Tuesday, August 29, 2006

Why are you staring at your clothes?

Everyone should have a roommate as funny, cool and introspective as SJ.

We bonded for life in the 70's and early 80's as we helped each other move from Junior High Band Fags to a poor man's (nerd's) Charlie's Angel at Ohio State.

We survived a life threatening journey out into the blizzard of '78
as we bought essentials such as TP
and the more important items..
chocolate and Tab.

We created 357 different versions of "Stuff", a mercurial recipe
that consisted of all unconsumed food in our 2 ft fridge topped with cheese.

We attended classes, regularly....
as long as we could get home in time to see Mary Tyler Moore re-runs.
This is where we learned how to live as single women who had career aspirations.

We digested Johnson's and Johnson's as we learned all the things we were not bold enough to ask our own mothers.

It is amazing how well we were prepared for life just from these two resources alone.

I was her first Psychology Behavior Modification Project.

It was a blast playing the unsuspecting lab rat.
I had read her notes and did all I could to interfere with her projected results.

Imagine her thinking that compliments would get me to clean more often.

I don't remember getting homesick while living with SJ.

She was home.

She could take one look at me and know we needed to talk.

She loved to listen. Loved to ponder.

As you watch SJ when she goes to work on helping you, you get this funny image.

She has a little man in her head that sorts things into different paths.
He is dressed in a smart brown suit and he sits at a practical desk in a comfortable chair.
The little man loves to work through problems.
It is important to remember that logic must be applied or the little man becomes very beside himself.

In contrast, growing up, I was more the dreamer.

At Ohio State we lived in an old restored victorian.
Lot's of charm, not much space and very little heat.

My bed rested in front of our closet.

Our closet had no doors.

When things were a challenge for me, I could be found...
lost in thought, sitting on my bed,
facing the closet.

"Why are you staring at your clothes?" SJ would ask.

SJ and her little man would get to work trying to help me make sense of whatever was happening at that moment.

The truth is, I really did not look at the clothes.

I was looking past them.

As I think back to SJ, and her little man in her head looking for reason,
partnered with my constant inquisitive imagination...
I have to smile.

These days, SJ still has her little man, but she is also more creative and more beautiful than when we were 18.

She asked me the other day, " Why do you blog?, How often do you blog?,
Aren't you afraid of letting so many people know what you are thinking?"

I could only explain it in one way.

Blogging is like staring at your clothes and then letting people know what you see.

Saturday, August 26, 2006

Like Red on a Rose

To be able to love like red on a rose
So complete

That concept got me thinking about the different facets and powers of love.

Do you think you can love someone more than yourself?

I have watched many relationships flounder because the extent of the love between the two people was unequal.

One person simply loved the other more.

I have been there myself.

"Love Hurts" has made it as a hit once again as it sings to all those who were with me in that experience.

Should we stop the capacity to love someone more than they love us in return?

As a parent, I hope that is not possible.

Therefore, I would say it is best to let ourselves love.

Should we love ourselves as much as we love others?

It is very hard to partner with an insecure person.

True love of ourselves is wise as it enables us to maintain ourselves so that we can be there for others.

This does not answer the question, "Can we really love someone more than ourselves?"

We can envy them.

We can live through thier talents and get reflected glory from thier achievements.

I don't think that we can truly love anyone more than we love ourselves.

Not when you define love as it is defined in 1 Cor. 13.

If we loved ourselves as we are to under the definition in this beautiful manual on redemption,
we would have so much more power and control over our destinys.

To be able to Love Like Red on a Rose, we would have to understand how complete the promise is when we live like we value the blood on the cross.

Through my husband, my sons and through prayer, I have learned to love myself more.

I am so thankful for the pain that comes from staying open and staying vulnerable as it has allowed me the joy of letting so many more amazing people get close to me.

You may be wondering why such a deep look into love and pain.

Sadly, the reason is that Micheal and I lost a friend this week.

My favorite memory of her was a night spent dancing.

Her husband and she were a joy to watch as they celebrated spontaneous fun
dancing with us
surrounded by hundreds of sisters at a catholic convention.

I don't think I can put into words any better than Garth how I feel about her passing:

"Looking back on the memory of
The dance we shared beneath the stars above
For a moment all the world was right
How could I have known you'd ever say goodbye
And now I'm glad I didn't know
The way it all would end the way it all would go
Our lives are better left to chance I could have missed the pain
But I'd of had to miss the dance
Holding you I held everything
For a moment wasn't I the king
But if I'd only known how the king would fall
Hey who's to say you know I might have changed it all
And now I'm glad I didn't know
The way it all would end the way it all would go
Our lives are better left to chance I could have missed the pain
But I'd of had to miss the dance
Yes my life is better left to chance
I could have missed the pain but I'd of had to miss the dance"

Watching hundreds of people come to pay their respects this week.

I can easily say:
"Pat, you were loved, like red on a rose.
What a stunning rose you were."

Thursday, August 24, 2006

Life, Balance, Love and Stuff

A couple of years ago my husband was the best man at a wedding.
The wedding was the first for the bride and the second for the groom.
In thier vows, the bride told her love that if she were a kite, he was the tail that gave her balance.
In truth, most kites are engineered to be limited in the distance they travel above the earth
if they do not have a tail to give them balance.
If you think of your goals in life as a kite, and think of your key relationships as source of balance,
you will see the wisdom in keeping people close to you that create drag in your life.
You need lift in your life to fly, but you also need drag to enable you to control your steering.
Being a drag, can be a good thing.
For when those people who help give you balance,
who have nothing to gain but the joy of watching you reach your goals,
watch over you,
slow you into wisdom,
you are better able to enjoy the journey safely.

Looking back over the last couple of years,
I can think of many people who have helped myself and my husband have balance.

It is impressive to see when two people are able to be equally there for one another.
Taking turns lifting, encouraging and offering wisdom.
Micheal and Joel are two good friends that are constant in thier expectations for greatness for themselves,
and they expect no less from each other.
I am thankful for thier frienship as they help one another become better men.

Sunday, August 20, 2006


I am just tickled to be back home!
I am ok with quiet time and I am ok with being alone.
I am ok with time with family and friends and seeing new places.
But there is no place like home.

I missed my sweet husband, our sons our Annie.

I am also thankful for the time I had with family.
We have had too little time together over the last 20 years.
It is very hard for me to live so far away from my sibblings and my parents.
I envy families that had the wisdom to stay close enough to where you can drive to them when they need you.
I have not given up hope on getting closer to my sibblings the older I get.

My father is 76. He has battled back from many tough times.
We are all stronger because of his wisdom.
Watching him lead us through the aging process is a gift.
I look at life these days with new eyes.

I hear things differently than when I was younger, differently than before last year when we lost my husband's mom.
I miss her.
I had gotten used to the idea of having her in my life.
She was so sweet to me.

I hope that the older I am allowed to get, the more tickled I get.

I hope I will start some new hobbies.

I also hope I will become:
Less critical
More forgiving
More patient
More Encouraging

I hope that others will hear...
My laughter, mixed with my husband's, our son's, our families, our friends we have and new ones to come....
What Beautiful Music That Would Be

Saturday, August 12, 2006

Wow- that hurt- but it was fun

No I am not a sadist or into S and M.
I just needed to test myself today.
Do something unplanned, just cause.
First, got an edgy haircut.
Then started looking at myself.
You know, really looking.
Wow, I love the hair.
It was so edgy I had to talk my stylist into it.
After we got done, I told her...
"I think a piercing would look great with this"
After much discussion, we agreed I should call someone younger to be sure I did not get something that would be a signal for some alternative lifestyle.
OK...so the planner in me has to show up.
Called my youngest, got advice on what to go with.
He was totally bummed that I would not wait and go with him.
I told him I was being spontaneous and if I waited, that would blow the whole point of doing it.
Quincy Jones was quoted as saying that you can tell a person's age by how resistant to change they are.
Pretty cool. Acceptance of change seems easier to control than the effects of gravity and cell degeneration.
I keep his qoute in my mind as I left the salon.
So...off I go to get my piercing.
Scared, determined, smiling.
I had fun with the girl who did it.
Her name is Margaret and she has tremors. She assured me that her hand tremors would not affect the process.
I am fearless.
It was all over in a matter of seconds.
I am still smiling as I think about the next time I get spontaneus.
I think I will plan for this at least once a month.

I think it will keep me young

Thursday, August 03, 2006


I would never have believed that I would have become a person who loves reality TV...
I must confess...
I am watching way too much of a pretense of real life for others I should be using my time for more self-fulfilling and world changing events.
Another Blog.

I bring this up to share that I first heard a woman being called Dude on American Idol.

At first, I thought I must be hearing something that Randy alone used as a way to show praise or respect, but after the last couple weeks I have heard more young people using this.

I realize now I must be behind on how widespread this nickname is. I was a little surprised the first time I was called Dude.

Women being called dude. Let's face it, women don't get great nicknames anyway. Most nicknames for women are derogatory.

I am sure you can think of at least five nicknames that are not things you would like to be called. Men seem to get better nicknames, Champ for example is something that most people would think highly of if called.

At best, dudette would only have been fun if you were a cowgirl. I have some nicknames for some of my friends.

Chicky Baby is one that works if you have a friend with a fresh fun sassy attitude. Diva is one that would be ok for me if anyone wants to start working that into our conversations or the way you refer to me.

I think the funny thing about Dude is now it is unisexual. I wonder if Broke back Mountain had anything to do with this. Kinda makes you wonder about Dude Ranches in general.

Is there anything wrong with women feeling complimented because they have been awarded with or risen to the level of getting a male nickname? I guess not.

Might be cool for some creative female writers to get in touch with the Desperate Housewives producers or Grey's Anatomy produces and submit some positive fresh new positive nicknames for women.

It would be daring to go that route instead of playing to the negative, side of what women call each other.