Thursday, July 31, 2008

Mothers are Dying

Our mothers are dying.
It's that time for us.
Both of my best friend's mothers are gone.
My friend C.'s mother died on Tuesday.
Bye C.'s mom.
Thanks for bringing her into this world.

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Like A Pig In Mud

The unhappy person resents it when you try to cheer him up, because
that means he has to stop dwelling on himself and start paying attention
to the universe. Unhappiness is the ultimate form of self-indulgence.
When you're unhappy, you get to pay a lot of attention to yourself. You
get to take yourself oh so very seriously."
- Tom Robbins, *Jitterbug Perfume*


I've been contemplating my current unhappiness. The way I've been dwelling on myself has been extremely indulgent and is sort of embarrassing. It's ridiculous how identified with ego I've been. My own and another's. It's enamored me with its nasty little stories, and then convinced me to take my little drama so very seriously. My pain body has caught me like a tar baby and my struggle to escape has been futile. Truthfully, I haven't really been struggling to escape. I've rather been luxuriating in the sticky squalor like a pig in mud.

When I focus on another and simply feel the relationship I notice the warmth of love. When I think about the relationship I find myself wanting something different. I'm dissatisfied with another's choices. I'm attached to my conceptions of what should be, rather than what is. I'm resisting the truth of what is real.

Andrew Cohen says that freedom means being free of attachment. Byron Katie talks about accepting/wanting/loving what is. Abraham teaches the laws of attraction and allowing. Sometimes I lose my equilibrium, the place of balance between consciously creating my life with strong desire for my preferences while living fully in the moment without attachment to anything being other than it is.

The Emptiness That Fills Me

You open me up and crack me to my core.
I watch it happen, you just being you,
enjoying me and our connection.
Loving. Open hearted. Present.
Totally in your body.
I surrender and follow.
Orgasm often brings me
pain. Not physical pain. Not emotional
suffering. Just deep open hearted pain
at the emptiness that fills me.

Monday, July 28, 2008

Heaven On Earth

Living Enlightenment--a call for evolution beyond ego by Andrew Cohen.

I just finished reading this book late last night, well early this morning actually. It's a really quick read and very interesting too. I think Andrew has a lot of valuable teachings to offer along with a good dose of direct enlightenment experiences.

This book is an interview of questions and answers. Chapter 16 is called--the promise of perfection.

Do you think it is possible to be free within a romantic relationship?

Andrew answers, "Almost impossible" and talks about "the sexual/romantic experience as one of the most confusing areas of human life and seems to be the hardest to get clear about." The biggest issue here is the deep emotional and psychological attachment that sex and romance creates.

So isn't it possible to pursue freedom together? Can't we walk the path to
enlightenment in the context of a sexual/romantic relationship?

Andrews response is "One would hope so..." but again, the problem is the powerful attachment that sex and romance creates. It comes down to the matter of priorities because if we are seeking freedom/liberation/enlightenment it is "almost inevitable that attachment will quickly become more important to us than our potential liberation.
But I don't understand why there has to be conflict between freedom and being together.
It depends on what we mean when we speak of freedom. Andrew explains that being enlightened means being free of attachment. "...when you hold on to absolutely nothing, you are free--automatically. And the truth that liberates is the profound recognition of just that fact--that your own natural state is already free. The only ting that keeps us in bondage is the unquestioned belief that there is something fundamental that is missing from our own self. So out of ignorance of our own natural state, we bind ourselves to people and things, convinced that through creating attachment we will find happiness and contentment."

Well, so many of us have discovered that this just isn't the case. People put so much into the myth of finding true love and romance and the perfect sexual partner. I know I did. And then I found him. I was always looking for my one and only. That perfect someone outside of myself. Then he came around 15 years ago. Jerry was a dream come true. And the attachment has been huge. But what also happened once I found him, this perfect partner, was that I found that I still had to deal with myself. I had found the one and he wasn't the one after all. And I wasn't free because I was attached to things outside of myself.

Andrew says that where there is fear there is attachment and where there is attachment there is always fear of loss. We can never be truly happy in this state. I get this on a very deep and profound level. "It is the revelation of enlightenment itself that shows all of this directly to us--the perennial truth that real happiness and the only lasting contentment lie within us as our own True Self..."
I do feel strongly drawn toward the profound freedom you're describing but I also feel like it's a natural thing to want to be in a relationship. From the way you're speaking, it almost sounds like you're advocating celibacy.

It's interesting how people interpret things because this isn't what I was hearing. Andrew says, "Is that what I said? So many people tend to misinterpret what I am saying whenever I speak about this particular topic...it's very difficult to see clearly into this area of the human experience, especially when it relates to ourselves. All I'm trying to do is present the facts. You asked about sex, romance and enlightenment, and all I'm saying is that the definition of spiritual freedom is freedom from attachment. Sex creates attachment--that's all there is to it. And that is why there is almost always an inherent conflict between the longing for inner freedom and the karmic consequences of the sexual/romantic experience. Therefore, the big question is: If enlightened freedom is freedom from attachment, then what are we all going to do about the relentless nature of sexual attraction?"
I was hoping you were going to give me an answer to that one!
"...On one extreme, we have been encouraged to use the sexual experience itself as a vehicle for self-transcendence and, on the other, we have been told that if we want to be liberated...we have to renounce the sexual experience altogether. I believe that if we want to be free, we must think very deeply about these matters for ourselves..." He goes on to say that even enlightened masters have come to contradictory conclusions and so we must turn to our own honest inquiry on this matter. When probed further he still refuses to answer for us. He says if we want to be free then all we need to know is that free means free from attachment.

Andrew also says that the promise of perfect happiness and blissful fulfillment inherent in sexual desire is overwhelmingly deceptive and that we must come to recognize "the difference between the personal bliss of the romantic interlude and the impersonal ecstasy of spiritual freedom." He also says, " But realistically, in a world like ours that is incessantly propagating this powerful promise, if we want to be free, we all, to some degree at least, have to be willing to be renunciates!" But before you get yourself in a tither, he goes on to explain what it is that we have to be willing to renounce. "...renunciation means resisting the temptation to be seduced by the most powerful illusion that there is. It is was he calls "the promise of perfection" which is the belief that the perfect romance will make us happy and content and that we will finally feel whole and complete. "And also, it is only when we let go of the promise of perfection that it will become clear to us how, more often than not, the experience of romantic intoxication if fueled by the ego's need for personal affirmation."
Okay, okay...where's the nearest monastery?! But seriously, Andrew, if what you're saying is true, would there be any reason left to be in a relationship? Even though it's obviously not what you mean, it still keeps sounding like you're saying that if we want to be free, we have to give up the whole thing.
"Well yes, and no. Yes, if it means creating more suffocating attachment that only serves to perpetuate the illusory personal world of the separate ego. But no, if the context for personal intimacy and sexual communion is authentic spiritual freedom."
What does that mean?
"It means that we want to be free more than anything else and therefore are more interested in impersonal ecstasy than personal bliss. It means that the context for personal intimacy and sexual communion would be the impersonal--a dimension that is unknown in this wold, that is beyond ego and fee from attachment."
And where is this impersonal dimension found?
"Inside your own self...That is where you will discover an absolute love, a bliss that is empty of attachment and free from the conviction that anything fundamental is missing. And it is that context alone, which is one of inherent fullness or completion, that can make it possible for human beings to come together in personal intimacy and sexual communion in a way that is free from the pain, complexity, and unending confusion that are usually such an inherent part of this area of life."

I find this writing very profound and wonderful as it so perfectly coincides with polyamory as a part of a powerful path in my spiritual journey. Polyamory is teaching me to love without attachment, to look within myself for this absolute love and from this core of freedom to reach out to others to share personal intimacy and sexual communion. I also find it of significant importance that in my primary relationship (and I suspect if I ever find myself in another committed primary or secondary relationship as well) Jerry and I are sharing the spiritual journey of enlightenment together. I'm not interested in engaging in a lot of ego feeding in relationship. Some of course is nice because, well because I'm still attached (read some of my ego rantings in previous posts.) But I understand my intention and that of my partner to be to directly experience enlightenment. That, with personal intimacy and sexual communion thrown in is my idea of heaven on earth.

Saturday, July 26, 2008

Ouch!

This is one of the sexiest pictures I've seen in a long time. Ouch! Scarlett Johansson is hot!

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Birgitte Philippides

Anita Wagner posted yesterday on her Practical Polyamory website about Birgitte Philippides, a"New York City polyamory activist... one of the women featured in the most recent episode of the WE (Women's Entertainment) cable network program "The Secret Lives of Women"..." Thank you Anita for turning me on to this vivacious and intriguing woman.

From Birgitte's website:

“(RE)INVENTING LOVE”, an upcoming one-hour episodic docu-reality series invites us into the singular life of BIRGITTE who lives among modern-day New York bohemians engaged in the sometimes-complex and often-hedonistic polyamorous world of managing “many loves and lovers.” With the fast-paced vibe and brash sexual candor of “Sex and the City” and the engrossing, humorous and intimate day-to-day drama explored on reality series like “Workout” and “The Real Housewives of O.C.”, “(RE)INVENTING LOVE” introduces viewers to a unique cast of characters who strive to balance active, artistic and holistically-oriented lives with the ups and downs of living sexualized lifestyles quite different from what most Americans experience.“(RE)INVENTING LOVE” follows the life and many loves of BIRGITTE, a vivacious NYC-based social-commentary painter who also happens to be one of the leading public figures for polyamory, the growing social movement constructed around the concept of “consensual and responsible non-monogamy.”


Let Me Entertain You




Last night a friend told me that he was ready for me to move on in my blog writing. He was getting bored with my subject matter. Excuse me, I said, do you think I write for your entertainment? Well, I read your blog to be entertained he said. It's getting old, you've lingered here too long. Although he did acknowledge me for taking credit for being my own ego buster. He liked that part. And although I write for my own pleasure I also intend to offer something of value to others and it pleases me to know if you are being entertained.

I contemplated what he said and agreed. I've made myself a bit nauseous with all my whining about being done wrong. I mean, I have been rather obsessed with all this and it seems kinda silly right now. Actually, it seems rather pathetic and I hate being pathetic. But a girls gotta do what a girls gotta do to get over herself ya know.

I'm having the first of ten sessions of Myofascial release this week. I hear it's incredibly painful but I'm ready. My chiropractor gave me a referral to deal with the injuries from my accident.

The fires around here are 90% contained. The skies had cleared up a lot but it's been really smokey again the last few days. Not much wind.

My mom is settled into her new assisted care home and things are better but not great. The care home is fine, but she isn't. She's OK. I don't think my mom is going to be a very happy camper for her remaining days/years on this planet. That makes me sad.

We leave for Burning man in a little over 4 weeks. I just discovered that Burning man falls on the first week of school this year rather than the second. That's not so good. The first week of school is pretty significant in dealing with student emergencies and all that. Oops.

I have a dinner date tonight with a group of women, most of whom I don't get together with very often. A friend from Brazil is in town so she pulled it together. We're going to the raw food restaurant Nature's Own, downtown. Several of the women are interested in starting blogs so a couple of us are going to help get them going with that.

I bought a plane ticket from LAX to Sacramento last night. A friend is coming from Santa Barbara in a week and after her visit I'm going to drive home with her to stay for a few days so the ticket is for my flight home. I'm looking forward to being at the ocean. My friend is a dog walker so this is a picture of what we'll be up to in the mornings

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Ego As Phoenix Rising

This is in honor of my tenacious ego. It uses its busting (death) to its advantage and lures me into identifying with the illusion of its praises, creating false pride in me and its own rebirth--like a phoenix rising from its ashes.
From Lady Lazarus by Sylvia Plath

Herr God, Herr Lucifer
Beware
Beware.

Out of the ash
I rise with my red hair
And I eat men like air.

Hi! I'm Minx, and I'm polyamorous

Mistress Matisse linked to this "cute little video that Minx put together" in her blog today and I thought it worth posting myself.

Friendship and Ego

Ha. I've been getting a good laugh out of my ego for the last few days. I caught it in one of it's mind games. It's so devious and thinks it's so smart but ultimately, I'm smarter.

I have a friend who I call my ego buster. That's because we have this relationship where he does a few things that really tweak me BIG. He is so awesome in just about every other way (not a god or anything, just a regular guy, but a really smart, sexy, creative, spiritually evolved, kindhearted regular sort of guy. But this stuff he does throws me for a loop and just busts my ego to smithereens.

What is that saying about friendship...


A friend is one to whom one may pour out all the contents of one's heart, chaff
and grain together, knowing that the gentlest of hands will take and sift it,
keep what is worth keeping, and with a breath of kindness, blow the rest away.~
Source Unknown
Of course we all do this with our friends...except when it's a struggle to do it. And sometimes I really struggle with my ability in blowing this friend's chaff away with a breath of kindness. My feelings get so hurt and I take what he does personally. Like I said, he's my ego buster and he has a way of letting me know (albeit unconsciously) that my ego is alive and overgrown and in need of being so busted.

This is where I caught my ego messing with me again. I've currently been in the middle of one of these struggles with said friend. This struggle is all one-sided mind you, he probably doesn't even have a clue to what I've been going through as it relates to him and that adds one more thing to what I'm struggling with. But anyway, here I am, going through the wringer over this guy and some stuff he's done/hasn't done while he's going about the business of his life totally unaware of what he's done that has affected me so. That's my story anyway, that he's clueless. I can expand on that story too and make him mean and rude and playing the clueless card to let himself off the hook a bit. I don't know. I'm really the one who is clueless and that's the truth. I move in and out of being pretty fucking angry too but back to my story.

So I'm angry and hurt and in the midst of processing my stuff, working to take responsibility for my experience, feeling my strong emotions, looking at the stories my ego tells me without totally buying into believing them and realizing that I'm stuck to the tar baby of attachment and intending to let go of all this bullshit. I'm also doing all this heart opening stuff cause really truly I love this guy so much and that's what matters the most to me, to just be caught up in loving him. But my ego is getting in the way and I know it needs to be busted. You see, my ego gets stuck in old patterns, starts nursing old wounds and is really just this pathological suck of a pain body. One of the valuable aspects of this particular relationship is that when my friend engages in his certain calling card behavior that triggers my pain body, I am once again blessed with another opportunity to process my stuff. Thank you sweet Jesus. It's true, it's good for me. Whether or not my friend is being mean and rude, or unaware, or whatever his story is that is removed from my perspective of him--it's really none of my business. What is my business is how I'm affected by it and what I choose to do with it.

OK, OK, I'm getting to the point. So I gave this friend the title of ego buster at the very beginning of our relationship because he's always played this role for me so well. And now during my current struggle, while I'm processing my stuff and coming to terms with what is, I find myself once again bestowing this term of endearment on him...and my ego says "Hey, wait a minute, don't give him the credit for busting your ego, you are the one who makes the choice to do all the hard work and turn his bad behavior into something good for you. You are the one who is making lemonade from a lemon. You are the ego buster, not him!" And I say, heck yea, you're right, and congratulate myself for being pretty hot stuff.

Sneaky devil that ego mine.

Friendship Quotes:

Friendship should be a responsibility, never an opportunity.~ Source Unknown
~Don't wait for people to be friendly, show them how.~ Source Unknown
~In a friend you find a second self.~ Isabelle Norton
~Friendship is a horizon -- which expands whenever we approach it.~ E.R. Hazlip
~True friendship ought never to conceal what it thinks.~ St. Jerome
~The language of friendship is not words but meanings.~ Henry David Thoreau
~It takes a long time to grow an old friend.~ John Leonard
~I do then with my friends as I do with my books. I would have them where I can find them, but I seldom use them.~ Ralph Waldo Emerson
~Friendship consists in forgetting what one gives, and remembering what one receives.~ Dumas The Younger
~There is a scarcity of friendship, but not of friends.~ Thomas Fuller
~He whose hand is clasped in friendship cannot throw mud.~ Source Unknown
~Make friends before you need them~ Source Unknown
~A true friend is one soul in two bodies.~ Aristotle
~It is not what you give your friend, but what you are willing to give him that determines the quality of friendship.~ Mary Dixon Thayer
~A friend is a present you give to yourself.~ Robert Louis Stevenson
~Friendship is the source of the greatest pleasures, and without friends even the most agreeable pursuits become tedious.~ St. Thomas Aquinas
~A true friend is someone who is there for you when he'd rather be anywhere else.~ Len Wein ~Often we have no time for our friends but all the time in the world for our enemies.~ Leon Uris ~Be slow to fall into friendship; but when thou art in, continue firm and constant.~ Socrates ~One who looks for a friend without faults will have none.~ Hasidic Saying
~Real friends are those who, when you've made a fool of yourself, don't feel that you've done a permanent job.~ Erwin T. Randall
~Love is only chatter, friends are all that matter.~ (Frank) Gelett Burgess
~A single rose can be my garden... a single friend, my world.~ Leo Buscaglia
~Friendship is Love without his wings!~ Lord Byron
~Most people enjoy the inferiority of their best friends.~ Lord Chesterfield
~Be more prompt to go to a friend in adversity than in prosperity.~ Chilo
~A friend is, as it were, a second self.~ Marcus T. Cicero
~A good motto is: Use friendliness but do not use your friends.~ Frank Crane
~A friend is someone you can be alone with and have nothing to do and not be able to think of anything to say and be comfortable in the silence.~ Sheryl Condie
~I'm treating you as a friend asking you to share my present minuses in the hope that I can ask you to share my future pluses~ Katherine Mansfield
~Friends are needed both for joy and for sorrow.~ Samuel Paterson
~Friends will keep you sane, Love could fill your heart, A lover can warm your bed, But lonely is the soul without a mate.~ David Pratt
~Go oft to the house of thy friend, for weeds choke the unused path.~ Ralph Waldo Emerson
~A friend is known when needed.~ Arabian Proverb
~Hold a true friend with both your hands.~ Nigerian Proverb
~Only your real friends will tell you when your face is dirty.~ Sicilian Proverb
~A friend is one who knows us, but loves us anyway.~ Fr. Jerome Cummings
~A friend hears the song in my heart and sings it to me when my memory fails.~ Readers Digest ~To find a friend one must close one eye--to keep him, two.~ Norman Douglas
~It is one of the blessings of old friends that you can afford to be stupid with them.~ Ralph Waldo Emerson
~In the sweetness of friendship let there be laughter, and sharing of pleasures.~ Kahlil Gibran ~Life is partly what we make it, and partly what it is made by the friends we choose.~ Tehyi Hsieh
~Give me work to do, Give me health, Give me joy in simple things, Give me an eye for beauty, ~A tongue for truth, A heart that loves, A mind that reasons, A sympathy that understands. Give me neither malice nor envy, But a true kindness And a noble common sense. At the close of each day Give me a book And a friend with whom I can be silent.~ S. M. Frazier
~Happiness isn't the easiest thing to find, but one place you're guaranteed to find it is in a friend's smile. -Allison Poler
~True friendship is a plant of slow growth. -George Washington
~Love is blind; friendship closes its eyes.
~Lots of people want to ride with you in the limo, but what you want is someone who will take the bus with you when the limo breaks down. -Oprah Winfrey
~Friendship is a horizon-- which expands whenever we approach it. E.R. Hazlip
~Friends are relatives you make for yourself. -Eustache Deschamps
~You just don't luck into things as much as you'd like to think you do. You build step by step, whether it's friendships or opportunities. -Barbara Bush
~The bird a nest, the spider a web, man friendship. -William Blake
~Better to be a nettle in the side of your friend than his echo. -Ralph Waldo Emerson
~We should get into the habit of reading inspirational books, looking at inspirational pictures, hearing inspirational music, associating with inspirational friends. -Alfred A. Montapert
~There can be no friendship without confidence, and no confidence without integrity. -Samuel Johnson
~As iron sharpens iron, a friend sharpens a friend. -Proverbs 27:17
~I value the friend who for me finds time on his calendar, but I cherish the friend who for me does not consult the calendar. -Robert Brault
~Friendship is like a silver teapot. Sometimes it’s put away longer than we realize and it becomes tarnished, but after it’s polished, it’s like new again.
~A friend is a person with whom I may be sincere. Before him I may think aloud. -Ralph Waldo Emerson
~A friend is one who takes me for what I am. -Henry David Thoreau
~STAY is a charming word in a friend's vocabulary. -Amos Bronson Alcott
~Depth of friendship does not depend on length of acquaintance. -Rabindranath Tagore
~Two are better than one because they have a good reward for their labor. For if they fall, one will lift up his companion. But woe to him who is alone when he falls, for he has no one to help lift him up. -Ecclesiastes 4:9-10
~A mirror reflects a man's face, but what he is really like is shown by the kind of friends he chooses. -Proverbs 27:19
~A mere friend will agree with you, but a real friend will argue. -Russian proverb
~My friends are my estate. Forgive me then the avarice to hoard them! -Emily Dickinson
~We are all travelers in the wilderness of this world, and the best that we can find in our travels is an honest friend. -Robert Louis Stevenson
~I have learned that to be with those I like is enough. -Walt Whitman
~Never injure a friend, even in jest. -Cicero
~Friendship is the inexpressible comfort of feeling safe with a person, having neither to weigh thoughts nor measure words. -George Elliot
~Friendship demands attention. -Thomas Moore
~The real test of friendship is: Can you literally do nothing with the other person? Can you enjoy together those moments of life that are utterly simple? They are the moments people looks back on at the end of life and number as their most sacred experiences. -Eugene Kennedy
~There is no friend like an old friend who has shared our morning days, no greeting like his welcome, no homage like his praise. -Oliver Wendell Holmes
~A blessed thing it is for any man or woman to have a friend, one human soul whom we can trust utterly, who knows the best and worst of us, and who loves us in spite of all our faults. -Charles Kingsley
~One of the most beautiful qualities of true friendship is to understand and to be understood. -Seneca
~We cannot tell the precise moment when friendship formed. As in filling a vessel drop by drop, there is at last a drop which makes it run over; so in a series of kindnesses there is at last one which makes the heart run over. -Samuel Johnson
~A friend is one who walks in when the rest of the world walks out. -Walter Winchell
~The only way to have a friend is to be one. -Ralph Waldo Emerson

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Naked Love

I've been contemplating friendship and what it means to love someone unconditionally. I like to think of it as naked love. Naked love is: void of conditions; without covering, love laid bare, stripped of protection, unsheathed; real, factual, true, not accompanied or supplemented by anything else; exposed, in plain view, open, evident, undisguised; direct; unlimited; not contingent or determined by anything; absolute.

That's quite a tall order and although ultimately the goal of human life may be to love all of humanity nakedly, my own intention at this point in my spiritual evolution is to start with the relationships that are close to my heart, my family and friends and then to branch out to those that I have personal contact with. I simply hope that this love will eventually emanate and spiral out to encompass all people everywhere, all of life, all that is.

Naked love is without attachment to any results. It doesn't expect anything. That doesn't mean that I'm not attached to things (my love relationships for instance) because I am. But attachment makes it difficult to remain nakedly in love and my experience is that one must keep their "clothes" off in order to love fully.

Attachment is the heaviest, most suffocating covering to love that I've experienced. It convinces me that love looks a particular way and that another should be doing my bidding. We all have opinions about what is appropriate behavior in love relationships. I want what I want and you want what you want too. That's all fine and dandy when those things match but when a divergence occurs, watch out! I'm always working on remembering that it's none of my business what another does. Everyone has the right to do what they do, regardless of what I think about it or how I'm affected by it. Even when they are breaking an agreement they've made with me. I may not like it and I'm not required to either. And if I find myself affected by something another is/isn't doing, I can do something about that to...or not. I can choose to just feel what comes up for me and not do anything at all. I can wait until muddy waters settle or wait until I can't wait any more.

The tricky part for me is when I'm committed to a love relationship and another is behaving in ways that seem to disregard the relationship. For instance, when another agrees to specific things and then doesn't follow through. Of course this is another's right and again, none of my business, but what is my business is how I choose to handle it. I don't tend to be one that is easily offended and I don't like the feelings created when I find myself projecting blame and judgement on another when I start interpreting their behavior as rude, disrespectful, unthoughtful, uncaring etc. The truth of the matter is that I don't understand the behavior so I start making up stories about it. Sometimes my stories are unkind. Sometimes they are off the mark. Sometimes they are right on. Of course, some relationships push my buttons more than others, and some people in my life have patterns that they continuously repeat. Some people I give a lot of slack and others I'm hyper vigilant to perceived neglect.

So I'm looking at my patterns in relationships. What is it about me that chooses to be here? Why do I chooses to stay in relationship with someone that continually treats me in a way that I don't like? What is this role all about for me? Am I pathologically attached to this person, attracted to some quality in them that speaks to an unhealed wound in my psyche? Is the fact that they for instance, make themselves unavailable, disappear for extended periods of time and abandon me, what I'm actually looking for in them? Is this the behavior I secretly crave from them? Of course, all of me isn't sick and maladjusted and if I was only receiving neglect I wouldn't stick around. So of course there are all of the other most lovely aspects of another, of the relationship itself that beacon me, that encourage me to stick around. I ask myself, when is enough, enough? After repeated offenses, when will I be done? When will the painful aspects of the relationship outweigh the joy I receive? These are not easy questions to answer.

I'm not being abused by anyone. None of my relationships are that bad. I tend to attract pretty incredible people into my life. So incredible in fact that the gifts they offer are so immense, that the pain generated generally pales in comparison. People are people and we all have our shortcomings. I can't imagine wanting to end any of my relationships. I'm a real hanger on. Letting go is not my forte. I like sustaining relationships. Granted, they evolve and sometimes people move on, but I like to keep doors open and build bridges that are available to perhaps cross over again. I always imagine that more love is available.

That said, what about when I find myself lacking trust, even fearing what a person will do? Worst than that is when I get cynical and find myself making snide comments and glib assessments of that person. This is when I know my heart has closed down to them. I'm angry about something they've done, my needs aren't being met and I'm holding them responsible for my lack of happiness. What do I do with all of this? I struggle to get out from under the lies, to uncover the truth.

I know that my needs are my responsibility so I start off by processing all of this. Feeling my feelings and trying my best to stay out of my head and the endless stories my ego makes up regarding another. I remind myself that what they do is not my business and then I try to get to the business at hand--opening my heart and finding my truth. This is what feels good to me. Living in the truth of an open heart. Living nakedly.

When I arrive back to an open heart I feel good again but eventually, I'm still left wondering. Is there something for me to do here? I'm committed to this person, to this relationship and I've made certain promises. I've promised to tell the truth, to make myself available and to confront issues that arise between us. And dammit, I don't know how to be available and tell the truth and confront the issues that have arisen when another has made themselves unavailable.

And I have the tendency to get fed up if I'm the one who has to always be the squeaky wheel. I don't want to be the one who always pursues the issues, the relationship, the truth, the other--no matter how graciously I'm met, how sparkly their eyes, how warm and friendly their smile, how open their heart when they see me. I tire of this role. I want to be pursued too. I want to pursue the truth with a partner who is as equally committed to showing up as I am.

And yet, do I tire of it enough to give it up? I think not. So I continue contemplating friendship and the meaning of being committed to a relationship and loving someone unconditionally. Naked love melts me. My commitment is to be here for them, even if they aren't here for me. And I enter that commitment with the full knowledge that sometimes I don't have a clue how to best "be here" for them. Is it come closer, break through my wall? Or is it, back off and give me space? When another doesn't speak, sometimes I make the wrong choice. Sometimes I make the wrong choice when they do. My commitment is to keep my heart open and to love through the pain, the anger, the heartbreaking sadness-both mine and theirs. My commitment is to love nakedly.






Practical Polyamory

Anita Wagner has a nice website called Practical Polyamory with lots of great information and links. You can also check out her blog here.

She offers some nice articles that you can read and/or print out by
clicking on Downloadable Documents from her website:


Making Peace With Jealously In Polyamorous Relationships

Avoid The Pitfalls and Reap The Rewards Of Polyamorous Relationships

Fourteen Steops To Opening A Monogamous Relationship

The Polytics Of Polyamory

Polyamory In Media's Spotlight


I like this picture of her with a chart like they have on The L Word with all the different lovers connecting.

Sunday, July 20, 2008

OZOMATLI--Can't Stop & Others

Ozomatli did not disappoint! One of the things that amazes me about their music is that it covers such a wide range of genres.

Strunz and Farah played, as they did at the first World Music Festival ten years ago when Ardeshir Farah, from Iran flirted with me and then gave me one of their CDs. That was my interpretation anyway and then when Jerry opened for them in Sacramento at the Crest Theatre a couple of years ago, I got the same message from him again. He is very sexy but I was too shy to flirt back...much. What is it about men from the Middle East? Ouch. This year I listened to their music from afar and although I had thoughts to make the effort to connect with him again and say hello, I didn't.

Dobet Gnahore was great and I enjoyed Redhead, Susie Keyne's new band but I missed the other Fruits, Mel Watson and Sam Lohs, from Adelaide, Australia's indie rock band.


Can't Stop

Shake Shake Shake

So you feel you can’t go on
You’ve got nothing left to lose
But there is no one left to love
You got nothing left to choose

You can’t stop
Can’t stop at yesterday
Cause we gotta move on in a different way
Today is another day
Can’t stop now today is another day

You can’t stop, this love
Shake it, Shake it, Shake, Shake it, Shake it
You can’t stop, this love
Can’t stop now, got to keep moving
We’ve got faith in what love can do
Don’t look back we’re gonna make it through
Can’t stop now, got to keep moving

You feel you got nowhere to run
That there is nothing we can do
You have so much left to love
In the end there’s always me and you

You can’t stop
Can’t stop at yesterday
Cause we gotta move on in a different way
Today is another day
Can’t stop now today is another day

You can’t stop, this love
Shake it, Shake it, Shake, Shake it, Shake it
You can’t stop, this love
Can’t stop now, got to keep moving
We’ve got faith in what love can do
Don’t look back we’re gonna make it through
Can’t stop now, got to keep moving

Come on; front-back-middle-to top we keep it grooving
No more sad songs singing the blues, we keep it movin
You can’t stop, Can’t stop at yesterday
Cause we gotta move in a different way
No more sad songs songs singing the blues, we keep it movin (Can Move)
You know we don’t stop, even when the wheels lock
(Moving it, Moving it)
And when the beat knock, people in the street rock

Fruit on Good Morning Australia


Oh my God, aren't they just so cute/hot?! I've had a terrible love/lust crush on Mel Watson (she's on the far left) ever since they first played at the California world music festival years ago. All, three them are just so awesome.

Friday, July 18, 2008

Ozomatli - La Gallina

Ozomatli-City of Angels

Ozomatli & Fresh Peach Pie


Today my son brought me fresh peach pie he made with all organic ingredients. He brought his grandma a piece too. Yummy. Good boy. He's a chef and soon I'm going to have a little dinner party for eight and have him cook for me.

I've been sewing all the curtains (the cushions are done) for the motor home. They are beautiful. I've lined them all too so they won't be damaged by the sun. Tomorrow Jerry and I take it on its maiden voyage into the foothills. We are going to California World Music Festival in Grass Valley. We got free tickets because Jerry is loaning Ozomatli his drums. They are a great band too. Being married to a musician has its perks.

Thursday, July 17, 2008

His Gentle Presence

The Manhattans-Shining Star

I had a couple of drinks before my husband met me downtown. He had been out on a date and I had been seeing clients. His gentle presence has the tendency to stir up big emotions in me when I have something going on underneath that wants to surface. The lubrication of alcohol doesn't hurt either. I started sobbing about the pain I was experiencing related to another man. It's not every girl that can do that you know--cry to her husband about her misgivings and confusion over another love relationship. He is my gentle supporter, my heart friend, my anam cara, the one who is always on my team. With my two best friends gone--physically a long distance away, I don't know what I'd do without him right now. I depend on him for a lot and love him dearly.

Big Sex Karma

Leda and the Swan by Michelangelo

I'm contemplating sexuality and how much fear, shame, and emotional pain seem to be attached to it for so many.

Issues of incest, pedophilia, child sexual abuse, bestiality or zoophilia, BDSM, prostitution or the modern day courtesan, and pornography just to name a few.

I wonder about the seemingly universal taboos of sex and where these rules and boundaries all came from originally. The different values, perspectives, and practices of people from different times and cultures related to sexual issues is intriguing. There are so many influences that got us where we are today with our attitudes and understandings (or misunderstandings) about what makes a sexual behavior acceptable or not. What makes someone's kink an allowable personal fetish and what makes it pathologically wrong? Is it the behavior itself, or is it the intention behind it?

Does a young child become highly sexualized because her society or a specific adult in her life is sexually inappropriate with her or might she sometimes simply enter this world with big sex karma, already highly sexualized and attract certain interactions into her life?

Why are we so freaked out and uptight about sex?

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Her First Orgasm Arrived...

My Juicy Women's group met tonight. Lot's of NRE energy in the crowd. Randi is head over heels in love/lust/NRE with a married man. Lena's new relationship has hit some tough spots-- one being that her lover has a problem with alcohol. Ana is open and exploring without acting on all of the different sexual offerings that are coming her way. She is pondering the meaning of connection with another in relationship to having sex with them. Pema is enjoying a deeper level of intimacy with her man and has been propositioned with a courtesan position from a new potential female client. Molly's personal sharing at our last meeting about the circumstances surrounding her first meeting her husband and their mutual attraction for one another got her all hot and bothered for him and she shared with us some of the patterns that came up for them surrounding that. Rosemary shared about her current heartbreak and confusion in one of her relationships and offered a contrast/comparison of the reactions of two "other women" in regards to her relationship with "their" men.

Randi started the sharing of her sexual history tonight and described her incredibly young sexualization. This woman had an open heart and throbbing pussy from the time she was tiny. She was molested by her uncle from the ages of 3 to 15 and had various deep love relationships throughout her childhood. Her first orgasm arrived via the stimulation of a dog's tongue and she very quickly learned that peanut butter would keep the beast coming back for more. The family dynamics this woman grew up with make for quite the dramatic tale and I'm so looking forward to the next chapter of her story. Just like all of us, her history has brought her this far on her journey and has helped to create the woman she is today. And believe me, she is one juicy, powerful, and compassionate piece of work.

Monday, July 14, 2008

I'm Touched

Ha. Well yes, thanks for noticing, I did have a certain theme going on with my Lucinda Williams postings last night. That woman just says it all. And every which way around. Sometimes a girl just has to say what a girl has to say--get those feelings out on the table. And I have a whole gamut of feelings surging around inside of me these days. Oh my now, it's a virtual mad house in there. I could have posted some real pathetic stuff too which Concrete and Barbed Wire along with Unsuffer Me...and oh damn, Those Three Days touch upon but mostly I was going for the anger. It's funny you know, I've never really gone for Country Music with all it's whining and misery and the she/he done me so wrong stuff. But I gotta tell, when you been done wrong, it feels good to vent. There is a certain style with which Lucinda Williams just puts it out there--so pure and raw and in your face and I just can't resist it. And when I'm in a little misery loves company mood, she's always right there with me, like a good friend always is (I appreciate that unintended but convenient dig.) And then when the passion is surging through me and I'm all antsy and in my loving power, she's there to egg me on with all that energy also. So I honor her for all of that. She touches me, just like the all these other people and the emotions they stir up, touch me in my life.

Yea, I'm touched.

I walked this morning (only 13 blocks) but it worked to stir things up in my body a bit. I've washed clothes and checked to make sure the refrigerator in the RV is working well (it's nice and cold). I've stripped the sheets off the bed and filled up the sink with hot soapy dish water which last night's dinner dishes are now soaking in. I've picked up a bunch of odds and ends and my oh my, I guess I'm in productive mode today. I'm feeling good (although I'm still blowing a tablespoon of snot out of my nose every 15 minutes (sorry for sharing). And, best of all, I can see a little blue in the sky today. Not lots, but it's there, the real sky rather than just smoke. That is very good. At this point, most of the local fires are fairly well contained and the evacuations have been lifted so people are returning to their homes, or the charred remains thereof, whichever the case may be. That's sad, and shocking.

Sunday, July 13, 2008

This Wall

Lucinda Williams--Concrete and Barbed Wire

This wall divides us, we're on two different sides
But this wall is not real; how can it be real?
It's only made of concrete and barbed wire
Concrete and barbed wire, concrete and barbed wire
It's only made of concrete and barbed wire

Back in Algiers, my darling broke my heart
But he can't seem to break down this wall
With two strong hands he couldn't move it at all
And it's only made of concrete and barbed wire

Concrete and barbed wire, concrete and barbed wire
It's only made of concrete and barbed wire

Down in Opelousas, dogs are at the gate,
And they're mean, lord, they're mean
There's a wall between us, but it's not what it seems
It's only made of concrete and barbed wire

Concrete and barbed wire, concrete and barbed wire
It's only made of concrete and barbed wire

Somewhere in Louisiana my sugar's doing time
But he can't spend time with me
If he could get over this wall he'd see
That it's only made of concrete and barbed wire

Concrete and barbed wire, concrete and barbed wire
It's only made of concrete and barbed wire

Concrete and barbed wire, concrete and barbed wire
It's only made of concrete and barbed wire

Unsuffer Me - Lucinda Williams

come in to my world
of loneliness
and wickedness
and bitterness

Those Three Days, Lucinda Williams (Audio Only)

you built a nest inside my soul
bite through flesh down to the bone

Lucinda Williams Live - Changed the Locks 2001

You can't say those things to me that make fall down on my knees. I changed the kind of car I drive so you can't spot me driving by.

Lucinda Williams live - Come On

You didn't even make me come on.

Mellow Weekend

I finally started sewing the covers for the RV cushions today and the first one looks great. The fabric is so awesome. Ren brought me her sewing machine the end of June but my life has been so hectic with everything lately this is truly the first chance I've gotten to start sewing. It's a lot cooler today and much of the smoke has cleared. It's been a nice weekend.

After my last client on Friday evening, Jerry and I wanted some mindless entertainment so after going out to dinner we went and saw Wanted with James McAvoy, Angelina Jolie and Morgan Freeman. It was a fairly fun and silly movie loosely based on the comic book miniseries of the same name, with the ridiculous story line of a loom of fate which fingers people through a code that's woven into the fabric, for a brotherhood of assassins to kill.

On Saturday morning we did our usual Saturday morning farmer's market with coffee and socializing and afterwards I took my mother out for Slice of Chico where they serve watermelon and all the downtown shops move their special sale merchandise out onto the sidewalks. We perused downtown and then she took me out for my birthday lunch at the raw food restaurant. We delighted our taste buds and filled our bellies on Thai Mango Wraps, Enchiladas, Key Lime Pie and Chocolate Ganache with Coconut Cream. I bought myself a new purse which was expensive but on sale with the justification of keeping myself better organized and more sane. The one I've been using is no more than a deep dark hole which I end up dumping out at least once or twice a day to find what's lost inside. The new one is a natural organizer with all sorts of different compartments and it opens up wide so I can actually see inside, all the way to the bottom. Later in the day my friend K. came by and we went out and enjoyed a margarita together and gabbed for awhile. I like his stories and his sweet brown eyes. He and his wife have been going through the ringer with their insurance company to pay for a certain necessary procedure and they've finally won the battle. I told him that he should now send them a bill for all the time he's spent haggling with them to get them to pay for what they should have done willingly to begin with. A good portion of the pain and suffering I've gone through after my automobile accident in June has to do with all the work it's taken me to get the insurance companies to do their jobs. It's been incredibly stressful and I'm not nearly done yet either. Jerry made me a nice dinner after I got home from my cocktail with K. and we had a relaxing evening together.

Today has been mellow with a little reading, a little sewing, and a little blogging. I'm going back to the sewing now. I'm excited to get the cushion covers and curtains sewn and to finish fixing up the RV. Burningman is right around the corner.

The Peace I Seek























I've been contemplating the lines from Michael Franti's song One Step Closer To You:
Till I let go of a broken heart
I let go to an open heart
This is a powerful truth. This is my challenge. It's related to the challenge of letting go without shutting down. My broken heart shuts me down and my egoic pain body is very attached to this condition. It finds incredible justification in holding on to this identity. It fears the vulnerability of an open heart. It distrusts the egoic nature of Another and Separates me from the One. It wants justice, desires vindication, believes in wrong and right. It clings to this pathetic story.

My open heart allows me love and love dissipates all my suffering.

I am trapped in this cycle of continual choices as I struggle with the choices of Another.
Broken Heart--Open Heart
Shutting Down--Letting Go
Fearing--Loving
Separation--One
Beyond ideas of right and wrong there is a field, I'll meet you there.--Rumi

This is where I find the peace I seek.

Friday, July 11, 2008

All My Petty Concerns

The truth is, I'm a basket case today. I just returned from the DMV trying to finish all the paperwork on the RV we purchased for Burningman and it was a snafu. Nothing that's wrong won't eventually be righted and hopefully fairly easy but I found myself holding back the tears as the woman behind the counter was telling me everything I had to do. When I got home I had a little mini breakdown crying and sobbing on the phone with Jerry. I have no reserves right now and every tiny bit of stress pushes me over the edge. I lift myself back up fairly quickly but still, I'm always just barely balancing there.

I feel like a putz. I have friends who have lost their homes, without even the time to rescue a few pictures. Others are still in the middle of it, fighting to save theirs. Fires and smoke are everywhere. I may be breathing the smoke but I'm not burning... And here, all my petty concerns.

It's all relative of course. And it just came to me that much of my grief right now is related to what others are going through also, so I'm not a total self-absorbed narcissus.

And regardless of the huge and greater loss of others compared with all that I have to be incredibly grateful for, my load has been heavy lately and whether I like it or not, I've been buckling under the weight.

So I pick myself up once again and deal with what beacons me, doing my best to focus on the love all around me. There is a lot.

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

Grateful Dead - Fire on the Mountain

Concow is burning. Many many folks and several of my friends have lost their homes. I'm praying for a rainstorm.

Thank You Wally

I met with the Omsbudman today and ranted about the care home I just moved my mom out of. He was kind enough to meet me at my office when I a had break between clients. That was so nice of him. And he was very patient and intent on listening to my story, quiet and receiving yet offering a few comments here and there that left me feeling validated and understood. Thank you Wally, I really just needed to vent. Also, I wanted my experience to go on record in case this place has a pattern of neglectful, unprofessional, and inappropriate behavior and treatment of their residents. I hate the idea of them getting away with what they are up to, with their seemingly smug self-righteousness. Afterwards I went and visited my mother who immediately settled into her new care home and is so comfortable and happy there. Thank God. I'm feeling really pleased about that. They are giving her her pomegranate juice twice a day along with the other medications she takes and she was wearing some special hose for her edema that the RN/director of the place picked up for her. I fixed her hair and fed her chocolate and when I left she was sitting contented in her chair plucking her chin whiskers. I feel so fucking relieved.

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Ready For Some Downtime

Oh god, oh god, I've been to hell and back. No, I'm still there. But I'm in heaven too. What a weird conglomeration of the stuff of life.

I have a head cold. A fucking summer head cold and I'm miserable. I'm full of snot and my throat hurts. I have a sneezing fit about every half hour. There is ash flying all over outside and the temperature got to 104 today. Yesterday was 110 and 114 out on the blacktop where Jerry works. My house does not have air conditioning so let's just say our home is not a haven from the heat.

My brother drove up from Rocklin today and we moved our mother into a new care home. That was pretty much smooth sailing all around and I'm feeling good about her being there in her new digs and I think she will get the care that she deserves.

On the other hand I am pissed and feeling rather indignant regarding the treatment both she and I received from the care home I just moved her from. I tried talking to the director today with the intention of communicating, connecting, clearing and creating closure. Oh my God, that did so not happen. I called the Omsbudman and hope to have a meeting with him tomorrow.

I had no time today for dealing with the insurance companies, attorney, DMV, etc., etc., etc.

Jerry and I spent a good portion of last Thursday at the local Honda dealership buying a new Accord. We got the EX-L (leather) with sun roof and heated seats. I decided to indulge myself in the car I really wanted after being through (well, really I'm not through but still in the middle of) the hell I've experienced with the accident.

It's almost 9:00 p.m. and I'm ready for some downtime with my husband and an icy cold drink.

My Ego Says Fuck You

My Ego's Busting Me

I've been down for far too long
and my faith is nearly gone
I never knew somebody just like you...

I know that til I let go of my broken heart
I'm letting go to my open heart

I never meant to hurt you, no
And you never meant to hurt me too
But it seems like you always do
Yea, it seems like you always do

And even when I've fallen down
My heart says follow through
So I start to take one step closer to you
But then my ego says fuck you
Yea, my ego says fuck you
Fuck you, fuck you.


A shameful usage of Michael Franti's sweet words.

I Would Like You To Start Putting Things On The Table

I don’t want to be the only one here

Telling all the secrets –

Filling up all the bowls at this party,

Taking all the laughs.

I would like you

To start putting things on the table

That can also feed the soul

The way I do.

That way

We can invite

A hell of a lot more

Friends.

Hafiz

Monday, July 7, 2008

One Step Closer To You--Michael Franti

Michael Franti--One Step Closer To You

I've been down for far too long
'Til my faith was nearly gone
I never knew somebody just like you
Could be a friend I could call my own

'Til I let go of a broken heart
I let go to an open heart
I let go of my broken dreams
I let go to the mystery
And I believe in the miracles
I believe in the spiritual
I believe in the one above
I believe in the one I love

And take one step closer to you
I just take one step closer to you
Even when I've fallen down
My heart says follow through
I take one step closer to you

I never meant to hurt you, no
And you never meant to hurt me too
But it seems like you always do
And even though I'm scared sometimes
If ever see you fallen down
I will be the one that's there for you

So I let go of a broken heart
I let go to an open heart
I let go of my broken dreams
I let go to the mystery
And I believe in the miracles
I believe in the spiritual
I believe in the one above
I believe in the one I love

And take one step closer to you
I just take one step closer to you
Even when I've fallen down
My heart says follow through
I take one step closer to you

I just take one step closer to you
I just take one step closer to you

I keep on walking to you, I'm walking
I keep on walking to you, I'm walking
I keep on walking to you, I'm walking
And I'm never going to stop

Even when I've fallen down
My heart says follow through
I'll take one step closer
I'll take two steps closer

Just take one step closer to you
I just take one step closer to you




Michael Franti and Spearhead : Hello Bonjour

I spent my birthday at the High Sierra Music Festival in Quincy, California. Michael Franti was the headliner on Sunday. This is one of the great songs he sang, one of my favorites.

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

Kingdom Come with a Sprinkle of Miracles Please

Well it's been one helluva three weeks. I'm fairly exhausted and as soon as I'm done posting on this blog I've got get up and get going with my day. My sweetheart just left for work and we had some early morning fun together before he did. That was nice and I needed the connection. My eldest grand baby is out sleeping in my parlor. She's been with me since Saturday night which is when she and her mommy came over for my birthday party. Close to twenty women and three men came to play with me and what a lovely mixture they were. I really enjoyed myself and finally got to bed around 2:30. On Sunday morning six of us shared brunch and I made an exceptional quiche, my first. Later, my son and his girlfriend showed up for a little visit before we all headed off for a voice and piano recital and reception. Our friend's daughter just graduated high school and is heading off to NYU after a two week vacation in Mexico. She is a talented young woman and I'm looking forward to seeing her on Broadway. What a life we live!

Yesterday I ran around all day trying to take care of various things including finding an assisted care home for my mom--yes, after only one month I have to move her and please, don't get me started. You'll probably hear more on this later.

I also had an appointment with an attorney as I needed a little advice about how to proceed with the insurance companies regarding my car accident. I'll see what offers I get today and then decide whether it's in my best interest to turn my case over to him or not. For one thing, my car has been totaled and we now need to get on the ball and buy a new one. Not to mention the expenses of the rental car, chiropractor, massages, etc...as well as the hassle of it all...they call it pain and suffering and now I have to attach a monetary amount to that.

The motor home we bought is still at the mechanic. We were suppose to pick it up yesterday so we can head off on our maiden voyage but I didn't have one moment extra to deal with that. After I saw clients in the evening I realized all the chores I had neglected but I opted to take my granddaughter out for a gelato and then back home to watch Weeds at 10:00 and call it a day.

Tonight we have Dyad Communication at my house so I need to spend some time cleaning before running all over Kingdom Come again.

I have some intense emotional stuff going on right now and I'm praying for a couple/few miracles. Please God...