Where’s My Needle? OWCH!

Today, I have been in a bit of a funk…for no damn reason.  Just opened my eyes and realized that no matter how many times I rolled around, I was still getting out of the wrong side of the bed.

Came to school.  Got to work.  And then I accidentally stuck my foot in my mouth and started chewing on my hip, I swallowed and spoke so fast.


I’m good at making mistakes.  Please feel free to read the blog not in which I wrote about standing next to myself but how I was told that I needed to stand next to myself.  Yup…that one…the one about how I break things.

Sometimes, what I accidentally break is not so easily repaired.  Finding the emotional glue that absorbs my stupidity is impossible.  But I try….I try constantly to make things better.  My mom, who is not trying to sound horrible, told me that I should never apologize.  I think that she’s afraid that by apologizing people will see me as soft, weak, or liable and then the lawsuits start rolling in.

My brother told me that I should accept responsibility for my actions.

My heart tells me that when I screw up to ask for forgiveness.  Of course, if you recall from yet another blog I’ve written, I also love feeling guilty…and by that…I don’t mean that I love guilt…but I’m good at experiencing it and feeling it and being BFF’s with it.

So, I’ve been wallowing in my hip’s marrow and feeling all tired and sad because I said something which I didn’t mean but still made someone I love sad which makes me feel sad because I like to heal and not to hurt.  To distract myself, I pull up my email and Hayley, my beloved editor, former student, current friend, sent me a blog with the perfect end quote that is supposed to get me to Friday….

“When you can step back at moments like these and see what is happening, when you watch people you love under fire or evaporating, you realize that the secret of life is patch patch patch. Thread your needle, make a knot, find one place on the other piece of torn cloth where you can make one stitch that will hold. And do it again. And again. And again.”

Anne Lamott, Stitches: A Handbook on Meaning, Hope, and Repair

I needed that.  I really needed this quote not to get me to Friday but to get me to this point where I can finally give voice to a mistake that still nibbles at my gut (where my conscience gnome sits and pokes me with his stupid hat).

I’m tired.  I’m so very tired.  In some respects, the work, the responsibilities, the apathy, the fatigue, the constant requests, the everything….they are making me feel like I am evaporating….like I am butter too thinly spread over too much bread (God, I love that quote/allusion/reference).  Today was nothing more than yet another swipe across my frayed emotions and I needed something that would help me stop seeing the tatters but the fibers, the individual threads.

Ah…there they are…wrapped around the bars of a loom that is quiet and stationary at this moment.  I am too tired to pull the shuttle through, too tired to release the pressure and hit the pedal that will make whatever the device is that will pull the threads together and make them tight.

But I can see them. Can feel the rich, plaited, coiled texture of the threads against my fingers, within the ridges where my knuckles meet.  I can slide my finger against the thread, apply too much pressure, crack the skin, and bleed into the thread.  Or I can gently rub the tip of my finger along the axis and let the thread’s note bleed into my skin and absorb the voice within.

I want to write a story about one of the Greek Fates, the one who cuts the thread.  She is tired of killing everyone and only wants to let the world live and stop being the bearer of pain.  She steals the eye from her sisters and runs away, carrying a harp that she has strung with the people whose lives she couldn’t cut because they were too beautiful to die.

I understand this Fate.  I understand, in my own shallow way, what it means to hold the weight of a person’s heart in my hand and know that with a single synapse within my brain, I can crush it or give it life.  Sometimes, in my brutal honesty, my fingers close…and my own heart starts to ache.  I’ve seen the shadows in the Boy’s eyes when I have to hold him accountable for his actions…Those shadows leave stains on my soul.

I found my needle earlier.  And I threaded words through the eye and wove the needle in and out and through the paths of my heart that was a wee bit cracked and wound it around the young woman who was witness to my honesty.  I wrapped the tendons of my foot around my words and pulled everything out of my mouth.

Life is all about rich joys.  Life is all about mistakes and sadness and reconciliation.  Life is about apologizing, no matter what my beautiful and sometimes mistaken mother might say.  By the way, my mom has apologized to me.  And I have begged her forgiveness for all the horrible and ugly things I have said to her….or the two times that I nearly punched her (yes, I really did have my fist raised….I was that angry).

In the end, life is about the incredible beauty of forgiveness as well…for which I am incredibly thankful.

By the way, don’t be like me.  Once, I lost my needle and in looking for it….I sat on it…..

Maybe that  was God punishing me…

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