Love Letters

This Valentine’s Day, I’m inspired to write love letters.

I know, I know, I HATE this holiday!

Why participate at all?

I guess on some level recognizing the love in my life resonates with me even if the holiday reminds me I’ve been single for fucking ever.

I was thinking this year I would write love letters to my family.

Tell them how much I love them and how much they mean to me.

Really personalize each letter.

Let my family and birth family know how much I love them.

Because they really are AMAZING people and I’m lucky to have them in my life.

And then I’d start in on my friends.

Because Lord knows that friends can be as close as family sometimes, if not closer.

I’ve got a lot of friends who support me who I’d like to send a love letter too.

What started me down this path, you ask?

Well I was on Facebook the other day watching people post public comments criticizing two people I love very much and I thought to myself that the only way to combat that kind of trash talk is to shower my friends and family with love.

And that’s exactly what I’m going to do.

Relocation

Today I got a message from my friend Barbara.

She had a dream I met a guy and we moved to San Diego.

In her dream, she cried because she was going to miss me.

I assured her that I’m not going anywhere.

I’m a Bay Area baby and I love the bay.

But I’d be lying if I didn’t say I’m tempted to move somewhere OTHER THAN THE UNITED STATES at this time.

With all the polarization that’s going on in the country, I wonder if we aren’t headed for some sort of civil war with our neighbors.

And of course I worry about escalating violence in the US.

Maybe I should move to Norway, the country with the HIGHEST quality of life.

Maybe I should move to Sweden, where the women are treated as equals to men, and I (sort of) know the language.

I have a friend who moved to Australia with her love.

Perhaps that’s another good country to move to.

And my friend Michelle lives in London, England with her husband and her dog.

I could see myself moving there.

The bottom line is, I’m not going anywhere but I certainly have THOUGHT about what I would do if I wanted to move.

With my kids almost fully launched, the OPPORTUNITY to move elsewhere does present itself.

But I’m happy where I am for the time being.

Barbara has nothing to worry about.

I don’t have a love story

I don’t have a love story.

And that’s okay.

I don’t need one.

The love in my life is so overflowing from other sources, from my family and friends, that it seems unbearably selfish to wish for more.

So I won’t keep wishing for a love story.

I already have too many to choose from.

Let me tell you some love stories.

My dad once bought me an enormous basket of every single type of fruit that Lunardi’s sold because I cried postpartum that all my fruit spoiled while I was in the hospital giving birth to my rainbow baby, Duncan.

Or my 15 year old birthmother who had to make an impossible decision about putting me up for adoption.

How heart wrenching to give up a beloved child.

There’s the time my sister-in-law cried with me because I was heartbroken over a breakup.

She felt my suffering like it was her own.

And of course, there’s the time my sister and I giggled as we sat in the back of a car in a hotel parking lot, drinking beer and thinking we were being unobtrusive.

We were SO obvious!

There’s my mom who spent countless nights staying up late, baking cookies for a bake sale or putting the final touches on a costume or wiping my fevered forehead.

And my cousin used to invite me to visit her on weekends because she knew I was alone and had no one to hang with,

So you see, I’ve not devoid of love.

I’m flush with it.

I don’t have a love story because I have love stories.

Confronting mortality

Something strange has happened.

Three men I dated suddenly passed away within months of each other this year.

They were far too young to die.

David was in his early 60s.

Steve was 58.

Bob was 47.

I confess, I’m more than a little shook at the suddenness and finality of death.

It’s made me think about my own life in ways I wouldn’t normally think about.

What do I want for my funeral?

Who will be there?

Do I have a long time until I pass or will it be swift and sudden, as with them?

There’s no doubt they have left behind family and friends who are suffering from their losses.

Steve had a son and an ex-wife who he was very close with.

Bob had three kids.

And David was a newlywed.

Although I can barely stomach the idea, it seems important now to at least provide my family with guidelines for my funeral or memorial should anything ever happen to me.

I want the quilts I’ve made to be brought to decorate the service at Burning Man.

And I’d like for my children to both speak about me.

And my friends Michelle, Barbara, and my cousin Jennifer.

I want everyone to wear bright colors.

None of this black nonsense.

And at the end, when everyone is processing out, I want Israel Kamakawiwoʻole’s What a Wonderful World/Over the Rainbow to play.

I want to be laid to rest with the ashes of my dogs and my children Douglas and Ruby, who preceded me in death.

Kinda morbid for a Tuesday blog post, but there you have it.

I’m confronting my own mortality.

One lucky lady

My birthday is officially over.

Let me tell you, it was SPECTACULAR!

Over 40 people joined my birthday zoom to wish me a happy birthday and listen to the bawdy songs of Rachel Lark.

I myself had a blast although the lyrics to The Unicorn Song did ring a little painfully close to home.

LOL

I was really touched when we went around the “room” and everyone shared how they knew me and what they loved most about me.

Apparently, I’m a very loving and creative woman who is a great mother, friend, and confidante.

I was humbled by all the compliments heaped on me and I swear the glow will last me until my next birthday.

The prize for knowing me the longest went to my friend Scott, whom I met in pre-school and who happens to SHARE my EXACT birthday.

That’s more than four decades of friendship, my dears!

The prize for telling the funniest story went to Suzanne who remembered when she accidentally used my microfiber towel at Burning Man to clean up a mess, thereby earning a chagrined “Oh. . . that was my only towel” comment from me.

Apparently people seem to think I have a calm demeanor.

And I tell funny stories on my blog.

So from the bottom of my heart, I want to thank everyone for making my Covid Birthday so special!

I really am ONE LUCKY LADY!

Puppies

Let’s just go ahead and acknowledge my love of all things Swedish.

Since before my trip to Stockholm in 2018, I have loved Sweden.

After all, what’s not to love about a country who gave us ABBA, the cheese slicer, and The Swede?

And speaking of The Swede, he’s adopting another puppy come December.

A female.

Which means he will be able to breed his dogs to get puppies.

And I think he intends to do just that.

So besides having a new car, a new motorcycle, a new fiancée, a new home, a new hot tub, a new dog, and a new puppy, he will now be breeding more PUPPIES!

The thought of puppy breath and soft velvet noses makes my peri-menopausal ovaries shudder a little with pleasure.

Me thinks it may be time to adopt a four-legged friend for myself.

CHEESE!

My birthday celebration officially began on Halloween when I friend of mine took me to Carmel to pick up cheese from The Cheese Shop.

We literally bought about 12 kinds of cheese, mostly hard cheese from Europe.

I was reminded about my Cheese Is Love post.

Once again, here are my friends doing the sweetest things for me.

Truly a birthday to remember, and it hasn’t even started already.

I knew I was in heaven when I walked into the store and found actual honeycomb being sold.

And CHEESE!

Oh the CHEESE!!

Wall upon wall, refrigerator after refrigerator of soft, ripened bries and blues and Mimonette, and Raclette.

I was BESIDE myself with joy.

We bought wine and retired to my place where we then had a socially distanced cheese and wine picnic.

Can you just tell I’m tickled pink about getting to eat ALL THAT CHEESE?!

Because I am!

I’m telling you, the birthday is off to a beautiful start!

I love you

Three words I’d love to hear someone say to me.

Not that I’m unloved.

It’s just that people don’t TELL me as often as I’d like.

My mom.

My sister.

My Barbara.

My Nadine.

My kids.

Today, someone unexpected told me they love me.

Of course, there was a lot of alcohol involved.

But given how many times I’ve reached out to my friends and declared how much I love them, simply because I wanted them to know, I guess turnabout really is fair play.

It was SO nice to hear.

And I course, I love them right back!

Woot woot Ms. Lark

Well, it’s OFFICIAL!

I’m happy to announce that the illustrious Ms. Rachel Lark will be performing her brilliant, bawdy brand of songs for my birthday.

For my ACTUAL birthday!

I couldn’t be more pleased.

I have seen Rachel perform live in-person two times:

Once at Burning Man.

Once at a private burner party.

Both times I was blown away by her clever lyrics, challenging subjects, humor, and lofty commentary on modern life and relationships.

Although this won’t be in person, it’s the next-best thing and the best gift I can give to all my friends and family who show up to wish me another entertaining spin around the sun!

Birthday

It’s my birthday in less than a month.

I’ll be turning 47 this year and covid is really putting a damper on celebrating.

I wish I could share a meal with friends and go to a movie or out dancing.

Instead I will probably be at home.

Doing nothing except eating a nice dinner with the family and sharing a cake (no candles, naturally).

I’ve had enough birthdays now to be relatively blasé about them.

Some years I want to celebrate, some years less so.

This year I feel like CELEBRATING.

We’re alive and living on a rock hurtling through space with a giant nuclear fusion reactor nearby.

Why NOT celebrate how amazing that is?

This year, I’m thinking of arranging a virtual birthday party for myself, complete with zoom link and funny hats.

Yes, that’s right.

Funny hats encouraged.

I could also see if my favorite bawdy songstress is available for a Zoom performance!

That could be nice. . .