Posts Tagged ‘woman’

No One Is Reading

June 12, 2017

Two days in a row.

Not a single hit to the blog.

Wow.

Taking it off social media certainly did the trick and since I will be starting with two new clients this upcoming week I am grateful that I have cleaned things out.

I also winnowed out a lot of other “friends” on facecrack and my social media has come down to me checking into restaurants and yoga.

Yeah.

I did another day of yoga today.

I wasn’t planning on it, although I knew it was an option, I sort of played today by ear.

I didn’t want to stress myself out but I also wanted to make sure that I was prepped for the upcoming week since it will be long and busy and full.

I had a speaking engagement this morning so I got up early on my Sunday and did my morning routine and wrote a bunch and then headed to the Mission.

Sometimes I miss the Mission.

I will have nostalgia for it, especially when the Outer Sunset gets socked in with fog, but this morning I didn’t have that much nostalgia and by the time I was done with my engagement I was really quite happy to get out of the fray and head back out to the ocean.

I could actually feel it in my body when I crested the hill that starts the downward roll to the sea and I could see the ocean and it just soothed me and I felt calm and nurtured and happy to be heading home and not have a lot of responsibility to the day.

I met with a new lady I just started working with and we did some reading and talked, a lot, there was lots of talking and it was good.

It is so good to be able to pass on what I have been given so freely and for it to be accepted so open armed.

I just felt blessed and grateful and by the time she had left I was ready to do the first round of food prep.

I made a shredded chicken hash with Andouille sausage, corn, carmelized onions, and crimini mushrooms.

Instead of potatoes I used brown rice.

No peppers though, peppers give me indigestion.

Which always bums me out.

I have super fond memories of my mom’s stuffed bell peppers from when I was a kid and I crave them once in a while, but all peppers, especially the green ones, tend to give me acid indigestion.

Anyway, so I cooked and had a nice lunch.

And.

Well.

It’s my fathers birthday today and I decided to call him.

Except that the call didn’t go through and the phone isn’t set up to receive voicemail and I took that as a sign, it wasn’t time to talk to my father.

But I could wish him a happy birthday from my heart and remember the last time I saw him and how his skin felt so warm against my lips when I kissed his cheek goodbye.

I hope you’re well papa.

Always, I hope this for you.

I settled my heart and decided to get out of the house and do a little self-care and get a manicure.

I had already done a great big cleaning, sweeping, vacuuming and dusting as well as laundry and putting my kitchen back together once I knew for certain the paint had dried on the cupboards, so I wasn’t slacking in the doing things department.

But.

I figure I’m going to either need to take good nail care maintenance for myself or get a manicure once a week rather than the every other I have been doing.

I want to show up well-groomed for my clients.

I want to be a demonstration of good self-care.

So.

I went up to the Inner Sunset and got the nails did and then I scooted over to Noriega Produce on Noriega and 46th and picked up a few last-minute groceries to have at the house.

And then back home to unpack, fold laundry, and figure out if I was going to the restorative yoga class or not.

I decided to go.

And.

It was so good.

So stretchy and relaxing and I just felt held and coddled and like I was taking super good care of my body and I could feel where I had worked my muscles this past week with all the yoga I had done.

I wish I could go more often, but I’m always down to take advantage of the studio when I can get into a class.

Next week I’ll probably only be able to go on Saturday and Sunday.

Maybe only Sunday.

So getting it in this week was good for me.

It was also super dreamy.

I was in deep revery the majority of the time.

I felt wrapped up in golden sunshine and I went to the meadow.

There is a place, I don’t know how or where it comes from, but I get the image off and on when I am in a certain kind of open body space in yoga class.

I remember the first time I had it and it was with a specific teacher and it happened during a certain time in class and it was accompanied by a bit of music that I never did find out who the artist was, but it was bluesy folk and guitar and achy and melancholic and sweet and reminded me of high mountain meadows and tall grass and long-stemmed wild flowers and I just spun out tonight in the meadow and danced and I was accompanied.

I have never been met there before.

I remember once being in that same space and it was beautiful and I saw myself as myself now holding the hand of a younger woman who held the hand of a younger girl and we walked towards a woman, who was I also, long flowing grey hair and I saw myself.

Girl.

Maid.

Woman.

Crone.

And I was awed by the beauty and the image.

But.

Also sad.

There was no one but I in the meadow and it seemed that I was waiting.

There was a fire to be lit.

Enchantments and witchery and strawberry full moon light and warm night air and yes, bonfires.

Dancing.

And I was met and I saw a long line of faces and stories and I danced and was held and turned and it was extraordinary.

I won’t analyze for you what I saw.

I just had a dream.

On a golden lit early Sunday evening in the Outer Sunset.

I drifted off, buoyant and aglow.

Wrapped in soft butter cream light and warmth.

So much warmth.

As though cocooned in a silk hammock on a summer day nestled into the strong arms of another.

Swaying in the wind.

A swooning melting and then.

Softly the bells chimed pulling back to earth and back to hearth and back home.

To the smell of dinner.

Chicken roasting in the oven and the warm embrace of my clean sweet space.

Happy Sunday.

Sweet dreams.

Good rest.

And.

Godspeed into this hazy night of dreams and revery.

Get Your Sexy On

March 26, 2017

That’s what it felt like today.

When I wasn’t in tears.

I was in this interesting back and forth between working it and being worked over.

I went to yoga and had a really great class, my favorite teacher was teaching and he may start offering some more classes at the studio, at times I could make, so I don’t have to obsess about doing more yoga while I’m doing yoga.

I felt soft and strong in my body and I had a very open moment as I was finishing the class in the final meditation where I just felt some heart opening and some letting go of old, old, old wounds.

I think I moved through the world with that awareness today, both tender and beautiful, open and sore, alive, and sad, awed and in wonder.

I felt in my body and confident and sexy.

And I found out today that a man who I have always found drop dead sexy gorgeous has found me attractive too.

What?

And.

Of course he’s not really available to me at the moment, but fuck, it was really awesome information to get.

It means that my instincts are pretty spot on.

In fact, my instincts are so much better than I give myself credit for that I am really seeing that I am, in fact, my problem.

I was talking with a friend earlier about a coffee date I have tomorrow and how I wasn’t sure if the guy was really interested, and where’s the follow through, and…

“You know, I hear you say that a lot, like, the guy is interested, wants to hang out but doesn’t set a time, I hear this a lot, and…”

Ugh.

And yeah, I know, I have to say something, I have to be the confident one.

And confidence is sexy and God only knows how badly I want to be sexy.

Psst.

Hey lady.

I hate to break it to you, but you are sexy, just stop shooting yourself in the foot.

Don’t bother with vague, be assertive, if someone says “hey, let’s hang out,” or “we should hang out sometime,” nail them to a time.

I don’t have the patience or bandwidth to dilly dally around.

I will always be busy, that is the nature of who I am.

There will always be something in my life, because I don’t wait around to live, I go out and do things.

Except date, I’m not so great at that and it’s because I am in fear.

Fear of not getting what I want and fear of getting what I want.

So.

I am vague, I don’t say what I need, I dance around.

Fuck that.

I am confident.

Well.

Ha.

Obviously not always, but thinking or acting like I’m not a hot tamale is asinine.

I am gorgeous, I sound like an asshole, but I don’t often affirm my attractiveness as I have been classically trained like many women, to deny myself, my beauty, my authority as a sexy creature, as someone worthy of being pursued.

When I down play myself, I actually de-value my worth and I wall up and I get cold and then, well, fuck, who would want to ask me out?

I remember an ex-boyfriend telling me once that he was very surprised by my lack of self-confidence, “I feel like I am constantly having to ‘piss on my tree’ you are always being stared at, and you have absolutely no clue.”

Of course not, because I won’t be safe then.

But I’m not safe anymore in my bubble of self-dom, dancing alone in my room when I should be, could be, ought to be dancing in someone’s arms.

So.

Fuck it.

Fake it until I make it.

I’m not going to get back on dating apps or sites or any of that happy horse shit.

But.

I am going to get a hell of a lot clearer and more direct with men.

The next time a man says we should hang out, I’m going to ask when, give a time I’m available and say let’s make a plan.

Because this sexy beast is worth making a plan for.

I have had a lot of friends advocate for this sexiness and God forbid I waste it, I only have this life to live and I am not going to live it with regrets.

I have made many leaps of faith in my life.

Moving to Paris to turn 40.

Quitting a highly paid nanny job to go work in a bike shop.

Traveling by myself to London, Rome, New York.

Moving to San Francisco with a 2 month sublet, $2,000 in savings and no job.

Fuck.

The biggest leap of all.

Getting sober.

If I can do that, I can ask for what I want from a man and a date.

Yes, yes I can.

I have the power.

It’s not mine.

It’s Gods

And if you think that’s crazy, that’s ok.

God is a sexy beast too.

Like to like.

I always say.

My instincts are just fine.

How could they not be?

They are God-given.

Seriously.

Time to unleash myself from my own fear and shame shackles and get the fuck on with my life.

God did not mean for me to be alone and it’s my own fear that’s keeping me that way.

I’m over it.

Ready for the next phase of my development.

Bring it the fuck on.

This PSA, FYI, is not brought to you by my hormones.

Thank you very much.

Just my own personal reality check.

With a little help from my friends.

Thank you friends.

I couldn’t do this without you.

Thanks for having my back when I was too afraid to.

My heart is open.

My eyes are clear.

My sexy is definitely back.

Watch out.

 

 

Day One

February 11, 2017

Down!

God it feels good to be moving through the days of my program.

I felt super good today, even with starting the day with Trauma class.

Which.

Well.

Is oft-times traumatic.

However, having done so much of my own work around trauma I feel pretty grounded and able to hold myself in the stream of information that is being shared and to share my experience, not someone else’s experience.

I have been privy to much information that is confidential over the years and many confidences of delicate nature, trauma, abuse, sexual violence, stalkers, bad jobs, violence, drug abuse, emotional abuse, troubled relationships with partners, children, spouses, parents.

I have heard so much trauma and witnessed so much that I am surprised that I am not inured.

Rather.

I am impressed.

I am a little bit awed, in fact.

By the ability of us humans to heal and grow despite, or perhaps because of the nature of the pain that has been experienced.

This is not to say that I wish for you a traumatic experience, it is rather to acknowledge that holy fuck I have done the damn work.

I have shown up.

I have held my space, my heart, I have eaten out of the palm of pain and I have lived to tell the tale and in the telling, grown, blossomed, survived, thrived.

Despite, not because of the trauma.

I am graced in the knowledge that walking through the fear is never as hard as the fear wants me to believe.

I get to do this work and I am so situated that I have been allowed to go to graduate school and pursue it and be a kind of healer in my community.

This is a blessing.

This is a gift.

A gift that carries a burden that could be hard to shoulder had I not already done so much to strengthen myself and move my own stuff out-of-the-way.

That’s not to say that I won’t come up, that it hasn’t come up, that there is not some ugliness there or terror to shed light on, there is always room for growth, for more blossoming and even when it is the dead of winter I know that the plum trees will bloom on Church street and the act of walking, my face lifted to the blossoms pressed against the night sky will carry me forward through another season of pain and growth and exquisite beauty.

I was also just happy to see my cohort.

Let’s be honest.

I missed my friends.

And.

I acknowledged to myself how important these friendships have become to me.

I feel really amazed, I wasn’t expecting that as a product of doing the grad school work, that I would have another unique set of circumstances and fellows to travel and trudge the road to happy destiny, a destiny designed to connect me further with people in community.

With love.

I love that I am seen and accepted.

Oh.

I am not always liked and I don’t always like people in my cohort, but.

I love them all.

I do.

Unconditional love.

Meaning I wish for each and every one of the people in my cohort, in my class, in my school, in my neighborhood, that same respect and love a showering of respect and a willingness to acknowledge that we all deserve to be happy, however that looks.

I don’t have to like you to love you.

I don’t have to like you to wish for you the best, whatever and however that manifests.

I am an equal opportunity lover.

Heh.

Maybe you find a love that falls across you gently like a pick pocket brushes your thigh.

This means.

That I also unconditionally love myself, even when I wonder, am I people pleasing again, am I holding my tongue because I don’t want conflict, am I acquiescing to someone else’s need?

I might be.

At least I can recognize it now and more forward with that knowledge too.

So much to learn.

So much to feel.

The good new kids, you’re going to have feelings.

The bad news?

You’re going to have feelings.

But.

The nice thing is, feelings aren’t facts and despite feeling many things, I don’t have to be held hostage to my feelings.

I can have them.

I can let them go.

I can let them move through me.

It is a gift to see the emotion, to name it, to love myself and let whatever is there, rise, float to the surface, gather light, bloom, blossom grow, then slowly wither, become a puff of dander that the next feeling breathes against it and pushes the seeds carried by small parachutes of fluff and gossamer, carrying the impetus for so many other feelings to grow, blossom, wither, and die upon the warm air of God’s breath.

A sigh of kisses.

A multitude of stars.

I can contain millions.

I do.

In fact.

So too, do you.

Extraordinary.

This.

How hard I have striven to find these small moments of metaphor, Dolly blue in the hand crank washing machine of my heart, the pain renders it all the more beautiful and I rise to the light of the full moon.

Woman.

Once more.

My own.

You may have tried to trespass.

I may have shut the door.

I may have resisted.

I have come to understand my struggle and my power.

I underestimated my strength.

My fellows see it.

They breathe it back to me in the language of love and unconditional surrender.

The is that is right now.

The being that is scoped across my heart, a light house beaming its beacon at the end of the universe.

A small flower opening.

My face to the sun.

Uplifted and held.

Tears on my face.

The water of love showering my heart.

Where all the wild things go to grow.

I sing my barbaric yawp at thee.

Sounded over the rooftop of the city.

Howled into the nether regions of love.

I gather you here, upon my breast, open hands to cradle you close.

The music of the spheres.

The resonance of light in your eyes.

Your head upon my shoulder.

Warm breath.

Human.

Together.

Moving through and above.

Beyond.

Into another realm.

Which is only this one repeated again and again as I attend to all those things that I thought were lost underneath the attic stairs where my dreams went to nestle and die.

Or so I thought.

They only slumbered.

They only dreamed.

And now.

Well.

I have them again.

And I won’t let them go.

Trauma class.

Trauma.

Trauma.

Trauma.

I meet thee there.

With.

Love.

And.

Surrender.

And.

Gentle.

Repair.

 

 

God, You Smell Good

November 22, 2016

“Wait, hug me again,” my friend said, “mmmhhmm, that’s what a woman should smell like.”

Aw.

Thanks man.

He was the third guy in the past twenty-four hours to tell me I smelled good.

Last night at my speaking engagement.

Tonight at my deal after work.

At least I know I have my scent dialed in.

Heh.

And my nails did.

I snuck it in between work and doing the deal.

It was a long day at work, I’m super glad I was able to take a half hour and decompress.

I came into work this morning at 8 a.m. to discover the one of the parents was staying home sick with the flu and one of the boys was off as well.

Plus the baby.

Good gravy.

It was a full day.

But.

I had some reprieve when the mom felt better and went to pick up the third boy from school and took the two boys out to an afternoon matinée.

I took the baby to the park.

She’s so much fun.

And she really is like my number one fan.

We spent a good five minutes today saying each other’s name back and forth and giggling.

She ran, I mean ran across the floor, arms upraised, “Carmen, Carmen, Carmen, Carmen,” and threw herself at me today.

I mean.

Man, it’s nice to be loved by your boss like that.

Heh.

She’s taken to kissing me and looking deeply into my eyes.

It’s pretty endearing.

The mom who was home sick today told me when she got back from the movie, “we are really going to miss you.”

Aw.

That was super nice to hear.

And when she sat down I asked her what I should do with the oldest boy, poor pumpkin had fallen asleep on the couch tonight at 5p.m.

He never naps.

He’s been sick too.

Ate almost nothing but a popsicle and some Mac N Cheese.

This morning when I showed up he hadn’t gotten out of bed yet, it was nearly 45 minutes before he stumbled down the stairs for a waffle with grandma’s strawberry jam on it.

He ate about a 1/4 of it.

I pretty much knew then.

He was super sick.

I had a passing moment.

Please, dear God, no getting sick right before  I leave for my friend’s home for Thanksgiving.

Please.

So when his mom looked on him with utter aghast befuddlement, “I don’t know, he’s never fallen asleep on the couch before, he’s just not a napper.”

“I can carry him upstairs,” I said, “and put him to bed.”

I had almost done it already, but figured I should wait for the mom’s thoughts before throwing any kind of monkey wrench in their schedule.

“I can’t, not in my state, I just, yes, can you?”  She asked ashen with her illness.

Poor sweet family.

I scooped the boy up and cradled him in my arms, he shifted, I kissed his forehead and walked slowly up the stairs whispering little sweet nothings in his ear as I held him against me.

He woke up a tiny bit and grumbled something at me and I said, “don’t worry bunny, I’m just going to snuggle you down into bed, you’re fine, mommy is coming home soon.”

“Rest,” I said and tucked him into his bed.

He turned on his night-light, it’s over his pillow mounted on the head-board of the bunk bed, and burrowed into his pillow.

“Good night sweet boy, I love you,” I said and turned off the light.

“Love you too, Carmen,” he whispered and rolled over.

Oh.

My heart.

I will miss them too.

I have quite connected with the little clan of them.

I came down and the mom was sitting on the couch with the middle boy, “thank you, so, so much, I couldn’t have carried him up.”

I was so happy to help and then the baby girl came running over, “up, up, up, Carmen, Carmen, up.”

I swung her up.

She’s totally over the flu bug that has laid the family low.

She kissed me.

She looked into my eyes, “love you Carmen.”

Oh my God.

All the love today.

It was so, well, lovely.

Then hearing a former lover tonight share and being able to sit and listen and be kind and not have judgements.

Ok.

Maybe I had a few.

But they melted away.

Just another human.

Just another person stumbling through the world.

“God, you smell so good,” he buried his face in my hair.

I could feel his breath on my neck and I thought, ok, I need to find my seat before do something stupid.

Warmth in my face as I reflect.

I’m right in the middle of the cycle and a little ramped up, even though I am tired.

Had he made a suggestion.

I might have suggested he come over.

But.

Nope.

And for the better.

There are reasons why we are not together.

Despite enjoying the compliment and watching his handsome face and big emotive brown eyes .

Best left to his own devices and I to mine.

Not to say I am not up for whatever fun the Universe has in store for me.

I absolutely am.

I am out and about in my world.

I wish to see and be seen and I’m letting myself be gentle with the whole thing.

I don’t have to manipulate it, figure it out, or make anything happen.

Life is unfolding in a delightful manner and I have no need to force the bloom to blossom faster by pulling off the petals so it will unfurl in the way I want it to.

Everything is coming up roses.

I mean.

I should know.

I smell like a bouquet of them.

Seriously.

 

 

Damn You

October 23, 2016

Second wind.

I did not expect to be so jazzed up all the sudden.

I was crashing pretty hard in my last class of the day and just put my forehead down on the shoulder of one of my classmates and said, “make it stop.”

Or something to that effect.

It was a long day.

But hey.

It’s done now.

And of course.

I am wide awake.

I’m listening to music and writing and drinking hot tea and thinking about high-school.

Yeah.

That sounds like good times, right?

Ha.

But.

It was with a certain sweetness and fondness that I was thinking about myself and with a great deal of compassion for the experiences that made me.

I wouldn’t wish to go back.

I wouldn’t wish to change it.

I wouldn’t go and tell that girl child turning woman, do it different, here’s how, no.

I would not.

I am in love with who I am.

I was happy today and light and free and sad and sorrowful and of service and I showed up and yes, I was tired by the end of the day, but that girl, that girl reading books in her room, cuddled up in a worn out chair covered in my grandmothers afghan, that girl made this possible.

She dreamt.

She would listen to music and read and stare out the window.

I don’t remember what I thought about.

Sometimes I would look in a mirror and wonder about the reflection there.

I thought I was pretty.

I thought I might even be beautiful, but I did not get that kind of feedback.

I was curious.

Am I seeing myself?

Or.

Why?

There was that a lot, the asking why.

Sometimes I would fantasize or play with my hair or dress up.

Nothing that I ever reflected by wearing back to school, clothes wise that is, except with one or two exceptions of trying out a new look one week in high school my senior year that I was so nervous to wear that I could hardly enjoy it.

But I rocked it.

I have always liked clothes and fashion.

I was not in a place to wear the clothes I wanted.

But.

Boy did I covet certain things.

I am proud of myself though.

When I look back.

I carved out my own way.

I was my own woman.

I had nothing to really model on, which was on one hand a kind of curse, but I also got to learn, trial and error what I liked and what I don’t.

I’m still discovering.

But.

Some seeds were planted in that room.

From reading all those books.

My God did I read.

I miss that sometimes now.

All the time.

Reading for pleasure.

I don’t get to do it nearly enough.

Reading for school has super ceded that luxury.

Funny that.

Reading, a luxury.

But my God.

When I think about the hours curled up on the couch, or in my room, or in my bed, or under my favorite apple tree in the orchard.

I was moony and dreamy and fanciful and the stories I read reflected that and also, they were my escape.

I was thinking about that as well tonight.

Escape.

All the ways I can check out when it gets to be too much and how I have hidden out, sometimes in plain view, and yet, how very much I want to be seen.

I felt very seen today.

I did a genogram presentation of my family tree.

I traced inter-generational traumas three generations on one side of my family and four generations of it on the other side.

All the pain.

All that hurt.

All the sorrow.

I felt my chest get hot and I realized that what was coming out of my mouth was not what I had planned and that was ok.

I have done enough public speaking, so much, I have spoken in front of crowds big and small, that I don’t really have a problem doing it.

I’m actually really quite good off script.

I typically do need to know what I am talking about.

And my family history, though not as much of a mystery as it was a week ago, was still settling in my system.

I made sure I was pretty today.

I wore flowers in my hair.

I thought of sweetness and resilience.

I thought of grace and service.

I thought how I could show up and heal by sharing.

Therein lies the issue, I feel, I believe, so much of the secrecy, the shame, the conflict and contention that doesn’t get spoken of, gets twisted up in my heart and lays there heavy and sodden like wet leaves mulching into winter on the hoar-frost covered land.

So.

I swept clear some ground.

I laid it bare.

I spoke my truth, to the best of my knowledge and understanding.

I breathed.

I felt my face flush.

I said the words.

I was held the room did not fall apart.

Although after, when I sat I realized how much the class was affected.

Well.

One person.

Her sweet face and red eyes letting me know how my words had landed.

I don’t really recall much of what I spoke of.

Oh.

The bones of it, the narrative, the stories, the lineage of pain handed down the line, mother to child, father to son, grandparent to grandchild.

I do.

However.

Recall pointing out the brightness on the map.

The bright triangles of joy I encapsulated myself and a few members of my family.

The joy of recovery and the strength there.

“Few people realize how the family structure is affected when one member gets into recovery,” my professor had briefly tossed out into a lecture weeks ago.

I hung that star on my paper.

I flashed it bright.

My recovery.

My foundation.

My base.

My place of growth, stellar and bright and resilient.

I have no idea where the resilience comes from, perhaps my grandmother on my fathers’ side, I am named after her.

Maybe.

I don’t know.

I don’t need to know.

I don’t need to change anything.

I don’t approve of it, but I do accept it.

And as I sank down in my pretty dress and felt my heart beat hard in my chest I knew I had succeeded.

If I can do it.

So can you.

If there is a meaning in all of this, it is that I survived.

And that I got better, stronger, more powerful, more loving.

More.

More.

More.

More love.

More magic.

Just fucking more of all the things.

And I’m almost through.

Literally and figuratively.

One more day of class and another weekend down.

One more small step down the road.

One more opening of the door to my heart.

Just a little wider.

Just a little more open.

Just a little.

More

Available.

For.

The sunlight of the spirit.

And.

All.

All of it.

All.

The love that gets to come in when I clear out the wreckage of my past.

Yes.

Please.

More of that.

Inwardly Re-arranged

October 20, 2016

I got absolutely nothing done today.

Yet.

I had astounding, life changing things happen.

All over the span of a few minutes.

All in a day.

Clear the decks.

Make way for change and with my heart in my throat I leapt.

I don’t know where I’m going to land.

It will be in new territory.

It will look exactly like what it looks like now.

Except.

That everything is different.

Violets covered in sugar crystals.

Like the best sex I never had.

Like spangles of star dust and fireworks and quiet.

An inner knowing.

An inner depth of knowledge about myself, my disease, an awareness of old pain that has settled again and instead of pain, is now stronger for having walked through the unbearable lightness of love.

Sunlight on my face.

My hair up today, the breath of the ocean warm on my skin as I got ready for work.

The books I haven’t read enough of, the paper I still need to write, the things all put on pause so that I could navigate through uncharted waters.

I know better than to go to alone.

I tearfully surrendered this morning to finally after days of being quiet, telling.

I told.

I was terrified.

I already knew the answer and I had worked through the big emotions and had the big talk with God, I knew.

I know that where love is concerned there is no choice.

However.

I don’t have to see it through my eyes only.

I get to see it through the perspectives of others, who may have a different point of view, a different way of seeing.

And he did.

And he was kind.

And there was no shame in the telling.

And I cried.

And it hurt.

And then the relief.

And then the sorrow.

And then the tears again.

And then.

Well.

I knew.

And even though only a tiny bit of the story came out.

The bones of the narrative.

It was enough.

He understood and we talked about talking more and I just did that too.

And it was kind and there was no judgement, no shaming, no making me feel bad, a warm heart, a sort of support that I have, that I am so lucky to have, that I am so grateful to have that I can keep healing and getting better.

Not that I am fucked up.

Well.

Hahaha.

Maybe a little.

But.

There’s hope for me, always has been, I’m not in this alone.

I have no details for you.

I have only the inner workings of my heart and the assurance that I am loved for who I am without question or repercussion.

That I am seen and held and loved and taken care of.

Because I asked for help to work something through, to see where it went, to untangle the knot that I got tied up in.

Glorious knot.

So sweet was it to surrender to that binding.

A surrender that lead to further surrender, further release, further soft acknowledgement of who I am, where I have come from, and to whom I belong.

To myself.

To what works best for me.

To love.

I was saying the St. Francis prayer.

Yes.

I pray.

Hush, this wilding woman with tattoos and tales of Burning Man does spirituality too.

Surprise, surprise.

There is a line in the prayer that gets me every time.

To love, rather than to be loved.

That is what I can do.

To know that I have a God.

And you have a God.

That I can only take care of myself and sometimes, a lot of the times, I don’t know how to do that, so I do, I turn towards those with more time, with more experience, with wider perspective.

And I get what I need.

And my heart, so high in my throat all day today, finally starts to ease down back into my chest, my breath back into my body, my soul careening about, high on a taut string like a diamond kite in the sky, softly, gently, sails back down, no tussle in the tree tops, nor tangled and stuck in the high wire.

But.

Soft.

There.

A gentle, sweet landing in the tall grass.

The summer grass.

The grass in the park behind the apartment building on the North East side of Madison.

The grass not yet mowed and higher in the last push of summer, the blades warm, cradling the kite, the long string I wind back up and as I turn the handle of the spool the loose fabric of the kite slides over the top of the grass and back to me.

The call of the red-winged mocking-bird.

The high blue sky.

The sun patter down on my shoulders now more freckled as I turn from the girl to the woman.

My soul, myself, my heart.

My life.

All this purposeful trudging.

It matters.

I have changed.

I stood on the roof tonight.

I held a warm little girl in my arms.

She pointed at the sky.

“Star.”

“Yes,” I said, pointing across the soft midnight blue, the last light of sunset fading behind the hills of Twin Peaks, “and plane, and satellite.”

I remembered when I was little and how the lights in the sky moved me so much, the flashing planes and the story of flight.

I have had a sort of flight today.

A lifting of my spirit into that vastness and through it all a song in my heart.

I have no answers for you.

I just have love.

Like the foam left on the beach after the waves have crashed in and rushed out.

A soft melting memory of desire seeping back into the sand, a lace of bubbles upon the shore, a dream shimmering there.

A moment.

Then gone.

Ghosting kisses on your face.

Grace in the hallway.

Swallow song in the barn of my heart.

I would take away your pain.

But I have my own to carry from the shore, across the bridge.

And into the land of a brand new day.

One foot a time.

Into the light.

Into the sun.

Into the love.

Love.

The only place left for me to go.

There.

Just there.

Love.

Re-set Button

April 18, 2016

Has been re-set.

Sleep.

Sunshine.

Yoga.

Walks on the beach.

With the god damn entire city of San Francisco.

Well.

I suspect the other part of the city was probably congregating at Dolores Park, but my god there were a lot of people out at the beach.

So many intoxicated little bikini clad, festival be-decked, floppy hatted young things sprawled all over the sand wasted and sunburnt.

“Jesus fuck,” I said on the phone, as I crested the dune heading down toward the beach.

“What was that?” My person asked surprised by the sudden segue in the conversation.

“There are so many people here, it’s, it’s I don’t know, really too much,” I ended.

There she was, the gorgeous blue Pacific, calling me forward, alluring and dappled in bright coins of sun, but between me and that ocean, so, so, so many people.

So much drinking, smoking, and silliness.

Not that I am upset about the imbibing, it’s just not my scene and my neighborhood has definitely become a scene, especially on the weekends and really especially when it is nice out.

God damn it was nice out today.

I got up and out early and off to yoga by 9 a.m.

I stripped the bed, threw the sheets in the laundry, made my bed, knelt down got some humble on and asked to have a good day, to have some fun, to show up for the women I was going to be working with, to show up for my recovery, to show up for the school work I needed to get done–really did it have to be so very nice when I need to do so very much reading?

I sipped some iced coffee and headed to Yoga Beach, just down the block, unfurled my yoga mat and left the outside world far, far, far behind.

For an hour and fifteen minutes I was nowhere else.

Except when I was startled by reverie during my practice.

I find that I get different things from different instructors, and this experience today had me overwhelmed with gratitude and light and joy and grief.

All in shades of grey.

Soft, cashmere, ombre, grey.

Fogged out.

Misted.

A tale of swathed heart beats, true North, meadows full of fireflies.

And.

A little girl in a white dress with bare feet and brown hair in braids, her face brown, the tops of her cheeks just sun kissed a dusty rose.

I recognized her.

She is me and I am her and I saw her a couple classes ago and wasn’t sure yet that I had wanted to write about her.

She beckons to a dazed innocence that I think, or wish, or  chose to bedevil and beguile myself with that I had at some point in my young life.

A naive and innocent joy and trust.

Then another woman.

Old, thin, the sharp line of her jaw still fierce, the bones in her face more prominent, but still a softening around the cheeks and long hair, again in braids, in a shift this time more grey than white ombre dipped black at the bottom.

And this is me and there I am, old, proud, soft, hard, braids, bright eyes, stretched hands, friends with sun in the sky, the moon in the meadow, the lark in the tree.

Finally.

The third woman.

The woman I am now or soon to be, joined in the circle, grey shift shimmering like pearls, floating about me, hair in braids, mouth lifted, smiling, cheeks sunburnt, heart full and open and I realized that I wanted her to be me and the feelings that were all there, the sadness and the grief and the shallow sorrow, a teaspoon of salt water in an ever expanding ocean of feelings.

I remembered an old image that I had before, years before, an old idea or photograph in my head, this picture of my heart, a map, an unfolding, hilled and steepled there and there, graded with arrows pointing up and down, flickering bulbs of light, smoked neon, the chasms and neighborhoods, the map pinned down on the board of my soul.

I had this perceptive feeling that my heart was always struggling to curl up in on itself, to protect itself, to not hurt or feel or grieve or say goodbye or lose or fall.

To be inert, to drift, to atrophy, rather than feel that pain.

That pain of being alive.

That beauty of being alive despite the pain and the glory of reveling in the beauty despite, nay because of that sorrow.

I avowed to myself that I would not let my heart curl up, I would not withdraw, I would not build up that wall and I would stake down my heart, keep it open, make it bigger, make it fuller, live it harder, bolder, fiercer, now, more than ever, I mean, bring it damn it.

Today.

Though.

The image, the map of my heart the ghosts of streets I didn’t go down, the choices I took and walked away from or ran away from, or huddled down, a small bunny tharn in the light throttling down the roadway, only to have it pass over me, a whirling wind, an engine screaming horror into the bloody dusk, I saw that mapped heart different.

I did not see a heart pinned down, I saw a heart anchored.

I felt it rooted there.

There were no pushpins or staples or nails.

No.

I saw flowers.

I saw daisies, white, sunny, innocent, strong, pure, roots intwined and laced, a border of light holding down my heart.

The dazzling circumference lit and rising toward the sun, unfurled, tender, delicate buttons of butter yellow surrounded by coronas of white petals and coarse green teethed leaves.

I know.

I know.

Yoga.

Sheesh.

But there again, in my meadow, dancing, in the circle, these three aspects of me, child, woman, crone.

I do not know what legacy I will leave.

I do not foresee where my life will go or who I will affect or who will affect me.

I do, however, know, this reconciliation of love and tenderness, these stars, fallen kisses from God, as they rise above the ocean, calling to me to feel it all, and continue forward.

To keep dancing to that spiritual bluegrass of burnt dragonfly wings and dandelion seed pods blown through and scattered, the worn out passport of my childhood still in my pocket.

I am the legacy of love to myself.

I will continue on.

Love, loving, a house on fire, burn me down.

I arise again, sparks flying toward the heavens.

I will meet the stars and they me and we will fly together.

Over the meadow.

Into my soul.

Into the laughing mouth of God.

Which is just love.

Love.

Always.

That.

Always there.

Love.

 

Say the word and I’ll take a hatchet to your heart too.

 

You’re Back!

June 2, 2015

My friend announced and happily hugged me.

I hugged him right back.

Yes.

I’m back.

I mean, I was back yesterday, but I was still pretty out of it.

I was exhausted.

I mean tuckered the fuck out.

Traveling will do that to me and as I start to look forward to the summer months (summer?  What summer, that fog this morning!), it is June first, hello how did that happen?  I realized that I should accommodate this realization a bit more than I may have in the past.

For instance.

When I go to Burning Man I usually push as hard as possible and stay as long as possible and then go right back to work pretty much the next day.

I have to think about that this year.

Do I want to be wearing myself out that much right as I start graduate school?

If I was tired after hanging with my family for three and a half days, what the hell is Burning Man going to look like?

However.

There is something different about Burning Man than my family.

I have created my own community and family there and I know how to act, I was not anxious or stressed at my grandma’s but I did find myself being far quieter and just spending a lot of time observing, I had to force myself to engage and not check out.

I can check out without any sort of electronic device, my body is just sitting there, but my brain is 100 miles away.

Being in a new situation with people I barely know and infrequently see is tiring.

I won’t say I was putting on a front, I was just cautiously being me.

I found myself slipping into that place where I get quiet enough I may disappear.

Perhaps that is why I do hair geographics and wear loud makeup.

Although, I dearly love my crazy hair and exotic makeup.

I was putting it on this morning in between making a second pour over cup of coffee, and I realized with a bit of a chuckle, that any other woman would consider what I was doing as going out to the club makeup.

Eye primer, concealer, powder, three different shades of eyeshadow (all Urban Decay) smudged together for a nice hazy smoky eye, two different eye liners, one liquid, the other kohl, eye brow powder, one liquid blush, “Orgasm” by Nars, and a powder blush, “Cabana Boy” (let’s just cut through the bullshit and say today I am wearing sex on a stick) by The Balm, and mascara.

That sounds like a lot.

Right?

But no.

Just my normal going to nanny make up.

No wonder one of my previous employers asked me to assist on a make up session for a video, I like makeup.

So even if I’m quiet, you know, I’m seen.

The person who doesn’t really see me well is myself, so sometimes I am not sure I need all the extra stuff, but man, it’s fun to play with.

And I could do more, I don’t know how to contour my cheekbones or shade and I don’t use foundation and well, uh, anyway I don’t know when this became a blog for Sephora.

It was good to get back into my routine.

The writing, the breakfast, the ride into work on my bicycle, the boys, who were such little peaches and so good to see.

“I just want to curl up and cuddle, Carmen Cat,” he said as I read him the new Dr. Seuss book I had been given to give to the boys, “I love you, meow!” He finished, squeezed himself into a little ball and tucked his head under my chin.

How can a girl resist that?

it was good to get back in with my people after work too, I missed the fellowship and I did not get out as much as I had thought I was going to.

Not usually my M.O.

And tonight when I got home.

I could feel it.

A rapid fire house cleaning was going to happen.

Sweep.

Swiffer.

Scrub down the bathroom sink.

Take out the trash, like the houses trash, the three big bins, to the curb, and then I tossed myself in the shower and washed my very pink hair.

I had a moment in the shower when I thought, will I be a therapist with pink hair?

Will people go to me?

Will I get referrals?

Ha.

Not something to worry about right now Martines.

Let’s just wait and see about getting into the semester first before worrying about how to dress like a professional.

I’m not there yet.

Where I am, is here.

Freshly scrubbed, shaved, shampoo’ed with the hair drying, some Coleman Hawkins on the stereo (that was something else I realized I missed, I didn’t listen to music at all while I was in Chula Vista, my gram always had the television on, a sort of constant chatter in the background, totally outside my comfort zone–I don’t own a television and I can’t remember the last time I saw so many network commercials or so much news, that in itself wore me down), hot tea on the table in my favorite mug.

Life is good.

I have a full week of work.

I have my typical after work commitments.

I have folks I’ll be meeting up with and doing the deal.

Yay.

Back into my life and my routine, with another experience to tell and share and pass on.

I was telling a friend that I had some expectations about the experience and though they weren’t big ones, I felt that in the back of my head I expected it to be more dramatic.

I would have big old epiphanies.

My life would change.

And of course.

It has.

It did.

Just in small, not quite so glaring ways.

Love is sometimes shy and quiet and the softness of it can go undetected if I am drowning it out with the busy.

Slowing down to my grandmothers pace and sitting, sometimes, for hours not doing much was it’s own kind of revelation.

Being so still on the back swing that the humming birds dive bombed my head on their way to the feeder.

Have you ever had a hummingbird fly close to your head?

It’s loud!

Love.

I love that I am home.

That I am back.

But I also love that I went.

I don’t know what perspective I have gained, more will be revealed, I am sure, but I do know that I did it.

I took action.

I made the amends.

I showed up.

And I got to be a grand-daughter.

I get to be so many things.

Daughter, sister, grand-daughter, niece, cousin, nanny, friend, confidant, mentor, human, lover, partner, student, bicyclist, artist, child of God, blogger, tattooed dragon girl, traveler, Burning Man aficionado.

All the things.

How lucky am I?

Woman Of The World

April 1, 2015

That’s what I’m thinking of re-titling my blog page.

I will probably always be a “girl on the go” in my heart, I feel like a girl most times, sometimes a small girl, sometimes an adolescent, but more and more, I feel like I am a woman.

Only took 42 years to get here.

Maybe it has something to do with not reaching out to men that don’t serve me well any more.

My father

My ex boyfriend.

The old ex boyfriend.

The lover.

The other lover.

The one that could have been a lover, but never was.

The old friend, yeah that one, who was never in my heart an old friend, but a sort of I wish it could be, why isn’t it, maybe it will be someday.

Or perhaps it has something to do with saving my money to buy the thing that I know I am going to be using a lot of very soon–my new MacBookAir.

I am in fact, writing this blog on my old computer and I am wee bit astounded that I am able to, although, it is not the same as it was.  There are glitches.  I for instance, can’t see what I am writing as I am writing.  The program is not translating the way it should.  I actually have to scroll down, after every line.  Good thing I’m aces at typing, but it is disconcerting.

It is almost like using a manual typewriter.  Last night this was not the case, but tonight, so it goes.  At least I am able to use the computer.

I also can’t tell how many words this is.  The word count is disabled.

I know all the kinks will get worked out and I will have a new computer to write with and internet with and do things with and all that stuff.

Wait.

I mean all the things!

Yes, all those things.

Like growing up and paying my health insurance as soon as I get it in the mail.

Oh yeah, I just did that.

And it was that last action that made me think, you know, you’re a grown up.

The little girl, she is still there, the young woman is there too, that angst filled teenager with her desires to dance with somebody who loves me.

Heh.

I guess I just dated myself there a little bit.

All those sad, lonely nights, fantasizing and dreaming and wondering about what life would be when I grew up.

I was not expecting this, but tell you what, this is real good.

March has been full and replete and astounding in its way.

When I think about all the things that have happened and all the good that has come my way, it is no surprise to me that I am a “woman of the world.”

I got into graduate school, having made the decision to become a therapist, sticking with the intuition and the guidance and the suggestions given me, really following through, applying, and getting in.

Then securing my place in the cohort by depositing money to hold my spot and to accept that I was accepted.

What else?

Getting of my duff and buying a ticket to visit my grandmother in Chula Vista.

This feels very grown up, making plans to see family and to stay connected.

What else shows me a woman?

Asking for a job review, getting a great performance review, asking for vacation time when I want it, getting to go to Burning Man.

Oh yeah, that is a womanly thing to do.

The figure-head of Burning Man is a man, we all know that, but when I think of all the women that make that organization go, well, I am proud to be a part, albeit a small part, but a part nonetheless, of the matriarchy.

Then there is the taking care of myself, the food, taking an iron supplement again, getting my knees checked out, having my skin looked at, the hydrocortizone, fyi, is totally working.

And finally, getting off the social media dating kick.

That feels very grown up.

Not succumbing to the cave man interactions of texting and Tindering and checking you out on Hinge and swiping left, right, upside down, inside out, over and under.

Making the decision to allow myself to be pursued and in the meantime, actively pursue my life, regardless of dating or not dating.

I believe that I will always be a free spirit, young at heart, a girl on the go, for certs dude.

However, as I have more than one purse now, helps balance me out after using a messenger bag all week-long, I think it is accurate to say, the lady is all grown up.

Oh, don’t worry, I’m still a pile of glitter and longing.

But I think I may be able to assimilate it into my grown up world.

There’s room for all the facets of me.

I am a brilliant diamond.

With many wonderous sides to me.

The glitter just makes it sparkle all a tiny bit more.

And who doesn’t like a little glitter now and then?

Are You Going Out Tonight?

November 9, 2014

Uh.

No.

I just got in and I am staying in.

Note to Okstupid profile inquiry number six in exchange–yes I am interested in dating.

No.

Not tonight.

No.

I don’t want to meet you and go see a movie on our first date.

Guys.

First dates equal coffee shops, maybe a cup of tea, a chill space, probably afternoon.

If it goes well it can segue into dinner, a stroll, a hang out.

But a movie, at night, for the first time meeting, no.

How the hell do you get to know someone you’ve never met in a dark movie theater?

Unless it’s that kind of dark movie theater.

I am, however, not interested in meeting in that kind of theater either, repeat, coffee shop.

Nice.

Easy.

Simple.

“You have to do the communicating.”

“You have an amends to make.”

NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOoooooooooooooooooo.

Ugh.

I had an amends to make, and wouldn’t you know, it wasn’t to the person I thought it was to, it was to me.

“How old are you, 42?”

Um.

No, not quite yet, but yes, next month, this lady will be a snappy 42 years old.

“Grow up.” She said it succinctly, to the point, with no meanness or judgement, just, hey, come on, grow up, this is how adults act, this is what women do, learn how to communicate, you are a woman, you can do this.

Just.

Keep it light, easy, uncomplicated and kind.

KIND.

So a script was written out, thank you God for women in my life who are willing to hold my hand while I fumble around writing something in the margins of my grocery list.

Which is when I made the call, on my way to Other Avenues to pick up a few essentials for the weekend.  I also, wow, I might really be growing up here, made the call after I had lunch.

No hungry, angry phone call here.

I almost made the call prior to that, eating of the lunch, and then it hit me, nope.  I have to take care of myself and there is no rush, I am going to take care of the communicating that needs to be done so that I can call up my person and report back that the amends was made.

Still getting to change my behavior, probably I will have to continue in this vein for some time, but at least I don’t balk at it the way I used to, I take direction, I do the action, I get the relief.

And the relief, well it was huge.

It wasn’t me.

I mean, that sounds vague, but I don’t feel like reporting blow-by-blow the gist of the conversation, rather personal and private, suffice to say the gentleman was being mindful of my welfare and it was a sweet, insightful conversation.

I showed up for it, fed, and present, walking to the grocery store with the warm sun on my face and the sea off in the distance shimmering and sparkly in the light.

Clarity.

I got clarity.

Which is fantastic, since, well, I’m not a mind reader, although I have had myself convinced on more than one occasion that I am indeed just that–capable of deciphering how another feels and then manipulating my response to get the desired response from said person.

That my friends is what’s called crazy making.

And man, I can make some crazy.

I used to bake dozens of sugar cookies during the Christmas season, spread them over the table and spend hours frosting them, it took hours and hours and sometimes days of prep as I spread the buying of ingredients out over the course of a week or two so that I could afford all the necessary components.

I can spend just as much time with my kookoo ideas.

Fortunate for me, I don’t run the circus anymore.

As my friend Bruno used to say in Paris, ‘the monkey is off my back, but the circus is still in town.’

I can so relate to that.

In a previous incarnation of my life, I might have jumped at the idea of going out on a movie date last-minute with a guy I’d just met online, especially if he was say 31 and way cute.

However, I know where that goes and I am so not interested.

Even if I was interested, I’m not.

Clarity here too, is great.

I don’t mind going out late, I have, I will again, it’s just the idea of not encouraging the fantasy, and I do mean fantasy, that there is a scarcity issue in my life.

There are more than enough men out there to date without worrying that random guy OkStupid is the last of the line, so I better get gussied up and hustle out to the late show down the street.

Uh.

No.

How do I want to show up?

In abundance and knowing that I am damn worth the effort.

There really are more fish in the sea.

There’s some for you and some for me.

There is no scarcity and when I tell myself that I am just unshelving an old idea that can be retired right now.

Today was also a big day for challenging myself to grow in other ways, some a bit quieter than the dating noise in my head, but none the less quite present for me.

Graduate school.

I worked some more on my application.  I wrote the admissions department an e-mail with a question about the application materials needed for the program I am interested in.  I sent the link for the letter of recommendation to the mom who I used to work with who is in academics here in San Francisco and agreed to write me a letter.  I also called two different numbers at the school to make sure if the e-mail went unanswered I would still get an answer to my question.

I also requested information about how to get my transcripts sent from the University of Wisconsin, Madison, to the California Institute for Integral Studies.

And then.

I had dinner with the family.

It was so nice to catch up and see their daughter, who immediately demanded lip gloss from me.

I laughed, although not nearly as hard as when she climbed into my tennis shoes.

To be so warmly welcomed, fed, and thanked for the time I spent with their daughter and to not only receive the word from the mom that I would get that letter, they also gifted me a thank you for the time I was with their daughter.

I left in tears.

To have the ability to maintain and sustain relationships with people in my life is such an enormous gift.  They said come back and visit again, and soon, and come for Christmas Eve (my current family has invited me to Thanksgiving twice now, but I think I will be spending it in the Castro with Honey and crew), which if I don’t head to Wisconsin, I probably will stop through.

This intimacy I have developed with friends, employers, the children I work with and for, with the woman who I sit with over tea, all lead me to the burgeoning of romance, which will happen, I just have to keep practicing and letting go of the results.

Powerlessness is powerful.

Surrender does mean going over to the winning side, now doesn’t it?

Today I am winning.

 


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