Saturday, December 11, 2010

Life Gets Funnier

Last week was our 12th wedding anniversary. Anyone who has been married this long with children knows what an accomplishment this is. Especially for me, since this is how long I have been a step mother. I have been feeling sorely disconnected from my spouse for some time, as he isn't much of an expresser of emotion. I feel like I am constantly doing my "WOW" dance around him (you know the one- where you show all your superhuman capabilities, day after day after day, hoping for your spouse your gush with love for you)  but sadly finding that his blackberry gets way more attention than I do. So, in this lull of passion in my marriage, I have concluded that I LOVE my family so much that no matter what, I will stick it out. My mom says in response to this epiphany, "you should get bangs. It will save your marriage".  So I make an appointment and get my hair cut. I also come out into the living room on the morning of our anniversary, wearing my wedding gown.

I say, hey, if you can't wear your wedding gown on your anniversary, then when can you wear it?

The dress won't zip past my waist. It seems my bust and ribcage have increased in size since my wedding day. Could it be that my heart has grown two sizes larger?  Tom asks, "did the dress shrink?", no, I'm pretty sure it was those kids, all four of them, that helped my heart grow.

I pretty up my new hair and go back to the wedding attire to collect the veil. Hey, if you can't wear the dress, you can always wear the veil on your anniversary.

Then, I ask Tom if he will be seen with me wearing my veil all day. He says "sure".

The little kids are in a Christmas play, The Best Christmas Pageant Ever, playing Saturday and Sunday, 2PM and 7PM at the Santa Barbara Community Church next weekend, December 18 and 19. Aidan has his first speaking role. I have been setting him up for one of his lines by playing the character, Mrs. McCarthy. Out of the blue, Thursday morning, the director e-mails me saying that the actress playing Mrs. McCarthy had to drop out due to a family emergency and would I like to read for the role. I am not kidding. ME. I haven't officially acted since High school, although, I did work in pharmaceutical sales for nine years, which requires a bit of acting ability. I read for the part, and found out late last night that he wants me to take it. I am nervous about memorizing cues and lines, so I decided to write them all on my arm in sharpie.

I figure, I'm an adult now. I can manage myself however I want. So, if you would like to experience a bit of my funny life, come see my adult stage debut. I might just wear my veil.

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Message From The Yeti

I joined my daughter and her fellow fifth graders at the Catalina Island Marine Institute last month. I learned a lot of things, some of which I already knew. I learned that in a full wetsuit with hood and booties, I resemble a blue yeti. I learned that it takes 200 years for a plastic water bottle to biodegrade when exposed to sunlight.  They should print that on the packaging.  A Ziploc baggie, takes half as long. I have waged a war on plastic this year. I hate it. It is a sign of our genius and our demise.  I have been getting all sorts of clues lately that we, as humans, are faced with the challenge of harnessing our own intelligence. We are too smart for our own good. Until we learn to tone it down a bit, behaving more like animals, we are doomed. DOOMED (to live in and amongst an ocean of saran wrap, Ziplocs, packaging and stupidity).

When I was in Panama last month, as we swam in the warm waters with the whales, we encountered some alarming patches of ocean that were laden with bits and pieces of trash, mostly plastic. The funny thing was, when I swept up a bunch of pieces, I noticed that on every available surface, barnacles had made the floating plastic their home.  I think that is where the ironic part of the story is. The animals on the planet will cope, adapt and evolve. It is us who will be saddened and disgusted by the state of our surroundings. We will not want to swim in the filthy water, the insult of someone else's carelessness. We will not want to live like humans, too smart and too dumb at the same time. 

The yeti says, be more connected to the earth and the nature kingdom today. Abandon your foolish human ways. Think "what comes from the Earth goes back to the Earth" and try to live closely to that idea. We are smart enough to evolve on our own. We do not need a disaster to force our change. We don't even need threats and doom to force us with fear. We just need to use our wit but remain part of nature, as the childlike part of us knows how to do. Yeti sez: go play in water, or soil, or play in both - make mud.

Saturday, October 30, 2010

Live Like This

My birthday led me to Panama, via Huston International Airport, where I had 16 minutes to run from my LA arrival gate to to my Panama departure gate, which was in another terminal. Glowing with sweat, I breathed a sigh and thanked my body for being strong enough to do this kind of thing when I asked it to.

Before I knew it, I was united in Panama with a "family" I had yet to meet. There were twelve of us. We were all drawn to the promise of whales and dolphins.

It was a bit surreal, having said yes to this adventure, then knowing that what I needed most was just to float, literally and figuratively. I just went with the flow, no matter what the situation.  I didn't speak a lot, spending more time just feeling and being. This is definitely the way I want to live, saying YES to adventures that speak to my soul the way this one did. It was everything I hoped it would be.

Saturday, September 25, 2010

Bigger Than Me

Today is my 42nd birthday. I am up early to head off to a spiritual adventure in Panama. I got a little panicked last week looking at pics of breeching humpbacks in some dark blue water. I remembered I get seasick and vomit when I ride on boats. Then it came to me, this is bigger than me. This trip was an ache that came to me as another whale dream the night before the trip e-mail ever showed up. It became a symbol of the life I want to live, in a state of loving service, heavily seasoned with artistic expression and adventure.

I even got a confirmation sighting.
That's a humpback feeding off Hendry's beach. It looked like a giant cucumber, just sitting there in the water.

I'll let you know what comes up. I am hoping to get some clarity about my life so far and where I'll be headed in the future.

Thanks for reading!

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

I never spoke of Rome

If I had to sum up Rome in August 2010, it would be "beautiful, clean, clear, icy cold fountains, art, ancient architecture, spaghetti alla carbonara, walking, gelato and Marcel, the puppeteer". The apartment Tom rented for our stay was a PALACE. It was ON Piazza Navona and was bigger than our house. We had an official tour of the Colloseum, the Forum and an unofficial, self-guided tour of the Vatican and Sistine Chapel. We ate the BEST gelato in Rome. The girls went to a bar together and legally drank shots of aqua vita or some awful liquor (which couldn't happen here for two and a half more years). All in all, HEAVEN. 

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Tuscany to Rome

We spent a glorious week in the warm caress of Tuscany. The smell of hot grass soothed my soul as I walked with pans of food to the house the kids stayed in. It was seven days of slow moments that ultimately went by too fast.

We spent one day driving to and from Florence

Taking the advice of some Swedish visitors, we visited some beautiful thermal hot springs.

Warm, but not too hot, it was the perfect balm for whatever "ailed" us.

We visited a volcanic lake and some other hilltop towns, eating pici with pecorino and pepper.

Before we knew it, our warm Tuscan adventure was over and we were off to a palace in Rome.