Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Bird Alone, or A Votre Sante

The salad spinner works like a charm, so I'll fix a salad with the chicken for dinner. It's well worth the $20 I spent to have crisp, fresh salad.

I'm reminded that life is measured out in coffee spoons, to quote the Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock, the classic T.S. Eliot poem you can Google and read on the Internet. Today before I saw Dr. L, I ducked into Starbucks for a Signature hot chocolate and a duet of mini black-and-white cookies. I had arrived early to the Island. She is a true professional.

It's a Tuesday I just want to be alone. I wrote tomorrow's Connection blog entry, so surf on over in the late morning and enjoy it. For now I reach out and type in here, telegraphing the day's mood.

Yesterday I was in tears in the therapist's room, sitting on the beige couch, as I voiced my regret that I can't have children. Oh, I could. I choose not to because of the risk my kids would develop SZ, a genetic trait that runs in my family.

My grandmother's cousin had a break after she gave birth to twins, and her husband took the babies and left her, claiming she would be an unfit mother. My Mom's cousin has full-blown paranoia and he lacks the awareness that he has an illness, so he believes his delusions are real.

Aunt Millie, my grandmother's sister, wouldn't take elevators and was afraid to ride the subway. She lived in the same first-floor studio in Flatbush for 50 years. Shortly before she died, my cousin drove her home from a holiday gathering and said, "When you go inside, turn on the lights so I know you're okay." Aunt Millie replied, "I can't turn on the lights. They'll know I'm home."

That is the legacy that was handed down to me.

So I take comfort in my niece and nephew, glancing at their photos often when I'm at the computer, their pictures right in front of me on my desk.

I've chosen not to tell them unless it becomes imperative that I do so because their life depends on it. I want them to see me, their aunt, and not a sick person. I love them more than life itself, I love them the best.

This is going to be a short blog entry as I don't feel outgoing tonight, able to compose something sparkly and punchy. Sometimes all of us have to go within, or go to the wall, or wherever we go to retreat in solitude with our feelings.

One thing I want to end with. The last words my therapist told me last night: "You have a gift."

We all have gifts, and that is what matters: to use them wisely, and for the benefit of the world.

It's been said, "The life that is unexamined is not worth living."

I have a different take on things: "The self that is not expressed is the root of most unhappiness."

Be jubiliant. Live glorious.

A votre sante.


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