Thursday, December 25, 2014

On Being Here

I want to write about how lovely today is, how terribly windy it was on my drive in, but how eerily clear the 10 was and how it made me almost forget how many hours I've spent on that road this year.
I want to tell you that after I leave work there is a family & dinner waiting for me and lovely heart-felt presents underneath a tree wrapped in a string of popcorn & cranberries.
I want to tell you that I'm not going to be lonely and that this was "one of the best years...ever!" and that "I can't wait for what's next!"
I want to tell you that I'm sorry our Christmas postcard is a little late this year but "don't worry! it should be arriving shortly"

You know that I can't.

Though today is still lovely, and the freeway was clear, there is no family dinner or tree or best year or postcard coming.  It's just how it is right now.

And while I keep encouraging myself, hopeful for the inevitable "it can only get betters" next year, I must confess that most days it leaves me feeling orphaned and drained, pulling myself up by my own bootstraps and reading inspirational quotes trying to desperately flounder at the surface of the metaphorical ocean of life.

I'm sorry these aren't the most positive feelings, especially on such a meaningful day.  They are honest though, so I guess there's that.

Tuesday, December 23, 2014


I want to spend less time worrying about the things I cannot control (which is most every thing) and more time being at peace/belonging to myself.

I want what's important to you to be important to me too.

These are not my resolutions.

Friday, December 19, 2014

On Want

I wanted to write about the nature of wanting and then I talked with a good friend last night about all different sorts of wants and decided I want to tell you about how most days I think I could be very happy on a ranch, running around with horses and dogs and maybe some cows or something.

I do not know why I think this.

Except for yes, mostly I do.  I like to think that I would be "good" at living the simple life.  Simple for me = less noise + more quiet + less electronic shit + more outdoors goodness.  I like to think that a big move, a change of scenery, a different pace equals simple.  I suppose it's not that easy, though, right?

When I reflect on my current state of affairs, sometimes this doesn't seem too far away.  A sense of an ending in this weird but achingly lovely city doesn't necessary seem imminent, but at the same time I can't rule it out entirely just yet.

I guess what I'm trying to say is that (you guessed it): I don't know.  Maybe the more I admit this the less terrifying it will become. Eh, probably not.

Friday, December 12, 2014

When the Rain Comes

The building I live in is old.  Also, there is a storm happening. (Right now!)  And I found myself tossing & turning in bed as the curtains flapped wildly against the screen, convincing myself I couldn't close the windows because I have never closed them since moving in and why would this morning be any different?

I will refrain from turning this into some sort of philosophical metaphor for old things and leaving things open or forcing them to close and just say this: I was able to shut the windows.

Everything was still okay.

Monday, December 8, 2014

On Not Knowing

One of the first things I will confess to you if we spend any amount of time together is that "mostly, I know that I do not know." Sure, I have my opinions and beliefs about why things work they way they do (or don't), but these are my opinions and if you want facts, maybe you should consult a book or Google or better yet go straight to the source (if/when possible).

I am also one of the more passive people you will meet and would go to great lengths to keep the peace versus actually addressing an issue I may have with someone. Chink in the armor? I suppose.

All that to say, the more people I meet, the more things I learn, the more I realize how little I know about my neighborhood, the city of Los Angeles, the Golden State, and I suppose life in general. It is a gentle, humbling reminder that I am a little piece of a great, big universe. "And that makes things right."

Even when it doesn't feel that way all the time.

Tuesday, December 2, 2014

On Maybes

I came across a truly lovely quote the other day, via Dallas Clayton's Instagram. (I wish there were another word for this, but alas I digress)

We reserve ceremonies for the definite. The "yes" and the "no," but there is much to be said for the potential of a brave and well-timed "maybe."

Let me tell you what I know about ceremonies and it will be short because I do not know much. I have attended some; been a part of a few and they are good and strange and formal and impermanent all at once. I have yet to be involved in a ceremony that honors the "maybes" of the world. I suppose I would be involved in a lot more if maybes were reason enough to celebrate.

In a few months I will be a part of a ceremony for the definite no. Perhaps if I were more excited about maybes I would be dealing with less of these formalities. Or not.

All I'm saying is I'm excited for more brave and well-timed maybes. For once.

But check back with me tomorrow.

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

On at Least Trying to Be

In the words of Hush Puppy: "I wanna be cohesive."

My painful realization of the day yesterday was this: I am obsessed with pursuing/being in a romantic relationship.

So...shit.  This self-awareness endeavor is no joke. 

Now what?

Thursday, November 20, 2014

On (More) Loneliness

I have been having dreams lately.  And I wake up in fear and sadness and relief.  And I drive to work and think about "what it all means" and "why am I here" and "when do I get to start feeling better again?"  And my heart aches to be known and understood and conversed with in a way it hasn't in far too long.

So where do I keep these little hurts?  What do I do when my mind starts racing and I see my life as it always has been which is for the most part unknown and not in my control?  How do I live well amidst feelings that convince me that things aren't going 'well,' and who knows when they will be?

I am a creature of habit and schedules and routine.  I am still learning how to trust the process, to sit with myself, to be 'ok' with that particular self, to cry.  In short: I AM FEELING ALL THE FEELINGS.  And most days this honesty feels like a swift punch to the gut and I am left to wonder how I became so vulnerable to emotional assault (too dramatic?) again.

I do not have answers to most things, but what I do know is this: Good things take time.  If you feel out of control in the morning like me, take some breaths, stand in a quiet corner & tell yourself you'll be okay, pray?, wait a few hours, see how you feel in the afternoon or even the next day.  Be wary of acting on emotions without any thought behind them.  Be gracious with yourself if you're like me and inevitably do respond out of fear and impulse some times.  There is always room for both.

Monday, November 17, 2014

On Benefitting from Doubt

Remember that time I said I wanted to be taken advantage of? Scratch that. I definitely do not want that to happen.

I do still want to be kind and am trying to practice this skill daily. (Things tend to get easier the more you do them, good or bad...take that for what it's worth I suppose.)  I also realize that life for me is filled with far fewer wild adventures and many more quiet ones: interacting with humans, being outside, exploring.

Maybe re-learning how to be me is enough this year.  Maybe next year I get to re-learn how to be with others. Or maybe not.  Maybe I don't have holiday plans for the first time in my life and this is both terrifying and mildly okay.  Maybe being okay with the 'unknown' is an awkwardly small step in the direction of a much larger desire to be gracious in the art of letting go.

Whatever that means.

Friday, November 14, 2014

On Trusting the Process

We (I) seem to spend so much time fighting/thrashing around/holding things too tightly in my white-knuckling grip that I forget to relax/ease in/believe good. This amorphous concept of "letting go" seems to make so much sense, but trying to actually apply it perplexes me 'so much.'

My little sister sent me this Story People last night:

It's aptly titled "Simple Truths."

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

On Night Hikes and Why Being Alone in the Dark with Your Dog Isn't Always a Bad Idea

Because someone new
Because I am afraid
Because I am not in control
Because I am tired
Because the dark
Because I am nervous for the unknown
Because sometimes the things I desire are very far away
Because I am still hopeful
Because I am not easily charmed
Because I fall too quickly
Because she is one of my best friends
Because I still want to adopt
Because "I see that I'm a little piece in a big, big universe. And that makes things right."

Also, cohesion.

Monday, November 10, 2014

On Loneliness and Others

I am not certain the last time I prayed. Except for yesterday, walking around the reservoir, dusty and hot, when I decided to talk.
I am quick to forget that mostly a prayer is a conversation. Yesterday was fairly one-sided, but I was speaking of others, so maybe that makes it more appropriate?

I think of many people on a daily basis, but only recently started making a focused effort on championing for their cause in the hopes that they are able to live into their truest selves. (what?) Don't worry, I still think of and about myself very much, but it's a good change of pace for my (mostly) selfish heart.

And how often I forget that I am not the only one trying my hardest on this earth!

Here is truth: I am terrified of being out of control. As of late, certain events surrounding my life and the lives of others have been wild in not always good ways. I wish so fervently to have these loose ends tied, stories packaged and wrapped, ready for the "grand reveal." (Please note, I do not know what the "grand reveal" is, only that I feel some sort of pressure to makes sure that things are ready when I do find out what it is.)

Here's to hope, grace & creating a heart that beats for more than just yours truly.

Tuesday, November 4, 2014

On Being Quick to Judge but Possibly Changing That

I am a ragamuffin.  I say this with humility, conviction and a slight dose of sarcasm.  I am proud of this self-diagnosis, proud of being disheveled, a little smug about being "not quite right." I like to think that I can relate to people, because I am not better than or trying to make anyone that way, either.

However (isn't there always one of these?), I find myself observing others whether in person or the online realm and making very quick and most likely incorrect assumptions about them.  Why do I do this?  Perhaps it is because sometimes I'm not so proud of being "not quite right."  Maybe I'm just tired or lonely or intentionally salty.  Maybe I want to be just like them, but don't feel that it's in line with being "me" and this is confusing and upsetting and a bit weird to process.  But this doesn't mean that it's okay or something I'm particularly proud of.  I guess it's just something I'm acknowledging, putting out into the universe and in some way being held accountable for feeling feelings and making incorrect assumptions.

Of all the things I don't know, what I do know is this: if I'm given the option to be right or to be kind (and most of the time there are always options), I want to choose kind.  Even if it means I get duped, taken advantage of or hurt.  Even if it means that people see me as a sitting duck and treat me accordingly. I want you to always have the benefit of the doubt.  I don't want to assume things about the charismatic speaker, or well-dressed ad rep (what is that even?) simply because I don't know what else to think.  I don't want to make judgments based on fear or anger or hurt.  I want you to have a chance to stand on your own too, not having to prove anything and maybe start figuring out what to do with the truest version of yourself.  (That's actually a lot less fluffy than it sounds.)

I assure you I am trying to do the same.

Thursday, October 30, 2014


The days are shorter than last month and in the mornings I wake up in coolness, my overhead fan circulating the night breeze that snuck in between wooden shades & light curtains. Soon it will be time to change my bedspread, to air out the soft down comforter, to let things breathe. Cotton shorts are exchanged for drawstring sweats and sometimes I fall asleep wearing fuzzy socks even though I will tell you this is not possible.

And it has been months since I have fallen into such a routine and sense of normalcy. And, oh, how I have looked forward to these shorter days, the quiet nights, the half-hearted conversations that end just as easily and quickly as they had begun.

"This too, is a gift."

Sunday, October 12, 2014

Little Beast

What started quickly:
Car ride
Adventures for ice cream unravelled

Could just as easily have ended:
"I had a nice time."
"Good night."

But I had other ideas and you didn't seem to mind -
Until it was just as easily
Too much
Too soon.

When we meet again: more friendly//less playful
Lapping the lake twice,
I don't even have to

Tuesday, October 7, 2014

The Slow Tail Wag

This is a post about my dog and what she teaches me about life. You have been warned.

 I like to think that Dragon mimicked Goose in what I will refer to as the "slow tail wag." The STW is different than a regular tail wag in that it is a constant. Apart from sleeping, the tail is in continuous motion, slowly waving back and forth. In terms of humanity, I like to think of the STW as someone who is content with their life. From the moment they wake up, to the time they lie down: all the minutes in between are lived well. There's something to be said about these kinds of people. (Well, there's probably a lot to be said about them) and I'm trying to think of someone in my life who has mastered the STW that doesn't have a tail.

I know that my life isn't the most exciting or adventure-filled, so I'm hoping the STW will be enough the majority of the time, or at least where I've been as of late. If you know any STW'ers, send em my way.

Friday, October 3, 2014

On Taking the Time and Growing Good and Other Painful Realizations

I had a rough week. Of course there are many reasons for this and if you really want to fight me on it I will not push back and say, "You don't understand!" Because, most likely, you do. And perhaps you've had a pretty rough week too. Let's commiserate. In the grand scheme of things, my week was not rough. But in my little world it was. And I am okay with that. And even though I am just learning how to feel feelings (both good + bad) and express them in appropriate ways, I have found myself overwhelmed with how sharply I am experiencing the aftermath of grief, loss, hurt & in some very strange alternate universe, a lingering fog layer of joy.

One thing I am knowing is this: it is okay to feel! I will not go off on a rant about how feeling hard things makes the good things feel "that much better," because that is not my truth. But I do believe that feeling hard things reminds me of my humanity and returns me to a place of humility that I am far too quick to avoid.

Things take time. Good things take time. I mean really, truely, deep down in my overly-sensitive, gentle heart I believe it. Physical time and all the other forms that time takes these days. It doesn't necessarily make things easier or make those not-so-nice feelings less painful, but it is a comfort. And I will not project into the future, because I have not been given that and I am trying to rest in the every day, but people keep telling me that "good things will come," or "things can only get better!" I know they mean well, but sometimes this cheapens the experience of today. Like, this is happening right now! Enjoy it! (Or hate it if it sucks) But please don't forget to be present. People are worth your time + attention + investment.

Be good to them.

Monday, September 29, 2014

"Good things take time."

Sunday, July 13, 2014

Things I Wish Would Happen But Will Most Likely Not Be Today, Etc.

Though I hate to acknowledge/these things take time/They cannot be rushed/or fast-forwarded/or ambushed into action/(which is what I'd prefer they do)/Perhaps for now we can sit/Walk the lake/Hope for good things for people who are not ourselves/And maybe "3rd times the charm,"/or 4th/or 5th/or maybe no charms/Just a peace and hope for what is to come/But still trying to be okay with the quiet,/the sadness,/the humility of solitude.

Thursday, July 10, 2014

more little things

This didn't leave me with much. Sometimes we don't know what we want until we don't get it. It's like meeting someone for the first time after hearing their voice on the phone--before you met them you'd have said you had no particular image of them; afterward, you inevitably say you imagined them looking different. - Sloane Crosley

Wednesday, April 30, 2014


I am hesitant to say how I feel about all these things because they are hard and true and real, but have already hurt too much. The gentle truth is that these things happen. Relationships fail. Yes, even this one. Even the best of intentions and most constant of pairings. If we are unfaithful, He remains faithful, for He cannot deny Himself. & life goes on.

Sunday, April 6, 2014

Diving into the Wreck

First having read the book of myths, and loaded the camera, and checked the edge of the knife-blade, I put on the body-armor of black rubber the absurd flippers the grave and awkward mask. I am having to do this not like Cousteau with his assiduous team aboard the sun-flooded schooner but here alone. There is a ladder. The ladder is always there hanging innocently close to the side of the schooner. We know what it is for, we who have used it. Otherwise it is a piece of maritime floss some sundry equipment. I go down. Rung after rung and still the oxygen immerses me the blue light the clear atoms of our human air. I go down. My flippers cripple me, I crawl like an insect down the ladder and there is no one to tell me when the ocean will begin. First the air is blue and then it is bluer and then green and then black I am blacking out and yet my mask is powerful it pumps my blood with power the sea is another story the sea is not a question of power I have to learn alone to turn my body without force in the deep element. And now: it is easy to forget what I came for among so many who have always lived here swaying their crenellated fans between the reefs and besides you breathe differently down here. I came to explore the wreck. The words are purposes. The words are maps. I came to see the damage that was done and the treasures that prevail. I stroke the beam of my lamp slowly along the flank of something more permanent than fish or weed the thing I came for: the wreck and not the story of the wreck the thing itself and not the myth the drowned face always staring toward the sun the evidence of damage worn by salt and sway into this threadbare beauty the ribs of the disaster curving their assertion among the tentative haunters. This is the place. And I am here, the mermaid whose dark hair streams black, the merman in his armored body. We circle silently about the wreck we dive into the hold. I am she: I am he whose drowned face sleeps with open eyes whose breasts still bear the stress whose silver, copper, vermeil cargo lies obscurely inside barrels half-wedged and left to rot we are the half-destroyed instruments that once held to a course the water-eaten log the fouled compass We are, I am, you are by cowardice or courage the one who find our way back to this scene carrying a knife, a camera a book of myths in which our names do not appear. -Adrienne Rich

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Childhood is a strange country. It's a place where you come from or go to - at least in your mind. For me it has an endless, spellbound something in it that feels remote. It's like a little sealed-vault country of cake breath and grass stains where what you do instead of work is spin until you're dizzy. -Lyall Bush