The Lust Ratio

I have had a good start thus far.  I have nearly drunk a glass of water.  I have had my shake.  I have charged my Fitbit even if it doesn’t seem to be noticing every step I take.  I have been able to have a moment of consideration about things I have otherwise felt too harried to contemplate.  These include this blog.

Obviously, for those rare few of you who have visited this page before, you will be noticing a difference.  I made, not an abrupt decision, but an abrupt pulling of the trigger on something I’ve been considering for a while and upgraded this blog.  The upgrade on WordPress doesn’t really move me into some new echelon of blogging elite, it just takes care of a few things I found irritating.  The ads, for starters, which definitely screams quality and kind of upset the layout, more space so if I wanted to add another three or four years worth of pictures I could. (I don’t – but I would like to have some pictures sometime, so you’ll see those.)  It also comes with a domain name and because someone out there owns lustrata.com, I’ve had to improvise to make use of this spectacular offer.

So now, if you wanted to get to my website…you could go to thelustratio.com.  Which is, I feel the need to clarify, not The Lust Ratio.   That sounds like some sort of shitty dating principles, self-help, possibly terrible and upsetting nonsense book that would get famous for a hot minute and then become a joke for the next fifty years. No. It’s the lustratio, the Roman purification ritual upon which this blog was founded.

Conceptually.  I haven’t slaughted a pig of late.  Nor a ram.  Nor a bull.  It is just the idea of getting yourself back in good graces.  Of suffering in order to make that happen.  Of ritual being the bridge between what was and what is desired to be.   That’s what we’ve drove around the dunes of in this blog for the past eightish years?  We.  I.  Just me.  Just me just struggling with myself.  My weight.  My relationships.  My organizational skills.  My ability to hack it at my job.  My life.  Not that we have to take it wholly as a good thing.  Sometimes an obsession with lustratio is tantamount to a refusal to live the time you have, a desire to just lay yourself on the reset button and flutter every few seconds back to square one.  Not so healthy.

We have to review ourselves in these five hundred words of daily reflection, not just the things that have happened.

I will update the about me so that if new people come here, they will understand what has been happening – and not happening – but it is nice to feel like everything isn’t so partitioned anymore.  There’s a lot of content.  Not much of it useful or readable or whatever, but ca existe!

Also, he was present and kind today.  That helps.

It just feels like a bit of a breath of life.  A moment of positivity.

Butterscotch Pudding

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Can we just take a moment and freak out about the fact that this is Christmas and I feel….good?
Not perfect, not over the gap, not resolved, not illuminated.  Just good.  As though I woke up and it’s morning and there’s a day full of things to do.  That I want to do and look forward to trying.  I can, even if there are still upsets and hurts and wibbly-wobbly strangleholds in my mind, enjoy some of this.  Enjoy it imperfectly.  I’m not offended by my own merriness or desires to create.
Next year…I am committing to no soda and no Chipotle/Qdoba/Giant Stuffed Burrito restaurant situations.  365 days of it.  Start to finish, no days off. If nothing else, if I fail at any and all diet attempts, if I lose my mind on booze and quadruple burger pies or whatever…I think this will make a difference in the way I think and feel.  A restriction that I think I can both survive and will force me to remember I can make my own food – and if I can make it, I can make it fit within those diets I’m planning.   I don’t know. I didn’t think I could post like this.  I can.  It’s easy.  I prioritized it.  It isn’t rocket science, as one probably no longer says.
I attempt during this time of year to look at the framework, the inner workings, the big ideas.  And I know that things have got to give, more than that, they’ve got to give way for new possiblities come through.  I’ve got to give up the word thing.  It’s nonsense.  It is void of meaning and it obscures my purpose which is to wield the ever-sharpening blade of specificity.  To say what the parts and pieces, the very atoms of the universe contain.  To describe the indescribable emotions and tremulous shockwaves that are generated from existing in this universe.  To make the unknowable, not known, but named so it can be reached for as we need it, it can be drawn down like the moon and befriended in our darkest hours.  Telling you things is things can feel accurate, but things will be things tomorrow and the day after.  The odd sensation of stymied nostalgia I feel as I sit, lit by my laptop screen and reflections on the windows of the same, in my old, un-painted childhood bedroom waiting for my mother to leave for a graveyard shift at the retail establishment that’s employed her since time immemorial.  That awareness that we are too old to make any demands, we are too young to do anything but listen as the world is described as collapsing, and that the joys of a warm bed feel a more profound covenant than any of the powerful intoxicants of food and drink and celebration.  The way I feel settled on the edge of aloneliness, between where one can be brave and alive on one’s own and where and where one can be little more than a shape that surrounds an ache.  That either path feels true to the day, to my sense of truth, to what the season seems to be asking for me.
Where is the word for just that?

Sick Meta

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Okay, since things are suddenly spiralling in a really shit way, here’s the plan.  I am, for some damn reason, feeling really awful.  Like sick.  I don’t know if it’s from listening to people at the office talk about strep throat, but I have something going on.  I’ve got a headache, feel like puking and my throat is starting to feel sore.  This sucks and frankly, I’m not all that happy about having to sit upright and compose anything for the universe to read.

I want to lay down here in this bed and die.

….

So I didn’t post.  Nor die.  Sorry.  The devil on my shoulder justified not doing it and I didn’t.  Mainly because my plan was just to try and write five hundred random words and press post.  That doesn’t seem to help anything for anyone.  It just is petulance and drama at that point.  As I was staring at the porcelain fount and considering making an, ahem, offering, I said what the hell does anyone care?  They don’t.  But they do.  But they don’t care so much that I can’t do two posts today and live much the same as if I’d posted some crap last night when my head was about to explode.  I don’t have the old guy who stopped in every now and again at my desk and asked me if I did my 500 words anymore.  And fuck him, if he won’t forgive me a day of inactivity.  Having slept I actually remember the word inactivity.  Self-care trumped everyone’s esteem of me which…if it’s based totally on whether or not I press post everyday, that’s too depressing to think about.

Obviously, I do feel much better, stomach-wise and mostly headache-wise.  Throat a little scratchier and more desperate than before, but what the heck…I guess I feel talky in my fingertips rather than my mouth.  I feel well enough to urgently rush online and explain the happenings with my body (and play Dragon Age, but never mind that) so I must feel better.  That’s my measurement, I guess.

Not that I suddenly have the Great American Blog Post rattling around in my brain to give you today, either.  Not here and probably not when I post again tonight.  Mostly, I’ve been playing my video game, avoiding my friends because I don’t want to get spoilers for the game, feeling fretful and nervous towards generalized nothingness I can’t articulate, thinking about boys on the internet, eating this, that or the other, successfully surviving what may have been a ranch-dressing based food poisoning, and refusing to leave the house.  Today may have a bit more cleaning and laying in bed staring at the ceiling in it, but I expect today to be much the same.

Successful Cat Lady Score: +5

It’s what I wanted, the antidote, the reversal of all those weekends where I rush to work and feel my blood pressure skyrocket and feel lonely as hell that way.  Here, we have the internet, we have music as loud as we want, we have the ability to just close our eyes and lay down when it gets to be too much.

This is a blessing.  It has its downside, but it is a blessing.

Confit

WordPress, hey there, looking nice and snazzy.

Jack and Miranda and Adrian will be buffed up and looking better themselves,  if any of them actually have a moral leg to stand on and preen in front of a mirror.  Eventually.  Can’t get too caught up in the wrongness of how that scene played out yesterday because that’ll keep me from doing what I need to do: building bones and letting these clothes hang over them before, in the end, doing the critical work of getting some flesh between the buttons and the breastbone.

If you take my meaning.  Right now, I’m reverting to the tried and true method of just standing on the edge of the post and pissing into the wind.  Maybe not a genius move for a girl, a short girl besides, but I never claimed to be a genius.

It’s perhaps an opportunity to review the space and be a bit meta about this process.  I’ve become almost a bit inured to its charms and woes and done it because it has to be done, a cow that needs milking and only cruelty would allow me to ignore its discomfited moos.  Moos?   At any rate, what I’m taking about is daily blogging.  And like everything else I do and experience and write about, it has its cycles.  Some days I come to this page completely raw and anguished and frustrated and I can leave at least the frothiest part of the shitshake here – get it out of my head.  Others, it feels so rote and blase and repetitious that  I think I should just, arbitrarily, stop.  I’ve thought about next year only posting once a week – even going so far as to contemplate an epic weekly 3,500 word post that would allow me to cover everything and not feel as though I have to give certain topics short shrift because it’s running on midnight and I have to go to bed because I’ve got an early day at work and I just need to press that post button and be done.  But I think that’s a recipe for disaster because come Sunday night, I”ll rarely find the verve required to complete that post and eventually the whole scaffolding will come down around my ears.  The other alternative is a weekly 500 word post – but that’s equally unfair and unworthy.

Besides which, as obnoxious to read in sequence (or at random) as it must be, I just am so glad it’s an outlet available to me.  I think it’s made so much possible, and having this personal archive has brought me back to task quicker than I might have expected and it’s made me aware of my wit and pettiness in equal measure.

It’s a good thing.

I’m dealing with some image shit right now and anger about not being able to maintain change.  Regrets.  But I’m lucky.  I cannot forget that.  I am freer than most.

So we’ll continue on, hoping to learn and be better than the day before and that the anger which pulls down on us is as ephemeral as a Colorado rainstorm.

Indulgences

After the storm of sorts.

I am feeling infinitely better than yesterday.  Yesterday was not a particularly amazing or good day for me, so I suppose today had a wide berth to end up tolerable.  It did.  I did.

Things I figured out today:

I don’t really like Qdoba.  If I’m going to have a big, ricey, beany, gloppy burrito, I should have something I like, like Chipotle and for the time being, I don’t like any of it.  I just find Qdoba sorta extra dry and salty, somehow.  Extra gloppy.  An imposter perfume.  Of course, hindsight’s 20/20 and I never can tell how little I care for something until after I eat it.  But this is a fairly consistent reaction.

Tonight for dinner: little hamburger sliders, carrots, grapes, and some lemonade and maybe some sugar-free pudding.  Nobody’s calling it health food, but maybe that helps.  What feels good about it is that I made it myself at my house.  I was considering when it was exactly that I got so fucked up about food.  I’m sure it had something to do with my mom going back to work and we were alone in the house a lot of the time, and re-cemented in my head when she got sick and puberty had its way with me.  Food was and is omnipresent.  It’s necessary.  It can’t deny you or react in anyway to you other than complete acceptance.  And people were not really accepting me all that well then, which I was struggling to understand.  How there were groups of kids that you couldn’t belong to and they were doing things with each other and they were really excited by their lives.  My being excited by my stories and the things I was reading was not something I knew how to express to these people.  And the whole cycle of having cans of frosting or cake mixes and hiding them beside my bed (which was terrible and bizarre) was only terrible to me in my guilt that I would get in trouble for it.  Not because, hey, you don’t need to eat that.

I was alone, felt alone, and eating really massive amounts of terrible food every so often made me feel like I was satisfying or short-circuiting all these emotions and all this stuff happening around me.  That if there was a problem, I was fixing it, though after a while the reasons became really vague and obscure and the distance between the want arising and the need to answer the want immediately and with complete fanaticism was almost indivisible.   Jokes about being tubbier and my inherent shyness added to it.  That sense that I was weird.  Really weird.  Not just movie weird, but in some way socially broken, didn’t help.  And for a long time, still, really, I take pride in being on that other wavelength.  I wasn’t like a hipster.  I wasn’t doing anything and what I wasn’t doing, nobody was watching.  Reading Christopher Durang plays in the library for hours, waiting for a ride home, writing (sometimes), my few junior high friendships dissolving for reasons I never understood, nursing a Dr. Pepper, thinking about people as though they were conceptual, feeling funny and generally good but that everything that my classmates were experiencing was coming to me.  Just later.  When I had properly earned it or when they got down the special jar of futures.  It was ego, but I didn’t see it that way.  And food was just the way the days passed.   Meals marked time.  Snacks helped the time between meals speed up.  Whatever impulse I might have had to speak out about what I wanted or needed or my anxiety, food took care of that at the same time.  And then all of a sudden, this was my thing.   Not reading or creating or using my intelligence, just consuming and planning consumption.  Bitterness and joy and every emotional hangnail.  Until, random realization that this is my life: unacceptable, I want love and marriage and moving out and writing and happiness and not this one box staring down at a computer and a plate which leads to a random thrust towards not eating like a maniac, end up eating 10x worse.

It just…you want to say, well, don’t do that anymore.  And so far, that’s the only advice I know that works.  See what you don’t like and don’t do that any more.  See what you like and do that.  Don’t ever let it come back and don’t ever give it up.

So I asked myself when it was that I felt like I was eating healthfully and well and didn’t have these compulsions to eat outside of meal time, to gorge, to go nutty over food in an obsessive sort of way.  And obviously, it was way back when I had no say in what I was eating.  When I had breakfast provided, lunch served, dinner a great surprise and delight and we’d run outside and play again maybe we’d have a bit of popcorn before bed.

So here’s the plan at the moment.  Buy vegetables.  Make meals.  Eat them.  Go take a walk (we took a nice one today) and track it on SparkPeople.  Track the food, too, and water.  And let the tension go.  I’ve worked hard today, cleaning and getting rid of old things that used to mean things, but don’t anymore.  Old clippings about the Goo Goo Dolls, a whole tray full of random makeup, lots of strange papers I held onto as if I was someday going to back and take notes on my education.   Did tons of laundry.  Still tons more to do.

Self-care.  When you’re unable to do it, you just need to do it.  When you reject it, that’s when you have to do it.  You have to destroy any other option but stopping the processes that seem inherent and saying HEY! What do I really need and want not just right now, but tomorrow and later on and if I want a clean, restful house (I do.) and if I want to get over my driving phobia (I do.)  and if I want someone who will find all of this both silly and loveable and as important as I do (I do.),  I cannot play computer games and eat burritos and complain.

If these are my goals, I either work towards them or I don’t and I give them up.

I don’t want to be given up on, so goals, let’s just go.

At Kitty Hawk: Day 25

I am not flying, but I have the idea of doing it.  I’ve got a sketch and some paper-thin skins and a great, gaping cliff.  Just need that warm wind and we’ll make like Icarus, baby.  Straight for the sun and the other side.

The windchimes have found a cool wind, chilled by the clouds that have been above our heads all day and only broke apart around dusk.  There’s that little waterless tide sound of air moving through the evergreen needles and drawn forward and back by the movement of cars.   A sound, perhaps not entirely of peace, but peaceful.  It subdues.  It feels like it should be Friday and tomorrow should involve luxuriating in bed and lazing about, daydreaming and sketching out bigger and bigger pictures.  It is not, though.  We are verging on Friday, but it is going to be a Friday of madness and pre-event preparation and not being very thoughtful.

But I have to think positive.  Today should have been the beginning of the cascade, the beginning of the end.  And it wasn’t.  It’s been nearly a month without substantive carbohydrate eating and I don’t feel frustrated or self-abused by the deprivation.  My energy is not woefully low, not beyond what I think could conceivably be caused by working 10-12 hour days, sleeping poorly, needing more water and more consistency with the vitamins.  I didn’t mean to write this post as a state of the union, but if that’s what it is, I am…not bad.  I definitely feel the drive to get to the 15th without attaching my face to some sourdough or dry humping a pizza box.   I can get at least that far.  I’m naturally concerned about life post-concert, though.  I will have lost 11 pounds at that point, providing all the provisos of not wigging out and binging between now and then, and that’s a pretty good place for me.  A pretty good place for me, though, too, to lose my fucking mind and regain.  One goal done, I know that I have to keep going…not in a deranged, I can never stop dieting sort of way, just…that I am actively moving in the direction of my dreams and instead of being overwhelmed by the fact that they are in some way  (not that my weight is really in any way a major component of my dreams for my future, surprisingly) coming true, I have to dig in and do more.

Make a goal too big, you give up before you get there.

Make it too small and you don’t think you’re accomplishing anything.  This has been a good goal, with lots of positive reinforcement and I will keep being here and sharing it with the shadows on the wall.

Also, nice things.  Got a glowing public approbation from a board member for my boss and myself.  Almost made me cry.  A lady also complimented my victory rolls which really could be a lot better, but I was super cute today despite wearing too short a skirt and being, ashamedly, imperfect.

What is wrong we will make right, or, if we can’t make it right, we’ll make it better.

Today: 156.4 (I hold no stock in this number, I ended up there after several attempts launching myself upon the terrible cruelties of the Taylor brand scale.)
Yesterday: 157.4
Started:166
Goal: 155 by June 15

Chatty Heracles: Day 18

I am being quite good.  I think.   One is never entirely sure if you’re just gleefully marching along, grasshoppering your existence as summer begins to blush and ripen like a Palisade peach, if just around the corner or just off to the left is a great and grievous edge that you are about to slide the fuck into.  Whistling all the way, no doubt.  I think believing this ever-vigilantly is a northern trait. A Stark-like observance of the changing of the weather, of the guard, of risk and loss nipping at your heels. Or maybe just a human paranoia that once you allow yourself to give into, it is hell to give up.

I am considering the Black Widow DVD.  We walked a ways today.  I want to do it.  I need to do it.  But I am sore and creaky from yesterday.  So.  I will do it, if only because I understand that my goals require work and not just psychic insistence that they will work.  I believe in the witchcraft of the will, but I believe it works faster and better and with fewer questionable results if you add in some bodily effort.

So, fifteen minutes from now, I will be making nice with the Widow and letting her tell me she’s going to break me down or whatever the fuck it is she says.  Such a one-eighty from Denise Austin who you could probably break off chunks of and use it like sweaty carob to sweeten your cookies.  She basically chirps and squeaks and hauls herself oddly around in Caribbean settings and you watch her and wonder if this is all she hoped her life would be.  Jillian Michaels is awkward, too, in her own YOU KNOW ME FROM TV SO I’M GOING TO GIVE YOU MY TV HARDASS WITH GOOD INTENTIONS PERSONA FULL-BORE kind of way.  Really just a different stroke from a different folk.

So this means that there can’t be further dilly-dallying and staring at banjo players in lewd and lascivious manners via the internet, and there certainly can’t be any bullshit going on about here.  Straight-forward and to the point, my lads and lasses.

Today:  I need to eat something other than chicken.  I am just slowly becoming some sort of processed meat paste nugget.  Um, no.  Not really, but I did well.  I didn’t do anything that upset myself or made me feel overtly fail-y.  Even with all the pre-event bullshit and drama and emotional upheaval that is nearly every day at my job.  While I’m drained and over it and the usual situation, I don’t feel any intense feeling of needing to sort of eat it better as it were.   There’s hardly enough time to get three meals in as it is!   There’s that drop-off.  Could be that tomorrow’s the day we give it all up and run headlong into a tinfoiled burrito fantasia.

Have to allow for the possibility.

But I’m alright.  I burn in other ways now.  For other things.

Today: 158.6

Yesterday: 160
Goal: 155 by June 15