Terror in the Year 9000

Might be the title, might be just something I have to say.  Things are pretty crazy these days.  If anything I want ever comes to pass, I might like to have a reckoning of these days before they ruin me entirely.  Something to pass down.  Not that it’s genius.  Not that anyone would care.  But maybe it would help motivate me to recall that there is more than just absorbing and consuming the plot points of other people’s lives as a method of passing my own.  It would, at the least, in the end, remind me that I have one or two thoughts that ping inside my cerebral cortex and make five hundred words worth of sense.

Tomorrow we vote.  What else is there but that? People might follow it up with prayer but prayer these days just feels like giving the Devil your PIN.  Suddenly all your hopes and dreams laid bare to people that have no empathy for them, no sympathetic regard.  I don’t know what will happen if people don’t put a chain on the beast.  I don’t know what it means for our undying souls.  People starve in this world every day, and in Yemen, by numbers that are so unholy, so unbearable to comprehend, the fact that anyone can sleep at night, can fold their hands and feel so pleased at the catbird seat upon which they sit blows my mind.   I don’t know how I will feel if the result isn’t positive.  I don’t know how to re-route the despair and fear.  I’ve done my part, I don’t know anyone who isn’t voting, if I find anyone I can reach out to tomorrow that will make any whit of difference, I shall.  And the rest has to be made to be survivable.

I say this because it is not as though I’m not doing my own sorts of small horror as it is.  We smashed up a bunch of people’s lives today.  Once I would have been despondent over the fact that people I work with are now no longer going to be working with me.  I would have known each person’s wife’s name, where their kid went to school, some factoid that would build a red thread between us.  I would be able to visualize the ways in which this is going to fuck their shit up.  Now, perhaps because I needed to find that way to make the job survivable – to not let it claim the creative parts of my self and soul – I walled off a lot of both myself and my interest in others.  So I don’t know the specific ways in which this damage has been done, I just know that it happened, and that distance is making it possible for me to think about parties and daylight savings and strange curiosities come and gone.

I think this is growing up?

More to say, more skin in more games.  Suffice it to say, I wanted to hear the world the way I say it and not through anyone else. So here I am.

Shifting The Numbers (14/365)

When I woke up like a bolt of lightning had run through me at nearly 5:00am, I was curious as to how the remainder of the day would go.  I woke up and got up and got shake and lingered a bit, laying there, drinking what I actually find as enjoyable as any Starbucks I’ve ordered.  I actually finish my shakes more often than not which I can rarely ever say for the former.

Well, it seems, that the energy has stayed with me.

Energy that has allowed me to exercise for forty-five minutes without feeling panicky and nervous and heart-fluttery which usually freaks me out just enough to stop.  My music was fast-paced and my stomp walking with Leslie Sansone felt like…exercise. It felt legit even if everyone and Cindy Crawford is lifting weights and doing yoga.  It was forty-five actual minutes and I felt every drop of that serotonin moving through me.  Oh, this, this is why people do this?

I have to imagine that just the regular walking and getting up and moving around that I’ve been doing in January has helped make it easy to shift a bit.   I’d half-planned just to see if my XBox would even play the DVD or if it had been scratched and ruined at some point between now and the last time I attempted this.  Caffeine, I’m sure played a role, but today…I don’t know.

Energy that stuck with me, too, to take garbage and recycling out, to wash pots and pans, attempt to make chicken stock (celery but no carrots, it is going to need work.), go to the store and try and find size 6 riding boots to zero avail, but ended up coming home with some random chicken, random Bordeaux-hued lipstick, some more gum, and some soda.  Slowly working on pushing that pop out of my life again.  To do laundry.  Order groceries.  Contemplate if in the next month or two if I want to try making keto bread.

And soon, hopefully, if I can stop distracting myself with random nonsense, make up my bed with some nice, clean sheets.

That’s a lot for me.  Maybe you and yours have all this shit locked down, but I am in a constant state of personal revelation when I handle anything without spending hours letting the thoughts run around in my mind, percolating a few drops of high-octane willpower before collapsing in a heap of your own making.

I know that better habits – habits at least like not buying Starbucks, even the low-sugar macchiato – make for days like this.  And if you can stack a few days like this, you can make your surroundings a place where you can trust that you have a clean bowl to cook your slightly more complicated low-carb food in and you’ve got space to move around in and you’ve got time as well.  So you don’t block yourself out of your own plans.

A little scary, mostly wonderful to contemplate.

The eventualities of sticking with this for a full year.  What it will mean.

Comme Ci, Comme Ca

No rush.  No Fuss.  No alligator guts.
This aims to be a wildly enjoyable Friday.
I have maybe another couple of hours, but all the reasonable work is done and I am not going to start a massive project so here I am.  I have to leave early otherwise everyone shall be paying me for all my fun and games and I am ethically heartburned by that.  Even if I could use the money.  I’ve already spent 45 minutes working on my French again.  C’est un stylo! Le femme n’a pas de voiture.  Or something.
I think, perhaps, it is harder to come up with the words lately because the angst in me has somewhat dissipated.  And even the angst about what I am eating – at the moment – is taken away from me and replaced by this earnest idea that I am doing something to improve my lot.  It is not a perfect scenario where the pounds glide away like so much latex beneath a sharp exacto-knife.  It is just not doing the aggressively wrong things – blunting with food the freaked out emotions, the overwhelmed and anxious empathy, the confused spirit who is now in places where she never thought she’d be – more often than I’m doing the sincerely good things.  The attempts at having vegetables become a regular thought, a plan.  The earnest excitement I briefly experienced at the thought of being able to cook butternut squash soup.   The desire to get those extra steps in.  It takes up the gaps in my head where the listless rambling lived.  There’s direction and traction now.  The words are not gone, per se, just redirected.  A mason steadily taking them and putting the bricks and the mortar one next to another.
I have never been sturdy.  Whatever my weight or the morphology of my personage, I have never been steady on my feet.  There’s always been a Santa Ana, a side-eye, a turn on the river. Some distance between my thoughts and my being.  I’ve always wanted to be in the ether, looking down at everything all at once, out of time and out of context. Safe, in that way, but also powerful.
Now, there’s this power in walking inside my own flesh.  In putting things where they go.  In washing a cup.  In following a routine.  Know that once those items are actually secured, there is this massive IMAX screen of life rolling out around and in front of you.  A panorama view unobstructed by the minutiae that means you sleep in clean sheets, you lean down for a pan and like magic, the one you were thinking of awaits.  The butter and the steak sizzles, the dream is not interrupted by the idea that you are a failure because your dreams sometimes break mid-thought.  You make the soapy water part of the dream.  You take away the choice for it to be depressing, low, external to the magic.  You make the laundry churn and the warm heat of the just dried hand-towels part of the care, part of the aerie your thought dance in.  A place you flutter through because there’s no reason to avoid it.  No reason to turn away from this charming scene where your muscles are moving, just as they were made to, to work through the blossoms and the remains of all your day’s plans.

Heaving (7/365)

I am eating a plate of red pepper and cucumber with some Italian dressing drizzled on top.   It is 9pm and I also have a cup of water.  With ice because we are now fancy people, I suppose.

I have no answers as to how, truly, I will make this time different than others.  I do know that it is late at night and there are chocolate croissants in this house and as much as I want them, I don’t want them more and so they remain on the counter.   And I am, still the girl who hates vegetables with a rabid, instinctive passion where I find them selectively invisible when I open the refrigerator door no matter the fact that I bought them just hours earlier.  Bought them because I think I should.

Now I am trying to eat them because I think I should.  So I can buy more at the store and not feel like shit for letting them decay to ooze in the front of my eyes.  To have consumed some nutrients, some balance, some cheap gesture to this idea that I don’t just need to lose weight, I need to gain health.  And that’s as good as I can do.  I don’t think it will ever fly in the confines of my mind to just adore a sprig of asparagus.   But I have to do things I don’t want to do to get past the circle jerk, the circle of farming implements I keep stepping on and cracking myself in the face with.  Adulting.

It’s strange, because I was so irritable today and I think it’s only because I decided in my excitement to do a bit of a pre-weight loss check of the scale.  I saw it hadn’t really moved.  I was given pause, but there’s enough in my mind to keep me busy and I didn’t think I really processed it.  But it bothered me, I guess.  All the live-long day, a rage face.  The old cycle, the muscle memory that I can’t seem to shift out of.  I needed to eat, but even then, as you slouch toward Bethlehem, the whole reason feels obscured.

It’s not obscure.  It’s not two weeks ago that me myself and I had been on an epic binge.  Plates of cookies meant for whole squadrons went down my gullet, popcorn balls oozing with Karo syrup, waffles upon waffles soaked with maple syrup.  Anything sugary and sticky,…Starbucks beyond counting.  Pizza, and oh, word, the Chipotle.  It was extensive and out of control.  If they had been booze bottles, I’d have been dropped in some kind of detox facility.  Like a hungry fire no amount of wood could sate.

It was both typical and extra-intense.  It needed to be dealt with.

Now, I have to shift vision.  I have to give myself some joy and not fall down on the job. One monthly celebration worthy of a party and a night out.  Not lots of penny-ante wastes.

I can do this.  Just get me through to morning.

 

 

Selva Oscura (6/365)

It is going to take the whole year.

It is not going to happen overnight.

But if I keep going like this, it will happen.

I haven’t fallen off, nor given up.  I’ve bypassed treats, held my focus, kept walking.

There’s nerves around these posts for some reason.  I’ve paused for some reason, just like I’ve been angry today at my sister and mother – my mother who is awaiting news post a mammogram and doesn’t really have anything to do with the anger, and am trying to find out what that reason is.  Which, as we all know, is the best use of the written word.  To figure out why the fuck your head is no longer connected to the rest of you and maybe release the vise grip that reason has on you.

I’m mad, I think, at J.  But it’s so intermingled with being mad at myself for not speaking up about it, not finding myself remotely able to speak up about it, that I can’t unpack it and make demands about it.  It just is this third or fourth idea.  The first two are the thoughts of who we are as ourselves, the third is who we are together, and now, now it’s who we are not.   And we’re not together? But? It’s such a vast, near-Biblical sense of Purgatory.   Of me asking and being shut down for things that were once so readily given.  Of time having worked us over when I was confused and I am still confused.  I don’t want to ask him to move here.  I don’t want to say I will help him with everything he ever needs.  I don’t want to say I’m willing to rattle my already punch-drunk world to make my feelings clear enough that we can both take this seriously enough that I’d understand I need to say those other things or the third thought dies.

And then we have a laugh and a concerted moment of caring and I cry less than I want to but more than I should and I think about the last year, a year that my writing dried up, my thought processes deteriorated, my ability to question what was happening to me diminished because I was petrified that the truth is that I need him to do things for himself that he doesn’t and he needs the same for me and some of the sincerely held beliefs are at odds with my own.  Some of the essential things I want..parts of which I know he doesn’t.

And if you can’t speak honestly, then, what do you have?

I just know from knowing the tricks that are in his head, the faith he’s placed in me, the heart he’s given both literal and figurative and that half of my trouble is being halfway there.  Of holding back at critical junctures.  And the break I want won’t actually fix the root of the matter.  I don’t live a life that is fully accessible to outsiders.  The change I’ve felt in that regard is solely due to J.  He’s pushed, gently, and…

to be continued…

The Charming Charmer Charmed (5/365)

I owe a lot of words.  A fair wheelbarrow full of words.  Days upon days of not telling you the cut of my jib.

I apologize and am going to start making up for it.  I came home straight away from work and took a shower, just to get my own deep and yet ever-incipient blehness off.  Or at least the top layer of it.  Really, I thought, in my way, in my way that eight years or more years of writing has yet to cure me of, I can just get by with a handful of hours of sleep. I can take the shower in the morning.  A little more time to game. A little more time in the world of make-believe.  Someone else’s make-believe, mind.

The morning, this Priestess of the Holy Dawn discovers, only entails rapture for those who drag themselves up to meet it.  And I was in no fit state to drag myself anywhere.  Just a tragic gamer mess desperate for one more hour when there wasn’t one more to be had at 6:40 in the a.m.  The girlness was incidental.  But I felt sure that as bad as the hair was, as unctuous and displeasing as it appeared, I could at least mitigate the situation with my makeup bag.   The one I regularly leave in my car for just such a purpose.

Well, clever me, clever girl, unfit but dragged down to the parking lot, the Priestess makes a second discovery: no makeup bag.   Then she and I have to make a quick decision, right on the spot.  Go back up and spend 2 minutes looking for it and possibly be a few minutes later and have to do it at my desk which is not either of our favorites…or just go and assume nobody in this vast Vampire Factory will ever turn their head in my direction.

Have you any doubt as to which the Priestess and I selected as our professional behavior for the day?  I swear, I must have looked like death scraped up and served on toast.  Just frightful.  And this is the day that so many new things and new people had to be met.

So I came home as quickly as I could and am determined to get some sort of color on my zombie face tomorrow.  The lesson to all of this is that if I don’t pull myself away to handle my shit, it catches up with me.   And embarrasses me even when I swear I don’t care and it doesn’t matter.  And the game will still be there.  Everything will still be there, I lose nothing to take care of what I need to take care of.

More in an upcoming post as to how the diet is going (not not well, huzzah!), just suffice to say that I’ve been dumb about thinking the world will suddenly bend for me.  Maybe for as long as you have ever known of me.  Maybe longer yet.  And I’m not about to wise up. But I can stop being so damned stupid.

Catching Up (4/365)

You are owed parentheses.
I am in a great state of regret.
I didn’t post yesterday.
It was not on account of a screw-up.  I didn’t fall into a burrito or capsize into some sugary sea.  I did just fine. Imperfectly, but fine.
I just forgot.  I was playing Mass Effect, struggling through that vault on Elaaden – which if you’ve played it, you know exactly what I’m talking about.  I also was watching Critical Role in this final week before it comes back and blows all our faces off and I just forgot.
It’s a reminder to me that habits take energy and thought to keep the repetitive action chain going.  At least, they do at first. The momentum on day four does not yet exist even if I don’t feel so wildly ravenous and despairing of not being constantly on the verge of eating something bad for me. Not eating to hurt somebody.  Frankly, I can hardly get anything of this lunch down as I take a moment away from frenetic emailing to try and sustain myself.  I have to do more, so much more, after yesterday’s completely ironic laissez-faire conversation with a coworker where I called my level of work blissful.
Many, many changes at a job that over nine months has nearly given me whiplash with changes.  Natural in this sort of business, but at the same time, the reactions of those around me encourage me to worry even more.  Wirrah, wirrah, sis boom rah.
It is apparent that my brain is half fuzz. Though, not as an answer to the question of perfect attendance here, just as a notation on how much of my thinking needs constant corralling.  I think about one of these changes at work – a departure for someone I work closely with and my mind instantly glances over at the chocolate bar that is on my desk.  A chocolate bar I bought before I started on January 1st and I have had in my purse and something needs to happen with it – and I think, oh, I could give it to this friend, I should do something nice for her, oh, I should take her out for lunch…but there isn’t time. But you know, some sort of celebratory lunch for me…?  It’s all serotonin and dopamine and giddy giddy giddy don’t stress.
I am not sure if those impulses, however much I can curb them, will ever go away.  That is a bit depressing to think about.   Day four is going to probably look a lot like day 304 in terms of me trying to drag myself towards the light.
I am actually doing well with the diet.  I am actually doing okay in that even though I eat spinach like I’m getting a spoonful of Popeye with every bite, and I feel positively tortured by vegetables…I am eating them, and I am surviving. I am hitting the bare minimum marks I need to hit to feel engaged and okay.  I don’t want to end any streak I know I’ve started.