About Me

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I write, mostly to keep my head from exploding. It threatens to do that a lot. My blog is the pixelated version of all the voices in my head. I tend to dive into what connects me to God, my community, my family and my doubt. I do a lot of searching, not as much finding. I’m good with that. I have learned, finally, to live comfortably in the gray. In the meantime, I wrestle with God, and my doubt and my joy.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Thanksgiving 2010

The sink is broken.

I say that as if it were 100% factual, as if I knew something about sinks and their state of repair.  Or disrepair.  Whatever.  I'm guessing that it's broken because I don't think it's normal for water to gurgle and seep, with infinite slowness, as if reluctant to slip down the drain.  I can see it winking at me, this pool of standing water (and just how the hell can water stand?) just inside the drain.  I can tell that it's laughing.

I'm also thinking it's not entirely normal for water (and various other solids) to geyser up from the second sink when I turn on the disposal.  No; I'm pretty sure that water in sinks is designed to go down rather than up.  Or out.  Or stand, or gush or ooze malevolently.

So--- the sink is broken.

I think I could take the whole sink situation if it weren't for the dishwasher issue.  It is less a dishwasher and more a dishrinser at this point.  Sad to think that I have to wash the dishes before the dishes get washed.

And don't get me started on the electrical conspiracy running rampant through the walls.  I have, like, elevnty seven outlets dotting the walls.  I was so relieved when we moved here that I wouldn't have to play the exciting game of Socket Overload, considering the building is older than dirt.  That feeling lasted right up until the time I had to actually plug something in to said outlets.  Some work.  Sometimes.  Of the two plugs per outlet, one works.  Sometimes.  And then, in holiday spirit, they both work.  Sometimes, the two plugs do a weird mindmeld kinda thing, so that the plug that has worked forever is now dead and past redemption. Yet its twin, who has been, apparently, for show only, now lights up the room effortlessly.  Sometimes the wall switch works with one plug in an outlet.  Then both plugs, and then every outlet in the room.  And then back again.

It's like those light boxes that moved and grooved to a song, creating patterns based upon the rhythm and flow of the music.  The intermittent electricity in my house is as amusing as those boxes were.  Good thing I had the walls painted before moving in.  I have visions of crumbling plaster and long snaky, snarky wires in a rainbow of color decorating every room in the house.

What else?  Given time (and let's face it: I seem to have that in spades these days), I could find a thousand  grievances and glitches, all those minor annoyances that set teeth on edge and blood to simmer and make me twitch a bit.  I can forget to breathe, because it's always just one more thing.  One more thing in an endless procession of things that tumble end over end and gather all together, piling in a tangled jumble of One-More-Thingness, an insurmountable, overwhelming mass of Mess.

The house.
The bills.
The car.
Nate.
My job.
The bills.
The money.
The lack thereof
The holidays.
Sickness
Health
Bills
Dating
Not dating
Did I mention bills?
Nate
Nate
Nate

The list is endless.  Eternal.  There is always one more thing that needs attention.  Every petty thing on the list fights for supremacy--- notice me!  fix me!  I am drowning in this clamoring sea of minor demons.

I know, I know--- it's not as if this were an apocalypse of woe.  It's a garden variety list.  It is the stuff of life.  No klaxon-call, no cacophony of noise, just the constant murmur, like the tide: a steady in and out, back and forth motion without rest or pause.  I tell myself I cannot breathe. I don't know where to start, which to start.  In the immortal words of Roseanne Roseannadanna: "It's always something!"

And just when it threatens to consume me, this List of all Lists, just when I think I have reached the edge and feel the vertigo pull before toppling into the chasm of tedium and pettiness, a whisper: "You have some high class problems there."

It stops me cold.

I want to argue with that voice (and I suspect it is my own, an echo of some wisdom heard in the hallowed halls of AA.  Dammit).  I want to rail against the sentiment, and wallow in the pure drama of my litany.  It's bad!  Yes it is!  My life is hard!  I have issues!  I have problems!

What I have is a roof over my head.  Heat in the winter and cooled air in summer.
What I have is food on the table and a car about which I can complain.
I have people in my life who give me the courage to soar.
I have a God in whose I hand I can rest when I let myself.

My mother's favorite saying comes back to me: I used to cry because I had no shoes until I met a man who had no feet.

I have blessings beyond measure.  Family.  Love.  Life.  Yeah, it's been a tough year or three.  I have mourned much, lost much.  Most of the loss has been stuff.  Some of the loss more profound.  I miss my brother more than I can say.

But I am surrounded by light, when I remember.  I can live my life as a prayer, when I remember.  I can share the blessings I have been given, when I remember.

And so, as Thanksgiving approaches, I remember that I am grateful for all the gifts that are part of my life.  The good and the bad stuff.  The people, the problems, the glitches and the glittery, dancing hidden blessings that flit like butterflies.  All the delight, all the amazement and awe: it is there for the asking.  Even without asking, those blessings are there, waiting for me to catch up.