I don’t write to be famous, I don’t write to be known, I write because I am and I want to be read. How sad to fill a room with paintings no one sees or play music no one hears. Writing is talking without sound, singing without score and dancing without movement and yet, it is all of them. It is a solitary art conjured from thought and expressed by the need to communicate.

HEAD SLAPS, SPEED BUMPS and LIGHTBULBS, one woman's WTF, oops and ah-ha moments of life.

They were published once, and as every writer knows, once is not enough.

Monday, November 11, 2019

Time, use it wisely

We’re in.

It is heaven to finally be surrounded with our things. Heaven to be back to just us. Heaven to cook for two people only.

Living with our daughter, her husband and our three year old angel of a granddaughter was a privildge but now, living in our new and spectacular in-law apartment has us settled in, finding a new routine and loving it.

My biggest revelation is how easy it is to live with less. I’m amazed by how the once seemingly unimportant has been pushed to the front of the line.

Things hold memories. And not simply things that enhance our limited space. The nonsensical, the battered, the broken and repaired little things that speak of someone dear or of an incident to precious to risk ‘forgotten’ I saved and display and use and remember.

We live in a mere 620 sq. ft. That’s a smidgen bigger than a two car garage. But sweetie, this ‘ain’t’ no garage. The ceiling in the living area soars above us almost fifteen feet. The space has a wow-factor that still surprises me every time I enter the room. The kitchen is bigger than my former kitchen and shares the wow-factor vaulted ceiling. The bathroom is huge. No sharing laundry facilities with the big house or traveling to a laundromat, my stackable washer and dryer tuck in their own nook. I love not having to go to the basement to wash clothes. Our bedroom is small. Queen sized bed, a couple of end tables and shelves for books, TV and memorable pieces. No dressers because our HUGE closet holds all our clothes and whatever else has to be stored away. We even have an attic above (almost full) and a half-high basement below. Amazing what less-used things we have stored down there even though we have to stoop over to move around.

I designed our small home and I’m so proud because it, (cliché alert), suits our needs to a T. I can’t think of one thing I’d change.

Living with less has become a blessing. We are sheered sheep. We have shed all the snarls and are brushed smooth of snags.

As I sit here writing, listening to beautiful music and looking out a window that slopes down a gentle hill to the road I realize how much my life has changed. I am grateful that a little over eight months ago I survived, grateful that I acted fast and had a medical team whose only task at the time was to save my life. Grateful that my family has taken on the huge changes we have made and forever in debt to the higher being who contemplated my existence and said, “not tonight Carolynn.” You have some time left.

I hope I use it wisely.

Monday, September 30, 2019

Yesterday I cried.

I got to unpack the boxes we have stored since the beginning of our new beginning. The in-law little home in not complete yet but we are almost there. I loaded the kitchen cabinets with all my kitcheny stuff. Pots, pans, dishes and glasses it was like seeing old friends after being apart for a long time.

I cried because I am so grateful to hold close the ‘things’ I have held, offered and washed  for decades. Yes they are simply things but they tell of dinners and get togethers. They tell of family. They tell of holidays, birthdays, wedding and baby showers. They speak of a houseful of friends and family after funerals too. They speak of the planned and the spontaneous. They speak of the "us" I got back yesterday.

Oh how I cried to touch them all again and bring back that which fills our lives.

Soon we will move into our little forever home. It has been more work than we could have imagined. Like I have said before, thank God we’re doing this now because we want to, not because we have to.

This experience from the unexpected and unimaginable, to a new home, from separate islands, to family living a blanket away has been more than a day at the beach. It has been a journey of enlightenment. Maybe I should write about it.

How lucky we are.
How damned lucky we are.

Sunday, July 28, 2019

I am a book in a blender

Life for me (for us) has been tossed in a blender. Right now it is switched on hi. If I wasn’t so afraid of boredom and lack of purpose I’d probably jump out of the jar and head for the couch. If I wasn’t so concerned about time running out I’d probably stop the quest to move forward. If I didn’t have a wake-up call in March I’d be going along as if I didn’t have a f-en care in the world. But that smack in the face by the reality of motility still raises a welt from time to time.

So I ask myself:
Why write?
Why dream?
Why try?
I’ll tell you why.
Because writing seeps out of the soul like no other art form. Through symbols it is a silent communication of spirit from mind to mind, heart to heart. It is said that a picture is worth a thousand words. I say a simple phrase can paint a gallery of pictures.

I am not proclaiming a competition among art forms. I paint and have won first place ribbons. I play the piano and have written music for a band and have basked in applause.

For me the last thirty-plus years of writing has been the most meaningful. Published hundreds of times as an essayist, op-ed writer, and columnist has taught me the power, the joy and the responsibility we must realize as writers. And I have come to know how much I still have to learn.

That’s why I continue to write, dream and try to tell my story.

I am a book.
So are you.

Sometimes the pages are flipped fast and sometimes they turn slowly. I’m not ready to shelf my book of efforts and dreams. I’m not willing to give up.
My latest project?

It is about that one thing families always hold close until the very end, secrets. Not the nasty ones. Not the controversial. This multi-generational story is about that one thing we hold so dear, survival of the spirit when the last wisp of hope departs.

This project has taught me that sometimes hope hides just beyond the tree line. A walk in the woods, taking an old path, creating a new one is what sustains my effort to make it to the place I never knew existed.

Come on. Wear comfortable shoes and walk with me. Discovery resides where we have never been.