Friendship & Unfinished Business

Friends are stronger than darknessImage by Gilderic (OFF) via Flickr

Today “Wisdom a la Carte,” whom I heartily recommend for his presence on FaceBook, Twitter and his blog,, posed one of his usual great questions on his Facebook page, It was “have you been the kind of friend that you want as a friend?” I commented as follows:

Not since I have been sick. For many reasons, I withdrew from my friends, because I thought that I was protecting them. In hindsight, I regret it. I would not have been able to (still can’t) provide a balanced relationship, but especially when you are really ill, you need their friendship–if only for connection with the real world. Blessings.

Afterwards, I couldn’t get the question out of my mind. It was like a itch that I just couldn’t reach. and it suddenly dawned on me that I had some unfinished business. 

Before I was really sick, I think that, for the most part, I was all that I’d want in a friend.  When I became really ill, I changed, and I guess that changed as well.  For a multitude of reasons, I totally withdrew from my friends, because I thought that I was protecting them and was doing the right thing. I was in so much mental, emotional and physical pain that I did not want to subject anyone to that part of me. So, I choose to go into isolation–for years. In hindsight, I regret the decision, not only because I needed my friends, but at a much deeper level I think because I didn’t trust my friends enough to choose for themselves. They never had an opportunity to see the bad and the ugly because I made the choice for them.  Perhaps my decision was less about them than about my own fears that if they saw me at my worse that they would run like hell and no longer love me. Whatever their reaction, I should have allowed them to choose for themselves. I should have remembered that as the photo reminds me, true friends are stronger than darkness. I trust that they will forgive my lapse in judgment. I think that they will. Blessings.
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Baby Steps

Hallelujah! Today is the first day since my last post that my body has not been wracked with indiscriminate pain. No pity party here, just the facts. For the past 4 or 5 days, I have been engaged in an all too familiar battle–with fibromyalgia and migraines and the unyielding pain that both cause and the price they’ve cost me. This is a post about that struggle.

First came the migraines. They have been with me so long that I can no longer remember exactly when they began. I can’t even remember a time when they were not there-they’ve always been there. (For anyone who hears the word “migraine” and assumes ‘headache,’ please find accurate information for yourself and others at ). The fibromyalgia came much later and for some time was the mystery illness, but it has been the most devastating of the two. If you are unfamiliar with  fibromyalgia, go to the National Fibromyalgia Association,  I have allowed both to orchestrate and direct my life for far too long.

The duo became my mental, physical and emotional wardens, and I, their unwitting prisoner. They kept me from events, people, hobbies, and later my active attorney status,  making it impossible for me to commit to the very things that make life enjoyable. Nevertheless, for over a year, I’ve wanted to create a blog, both as a means of documenting “me” and my incessant seeking, and a way to write since I can’t actively practice law at this time. Yet, my desire to write goes back much further.

As a little girl, I wrote a little book by hand.  I can’t recall the topic, only the desire to write. Back then, it was no more than the silly dream of a poor, little, girl from a broken home–to escape the world in which I lived. Over the years, I’ve searched in all the wrong places for my authentic voice.You know, that “voice” that in the inimitable words of Supreme Court Justice Potter Stewart when trying to define hardcore porno, ” I know it when I see it.” Of course, I am not referring to the perhaps more scintillating topic of pornography, but the more prosaic ‘inner voice’ that elicits a sense of familiarity and home. For some of us, including yours truly, the feeling is significantly more profound. Over the years, especially due to events that I will speak to another time, I’ve out grown the voice that I worn all these decades. It just doesn’t suit me anymore; if it ever did.

It’s like continuing to wear a pair of exquisite, outwardly beautiful and coveted, shoes. They are the perfect style, an impossible to find color, BUT, they are now a half-size too small and they hurt like hell–from the moment I put them on my foot to the glorious moment that I can take them off. Naturally, when I tried them on in the store, they seemed to fit like a dream, but now, they just don’t fit. When you uncover your true voice, a voice that fits you and no other, you know it when you feel it. You slip into it, just like a perfect pair of shoes (hey, I can’t help it if I love shoes). Every fiber in your body awakens and begins to fire on all cylinders and the fit–it’s yours without a doubt. Maybe I’ll find that voice here, maybe I won’t, but I can’t find out unless I try. This time, I am not letting ‘my wardens’ get in my way.

I would be a liar if I claimed to have broken free of my long-time mental prison. No, I am what is known in the correctional institutional parlance, (I know this through my role as a former attorney for the State of Texas, representing state institutions, including its’ many prisons.) as a “trusty,” a well-behaved and trustworthy [prisoner] to whom special privileges are granted. Little by little, I will free myself from this duo, but for now, I am baby-stepping my way back into my life. This blog is one of those baby steps.

Blessings and love,