life lessons

No More Than A Musing

Hi again,

I was driving home the other day, anticipating the delight of throwing on my comfort clothes. More than all of the pret-a-porter fashion that I purchased when I was working, my deepest affection and connection is to my flannel pants and a ‘Davidson’ sweatshirt. Large sizes are not necessarily my most flattering, but they are, without a doubt, my most soothing.

When I was in college, my comfort clothes included a torn football jersey that my boyfriend (at the time) wore…in fact that was a big thing for awhile – wearing the shirts and jerseys of guys who were taller, bigger, etc…I lived in that jersey, wearing it and washing it until it was as soft as satin. Yeah, you could say it was a weird badge of some sort; for me it was a hug. Much like my outfit is as I write this at 6:00 in the morning.

I have reached a point in my life where comfort has usurped style in the pecking order of fashion, No more heels (and those of you who knew me back in the day, remember me wearing them at every opportunity – anything to reach 5’2”). No more outfits tailored to perfection. Nope – I look more like one of Oz’s munchkins in Scarecrow-sized clothes. Don’t get me wrong – my retirement style has not devolved to the point of pity. Jeans, leggings, Vans…it works for now.

But what I crave are comfort clothes, much like I crave coffee in the morning. And there’s a reason why, of course. I watch the news and I toggle between fury and fear and heartache – so much heartache. I find myself on a trek in a medical wasteland, where tests require more tests – a medical Matroshka doll, with few doctors that seem to give a damn now that Medicare has kicked in and private insurance has been kicked out (a post for another day perhaps).

And so I stand before you – a little person in overly capacious attire, looking a bit clownish, if not extremely comfortable. I have a feeling that you identify with this need for solace. I want to house every fleeing Ukrainian family, I want to cook for the displaced, I want to heal every person struggling through these times of frailty and horror, I want to propel us to some gentler moment. Big wants, big clothes. And so, I sign off for now – sending you love and hugs. Oh, and if you want some good resources for baggy comfort clothes, let me know.

anxiety, friendship, inspiration, life lessons, love, mindfulness, Uncategorized

How The Heart Heals

“And thus the heart will break, yet brokenly live on” — George Gordon Byron

I struggle to describe this week.  All of the adjectives in my  mind seem to collide with one another in a frenetic game of bumper cars.  Contrasting realities – awful, horrific, mind-numbing, tragic, senseless, obscene, heartbreaking; life-affirming, connectedness, heroic, powerful, humbling, breathtaking, faithful.

Some people don’t do well with lots of stimuli – I’m one of them.  It’s why I hate the mall.  Too much going on that is competing for my attention and focus.  This week makes a trip to the mall look positively mundane.

I was in the city on 9/11;  in the Sears Tower (as it was called then – now the Willis Tower) two days later and flew to the Library Tower in LA thereafter.  My mom thought the firm was asking too much and was a wreck while I was gone.  I really think that had she known who to call, she would have dialed immediately and railed against anyone who had arrived at this decision.  Other than that, the trips were all about being there and not being rattled, reassuring those who needed it and confirming our collective strategy for responding to this serendipitous element of the new normal.

Of course, as this week shows there is no strategy for these traumatic reminders of the new normal.  The new normal wrenches us out of our skin, changes the rhythm of the day into a monotone dirge that quietly plays on an endless loop. Daily stressors are too much to bear, everything that is routine is somehow, not.  I found myself in tears for no reason (when of course there were all the reasons in the world), sitting with my body wrapped around itself, trying to contain this inexplicable sorrow, covering my mouth so the screams would remain silent while they vibrated through my body.  Did I even hear the birds engaged in their gossipy conversation over these past few days?  I don’t think so.

The collective release of tension in Boston last night infused my soul with light (and the hearts of many I am sure).  To see such joy and gratitude after these incomprehensibly tragic days returns my heart to baseline.  The treadmill begins to slow, the incline is less arduous.  The music changes – not necessarily exuberant, though hopeful.  And when I walked the Sirs this morning, I heard the birds engaged in a rockin’ game of Marco Polo.  And with a heart that is bruised, perhaps even broken, we return to our lives.