The Spiral Notebook

writer and editor Lacy Boggs

January 26, 2014
by lacylu42
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Feed my Hunger and Relieve my Mind

I’ve been reading “A Course in Weight Loss” by Marianne Williams because after my triumphant achievement of reaching my goal weight with Weight Watchers last year, I’ve gained about 10 pounds back.

It’s a fascinating book, because it goes a lot deeper than the normal, “emotional eating” diagnosis; yes, I know I eat when I am sad or depressed or upset, but that knowledge hasn’t been enough to completely stop me from doing it.

The book, however, talks about binges as searching for love that I’m not getting somewhere else.  Divine love. Spiritual love.  Love that comes deep from within.

I felt it last night.

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September 19, 2013
by lacylu42
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Sitting outside on the back deck, getting a little vitamin D while the kiddo runs off some energy.

I’m sick—AGAIN. I blame daycare, but also not living as healthfully as I’d like lately.  I haven’t been taking very good care of my body or my family, and I think sick and tired is what I get for those “efforts.”

It’s a funny conundrum.  I always think that eating the junk food, going out to the restaurants, cooking what’s “easy” instead of what’s healthy will make me feel better, and in the long run, I’m always wrong.  Thirty-two years old.  You’d think I’d have figured this out by now.

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June 22, 2013
by lacylu42
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Let it Be

Woke up at 4:45 this morning and couldn’t get back to sleep. I’m checking out of the hotel here in Snowmass around 7 or 8 and driving back to Denver, then catching a plane to Dallas this afternoon. I need to be with my folks, at least for a day or two. Nothing new to report on my dad, really, except that this is one scary ass disease that moves at lightening speed. I am so, so grateful for amazing medical technology and outstanding doctors that are saving his life as I type this. Without them, he would have been dead before the new year; with them, he has a fighting chance.

I am grieving and reminding myself that I have no reason yet to grieve. I am scared, and trying to remember to look for the positive. I am breathing out my sadness and fear and trying to breathe in grace and peace so that I can be helpful to my family and not a big stupid snotty mess.

I don’t want this, and that means nothing. I have no control over this. None of us does. The facts of this moment do not change by act of will. The only thing I can control is my reaction to it—and even that is in serious doubt.

Let the tears fall where they may. I am not ashamed of them. They are cleansing and pure. They are love. They are grief. They are fear and anger. They are true and I cannot deny them.

But I can try to approach this trip, this time in our lives, this moment and each one that follows as a blessing. I can try to be open to each moment, let it flow through me. Let it be.

My daddy used to play that song on the piano and sing it. When I find myself in times of trouble, Mother Mary comes to me, speaking words of wisdom: Let it be.

June 14, 2013
by lacylu42
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Disappointment

Turns out, my biggest fear is being a disappointment.

I wrote an article a while back and forgot about a big part of the assignment—until the day it was due. It took me a couple of weeks to pull together the missing bits.  I got it all in eventually, but it was horribly, inexcusably late. It was a big pain in the rear for the editor, also a friend.

That was months ago. This week, I sent her an email to pitch her some ideas.  She wrote back to tell me how disappointed she’d been in my previous work.

Ouch.

I know I’d apologized before, but she needed to say it again. So I apologized again.  I realized that I’d probably burned that bridge without ever meaning to.  I owned the mistake.  But it still stung.  Owning it didn’t make it better—for me or for her.

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April 21, 2013
by lacylu42
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Self-Indulgent

{This blog is so self-indulgent. And I love it.}

I feel like I’m running in circles lately. The great hamster wheel of life.

Took the baby to the pet store the other day, and we watched some mice in their cage.  One was running and running on the wheel, and the other was clinging to it, going around and around, upside down, just hanging on for dear life.

Or maybe he was enjoying the ride.

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April 14, 2013
by lacylu42
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Redefining My Roles

I don’t think my husband understands the depth of failure I feel when my toddler won’t go to sleep.

When she cries, I am a failure.

It is my job to be her mother.  I have other, part-time jobs, but this one is full-time, twenty-four/seven/three-sixty-five/for the rest of my life.

So when I fail, it’s a big ass deal.

It’s my job to make sure she learns to read, and goes out for a team sport at least once in her life, and goes to the dance even if she doesn’t have a date, and graduates from high school, and finds a committed relationship, and has her own family, and finds a job that lights her up, and finds purpose in her life.

But none of that can happen if I can’t get her to go to sleep.

And if I can’t get her to go to sleep, how will I get her through the first betrayal of a friend? Her first break up? The death of a pet or a loved one? Algebra and physics? When she doesn’t get the lead in the play? Middle school?

How will I possibly be able to be the mother I’m supposed to be if I can’t comfort her and help her fall asleep? How will I make all those other things more bearable if I can’t convince her that the bad dreams won’t hurt her?

How can I possibly succeed if the one most fundamental part of my job description—soothing my crying child—eludes me?

If that isn’t failure, I don’t know what is.

January 24, 2013
by lacylu42
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Isn’t it funny how your life, and your outlook on it, can change day by day?

I need more days when I feel like I can conquer the world, and fewer that feel like the world is conquering me.

I need more chocolate, and less angst about chocolate.

I try to remember how incredibly, ridiculously, embarrassingly blessed I am in this life.

Is happiness an act of will?  Sometimes I think it is.  We make the choice, whether we realize it or not; whether we admit to it or not.

I can choose to wallow.  I can choose to feel sorry for myself.

Or, I can choose to do those things for a moment, then pick myself up and soldier on.

January 4, 2013
by lacylu42
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Happy New Year

I always have big plans for new beginnings.

I make resolutions.  I make lists. I make plans and schemes.  There’s nothing I love more than a good plan—before I have to implement it.

This year is a little different.

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jealousy

December 10, 2012
by lacylu42
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Jealousy

Jealousy is no more than feeling alone against smiling enemies.
Elizabeth Bowen

I am sitting behind this glowing screen tonight feeling jealous of the successes of friends.  They are more immediate, and therefore seem more real than any successes I have had lately, or indeed ever.

I am feeling alone amidst smiling friends.

I can wallow in this, or let it spur me onward.  I can believe that voice which tells me I am nothing, I am a failure, I will not live up and should not even try.  Or I can try to break through it.

When I was a young teen, probably 11 or 12 years old, I went on a weekend retreat with the youth group at our church.  Lots of youth groups converged on Sky Ranch for the weekend.  We stayed in cabins.  It was pretty much the closest I ever got to summer camp.

And it was an awful, awful experience for me.

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yes

December 4, 2012
by lacylu42
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Just Say No

What do I have to say no to in my life…

…in order to say yes to what I really want?

I feel like I’m at one of those tipping points again.

Things have been slow lately. Slogging.  Like trying to run through Jello.

My brain has been thick, foggy, fuggy.  My middle is jiggly and pudgy.

But every now and then.  Every new month.  Every new moon—I get this urge to start over, to start fresh, to try again, to get out there and oh my gosh do something amazing, be something monumental, change the world and organize my closets!

What do I need to say no to to make that yes feeling stay?

…depression…

…apathy…

…greed…

…gluttony…

…self-depreciation…

…phoney-ness…

…lard… (in brain and body form)

Just say no to all the thoughts that flash and receive, flash and receive: ANGRY loser not worth anything failure who would ever listen to can’t can’t can’t cannot and won’t because too hard not enough not good enough not perfect not enough not anything unworthy ungrateful and ugly.

Just say no to all those ugly words.

Who is that hateful person, anyway, and why do I let her in my life?  I need to dump her, cut her out and cut her off and say SEE YA.  You are poison.  Nobody talks to me like that.  Nobody is allowed to make me feel like that.

I want to meet the real me more often.  I want to say yes to her.  I want to take her hand in mine, look deep into her eyes and say, “Yes, honey.  This is real.  It is OK to be you.  A million times yes.”

image by ili Vieira de Carvalho