A Rumble of Winter Thunder

I’ve met someone.

And I’m being very careful, cautious & quiet about this.

For now.

Like a slow rumble of winter thunder…

You hear it in the distance, but you can’t be sure if it’s really what you think, or if it’s something else. Rare in its occurrence, you strain to hear it again, wanting to make sure it’s real before nodding your head in agreement.

So I’m holding off before I speak anymore.

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Dim The Lights

And so we come once again to November, one of my least favored months of the year, containing my least favorite holiday.

Actually, I could do away with Thanksgiving altogether, and never miss it.

I think I’ve borne a deep-seated resentment towards this holiday since I was a child, to be honest, and I’ll tell you why.

As a kid, Thanksgiving meant having to dress up, and stay dressed up, All Damn Day. As a tomboy, this was one of the worst possible punishments you could inflict on me. I loathed wearing dresses, and having to wear one for a whole day… Not being able to climb trees with the cousins, or scurry up and down the cliff behind our house – hell – simply having to stay clean all day… It was hell.

And OK, the food thing was alright, but I was always a picky eater, so I pretty much stuck to turkey, mashed potatoes, stuffing & corn. No funky salads, no strange fruity jello things, nothing unidentifiable, thanks. Pumpkin pie for dessert, with plenty of whipped cream, & I was done.

And then… Ultimate boredom set in.

The menfolk took over the living room to watch football, while the women ruled the kitchen.

There was nowhere for a tomboy cursed to wearing a dress for the day to go!

Gah!

I usually ended up sitting in my room, playing records on my record player, wishing I could change into my ratty jeans & scuttle down the cliff to the freedom of the river below. 

No joy. The maternal police in the kitchen guarded the stairway & would’ve caught me.

As a grownup, I became resigned to the holiday – until my brother destroyed it a few years ago for me with his hate-filled email one year, & a ranting phone call another year.

I… Quite simply… HATE … Thanksgiving with pretty much every fiber of my being.

And yet – every year, I’m forced to partake in this much-loathed ritual, to make my parents happy.

*sigh* 

At least I don’t have to explain why Mom asks me to make the pumpkin pie every year anymore, since my sibling & his family moved away. 

I wish I could say no.

I wish I could be far away this year & not have to “do” Thanksgiving.

I’ve never really seen the true need for this holiday. A secular holiday “celebrating” something that ended up being basically a farce? Pilgrims & natives eating together in thanks? And then European settlers basically trying to destroy the natives in their greed for land and domination? 

Why are we giving thanks again?

I’m thankful most of the year for what I have, I don’t need this one freaking day to remind me to give thanks – thanks anyway.

And shitty things always seem to happen at this time of year, so I walk around, cringing, waiting for the other shoe to hit me on the back of the head.

I’d like to just fit a dimmer switch on November… Turn it down, gradually, a bit at a time…until that day rolls around… And I can just dim the lights & pretend to not be home?

Something I’ve Never Been

Well, I got my down-time, in an unexpected way.

I ended up with pneumonia, & had to stay home for a couple of days. 

Not exactly what I was going for, but then again, is it ever?

I have, however, had a lot of time to think. Which could be good or bad, considering who’s doing the thinking, since I tend to overthink every-fucking-thing. 

I’m tired of being alone all the time. I’m tired of my days consisting of nothing more than work, working out, & working on the book & house. 

And while I adore my Beloved Nephew, having my only real adult conversations be on the phone with someone hundreds of miles away…well, sometimes it lacks a little something.

Ok, I’ll come right out and say it. 

I want to date again. I want to feel desirable and wanted, and I want someone to look in my eyes and see me again. I want someone to hold my hand, to push my hair back behind my ear as they lean in for a kiss, and to cuddle with me on cold evenings.

I want to walk through the park in the brisk fall air, crunching the leaves beneath my boots & breathing in the autumn scents. I want to sit & listen to another person talk about their day, tell me all about it. 

I want to feel them lying next to me in bed, heartbeat under my hand…falling asleep together, and waking up the next day to tangled limbs & avoiding each other’s morning breath.

I want the disagreements, because they’re fucking normal, and to be able to work through them and talk them out like the grownups we are, even if we both have to throw mini hissy-fits first. 

I want the long days where it seems like nothing’s gone right, and the long nights that you never want to end. I want the passion and the friendship and the affection and the laughter and the tears, yes, even the tears, as long as we can overcome them. 

I want to be normal, and be like those couples I see out at restaurants & in stores, laughing with each other, telling inside jokes – I want to have inside jokes with someone again. 

I want all of these things, but then…my heart stutters, my eyes well up, & I remember that everyone leaves me.

I don’t get to have normal.

I don’t know why…

But it’s something I’ve never been.

You never write, You never call…

I haven’t written here for a while, I know. I could make excuses, I could apologize and squirm and fall to my internet knees…

But I won’t.

Yeah, I’ve had things to do. Yeah, I’ve been working on writing my book, which means I haven’t really had the urge to write here too. Yeah, blah, blah, blah…

Truth is? I haven’t really felt all that inspired to write here, either. I’ve been a little under the weather, & in a depression.

My head is kind of a dark place right now, & I haven’t really felt like sharing.

What I really want to do is curl up in the center of my bed, pull the covers up, & stay there for the next few days…but

There are bills to pay, & guess who earns the checks ’round here? 

So, every morning, instead of curling back into myself like I want to, I crawl out into the world & do what I have to to survive.

I ain’t got time for this, I got shit to do.

But, I so badly want to stay in the dark…

In Between One Heartbeat

In between one heartbeat and the next, everything can change.

Las Vegas has taught us that.

The hurricanes that have been wreaking such devastation this year have taught us that.

All of the tragedies, the deaths of beloved musicians, actors, have taught us that.

I am not going to preach about gun laws, or about politics at all, because that’s not my way. 

What I’m going to say is this.

When my Youngerdaughter was born, she was as blue as a smurf, and lucky to take her first breath.

She came into this world with her umbilical cord wrapped around her neck twice, with a granny knot tied in it.

When she was a year & a half old, she fell from her crib & cracked her skull. Again, she was lucky to draw breath through the following night, & to survive.

In college, she survived a car wreck that the police don’t understand how she escaped with only a couple of small scrapes. The car was crushed, she was not.

She graduated from college magna cum laude.

Three times this young woman’s life hung in the balance, and could’ve swung either way. 

Everything could’ve changed – between one heartbeat and the next.

I cherish every breath she takes.

Just as I do for each of my children, & each member of my family, both blood & chosen.

I take nothing for granted.

And this is what I say to everyone out there, lighting up the media, both news and social.  Instead of screaming opinions (which, let’s be honest, you can’t change someone’s opinion when they’re really set on it, anyway), try to be a part of the change you wish to see.

Here is what I am going to do:

Pray for Peace

Give help where I can, to those I am able.

Vote my conscience

Hope for the best

Work for the rest

Love Hard

Take nothing for granted

Cherish the heartbeats.

Spices and Wind

Autumn is here.

I know, the Autumnal Equinox is still technically 2 days away…but, this happened today:

I was driving home, down 16th, which is a 40mph street, & had my window half open to catch the breeze, when this happy, little wanderer floated in and landed on the back of my hand.

I picked it up, & held it like a touchstone all the way home, reveling in the leathery feel of the leaf’s skin, the crisp, sharpened edges, the slightly cupped curl it created as it rested between my fingers.

I love fall…

I love the way the air feels like a lover’s caress on my skin, gentle & warm most of the time, but with the occasional swipe of a rough briskness.

I love how rich all the colors seem to get. The deep golds, the burnt oranges, the bloody reds, the almost-black purples. Even the crunchy brown after the leaves have fallen, & lie dead on the lawn, waiting for the rake to sweep them into piles for bagging. 

I love the smells that permeate the air, the sharp smell of burning fireplaces in the evening, the fresh earthy smell of wet dirt after it rains, and the air is cold enough to bite, so you have to bundle into a hoodie, the spicy scent of the fall’s leaves as I crunch through them when out on a walk. 
Those leaves remind me of my favorite flowers – carnations, & how they smell like spices & sex to me. Such an innocuous, and seemingly innocent little flower, so normal and unassuming, and yet they entice me to stick my nose deep into them, dragging the scent within my lungs from their lacy petals, so reminiscent of lingerie it almost seems indecent to have them just sitting out in the open where everyone can see. 

Next time you get around a bouquet of carnations…close your eyes, don’t look at their plain-jane faces…close your eyes & use your other senses. Get your nose up close, smell the sweet cloves, the spicy wash of something almost exotic, run your fingertips over the petals, feel the lace edges…and you’ll see what I mean. It can be a sensual rush.

And to me, carnations are such an Autumn type of flower because of that spiciness…reminding me of the leaves as they fling themselves from their trees. 

Wild little things with plain faces and beauty inside, if only you look… throwing themselves out into the world, searching for a place to land…