Category Archives: humor

Well, I did it …

I turned 50.

It wasn’t the big deal I had made it out to be in my mind.

My body did not, contrary to my expectations, spontaneously shrivel and die at midnight.

I slept like a 49-year old and woke up feeling a bit smug that I had moved into a new phase in my life.

When I danced around the kitchen singing happy birthday to myself, Murphy the wonder-pup danced around my feet as though he were celebrating with me.  Either that or he was doggy-praying that I would calm down and act my age.

I felt a sense of empowerment as I drove to work knowing that, on this day, I was half a century old.

I nearly depressed myself with the empowering thoughts because 50 sounds so much better than half a century.  Ugly crying wasn’t an option so half a century turned into two fourths of one.

50 was starting to sound exciting,

Half a century sounded like it belonged in the back basement corner of a now-defunct museum.

During my drive to work, my mind, as it usually does, began to wander.  I started down the broken road of things I would change, but decided unless it was my bed linens or the time on my watch, it wasn’t worth wasting my thoughts on.

I doubt there is a person on earth who wouldn’t change things if they could, but since the time machine hasn’t yet been perfected, it would be a mute point.

Mute.

So I sang happy birthday to myself again as I drove along and gave thanks to God that He let me have another trip around the sun.

I’m 50 and proud of it.

I can’t say I’m all that thrilled about the AARP mail, but I did like the look of that free backpack.

 

 

My beloved …

much missed and cherished convertible is back.

She still makes noises and currently has no back seats, but she’s running.

I have missed my little car.

I mistreated her by making her pretend she was a Jeep, but she took it.

I will mistreat her again to get to the places I need to go and she, as she always has, will understand.

She knows me, my dreams and aspirations.

She understands my yearning to see and photograph.

I’m very happy to have her back and hope she knows how much I’ve missed her.

She’s mine; she was always meant to be mine.

I won’t trade her when I am finally able fulfill my lifelong dream and get a Jeep.

No, she’s safe here. She will always have a place in my heart (and in my driveway).

I’m pretty sure she knows that.

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She took me to my falls many, many times.

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She took me to the high places at Clingman’s Dome in the Smoky Mountains, where snow fell heavily in October.

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She took me, in the pouring rain, to Hungry Mother Park in Marion, VA

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She took me up and down Big Moccasin every day, stopping often so I could photograph my favorite trees.

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She took me, more than once, to the Outer Banks of NC.

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OBX again …

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and again.

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She took my girls with me many times …

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      many times.

Yes, I’m very happy to have her back.

Very happy, indeed.

Desertion …

works in several directions.

It is easy to say poor, poor, pitiful me.

Wasn’t that a song?  I think it was.

Warren Devon sang it.  I think Terri Clark tried to sing it, but seriously?

Seriously?

It’s just as easy to say I am supremely blessed.

It’s, I suppose, a fine line.

That line between self-indulgent sorrowfulness and outright blessings.

I’ve never been any good at drawing lines.

I’ve lost good friends because drawing lines …

was a handicap.

Good friends.

Lost.

For good. For all times.

Because my line-drawing skills sucked like a wet-vac.

Those people, people I cared for very much, are no longer in my life because I didn’t conform to what they were looking for.

I wasn’t looking for anything other than friendship.

But, I think I had a vibe of some kind.

A sucker vibe.

I think of myself as strong and sufficient, but deep inside, I need approval; acceptance.

The people who pretended to know and understand me never understood that.

I find it plausible that others they prey on will find themselves in the same inexplicable, confusing place that I am in.

They ask for things, favors, jollies, but are Predators.

They have no real interest beyond their own control.

Yes. I know these people and am sorry for every thought they consumed.

I still think of them, more often than I want and wish they would leave my mind.

I wish to never think of them again, but strong personalities, people who use others for their own embodiment will always be out there.

Those of us who seek and thrive on acceptance will always be vulnerable to the likes of the JW’s
and DH’s in our lives.

Strength of character, knowledge of false friends and pure, unadulterated mistrust will sustain us.

Sad, but true.

Trust no-one.

That lesson I’ve learned.

It sucks to know you can’t trust the people you trusted.

While this is true for me, it isn’t such for everyone.

Follow your instincts.

Question your friends.

Trust few and investigate them thoroughly (hurting them be damned).

Trust your instincts.  It’s rare that they will let you down, but sometimes it happens.

Little else matters.

But do not be deceived … people you ‘”trust” will use you.

If you believe nothing else, believe that.

Trust no-one.

This I learned the hard way and still, nearly every night, cry myself to sleep.

As my late husband would have said, be ashamed.

That’s all I have to say to J and D.

Be ashamed.

You know who you are.

It horrifies me that I cry for you.

Damn you both.

There is nothing like a meltdown …

to put things in perspective.

And I had one.

A good, old-fashioned meltdown complete with crying, sobbing, pacing, stomping, ranting, raving and, to make it an official meltdown not just just a casual break in stride, ended with the impressive sound of breaking glass.

What is it about breaking things that culminates  the entire process to tie it all nicely into a neat little package that leads, oddly enough, to the return of sanity.

I didn’t actually intend, when the meltdown started, to break anything, but throwing that heavy candle-holder dead on into my bathroom mirror and watching the shatter … well, that pretty much made my day.

That sounds nutty, right?

Of course it does.

At this point, you are doing one of two things:  nodding your head in agreement or shaking it in disbelief.

Those are the two choices.

There are no gray areas when it comes to the breaking point.  You either do, you don’t; you are glad you did or you wish you hadn ‘t.

I’m glad I did.

My mind is as clear as a bell.

The photographic celibacy I’ve been in for the past few weeks has passed, the writer’s block has been shattered just like that bathroom mirror.

I don’t use the mirror anyway.

My hair is too short to do anything but mousse it to stand up and I haven ‘t worn make-up in years.

I did have to buy a new toothbrush, however, as I wasn’t certain I got all of the glass shards out of it and dentists and coroners alike frown on putting glass in your mouth.

People who don’t know me personally are thinking right now that they are better off, people who do know me are singing the hallelujah chorus.

There is nothing wrong with going, once in a while, off the deep end … as long as nobody gets hurt.

This is a big reason why I don’t date.  Can you imagine it?  I’d  have a restraining order against me after the first week … unless, of course, I could find a nice Irishman who liked a donnybrook now and then as much as I did.

But that is neither here nor there.

Be who you are, even when you are throwing things.  That’s my motto.

Even Jesus threw things … remember the tantrum in the temple?    He is as much a part of me when I’m throwing things as when I’m in His woods or writing His words.

I’m His either way and there is magnificent peace in simply knowing that single fact.  I, like the sun, the stars, the moon, the earth, the grass the trees … have a purpose.

And He helps me find it, sometimes by throwing things.

How very cool is that?

Like a moth to a flame, so the fireflies are drawn to the moon of summer.

Like a moth to a flames, so the fireflies are drawn to the moon of summer.

In the midst of the Polar Vortex …

my heat goes out, or at the very least makes it painfully obvious that it is planning, in the very near future, to take an extended vacation.

No phone, no lights, no motor car; not a single luxury.  (this is completely untrue, but it manifested itself, unbidden, in my head) .

Not good, I suppose, but not the worst thing that could happen.

Not the song in my head, (while the theme from Gilligan’s Island wasn’t my first choice, I suppose it beats Henry the Eighth), but the heat going out.

Keeping up with my brain is a full time job and sometimes, even I want to quit.

Yet, I digress.

I still have power, which means my heated mattress pad works.

I still have hot water so hot showers are there to eradicate the goosebumps.

I have many quilts that Granny (God rest her soul), lovingly made for me.  They are warm, too, hand sewn and have enough love in them to keep me warm even if they were only threads.

I don’t know what is wrong with it.

The heat, not the shower, the quilts or the mattress pad.

It started making a noise that sounded similar to the sound the brakes on my car makes when I stop suddenly.

I suppose I will have to call the man.

I could call my dad and have him call the man, but I am working diligently on being independent, self-sufficient, self-reliant.

Funnily enough, I waited until I was nearly fifty years old to come to this decision.

That is, in part, why I don’t know how to fix my own, among other things,  poorly functioning furnace.

When I learn to fix the furnace, change the oil in my car, replace my brakes and fix the broken tail light that has gotten me pulled over three times this month, I will have made it.

I’m not inept.  I can photograph nature  like nobody’s business.

I can string words together to articulate what I want to say when I want to say it.

I can write poetry that incites tears and sketch peoples’ faces that illicit sighs.

I have plenty of artistic ability, but it is fairly useless when things break.

Oh well, it is what it is and will be what it will be.  At some point, the man will come to fix my furnace and I will once again bask in heat; in the meantime, I’m sitting here with my heavy coat, gloves, ear-muffs and scarf on.

And for each of those things, I am grateful.

One moment, one hour, one day, one month, one event at a time.

That’s how I see life.  A little thing like a crippled furnace is no reason to change that.

It will get fixed when it gets fixed.

It isn’t, by a long shot, the worst thing that could happen.

Staying warm the old-fashioned way and finding it adventurous while I do so.  I am, after all, the adventurous sort.

I simply didn’t expect adventure  to exploit itself in my living room, but being a Sagittarius, I will take it as it comes and make the best of it.

That is what we Jesus loving, faith having, wishful thinking Sagittarius beings do.

A snowy day at the base of Clinch Mountain

A snowy day at the base of Clinch Mountain

A beautiful view of a snowy Clinch Mountain

A beautiful view of a snowy Clinch Mountain

Snow-covered cows as they indulge in hay.  They seem no worse for the wear.  Encouraging.;

Snow-covered cows as they indulge in hay. They seem no worse for the wear. Encouraging.;

I’ve said it before …

and I’ll say it again.  I am much too soft-hearted to be a  nurse.  So many things that I come into contact with on a daily basis makes me want to weep and scream at the injustice of life.

I am supposed to simply speak to people and let them know that they are not just a patient, but it isn’t  that simple.  They are people to me.

They are my mother.

They are my father.

They are my daughter, nieces and sister.

They become part of my heart and being and I take them home with me.

I have cried many, many tears for those that I visit with.  I have held their hands, held their family’s hands and prayed with them.  I try to leave them where they are, but they won’t stay there.

They come home with me.  I think about them and hope that they will live until morning; hope that if they don’t, their sons, daughters, mothers and fathers will be able to cope with loss of their existence.

I want to be strong.  I will myself to be stoic and unattached, but that lasts as long as the mist under a strong morning sunrise.  I love these people.  I fall in love with their families and I feel the pain, sorrow and devastation of their loss on every front.

The older I get, the more squeamish, melancholic and dramatic I become.  I surely thought that I would be stronger and more able to control my emotions at this point, but the truth is that I am more susceptible to emotion and empathy than I ever thought possible.

Sometimes, things happen that are funny and yet, the humor battles sorrow for there is nothing beautiful or funny about someone who doesn’t know who they are or where they are or what they have accomplished in their lives.  The emptiness is devastating.  I find myself bringing people home with me in my thoughts and crying over their infirmities.

I never wanted to be a nurse.  I wanted to be a photographer.  I wonder sometimes if I don’t make a better nurse than a photographer.  And then I realize that I can be both.

One makes me a better of the other.

I photograph for the sheer pleasure of it and  yet, when photographs are forbidden, I see past what is present.  I am thankful, on many levels, for the blessings bestowed upon me.

I am a nurse.

I am a photographer.

I am myself.

I am content.

What more can anyone ask than to be content in the life they are living.

I am, above all things, thankful, for the joys, the trials, the triumphs and the the lessons.  Thankful for the things that hurt me and those that bring me joy.

One without the other is insubstantial; combined, they are powerful beyond the description of words.

I. Am. Blessed.

And I am thankful.  The images, whether in real time or captured on film are what life is about.  Life is images and images make up life.

Again I say, I. Am. Blessed.

Bodie Island Lighthouse (my OBX favorite)bodieislandlighthouse

Matt … a truly beautiful human … hatteras_lightning-59

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A doe at Bodie Island hatteras_lightning-71

Beach Beauties … outerbanks_day1-327

I got up on the wrong side of the bed this morning …

literally.  The night was filled with dreams; vivid, bold, colorful dreams.  I woke myself up once talking but at least I wasn’t walking around outside.  That’s always a plus.

In the wee hours.

In the dark.

While I’m asleep.

I know, by the sight of my bedclothes this morning, that I did my fair share of tossing and turning … turning to the point that my head was at the foot and all four of my pillows were in the floor.

When the alarm sounded, I sat up immediately, as I always do, so as not to drift back off to sleep.  It didn’t occur to me when I wasn’t able to find my cell/alarm that there might be a problem until I stood up and planted my face squarely into the wall.

I knew then there was a problem.

The pain was intense and my first thought was of an old episode of “The Brady Bunch” in which one of the brothers threw a football and hit Marsha in the nose.  I actually remember putting my hands over my face and saying out loud “my nose”.  I said a few other things as well, but no point revisiting that because it is neither here nor there.

The last thing I need is to break my nose again.  Well, maybe not the last thing, but it’s on the list.

As far back as I can remember, I have been a very active dreamer, not in the wishful thinking sense (though I am that kind, too), but a sleep dreamer.  I nearly always remember my dreams which, depending on the dream, can be a good or bad thing.  I talk and walk and do all kinds of crazy things in my sleep.  I attempt to control my dreams by thinking of things I want to dream of before I drift off.

It doesn’t work.

If it did work, I would dream of Vincent D’Onofrio on a regular basis.  As it happens, I don’t think I have ever dreamed of him.

Bummer.

The rest of the day after my face plant pretty much followed suit.

Murphy’s Law at the top of its game.

It ended magnificently, however, with a belligerent storm full of righteous fury.  The lightning slashed, thunder cracking behind, slamming the air with sound and more than once, causing me to jump like a rabbit.

No far-off rumbling bellows for it this night.

It meant business.

It was perfect.

It was pure awesomeness.

Hoping the serenity it left behind will stay with me and allow real sleep without all the drama.

Bodie Island Light in the darknessBodieIslandLight

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