How and when to be still.

The last several months have been a repeated exercise in learning – again – to sit with uncomfortable feelings and identifying if or when to take action on them.
 
On the one hand… back in June, I left a job I enjoyed, working with people I loved, to try something new. Mind you, there were a lot of underlying factors in that decision; some things were never going to change about that place, and I finally decided I’d had enough. I sat in the discomfort until I couldn’t any longer, and I made a move.

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In Celebration of a Year.

This Sunday a year ago (9/3/17), I got to experience what sounds like a big cliche by marrying my best friend, Carter. But it’s true; he is one of my very best friends.
 
To spend almost 30 years dating, hoping, searching, trying, failing, and trying again… to have almost given up and in to the belief that maybe I just wasn’t cut out for relationships, maybe I was trying too hard or doing something wrong and should just find a way to be okay on my own…
 
I mean, I did that. I got to a place where I was okay on my own. Lonely sometimes, wistful for the idea of partnership, but ultimately, okay.
 
And then this person – MY person – came along and showed me what it’s supposed to look like, feel like, and BE like when you’re perfectly paired and loved. Suddenly, it all made sense – what was missing all those years that I was trying so hard to find or make happen, but also, what profound love on equal footing and solid ground can be.
 
We always say to each other that we are not perfect, but we’re perfect for each other, and it’s true. To finally know what it means to be listened to, heard, supported, encouraged, adored, respected, admired, and loved; to be with someone where complete and total honesty isn’t just welcomed but expected and necessary; to show up even when it’s a challenge or when things don’t look the way you think they’re going to… it’s the best gift I’ve ever been given.
 
I think we’ve spent more time apart than together this past year, but even that is working out because it’s the work he loves to do, and I flew solo for so long, I’m doing just fine holding down the fort. It won’t be this way forever, but it’s okay and good for now.
 
So, to my husband who is on the road with 5FDP, I can’t wait to celebrate our first married year together when you’re home next week. And I’ll continue to celebrate every day we get to spend together, just by waking up grateful. That’s easy.
 
Your face is where I see forever, Carter Burns, and I sure do love you. ❤
 
———————————————————————
 
COMING BACK – Carol Bergé
 
Now / suddenly
to find this damn city
romantic, against all I know
of its anger, edges,
memories.
                 The good
because of you, now.
How it is true,
not to seek but to
let it, or having given up
that you would ever exist,
               to find you.
We enter this city
in a great light
                        all our own.

Saudade, where the parentheticals bring the truth.

As I was taking a shower this morning – finally, after realizing I’d “wasted” an hour online, accomplishing nothing but certainly feeling like I should have – I accidentally began mentally listing all the things I (think I) miss. And about halfway through, I realized I needed to be honest about all of it. Did I really miss it? Was what I thought I missed actually the part I missed, or was there something deeper to it? Am I just uncomfortable and so my brain is throwing past ideas and thoughts and maybe some real experiences but also some imagined/romanticized things out there for me to latch onto as a means of finding comfort by doing what I’ve always done, which is to say, run away or at least think about it a lot?Read More »

A week of humility, ignorance, and gratitude for both.

It’s been an enlightening week.

I haven’t logged in to social media of any kind – Twitter, FB, Instagram, Snapchat – since this past Sunday, and I’ve gotta say… I feel better. I’d been obsessively checking sites for weeks, wasting hours of free time and accomplishing nothing more than getting riled up, upset, anxious, or lonely and feeling left out, which only made me more inclined to keep logging in to try and feed whatever need wasn’t actually being met by doing what I was doing.

Insert “duh” here. Read More »

Where the lines get drawn (with privilege).

Every once in a while, I get caught up in thinking about – and being confused by – freedom of religion and what that should look like in the U.S. Specifically, the thing where people should be able to practice their religion however they choose, as indicated in the 1st Amendment:

First Amendment to the United States Constitution: 

Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.

But it’s not that simple. What if someone’s religion encourages them to believe homosexuality is abhorrent and unforgivable in the eyes of their god? What if someone’s religion tells them women are inferior and don’t deserve the same rights as men? What if a religion were formed specifically to persecute a particular race, or another particular religion, or to elevate one group over all others? Read More »

When opting for compassion and connection renders you complicit.

At what point do we go from trying to connect with each other, trying to have civil conversations for the sake of connection and compassion, to no longer suffering the fools of bigoted beliefs and dangerous, dehumanizing behaviors… compassion and understanding be damned?

(Caveat: At the risk of just dumping a whole lot of mess out here, I have a lot going on in my head and heart these days, thanks to our current administration and political climate and the horrors I keep seeing/reading about/etc. as well as what appears to be a rapid move towards authoritarianism and allowing for awful behaviors to become normalized; this is as good a place as any to sort it, attempt to make sense of it, or at least put it out there for feedback and course-correction in my own thought process.)

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Love is a Many Splintered Thing

I keep trying to define “love.”

(And of course, in the process, getting this song stuck in my head.)

Now that I find myself in what I know and trust to be a healthy, happy, mutually reciprocal kind of love and relationship, it dawned on me that maybe I never really knew what love was supposed to look like before. Maybe my idea of love was informed by movies, or TV, or my imagination, or how (and by/with whom) I was raised. Or, maybe love gets defined by each person individually, and that definition changes based on what’s available at the time? I don’t know. Read More »

Survival Tactics.

I started blogging/writing online close to 20 years ago now, I think. 17? 18? Something like that. I was introduced to Blogger by a co-worker; it wasn’t long after I’d moved to Minnesota, gotten (relatively) sober, and needed some kind of outlet. So I cranked up a site, called it “Clever Little Minx,” and started writing. A lot. I made some mistakes, of course; I wrote about people using their names, didn’t quite understand the whole privacy/discretion/OMG DON’T PUT THAT ONLINE thing… Read More »

Do you tell yourself the truth?

I’ve written before about how anxiety is a jerk and a liar. Depression is a liar. And the problem with those VERY REAL mental health disorders is that, often, it can be impossible to step far enough outside the experiencing of those issues to identify that’s what is happening, and that what those things are telling you isn’t true or real.

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