so. i live in an area that is being completely affected by the smoke blowing in from the arizona fires.
it has been crazy shit up in here for more than a week, with actual ash floating in the air, a hot red sun at sunset that is so covered by haze you can look at it directly without that after-affect of blinding light when you close your eyes or look elsewhere, and smoke that smells so strong you'd think you were ten feet from a campfire or that it was your neighbor's house on fire, not hundreds of thousands of acres some hundreds of miles away.
i have been selfishly fearful a few times but mostly i just keep being thankful that we're not any closer and my heart breaks for those that have been in harm's way or those that have lost everything.
the simple loss of nature is enough to hurt so bad that i have to go on with my own petty goings-on and pretend like it's all pretty and cupcakes.
life is good. no doubt. all the things i am thankful for, the ones i mentioned earlier and the ones i didn't, i'm still thankful for them. i am one super duper grateful girl. but the scale tips, you know, and sometimes it doesn't take much. sometimes it's sheer joy of being alive on one end of the scale and not exactly the complete opposite of that on the other end but something not great...like, fear. worry. general concern. theories. ideas. impetus for discussions that should be had but there are no people with which to discuss these things and there's very little time for idle chatter and silly ideas anyway. some people walk around either completely unaware or completely disinterested in pondering all there is to ponder, wondering all the things there are to wonder, asking and seeking and searching and finding their own answers. some people find no value in others' answers.
some people, myself often included in this category, are complete hypocrites. maybe on the way to becoming who we want to become, better versions of ourselves, we have to face our constant failures but on days like today, after i've yelled and swore and grown impatient and anxiety-ridden i feel like i'm not so much trying to meet my own standards because i can't even follow my own advice. be nice to the kids. be patient. use gentle language. i can say all i want that it's not in my nature. the truth is i don't even know what the fuck that means. i know that i don't have a tendency to be good-natured and patient but that i am a kind and gentle person that only feels kind and gentle inside. i very rarely give off that impression. perhaps it's more accurate to say that i may give off that impression, now, but the battle wounds and scars of being a tough girl for so long (even if it was a facade many saw right through) don't disappear and i have to remind myself that people actually smile back at me now.
we have this fancy new heating and cooling unit that filters fresh air throughout the house periodically when the heater or air conditioner aren't running. i don't know how to make the damn thing stop and my house smells of smoke. my lungs hurt and it's hot in my house. don't drink the water, don't you breathe the air - i can't get modest mouse's "bury me with it" out of my head.
technology and humans are so out of touch with so much. i don't say that i strive to be a better person because that invites only strife and struggle on the path to being a better version of myself. i don't yet know how to phrase it without welcoming challenge after challenge but i make the effort. i also believe that each generation has made the effort on some level. while we think "progress" is worth killing people and rainforests and wasting natural resources and that we are somehow crafting a better life for the "better" people, there are others that have more homespun ideas of progress, each generation vowing to do things differently than their parents did. i see where my mom made some changes. she wasn't the mother i would have chosen for myself, i always told myself growing up. now, of course i understand that i did choose her. i still don't have any real idea why but i can appreciate that she didn't beat us down, that she let us have a voice and opinions and certain freedoms and options that she was never given. i understand how what might have seemed like her nature was a combination of things and not her own personal fault. i made promises that i would do things differently with my children and even if i can't live up to those differences every day i see the shift everywhere, from the general populace becoming aware of attachment theory and groups of individuals making small changes to institute a simpler, family-focused lifestyle where children are genuinely valued and shown by example how to be great examples themselves. examples of kindness and compassion. strength and courage. honesty and integrity. so many people are still wrapped up in war and violence but in so many ways i see the shift towards peace, harmony, justice and acceptance. even tonight when i'm angry with myself and worrying about the whole entire state of the world because the air quality here is poor and i can never just focus on one thing without thinking the entire thing is going to shit, even tonight, i hold out hope.
if the last generation improved upon all of the strengths and weaknesses of the prior generations, and in my generation i see even greater improvement for all of mankind, than it might just be possible that what we're leaving for our children isn't just a huge messy burden, but a chance to shine and finally get it right!
i just may adopt song titles and lyrics as blog titles again so it only seems fitting to close with some blind melon (the title is from another blind melon song).