Thursday, November 26, 2009


I know my life is not perfect. It is filled with challenges and complications that often frustrate me.

Finding the ideal job after 14 months of unemployment/ underemployment - and getting laid-off a year later. Finding a really good man and having to break up because something keeps him from being 100% invested. Buying a condo all by myself - and having the worst neighbor in the history of the world move in below me!!!

I know my life is not perfect. I know that no body's is. But it does seem that some people are charmed. Nothing seems to go wrong. Everything goes so smoothly, you wonder if they even notice.

Like the friend who announces her pregnancy to everyone she knows the second the stick turns blue. Really? You're not worried the stick is wrong, or that the pregnancy won't stick?
When every other friend I know dealt with at least one miscarriage before they had a pregnancy they could announce - it seems like just assuming everything is going to go perfectly is akin to taking that blessing for granted.

Or the friend who has to make up problems. With her husband's support, she's a stay at home mom - but stresses that their house is too small for their children to be proud of. That the baby's room isn't 100% Pottery Barn. Precious time with your children and enough blankets to be warm, no matter the label or thread count is nothing to take for granted.

So today, I am thankful for the challenges in my life. I can't take having a job for granted, I can't take a man who loves me unconditionally for granted. My parents, in their 70s are healthy and hilarious - can't take that for granted.

I've always said that taking so long to find the right guy - I would never take my husband, or the fact that I have a husband - for granted. And I don't think I ever could. (should that day arrive!)

Doing without should make a person appreciate that which she has.
I'm grateful for the challenges in my life because they make me appreciate the sweet, simple, easy stuff all the more.

Happy Thanksgiving!

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Back to Sleep

My back - particularly my shoulders - are all kinds of jacked-up.

I've had a knot in my right shoulder for about 20 years now. It was dissolved for about a week around three years ago when my dear, dear friend Kikr treated me to her favorite massage therapist. If only I could afford to visit a 6' 7", 260lb, ex-marine-turned- massage-therapist in San Francisco once a week - perhaps I could keep that knot at bay.

I can't, so the knot is stubbornly at the base of my neck and screaming at me on a daily basis.
It screams really loudly in the mornings as I wake up laying on my back with my right shoulder next to my ear. It takes a good hour and a hot shower to ease the stiff pain.
This morning, I woke up with my right arm above my head, as if I were in a dramatic fainting scene in a silent film. Shoulder firmly planted next to my ear.

My chiropractor does not find this amusing. She enjoys my rendition of the story of course, but once she gets me on the table and starts cracking away she tells me just how out of alignment I am. Today even my ribs were out of place!! Not kidding.
If only I could afford to see her each week!

Today, she reminded me that lying on one's stomach immediately moves one's spine out of alignment. I knew it wasn't good for me, but I never before realized that it was that bad! I told her that I thought I was making progress because for the past year I've been waking up on my back. Yay me!
But the fact that I crawl into bed, ease to my right side for about 5 minutes then roll onto my stomach, cradling my pillow between my arms and my head until I fall asleep has her concerned. We don't know what time of the night or morning I move to my back.

She told me that some folks sew pockets on the front of their PJs and fill them with tennis balls to avoid rolling onto their tummy. I imagined that it would take just two attempts to roll over before those tennis balls find themselves across the room!!

How do you fall asleep? Have you ever had to break the habit of sleeping on your stomach - and how did you do it?

Friday, November 13, 2009

Mourning a Friendship

Distance can take a toll on some friendships. In some friendships, I'm the one who moved. I live 10 hours away from some of my closest friends. Others are movers too - and I live half a continent away from each of them - and oddly, they keep in contact the best.

The opportunities to see everyone who has scattered all over the country are rare, so we stay in contact by phone and email. Prior to all these social network advances - it was always mystifying when we found ourselves on the same sofa after years passed - yet it felt as though time hadn't passed at all. Such a beautiful quality of friendship. There are no gaps!

I truly value those friendships in which - even after not speaking for six or nine months, when you do reconnect - neither of you are bitter for the time that passed. You're just happy to connect again, knowing another year may pass before you catch up again - but the connection will always be as warm.

That's part of why I think Facebook is a bit deceiving, as it allows us to feel that we are connected by daily contact when really, we're just sort of eavesdropping. Real connections take effort.

I've come to realize that over the years - some friendships stand the test of time. Other friends are in our lives just for seasons. There is a reason God brings us together. It's not always for
a lifetime, but it always enriches your life. People leave their mark.

Some friends have drifted away. Sometimes it hurts. Other times, years pass before you even realize that someone is no longer in your life. They just sort of fade out - and that's okay.

Twice in my life, friendships have ended because it was the other person's choice and not mine. I had every intention of knowing these women into our old age - but for some reason they are done with me.

Right now I am struggling with the difference between a mutual fade - and being dumped. The difference is, months can pass and when I reach out to reconnect, my efforts are ignored. I have found that I have made three or four attempts in the past year - and received no response. Efforts begin to feel like pleas... and still nothing. It's the lack or response that tears at me.

It makes me wonder. Have I done wrong? Was I hurtful? Are they just preoccupied with their husband and children and all the blessings that we prayed for one another to have? Did I offend?

Or worse.

When someone you love becomes someone you don't know - it can be because of something very painful in their lives that they are not ready or willing to share. Marriage trouble, sick children, dying parents. As their friend you don't want them to struggle. You want to give assistance. You want to be Christ to them.

But that may not even be what is happening. This person is done with me and doesn't feel the need to give a reason.

This time I am really struggling with the rejection.
It seems when someone has shared the intimate details of your life and theirs, that they shouldn't just pull out without a word.
There is a special bitterness that I hate to admit - I poured hours of love and prayers into baby gifts that I sewed for her family. I know it sounds silly but to me that feels like an investment - and it hurts even more to be ignored.

I really want to shake this loose from my heart - but it pulls at me almost daily.

My bloggy friends - tell me - how have you come to terms with the loss of a friend?

Monday, November 02, 2009

Small Accomplishment

I ran out of drawer space ages ago.
If I could keep a job and make some money, I would buy a new dresser set but that for now, is not an option.

So last winter I cleared my tights selection out of a drawer and stored them in a canvas bin in one of my closets. The only problem being, the bin liner is affixed with Velcro - which is a certain blight to tights and hosiery!

For nearly a year, I put off the task of stuffing each pair of collants into sandwich baggies. I'm pleased to announce that I tackled that job this morning! Yay. Small accomplishment.

I did realize that inside each bag, it's hard to tell the style of the tights so I wrote and stuffed brief descriptions inside.
Black fishnet, reinforced toe. Gray opaque stripe. Brown herringbone.

Quite satisfied as I stuffed them all back into the canvas bin. Then I realized it would still be a chore to know exactly what I was dealing with without digging.

Wouldn't it be even more useful to have an inventory - so that when I think I need a certain style of tights to complete an outfit... I could check against the inventory and make sure not to purchase a repeat?

Brilliant! Thought I.

Oh - and I also made notes about damage, like "snags above the knees" so I would know not to bother pulling them on for a shorter skirt.

If I wanted to be really organized, I could add corresponding numbers to the inventory and to the slips of paper inside - so if I'm looking for a pair - I can just refer to the number.

I also considered taking pictures of each tight on my leg so that I could see the texture and style immediately.
Will think about that.

Obviously, this was done in avoidance of scrubbing my kitchen floor.
I don't even wear tights very often!!