Thoughts before my birthday

Tomorrow I will really be mid 40s, and you know what?  I realize I’m good with that. It’s been overall a really good year, and a good decade of life thus far.  Oh, there are things I would still change in my life, those ‘if I knew then, what I know now’ moments, but I didn’t know then and have made peace with the idea that most of the choices that I have made were good choices for me, and if not good choices, well, at least it was what I wanted at the time.

But, I don’t have any real regrets. Some of the hardest, most painful decisions that I’ve made in life – even those made in anger – have proven to be the very best things of very bad situations.

So what has the first 44 years brought me?

  • I have now spent more time in an urban environment than a rural one. Sometimes I don’t like all the people around, but I hated the loneliness in the country even more. Still haven’t figured out a happy medium, but it’s okay.
  • I still don’t know what I want to be when I grow up, but I know I’m on the cusp of something big.
  • I have been out of the closet now longer than I have been in the closet.  I’ve got a rainbow flag on my balcony; I can be campy if I want to be, but it’s really about who I want to date. And if that’s not ok with you, fuck you.
  • I have learned that Family are those who choose to be in your life and love you unconditionally, not because they have to, but because they want to.  Some of my family is also my Family, but not all.  But I know that if I needed to pick up the phone in the middle of the night and say “I need help”, I’ve got a damn good list of people who’s response would be “I’ll be right there”.
  • I have a friendship that is 30 years. She’s my touchpoint in life, as I am hers. We might not chat forever, and then pick up the phone and talk for hours. She’s got the most dirt on me, because not only can I be honest with her, she simply knows who I was, where I’ve been, and how I got here. You have no idea how much love and respect I have for that woman, and if I ever need a safe zone to have truth thrown at me, that’s who I’ll go to.
  • I have had some fantastic teachers in life. Ms. Lassner taught me about forgiveness. Dr. Miller taught me patience. Father Ferris taught spirituality instead of religion. L’il boss teaches me how to talk about Dark Truths to others.
    • Some lessons have taken longer that others to understand.
  • I have officially lived with depression for 25 years. Unofficially, it was first suggested 4 years prior to that by a guidance counselor. I’m still here.  Most days are ok.  Some are damn fine. Those bad ones, I try and pull myself and landmark the shore of the past with the hope for the future.  But I work on it constantly now, where once I could’ve just let myself slip under and let go.
  • Because I had to suppress myself for so long, my twenties were the equivalent of teen years in a lot of ways. My 30’s were for beginning to accept myself as me. My 40s are all about starting life again.
  • I have had love, and I have had real love.  I had little loves that lasted, flirtations that couldn’t last as either one or the other was just not accepting of themselves, let alone another.
    • I had a love for almost seven years that proved to be a lie of sorts. Took another 15 years to sort that one out and realize I hadn’t done anything wrong except be naive.
    • Then I met Jaymz.  No expectations, no demands, just unconditional. A life of drama…and emmy award winning drama.
      • Now I’ve done the one thing he never did…live an extra year.  But, OMG, he knew how to LIVE.  There’s a huge difference.
    • Now I’ve had Jun, where one kind of love comes full circle to a different kind.
    • I have learned the heart is infinite, and you can embrace different people in different parts, even as you keep the memories of others whole.
  • Things that were important once aren’t. Some are. I value myself as who I am.  It’s okay to be weird… Why not see life from a different angle, n’est-ce pas?
    • Should I switch to a more monetarily rewarding role, I will need to have value in a humanitarian aspect of some kind.
    • Giving up a friendship that isn’t healthy is sad, and you’ll cry, but it won’t hurt in the long run.
    • Some people will find you toxic or the bad guy in their life. There is nothing you can do to change that view, and it’s not worth the effort.  It’s ok.  We can’t be the hero in every story.
      • You don’t have to like everyone…and they don’t have to like you.  I had that in the original language; it’s a proverb from another culture.

Life if for the living.  The dead come around sometimes in different ways, whether a sudden memory, piece of music, a butterfly.  Not just the obvious ones: there are erstwhile friends who I haven’t thought of in years, and all of a sudden their names and laughs are popping into my head.  I might be forgotten one day, and I’m okay with that.  We don’t all have to have our name on the wall of a pew or hospital or wherever.  When its time for me to go, it’ll be because my purpose is done.  Whether in a few days time tragically, or in 40 years time of old age; this journey is one of spirit riding flesh.  I don’t know what comes next. I’m not in a hurry to find out, but I’m not scared.

I’ve lost a lot of people in life.  It’s why I treasure the ones I have in it now, why I say “I love you” when they leave, and “call me when you get home”.

Tomorrow I’ll be 45 and that’s ok.




Eight years gone

My dearest Squish;

Eight fucking years. Hell, baby, I thought I wasn’t going to get to 8 hours, 8 days, 8 weeks without you. I know you come around sometimes. Thanks.  It does keep me going at times, when I need that little reminder that it wasn’t all in my head, and what we had was real.

There are days when people tell me stories that I have to shake myself and go “damn, I was there”. There are other days where every little detail comes flooding in, and if I’m not in a situation that calls for calm (and sometimes when I am) will burst into delighted laughter of a remembrance, or tears that you are not there to share things with.

There are the purely wild “Jaymerizms”:

  • Tea tastes better served in fine china, made by someone else. With cream.
  • Its 7pm. Kayvyn is late.
  • Pretty, pretty, pretty
  • What was that song by that guy?  Let’s call Beeberly
  • I could even out your bangs
  • It’s my favorite size…huge
  • Well FUUUCK that SHIIIIT
  • NEXT!
  • Oh my god, I broke my husband…again
  • Get in the chair
  • Where’s my hitter?
  • I love you so much my earlobes stink

There are lessons that you taught me that I do my best to have learned, some days better than others:

  • Everybody calls when they get home from the party
  • Give people a chance, and then FUUUCK them
  • A stranger is just a friend you haven’t…met….yet
  • If you fuck up dinner, pour another bottle of wine, slap the shit on a fancy plate and sprinkle herbs on it, another bottle after dinner and they’ll all be happy.
  • Blood doesn’t make family. Family are the people in your lives who’d do anything to help you, and you would do anything for.

There are moments in these past 8 years I wished I could’ve shared with you; there are people I would have loved you to meet; there was music to play (even new Stevie and Fleetwood!) and times that I could’ve have used that ultra-confident FUUUCK that to cheer me up and boost my confidence.

See, the biggest thing that you taught me was that life can be enjoyed on your own terms quite happily. That’s the trick of not being a “sheeple”… march to your own drum, off-beat, singing quietly and off-tune or loudly and on; listen to people who need listening to; give love to people who need a little love, but if they don’t give it back, don’t let them suck you dry; go outside with flare, because in a world of caterpillars it takes balls to be a butterfly; if people think you’re just a moth and not a butterfly, fuck it, you still have wings.

And those of us in the know, well, we all have a little piece of you inside of us. When we are together, we laugh a little harder and love a little fiercer, because we know that every moment we have with each other could be the last, so at least for that moment we live out loud.

I miss you, babe.  You had the stinkiest earlobes…


Your Smoochie

As always, the 3rd is for hate

I hear you there in the dark spaces, screaming of what you would do if let out of the carefully compartmentalized corners I have placed you in. You raged loose at the world threatening that if you could not have all things beautiful than no one could, oh the hateful things I have heard you whisper for hours upon  days as l forced you away from those that you might hurt with your bile and fury and self-immolation the anti-phoenix consuming yourself in a thing of horror; perpetual death.

Every year, the hate/grief surges forward. Logic and culture dictate that you should be resolved, completed, distastefully acknowledged and then swept away.  “Move on, just move on”, is the well-intentioned mantra. “Forgive and Forget.”

Forget? If I could but disentangle all the living horror wrapped around the pure memories of love/grief I would. I would swallow bottles of pills and undergo surgery if I could forget.

Forgive? FORGIVE? Forgive the self-centric and narcissistic? Forgive the incompetent and idiots? The blind-siding hatemongers?

  • student doctors, so proud that they can rhyme off 9 possible reasons why there are white smudges on the xrays, but can’t look at a medication chart to properly adjust a bowel management program;
  • screaming nurse yelling at a heavily sedated dying man, that he can’t talk to her like that, because she called his husband a fag;
  • ‘friends’ who shopped for a suitable knick-knack, while visiting both before and after death, claiming that they had given it to him, so they should get it back, including gifts that he and I had given each other;
  • RBC – the bank from hell that drained as much as they could from his account before I finally needed a lawyer to pit the CRA against them to do what should have been done in the first place.  Not to mention that the money in the account was actually mine, since that was the account we paid bill out of so I just topped it up.  That didn’t piss me off as much as keeping from being able to mourn properly with everyone else at the same time, so I could close off the estate;
  • Ashes. His brother screaming for the ashes before the cremation has taken place. Nagging, hounding, even after I said not until spring, and then bitching about his lost work time that he was holding. Telling me how I was hurting his father.  What a rotten person I was. Then when I send the overflow ashes to his dad, AS PER HIS REQUEST, it still wasn’t good enough, because he wanted it planned so he could be thered.
  • The sister-in-law who spent most of her last visit with us bitching about being a PSW and how she hated working with sick people. We were talking about the bad PSW we had in to help Jaymz, and had to get rid off. Then she hugged him tight, after we told them to barely touch him, as the cancer was in his bones and in the back. He started to cry from the pain, and she thought it grief, so she squeezed him harder and rubbed his back until I yelled at her.  But I was the asshole.
  • Shamma. Mother of his godson and did not even call for almost a year, after he told his godson he couldn’t cut hair anymore. Then she tries to come down the day I was forced to place him. Then she played nice-nice at a luncheon, until he went to the bathroom, and tried to read my beads for keeping her from him, as this was “her time” to spend with her son’s godfather.  Then she tried to show up the day he died and put pictures of her and her child up in my house.
  • Susie mother-fucking Goulding.  You righteous bitch. Bursting into tears at your last haircut, not being able to take the pain of knowing Jaymz had cancer.  Carrying on to the point that I simply had to leave as it was easier for he and I. Arriving at the palliative ward, demanding entrance.  I asked her kindly to wait so I could get an update from the doctor, see how Jaymz was, and then maybe have her up.  (She had driven in after being told not to come until she had spoken with me, but she called from her car when she was almost in the city.)She was already calling up to the room to speak to the doctor, as I was riding up the elevator. With all the commotion, I missed speaking to the doctor myself that last night. Knowing his wishes that if he was ever unconcious that he didn’t want people to see him, I went down and tried gently to say “no, he’s in a coma. No, don’t go up.”  Then so angered I could deny her access to her BEST FRIEND, she handed me the receipts for all the gifts she had brought.  And I didn’t punch her out when I handed it back and said “get yourself a refund”.  Then still not respecting anything, called for an update, found out he was dead, and called and left a cheery message that she would give us her staff discount at her flower shop for funeral arrangements.  Sweetie, darling… all his friends knew there was no funeral.  None of them had heard of you before.  You were a client. Your only redeeming feature was that you had a baby, and he wanted to hold a baby before he died.  The sound of your name still brings me to full rage.
  • I hated the consoling nurse who tried to shush me as I wailed hanging on to his cooling hand, as I tried to feel any sign of life beneath the crisp linen.
  • I hated the funeral home for neatly combing his hair into a part, and for lying him in the chapel with comforting music.

And cancer.  I fucking hate cancer.  I hate that I did my best and it simply wasn’t good enough; I hate there was no miracle drug or standard treatment worth taking; I hated that it took my love away quicker than I had found him.