snowflakes, snow days and winter is coming

Somedays can be so hard…like today. Chronic pain, persistent anger that simmers at a low boil and long awaited and prayed-for winter storms take their toll…and today it was just that.

Expressing frustrations socially can help except in this time of political incorrectness; which is basically code for a hall pass for bullying anyone who doesn’t agree with you. Still today was a day where I spoke my mind, because I have a mind dammit and as long as it is my social space and the First Amendment remains, I’m going to express myself. It feels good. It’s even better to bask in the warmth of the like-minded in my own circle. In church we used to refer to it as encouragement. Of course, not everyone I know thinks like me. That’s okay. Most can just agree to disagree because it’s the mature thing to do. Others just walk away, mute, unfollow, scroll past or just ignore – equally mature. I respect these choices. I honor them. I give thanks for each and everyone in my circles who do this. You all are amazing! Mad love and respect for you all because we regularly exchange ideas and challenge one another.

It’s all fine until that one person you know stops by to troll. YES, troll! We all know that one person…or two or maybe more. The ones who have nothing to say when you get that promotion at work, or your kid does something great, or when you wreck your car, or when you are lonely or afraid. But express an opinion that differs from theirs and THEY ARE THERE!

Hey there trolls. How the hell are you? Let’s talk. Engage. Trade ideas. Brag about our kids and grandkids.

Trolls respond as trolls do with shrill screeching, yelling and name-calling.

I’m a snowflake?

Okay fine, I am a snowflake.

You think that will hurt me? Oh bitch please. I have been called much worse…in fact one of you actually was one of those who called me much worse back in the day. I forgave you then. You were just a punky kid then. Today you are an adult, an adult armed with the idea that this Republican administration gives you a pass to insult and name call anyone who does not agree with your opinions, your beliefs, your politics or the Administration that you voted for. Now who is the snowflake, really?

But go ahead, if it makes you feel better about yourself, your opinions, your politics, call me a snowflake.

I’m a snowflake…one tiny snowflake alone, so delicate, so fragile, so ethereal. No wonder you feel so brave with your trolling. And yet, let a billion of them come together through the majestic force of nature, they can screw up a whole city…highways, airports, businesses and schools.

Winter is coming my friends.

So is a snow day.

Get ready.

surviving with deep roots

Storms make the oak grow deeper roots.

~ George Herbert

As a survivor I know why I have survived and why I thrive. It’s my roots. So many storms weathered through. Too many, much too many when I was at my most vulnerable and defenseless as a child. The fact that I am a alive it’s a miracle!

Yeah, I still sometimes quote Hamilton with no apology whatsoever!

It’s true though. How did I manage to survive and thrive when others have not?

That is not for me to figure out.

No.

Instead I will continue to survive and thrive. I will because I am stubborn. I am loved. I also continue on because I know when I must fight and when I must retreat. I don’t retreat because I am letting you who attack me win. I retreat because I am working on me which means that I win. I win because I know for a fact you (who belligerently raged at me trying to rip open wide horribly scarred wounds in reminding me what a useless, worthless shitbag fuck I am) are apoplectic right now in that I walked away from your very public meltdown directed at me. And while you raged on like a storm, I retreated into words…words that heal, that strengthen and remind me how much stronger and better I am than you. Three thousand-six hundred-fifty eight words, words filed away for now. Filed away with your words that I have boxed up for no other reason than I can. Perhaps someday you might read those words, all directed at you. Perhaps not. It doesn’t matter either way. In all these words I have strength and power in me and over anything and everything you have and continue to try to throw my way.

My roots are deep and I am stronger because of and in spite of you.

triggers

Continuing with our at play in our own backyard Fall Break Daniel I spent the day in San Francisco. We were considering exploring the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art or perhaps the Contemporary Jewish Museum along with a bit of shopping at the new Lego Store but Yom Kippur and Wednesday changed the plans a little. No big deal. San Francisco is a big place with so much to see. Taking Abby’s and her roommate’s advice, we decided to explore Ripley’s Believe It Or Not Odditorium complete with all the kitschy oddities including lasers, lights and mirrors that come with trigger warnings for those with certain physical health conditions.

For us, it triggered perhaps a little vertigo at first but we got through it dancing and dabbing along the way.

Daniel dabbing and laughing because Mom dabbing.

Making our way through the mazes, we were cocooned for but a couple hours from so much going on in the world and it was a good thing.

Soon enough, back out into the light of day, there was the news of the World, the Nation, the Election to contend with. Twenty six more days…or is it perhaps forty six more days?  Regardless, those of us struggling to some degree or another just have to hang in there in the best way for us because the struggle is getting too real right now. Like so many, I’m taking care of me in the best way that I can right now which might include a little writing, a little venting on my ever-patient darling husband and a lot of muting, unfriending and blocking of especially those who are directly responsible for so much of the anxiety and post-traumatic stress that is what I live with.

Perhaps we are connected by family and love but to be brutally honest with you, who blew up my phone in early hours of this morning detailing just how worthless and fucked I am with my higher than thou shit as you describe it in your hate-filled meandering stream of consciousness that kept me awake through the night overwhelmed with anxiety, restlessness and palpitations, I don’t want or need that brand of crazy love in my life. Yes, I know, it’s all in my head just as it has been there for literally decades as I have tried to process terror, fear and pain that no person ever deserves to live through…terror, fear and pain that you were a party to. It is indeed all in my head. But thankfully, in the light of day, I can calm the anxiety and panic and I can block you out…at least for now…and I will because what you tell me is love for me is nothing but. It never was and it never will be.

I know it’s a campaign, but this isn’t about politics. It’s about basic human decency. It’s about right and wrong.  And we simply cannot endure this, or expose our children to this any longer — not for another minute, and let alone for four years. Now is the time for all of us to stand up and say enough is enough. This has got to stop right now.

Because consider this: If all of this is painful to us as grown women, what do you think this is doing to our children? What message are our little girls hearing about who they should look like, how they should act? What lessons are they learning about their value as professionals, as human beings, about their dreams and aspirations? And how is this affecting men and boys in this country? Because I can tell you that the men in my life do not talk about women like this. And I know that my family is not unusual.

~ Michelle Obama, October 13, 2016

possibly the end

Years ago during what was maybe an El Pequeño Niño, I gave birth on a windy, rainy, blustery evening. Having as many kids as I do the odds had to be in my favor at least once that this would happen. And because it was the days of drive-thru deliveries, baby Abigael and I found ourselves coming home scarcely 24 hours after we met face to face for the first time…on another dark and stormy night. My darling husband easily stepped over the giant 3 foot puddle that he parked my new minivan in front of to get our new baby safely buckled in for her first ride. Naturally, I stepped right into the middle of that puddle of cold, brackish rainwater with my fuzzy socks and Birkenstocks because I had just pushed a 7 pound baby out of my vagina just 24 hours before and I was still bruised and swollen enough to not be as flexible as my darling husband imagined that I must be because

weren’t you doing all kinds of crazy downward doggie-warrior kind of yoga-y stretches right before we went to the hospital yesterday morning?

Because I was in labor, BACK LABOR and I might have hurt you were it not for that distraction!

Oh. So I guess puddle jumping is hard for you right now.

Just a little.

Maybe rain boots would have been better than Birkenstocks then.

Maybe.

Somedays he’s lucky that I love him so. That day was one of those days.

Looks like we are having a proper winter finally here in our neck of the woods. Yes, Jonas had his way with the Eastern part of the United States which many have yet to dig out from. I’ve seen all the Facebook posts. Hang in there y’all. I grew up in Western Pennsylvania and I promise you that I had experienced more than my fair share of epic snow storms of the century to dig out from whether or not the snow ploughs came by to clear the main road and block our street and driveway…and of course school was not cancelled because as long as the school superintendent can get out of his driveway it’s all good. Still I am thankful for winds and the rains and the snow piling up in the Sierra because we need all the precipitation, all of it.

So while the rains came down, down, down in and all over Northern Cali this past week I set about to be prepared because El Niño finally is here!

This just might bring on the end of El Niño.

God I hope not because I want nothing more than to jump in some puddles while wearing these sweet boots.

Peeking ahead at the extended forecast I just might get my wish.

wearing my words

Does a grown-assed woman really need daily affirmations?

Well, yeah.

Recent conversation with a family member reminded me of that especially when he insisted on calling me by the nickname that was, of course, a family term of endearment. Every time he called me c___ w____, I was reminded how the playground taunt brought home and shared at the dinner table became the family pet name for me because it’s love, Laura, nothing but love…except it wasn’t. At least for me it wasn’t. It hurt. It hurt a lot then…and (surprisingly because I am so far removed from that toxic swill most days) now. What can I say? I was emo when emo wasn’t cool which was probably why that endearment stuck and still tries to stick 45 years later.

Perhaps it isn’t so cool anymore for me to be emo…a middle aged woman like me.

Does a grown-assed woman, like me, really need to be reminded almost every day of her own personal truths?

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Sure!

My words, my personal truths look pretty amazing here on my wrist.

They’re shiny too.