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I should be boarding a plane with Stella, going to get her (and my) groove back, but instead I feel like I am wedged between Thelma and Louise, driving to God only knows where, out of control in a 66 Thunderbird.

I'm headed to Portland today and I've only been driving for about 60 miles. Yet in that short period of time, my mind has traveled round trip through the last 6 years of my life, back and forth, right and left turns, one-way streets, u-turns and dead ends. With over 9 hours of driving left to do, and my back already a little achy, I knew my body could handle it, but what about this mind of mine? Could I actually let it accompany me in the passenger seat? It was already driving me crazy. 10 hours is a long drive when you are dragging along a nagging passenger that you really don't click with, and right now me and my mental state are at odds.

A couple of months ago when I was driving up I-5 heading to Portland, my mind started thinking about my latest and most heart crushing of relationships. I thought about how it had been such a game, a mind game, and one that until now, I didn't realize I was guilty of playing also. I saw an image of myself as bowling pins, my partner of course, the ball. It seemed as if I just kept resetting, letting him have another chance to knock down more pins, eventually get a strike, a perfect game. But I had to accept some responsibility, didn't I? I was the one who kept providing the pins, giving him the opportunity. Just minutes after those thoughts had entered my mind, and I am not embellishing here, I passed a roadside grave marker, it was the typical white cross, but at the base of it someone had set up a small grouping of bowling pins, a ball, flowers and a teddy bear. It blew me away. What a sign if I have ever received a sign. I knew it meant one of two things. Either the relationship would kill me, or the second thought, the relationship itself had to die. I of course preferred the second option.

So as I was driving today, somewhere about two or three hours south of Portland, I was talking on the cell phone to my daughter when I could see the bowling pin grave marker up ahead. I swerved off the interstate to take a photo. Olivia was on the other end of the phone saying "get out of there Mom, that's creepy" - and she was right, it was kind of creepy.

Along with many of my great thoughts, insights and signs that I receive, at first they are revelations, things to be reckoned with, I become empowered with an inner strength and determination that could rival that of a great Olympian athlete. But my weak and shattered heart sometimes just can't make the finish line. It gives up, gives in, disappoints the team, but works like hell just to keep beating. I need to give it a rest. Today, I need to give myself a rest. Let my mind (aka Thelma) go to sleep in the back seat, put my heart (aka Louise) on snooze and I'll wake them both when I reach my destination.

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