Posted in writing

Care

Second Thoughts

Up all night watching election coverage, having second thoughts about caring. Yesterday I voted proudly. I was excited, hoping for a better future. But this is what happens when you lose, you have to ask, “Is it worth caring?” It’s a kind of armor or a shield. To say, “I don’t care,” or “it doesn’t matter,” is a way I protect myself when I feel, like I do now, helpless and small. Funny thing is, it only makes me feel smaller, hiding behind the fraudulent shield. I do care.

My condolence is in that it was a close race. I know I am not alone. Somehow though, that isn’t as comforting as I want it to be. It brings up more second thoughts . . . could I have done something to change this? I haven’t written in months now. Only thrice, since my mother’s death, have I blogged. But everytime I think of her, I am overwhelmed remembering how private she was. She always kept her opinions to herself, suffering in silence. Her memoir reads like a history book, rarely mentioning anything personal. She never said a bad word about anybody. I didn’t even know her political affiliations until I started opening her mail for her. The thanks for donations and requests for more money from Democrats and all kinds of charities, frequently covered her table.

Besides, I didn’t start my blog to talk about politics. I wanted to talk about beliefs, the power of believing and the cruel double-edged sword it is to believe you can make a difference, to believe that the fate of the world could be depending on the power of a single person when they take a leap of faith, believe they can change things and show that they do truly (sigh) . . . care.

Posted in writing

Why Paint?

Paint

Fly with me to a prehistoric time

not in the fertile crescent

but to the northern clime

Where survival hangs by a single thread

to make it throuth the winter long

to survive the lonely months

SnowyPast

 

People need more than meat and fire

through the coldest times,

hope is essential

one must nourish the mind with memory and dream

thus shaman storytellers, ancestors of bards

became the essential thing

With words, rhythm and movement too

they would paint the world in spring

SpringMelt

ice melted, flowing into rainbows of wildflowers

In the dead of winter they took their clan

to distant shores, a far green country

that knew eternal summer

and was ever brimming with the sweetest fruits

and fragrantly intoxicating blossoms

RainbowFlowers

 

Then from each morsel of dried up food

they would extrude the fulfilling memory

of that last harvest, when nuts and grains

were so bountiful they danced with flames

for joy under the full moon

into a starlit night

hearts bursting with love and gratitude

for Mother Earth’s many gifts

HarvestDance

Even then the tales were not ended by far.

For then ’twas time to speak of monsters and heros

of survival against seemingly invincible foes

with wit and wisdom, strength and perseverence,

faith and charity, love and longing

made narratives to stir the heart

a hundred days and more, this way could pass

in a twinkle of the mind

Hero

so that when spring at long last erupts,

the clan emerges their winter’s den,

maybe a little weak,

mayhaps a bit weary,

But stronger by far in will

and in harmony for sharing the journey

in such adventures of the mind together

unified

Posted in writing

Goodbye Mom

Stubborn

The swollen fingers were cool and lifeless, gently as I could I slipped my hand in an gave a little squeeze. Earlier in the morning I had gotten three or four good squeezes back, as I talked her through the ultrasound of her heart, now as massaged them their was only a softness without response. My nephew held her other hand. I can’t say what made me look up. There must have been a sound, but it seemed distant, perhaps in the hall. I only know I looked and there was the flat green line and the number zero.

I tried to shout but my mouth was suddenly too dry. I turned to the others, I knew I was supposed to yell “code” or “code blue” that was what I was trained to do, but this was my family. So instead I said “heart rate zero.”

My shout came out little louder than a whisper, they looked at me confused. I repeated it louder, but then the nurse was there. The nurse’s face, can I describe it? Serious as a heart attack and mournful as if . . . as if it was her own mother in that bed. We moved away from the bed to give them room but that was not enough. “Get out,” she shouted.

We obeyed and made our way out the door. There I paused, turned and looking directly at the pale face on the pillow, said “Good-bye Mom.”

Not too stubborn to forgive . . .

As “code blue” came over the intercom and a line of doctors and nurse rushed in, the tears started, and I allowed myself to cry. I hugged my nephew and was surprised to feel him hug back. I can’t be stubborn anymore. I know she wanted all of us to make peace with each other. That would have been her last wish had she regained consciousness. I know it. I have to try again to find that middle place between protecting my children (and myself) and renewing relations with my siblings and their families. Wish me luck!

I had been taking time off from my blog to type up my mother’s memoirs (and garden.) At best I am only a third of the way through the former. She died on the first of August and left me the guardian of a few journals, some old letters, boxes of photos and piles of desk calenders. My mother hated to throw such thing away and would hate to have me toss them without a glance now. All my instincts tell me, this is my path, to finish what I started, to share her story, the best way I can. How will I live, pay the bills and take care of my family? I don’t know. Wish me luck, again!

 . . . just too stubborn to quit.

Posted in Spring 2016, writing

Blue Sky

Sky

The more doors seem to shut against me, the more I appreciate that, writing is my blue sky. This is where I fly.

 

It is easy to feel trapped, when you devote yourself to others. Invisible chains hold you fast to home to care for those in need, but still your spirit cries to find a way you can be freed.

It beckons like the blue sky to take you somewhere else. It calls you to lay down the burdens too heavy on your shoulders.

We all need a piece of sky where our souls are healed. For some it is in music sung through heartfelt tears, others a dance floor where we let go any fears, for me it is in stories, words that let me shed the worries of the last ten years.

Digital Camera
A Summer’s Blue Sky
Posted in Gratitude, Spring 2016, writing

Dancing With Skeletons

Closet

Last week I opened my closet and found an old forgotten suitcase,

opening it a little disaster hit me in my face.

Like opening any forgotten object left to rust,

at first it was hard to breath through the smell of dust.

It’s strange how such things, closets and suitcases, open and close with a “snap!”

yet change our lives permanently like a bear trap.

With truth hidden away, none can see the whole picture

like seeing only headlines in a newspaper, rumor and lies taint the mixture.

The misplaced anger and accusations make me question,

“What was the matter with me thinking the past I could mention?”

If only I could pretend I couldn’t hear

all my skeletons whispering there.

It is a tempting way to waste my time

pretending I have a different life in a different world far faraway from mine.

In an old folder pages and pages of my handwriting

remind me of the escape that didn’t change things.

To grow and share like a green giving tree is my mission

but I am fettered by darkness and superstition.

It’s a tricky challenge, on my own to stay,

to face the dark and sweep cobwebs away,

without damaging the delicate and innocent.

That is definitely not what I meant.

 

I want to cross that street,

with my words we can meet.

Then we may unveil the contrast between

what we say and what we mean.

I can feel the truth of it, before I find my voice and sing.

I must open these doors, clean off everything.

Place it in the sunlight shining

and embrace the healing that love, compassion and forgiveness bring.

This is why being a writer is my only choice

without it, I would have no voice.

Thank you wordpress, the daily post and all who read my posts, for giving me a place

to open these closets and dance with my skeletons in a joyous embrace.

As I muddle through trying to cope,

this is the place I nurture hope.

Posted in Winter 2015 - 2016, writing

Writing Lost and Found Again

Learning Style

I remember what I learn if I write it down in my own style in my own words that’s how I learn. I don’t like groups, socializing is its own struggle. Just me, the pencil, the blank notebook, a small hand held pencil sharpener and the source from which to learn. Writing to learn, writing to think, writing to share, writing is my connection to the world.

Sixteen years ago, my dream of being a writer slipped through my fingers.The winter of 2000 I was taking a writing class at my local community college. I had an article, describing the special challenge of having two autistic sons. I’d already submitted it to a magazine and gotten back a positive response. But I needed to focus more emphasis on what works, the note said.

It didn’t sound too hard but it ended up being impossible for two unexpected reasons.

First, I wanted to talk it over with my writing teacher, to make sure I understood what was wanted and get her advice on how to do it. My professor got hit with medical problems, she needed eye surgery. What was supposed to only take a few weeks, took months and no experienced substitute for the class was found.

Second though and far more devastating was my third and most invasive visit by protective services. There were two women, one much bigger and stronger looking than the other. Somehow you can feel it when you see two, they are preparing to take the children away immediately. I still don’t know how I got through that one. When they plan to take the kids away, they ask to see everything, even if it has nothing to do with the original accusation. They asked to see the inside of my refrigerator and kitchen cabinets, my linen closet, garage, everything. More than what they asked to see was the way they looked at everything, examined it, judged it, looked at each other and nodded when they found anything they might use against me. I had no idea what it was about, when they said they needed to talk to my daughter, alone.

It turned out it was all because of a misconstrued comment by my ex-boyfriend who hadn’t been around for months. He was quoted as saying my garage was used as “time-out” by my kids. Well, knowing this boyfriend I recognized the statement. He’d said it to me. By time-out he meant a place to take a break of their own free will and jump on the old mattress that had been in there. Time-out in the usage I had grown-up with where you need a breather playing tag or some other game, make a T with your hands and say “time-out.”

Ironically, I’ve never used time-out as the punishment some do because I feel the old fashioned “go to your room,” is far more fair. The point of “time-out” is to give the child a chance to take a break and calm themselves. How is the child supposed to work off their energy and frustration being made to sit in a chair with you watching? In going to their room, the child is allowed the dignity of being able to throw their toys, punch pillows or talk to their teddies in private. I rarely sent my children to their rooms but my daughter made the most of it by loudly telling her stuffed animals how unfair I was.

Sadly I had to admit that it did make it sound like I was locking the children in the garage. I had closed up the garage after my boyfriend left because I didn’t like the children playing there without supervision. The padlock I had placed on the double doors was incriminating. If my daughter, my seven year old daughter, had not been able to tell the workers that it wasn’t true . . .

She said she had a hard time not laughing. I am well known, by those who do know me, for being far too lenient in the matter of discipline. She knew I was the last person in the world who would do such a thing.

But the incident left me feeling violated and paranoid. My children became the last thing I wanted to have anyone read about. Sixteen years it’s taken to come back and try again to connect with the world through writing.

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