Sunday, April 29, 2018

Holy Moly May is here...

Some days the rain doesn't come.
I want it to. Badly.

Some days my heart feels broken, even though I know it should be whole.
Bittersweet, to me.

Some days I have one drink and I think to myself,
There are people who walk around this fuzzy all the time.

Some days I think I know who I am.
Then I surprise myself, YET again.

Some days I long for a different feel to my life.
Then I remember all I have to be happy, and thankful for.

Some days I apologize too much for anything, and everything.
Oh wait, that's every day.

Some days I question my motives and my whole approach to relationships.
I never know how I'll answer.

Some days I doubt my sincerity, and then I remember what I'm all about.
Honesty with a dash of tact, even if it hurts.

Some days I feel as though I could do backflips down every long hallway I encounter.
That's how my happy comes out sometimes.

Some days I frantically write my thoughts down, because I don't want to lose them.
Then I forget where I placed my notebook, and I have to start again.

Some days, I feel elated and know that soon I'll be on the other side and ascending into sadness, just for a moment-- the price we pay for love, is often grief.
Take today, for example.

Thursday, March 15, 2018

This Weather We're Havin', Eh?

Petrichor: The smell of the earth after it rains.

Cool, fresh, earthy night air caresses my body and the resulting gust leaves goosebumps.

The clouds dance across the moon in waves, as though an ocean of grey and silver gleams and churns above me.

The rain is cold, clean, and sharp; soft and firm, all at the same time.

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I remember being seven or eight...

The night of the first snow, had to be just after October. Possibly, it was exactly a week from Halloween, on my birthday.  We'd been watching "Flower Drum Song," and it began to fall.

The framed glass doors leading out to the back porch glistened and glowed with silent, fluffy flakes.

I remember wearing only an over-sized t-shirt and having my mom slip her deliciously puffy and soft black coat around me; it was knee length on her, but I swam in its slippery, silky embrace.

Stepping out from the dark shadows of our house, I took a deep breath, crossing from glossy hardwood onto grey cedar. The wood of our back deck was densely smooth, but rough around the edges.

 Oklahoma weather had stained it with sun, rain and thunderstorms.

 I looked directly up into the pitch black night sky.

I couldn't see stars, but the flakes were coming fast and straight at my face as I kept it tilted all the way back.

I began to spin.

Arms out!

We still had the purple and green porch-lights up, and the effect on the falling snow was one of dizzyingly blending pastel colors.

Music was playing in my head. "Love Look Away," -- an amazing piece from the aforesaid Rogers and Hammerstein musical we'd been watching.

My feet were cold, but it didn't matter. Snowflakes melted on my cheeks, and I remember feeling transported with the smell of the the brisk air, and the gentle flurries around me.

The warmth of my body in the coat was in such contrast to my exposed skin.  I remember my heartbeat thudding as the orchestra played in my head, while I was mesmerized; staring up into infinity.

 I kept spinning with my head back, under the fast, falling snow.

I kept dancing to the music, with my heart keeping time until I thought I might fall over from the sheer joy of being alive in that moment.

I am sometimes homesick for that feeling...



Monday, February 26, 2018

Too Much

Is there such a thing as too much?

Too many mistakes.
Too many people.
Too many calories.
Too many cars.
Too many times.
Too much force.
Too terrible to think about.

What about too little?

Too few friends.
Too few opportunities.
Too few dollars.
Too few volunteers.
Too little empathy.
Too little to understand.
Too little trust.

Having just enough:

In the middle is perfection...
Or is it mediocrity?
Just enough means life at its best, but what if you miss the mark?
How do you know you've reached the pinnacle of the successful stratagem?
What does the mean, mean?
Is it possible to balance the see-saw indefinitely?
Or will you be stuck motionless at the "just right," place...

Too much, too little and too late:

Life goes up and down.
There is no perfect center, except the center of your being, the space inside your soul.
Back and forth and good and bad, want and need and all one has... everything.
Everything moves in cycles, and if you stay stuck in the middle, you die.
Time won't stand still.
Living means movement, which means flux.
Even the breath in your lungs expands and contracts; perfection isn't met.

Or found.
Or kept.
Or traded.

The stillness of motion is in the moment itself.

Keep moving, keep fighting, keep testing the rise and fall.








Tuesday, February 20, 2018

Forgive Yourself and DO IT NOW.

Don't hold a grudge like a weapon, especially against your own self's past transgressions.
Do take the time to remember the good things, and not everything the critics dismember.

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Sometimes the old stuff resurfaces in the most unpleasant ways.
Things you think you've processed, that you feel finished with, once again arise.
There is nothing wrong with acknowledging the asshole in the room, and then sending them on their way.

It's never too late to start something you always wanted to try, or do, or experience, and it's also never too late to pick back up, that which you laid down years ago.
You don't have to remain trapped in what you thought was yourself; growth and change are going to happen, whether you like it or not.

-------------------------

Breathe in and out.
Take a look around.
Can you see me now?
I'm the lost and found.

Touch my skin, it's soft.
Hold my heart aloft.
Lead me to the trough.
Drink the drink I brought.

In each soul there lives;
Dark and light to give.
Only when, what-if?
Stop and see the trip.

You can make your way.
You can seize the day.
Mix the paint, it's gray.
You don't have to stay.

Every word has strength.
Take its breadth and length.
Notice what you think.
If your blood were ink?

Happenstance is clear.
Hindsight, fondly dear.
Your love brought you here.
Don't lose, fight the fear.

As the river flows,
Ask the wind, she blows.
Only "heaven," knows.
Time's out, nothing owes.




Thursday, February 8, 2018

"If I'm late, it's because I'm dead," - Entrapment

Don't Worry Mom, It's NOT a LIMERICK:

My parents are wonderful humans.
The each have their quirks and their peeves.
My dad must be three hours early.
My mom gets there after he leaves.

My dad rises early each morning.
My mom prefers sleeping in more.
My dad will be dressed, and ready to go.
He'll wait a long time by the door.

When I was a small little kiddo,
My Daddy was always on time.
My mom hesitates, people always wait,
She's got her own pace and timeline.

The stares and the looks made me shudder.
If mom was the one driving me.
Be it practice or school, or a trip to the pool,
I would walk in ashamed, late you see.

As soon as I got my own license.
I got a job working with horses.
We bought a used car, named it Willie,
Then early I was for my courses.

My mom simply cannot do "early."
Our friends have all learned to adjust.
If my family's invited to something,
Then "Warren Time-Change", is a must.

This means that a party at 1:00,
Will be stated to start at 12:30,
Dad and I will show up before set-up is done,
My mom might be on time, she'll look pretty.


Note: I love my parents dearly, but I did feel ashamed being late to things -- it was very embarrassing for me growing up, and once I got my own car, I was only late if my alarm didn't go off, and usually not even then, because I tend to wake up early. I'm not three hours early, like my Dad, but I'm not 20 minutes late either (Momma). My preference is about 10 to 15 minutes early. ;-) The Sweet Spot. If I arrive exactly on time for something, then I feel late.






Wednesday, February 7, 2018

Once Upon A Time:

Fairytales are more than scary.
Sometimes I think they're based on truth.
Right now I feel like I'm stuck in a novel co-written by Stephen King and Margaret Atwood...

Once Upon A Time is the start for secrets and lies, and fascinating truths that certain readers despise.

Once Upon A Time, women were taught they needed rescuing; that speaking your mind was an offense punishable by death.

Once Upon A Time I was confident and felt that I had nothing to lose, because if they don't like my work, there's always another audition, and eventually, even if they don't like me, they'll get so tired of seeing me return with a smile, that they'll take a risk and give me a job.

Once Upon A Time I lost that confidence somewhere between sophomore and junior year at University, when I found out the guy I was head over heels for was cheating on me, and my heart broke for the second time in my life and I forgot how to believe in myself.

Once Upon A Time I walked around like a zombie and didn't believe the compliments, only the mistakes and naysayers and I was too skinny, and too lost to perform with confidence.

Once Upon A Time, my college voice teacher, an amazing woman named Adrienne, convinced me to sing opera and said,
       "Wait a minute, do you think you don't have a voice? YOU HAVE A VOICE," She saved my life and reminded me of what I'd forgotten; that deep down, I LOVE singing, dancing and acting and that I have a voice worth listening to.

Once Upon A Time, I walked the line between self-doubt and the desire to prove myself to others, and the stubborn streak of 'why the hell do I care so much about their opinion if I love doing it, I won't stop,' and I STILL moved out of state and 'took a break,' even though half my heart didn't want to --- had to give love a chance.

Once Upon A Time, I went to an audition for "Kiss Me Kate," in Denver, and they were surprised that  I could sing well without a microphone taped to my face, and they called me back, but I had to decline because I couldn't swing attending classes all day, rehearsals all evening and then studying for anatomy finals and getting no sleep to perform well at anything.

Once Upon A Time, I took up Ballet class again at Lemon Spongecake dance company and was loving it, until I mentioned it to a friend, who showed up unexpectedly to what had been my solo sanctuary. I dropped my mason jar of water at the studio entrance, and was so mortified and ashamed, that I never went back.

Once Upon A Time, I graduated from massage school, and got my heart broken again, and then met my partner and got married, and had two kids, and am now getting back to singing more than Disney around the house, and preparing myself to audition and act and dance again with the same 'nothing to lose,' attitude that made me so successful before.

Once Upon A Time I found out I'm an INFJ and that it's actually weird that I remember details about people and places so clearly, even if I haven't seen them in years, and that NOT EVERYONE re-plays their worst days from their life so far on repeat in their head at night. Like when I was late to dance class by 3 minutes because my alarm didn't go off, and my professor made me sit next to her for the entire class time, while I balled my obedient eyes out watching famous dancer 'Jack' teach Fosse (one of my all time favorite choreographers). When he asked me to dance, she said "SIT THERE," and he kept encouraging me and I wanted to join him more than anything in the world.  Like Obedient Ella from the book "Ella Enchanted," I couldn't disobey my professor. Were I to get up and join, would very likely  mean she'd probably fail me, or throw me out.  After all, I was being made an example of and it all felt the same way it did when I was in First Grade and tortured by my teacher for being "willfully insolent," instead of the fact that my not understanding her was a developmental thing, that most teachers acknowledge. As for the college professor, I still sometimes wonder why she was so wary of me --- I just wasn't good enough, I guess. I HATED being late before that incident and I still hate being late. Maybe next entry, I'll write about why being late feels traumatizing for me, in and of itself.


Once Upon A Time, I am STILL working on forgiving my past self, and letting things go, and letting it be "okay," that I am not perfect, and never will be. I am who I am, and that's a soul working to do my best and be my best, which means never ending and continuous improvement.

I HOPE someday I'll be able to say,
       "Once Upon A Time, I healed my old wounds and accepted that I am good enough and planning to get better. I profoundly love and accept myself."

I am lucky. I know love and joy and have support in my life. Even though I have a dark side, and sometimes I get lost in it; most of the time I thoroughly enjoy my cheerful disposition. I still live every day with humor, the most that I can.

Please remember to listen to people. For children especially, it is vital that they are heard-- they may not understand why they feel things so deeply, or why life can hurt so much, but if they know they're safe and loved, then they can access their resilience and continue to sink their roots deeply into the sacred earth, and stretch their green youth exuberance for growth to the sky!

Just... please, no matter who you are, please don't give up on yourself. If you find that you're thinking crappy, negative thoughts, and you cannot remember your self-worth or that you truly CAN do anything you set your mind to, find a friend who will take the time to REMIND you of that FACT.

As I used to say, (and still do) every single time I leave the theatre space (from age 11 through forever),

       "I LOVE YOU ALL!"



Tuesday, February 6, 2018

Some nights...

My feet sink into the lush, vibrantly deep green grass. It feels silky soft, smooth and cool to my skin; just slightly long enough to be considered overgrown, and my feet leave gentle imprints where my weight has bent the blades.

Don't forget to count the trees: 1, 2, 3...

 The mist has risen again tonight; gradient fog, clinging to the tall rows of trees I walk between-- swirling around my limbs as I step lightly down the center of the cedar grove.

4, 5, 6...

Glancing up, I see the moon. Big, beaming and shadowy as wispy clouds float across it's glowing face, almost pulsing in the night sky.

7, 8, 9...

He is ahead of me.

10, 11, 12...

He dances in the hollow, between the night and the dawn, balanced on the edges of things.

13.

The cedar trees tower over me on either side. I feel as though I am part walking, part swimming through a misty sea -- I can begin to see the outline of a person, standing ahead of me.

Taking a deep breath, I rise up on the balls of my feet, my toes bending at a 90 degree angle in demi-pointe, my arms raising up as I close my eyes and tilt my head back, with my eyes closed. A smile plays about my lips as I hold in sous-sous, sending energy out my fingertips, and down my feet into the earth.

He breaks into a loping run towards me. My breath catches because I can hear his feet thudding the earth, feel him propelling himself rapidly toward me.  Air rushing past his strong body, I'm imagining his heart pounding slowly and steadily behind his ribs, but I keep my eyes closed.

Strong, warm hands grip my waist, then slide to my ribcage, as he gently lifts me into the air.

We dance.

Our muscles work hard, but these lifts, turns, balances... this partnering, feels effortless.  He smells like clean sweat, cedar, vanilla bark, and rain on flagstone.

Hours pass. Then, our pas de deux finishes.

He rests his hands delicately on either side of my face, his thumbs feather-lightly stroking my eyelids.

       "Please open your eyes." It is a polite request, not a voiced order, so I do. His voice is rich and medium toned.

      "I've never seen you before now. You're.... different than what I pictured in my head," I half whisper, nodding self-consciously.

His eyes are golden pools of bourbon with flecks of mica, and they seem look through my outer surface, deeply into the center of my being. His gaze is gently probing, curious. His skin is the deepest, blackest coffee bean. The curves of his face are graceful and strong, like his dancing, and he looks.... familiar.

"I know you. How?" He smiles, and puts a finger to his lips, as if to say, 'no more questions...' Glancing down at my feet, I feel the heat rising in my cheeks. Suddenly he's sunk to a crouch and is tracing the outline of my skin colour changes with his fingertips. It's a very light touch along those borders across the tops of my bare feet, and I shiver.

       "You are different. I like that. I like that you're not hiding your skin. I hope you're embracing this.... Vitiligo. This change."

       "I've had it since I was little -- honestly, I feel as though it should bother me, but it doesn't. It's just... how I look."

       "Amazing, and... symmetrical."

       "I suppose. Eventually, my whole body will be white as a ghost."

       "Does that upset you?"

       "Not really... I feel cool.... like a leopard who can change its spots. It doesn't change my heritage or who I am, it's just... part of how I look. Universal vitiligo, I mean. It doesn't change who my parents are, or my culture. I'll miss how my darkest freckles look against my walnut coloured skin, but I was born with strawberry blonde hair anyway. I'm used to looking unique."

       "I do find the patterns of it, the contrast between light and dark exotically fascinating."

       "Thank you."
     
       "How did you come to be here? Who sent your invitation."

       "I thought you... ?"

       "No. I am the partner. I lead the dance, someone else sends the second. How were you invited?"

       "I found a note under my pillow. There have been three. Three notes to come here. Instructions to keep my eyes closed once I pass the 13th cedar tree... to dance blindly until beckoned to see."

       "Ah. Curly handwriting? Sepia toned ink? Parchment fashioned from the bark of a Birch tree?"
     
       "Yes."

       "Interesting."

       "So, you know who sent me the invitations?" He paused, as if unwilling or uncertain that answering my question would be the right thing to say.

       "Mmmm. Why did you accept?"

       "I miss pas de deux. I miss... being part of a company."

       "I'd like to hear more about that experience and the feelings associated with it. Now, however, we must part ways."

       "Now that I've seen you -- I know it was you the other two times, the other two dances. I'd recognize you with my eyes closed, even though now I know what you look like."

       "Appearances can be deceiving, but bodies -- movements, following and leading, heartbeats and quality of touch -- those never lie."

       "Is there a way for me to write to you? To contact you?"

       "You'll receive a different sort of invitation. You must go now."

       "Good bye then."

       "Good evening." He did a triple fouetté then took a knee and placed my hand on his heart for a moment. Then, he was gone, running back up the line and disappearing into the mist.

I turned on my heel, unsure of my feelings. Strange though my dreams may be, I'd never have previously believed that I could accept an invitation into someone else's, or an in-between place, or wherever we were.

 Closing my eyes, I began to walk backward the way I came -- counting my breaths to 13, until the swirling fog began to rise up my body -- colder and colder. I felt myself floating away again, falling backwards, and when I opened my eyes again, I was safely under my old, worn cotton comforter. Staring up at the old stick-on-glow-in-the-dark stars I had put up on my bedroom ceiling on my 11th birthday, I sighed.

Tomorrow I'll finish unpacking. I'll move into the master bedroom. 

Saying goodbye to my parents had been heart-breaking and the most difficult thing I'd ever done, but I couldn't keep pretending that I was all right. Sleeping in my childhood bedroom, waiting, as if they were  going to come home any minute.

I'm 23 years old. I can do this. The funeral was 3 months ago. It's over. That was the hardest part, right? I can make this house less empty if I finish unpacking and sorting. Mom would want me to 'get on with it,' as she'd say. 

Glancing at the clock; 1:11 A.M.

I grabbed Pride and Prejudice, from my nightstand -- Jane Austen would help me sleep. Help me forget that I was alone in my deceased parents' house, and engaging in strangely lucid dream fantasies.

Maybe I've been elaborately hallucinating.

No, if I was crazy, then how come I'd saved the all too materially real notes -- stuck them into the pocket of my day-planner to remind myself that I had something to look forward to.  For now, sleep. Sleep would get me to the new day tomorrow-- or the rest of today, rather.

I'll start with the stars. It's time for them to come down, and fresh paint to go up. 'Nothing less expensive works to transform a room than a gallon of paint,' Mom always said. 

Yes. Tomorrow, the stars come down. 

The heavens fall. 
The earth moves.
The sun rises.

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