Miracles & Luck Tuesday, Jul 12 2011 


It’s been about six weeks now since we moved into our little castle – long enough for us to get acclimated and learn to stand on our own feet. We passed a couple of milestones just the last couple of days. I’m not big on numbers. As a matter of fact I HATE numbers, and I am the very last person on the planet you would ever want balancing your checkbook. I’m not a big gambler either, though I live in an area where a lot is tied to the gaming industry. From what I know, there are certain combinations of numbers that are considered lucky. 7 and 11 are usually lucky numbers while 13 has always been considered unlucky. There is a wealth of information for anyone interested in the whole superstition, but the actual term for the phobia or fear of Friday the 13th is friggatriskaidekaphobia. I don’t believe in lucky or unlucky numbers but then again I’ve never won the jackpot either. I do know this though, anyone who trusts their life to dumb luck or a crap shoot is a friggan idiot. I don’t believe in luck, but I do believe in signs. And I believe in Miracles as well, ESPECIALLY when Miracles can serve as a sign. When I left six weekes ago, I really had no idea where this journey would take me, but someone once told me that life is about the journey not the destination. If I’d have known where I was going I might not have seen the signs along the way.

Anyone who was following the blog a few weeks ago will probably remember Our Little Miracle. She doesn’t know it, but I learned a lot from watching and speaking with Miracle. She was my little cheerleader, literally. I moved out on my own uncertain of what the future would bring, but I found a little Miracle next door. More than once, she brought out a pom-pom or doll to show me and never just talked about herself. She asked a LOT of questions and freely gave her own answers and advice whether we asked for it or not. One day when she and my son were having popsicles outside, the boy complained about how hot it was and that his popsicle was dripping everywhere. The girl responded matter-of-factly, “Suck it up!” He literally sucked up the melting juice, but I think she meant for him to quit his whining or take his pity party somewhere else.

On her balcony cheering me on...

Miracle told me that her favorite doll is Tiana from The Princess and The Frog. Of course it is! All the little girls, and even the boys around here love that movie. The film is set in New Orleans and just down the bayou where the characters talk like we do, though not all of us practice voodoo. The story is different from most fairy tales though, and that is exactly why I think it is so great. Fairy tales evolve over time and change their cultural relevance, and the Disney version of the tale is the one that holds the strongest meaning to me. Unlike the early versions where a princess kisses a frog who then turns into her prince and they live happily ever after, the Disney animated version shows a hard-working Tiana in control of her own destiny. It was when Tiana chose to try the easy route to fulfill her dreams by kissing the frog that she found herself lost in the swamp. I think I know a lot of girls around here my age who could relate to that! And guess what – I wouldn’t want to be the poor prince responsible for fulfilling someone else’s dreams either. That’s the kind of pressure that bubbles up and pops on the surface of a seemingly stagnant swamp. You’ve got problems and troubles like the rest of us? Well as Miracle would say, “Suck it up.” We make our own choices, and we live by the consequences. When we make a bad decision, life’s not over. Paddle yourself out of the swamp. You’re welcome to just sit there on your lily pad sulking and waiting for someone to come along and pull you out too, but I’m willing to bet my own lily white you-know-what that you’ll be waiting for a while. There are no guarantees that what comes along will be a prince, and if he is who’s to say he’ll want to carry you. Our little Miracle moved away this weekend, but miracles always come and go don’t they? I think I’m strong enough to navigate the swamps and bayous around here on my own now anyway.

Miracle with her Tiana doll from The Princess & The Frog

Yesterday was 7/11. Those are supposed to be lucky numbers, but 13 years ago on 7/11 my dad died. I wrote my first blog post, My Hail Mary, for Facebook in the wee hours of the morning of Friday the 13th, and it was good for me. Maybe the whole numbers/luck thing is backwards which would explain my backwards figures in the checkbook too where I am most certainly NOT lucky. Maybe even God forced my hand, and I’m finally taking charge of my own destiny. Either way you roll the dice, the only safe bet you have is to rely on yourself. How can anyone else count on you if you can’t even do it yourself. I hope my kids at least take that lesson from my fairy tale regardless of how it turns out, and I’ll take notes about my signs along the way for them to read and learn from later.

Walt Disney

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Learning to Fly Tuesday, Jun 21 2011 


“Well I started out down a dirty road
Started out all alone

And the sun went down as I crossed the hill
And the town lit up, the world got still

I’m learning to fly, but I aint got wings
Coming down is the hardest thing

Well the good old days may not return
And the rocks might melt, and the sea may burn

I’m learning to fly, but I aint got wings
Coming down is the hardest thing

Well some say life will beat you down
Break your heart, steal your crown
So I’ve started out for God knows where
I guess I’ll know when I get there

I’m learning to fly, around the clouds
But what goes up must come down

I’m learning to fly, but I ain’t got wings
Coming down is the hardest thing”

-Tom Petty

This is the song that came to mind yesterday over coffee on the balcony. I started to blog about it, but something else entirely came out. Now I see why. I have a lot more to say about it today while the PETTY things are trying to get in the way. I still have MY crown though. The clouds are around indeed today, and I’m doing my best to fly around them. A friend told me yesterday that it seems like this stuff is just pouring out of me. Well, when it rains it pours. Some of you probably checked the forecast and saw this coming, right? Well not me. I didn’t see it coming til it actually was right up on me. Story of my life. As God would have it, it’s actually raining outside this morning, and if I’m going to drink my coffee on the balcony like every other morning so far, then Imma be gettin’ WET (said in my best Will.I.Am voice) And Imma be puttin’ it on the blog. ‘Cause rockin’ like this is my job! (It’s a non-paying gig so far, but it’s still a job.) And Imma be takin’ them pics. And lookin’ all FLY. Imma be the FLYest chick, so FLY. Imma be spreadin’ my wangs. Imma be doin’ my thang. Get it, get it!!?? OK. No worries though. If Imma be gettin’ wet, I ain’t gonna melt. I’m not the witch in this fairy tale.

I haven’t seen my bunnies yet this morning. They probably take cover when it rains. NOT my birds though. I watched one on the fence in the rain like he was trying to make a decision about where to go. Stupid birds. The dark clouds come in, the wind blows, the sweet bunny friends hide, and the mockingbirds sit out just looking for someone to pick on. Do they not get that THEY are the ones getting WET? Yep. Alot like life and the people in it, don’t you think? Take note Bird People. Get out of the rain!!! Or get an umbrella, at least. But don’t ask to come onto my balcony. I can’t shelter you from life’s storms. You’re going to have to do that yourself, and I have no room for you here in my castle anyway especially when the THUNDER ROLLS. (Thanks, Garth.)

GUESS who I saw yesterday that got me going on the song??? The baby bird, Tweety!! And guess what he was doing. Yep! Learning to fly. How do you like that?! I was sitting on the balcony and he flew right up and landed on the gutter. And I took a pic, of course!!

When I first discovered him, I was, yes, sitting on the balcony again, and I watched a neighbor walk past and point out to his wife the little bird in the bush. They stopped a minute, checked out the bird, then went on their way. As they walked away I heard the guy say matter of factly, “It’ll probably be dead tomorrow. It’s sitting on the ground where anything can get it. It can’t even fly yet, and it’s probably hungry.” The guy was just making an observation and stating it matter-of-factly. Well, I jumped up, ran downstairs (with my phone of course) and sought out the baby bird. I’m a super steady photographer, so it’s your own fault if you choose to watch the clip and get dizzy as a result, OK? Oh, yeah. You’ll also have to LEAN SIDEWAYS because I don’t know how to turn the video either. I’m WINGING it here ya’ll! (more…)