Saturday, December 11, 2010

hipsta app. again.

hipsta app photo taken by E.
taken a couple of days ago.
i'm holding a note that says:
will i feel normal again. ever?
i mean what i say.
i say what i mean.
there is no i'm saying 'this' but really mean 'this'.
in the moment it just is what it is.
that is a good thing.
don't get wrapped up in what it means later.
just let it be in that moment, whatever it is.
i am angry at myself.
for putting myself out there.
in what i feel was a blatant way.
i should have just kept it in.
the thing i am most angry about right now?
what was taken from me when james died.
aside from the obvious, james...himself.
and that my boys lost their father.
that fills me with such sadness.
james had SO much to show them.
give them.
teach them.
so much love for them.
i have lost my love for many things.
my passion.
sometimes i hear the boys bickering.
and it is all i can do not to curl up in a ball and scream.

Friday, December 03, 2010

magic.

watching someone work their craft...whatever it might be....is pure magic.
i sometimes watch people and wonder what it is they see.
you know, inside their head.
i wonder if things, life....everything....looks different to them.
do they interpret life differently than the rest of us?
how do they make it happen.
i sometimes wonder this about myself.
i finish a painting and for the life of me, can't recall how i did it.
it just, sort of....happens.
living in a sleepy coastal town?
THE best.
watching the fog lift, as you drive....or walk.....
take in the beauty.
an unexpected beautiful, sunny day?
appreciate every little bit of it.
i am once again reminded how fragile life is.
how easily it can slip away.
how easily, and quickly, bad things can happen.
tonight i am content to sit, by the light of the christmas trees, tucked safely inside my home.
i am also, once again, reminded of what really matters.
someone to share your life with.
all the LITTLE things.
the warmth of another human against you.
well, not just any human.
but one you care about.
strong arms around you.
needing to get back to that place where i can shut out the world.
and hopefully in the process, paint something that conveys passion. intensity. rawness. and beauty.
always beauty.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

7 things about alexander. because he's turning 7.

november 18th is alexander's birthday.
7 years ago today i went into labor.
i've been wishing james was here all day (as i do everyday) so we could talk about the day before zan was born when i went into the hospital and the day after, when he was actually born.
i made this birthday banner today.
i put it up so that when zan gets up in the morning he will see it.
it's the first crafty thing i have done in forever.
because he is turning 7, i'm doing 7 things about alexander:
1) i call him zan. only family and very close friends are allowed to call him that.
2) at school so far he has gone by alexander. he is deciding, however, whether he wants to change that to xander.
3) that kid has a wicked adorable evil little laugh!
4) he misses his dad and talks about him often. last night he said, "am i a miniature version of dad?" my answer? yes. you absolutely are.
5) he loves swords (of the nerf variety of course) and is obsessed with playing his DSI.
6) 90% of the time he is mellow. very, very mellow. the other 10%? watch the fuck out. the other 10% is when he is pissed off. and it ain't pretty. takes a lot to get him to that point, but when it happens....it's all out.
7) the kid has a unique sense of style. he doesn't care if his clothes match. he loves his 'eskimo' hat and wears it often. he digs having long hair and stands up for himself when people in the store, or other various places, mistake him for a girl. he sternly tells them (and it cracks me up when he does it), "i'm a boy!!!!" picture him glaring at you while he says it with his adorable little boy face.
i should do more than 7 things about alexander.
7 just isn't enough.
i should mention how he loves broccoli and brussel sprouts.
he likes sour candy more than chocolate (definitely gets that from james)!
he loves, like loves loves loves to make (author and illustrate) comic books.
and then sell them to me.
sometimes he seems so much older than he is.
but then when i tuck him in, and he HAS to have blue blankie and gallobs (a stuffed puppy HE named), i remember that he's still little. very, very little.
happy birthday alexander harrison danger reed.
i love you.

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

disconnected.

feeling very disconnected.
the silence is deafening.
and there is no ice cream.
anyone who gets my sense of humor will find that entertaining.
took this photo on sunday with my iPhone.
more hipsta shots.
really lovin 'em.
this is where i live.
and i gotta say, it's beautiful here.
missing feeling connected TO someone.
i'm definitely strong enough to stand on my own.
but it's nice, knowing that you don't have to.
IF you don't want to.


Monday, November 08, 2010

who wants it more.

i want this.
and have been taking small steps.
but i am not letting this happen.
and i am not sure why.
i need to clear my mind.
to be quiet.
so i can hear myself think.
from the inside.
to be mindful.
i need to make things happen.
i need to clear what is trapped in my brain.
start fresh.
a clean palatte.
no one is going to do this for me.
no one is going to do this but me.
it will be ALL me.
it will come from inside.
the true beauty of what is within you.
leaving you raw.
and open.
yet only you know the true emotion/story/intention behind each painting.
a need so strong, so powerful, nothing can stop it.
eventually.
maybe...some day...i can get back to that.
i want it.
what they see....it's different for each person....
it will speak to them.
it will move them.
the color.
the subject.
contrast.
rawness.
the power.
i feel it inside me.
gnawing at me.
begging me to do this.
to find a way to let it out.
find a way to tap in to that magic zone.
that place where you go.
where everything else fades away.
but your focus is clear.
sharp.
you can go. and go. paint for hours.
people could be watching you and you wouldn't notice.
or care.
because you are tapped in.
i NEED that.
so why am i not letting it happen.

Wednesday, November 03, 2010

hipsta app. cool shit.

hipsta print taken with my iPhone.
in my studio.
november 1, 2010.
if something feels right, how can you be scared of it.
SHOULD you be scared of it.
it seems to fit.
yet it shouldn't.
how can it possibly???
it mystifies you.
how did this happen.
i do nothing but question it. in its absence.
but when it is present, all else is forgotten.
things just feel right.
i am afraid.
the simple things in life ARE the best things.
i know this.
i really really do.
someone's arms around you in comfort or passion....
a gentle kiss.
the caress of someone ever so gently brushing your skin.
touching your hand.
rubbing your back....
quiet time with no conversation.
times of rapid conversation where you are engaged.
and before you know it 3 hours have passed.
sharing your passions.
knowing that there is someone there.
for YOU.
a sense of peace.
a deep breath.
when it goes away it comes crashing down hard around you.
that IS what matters.
these are the things i miss.

Friday, October 22, 2010

cut the crap.

i like doing weird things to photos.
i think it makes them more interesting.
i also think it's a way for me to hide.
you can only see me in the way *I* want you to.
you get to see the manipulated photo.
not the original untouched version.
something is happening to me.
and it's scaring the crap out of me.
written word is easier for me.
i'm not that great at face to face 'real' talking.
you know, the kind filled with emotion.
the difficult kind.
but gimme a computer and i can whip up an email that is straight to the point.
direct.
i say few words.
but the words i choose say a lot.
i personally think that's powerful.
SO much easier when i'm not face to face with someone.
i'm saying this because when james first died, i said and did a lot of things that i otherwise would not have.
i decided to cut the crap.
that life is too short.
so now, i pretty much (even though sometimes it is excruciatingly paintul to ME)....
even so...i say what i think.
and i mean what i say.
but.
i am finding myself full of fear.
finding myself NOT able to fully act in the way that i want to.
because what i want to do requires opening myself up.
and i'm not sure i am ready for that.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

took a little trip to seattle.

took a little trip to seattle.
in my short skirt.
knee high socks.
high boots.
and bad ass faux fir collar'd jacket.
it was damn nice.
did what *I* wanted to do.
wasn't a mom.
slept in.
enjoyed every second.
except for the part where i got a little bit drunk.
one night.
i sometimes wonder wtf comes over me.
should have made some small adjustments.
and then let the evening carry on.
but i didn't.
which i'm angry at myself about.
that is not like me.
i think i have a hard time reconciling who i am as just me.
vs. the person i always am, which is ethan and alexander's mother.
it's like i forget who i am...like i'm not sure who to be, exactly.
because i'm not used to NOT being with the boys.
when i get time away, i'm sort of feeling my way through it.
trying to remember who i am.
not doing a very good job.
went to pike place market.
it was awesome.
ate some fresh, hot doughnuts.
so good.
walked around and looked at everything.
ate some crab.
enjoyed the way it smelled.
enjoyed being able to look at what i wanted to see.
all the flowers were amazing.
SO beautiful.
bought THE ugliest bag i could find.
it's felted wool but looks like a big 70's shag rug.
it fucking rocks.
did the tourist thing.
and enjoyed it.
because i didn't have kids to keep track of.
and yell at.
this photo will somehow translate into a painting.
at some point.
the composition, colors...texture...
it will turn into something.
just not sure exactly what yet.
had a mini breakdown inside starbucks.
where i purchased myself a nice iced latte.
and stared out the window while thinking about the good things in my life.
i was scared.
and happy.
at the same time.
scared, because i was having a great weekend.
happy, because i was having a great weekend.
a little sad, too, i suppose because, well, i still get sad sometimes.
for no apparent reason.
one of the views from the top of the space needle.
come on.
it had to be done.
i was in seattle!
it was a good trip.
i still haven't quite learned how to completely let go of worrying about the boys when they aren't with me.
but i also really really didn't want the weekend to end.
because i loved having kid-free time.
i am always always always full of conflict.
it was nice to get home, and see the boys.
but damn. it was a fine weekend.
nice to be away.
and out doing something.
just being me.

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

i've gone brunette. er.

gave my iPhone to E today.
he took these as we were walking in to zan's school for his parent/teacher conf today.
first off, i've gone brunette(er).
darkened my color.
made it richer.
still not used to it.
also chopped it.
again.
i've had this nagging feeling ALL day.
finally figured out what it is.
first off, alexander was in a play at school today.
so i went.
it is THE shit that makes me saddest.
that james isn't here for these things.
because if he were alive, he would have been.
just reminds me, again, what is missing from the boys' lives.
that's how the morning started.
later in the day we went back to zan's school for his parent/teacher conference.
again, something james would have been present for.
so tonight, i sat, thinking.
feeling like something huge is missing from my life.
well, duh.
aside from the obvious, i realized i have no one to talk to about zan's conference.
james and i would have talked about it.
later.
after the boys were in bed.
just sort of mulled it over......
talked about zan's level in reading, how just like his father he is in this area, and any areas he might be struggling with.
zan's progress is really only something *I* care about.
zan is *MY* child.
it just makes me sad zan didn't have two parents watching him in the play.
two parents present for the parent/teacher conf.
i don't want the boys to grow up *wishing* things had been different.
i guess i can't stop that from happening.
they are always going to wish their father was still alive.
i just see the kids who have no parent show up.
and i am sure that hurts the child.
yes, zan has me.
but still....it's not what it would have been if james was still alive.
i am the only one to share in his triumphs.
or to worry about him in any way.
to be there to help him.
i just have had this feeling, more so today, than usual, that there is something hugely missing from my life.
i can only imagine how the boys feel.
they aren't capable of connecting their feelings to the proper words that go with them.
so we can talk about them.
they struggle silently.
at least i can write about it.
leave it here.
i happen to love the photo ethan took of me and zan. zan and me? too lazy.
it's classic alexander.
he's cute. adorable, actually.
and funny.
and mischevious. but in a good way. MOST of the time.
i wish more than anything that james was here to watch him grow up.
to see the changes in him.
they are huge.

Thursday, September 30, 2010

finished.

finished. i think.
it has depth (not as in distance).
though it does have that too.
depth as in, there is a lot to it.
layers.
texture.
strength.
contrast (light and dark).
rich, deep colors.
you can't see it in the photo but the black has so much color to it.
red, yellow, white, purple.
i can't tell you how much better it looks in person.





Saturday, September 18, 2010

alexander harrison danger reed.


one of my absolute all time favoriate photos of alexander.
sept 15, 2010
he was freshly out of the shower with his long locks hanging down.
love.
like seriously.
i love love love this kid.
and this photo.
this week hasn't been the best.
i am beyond exhausted.
forgetting things.
what i wouldn't pay for decent sleep.
for the asshole construction dude building the house across the street to not start working at 5am.
some things have been upsetting me this week.
things, it turns out, that i just needed to remind myself don't really matter.
what matters is what i have been through.
the crazy intense love james and i had for each other.
that i am doing what i need to for the boys.
and TRYING to do what i need for myself.
but sometimes i lose my way.
things become hard.
when they don't need to be.
so today i made the boys lay in bed with me.
and let them play their DSI's.
and i took a nap.
because if i didn't, it would have been a bad scene.
i am trying to get myself pumped back up.
so i can function at the level the boys need me to function at.
that *I* NEED to function at.
so instead of just talking about this shit, i can actually DO some of it.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

written in a moment of extreme emotion.

i once told therapist dude i thought the only way i could ever get over james was to find someone else to be with.
that i wanted someone to fill that huge, giant void in my life.
not that any person would ever replace james.
because they couldn't.
therapist dude's response: you're never going to 'get over' james. you're always going to love him. and miss him. but you are going to find a way to live your life without him.
so sometimes i feel like i am living two seperate lives.
one where i am paralyzed by sadness and literally am sick to my stomach because i miss james so much.
and one where life feels...well....normal.
because i KNOW my life doesn't include james now.
i realize that.
everything james-related is in the past.
it's just that that is so sad.
sometimes, i see or hear something.
something that sends me back in time.
like in a stupid movie where someone is being shocked because their heart stopped.
and that person dies.
yes. i realize it's just a movie.
but i have ALWAYS been very affected by movies, television, music....
art....
i sometimes think i feel things so, hm, how to describe it.
it just feels like things are coming at me hard and fast.
but nothing has really changed.
except internally.
and it's all because some sad shit happened in a movie, or whatever, and then all the emotion that i spend all this time and energy keeping down inside all the sudden comes RUSHING to the top.
sometimes i see james' blank, staring eyes.
and picture his body jumping up off the OR table after the defibrilator was implanted because they had to stop his heart and test the device.
fucking harsh.
and horrible.
but that shit actually happened.
it's the thing i was most distraught over while waiting in the waiting room while james was in surgery.
i was there by myself.
standing up against a wall.
i was fine.
but then.....
i couldn't keep it together.
and started crying.
silently.
trying so hard not to be noticed.
when some stranger came up to me and asked me if i was okay.
and, "did i mind if they hugged me".
such a kind gesture.
and now i'm laughing because that person had no idea how much i hate strangers touching me. much less hugging me.
i'm ALL over someone i like, or love, touching me, or hugging me.
and i love to touch and hug other people.
IF i know them.
i just shook my head no, with an 'i'm so sorry i know you are trying to be kind look on my face' and backed away.
got it together.
sat on the floor of the waiting room.
listened to my iPod.
until dr. ass came out to talk to me.
he had absolutely NO regard for james, for me......
so clinical.
making sure to give me details about when they shocked james' heart with the defibrilator they had just implanted into his chest.
and THAT is one of the worst things that ever happened to james.
it changed our lives.
james did it because he wanted to make sure he would be here for his children.
isn't that funny? yeah, i know. not really. but really?!
the device did NOT save him.
and i will never forget dr. ass coming out to tell me about the surgery.
what a horrible man he was.
so uncaring.
but that's just my side.
i am sure he has his own story to tell.
though honestly, i'm not sure what it could possibly be that could help explain away his uncaring, unfeeling manner.
how james was just another patient.
not a real person.
man.
father.
my best friend.
there are times, many times, when i do not think about these things.
but so far....these images find their way back to me.
i know there will be a time when they are less frequent.
they aren't excessively frequent now.
but they're still there.
so this is me, dumping the shit.
the horrible images.
leaving them here.
so when i go back to 'real life' i am not thinking about these things.
so i can get on with my life.
paint some paintings.
raise our boys.
live in this quiet, small, coastal town.
and just be.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

metamorphasis. very, very slow metamorphasis.

this, is now:


this.
not done. but finally made time to work on it again. i seem to spend 15 min here or 15 min there. i hate that kind of disjointed painting. but lately, it's all i seem capable of. layers and texture are important to me. of course composition and depth are just as important if not more so. this painting has changed drastically (and it may not look like it to you). but it has. i'm still not even sure how abstract this will end up being. it was going to be a bridge/pier kind of piece. then a boat in water. then just a water meets horizon line piece. broad. breath-taking, expansive. a painting (one of mine anyway) takes on several looks before it becomes just what i want it to be. but sometimes i don't even have control of how it ends up. it's like no matter how hard i try, the same style of painting comes out of me. and i haven't decided if that's good. or bad. it's, of course, extremely important to have 'your' own style. i'm just not sure i'm happy with exactly where mine is at. i want more control. to change things as i deem necessary instead of feeling daunted by the way the painting keeps turning out as if i have no control over it. when i do. hard to exlain. anywho, i have three different pieces going right now. this one, a black blue/green blue piece. and an offwhite green black piece. i love having other pieces to go to when something needs to dry or i just need to walk away from a certain piece for a while. i still have yet to find a day since the boys went back to school when i take them to school, go immediately home and start painting. it's been going to the beach for a run, helping out in the classroom, meetings with teachers, errands, and oh yeah, that pesky i better buy food before we starve thing. tomorrow morning? more errands. thursday is my day. the day of nothing but painting. i do have to say, one thing i really like about my art (is this totally rude and cooth-less to say something good about my own art??).....i love its 'raw' quality. my art is raw. it has a raw, edgy, take-me-as-i-am kind of feel and i dig that. it's how *I* am. that part of me i think is definitely conveyed into and through my art.

Thursday, September 09, 2010

sometimes the urge is so strong.

starting to feel like doing nothing but make art.
sometimes the urge is so strong it cannot be ignored.
just want to play.
explore.
try new things.
open my world up.....
feeling inspired.
which is rare!
trying to take away the fear.
fear of not creating something great.
just need to let it be what it is.
if i like it, great.
if i don't, no worries.
paint another one!
every time i paint i learn something.
become a better artist.
i just need to park the fear.
walk away from it.
just let myself go.

Tuesday, September 07, 2010

oripeircme

the other night at about midnight i decided to start painting.
had to get up early the next day but whatev.
i just felt like painting.
so i did.
i painted for a few hours, went to bed and then, of course, couldn't sleep.
because i was jacked up from painting.
should have just stayed up and worked on the painting.
this is it.
in progress.
i have put in the base.
begun the layers.
it's going to be something when i'm done.
no.
really.
it is.
abstract, but recognizable.
i hope.
anywho.....
tomorrow the boys go back to school.
on my agenda?
drop them off at school.
this will be, after all, the first time both of them have been in school all day.
after drop off, off i go with callie to the beach.
for my first official run.
yes.
you read that right.
i'm running.
and not from anyone.
just because i want to.
i HATE running.
but i'm going to try and change that.
and see if i can learn to love it.
reading a book about running.
we'll see how it goes.
i'm not all about the exercise.
i mean, i love to walk on the beach.
and do about 4 days a week.
i'm all about the yoga.
i am NOT all about the running.
or did i mention that already.
so tomorrow, you'll find me on the beach about 8:30am.
running.
or, passing the fuck out.
because i ran.
or because i'm so out of shape and ran.
either way, i'm doing it.
and after, when i can breathe again, i'll find my way to a hot cup of coffee.
and to my studio.
where i will begin working.
seriously working.
like with no little boys distracting me.
or fighting.
so who knows.
maybe i'll actually get something done!
would be nice since i have painted about 10 secnds since the boys got out of school three months ago!

Monday, September 06, 2010

weekend recap.

i am listening to the rain.
i find it very comforting.
the house is now empty except for me and the boys.
my bro and his boys are now safely back in california.
trying to change my attitude.
it's better.
but when i listen to myself.....
really listen to myself....
i can tell i'm still not me.
the me i used to be.
in certain situations, it's getting harder to reign in the emotion.
harder to keep things to myself.
which scares the shit out of me.
i think i have found a small piece of happy.
not the same happy i used to have.
but some happy nonetheless.
and i'm afraid it's going to go away.
or maybe it's not really even there to begin with.
at times i am sure, i mean SURE it is.
but then, in an instant, i am again filled with nothing but doubt.
i just know that in certain circumstances i can take a deep breath.
and am filled with a sense....hm.....how to describe it.
a small bit of peace???
it's scary.
because i cannot have my new level of comfort, this itty bitty small bit of peace i feel from time to time, yanked away.
i'm not sure i could handle it.
so i sit, unsure of what to do.
so i do nothing.
and just go forward trying in the best way i know how, to put my worries and fear aside.
and to just live it.
however it rolls out.

Friday, August 27, 2010

lkdAJWIjs

there is this place i like to go.
a place where the river meets the ocean.
or the ocean meets the river.
however that works.
it's peaceful to me.
the only drawback is this is a popular place.
and i'm more a fan of the unpopulated place.
i go to this place (with the boys).
always with the boys.
there are no options.
i take callie for a walk.
the boys play on 'the rock'.
or they walk with me.
or they play on the beach while i walk.
callie gets in the water.
then i sit.
there's a little concrete slab thing.
when the tide isn't too high i can sit right on it.
the view is truly beautiful.
maybe i should have shown the view.
instead of my purple toes.
looking to the left is the open ocean.
to the right is the river.
not the best photo.
but i don't really care.
the sun was in my eyes.
i am always searching/looking for things that make me feel.
because i spend so much time not feeling.
but then odd out of the blue things fill me with emotion.
things that 'should' make me cry, don't.
through it all, through the last year and whatever it's been now....
i try hard not to focus on the amount of time that has passed...
i hold out hope.
hope for something better in my life.
at some point.
hope to feel 'normal'.
not back to the way i was, because i will never be that again.
but MY new normal.
hope that some day that completely sad/overcome/empty feeling will entirely go away.
sometimes i just don't think i can take the sadness anymore.
my life is SO much better than it was.
i HAVE made good choices.
i recognize and acknowledge that.
but even so, i am still filled with such a sadness.
an emptiness.
and i just really really really want it to go away.
where is that softer me.
instead of the hard-edged not gonna let anyone in again me.
i feel like so much has been taken.
yet i still have so much to be thankful for.
i know i need to focus on that.
some days, it's just easier said, than done.

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

my hair is getting damn long.

it's weird to me, to be wearing a fleece jacket, in august.
trips me out.
i love living in astoria.
sometimes, a friend will say something, without malicious intent.
something that strikes a chord with them.....
they in turn, share that thought with you.
the problem for me is, though....
sometimes those shared thoughts and observations.....
they stick with me.
even when i don't want them to.
they focus on the ONE negative aspect of something or someone you hold important.
i don't think they 'mean' to.
it comes from a place i have been.
and maybe am still in.
a place of negativity.
i need to be understanding.
however.
my initial reaction is to pull away.
and keep to myself.
stop sharing.....anything.
this observation that was shared with me....
it came from a place of judgment.
that, i don't appreciate.
but, like i said, i am trying to come from a place of understanding.
and just let it go.

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

this is us.

alexander, callie and ethan.
pretty classic.
post-james, anyway.
alexander with a sword.
hello.
the kid is obsessed.
it's kind of scary, actually. ;-)
callie going for her (almost) daily puppy walk.
she couldn't be happier.
unless she was plopped down in the ocean.
she loves the water.
and brings home about half of the beach with her. then there's ethan.
always with his hat (a fedora).
always with a stick on the beach.
me following behind with my iPhone.
this is us.
spending what time we can at the beach.
i think the boys have had a good summer.
it's been filled with visits from auntie. and uncle. (seperately).....
visits from cousins (my bro's kids).
a quick trip to seattle.
a trip to spokane.
and our most recent trip.
going to the movies.
playing with friends.
more trips to the aquatic center than i can count.
endless hours of swimming, going down the slide, floating down the lazy river.
the boys....well....just being kids.
being boys.
school starts on sept 7th (for one hour, then 'officially' starts with a full day on the 8th).
two more weeks to go.
james, and i...and the boys.....
we used to be self-sufficient.
all we needed was each other.
i have tried hard to make our family of three feel like family again.
it's hard, when you're used to that fourth person.
he was SO important to us.
i knew the move would either make me completely and totally insane...or...
it would bring us (the boys and i) closer together.
today i would tell you it has brought us closer together.
tomorrow it may be a different story. ;-)
i think i am very in tune with my boys.
i know what they like.
where they spend their time.
who they spend it with.
every once in a while i am completely surprised by ethan.
he is 9 now.
today in the car he and alexander high five'd each other.
a couple of days ago he flat out said, 'i love you little bro'.
out of the blue.
i gave no reaction but on the inside i was passing out.
they either love each other.
or they are fighting.
alexander is coming into his own as well.
mr. independent.
i think james would be proud of me.
for the decisions i have made.
the actions i have taken.
for putting the boys first (while at the same time taking into account what *I* need/needed).
i do, too, from time to time, put myself totally and completely first.
times i try (and this might not be nice, but it IS true) to let the boys completely go from my mind.
it just has to happen.
so yes, there are times, when i put myself first.
when i am selfish.
there is guilt that comes with it.
there are times i just don't care and put myself first anyway.
not sure why, i just felt like writing about the boys tonight.

Monday, August 23, 2010

from time to time.

i want to melt into strong arms.
to not know where they end and i begin.
briefly.
to surrender myself.
and just admit that i do want that.
from time to time.
no matter how hard i have tried to fight it and say that i don't.
it is SO fucking hard to admit that.
why is that i wonder.
i don't think wanting to be cared for....
comforted....makes me any less of a strong person.
but maybe it does.
took this phot with my iPhone 8.15.10.
first part of our trip was spent with my family in california.
it was good. hot, but good. you undestand i HATE hot hot hot weather.
went from 60s (in astoria) to the 100's (or damn close to it).
and that, my friends, to way too fucking hot for me.
ick.
i ended up spending a fair amount of time alone on this trip.
not alone as in gee, i don't have the boys with me and i should be doing something great.
alone as in the peeps i was staying with went to bed.
early.
very early.
and i couldn't sleep.
OR....the peeps i was with wanted to go to loud places.
or shopping.
and i didn't.
loud places and shopping are so not my thing.
so i hung out by myself until they were done.
going away made me realize that i do, in fact, consider astoria home.
all i wanted to do was go home.
i felt homesick.
for james, i think.
AND my home/life in astoria.
i really, really really wanted to go 'home'.
the second half of the trip was spent where we used to live.
turned out to be hard to go back.
part of the reason is, a friend of mine *deep breath* felt it would be good for the boys to visit our old house.
i emphatically stated before we even left that i didn't want that.
but it happened.
against my wishes.
when i found out what was going on i, of course, felt i had to go.
i wanted to be there to answer any of the boys' questions.
to support them emotionally......these little boys equate our old house to their father.
it's where he got up one day, showered, got dressed and drove away to work.
but then never came back.
i felt, and at this point in time, i still think i made the right decision, not to take the boys to see james in the hospital.
i didn't want them to see him hooked up to machines, tubes, everywhere....
to see his non-responding eyes.
the smells.
the sounds.
it was NOT a place for children.
i wanted them to remember their father as the strong, vibrant man he was.
okay...anywho....
the new owners graciously showed us every room.
even the back yard and garage.
alexander just wanted to swing on his old playset.
ethan wanted to know if his room had been painted.
i painted it blue and he wanted to make sure it was STILL blue.
i was doing fine.
no emotion (that i was showing on the outside).
UNTIL....the new owner walked us into my old bedroom and bathroom.
it was there i could see, plain as day...james standing in front of the mirror...shaving, brushing his teeth, taking his meds....
and i had to get out.
i HAD to get out.
i kept it together and got the boys back to my friend's house and inside.
and then i sat in the garage.
and cried.
after 10 or so minutes i got my shit together, went in and was back and present with the boys.
my friend and i had words over this.
as their mother, i felt it was MY decision whether or not the boys went over to the old house.
that was taken away from me.
the act was not malicious.
it was done with thoughts that going back would provide some sort of closure for us.
what my friend didn't understand is......
it's just a house.
to me, anyway.
to the boys, it was more.
i get that.
and i would have taken them if THEY had asked.
the day i moved to astoria.....
the day i drove away.....
THAT was closure for me.
i never intended to set foot back in that house again.
didn't want to.
didn't need to.
turns out, i did anyway.
my friend apologized.
we moved on.
before dinner with james' mom (major reason for this trip was to keep the connection between the boys and james' family).....
my friend and i took a little detour.
i wanted a little something done.
a new piercing....
turns out so did about 15 other peeps.
the line was incredible.
so we left.
alexander, kyler, ethan, sawyer and riley.
kyler, sawyer and riley are my nephews.
they are my brother and christine's boys.
when we moved i promised the boys they would still see their cousins.
i have kept my promise.
one of the hardest parts of moving the boys has been how far away we now are from these boys (and their parents).
alexander and kyler have a special bond.
ethan, sawyer and riley do too.
sawyer and riley are twins and are very close to ethan's age.
kyler looks after alexander (being the youngest).
it's the sweetest thing ever.
i miss these boys.
the 'first time' going back is over.
won't be rushing back anytime soon.
i know, eventually, i will have to go back.
so the boys can see james' family.
i'll deal with that when the time comes.
for now i am just more than happy to be back in astoria.

Thursday, August 19, 2010

if i could go back.

i own a plane. well, part of a plane. this is alexander sitting in said plane. once upon a time, james was healthy. he wanted to learn how to fly. so he did. we bought a plane (along with a couple of partners so the expense wasn't quite so high). it was an old falling apart plane that james and my brother put back together. it took hours (and hours and hours) of engine rebuilding and learning things they did not yet know. flying was something james loved to do. before we had kids, we would hop in our plane for quick weekend trips. those are good memories people. fucking good memories. learning to fly is NOT easy. it requires ground school, hour after hour (after hour) of instruction (from a qualified flight instructor), access to a plane to fly while learning how to fly, and then logging a couple hundred solo hours flying a plane hoping to hell you don't do anything stupid and end up dead. then you must take a check ride (where you are scrutenized by yet another qualified person). said qualified person decides if you're good enough...have met the criteria....and hopefully you don't do anything completely stupid because you're taking the equivalency of a diver's test up in the air. mistakes are kind of a problem.
once upon a time i took ground school. and decided that *I* wanted to learn how to fly. and then james got sick. and i didn't finish. how could *I* fly the plane if he couldn't?! how would he feel if i was sitting in the left seat and he wasn't? the left seat being where the pilot sits in a small plane(you know, in case you don't know how small planes work)....
so i gave it up.
i walked away.
i put obstacles in the way of finishing.
college.
then i had ethan.
by the time james and i had kids, he had already lost his medical (the FAA doesn't like people with heart problems flying around). so our boys never went anywhere with us in the plane. it was as if that chapter in our lives just ended. that was it.
i am sure my brother is going to kill me, posting a photo of him without his approval.....but....i happen to love this photograph. yes, that is my brother sitting in the left seat of our plane with alexander. while on our little trip (which i will discuss later)......i asked my brother to encourage the boys to take a ride in the plane. once james lost his license (and i walked away), our plane pretty much was flown by my brother (who also got his pilot's license). so when we went to see my brother and his boys last weekend, i asked my bro to encourage my boys to take a flight. the boys know their dad was a pilot. but since james never got to take them up flying, it didn't really mean anything to them. my hope was, that the boys be introduced to something new. something that perhaps ONE of them would love. turns out, alexander was quite excited. uncle let him 'fly' the plane. uncle let him take control of the yoke. they did some zero g's. which, btw, alexander totally loved! right on. lol... the kid is fearless. it was awesome. so, anyway.....my hope was that one of them would be introduced to some of the things that meant so much to their father and that they would like it. every new thing your child is exposed to could open the door to something they hold as a life-long love. it could be the ONE thing that changes their life forever.
will this be the case with zan and flying? i don't know. but i do know that i am so happy he went up. that uncle barry let him fly the plane. that uncle barry let him put the landing gear down. that uncle barry let him flip all the crazy switches (and dude, there are a lot of them)......alexander now has a happy memory to equate with the words "daddy was a pilot. daddy used to fly this plane". alexander wore james' headset. nice touch, though sad (to me) at the same time. bittersweet i guess it is.
now....on to what this meant to ME. i did not go up in the plane this past weekend. i wanted to. just didn't work out. flying a small plane is quite a rush. taking off, landing....there really is SO much to know, and do, and control. it was this particular day, while my brother took zan up for his first flight, that i wished i had not walked away. because flying is something i enjoy. if i had really wanted to, i COULD have finished. james would never have stopped me. he would have supported me. it was a decision *I* made. and one i wish i had made differently. i just couldn't see finishing. i thought it would hurt james. so i walked away.
i believe if there is something you want to do, bad enough, you will find a way to do it. i did not want to fly bad enough. i let too many obstacles/emotions/worry get in the way. i SHOULD have done it. finished. but i did not.
i am very happy, though, that alexander has now been up in one of the planes daddy used to fly. that flying was introduced to him. hoefully he will have the chance again fairly soon to go up in our plane. i want to build on this first experience. i am going to try and let go of this, regret, i guess it is, about not finishing. i made my choice. i know it really boils down to me not wanting it enough.

Thursday, August 12, 2010

work in progress.

this week i have been preparing.
preparing to get on a plane.
to go back.
back to the place that holds so many memories for us.
part of me, doing right by the boys, and james....
is taking the boys to see his mom.
and his sister.
and her kids.
going back is NOT something i want to do.
but i'm doing it.
because it's the right thing to do for the boys.
because if it had gone the other way, and i had been the one that died, i would want james to do the same for me.
worked on this painting last night.
it made me focus.
THAT is a fucking amazing part about painting.
how once you start, and are focused......
IF you can get focused.....
once that happens....
you CAN.
you do.
just that.
you paint.
and breathe.
listen to music.
and just be.
while you create something.
something that comes from inside you.
still not done.
but the tone has changed.
another layer has been added.
it's deeper.
richer.
it was nice to paint last night.
i needed it.

Sunday, August 08, 2010

something spectacular.

started this painting two months ago.
haven't touched it since.
another abstract.
work in progress.
it's at a good place.
i like it so far.
sometimes when i like a painting i become afraid to take it further.
for fear of fucking it up.
course i can't walk away from this one.
it's clearly not finished.
this is a big piece (36 x 48).
last night i experienced a sense of peace.
doing something simple....hangin at home....
enjoying the company of those i was with.
it was nice.
a sense of peace.
it was damn nice.
enjoying a glass of wine....
something on the grill....
just your everyday shit.
nothing spectacular....just nice....which, turns out....IS something spectacular.
make sense?
it does to me.

Thursday, August 05, 2010

anyone want to count how many times the word fuck has been written in this post?

unedited iPhone photo.
8.5.10
i have told myself i am stupid about 50 million times today.
for even thinking about opening myself up.
what the fuck was i thinking.
someone snap me out of it.
fucking shake some sense into me.
i fucking lost my mind and was acting crazy.
seriously.
what the fuck was i thinking.
even CONSIDERING it.
thinking, 'wouldn't it be nice'.
but clearly i am an idiot.
here is where i'd really like to spell out exactly what it is i am talking about.
but i can't.
unless i quick go start another blog.
so i'll just be vague.
for now.
to think i even thought there might be something.
clearly i am an idiot.
what. the fuck. was i thinking.
today has not been a good day.
a happy day.
it's been filled with holy fuck.
i have to rewind and suck that shit back in.
not anything i've said.
my actions.
because actions speak louder than words.
my actions have been unexplainable.
clearly i lost my fucking mind.
my reaction to recent events has, however, made it clear to me what it i want.
whether i'm ready to admit it or not.
yeah. and i'm not.
i'm going to squash it down.
make it go the fuck away.
i am angry at myself.
i thought i was in control.
turns out i was wrong.
turns out there are some things you just CAN'T control.
letting yourself become slightly vested in anything opens up the possibility of hurt.
and anger.
yay.
yeah, that was scarcasm.
holy fucking crap.
did i mention i'm angry at myself?
oh yeah. i think i did.
course, it also opens up other possibilities.
i am aware of that.
and it was only a tiny step i was considering.
i'm finding myself full of shit.
apparently i talk big.
about wanting to life live.
passionately.
fully.
but when it comes down to it...
i am scared.
i feel like i've lost something.
something i didn't know i wanted until the possibility was yanked away.
maybe it was never even there to begin with.
i hope all this fucking shit goes away soon.
i prefer the feel nothing but get through the day without crying option.

Saturday, July 31, 2010

containment.

this post is for me.
documenting a part of my life in a way i never have before.
this is me.
at my absolute weakest.
what would possess me to grab my iPhone and take THIS photo??
looking at photographs is like stopping time.
you can see yourself (or whatever it is you are looking at) in an EXACT moment.
that, for me, is key.
key in helping me determine just what the fuck it is, or was, that was making me so sad/angry/unhappy/whatever.
in that given moment.
'that moment' is the point where i want to say fuck it.
where i want to let myself fall over the edge.
no, you don't need to be worried about me.
i'm just talking about a momentary break.
a way to escape.
that can be done in many ways.
so far, i have been able to stop myself from going over the edge.
but letting it happen is appealing to me.
because in that nothingness, you're happy.
yes, i know it's a false happy.
but it's a break.
my pattern is this.
i get sad.
then angry.
then pissed off.
yes, angry and pissed off are two different things to me.
then i get the attitude that i don't give a fuck.
it's hard to come back from that.
easy to let myself go.
for a bit.
as i have been doing a lot lately, i struggled with whether or not to post this.
i considered writing it, and just leaving it unposted in drafts.
but this is me.
there is this part of me.
a part i am....well....constantly trying to contain.
this is not a cry for help.
i am fine.
so no 'kimberly, seek help' comments.
i would never do anything to cause pain to my boys.
it is my plan to ALWAYS be here for them.
if you don't like what you read here, stop reading.
i'm just sayin.
the boys do not see this side of me.
i need a place to let it out.
and this is it.
on the up side (and this makes me laugh)...and no people, i'm really not crazy, i have damn cute hair.
tonight, at least.
as you can see, i overcame the moment of weakness.
now i am back to being my smart-ass self.
all is well.
i just feel it's important for me to post this.
it's almost as if my blog (at times) has become my art journal.
sans the art part. *sigh* how i miss making art.
i seem to be so completely touched, and easily overcome by music.
that was what set me off earlier, sitting here at my desk.
the boys were taking their showers.
i was listening to music.
as i always do.
and a song came on that just brought on this rush of powerful emotion.
it overtook me.
filled me with so much emotion.
the only way i could deal was to let it out.
that's how i roll.
i keep it all inside.
and then something totally unrelated to all the crap brings it out.
a song.
a simple song.
a melody.
and then it ALL comes pouring out.
and then it passes.
and all is well.

Thursday, July 29, 2010

grief.

this post may not make much sense.
at least to someone else.
everyone grieves differently.
i do believe that to be true.
for me, at first, i couldn't grieve at all.
i was in too much shock.
my body went on auto pilot.
i cared for the boys.
did the things you do.
planned a service.
talked to E's teacher so she knew his father died.
so she would understand his behavior at school.
so began our life without james.
i would be overcome by severe and take your breath away emptiness.
throw up.
again and again.
a sadness i had not experienced before.
then i would go back on auto pilot for a while.
it was my body and mind's way of saying...whoa....that's a little too much there.
too much to handle.
too much to process.
there were so many stages of grief.
i am still grieving.
yet at this point, it doesn't take over my life.
at times, yes.
but not in an on-going holy fucking crap i can't breathe kind of way.
i can now talk about james.
and smile while doing it.
course, i'm sad too, but i can laugh, and think back fondly.
i can also, look back at photos, laugh AND cry at the same time.
happiness from the memories and sadness that there will never be more like them.
that include james.
why did i choose to post this particular photo you might wonder.
it's the last photograph of alexander and his father together.
alexander is four in the photo.
it was taken on september 1, 2008.
james died 5 weeks after this photo was taken.
it was a spur of the moment decision to take the boys miniature golfing that day.
alexander looks so young.
he seems so big to me now.
like a completely different kid now.
so grown up compared to how he looked in this photo.
here's the thing i'm most sad about (regarding my relationship with james).
i appreciated him when he was alive.
oh, you bet your ass i did.
i knew what a good man he was.
i knew it from the moment i met him.
but, what i didn't know....what i didn't FULLY realize, until james was gone.....
i didn't really appreciate him enough.
i didn't relish (is that even the right word) in us laying naked together.
when we were together, just the two of us (boys asleep or whatever)....there always seemed like there was something else we should be doing.
not just laying together, enjoying each other.
oh how wrong i was.
i appreciated the man he was.
the father he was.
yes, he had flaws.
we all do.
but i KNEW in the depths of my soul he was good.
and meant for me.
because he was.
and i wish, oh how i wish i would have just enjoyed HIM.
his body.
but it's true.
i miss that part of him.
of us.
and wish i would have given myself more fully to him in that way.
devoured him, and just fucking soaked it in.
as if it was going to go away.
because what do you know.
it did.
we were one way alone together.
the way two people are when they are crazy about each other.
the boys knew we loved each other.
we kissed, held hands in front of them....
but they never saw the raw sexual-intertwined emotional side of us.
as they shouldn't.
that was between us (me and james. uh, james and i)?
i just wish i had been more selfish, almost, and taken more of that time for us.
but we were always this.
or that.
i wish i had more fully appreciated that part of us.
because i miss it.
why have i been thinking so much about james lately?
i do not know the answer to that.
i really missed him today.
i miss him everyday.
but tonight i sought out photos.
i wanted to SEE him.
i can no longer smell him.
or feel him.
so i wanted to see him.
with the boys.
or at least one of them.
i think it was taking the boys to the aquatic center today.
watching their interaction.
knowing if james would have been there he would have been in the pool/going down the slide every second right along with the boys.
they have a different life now.
not bad.
just different.
so good in some respects.
but so sad and empty in others.

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

that feeling.

WAY more than i would like, i feel, and have felt that feeling.
the feeling that time is running out.
that there is never enough time.
for me to sleep.
for me to paint.
for me to do other things that i want and need to do.
for me to be present and engaged with the boys.
i feel like i have to pack as much as i can into every minute that i have.
it's almost a panic, at times.
yet i'm not capable of doing it.
i'm wondering how to make that feeling go away.
it's like when you go on a trip, and you can't wait to go.
and the trip goes by in the blink of an eye.
before you know it, the trip is over and it's time to go home.
that's sort of how i feel about painting.
and doing other things.
about my kid-free time.
i wish i could make that feeling go away.
james' death has made me VERY aware of how quickly time goes by.
and how things can change.
and that you need to appreciate what you have while you have it.
appreciate every good thing that comes your way.
i hope to never lose sight of that.
and the other things i know to be important.
james' death really, truly did make me aware of what is truly important.
the things that really matter.

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

judment.

i shouldn't post right now.
but here's what i say.
fuck it.
i have spent too much time NOT posting things because of what i 'should' do.
it's making me fade away.
why do people constantly bombard you with what THEY think YOU should be.
or do.
who can possibly think that my life is perfect.
i know the answer to that but i won't actually type it out.
my best friend, the man i love (here's where i'm not sure if i should put loved or love). because i loved him when he was alive. and i still love him now.
how can someone judge MY life.
when they haven't watched their husband with tubes and machines.
haven't smelled the smells that accompany days on end in a hospital.
how your husband doesn't look like your husband anymore.
he doesn't smell the way he used to smell.
you can't smell 'him' anymore.
only the plastic vent tube smell.
the smell of putrid liquid going into your husband through a feeding tube.
watched him go through hell, losing who he was because some random mother fucking virus attacked his heart.
because i was able to sell my house, and have another one built....my life is perfect.
just in case you were wondering.
what's not to love?
raising two children who miss their father more than anything.
telling them their father died.
watching the man you love with mucus coming out of his mouth because there's a ventilator tube down his throat.
so you take the suction thing and suck it out.
because it's the right thing to do.
because he deserves dignity.
looking at the man you love, laying in a hospital bed.
with eyes that don't see you.
with a body that doesn't respond.
making the decision to take him off life support.
living your life without him.
but yeah. life is perfect.
because i can make my house payment.
would it make you happier if i couldn't??
is that what you want?!
i will get this out and then feel better.
i KNOW i am lucky.
you better fucking believe i know that.
and i CAN do this.
i AM doing it.
and finding ways to grab on to little bits of happy.
hoping to find a way to hold on to more.
and i am angry (sometimes).
angry that i have NOTHING close to a regular family.
every relationship i have with my 'immediate' family is somehow fucked up.
i have not one single person that i can turn to.
and be completely open and honest with and feel like i am not being judged.
i have to find a way to let this anger go.
because it burns inside me.
it's always there.
and the relationship my boys have with james' family is pretty much nonexistent.
i guess if anything is ever to change, *I* must be the one that changes it.
why is that.
why is it always me making the effort.
i sometimes think certain peeps in my family say and do things out of jealousy.
jealously that i might have something they do not.
maybe jealousy isn't the right word.
maybe it's just they are so unhappy in their own world that they feel they must compare theirs to yours?
why can't people just be happy for you when good things happen.
and be there for you when they don't.
why does THEIR judgment have to enter the picture.
i just shake my head.
and now it's out.
and i feel better.
time to move on.

Sunday, July 25, 2010

seattle.

took a quick trip to seattle.
up on monday.
home on tuesday.
on my list of things to do....
pike fish market.
james and i never made it there together.
i wish we would have.
feeling overwhelmed.
i have sat and typed.
and deleted.
and typed.
and deleted.
can't get it all straight.
i just think it's time to let go of some of the shit.
so i can get out from under it.
i have been so filled with want and need to talk about james lately.
and i'm not sure why.
why now?
i get so completely filled with sadness about what the boys don't have in their lives.
but i can't discuss that here.
god how i wish i could immerse myself in painting.
or art journaling.
but once again, i feel 100% uninspired.
a complete and total lack of artistic energy.
i sure am going to be pissed when i piss away this time that i have and have nothing to show for it, aren't i.
scared shitless about something.
yeah. one more thing i can't talk about here.
i shake my head at that.
i know how to fix it.
just pisses me off that i have to.
so i have done nothing.
and posted very little.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

blog posts should not have titles.

it bothers me that i miss being part of an 'us'.
why can't i just suck it back in, take it back to the level it used to be (before james) and be happy with it just being me.
and not an us.
i am down with spending time by myself.
i don't like to paint when people are around.
i guess i'm just figuring out that i also like knowing there is someone for me to be with when i am ready.
when i want it.
it REALLY bothers me that i miss being part of an us.
i guess i thought i was more independent than that.
maybe i see wanting someone to hold me as a sign of weakness.
it's almost sad to me, that not much seems to phase me.
i'm not surprised when things don't go the way i thought they were going to go.
i'm not surprised when people say they will do things and they don't.
i'm also starting to get pissed off that i can't say what i really want to say here.
this blog is my journal.
yet i'm having to edit myself.
which totally pisses me off.
time to start a new blog??
thinking about it.

Monday, July 05, 2010

4th of july 2008, 2009 and 2010

ethan
july 4, 2010
just look at his face.
he was truly excited and happy.


i was thinking, as i was driving home from the beach last night, about my past july 4th festivities.

2008 brought bob and elizabeth to town.
james and the boys and i went to lake tahoe with dan, jan, rachael, bob and elizabeth.
rachael soaked james with a bucket full of water as he was laying on the beach.
not to worry.
he got her back later.
a nice dinner and hanging at our house.
then later we made the trek to rancho san rafael park to watch the fireworks.
it involved a long walk to/from our car up and down a steep hill.
it was the first time i truly became scared and acknowledged that james was, in fact, getting worse.
he couldn't make the walk.
he eventually made it, telling me to take the boys on up ahead.
he didn't want them to miss any of the fireworks.
bob and elizabeth stayed with james.
and walked slowly.
very slowly.
fireworks were nice.
but for me, over-shadowed by the fear and worry that james was no longer able to walk that distance.
it was three months later that james died.

4th of july 2009 found the boys and i sick with the flu.
all three of us.
at the same time.
puking.
it was fucking miserable.
we didn't go anywhere.
or do anything.
we were supposed to spend the 4th with my brother and his kids in california.
but yeah...that didn't happen.


fast forward to 2010.
began the day by discussing with the boys what the 4th of july represents.
surprisingly enough, they had no idea.
i want them to know about the declaration of independence, who wrote it....the true meaning, not just that it's a holiday, we blow shit up and bbq food.
that is part of it....and i'm fine with that, as long as they understand the root of why we do what we do.
we live in a beautiful, small coastal town.
i bought fireworks.
that's a first for me.
they aren't allowed where we used to live.
so i was excited that the boys would have this experience.
we met up with a friend in the morning for the parade.
then later in the day met up with another friend for a beach bonfire, good food, and of course...the setting off of a hell of a lot of fireworks!
i heard ethan say, "this is the best 4th of july ever!"
with supervision and help the boys set off their very first fireworks.
and they couldn't have been more happy.
i, personally, had a really nice time.
tons of people all up and down the beach with bonfires, lighting fireworks...pretty damn cool.
these ordinary, gee, this sure is nice kind of day/moments....
they ARE how you're supposed to feel.
this IS it.
acknowledge it.
fucking breathe it in.
it felt good to be where i was.
it was when the boys were asleep in the car as i drove home that i became sad.
and scared.
happy, sad and scared at the same time.
happy to have had such a nice day.
sad because i miss james, and i know the boys miss their father.
think i better add guilty to that list.
i felt guilty because i had a nice 4th.
and i feel like i shouldn't be having 'nice' times.
times that almost feel normal.
if i could just completely let go of my past and get on with it.
i know it's okay...more than that....that i should have happiness in my life....it's all just very convaluted and confusing.
scared....well...i was scared because i felt a little bit of happy.
i am scared to feel good.
because i know how much it hurts when that good goes away.

Thursday, July 01, 2010

things.

i always drive with my window down.
even when it's raining.
i can't stop eating organic animal crackers from costco.
i read magazines from back to front.
if there's an article i want to read i read it.
then continue back to front.
haven't painted in almost two weeks.
that's a product of the boys being out of school for the summer.
i read somewhere, can't remember where, that if you let go of what you 'think' your life should be, and just let it be what it is, you'll be a lot happier.
good advice.
really missing having someone to live this life with.
to share things with.
to call.
text.
email.
hold hands with.
cuddle up next to and sleep with.
missing that person to talk to about things.
to have meaningful conversation with.
to talk about nothing with.
it's so weird to say, for ME to say....since i like spending time by myself....
i really miss being part of something. part of 'us'.
while i am strong, and can stand up for myself, and by myself.....
it was nice knowing someone was there for me.
when i needed him.
and even when i didn't.

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

small pieces.

be true to yourself.
say what you mean.
mean what you say.
do what you say you are going to do.
always.
believe in things.
strongly.
support the things that REALLY mean something to you.
but nothing else.
this painting is called 'small pieces'.
more of my sunset over water series.
yet another abstract.
passion is important.
i am truly passionate about art.
creating art.
looking at art.
if people cannot appreciate you for what you are, who you are, they don't need to be in your life.
each one of us is unique.
and important.
don't let anyone make you feel otherwise.
ever.
stand strong in who you are.

Friday, June 11, 2010

1 day down. 87 to go.

turbulent, heavy, hopeful.
another abstract.
when i painted this (a couple of days ago), life was feeling very turbulent.
heavy.
and hopeful.
all at the same time.
sunset over the water.
it's dark.
and light.
with an edge.
all at the same time.
which is what i wanted it to be.
being thankful, and mindful of who is in my life and what we have.

Thursday, June 10, 2010

self portrait!

self portrait.
first one i've ever done.
i could never do portraits on a regular basis.
not my thing.
but every artist should have at least one self portrait.
wanted to do something different.
something completely opposite from what i've been doing.
to free my mind.
to give myself different focus for a bit.
i especially like how you can see the stud in my nose. heh.
i have art journaled for a long long time.
art journaling is giving yourself freedom to paint. whatever.
pair that with however you're feeling at the time?
lay down those feelings, all that strong emotion.
words.
the power of words.
AND paint.
it can be powerful stuff.
i often put photographs of myself on my art journal pages.
mostly because looking at photographs of myself helps me figure out exactly what it was i was feeling at the time the photo was taken.
it helps me sort through the crap.
a self portrait??
that is a whole nother matter.
i look at this painting and i'm almost startled.
it's like....WHAM. there i am.
a big huge me on a canvas.
that is some scary shit!
i have been looking at this painting.
looking at the woman. me.
trying to figure out what this painting says.
i think it says only this.
here i am.
this is me.
THIS is who i am.

Thursday, June 03, 2010

painting i finished yesterday.

"Raw"
this painting, to me, is raw.
another abstract.
it's messy.
edgy.
and raw.
it's almost visceral.
again, i have typed.
and typed.
and deleted.
it's almost as if what used to help me....
figuring shit out.
here.
on my blog......
has stopped working for me.
my words no longer seem powerful.
or meaningful.
it's like i am disconnected.
still having a hard time adjusting to it just being me. and the boys.
james' death left a huge hole in our lives.
and i haven't quite figured out how to fill up all that empty space.

Thursday, May 27, 2010

three for three.

"Sunset"
i feel things deeply.
strongly.
passionately.
from looking at me from the outside, you would never know.
it's all going on...........inside.
sometimes so much so it overloads me.
shuts me down.
completely.
sometimes, however, it is a good thing.
a necessary thing.
it's just how i am.
it will never change.
and i wouldn't want to.
i've said all these things before.
i'm saying them again because they relate to this painting.
my third recent abstract.
it's bold.
messy.
powerful.
there are two things that make me feel.
instantly.
one is the ocean.
being on the beach.
the way it smells.
it makes me feel different.
it opens me.
the other is music.
sometimes i don't know how deeply affected by things i am until i hear certain words in a song.
the rhythm of a song can take me away.
music evokes STRONG emotion in me.
i had no idea what this painting would end up being when i started it.
i have to say, i was damn close to the zone.
i love how this painting turned out.
watching the sun set, being on the beach....
those two things are strong.
powerful.
to me.
almost every single time i paint i jam to tunes.
mostly DMB.
loud DMB.
it helps me not think.
which helps me paint.
the less i think the easier a painting is created.
fucking loving abstract.

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

two paintings in two days.

"Solitude"
another abstract piece.
the black is bold.
striking.
strong.
powerful.
yes strong and powerful are different.
serene.
i love being alone.
having time to think.
reflect.
to just, be.
to let your mind wander where it will.
this painting represents strength.
WANTING to be alone.
as a way to help replenish your soul.
to help clear your mind.
to try to find balance.
i will, i am sure, do a painting (maybe soon) which represents loneliness.
i have experienced a lot of that over the last year and a half.
not sure if i will stay in the yellow/black yellow/black/white theme...or if i will move on to different colors.
i really do love yellow and black together.
i love my studio.
it rains a lot here.
when i paint, i often paint with my windows open while the rain gently falls.
it's nice.
i like this painting.
it really does shout out strength and solitude (that which you crave/want/need).
not that by which you are forced into.
because your husband died.
and you are lonely.
loving abstract.
love love loving it.

Monday, May 24, 2010

feeling abstract.

finally.
a painting that left me feeling.
SOMETHING.
abstract.
full.
powerful.
last night, i sat, for a long time.
typing.
deleting.
ultimately posting nothing.
unable to figure out what the fuck is making me feel the way i am currently feeling.
too much inside my head at the same time.
too afraid to admit and acknowledge some of what is in there.
this painting is big. 36 x 30.

a couple of weeks ago i found a box.
full of photographs.
and keepsakes.
inside the box was this photo.
i took it when i lived in fort bragg, CA.
20 something years ago people.
i was young.
seriously.
like 12.
in the photographs from this time i really do look like i'm 12!
this is the trussell at pudding creek beach.
when i lived there, this was one of my favorite places to go.
after i moved away, i went back to fort bragg.
over and over.
it will always be one of my favorite places on this planet.
it's appropriate, i guess.
that i am posting this photograph, and the painting inspired by this photograph.
fort bragg (and mendocino, a little artsy village 7 miles south of fort bragg) is where james and i spent many of our anniversaries. my 19 year anniversary is in two days. i can hardly fucking believe it. may 26th. james and i would have been married for 19 years.
this painting is innocence.
the innocence of my youth.
when life was simple.
and fun.
and all about me.
full of parties, drinking.....
life was carefree.
and damn good.
time spent with a dude who was in the coast guard.
this painting also represents standing out.
standing alone.
not being afriad to be different.
to just be....who i am.
it is the first painting i have been truly excited about in MONTHS.
going to let it sit.
see how it feels.
but i'm thinking it's a done deal.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

conflict.

i am constantly at conflict wtih myself.
i love my children.
yet i long for freedom.
to NOT be a parent.
struggled with this issue for years.
that's why i was going to thailand.
part of the reason, anyway.
one of the things that has been hardest for me is how hurt the boys have been by their father's death. fucking duh.
he was huge in their lives.
and now he is not present.
on a daily, in person kind of way.
now he is only memories.
it breaks my heart to see all the other father's at tball practice while alexander's is not.
i am there.
but james is not.
james coached for ethan.
and can't be there for zan.
THAT is the shit that kills me.
knowing what the boys are missing.
like tomorrow.
when ethan has to go on his field trip without me.
he wants me there.
but i cannot go.
the field trip is after alexander gets out of school.
kindergarten is short.
so E must go off.
without a parent.
which makes him sad.
it makes ME sad.
i cannot be in two places at once.
i am stretched too thin.
being everything to them.
all the time.
right now, sitting in front of the computer i can literally feel the stress in my neck.
and shoulders.
my head hurts.
part of it is being tired.
part of it is just the constant-ness of being a parent.
never getting to sleep in.
being the only one.
i laugh when i think about how hard i thought it was before james died.
cuz dude. that was nothing.
when bad things happen it sucks.
you figure it out.
step by step.
in the end, it's all about how you handle yourself.
to those who think i haven't 'sucked it up', or, dealt with my unhappy circumstances, i say this.
walk a mile in my shoes. THEN you can criticize me. until then, shut the fuck up.
that last part was directed at my father, you know, in case anyone was wondering.
he thinks i'm not doing this well.
which is funny.
he doesn't even know me.
or my children.
and hasn't been here for us.
a second email he sent me.
as hurtful as the first.
i choose not to respond.
because it is pointless.

Sunday, May 16, 2010

things on my mind.

i have sat, and typed.
a few times in the last week.
then deleted everything.
currently filled with self-doubt.
working through it.
i saw a painting today.
a beautiful, raw, visceral painting.
an artist i have discovered.
with whom i am currently obsessed.
made me long to paint.
to really, truly create.
with feeling.
strong emotion.
if i could truly channel half of what i feel on the inside into my art.....
that would be amazing.
most of what i feel remains on the inside.
rarely shown on the outside.
my weekend was good.
but surreal.
filled with some of what i have been longing for.
yet at the same time soooo overwhelming.
i have felt disconnected today.
like i am living someone else's life, not my own.
weird.
and hard to explain.

Tuesday, May 04, 2010

*some* of the best things.

"rowboat"
painting i finished today.
love the perspective on this one.
the colors are dramatic.
unexpected.
i like that too.
some of the best things:
listening to it rain as i fall asleep.
taking a chance, believing in myself.....and painting.
not giving a fuck and speaking my mind when i am pissed.
hot hot hot coffee.
it seems to be therapeutic to me.
singing and grooving to tunes as i paint in my studio.
being so in to *that* moment.
feeling the music. inside.
letting it move my body. on the outside.
not thinking.
just painting.
walking away from a painting and coming back to it later.
with fresh eyes.
SO helpful.
jammin in my car as i drive.
being held by a man.
feeling his warm body and arms around me.

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

i figured it out.

unedited iPhone photo of a painting i finished today. "fishermen"
in person it needs to be viewed from about 5 feet away.
i am extremely lucky to have this life that i currently have.
went to coffee with bethany this morning.
then i went home and worked in my studio.
each and every day i will make some progress to make this all happen.

something has been bugging the crap out of me.
i've had this feeling.
this feeling that. just. wouldn't. go. away.
i finally figured it out.
i am afraid.
afraid of finding something good and having it go away.
afraid of losing it.
afriad it's not even there to begin with.
actually, i didn't 'just' figure this out.
i've known it for a while.
just wasn't willing to admit it to myself.
now that i have.......
i have to figure out what to do with this information.
cram it down, pack it in....way deep inside....like i do with all of the shit??
i'm thinking that's a pretty fucking good idea.

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

this post really isn't about him.

i find myself self-editing.
here, at my very own blog.
i'm not sure why this is.
okay. that's not right.
not so much self-editing, as being particularly careful about the things i talk about.
i'm not eloquent.
what i am is honest.
and open.
and i have chosen not to say much about patterson.
though i have thought a lot about him.
what attracted me to him.
what was good about him.
why we couldn't work.
he wanted to help me raise my boys. james' boys. our boys.
that, right there, is an amazing thing.
patterson came on hard and fast.
he could not grasp i needed slow.
he could not grasp where i am coming from.
a place of such deep sadness.
a place of pure hurt.
i have no better words to desribe it.
the kind of hurt and sadness that literally takes your breath away.
patterson didn't understand.
he didn't understand it was scary for me.
i don't think he is a bad man.
quite the contrary.
i think he is a good man.
i thought he might be slightly stalkerish.
after the first time i told him we couldn't work.
but ultimately, i think he was just misguided.
he was lonely.
so lonely he came on too hard and too fast.
i think he understands that now.
i understand what it is to be lonely.
i AM lonely.
i made him feel alive (his words, not mine).
he was falling in love with me (again, his words, not mine).
there were many things about patterson i liked.
but i couldn't say yes to him.
too many things weren't right.
but even so, i miss the idea of him.
i can't live my life like this forever.
i do things.
just do them.
think later.
though with him....i DIDN'T do that.
which was hard for me (even though i did so on purpose).
i think there will come a time when i won't be so willing to stop myself.
patterson wanted to get to know me.
to learn those little things.
he made me less lonely.
he wanted to be with me.
but patterson ultimately didn't get it.
it was too much about him.
even so, on nights, say, like last night.....
when i am feeling isolated, and lonely....
i still kick myself in the ass for sending him away.
for telling him no.
i question myself.
something i hate doing.
it's pointless.
this post really isn't about him.
it's about me.
standing up for myself, even if it means being sad, and a little bit lonely.
or even a lot lonely.
missing having someone i can call.
share things with on a daily basis.
missing someone i can text back and forth with.
in a playful way.
it's about me, knowing enough things weren't right.
and letting him go.
i could be spending every night with patterson.
but i am not.
and it was all my choice.
so today i am choosing to write about patterson.
hoping that i can let it completely go.
and quit kicking myself in the ass, questioning myself.
and yeah, i realize i didn't mention the boys in the kimberly/patterson equation.
that's an entirely different post all on its own.
i never EVER thought i would be single again.
i never EVER thought any dude would ask me out.
i never EVER thought i would have to deal with this issue in any way, shape or form.
i thought james and i would be married forever.
that we would raise our children together.
i think part of the reason i haven't posted about patterson much is the 'oh my god her husband died and she's already dating' shock factor.
but honestly people.
i have never EVER felt anything like this before.
and by this i mean james dying.....
it truly is THE most horrible thing that has ever happened to me.
coming from that place......
i do not apologize in any way, shape or form for any little bit of happiness that comes my way.
i know james would want that for me.