I know I've used that pic of me before. I've been lax about taking self portraits lately...will start again when school is in session. This page was inspired by the wonderful and talented Marci Lambert.
Bear with me. This might be long. It's okay if you skim. I'm pro-skimming.
Today was the funeral. It was nice, a fitting tribute for a truly great man. I'm sad tonight, though. It's one of those slow, lingering, deep-in-your-lungs sadnesses.
I was reading some of my old journals the other day. I rarely read my journals. Frankly, they're often boring and chock full of sentimental rubbish. The journal I picked up the other day, though, was the journal I kept when we were in the throes of infertility and miscarriages. Take, for example, this entry (edited heavily), dated February 17th, 1994:
I am feeling really down, so I had to take a minute and write. If I don't, I think I'll explode. I don't have any one to talk to. No one would understand, anyway. They'd just give me pity, which irritates me. Pity is not what I want. Pity is an insult, a poor excuse for empathy.
I just do not know why I had to have a miscarriage...I bled for 3 and a half weeks. As time goes on, it gets harder and harder to deal with, instead of easier. And what makes it even harder is that so many other people around me are pregnant...everyone close to me is enjoying their happiness, and I am suffering my pain....I don't know how to endure any more....I am at the end of one road and the beginning of another, but I just can't seem to find the highway on-ramp....I'm just tired. I am tired of this trial. My muscles are tired. My soul is tired. I am searching for a way to find new strength to endure. That is what I pray for: strength to endure. While I wait for the strength, I am having a hard time shaking this depression, this introverted feeling. I can't shake it off. I don't know what to do.
I believe that the Lord answers prayers, and that he will answer mine. But this trial is becoming increasingly bitter and sour. My test of faith is much more sharp, it is hard to remember all of the good experiences I have had, even though those are all that I have to cling to. I sobbed for hours last night in bed. I just sobbed uncontrollably. Why? Why? Why? Why? Why? Why? Why? Why?
What amplifies the intensity of this trial is its implicit loneliess and inherent solitude. Its marginalization. Its stereotypes. Its secrets. Its isolation. Its degradation. Its humiliation. Its lack of explanation or reason. Its injustice. Its silent, night-time fears. Its day-time farce. And above all, its death of something that is not even conceived.
That entry is one of the more mild that I wrote during that time period. The pages of that journal are heavy with pain and anguish, and helped me bear my burden by being an unjudging, supportive friend.
Fast forward 12 years. I have three children. Yes, I am an infertile woman who miraculously ended up with 3 babies. Those years of pain and sorrow are now just a drop in the bucket. They're a healed-over scar that gives me experience and empathy for others in pain. Now I have new challenges, new sorrows.
I guess my point is that this, too, shall pass. It doesn't mean it won't hurt, that you won't ache. But it will pass, and new opportunities and challenges will come. And so, life goes on.
My best friend's husband has been battling brain cancer for a long time. He lost his battle in the early hours of the morning. He was only 47 years old. He fought the good fight, lived an upright and honorable life. He was a believer and a doer. He was a man of family and a man of God.
If you're so inclined, say a prayer of peace for a stranger, for the family left behind.
Then turn around and live your life with gusto, enjoy every moment, laugh, be kind, realize that it's not all about you and help others. That's how he lived his life. He will be missed.
Did you know that I live in the outermost reaches of Hades? No? Well, that's what it feels like when I'm sitting outside for an hour while the kids are in swimming lessons. It's hot, people. Then like the ding-a-ling I am, we stopped at the store for 15-cent boxes of crayons before swimming lessons, which isn't too smart considering crayons will melt in the car in less than 90 seconds. Duh. So I lugged ten boxes of Crayola around with me at the pool. Very smaht.
I arted yesterday, but the piece isn't finished.
If summer boredom has set in, feel free to check out the following:
Went antiquing with Wendy and scored this great loot. Old photographs, an old pricing stamp (looks like it's never been inked), old postcards with wonderful handwriting & stamps, and an old booklet on housekeeping (lol!!). I need to go back and buy more photos & cabinet photos...they were 50% off.
I promise this bit of art journaling isn't as creepy in real life...it does look creepy in the photograph, though. I think it's the purple on the eye...makes me look possessed. Maybe I am possessed. Maybe. This is for an Alphabetica journal...she requested we do art about "our word." I used journaler, since I've kept a journal since I was nine years old.
I'm feeling sluggish. Couldn't sleep last night...my mind was reeling with so many things. Sadnesses, disappointments, things that I don't have time to dwell on during the day. At night those thoughts come out and play and have a grand ole party. So today I have a sad-thoughts-can't-sleep hangover.
It's the ultimate circle journal. Sketch books were circulated at random between 4 artsits for 36 weeks. There was no other communication between the artists except for the art in the book. Way cool, way inspiring. I'd love to trade a book like this with an artist over an extended period of time. Art, send, art, send, art, send.
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