Goodbye to You, The Death of Me

Why don’t I want to say goodbye? Send you a text and tell you sayonara.

Afraid I suppose, of your reaction, from 7,000 miles away.

Although honestly, I’m afraid of seeing you in person too.

I don’t want to see you.

I want to have a week free of you. Of your texts, of your phone calls, of your presence near me. Of wondering who you’re sleeping with tonight, of who’s touching you tomorrow.

While I hate to point fingers and label blame, the reality is that something about you, affects me more than nearly anyone else ever has. In such a repulsive way too.

I don’t just lie a little, about eating lunch here or liking that color shirt or .. whatever, perhaps even little lies are big lies, but.. the big lies, the really big lies, are all around me when you are here. And you don’t seem to care or notice.

How can you not care?

How can you be so disconnected from us all? That you don’t care if you lie with us, near us, to us, about us..

And why is it so hard to say goodbye to you in spite of this?! Am I really so frightened of what happens without? Without you? Without your support… without your hook into my life.

I guess that’s it, isn’t it. Am I ready to let go of all this space, all these things, to be free. If that is, indeed, what it takes. And will I be free, or will I just find your replacement, another you to teach lessons to another me.

I say I am ready; because living this way leaves me so pale, so… faded. Yet I can’t send you the text I want to, the email I think I should. Or find you where you are, and tell you the truth, my truth, a truth.

That I finally understand you will never, ever change, in this lifetime. That once burned shame on you, 25 times burned… holy shit, what am I doing with you?!

I am scared, of what your response will be more than anything. If I will have to watch my back, look over my shoulder, check my mail, watch every truck that goes by, just to see if it’s you lingering there.

Though perhaps our past should show me more of you and your behavior than anything else.

I thought I’d feel angrier at you right now, but maybe that’s having some space. Or maybe that’s me trying to protect myself. To shield myself from the truth of your lies.

That you would lie so much, that you would tell such things about me to others, to other women you sleep with, that you would treat me this way. A way that if you did it to my mother or my aunt, or my best friend, I would consider how to end you. But to me? To me.. I fail to defend myself.

Someday I will say goodbye, and the death of me now, will be the birth of me, then.

 

Permanent Paw Prints across my soul, or Saying goodbye to best friends

Most days the four legged, furry, paw print leaving friends I’ve had throughout the years will cross my mind – and I will smile, fondly, sometimes bittersweet for they are no longer with me.

I’ve grown up with critters of all sorts around me, I believe that they, and the nature I often found myself wandering in (usually with them or because of their presence), were the saving graces that lifted me out of my dark nights.

We currently have two furry angels honoring us with their lively company (and a third outdoor friend that has decided to adopt us), we recently had to say farewell to a third feline friend. And though I think of him every day, some days the missing him crawls in deeper, the longing for golden glances, soft paws and gentle mews is like an infinite crevace.

I will share someday, soon perhaps, the story of his life with us – it was beautiful, and too short. But today is for saying goodbye, and for the how of it’s coming to us.

We had decided, earlier this year, to move back to our home state of California, to sunshine and green grass – less gray skies and muddy ground. Where I hoped the rays of the sun and the fresh air, sans mold 9 months out of the year, would help my cats as well as myself.

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In early March I had a dream, in which my cat (Mute, the name he was given by others, though he was NEVER Mute) came to me. In this dream he fell asleep on my chest as a I lay on the couch, with the clear message he would never leave my heart and would always be with me. I assumed this was a sweet reminder that while I traveled I need not worry of him, for he would be there.

He had a lump in one of his lymph nodes that had grown a bit, but he was showing no other signs of illness and the two blood tests we did showed only minor elevations – suggesting probable infection but not much else – we were told to just observe and see. When I flew to CA in mid-March to look for a place, Mute began to limp, something he’d never done before.

My husband got him in to the vet immediately, where they discovered he had lung cancer, that had progressed through over 80% of his lungs. The vet, and the specialists, were shocked and amazed he wasn’t showing any other signs of being so sick.

Here I was 900 miles away, trying to find us a place that I hoped would offer healing, unsure of what to do at this point. Keep looking? Stay where we are? Look closer to our old home? Chemo? Surgery? More natural remedies? What… can we do.

I knew now the dream of just a few weeks before was a gift, and a warning. He was letting me know he would always be with me, in my heart, even if not in physical being/presence. Though many of the cats, and dogs, in my life have journeyed with me spiritually, Mute was especially unique and tuned in to my energy in a way no other critter had ever been.

After weeks of watching him, discussions between us, God, the vets, friends & family… it was clear that Chemo** would only prolong his death, and his little body would be even sicker from it, we would gain only months and those months would not be healthy ones for him. We made the appointment for the vet to come out to our house and help us say goodbye there – one of the hardest choices to make.

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I agonized the entire time over this, if perhaps we should take him to CA and see how the healing energies here would help, or if we should stay and give him more time at home, or of course if Chemo was in fact the solution (though the cancer was too far progressed to be cured I thought perhaps that and prayer and energy healing would be … enough).

For days before the vets arrival we took him outside, sans harness & leash as we’d gone out with for years before (he had become a “privileged” indoor kitty with many outdoor walks and adventures), he wouldn’t go more than 20 feets past the house – not typical for him at all. And the sun? Graced us with four wonderful days of sunshine like we hadn’t seen in almost a year…

The day of the vet visit, we spent more time outside. When he wen’t back in to rest (he was sleeping so much more than before) I tried to ply him with his favorite treats, catnip, salmon bits and bonita flakes. He wouldn’t touch any of it. And after I tried the third time he turned and looked at me, in a way that only he could do, and I knew… he was ready to go.

Even if I wasn’t ready to let him go.

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He was barely 8 years old (give or take a year) and we had thought he’d be with us another 8-10+ years, that he would outlive the “senior” cat in our house and be an older brother to the youngest, most recent rescue addition.

His departure was quiet, and peaceful, aside from my tears and sobs after he was gone.

In the months following I would have many dreams after a day of deep sorrow over missing his presence, in which he/his higher self/guide would visit me briefly and let me know I needed to let him go – that holding on to him in this way was holding his soul back from the .. whatever he was doing after he’d moved on. That he would come back in his time, not mine.

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I wished to dream of him, to have him in my life somehow, but I understood. And I would let the tears flow, and then focus on the good, healthy, joyous, light energy of his life, and our lives now before going to sleep – so as to leave his soul to rest. (literally)

He has come back the past couple of months in my dreams, as a visitor and companion, even last week my husband said he had a dream with this beloved cat – he is with us now and then, hanging out with all of us, two legged and four paws.

It is so hard to let go of the illusion of this physical manifestation, that even though I have experienced the energy/souls/spirits of many others (animal and human in particular) throughout my life, I so dearly miss their presence in my waking hours.

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I miss their kind words, the smells in their kitchens, their smiles, their soft fur, gentle purrs, sweet chirps, tender kisses and just their general… presence on this planet. I know that I will see them again, if not in waking hours, or in my dreams, then in the next phase of our friendship – whenever that may be, wherever that may be.

But I still miss them, every day, in little and big ways. And saying goodbye changes, but does not get easier.
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Mute gave to me the example of loving others, even after they’ve hurt you, abused you, abandoned you. That one could still love and be loved. His presence and life, showed me a light in the darkness, and I will be forever honored by his decision to be with us – to make us his family as he did.

Though I still imagine him out in our new, wonderful yard, and sometimes I swear I see him out of the corner of my eye…    I hope, and I pray, I can share that with others as he shared his life, and love, with me.

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**Please know, we had been giving him many natural/herbal supplements for some time before this, due to his ongoing issues with other health concerns (many infections and such from his early life as an almost solely outdoor cat) – Chemo was not the only possible healing route for us – simply one of the only ones the vets could offer beyond what we’d already been doing.

Why some Dreams must Die

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When I was 11 I made a statement to the universe that I wanted to work at Microsoft someday. I recall clearly standing in the Seattle public library, with an idea of this fantastic company, a place full of computers and endless creative possibilities in my mind.

When I was 19 I was offered a job there, and turned it down, at the time it was not a fit. 2 hours of commute each way and minimum wage for a front office position just didn’t quite appeal to me. But my dream didn’t die then.

Then when I was 25, and lived across the street from the MS campus, with some serious experience behind me, I accepted a position with my dream company. It was a wonderful, but tedious, position – I assisted one of the teams in the MS Research division – and I’d sit and listen to students and professors and employees outside my office talk about theoretical physics, computers, algorithms, I loved this part of it. On the other hand I had a co-worker who loathed her job, and the company, and was so bitter she poisoned the water of the well I was drinking from.

I left without hitting a year, the image I had of my dream was surely tainted at this point, but it wasn’t gone yet.

I returned some months later, after many wonderings along the way, if I should really pursue this company the way that I was. Yet I’d found an awesome group to work with and that did help, a lot.

I will shorten this part of the story, not because it isn’t worth telling, but because it is too sad and I still carry too much of that sorrow with me, to want to delve too deeply in to it tonight. I spent another 3 1/2 years with MS, and I left because my dream had died.

My dream had failed to evolve with me, with the company I had longed to work for, with the job I loved to do. And I held on to this dream so tightly, that even as it was killing me (literally, the stress was killing me, I was suffering organ issues and terrible pain among other things) I couldn’t let go, I couldn’t admit that this dream, had to die.

And I had to walk away from it’s corpse.

I spent the better part of 2 years trying to change things there, trying to change myself to fit perfectly, so that the dream could live – and I was dying to do so.

Now, I don’t regret, for one moment, my choice to follow my dream there. To have the experiences I did, positive or otherwise, to meet the people along the way, to learn and grow. I don’t regret much in my life…

However I regret not letting go of the dream, not letting it die, and creating a new dream to follow. One that expanded and allowed for the changes that life inevitably brings to us all.

From my time there, from birth to death of this dream of mine, I learned that I can do just about anything, and succeed, anywhere in the world. It was a bit like my childhood, if I can make it through these years? I can make it through the next years of my life no sweat.

There seems to be an either/or approach to our waking dreams in society – we either cling on to them and Follow them, “Never give up on your dreams”, or we ignore them, what’s the use, I can’t have that.. No ones successful following their dreams, or.. get your head out of the clouds.

I believe there needs to be a middle ground. So that we follow our dreams, like a trail up the mountain, but understand that sometimes? There are not just rocks along the path, but boulders, crevices, and once in a while, the path just utterly dissapears. And rather than giving up, packing it in and going back the way we came, or pushing on in to dangerous wilderness, sometimes? We need to stop, reconnect with our direction, our dream, our path. And allow it to be adjusted, understanding we are exactly where we are meant to be.

And we don’t have to fight this, we don’t have to struggle with the change, we don’t have to put on blinders and pretend it’s all ok either.

Dreams need room to breathe, to evolve. A seed is a dream unborn, it will break free of it’s current casing and become something wild and free, if we will step back and allow it.

Pieces Undone

Have you ever tried to piece yourself back together? Perhaps after a divorce, your own, your parents, a job loss, a parent (friend, lover, child) dying, a betrayal, or just a really terrible, seemingly damned, long day?

After some dark moment you realized that you were shattered, and that at some point you’d have to put the pieces back together. Maybe not today, or even tomorrow, hell, maybe not ever, because where you are right now… who cares about the pieces?! It’s broken… and that’s all you see, all you know.

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But then you find yourself slowly coming back to the mess, the shattered bits on the floor, that you’ve tip-toed past day after day, night after night. And you realize, it’s time – maybe not to grab it all and figure it ALL out, but it’s time to find two pieces that fit together, and see how that feels. Perhaps after that you’ll have energy to find another piece, that matches the broken edges of the other two, that slides together back in a way that almost has you fooled into thinking these pieces, were never really broken.

You only have to slide your fingertips over the edges, like your tongue sliding over the cracks in your teeth, the dryness of your lips. And there you feel it, the little crack, the tiny crevices no one else will ever notice.

Do you ever look at the pieces and say, No, that one I’m not using. That one doesn’t fit. It’s too shattered, it was ground in to dust, and there’s nothing I want it for. I will remake the whole without it. For every day I look at what I’ve pieced together, I will know.. that piece, I left behind, I let it go. I’m stronger, better, happier, or just.. OK, as I am now.

And I will do as the Japanese do, I will fill the space in with gold, I will not hide the broken pieces, I will call them out. As one site observes of Kintsugi “the japanese art of repairing with gold to create a perfectly imperfect piece of beauty”.

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Yes, that, right there.. A perfectly imperfect piece of beauty.

It has become more valuable, because it was broken, because it was brought back together, because the hidden is now seen. And there is an art in this, a strength.

What once was broken, can always be mended.

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