Tuesday, April 28, 2009


I feel suspended in time, as though the world outside is rushing past me in a rivertumble heading towards the future, and I am left alone in my small apartment, only occasionally looking out the window to watch. I am detached, when going to the market or interacting as little as I do with others outside now. It will be a forced thing for me, pushing myself back out into the sunshine as I try to convince myself to remain in the dark.

I know this isn't right. It doesn't help to know, really. In my mind, perhaps, but I still stay. (I will say that when I get out, it feels wonderful. Just getting out the door is at times akin to passing into another world, which I suppose it is in a way.)

It will pass. It will always pass, just like those people beneath my window. But until then I feel like I am Brer Rabbit, and my hands are fully sucked into the Tar Baby's face for trying to teach life some manners. Guess I'm not much of an Emily Post.

Monday, April 20, 2009


I haven't mentioned it yet, but my last day of work was March 16. I have been looking, though. When people say "there's nothing out there", it's not quite true; there's a lot of work open, but most of it seems to be $12.00 an hour and lower. Can I survive on that? Yes... Unemployment is giving me a whopping $8.82 an hour when you break it down. But this is just surviving.

I have done plenty of surviving in my life. There was not much money while I was growing up. Mom and Dad did the best they could, giving things up to make sure my sister and I got a good education. I appreciate it more now that I can see it from a adult standpoint. I worked my ass off in bars, supporting the boyfriend at the time... and the money really didn't go too far. There was an apartment fire one December, and it wasn't until mid-April I had a place to live again. Working for just enough to pay the rent and juggle between bills for years. Knowing how to use an orange extension cord when the electricity is shut off. Knowing how long it will take to fill the bathtub when the water needs to be heated in the microwave because the gas has been turned off until payment is made. Sleeping in the back booth at Denny's under the 405 Freeway because no buses run that late at night so I can get home, and the money to fix the car just wasn't there. (That lasted over a year.)

I've done my share of surviving, I think. And I really don't want to go back to any of that. I just won't... I can't. Those years of just holding my breath, putting blinders on my eyes like a racehorse, and forcing myself to plow through all the bad stuff, all the garbage and waste and road blocks just to get to a little brighter area, a little higher ground. That type of struggle for such a long time just wears people out.

I found the higher ground, and was happy. I'm really still here, even though instead of being safely inside the house, I am out on the rocks now which shore up the ground to help prevent a landslide. I keep looking up at the sky, biting my lip in consternation, hoping only to see puffy clouds and no rain. There have been a few showers (such as having a job offer rescinded last Friday), but I am still here... as I squat down and make a few raps on the roots of a large tree, knocking on wood.

At least I do know where I've been, if not where I am going.

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Language Art

Good thing: There seem to be plenty of words in Bulgarian that are shared by English, French, and Spanish or Italian.

Bad thing: Trying to make my brain realize "this symbol is a letter and sounds like this", because my brain wants Roman letters, not Cyrillic letters. Brain think Cyrillic letters are pretty, but should keep quiet. :)

Like: самолет

This sounds like "semoulette" (silent e) to me. It means airplane. Brain is looking at it and telling me "Well, if you are going to insist on trying to read this, it looks like 'camonet'. Like a camouflage netting. I guess that could be related to an airplane, because you would use camo nets to hide yourself from an enemy plane. But that is on the ground! And if that л character isn't an n, then why isn't it an r like it looks like it should be were you to write it in cursive?? Why aren't you back learning French???"

Brain will really blow a gasket if I start taking Chinese.

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Being Grown Up

There are times when it is a good thing to remind yourself you are an adult. Not the times when you have to, like when you need to shame yourself into paying a bit extra on some bills instead of going out and splurging on something you want. Not when you make yourself buckle down and go to work, instead of taking one of a dozen sick days you have banked, just because it is one of the most beautiful days you have seen in awhile. And not when you go with the more conservative outfit because you will need to wear it to work, even though you know deep down you look a hella lot better in the really cute top and skirt.

Specifically, I am talking about those of us (okay, ME) who for years never really drank anything at all unless it was out at a club. For me, I haven't been out in ages, and when I was, it would be with the "you need to stay sober because you are driving" Sword of the CHP hanging over my head. For the last five or six nights I have indulged in wine after dinner. Well, and a bit during the day as well, but nothing to affect me much then. I've finished a bottle of Zinfandel, and have started on a bottle of Pinot Noir this evening, with another bottle of Merlot waiting to see if I get bored.

I feel good. I feel wonderfully relaxed and smiling. And what's more, I feel like my own person right now... like the person who puts blue and coral together even though the saleslady stares at me in horror at the thought --- and gets away with it. I feel like the woman who just got a smashing new job, and learned it was actually she who impressed the committee, and that they were indeed impressed. (Oh, wait... that really did just happen!) I feel beautiful and carefree and just like I thought I would as an adult when I was still a child.

Maybe it is that part of me that will always be a child blossoming through once again, breaking through the hard, cold sod of "acceptable adulthood" which always felt more like dirt on my coffin than anything else.

I look at the half-filled glass of crimson-ruby-carnelian and I smile, because I feel good.

All of us should.
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