Posts Tagged ‘leaping’

… and write the words that center my soul.

I must have walked a million miles, barefoot on eggshells all around.

Hoping I will soon take flight

and build my wings while falling slowly down.

Hoping I will float across these eggshells all around,

still, it never makes sense.

All the thoughts and words and feelings and pain and hurt and anger and longing and love and fear and comfort…

… and write the words that center my soul.

Give me peace from all these thoughts, all the mis-directions of my dreams, all the words that surfaced out-of-order.

I never wanted to be a lesson you had to learn.

I never wanted to be the reality of hate.

I never wanted to…

I must have walked a million miles, barefoot on eggshells all around.

… and write the words that center my soul.

To turn it all around,

to make the ending seem not so out of reach.

… and write the words that center my soul.

I must have walked a million miles, barefoot on eggshells all around,

these cuts so small you can barely see.

But me… I feel them.

Each one, I know what look put it there,

Each one, I know what word carved the scar deep into my skin,

Each one, I know what thought made me wish I could fly instead of walk,

across the jagged edge of the frail eggshells.

… and write the words that center my soul.

Sitting here, searching for them,

prying open my mind.

… and write the words that center my soul,

and hope they drown out the deafening sound of these cracking eggshells that surround —

all around.

I must have walked a million miles, barefoot on eggshells all around,

just to find my own words,

just to hear my own voice,

just to soar above the breaking of the eggshells…

I must have walked a million miles, barefoot on eggshells all around,

to get to where I am now,

to see the place I want to be,

to know it’s not so out of reach.

… and write the words that center my soul.




I am thrilled to be part of a wonderful community of poets over at the Promising Poets’ Poetry Cafe and even more thrilled to be awarded this Perfect Poet Award. Please head over there and check out all the wonderful writers — you’ll thank me.

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I guess it comes as no surprise to some and a big surprise to others that in a few days, I will be officially single…again, after nearly eighteen years of marriage. I’ve made a point to tell only a few people, those that I have a bond with or those I have felt comfortable sharing such intimate news — the words are sometimes difficult to form. They sometimes don’t want to leave my lips. They sometimes get stuck in my throat. Not because I’m unsure of this particular path down which my journey through life is leading me — I came to grips with this a while ago, but more because of the way it is perceived by others.

My best friend had been separated from her husband and on the verge of divorce for months before she told me of their marital problems. She was embarrassed to admit that “she failed”. That’s what divorce is in our society, a failure. So when my turn came around to disclose information to her  — I was less than forthcoming as well. I held off on some important details until after our initial exchange on the subject…I sent her a text message that said, “I’m getting divorced and need to talk to my best friend”. She called within minutes and we talked of marriage and divorce and friends and life — and there were no questions I didn’t want to answer and there were no judgements I didn’t need to hear.

I don’t view my divorce as a failure or as a mistake or as a mid-life crisis or as an act against God (more on that later) — it is a choice to continue, to grow, to leap. I think some things in life come to us without offering a choice — they just are. Those are the things that really shape us by forcing us to make decisions about ourselves — we can’t really decide to change certain things, but we can decide to change ourselves. Somethings aren’t always about changing — somethings are meant to stay the same and we are meant to change… to avoid, to circumvent, to move past.

I don’t necessarily think the things or the people that we encounter in our lives are wrong in their steadfastness — we each are responsible for our own outcome. They simply choose to remain stuck and we choose to move forward. Sometimes we move forward in huge bounds and sometimes… sometimes much more frequently, we move forward by living daily in the small victories. Small victories that have meaning to us… and that’s the way it should be.

I think, for me, I’ve been stuck in the “big picture” and not realizing that the small daily victories have been leading me on and comforting me. Small daily victories like seeing a familiar face or hearing a comforting voice or reading carefully chosen words or writing… sometimes, just sometimes, the small victories add up and make the huge leaps seem much easier to navigate. Life isn’t always about the “big picture” or the enormous leaps. I’m beginning to take the small victories and embrace them, I’m beginning to take the small victories and cherish them — I’m beginning to notice the small victories. Small victories, the greatest wish of all.

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I’ve been thinking a lot lately about sinking and swimming and leaping and moving on and standing still and … well, you get the point. And reading this post, by the magnificent Judy Clement Wall, made me (as usual) think about events in life that we all face to some extent. We are all bound together in this life by love and loss and death and belonging. It’s what we do at the denouement that separates us, really. I like to think that I’m leaping and moving and continuing, but sometimes I wonder. I wonder if using the words… writing them or speaking them or thinking them is all I’ve been doing.

Sinking can be scary. When you quit struggling or quit attempting or just quit… that’s it, you sink. And you can’t breathe and you can’t move and you can’t hear or feel or think. And then, there in the sinking, you find a moment’s peace — when you can’t hear or feel or think and you take a deep cleansing breath. And your lungs suddenly expand with the want of more and you softly float back up and peek out from under the wreckage. And in that moment, the sinking becomes pure ecstasy. And you wonder why you were afraid to sink at all.

Swimming can be scary. You realize you’re going under and you jump in to avoid it — to avoid the crash. And you can see the distant shore of a friend or a loved one and you hope you have the strength to make it there… to make it to them. And it hurts to breathe because you’re struggling so hard and you become tired and you become scared at reaching them at all because what if they don’t realize how far you just swam. But then a hand reaches out and you feel the warmth of the connection and your pulse intensifies and you breathe deep and cover the remaining distance like you were made for this… like it was easy all along. And you wonder why you were afraid to swim at all.

Sink or swim.

I choose neither. I choose both. There is balance in both. There is connection in both. There can be vital life affirming outcomes reached… as long as you don’t remain steadfast in the sinking or hell-bent on the swimming. As long as you realize when you’ve reached that point, the point when it’s time to move again, the point when it’s time to stand still, the point when it’s time to shift, the point when it’s time to breathe.

Sink or Swim.

You don’t need a third option — the best two options are there for you… waiting for you to take a chance, waiting for you to decide… waiting for you to sink or swim or both. We pass through this life and we find the others that were made for us… the ones we were supposed to find — the ones that bring us the missing pieces to the puzzle. And when we find them, we realize why we took another breath when we thought our lungs were done. We realize why we kept swimming when we thought our hearts could beat no more. We realize we’re here… connected by the need to rise up from under the wreckage and swim for the shore.

Picture from Kind Over Matter

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I was thinking recently about fragility in health, in love, in friendship, in human connections… in life. My son and daughter went to play laser tag downtown a few nights ago with friends. I began to worry around 9 o’clock when I should have gotten a call to pick them up at the meeting point. I called my daughter and she was upset, one of her friends had collapsed during the game and was being taken away by ambulance. It was scary for my daughter and my son to see their friend lying there, incoherent, partially paralyzed — they felt helpless and fragile. It made me think of my youngest daughter and how fragile her health can be at times.

She has a severe allergy to nuts. I carry an epipen everywhere — just in case. She has a special seat at school that is kept free of nuts and the dreaded peanut butter. Yet one day her fragility made itself known. She had gotten just the slightest sprinkling of peanut butter on her finger and subsequently on her lip — a smidgen… less than a taste. Her lip swelled immediately and her eyes closed — time and a bath made her better. Sometimes simple things can cause the frailness that is in us to leave — if only momentarily.

I was 38 years old when I hugged my best friend for the first time. We have been best friends since we were 5 — we both escaped our childhoods being non-emotional, non-feeling, non-hugging friends. Yet, we love one another. Sometimes I confuse even myself. Our first hug was awkward and laughable — we both said, “we can do this”, to each other as we went in for the hug… we laughed. And in that hug, in our awkward huggable moment, we connected even more with each other — we erased some fragility.

Fragility in life is everywhere. In the people we love and in those we barely know. I know what is means to be fragile… to be in need of a hand to hold and a friend to talk to. I know what it means to help someone I love when they are fragile. Fragile doesn’t last. It can be fixed — I like to fix things when they’re broken.

I think we all have fragility in us, sometimes… unfortunately, sometimes. But still even though by nature we are fragile, by nature we break, we still carry on. We still move through life with a semblance of carefree bliss and a need to leap… again. We love and laugh and care and we express ourselves through words that can often leave us open and vulnerable and… broken. Because we’re fragile. We hope that we connect with people who recognize our strengths and our frailties, we hope they accept our imperfections and that they continue to love us and care about us in our often fragile and sometimes broken states. We hope they add to the army that builds us back… that makes us whole again. If those people exist… if by chance we are fortunate to find them and keep them close to our hearts and our souls — then maybe, we won’t continue to break. Maybe, we aren’t too fragile.

Picture from Kind Over Matter

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As you may know, I’ve been participating in the 21.5.800 community adventure. The writing portion of the adventure has taken me to different places so far, some places I liked and some places I don’t want to visit again. The yoga is always a welcomed relief and a great way to focus and breathe and think quietly about the day ahead (I mentioned I have three kids, right?) This is where it took me today:

I was recently sent this text message — “What happened to you?”

I had no response. It wasn’t really an inquiry, more like an inquisition and the inferred remaining words were probably something like this, “… because you are doing things for yourself and taking time for yourself and not waiting around like always and…” well, you get the idea.

To steal some fundamental words from Zebra Sounds, I’ve been leaping and thinking and breathing and loving. I’ve also been writing — which has been scary for some people in my life, and I’ve been reading — again, some people find this scary, I’ve been exercising and getting healthy — scary to some, and I’ve been enjoying some alone time — this too, throws some people off.

I’ve been enjoying my kids and being the mom I always wanted to be — the one who isn’t perfect, the one who falls down sometimes, the one who gets up unassisted, the one who is messy… sometimes. A friend told me messy is good… it is.

I’ve been falling a little in love with some very small avatars. I’ve been laughing with some friends. I’ve been feeding my brain with some brilliant words by some brilliant writers. I’ve been leaping, some more, without a cape and the net keeps appearing. I’ve been trusting the people I’ve let into my life. I’ve been thinking about what I want to do next — and… I’ve been doing it.

So, what happened to me? I stopped pretending, I stopped walking through life in a fog, I stopped approaching everything like it was a business venture and started embracing the life I want, the friends I want… the things I want.

What happened to me is emergence. What happened to me is letting go of fear. What happened to me is embracing solitude. What happened to me is finding my own strength.

What happened to me? I’m leaping… some more.

Picture from Kind Over Matter

Now, it’s your turn. What’s happening with you? Seriously, I want to know.

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Today I took a huge leap in my life. One I’m not quite prepared to discuss here. But, a leap that leaves me scared and excited and scared and hopeful and scared and refreshed, oh and scared.

I think that’s the thing about leaping — it can be scary and new and messy… leaping can be messy. But, what I’m learning is that stagnant can be worse. I think, like many people, I’ve secured my feet in the concrete solidness of stagnant — avoiding anything out of the ordinary. I’ve been afraid of messy for a while. I was afraid that my messy was too much, too messy. But, then I heard a very good definition of messy — one that I thought really defined what I was trying to say but, as so often occurs with me, I couldn’t locate all the right words and get them in the right order. Here’s what I heard (from a very reliable source), messy is:

…the willingness to make mistakes, risk your heart, connect with new people, be an imperfect mom, be someone different and new.

I liked this — a lot. I’ve kept it, like so many other things I read that strike a chord with me.

I always thought being the “new kid” in school had loads of advantages. The thought of starting over, fresh, a clean slate — it’s very appealing. I, like everyone else who went “away” to college, was the new kid for a while. I had several friends who, when they went away to college, started using their middle names or a nickname. They became someone new and better and it seemed fun. I was given a nickname in college as well — Punky (it was an easy choice for my new friends given my last name of Brewster). I think, however, it had more to do with my personality than my convenient last name. Many of my college friends still call me Punky, I like that. I can remember being on second or third dates and the boy would have no idea what my real name was — no one knew…I was Punky to all and still am to some. Lots of my friends I have met recently call me “b”. I like that too. Renewal. Starting over. Refreshed.

I’m sure I’ll be dealing with some messes along the way. But, better that than stagnant. Better to move on and breathe deeply then to wade in the shallow end and never know what it’s like to fill your lungs with the deep breath of renewal. So today, renewal. Today, I breathe in and breathe out. Today, I begin…again.

I searched for a video or a poem or something about happiness that I thought would make you smile, I ended up with this video I posted on Facebook a couple of months ago — it makes me smile, it helps me breathe… enjoy.

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