Wednesday, December 24, 2008

A little joy

1. For a number reasons, it's been a little hard for me to feel the jolly this Christmas season. You may have noticed. This morning though overhearing Cricket play with two cars is a lot of fun:

"I'm a tar!" One hand revs the car he's holding.

"I'm tar too!" The other hand moves the red car excitedly. "Oh, hi!"

"CRASH!" They speed into each other. The red car drives off triumphant. "Pop a loolie!" Cricket calls.

(Translations: Tar = car, loolie = wheelie)
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2. The second reason for a little joy this morning is hot tea and Zingermans ginger cake. I had some last night while wrapping Christmas presents and watching the holiday classic, Coalminer's Daughter. No, I know that isn't a holiday classic, but it was on and easy to have in the background. Plus singing all those old sad country songs slightly fit my mood.

3. Christmas pudding from England. I can't wait to set it ablaze tonight. The roast is cooking already, the potatoes are done, the carrots and parsnips peeled and prepped. The only thing I have to do when we come from the sure-to-be-madness children's mass, is pop the yorkshires into the oven, cook the veg, serve up the meat, and open bottles and bottles of wine. If a Christmas meal like this, complete with pudding and hard sauce, doesn't make a person feel a little joy, I'm quite sure it's a lost cause.

Tuesday, December 23, 2008


It's funny how we keep patterns, even when we think we are beyond them. It's as if our life were a really finely crocheted afghan or superbly knit blanket. The patterns repeat, even if the weight of the yarn changes or the color. We might think we are doing something different with our lives, but in reality, if we step back, we can see the same pattern repeating itself.

I emailed my dissertation advisor a few weeks ago to finally admit I had not only been to nursing school, but passed my boards and was in the process of looking for a job. It was, more or less, admitting that I wasn't going to finish the dissertation. It was a hard thing to tell someone who gave so much of her time to me and held me with a certain degree of respect. She noted that she'd like to meet for lunch and that she admired my courage to reinvent myself. I want to think that this "reinvention" is different for me, but it's not really. I've been reinventing myself my whole life. Partner recently noted that I like the process of becoming and not so much the "being." For once in my life, I might have been silent in return. The truth of what she said can't be denied. I must like the way it feels to change the yarn, to keep the metaphor going, to note how the new color adds richness, but then I get bored, need a new color.

This makes my life a pretty colorful blanket, which appeals to some but not all. This need to change the color manifests sometimes in not so desirable way for those who love me. I can't help it. The colors are often layered with each other. Some days I look longingly at those whose lives are constant, going in one direction with a single aim. Brother N is like this: I believe he might have known since high school he would go to medical school, and now he is there in his third year. At his age, I believe I might have been starting grad school in English, after being a preschool teacher and having a brief stint with education classes, and spending a brief escape living in London. Brother N also met his fiance in his first year of college and has been with her since. It's lovely-- I can't count how many people I have been with since I was 17.

I know that both ways of being have their pros and cons, but sometimes my need to change, my love for new color of yarn, makes my life seem very disjointed. It makes it hard to appreciate consistency where I have it. Part of my struggle right now seems to be accepting who I am. I might change my path in life, but no one can say I don't go after the change with both hands, with passion, with a desire for what I want. I'll do this with nursing. If I'm going to do this, I'm going to be the best nurse I can be.

The only constant I have ever had in my life of shifting direction is writing. I've been ignoring that and it's time to get back to it. I'm willing to be held to my promise to write more here and elsewhere. Until then I guess I have to take solace in the bright colors of change in a my afghan, and appreciate the warmth that it gives me nonetheless.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Frog Asked...

...if I am ever going to blog again. Here I am. I don't exactly know where to start, but there are 500 things I would blog about if I knew how to start blogging about them or wasn't worried about the fact that the blog is less than anonymous now and once that happens, it seems harder to blog honestly about things happening in one's life.

I suppose the biggest update is the fact that I am an RN now, which ostensibly gives me job security. Maybe that works anywhere else other than Michigan. Because I live in a 100 mile radius of Detroit, everything seems contingent on the auto industry. Hospitals with nursing shortages are in hiring freezes-- which is bad enough, but some have even fired nurses! This makes finding a job that much harder. I have cast my net wide and I feel that soon something will come in, but until that point, I teeter on the brink. I interviewed for one job that I really really really wanted, but didn't get. This is a relatively new phenomena for me-- Not getting the job. I usually have gotten any job I set my heart on, but this one passed me by. And I was counting on it, literally, counting the money, counting the benefits, counting the hours. Now I am back to square one and feeling incredibly depressed about it all. It's not good for me to sit in this house.

Ah, and this house. We are in the tiny house I wanted so badly. But we're renting it. I am supposed to buy the house in four months from now. I can't tell you how apprehensive I am about it. The house is quite small, and definitely has some foibles we wouldn't have known about if we hadn't been living it, but I am still charmed and love living in a small house. My ability to get a home loan might be seriously damaged though with the economy tanking as it is, and even more so here in Michigan.

Like the economy, I also feel a certain amount of depression right now. I am struggling with making some decisions and feel a little vulnerable, but like always I'm quite sure that I will come out of this at some point a stronger person. I took a load of laundry to the basement and just started crying. I felt so angry at that point about the tears. When I was seriously depressed at one point in my life, I promised myself I wouldn't get near that point again, but I feel myself coming close to it. Making a decision, getting a job,-- things like that might help. And maybe even blogging. I can't promise, but perhaps I'll try to start writing again in order to try and stave off these killer winter blues.