between granite and cement

it’s hard right now. I have control issues; we all know this. but the current situation is wildly out control — and in general, not just out of my control.

I relied on an otherwise competent person to talk to people to whom he’s related (yeah, the anonymity’s lost now, lol) to get information on a potential solution to a rather large problem we have. he did not collect sufficient info from his father, and he apparently did not collect any info from his uncle.

and now we are stuck living (albeit temporarily) either in a situation we do not want or w people we’d rather not. we’re now chosing between a very small space w no internet and no Zero vs living w my parents.

had he collected sufficient information ahead of time, we’d be more empowered in this delimma. as it stand, however, he’s just put us into a tight corner.

I have been so angry w him over the last month or so. it just seems like one thing after another, one ball dropped and then another.

I’m trying to be as strong for and patient w him as he is for and w me. but he’s not making it easy.

rough times on Ranch James

few weeks ago, my dad had emergency brain surgery.

last night, I learned that someone important to me attempted suicide (and failed) about two weeks ago.

around the same time as all of this, my temp job told me they won’t be taking me on permanently. (I’m too creative, it seems. maybe I’ll write more about that later

and winter is arriving soon. which is always a HUGE threat on my physical and emotional healths.

hard times are not a-comin’. they’re already here.

rubber bands and anchors

oh, hello there.

do you hear that noise, too? you must. it’s absolutely deafening.

the cacophony of clutter crashing on top of you. the sound of hopes and dreams and wishes blowing right past your head, so quickly you sometimes cannot hardly even identify them.

and then that sensation.

the feeling of muck and sludge leaking into your ears and your nostrils and between your teeth, filling your mind to the brim with utter waste.

sure, I have friends who give me Spoons to excavate the trash from my head. but it all fills back in faster than I can bail.

and yes, I’ve learned tricks from doctors and specialists as to how to apply earplugs to prevent the clatter and carnage from getting past the drums. but these methods are porous and fallible, so the shit slinks in anyhow.

I do, however, have Old Friends who pretend not that they can help or heal. and their familiar voices are eerily soothing as they whisper into my ears fond memories of long ago.

alas, present trajectory remains forward, despite the anchors attempting to keep me in place and the rubber bands struggling to snap me backwards.

LaPorte, Danielle – “Desire Map for Living”

Danielle LaPorte again, this time posing eight quick question-answer pieces she presents in a very recent collection of short videos (like, less-than-five-minutes kind of short) as part of an IGTV series entitled “Desire Map for Living”.

below are my personal musings, with a link to each video that expounds on the highlighted question. it’s not much, but I’m just trying to get posting again — so have just some fucking patience with me. 😉

1] Even Deeper Gratitude

What am I taking for granted?

  • my intelligence: because of my intelligence, I am able to make improvements in my life and avoid making horrible mistakes.
  • MN public transportation: it really is a life-saver between my times of inability to drive and my times of disinterest in driving. and it’s a great system up here; one of the best in the nation.
  • the Sun: You glorious thing, You. welcome back to my life. I haven’t gone out and fully enjoyed You just yet. my apologies.

2] What I Trust

What do you know to be true right now?

  • I will never run out of cat hair, thanks to Zero.
  • I am granted unconditional love from Brian, Mum, and Tiger.
  • I am also granted love from FatherPerson, JennaLee, Sheila, and (as best as he can) Zero.
  • I have thus far always gotten back Up, despite the number of times I had already been knocked Down.
  • I am presently and usually exhausted — but I am not absolutely, constantly exhausted.

3] Reframing

What do you want that you already have?

  • more time: I am simply mismanaging the time I already have.
  • control over/in my life: I can (at least somewhat) easily alter many things in it right now — via a change in jobs, increased volunteer work, finding new MeetUp groups, discovering new places on my own, et cetera.

4] Feeling Anticipation

What is something upcoming that is presently causing you negative anticipation?

  • the Project: I am presently anxious, self-doubting, prematurely regretful, and prematurely exhausted.
    • I want to be successful and find something that will make me happy in the long-run.
    • going into the Project with confidence would encourage these results.
  • the Visit: I am pessimistic and resentful.
    • I want to enjoy myself and see this as an opportunity and not a requirement.
    • I should change my focus and mindset approach.

5] Unpleasurable Feelings

Make a list of negative feelings you can recall from a past event, then eclipse them with their contrasting positive.

  • weak: strong
  • out of control: in control
  • helpless: capable
  • mad: containable
  • petty: appreciative and wise
  • unimportant: valued

6] Inner Child Exercise

What does your Inner Child need to feel in each of the following areas of life?

  • relationship and society: my Inner Child (IC) wants to make a difference to others, to help and be of service to others. the goal is not to then become important to those people — but it is a great bonus by-product.
  • body and wellness: my IC wants to run and play, be active and enjoy that precise moment of life.
  • livelihood and lifestyle: my IC is not very needy. it just wants enough to survive somewhat comfortably.
  • creativity and learning: my IC loves to explore and learn and play. IC loves going on great adventures, or even find solutions to problems close to home.
  • essences and spirituality: my IC is connected to all things. an omni-relationship with all forces of life encourages my IC to keep on trucking in its own life.

7] Superhero Exercise

How does your Inner Superhero need to feel in each life areas?

  • relationship and society: my Superhero (SH) is dedicated steadfastly to being useful and helpful to both others and itself.
  • body and wellness: my SH is strong and capable, yet still limber and embracing of the possible. my SH takes good care of itself, without fretting over the minor stuff.
  • livelihood and lifestyle: my SH is comfortable and happy. it does not need much. and when it does have a need, it fulfills it promptly and confidently, without shame or anxiety.
  • creativity and learning: my SH may not have all the answers, but it at least tries to locate them. ever growing, ever willing to change for the better, my SH advances consistently as if in an RPG.
  • essences and spirituality: via its connection with the “local” population, the surrounding life forces, and both its natural and its man-man environments, my SH is able to aid all involved compassionately and effectively.

8] Future Self Exercise

How is your Future Self already feeling in each life area?

  • relationship and society: my FS has a strong social group again at whatever location its living, but still holds on to the important ties from its past.
  • body and wellness: my FS is still working on my body and my health. it has not given up hope on getting and feeling better.
  • livelihood and lifestyle: my FS is doing things it enjoys in its free time and during its work time. it appreciates and values its present career, rather than just tolerates it.
  • creativity and learning: my FS is still such an information- and learning-junkie. constantly researching and sharing what it learn, my FS has really started making a difference in the lives of others.
  • essences and spirituality: that same connection with all things stands strong in my FS. it uses this bond to grow in itself and to assist with the growth of others.

“The in-between place you’re in. It’s real.”

this wouldn’t be the first time I’ve reposted something that originated from Danielle Laporte.

the following is from “The in-between place you’re in. It’s real.” and it’s very apt for my current place in life.

Continue reading

changes of the Self

in August 2015, Brian and I moved from southern Louisiana, very near to the Gulf Coast, to the “great” white tundra of the Minneapolis, Minnesota — which is over 1,000mi (1,600+km) as the bird flies, or ~1,1200mi (~1,800km) as the car drives.

there were many reasons for this move: Brian found and earned a job that would at least incorporate his academic focus (very slightly so, we later fully learn) for a reasonable pay; I wanted to get away from my family drama; I wanted to get away from my paternal drama; I wanted to escape many of the acquaintances I had; I wanted to break free of previous obligations and social contracts I had; I want to explore the world/nation; I legitimately wanted culture shock; and … I wanted to try to recreate myself.

I managed to do so somewhat within the nearly four years I have been up here. I gained better habits and lost some worse ones — some instances of each by choice, and others by force or requirement. so with us discussing the potential success of Brian’s job hunts elsewhere in the nation, it’s time to review these changes and reflect on them.


Who I Was in Louisiana

  • sociable, person enthusiast: I was social butterfly, and often the center of attention.
  • responsible, in charge: I was constantly organizing events or hosting, rarely delegating and actually really being just a participant.
  • empathetic: I pretended to be very kind and compassionate, almost as if I was genuinely interested in other people.
  • adventurous: I sought out wild opportunities and places (granted, I was restricted to the local) in hopes of an absurd escapade.
  • inquisitive, curious: I always wanted to know more about everything, was often researching random facts or topics, and was always asking questions.
  • pillar of strength: The backbone or glue or a group or the unflinching emotional support of a given person — it was more often than not me. Though, naturally, I relied on one (or at least, very very few).
  • energetic, loud, hyper: I had boundless energy, and could go from one activity or event to another with no break necessary.
  • alcohol lush, drunkard: I was the group’s (usually) happy drunk. Any unfinished drinks?– everyone knew I would empty them.
  • giving 110%: if I did anything, I did it to my full capacity — including my faults. moderation was not a concept I understood.

Who I Was in Minnesota

  • sociable, person enthusiast: I still embodied this, but to a lesser degree. I was at several parties wherein I actively avoided calling the group’s attention to myself.
  • responsible, in charge: I let up on this a lot too. I was, in fact, tagging along more often than note with the already created plans of others. Brian has said I take on more of an “okay guys, I’ll join in on your thing” approach than I did back home.
  • empathetic: I did this still too, but I lessened it. if I had too few Spoons on a given day, I didn’t listen to all the bullshit others spouted, but instead scurried away quickly.
  • adventurous: I lost this drastically. part of the limitation on this was winter exists up here from October to now (April) — by which I mean, it is so cold outside it is physically painful.
  • inquisitive, curious: I still had my curiosity, but I didn’t really act on it much. I was too tired all the time to put forth the effort to research anything.
  • pillar of strength: I became a Pillar of some sort for several people up here. but I made to have them understand I was not on-call for them figuratively or literally. even when hanging out IRL, I would sometimes be distance.
  • energetic, loud, hyper: this depleted greatly too. I took breaks when I needed them (even while volunteering), I actively scheduled “Recovery” time in my Google calendar, etc.
  • general lush: I still drank way my than I should. and my first social connections up here were made via a kink community, I was none for my input and presence there (not so much actual physical involvement, granted, due to Brian’s requests).
  • 90-100%: I gave less of myself to other people and things. sure I still “did my best”; but I help back when necessary, so as not to over-extend or exhaust myself.
  • open about my Crazies: I was much more open about my struggles here than I was back home — which is saying something, because I was a major advocate back home. by embracing my faults in an early meeting of someone (other than of employers, lol!), I set the stage such that if I fuck up in one way or another (my bad memory, my low Spoon, etc.), no one is surprised or offended.
  • patience for bullshit: normally, I would just let people say shit no matter how dumb. but now, depending on the person, I either address the fallacies I see or I just walk away. I’m not paid to give you my attention, and in most cases, I don’t even care — so fuck off.

Who I Hope to Be in the Future

this is where we are now. I’ve already begun some of these changes (as you will see below), though I have not been in many situations wherein I can challenge or test the adjusted approach or reaction. so we’ll see how it goes.

  • sociable, person enthusiast: I think this is a skill set I still want to maintain and occasionally practice, as it is very useful for making connections for future social or occupational concerns. however, I do not need to make it the core of my identity any longer.
  • responsible, in charge: again, this is useful if I maintain it as a skill and not as a personality trait.
  • empathetic: I think this is at a fairly good level currently. I am empathetic to gain the favour and affection of others, but I don’t drain my resources on pretending to care.
  • adventurous: Brian has mentioned to me multiple times recently how this is obviously incredibly important to me. and he’s right. I do need to incorporate this into my life more.
  • inquisitive, curious: I’ve started getting this back already. I’m getting my Productivity Projects going again, so that’s nice.
  • pillar of strength: I need to be careful who I befriend. granted, you can’t tell right away — but up here, most of my early friends, I have learned, were exceptional needy. and I just can’t do that anymore. not for everyone all of the time.
  • energetic, loud, hyper: I need to balance this. I don’t like how low-key I’ve become, but I like that I’m learning self-care.
  • sober: another one I’m already well started into. as Brian says, he likes being in full control of his faculties — I’ll adopt that saying as I’m so all over the place already, I can’t risk giving up anything.
  • 90-100%: I think I’m at a healthy point for this one. I try harder than most anyone there, but I’m going to break my back for you. I just have to continue this when we move.
  • open about my Crazies: again, setting up my faults and being open about my issues early one makes it less difficult and more accepted in the long-run.
  • patience for bullshit: I’m still learning the balance on this one. I’m ignoring my father’s stupid political comments, literally not even acknowledging that he said them sometimes. so I like that. but avoidance can only work on some people; I need to figure out my approach for the other folk.
  • solo fun: branching from “adventurous”, I need to learn to have fun by myself. I spent so much time in Louisiana organising collections of people, I never learned how to go out on my own. I want to grow into that before we relocate again so that I can better explore the city and learn about it on my own time, instead of waiting for someone else.
  • us vs them: I have always had an inclination to the “not our kind” mindset, as much as I hate it. working in the political landscape recently, I developed a quicker reaction to it. I also developed a stronger sense of unity, conversely, in my internal effort to fight the aforementioned propensity. but wherever we go, I want to continue getting this out of my system.
  • volunteering: I stopped volunteering as much here as I did back home. in part due to my parents not being here with scout trouble in which I grew up, and in part to my constant transportation issues (RE weather or no license). but wherever we go, I need to start doing that more.

you may be noticing I didn’t include a terrible number of “bad” character traits. that’s because I like to think I am quite aware of those and am already working on fixing them — trust issues, self-hatred, anhedonia, anger issues, superiority complex, a general impatience, misanthropy, etc. I mean, that list I can make in a hot second!

but this was just a very quick, light assessment of my recent growths and how I want to be as positives, a side of myself on which I’m rarely focused.

if you know me IRL and have insight or comments on anything, I’d love to hear them. I’m trying to ensure my self-perception includes at least the consideration of others’ perceptions of me. so it would be beneficial for me to hear — both the good and the bad.

“go all Henry David Thoreau up in here”

I think I need a vaccay from people. like, from all humans. even Brian. go all Henry David Thoreau up in here or something.

I used to camp all the time. year round, and as much as possible. I would volunteer with organizations too. a lot of my time used to go to volunteerism.

I mean, I have a pessimistic, natural inclination to assume the worst about a given individual. but I used to at least allow them enough room to hang themselves. these days, I can hardly wait to pull a handle of judgment to drop people to a doom they possibly didn’t rightly deserve.

and those aforementioned communes with nature or surrounding myself with heartfelt people — they would reset the innate hatred I have within. they would fill me with beauty, awe, and hope. and then I had the energy to go tackle the harsh reality that is life.

but with no vacations to remind myself what matters, with no groups or friends also struggling to focus on the light, I feel … I just feel hopeless, adrift. like I’m just barely staying afloat in life instead enjoying the waves at a beach.

I will make it a point to find a volunteer group again. I will make it a point to go camping again soon (once it fucking warms a little, because I am a pussy in the cold). and I will make it a point to write again … even if there is no one remaining to read anything.