i went to disneyland when i was six and i was brilliantly shy.
snow white wouldn’t acknowledge my presence and i slid up next to mickey mouse just for the picture. goofy had too many people around him and i was lost in a crowd. pluto came right up to me and hugged me. good dog. i don’t remember much other than that. knott’s berry farm. a log ride. staying at my great-aunt’s house in orange county.
used to love road trips with my dad. we’d sing songs, he’d sing songs, johnny cash and charley pride and willie nelson and hank williams and then, the kid songs. this old man, how much is that doggie in the window, old mcdonald. we’d stop for ice cream and we’d walk on the beach and collect agates and we’d get back home to portland and buy used books at powells. he liked chicken fried steak, i liked ham & cheese sandwiches.
i’m coming up on the two year anniversary of my dad’s death. went to see my therapist the other day and was pretty happy, then i said this out loud. it’s been two years. how can i be walking on air one moment and then repeat this sentence out loud and the tears come as i hit the brick wall again.
nothing you can do when they’re dead except live.
then you think of how different your life has become. you know it’s all for the better, you know it is, but you miss those dreams sometimes. i miss that 10% they gave. i suppose i thought if i added it all up it’d be almost a full hundred percent. but in that way of thinking, you never feel full – it’s like filling a leaky rubber raft with water, never quite getting what you need.
so i think i’ve learned a bit. i think i’ve come to be better at asking for what i need. i think maybe i’m a bit softer and a bit more vulnerable, and that i’m okay with it. i feel like i am okay now, for the first time.
in eight weeks i’ll be on a train headed to the northern parts of scotland, traveling through the countries of my roots. i am craving sleep, easy conversation, walking amongst trees and yep, more sleep. not to escape, just to be all tangled up nicely, feel a sense of sanctuary, see another perspective of the world and take things as they come. talk about a true necessity! it’s been an interesting year. but it feels to be headed in a nice direction – and while i can’t say where things will go, i know it’s going to be good.
“Kemo kimo, delamo hi oh, rumsickle pumsickle, sue eye pennywinkle, lip back, sit back, billy in the boot jack, sing a song, kitty wants a ki me oh.”