It’s All That I Am

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So, when in doubt, when you’ve eaten dinner at 10:35p.m. because you suddenly thought you were ravenous for polenta and roast beef stacks with carrots and you realize that maybe your body is not happy with that choice at about 11:19p.m. when you’re due to be well on your way into your daily post, you should blog, as ever, about love.

This group is interesting.  It’s strange.  It is pulling me towards my best and shittiest behaviors and inner thoughts.  It’s this Mst3k group for people who are looking to date, and I don’t know if I’m looking to date, but I know that I’m looking, I have eyeballs and such and occasionally a twinge roundabout that reminds me that I am a lady with the parts of a lady that into, in generalities, the parts of a man.  If I may be so coarse.  So, there’s more gents than ladies in this group.  There’s a few people in the state, but it’s just starting so, there aren’t more than you could count on one hand for me, men and women included.  And this, I think, is good for me, because there isn’t that instant feeling of needing to progress yourself towards a meeting so quickly.  The men and women of the group are all, in some manner, geeks and nerds.  We’re all into some Venn diagram of genre literature/video games/comic books, you know the stuff.  We’re all at least on that level tangentially related to one another.  It does provide for an easy place to start with saying, oh, hey there.  You like x, I like x, isn’t x great?  Aren’t we great for liking x?  There aren’t strait-laced jocks who want to barge in and look you up and down and put a price on you.  Even that’s an awful…ah.

But that isn’t to say there isn’t some curious shit that goes down when you dump a pile of random geeks of varying ages in a “room” and say…all of y’all (with the exception of the gay and lesbian members who are a bit starved for choice at the moment) are open to the idea of “it” if they can just be convinced that you can provide them with “it”…so there’s a lot of unearned compliments (it could just be that I have zero comfort with anyone telling me I’m beautiful, particularly if I haven’t formed any level of attachment to them) and near-flounces and “nice guy” shit.  Ladies owing dudes time, messages, forgiveness of problems and defects.  But I can’t for a minute call anyone up on that if I am just as image-focused and projecting all my body issues out there wildly on everyone else so that a bit of fairly clever back and forth with a guy gets a bit deflated in my head, not by the epic distance of states upon states between us, but because I have an image of what I’d like to be happening.

Basically, there’s another guy in the group I like – a couple, really – but one I had a dream about, one who reminds me, I’m sure, on a distant level of Mr. Rochester.  I dunno if he likes me, only, that like a giddy teenybopper, I noticed he liked a picture of me.  Which feels like something, despite not being anything. All these behaviors that I’m messing around with…I know how childish they are.  I know that teenagers do them and recognize that they make people feel like shit and grow up and stop.  Game playing.

It’s just pushing me to get clear about my business.  That  I don’t have to feel mad at myself that I have a preference.  It’s nobody’s fault.

I’m just…ugh.

One more day until we enter the Twilight Zone.

Back on the Circuit

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Ah, well, hi.  Happy day after Easter.

No real clue if today’s post will just be long and winding and somehow end up 1500 words long to make up for the past two days absences, or if I will just realize that nobody really needs that much of my pontification on my state of being regarding a brief, passing illness and move on.

I just have to get back into the groove.  Of everything.

So the gross details of my absence are thus: I think I haven’t thrown up in ten years.  So a total body evacuation was a bit of a surprise.  Ahem. Without converting this all into nightmare fuel, the whole terrible situation sort of went on all night and I didn’t sleep. And in the process of being sick, all of yesterday I did the common thing of just zoning out.  My brain went on a vacation I know not whence while the body ached and shivered and shook.

Today, I was on the edge of being able to make it into work and not and circumstances being what they are, it really doesn’t make a hill of beans’ difference right now whether or not I’m there, so I elected to text the boss.  More than anything the problem was the detached mentality floating five hundred miles to the west of my head.  And so I slept till noon, rolled around, and ended up finally forcing myself upright for some chicken noodle soup and ginger ale.  Oh, and laying back down on the couch and watching extremely an random 80’s movie (The Rachel Papers?) and then a couple reruns of Grace Under Fire.

Grace Under Fire was one of those shows that was in the repertoire of casual family viewing for us as kids.  Along with the Torkelsons, Roseanne, Nick at Night, all of those TGIF sitcoms, cartoons, it was an acceptable way to pass a half an hour when I was growing up.   The internet was just coming around in the form of America Online and participating in it – though eventually, it became my end-all, be-all form of entertainment – was work.  TV was reliable and we would all gather around in the living room with dinner to laugh at the same thing.

I didn’t and don’t know all that much about actress and comedian Brett Butler’s addiction and breakdown that lead to the show’s cancellation.  I’m probably not going to watch so much of it to care in anything more than a gently empathetic concern for my fellow human, but man, it does seem sad to me that her talents here aren’t still lauded.

When I was a girl, I didn’t understand how great parts of Grace Under Fire were. Really, I think Gilmore Girls might count it amongst its predecessors in terms of razor-sharp dialogue delivered in rapid-fire quip form.  And yet, there’s a sincerity to her performance that shows why you’d want to give this woman a show.  You want to see her succeed.  Beyond the fact that she talked about domestic violence, she addressed feminist issues, her single-momness is central to her reality, not set aside because it’s inconvenient, she has this underdog quality that you root for.   I mean, you just have to watch that opening credit sequence which is so incredibly 90’s to see what they want this show to be…about Grace and her vision of the world.  The kids aren’t even in it.

I just started watching on this scene where she ends up just slightly falling for the seemingly awkward (but rather cute and clearly well-matched in terms of wit) chemist played by William Fichtner, and you can really feel her loneliness and ache and fear about the potential new relationship.  Her ex-husband was physically abusive and only a year behind her and her kids, so this is a whole pile of problems that she can’t quite wrap her head around, but yet.  Yet.  I feel like the chemistry is…well, palpable.  And so, incredibly gingerly, she lets that romance begin.  Even though she comments several times that she feels like she’s risking too much, she lets herself go out there into the deeper waters.

There’s more to watch (and you can on Hulu), but obviously, this romance doesn’t last until the show’s over so I’m watching these scenes as a shipper who knows her ship’s the Titanic.  This is obviously a healing situation for Grace, and somehow, on some level, I see the lessons in it for me.  It’s stupid, it’s selfish, it’s risky, but there’s something real and emotional and alive that needs to be seen.  That needs to connect and feel love. Something that all her shame and frustration and fury and wit can’t talk its way around.

She deserves the light, the open space, the parts of herself that he seems to illuminate.

I’ll be sad for her when she breaks up with him for good (or he with her as will inevitably occur) and wish that somehow they could have pulled a Parks and Rec and just seen what they had was good and found a way to write it into the show.  I suppose in the first season that her single-momness was seen to be of primary importance and a dude who loved her and gave her cassettes he taped of Aaron Copland music wasn’t going to make for good TV.

Still.

…not sure I was intending to write so long about that. I suppose it could be worse and I could have rifled off a few hundred words about Barabbas which I endured on Sunday for the first time.  I just need to make my brain work by generating words.  By experiencing and connecting to tangible things because living half in outer space frankly scares me a bit, someone might come along with scissors and I won’t be able to come back.

Steps: making an omelet out of the Easter ham I was too sick to have yesterday.  Putting on some Aaron Copland music.  Loading the dishwasher. Having my fill of gerund-centered sentence fragments.  Another hot bath.  Glaring inwardly at the fist my stomach has made.  Realizing that I’ve lost 2.6 pounds – so about 12 pounds in total thus far (I’ll take it however that comes even if losing 2 days on the planet seems a rough way to mark those numbers off.)  Worrying about my grandfather in the hospital with pneumonia again, though it seems he’s already progressing.  Thinking maybe that’s just wishful thinking.  Watching more Grace Under Fire.

 

 

Athenaeum

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So.  It’s a weird thing to both be aware of what you usually do and want to do it again and mostly do it, but then, not.

I know that sounds weird, but I think what I mean to say is I am still exercising and tracking my food on March 20th.  We made it through the winter and now the lion’s burst through and chased off the lamb.

I’ve lost about 10 pounds if we trust the scale – and I’m trying not to fight with it but to track what it says and try harder on my end if it’s slowing down.

I still have the same feelings about the weight loss.   The expectations of just finding a way to WANT it 24/7 with 100% of myself, and instead, I have this odd cycle of, oh my god, I’m actually losing weight – this is fantastic! I’m making good on my promises and goals and my sacrifices are getting me somewhere to oh my god, I’m losing weight – this means I’m capable of anything.  The barriers I’ve told myself are permanent, the way people respond to me because of my inherent physical flaws and shield of tubbiness, the protection I have against being fully accountable and in charge of my life is being burnt away.   Then this fear becomes oh my god, I’m putting back up those walls, I’m pretending I don’t have to get up and exercise, I’m giving up, I’m giving up, no!

Only now, so far, I’ve come back around at that no.  This is a rare development. Even today, I got on the bike.   I am contemplating another half an hour of something since the legs are getting the brunt of it these days.  I haven’t been eating perfectly, but I’ve been minding it.  I’ve been making different choices than I would have made in December. I have been stressed out of my everloving mind, and I haven’t crossed my fingers that binging on food would change that.  I haven’t tried to fill in these voids of time with mindless eating – instead, reading and writing and sometimes even exercise have kept me going.  I’ve wanted to, now and again, but it’s definitely different.

I have had a few days recently of just feeling…numb about it.  Scared, maybe, which is odd because at the same time, I also feel like I’m a little bit more comfortable with the new tightness, the inch or two here or there that is gone from where I expected it to be.  You get this idea that you’re doing so well, you need to do better.  You need to be perfect.

And for today, I want to tell myself…slow down.  You are going at the exact speed you need to go to get there and get there with everything intact and ready to live there instead of blow by it and crash.  You are okay.  You don’t need tomorrow or yesterday. Just track and do the work today.

Writing other things.  Reading.  Continuing with life.  It’s okay.

The Shape of Crazy

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Some days you have to just say that, well, okay, putting back the pint of ice cream a couple spoonfuls after you felt like you were losing control is a victory.

Going over and feeding the animals who needed you despite being lost in a video game is a victory.

Replying to an email you’d half-forgotten about for two days rather than feeling guilty you didn’t immediately answer it and blocking it out of your memory is a victory.

Knowing you needed some protein and getting up to cook a filling meal for yourself to keep yourself on an even keel even if you probably had less care over the calorie counts than usual is a victory.

Letting yourself be open to crying, mindfully checking your brain and giving yourself quiet time, even if you couldn’t actually break down and turn on the waterworks.  Realizing you couldn’t because you didn’t need to.  Because you are in the very midst of resolving the problem you would be crying about.  All of that is a victory.

Being not exactly when everything in you wants you on lockdown, wants you at quota, wants to take the knife and measure you flat against the lip of the cup is a victory.

Going through and putting in your calories even if it means you’re over.  Recognizing that even if you never put in your calories again, be it in this app or another, you are still eating them.  Not despairing over this is a real victory.

Accepting that this is that time of the month when you get extra hungry and you get extra angsty and you get extra low and you get extra extra about everything and you can’t change it.  You can let it go by and not change your behavior based on these few days.  Doing that is a big victory because the impulse to say, no, I am this shitty and failing and ravenous and out of control is strong.  That I am at all able to call upon the impulse to say I am an unassailable fortress of light and an indestructible obelisk of cardio exercise is a victory.

Cluing into the fact that the reason your face goes numb is because you crush it into your palm for hours on end whilst playing video games.  You are not suddenly developing bells palsy.  I am giving you this victory, but I do hope you’ll be a little bit more chill next time.

Looking at Sunday night without a violent fright about the Monday morning that follows is a glowing, smoking, white-hot victory.

Looking at OKC and seeing Mr. Confusion’s mug unexpectedly and feeling less strongly than I might is a victory of the good.

Being willing to forge ahead with all my big plans even if they feel impossible and deflated and imperfect and basically made of embers and not the fire they sparked.   It is my focus on them that makes them real, not their inherent worthiness.  Writing this story happens with me writing it.  Practicing driving happens with me putting myself behind the wheel.  Not giving up is my biggest possible victory.

 

 

 

Devil’s Resting Bitchface

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Okay.

I woke up fine.  Wrestled with the scale.  Is it the same or did I lose .8 lbs?   I got both answers and only one is really acceptable right now (no, it’s fine, I have a year, I have a lifetime, but you know, fuck) so I went back to bed so I didn’t have to think about anything and ended up sliding in and out of weird climbing dreams where I was clearly thinking way too hard.   A climbing pit inside a mall that was shutting down and I accidentally ended up getting left behind there and having to climb these odd manufactured mountains with these grips that just looked like regular drawer handles and it was, in some ways, easier than I feared.

Still, I woke up mad.  It might have been the email from my sister about needing to pay my part of the bills and being pretty sure that if I gave her any money I couldn’t pay my student loan payment and suddenly, last night’s exercise – a bit more intense than usual – had a delayed impact.

This is PMS.  Full throttle, son of a bitch, give me a drink and stay away from me or I will light you on goddamned motherfucking fire PMS plus, as it turned out, an odd explosion of anxiety and panic.  Even though got the go-ahead from the boss so I technically got paid, or will be on Monday and so did the sister, I think even the relief threw on the other side of Whack.  Wherein I decided, like a crazy person, that I couldn’t feel my cheek properly and then silently wugged over that.  And then basically proceeded to attempt the grocery story and doing the welfare check on the animals while my parents were away and eating and exercising over there and just…finding myself thinking bizarre and unhelpful things.

Nevertheless – I did buy food.  90% of it healthy, plus a miniature pizza aggressively encrusted with sodium.   Everything I ate I tracked and we’re under given that I did exercise…doing the 3 mile walk in the aggressively silent parents house with my music playing on my phone like some sort of funeral march.

I know this will pass, but grah, and shit, and ugh, and it isn’t stopping me.  It isn’t debilitating me.  It is just unnerving me and wasting my time.  Like, my dad texted us this picture of himself by a giant ceramic shark hung upside down on some pier somewhere in Florida where they are vacationing and, to my great relief, having a great time, clearly.  He makes a dad joke about having caught it after going sponge diving.  And I had a thought too morbid to post here and it’s like, great, thanks, that’s incredibly unhelpful brain.

And right now my brain is just cackling at me.  It feels as though it can see how desperately I’m working on myself, how I am really making an effort to exercise and how I am digging in, and it wants to upset the apple cart.  It wants to upset me into being afraid that my positive change is the trigger for the panic…and maybe it is, but only in the sense that this is a protective barrier around the security of the status quo.  It’s a test I have to pass this time.

 

Some Lady

incredible-strange-creatures-1568522Okay.  60 days in.  It was bound to happen.  Fred is on his way.  I feel the physical impulses and urges changing, just overriding my good sense and causing me all sorts of wayward thoughts.  Add on that a day where life at work felt particularly scattery and insecure beyond its usual scattered insecurity and my boss was particularly vulnerable and stressed with me and every empathic tendency I claim just wicked all of that up into my system so that I could offer succor and support and underline my loyalty.

All the while, I’m working on the copywriter angle, and contemplating bugging out when the window re-opens.  I absolutely care…I just need…money.   And to not have the burdens I have.

And so…food.  Today.  Shit.  I didn’t FUCK up.  I just fucked up. Lowercase.  I just said I didn’t care and ate with “abandon.”   Meaning I got a thing of crackers out and ate a bunch of crackers without counting them and then a few handfuls of chocolate chips.  Then I had pasta for dinner with one glass of wine.  Like a maniac.  But it felt for a few minutes like the old ways where shoving it in my mouth blurs any sort of mathematics attached to it.  The little noises, the little yelps that make me sad and nervous, I have to shut those up somehow when I do care.  I just sort of hit a wall.  I think I’ll be mad at myself in the morning when I get on the scale.

I am tracking, right now, as I type, my crappitude because of my stalwart desire to sweep it all away and not track it because it’s not Under.  But it’s still in the position where if I get my ass on that bike, it could be under.  I think I’ve guessed as accurately as I can right now. If I do this, it is going to have to go imperfectly because the bike surely doesn’t burn at the rate it tells me it burns, but I could do it even if it’s 9pm.  I could do something more than nothing.

…..

So, yeah, that happened.  I did get on the bike and I did pedal it until it says I burnt 200 calories.  I did that.  I did the sit-ups.

That feels oddly marvelous and because I was sweaty a bit from actually using these legs of mine, I got in the tub and the ending to the story appeared, magically, in my mind.  One of those Einstein playing the violin situations.

….

Oh, shit, while I’ve been sitting here trying to wrap my brain around reality and back again and figuring out the last fifty words on my post, it’s almost midnight.

Tomorrow is Saturday and that day is mine, free and clear.   I don’t have to give it to anyone else – except go check on the cats at my parents.

The way to get in the groove is to be in it.  Snap your fingers, simple as that.

Bastet

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Very interesting. I feel like the font changed on this thing – or this particular posting screen, as it seems there are several.  I don’t know why I like it, but I do.  Maybe it makes me feel more professional or erudite than I, or my topics, generally require.

So, my cousin/business coach + a strong macchiato (one of those artisanal, hand-roasted, coffee beans were psychically encouraged and played Mozart sort of places – only, you know, with a result that feels really worth the extraordinarily cheap price) meant I feel better.  This is also the coffee shop where I’ve been on two dates which also ended two amusing and somewhat fulfilling flirtations, so I think of it now as sort of an emotional bug-zapper.  I go there and feel big things – for better or worse.

She said if it were possible to set aside the anxiety about the money – could you look at this time like a gift?  After some hemming and hawing, I think, I think I might be able to do that.  I can buckle down and get something written beyond these posts.  I can do some work and get something out of this even if I didn’t choose it.   So, I guess, my plan for the first week is to just to feel that one out by making myself come home and use the afternoons for writing and, potentially, for sussing out a new job if that comes to be something I need to deal with.  She also gave me some ideas in that regard, too.

At this moment, for open projects, I have the novel that my sister and I are working on, my short story that I am doing for writers’ group/pleasure, my big novel of love and pain that has to eventually be finished, and now this whole weird collection of excerpts from this whole daily blogging adventure woven into some other essays I’ve written and other ideas I have about fear, anxiety, and where I am at and aiming for.   That one is obviously personal and the major block is I need to change enough to justify continuing it.  If that makes any sense at all.  I just feel like maybe there’s something I have to say that might be of value.  It’s weird.  Every time I want to throw that one out, I find a reason to keep plucking at it.

That’s a bit too much, really, and so I have to pick and choose and I constantly think I’m choosing the wrong thing and feel as though I’m cruelly neglecting the others.  Really, what I need is to finish something.  So I am forging ahead with whatever I can do when I can do it.

Maybe it’s the shot of caffeine, but I feel pretty creative and energetic right now.  And I still have one more day off, holy smokes!

Weight this morning indicated that I lost 1.8 lbs last week.  Okay.  So about 8 pounds in 8 weeks.  Okay.  Sure.  Well.  I am good with that. I don’t know what the next month or two of privations will mean, but this is a result of tracking on My Fitness Pal, fitting in exercise, eating much less, messing up, messing up again.  Just working on it.  Prioritizing it.  So.  Yeah. Let’s not count any chickens or any eighths of chickens.

But yep.  Onwards and inwards.