Friday, May 31, 2013

the smasher

 One of Beach's favorite things to do is smash things.
After she hit me with a shard of glass while smashing marbles I set her up with a buffer in the form of a blue towel and some of the old geodes laying around the garden.

Not bad work.

Thursday, May 30, 2013

two roads divided

I will admit I already know this maybe one of those short stories which will get me in trouble.  Let’s just skip the lectures they obviously do no good.  And in fact I think that is the point of this: I clearly pick my roads.  Given the choice I always lean the same direction.  I deviate predictable.

Once upon a time I was going running even though I didn’t feel well.  It was well past noon and the list of foods eaten by me could all be written by using 4 letters (some more than once): C, O, F, & E.  

A block away from home as I began to truly run I noticed Little Dog had slipped out the fence and was running with me.  I returned her home and began again this time alone.

It went smoothly for a bit.  My feet felt sluggish and my back too tight, my shoulder feeling like a rubber band about to give way: details, scars, reminders of life. I was happy and the sun was trying.

Around the first dim corner where the river smell lingers and mixes with the odors of an old cow barn I saw a man walking oddly.  Meth walking.

From behind I could plainly see how big he was.  I thought of the dog I had turned back.  In the distance a single stern train whistle escaped the yard.  I had to make a decision: turn back myself or keep going.  In reality there was never a question.  I ran past him faster than I had been going and moved farther than I wanted to spilling out onto California Ave. spent from the sprint but still running.

I skipped the formality of the crosswalk and took my shot through a gap in the traffic to put more space between the meth walking man and myself.  I went on my way down river.

On the way back, this time facing him head on, the meth walking man was coming towards me and it was evident he was watching me intently.  I scanned the trail which at that point lead into either a long stretch behind tall fences and smothered in even taller trees, little more than a glorified alley, or alternatively a street lined with friendly houses.  The man watched me his eyes moving with mine as I scanned isolation alley and the street.

I picked the alley knowing if I needed to I could out running him and equally knowing how untrue that was.  I understood the whole weight of the chance I was taking and how badly I would regret it if something went wrong but I never doubted my decision to stay on course and run along the river. 

When I reached the corner and the isolation was spread less thin I turned to see if he had followed me but I covered too much ground to see where I had started from.  I will never know how close I was cutting it or if there was any real threat at all.  But I do know for my own sanity I have to be allowed to make my own decisions no matter how crazy the people around me feel about it.  This is more honest than I will have ever been and probably the most honest I will ever be again: in my head I am always in the middle of a war zone.  When you look at me across the room, minus some very rare exceptions, I am only half there.  In my mind I never left the world that haunts me.  And in my darkest moments I am afraid that might actually be true and all this is the illusion.

When you don't believe in anything it is hard to know things, hard to be sure.  You have to do a lot of testing.  A lot of looking back over your shoulder.  A lot of wondering which roads are right, and which roads you have left.

I live two lives and actually all thing considered I think I am doing a pretty good job at both.         

dirty laundry

I wanted to shut out the world today and write but the forces in my world were not going to be cooperative.  I asked for one thing- since he was planning on being home would he please see to the child this morning so I might not be the one seeing to her.  In hindsight, he never actually agreed...
The clear message of his intentions that he would not be the one seeing about things with her was delivered in the form of a man and child disagreeing over a bowl cereal.  She doesn't like to eat cold cereal and he obviously has forgotten that or doesn't care, sigh~
I abandoned writing for laundry.  He appeared perplex by my sudden forgetfulness about my intent to write.  He argued for the sake of looking cooperative. He might have possibly perhaps had been willing what? He wouldn't answer.  Then said something rushed about 'I can't watch her all day'.  She is nine, if one was to watch her all day that would be an incredible creepy thing to do.  But we do homeschool her and she does seem to be our child.  So, I made syrup and taught fractions.  Baked bread and oversaw heel PT.  I patiently pointed at words with the tip of an eraser and cooked a whole head of cauliflower for soup, he doesn't like to eat cauliflower and I obviously have forgotten that or I don't care...
I wrote a chore list.  She crossed off the words as I wandered the garden insight of more work, something that might take me away from everything else but I found nothing.
At the back fence I remembered I had wanted to wash my gym shoes but it was too late the laundry was all finished, neatly hanging on the clothes line waiting for the sun to come out from behind the fading rain clouds.  Then I saw what walking in the tall wet grass had done, it had washed all the dirt away.
 If you need me I will be out in the tall grass laundering my soul.  And tonight we will have fresh baked bread, a lush handpicked salad, and piping hot cauliflower revenge cheese soup.

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

in a napping place

 Beach quit napping before she turned 1.  I have tried over the years to get her to start back with no success.  Today napping was her idea. We lathered her heels in tiger balm and she did some stretching then under a goose down blanket we tried to sleep.
 But she couldn't stop squirming.  
I told her she was failing nap time.  
She lay quiet for a few minutes then asked, "What is my grade now?" 
When I answered "C-" she gasped in horror.
I told her to get an A one of us had to fall asleep.
 I'm pretty sure chronic pain isn't normal at nine.  Little zip lock bags of ice, tiger balm, napping brought on by pain, and a morning spent buying foods for ligament health isn't what I envisioned when I gave up a future in medicine to raise her.  But I am not the one sleeping.  This is her dream.  
 Beach on beam in high toe, ankles in neoprene.

It will be a shame to have to wake her for gym....

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

foot prints on the ceiling

You’re not asleep but you’re not awake either

It’s like falling through the cracks

You dream undreams
Aware and unaware of the world around you

I know she is in the room with me but it is as if she is walking on the ceiling.

a double edge

It starts with not being able to get warm.
Then vertigo steps in.
And tiredness takes over.
 The ph in my blood turns acidic.
It taxes my kidneys and overloads my liver.
It is like clockwork.  I could calculate miles run and fat burned and know by number when this will hit me.  Forecast it like weather.  I knew standing on the scale this morning.  I felt it in my reluctance to run cold. Not bothering to take me over slowly by 10 am my stomach began to roll and I was shivering uncontrollable.
This is part of the disease I have.  The delicate alliance I have with my pancreas and even more fragile relationship it has with the rest of body.
On the other side of this small festering storm is better health, a stronger leaner me, and some say so in what goes on.  Meanwhile I am here, again.  It is where all my hard work has taken me: to the edge.  The storm clouds are thick and they are creeping across the valley.

Now it is a waiting game.
Sit back and wait for the back edge of the storm to pass me by. 

meanwhile down the street

We had just finished dinner when our neighbor ran down to tell us that a game of Polish Horeshoes had broke out that their place.  Rules can be found at  but I will give you a short summary of the rules as I understood them.  Two people make a team.  To play you must be holding a drink. Object is to catch the Frisbee and not let your bottle perched on top of a pole get knocked over and when it is your turn to throw try to knock over the other teams bottle. (yeah, you should go read the rules yourself...)
 Other helpful hints: 
Don't play with a full beer
Throw from behind your pole or you give the other team a point.

Be willing to jump for it 
(Looks like I couldn't catch the Frisbee either!)
 If you look across the grass and see these two guys forget about protecting your bottle protect yourself!
 choose your teammates wisely
 And remember to always have fun
 because after all it is just a game...
 until the final rounds then it is a blood bath
 Perhaps the children should move
 The moment the bottle falls
 Thanks J & S for the new game and new friends.

Monday, May 27, 2013


When I turned forty I swore off the lounging about sun worship thing and for the most part I have been so good about wearing sunscreen and hats....
but there was this teeny-tiny bikini in my dresser that has no practical use, 
it seemed very lonely 
and I figured no one was around
 I can't be good all the time & I can't be right about everything 
but you can bet I will remember not to leave my camera lying around unattended when I'm up to no good!
I guess forty years just isn't enough time to grow-up in
 But I figured out a few things over my lifetime
At some point women have to realize their bodies are not the enemy
mine carried me 8 miles today 
one step at time 
one foot in front of the other
 miles as smooth & slick as falling rain 
 I do believe I have earned a little bit of worship