for your passion….for your heart….let it rip….and then rip some more.
Thank you Janis.
for your passion….for your heart….let it rip….and then rip some more.
Thank you Janis.
Twelve years ago my world flipped around, me like a cat in a dryer….a sturdy Maytag, adament on keeping me tumbling for some time….
Twelve years ago my mom died.
Kathryn Royer Vogel Myers Banta Richards Richards Vogel, left the physical plain and I was catapulted into ‘adulthood’.
Feeling her soul leave her body was one of the most incredible experiences of my life. She had put herself into hospice on Sunday, I flew in on Monday or Tuesday and she died the next day, after waiting for my sister-in-law, Shelly, to return from Germany.
All the people she loved were present, the very way I’d like to die, (I think). She had said good-bye to a great many people, aunts, uncles. She opened her morphine influenced eyes to blink at Miles, my nephew, her grandson, (their favorite thing to do together was to go out and eat a big steak, followed up by a hot fudge sundae).
Kitty’s body had shriveled over the several months after an invasive operation meant to take care of a ‘spot’ that might cause an annuerism. I don’t know all the specifics, only that at 74 years old the surgeons cut her from the top left part of her body through the bottom right, much like you might when slaughtering a cow. It was invasive beyond measure and she never recovered. During her recovery she shared with me that she felt like a yard sale, her parts scattered about.
And then today, today….I had the opportunity to visit with two people who I care for very, very much….two people who in secret ways have made a significant impact on me….playing a variety of roles in my life. Today marked a noticeable expansion time for me….I connected some scattered dots, strengthened some connections and drew a line across a turbulent river with a rope, a rope that I’ll hold onto as I keep my focus keenly on my goals.
And I have many goals and no they aren’t small, but gargantuan and meaningful to me. And they are both what fuel me and what I need to feel full.
To feel support in your world is like having a fan applied to your fire….it can only grow.
I am thankful for friends, challenges we experience, heartache at times, soul ache too….I’ve been all around the map and am happy today, to be here, with people who matter to me, to feel my flexibility of spirit and my strength of heart.
I know who I am and there’s something to that.
Thank you to the people who matter and for what they see in me when I can’t.
I ask only how I might extend my love back to them.
Every so often, a person enters your life and makes a boom of a difference.
Pat Sullivan was one of those women for me, (I’ve only had a few) and I will be forever grateful for her presence in my life. At 83 years old she’s as full of piss and vinegar as I might ever remember.
She’s dedicated her life to helping young women blossom and the affection felt for her runs through many a heart all over the world.
She cast me as Annie Sullivan in ‘The Miracle Worker’ in 11th grade and changed my life forever.
Patricia Sullivan was truly the MIRACLE WORKER and my thanks and gratitude run wider than a Cinemascope Kansas sky.
Money was raised, and glasses too, at the Jeanette Rankin High Hat Tea. A sunny day in Athens with hope of more deserving women being awarded seed money to advance their educations!
Lovely really. And oooh….me, well, First Place Winner for the Most Creative Hat award with my ‘The Many Faces of You!’ hat!! (Frankly it was really rather bizarre and silly)!
I’m blushing!! Everyone so sophisticated and in I come with my garish, flashy hat. (See below)!
Here’s to people doing good for others….and this group does VERY good things. If you’re looking for a cause to help women in need….worthy, WORTHY women in need. Check them out. Jeanette Rankin Foundation.
Thank you to Sue Lawrence, Executive Director of the JR Foundation and her entire terrific team. Well done indeed!
Alan Rickman’s portrayal of Colonel Brandon in Jane Austin’s ‘Sense and Sensibility’ is legendary. His absolute affection and devotion to young and naive Marianne, (played by Kate Winslet), is heart wrenching, especially as he watches her waste her attention with the dashing and unworthy Willoughby.
And then Daniel Day Lewis, good Lord he’s the epitome of ‘manly’ in his role in ‘Last of the Mohicans’. Fighting for what he feels is good and true, a warrior with no fear, passionate in a way that, oh please God, let that kind of passion, care and attention to a woman truly exist somewhere on the planet! Damn!
Or for that matter, a woman holding a man so dear.
Both great actors.
I DO believe that life can be more beautiful than fiction. Why not?
Just daydreaming a spell!
I love calendars and maps and greatly value rituals. I create them for all kinds of events: the start of a business, the moving into a house, marriages for sure, a year of this, a month of that, the death of a pet, a birth, a divorce, the dog gets a bath, my friend gets a haircut. Life is for celebrating and memorializing. The end of a crummy year, the start of a better one! I also like a ritual for clearing of energy in a space that has been seeped in negativity. It works. Burning candles, incense, saying little prayers, (I’ll sometimes dance if no one is spying on me), music for sure and sometimes I boink on a little drum someone gave me because it’s fun and feels right.
I’ll clearly be one of those crazy old ladies who has 16 cats, living alone eating soup for dinner, and drinking sherry at dusk while I walk my grounds, talking to the flowers I’ve planted like they’re my children. The kind of old bat that intrigues the neighborhood kids who wheel their bikes silently up my drive, with overgrown catawba vines shading their way, to take a peek at what that nutty, red headed old bag might be up to! Nice image!
Back to rituals…I make up things to do, take things from old traditions, American Indian traditions being my favorite, (though the Nordic folks have some interesting rituals related to the sea that I relish). I’ll read about curious ceremonies from dusty books found in back corners of used book stores. It’s all in the intent I suppose.
I attended my friends memorial service today, a beautiful ritual it was. So many people came to celebrate her life, her presence in theirs. We all cried and laughed at the many lovely stories that were shared. She was fun, funny, inventive, nutty as a fruitcake in some ways and smart as a whale (they’re smart) and pretty much a spontaneous free spirit. She could do so many things. We met at a dance class many, many years ago….modern dance, with all that Martha Graham falling across the floor stuff going on. We’d laugh and laugh at how inept we were compared to the REAL dancers. She was so much fun.
There were hundreds of people in attendance as she was adored by many and touched so many hearts. She was affectionate, kind and passionate, about all manner of things. Though this friend was often in and out in my life, in terms of hanging out together, we were certainly in one another’s hearts as friends, very dear friends, spoke frequently and emailed more. Her hugs would last that extra moment that always made you feel special and adored and she could whip up the best minestrone soup I’ve ever tasted. She was messy which drove me nuts and I’d always straighten up her house when she wasn’t looking…..she could care less, and I loved that about her. She was so un-neurotic. (Take it from an obsessive neurotic who craves structure yet runs from it). Go figure. (A part of this new year’s resolution).
Her memorial was as unconventional as she was. We all held little candles in a tiny church which she loved and some musician pals played some great music. She was a beautiful, beautiful person to me. We openly expressed our gratitude and affection for one another, we’re just that way….and I loved that about her. She showed me in many ways how to be a friend, a true friend and to not hold back how I felt, whether I was upset or just wanted to tell her how much I loved her as my friend. I value that, (though it’s often gotten me in trouble with folks who aren’t used to such open expression). That’s okay. It’s all about the intent. We weathered a few storms together, some ups and downs, which only strengthened our bond. I loved her dearly.
She was clearly a ‘rocking chair pal’, full of truth, (and would tell it to you…), beauty, a grace that inspired and uplifted me. I am so grateful for her presence in my life, (and for teaching me to juggle fire and walk on my hands), and for always being an example of integrity and most of all, for always being my champion, cheerleader and trusted allie!
Love to you Josie…I’ll always be with you and always be here should you need me. Always.
I learned a boatload today and I feel all the growth pains. At the moment it feels just awful. I know I have angels who swarm around and protect me (from myself mostly) and who make sure I get a speeding ticket (today) to make sure I don’t have a crash and kill myself. They know I have ‘miles to go before I sleep.’ The lessons are coming like artillary fire….and I’m somehow still here.
I am recalling a conversation I had with a friend, possibly 6 or 7 months into knowing one another. This friend said, ‘you’ve never disappointed me.’ I responded that, ‘I will.’ Not intentionally of course, but it happens with folks we care about from time to time.
The ones who stay despite at least SOME disappointments, are maybe the keepers.
I have maybe three close, friends, all different in how they interact in my life. I think they all might one way or another die for me. Take that metaphorically or physically.
With regard to physically taking a hit for me, I’d prefer they wouldn’t as I couldn’t live with the guilt….so just let me die please….I’ll be fine!…(though 2 of them would clearly find ways to save BOTH of us, they are just THAT good).
Being ultra perceptive, these three friends know me very, very well, my heart, where I’m weak and apparently where I’m strong, (I’m still learning about that part of me). I’m floored, honored really by their friendship and support of me.
One friendship is just a year old though has the profile to be a ‘rocking chair’ pal, though I don’t think we’ll be messing about much in rocking chairs. My love and loyalty was tested today. I inadvertently threw this person, who is so dear to me, who I hold closely in my heart, under the bus.
I didn’t mean to, was merely thoughtless and cowardly probably, afraid to piss someone else off who I frankly don’t care for one bit. Someone who knows me not at all and who is self serving and not very savvy. It was poor judgment on my part. I wasn’t thinking before pressing that dangerous SEND button. My unsavvy ploy didn’t work as intended. Transparency and truth I realized is always the best choice.
After realizing my error, I immediately consulted with my best friend 2Lu. She’s always honest with me and loves me from stem to stern. I’ve not ever had a friend like her. I rely on her frank assessments. My trust in her is off the charts. I asked her, ‘if I’d hurt your feelings or inadvertently threw you under the bus, would you forgive me and keep your heart open to allow me to continue to earn your friendship?’
‘I’d have forgiven you before you did it.’ I had no words but got all teary as I seem to be over-the-top emotional this week.
I aspire to be as loving, thoughtful, understanding as my few dear friends. They’re smart too….(AND good looking)! Whether they feel exactly the same about me matters not, I must say my heart is filled with so much love for them. I can’t help it and am not exactly sure why, but it just is. It is overflowing, like bread dough in a bowl with too much yeast. It just continues to grow.
So today, I get to practice the hardest forgiveness of all…..of myself. I’d rather die than be disloyal or unkind, would jump under a bus for my few friends…though today my actions looked far the contrary.
Later this evening, 2Lu shared with me, ‘in order to change, you need to hurt and be sober.’ Think about it, it’s true. She runs DUI schools. She knows.
I am both hurting and sober today. I’m also filled with gratitude that they, and the angels who flutter about me, showed up when they did. TRULY!
I’m but a mere crag without their reflection of and confidence IN me.
The Times They Are A Changin
Come writers and critics
Who prophesize with your pen
And keep your eyes wide
The chance won’t come again
And don’t speak too soon
For the wheel’s still in spin
And there’s no tellin’ who
That it’s namin’.
For the loser now
Will be later to win
For the times they are a-changin’.
Bob Dylan 1963