The Air Here is Restless

Leave a comment
Me / Time and Space

Over the course of my life I’ve lived in a few different parts of the country, and in these parts of the country I’ve found several places that have become “mine.” No, I didn’t purchase any land or adopt a highway or what have you. I just mean that there are places that start to feel alive in and of themselves after you’ve visited them a few times – equipped with their own personalities and voices.

Certain places speak more than others. Some have older souls than others. Sometimes it feels like you’re discovering somewhere that no one’s ever been before, and sometimes though it is more than obvious that several hundred thousand people or more have traversed these very grounds before you, you still feel new in your own two feet (even if you’re not on the ground upon which you tread). All of these places have stories to tell – some stories were written by the people who found them, some stories were written by the history of the land itself, and some came to be as time kept and keeps moving forward.

img_5784

And then there are the places that breathe and bend, dance and break, seek and sleep, and live filled by an ancient vitality that saturates the air and seeps in from the sea. These are the winds that whisper more than ambiguities in the whistling wind, their words are clear and direct without need for interpretation.The land is hard and rocky, tough and relentless – large, layered and smooth, crawling from the sea, prehistoric giants lunge and fall and stay. Halted. Unable to go any further. Piles of broken rock and boulders overlook the shore, they guard the ends of the earth. The land here does not belong to man, it belongs to the earth – you are a guest here, a visitor, and a student.

Only a few hundred yards away from this epic natural wonder lies a giant limestone quarry which is visually breath taking but absolutely lacks the soul of the shore and the sea.img_5642

Adorned in pristine geometry and brilliant saturated hues of every color of in spectrum, it looks like a scene from a storybook – somewhere you would only expect to find in a dream or a fairy tale. It is surrounded by woods, completely hidden from the world, wide open to it at the same time.

Funny how looking at the same ocean from the same spot fifteen years later fills you with a panic instead of excitement…

Halibut Point in Rockport, MA – the air here is restless, and by that I am settled. The first time I came here, I was 19 years old and had just finished up my first year at Berklee. I remember climbing on top of the same rocks, I remember walking around the same quarry, I remember staring out into the sea from the same spot on the rocky shore – noticing for the first time how much more vast and enigmatic the ocean seemed from a point versus a long beach – and I remember feeling like there were endless opportunities and possibilities waiting for me, I had my entire life ahead of me and I was going to make something incredible out of myself. Funny how looking at the same ocean from the same spot fifteen years later fills you with a panic instead of excitement – you can’t help but think how many opportunities you’ve wasted, and how many possibilities died over the last decade and a half, and while you have an awesome family and husband, you still have no fucking clue what you want to do with your life… not so inspiring at 35. But there’s definitely something settling about that chaos – if I can feel something I felt fifteen years ago, why can’t I feel it again in another fifteen years?

img_5673

I guess there are still a few unexplored possibilities out there. We’ll reconvene by the sea on the rocky shore of Halibut Point in another fifteen years.

So Much for the Shack

Leave a comment
Writing

Small, green, hot, stuffy, dusty, primitive, gross. For eleven years this little seemingly ancient shack, apparently a beach house, had been our home away from home when we went to Bethany Beach every summer. This hut did not have air conditioning, electricity or indoor showers. My mother and I hated it, and the only reason we stayed there every summer for so long was because my mother’s sister, my Aunt Bonnie, loved it and we were afraid to tell her how we actually felt about it. So year after year we stayed in the shack, embarrassed to have people over, afraid that anyone who saw us coming out or going into it would think we were paupers – but still, it was just a house and we had a great time with our family in this house year after year. Still, however, we hated that little hut!

waterscapesABC-3

Finally, one spring day my mother got off the phone with a big grin on her face and told us that this summer when we went to the beach we would be staying in a different house, a modernized house, on the same street as the little green shack.

“At last,” I thought, “time for a modern beach week!”

When August rolled around we made the three hour drive to Bethany Beach, this time bringing friends along with us, knowing that any house would be better than the shack. Of course, the new house was a beautiful, contemporary house that we all adored. So thrilled, we threw our bathing suits on and raced down to the shore, and had a great day on the beach.

That night as I was walking back to our new beach house, I passed the shack that we had stayed in during the summer for so many years. I saw a family of four sitting on the dilapidated screened-in front porch with a citronella candle in the middle of their circle. They were laughing, smiling and joyous. It was then that I realized that the shack was not the thing that had been putting a damper on our otherwise exciting beach trips. It was me and my pride, ashamed of the surroundings without taking advantage of the simple gift that the bare house provided – simple, uninterrupted quality time with my family. I had been unable to feel pride in who I was instead of what we had until it was too late. But the new family was having so much fun I could hear them laughing down the street from the new house. They had the attitude that we should have had… but it was too late.

We only came to Bethany Beach as a family one more year after that, once again staying in the new beach house. That final year it just wasn’t the same. Sure, the beach was great, the shopping was tax-free (good ol’ Delaware), and endless mini-golf kept us entertained for hours – but our family didn’t have the same synergy that we had when we only had each other, our stories, and the time to do nothing together.

20170816_153231132_iOS (2)

Ten years later later I came back to our old street at Bethany Beach after my parents had bought a house that was across the street from the beach, on the Bay side. I went to go look at that green shack, just to see if it was still there, and of course, it was gone. In its place was a 3 million dollar brand new beach house, three stories, four car garage, balconies and wrap-around screened-in porches on each floor. Unfortunately, the rest of the neighborhood was still mostly cottages and simple houses so this new mansion on Delaware St. stuck out like a sore thumb and kind of ruined the simple, quaint appeal of the area.

For the first time ever, I wished that the little green shack was still there. That was what the beach had been to us for years, and now it was gone forever.Of course, we’ll make new memories in our beautiful new house, but nothing can quite replace all the summers in the shack with the whole family. Of course, as time moves on people, places and things change with it, but memories stay forever. We have some great memories, we had some great times, but we took what we had for granted.

Now, I can’t even find a picture of that little green shack…

cropped-291f0f16-1826-476d-b2ed-15b3b7fd2b5c.jpeg

Pictures from the Past of the Future, In the Now

Leave a comment
Time and Space

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

A week and a half ago I went up to New England – my old stomping ground from college – revisited some places, visited some new places, did a lot of thinking. It’s funny how time can talk in unexpected moments and keep silent when you’d expect to hear a voice from the past. More on places that I used to go and the heart’s connection to the world to come in the very near future.

… seriously?!

Leave a comment
Movies

So, now that Code Black is freaking awesome, the writing is on par, and everything is just going so well, it’s being canceled. No season 4. Why does every show I love get canceled?! I hate TV! The only saving grace here is that, with 9 episodes left of this third and final season, the writers are aware (and have been unofficially aware) that they have to wrap end the show and they seem to want to go out on a high note. So, at least there’s that.

Meh.

Time is music planets make: It’s Only A Matter of Time Before I’m Schumann (I proliferate my own insanity)

Leave a comment
Me / Music

Alright, here’s a story and an insane spin-off project for you (we’ll call it a labor of love, sounds a bit more respectable than elaborate act of desperation). Here we go.

In 1992 I took ballet at a little studio in Maryland, and at the end of the year we had a recital. Nearly everyone who was born in the 1980s experienced this first-hand at least once in their lives so you’d think that 30 years later tracking down something like the name of one of the pieces of music used wouldn’t be absolutely freaking impossible. After all, it’s the internet age – you can find anyone online. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve successfully tracked someone down from some prehistoric part of my life to ask them something random, I have actually gathered quite a plethora of random information this way, it’s kind of awesome. Well, I have met my match.

This fun little obsession goes back to 1992. I was 9 years old, but I will never forget the music that one of the advanced modern classes performed to in the recital that I was also in. Our music was Tchaikovsky’s Waltz of the Flowers, from The Nutcracker. I remember the choreography (passe, fifth, chassez, arabesque…), I remember that Jenny Bunty, Kathy Delauney, Meri Price and Jessica Stakarowski were in it with me. I remember the white satin dresses with white tulle skirts and an off-the-shoulder fringe (that wasn’t actually supposed to be “off-the-shoulder” but I didn’t let that stop me from repeatedly pulling the fringe off of my shoulders throughout the piece so my costume would look like a “real ballerina” (I was 9, once again, just reminding you). I remember the weird plot of this pseudo classical story that we were telling… the flowers, then the rain, then fire, then the fire captures one remaining flower and is about to burn it to ashes (it’s a pas de trois to music from Tchaikovsky’s Romeo & Juliet) when a magical storm hits and saves the day, blowing out the fire, watering the world and restoring life to the arid world. Or something like that… it was never actually explained to me. But after decades of deliberation, I have settled into this story.

The first time I heard the music for the Misty Winds (this was the name of the dance for this piece, performed by the advanced modern class) it was one of those moments that sets the entire trajectory of your life into directional motion.

I’ll go ahead and say it – I was a weird kid. I’m a weird adult. It’s not a new thing with me, the weirdness. Over the years, I’ve learned to embrace and rock the weird but when I was 9 I didn’t think I was weird, I thought everyone else was just really boring. At that point in time I wasn’t remotely familiar with any popular music with the exception of a few Michael Jackson and Richard Marx songs I heard on Baltimore’s Lite 102 on a nightly basis.

What was I listening to? Well, earlier that very same year Sister Act hit the theatres and I saw it at least 5 times, and I had memorized the soundtrack within a week of its release…

What was I listening to? Well, earlier that very same year Sister Act hit the theatres and I saw it at least 5 times, and I had memorized the soundtrack within a week of its release… and no, I don’t mean the popular songs from the movie (“Just A Touch of Love” C & C Music Factory for example… I know, don’t even, ok? Let’s just move on… I’m old and lame, we know this) – I mean I had memorized the songs that the Sisters performed during Sunday Mass after Mary Clarence (Whoopi Goldberg) assumes directorship of the choir. In fact, that was my favorite song at the time, Salve Regina from the Sister Act Mass scene (yes, this carried definite social consequences that I was never able to completely live-down before high school graduation).

I remember sitting on the floor of the girl’s locker room at the pool with my red Sony tape recorder, listening to that song over and over again as I wrote down the lyrics, all of the parts, the rhythms and as much as I could with the musical knowledge that I had. What was I really doing? I was actually doing my first transcription and arrangement – this project consumed my summer, I spent hours and hours and hours working on it, and no it was never performed or shown to anyone, I loved every single solitary moment of it. I considered this a summer well-spent.

Why do you need to know this? Just trying to paint as an accurate of a picture as I can of how far and deep this goes. Fundamentals, man! Anyhow. I was geeky, I liked geeky music, I was really into my geekiness. Essential.

 

 

The Misty Winds.

I was out in the audience at our first dress rehearsal. This music was absolutely mesmerizing, it was unlike anything I had ever heard before… and it wasn’t Tchaikovsky or anything from any classical piece of anything I could identify. For some reason, I never took it upon myself to look at the freaking program and see who the composer was (once again, I was 9 – a lot of things here are laced with child-induced stupidity) but by the end of the week with all the rehearsals I had committed the entire piece to memory.

Memorizing an instrumental piece is a completely different experience (for me) than memorizing a song with lyrics. With instrumentals, I rely a lot more on my feelings and emotions to keep the melody flowing in the absence of lyrics that create a sort of narrative that aids the memory. Different tonalities and chords and progressions and what have you create different feelings, and so much of the way I experience music is through catharsis, so – in a nutshell – I’ve painted a sort of bio-picture of the music. In all seriousness, I can still hear it in my head as if it were fresh – as if it hasn’t been 25 years since the last time I heard a recording of it. It’s a beautiful piece of music that’s become almost a legend in my head – I have nothing to go by but memory. No title, no composer, no recording label (it sounded like Windham Hill or Narada… so I listened to EVERY SINGLE NARADA AND WINDHAM HILL record that was put out from the time of the labels’ existence through 1992 (which was about a year longer than I needed) – that’s THOUSANDS of fucking records, you have no fucking clue… oh my GOD, and nothing – I got nothing, nothing but that memory. Luckily, that memory has become an entity of its own. I even transcribed the melody for my first semester proficiency exam when I was a sax principal at Berklee. I can’t let it go.

I did try tracking down the woman who owned the ballet studio – you know, the one that was responsible for all of the choreography and the music. I was unsuccessful. Being completely unsuccessful in this day of the whole living on the internet is strange – not that I couldn’t find her, but that I couldn’t find anyone related or any remnant of her. Anywhere. From anywhere. It’s like she vanished off of the face of the earth. Actually, it’s creepier – it’s like she never existed.

 

I’m guessing that was my last possible avenue to go down in an attempt to find that piece of music, but I’ve got a freaking score for an ensemble in my head that’s been there for 25 years. I need to get it out. I need to hear it!! I need to put it out there.

I figure one of three things will happen:

  1. My song goes viral, everyone in the world loves it, I become famous, no one claims it, and it becomes mine. I can do this without feeling guilty because it has been 25 years and there is a possibility that I’ve done some re-composing over the years. I have absolutely nothing to listen to as a guide so anything is possible.
  2. My song goes viral, everyone in the world hears it, I don’t become famous because someone claims it and attempts to sue me for copyright infringement and whatever the hell you want to throw in there BUT I don’t get sued because I got what I’ve always wanted – the name and composer of the freaking piece of music. I can let it go. I’m good with that.
  3. I put it out there, absolutely nothing happens. I’m not surprised – this is the most likely outcome and if I were to believe anything else I’d be a damn fool. But I don’t see that as a reason not to do this. I’ve written tons of music over the years that no one’s listen to, I’ve enjoyed that. It just seems like something I need to do.

So, there you have it. The song that set the insanity in motion. I’ve heard tales of musicians going completely crazy from not being able to stop obsessing over the pitch of a single note for prolonged periods of time. Well, I’ve had this whole damn thing in my head for 25 years now and I do declare I feel a bit batty. I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t looking forward to this.

Stay tuned, this will be fun. And transcendent, maybe.Definitely interesting. Oh yes.

Shrinking

comment 1
Me

img_4659

According to the scale, I’ve lost all of the weight from my second pregnancy. Heh, the reflection has changed a bit… so let’s celebrate the number. Small victories, dammit.

Kindergarten Registration is not for the Weak: How to Make A Terrible First Impression

Leave a comment
Family & Kids

Regardless of anything else that transpired in the process, my daughter is registered for kindergarten in the Fall! Wahoo! Mommy’s getting a very small portion of her life back in a few months – super exciting. Of course, I’m going to have to fight for it – from the very beginning. What else is new?

The kindergarten registration process was not easy. No, it was not easy at all. Nor was it quick. That, however, was typical – something very simple that I had to go about making as difficult as humanly possible. Seriously. All we had to do was walk in there, sign in, wait for a few minutes, meet with someone for less than five minutes, and then head out on our merry way. It could have been so simple and painless.

But it wasn’t.

No, it was not simple and it was not painless. It was insanely complicated, exasperating, painful and it left me feeling like I have no control over anything, defeated and pathetic. Heh, but what doesn’t do that these days? C’est la vie.

In case you were wondering what the most efficient way to make a terrible first impression is, I’ve got some notes that you may want to read. You wouldn’t think that destroying any face that you may have permanently would be so easy to do without any effort, but when you have two kids anything is possible.

Where should we begin? Ok, let’s start at the beginning.

Something that I’ve noticed about myself over the years is that I can be kind volatile in a situation without even opening my mouth. A lot of it has to do with my appearance. Let’s just say, I don’t exactly fit in. Ever. At least, not in every day situations with normal people. The years I spent modeling were kind of awesome for my sense of belonging because I spent most of my time with people who were like I am – but now, I’m a mom and I don’t fit in and it’s frustrating. I’d like to think that it isn’t the giant cannabis leaf that I have tattooed on my left arm, but it probably has a lot to do with that. Right now my hair isn’t aggravating – it’s not normal (it’s short, bleach blonde, asymmetrical and random, but not invasive), but it isn’t insane. My mohawk hat attracts a hell of a lot more attention than my hair does at the moment. But specifics aside, there’s something about my presence that can irk people. I don’t try to come off like this, it just is. I feel like if I could help it, I’d have found a way by this point in my life. So, I embrace it. I can’t say the same for the people that I encounter when I’m out and about doing my day-to-day thing. I used to think I was paranoid… now I just try to do what it is I need to do as quickly and quietly as possible.

Another thing I should mention is that in the last year, I’ve lost about 65 pounds. I put on A LOT of weight when I was pregnant with my son … not just during the pregnancy, but in the six weeks after I put on a solid 20 pounds all on my own from being given the medical “green light” to eat carbs again (I had gestational diabetes with my second pregnancy). The last time I bought new shirts was about 40 pounds ago. Needless to say, they fit me differently now than they did when I bought them. This day, I was wearing a racerback tank top – I love these things, I live in them during the summer, just throw them on over a cami or a bralette or something that actually covers what’s under it, and you’re good to go. What should you not wear them over? Regular bras – bras that are blatantly bras, bras that – when showing – alert the surrounding audience with a tone of shame and shock. These are not bras that are meant to be pretty, theses are meant to be functional. Unfortunately, when you’ve dropped a lot of weight since the last time you bought bras, they aren’t as functional as they are meant to be – so what we have here is a lose-lose wardrobe situation. But whatever, we’re just going to be quick. Run in, run out. It will be fine.

Well, as you can imagine, it was not fine. Heh, no it was not at all fine. It was bad. I ended up getting us there 15 minutes before the end of registration because for some reason I am absolutely incapable of getting myself and the kids anywhere remotely on-time… I was shooting for an hour before the end of registration… the school is only 3 freaking miles away… I don’t know what the hell happened.

 
It was probably a combination of having to talk my daughter out of wearing a goddamn costume, chasing my son around, waiting a half hour for my daughter to find matching shoes, chasing my son around, waiting to an hour for my daughter to finish eating, chasing my son around, waiting 15 minutes for my daughter to decide she needs to use the potty and perhaps, chasing my son around. And, of course, it’s 90 freaking degrees outside. I don’t do 90 degrees well, and I really don’t do 90 degrees well when it pops up after a two week bought of unseasonably cold weather. Nothing good happens when it’s 90 degrees outside. So, we get there… we’re tired, we’re sweating, we’re hungry. We’re half naked… mommy should have worn a tank top under this one, but she was sure of it when the boy proceeded to pull her shirt 75% of the way off within 30 seconds of walking into the school.

 

 

The set-up I’m greeted with is the dreaded circle – sign in at the table in the middle, then have a seat somewhere in this circle of chairs that are setup around the perimeter of the entrance hallway. And wait. My dumb ass did not anticipate the waiting. I don’t know why. But when I made the decision to feed my son after we got back from registration, I did not anticipate the waiting. When I told my daughter to hurry up and throw some socks and shoes on so we could go, I did not anticipate the waiting. When I didn’t grab anything to eat or drink to bring with us on my way out the door – even though the little voice in my head was SCREAMING AT ME – I did not anticipate the waiting. Once again, I do not know why.

Waiting with a feisty, hungry, tired and insane one year old is an ordeal no matter how you go about it. I thought that I was going to be surrounded by a sort of universal sympathy – after all, it was a school, everyone there has kids = but no, it was not sympathetic, it was judgmental and I felt inferior – heh, at least it was a familiar situation. No, I don’t have any control over my kids – I’m sorry I’m not as perfect as you are, but I live in the real world.

I had to decide what would be less disruptive – letting my son shriek as he was confined to either my arms or a stroller, or letting him run free and having to chase him down every 10 seconds like he was an escaped convict on the freaking lamb. Option B, unfortunately, also involved bouts of shrieking every time I caught him and turned him around so he was running back in the direction that we came from.

This elementary school was not toddler friendly. I don’t know why I was expecting it to be more or less. I really don’t know what I was expecting, but apparently any inkling of an image I had in my head about what I was walking into was just 100% wrong. I think that’s from going to private school for thirteen years – my memories of school functions aren’t exactly normal. Or universal. They are actually kind of insane, and definitely esoteric. I was not in the presence of any of the chosen few or their descendants – that’s one thing I can always appreciate about the private school alumnae factor, it’s very tangible – weirdly tangible… you can definitely feel it. But heh, it was not here – not here, not today. I was on my own.

After what seemed like an eternity – in reality it was probably about 15 minutes (and in those few minutes, my son managed to crash into a display in the hallway, draw all over the hallway and walls – literally, almost escape completely down a long hallway that we weren’t supposed to be in, and he pulled my shirt off twice… oh, the stares… damn, those eyes burn) – we were finally called into the office to do this thing! My daughter was an angel, she was very polite, she was brilliant and she definitely showed the powers that be that she is ready to go to kindergarten. My son managed to pull my shirt off again, and draw all over the desk with a violet crayon… I don’t know how he got the violet crayon, it wasn’t the same crayon that I took away from him in the hallway (no, I don’t know how he got that one either). Our registration was very smooth, that was due to my husband putting all of the documents and paperwork that we could possibly need into an organized folder making me appear to be much more organized than I actually am – I couldn’t take credit. My husband made a fantastic impression. Typical. At least one of us looks good. I probably would have come off better had I not been there as well.

I don’t even want to talk about the ordeal in the parking lot. That is another story for another day. Kids are weird. Fucking crazy, man. And so are we for having them. But at least we got through this one. Barely.

 

Insane.

Eww

Leave a comment
Family & Kids

I was super excited when my 4 year old woke up dry this morning, if for no other reason but the idea of getting to take a day off from doing laundry. Wahoo!

Unfortunately, the cat decided to throw up on her sheets about 30 seconds after she got out of bed.

Seriously?

I can’t win.

 

Hello 35…

Leave a comment
Me / Time and Space

Hello 35 – we meet at last. I always knew this would come, and now that it has I am kind of… bummed. I feel like it’s not possible – it’s too early for me to be thirty-five, it is just too freaking soon. Way too freaking soon.

Yes, thirty five years is thirty five years – it doesn’t come later or any earlier for different people. And no, it’s not a villain who is coming for you… but damn, it sure does feel that way. Thirty five was always the random age I’d throw out if I was talking about events far in the future. It always seemed so “middle aged” and I was, and have always been, young dammit!

Heh, that isn’t at all true… I’ve been feeling a lot older than my years these days. Especially since the boy was born. He’s fucking crazy. Anyhoo… happy birthday to me, I’m thirty-five today. The rain has been torrential on this gloomy, cold morning. Until about three years ago, I always had a beautiful birthday – it was inevitable. Not so much anymore.

IMG_4379

I live in a suburb of Baltimore, so every year now on my birthday I get to hear all about however many years it has been since Freddie Grey and the Baltimore unrest and the riots… heh, happy 32nd birthday, Katie. My 33rd wasn’t any better – I was pregnant. I found out two days before my birthday… I was already 4 and a half months along. I was also pregnant on my 30th birthday – heh, still haven’t encountered a birthday situation that is quite as depressing as turning 30 while pregnant.When I was 18, my car key broke off in the ignition of my car when I turned it on so I spent a large chunk of the day waiting for AAA – yeah, that one was special… almost as special as my 17th birthday when my boyfriend (whom I was planning on breaking up with like… that night) threw me a surprise party on my anticipated “way out,” so instead of breaking up before prom, we broke up after prom (on my actual seventeenth birthday) in my driveway at 4:00am after a night filled with weird tension and understated animosity. On my sixteenth birthday, I found out that I didn’t make the dance troupe I had spent the entire scholastic year preparing to audition for and was all but guaranteed to make it – heh, coulda used that guarantee. Hmm… apparently, I’ve had some pretty crappy birthdays. Oh, let’s not forget about my twenty-sixth birthday when my freaking car got repossessed… not like I didn’t see it coming, but of all possible days!


I am sure there have been some great birthdays, too, but to be honest I really don’t remember any of them. It’s not that I try to remember the crappy ones, it’s that the non-eventful ones don’t stick in my head so if nothing stuck, it’s probably a good thing. And it was probably a very nice birthday. But other than the crappy tragic ones, the one that really stands out to me is my 31st birthday.

Earlier in the day, we took our daughter (who was 8 months old at the time) to the Aquarium. After that, the three of us went out to dinner. After dinner, we went home, put the baby to sleep and smoked a blunt in the car (no, not driving around, just in the driveway), watched a movie and went to sleep. That was the last relaxing birthday.

My 32nd birthday was the Freddie Grey riot day. I was pregnant on my 33rd birthday, ahh… ok, on my 34th birthday I was in a very strange place. It was a mixture of post-partum hormones still hardcore messing with me (heh, they still do from time to time, I think, but nothing like this), feeling weird about my role in my own family, feeling distant and disconnected from my husband, dealing with a toddler who was starting to act out due to jealousy from the new baby, and… of course… there was the new baby. All I wanted to do was watch one of my all time favorite movies, Meet Joe Black, with my husband. We finally got Meet Joe Black started around 9:00 and my husband was deep sawing logs in dreamland by 10… the movie wasn’t over until 12:00. I usually cry for the last hour of Meet Joe Black, last year I cried for two. I still can’t figure out why that was just so sad for me – I don’t like to go back to that place if I can avoid it, it was not good, not good at all – but my heart hurt like hell that night. They did get me a kick-ass globe, though.

This year, I’m trying to have a better attitude and a lighter burden of expectations. It’s almost 6:00am, I haven’t been to bed yet but I’m going to after I finish this. Earlier I watched The Florida Project (damn good movie, more on that to come), and since then I’ve been listening to music, rain and writing. So far, not bad. Not bad at all.

I think the plans for the day involve a morning alone while my husband takes the kids out for an adventure/get mommy a birthday present outing so I can watch Meet Joe Black without interruption, during the day. It’s definitely a daytime movie… I don’t know why that is, and you’d think it would be the other way around, but no, day movie. I think there are plans to go out to dinner at some point, and I would like to spend some time alone with my husband before he falls asleep and before the evening (heh, you never know how bedtime with the kids is going to go – I can’t even begin to count how many times an evening with amazing potential was DESTROYED by shitty bedtimes… it’s a touchy subject, it can go horribly wrong in an instant, and it can really wreck your night. And consequently, the next morning), I would like to grab a shower (I can do that while the family is out… heh, I need to start the movie before they leave or else the last hour is going to get ruined… that’s what always happens, which is why this movie is a once-a-year deal), I would like to do some writing at some point, and I want to watch a movie with my man… and it’s probably a bit greedy of me to want this too, but I wanna get some, dammit. I was going to try to smoke 35 bowls for my 35th birthday, but heh… yeah, that wouldn’t really be conducive to anything actually happening. Ever again. But this will be good… I just need to go to fucking sleep so I can wake up and have a happy fun day! Heh… I’m definitely taking a significantly more mellow approach to my 35th birthday than I have in the past. It will be good.

I’m trying not to worry too much about things going how I want them to in my head, about controlling the mood and vibe all the time, and about letting people’s emotions mess with mine so much. I need to learn to enjoy my life in and of itself and not rely on the people around me to make it enjoyable for me. I really do enjoy time to myself, anyone who has ever met me will tell you that – but I really enjoy time with my family also. And with my husband. I don’t get enough time with him… we’re down to less than an hour after the kids go to sleep at best, but it won’t always be like this. I’ll settle… I’m getting there. We’re getting there. It’s going to be okay…… I wandered off there, I apologize.

It’s my birthday. I’m 35. Fucking 35. Ahh, but more on that later. For now, I’m going to enjoy the rest of this beautiful quiet morning to myself, get some sleep, and rock out my 35th birthday. Love style. Or something. We shall see.

ADDENDUM: Apparently first I will deal with the crying baby, then sleep. It’s freaking uncanny… if a thought even goes through my head that involves me relaxing or enjoying myself in any way, shape or form, he’s gotta start crying. He has to, it’s just got to be this way. Fuck!