Monday, September 28, 2009

Short Take On A Long Weekend

Part of my primary social group (my eldest son from Florida and his family) came to visit Friday evening and stayed till Sunday afternoon. I awoke before the others on Saturday morning, got dressed and was making breakfast when they started waking up, taking their baths, getting their first cup of coffee. 
My daughter, in her rush for work, put her breakfast in a bowl and took it with her. I watched as she rushed out the door and found myself, if only for a moment, envying her for having 'somewhere to be'.
It was hot and humid all day Saturday but despite the hot weather, my two-and-a-half year old granddaughter and I spent some time outside; playing ball, swinging together and petting the cat. In my attempt to be a fun Nana, I sat up a play-hut and got down on my hands and knees crawling through it, hoping she would join me but she just looks over at me like I've lost my mind then goes off chasing the cat.   
While I was out late Saturday afternoon getting pizza for our dinner, it came a sudden downpour that lasted only a few minutes, then, a beautiful rainbow appeared and for some reason, in just that instant, I felt truly happy.
After everyone went to bed, I lay on the sofa and fell asleep watching a movie.
Sunday's weather was slightly cooler and nicer. 


Friday, September 25, 2009

Broken String of Pearls

As the early morning sun burst through the closed window blinds, I groggily ease out of bed, my bare feet landing on the cool oak floor. Squinting from the intrusive sun, I sit a moment on the edge of the bed and run a hand through my honey-wheat hair, trying to smooth down the loose strands.

I feel tired.

Last night was like so many other nights since dad died in June, two days before Father's Day. Just another night of disconnected, haunting dreams that leave me feeling restless and uneasy. Like little snippets from a Stephen King novel bouncing in and out of my head. 

Silly girl. Cried yourself to sleep again. Not really sobbing, just soft teardrops falling on my pillow like a broken string of pearls. 

I slowly rise and scuffle to the bathroom, splash some cool water on my face, dab it dry with the nearest wash cloth (a blue one, how appropriate) and think to myself, will it ever end? will the dreams ever stop? will I ever sleep through an entire night again?

Oh, what I would give for one dreamless night. Just close my eyes and have nothing seep into my mind but restful, blissful blankness. Wake up to a new dawn, a new day. Smile at the sun and remember the good times with my dad and the wonderful fragment of a faultless man that he was.

Open up a new book, start a new chapter.


Monday, September 21, 2009

A Fine Frenzy

Life is filled with simple pleasures that I so often overlook while going through the business of living.

I wasn't born under an optimistic moon and the bright-side-of-life sun didn't come out that day either.

While thinking on the What Was and wondering What Will Be, I so often find myself missing the best moments of life until they have long passed, but yesterday, I found myself on one of those rare occasions of living in the moment.

After my 21 year old daughter came in from work, she sat down by me at the computer while I was catching up on some blog reading (very important stuff) and started telling me about her day, so...

I stop reading and start listening.

Some girl at work had gotten fired because no one liked her and my daughter thought that was a sorry reason to fire someone and OH YEA she just bought A Fine Frenzy's new CD and it's GREAT and I just GOTTA LISTEN TO IT! ( I love the way she talks without taking a breath). So, I close out the blogs and go to her room where we lie on the bed and listen to music (which was surprisingly good) and talk some more about her day and I think to myself, these are the moments I want to remember.

Later, she brings home some fast food for dinner (which is more than okay with me), curls up in MY chair, looks over at me and smiles knowingly.
MY CHAIR! it has my name on it and everything!! You would think the girl would know!

So anyway, I curl up on the sofa and we watch Pearl Harbor because she's never seen it. As we sit there, laughing together at certain parts of the movie and feeling sad in others, I think to myself, these are the moments I want to remember.

They say the best things in life are free and today, I have to agree. It didn't cost me a thing to stop and really listen to my daughter's day or take a few hours out to watch a movie with her even though I had already seen it... but the smile it gave me... was priceless.

*The above photo is of me and my daughter last November.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Home-Grown Happenings

This AM: I was sitting at the computer with my morning companion (a.k.a. cup of coffee), checking emails and such, when much to my surprise and bewilderment, two lovely spider lilies were handed to me right out of the blue.

Well, actually, right out of the yard but who cares...

I was taken aback by the moment. Almost speechless. Though, I did manage a smile and thank you.

Hubby says, "You're welcome." He doesn't smile, hug, kiss me or anything like that, he just says, "You're welcome", then, gathers his stuff and heads off to work.

I mean, don't get me wrong, we're polite to one another and all... but the sweet and thoughtful things (such as flower giving), I thought h
ad long since sunk to the bottom of some unknown ocean... along with that ship we keep expecting to come in, you know?

A beautiful moment! Not because of the flowers themselves (though lovely they were) but because of the unexpected sweet gesture from someone whom I thought (at least for me) there were no sweet feelings left.

They now sit in a glass vase on the kitchen table.

I've walked passed them several times today, and each time, I
pause and stare at the long-stemmed enigma sitting before me, wondering what to make of it.

Is it a beginning of sweet moments or just a spur-of-the-moment thing that won't happen again till the next millennium?

I prefer to think of it as a new beginning.

Of what, though? Love? Forgiveness? Acceptance? All the above?
Or, am I over-thinking it... as I so often do?

Well, whatever the reason. . . it made me smile.

To me, it was as if he had handed me. . .

a dozen roses

wrapped in

a chocolate ribbon

stuck in

a strawberry cheesecake.


Saturday, September 12, 2009

Like The Dead Leaves of Autumn

If I may speak just a bit on my most recent tragedy... and in so speaking... it might give my heart a short reprieve.

Mom and I talk on the phone nearly every day and have, since June. I spent a week with her in July (in Alabama). It was painful going back home and dad not being there.

I listen while she talks about things like the headstone she chose for dad's grave and wanting to be sure we are all okay with it, his notebook of songs she discovered while going through his things, his clothes that were packed to give away, etc... and all during our conversations it's "You know, when your dad was still alive."

I want to change the subject to something else, anything else... but I listen and try to give words of encouragement when needed although, to me, the words fall lifeless from my tongue like the dead leaves of autumn.

I know my dad is gone and he isn't coming back. I accept that... as long as I'm not reminded of it, as long as I don't look at his photos or hear in conversation that he is not with us anymore, as long as I don't recall any of the last six weeks of his life that I spent with him, getting to know him better than all the years before, as long as I don't recall the pain he was in or the look in his eyes on the few occasions when he thought he was leaving us, as long as I don't think about how lonely he seemed as he lay dying... as long as I don't give my mind any quiet time to think at all... and, as long as no one tries to tell me things like, "You know your dad wouldn't want you to feel sad." He is gone, I miss him and I feel sad.

I never knew he had such blue eyes or such big hands. I never knew he had such a tender heart or felt such emotion. He was just my dad. He was also a preacher for as long as I remember. That's where his heart was, in preaching. I respected and loved him and I always knew he loved me but I seldom felt especially close to him... not until those last six weeks.

Six weeks! What happened in all the years before, that kept me from really knowing him or sharing a close father/daughter relationship?

Even though those last six weeks seemed the most difficult of my life, I thank God for them. Every day, I thank God. At least I had that.

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

A heart. A bird. An artificial rose.

Because my heart is SO EMOTIONAL, I sometimes wish I could take it out and leave it somewhere that I am not. Just as some take vacations from their job or school, I want a vacation from my heart. I just don't want to feel anything for a while. Go about one day at least, just on my mind alone. Wonder how far my mind alone would take me?? Hmm.

Ah, if I were a bird. I wonder if birds
feel emotion. They seem to fly about so freely, without a care in the world. But I am sure, even birds have emotional days when they feel their attempts go unappreciated.

Maybe I could be an inanimate object for one day. Yes, maybe that.

Perhaps, like the artificial rose my eldest son gave me when he was only nine (he's 29 now). That rose, and the thought behind it, makes me smile each time I look at it. I remember the day he brought it to me, and that huge smile on his face. He ha
d asked earlier if he could have some money to get something from the convenience store down the street, so, I gave him a couple of dollars thinking he would buy himself a soda and snack. A few minutes later he comes in with his hands behind his back. "Whatcha got there?" I ask. He smiles timidly and says, "I got you something." I smile back and say, "Oh, yea?" He then pulls out this beautiful, single, red-velvet rose in a tiny crystal vase (3 inches, altogether) and proudly hands it to me.

I about cried. I hugged him to death, thanked him, then asked, "Well, what did you get yourself?" He said, "I didn't want anything, just wanted you to have this." Have you ever heard of anything sweeter?

So, where was I?... oh, yes... I think I would like to be that tiny velvet rose in that tiny crystal vase, even for just a day, and make someone smile huge smiles just by being me.

But truly, would I really want to be heartless, even for a day and possibly miss out on a moment like the above? I think not.

So, here I am, back to being me. SO EMOTIONAL. But sometimes, just sometimes, it ain't that bad.


Tuesday, September 1, 2009

The End and The Beginning

Well, August was quite the month and here we are at the beginning of September. Getting closer to Fall. Yay!

So, I thought I'd take this time to recollect not only on this past month but the past eight years that I mentioned in an earlier post. Let's see... how to compile eight years into a couple of paragraphs and try not to bore you.

First off, my marriage took an awful turn at the beginning years of the millennium and can't seem to get back on track. I won't go into details on that but will admit it was at least 75% my doing. Yet, somewhere in the middle of it all I discovered much about myself that I did not previously know. I am a stronger indiviual than I once thought. I've made it through tons of guilt, self-hate and self realization. Some of the latter was not fun to learn but some I embraced with tears and delight. I have become more open to others and to myself. I've made a few friends that have enriched my life considerably, whereas before, I pretty much closed myself off. I no longer have extensive bouts of depression and I find, more often than not, that I am glad to be alive.

Also, within the past eight years, My eldest son was honorably discharged from the USMC after serving full term, my youngest spent his 21st year in jail (a very difficult time for us all) but he learned some valuable lessons during that time, of which I am most grateful. My son in the middle became a minister. All three were married and had kids, and I became a grandmother (well, Nana - 4 times). One of my sisters and I became good friends, whereas before we were mostly just sisters. My brother-in-law, my aunt and my uncle passed away... and most dear to my heart (in June of this year) my dad.

I became a writer of poetry in 2005 and have since wrote a short story for children, started on a book (3 years in the making), and now... I'm a blogger. An addicted one too, I might add. Not just in the writing of but in the reading of others. There are some pretty neat and interesting people here. I think, at least for now, I have found myself a home.