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All hands on deck. 

Both hands on the wheel at the 10 o’clock and 2 o’clock positions. 

Houston, we I have am the situation. 

Multiple choice.  Correct answer ~ all of the above.

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Yesterday I sat in my friend’s car and visited for about 3-1/2 hours, give and not take an hour or so.  That’s after we had sat across from one another in a restaurant booth, eating breakfast and visiting for about an hour and eleven minutes.  We had not seen one another for a goodly amount of time and when we do get together, we talk.  For a long time, we talk.  Our best conversations have taken place in one or the other of our vehicles throughout the years.  And our friendship spans multiple years and encompass umpteen life changes and choices of both the minor and the major variety. 

So it was not uncommon that our tete-a-tete included the revisiting of past romantic relationships.  For me, one love affair in particular still has a hold in my heart.  A flame, if you will, that has not gone dark and cold.  My little meander down memory lane seems to have knocked some emotional debris loose and onto my path or into my heart like little sparkling diamonds swirling around in a gold pan mixed all in with the fool’s gold.  I think in this scenario, I may be the fool and that all that sparkles is definitely not diamonds but instead perhaps a woman-made synthetic imposter. 

Nonetheless.  My heart is a bit blue.  A bit bruised from the memories of the long ago infidelity, deceit and not enough love.  The saying that time heals all wounds is not really true.  What is true in this narrative is that time has softened the heart pain and there is distance even in the nearness of the flame.

These past few weeks have been an exercise in cravings, delayed satisfaction, impulsive choice making, setting aside, procrastination, misplacing my mojo, re-discovering my mojo, percolating, marinading, and popcorning ideas, thoughts, theories, plain silliness, deep convoluted thinking meanderings and missing my blog. 

What I have been up to and the revolving re-occuring topics in my head have included, but have not been limited, to:

the hour and minute combination of 11:11 and the significance I have ascribed to this time

~

Spring Fever, which morphed into Sunshine Fever, which changed to Restless Life Syndrome

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loving my job, total dissatisfication with the same job, searching for new job, applying for new jobs

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retirement preparedness, freaking out that I have failed, as in utterly, to formulate any such plan,

vesting, vacillating between commitment to stay for 3+ years to wear this retirement vest, back

to freaking out at the thought of such a long term commitment

~

health issues, tipping over, milestones in sleeping upright, off low sodium plan, back on,

yo-yo eating plan

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poor body image, hating, shameful feelings, attempts to embrace my physical self

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vacations, destinations, monetary commitment toward vacations, gratitude for abundance

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Setting aside, walking through, moving around, navigating life’s detritus, waking up, being amazed,

feeling flummoxed, groaning disappointment, side-splitting hilarity, tears of pain and surrender,

loving and receiving affection

Man alive!  No wonder I have been absent.  That there is whole hella lot of living. 

Yes, indeed. 

Do you remember those little label guns?  The kind with the revolving alphabet and the colorful strips of label tape?  You would spin the alphabet to the desired letter and then press the trigger, which would cause the letter to be stamped onto the tape.  The letters would be raised and felt all bumpy when running your fingers over the finished product.  Once you had spun and punched out the desired word or words, you would pump the trigger a couple of times to make the tape long enough to cut without spoiling your last letter. 

Then came another part, the part of peeling the backing from the tape, leaving the adhesive so you could then position the label wherever your heart desired and then press it into place where the label would live happily ever after.  Or until you decided to replace it with another label or somebody rubbed the bumpy little ridges too much and dislodged the brightly colored identifier. 

That is when the fun would come to a screeching halt or if that sounds a little too dramatic when discussing the life of a label, that’s when the adhesive hell would begin.  The hell of removing the sticky white-ish adhesive residue crap that the once merry and useful label left behind.  You see that is when the polish remover would come galloping in to the rescue to make the world right again or at least less sticky. 

This morning I was thinking about labels.  That human need to categorize most anything and everything that comes down the pike, around the bend, over the hill and in our dales.  I think naming, labeling and categorizing serves to help make sense of our lives, our worlds so to speak and in making sense then we feel safer, less vulnerable to the largeness of life. 

What I am pondering today is whether the labels I have chosen ~ spelled, punched and stuck to the walls of my psyche ~ whether they are helpful or harmful, clarifying or stigmatizing.  What labels might need to be re-named, revised or simply done away with.  The worst that could happen would be some sticky residue left behind, right?  And I know where I keep my polish remover.  Truth be known, I always had a little crush on the label gun and those bumpy little letters so even if the revised label ends up not fitting, there can be as many do-overs as needed.

Where I work there is a department called the Transitional Services Unit (TSU) that helps incarcerated youth return to their communities.  I understand that it was not that many years ago that this unit did not exist and that youth who had aged out of the juvenile justice system were simply released.  Set out on the curb so to speak.  Now each departing youth has a team who works with them and on their behalf to help them navigate the numerous changes and challenges. 

This morning, I realized that I need one of these TSUs of my very own.  Now whether or not I would make good use of their offered services, I do nots know for sure.  But I cannot help but think that there might be some comfort in just knowing I had this team of humans who were looking out and ahead for me, even for a little while. 

Because where I am today is a familiar place.  Familiar but full of danger and darkness.  This place where I end up after the ground opens underneath me and I experience the free fall into depression, a cavern of great depth.  This time, I did what I used to do many years ago, I pretended I was not falling ~ for a while.  That is until either the invisible tether securing me to the landscape of life, separated or the growing velocity of the plunge forced me to admit I was in this place, once again. 

I must snap out of my funk.  Create toe and finger holds to climb, pull and grunt my way to the surface.  Pronto.  Today is my middle grandson’s 14th birth day family celebration.  I love this boy, dearly.  I am to bring the cheese bread.  Cheese bread ~ his Grammie’s cheese bread ~ is one of his most favorite foods.  To not show up, cheese bread in tow, is not acceptable.  I love this boy. 

So I must figure my way out of this quagmire of self indulgent angst once again in order to leave my home, get in Buster Blue, drive to the grocery, purchase the ingredients, return home, make the cheese spread, drive to my daughter’s home, participate in the family birth day celebration and be part of my life ~ part of my middle grandson’s life. 

Where are the TSU personnel?  Hello?  Can you hear me? 

With or without other human help, I must assist mine own self.  I have been in this place before, many times in fact.  Surely I must know the way up and out.  I will look for some markers and familiar signs pointing ahead.

One of the wonders of modern living holds sway over me still and most likely always will.  The ability to turn on the tap and have potable water appear ~ instantly appear and then with a slight flick of the wrist make it hot or return it to an icy coldness.  Now that is life in the fast lane, baby.  And we haven’t even mentioned the luxury of the flush toilet.  Oh my!

I grew up in rural areas.  My childhood was a blend spent between the Pacific coast and the Atlantic Shoreboard.  The constant being the oceans and country living.  For most of those years we lived without plumbing or electricity.  Sometimes we had electricity and no plumbing.  My adoptive parents liked to say that they had running water, they’d just send me and my sister running to fetch it.  Yep, that was a real knee slapper, their little joke.  Explains though my life long awe of running water that does not require me walking for over a quarter of a mile or more and making like a pack mule hauling back 5-gallon bright red plastic jugs or multiple re-purposed white bleach bottles of the clear liquid. 

Although I have yet to taste a sweeter more pure cup of water than what ran in one of the springs on a homestead in a faraway place, I have to say that the trade off has proved worth the exchange over time. 

So earlier today while I was letting the hot water sluice through my hair I closed my eyes and said a little thank you to the Running Water Goddess and the Universe at large, for such a gift in my daily life.  This blessing of running water.  A blessing that millions of my species do not have access to, whose very lives revolve around the seeking and retrieving of this liquid manna. 

Life is about perspective.  At least my life today seems to be and just a little shift in my focus has helped me participate in my life in this moment.  Helped me send up a prayer of gratitude to the Running Water Goddess and loosen my hold on what was feeling a lot like the running water blues.

Yes.  I just might get out of my own way…  any minute now. 

Yes.  Out of my own way, I might just move. 

There seems to be a slight problem, a little thorn in the side of the rose.  In fact, there most definitely is a blockade preventing me from moving over, which would then allow me to get out of my own way.  The problem is my exhaustion. 

Yes.  The utterly fatigued state of my being is locking me into place like molasses on a right cold night. 

Not getting a good night’s sleep for so long that I cannot recall when the last time was that I had a good night’s sleep will get me every time.  Gets me in this bone weary and slate wiped clean state of mind. 

Even with all of that, I am still holding out a little hope that I just might be able to move out of my own way.  Sometime in the future.  Hopefully sometime in the near and soon future.  A move I might make.

I think that might be what happened this morning.  I may have gotten up on the wrong side of the bed.  I have felt sort of scritchity and grumpy off and on today. 

Good thing that I get to start over again at any given moment in any given season.  My slate can be wiped clean ~ a new page turned ~ a serenity prayer uttered and sent swiftly skyward bound ~ a cleansing breath inhaled and exhaled, leaving space for peace to enter. 

Yes, choices are a darned good thing.  I hope I choose to change lanes soon.  I could make a U-turn and head the opposite direction.  I could cross over to the sunny side of the street. 

And yet I sense that I am not quite ready to make the change.  Maybe I will just let myself drift in the eddies for a while.  There is value in each state of mind, each mood that visits us.  I think I will choose to be still and let myself breathe and just be.  Be, right where I am in this moment.

Last night I ended up laughing.  A lot.  Out loud.  Hard.  Really Loud.  Knee slapping.  Reaching over to push the shoulder of my seat mate, laughter. 

 Ahh.  It felt so good!

All of this good time living sprang from my accepting a last minute invitation to attend a movie with a couple of work colleagues.  Doing so was out of character ~ doing something outside of work with co-workers, doing something on a work night and accepting an invitation the morning of the event ~ all, out of my character or might I say, my rut. 

The whole experience felt like a celebration of sorts.  Again, more than one-fold.  The first celebratory reason was the extra hour of evening light that springing the clocks forward gifted us Northern Dwellers.  Secondly, the growing realization that I am returning to life post-grad and licensure status; meaning that I actually have enough energy reserves at the end of a work day to engage with others and maybe, like last night, have a little or a lot of fun.  Cause for big old party if you ask me. 

The movie was hilarious, all about the human condition and relationships with a little projectile vomiting thrown in for a giggle or two.  I know.  You’d have to have been there…  Honestly though, the entire theatre was filled with loud raucous real laughter. 

So here I am.  Currently living the Good Life, one guffaw at a time.  It’s all good, my friend, it’s all good.

Talk with me

and share with me

those things that you hold dear. 

Let us exchange the delight in our respective lives.  Tell of the beauty I behold when I look deeply into your eyes.  Let us build on the excitement of the spark that ignites when two minds meet and mine the gold of their hearts. 

Yes.

Let us talk and talk

and we will build castles in the sky and in the sand, complete with bridges

traversing our hearts our minds our souls.

Let us go deep

into the valleys the interior landscape and the shadowed unknown.

Exploring plumbing searching

We will be amazed

over and over

again, with treasures discovered.  Long lost and sort of forgotten

until now.

Talk with me.

@junemoon 2012

November 2018
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