Tuesday, February 7, 2017

Modeling For My Sons

I'm going to be honest. I like it when my sons see me upset. Why? Because then they see me get over it. They see me become calm, kind, and even joyful again. I can be so very angry. I express it, sometimes vehemently. And then I let it go. I can be sobbing like somebody just died. Half an hour later I'm hugging and kissing them and my sense of humor has returned. I always explain why I'm feeling what I'm feeling, and I apologize if needed, but then the past is in the past and it's time to move on. Grudges, pining, and ruminating are a waste of energy. Forgiving, letting go, and trusting: those take far less energy and result in so much peace and happiness. I hope that's what my sons see in me, and they grow up to be men who can feel their feelings fully, and then let them go.

Thursday, February 2, 2017

Vigilance

I post a lot about what's happening in our nation and our world right now, both on Facebook and Twitter. There are those who say that people like me need to give it a break, tone it down, take time out and for triviality. "We all need a break from the politics." "I care. Just because I don't want to focus on it doesn't mean I don't care." I understand that. You care. That's great. But caring doesn't change anything. Neither do anger, sadness, and wishing it weren't so.

I choose to focus my mental energy on the politics and problems of our nation because I want to be part of the change. I don't want to just care. This fight is too important to put aside for trivial things. I need to stay informed and I need to share that information with others. Right now, at this time in our country's history, Facebook and Twitter aren't as much social networks for me as they are social JUSTICE networks for me: a place to connect with others who are working to protect the human rights of ALL of the citizens of our nation and world. I don't do this to preach, proselytize, guilt trip, or cause conflict. I do it because I believe I have power and I need to use it to fight injustice. I choose to remain focused. I choose to remain vigilant. I will not lay my burden down.

Sunday, January 22, 2017

Silence

We march, we protest, we speak out on social media and in our lives because if we stay silent nothing will change. If we stay silent we are guilty: guilty of prejudice, of discrimination, of misogyny, of hatred, of indifference to the suffering of the poor and the disadvantaged. We CANNOT be silent. We CANNOT be complacent. There is too much at stake.



Hello darkness, my old friend
I've come to talk with you again
Because a vision softly creeping
Left its seeds while I was sleeping
And the vision that was planted in my brain
Still remains
Within the sound of silence

In restless dreams I walked alone
Narrow streets of cobblestone
‘Neath the halo of a streetlamp
I turned my collar to the cold and damp
When my eyes were stabbed by the flash of a neon light
That split the night
And touched the sound of silence

And in the naked light I saw
Ten thousand people, maybe more
People talking without speaking
People hearing without listening
People writing songs that voices never share
No one dare
Disturb the sound of silence

“Fools” said I, “You do not know
Silence like a cancer grows
Hear my words that I might teach you
Take my arms that I might reach you”
But my words like silent raindrops fell
And echoed in the wells of silence

And the people bowed and prayed
To the neon god they made
And the sign flashed out its warning
In the words that it was forming
And the sign said “The words of the prophets
Are written on the subway walls
And tenement halls
And whispered in the sounds of silence

Saturday, January 21, 2017

Paper and Ink

So, I'm sitting here having a freak-out about money and I decide to meditate for a minute to ground myself and calm down (DBT skills for the win). I come out of my little meditation to hear Tracey Chapman on Pandora singing "Money's only paper and ink. Money's only paper and ink." Yes, womyn! Next song that comes on? My favorite, favorite, FAVORITE go-to song when I'm stressed: "Closer to Fine" by the Indigo Girls. Does the Universe know what I need, or what? I freakin love music.

Wednesday, September 23, 2015

Falling

Fall is a hard time for me. Some falls are worse than others. This is one of those falls. It usually starts in August and stretches until after Thanksgiving (when I will finally allow myself to listen to Christmas music, which begins to make me feel better). I'm irritable, I'm moody, I'm impulsive, I'm weepy. I've walked out on a really good, long-term job, ended a marriage, and made other huge, life-changing, impulsive decisions in the fall.

Fall used to be my favorite season. I looked forward to it with anticipation. I used to hate summer! Now I don't want summer to end. Please, give me the hot weather, the pool, the sunshine, the ocean, the fire pit, the s'mores, the fresh peaches. I don't mind sweating anymore (that's what the water is for, am I right?!!).

So, here's the thing I was just thinking as I watched the "First Day of Fall 2015" Google doodle: I need to make a list of all the things I love about fall and try to focus on enjoying those. Maybe that will help me over this emotional hump, nay, mountain, that is my Autumnal Mood Disorder (yeah, I just made that up. It's not in the DSM??). So here goes:

Squash and gourds - I love the colors, especially the variegated ones in all the odd shapes, and the ones that you shake and can hear the dry seeds rattling around inside.

Changing leaves - Although it's really hard to see all the green go (green is great for serotonin levels, you know), the vibrant reds and oranges are really beautiful, especially in the sunshine. I can remember my dad taking us on drives in the fall just to enjoy the beauty of the change (note to self: take kids on long drive . . . um, maybe).

Sweatshirts and sweaters - Cozy and comfy; what more do I need to say?

Chilly air - Believe it or not, summer lover that I've become, I do love the crisp fall air. One, because I can wear all those cozy sweatshirts and sweaters. Also because I love sleeping with the windows open and the blankets piled high. I do not sleep well in the summer unless the air conditioning is blasting, which I have tree-hugging girl guilt about. So, sleep without guilt is a bonus.

Long walks - These have become more short walks in recent years with my illness, but I still love them, especially with my boys. The leaves and the air and the ground beneath my feet: it's free therapy brought to me by Mother Nature.

Food - Now is the time of year when all the best of the locally grown come together. We can still get fresh tomatoes, cucumbers, and summer squash. Apple picking season has begun, and my favorite winter squashes are now ripe on the vine. It's time for big pots of chili and soup, cool enough for roasting root vegetables and squash, but still warm enough to grill.

Okay. I've now added to my arsenal of defense against the dark fall tools. I hope those of you who struggle with the change in seasons are finding ways to cope. All you pumpkin spice everything lovers out there, please remember that it's a hard time of year for many people. Your understanding and patience is mucho appreciated. Fall lovers and fall dreaders alike, feel free to share your favorite things about fall in the comments below (as long as it's not a Starbucks pumpkin spice latte - I'll edit that crap out!).

Take care, stay positive, be well! xoxo

Tuesday, September 15, 2015

Mike and I were talking about our favorite veggie dip. Spencer heard us and said "Dill dip. Dill dip. Dildo dip!" Oh my god I laughed! "Where'd you hear that word, Spencer? Do you know what it means?" "I don't know. I think it's a Pokémon." "Well, it has another meaning. If you want to know I can explain it." "No, I'm pretty sure it's a Pokémon. And it's like the lamest Pokémon ever."

Wednesday, August 19, 2015

Oh my god, the language coming out of Alex lately is amazing! I left the kitchen and came back to see him sitting in a different seat. Without prompting he said "I'm sitting over here because the other seat is wet." I went over and felt the chair and said "It's not wet, Alex." He said "No, the table next to the seat is wet." Yes, there was water on the table. Wow. Just WOW.