Monday, February 20, 2017

Remembrance and Loss

"When someone you love dies, you never quite get over it. you just slowly learn how to go on without them. But always keeping them tucked safely in your heart."   I don't remember where I read this quote, I wrote it on a random piece of paper some months ago. I marked it author unknown and promptly stuck it in a book where it stayed until Friday while looking for some other random thing written or sketched.  Ironically , one day before the anniversary of my mother's death.

Turns out that day was also the day my orange boy, Buttah died. I haven't talked about it much, but Buttah has been sick. The sickness came on rather suddenly and progressed rapidly.  At first it seemed like something that would pass, he was acting a little differently but was otherwise, fine--all the markers, marked. Until the last few days. He didn't appear to be in any distress caused by pain. He leaned in to all our touches and ministrations. We made him as comfortable as we could in his final days and on Friday, he went to sleep. Quietly. 

The parallels are striking. My head and heart are in a swirl.

Pair Buttah's demise with remembering mom with receiving communication from an attorney regarding a pending case related to my dad and his death,  totally out of the blue, all within the same days, and well. . . loss and remembrance, remembrance and loss, like a never ending loop.

The hours, minutes, seconds of the last several days have been consumed with thoughts of mom and dad; tucked safely in a heart now cracked open needing to make room for my dear orange guy. Loss and remembrance. Remembrance and loss. Running in a loop. 


Monday, February 06, 2017

Three (now Two) From One Thousand

The actor at a table read. 

Last year, I shared this  The year before that, this  And many years before, this .  All that has been said before remains true and even more. In addition to acting and the music noted in previous posts, the man who will turn the page on his 35th birthday on Wednesday, will add a directing credit to his resume.

He has spoken at length of the challenges, the joys, and the pains of the process. And how he is enjoying every minute of it. He said, "If I can cultivate an environment where a bunch of strangers want to work together to create, then much of my work is done.

Casting (an arduous process) is now complete. Rehearsals will begin soon. And then, opening day!

Not sure I can adequately convey just how hard this guy works, how "matter-of-factly" he takes the knocks that come his way, how focused and committed he is to craft, to art, to creativity, to life and how art plays into that.

I wish my son a happy birthday (in two days). I wish his spirit and verve for life and art continues to grow.

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Monday, January 23, 2017

Take Aways

No, I didn't attend any of the marches. But checking in during Saturday into Sunday via multiple news sites and social media pages, I was floored by the magnitude. The global response to Friday's event was mind-boggling, overwhelming; encouraging.       

Overwhelming yes, encouraging, absolutely. But, also sobering. 

These two images culled from hundreds, perhaps thousands, state just how large the the job ahead is, just how much work there is yet to do. The marches, the speeches, the signs, and the petitions, is only the beginning.   

For those who gathered on Saturday, thank you. For you and the rest of us, the work continues. We have only just begun.  

Monday, January 16, 2017

You've Got Mail

Happy New Day!  Here we are smack dab in the middle of a new month, the first month of a brand new year and I am not feeling the newness; I am not feeling optimism usually associated with a new year (particularly when coupled with a new administration); I am not feeling UP. 

Maybe because the cold hasn't fully left my body. My right eye is phlegmy and sensitive. However, it is responding positively to treatment. For that, I am grateful. 

Still, it is a new year, a new administration, a new drive to speak up, stand up, be present, and a re-commitment to that which brings me joy and hopefully comfort to others; writing letters.   A colleague of my son's was just diagnosed with breast cancer. I shared the Girls Love Mail program with him as a way to support others as well as his colleague. 

Happy New Day! for I am taking on this year, one day at a time; treating, acting, addressing, art-ing, writing, sharing, caring . . as the day presents, unfolds. 

Happy Birthday to Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. May his wisdom, words, and strength embolden us all to live out loud. 

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Monday, January 09, 2017

Family: Life Matter

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One of my weekend projects (in the midst of my recuperation from the head cold that won't go fully away) was to get personal business and household papers in order which also meant: purge. Out with the old, in with the new(er) and all that whiz.

Well, I got that done. Feeling somewhat energized and motivated to move on to another project (inside over outside given the air temps this weekend) I decided to tackle the main photo and other memorabilia cabinet;
stuffed so full of our lives that the door didn't fully close.

Soon after I began, the thought that I'd bitten off more than I could chew crystallized in my mind. The volume of items paled when factored against with the volume of emotional intensity.

And then my daughter came into the room. She looked through some of the items, marveling at the sweetness, invoking memories of sheer joy. She commented on how the images of she and her brother as young children illustrated how protective he has always been, how loving, how gentle . .  We laughed over the kindergarten writings, the sixth grade essay, the toothless grins, the "Garfield" necklace and earring set, and especially the images of a dad fully engaged, fully invested.

My ex-husband died just before Thanksgiving. His relationship with the kids was strained long before we split. The chasm grew with his re-marriage, a stroke, a move to a Mississippi nursing home after he and the second wife split. Our daughter (much like I did with my absent dad) tried to engage, tried to embrace, tried to include him in her life, and be included in his, with little success. The experiences of the past several years left her a little broken which of course, broke my heart as I recalled my own brokenness over my dad's distancing himself from my life.

And then, Saturday. She saw what she hadn't remembered, what she hadn't known about her dad, my dad, the whole of all our lives. And we laughed. We were able to say goodbye. We were able to uplift his presence in our lives and embrace the joy that was, that is, that will always be, our family.


Tuesday, January 03, 2017

Scattered Not Gory

The Magic of Christmas 
The above image is one of the few family Christmas photos featuring me and my siblings as children. My older brother is standing next to me and the younger is barely in the frame. That is is elbow. This is a Christmas morning circa 1965 or 1966 with my mom as photographer. It was my intent to post this along with memory lane jog before the 25th of December but I was smacked with a doozie of a head cold that left me horizontal as often as possible. What little present energies were spent getting to (and attending to) work. Even still, I was sent home early one day and called off another. I've already burned some 2017 PTO hours.

Today is the best day of the last ten. The worst is over. Knock wood.

I've forgotten where this was going . . .     oh, nowhere really, except that Scattergories is one of my favorite games. Daughter and I played a couple of rounds between my coughing and sniffling. Some FB friends were passing around a Scattergories with a twist--using the first letter of your last name to answer the questions posed:

P    Animal: Porcupine.
      Girl's Name: Penelope
      Boy's Name: Peter
      Color:  Purple
      Movie: Poseidan Adventure
      Something You Wear: Pants
      Drink: Pink Lady
      Food: Pigeon Peas 
      Item in Bathroom: Pipe
      Place: Portugal
      Reason to be late: Pothole
      Car: Plymouth
      Composer: Puccini
      Author: Patricia Cornwell
      Singer: Paula Cole

I still don't know where this post was going, has gone, it is just . . well, is.    I hope everyone had a please holiday and if you had a break, I hope that too was pleasant.

Happy New Day!

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**published too late for Monday, but meant for Monday or at least earlier on Tuesday.  Yeah, still kinda scattered, operating at about 86% (generous).

Monday, December 19, 2016

Be Still

Pete in the Middle

When last we met Buttah was the featured feline planting himself in the middle of a project. Not to be outdone, here is Pete smack dab in the middle of a different project. Pete, unlike Buttah, isn't about offering any advice or wisdom. His motivations are: 1. feed me and 2. crank up the heat. He cares not what is going on unless he has determined the goings on are interfering with 1 and 2.

Pete, Buttah, and their canine counterpart, Cinnamon impact operations; most every task, most every project. How little or how much depends on the energy emitted into the atmosphere. The dynamic of the trio of fur has shifted in the last few weeks. We are still working through the newest normal. Winter (even unofficially) is not our signature season.

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