Sometimes I’m torn between just wanting something so sweet and wanting something that fits into all of my little boxes. There are so many things I try to tick off each finger that I imagine I simply couldn’t settle without. Maybe it’s a weird way of comforting myself; someday everything will be perfect and I will find just what I’m looking for and it all will have been worth it. But this is life people say, and nothing happens as planned. Who knows that better than a planner? So you change your plan and you fantasize about the new plan. But I’m a dreamer too, and I want no life that lives without spontaneity, so I find a way to feel comfort in change.
I live for the small moments while I hope for the big ones. She realizes she is stronger, he kisses his son on the top of the head, they lazily hold hands near the ocean, you try something new, and I learn more about compassion. I notice these moments around me and they matter. Sometimes when the small moments matter you appreciate the big moments even more. And when you’re at a loss for the big moments you start to appreciate the small ones.
I’m masterfully impatient, and being aware of it doesn’t make it any easier. I hold myself to high expectations that others hate to be held to as well. What can I say, these are some of my faults. I can’t pretend they don’t get in the way, but I do my best. The truest friends will love you despite your faults and help you when you’re working out life around them. I have these friends, and to some, I am that friend. That’s what matters to me. When everything else is out of place those friends keep me grounded. Those friendships give me so much to be grateful for and they help me shift my focus from negative thoughts to positive outlooks.
Mostly I’m happy because I choose to feel happy about my life right now. But choosing to be happy doesn’t mean you’re always happy, and I’m realizing that. Sometimes I feel really sad, and sometimes I feel depressed, and sometimes I feel like something is missing. But a lot of the time I feel good and I try to remember and focus on that when I can. The rest is inevitable so I try to just let it happen.
This week I’ve been thinking a lot about compassion and putting love out into the world instead of judgment, negativity, anger, frustration, and assumption (we all do it at times, and I’d like to do it less). It’s interesting to change your negative thoughts in the moment you’re feeling them about people, to positive. Maybe it’s ok to forgive people even when they haven’t asked for forgiveness because everyone is working through their own stuff. In only the past two days I have found that having more positive thoughts about other people actually makes me feel better.
I know this kind of stuff can sound preachy and spacey and like bs. I’m not trying to tell you how to live or think. I’m just talking a little about what works for me sometimes. I’m experimenting with this “mindfulness” stuff I used to be so cynical about and this is where it’s leading me, for now.
This really is hot off the press. We were messing around with some music after playing at Empire the other night and I pulled out some lyrics I’d written a while ago and had forgotten how it went, so just started re-working it. And Ryan started playing around with some stuff and after about 15 minutes we looked up and smirked at each other and knew we both felt good about what was coming out of it. But it was only a chorus and a verse.
So last night I rifled through some other old lyrics I wrote and either never put to music or didn’t finish and found some that worked with the song. Then we practiced it and recorded this for references sake.
Yesterday I ran out to Stevens Ave and wound around Evergreen Cemetery. It was breezy and cool and there were barely any people there. The best part about no one being there is that when a fun song comes on my ipod I can bust a move in the middle of my run. Oh ya.
In other news I ran 9.25 miles on Sunday and 10 miles yesterday. So fingers crossed, maybe this whole IT band nonsense is mostly behind me.
This is what I did last night. I see it as most likely a first verse, but possibly a last verse. I normally write entire songs at once so sometimes writing one verse at a time makes me anxious that the rest won’t come together later. We’ll see what happens with this.
I haven’t done one of these for a while, but today I felt that swelling of gratitude in my chest and wanted to share. Today I’m grateful for:
My college girlfriends Last weekend I got to see “my girls” from college. We haven’t been together like that probably since college. It’s amazing to be around people who make you tick and know every inside and out of you as a person. Like a warm quilt on a cold night. I’m one lucky gal.
Lazy summer days Today I enjoyed a sunny Friday off with a friend. We laid in the sun on the grass looking out over Casco Bay for three hours with some little lads popcorn and fancy overpriced dark chocolate.
Playing in a band I’ve been writing like crazy and it feels so refreshing and rejuvenating to have an outlet for all that creativity.
Getting healthy again My knee seems to be on the mend and a 10 mile run is hopefully in my future very soon. A big sigh of relief and a little prayer to whatever helps the world go ‘round.
last weekend was my dear friend Saly’s wedding to her boyfriend of 10 years (!). It was nothing short of completely lovely.
When it came time to throw the bouquet the DJ asked all the single women to come out to the dance floor. There were only four of us, and all of us had gone to college together (Lesley University). We looked around at each other awkwardly and realized there was one thing we hadn’t learned during our undergrad…
I walked over and asked the DJ to request that all the unmarried women join in. The floor quickly filled up. There is a picture from the evening that shows the bouquet in the air and the girl next to me with her arms stretched out. I’m next to her with my hands at my sides clenching my bridesmaids dress. Priceless.
It’s 10:30pm and my apartment smells of fresh dill, vinegar, mustard seed, and garlic. I’m making refrigerator pickles. I have done enough pickling over the past few summers that I’m not going by a recipe, I’m going to wing it. It’s all the more exciting because you don’t know what you’re going to get. I took a flashlight out to my raised bed here at the apartment to pick dill heads. It’s cool and quiet outside. I love that the garden is there producing day and night, ready to be harvested whenever I darn well please.
During the winter I dream of these kinds of nights, and here they are.
(yes i realize that i might have overdone it a bit on the mustard seed. I’m still not ruling out masterpiece)
I don’t think most people get it. I have been training for a marathon that is almost two months away, since May. My life has revolved around this training. Every part of my life right now is compared to how I need to prepare for that day’s, or the next day’s, or the end of the week’s run. My longest run was 17 miles and I felt great. This entire process has made me feel incredible; invincible.
Then along came this mystery pain. my left hip and left knee are not working well together. It seems to be iliotibial band syndrome. Google it, I don’t want to explain it. But it is keeping me from running any real distances. Last week I took four days off. four days off. I have only taken two days in a row off once since the beginning of May. Mentally this feels something like depression. Imagine the one or two activities that define you as a person, and then imagine not being able to do that anymore. It is a bit of an identity crisis. Yesterday I went out and did six miles and by the end my knee was noticeably uncomfortable. I wanted to do ten miles by Wednesday and get back on track for my 19 next week. This would have only put me a week behind schedule. Now I don’t know what I’m going to do. Maybe try physical therapy this week? Would it even make a difference? I don’t know.
People keep saying it will be ok, just take some rest, don’t worry, i’m sure it will be fine like I have a headache, and it all just feels insensitive. I think it is hard for people who don’t enjoy running to imagine it being important to someone. I feel incompetent and incapable. It feels like my whole life is shifting. I can’t physically do what I need and want to be doing right now and it’s breaking my heart.
For a few months anyway. I want to travel around the US with my acoustic guitar playing music at lively summer festivals, and doing yoga, and wearing leggings everywhere I go. She makes it look so good!
"Deb Talan and Steve Tannen began writing together the night they first met and soon formed THE WEEPIES. “We were fans of each other. When we met, there was an electric connection that made us both nervous. After the show, when everyone went home, we stayed up all night playing songs for each other, drinking a bottle of wine and trading an acoustic guitar back and forth in a tiny apartment,” says Talan. "That night has lasted ten years so far," adds Tannen."
I had a feeling this was going to happen. Things did not go well this morning.
Friday I started feeling it a little walking around town, that sharp pain in the knee. I had it off and on last summer, but at that time I could afford to take a few days off. I probably need new shoes, but my training schedule doesn’t stop while I wait for them to arrive in the mail.
You may have seen me hobbling down Forest Ave this morning at a 10 min/mile pace and my head hung in shame, or whimpering up the State St hill. What a disaster. 19 miles turned into only 6, and even that was probably too much. Now I have to email my coach at Maine Running and hear him tell me once again the importance of taking it easy.
Time for a hot shower, getting back into bed, and icing my knee. Sometimes you gotta take life as it comes…
“Maybe you won’t be a successful novelist, or even a good one. At least you are trying. That, would you believe, puts you in a rarefied one percent of our kind. Maybe less than that. You aspire to something better than the normal rat race. You may not accomplish much, but it’s the attitude that counts. As with mutations: 99% of them are bad and don’t survive, but the 1% that are better are responsible for the evolution of species to a more fit state. You know the odds are against you, but who knows? If you don’t try, you’ll never be sure whether you might, just maybe, possibly, have done it. So you do have to make the effort, or be forever condemned in your own bleary eyes.”—Piers Anthony (via writingadvice)
Friday I drove to my parents in time for dinner. Mom cooked up some fish and rice for me. It was a beautiful night. I wrote a new song, and am in love with it. Slept soundly for 9.5 hours. It was bliss. In the morning my dad and I got breakfast at this small local diner. I knew everyone else there eating, so I got to catch up with some people. Then we drove to an independently owned music store so I could get a hard case for my guitar.
Got home, played some guitar, my mom made me homemade pesto from basil in the garden, went for a run, then went to my friend Mary’s parent’s house to pick high bush blueberries. They have probably 30 bushes just dripping with berries. It’s a tradition that we pick together every year, and then we lay on the grass and swing on the old wooden swing set. It was a perfectly breezy sunny day and the air was amazing coming across the field to join our conversation.
Came home and had dinner with my family (my aunt is up), got to see my brother and meet his new girlfriend, and went out to do a fuel drop for a long run the next day.
Got up at 6 on Sunday to run at 7 with our neighbor. We did a beautiful 16.5 mile run, half on dirt roads will roller coaster hills. We were done by 9:30 and then it was all sunshine and perfectness.