I’m good at…

What are you good at?

In my mind this week, I’ve been writing a whole post on what I’m bad at, because I’m awful at so many things. Like breakups, and shame. So bad at them, and also, the math. But I need to switch it, don’t I? Can I live like that?

I’m good at looking at things and appreciating them. the shape, the line, the light. The beauty in the minute, the large, the fantastical and the mundane.

Sometimes I am good at capturing it in type.

I’m good at being with kids, making them feel loved. I’m good at making brownies, from a box, but good at it, still.

I’m way fantastic at self-deprecation, which needs work, surely.

I’m good at making clutter, and tidying it, and letting go of things. I’m good at staring quietly off into the corner, good at making the most of a pregnant pause.

I was good at being pregnant. Feeling my rotund self amidst the madness of the rest of it.

I am good at color, filling the house with the things of whatever the season, color beyond belief. The circus-ing of things.

I am good, mostly. Though it makes my eyes well up, I think it is true. I try, I try to be right with the world, this green and blue breathing thing, full of creatures.

I am good at reading c.s. lewis, and good at ignoring the bits I don’t like.

I’m good at being stubborn. Oh yes. Another problematic one, but still, so good.

I’m good at making baked ziti. And collecting santas.

I’m good at brewing nice coffee. I’m good at growing things, tending things, nourishing things.

I’m good at piling on blankets, and wood, and sweaters. I’m good at feeding the dog, the cat and soon, the baby chicks.

I’m good at seeming to lose control and reining it back in. reeling sometimes, in all the ways, another thing I am good at.

I’m getting better at saying no. the opportunities to practice coming more often lately.

I’m good at being cozy. I’m good at needing so little, despite the ‘so much’ around me.

I’m good at dreaming. I’m good at making do.  

A good ten minutes of freewriting, that’s all that was. Thank you Maddie and Pippa. We all should do a little focused action on what we are good at. We . ARE. GOOD.


Despite our best plans…

Buying a car.

I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t perseverating on it all the time, buying a car. I am. I really am. I’m ceaselessly looking up used cars and reviews and a whole lot of other stuff I am deeply immersed in temporarily. I’m making a male friend come with me each time, to get better prices. I’ve only been to one lot so far, but it was pretty damn tough to get them to look at me. I also know that all of this is information I do not want in my head for any longer than it need be there. I also miss my dad a lot. He’d keep me on the straight and narrow. It does actually make it harder, the time I spend missing him. I don’t want to get pissed off about something so fruitless.

If you have a weird job life, it is hard to get a loan.

I get it. I mean, be careful who you loan money to! I can tell everyone left front and center that my mortgage is MORE THAN PAID by child support and alimony, and they still won’t give me a loan. Which means, my friends, and i’m not even sure that this is a complaint yet, that I am looking at cars below ten thousand dollars, (well, up to 15) and figuring out how to make it work with resources cobbled.

And truly, when i say i’m not sure this is a complaint, I think about continuing on with minimal to no car payments. no further debt. no anchor pulling me down into forever and ever trapped below. And, the last car I bought was when married, relying on someone else’s income, sized to fit three growers and all their buggies, and now i can get something that is more suited to ME. . . and now I will be relying on my very amazing own.

and I can, and that is that.

Yes, there will be car repairs. surely. But it won’t feel that bad to not have another bill right now.

I don’t like how I am around money. Buying a car has brought much crap to the surface, globs of it burbling around. I don’t trust how I want to draw attention to myself in the struggle. It occurred to me that I should add my venmo somewhere in here and leave it there. There is something in it, a lurking gollum, like a gambler who says its just for kicks, but has that look in their eye. I’m not sure I trust myself not to make it seem like a bigger deal, just to pull on a heartstring. This is abhorrent. There is a lot in here. I am suspiciously comfortable with the ‘its okay to help me’ routine. I mean, it is okay, but not like this, this feels salesman-y, and I can see what that is like, and how it feels, and it can’t be me. *And it makes everything easier if there is someone to blame, so let’s drag out the old lameass ex to run him through the mud a couple times too. Shall we? Sigh. There is still work to be done.

If it occurs to you to give me money, please make a donation to something women-centered in your local area. There are women in much greater need than I am. I’m going to buy a car. I will not be without.

So there. Wish me strength in navigation and a strong brush with good luck.



white animal skull on top of vehicle
Yeah baby!! Photo by pascal claivaz on

All jokes aside, I kind of wish this car were an option.


Times are long. Nuts.

This weekend my cousins and aunts and uncles gather here. It was a yearly tradition to gather somewhere and the past few were here, before covid. Its been a long time now, three years maybe, since we gathered.

i’m excited. really pleased and happy. i like my whole family, even those who are so different from me. and they are, really, different.

my kids will be home, and that always makes me feel more myself, which I deeply like. (hear that? I deeply like myself.)

the other side of the coin: dishwasher broke. its brand new. literally within the past month. (yes, i know i should call someone) septic broke. true feelings about my house came out, when my mom recommended a team of four to come clean it. i have ignored this, and cleaned, but it makes me worry about judgement, because my family is really good at ‘the look’. car broke, has no heat and every time it starts i am happy, but also very stressed. (Septic cleared for the moment; all is well for thirty plus guests) I’m finding this side of the coin exhausting. truly exhausting. like, i’d like to sleep through it.

(this is not a sign of liking myself, by the way. not at all.)

and there’s all the people missing, of course. and i made my mother-in-law’s cranberry relish and i’ll put it out on the table and my heart will cry a little. and the photo of my dad has been cleaned off to look presentable. (because thats the kind of cleaning i care about. there’s probably a whole lot of doghair in the wrong place somewhere.) I’m good with details and not the big picture, i guess. But i’m just going to trust that people love me and can live without insulting me or my house for a day. We’ll see. I’ll be okay.

i’m really looking forward to seeing my people. we are a family that gives fantastic hugs, and i’m going to revel in it. a couple of my cousins remind me so much of my dad that its almost painful, and i’m going to revel in that too. while crying a little more on the inside.

and then it will be done, and I’ll still be okay.

There is more love to be found out there, I just have to look for it. Its all mixed up with a whole bunch of things right now. A nut bowl. Who’s going to try the Brazil Nut? Really.

Deep sigh. Going to make a lasagna now, and clean something small, or big, depending on how I’m feeling.

or maybe i’ll read my book. its a mexican soap opera of a thing. definitely escaping. so be it.

lovelove you. hope your heart is full of love, one way or another, no matter what nuts you might have eaten along the way.


close up of a mix of nuts
Photo by Mark Stebnicki on

up and down.

i woke up with a headache in the middle of the night. took some medicine and went back to bed, only to have the stupidest dream ever with so many little beautiful bittersweet details; I woke up angry and depressed about my inability to move away from the old stuff. The house i was in belonged to my ex. I’m not sure why i was there, but it ended with my screaming about him having a beautiful life because mine was sacrificed for it. I wasn’t even screaming at him, I was just screaming.

hooowee. thats fun. Fantastic way to wake up. Still have the damn headache too.

but, the house was beautiful, so much so… and full of beautiful things. I loved it, there were characters all over the place, beautiful people, outfit changes. it was a franny and zooey thing, a gatsby thing, a period piece absolutely resonating with the energy of my beloved mother-in-law. Opulence, decadence, lavishness. In every corner was something you could get lost in. Tiny meditation spots, tapestry, corners and nooks and books and things of metal and mahogany. Candlelight and natural light and colors and layer upon layer of art, all of it. Embroidery, Noel, so much embroidery. There were winding stairs and linens and conversations all around. It was her, in house form.

Her son was there in all his glory, the outfit changes were his. It was sour for me, all in all, and I think i’m upset about the sourness. I wish I could go back and ignore the man for all the wonder of the place. I look around my house that I love, and I love it, and it is far too sprawling to have that level of decoration. It would eat me alive. But I miss and crave my mother-in-law. Her love for her people was lavish, and decadent. And I miss that. The entire dream may have been much more about grief than I initially thought. Her son just the clown of old costumes.

And I am alive.

I have not been sacrificed in a failed marriage. I am alive, and some might say I am thriving. Working my ass off in doubtful causes, but splendidly spilling over with life. . . Am i the set designer or am I a player? I don’t really know honestly. I certainly spend a lot of time accommodating changes in the script.

But that’s the game, isn’t it? Everything always changes, because people don’t stay on script. ever. neither does anything else. not the animals, the weather, the patterns of the clouds, nothing. There is no script, and we’re all strutting and fretting. (well, i’m fretting. )


Here’s to finding more opulence in our lives, finding the beauty that already surrounds us, and not being afraid of clowns.




Believe me. It’s everywhere.

self-effacing humor.

oh god, i am so good at it. making less of myself, in a very funny way. always so funny. if there weren’t funny there, you might get concerned, and god knows, i don’t want any attention.

i was pawing through the junk corner to find a notebook to make a grocery list. It used to be just a junk drawer, but things have spread.

I found one, and in flipping to an empty page, i found some old writings, from back when i had time and a brain that was fluid and beautiful. there is no date but subject matter declares it to be several years old.

i’m going to quote from my own self here, there is no way to humbly quote oneself, so give me a pass today. context: i must’ve had an ugly/tense exchange with the ex via text, and was having the ugly/tense reaction privately in ink. It is not funny, as private doesn’t need that bit, does it? but I do love the imagery. Here it is:

Damnit. the time flows already, that wine river of regret. these things i want to be finished with, the list goes on and murders me firsthand with little to no hesitation.

the ex of course, i want to be done, to have no time in which i still have to cajole and negotiate with his ego.

to be done with doubt, to be done and finished and finally grown up, to be finished. my impatience is legion, doubts sway my progress and i fold and fold and fold in, like origami layered, no swan but a tank of layers, a solid block of onion skin. seems so doubt enters when i am self-effacing.

self-effacing. what a term. a thinning one does to oneself and how transparent will i allow myself to become as i go?


Right? it seems an opposition, this tank of folding and self-effacing humor, but it isn’t… its just another game of hiding. Ooh boy, yes.