Sunday, January 11, 2009

She Still Only Wears Lavender

From the daughter of the Scar Clan who still only wears lavender for she is yet to earn her cloak of purple:

To the Mother of the Scar Clan who walks with the lavender daughter in every step and soothes her scars with ointments of purple rhyme and passionate stories:

To the Mother of the Scar Clan who cools the chafed skin of a journey the lavender daughter never foresaw but will travel willingly because the Purple Mother paved the way with brilliant hues of purple wonder.

The journey will be swift and mastered with great ease for petals of lilac and lavender line the path!

Written after reading "The Women Who Run With Wolves

Written after reading "The Women Who Run With Wolves

To run with the wolves is a hard journey. One undertaken with trepidation, yet wonder. As the path changes I sometimes stumble and fall, biting at the dirt. As time passes my footpads become calloused and hard so the thorns and jagged rocks along the path no longer cut nor bruise. As the path widens the sky clears and my vision becomes keener. My eyes glow with wonder at all that lays before me. In the distance, the image of one who runs before me is brilliant on the horizon. I pant with exertion to catch up. The anticipation of being taught the steps to completion is breathtaking. As I stride closer to the horizon the face of the image becomes clear. It is myself.

I challenge you to make a date with society.

No greater love, no greater devotion, no stronger will than that of a parent. Not just an everyday run-of-the-mill parent but the parent of a special needs child who chooses to keep their child in the home as long as is possible. Kept in the home to nurture and love, to learn to respond and hopefully find their own niche in society.

No greater frustration, no greater defeat, no greater depression than that of the parent who chooses to keep their disabled child in the home for as long as is possible. In the home to seize the nights with spasms, deplete all monetary assets and monopolize the very existence of the entire household.

No greater feeling of joy, no greater feeling of depression than that realized by the parent who holds faith in the children of society who are feared, mocked, ridiculed and sometimes even abandoned. Have you ever witnessed the look of defeat in the eyes of these same noble parents whose tearful eyes have long since dried, when faced with the foreboding realization that placement is inevitable.

Have you ever witnessed the Olympic Games where the muscles are not sculpted and well formed, where the eyes do not see clearly, and the ears do not hear the sounding round of the crowd as the they cross the finish line? Have you ever attended a school staffing where the future of these children rest in the hands of strangers? If you have answered no to any of these questions I have put before you, you are blind to the plight of joy and struggle of one of humanities greatest assets. To witness such things, humbles you to your knees as you begin to comprehend the magnitude of strength found in the hearts of these families.

With this I challenge you to make a date with society. A date with humanity in it's rarest form, a date with courage in it's ultimate creation. Make a date to spend just one day in the presence of greatness. A date with a special needs family.

Barbara Fulghum-Clemmons

Fleeting memories of bonded relationships as my companion.

Restless days and sleepless nights wishing you could be at my side gives me time for contemplation and resolve. No more will I beg for affirmation from another's soul journey. My own destination will take me farther than to travel another's path. You've unfolded your maps and charted your course and now there's no turning back.
Why oh why does it feel so scary to know that a new journey must begin because the other will never be complete. When will I ever find someone to share my path and not be afraid to walk beside me hand in hand. Will I ever know for sure or is the damage so deeply carved that only solitude and self can repair the wounds. Here I go yet again wondering why and if the wounds ever heal.
First wrote those lines 20 years ago and they still echo in my ears and shout to my soul to please find the cure. Where is the antic dote to an illness of possibly my own making. Will my journey ever be over or is life truly a journey and not just a destination. Does anyone know the answer, or is there one?

To journey alone is a fearful thought, yet as I travel there are sure to be others along the path who have marched before me and greet me with warnings of caution yet wishes of God-speed.
My resolve to pursue avenues of accomplishment have always included the sharing of the path with a supportive hand. To my downfall I seem to choose those who struggle to read their own road-maps and inevitably I disregard the street signs and follow a route which differs with my own.
It is with great trepidation and granted a bit of fear, I seemingly am destined to be alone in my travels, with only fleeting memories of bonded relationships as my companion.
My path is sure to be winding at certain times of growth yet I embark with cautious optimism that I will find my way, albeit with no one to share it with. How dreadful to think of sharing this with only acquaintances and not someone who pursues the same path or at least an adjoining one.
Many will journey this trail and be afraid, yet I know that along the way those of us who dare shall intertwine with those who were brave enough to go before.
Reality dictates that we are truly never alone as long as we travel lightly in our spirit so that the baggage we acquire along the way is not too burdensome to carry.
Pain and memory begin my journey with me as I carry only a small travel case to hold my writings and ambitions.This leaves me with one hand free to grasp at the stars and the promises that surely lay ahead.
Why my path was mapped this way I will leave for the angels to ponder for me until I reconcile the messages in each path, doing so with respect to myself and those heroes who have trod ahead.
The hopes and dreams of peoples and nations have been founded on the ambitions and sacrifices made by single souls who dare to follow the path set for them from the onset of time.
I dare to be egotistical enough to believe that I too have a responsibility to those yet to come to lay footpaths for them and their children. How dare I, some may say, but that does not deter me.
I can only envision those who question my resolve, wrapped in the timeless task of attempting to re-fold their own maps on the creases, as if it really matters. As for me I shall pin my maps upon the walls of my soul's hallway and not worry about the prefabricated folds.
So with this in mind I lay out my journals, enter these thoughts, and begin my travels. Perhaps along the way, our paths shall intertwine at a crossroads and I will welcome you to share my fire.
Until then I shall assume your maps are neatly folded and tucked away in the dashboard pocket of your spirit. Should you ever desire to journey with me it should be easy to find me. Just look on the wall in the hallway.

Like Mother, Like Daughter

Like Mother, Like Daughter

I look into those eyes, so much like my own and see the future. I see excitement about new adventures. Don't look back child, have no regrets, only carry lessons from old adventures that caused pain or stagnation. How do I let you go when I'm so afraid of what the world holds. How did mama let me go knowing all she did, that she tried to share and I refused to acknowledge.

How was mama strong enough to watch me as I stumbled along making mistakes and making her worry that all her hard work had been for nothing.

Some day you will understand that all that anyone ever truly has is TIME. Time lost is never regained to be used again. Once that moment of connection with friends or family is gone it is never regained or to be used.

One moment wasted is one moment lost on the winds of time never to be recouped. Each of us is given a certain amount of time on earth to use. Go wisely and hold time dearly for once it is spent it is never retrieved.

Nether World or Children’s Folly

Nether World or Children’s Folly

I dressed up like a witch Halloween night and didn't feel the least bit evil. No I was not attired to howl at the moon nor was I going to mix a magic potion, I was on a journey. A journey through the world of a child's wildest imagination.
Some dressed as pirates, gypsies, babies, queens and some just dressed as dads. We parked our trick-or-treat mobile in front of a perfect strangers house and began the journey.
As we neared the first turn in the street a stranger approached us and we were not afraid. Had it been any other night we would have reached for our keys or screamed for someone to call 911. She just stopped us to apologize for not being home to give us our treats but if we would come back in twenty minutes she would be there. You see she was with her son trick-or-treating too. A single women for a walk to strangers houses on a dark street? That's just unheard of in this day and age. Oh, what a wicked night Halloween is!
Halloween is the only time of year that children loose their fear of and momentarily forget the creatures of the night. Creatures we call poverty, sadness, disease, fear;etc.
They courageously walk up to a stranger's door and know that a friendly face is waiting to greet them on the other side. A complete stranger finding delight in seeing the joy on children's faces. How can that be evil. The rules are really simple,too. If you don't want to play just leave your porch light off. The children will understand.
Halloween is the only time of year that children are allowed to pretend to be their greatest heroes or become and overcome their greatest fears. Halloween! Nether World or Children's Folly?

Journal of a Divorce because the will to love fights a hard battle

Journal of a Divorce

10:30 p.m. April 29, 1993
I had originally planned to use this journal in the vein that it was given; love. However after the last few days I have been through I must use it to relieve the pain of being in a situation of no escape. Yet I know I cannot stay. I am afraid all the time. I never know when he is going to loose control or who is going to get hurt or what will be damaged.
Tonight as I watched him spill his drink down his shirt and his soup in his lap he told one of the most influential men from my company to kick his dog in the head I knew there was no way to live with this indignity.-- I cannot count the times that he has acted that way in front of people I work with. Such potential yet no ambition. I don't understand. My heart breaks to see this gentle man turn into a staggering fool. There is nothing left but for me and the girls to go it on our own from here. I know of no other way.

April 30,1993
I tell him what he did and he only looks at me bewildered He doesn't even remember. God help me. He doesn't remember trying to punch me when I took his keys. He doesn't know why his knuckles are busted and bruised.

July 27,1993
Oh God. I filed a restraining order against my husband today. Why did he have to turn on the girls. I was working out of town for the day. Why couldn't he wait for me to get home. He could have beat me instead of hitting a little girl. The whole neighborhood knows he is an abuser and I am an idiot. I thought since I stood up to him he would stop. He only backed off me to start on the girls and when he finished he scared them into not telling me about his abuse and rage. How many times have I thought they were safe when they really were not. Will I ever know.

July 28, 1993
Only graphite and lined page before me and my heart dripping in my hand. How will I ever make it through this? The restraining order in effect only 24 hours and I feel like I could die. How do I feed them? How do I pay the bills?

August 15, 1993
I will be 32 years old tomorrow. Tomorrow I take my husband, lover, father to my children to court. This is supposed to be a joyful time yet the birthdays that I can remember Elvis died I had a hysterectomy my husband tried to kill me with a pistol and I am taking my husband to court.

August 16, 1993
Dressed like a bankers wife I meet my attorney- look my husband in the eye, tell the judge he put a gun to my head and abused my children- Happy Birthday- Not a good place to be on your birthday is it the judge ask.
His mom and dad don't seem to be able to understand. What else could I do?

August 19, 1993
Soul searching is the hardest thing in the world to do when the shadows of the past run a muck. You never know whose eyes you can trust to be true. Casualties of my life's war fall in the darkened alleyway and I still have to face another day. The freedom of truth cost dearly as the friendly eyes of the present swell with the secret tears of the past. I have to face yet another day of churning as the predictability of human nature rings true.

I would have understood if he had told me he was having a hard time dealing with my being sick so he had an affair. But when he said it was because I was not there for him I was heartbroken. I was not there for him because I was bedridden for 3 months with meningitis.

August 20, 1993
Nancy, Donna, Debbie my saving grace, all just listen and try to help as best they can. I don't know what help I need. Nothing will make the pain of loosing the love of my life go away.

August 24,1993
Boxes, Boxes in a stack filled with emotions and things I lack. Afraid of the answers, not knowing the questions, searching the soul for lost reflections. Where do I stop to find the truth, Why does it hurt so much, Why do I flinch at his tender touch. Curled in a ball, embryo. Revealing the time when I didn't know all the pain this world can hold. Boxes, boxes deeper still looking for truths I may never fill. Boxes, boxes everywhere, the covers taped, the covers sealed. If I don't get away from him everything that I am will be destroyed.

August 26,1993
Time passes so quickly as summer turns to fall and the autumn winds bring rain. Will we ever survive the evening storms of a marriage gone haywire?

1st appointment at Legal Aid

Tattered carpet on the floor to match no 'welcome mat' at the door. What is broken besides the box of toys in the corner? Me, I'm broke, 12 dollars to my name, name that isn't even mine. My marriage broken a very long time. Legal aid is free if you qualify and have time to wait I've gone from 60 thousand a year to broke with one swift punch. I've waited twelve years for this madness to end. Divorce nine months from start to finish. Longer that my courtship, harder than death, same as dying, feel like crying, children drifting, thoughts slipping. Why did it take so long? Because the will to love fights a hard battle. My stomach aches, I taste blood as my heart breaks.

August 27,1993
I've hung out a shingle, HANDY MAN SPECIAL: Single mother of four; lonesome, afraid, broke. Broken spirit, broken heart? How do I mend this?

August 29, 1993
The hard is what makes it great-if it wasn't hard everyone would do it. (I just might make it after all) Will he ever know how I felt all those years and does it really matter. I know how I feel now; I am better and get stronger each day.

Oct 1,1993
He got DUI today. His true colors surface for the world to see as I stop running block for him. You’re on your own from here on out big boy. Can't blame me anymore.

I can't light your path for you anymore. I must go before I loose myself in the shadows of your journey. The trail you choose to follow has started to grow over with vines of pain, slowly choking me. My soul blood runs free from the scrapes from the vine's thorns and I am becoming weak. I know I must flee and mend my wounds before I slip into unconsciousness. The edge of your darkness is far to craggy for me to balance and I find myself about to topple over the edge. I wish you God-speed and safe passage but you must go it alone without me from here. The voyage you must take from here is filled with too many sea dragons cresting with the tide and I have had to slay too many for you already.

January 6, 1995
I look back at my writing and realize how far I have come and it is wonderful and exciting. I am no longer afraid of the things that go bump in the night or anothers caress. I'm going to be ok.

January 12,1995
He said once that no one had ever taken care of me the way he had and no one ever would. He's right! I can do it better and I will. My four little angel girls adjusting well to the peace of consistency and schedules. We will be fine in spite of him and his thinking that a mother of four, on chemotherapy with only GED can't make it without him.

Life, as with nature, has many seasons.

Life, as with nature, has many seasons. Some as torrential as the Arctic storms yet others as calming as spring rain. When faced by the bitter winds of an arctic storm our natural instinct is to build an igloo and retreat until the spring rains begin to thaw the cold.. Our God-given instinct tells us to find shelter within ourselves so as not to become as bitter the winter winds. Occasionally, we venture outside to find snow drifts camouflaging our path, forcing our retreat into the comfort of our icy shelter, to ponder the soul’s mysteries. However, seasons do recede with time's passing and the dandelion shoots of spring find their way through the frozen earth. All are challenged to begin anew by the bursting colors mysterious rebirth. The dormant stage of introspect and hibernation are necessary for new growth and rejuvenation in every species. Everything passes through it's own season of bitter cold. It is those who build the strongest shelter and prepare for the next budding of green or onslaught of frigid winds who are the great facilitators. These are the story tellers of old that dare to take the chance of pondering the universe. These are the ones who dare to challenge the turbulence of time and energy of spirit, all searching for completion. These know the truths that are as enduring as the four seasons yet just as mysterious. They seek the quizzical answers of truth because the answers are the definition of the question. The beginning is the end and the beginning. bfc jan '95


I have the grouchiest old neighbor you could ever imagine. Sometimes late at night when I'm just settling down to sleep he starts throwing rocks at my house.
This may sound crazy but the attacks make my whole body hurt sometimes. I don't know why he picked me to live beside. I like to think it is because I'm special.
Now, you would think that a grouchy neighbor, that also happens to be old, would go to bed early, but this one keeps strange hours.
From time to time the authorities have been called in and warnings have been issued, but he is an ornery old cuss. He has been bothering people since 1957 but he will just not go away. He's just a bit eccentric and no one knows where he came from or how to make him go away. They just know that the pressure he has put on neighbors in the past is sometimes deadly. The only thing that can stop his deadly aggravation is a sense of humor and a positive way of looking at things.
I need to rectify my ramblings just a bit so a clearer picture of my neighbor can be seen. You see I have a syndrome called Behcet's Syndrome.
I believe that everything in life must contain a gift or we would not otherwise be involved in the situation. The way I deal with this disease is the same way I would deal with a grumpy old neighbor.
I smile and leave cookies on his doorstep and just try and be polite. My syndrome and I just happen to have chosen the same neighborhood as my body to live in and we have learned to get along.