27 March 2010

Favorite Things

Since I have been really preoccupied lately, I haven't been writing much and what I have posted seemed (at least to one) "a bit morose".
In the spirit of spring, and to assuage any concerns about my state of mind, here is a list of things that make me really happy, particularly so in the last week:
*Note:  This is by no means a complete list, but rather a highlight of current goodies.

- Della Fattoria, aka the best bakery in the world, and all the folks associated with it.  I get to be next to Mr. Edmund, aka Poppa, one day of the week at a farmers market, and it is a true joy.

- Sitting by the fireplace long enough to feel the cold leave my perpetually chilly fingers, feet, and rear end.

- Bourbon.  Maker's Mark and I have been really tight lately, but my cousin Phil and adopted cousin Ritchie are going to introduce me to Bulleit next week.  (I think that was the one anyway.)

- The fact that I have a disproportionately smart and creative family (see above and below), and that we number so many that I keep being pleasantly surprised by "discovering" wonderful things they do.  This week?  Baby cousin Katy's visit to the farm, conspiring and shopping, watching her sew with Colleen, and talking about her blog.  (Baby girl's got chops, y'all.)

- Red Wine.  My uncle always tells the story when somebody asks "Red or White?" of Sophia Loren responding to that question by saying (with the delivery I imagine only Sophia Loren can do), "Darling... Wine Is Red." 

- My sister.  One day we'll live close enough to walk to the bar on the corner and get drunk on a Tuesday for no good reason. 

- I live in one of the best areas of the world for really good food.  Be it something straight from the market, or at one of the multitudes of amazing restaurants within a couple hours of me, I love to eat.  One of the worlds few pure pleasures.  Love it.

- Playing with puppies.  Our puppies, cousin puppies, or friend puppies; spending hours running around trails or after dinner rolling on the living room floor in a pile of puppy pulchritude; all of these are good for the soul.

- Being able to stop what I'm doing, turn my face up, and feel the warmth of the sun.

This week has reminded more than usual that it's not really the paths we take that matter as much as who accompanies us on the journey.  I sent some messages to people last weekend on the occasion of Brendan's birthday to tell them how much they mattered to me, and the responses I received were beautiful and touching and a little overwhelming.  What right have I to feel lonely with such incredible people in my life?
I am so grateful.

22 March 2010

Nothing Owed

"You are not accountable to me" he said with the familiar sweetness in his voice after he said it was good to hear you and I apologized for being less than available.
I never thought those words would ever make me feel less than comfortable and liberated, but from him it made me want to be accountable.

16 March 2010


I've been thinking a lot about what's next.

I am ready for a transition to something more, but what that will look like is still very fluid and fuzzy. 

The most difficult part of any change, for me, is the way it changes my relationships with people.  In the last couple months I have been savoring moments with people a little more deeply, and a little sadly.  Part of this is because I am not talking about what might come next with more than a very close handful - really, those that would be affected directly.  Intentionally not discussing a topic does not come naturally to me.  If something is there, on my mind or imminently present in some way, you can usually bet I'll have some words on it.

In the last week my demons of insecurity of loneliness have been especially pungent.  Ironically, because I have been really busy with work and socially and have been around people more than in the average week.  I think maybe that's the crux of it - the more I feel fulfilled and stimulated socially and emotionally, the more difficult it seems it will be to decide to leave.

I am taking a day off today and so far I've done exactly what I wanted to do, which was nothing.  I slept a long time, and am more or less still in bed into the afternoon.  Letting my mind wander as I search birdcage veils and watch Friday Night Lights on the internet is what I needed; rather than putting off thinking about hard things or making hard decisions, it's actually letting my mind relax into itself.  My mother has told me on several occasions that she knows when I'm making a big decision, or figuring out a problem, because I won't talk about it and I'll go more or less radio silent for a time, and when I do surface I'll have some answers.

I found a moment of acceptance in my bed meditation today.  Wherever I go, be it down the road or a continent away, I will still be with myself.  My insecurities, my demons that I've been dancing with as long as I can remember, are likely to stay with me.  So let those not guide my path.  Let these decisions be made based on what I know about me and my abilities rather than what I fear.  

11 March 2010

Old Friends Are Gold

"p.s. You can't do a V-day post without thinking of me because of youth and roses and snow and walks and Pulp Fiction and kisses in the rain and Madison and weddings and my family and decades of each other.  Pretty simple, really."

One of my best friends in the whole world also happened to love me when we were teenagers.  I loved him too.  Sometimes he seems to forget what a long and tricky path we took to get here so I have to remind him.   

08 March 2010


I've discovered last week on a particularly heavy day that I've got the secret antidote to depression, to that feeling like the world is weighing on you, that you are truly alone and breathtakingly lonely:
The first step is to pull up with the dogs romping around the driveway.  Because as you try to stop crying when you open the door, the puppy with have his nose in your lap wrestling to get in closer while the old dog is shoving in just to get a little pat.
Next you want to catch a sight of Uncle carrying chickens one by one from the alcove outside the chicken house to inside the coop, as they had accidentally gotten locked out during the day and had already hunkered down for the night.  The chickens are going to be pretty bent out of shape and clucky, and Uncle's going to need to be cooing to and chatting with them as he does this for the full effect.
While he's reorganizing the chickens you're going to run around the other side of the house to herd the ducks, who had planted themselves in the middle of the lawn, towards the chicken house.  The wet grass will probably soak into your pants and maybe even your shoes but you won't mind because at this point you're already laughing.
When you get in the house and tell Auntie the funny sight it was, she going to laugh and pour you a glass of champagne, "just because".  You will want to stand there chatting with her for a while because she's started to cook dinner and the house is warm and it feels like it's full of love, and, there is champagne in your glass.
This should just about do the trick, but there are a few last things that can really solidify the turnaround.  Realizing jeans that used to be quite snug are now loose is a good one, helping Aunt peel garlic and then watching her make and explain carbonara are big boosters, and then of course convincing Uncle to downlowd a song to play really loud and sing along to together in the kitchen is really a cherry on top of my home remedy.
I recommend this method of mood-turnaround for anybody, as often as you can get any of it.  There are no negative side effects, other than muddy shoes, fully belly, and happier heart.