Friday, June 21, 2013

When the life of the mind should stay there.


I've been longing to speak to you. Dying to reach out and touch you. I want to share my rich internal monologue.


  • Should I get a pedicure?
  • Could I be a nun?
  • Why do people have lawns?
  • Do vitamins cause cancer?
  • Where is Trader Joe's?

My ex-husband said Roxanne, people don't get your humor. He meant he didn't get my humor, but he meant people, too. 

I dreamed I met an old friend for coffee so she could tell me what happened after we split up. She met a guy. There were sparks. She got pregnant, named the baby Columbia, tried to raise him but couldn't and allowed him to be adopted. She went to work for the Department of Social Services. She does gymnastics in long, modest, cotton skirts.

I read Pema Chödrön and try leaning into my feelings so I can be their friend, but don't find a lot of deep feelings there. Mostly a dull sadness. I don't judge it for its dullness, but invite it to sit down for tea as though it were sharp and scintillating and quick-witted. It does the same for me.

Someone told me I have a public and a private face, like everyone, but that I show each at inappropriate times. Like mooning a policeman, but wearing my clothes in the shower.

Tell someone something about your inner life today.  







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56 comments:

Kate said...

Currently my inner life consists of alternating layers of:

1) Being really, really angry at my mother for second-guessing all of my decisions, and;

2) Second-guessing all of my decisions.

Thinking: Not always the best thing for you.

On the up side, this weekend will involve living out of my car with both cats, so at least come Sunday I'll know how stupid that is and will just go buy a damn van already.

Good Luck Duck said...

Kate, all of this ⇧ true + funny.

Anonymous said...

..... and I thought it was just me.... could it be I have webbed feet?????

jillbertini said...

I have ALWAYS found you to be hilarious. Quack quack! Are we ducks of a feather, together? :)

Inner life: reminding myself I don't have control, but I have a choice. This is proving quite liberating.

Teri said...

I've always appreciated your sense of humor, and the fact that I get your humor makes me feel intelligent.

My inner person is dark and doubtful, she's tough to live with.

SwankieWheels said...

I adore the minutes I have spent with my two grandbabies yesterday and this morning... haven't seen them in 3 years... but found myself getting bored, not with them, but with their life in sticks and bricks. Found myself wanting to leave... enhanced by the presence of a cat and new dog. Then they began watching Shrek (which I gave them???) and became little t.v. zombies... starring blankly at the t.v. So... I can't get lost in all that again... and left. Today seeking out a "boondocking" spot near them and hope for some quality time with them away from the house... maybe in the backyard???? I don't know, I feel in the way??? Perplexed. I share it here... as it's unlikely they will find your blog.

RuthieBee said...

Quack quack and wow you are so wise my web-footed blogger. I think you have found your feelings and see them as the things they are, ephemeral like clouds against the diaphanous blue sky. They come and they go and we follow them sometimes and at other times leave them by the side of the road. You are an artist, feathered and in motion, how gracious it is you have wings. Love your insights.

RuthieBee said...

PS my inner life is my entire life. go figure!

VtChris said...

What inner life? You really have me searching for what that means. Do I even have one? Are my innards the same as my outers? What color is it? Where is it located? I recently order a book by Pema, but it went to the wrong address so someone else is getting wise.

Shadowmoss said...

My inner life seems to be reflecting on how no decision seems to be the right one. In the quiet times I seem to dwell on stupid things I've done in the past. I'm still cringing over things I did in grade school. I'm finding (cough) middle age to be easier, no one expects me to actually know anything, and I have little invested anymore in trying to prove I do.

Shadowmoss said...

But the real question I have for you is: do you have a can opener?

Morgan Johnson said...

start at about 1:04, about sums it up.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SvVqWqi36vE

Tesaje said...

If you wear your clothes in the shower, don't they get washed too? A little clammy tho. In retirement, I think my inner life is in synch with my outer life as there are no real compromises any more. Anything I do is by my choice and not because I need to eat. I like that. But I have tons of work to unravel my former life accoutrements to move onto my full life.

Desert Diva said...

1. Should I get a pedicure? - Absolutely, especially for the foot massage...

2. Could I be a nun? - You can be anything you really want to be, but it may not suit you in the long run.

3. Why do people have lawns? - Dogs like to pee and poop on lawns, and then they have to spend money to manicure them. Actually, go next door and ask Marvin (my 83-year old neighbor) he "loves" his lawn...

4. Do vitamins cause cancer? - Is there anything that doesn't?

5. Where is Trader Joe's? - Anywhere that the demographics support a "foo-foo" trendy grocery store.

Give the heavy thoughts a rest - live in the moment. It's the first day of summer! :-)

BoNanZa said...

Visualization...I have always gone to the beat of a different drum so I married ea different drummer! Sounds like you're ripe for a vision quest so make a big circle of rocks and lay in the middle for 48 hours and your answers will materialize. (Idk for sure, but it was on an episode of Jane Quinn Medicine Woman...seemed quite effective for a young indian boy :)

BoNanZa said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
BoNanZa said...

Just wanted to add there's a Trader Joes in Santa Fe and they have all kinds of vegan goodness in reasonably priced packages.

Donna K said...

My inner self is wondering why anyone would want long green spiky things growing out of the top of their head! That's just creepy, but she looks so serene...or maybe she's just in pain. Who can tell!

Jan Goldfield said...

Nun suits may not suit you. JMHO.

Cyndi and Stumpy said...

I ponder lawns... a lot!!!

Imagine the conversation The Creator might have had with St. Francis on the subject of lawns:

God: Hey St. Francis, you know all about gardens and nature. What in the world is going on down there? What happened to the dandelions, violets, thistle and stuff I started eons ago? I had a perfect "no maintenance" garden plan. Those plants grow in any type of soil, withstand drought and multiply with abandon. The nectar from the long lasting blossoms attracts butterflies, honey bees and flocks of songbirds. I expected to see a vast garden of colors by now. But all I see are these green rectangles.

St. Francis: It's the tribes that settled there, Lord. The Suburbanites. They started calling your flowers "weeds" and went to great lengths to kill them and replace them with grass.

God: Grass? But it's so boring. It's not colorful. It doesn't attract butterflies, birds and bees, only grubs and sod worms. It's temperamental with temperatures. Do these Suburbanites really want all that grass growing there?

St. Francis: Apparently so, Lord. They go to great pains to grow it and keep it green. The begin each spring by fertilizing grass and poisoning any other plant that crops up in the lawn.

God: The spring rains and warm weather probably make grass grow really fast. That must make the Suburbanites happy.

St. Francis: Apparently not, Lord. As soon as it grows a little, they cut it... sometimes twice a week.

God: They cut it? Do they then bail it like hay?

St. Francis: Not exactly, Lord. Most of them rake it up and put it in bags.

God: They bag it? Why? Is it a cash crop? Do they sell it?

St. Francis: No Sir. Just the opposite. They pay to throw it away.

God: Now let me get this straight. They fertilize grass so when it does grow, they cut it off and pay to throw it away?

St. Francis: Yes, Sir.

God: These Suburbanites must be relieved in the summer when we cut back on the rain and turn up the heat. That surely slows the growth and saves them a lot of work.

St. Francis: You are not going to believe this Lord. When the grass stops growing so fast, they drag out hoses and pay more money to water it so they can continue to mow it and pay to get rid of it.

God: What nonsense. At least they kept some of the trees. That was a sheer stroke of genius, if I do say so myself. The trees grow leaves in the spring to provide beauty and shade in the summer. In the autumn they fall to the ground and form a natural blanket to keep moisture in the soil and protect the trees and bushes. Plus, as they rot, the leaves form compost to enhance the soil. It's a natural circle of life.

St. Francis: You better sit down, Lord. The Suburbanites have drawn a new circle. As soon as the leaves fall, they rake them into great piles and pay to have them hauled away.

God: No. What do they do to protect the shrub and tree roots in the winter and to keep the soil moist and loose?

St. Francis: After throwing away the leaves, they go out and buy something which they call mulch. The haul it home and spread it around in place of the leaves.

God: And where do they get this mulch?

St. Francis: They cut down trees and grind them up to make the mulch.

God: Enough. I don't want to think about this anymore.

My Inner life? Depends... sometimes it's all about lawns, the next rig, the next stop, my Mom, my Dad... the mind travels.

Rebecca said...

Although I find my own inner dialogue to be mostly amusing, I suspect that if it were to be made public, most people would run away screaming in alarm.

Yours, however -- at least the part that gets made public here -- is a total hoot and still quite insightful.

My ex-partner once told me that other people are intimidated by me. I can't imagine who or where those other people are, though. I guess she just meant HER, because most everyone else just seems to grin and shake their heads.

So as for those other people who think they should tell you THEIR insights into YOU, Pema might tell you what the Buddha was supposed to have said: "If someone offers you a gift [ahem!] and you refuse it, to whom does it belong?"

(Jeez, I really dislike the word "inappropriate" when applied to actual human beings.)

Good Luck Duck said...

Every single comment here delights me. Delights.

Rebecca, I personally believe that if our inner lives amuse us, they have done their entire job. Everything else is icing. High-five!

Cyn, that's excellent. Did you write it? If someone doesn't feel sheepish after reading it here, I'll eat my hat. My chocolate hat.

Lol, Jan! But, they might become a habit.

Donna, she's the anti-Medusa. Instead of her hair turning you to stone, it helps soothe common kitchen burns.

Bonanza, a vision quest may be just the thing. I'll lay beside a pool, slathered in sunscreen, for 4 - 8 hours. Although, when Homer Simpson had his vision quest, he learned something else entirely. And, Santa Fe?? Get ready for me.

Cheryl, how about a Buddhist nun?

Mary, that seems like a peaceful state. I don't feel conflicted, but there are (thankfully) things I think that I don't say. Don't we all have loads of work? I think so.

LOL Morgan! I suspected that about you.

Shadow, that seems universal, that cringing over childhood gaffes that no one else remembers. And, yes. 79¢. The first time I use it, I'll learn why.

Chris, you may be one of those rare ducks - a fully-integrated person.

Ruthie, you're a poet! That's beautiful, and feathery!

Swankie, you're a restless soul, and you've found a way to rest. I can understand how their life must feel stifling to you now.

Thank you, Teri! You are very intelligent, although I don't think my humor is an accurate gauge. Your sense of your inner self as difficult feels universal, too.

Ooh, Jill, nice one! It's a paradox! It's a koan! It's SuperZen! I would be proud to be a bird of the same feather.

Anon ... it's EVERYONE!

I love how all this stuff is common to all of us, but we hide it, thinking it's bizarre. WE'RE BIZARRE!

Kess said...

Roxanne, I find your humor delightful, as do many who read your blog. Perhaps we all have some duck in us. We all have our brand of bizarre.

I grew up in a chaotic violent household. If I wasn't feeling fear or despair I felt dullness. I thought there was something wrong with me. After I left home I sought intensity through booze and drugs. After I got sober I chose crazy people to be in relationship with. Constantly searching for intensity. There's nothing like living in constant crisis to sweep away the dullness. But that gets old (eventually). I guess somewhere in my 50's I came to understand that the dullness was absence of crisis and fear and it was calm and peaceful. Today I love the calmness that I wake up feeling and go to bed with at night.

I have old self-chastising tapes that play in my head but I recognize it as habit and whisk it away.

The Buddhist nun thing is an attractive thought but I have opted for celibacy instead. I'm 61, sober 36 years and feel as though I have just come into my own. Enjoy your dullness.

Texas Yellow Rose said...

My inner self struggles/fluctuates from being totally content to feeling there must be something more. Went through a period earlier this year of feeling that I am not fulfilling my Karmic contract, not doing what I am SUPPOSED to be doing in this life. (By-product of recent cancer survivorship and not teaching Reiki as frequently as I did a few years ago.) Lately more at peace, with the thoughts that perhaps THIS is that destiny. I try to take one day, one hour, at a time. Life is good! Roxi, I not only get your humor but love it and you! (She said looking down to detect traces of webbing in her feet.)

klbexplores said...

I found I lived a lot of my life being, saying, doing what it is I thought or others though I should do. While I think it is so freeing to be in a place that I am able to consider what it is I want/need I also feel the universes hold trying to stuff me back into the expected/rejected role. Life is such a struggle at times its nice to poke fun at the realities and define our very existence on OUR terms even if it is just for a moment. Carry on!!

Brenda A. said...

I almost always get your humor (I can't lie, every now and then I have to really THINK to get it) and I love it!

Inner life "today" (believe me, it varies a lot day to day). Well....I'm trying to come to grips with the fact that what my heart desires (the desert) doesn't align with what our circumstances are right now. I'm trying to accept those circumstances and understand how they outweigh my desires right now. But it's not going well. I'm kind of angry about it all dammit. Today anyway.

Tesaje said...

@Cyndi - That's what I think of lawns - love it. I have what passes for a lawn complete with dandelions and other blooms. I like it when my lawn blooms. I pick up the grass and use it for mulch and don't pick up leaves at all. The wind will blow them into the corners.

Anti-Medusa - love it!

Harriet said...

Pedicures are good for your soul both of them!

Nun? If I were you I wouldn’t start any new habit.

Lawns give us the feeling of wide open space and control, simultaneously.

No Trader Joe’s down here just Whole Food Markets.

It seems everything causes cancer.

My ex never said anything worthwhile then or now so that takes care of that.

Never wore clothes in the shower but on occasion wore the backwards or inside out. (Results of getting dressed in the dark)

My humor has always been a bit off center so to me you are hilarious.

Inner me:
I want and want and want and when I get I wondered why I wanted it?

I want and want and want and when I don’t get I think it is because I am not ready to for it?

Why do I want and want and want, I just don’t get it?

I think we have been swimming in the deep end too, long, paddle over to the shore and prune your tail feathers. It’s a big pond and there is much adventure ahead enjoy each and every minute. Stop and smell the cacti and just be for a bit.

Anonymous said...

You have a wonderful sense of humor Roxi! Don't worry be happy or dull or whatever.... It's all ok. Maureen

Pam said...

I love your sense of humor. My inner life is an epic battle between the part of me that wants to let my freak flag fly and the part that worries about pretty much everything.

There's a song I listen to a lot that I think you would like. It's "Guaranteed" by Eddie Vedder from the "Into The Wild" soundtrack. Here are a couple of verses...

On bended knee is no way to be free/Lifting up my empty cup I ask silently/That all my destinations will accept the one that's me/So I can breathe...

Everyone I come across in cages they bought/They think of me and my wandering but I'm never what they thought/I've got my indignations but I'm pure in all my thoughts/I'm alive...

Leave it to me as I find a way to be/Consider me a satellite forever orbiting/I knew all the rules but the rules did not know me/Guaranteed...

ain't for city gals said...

The hardest thing(to me anyway) is to sit still by yourself and figure out what you want to do with the rest of your wild and wonderful life. You sound lonely..it is going to be that way for a bit. You sound like to need a little better and bigger living space and that might be....give yourself time. Be gentle with yourself...

Geri Moore-Hajek said...

My inner life is still being explored!

Gaelyn said...

Living in the NOW and forgetting to eat.

Sue Soaring Sun said...

I totally get your humor, Roxanne, and I also understand that some of what you say in jest you are not saying in jest at all. I'm the same way. I think that might be part of why we get along so very well. People sometimes tell me I'm funny when I'm dead serious, and I'd bet my last peso that happens to you, too.

I have a very rich inner life, something I've had to sometimes tell people who want to talk nonstop to me, and they look at me like, "Huh? What does that even mean?" Well, if you've got one, you know. If you don't have one, it's time to shut up for a while so you can get one (not you, Roxanne, you've definitely got one).

Whatever those inner voices say, listen. You don't have to act or make decisions or even think about it. Just hear it. Those inner thoughts, like emotions, are just energy, and you can let it pass through you. No action is necessary. They are just part of the fabric of your life...probably one of the most important parts.

You can also play with the ideas that your inner life throws at you. There are some great Halloween costume nun habits! Can you imagine showing up at a State Park in your nunny suit, then putting the tent on the Prius and going to sleep? Just think of the great double-takes you'll get!

My paintings and other artwork are all reflections of my inner life. People ask me, "Where on earth do you get your ideas?!," or, "Are you still doing psychodelics?!" Really...should I bother to tell them where my ideas come from? Only the ones who will understand, I think.

Today my inner self was uptight about the new lady that arrived at the resort where I'm staying. She has a loud, high, abrasive voice which she has been using nonstop, outdoors, a couple of spaces away from me, since she arrived this afternoon. I've had thoughts of moving and of strangling her. I thought about talking to her about her voice, but I have too much practical experience with loud people to bother. They don't listen. So instead I'm going to ask Steve to please go ahead and install the XM radio in the rig, something that's been on the to-do list since I bought the Beluga. I'm gonna listen to jazz to cover up the sound of this lady's voice.

This is where my inner life takes me--from being so uptight I think my head's gonna explode to finding gentle, happy solutions. The inner life is part of everything, from the bad/sad/mad beginning to the more positive result. I hope the same is true for you, my friend.

wheelingit said...

All I can say is that your inner life is waaaay more colorful than mine. Most of my inner thoughts revolve around sleeping, walking and eating....oh sh*t, I've become a dog?
Nina

Good Luck Duck said...

MORE delight. This is a comment thread I'll read again.

Lol Nina - I doubt it. You couldn't be as interesting as you are if that was your inner life. You're just channeling Polly.

Sue, that was really great. It felt like someone was telling me a soothing story. You do get my humor, and you get when it's humor and something else. I LLOLed at the nun's habit because OMG FUNNY. I saw the whole thing. I'm sorry about that loud woman who thinks "outdoor voice" is literal.

Oh no, Gaelyn! Bring food with you into the now! That's what I do. I pack a lunch for the now.

That's great, Geri!

Good advice, AFCG. I will continue to be gentle with myself, and make friends with Lonely when it shows up. And see what shows up next. Thanks.

Pam, thanks for that song. I've listened to it a few times since you mentioned it. I like it. I vote for letting your freak flag fly. Worry can go worry about itself.

Ha, Maureen! Thanks. It IS all okay, isn't it?

Harriet, that's all hilarious and wise simultaneously! Your wanting and wanting and wanting and (not) getting it. Funny and true.

Isn't that the truth about lawns! Plus, those dandelions are edible. And beautiful.

Brenda, anger sounds just about right. You've been through too much not to be pissed off.

Karen, ain't that so!! I spent way too many of my young years in that fruitless pursuit. I suspect it isn't the universe trying to shove you back in. More likely those old Shoulds from your youth. Tell them to should-up. You may have to tell them more than twice.

Aw, Betty. ♡♡ You're allowed to just be. In fact, that is probably what you're supposed to do. Hugs.

Kess, more ♡♡♡ to you, too. Dull is beautiful, absolutely. I"m so glad that you recognized its beauty and don't have to chase the thrill anymore.








Sherry said...

Wow it took me all day to read the great comments. Now I forgot the post and was there a question?? You have some terrific readers. Could I borrow them?? Well actually, could I keep them? They seem so wise and full of substance. I could really use both.

Good Luck Duck said...

Aren't they great? You can borrow, but you can't have them to keep; I need them.

Nancy said...

I think people don't get my humor either. It is very telling when I am talking and they cock their heads like dogs with their person saying "blah, blah, blah, Rover".
I get your humor and so do many others. Ignore those who don't until they see the light. And then turn the light off and on in quick succession as a sort of virtual head thumping, do this until they apologize for the error of their ways.

JO said...

Looking like I did 20yrs ago. Thin I keep thinking thin but it doesn't work. HMMMmmm

Donna said...

I do get your humor. I don't know if that's a good thing or scary. :-D I mentioned once that reading your posts is like falling down the rabbit hole. It still is but it's definitely a witty and intelligent experience. And you have witty and intelligent readers. I've enjoyed, laughed and copied down some of what people have said here. "I don't have control but I have a choice." is one that I have to remember and remind myself about so I can get through... everything!

I too, feel as if I'm an "off" person. I have never felt that I fit in with any type/group of people, at least for very long. I'm good with everyone up to a point, then I have to get away. So, I have different types of friends for the different aspects of myself. The healers, the sci-fi/fantasy lovers, the neighbors, the co-workers (when I had some), and so on. I used to lament that I spread my interests and talents too thin and that I wasn't "great" at any one thing. Finally a counselor, long ago, told me that is what makes me interesting. I never before thought of it as a plus. It's something I was so grateful to hear but I do have to keep reminding myself of that.

Isn't it funny (NOT ha-ha) that spouses like to tell us of our "quirks" and how those phantom other people don't like that about us. It's also interesting that many times it's those quirks are why they loved us in the first place.

I am very appreciative of this thread today. There was so much that I needed to really hear today. Thank you to all!

Andra Watkins said...

Don't become a nun, Roxanne. Your public and private faces would go to war, and the private one would win at the worst possible time, and it would probably be hysterically funny but unnecessary. Skip Trader Joe's and have a pedicure with an extra large glass of wine instead.

When MTM harps on one of my quirks, he always mad about something else. Food for thought, Dear. xo

Theresa said...

I like your humor. You crack me up! Or, should that be quack me up?

Good Luck Duck said...

Thanks, Theresa! Everything should always be quack.

Oh, insightful comment, Andra! Mad about something else. Yes, that makes sense. It's funny, that's exactly the combo I chose: pedicure + wine. And, maybe I'll be happy with Sue's suggestion of car-camping in my thrift-store habit costume. I can't see how that would offend anyone.

Donna, I'm so glad you shared that; I also have always felt not especially great at any one thing. And, i'm an introvert, too. I enjoy people, but then I run out of Me and have to go fill up.

You're right about the love/annoyance pairing.

Jo, the cheese has an inner life of its own, and it's very powerful.

Nancy, I like this idea. A literal head-thumping might feel better in the moment, but my hand would hurt and the thumpee would have a sad, confused look. Keep workin' the humor and let the heads tilt.

intrepid-decrepit-traveler said...

Um, the zucchini enchiladas I made for dinner are resting comfortably in my innards. Is that what you mean?

Good Luck Duck said...

Precisely.

LG61820 said...

Sometimes life doesn't conform itself to our plans. Mine hasn't recently and neither has yours. I have been stifling my inner voice and my goals & dreams. This has resulted in a weight gain of several pounds because keeping myself quiet requires lots of vodka and junk food!

If you can, speak your inner monologue, live the life you dream of. I am not strong enough to do it in the face of a job promotion and someone's 5-year-old child who needs a home.

I think you are strong enough. I will live thru your adventures until I am strong enough to have my own!

I looked through your blogroll and didn't see, but may have missed http://2completespirits.com/
a hetero couple living in a van. LG









Good Luck Duck said...

I do have those guys, thanks! On the vandweller blogroll.

It sounds like you are plenty of strong, if there's a five-year-old in your home. Maybe you can live today's life and still speak your mind? I mean, heck, hold onto the vodka and Ho-Hos, just speak your inner life too.

Anonymous said...

Interesting indeed! I see that I exist only as the stories I've told myself about who "I" am. That's why I can change like a chameleon whenever it suits me. I can be whoever I want to be in the moment. I can be a saint, a sinner, a liar, a thief, a good Samaritan...all on a whim.

The words I use to label myself limit me. Who I am, what I do, the existence that is "me" is just energy flowing...like a steady rock, like a stealthy jaguar, like a sweet old lady, like a boring professor, like a slug. The words don't do the movement of "me" justice.

Sh!t, I'm pontificating again. Loudmouth...another one of my personalities...in this moment.

You know me as MLCruiser. I know myself as a mindless shape-shifter.

And then there's silence.

Good Luck Duck said...

MLC, you know my stories have subsided - not much left to stick to.There are still jagged bits, though, for them to cling to, like cat hair to stucco.

Mary said...

People have lawns (or yards as we say here in KY) so they don't get dirt on their feet.

If Dr. Suess were a duck he would be you.

My mother met a nun in the hospital once. The nun confessed to smoking, drinking, and swearing. She also told Momma a dirty joke. So yeah, I could be a nun.

Good Luck Duck said...

Haha Mary! If I were a doctor, I'd be Seuss.

Nundom doesn't sound so bad after all!

Karyn Lee said...

Intraspective. Wow.
Find myself looking out the window alot lately. Not liking the job.
Maybe I could be a nun. Would definitely qualify.
But then there is a child there... how to convince it was immaculate conception...
Maybe there's a book on that. Off to Amazon!

Kirsten Pierce said...

Roxanne I just love you. that is all. and your friends--they are an incredible group, too.

Kirsten Pierce said...

Roxanne I just love you. that is all. and your friends--they are an incredible group, too.

Good Luck Duck said...

Karyn, if your child is seven or older you're good. I read that somewhere.

I love you, too, Kirsten, and my friends are amazing.

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