Lunchtime Laughter

My Onlyson’s cat, Chloe, provided me with a much-welcomed dose of laughter today at lunch.

As I was preparing my lunch, our 2 cats came into the kitchen. They always seem to think that they have to eat when I do, so as I’m getting out my food & utensils, Chloe attempts to jump up on the counter where their food is. (Separate from my food counter, thanks)

I say “attempted”, because she failed, spectacularly. Here’s the set up:

Lidded garbage can sits in front of litter box, & both are next to the counter. Cat usually jumps from floor to garbage can, then to counter.

Cat fails to get all 4 paws on counter  at conclusion of second jump.

Cat scrabbles at counter, desperately holding on for feline life, even with front claws, cannot maintain grip.

Cat falls ass-first into litter box.

Human stands, watching, & general hilarity ensues.

The look of sheer horror on Chloe’s face as she slid closer & closer to falling completely was hilarious.

The face of utter disgust & humiliation on her face when her tush hit the litter (and the clumps kept within the box) was PRICELESS.

Immediate feline exit stage right.

Of course, a couple of minutes later, she thinks I’ve forgotten all about her debacle, so comes back to the kitchen to try again. This time she jumps directly from floor to counter, bypassing the offending garbage can she blames for her earlier failure.

I didn’t forget.  I just wanted a picture…

Now she hates me, too.

Witnesses die in their sleep all the time, right?

Anyone want a humiliated cat?

It’s Hard to Watch Others be Happy, When I am Not

I love my friends, my family. I want the best for them, always. And I want them to live, fulfilled, prosperous, happy, loved, content.  I want them to attain all their goals, and to revel in their successes. I want to celebrate, congratulate, them when they get what they’ve been seeking 

But, it is difficult to stand on the sidelines, when I know my own goals, my own successes, are so far down the line, they’re almost impossible to discern.

Watching friends be with their SO’s, holding hands, smiling in that particular way at each other, is painful, when I long for love, and am denied at the gate.

Being the “third wheel” has never been a particular passion of mine, so I sidle off, alone, to leave them to their joy in each other.

Watching them interact warmly & laughingly with their children is a knife in my heart, when my own are so far away, 2 geographically, & 1 emotionally.

I don’t begrudge my friends & family their joy. I smile and say all the right words to let them know that I am happy for their contentment.

But, it still pains me, deep in the night, after I’ve turned away from the joyous spectacle they present. 

I have my own, small, moments. A laughing phone call, a comfortable evening spent talking, bantered texts going back & forth.

But, I know it’s not the goal I seek. It’s temporary, fleeting, and transitory, based on another’s whim & momentary desire for companionship & shared experiences. I’m not allowed to delve deeper, to allow myself to feel anything more than friendship in the moment, because that’s not what’s wanted.

And it’s sad, knowing what could have been, but never will be, not down that road.  Because of old baggage, borne by the other, we will never travel that road together. Not in the direction I wish to go, or to the destination I someday wish to achieve.

So, I applaud my loved ones, both blood and chosen, because I truly do wish them all the best life has to offer.

But it’s not easy to watch, and not be…

Just a bit jealous.

If I Never See You Again…

If I never see you again, 

I want you to know, that I will go on.  There will be moments…moments of doubt, of nostalgia, of longing. But, I will move forward, as I always do. Without you. 

By your choice.

If I never see you again, I want you to know, that I want only the best for you because that’s who I am.  Unable to hold a grudge for long, I let go of the hurt and disappointment. But with that, I also let go of the feelings I had for you.

All of them.

Untethered, I simply wish to forge ahead, seeking a love that is wholly mine. One who will want the best for me, and who will walk beside me, rather than in front, or behind.  Someone who won’t wish me to sit on a pedestal, but will accept me, with all my flaws and gifts.  Someone who will see that I’m not perfect, and love me because of that.

Someone who will not compare me to others, or put me down with my whole gender, simply because he doesn’t wish to take the time to understand.

Someone who will talk to me, with me, and won’t shut me out. Someone who wishes to share his life with me, as he shares in mine.

If I never see you again, I want you to know, that because of you, I have a better understanding of what I want out of life, and out of love.

I will not settle, ever again, for less than what I want.  I will not simply accept the minimum of what’s offered…because I deserve more. 

I deserve better than being treated as though I were less than. 

If I never see you again…

It will no longer hurt.

Because you weren’t real. You were only memories.

And I am of the present…looking toward the future.

No more apologies, no more regrets. Those are of the past. 

And so are you.

Standing at the Crossroads, Waiting for ~

For a long time now, I have felt as though I’ve been in limbo.

Imagine a crossroads, dusty and forlorn, on a lonely stretch of deserted gravel road. A middle-aged, redheaded woman sits on a stack of boxes, staring off into space, absently tucking flyaway hairs behind her ears, and sighing at nothing in particular. The sun sits midway through the afternoon sky, warming her back, and she stands, wanders up to the dented stop sign, looks left, looks right, turns back & sits down again.

Me.

Waiting.

For what, you might ask?

Oh, for the fulfilment of a promise, for the chance to change her circumstances, for the liberation of knowing that she’s successfully raised the last of her children to an independent, adult stage of life, & she can make decisions now, solely based on what’s best for her, and no one else. 

I love my children.  I love that I was given the opportunity to raise them, to love them, to nurture their growth into responsible, independent adults.

But, every large decision I’ve made in my life since March 13, 1991, has been influenced heavily by “what’s best for the child/children”, not just for me.  

And for the last few years, I’ve felt as though there was this staticky, dusty place in the back of my brain, where that woman sits at the crossroads, waiting for the next stage. Waiting for “what comes next”.

Men have come and gone from my life, for whatever reasons they felt were valid at the time. Only 1 said he was in it for the long haul; but even he has failed to actually appear in person to begin this life he says he longs for. All the rest, whether they originally said they were “there for me” or were just in it for the moment, or nostalgia, or just wanted the temporary convenience of another warm body nearby, ended up walking away. 

I’m tired of being a “temporary fix”. I’m weary down to my bones of waiting for this elusive “luv” to show up. I’m not content, anymore, to be someone’s “right now”.

I want more. I want to go, get out, move and shake and rattle some cages. I want something to change.

And I want to stop being that woman at the crossroads, waiting for…

1 more year… Then…watch me.

Watch me fuck shit up; shake a few trees to see the residents fly out, screeching about being dislodged from their comfortable perches; watch me change my little corner of the world as I rise up from that stack of boxes, kick them into the ditch, and pick a direction to 

Just. Start. Walking.

Then. Watch me. As I walk away, & start my own life. 

As difficult as it will be to start over at the middle age of 47 (as I will be this time next year), I will do it. 

Because I’m tired of limbo.

Tired of waiting for change to swoop me up & deliver me someplace else.

Tired of being left by the side of the road when I’m no longer “convenient”.

Fuck that. 

It’s my turn.

Happy Thoughts…

Trying to remind myself of the good things that do happen, I decided to make mental notes of small, happy things.

1. My pumpkin patch is growing like mad! I have 1 that’s about the size of a baby’s head right now, & at least one more possible that’s the size of a kiwi…

2. I finally saw a monarch butterfly yesterday! I’ve been wondering where they were this year, with everything I’ve read about the troubles they’ve been having…and I saw one! It gave me a smile, and a happy memory of the kids & me taking care of one a few years ago, then releasing it into the park.

(Sneaky Pete from a few years ago when we released him)

3. I found some new series to watch on Netflix. The Shanarra Chronicles (already hooked on this one, & can’t wait for the next season to come out), Stranger Things, Black Mirror, Penny Dreadful (these last ones I haven’t started yet, so have no other comment).  I finished Gilmore Girls again, and I’m eagerly (rabidly) waiting for the new episodes to start in November!

4. I have a lone daisy growing wild in my yard.  It popped up out of nowhere, it’s small, & not perfect… But, it’s tough, and determined.

5. Onlyson started his senior year today. He is also turning 18 in 2 days! My youngest, my baby, will be registering with Selective Service in just a few days. Oy. Where did the time go? I want to do something nice for this big day, but he’ll be going to his dad’s this weekend, so I won’t see him till Sunday. 

I’m trying to be more mindful, more open to recognizing the happier things that happen from day to day. Some days, it’s easier than others.