joannebest











sick

 

I was all kinds of proud of me and my declaration of independence and freedom for the Brand New Year numbered 2018.

I even made plans to (gasp) leave the house and go out.

On a Saturday night.

With my favorite person in the world.

I was giddy with anticipation and delighted at the idea of spending time with my Not-Daughter. We were going to some really cool coffee house type place to talk and do girl stuff aka I have Christmas gifts that arrived late which is really just an excuse for me to spend time with my Not-Daughter.

Then came the Great Collision of 2018, The Bombogenisis named Grayson and a nasty cold on the verge of turning into bronchitis. Because I can’t have nice things.

After the latest storm dumped a whole lotta snow and dragged the temperatures down so low that single digits felt warm compared to the wind chill factor, I, of course, started getting sick. Anyone with fibromyalgia knows what that means, it means a simple head cold can turn into bronchitis, pneumonia, you name it, the possibilities are endless.

Unfortunately, it also means I had a choice to make, should I stay or should I go?

I spent half the day pro and con-ing in between going through boxes of tissues at an alarming rate and attempting to sleep my sickness away.

It didn’t work.

I had to cancel.

And cancelling plans with my Not-Daughter damn near broke my heart. She’s a sweetheart and understood but I still feel awful having to cancel our attempt at getting together. Because I worry and worry and worry due to years of cancelled plans and the reactions of whoever I’ve had to cancel plans with. That’s probably not even close to being grammatically correct but I can’t care about grammar right now. I’ve been writing this for 2 days because I’ve spent more time sleeping than I have being awake. Saturday I slept from 7:30pm until 7:30am Sunday morning, when I woke up feeling worse. I drank a few cups of tea and went back to sleep around noon and woke up a little after 5pm, still sick. One bowl of chicken soup, one cup of tea and a small handful of vitamins later and I was back in bed, asleep before 8pm.

And now, here I am. Still sick, still feeling awful about cancelled plans and still wishing I was a time traveler.

Did I forget to mention I wish I was a time traveler? Is my fevered brain making nonsense out of nonsense? Will all these cups of tea and bowls of chicken soup finally make me feel better? Will I ever get rid of this flu-like thing that does nothing but make me want to sleep? Will I ever get to spend quality time with my Not-Daughter? Will I ever stop babbling guiltily and end this nonsensical post?

I love you Not-Daughter, I hope some day I can grow up and be just like you. And also, I hope I can sleep more and wake up feeling all better.

Until then, due to circumstances beyond my control, in the almost-words of Not-Helen Reddy, I am woman, hear me snore.

 

sick2

 

 

 

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{January 3, 2018}   2018 : The Year Of Me

butterfly1

“For a new year to bring you something new, make a move, like a butterfly tearing its cocoon! Make a move!”
― Mehmet Murat ildan

 

I hereby declare 2018 to be The Year Of Me.

If you either know me or “know” me, you understand this is a big deal.

I do not put myself first.

I do not put myself second.

It’s actually a miracle if I make my own list at all so to attempt to devote an entire year to me and my own selfish whims way of doing things, you know, thinking of myself for a change, well that is a huge deal.

Huge enough that I’ve been writing this since January 1st but have been intimidated, by myself no less, because it’s not very polite to make it all about me.

Well, after a lifetime of devoting myself to those around me I finally realized you kinda get treated in a way somewhat similar to the way you treat yourself.

Yeah, fuck that anymore. Oh, and any and all grammar Nazis can piss off too. Mangling words is one of the few pleasures of life so, uh, there. Now back to me.

I, as is common knowledge, am a trifecta of guilt. Middle and only girl child? Check. Catholic School education? Check. Born under the sign of Cancer? Check. Don’t get all picky, it’s a trifecta, take my word for it. I’m also Irish, believe me, there’s guilt in there somewhere as well.

I’m not going to re-live all the stuff that kept me running in place getting nowhere, suffice it to say I was a caretaker for various Family members, blood or otherwise, for a good 10 years. The odd thing about it all is I was born to take care of others and I actually enjoy it. Making others feel good, helping others out in times of trouble, doing any little thing to makes someone else’s life even a little bit easier, these are things that make me feel good. The problem is I’m an all-in kinda gal. Once I dip a toe in, before I know it I’m in over my head while everyone else is just floating.

I wanna float for awhile too.

I should have been a nurse. Or a teacher. Or a Mother to human babies instead of only fur babies. Sometimes I just want to hug the world and everyone in it. But it would be nice, I imagine, if somebody wanted to return the favor once in awhile.

Shake it off Suzy, this ain’t no pity party. Grow a spine and deal with it. That was me giving myself a pep talk. I tend to open my mouth and my Mother’s words come out of it lately. That, well, that is a good thing.

Back on topic, 2018 will be is the year of Me with a capital “M”.

I resolve to start thinking about myself for a change. To stop leaving myself out of the loop and start living. Socializing. Getting out of the damn house and doing stuff. Write. Write some more. Keep writing. But, also, most importantly, live. And if living includes doing things for other people, even better, I just have to remind myself daily that I count too.

I have a plan. Sorta.

Of course I’ve picked the worst time of the year to become all about me because it’s damn near freezing outside and we’re due for another snowstorm but I can’t let that be an excuse stop me from reaching my goals. Sure, I can strap on my Fitbit and walk around in circles but that’s not the same as walking outside and getting in a few miles a day. So instead of beating myself up as per usual, I’ve decided to accept the fact that I won’t be getting anywhere near 7 miles a day until Springtime and that’s okay.

I resolve to go with the flow yet make sure that flow includes me at the top, or whatever the correct terminology is when referring to a flow.

I resolve to remove myself from the floor and stop allowing people to walk all over me.

I resolve to laugh more and cry less, although a good hard cry now and then is a good thing.

I resolve to do things that may be expected of me, as long as I do things my way.

I resolve to finish writing this stupid blog-type thing I’m writing which, by my own admission, is kinda boring but guess what? It’s my blog and I get to write whatever I want.

It is also my life. It’s time for me to take it back and live it.

 

 

 

“I used to have this toy, a magic slate. You wrote or drew on it and then, just by pulling up the plastic cover, everything you did disappeared and you could start new. Maybe everyone feels that on New Year’s Eve: They can pull up the magic sheet and rewrite their lives.”

― V.C. Andrews

magic slate

 

 

 

 

 

 



{December 8, 2017}   Breaking The Ice

breaking ice1

Is it possible to forget how to write?

It’s 3:42am EST as I type these words, I woke up half an hour ago and found myself unable to go back to sleep. You know how your mind switches on and no matter what you do, you can’t stop those thoughts from swirling and cluttering? It’s usually your worst fears or insecurities that seem to pop up most around those hours, I heard that 3am is the Devil’s hour, it was in some article talking about a weird phenomena where a whole bunch of people around the world wake up during the 3am hour, like the Devil has an alarm clock somewhere and it wakes up those who are susceptible.

The major flaw I find in that theory is time zones. Does everyone wake up at the same time, or does everyone wake up at 3am local time? Either Hell is full of alarm clocks all set for the same time or my mind is scrambling for something to write about.

Because it’s been a long time.

I hate to play the death card again but those of you who have followed my blog previously,you all know I had that Trifecta of Death, the domino effect that began with a hurricane acting all “I’ll huff and puff and blow your house down”, followed by the year of rebuilding, then the Trifecta of Death which was actually more like Double Digits of Death because almost my entire Family got wiped out one by one leaving me with one older brother who has no use I mean love I mean, well, he doesn’t really know me nor does he want to, one Aunt I love who lives far away and a handful of cousins, most of who live across the country, and no more Family home I worked so hard to save, which I did with the help of many, but since the sale after my Parents died, I’ve yet to drive by the house, I’m afraid I’ll break down and bawl like a baby.

I just wanted to get that out of the way, for those of you at home playing along for the first time.

So much has changed, I seem to find myself lost and aimless, the only person able to understand me is a 19 year old daughter of friends of mine. She’s me when I was 19 and the daughter I never had, only way cooler than me.

I’m doing that thing I do, ramble, babble, talk too much.

I hear that accusation a lot these days which is pretty ironic seeing as I talk to no one except my husband and his sister, we all still live in the same house, they go to work and I have no job which is all good when I’m writing but I haven’t been writing so I’ve been feeling pretty useless/worthless/all-the-less-words.

Maybe I have Stockholm Syndrome.

Hey, that’s a thing you know!

I talk to myself, my cats, an occasional few minutes on the phone with my bestie who’s life is pretty much the same as mine so our contact is more textual than vocal. I’m the girl who would talk to her Mother 5 times a day, even my Dad and deceased Brother would call me all they time but they were more like 16 times a day.

So when you’re backed against the wall you might as well give in and hope your Muse wakes up and smacks you awake. Because I’ve been sleepwalking through life and it’s time to WAKE UP!!!

Silence isn’t always golden, sometimes silence sucks.

 

breaking ice

 



{August 13, 2014}   I Woke Up

nightmare2
just when you pull yourself up
the hammer comes down, like a whack-a-mole
on a cheap boardwalk game,
happiness is non-existent,
nothing more than a thread-worn blanket
thrown over misery then yanked away,
the only thing underneath is vacant loss,
hopelessness, and a lack of belief,
in me in you in everything,
i used to believe anything was possible,
and then,
i woke up
nightmare1



{June 19, 2014}   Unanswerable Riddles

forestroadeye
you make me think
more than i should,
see, my stubborn claws just won’t let go of a thing,
but when those movies fill my head,
they’re mine, not yours,
or maybe they’re coincidentally ours
because i don’t steal your thoughts
and you don’t steal mine,
the similarities are purely unintentional,
or another version of the chicken and the egg
and what came first,
an unanswerable riddle,
kinda like how we found ourselves on the same side of the road,
i wonder sometimes,
if we deviated from the norm
maybe hid amongst the brush and foliage,
lost in a pile of forgotten clutter,
i wonder,
would anyone notice?
forestroad



{April 25, 2014}   Morning Minutia

morning4
it’s the morning minutia i miss most,
you and me,
a cup of tea without boundaries or barricades
and everything on the table,
nothing sacred, nothing secret,
just open roads and smooth sailing
because you never steer me wrong,
even in your absence i hear your voice in my head
letting me find my way, urging me on
to find my perfect me,
no matter where you are
there’s a certain strength you built inside me,
instinctive and innate,
connected through the blood line of the ancient ones
or maybe just a crazy happenstance,
something put me here,
now,
this way,
these days,
but lately there’s a more frequently occurring calm,
i’m beginning to trust the absence
even when the shadow-monsters whisper ‘never forever’,
this me i’m becoming is learning to banish those thoughts
designed to break me and i breathe easy,
the sound of your voice silky smooth
sliding through my mind
keeps those waiting times safe and sure
and much more bearable
morning1



{January 29, 2014}   Robot Love

coupleignoring
every day is mechanical,
their feet hit the ground, in different directions
he goes there and she goes there,
apart, away,
now, not much more than strangers
who used to know each other
going through the motions in lockstep till it’s habit,
like memorizing mathematics,
multiplying and dividing,
adding and subtracting,
without deviation from the rules,
rust flakes like tears falling to the floor
she sweeps them under the rug
he pretends to not notice and they go on their merry way
step by step by rote
like robots
robotlovee



sephandscally
AUTHORS NOTE: Even though she wants to be alone, Persephone’s been feeling ignored by me, so this is a little peek at what she’s been up to, also known as The Persephone Myth, My Way. All photos were taken by me excluding the first one, which came from the pool of Bing. Now, please to enjoy Persephone’s day at the beach.
My internal alarm gives me a gentle nudge waking me soft and slow.
Slipping out of bed in the pre-dawn hours I tip-toe quietly out the door and make my way to the beach to watch the sunrise, with only my thoughts to keep me company.
I have a lot to think about but right now, I have no desire to think about anything more taxing than whether or not I should grab a jacket to ward off the early morning chill.
I’m at a crossroads with no sense of direction.
My life has turned into a series of dramas with no resolution and I feel as if this is it, time’s up, it’s make-it-or-break-it time.
If I don’t figure out what the hell I’m doing with my life, and soon, I’m going to be the one who breaks.
I’ve spent most of my life worrying about everyone else and always putting myself on the back burner but that’s gotten me nothing.
Just me running in place going nowhere fast.
The feel of the ocean breeze playing with my hair reminds me why I love this time of the day. It’s quiet, hushed, nothing but the sound of the waves lapping gently against the shoreline. I idly wonder where the seagulls go to sleep as I sink down onto the cool sand.
I’ve been successfully avoiding my husband for weeks now and I know that Hades has been showing more restraint than even I knew he was capable of.
I know I have to come to some sort of decision soon and I will, but right now I don’t want to think of anything.
As the sun peeks over the horizon a gull appears as if out of nowhere coming in for a soft landing right next to me.
I’m the only person on the beach so there was no mistaking who was speaking as the sea-bird opened his beak and quietly whispered “Persephone”.
2010-09-30 11.08.37
Soon as I heard that voice I jumped to my feet and started walking away, cursing under my breath.
To the casual observer there may have been something odd about the lone seagull hovering next to me as I walked along the shoreline.
To me it was just another day at the beach.
“Persephone you really need to come back early!”
This was getting ridiculous. No matter where I went, no matter what I did, solitude was impossible.
All I wanted was some time to myself.
I thought I could be alone for at least a little while when I slipped out earlier to see the sunrise but it wasn’t to be. Ascalaphus had appeared beside me in the form of a seagull pleading with me to come home and I had a gnawing suspicion that Hades was behind it.
“I’m not talking to you Scally. Go on, fly away, shoo!”
I started walking faster and he started flapping his wings harder to keep up.
He was still having trouble adjusting to his avian form. Serves him right for ratting me out when I ate those stupid pomegranate seeds but it could have been worse. He might be a bird but at least he wasn’t a dead bird.
“Persephone please! You’re needed back home!”
He did sound a little panicky but I was determined to ignore his pleas.
My determination lasted all of two seconds.
“Don’t even talk to me Ascalaphus, I’m still pissed at you. Go away!”
“Please Persephone, I’m sorry I told your Mother you ate the seeds, you have to forgive me, you can’t stay mad at me this long and you have to-”
“I don’t have to do anything! Now get the hell out of here!”
“You must return to Hades!”
I was so sick of being told what to do by everyone and my Mother that I did what any grown woman would do, I turned tail and ran down the beach as fast as I could.
After managing to lose my flying shadow I spent the rest of the day alone, wandering the streets of the quaint little seaside town I’d grown to think of as my safe place.
It was driving me crazy that Scally had found what I thought was my secret hideaway.
If I didn’t know better I’d swear Hades had a GPS implanted on me somewhere. More than likely though, somebody’s pockets were probably bulging with a big fat wad of cash. One thing that had never changed over the centuries was the fact that pretty much anyone could be bought.
I should’ve at least dyed my hair or something.
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I stayed away from the beach house the rest of the day. Sleep wasn’t my friend lately and I was hoping all the walking I’d done today would tire me out enough to sleep through the night.
I decided to end the night with one more stroll on the beach before turning in.
As I walked along the shoreline the surf swirling around my ankles was frothy and foamy, like beer.
Which sounded like heaven now that I thought about it. And I don’t even like beer.
Maybe if I got mind-numbingly drunk I could forget all the bullshit clogging up my brain.
I’ve been in avoidance-mode for so long now I was getting on my own nerves.
“I’m pathetic,” I muttered into the sea air.
“You’re just catching on now?” Scally dropped out of the sky right in my path, flapping his wings slow and flying backward.
I had to ask him how he did that sometime.
Some other time.
Some time when I actually wanted to talk to him rather than squeeze his neck till his beady little seagull-eyes popped out of his head so he’d stop giving me that guilt-inducing look.
“Hey, don’t kill the messenger,” Scally squawked.
“You read minds now?” I asked.
“I don’t have to, you look pissed.”
Nothing worse than a self-satisfied seagull flying in your path.
Wait, yes there was, a self-satisfied seagull with a smirk.
“I am pissed!” I shouted. “Why can’t you just leave me alone! I don’t want to deal with-”
“Too bad princess, you got no choice, suck it up and get your ass back to Hades, there’s some serious shit going down.”
With that Scally flew out of sight leaving me the way I wanted to be left, alone.
Suck it up? Serious shit?? Princess???
He was watching too many bad movies again.
A crashing wave sprayed me, drawing my attention away from Scally and his latest reminder of my responsibilities.
It really was a beautiful night.
The moon was bright and full, reflecting a path of light leading straight to where I stood ankle-deep in the surf.
I wanted to walk on water, dance across the reflected moonlight and not think about the mess of a life waiting for me.
So for just a little while longer, that’s what I did.
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to be continued…



lnearly empty jelly jar
Dear Sir and/or Madame,

This letter is to inform you that I am returning this Life.

I’m unsatisfied with the product I’ve been given and I demand an immediate refund.

While I understand in theory that there is no guarantee of a Happy-Ever-After, I was not informed of the possibility of a Happy-Never-After.
This is completely unacceptable.

While I have never fallen victim to the whole Bait-and-Switch thing before, I am now devastated to find that my entire Life has been nothing more than the Mother of all Bait-and-Switches.

You lied.

I cried.

And I really hate crying so I want my money back.

I have followed all the instructions I was given since the day I became me, but that pot of gold at the end of the rainbow has yet to be found.
I’ve run out of patience.

You can’t change the rules mid-play.

Certain things are not done in polite society,this being one of them.

I am now crying Foul.

You will find my Life enclosed in the near-empty grape jelly jar I’ve sent with this letter.

Contents may settle under pressure. Regardless of weight you are getting back exactly what you have given me, nothing.

Actually,if you look at it logically,you are getting more than you’ve given me, you, at the very least, are getting an almost empty jelly jar.

There is no disputing this claim.

Be aware that I am prepared to take this to the Supreme Court if need be.

I believe my rights are covered under the Commerce Clause (Article I, Section 8,Clause 3).

If it makes you feel better, nobody really understands what the Commerce Clause actually means.
But I still want my money back.

Any cost associated with this transaction will be paid for by the Federal Government.

I’m entitled.

Regards,

The Girl Formally Known As Me



et cetera