Sunday, May 27

On Lots of Ideas; and Nothing to Say

Inspiration is a funny thing. I feel the need to write this morning; my brain is literally buzzing with thoughts. But nothing is lining up to march down my fingertips at the moment.

It's raining as I write this and the sky is low and gray. Which probably has something to do with the mood. Things like that swing me. Markedly.

I just discovered a new blog and have been reading it voraciously. The author shares my name, Jennifer, and is also currently an American expat. That's about where our similarities end, other than the basic we both have a nose and two arms kind of sameness. Or maybe not. I look forward to knowing her better and finding out what else we share. She lauds the fact that she is a stream of consciousness writer, and having been swept into the magnetic pull of her words, I am fully in support of the style.

Maybe that's why nothing is lining up this morning. It all wants to come at once.

I have been in close e-contact this week with another Jenn (just what is it in my life with all these Jennifers?) who sent an incredibly touching note after reading my post about Grandpa's passing. She and I share that experience now; the heart wrenching experience of losing a loved one when you are far away from home. In her email she told me,

"One of my friends described grief of someone important to you as a perennial emotion. That it comes in intense waves, even long afterwards. I thought it was a good way of putting it."

I think it's a perfect description.

Sometimes those waves seem capable of pulling you under.

Generally in my life, I respond to events and happenings with emotion. I wear them all on my sleeve, so to speak. When something is pleasing to me, or I like what I see, I get goose bumps on my skin; and tears in my eyes.

When I am angry, I cry.

When I am happy, I cry.

When I am sad, I cut my hair.

I stepped into the bathroom yesterday to put some finishing touches on getting ready for the day (at noon, after my shower, which was at eleven.) and in studying my reflection knew I was overdue for a trim. It's been on my mind lately, this need for a haircut. In fact, I dreamed that I was pulling great handfuls of hair from my head just the other night. But as I stared into the mirror, I figured I would just give it a whirl myself. Who needs the salon with its trained technicians when what you really need is a cathartic experience in the privacy of your own home?

I started at the front with my bangs and then moved to the longer bits at the outer edges of my head. Soon great sweeping strokes were being made with the scissors and hair of varying lengths was tumbling into the sink and onto the floor.

The sound of the scissors cleanly swiping at my locks was fabulous. It was electric and charged and I was having a blast of the most personal kind.

After the cut, I colored it with a box of "warm blond" hair dye I found at the back of the bathroom supplies shelf. And strangely enough, after changing the length and altering the color I looked in the mirror and felt more "me" than I have felt in awhile.

It was fun. Really.

And now I am a red head.

And I survived that wave.

Today, my husband is on his way to the States to reunite with his family and support his Mom and pay honor to his grandfather. It was a virtual impossibility for all of us to go. A flight across the ocean is no small matter, and traveling with a pre-schooler, makes it an even bigger deal. So we send the dad of this clan with our prayers and hopes. And our well wishes for everyone in the family as they celebrate the life of our dear Grandpa.

I have my concerns about the week I am facing of single parenting. Usually in our lives, the children have reserved the moment of head injury, or stair tumbling, or emotional meltdown, to coincide with there only being one parent around to manage the crisis. I really hope we break with that pattern this week. Also, I love the company of the man I married, and find that when he travels I just don't sleep as well. In spite of the fact that no one is hogging the blanket.

Tomorrow I get the chance to meet a blogging friend in real life. In person. For the first time. Marloes is driving across the country to rescue me from reading boredom, and has promised she will arrive with boxes of books. I am really looking forward to the moment; to sharing a cup of coffee with her; and to chatting in person with a supportive new friend.

That should carry me through the next wave.

This is pure honesty here isn't it? And after all of this putting it out there, my brain buzz is quieter .

That feels good.


  1. OH I do hope your time with your husband away is ok. I understand a wee bit of how you feel - obviously tho I've never been an ocean away from mine, so the magnitude of it must be overwhelmeing to you. And on top of that the grief that you must be experienceing. I really am sorry.

    I'm excited to hear of your fun visit you'll have with your friend. That should be loads of fun -- and books!! I love new books.

    You must write all about the visit.

    You go girl ! - on your hair cut and color! I would so do that - (and have done it). It is liberating.

    I do not know yet the rest of my grades.. thanks for HOLDING FISTS :)

    Take care!!!

  2. I thought I was the only one who cut my own hair when I get in a mood... :)

    Hope the books tide you over until your husband is back.

  3. Jenn-
    Thank you for your comments on my blog recently. I have been wanting to check in with you. I am so sorry about your loss and am sending energy and love to you. Even though you are far, I know it will reach you. Your blog has become one of my favorites and I wish you all the best in your week of single parenting. I can't sleep when my husband is away either.
    Keep writing because I love reading your thoughts!

  4. Ooooo, how could the kids mess with you now that you're a red head?

    And I'm glad "the other Jenn" is out there for you. She's been there for me for many, many months.

  5. Many bloggers, including WW participants, will be flying Peace Globes in the blogosphere on Wednesday, June 6, 2007. It is BlogBlast for Peace day - the second annual event. Please consider using your Wordless Wednesday platforms on this day to participate. You can find more information about the movement at Mimi Writes or BlogBlast for Peace or

    Thanks and peace!

  6. P.S. We don't have a peace globe representing the Netherlands. Just sayin....

  7. Hi Jenn,
    I love it when people call me Jenn, so consider yourself very lucky to have such a cool name.. Thanks so much for finding my blog and actually reading it. I look forward to keeping up with yours.
    As far as the first gray hair experience, I found my first gray hair, which was actually nestled in a batch of SEVERAL gray hairs, on a flight to the US about five years ago. You know how the bathroom on the plane has the groos unforgiving neon green light, which magnifies every pore and bloodshot vein... I pushed my hair back and there they were, an army of grays hiding out in the blonds. I ran back to my seat and told my husband, who chuckled and went back to sleep.
    I spent the rest of the flight contemplating my own mortality.

  8. Oh God-
    I pushed the wrong button and didn't proofread. So much for first impressions...

  9. Shelby, Author Mom, Tori-
    Thanks so much for the comment. I worried after putting this out there that I had TOLD TOO MUCH. I can see now I have a group who hears me and understands. I really appreciate that!

    Hahahaha! I think YOU are a redhead, no?
    And, yes, I have YOU to thank for ever finding "the other Jenn" in the first place. Wow. This blogosphere is a neat place!

    Thanks for the reminder. I have had this on my TO DO list for several weeks and didn't get it done yet. I will make it a priority. I would SO like to represent The Netherlands on this day!

    (or may I say Jenn?)
    Welcome! I am so glad that after my intense stalking of your blog you came round here anyway to share some thoughts. Sorry about the gray hair brigade. That sucks. You can bet I would have been HUGELY sympathetic to the discovery. :)
    I love your blog. I love your writing. Thanks so much for stopping in to say something!

  10. It was short, but every minute was pure pleasure. Thanks for your hospitality Jenn!

  11. Ah, Marloes-
    It was so good, I had to dedicate an entire post to it!
    Sure is nice to know you. Thanks for coming and thanks again for the books.

  12. Congrats on getting through that "wave." That's such a perfect way of putting that. And good luck getting through the week as a single parent!

    And I LOVE that you cut your hair and dyed it. It's EXACTLY what my instincts would have done too. I bet it looks fabulous.

  13. Brillig-
    I don't know if it looks good, but it sure feels good. I dare say, it's a little bit sassy!

  14. I'm glad that any small thing I could do (send an email) could help in any sort of way. Especially at times when it seems like absolutely nothing will make it better.

    Missed you while I was away!

  15. jenn-
    Your "small thing" was so large to me, it affected everything.
    There aren't words to say thanks enough that you have been there for me across the miles and in spite of our newness in each others lives.
    I missed you while you traveled! So glad you are back.