Sunday, March 4, 2012


(photo by Jessica Riozzi)

Lately I’ve been ruminating on the nature of luck. Why is it that some people seem to breeze through life when others have such pain? Why do children battle cancer, while ornery assholes that drink and smoke and make everyone miserable live to be 93? How does a talented, wonderful guy work so so hard and still have trouble paying his bills, while lazy bored bitches become Real Housewives? Why does someone fall in love, once and forever, while her best friend can’t find a soul who fits her? And I’m not even talking about the people who have to drink straight from the Genghis River, or children born to parents who burn them with cigarettes or worse. Don’t even get me started on that kind of stuff.

I’ve been wondering how much of a role luck plays in all this. When you’re sick, anyone who’s healthy seems incredibly lucky. When your heart is broken, those lovers strolling hand-in-hand seem sun-kissed lucksters. And when you’re broke, anyone with money seems blessed.

I’ve been feeling sorry for myself. My gorgeous, fabulous young niece, Mara, had a brain aneurysm, and the surgery was more complicated than we thought it would be. Money has been unbearably tight, and the stress has taken a toll on me and on Steve, and some days we forget to lean towards each other to feel comfort. Hurricaine Irene came through and stole the bridge to our house, and completely blotted out towns nearby. The government is a disappointing mess, deranged children are gunning down other children, Amy Winehouse succumbed to her demons and we will never hear that impish, booze-soaked voice again.

And yet… Mara gets better each day, although sometimes it is hard for her to see that, what with the swollen brain and all. Steve and I, despite our money troubles, have the most incredible life. We have traveled around the world. We have wonderful, loving friends. Wherever we go, we meet fabulous people. I have the best career, and this new book I’m working on is filling me with glee. The Woodstock Writers Festival is going to be a huge success this year.

Steve won 2 awards at the prestigious Norman Rockwell Museum this past summer, and wherever we go people tell him how much they love his furniture and sculpture. Not to mention how gaga they get about his cars. We have been fortunate to be able to work at our art without having to take other jobs. This summer he'll be teaching a course in creativity at the Omega Institute.

Even though it seemed like it might never happen, a new bridge now connects our house to the world. I went head-to-head with some of my neighbors, and stood side-by-side with others. What a long strange trip that was.

Through it all, I continued to kill at the poker table!

When I look around I see rich people who can’t find love; loving couples who can’t conceive the children they so desperately desire; young mothers battling crippling cancers. Nothing is ever what it seems, it seems.

So instead of complaining, instead of worrying and concentrating on what isn’t, I’m going to hold on to my good-luck charms and feel the real luck that has always been my constant companion. Even if I have sometimes lost sight of it.


Anonymous said...

My blessings far outweigh my sorrows, and so it seems, do yours. I love u so!!!! xoxoxo

Anonymous said...

We all have days where we feel like we're hurtling down Niagara Falls and just when we are about to go over the edge, we wake up and realize it's another day. Luck has a lot to do with that, but you've always been blessed with a loving family and a wonderful mate and that has to be enough.

Anonymous said...

Keep blogging, Martha.

Isn't it the warm-up that flexes every writing muscle we didn't know we had?

Isn't putting our words out there that keeps us connected with the very "things" that keep us in some sort of balance?
And, we've survived February. When March comes, I think of Chaucer's mention:

"Whan that Aprille with his shoures sote
The droghte of Marche hath perced to the rote,
And bathed every veyne in swich licour,
Of which vertu engendred is the flour."