Saturday, July 31, 2010

A Casual Affair

Ahhh...the block party.

The anniversary of neighborly relations.  No, I live in the gray house on the corner.  I'm married to that guy over there.  Did you know she was pregnant?  How many kids do they have?  Who the heck are those people?

That annual get together showcasing the potluck parade of pasta salad.  Oooo!  Who made this one?  Can I get your recipe for that one?  Is this a Weight Watchers recipe?  What the hell is that black stuff in hers?

The once yearly opportunity to interact with the wildlife other people's children.  Sure, I'll cut your hot dog for you.  No, I don't know where your daddy went.  I think you should go tell your mommy you peed in your pants.  We don't hit our friends, please.  

If you don't participate one of these quintessential American celebrations...

If your life has up until now been bereft of this classic suburban bash...

Well need to move.  Because your neighborhood sucks.  The block party is a blast!

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Take the Breath

...continued from here because I had more to say.  Oh, there are so many becauses with this one.  Because intentional restraint takes power.  And mindfulness.  And focus.  And doing.  And doing without.  Holding my breath for awhile.  Because I can.  Going without one thing so I can have another.  Power.  Choice.

We do hold our breath sometimes.  We do dip just below the surface for a time and go without the things we need, because by doing that we gain something.  We can be enveloped by that water that lets us fly as long as we know at some point we're going to have to come up for air.  Because that same liquid that supports our unburdened flight, can also become too much.  If we stay too long it can swallow us up just as easily as it lets us fly.  You can take steps to stay beneath the surface, to go without air.  You can learn to live differently.  But even the fish needs air.  If you're going to live, you need air.  You need the things you need.  To be yourself.  And having him here is a big part of being me.

So now he's back, the one I needed, and I'm not holding my breath any longer.  But I'm not breathing easy yet.  No, not yet. Because when you do break the surface, and take the breath you've been dying for, it's not just a breath.  It's a gasp.  Deep.  Frantic maybe.  A bit of taking in as much as you possibly can because you've gone without.  And that can be both good and bad.  It takes some time for my breathing to return to normal when I've gone without air for so long.  I was doing just fine here without him, as unnatural as that was, just fine.  Restricting my movements, less of everything, just so I could make my breath last.  And now my gasping to have my needed one back is a new struggle.  I need him to do all those things I wasn't doing while I survived.  And do them quickly.  Now!  Please.  Faster.  More.  Now that I have my breath back there's no limit to what needs to be done.  Right?  Wrong.  It takes some time for the breathing to return to normal.  Just give it time.  Catch your breath.  Breathe easy because pretty soon you're going to do it again.
"You can hold your breath,
but you cannot pretend you don't breathe."

Monday, July 19, 2010

First Tomato

The big sister reached into the jungle of tomatoes, planted too close together by the mother who doesn't really know what she's doing...Hey! It's my first garden, and jostled it so gently that it dropped, red and ready into her little palm. 

The Middle Bit stripped off her wet bathing suit and came streaking across the yard to receive the sun warmed treasure.

It only happens once a season.  Once.  So you have to be ready for it...she was.  You have to treasure it...she did.

The first tomato.

Sunday, July 18, 2010

Just Under the Surface

"You can hold your breath, 
but you cannot pretend you don't breathe."

Even as he speeds back to me I can feel myself clawing towards the surface.  Mouth gaping in a silent scream.  Chest burning, ready to explode with my need for air.  The harder I push the father away it seems.  He's been gone for weeks now...the Father, my partner, my Love, my air... and I've been holding my breath.  Blah, blah, blah...I can function without him here, yes.  But it's not natural.  You can hold your breath.  I can hold my breath.  It is my choice.  My ability.  Yes. 

I'm better at it than I used to be.  That's how it is with learning to hold your breath.  The more you practice, the better you get at it.  The longer you can go without air.  So yes.  I can go longer these days.  I'm better at it.  But it keeps getting harder too.

Because now it's not just me.  It's me and three little girls.  And the part time job.  And the house guests.  And the old black dog.  And the new puppy...what was I thinking?  Oh that's right, I wasn't thinking...thinking is a non-essential function when you're just trying to make your breath last longer.  I've learned that if I stop doing all sorts of cooking, and reading, and shopping, and blogging... while I hold my breath, I can go longer before I start clawing towards the surface.

So that's where I've been.  Here, yes.  But here holding my breath.  Hold.  Hold.  Hold.  

To be