Over Board

 

Since I like to write about life in “metaphors” and “allegory” I would like to directly confront any haters by describing my life as a big Carnival cruise ship.

When you spend 33 years steering your ship with the same beliefs, illusions, escape mechanisms, denial and self defeating behaviors, you know how to steer, because its the way you were taught. It’s the way you always have done, the way your parents and even their parents taught, a map passed down with just one compass, a set group of working members that trust you to steer the way they taught.

Rejecting their way of navigation is to reject them, to question that any idea outside the script they have written for you is rebellious and ungrateful. By asking to maneuver this ship, your own, the way you hope, the way you dream, causes narcissistic panic and rage, for such a request slaps ingratitude, defiance, and no amount of love by either party changes this fact at all.

It is their fear of all fears, to lose control.

But you cannot dance for them, steer for them, look at a map that has nothing to do with you and pretend you are doing a job GOd made you for, not even for the love you feel for them.

It is too great a cost.

Trying only comes with their reminders of your past navigations, life boats of passengers that would leave, that little failed  marriage, financial irresponsibility, their hearts heavy with concern, so naive and desperate for love and approval, you believe them.

The drama and unhealthy anxiety and loss of weight and who had to bear such a thing watching you destroy yourself?

Your heart sickened and you would agree especially when the trump card fell, like how your children were at stake, and as my mother said when I excitedly announced my acceptance to Photography school, “But honey, your children need you. A good mother knows  you can’t ever get back your children’s childhood.”

But I had waited till Lola was in Kindergarten, my heart felt it true that I had real gifts, people had told me about my writing and photography, something my mother claimed she wouldn’t read.

It was just too unbearable for her.

Not to mention being the family laughing joke, the dating disasters, financial dependence, and so you went along, so you laughed with them.

So crazy, how could YOU be qualified to run your own ship?”

They meant to shut up, find a good man, stop causing drama, and do not ask questions that make them feel, look, or examine pain, but one last thing. DO not take front seat or that would mean that they may be put out of a job, a job they invested 33 years in keeping. One thing I have learned is that nothing is more important than their own illusion of control, that you somehow are responsible for the emotions, existence, needs, and life path of another simply by being born.

In your birth, you are their ownership.

But, what if they were right?

They always were.

Could you possibly be that arrogant, even crazy, to believe that something inside you knows more?

Read their map, take passenger seat with their compass, and they promise, you will always be safe, loved, and in God’s loving hands.

In many small moments of defiant self assurance and your own part brave, part powerful, part narcissistic inner guidance, you throw the compass over the side, rip their perfect map and do horrible things like go to school, take on boyfriends not of their knowledge or choosing, at 33 mind you. You refuse calls, break cars, and cry over missing your babies.

They tell you that this is abuse, this defiance of role, the writing, and you failed them by not taking the destination they paid and invested financially and emotionally for you.

In your young naive attempt for all that you have fought for, you throw up the middle finger, rip their map, not just in half with a clean line you can tape back later for emergency, but in many teeny pieces throwing them up in the air.

You clearly have no idea what you have done.

They watch in horror, announce insanity, and so you hear the many heartbreaking lies from the ones who KNEW you, who were watching, who cried and held you, so you dive deep in denial as your reputation is smeared, like a knife you know is cutting and bleeding in your back, but you refuse to pull out.

Sometimes pretending the pain isn’t really there is less painful than the wound itself.

And sometimes, this exact point causes you to never fully examine your wounds, your life, your loved ones, I believe, is a promise that you will in fact, become them.

The repair is not possible you realize as your heart slices to pieces, your children are no longer called or seen, even the ex that supported them is deleted next to you off of facebook, birthdays and holidays are ignored, with the exception of a lovely card, only for the grandchildren, who have been left to you for the explanation of why an entire extended family, aunts uncles and cousins, are gone. I couldn’t bare it. My babies most claimed to being loved were now pawn to a woman who claims I will not let her see them.

And so, you have what you have asked for, a ship, gulp, and no one to control the many anchors and nets, food preparations, or storm safety regulations.

You have a few passengers to take leadership of, all watching with careful scrutiny as to how this captain will maneuver without any map, an illogical quest for certain, and you can feel some of them smug at their obvious belief you will hit the rock of Gibraltar, or drown the entire boat from your selfish, ignorant, irresponsible and reckless decisions.

They are waiting to be right.

The others left are a little scared, with life jackets all on, you notice, a fact that makes you wince, seeing as there is only bright sky and little waves, but they have swimmies, goggles, inner tubes and helicopters on call.

So you will prove them all wrong. You will prove you are the Captain, the first to use an inner guidance and new technology from within. You are living your destiny, you say in the mirror at night, certain the gods will protect you and the ripple effect of your intentions will lead you and your girls to freedom.

You believe with all your might you are called to do so.

And in front of them all, in front of yourself, you run your ship directly into a glacier.

And another one.

You see with terror that the water has began to fill the first cabin of passengers and it is your fault, these passengers you have grown to love as your own family are all affected, their money and resources drained, their thoughts of your motives and choices are murmured below, but you can hear them all.

They are losing trust, amongst the chatter, you feel their worry and anxiety over you, causing great pain and a responsibility greater than you ever knew before.

That is the worst part of being a captain.
Letting down the ones you want nothing more than to love and protect that have no choice but to drown or get hit amongst the rocks with you.

I was in the McDonald’s drive thru, with Lola my cheerleader, Kat my critic, and I saw her eye me in my rear view.

She must have noticed I buy nothing for myself, even food, something she comments on, aware at too young of an age that mommy has had an excruciating break up, must move out without any idea where to live, needs extra work and fast, and is heartbroken mostly over missing them and wondering if in fact, everyone was right, once again.

“Mom,” she said, with authority in her voice, even at 10.

I was scared to look up.

“One day mom, you will have a big house and a man that is your real soul mate, you’ll see. You will go on trips and buy things and mom, you can do it. One day mom.”

“Yeah!” Lola cheered from the back, shouting, “YOU WONT ALWAYS HAVE NO MONEYS!”

She kept eating her fries while I said nothing, afraid to show the tears sliding, the belief they have in me had nothing to do with my past behavior, all to do with what they knew I was capable of.

“And a child shall lead them.”

I had already took on a first captain, one with a snarky spitfire of personality and courage, to test the waves, an open book of brilliance and psychological passion which she has mysteriously gained at such a young age.

Ya’ll know her as Thelma.

I hired her to research and build a new map you see, my courage and passion to my cause quickly passing, so I asked her to find a much better working compass, a growing regret was quickly coming with the realization I threw away with the first one with little indifference at the time.

She has bad news.
She cannot give me a new compass.
She WILL not give you a new compass.
She says it like the truth blazer she is, something I often brag will make her the greatest forensic psychologist of all time, but with me, you see, I demand she change the very core of what makes her beautiful and unique.

I explain carefully that I just want her to say it is okay.

She explains details over my ship with little patience and logical direct blows. She tells me I am the leader of this ship, not her, and not the ones before, and I have a choice. I will lead the ship I call my life, for good or bad, or not.

My knees go weak, not knowing I had unconsciously looked for the exact replacement of what I knew for all my life. I just saw pain, blinding white light, and an evil girl who cut up souls and served them on strawberries.

It took a lot of time to see the real Thelma, not the woman I only projected upon as “mother.”

On many occasions I imagine I might have challenged her to first deck where I would wrestle her lady like uppity ass to the ground, but in fact, something worse happened.

I realized she was right.

What the fuck was I thinking?

I did what all confident self seeking freedom fighters do and cried, begged, demanded she do it, fell faint on the floor from the magnitude of it.

She just rolled her eyes.

Until the breaking.

Something had to be changing for she was evolving into the nurturing and kind friend, the co caption I was used to was not empathetic, even harsh.

It was the first time I saw her as she was, and had always been, but from my own dysfunction and terror of being abandoned had blinded me to ever seeing the real her.

I saw after a year that she had no life jacket on or life boat pulled to the side, nor had she ever.

How could I have missed this?

So this was the breaking, the pounding of my knees to the ground, the layers of unworthy unloved messages and beliefs began to take over, and I had nothing left to fear.

In that moment, I had and was nothing,

The interesting thing about pain is that some pain keeps you stumped for years, and I had the tears of a clown with the make up dripping off, only my true sad self to let through and all of it, all of it, had been not my fault, but my responsibility.

I wasn’t stumped at all. I was aware I had done nothing I had set out to accomplish, that intentions mattered nothing, that I was in fact, the scum on the bottom of the scummiest bottom.

So the reality I had been missing was that she had not changed into anything, for I saw her, my biggest defender, fighter, support and friend. It was I who was the one changing, the parts of me who kept her and the world away were the ego and I had none left, not anymore.

Then I heard some music, coming from bottom deck, Justin Timberlake I believe, blasting on the radio, my girls coming up to shake what their mama gave them, the ship half burned, ship wrecked, void of food.

True deliverance comes not when we are accepting mighty awards in front of all the people who didn’t believe in you, our shadows and ego convinced OUR truth will be rewarded, maybe even a podium or Ted Talk might come our way.

It just is never going to be that way for me.

It is in the destruction, when the tides have turned and all is lost at sea. It is in the shipwreck and pirates who betray again and again, so you find treasure in your laughter, in your glories, in your unforgivable mistakes, and if you have a lucky break, all you can see and feel is just peace.

These are the finest of any treasure a captain can find, when her ship becomes eerily still while the  dolphins came to say hello, jumping in perfect circles. One by one they come, dressed in costume, Kat and then Lola, Thelma and Dad, all the ones who love from a broken heart come to dance.

“You are the captain of your ship, the captain of your soul” is a quote I scribbled down way before I took on this journey, and I will not begin being grateful when I find the destination, the flag, the written map the gods reveal before me.

Sink or swim, with maybe one float left to hold on as I watch my boat burst into flames, it doesn’t matter.
I will dance just the same.

For everyone on board, from past to present to unknown to future known, this is the song I am dancing to, hoping you all are blessed, touched, and loved. It is you who have been God’s touch on my shoulder.

Enjoy!

Michael Franti & Spearhead LIVE

 

Three Amigos

There is nothing like deleting old emails all morning only to break out into the ugly cry, Lola and Kat at first concerned,

Mom, is it Sammy?

He died two years ago, my 14 year old dog.

 

Mom, you can put these blankets around your shoulders to make it all fancy,” Lola consoles, of course, by fashion wear. She once told me she was in my tummy and the whole time she was thinking, “When, oh when, are they going to let me change my clothes!”

Kat studies me when I cry, analytically, like she has never seen my face before, or if she were logically counting tear drops for a homework assignment.

The only thing worse than having a broken heart is your kids knowing it.

Then, they put on my “favorite” song, despite the fact I hate Katy Perry, go figure, and did a dance show until I laughed so hard the snot didn’t even bother me, the pain burning in my heart was numbed like someone slapped vapor rub on it.

Before you know it, the moment passed, they were fighting over the wi remote, my puffy eyes are all thats left, and I say loudly, “Act like a real writer!

I was going to write about something serious today, and actually you know, edit, or read it, for the love of God.

I was, I REALLY was, but I found this in my email account, no date, before I had a blog I suppose.

“Wow. So, we were running a “CRYSTAL GIRL” errand, which Kat, Lola, sometimes Nana and I, are the Crystal Girls, an exclusive group, and Kat and I start scheming. So, I say, “Kat, you know where B lives?”

“Whittaly.” No, I say, “FLORIDA,” with a smile. Lola first says, “When I see that nice man B, I am gonna kiss and love him and hug him” she said, eyes so big!

Kat said, “Yeah, and HE is a NICE man, and DADDY likes him, and on the chatter went…
Then it hit.
Lola crumples her face and says, “And B will NEVER ever Eat Bad Stuff and TURN his HEART BLACK and leave us or die, Mommy! NEVER, EVER!”
Knocked the wind out of me…… 

I pulled into the QT and parked the car, and looked at her.

“Lola, love, tell me where it hurts.” She shook her head, “NO!”
Kat put her hand on Lola, who put her head into the leather, and I said, “Lola, my heart hurts because of Papa, does yours?”
She gave me one eye from her pudgy baby hands, peeking in, through the tears. “And I don’t know if Daddy or Nana or my boyfriend B will die or leave, but…”
I was about to launch into one of my Mommy speaches, and I am one of those moms that has to annoy even a seven year old to death to make sure its all said,
so Kat interrupted, “Lola, she said.. You’ll always have me.”
And they hugged and I wept.

This morning ended up a lot like that, no babies, now big girl dance queens, in my heels and sunglasses, on a fake stage, but even the same, it hit today. And no mommy was there to give a fake speech, but who needs fake speeches, and living dogs, old boyfriends, dads, holidays, phone calls or birthday parties? Not me. It is far overrated when you have Katy Perry twins, singing badly and loudly, my words from the email blurred into one as I cried all over again, reading the last line.

And they hugged and I wept.

The Second Funeral

I have several topics rick racking my brain today. I want to post about my first angry comment to a blog, and what it provoked, what changed as the result. I want to post about Lola and I moving in to bunk beds, no “roomie” is more comical, every day I have a better story.

 

Then, my job, my therapist, the first assignment of having to put my picture in a frame, to “say nice things” to the little girl within.

I have been assigned to bring her treats, people.

I want to draw a mustache, give her a bottle of jager, tell her to sleep it off, but even that I have been procrastinating. Thelma and I can’t let the jokes go long enough to be serious.

But, what lies in the pit of my stomach, aching to be expressed, scratching my inner thoughts like a claw to a kitty pole, is my sister by soul, Heather Murphy.

She asked I use her real name.

You see, this woman, a friend of mine by a year or so, although sorrow tells time in a different way, if you ask me. Time is measured by the stories we share, the pieces we let strangers see, the depth of us that loved ones may go to the grave never shown. They can know all our traits, but pass right by us, strangers to the stories we hold locked..

It is a key we share, and so time becomes marked by who is given a key, and who is hidden as we hide the key away, under the mat of our hearts.

Heather’s child, Olivia Garcia, at one years old, was murdered by her best friend, involuntary manslaughter, the details horrifying, and to make it even more ghastly, extremely public.

Her once dear friend, Oliva’s Godmother, Amanda Brumfield, is the estranged daughter of Billy Bob Thornton, so my stomach sickens as I watch my cursor spell his name, blink and wave, my thoughts on this blog run rapidly through emotions, on a time belt I can’t control the speed.

Olivia, who died the day before her first birthday, I revisited a year ago in a blog, “Olivia Maddy Marie, a “Tribute” for Heather Murphy“, being careful to not disclose any information that might affect her trial.

Now the trial is over, Heather’s reality is a hell not only she had to revisit on stand, not allowed to cry, having to see this woman who hurt her baby, witness photos no mother can imagine, swallow guilt that no person should have to endure, not by media, not for this.

I have a new outlook on life because of her, on what we read, on money and fame, magazines, news feed and journalists. It makes me sick.

Divorcee casually discussed the trial while reading People Magazine on-line, my knees giving out, blood rushing to my head, forcing me to sit down. I had not yet known the verdict.

“Wow. Thirteen to Thirty years for Involuntary Manslaughter,” he gasped.

I blurred the news with my hands, hoping to filter anything I could not handle in the moment, when one teeny thing caught my eye.

A fucking Facebook “Like” button, that’s what.

What have we come to? I could piss fire on this moment alone, much less the public misinformation, the reality of her nightmare, her agony that Baby Liv is googled, and all her name shows are Billy Bob Thornton photos and media accounts of this woman, this daughter of a celebrity, estranged.

Heather Murphy, a victim, is a person, real to me, your sister, friend, boss. To see her agonized if she should do “Inside Edition” for they will ask her God knows what, for news, while she worries she will be seen as a mother wanting her moment in the public eye. Then, she feels sadness and anger, Baby Liv is not even seen as a little girl, her girl, a sissy lost forever, and the sentence Heather received will never end, not ever. She wants her baby to be seen, her voice heard, to matter.

And so, she is asking me to help her with the day she does speak, to the jury, to the world, and so, “Will I take photos of her baby things, her little keepsakes only a mommy can cry upon knowing the importance, the ashes, the memory book?”

I cry at just the thought of what it must feel to be her, and fear it just as much, then my own wretched hope that she be heard is an aching tunnel, a hollow echo, a dark hall I know she walks every day, but will people turn, look, turn on the light?

I don’t know.

Maybe not, but I will light a torch, for Olivia Garcia, will use my keystrokes, my camera, my voice, my outrage. I will burn the hall behind me, no father or a platform, nothing of importance to offer the public, no dirt to offer the media to eat, a dry dust in my mouth is the Ribeye steak they drool for, and yet, always hungry, never satisfied.

No one wants to be famous for this, and Olivia is gone, a discussion for people over breakfast, her pain raw as an unbeaten egg in your blender, the details of her dead child a passing discussion, while passing the butter.

I do know what I don’t have, but there is one thing I got.

I have love.

In the end, it is all life is worth.

For Heather, I will always answer “yes,” her wedding to a man I saw her meet, I am so thankful to photograph, even if it is heartbreaking to watch her plan, the details Bridezillas go nuts over, she hasn’t the energy to even care.

While I was thinking of this, this song came on, chilling me, her words etched in my heart over the phone, “You know,” she said.

“It will be the sentencing, but really, it will be my arrival to her second funeral.”

If you will, repost, stumble, and most of all, pray.

I strongly believe prayer is the bullet on which our voice rides, and this woman needs ammo, the only kind love is made from.

Annihilation

If words were a weapon, I just got dropped the nuclear bomb, the big daddy, the one our government would never let us know about, certain it is for our own safety.
A childhood friend and I are trying to reconcile our distant relationship, for the sake of our kids. She has always been everything I am not, or ever been. She runs her home like a well oiled machine, never forgets appointments, runs late, cancels plans, or forgets to send out a warm Thank You note.
She is Anne Taylor but without a clearance rack, something I marvel at with amazement, my dollars land on the Goodwill counter, the thrill of my life is finding the girls a steal with tags.
She is the woman who had so many clothes for her child they all lined the closet as big as my room, hanging, the tags I touched in amazement, her baby could never wear them all, even if she changed him ten times a day.
She is neat, orderly, and cooks according to her little weight watchers booklet, the teeny book she holds as she counts points, remembering with perfect accuracy what she has to do to maintain her perfect health, my mind blank in trying to recount breakfast, if I had it, a book that tiny would have been lost in seconds in my possession.
Ever since I have known her, I have wanted to be her.

She is the example of what a good wife, hard worker, and ideal mother represent.

Her child was in school at two, has had swim lessons and been passed around more adoring hands than I have known to exist in one country, much less one room, and he is so lovable and adored, especially by Kat and Lola, but most by me.

The things that she said to me were all true, Divorcee and I on conference call, both wanting to fight for the relationships we believe matter, for nothing is more thrilling than knowing your kids have people in life who love them.

She said I was a bad mother, and it is true. They have never deserved to witness divorce, have never been given the things they deserve. I never know if I am doing things the right way, feel guilt over all they have missed in my own search for wholeness.
I sob thinking of how I promised Disneyworld, a trip I starve hoping to save for, a fact I am 90 pounds, which is not true, but I am too prideful to admit my weight loss is from overworking my body, her child has seen the ocean more than I have seen bank account draft fees, which is a lot.

She said that I am selfish, leave the children so that Divorcee can’t leave if he wanted to, something he assures me is not the case but I did have a boyfriend that smoked pot, have been up for days and manic, and no one more than me wishes I knew how to manage life without becoming depressed or afraid, my regrets are bigger than my self help book shelf, all wrapped in every truth she gave, pointed out in exasperation.

She has never in her life woke up and wondered if she had been loved, her Daddy is at more functions of my own family than my sorry excuse for DNA, her parents are in 30 ish years of marriage, regular attendees of weddings, bearing gifts and kindness wherever they land.
I hear of her shopping trips with them and cringe, wondering if I can ever make it up to my own babies, who literally have no one but the tight circle in which we hold on to, for dear life.
She met the man she is married to in college and I doubt she has even loved anyone else. I doubt she goes to bed alone ever, her times away from him shake her, and I only dream of having a relationship, divorce and abandonment have never shaped her thoughts, a life I could only dream.
She has never had the threads of life ripped from beneath her, and how I am glad, to date with such fear and tread such waters of loss and destruction make me sure she is right. I can not know what she has always had without question.
She said she knows plenty of single mothers who do it better.
She says she does not use anxiety as an excuse for poor choices.

I have darkness lurking wherever I turn, and no one I can fully trust, am imbalanced, forgetful, late, selfish, and at the best imperfect.
What I am not is my father, a claim she said several times, in addressing my sick impulsive behaviors, a point I did get props for is in pursuing counseling, no doubt I need.
My father did not work at Chilis and slave all night to buy her Coach bags at Christmas, Divorcee shaking his head, my heart only desiring to see her light up, her face a sunbeam when she is given a gift she loves, my purest joy.
I see now that in doing this, what I have asked for is love.

“Please love me,” I scream.
“Please accept me,” I fall on my face in my offerings, a place I want in my deepest cracks to believe she does, but maybe if not, a Coach bag is what she really wanted, with her favorite color lined.

I was too ashamed to tell her I could not afford 30 dollar shoes for her child when given Christmas gifts, so I worked harder, and maybe, just maybe, one day she will see the symbols of love, to forgive all the mistakes, and I was certain my latest success, a job that would lead to real independence would impress her.
I hoped, like a child wishing to be adopted does, waiting for the right family to love and see them.
I see now adoption papers come to those who are doing it better, and I wonder if she knows I don’t want to be this, that I know I am broken, she doesn’t have to point it out to me. Just in being her, I am aware of all that I am.

I don’t understand why her husband can leave for days to do work in the world, important work, and he is a hero. Divorcee is the stable nurturer at home, a man who loves his children and keeps them in perfect regulation, cooks and cleans, but to be me, it is not acceptable because I am their mother.

That is considered selfish, unloving and unnatural, when I am just the same as her husband, the flip side of the same coin, but to be a woman, it is selfish and wrong. He throws his child in the air and is admired.

I throw mine and Divorcee is felt sorry for, praised and marveled at, his work in doing the laundry and setting up play dates makes him appear selfless.
But the truth is, we are in the roles we belong, just without the fish bowl, eyes looking in and judging, the two of us want what everyone else wants.

She regularly attends church, and I do not, but I must say, if anyone knows they are lost, guilty, or broken, it is me.
I AM the woman who threw herself at Jesus’s feet, asking to be healed.
I AM the woman who would adorn him with my most expensive cologne, in hope to be healed.
I wish this so deeply my heart might just break in half, and to be the seeker I am, I ask God to show up, to tell me, to reveal himself and I will go. I just haven’t found him, or at least she does not see that I have. I realize today, in my sorrow and tears, my shame is the very thing she does not carry, but real love is not conditional, is given times 70, is not earned, is not deserved. Loving people is what I do, no matter how they behave, and I only live by falling on my face and asking for grace.
I wept like a child in my bed last night and prayed that angels be posted to the doors of my mind. A little girl woke up, a little redhead named Lola, her fingers ran down my back scratching, her little intuition must have seen and felt me grieving, her love so big, the ocean can not contain it.

I want to love like the ocean too, like the man named Jesus claimed, but mostly, I want to be loved not because I did anything to deserve it. I want to be loved simply because I am.
I will go to the ends of the world to give my children the things they deserve but the only gift I know to be priceless is to love with compassion and mercy, that every mistake they make is already forgiven, that love and worth are not ever proven or earned.

It is free.

Now if only I can find it for myself….
Everything that matters in life is.

“Shame Erasers” Part 2

All I see today is the cursor in front of me, staring, blinking.

I have to move through this, terrified to write bullshit, and so now an hour later I return, coffee in hand, a new thought of how I will trick my mind into leaving, the only sign I am writing from my heart, the blood pounding as I feel keystrokes, not letters or words, but keystrokes. It is the only way I know I am writing. Here goes.

Girl met boy.

Boy fell hard and girl did not know.

Boy loves Girl.

Girl Freaks Out.

When I say freak out, what I mean by that is I lost my ever loving mind. I let this man take me out, for school work only and drop me off at the house, telling him he was now “friend’s zone.”
The next visit, I led him in the house to leave him on the couch with Divorcee, while I hummed my evilness from room to room, letting him sweat.
I came up with a list of deal breakers people, and if you know me, this part is strange.
I do not write lists.

All the man said to it was, “But I want you.”

I was disgusted he kept coming back, sweetly and patiently with lots of optimism,
which ensured the man did not have self esteem.

I called Clyde and said he had no goals and did not pay taxes.

I told my mother he smoked pot.

I became something I have never been.
I became out of control.

I brought him to Kat, smug, while she asked many questions, giving him her “evil eye” which she told him meant she were “suspicious.” I was certain she would catch him.
I coached Divorcee on how to warn him about me, who not only didn’t listen, but interrupted me to turn up the television, looking at me strangely from time to time. This dude, ‘The Collector,” I called him made me so mad I could feel my blood temperature rising.

His responses were always slow and patient, kind and gentle, and like this.

“Okay, but I am not waiting. I know you are just right for me.”

He said annoying shit like that all the time, and I knew he was a liar when he said he loved my mouth, a lie I caught on the spot. No one likes my big fat mouth, much less the exact color of my hat the day he first laid eyes on me, my height, the way he “knew” I stole his heart, wandering aimlessly and talking from person to person, unaware I even had him completely frozen, his heart pounding, begging me to not say goodbye.

I reminded him I had an orange peel stuck on my white frizzy hat, had not slept nor did I even remember him.

He replied that he loves me in glasses.

“Gag me,” “Good Luck,” and “You’re fucked,” are the responses I made, with great emotion, slamming down my phone after reading such ridiculous texts.

Until this one night, this one cold unique night, he had enough.
He left.

I had been most terrible and he finally left, finally. I sighed with relief, certain the worst had been over, my strict mean rude nature helped save a great guy from me, so I felt the burden lift, my heart pounding in adrenaline when I heard him walk out the back door.

I slept like a baby.

I woke the next day certain to be in relief everything I had created to lose him had occurred. I could finally relax.
I noticed he didn’t text me.
I noticed my neck and shoulders stiffen at the thought of his bear hugs gone.
The living room was quite different, the WI was not loud or annoying.
I had told him not to let Lola beat him in games.
Perhaps it was kind of sweet he couldn’t stand to let her win.

It makes her very upset, especially in sword fighting.

I picked up my camera, thinking it would surely erase this ridiculous irritation, and I remembered just this one thing to ask him, picked up my phone, and my heart dropped.

He had not even returned my last text.

I never felt stupid asking him anything. He always made me feel completely brilliant, even while looking for post it notes to help me remember my shutter speeds.
He was excited to find my keys in the horrible missing places, like the yard, and he didn’t judge.

He liked being the one who found them, he’d say. I hadn’t let that fool me.
I had been certain to see all the warning signs.
It hadn’t even gotten to breakfast for my heart to ache and ache, my stomach sicken, my mind to race in madness.

But he said all the wrong things.
So why was I crying?

When I discussed this with Thelma, my twin and counter part friend in corruption and evil, she said, after also hearing for months how awful this man was for me,
“You know, sometimes we just need the very thing we don’t know we want.”
She was right but I had lost him.
Even worse, maybe I hurt him.

I decided I must tell him I am sorry, and maybe even beg, or ask nicely, to be forgiven. On the way to his home, I pulled in the parking lot, aware something was off.
I had saved his home address wrong on purpose, just in case I ever tried to see him.
This moment, my friends, came the moment of salvation.
My salvation came in form of the ugly cry, a deep kneading grief that pounded, pain and hurt so deep it felt like my lungs were closing and my chest was being pressed open.
I finally saw that I believed everything I touched seemed ruined afterward, that nothing good came from people loving me.

I am a big mess, a terrible problem to solve, a wife that couldn’t make her husband love her, a little girl certain her daddy would eventually leave her.

It was all lies.

And so, I went to find him. I had a long list of things, important things, apologies, and when he opened his door and saw me, I opened my mouth and he physically shut it closed with his hands.
“NO. Do not say a word.”
He sounded a little intense, for the Collector, usually calm, grounding my insanity. I was waiting for the hatchet I deserved, my chin trembling, hoping he could get it out and at least let me explain.
“Let me just say something to you. I have to say it right now, first, before I know what you have to say.” I waited, unsure if I had just lost something I could never get back.
“I love you,” he said.

Love exists whether I believe in it or not, love is free whether I want to withhold it or not, love is beautiful even when I am afraid or in pain.

Love doesn’t leave with my Dad, The Collector, with Divorcee.
I know I am capable of loving deeply, fiercely, wildly, but I hadn’t been afraid to love.
What I had hidden was that I was terrified of being loved back.

And he does.
Salvation is the moment I realized I was worthy of letting him.

Shame Erasers Part One

The ugly truth about writing is that it is not something you choose.

It chooses you.

I have been avoiding this blog like crazy.

Writing is the only way I know how not to lie.

One of my favorite writers said we have no choice to write or not, that inspiration is bullshit. She said you show up, every day, like all other writers, because it is your job, and that is what you do. Fine. But I don’t have to like it.

……………………………………………………..
Shame Erasers Part One….

I wish I could write this in outline, or power point, to make it less blinding.
I need lists to make even grocery stores less frightening.

Its like I have been living with the sound of a dentist drill in my mind,
an irritating awful pierce demanding I sit down and write.
I just want to get under my covers and hide.

A man I have been dating wants to be my boyfriend.

Good God. That statement even looks as dumb as I imagined.

I don’t need to tell anyone I am a free spirit, a boastful pride in the fight I put out for that freedom. I love being and going, free to kiss, flirt, drink, touch, dance, and to be single is bliss. Utopia is Granny panties or lace thongs worn just for me, ice cream out of the box,
a delightful bed with no sweaty needy hairy man waiting on me to get there,
asking where I went, why my cell phone wasn’t charged, or if I knew how dangerous dancing, live music, oh, and the other hairy sweaty sex crazed filthy mind controlling men I hang around are.

These are the men in past I have referred to as boyfriends or husband, and believe me, it never ends well.

It begins with a promise they make after four beers while I am in red heels,
a short black dress revealing cleavage and legs, leaning in with my glass of red wine.
This is not my first rodeo people.
I laugh at the thought of life and cramps on the bathroom floor,
Lola being put in time out for talking about hairy pee pees, Kat irritated Lola stole her label maker.
And so, my response is usually, “Good Luck,” said with ease and flirtation, ending with me in my bed,
my girls safe and snug a room away. Bliss.

And so, today, for my mini series, you understand the pitch I gave, the same one a million times over it feels, but now there is one man who refuses to sign.

He will not budge. The immovable mountain I can not climb, cross, surround, depart from. He has the most annoying response ever to all these questions I spit, like nails, all the time, every hour.

“I want you.”

Seriously? That is not the correct answer.
That is actually kind of stupid.

And he smiles patiently, a man I named THE COLLECTOR, his house full of little groups of old cameras, beautiful treasures in all types of forms, put together like a kid building legos, but with art.
I can’t decide if I am experiencing love, horrific fear, warning signs from God, or intimacy.
He is like a nightmare wrapped up in a teddy bear, the very thing that looks so soft, I am suspicious of how it is stuffed.

Is this what people call love? THIS is the feeling women crave?
I feel like I ate too much beef jerky and got on a six flags ride I can’t get off.
Is this vibe what we are going for on romantic comedy movies,
which are all hired actors by the way, who are divorced three times over,
a side fact for the romantics to chew on.

I must lose him or commit to him, which I think has brought up every issue I have.
He kind of just required it.

How dare he? How dare a hairy sweaty man be so good, so kind, so sweet?
I don’t know how to control this ridiculous man, and I am mad with love and hate over this lack of control, especially in bed, as if every secret I have invites him inside with little thought to what this could become.
There should be prisons for people like him, torture chambers.

I don’t know what is bigger.
To lose something so big it will destroy me and all that I have worked to become.
Or to live in this, this fear, so ridiculous and mind altering, I just can’t do it. I have to get rid of him and fast.
Clyde says that is extreme.
Clyde says the things everyone says, and asks this question, which makes me laugh, for reasons I am so happy he doesn’t understand.

“WHAT IS THE WORST THAT CAN HAPPEN?”

I know this question.
It is designed to see that a simple truth holds the key in hoping that there is nothing to fear but fear itself.
I wonder if Clyde as a grown man had been told by his father point blank,
a man he had known and loved his whole life that he was an investment,
a bad one that never paid off. Then stand in the ruins of a life built on lies while the masses poke and smile,
asking for news on the latest man, a humiliation that rubs like a skin burn, a deep pulsing heartache no
words can describe.

I need a shame eraser. I just don’t know where to find a parking lot of them, my shame for watching
this man in his stubborn insistence stay reminds me daily I was not free at all.
I was as sick and chained and controlled in my mind from fear now as I was with the sweaty hairy men.
This is a nail biting mind altering truth to me, MISS OBVIOUS, soaking in single loving bliss.
It is humiliating, scary, and makes me wonder if I might be seriously damaged, like beyond what I could even
exaggerate, so much that I could hurt him, a thought I can’t live with.
What if I were like my Dad?
What if my Dad left for reasons the Collector will find?
What if I trust someone who becomes a mad man, like my Dad, and the girls will have it done to them.
No, no, this is wrong, wrong, wrong. I know who did the crime.
I just can’t justify at the right time if it is him, or me, or both who believes the crime has to be paid.

And so here I am, with a freight train headed, in the complete dark, his mere existence mentioned and teased by well meaning friends makes me want to fall over the edge, my balance knocked, my leg shaking.
The girl with the mouth from the South is in trouble when she can’t talk, not to anyone, not about this.
I have found my personal truth lies within me but in this, in this, I have become the unknown.

Part of me hears Clyde say “Breathe,” and “Go Slow,” but I don’t feel that. I feel betrayal coming like a smoke monster hurling at my door, shadows cast from giant magnifying glasses, my fears coming from the ground whisper I am drowning and the life boat I need, well, he is running out of time.

The saddest part is I don’t know if I’ll drown before I can tell him I want him back.

Breaking up is OKAY

Dear Rob Dyrdek,
How do I put this? I am not really good with feelings.
I’m breaking up with you.
I did enjoy your skate tricks, your dog, Big Black, your silly childlike brilliance.
You inspired me to the point of asking you to email me, our private relationship became my personal cell phone message, which I can’t figure out how to change back.
The same five people who call often get pissed about that one, Rob.
Maybe I should blame it on the Gingers mostly, Baby Bro, and my girl, Kat.
Baby Bro is a freedom lover, a Ron Paul supporter, and a great lover of documentaries.
He picks the best ones and when a clear day comes and he has a certain smirk on his face, I consider myself lucky, sit back, ready to really think and talk.

Not really a political girl, am certainly not Libertarian, Democrat, or Republican.
I like to imagine you like me, and the political bullshit ends when you fart on Big Black.
Truth.

There is nothing to fear, nothing to defend, nothing to hide.

That is why I love people who can really know how to spit truth. I certainly can not.
It is so easily seen but so cleverly disguised.
And for all you who preach nothing, I hunger you, so I watch and observe how you ooze with such awesomeness, you of course, have nothing to say.

I wish to be like you.

It took my friend Harpua, a Ginger, which is a mean name for a red head, but not from me, seeing as I have one of my own.

He believes red heads have been persecuted for years and deserve special attention.
Total bullshit. Lola stops traffic when she swings her red hair.
Gingers can’t really be trusted. It’s part of their charm.
So my Ginger friend Harpua and I agree that the most important question to answer a child with is a question, so that they think for themselves. Smart people tell you what smart people tell them so the questions leading back are all just answered from similar shades of the same “smartness.” But perhaps all the kids and the Gingers, or those in disguise, are the few who don’t even tell you what the smart people say.

Perhaps they just ask you the question right back.

Kat shot through a doctor today with this one simple question,

“Why sir, do you want my mommy to take medicine her body says isn’t okay?”

The man was holding up samples of LEXAPRO, promising me the only side effects were money, which he could take care of, seeing as he had so many samples.
No side effects? I asked again.

He laughed, the way smart old men with papers that tell them they are smart laugh when questioned by silly blonde girls, blonde girls who actually believe they know their own bodies.

Kat is a Ginger, disguised with brown hair, and intuitive.
That is my Kat. Asking questions with questions.
I wondered who I would become if I did the same.

And so, through Harpua, I have found someone you, Dear Rob, you can not even hold a candle to.

He looks for terrorists, to help police officers he assumes are impersonators of the police, mostly to offer hugs, and make announcements into megaphones, important messages like if you see a human body in another religion, to please physically attack them to change their minds.. I have 7000 people this silly blog reports read daily, and so, if one person knows how I can find this man, I don’t know what I would do with myself.

I might find a big black man to fart on too, Rob.

Stay tuned for Harpua and I to hit Atlanta, come join us with your questions as well, or for a lot of fun. I have a feeling Lola could draw a crowd, except Divorcee may not approve it for a school sick day. It would make a awesome school bus trip, a photo documentary, and if I don’t get kicked out of PTA for it, I’ll be pissed. Thank you Gingers, or if you are one in disguise or have wronged one in your day, stumble this on.
Do it.
Stumble and Google “The Love Police.”

As far as Rob, I am pretty sure he would agree, “Everything is Okay.”