Beautiful, isn’t it? (image credit goes to “at fifty-three dot-com)

In my mind, I am standing right smack in the middle of those trees. It’s cold and eerily quiet, and I am barefoot in the dirt. Surrounded by tall living creatures with branches I wish were arms, extending into hands with fingers I beg to point me in the right direction. That’s not how it’s going to play out though. You know it. I know it. We all know it. 

Recently my thoughts are drifting back to the day I left Alabama, and drove out West. I’d planned it for a couple of weeks, and packed the night before. Said all my goodbyes on the way out-of-town, and pulled onto the Interstate at 11:45 am on June 30, 1996.  Ironically, Tracy Chapman was singing “Gimme one reason to stay here….and I’ll turn right back around”  on the radio. Go figure. No magical signs appeared, and nobody came running after me, so I kept driving. Exactly 2 days later, almost to the minute, I arrived at my destination in the San Fernando Valley.

My new life. How exciting, right? I was scared shitless, but I’d made up my mind, and was determined to make the most of this adventure. I’ve been here ever since. That should tell you something: I’m stubborn. Things haven’t gone exactly as planned, and I’ve had my share of disappointments alongside many accolades and accomplishments. Peaks and valleys. Hills and canyons. Kind of the landscape of California. And when you move to the City of Angels, you learn quickly, it has a sink or swim mentality, and it’s up to you to dodge the sharks. So far, I’ve been lucky….but then again, I don’t get into the ocean very often….lol.

When I drove out, I brought several boxes with me. Figuratively, and literally. My literal boxes contained keepsakes, clothes and books. My figurative box was full of creativity and talents…my trinket box dancing, acting, writing, sewing, teaching, etc. Some of them are still evolving and becoming realized and I’ve been here 16 years.  In one way or another, I use all of my creative skills every day. Teaching my daughters how to navigate life, writing this blog, dancing whenever the fuck I want, sewing the quilt of my existence, and acting like I have it altogether. But acting is a deceptive trade, and I am facing a cross-roads…..which means I clearly do not have it altogether. Asking for guidance is never comfortable for me. Asking for help throws me completely for a loop. I’d love to do both, but I don’t know which tree to turn to, or if it will be the right one. This I do know….

One path is safer than the others. One path is tricky and full of obstacles. One path flat-out sucks. One path is enchanted, but long and uncertain. 

Oh, and did I mention I have a Sugar bean, a Butter bean and a Sweet Pea in my knapsack? Yeah. And I have to make sure they are watered and fed, so they may grow along the way. I have to chart a course sooner rather than later, or else the trees are going to turn in on me, blocking all the paths in every direction, and I won’t be able to see the forrest…for the trees.

Maybe I need a break. Like this one so I can clear my head before I drop to my knees and beg God to show me what to do.

Right now, I’m just going to dance it out.


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  1. I loved this! Beautiful, and bothersome. I hope you figure out what it is you need to figure out. And i hope it is graceful and not agonizing. But I do think there is always a song that sets the stage when you take a trip, or have a big life event. My last song was Brass Monkey by the Beastie Boys… Still trying to figure out wtf that meant.

  2. I hope you find your moment to take a break – that was a beautiful post and I’ll be linking to it in my next “thankfulness” post.


  1. […] brothers, in the Theme Thursday crew, and especially for Lori, over at The Next Step, for thinking this post, was worthy of a guest feature on her blog yesterday. She even did it without my knowledge, which […]

Give it to me straight. I can take it :-)

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