The fourth IV vitamin injection has me feeling nauseous, dizzy, and my neck hurts so bad I’d be ok if someone wanted to chop my head off.
Health. Yeah. That’s what I’m pursuing.
Pain doctor yesterday. The previous visit was the “shit you are so low” visit. This was the “shit you are so high” visit. We looked at inflammation markers and heart disease stuff. Apparently I have that thing where your body produces a fair bit of cholesterol regardless of what you eat. I was told that if circumstances were different he would want to address that. But my cholesterol level is so low that he wants to encourage me to eat anything I want.
I feel like I’ve landed in the twilight zone. A bunch of medical providers are telling me to EAT ALLLLL THE THINGS. JUST EAT. DON’T WORRY ABOUT IT. JUST EAT. AS MUCH AS YOU CAN. AS OFTEN AS YOU CAN. I didn’t know doctors were capable of saying those sentences. It’s surreal. Even during my previous pregnancies and I was vomiting constantly I still got push back about “not eating too much”. Not this time!
EAT ALLLLLLL THE THINGS.
I now have a list of supplements to go buy. I want to cry. No more.
I’ll take them. But I’ll whine too.
I love my home so much. FMC had a hard time going to sleep because they wanted to stay up and talk and cuddle. EC was awake before me and the minute I indicated consciousness they were all over me. Noah has been cuddling me lots.
I’m so happy to be back in a place where touching is ok. Where I’m allowed to want to put my body up against another body without worrying about sending mixed signals. No, I’m not flirting. I just want to feel alive next to your aliveness.
The flights were delayed so it was a very loooong day of travel. Totally worth it to be home.
I have a huge pile of mail to cope with. Otherwise my household runs pretty much like clockwork with or without me.
I learned that from a teaching book.
We all hung out for a few hours yesterday. I think four hours total in the day. They had other stuff to go do. I rested because that’s seriously what I need to be doing with my life right now.
The time we spent together was… a little awkward sometimes but ok. I think the conversations were all positive if occasionally stiff and the specific behaviors that had been bothering me previously were not repeated.
I understand that they had a very stressful week aside from me being here. Recovering from surgery while doing two weeks worth of work in a week… that’s stressful. It is very important for me to keep in mind that these people are 99.99999% not reacting to me. They are reacting to what is going on in their lives.
It was a good trip. I’m glad I came. There were a few hours with a few tense interactions because we don’t actually know one another. I think that’s pretty damn good if that is as negative as it got. There was no open hostility. There was no fighting or bickering. I had moments of feeling triggered.
That’s really not the end of the world. I kept my feelings and behavior in check.
Well done on being a grown up, everyone. That was nice.
Because I’m a narcissistic asswipe I feel good about the fact that part of the tension in the trip was about me emphatically stating a point of view that had not been previously been considered because it necessitates life experiences they haven’t had. By the end of the trip the conversation evolved to the point where they figured out a way to include my point of view while maintaining their own standards and beliefs about something that is coming up in their life. I don’t want to give specifics about the situation so cryptic shit is cryptic. But my take away is that I did not necessarily share my point of view in a tactful way (I vary in presentation) but they did really hear me. And they listened because I was talking about a type of interaction with vulnerable populations that they care about getting right.
You really can’t ask for anything more than being heard.
So a lot of my preparation for walking away was bitchy and totally unnecessary. I’m glad I didn’t manifest those feelings more loudly. I think I managed to keep those feelings like 98%-99% under wraps. I’m glad.
These folks were nice to me. I hope I didn’t communicate my distress more than I meant to. Y’all know. But my IP tracker says these folks haven’t checked out my blog. Given how overwhelming their life is just the now that makes sense. I’m kinda hoping it stays that way. But if they do come reading, hi. You are lovely people and I appreciated the time with you. I learned more about controlling myself and being a grown up. Thank you for the opportunity.
I see my family in 11 hours. I can barely wait.
I’m not having a bad trip. I’m just trying to manage some feelings I’m having and I’m trying to figure out what set of behavior is what I consider an appropriate reaction to situations that have bumps.
Bumps are part of life.
I have been incredibly cordial on this trip. I have managed my moods beautifully, in my opinion. I’m proud of myself. But I’m feeling some feelings and processing them here helps me not explode inappropriately.
I want to learn how to save my explosions for appropriate situations where they are both effective and useful.
I don’t think I want to stop exploding… ever…
It’s a fucking useful tool to have in my tool box and I don’t care who thinks it isn’t nice. Life isn’t fucking nice.
But I want to learn to have better control over it. A tank is not a bad weapon for a military to have. It’s a shitty fucking tool for a police force to have.
I mean… I don’t think we should make war in most of the places our country chooses to make war… but that’s a different conversation.
I’m a violent person. But my goal is that someday I will have such control that my violence only comes out when it is absolutely necessary for serious protection or someone says pretty pretty pretty please and they are very cute and my husband says it’s ok.
That seems reasonable.
I’m not completely there yet. But I’m getting closer.
I did not explode with violence last summer even though someone escalated to threatening physical violence to my family. I deescalated and just got her the hell out of there.
I’m irritated right now. I’m not threatened. No one is going to hurt me. Nothing bad is going to happen to me. I don’t have to like the way everyone behaves. I need to learn how to not give a shit.
Honestly… fuck. This is like when y’alls boyfriend who moves to Australia used to be in a room with me. I feel like I’m in his position. I want to pick and pick and pick and just point out little irritating things about the stuff that is bugging me.
This is why I don’t campaign against him. Because I know I’m irritating as shit and it makes sense that I irritate him and he wants to pick on me.
CAUSE I FEEL THE SAME FUCKING FEELING SOMETIMES.
I get it. Irritating people are irritating. Sigh. And I need to put my big girl panties on and deal with it. It’s fine. I can be nice.
24 more hours. If I feel like I might get rude I’ll just opt in to a hotel for the night.
I don’t need to be an asshole. It’s entirely optional here. I get to decide what kind of grown up I want to be. I am capable of changing the conditions if they stop working for me.
It will all be fine.
I want to be charming. In exactly that way that monsters are dangerous for being charming. Is it manipulative? Well… yes. Charming is more likely to coax the behavior I want.
Long term enlightened self-interest, mother fucker.
How to write about this. For documentary reasons I try really hard to write down what’s going on for me. For reasons of tact I try to figure out how to do so without blowing things up in my life.
I’m having feelings over how some interactions have gone.
It is interesting to me to note that as I am feeling some objection about some interaction the way I am phrasing this in my head is: even my children don’t get to talk to me like that.
It’s funny how we develop standards and boundaries. Teaching my children how to treat me has been one of the best experiences of my life. In large part because it has worked. My kids are hella polite. They can code switch between many different behavioral expectations. At this point… EC can even handle sitting quietly through a class-like setting.
I thought this day would never come. And yet! With patience and tolerance she has eventually gotten here.
But it’s bigger than that. My children respect me. My children listen to what I have to say and they don’t cut me off to talk about unrelated subjects very often. When I go out into the world I am reminded that other people do not respect me and they do not listen to what I have to say. They are very happy to talk over me and bring up an entirely unrelated point.
You know what? I don’t need to engage with this much. I can… just opt out. I’m not dependent on anyone’s help anymore. I love this feeling so much. It’s like what I learned on the road trip: no amount of “help” is worth putting up with someone who will degrade me in even the smallest of ways. Like the dude who called me stupid. Like E’s parents who wanted to rant at me about domestic violence and home schooling. Like the woman who told me I was wrong for asking to sleep in the same room as my children.
I can keep moving. I don’t need this shit.
IT’S THE BEST FUCKING FEELING IN THE UNIVERSE.
I don’t need you. Bye.
It’s all shivery and glowy and powerful. Muahahahahahaha
I asked Noah if being unwilling to take shitty treatment is the same as having self worth and he agreed that it’s kind of different. I may not think that I’m that awesome, but I’m not going to take no shit off of no one.
Why not? Because I have already taken the limit of shit I’m willing to take in this lifetime. I’m full up. My childhood was enough for ten lifetimes. When I needed help in order to not die, I took shit with the help.
I don’t need help from anyone. Err, except for Noah. And you know what?!?!?! He gives me less shit than anyone else alive.
For the life of me I don’t understand his way of measuring cost/benefit because Noah deserves way better than I give him. How do I learn to give him better to be more appropriate? It’s complicated because often I’m giving at the limit of what I know how to give and feeling like I must come up with more is very frustrating. When I get frustrated at my limitations… I take it out on the people around me. Which is the height of shitty and unfair.
One more day to get through. Then a day of travel. Then I get to go home and crawl into a snuggle pile with the people who love me best in the whole world.
I can barely wait.
Lately the pile includes me leaning my head on Noah’s chest while FMC lies more or less on top of me and EC lies on my legs to be also on dad. It’s glorious.
I lean on Noah. The kids mostly lean on me. They lean on him more with the passing of years and that feels really awesome too. Developmentally it is normal for children to bond most with their mothers early on. Branching out to heavily include dad before puberty is also very appropriate.
Sometimes I feel this feeling of elation. My children are developing normally. My children are hitting normal stages. My children are demonstrating appropriate change over time.
HOW DID I NOT BREAK THEM ALREADY?!??!?! I DO NOT TRUST THIS MAGIC.
The reason I hurt peoples heads is because these times when I suddenly use caps… I do more or less shout those sentences. I’m so irritating.
Which is part of why I’m way more palatable via text.
So I was the recipient of some behavior I have a problem with. I’m going to put my big girl panties on and figure out how to handle this without being nasty.
Is it nasty to say, “If there is ongoing punishment for having opinions that are not what you want me to have… how about if I just leave today and stay in a hotel. That’s totally ok with me.”
I think I’m going to pack and be ready to walk out. That was a beautiful prescient moment I had in E’s parents’ house. I was 95% packed before we walked down to that fateful breakfast where his father pissed me off for the last time.
Yeah… I’ll be packed before they wake up.
Maybe I’m throwing a temper tantrum too. Maybe I’m demonstrating that if you throw a temper tantrum in my direction because you don’t like my opinions there are consequences. I. Do. Not. Reward. Tantrums.
It’s a parenting standpoint I’m quite firm about and I sure as shit am not going to indulge a grown person in such bullshit. But I’m afraid I’m a hypocrite who indulges myself in temper tantrums. Shit.
This is part of the problem of demanding better treatment. If you don’t also hand it out… you are a piece of shit. I’m not sure I always deliver on the behavior I expect to receive and that’s shitty of me.
That’s something I need to work on. A lot.
I checked out ACAL. (Alaska Center for Alternative Lifestyles) It was more a walk through than a visit to a play space because while I was there the woman who runs the space was there and setting up but she says local players don’t show up until later. I was not feeling physically up to waiting a few hours for folks so I stayed about an hour and looked around then I left.
First: the equipment and the art are absolutely top notch. I’ve seen some shitty bdsm equipment over the years where you are taking your life in your hands to use it. This place had quality gear. The art was 100% done by local folks (she said) and it was really good. Even the art that was consciously copying the Tom of Finland style was localized and fabulous.
I’ve seen a lot of art here in Alaska. The use of color and bold statements are amazing. Now that I’ve gone to museums and galleries this house seems… more like a product of its place than an aberrant freakishly impossible art compendium. I still think this house is amazing… but all of the art in Alaska is amazing.
The lady who runs the play space is definitely connected to the wider world of bdsm. She could talk a really good game. She can rattle off all the big name presenters and talk about different play styles and the fads that come and go. She gets out to big conferences all over the place and she brings a lot of teachers up here. She has a great patter.
I hear that she’s really shitty at paying people and that she threatens to out people who don’t comply with her demands. So she had a fantastic first impression… but I’d be wary if I seriously had to deal with her.
She’s definitely charming, I’ll give her that.
The space reminded me of the last Castlebar space. It was cold. The roof drips so there are puddles of water all over the place. It was a huge warehouse kind of feel and it was cold and kind of spooky. I thought it seemed like the kind of place I’d love to get tied up and hit. The dirty/industrial look is very much part of my kink milieu.
Their rules were unusually flexible and tolerant. They permit types of play that many play spaces won’t like water sports and messy blood scenes. The only serious no’s on the list: guns, scat, and inverted self suspensions while you are alone.
Err, that’s all legit. Sure.
She says she can’t allow scat because like someone bringing fish into the office break room and microwaving it… that’s a smell that doesn’t go away and it’s not fair to force other people to smell it. I thought that was incredibly civilized of her.
And on a slightly different note: I have recently learned that a bdsm group in Canada has to include carefully differentiating between puppy play and bestiality in 101 classes because bestiality is legal in at least some parts of Canada and there is a local K-9 sex group and they want to make sure the newbies understand the difference. I FIND THIS DISTURBING.
Shit dude, tell me your friends fuck dead people and I’ll shrug. Not my thing but whatever. You aren’t impacting a living creature who can’t consent. Kinda gross… but whatever. DOGS ARE NOT CAPABLE OF MEANINGFUL CONSENT AND THAT’S JUST COMPLETELY FUCKED UP.
We all have our weird little lines.
I used to schedule two week trips and decide at the ten day mark that I was ready to go home. This time I scheduled a nine day trip and after six days… I’m ready to go home. Deep sigh.
I want to snuggle my family. I want to not feel wrong. No one is doing anything bad… this just isn’t an environment set up for me. From almost everything in the house being breakable to the fact that they are both very quiet and when I can’t hear people I tend to talk louder. Then I hurt their heads. Then I feel ashamed of myself for being too gross and loud and too much and…
I want to go home to my fucktastically loud family where I’m not bad for the volume of my voice.
Everyone is COMPLETELY ENTITLED to have their own preferences for sound volume. I just… can’t hear very well. I’m still passing hearing tests. I think partially because fucking hearing tests are always “can you hear this isolated sound in an otherwise silent environment” and my problem is that if there is any background noise at all I have trouble picking out the morphemes of language. It all becomes a blur. And if you mumble at the same time? Well… let’s just say it probably isn’t a fucking mystery why my children E.N.U.N.C.I.A.T.E. They really want me to hear them.
My house is set up to be safe for me. Not other people. And the thing is… it isn’t about the physical building. It’s about the home and the people. Home is different than a space. Home is the feeling that you are allowed to be somewhere; that you are where you are supposed to be.
I wonder if my home is as safe for the other people who live there. I should probably do some checking on that.
Noah and my kids shine with love for me. They are basically incandescent. And sometimes I get too loud for them, too. Just like they get too loud for me sometimes. And we signal each other in a way that doesn’t trigger this shame spiral.
At home I can feel sheepish and not ashamed. Yeah. I get too excited.
My friend pointed it out in a super polite way. I’m not complaining about his method of asserting that his physical boundaries were being crossed. I’m struggling with my internal set of feelings about being almost 36 fucking years old and I still don’t have that great of control over the volume of my voice.
Noah asked: “Which behavioral/emotional modification are you currently thinking of and trying for?”
I don’t know for sure what I had in mind the exact day I typed the original post. My memory isn’t that good.
But I’m always trying to work on more constructive expressions of anger. Anger is not wrong and anger is not bad but acting inappropriately while angry is a serious problem. By the time my children are adults I hope that they will be proud of how I manage my anger. I have already come a long way in their lifetimes. I hope that I keep getting better. I don’t know if my children will be proud of me. I can’t ask them to be. Not ever. I have to just try and earn it and hope for the best.
I’m still trying to swim through the grief I feel about my mother. I would like that to feel less like dropping a plugged in hair dryer in the bath tub. I would like to get to the point where I am not crying about missing her so often. If I stop and feel sad for a few minutes once or twice a year I think that’ll be reasonable. It’s still way way way way way more often than that. It interferes with time I’d rather be spending in other ways.
I am trying to figure out what I need to do to get my shit together and stop taking so much out on you (Noah). You are my “safe” person and that’s mixed and complicated. I don’t need to dump so much on you just because you won’t abandon me the way anyone else would.
I was doing great on sleep regulation till this damn trip. Now… my sleep is shit. It’s almost 1 in the fucking morning here. It’s almost god damn 2 in my time zone. They haven’t gone to bed yet. So I’m up like a hypervigilant freak.
awake awake awake awake
I need my children because I regulate off of them. I regulate myself by force of will for them. When they are not with me… I spend too much time in my head. I spend too much time feeling like everything I’m doing is wrong.
I’m too sensitive. I’m too needy. I’m too particular.
Let me god damn tell you: it’s fun reading stuff about autistic folks at this moment in my life. Something I hadn’t really expected… I’m finding the diagnosis funny. Like, it makes me feel more amused with myself. But only in certain ways and that doesn’t mean I want anyone else to laugh at me. There are an awful lot of behaviors that I’ve spent years in therapy trying to eradicate and I suspect I would have been better served by being taught how to cope with who I am instead of being told to change who I am.
The fact that I taught myself facial expressions in the mirror… there are so many funny little things like that. I have done a lot of self therapy and I use a lot of techniques that overlap with recommended autistic therapies.
I’ve been doing them for a long time. I practice in the mirror. I make up scripts for how to have conversations. I have spent years documenting my attempt to train myself through writing to be able to see ambiguities in life and not treat everything as a black/white. I mean shit, I’m fucking doing it now. Keeping it on topic. That’s one I really fucking struggle with. It’s complicated.
Another thing I’m trying to figure out is what having self worth means. I can rattle off a list of accomplishments, sure whatever. But I don’t value most of what I can list off much. Whoopdie fucking shit. I mostly walked a marathon.
I’m way more impressed that someone I loved was willing to come help me get through that experience with grace and humor and compassion.
I don’t take pride in my writing, not really. I don’t… see much to take pride in? Ok, so I have the typing equivalent of verbal diarrhea. I don’t write “seriously” or about a real “topic”. I just fucking blather because it helps me not be physically violent in the rest of my life. I organize my feelings. This is my meditation.
Now I lay my thoughts to rest
Each and every day puts them to the test;
If I should die before I wake
My thoughts are here for you to take.
They went in their room. I should probably try to sleep now. Maybe I’ll tell you later about the Anchorage bdsm play space I went to. I only have comments on the building because… uhh… only one person was there and she was kinda busy.
My buddy said an interesting thing to me yesterday. We were talking about my obsession with being unique. He said, “There’s a big difference between acknowledging that something is true about yourself and using something as your identity.” He used examples from his life that I’m not going to repeat for privacy reasons.
I said, “Ah. But there are reasons I lead with my weirdness. It’s not random. When I try to lead with ‘Oh we all have lots in common, see we have so much in common’ I start talking to folks and then I get to little details about my life and folks often will literally physically put their hands in front of them to energetically shove me away and they’ll say something almost exactly like ‘No. I’m not like you. My experiences are NOT LIKE THAT.’ If I lead with ‘I’m completely weird’ then other people try hard to find connections and they don’t get mad at me when it turns out that… their experiences are not like mine. It’s a protective measure.”
My friend stopped and thought real hard about that.
I love when people actually stop and think during a conversation. That shit is hawt.
He kind of nodded and admitted that it makes a lot of sense that people react differently in those cases.
Then the topic shifted.
*I* think I have things in common with everyone on the planet. But I also think that if I try to get people to think they are like me they get upset. If I tell people that I’m really weird… they have more patience with me. They are more capable of looking at me as a weird alien culture who might have an inch of crossover with them and hunh isn’t that interesting.
When I was a kid I used to cry because I didn’t want to be weird. I hated that people constantly told me how weird I am.
Oh, here’s a thing my friend said: he said that often we self identify with a negative because we want to eliminate the sting when someone else uses the negative.
It is kind of like that only I don’t think that being weird is a negative anymore. I think it is a fact and people will acknowledge it whether I bring it up or not. If I bring it up then people can’t bludgeon me with it. So… exactly what he said only I don’t think it’s bad/negative and other people might.
It is interesting reading stuff about autism lately. One of the key phrases I see people use to describe themselves repeatedly “I feel like I come from another planet.”
I feel like I came from this planet and then I had a completely weird set of experiences that other people can’t understand.
So many opposite extremes in my life. Poverty and wealth. Health and dysfunction. Fitness and physical degradation. Violence and the conscious choice to be gentle.
I talk a lot about being a violent person. But I’m a violent person who doesn’t hit people. I’m a violent person who doesn’t use physical intimidation. I’m a violent person who doesn’t verbally threaten people.
Violence is such a complicated topic.
Being in Alaska frames some of the violence differently. Most people here hunt. You know what? I don’t think hunting is violent. It involves killing… for survival. Is that violence or is that life?
When people are fighting other people in a civil war… is that violence or life?
I watched a video in the museum yesterday. A woman was talking about her grandmother who taught her indigenous survival skills, “I quickly learned that my grandmother didn’t take no crap. She was a tough woman who was only going to allow people to treat her with respect.”
Can you be that and not be violent? I sure hope so. Because I’d love to have people think of me in a similar way.
You teach people how to treat you. And I am not interested in taking crap from anyone.
There’s this dude in my extended community. He dates several people I adore. I feel that he has really useful, awesome relationships with them. He does wonderful things for their lives and self esteem. I can’t fucking stand to be in a room with him. He does nothing but give me crap. Or ignore me. There isn’t an in between.
It’s ok that other people are motivated by teasing and taunting and I am not. It is ok that someone can be wonderful for many people and completely a problem for someone else. We don’t all have to need the same kinds of support or the same kinds of relationships.
That’s been a lovely thing to feel deep in my belly as I get older. He’s a fantastic influence in their lives. I would not say words or make gestures that might fuck up their relationships. It would be cruel and evil if I did. But that doesn’t mean I have to like him or be near him.
That’s such a wonderful, freeing thing to feel.
When I was younger I had trouble with the geek social fallacies. “The friends of my friends have to be my friends.”
Naw dude. Make your own damn friends.
A woman I love very much is having a hard time with someone she loves very much. The person she loves is struggling with big life problems. My friend wants me to get involved and be supportive of her friend. She keeps asking me to reach out and indicate love and support and offer myself as a sounding board because I give such good advice and I’m so good at helping people.
I love you. I’m sorry your friend is suffering. No. I am not in a profession where such a reaching out would be appropriate and it would be codependent as fuck for me to add more drama into my life right now. I can’t reach out to a person in crisis and invite them to lean on me right now. It would be wildly inappropriate given what I’m trying to do with my life in this moment. I’m trying to calm my body down. I’m trying to heal a lifetime of physical damage from my life experiences.
I can’t take on a project meth-head right now. That would be highly dysfunctional.
Even though your friend deserves all the support in the world… it can’t come from me.
Boundaries are complicated and hard and have to be looked after. It’s ok for people to ask for things I don’t want to give. But I need to be on my toes about saying “No”.
I think this is a positive step for me?
And that’s the end of my attention span.
I love this city (Anchorage). I love that walking from my friend’s house to the grocery store means walking along a heavily wooded path next to a bountiful river. Everything is so lush and beautiful.
The people are so kind. People are talking to me every day. I don’t have to initiate every pick up conversation!!!
I want to bring my family here to meet the city. My kids point out “We’d have to spend a winter there before we even thought about moving there.” I love my kids. They are brilliant. They are forward thinking and wise.
The food here is shockingly good. My previous Alaska experience (in Yakutat and Ketchikan) involved a lot of… not so good food. The pho place is delicious! The fruit quality is way higher than I expected. The salad greens aren’t nasty. I’m doing pretty well for food. Still pooping pretty. ha
I miss the woods. I’ve lived in dry or desert for so long. I miss water.
BTW- I decided not to ask my friend for permission to use his name. He’s famous and I don’t choose to name drop. That’s a level of star-fuckery I don’t need to mess with. He’s my wonderful friend and I’m blessed to know him. I don’t need to try and link my name to his on google.
He’s famous because he puts himself out there and he shares his experiences and he’s willing to grow in public. He’s a fantastic teacher. I learn so much in conversations with him. I feel deeply blessed that so many of the most fascinating people of my generation are willing to talk to me.
I had a funny thought yesterday. I have felt for years that my children are pretty much the reason I have stuck around and really dug into life. I have felt like there wasn’t ever really a place for me until I was EC & FMC’s mom.
My friends remind me that I have a lot of gifts to offer the world. The world doesn’t have a precarved out position for me… like being EC & FMC’s mom… but I have a lot to offer. The world doesn’t have much to give anyone; the world wants to know what you have to give to others. The world doesn’t care what you need.
I could have made a life. I could have carved out a Krissy shaped hole in the world that would have been impossible to fill when I die because people can’t duplicate one another. There is enough need in this world that I can fill… I could have made a place.
But I’m so much happier getting to be a mom. I take pride in my children being stubborn and challenging and inconvenient. I take joy from seeing them move out into the world while needing me less and less. I’m grateful that they still are very sad to go eight whole days without snuggling me.
I do matter to them. Their day is actively worse when I’m not present. There is a Krissy shaped hole in my house right now.
And yeah… it’s still centered around what I have to give. That’s true. But on days when I’m at empty and I have almost nothing to give? There is still a Krissy shaped spot where they want me.
When random strangers judge how “functional” they perceive me to be… I am getting better at taking a deep breathe and recognizing that they have no scope for my life.
I think of Jenny telling me that she knows how far I’ve come.
Am I perfect? Oh fuck no. I’m a train wreck in motion. But I’m causing less damage over time. I’m making healthier choices. I’m better aware of how my actions impact people and I consider that more seriously.
I’m more honest about the fact that I am chronically mentally and physically ill. There are days when I can’t do/be/give much. The world wouldn’t take much pity on me for this. Some… but not a lot. My family thinks that giving me extra support sometimes on bad days is balanced out by the good days. There is still space for me to be appreciated even when I’m a loser who can’t work.
How much work do you have to be able to do in order to deserve life? How much do you have to give before you count as “doing well”? What does “functional” mean anyway?
We had a delightful chat tonight about polyamory pitfalls. I was very blunt about how badly I fucked up last year. My phrasing was very close to, “I started as a cheating piece of shit and I ended feeling like an abusive monster. I had a banner year! And then he wanted to get me pregnant. Because I’m not the only masochist in my house.”
My friend is such a good listener and he is one of the least judgy people on the planet. We all make fucked up choices sometimes. Look at why you broke down and make changes to ensure that won’t happen again. Life is about getting back up when you fall down. We all fall down…
I think that some people believe that in order to be “doing well” you have to not fall down anymore.
We all start from different places and with different potential and different talents and different problems and…
I think I’m going to periodically fuck up royally until the day I die. Even if I live to be 95. I don’t think I’ll ever figure out how to be perfect. I’m going to keep fucking up. (Partially because I have every intention of continuing to meet new people at a blistering pace as long as I can. It keeps you young.)
Oh man, speaking of fresh opportunities to fuck up… The kind folks I’m visiting listened to the end of my explanation of my fucking up and I got to the part where I talked about the unicorn hunting we may do some year in the distant future. Their response was, “Oh! You want _______! I’ll ship him to you!”
Very kind offer darling. Not this decade.
I’m not saying I’m opposed permanently… just… not the now.
He does sound right up Noah’s alley. And that’s going to be a big part of unicorn hunting for us. Why do I call it unicorn hunting? Because asshole couples (like us) want to go find hot bisexual people for no strings attached sex. And there are a lot of asshole couples like us and very very very few humans who enjoy being a third. Thus: unicorns. They can be of any gender. Cause life is awesome!
I told my friends that I think we’ve shot ourselves in the foot when it comes to hunting in the pool of our local friends. They saw the drama explosion and got to read a play by play of the screaming matches at home that lasted for months. Who the fuck wants to step in that mess?
Hey. I’m totally up front about the level of crazy you are getting with me.
Yeah. I should be asleep. It’s 11pm here so it’s 12 pm at home. BUT I DO NOT ENJOY SLEEPING ALONE IN A ROOM WITH NO ONE TOUCHING ME. THIS IS HORRIBLE AND A HALF. I shoulda brought a kid. Maybe just one kid would have been enough of a vacation….
I mean… I did bring a kid… but the current one is only the size of a lemon and just starting to play bumper cars with my internal organs. It’s different. I think this is going to be the longest I have gone without snuggles……. since I got married? Probably when I lived alone before I moved in with Noah. The last solo trip to NY before I got married even involved pick up sex with the swinger who showed up at the bdsm con. And I snuggled my ex-girlfriend then. And a whole bunch of cuddle friends.
Yeah it must be when I lived alone after Puppy dumped me. 2006.
Wow… my life is different. I had… forgotten what skin hunger felt like. Oh Noah honey. The road trip must have been so shitty for you. What an incredible gift you gave us. We’ll never leave you behind like that again. This is hard.
I feel so lucky that I get to have a family so that I can deal with this aching need to not only be touched to meet today’s need… but be touched a lot to start filling in the damage of years of lack of healthy touch.
“Baby’s aren’t Prozac.” Err… uhm… that’s uhm. Ok. No they aren’t a little pill. They are people. People create the opportunity for relationships. Relationships release brain chemicals that improve peoples moods. Babies are a blank slate to teach someone how you want to be in a relationship. If you do it in a healthy way… it’s fantastic for both of you. If you are narcissistic or so traumatized/disabled/(fill in the blank reason) you cannot teach someone how to be in a healthy relationship… it’s catastrophic.
I consult an awful lot of professionals about my children because I’m fucking terrified of doing it wrong. Does that mean I’m doing it right? No. It means I’m probably not going to go off the rails too badly and damage my children in similar patterns to my family history. Because professionals are good at watching for patterns like that. It’s their job. They ain’t emotionally invested in me. They ain’t my friends. They want what is best for my family because that is how they service their community. Which means *I’m* not always the important consideration. I think that is healthy.
I am not a victim in my life. I am a privileged participant. You can have a traumatic history and not be a victim. I still have impairments that I’m trying to deal with as a result of my history. I’m still not a victim any more.
With every year I discover more about what it means to be in my story. I have come a long way.
I had another of those experiences where I ask someone, “Did you have x kind of experience?” and they go “Oh yeah” and I go “So how do you deal with a, b, and c backlash from d and e happening?”
WHAT IS THE CONSISTENT RESPONSE TO THIS?! “Oh wow. Not like that. No.”
I keep trying to find folks who can help me map some of the next stages of where I want to go in terms of behavioral/emotional modification. I really don’t think anyone has done what I want to do. Not exactly. Not with my background. Not who got as far as I’ve already gotten with the deficits I think I will be able to figure out how to overcome.
I don’t think anyone exists.
“You’re obsessed with being unique.” I actually broke up with my shrink without ever discussing this. I just… let it go.
The more I recognize that I’m not much like anyone else the more free I feel. I really get to just decide whoever the fuck I want to be because there aren’t models out there. Most people like me just die. But I haven’t. And I don’t think I will any time soon bar a freak accident.
Do you know how weird that feels deep in the pit of my belly? I believe I’m not going anywhere. I’m here for the long-haul. I have children to raise. I have a database to help build. I have people to learn from. I have things I want to do. I’m going to do a lot of things. I mean… that’s not in question. It’s not an idle boast. It’s a simple statement of fact.
Holy shit. I believe that.
“Babies aren’t Prozac” but the first year of my daughter’s life was the most euphoric I have ever been and I’ve done some damn good drugs.
I need my children partially because they need me to be an autonomous human being with drives and interests of my own. I may not act on that in the same way as other mothers… but that doesn’t make my way wrong. It is ok to be culturally out of step. I live in a place where diverse cultures are supposed to be expected.
I’m finally starting to get sleepy. I miss my Noah.
I wanted a chance to miss them. Well, I’m getting it. Sigh.
I feel like a rabbit that is going to dart back into its burrow where it feels safe. But first it’s going to eat some clover and roll over on the grass and enjoy some sun and…
Tomorrow I am going to go to the museum and discover what the locals mean when they say “drinking chocolate”. Err, that’ll be at a separate location… not in the museum. Apparently B was invited to come to an event at the local Hard Rock Cafe tomorrow night so uhhh that’ll be my second time ever at a HRC.
I wanna try the fried chicken. But I guess not tomorrow. Maybe Friday. Saturday I get to see one of Jenny’s aunts. I look forward to that. It’ll be a chance to hear a side of the family lore that I’ve never heard before. Given how much I love Jenny’s mom… that’s a super big treat for me. I’ll be so good.
Pam partially inspires such devotion from me because she includes me in her family. She shares the beautiful words her parents say. She shares her fun, sweet sister. She believes there is a Krissy shaped hole in her family and she is happy to pull me right into it.
See, I don’t just use my relationships with my babies as my Prozac. I know I need to diversify my sources and shit.
I’ve got some really good people. I’m a ridiculously lucky person.
I wouldn’t bring my kids to this house… but I feel like I’d probably be welcome back after some reasonable interval. I don’t burn every bridge to the ground. I may have yelled at R’s dad… but he totally earned it. Not everyone does! Even I can get along with reasonable people.
I have no patience for old jack asses who expect me to be impressed by who they are banging.
I’m still pissy with SM for telling me that he invited me to speak at an event because Noah is cool and Noah married me so he guesses I must be cool. Oh and can you please not talk about any of the things you spend all of your time talking about? M’kay?
Naw. I’m out.
My schtick is complicated as fuck, yo. Layers. Like an onion. I’ll make you cry. But only occasionally. I hope.
Or maybe instead of crying you spend time laughing. I don’t know what.
I can’t control what other people hear. I can control what I type out. But I can’t control the distortions and perceptions and past experiences people bring to reading. No matter how poetically I scream into the void… the void does whatever the fuck it wants to do.
B is the publicly acceptable way to refer to my friend’s wife so I’m going to say that. I haven’t asked my friend how he feels about being mentioned by name so I’ll still refrain. This is only a bdsm crossover because I know these folks through that community.
B is a HUGE patron of the arts. In her house and in her office there is a ton of art. Her office has a bunch of fancily painted walls by a variety of artists she knows. There are multiple murals or small pieces in different rooms.
She offered me space to paint, if I want. On one hand… I want to say no. I’m tired and that would be work. On the other hand… this beautiful, talented, interesting woman who works with a demographic I target heavily for influencing with my life has invited me to have space to influence how people feel.
She told me that if it would make me happier to do the work they could chain me while I work. I said that is not permitted within the current boundaries of my relationship but thank you for the offer.
That’s… that’s a really cool offer. I have art installations in California. Would I like to also have an art installation in Alaska?
Oh gosh. When I phrase it like that….
My friend who invited me up here to stay… he has a voice. He influences lives all over the world and he has done so for going on twenty years now. He has spent years encouraging me to share my voice with the world because he thinks I have lessons to teach.
I feel really validated here.
These people who are doing the real work are validating that even though I am hiding at home for a few years so I can learn the things I want to learn… I still have a lot to offer. They invite me back into the wide world.
But I’m afraid of the wide world. The wide world is big. The wide world doesn’t want to do shit for me. The wide world wants to know what I’m going to do for them.
That’s how it works with everyone. I don’t think I’m persecuted or anything.
I like my bubble.
I like having a family.
I like the friends who seek me out and ask to be part of my life. I like the people who actively invite me into their lives because they perceive me as being someone they want to be near.
The wide world…
But I’m not truly contemplating the wide world. I’m contemplating a wall. Maybe I should go make some sketches. I’m having some ideas. Butterflies and change and growth.
Cause I brought quite a few art supplies…
I spent the whole first day I was away from my family feeling both elated and like I was longing for my kids so much it ached. It was a funny feeling. I spent a lot of the plane rides thinking about baby names. Thinking about how my big kids are going to adapt. Thinking about how much I like the way Noah’s eyes look when he smiles.
I got up to Alaska and got settled in the house. I walked to the grocery store and bought a backpack full of food. If I had to walk to the store and I was shopping for a family… I’d need to go daily. It’s hard to carry enough food.
It’s really beautiful here. The woods are magnificent and the local flora and fauna are breathtaking. The colors are so vibrant and intense.
MY FRIEND’S HOUSE IS THE COOLEST HOUSE EVER. Ok, I like my house a lot. My house suits me and is perfect for how I’m living my life. I couldn’t live in this house. Too much is breakable. But every single thing in this house was selected for beauty. Even the fucking extension cords are neat and light up and fun. The furniture is gorgeous. There is art on every wall, window sill, cabinet, shelf, and hanging from the ceilings. The art is very different and yet it all goes together in a very magical-feeling way. This is a house full of pagans who take their witchery seriously and it feels magic.
My kids would break half of it in an hour. Maybe less time on a bad day. lol.
My kids asked me if it was ok for me to touch the art here since I’m not in a museum and I showed them around the art in the room I’m staying with and we talked about which pieces could be touched without destroying them (like the simple wood carving of a bear) vs the oil paintings or the delicate paper work or the fantastic wood/lacquer/veneer stuff…. Mostly… this isn’t stuff to touch. It’s stuff to see and enjoy and get the fuck away from.
My friend’s wife is a very neat lady. I will not disclose her profession, but I’ll say she’s a helper in the world and she takes it very seriously. She delivers facts and support with great force. I like that.
My friend that I’m visiting is such a good listener. He is good at that intense, deep listening where you are trying to hear the story and the story behind the story. It’s nice to see him. The last time I saw him I was 6 months pregnant and running a bdsm convention. He definitely hasn’t met my kids.
I have interesting feelings about so many of my friends really not wanting to meet my kids. I know a lot of non-breeders. Some of my non-breeding friends like kids and some want to avoid children as if they might be contagious.
Thanks to the lovely grown ups who show up and treat my kids like people. I see you. I appreciate you. My kids appreciate you too.
Clearly these folks have a full life and don’t need children friends. They are full up on their friend-slots being full of grown ups.
It’s interesting being in a house of folks who do bdsm full time and professionally again. It took me multiple walk throughs of the house before I noticed how full of gear and equipment the house is. I looked right past the spanking bench and the piles of rope and the beautiful St Andrews Cross. I would have thought that I would be more paranoid about such things these days but… nope. The things in this house are selected with such an eye to beauty that even the bdsm equipment just seems lushly in the correct place.
Once upon a time I aspired to a life like this so much. But kids were more important to me. I think my Owner would have allowed me to have this kind of life. He would have always been a distant, non-supportive boyfriend. He didn’t want me to leave.
I wanted kids.
I’m so grateful for my kids. I don’t think I would have been physically capable of maintaining the interest in life it takes to stay alive if I had continued living for bdsm. It’s a great hobby. I like it. It’s fun.
It can’t be my life. I think it is awesome that it is my friend’s life. He is a fabulous teacher and he helps people connect with their bodies and their souls; I admire the work he is doing and I think it is truly spiritual work. I definitely don’t feel I am doing something more worthy with my life. He is a much bigger fish in a much bigger pond and he is changing the world.
I am learning how to feel loved.
It’s a different journey, is all. I’m really glad he is on the journey he’s on. I admire him. I learn so much from him.
I really appreciate that people allow me to learn from them. I am a better person because of the people in my life.
Random aside that may or may not make sense completely out of context and I don’t want to give context: It may not occur to you that I’m not worried about your ability to set boundaries. I know you can do that. You may not understand that if I asked for more and I hit more boundaries (because you appropriately and rightly need to have them) I will stop being able to ask for even what I ask for now. I will withdraw. Not to punish you. To punish myself. Because I asked for too much and I am bad. When I talk about relationships not being able to withstand the strain of more… I am often talking about myself. I ask for the absolute limit of “no” I can handle hearing. If I get more of it than I feel like I can carry… I have to pull back on the relationship hard and I have to convince myself to not be so involved. That’s me. I’m not saying that the blow ups would have to be about other people rejecting me.
I kind of pre-reject myself.
And now I’m crying. Luckily they sleep hella late.
I will take yet another detour into a different direction and say I’m pooping great. My body tends to be incredibly happy with how I eat when I’m traveling. It makes me wish I could duplicate this better at home.
At the grocery store I bought: 1/2 gallon of whole milk, 1/2 gallon of oj, a small piece of salami, cheese sticks, a small tub of potato salad, an individual caesar salad with chicken, bananas, pistachios, two packets of ramen, a tub of mixed pre-cut fruit, a tub of yogurt, and a baguette sandwich with brie and ham. I have not yet touched the pistachios, ramen, or salami. The caesar salad, a bunch of fruit and yogurt, the sandwich, the potato salad, and a lot of the liquid are gone.
I’ve also walked a lot in the past two days. I haven’t been hitting my 10,000 step goal very often lately and I’ve gone over the past two days.
But walking a lot by itself really doesn’t cure my poop issues. And I pooped great on the road trip when I was not exercising much at all.
I’m eating every 4-5 hours, which is counter to the medical advice I’ve been given lately that says I should REALLY be eating every 2 hours due to how low my sugar levels are.
But at least I have been eating protein constantly. That’s something. And outside the sugar in the oj, fruit, yogurt, and milk…. it’s not exactly a sugar tastic spree. I was offered cookies and dessert. It sounded horrible.
I mean… the cookies look good. But my belly is completely opposed to processed sugar right now.
I had some hfcs on the plane and that didn’t even bother me. I drank a soda bottle, two oj bottles, a powerade bottle, three water bottles, and cups of ginger ale on the flight. I’m amazed I only peed once per flight. That’s probably 120 oz of liquid… while I was in the air. Bodies are weird. But I’m not as dehydrated as I usually am when I fly!
And I totally had more to drink once I landed and went to the store. I even drank more water after I landed. I went through three more fill ups on my water bottle. So 72ish oz of water in the day. Yes, yes people “should only drink water” but I have a hellish time eating enough calories and I’m fucking pregnant. I’m going to keep drinking the sugar and salt so I don’t pass out.
I feel like today needs to be a lower energy day. I’m wiped.
I spend too much time reading forums. I get a lot of ideas of how I don’t want to behave when I grow up. Good gracious. Boundaries are awesome! My kids and I talk about future planning when they are adults. The conversation goes something like:
Me: “Of course I would love to spend time with you as a grown up. I will ask for visits. BUT IT’S OK TO TELL ME THAT IT’S NOT A GOOD TIME OR JUST PLAIN NO.”
EC: “Oh don’t worry mom, I’ll tell you no when it doesn’t work for me. I will have stuff of my own to do.”
IS IT REALLY THAT HARD TO HAVE FUCKING BOUNDARIES WITH ADULT CHILDREN?! I DON’T GET IT.
I feel like one of the wonderful things I’ve gotten from being a parent is the strong NEED to work on boundaries. My boundaries with my kids are not real muddy. There are topics we don’t discuss. There are kinds of support they are not allowed to give me. (Now if you want to support me by sweeping and washing the dishes… I’m down.)
My kids are fan-fucking-tastic house mates. They want to be helpful. They want to live in a house that works like clockwork because then they get to do more of their spontaneous desires without being told “No. You must do the pre-reqs before you move on to the fun part.” If you just keep up with the pre-reqs of picking up after yourself most of the time… it’s not that hard.
Sarah and I speculate about what my kids will be like as adults. Right now they are boss-cleaners. They handle their shit and they contribute to household shit as they feel generous. Will this continue? Will my children want to grow up and live in an orderly house or will they grow up to live in abject chaos JUST TO PROVE THEY CAN. I expect at least some phases of chaos. Hopefully I will invest in some duct tape and keep my fat mouth shut.
Random thing I was thinking about: I talk about Jenny a lot as my oldest friend. But I have multiple other people in my life I met at the same time or really a few months/a year before I got to know her as well. I feel like Jenny and I got closer as I was rounding the bend towards 13. Y & G were both intensely close friends before her. I don’t talk to G very often because he’s out in Utah, but I do talk to him. (He’s going to start fostering children with his wife! I’m excited. I think they will be fabulous foster parents.) I talk to Y a few times a month. We had many years where we didn’t really talk because life was busy, but we’ve never really fallen completely out of touch.
But Jenny is the one in my mind. She is the bright shining star at the top of my Christmas tree and that’s an interesting thing.
Something that occurred to me… Y & G never put up harsh boundaries with my abusive behavior. They both grew up in shitty families and just kind of put their heads down to take it. Neither of them ever told me to stop hitting them or being nasty.
Jenny did. When I’m an asshole to Jenny… she’ll cheerfully go months without talking to me till I get my shit together. Jenny has fucking boundaries.
I wonder how much that plays into Jenny being the shining star. I have had to work on myself in order to deserve this relationship and I think that matters. I think that Jenny feels like more of an accomplishment because she wasn’t willing to put up with me being shitty. The fact that she’s still my friend is a reflection that I have gotten better.
Y & G? Yeah… I think they would have known me forever no matter how much of a bully I was. That kind of makes me sad. They both deserve better.
Why do Y & G get initials? Because I haven’t asked their permission to use their names. I do care about that kind of thing.
Y & G carried me through middle school. They are two of the biggest reasons that middle school was the happiest time of my childhood. But they aren’t the bright shining stars on the top of my Christmas tree.
I feel bad about that. I love them. They are wonderful people. I deeply look up to both of them in different ways. But Jenny’s different.
Y & G feel like beloved friends.
Jenny feels like my family. Which is complicated with my abhorrence for chosen family. But there she is.
Jenny and Sarah and Pam remind me that family isn’t about blood. Because they stay in my life and demand better from me year after year. They don’t accept my shittiness. They say, “Yeah… that’s not ok. Stop that.” Because they love me
I don’t think they feel like they are setting boundaries as firmly as they are. I feel it though. I feel the cocoon of “I am this way and you must accept me and respect my limits.”
It’s so wonderful. Them having this cocoon around them makes me feel safe. I can see what will and won’t be tolerated and I can adapt. They will all explain their limits to me, patiently. “Yeah that won’t work for me because ______.” “OOOOOHHHH! That’s why! Yes! That makes sense! Thank you for explaining that to me!”
I feel so lucky.
I know that justifying/arguing/defending/explaining is frowned upon by lots of people. I know. I don’t think I deserve an explanation. But I try very hard to respond respectfully when someone does something they don’t have to do.
I don’t listen to the explanation because I’m trying to figure out how to manipulate them into doing what I want anyway. I listen to the explanation so I can have a better mental model in my head about why they want what they want. Then maybe I won’t need that same explanation again.
Yeah… sometimes I fuck this up big. But I’m trying.
I think part of what I value so deeply about Pam, Sarah, and Jenny is that they are pretty fucking good at understanding themselves and why they have their boundaries. It’s a rare talent.
Decades of relationships. I haven’t failed at every relationship. Almost 24 years. Almost 21 years. Almost 14 years. I’ve been married 11 years.
I haven’t failed at every relationship.
But it’s complicated. So complicated.
I feel ashamed of how much some people in my network have so much more influence over me than anyone else.
Like, if Pam ever seriously read me the riot act and told me she was ashamed of me because my behavior was completely over the line… I’d crumble like a cracker. It would be a BIG FUCKING DEAL because she just doesn’t do that sort of thing. I would deserve it. She’s not manipulative. She’s not hostile. She’s not controlling. She’s not judgmental. If she came down on me like a ton of bricks…. I would deserve it. I caused it.
So I work very hard to not cause it. Because I need her good esteem.
This all contributes to thoughts I’ve been having about “safe” people getting the majority of abuse. Y & G are safe people to abuse. They won’t resist. Jenny is not safe. She will walk away because she has that integrity.
I want to learn how to appreciate the safe people without hurting them so much.
Today I get to drive to my chiropractors, then go to the bank, then drive to San Jose for intravenous vitamins, then come back home. Do chores and help get the house set up for my absence next week. Double check my packing. Then drive back to Santa Clara for family therapy. Wheeee.
We have some stuff to discuss that is very important. My children are expressing that they need help talking about some big feelings. Yes, beloved. We will cheerfully and lovingly support you in that. It’s ok to have feelings that you worry might hurt me. I will cope. Let’s talk about you.
Tomorrow I get my first massage in months. I’m so excited. My shoulders hurt so much.
Sunday I will be dropped off at SFO at about 5am.
I don’t plan to answer my phone or email much while I’m gone. I need to kind of evaporate for a bit. I’ll talk to my kids as much as they need… but I’m not going to be very friend-available. I love you all.
I am looking forward to this trip so much I can barely sit still. I need time to just… be. I’m bringing two big fat books I don’t have to carry home with me so the weight will go away when I’m done reading them. (Pop fiction I’m not attached to rereading.) My friend in AK is a reader so if I run out of stuff to read he’ll have stuff around.
I intend to walk around his neighborhood a fair bit.
I intend to not cause trouble. We’ll see if I manage for a week.
Getting all the medical test results… is both disheartening and really interesting. I feel a lot less bad about the way I feel weak and inadequate in my body. My body does not really have everything it is supposed to have to feel strong and adequate. I’m not imagining things. It’s just true.
Calcium and amino acids. Those were the two things he checked that were “Strangely in normal range.” I drink/eat dairy like it is going out of style. I wonder if the SHEER AMOUNT of milk and cheese I consume is enough to balance things out. I will probably never know for sure. (God I love milk.)
Who knows. I sure don’t.
The tech was… not warm. She had crappy bedside manner. But I have pictures of Lightning. The tech inappropriately told me that she saw nothing wrong. That’s supposed to come from my doctor. But that’s fine. Likely no Down’s Syndrome.
There’s a part of me that is feeling angry about people being relieved my baby is any way. However they come out is how they are supposed to be and fuck you very much. Are there some ways of being that create more work in the world? Yes. BUT WE LIVE IN THE FUTURE AND WE CAN AFFORD THAT SHIT SO STOP ACTING LIKE PEOPLE ARE SUPERIOR BASED ON HOW ACTIVE SOME PARTS OF THEIR GENOME ARE.
It’s bothering me. Like it would be The End Of The World And The Worst Thing if my baby were born… dunh dunh dunh… abnormal.
Guess what motherfuckers. We’re abnormal.
And lots of people in my family are disabled in one way or another. I’m not real open to the perception that we should be sad about any of us existing.
Reading White Trash and looking at the genetic stuff that likely comes from poverty and trauma…
I would not terminate a less than “perfect” child. I will embrace them and figure out how I need to grow and change to support them in their path to independence. That’s my job.
I’m in this with them until I can’t be anywhere any more.
That’s the deal.
We are still going through test results. Today consisted of a lot of him (pain doctor) going down a list of vitamins, minerals, or whatever your body is supposed to have and saying, “Barely in normal range but it’s so low I’m worried” or “Totally deficient” and a couple of times he dropped in, “Ok, it’s a little weird but ____ is normal. Hunh. I wonder why.” For example, my amino acids are doing great and that baffles him.
But I’m deficient in most places. Especially B and D.
I have to come in to the office twice a week for ten weeks to get intravenous vitamins. I want to cry. Other vitamins I can take sublingually. Some are going to be liquids. A few chewable that I’m supposed to just suck on forever.
But very few new pills! That’ll be good!
He says my GI tract is so fucked that I can’t absorb vitamins almost at all and that’s why I’m so deficient. Given the decades of diarrhea that seems legit to me.
I point blank asked about exercise, Blacksheep. He said, “Walk. Don’t jog. If you are feeling REALLY good and you want to walk a little fast… maybe… But DON’T JOG. YOU DO NOT NEED TO RAISE YOUR HEART RATE. Just move around.”
Which is exactly what I’ve been trying to nail down for advice. Tell me what my limits need to be because I think my limits are… not where other peoples are.
I’m going to have a more boring couple of years, here.
I had a somatic therapy session today. That was good. I spent time working on my ridiculous need for validation. I talked about my codependency. I cried a lot. Lots of grounding was done.
I’m tired of being in pain. I’m tired of feeling so tired that moving around feels like going uphill through a river of molasses. I’m tired of feeling listless and apathetic.
I miss feeling excitable and full of anticipation. I want to meet this baby, but I’m so fucking tired.
I keep having what I’m thinking of as “anti-nesting” feeling. I want to run away from the bay area so badly. I know I leave on a trip in a few days. It’s not soon enough. It’s not long enough. It’s not even far enough. I want to run and keep running and running and running.
I’m scared of my codependency. I’m scared of the choices I’ve made and who I’ve brought into my life. Running away sounds easier than being a grown up and evolving in place.
But leaving this house sounds traumatic and terrible. This is my only forever home.
I’m looking at real estate and rental properties all over the world. Nothing is as cool as the house I made. *sniff*
I am so conflicted about this house. I didn’t pick it. I didn’t want it. But I made it mine.
I feel like the Disneyland website is my Methadone. Less than 23 weeks to go. It happens before giving birth so it is a milestone of excitement in the middle of a pregnancy where I am striving to have as little excitement as possible.
Renting a car in Alaska would have cost $700. Oh fuck no. So I’m going to download Lyft and mostly stay in my friend’s house not doing much. I need the rest anyway. There’s a Fred Meyer’s (oh bless Fred Meyer’s!) 1.5 miles from the house and multiple restaurants within a similar distance in the other direction. No trouble. I can walk. I am sturdy. Even if I feel like shit. I ain’t fast but I fucking get there.
It was interesting to have the pain doctor bring up Epstein Barr. I’m not sure what to make of him bringing that up. If it was a periodic recurring thing for me… that would explain these periods when I absolutely sag with being out of energy. I don’t know though. Like right now. My neighbor wants to visit today. I feel so deflated of energy I feel like I could sink through my chair into the sub-flooring.
But I want to travel? I want to go to Disneyland?
I do. It’s weird.
I think I’m going to move slowly and carefully. I think I will only go on a few rides. I will mostly enjoy being around the explosive joy. The last time I was at Disney while pregnant I was kind of resentful. This time I don’t think I will be. I’m ok skipping coasters right now. I just want to watch.
It’s kind of awesome that I know we are quite possibly moving. I won’t buy much.
Methadone. I’m telling you.
My kid is trying to figure out how they want to talk about a problem they are having. I am impressed with their willingness to see many sides of this issue. “Ok, you are upset about X person doing Y. How often do you do Y? How do you want people to react when you do the thing that is upsetting you right now?”
They are taking it in and thinking seriously about what boundaries and consequences mean. Setting a boundary and having a consequence for a behavior doesn’t have to be done out of anger or spite. It doesn’t have to be done out of hate or vindictiveness. It can be part of loving the other person AND loving yourself.
“Hey, we are friends and I like you but I don’t like when you Y. I need that to change.”
That’s… such a healthy thing. People are going to be challenging to your boundaries FOREVER. That’s never going to stop. The only part that you can control is how you react to people impacting your boundaries. You can say, “When Y happens I’m going to need to go home for the day. We can try again on another day.”
It doesn’t mean you hate the person because they are doing something you have a problem with. How you feel about a person can be separate from how you feel about a behavior. How do we talk about the problem without making it sound like the PERSON is the PROBLEM? Because that’s not true. People aren’t problems. People sometimes have behavior that is a problem.
How do we train each other? How do we teach one another what we can handle and respect? It’s a process. It’s a long, complicated process. It happens one interaction at a time. How do you structure these interactions so that you make progress towards your goal of preserving a friendship plus adding boundaries?
It’s hella complicated. I’m the first person to admit I’m kind of shit at this process.
But I remember the Dear Jane lady from years ago. I “used up all of my chances” without ever knowing that I was using chances.
I don’t want to do that to other people.
It’s a complicated world. People come from a lot of cultures and backgrounds. Folks expect different behavior. The way to ensure that your boundaries are respected is to be willing to walk away if they aren’t. You have no other real recourse. Which is tricky if you need the relationship for some reason.
I am so lucky that I don’t need many people past my nuclear family at this point. It makes it a lot easier to just set boundaries.
It has really bothered me how much my recently-fired-psychiatrist was convinced that I was using a horrifically high dosage of pot and she was freaked out about what an addict I was. I hear that and think, “But I’m currently using somewhere between 1/4 and 1/2 of what I’ve been using for years…. Oh.”
You would have really judged me then. Oh.
The pain doctor waves his hand and says he doesn’t care how much I use. I need it. Use it. Yes, even while pregnant. Being in a lot of pain and in severe emotional distress is worse for my baby than pot in his well educated opinion. I appreciate that before he got his DO degree he was a pharmacist for years. He has strong opinions about medications. He thinks pot is the single safest option available to me.
I met with a genetic counselor. I really wish this dude was somehow a bigger part of my medical team. I thought he was so fucking nice. He asked a ton of questions and I went along with it. He started to give me the “We don’t recommend marijuana usage” spiel and I cut him off. “Let me explain why I use marijuana. Let me explain the ways I’ve tried to find a different route and let’s talk about the result of those tries.” When I was done he asked how much I take. I told him I’ve been consistent around 100mg/day for a while (although I have used more yesterday and today because my pain levels are up to 6/7 and I’m trying to not freak the fuck out about how my body feels). He scoffed and said, “Oh that’s a low dose. That’s nothing. No one should say anything to you about that.” He asked me if I used “any other recreational drugs” and I said–“I don’t use any recreational drugs while I’m pregnant” and I smiled. He visibly flinched and said, “You are right. I said that wrong.”
The differences in opinion are just…
I have been honest more than once and said that I’ve used recreational drugs when not pregnant but I plan my pregnancies carefully and I don’t use drugs when I’m trying to get pregnant. Err, which is accurate.
I wonder if part of why I feel like I “need” children is because these clean and sober periods are healthy for me and I don’t completely maintain them other than breeding/breast feeding. When my body is for me I treat it differently. When my body is a host… I’m a lot more careful. I care very much about making this a friendly place for my little parasites. I fucking adore my parasites. I live and breathe for them. Sometimes literally.
I don’t like me very much. But I like them a whole lot. And I like the way they look at me a whole lot. I can put up with not liking me in order to have that experience.
And I will show them a face that has been carefully schooled to show the emotion I want them to reflect instead of a face that reveals what I’m feeling. Because that is the deal. Children learn what you fucking model. If you want to see it back from your kids you have to do it and do it and do it and do it and do it even when you don’t want to.
When I was younger and a lot more ok with being a blatant bully I actively wanted my children to be afraid of me.
My kids are a little afraid of me. Not a lot. But they do see me as a person who… could lose control and they need to be prepared to back way off. I don’t feel proud of this. I feel like with helping Jenny to stop flinching around me… I have to earn that trust. I am not yet as controlled as I want to be. I’m getting way better but it’s still a work in progress.
I ask my kids if they think I will hit them when I’m angry. Their response has been some variation of, “I don’t think you will but I feel like you could.”
And that’s… you know… consistent with reality. I could. I’m bigger. I’m stronger. I’m a mean mother fucker. I was brought up in a world where shit rolls down hill. I was brought up to believe that children should be seen and not heard. I was brought up with the belief that if you cried from emotional pain you deserved to have people hit you until you were crying from real pain.
But I won’t.
Yeah. I have a raging volcano of anger and violence inside of me.
I don’t take it out on my kids.
I walk away. I take breaks. I segregate myself until I’ve got my shit together. I mean, I say some louder-than-necessary hostile sentences sometimes. Then I slap my hands over my mouth and walk away.
I don’t rant for long periods. I don’t denigrate my children. But yeah. There are times when I start absolutely screaming, “WHAT DID YOU DO? OH MY GOD!!! WHY DO YOU THINK THIS IS OK??!?!?! I AM SO ANGRY WITH YOU.” That’s usually around when I slap my hands over my mouth and walk away.
It’s not perfect. But I’ve come a long way.
I’m not perfect. I am not the best mother. I’m not sure if I’m a good mother in the abstract. I think I am overall a good mother to my children.
I defend their 4th trimester with a bloody sword. My children need to learn how to regulate their bodies in an environment with practically no stress. My children need to have their needs met as close to instantly as possible in the first few months. I will wear my back all the fucking way out wearing my babies.
We don’t come from a family of people who have healthy bodies or healthy minds. We have to put effort into building habits from birth to overcome the damage done to their genetic line through trauma and abuse.
My methods are not what everyone needs to follow. I sure as shit don’t think my methods are “general parenting”. I’m doing long-term therapy. Intergenerational trauma is a real god damn thing. It leaves serious marks on people. I believe that our government should be willing to just give big fat stipends to every parent who wants to spend a year bonding with their child. That should be a financially healthy choice for every parent. Because the fate of the nation would improve. Mental health, school performance…. all of these things are impacted by attachment.
I’m not saying that kids who go to daycare at 6 weeks cannot attach or have a healthy life. That’s not my point.
I’m saying that there are children who do well with a village approach. There are children who do better with having a very protective primary caregiver. I’m saying that some children need a lot of scaffolding to figure out how they fit into the wider world.
Every kid is different and every kid needs different things from their parents.
I have been offering my children school for years. “Do you want to go make more friends?” They have said every time, “No. I want to be with you.”
I have to just pray I’m not wrecking their lives, right?
Because how do you know? How do you “know” that your methods will work? How do you evaluate if your traditions/culture mesh with what will be expected of your children?
I think we all just kind of pray in our own way. Or we try not to think about it at all.
My daughter keeps saying that she “knows something is true if mom tells her”. I twitch and cringe. “Oh child. My facts get out of date. I sometimes misunderstand things I hear and then tell you the wrong thing. You need to double check the stuff I say. I’m not a perfectly reliable source.”
She… can’t deal with this yet. But I’m trying to plant the seeds.
I’m trying to get better about “here’s why I think this is true.”
I can certainly cite my sources and shit. I keep thinking that I should do a master list of the educational theorists I have relied on the most and talk about what I’ve gotten from different theories. To consolidate my thinking. What the fuck is my approach?
Oh a little of this and a little of that… err, I have to get my notes to remember which name goes with which theory. I am hilariously bad with names. But I could start writing paragraphs about the theories right now. But not tonight.
Hands hurt. Too many thoughts for organized scholarship. But clearly I miss academic study. I wonder how I should focus that with the writing that I do. I read and have read a gnarly cross section of books. I could try to put together a more formal paper. Just for myself. Because I am having a hard time with how little my brain is engaged in my life lately. I mean, I’m engaging my brain. That sounds worse than I mean it. But listening to my kids tell me allllllll about their (whatever) of the moment doesn’t use that big of a chunk of my processing.
And my house spends a lot of time talking about food. That doesn’t take much thought either.
I need to have a part of my brain that is working at a much faster rate so I don’t feel cranky and impatient. I’ve been really struggling to fill this gap lately. I’m so fucking tired. I hurt so much.
I’ve used sexual/romantic relationships to fill that sort of gap in the past. It certainly makes me feel more energetic. That’s not on the table. Ok. Masturbatory writing out of shit I’ve studied. Sure. Why not. What can it hurt (beyond my arms).
I think I’m trying to convince myself that I’m allowed to be my own authority.
I consult outside myself when I need active feedback on something I can’t see from my perspective… but I’m really fucking competent at deciding what is good or bad for me. It takes me a while. *cough*
But yet I reach for these opinions in my head. I had ended my relationship with former-psychiatrist thinking, “Maybe I’ll try again some day but for fuck’s sake not while breeding.”
Noah told me he doesn’t want me to try more psych drugs. He has to clean up the mess. He’s not up for more trials. He thinks I’m going to kill myself on a med trial.
Voices in my head.
I’ve had more than one medical provider say in a smirking way, “Wow. You really know how to advocate for yourself, don’t you?” I didn’t go back to see either of them.
You think you’re cute, don’t you?
I’m afraid of moving away from the first doctor who has been willing to talk to me. I’m scared of how expensive this shit is going to be. Oh god.
But the tests are finding a lot of low numbers that concern him. In areas that are normally elevated for pregnancy.
It’s kind of funny watching the doctor turn his head to the side and say, “You are in really great shape for someone who is… really not in good shape.” It’s such an amusing thing to try and parse in different ways. Oh the field trips my imagination goes on. La di da.
He doesn’t want to talk about exercise recommendations until after the testing is done. Because otherwise he’s pulling it out of his ass. It is… weirdly cool that a doctor can admit the polite version of “Shit I don’t know. But I’ll know after a whole bunch of work.”
Why am I awake tonight? I know why.
I am not G-d. I am not G-d. I am not G-d.
I can not save anyone. I can not help anyone other than my children, not really. And even my children I can only help to a point and then I’ll be hurting them. I’m on a timer. I can’t guarantee my children a good life. I can just promise that I will try and teach you physical skills and mannerisms that will help you to figure out being an adult. Even if being a kid is harder.
But good golly I have a hard time viewing my kids as having a harder life than average. Life isn’t an easy experience. If I tried to give them an easier experience than they are getting I’d probably be harming them in the long term.
Which isn’t to excuse bullying or anything like that. I just mean…
Oh a thing happened and that child is getting old enough to not want to be talked about in the same way and that means that when I have feelings about things I need to be vague and annoying. Hi. A child didn’t get what they wanted in a situation. Repeatedly.
Ok. Yeah. Welcome to life.
Child expected coddling. I uhhhh failed to deliver. I said, “Yup. That happens. Welcome to dealing with schools/camps/institutions. They will say what they need to say to move the herd along but they aren’t serious and they don’t care about you as an individual.”
I feel like an asshole. But that is what my experience has been as a professional educator, as a patient, as a student.
If I have 30 students in a class, I can’t hand hold through a lesson. Catch the fuck up.
It’s mean but true.You are always failing someone. Maybe you’d even be willing to handhold but the person can’t say they need it. Or can’t say how they need it and what you offer is useless.
That’s such a fantastically shitty feeling. Knowing that what you offer is… useless.
But here I go. Centering myself again. Well, this is my whine space.
I get to have my feelings here. They are ok.
I’m having a hard time with a thing I’m instinctively doing. I’m a gendering piece of shit. So in my head I keep thinking, “If I have an AMAB child… will I put him in a dress?” Because allll the baby clothes I’m getting are from little girls. I put my daughter in boy clothes when that was all the hand me downs I got for years.
I’m an asshole.
I don’t practice what I preach.
Dresses are convenient on diaper wearing babies. Why the hell not?!
You know, Franklin Roosevelt even grew up wearing dresses. I’m not declaring shit about anything about my child’s gender if they wear a dress. They are just following precedent. Or I’m weak sauce. I’m already weak sauce. This is internalized misogyny. Boy stuff is “good enough” for a girl but boys can’t have “girl” stuff? Which is also enforcing a binary opinion and haven’t I learned my fucking lesson yet?
No matter what I do I’m pushing an agenda.
Ready to flop.