Friday, March 27, 2009

Orphaned

28 years ago, I was orphaned. Technically speaking, it was only my father who died. But after the initial shock of that loss diminished, I realized that my mother was not really a mother.

My mother is a good person. She's bright and strong willed and capable. She has a wide range of interests and was always good for a conversation on art, theatre, music, literature. But she wasn't built for mothering, especially to me. You see, she was in her early 40s when she had me. Her youngest was in school and at last she had time for herself. And a new baby wasn't about to stop her from getting that.

Does my mother love me? Yes. But does my mother really know me? Understand me? Feel joy in my joy and pain in my pain? Is she unconditionally there for me? No, she isn't. And she never was. Had I been a different sort of person, perhaps this wouldn't matter. But I am wired up to feel deeply. To seek a connection to others. To need a connection to others.

I have spent most of my life thinking I'm weird for being wired up the way I am. But lately, I've begun to believe that I'm more human for knowing that connection and empathy are the things that make me human. My capacity to feel is my gift. And I am right to honor it completely. Some situations need empathy. Compassion and doing the right thing instead of the smart thing is what will get me through. And I believe it is what will get us all through.

Yesterday, I was challenged to be honest. To be honest about my pain. Honest about my loneliness. Honest about my fears. This isn't easy for me to do. Not easy for me to ask for others to care about me. But I need. I need to laugh and cry and love. Everyone I meet, everyone I know is a chance for me to love, to learn, to grow. And staying safe, alone, afraid, makes me lost and lonely.

I miss my daughter. I miss hearing her laugh and the way she yells at bad drivers and her lack of patience with idiots.

I miss my father. I miss his joy and passion and his unconditional unending love.

I miss myself. I miss my laugh and my joy and my passion. I want. I need. I feel.

Sunday, March 22, 2009

They called it a near miss

I started a writing class this week. It's online which means I can go to school in my pajamas. I always wanted to do that. :) And it means I can share my writing and get feedback from a wider audience than previously. The following is my first assignment. I had to take a phrase, write a narrative, with some dialogue and have a twist at the end. All this was to be written in 5 minutes and be about 300 words long. I think mine is about 330. I hope you like it.

They called it a near miss, but I called it Daddy. Playing in my bedroom, I heard his tires on the long, gravel driveway and my mind focused. Jumping up on the bed to see out the high window, I watched and watched for his car to reach the end of the driveway. Engine off, I jumped down and ran for the backdoor.
Racing through the kitchen, my mother, damp tendrils around her face, wiped her hands on her apron and called after me, "Don't jump on your father. He's had a hard day." But nothing could break my stride now. I hit the screen door open and turned right.
The porch ran the length of the house; no rail, a wide open platform four feet off the ground. Timing was everything. Too fast - I'd have to wait. Too slow - I'd wrap around his legs. But not today.
My feet hit the end of the porch and I jumped. "Daddy!" I flew the air, sun glinting off his glasses, wind in my hair, and just when I thought he might miss, his arms enfolded me.
"Uff." he grunted. "You've got to stop doing that. One day I won't be able to catch you."
"Oh, daddy. " I laughed and kissed his sunburned cheek. As I nuzzled down against his shoulder, I worried for just a moment. Why wouldn't Daddy want to catch me?

In the dark, arms grabbed me, a hand over my mouth, and as my head hit the ground and blackness descended, I jumped and called out, "Daddy!"

Thursday, March 5, 2009

What is this feeling?

There's something going on inside me. I don' t know what is happening and my inclination is to pretend it's nothing and just keep doing the same things I always do...in the same way I always have. But I'm smart enough to know this isn't really what my soul wants to do. I am being blessed with spiritual dis-ease. Time to shift my focus and pay attention. Those little stirrings are there for a reason. The people appearing and reappearing in my life and in my dreams do mean something.

How do I know this? Because I'm nearly 50 years old and I know when these little soul cries come upon me, it's important!! Because all the work I've been doing, all the study and reading, all the tears and pain, are preparing me for something big. I don' t know what it is. But I believe with all my heart that it is something that will shift me in a very important way.

And that's what scares me. That's what makes me want to stick my head in the sand.

And that's why I know it wouldn't make a bit of difference. My soul has been searching and crying and preparing for just this moment.

So, I'll clear my calendar. Do my self care. Get my sleep. And be ready for whatever it is whenever it shows up.