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Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Valentine

  Right now, I'm feeling lovely, all rosey, bright and optimistic. I'm in typical new moon, list making, manifesting mode. My sleep has been better and I've began cutting my coffee with decaf. I always teased my Grandma for doing 1/2 caff but I get it now! I am a quantity person so my coffee has to be less powerful. I accept it.
  Last week we had the flu. The dr thinks so. Whatever was going on, felt terrible.  I was ridiculously tired and out of it. For 2 days I just laid about. I felt intense delirium whenever my gal summoned me (for juice, popsicles, to refill the hot water bottle or put a new movie on). I watched Crow 1 & 2 (2 was so so bad but the outfits were pretty 90s amazing), and season 6 or Parenthood. It was a foggy daze of senseless streaming... My dog makes a pretty sweet bed buddy/hot water bottle. Viggo Mortensen was surprisingly low maintenance during the sickness. I had all this homework to do. I did it, but the writing and my analytical powers were totally haywire. I turned in some goofy papers. I posted incoherent responses to online discussions. I dragged myself to piano class to poorly play an 8 second composition because my piano teacher does not allow make up tests ever and it was a midterm. I felt pissed off and burdened by school and then I decided I don't want to go to school anymore. And then I felt free. I felt elation. I tired it. I did not like it. I think working full time, being a full time single mama and going to school full time is pretty much impossible for anyone. I cracked halfway through my first quarter.
   My little dalliance with academia did illustrate a thing or two. I have realized that I can make daily time for reading & writing (probably not the 4-5 hours daily I have been doing) and I can do whatever I want to do! I can change my mind at anytime about anything I want cuz I'm an adult, the Queen of my own reality and damn it, life should be fun! And right now I want life to feel more bohemian, artsy, freewheeling and less stodgy/rule laden. Ladies, let's party...
 ooooooh and during the sickness I did knit while watching bad movies. A new hat for my little dove is almost totally complete.

   So, let me put on my rose-tinted glasses and admit that I'm pretty smitten. I'm in such a state of delicious adoration. This guy, my boyfriend, really is the bees knees. I don't think I've ever been so consistently non-annoyed and blissfully calm and chill around someone ever. I do think that I've grown a lot and changed and am more self aware now than ever before (blah blah blah) but I also believe my guy to be a jewel of a human. He is stunning.
   On Valentines Day my sweetheart showed up with a box of chocolates and tools. My house is quirky (ie falling apart) and there are a lot of issues. The busted/drippy pipes under the sink needed some attention. Oh, I do like a man, wielding tools, who can fix things. I could get used to this... I feel truly seen (envisioned by another person as I want to be seen and also seen for who I really am) by him. Honestly, I feel like I shouldn't even jinx myself by talking about our romance much. Love can be such a delicate animal. I don't need to figure it out, I'm happy to simply be in it.

      I was also given the most miserable and disturbing children's book I've ever seen. This book is full of freaky dead body illustrations and detailed descriptions of the plague (so goth!) and it was my man's when he was a kid. One of my areas of interest is the darker parts of history. I can't help it. I'm Gothic through & through.
    I'm sitting here drinking coffee and eating a successful gluten free banana bread that I made myself. I'll post the recipe next time (it's tasty and not sandy or overly dense-hooray!). The sun is blazing a pretend springtime day outside. Time to walk Viggo and there is a little hill of towels in front of me waiting to be folded, chickens angrily wanting out of the coop, a yard in hopeless disarray, my retail space (that's been so neglected) needs attention and yes some more homework that must be done. It's all ok. I'll do it all. The sunshine makes it extra alright. xo m

Sunday, February 8, 2015

the secret language...

    Hi. I've missed you. Really. Life has been just kids, coffee, school, work, coffee, kids, school, collapse...  repeat repeat repeat... I think of how apt the phrase "burning the candle at both ends" is. And it was just full moon (who else felt it like crazy?), I have pms and damn it, everyone in Seattle is sick. I'm not joking everyone. The viruses pass in waves through our home. My children's classrooms are filthy germ collections.
   So I was coursing along, feeling my way through beginning to learn again, really enjoying school and, a month ago, I started spending time with a boy.  I'm getting to know him on a magical level, it  occupies an entirely different realm (stunning astrological compatibility). The instantaneous feeling of calm is so strong and sweet. Love is: laying around talking for hours, gluten free baking, being favorites, eating steak & fried potatoes for dinner, cold brew coffee, coconut milk ice cream for breakfast, laughing all the time and so many other things. It's a different experience. Perfectly unique.
     The Northwestern gloom is here, there is always a kettle of water boiling, a cup of tea brewing. The drafty, dampness of our old house is unreal. Every year I sing my song that I won't spend another winter here and here we still are, 5 winters later. I'm not gonna get into the state of rentals. I can't... It's too Dickens-ian. I'd rather talk about cemeteries, romance and the coming of spring...
 I drive by the lake view cemetery at least twice a day. On certain foggy days it beacons me so beautifully, it's impossible to resist. I walk and write in my head here. Interesting ideas come to me when my body is engaged in effortless physical activity. I walk and walk, visit the Lee graves, walk more, look for the oldest headstones... I'm consumed by nostalgic teen imaginings as I write draft after draft of a creative nonfiction piece called The Secret Language for my writing class. The piece is about my high school best friend, some of our secrets, our adventures in shoplifting and vandalism... It's about our spoken secret language-made up of inside jokes, witticisms and weird recollections. But it also references our intuitive, unspoken way of energetic communication. In thinking about this (during the, often, tedious process of refining the story, over and over), I'm starting to see how there is a secret language to everything. It exists within most relationships. It's bittersweet and wondrous how these miniature universes can be created simply by being in the company of another person we adore. Or within nature. I feel the secret language all around me.
      My gal came home, today, from an overnight with her Papa, all pukey. She's been bundled on the couch watching cartoons (Waldorf philosophy evaporates and it's a free for all media-fest when she's sick, y'all) and barking orders, all day. I'm coughing wimpily and drinking tea. This is how the winter is here. People just seems to have this lingering-kinda-bad-meh-cold that drags on for weeks or months.

     I have found that it's easier for me to write or do homework in a cafe or coffee shop. When I try to be productive and work at home, I end up super distracted by chores, projects or Viggo Mortensen (the dog). Ultimately I have this dream of having my own "office" (sigh, like Margot Tenenbaum's apt she kept to write in...) but paying more rent isn't going to happen right now.  So (gasp...) I'm one of those people on a laptop at a coffee shop. I used to be so annoyed but I understand now! It's so quiet in coffee shops too cuz everyone's working.  I set a reasonable time limit of 1-2 hours. It's cool.
   I have been eating a ridiculous amount of pastries. I am gluten free. ok 75% of the time. Sometimes I just really want biscotti, apple cake or a vegan donut. Constant denial of wants/treats makes me cranky and it's just really hard. I like the sweets. I'm afraid my sweet tooth is unparalleled.
   After many weeks of patient waiting, my California Poppy tincture was ready to strain and decant. I dreamt, months ago, that (my mother land) the golden state's, state flower, was a magic spirit herb. In my dream, I laid in a field of the silky orange California Poppies and promptly fell asleep (It's always so strange to me when I fall asleep in a dream, it happens to me pretty often). When I woke, I decided to start the tincture and hoped it would be just the thing to take the edge off my insomnia. And, it totally helps! Just 5-10 an evening and I am feeling way mellow. It's lovely. I think my romance is playing it's part in helping me sleep better. I really have never felt so tranquil around a man. The vibes are like a pastel pinky peach sunset. It's serene.
   Oh surprise. More coffee. A totally essential lifestyle ingredient for one who has too much work to do and not enough hours in a day. Gotta cut that out, pull back a bit. I had a little fingers/toes numb, vision altering panic attack yesterday that forced me back into reality. I cannot drink coffee like a trucker, I just am not constitutionally able to handle it. I freak when I have too much caffeine.
   This week, all heady teen dreams and pms, led me to pull out my copy of the Bell Jar. I haven't read it in so long. It seems so fresh. Plus I read differently now. Educated, collegiate style! I'm annotating, highlighting, scribbling, etc. I'm seeing things in old books that never jumped out before. I love it.
   The looming to-do this week is to "help" my little dove make 20 hand made crafty Valentines for her teachers & classmates. It's a process, best approached by doing a few at a time. I have a few assignments due but mid-terms (that stuff was bananas by the way-so much work!) are over and I can lightly relax in the school realm. There are little spring break trip plans beginning to bounce about in my mind. I'm thinking a trip to California is in order. I've been missing family and friends in San Diego (and I miss the sunshine terribly too).
   Outside the rain is falling hard and I need to delicately push this feverish six year old over a bit (she always sleeps in my bed when she's sick) and try and sleep. Dreams of poppy fields and California sun await. xo m
  

Sunday, January 4, 2015

a new year


  As I sit here and drink my jasmine tea, I am thinking on intentions. The last few years I have written lengthy lists with dozens of goals and many have been accomplished but this years goes deeper. This new years eve/new years day I had only one thing on my mind. Love. Real love. I want to believe in Love. I think there is really only one love for me. The love that I felt as a dream when I was a child. The love that I felt when my own babies came out of my body and I finally held them in my arms. The love that I so wanted to feel with most romantic partners I've had, but it usually disolved for one reason or another. There aren't kinds of love, only LOVE. Fierce and powerful and when you are with that person you create a universe unto yourselves and it's beautiful. I have felt it at times and I have seen it between others and my belief in real love it why I have ended so many previous relationships. I had to believe that there was more than what I was currently experiencing. I had to follow my heart.
   For several weeks I have been attempting to date. Um, it's weird, not for me. I guess I'm just not that modern. I do everything else online but yeah, not the dating... I got rid or and deactivated it all, bye bye. Back to the old fashioned ways of actually coming across that needle in the haystack in real life. I'm fine with that. The waiting... I welcome it. I've got things to do, school starts tomorrow for me and kids. I will be in class and doing homework daily. Great, distraction of mind.
 Every online connection I made was either depressing, slightly scary, annoying or in on case pretty disheartening... I don't have time to pursue sub par connections. There have been many hot tub soaking sessions in my beautiful friends jacuzzi where we exchange stories of the most horrible/hilarious texts know on earth. dating war stories... It hardens you. I'm too soft and strive to stay that way. Instead of dating I will go dancing. My savior at the age of 15 was the dance floor so back to that. I will dance with friends, I will dance on my own if I must but dancing I will go. Every sat night and other nights if it looks extra fun... dance dance dance...
   Winter wraps around us here. It's cold and constantly wet, the sun rarely lights the sky. Every year it hits me somewhat unexpectedly. How is it possible to forget the gloom? Lovely spring and summer wipe it from my mind, every time. January finds me feeling like such a hardy pioneer. I'm a maiden of fortitude simply because I choose to call this damp, grey land my home.
 There have been 2 colds. One that morphed into another so I guess that has a little to do with my sensitive, introspective musings.  Now I have a sinus infection and that lovely disconnected head feeling that goes along with it. Lots of time logged in bed writing. Journal writing, short stories, memoir-always plenty of that. Working out my feelings by writing the down is what works for me.
 There have been certain themes in my Tarot readings. Love and struggle, betrayal oh and coming into money (yes please!! still waiting to hear about financial aid)- it is almost tax time.

 And there it is, in red ink. My final stick n poke tattoo of 2014.  Now I'm off to plant my garlic that is late late late getting into the earth. better late than never! xo m

Sunday, December 21, 2014

intentional...

  I am sniffling, and dripping elderberry syrup into my mouth by the hour. A teaspoon an hour, every hour, until it starts to dissipate. Picked up some cold germs. Oh the perils of our Northwestern Clime.
 And, Oh hello, my dears... Where have I been for over a month or more. Away on a marvelous vacation? Alas, sadly, no. I was sliding down the rabbit hole of (gasp...) online dating. That world is a little depressing. I mean, it's what people do, right? I do everything else online, work, shop etc, why not pursue dating. It's just, unromantic and really, it's looking for a needle in a haystack (A haystack that is really one of those gigantic trash islands floating around in the middle of the ocean). Chills... I have reached my limit. I'm too sensitive. I have decided that every time I think about a boy or boys I have to do 10 squats (My friend told me about a couple she knows who have to do 10 squats every time they say something negative...well they are super in shape now and don't say negative things as much). I'm getting a gym membership and have to write nightly instead of wasting precious time scrolling through profiles and sifting through bad/boring/creepy messages. I'm done. Back to the nunnery. It's cool. Really. Can't force that kind of magic. I mean you can... But that's a whole nother post titled "don't fool w the dark arts"... I'll be fine. Just retiring my winsome dreams of eating ice cream in bed w anyone this winter... I have Viggo Mortensen, He's the perfect 6lb bed buddy.
 oh heyyyyyy, my dog is ridiculous!! Little bat faced Mr Tiny Body... Big attitude on this gem, I named him rightly.
 Gloom has set in. I dig it, it's good. I pretend I'm in a Swedish film, quietly, walking through the darkness and drizzle. In my head, I'm writing words for passages in my Vamp Book or bits of memoir (this month alone I have begun 3 chapters for a new collection of personal stories...), wait, I have been writing! But I can write more.
 I sew, my machine is broken, so it's entirely by hand, which I enjoy. Very slow, thoughtful, meditative. It connects me to my favorite times. Puritan, Victorian, Depression Era. Oh woe is me, I'm sitting by the firelight stitching away and drawn into a historic circle of sisterhood, women who stitched at night by candlelight, after the babes had fallen asleep. Oh! Please excuse me, While I let out my hens! They will be so cross as It's after 10am... I'm such  a lazy farm mistress today!...
 My nightly tarot readings continue. Getting more acquainted with this beautiful deck and open to the guidance I get. I usually post my readings (right now, I'm fond of doing a 7 card layout) on my instagram.  I feel like I get a really solid picture of what my path is by practicing this divination nightly. The same cards come up, again and again. See. Understand. Hear this... It's beautiful and a magical connection to the other lands that I can hold in my human hands. I treasure my cards.
  When I read tarot, I think about my intention. I draw the cards with intention. This practice has overlapped into every moment of everything I do. How can I pursue this with intention? Harness my feeling in the moment and feel my path, shine and remain free from distracting feelings that aren't always accurate. My beautiful lady friend of nearly 20 years texted me this morning "Just move in your light n live n try to be distant if it's possible" good advice (especially to the lovelorn).
  Tonight is Winter Solstice. After I attend a party with my babes, where most will be tipsy from too much mulled wine, I will come home and write down a list of all my intentions. A fresh manifestation to be wrapped in red ribbon and set to shine in the light of the moon. Always write intentions in the present tense as if they are already happening. 
  And now I need to squeeze Viggo into his little lilac, cashmere sweater vest. Another teaspoon of elderberry syrup. Off to walk on this chilly morning and treat myself with a little black gold-caffeine. It is Winter Solstice. I am. and continue to be. I will live with bright intention. xo m



Monday, November 17, 2014

fall apart

  Last week, the black clouds descended and I was left hopeless, limp and quiet for days. Tears fell frequently and I was overly emotional. A moon cycle, mourning a love lost, financial stress, school uncertainty, struggling with accepting the changes in rhythm-when my car broke (yet again), endless cold in the drafty house, kids that argue over wearing coats and then the light bulb in the fridge went out and I burnt the toast (the little things are always the last straw when I am frustrated) and it seemed the world was ending...  Saturday morning I went to a meeting of women I love and trust and cried and laughed and felt their openness, love and support. I was lifted, enfolded in kindness. I could see out of the greyness that had, moments before, seemed all around me.

 Depression is a strange creature. It feeds on lonliness, sleep deprivation, stress... When I feel dark now, I instantly seek out the wisdom and company of my dearest friends, I call my therapist, I watch a fluffy episode of Gilmore girls, I eat chocolate and know that the feeling will pass. I just have to busy myself and keep moving forward. I used to enjoy really wallowing in my bummer trips but that only made me sadder. I choose happiness.
  Lessening stress is something I am working on. Even fun, exciting things (like all the planning involved in going back to school) are stressful to me. I'm delicate. I can be tough and a warrior but basically I'm a soft, tender hearted lady who is easily shaken cuz I am so hyper aware and want to avoid big problems so I'm always evaluating things like "wait is this ok??" just to be cautious. I think as time goes on I will be less easily jarred by the little challenges of life but right now I'm learning and discovering what works for me as a healthy adult.
 I did get to see Death in June last week. I nearly bailed on going because I was having this really nervous day with awful "prom night butterflies" in my stomach all day. The minute I got there, all my anxiety dissolved. The show was euphoric, haunting and transporting. It felt so intimate-certainly less than 100 people there. The energy field onstage was as dark as my blackest dreams. Douglas P played my most favorite DIJ song, "Fall Apart". I had this wonderful moment of intoxicating pure perfection while he played it. Consumed with the feeling that everything is alright and exactly as it should be. Shadows followed me home. The words echoing in my mind...


And shall I wake from Dreams
For the Glory of Nothing
For the cracking of the Sun
For the crawling down of Lies?
And if We fall from Dreams
Shall we push them into Darkness
And stare into the Howling
And clamber into Night?
And if I fall from Dreams
All my Prayers are Silenced
To Love is to lose
And to lose is to Die...
And why did you say
That things shall fall
And fall and fall and fall
And fall apart?

  It was heavy. I was pondering it for days...

...and these two are buddies. Nothing heavy there. My cat, Thomas, is kind of a jerk. He doesn't care for anyone. He tolerates me, when he's in the mood but really he's a super sensitive, prone to flip on a dime, sort of guy. My tiny dog, Viggo has wormed his way into Thomas' heart. They lay together! They cuddle. This cat is not a cuddler. It's beautiful and hopeful. I love these guys.
  Tomorrow I'll be back with some project talk. I haven't been writing cuz I was feeling sad and binging on Peaky Blinders (ladies... Cillian...) but I'm feeling oh so much better. When I was bummin we spent days in the back yard weeding and prepping the garlic bed and that also helped me feel a million times better! Now off to bed for me. xo m

Sunday, November 9, 2014

autumn apples and leaves and nesting in...

   There has been such a cozy, nesting spirit happening in our home this week. I am getting all the plans in place to begin school Jan. 5th and then with the crisp change in weather and arrival of so many apples, there is just so much to do. My gals Papa got 2 huge boxes of apples from friends who have a farm and he gave us most of them. Apple butter, applesauce, peeling/chopping/freezing and every kind of apple baking project has been going on in the kitchen. Then there's the 8 pounds of organic blueberries we were gifted... I cleaned out the freezer a few weeks back and it's so nice to have these fruits in there, waiting to be eaten up during the winter.
   All summer long our leisurely pace allowed for slower mornings. I had time to do a tarot reading nearly every day. Now with Fall in full swing, it seems we are always rushing off (to school!) in the mornings and my morning tarot time has been sadly lacking. Still, answers from the universe appear. Did you know that playing cards correspond directly with the minor arcana of the tarot?  I find these playing cards on occasion, on the street or face up on the ground at the thrift store. On Monday and Tuesday I found the 9 of hearts (9 of cups). Completion.
 Happiness and success, wildest dreams realized, a wish fulfilled. There are many wishes and wildest dreams afoot in my mind these days... I am working towards them, using the powers of softness and good, seeking the light and being of service to others... In the past my path to dream fulfillment was a messy and not entirely wholesome one. Now I am trying things differently and I believe that if I continue upon an honest and kind journey all my wishes will be granted.



 My dog is so tiny! 6 pounds. Rarely do we encounter smaller dogs. He gets cold too so I've been cutting the arms off sweaters to make him little sweaters.

 Dress of dreams! On a pretty gloomy, dirty day at  the thrift I found this magical raspberry pink dress hiding out at the bottom of a pile of trash. It made my week. I haven't worn it yet but maybe tomorrow night.
 Kitchen projects happening all the time. Using the oven makes this drafty little house extra warm. Granola and we had this amazing apple pancake TWICE for dinner last week. ohhhh so good. With potatoes and kale (and sauerkraut of course).
 
  I have been taking my lil dog on long walks. Pretty much anytime I am feeling a little upset or frustrated (which has been a few times this week) I go on a real long walk. It's good to clear my head and work thoughts out. Although I wish it wasn't streets and cars and construction I was passing by. I visualize a Seattle of long ago when I am strolling. One wish I have is of a rural setting for us, in the very near future. It's hard to be content in the now, which for us means city. I want country, as soon as possible. Patiently awaiting the country life and figuring out what exactly that means for us. 
  Now to put a sweater on Viggo and go meet my little lady at the farmers market. Happy weekend sweet friends! xo m

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

there is a light that never goes out...

  Learning how to let go (of love, with love...) is something I have taken so many years to begin cultivating. I am just now discovering what this unfamiliar process looks like to me. Unconditional love is something I am only able to practice with my children, my sister, my best friend (honestly, just my children). I have never experienced a romantic love that has remained, was steadfast and unchanged. My loves have always diminished or shattered. Sometimes the love morphed into something, at times, that was unbearable to sit in even for a moment. I know now that hostility, questioning, lack of support, are things I cannot abide in a relationship. The moment I feel my stomach painfully tighten, even a little (and that voice screams in my mind "Run!"), I can no longer ignore. Yes, everyone has off days or gets cranky, but when I feel a pattern of negativity is being established, and thoughts of my beloved no longer invite joy into my heart-but usher in the beginnings of a bitter dreadfulness... I am unable to be open, warm and in love. I retreat, out of self protection, and remove myself from the situation.

  I honestly don't know how to grieve a love lost. It's easier if the person was a real creep (as most of them were). But if it just wasn't working (maybe there were personality clashes/lifestyle differences) and it couldn't go on but no one was an insufferable monster... It's a little harder to stop the relationship. And how do you ever completely close the door? I am terribly fond of unrequited romance, this is not necessarily a good thing. I tend to mis-remember or mythologize my memories. Like it's never ever really truly over.
  My last romance broke (continues to break..) my heart. It was, for many years an unrequited teenage memory/fantasy and when we reconnected it was fireworks, electricity, wild abandon, instant intuitive everything. It seemed so meant to be and nearly flawless until, only a few months later the flaws appeared and everything began to dissolve and fall apart. I feel so heartsick. It keeps coming and unfolds daily. And thank you all for being so patient (friends and readers), I know I've been harping on and on about my romantic experience quite a lot lately... Some days it is so hard to stay away from this romance. In the past, in much darker, completely damned relationships, I always stayed and stayed and stayed, much to my detriment. Now I have to believe that my ability to walk away is a strength. I won't ignore the warning signs and wait until it's nearly impossible to disengage.
   It's Autumn and raining, endless cups of tea and chores and things demanding of my attention. I just want to crawl into bed watch sappy movies, eat chocolate covered shortbread and cry. Wait! I was excited about school yesterday. Yes, I am going back to school. I'm happy to realized I'm just a handful of classes away from my AA (and how I even accumulated any credits is a real feat cuz I was not functioning on a healthy plane 1995-2002) and then I can pursue my Psychology BA (at what school?) and figure out what kinda MA (yeah, where?) and get all sorts of diplomas etc... etc... and move to Berlin/Maine/Dublin/Nola/Magic Island and do cool things and help people figure their heads and hearts out... Today I crashed into lovesick sadness a little. It happens (to me a lot), I'm stressed. There are still many questions with school (waiting to hear about financial aid) and bills long over due and I am sad, not over things and really bummed by the way things turned out with my loved one... I keep thinking it over and over again and flirting with the sweet memories but I do remember what caused me to take a step back and I do think I am where I'm meant to be, right now. I do think I made the right decision. As painful as it is, I made the right choice for me.
   I am creating my life, everyday, with every action and I want it to be a kind, happy, beautiful and wondrous reality. xo m