Monthly Archives: December 2015

Answer Me! A Hypothetical Just For Fun

I’ve posed this hypothetical to a few people and expected to get the same answer every time, but I didn’t:

You’re washing your face in your bathroom and you have your eyes scrunched closed so you can’t see anything, including light. When you open your eyes, everything is unexpectedly completely dark. Your reaction is:

A. Damnit, the power went out!

B. Shit! I’ve gone blind!

I have a theory (actually, like a theory and a half) about which answer means what, but really, this was just a weird question I came up with ‘n I’m kinda curious to see how people respond. Don’t think too hard about it. Tell me in the comments! Followup next post!

-LB

P.S. Have a safe and happy New Year’s Eve! See all you lovelies next year! <3

Tagged: Answer Me!, blind, dark, electricity, hypochondria, hypothetical, light, New Year’s Eve, paranoia, poll, power, question

A Year of Healing

My version of New Year's resolutions is One Word.  I choose one word to direct my coming year.  It's a from-the-gut choice.  I toss and turn it over in my head and heart for days or weeks, working with God to choose what I need for that year.  I've been doing it for a few years now, and it never ceases to amaze me how my year looks in retrospect wrapped in that word.

My word for 2015 was HEAL.  I went into the year not knowing how that would play out.  In most cases, I just tucked that word away in my heart and went about my life.  But once in a while something would happen and I'd notice it.  I'd notice it was an element of healing.  I was healing.

I just went back and re-read my post from the beginning of the year, when I chose this word.  I read through the list.  And I noticed things, areas of healing that had happened, that I hadn't noticed before.  I'm so grateful for that.

But, truly, the biggest change has been my body.

I've got health issues.  Nothing major, just enough to keep me from being and doing what I want.  Enough to force me to see other ways of being.  Others ways to be of value.

I started the year off very unhappy with my body.  With its size and shape.  With its open rebellion against me.  With its struggle to control me, to make me submit to its whims.  Honestly, I was frustrated that I even had to have a body, because I felt it limited me in so many ways.

But things changed.

I don't remember exactly how or when it happened.  It might have started last year.  In fact, I think it did.  Last November I decided I wanted to add some color to my hair.  Not regular color.  Purple.  And early in December, I did.  I got about six inches of the bottom of my hair bleached and dyed bright purple.  Much brighter than I'd anticipated.  And more inches than I'd planned.  (Due to my own miscommunication with my fabulous hairdresser.)  All of a sudden my hair was troll doll purple.  My Little Pony purple.  No longer subtle at all!

I'd spent years hiding in plain sight.  Trying to be subtly present in the room.  Mostly because I was very unhappy with the weight I'd gained and the way I looked.  I felt miserable and it showed.

I loved having bright hair!  It gave me such a lift.  But I wasn't prepared for how others would react to it.  Suddenly, when I walked into a room, there was no question people would be looking at me.  It often made me uncomfortable.  But I have always tried to stand behind my decisions, even if they don't seem to make any sense to anyone else.  I've tried to live by the principle that I shouldn't make any decision, take any action, that I wouldn't be okay if it were exposed to the world.  Stand behind my choices - that's me!

So I decided to embrace it.  I decided to embrace me.  I shared photos of my hair on Facebook.  It was fun seeing how it faded and sharing that, too.  But I hated pictures of my face, so it was tricky to share my hair unless I had someone else take pictures from behind.  I have lots of picture of the back and sides of my hair, with my head leaning so that my hair fell mostly in front of my face.  Because I didn't like my fat face.

Again, I don't know the exact day it happened, but I decided to stop hiding from pictures.  I decided to allow pictures of myself, even some I didn't like, to be seen.  I decided the picture was just a moment.  Even if I didn't like how I looked in that moment, I liked who I was.  And I wanted to remember that moment and have evidence of my presence.

And in the midst of this, there were other changes happening.  I was healing in other ways.  Invisible, inside ways.

In February I heard the words that changed me forever.  In February I found the key that turned off the self-harm switch inside me.  I February I gave up self-harm for good.  Something I knew I was supposed to heal, needed to heal, but didn't want to heal.  I trusted.  I was healed.

This year I came to a healthier relationship with my dad.  I found my footing.  Mostly through taking care of my mom together, he and I have found a new respect for each other.  A new gratitude for each other.  Healing

I've come to a much healthier place with my mom as well.  As she's changing, as her world is changing, I'm finding my footing there as well.  It's been a tough slog.  It's going to get tougher still.  But I understand and accept it better now.  And that helps.  I feel less burdened and more compassionate.  And I feel love toward her.  The kind of love that's been missing for a while.  A healing love.  I'm grateful for that.

But the most noticeable healing I've experienced has been physical.  At the beginning of the year, I was a slug.  I could move and get things done, but everything exhausted me.  Everything was a huge burden.  I'd do what needed to be done and head straight back to bed.  I was so tired and miserable and uncomfortable in my own body.

Again, I don't remember exactly when it happened.  But I know it started before my physical.  As I was approaching my physical, I was evaluating things and had decided I wanted to get off one of the medications I was on.  And, dang it, I wanted to talk to my doctor about losing weight.  My body wanted to move.

Now that I think about it, I think that was how it started.  My body ached.  I lay in my bed aching, and I knew it was because my body wanted to move.  And my brain wanted my body to move.  But I was so exhausted.  Completely depleted.  I had nothing more to push my body with.  Gravity was pulling so hard.

But I wanted to move.

So at my physical, I talked to my doctor.  We made a couple of medication changes.  And I made a plan.  Eat better.  Move.  That was the gist of it.  And that's what I did.  I changed how and what I ate.  And I started walking.

Since then I've walked three 5ks; I ran a little in the last one.  I've injured myself (plantar fasciitis and shin splints), because I pushed too hard too fast.  (Hopefully, I've learned something and will do better now.)  I added bodyweight exercises.  I did some yoga.  I've done some Just Dance.  A little of this, a little of that.  I shared it all on Facebook, to keep myself accountable.  Exercise is now something that's a part of my life.  Part of who I am.  Part of who I want to be.  I want to be a runner!

And, let me just tell you, those are words I never thought I'd say.  I had no intention of running.  I started out walking.  I walked and walked.  Miles and miles.  (Which in and of itself was amazing to me and everyone around me.)  It was in my last 5k, the one where I pushed my body too far and it rebelled.  The one where I ran some.

Hurting.  Crying.  My body ached.  But not because of the injury.  My body ached to run.  I ached to run.  Weird.

I'm still working toward that.  It's a two steps forward, one step back thing.  My body doesn't recover like it used to.  I can't just decide I'm going to go push it for hours and hours and not pay for it like I could in high school.  These days, the cost of pushing is a bit higher.  But not too high.  Not so high that it's not worth it.  And if I pace myself instead of diving off the cliff, which is my inclination, I can do it.  Baby steps.  I'm working on that.

Since May I've lost 33 pounds.  I've gone down a pant size.  I've lost inches here and there.  My face has thinned.  And all of that's great.  But it's not what's most important.

I feel like I've found me.  Like my body and I are working together again.  I've proven I can do this.  I'm not at complete peace about my body all the time, but I'm doing so much better.  I'm so much happier.  I feel more whole.

Like each year in the past, I will carry this word forward with me.  It will remain in my heart.  It will continue to drive me in ways I won't notice until I look back.

And I'm so excited to share my word for 2016!  But that'll be tomorrow.

A Year of Healing

My version of New Year's resolutions is One Word.  I choose one word to direct my coming year.  It's a from-the-gut choice.  I toss and turn it over in my head and heart for days or weeks, working with God to choose what I need for that year.  I've been doing it for a few years now, and it never ceases to amaze me how my year looks in retrospect wrapped in that word.

My word for 2015 was HEAL.  I went into the year not knowing how that would play out.  In most cases, I just tucked that word away in my heart and went about my life.  But once in a while something would happen and I'd notice it.  I'd notice it was an element of healing.  I was healing.

I just went back and re-read my post from the beginning of the year, when I chose this word.  I read through the list.  And I noticed things, areas of healing that had happened, that I hadn't noticed before.  I'm so grateful for that.

But, truly, the biggest change has been my body.

I've got health issues.  Nothing major, just enough to keep me from being and doing what I want.  Enough to force me to see other ways of being.  Others ways to be of value.

I started the year off very unhappy with my body.  With its size and shape.  With its open rebellion against me.  With its struggle to control me, to make me submit to its whims.  Honestly, I was frustrated that I even had to have a body, because I felt it limited me in so many ways.

But things changed.

I don't remember exactly how or when it happened.  It might have started last year.  In fact, I think it did.  Last November I decided I wanted to add some color to my hair.  Not regular color.  Purple.  And early in December, I did.  I got about six inches of the bottom of my hair bleached and dyed bright purple.  Much brighter than I'd anticipated.  And more inches than I'd planned.  (Due to my own miscommunication with my fabulous hairdresser.)  All of a sudden my hair was troll doll purple.  My Little Pony purple.  No longer subtle at all!

I'd spent years hiding in plain sight.  Trying to be subtly present in the room.  Mostly because I was very unhappy with the weight I'd gained and the way I looked.  I felt miserable and it showed.

I loved having bright hair!  It gave me such a lift.  But I wasn't prepared for how others would react to it.  Suddenly, when I walked into a room, there was no question people would be looking at me.  It often made me uncomfortable.  But I have always tried to stand behind my decisions, even if they don't seem to make any sense to anyone else.  I've tried to live by the principle that I shouldn't make any decision, take any action, that I wouldn't be okay if it were exposed to the world.  Stand behind my choices - that's me!

So I decided to embrace it.  I decided to embrace me.  I shared photos of my hair on Facebook.  It was fun seeing how it faded and sharing that, too.  But I hated pictures of my face, so it was tricky to share my hair unless I had someone else take pictures from behind.  I have lots of picture of the back and sides of my hair, with my head leaning so that my hair fell mostly in front of my face.  Because I didn't like my fat face.

Again, I don't know the exact day it happened, but I decided to stop hiding from pictures.  I decided to allow pictures of myself, even some I didn't like, to be seen.  I decided the picture was just a moment.  Even if I didn't like how I looked in that moment, I liked who I was.  And I wanted to remember that moment and have evidence of my presence.

And in the midst of this, there were other changes happening.  I was healing in other ways.  Invisible, inside ways.

In February I heard the words that changed me forever.  In February I found the key that turned off the self-harm switch inside me.  I February I gave up self-harm for good.  Something I knew I was supposed to heal, needed to heal, but didn't want to heal.  I trusted.  I was healed.

This year I came to a healthier relationship with my dad.  I found my footing.  Mostly through taking care of my mom together, he and I have found a new respect for each other.  A new gratitude for each other.  Healing

I've come to a much healthier place with my mom as well.  As she's changing, as her world is changing, I'm finding my footing there as well.  It's been a tough slog.  It's going to get tougher still.  But I understand and accept it better now.  And that helps.  I feel less burdened and more compassionate.  And I feel love toward her.  The kind of love that's been missing for a while.  A healing love.  I'm grateful for that.

But the most noticeable healing I've experienced has been physical.  At the beginning of the year, I was a slug.  I could move and get things done, but everything exhausted me.  Everything was a huge burden.  I'd do what needed to be done and head straight back to bed.  I was so tired and miserable and uncomfortable in my own body.

Again, I don't remember exactly when it happened.  But I know it started before my physical.  As I was approaching my physical, I was evaluating things and had decided I wanted to get off one of the medications I was on.  And, dang it, I wanted to talk to my doctor about losing weight.  My body wanted to move.

Now that I think about it, I think that was how it started.  My body ached.  I lay in my bed aching, and I knew it was because my body wanted to move.  And my brain wanted my body to move.  But I was so exhausted.  Completely depleted.  I had nothing more to push my body with.  Gravity was pulling so hard.

But I wanted to move.

So at my physical, I talked to my doctor.  We made a couple of medication changes.  And I made a plan.  Eat better.  Move.  That was the gist of it.  And that's what I did.  I changed how and what I ate.  And I started walking.

Since then I've walked three 5ks; I ran a little in the last one.  I've injured myself (plantar fasciitis and shin splints), because I pushed too hard too fast.  (Hopefully, I've learned something and will do better now.)  I added bodyweight exercises.  I did some yoga.  I've done some Just Dance.  A little of this, a little of that.  I shared it all on Facebook, to keep myself accountable.  Exercise is now something that's a part of my life.  Part of who I am.  Part of who I want to be.  I want to be a runner!

And, let me just tell you, those are words I never thought I'd say.  I had no intention of running.  I started out walking.  I walked and walked.  Miles and miles.  (Which in and of itself was amazing to me and everyone around me.)  It was in my last 5k, the one where I pushed my body too far and it rebelled.  The one where I ran some.

Hurting.  Crying.  My body ached.  But not because of the injury.  My body ached to run.  I ached to run.  Weird.

I'm still working toward that.  It's a two steps forward, one step back thing.  My body doesn't recover like it used to.  I can't just decide I'm going to go push it for hours and hours and not pay for it like I could in high school.  These days, the cost of pushing is a bit higher.  But not too high.  Not so high that it's not worth it.  And if I pace myself instead of diving off the cliff, which is my inclination, I can do it.  Baby steps.  I'm working on that.

Since May I've lost 33 pounds.  I've gone down a pant size.  I've lost inches here and there.  My face has thinned.  And all of that's great.  But it's not what's most important.

I feel like I've found me.  Like my body and I are working together again.  I've proven I can do this.  I'm not at complete peace about my body all the time, but I'm doing so much better.  I'm so much happier.  I feel more whole.

Like each year in the past, I will carry this word forward with me.  It will remain in my heart.  It will continue to drive me in ways I won't notice until I look back.

And I'm so excited to share my word for 2016!  But that'll be tomorrow.

A Year of Healing

My version of New Year's resolutions is One Word.  I choose one word to direct my coming year.  It's a from-the-gut choice.  I toss and turn it over in my head and heart for days or weeks, working with God to choose what I need for that year.  I've been doing it for a few years now, and it never ceases to amaze me how my year looks in retrospect wrapped in that word.

My word for 2015 was HEAL.  I went into the year not knowing how that would play out.  In most cases, I just tucked that word away in my heart and went about my life.  But once in a while something would happen and I'd notice it.  I'd notice it was an element of healing.  I was healing.

I just went back and re-read my post from the beginning of the year, when I chose this word.  I read through the list.  And I noticed things, areas of healing that had happened, that I hadn't noticed before.  I'm so grateful for that.

But, truly, the biggest change has been my body.

I've got health issues.  Nothing major, just enough to keep me from being and doing what I want.  Enough to force me to see other ways of being.  Others ways to be of value.

I started the year off very unhappy with my body.  With its size and shape.  With its open rebellion against me.  With its struggle to control me, to make me submit to its whims.  Honestly, I was frustrated that I even had to have a body, because I felt it limited me in so many ways.

But things changed.

I don't remember exactly how or when it happened.  It might have started last year.  In fact, I think it did.  Last November I decided I wanted to add some color to my hair.  Not regular color.  Purple.  And early in December, I did.  I got about six inches of the bottom of my hair bleached and dyed bright purple.  Much brighter than I'd anticipated.  And more inches than I'd planned.  (Due to my own miscommunication with my fabulous hairdresser.)  All of a sudden my hair was troll doll purple.  My Little Pony purple.  No longer subtle at all!

I'd spent years hiding in plain sight.  Trying to be subtly present in the room.  Mostly because I was very unhappy with the weight I'd gained and the way I looked.  I felt miserable and it showed.

I loved having bright hair!  It gave me such a lift.  But I wasn't prepared for how others would react to it.  Suddenly, when I walked into a room, there was no question people would be looking at me.  It often made me uncomfortable.  But I have always tried to stand behind my decisions, even if they don't seem to make any sense to anyone else.  I've tried to live by the principle that I shouldn't make any decision, take any action, that I wouldn't be okay if it were exposed to the world.  Stand behind my choices - that's me!

So I decided to embrace it.  I decided to embrace me.  I shared photos of my hair on Facebook.  It was fun seeing how it faded and sharing that, too.  But I hated pictures of my face, so it was tricky to share my hair unless I had someone else take pictures from behind.  I have lots of picture of the back and sides of my hair, with my head leaning so that my hair fell mostly in front of my face.  Because I didn't like my fat face.

Again, I don't know the exact day it happened, but I decided to stop hiding from pictures.  I decided to allow pictures of myself, even some I didn't like, to be seen.  I decided the picture was just a moment.  Even if I didn't like how I looked in that moment, I liked who I was.  And I wanted to remember that moment and have evidence of my presence.

And in the midst of this, there were other changes happening.  I was healing in other ways.  Invisible, inside ways.

In February I heard the words that changed me forever.  In February I found the key that turned off the self-harm switch inside me.  I February I gave up self-harm for good.  Something I knew I was supposed to heal, needed to heal, but didn't want to heal.  I trusted.  I was healed.

This year I came to a healthier relationship with my dad.  I found my footing.  Mostly through taking care of my mom together, he and I have found a new respect for each other.  A new gratitude for each other.  Healing

I've come to a much healthier place with my mom as well.  As she's changing, as her world is changing, I'm finding my footing there as well.  It's been a tough slog.  It's going to get tougher still.  But I understand and accept it better now.  And that helps.  I feel less burdened and more compassionate.  And I feel love toward her.  The kind of love that's been missing for a while.  A healing love.  I'm grateful for that.

But the most noticeable healing I've experienced has been physical.  At the beginning of the year, I was a slug.  I could move and get things done, but everything exhausted me.  Everything was a huge burden.  I'd do what needed to be done and head straight back to bed.  I was so tired and miserable and uncomfortable in my own body.

Again, I don't remember exactly when it happened.  But I know it started before my physical.  As I was approaching my physical, I was evaluating things and had decided I wanted to get off one of the medications I was on.  And, dang it, I wanted to talk to my doctor about losing weight.  My body wanted to move.

Now that I think about it, I think that was how it started.  My body ached.  I lay in my bed aching, and I knew it was because my body wanted to move.  And my brain wanted my body to move.  But I was so exhausted.  Completely depleted.  I had nothing more to push my body with.  Gravity was pulling so hard.

But I wanted to move.

So at my physical, I talked to my doctor.  We made a couple of medication changes.  And I made a plan.  Eat better.  Move.  That was the gist of it.  And that's what I did.  I changed how and what I ate.  And I started walking.

Since then I've walked three 5ks; I ran a little in the last one.  I've injured myself (plantar fasciitis and shin splints), because I pushed too hard too fast.  (Hopefully, I've learned something and will do better now.)  I added bodyweight exercises.  I did some yoga.  I've done some Just Dance.  A little of this, a little of that.  I shared it all on Facebook, to keep myself accountable.  Exercise is now something that's a part of my life.  Part of who I am.  Part of who I want to be.  I want to be a runner!

And, let me just tell you, those are words I never thought I'd say.  I had no intention of running.  I started out walking.  I walked and walked.  Miles and miles.  (Which in and of itself was amazing to me and everyone around me.)  It was in my last 5k, the one where I pushed my body too far and it rebelled.  The one where I ran some.

Hurting.  Crying.  My body ached.  But not because of the injury.  My body ached to run.  I ached to run.  Weird.

I'm still working toward that.  It's a two steps forward, one step back thing.  My body doesn't recover like it used to.  I can't just decide I'm going to go push it for hours and hours and not pay for it like I could in high school.  These days, the cost of pushing is a bit higher.  But not too high.  Not so high that it's not worth it.  And if I pace myself instead of diving off the cliff, which is my inclination, I can do it.  Baby steps.  I'm working on that.

Since May I've lost 33 pounds.  I've gone down a pant size.  I've lost inches here and there.  My face has thinned.  And all of that's great.  But it's not what's most important.

I feel like I've found me.  Like my body and I are working together again.  I've proven I can do this.  I'm not at complete peace about my body all the time, but I'm doing so much better.  I'm so much happier.  I feel more whole.

Like each year in the past, I will carry this word forward with me.  It will remain in my heart.  It will continue to drive me in ways I won't notice until I look back.

And I'm so excited to share my word for 2016!  But that'll be tomorrow.

Happy New Year!

Happy New Year from Karachi, Pakistan.

(Can’t seem to upload any pictures except the peacock. I’ll try again soon, having a wonderful time with my family.)

RSCN7098


Public healthcare sector blues

Originally posted on Our Lived Experience:
“This is the worst I’ve seen you in almost a year.” I wasn’t so bad though… The patient ahead of me wore bright yellow overalls stamped ‘remand/detainee’ and clanked past in metal shackles. Therapy was tough today, naturally, because things have been tougher than usual lately. We talked about…

The Dish And Its Dwellers Ruin Everything

So twas after nine last night, I was feeling calm, enjoying the last 20 minutes of San Andreas…when R disrupted and harshed my mellow. First wanting to make sure I hadn’t changed his email password. Then he called back and informed me his account had been frozen due to one of computers logging in “perpetuating viruses.” So…I was accused.

And more than fucking miffed and offended. Because yeah, it has to be the poor chick, couldn’t possibly be that ape like creature who rents the loft in the shop and spends most waking moments surfing porn thus infecting the computer daily.

So rather than finish my movie I went into instant panic mode, shutting my stuff down from the net connection, scanning everything including my wifi network, android phone, tablet,

virus scan, adware scan, malware scan, adw cleaner…I nodded off and woke at 1 a.m. to check the scans because being accused of being a virus magnet upset me so much, especially since he’d already determined his iphone can never get viruses and his laptop at home has barely been used and oh, the desktop at the shop was just scanned three weeks ago…(YEAH, FUCKFACE, I REMOVED THREE VIRUSES AND 127 MALWARE THREATS DUE TO *SOMEONE’S* PORN ADDICTION!)

No sooner than I nodded off again…Spook came to my bed and decided it was time to have a marathon yap chat. Took ninety minutes for her to go back to sleep, so it was more like two and half before I went back down. All the while she hogged most of the bed and I had to play Twister just to avoid crushing all the cats on the bed…

Of all the scans, two adware issues were turned up, and one was on the computer I haven’t even had connected to the net in months, let alone accessed his email. Jebus. Just so damned infuriating how he never pays any mind to my “don’t call after nine” edict cos it’s med time and if I am upset then the meds wear off and I gotta do it all over again…You don’t go setting off panic attacks in someone with panic disorder at fucking bedtime, you douchebag. Oh and he had the audacity to make a snarky comment about “when do you get to send your kid back to school, I need help.”

Six days of peace I had from the dish and its dwellers, I was even starting to feel isolated enough where perhaps spending a bit of time “out there” “with others” didn’t seem so daunting.

And he undoes it in a blink and wonders why I want to take a shovel to his skull.

He can rest assured after this bullshit that I will NEVER use any of my own devices, or my wifi network, to check his mail, order his parts, or do any of his bidding again. FFS, the shop computer had a keystroke logger on it a couple months back. Never occurred to him a hacker could have captured a shitload of info before it was caught and removed which might explain why some dude in Indonesia hacked his Amazon account and email and ordered a bunch of shit on his credit card…

Have I been hacked or even had to change my email password? NOPE. Though I do change my password when the panxiety kicks in. Plus, in spite of not having a fancy degree like him, I don’t use the exact same password for every account. Moron.

I thought today was going to be better cos the sun was out when I first got up. Ha. That lasted about forty minutes before going MIA. I guess my “bright side” is at least for the first time in five days it wasn’t fucking pouring cats, dogs, and squids. Gray and cold is the default now, I suppose. So my mood never really did lift up much and then…

Further splat. I got my Magicjack updated and working on a different computer so I can actually call people now so I called mom…I asked if she’d babysit tonight so I can go to my early morning dr appt tomorrow without kid in tow (she doesn’t like to get up early). Nope. She insists New Year’s Eve so I muttered, “Yeah, I couldn’t possibly want to spend it with my kid.” And she sneered, “I figured you wanted to get drunk.”

Pfft, getting drunk on New Year’s is as cliche as wearing green on St Patrick’s Day.

Suffice it to say, I have my kid tonight but she will be over there tomorrow because obviously it’s what’s more important to my idget mother than them doing a goddamn thing that might be of assistance to me. One more reason to hate the dish and its dwellers.

“But if you needed a sitter why didn’t you tell me?”

Batshit old woman.

I hovered in the mood “fuck it all” gutter for awhile..Then I got up and tackled the rest of the laundry, managing to fold six baskets and get them all put away so that’s one less stressor placed on me. My kid begged me to fix omelettes so we ran out for shredded cheese. The car died eleven times. It was awesome. And by that, I mean bullfuckingshit miserable stupid  ass electronic carb. I dread going out for that reason enough on its own cos one day someone is gonna be yakking on their damn phone and not notice my car has died and just slam right on into me. Sadly I can’t even say, oh, well just buy me a new carb for my birthday, Dad. Because it’s a fucking electronic carb and they are infamous for all doing this same damned thing during cold and wet weather. S0 joy joy fucking joy.

I got my kid fed and bathed, then I tossed my own skanky self into a shower and put on my footed jammies cos I am cold and I am anxiety ridden and frankly…this is all the comfort I am getting at the moment even if I feel like a six year old.

SUPPOSEDLY the disability checks will be deposited tomorrow as the normal day is a weekend. I will sleep and wake even more tonight fretting about that. Then if it is there I have to get out to the DMV and pay them over a hundred bucks for the sticker renewal for the car. Nothing says joy like the damned DMV.

That’s after I drag my kid along with me to the shrink, hope she behaves, and pray to the pegacorn priestesses that he will listen and HEAR me when I say…The Cymblotto is making me a damned nervous wreck and I need Lithium.

For everyone’s talk about how mood stabilizers kill creativity…I got to looking back at my longest writing jags…And ALL of them were while I was on Lithium. Every. Single. One. I guess my brain needs slowed down that much.I can’t think of a better gift for my birthday than for my brain to quiet down and allow me to have my writing back. Now if the child support order goes through, that’s just gravy. But money can’t buy my writing flame and more than all else…I want that back.

Maybe if I were writing I’d have less venom to spew here.

Gonna be a long night and a bitch getting to and staying asleep until I can rip the bandage off and be done with the dish tomorrow. And so help me if R calls again tonight after nine, I am NOT answering it, period.

I’m gonna tell him his stupid iphone gave my tracfone elitist snob cooties so we may only ever speak in person now.

Thanks to Diane for this…In memory of Lemmy, with admiration…

facebook_1451448160226


I Wish I Could…(Almost Wordless Wednesday)

Today, missing a person in my life who hasn’t completely left it, but pushes me away tiny bit by tiny bit.  There is so much I want to say, that I won’t, that I can’t (for various reasons).  I had a person in my life for almost 34 years who I thought loved me, for me, and treated me as his own.  Now that things are different, I yearn to be able to turn to him as I did all of those years, but my mind and heart have been so damaged by the past year, and all of his words, his actions and inactions, that I have to leave it alone.  This may end up being the first DBT complete “burning bridges” that I have to do.  I hope it doesn’t come to that, but I don’t see any change in the future, and if I look back far enough, it wasn’t usually good enough to make me feel okay in the first place.

 

 


Filed under: Almost Wordless Wednesday Tagged: burning bridges, children, DBT, divorce, Family, love, parents, relationships

Books I Read in 2015

Open Head

The most books I’ve read in a year since electroshock!  It gets easier and easier.  Thank you, Suanne Wilmen, MHS Reading Teacher, for helping me get my brain back!

Ω Ω Ω

•Ahlborn, Ania. Within These Walls.  The one good thing about this book is the ending—a twist worthy of a horror novel.  But getting to that ending is torture and not worth the effort.  I can’t count the times I threw this across the room because the characters were so incredibly dumb.  If there’s one thing I cannot stand, especially in a horror novel, is the stereotypical, obtuse dolt.  Gee, did someone break into my house and rearrange my furniture?  Why is a bloody specter grinning from my bathroom mirror?  Pfft!  Pull on a red shirt already and join the Enterprise, because, buddy, you’re toast.  Oops.  Did I spoil that ending?

•Binchy, Maeve.  Tara Road.  I found this on the “Free Books” table at the library, knew Binchy was Irish, and thought “what the heck.”  Once I got into it, I kept thinking of Ellen over at Notes from the U.K. and our discussions on how we, as American writers, anguish over making our U.K. characters sound authentic.  Binchy’s characters will never sound anything other than Irish—no matter what nationality she says they are—which I found delightful.  This soap opera with an Irish brogue was lots of fun.

Written In Red.indd•Bishop, Anne.  Written in Red.  In this alternate universe, The Others are the predominant intelligent species on Earth.  Basically, shape-shifters, they tolerate humanity—barely.  When a young woman seeks refuge with an Other community, the repercussions ripple across the globe.  The story is well written with a cool premise and interesting characters.  I got bit hard and needed more.

•Bishop, Anne.  Murder of Crows.  The sequel to Written in Red.  Meg and her friends, both Other and human, discover that blood prophets—young girls who see the future when their skin is cut—are the source of two terrifying drugs.  This time out, we get to see how the different regions interact, meet new Others, and watch the “friendship” between Meg and Simon Wolfgard grow.  Arroooo!

•Bishop, Anne.  Vision in Silver.  The third book in Bishop’s “The Others” series.  I’m completely hooked. Love the characters, love the world, love the intrigue.  You’d think if you lived by the leave of a race that could wipe you off the face of the earth, you’d play nice.  But we’re talking about humans, who are the worst at learning from history. Bishop makes me believe we could be that dumb.

•Bishop, Anne.  The Pillars of the World.  Since I loved Bishop’s The Others series, I thought I’d see what else she’d written.  This high-fantasy story involves witches, The Fae, and witch-hunts.  The Fae are a mash-up of pagan and Greco-Roman gods with the requisite arrogance, vanity and very short memories.  Their land is disappearing, and they stand around wringing their hands and pouting.  They are too similar to human beings in this respect to be very interesting.

cashore

•Cashore, Kristin. Fire.  On this side of Cashore’s world (introduced in Graceling—see last year’s list), there be monsters—animals that look like regular critters except for their rainbow colors and appetite for human flesh.  Monsters cast a kind of glamour over non-monsters.  People have learned to guard their minds, but some are better at it than others (who mostly get eaten).  Fire is a human monster, beloved or hated wherever she goes, so she tries to live inconspicuously.  But the country is about to be torn apart by war, and her special talents are needed.  I love Cashore’s storytelling and characters that live burdened lives.  A thousand stars.

•Cashore, Bitterblue.  In this sequel to Graceling, the teen-aged queen of Monsea is overwhelmed by how to help her people, who were ravaged by her psychotic and sadistic father-king.  Again, Cashore weaves a thoroughly believable world of real people with spectacular ability and complexity.  Her characters are smart.  The intrigue air-tight.  Alas, this is the last of Cashore’s books so far.  She’s better be busy scribbling another.

light•Doerr, Anthony. About Grace.  David Winkler’s precognizant dreams start when he is a child living in Anchorage.  He’s an odd man anyway, fascinated by water and the crystalline beauty of snow, but this terrifying ability pushes him to desperate acts.  Doerr’s writing is lush and breath-taking, his characters almost too painful to watch.  I never knew where this story would go, which was a delight, but sometimes cryptic does not equal artistic.  I felt cheated in the end.

•Doerr, Anthony.  All the Light We Cannot See.  I have no words for this book, just that there’s a reason I had to wait a couple of months for it at the library.  Read it.  You won’t be sorry.

The Bullet-Catcher's Daughter•Duncan, Rod. The Bullet-Catcher’s Daughter.  In this fascinating, steam-punk, alternate England Luddites and the supreme power of The International Patent Office keep global peace by banning technology.  Elizabeth Barnabas ekes out a living as a private detective disguised as her “twin brother.”  In exile, drawing on her skills as a circus brat and illusionist, she races to find a missing aristocrat and his arcane machine.  Each leg of her journey is more dangerous and convoluted than the last.  A very tasty read.

•Duncan, Rod.  Unseemly Science.  This is the second volume of Duncan’s Fall of the Gas-Lit Empire where technology is strictly regulated.  England is divided (north and south), and a new law is about extradite Elizabeth Barnabas over the border and back to a life of indentured servitude under (literally) a lascivious lord.  As she flees from capture, she finds marginal safety in taking a case as an intelligence finder for an odd and influential charity worker.  Once again, Duncan leads the reader on a wild ride.  This alternate history is delightful and weird.  I’m looking forward to volume three.

•French, Tana. The Likeness.  I love this author.  She writes tight, detective/murder mysteries set in Ireland.  This time out, her detective, Cassie Maddox, goes undercover to find the killer of a woman who could have been her twin.  French gets us into the head of someone slipping into another’s life and liking it, plus the double tension of all the ways she could get her doppelgänger wrong.  Brilliant.

Faithful Place•French, Tana.  Faithful Place.  Leafing through this book, I worried a little that my favorite detective, Cassie Maddox, had been replaced by the hot-shot Undercover detective introduced in The Likeness.  Frank Mackey is a smart-ass, and I wasn’t sure I wanted to tag along with him through a whole book.  Boy-howdy, was I wrong!  Mackey spent twenty-two years building a life away from his dysfunctional family of origin (we get to see why he’s such a  smart-ass), but a discovery on his old street sucks him back in to relive a pivotal and painful event in his past.  French’s characters are so real, they fly off the page.  Another winner.

•Guterson, David.  Snow Falling on Cedars.  The story begins with a murder trial of a Japanese-American in a small island community off the coast of Washington state in the early 1950s.  Other stories join and interlace this one—the internment of all the Japanese on the island in Manzanar after Pearl Harbor, the young love of the town’s white newspaper man’s son and a Japanese strawberry farmer’s daughter, the destruction of war on a soul and a community.  The book bogs down in detail sometimes, but the beauty and humanity are worth it.

while_they_slept-215x327•Harris, Charlaine.  Dead Until Dark.  After gorging on all seven seasons of HBO’s True Blood, I thought the books might offer more tasty tidbits.  Nope.  Plodding, vapid, with plot holes bigger than a stake through the chest, this first book in the series begged for the True Death.  I won’t be digging up any more of them.

•Harrison, Kathryn. While They Slept: An Inquiry into the Murder of a Family.  This book is mesmerizing.  It tells the true story of eighteen-year-old Billy Gilley, who murdered his parents and little sister in 1984, but not his sixteen-year-old sister Jody.  Harrison, herself an incest survivor, traces the patterns of family violence and abuse in the Gilley family through interviews with both Billy and Jody as well as an enormous amount of research.  Harrison is fearless in opening to the resonance between her own story and the Gilleys’.  For all three of them, violent trauma divided their lives into Before and After.  How does a person reassemble oneself after that?

hounded•Herne, Kevin.  Hounded (Book One in The Iron Druid Chronicles).  I have good friends who read good fantasy and share that tasty knowledge with me.  Thank the gods.  Now I have a whole series to enjoy about a 2100-year old Druid living in southeastern Arizona who runs a New-Age bookstore, mind-links with his Irish wolfhound, and gets legal advice from his werewolf and vampire attorneys.  Here, all the religions, all the myths, all the legends are real.  Most of them either shop his store or try to kill him.  So very tasty.

•Herne, Kevin.  Hexed.  More misadventures of Atticus O’Sullivan, the hunky Druid with the magical sword.  This time out, he deals with Bacchants (minions of the party god, Bacchus), witches—both good and evil, and a variety of demons and fallen angels.  Because he’s now a god-slayer, he’s attracting unwelcome attention from all the pantheons.  Favorite line: Demons smell like ass.

Invention•Herne, Kevin.  Hammered.  Atticus the Druid promised his attorneys (an Icelandic vampire and the alpha of a werewolf pack) that he would get them to Asgard so they could kill Thor (who is an absolute “fuckpuddle” and takes bullying to divine heights).  Along the way, the Fellowship acquires a Slavic Thunder God, a Finnish shaman, and one of China’s Eight Immortals who all want the Asgardian blowhard dead.  Mayhem ensues.  Favorite line: In many ways, I’m disappointed that “Star Trek” never became a religion.

•Kidd, Sue Monk. The Invention of Wings.  I always get a little nervous when someone from one ethnic group creates a protagonist from another ethnic group, then places the story during a dynamic point in history.  But, Sue Monk Kidd is not an author I worry about.  She tells this story of pre-Civil War Charleston from two girls’ point of view—one is a slave, the other her master’s awkward daughter.  The story is full of pain and horror, and beauty and grace.  It’s a treasure and a wonder.

220px-Mrmercedes•King, Stephen.  Mr. Mercedes.  Reading anything by Steve is like coming home for me, but this one offered nothing new.  I was engaged throughout—loved the protagonist, a retired homicide detective who wasn’t handling retirement well, and the set-up of him being contacted by “the one that got away.”  But the bad guy felt phoned in.  If you want good Steve, go read 11/22/63 instead.

•King, Stephen.  Revival.  Ditto.  Okay, buddy, you’re overdue to hit one out of the park.

•King, Stephen.  Finders Keepers.  I think I’ve caught up with my favorite author now.  I love that he brings back the team from Mr. Mercedes—the retired cop, his young neighbor kid, and the young woman with severe anxiety issues they helped rescue.  This time the trio tries to help a teen who finds a buried trunk from a home robbery thirty years in the past.  Steve knows how to build character along with the suspense.  And the bad guy in Mr. Mercedes who felt phoned in is getting ready to make me eat those words.

wally•Lamb, Wally. The Hour I First Believed.  Lots of books are labeled “tapestries,” but that’s exactly what this non-fictional fiction presents.  The fictional main characters are staff at Columbine high school at the time of the student killing spree; the protagonist’s grandmother campaigns for reform in women’s correctional facilities; PTSD, incest, abandonment, mental illness, drug addiction, mythology—the colors and texture of this tapestry weave in a disturbing, enthralling matrix.  Wally Lamb is a wonder.

•Lamb, Wally.  Wishin’ and Hopin’—A Christmas Story.  Not Lamb’s usual psychological taste treat.  More a nostalgic bon-bon.  And Wally thinks he’s funnier that he really is, but the writing is still fine.  He should stick to trauma and dysfunction, though.  That’s hilarious!

9418326•McNeal, Tom. To Be Sung Underwater.  Judith, a middle-aged film editor in California, finds her perfect life unraveling as memories of her first love in Nebraska push her to hire a private detective. Fully-formed characters, a deep sense of place, and well crafted.  If you’ve ever had to leave a love behind, this story will touch a deep chord.

•Pilcher, Rosamunde. The Shell Seekers.  A sprawling novel written in the ’80s about an elderly English woman and her grown children.  The story jumps from present day, to life during WW2, to other events in the family’s history.  I loved the Englishness of it, but found most of the characters tiresome.  The adult children are petty, even the daughter that Penelope (the protagonist) loves is caught up in the career madness of the ’80s.  But, Penelope is lovely, and her father, a famous artist, is fun, and all the English garden/cottage/sea-shore ambience is delicious.  I almost gave it back to the library, but didn’t.  That’s a pretty high recommendation coming from me.

200px-Olive-kitteridge_l•Strout, Elizabeth.  Olive Kitteridge.  Thirteen vignettes that weave together and around the title character in a small New England coastal town.  The characters are complicated, their lives messy and real.  I saw the HBO mini-series first with Frances McDormand and Richard Jenkins (both Oscar winners and stunning in this show).  I thought there might be more deliciousness in the book, and I was right.  Strout won a Pulitzer for it.

•Tyler, Anne. The Amateur Marriage.  I’ve always enjoyed Tyler’s weird characters, but this couple made my ass ache.  Michael and Pauline are the epitome of Socrates’  Unexamined Life—married during the rush of post-WW2, they never learn compassion or tolerance of each other, never question their own egotistical take on the world, never grow up.  They suffer, their kids suffer—it’s way too much like real life.  I have plenty of that already.

The Books I Couldn’t Finish

•Karr, Mary.  The Art of Memoir.  After reading excerpts on a friend’s blog, I got all excited.  I’m writing a memoir, and Karr teaches memoir writing—I was bound to find useful treasure.  Not so much.  And what is there, Karr buries in weird asides, like a whole gushing chapter about Nabokov who broke every “rule” in memoir writing, or endless details about her own process.  Ugh.

•Hoffman, Alice. The Dovekeepers.  This is one of those books heralded as “a major contribution to twenty-first-century literature.” The flap says it took Hoffman five years to research and write. According to ancient history, in 70 C.E., 900 Jews held out for months against Roman armies on a mountain in the Judea desert.  Two women and five children survived. Sixty pages in, I didn’t care. So, shoot me.


What Now?

writer

 

So I am feeling a little better- not perfect and perky mind you, but okay. I still like to spend too much time on the couch and I don’t shower like I should, but I am faking life.

Last night we had 10 people over for a little dinner/ wine party. This group stems out of my women’s support group.

I did well. I made two kinds of chili and baked cornbread. I set a festive Christmas table. The house looked great with the holiday decorations. And I got a shower! I looked pretty good and even got compliments on my hair. (This reminded me that I need to compliment others more because it feels so nice.)

I got through the wine hour and dinner pretty well but then my husband wanted to play party games and I was worn out. Another woman (an angel) came and helped me wash all the dishes and clean the kitchen while the others played games. Then I just sat in the den, visited with my daughter and rested.

They were here from 5:30 till 9. I think they all had a good time. They all know I struggle so that part worked out.

Everyone kept asking what I am doing for New Year’s Eve. NOTHING! I plan on drinking some cheap champagne and watching TV. Then taking my meds about 9 and falling asleep. Pretty exciting, huh?

So it is 2016 almost. I’m not big on resolutions, but I do like lists.

Wait, back to resolutions. I want to continue my weight loss and get a walking program going.

So I’ve been thinking about what I should do with my life this year and I came up with some ideas as to how I could spend my time. Some of this might seem lame, so don’t laugh.

COLOR: I keep hearing more and more about coloring as a therapy for adults. I think doing some every few days or so might be good. I’ve got a book and a big box of crayons and have done some pages. It’s not bad.

WALK: Everyone agrees I need to exercise. I found this walking program schedule where you start with 15 minutes and work up. I was doing this before I had my setback recently and I was getting to enjoy it. We have a nice neighborhood to walk in and nice weather so really no excuse other than ick! I’d have to get off the couch.

DRIVING: I’ve had driving anxiety and am starting to limit where I will drive. I need to drive more…even just driving for errandswriter (sorry this image is here again, don’t know how to delete it )and all will help. By the end of next year, I’d like to be back to driving wherever…on freeways, and night, and all around town. I’d like to be able to drive to neighboring towns, like maybe three hours away. This is going to be hard, but it’s important.

SEWING: I am working on a quilt of my own design. I am taking it very slow. I sew maybe a half hour or hour a day. I have seen some interesting looking quilting classes so I might take one. I also want to do some charity type quilting/ sewing.

FRIENDS: I cut my friend list down to 10 great friends. These are the people I want to focus on and do things with pretty regularly. I’ve neglected some people and I know I have lost one friend because of my illness. I will still text on occasion with some of my “less than great” friends, but I want to just spend time with certain people who understand and are fun.

CHURCH AND MISSIONS: I’d like to be at church pretty much every Sunday. I’d like to work more on the missions team and do more for the homeless and hungry. Our church has groups that do this and I know I could do one-time things. I just have to start signing up. I also want to be at my women’s support group pretty much every Monday. My prayer life and meditation need some help.

BLOGGING: I need to get back to this. I’m going to hit it every Wednesday. I have been having some trouble with changes WordPress has made. I need to figure out what I am doing and where to go for help.

LISTENING TO AUDIO BOOKS: This a good “rest on the couch” activity.

COOKING: I can try some different main dishes for the family and watch the calories so I can keep losing weight. I can even bake and eat just a little. I have to learn how “normal” people eat.

MOVIES: Would love to go to more movies. And I should drive there!

WRITING: I have two books I have written. One is long enough but needs an ending and lots of editing. The other is about half done. I’d like to get book #1 on its’ way to being self-published. I’ve had several friends do this, so I think they will help me with the steps.

So there you have it. Some ways I can spend my days productively. I just plan on looking at the list every day in the afternoon and picking out a few things to do the next day. Today I am writing to you, sewing, and going to a movie. That is enough.

I love all you guys and appreciate you reading and those of you who take your valuable time and comment. You are the best!

love, lily