building from the bottom up

I am here in Nicaragua. I am here to heal a heart and to find my soul that I feel may lie in the deepest crust of the earth. This has been a very rough two years; not only for me but for many others. Covid snatched many souls and sent them down into the earth where my soul is probably hanging out. I, like many of us feel discombobulated, unsure and lacking deep connection. I thought I had deep connection pre covid but that damn virus must have eaten it. I feel bereft and floating into someplace where I have no idea where it will end up. I feel this place though. It is a place with a history of political turmoil where friends warn me to be careful. It is a place of heat and humidity and amazing tropical lush growth. It is a place where I feel comfortable and warm. I am here celebrating a birthday and going through a divorce. Many of us seek solace in places unknown; to possibly get lost and lick our hurt wounds. I wonder why it is my soon to be ex fails to extend birthday wishes which to me makes absolutely no sense but it is not my place to deal with another’s dysfunction. As humans we often wonder why and attempt to fix stuff that may not be able to be fixed. I move on and tend to matters of my own. They say change is the only thing constant. As cliche as it sounds I find truth there as change is the royal bitch it says it is. I am in this place looking at houses and feel the need to find a complete renovation project. It reminds me of my life, collapsed and in need of a total overhaul. It amazes me how the two things relate, my life and a house in need of complete renovation. For many of us a complete do over is called for. We must let go of the loose standing and delapidated structure to build something more sturdy and able to stand the test of time. I am feeling my aloneness but I also feel my freedom. It is a feeling of not having to ask permission and to feel in my soul what is best for me. We often fear making a mistake but I am also learning mistakes are lessons. We learn and we move on able to know better the next time or not. I walked into that old huge building on the corner and looked at its potential. I saw the jumbled roses and lemon trees in the back yard and in a moment I recognized its beauty. That lemon tree was doing all it could to produce those lemons amidst weeds and neglect but it was surviving just like many of us do every single day.

Walk On

There are times when we all get bogged down with stuff. We find ourselves in that black hole thinking we may never see the sun. We forget our dreams and our plans. We allow others to dictate or have a say in where we are heading. Then one day, the sun comes out and we start to move out of the hole. Our sights become clearer and we see anew. We begin to remember where we were heading and start to pick up the boulders that had gotten in the way. We begin to understand that life is a journey and no one has the map. Humans tend to be a comfort seeking organism and will often do anything to maintain a status quo even in times of needed change. We are given platitudes such as “the devil you know is better than the devil you don’t know.” Yes change is hard and the path is filled with stones, rocks, and holes but the journey just might lead to the grassy knoll. Society tells us if we work hard we will have the so called American dream. We will have the house with 2 kids, the picket fence and retire one day and wait for grandkids. Society tells us this should be enough; that this is to what we should all aspire. We head into that hole when we feel we have fallen behind. Things are just not working out for us and we are far from that American dream. We fail to realize the gifts of the universe and that are all here to walk our own paths. We sometimes fail to understand we need to lift the boulders and keep on walking. We are so busy we fail to hear that quiet whisper saying “this way.” Our paths may look foreign or strange to others but once we stop to listen we don’t need the road map. We see that one size does not fit all. To follow our path we must be courageous and have faith in ourselves and our guidance. We must be true to our vision and purpose. No walking the undefined path is never easy and many will ridicule and judge but to reach that spot of soft grass we must look forward. We must leave the comfort zone and strike out into territories unknown. The road may look long and arduous but one step at a time we will arrive.

time is on our side

There is one thing that I dislike and that is change. For a large part of my life I have had the good fortune of being in line with stability. I was raised in a stable loving family and comfort well it was always there. I knew my parents and my family had my back. I expected forever and I like many others of a young age always believed I would have my forever. Change knocked on my door when I was just 21 years old. Surely I had the world by the tail until that fateful day a knock on the door changed my stability and rocked my world. My only brother, the baby of our family had been killed in a head on auto collision. That day my forever came to an end. I watched as my family sank into a place of unknowing and fear. That day my father became fearful of the world and all the bad things that could possibly befall us. He had lost his trust.

I watch this day as my parents are now elderly. I watch as their gait is slow and they are unsteady. My father is now in a wheelchair and my mother gets around with a walker. I have witnessed my father go from my strong able bodied protector to the man of my heart that I now protect and help. I have winced as I have had to bathe my father and assist his bodily needs shortly after he was confined in the chair. I have seen him gain more strength and learn new skills with his sheer determination and often marveled at his will. There were moments of our togetherness when he admitted his fear and I watched his frustration when he would attempt the smallest task. Being a care taking daughter to a father requires humitilty on all parts. Modesty came and quickly left as we travelled this road together. My mother comes from strong country stock and was always the backbone and strength of the family. She is the one who holds the family stories, the one I can ask about relatives long since gone. I too witness her ever increasing frailty and realize one day if I outlive my parents I will become an orphan. I don’t want to be an orphan and I wonder who I will call when I no longer have my parents. Who do I run to when life gets hard or I get scared? One never realizes how alone we are until we want to reach out to our mama’s.

I am blessed to still have my parents in my life and try my best to appreciate each moment. Being with elderly parents teaches us great patience and requires us to stretch in ways we never thought we could. It requires compassion, love, strength and endurance. It requires us to answer the same question over again even it is has been 20 times. It tells us that one day we too will be in this place if we are fortunate enough to have a long life. Love requires us to go the extra distance all the while taking care of our own physical and mental needs. We are all being given a gift and we need to recognize it for what it is.

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Here we go

I sit here wondering about relationship. I had thought about love in my last writing, now I think about caring and ego. I have watched as grown long married men and women have sat looking at each other without anything to say. I wonder what happens when the children have all left. What happens when previous lovers stop caring. We all know those first feelings of love or should I say lust. It feels as if one cannot live without the other. Any amount of time apart is too long. We look and act our best. We know eye contact. In fact we know many details of our beloved’s face. We envision our lives together and all of the magic that will happen. The fairytale says so. It tells of living happily ever after. Until one day, we stop looking, we become distracted, we become busy and we forget the color of our beloved’s eyes. We resort to drinking too much, watching too much tv or merely sitting on the couch picking lint from our navels. Sex? what is that. It becomes ok not to respond to text or to say goodbye or for that matter to hold our beloved in our arms for human contact. One day we wake up and ask how did we get here and what happened. We are surprised when someone else has recognized the color of our beloved’s eyes. All along we were just too busy.

I once asked an esthetician if men ever visited for facials or grooming. She tells me the only time they do is when they are separated or divorced. I wondered why? Are we too wrapped up in comfort and taking our beloved for granted to put our best foot forward? We are all too happy to be the lure for something or someone else but the one we have cared about the most is now something to be tolerated, something for our comfort. We merely have stopped caring or trying.

It has been said the divorce rate is approximately 50 percent. We come to the place where we say no more and we can no longer go forward. It leaves me and others to wonder if there is in fact an expiration date on marriage or if in fact marriage is something that has outlived its usefulness. Make no bones about it, for many to wake to the same face for 50 or more years especially with very little affection left is akin to a sentence in Alcatraz. You wake one day to a man or a woman 50 pounds heavier with hair peering out of every orifice and wonder what the hell and top that with one who is emotionally void and lacking in concern and what you have is a recipe for disaster. When we realize from day one we are not designed or cut out to be a husband or a wife or for some reason feel we have made a mistake the onus is on us and no one else to stand up to our reality and take Relationships are not for the faint of heart or the timid. They require care, time and committment. It ceases to be just about us and our needs. For once we have to sometimes hold the heart of the other and some are just not capable.

The muse sleeps

I can’t create. I am an artist and I cannot create. I am barren of ideas and living in a fallow field. I awake with a mind full of promise yet when my feet hit the floor it is all gone. They play with me, the ideas I mean. They taunt me with the thought of grandiosity yet they fail to mature. I cannot create. I have allowed it to bother me, to tease me with failure, thinking maybe that is it. I will never again create. Words fail me too and the blank screen looks as if it is laughing at me. I know if I do any other things like maybe run errands, spend time on the phone I will not have to face the demon of despair. Procrastination. It gives me an excuse.

I have been in angst for the past year so I pat myself on the back to ease my worried nerves. I tell myself it will get better. The muse will return with a vengeance. I tell myself this past year has been something to reckon with. Living with the threat of a virus that promises to ravage my being, forcing me into isolation is nothing to smirk about. I have been stressed. It has been a time living with daily updates of either apolitical or medical maelstrom. I tell myself maybe if I turn off news and ease my nerves with meditation, I will regroup and all will be well. I tell myself perhaps in meditation the ideas will flow and my hands will feel like working again. Alas, I need a nap.

I have come to the place of understanding. It has been a time of change and upheaval. My body feels it and my mind is trying to make sense of it all. We are often our own worst enemies; demanding perfection even when the body says no. Stress is heavy and demands a recognition. So for now the clay waits. The words although few and far between will also wait. I tell myself there is always tomorrow. I take a nap

riding the wave

Standing in the ocean with my daddy a big wave knocked me down.  I was 5 at the time and I had not been paying attention.  Daddy had always warned me to stand where I could still see the sand so th…

Source: A Different Terrain