May 20, 2019

Home again. Sitting with budgets and schedules. Determined to find a way to fund my writing so that the writing can fund me. No idea where to start looking, less idea of whether it will be productive, but failure is not an option and this dissertation needs to be published sooner rather than later. Patreon is doing well. Growing it is probably my best option right now, as discussions about other projects/contracts aren’t moving very quickly. So many things to think and do and solve.

May 19, 2019 hooding0519
May 10, 2019

For the first time in 2019, the thermostat in my car said that it was 100 degrees F outside, for a minute this afternoon. It’s only May. This adds to the unease I already had after watching a winter that only felt like it happened in late March and early April, and then only for a handful of days.

Not very long ago, I sat with Chief Arvol Looking Horse in Minneapolis as he spoke with us about the teachings about the time when the earth becomes ill and the water threatens to leave us if we don’t help.

https://www.theguardian.com/environment/climate-consensus-97-per-cent/2018/feb/22/standing-rock-is-everywhere-one-year-later

I do not have his wisdom or his eloquence. Read his words for yourselves, and find those things you can do toward caring for this home we have and all the people, human and not human, who share it with us. For the earth, for the water, and for all the Peoples who live on the earth and in the water, we all must do what we can. The heat is only going up.

May 7, 2019

Today the doctor checked in with me on the blood tests I did last week. I am still getting used to the idea that tests aren’t necessarily dire, after more than a decade of tests explicitly around cancer (which I am mercifully now free of, after multiple attempted invasions). These were standard let’s-do-a-blood-panel type and generally nothing was surprising.

She doesn’t like my blood pressure. (Neither do I.) Says I need to stress less and is hopeful that now that dissertation is done I can come back in three months and test again. However privately amused I am at the idea that my stress will magically disappear in three months, I am listening, and taking her lecture to heart. No, I won’t be able to stop the stress entirely. Yes, I need to keep working on doing it anyway. Not going to get anything done at all if I am too sick or too dead to do it.

May 4, 2019 april20garden
May 4, 2019

The dogwood tree outside my new (well, since November now) bedroom window is finally in bloom. It was slower than the others in the neighborhood due to the landscapers lopping off some of its boughs very late in the winter, and I was concerned that it might not recover from the shock this year, but it is slowly beginning to catch up with the crepe myrtle across the street which looks like someone dumped a truck full of cotton candy from the church roof. The cherry trees are nearing the end of their flowering. I find more petals on the top of my car now than I do on their boughs.

Other neighbors are putting out lawn furniture, washing their boats and camping equipment, mowing lawns. The view from my (sort-of) new kitchen table shows me spring unfolding in the center of Portland, a bit of pink and white and pale yellow against the deep evergreen hills off in the western distance.

If I walk out my front door I can see my garden planter beginning to bloom with various flowers I put there to replace the overgrown bramble it had been on my arrival. There is a pink and white dahlia, anemones in multiple colors, and petunias speckled white against a deep blue that lives up to their name of night skies.” Sweet alyssum and basil from seed will fill in the darker parts of the box once they are bigger than the tiny green sproutlings they are now. A tulip popped up from beneath the brambles; it will not flower now, but perhaps now that it is free, it will return next spring. The part of my front yard the landscaper filled with ugly rocks revealed a number of crocuses despite the rock. They aren’t blooming anymore, but their leaves continue to shoot upward around the base of the dogwood, deep green defiance to the suffocating pavement.

There are metaphors in this spring to my life, I suspect. I don’t have enough coffee in me yet this morning to solve their depths, but for the moment, I enjoy the sun and the flowers and the Portland watching from my perch.