Spill

I went to a camping festival this past weekend and spent solid time with my friend, Alle, reacquainted myself with Jacqs (who I’d met four or five years ago, but lost track of), reconnected with Hawthorne (who I met last year, but couldn’t find on Facebook) and Jen, met Kells and April and fell head over heels in adore with them both.

It was pagan themed, and those are often fraught with sexual tension and “am I attractive enough even now at this age” and coupling and uncoupling. I generally have a ‘free pass to play’ at festivals (which is actually not uncommon among the pagani) and that was the case this year as well, but the truth is, I wasn’t into any of that. I liked knowing I *could* connect with someone if I felt it, but I really missed the spousal unit and kept thinking that if I could just add him to the already lovely equation I’d be perfectly content.

I stayed up ’till dawn every night, enjoying the fire and watching the lovely dancers do their usual mating gyrations. Peacocks and hens, every one. I felt transcendent. Apart from it. An observer who wished NOT to enter the fray. I felt like I was spilling benevolence all over everyone, an empathetic fountain, a walking benediction.

It was as though not ‘wanting any’ sent out a signal to the young stags on site. I was surrounded by complimentary attention from boys I could easily have given birth to. It was adorable, flattering, and completely hilarious, but I wasn’t interested. I just wanted to hang out with my girlfriends.

That felt *amazing*.

I went home feeling a little like the Queen Bee ~ full of the honey of friendship with beautiful women AND the thrill of having been pursued without being caught.

***

I’ve been home since late Sunday, and I’m down with my usual summer cold. Being a hermit the majority of the time means that as soon as I enter civilization, I get *something*. I’m hopped up on Dayquil and wishing I could crawl into bed with a heating pad, a hot cup of honeyed tea, and a good book (Pandora by Anne Rice, I think. Or something equally ‘purple’ and bloody and full of verbose exposition.)

***

Couch Day last Friday was *intense* and full of revelation. I left my couch person’s office tear soaked and seemingly fragile. Processing on the drive to the fest site took about three minutes, though, and then my strength rose up like a flame and licked the tears right off my face.

It’s going well.

***

Downton Abbey rocks, and the spousal unit and I are bonding over it.

And we’re good, he and I. We’re in the upswing portion of the cycle that is our relationship.

I’m content with that for now.

 

 

Whose Eyes

A few years ago, I used this domain for an ‘inspiring post’ type aggregation blog and I just realized this past week that some folks were still subscribed to the RSS feed I’d set up for it way back when.

Oops.

I had a moment of pure, unadulterated terror. OMG DOOM! I didn’t want these random people to know I was struggling or unhappy or said fuck a lot.

Then I got over it.

I’m not worried about who reads this anymore because LO! THIS IS MY TRUTH! And I figure if someone can’t take my truth, they know how to unsubscribe. Still, I deleted the old feed.

Couch Day last Friday was *intense* and we talked about my Momster and my own experience with mothering. There’s so much ugh and ick and oogie wrapped up in all that that by the time I rose up off the couch, I was a limp dish rag.

Some wisdom garnered: I do not mother like my mother did, and the proof is not only in the relationship I have with my children, but in the relationship I have with my tribe. I am neither enmeshed with nor do I feel antipathy towards my skin babies, my fur babies, or my tribe. I nurture, not out of a need for self-aggrandizement or ego strokes, but because I *love the fucking crap* out the people in my life. I don’t subjugate my own needs for others, but neither do I ignore the needs of others when I *can* have a positive impact.

I walk a good line between over-delivery and selfish disregard both in my personal life and in my business life.

My mother (and the voice in my head that pretends to be her) doesn’t need me to make excuses for her anymore. I am permitted to feel the righteous anger I feel towards her while also taking responsibility for my own happiness.

I’m done shoving anger down in favour of pretending to empathize with the woman. I do not truly empathize. I thought I did, but I can’t fathom, can’t begin to understand, what she called ‘parenting’, and it has come to my attention that I don’t have to ~ that it is a testament to the mothering I have been capable of and offered that I don’t get it, can’t condone it, do not excuse it…

***

When last we typed, I ranted about the spousal unit and how I’m hurtling through space towards surrender. There is so much peace in it for me right now. I’ve reeled in all the little energetic tendrils of investment and energy and I’m tending my own life, my own stuff for once. He’s tending his. We’re okay, and whatever comes, comes.

I just don’t want to focus on him unduly anymore. Let him do him. Let me do me. We’ll make it or we won’t, but if we don’t I will know it wasn’t from my own lack of trying. Nine years of in the trenches effort is plenty enough to let me disengage without guilt.

Besides. The weirdness of it all is the less I try, the less I reach, the less I push, the more I surrender to what is instead of wishing things were somehow better/different, the more at peace I feel, and the less anxious I am.

And the easier I am to get along with.

Go figure.

***

There is a vase full of blooming roses on my altar, courtesy of the spouse, that arrived the day after I declared “FUCK IT”.

The universe is laughing at me.

But I’m laughing along.

***

I am content at the moment. I am holding that close.

The Most Powerful Prayer

I wrote this on my Facebook timeline this morning at 1:15 a.m.

Core desired feelings: Wanted. Valued. Loved. Desired. Empowered.

True.

I wanted to continue with ‘and I feel none of those things…’ but I didn’t want to vague book and I didn’t want to alarm anyone.

I’ve been crying all night.

It was an off-handed comment (I hope) that did it. I say “I hope” because if it wasn’t off-handed, then it was really thoughtless and cruel.

Either way, my night sucked moose cock.

Hello? My let’s make that my decade.

***

My spousal unit is having a – well, a something. Midlife crisis, maybe, though if I’m being honest (and that’s what I aim to do), he has been ambivalent about our relationship since it began back in 2004.

And I just don’t learn.

So, here we are again.

He needs space, and doesn’t take it, and doesn’t tell me that’s what he needs, and then he gets resentful, and his vibes are like daggers in my back, like an acid bath. He sucks the air out of the room with his vibes.

Eventually, he tells me the truth about needing space, but usually not until I am angry and hurt and fed up with walking on egg shells.

Then, more often than not, he tells me he doesn’t think we’re good for each other and he things we should break up.

And we fight, and I cry, and he rages because I am getting it all wrong, and I cry some more…

And really, all I want in the whole world is a) someone who would never, ever do that to me, ever and b) to love myself enough to never, ever LET anyone do that to me.

That/it being…

Well.

Falling out of love, acting like you’re out of love, and staying anyway.

***

I should leave him. I don’t feel loved, wanted, desired or empowered. I feel the opposite of all four.

And I want to gouge my fucking throat out when I hear the words “but I love him” leave my lips.

I want to grow a pair.

I want to be stronger than this, wiser than this, better than this.

But I’m not, so, as my Couch Person* says, I’m not ready. She also tells me when I’m ready I’ll know.

***

I used to believe in magic. Like, for real ~ I thought that saying the right words under the right phase of the moon with the right intention could somehow change things. I don’t believe that any more ~ haven’t for a long time. What I believe now is that I am ultimately responsible for my own happiness. I can choose things that move me toward my core desired feelings, or I can choose things that lead me away from them or get me stuck.

There are no victims here, even though I’d really, really prefer if I could whine about how hard done by I am and how unfair it all is and wait for my fairy godmother to show up in her pumpkin carriage, magic wand blazing…

It’s time (ya think?) I stopped believing in a relationship that has never really been anything but one long game of ‘just exactly how worthless and stupid can we make this woman feel before she will finally pack a bag and leave?’

And maybe that’s not fair. Maybe that’s not even a conscious thought in his head.

But he *knew* what he said tonight hurt me, and he saw me crying, and he went to bed to read a book.

So, yeah.

***

I was watching some random movie on The Movie Network tonight. Anthony Hopkins was sitting in an AA meeting telling the story of his encounter with a Jesuit priest with whom he had a love/hate relationship. He was a man who hated all the god stuff that AA is well known for, but despite that, he got broken down enough, finally, to ask the priest to tell him what the most powerful prayer was.

The priest responded. “Fuck it. Fuck it is the most powerful prayer.”

And I *totally got that*. Totally. It was like the heavens opened above my head, and insight poured down like summer rain.

The moment you say ‘fuck it’ is the moment you truly, utterly, finally surrender.

***

Fuck it.

(I really mean it this time.)

*Couch Person is my euphemism for my therapist.

I Am Here

I left the drugstore with a package of heat wraps for my shoulder, a box of super plus tampons, and a huge tube of Prep H. Is that poetic enough for you?

It’s been that kind of week. A week where I can’t sit because of what’s happening down below and I can’t lie down because of what’s happening up top, and what’s happening somewhere in the middle makes me want to curl up under a rock somewhere and die.

I’m not a wussy. I swear I’m not! I gave birth multiple times without drugs. But this is ridiculous. Truly. And with the amount of work I have to do right now, it is not only ridiculous, but highly unjust.

It is making me really fucking whiny.

I hate being whiny.

Anyway.

***

Between 1999 and 2006,  I wrote multiple times a day. Three or four depending on the level of drama I was having.

Most days were fraught with drama because my whole life back then revolved coupling and uncoupling and grieving endings and forging new beginnings. I fell into and out of places that felt like home for a long, long time before finally putting own roots in this little house I’ve lived in for almost ten years now with the same guy.

There’s so much I’m skipping, skimming, whitewashing, but that’s okay. This is about the truth that I wrote reams and reams and reams all those years, and for years, I thought of myself as a writer. And then I stopped writing.

See, I used to be a poet. A really dedicated, disciplined poet who might have some day been pretty good had she kept it up, but in the face of ALL THAT TRANSPIRED, all that stuff that I’m skimming and skipping and whitewashing that’s just too horrible & unbelievable to recount but includes meth addiction (not mine), spousal abuse (yup, mine), an abduction (not alien), depression, suicide (not mine), death (obviously, not mine), I couldn’t write anymore. I found my own life impossible to believe anymore. I didn’t want to record it. It was madness. I didn’t want to mine it for truth or beauty. I’d lost hope.

Instead of writing, I drank a lot. I hunkered down. I cried so often, it changed the planes of my face. I squeaked by. I took up knitting for a while, and I horded yarn ~ bought skein after skein, and knit socks and shawls and felt like I might be a capital K knitter. And then I had eye surgery for a retinal detachment. So I knit less and less because I couldn’t see well enough to do the kind of knitting I liked (lace), and I tried beading, which was equally horde friendly.

I got through. I survived. I still couldn’t write, but I could stay busy.

Then things eased up, little bit by little bit. Kids grew up and moved out. They became visitors instead of permanent residents. I found myself with time on my hands. Time to wonder what I really wanted. Time to mourn the loss of my dream of one day being a capital W Writer. I took up morning pages again. I couldn’t keep up with them, but I kept trying. And eventually, in all my seeking like a hungry baby bird for *something* to replace writing, I discovered art journaling and that’s what I’ve been doing since 2009. Making art. Learning about art. Throwing my whole life into art.

I miss writing.

***

These days, most of what I write is course content (I’m an on line art journaling teacher) or blog posts that skim the surface of my life so as not to overwhelm or offend my clientele with posts about my need for Prep H or my sex life or my roller-coaster ride of a marriage.

I still can’t write poetry to save my life, but I feel it bubbling under the surface. I can barely write a blog post without checking my email fifteen times in case someone I teach needs me or wants me or bought something or needs to be let into a classroom…

But, I carved this space out so I’m determined to use it, even if only to tell you where I’ve been and do a little comparing and contrasting with where I am now.

I am here, now.

There are signs and symptoms that I am getting older. There are tubes of Prep H and heat wraps and weird hairs growing in weird places, and lines appearing around my eyes and mouth every minute of every day.

But I am here.

A Wander

Today, after spending a tear-soaked hour on The Couch*, I wandered.

I’d forgotten how much I loved it, and though the weather was gray and the air was heavy with threatening rain I felt myself slipping back into my own skin again.

It’s like riding a bike, this coming back to center thing I’m attempting. It’s like launching headlong into cool clear water after years of thinking you forgot how to swim.

I’m choosing, for today, this quiet. My own company. A pulling in of energetic tendrils from everything happening out there so that I can hear my own heart beat, my own wisdom rise up from the depths I’ve been skimming.

060113.4

I looked up into this face, and I felt a mother’s love.

This monument rests in the middle of our local cemetery. I know this face like I know the back of my hand because I’ve photographed it a hundred times. Something about her draws me to her every time I’m there.

Someone completely unknown to me rests in the grave beneath her. A name is carved  in the stone pedestal upon which she rests. I couldn’t tell you what it is despite running my fingers over it every time I pass her by.

She has nothing to do with me, and yet I felt a wave of love come over me from her, rushing me, rushing into me.

Now, I know enough about my own brainmeats to know that what was really happening was that I was having a surge of self-empathy, and I had projected that surge into that face. I’m not delusional and I know what’s real and true.

But there’s also capital R Real and capital T True. The poet in me wants to believe that all the attention I’ve lavished on this monument has infused her with magics. The poet in me believes that I have polished life into her with my hands and eyes.

The poet in me loves her and knows beyond a shadow of a doubt that she loves me back.

She is my own stone Velveteen Rabbit.

***

This is what happens when I wander.

***

The skin I’m in needs feets on ground, rambling perambulation, eyes full of light and life and something other than these four walls.

061301.6

Grounded. Toes, curling. Dew soaked.

I remembered today, and I felt a longing rise for more of it. More time, more quiet, more me, please.

Will I make it so?

060113.3

More often than not, I fail to remember. I fail to venture out at all, to give myself the gift of a cup of hours to sip at in silence and wonder. I deprive myself of the simplest, most basic right of my own presence in the present moment.

I want to find home.

060113.6

I want to know home like trees know roots, to know love as patient as trees, to be certain as branches are of sky.

I’m wandering there.

***

*The Couch is my euphemism for therapy.

A Beginning Of Sorts

I wrote this in 2001, and most of it is still true.

methen

Me, 2001

I am…

Mommy, Witch, Poetess, Friend, Lover, Hedonist…in that order.

Everything else seems to branch off from those labels.

Of course there’s more…

I’m unstable. I’m a control freak. I’m a puter junkie, a coffee junkie, a nicotine junkie and a recovering pain junkie.

I have as great a capacity to hex as to heal.

I love too long, forgive too easily and tolerate too much….everyone but myself, that is. I am completely seduced by words. I will believe in a spoken promise long after it’s been broken.

I am a holistic receiver.

I am lupine.

I am a little girl masquerading as a grown up.

I am intensely passionate, sensual, sexual, creative,…

I am tepidly responsible, motivated, ambitious, practical.

I take self awareness,introspection, retrospection and analysis to a whole new level.

I cherish my pain, my tears, my grief as equally as I cherish my joy, my laughter, my memories.

I’m moody. I’m quick to judge. I’m slow to burn.

Silence has always been the way to wound me.

I have had too many children with no sense of responsibility and those parenting chickens are coming home to roost. I was not raised myself, but thrown to the wolves and somehow, against grave odds I survived where my own beloved sister did not.

As a child, I endured every form of abuse on the books…sexual, emotional, physical,  neglect…you name it, I survived it. In my adult life, I endured spousal abuse, rape, ‘abandonment’, therapy, self help groups, the suicide of my sister, the break up of a marriage, finding and losing my first love, and a myriad of other made for t.v type circumstances.

I used to call myself a survivor. I fell right in line with Oprah on that score. I think that was healthy when I was struggling to heal. Now, I am a thriver…a woman who went through a lot throughout her life and came out the other side relatively intact.

I don’t believe that normal is necessarily a good thing. I am not normal. Most normal people find me a little much to wrap their heads around. I tend, therefore, not to appeal to them very much, which is okay because I’m not terribly taken with them either.

I am not a people person, but my friends would argue with me on that. I don’t like crowds and have to force myself to leave the house. I don’t seem to be forcing anything but that’s because I’m an inordinately proud woman and refuse to be pitied. It’s not exactly a phobia, but it’s damn close.

People frighten me. I’ve seen what they are capable of. Even he one’s that look normal. Even the ones that look nice.

My fear has rendered me an intensely lonely person.

I was born with the gift of faith. I have always believed in God, and know Her to be something other than the imposing figure everyone else seemed to be talking about and supplicating to. I am a mystic, but I love the Christ myth. Spirituality is something I try to live…it’s something that upholds me.
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Hope has been the only thing preventing me from putting a gun in my mouth.

There have been times when I have desperately prayed for the death of hope.

I have no moral code beyond “Harm None.” Think that’s too easy?? You try living it.

I love music.
I love art.
I love poetry.

I love red wine, Celtic knotwork, Opium perfume, coffee, heavily sugared and laced with cream, beef…bloody, Anne Rice, Richard Bach, the idea of a trip to New Orleans, autumn, Ireland, the Maritime provinces, cotton, silk, seafood, ethnic food, ethnic music, folklore, mangoes, gin, single malt scotch, dark beer, clothes that don’t bind, the color green, beautiful bedrooms, fireplaces, the ocean, self portrait photography, web design, falling in love, and pleasure in all it’s glorious forms,

I’m working extremely hard at loving myself.

I am the blessed recipient of your vision, your faith, your eyes, witnessing my journey, your voice, heard through phone calls, emails, private messages, your ears, that listen into the wee hours of the night, your touch, your perception, your honesty, your presence, your gentle (and not so gentle) criticism, your greetings cards, your encouragement, and support.

As a benefactor of all these things, I am grateful.

In all the years that I’ve been peeling back the layers, I have finally learned how to speak with my own voice…

And this is where I’ll use that voice the most.

Welcome to my world.