Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Underwear, underwear, wherefore art thou sweet underwear….

Yes, I awoke on Tuesday morning to find my underwear right there on my sunny block, on the sunny sidewalk, and it got me thinking about all those underwear stories.

Here goes…

I will never forget the time Amber told me the story of a woman throwing out her old under things in a spring cleaning. That afternoon she came home and her young daughter said loud and clear for everyone on the street to hear, “Look, mommy, your underwear!” pointing to her undergarments strewn all about the street. That is what would happen in New York, your trash was pillaged for finds, and often left scattered about. After hearing that one, I was always careful about what I threw out and how. I made sure the personal things were in the same bag as smelly food and cat litter. That generally kept the gleaners away. 

Back in the day, when I was a snotty punk rock sex symbol with Bridgette Bardot hair, a tiny dress, bare feet and a 1964 Gibson SG I used to say on stage “Everyone who is here to see my underwear can go home, because I am not wearing any.” Ah yes, to be young and subversive.

Once on a cross-country trip with a pal, I got out of the car in the parking lot of the one nice restaurant we went to the whole trip. I had on high heel mules and a tiny suede skirt that I had made, held together by a safety pin. As I stood in the gravel lot, I sneezed and the pin pooped and I stood there in my heel and underwear.

Then there are the volumes of stories I can’t tell…..

Till next time dear ones.

Friday, February 24, 2012

love yourself, brothers and sisters

I used to want the person who shot the arrow to heal the wound.

That is why I would recreate bad relationships again and again. “Just fix it, motherfucker.” I always thought that they were the problem, but it was me. It always is.

If I could just… and, man, I came soooo close. I got all of my lovers to give me more than they could give any one else, but it still wasn’t enough. They could never heal the wound, never, they could never fix it, ever, they could only contribute to it. What a horrific cycle to be caught in.

If I could just, but I couldn’t, so one day I finally stopped trying.

Universe is the best parent I could ever have. It taught me everything I ever needed to know, at the pace I could handle. Everything happened when it was supposed to. Everything prepared me for all of this and more, my beautiful life. Everything in my life is working perfectly towards my ultimate good. What a great cycle to live in.

I have everything I need. I am sooo lucky.

If you find yourself in a painful predicament of wanting, and hoping and repeating, just know that we got your back, and you can be free. You can do it.

Love yourself, sisters and brothers, ‘cause if not you then who?

Thursday, February 16, 2012

come back

I once held onto the leg of a guy who was trying to leave me and tried to stop him. A long time ago. So long ago that it is funny now. I used to come back to these bad relationships again and again till I learned what I needed to learn.

Now instead of coming back to the pain I try to practice coming back to the way out of the pain.

When I really believe that you are “wrong” and I want everyone to know it and I want to prove it and I feel justified and I really believe that I have the proof and I am “right” then I am supposed let it go and “be willing to feel my feelings.” The feelings are usually hurt, pain, sadness, grief, and/or anger. Come back to your feelings, again and agin.

The temptation to make you see, let everybody know, prove it, and get reparations is a battle, a war, a losing battle actually, a place to try to fix ourselves by changing the outside, a way to circumvent the heart and stay in the brain and the ego, a recipe for disaster.

This is true no matter the size of the injustice that befalls a person.

What ever injustice you are holding onto, whatever one, you can let it go if you are willing to feel your feelings. Feel your grief and let go of the perpetrator. By focusing on the cause of the pain, you are hurting yourself. By wishing bad on the causer, you are hurting yourself. Put down those heavy heavy suitcases full of shit, resentment, blame, and be free. Focus on how you feel and be free. Cry as much as you need to and be free. It takes time and it is not easy but the road to freedom is seldom easy.

No pain has ever lessened by proving someone “wrong”. That is theirs to work out, not ours.

It is horrible to realize this for the first time. To get the proof or the validation only to discover that it does nothing for the pain.

Forgiveness does not mean that what someone did was ok. It only means that I do not feel like carrying it around with me. I do not feel like making my life any worse than it might be by lugging around heavy garbage-y thoughts about someone else. Keep your garbage, I release you. I just need to feel my feelings and cry and be comforted and that has nothing to do with the person that wronged me. And please make sure you get lots of comfort.

I am writing this, like everything else I write, because I need to hear it. I may know it, but that does not mean that I do not forget it all the time. I still need to practice coming back to it again and again, just like we practice coming back to the breathe again and again in meditation.

I keep coming back, not to pain, to the practice of freedom from it.

As for the song…oh! The chorus is brilliant!!!! "when you’re alone, the going gets rough, come back come back come back, I’ve had enough."

Friday, February 10, 2012

Don't fight it, feeeeel it

I was going to post this short paragraph:

It is so much easier to do the wrong thing than to do the right thing. It seems like it is a great idea because it is easy and easy should feel good, yes? But then when you go the easy “wrong’ route, it feels so much worse. But that is not all, no that is not all said the cat. Then it is sooo much harder to fix the error, restore the situation, get your freedom back. That is why they say, do the right thing.

Don’t fight it, feel it. Feelings are the way through.

But then i pulled up this F*ing great version of this song and i must write about it:

Sam F*ing Cooke! thank you good souls on the internet who bothered to post this. i love this version of this song, the intro, his intro, the way the band comes in, suprisingl, effortlessly sliding over you, getting into you. i love the audience participation, the GROOVE!!! I love his voice, the words. Who was at this show? How can they even stand it. i have the vinyl of the whole set somewhere, but i am just dancing with joy to be able to pull this up and share it. Don't fight it, people, FEEEEL it. If i've said it a million times, let me say it again, don't fight it, don't fight it, baby, feel it.

Friday, February 3, 2012

Cats, Babies and Neighbors

I would feel angry at parents who talked about how their pets became second-class citizens after they had kids. My heart would break for the, in my mind, neglected animals. My pets were my babies and I loved them so hard and took excellent care of them and debted for them when they needed medical care and fed them the best foods and considered them part of my family.

Then I became a parent, and yes, the baby has to come first. The change in our relationship with the cat is subtle, nothing dramatic. We still take care of him and his needs but just do not have the same amount of free time to hang out and dote. We can be petting him but if my daughter wakes up or cries we have to put him aside and go to her. Also, she sleeps in the room with us and we have to lock the cat out due to noise and safety. Luckily, in our case, the pet loves the baby so much and the baby loves the pet so much that their relationship makes up for any lack he might feel from my husband and I.

Papillion, that is the overgrown grey beast’s name, is an indoor cat because that is, in our opinion, the best way to take care of him. Yesterday some workers came to our home when we were not there and he got out. I came home in the afternoon and felt that something was not right. I was in a frenzy looking under furniture with a flashlight, hoping that he was hiding. It was not long before I was texting my husband at work, asking him what to do, because the cat was gone.

I could not go out and look for him or hang up signs, like I longed to do, because my daughter was napping. So I sat and I just had to trust his cat instincts. I dreaded the thought of our indoor cat getting into the street and possibly getting hurt but there was nothing I could do. It was so painful, but I am a parent and that is what I had to do.

When my daughter woke we went out together to look for Papillion, calling his name and hiking the grounds we live on. She was very upset. We couldn’t find him so we had lunch and went out, hoping that when we got back he would turn up for dinner.

There was no sign of the cat until 7:30 when we were both in the tub. I was combing out dreadlocks dripping with conditioner when I heard a cry that I knew was his. I went to the front door naked and wet and peered out but there was no cat. Got back in the tub, heard the cry, and checked the front and back doors, no cat. Got back in the tub and heard the cry again and grabbed a towel and threw open the bedroom window, all the while talking to my daughter in the other room, because as long as I could hear her talking I knew she was ok.

There, on the roof of the laundry room about ten feet cross from my window, was Papillion. We were eye to eye but I could not get him. He was too high up to jump down and too far away to jump across. I knew where he was but I could not do anything. He was crying. The cat had no idea how to back track to however he got up there, all he knew was that I was close but we could not get to each other. None of my friends or neighbors was home. I had already called everyone I could think of but had no luck. I had to stay with my daughter. I had to finish her hair and get her to bed and be home with her.

Hours later my husband came back from a long commute and the first day on a new job. He went out looking but had no luck. When he got back, I went back out with a flashlight, it was 11pm.

Here is where the miracle starts: A neighbor saw me and asked if I wanted him to come with me. He is practically a stranger but he offered to help me and I said yes, please. Then I asked if I could look out his window because his place faced the area I had last seen my cat. I shone the flashlight out his window and in the distance I saw two yellow eyes. The cat was in a no mans land, in a tangle of rocks and plants and debris on a piece of property that was gated off with barbed wire and seemed to belong to no one.

My neighbor Stephen suggested we go on the laundry room roof with some food and try to lure the cat over. He found a ladder and helped me climb up on the structure that may not have been made to hold my weight, then he joined me. There was a chasm at least 15 feet deep filled with branches and brush between me and the cat, with no way to get to him even though he was only 10 feet from where I stood. The cat just sat there and wouldn’t come. I was not sure if he was injured or just scared.

After a while of no luck, Stephen suggested I go onto the property on the other side of the brambly no mans land where the cat sat. I was emotional and exhausted and he was the voice of practical enough reason guiding me each step. He kept the flashlight on the cat while I went tromping through someone else’s darkened property calling out “Hi neighbor", so as not to startle anyone or get myself in trouble. No one answered so I continued to open gates and wonder on back behind a stranger’s home. As I entered the last gate I came eye to eye with a large unfamiliar dog. “Hi Neighbor” I called in a spontaneous attempt to act natural, fearless, and I stepped past the strange animal, who miraculously just looked at me.

I pulled a small child proof gate closed behind me and the dog and went up on their deck where I climbed up on a chair to hoist myself to a ledge a few feet below another ledge with barbed wire. My cat was a few feet behind the wire.

There, with my bowl of lump crabmeat extended towards the creature, I started to ask my beautiful cat to please come home. I told him that I missed him and that we needed him to come back. After ten minutes of talking and me blowing on the crab so that he would get a whiff of it, he finally came timidly to the bowl and I inched the bowl back closer and closer to me. Finally, the cat was just above my head as I carefully pulled the barbed wire over his body and made sure it was not tangled on his tail and I lifted him down towards me, putting the bowl of crabmeat into my parka pocket in case of an emergency.

Stephen was still shining the flashlight on us and calling out progress to my husband, who was upstairs in our home with our daughter. I told Stephen that I was afraid to go past that dog again with the cat and he offered to come help so I waited I bit, but then I got the courage to creep over the childproof gate and down the stairs form the deck, quietly watching for the dog. I could see the gate that I needed to get past only 15 feet away. No dog in sight, I made a run for it, heart pounding, and I didn’t breathe until that door was successfully closed behind me. Victory on that last hurdle never tasted so sweet.

I thanked Stephen for all that he had done for me. My arms ached from tension and yoga and I could barely carry that heavy animal back around all the properties, through the street and up to my home, but I did and we are all safe and sound.