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Of Love and Uncertainty

I haven’t mused from the laundromat for a while – and that’s been odd.  My weekends have been filled, to my delight.

When I DO go, I do try to be there when my laundry lady is there also.  She told me I was missed.

I believe her, because I miss her too.  The routine – the ‘regulars’.  But I wouldn’t trade another Sunday there for what I have now.

 

I’ll start with this, I’ve been so happy lately that even my son, (who has moved again across country and who I haven’t seen since January 6th of this year) has commented on it.

Keep in mind, our chats have been minimal and our communications brief.  So, it’s a pretty big deal that he sees a change in me.

My heart is more peaceful, my anxiety lessened.  I smile more – I treasure moments no matter how fleeting.  I’ve been exploring, forcing myself out of my comfort zone.  Doing things to make someone else happy and in making the effort, found myself happier too.

Life has taken a turn and whether it’s for a reason, a season or a lifetime – I’m just very glad it happened.

And yet, I still find myself waiting for the ‘other shoe to drop’.

As if I’m not worthy of a happy ending.  Or, just so used to not expecting one that the possibility is absurd.

I think the more I let go and the more I trust that I can pinch myself and not wake up, the less I’ll be waiting for things to go wrong.

I’m still also painfully aware at how brief and unpredictable life can be.

I’ll be participating in a 3K walk to benefit my sweet friend with stage 4 cancer on Saturday.  There isn’t a day that goes by that I do not think of her.

Every visit is cherished.

I find myself wanting to curl up next to her and just … be.  Of course, it hurts her too much to move or be bumped or even to hug.  So, her toes are mine.  I gently rub her feet in some attempt to offer comfort where I know I can’t.

I think I’ve been living for her lately too.

Pushing myself with the ever-present thought, ‘She would LOVE to be able to do this!’  I’m not just talking about adventures.  It’s the little things like,  getting out of bed, standing in the shower, dressing myself.  Standing in line at a store!  (I WILL give you the lecture if I hear you complain you know – “You realize there are some people who would give ANYTHING to be in this line?!”)

I  especially thought of her when it was finally cool enough to join the man who has my heart in the desert.  She would have given anything to sit where I sat after navigating a climb.  She would have been in just as much awe of the view as I was and welcoming the sweet sleepiness that was sure to follow that night.

So there it is.

My life at the moment.

Filled with hope and also with impending sadness.

Certainty and uncertainty.

Immense joy knowing that I am capable of such love now and willing to offer it with no expectations.

To them both.

Knowing that losing either of them is going to break my heart.  And yet, knowing them for however long I have makes it most definitely worth it.

 

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Musings from the Laundromat – Tick Tock edition.

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Long chats with my Laundry Lady and Glaucoma Man today.

I gave Laundry Lady my phone number in case she ever needs anything.   She doesn’t have a car.  Depends on her roommate to get her to work and home.  She’s been working there for over 8 years – no vacation pay – no benefits.  I learned so much more today about her.

She mentioned she hates working the morning shifts, but loves seeing me.  That made my day.  Because I feel the same way.  For over 6 years I’ve waddled into that building, weighted down by my laundry baskets.  And I can count on seeing her sweet face and her beautiful smile.  I can count on her putting on the coffee and having a brief chat.

I’m making a point of being more involved and engaged with people in my life.

-Tick Tock-

Received some bad news recently about someone I love dearly … And it rocked my world.  I’ll keep them anonymous, but, the news was the ‘C’ word.

Inoperable ‘C’ word.

And what angers me so much is that this person is so very good and kind and loving and giving.  And too young for such a diagnosis.

This person has so much to share with the world and the world needs them!

It’s that stage of life now isn’t it?   Late 40’s.  Where you start hearing about people falling ill or worse.

-Tick Tock-

There are some other people in my life, who will also remain anonymous, who have been madly in love for over 41 years.   I mean, seriously, deliriously and obviously in LOVE.  Still get butterflies when they see each other.  It’s palpable.  Their love is something you can almost reach out and touch it’s that real.  They’re ridding themselves of material things and readying themselves for retirement.   They want to spend the rest of their lives traveling and loving one another.

I think that’s beautiful.  And I find myself envying what they have in a non-green way.  I’m happy for them, so very happy for them – but yes, there is a part of me that knows I will never have that and a part of me yearns for it.

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-Tick Tock-

I’m flying again on Thursday – to see that someone special again.  Spreading my wings, exploring options – overcoming fears and giving life a look.

I will say that I AM fortunate.  I’ve done more in my lifetime than most.  Traveled and soaked up other cultures, beliefs and people.

From France to India in a bus full of eclectic passengers.  I’m forever grateful for that experience.

-Tick Tock-

Had an amazing day yesterday seeing another person I love.  A dear friend and practically a brother.  We grew up together in England.  His mother is my God Mother and there was a point our parents, who are still dear friends, lived together.  We reenacted a photo taken 43 years ago.

Here it is.

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But as I was leaving, I had a sinking feeling we may never see one another again.  And it made me sad and so very aware of time.  Time and the passage of it.  Of life and its beautiful uncertainties.

My son leaves in January.  I was reading a Facebook memory yesterday (thank goodness for those by the way) and it was me sharing my gratitude of spending time with him.  5 years ago yesterday we were curled up on the couch watching ‘Up’ and I expressed how precious I knew that moment was.

I was in that moment and knew with my whole heart how important it was just to spend that time – because life is so fleeting.

I hope I never forget to feel that way.

No matter what happens, I’ll endeavor to cherish the important people and things.

Because once the curtain comes down, there’s no more time to say “I love you.”

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And the clock ticks on.  Life is in session.

Musings from the Laundromat: Limping Manatee and a Surrogate Angel edition

Laundry lady has bronchitis – but is here anyway.   It is SO humid inside this building today.  I feel like I’m breathing in water.  That can’t be good for bronchitis right?  Or is it the opposite?   I can’t remember and I’m the Queen of Bronchitis.

Outside it’s grey and cold.  I debated putting off the trip when I woke shivering this morning.

I had slept fitfully.  Tossing and turning and looking at the clock.

I had arranged for a friend to take my mum some lunch and a smile from me.   A surrogate to bring a little sunshine to what is a dreary routine day for my vigilant and loving mum.

Every time I woke, I looked at the clock trying in my sleepy state to do the math to figure out what time it was in England.  Felt like a bittersweet Christmas Eve.

THANK YOU to that friend by the way.  I think I can use her first name without her minding.  Theresa and I went to primary school together.  And, she just happens to be married to the brother of my first love.  Crazy how things turn out eh?

So now I’m here.  I decided it wasn’t going to get any warmer from the looks of it and would be nice to get everything done and relax for the remainder of my last day off.

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In other news, Butters, the cowardly manatee, injured herself.

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She started having difficulties getting around about a week and a half ago?  I thought perhaps it was the shift in the weather.  It’s been cold, windy and rainy in our desert.  On some days colder than the East Coast!  I did the math, realized we’ve had the pleasure of her company for almost 5 years and she was certainly no pup when she found us.

But then she started to noticeably limp.

I checked her legs – she didn’t cry out.

Checked her paws and pads for those evil rams heads that inevitably find our feet at least once a week.

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Nope.  Nothing.

Then I had a small panic.

I couldn’t afford to take her to the vet – and lamented this on Facebook.

Someone mentioned ‘Care Credit’ which I applied for the very next day and qualified for.  Made an appointment and yesterday afternoon we were off to the vet.

I make that sound pretty smooth right?

Um – no.

Butters on leash, realized we were exiting ‘the gate’ AND we were headed to the car and proceeded to  freak OUT.

I got her in the back seat then she upped her freak out a notch.  Her excitement had me blocking the back seat with part of my arm whilst trying to change gears with the same arm.   (Well, the hand attached to the same arm – you know what I mean.)  So, I’m elbowing the divide between us and making cooing sounds until we arrived.

Now she realizes where she is and is immediately overcome with sensory overload.

Hyperventilating began.  As did excited shaking.  And wind passing.  And panting.  And it was 20 minutes of this fun mode until we were put into a room.

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For some reason, she also managed to shed more???  I kid you not, there was hair EVERYWHERE.  I kept petting her, it kept coming.  I mean, she worked herself up so much she was losing her hair. Lol.

At this point, I’m thinking the vet is going to assume I brought her in for an exorcism.

She was a trooper for the staff.  (Okay, I did have to get on the scale with her to get her weight, but other than that and trying to sit on the thermometer while inserted, she did very well.)

The vet examined the offending leg.  OH! I should point out that the vet only knew which leg to examine after watching videos of her limping that I had taken the night before.

Because, the minute we got there, guess who was no longer limping?   Ding! Ding! Ding!  You win.

Yup, Butters, in her adrenaline pumped state – suddenly had no signs of an issue.  Other than mental.

Her range of motion was amazing (better than mine actually) – and other than a few joint pops as the vet pulled and bent and prodded, he concluded she had just over extended or sprained the leg.  (Not surprising since she thinks she’s super dog every time she fly’s off the porch in pursuit of a rabbit or car.)

She has  anti-inflmmatories to take and is meant to chill out for 6 days.

Didn’t end up having to use the Care Credit as no X-Ray was taken.  If she isn’t improving in the coming week though, that’s the next step.

So it’s been quite a week.

Nic and I spent the rest of the evening gorging ourselves on Chinese food (courtesy of a gift certificate I received for Christmas) and watching a movie together.

Butters limped around the house as if nothing note worthy had happened that day.

Which is good, because I think she’s right pawed, and it would be difficult to write in her little diary if she had thought it worth noting.

 

Finding a poem – and him loving another

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I found a poem today … from my love.  To someone else.

And I adored it.

We both have yesterdays.

Those yesterdays make up who we are today.

Those yesterdays made the timing just right for what we have now.

Who would we be if we didn’t experience heartache, longing, change?

Who would we be if we were stagnant?  Not growing, not hurting – figuring out what worked in our lives and what didn’t?

I cherish his memories.  Because not only did he care for people, but he shared with me that he cared for them.  I couldn’t love someone that discounted their past.  Who wrote if off like it never happened.

Then it would mean I never happened.

I’m not jealous.  I have such confidence in our love it’s bonkers.

I cherish every step he took – every painful step he took and kept walking!!

He has a girl – that he adores.  Her name is Amy.  And for a while, I had a fleeting problem with him sharing a house with her.  Silly.  But, you know how I am.  Honest. This feeling cropped up knowing he had a past, and hopes, and dreams with her – and I was on the heels of falling in love.

Silly, because, she’s pretty freaking amazing.   And she was there for him.  When he needed her most.

I adore her too.  And she reached out to me the other day – and while we only exchanged two IM’s, the mutual respect was there.

Things happen for a reason.

And I know that amazing woman will always be part of our lives.  And she must be.  Because she seees in him what I see in him.  She loves him.

And he loves her.

And he has never made that a secret.  And I love that about my  future husband.

He adores who he adores – endlessly.

That makes me feel safe.

The honesty.  The dedication.  The loyalty.

What he gives to those he loves.

I love.

 

My Favorite Day

This is it.  January 14th, 2015.

Who has had to wonder?

If you were asked “what was your best day ever?”

Today I had a shocking announcement that I didn’t expect, respect and love from my work family, amazing quality time with my son AND my mom stopped by and looked beautiful.

Today is my best day ever.

Let’s start with the shocking announcement.

So – I always have my ipad on charge at work, and IM sometimes with my son and (embarrassed face) collect my chips during the day  for a game I like to play at night.  All I do is take less than one second to ‘tap’ collect every half hour.

I got a ‘ding!’

It was a Facebook announcement.

A life event even.

I went to work today on probably less than 4 hours sleep.  I’ve been sick – I did not sleep well last night, and completely determined to BE at work.

You need to know this.

So … I have been editing myself lately.

Out of respect for the person I wanted to scream about.

James D. Foster.   Remember him?  Look up Drawing the Invisible.

This guy was one of my best friends in the college days.  And, had a crush on me.

And, as stupid as I was, I didn’t know it.

 

He was beautiful and talented and we would watch cartoons at his house and we rode together to school.

I loved him from day one.

I also had at least three relationships while he looked on and stood beside me.

I did not know.

We worked on a comic idea that was a tangent (shock!) off of a short story I wrote.  He illustrated.  He is a fucking AMAZING artist.

One very horrible night – he was beside me.  And wrote poems.  He wrote them and I read them and I was so young and selfish and ignorant that I just STILL didn’t get it.

Then we lost touch.

This was the 80’s.

I NEVER stopped thinking about him.  Not ever.  Not when I was married, not when I was divorced, not when I had a baby, not when I was married again – NEVER.  I searched for him because …

Because you know there’s always there’s this person that means so much to you – who KNEW you and GOT you and – you friend zoned?

Yeah.

STUPID!

Us then

Us then

us then again

us then again

But I realized it sooner than later and my search came up with people with the same name, in the same town I last saw him and it wasn’t him.  But I had fun communicating with them. LOL!

Fast forward.

I found him.

Through an Ex.

He was friends with him.

US now:

(Yeah – he still pulls a face at the camera. lol.)

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(FYI: The pic?  I have the Iron Man ring on.  I’ve been told in the past I look like Gwyneth Paltrow – Of COURSE Iron Man is a nerds paradise – so my nick name is Peppers)

Proof:

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When I initially reached out, I was just SO excited that #1 he was alive. #2 that he accepted my friend request.

I didn’t expect more than that.  I was SO happy to have my friend back in my life.  And at the time, I was in the midst of Rainer time.  My friend?  He was taking a step in a new direction and hoping someone he had loved after I knew him, and had loved him back – might turn into a mutual ‘love’ again.

Timing – definitely off.

Long story short.

Clearly I had hopebreak and not heartbreak over Rainer.  And my friend honestly loves his best friend.

Which, I admire.  I couldn’t love someone who discounted a real relationship with someone else – that would mean they would do that to me.  Right?

But today – after a couple of weeks of bonding about a visit to me he wanted to take – I got the announcement.

Yeah – we’re ‘In a Relationship’ with each other.

He gets that I have no filter.

He gets that I’m feet first, up to my chin.

He gets that I love with my whole heart and will read into everything he says, and everything he doesn’t … AND STILL POSTED THAT!

I was sent home today, by my work family.  Because I am seriously pretty sick.  Seriously under the weather.  And I love them for that.

So I also got to see Nic.  He was grinning and pointing at my ipad.

He needed me to know he saw the ‘Life Event’ and approved.

That natural 20?  Yeah … it was between Nic and James (the post before)

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I was so happy.

We’re all such total nerds!!!!! Into Dungeons and Dragons and Comic Books and The Walking Dead and anything that isn’t mainstream (although, I think probably Walking Dead is mainstream by now no?)

I was happy anyway, let’s face it.  But having my son onboard? C’mon.

I managed quality time with Nic whilst being pathetic and trying to be very engaged on my bed. It worked.  We pulled off the quality time.

So I’m sick, in love, finally getting the fairy tale AND … about to take a nap and my mom shows up.

My mom.

The one who has my whole heart too shows up … WITH … Chocolate, Lemon Curd, Pickled Onions and THERAFLU!

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Bottom line.

Today, I got my Prince – validation that my work family loves me – ULTRA validation that my son loves me (we did a fun question/answer thing) and time with my mom who was checking in on me.

Today … is my favorite day.

And like I said to Nic – “See, sometimes life sucks, then it doesn’t” and that really IS life.

amandajim

And, hey, Micah (one of my BFFS) – I told you first what I hoped for here – and you were happy that I even hoped it.  See … dreams DO come true. x