Posted in Gracie's Glimmer, Poetry From A Woman Who Thinks Too Much

Sand. Love. Time and me…

Playing in the waves for an hour, letting the beach rock me
lying on my back in the embryonic, turquoise water.
Practicing letting go and trusting God.
Floating in the ocean, trusting that even if the water gets rough,
He will keep me safe.
When I feel the stress melt away, I walk out of the ocean.
I spread the blanket and lay down and reach for a handful of sand.
As soon as I fill my hand, the grains slip through my fingers.
So, you know I had to try again and again to hold a handful of sand.
I hold handful after handful of pure white sand and
no matter how tightly I squeeze, it quickly slips away.
Nothing stays but a few tiny grains of the stunning white crystals.
Time and love are so similar to sand.
I could only hold the sand with my hand open.
I hold our love in my hands and I hold on tightly, trying not to let it slip away.
But always, I am left with nothing but a few lovely grains of what was once
a sandcastle full of hopes and dreams…and the memories of that which was us.
Time and love slip through my hands even faster than grains of sand.
Some things were never meant to be restrained.
They lose their luster if you try to own them.
Sand. Love. Time and me…

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Posted in Last Ditch Effort

Love Me As I Am

You put an image around me and
you tell me stay inside the frame.
You say that this is who I have to be
do not color outside the lines!
You expect me to be who
you think I should be.
Angry, when I do not conform
I’m sorry to disappoint you
but I am going to be me.
Love me as I am, my son
Before our time is gone.
Posted in Decluttering

Goodbye Bobbsey Twins….

John has my Bobbsey Twins books.
I don’t know John very well. I met him when he bought eleven boxes of books from me.
I like any man that buys eleven boxes of books. He must be good, right?
When I called him a few days later and asked him if he would like to own my Bobbsey Twins, free of charge, he said yes.
He came back with all the books he had bought in his van, because he hadn’t found room for them in the house yet, that’s how I know he loves books.
He took the Bobbsey Twins, but he told me, “If you ever want them back, you call me.”
I thought that was an awesome thing to say.
He said that he would keep them safe and treasure them.
I love that, John, but I will never call you for those books. I let them go and I let them go into hands that will give them love and respect.
I knew I could not throw those books away or sell them at a yard sale.
Some had been sent to me by fans of my story, “The Bobbsey Twins, Dad and Me.”
Many were gifts from my husband, who was thrilled each time he found one for me.
There were about forty of them, dating from the first book, and I loved them all.
I saved one, “The Bobbsey Twins at Snow Lodge,” but there was no room for the box full of Twins in my new, tiny house on wheels.
The memories, yes. The books, no.

The Bobbsey Twins, Dad And Me

Posted in Inner Child Healing

( #10 SHE Saga) Let It Go, Let It Go

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I feel numb and She is hiding.  I know she’s furious with me and she didn’t believe that I would go through with my plan to get rid of everything that I didn’t absolutely need or want…before we moved into our tiny home on wheels.

I guess it was my turn to pitch a fit. It happened when I was decluttering tonight, when I was down to facing the boxes that I hadn’t unpacked in over ten years.

She objected over every piece I tossed. She cried. She screamed.

She was so upset that she had me walking in circles, holding things to my chest, paralyzed by grief and indecision. After about an hour of circles, I snapped.

“Stop! Stop, leave me the f… alone,” I screamed as I dumped another pile of boxes in the middle of the room. When the pile was gigantic, I sat down beside it with a kitchen trash can beside me.

She left and the silence was eerie.

I quickly filled that kitchen bag, so I went downstairs for the green yard bags and I kept going.
I dragged at least four green bags full of papers, memories, CD’s and tapes down the stairs tonight and out onto the front porch for trash day. Plus, containers and boxes full of stuff.

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, trying to capture my emotional whirlpool in a snapshot of a dress, 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.

I remembered how happy she was to buy the dress for me, and in 1983, $27.00 was a lot of money.

The dress draped my tiny hips like it was designed just for me, and it made Mum smile because back then, I seldom wore dresses.

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.

Our mind is like a computer and it captures every little thing we have ever done, seen or felt.

I threw the still rosy corsage away tonight too, 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. 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 dozens 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, 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. (Codependency, which I’m recovering from, one day at a time…amen.)

I probably went too far tonight, when I shoved She away with all my strength.
She left, but I know she will be back, so I’m going to enjoy this time without her.

It’s the first time in forever that she hasn’t been challenging me, quietly or violently.

(# 1 SHE Saga) She Wants What She Wants

Link above will take you to the complete list of She Saga posts.

Posted in Decluttering

Goodbye, My Virgin Gateway

I threw away my twenty-year-old Gateway computer today.
Probably sounds like no big deal, but she was my first tech love and my best computer ever.
She was also a virgin. I never put her on the Internet and somehow, she survived without all the little patches and urgent updates.
She was working the last time I tested her.
That was about a year ago, and she was fine, so when I sold my house this month, downsizing to a 17-foot trailer, I grabbed her, and I squeezed her into my tiny home.
I knew right away that she was too big, so I was going to double check that I had emptied her files and put her into storage, where she could live out her life in dignity, but when I plugged her in, she was gone. Dead.
A blue DOS screen pushed out white letters, asking to be connected to the Internet to boot up.
I whispered, “Hell, no. No, I don’t think so, not you, my sweet lady, you would never ask me to connect you to the Internet.”
That’s how I knew she was already gone; an imposter had taken over her system.
I’m afraid she suffered a gruesome finale because I got it in my head that I wouldn’t throw her away without taking out her hard drive.
I soon realized that twenty years ago, they didn’t exactly make it easy to get into your computer. I think they never expected us to learn how to replace our own hard drives and mother boards.
It took three screwdrivers, a hammer, a pair of scissors and a lot of stubbornness, but I pried her open and I got the hard drive out.
It was sad, really sad, because I wrote on that computer for many years, and she was my ride or die girl during the five years that I wrote for the IHRA’s Drag Review Magazine.
Aging out is rough but, I guess we all have an expiration date, even computers.
She wasn’t awake when I took her apart and I’m grateful for that and for the fact that she didn’t know how she was going to end.
She’s in the dumpster at the RV park now and yes, I threw away another thing that I thought I couldn’t live without.
My twenty-year-old year Gateway computer, once the trusted saver, organizer and keeper of my creative efforts, she was a proud lady, strong and reliable. I’ll never forget her.

Posted in Gracie's Glimmer, Poetry From A Woman Who Thinks Too Much

Wildflowers

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The breeze in my face is sweet
and it tastes like the ocean in my lungs
although it’s not.
Then again, it really is because
that’s what it tastes like to me.
Freedom is a wildflower growing
where ever the wind blows her seeds,
in a garden or in an empty field.
Freedom tastes like the ocean
and looks like wildflowers
and freedom…she dances
with the confidence of seventeen.

Jeanne Marie, 2019

Posted in Jeanne Marie

Legos and Laughter

I am completely content and happy in this moment, playing Legos with my grandson, Jonas, and my granddaughter, Mile Mae, on the playroom floor.
I’m feeling proud of Jonas for sharing half of his Legos with me and Mile, we just aren’t allowed to have weapons or figures, only blocks. (We all have our quirks.)
Later, I am watching them play in their little pool on my porch and squirting each other with squirt guns and blowing rainbow bubbles. Their laughter is so soothing, and the sounds stop time and erase my anxiety.
We go in, and I have to rescue Mile from the pink toy bucket she gets stuck in and I’m laughing so hard, I can barely pull her up.
As the sun goes down, I am watching her hanging upside down on the lawn chair, her long brown curls flowing to the floor. She is so pleased with herself and she makes me laugh inside and out. I would give anything to live in moments like these, every minute of everyday, but they are just that, moments.
At least I know how to absorb and treasure these moments now.
The only sad part for me is packing up her toys that she is taking home and she doesn’t know it’s sad, so that’s OK.
Mile is only four, and right now, she’s simply happy all her toys are going to her house
She really doesn’t understand about Grammy selling her house and moving to a house on wheels and going to live on the road.
Rolling is what they call it. I have a new language to learn.
And she won’t understand, not until she says, “Daddy, I wanna go to Grammy’s house,” and he says, “Grammy doesn’t live in her house anymore.”
It was already a hard choice, deciding whether to stay or to move on, getting rid of furniture and stuff, so much stuff, way too much stuff. Books, clothes, boots, sheets and bedspreads. Towels, dolls and pictures. CD’s, DVD’s, TV’s and furniture.
With all these awesome grandkids, it’s a triple hard choice. And Jodie Lynne…my sunshine, my daughter, my friend, I’ll miss you most of all.
After fifteen houses and six states, I just have a strong urge to leave the clutter behind, wander on my own and to see what I see each day, and to do whatever I want to do in the moment. Stop, go, eat, write, don’t stop, inhale sunshine, go to the beach, whatever.
I also never want to pack up another house and I can’t even promise myself that I’ll stay still, so a house on wheels is my solution.
I want days without people telling me I better do this, or I should do that…weeks where I only interact with my dog, Maggie Mae and God. And rest stops and sweet nights when I can indulge my creative streak.
Maybe I’ll last a month, maybe I’ll last ten years out there on my own.
I just don’t know, but I’ll never know if I don’t try.
If I’m supposed to hold still Lord, you need to show me that because I really have the urge to move on, but I’m not always right, that’s for sure.
Lord, I know I’m stubborn and hardheaded, but show me gently please, I’m already broken.
Amen.