Acceptance, Volume II

Snow Acceptance

I seem to be continuing to struggle with acceptance.  I have an aversion to what IS.  I seem to prefer to flit off to never-never land and live in What I Would Like, What Might Be, What Could Be, or What Should Be.  I believe this may be impairing my ability to live in the NOW.  The Now is also equivalent to what IS.  Hmmm I am having a moment.  Here are some of the things that I am not accepting or acknowledging:  I do not accept snow in April.  I think it should be beautiful Spring weather.  I am pissed at the weather.  I do not accept that I have to have my taxes done in five days.  I so don’t accept it, that I haven’t done a thing.  And, I have not one tax return to do, but two!  This year’s, and last year’s.  I do not accept that there is not a pot of gold at the end of my rainbow.  I live in a fantasy land that at any moment, I am going to win the lottery or that I will come into some other form of cash windfall that will save me from my current situation, which is a job  I don’t like, and a lifestyle that I am having a hard time affording.

I don’t accept, I don’t accept, I don’t accept……..it’s hard to change my life when I’m so busy not accepting all this shit.  I was thinking last night, maybe I need to get a life plan.  Maybe I need to go over my finances, and get a budget.  Maybe I need to see what’s going in, what’s going out, and what can be set aside.  Ya see how these thoughts sneak in?  I know!  I don’t know where they come from.  Some wise ancestor is whispering to me…Listen!  Maybe you can make things better.  Taking a look at my finances would be an act of acceptance.

Today I will toy with the idea of acceptance.  What the hell.  I know what the lack of acceptance is getting me . . . a whole lotta struggle, and a whole lotta nothin’.  I’ll report back.

…and Good Evening.

Good EveningIt’s been a rough day emotionally.  I had therapy today and it never ceases to amaze me how I can bop in there full of reports about how my life is just going swimmingly, only to have these shadows rise from the depth of me and engulf me with their sadness and grief.  Ahh yes, THIS is why I am in therapy!  THIS is why I struggle.  THIS is why I want to drink to numb myself out of existence!  Just for tonight, (stopping for a sob or two) I am committing to NOT drink, but rather to feel, whatever needs to be felt.  To walk through whatever needs to be walked through.  To be there for myself, and be 100% authentic in the sadness and grief as it washes over me.  Wash over and through me, let my tears cleanse me, and then be done for now.

Bipolar Bitches Anonymous Vol. I

AUNT CAROLLE'S WALL OF HAIRLadies this is a new segment for us to hopefully talk and vent about what we go through being BBA’s.  I know for me in addition to being the hottest bitch in any room, I may often be the biggest bitch in the room.  Ta-tum!  Ok!  Anyhoo that is true but also funny.  You will see that is what I am like.  Well I am an extreme, including extremely sweet and sour.  So consequently I pull people in with my mesmerizing looks and sweet sugar kindness, and then KAFOOM MOOD CRASH I am sour and I am Missy Pissy don’t wanna talk I hate my fucking job why can’t everyone stfu (my customers), etc.  This is what I subject my loved ones to.  And myself.

BBA’s, don’t be shy, share yourself & your dilemmas.  Like they say, “We got this bitch!”

Life Swoops In

Life Swoops InYesterday I went over to my parent’s house to talk to my Dad.  He’d gotten some bad test results.  He’s not well.  He’d called my sister, crying.  This would be only the second time I’d ever seen him cry.  He may have been sensing the tunnel at the end of the light.  I know I am.  Sister texts me, I fall apart, call Dad, leave work, head over there.

I’ve mentioned that there were some really hard and sad things that happened with my Dad during my childhood.  I have a good relationship with him now and have mostly made my peace with the past.  My Dad is who he is.  He has his own undiagnosed and untreated mood disorder.  He raised six kids and saw us all through college.  He loves us fiercely and without conditions.  He is a force to be reckoned with, even at almost eighty years of age.

So, I went to talk to Dad.  Countless years of therapy, prayer, meditation and every other kind of effort at knowing myself went into the effort at that moment to be present for my Dad and to talk about his eventual passing from Planet Earth.  I told him how I didn’t want him to worry about us, that we would be ok.  That right now it’s his time.  And that when it’s time to go, he should embrace the journey and look for his loved ones on the other side.  Oh and finally, thanks to the Long Island Medium, I asked him, when he crosses over, to try to keep in touch if at all possible.

We both cried our eyes out.  We said a lot that needed to be said.  Dad isn’t dying tomorrow, or next week.  At least I don’t think so.  But we both crossed some kind of bridge yesterday.  I don’t know what it was; I only know that I am strangely grateful to have gone there.

Life Swoops In

Life Swoops InYesterday I went over to my parent’s house to talk to my Dad.  He’d gotten some bad test results.  He’s not well.  He’d called my sister, crying.  This would be only the second time I’d seen him cry.  He may have been sensing the tunnel at the end of the light.  I know I am.  Sister texts me, I fall apart, call Dad, leave work, head over there.

I’ve mentioned that there were some really hard and sad things that happened with my Dad during my childhood.  I have a good relationship with him now and have mostly made my peace with the past.  My Dad is who he is.  He has his own undiagnosed and untreated mood disorder.  He raised six kids and saw us all through college.  He loves us fiercely and without conditions.  He is a force to be reckoned with, even at almost eighty years of age.

So, I went to talk to Dad.  Countless years of therapy, prayer, meditation and every other kind of effort at knowing myself went into the effort at that moment to be present for my Dad and to talk about his eventual passing from Planet Earth.  I told him how I didn’t want him to worry about us, that we would be ok.  That right now it’s his time.  And that when it’s time to go, he should embrace the journey and look for his loved ones on the other side.  Oh and finally, thanks to the Long Island Medium, I asked him, when he crosses over, to try to keep in touch if at all possible.

We both cried our eyes out.  We said a lot that needed to be said.  Dad isn’t dying tomorrow, or next week.  At least I don’t think so.  But we both crossed some kind of bridge yesterday.  I don’t know what it was; I only know that I am strangely grateful to have gone there.

Smell the Flowers

Smell the Flowers.

What’s this?  My photographs are being displayed in a digital gallery!!  This is certainly a banner day!  My thanks to the publishers!!

The Sweet and Sour Chronicles, Volume I

Sweet and SourThis is what happens when you are in an intensive outpatient program (IOP) that has rigid rules and regulations, such as, if you miss three times, you will be discharged on the fourth.  When you are discharged, you have to start all over and fill out reams of paperwork again.  This will happen even if you have what would be considered in most circles to be an “excused” absence, such as Influenza A.

If you’d like to bring out the extreme sour in a sweet & sour girl, just go ahead and throw these stupid fucking rules at her and see how she responds.  She might (a) fill out the paperwork in gibberish;  (b) make up sexual orientations, such as bilateral;  (c) claim her barriers to healing to involve toe fungus; (d) be in general an asshole, resulting in being told to GROW UP!, at 46 years of age; or (e) All of the above.

I couldn’t help but to break out in loud guffaws every time I spied my paperwork last night during group therapy.  It wasn’t always at appropriate times.  I will need to make amends.  A few questions:  1.  Who the fuck filled that out? Was that actually ME?  And 2.  Who the fuck had to type it?  And how did they keep a straight face or keep from scrawling “Fuck you” across the page?  One will never know.

And that’s it for now, from the Sweet & Sour Chronicles.

Contentment Sneaks In

Contentment

What is this thing called Contentment?  What are you doing here, Security?  Did I just hear you GIGGLE?  My God, WHO ARE YOU AND WHAT HAVE YOU DONE WITH CRANKY?  Something has been visited upon me, and by Buddha I think it’s a spot of Happiness!  And, please don’t judge, it was so worrisome to me, I had to take it to therapy!  Twice!  Oh wait three times!!!

Group Therapy:  “I think I’m manic.  I’m feeling really optimistic.  I’m energetic.  I’m getting up before the alarm.”

Individual Therapy:

Me:  “How do I know if I’m manic?”  Therapist, accusingly:  Well how much are you sleeping?”  Me, defensively:  “Well last night I only slept EIGHT HOURS!”  Therapist spits out:  “That’s NORMAL!”  Me, pitifully:  Cries.  “Am I Happy?”  Therapist, hopelessly: Sighs. “I guess….  Oh by the way your group therapist called to say that you said you thought you were manic.”  —

I returned to Group Therapy last night and let them know that I am in fact Happy, not Manic.

Are you beginning to see how foreign the calm quiet sweet fine-ness is to me?  Contentment to me is not big or loud or proud or rich or orgasmic.  It’s just quiet. Putzing.  Thinking.  Doing.  Resting.  Walking.  Resting.  Creating.  Being.  Resting. Reading.

And just like that.  It has been visited upon me.  I’m going to go take a quiet bath.  And get some rest.

Donny Osmond is STILL Hot!

TUFFSKINSThe first time ever I saw his face…Donny Osmond.  Oh mommy how he turned my five year old insides out!!  Donny & Marie, Marie sweetly croons “I’m a little bit cuuunntttryyyy” to Donnie’s growl “An I’m a little bit RRRRRRRRRAWKEN roll…”  Oh boy!!  He sure knew how to wear a pair of hip huggers (not to mention the chunky clunky male high heels that were popular at the time and made his legs look like long, tall sticks.  HOT!).  Some of the happiest days of my young girlhood was spent running around the yard with my sisters in my purple hiphugger pants, no top, pretending I was one of the Osmond brothers.  And one of the saddest days of my young life was being told by Mom and Dad that I would now have to start wearing a shirt with said purple hiphuggers.

I never felt that topless outdoor freedom again until the sports bra was invented – then it was full steam ahead for the topless outdoor me.  That one little slice of stretchy fabric over some round globules on my chest somehow makes everything socially acceptable.  Yeah it blows my mind too.  Sometimes I’m tempted to go ALL THE WAY off my rocker and just start running around topless like the Osmond brothers again.  I probably would get as far as the mailbox before some well-meaning citizen called 911.

Seems strange that we outlaw the public display of breasts, yet we can’t seem to outlaw guns that are used to hunt people.  Hmm.  Seems like I should be able to find enough well-meaning citizens . . .

My Version of Acceptance

AcceptanceAcceptance is a thin, dry, hard crust of bread that I must somehow strive to swallow with a beaming smile on my face.  Today I go back to work after a week off due to Influenza A.  My perfect sister tells me to “radiate positive energy for the new year.”  My response is that I can radiate positive energy for the next century, but putting lipstick on this pig of a job won’t turn it into Cover Girl, and me into Jennifer Garner, smiling serenely for the camera.  I’ll still be Scrappy Sue, and the people at the job will still be shitheads no matter how hard I try to be kind, fair, positive, good, or helpful.  The point is that I need to get out of this bad, bad situation.  Am I too far gone to find another job?  I’m feeling so beaten to death, I don’t know if I can summon the will, the GOODwill, to find another job and the enthusiasm to say “Yes!  I WANT this job!  I will do a GREAT job for you!”

Acceptance is updating my damn resume anyway, moving forward anyway, acting as if I can do all of these things anyway, whether I believe I can do it or not.  Acceptance is taking the damn action, the next right action for me, whether I want to or not, because I want to keep living in this house.  Because I want to keep living.  Because there’s enough of the “sane” me left that says “keep going”!  Oh dear.  Better go take a shower.  Right now, THAT is my next right action.

Happy New Year.

I’d Like To Buy The World A Diet Coke

DietCoke

Delicious Diet Coke

Fueling My Day

I Must Say ‘Thank You’

To Influenza A

For Giving Me Time Away

From My ‘Career’ aka A Joke!

Here I am trying to get my sewing chops back after not sewing for over five years.  Because I was at a job that consumed me.  Doing things I loved became foreign to me.  DOING WHAT I LOVE IS FOREIGN TO ME NOW.  I can’t remember how to sew.  I can’t remember how to do the things I love?  And I think I need to look for another job doing what I hate.  Here’s what I kept wondering:  Is it me? Or is it the job?  Me? The Job?  Me?  The Job?  What’s the problem?  Always being afraid that the answer was me.  Well now I KNOW the answer is me and is doesn’t scare me at all.  What scares me is this force to make me do things I don’t want to do!  Why is the force so strong in me that I must do something other than what I love?  Why the struggle?

Is it possible that other people decide to be artists, and they sew, and do batik, and make jewelry, and, and, and, and they support themselves?  Is this actually true?  Is this actually possible?  How could I do this?  Me and my big two-steps-forward-three-back-disorder?  I just feel like I’m my own worst enemy.  THAT is my disorder.  Is there a pill for that?  I’ll take five, please.

 

Look Ma, I Got an ‘A’ on the Influenza Test!

Tamiflu

Well.  This is not what I anticipated for Christmas Day.  Staying home.  Alone.  In quarantine.  Suck-a-roo!  When did everybody’s health become so fragile, that a little Influenza A couldn’t be shared among family?  I guess now.  Shitdamnfuckhell.  THERE’S something nobody wants to face.  Oh mama.  Oh papa.  Don’t leave me!!!

How can I be a certified, bona-fide grown-up on so many levels, yet be so petrified of losing my parents at the same time?  Is this how it is for everyone?  I honestly don’t know how I’d live without them!  They are my solid rocks of stability when I’m a kite flitting & flying god-knows-where in the sky.  It’s like they’re holding my string, reeling me in.  Who will be my stabilizing influence when they are gone?  Oh Lordy.  Scary.  I’m even scared that if I figure this out, then somehow the Universe will see this as a signal that they can be taken from me.  I know, whack!  Well, maybe I’m not the only one.  I don’t know.

Don’t let the sun go down on me (oh wait let it!) — does that sound horny to anyone else?

sun

The sun was shining in my window and I had to take a seat in my comfy chair and, like a cat, just soak it up.  I don’t know what it is about me and Light.  We have a tenuous relationship.  Every November, Light asks for its space from me.  It says Hey, yeah, I’m gonna be away for awhile you’ll be ok without me, I’ll see ya on the flip side, and every year I FUCKING FLIP OUT WHEN THE LIGHT LEAVES!!!  Oh Mommy do I need the Light.  So, the “flip” has happened, we passed the solstice, thank you Jesus, Mary, Joseph, Grandma, Grandpa, and all of my other personal saints up there.  I am still kickin’.  The worst is over.  I think.  It was a little touch and go this year.  First hospitalization in more than 20 years.  What a fucking bummer THAT was.  But, very necessary.  So, here I am, strongly attending to every single day and its sunrise and sunset.  You know there’s actually a calendar for people like me, www.sunrisesunset.com.  It lets you make a calendar, with sunrise/sunset, moon phases, and day length.  For someone like me who is so damn light-sensitive and light-hungry, it’s a relief to see the days lengthening.  Someday I hope to be wealthy enough to travel across the world, from summer to summer.  That would be ideal for me.  Spring and summer light is ideal for this tortured brain.  Yes.  Let’s just say that that is a goal now.  Amen.

You Deserve A Break Today

niceseams

I was thinking on my walk about what one of my first bosses said about me in a performance review.  She said “You do a good job and then you want to take a break.  But you can’t take a break.”  Well that has stuck with me.  And you know what?  I DO do a good job!  I actually push myself really hard!!  Whether it’s a walk, a piece of art, or work!  And you know what?  I deserve a fucking break!!!  Know what else??  I do BETTER with lots of breaks.  YES.  Yeah I said it.  It’s almost NAUGHTY in this day and age not to be cutthroat, be all you can be every second of every day, pack it all in, Ima go hike me a fourteener, then I’m gonna write a novel, then I’ll go to work at my big sexy corporate job for sixteen hours (going for a run or a bike ride on my lunch break), and then I’ll go out for tapas and mojitos after work.  SWEET.  Unfortunately I am not that fucking cool.  If I can get a walk in and manage to go to my fucking pitiful job at a fucking even more pitiful company that treats their employees like doggie doo then I feel like a rock star.  Yeah!!  This is why I am Me, and They are Them.

Well, I’m stuck with Me and Me requires lots of breaks.  But, me also takes some pretty sweet pictures here and there.  They’re not the best in the world.  I probably won’t get a coffee table book, like, ever.  I’m not a go-getter!  The only way I’ll ever become a go-getter is if I can do it from the safety and comfort of my couch.  Even then.  I don’t even like the phrase!

I vote for sewing some really straight seams, that are reinforced, with finished edges so they don’t fray!!  Now that is beautiful and satisfying.   Yeah.  I love that.  Sometimes I wish I was a go-getter-entrepreneur.  Sometimes I wish I could live up to my full potential.  Sometimes I wish so bad it hurts.  It hurts so bad it makes me scream-cry.  But that’s not me.  I’m the person who gets insanely happy by making something, and making it really well.  Fine craftsmanship.  I will have to leave my teensy-weensy-mark in indestructible garments, quirky photographs, and goofy belly laughs.  I guess that’s my version of aiming high.  And, I aim to get high.  But that’s a different story.  For when I’m high. HA!

My Precious Child Within has a Question For Your Monkey (you know, the one you spank?)

spankbarebottom

One of my favorite co-workers, Biff, from my last job, has been fired (names have been changed to protect both the innocent AND the guilty).  Biff was such a neat guy.  Awesome, really.  Kind.  Considerate.  The first to offer to help another.  Would rather die than break a rule.  You set out a process, and he will follow it.  Kind as the day is long.  Reliable.  Oh, just such a nice guy.  Sole supporter of a wife and two kids.  Biff is the salt of the earth.

The thing we all loved about Biff was when we could get him to step outside of himself.  And get him to be Funny Biff.  And then he was So FUNNY.  And most of his stories would end with the saying “Well, slap my ass!!  Which leads me to my story.  It’s about spanking bare bottoms.  Biff’s phrase always reminded me of it.

In the photo above I think Mom might have come through on her threat to “spank my bare bottom!” It was mostly an idle threat but man when she did go through with it she was like Greased Lightning! Sling! Pants down.  Ting! Slap Slap Slap.  Whing!  Pants back up.  Andddd it’s over, Ladiesss and Gentlemen!  “Waaaaaaaahhhhhhhhhhhhhhh”  ahhhh the Betrayal!  But mostly, she saved it for our Father.  Who would come home.  And get out his Fraternity Paddle.  Oh yes.  Black.  It would thwack.

Does this have anything to do with my rough sex proclivities?

Sorry.

I had to ask!!!

I will ALWAYS go there!!!

Back to Biff’s story.

Well, Laydee the boss gets a bee in her bonnet about something.  Who knows what.  She decided she didn’t like the job Biff was doing.  So she tore him a new asshole, regular-like, which just destroyed Biff, who is nothing but good intentions, paving the road to hell.  And then she fired Biff.  I’m sure she’s sitting in her big giant house feeling satisfied now.  What will happen to Biff?  And his wife?  And two kids?  Will they be Homeless for the Holidays?

Laydee, I don’t know any of the psychology of what you’ve been through.  I don’t know the details.  I don’t have a judgment.  But I DO know the people you’ve hurt.  I am one of them.  You are creating a lot of bad karma for yourself.  A LOT!!!  You need to look at whatever is eating your lunch and deal with it.  You are stepping on the toes of your fellows, and we shall retaliate, given even the slightest chance!!  We have been wronged!!  We are hurt!!  We are licking large craters of wounds.  Watch it.  Not a threat.  Reality.  Real-world.  It is what it is.  Puke. I hate that phrase more than life itself.  Laydee loves it.  And there ya go.