#FWF Free Write Friday; Ponder This
Todayyou have been granted the opportunity to go anywhere, do anything,…
Today you have been granted the opportunity to go anywhere, do anything, meet anyone, travel in time…whatever you wish, it is yours. Now, there’s a catch. (Isn’t there always?) When you wake up tomorrow… you will not remember any of it.
I left my cares behind. On my back was a backpack filled with necessities. In my pockets were monies I had stashed a way for a rainy day. Dressed in jeans for hiking and good boots, my black-felted cowgirl hat, and a cotton blouse I was going nowhere.
Al was in the care at the Hospice house and Rhino was being fed by the neighbor. I had two weeks that Al could be safely out of my sight and I decided I was going to take advantage of every moment I could.
The skies were endless and my dreams rode the horizons. Fresh air filling my nostrils, the blue in my eyes straining to see all life had in front of me. My lungs filling with new life. I was free, yes totally free.
I had only walked about a mile when a Fairy Princess I had once dreamed about as a child appeared. She waved her beautiful, sparkling wand and presented me with a fine blue feather. She nodded towards it smiling and with her eyes told me to sit upon the carrier named Blue.
Not questioning anything I did as she prompted. The delicacy was strong enough to hold me and all that I carried. When I looked back to thank her she was gone. I smiled and within seconds my new seat lifted me above the tallest green trees. I was floating over my home I had just left.
I did not need a guide because the yearnings I carried in my heart were transferred into my golden carriage. We drifted slowly higher and I saw my parents home. Tears started to fall and as if magic the feather handed me a blue handkerchief. The edges were laced in pale blue. The core of it in the color of virgin white.
I wiped my tears and we darted higher and as we traveled it seemed like only minutes but I knew it had been much longer. For the next city I saw was one that I had lived in many years ago in Germany. Oh what beauty. Blue took me over the house that I had once lived in as a newlywed. Beautiful smiles crossed my face as I remembered all the special moments we had shared.
I photographed every detail perfectly in my mind as we hovered over the city. It was exhilarating. No one could interrupt me. I was free to react in any way that felt good. No judging, no tears, pure splendor is what I felt at this moment. My heart was higher than the tallest mountains.
We left there and soon I found myself in the front yard of my daughter’s home. I started crying and no handkerchief could control these happy and joyful tears. I miss my daughter very much. She doesn’t live near me any longer but my mind thinks of her often. Oh how I miss her, and now here I am.
Blue lowered me to the ground and I could see my daughter peering through the front window. She saw me walking up to her front door and she ran out to greet me. We hugged each other like we had never hugged. She roughed up my hair and I tousled hers. Arm in arm we walked into her home. Neither of us shut up for one second. We talked until I was signaled it was time to move on. We cried for the parting of each other but promised to not wait so long to see each other the next time.
I sat back on my familiar Blue and off we went into the skies once again. We went higher and higher. I wasn’t afraid but I was questioning in my mind where we were going. At long last I was placed in front of two golden doors. I wasn’t allowed in and this time Blue didn’t disappear.
There was a fine mist that made me keep blinking but when my eyes adjusted there on the outside of the golden gates stood my entire family. Oh Mom, oh Dad, how I have missed you. Running into their arms. Once again feeling the sureness that I was so familiar with. Seeing my Dad’s smile and Mom’s beautiful face almost made me faint.
But I dare not or I would miss each precious moment. Behind my parents were other family members. Aunts, Uncles, cousins. Everyone was there and for a brief moment I remembered love. Love for people, family and a safe haven where I knew I belonged.
Blue motioned for me that it was time to go. I clung to my parents not wanting to ever let go, but I had to. This was not for me to decide. This was my inner self expressing needs and desires that had been hidden too deeply to surface for so long.
Mom and Dad waved goodbye to me. Their eyes smiled at me and I could make out their lips saying they would see me soon.
I felt like I was ten years old again. Life was all anew. There was no sickness around me. There was no divorce nor pain. I was swinging high in a school yard swing. Kicking my feet back and forth begging to go higher. I never wanted this to stop.
Blue took me to the house I lived in when I was a child. He took me over the playground I used to play in as a child. I could see my life flowing before me. Month after month, year after year I revisited.
I wasn’t ready for the ride to stop but as I neared the familiar sights of my own home I was able to see my two sons. They were waving at me. They were mouthing words of You Go Girl. All my grandchildren were standing with them. They were screaming, hi Grandma.
They were jumping up and down as they tried so desperately to reach up to me and grab my hand. If I could have I would have reached down and picked each one up and take them with me, but alas this ride was for no one other than my inner being.
Soon I was brought down to solid ground. I was dropped off in the exact same spot as I was lifted from. I looked around to see if my fairy Princess was here but there was no one. It was just me standing in my own shadow, remembering all I had just experienced.
I had the time of my life. Everything I had ever dreamed about I had experienced. My mind was full of contentment and sweet memories. Blue had vanished and I turned towards my house and walked home. As I entered the front door I noticed nothing had changed. Everything was just how I had left it.
Today Kellie has given us permission to just write. To think about what binds us from being the free person we are meant to be.
When I think of this topic and realize my freedom to write what I choose I think of sad things and happy things.
But there is one area in my life that remains a constant shadow. No matter how many posts I write there is one taboo that I write about rarely. I have mentioned this person in the book I am writing called Parkinson’s Journey.
I think I have written about her indirectly but never addressed her in the way Kellie is asking us to do.
Maybe I can do this. It can’t really harm me, maybe it can heal me or put it to rest, at least. The topic is my half-sister, J for short.
This woman is ten years younger than me. She has been given every opportunity by our parents and still has nothing. Where I am day, she is night. Where I abide by the rules, she slides under the ruler.
Her children have suffered and I am sure somewhere deep inside her she is suffering. When we carry extra baggage for so many years and depend on that to excuse us from our own actions, it is time to let it go.
I have been healing through writing and yet she is still in the same rut doing nothing but spinning her tires. So why does she eat my guts up so bad? Maybe there is some sisterly jealousy. I have to smack myself for even partaking in this as I have nothing to be jealous of.
She has touched spots in my heart of people so dear to me. She has tried so hard to destroy me. Although she has not won, her actions still continue to haunt me today. She has caused Al to be afraid. We do not mention her name in our home.
I want to do what I wish and not be afraid of being arrested. I want to grab a hold of her and shake her good. I want to scream at her, stop what you are doing. Change your values. Look at your kids. Look at your life. How can you deny the fact that your own brother is ill? When Al placed me in a position to have to see you face to face it was one of the hardest things I have done in years. But when I told you to your face that Al wanted you to know that he is sick and he is afraid that he is going to die, you screamed and cursed at me to get out. To leave and never come back. You accused me of being a liar, trying to start problems. You said Al is not even sick. When your best friend reached out to you last week begging you to call me to let you know of Al’s health today, you told her no,, no way in hell would you make that call.
I swear, I have given you every chance to come to your senses. To see the world straight, as it really is, to not be blind sighted, but you refuse. There will come a time when you will become broken. When you wake up and see Al laying on a white pillow with his Bible in his hands. When you see that all these months I have been telling the truth, there is a part of me that will snicker and leer at you and through you as you weep for your wrong doings. But the Christian woman in me will not allow me to continue to act in this way. If you do fall down and your soul splits open your chest bone. If you are so sorry and sincere I know that I will reach down and help you up. I will help try to do what God would want me to.
But at this moment, sitting here writing this, things have not changed. Things are rotten in Denmark, as they say, and all I can do is pray that you come to your senses sooner than later. Right now I just want to smack the crap out of you, but I won’t. For my own personal sanity, I will not venture your way. I will stay my distance. If you want to know anything about your sister and brother, you will have to be the one who makes that first step. I am tired of trying.
Freedom, the feeling of no more people telling me what to do. No more parents butting in. I can make my own decisions from here on out.
I just graduated from high school. I was an adult ready to make my own way into the big world. Ready to discover what was forbidden for many years.
I had received a lot of money for graduation gifts. After counting it up I had a total of five hundred dollars. I was out of here. Out of this joint called home. Making plans with my bestie, we were on our way to have a great time.
She and I were taking two weeks and having the time of our lives. Meeting new guys was our number one goal. No more books,we were going to stay up late, sleep in late. What could possibly be better?
We didn’t have a destination. We were letting the spirit guide us. We would stop when we needed to and eat where we wanted. The money in my pocket would get us anywhere we wanted to go.
Driving down the open road, listening to the radio. Laughing our asses off. Neither she nor I heard the truck behind us blaring his horn. When we did, it was too late. Our trip was ended too short with five hundred bucks in my pocket.
The truth is, unless you let go, unless you forgive yourself, unless you forgive the situation, unless you realize that the situation is over, you cannot move forward.”
― Steve Maraboli, Life, the Truth, and Being Free
I have known for many years that I love to help others. I can sense even through gestures that a heart is hurting.
I never knew that part of this was because of what happened to my own self when I was young.
Now that I am writing a book about my brother, Al‘s Life Journey, I have discovered pieces of a puzzle that make me who I am today.
Pain is something we are able to shove way back into our mind.
Although it does manage to creep forward through words we speak and actions we take it is something that follows us throughout our lives.
Helping others and walking with my brother through Parkinson’s Disease have been my goal for so very long.
I have tried to place myself in various scenarios to have a taste of what it is like to be free and happy but I feel to uncomfortable and go back to my familiar seat.
Even the first book that I wrote and is about to be public to the world is about disabilities and how to over come them.
When I forced myself to say it out loud that I too had suffered from abuse and my brother was too I find it a miracle that Al and I are as healthy as we are today. The key to unleashing what has happened in our past is forgiveness.
I didn’t ask for anything that happened to me as a child, nor did Al or anyone else that has suffered at the minds and hands of other humans. Yet for many of us we carry the burden with us weighing us down from enjoying our lives and being the ultimate best that God wanted us to be.
How do we forgive ourselves? I am not sure as I am still sorting through the reality of my life. I do know that I have forgiven all that were involved with my young childhood. I realize that fear, and lack of knowledge can cause people to make mega mistakes.
But why do they go on with their lives and the ones who suffered the damage have been halted in their footsteps? Guilt, I believe is my own answer. It sounds so silly to think this but I blame myself.
I think things like maybe I cried too much. Maybe I was too demanding. Maybe I reminded them of someone else. Maybe I talked to much. I could go on and on but it is a waste of time. I want to become the trickles in the brook, running smoothly down stream, joining at the end of the pool. Glistening in the sunlight, and when you look into the deep reflections you see peace and feel it surrounding you as you stare back at yourself.
I want to be a part of the school of fish, swimming in one direction. I want to never be the one who tries to swim upstream while others are flowing easily into the next moment.
For me, I need to forgive myself for what has happened. I need to drop off my luggage at the local recyclable plant and never look back. I want to admit that I can not fix my brother, but I can walk with him through his journey and show him that he is loved.
When I was invited to be a guest on a radio show yesterday to speak about Parkinson’s I was more than honored and excited. I was thrilled to be able to finally give a part of myself to others. I know with what knowledge I have and my gifts God has given me I can help others to let their own baggage go also.
This is dedicated to my very special friend, Sara, who was once a WP blogger but carried the guilt of what happened to her into an early death. Still think of you often Sara, and I will always think of you with love.
It was an ordinary day. I woke early. Put my coffee pot to work. Fed my two cats and let the dog out. I brushed my teeth with my hair brush and then brushed my hair with my toothbrush. Oops, did I get that backwards? Must be old age creeping in. Well I switched them and did it proper.
I let the dog in and started heating up the skillet. Took my three fattest slices of bacon and plopped them in the pan. You know, I could do this blindfolded. I have been fixing this same meal for at least the last six years. I had to, because that old cuss I was married to decided he liked the bottle better than me. I had to give him the choice, the big make it or break it choice.
Would you believe that old buzzard chose the long-necked bottle over this divine body? Old cuss, old fart. I packed up his belongings and threw them and his ugly ass right out on the lawn. Suffer baby. See how ya like being ignored. He makes me so cotton-pickin mad. He didn’t even try to fight it. He just picked up his bags and tipped his hat to me like he was going on some sort of vacation and turned around and walked off.
Darn men, what do we women need them for anyways. They ain’t no good to us anyways except for the sex department. I think that’s about all there is that I truly miss down in my heart and body.
I could count on every Friday night after he got his paycheck he would stock the refrigerator with beer and then he would stock me up for another week. Oh well, it is what it is right?
I use my bacon grease and drop a couple of eggs. Getting them all stirred up in that grease is what makes them really yummy you know. Oh good, the coffee’s done. Looks like mud to me. Oh crap, I forgot to drop the bread down in the toaster. Well I can fix that right quick.
While it’s toasting I fill my plate with my delicious-looking grub. I pour me a steaming hot cup of that brew. Good, toaster isn’t on the blink just yet. Just popped up and now I will slather some good old butter on it. I sit down and say my usual thanks. God thanks for allowing me to still get myself up and fix my own grub. Thanks for watching over me. Now I am hungry. Making this prayer short. Thanks God, Amen.
After breakfast I go find some clean clothes to put on. Coming out into the kitchen I gaze out the window to see how chilly it is. Well what do you know, the temperatures are a rising. It is above 50 already. I don’t need no jacket today.
Good thing I wore my perky bra this morning. With no jacket to wear I wanna make sure I look my best. Who knows who I may see on my morning walk. You know, I still got what it takes.
Nice long legs. I always cover them up with pants though. I don’t want everyone seeing my old ugly varicose veins. Got me a nice sweater that fits me real good. The material is nice and soft. Any man could not resist rubbing his hands over this. See for yourself, touch it, don’t it feel nice?
It shows off my perky bosom when I wear the right push-up bra. Makes my stomach look a little smaller. I put my straw hat on and grab the leash for the dog. Come on mutt, time for our morning exercise. You can pee on any spot you see and be sure to take your dump while we are out. Don’t want you coming back and doing it in our own yard now, ya hear me?
As every day goes and this is no different we head off down the street to the city park. They got an area there all set up for dogs. I can just let him off his leash and he can go play with all the other wild heathens.
I let him go and I find me a nice warm sunny park bench to sit my behind down on. Think I will slip off my loafers and give my toes some wiggle room. What’s this? Oh crap, why didn’t I take the time to dress up those nails with some hot pink color. He’s coming my way.
He plops his butt right down beside me and says good morning man. “How ya doing this fine day?” I look at him and then down at my naked toenails. I say, “I’m a doing just fine and yourself?”
“The sunshine does make a body feel better that’s for sure. I just let my two dogs loose and I saw that they are playing with your dog now. Sort of made me a little frisky just watching them.”
“Oh really now. You mean those dogs running like wild hogs makes you frisky?”
“Well ya sorta. Takes me back in time when I was a lot younger. Lots of energy I used to have. Free and sassy. Taking out a different lady each weekend. Those were the days back then.”
“I see, and now what do you do with your spare time old man?”
“Not a whole lot, what about you?”
“Nothing much same old thing every day. Always bring my dog down here and try to get a walk in each day. You know it helps to keep a gal’s figure in fine shape.”
“Uh yeah I noticed, you got a real fine shape. I just love that sweater. Looks real comfy and soft. Mind if I touch it?”
I looked him straight in the eyes and batted my eye lashes at him and gave him my biggest smile ever. He ran his fingers up and down the arm and said, “Ya it feels real good next to my skin.”
The two became quiet then. They just sat there and watched the dogs running and playing. Soon he pulled out his pocket watch and checked the time. “Well I guess it’s time to be going. I don’t know why I really need to. There isn’t anything waiting for me at home. My wife died a couple of years back. Just hate that empty feeling when I walk through that front door.”
“I know what you mean. Same thing with me. Got me two cats at home and this darn old dog. They all keep me company.”
“Would you like some more company? You can always come home with me?” he asked as he touched my sweater one more time.
What did I tell ya folks. Didn’t I tell ya? This sweater and my perky bra can take a normal routine of a day and turn it into something more. Maybe even a little sexy added in. Get my drift?
The two wink at each other as he slips his hand in hers. They go get their dogs and take off to his house for a little extra out of the ordinary day.
Time & Place:
You find yourself in an elevator. The door closes and you see only five buttons. A sign hangs above them that reads: “Find Happiness.” Each button is a different color. Red, blue, green, orange and yellow. There are no other instructions and you must push one to get the elevator to move. Which color do you choose and why? Where does it take you?
I would pick the blue one because blue is tranquil. It must surely lead me into doors of peace and joy.
I opened the door
And walked into quietness
All I could see were more doors
Long halls no hanging pictures
Dingy gray carpet with the
Palest green walls I had ever seen
Have I made a mistake
Were my instincts wrong
I want peace but not lonliness
Maybe I should leave so I
Turn back but the doors are frozen
As if bidding me farewell
Reminding me I am all alone
Sitting on the floor
With knees drawn to chest
I cry in my arms as I
Realize another error
Was thrown at me
I looked about
Realizing I could not go back
Standing hearing my own breathing
I walked the corridor as
If I am standing on clouds
All the doors looked the same
As I went down one way then another
As I stood trying to make a right choice
I see one door that has a mark
Walking closer I see that an x
Is centered as on a dart board
I place my fingers gently on the knob
And feel the heat radiating piercing my fingers
I can’t let go I have already began
No more thinking no more choices
Turning the knob in hopes
Of making little noise
I walk in and grabbing
The wall I use my hands
To guide myself down to the floor
Unstoppable tears flow freely
My body shakes uncontrollably
Warm and tender arms wrap
Themselves around me
Sucking me in to their
Love gently standing me up
And I am in awe as I
Stand there staring into
The familiar faces
Of loved ones passed on
Many a winter night we sat around the table talking. Candles throwing bouncing lights. Casting beams of light on each pair of eyes.
Everyone sitting close together around the table. Eating pop-corn and drinking kool-aid or coffee. Snow falling and blustery winds could be seen and heard outside our old wooden door. Rattles of shutters knocking on the frame of the house. This provided the perfect scenario for living memories of the past.
Pictures would be scattered on the table as we went through them as the adults would spin their tales of their past. I always looked forward to these family nights. They didn’t happen often as there was always plenty of work to be done on the farm.
Repairs were being made to the home, inside and out. Gardens being tilled and worked. Land being chopped, plowed and seeded. A creaky barn set to the west of the homestead. This is where years of horses were raised. Plows, rakes and hoes stood erect in the corners while spiders made their homes during the quiet months.
Babies were born. A large amount people had lived on this land and born their offspring. To the east and behind the house sat a family cemetery. Each family member was carefully placed here. Wedding after wedding took place in the front yard between the dogwood trees.
Today, as I huddle together with my brothers and sisters under the kitchen table. I hear the horrific words of the powerful tornado that was passing over our part of the country. We went to the neighbors because they had a bigger home than our family.
It felt like we hid here for hours. My back began to hurt as I stayed crunched in one position. We each took turns at rotating our positions but had been warned to not come out until we were instructed.
At last the order was given. We were relieved of our position. Coming out and working to stand up we went to the windows and looked outside for damages. Our bicycles were no longer standing against the framed porch. We saw large tree branches tossed around the yard. It was if they had a party of their own.
The skies were still dark but not as gray as they were earlier. Off in the far distance we could see the peeking sun. A rainbow was forming in front of our eyes. This was a sign of hope mom had always said.
We asked the adults if we could go outside and they said, “Yes but be careful”. We went out and walked around. We started looking for our bikes and did find them nestled in the tall grasses near the barn. They were a little twisted but still able to be ridden we thought.
The adults came out of the house and told us,”We are headed over to our farm now. Let’s go children”. Making the trip didn’t take very long. Everyone was walking with a quicker step as we all were anxious to see what had happened.
Once we all arrived we stood in awe. The home that had held so many memories, so many people was nowhere to be found. Only remnants remained scattered showing us proof that there was once a house.
We gathered closely together and held hands in a circle. One of the uncles started praying. Us kids stood very still trying to understand the complexities of this situation. The prayer ended the men walked off to find salvageable goods and start a burn pile for the bad pieces.
The memories are here with us. The cemetery is still in tact. Only two of the dogwood trees are missing. We are safe and healthy and with the help of our elders and our memories our new home will be built very soon.