Posts Tagged ‘train ride’

Balance

March 20, 2017

I don’t know how it actually happened.

But.

It actually happened.

I did yoga, visited a friend in the East Bay, hey y’all San Leandro is much cuter than I remember, read four chapters in my Trauma reading–officially finishing the reading for the next weekend of class, listened to a two-hour podcast for said Trauma class, roasted a chicken, and made homemade chicken soup.

What?

I didn’t drive myself crazy trying to do it either.

It all just sort of sweetly unfolded.

I got up and went to yoga and it was good and I stayed pretty present in the class, only running out the door in my brain a few times trying to figure out schedules and such, but mostly I was just there in the studio doing the yoga and breathing.

I did not want to go this morning and I almost talked myself out of it, but in the end, my body won and walked me over to the studio.

My brain was mollified by the rest it got from worrying and I felt good being in my body.

Which my brain tells me will never happen as I don’t have a 22-year-old yoga body, but I do have a 44-year-old body and there was a woman in her 60s today doing yoga, that’s what I love about it, anyone can do it, although, yes, there does seem to be a proclivity for a certain type of person to be doing yoga, I do see a lot of different ages and abilities.

Yesterday there was a woman next to me who was obviously pretty new to yoga and it reminded me how awkward and uncomfortable I was in my first weeks of classes, and it also demonstrated to me that even a woman with what I would in my twisted brains says has a “better body” than me, wasn’t able to keep up with the class and I did.

This is not a judgement, it was just good noticing on my part and it helped me see that even though I am just getting in two classes  week, I’m staying in it and I can see that I have gotten better, even when I think I never will, I have.

And that we all have different bodies, some more flexible, some less flexible, some more balanced, some less balance, and that all of us, at least in that class, are doing the best we can and we showed up.

I am grateful for showing up.

I am also grateful for going over to the East Bay and catching up with my friend.

I miss her.

It’s hard when friends move and the number of folks that I have said goodbye to who have moved out of San Francisco is challenging.

And it’s hard to stay in connection with folks, even if they are just a train ride away.

Living in the Outer Sunset makes it challenging.

I was going to ride my scooter to a BART station and park it and go over, but after yoga, I was jut too tired, and sort of loose in my brain and I thought, screw it, just grab the N-Judah train downtown and take BART from the Embarcadero.

Yes.

It did take longer than had I been on my scooter.

But.

The upside?

I had time to read!

I finished the reading for my Trauma class and was very happy to get off the train in San Leandro and see my sweet friends smiling face from her car as she drove up to pick me up.

God damn it was good to see her.

I got to see her new digs and go for a scenic drive around the hills and have yummy lunch and catch the fuck up.

She understands my conundrum quite well having gone through nursing school.

Grad school is a hard, lonely, hard, lonely, time-consuming, expensive, did I say lonely, road to trudge.

Add work into that mix and it feels like that is all I do.

Work.

Whether it is school work or work work, it feels like work.

Then I realize, maintaining relationships is work too.

And that all this work, it does pay off.

My friends’ a nurse.

I have friends who are doctors and lawyers, lots of nurses too, I know PhD’s in history, I know teachers and filmmakers, I know landscape horticulturists and creative writing professionals, I know someone at Oxford for fuck’s sake.

We have all done this to get somewhere.

The work is work and it is a joy too.

Although, I have to say I appreciate it more, this work, when I make room for the work that it takes to make sure that I am staying connected to my friends and fellows.

That might actually be the most important work there is, might, ha, it really is, these relationships are what gets me through, I couldn’t do this on my own.

I just could not.

Oh.

Sure.

Sometimes I do wish I could, but I can’t and for that I am grateful.

When I tried to do it on my own, well, I fell pretty flat.

When I began to work in concert with others in relation.

Well.

I started getting somewhere.

I want to keep connecting and reconnecting.

I want to keep that balance.

I am not sure what that looks like and for today, well, I don’t have to, I did have it, I did see my friend, I did do yoga, and homework, a lot of it, and I did meal prep, which is always important to me, I did all the things.

And they were nice.

They really.

Really.

Were.

 

 

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How Did I Get From

May 4, 2016

Here to there and back again?

The day just flew the fuck by.

And here I am again, at my little sky blue, robin’s egg blue, tiny table writing yet again.

I have already written a lot today.

I started and finished my Multi-Cultural paper.

Five pages, 11 pt font, 1.5 paragraph space, 2,653 words–not counting my reference page, I haven’t put that together yet.

And I haven’t proofed it.

I was typing out the last paragraph before work when I realized, holy shit, I have to go to work.

Now.

I mean, go.

I was a few minutes behind my normal walk out the door time.

I had gotten up early to do the paper, I also wrote before I wrote the paper, my standard three pages long hand.

All the writing.

All the time.

I don’t mind though, the words they come and I am continually grateful that I have the words to express the pictures in my head.

There are a lot of scenes, there is a lot of language.

There are a lot of notebooks, blogs, papers, book manuscripts, poems, etc, etc.

I have written (not including the blogs, probably about 45-50 that I scrubbed when I started this previous nanny gig, my employers did a deep back ground check and I did not want them to find anything should they be led to my blog) 1,789 blogs.

HOLY SHIT.

Really?

Each of my blogs is at least 1,000 words.

That is always my goal, get to a 1,000 and if I get past that, fuck yeah, but at least get to the 1,000.

The same goes for the morning writing, at least three pages long hand, there is importance to not losing that muscle for me, often times I am working something out in those pages, even if they seem insubstantial, I can tell when I have skipped, rarely, or skimped, again, rarely, but it does occasionally happen, I can feel it in my bones.

I am many, many, many things.

But I am always a writer.

It does not matter how many views I have had of my blog.

67,771.

Or how many people have visited my blog page.

20,475.

Or how many followers I have.

Not so many.

But most of them I don’t know, they, you are not my friends, you stumbled upon my little blog and read a few of them and subscribed.

How fucking flattering is that?

I have 281 followers.

281 people that have opted to have my blog sent to their e-mail.

Whether or not they read it, well, I have no clue, but I am flattered none the less.

But I don’t write with you in mind.

Oh.

Sometimes I edit what I am going to write about or I allude to something, I can wear my heart on my sleeve, I can be totally transparent, but there’s still so much left unsaid that I am quite aware that I could be writing another blog entirely with a lot of material that I would not dare put here.

That being said, I do like being available and writing about things that matter to me, to my heart, to my being, I like speaking to and about my experience.

I don’t know for the most part what I will write when I sit down to share.

He sent me a photograph of train tracks.

I was reminded of summer days in Wisconsin, living in Windsor, the railroad tracks that cut through town.

Depending on my mood I would go left or right.

If I was going left I was wandering off into fantasy land.

To the left were banks of golden red snap dragons, their sword like leaves cutting through the humid air, there was a farm with horses that were out to pasture, there was a small bridge over a creek, there were blackberry brambles, and off to the left, heading out of Windsor, toward Madison, there was an island of old oak trees in the middle of a corn field.

I would balance on the rails and walk them as far as I could without falling off.

I would see that island of oaks and think about sitting in the grass there, what that perspective would look like.

I would fantasize about sitting under those oaks and the romance of it was dire and daunting and isolating, but sweet too, though bitter, I would nibble at the fantasy, a thin wafer cookie of sustenance to get me through another summer day.

However.

If I was going to the right.

I was running away from home.

Heading toward school.

Going towards the town of DeForest.

It was infrequent that I turned right, but it did happen.

And usually at night.

Or.

Once in a while I would be returning from school at night, too embarrassed to accept a ride home from swimming practice or debate or forensics, or French club, because my mom had forgotten me or was late or, who knows, I would wait and wait and wait.

And at some point.

I would head through town, walk out to the front of the school, hope to hear my mom’s car, knowing all the while that I wouldn’t, I would walk down the left side of the road and hit the railroad tracks heading back to Windsor.

I would hope for a passing train and I would imagine jumping up and catching the last rungs of the metal ladder hanging off the caboose.

Once in a while a train would come.

Most of the time I would scoot down the sides of the shale and quartz rock and let the train pass, berating myself for not trying to jump the train, not having the courage to do so, the where withal to really jump and save the hours of walking ahead of me back to the house in Windsor.

I remember once making the decision.

I could hear the train coming and it was going to be coming around a corner of the rail and it was going to be moving at its slowest, I was determined to jump it.

I gathered myself and sprang up the tracks as the last car rattled by.

I chased it for awhile, “jump, jump, jump,” I admonished myself.

I could just reach it.

If only I were to jump.

I didn’t make the leap.

I think back now and I am glad I did not.

“Argh, you are lucky to be alive,” he texted me.

Yes.

I am.

Who knows where I would have gotten off, if I had gotten off that train heading away from town into a wilderness of unknown possibilities and challenges.

To read the story of The Boxcar Children was one thing entirely.

To think that it could actually happen for me was another.

In one way or another, I realize, I have been catching trains all my life, jumping, trying, falling, stumbling, dreaming of things that are just outside my grasp, just beyond my reach.

Until one day.

I realized I had caught my train.

I had been riding it for years.

Irony that I have dated three train conductors since I moved to San Francisco?

Is it odd.

Or.

Is it God?

I don’t know, I certainly don’t need to analyze it.

Fuck.

I did enough analyzing this morning while I wrote my paper.

Suffice to say.

I am pleased with the work and the gift of being allowed to do the work.

I’ll be riding this train for a while yet.

Dream train.

Steam train.

Good night.

The moon in the window, the tracks a circle on the floor, the little engine that could puff, puff, puffing into the shadows of the night.

I think I can.

I think I can.

I think I can.

And.

I did.

My paper’s done.

My day is done.

I made it.

Tickets please.

Get Into The Spirit

December 8, 2013

I made some room today.

I am getting  a tree tomorrow.

I wasn’t going to.

I will be house sitting in the Mission from December 19th through the 26th.

Which means I won’t be at my home during the holiday, I will be elsewhere, although still in San Francisco and still with friends, I will do some service and help out where there is a need and not worry too much about what happens on the actual date.

I have some holiday parties to go to, so I won’t feel left out of the holiday mix, as well as my birthday to celebrate.

Yet, I did feel that I was not letting myself partake because of said house sitting gig and I do want to have some holiday cheer in my life.

So, in an effort to get into the mood, I took out the box of Christmas ornaments I had shoved back into the closet and pulled out the boxes of cards I had got recently and got on my way to making some merry and bright.

I wrote out 17 Christmas cards and a congrats on your new baby, as well as one happy anniversary card, and a happy birthday card too.

I have to go buy more stamps.

And actually, a few more cards, I realized that I had not gotten all the folks on my mental check list and I want to make sure that my grandmother, for instance, gets a Christmas card from me.

She’s the last of my grandparents and it means the world to me that we stay in touch.

I unwrapped my box of ornaments and knew by the time I had unfolded two pieces of tissue paper away from glass bulbs that I was on the right track.

I could feel my heart open and lift and I immediately decided I was going to get a tree.

A Charlie Brown tree, most likely, and I will get it tomorrow.

My housemate has offered to take me and since it’s much easier to get a tree back to my house via car than bicycle I leapt at the offer.

I need some lights, but other than that, I do have enough little ornaments to decorate a small evergreen.

I can’t wait to have one glowing softly in my room.

Just for me.

A sweet little token of the holiday season, a small gift to myself, a treasure.

Writing out my holiday cards felt much the same.

A gift.

The satisfaction I get from hand writing and stamping a series of cards is something that I cannot explain, but look forward to every year.

Something about the sweet acknowledgement of addressing friends near and far and thinking back to how and where we met and where our lives have gone since lights me up.

I found myself nesting and cozy in my home all day long, not even realizing it was as late as it was, the sun fading off into the cold night air, blazing and clear in the sharp bite of it, puttering around the studio, filling a white serving bowl with glass bulbs, finding a place for a small silver wreath made of jingle bells, digging out ribbons from my stash, fanning out the red and white cards with stamps on my table.

I sent out cards to friends and family from San Francisco to Maine, Wisconsin to Florida, Georgia, and Maryland.

I looked up addresses in my old Filofax–the original back up–I still have to add the updated address to a few of the cards, I am not the only one who has moved around in the past year and reflected on each time I had sent said person a Christmas card.

I still need to pick up a card or two and there’s always someone who slips through the cracks, but it does give me great pleasure to do this small task.

Sometimes I have gone to a coffee shop or a cafe to write my holiday cards, but sitting here in my small snug home felt like the exact place I needed to be.

Last year I went to Paris to write my cards.

Heh.

Ah.

Life, it is something else, isn’t it?

Continuing to work on the surrender to it and to the forgiveness of self and the constant stretching of my heart.

I sat in quiet meditation today before the morning got off and running with cards and holiday decorating and simply asked where should I direct my attention, what can I do?

How may I be of service?

I had some things float through.

Some things I fondled and held onto, some I let drift right on by.

The one thing that seemed to stick out was to open up more and let myself be loved, however that looks, and accept that what I think is best for me is probably deceptive.

Do the opposite, lady, don’t do what the thoughts say, do what the heart says.

And that sometimes is hard.

“Boy, you’re sure in a hurry to get out of my car,” he said as I unfastened my seat belt and prepared to bolt from the car to the N-Judah stop on the way back to the Sunset.

I was and I didn’t realize until he said it, I guess I am not quite ready to just going back to being a friend, my heart was not having it and I was mad to be running for the train, too tired to do anything but run.

Only to miss the train connection anyhow.

Moral of the story?

Sit still a little longer.

Wade through the discomfort and see what else can be seen.

Take the box of ornaments back out of the closet, you do want to have holiday, don’t deny yourself the love.

Get a Christmas tree.

Do what makes you happy.

And if you have to run for the train don’t be mad if you miss it.

The cold is cold, but it isn’t that cold and it makes for a warm welcome to step in from the frosty air and the long train ride through the avenues to this sweet nest perched by the roaring ocean, spiced with warm candles and spilling over with music and the wide open space waiting to be filled with a fresh evergreen sapling.

Holding the space.

Knowing that the love will rush in.

It’s just waiting for me to get out-of-the-way.


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