Monday, October 20, 2008


JustMehas been talking about boundaries lately.
What she talks about strikes so close to the bone. I want to stick my fingers in my ears and scrunch my eyes tightly shut and yell, “la-la-la-la – I can’t hear you!”

The problem is, I hear all too well.

I hear my personal boundaries crashing all around me.
And, I have to admit that often, I am the one who is leading the charge to dismantle them.

So I ask myself why and, as if by magic, my friend Wanda emails me, providing me with both the answer and the inspiration.


When I stand up for
myself and my beliefs,
they call me a

When I stand up for
those I love,
they call me a

When I speak my mind, think my own thoughts
or do things my own way, they call me a

Being a bitch
means I won't
compromise what's
in my heart.
It means I live my life MY way.
It means I won't allow anyone to step on me.

When I refuse to
tolerate injustice and
speak against it, I am
defined as a

The same thing happens when I take time for
myself instead of being everyone's maid, or when I
act a little selfish.

It means I have the courage and strength to allow
myself to be who I truly am and won't become
anyone else's idea of what they think I 'should'
I am outspoken,
opinionated and determined. I want what I want and
there is nothing wrong with that!
So try to stomp on me,
try to douse my inner flame, try to squash every
ounce of beauty I hold within me.
You won't succeed.

And if that makes me a bitch,
so be it.
I embrace the title and
am proud to bear it.

B - Babe
I - In
T - Total
C - Control of
H - Herself

B = Beautiful
I = Intelligent
T = Talented
C = Charming
H = Hell of a Woman

B = Beautiful
I = Individual
T = That
C = Can
H = Handle anything

Woo hoo!
Just the kick in the rear I needed.

I'm reclaiming my boundaries and re-introducing them to the people in my life.
And if they want to tell me I’m being bitchy, they certainly have that right. And I have the right to be a Bitch In Training Clearly Hearing herself and striving to be a Beacon of intelligence Totally Centered and Honoring of herself.
What kind of bitch will you be?

Sunday, October 19, 2008

Proper Medical Care

OD called me. She's worried about a weird rash on her back and she wants me to make an appointment for her with her doctor. I gloss over the facts that she doesn't live with me, that I don't know her daily schedule and that she knows exactly how to make her own appointments.

I don't remind her of these things because I am over the top excited about the fact that, after years of no primary care physician and months of searching, I have found a doctor.
She is a naturopath and she is fabulous!
She listens to me.
She makes suggestions that are non-invasive and fairly easy to accomplish.
She works with accounting to make sure that I am billed in such a way so as to make the most of my medical insurance coverage.
I can’t say, “I love her!” loudly nor often enough.

I tell all this to OD and ask if she wouldn’t rather see my doctor.
I suggest it because OD’s doctor, is a pediatrician.
A wonderful woman who has held our hands through years of ear infections, bouts of the flu, chicken pox, strep throat, tonsillitis, warts, mono and any other of a number of childhood illnesses. We have relied on her through all of it, and she has never let us down, but, at nineteen, many of OD’s ailments are no longer really within the realm of a pediatrician’s expertise.
I point this all out to OD.

OD shakes her head into the phone, “No thanks,” she flips.

“Why?” I plead. “You’d really like her.”

“Because she’s a naturopath.” OD says this in a sing-song, Valley-girl lilt, as though no further explanation is needed.


OD sighs. “A naturopath will want me to change my diet, which I already know is bad, or take herbs, which take too long to do anything, or give up tanning, which will never happen…I jut want some good ol’ western medicine that will give me a pill or a cream and push that rash right back down where it came from.”

LOVE that girl.
LOVE her self-awareness.
LOVE her honesty.

OD will be visiting her pediatrician next week…and she made her own appointment.

Saturday, October 18, 2008

A Place for Everything and Everything in Its Place

Mo, my dragon, is omnivorous. Her diet is mostly greens but she enjoys an occasional side order of bugs.
Sometimes, I harvest earthworms for her from the garden. This evening though, I head to the neighborhood pet store and buy a bag of crickets.
I shake them into her aquarium home and Mo becomes a wily hunter. The crickets scatter. Mo follows, on the tips of her toes, a dancer. She catches a cricket in mid leap and smacks her lips with satisfaction.

The Buddhist in me feels guilt over Mo’s delight.
The mother in me blesses the creatures that sustain my baby.

Usually, Mo is a dancing fool until she is once again the sole inhabitant of her aquarium. Tonight, though, Mo tires of chase and she leaves two crickets behind. They hide in the shadow of her log. Mo pulls her heavy body to the top of her basking rock, close to the heating lamp. She is asleep almost before she stops moving.
The crickets lie silent.

My house is quiet too. My children are with their father. I am looking forward to an evening of tranquility, an oasis of calm amidst a week of turbulence.

I snuggle into my comforter and reach for The Antelope Wife, the novel that has been waiting too long for my attention.
The cover is stiff. I gently ease the book open and the round smell of freshly bound pages surrounds me.

Chirpity, chirp, chirp, chirp.

The crickets begin to sing.
I smile and imagine a wide-open meadow. A creek bubbles in the distance. The moon is full and her golden halo softens the world’s sharp edges.

A siren breaks my reverie, reminding me I live in the city. A police car rips through the night and red and blue lights spin across my wall.

Chirpity, chirp, chirp, chirp.

The crickets go on. They fill my room with their talking and my book rests open on my lap.

My neighbors come home. The car idles in their driveway and my mind wanders as I wonder why they don’t park. The engine is a gravely rumbling, a large cat stuck in a satisfied purr. It fills me with warmth. I pick up my book.

And the crickets go on.
Chirpity, chirp, chirp, chirp.

I can’t read. I can’t sleep.
The city and the country are waging an all out battle in my bedroom.

I root for the city.

It’s not that I don’t like crickets.
I love crickets…in the country.

I love their soft touch upon the earth as they join together and weave music through the stars.
I love they way they make the air feel crisper and softer at the same time.
I love the peaceful blanket of calm that envelops me when I breathe in their song.

In the city, though, the chirping is jarring and unsettling.
The noise fights against the city sounds, hammering with heat and pins.
It is a burr under my skin that itches and stings with its incongruity.

I blast out of bed and flick on Mo’s light, hoping she will wake up and eat. Her eyelids flutter as the light screams at her to open her eyes and, for a blessed moment, the crickets are silent.
Mo settles back into her dream.
The crickets overcome their silence.

Chirpity, chirp, chirp, chirp.

The noise bangs into my body and knocks against every nerve as it echoes endlessly down through my toes.

I slam my bedroom door and thump down the hall to my daughter’s empty room. I slam her door shut too and then open it once more so I can slam it again. I stomp my feet and clench my fists and shake my head.
It doesn’t help.
The muffled sound of the crickets slides under the door and explodes into the room.

Chirpity, chirp, chirp, chirp.

I collapse into a puddle of prickles.
Morning cannot come soon enough and Mo had better be hungry.