The Cat Doesn’t Care

In a puddle of sun he stretches his lean quarters and curls back into a ball.  A soft breeze twitches the little hairs of his ears but his eyes remain firmly shut.  He doesn’t care – he’s a cat.  Nine lives, with an average span of 12 years, and he’s not wasting a moment worrying about the wind, his next meal or even how, given averages, he spends about 66% of his life napping.  He is a cat.

I wish I could somehow channel Monsieur’s lackadaisical approach to breathing – but I’m human.  So I am forced with scratch a life out, one of which I am always disturbingly aware of everything.  We are being pulled every moment towards our end and it seems this train only speeds up as we go.  I wish I could have an evening where I didn’t wonder what would happen if I just never woke up or I could lay down and nap like that old Tom and not think about the plethora of things I failed to get done today.

Because death is such an alarming deadline, (pardon the pun), we are constantly burdened by its urgency. Day after day we lose time.  It is devastating.  Some can cope by distraction: video games, drugs, movies, etc., but some of us cannot hope to quell that buzz of impending doom.

Buzz, buzz… I can only hope that I leave a little behind and that is enough.  I don’t want to wander about as a disappointed spirit.  I don’t want to be shocked by my end and not able to cross – somehow bound by the insistent ache to do more.  How sad would that be?

Why can’t I just be happy to be me, ending as I began – without a scorecard, a blank wonder and holding to the possibility that forever doesn’t have to be exhausting?

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My Children Will Never Know

I was once a pretty little girl with a grin.  I drew with old chalk rocks on the sidewalk and washed my art away with little cups of water.  I lived everywhere and nowhere because we moved so much.  I never kept a friend until High School.  I was a lonely child.  I read books, by the dozens and I lived more in its pages than my own.  I laid on top of an old car in San Angelo TX once and believed then, as now that I saw a UFO in that West Texas sky.  My big brother Eldred was always my hero.  I bugged him, circled him, aggravated him to no ends but it was just because I wanted to be near him.  Most of the time, he let me.  He drove an old brown Nova for a while.  It was a fast car, loud and I felt pretty cool just sitting in its seats.

I once got into a fight on a bus from Farrar TX to the elementary there in Groesbeck.  Some boy had called him a Long Haired Hippie.  He was bigger than me and I launched myself like a spider monkey at him, tears streaming because no one makes fun of my brother.  Not then, not now.

My oldest brother was a minister when I was young.  I remember going to church with him and his wife.  Mary was a great cook and always tried to bring me around.  See, I was the baby.  So everyone did adult things and I watched.  They lived in a few places but when I was a little bigger they lived in Galveston.  I can still see the neighborhood.  It wasn’t the best neighborhood but it was white with bright colors and the area smelled of sea water.  The piers had little shops on them full of sand dollars and t-shirts.  I got to feed the gulls on the ferry.  I always loved Galveston.

I loved a lot of the places we went.  Waco had Lion’s Park, Aunt Alivina and it was close to Gatesville.  My grandmother’s people were from this area.  They lie now in the dirt in the Coryell county cemetery.  It has been abandoned, left to dry out.  No one is close enough anymore for flowers but that had not always been so.  Once I ran with Rocket the dog while everyone talked near those graves.  I never gave one thought to the rattlers, now I would think of nothing else.

I wish my children knew how we all were once upon a time.  How we all played dominos, ate momma’s beans and fried potatoes, and hung out something more akin to a family.

I wish they would have met my Grapes, the best great-grandfather that ever was. He was tall and thin, so very thin.  He loved cornbread and milk and when I was 11 he wasted away – happier to be with my long gone great-grandmother warm in the Earth.

But they don’t ask.  They never ask me anything about me.  I am for them, as for most, a phantom.  I cook, I clean, I serve – but I am alone, so I write.  I envision someday, when my death takes them out of their own worlds, that they will remember this.  Perhaps they will seek out those pictures I so lovingly have cataloged, those memories that I wrote in the night – tears ebbing and flowing like the tides.  Maybe they stop then, their sorrow real now, their tears warm and they will wish that they had asked.

Finish a Novel

Outline, plan… write.  I need boundaries.  Just all over the place actually.  I think about my life and I am constantly lost in this flowing goo with no direction that somehow moves with me, giving me a false sense of security.  You know… like being in a womb.  I don’t want to be in a womb.  I want boundaries.  I want discipline.  I want to wake in the morning like Hemingway and write while the house is cold and quiet and then drink the rest of the afternoon.  Of course maybe writing would come easier if I didn’t feel so lethargic.  How do people get up in the morning?  I mean really… wake, pee, shower, feed the pets, eat, blah, blah… it’s all so draining.  Life is draining.  Is it supposed to be this hard?

I brushed off a couple of my short stories this week.  I edited them and then I sent them out for publication.

Now I need to get off my ass and finish my novel.  Why is it so hard to just put it all on paper?

Sigh.  Do or not do… there is no try.  Ahhhh Yoda, you are wise.

My happy place

A small patchouli candle lit, the soft voices of monks filling my ears… these set to right the chaos of day. 

Sometimes I lay quiet, my eyes shut lightly, allowing the gentle amber to make shadow against my lids. I breathe in deeply, feeling the day pass out of me and back towards the Earth. 

I must remind myself that nothing found in noise and fluorescents matter. It is, as it ever was, a means to an end. Paying for safety, pledging hours of lives to soulless enterprises, it is all too much. 

I breathe in again. I will not think of such things for it does nothing to change it. I am not rich nor clever enough to escape the droning of the bees. 

I will simply lay here until those Benedictines become the only sounds permeating my walls, my secret hollows. 

Here, in this quiet place I will spend ages, time elastic as I envision gardens in monasteries, wine and warm loaves. 

I have now reached my happy place. 

Guilt and Reincarnation

Reincarnation

What if I told you that guilt is an anchor?  Most of us experience some sort of guilt daily.  Small pangs in our souls – eating meat, eating too much, white lies, jealousy, etc., these things are almost unavoidable and likely not permanently damaging.

Although I don’t subscribe to most tenets of Christianity, the basic principles laid out in the Ten Commandments are a pretty universal guide on how not to be a douche.   Don’t murder people, don’t steal, etc. are all basic truths to all religions everywhere – except for maybe Satanism which we will discuss later.  Guilt in general comes from personal violation of one or more of these.  They are what keeps up us at night, scared of the police, afraid of ourselves  – resulting in a mass of mistakes that lay unsettled in the pit of our stomach and forcing themselves out in alcoholism, drug abuse and even our bad dreams.

But what else???  Aside from addictions, dreams, etc., the physical body experiences any number of side effects from guilt.  These can include, but certainly not limited to, hair loss, high blood pressure, diarrhea and/or constipation.  We think we can work through it guilt by owning up to our crimes, talking to counselors, ministers, etc.  But these individuals are not suited to discuss and counselor through what some might call Karma, the cosmic consequence.  Now I am not suggesting that you visit a Yogi or some crystal cleanser to quell your cosmic debt.  I actually don’t believe you can.  But what I do believe is that you can choose to let guilt go, by acknowledging, addressing and healing those affected as much as possible.

Although most of us will not commit the most heinous of crimes like murder or rape, it does not spare us from the eventual outcome of our lesser “sins” if you will.  If we cannot find a way to forgive ourselves and make retribution, there is a good chance that your next life will carry the stain of that guilt.  (Oh Discordia)  What if I told you that you were doomed to reenact your crimes in multiple lives until you understand that it isn’t just about the action but also the reaction that matters?

The new Mindful moment encourages you to be aware of your body, of your feelings and thoughts.  While that is all well and good, healing and helpful no doubt, thinking of only this moment can be dangerous.  We should encourage ourselves to think about the lives we have touched, the places our souls may (or may not) have been.  While I know some do not believe in Past Lives per se, the concept of effect is still a vital part of self discovery and healing.  It is not enough to say you are sorry, to make promise to go forward and sin no more, but to truly move through the guilt, we must understand the effects in a universal manner.

Example: Children of abusers will often abuse themselves or at least be unable (without much therapy) to maintain healthy relationships of their own.  This is the rippled effect, by one bad deed, all subsequent generations are changed.

If we can’t move through the steps, find a way to heal our soul and let go – we will carry it with us upon our death.  Holding on to this life too hard can mean terrible things – the creation of a restless spirit, hauntings – but it can also mean that, like a birthmark, you are doomed to carry that shame, that guilt with you when you begin anew.

As we emerge, most of us with no memory of the before,  we have the opportunity to live again, anew with the chance of making better decisions, of learning new things about the universe around us.  Bearing a mark at rebirth can shape the way in which you think, feel and react to the new life presented to you.

Example:  If you beat your wife, never recovering – never cleansing that guilt, the next life you may be forced to face yourself.  This could manifest as being born a woman who gets beaten or being forced to watch and understand what that felt like to the other person – that the guilt you felt was selfish, and the pain was never yours – but your victims.

In essence, it’s imperative to your soul that you go to your end without regret or guilt, letting go of this shell, secure in the knowledge that the universe has a plan.

But what about those whom guilt does not exist?  There are definitely individuals who possess no ability to feel guilt.  Serial Killers, sociopaths, those suffering from other forms of mental illness, are not exempt to universal law.  Real Satanists, not the “anti-Government” type who claim no real affiliation with the Dark Lord, revel in the idea that nothing is taboo if it suits them.  It is not necessarily evil by biblical sense but certainly by society’s.   I would also argue that most of our politicians and preachers subscribe to their own self-serving form of Satanism.

I must admit that these individuals puzzle me – or at least their outcome.  Is their doomed lives, without human emotion or remorse, their punishment for heinous previous lives?  Or is the universe giving them a “soft reset” because they have punished themselves life after life, unable to shed guilt – so much so that a lifetime with a fractured psyche is their only escape, finally able to shed guilt by being unable to access it entirely.

The dark side to this is that they are unable to exist in life normally, peacefully and without malice. Sadly they often unleash chaos in the world.  Ahhh but the Universe is destruction as well as creation is it not?  Binary systems, ying/yang, etc., all understand the nature of opposites.

It is in human nature to deny what we fear.  We fight to live forever.  We lock our doors and leave the lights on to stave off the dark.  Violence happens and in the darkness our fears live and thrive. When death happens it often comes as sudden, leaving our souls confused and hanging onto what we feel we have left unfinished.  We should take time out in our lives, while we still can, to be Mindful yes, but to also work through our guilt, giving ourselves permission to love ourselves again.

Whether you believe in reincarnation or not, letting go of the past allows us to focus on the future without restraint.

 

 

 

What people don’t know

I work, I go home and I play with my dog.  Sounds basic – and it is.  What I don’t say, what I wish someone would hear is that I am lonely.  My best friends are in Texas, my spouse and youngest are in Utah.  I’m here in California, living the single life.

I hate it.

I hate that I cannot make my daughter go shopping with me.  I hate that I can’t just laugh at Worldstar videos with my significant other.  When the work day stops  – it becomes all too silent.  That silence is painful, resentful and loud.

Utah was silent too, but maybe not as much.  With my spouse always working opposite me, no friends or family nearby – it was just us three and the animals. As much as I love my furry entourage, it’s not the same as having someone to share a meal, a movie, a simple walk in the park.  No one speaks to me.  It’s like I’m invisible because being alone is awkward and strange.

I keep a book now in my bag to feign indifference to the cold world around me.  Who cares right?  None of them are cool anyway.  Neither am I.  I am just sad.

Social media has created a false sense of community, of belonging.  What people don’t know is that actual human contact is so much warmer, so much more satisfying.  We are human, we are social creatures who crave contact.  I’m afraid my keyboard just doesn’t do it for me. If anything – it makes me more depressed because these snippets of pictures, gifs, etc. are all I really know of most people.  I haven’t spoken on the phone to most of them in years.  I can’t remember their laugh.  I doubt they could remember mine.

The longer I go without someone to truly talk to, the quieter I become.  I’m afraid to show how sad I am.  I am afraid I will break into pieces, begging to matter to someone.  No community, no investment – not even in myself.

 

 

Another Day

I’m a writer who doesn’t write.  I’m a dreamer who only lives in nightmares.  The days are too long, too lonely for me think.  I still write nothing.  I have no stories to profess, no insight into this darkness that has become my middle age.  I am as close to dying – as close as I ever was to my beginning.  I feel as if my life has taken a side turn, a crooked and cruel road that I cannot for the life of me turn around.

Who cares about this though?  Who cares for my inner thoughts and desires? Maybe the dog if he understands.  The world is full of the self absorbed.  And who are we anyway to force our prisons to be shared with those who cannot see their own bars?  It would be far easier to simply slip past into that dark night.  For truth is this –sooner or later- we are all forgotten.  No more people to grieve, no more tears to be shed over our graves as we fade into dust in cold hard boxes.  I cannot bear the thought of merely disappearing.  Though I cannot face the reality – this is me,  in my hidden place now silent and unheard.  Once I could hear my own voice, my own thoughts being shared among the living.  Why doesn’t anyone hear this silence?  Don’t they notice how my voice has grown to a mere whisper?  Isn’t there some sort of hum in the nothing?