l.o.v.e.

Look at me:

Overweight.

Vulnerable.

Entering a new chapter of life.

Periods separate the letters. If only things were that clear.

Like so many of us, I don’t know what’s going to happen in the Fall. I suspect we’ll do some remote teaching/learning and clusters of students will be in the classroom. That we’ll have hand sanitizers and wear masks and I’ll have facial breakouts from the steamy, sweaty September classroom, but will no longer have to wear lipstick and I can continue to talk to myself out loud and no one will know. (Yes, I’m aware that’s a major run-on sentence and that such Sins of the Stylebook will drop my grade to a C and will lower my GPA.) But as a person over 60, cut me a break; I’m feeling extra vulnerable these days. Maybe I’ll have to sign a return-to-work “at your own risk” contract. Maybe by being in the petri dish of an 8th grade classroom for nine hours, I’ll get COVID-19. Maybe I’ll get very sick. Maybe I’ll die. Maybe I’ll unwittingly give it to a child in my class or diabetic ex-husband or baby Millie. Maybe the school district will offer an early retirement buyout to rid taxpayers of medical liabilities, like me. Maybe my daughter’s mother-in-law can’t travel from Hong Kong to help care for the baby and maybe my daughter will end up on welfare–if it even exists any more. Maybe I can’t afford to pay the mortgage and I’ll have to sell my beloved Angel Cove Cottage By the Sea. Maybe California will be cursed with summer fires that will turn our lungs into COVID-19 sponges.

Maybe the maybes are–God Forbid Me for Saying This–me having too much time on my hands!

The would-haves, should-haves, could-haves, what’s up? what’s next? what ifs? are me wasting my precious time the way I do when browsing Next Up “America’s Got Talent” and “American Idol” singers and never sharing them on Facebook because it’s too embarrassing.

That’s why I historically get away at the start of summer vacation, go camping, be in Nature, drink my share of lovely Boisset wines https://my.boissetcollection.com .

Away, I can clear my head, sort out my priorities, discard the household To-Do List.

But not this year.

Seriously, I have too much time on my hands.

If only I knew what was coming up.

I don’t.

Get over it.

I haven’t decided. I don’t know what’s next? And, from what I’ve heard, what I’ve read on those Quotes of the Day posts, if you aren’t certain, don’t make a decision.

“It’s not time to make a change,. Just relax, take it easy. You’re still young, that’s your fault.There’s so much you have to know.”

Father and Son” newer version

Cat Steven’s “Father and Son” lyrics resonate and evolve in me like the disc bulging garage that NEVER–EVER–gets organized. I listen to Stevens’ music every week. Maybe it’s because I’m boring or maybe the soundtrack of my generation is just that good. Yeh, his words and music meant something to me then, and more so now. Because I feel like I’m that kid with a mortarboard on my head Frisbeeing it up into the limitless sky. I feel like I’m hang gliding and my age-freckled, tough-as-bricks right hand is skimming the edge of heaven. I can teach high school and college with my eyes closed because I’ve been downhill skiing my entire life. I get it. I’ve lived the rising action.

Act III: I need to go to Hawaii and get on a longboard and swim with dolphins and L.O.V.E. like it’s the 1970s and I don’t know anything about the future or the mistakes I’ll make. I just need to be. And believe. And ditch the maybes and replace them with, “What the hell? Give it a shot!”

That breeze that’s rustling the jacaranda tree out front, that wind that’s making my forearm hairs tremble, is my life and I’m on the swing in my backyard contemplating leaping into the blurry, mossy future. What will it take? A shove? Grazing my heels in the sand? The stakes are daunting. There’s no turning back.

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