Wednesday, February 22, 2017


It's clear that over the last 5 years I have developed the ridiculous propensity to dwell on negative aspects of my being and events that have hurt me, instead of moving forward and past it all.  I haven't changed, even though I know exactly what has happened and why they happened, and what should be done, and what I should do to be healthy: Not dwell.

And for anyone who has read even 1/4 of my blog posts, the things I know and should know are completely obvious.  I'm not so difficult to understand...  (It isn't!  Right?  I don't think it is, but people around me seem to find me confusing, and because of that, I allow myself to fall into confusion and self-doubt?  I don't know how I float in denial, as I do, when I am a smart lady).


Usually when you write about your life, it means you have really thought it through, or you at least done some analysis and thinking about life.  I don't know what the Hell I have been doing.  

I mean, I could quickly summarize all that haunts me, eats me alive, and makes me really sad in a list.  No strain of mind would be required to write down 10-15 single words, one under the other, that represent all that I have dedicated the past years of my existence straining my mind over, to the point of insanity. 


Here's something:  Insanity is thinking other people will change; if you just squinch your eyes tight and wish it--just wish that at that very moment they would just fucking get it, and do everything just right... just right...  or do what you really need them to do--they will suddenly understand.  You.  Me.

That's craziness.  I engage in it daily.  I don't think about myself, but instead, I imagine that I have made people around me the way they are, and they can be fixed if I really, really... need them to...  But I am not letting myself grow or change, as I wait for people I believe should be something more, or do something differently.  I blame myself when another day goes by and I haven't successfully mind-melded them into understanding everything.  No...  Just understand me.
I guess that's what I want to believe and know.  And I can't wish someone in my life, as I imagine it: to float along on a soft cloud, through the tunnels of my brain, seeing clearly who I am, who I was, what I think, who I want to be, and have their departure from this ride to be enlightening and make everything all better.  If I don't understand myself, should I expect anyone to understand me?  If I actually, truly do understand myself, and also know that I am not this black curtain of secrecy and impenetrable darkness, yet realize...  Yeah.  (I know no one reads these, so I have completely degraded to writing in a stream of consciousness)... Yeah. I blame myself, if anyone in my life doesn't see me, or know me, or understand me, or know how much I need help, or need them, or need... something... else...   


So, in that way, I've absolutely lead myself into an unhealthy cycle of depression and self-abuse.  I can even say that as I type this moment--even with that list of words I speak of, clear and blaring--I am still dwelling on every single item, while also trying to think of how I can spin this into a post about growth and happiness, and self-worth and self-awareness.  You know, like I was getting better; like I am getting better; like I have figured out how to move on with my life, past anything that has kept me stuck.  Nope.  I might be? I haven't.  

And the thing is, the more I keep doing this to myself, the more I hurt everyone in my life.  I'm not just self-destructive, I have a wide blast range and no one is safe.

It should be easy, like a computer, or an email account, in some ways.  When will I delete?  Why can't I delete?  Why do I keep everything all here?  It's all in my head.  I keep everything.  I keep everything.  I go back and reread, relive, every damn thing that I know hurts the most to see again and again.  When will I let go?  

Sometimes, I convince myself that keeping everything filed away, reminds me of the things I don't want to ever experience again, or that it keeps me grounded if I don't try to hide things away from myself, or pretend for everyone else.  That way of thinking has worked out great for me. Absolutely.  Not.  Absolutely not.  Reminding myself, or having visual and linguistic reminders of anything I should forget, have only made the past completely palpable.  I go through all the emotions, and end up freshly destroyed, newly smashed to pieces.  
I do this daily.  Pretty much daily.  I would say, most certainly daily.

What kills me is the... what?  The stuff?  The freaking stuff I keep replaying, have nothing to do with the most important people and goal in my life right now.  I focus on stuff that holds me back or keeps me from being fully aware of now and what I need to do and should do.  The list of shit is overriding the absolutely most important words to me:  
Michael and Stella.  

I should be able to type my name and not erase it from that list, huh?  I did, but I deleted it and added health.  And that's the problem.  When I can put my own fucking name on the list of things that I care about and that are important to me, and actually believe it, than I think I can actually get past the stuff that makes me insane. 

That makes it my problem, and mine alone: Something I need to fix.  I need to fix it.  I like things fixed and all better and feeling better, but I keep forgetting about fixing myself.  I keep forgetting that I'm worth fixing.  I sound like a whiney, self-centered teenager.  Aaaa.  That's how I think.  Don't ever do that to yourself.  Never get into this mind-fuck and negativity, that I have let spread through me, and take over.  It's selfish to have let it grow and entwine itself in my insides.  I fed it.  I nurtured it.  

So now, will I stop?  

Alcohol doesn't help.  That is a now.  A now I know, and won't let happen anymore.  That's no longer a not yet.  It became an immediately.
Shouldn't doctors figure this shit out?  Why do I trust other people to tell me who I am, and what I'm worth, instead of feeling any of that within myself?  Does anyone?  I mean, does anyone just...  right...  normal people feel purpose and drive and confidence and dignity.  I just want to be normal.  I'm glad no one reads this.  It's a diary, isn't it.  Where I can feel sorry for myself, and write about it.  Sad me.  Sad me.  

Yes, this is just becoming another post about how I'm fucked up, and I can't stop being fucked up.  I guess I should shut the fuck up and try to do something to get myself un-fucked up and stop writing essays about my plight of sadness and depression.   

Friday, February 10, 2017

Mother Earth

Underwater, consuming all my kind
Destined for alterations
And my mind ain't aligned for her daughter
I know I'm mother earth, I see the weather

Banks' new album, "The Altar," is amazing;  It kills me, she is so talented, and speaks so clearly to what I feel so often.  Her talent isn't only appreciated by me, because I connect to her lyrics and sentiments, but it is alarming and alluring, when I hear her music, and I feel like she is crawling through my mind, and then pouring out all its contents in a liquid, beautiful voice.  Yes, she has a melancholy tone in many songs, but through even those lyrics, I think she is truthful and hopeful and gives a voice to some emotions, and experiences, and struggles it's difficult for many people to know what to do with, or how to handle.  I mean I certainly can't sing.  I can't compose music.
I do write.  

Honestly, I'm definitely not writing very well.  I give my computer screen the most scathing looks when I go back and view writing I posted hastily, not revising or editing it first. 
😠 "Are you kidding?  What is that freaking sentence?  That's not even a sentence."  

I'm a alone a lot, so I talk to myself.    

So I'm not gonna cover up the freckles on my faces
I covered all the bases

Follow me to my bed
'Cause every time you fall, I'll be holdin' your head up
And when will you get tired of feeling bad?
And every time you fall, follow me

Follow me to my bed
'Cause every time you fall, I'll be holdin' your head up
And when will you get tired of feeling bad?
And every time you fall, follow me

I know I'm repetitive in my writing, too.  It's pretty clear that I find music to be healing, or at least one way I distract my brain or disappear into another world when I feel "bad."  Badly?  (I'll have to take English as a Second Language Grammar classes before I teach again... If I do... and of course I was quoting the song.  I'm just messing with you.  I just don't try my best all the time).  

I discovered Banks through a Victoria's Secret TV ad, but Tori Amos truly carried me through the most difficult times in my life.  I am listening to her now.  Spark.  Sam used to mess with me, singing the first line of the song over and over again.  He doesn't listen to her music, really.  Like, never.  So that does seem like a funny kind of way to open a song.  Of course, I wrote a story that began with the sentence, "I dreamed I had sex with Jesus...", which I had to read to  large intellectual audience, after being deemed the top fiction writer at UVM in 2000.  It certainly wasn't a contest I entered.  All advanced fiction writing classes voted on their favorite pieces written by classmates, not knowing why we were making decisions or distinctions in any way.  Later the department professors got together and chose amongst the lot of them.  The piece that was voted as the top piece by me, was actually one I knew I couldn't read aloud.  I thanked the students in the class for holding my writing in such high esteem, particularly when most of them were all graduating with Liberal Arts/English Majors, and I was not.  I am sure my cheeks flushed, and I teared up, and I know I thanked them for thinking I was worthy of such an elite honor... 

But, before I could say anything else, my professor, Philip Baruth (A wonderful teacher.  A wonderful man), said, "Joanna, a moment," and directed me into the hallway.  It was an evening class.  2 or 2 1/2 hours long, once a week.  The hallways were just lit fluorescently, and it seemed like a more vulnerable time to be... anywhere, I guess... night...  
 I started to cry and said, "I'm sorry.  I just can't read that story aloud.  I can't...  I..."

He said, "I understand.  I know.
I'm sure I mumbled something about it being kind of based on truth, and I didn't think I could read it, really.  "I knew that.  I needed you to know, before you said anything to the class about not wanting to read, that you actually placed first and second with your stories." He said. "Your other short story, "20%" was voted as the second place byyour classmates, and was chosen as first place by the faculty."  I felt so scared and powerful at the same time, but I knew which one he meant.  Oh goodness..  I had to read about having sex with Jesus in front of an audience.  Rape or sex with Jesus?  Rape or sex with Jesus?  Gosh.  I was honored but the other story talked about blow jobs too.  My God.  I mean.  My Jesus.  Holy Jesus.  I should not be blasphemous.  I never say those things out loud.  Shit.  Okay.  I remember agreeing to read the blow job story.  I'll just call it that.  I was the Top Fiction Writer and I was going to stand at a podium in a very formal setting...  Jesus.  I was exposing the frailty and strength of Femininity in that story.  It wasn't about a victim.  

He's so hollow
My baby mated blind until he wasted fate
So I'm left behind until he curse my sorrow
But I know I'm mother earth, I see the weather

I don't know how I ended up writing about all that, when I meant to write about Banks, other than my sister bringing me a folder of my college writing she had found in our house to me a few days ago.  I re-read the rough draft of the story I ended up reciting--performing--for the gathering, and I started laughing, but also understood how complex and sad the story was.  It wasn't profane or blasphemous.  It was really sad, actually.  But it was also really funny. 

 I remember hearing very flowery examples of various forms of fiction styles, and then someone read a poem right before it was my turn, and it had something to do with oatmeal. I looked at Professor Baruth in horror, and whispered, "I can't read my story after this."  An empty plea, it was.  He said, "You can, and you will."  I did walk up to the podium and looked out at the ridiculously serious, formal, and in the case in some of the college students in attendance, bored audience, "My story has nothing to do with oatmeal, but here it goes..."  And I read, and I looked up at the audience at points, pausing, my head held high, and I knew I deserved to be called the best. I didn't need anyone to hold my head up, once I started reading, because I became the voice of the story, and it was brilliant and beautiful. I read it like I hadn't even written it myself.  I read, and part of the story was so deeply imbedded in me, I could say the sentences, while looking directly at the people who were sitting in the fancy, upholstered rows of chairs in the carpeted reception room, and see their faces.  I wasn't scared to see their faces.  I needed to see their faces.  I needed to see.

Yes, the audience laughed at the funny parts, and no one looked bored, and I actually did sing Loretta Lynn lyrics at one point; I could barely leave the reception room once it was over.  I had a special seat in the front of the room and as a few other readers went up the podium after me, I knew they were looking at me, and I felt proud, but also ashamed.  I looked down at my bare legs, and Mary Jane high heels.  I was behind the podium, as one of the presenters.  My professor was there, next to me.  I'm glad he was because I kept looked at him with an expression that I am sure expressed mortification and doubt, up until I read, and when I walked back to my seat, he hugged me, and I was suddenly terrified again.  I just did that thing?  That was me?

I tried to focus on the people reading their own stories, or expository writing.  I mean, the third place reader, was able to present, since I had chosen not to read one of my stories.  I chose hers as first place, actually, and I thought she deserved to have her story heard.  I watched each person at the podium intently, knowing people were looking at me.  I felt it.  I knew it.  If I let my eyes wander to the crowd, I would make eye contact with people who didn't know me, and I didn't know, yet I had exposed myself to them, and they thought they did... know me...  

People stopped me over and over to tell me how much they enjoyed my story, and how talented I was. Huh?  My "performance" was quite a departure from any other that day.  I knew that.  I just wanted to run home... Well, walk, since I was wearing fancy shoes.  But I just wanted to breathe.  And drink.  God, I wanted to drink.  My roommate and best friends went out that night and a guy actually came up to me at a bar and said, "Whoa, you're that girl!  You read the story about blowjobs.  Oh, wow.  
"Yup, that was me."
"I didn't mean that to sound... I mean, it was really good, like you are a great writer, I just have to say that most guys want girls to swallow."  

Anyway, reading the story just a few days ago, I understand now how talented I once was.  It was really well written.  It was perfectly written.  It was sad and funny, and didn't allow a reader to sink into one emotion before being jolted into another.  I still can't believe I read it aloud, though.  I was brave once.  I was brave.

So I won't let you pull up in all of my safest places
I, I covered all the bases
Follow me to my bed
Follow me to my bed

'Cause every time you fall, I'll be holdin' your head up
And when will you get tired of feeling bad?
And every time you fall, follow me

'Cause every time you fall, I'll be holdin' your head up
And when will you get tired of feeling bad?
And every time you fall, follow me

Am I sad too often? I have fallen?  I often feel like I fell a long time ago.  I don't know if anyone can hold my head up.  

Thursday, January 19, 2017

Los Santos

I'm a character.
My character is an animated, video-game version of me, and my husband spend time with that me when he's stressed.  (Lord knows I can be a stressful entity when I'm PMDD)
.  He created a female protagonist for the storyline which involves a whole lot of crime and driving around, in the fictional Los Santos, "located in California." And, unlike my real life, (I can't drive right now, and I spend almost every day in this darn house), When Sam assumes the virtual version of me, he is not even isolated to the couch in our living room.  It's an online, multiplayer world, full of users from all over the world.

My Grand Theft Auto V character is so much cooler than I am.  She has tons of expensive cars, clothes, and she is extremely active.  She is never in bed--not even for sleeping--and she is never wearing yoga pants or pajamas.

She's pretty too.  She has blonde hair, styled in a ponytail, with bangs and layers that fall out around her face, like my hair does.

Sam created her. He introduced me to her the other week.  I got to pick out the outfit she would wear for her next mission, and I found her closet seriously lacking, however I was surprised she did kind of look like me.  I mean... it was weird.  She has a long face, and pointed chin like mine, I said.  He told me how he could adjust the face shape and her nationality so it fit closely to my own face. She has my eye color.

Hmmmm...  Computer generated me has a pretty dark tan.  I am not so tan.  And her waist is thinner; the fake kind that dips way in...  There aren't really any options for creating a body that isn't a bit hooched up, when it comes to females in video games.  Create your perfect cyber girl...  What would her body look like?
Virtual me has big boobs, a tiny waist, and curved hips.  Hey, I'm good with that.

"She has venus dimples, like yours," Sam showed me.

Can you make her waist a little thicker, add a c-section scar, or, like, stretch marks on her stomach? Oh, just kidding.  

Blue Face...
I got pulled in.  Darn it.  She now has a closet full of outfits.  (I'm pretty sure I actually need red leather pants in real life).  Sam let me direct a shopping spree, once I realized the outfits he had put together were either bulky-tactical, or mismatched-sexy-secretary-hooch-fest.  Ah yes, I am the one who made sure she had a few pairs of skinny jeans, some black leather leggings, black LB platform heels, basic black stiletto booties, and plain (various colored) fitted tees that would match the multitude of random leather jackets in her in her closet.  Yes! I felt the need to round out her wardrobe!  Yes, even though seeing the entire virtual world which Sam was living in whenever he needed to "de-stress" involved a sexier, digitized version of me was disturbing.  And yes, the least I could do was give direction in a proper wardrobe, and tell him that a white, French-style beret went with nothing in the closet... nothing...

And that's all.  He plays that game a lot.  I only watched him "play" that one time, when he introduced me to the character.  He plays when he needs to unwind, which feels like it probably shouldn't include me or the kids.

At least that me wears stylish virtual outfits now?

(Update:  1/22/17
Michael decided that the character should not just be a woman of crime and fashion and had her open an import/export business, in which she is CEO and only employee, it appears, although I do know she has an assistant, and wears very professional business attire on the job.  From his yelling while he is actually playing the game, or "working on the business operations," it seems like there are some difficulties, like losing shipments, however, I'm glad he wanted me to be more industrious and law abiding.  Previously it seemed like I was stealing a lot of cars, [police cars, even], and just driving poorly around the city, and blowing shit up in leather pants and 5 inch heels.  But I also realized, though he had good intentions, my son was playing GTA.  I told Sam I was going to smash the PS4 to pieces if he kept letting our children play games rated for teenagers.

I haven't smashed it yet.   Do I exist beyond a virtual reality that I don't even get to be a part of?  I don't know.  I don't know.)