Journal, 10/13/21

I can’t tell anybody this, but…

I’m simultaneously the most insecure AND the most intelligent person I know.

No wonder I’m no good at Marriage.

But what are the alternatives for a woman, aged 54, who still desires connection and love? When I’m being serious, people think I’m interviewing for a husband. When I write “I’m not interviewing for a husband; I have no set agenda” on my online dating profile, I get NO responses (or if I do, I’m asked what I’m wearing).

I don’t mind admitting I’m very confused by the dating scene in 2021 for middle-aged people (God, am I going to have to call myself a “senior” next year?). I seem to be very attractive to WOMEN and COUPLES these days, which kind of freaks me out. I think these women want to be my friend, but they don’t: they want to be my friend. I don’t even know if they want me for themselves, their husbands, or both.

This really weirds me out because I’ve relied on my gut instinct my whole life, but it seems to be failing me these days.
I admit that, as a heterosexual who came of age when gender was a binary concept, I’ve become a clumsy reader of the signals and vibes I get “out there.” I’ve also been accused of being things I’ve never considered myself to be, like:
•a tease
•overly flirtatious
•too uptight
•too liberal, and [in the absence of closure, I’d have to go with]
•too damaged.

How does a person who religiously goes to therapy every week fix being “too damaged?”

I honestly don’t think I’m the problem. I’d love to go out with a male version of me. I think maybe the ones who think I’m too damaged are too damaged themselves to see my [inner] beauty?

I surely don’t want to have to fish for compliments and ‘status reports” all the time in my next relationship. In fact, let’s say it out loud together:

WE ARE DONE WITH THAT❣️

WE WANT AND DESERVE ONE GREAT BIG MESSY, DESPERATE PASSIONATE LOVE AFFAIR BEFORE WE RELOCATE PLANETS❣️

WE ARE FASCINATING – just think of all the boring first date conversations we’ve carried and made interesting. Not everyone can do that!

LET’S JUST TRY TO LOVE OURSELVES FOR A WHILE, because:

WE ATTRACT WHAT WE PUT OUT, and what WE put out is highly unique. It probably takes decades for huge Humpback whales to find their mates-for-life. I don’t imagine they have mixers and matchmakers. And they must be practically extinct or there wouldn’t be “Save the Whales” bumper stickers everywhere (maybe not everywhere NOW, but everywhere ONCE).

I think I’m comparing myself to a Humpback Whale now, which reminds me that I use metaphorical language a lot. I’m just not a typical, normal person.

And you know what? I’m so frigging glad❣️ The worst type of lonely is being anxiously attached and disconnected from the person lying next to you in bed. In a dry and dead marriage with someone you never should’ve married in the first place.

Been there, done that, paid my dues.

We’ll just hang out here with the Whales for a while, Thank You. 🐳

My Introduction on a Discord group about being an ENFP

My name is Jennifer, and I’ve been taking the Myers-Briggs for over 25 years trying to get the correct results- but I kept coming out as an ENFP. I think we are chameleons and that’s why I didn’t believe my results. I’ve dealt with a lot of trauma and chaos in my life, and my enneagram (new to me) says I’m a 4 with a 3 wing. I’m not really sure what that means, but I like Joyce’s YouTube content and that’s why I’m here. I wasn’t able to have children, so I’ve not had that grounding influence in my life that grows up many ENFPs, but I feel like my traumas have more than qualified me as a deep person. I hate to hear ENFPs are shallow because we’re anything but! In fact. I feel like I’m condemned to life in the Deep End, so I only enter the Shallow to catch my breath.

By the way, the attached photo is of bald (thank you, Taxol) 39-year-old Jennifer in one of her “chemo wigs.” She’s trying to laugh and be a good sport about it all, but she’s really hurting inside (and it’s not the port under the skin in her vena cava that hurts).

Sadly, she’s so busy fighting, she’s really out of touch with her feelings. How I wish I could warn her she needs to process these strong emotions, but it wouldn’t do any good. I honestly think she didn’t know the best words to use, so she suffered in silence, even though she was technically married to Jeff at the time. He divorced her soon after, despite a brief reconciliation after her first breast reconstruction surgery, so I think we can go ahead and say his heart wasn’t “in it” at this time. She knew the truth of this all the way down to her bone marrow.

Jeff was always traveling for work and was never around, so Jennifer drove herself to her chemo and radiation appointments. She also drove back home again, alone, arriving at an empty house after each session.

How can you blame her for her failures? Who could survive so much heartache and betrayal – because you know this was just the start – and emerge unscathed? WHO, I want an ANSWER, damnit! WHO???!

I’m so sorry, Jennifer. I know you think you shouldn’t Be Here Today because others you knew and loved are Gone. But that’s NOT your fault! Why won’t you let it go? Why do you keep punishing yourself like this!!?? You MUST stop or you will get sick again. You know how that happens with you. You are alive and THIS is your time❣️ Step in and embrace the joy already!! Relax. Have fun. GET OFF THAT FUCKING CROSS NOW!!

I’m coming to peel you down, pull out those nails, and trust me: it won’t be pretty! I honestly don’t know why you do such stupid things and think such stupid thoughts! You’re like the priest in The Scarlet Letter (you read it in the tenth grade) who self-flagellates. Only crazy, GUILTY people sit around feeling sorry for themselves all day! What in God’s name is WRONG WITH YOU!!??

Welcome to 5 minutes in my Head. I try to be nice to myself, but I literally can’t. Myself punishes Myself too much to be happy, but loves Myself too much to subject Myself to physical pain. So I’m Here Whether It’s Pleasant Or Not. Physical pain is avoided because we’ve already dealt with that, had our share of that. and are done with that. So STAY AWAY, PHYSICAL PAIN!! We’ve got enough of YOU HERE!!

Psychic pain is Jennifer’s ancestor-approved, ancestor-generated specialty, however, so she’s quite adroit at inflicting it upon herself. She’s quite the Unyielding Bitch if we’re not mincing words: Life would be so much better if she LEFT US ALONE!

Unfortunately, that’s not currently possible, so we have to mute her. It’s all we can do if we want to have any fun.

Does anyone have any duct tape?

Self-pity or The Green-Eyed Monster?

I don’t have time to write much today.  I just wanted to ‘fess up that, after my lofty musings of last Friday, I’m now back in the thick of all-too-human emotions.  I found out last night that a friend of mine, who totaled his new and fully loaded SUV while driving drunk, has just bought himself a brand new one.  Meanwhile, my car is sicker than I am.  And she looks more beat up than I do.  I haven’t exactly provided her with regular facials (I don’t wash her very often, and she sits under a sap tree), her sides have some wrinkles from a few years ago (when I opted to keep the insurance money rather than get her the Botox she rightly deserved), and lastly, her face is broken due to a little fender bender I got us into last week.  To add to her and my worries, she’s VERY old (1999; practically a “classic” in today’s world).  But she’s “Old Money” – an Infiniti gal – and her parts are extremely expensive relative to her Blue Blood (Blue Book value).  

But enough about HER. My question is this: Am I wallowing in self-pity or have I been bitten by the green-eyed monster? Am I actually jealous of someone’s new car just 36 hours before I have a scheduled double mastectomy? If so, I need the surgeons to perform an “Attitude Adjustment” while they cut, prod, and do what it is surgeons do. At a minimum, I need to write up a gratitude list of all I’m thankful for…a list which most definitely includes my trusty, dusty, and rusty car. Even if she IS thirsty all the time, and refuses to drink water!

Monday, September 10, 2012 at 12:21pm CST from my original blog

P.S. I have green eyes, so I’m pretty sure both Self-Pity AND the Green-Eyed Monster have regular rooms in my hotel (2021).

My “Chiaroscuro” Head

My comment on a YouTube video re: “Assertive vs. Turbulent” results on the online MBTI assessment:

We’re all ENFPs living in an ISTJ world, and that can be stressful when your life is lived in cycles or episodes rather than boring old linear time. I’m definitely an ENFP-T, but my Turbulence (Traumas) have made deeper as well as darker. I happen to think the juxtaposition of light and dark (chiaroscuro) is more beautiful than light alone.

From Nerdwriter1’s YouTube channel

I learned the term chiaroscuro during my upper school years at a private prep school in Atlanta, where we took weekly vocabulary quizzes from a workbook called “Wordly Wise.”

We took these quizzes – that tested our spelling and comprehension of approximately 15 new words per week – every week of every year of upper school (grades 9-12).

Since neuroscience tells me my brain was still developing at that age, I credit this process for building a large vocabulary in my head. I believe Wordly Wise is the reason I remember the meanings of odd words like “bivouac” and “chiaroscuro” over 35 years later.

So,thank you, Wordly Wise!  
By providing me with an arsenal of words, you’ve enabled me to better understand my inner and outer worlds.

Post Photo: A Philosopher Lecturing on the Orrery, a 1766 painting by Joseph Wright of Derby, demonstrates the use of chiaroscuro lighting in his work.

C’mon Y’all Let’s Exorcise!

C’mon Y’all, Let’s Exercise!
Let’s Exorcise that Voice that’s in our Minds
That Voice that Loops all through our Heads
That scolds our every move and says:
You’re not enough: You Should be Dead
Well, I say: You must go Instead
I’ve sold for cheap Your words of Dread
Now Get the Hell out of my Head!!


Don’t come back and bring your friends!
Your time with Me is at an End
I’m so sick of the Words You Say
The Words that never let me Play
I’ve told you you must pack your Bags
You’ve turned into a TOTAL DRAG
I want you out; I want to Sing
I want to be Authentic Me
All I’m Asking’s to be Free
To not Feel Shame or Misery
And Show the Truest Part of Me

C’mon Y’all, Let’s Exercise!
Let’s Exorcise that Voice that’s in our Minds
That Voice that Loops all through our Heads
That scolds our every move and says:
You’re not enough: You Should be Dead
Well, I say: You must go Instead
I’ve sold for cheap Your words of Dread

Now Get the Hell out of my Head!!

We’re really done; I swear it’s true
Those words so often said by you
No longer welcome Here are They
So find another place to Stay
I hate your voice and all it wants
Go find another soul to haunt!
I want you out; I want to Sing
I want to be Authentic Me
All I’m Asking’s to be Free

To not Feel Shame or Misery
And Show the Truest Part of Me

C’mon Y’all, Let’s Exercise!
Let’s Exorcise that Voice that’s in our Minds
That Voice that Loops all through our Heads
That scolds our every move and says:
You’re not enough: You Should be Dead
Well, I say: You must go Instead
I’ve sold for cheap Your words of Dread

Now Get the Hell out of my Head!!

We Live With a Homicidal Maniac

We Live With a Homicidal Maniac who desperately wants to kill all of the Jennifers under My Care. I’m a total crap parent, but I know how to play dirty. You don’t think I could plumb the depths of survivor guilt and child murder with a free-loving Inner Critic, do you?

I have seen the faces of Evil, Violence, Hatred, and Unspeakable Acts. They look like Me, and Their Voice criticizes Me all day, every day. The Voice and I are well-acquainted; fellow Ancients, “Old Souls”.

But We are both tiring of these millennia of dragon-slaying. I know I speak for both of Us when I say We’d really like to go on Vacation. Isn’t there ONE responsible Adult out there who’s willing to watch the Jennifers for a week or so? Hell, we’d be happy with a long weekend off at the Holiday Inn down the road!

Please check your calendars and get back to Us. If Nobody steps up, We’re going to send Our Inner Critic to terrorize Him. If Anybody offers, I promise You full immunity from Future Prosecution (it’ll look better on you than Botox, I swear!)

P.S. We know the above post was Juvenile, but we had an adrenalized day by noon-thirty, so we had to bleed. Our Inner Critic is momentarily appeased.

Keeping Low with the Kardashians

Journal, 10/07/21

https://youtu.be/srxia1lPsac

After 10 years of active avoidance of and determined disengagement from All Things Kardashian, this Family’s incessant ubiquity and unrelenting pursuit of my attention have me simultaneously crying “Uncle!” and “Enough!”

I was hoping by 2021 we could collectively agree that all women are beautiful just as they are: tall, short, curvy, hippy, short-legged, big-busted, waifish, dark, light, red, white… it’s all good because there’s Someone for Everyone.

In a culture where we proclaim to value the individual, we will still select Archetypes to emulate. I had [mistakenly] assumed these people represent the best of what we humans are capable; ordinary people who’ve found themselves in extraordinary circumstances and, to their surprise as well as our own, find themselves accomplishing extraordinary things. These heroes inspire us to forsake the comfort of Now for the anxiety of What’s Next; the status quo for a moving but more suitable target; what we know for what we’re willing to learn. Because that’s what our Role Models have done!

However, when the people we’ve elected as our Exemplars, our Paragons of Femininity, venerate vapidity, praise pretentiousness, celebrate superficiality, extoll egotism, and magnify manipulation, we need to replace them.

Or am I the only one suffering from Kardashian Fatigue?

Jenniferine

Lupine (wolf-like)
Canine (dog-like)
Feline (cat-like)
Porcine (pig-like)
Ovine (sheep-like)
Taurine (bull-like)
Limacine (slug-like)
Piscine
Elephantine
Equine
Muscine, Murine (mouse-like)
Serpentine
Aquiline (of or like an eagle)
Bovine (cow-like)
Vulpine (foxlike)
Leporine (rabbit- or hare-like)
Cervine (deer-like; moose, elk)
Avine (birdlike, but rare; Avian)
Squalene (like a shark; big fish)
Tigrine (tiger)
Delphine (dolphin-like)
Cameline
Ursine (bear-like)

July 19, 2017

What Is Love Anyway?

I’ll just let the Great Howard Jones speak for me today…

I love you whether or not you love me
I love you even if you think that I don't
Sometimes I find you doubt my love for you
But I don't mind
Why should I mind?
Why should I mind?


What is love anyway?
Does anybody love anybody anyway?
What is love anyway?
Does anybody love anybody anyway?

Can anybody love anyone so much that they will never fear?
Never worry never be sad?
The answer is they cannot love this much nobody can
This is why I don't mind you doubting


What is love anyway?
Does anybody love anybody anyway?
What is love anyway?
Does anybody love anybody anyway?

And maybe love is letting people be just what they want to be
The door always must be left unlocked
To love when circumstance may lead someone away from you
And not to spend the time just doubting


What is love anyway?
Does anybody love anybody anyway?
What is love anyway?
Does anybody love anybody anyway?
What is love anyway?
Does anybody love anybody anyway?
What is love anyway?
Does anybody love anybody anyway?
What is love anyway?
Does anybody love anybody anyway?
What is love anyway?
Does anybody love anybody anyway?

When the Heart-Soul Breaks

When the soul breaks, it tells us we’ve lost our missing puzzle piece – it’s human manifestation represents a unique shape – the ONLY shape which can return us to wholeness. We will reject people who don’t conform to the missing negative-electron-pull of that void into our Adult lives. This wound-activated expulsion of others doesn’t result in the relief we seek because it does so by what our brains are able to understand at the times when our heart was broken; at the young age we made those decisions. Puzzle Pattern Recognition at young ages doesn’t allow us to consider alternate shapes, other options all together. Since we’re closed off to these other mental paths and self-protective limitations, we stay trapped and enprisoned, jerked around by the terrifying cries from our inner Little Child – and trust me: she lives in you whether you believe it or not!

After a lifetime of consciously or subconsciously forcing other individuals to conform or leave, we die, lonely and alone.

If you want to avoid this fate, MY fate, you have to go back to the original wound, even if it isn’t a single traumatic experience. Expecting children to remember the specific events behind the heartbreaking emotions is unnecessary in my opinion. You know what first broke your heart. First and foremost, let me tell you I’m so very, very sorry that you suffered that way as a child. It wasn’t your fault, and it was wrong. I wish I could’ve comforted you then, and I know there are many decent adults out there who wish they could’ve as well. I’m sure if they heard your story, they would want to rush in and scoop you up, dry your tears, and listen as you told why you were sad or afraid. Afterwards, we’d try our very best to keep you safe from harm. If you were failed before, let’s try to heal it here and now.

You are loved, you are treasured, you are infinitely beautiful and huge-hearted. You are whole and perfect just as you are. You have individual worth and value. You are precious. You are a pearl beyond all price.

Surely you can understand we are not feeding an entitlement mentality if any human adult has never heard these words from another living soul. So you will have to be your own Another Living Soul.

In this role, you will be the Adult who then must unapologetically love, nurture, and re-parent Your Little Child to achieve the emotional stability you desire, require, and truly need to grow into the kind of Adult you want to be.

It may sound circular or ‘fluffy’, but it’s what is working for me. As long as you are seeking external solutions to this now-very concerning internal source of distress, you’ll never be free from the haunting of Your Little Child. You can INVITE the Guide, the Helper, the Guru, or even the Consultant to help, but you will always be the General Contractor for the job. No: make that the Owner Footing the Bill.

So spend your money well, do your research, document it, celebrate it, and don’t let Anyone or Anything deter your commitment, other than basic self-care. Remember: place the oxygen mask on Your Adult Self before you place it on Your Little Child.

Man’s Description of The Divine & the Diarrhea of “Literally”

Man saying he’ll only believe in a Supreme, All-Powerful Force once he has human-approved, scientifically robust evidence of His Divine existence is like a slug defending his critical analysis of Shakespeare’s views on immortality using slug trails only. It’s absurd on so many levels, I hope they don’t require written elaboration.

The above is a SIMILE

As a slug defends his critical analysis of Shakespeare’s views on immortality using slug trails, so man shakes his fist at the Cosmos and demands human-approved, human-defined evidence of a Supreme Divinity in order to believe in its existence.

The above is still a SIMILE

The Man who demands evidence of the Divine in small, digestible terms he can understand is a slug convinced he can describe Shakespeare’s views on immortality using slug trails.

The above is a METAPHOR

A man who literally demands evidence that God literally exists is like a slug literally thinking it can imagine conceptual themes in literature, like Shakespeare’s views on immortality and then literally describing them using slug trails alone. Like…literally.

I don’t know what the above statement is an example of other than how we leech every ounce of meaning from a word once it goes “viral.” I took a test in high school that asked the following question: “What is the opposite of literal language?” The answer was “metaphorical language.” I am not arguing the Strunk & White correctness of what we learned. I AM bemoaning the fact I can’t make it through a 24-hour-period without hearing the word “literally” proceed forth from at least 4 separate sets of human lips. On a “lite” day.

What I’d Tell My 7-Year-Old Self

You are beautiful and worthy and perfect just as you are. Follow your heart and don’t lose your passion.
ALWAYS choose feeling over numbing, no matter how terrifying.

Don’t let your tears frighten you, Little One. They are a gift from God Himself.

These efforts will require more bravery than you can imagine or even comprehend right now.

SO LET’S MAKE A PACT:

YOU promise ME you’ll never give up, and I can promise YOU we’re going to be okay.

I’ve seen and lived our future: we survive, but it doesn’t turn out the way we planned.
I’m sorry about that.
I tried very hard, but I just wasn’t strong enough.
It’s called Failure.
Failure” happens when, as a Big Girl, you realize all of those happy, hopeful movies you made in your mind are never going to happen.
In that moment of Despair, when you notice your Dreams are slipping away,
LET THEM GO!!
Unfulfilled Dreams don’t hurt as much once you’ve learned to forget them.

Lastly, and this is what the dictionary calls a “cliché,”:

Life is SO short, Little One.

Every moment feels forever when you’re young.
Somewhere along the line, the pace picks up and Life starts playing in fast-forward.
Time attempts to escape our grasp, and we never have enough of it.
People often behave strangely when they recognize this truth.
I know us well enough by now that I can assure you we don’t deliberately treat others badly.
Instead, we’re more haunted by the risks and chances we DIDN’T take than by the poor choices we DID.

So please, I beg you:
STOP worrying about all the things you should, shouldn’t, could, couldn’t, can, can’t, will, won’t, or might do and…
JUST DO
❣️


PS. You’ll be DOing us both a huge existential favor
(try to remember to “Google” ‘existential” one day; I know you’ll find the topic interesting)

My Devastation, 10/3/21

I don’t think I can adequately describe the devastation that results when an individual wakes up one morning to discover the Tightly-Held Beliefs She Has Clung To About Herself, Life, Humanity, and The Universe have departed. Packed up their party in hushed tones while she slept, in search of newer, fresher hearts upon which to prey.

In response and in desperation, she cuts and bleeds on the shards left behind, secretly praying for their return to her.

I don’t believe Humans are meant to survive this, though the Truly Unlucky often do.

I am sorry for bleeding on you. Writing is my own form of “cutting:”

I hurt, I bleed, I feel better.

The Biggest Loser

First and foremost, I’m not looking to marry you, so PLEASE get over yourself.  
All I want is one last torrid, passionate love affair before I die - or at least while I can still enjoy it.

Should we meet, I won’t be auditioning for a role; I will be interviewing you for one.

I don’t really care if you think I’m beautiful. I’ve fought in many wars and have the scars to prove it. I happen to find them beautiful and unique (p.s. why aren’t we talking about your body here?).

I don’t need your help. C’mon, Dude, I’m a two-time breast cancer survivor. Do You honestly think I need your help??

I don’t need your money, I’m fine in that department, thank you very much.

I don’t need a supervisor, but I would enjoy spending time with (one or more) fellow travelers and/or adventurers.

I don’t need your advice, though I know you love to give it. I’m actually far more resourceful than you apparently think.

I’m not looking for Someone To Take Care of Me, thank you very much. I’ve pretty much done that my entire life. Do you honestly think I abandoned my sensibilities when I met you?

I never asked you to tell me I’m “an amazing woman” while breaking up with me by text. I only asked you to tell me over the phone. Was that really such an unreasonable request?

I never asked you to fix me. I only asked you to accept me as I am.
(Oh, and I almost completely forgot about this part and had to add it later)…
We are both broken people: if we haven’t made some horrible choices by this age, then we haven’t lived at all.

I never asked you to love me. I only asked for a temporary oasis; an emotionally safe place where Little Jennifer could occasionally come out and play. Loving her is all that matters to me, because she’s been hurt enough.

Last and most importantly, I NEVER asked you to pity me! I refuse to allow another human being to turn me into a victim again. So you go right ahead and pretend like WE never happened. I’m fulfilled by being alive enough to have made such a bad impression in the first place!

Let’s Change Topics Now and Take a Little Inventory of What I DO Have to Offer:

•I’ve got my own car and my own money.
•I’ve got a bucket list of sexual fantasies I’ve yet to fulfill.
•I’ve got an entire wardrobe of fluffy, frilly, and sexy lingerie.
•I’ve got a scary high IQ
•I have no small children, adolescent children, adult children, or grandchildren.
•I’ve got a dirty mind and
•Too much time on my hands.

So in the End,
Who was the Biggest Loser?

It’s hard being an ENFP in an ISTJ world.

Journal, 9/29/21

It’s hard being an ENFP in an ISTJ world.

In fact, I want to start my own planet and fill it with ENFPs (certain other types can always visit). On this planet, we measure time in cycles, stages, and “phases,” rather than in boring old linear order.

We also get to run this planet according to “ENFP Rules:”

No need for dusty legal books filled with obscure laws. Our Rules can be summed up as follows:

Be nice, follow your heart, love deeply, assume the best but prepare for the worst, sing Karaoke, and don’t EVER consider yourself better than anyone else.

Also, you MUST call if you EVER need my help. Of course I can’t promise to be available that far in advance, but I can and do promise I’ll get back to you just as soon as possible.

Nursery Rhymes & Fairy Tales

Humpty Dumpty sat on a wall
Humpty Dumpty had a great fall
And all the kings horses and all the kings men
Couldn’t put Humpty Dumpty together again.

We whisper these horrible words into the ears of small children. How hopeless Humpty Dumpty must have felt!

Next project: a brand new set of fairy tales about ordinary people doing extraordinary things. Let’s get poor victimized Cinderella some therapy and a new place to live. Let’s give Rapunzel a key to that wretched tower, a good haircut, and a new job where she’s appreciated. I guarantee one day she’ll know her own strength.

While we’re at it, Prince Charming needs a vacation and some hobbies. He’d probably cry tears of relief just to learn he doesn’t have to be charming all the time (I know I certainly would). And talk about a high-stress job?!?! Not only does he slay dragons all day, he’s on call all night should any of his damsels find themselves in distress. Or need rescuing. Or have a flat tire.

I know that I don’t want to lose our one and only Prince Charming to Adrenal Failure.

Your thoughts?

Insomnia, You Ruthless Malcontent!

(Apparently Revised YET AGAIN on 07/06/17)


Insomnia, you ruthless malcontent!
Your designs on me leave me raw and spent.
Already the victor with the rising of the sun,
As I stand broken, 'fore the day has yet begun.
I brace myself & wobble from my tent
Approaching you with a victim's contempt
For I know you have the upper hand
as sleep is something I cannot demand

Instead I issue a plaintive cry
As I ask and beg and ask again "Why?"

"WHY are you withholding something rightfully mine?
The right to renew and kick-start my mind"

I receive no reply, no answer to my query;
No sleep, it seems, no nighttime fairy.

I see myself from far away, submitting to my fate,
When desperate thoughts embolden me to rouse one last debate.

With shattered mind, I genuflect, imploring for some peace,
Pleading for, with all my mind, an hour of sweet release.

My thoughts keep pace,
Can’t change this race
I'll never have relief.

My sorrows then,
With worries spin
Into a deep and scratchy-eyed grief.

Crayonz & Skyscrapers

We live in a world of Ladders, Construction, and Skyscrapers.   
As such, we value striving, upward progression, and the brick-by-brick determination to build Something from Nothing.
Without complaining.
Ever.
We design a social system and infrastructure that reflects our collective values.
This includes laws, penalties, procedures, forms, filing, timelines, deadlines, highway lines, and grocery store lines.
Society reveres its Builders, Climbers, Implementors, Maintainers, and Worker Bees.
Language reflects our values, so we use phrases like:
Reaching the top
Climbing the ladder
Hitting the glass ceiling
Working his way up


Will there ever be an alternative world for the few who live their lives in non-linear cycles?
Will there ever be a time when we don’t judge the souls flailing and thrashing about under the weight of so much structure?
Will we ever truly value the Quirky and the Strange among us?
Will we ever see the Beauty in the stories of our Exquisite Oddballs?

These are the people who add color and contrast to the world. I, for one, don’t want to swap out my 43-inch technicolor plasma screen for an old black and white set.

A Child Cries, Unheard

(Revised 9/27/21)

If Grown-Up You met Little Me,
Would you seize Opportunity
To Spend some Time Alone with Me?
So you could have your way with me?

If Cunning You met First-Grade Me,
And no adults were there to see,
You’d whisper that You dream of me,
In fear, I’d turn to watch TV.

If Evil You met Trusting Me,
You’d kill the innocence in Me.
You’d carve Your wounds of Pain on Me,
And strip me of my dignity.

Tell it, Sir, Please tell it true.
I pray there’s still some Good in You.

Mister, What’s Your Rationale
For Why You Chose to Steal a Child?


You Swear that there’s a Voice to Blame,
A Voice Who Bears Your Face and Name.
The Voice Who Bound me to the Floor,
Is this the voice You can’t ignore?

To Some You May Look ‘Plain’ outside,
But I’ve seen Hatred in your eyes
I’ve Also Smelled Your Putrid Stench,
As my Life’s Flame was slowly Quenched.

You think You’ve Gotten Rid of Me,
But You Have Yet to Fall Asleep
You’ll Find No Peace Within Your Dreams

For I’ll Haunt You Relentlessly.

There are slightly modified versions of my poems on my iPhone, within my Clouds, on my laptop, on social media, or scratched out by hand and forgotten. “Revised on XX/XX/2X” serve as code for “Found On [date]”, even if I’ve only found the original.

In other words: you may find some duplication here, but I can guarantee all repetition is unique.

A Child Cries, Unheard

If Grown-Up You met Little me,
Would you seize Opportunity
To Spend some Time Alone with me?
So you could have your way with me?
When Grown-Up You meets Little me.

If Cunning You met First-Grade me,
And no adults were there to see,
You’d whisper that You dream of me,
Embarrassed, I would blush and freeze.
When Cunning You meets First-Grade me.

If Evil You met Trusting me,
You’d kill the innocence in me.
You’d carve Your wounds of Pain on me,
And strip me of my dignity.
When Evil You meets Trusting me.

Tell it, Sir, Please tell it true.
I pray there’s still some Good in You.

Please Mister, What’s Your Rationale;
What Made You Steal a Little Child?


You Swear that there’s a Voice to Blame,
A Voice Who Wears Your Face and Name.
This Voice Who Bound me to the Floor,
Is this the Voice You Can’t Ignore?

You think You’ve Gotten Rid of me,
But I’ll Haunt You Relentlessly
Expose the Hell Behind Your Eyes.
They’re all I saw before I died.

Revised 9/26/21

Poem for A Hero During the Pandemic

To keep us safe, we follow rules
Like wearing masks and closing schools.
Some even force good friends apart,
But they can’t keep you from my heart!
I plan to use some words that rhyme
To cheer you in this trying time.
I’ll start by writing down a list
Of the things about you I have missed:
The things that make you so unique,
Your “adjectives” (or so to speak).
Let’s start with Feature Number One:
It’s your kindness and your com-pash-un!
Not a single soul has got you beat,
No one on earth is half as sweet.
This special trait leads to the next:
You’re very patient; rarely vexed.
You keep your cool when temps arise,
Your calm can even neutralize
Drama, chaos, much amiss
Still you don’t discount,
dismiss
Others’ feelings in such states
You simply help folks regulate
Thoughts and passions out of whack,
You settle folks with still feedback.
Let’s venture now to Number Three:
Of course it’s gener-o-sit-tee.
When this specific trait’s assessed,
You’re head and shoulders from the rest.
I have the proof to claim this fact:
You’ve always been there, had my back.
Which takes us on to Feature Four:
Your LOYALTY is much adored
By all those folks who call you “friend”,
We’ll all stay true until the end.
I’m blessed to know that I am one
Of a lucky group who You have known
The super-special man that’s YOU,
Of this I’m sure, for its quite true.
So Mr. G, heed my request:
Stay real sage and get some rest.
For once this Covid mess is through,
I’ll finally lay my eyes on You!

Sadly, Mr. Gordon Wilkinson, WW2 and Vietnam veteran, passed away in Spring of 2021. I will be sharing more about this amazing man.

My Demanding Teenager

June of 2009 through June of 2010 has been a tough year….on my car! Poor thing’s been banged up more than I have and is even older than I am in car years (1 year of human life equates to approximately 2,000 or 3,000 miles, depending).

Her latest “emergency procedure” involved a blowout on the highway (I haven’t had a salon blowout myself in ages!), which somehow necessitated the purchase of … FOUR new tires.

She is my petulant teenager, always getting her way with me and my limited discretionary funds! Seems she’s constantly asking for more and more $$$ for the gas station, facials and massages at the body shop, and LOTS of ongoing maintenance. She likes to be turned on (new battery a few months ago), get regularly inspected by some rather dirty-looking men, and now – expensive shoes for all four feet! And at prices I’d never even consider for my OWN shoes!

Who says I’m not a parent?

2010

Come Inside


I want you to knock on my private door.

When I answer, I want you to come inside.

Let me welcome you into my body, my life.

I want you to invite me for dinner.

I want you to eat me alive.

I want you to kiss me and give me a delicious surprise.

I want to embrace all of you.

I want to give you all I have to give.

I want your heart to meet mine in the place that it lives.

2011

Sunday Mornings as a Child (in the ‘70s 😉)

Unlike the more recent Saturdays of My Life, I used to rise very early. It would be a terrible waste to sleep through Saturday cartoons, so an internal alarm clock woke me earlier than my electric one did on school days. Though I remember numerous arguments with siblings regarding TV content on my family’s one TV, we managed a delicate truce on Saturdays. Chalk it up to a shared love of programming. Cartoons brought out our best qualities: I was willing to endure my brother’s monster shows because I knew one of my favorite shows would come next: Lassie’s Rescue Rangers, Road Runner, or my all-time favorite, Scooby Do. Those mornings were memory-making moments in time for us. We never bothered to change out of our crumpled nightgowns or pajamas, nor did we waste time running a brush through our hair. Waking adults only led to parental demands that we leave the den and come into the kitchen for breakfast, so we usually tip-toed down the stairs as quietly as possible. Breakfast, when it could no longer be avoided, usually involved a quick meal of slurped-down cereal. The boxes themselves were more interesting those days, but best of all, they often contained “toys” – cheap items that usually couldn’t be “played with,” but which were the source of many fights over ownership nonetheless. I have a special place in my heart for those long mornings that, unfortunately, became afternoons. “Afternoons” began when the TV programming switched from cartoons to sports, and fathers replaced children on the couches.

2011

Insomnia, You Ruthless Malcontent!

Insomnia, you ruthless malcontent!
Your designs on me leave me raw and spent.
Already the victor with the rising of the sun,
As I stand broken, 'fore the day has yet begun.
I brace myself & wobble from my tent
Approaching you with a victim's contempt
For I know you have the upper hand
As sleep is something I cannot demand.
Instead I issue a plaintive cry
As I ask and beg and ask again "Why?"
"WHY are you withholding something rightfully mine?
The right to renew and kick-start my mind"
I receive no reply, no answer to my query;
No sleep, it seems, no nighttime fairy.
I see myself from far away, submitting to my fate,
When desperate thoughts arouse in me one last debate
With shattered mind, I genuflect and implore again for peace,

Pleading for - with all I have - an hour of sweet release.

But alas! My thoughts keep up the pace,

My mind can’t stop its race:
I'll never have relief.
My sorrows then,
with worries spin
Into a deep and scratchy-eyed grief.

The Attack on My Heart


My heart is an organ you seem to enjoy
Batting around, like a cat with its toy.
It’s been so very long since you took your love back,
My heart’s now a target for skillful attack
With such a zeal that it seems clear to me
These assaults must spur in you maniacal glee.
How did your feelings so easily flip,
Exchanging the truth for the lies on your lips?
Your professions of love are now shredded and torn,
While once full of beauty, they’re rancid with scorn.
Your poison-tipped barbs seem designed to confuse,
Perplex and provoke, berate and elude
That true Connection I swore that we shared.
Your once warm affection now has been pared,
Into a meanness of scratch, spit and bite;
Wielded by knife-words you‘ve sharpened with spite.
You seem to take pleasure in tripping me up,
Watching me fall and then ripping me up.
And though I know it’s not good for my mind,
The past is a movie I’m condemned to rewind.
All the while searching for the bits and the pieces
The clues to portend of your whims and caprices,
Or any indication the man I once adored
One day would treat me like a Ten Dollar Whore.

The Gorgeous Flame

Beauty was awareness and clarity
Insecurity, Trepidation, and Innocence.
It was wide-open spaces, full of promise
Daydreams and night dreams of That To Come
It was humanity and anxiety and blissful unawareness of the deeply-buried consciousness of Now
It was sleep from the touch of head-to-pillow to the alarm clock’s pre-dawn shriek
It was yesterday; and it was golden, and it was pure

And I didn’t even know.
I didn’t even know.

How I long for the fears of youth
And simple problems easily solved
I ache with the final passing of Thoughts-Future
That once roused me when I fell and propelled me forward,
Despite my child’s timidity that sought to hold me back
Time alone wasn’t the enemy, Nor the immersion in grief

Instead it was the consequence of a poor choice, seemingly therapeutic at the time

to bury,
to extinguish
that exquisite flame
which took me to the Sun
and dropped me back again.

Autum, 2016

[Karaoke] Konnects Me to My ❤️‍🔥

My YouTube channel, Karaoke Konnection:

https://youtube.com/user/AgainsttheGrain1000

1. I Will Survive; (Like a…Cockroach)


https://share.icloud.com/photos/0s57Ps87bMGgu23KJZz8S1ZBQhttps://youtube.com/user/AgainsttheGrain1000

2. I’ve Never Met Another Living Soul (other than myself) Who Possesses Such a Cornucopia of Gestures, Facial Expressions, and Whole-Body Movement to Communicate Both Inspiration and Seriousness (examples of the latter to follow, including The Partial Telling of My Story, below)

https://share.icloud.com/photos/0RUGCiMp1gYdutHVM9NRwMDOA


3. The Two-Fisted Microphone Dance That’s Currently Sweeping the Country
(I either spared you an earache or deprived you of a belly laugh when I edited out 85% of the song).

https://share.icloud.com/photos/0eWq5lIKXqTX9vYDU3vVPIXAQ


4. They’re All Dirty

https://share.icloud.com/photos/0jwifomqb_6Q6zSViSwlp-jRw


5. Having a bit of a Diva moment, I confess… fortunately it passes quickly.

https://share.icloud.com/photos/0jwifomqb_6Q6zSViSwlp-jRw


6. When you’re the oldest person in the whole place and no one has ever heard your song before (good thing it plays in your head and brings you joy!):

https://share.icloud.com/photos/0jwifomqb_6Q6zSViSwlp-jRw

7. Not Karaoke, but another video: The Partial Telling of My Story:

https://youtu.be/2zUHBaxT8f0

A Lavish/Ravish Kind of Love

Pour out your heart and with it do lavish 
Your love onto me, and my body please ravish.
The strength of your presence, it beckons me close;
Banishes the fear that leaves me exposed.
Your body beside me makes no room for shame:
I feel full of beauty when you breathe my name.
The confidence you engender calls out to my heart,
It tells me it’s fine that I don’t want to part.

Instead, what I want is to grow a great union
Of body, soul, and spirit in God-ordained fusion.
No longer searching for places to hide,

As all that I am warms to meet you inside.
Again and Again. Forever.

The Language of Love, Revised

Oh! To be known and yet loved for my flaws,
Fills me with hope and gives me great pause.
To think that these gifts
Come without any "ifs"
Makes your words start to stick,
Building trust brick by brick,
And truth day by day,
And all of the while, the words that you say
Begin to sink in; they seem quite sincere,
Both arousing my trust and ousting my fear.
I’m feeling new things that I’ve never yet known,
Could they, just this once,
be my very own?
I don't have the words to describe all this new
Emotion and Growth and Questions without clues.
I only know this mystery transcends my go-to speech,
Its translation is a language grasped only by us each.
When I speak in silence, we both understand,
It’s in moments like these I’m so glad you’re my man!
It is true I feel safe when I’m wrapped in your arms,
Free from all danger; free from all harm.

In you I’ve found treasure.
And exceptional pleasure.
All beyond measure.

2017, Revised 2021

The Replacement Queen

My once “Lifetime Love” stole my whole identity,
And all the while, right there in front of me,
He dangled with pride his shiny new love
Who, he proclaimed, fit as snugly as a glove
On the hand of the fam’ly who now said I was too small.
After years of gifts aplenty, I had given them my all.
My fam’ly’s new adventures were no longer shared with me,
All access was cut off, and my presence sold as cheap.
I was barely out the door when the new Queen took my place
Taking on my name and usurping my old space.
With barren, empty pockets, I was banished from my home,
And told to hurry up so they could shine the new Queen’s Throne.
As this richer, clever Queen with great cunning took my place,
The nine years of my footprints were summarily erased.

2021

The Days of Wine and Roses with my First IPhone

The Days of Wine and Roses are definitely OVER between me and my new iPhone (w/AT&T).

I was so taken in the beginning with its glitz, the bells and whistles, the fact that it knew so much about me — even the way it FELT in my hands. Not to mention it always looked good and lasted forever (I was a Palm Centro/Sprint girl at the time; maybe that explains the initial mind-blowing infatuation?). Now I’d just be happy if my new “smartphone” followed through on TEN PERCENT of his puerile pillow promises.

2011

I Will Answer

I want you to call my name. I will answer you.

I will welcome you by giving you deeper access to me.

Forever deeper and deeper I will respond, waiting in breathless silence to hear your heart whisper my name. It is our mating call; no one can hear it but us.

Keep calling to me …. A bottomless ocean will greet and carry you. Its waves belong to you. Again and again it begs for you to ride its surf, slide through its wetness, and experience the exhilaration of crest meeting sand.

All this is yours. You must be careful. The water is powerful and needs a skillful rider. Call to me over the roaring ocean. I will hear you. I will show you where the ancient hidden treasure is. Drink from me and I will quench your thirst.

May, 2011

This Battle…Again?? 2012

“Women who are diagnosed with breast cancer at its earliest stages have a 93 percent rate of surviving for at least five years, according to the American Cancer Society. The survival rate drops to 81 percent once the disease has progressed to Stage II. If the breast cancer was at Stage III when it was discovered, the survival rate drops to 67 percent. Women with Stage IV breast cancer have a 15 percent survival rate. The American Cancer Society notes that every woman’s situation is different and that new treatments are continuing to improve survival rates among women with breast cancer.”

Thank you, Jesus, for bringing that little pea-sized pellet to my attention so early. I’m ready to war against this disease again, and I hope I learn something this time that will prove useful to others heading down the same path. I thank you also for the brilliant team of doctors you have assembled for me – even as I must depend on government assistance for their services. These men (the last time, in Dallas, you provided me with a gifted team of women) are truly a “dream team.” Knowing 3 members of this team will be diligently working on me for 6-7 hours next Wednesday confirms Your Presence in all things. I thank You that I am truly in the palm of Your hand – the safest, calmest, and most protected place I could hope to be. Thank You for giving me a spirit of power, love, and a sound mind. Anxious fear never comes from You, and though it tries to infect me with a vigorous and continual onslaught, I have only to praise You to obtain a blessed and calming reprieve. I know that you inhabit the praises of Your people, and I am proud to count myself as one of Yours. Please give me the guidance and supernatural strength to glorify You throughout this process…. let my words be Your words, and my steps those You have chosen in building a path for me. Lastly, Lord, I ask You to fill in for me where I fall short on this journey. For, even though my goals are high and spiritual, I am still bound by an earthly body of flesh and bone. And even though I want to resist the desires of my flesh, I am sad to be losing some very important (to me!) parts of that flesh. You alone can turn my mourning into dancing; You can bring addition from what is taken away; joy from loss and grief. After all, I’m just a girl – and a flawed one at that – but You see me as so much more. You’ve adopted me, justified me, cleansed me, and turned me into a much-beloved Royal Daughter. You gave up SO much more on the cross than what I am reluctantly parting with – and You did so willingly and absolutely! Thank you for turning me into a Princess the moment I chose You, despite what You know about me. For you have known me from my mother’s womb, even before the foundations of the earth. Still my fast-beating heart, Lord, and help me keep my focus on You. Amen and amen.

You’ll notice I don’t write about Jesus very much anymore. We’re not on the outs, we’re just taking a breather. 9/2021

SEVEN GAMES TO EXPLORE YOURSELF AND OTHERS

1.CONVINCE ME!

(2-6 Players, Rules Expand with More than 2 Players):

Convince Me! is a debate game which allows one player 5 minutes to convince the other of his or her position towards an issue of frequent debate: if it’s talked about on social media, on television news shows, or at family dinners and cocktail parties, it’s a potential topic for an earnest and heated game of Convince Me! Methods for selecting the specific topics for debate are described in further detail below. However, if you understand half of a nighttime talk-show host’s opening monologue, you are well-equipped. Since Player 1 chooses the initial stance being taken on the first round of Convince Me!, he will choose to go right, left, in the middle, or altogether different in his debate.

After each player completes his or her 5 minute argument (aka: does a Convince Me!), the other player will articulate a 15-30 second summary of their “opponent’s” view: this is merely a brief restatement of the original argument, allowing player 2 to communicate he/she understands the original viewpoint and clear up any misunderstandings. Player 1 approves or corrects the argument if necessary – this is NOT a time to debate the topic further, however. Its sole purpose is clarification and it shouldn’t take longer than 30 seconds. The next step is for Player 2 to articulate a differing view from Player 1’s (his or her opportunity to perform an opposing Convince Me!). It should follow all of the same steps to express, restate, and clarify as the original Convince Me! – and should do it in the same time allowances. At the end, if this is more of a conversation than a game, you can debrief your Convince Me! and how you really think…or just allow the conversation to proceed organically. If this is being played as a game, particularly if there are more than 2 players (but no more than 8), it has to be played as a partial spectator sport: when the two active players are doing a Convince Me!, the remaining players should be actively watching and/or participating in some other way (cheering, encouraging, picking sides, whatever). Then after the 1st

Convince Me!, the table goes to the next player pair. They play their own turn of Convince Me! Choices must be made as to whether extemporaneous pairings are made immediately before play or at the very beginning; whether topics of debate are chosen immediately before play, selected for them by the group or another playing pair, or even chosen arbitrarily from scraps containing topics previously-brainstormed by the group or printed from a standardized list

*There is a difference between the conversational version of Convince Me! and the wildly popular game version. If you are simply playing conversational Convince Me! you can choose to debate the topic of your choice. Some experts even recommend using the Convince Me! framework as a means for resolving marital and relational disputes.

2.FIVE MINUTES

You will receive 5 open-ended questions selected by the other player and will have 30-60 seconds to answer each to the best of your ability within that time frame. Examples include;

1. What’s your favorite musical composer, group or band and why?

2. What’s the best movie you’ve seen in the last 5 years and why?

3. Do you like your older daughter’s new husband? Why or why not?

4. What is your son’s most native gifting and do you encourage its expression?

5. Think about a moment in time when you remember saying to yourself: “I am so happy. What were you doing and what was going on around you?

Next, player 2 gets to ask the same 5 questions or a different set of questions. Methods of selecting questions are the same as they are in Convince Me! (selected extemporaneously by the asking player, selected randomly from scraps of previously chosen questions, provided by spectator players, or chosen from a standard list).

3.SELL YOURSELF

You have 30 seconds using real-life examples to state why you’d be the perfect person to fill a position as a ___________ (insert other player’s choice). An example is “Why you’d make an excellent PLUMBER or BAKER or AUTO MECHANIC using real-life experiences. The more challenging and incongruent the better, though you can start easily and work your way up to the harder ones. After player 1 finishes, it switches over to next player, but in any round, he or she is allowed to say “You’re Fired” if you’re not REALLY trying!!

4.EXPLAIN IT TO ME LIKE I’M A GUY (or GIRL):

Here you explain something to a member of the opposite sex the exact way you’d explain it to friend of your same gender. The most interesting explanations come from questions of an interpersonal nature. For example:

1. “Explain your last breakup to me like I was a guy (or a girl, depending).”

2. “Explain the reasons for your divorce.”

3. “How do you feel about your daughter’s boyfriend?”

4. “Describe your dating experience so far.”

Provide the explanation (between 60-120 seconds, unless you opt to relax the time constraints – it’s more exhilarating with the limits; more relaxed without). Switch to the other player and have him/her answer the same question the same way – as if to a good friend of the same sex.

5.EXPLAIN IT TO ME FROM A MAN’S/WOMAN’S PERSPECTIVE:

This isn’t explaining the topic TO a member of the same sex; rather it’s explaining it to your date (or friend of the opposite sex) from the perspective of someone of your gender. It’s not a debate, it’s a creative game and there are no right or wrong explanations. You can play it stereotypically (all Andrew Dice Clay-like or Stepford Wife-like) or didactically. It’s one player’s chance to get the opposite sex’s view on topics of interest. Or simply to create a spontaneous, amusing, or even over-the-top farcical explanation from the point of view of a character – like a drama exercise. The choice is yours. Some topics could include (female-generated for men to expound upon):

◦ Why men are interested in the whole “Sugar Baby Concept”

◦ Do men really “get scared” sometimes and need to pull away, or is that just a line? And why?

◦ Why do so many men watch pornography?

◦ What do most men watch when they watch it and then why?

◦ What does it feel like to have lots of testosterone combined with youth (ie, what does it feel like to be a teenage boy?)

(Maximum 3 minutes for each issue).

6.FIVE FAST FREE-FALL:

(15 seconds each)

1. 5 favorite bands

2. 5 favorite songs

3. 5 favorite movies

4. 5 nouns that begin with the letter J

5. 5 verbs that begin with the letter I

6. 5 adjectives that could describe a bike

7. 5 best cities for museums, musical performances, and other forms of artistic expression

8. 5 best cities for a romantic vacation

9. 5 happiest moments (45 seconds for this one)

10. 5 kitchen items and their Spanish equivalent (30 seconds)

11. Last time you felt scared (only 1 answer needed; no time limit)

Extra credit round:

—Last 5 times you were disappointed (45 seconds)

—5 Best Vacations Ever

7.IMAGINE

You start by stating your story situation. This is a good default:

“Imagine you were the King of Texas, like a member of a monarchy. You have jewels and mansions and personal wealth and you can never be removed from the job. You wake at leisure from a beautiful bed and the first thing you do is………….. ‘because you want to’ ……… “ (you have to provide a reason for what you do before handing it to the other player). Then player 2 says:

“Then you ……….. because you want to ………”. It goes back and forth like this until the story runs its course or you can tweak the method of play by setting an arbitrary time limit in which the challenge is to think and answer quickly. Both types of play constitute a fantastical game where together you build an entertaining story. You can play it straight and easy, but it’s actually more fun if you each ‘reach high’ and the player who follows you has to provide answers that actually make (even unrealistic or creative) sense. The goal is to create a story without bounds, being clever but silly in the process. The benefit of this game is that it usually results in laughter – which we all know is good for the soul and contributes to overall “salud.”

I think most of these games are best with 2 players sitting face-to-face, but they can all easily be modified to include up to 6 players.

WHO WRITES THIS KIND OF STUFF?? AN ENFP, I GUESS.

May, 2021

Upon Contemplating a Second Marriage, 5/2014

“Am I Really, Really, REALLY Going To Do This Again?”

So many newly engaged or married couples talk about the husband’s “crazy ex-wife”.  This not only defies logic (how’d these same women become sane so quickly in order to marry again?), but it takes the focus off the mistakes we made in the past and dooms us to make them again.  So I think it’s normal to consider a second marriage with equal parts expectancy and caution.  I like that in the impending union on my horizon, we don’t blame our prior spouses for our past failures.  We look to our own contributions to those failures, and how we now relate to each other in this new relationship.  Most of all, we ask our Holy Father for grace, grace, and more grace to create a relationship that is pleasing to Him.

All this doesn’t mean I don’t have concerns.  Looking at 2nd marriage statistics ALONE admonishes that I “get [me] to a nunnery”, and fast!  Then there’s the seemingly impossible task of joining one’s relatives, resources, IRAs, emotional baggage, health conditions, and place of residence in middle age.  Add taste, furniture, and ART WORK on top if it all, and simple “dating” starts to sound good again!!

But I’ve been blessed to stumble across someone who loves me from his deepest place, who is willing to compromise on many of those difficult issues, and – most of all – is willing to put up with ME! I know I’m friendly and intelligent still pretty hot at 47 (hey, I’m trying to be objective here!).

But what’s also true is that I am NOT the easiest person to be married to. I hate going to the grocery store; but he doesn’t. I despise cooking; he happens to be very good at it. I’m a two-time breast cancer survivor; he doesn’t care. If anything, he’s proud of me. So as I told family earlier this week, this love of mine has seen me in the muck, and his response has been to help me out. But he’s not just a “fixer”: when the time comes – and it’s coming – he’ll also be content to sit back and watch me soar. That’s love, I think. (2014)

DAMN, WAS I EVER WRONG…Again! Divorced in 2016.