Sunday, January 31, 2010

like spinning plates

i really want to thank you for all you have given me. i was very confused for a long time but somehow, the one thing i seemed to always get right was finding wonderful people to know, and to love. some of you are nearby, others are hundreds, thousands of miles away, some even suggest that there are planets between us, but i treasure all of the words you have spoken, all the ideas you have shared, and all the wisdom you have imparted. i am really so honoured to have called you my friends: people who have understood me, and humoured me, and gentled me, and given me a rise, challenged me, and made me change my mind even as i made you think. you have hugged me, and smiled at me, and cuffed me, and enfolded me in punctuation. you have put things in perspective and i will always feel truly blessed for the time spent in your company.



we can't always talk to the people we want to, when we want to. there are a myriad of reasons for this, and if i think back on my life so far, there are a lot of people i have lost that i still miss, and wish i could talk to because sometimes that person is just the right person, the one who will make it all right. i'm not going to try to pretend that i'm good at losing people, or that it's easy to let go even when it's for the best, or that i'm never disappointed when the person i want can't be there. i am trying to accept that no matter hard i try, i will lose some things, some people: it's inevitable. it's difficult to keep people in your life, juggling needs, knowing how hard it all is to balance, but friendship is like spinning plates.

i can remember when my father died, riding the bus home from peterborough, stewing the whole while, needing to talk, standing on the subway platform, knowing i wouldn't make it if i didn't cry my pain right then. and calling my friend debbie, who was the person i wanted most to talk to, and the wash of sheer relief that she was there at the end of the line, and the words could tumble out, to somebody who would understand, and listen. i will never forget that joy in the midst of all that pain; she was simply there when i needed her, and i was safe, in that moment when i wasn't so sure i ever would be again.

yesterday i left a message in the ghost town called myspace, to somebody who almost seems an angel to me, a dream, an egret in flight. she swept in through a bunch of raucous voices, and brought serenity to us all. she was filled with pain herself, and no stranger to loss, yet somehow defied it, and beamed her heart down on us, and i feel so incredibly lucky and privileged to know her. she paved the way to accord because she made us feel loved, and we all loved her, and so learned to love each other. and so i wrote her: partly i just had to let her know it, how much she had given me in the heyday of our friendship, and partly i wanted more. i wanted to know that she was okay: that things had improved for her, that she was thriving and being, and doing. and i wanted to tell her i finally know after all this time that i'm going to be okay, and maybe even better than okay. and i don't know if she'll get the message. i really hope she does, and even if she can't talk to me, for whatever reason, that she knows i love her, and i'm so proud that she's my friend.

and after i left that message, i knew that there were so many people i wanted to tell the same thing, to say thank you to, and so i began writing this. i realized i wanted to let everybody know how grateful i am that i have known them, and have talked to them, laughed with them and learned from them. there's a list of people in my head (i'm not going to name them all out because i'm not accepting an award here), and even though the people who come by this blog because they love me are on it, there's plenty of people in my heart that may never see this. i like to imagine that they might think of me someday while they're sitting at a computer, and perhaps do a search for me, and find the message that i headed this post with, and that they smile because they know i mean them too.

i find myself, as ever, fascinated by people: reaching out to them, old and new, and wanting to hear their voices. an old friend came to visit at christmas, and we curled up on the couch, and had cookies and tea, and the time slipped away too quickly; i emailed another of our old classmates, and had one of the most satisfying conversations i've had in a long time, because his opinion has always mattered to me, has shaped me. time went by, and that was okay until, all of a sudden it wasn't, and i needed to tell him things, and he, me.

how really full in my heart i feel, and the world is a little brighter for me because i know now that some conversations that have lagged aren't necessarily over. there are other voices i really want to hear, and right now they're still, and i wonder if i'll ever hear them again. i hope i will. and if i don't hear them again, at least they know that they were cherished.

Thursday, January 28, 2010


there's a place in my chest where excitement starts: rightly enough, just under my heart. and my heart was heavy for so long, and it smothered that place. and my frissons only amounted to fear, in that throbbing thud centred in the spot where excitement starts. it spread its fingers out my back, the prone area that tingles in response. i can feel its borders even now, so sensitive are they in reception; they know that i am speaking of them.

but somehow everything is new, and training my horse, my body as i have, makes me even more aware of my insides, and now i see that my heart is not so heavy as it was then, or perhaps i have become adept at lifting the profundity of its weight. and now, under my heart, is a spark, that leaps at the prospect of new things, new places, new words, and a new way. i want very much to be, to do, to live. i've never wanted it so much before. i don't have the life i want yet: there is still so much to be decided, and to try, and to face. and people still confuse me, and daunt me, and i wish i understood everything, all that it takes to be a good person and then some; that's the person i want to be.

but the thing is, i've decided i'm here for the duration. that i've got to get myself together, and i can feel myself fighting for it; i can feel hope leaping in my chest. i can do no more than be who i always am, and try. i have seen what comes from not trying.

i'm going to be spirited.