About Kim Vining

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Rubix cube of emotions

I’m a loner, yet I am outgoing.

I’m a quiet thinker, yet I’m bold and persuasive.

I’m loud, and yet I’m thoughtful.

I’m tired, and yet I’m energized.

I’m a quandary of so many opposite things.

So when I’m feeling too many at once – stress, tired, anxious, excited, frustrated, whatever else – I don’t know whether to cry, laugh, or scream.

If I hold my emotions in, they eat at me.

I forget little things, but how I felt in a moment stays with me forever.

It eats at me like a parasite.

It drains me if it’s something I should have, could have said.

It drives me if I still could.

I’m independent to a fault.  No one thinks I need to be romanced, held, or coddled.

But every woman needs a little of that.

My strength is a virtue, until it’s not.

I’m an open book in many ways, too willing to share my story.

But when I need to tell something hard to someone I care about, then I freeze.

I’m not one to think highly of my beauty, I often question it at all.

But I rarely question my intelligence, it’s gotten me this far.

I’m the kind of person who would love to be a hermit, until I didn’t anymore.

I think it would just happen like an eclipse of the sun.

It might be years in the making or a rare one time occurrence.

I’m quite the complex body, and quite capable of coming undone.

But no one sees that side of me, most especially those I hold dear.

I find I need even more strength and courage for them.

So when do I get to be vulnerable? When do I get to shed a tear?

Maybe that’s why sometimes it just hits me – the weight of the world at once.

I find myself crying to a song not because it’s that sad or because it relates at that moment,

But because I needed to cry, to let it out, to be free.

When you are so many sides of a rubix cube, perhaps one never solved,

how do you ever find the side that the world should see, always?

I’m multifaceted.  I’m complex.

I’m exhausting and hard to digest.

I’m difficult and a wad of stress most days.

I don’t relax well, I don’t breath or smell the roses.

Not because I don’t want to – I even try, but because I don’t know how.

It might sound foolish or not possible at all,

but I tried yoga, meditation, I’ve tried many things.

Relaxed me is still not very relaxed at all.

And as I age, approaching the big 4-0, it becomes more imminent

that I find a way to unwind.

Life and all the bad things that can happen are looming as much as all the good.

but what if I am not capable of slowing down?

I am meticulous, I’m diligent, I’m calculated.

Am I capable of taking a breath, letting things go, waiting a while?

if only I knew…..





Just thinking…..

He can be the most amazing creature –

seeing a part of me I don’t let everyone know.

He can be so loving, when he wraps his arms around me at night.

I lie there almost trying to stay awake, to enjoy the depth of it all.

Sometimes we bicker and fight, but that’s to be expected

and it often reminds me of the human nature of our relationship.

I try to put him first, it’s something I always do with that special someone.

And it’s hard when those moments arise where he cannot do the same

or where one of us gets angry or upset.

Oddly, I’m a poor communicator in relationships.

I communicate for a living and I blog and I write,

But when it comes to life and emotions I seal it all up tight.

I want to tell him when I’m happy and sad and angry.

I want to be open and honest and unafraid to do so.

But men don’t like to communicate, they don’t want to hear

or maybe they don’t think they need to.

I found myself writing him a letter the other day to explain something important,

something I desperately needed to say but couldn’t say with words in person.

I guess it’s better that I was able to say it at all,

But I’m a bold outgoing personality.

How is it that to the person that matters most, I can’t find the words sometimes?

Is it fear? Is it past experience biting me? Is it me or is it him? Or is it us?

How do I find the words, in the moment?

Sometimes he gets mad at something and I back down, not because I want to.

I pick my battles as they say, so I decide it’s not worth it.

Or am I being weak?

I think sometimes I don’t know what I want to say, or need to say, or even feel

Until I write them.

I’m a writer at heart.


It’s Like a Song

It’s like a song, it wains and waxes.

The melody starts subtle and pounds in full blast.

The words and harmonies on their own are meaningless.

For it is with the melody they take shape.

I hear the song in my sleep sometimes,

like an anthem for my life.

It carries me through the good, bad, and ugly.

I hum along in the car or shower or random passing moments.

The song escaping me from the grasp of a difficult moment or a painful day.

I hold tight to the tune; it’s my safe place.

For my head is a complex vessel,

And only I can ever fully understand.

The song is my way to speak the words,

For which alone have no power, no presence.


Worry Worry

I should be so happy right now, but I worry over the little things.  I blame my mother because she always worried so.  Truth is, sure I learned it from her, but I never unlearned it.  I never stopped worrying even when I wanted to or knew I should.  There’s plenty of things in this life to worry over – health, love, death, those are the things worth worrying about.  Logically I know this.  It doesn’t stop me from worrying over traffic, time, work things; the little things that I so desperately need to learn to let go of.  It’s not even about control, it’s more that when I don’t worry I get burned.  But the worry is burning me just as deeply, just slower and more painstakingly so.

I’m 37 years old and honestly wouldn’t be shocked if I had a heart attack.  That sounds awful.  I mean I don’t want one, who wants to have a heart attack.  I’m not wishing for one, but I am too stressed.  I need to relax.  I don’t just mean the kind of relaxing you do on vacation.  – That ends when I return home and the worrying starts.  “How much is waiting for me at work? Did that bill ever get mailed? Shouldn’t I have received that phone call by now? Wasn’t that medication due to be refilled? Why is insurance not allowing a refill? Why is this traffic light always red when I’m late? Why does the garbage guy show up just when I want to pull out of the driveway? etc etc etc”  I’m doing it now, tonight, at 9:24 PM.  I’m thinking about my workday and all the things that did or didn’t go right.  I’m thinking about to fix them or how it’ll all play out tomorrow.  I’m checking email.  I’m downloading applications, configuring things, and I’m doing this stuff to in my mind prevent some imminent disaster.  Except, it’s not.  The disaster is still probably going to happen.  Is it really a disaster? Probably not, but it’ll likely feel like one when it happens.

So maybe it’s not so much that I worry too much, but rather that I let things mean too much.  If the work issues weren’t so important to me, than I wouldn’t worry, right? But who doesn’t want to be successful and do a good job and make someone proud?

How can I stop the constant stress if I can’t pinpoint the big issue that most needs to be addressed to stop it? Is it the worrying? Is that I’m a control freak? Is it both? Is it something entirely different, like the fact that I simply don’t shut my mind off well?

I always wondered how others do it.  If I’m working on a project and it’s not going well, for whatever the reason, I want to try to fix it or at least provide some kind of mitigation strategy to protect against the issues arising.  If those issues and the source of them are entirely out of my control, and the disaster is happening regardless of anything I could or couldn’t do to prevent it, why is it so hard for me to step aside and watch the train crash (metaphorically of course)? The other day my boss said I needed to step outside the train and be watching the crash instead of trying to drive the train car.  To which I responded, “but if my children are on the train, how can I in all good faith simply leave them to crash?” She said, “because you have to stop looking at the work situation and your coworkers as your children.”  So how do you care less? I mean of course you still need to care on some level, but how when you always cared maybe a little too much, do you tone it back down?

I’ve gotten a little better as I aged.  I’m better at bad stress now – ya know the things you can’t expect or plan for, the things most everyone else would totally and justifiably stress out over.  Those things I handle well.  It’s the things that shouldn’t be so big, that seem big, which I don’t often knock down in perspective.  Logically I know they aren’t that big.  The world won’t end if something goes wrong at work.  The world will still spin if  I run late tomorrow.  My head is starting to spin now.

I’ve tried yoga.  I’ve been told to meditate.  These are all nice things, but they haven’t had the long-term guidance and impact I’m looking for.  In the moment, when the little things feel big, how do you squash them like the annoying painful stinging bug they are? That’s what I need to learn.  Suggestions welcome.


I had a dream today.
It took me back in time.
I remembered the very moment when
I messed up everything that could have been mine.

The only difference between myself
and that classic holiday tale
is that Ebenezer could be saved
and I have always failed.

In real life there is no going back.
I can’t undo my greatest mistake.
I can only dream of what should have been
And hope that I don’t awake.

For in my dreams I’m a wife and mother.
In my dreams, I never walked away.
In my dreams, he became my lover
and I never went astray.

Too stuck in my past
Too confused by the wrong man.
In a delusion that wouldn’t last,
I walked away and never looked back.

A few years ago I finally apologized.
My words too little too late to fix fate.
At least today I know where he is and that he’s happy.
But my awakening was far far too late.

Unlike Mr. Scrooge, my fate is all but sealed.
I’m a shell of who I could have been.
Too much like who I used to be,
Too much like I was then.

I’m single.  I’m overweight.
I look in the mirror and feel nothing.
For how do I not hate,
The person who made such a horrible mistake.

I slap on a smile, maybe even a laugh.
I have moments of happiness.
But none that will ever really last.
I’m just an old fool, lonely and afraid.

I work myself to death,
No one cares or respects.
I am in a career limbo
on top of everything else.

If only the ghost of Christmas past,
Could rewrite history for me.
I’d go back to that night at dinner,
Ever present, open, and loving I’d be.

I’d walk away from the wrong guy,
I’d give the right one a real chance.
I’d accept someone so kind to me,
For it was apparently my last dance.

But we can’t go back in time.
I can never make it right.
I must watch someone else live
what should have been my life.

I could have been a wife, a mother, been loved.
I could have had a family all my own.
I wouldn’t wonder what happiness could be like.
I wouldn’t ever have to be alone.

But I made a horrible judgement,
I continued mistake after mistake.
We can’t go back in time.
We can never ever erase.

And I feel like I’m old and bitter.
I feel about 83.
Because I think my life is stagnant,
And this is all it’ll ever be.

Coloring outside the lines

Why is it we have all these hopes dreams and aspirations for our lives, and we constantly plan for the future? We talk about settling down, having family’s, our career paths, but we don’t ever talk about just living life each day to the fullest. There’s that moment when you’re forced to come face-to-face with reality that life is short. You think it would wake you up. You think it would change you and maybe it does for a short while. Then it seems we forget again as easily as we were warned.

No one ever wishes to be sick or to get a difficult diagnosis. It’s not a pleasant thing. There’s very little positive in that, but it’s a wake up call. So what happens when we go back to sleep?

Do you ever just wish you could get in the car and drive, not come back, enjoy the freedom? You could feel the wind, the sun, the rain and let the car take you wherever it’s going to take you just like in the movies. I want to be spontaneous not because being spontaneous is a fabulous trait or something I want to work on, but because I feel trapped sometimes. Trapped in the life I’ve built. It’s not as if it’s a bad life, just so defined. I want to color outside the lines. I want to walk on a ledge. I want to feel before it’s too late. And sometimes I’m not sure I know how anymore.