Of Sound Mind and Body

sound mind

When it comes to this body, it proves me wrong every time, with surpasses and overpasses. Underpasses and near misses.

Another flu, another cold, another stomach virus, and I wake up feeling physically perfect. Emotionally and mentally? I’m a hothouse of crossed and twisted wires – beeping and going off at all different points of my body. “Warning. Warning.”

No broken bones and no strains or sprains or tears or pulls. In fact, I’ve never even been to an emergency room or hospital, other than to give birth twice. No broken bones and no strains or sprains or tears or pulls, but I did walk into Urgent Care when Scarlet was eight-months-old to get two measly stitches on my ring finger above the ring. I lost a battle with an avocado. Otherwise, I’m not squeamish or prone to motion sickness. I can be dehydrated for days without symptoms.

(Don’t ask me why I know that)

sound mind

Sometimes, often. Nothing bothers this body. I know this body.

When it comes to this body, the strength – the seemingly unbeatable strength – is only matched and met by one thing. The mind. The heart. And the dark and sinister places that have taken root and spread. Silent for years, or wrapping around and around and cutting off air supply and heart supply and and head supply. I can drink pineapple juice that expired eight years ago (it was an accident on Christmas Eve), and barely blink, but don’t ask me to let go of my kids at kindergarten drop-off – or ever, really – because I will drop to my knees. I will fall to my knees. This body can’t save me now. It doesn’t know how.

The signals and the wires have all gotten crossed again, wrapping and trapping and choking.

When it comes to this body, I know this body, and nothing you say is truer than my truth. I know that no dairy, gluten, sugar, fat can give even one tiny symptom, the way an emotional trigger can, but when those things all get together, it’s not pleasant. I know two sips into a cup of coffee when it’s not decaf, because it sets a course through my body quite like stress. And I know that a cup of coffee a day – the way I like it – makes me gain weight, but two bowls of ice cream a day don’t. And I also know not to eat two bowls of ice cream a day. I know that stress raises blood sugar and that pizza doesn’t.

When it comes to this body, I know I can still be surprised.

sound mind

By good cholesterol and low blood pressure. By another flu and cold and stomach virus passing me by, even after sharing drinks and sharing kisses and sharing being alive. And by being alive well past the last age my father ever got to be, when I thought it was written in stone in my body, the way it was in his. Inscribed. Signed, sealed, delivered. When it comes to this body, I’ll believe you when you tell me nothing is wrong. I can feel it in courses and rushes. Light and love and air and health. That doesn’t mean that I don’t have to take the time to rewrite the history I thought was served and certain.

When it comes to this body, I’m more wild and more adaptable and more hearty than you’ll ever know. Until I know it.

This is me linking up, as one of my favorite things to do, with Finish The Sentence Friday. This week’s topic is “When it comes to this body…” (5 minute freewriting) And there’s still time to write yours. Come link up with your spin: HERE.

What would you say?

Silver-White Winters That Melt Into Springs

favorite things

And these are a few of my favorite things.

Everyone always knows what I love because I have this strange, ambitious way of making that known. Des is like that too. I have total middle-child syndrome. Or maybe it’s just that I’m passionate and I feel like I owe credit where it’s due. I love moose and chocolate and cookies and ice cream. Rainbow socks, flannel pajamas pants, tribal printed leggings, and tribal printed sundresses that fit and hold me just right. I love baby animals and spring; picnics and lattes. I love being in love, in as many ways as there are people I love. Especially with my husband and my kids, as different as they are from each other.

favorite things

Isn’t it strange the way we ache continuously for each other? The way we ache for those that grow stronger and straighter – and in a direction opposite of us. Then there are the ones we ache for who grow toward us instead – stooped and aged.

Love, the ultimate mystery. Love, the ultimate. Period.

favorite things

On the second Friday of every month, Finish the Sentence Friday goes into listicle mode. I LOVE listicles. Who doesn’t love a good top ten list? This week’s topic is “10 things that are better than anything except being in love.” And I thought, how easy it would be to write ten things I love nearly as much as being in love. I just did it above without a second thought. Those words came faster than my hands could type. I thought more about channeling a feeling. A glorious feeling. Many.

It’s a feeling maybe like this one. It’s 5:00am and the phone rings in the dark house. The radiators are creaking with heat and you pull your covers closer. You hear the light footsteps from the third floor getting closer down the stairs and up and down the winding hallways to tell all five of you the news – you last – with your room buried in the back of a house. Deep and cavernous. Radiating with thoughts and heat. Your mom comes to your doorway last, knocks softly, and tells you that school is canceled. She opens your blinds and even though the dawn’s light hasn’t even touched on the softly falling snow, it’s like you can see it. You can hear it. You close your eyes and stay in your warm bed indefinitely. Now that’s a feeling.

Here’s my list of 10 things/feelings/experiences that are better than anything except being in love.

1 – An open road with a new mix cd (or 4). Or since CDs are getting dated, you can work with me here with music mixes!

2 – A tiny baby in arms and the knowledge that I have at least 18 years (maybe up to 70) of this painful, aching bliss.

3 – The knowledge I could do it all over again if I choose to.. for now, anyway.

4 – Getting back your bed after months of it being in storage or off-limits, due to renovations or moving or whatever else makes your bed go away. Or lying in your new bed for the first time! Knowing it’s all yours and feels like grown up magic.

5 – Having money in your bank account, and knowing that you can go anywhere you want in the world.

6 – What used to be a freshly loaded roll of film, but is now your favorite camera – or the one you most know how to use – and your favorite lens. Then that moment or moments when your “vision” is on fire – and the hairs on the back of your neck stand up. It’s the moment before you hit click, during that click, and when you know that the click captured your vision.

7 – The prospect of a romantic walk with someone you newly adore, which is sometimes as good or better than the actual walk. Similarly, it’s a hotel room and time with someone special. Room service breakfast in a cushy bed. Slow rolling time.

8 – When there’s no anxiety because you’re doing what you should darn well be doing.

9 – Time to yourself to read a book or magazine in a bath or near a fireplace.

10 – Being a Super Aunt! And of course, raising Super Cousins.

This is me linking up, as one of my favorite things to do, with Finish The Sentence Friday. This week's topic is

This is me linking up, as one of my favorite things to do, with Finish The Sentence Friday. This week's topic is

This is me linking up, as one of my favorite things to do, with Finish The Sentence Friday. This week’s topic is “10 things that are better than anything except being in love.” And there’s still time to write yours. Come link up with your spin: HERE.

What would you say?