Sunday, February 14, 2010

Happy Valentine's Day!!!

Hello, everybody! Today is February 14, Valentine's Day and I'm sitting here in bucolic Joshua, Texas, wishing and hoping that anyone who reads this gets an extra dollop of love today. And I'm wishing and hoping you have the courage to accept it for all it's worth.
Here things have been so full of love it's almost embarrassing. On my birthday I got about 50 notes, emails, messages from friends, family, former the old days I would have shrugged, but these days I open my arms and say "gimme more! I'll take it! Gimme the love, everybody!" which probably sounds ridiculous, but isn't. Something happens after a few heart breaks and after parents die and for me at least there was a hole in there that kept me keeping love at arm's distance. Clare, for so many years, simply loved me and loved me wonderfully, but how I pushed her away. How I thought that would inhibit my life--when really it was enriching my life. Know how much that girl loved me? When we were living together and I was feeling claustrophobic, she found me a second apartment and let me just live there till I missed her and came home. That sort of person ought to get medals, not be pushed away.
But push I did until she finally left, and then I cried for years.
These days I have learned to take the love and I love it.
And on my birthday, with Italo and Sarah broke from getting ready for the baby in a couple of weeks, and Marco ready to enter the Air Force any day and not working, and Chepa not working....well, there were not gonna be a lot of presents. But we did have one hell of a party. Chepa made a cake--chocolate cake bottom; vanilla cake top, ice-cream stuffed in the middle; sweet vanilla icing dripped with thick homemade chocolate--that was freaking out of this world. And Italo and Sarah got me a beautiful shirt, and Marco told me he was happy I was his dad, and Madeleina went into her savings and bought me a shirt, a movie and a box of chocolate.
And I made us a feast and I just loved being with them.
So if any of you are still pushing away the love, stop it. Look at yourselves and let yourself take it. Yes, the person loving you will one day leave or die or come to hate you. So what? Today they love you, so take it, take it, take it. Get rich with it. Get wet with it. Let it slobber all over you.
And then give it back. And give it without any expectation of getting anything in return. Just give it, and give it, and give some more. You've got an infinite supply so don't be stingy! Cause other people can use all the love you can give and they can get too.
Wow! That's not what I sat down to write but that's what my heart made me say. And now I'm sitting here crying while I'm typing and ain't that crazy?
And it snowed here, a rare occurrence in this part of Texas. We got eight inches and Friday Madeleina's school was shut because of it. And Italo and I had to shovel and push-broom 50-feet of driveway and that was a blast.
And yesterday, with Madeleina at Walmart, her being treated to some new paints and a book, and me buying house stuff and food, she noted on the way home: "Dad, I think I understand why people always talk about money. I mean you, really."
"Why is that, honey?"
"Because yesterday was the first time in my life that I used my own money to buy things. I mean, I just bought you a shirt and a movie and chocolate, and they cost more than $40. So instead of having $110, I only have like $62. And you do that every day for us. You have to pay for the house and the food and the cars and your cigarettes and parties and food for the animals and clothes for us and buy my flute and give mom wonder you're half-crazy. How can anybody do that and not start going nuts?"
"Glad you're getting it. Everybody does that. Every mom and dad and single guy and girl and pretty much every grownup in the whole world..."
"No wonder this world is messed up. Everybody's worried about money all the time..."
"Well, you try to figure out how to do it without letting it kill you."
"I'm not ready to be a grown up and worry about that stuff."
"Darling, you're 12 years old. You got a ways to go."
"But it did feel great to buy you those things. I liked that part of feeling like a grown up."
"And I like taking care of the things that take care of my family. You just got to do it with love and then have some faith that the universe is gonna give you more work tomorrow."
"I guess that explains why people pray, huh?"
"I love you, baby."


Dee De Danan said...

Hi Peter

I happily discovered your great blog at the weekend and lingered longer than I should have catching up on all the old posts. Hence I'm shamelessly blaming you and your compelling words for washing undone, work unfinished.

I've just come back from drinking Aya in Peru (having previously drank over a number of years in Brazil) and its a joy to read about your own experiences with the medicina and the jungle.

I especially appreciate your honesty and wit regarding the, er, glorious challenges of threading the wisdom you gained back into a world where earning a buck, juggling the bills and raising a squad of free-thinking (dissenting) folk to adulthood remain a priority.

Sometimes, aya memoirs seem to me a little air-brushed with the love-stick. In the aftermath, the person always seems to be wonderfully well-adjusted and a master of conquering personal challenges from thereonin.

But perhaps I am just a slow learner (as well as, oh dear, a bitter cynic)!

In my own experience, I always find the transition from vine-clad jungle back to urban jungle (London) a little testing.

Which, loosely translated, means I'm a right pain in the arse for a few weeks.

Thereafter of course, I am an angel of loving probity :-)

Your post, recounting the vision of your mother, echoed my own recent visions of my dad who passed on a few months ago.

In the weeks leading up to his death I had returned to Belfast to help my mother and brothers nurse him at home.

This afforded he and I the unmissable opportunity to talk about spirit, life, death, love, fear etc long into the many nights when breathlessness and pain were making it difficult for him to sleep.

On the night he died, we made something of a pact to hook up again, if possible, when I drank Aya. (Much to the bewilderment of the priest who was administering the last rites to him at the time. Dad described himself as "ethnically: Irish Catholic, religiously: freethinker" so the priest was there in support of that and perhaps also because us Irish like to hedge our bets).

The first night, despite a lot of focus, I was unable to make contact with him.

However the second night, after much calling on my part, he materialised slowly from a fine white gauze screen. I could see the energy pattern of his face rematerialise (think the teleporter on the Starship enterprise).

He told me that it was very difficult for him to materialise into a form that would be recognizeable to me and that subsequent communication would have to be formless.

On the subsequent nights I was able to hear him and communicate with him, but could no longer "see" him. He even conveyed the words to a new song he'd been working on, but alas no more face-time .

Please keep writing Peter. Your posts are funny, moving and a delight to read but also inspirational in the very literal sense of that word.

Its nice to be a witness to someone else's truth as well as our own.

Happy Daze


Gritter said...

Whoa! I think I like this dee person too. Much a thinker and communicates very well. Hello there dee and all the best from Alabama.