When You Feel Your Life’s Too Hard…

So, I’m set for the rest of the month. My landlord was polite and kind and offered to come for a visit and maybe a glass of wine soon….but with the stern reminder, “Don’t be late next month.” And the best you can do is bow your head, take the lashing you deserve and say, “It won’t happen again.” I felt like a fool, an idiot, a disappointment. I felt embarrassed. But, that propels you, doesn’t it? Fight harder, work harder, knit more. Focus more….But how?

Kara has been helping me figure out how to do the big turn around. Different things to do with these bears, or this talent. And great emails and suggestions have been pouring in about other options that might present themselves. Live appearances, teaching classes, make myself more accessible. All valid. All wonderfully right, and on target. So, I’m pursuing concepts and ideas that had eluded me, but thanks to you and your suggestions, I have something more of a clean path. No thickets, just a path to follow.

But, the best part of this has been the last day or two. Life tosses brilliance disguised in sadness often, if you’re not paying attention. Do you remember my discussing Medina’s, the Cuban grocer just here at the corner from where I live? For my simple $4.50 I could get this massively huge and delicious Cuban sandwich that was at LEAST two meals made of home roasted pork and fresh baked bread. I was walking by on Wednesday and saw signs in the window: “Retirement Sale. 30% off everything.”

I dashed in and asked the lovely woman who owns it, “Are you leaving?”

In this beautifully thick, and wonderfully hard to understand accent she said, “Yes! You know, I’m tired. I’m getting old. I’m 77 and we’ve been here 43 years. I’ll miss you customers. This I will miss the most. Seeing the people everyday who come here with their mother and father, and now they are mothers and fathers and bring their babies with them. This is the hard part of leaving.”

“Well, when are you closing down?”

“When everything has been sold. Maybe a week? Maybe two?”

Nope. Didn’t take that long. Today, two days later, big sign on the front door: “Last day!” And sure enough, not much was left. I, however was able to snag cans and cans and bags and bags of beans for pennies on the dollar. I have a fully stocked pantry of beans and rice. All for a simple $4.12.

….and so goes quietly a grand tradition, a landmark, a well known and loved establishment that sat timidly in the corner of history….sadness? Yes, but brilliance blooming forth. It was at HER decision. She’s simply tired. I’m sad to see her go, but its simply for selfish reasons, you know. After 43 years, she’s entitled to say, “I’m a little tired and ready to rest.” God Bless her.

And on another note. Rufus the Beagle, if you’ve been paying attention to that story, was sent home to his family yesterday. He’s back home. The powers that be, officially said “the wound on the child wasn’t serious enough to warrant the term ‘serious.'” But, like I said in a previous post, once this got into the hands of elected officials, I felt Rufus would be safe. No one running for office wants to be pegged as the puppy killer.

I cried my eyes out when I heard. It was a sad situation that didn’t need to escalate to such an extreme degree, but the brilliance? Many of us in this city, and elsewhere, are now much more knowledgeable of these insane rules and laws that seem to appear just when you least expect them. Another brilliance? We’re learning more and more about other dogs who are also in the same situation all over the country. Dog lays down by boy to cuddle, bruises boy, animal control comes along and snags dog to put down for being a danger to human survival.

So, to anyone who helped sign the petition, thank you. We, little us, we, saved a life. And to be frank? Never forget, it doesn’t take very much to save a life. It only takes YOU, and your concern. And if Rufus isn’t testament to that, then I am. YOU all saved me.

And finally? While knitting up some orders, I’ve been avoiding the internet. Sometimes the news is good, sometimes not. But, its a distraction sometimes, so I just felt it best to sit alone with the needles, and bring these bears to life. For that’s what I do. I bring teddy bears to life.

Now, my taste in music runs all over the place. Anything from Siouxsie and the Banshees, to Diamanda Galas, to Johnny Cash, to Lisa Gerrard, to Portishead. I’m all over the place. I’ve been listening to the radio while I work, sometimes talk, sometimes music, and sometimes one of the best stations to hear just as background madness is WMMO. A touch of old 70’s Elton John, Fleetwood Mac, you know the sort. Well, as I was knitting today, I heard one of my favorites, that gave pause for thought. A moment where I was reminded of how these troubles of mine should readily be corrected, how they are OFTEN fixed, of how it only takes one simple, frail, intimate moment of quiet to talk with God to get the answers, and to eliminate doubt and pondering. So, I thought I’d share it with you.

How do you solve your problems? You have a talk with God….of course.




  1. This is the best piece you’ve written in a long time — it’s wonderful. As “ZD” said, like you were just sitting and talking with us. So happy for the answers to prayer and the good things ahead. Love you always … Mama Judy

  2. GREAT POST!!! How true out of sadness or bad things sometimes good things come…..if we look to see it! LOVE the Stevie Wonder Song…..that is what I do DAILY All day long! Talk to God…..kind of like Tevye in Fiddler on the Roof! It always makes me feel better!

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