Stupid, Wonderful LIFE

No matter how drunk I have ever been, no matter how many times I’ve thrown up in that state, I never missed the toilet with my urine. Why is that?

I like the idea that I am actually a free-agent at work. Since the new reality in the USA is for low-to-mid level retail workers such as myself, part time work is the new reality , no matter how great you may be, I enjoy pretending that my 3-4 days off per week are my choice.

I enjoy perusing Craigslist for jobs that I am not qualified for. My overactive imagination allows me to picture myself doing the job, then the entire length of the career, and the interesting conclusion, without even ever applying!

I usually feel as though I don’t have any skills that are really vital or appreciated in society. This is the result of low confidence combined with feeling mostly ignored at large. According to “The Secret”, I am attracting being ignored, and any lack of talent and skill is simply a result of poor thinking. The law of the universe…I have been focusing on what I want- recognition and fat stacks. I am still focusing. Somebody help me out.

I feel young and old at the same time. I just turned 45. My sex drive is voracious, but my gray hairs are multiplying. Isn’t that strange? I guess my body is trying to maximize my few fertile remaining years to best production. But science tells me that my eggs are few and puny at this point. Plus, my tubes have been tied since age 26. So, the body isn’t all knowing after all.

I still have dreams, but sometimes I feel a large part of me is still 19, waiting for my life to begin, and not knowing where to start. I’ve never really had a HUGE dream that I clung to, that carried me all throughout my life. As things arose, I embraced them. Things I have always loved- dreaming, music, and feeling. Reading was my salvation as a child. I spent so much time in fiction, I guess I never came down to Earth much. When I finally did, I feel like everything had passed me by.

I was lost until age 19. Like most, I didn’t know I was lost until my life hit rock bottom. I asked a God I didn’t know to save my soul. Since then, I am still a sinner, still a crazy fool. Thank God for grace and forgiveness. I need it every day.

A look inside my head: If you didn’t know me, and if you didn’t think of me as the low carb blogger…

Mold me, shape me. I take on my environment and the people around me. I learned early to adapt to survive. It doesn’t mean I am not real. It just means that I only show you what I think you will approve of if I care about and respect you. If I don’t respect you, I feel free to show you all of what I am. For better or worse.

I should have been an actress. I used to think that becoming something I was not would be impossible. Now I realize that is how I operate my entire life.

I dream of things that cannot be as though they already are. I wonder if I am insane. I love my body and hate it , too. I embrace the light but play too much in the dark junk yard of my mind.

I am standing in a junk yard at night. You have a flashlight, but I don’t really need it. I don’t notice details that you do, and you don’t notice the poignant details that I do. You look for parts, I look for the stories behind the deployed air bag, the angle of the rear-view mirror and the tiny shards of stained glass that splatter the front seat. I see people, feel the resignation, feel the pain.

I was ten. I found a mattress in the dumpster. It was stained with many shades of blood and plasma. I felt the anguish, the sick, deep, dark hopelessness. I felt Hell and heaven and all the weight of the entire world upon my being. It soaked into my soul-my deepest perceptive senses were suddenly very acquainted with grief. In the instant that I stared, I absorbed a feeling that was not mine, but became mine. I owned this, but knew it not. Later, I was told that the mattress belonged to our upstairs neighbor. She shot herself in that bed.

I don’t know. What is it? I saw a photograph in the Time magazine when I was sixteen that showed the ovens where Jews were cooked. I saw the death camps. I didn’t actually SEE the photos as though they were a piece of history. My analytic mind was silenced. All I did was soak it in. I was revolted and horrified. Tears sprung to my eyes. I cannot tell you now that this was not just compassion and shock. But I KNOW it was much different than that. I was there. I FELT it. I can’t live in those places very long. I have to leave. I spend so much time trying to make a mark on the world, but I can never undo the mark it has left on me. I remember the day I learned about the potential of the nuclear bomb, the JFK assassination, and the 9-11 disaster. All I could do was hide in music, cry, and pray. I can tell you that I am not strong enough for the evil of this world. I can only call on Jesus. I can’t do it alone. The evil finger that occasionally reaches out to freeze and terrorize my heart can only be stopped by Him.

Life. The best things- love, selfless sacrifice, innocence of mind- the purity of music…the beauty of a smile. These things I cling to, but I never have felt, and never will feel, as though I fit into this world. I am a stranger here. As much as I am a part of this ancient Earth, and my body will return to it, I don’t really belong here. I have no real friends. I have family. I have people who love me. But, I never seem to get too close to many.

I inhaled the beautiful aroma I doused myself in. Shampoo, conditioner, soap, and perfume. I spent time carefully concealing dark spots on my face, red nose and chin, dark circles under my eyes. I spent more time scrunching my curls,plucking the grays, applying cellulite reduction cream, but the truth is never far from my mind, None of this matters. Not at all. This is just a shell. But this shell is perfectly designed to have me survive this planet. I have to keep it healthy. I fart. This ruins it all and makes reality even more important. I am really stinky inside. Gross.

On to more important things. The mind. What I think, I am . So I practice thinking beauty, health, love, and peace. These are among the most important things. I always believe that I am safe and secure. And so I am. Nothing threatens me.

Daily chores begin. I wash and fold. I sort and hang. I scrub and organize. But deep inside this productive feeling is a small child who doesn’t get any of it, the importance of it. That girl wants to spin, skip, and dance, and forget every ugly thing of this world. Then I go to work. I treat every person as if they are the most important person in the world. Sometimes I don’t feel they really are. I do it anyway.

I fear that everyone’s love is false. I don’t believe in flattery. Nobody is my age. I am older or younger than everyone. Nobody knows my age. Nobody knows ME.

I love smooth river rocks. I love dry river beds, and roaring white water. I love deep pools of clean, clear water. I love eyes that are full of light. I love proficiency and speed. I love brown, and blue, and green. I love deep red, the sunny blue sky, and ice cream.

I love my children. No matter how old they become, they are my children.

I love all that is right, good, and awesome. I hate my restless spirit.

I will write the great American novel…eventually. I know that the people I love also love me. That is enough Most all the time. I still am just a drifter, a dreamer, a wanderer, and schemer. Yet, I never want more for you than a sweet lullaby, or less than to feel the beauty of the sunrise, the warmth of the sun on your skin , and that you know- deep in your soul- that all the sweetness and love you find in others is just reflecting off your own magnificent and large heart.

I get depressed. Easily. I am an addictive personality. Pain makes me apologize. I love cats. I rely too much on feeling. I am an empath. I can be apathetic, but I hate living that way.

I will write more fiction and poetry soon. Hope to see you there.

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It’s Not Dieting- it’s about Self-Mastery

Taking myself too seriously has been a lifelong hobby of mine. Most importantly, I hate being a slave. But I have been a slave to many things. Cigarettes, sugar, and the tendency to go all or nothing with beer, with smoking when I did, and now with nicotine gum. I have always been this way. That’s why moderation scares me. I know it’s the right way, but it’s so much harder for me than all-or-nothing. At the end of the day, I want to be able to enjoy my food in moderation, and without restrictions. I want to be able to enjoy food, even pasta and bread, potatoes and Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups, but not to be obsessed with any of it. I do believe that I will achieve that goal, and the TRUE test of ‘self-mastery’ is to be able to partake of all that life has to offer (no, not illegal drugs, etc.,) without being possessed or controlled by the craving for it.

Why do we crave food when we aren’t hungry? Why does a junkie need a fix? More importantly, why do we have the need to escape?  Is this a reflection of our high-stress lives? The modern world? Could it be our own dysfunction that we can’t deal with? There are probably more questions than answers, but I subscribe to a simple theory that much of the dysfunction is just bad habit that’s been ingrained. We can learn new ways to respond to the challenges life throws at us. We can rise up, or we can suck lollipops. We can go to the gym, or we can go for the quick-endorphin producing bowl of ice cream. There’s nothing wrong with ice cream, eaten and enjoyed. The problem begins when ice cream, or any other thing, becomes our crutch, our reason for living. I have an inner glutton that will never be satisfied by any of the materials I try to stuff into myself. The hunger I am seeking to fill comes from learning to be content in the moment, without one more thing added. I have everything I need to lead a productive, happy life, already inside of me. Giving and receiving love, in all the many ways that manifests itself, comes right under having my “Maslov’s Hierarchy of Needs” met. Chocolate donuts are not necessary for my happiness.

Giving and receiving love. Releasing others from the perceived hurts and pains they have caused us, laughing with abandon, tossing away worry and fret- these are the freedom and peace bringers. Think about it, we all only have a brief span of years, in the grand scheme of things. If we are here to learn, serve, and love, there isn’t enough time for anger, worry, and numbing ourselves to our own ugliness and pain. It won’t work- the bowl of ice cream-to fix the buried memories of rejection, abuse, fears, pains, and loneliness. The meth won’t make us more productive at work, and the heroin won’t transport us to another, better reality. Beer buzzes don’t bring me to an enlightened state of being.

So, low-carb dieting is much more for me than fitting into smaller clothes, or looking better. It’s even more important than health, and feeling great. It’s truly about kicking false idols to the curb. I haven’t completed that journey, but at least I am on the road.

Trust and Love

This week it has been a struggle to believe that the people in my life who always act and behave as though they love me really do. I get this little voice in my head. It’s paranoid, insecure, and distrustful. I hate it. It’s the part of me that comes out to play during PMS week, under stress, and when I feel scared. No true evidence exists, and never does. Paranoia never needs evidence. Such is it’s nature. This passes, my mood will elevate, then something will set it off again. It compounds and escalates. If I am already brewing on some imaginary evils aimed toward me, believing ‘supporting’ ‘facts’ only deepens my conviction that there is indeed secret thoughts and feelings toward me which are negative. I start believing that I am not loved, wanted or needed. I hate this. It’s not about strangers and governmental conspiracy theories. It’s always about those closest to me. I don’t know why this happens, and I don’t know what to do about it, other than to continually fight these wrong, negative lies that my own insecure mind shoots up like stinking, thorny weeds. In my heart, you see, I know that I am loved. But the more I let these negative thoughts intrude, the more that could truly become more real. How comfortable can it be to live with me if I continually question the feelings and intentions of those who do truly love me and who I love? It must be hurtful. Combined with these feelings are the inherent traits of Scorpio jealousy and possessiveness- more insecure and unbecoming qualities. So I suffer with these things, and try not to make anyone else suffer. Meanwhile, I am lonely. I’ve never felt so ‘not a mom’ anymore. My kids have grown, and I miss them so much. Does anyone else relate to any of this? What do you think?

Probably Won’t be Read.

Hello. I want you to try to understand what it’s like to hear someone you love in misery, and not know what to do to help. I want you to put yourself in the place of a parent, who’s job it is to try to help their child, solve the problem, make everything better. You ache and grieve when  your child, however old, is hurting. You would do anything. Sometimes, it may seem that I am not listening, but I am. If I seem too focused on solutions instead of only sympathy, I apologize.

I don’t pretend to have all the answers, and I have not lived your life. It’s tempting, therefore, to think that I can’t understand, and cannot relate to what you’re going through. But what I feel is an anguished frustration. Love, moved to action- wants to bring healing.  If I could turn back time, and change things for you and smooth out your life, I would. Somehow, though, I don’t think that would solve everything.

If you think I don’t care, then you are not listening with your heart. You hear my words, but you don’t seem to know how I feel. You don’t know how much I worry, how many tears I’ve cried, how I hope against all your negativity and hopelessness, your apathy and pain. I hope to be able to bring you to someone who can help you and address your needs. In the end, though, it is you who has the hardest part to do. You simply have to decide you want things to change.

Don’t think I just jump into decisions about your life without thinking, or make choices for you without considering your thoughts and feelings. I also don’t believe that drugs are the answer- but they could be a great help.  They could make the difference in your life that will allow you to respond to counseling. So, sigh and chalk it all up to snap answers if you like, or that I don’t really care. That might be easier to believe. For whatever reason, maybe it’s easier for you to pretend I don’t care about your situation, than to take responsibility for some of it, and to move forward to get better.

My love for you is endless. Our connection began from the moment of your conception. As I carried you then, I long to carry you now, but there are limits to what I can do.  No matter what you choose to do in life, there are always those who will have something negative to say about it. If those people had any answers, perhaps they should offer them, or else remain quiet.

The Gift of Air: When “as easy as breathing” isn’t.

My mom has COPD. Lung issues such as this, directly linked to smoking, seem to be prevalent in my mother’s mother’s side of the family. Not content to learn from the the mistakes of others ,each generation of women have been smokers, myself included. I do not currently smoke, but I have a collective eight year’s worth of it in my lifetime. My mother continues to smoke, despite her COPD. She says it’s “all she has left”. I would like to remind her that it is NOT all ‘she has left’. She has adult daughters, grandchildren, and many things she could still do. She likes to remind me that the doctors have told her that even if she had quit five years ago, it wouldn’t help her condition. I like to think to myself, but I don’t tell her this, that I don’t really believe that. Also,  she seems to have enough energy to go outside on her porch to smoke several times a day and night, then proceeds to immediately need to use her nebulizer, and she certainly isn’t making things easier on herself by continuing. But my mother is stubborn to a fault and will never allow anyone to tell her what to do. Even a mild suggestion is usually met with defensiveness. Cross the line, and she will pretty much tell you that if you don’t like what she’s doing, you can just get lost. Even though I know she loves me, and she knows I love her, that’s the way she is.

It’s difficult watching her spend most of her days either on the sofa, or in bed now. She always has her oxygen hose on. She gave up her car, and I do her shopping and light cleaning. She doesn’t go anywhere now. She is 69. Today I plan to go to her house, do her shopping, put her stuff away and visit for a bit. I would really love to scrub the floors, vacuum, dust, etc., but she always stops me either due to the fumes in the air from the cleaners I might use, or the dust the vacuum kicks up. I have explained that our vacuum has a HEPA filter on it and doesn’t re-release dust back into the air. She doesn’t believe it. I can’t clean her commode for her with anything other than water or a chunk of bar soap, I guess,  because of bleach fumes. Her front loading clothes washer has a rubber gasket on it that collects a mildew smell. I have to use peroxide on that, bleach smells will choke her. I cannot wear any perfume, hair gels, body or hand lotion, etc to mom’s because she will ask what I have on that’s making it hard for her to breathe. I know she has become very sensitive to smell and fumes, but I also know that her condition itself is making it hard to breathe, and how can my hand lotion be an issue but cigarettes be seemingly just fine? I try not to stress over this stuff, though, because time with my mom may be all too short.

In the end, it won’t matter whether I got to dust her apartment or vacuum it enough. It’s just a bit frustrating. I guess I am just sad to see her like this.

Last night, a wind chime that had belonged to my sister Karen got bumped by my lowering of the blinds. The bell on the bottom fell off. It’s a brass bell, engraved with ‘good luck’. I took it as a bad omen and called my mom first thing this morning. It’s silly, I guess- but there’s always a generalized worry for her now. Acceptance has been hard for her most of all, which is easy to forget. I wished she had never accepted it. I wished she had quit smoking ten years ago, when she first found out she had a problem. Things would be better now. I wish she had fought it!

But, what can I do? I can only take care of her and love her and accept her as she is, even if I don’t like all of what she’s doing.

What I Love

I love my kids! I will never stop believing in all they are and what they can be. I love my husband. He amazes me daily with his thoughtfulness, generosity, easy-going nature, complete lack of judgmental attitude, and very loving heart. He is also fun to be around, and always makes me feel loved and important. I only hope I can be half as much to him as he is to me.

I love where I live. I love that we have this huge chunk of gorgeous Oregon, overlooking the river. I love how we get snow when others get rain. I love the privacy and quiet here, and I love that my husband is a bigger neat freak than I am. I have died and gone to Heaven- must be.

I love that the people I work with are all pretty cool, caring people who have professionalism combined with a sense of humor. Refreshing and very welcomed. They take their work seriously, but for the most part, not themselves.

I love that I have an opportunity to maybe, just maybe, get to do voice over work soon! I can’t wait! What a dream! I love that I have many people in my life who keep believing in me and my dreams.

I love my mom and my mother -in- law. They both are amazing women who I continually learn from and laugh with.

I love our pets, and the way they make everything seem normal, and cozy, and familiar. I love their unconditional love.

I love sunshine, flowers, and spending a day at a lakeside, where’s there’s no wind, just swimming and sunning. I love the feel of fresh, fluffy snow under my boots, and the clean white of it all. I love working toward a goal and knowing I am making progress. I love giving to others- even random strangers, hoping that somehow I have made one person’s life a little brighter. I love the peace and quiet of an afternoon nap on this huge bed we have, and waking up to see the sunset out the window, behind the ficus tree that I also love.

I love my daughter’s drive and enthusiasm, my stepkids sweet innocence and happiness, and the way the have always made me feel accepted. I love the smell of coffee in the morning, especially if I didn’t have to make it that day. 🙂

I love Kielly so much, for giving me this life- these opportunities, this great happiness. I never forget what he does for me, and who he is to me. I love you!