five years from now…/080816 (Everyday Inspiration, Day 20)

What will I be doing five years from now? As far as writing goes, I know I will still be writing because I’ve always written, but I don’t know if I’ll be writing as much or as often as I do now or if I will still be posting on my blog. I hope I do continue on with my blog, but I’ve abandoned blogs in the past and I’m not sure if I’ll continue my pattern. As far as life in general, I will be 31 going on 32 in five years, which is the age of one of my brothers currently. He and I are five years and one week apart. I often wonder if it was weird for him that seven days after his fifth birthday his mom went to the hospital and came home a few days later with a baby sister. I am sitting at the kitchen table of my oldest sister, I hope I will spend many more moments at this table during the next five years. I hope I will spend many hours during the next five years with my nephew who isn’t born yet, five years from now he will be 4 years old anticipating his fifth birthday, the same as my oldest son presently. Five years from now J will be nine years old and T will be seven years old. Five years from now I don’t even know where I might be living, whether I will still be single, if I’ll be teaching, if I’ll have a college degree, or if I’ll still be taking classes. But tonight, I’m not gonna worry about it. Let tomorrow worry about its own self.

Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about its own things. Sufficient for the day is its own trouble. -Matthew 6:34 NKJV

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Highlighting Myself (Everyday Inspiration, Day 19)

I am nearly thru with the Blogging U course “Writing: Finding Everyday Inspiration“, this will be the second to last post. The task for this day was supposed to be a collaboration post and I was thinking of one, had it in mind of how I was gonna do it, but it didn’t work out the way I wanted it too. An alternate task was to do a roundup and one of the ideas was to do it of your (my) best posts from the course, not sure if they were suggesting best as in which ones your (my) readers reacted to the most or best as in which you (I) liked best of your (my) own posts, but I’m gonna go ahead and do it of the ones that I liked best of my own. Click on the titles of the post to read each featured post.

  • To start off, I’m gonna say the one from Day 18, Prizes of Divorce, was very interesting to write, the task was called “A Series of Anecdotes” and I honestly had a hard time at first think of a theme for a collection of anecdotes, but then I was reflecting on how I have actual relationships with my siblings now and that the catalyst for the development of those relationships was my separation from my husband. In writing the post, I furthered my healing process. I still want my husband back and absolutely believe that him and I could be a great couple again, but I did not get the short end of the stick in this situation. My life continued on after the separation and has gone in really amazing directions and I have gained so much.
  • Day 10 was probably the most fun process-wise. The task was “Let the Scene Write Itself” and in response I wrote the post Let the Scene Write Its Self, I guess when I scribbled it down it made more sense to change “itself” to “its self”, not sure why my brain did it. I jotted notes down of what I saw at Starbucks, 20 minutes worth, and then I decided my notes read well enough to be the meat of the post without a rewrite.
  • The task for Day 8, Reinvent the Letter Format, turned into a bit of a therapy session for me. For my post, Letter, I wrote a letter to depression as if it were a person. It helped me work out some things I was going thru that day/week.
  • The task that really stretched me as a writer was Day 4’s “A Story in a Single Image.” I picked an image of a man in a church and wrote a thousand words, give or take. I sat down and told myself I was going to write a one thousand word story in one continuous session, without getting off-track. So I started typing and keeping an ey on the word count in the bottom right corner of my screen, keeping in mind that I had to have at least a partial resolution to the story by the time I hit 1,000. I wrapped it up at one thousand and five words, scanned thru to edit errors, and hit publish. At the time I did not intend to continue the story, but…
  • A later challenge, Day 13’s Play with Word Count, gave me the idea to write another part to the story, again as close to 1,000 words as I could, the result was a post called words 1006 thru 2008.
  • In the first task, I Write Because…, I explored my reasons for writing, I write because…. I value this post and have already reread it at times when I was doubting myself.

Prizes of Divorce (Everyday Inspiration, Day 18)

“All I got was the washer and dryer and the bed, and he won’t sleep in the bed, says it’s too weird.” It always bothers me every time she tells this story, but tonight more so, for two reasons. Reason one, she got that cool pots and pans hanger that they’re about to install in their kitchen. Reason two, she has custody of her children. Why does she focus so much on that stupid washer/dryer/bed bundle? They gave the bed to his teenage daughter. And the dryer is on the fritz. He hung a clothesline for her in the backyard.
——-
She was crazy. Lots of people tried to warn him. We still do not know what he saw in her. Took him over five years to leave. They didn’t have children together, only separately, but still he loved them all. I don’t think she ever loved anyone. She tried to lay claim to his farm and the truck he bought when his daughter was an infant, fifteen years ago. “I’m officially divorced,” he says with relief. But still she’s suing him: lost wages, a cow, the farm, and the truck still. Almost freedom, but still so far to go.
——-
He had been gone for nearly fifteen years when the judge granted my mother’s divorce. Five children, three now grown, who could now officially be the step-children to the man who had been raising them since 1984 and their littlest brother and littlest sister could now have married parents. But what good did it do her? I’ll let you know if I figure it out.
——-
Perhaps married in a drug-induced-haze, perhaps not, it didn’t last long and he went on to marry three more women. I don’t know the stories because my dad’s life is none of my business and I hate how he talks of all the fucked up stuff he’s done and laughs, as if it does not matter that he hurt so many people along the way. But when it comes to those who hurt him, we should all respect his right to hate them and treat us with bitterness and spite. If not for the demise of three marriages, the fourth would not have began. The legality of it was never necessary, but that they met was. In 1988 my dad died the day his daughter Melisa was murdered. His first biological daughter, birthed by his third wife. Born thirteen months later, I’ve only ever known this shell of a human we call Dad, sometimes I think it’s only to be nice.
——-
Two days after, I was sitting down crying, it was Easter. A sister sits next to me, I don’t remember if I had shared the story yet and I don’t remember who was holding my ten day old son, a sister sits next to me. “Do you wanna hear something cool?” I gave some sort of acknowledgement that I did. “I’m gonna have a baby!” She hadn’t told the brothers or Mom and Dad yet. I had the privilege of hearing the news first. It was the first step she took toward becoming my real sister, not just someone who shares some DNA with me. In turn, each of my siblings (well most of them, but MK is a story of her own) would reach out in an effort to distract me from my pain. It was all they knew how to do because they had no idea who I was. Months later at a family gathering, the oldest of my mother’s daughters says to my mother, “B is actually really funny.” Mom smiles, she’s known this for a while and I think she had been hoping her children would notice. It’s not that I couldn’t have formed bonds while still married; it’s that I thought I would never lose what I had, so I didn’t bother to have anything else in my life, well that was only the reason at first, later it was because I was too tired to care and too anxious to interact. MR was the first of them who I told the most painful chapters too; we were never close, but he’s always loved his baby sister and now he knows I’m human, not the angel some tried to pretend I was.

Me All Over (Everyday Inspiration, Day 17)

so cal love

If I were to draw a map of my life,
it would be vast and complicated.
It would include valleys, mountains,
small towns, beaches, lakes, oceans,
cities, deserts, freeways, dirt roads.
Off-ramps where we had sex,
parking lots where we fought.
Schools- the one we met at,
the ones I went to as a child,
the one I go to now and
the preschool
our firstborn is about to start.
Streets you parked on
when there was nowhere to go.
The driveway where I once flashed you,
now our encounters there are PG.
The dorm-rooms
where we became explorers
of the human body.
The mall where you left me
and things didn’t go as planned.
Santa Monica.
The carnival from March 20-14.
The big, abandoned, red hotel
that fascinated me.
Travel Lodge and Knight’s Inn
and America’s Best Value Inn
and the showers on Coronado beach.
Glenoaks Blvd and
West Hollywood.
The gas station where
I used student loan money.
2N10 (forest road)
or maybe it was 2N14,
heck, it might have been 2N17
or some other combination of numbers.
The hospital where our children were born
and the curb where you blew out two tires.
Las Vegas
and the spots we had car trouble.
Miller Park and Meadow too.
The airspace above this country
and a handful of airports.
You’re all over the map,
but not absolutely everywhere.

Wor(l)d Traveler (Everyday Inspiration, Day 16)

IMG_20160721_152847.jpg

A mother’s soul is complex and beautiful. A mother’s mind is scattered and loving. I want my children to know they were loved and cherished. To have the memory of a mother’s voice sung and words read and rhymed. I hope they will feel it was soup for the soul. This mother’s heart aches when she has a traveler’s soul and the love for a land she’s never been. But she wouldn’t dare leave while these children need her the same way they need water and food. She will stay for them because they’ve got memories like elephants and she wouldn’t want any bit of them to be sour. The youngest, his name has four letters; the oldest, his has five. When she speaks of them, she speaks of love.

Tolkien Wisdom (Everyday Inspiration, Day 15)

“Faithless is he that says farewell when the road darkens.”

— J.R.R. Tolkien, The Fellowship of the Ring

This quote hits me hard. I read The Fellowship of the Ring last year and this quote didn’t stick out to me enough that I remembered it, but now the quote makes me think of R, but then if I go deeper I think of myself, and I see that I said farewell long before he did. But I did it in an awful way, I left my body behind as a reminder to R of what he lost and he tried desperately to revive my heart. When someone wants to be dead, whether figuratively or literally, it takes something like a miracle to bring them back to life, and even then it’s an improbable outcome. When I dig deep and go all way down to the core of my being, I see that I am the only one that left, R fought up to the last and even after he let me go he continued to fight for my happiness and still to this day he puts me fairly high on his priority list. There is another Tolkien quote that I absolutely love:

“He that breaks a thing to find out what it is has left the path of wisdom.”

-Gandalf the Grey

Not sure which book this is even from, I didn’t write it next to the quote in my journal. But this quote makes me think of myself and what I did to R and our relationship, which is the sad side of it. On the brighter side of it, it is a reminder to never do the awful parts again.

Our First Day (Everyday Inspiration, Day 14)

I don’t remember the day,
only the night.
And even that isn’t clear,
just bits and pieces.

It was August twenty seventh,
two thousand eight.
My roommate was on the phone,
yours was sleeping with lights off.

You were barefoot,
wearing t-shirt and jeans
and fixing your guitar,
red electric, I think.

I had on cheap blue flip-flops
and Hello Kitty pajamas.
Was reading Catch-22
and talking of prostitution and warm bodies.

It was a Wednesday
and tomorrow my mom’s birthday.
There was Kyle
and he was reading Twilight.

I was eighteen,
you were sixteen.
I didn’t believe you,
think I asked to see your ID.

I had trouble pronouncing
your last name,
think you said most people do.
I told you about all my double letters.

There was Good Day Sunshine
and I thought you wrote it.
You looked at me funny,
you thought I was joking.

Kyle went to bed;
You and I stayed up.
It was my idea to go to the pool.
You thought to bring a towel, I didn’t.

I don’t remember everything,
like if we talked about stuff that mattered
or just stuff that didn’t.
Just remember the world spun.

words 1006 thru 2008 (Everyday Inspiration, Day 13)

(*Note: This is a continuation of a piece I wrote during any earlier task, a part 2 I guess. Read part 1,  titled a thousand words, give or take, to find out what has been told of the tale so far.)

as Tom unfolds the purple pages that had been tucked gently into the purple envelope so many years ago, memories of her begin to fill his head. it wasn’t as if he could ever forget her, but slowly he had chosen to push thoughts of her aside just so he would have the strength to breath.

the time she took a shower with him with her clothes still on because she was nervous about him seeing her. the time they went for a walk thru the city and she was wearing the yellow sweater with the butterflies, the one that hung off her shoulders, exposing her upper back, he told her he liked that top on her because he could see and touch her skin as they walked. when she used to walk him to his car as he left for work every morning. the four am mornings when he’d leave coffee in the machine for her as he headed off to work, she’d offer him a sleepy goodbye, he’d call later on his lunch break at eight, to check on her and just to hear her voice. the time they took Christmas card photos and laughed so hard that almost all of the photos turned out blurry, she was happy then.

as he falls back into reality, it hits him hard. he realizes she stopped laughing long before she left, he can’t think of the last smile he saw on her face, it had to have been weeks or maybe even months before. he looks down at the note, he realizes he had been clutching it tightly and had created wrinkles in the crisp purple pages, he smooths the papers and begins to read.

“my dearest Tom, when you think of me please do not be sad. if i had known how to stay, i would have. some people aren’t meant for this world though. most people go on and on about how selfish suicide is and you know what? i agree, suicide is damn selfish. but as a human being i was given the right to be selfish. i was not selfish in every choice i made, but in most i was. i don’t think i was meant to stay any longer than i did. everything happens exactly as it is supposed to. in the end everything is perfect. we all play are parts exactly as were meant to. when people talk of suicide, they say things like ‘why didn’t she tell us something was wrong?’ or ‘if only we had known, we could have helped him’. it’s as if the person was supposed to stick around just for the sake of other people, i don’t agree with this. to me, living simply because others want you to live doesn’t make much sense. i didn’t have it in me to be happy, something was flawed in my heart, something i didn’t know how to recover from. the only was for me to live was to die. as you read this i know i am with Jesus and that He has made my heart perfect. i don’t cry anymore. i am no longer empty. and i hope that you don’t cry for me, because i am perfect now, without sorrow and without darkness…”

Tom sets the note down for minute. he doesn’t feel any better, if anything he feels worse. he hates her more now, after he has read these words. how could she have been so damn selfish? how could she know that there was no chance of happiness for her on earth?

he picks the paper back up to finish reading. “the church you are sitting in, it is the closest thing to happiness that i found on earth. here i forgot to feel empty, here i forgot to mourn the life i would never live. i wanted to love you, but i was incapable of loving while i was down there. no matter how hard i tried. i am grateful for the moments you gave me that came close to joy. thank you for trying. love, Rachelle” Tom has tear-streaked cheeks now and his face is flushed red hot with anger. he wants to scream. he still doesn’t understand any of it. he gave her everything he had and it was never enough. he wonders if even tried to love him or if that was just a lie.

he walks over to the door that the priest closed some time earlier. he knocks. the priests invites him into his office.

“Tom, would you like to sit?” the priest motions to a chair opposite his own. Tom takes the seat.

“i don’t get it, Father.” Tom hesitates, “is that what i should call you?”

the priest seems to think before answering, “if you want to, but my given name is Robert, which ever you are comfortable with.”

“okay, Robert. i don’t understand why she came to this church, she wasn’t even Catholic.”

“she came for the windows. every wall of the sanctuary has windows, so no matter the time, during daylight hours sunlight pours in. she said it was the most sunshine she had every seen inside a building and it made her feel close to God, she said in this church full of sunlight she thought maybe she could learn to feel good things, learn to love. i thought she was getting somewhere with all that, but then she came one morning, tear-stained and empty. she left the note with me and said she knew you’d be here someday and to give it to you.”

“in the note Rachelle said she was incapable of loving, do you believe that is true?”

“no, i don’t. but Rachelle did believe it, and sometimes we hold onto our beliefs so tightly that they drown us and consume us and the thought of believing anything less is unbearable. Rachelle was lost, she found the only answers she knew how to while she was here. forgive her, she was not perfect, but tragically broken.”

Quotes from On the Road (Everyday Inspiration, Day 12)

So the task for Day 12 of Everyday Inspiration was Critique a Piece of Work and honestly I didn’t want to write a full-on critique, I’ve already learned that I’m not much of a book-reviewer and doing a write-up on a movie or a song didn’t sound appealing either, so I’ll calling this my post for the challenge.

A few weeks ago I started reading Jack Kerouac’s On the Road, tonight I am just pages from finishing it. It has been a pretty intense read. And my two year old now picks the book up off the coffee table and says “Jack Care-oh-wack” in his precious little voice, it’s pretty darn cute. Well anyways, I wanted to share a few of my favorite quotes from the book:

  • “Boys and girls in America have such a sad time together; sophistication demands that they submit to sex immediately without proper preliminary talk. Not courting talk- real straight talk about souls, for life is holy and every moment is precious.”
  • “What is that feeling when you’re driving away from people and they recede on the plain till you see their specks dispersing? -it’s the too-huge world vaulting us, and it’s good-by. But we lean forward to the next crazy venture beneath the skies.”
  • “Dean took out other pictures. I realized these were all the snapshots which our children would like look at someday with wonder, thinking their parents had lived smooth, well-ordered, stabilized-within-the-photo lives and got up in the morning to walk proudly on the sidewalks of life, never dreaming the raggedy madness and riot of our actual lives, or actual night, the hell of it, the senseless nightmare road. All of it inside endless and beginningless emptiness. Pitiful forms of ignorance.”

If we were having coffee… (Everyday Inspiration, Day 11)

If we were having coffee, you might notice
that I am distant. I feel lost.

If we were having coffee, I’d tell you
that I took a step towards ruining a friendship.

If we were having coffee, you’d see
that I really do want him to stick around.

If we were having coffee, I might tell you
how confused I sometimes feel.

If we were having coffee, I’d wonder
what you would say about my life.