Tuesday, May 17, 2016

SEEING THE WORLD FROM THE PASSENGER SIDE

This time last week, I was on a plane coming home.  I had an amazing few days and nights in Washington and Oregon.  I had asked Kim to take her camera and laptop to the ocean so that I could take pics.  I also had an awesome idea about blogging to you beautiful peeps from the ocean.  I also took my colors and coloring books.  My idea was that it would be so relaxing to gaze out my window upon the ocean and color and blog.
But, I didn't.

Instead, I just......was. 

I spent those days walking up and down the beach at 6:30 in the morning looking for floats, collecting rocks and shells, putting my feet in the sand and water, drinking kombucha, eating good food, going over bridges that would normally scare the bejesus out of me, throwing pennies into the ocean for my grandkids, watching salmon swim upstream,  seeing mountains, damns, waterfalls and sleeping.

I finally slept.

Right now I am averaging 5-6 hours of sleep a night.  One day there I slept for a total of 10 hours in one day.

The nights at the ocean,  I slept with the sliding glass doors open listening to the crashing waves and the barking of the seals on a tiny little island a stones throw from the beach.

I spent 5 good days simply being a passenger. 
I went to the Pacific for the first time a little over one month after daddy passed away.  I had already planned the trip long before his passing.  I almost did not go.  My kids, brother and Kim insisted that I leave anyway.  I did and it was the best thing that could have happened to me.  That is my safe place.  I do not have an idea why.  I don't know if it is the ocean's pull or if it is about the farthest I can get away from my real life.  It's the place where I have no responsibilities other than not falling over into the water.  That doesn't sound all that big until you know that I do not know how to swim.

I do know it is the place that I run to in order to recharge and remember who Mindy is.  

Then, I come back.  
When Camille was a tiny girl little girl, she had some problems going on visitation with her bio-father. He had a wife that put bad ideas into her head.  Camille hated going and she dreaded being away from me.   She became very attached to a Dr. Seuss book called *Are You My Mother*.  In that book, the little bird hatches and starts looking for his mom. The mom has left the nest to go and look for food.  After the baby bird's adventure, he and the mom are reunited.   I would read the book to Camille and then I would reassure her with the words *I will always come back.*.    She would always answer *You always come back.*   
Through and through, I am a Texas girl.  I love it here.  I have toyed with the idea of moving there.  Circumstances (and not my kids) make that unfeasible.  DAMN being a responsible adult!    However, there is something that calls me back to the Pacific Northwest.  Something that feeds my soul.  It props me up and sends me back into the world.  For about a year now, I thought that I would never get to put my feet into that sand again.  Then the Universe opens up and  makes the unlikely the normal.   

That last morning, I built a cairn on the beach.  I told the ocean *I always come back*.  

I can't wait to hear it answer me.

 .....don't worry, I'll catch up on the weeks I missed!

Tuesday, May 03, 2016

Hey, Have You Met My Friend......

Shelby?

You may not know Shelby but, if you and I are friends on facebook, you know that I love taking pics of her dog, Kutter.  
He loves me.  He really really does.  She claims that he does not like to dress up. ppppssshhhh  Look at that face!!   That dog is totally metrosexual and will do anything for a treat.

I have only really known Shelby for a year.  It basically started over cobbler.  My tribe grows for the oddest reasons sometimes.  

Here is some thing you need to know about Shelby.

FIRST MEMORY OF YOU : guess I would have to say the day you brought your dog's in the shop to be groomed. However I remember seeing you on your pink scooter but did not know you.


Me:  I had heard your name for years.  First through Marty because you trimmed her dogs nails.  Then through a client that you sponsored.  You *signed* her forms for her.  Now that I know you and how you write, I know that was not your signature.  lol

MY JOB: Owner of Bow Wow Boutique/groomer. Love the animals,  don't hate much about it however it's becoming harder for me. Pretty physical work.


Me:  You express anal glands.  ~gags~  You always won't let Kutter have a mohawk.  I think that is narrow minded of you.  

MY HERO: Was my dad, however Bill W. has been at the top of that list since 1989.


FAVORITE TAT :The first tat I got was a heart,feather and wing all in one. Have it on the inside of leg. FREEDOM....(now u should get a sunflower I think).


AT MT DINNER TABLE WOULD BE: that's hard to just name 5. Ann Richards, Maya Angelou, Bette Midler, Rosa Parks, and Katharine Hepburn. And I could name so many more, Cher, Mother Teresa, Audrey Hepburn, the list could go on and there are some special women in my tribe that I just love sitting down with.


Me:  I call shotgun with Ann Richards.  

WORST HABIT: oh several nicotine, I know it's a bad one. But I've had worse, lol
Things I collect: I guess it would have to be signs for my fence and chips.


Me:  Nicotine makes it sound pretty.  LOL  you dip.  I love the signs on your fence.  I also like your chips and what they mean to you.  

FAVORITE SAYING: Have a lot of them, all the recovery sayings like One Day at a Time, Let Go Let God, First Things First, ect.....


Me:  And my favorite....*when did you last get your tires rotated?*   you are very handy Shelby.  Thank goodness.

YOUR TAT: well already answered that, a sunflower because your father loved sunflowers and so do you. They are bright, happy, colorful just like you.


Me:  I like your sunflower tat.  It is totally you.  
Shelby is quirky but different from me quirky.  She doesn't like soggy food.  She eats biscuits and gravy really fast.  She eats deconstructed strawberry short cake.  She likes quiet....like in no tv or radio quiet. You will always see her with her breakfast peanuts and Copenhagen.  I don't think that she really knows many people's lives that she has touched.  I love the bits and pieces of her story that I have heard so far. She doesn't like to text but she does anyway.  She went and bought me a sports bra when I was still loopy from surgery.  She is tough and gruff at times but, underneath it all, she wants people to succeed.  She knows someone EVERY SINGLE PLACE THAT SHE GOES.  For reals. She does not eat left overs.  She doesn't really trust the internet.  She has clown pictures on her kitchen walls.  I don't make that kind of stuff up people.  She doesn't mind being around me when I am wearing my turkey hat.   She is the one that cared enough about me to get me to start working out...and has never made fun of me or my white legs.  She makes the best fried okra, potatoes and onions.  My life is better with Shelby in it.

She is taking me to the airport on Thursday.  I guess you could call her my getaway driver.




...and yet there is STILL no cobbler!

Thursday, April 28, 2016

I Thought That I Was a Good Christian.....

turns out, I just had a stick stuck up my ass.

I was raised in the Church.  My religious experiences ranges from Southern Baptist to Nazarene to Assembly of God.  

Funny story, well maybe not so funny.    We went to the First Baptist Church one Sunday and was sitting there waiting for the service to start. We had been attending that Church for several years.    A woman comes up and tells Daddy that we are sitting in *her* pew and would we please move.  She had sat in *her* pew for years and would like to sit there that Sunday. Daddy got up and told her she could certainly have her pew back and escorted us all out the door.  We never went back to the Baptist Church in Clarendon Texas again.

I have been baptized, GA'ed, anointed, taught, VBSed, placed with the singles (all HAIL...Leper Leper), listen to people talk in tongues and been slain in the spirit.  Yes siree bob I have been.  That was an experience that I was not expecting.  Kind of like taking a really refreshing nap.  I am really kind of an equal opportunity religious experience person.

Another funny story....when I started back to college, Cade was a baby.  I got him into daycare with this nice Christian family.  He worked and she stayed at home and watched several kids.  From day one, Cade cried every day that I took him.  She told me he cried all day long. On Wednesday of the following week, she told me that they had prayed about it and that Cade could not go back to stay there with them starting immediately.  I was at a loss.  They prayed about it and got an answer but I didn't?  There was another person with a day care in town, her name was Beth.  She told me that he could go there.  Funny thing is, he never ever cried.  Nanny Beth was old time Assembly of God.  She and the kids prayed over everything.  I was totally cool with that.  One day, Cade begin to pray *hummm del la tedoa humda humda  Yahweh. blakta fewa humda*  LOL Nanny Beth had been praying in tongues all that time and I was not aware of it.

Wow....did I chase a rabbit or what?

The point I was trying to make is I was raised in good churches with good people who, for the most part, were doing the very best that they could.   You go to church when the doors are open, always wear a dress and look presentable to the Lord, tithe your 10%, take kool aide and homemade cookies to VBS, support Lottie Moon Missions, listen to a male preacher with a sweet little wife that runs the missions program and use your bulletin as a bookmark.   I was raised in churches.....

WHERE EVERYONE WAS LIKE ME.

I had a picture of Jesus on my bedroom wall.  My grandmother gave it to me when I was little bitty.  It was a fair skinned, smooth brown haired, doe brown eyed Jesus.  I got the sanitized version of Jesus....edited for American audiences.  

I did what I had been taught to do.  I thought all *Christians* were supposed to be like me.  And, if you weren't then....you were wrong.  I bought into that.  I liked that package.  Since God was my co-pilot, I knew everything. That was the BUT NOW I SEE PART.  If that was true, then I did not have to do anything because I was on the winning team.  GGGGOOOOOO Jesus!  

I do not remember being given a stick when I got my Bible with my name printed in gold on the front.

Over the last few years, I have grown apart from organized religion.  It has been a long time since I have attended Church.  I miss it at times.  I miss when we used to have Sunday School that David taught because I learned something.  He made us work for it and did not spoon feed us.  He pushed us to be thinkers and doers.

Lately, I have been disgusted by some of my fellow *believers*.  I am sick and tired of all of the hatred that is going on by those that say they follow Jesus.   Why in the world would anyone want to be like us?  We pick apart silly issues and throw words around like sin and choice when the stories are not even ours to tell.  We no longer have love or compassion.  I wonder if we ever really did.  We walk around with our noses in the air because, let's face it, we think we are better than *spits* them.  With our noses up that high, we just no longer smell the stink that we are wearing.

We claim to love our God and then point fingers and sneer at our brothers and sisters.  Let me tell you this....no matter who you pray to or don't pray to...we ARE all related.  Some have a lot of crazy aunts in the attic but, we are all in this together.   None of us will get out of this alive.  

Yet, we pick pick pick at scabs.  We throw things up on facebook to show that we are *right* because, if it is on the internet then it must be true.  I believe that we have actually become more dangerous and deadly to our cause than the westboro baptist church.

We claim that we are being persecuted.  We aren't.   Persecuted is being denied equal rights.  Persecuted is being told you cannot go into the bathroom that you identify with.  Persecuted is being afraid to tell people who and what you are because of what you will be labeled.  Persecuted is walls, labels, denial, lions and tigers and bears...oh my.

We, as Christians, do not even begin to know the meaning of  persecution unless it is us doing it to other people.

We are afraid of anything that is not the same as us.

I once was blind.  Blind because I thought anyone who did not live or think the way I did was wrong. I tore pages out of the bible and fashioned a nice little mask to wear over my eyes.  Blind.

It has taken a whole lot of people who ARE NOT LIKE ME to get that stick dislodged.  Who would have ever thought that removing a stick would have a direct result on me being able to see?  

I am one of the lucky ones.  I now have so many friends who are not like me at all.  Friends that have taught me how to not be that mindy anymore.  People that have taught me that different is GOOD.  We all have something to bring to the table.  

I once was lost....but now I am found. 
Was blind....but now....now I am finally beginning to be able to see....just a tiny bit.



Tuesday, April 19, 2016

A Spoon Full Of Sugar Helps....

......the medicine go down.  Today I am thankful for.....

  1. Rain--Even though a lot of Texas has gotten more rain that they even care about, we are close to falling back into drought conditions.  We get down right excited when we get rain here.
  2. A physician's assistant that cares about me and takes good care of me.
  3. People who texted or messaged me to tell me I could run away to their home.  Even people I have never ever met.
  4. Amaaazing hand creme from Posh that smells like mint and honey.
  5. Found pennies
  6. Money from stuff sold on facebook as a result of de-cluttering
  7. A full coin jar.....more money to go into my travel fund.
  8. Plane tickets...just a little over 2 weeks.  #1, yes I bought a round trip ticket.  #2, Marty made me get tickets where I did not have to change planes a lot because I am so crazy off right  now.
  9. Photos that I finally printed out...hello camp from over 2 years ago!
  10. More space.  I really am trying to get rid of things and not bring other things back in.
  11. New thyroid meds
  12. Being Momdy.  5 years ago today, the boy's cases were moved to the adoption unit.  Every once in a while, I think about the bio mom.  I don't know who or where she is.  I don't know if she hurt when the termination happened.  I do know that these 3 boys are loved deeply and are a perfect fit.  No matter what, I am grateful that they came to us through her.  I hope that her life is better.    
  13. Working out with women who make me laugh and do not make fun of me.
  14. Tribe Love
  15. Clean panties
  16. Portuguese Water Buffalos...lol.....just seeing if you are still reading.
  17. Porch lights
  18. Handy dandy friends who can change tires and paint a wall.
  19. Samples
  20. Friends who have loved me and looked out for me while I have been so off.  They have been gentle and kind with me.  Kind of like those bumpers that little kids get to use when they bowl.  You know, they bowling ball bumps them but not too hard and the bumper  keeps the ball from falling into the gutter.  It keeps rolling on down the lane.   OMG That metaphor fit better than I ever dreamed it would at the start of #20.  People have honestly kept me moving forward and not giving up and laying down.  Let me tell you, there are days that I would have put on my pajamas and gladly of laid in the gutter.  Thank you.
  21. You...always you.
Your turn!  Tell me 2 or 3 things that you are thankful for in comments. 







.....is feeling a tiny bit better.  Still pretty crazy but better. 


Thursday, April 07, 2016

The Princess Hates Waiting In Line

I am tired.  Tired and staticky. Tired, staticky and cannot focus to save my life.  I am having a hard time connecting the dots.  It is like the world is slowly going by and I am in the back of one of those old station wagons  and I am going the opposite direction.  

If the world rotates at a rate of 60 mph and you leave your garage seated in the back of a 1949 station wagon traveling east at 3 mph.....how long would it take before your mom would blindly wave her arm around behind her seat trying to whack someone with a wooden spoon?

I do not like it not one little bit.

I am at a loss at how to get out of this funk.  I don't know if it is the medications, menopause or lack of sleep.

Oh my goodness....I miss sleep. I am not sure why we broke up.  I stalk it like one of those jilted ex's on facebook but cannot never quiet catch it alone.

More than anything...and I do mean anything, I am so danged tired of myself and using the word tired.  

I go to bed early. I create.  I take a sleeping pill. I work on my list.  I don't take a sleeping pill.  I keep good people around me.  I work out. I take a nice soaking hot bath. I say my positive self statements.  I walk.  I am eating better than I ever have.  I got a pedicure. I cook.  I do a daily gratitude list. I got a massage. Nothing changes.  Nothing works.

When I look at myself from the outside, I see a thousand fractured pieces and I don't know how to glue them back together.  Or what place they belong in.

The princess is disenchanted.  

Today is a difficult day.  There is nothing in the world wrong but, I want to cry.  It is a beautiful day outside.  Everyone at work is happy.  My life is good.  My bills are paid.  I have a trip coming up that I am looking forward to.  But I could cry at the drop of a hat.  My rational brain knows that this is just a phase. I will ride the waves until I am on the other side.  My irrational brain tells me to run but does not give me directions as to where.   

Rational *But WHERE? Just where would you run to?  Think about it.  Calm down.  Just slow down a minute.  Breathe. You've got this....breathe.*
Irrational *Who the F cares....RUN RUN I tell you.  We have to go now!*
Rational *Breathe sweetie....it is all going to be alright.*
Irrational  *Alright?  ALRIGHT??  I am breathing.  Look at me BREATHE!  RRRRUUUNNNNNNN*
Rational *Well, at least pack your toothbrush.*
Irrational ~rolling her eyes~ * Two words.  Debit Card.  DEBIT CARD.  There is a damned Wal Mart or a CVS on EVERY street corner!*
Rational *I honestly can't argue with that...let me get my phone charger.  Mind if we stop at The Dollar Tree for snacks? *

When my rational begins to agree with my irrational, I know that there is trouble ahead.  

I also know that I could go to bed tonight and sleep like a baby all night long and tomorrow be fabulous.  It would be like the last few weeks of dark have never happened.  There is no rhyme or reason.  I also know that I am not unique....everyone has times like this if they will just admit it.  They pluck at the gray clouds, just like me, trying like hell to find the silver lining.

I am alright.  I promise.   I know I am perfectly safe and that all of my feelings are just that....feelings.  They are not real.  I try not to make any real decisions when I am like this.  I try just to be kind and take care of myself.  I am just trying to get it out and leave it here.  Sometimes that helps.

What do you do?  What do you do when you are at that place?  What paddles do you use to get your leaky canoe to the other side?

....will send you a postcard from where ever she runs to.  Wal Mart has lots of post cards.  ;) 





Monday, March 28, 2016

Rachel...The First Woman Cade Fell In Love With....

A few weeks ago, I asked for blog topics.   Someone said "I would like to know more about the people in your life that you love.  Tell us about some of your friends.  Why are they important to you?  Why do they love you?  You seem to attract fascinating, interesting people-so write about them."

I do have an amazing,  eclectic, normal,  bizarre group of friends whom I love very much.  I carry pieces of each of them with me. Some I have met....some I have not.   It seemed only natural to begin with one that you are probably already familiar with.   Rachel was my first friend in Plainview.  She was the one that taught me how to set up an email account.  Because of her, I blogged.   I got one comment.....yep, it was Rach.  She blogs HERE.  She is the one that told me to get a debit card and to pay my bills online.   Cade fell in love with her at the age of 3. She was tall and wore ties and he would have gone home with her in a heartbeat....but she could not of fed him. She has gone to the kid's school events and supported them even though she is allergic to small children.   Rachel taught me that it was perfectly alright and expected to think outside of the box.  She STILL gets me to think outside of the box.  She has had the biggest impact on me in developing into who I am today. (that is a good thing)  I will forever be grateful.  I have MAYBE hugged her less than 5 times in my whole life.  Despite that, she knows how I feel about her and I know how she feels about me.  She has thrown things at me.  She has seen me at my worst.    I have sat across the table from her more times than I remember.  I have traveled with her.....I have no problem slogging though a cemetery with her and she has no problems schleping  though a craft store with me.  We click.   Rachel is someone that I could live in a commune with.  Ya know, if we had our own rooms and no one was allowed to touch other people's stuff or talk before 8am and they fed us.

This, is my Rachel......


1. What is your first memory of me?   It was your hair.  Our tight little group at work knew you were there for an interview.  Somebody managed a glimpse of you.  They reported back that you had a tail.  Obviously that made you a partier.   We were all bummed.  We didn’t need that kind of a person!  You’d never fit in!  We wouldn’t like you.  And we sure hoped there were some other, more suitable candidates still to come.  Book covers never lie, right?  

Me:  OMG!  I did not know that!  The same thing happened to me when I moved to Clarendon my freshman year and was in basketball.  They all thought I was their competition.  They got over that about 3 minutes into the first practice.  

My first memory of you is me wondering around out in the big middle and you looking at me and pointing to something above my head.  The bathroom sign.  lol  You knew what I needed and we did not even have to speak.  That holds true today.


2. Tell me all about your job and why you love/hate it?   I’ve been a probation officer since the day after college graduation.  I’ve never considered a change because the job provides some of the most honest, gritty, and hilarious experiences anyone could possibly ask for.  I can’t imagine anything that could be better for someone who just plain loves humanity in all its permutations.  Now I’m the boss of my own self, which is great.  I have tons of freedom.  But the administrative side of things is not my strong suit.  I’m much more interested in the people, rather than the paperwork.  

Me:  Remember when everything was done by hand?!?!?   I did not even have a computer on my desk when I started.  It's a shame that the general public will not know about chlamydia of the knee, peace treaties and why women cannot have convulsions.  
  
3. Who is your hero and why?   Ohhhhhhh, hell.  So hard to choose.  Lots and lots of heroes.  Most of them fictional, I think.  Today my hero is Dorothy Parker.  I love her attitude and her smart mouth.  And I cannot tell you how badly I’m craving time spent at an Algonquin round table of my own, full of my mouthy friends. And of COURSE you are right there next to me at the table.  Because we are effin’ AWESOME together at that sort of thing.  

Me:  I had to look up Algonquin.  My mouthiness I partially attribute to you.  We are great together like that.  Like Martin and Lewis or Bert and Ernie.  That is why I wanted us to do the amazing race together.  Seriously, you and I are good at knowing what our own strengths and the other's strengths are and acting accordingly.  That is why I wanted us to try out for the amazing race together.  That and I knew you would not trade me off to another team or leave me behind.  But, you had to stay home and take care of cancer boy.  aahheemm  look who is still here.


4. Which is your favorite tat and why?  I don’t have a particular favorite, which is why I don’t have one.  But I love classic tattoo art.  I toyed with the idea of becoming a tattoo artist.  But then I realized that I’d have to, you know, touch people.  Eew.  No.  But I still love the art!

Me:   I would love to be a massage therapist but I would be really really picky. I could not massage someone that was really hairy.    I would also be great at cleaning people's homes and organizing but I would not clean their bathrooms.  Not sure how that applies to this question but I felt sure that you wanted to know those things.   


5. If you could host a dinner party and invite 5 women, (alive, dead or fictional) who would you invite?   I have good friends in different compartments of my life.  I’d like to gather them all together around a table so you could all get to see and hear each other.  You’re all so different, and you bring out different things in me.  But you’ve all got a lot in common.  I’d like the planets to align, so to speak, and see how everyone would fit with each other.  

Me:  That would be so cool.  You have a wide variety of friends from all walks.  I love that about you.  It is not an outside packaging thing for you.  You add to everyone you let close.  


6. Your worst habit?  Not finishing stu...
Me:  ~snorts~  so you....


7. What do you collect?  Gargoyles.  Skulls.  Maybe yard art.  
Me:  Maybe yard art?  How does one maybe collect yard art?   One of the big things that I miss about you is your office.  Your people had to be terrified/perplexed/clueless about your office.  I loved it.  


8. Favorite saying and why?  I/you/they took a button and sewed a vest to it.  I learned that saying from Perry Mason books way back when.  It pretty much describes what I do.  I love to pick up a tidbit, a small detail and weave an entire story around it.  So much fun.  
Me:  I had never heard that saying before you.  I love it but never ever remember to use it.  lol


9. Scrambled eggs or over easy? What do you eat on them?  Both.  Usually scrambled because it’s harder to get good over easy eggs.  I like my over-easies to have those crispy buttery edges that are juuuuuust starting to brown.  I don’t eat eggs without some sort of red paint on them, preferably good salsa.  Barring that, tabasco.  In a pinch, ketchup.  I don’t like eggs by themselves.  They need meat and red paint.  Then I love them.

Me:  LOL red paint.  I am a ketchup girl.  

10. If you could put a tat on me, what would it be and why? Where?   A single star, placed where you could easily see it.  To remind you that you are enough all by yourself.  You are bright and shiny and perfect all on your own.  Combined with other stars, you can light up the universe.  But with or without them, you will shine on and no amount of darkness could smother your light.


Me:  Well hell, my eyes got sweaty.  I love that so much.  I love that and it just might be my next tattoo. Maybe on my right wrist.   I hate you so much.  ;) 







All pics courtesy of Rachel herself.   Which is a nice was to say I stole them.  

Sunday, March 27, 2016

Easter 2016

Holidays have been less than joyful since Daddy passed away.  We all get together and have a good time but, it is different.  Mom has the hardest time.  She has the hardest time all the time.  She had obsessed about this get together.   There was new people coming to this Easter and it sent her panic into over drive.  Especially when she was told that Andy, Camille's new *friend* would be putting a light in for her.  Mom needs more light to see better and Andy is an electrician.  WIN WIN Camille and I thought.

*Andy could be sent by Satan* is what my mom thought and voiced.

~sighs~

So, we descended upon Clarendon.  Old and new.  Three boys that we did not even know several years ago.  A princess that we thought we would never see again.   A bonus daughter. New people that have come into our lives within the last year.  

And it was good.....so very good.  We ate.  We laughed.  We hid eggs.  The kids hunted eggs. We talked.  The light got hung. My mom asked me to take off the ears.  I didn't.  We had a tea party.  We colored.   We moved forward just a little bit.  


I talked to mom this morning.  She loved yesterday.  She told me that it was a really good day for her and one of the first holidays that she was not miserable wishing that my daddy was there.  Not that she did not miss him....but the house was full and she allowed herself  to be in the moment and enjoy herself.   Yesterday at Easter was the first time that, instead of missing him....she felt him there with us.  Me too.

Spring.  Easter.  New hopes, love and beginnings.  We have come a long way.   I am looking forward to so much more.  




........the bunny did not leave me one danged egg.