Tuesday, April 8, 2014


There is comfort in hearing the predictable voice of someone you love on the other end of a phone line...and today, as I called my dad after hearing that one of his lifelong best friends had died early this morning, I found myself holding my breath as the phone rang, waiting for these words..."Canaday brothers".  I've heard them a thousand times over, yet today I needed to hear them...needed to hear my father's voice...needed that reassurance that comes with knowing he is right there where he's supposed to be.  My heart aches for him...this will be the second close friend he will bury in less than a year.  His words?  "Well, when you get old, your friends start to die."  I heard the tremor in his voice and I know the only man I've loved my entire life has cried today...for his friend...and likely for much more.  

My relationship with my parents is a strange one...to say the least.  If I allow myself to think about it I feel...well, I feel too much so I don't really let myself go there.  I'm pretty certain a therapist would have a field day with this one topic and could probably pin every one of my "issues" and failed relationships and lack of true direction on my parental disconnection.  I love them...so much...these two people who gave me life...whose DNA I share...whose personality traits I find myself both searching for and fearing...they are my history, my childhood, the source of my faith and the source of many of my questions.  I look at them and on one hand wonder how I ever came from them and on the other find myself craving the similarities...the shape of my hands (hers)...the length of my toes (his)...the shape of my eyes and the early wrinkles around them from squinting when I smile (his)...the shape of my face (hers)...the size of my ears (his).  And the much more important traits...the ability to forgive quickly (both)...the slow temper that explodes quickly and without warning (his)....the warm, love everyone, judge no one attitude (both)....the ability to read people (his)....

They loved me first...and maybe best...they hold memories of me no one else does.  And while I've pulled away for many reasons, I know my heart seeks them out when I'm uneasy or worried...even if I don't actually reach out to them.  

So today I reached out to him...maybe a little for us both...and maybe he found a little comfort in the sound of my voice when he heard "hi dad"...at least that's my hope.

Monday, April 7, 2014


we are each on a journey...some easier than others, yet none less important than the other.  it's the people we meet, the relationships we build, that shape our path, that help make us who we are along our journey that matter.  some walk in and out within the same breath.  others seem to move in, make themselves comfortable and eat everything in sight - even if we aren't expecting them or maybe even want them to.  some open themselves up to us, showing us the detailed, intimate layers of their soul without us even asking while others lack the ability to give us anything no matter how hard we try.  some seem to have the ability to see and cultivate the very best of us, looking past all the junk others have either discarded or seen as roadblocks in the past.  some want nothing more than to be with us because we make their life just a little bit better simply by being in it.  and, if we're really, really lucky...we find one or two who are able to see us as nothing less than the most true, beautiful form of ourselves possible and want nothing more than to do this life together no matter the hills, the curves, the obstacles, the...junk if only because the journey is so much better when done together.

i meet people all the time...lonely, exhausted, scared people who have no one.  their journey is one wrought with more twists and turns than most of us could ever imagine...and they often are walking it alone.  most of the time that is the sole reason i feel sorry for them.  it's not their pasts, their mistakes, their current state or even their many times scary stories that break my heart...it's the fact that they are doing all of it alone.  don't get me wrong, the reasons for this are often valid - family and friends get tired of bailing people out, especially when they keep making the same, hurtful mistakes over and over - but it's still sad.  it's also true that we tend to push those we are closest to as far away as possible when faced with some of life's worst messes...out of fear of rejection or embarrassment or even to protect them from us.  again...heartbreaking.

i am blessed with amazing people in my life...ah-maz-ing.  i have people who inspire me, who lift me up, to remind me of who i am when i find myself uncertain...i have people who help me fight my battles and give me the strength to deal with the junk life throws at me...i have people who stand beside me no matter what and cheer me on when something good happens...i have people who would move heaven and earth for me if i needed them to and people who know every bit of my past and will always be a huge part of my future. some have been in my life for as long as i can remember and some have only walked into the picture in the recent past.   for each of these people i am eternally grateful...each one is a part of my journey...sometimes walking in front of me when i need guidance...sometimes walking behind me when i need a little push...and sometimes walking right next to me when i need neither guidance nor encouragement but rather simply a friend to enjoy the ride with.  i'm not sure why i have so many good people surrounding me...kinda like how i have no idea why i was lucky enough to be born in the USA instead of some third world country where the focus of my life would likely be on survival rather than figuring out how to use my life to make a difference.  but, there they are anyway...we each surround the other when necessary and take turns learning and growing and giving and taking...doing this thing we call life...together.