Category: Just because

Friends forever

Years ago I believed that if I remained friends with an individual for five years, we’d be friends forever.

That’s not exactly true…yes five years is a long time to keep a friendship going. However, both parties have to actively work to keep the relationship afloat.

I’ve moved a few times in my adult life and I’m the first to admit that it’s hard work to maintain friendships. Thankfully, I’ve maintained some relationships in my adult life. Although it has been work.

Like me, my friends are adults. They are employees, spouses, parents, and we all live in different areas of the country. Life gets busy and making time to check in on friends is a lot. We manage to keep in touch with each other.

I’m also inactive on the major social media networks which has become a primary way of keeping in contact with individuals. I believe that true friendships reach beyond the world of Facebook. Removing myself from Facebook and Twitter approximately 5 years ago, quickly showed how some of my friendships were faux/ships of pseudo/relationships! They didn’t outlast my participation in social media networks.

I also was invited to less baby showers, birthday parties, and weddings when I deactivated my major social network pages! – this was welcomed news because I was always mailing gifts or sending my mom on a mission to find a gift for the recipient.

Today, I think that it takes much more than five years of knowing one another to be friends for life. It takes commitment and communication.

Can we talk…more?

It’s been said once or twice that I keep to myself and don’t open up to anyone.

The individuals who’ve said this share familial ties with me.

Each time I’ve been told that I need to talk more, let people in, share what’s going on with me; I’ve actively addressed it.

I’m the type of person who’ll heed your advice until I see that your opinion is baseless so I would purposely talk to these individuals and try to share my world with them.

Each time I’ve tried I may as well be talking to the wall because these individuals actively ignored me. At times they would find ways to busy themselves in order to escape the conversation.

Don’t you recall that I told you these individuals would say I needed to talk to them more

Yet when I try they decide that there’s better things to do than listen to me.

I’ll never say that I’m untouched by this reaction; I am. Through the years I’ve gotten better at not taking it so personal…but it still bothers me.

Maybe I presented myself wrong or I have bad timing. These are the things I tell myself when a conversation flat lines or never materializes.

I guess I should stop responding when these individuals suggest I open up to them more and share my world; but that would be out of character.

Sigh, if you suggest I converse with you more…please attend the conversation when I make an attempt to have one with you.

The Magician

I associate with people from many walks of life; their beliefs and their appearances vary.

This is a wonderful thing, it gives me an opportunity to explore my beliefs and appearances.

Most who know me would agree that I have no issues letting people be who they are or even whomever they wish they were.

I don’t proclaim to know the Truth; I prefer to view it as my truth. Years ago I decided that I can only speak my truth and that my truth could be completely different than someone else’s. Neither of us are unequivocally right; although, we may each believe that we are.

Some of my associates speak about the fascinating prowess of one whom I can only characterize as a magician. Even my characterization is evidence of my truth; I’m nearly certain that my characterization would cause a pother between my associates and myself.

Thankfully, I’m constantly informing my readers that this is simply my opinion, my truth.

The magician, I’ll stop short of referring to this being as great – I have to have some respect for my associates. So yes this magician is one who comes to the rescue of many individuals – I only have their testaments as evidence.

Several of my associates affirm that the magician has rescued them during the darkest of days, those times when everything that could go wrong, did.

Let me expound by example:

One such associate loves telling a story about the time in his life when he lost his job, fell behind on bills, subsequently lost his home and his car…then the magician came in just when he was about to lose his final shred of hope and dignity…the magician came in and voila this man’s life was rebuilt.

Not only was his life rebuilt, it was better than it had been before he lost all tangible items of value.

He was provided a job that he would’ve never been considered for as long as he had the job that he ultimately loss. That’s important, the losses were purposeful and the magician was able to use these losses for good.

I could go on but quite frankly all of my associates’ stories about the magician sound the same. If I didn’t know for certain, I would swear these individuals simply traded stories or at least they were paid by the magician to become walking, talking billboards.

From what I hear the magician puts on a great show, unfortunately, the tickets sell out quickly or at least I haven’t learned how to acquire any so I have yet to see this great act for myself.

I do enjoy the stories my associates share with me about the magician.

My beauty

My mind is beautiful; you may not know that tidbit of information.

My thoughts are complex; however, they are sometimes quite simple.

My heart is beautiful or so I’ve been told

I care for many, even those I don’t directly know.

My character is intricate, not easily defined

It’s difficult to bind to words just how beautiful I truly am.

My beauty goes beyond my external facade.

Open

Open your eyes young one, you’ll see the truth.

Open your eyes, old one, you’ll see the truth.

Open your eyes, you’ll discover much.

Open your eyes, just open your eyes.

The Keep Pile

It’s easy to become attached to items; yet, when people watch television shows that highlight hoarders, they are amused by an individual’s resistance to getting rid of items.

My parents have an outdoor swing and I’ve spent many hours on it. I’ve watched the comings and goings in their neighborhood. I’ve had countless conversations in the swing. I’ve even had some life-changing moments in that same swing.

To some people it’s just a wooden swing; however, in my eyes it’s a place where many memories were made and important events occurred.

Thinking about that swing, makes me think about other items that have held significant value to me through the years.

There’s Mr. Eric the Bear that I’ve had since I was a toddler. According to my mother, the bear was gifted to me by my uncle when I was recovering from having my tonsils removed. Mr. Eric – I wonder where I came up with such name? He was an eggshell colored teddy bear with a brown bow tie. After decades had passed I donated him to a nearby women’s shelter.

Then there was my handheld electronic UNO game and my VTech computer. These were both gifts from my parents during the early stages of my gadget loving days! The UNO game is no longer working; but it’s still in my writer’s desk. Unfortunately during those days when I actively enjoyed this game…I also enjoyed nail polish! Yeah, there’s evidence of my nail polish enjoyment on the game, all these years later. I donated the still working VTech computer at the same time I donated Mr. Eric the Bear.

There’s many other items that held value to me – like my first Haiku poem in elementary or my Girl Scouts sweater for being the local top cookie seller – so when I watch people have a hard time parting with things, I remind myself that I’ve placed several items in the keep pile.

My grandfather

My paternal grandfather died in 2010 while I was in pursuit of my first post-baccalaureate degree. He had throat cancer, but ultimately died in his sleep during work travels.

He was a roofer by trade and he was a hard worker. Even during the years he struggled with alcohol addiction, he worked faithfully. Today, experts would suggest that he was a functioning alcoholic – but I am not sure the title fits.

Of course, he worked tirelessly and he maintained his household; but there’s more to functioning than being able to work.

He was born in a completely different time than I was and his family’s composition was one that I can never fully understand.

In my early and middle childhood days I was afraid of my grandfather. He was definitely harmless, but he was loud. He would come into my grandmother’s house loudly making his presence known.

You see my mother was a quiet woman who rarely raised her voice so the most noise in our house was us children playing or occasionally the television or radio. I was unsure of how to what it meant when someone was loud.

In my wee mind people were only loud if there was danger near. So when my grandfather would speak loudly I thought something was wrong and I would cry.

For quite awhile he thought that I was simply crying because he was in the building! My grandmother and mother explained that I was just frightened by his loudness.

He was always crazy about me. I was his first grandchild by his favorite child. Seriously, everyone would agree that my dad was my grandfather’s favorite child.

Fast forward to my teenage years, my grandfather and I grew very close. I was no longer afraid of him and I realized he was only loud when he was announcing his entrance into my grandma’s house.

He and my grandmother were separated but still married. He still financially supported my grandmother; however, for some reason unbeknownst to me they were separated throughout my entire life.

Once I was a teenager I would go to my grandfather’s house and sit with him. I loved those times, some times we would talk but most of the time we would just sit in silence.

My grandfather is no longer around but even to this day I love just sitting in silence.

When I moved for college I talked to my grandfather at least once a week. Neither of us were really good phone conversationalist but with the distance between us we learned how to converse on the phone.

He would tell me about his travels for work and about the men he worked with. I would tell him what I was doing in school and how I thought college was stupid.

He would generally end the conversation by encouraging me to stay in school. He told me my schooling would pay off eventually.

You see he didn’t have much formal education and neither did the majority of his siblings. Education was something some of them aspired to but it seemed out of reach.

My grandfather did get to see me graduate high school and college. He was very proud of me. My pictures were all over his house and he talked about me to any who would listen.

He wasn’t a perfect man, no one is. And he had some issues, everyone does. But he taught me a lot about work ethic and character.

I’m glad I was able to let him know that I love him while he was still living. I’m ultra glad that I got to know him as a person and not just as my loud grandfather who doesn’t live with my grandma but seems to pay all the bills!

I think he would be proud of me today. As I prepare to use my education to educate others. He would likely remind me of how he would tell me that schooling is good for me and it will pay off.