Melancholic Relief

I've been toying with a phrase for the past couple weeks. Something of a "melancholic relief" has settled on me. I've been really struggling with several major pieces of who I am since the year began. Several things in my life have changed and several more are yet to change.

I've come to some important conclusions in the past couple weeks. These decisions are pulling me into a place of sadness for the loss of what was, but also a peace because decisions that haven't been easy are finally being made in a way that I know is best for me and my family.

Change is good, right? Everyone says that, but when the change requires a complete rearrangement of priorities and even things you have believed your whole life... well, it just makes the change all the more difficult to deal with - even when you know it's a necessary step in the journey to become who you are supposed to be.

So, it's melancholy. I look at what I'm losing, knowing I may never have it again - at least not in the same way. But it's relief. It's best for me and my immediate family. It's necessary. It's part of who I am inside and who I need to become. And as sad and scary as it is, I know it's right.


Shapes Like Stars

Across the universe... this galaxy...
...these little pieces burn

shooting light
that blinds the road

and takes away our view

...if we could only see
this thing we are

and chart this course

we'd plot our path... guide us home...
...avoiding edges
cutting paths

in sharply twisted turns


Flash Fiction Friday: "A Whole Life in One Day"

They barely knew each other, even after watching each other from afar for years.

And now, he studied her. Up close. Personal. From only inches away. One day, by chance, had brought them here.

His eyes detailed the memory he'd replay later - and for years to come. Her cheeks, flushed from the chill of the air and something else - something infinitely more permanent. Her hair, softly silhouetted in the glow of the streetlight behind her. Her lashes brightly glistening in errant flakes of snow.

"When I look at you, I see forever."

He watched his whispered words wrap around her, his warm breath causing a shivered smile to tease her face and his heart, embracing them both in eternity.

He pulled her close and touched his lips to hers. In one second, he knew his life was held inside this day.



The drops shatter silence,
     and maybe even glass,
     pounding against the pane.
As she walks,
     unhurried as it falls,
     in puddle-soaked glistening soles.
Rivulets shiver
     and trickle away
     from the patterns relieved by her heels.
And somewhere amidst
     the myriad drops,
     one solitary tear gains weight.

On My Terms

I took
the longest
most difficult
most painful
way to get

You better believe
I'll fight
for the right
to stay.


In Spite

Dear Expectations,

You totally suck at this love stuff. You're always getting in the way, and you always ruin stuff that's beautiful. You have no respect for spontaneity or romance, forcing all these obligations on me. I'm just tired of trying to keep up with you, and I think it's just time to be... me.

I have chosen to love in spite of you.



Ice Cream and Power of Attorney

Today I realized I'm "old." Now I realize that probably half my readership is older than I am, so don't freak out on me. Just go with it.

When I was my son's age, I was in awe of the fact that my parents were older than 30. I couldn't imagine ever being that old. They were so big and they knew so much. They never had any problems. They didn't have to ask permission to go anywhere or do anything they wanted to. They could eat ice cream whenever they wanted - even after I went to bed. Yes, I did sneak downstairs once in a while and catch you, Mom and Dad.

I could go into how I've grown up, had my own kids, and have gained perspective on and respect for my parents in ways I never could have as a child. And yes, I confess, I too eat ice cream after my kids go to bed... and yes, it is so that I don't have to share it with them - mom's prerogative. But, that's not the point of this post.

Point is, I've watched my father take care of his mother for the past several years. He sat through various doctor visits with her: paying attention, asking questions, taking notes, and communicating how Gramma was doing to all of the rest of us. He was the oldest child and power of attorney, and had the distinct "privilege" to watch his mother's health decline right in front of him.

So this morning, my mom asked me to take her to the eye doctor. Now, it had nothing to do with me being POA and everything to do with the fact that she wasn't able to drive home because they had to dilate her eyes. It was an odd feeling though. I sat and listened to the doctor explaining what was going on with her, and I was reminded of the fact that I have all that to look forward to: the symptoms, the meds, the tests, etc.

And it better be years (and hopefully a couple decades) before I have to serve as Power of Attorney for either of my parents. They're not "that old." But they took care of me, and someday I'll take care of them (as I was reminded by my parents last night when we had dinner for Dad's birthday).

But, time marches on. And sometimes it just hits me. Nothing ever stays the same... except for the ice cream.