Thursday, June 11, 2015

Gimme Shelter

I have officially done it. Fallen into the Slough of Despond.

Slough of Despond.

"The Slough of Despond (/ˈsl əv dɨˈspɒnd/; "swamp of despair") is a deep bog in John Bunyan's allegory The Pilgrim's Progress, into which the protagonist Christian sinks under the weight of his sins and his sense of guilt for them."

I suppose I know that expression from Little Women as The Pilgrim's Progress was the Sainted Marmee's go-to book for all of life's problems and I probably read Little Women at least ten times as a child although I never once read The Pilgrim's Progress. I may have tried. One or another of the four sisters was apt to be in Sough of Despond at any given moment and usually Amy as she was the most drama-queen of them all.

Hank once told me that as a mother I am somewhat a cross of Marmee and Roseanne.

Yeah. That's about right.

Mr. Moon has gone off to see his sister, her sons, their wives and children in Panama City Beach where they are all vacationing together. He has taken Owen with him! Owen's first trip away without Mama or Daddy. And obviously, without Mer Mer.
Because Mer Mer is fucking crazy and can't fathom spending two days with that many people and is a selfish old woman who, when confronted with something that makes her feel uncomfortable, hides under the bed. So to say.

Here's another thing. I've been reading the reviews for all of the Stones' concerts and everyone is absolutely blown away by the performances they've been giving. Almost all of them have said that it looks to them as if the Stones can carry on indefinitely because the energy they generate has not flagged one bit. I think people go to get a hit of nostalgia and instead, get a massive smack of what rock and roll used to be and...for that moment, still is.
As I've said before, the Stones never did look or act or sound like anyone else and they never really fit into the mold of anything but were entirely themselves and here they are- still entirely themselves- and although no, rock and roll wasn't supposed to be something that sixty and seventy-year old men ever would or ever could play, well, fuck that.

The pictures are amazing.

Do you think that man would rather be anywhere else in the world? 

Here's twelve minutes of heaven for me.

And I could be in Orlando watching them tomorrow night. I could have gotten tickets. I could have gone.

Am I going to be there?

I am not going to be in Panama City with my husband and my grandson and the relatives. I am not going to be in Orlando with the Rolling Stones. I will be right here in Lloyd.

Where chickens and sidewalk building

are the most exciting things going on.

And none of this is anyone's doing but my own.

It's raining again. Pouring down and the sidewalk guys have gone off to shelter and it occurs to me that "Gimme Shelter" should be my theme song and I dwell (today at least) in the Sough of Despond where I do not even reach my arms out for rescue or redemption 

but merely sit and weep (call me Amy) at the place where I am stuck, telling myself that I have the entire world right here while in truth the entire world flings and slings itself around me and I am afraid to take one step out of this flower-bowered cage I call my home. 


  1. Big Brave Owen! Ok, so no Big Brave MerMer, but I think at this stage of your life, you just get to make your peace with it.

  2. If I were Marmee, I'd have something pious to say about getting out of the Slough. But I'm not, so sympathies! I always hate it when I feel like I'm missing out on something fun.

  3. I remember those feelings all too well. Like your feet are mired in quicksand and the only comfort is home. I get it because I was there too for so long. I wish I had a magic wand do I could make it better for you.
    i could sit here and wax poetic about what worked for me, blah blah blah, but that's a big fucking help, right?
    Just know that in spite of your crazy feelings, everyone loves you. If you want to curl up with your chickens, that is a-o-frigging-k. You do what you can to get by.

  4. I call mine my pity parties. It's not pity, though. Just a fact that I'm happily despondent (???) in my own little place. Don't beat yourself up over it, though. Put on a Stones album and have your own private concert.

  5. It is so funny that you write about Little Women because it was one of my favorites and my mom just gave me a book titled The Little Women Letters and it is such a charming read. I highly recommend it! Don't feel bad about retreating in. My son and husband are going for a trip for a whole week without me and I am so looking forward to the alone time. I think we women don't get enough of it and society makes us feel like it isn't normal to seek it.

    Although, I do wish a group of us from the little community you have weaved here online could come and shelter you from the hoards at the Rolling Stones. They were amazing and that video you posted was my favorite part of the entire concert!

  6. If I remember the slough of despond, the remedy is to crack open the Bible and do some contritions. In lieu of that, though, why not turn up the music and dance in the rain?

    I am sorry, though, that you are despondent. I hope it passes and know that it will.

  7. ah well. this too shall pass. I had to go into the city yesterday to take some measurements and I drove right by my friends Dick and Kathy's new condo in the sky building thinking I should call them since we haven't visited in about 6 months and see if they are home and stop in so I went to do my measurement and then left, driving right by again and kept going. On my way to return something to my son I approached the street and block where a good friend and fellow artist lives and I thought I should pull in and see if Gene is home since I'm right here as I kept going. I was telling my kids this (they both work at the same place) and my daughter looks at my sone and says...see, we come by it honestly. I tell people all the time that I am anti-social but no one ever believes me.

  8. Do it! Go, pay a scalper some obscene price for tickets tomorrow night and GO!
    They're not getting any younger.
    I'm seeing them next week.
    Do it!

  9. I wish you were coming to see the Stones, if you change your mind you can stay with me. Gail

  10. Don't be so hard on yourself...if some things just don't feel right for you and you listen to your self preservation instinct, who's to say that's wrong? You do the best you can and your best is good enough by anyone's standards. Your grandsons know they are loved unconditionally and you are always there for them. Owen and his grandfather will have this special time together and return home to share it all with you.

  11. There is nothing wrong in doing what feels ok for you - or rather, not doing what feels not ok for you, for whatever reasons. And no, this is not your fault and there is no blame to dish out when we cannot meet our expectations and/or those others may have of us.
    Stay with it, this is your experience, don't make yourself small. This is not a weakness or a fault, it takes strength. Take care of yourself.

  12. Pilgrim's Progress. Ugh.

    I think Sabine is correct -- you shouldn't feel bad for doing what feels right for you. Staying home is perfectly legitimate, and you DO enjoy it. Don't torture yourself with thoughts of what might be happening elsewhere or doubts about why you're not there. Enjoy where you ARE. (And I know from the subsequent post that Liz helped you to do that!)

  13. You get to choose to stay home dear one, and no need for guilt or recriminations about your choice. It's a fine choice for today. Tomorrow you may choose differently. It is all ok. Hugs.

  14. Oh the slough! In which I've spent so much time! Glad I'm reading this backwards. Kiss.


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