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Can we just jump to January please? - 2014-11-14
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1:24 p.m. - 2011-03-24
Struggling toward the surface.

Oddly enough I'd watched a piece of 'Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf?' quite recently and wondered how someone as kind and loyal a friend as Liz Taylor was could whomp up such an utter scathing cruel bitch like Martha? Because it's not just histrionic playacting, you can feel how bitter her heart is, you see in her eyes how hate is the only thing keeping her alive and cruelty is the only thing she finds funny. Liz Taylor's Martha thrums with electric venom. I think it was Burton. He brought out the worst in her.

The reason I only watched a piece of the movie is because I simply can't take more than 10 or 15 minutes at a time. It's too punishing. Call me a coward if you like, but I don't willingly volunteer for hurt anymore. In any form. Not even in a movie. I've had enough toxicity and pain for several lifetimes and absolutely refuse to let any more in if I can help it. I've dedicated my life to completely wallowing in nice. In being comfy. In whistling past graveyards and turning my face toward the sun.

Which, of course, is why this bummed out, ticked off, self-loathing mood I can't seem to shake is irking me to no end.

I need Cher to come over and whack my face and tell me to snap out of it.

*Paula, you did a righteous Cher with your last comment. Thanks. Took it to heart and totally get what you said. You're a good, good friend.

So, let's find some uppy, shall we?

(cue: 'Jeopardy' thinking music.)

Did you know that was written by Merv Griffin's wife?

And before you scoff, think about how cool it is to have written a little tune that's been heard by millions and is instantly recognizable? I think that's pretty darn nifty. Reminds me of an interview I'd seen with Terry Jacks on a VH1 show. The interviewer was subtly ragging on him for being a one hit wonder and Terry Jacks snapped that guy's head around. Far from being shamed or regretful he'd only had one hit, Terry Jacks was delighted. Said he'd beaten some long, long odds just by having ONE hit record. How many people had done that? Thanks to the success of 'Seasons in the Sun' he'd had a good life. Comfortable financially. Welcomed by fans at nostalgia shows. Couldn't be anything but happy and grateful. He'd been lucky, so very, very lucky.

I like that. Seems like a smart and healthy attitude to have. It's much the same as what Paula reminded me of, even doing one good thing is way better than doing none. And that we never truly know how far the ripples spread. It's dead easy for me to be down on myself. To ignore the clean kitchen and focus on the still dusty foyer. To blow right past the hugs and smiles and encouraging words I've given my dear ones and only remember the times when I lost my temper or was abrupt and snappish. To tot up my failures like a sick rosary. Sad as it is, I think most of us live this way. Or worse, they become Marthas and mock, hector and sneer at everyone around them as though somehow that will put things right for themselves. Ladle out enough hate, dish enough dirt, inflict enough pain and all your own shit will be erased.

I know from previous bouts that climbing out of this pit isn't going to go as quickly or as smoothly as I'd like. It never is. But rather than make it worse by digging deeper because the long view is so dim right now, I'm going to take a leaf from the 12-Steppers.

For today…

I will be glad of my snuggly wonderful bed with its smooth sheets, fluffy comforter and squashy memory foam topper.

I will ignore the snow and see the beautiful robins with their puffed out red breasts vying for territory and a mate right outside my kitchen window.

I will floss my nearly cavity-free teeth and be happy my gums are pink and healthy.

I will put aside the heartache from the son who refuses to cut me some slack and hug the one who'll come home and hug me back and ask, "Hi Mom, how was your day?" and really mean it.

I will pet and praise my pretty little dog who is always glad to see me and gives me happy doggie kisses even though my hair is messy and I'm wearing a stained old lady bathrobe.

I will greet my husband with a kiss and a smile and will feel his arms around me and know his love for me is even bigger and stronger than those 21" biceps that squeeze me so tight.

I will send this message in a bottle adrift in the cyber sea and be grateful so many who will find and read it are my friends.


Much love, ~LA

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