Category Archives: Memories

So Much Life After HS …

I have learned some very valuable lessons in my life – as I hope all have by the time they reach the age of 50.  I didn’t have a good time in high school; I attended two very different schools in those short four years.  The last few years, I find myself back home, close to where I went to high school and so many fellow classmates all still hang out together.  Still.  I have no problem with this until they made an issue with me not attending the school functions, the class reunions, etc.  Some remember those years full of angst or full of joy.  My four years of high school was more full of angst and I have chosen to try to put behind me -especially when many of the same people who made my life unbearable in HS tried to make my life difficult 30 years later.  So shame on them.   And to think many of these people now have children of their own.  I pray for them.  I was shy, sheltered by my immediate family, basically an introvert back then and now I like to think I have graduated to an ambivert.  I tend to only surround myself with calm people these days.  I don’t need to loud, crowd filled moments.  I prefer to look at the photos after an event or party then be the life of the party.  I wish more people would respect that some connections and so-called friendships from a tenuous connection from high schools days do indeed have an expiration date.  I attended my 25th and 30th HS reunions.  It was okay.  I learned I still have very little in common with most people there who showed up.  I tried.  I went.  Now I just want to be left alone by that ‘crowd’.

To me, it seems like some people never leave high school.  They are still jealous, bullies, immature, and many busy trying to relive glory sports days or prom queen days.

After attending the 25th reunion, so many of the same people who tried spreading gossip about me in HS invited me out; I went, I am a forgiving person, chalking all those HS moments to immaturity.  But sitting with these strangers around me, and all talking about things I had no true connection to nor memory of, I realized I still had very little in common with this group of tight knit high school friends.  I tried.  I wanted to know what it would be like to hang out with the HS ‘in-crowd’.  As an adult, being invited to parties I never got invited to while in HS, I thought would vindicate me and erase some of those sad HS moments.  But it didn’t.  If anything some get together’s just exacerbated it.

My curiosities were at an all time high, and I tried to just approach by observing, more like an anthropologist than an active participant.  I was learning a little of what it most of been to be popular in HS.  But curiosity wanes.  People show their true colors, and I was sad – but not for myself, but for them.  So many of these people, left high school, married someone from their local area, and settled in the same area or a place just like our hometown.  I couldn’t truly relate back then nor now.  Most of my friends are people I have met outside of high school.  I have a huge family and am close to my cousins, who will always be my friends, my source of home.  And have been lucky to have traveled and work in many different places, so many of my friends are from shared experiences as adults.

I have been busy trying to put those tough awkward years behind me – only to learn that I am still more awkward than not.  Daily, I battle depression, PTSD, body image issues due to cancer and scars, and have never been the social, bubbly, pretty cheerleader type.  I prefer to get lost in the background, in books, in words, in engaging all my five senses by enjoying wine and food.  I detest dieting and never go to the gym.  I don’t feel the need to look perfect nor do I believe in plastic surgery nor in spending tons of money on wrinkle cream or cellulite cream.   I am happy with myself, by myself.  I don’t need validation from many people, especially those from high school who never had my back then or now, and have never walked in my shoes, Jimmy Choo or not.

I have learned that I didn’t allow those four years of high school to fully define me. I haven’t lived there for a very long time.  I never allowed that HS shadow to linger.  Some feelings did arise whenever I get an invitation and then I write posts like this.  But for the most part, I realize that my HS years were hard but it doesn’t hold much glory days.  I was on the honor society, I had my cousins as my friends, and didn’t need much.  I graduated, moved on.  I don’t have that sense of melancholy from those HS days. I see that those HS years occupy a privileged place for many people.  They reminisce and want to relive their glory days.  Perhaps explains Ralph Keyes’s observation in his 1976 classic, Is There Life After High School?: “Somehow those three or four years can in retrospect feel like 30.”

About the only thing I still deal with since I was a teenager is still learning how to be myself, to not lose control and to continually keep learning.

 

So I wish when I chose to RSVP NO that people from high school could respect that and move forward.  And not feel the need to talk about me behind my back … but sadly, we all know that is not the case.  So I try to remember the saying, “What people say about me behind my back is none of my business.” (RuPaul).  They don’t know me, they can dislike me, well dislike what they think they know of me.  And I will continue being me, living my life, with its ups and downs, but me loving myself each day.

Most importantly, it’s my life, and if something doesn’t serve me, I am learning to let it go.  We have no obligation to someone else. When something upsets you, let it go.  And that includes what other people think of you. If other peoples’ judgement is bringing you down, ignore it.  Try to only hold onto things that make you feel good. Other people can make their choices. They can bitch about you and say nasty things. But don’t forget that you have choices too.  So let’s all try to make better choices.  Shaking off the negativity, moving forward with purpose, and looking forward to all the beautiful, positive things that make me happy … with hope in my heart and grace in my step.

 

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39 More Days

Only 39 days left until Sunday – January 1, 2017!  39!!  I don’t know where the time goes.  Most days, it all seems to pass in a blur … a blur of depression, sadness, hurt, tiredness.  The past two years, I have to admit, has seen me at my most vulnerable in real time and not just via words on my blog.  I have had some heart-to-heart conversations with family and so-called friends who have hurt me or not been there for me in my darkest hours.  I have done a lot of de-cluttering of my life.  I may still be alone, but I am at peace.

I have tried to make each year better but I failed so many times.   I pray that 2017 is it – the biggest year for me yet.  I have been living off the radar, under the bar for so long.  Now I just want to shine bright.  I want to be noticed – I want to be appreciated.

I wish I knew now what I have learned while dealing with the death of so many loved ones back-to-back.  I believe I wouldn’t have lost so many good years due to my mourning.  I put myself in such a dark place, such a sinking hole.

Ironically, I have complained that I had no support system but honestly I realize now how much I cut people out, and how easy immediate family made it for me.  As for new friends, I rarely let new people in my life the past 15 years.  Working hard on trying now.   I need and want people in my life – but worthy, deserving people.  I want to be able to build each other up, not tear each other down.

For so many years, being strong found me pretending to be okay.  I didn’t want to appear weak.  But this pretending came with a very high cost which I am still paying the price.  I shut people out, I lost interest in so many things, I gave up, I let depression and PTSD keep me mired down in grief.  I hid parts of me away.  I would not get really close to anyone.  I kept to myself, isolated.  I didn’t want to be completely vulnerable nor have anyone worry about me.  So today, I have no support system and no one is worried about me.  I guess I ultimately got what I thought I wanted.  Emotional seclusion instead of a complete and utter breakdown is where I have been residing.  And the few times I have let myself be honest, forthcoming, and vulnerable, I have been met with lack of understanding.  So I withdrew even more.

It’s such a cycle.  When a person like me who is already an introvert, keeps everything inside, never fully accepting how messed up I really was, it’s all downhill from there.  I find myself trying so hard to crawl out of the dungeon I found myself in.  Writing has helped me tremendously.  Social media  has helped me as well – I get to be somewhat social without actually investing in friendships too much or sharing true intimacy.   It has provided an outlet – a necessary one.  I need to search and bare my soul.  I need some guidance, acceptance, understanding – even if it at first it appears shallow.  We all need to feel connected.   I’m thankful that social media has brought people back into my life. To me, the past few years have been a rebirth for me – learning how to crawl, walk, talk … all over again.  Now I am more than ready to spread my wings and fly away … with hope in my heart and grace in my step.


One day … See You On The Other Side

Where does the time go?!  Why do some things never get any easier with time?  Why does my heart ache so?  Why does my anxiety level just skyrocket this time of the year? This weekend is so hard already for me.  Was in NYC and every time I heard a siren, I found myself nearly jumping off the sidewalk.  Too much sadness in the world.  So much on the news.  Sunday will mark 15 years since 9/11 terrorist attacks.  My life the past 22 years since my brother died in 1994, followed by my Dad’s passing in 1998 and then my fiance’s death on 9/11/2001- has been a long journey of loss, worry, depression, grief, anxiety, failure and slowly healing.  Each death, each loss, each time – something about my life changed and I lost pieces of myself.

Time does not fully heal all wounds.  I may still be broken, and my heart remains shattered…but it still beats and for that I am grateful.  The past few years of heartbreak and loss have also shown me much compassion and gratitude, and strengthened my faith. Some of my fear has diminished and I have more clarity, focus, determination to live fully for them.  I have found some peace.  Grief doesn’t end for me; doesn’t go away…but it does change.  Times like this weekend stir too many memories – good and bad.  Sadly, so many people believe that my grieving is a sign of weakness – but they are wrong.  Some people believe I lack faith – but they are also wrong.  My grieving after all these years is a testament to the love I shared with these men in my life.  The price I pay each and every minute, of every single day for loving them; for allowing their love to be a part of me.  So I don’t care if people think I am weak or mad.  I have had magic in my life and there is still fire in my will.  My brother, my Dad, Michael, my forever heart – they don’t just cross my mind, every once in a while – they live in it.  Always loved, forever missed.  In laughter and in sorrow, in sunshine and in rain – I know they are watching over me… my very own Angels in Heaven… until we meet again.

Grief is my shadow – following me everywhere I go.  Pain is manageable, dulled by my memories.  Ache is constant, made more hollow with sadness.  But then love and compassion fill me with light and hope.  Sunshine comforts me.   Some days I allow myself to just exist, no pressure and I get through it without guilt. I am able to find peace in moments of time, where I move forward, slowly with grace in my step, hope in my heart and smile through my tears.    Just breathing.

This song gets me each and every time … Ozzy Osbourne – “See You On The Other Side”:

Voices, a thousand, thousand voices
Whispering, the time has passed for choices
Golden days are passing over, yeah

I can’t seem to see you baby
Although my eyes are open wide
But I know I’ll see you once more
When I see you, I’ll see you on the other side
Yes, I’ll see you, I’ll see you on the other side

Leaving, I hate to see you cry
Grieving, I hate to say goodbye
Dust and ash forever, yeah

Though I know we must be parted
As sure as stars are in the sky
I’m gonna see when it comes to glory
And I’ll see you, I’ll see you on the other side
Yes I’ll see you, I’ll see you on the other side

Never thought I’d feel like this
Strange to be alone, yeah
But we’ll be together
Carved in stone, carved in stone, carved in stone

Hold me, hold me tight, I’m falling
Far away. Distant voices calling
I’m so cold. I need you darling, yeah

I was down, but now I’m flying
Straight across the great divide
I know you’re crying, but I’ll stop you crying
When I see you, I see you on the other side
Yes. I’ll see you. See you on the other side
I’m gonna see you. See you on the other side
God knows I’ll see you, see you on the other side, yeah

I’ll see you. See you on the other side
I’m gonna see you. See you on the other side
God knows I’ll see you, see you on the other side, yeah
I wanna see you, yeah, yeah, yeah, see you on the other side
God knows I’ll see you, see you on the other side, yeah
I’m gonna see you. See you on the other side


Echoes of Sorrow …

My heart hurts.  For many years, I have turned down jobs that would have me working back in the Wall Street Financial area of NYC.  I lost the love of my life and friends on 9/11 and couldn’t quite fathom passing the site where the towers and so many lives were destroyed.  

But after 5,321 days – 14 years, 6 months, and 26 days – I find myself working back on Wall Street.  I have to work.  It’s a great opportunity and I am hoping it helps me heal more and keep moving forward.  But today was hard, very hard.  I have been taking a long route to the Path train, avoiding the new WTC Transportation Hub Oculus as much as I can but today I got a little turned around, there is still so much construction near the area – so I found myself on a different side street,  having to pass the Memorial’s teflecting pools.  It took the air out of my lungs.  I couldn’t breathe for a while.  It was beautiful yet so sad.  I didn’t go looking for their names but then I passed one, and then another.  My knees buckled.  And even as I write these words I can’t stop crying. My heart and soul aches.  Chastising myself to grow up, to be strong can’t seem to stop the tears.  I saw a line of people waiting to go into the museum and all I kept thinking is why do people want to gawk at remnants of that fateful day.  I am so confused, so torn, in so much pain.  My thoughts are jumbled, my emotions raw.  I want to scream.  I want everyone to leave.  I want the 2,606 people who perished there to rest in peace.  I am trying to understand.

I am at a crossroads.  All around me are crowds of people, rushing about their day and I find myself glued to the spot where my forever heart’s name is engraved.  I am numb, yet shaking.  I wanted someone to pinch me or drag me away.  I needed to get away.  I could not.

It was all so surreal.  I stopped crying.  I swear the winds spoke to me.  The sun went behind clouds.  And I knew at that precise second, he was there.  Trying to help me.  I felt a calm come over me.  I tried to take photos but seeing them now – all were blurry from my hand shaking.  I can never go back in that direction.  I will never go into the museum.  I will never forget.  But I live the horrors each and every day, I don’t need to see it come alive for me anymore.

I must apologize for the rambling.  I am trying really hard to express myself but I am feeling lost.  My mind muddled like its trying to recall and forget all at the same time. I don’t want to feel so defeated, so lost.

I placed flowers, I prayed, I slowly walked away and then the tears started again.  Leaving yet another piece of my heart there, I boarded the Path with my heart beating so loudly, grace in my step, hope in my heart, tears in my eyes, and a prayer on my lips…missing my forever heart.


Let’s Make A Monument For Our Love …

Heard this song today, and thank goodness for Shazam for helping me find it.  Celebrates life, love, memories, romance … makes my heart happy, my feet move.

There’s a daylight going under
There’s a new spark to discover
And you know we’re not getting any younger
So remember, this is our time

[Chorus]
I wanna drive an open road
Can we go out tonight
Anything goes
Let’s make a monument for our love, our love
Our love, our love
Let’s make a monument for our love, our love
Our love, our love…

There’s a memory around the corner
There’s an angel on our shoulders
To remind us life is far from over
So remember, this is our time

[Chorus]
I wanna drive an open road
Can we go out tonight
Anything goes
Let’s make a monument for our love, our love
Our love, our love
Let’s make a monument for our love, our love
Our love, our love

Every night is ours to own
Everywhere is ours to roam
Every sun is sunshine gold
Everywhere
Let’s make a monument for our love, our love
Another monument for our love, our love

Our love, our love
Let’s make a monument for our love, our love
Make a monument for our love, our love…

Produced By: MUTEMATH

Written By: MUTEMATH


Here Without You

So it’s been a relatively lazy Sunday and this evening has found me online flirting and this one guy reminded me about this song that I love … almost forget how much I love it …  and how much I miss my forever heart …  Ah the power of music!

 

A hundred days have made me older
Since the last time that I saw your pretty face.
A thousand lies have made me colder
And I don’t think I can look at this the same.
All the miles that separate
Disappear now when I’m dreamin’ of your face.

I’m here without you baby
But you’re still on my lonely mind.
I think about you baby and I dream about you all the time.
I’m here without you baby
But you’re still with me in my dreams
And tonight girl, it’s only you and me.

The miles just keep rollin’
As the people leave their way to say hello
I’ve heard this life is overrated
But I hope that it gets better as we go.

I’m here without you baby
But you’re still on my lonely mind.
I think about you baby and I dream about you all the time.
I’m here without you baby
But you’re still with me in my dreams
And tonight, it’s only you and me.

Everything I know, and anywhere I go,
It gets hard but it won’t take away my love.
And when the last one falls, when its all said and done.
It gets hard but it won’t take away my love.

I’m here without you baby
But you’re still on my lonely mind.
I think about you baby and I dream about you all the time.
I’m here without you baby
But you’re still with me in my dreams
And tonight, it’s only you and me.

 


Sad Beautiful Tragic

Sometimes you wake up and memories flood back with little provocation …then this song starts to play, and I listen to the words …yes sometimes words, how little they mean, when you’re a little too late …

Long handwritten note, deep in your pocket
Words, how little they mean, when you’re a little too late
I stood right by the tracks, your face in a locket
Good girls, hopeful they’ll be and long they will wait

We had a beautiful magic love there
What a sad beautiful tragic love affair

In dreams, I meet you in warm conversation
We both wake in lonely beds in different cities
And time, is taking its sweet time erasing you
And you’ve got your demons, and darling they all look like me

‘Cause we had a beautiful magic love there
What a sad beautiful tragic love affair

Distance, timing, breakdown, fighting
Silence, this train runs off its tracks
Kiss me, try to fix it, could you just try to listen?
Hang up, give up, for the life of us we can’t get back

A beautiful magic love there
What a sad beautiful tragic, beautiful tragic, beautiful

What we had, a beautiful magic love there
What a sad beautiful tragic love affair

We had a beautiful magic love there
What a sad beautiful tragic love affair …


Life is fragile…RIP Rodney ♥

Today I received another sad reminder of how short life truly is. Lost another friend today, on this cold, rainy April day. So deeply saddened to hear of my friend, my classmate, my fellow Piscean – Rodney’s passing, for his family’s loss.

My heart is heavy and I am compelled to write, to attempt to unleash some of my feelings, my sadness. But words somehow also seem so hard and inadequate to express the sadness I am feeling. Rodney’s sudden and unexpected death is a painful reminder of how fragile and short life truly is. Try to live in the moment. I have dealt with too much death, passing of loved ones. And it doesn’t get easier; if anything it gets harder. Constant reminders of how mortal we are. Any time there is a tragedy, a sudden unexpected death I am once again reminded that life is so fragile. It also reminds me to focus on the present, to let the hurts and disappointments of the past slip away, and let go of the concerns and fears of the future. Life is way too precious to hold onto regrets, bitterness. Plans, our upcoming June school reunion, now just seem so trivial by comparison. Need to re-evaluate my personal priorities. What becomes more precious is the time spent with loved ones. My friend’s passing is yet another wake-up call to take care of ourselves, emotionally and physically. We need to treasure every moment, take notice of the value of time…time waits for no one.

Rodney’s sudden and unexpected death is a painful reminder of the extreme fragility of life. Rodney was such a strong, vibrant person. I will miss his daily Facebook uplifting quotes and funny posts. As I sit here, staring at the words as I type, attempting to make sense of this profound sadness I am feeling, it grows darker outside the window. Words and sentences, like me, have difficulty breathing in this space. One of the most important things any of us can do now is to try to find some meaning in tragedy, and to honor and offer our gratitude for those who have been taken away from us too early.

Heaven has another angel. Holding tight onto my memories and letting them guide me through this sadness and realization that life and health are fleeting. ♥

October 2013 Reunion - RIP Rodney ♥

October 2013 Reunion – RIP Rodney ♥


Jakob Dylan “You’re No Match”

Still feeling under the weather, so its been a movie marathon weekend already. Came across this little unknown film….not the best, not the worst. It’s a movie for anyone whose life has been thrown off-course, out of whack, or simply not turned out the way they planned it. Heard this song from the movie soundtrack…had to share…♥

I may be down for the count
I may not get up again
Now, you could say I gave out
But that I never gave in…


Memories, music, mourning…

Today is all about memories, music, mourning, movement….remembering ♥mm♥…

What the heart has once owned and had, it shall never lose….♥mm♥

Here are some of the songs I am have been listening to…inspiring, sharing, understanding, remembering, honoring…my own tribute…


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