Spring Cleaning with the KonMarie Method

For spring cleaning this year, I have started reading the book “the life-changing magic of tidying up” by Marie Kondo.   It’s a book about, well, tidying.  For me this time of year is for cleaning, which normally means lots of scrubbing and washing everything I can get my hands on, pulling out the stove and scrubbing under it, climbing on top of things and cleaning the places no one ever sees.  There are a few problems with that method this year. Since my injury, I have some pretty big physical limitations that I didn’t have last time I did spring cleaning, with no husband or roommates there is no one to help and due to of having a more than full-time job I have less time than I normally do.  The other reason I’m doing the KonMarie method instead of my normal method is that she is promising lifelong tidiness.  While my normal method sure does make everything clean for a while, it doesn’t make things more “tidy” long term.  It doesn’t make cleaning for the rest of the year easier.  It doesn’t actually make my house all that much more pleasing.   Also, I love the word “Tidy”, it has always been one of my favorite words.  TIDY, TIDY, TIDY!!!

life-changing-magic-of-tidying-up-2The idea behind this method is that you go through everything you own and get rid of the things that don’t bring you joy.  Then you organize and arrange the remaining things in a reasonable and pleasing way.

This is also the perfect time for me to start on this method because it takes about 6 months and I moved in about 6 months.  The KonMarie method will be a great pre-moving event.  I can pair down my possession and pack up the things I am keeping at the same time.  My friends Issa and Lee got a ton of boxes to me on Imbolc to start packing things.   I started reading the book the evening after the Imbolc ritual.

The first step of the KonMarie process is figuring out why you want to tidy.  “I want a clean house”  or “I want to be able to entertain without feeling too stressed to clean” isn’t enough.  You must ask yourself lots of questions to get to the root of what it is you really want from your space and why.   I have come up with two answers after several days of thinking about it.

  1. I want to live in a home that is classy and fun.  I want my guests to walk into my home and feel ease and joy, but I also want them to think “wow, this place is clean, smells nice and is pleasing, Everything I see is of high quality, and reflects Kitty’s personality.  Kitty must be doing very well for herself financially and emotionally”

Why do I want this?

Well, when I was a kid I was very poor.  When I was little we lived in a shitty single wide trailer without running water in coal country of Pennsylvania.  It was cold and dirty there, broken down cars and a moldy shack littered what might have been a very lovely woodland clearing. Everything was always covered in black coal dust and smoke.  When I was 7 my mother left my father and we moved someplace that I thought was like a palace.   We lived in a brand new double wide!  With a garden tub!  But looking back I know we were still poor.

As a child, I got teased for wearing used and ugly clothes.  I was often brought to tears because the other kids said I smelled bad, which now actually seems petty unlikely, I showered every day and my mother was a bit of a clean freak, but also a smoker so I don’t know, maybe I did smell bad.  I guess I’ll never know.  Once I realized how poor we were I wanted to never be poor again, I felt angry and ashamed that we were poor while so many other people were rich.  This started me having a lot of self-hatred and anger about poverty, but that is another post.  Anyway, I didn’t want to be poor and wanted to change that.  I now know this isn’t something you have a ton of control over, but I have done what I could.

I think I had just about reached “middle class” financially before my husband left me last year.  But I never felt like it while with him.  When we were doing things with his job I felt like I was super rich.  We stayed in nice hotels, we went to cool places, I met important people and ate fancy foods.  All of that was awesome, during those times I felt happy and important like my life was going the right direction, like I could do great things. During those times I got a little overconfident about being someone important myself someday, like a writer. All that opulence made me work hard and being someone great.    But at home we lived in a house that was a mess inside and out, that was full of cheap shit and clutter no matter how hard I tried to fight that.   Living here I have felt like sometimes all I do is clean, working 10 hours a day at cleaning to still wake up to filth.  Yes, I get that there are some emotional issue and compulsive disorder things going to be dealt with there.

My ex-husband had many good qualities, but wanting a clean and classy home was not among them.  He grew up nearly as poor as I, but with a family that was less concerned with cleanliness, quality and what other people thought about them, which my mother was obsessed with.   He is the type of person who doesn’t mind living in a house that needs painting, who doesn’t rush to clean up trash in the yard or tidy the house. And that is ok, not everyone takes joy from the same things.  I, however, take joy in a clean home and yard and in being able to entertain guests.

He is gone now which makes me sometimes feel totally broken with sadness even after so many months, sometimes super angry, but increasingly zen I guess.  He left me, he had his reasons, that sucks.  But it is in the past and I had no control over it happening.  It wasn’t my fault he left,  but picking up the pieces is my responsibility.   I have to deal with that shit and move on.

I am still living in “our” house, but soon for the first time in my life, I will be living in “my” house.  A place that is 100% mine.  A place that will reflect only my personality and values.  I value quality.  I value joy, art, and beauty.  I value cute things, colorful things, and stupidly adorable things!

I’m not wealthy now, I’m not even middle class with just my income (about $25,000 a year if I keep doing well).  But, I would rather have a few nice things than many shitty things. I will be getting rid of all the low-quality and joyless things before or when I leave.  This part of my life, this home is dead and needs to left alone to decay.

My new home will merge the aesthetic of a fancy spa and a candy store. There will be many candles and fresh flowers, cute candy jars for art reasons, pastel furniture, lots of bright white filigree, antique china, stuffed animals and doilies.   It will be glorious,  like Honeyduke’s from Harry Potter if managed by a Jess from “New Girl” and owned by Jackie O.

  1. I want my home to be a place where I can feel free to relax, engage in any activity or work on any project of my choosing when I am alone.

What does this mean?

20180212_141516_Film4To my left as I type this I have my piano keyboard.  It is covered in mail, clothing and dust.  I want to play the piano at least a few times a week, but I can’t because of effort and guilt.  It would take time to clean all the stuff off and put it all away and once I started cleaning I would probably just keep cleaning.  If I did stop and try to play the piano I would feel guilty, because for me playing the piano is something you do in a clean house.  Knitting is something you do in a clean house.  Coloring is something you do when you have done all your chores.  Even reading or being able to relax while watching T.V or taking a bubble bath is for people who are done with tasks for the day.   I can only let go and truly enjoy my inside hobbies when my space is clean, but because I don’t have a great system my space is seldom clean enough for me to relax.   I have tried to take all the things I want to do off the “for a good Kitty only list” but after years of trying I have decided to give up on that, and instead find a way to feel like a good Kitty.

I theorize that If I can get things in order,  only having to tidy for 15 minutes a day then I will have more deserved free time to do the things that matter to me.  I guess we will see if that’s true.

With these two very introspective, complex and personal reasons to tidy my home I feel confident that I can get this done.  I’ve already made a list of 80 categories that I need to evaluate, pare down and organize.

20180211_152203_Film4I have done the method for two categories so far:

  • from 24 to 18 blankets, throws and duvets
  • from 44 to 31 types of tea.

 

I will try to post here as I work on this so you can see my progress.

Imbolc

I did a ritual at my house this past weekend.  I had reservations about doing Imbolc, or doing it at “home” anyway.  This isn’t my home anymore, or at least it’s becoming not my home.  I’m trying to emotionally distance myself from it, to make having to leave my home of over a decade hurt less, but in the end, I decided that since I am still here, it is still my home.  The place I live is the only place to do Imbolc.  So, that decided, I invited my friend’s over and did ritual.

The main thing I do every year on Imbolc is get ready to clean.  I buy any cleaning supplies I am low on, I get a new broom and bless it, I start my spring cleaning.  I did all those things, going to target the day before and getting new dishcloths, a spray bottle, so many great smelling candles and other supplies.  I spent the morning of the ritual making the ritual space clean, renovating the fire pit and trying to dry out the wood a little after all rain.  I went to Lowe’s and got a few supplies for the working as well. IMG_20180204_162102

Once my friends had arrived we did a short, fun and casual ritual.  Wine was drunk, cookies were eaten.  The new broom was blessed (which I must admit a new broom feels pretty wasteful since I can’t really take it with me when I move in 5 months).  We planted flowers in little clay pots and talked about the things we want to “grow” in our lives this year.  It was a nice afternoon, full of friendship, laughter, and love.

We went to my favorite sushi place, Kura Revolving Sushi Bar, for dinner after.   https://www.yelp.com/biz/kura-revolving-sushi-bar-doraville-2

It was a nice day.  A good way to start the transition from winter to spring.

The next day I started cleaning, but in a totally not actually having done any cleaning yet sort of way.  I will explain that in my next post! 20180207_232231_Film4 (1)

First Rays

This year’s solstice was amazing! I watched the first sunrise of the new solar year over the ocean!

burn 2017This was something I had been wanting to do for years but it never happened for lots of reasons, like money, other people’s interest level, and my own motivation to make it happen.  This year, however, I wanted it bad enough to declare that I was doing it even if I had to drive up by myself and sleep in my car. Someone who cares about me paid for everything as a Yule gift, because even though I’m working I’m not in a good financial place yet.

I had to work Thursday, December 21st until 7 pm, which was several hours after sunset.  That presented a little bit of a problem, but I was able to take a short break around 5:30 pm (thank the Kitty Goddess for work at home jobs!) to light last year on fire in my ritual area.  I lit a yellow candle with the last of the sparks of 2017.20171221_171710_Film4

As soon as work was done I gathered my things, made the candle as safe as possible in the car and started the 5-hour drive to the coast.

It was a long drive.  We talked as much as we could, we listened to some of Terry Pratchett’s “Hogfather”.  The first few hours were ok, but on the dark, empty country roads around 1 a.m, the night started to feel pretty creepy.  We were definitely in the slasher movie zone.  That neon red smiling “Piggly Wiggly” sign is not a friendly sight on Darkest Night in “I don’t remember where” South Carolina.

Once back on the highway everything took on a real dreamlike feel, good thing I wasn’t the one driving. Thankfully we made it to the hotel around 2 am. As soon as I opened the car door I could hear the ocean, but not see it. The air felt more humid and smelled of the sea. The plan had been to set up most things in the hotel room and only go down to the beach for the sunrise.  Oddly enough, no one was in the lobby, so we couldn’t check into our room. Plans change.

We took ourselves and the magical sun holding candle to waffle house for about an hour.  I ate hash browns covered in cheese and sang pop songs,  maybe this should be a new dark night tradition.  After that we drove around the old fancy parts of Charlson, the only car around, looking at the gaslights, French accents and the tastefully extravagant Christmas decorations on the ridiculously expensive mansions.

Dark beachAround 4 am we went back to the beach, parked in the garage under the hotel we were booked at, the only one on Island of Palms.  I changed into my ritual dress in the parking garage, got all the ritual supplies, mixed rum with a nice wassel from Trader Joe’s and made it to the beach a little before 5 am.  Which was barely on time surprisingly, given that sunrise was at 7:18 am.  The sky was totally dark to the east as I started to set up, but within minutes of getting there, I could see it lightning to grays and pinks.

 

I did most of the same general ritual steps I would use at home, but this was very different from previous years.  My normal Yule crew of the last 7 years or so wasn’t with me for one.  Erik, who normally does a runic divination for us and runs the bloat, which is the  “boast, oath and toast” part had moved to Massachusetts last spring,

So this year I read the tarot cards instead, just for me.  It was a quick reading and I didn’t get much out of it, but maybe I need to take some time to explore the reading further.  Lori wasn’t there because she was celebrating her anniversary of her secret wedding.  The other person who had been there for every Yule for the last 10 years isn’t part of my world anymore.  It didn’t make sense to invite anyone else this year.

It was just me and someone who is new to my life as of about 10 months ago, and who had never done Yule or maybe any pagan ritual.  Mostly he watched and took amazing pictures, but he joined in some.

We did boasts.  I’m proud of myself for how I managed to deal with the extremely bad injury that I suffered in March, damaging 3 tendons in my left leg and breaking two bones.  My friends were there for me and helped where they could, but mostly I did it on my own.  I learned to live alone, sleep alone, do my grocery shopping alone and function as an independent adult while in a wheelchair and on crutches. It was maybe the hardest, most badass thing I have ever done.  I’m down to just a brace now when I go out and I can deal with the pain.

We did oaths.  Going from running three times a week to being unable to even walk without assistance, plus the depression that I have been dealing with has meant I’ve gained almost 20 lbs in 9 months.  That is not good for my recovery, the extra weight is hard on my tendons.  And it’s not good for me emotionally.  I started losing the weight for a bad reason, to deal with an emotional trauma, but by the time I was running it was about me. About being strong, about owning my body, about pushing myself.  I’m probably never going to run again unless I’m being chased by something that wants to eat me, but that doesn’t mean I have to give up being strong, fit and happy in my body.  My oath was to get back down to the weight I was the day I broke my leg, 154 lbs.

We did toasts.  I toasted my companion.  10 months ago we were strangers.  Two weeks after our first date I broke my leg.  He has gotten to know me at probably the lowest point in my life, and yet he had been the most amazing friend I could ask for.  He has seen me at my very worst and chooses to stay.  It’s been an emotionally awakening to be around someone that good.

We drank, at each phase.  And maybe I drank between phases.

As the sky turned pink, I wrote down things I wanted to give up on tissue paper and watched them burn before hitting the sand.   Drank a little for the passing of each of those.

I was silly excited as the sky lightened to almost daylight brightness but the clock said we were still 10 minutes from sunrise.

I was holding my breath, staring at the lighted area when in the time it takes to blink,  the sun was reborn.  Seeing that tiny, beautiful dark orange, burning sliver of life peeking over the water brought tears to my eyes, and not just because I dumb enough to stare at the sun.  That moment felt exactly the way I had imagine it would for all of these years.  The stress of planning it, the mad dash after work, the drive, the cold, the pain of my leg walking up to the beach, it was all worth it.  Maybe everything else was too, everything that finally brought me to this place, on this morning, for this miraculous moment.

I always joke about protecting the spark on the darkest night and bringing it back like to my friends on Facebook, and they said thank you. This year’s was the same in that regard. What was different was a stranger who was staying in the hotel saw what I was doing and came down at the end and told me it made her happy. I have always felt like I’m doing something, connecting to something on Yule night.   I know, of course, I don’t bring back the sun, but pretending I do gives me a nice easy goal to accomplish every year because I know that the sun will rise with or without me, that the earth turns whether I’m alive on it or not.  This last year, there were so many times when I almost wasn’t anymore.  There were so many moments when I didn’t want to feel any more pain when things were just too fucking hard.  There were so many days when I was just too damaged, hurting too much and so very alone.  There were so many days when I thought the darkness was going to last forever, but even the longest night has a dawn.  I’m so glad I got to see this one.

I lit three candles repenting virtues I want to focus on this year.    We did “maybe you never hunger” eating the cookies I made and sacrificing others.  We did “may you never thirst” drinking some more spicy, applish rum drink and pour some out for lots of reasons. I sat in the new light, unfiltered by houses, trees, other people and started my new planner for 2018. I swam in the ocean in late December and worked on my tan.

I felt happy, productive and a little tipsy. I get a lot done before lunchtime some days.  Which was a fabulous place btw, but restaurant reviews are a different post.

 

 

 

I made sure that the sun was reborn this year. A bright, beautiful one. Hopefully a good one.  You’re welcome. Most of these photos were taken by and belong to P. Travis.

Solstice Eve

Figuring out the right day for solstice this year was hard,  it could have gone either way.  It could have been December 20 going into December 21,  or December 21 going into December 22.   I decided since both nights are almost exactly the same length that I could pick the one the worked best for me.

I have a day job now, started a few months ago.  Taking two days off would have been difficult, but just one day I can manage.  I could have probably done it without taking a day off if I was doing the ritual the way I normally do,  staying up all night, tending a fire in my backyard ritual area.  However this year I’ve decided to do something I have been wanting to do for a decade.  I’m going to watch the first sunrise of the year from a beach on the east coast.   

I’m not going to have to find the perfect spot in my yard, where I can see around my neighbors houses to maybe possibly see the sun.  Even then, it is at least an hour after official sunrise before I get my first glimpse at the fresh new sun.   I’m not going to have to worry about what my neighbors think as I stand out in the front yard, holding a candle and singing the Beatles “Here Comes the Sun” at 7 a.m.  

This year, I’m going to see the sun the moment it comes up, I’ll see the first perfect rays hitting the water, I will be the first person touched by the sun. I’m so excited to be doing this!  

20171221_121421_Film4Today before work and during breaks I have been getting everything ready.  I made some neat sun swirl sugar cookies flavored with orange juice for the ritual tomorrow morning.  I have winter wassel and rum for libation.  I have a basket full of candles, tarot cards, tissue paper and pens.  I’m almost packed,  I even brought a bathing suit, because it’s supposed to be 65 degrees tomorrow!  

Last year my solstice night was horrible and lonely,  and this year has been hard.  Maybe those two things have nothing to do with each other, maybe they do.  Either way, I want to start this year right.  If I cry tonight, this time they will be tears of joy!

 

 

Goodbye 2017

The only way my celebrations make sense this time of the year is if I think of everything from solstice night to new year eve as one big festival.  

From Thanksgiving to now is a time for reflection, thinking of the things I’m thankful for, or the things that sucked.  It’s the time for going over mistakes and successes.   

Tomorrow starts my New Year.  I’m going to spend the whole night awake Thursday night, on the beach, waiting for the sun to rise.  That will be a quiet night, for thinking about the darkness, for wishing for the light.  With the dawn it is the New Year officially, but it’s a festival season.  From Solstice morning to calendar New Year’s  day is the Yule festival, with gift giving, putting together the new planner, overeating, visiting friends and family, making plans and resolutions and going to parties.  

With the end of the festival on New Year’s day is time to get busy and make things happen.  

 

I wrote a poem for 2017

I’m angry.
I get a few seconds of fuzzy innocence in the morning.
Safe, pain free, warm, purring
My first thought of the day is “mmmm…”
My second is “Fuck!”, as I remember who I am and when I am.

It’s 2017, I’m angry.

Most days I don’t cry.
Most days I don’t scream out in pain and fury.
Most days I calmly get up and pee, seething with rage.

I hate my ex as I brush my teeth.
I hate my house as I splash water on my face
I hate my age as I put on moisturizer.
I hate my fat as I get dressed
I hate my leg as I painfully clump down the stairs.

I eat too much for breakfast, sweet and decadent,I feel like this should make me happy
It doesn’t.

I drink 16 oz of water and take vitamins, fucking life affirmation or some shit.
Life sucks, being well be hydrated and full of expensive chemicals can’t make it worse.
At least I’m worth as much as my component parts.
You could have sold me for scrap instead of tossing me in a fucking landfill, your loss assholes.

I am so angry deep inside. Road rage level angry.
Fuck you up, find you and beat the shit out of you angry.

Instead I do PT, and imagine how someday I can be strong again. I can run again.

I ran a lot last year.

2016, I was ashamed.

I was ashamed because I was afraid to say no, so I ran to escape that failure.
I was ashamed because I was violated, my body didn’t belong to me. I tried to shrink until all the nasty parts were gone.
I imagined sexual assault lived in my fat, that it could be burned away.
Shrinking didn’t work.

I never got fast enough, small enough or far enough away to feel unashamed.
I drank a lot of tequila, that helped.

Oh well. I don’t feel ashamed now, I guess the fire of my hate is hot enough to burn away shame. Neat.

Enough about the past,
It’s 2017
I’m angry.

I knit angry, making beautiful beaded lace with breakup gift yarn.
I look calm, as I check my planner, mark off my tasks. If you were watching me you wouldn’t know my secret, like the Hulk, I’m always angry.

I’m angry as I read, angry watching tv, angry as I cook, angry scooping cat litter.
I’m angry while at work, angry while I drive, angry when I’m smiling, laughing, spending time with my friends.

I’m not angry in bangs and screams.
I’m not angry in explosions.
I’m not angry like a bomb.
Not angry like a man.

I’m angry like a woman. Who did her best and was never enough.

It’s the proper ladylike anger of an educated, responsible divorcee rebuilding her life.

I’m appropriately angry in the kitchen,
Slow , silent, scalding steam until the pot boils dry

In 2018 maybe everything will have burned away
I’ll be empty.
The heat will die and I’ll cool.
In 2018 I’ll be empty and clean.

Count Down to Dragon Con – 4 Days

I know I over extended myself on the cosplay this year.  I think I could have managed one really good costume,  but not three.  I’m afraid that all my cosplay will look unfinished and rushed.   Oh well, might as well just keep working at it and everything else, because if you have to be alive one might as well be doing things.

Today I worked on Imperator Furiosa’s crest belt.

20160829_124941I haven’t done much leather work,  it’s been a hobby I’ve tried to stay away from because it’s costly and I already have enough hobbies.  However a little bit of leather working was necessary.  Since this piece is supposed to look a bit rough I decided that I might as well give it a try myself instead of asking my leather-working buddies for help.  My first step was cutting out a rough circle of black leather and using a rotary punch to make lots of holes along the bottom.

20160829_131133After enough holes had been created I started cutting chain to attach. I thought that her belt crest only had one type of chain, but I was wrong.  It is mostly silver/chrome colored and off a similar design to what I got a few days ago at the craft store, but there are a few different types thrown in. I had a gold look chain in my supplies, but I would like a few other types.  I’ll see what I can find tomorrow.

20160829_141015Polymer clay is always not one of my hobbies. Sculpting is something I’ve never had a knack for and to be honest I really sort of hate doing it.  I don’t like the feel of the clay against my fingers, I don’t like trying to shape it into the shapes I need.  I get easily frustrated working with clay.  I did the best I could and I came up with something similar to what Furiosa was wearing, but not very similar.  I’m hoping no one looks to close, and also that the flame points don’t break off.  But this is a pointless dream, I have never made anything of polymer clay that didn’t break.  One must accept impermanence, to do otherwise causes suffering.

20160830_003850

Some black and oil slick colored nail polish and a silver paint pin made it look a little better.  After cutting up a few belts I temperately attached everything with super glue and then started trying to sew it, using a big needle and waxed thread.  I had to stop before it was finished because my household is asleep and I feel an awl and mallet are needed to finish.

Hopefully I can finish this tomorrow before switching back over to the gin fairy.  Will I ever get back to working on Negasonic? Or is that one just not going to happen?

 

Dragon Con Countdown – 8 days

The Gin Fairy cosplay is coming together.   I spent a few hours today on the overdress.  I’m not much of a seamstress and I seldom make garments from scratch, but I’m pleased with how this is turning out.  I’m hoping to finish the overdress tomorrow and then decide if I have time for anything else on this one.  I love the sleeves! I might make several of this design in different fabrics just for these dramatic flouncy sleeves.

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Two blog posts in two days!  I’m a superhero!

Countdown to Dragon Con – 9

WTF!!!!!  OMG!!!!  OH NOZ!  

I’m over playing this for dramatic effect, as I’m actually not stressed yet.  Ok, I little stressed.  But not at all bad.

I have three new cosplays this year.  Which in hindsight might have been a tad ambitious, given that I’m not great at time management or finishing things.  Oh, what’s that?  Yes, I’m glad I pretended you asked that, I do have pictures of my progress so far.

Negasonic Teenage WarheadNegasonic-Deadpool20160823_175442

I’m specifically cosplaying her appearance in last year’s “Deadpool”.  She is so fucking emo!  I was in love with the look the second I saw her,  and in love with this version of the character just a few moments after she came on screen.   I have to be this character!

I guess you noticed, her head is shaved.  Yep,  I’m doing it.  Unless I freak out and can’t.   Nope, totally doing it.  Maybe….

`Imperator FuriosaSs-mad-max-fury-road-104

20160823_175823Two for the price of one on that head shaving thing.

Sorry about the super blurry picture.  She will be great to cosplay, if I can get  enough of the accessories done to make it work. I don’t even think I will get time to attempt the arm, not that I really have the skill set for that anyway, but I very much hope I can come up with something for the gear/skull belt.

I’m doing such badass characters this year, when normally I go for cute.  Maybe I’m finally growing up….

Gin Fairy

20160823_142043Seriously, don’t tell me you believed me for even a second on the growing up thing.  We are talking about my rather serious hobby of playing dress-up.  Of course, going to a fancy tea party is always in the cards for this sugary sweet lolita,  except this year the part of “tea” will be played by hard liquor and the “fancy party” will be a group of lovely ladies who want to be the anthropomorphic personification of their favorite booze.   Keeping it classy, bitches!

As you can see, not much done here yet.

I will post something new here every day until Dragon Con starts.  Mostly so I can stave off the guilt and shame that will descend upon me when I go to writer’s track sessions, where I will be forced to think about how very little I have written this past year.  I need the high of getting all pumped up listening to successful writers talk about their success, and being able to project that into my personal future for the coming year.  I can’t have the reality of my crippling self-doubt and rather epic ability to avoid work get in the way of my happy brain chemicals and delusions of grandeur.  When I hand out those business cards I will be able to say  “Oh, yes, there are so many posts on my blog, my own website isn’t wasted money at all, darling. I’m a professional”.  


Until tomorrow!

Reopened

Time doesn’t heal all wounds

it Closes them over, hides the blood and bone under crisscross scars,

it Fades badges of honor, camouflaged in soft sagging, aging skin.

Memories grow fuzzy as you rest on laurels, feeling proud of survival.

Time makes you Forget,

how to cope with the pain

how to endure.

You are Soft. Weak. Pathetic.

Back in the trenches your mind would explode under onslaught of bullets and bombs

Awwww….

you Weep alone, your delicate little feelings hurt by words.  Words? Really?

You should have stayed in Fighting form you know?

A siren wails….

You know what’s coming

Running out of time….

you hear the engines of then sneaking up on now….

Squealing, Screaming….

Sticks and Stones WILL break your bones.

I’ll give you something to Cry about.

Play Me?

It’s the middle of the night, and the sleepies are missing.   I went on Facebook to entertain myself until the sleepies returned from their break, but that was a bad idea.  All sorts of ideas jumped in before the sleepies got back. My brain is on overdrive, unable to shut off.

There are a lot of topics on my mind, like how the differences in being raised male vs. female in a patriarchal society can cause those raised male to romanticize the experience of being female.  I could write about trying to get back into journaling and how I want to use that to deal with issues that I’m not ready or at liberty to discuss online. I could discuss my recent failures and successes in sex, romance and polyamory. Or maybe a picture I saw of really yummy looking flan.

But you know I’m not going to talk about any of that.  Instead we are going to have another rousing game of “What the Fuck is Wrong with Kitty!?!?!”.

Wooooo, yay!!! The crowd goes wild!

I saw three things on Facebook that came together starting a long conversation with myself and necessitating this post.

Watch this video, we can call it media aid #1 before continuing:

https://www.facebook.com/Themightysite/videos?fref=photo

There was a time when I felt in control.  I had goals and plans spanning years at a time.  Every semester I could look at my lists and know exactly what classes I should take. I knew what I wanted to do with my life, from going to work the next day until I retired on to a farm decades later.  I thought of myself as an “Epicurean,” not in the sense of eating great foods, but in the classical way.  I wanted to work hard, stay focused, and have a life that maximized pleasure by minimizing pain.  It was working.

Things changed.  I changed.

From time to time I try to regain that sense of control.  I read a book on productivity, buy a day planner, join a peer motivation group or make detailed lists and schedules on my phone.  For a while it works, and I start getting things done. Generally the day-to-day stuff like cleaning and exercise get under control first.  Once I feel confident in that, I start letting myself read, write, work on fancy garden projects, try to reconnect with friends, date, get a job, or make income.  I start planning for a few weeks, a few months.  But it never sticks.

I don’t know why.

I have theories.  Is it that I’m too comfortable with my life? Am I afraid of change?  Is this anxiety a chronic disease that I can’t defeat? Do I just not care enough? None of these seem to be the right answer, let alone a solution.

The plans and goals I work hardest at, and the ones I am most likely to be successful at, are the ones that affect the people I love or need.  That brings us to media aid #2.manipulate

Am I a symbiotic parasite?  Perhaps I find people that fill a need in my life.  I then give them what they want: manual labor, money, sex, advice, support, etc.  This makes them stay and do whatever it is I needed.  Am I manipulating people into taking care of me?  Am I lying to myself if I say that I not?  Am I some monster that feeds off of others?  If people who care about me read this and say “no, of course not” is it because I am just that good at the symbiotic part? Is there anything genuine about me? Am I writing this because the parasite part thinks it will help me manipulate the foods?

There are things that I want to do for me.  I want to edit my first novel and publish it.  I want to make money and do awesome cosplay.  I like knitting, playing musical instruments, and dance.   These things always end up at the end of my to-do list, because I know I’m not going to do them and I don’t want them blocking projects I will accomplish. I’m not going to actively do anything that doesn’t benefit the hosts I feed upon.

I’ve tried to get around this by convincing my loved ones that my goals benefit them.   Some recent examples:

I actually said to my best friend, “If you make me do the work thing, I will give you $5 for everyday I make money.  You can get $150 a month just by bothering me!”

More subtly I have tried to get people who have or had an interest in me sexually engaged in the idea of me getting back into dance.  This is reasonable because it could lead to me being more flexible, thin and graceful, which could benefit them sexually or socially.

I have convinced my friend and publisher to call me once a week and shame me into working on a project for her in the hopes that this would motivate me to work on her project and my own.

I try every few days to get a friend or lover interested in my writing, so maybe they will want me to work on that.

Think about the fucked up that this is.  I try to make you love me, so that you might then be willing to give me permission to love myself.  This is going to have to go on near the top of the list on things that are most fucked up about Kitty.  Why can’t I cut out the middle man and just love myself?  It seems like it would take less time if nothing else.  

This brings us to media aid #3rpg

There was a time when my life was a first person RPG, super-open world format.  I could grind if I wanted to, I could take side quests, or I could choose any number of big plot arcs.  I could do anything that I planned out in my little gaming notebook.  

Anxiety has made my playable world smaller.  I worked so hard to level up as an accountant, but I can’t have an office job or that sort of responsibility.  I used to think about going back to school and picking another character class, but that’s likely to be as much of a failure as accounting was.  Every time I look around, the number of possible arcs decreases.

Recently I don’t feel like I’m the person playing anymore.  I feel more like the character, just standing there in a tavern waiting to be moved, directed.  That perhaps if a good player comes along at least I can finish this game in some respectable way.  Or I can be used to farm gold for a more important character.  I can keep being a changeable part of the game, keep having experiences, keep advancing.

I fear that option might close to me someday.  That I will turn into an NPC, conveying one piece of information or helping the important characters by accomplishing a single task.  What if someday I realize I’m just the tavern wench? What if being the tavern wench is all I can be, all I’m made for.  What if being the tavern wench is what I actually want?