A Thing (The World Will Never Understand)

God said to us: You trust me, don’t you?

Us: Of course! Wholeheartedly!

God: Then why are you holding back that thing?

Us: *look down at our clutching hands* Oh this? Well, uh… We trust you with this, it’s just that… You’re not really asking for it, right? 😅 … Are you?

God: You’re not really trusting me with it, right?  Are you?

Us: Oh, well… I mean, if you really want it… then um… here you go. *Nervously hands over the thing.*

The World: hey guys! How’s it going?

Us: Hey World! *High five* Life’s been great!

The World: That’s cool, that’s cool. Wha-… Where’s the thing?

Us: Cool thing about that! See, God asked for it, so we gave it to him. We’re not sure what he’s doing with it, but we’re sure that it’s gonna be awesome!

The World: Oh! OK, so you’re planning x for the thing?

Us: Well no, not exactly. It’s just that we gave it to God.

The World: Oh I see…so the thing is against your religion?

Us: No, it isn’t that; it’s more of a heart issue that lead to giving God the thing…

The World: Hm. Well good luck with that. *Walks away whistling*

Us: 😞

God: Do you still trust me?

Us: Yes.

God: Then don’t worry; I still have the thing right here and I’m taking good care of it. It’s OK that The World doesn’t understand that; The World never understood me, either.

An Unexpected Journey (When “There” Comes Back Again)

Friendships, just like all of life, ebb and flow; they come and go and the depth, temperature, pressure, atmosphere, pH balance all shift and change. Recently, there has been a great shift in a vast percentage of my friendships, both old and new. This is especially true in the category of my deepest friendships. Some are crumbling, some are drifting, while others are adding strengthening cables or rising from their own tombs.

This latest tide has brought with it an unexpected surge of emotions. Normally, I would say that I handle the changes of things pretty well (not great, but pretty well). I appreciate and cherish the friends and memories of days past without clutching at them, realizing that you truly cannot maintain all relationships with all people and now is a special time as well. I embrace new friendships with a certain amount of boldness and openness, without holding unreasonable expectations or delusions of permanence. And I believe I normally handle my own feelings pretty well too – taking time to grieve and allow myself to feel sorrow, or giving myself little celebrations when appropriate. But this time the change seems to have repercussions that I don’t know how to deal with. I’ve found myself caught in an unexpected storm of feelings that I’m struggling to even identify, let alone properly address. How does one figure out and process feelings that are ten, fifteen, and twenty years old? And how can one navigate the nuances of opening up and building new relationships while trying to fix the rudder behind you? I would have never thought that this would be a problem. I assume it’s only a problem because it’s been so much change all at once. Or maybe it’s just indigestion. It’s probably indigestion.

 

To any of my friends who may be reading this and suspecting that you may be part of it: don’t worry. I want to keep moving forward with you and have no interest in backing down. Writing this is just the process of processing.

Technological Cigarettes

Facebook is the cigarette for the modern man.
It’s just as addictive and just as toxic.
Those who use it frequently don’t REALLY want to be doing so.
But it’s convenient, easy, a chill way to keep your hands busy when you have a quick moment – instead of doing just nothing.
In reality, doing just nothing would be healthier. For that matter, doing nothing would likely be exactly what you need most.

Now if you’ll excuse me, I have to go back to reality and breathe some clean air. No wait. Lemme check my feed first; it’ll just take a second…

Today Sure Showed Me!

In snow heavy, piercing cold weather, I ran. For about forty-five minutes, I ran (actually, I was not running the whole time; I paced myself pretty well.). I wasn’t trying for an exercise; I was looking for two dogs that had gotten loose and wandered into our yard. I never did find the dogs, but I did find out some things about myself.

1)  I can run! I can run way more than I thought I could! Although my cardio system is weak (else I wouldn’t have gotten what Michael called “blood lungs”), I’m in pretty good shape! I can do more than I previously gave myself credit for! This experience reminded me that I want to start to exercise regularly soon and showed me that I can do it!

2) I must have had some crappy boots and gloves as a kid. Between playing in the snow with my toddler and chasing the dogs, I was out in that blizzard for over two hours and got neither wet nor cold. As a kid, wearing three pairs of socks was a given; you knew your fingers and toes (and probably everything in between) were going to be well soaked by the time you came inside.

3) I’m a Nord. In a recent series of texts that I wrote to a friend, I said, “We have the BEST kind of snow falling! I mean, I knew it was supposed to hit this weekend, but I didn’t know what KIND of snow to expect. I don’t love snow or anything, but you know what I do love? Hot chocolate, flopping onto my back into soft powder, the satisfaction of a cold breeze after getting way too warm by dressing into a snowsuit, feeling so durable and impenetrable in the harsh chill, and – my favorite favoritest favorite of all – the satisfaction of taking off my cold, wet clothes and putting on soft, warm, dry jammies. Coincidentally, I usually play the Nord/barbarian in RPGs!” This experience highlighted the accuracy of those texts.

What I Wish More Women Understood (Abortion Support)

Mourning does not necessarily mean regret.

When it comes to women who have chosen abortion, I feel like many are stuck with absolutely no support at all. They’re caught in this limbo of expectations and pressure placed on them by both pro choicers and pro lifers.

The pro life camp seems to think that every woman who has had an abortion MUST feel a sense of loss. A woman who has had an abortion is not likely to confide in someone who is pro life because to the pro lifer, she has committed a heinous crime.

To counter this, the pro choice camp pressures that same woman to be bold about the choice she’s made, and to take no shame in it! This also emits the notion that she is not allowed mourn her loss because there is no loss. Another message put out there is that to mourn means to regret, and you should never regret the choice you’ve made!

If you really do regret your abortion, and you feel terrible for what you’ve done, then know that I’m here for you, to love on you, and to support you. But this post is not exactly for you.

If you really don’t believe you’ve lost a life, and you truly have no tugs on your heartstrings over it, then know that our won’t change our friendship. If you want, I have several close friends that can verify that for you. But in that case, this post is not for you either.

Then there are those in that third, stuck camp. They don’t necessarily regret what they’ve done, or wish they had made a different choice. But they also haven’t been allowed to feel a sense of loss or mourning. There is a remarkable number of women in that camp; women who have carried this wound untreated for years, and so it festers. If you’re in that camp, then this post is for YOU. Know that you can talk to me, cry with me, mourn with me, and I’ll make no assumptions about it.

What I wish more women understood is that it is absolutely OK to mourn. I encourage you to mourn. It’s OK to mourn. And mourning doesn’t mean regretting.

So Life Begins At…?

I learned some things the other day. I strongly encourage everyone to learn new things (or new depths of old things) – especially things that challenge your own perception – as often as they can stand it!

I learned that there is no clear definition for clinical death. Life – and therefore its cessation – is something that is held sacred to nearly all of us (I’m leaving room here for you nihilists and for the psychologically ill), yet is not well defined. We know when something is “alive” or “dead,” but only sort of. I learned that the method used to declare death is up to the discretion of the physician doing the declaring. Someone can be declared dead when their heart stops, but sometimes the heart – and the person in question with it – is revived and this person now has a history of having once been “dead.” Or someone can be declared dead when they’ve stopped emitting brainwaves, but we all know about those “vegetables” who are brain dead, yet still…alive? And there have been quite a few folks who have recovered from brain death:  http://kgov.com/brain-dead   So there you have it: doctors can decide for themselves when to declare death, but it’s still as vague and questionable as ever.

I learned more about pregnancy and fetal development. The heart begins to beat at day 21, which is the third week of pregnancy. By day 30, the mother’s blood is separate from the child’s. In the 8th week, brainwaves can detected and measured, but the prefrontal cortex (which is associated with thought) does not develop until the 24th week.

So here we can see why it is that “life” is so very difficult to define. This gets especially interesting when considering the entity called a “chimera.”

A chimera is two beings – two distinct sets of DNA – existing in a single body. This happens with the merging of fraternal twins. Normally, fraternal twins come into existence when two separate eggs are both fertilized and implant within the womb and two babies are born. But occasionally, two separate eggs are fertilized, but instead of both implanting, they merge together into a single zygote before implantation and only one baby is born. This baby is quite literally its own twin. The clearest visible example of this is the famous cat chimera, Venus.

So let’s play with the notion of souls and chimera; what happens (or what are the implications) in such a state? Is it two souls living in one body? Are the souls blended, just like the body? Was there only one soul to begin with, and that’s why it had to snap back together?

These are complicated questions, indeed. We may never know the answers this side of eternity.

Tastes Like… Teen Spirit

Smells have been long known to be strongly linked to memory. I imagine flavors are similar. For many, the heavy flavor of fried food tastes like the county fair, while a friend of mine insists that soup tastes like poverty. For x, y, and z reason, these are some of my memorable flavors.

Coffee tastes like God and introspection, as do vanilla waffles. Put together, they’re ultimately divine!

That is, unless you pair coffee with bacon – then it makes me think of my great grandmother and her daughters.

Salami and bread tastes like a hot date and Borderlands, as does the smell of sawdust.

Fire grilled toast with butter tastes like camping, while a bagel with butter tastes like the warmth of friendship.

Sloppy Joes will always remind me of meeting my brother’s foster family.

Beef tips taste like something special. Not something special in particular, I just mean that they taste like specialty.

That’s all I can think of right now. What are some of yours?