Forget it now, leave it and after they get married and have kids they’ll come back but not until then.” After that, he left quickly.
I automatically moved my cart to the fruit and vegetable section and stopped abruptly between the bananas and nectarines and all I wanted to do was cry. The last week had been a difficult one, a confusing one for me and this was the culmination that I didn’t want to hear but needed to hear. Rationally of course, I knew this and was proud of my independent children but emotionally I felt something was amiss. The son with whom I communicate with a glance or one word was acting strangely, apparently, he felt the same way about me. Neither one of us was direct.
I thought I should get an Academy Award for Best Actress, encouraging him to have fun on new adventures, understanding totally why he would stay up at school for the entire week of his break. Apparently I fooled myself but not him. He saw through me before I SAW myself yet I could also read him, he felt a little guilty as well.
What we have learned: Communicate Directly even if it feels hard to do. Do it sooner than later. Me and mini-me know each other so well, but this time, he knew me better than I knew myself. My son communicated with his dad, his dad knowing things but not telling me, he WAS involved even though he didn’t want to be and he refused to play mediator….needless to say, It got messy.
I really do need a job and to get out of the house more. There will be major changes in our lives but they are not here yet. We need to sit tight where we are and I am not known for my patience. Any type of separation for an emotional doll like me feels like someone just lashed out and slapped me in the face repeatedly. So this piece is my own personal time capsule. All my life my goal was to be a mom and raise two wonderful young people and I know I succeeded. Now it’s time for me to do new things, walk away slowly, knowing I did a great job. I’m smiling now, things make much more sense and I’m the one looking back and leaving, it’s so much easier than being left. Let’s take it up again, in twenty years.
Love is not easy, but it is essential. Why do we all go on with our lives? Day after day shuffling our feet, not smiling sometimes for weeks or months, nothing to look forward to, nothing special on the horizon? With so much misery, disease, tragedy, war, incurable illnesses why do we accept it? It comes down to one thing and one thing only: Love. You don’t need a crowd of people to love you, it can be one person or one quirky brown dog, or a petulant cat, maybe a goldfish named Frank, or wildflowers in a garden. We live for love. That is the ultimate dream and if you love one friend and the person loves you back you are incredibly lucky. Everything counts.
Love keeps us going when we want to give up, there’s a thread of love that inspired this blog from my friends. There is love between a group of friends and we have never met, there is a closeness, whose hearts and souls connected on a higher level. We may have originally gotten to know each other by our chronic illnesses, auto-immune diseases or fibromyalgia but that is the last thing we talk about now. If we lived closer to one another, they would be my safe place, my soul sisters. We offer peace, love and kindness to each other, there is no judgment, just support.
I’m not unrealistic I know love isn’t always about happiness, when you love someone so much and they die or move away or just because they grow up and relationships change. Nobody tells you that when you are pregnant, that love also hurts, that love is also loss. Even if they told you, you wouldn’t believe them anyway. When you love your children so much and they walk away as strong, independent adults you are very proud but sometimes, if you are honest, it really hurts. Is it rational? No. It’s purely emotional.
I respect and admire both my children. But, part of love brings with it a searing unavoidable pain and there is nothing you can do about it. Without pain, we wouldn’t know how wonderful love really is. The thread of love, twists and changes, every single day and night. You can’t control it, you can only change yourself and how you deal with the changes, like the waves of a turbulent ocean, strong, beautiful, unpredictable. Unconditional love is for children, it never ends, and I’m sure our children will not understand until they have grown up children of their own.
One day you are holding their hands to cross the street, trading toy cars or having a tea party, watching a shiny red fire truck, or playing dress-up and the next day, or so it seems, they are adults. They are adults you are proud of and cherish but they have their own lives now, and you are not the biggest part of it. “Home” is someplace different now and just because they have a week off doesn’t mean they want to see you. First it’s a shock, then it’s a change but you get used to everything. This was never about guilt. I don’t want you to change for “the next time.” I wanted you to let it go. Growing up sometimes means you can’t always have the last word and sometimes it means letting things go, if not for you, than for me.
“End of conversation. No new conversation.”
I love you, unconditionally with all my heart
Days go by that seem ordinary, nothing really special seems to happen that you can remember. Maybe, we are just too tied up with our everyday lives to take a breath, and break down our day into moments, seconds, even. I try to do that but more often than not I forget and the days blur together like wet watercolor paintings. Once in a rare while something happens that makes you stop right in your tracks and hits you in the heart and stomach like a wonderful, joyous sucker punch. Yesterday, it was meeting Jack.
Even while I am writing this my eyes tear up and I honestly can’t explain why exactly. Is it that for once something good happened, some miracle answered? That the child I met was so beautiful, angelic, almost ethereal ? I was absolutely honored when I was introduced to her son, Jack. His lovely, pink-cheeked mother, looking exactly as she had years ago, introduced me and Jack held up his hand to shake mine. Something my 19 and 20-year-old children would never think about doing. Was I crying about the miracle of Jack or did it evoke memories of the miracle of my son, a junior in college and daughter, a sophomore in college to me? Each their own miracle and I do not say this lightly.
We had a rough time getting pregnant with our son, two and a half years of infertility treatments, shots, blood tests, ultra-sounds, medication, driving to the hospital at 5:30 am for my blood to be tested, for sonograms, back at night for more blood tests, shots. I did all of this in silence because back in the early nineties, no one talked about infertility. It was a shameful secret. My colleagues, boss, family and friends would make such hurtful comments and jokes all the time about “So, when are you going to have a baby?” Grandparents were no different but finally we had to tell them; we thought they would be more sensitive but they weren’t. People say remarkably ignorant and cruel things even though that is not their intention. I’ve always watched my words to other people but this cemented it. When we conceived our son it was indeed a miracle. Our daughter, 21 months later, was again, another wonderful miracle. Just as I was about to call the doctor for treatments, I learned I was already pregnant! Now we are blessed with two kind, smart, wonderful young adults, it seems like just a minute ago that they were still young.
Jack’s mom is a kindergarten teacher who worked across the hall from both of my children’s kindergarten’s teacher. When I ran into her yesterday I knew exactly who she was. I am the type of person that never forgets a face. I, of course, thought she had no idea who I was but she stopped me, she remembered me and my name and my children. This time, I was the one who was shocked and incredibly touched. How amazing that she remembered me! How could that be? That was always my role.
Then there was Jack, beautiful, angelic, pale skinned cherub, Jack. I remember he had to fight to live, I think he was premature but I truly can’t remember the details. I just remember there was difficulty and when he was born, even though I didn’t know his mom directly I was euphoric. I was so thrilled that I ran to buy a present for her son to welcome him into the world. It didn’t matter if she knew who I was or not, I didn’t care. As someone known to be sensitive to other people, her joy was mine too.
Seeing her face yesterday was more beautiful than a sculpture, she glowed with happiness and with pride. I was so touched by her happiness and by young Jack. I thought about it at night and obviously today too. Jack, maybe when you are older your mom will show you this but just know: that as much as everyone loves you know, you were loved by many people before you were even born. It’s like you had your own fan club waiting for you, every single day. We crossed our fingers, we said our prayers because your mom is such a special and warm person we knew she deserved a boy exactly like you.
Dedicated to JP and Jack.
Photograh: credit to photographer
words and lyrics by John Lennon
This year I’ve learned many things, mostly about myself. Because this is timely I thought I would share this first: I will wear white clothes after Labor Day if I want to and if I receive a look of disgust I will throw my head back and laugh. If you dislike it that is your problem not mine.
Instead of pressuring my children to come home for their college breaks (which has never been my style) I want them to do what THEY want and whatever they want to do is fine. I do have expectations, I want to see them on Thanksgiving and Christmas. It would be wonderful to see them on my birthday or any other time but they are in college and have exams, I totally understand. Any other time I see them is icing on the cake.
Speaking of…No matter how old I get, I can’t stop looking forward to my birthday, I’ll be 57 in October and my age doesn’t bother me, nor do the gray hairs that live with my brown curly hair in harmony. Or the laugh lines around my sometimes mischievous green eyes, I’ve earned them, I don’t try to hide them and maybe one day I will learn how to use make-up, but no promises. Lipstick counts, right? That, I wear.
Today I saw a brown bunny skip across the street and the leaves on one tree were starting to turn to that first blush of orange. That is the beginning of the end of summer. It’s going to be a very, very cold winter, it’s always a longer and colder winter than anticipated. I keep my eye on the future hoping we can move someplace warm in the future.
Today I saw my deceased dad’s initials on a white van in front of the drugstore and I couldn’t speak, his initials are signs from him to me, have been for eleven years. This one was a message to pass on to my mom and I will, at the right time. I’ll know when that day comes. Thank you Daddy.
I am not ashamed at all of my Psychic or my Empath abilities, I don’t brag about them, I don’t keep them a secret. They are just a private, integral part of me and I feel blessed to have them. I was a child when I had my first encounter walking down the street in my old neighborhood and thinking about how it would feel if you could read someone’s mind. It lay dormant for years until I was ready. I was always super-sensitive but it worked to my disadvantage before I could use it to help others. Empath intuitives, we understand each other. If anyone has more information about Empath Intuitives or can point me in the right direction, I’d love to hear about it.
I’ve rediscovered the joy of Tracy Chapman’s incredibly beautiful, soulful voice. Her voice is one of the most amazing voices I have heard and I am sad that I forgot her or did she leave us on purpose? In any case, I’m glad I found her again. Her voice, simple, complex, made of velvet and silk. Tracy, you get the feeling, would be a lovely friend, kind, maybe shy at first. The richness of her voice like honey. Here’s to the sad ending of the summer, for me, and the joyous start of winter, for others.
“Today you have been granted the opportunity to go anywhere, do anything, meet anyone, travel in time…whatever you wish, it is yours. Now, there’s a catch. (Isn’t there always?) When you wake up tomorrow… you will not remember any of it.Would you still choose to take the offer? Can you drink in the moment and enjoy it knowing you will have no recollection of what happened? Think about it? How important is a memory?”
I would hop on a first class plane, sipping orange juice and amaretto on my flight to Holland. I stretch my legs and marvel at how wonderfully everybody treats you when you are sitting in first class. I have a menu in my hands and I need to pick what I want to eat for dinner. I decide on the Surf and Turf for my entrée, happy not to have to pick just one item. After the flight attendants take everyone’s order they pass around trays of appetizers: mini lobster rolls, Brie or St. André cheese and crackers, pulled pork sliders and chicken salad with chutney in phyllo dough. Loving food, as I do, my tastebuds are dancing with joy loving the different sensations in my mouth.
I sleep for three hours and by that time the pilot announces our descent which brings me right into the airport/and waiting limousine to take me to the Tulip Festival, now in full bloom. I bask in the beautiful scenery, the rows of color: red, pink, rose, orange, green that stand in line like tiny soldiers. I drink up the sight and as fresh, cold bubbly spring water quenches my thirst, these rows of tulips fill another need. The primordial need to see beauty . Rows upon rows of beautiful tulips, in every color, so vast that you think it is a prop from a movie. Yes, it is real and the gigantic proportions make me feel like an insect crawling on the freshly mowed grass. The scent of the grass tickles my nose and I laugh.
I am here, at the tulip festival, a place I have always wanted to see. I am giddy, my cheeks are pink from the excitement, like the color of one of the rows of tulips, my body trembles. I sit down on one of the many benches they provide for tourists, wooden slated benches, simple, nothing overdone, they mustn’t out-do the beauty ahead of them. Looking around me there are other people, each one, staring at the beautiful scene in front of us. There is no litter here, just rows of flowers, tilting their heads to the sun. Some tourists try to take photographs but you can’t capture an entire field in a photograph. Or the smell. The smell in the air is clean, fresh, with a hint of sweetness, freshly moved grass, and sunshine.
There is nothing else I want to do but sit back, stare and breathe, long, take long, deep breaths. I do not want to sit on a bus like some of the other people, seeing churches and old houses and attractions. I am where I want to be, in the garden of beauty, nature’s beauty and I, a quiet admirer, overwhelmed by this magnificent sight. There is nothing else I want to do but stare and take in this picture of magnificence and beauty. I am where I want to be, in the garden of beauty, nature’s beauty and I a shy yet ardent admirer.
It’s early morning in our house. My husband, Steve, has already left to go to work by train. He has left me coffee to drink in the machine and I greedily reach for it and drink it in two or three big gulps. I go about my chores as usual. I wake up the children who need to get ready for school. Fortunately, I always make their lunches the night before so I don’t have to do it in the morning. I don’t tell the kids but I hate mornings too. I pour cereal and milk, my two kids, 8 and 11 are loud but we laugh a lot. I rush them outside to wait for the bus, get them on the bus and I wave as the bus leaves. They still wave back to me, I know it won’t last very long, they are growing up so quickly.
I go to the grocery store with my list, a long one for four people in the family. I start checking off items on the list. Milk, bread, chicken, cheese, steak on sale, and about ten other items. After I am done I wait on a very long line, reading a trashy Hollywood magazine that I refuse to buy but actually love to read. Finally, it is about to be my turn, I start unloading my cart. I add a pack of sugarless gum because I can’t resist those items at the end of the aisle where their placement seems to stare at you, practically begging you to buy them. My husband calls me”The ultimate consumer ” because I love to see new products at the store. At the very last second, I reach over the counter to stretch and grab just one more thing. It’s something I never do, but I didn’t even think about this, it was impromptu. I reached over the counter and I bought tulips. Pink tulips.
I’ve had enough of my down, depressing mood, my attitude needs to be adjusted. Now. I felt lonely and sad for a few weeks and yes, I did have reasons. It started with the husband. Let me tell you, women friends, I’ve been married for almost twenty-five years it’s no walk in the park. Contrary to what my single friends think, being married is hard work, it’s not just holding hands and looking lovingly into each others eyes anymore, that was then, this is now.
We know that every marriage goes through phases, blah, blah, blah and that it is normal, it’s hard to go through one of those rough patches when your husband doesn’t “get it” and frankly you know, deep down inside, he never will. Let’s be honest, after 24 and a half years he is not going to suddenly turn into the romantic, powerful guy you picture. He just isn’t. But, he may well be your best friend and companion and if you are sad, lonely and feel betrayed by the family you were born into, he’s got your back. He and your children are your family.
He’s the father of your children (the ones that are practically grown-up now) he was the one that said comically “assume the position” when he offered to give me the infertility shots every night at the same time so I wouldn’t have to do it myself. He dried all my tears, he stood up for me when people were mean to me, and yes, he can get nasty but so can I. We’re getting older TOGETHER, at least we have each other to discuss our fears, our anxieties, we have each other to love. I need to remind myself more and more of the wonderful things I DO have, I’m lucky to have a husband like him, he really is my best friend. I am also blessed with amazing kids, both of them, each one so different, such good, smart, warm and witty young adults. I hope that they will think I’ve been a good mother, that’s truly important to me.
I didn’t have the most nurturing mother but she still loved me and worried about me, way too much. My father was very supportive and loving but he had his bad side too, who doesn’t? My sister, well, I wouldn’t choose her to be my best friend, we have exact opposite personalities but when we do get along, it’s great and we can talk for hours. It’s nice to have someone who shares my history if not my utter love for the movie Ferris Bueller’s Day Off one of my all time favorite movies!!! Honestly I think it is one of the greatest movies of all times and she walked out of it. She hated one of my favorite movies. Now we do the opposite of each other, if she loves something I will stay away and vice versa.
I am leaving the past in the past. Forever. I won’t worry about the future, since I have no control over it and I will try to stay in the present, one minute at a time. Appreciate the good things in life, the small moments I can capture in the blink of an eye, a pretty bird with a beautiful song, a bright yellow flower, a cup of coffee with swirling milk. I want to start reading fun books not my depressing ones, and laugh more. Life is too short and way too unpredictable. It can change in a single breath. Please join me and try to enjoy your good times too. Seek them out, you will find them and before long, they will find you.
What happens when your married, dearest friends, stop speaking the same language
yet the giggling of their small children silence them into frozen statues?
I saw her heart being injured again, looking familiar, from the last time, but a little less severe.
Why? Because she knew this feeling already, the first time was an abomination a cruel, nasty, unforgivable hurt that stabbed her heart raw, blood gushing out, out, out.
As her friend I tried to help but I knew I couldn’t.
Did she want to break up her marriage for one cruel and very hurtful remark. He had never laid a hand on her, except that time he pushed her once when they were engaged.
She would not accept that, ever. This was emotional abuse.
For all the years that he was kind, for the children, for the companionship, she stayed.
I knew, she thought, he always kept a secret, sensing something but not the darkness and emotional cruelty underneath all the pleasantries to the public. “A nice guy. “
He did not like confrontation, so he sabotaged their joy.
Now he is nasty and passive-aggressive, is it his age or
depression or a later mid-life crisis?
Yes, all of the above.
I had to ask her: Is he simply stupid with all-things emotional?
She nodded yes. Silently. She nodded yes.
Power attracts her, as it always did, romance too.
He had neither.
We had discussed this topic many times.
I saw her put her head in her thin, translucent hands
rocking back and forth, back and forth
too weary for tears.
Had she finally given up?
I could not hear their whispers anymore
Twenty years are a long time
Knowing them, she thought, they will stay together
and accept mediocrity.
I will ask her one last time and never again: do you realize how little he Hears you,
“The roses” I say, are the perfect example”
Yes, she says. I know.
I don’t ever want him to bring me those cheap gas station roses again.
We have children, she said.
I will not hurt them, we will not hurt them, those precious, light souls.
We do not hate each other, we will be companions.
It’s not always about just us, too many people think that way.
We will stay a family. For us. For them.