Quote of the day...er...week...umm...hey, look, a quote!!

"...besides love, independence of thought is the greatest gift an adult can give a child." - Bryce Courtenay, The Power of One

For old quotes, look here.

Tuesday, October 27, 2015

Something to Ponder

I recently read a quote attributed to Buddha.  While I haven't researched it to see if he really did say it, it sounds like him.

It was something along the lines of it not mattering how compassionate one is towards others if one cannot also be compassionate toward one's self.

I've heard variations on this theme throughout my life - if one cannot love one's self, how can others love one, if one does not see one's own beauty, how can anyone else, if one cannot apply love, healing, compassion, or whatever to one's self then it is incomplete.

It is terribly difficult foe me to look at myself in the mirror, and it is equally difficult for me to see myself as having value.  So many messages incoming that tell me I don't measure up, so many times hearing that I am worthless and useless because I don't fit some mold, some idea or ideal of what a person should be, and after a while it really does drown out the smaller, quieter, kinder thoughts and truths.

I am pondering this idea that I deserve compassion, too.  I can't quite wrap my mind around it.  I have always said, and meant, that I don't matter.  My needs don't matter.  My wants don't matter.  That can't be healthy.

It's a strange thing, to try and put myself before others.  It feels selfish and wrong.

How do you do it?

Sunday, October 25, 2015

But Oh, Wouldn't It Be Lovely?


What one wants and what one needs may be two different things, but they sure can feel much alike.

That I need to find a way to move my family to a place less surrounded by hateful neighbors and overzealous law enforcement, a place perhaps quieter and more distant from the city, is a given in my family.

That I want to move closer to my mother and my friend A, out into the country, is also a given.

Those two things often get entangled.

And the truth is...

The truth is that my mother already pays my mortgage and most of my bills.  She buys clothing for my children and takes care of my medical expenses.  Hell, she even buys cat food most of the time because I cannot.

The truth is, I can never repay her for all that she does.

So getting a new place, moving out of this neighborhood and into the country, just isn't possible the way things stand now.

I can want in one hand and spit in the other, and I know which one will fill up first.

But I do want.

I do.

There's a place for sale, just went on the market last Friday, isn't even on the MLS yet.  The asking price is ambitious on the part of the seller and well beyond the best that I could offer (about $2.75 at the moment), and there is no way short of a lottery win that I can make it happen, but dammit, the wanting throbs into the feeling of need, and the need grinds away at me and won't let me be.

I cannot stop thinking about this house.  I haven't seen it, only heard a description from a friend who lives across the street.  I likely won't ever see it, because seeing it would just make the wanting worse, and why waste the time or energy taunting myself?

More and more of my life is there, near my mother.  My doctor, my new counselor (I found a place that provides psych services on a sliding scale) are a few minutes away.  Eventually, I will make it up there, away from here, far from the unpleasant neighbor who wishes me to live her way because only she knows how to live a right life.  For now I feel both sheltered and trapped here in Casa de Crazy.  It's a good house in a good place and I've no right to complain or wish for more than what we have.  I can't help it, though.

I'll feel this want until the house is sold and I have a few days of despair to muddle through because I hoped that a miracle would occur, maybe.

One can dream, and one can wish, and one can think how nice it would be, and life goes  on, but oh...

Saturday, October 17, 2015

...and Everything*

I am dealing with a few stressors in my life right now and am a bit on edge.

Ahem.  Excuse me while I smack spellcheck upside the head for telling me the "stressors" is not a word.

There's a general swarm of things that take turns nipping at me and keeping me on the run.**

And I've been a little sick for the past week.

It all adds up.

It feeds my depression and it fills up my Variety Plate, and sometimes it gets physical.

Which is how I explain what happened today.

I had a performance with the band today.  It was about a two-hour drive from home, so I opted to drive up this morning (can't afford a room and spending the night in the van with Sprout is a a great, big "NO!!!" with flashing lights, whistles, bells, and one of those twirly lights on top like the old-time police cars had).  I didn't have any breakfast because I wasn't hungry, but I did get a cup of coffee on the way.  We got there in good order and I helped a tiny bit with setting up the stage, then drank some water and ate a couple of Slim Jims and an apple.  Slim Jims are several food groups in one and chock full of preservatives and chemicals so they are health food.  Hush.  I'll have a fabulous carcass for a hundred years or more!  The apple was a lovely Honeycrisp, and completely faultless in the coming events.  I would like to note that I have eaten less and worse and eon more without coming to grief.

I finished getting my things arranged on stage, did sound check, and we launched into performance.

At first, I didn't notice anything amiss.

Then, the light.

Strangely bright, it crept into the edges of my vision and made the world a sort of flat negative of itself.  It grew brighter and bolder and sort of puddled and pooled into more of my field until everything seemed to be covered in a kind of glaring, molten white glaze.

I couldn't read the words on my lyrics pages, and eventually couldn't see the drum that was inches in front of me.

My hearing began to twist and get all knotted up, everything sort of throbby and fuzzy and far away.

I have felt this before, once, when I was pregnant with the Evil Genius and my appendix exploded and I passed out on the bathroom floor.

Not caring to thud onto the stage in a rather graceless lump of singer, or tumble off the front in a sad-seeming attempt at crowd surfing, I placed my hands on the edge of my drum and bent down as far as I could, sort of but not really getting my head between my knees.  It kinda helped, in a not-passing-out sort of way, but I was useless for singing or playing.

I stood back up and tried to keep going, but had to do the bend-over again.

Some kind person put a stool behind my arse and sort of shoved me to sit on it, which I did.

Still, the light, the sound, everything was all sideways and inside out and white and blinding and throbby and fuzzy.

Eventually I stood up and tried to be a more dynamic performer, but I felt something even more not right and finally...

I did something that I have never before done, not once, not in all my time performing, not when I was tired or sick or had foot and leg cramps, not when I was pregnant or anything - I left the stage.  I walked off, waving a fellow performer, a guest who was playing with us, to take my place at the microphone, got myself down the two step, and somehow made my way off behind the stage to a shady spot.  My vision cleared the tiniest bit.  A friend was there and asked if needed help.  I couldn't understand what he was saying despite his speaking clearly - my hearing was malfunctioning, my ears full of cotton and clay and distortion.  Finally I understood he was asking if I needed anything.  I asked him to hold my hat and not to worry, I'd be fine in a bit.  He was so sweet and obliging!

The nice old tree in front of me propped me up, and eventually was kind enough to let me lean on it and empty my innards.  Several times.

When I felt that last week's lunch was finished egressing, I went back to the stage, just in time to finish the set.

When we were done, I had to go find shade and sit for a very long time before I could pack my things and leave.  The light just wouldn't behave and time was all stretchy-like.  I had to ask a friend to look after my daughter because I couldn't.  I drank small sips of root beer and water and eventually felt well enough to get up and pack my gear, find Sprout, even get some lemonade and french fries (which were rather steadying, despite sounding like just exactly what one wouldn't need after such an episode).

Sprout and I drove home, and as the lemonade and fries and air conditioning in the van took hold, I felt much better.

When we got home I lay down and slept for three hours.  I would be sleeping, still, if the kids hadn't reminded me that in many homes, dinner is an actual thing and they'd like some, please and thank you.

Tomorrow I will simply rest.  I had other plans, but am loathe to endanger my child, myself, or anyone else going out into the world when I may have a repeat of today's episode.  Life will have to go on without me for a few days, and then I'll see how I feel about it, the Universe, and...well...Everything.

* this got long.  Sorry.  It does say "Everything" in the title, though.

**More about this later, no need to stretch out an already rather too long post.

Wednesday, October 14, 2015

I've Been A-Searchin'

Dear Google,

When I very carefully type words into your search field, it is safe to presume that those are the very qualities I am searching for in my, er, search.

For instance, if I should enter "Dark Blue Bunny Costume, Adult", then I am most likely looking for an adult sized rabbit costume, dark blue in color.

What it most certainly DOESN'T mean is that I want chickens, ducks, pirates, white or pink rabbits, or baby onesies (however cute they may be).

It most certainly DOESN'T mean I want models, toys, grey, brown, or purple costumes in children's sizes.

If I carefully, clearly type in that I wish to see BLUE bunny rabbit costumes in ADULT sizes, you can bet that I pretty much want to see just that and nothing more.  Not leopards.  Not penguins.  Not stuffed animals.  Not sexy ANYTHING.

I appreciate the marvels of the search engine and all of the fine tuning that goes into them, and I try very hard to be as specific as I can be, including using the ability to exclude certain terms to make the search more fine tunes.  Please, Google, don't waste my time and resources by INCLUDING the very things I EXCLUDED because why would you do that???


A Very Frustrated Mum Who Is Trying To Find Her Evil Genius the Costume He Desperately Wants for Halloween (or "Samhain" as it's called around here).

Monday, October 12, 2015

Lost In Translation

I don't know what it is that I need, only that I need something, some indefinable thing, some thing that will take away the empty loneliness and shine some light in the dark corners or at the very least offer a few drops of comfort to fill a void that has grown for so long it may never be entirely filled.

I'm not sure what makes the emptiness ache the way it does, but it aches and I can't seem to numb the pain with any conventional means, and unconventional means are not an option although I can understand how people turn to drugs or drink or sex or some other thing to distract or remove themselves from what's paining them even when that answer isn't real relief and doesn't do anything but mask what's there without ever really fixing.  So why's it called a fix, then?  Those things just make it worse, and I don't need worse, I need better.

Oh, I am restless and want to wander free, wild, alone, no children or cats or fish or Someone or mother or friends or anyone or anything who is part of the history of me that feels so awfully heavy right now.  I feel the gypsy part of my soul stirring, turning her face into the wind, smiling, yearning to hitch up her ponies and follow the swirling autumn leaves away, away, away, but I am not the gypsy, not entirely, only partially, and she's been chained for so long that I don't know, really, if she remembers how to wander, how to dance beneath the moon on a winter-cold night while the stars burn with their tiny ferocity and the dew freezes into frost crystal patterns finer than the fanciest etched glass in the greatest manor house.

Something akin to peace, quiet, rest, solitude, something like not being responsible for myself or for anyone else, something like not having to clean or cook or make a decision, something like sleeping in for days and days and swinging gently on a hammock and napping and sitting out in the dark counting stars and not hearing people or feeling anger or fear or hurt or all this tired.

How does one find what one cannot name?

Sunday, October 4, 2015

Without One, No Other

We never let the shadow swallow the light
Despite ourselves, we continue

To fight the desperate fight
Clinging with strong, bony fingers

And wiry strength
With all our might

We never let the light send the shadows away
Bright as it burns, we still seek shade
Hoping to make them stay
And help us sharpen
The glimmering hope
For which we pray

The one, the other

Each defining each
We between them twist and turn
Trying not to become lost
Trying not to burn