Crossroads Crossing

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I am at a crossroads in my life,

Turn left for a wild dream, an impossible possibility

Keep right to continue the course I’m on,

chained to my desk, in my cubicle, confined.

It’s not a cell if there are no bars, right?

Golden handcuffs encircle my wrists, keeping me from straying.

I have been here for two decades already and feel as if

I’m at the Hotel California, workday edition.

I can check out anytime I like, but I can never leave

(well, at least not until I’m 55)

It’s a place of topsy-turvy logic, where the rare and ever-elusive

common sense is supposed to roam, but I have yet to see it.

Where bad and mediocre are rewarded,

good is overworked, anonymous and taken for granted,

worked into the ground, ground into bits.

I ask myself – how much more can I take?

Of biting my tongue so much I have only a stump left

and words pile up likerocks in an empty well,

Feelings of frustration and stagnation rule the day.

Perhaps the crossroads really isn’t about choosing a direction or changing course;

maybe it’s more about attitude and acknowledgment.

Acknowledging the fact that with the soul-sucking atmosphere of any cubicle colony,

comes a steady income and the sense of security.

Keeping an attitude of gratitude and understanding that today’s hardships are

the lessons I’ll need tomorrow.

Understanding that wherever I go, I take myself with me.

Of having faith that there is a greater good and a reason for it all;

Knowing that this, too shall pass.

It all shall pass and all too quickly for the good times, the days of summer and

the wild nights that only youth in its arrogance can orchestrate.

In their place now are quiet nights of contemplation and relaxation,

Looking forward to a new chapter, a new direction and creating new memories,

Traveling and exploring, finding beauty in everyday life,

love in everyday interactions.

I am at a crossroads and I close my eyes, spin in a circle then open them,

walking forward, trusting my intuition to guide me.

With an open mind and my preconceived notions unpacked and left behind,

I move forward, always forward, away from the past, fully living in the present, heading

for a future that is unknown yet I’m certain full of promise.

25 Years Ago Today

I was dressed in blue, wearing a dress borrowed from my big sister. My engagement ring was my mother’s and my band something we picked up at a pawn shop. Our son was there, 6 months old, a testament to the fact that there was great love between us. We were so young, I realize now; not just young in our ages, but young in the naive belief that this would last forever, that we would live “Happily ever after” and grow old together, holding hands across the distance of our rocking chairs. We would bounce grandchildren upon our knees, having raised our children with great love and instilled in them a sense of how important family is, how important our history is and what our gifts to mankind will be. I believed that with the bond of our love, nothing would separate us, nothing could break us apart; it would carry us through all that Life would send our way. I believe those are thoughts any bride should have on her wedding day, but I also believe that what was missing from those thoughts was how to live such a life; sacrifice, compromise, constant communication and a whole lot more things that I still (to this day) can’t put a name to. I just know that when I have talked to couples who have managed to stay married, there are a lot of things specific to that couple that they practiced that made the difference between staying together and breaking apart. I had never really figured out what would have made the difference with us; maybe if I had refused to follow the expected norm and get married, we would have been able to focus on being parents without the stress of having to make a marriage work as well. Maybe if I had confided more in him, instead of trying to always appear as if I had the answers, I was in control and I was never scared or uncertain. I could maybe from here to eternity and it would not serve to change anything from the past. What I can do is believe that there is someone out there for everyone (not just one person, someone for every part of your life, some for the entirety of your life, but mostly someone to love and to be loved by) and if I am able to drop the walls I’ve built up to guard my heart, if I can be brave enough to trust that heart to someone, to risk being hurt, being rejected or worse of all, found unworthy of such love. If I can trust my instincts well enough to recognize someone who is good and honest, worthy of trust and capable of great love, I will find my happiness with another. But it is a great journey from thinking the thought and taking the action, making the change. I can speak of dropping walls, but I have no idea how to do that. Perhaps this is where the intuition comes in; I have rarely been disappointed when I make a choice based on my “gut feeling” but I have found myself in dire straits when I refuse to heed that warning/feeling.

I guess the main point of all of this is to celebrate my first and only attempt at marriage, recognize that it is nothing to fear, nor to be ashamed of, but as with everything in life, it is something to learn and to grow from. I did not plan for things to end the way they did, but I have a gorgeous, funny, smart, talented, loving son and the experience of being a wife and a mother for a few years. I have had many more years as a single woman, no serious relationships, no ties that bind (love that expression) and if God or the Universe or Fate or whatever decide that I am worthy of a second chance at love, I will not waste that opportunity. I will work to tear down the walls, open my heart and invite love in.