In Progress

In an instant one post can send you into a tailspin. Scrolling thru the mulch of social media, and coming across an innocuous post celebrating something or other in someone else’s life, far from my own world, I confronted myself in a way that struck me with fear.
moon_card

My feelings, digging deep into my psyche, in an instant, told me my path was a beeline to Loserville.

So conscious of the negative feelings, I held myself, trying to figure out what to do with them. Conscious of fear’s growing depth, with a feigned denial I continued forward, posting a few ‘hellos’ on various friend’s Facebook pages.

When uncomfortability continued, despite my efforts, I then switched to Instagram as a getaway, tring to shift up my point of view. Although I moved deliberately thru the mundane, my body quivered, with regret, fear, and loneliness rolled into one giant pit in my stomach.

After realizing the computer was only making things worse, I texted a query to someone about their apartment hunting. We started up small talk about the business of searching for a place to live, and while winding down, my text blurted a — DO YOU HAVE TIME TO TALK? I NEED TO SPEAK TO SOMEONE.

A message of such intense magnitude quickly garnered a “call” response. As soon as the voice on the other end of the phone said hello, I knew that I would be OK. I believed because that person believed in me, when I could not believe in myself. They loved me, in some odd but incredible way,  and that sense of connection, helped me to right size myself.

I’ve always been good at talking to myself, and grew to celebrate my solitude. Tonight however, the power of conversations, of talking things through with people you can trust, became the very medicine to reconnect with my true best self.

My dilemma is that I need people, yet in so many ways, constantly reject them at the same time.

I recently finished a fantastic writing group with amazing individuals. We found a safe space to open up our craft to each other, and in the process I made new friends. Small collectives binding each of us by our common purpose, but not forums of indoctrination. Working as a group, our support of one another provided each a needed sounding board. Here a new voice emerged from within me, which tempered my tenacious arrogance, while at the same time, allow me celebration of my individuality. So exciting, yet sad to end.

The picture catalyzed the fear of losing those I shared my heart with, as if the emptiness that followed became an invisible, impenetrable wall shutting those very people out.

Fear must be stopped. The solution rests upon faith it can be stopped. While the place of becoming grazes my horizon, the only foundation that must persist is to stay in the game. If one stays, and remains open to building sober references, then overcoming eventually wins out.

Switching Things Up

tortoise and hare

Taking one’s time at figuring out the next step in a situation is not a bad, or weak, thing to do. On the contrary, moving slowly with major changes allows for a greater opportunity to have things be more successful. In this age of fast tracking information, and constant gratification through internet feeds, the old road of the tortoise still has ground.

In the beginning of my life in academia, I took on whatever task I could fit into my schedule, which meant each day was filled with multi-tasking, and late night sessions to complete an assignment ready for submission the next day. There was little time for play, and if there were extra moments, those belonged to my daughter. As a result, the marriage failed, and gaining my freedom just became a greater opportunity to get more done, in as little time possible. I was the “hare” in the race.

I competed with myself, through the eyes of others. A good decade, and then some, older than the average student; married then divorced; a single mom on welfare, while very insecure about academic writing; these essential elements of me only fed my desire to make good. Determined, I set out to become something that was shortchanged right from the beginning of my life. Success.

I created a competition for myself, which shaped my approach to everything I set my mind on.  As my children grew, and have slowly left the home nest, the hare eventually became exhausted; tempered down from mediating academic and domestic life. The creative flame, which once burned bright with passion, although dulled over time, continued a low, hidden light in the shadows. Slowly the tortoise came to be. So slow that she grew into grey.

So as the ages come to the salt and pepper phase, I am blessed with switching it up. Starting the race again, in competition on an unknown playing field, with eyes wide open, and fears in check. Like the students in college, some 35 years my junior, we are both leveled by hearing our words give import to fictional moments in time, showing loves, jealousies, insecurities and sometimes death.

There are no visuals, no lecterns to lecture behind, or advertising of a portrait. All these things would expose the greyed novice and feed the bias of audiences. Blind to the writer, the audience and performers speak whether my truth is real or fodder for what they see, not who made it. Knowing age compromises, or blurs the lines of acceptable art.

So, a new decision, long in the making, has switched things up. I show up each week, hoping to find some inner humbled light shining on a jewel, hoping my words see the place, and understand the psyches. Words that for so many years failed me — so I sought out others with similar talents, as a way of turning up the light burning inside.

The maker, or builder, of tableaus creates images that move on a stage. I sit as this computer, marking when the curtain rises, and at the same time, for this moment in a life’s journey, I can more confidently choose when the curtain falls.

Reflection on Downtime

Photo on 7-20-14 at 1.09 PMNot sure how the times pan out as we roll along this republican joy ride; however I am sure of my feelings of depression, which sit in the very back row of my room, veiling forward over each conscious notion of hope.

To get thru the bleak flash that sneaks in during the day, I focus on putting one foot in front of the other, and not worrying in that very moment what is beyond where my feet stand.

The pall that hovers affects the way I interpret my life’s daily reflection. Today, questioning writing dirty tricks. Wondering why I ended up standing in this limbo spot; contemplating whether there is another spot I should be in: or should the conversation be something else which I cannot see or have been excluded from.

Am I a casualty of clearing the swamp of UN-notables? Should I be content with my mediocrity, and see my creative as just another self-indulgent grandiose hobby? The fear of fear plays tenacious tricks that never seem to let the thinking remain in any place of contentment. Stay on the move, traveling forward  thru the delusion to safe ground, is consciously to conscious.

I have to re-affirm that the next mountain is right around the corner, bordered by the sea of opportunity. I enjoyed sailing on the masthead with my spade flag, and want to continue the ride across unexplored oceans and byways.

Upon giving name to this angst, I realize my guttural voice – that which the stars aligned from inception – always there – was preserved by my years of neglect and brewing, and re-imagined and re-born by recovery from the debauchery. I try not to be afraid of myself, or worry about acceptance. But I worry anyway. In the end, my intellectualism understands that me is me; you are you; and they are the others. Yet only one sits in the chair and types.