Saturday, February 22, 2014

Officially "Over the Hill"

"Mom, you KNOW that the left lane is only for passing, right?" (Katie Rose to me after a few hours of driver's training, forgetting the millions of hours of driving time I have under my belt.  Does she think I'm going to kill her now?)
"Hey, Mickey!  Can you please come in here and help me get the TV to turn on?"  (Me to Mickey, after working with three different remote control devices in an effort to relax and watch Downton Abbey after a long, hard day's work)
"Honey, you sent this text to the wrong person."  (John's text to me, after sending HIM a text meant for Mickey asking him to please be watching for me out the window as I was on my way to pick him up.  It was late - 8:00pm - and my eyes were ready to close for the night - didn't want to get out of the car.)

These words and others like them consume my days - at least the part of my days that involve people.  The non-people part of my days are spent knitting, pacing, thinking, wondering, remembering.

Last night at dinner, Katie Rose mentioned a new friend at school - a cheerleader.  She felt the need to point out that this new friend wasn't a "snotty" cheerleader as I had been when I was in high school.  What???  Where in God's name did she ever get the idea that I was a "snotty" cheerleader?  I was the nicest cheerleader in all of the land!

It occurs to me - and saddens me - that my children will not ever know the full me.  In their all-consuming view of the world through the filter of themselves, they will only ever know what they experience of me.  What they know of me, on this date in time, is what they see.  Unfortunately, they see a tired, older woman who, apparently, doesn't know how to drive, can't work the TV, and has a problem with new-fangled technology. Although she has done much in her life, this woman is no longer visible to the naked eye.

We used to joke about our parents' and grandparents' VCRs flashing 12:00.  We used to roll our eyes when Grandpa Joe would get so upset by the word, "bitch" in the Hall and Oates song Rich Girl.  We used to get scared when it was time for our visit to the "old folks home" to visit Grandma Henry, because those old people were always smelly and scary and trying to escape.

The hard part in all of this, is that I remember who I was...who I am.  Yet, trying to relate that to my children backfires, as I then sound like one of those people who talk about the past all the time - you know...walking five miles in the snow to school, with hot potatoes in our mittens to keep our hands warm.  As I age, I compare.

Perhaps it is best to leave it alone.  One day they will realize that they are who they are partly because I am who I am.

I WOULD just like to state for the record, though, before I sign off today...I am not, nor have I ever been snotty!...ever!!

Driving home from dinner last night, Katie Rose was reminded of her favorite story book...Little Bunny Foo Foo.  "Yeah.  I went into your preschool classroom and was a HUGE hit as I not only read that favorite story of yours to your friends, but acted it out, too."  Bam!

Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Everybody Needs a Little Sunshine, Sometime.

One of the things I was most excited about when making the decision to move to New Mexico was that it has 300 sunny days per year, on average. isn't one if them.  What made this especially grim on this day was the fact that I am feeling lonely and really missing my husband, children and friends.

During my morning quiet time I was questioning God on His plan for us, for me.  Did I misread signs?  Did I jump ahead of His will?  As confident that I was before I left Chicago, I now wondered if that confidence was merely my desire for adventure.  As I sat in my little room in the warehouse that I share with four hippies, I prayed for something...something to let me know that I was okay...I was in The Plan.  I contemplated the words of the particular scripture I was reading this morning and one line kept popping out to me.  "Obedience to God comes before obedience to man."

What in the world?  Does my loneliness come from the fact that it has been somewhat of a struggle for me to be away from my family?  Does it stem from the fact that it seems to be difficult for John that I am so far away?  Is it "man" (albeit my family in this case) that is causing me to feel ill at ease because I feel like I'm not "obeying" them by being away from them?

My very least favorite feeling is when I am unsure if I am doing the right thing and as a result letting people down or causing them to need therapy for the rest of their life.  "Why oh why does the weight of the world rest upon my shoulders alone," she asked herself as she thought for a moment she was back in Drama class.

So, outside of my window grey skies greet me.  I decide to go outside and have a cigarette.  As I light up, I look up to the heavens.  It is there that I see the most beautiful expanse of sunny skies in a break in the clouds.  I almost wept.

I guess the lesson today matter how grey the skies may appear on first glance, there is a sunny sky above it all.


Thursday, April 4, 2013

I Forgot What it was Like

It has now been three full days that I have spent "living" in my new city and one whole day "living" in my new temporary home, The Warehouse.  Last night was my first night.  I moved in my suitcase, two boxes of stuff - crafting stuff and "memory-hang-on-the-wall" stuff- and beggar to arrange my new room.  I have never longed for some Farmhouse stuff so much until it came to making my new temporary home comfortable.

I have forgotten what it is like to have restrictions on what you can hang on the wall, or the awkwardness of living with people who aren't your family.

This morning I woke up at 5:00am.  My normal routine at home would be...pee, brush teeth, put coffe cup in microwave for two minutes, smoke outside, come back to get coffee from microwave, sit down and star my quiet contemplative time.  This is a routine I have been following for worries.  Today, I worried about ech step in the routine.  Was I up too early for everyone else in the house?  Was the microwave too loud as it was warming my coffee?  If I open the door to go outside to smoke are they going to think someone is trying to break in?  Where ARE the kitchen lights anyhow?

I managed to accomplish my routine, but it was wrought with stress and tension as I wondered what the other roommates thought and how what I was doing might affect them.

After work tonight, when I returned "home", I knew I wanted to make an effort to bond a little, even though everything in me wanted to just go up to my room, close the door and do my own thing.

One of the roomies, Keith, was staring at the fish in his aquarium.  "What in God's name are you watching for when you look at those fish?" I asked.  It could have gone either way, but he took it the way I intended it and we had a really interesting conversation about fish.

We joined the other roomies in the kitchen, who were cooking dinner and had a pretty decent bonding experience.

Tomorrow when I wake up at 5:00am, I will not be so tense as I walk downstairs, turn on the kitchen lights and microwave my coffee before going outside to have my morning cigarette.

It is as I have known all along.  Time.  It takes time.


Tuesday, April 2, 2013

The Adventure Begins

Here I sit, enjoying breakfast at the hotel.  I begin my new job in 40 minutes and I have forgotten my coat in Chicago.  Oh well...that's okay.  It's a bit warmer here in Santa Fe.

House hunting...I think I found a permanent-temporary place to live.  I've been searching on Craigslist for rooms to rent temporarily.  I took a look at a totally unconventional space last night that I fell in love with, in the spirit of adventure.  It's in a warehouse...yes a warehouse!  How cool is that?  I will be sharing the space with 4 artists, all of whom are much younger than I.  I will have my own bright room where I can hang out while I'm here sans family.  The backyard looks out onto some beautiful mountains...well...after you look past the parking lot.

I figure that it's only temporary, so why not live the adventure whilst I can.  The others in the space seem nice enough, although they are NOT the Northbrook kind of personalities I'm used to.  I am looking forward to getting to know them through their stories.

My body knows that it is closer to its roots being more west.  It's happy.


Tuesday, March 26, 2013

The "Pushpins" of our Life

If you have ever looked for houses on the Internet, you may have seen a "pushpin" on a map, indicating the location of the home for sale.  I have seen many of these "pushpins" as John and I search the maps of Santa Fe, looking for a place to live once we arrive.

Not being familiar with the area, I often zoom in and out so that I can get a better sense of where a home is in relation to familiar landmarks.  Whether I'm zoomed all the way in, or all the way out, the "pushpin" stays put right on that map, no matter what.  I can zoom out until I have an entire map of the world and the "pushpin" will be there.  I can zoom all the way in and the "pushpin" will still be there.

These last few weeks my "pushpin" of life has been staring me in the face as my life map is zoomed in as far as it can zoom.  I have been nervous, tense and worried as the zoom-in-ed-ness had me impatient and waiting.  I was waiting for a background check to clear, waiting for a medical clearance, waiting to hear a start date so that I could solidify plans here.  For me, this time was a huge lesson on trust.  I had to trust that all would be well.  This was a struggle for me - I admit that.

Now that I have clearance and an actual start date, my life map has zoomed out somewhat.  I can see that "pushpin" on a larger map.  It's the same "pushpin" that I was viewing yesterday, but I can see it in relation to a much larger life area.

It is a relief to zoom out on ones life map.  I guess the lesson I have learned is that...sometimes you have to zoom out in order to get true perspective on the "pushpins" of your life.

That is all for now.

(Side note to Julie...BAM!)

Monday, March 25, 2013

The Beginning of Goodbye

And so the week of saying "goodbye" begins.  I do not enjoy "goodbyes", not because they make me sad (I always have a contingency plan, where it's not 'goodbye'...just...'see you later'), but because they are socially awkward for me.

Perhaps this is due to the fact that I moved around so much as a child.  I was able to get used to not getting too comfortable in one place, or invest in too many close relationships.  We are all only here on a journey, after all.

This is not intended to minimize or invalidate the relationships I have with others.  This is temporal survival.  If I were to allow myself to open up to even the smallest amount of love that I feel for and from the people in my community, I would surely perish.

As it is, I believe with all of my soul that we will all be together again.  There are some that I will not see again this side of heaven.  I believe that we have all inter-connected for a reason...that because we have known each other we are better human beings.  In that inter-connectedness, we can never truly be apart.

So...know that when I say, "goodbye" this week, what that translates to, in Diane language is, "Thank you so much for being in my life and helping me to become the person I was created to be.  Even though we may no longer see each other on a regular basis, remember that we are all still sleeping underneath the same big sky...and wouldn't THAT be a great line in a song.

Diane :)

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

New blog

Hi all, I haven't posted here in a very long time and that is because I have started a new blog that is attached to The Farmhouse. "What the heck is she talking about?" you may be asking yourself. Well if you are interested in reading me babble on and on and sometimes come up with wisdom, please look over at the new blog. That is the blog that I'll be doing pretty much all of my writing and journaling and information giving from now on. I would love it if you would join me over there. Diane