Tears of Pain, Tears of Joy

It occurs to me, as with every funeral I attend, how fragile we are. How life has an end just as any book. And that with any tear of sorrow and pain comes a tear of joy.

Just yesterday I was attending the funeral of my partner’s father and as I sit at my desk this morning I am tearing up with joy.

Within a twenty-four hour period I am lifted up. God is good. The universe is good. Life is in order. Everything is a balance act and I find that the longer I live, in life, with my illness, as a writer, as a daughter or partner or any of the above, the more I realize this truth. It’s ying-yang, balance, tears of joy, tears of pain and always reciprocation.

Thankfully, there is not one without the other. I have gone for long periods of time, after grief and job loss, where there was no happiness. There were no smiles or tears of joy. Prolonged depression, severe catatonic like depression, does not dissipate quickly. Balance is not restored fast through medication switches and hospital stays that last a week. Still, eventually after enough treatments, perhaps ECT, hospital stays, medication changes, outpatient even, after enough time and effort and proper medical intervention, balance is attainable once again.

It’s not a life lesson, it’s a fact. I’m happy to have tears of joy this morning. I’m thrilled that in five hours I will give all the money I have and be a first time homebuyer. I will co-own a tiny, 900 square foot home in the town I grew up in. It’s not a lot larger than my apartment, but it’s a home, in a nice town, with a yard and a basement and an attic. I can plant flowers like I have done with my father since I was a child. I can mow the yard and curse at the imperfections of it all. (Life is progress, not perfection! So am I….)

I can buy bulk. This sounds silly but so true. When you have no storage space, you can’t do this. I can do laundry in my own home!!!! I no longer have to haul my laundry down flights of stairs to the laundromat and deal with change or laundry cards. HALLELUJAH!!!!!! This could be one of THE biggest perks of all!

No cranky landlords or rules or neighbors upstairs clonking around at all hours of the night and day. I swear they are wearing wooden Dutch shoes. Really, do they get them when they sign their leases? No drug dealers (don’t get me started)! We will have a dining room that can remain a dining room and an OFFICE. An office with a door.

All of this may sound shallow in light of my partner’s father’s passing. I realize this. And it’s true. Anything compared to life seems meaningless.

But with tears of sorrow, come tears of joy. For that I am grateful. For life comes death, that is inevitable. With sickness comes restored health in passing. That is a blessing too. Funerals cause me to reflect on my own mortality and how I was so close to my own death. My partner’s father was in so much pain, he had a host of health problems. My depression was not fleeting, it stayed for two years, but it did pass. I’m so grateful it did pass and I’m alive to receive life’s blessings today.

Signing off to do laundry (one last time in a laundromat) and take the rest of our savings out to close this afternoon.

Next post, I’ll have keys to my first house. At 43, wow, it took me awhile but better late than never, right?

It’s a good day, no strike that. It’s a PHENOMINAL day! May you have one too.

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Hello, my long lost blog…sorry I’ve been busy and neglected you!

Well it has been awhile, hasn’t it? The weather went from crappy to real crappy. I went on vacation and spent many happy days in the sun. Then surprise! Snow on the ground ever since we’ve been back.

Life has gotten so good. Book comes out in two months, a new house in one. (Finally, I’m a homeowner! I feel grown up now. Well, a little anyway…) Possibilities await on the horizon. Endless as they are in all of our lives. They hover above us as we unknowingly dream thinking they are far off. Not so… at least that’s what I’m learning to believe.

I have been pulled in different directions lately and have become good at focusing. It doesn’t mean I don’t get stressed out but I do believe I’m learning how to manage it better. Meditation helps a lot. Writing is always the consistent element, meditation is new. I’ve also rediscovered Coltrane and Billie Holiday. Ever since I wrote the rough draft of my first book, they managed to get stuffed in the back wall of my CDs and have been a wonderful reunion for me. I’m listening to Ms. Holiday right now. She was at the height of her career, on tour in Europe and boy can she sing like no other.

Sometimes I wish I could tour the 20th Century. Spend a little time in each decade the hit fast forward once I’d had enough. I might start in the twenties, why not, they were roaring. You know, spend enough time to entrench in the music and historical events of the day. Then when the good music fizzled or hardship came, hit forward like I was a CD spinning along.

So here it comes, I am nervous about the next 6 or so months. as I always am around a book launch. There is extra effort required. Mentally, I am excited and over the moon that it’s here, it’s finally here. Secretly, though, as soon as it’s out, I’m deciding what my next project is. I have manila folders stuffed with notes and beginnings of about I don’t know maybe 8 or 9 books. It’s a matter of what I want to write next.

I think I should write this, I want to write that, am I good enough to write fiction and will anyone offer me a contract for my fiction? I know my niche is non-fiction but there is fiction in me. Sure, I’ll disguise it and it will be packaged as non-fiction if that makes everyone more comfortable. Or I could use my real life experience and shoot for the moon with my first novel. I always like a challenge.

Off I go. It’s tax time. I’m so distracted until I get them done that I may as well file now. It’s the expenses. I can’t just add up my receipts. God no. I need to create a spreadsheet and morph in to a perfectionist. When, I’d like to know, did I bloom into a nightmare perfectionist? And if this is genetic, who in the heck did I inherit this from? That one is baffling and could take my whole life to figure out.

Back to Billie and her guitarist who has me moving right along with his solo. They don’t make this kind of jazz anymore.

Our book is on it’s way… Two Bipolar Chicks Guide to Survival: Tips for Living with Bipolar Disorder

Hi all,

We are so excited for our 4/22 release. It’s coming down to the wire. We haven’t seen the cover yet or the publisher’s website for us so for now it’s our amateur effort on wix. (thank you, feel free to tell me how bad it is!) So we’re cruising along here, getting ready for the next phase:

PROMOTION.  The trick is how to maximize exposure on a very small budget. As with all aspiring, struggling authors, that is the trick and it’s no small feat.

Especially since we are closing on our first house next week. It’s exciting, but nerve wracking, this whole process.It’s funny, my whole life I wanted to be published and own a house and poof: the universe responds and says ‘here it is, all in 5 weeks.’   I am grateful, I am overwhelmed and trying to make sure I get extra sleep. It is manic season, you know.

Off I go to fill boxes up with crap that i deem important. Books I’ve read (why do we keep books we’ve already read…must get rid of). My desk is nearly packed but take away the printer and computer and screen at the last second. You can throw my desk out, I found it by the side of the road anyway….

More updates later. It can’t be worse than my poor record of past. Like I claim, I am a “consistently inconsistent” writer. If you’re thinking that is really inconsistent, you’re right.

Ciao!