Saturday, January 31, 2015

In the Quiet or Ten Things of Thankful #85

Ten Things of Thankful

Those moments when there are too many words yet not enough?
This is me… practicing gratitudes.
1. Clean food: I am so grateful to have a fall back system in place when my food choices get on the junk food side. Shame set in its’ proper place, and gently eating what is healthy is the best reboot. The first 16 days went very well. My Fibro was calming down. I added a yoga class to the workout regime.
2. A curve ball. My Grandmother died on the 16th. I will be writing more about it this week. Of course it set all the bells and whistles blaring. In having good boundaries in place I was able to navigate the next week eating what I could. It wasn’t clean but it was consistent. I didn’t project feelings as they came I owned them. When PTSD raised its’ head I had the words to comfort it and ride out the storm.
3. A funeral: It was the end of an era.

4. Fog: Here in the Central Valley, we don’t get snow or freezing temperatures. On occasion we will have rain, but mostly we have fog. An inversion of clouds fills up the center of California and it sits there. This blanket of gray flows to the ground at night, then recedes into the sky during the day. Like a theater curtain. Usually it makes me feel like I am suffocating, but at this moment I am just letting it blur the edges. The outside matches the inside.

5 The boys are back in school: They are attending classes AT their respective schools. Both come home happy and with stories of the outside world. It is nice to see some traction happening.
6. A play: Walking away from dance was hard for Ase. Starting over always is. For the last many months he was convinced to never step on a stage again. He thought it would be too painful. Then came along Me And My Gal from a local theater company. Out came the tap and jazz shoes. It is the perfect healing place for him. He said, “I can see myself doing things like this once in a while.”
7. An Anniversary: Mutant and I married 25 years ago this week. I wrote about ithere. You know the clichés: it’s hard work… it wasn’t easy… but I am glad that somehow we’ve made it this far.
 AND I got some pretty flowers in a silver vase. Iris is the flower for 25 years Mutant says.

8. A Craft Day: This time we made terrariums. I’ve wanted to do it for a while and since it is my last year I threw caution to the wind. The kids loved them and our discussion about the water cycle was fascinating.
Photo credit goes to Girly. 
9. In-N-Out: I’ll let Anthony Bourdain explain. I order mine Animal Style, Protein Style. 

10. Little things: Libraries, movies with great sound tracks, sunshine, and a new bright shiny week.

Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Twenty-Five Years Later

A girl stood on the stage of a church. In front stood the statuesque pipes of a mighty organ, a type of second mother. The girl spent much of her childhood sitting on the floor-playing, reading or coloring- listening to the great and gentle notes woven together. It was a safe place filled with wonder, history and magic.
Behind this girl sat people:
Family in the midst of transition.  Relatives only known in stories sat patiently. Other members were greatly missed. The lesson: family is not forever.
Friends from different paths woven together into a blanket of support. The lesson: God provides people when we need them.
In her past, this day belonged to someone else.  Her life in shambles when they met, he quietly and patiently let her put it back together.
It didn’t matter to him that sex had happened.
It didn’t matter that years before that a tarnish fell upon her.
It didn’t matter what was taught in Church about the value of her virtue.
He wanted her. He saw adventure and possibility. He saw a partner who hungered for change. A girl fighting for a better life.
A perfect wedding plane was nicely spaced out after graduation. The socially appropriate timing for a momentous event. Then life happened: he was burning out on school and needed to slow down. She lost a job. The moment was now. The girl had time to focus on a wedding.  The last months of school could be a honeymoon. No pressures, just college life. It sounded perfect.
Of course friends and family were upset. They doubted the reasons for the date change. Questions of virtue and truth were bantered. Vegas was offered as a cheap substitute.
Miraculously everything fell into place.
The date picked them: January 27, 1990
The church happened to be available. The reception hall was available. The pastor was available. The people were available. Funds were provided. In only six short weeks they were here.
It was at this place where this girl stood. Surrounded by history to face a future.
Both wore white. The past didn’t matter. It was a new beginning.
A day built on simple words of what they would give and be to one another:
To have and to hold
For better or worse
For richer or poorer
In sickness and in health
To love and to cherish
As long as we both shall live.
Tears of hope streaming down her cheeks. Flowers vibrating within the bouquet. They turned to face a sea of people. Their first steps taken together led to a world of their own, on a day that will forever be their own holiday. A holiday to remember promises given in love which would end in adventure.
Twenty-five years later, I sit filled with gratitude for each and every day. This partnership built on a promise has been full of: Kids mostly grown. Laughter and fights. Success and failures. Togetherness and loneliness. Noise and silence. All of it held together by the daily choice of keeping those promises.
I love you more.
Forever. Always. No matter what.



Sunday, January 4, 2015

Ten Things of Thankfful #81

Ten Things of Thankful


It has been quiet here at the Lily Pad the past few weeks. In Real Life sucked me into all the Holiday Glories.
I patiently walked through Advent #1 and welcomed Christmas. I had no feelings of dread or anxiety-which was different. Some due to writing through the things which make Christmas difficult. Advent gave me the time to sit with those achy parts of my heart and make room for healing. However it wants to flow.
Nutcracker Mouse joined us for Christmas

Nutcracker was different this year. Ase didn’t dance, but Zany, Girly and Mutant did. Ase did help with props back stage with me when his schedule allowed. After three years of very emotional Nutcrackers, this one was delightful #2. The symphony had a guest conductor from the San Francisco Ballet. The orchestra was giddy, the dancers were relaxed and hardly anyone fell. To the amazement of many, I was giddy and bubbly and full of Sugar Plum sparkles.

The first semester is over! #3 Both boys hit that stuck in the mud transitional phase. If there was a degree or an award or some form of compensation for online gaming, Ase and Zany would be able to pay for college. The last three months were filled with starts, stops and complete Mom meltdowns as they figured out how to exit the land of Swamp Ass and into the land of young adult. With full ON CAMPUS schedules, I am hopeful a real change is around the corner.

Girly’s first semester is over as well. #4 Taking two classes at the private school our homeschool is associated with is perfect. She is managing the homework, making friends and watching her grades online. Along with projects, funny anecdotes and a growing love for the marginalized. Thankful for the private Christian school experience, she is looking forward to public high school next year. 
Girly snapped this while longboarding

Mutant got me a REAL laptop and a tablet for Christmas. #5 I danced around it for the last week and this is its maiden voyage in writing, editing and posting. The tablet was an add on, because he felt sorry for me playing Candy Crush on my itty bitty phone screen with Old Lady glasses. The whole thing still makes me feel a bit intimidated.
Old friends. #6 A friend from Jr. High and his family came into town for the holiday. The stars aligned and we were able to hang out for the day. Tell stories, watch kids skateboard and feel a bit of adventurous nostalgia.
Girly snapped this while I was busy talking.

Counting Mutant’s official CFO job is keeping him very busy and learning ALL the things #7. They launched a new accounting system and he’s been driving back and forth between offices. Because of it, we weren’t able to celebrate his birthday the traditional way, but had presents and ate cake on New Year’s Eve instead. Of course the kids and I had cake for brunch ON his birthday. OF COURSE we instagramed it. Because if it isn’t on social media, it didn’t happen. 

Working on boundaries in difficult relationships. #8. In writing about my sordid story in a safe place and the feedback, pockets of peace are emerging. Freedom is appearing in odd little places. Boundaries are finding words that at some point will be written out for my own clarity.
REST #9 Over the last two weeks, permissions granted to cancel things, lie around and eat what I felt like. The whole thing beautifully paced without pressures. Fun was had. Obligations fulfilled with boundaries. Moments of recuperation carved out. I am sad it’s over.
Tomorrow #10 is Monday. I am embarrassed to say that it is my favorite day of the week. Especially in a New Year. Monday is good for starting things. Monday is nice to reboot a project. Monday is the great mystery which leads into a week of adventure. It is a starting place for goals, cleaning the food regiment or beginning a new workout routine.  So… here we go folks…