Humanity

Old enough.

Shah, right.

I got my taxes delivered to the tax man.

(my aunt can now breathe more freely…)

And after doing so I walked around the downtown of the small city I live near. I love this little city. I’ve spent some of my young adulthood here. There is so much that keeps changing and so much that is still the same. I re- remembered about crazy people and eye contact vs. no eye contact. Its debatable, really. Eye contact lets them know you’re not a pushover and also, if they’re truly crazy, gives them the belief that they should talk to you.

which i do not like.

So be it. call me walled off, whatever.

I’m old enough to do what I want, right?

I opted for no eye contact today but I did return the hellos I got with a hello and a smile directed at my own feet. And I did get a fabulous coffee and a breakfast sandwich that someone else made. AND I spent some time remembering the skater boys who owned the skate shop and who were so damn cute. I imagine they’re all dads now… Their store is hella bigger than it used to be, and I’m pretty damn happy for them. I spotted the restaurant that is so good at social media stuff. It was a good time. And I drove off like a grown up, feeling so happy that my taxes are now in someone else’s hands. There is a gaping hole on my desk where the paperwork was. How brilliant. How old am I, you ask? Plenty old, I say.

But there it is. I am just old enough to feel the satisfaction of one less dead branch hanging over my tent. One less broken rung in the ladder. This is the week I replaced all the flickering light bulbs and re-hung the clothesline. These are the things. And in my days and nights when I don’t recognize them as ‘enough’, there are other things too.

There are the secretaries who call the wrong number on the medical form when they should be calling the kid’s dad. We laugh, and they get all the information from me anyhow. Because I’m the mom. Women are good, and we laugh together. I like that.

My garden is growing, in fits, and waiting is hard for me. legitimately hard. but I have a thing to do every day now when I’m avoiding a feeling or a project and its good for me, and i think the cucumber plants know my name now, so we’re all doing better for it.

And I’ll be okay about the summer. I will. (just remind me of this post, when i forget mid-july and begin to despair.)

And my tax man is already asking me questions and I am in love.

I’m definitely old enough.

love love,

kate

what an interesting photo, you say? hmm. yes. Intersections of empty. And a fairy on a frog, intersected.
Humanity

I don’t.

I don’t feel like writing about the horror of my kitchen sink, because the horror of life in America is too strong right now.

I don’t feel like telling you about online dating and heartaches and my sometimes really deep loneliness because I’m not shot in my bed.

I don’t feel like crafting some clever narrative of how funny it is to be around kids who are so damn smart because my babies and I have an obscene amount of financial priviledge and I don’t get shot and left on the street for six hours like road kill.

I don’t want to tell you how often I wonder where the right-to-lifers are when it comes to human beings, grown ones. What if the angry white texans/floridians/arkansas-ians flooded the streets in Minneapolis (Detroit, Newark, Houston, Baltimore), demanding the guns of the police? Demanding new judges who will see things their way? Demanding change at the highest levels of government because goddamnit, everyone has a right to live and killing people is one of those pesky commandments?

I don’t want to talk to you about my fucking houseplants.

black mother putting jeans on shouting baby
Photo by William Fortunato on Pexels.com
Humanity

… and taxes, motherfucker.

My mother in-law, former mother in-law, friend for 30 years, is going into hospice this month some time, if not this week. I have tried to start writing about her, and have over the years, certainly, but it is currently too raw, and she’s not dead yet, and so i want to spend my time trying to get her on the phone. Real always being preferable to memory. always. i say. my heart is wounded and throbs.

don’t you say the real is more than the memory? don’t you? the touch? the skin? the shared space? laughing? hugging?

I was there last wednesday, dropping off a lasagna and I sat and had a grilled cheese sandwich that my 88 year old father-in-law made for me when he heard I was coming over. Her memory is shot so he wasn’t at all sure I was actually coming, or what day I might be coming. We talked about my family, her cousins, death. I actually brought it up because 1. i had been thinking about my own, and 2. I think we should all talk to our elders about it. Expecting it is a whole different experience, I think, and I want to know what it is like.

I said that, for myself, I didn’t fear it, as long as I could remove my thoughts of the kids from the equation. Worrying about them ruined it all. She agreed, saying something along the lines of ‘what the hell else can you do? You die? you die!’.

I am a thousand times certain that I have loved her and been loved by her for 30 years. How lucky am I ?

Humanity

NOVEMBER NONO TEN: ten!

What is sacred?

  1. I am. me.
  2. There is so much in that, because its just today, and I might forget it tomorrow, but today I stood up for myself, and all my people are standing and applauding right now and it feels pretty damn good.
  3. My home is sacred to me. The chaos and the beauty, all the things that drive me nuts. She’s becoming a person in my life, this dwelling place, and that’s something I’ll not turn down.
  4. Life, growth, green things, living things, they are sacred. I cannot be a Buddhist but I do avoid stepping on ants, and I’m aware of the loss of the tiny. And I’m blown away by the big.
  5. The birds in the bush. Their tiny lives as big as mine.
  6. November is the month my dad died. I kept saying I didn’t want it to be an anniversary, but it is, no matter what I say. My daughter turns eight before that though, but once the party is over, I typically fall down. Time is funny, and I allow it to blow through and continue to ruffle things.
  7. Lights, lights in the darkness. Twinkle. Stride, a stridency. A candle flame in the deeps. Auden.
  8. Wind. There is something truly clarifying in it. And danger rides along as well. Maybe the mix is what brings it to the level of sacred. So often it is there, just out of sight, waiting our notice, or acting out until we stare with our jaws dropped.  
  9. Friends. The ones who always answer the phone. The ones who stand up and cheer you.
  10. Skin. Touch. Feeling the humanity of another. Being felt.

Divorce, Humanity

Right Here.

right here.

I think I wrote about this ages ago, when my dad died. BUT that was another lifetime ago, and I just tried to go look it up and find where it was,  and reading that stuff was too hard, and too foreign. The lifetimes having slipped far away down that river.

when my dad died, I was wrecked. Not only was his heart attack in my backyard, and my now former husband was giving chest compressions that kept him alive long enough for all his kids to get there to see a living body…  but the suddenness of the loss and the incontrovertible NO, HE WILL NOT MAKE IT. . . there it was, there it all was.

I found my mind racing and racing and racing, and I couldn’t get back to where I needed to be to function as myself and as the mother and householdrunner that I needed and wanted to be. it was memory, and memory and more memory world-shift and fear and grief welling and complete detachment from the people I was sharing a house with.

and oh, the racing. the fucking racing of my mind. pinging from wall to wall. a highspeed badnews montage, looped.

Quickly after the death, I drew a hand and wrote ‘RIGHT HERE’ and I don’t know if someone suggested it to me or if the HUBSJatthetime suggested it, but I hung it on the cabinet door next to the stove. I saw it multiple times a day.  and I physically put my hand in front of my face multiple other times per day. I smelled my skin. I closed my eyes.

Here I am. Here is my skin. This is all that there is, RIGHT HERE.

the circles are small. the physical space I am is all that there is. when the quakers say ‘center down’, this is how I feel, all the energies bringing me back to the RIGHT HERE.

I kept it up there during the long and painful divorcing process. Really helped when I put out the wrong number of plates, or when all I could hear was his disapproval, even after he was gone.

Somehow the hand fell off the cabinet, or I replaced it with another missive. Its been quite a few years now.

And, this week, I noticed it moving from place to place in the kitchen, showing itself in my new time of need. In this new sadness that is so familiar.

so, i’m going to put it back up. because…

HERE I AM. HERE IS MY VERY OWN SKIN. BLESS WHAT IS RIGHT HERE.

 

Right HERE hand Unwifedmotherexpletive