Posts Tagged ‘self-awareness’

Who’s Going To Fold My Laundry?

May 15, 2015

I mean.

I got the work side of it covered.

Actually did laundry three times already this week at work.

Between swimming lessons, potty training, and boys just being boys, I have a lot of laundry to do.

But what about mine?

It’s just sitting there on the bed, looking at me like, “what you’re blogging, excuse me bitch, you have chores to do.”

My bib overalls spake the loudest.

I really should just haul ass into the shower is what I should do.

I was in the pool today with the family at UCSF Mission Bay and I can smell the chlorine on myself.

Which is actually a scent I quite enjoy.

It reminds me of swimming in high school, one of the few places I always felt safe and secure in.

I lucked into swimming.

I lucked into being on the team and I lucked for sure into lifeguarding.

That haven of chlorine and warm air was a balm to my soul, even if I did not have the words to put on it, I loved that pool, I loved the light that would come in through the windows and I loved that every once in a great while there was no one at open swim and all the guards could be found napping on plywood boxes that held kick boards and pull buoys.

I miss that.

One of the few things from high school that I miss.

Sometimes I see a post of a high school classmate on Facebook and it does make me wonder what my life would look like if I had stayed in Wisconsin.

I don’t know that I would have as many tattoos or that my hair would be multi-colored.

Of course last year when I visited my best friend and her skulk up in the Northern reaches of the state, she pointed out a number of colorful dye jobs–I was not the only one.

Dare say, however, that I was the only one in her 40s with purple and pink hair.

What would life look like if I had stayed in Wisconsin?

It is almost too much of a stretch for my mind to imagine.

I suspect I would be married and with child or children.

Career wise I have no clue.

Although, considering what I was doing when I left it would probably be in the hospitality, food service industry.

Would I be sober?

Also another thing I cannot quite imagine.

Although I believe, knowing what I know, that my disease would have progressed and found me drinking more and more.

I don’t have any doubt about that whatsoever.

I know folks who have gotten sober in Madison, in fact, someone I reached out to during a nadir or despair, but I was not quite there yet, that was to come about four months later, had told me about being sober and going to undergrad and how it was just his luck that his new good friend happened to be the floor manager at the Angelic Brewing Company.

Floor Manager.

I hated that title.

I was not the General Manager, never would be, but I always felt that Floor Manager just did not do justice to the work I put in there.  I am still amazed that I worked there for six years and did the things I did.

Although most of it is a haze of memories and the nights all blur together.

Not that I was black out drinking while I was working there, or doing drugs.

The only thing I did was an ecstasy pill one night after the bar closed in one of the last days of working there.

I was far too controlling and afraid of the repercussions of drinking and I wanted nothing to do with drugs.

I was in charge and God forbid I didn’t do the right thing.

I believe I held myself, and I still hold myself, to far higher standards than any one else was or does.

I realize, just now as I think about an ex and his wife and their two kids in Sun Prairie;  I would rather not continue thinking about what life would be like, if, when, or whatever.

The fact is life is pretty damn good now and I don’t have regrets about it.

Even the laundry sitting on my bed thinks I have done an astounding job of making it here in San Francisco.

I’ve never been forced to leave, and the only time I chose to move away was not to move back to Wisconsin, but to move to Paris.

Not Texas either.


I was just thinking though, I miss my best friend and sometimes I do wonder what it would be like to live closer to her, to get to see her and her husband and the boys a little more often.

I received a voicemail from her the other day and I could hear how much she misses me and damn, don’t I miss her.


I know.

It’s May.

But as I gear up for the ensuing travels and then the start of graduate school I don’t know that it will be any sooner.

I, of course, much prefer Wisconsin in summer.

There’s blueberry picking, strawberry picking, running around in sundresses, warm nights (mosquitos and ticks, but who’s counting those), long walks along the water, and my friend.

Then I think, well, I do like Wisconsin in the winter too, it’s pretty, the snow, the Christmas lights, the stark trees outlined against the grey skies.

It’s a different kind of beauty and one that I know well from the many winters I spent there growing up from five to when I really left, 29.

Twenty four years of Wisconsin.

There are times when I ride through the Pan Handle on my bicycle and I will have a flash, the way the light is falling, the trees, the green of the grass, and it feels, just for a moment that I am on the North East side of Madtown, perhaps the edges of Maple Bluff, and if I was just to go left rather than right I would find myself riding my bicycle past Tenney Park instead of Golden Gate Park.

But it never does happen.

And I don’t want to go back.

There is no there there.

It is here.

Here, in San Francisco where I belong.

“I always worried about you when you said that you were going to find yourself in San Francisco,” my best friend told me.

I think she meant pulling a geographic was not going to solve the problems I was trying to solve.

She was right, I took my problems with me.

But I did find me here.

I found me in Burning Man, in the rooms, in the Mission District, on the long walks through the park, the meteor shower over Twin Peaks, I found me riding a bicycle (who the hell knew that I would be bicycling all this time? Certainly not I), I found me on the beach by the ocean, the sun wrapt in my hair on my face, the sand in my toes; I found me while being a nanny, who the hell was going to call that one?

And I’m going to fold my laundry.

Because I find me in that too.

The simple acts of self-care that I have been taught to do and enjoy.

The small things that I carry out to continue getting to live in the most amazing place in the country and continue to be the most amazing woman I can be.

It all happens right here.

In San Francisco.

Nowhere I would rather be.

Right here.

Right now.

Wake Up!

February 25, 2014

I yawned as my friend said something, zoned out, tuned back in, laughed, drank some more tea, tried not to watch the clock.

Watched the clock anyway.

It’s challenging being social on a Monday evening.

I can do it.

I have done it.

I just turn into a pumpkin really fast.

I have my little routine, the things I do after work, the work that resumed today in full, a two little boys hand full, my goodness they are huge, it’s not like I haven’t seen them in months, just a few days, and they are huge, and energetic, and yup boys.

No break for me, not a nap that over lapped or a down moment.

Although there were sweet quiet moments.

Revel in this, I thought to myself, as the warm sun beamed down on me, one of the boys asleep in the stroller, the other making a big deal about figuring out how to zip up his sweatshirt.

It was just a moment of quiet, of not being engaged.

Yes, being present, that is what I am paid for when it really comes down to the nuts and bolts of it (although really, I feel I am paid because I have a gigantic capacity of love for children, which amazes me again and again, where does it come from and how deep is it?  Perhaps I won’t ever get to know the answers to those questions, better for me too, I suspect) my job is to watch and be alert and present.

To the ever-present dangers of little boys.

One little boy who is one, who I want to say is still a baby, but he is no baby, he is a boy and boy howdy is he all about letting me know his opinions about what he wants and when.

The other is nearly two and so smart and dear and precocious, and when he’s occupied with something, sand box shovel, or zipper, he can get really occupied.

So, I let him.

I just stood in the middle of the sidewalk and let the sun fall on me warmly, so much nicer than yesterday’s cold chilling fog I was riding around in for hours, listened to the birds wax in the trees, the quiet of the street with no cars, the smell of jasmine blooming in the planters in front of a house.

I looked at the way the tall palm tree on Beulah street feathered out its fronds against the sky and sighed deeply.

Stop sometimes and just be present.

It was a great day to get reunited with the boys, the day was sunny, warm, and the park was full, but not too full, no waiting in line for the swings, no struggles over sand box territory or shoving to go down the slides.

When my alarm woke me up this morning I made a snap decision to take a shower, which I would normally do  in the evening on a Monday (yeah, that’s right, I have a schedule for showering.  Shut up.  I just notice that some days work better than others timing wise, that’s all) and I got up and threw myself underneath the hot water, after raking the brush through my helmet head hair.

I was a bit disgruntled, looking back I could almost say I woke up on the wrong side of the bed, grumpy for no reasons.

I noticed it when I went to make my bed up and do my morning readings and such.

I paused and ask for some direction and said, help me show up today and just enjoy what is happening today, not worry about tomorrow, or wish I had done something differently yesterday, just show up for today and enjoy it.

Something, somewhere, God, call it what you will, I have my own secret code word for it, God, heard me, and I had a beautiful, balanced, day, being present and showing up for it.

In fact, it wasn’t until I was writing this blog that I recalled how grumpy I had awoken.

Nice, when that happens.

Nice when I am heard and I go out into the world to try to do my best to show up.


Yeah, it’s a bit shabby as far as an adjective goes, but sometimes simple, is sweet, and it was a nice day.

It didn’t blow the socks of me or want me to radically change anything in my life, which is actually a radical thing for me, not wanting to change something RIGHT NOW, because I am uncomfortable.

Oh shit.


I just realized that I walked through a bunch of discomfort and I came out the other side, mainly because I just showed up.

It is a constant awakening, I realize.

Always this coming to.

Nothing is wrong.

Nothing ever is.

It’s how I show up for it and what I do when I get there and not letting the getting there rule my brain, but to take basic, simple, tiny, really, god-awful slow steps, to grow.

And looky there, I grew some this past week.

I also had an epiphany, helped by the counsel of said friend I was having tea with this evening before heading home.

I am going to ask that my friend who is selling me his scooter keep the title to it until I pay it off.

Thereby having a secured loan.

He had offered to hand over the title already and the scooter and I had asked that he not until I have every thing all lined up, all my little ducks in a row, the safety course, the helmet, the insurance, my licence, that I be entirely above-board with it.

And here, is another place to practice that growth and honesty.

I don’t want to even think about screwing over my friend in regards to continuing to pay him for the scooter.  I can secure the loan by asking him to hold onto the title until it is all paid off.

And that is what I will do.

It’s getting easier, this whole living principled thing, it really is.

Just have to wake up to it and even when I do with my cranky pants on tight and high, I can start right over, even if it’s just minutes since the alarm went off.

I can always choose to be present.



How lovely.




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