Thursday, August 1, 2013

SM Johnson ~Thursday Morning Coffee ~ My People

Good morning darlings, and welcome to Time Moving Consistently. (Slaps hand to forehead). Wait, that's Earth. Umm.... how about we have Thursday Morning Coffee today? Yeah, sounds good to me, too.

Have I mentioned here how much fun Type 2 Diabetes is? I only bring it up because recently it's come to my attention that my blood glucose is running high, which is annoying, and exhausting, and frustrating... and pretty much makes eating not very fun at all (because I am being a control freak trying to avoid medication, and IT'S NOT WORKING). And why is this relavent? Well, let me tell you... the one thing I have so far refused to give up since my diagnosis in 2009 has been real sugar in my coffee. Two teaspoons. It hardly seems like anything.

The trouble is that I carry a travel mug around with me and drink coffee all day every day. And I've
Possibly a free sample here
been feeling tired all day, every day.

So I finally gave in, and gave up the last vestige of any sort of "normal" consumption (of food and beverage) and started putting Truvia in my coffee (the sugar product is called Stevia).

It tastes all right. We shall see if there is energy improvement. Here's hoping. (Raises coffee cup in the same gesture as one might raise a shot glass).

And... that's enough of this boring, whining shit, right?

Right. Let's get to a real topic.

I want to tell you about my people, so you can take a minute to stop and appreciate yours.

I think.... my telling isn't going to be about linking or showing you pictures or anything like that - I don't want to invade anyone's privacy.  I'm just going to describe who they are and what they mean to me. It's going to be a moment to slow down the brain and relax and.... recognize the important people in my life.

My husband. I wouldn't be a writer without him. He knows me utterly, he accepts me with no filters, he loves me day in and day out, even when I'm a bad, neglectful wife. Even when I've spend the whole day reading or writing or internetting or watching TV and STILL don't feel like making dinner or putting laundry away. He's been my best friend and partner for 21 years. That's something, isn't it? He knew me back when I hardly knew myself - and, in fact, provided the sense of safety and acceptance that I needed to have in order to grow into myself. Amazing. Worth more than I am able to even describe with these words.

My child. Sprite. 10 years old next week. She's a firecracker and a bright penny, an extrovert, a performer. She loves to be the center of attention. She rarely ever stops talking, and so has taught me to appreciate and make the most of silence. She drags me out into a world that I, an introvert, often avoid. She freely and joyfully says, "I am awesome!" How amazing is that? I don't think I was able to say that about myself until I was thirty. At least. I can hardly wait to find out what kind of person she's going to become. I adore watching her grow. I am astonished by how smart she is - it's like she's hardwired to understand technology and push every device we have to its limit. I think she's hardwired to push the world to its limits, to tell you the truth, and there's a part of me that can't wait to watch.

My old friends:

From gradeschool, middle school, and college. Sometimes we only talk a few times a year, and yet when we get together or get gabbing on the phone, it's effortless to pick up where we left off. Everyone needs at least one of these - the person who knew you when... you had bad hair, or acne, or braces... when you had childish dreams and childish ways. They're always interested in me (or pretend to be), but at the same time, they're never too impressed with me. They keep me real.

Family. I have adoptive family and birth family. Sometimes it feels like way too much family, to be completely honest, but all the way around, it's nice to have them, and I do love them all. What's funny is that these aren't the people who keep me real. I think a lot of people wouldn't agree with that, but I didn't grow into Real Me until my thirties. Maybe it had something to do with being adopted, maybe it just had something to do with me. The amazing thing is that this "closed adoption" came full circle, and I've come to know  a great many stories about the beginning of me, from all sides.

Growing up, I only knew a third of my story.

image from faebook
Genetics or environment? I can tell you right now, it's both. I can also tell you the genetic piece seems huge (or at least easier to see). My birth mother is a writer. My birth father is inordinately cheerful. These are two of my most prominent traits. My adoptive mother taught me to love books. My adoptive father valued honor and integrity. How could I be who I am without each piece?

My siblings - all SEVEN of them, are amazing people. No, I can't keep track of their birthdays, but I genuinely like each and every one of them and wish I had time to know them better.

Co-workers. The people who do what I do when I'm not writing. We are silly and dramatic, we have each other's backs like you would not believe, we problem solve, we deescalate some scary situations. Some are work friends, whom I enjoy very much at work, and some have grown into real friends. These people I see more than my family. I know, in one sense that's a little fucked up, isn't it? But that's how our world spins, and for the most part I'm just glad that I work with a whole bunch of really awesome people.

My writer friends. Or my new friends. I'm not sure how to classify them. As writers, we have some inherent understanding of this drive to write, create, and communicate with the wider world in a way that is incomprehensible to most people. Sure, everyone wants to write a book, but when it comes down to actually writing three hundred pages, or six hundred pages - most "normal" people are daunted, and view us as a little bit (or a lot) strange.

My new friends (and when I say "new," I mean new within the past 20 years) tend to be writers, or if not writers,  readers. These are the people I discover through reading and writing fiction. People I've NOT met through some form of formal education. On some level we have more in common with each other than with anyone else, but since we have absolutely no history together, a huge part of our early interaction involves dumping lives in laps.

I can't tell you how much I adore this.

Some of them are my favorite writers. Can you imagine? You send a note to your favorite writer, and within a few months they've become so important to you that you can't imagine your life without them. Huh. How did that happen? They might teach you some about your craft, or you might analyze their work, hoping to stretch and grow, and try not to embarrass yourself by 'copying' their writing style. Right? Yeah, writers know what I'm talking about.

And this, then, comes to daily touchstone relationships. The ones that become emotionally intimate almost against my will - and yet not - because I love it so. Near constant contact - How's today? - charming with its adolescent, all-consuming sheer and equal need. And... frightening all the same - giving trust without history, or... despite history, past experiences of hurt and abandonment. Will you still like me if I tell you this? Will you still like me when you realize I'm actually kind of boring? Will you forgive me for saying the wrong thing, for not understanding something you truly believe I should understand? Will you still be here tomorrow?
Image from Brothersoft

These are the people in my life. They matter. They grow me, enrich me, aggravate me, empty me, and fill me. And I need them all, every one.

Who are the people in your life? Take some time today to think about them, send goodwill to them, hold them close in your heart for the precious beings they are.

Have a great weekend, darlings.



  1. Awesome post. Funny how the world works, isn't it? Some of my best friends are people I've only known a short time, some I've never met at all and some have been around - oh - forever, but we only touch base now and then.

  2. Thanks for commenting, Debbie! Life is funny. I adore my people and would be ever so lonely without my writer peeps, whether I've met them in person or not.