Did you ever stop, look at your life, and generally feel like your name is Forest, Forest Gump? I do, all the time. I see things I have done, and I am shocked that I did them. Some are amazing – “Wow, I hiked up a mountain in heels”, some are funny – “Wow, I threw a surprise party for my then fiance, and he ended up surrounded by naked women”, and others are depressing – “Wow, I was married for 10 years, and I accepted/created misery for 8.”
In everything, I’m coming to a place where, no matter the context of the memory, I can smile. It is not easy, but I’m very glad to be here. It seems like we have all been conditioned to feel shame and blame for every moment prior to this one. All of those emotions and thoughts then prevent us from chasing after our dreams, aspirations, or hopes. We turn, then, to everything and everyone besides ourselves. I listen to music, and I find myself overwhelmed with “how the fuck can someone make something that beautiful?!” Forest Gump is one of my favorite movies, and I have always thought, “Where did that come from? This concept, this idea…this movie is one that people will drop everything and watch!”
Life is like a box of chocolates has become a household recitation, because it’s true. I just happen to be one of the nutty chocolates, which is fine, because I like big nuts and I cannot lie. (you other brothers can’t deny…Sorry…) Okay and we’re back. The point in my rambling is, I’ve always identified deeply with Lieutenant Dan. Most of my life was me climbing into a crows nest, shouting at a storm, defying everything to kill me now. I didn’t lose my legs in war; rather, I chopped them off, along with my arms, my head, my intuition, and so forth. In my place, I left a hot dog of repressed emotions, anxiety, depression, and odd bits that I’m not sure any of us want to know where it came from. (And we can all agree hot dogs are delicious, unless you don’t. In which case, I don’t know if we can be friends anymore – I kid, I kid.)
I also identified a lot with Jenny. I kind of hated Jenny, because she hurt Forest. I thought she was a total slut and she used Forest. It’s weird to think I identify with people I don’t really like. In reality, though, I am a lot like Jenny, and I think Jenny is pretty cool; I think I’m supposed to judge her and call her a slut, and I don’t wanna. I’m not cool in that I haven’t traveled the world, nor have I played guitar naked (due mainly to the fact that I don’t know how to play guitar). I have found myself naked in very odd circumstances though. There was a toga party that found me losing my toga and running into the woods, because Captain Morgan is delicious. There was another time a Jell-O wrestling match turned into me climbing a roof and howling at the moon, because DayQuil fucks me up. (I swear…) Luckily, I chased it with pancakes at 3AM, so I was fine. I tell these things because it was fun. It was ridiculous. My life has always been ridiculous and fun. Shit happens to me and I laugh, because why wouldn’t it happen to me?
I had postulated a while back that, according to Murphy’s Law of Motherhood, anything that could go wrong will happen during your period. I also had said that I believe very firmly that God is a woman, because only a woman has the cunning to mechanize the world in the way that it is. Only a woman can be misogynistic enough to make other women be what we are. I say that somewhat tongue in cheek, because only a woman can also bring life into this world, nurture life within her body, and somehow manage to get everything, EVERYTHING tossed at her, juggle it, and tell herself “I suck at everything.” I type this in awe of women in general, in awe of life in general, and in awe at the potential we all have within – woman or man.
Maybe it’s just me, maybe I am the only woman that looks around, during what (I’ll describe) as a nervous breakdown – my 5th! woohoo! and say “You shitbag, the laundry isn’t put away…the floor needs mopping…and WHY AREN’T YOU STIMULATING THE CHILDREN?!” The last part is an exaggeration, I simply kick my children outside and force them to (GASP!) play and use their imagination. Alternatively, I do embrace screen time when I am so out of energy that thinking thoughts is too much. Or, those rare occasions I’d like to take a dump or cook dinner. All of these things happen while I’m working, too, which is a lot of fun. I genuinely enjoy getting up, getting three kids out the door, jacking myself with enough caffeine to jump start a bull, and then working. After that, I get the treat of homework, dinner, cleaning, laundry, and berating myself for all I have not done, all I have done, and all I will do. Anxiety is awesome!
Something changed, though. The last part started getting quieter, calmer. I’ve found myself becoming more like the sexiness of Gary Sinise with prosthetic legs and a haircut (I would not complain if I had a beautiful Asian woman by my side, or Tom Hanks, or Jenny, we’re very accepting over here…) Suddenly, I started thinking that maybe it didn’t matter if the laundry was folded and in baskets. I started thinking maybe I’d be happier if I spent my time writing here, writing poetry, meditating, and generally living a life that brought happiness in my life. I’ve yet to find that in someone else’s arm, following Catholicism’s rules, or anything but turning inside of myself and embracing myself – all of my good, all of my bad, all of my possibility, and all of my past.
Right now, my kids are down watching TV. It’s Saturday morning. We baked brownies last night, and I’m letting them have brownies for breakfast. My oldest is in a Superman costume, my other two are in their underwear (I think being a nudist must be hereditary). This would be a situation where I’d condemn myself according to Parenting Magazine and Facebook’s standards. In truth, I think it’s fantastic. I love having time to myself to wake up, journal, meditate, drink my coffee, and start my day. I love letting them take it easy and relax, because they had school all week, and I know we’re all tired. I love knowing that I’m going to make them vacuum the mess they made on the carpet, because I already saw brownie bits on my coffee gathering venture (because I somehow spilled my first coffee all over myself…sigh)
I’ve found the urge to climb crows nests and beg for death subsiding, and I generally find myself enjoying sitting around eating chocolate more. I’ve started dreaming again. I find myself contemplating what life would be like if I made my dreams come true. Hell, what are my dreams? How can someone have hope, make their dreams come true, or do anything more than toss ice cream angrily in a bed pan if they don’t have a reason to live? Is my purpose on this planet truly to want to die? Is it only to raise my children? That seems unfair to all four of us. If all I want to do is make them happy (impossible) and raise them, what do I do when they grow up? At 47, I’m supposed to start living for myself? As if 18 changes anything, right? What kind of example do I then set for my kids? As my daughter has seen me write, she started writing. As she saw me embrace crystals, she started playing with crystals. I’d rather be a woman that inspires my children and makes them proud, then a woman who lives and dies by her children’s happiness – something I cannot even give them anyway.
Back to my dreams, honestly, right now, I’d totally love to get to the White House and moon the president, and not because I got shot in the buttocks. I need to remain focused on growing my butt though, a pancake ass isn’t nearly tweetworthy enough.