Sunday, November 25, 2012


This Thanksgiving, I can say I truly gave thanks on this day of reflection.  It is simple:  I have love; I have family and friends - good, kind people in my life.  I have a home, a job, no debt.  I have my beautiful cats.  I have my health and I have a creative outlet.  I have everything.  I can't emphasize it enough - I consider myself blessed.

So on Thanksgiving, I simply said "thank you". 

Saturday, November 24, 2012

Let the wind take care of it

I was thinking this morning that the best possible lesson I've learned is to not be mired in the past, surrounded by memories, especially negative ones.  Maybe that's an over-obvious thing but it seems to me many people that I know live in just that fashion.  They are driven by unhappy experiences, bitter feelings and negative associations.  To a great degree, I used to be that way until it was made very clearly and very wisely that the past is just that - the past.  It isn't coming back, and contrary to what most people say, it can't hurt you - unless you've committed a tangible crime or caused physical harm.  But if you've experienced a bad relationship - be it a lover, friend or family member - it can't hurt you.

Letting go is so much easier than one would think - the difficulty may actually be in seeing that it frees you; people are comfortable in their anger and unhappiness.  It gives them drive - in a thoroughly non-constructive way.  And if you've let go - then what?  Do you automatically become
happier overnight?  No, but you do over time.  I've experienced it first hand.  And there is nothing more true than release equals freedom.  There's no pain in letting go of unhappy emotions concerning someone who may have hurt you - it means you don't have to have anymore weight holding you down and simultaneously, that person no longer has any kind of control over your life.  So again, why allow negative memories remain status quo in you?

The reason I'm ruminating is this:  I was once "accused" (the only word, especially in the tone it was said) of being "too rational" and "too mature".  Rather than laugh, it still makes me think "what does that really mean" and at the same time, I'm proud to be guilty of such a thing.  That was two years ago.  I noticed that the person who had said this appeared today on a Facebook posting that I was "tagged" in.  Honestly, I didn't bother reading any of the comments, because it's a posting that equals going back into a past that does not matter at all in the overall scope of my life.  I'm not one of those who waxes nostalgic or wanting for when I was younger, freer, etc.  And that's what this thread seemed to imply.  But I thought about a few of the people who were included in this thread and although they have nothing in common in the here and now, they certainly cling fast to the "old days".

It made me think about the statement about rationality and being unemotional.  Does this make me cold?  I don't think so.  It just makes me observe that I know what the pitfalls are.  The person who called me "too rational" is the embodiment of someone who lives strictly in the past; speaks only of then and not now and carries all the unhealthy, excess baggage of a life on a treadmill and nothing more.  It's all about yesterday for that person - which fuels the anger, the bitterness that comes across very easily and openly.  Who wants or needs something like that poisoning their well?  I certainly don't and it led to the rational decision to extract that person from my life in total.  And so on.  It didn't begin just there - I've cleaned emotional house, good and thoroughly.  But there you go - being sucked into the vortex of someone else's negativity will only drag you down, so you move away from them.  It stands to reason.

For those I'm close to - genuinely close to - my emotions are never hidden.  But as I get older and learn more, there has to be a sense of know what to say, how to act, when to react and so on.  You can't just conduct your personal affairs in an unfiltered manner; I'm sorry.  It isn't appropriate and it isn't for everyone.

If nothing else, it's another positive reminder that I don't use the past for anything except perspective and if necessary, a reminder of what not to do or how to be, in case situations arise that may be uncomfortably familiar.  And none of what I said above is meant in judgment of anyone - I was reminded of someone, another time, a different mindset and subsequently, I observed and exited.

Monday, November 19, 2012

Nothing can hurt me

Obvious as it is, it's a lyric from Big Star.  It's also the title of the documentary film that I'm proud to have contributed to.  This movie, and certainly, the band has brought me much joy.  But it's also poignant in light of the recent hurricane that hit my home area and our neighboring states.

I'm very lucky.  The worst we endured was three days without electricity or heat.  The shore area, which is a five minute drive, is someplace I haven't even ventured to go near; I don't know if I can handle seeing the devastation.  The most I've done is drive to Trader Joe's and back or to Target and back.  A clear, unfettered route that shows none of the ravages from Hurricane Sandy.

If there's one thing I've observed from these events, it's an incredible outpouring of support from other Staten Islanders.  For all that we've swallowed with criticisms and derision, this truly, is still a community in the truest sense of the word and for that, I'm still proud and grateful to be an Islander.

But still - nothing can hurt me.  And nothing will.