Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Life Interrupted

Simplicity is hard to achieve, and yet it sounds so simple. It's not. There's no such thing as a peaceful and quiet life. The simple things start acting up: small and major appliances start to breakdown, roof repairs due to leaks, schedules that push away family and friends, a loved one gets ill, a loved one passes, and on and on. Life isn't made to be simple. I found that out the hard way. Yes, they tell me to 'dance in the rain' and 'be calm during the storm', but sometimes, it's kind of frustrating when it feels like you just never get a break from any of these 'small inconveniences' in life. And when the big inconveniences come waltzing through -- you're just dumbfounded. You get the hazy mile long stare and lose hope of anything good; anything simple. It seems impossible.

And then there's faith.

Things aren't always what they seem.
Sometimes I call it the "rose colored glasses syndrome" because I have held my faith for so long and with diligence, and find myself dropping everything saying, "I give up." I try my best to do the right thing, but it seems unnoticeable to most, or to the one person who means the world to me. When I'm having a good streak of luck, I get sick or my back goes out or my digestive system rips me into pieces where I cannot leave my house. I end up at the doctor's and get a zillion tests to prove that nothing's wrong with me.

"Go on with your life. You'll be fine." 

I'm one of those types of people who doesn't ask for much at all. I don't want a $3,000 dollar purse. I don't care to get an $800 dollar pair of shoes. I don't want to match up anything with anything. (As long as it's not plaid.) I just want a microwave that won't shoot fireballs out from the vents, a simple coffee maker (I'm using a 1950's percolator now) and maybe even throw in a $5 t-shirt so I can till the garden once this rain stops.

But there is hope.

My family. They're the world to me. I want a peaceful life knowing that my family will be here, laughing as we always do together, watching our pets play out in the yard and BBQs throughout the entire summer. I want LIFE. I don't want to have to keep life afloat and what I mean is -- I don't want materialistic things that'll have me in debt till I'm pushing up daisies. If ever I had to move out of this house and rent some small shoebox studio apartment -- I'd hook that bitch up and make it my own. Like I said, I am not about the money, the fame, the 'keeping up with the Joneses life' --- I'm "me" and I will never change in that aspect.

Busy-busy-busy-busy. Everyone's so incredibly busy. Slow down. Life's way too short. I remember Dad always saying, "Ya know sumptin' -- it was like yesterday I was starting my own business in my teens. And like that (snapping his fingers) I'm sitting here at the age of 75 dying of cancer. Where'd it all go, Deb?" God I miss him… But he was right. I'm sitting here at the age of 40 remembering my first apartment at the age of 23 and cooking my first dinner in a small kitchen. I was so happy. And like that (snap) I'm here, thinking, "Did I miss out on life?"

We're so busy trying to get "there" that we're not even noticing what's right under our noses "here".  The words, "Yes, let's get together soon" has now translated into, "You'll probably never see me again unless I post something up on Facebook." We don't even get a chance to miss people because of this goddamn social media bullshit. We remember birthdays only by Facebook's reminders that come flying through our smartphones. When was the last time you wrote a handwritten letter?

When was the last time you truly enjoyed life?

We take many things for granted, especially the people in our lives. Newsflash: They're not always going to be around! I remember sitting on the couch watching the Yankees with my father drinking gin and tonics. My father was never the touchy-feely-compassionate kinda guy, but you were confident he loved you to death by his actions. But that night was different. He knew he had cancer and was flying in and out of hospitals and radiation. He was so tired. He took my hand, held it and started talking about all the fun things we did together and all the vacations we took. We spoke about the first time him and I went fishing together on the ocean in Montauk. I got to tell him I loved him while holding his hand. I got to tell him he was my best friend growing up. I got to tell him everything I needed to tell him.

Not many people get that chance.

There are a billion and one quotes out there on social media and the internet that say, "Tell em' you love them while they're still here" --- and all that is nice, but we read it every single day. Have we become immune to it? I have that relationship with my mother. I tell her I love her every chance I get and show her by actions the best to my ability, and she of course, does the same. We go shopping together, go out for dinner together and try to gather up the family as much as we can. She's the staple in this family that binds us together. My sisters and myself have this incredible best friend: Mom. Every second, every moment counts, even if you're endlessly looking for appliances in Home Depot every week. It's so worth it.

I also try letting my close friends know how much they mean to me. But there's this quiet distance that sort of takes center stage -- an unknown, unspeakable pseudo feeling that makes us think, "Nah, they'll be around if I just keep busy for a while." And when you come back from all that busyness, it may be too late.

The same goes with relationships and marriages. If you don't water the foundation you two stand on, it'll never grow, nor will it sustain the inevitable storms. And they will come. It throws you off course when you're too busy and unavailable to water your garden of eden (or so you thought). So, you become distant, cold, almost robotic. The same routine drills into your days, weeks, months and years -- so then, the distance becomes that much greater. And in some cases, you become more like roommates -- passing ships in the night with no real quality time to give to your partner. And so, the other one looks away…looks for another ship to save her while the ten o'clock news blares away in the background. Throw on your life preserver because it's either, save your ship or call for help. Help usually arrives in the form of another ship willing to take on the precious cargo that you couldn't carry yourself.

For more of Deb's articles, please visit: www.debrapasquella.com or join her on Facebook and Twitter. Check out her cooking blog for some of her famous recipes!