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Supernatural Debt Cancellation
These were three words I had never heard together until yesterday. They were the promised result, a gift from the Lord. Of course, you had to call in and request your Miracle Spring Water to open the path for the Lord. (I’m sure the call center is instructed to “offer callers the opportunity to donate to the ministry.) I watched this informercial in stunned silence before I started to rant. I suddenly felt like the spokesperson for the hoodwinked, the innocent, the snookered. This was an outrage. An abomination served upon those least able to watch out for themselves under the guise of religion. God was being used.
Last Saturday, our family reenacted our own version of The Caine Mutiny. No strawberries, no ball bearings only a trip to the recycling center. That trip became the focal point of much drama.
Earlier in the day, we’d worked the fine crew of the USS Sturgeon at the reverse vending machines over in Portland. The lure of the return deposit offered in Oregon found our ship of intrepid adventurers sailing across the river driven by the promise of monetary return. Sadly, return deposit isn’t what it used to be.
Since I was asked to add a bit more to my recent short story, I’m doing so here.
The original story is found on the tabs at the top of this blog.
If Rose could live her life over again, there were many things she would do differently. Living again was not an option. Rose was surprised at how easy it was to die. Dying wasn’t hard. It was the living that had been hard.
Life slowly left her body. She no longer had the energy to keep her eyes open but she knew what was going on in the room around her. She could hear the ticking of the clock and her sons breathing punctuated by the occasional heavy sigh. She felt for her sons. This was much harder on them than it was on her.
(A January 2011 happy snap. The photo has nothing to do with the entry. It is provided here as mere “eye candy.”)
Today, in a freshman English class, the students were supposed to draft a set of rules they live by similar to the rules Sherman Alexie lists in The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-time Indian. (Alexie’s website can be found here: http://www.fallsapart.com/index) Of course, I couldn’t resist doing the assignment as well. Once a nerd, always a nerd. (Lest, you think this self depreciating, I actually celebrate my nerdyness!)
As I stood under the eaves and waited for the dog to relieve herself in the dark, cold rain, I realized something. I’ve been trying to hard. While there is no doubt that there are many areas of my life in which I could do more and try harder, I wasn’t thinking of that kind of perseverance. This trying-too-hard isn’t visible in the tangible, physical sense. This trying-too-hard is mental and done within the space between my ears. It is attitude, pure and simple, and it is my attitude that often makes me feel miserable.
Before I had time to really sit with this thought and write it out, I checked e-mails and found this quote at the end of a post over at Kindovermatter.com. JoAnn Rothman writes,
“Stop thinking about what you are meant to do and start thinking about what you want to do. That is the way to live your purpose. “
After my recent bout of “Wrestlemania” with problems that often defy solution, I’ve taken a mental vacation. While a major case of disassociation in which I assume a new identity and new life in some vague and mysterious fit of amnesia tempts me more than I can express. It simply is not that easy to lose my marbles that completely. I’ve tried. Not easy. Been there. Done that.
I spent an evening with a especially vigorous case of the “grumpies.” That word is such an understatement it’s ridiculous. Please, substitute a stronger more colorful expression and you’ll just begin to get a glimpse of the horrible harridan I channeled. I shudder with the memory of it and blush to admit that I could be so unpleasant. (My harridan self is not as bad as it feels. This, I’m sure but please indulge me just this once. I’m experimenting with humorous hyperbole.)
a scolding, vicious woman; hag; shrew.
noun Rhetoric .
1.obvious and intentional exaggeration.
2. an extravagant statement or figure of speech not intendedto be taken literally, as “to wait an eternity.”
A thank you to the folks at dictionary.com for the definitions.
After, I chased that horrible harridan’s spirit back in the closet, I focused my energies more constructively. I wrote and not my usual stream of consciousness jibber jabber, I worked on a short story. I’m still working on it. It keeps changing but the process and the work itself has been soothing and healing. I just might have to publish it here soon.
While, problems continue to compound and confound, it is possible to wrap them up in a bundle of words and sit them on a shelf for another day. The creativity of the human mind never ceases to amaze me. In my case, it provides me with many bright moments in a life that can sometimes feel overshadowed by problems.
Isn’t there a song about putting one’s troubles in an old knapsack and moving on? Maybe, I can work that into a short story soon.
After some thought I realized that I while I may be staring homelessness in the face, I am not young any more. While a “Girl’s Guide’ has some useful information and is well written but I simply am not a girl any longer. I’ve got some different issues. This is not a total disadvantage. I do have some years of experience to rely upon. Yet, for the most part, my age is a huge disadvantage for the following reasons:
This title jumped out at me as I headed for the library elevator. It followed me home. By page two I was hooked.
Brianna Karp writes a candid memoir about her life and her homelessness. It is a topic that captures my interest for obvious reasons. Not only is it a candid memoir that I can’t help but love, it also deals with a topic that looms large on the horizon.
At school, while the students were taking a test, I pulled this book out of my bag and was soon lost in reading. The teacher, a fellow reader, expressed interest in my choice of reading material. I showed her the title to which she replied,
I have an assignment. Name 5 lessons that I learned in childhood. At first, I tried to avoid digging into any uncomfortable feelings and came up with some cutesy thing about paradox and lesson pairs which I published to this blog but just deleted. I am embarrassed to stand behind those words because they weren’t very honest.
While there were positive lessons based in childhood, they don’t give me much trouble now. It’s the negative, distorted stuff that can really mess up things. So, I’m taking another shot at it. Honesty, while not always pleasant is at least honest.
I am the person behind the words printed here. I write because my heart will not allow me the option of NOT writing. It has taken me half a life time to discover this basic truth, but now that I have, writing is as natural as breathing. This is where my breath takes the form of words.