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Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Tinker Toy Traumas

My time here in Massachusetts is coming to a close. This Saturday I’ll jet south to where palms sway, the sun restores, and little dogs dance around my ankles. I’m a bit in denial — trying to slow down time, for although I can’t wait to get home, this Worcester girl is a bit reluctant to leave.

Don’t get me wrong, it’s been a roller coaster visit click clicking me to the apex of heightened suspension — pausing just long enough for a quick-eyed glance around, and then hurling me into a tummy-tossing drop — but still, I’m back in line for more. There’s something about the thrill of the plunge, the blurred faces zipping by that connects me to where I’ve been and where I want to go.

I’ll board my plane, but I will never really leave this place of grainy footage and R-less accents, and as the HD version flickers against my contemporary soul — adult Leah, has discovered that everything remains somewhat the same, although modified by time and the generous distance that I’ve allowed myself. I know that leaving was necessary for it offered me a panoramic view, and now I’m able to see that Worcester is not only benign, but an endearing part of who I have become — my tribal home.

I’ve come to understand that Paris or grotto, Mordor or Shangri-La, it makes no difference where we come from, for the most frightening places are within our own minds, where tinker toy traumas torment our lives and spawn crippling fears; stunting our ability to reach beyond ourselves.

Worcester, I publicly apologize for placing the blame of the culpable on your pretty little head. And even though this visit has been squally and raw, I know that neither sun nor rain comes in judgment, but rather by natural course — and that all things, both dreary and bright, were, and are, just as they should be.








25 comments:

Karen Wojcik Berner said...

Love the shot of the heart in the wrought iron. It's perfect.

Guess our homes will always be ingrained in us, no matter what our childhoods are like, and we are the sum of our experienced parts.

The Loerzels said...

Love this line.....it's so true! "I’ve come to understand that Paris or grotto, Mordor or Shangri-La, it makes no difference where we come from, for the most frightening places are within our own minds, where tinker toy traumas torment our lives and spawn crippling fears; stunting our ability to reach beyond ourselves."

Leah Griffith said...

Karen, I have been having so much fun snapping photos. The foliage is glorious.
Yes, our homes are engrained in us and it took me years to get over my aversion to my hometown. I'm so glad that I did.

Leah Griffith said...

Marie, it is true, and for years I saw my hometown as a guilty party — in on my traumas. Now I see that Worcester is neutral, as much a victim as I was, and I'm able to embrace this place instead of viewing it as a crime scene.

Martha J. M. Orlando said...

You are so right, Leah - "the most frightening places are within our own minds . . ." I'm glad you've been able to come to terms with your hometown and your past, my friend. It's nice to be able to "go home" and have it be a pleasant, not fearful, place.
Love and blessings!

Corinne @ Everyday Gyaan said...

We are so prone to assigning blame for 'bad' experiences on a place. I'm glad you've made your peace with your hometown, Leah. ♥

Julia said...

Wrapping you in love, Leah. Your words sing to me and fill my deepest inside places. You feel like home to me, dear friend--I'm beyond grateful.

So happy you made your peace with your growing up place--how I understand the significance of this.

Love.

Dangerous Linda said...

sweet, leah. i love new england and have more of a tendency to put it up on a pedestal -- which is equally unfair. it took me a very long time to embrace the beauty of the american midwestern prairie. i wish i was in MA with you right now, walking and talking in the autumn woods...XOXOXO

Debra said...

Thomas Wolfe said 'you can’t go home again’ but obviously you can. You did, and made peace with the past.

“I know that neither sun nor rain comes in judgment, but rather by a natural course — and that all things, both dreary and bright, were, and are, just as they should be.”

If we all adopted this philosophy, how much more sane we’d all be.

The girl in the pic looks like Cozy, my special new friend.

melissa said...

Hmmm...I'm reflecting a lot on this. I realized that I have ran away for so long from our place... my country... and God brought me back at the exact same place to heal.

I truly love your words :* Lots of love... I'm journeying with you...

JIM said...

A great post simplifying the thoughts many of us have. I do need to admit that the only thing I miss about MA. is the Fall season. We welcome all back to sunny Florida, come and enjoy the sun and the smiles of all of us !!!

http://jpweddingphotograpy.blogspot.com/2012/10/two-surprise-photo-opportunities-clown.html

Leah Griffith said...

Martha, for many years I felt homeless. Now, I realize that I carry my home with me. I am always at home. But...going back to Worcester for an entire month gave me the time to come to peace with the place of my upbringing. I love Worcester. It will always hold a precious place in my heart. Thank you for being a witness to this sweet Martha.

Leah Griffith said...

Thank you so much Corinne. I feel free in a unique sort of way. Free to return, free to go away. I donated a copy of Cosette's Tribe to the Worcester Public Library, and I felt so empowered by doing this. It was as though I was placing a record of historic events on file to be read by Worcester's populace for years to come.
Hugs to you sweet Corinne.

Leah Griffith said...

Julia, I feel your hug across all these miles. My home is in my heart, and you dear Julia are seated there with me. I love you so much my brave sweet poetic artist. Thank you for being here with me in this life, my sisterly soul mate. <3

Leah Griffith said...

Linda, I would LOVE to have you walking right beside me. The trees are ripe with color, emitting a woodsy fragrance, which stirs so many memories. I was kicking through the leaves in the park with my nephew Jim...crunch swish, crunch swish, and I realized that I hadn't done that in over 20 years. I could lose myself in the beauty here. No. I've lost myself in the beauty and fallen deeply in love.
You and I parallel each other in so many wonderful ways Linda. I pay special attention to all of your artly expressions <3

Leah Griffith said...

Dear Debra,
Yes I did. I went home and made my peace, embracing all of it in acceptance of who I am. I'm amazed that you recognized your friend. But then again...of course you did <3

Leah Griffith said...

Sweet Melissa, I feel your presence here with me on this journey. We both returned to find peace and healing. It makes me want to cry with joy...I feel so full and grateful. I'm sending you love little sister as we journey onward.
Big hugs!!!

Leah Griffith said...

Jim, the color has got me hypnotized. I absolutely love it! I am ready though, to return to the land of gentle waters and swaying palms. Florida, here I come!

Rachel Hoyt said...

What a healing post! (I hope.) You speak with real wisdom here. Such beautiful writing. :)

Leah Griffith said...

Yes Rachel, it is healing. I tend to write what I'm experiencing. I'm glad that my experiences and words reached the fertile soil of your soul. Thank you so much for being here.

JANU said...

I’ve come to understand that Paris or grotto, Mordor or Shangri-La, it makes no difference where we come from, for the most frightening places are within our own minds, where tinker toy traumas torment our lives and spawn crippling fears; stunting our ability to reach beyond ourselves. - loved the way you have put it. A treat to read you lady!

Chris said...

I was sad when I did not make it to PA this summer. I got caught up in my new love and failed to perform a ritual, that of returning to the scene of my private little crimes, to the locus of the traumas that precipitated the biggest happiness I now know.

But there is also a mental space of tinker toy traumas that I take with me everywhere I go, related to certain events from twenty years ago. I thought I was over it, because it stopped stunting me a long time ago. Recently, a kind nudge from my angel reminded me that I was not, because I cannot seem to be able to talk about it without bursting into tears. I just stumbled across a quote by Mark Twain apparently, one of those things that people rip out of context and stick onto their FB page as a motto with no head or tail. It went along the lines of 'There are two important days in your life. The day you were born and the day you find out why.' I'm still waiting for my traumas to tell me why :)

I hope your home has welcomed you back. Hugs,
Chris

Leah Griffith said...

Thank you Janu. Life serves up such a stunning array of lessons and emotions. I just can't help but to spill it all out here. <3

Leah Griffith said...

One should never apologize for happiness Chris. Of course you didn't go back. Not now. Yours was a season of love to be savored.

There is time enough for traumas to speak, leading us toward the light in spite of ourselves. For no one wants to actually allow trauma the freedom of speech, such voices are exaggerated and scary. Yet it is an incredibly efficient teacher.

Home is always here, and with me. I'm glad to be back in Florida. I plotting a beach day. Wish you could come with;)

Jayne said...

"...all things, both dreary and bright, were, and are, just as they should be." You're a true poet, Leah. I'm smiling thinking of your bright smile. You got it girl. ;)

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