If you love something, don’t set it free

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For several years, I made novelty birthday cakes as well as wedding cakes.  It was something I was really passionate about and I loved the creative outlet that I was afforded when decorating each individual cake.  My outer world seemed to disappear when I was in the kitchen and life became uncomplicated and beautiful.

With the increased responsibility in my day job and the hectic pace of my life, something had to give.  Unfortunately the cakes were put on the shelf (metaphorically speaking) and I didn’t know how much I missed them until today.  A friend of mine is getting married on Saturday and I agreed to make her small and simple, but elegant wedding cake.  The smell in my house tonight is bringing me back to all of those nights of baking and making me wonder why I made the decision to give up something that I loved so much.

The saying “if you love something, set it free” came to mind and it started the wheels in motion for this post.  I have been pondering why I set this love free.   Love isn’t something that is just given to us.  It requires nurturing and a great deal of effort.  If we just set it free and rest on the hope that it will come back, we give up our sense of responsibility to that passion.

This love didn’t just return to me on a whim.  I chased it into the night and romanced it back into my kitchen.  I coddled it, caressed it and with that effort on my part, together we found the path that we once travelled.  It was comforting, like slipping a foot into a well moulded slipper that only fits your foot.

I didn’t make the mistake of loving something, I made the egregious error of setting it free.  It would never have returned had I not made the effort to get it back and keep it in my life.

Don’t just give up on the things you love.  Don’t set it free and hope it will come back to you.  Unless you are willing to put unequivocal effort into keeping that love nourished, it will find another kitchen in which to grow and flourish.

By the pricking of my thumbs – something wicked this way comes

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Intuition is a perplexing thing.  Our body is a natural conduit for energy, and that energy has an odd, but effective way of giving us warning signs that danger is lurking.   The witches in Macbeth described the feeling as a pricking in their thumbs.  We may feel it when the hair on the nape of our neck stands at attention, but the premise is the same.  Our gut is sending a message that our brain cannot ignore.

Usually we can’t understand the visceral reaction to a certain circumstance, but we have to put our faith in its validity.  That little voice gets very vocal when it feels imminent danger, and usually that voice is spot on.  Everyone is born with the gift of intuition, but it is how we heed the wisdom of that instinctive feeling that is of great benefit to us.

That moment when something wicked does actually come may be completely averted by listening to those nagging doubts in our mind.  Those doubts exist for a reason.  There is a power far beyond some people’s belief or comfort level that aids in our self-preservation.   That terse glance over our shoulder, the quickening of our step while walking in the dark – both may feel cryptic and unnecessary, but listening to those pestering whispers may help us avoid an uncomfortable situation.

That intuition may also have altruistic applications.  The stirring in our senses does not always represent peril, but could also put us on the path to good fortune.  The Yin and Yang of those intuitive forces can also help us make decisions for our benefit and not just our physical longevity.   Our lives are based on choices and that same power of perception can guide us through those choices and help us discover the best path for our journey.

My thumbs do not become prickly, nor does the hair stand up on my neck.  I get goosebumps, and that chicken skin that was once my flesh has never steered me wrong.  Hopefully when something wicked this way really does come, I will be the human version of Foghorn Leghorn, plucked and covered with a roadmap of goose-flesh to guide me to safety.

What I want to be when I grow up

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I was talking to some friends today about my blog.  They have been very supportive and encouraging, which really inspires me to continue this journey of my recently rekindled love for language.  I have always had a passion for words, but now my passion has gone from glowing embers to a roaring blaze.   One of the girls was unaware of my blog, and when she asked if I was a writer, I responded without hesitation – yes.

That was the first time in my life I have felt worthy of being able to call myself a writer and I felt an overwhelming sense of joy.  I have always responded to similar questions with varied responses.  “Oh, I write poetry” or “I’ve written a couple of short stories”, but never have I felt enough ownership of my talent to be able to claim that I am a writer.   Today was the turning point in that constant battle in my head.  I am a writer, and I’m proud to finally be able to admit that.

After years of searching for what truly makes me happy, I finally decided what I want to be when I grow up.  Okay, so I’m 43 years old, but I still feel like I have a lot of growing to do, not only as a writer, but as a person.  But I want to write.  I feel that fire coursing through my veins more and more and the urge to string sentences together into paragraphs fraught with meaning is overwhelming.  Ideas churn in my brain during the conscious hours of my day and random dreams diffuse themselves into plot lines when my eyelids flutter open to watch the new crest of the sun greet the horizon.

My dream is quickly becoming more of a reality because I am allowing myself to believe that I can achieve the possible.  Embrace what it is that truly makes you feel complete.  If you keep your dreams alive, you can still chase them.

We accept the love we think we deserve

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I love when I have a post idea in my head when I’m drifting off to sleep and it is there, anxiously waiting to burst from my fingertips onto the page the next morning.  Here is the result of my musing and somewhat dream-filled night.

I  watched Oprah on a fairly regular basis.  I, like most women, will admit that wholeheartedly and proudly.  She would delve into a lot of topics that simply resonated with people but they were perhaps too afraid to broach the subject without some cajoling.

Oprah used to talk about the “a-ha moment”.   The moment when the outside world ceased to invade our conscious thought and the epiphany that presented itself was so overwhelming that it struck a giant chord deep within us.  I had my a-ha moment last night watching Anderson Cooper.  Members of the cast of the new movie “The Perks of being a Wallflower” were being interviewed and, at one point during the conversation, one of those cast members mentioned the line his character spoke in the film.  ‘We accept the love we think we deserve.’    That line struck me as so profound and dripping in rich meaning, that it truly made me stop everything I was doing to ponder how that sentence affected me.

For many of us, love comes with terms and conditions.  That is the  way we first experienced love and that is what we have come to accept.  But those terms and conditions, like any contract, can be revoked, altered and enhanced to change the experiences we have in our lives.  We do not need to settle for anything less than the love we crave and the love we truly deserve, not just what we have come to expect.  We are the makers of our own destiny and only we can know if we are being loved the way we truly want to be loved.

(image courtesy of Google)

Even Yoda gets it – there is no try, only do.  If I really think about it the subject line of this post, a very powerful sentence, had been hiding in the recesses of my brain for some time and I left a marriage that was not fulfilling my need to be loved the way I deserve to be loved.  I finally put myself first, for perhaps the first time in my life, and revoked that contract.   I have since rewritten my parameters on how I deserve to be loved, and nothing is going to sway that decision.  There are no exceptions to the rules.  There is no room for discussion.  And the fundamental principle is simple – love me not because you can live with me, but because you can’t live without me.  (Trite, but true)

Each of us is deserving of an all-encompassing love – one that sometimes seems to stifle us because the emotion is so overwhelming, but we could not possibly live our lives without.  It may be your spouse, your children, your friends or your family but regardless of where that feeling comes from, know that you truly deserve to be loved on your terms and not just theirs.   Don’t just accept what is offered – if you think you are worthy of more, demand more.

Look over here

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I just saw a post by diannegray  She is inviting people to play the game Look.

The idea of the game is to locate the word ‘look’ in whatever manuscript you have lying around, then post it with the surrounding paragraphs. Afterwards, invite other authors to do the same.  These paragraphs are from my first attempt at a novel – nowhere near finished yet, but I’d love some comments to see what you think.

Ethan looked at himself in the mirror for the third time.  The deep circles under his eyes and the numerous laugh lines did much to convince him that he had earned each of his 38 years.  Laugh lines he thought,  were the definition of irony.  He couldn’t remember the last time he had laughed.  Hell, he couldn’t remember the last time he had smiled.  Pulling his gaze from the mirror, Ethan glanced around his modest condominium.  The collection of antique and clay figurines certainly looked familiar, but somehow seemed vaguely out of place.  He could not put a finger on it but his trepidation increased.

Shaking off his uneasiness and the frustration of the day, he moved over to the dry sink and poured himself a glass of Robert Mondavi Cabernet Sauvignon.  He padded through the plush carpet and sank into his favorite recliner.  Although the condo was tastefully decorated, the recliner stuck out like a sore thumb.  The remainder of the chocolate-brown corduroy on the arms hung in tatters and foam spouted from the gaping holes, but Ethan refused to part with it.  The chair had become as comforting as a warm handshake from an old friend – unfortunately, a subject he could not relate to with great authority.  Ethan had always been a loner.  His parents had been extreme over achievers but had never pushed Ethan to open up.  Before he could rub any more salt in that open wound, he changed his thought pattern to complete nothingness.

The sun gradually lowered itself and began pulling up the blanket of the horizon.  As dusk inched its way to darkness, Ethan remained listless in his chair.  Blackness swept through the apartment and Ethan found himself awash in a cascade of shadows and jagged streaks of moonlight.  Although the solitude did have a serene quality, Ethan could not shake the sense that the darkness held some sort of malice for him.  After a few more glasses of Mondavi, Ethan was feeling the effects of the wine and sleep crept methodically into the corners of his eyes and gently pulled down his eyelids.  As his breathing became heavy and rhythmic, the black canvas of his dreamscape was brushed clean and anxiously awaited a new splash of color.

 

~ Since I’m fairly inept at figuring out how to tag – I hope you will play the game too.  Maybe if I spend less time blogging and more time writing, I could actually get this book finished!!

Open mouth, insert foot

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I will apologize in advance, but this post may encompass a few previous ideas and come to one volcano-like explosion at the end.  It’s time to get personal.

It amazes me how some people on this revolving earth can manage to walk and chew gum at the same time.  The cavernous space where a brain should reside is so glaringly empty, that common sense just bounces from side to side, but is never allowed the freedom to exist or be put into practice.  The filter, that is most commonly used by people who actually utilize the firing neurons in their brain, will inevitably catch the phrases that tumble into our mouths before they have a chance to cross our lips.  That filter can save us from grave embarrassment and potential retribution.  Some people are not lucky or smart enough to know that the filter is available to them, or to be able to use it effectively.

Before we speak, we should ask ourselves certain questions.  1) Is it true?  2) Is it necessary? 3) Is it inspiring?  4) Will it improve upon silence by talking about it?    If not, keep your mouth shut and keep it to yourself.

I got a phone call from my brother tonight on his way home from the golf tournament he participated in today.  He was paired with a local couple in the same business that my dad worked in for decades.  Upon learning of my brother’s family name, the man made a comment so disparaging to my deceased father’s character that my brother was dumbfounded.  That one inane comment continued circulating to the forefront of his thoughts and plagued what should have been an enjoyable afternoon.

Foot in mouth disease is not just a myth.  It exists and is apparently thriving, preying on unsuspecting windbags who do nothing more than speak to hear the sound of their own melodic idiocy.  The venom that is currently coursing through my veins is making my vicious thoughts turn into a verbal barrage of words that my poor dog has never heard before.

If you have been following my blog, you know that I am a firm believer in Karma.  As much as I would like to hunt down this moron and let my vocabulary loose on him with the fury of a thousand hurricanes, I will heed my dad’s sage advice and rise above.   I revert, again, to one of my previous posts and say – you can’t cure stupid.

I can only hope that this sack of leaking idioms will have the light-bulb moment when he realizes what a gross misjudgment he made by opening his mouth in the first place.  And I can only hope he has very expensive taste in shoes, because he just jammed both of those Sperry Top-Siders in at the same time.  Bon appetit, asshole!

A poetic interlude

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I used to write a lot of poetry.  It was one of the original demons that stole my sleep.  Now it has epic battles with the monster that is helping fuel this blog.  Although both are headstrong and very willing competitors, the poetry demon won today.    This was the result of the battle.

Under a Blue Moon

I fit my frail hand into his as we gazed upon the moon,

the beauty of its reflection, comforting like a warm wind in June.

As the pale blue light enveloped us, we stood as one, unmoving,

engaging in a silent vow of love that would never need proving.

The stars returned our glances, embracing a life of their own,

smiling upon us as a distant loon lent music of eloquent tone.

A blend of harmonious voices, echoed the cry of the loon,

as we stood fixed, ever enchanted, by the intensity of the moon.

The night air swirled around us, laughing as it tickled the leaves.

The song of the frogs was found in the night and carried upon the breeze.

The rippling of the playful waves as their longing to touch the shore,

gave voices to the rhythm of sounds, sharing a tranquil rapport.

The magical songs in the blue moon light quieted ever so slightly,

as the glow of the moon and the array of stars ceased to shine so brightly.

His grip on my hand remained tender and sweet as he turned to look in my eyes.

A night of feelings shared by lovers under a blue moon and starry skies.