A Gentle Landing


I’m being attacked by a pug. A black one. (Not that that matters.) She’s much more interested in having me play with her rather than in allowing me to send you this blog. I mean she literally has her warm tummy pressed against the back of my left hand while I try to type this, the weight of her squat body is pressing my hand into the keyboard. It’s like running with those Velcro-on sand-filled leg weights from the 80s. Remember those? I bet my typing strength on my left hand will exceed that of my right by tomorrow. Perhaps I’ll have to do some compensatory exercises with my right to bring it up to par. Oh wait, I think the right was already at an advantage. Nevermind.

I’m staying with my friends King and James in Glen Rock, New Jersey. Its about thirty minutes outside of the city. It’s been a very gentle landing so far. I haven’t even made it into Manhattan yet. I have an appointment at the VA tomorrow so I’ll have to go in. I’m pretty excited about seeing My Lady again. I’ve missed New York so much. I did kiss the ground at LaGuardia when we landed in case you were wondering. No one seemed to notice. Another among the millions of reasons I love this city.

King and James’ home is beautiful and they treat me, if this is possible, like visiting royalty and yet like family at the same time. I guess since we’re all queens…. Bad joke. I’m in my bedroom writing to you. The entire house is furnished in antiques.  I’m in a canopy twin bed that’s against one wall. It’s an old farm house (like New England old, not California old) but the windows have been replaced so it’s cozy warm even though the ground outside is covered in snow. I wake up looking out a window that is inches from my pillow. The trees (the bedroom’s are on the second floor) are filled with snow. The bed, with down comforter, is snuggly warm so I start the day blinking out into a scene from a Currier and Ives painting. Every so often, the New Jersey Transit train passes. The tracks are only a couple hundred yards away. The pug’s gone now, replaced by a large charcoal cat. I guess it was time for a shift change.

Tonight I spoke to a graduate level Gender Studies class at Seton Hall University. What a great welcome home that was! I spent two hours sitting with these young scholars, talking about issues that are important to me, reminded of how refreshing it is to be among smart people talking about important things. The ideas around gender, gender politics, identity constructs, power, rhetoric, and theory to include queer theory are so interesting to me. They drive so much of what is happening in American society and politics but almost no one ever talks about them. Most are too busy immersing themselves in the “our side vs. your side” banter that pours out of popular media outlets ad nauseam. Tonight was a welcome respite. I’m grateful.

I’m going to workout with King in the morning before heading into the city so I’m headed to sleep soon. I’ll take my laptop with me to Manhattan so I can write in town tomorrow between appointments. I want to go to a function in Harlem tomorrow night. It should be incredible. I’ll tell you about it after I’ve attended. My friend’s supposed to be putting me on the list.

Thank you for hanging with me on this journey. I know it’s been rough at times. There is still a lot of uncertainty about what’s next but at least I made it here. I’ve got to continue to rely on Spirit to lead me toward the next right step. I’m willing to work, I’m talented, I have a mission, I have goals, I’m teachable, of myself I am nothing but when I get out of my way great things can happen.

I’ve continued to attend support group meetings around the underearning stuff. I’m reading more about the phenomenon and reaching out who have gone before me in recovery. I have an action partner as of today. We’re going to check in each morning at seven around our action items. We’ll bookend each day whether or not we’ve done the action items we committed to since the last time we spoke the day before. The action items are listed underneath each goal. Remember, that’s how I set up the process back in September when I decided if I couldn’t kill myself I was going to have to find a better way to live. Tomorrow I’ll start by reading him my goals list as it is. Then I’ll get busy on putting action items under each goal. (I plan to pray for guidance as to what those might be.) If an action item appears not to be working, I’ll change or modify it. If I find myself unable to do the action item, I’ll call someone to process the fear around it until I can manage to step out and do it. That’s my plan. Keep me in your good thoughts and prayers.

The radiator is hissing and making a soft knocking noise. I hear one of the boys snoring in the next room and here comes the next New Jersey Transit. It’s a peaceful night. I bet I’m going to have some awesome dreams.

See y’all tomorrow.

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