Monday, August 24, 2015

A birthday note, to self

This next year, remember...
There will be days dripping in gold,
and others that are just okay,
and some that are pretty terrible.
Try not to be too scared when the ‘terribles’ come along.
Maintain a positive spirit and a kind heart.
Quiet the ill-intended.
Work through the insecurities.
Don’t let anyone mistake being kind, as being weak.
Take care of your body.
Find something that compels you, 
and dedicate time to learning more about it. 
Don’t be so grumpy about the crumbs around the apartment.
The causer of the crumbs makes you really, really happy.
Be someone who, when mentioned in conversation,
is described as good.
Call home. Call sisters. Send letters.
Let friends know you're thinking of them.
Be a #1 aunt.
Keep travelling. Keep adventuring.
Maybe figure out how to get a dog.
Do the best you can this year.
And have the very best time doing it.

Tuesday, July 21, 2015

Memories in the Attic

I was home in Connecticut about a month ago
spending time with my family,
paying the neighborhood donkeys a visit,
giving Little Cat scratches behind her ear. 
During my trip
I got baited into sorting through 
old bins and dusty boxes from our attic. 
I guess our sweet old house 
needs a sturdy new roof
and with that, 
the odds and ends 
and treasures that have accumulated 
over the years and grown comfortable and settled 
among old winter coats and broken lacrosse sticks -
Well. Their worth was being reevaluated. 
Cue almond-sized Emily tears
of panicky separation anxiety.
I sat for nearly 4 hours
and read through old love letters,
remembering the innocence of middle school crushes
and the romance that unfolded
on loose leaf paper.
I flipped through yearbooks and scrapbooks,
pausing on a page occasionally.
I wonder what happened to him?
Did she ever become a vet?
Daring myself to remember the exact layout
of my camp cabin,
the familiar smell of my elementary school,
the first kisses and heartbreaks,
high school victories and schoolyard gossip.
I thumbed through old exams
and high school essays.
Mix-tapes and photo collages,
friendship bracelets and old movie ticket stubs.
And cards.
So many cards.
Dozens and dozens and dozens of cards.
Which is funny because, I write and send a lot of cards.
 I never really linked the boxes
filled with cards in my parents attic
to my present day pleasure
of writing someone a card.
I scanned old letters marked AIRMAIL
sent from my childhood friend in England.
I chuckled.
The updates we deemed worthy
of a cross-continental journey.
An inquiry about my doll,
sent over oceans and mountain ranges.
Funny; sweet.
I squeezed my eyes shut.
I wished every question
were as simple as such.
Birthday wishes from my grandparents -
long before I reached double digits.
Words of encouragement from my dad:
I'm so proud of the woman you are becoming.
'Just Because' notes, from my mom,
with water colored scenes of desert cacti,
and smiling kittens.
When did I grow from child to adult?
From handwritten cards
with googly eyed dinosaurs and juggling bears,
to emails, littered with entitlement
and laced with stubborn pride?
Did it happen overnight, under a full moon?
Or was it more gradual,
as the leaves changed and days shortened.
I considered it briefly,
shrugged my shoulders and began to
decide what stays and what goes.
What memories to keep,
and which to part with.
It was cathartic;
the flood of the past,
and then their quick release.
But I kept all the cards.
Every single one.
xo


















Tuesday, May 12, 2015

Word Drops

Last night we watched the sweetest short film.
It was centered around the theme of people 
entering and exiting our lives,
and how the abrupt shifts in those relationships
ultimately can become a catalyst for a bigger change.
It showcased the difficulty associated 
with someone you love leaving you;
be it platonic love, parental love, romantic love.
And it made me think.
And it made me feel.
And it made me cry.
Dean asked if it was a sad cry or a happy one, and I couldn't really tell.
I think it was a mixture of both.
I had been wanting to share an update on the blog for a while now –
but  each time I sat down to write
the words tasted stale and tinny in my mouth, 
like chewing on aluminum.
I'm not sure why.
And then last night we watched this little movie
and it made all the words floating around in my head
drip out of me in the form of salty tears.
It felt pretty good – to release those tears,
 the happy and the sad mixing together.
It was like I could see the words that were stuck in my head,
roll down my cheeks in liquid word drops: 
‘disappointed.’ ‘nostalgic.’ ‘comforted.’ ‘unsure.’ ‘loved.’
Sometimes you just need a little cry I guess.
Followed by a kiss on the forehead and the switch of a lamp.
Here’s to a gentle and happy Tuesday, friends.

xo

Monday, February 9, 2015

Random Acts of Kindness


Today is the start of Random Acts of Kindness week,
with the grand finale being Valentine's Day. 
I am pretty sure my heart is going to explode confetti hearts. 
So go ahead! Don't be shy. 
Make an  extra effort to show love and kindness 
to all living creature that surround you,
big and small. 
As Christian Larson said: 
" Think well of yourself and to proclaim this fact to the world,
not in loud words but great deeds.
To live in faith that the whole world is on your side
so long as you are true to the best that is in you.”
xox

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

On Being Brave

John Wayne said that courage is being scared to death,
but saddling up anyway. 
Well.
I didn't. 
Last night, I wanted to be brave. 
But I wasn't. 
I found myself caught off guard.
 I'd like to say that my response to the scenario was selfless -
that I reacted in a way that would
ultimately spare some discomfort.
But I still felt like a chicken.
Here's what I earned though:
No matter how much you prepare,
some circumstances are going to be a little scary.
And after the initial jolt,
a long walk on a cold night can do wonders for the nerves.
So can a slice of pizza.
And a phone call to someone who loves you.
Followed by a long hug and a deep sigh.
And the promise that tomorrow will be better.
Braver.
and good.


Sunday, December 21, 2014

Winter Solstice Wishes

Today, the sun dips to it's lowest point in the sky,
giving us a delayed dawn and an early sunset.
Happy Winter Solstice. 
From here on out, every day moving forward will be a bit brighter. 
In a few short days, I'll have my feet in the sand 
and my face towards the sun.
Christmas spent by the Caribbean Sea.
I. Can't. Wait.
I'm appreciative of the growth and 
self awareness the past 12 months brought,
but am very much forward facing to the New Year. 
As I consider this past year,
I was encouraged and inspired by most.
Loved and supported by many.
Disappointed by few.
I'm content with that breakdown. 
I don't typically count blessings.
I am more of a 'thank my lucky stars' type of gal. 
So ultimately, I send 2014 off with a kiss and a fond goodbye.
And as we usher in 2015, 
I will look up towards a sky full of big, bright, beautiful stars. 
I wish the very same for each and all of you. 
xo





Wednesday, November 26, 2014

For Simple Things...

My eyes are clear. My heart is full.
I have sunshine on my shoulders,
and a hand that holds mine.
For these simple things, I am grateful.
Happy Thanksgiving friends.
 
“For each new morning with its light, for rest and shelter of the night, for health and food, for love and friends, for everything thy goodness sends. I awoke this morning with devout thanksgiving for my friends, the old and new.” 

      Ralph Waldo Emerson