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today i saw is a charming blog where jill sees something, draws it on a post card and then mails it off to someone random.

i’d want to receive a drawing from her. it’s really a lovely, beautiful exercise to see the beauty in the ordinary. i could draw the awesome blue cheese/cream cheese spread i made last night.

or i might draw my straw african basket filled with weekend retreat goodies- a bright green blanket, flashlight, gray snow pants, stocking hat with buttons, mittens, no. 9s, remember journal, sexing the cherry, rice crackers, stabilo pen

or i could draw what i saw yesterday. a three-year old being picked up by a cps worker because her mother can’t stand being in treatment. because she is overwhelmed by motherhood. because she wants more methadone pills.

i could send that but i may be seen as sadistic. or maybe i’d get a $25 support a child check. or maybe somebody will pay for burn-out therapy.

or maybe i will send it to d and k. who are working on becoming foster parents. and they’re really lovely people. and i’d say thank you for providing a home because it is badly needed.

i need to be off to process “iron jawed angels.” and talk about heroism. and then explain who is a reference to drug addicts and assign them to find 2 people to use as references for job resumes and housing applications. which is much harder than it sounds.

i also need to post part II of the h chronicles: hope.

ironic.

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HOME:
my view of where my home is constantly
shifting. it may be a physical place but that seems relevant if you’ve lived in the same house for 20 years or moved back to the town you grew up in or you have a husband and children to have dinner with every night

but i don’t fall under any of those categories. i still call henderson home because that’s where my family is. i love the farm. i love the quiet; the waves of green in the summer; the fall harvest. and i love my family {and miss them greatly}.

but i don’t live there anymore. my bedroom is now an office and i sleep in the guest room. home, then in this case, is a remembrance of a childhood. of loving parents. a piece of my heart is (and always will be) there.

my home address now is seattle and has been for three years. sometimes my heart is here but my heart is in scattered bits around the world. my heart also has a bad case of wanderlust. so can ‘home’ be many places?

which brings me to the thought that perhaps home is an experience. an experience of being able to walk into a house, put on a pair of comfy pants and curl up in bed. and be safe from the outside world. a place to find rest. a place of shelter. so home becomes people, places, foods- things that comfort us

saturday night was an act of coming home. i spent the day preparing a meal for 2 friends i have memories with in the swiss alps. and on a cold rainy evening there was no question to what i would prepare: soup and bread. because that is the meal congruent to our past of many meals shared. a simple meal- imperative when you are surrounding yourself with people who are a refuge. tasty yet not distracting of what is most important.

the combination lingers in your mouth, and soul, for days.

(tricia at “eating is art” has an amazing post about coming home here)

two packages were laying in front of my door when i returned from work.

and they’re from the two people who i wanted them to be from. the other parts of the holy triangle (excuse the sacrilege). both of whom i’ve never deleted an email or thrown a letter away from. even though i never go back to reread, it’s the only tangible thing i have of them and ridding myself of them

would wound my soul. and i like knowing i have little pieces of their lives, their words tucked between books.

so on a day i wished and prayed they would be waiting for me at home to stroke my head or soak up my tears, they silently responded and sent

  • mennonite in a little black dress by rhoda janzen (did you know i’m mennonite?)
  • remember a seasonal record by my favorite artist nikki mcclure. i was drooling over it the other day.
  • “theology” by sinead o’connor – i’m listening to “if you had a vineyard” which was strongly recommended.

and now there is a little sunshine in my heart. and awe. not out of surprise but out of reality that even though thousands of miles separate us,

there is synchronicity beyond comprehension.

1. go to goodwill. 2. buy a stack of plates. 3. go to remote place. 4. smash the plates. scream while you smash. if you’re lucky enough to have a wall to smash them against, lucky you.

i recommend abandoned parking lots near the beach.  where the waves are crashing so loud you feel more liberated to scream until you turn purple, letting IT all out.  ALL of it. needs to come OUT. all of the frustration. all of the angst. all of whatever is pent up.  and better than the two handed smack down, is the one handed smash where the plate hits rim first. more effective, i speak from first-hand experience.

sometimes when i’m eating and people are saying things that are

ridiculous

or absurd, i think about how wonderful it would be to pick up my plate and throw it like a frisbee at the wall above their head. and i drown out what is being said because the only thing i can hear, ringing in my ears,

is the sound of shattering glass.  and my, is it satisfying.

but sometimes you can’t make it to the goodwill in time and you have to take a glass from the drinking cupboard and throw it across the room

because sometimes sanity can only come after satisfying sound of shattering glass.

alice paul: quaker, jersey farm girl born in 1885.  her vision: ordinary men and women treated equal in society.  she came from a family who saw her deserving this equality and supported her higher education (b.a. in biology, m.a. in sociology) and venture to study social work in england. it was there that she traded in her status as peaceful suffragist to militant suffragist, when she met emmeline pankhurst,

a suffragist who believed that prayers, petitions and patience were not enough so she led a group of women (including her daughters) to set fires, break windows and go on hunger strikes in order to raise awareness that women needed an equal voice. and then alice returned to america, to work on her phd in economics

but she took her “training” from england and joined the National American Women’s Suffragist Association.  and by deeds not words, fought against the American government. with lucy burns and inez millholland. they held a parade during woodrow wilson’s inauguration in which the police stood by as they were assaulted, verbally and physically. but people took note.

inez milholland: the opening of the parade

refusing to see wilson and the democratic party as allies, paul broke away from NAWSA and formed the National Women’s Party.  and used the tactics up her sleeve.  beginning with picketing the white house. continuing in all-weather and refusing to back down when WWI began. she even dared to call the president

the final picket message

Kaiser Wilson. of course, this led to an arrest…

their charge: obstructing traffic

their penalty: occoquan workhouse prison

their tactic: hunger strike, which leaked to the press and demanded they be released.

and yes, people paid attention to the issue at hand. which went to congress and the amendment in which all women could vote passed because a senator, at the last-minute, received a telegram from his mother urging him to “be a good boy and do the right thing.”

“in oranges and women courage is often mistaken for insanity.” one of the best lines from the movie iron jawed angels.  i love showing it to the girls…its part of what i catergorize under “sheree skills.”  i show it because it is so inspiring. i show it because we need to be reminded of who has gone before us, who has paved the road we now walk, especially as women.  especially women who have had their voice trampled by domestic violence. they love it.

i never tire of it.