Tuesday, February 27, 2007

On Another Way

I will be leaving tomorrow for my Dad's memorial service. I love him too much to write about this. Most good writers get their feelings and thoughts down and come to some growth and realization as well as a beautiful written memory. I will have to write about this much later. I have many regrets and pain and just CANNOT share it. I may be a coward but I just need time. So enough on that.

Now for some random thoughts that are keeping me sane.

1. How do you think Al and Tipper's evening went and what were they thinking when they ate dinner with people who use double-sided tape to get dressed?

2. I may never retire, with today's stock market free-fall. Have you bought anything made in the United States lately? Most of my new furniture, towels and sheets came by way of China even though I purchased from U.S. firms. I guess you can't manipulate the market forever! Wonder where this leaves Bush's private retirement accounts idea?

3. I will not get a lifetime achievement award in my field (as my husband has recently gotten) when I retire unless not killing an immature twit that I work with counts as a mature gesture on my part. I am still trying very hard to kill her with kindness and this gesture deserves some type of reward, don't you think?

4. Now the US Center for Science in the Public Interest says that chain restaurants routinely serve "A 2,000-calorie appetizer. A 2,000-calorie main course. Another 1,700 calories for dessert." While I am smart enough to know the caloric dangers of eating in a restaurant and frequently split entrees or desserts with my hubby, I am a little sruprised at these numbers! Shouldn't we get a little truth in advertising on the menus? After all, this isn't a once a year visit to Roy's, my favorite restaurant.

5. Whoopee! Spring is coming. After my memorial long weekend with my family, my husband and I are escaping to Arizona using up some 'points'. Please tell me you want to see a few of the lovely photos I will take of the very unique area where I will be staying.

Saturday, February 24, 2007

Wednesday, February 21, 2007

Dealing With It

8:30 A.M. and Tabor was running late on an already full day. A morning doctor's appointment followed by a ten mile drive and two afternoon meetings. These days she had a second job as back-up for a departing colleague. Two jobs and her time was always overfilled. She wouldn't have been late except for the 6:00 AM phone call. That call resulted in several other phone calls all of which took more precious time. Time she didn't have. Also she was moving slowly and without energy because for some reason she woke up at 2:00 A.M. after just a few hours of sleep. She found herself lying in bed --wide awake. Never really got back to sleep.

The trip to the doctor's was way back in her old neighborhood. Morning rush hour was in full play and she had to squeeze her little car between two big SUVs. Although she was driving back to the old neighborhood, she found it irritating that the new buildings and road changes were confusing. This confusion seemed to happen to her more often these days, and it was irritating. She began to realize that her distracted mind needed to concentrate or she would miss the turn.

Arriving at the doctor's office 20 minutes early gave her time to make some calls to work to let people know of her changed schedule. Too much sympathy and chit chat. Just make sure that the right people get the changes. Just need to get through this day.

She liked this doctor and had gone to him for years. He asked how she was and she provided the usual 'fine.' He didn't really want to know and she didn't really want to start the conversation. Four clinical breast massages later he called the nurse into the room and Tabor took the 'position.' God this was painful this time! It felt as if he was inserting pointed knives. Tabor bit her lip as tears streamed down her face. Doc E. apologized and did try to be more gentle. Tabor commented that getting old was the pits. She knew if she didn't stop these tears they would flow like melting snow. Doc E. asked again if she was OK. Tabor smiled and winced.

It wasn't until she got to the technician who was taking her blood later that the how-are-you question was answered honestly. Tabor was surprised that she was able to say directly to this perfect stranger that her father has passed on last night. Now she had said it three times this morning. Once to her husband, once to the secretary at work and now to this perfect stranger. Since it didn't get any easier, Tabor decided she wasn't going to say it anymore.

Tabor dealt with things in the cliched fashion of not thinking about it, not talking about it, not retrospectively writing about it, not dwelling on it. It was over. The long battle of hospitals and IV's and feeling guilty because her brothers and sister and sister-in-law bore the heavy burden was passing. Tabor felt relief. But she wouldn't tell her family that. They wouldn't think her honest...just cold. She knew that she would be dealing with this in bits and pieces in years to come. But that was the only way she could swallow it right now.

Now for the call to the kids...Tabor realized she had to say it again.

Monday, February 19, 2007


Looking at the scenery from the car window as we headed down to the 'house on the rivah' we were given an interesting lesson in weather patterns. Our starting point was bitterly cold and the land was covered in about an inch of white snow covered by a crust of ice---like a white chocolate covered vanilla ice cream bar.

After we had gone about 10 miles the snow disappeared and the land was covered in a silvery glitter with dirty mounds of earth peaking through the farm fields.

Then after another 10 or 15 miles the land was clear of ice, but the trees and shrubs looked as if they had been painted with silver paint. The sun was bouncing off the sices of the branches making it look like a forest of minimilist Christmas trees.

As we reached the last ten miles, the trees resumed their normal winter gray dullness but when I looked at their base I saw broken silver bits of glass beneath the branches in a circle like a round lace petticoat.

When we reached the river, it was frozen over and mirrored even more beautifully the various sunlight angles and shades of the late afternoon. At times the view from the window was a watercolor painting. There was a small pocket at one end of the river that had not frozen over and the geese were using this area as their strategic starting and stopping point.

(By the way, Weary Hag, is back. They always come back, sooner or later...hee, hee. It is nice when friends move back into the neighborhood.)

Monday, February 12, 2007

And Life Goes On

Being responsible for a wonderful newly manufactured human being for an entire weekend is rewarding, daunting, exhausting, instructional and life-changing. He has been to our house before and didn't mind at all being there without the parental unit. (That is except for the Saturday nap time when he managed to get out of the Pac-n-play shortly after being put down. The Pac-n-play was totally upright as was Xman when I went in ten minutes later to check on him! Those of you who know what I am talking about will smile as well as gasp...the little guy is not yet two!)

Each day we spent some time outside in spite of the cold weather. He is an outside guy. My walk on saturday was just down the road. Hubby took Xman for a "boatride."

There were lots of hiding games including at least twice when one or both of us had a minor heart attack when we could not find the little tyke ANYWHERE!! He is quiet and stealth-like, a real challenge. I THOUGHT our house was a reasonable size, but when a little guy hides the house becomes huge and daunting.

Everywhere Xman went---so did Big Bear. Just like Christopher Robin.

Early on Saturday it was a real pleasure to watch him discover one of his favorite celestial bodies---the moon.

Here he is calling to his grandfather to come see this wonderful miracle.

Friday, February 09, 2007

Frivolous Friday

"Learn the best colors, bedding,
furniture, lighting, accessories
and more for creating a
hotel-inspired bed and bath »"

The above is text from a link from a HGTV email that I received yesterday. I had to read it twice to make sure that I read it correctly. Maybe I am missing something, but the last feeling I want to create in my house is that I am still on the road in that “luxury” hotel. I want a home that is inspired by me, myself and I, and doesn't reflect in any way a ‘mass luxury’ design. They also had a section on “Decorating in Red.” I’ve got news for them…that is so yesterday. Orange and burned rust is the new red and anyone with any design sense knows that!

2. We have Xman for the whole weekend. What DOES one do with a high energy 20-month-old when you can't take him outside?

3. My favorite (and only) son came to dinner last night. A big deal for me as I see him on average every other month or even less. He is working on audio-engineering some training videos for the government. The feedback to our illustrious leader from parents who have lost their children in the war is that the people who bring the news are pretty green in age and really not prepared well to handle this very difficult task. So now some new training videos are being created. My son says they are actually pretty well done. Wouldn't it be nice if he got a paycheck for some other type of training video---any other?

4. My week at work has been exhausting. It is either boredom or a flat-out race in this job of mine. I hope I am still alive by retirement time. Several personnel changes have put everyone on edge.

5. I accidentally sent an email to the wrong person about picking up a new server for deployment in our office. The other person was a little panicked because they had heard through the rumor mill their program might be shut down and they thought we were getting their server! She was relieved to learn it was just my crappy typing.

6. I got some bad news in the mail yesterday...but can't write about it...not just yet. Therefore, I am writing about everything..but


Wednesday, February 07, 2007

Tuesday, February 06, 2007

The Oldest Profession

Well, while it is the oldest "job" and really is a profession there is yet some discussion on whether it is 'paid.' I am talking about motherhood.

I have been reading and watching someone in blogdom go through a painful breakup of a marriage involving small children. (Blogdom is like the rabbit hole...you fall into another's honest life and it becomes as important as the lives of those you talk to each day.) Like all marriages her's is complicated and there are many sides to the story including the sides of the children. She has decided to get a divorce and that decision is neither right nor wrong. Since this decision involves tremendous pain and sacrifice, I know that she has thought long and hard about this and feels that it is the BEST decision for her--and for those she cares about--maybe even including her future ex. While I have never gone through a divorce (and therefore probably cannot really write about it) I always thought of it like the amputation of a limb. Sometimes the limb is so diseased and painful that the owner does not miss it nor its usefulness for any length of time once the initial pain and inconvenience are gone. The fear and pain of the amputation is replaced by a deep breath of freedom and safety.

For others, this limb is loved and useful but requires too much bracing and support and therapy to keep it working and the owner just becomes tired --- muscle tired, bone tired. So they carefully and intellectually proceed to get the surgery. It is preceded by therapy and advice from EVERYONE around them. They know, even without hope, though, that the divorce is the final necessary act.

In so many cases marriages dissolve because the woman loses herself. She views the marriage like any very important job. She puts in 125%. But there is no promotion and certainly no change in status in this world. She works 24 hours a day seven days a week and doesn't think about down time or her needs. She is going to be the best G--D--- wife ever and her kids are never going to want for support and sustenance and her husband is going to be treated like the breadwinner king that he is. This is a particularly difficult role to play if you are also working 40 hours a week as many women are. Of course, hubby is in shock when the big D rears it ugly head. Men (and yes, I generalize here) are not perceptive in relationships and tend to ignore subtle and blatant clues. He thought that the pure love was the only currency necessary. He thought she really was passionate about all of this stuff. Clean toilets, perfectly crafted couponed shopping, child psychology on call, and of course, sex on call. Few men are raised to look at marriage the same way they would look at a business partnership. I admit I didn't raise my son that way.

And then as the children grow and she gets a little space and down time she has moments of clarity that she lost her real self somewhere along the way. She realizes that the woman her husband married is deeply buried in a half-lidded body and an ugly gray sweatsuit. She finds there are things she would like to change in the marriage, but she doesn't have the necessary power or energy to make the changes, that is, until she makes the BIG change.

I wish there was some magic formula to make marriages work for those intelligent people. Some perfect therapy or medicine or chant.

Oh well, it is not the end of the world in the grand scheme of things. It is the beginning of a new life and both will stretch and grow and learn. And both will look back on this time, and if they are mentally healthy, they will view it as a lesson and it will make them better people.

Your turn.

Friday, February 02, 2007

Sunday Morning

Sunday morning

The first misty birth of today’s morning
Brushes the smell of warm sun on the blanket’s edge.
A distant feathered cry of elation invades the mind’s smoky eye.
I wait.
I do not open my eyes and command the end of floating
Between the sheets in this transformation in time.
It is still an addictive mystery,
The rare alone moment when nothing is demanded
And no one sings a song of need.
There is yet again the promise of new.
No footprints on the snow or sand.
No expectations not yet met.
It is another chance for a day of peaceful challenge.

(Post Script: I deny the existence of a Superbowl today.)


Dancing and gnashing and wailing
Waiting and learning and dying
Arising for breath in the next ring

Around and around and around
Halting and jerking and moving
Pausing and breathing and staring

Act I and Act II and Act III
Predetermined and predicted and preceded
Missing the answers already