January Babe Musings (Nailing Home A Few Truths)

The head teacher at work took notice and commented, “ You seem to have lost a little weight.” In the past, I would have responded, “That’s great! Thank you.” or, “Oh, I’m so happy to hear that.” But this time my curt reply could only be, “I see.” What was I supposed to say? And what was there to celebrate about? That I have lost weight because of grief?

Angelica Huston once said, “There will be times in your life when you feel so all alone. Utterly alone.” More than ever, I know what she was talking about. It’s that feeling when nobody seems to understand what’s going on inside you. Afflictions of the soul aren’t meant to be shared, are they?

Certain heartaches are bound never to heal. We simply endure the hurt forever. I completely get that now. The loss that stabbed your heart – which did leave an intense hole within you is the hole that you start carrying everywhere . The one which makes you start thinking how strange it is to walk along familiar places that suddenly become so unfamiliar. A hole only a measure of hushed loneliness could fill.

The hour when the tenacious dream of life runs the risk of being smashed to pieces. We mistake that peace for death, and we believe we long for our end, when what we long for is sleep and indifference.” – Jorge Luis Borges

Gradually though, a ray of light has begun permeating through the cracks of my broken spirit. That’s some kind of very slender progress. Perhaps.

For almost two months I had no desire to type even a single word on my keyboard. Yet I tried to somehow. This time I would like to thank certain people who have provided me some solace during these trying periods. You know who you are. No need to mention names. It’s amazing that even the bloggers I’ve crossed paths for the first time were able to impart good wisdom and deep sensibility to what I’ve been going through. Please know how grateful I am for your comforting words. They’ve been of considerable help – especially in times when I question my need to inform my writing of my pain and stinging convictions.

These days I manage to get on with the business of living; tending to the immediacy of my daily tasks with a bit more normality. I cry less, too. How do I do it? By merely putting my one foot in front of the other. It reminds me of an Oprah episode with Maria Shriver Kennedy – who had been inconsolable after losing her cousin John F. Kennedy Jr. in a plane crash – affirming: “You have no choice but to go on.”

If other people are able to do that, so can I. As if I had another option. And yes, I try to push away the memories and mournful thoughts as far away from me as possible. Can’t afford much to lose my moorings for fear that the turmoil predominating within me might not be good for my health. So tough it out I must.

I should be grateful that my job has given me reason to rouse myself in the morning and get out of the house before 8 a.m. Most often, the only time my mind gets a break from it all is when I am holding my whiteboard marker, explaining to half a dozen of my English-deficient students how to use the different verb tense forms in a sentence, or when to come up with a statement using the subjunctive mood. I must have been born to become a teacher. A teacher of this language – to be exact – even if my previous circumstances had prevented me from turning into one. Hmm..

And sometimes, too, I think, this could be what life is all about for me: my beloved son, my job, a few goals left, my writing hopes, and this online/blogging world. I may have missed one or two factors in there. Allowance for an addition or two also probable. Not bad… Baby steps to reclaim my life may be just what I need.

So that ought to be my focus for now – as I also aspire for the bent that will guide me to a light sufficient. That is…while riding it out in this world of the living.

Not bad at all.


October Babe Musings (Setting A Place for the Unexpected Guest)

It’s been a while, yes. I just couldn’t bring myself to sit down and write something in spite of a few notions and bits of sentiments that have been hovering on my mind. Blog reading has eaten into a good deal of my time here instead. But at least, *voila!* I managed to put up a new page enumerating some nuggets of info about yours truly titled “Pocket Facts Tangential to my Existence.” It’s been fun doing it and I hope to add more items to the list as time goes by.

My desire to elevate my proficiency and keep my edges sharp remains strong. I’m actually trying to brush up on my [non-existent] punctuation skill these days. Why haven’t I taken care of that before? But you know, this thing with grammar and vocabulary and idioms is already an interminable struggle for me. How else could I manage to squeeze in punctuation? Oh sometimes I wish I were an English major. (See, I’m even trying to come up with an excuse now. :-))

A lot has taken place this month. My maternal grandmother passed away at the ripe old age of 92. A first death in the family. It had been unexpected, to me at least, as I’ve always thought my mom’s blood relatives would all live up to become centenarians. Durable genes they’ve got I believe. Astonishing.

On another note, my cellphone – where I’d kept the majority of my back-up files: photos, music, and most importantly, tender messages from my son, close pals and uh, former “special” someones (yes I had treasured a few sweet tiny missives; being a sentimental *silly* fool that I am) – got snatched while I was on my way to a 7-11 store a month ago. Absorbed in texting my brother, I forgot I was passing by an unfamiliar territory, which made it so easy for a dyed-blond haired teen-age boy to grab my phone and then race across the busy highway. All I managed was a short shriek. As I was watching him gradually disappear from my sight, it got me thinking woefully of tons and tons of recorded memories that consequently vanished into thin air. Just like that.

A couple of weeks later, my computer suddenly went black and blank which, according to my son, meant it had manifested the “Blue Screen of Death”. Much like a kiss of death?!
Here’s the thing: As my main repository, my computer has got everything, as in all my files; with no more back-up after the cellphone loss. Which means I’ve totally no files left in my possession except for the very few ones I uploaded on FB.
Double->triple Ouch!
I know, I know, it could only be my fault. No need to give me that look.

Oh the-hell-well..

That leads me to my true subject for this post: One of the most compelling lessons I’ve learned in my magazine readings in recent years has been our willingness in life “to set a place for the unexpected guest.” Man, we better make sure not only the chairs are damn sturdy as this certain guest could bring something that either make you jump for joy or bring you down to your knees. And it got me thinking, how come unwelcome guests always outnumber the ones I am willing to greet with open arms? Nothing truly spectacular has happened in my life, so it should follow that nothing earth shattering should take place as well, right? Right?

No denying quite a few of the unexpected guests have brought me pretty swell gifts. Quite several in fact I’m so grateful for them. Come to think of it, would you gladly welcome someone holding a pin that might threaten your bubble? And who wouldn’t want uninterrupted calm in their lives?

When things start to overwhelm, there’s this tendency for me to either fall apart or turn away. Either mode, I have to go look for the light, even if I have to trudge or crawl. I will be letting the sharpest rays of the light pierce through my hand until I feel no more pain. With only a wound to show for it, I’ll begin the process of careful tending so that it may heal soon completely.

This is how I want to feel all the time. Do I envy her.

Even so, I do my best to be happy. I want to be happy. I’ll choose to be happy in spite of whatever circumstance I find myself in. How can I choose not to? Some people wonder if it’s possible. I’m not sure really. I am not hoping to turn myself into some kind of Pollyanna here. I never was in the first place. Though once in a while I’ve got to remind myself; if people who have much less than I do could genuinely be contented, who am I not to adopt the same disposition? Besides, I can really be happy in small ways.

There’s a considerable exception here. That of losing the people very dear to my heart, which reminds me of one dearest person: My father. Each visit to him is like a jolt of reality.. in clear attestation that I’m about to lose him soon. Very soon. I may be ready, or I may be not. Time will tell.

The world of blogging, through my passive participation by reading, is keeping me good company these days. Quite glad about that. It’s been an alternate dimension I can easily hop into at a mere click of a key. Since this blog should mean to serve as a residence for my memories, reflections, convictions, and whatnot, there’s this probability I might have been overthinking things and letting waves of sentimentality wash over me when I wrote this. But then, that’s what this site is here for. I’ve not much desire to come up with world-changing platforms or thundering essays to prove my writing or smarts facility. Neither do I wish to align myself with the consummate bloggers I kind of worship around here. I’m way way way too out of their league, yet. For all I know, even my current “supposed” moderate competence is purely mythical. Is that okay with me? Not really. Each and everyone of us longs to become better and better in our craft. Therefore, I am gunning for hope and effort combined.

More than anything else, I simply want to write my heart out – regardless of cohesion, manner, or my written dexterity in this blog of mine. To be able to merely jot down my every damn thought. Well, almost everything. That would be quite ideal.. for the meantime.

[By the way, how am I doing with my punctuation, hm?]

So, what do I do when the next unexpected guest comes and takes the seat right next to me? I could only hope he’s a very handsome male with lovely dark blue eyes that I’d thoughtfully recognize from out of time..  Boy, would I look straight into those eyes and tell him, “Oh please, do spare me.”

Glad my blog is still here for me, after all.