I Love You

I Love You
I love you does not mean that I will accept
your unacceptable behavior.
I love you does not mean that I will allow
you to hurt me emotionally whenever you choose.
I love you does not mean that I will let
you crush my spirit and wound my soul.
I love you does not mean that I will let you tell me
who I am or control my decisions.
I love you does not mean that I will allow you to hurt people I love.
I love you does not mean that I will not walk away from you,
if you do those things.
I have learned through God’s grace, that I can live without you,
but I cannot live without me.

Breaking Up With Time

I do not trust you anymore.
You are not nice.
I don’t care how good we used to be together. You are sly and you are sneaky, and you are hurting me.
I go to sleep and you do horrible, cruel things to my body.
The damage you have inflicted on my body, especially over the past year is unbelievable.
Your actions are silent, so I didn’t even realize what you have been up to lately, not until I went into the bathroom to take a shower. I catch a glimpse of myself naked in the new full-length mirror. My first reaction is shock. My second reaction is grief. Tears join the shock and the grief.
When I see what you have done to my backside, I begin gasping for air. My cute little behind is gone, just totally gone. Two empty sacks have replaced the flesh I had considered mine. The backs of my legs resemble cottage cheese that has gone bad. Real bad.
Yes, I lost too much weight, but did you have to twist and punch everything I have left?
The only body parts you haven’t dominated yet are from below my knees to my ankles. (I just checked to make sure you didn’t re-sculpt them while I was writing.)
My hair, my feet, my legs, my breasts, my arms, my neck, my face, my ears, every day I find new damage.
I would like to say I am above pride in my physical appearance, but that would be a lie. I’ve never been a beauty, cute I’m always told, but cute and undamaged was good enough for me.
I trusted you for so long. You were mostly kind to me. You treated me with respect, and you were gentle with my body, for over sixty years.
I was aware that you had a bit of a mean streak, but I trusted you anyway.
Yes, there were many red flags, but I ignored them.
I was only thirty-six when I told you, “I like the grey streaks you painted in my hair. My mom had the same streaks, so I wear them with pleasure.”
You smirked, and I should have left you in the dust right then, but I didn’t.
When you pulled my hair out a few years later, I adjusted. It was never abundant anyway and as it thinned out, I just pinned it up. I asked you to stop and you just smirked, again.
You kicked the heck out of my spine long ago, so I knew you could be extremely cruel, but I thought we had leveled out, reached an agreement to be kind to each other.
When my breasts deflated, almost overnight, I said, “Oh well. I can live without plump breasts and long, flowing hair,” and then, I threw my stupid bras away.
Last summer my young grandson said to me, “Grammy, your arms are wrinkled and soft like Jell-O.” He poked one to show me.
I looked down and sure enough, it was true. Why hadn’t I noticed?
Not done yet, you had redesigned my arms.
I explained to him that it was nicer to tell a woman what was right about her, instead of what was wrong. I told him I was getting older. We agreed to close the subject of my jiggledy arms, and he gave me a hug. I was even proud of myself for handling the discovery so well.
However, my backside is the last straw and now, pulling my hair out isn’t even enough for you.
My hairdresser told me last week that my fake blonde hair is breaking off by the handfuls, no more blonding it. Blonde has been my disguise for thirty years, you jerk.
As I have slept, you’ve ravaged me. You’ve reworked one body part at a time, and I was blissfully unaware that you were indulging your freakish addiction to playing sculptor with my body.
You have gone too far, my old friend.
I’m breaking up with you at once, while I can still walk and still have clothes that fit.
TIME, you can go play your ruthless games somewhere else.
P.S. I placed the mirror on the other side of the bathroom door too. Just in case TIME doesn’t honor the break-up. I have a feeling that I’m going to need a restraining order.

 

What Am I?


I am hard and I am soft.
I have sharp edges and smooth worn curves.
I am strength and I am weakness.
I can be broken, but I am unbreakable.
I will stand by you when you are wrong,
I will rejoice when you succeed.
I will stand by you when the world walks away.
I will leave you and I will always be beside you.
I will pull inside myself like a snail when you hurt me.
I will bloom like a flower when you love me.
I am a soft place to fall.
I am the hardest place to go when you have fallen.
I will always love you
No matter what you do or become,
You can’t lose my love.
I will smother you.
I will release you,
To explore your own strengths.
I will let you walk away if you hate me,
I will keep my door open if you want to return.
I will soul glide with you.
I will cry with you.
I will fight with you.
I would take a bullet for you.
I will make mistakes that will hurt you,
But no one could ever love you more.
I am where your life began and I am
Where you will always long to return.
I am not perfect,
But God thought I was perfect for you.
I am your mother.

Such A Dilemma


Face the storm outside or the storm inside?
Such a dilemma.
If it was the end of the world
and zombies were at the window,
we would argue over which gun to load
until even the zombies got a headache.

The Night The Stuff Went Down

I think I’m having decluttering remorse.
Almost like waking up after a blackout, trying to remember each item I tossed.
“I threw away what last night?”
I don’t really need to item by item remember, because it ALL went.
What was in the last room that I attacked with the rage born from exhaustion and frustration?
Just everything I had thought was important enough to move from house to house, even if I never opened the boxes.
The next day was moving day, and I thought the last room would only take a few hours. Although the anxiety I felt every time I went in there over the past year should have warned me.
It was just a corner filled with boxes. Boxes I hadn’t opened since two houses ago, some hadn’t been opened for twenty years.
I had spent the last three weeks decluttering. Selling and giving away the contents of a ten-room house, cellar and garage.
I was on a roll. How hard could this last corner be?
I had thrown away my wedding heels a few months ago, so I thought I had toughened up.
The contents of several boxes had been scattered for weeks, opened and left, the victim of my confusion. Well, I had no choice now.

Tonight, was my deadline and I dug in, armed with kitchen trash bags. It didn’t take long for me to go downstairs and find the huge, green bags.
I always knew I was a good packer, but I don’t know how I fit so much content into those boxes.
I filled at least six green bags with CD’s and cassettes and that was just the beginning.
Some of the CD’S had been special to me. Our ten-year anniversary by Alabama I had signed, “Then Again…Forever, you and me.” I kept that one.
I had listened to and loved each CD at some time in my past.
As I looked through them, I was overwhelmed by how many there were and I began to grab handfuls, shoving them into the green bags.
So many material things I no longer needed or wanted, but surely my frustration added volume to the trash pile.
I was angry, and I was sad, and I just wanted to be free from stuff. Too much stuff.
Our mind is like a computer and it captures every little thing we have ever done, seen or felt and much of my frustration was because I was replaying those memories as I threw each thing away.
My wedding dress got special treatment. It was 3:00 a.m. and I walked outside and hung it on a tree beside the yard sale.
My neighbor was still outside because she was getting ready to have a yard sale with me, and she said, “You have to take a picture,” and of course, I did. As I took pictures, I realized that I was trying to capture my emotional whirlpool in a snapshot of a wedding dress.
The dress had fit like it was designed for me, draping my tiny hips, and it had made Mum smile, because back then, I seldom wore dresses. As I ran my fingers down the silky dress, I could see her smiling face.
I remembered the day I went shopping for it with my mum and how proud she was that I was marrying such a good man, a man who worked and took care of me and my three kids financially.
She special ordered artificial roses for my corsage and for the wedding, because I was allergic to flowers and I remembered how the florist thoughtlessly sprayed them with rose perfume and I sneezed all day.
I threw the still rosy corsage away too tonight, along with a box of wedding day souvenirs.
We never dreamed thirty-eight years ago it would end this way, my wedding dress hung in a tree for a yard sale, all alone in the dark. Us, living in separate houses. Big ouch.
Couldn’t hold on till morning. Needed to let it go, let it go.
He was here helping me finish up the packing and for the closing, and I couldn’t afford to show any weaknesses in front of him. It was a real test.
His heart was hurting as he saw me throw away our memories.
The picture Mum bought me because she thought it looked like us, my IHRA umbrella and hundreds of presents he had bought me.
I think it hit him hardest when he saw my books start to go. Fifteen house and thirty-eight years, and through it all, he’d been complaining about moving my books. I always found ways to resist his demands to get rid of the damn books, because I loved my books. I had learned that if I carried the boxes in and out of the moving trucks, it wasn’t as bad, but even then, the “weight” it added bothered him.
I usually soothe him when he’s hurting, even if he’s sad because he hurt me, but not anymore. Not anymore. Recovering codependent, yes, I am.
Now, as I rerun the night of the huge declutter through my mind, I am proud and sad and proud.
I let it go, I let it go.
I let it all go so I could move on, move into my twenty-foot Coachmen Nano Apex travel trailer and on to the next chapter of this story I am living as I create it.
I took pictures of things that touched my heart as I tossed, and that was enough stuff, for me.

 

 

When Angels Whisper…

What is she running from?

Everything. Chaos, drama, hate, confusion, connections, clutter, obligations, memories, betrayals, lost love, bad love, good love, wasted dreams, pain, wrinkles and old age.

Is that all?

Probably not. She’s a writer. I’m sure she could add to my list.

I heard her tell her four-year-old granddaughter that she moves so much because she is a gypsy.

Well, that sounds better than she’s a runner. And she just might be a gypsy,
but I think she’s confused and looking for home.

Doesn’t she know home is where you make it?

No, she keeps making a home and leaving. This time she left 95% of her belongings behind.
Stuff she’s held onto for fifteen moves.

Why?

She swore she’d never buy another house or let another person manipulate her life.
She wants to have the choice to drive away at a moment’s notice.
I heard her tell her daughter that’s why she bought the tiny house on wheels.

Well, who owns fifteen houses in six states in thirty-eight years anyway?
An extremely tired gypsy?

No, a hurt little girl, looking for her happy ending.

Well, she’s alone now. Is that her happy ending?

Yes and no. She’s happy to be able to think for herself, to make her own choices,
to be free, but she wanted to be happy with him.

Well, he made that impossible.

Yes, he did.

Well then, I’m proud of her for fighting to break free.

Me too.

Do you think she’ll be okay? Is she lonely? She looks so sad.

This has been a huge change for her, and I expected her to feel some sad,
but she’d rather be alone than allow anyone to hurt her again.
She realizes that her happy ending is in her own hands now, so yes. She’ll be okay.

I think you’re right. She’s recovering from emptying a ten-room house and watching
another chance she gave him go wrong. She’s resting, healing, physically and emotionally.

Yes, she got rid of everything, including her books. She let go of so many material things.
A little grief after such a purge is normal, but we’ll stay close to her
while she prays and figures out her next step.

Does she know we’re here with her?

Yes, I believe she does.