Thursday, May 8, 2014

A long ramble

Every day I think about what to write here, on my blog.  Then, nighttime comes.  And I am really full of words and thoughts and ideas.  Or, on a night like tonight, I just sit here and wonder what, if anything I have to say.

I look forward to being more mobile.  I am not driving at all right now, so I sometimes feel trapped.  I know that I can get a ride wherever I want pretty much whenever I want.  But I want to just go.  Anywhere.  Just drive.  Maybe to the fabric store.   Maybe just looking at pretty houses.  Anywhere.  I hope that once I recover from my brain surgery I will recover well enough that I can drive.   Look out world, here I come!

I am not sure what, if anything I am learning about life since being diagnosed with a brain tumor.   I know that I should be reaching deep into my soul and discovering the meaning of life.  I should look at the world with new eyes.   I should appreciate the birds and the flowers.  And all that jazz.   Thing is, I have done all of those things most of my adult life.  I am thoughtful.  I wonder and think and try to understand life.  Sometimes it all seems to make perfect sense- like when a mother finds that moment of bliss with her newborn.   Fleeting as it is, it is the magic stuff of life.

Then I go all human and damn the beauty and the philosophy.   Sweep the floor it's a mess.  Mow the grass.   Care about how the world, my world at least, looks and feels to me.  I probably care more about that kind of stuff than a deeply philosophical person "should".  I should be more Zen.  More in the moment.  I should meditate.

But dammit, I don't want to meditate.  I don't want to always overlook the negative and only think about the positive.  I want things done my way.  I feel like a small child stamping my foot and being angry while everyone looks on and tries to figure out what that child is upset about.

I have often joked that I am a Martha Stewart wanna be and turned out to be more of an Erma Bombeck!   The order of Martha Stewart seems so soothing and blissful.  Order.   And the reality is, life is messy.

It's a funny thing, remembering back to when I was a teenager.  I wanted to be different.  To be a non-conformist.  And how did I do that?  By wearing the same clothing and hair styles as my friends.  Sometimes I was ahead of the curve.  I wore "Twiggy" eye make up and painted flowers on my face before any one I knew.  Or maybe they didn't even do that.  I wore hiphuggers bell-bottom pants and went without a bra.  Of course I was so thin I didn't really have any hips to speak of, nor did I "need" a bra.   I stopped shaving my legs and arm pits as an act of rebellious independence.    Of course, the only one who cared, or even really noticed was my mother, who, I thought, didn't know anything.

So, here I am.  Past middle age, unless I expect to live to be 120 years old.  And I am still that free spirited teenager.   Somewhere deep inside I am still there.  I think of my uniqueness and look at the world as a miraculous place.

But, I am also the mom who sold Tupperware in the late 1980s.  I drive a car and live in the suburbs and spend hours balancing the bank account and paying bills.  I like having manicures and pedicures.  And I live in a very middle class neighborhood.  With people who I cannot imagine ever having been as cool as I was "back in the day".  Of course I don't know that, but I imagine it.

My neighbors have pretty houses.  They have nice lawns.  The houses I have been in over the 32 years we have lived here are well kept and tidy inside.  I love tidy.  I love clean.  Clean carpet.  Clean floors and counters and dishes.   I love the idea of having a nice yard.  Like the neighbors.   I know that is probably superficial.  But maybe, to me anyway, it is not superficial.  I mean, I know that I will be dead and gone one day and nobody will ever think "oh Nancy Sherwood, she did have a nice lawn".  I know that.  But the order in the groomed lawn and the organized home is only superficial to those who feel that way.  These are things that bring me peace. 

Maybe I am more Zen than I realize.   I grew up in chaos.  We had meals at regular times, and had clean clothes.  My mom kept the house reasonably tidy.  But there was so much chaos.   Tension.  Fear, constant fear that maybe I had not brushed my hair right or my shoes were dirty or I held my fork wrong.   We had to sit up straight at the dinner table. We never knew if someone or another would explode.   Food would go flying.  Loud, hurtful words would go flying.  Fists and belts lashed out. 

Maybe on some level that is why I find peace in order.   And why I have trouble coping when I feel that I am not understood.  I know for instance, when the kids were little, and they got dirt on the floor, they were not doing it to hurt me.  I am sure they didn't even know that they had done anything.  But I felt it.  "look at the dirt you tracked in"  "slap". 

Not sure if I am saying it in a way that will make sense to anyone reading this.  I am learning and going back there as I write.

I guess that the clutter in my world speaks to the clutter in my memories of my growing up years.

And then, I go and get a brain tumor.  What could be messier. symbolically, than that?

I know, I need to learn to "let go".  I have learned that.  Not 100%, because I am who I am.  But I am so much stronger than I need to be because that is how I survived as a reasonably intact human being.

This is a much longer ramble than I expected.  I will not read it over tonight, I will just post it.  Tomorrow I will probably do some editing.   Right now, I am going to go to bed.

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