Monday, April 30

From the Porch

The blue of sky pops behind the bright green of the pine tree needles. The tree that has broken, 2 pieces have fallen, and other smaller ones behind it. Two years ago we burned the bigger pieces at Thanksgiving, starting the fire with a broom doused in gasoline. Waving around the fire stick to get the wet wood to burn. It shot up in a ball of flame and we all stepped back, mouths open, excited.

It poured just minutes earlier, thunder rolling through the sky, bringing billowy white clouds that would open to brilliant blues, the sun shinning down on the green grass. It needs mowing Dad would say. It was grey and cold the day we ceremoniously unwrapped his gravestone. The pink granite bright against the cloud covered sky. The rain started to sputter, a misty gloom. People told Sammy and me we did a good job unwrapping the stone. Maybe they meant we did a good job staying strong. I wanted to stand there and sob, there were too many eyes on me. The days can go by so quickly when you’re not recognizing each one as another passing, but stopping to say this has been almost a year brings you straight back to the reality of grief, of longing, of missing, of losing.

Yellow grasses flutter with the green as the wind picks up, gold and green, sparkling in the sun before a cloud covers it. I rock and watch the sky, the trees, the bushes, and the grass, notice the bright white of the porch railing and the now dry porch boards.

The Rocking Chair on the Porch

It is raining now

but I see sun behind clouds

on the horizon

Saturday, April 21


Walking to dinner, you walk the same speed as me, slower because my feet hurt from being in heels all day. Animated conversations over dinner, about the job I'm excited to be interviewing for, baseball players fame, and the bathroom flusher and tiles. We wonder about delivery, the pizza is so good, and pick up a to go menu on the way out.

We walk into a "everything you could possibly need packed into one" store on the way out, you oblige my desire to browse while rocking out to John Bon Jovi's Always. When the song is over your patience wears thin. You notice Lloyd Bridges name spelled wrong on a DVD on the way out.

We walk home, not having to hold hands or have our arms wrapped around each other, just being side by side. I suggest a cupcake and you heartily agree. They only have mini's left so we pop into Tasti D- Lite too. I think you've said it tastes like air before, but you don't mind you'll get a cone anyway. I look at you as we walk the last 1/2 block home. I'm so happy, we live together, have quiet Friday nights together, share good food together and after it all we go home together, our home. We don't have to cuddle closely on the couch, I can get under a blanket with my Real Simple and you can be happy to move about as you anxiously watch the Red Sox and Yankees play each other. This is us.

Thursday, April 19

Harder Now That it's Over

I'm listening to Ryan Adams' Gold on our new Bose sound dock. It makes me think of driving home from Squam during the summer of ‘05, following my parents through back roads of New Hampshire. The green lawns, the rolling hills, the fields that stretch for acres, bare except for the lone tree in the middle of the land, a stone wall running on either side of it marking the land, marking the time. I always wanted a hill like that near me, one I could walk through in a contemplative mood exploring the land as I sorted my thoughts. One I could bring a boy friend to on a warm spring afternoon for a picnic. I've driven by so many, all the same. They roll on for acres, are often empty, and usually have the one old tree marking the middle of the land.

When I first saw Shawshank Redemption I wanted to point at the screen and say, "Yes, that's it, that's just the scene I want at the lone tree in the rolling field!" It’s so romantic, isn't it? Not just in the typical definition of the word, but the English literature definition too. It’s a place to take lonely, tormented thoughts, not just to take a lover for a passion filled afternoon, or evening. A place I'd feel safe when I'm scared, a landmark to allow your thoughts to fill with memories, good and bad.

Like Ryan Adams. He brings my thoughts to that afternoon driving home, which was just a day, another ending to our Squam week. But then because Dad was with us, probably driving the other car, it makes me think of him. He loved Ryan Adams.

I remember being in the car with him and Matt in New York, talking about Ryan Adams, his newest album, how Dad would like to see him in concert but he hardly ever tours and its always a mystery when he does.

And then I’m there, in the car, looking for parking near the St. James theatre, city all around. Except I see a rolling hill to my right, with a large tree in the center and I go to it and sit by it. Alone, except I know Dad is there. He's in the songs coming through the Bose that I now notice I placed right next to a picture of him, he's at the tree. Thinking, this isn't fucking romantic- I'm dead and had to leave you all. Except, it is. We're left with your memory, your spirit following us and we get to imagine all the connections you're making for us. Parking spots multiple days in the row on our block, birds singing at just the right time, Herons flying over city landscapes with no water in sight.

Thursday, April 12

April 11th

I was sitting on the desk of a co worker- a few months earlier she had confided in me losing her mother when she was 14 to lung cancer- I swung my feet back and forth as I sat, “I just can’t imagine losing a parent.” She responded, “You can never imagine it and then you do and you just handle it.” She was so together, so smart, so mature, so with it… she had done it… if I had to, I would do it. I didn’t really let myself go there yet, I kept convincing myself it wouldn’t be me. I went back to my desk and the phone rang soon after, the call I’d been waiting for. It was cancer. I left work immediately, called Matt, headed to Concord Hospital. In the car I couldn’t focus, on anything. I tried some mellow, depressing, moody music, it didn’t help, I tried something update, poppy, dancey, I couldn’t handle that either. I chose to drive in silence instead. My thoughts swirling. What was going to happen now? he would be okay, he would fight this, people fight cancer all the time. I’m going to be optimistic, I’m going to be strong, we’re all going to handle this and get through it.

When I got there Dad wasn’t in his bed. He was downstairs getting a bone scan. I went down with my mom to get him. We were both speechless in the elevator. We stood in the cold hallway, leaning against the cool cement block wall waiting for him to be wheeled out.

I had envisioned myself arriving, seeing Dad in the bed, climbing in with him, hugging him hard and saying: “You’re gonna fight this, alright?” Instead I wheeled him back to his room, sat, all of us staring, waiting. Dad started his death talk, “I’ve had a great life, I’ve done some wonderful things.” I wouldn’t let him continue, I couldn’t hear it yet. What he would later say is, “I’m having so much fun living though, I don’t want to stop.”

Tuesday, April 10


“Do I have any famous relatives?”

“Do you? How could this possibly be coming up?”

“I’m doing a MySpace survey.”

“Oh, okay. Do you?”

“I don’t think so.”


“How do you spell Geometry?”

“G, E, O, M, E, T, R, Y.”


“What was the weather like on my birthday?”

“ahhhh, I have no idea. We were at your house, right? I think it was fine, but I don’t really recall.”

“It wasn’t snowy or anything, was it?”

Shakes head no

unrecognizable mumbling

“What honey?”

“It was in that add, you weren’t paying attention.”


“Am I moody?”

“Are you moody?”


“uhhh, I don’t know." Pause "A little bit. Yeah, I’d say you’re a little bit moody.”

“Good answer.”

“Good answer?”


“Okay, I’ll take that.”

Wednesday, April 4


Moving to NYC to do list and status:

Unpack: Done

Buy stuff: Done, only need Blinds for bedroom

Decorate: Done

Hang Pictures: Done

Open new Bank Account: Done

Open Joint Bank Account: TBD (to be done)

Explore Neighborhood: TBD

Find Favorites (restaurants, nail salons, hair place, pharmacy, etc): TBD

See old Friends: TBD (starts Friday with Abby!)

Have Visitors: TBD (First one is Jaimie this weekend!)

Find Job: TBD (had a couple of interviews though...)

Visit out of state and then come back and have this feel like home: TBD

My first week here I slept like a rock, I'd be manically unpacking and shopping during the day and then pass out at night, no thoughts to stir me awake, nothing to keep me up and anxious.

Into the second week I started to have restless nights, I'd lay down to sleep and just toss and turn and think about all the things to do, what we still had to buy, how much money had been spent, how fast April was going to fly by and would I find a job, that my Dad was dead. One night I wanted to get up, my typical sleeplessness activity, surf MySpace and write a blog full of emotion and darker thoughts and angst. But I didn't, it wasn't as easy. I had Matt sleeping next to me and I didn't want to wake him and have him worry, I would have to patter down a hall and into the living room, the computer wasn't on a desk at the foot of my bed anymore. So instead I sat up in bed, I let the thoughts swirl through my head, I almost wrote a full "blog" in my head, but I just sat, I let it work itself through without taking action. It helped, I lay back down minutes later and probably went to sleep soon after that.

Things are different here, its not the same life, I really am living this one though, sure having no job makes it different makes it seem vacation like, but many things are still the same and I'm adjusting to how they fit differently into this new chapter of life. I'm living in each moment, doing what I want in those moments, whether it be waking up depressed and just wanting to stare out the window, or waking up energized and wanting to get shit done. I'm doing what my body and mind want, taking the energy and using it in the moment. Right now I don't really have anything big to pin my thoughts out to look forward to, literally look forward to, I have these moments, this time to live in fully and enjoy and I'm making it work. No more in between times, no more just wait till we get to this date. I'm here, this is now.