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Quieter

 

 

quieter

 

Said goodbye to my son this morning and actually did a typing motion with both of my thumbs as I said “check in!”  This is what it’s come to.

I miss him lately.

This weekend he’s off to judge a speech and debate event in Phoenix. Then house sitting – then working – then I might see him Monday.

Ok, I miss him a lot lately.

I often think about those posts I wrote when he was still in school (High School) and I was lamenting how fast time was flying by even back then!

I didn’t even have to miss him then.

It’s hard for every parent I’m sure – but when you’re a single parent and nearly two decades have revolved (happily) around one person and suddenly they don’t need you – and their exit date is looming well … it’s disconcerting to say the least.

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It’s hard to talk about it with anyone – because I usually get the ‘Yeah well, kids grow up, that’s how it works!’ speech. Or, ‘Find a hobby!’

I KNOW this is how it works.

I want him to thrive and explore, stumble a little – learn from his mistakes, brush himself off and thrive again.

I want him to spread those amazing wings!!

This is me remember?!  The one who made it a priority to get him a passport! The one who sent him off to England to see more than our backyard.

I was even prepared for him to not want to return from that trip.

So my point here is – there are no apron strings tying him to me. The umbilical cord is cut.

 

But oh how I love him.

For all this time, he’s been the constant in my life.

We’ve had ups and downs but always had each other.

 

 

I don’t laugh as much anymore – because he’s not around much anymore. I feel his absence in ways I can’t even explain.

 

No, he is not responsible for my happiness.  No, it is not his fault that I feel this way.

I am simply sharing these raw facts honestly with you.

Because if I am being completely honest – I have been changing, and it’s not for the better.

Things I used to love to do, I’m not doing anymore. I feel unmotivated – a little lost.

I’ve wondered, is it because I’m alone with myself and really not sure who I am without the ‘mom’ tag on?

Then I realize that probably it’s a culmination of many years and many things that I’ve been able to sweep aside to some degree, because I had something more important to focus on.

My boy.

 

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We all go through this at some point. ‘Finding ourselves’ – and while that phrase is often mocked – it is a relevant phase.

 

But I thought I had found myself.

Now it feels like I lost her – our hands slipped apart in my crowded head.

 

 

I’m the first to admit my writing has gone downhill.

The first to agree ‘I don’t have a life’ when people joke about me never wanting to go anywhere.

I still say things at work or in groups that aren’t understood and end up feeling like an alien.

I don’t fit in.

I’ll mention thoughts that pop into my head and others look at me like I’m crazy. “You’ve never thought that?” I’ll ask. “Um, no.” is the usual response.

 

So I get quieter.

 

I thought the answer was to put more of myself ‘out there’. Be braver. Share more. Embrace the part of me that is clearly different from most. But then I was told I thought too much – shared too much.

 

So I’m getting even quieter.

 

Sometimes I feel so locked inside myself that I could scream.

 

I go through the motions of ‘fitting in’ knowing I’m not pulling it off.

Then every once in a while – the couch across from me is filled by this person who gets me.

Who makes me laugh.

Who has similar thoughts and similar humor … and I am happy.

And I fit in.

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“What are you going to do when I leave?” he once asked.

I didn’t really answer. I sarcastically brushed him off with a ‘I have always taken care of myself’ – but what I was really doing was taking care of him.  And that’s all I wanted to do.

What will I do when he leaves?

I don’t know.

I don’t know that answer.

I haven’t got to that chapter yet – and I don’t read ahead.

But I will miss him. That much I know.

son

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Strawberries, Scandals and Cloud Punching

 

 

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It’s been a long productive week at the new office.   Punctuated by singing along to awesome songs, random dance breaks and lots of laughter with my bosses.  The new business I’m so fortunate to be a part of  became official last week and my desk is amazing and stocked and I am now the Operations Manager of ‘Company X’.

This is one of the parts of  my life I don’t share here.  No last names, no addresses, no personal identifying information.

Seriously though, if anyone did some minor sleuthing, the gig would be up.

Still, I try to maintain some anonymity for the sake of others more than for myself.

This has been very difficult lately.  I want to burst I’m so full of scandals and hypocrisy that I can’t share.

I mean, I COULD, but then I’d have to live with myself.

This is occurring more and more often by the way.

The live with myself part, not the scandals and hypocrisy.

I’m still without my son.  He’s spending his weeks staying with my mom across the river and his spare time with his first love  who will be leaving the state next month for college.

It has been weird without him.

Okay, I have been weird without him

I’ve taken talking to myself to a whole new level.  I’ll have internal dialogues, then out of no where, verbalize a portion of it.

Example: I’ll be having a conversation with someone in my head (please tell me I’m not the only one  who does this) then say something like “because it’s blue” out loud.

I’m one more week alone away from shopping cart mumbler.

Oh, and I can’t be still.  I’m not reading anymore, not sitting outside listening to music while looking up at the stars – I’m not drawing or painting or taking my camera out on adventures.

I am back in my little hamster wheel of ‘wake up – bathe – dress – tend to animals – exit house – work – return from work – eat something unhealthy – prepare for bed’.

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Here’s me on the couch trying for a serene look – mostly I just liked the light and since the dog now leaves when I start to put my ipad in camera mode (how does she know???) – and since NO ONE else is in my house, I have become my subject.

So fake though.  Which is not how I am.  It’s a snapshot of the shell.  Inside I was still hurting and thinking and not serene at all.

The point is – this past year has left me so spun and undone that I can’t seem to find the energy to do the things I used to enjoy.

I put so much effort and faith into a person and project that I lost a bit of myself.

I put myself on the back burner and looked forward to promises of such an amazing future that I was okay with that.

Of course, gullible me believed what was never to be.

There are two people on my shit list right now.  They need to be very cautious how they proceed because I’m not above doing a public service and sharing what I know and supporting it with evidence.

I would do this in case any other gullible person might have either of them on a pedestal and be naive enough to trust.

Wow.

That just came out of nowhere.

Still, I have not named names.

Just watch it – you both know who you are.  So ‘good’ and selfless in public and so not in reality.

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Let’s talk about sandwiches for a moment.

With Nic gone, I haven’t really been shopping for food.  I have made random stops for ice cream, but I don’t think that counts.

It has been enlightening though, pretty sure this allergy free girl might have a touch of lactose intolerance.  Although, the quantities in which I’m consuming said ice cream may render anyone intolerant of dairy.

Sandwich.

I was making lunch last week – and since I was out of greens for my cheese and veggie sandwich, I decided on peanut butter and jelly.

I got as far as the peanut butter and realized there was no jelly.

Okay, there sort of was jelly … it was in the pantry in a container and had liquified to jellorage status (Jelly/beverage – does that work?  Might that catch on?)

It sure as hell wasn’t going on my sandwich, I knew that much.

I had some strawberries that weren’t getting any firmer, but hadn’t reached ‘throw me out!’ stage yet – so I got creative and chopped them up and placed them on the peanut butter.

(This may already be a thing.  I’m reminded of when I opted for flour tortillas in lieu of bread when making a grilled cheese and meat concoction – ‘savory crepe’ I called it.  Then had the embarrassing moment of my friend Micah pointing out ‘did you just invent the quesadilla?’ Groan.)

Anyway it was amazing!

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And life is like that too.

Improvising when something is lacking in life – coming up with a solution that turns out to be better than the norm.

I actually did sit outside yesterday at sunset – and saw the most amazing cloud with sun streaming through it.  I snapped a bad photo of it on my ipad (Butters fled) and shared it.

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What I was thinking was it was beyond silver lining status – it was light and goodness breaking though the dark cloud with determination.

And that’s my next plan.

Stream through the dark clouds with truth – and sunlight and metaphorical chopped strawberries.

Still looking for good.  Still believing in light and love.

But not afraid to call ‘bullshit!’ either.

Gullible girl is gone.

 

 

 

 

 

Gently into water

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The thing is … lately I feel like I’ve been ‘wrapping things up’.

Letting those who mean something to me know it.

Giving back treasured memories of the past to the people they belong to.

My writing has not been good lately.

I know it.

My positive attitude has taken a turn.

I know this too.

I know it – and don’t have the energy to change it.

I’ve reached emotional, physical and mental exhaustion.

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Someone received an arrangement at work a couple of weeks ago – and I became caretaker.

The vase was bursting with vibrant color and fresh cut blooms.

As they faded and withered, I removed them.

One by one.

I kept doing this – refusing to throw them all out because some part of the whole had passed on.

It came down to one stemless flower this past week.

I found the smallest container I could, and placed it gently in the water.

I couldn’t find it in my heart to throw it out while it still had some life in it.

While it still looked so beautiful.

It wasn’t finished.

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Contrary to this, I found my pen writing the most obscene sentence in my own diary last week.

That I had been having fleeting thoughts of death.

Mine.

Thinking that perhaps all that I was here to do had been done – and all that I hoped for might never be.

Perhaps not meant to be.

And that ink bled out onto the page with such rawness and so bravely – that I allowed the pen to finish the sentence.

And I’m not ashamed.

Because thinking of things does not make them so.

And because allowing myself to admit something so dark, even to the pages of a book no one will read – shocked me necessarily.

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I find the smallest light I can find – and gently place myself in it.

I give my soul water – salty – and shed when I am alone.

I continue to share my memories with those who made them with me.

I don’t stop telling people how important they are – how loved.

And I steady myself for what the future might hold – and know that I’m strong.

 

 

 

Bugs and Monsters

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Just ate a bug.

I’m sat outside, with my coffee – reading and reach for my cup and … ate a bug.

Then I looked up (after not so delicately thrusting my finger in my mouth to fish out the foreign coffee additive) and suddenly felt very lonely.

I don’t do ‘lonely’.

I like my own company.

So let me tell you, this feeling was quite a surprise to me!

From spitting out an unidentified flying protein, to contemplating my shelf life.

Just. Like. That.

Ms. Independent will be Ms. Depends.

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Tutting at ‘those kids today’ and shuffling around in house slippers.

Probably eating bugs and not even realizing it.

Good news is I’m good at ‘alone’.

Earlier a THUD came from my bedroom.  Without even thinking about it, I calmly got up and went to investigate.

It’s seriously ridiculous how unafraid I am of bumps in the night.  I’d make for a boring horror movie.

They’d start the ‘increasingly intense’ music, pan to me rolling my eyes and lazily getting up to check out the threat.

“Cut! Can you try to look concerned?”

“Yeah – sure.” *Sigh*

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“ANNNND – ACTION!”

Thud.  Eyeroll.  Feigned mild concern.

“Cut!”

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Maybe it’s because I know monsters don’t live in the dark – and that people who mean you harm don’t wait for you to turn out the lights …

Or maybe, it’s because I’ve vanquished so many monsters that the only things that alarm me are bugs in my coffee – and the prospect of depends.

It’s what you say when you’re alone …

This is my 10th day alone in the house.  I’ll preface the rest of the crap I’m about to type with the following: I don’t mind hanging out alone.  I like myself.  Therefore, I like my company.

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Now onto the crap.

It’s quite a thing to spend time with ‘you’.  Only you.  Face to face with you you you.  No buffer – no distraction.

I was doing okay.

Although, I’ve gained 7 pounds – which, will please those who believe me to be underweight, but it doesn’t please me.

Been talking to myself (and the dog) a lot. 

I’ve come to the conclusion that it’s not that you do talk to yourself, what you have to pay attention to is what you are saying when you’re alone.

My verbal quips have been quite upbeat – so I’m no lost cause by any means.  Yet.

Last week, every work day felt like it needed to be Friday.  It was quite possibly the longest week in history.   By Thursday, a little ‘lonely’ was creeping in once I did get home.  Couldn’t sleep. 

Put ear buds in and decided to dance.

Just dance.

I took the volume all the way up to 11 and busted some moves to this:

It felt great.  Seriously.  No matter what your genre of choice is – tell me you can’t turn this up and not at least tap a toe.  C’mon.  Try.

I happen to love everything from Public Enemy to Mozart – so I’m all over the place with my musical escapes.

Then I slept naked.  Yup.  I went for it.  I was modest in front of the dog though.

Then came the weekend.

I was so ready for Friday. OH so ready.

My heart has been hurting lately, and not for any physical reasons.

The heart breaker is feeling her heart breaking.  And it sucks.

Then I stumbled upon this welcome distraction:

I wish I had written down every single quote that made my jaw drop in ‘OMG – that is SO true’ or ‘OMG – that is SO me’ fashion – because I couldn’t find any of them online.  I’ll be paraphrasing this amazing show that I finished watching all 13 episodes of Season 1 of today.

Orange Is The New Black is AMAZING.  And lives up to its tagline – ‘Every sentence is a story’.  The writing is phenomenal. 

Abso-fucking-lutely amazing.

There was a moment when Piper, the main character, is having her hair washed by a fellow inmate.  She says something along the lines of ‘it just feels so good to be touched.’  Yeah.

I know that feeling.  Not sex.  Just … to be touched.  By another human being.  A hug – a shoulder rub – a tug of the hair.  Just – human contact.

Of course, it’s Saturday, so I will be leaving the house.  To another place with no other humans. Besides my full-time weekday job – I do a side job.  Not only do I process the loans for the realtors I work with, I scrub their toilets and empty their trash too. 

From solitary to work detail.  A furlow. LOL!

I AM GRATEFUL.  I feel I need to say that. 

But – to be honest, I wish I didn’t have to have a side job.  It’s something I take pride in, but as I’m cleaning for that extra income, I do feel a bit sad.

I work really hard but, what have I done for me?    

I won’t let anyone else do anything FOR me – and I don’t have the energy or motivation to change my situation.   There’s a problem.  

I got Nic out of the Country … and he’s having a great time in England.  So that counts.

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Meanwhile, I’ve become this self-imposed Segregated Housing Unit. 

I’ve got to find out if I’m waiting in vain for something my heart wants – and take the time to get over that dream if that is the case. 

And find another dream. 

Not another person – let me be clear on that too.  Because it’s taken me my whole life to stumble upon someone whose heart I would not break.

I don’t have the desire to entertain the notion of anyone else.

There’s so much more I want to purge onto this virtual page – but can’t.  I hate that. 

I hate editing myself. 

Perhaps that’s why I talk out loud in the privacy of my home – why I dance when no one is watching. 

http://youtu.be/nryWkAaWjKg

And Netflix, could you hurry up with Season 2?