New Neighbors

I have new neighbors.  What is more then that, I have added an apartment onto my cabin.  It is a small apartment but the family moving in understand that space is limited.  Mr. and Mrs. Hatch were bound and determined to join me in my adventure.  It didn’t matter that I turned them away twice, they tenaciously kept at me until I capitulated.  I have been listening to the knocking and banging of them building their little addition for the last week.  Listened to their talking back and forth, excited about the new digs and their new life together.  After awhile, I began to feel an attachment to them and am glad that they have moved in.

They ran into a bit of trouble today, however.  They were rudely made aware that the dimensions they thought the cabin was, is not in fact what it is.  I had to lend them a hand.  Pictures say more then words, so I will now introduce, Nutty and Meg through photo.

I am not entirely sure if this is Nutty or Meg. You know how married couples sometimes start to look alike. This was never truer then in these two.

 

After hanging the laundry, I went inside to get a drink of water. I found my Moo Kitty sitting on the bed, at full attention staring up at the wall where the Hatches could be heard working. The cats have been ignoring all the pounding, banging and rustling up to this point. I looked up and discovered why Moo was so interested. She was watching Meg or Nutty working!

 

I could see right away that the situation was way out of their league so I lent a hand. An O organics yogurt container, a cereal box, duct tape and a few nails worked perfectly. The Hatches don’t seem to mind the slap dash method, they are just happy to have their home done! Now they get to start furnishing it. 🙂

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Dark Center of the Universe–Modest Mouse

My favorite band is Modest Mouse.  It is funny because when I first heard them I didn’t like them but they grew on me as I came to appreciate the complexity of their musical and lyrical content.  When I would buy another of their CD’s, I  wouldn’t like it either, but it would grow on me as it challenged my ear and my mind forcing me to think of life, on many levels, in a different way.  Now I truly consider them as my absolute favorite band.   This particular song is on their CD, Moon and Antarctica.  You can buy it at Glacial Pace Records, which is Isaac Brock’s solution for giving an outlet for more….non commercial bands.  You can find some really awesome music there.

I have comtemplated this song over the last few weeks.  I feel it is the perfect song for coming to terms with long term relationships that ended badly.  I feel it can be sung by either party.  By contemplating the lyrics of this song; feeling them for myself and then with empathy toward the other parties in my relationships; I have been able to take responsibility for my part, release my guilt, see them in a different light thus releasing my anger toward them.  Pretty damn good for one song.  This song is what helped me move into the next phase of healing.  Thank you Modest Mouse!

I might disintegrate into the thin air if you like.
I’m not the dark center of the universe like you thought.
I might disintegrate into the thin air if you like.
I’m not the dark center of the universe like you thought.

Well it took a lot of work to be the ass that I am,
and I’m real damn sure that anyone can
equally easily fuck you over.

Well died saying something but didn’t mean it
every ones life ends but no one ever completes it.
Dry or wet ice they both melt and your equally cheated.

Well it took a lot of work to be the ass that I am,
and I’m really damn sure that anyone can
Equally easily fuck you over.

Well an endless ocean landing on an endless desert
Well its funny as hell but none laughs when they get there
If you can’t see the thin air
Than why the hell should you care.

Well it took a lot of work to be the ass that I am,
And I’m really damn sure that anyone can
Equally easily fuck you over

Well I’m sure you tell me you got nothing to say
But our voices shook hands the other day.
If you can’t see the thin air what the hell is in the way.

I might disintegrate into the thin air if you’d like.
And I’m not the dark center of the Universe like you thought.

Well it took a lot of work to be the ass that I am,
And I’m really damn sure that anyone can
Equally easily fuck you over

Well an endless ocean landing on an endless desert
Well its funny as hell but no one laughs when they get there
If you can’t see the thin air than why the hell should you care.

Well it took a lot of work to be the ass that I am,
And I’m really damn sure that anyone can
Equally easily fuck you over.

Well god saying something but he didn’t mean it
Everyone’s life ends but no one ever completes it
Dry or wet ice they both melt and your equally cheated.

Well, it took a lot of work to be the ass that I am,
And I’m really damn sure that anyone can
Equally easily fuck you over.

I’m sure you’ll tell me you got nothing to say
But our voices shook hands the other day.
If you can’t see the thin air than what the hells in your way?

So Long

The time has come for the next step in the healing process. To do this I must walk out the door of the house of my old life and go on a walk-a-bout in the half world that is neither old nor new. How long it will take, I do not know, a day, a week, a month a year? No telling. But I must lock the door tight so the past does not follow me, whispering to me of my hypocrisy as I combine the two halves of myself into one. Scouring out the old ideas, beliefs and false assumptions so I can start anew, whole and fresh.

I am closing this site down during this period of time. In the past I have simply wiped everything out. Instead, I am going to change the privacy level so no one can read it. When the time is right, when I know what it is I wish to bring forward into my new state of being, I will reopen the appropriate posts and begin to add new ones.

I thank you all for being my witness. I will not be gone forever. Knowing my love of writing, it will probably be sooner rather then later.
Take care,
I hold you in my heart,
Zen

Letter to God

Dear God,

I am just a little bit curious, OK, massively curious, what this next relationship is all about. Would it be so bad for me to have a bit of NORMAL in my life. You have to admit that you have sent me on a path through the woods of weird. Just in doing that you have made it nigh impossible for me to find someone normal who would fit into my life as it stands now but this takes the cake. REALLY takes the cake.

I try to listen, honestly I do. I heard the quiet voice inside, the click of contentment and rightness, your sultry whisper in my heart, but Jesus H. Christ how can I present this to anyone I know without being labeled nuts? A married man who got the same feeling of strong unresistable recognition that I did, whose wife wants to meet me? For the love of all that is holy, how in the world can I follow this through? How can I not walk away from it, turn my back on it after all that I have had the “joy“ to experience? Can you please tell me what I did in my previous life that would make it such an imperative that I meet so many of my soul co-travelers in one go around? Sigh, trying for a positive outlook, is this the clearing house life in which I am making amends and paying penance for all my previous lives so I can move on to the next with my karmic debt paid off? Do I get to be a bodhisattva next time?

I know the choice is mine. He and I have only spoken across the counter at work. Even though the connection is strong for both of us, I know I can walk away without any stain added. But you are a devious wretch, you know I won’t because I am who I am, curiosity will propel me forward even though I know it is to certain doom. You know I HAVE to find out more about him because I can’t resist a good tale, I can’t resist that whisper of rightness that touches my soul every time you come up with a new twisted turn in the plot in the story that is my life. Sigh. At least this time I am not in love, just have known this man forever even though we have never met and have barely talked. Freaking annoying is what it is. Grr. Well, can you grant me one wish? Please let his wife and I get along. I could really use another good girl friend.

Your ever so frustrated and helpless minion,
With a grudging love,
Zen

PS Since you are messing with my head again how about some divine intervention in relation to the ants that keep coming into my house? The cayenne pepper helped a lot but I still have a few that wander about uninvited. Could you tell them to go away for me please. Thank you.

Third Step

“Made a decision to turn our will and our lives to the care of God as we understood him.”

This is the third step of the twelve steps of Alcoholics Anonymous and Al-anon. I have been contemplating this step. I ask myself “why is it that you chose a God that you have so many confrontations with?”

Listen to this excerpt from the Al-anon book “Courage to Change”:

“I think of this care as a source of love and support that surrounds me in my daily life. I do not need to earn it or to work for it; I need only be receptive to it. I continue to have a will to exercise and a life to live, but I do so bathed in a light of love and understanding.”

When I first read this I was irritated. Wouldn’t it be nice not to have a butfulio for a God? Wouldn’t it be nice to have one that was sweet and understanding all the time instead of an Old Testament badass? This irritation only lasted a minute or two, then I realized that I had in my understanding of God, exactly what I needed. This is, a higher power who can endure my rage without being harmed. One that tests me, works me, makes me look at myself, makes me develop my soul, forces me to dig deep but when I get angry at the troubles, he allows me to rant and rail and kick my feet and holler “NO!”

I also realized that I had exactly what was stated in that passage, I never fear retribution when I call him a dick, a fuck and an asshole. I know he loves me unconditionally and will never leave me no matter how angry and belligerent I get. I know he will always be there, in the light that streams through the branches of the trees in the morning, the sound of the rain on the roof, the taste of hot chocolate on my tongue. I know that when I pray he will hear me even if what I pray for isn’t in the cards this time. His laughter runs through my life, as he points to the humor in all situations no matter how dark, helping me see the irony and the beauty that lies within every day, every circumstance.

This is what I needed in a God. Someone who is strong enough in himself to not be turned away by my need to speak my tongue. Someone who doesn’t beat me down for being mad–or ignore me, or discount me, or punish me. He just accepts me and strangely enough I accept him.

I have interviewed many deities over the course of my life, through church, books and groups. I believe they are all one and the same, just in different smocks. God is infinite therefore can play many parts, fulfilling the need of each petitioner, even atheists whether they know it or not. This aspect of God, with whom I can bump heads with and quarrel with, who makes my life troublesome with his message delivery system, is the only one that I have really trusted. With the others, all sweet and nice, I felt I had to be better than I am or fall into disgrace. With many, you have to have absolute belief in order to be heard and answered. I am not good with absolute belief, I question everything. So my God doesn’t give a shit if you believe in him or not, he doesn’t need your belief to exist because he is all that is. He isn’t self important, needing constant praise because he has a good strong healthy self esteem. By the way, he wrote all the books on a lark, he had especial fun with the bible. Once again, I must point out the problems with his message delivery system and his sense of humor. He did fairly well when he picked Shakespeare as a messenger, however, many of his other choices were not so good, like me for instance…..

Which brings me to my next Shakespearean quote:

“He draweth out the thread of his verbosity finer than the staple of his argument.”

That said, I draw this post to a close with a kind adieu and good night.

Letter to God: Damn it, you are right

Dear God,

OK, I give up.  You are right, I am wrong.  BUT I still say no to certain aspects of the situation until further notice.

Love,

me

PS thanks for the awesome friend.   Thank you.

Aging

I am growing old before my eyes. Fighting a rash on my face that has lasted a few months has brought my attention to a focus. I have watched the lines appear, slowly, one after another, the skin on my neck loosening. It has been a hard year.

I think about that phrase, “It has been a hard year.” Looking back on my life, I have not faced anything more difficult this year then I have in years previous, the only difference is my desire to not be in denial. Facing who I am, how I feel and honestly assessing what I have done, has changed me. For the better? I hope. Taking responsibility for my feelings and actions is written on my face however. For the first time since I was a child, I look my age, 44. My life is halfway done.

Acceptance. Part of me wants fight against this aging process. Go out and spend the little money I have on Oil of Olay. Stop the process in its tracks with modern science. To what purpose? We all grow old, no bottle of fancy chemicals can stop it. My hair is grey. Has been for a long time. I fight that with Nice & Easy. Has it stopped the process of gravity? No. A good bra hides it, but someday in the future I am going to want to be naked with a man. Candle light.

I look at the people who are my age who come into the store where I work. I find them beautiful, attractive, handsome. They find me the same or seem too. Rash and all, I have gotten more invites then I have since high school. Men and women, talking to one another on a different level that isn’t about precarious joy and fun, but the hard knocks of life that put each of the lines on our faces and each of our grey hairs on our heads. Acceptance from my peers. Inclusion in a group based not on what we look like but what we have survived. There is an energy of realness, of…….understanding that dreams are just phantasms that haunt life keeping us from seeing what matters. An understanding that all we have is this one day, whether it sucks or not, this day is ours to live, to endure, to enjoy. Tomorrow may not come. We have seen enough people our own age die to trust that tomorrow is another day. We know that the world is not in our control and fate is fickle. We accept this day for what it is, good or bad.

Perhaps this acceptance is what freaks young people out so much. They have the world ahead of them, fresh and new. My daughter graduated from college last week. Summa Cum Laude. I cried. Cried off and on for hours. I kept thinking of her in her little pink cowboy boots and orange Halloween sweatshirt with the black cat on it, tromping into the library to pick out books. Thirty at a time. We would read 5 or 8 or 10, every night. First I would read them to her, then she would recite them to me, then before I knew it she was reading them to me. We read Lord of the Rings together during elementary school. I would read some, she would read some. Now she is a woman, a year older then I was when I gave birth to her. She has the world ahead of her. I wonder what she dreams about, what she hopes for. She keeps those thoughts close to her chest like a good poker hand. When you tell someone your dreams, they try to alter them with shoulds and how to do’s, trying to make them their dreams since they failed their own. Life has been hard on her. She had a crazy mom. But for all my failings, I instilled some good too. Individuality.

My son walked out on an assembly yesterday. He was angered by the changing of part of the National Anthem for “school spirit“. He felt it disrespectful to our country and the men and women who have fought and died for it. He is now displaying that anarchist in him that was instilled in him by his anarchist mother. Not to break windows, but to quietly decline to take part in a society norm that he feels is wrong. It was a small step but I applaud it. Even though I should yell at him for cutting school, I couldn’t quite do it. Despite all my failings I have shown him to stand up against his own apathy. I am proud. He tells me all his dreams of being a mechanic, of modding cars. I try to encourage him to follow those dreams. I try not to alter them. Dreams are good.

And yet, at 44 I have let go of dreams. I have accepted that dreams lead to heartache as you watch them die. But I will not dissuade my children from dreaming. It is a passion of youth. Perhaps that is why I am suddenly getting old. What would I dream about now? My pleasures are simple. I have discovered that I truly enjoy forestry. I like cutting up the old dead and down trees to use as firewood. I like my new chainsaw. I like thinning out young trees so that the strongest can grow. I like using an ax. I like watching the wildflowers progress through their lifespan. I don’t want much. I wish there were more organic vegetables available at Safeway. I am looking forward to mudding my walls in this year so that the drafts will be eliminated. I have found another crack in the wall were the straw clay shrunk and I can see daylight. No wonder I was so cold last winter. I can’t wait to paint the walls. I love painting walls, adding color and texture. I will be learning how to make different types of natural paints, experimenting with different recipes until I get the right mix. It will be far different then buying a can of paint from Home Depot. So, perhaps I do dream, simpler ones, but I have realized that I don’t have to dream to “become something” because I already AM something. For the first time, I feel as if I belong in my life.

As it is, I am 44 and now look my age. There is no turning back. Only forward, forever, slowly, forward. One wrinkle at a time.

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