Wednesday, August 10, 2011

The List is Posted

Okay, I just printed out The List of Sanity and stuck it to the wall above the computer. I keep wandering around muttering 'I don't know what to do,' but really I do know. So well, I made a list. Maybe what I should DO is follow my own advice.

So, let's see... what on this list *have* I been doing? Let's get a little more positive here. I have been listening to music, eating fairly decently, connecting and more or less journaling. Okay. That's something anyway. I feel like I need to do some serious creative play... as that really is the key for me. And learning. So, some new art project that doesn't have to be sold or marketed would be healing I think. No I know that. But what...

What. Ever.

Okay. Something has to change here. It's getting ridiculous, this cave thing. It's pretty much taken over my life... I now am barely functional and it seems looking back like it's been a couple years of this. Zero motivation. It's almost maddening. Well, wait... if I really couldn't stand it, I'd change it. Right? Yeah. So, I have been looking at why I am so still and unproductive as a default state these days. And what keeps coming to mind is a time in my life around the age of 10. That's when I started my depression I think... and the depressing behaviors of The Cave.

Back when I was about 10 yrs old was when my world started getting weird and painful. My parents separated for the second and last time. My dad immediately moved in his secret girlfriend and her kid, and the bunch of us moved to another town. That time was like torture. I remember waking up and crying when I would hear my dad leave for work. My (eventually) step-sister was a total bully and fucked with us all the time. My step mother was also mean and strict. My dad mostly ignored us.

So when Mom decided to move back to the midwest, we two kids went with her... and I was relieved. Until I started Jr. High as that weird kid from Cali and new string of tortures. Dad decided he didn't like us far away and so didn't pay support. We were very poor and it was such a difficult time for my Mom too.

During that time, I see now that I got very depressed and never really came out of it. The behaviors are the same... I would hide out in the house and eat. Get home from school and it was a game of how much junk can I eat before Mom gets home. I catch myself doing the same thing now. When I'm home alone, I can eat for lengths of time and not even notice. I've replaced the TV with the computer... but the feelings are the same. Boredom, sadness, lone... loneliness.

Oops, just broke down and cried there. I guess we are getting somewhere with this line of thought.

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Back Again

Back in The Cave and right on time. Ha. Oh dear Awakening blog, I have been thinking about you...

You know, I have a whole different outlook this winter. I know I'm cave-dwelling, but I'm not depressed at all. On the contrary, I'm happy and content as I could be. That means I've been ignoring the list of sanity completely. Which is dumb, but I guess it just doesn't seem pressing, since I feel fine. Yes, dumb. Because who knows how I'll feel after a few more weeks of this.

It's startling how quickly the cave opened up really. My work dried up, as it does this time of year... and the weather changed almost instantly. Boom! Cave.

So my big problem now is motivation. I have plenty of work projects to keep my busy through my down time... not paying gigs necessarily, but still important work that I have plenty of time to do. But I have zero enthusiasm for these projects, which is tripping me out a bit. I've been exercising and pumping myself full of caffeine, but no bueno. It's like pulling teeth to get myself to do ANY responsible act right now. I even rush at the last minute to get the house cleaned up before my hubby gets home. So lame.

So I guess now the big thing is to somehow motivate myself before I get depressed at my lack of ambition... and thus at the end of the winter, my lack of action for months. Just like every year at this time.

Man, it's hard to be me.

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Midwest Healing Attack

So, I'd like to follow up on that post about dealing with old hurts from living in the midwest for a time. Things have progressed quite nicely. And, dare I say, cosmically.

Of course, I wrote that post in the midst of my angst (pretty obvious I suppose), since then I have mellowed out all the way about my brother's move. Once I figured out why I was so upset, I was able to chill. So I no longer cry or get sad at all about their move... in fact, many other things have happened since to force me to be nicer to that state and my memories of it.

First, as I may have mentioned before, at the same time my brother is driving a uhaul across 3 states to his new home, I too will be setting out for my own cross country adventure. Ending in the same state, where I will be vending at a craft fair there for the first time. I recently was able to add another venue to my visit, so now my few local friends and my brother's many, not to mention my Mom's friends and our relatives, are all promoting and talking about my visit and my craft business debut.

A few other random connections have happened as well... even my mother was impressed by the timing of these.

First, a writer from CNN was doing a story on Facebook and class reunions... does it help or hurt attendance. Funny, but when the article ran, my interview made up the first half of it. All about how I hated it there, ran back to CA at 18, and now live a happy arty life here. And most importantly, how Facebook forced me to remember the friends and good times I did have, many of which had been blocked out of my mind in favor of a general bad memory of the entire experience.

Then, one morning, I woke up to find a message from a pottery lady who works in the same state, saying she loves my handmade goods and I should stop by her studio on my way through this summer. How nice! I was flattered that she new about me and my trip at all... I started looking up her studio location, and on the front page of her website was my name! I had won her monthly drawing for a free piece of pottery. She hadn't mentioned that at all... hahaha. Later, someone from her studio contacted me for my mailing address. So, I'm not sure which came first, the winning or the noticing. Odd timing nonetheless.

Also, as I mentioned, during the time all this was happening... I connected with the group that does a weekly summer market in the same town. My mom suggested I check into it, and the info said the vendors are to be local. I happened to email them with my situation the day of their board meeting, so they would discuss it that night. Meanwhile, on facebook, I sent out messages to anyone I thought could put a good word in for me... and so did my brother. Not sure if they helped, but I was invited to participate in the end.

Now, these things are not earth shattering in themselves, but they all happened within a week of eachother. So you see how it might have felt a bit um... boogly. It's like the whole of the state is getting together to force me to heal.

It's working.

Monday, May 3, 2010

The Prophecy Fulfilled!

Yay!  How do I start this one without sounding like a nut? Bah, who knows... ok well it all started last October. I was at a little craft fair and there was a booth doing tarot & palm readings. I'm very interested in tarot and have my own deck, but rarely have I had my own cards read. Curious, I paid my $20 and sat down at a little card table with a soft spoken young lady.

I was a little leery, so I was careful to volunteer as little info as possible. In short, she blew me away. She honed right in on my key issues and I was pretty floored by the whole thing.

But, the one thing that has stuck in my mind since then, was the prediction that in about 5 months (that's now) something would happen to improve my $$ situation this year... a lot. Since then, I've been wondering how that might happen. Hoping, of course, that my business will really take off this year. But I had a feeling there would be some kind of windfall, though I couldn't guess where that might come from. I don't have any rich relatives. My father might come into some money from a settlement soon... but I have no reason to think he will share it.

In my pondering this over the months, I decided to pick a number to focus on. I have regularly visualized $8000 written in my checkbook ledger. I don't know why I picked that number, but it seemed not out of the realm of possibility.

Still, as the months have gone on... having been my work off-season, my finances continued to dwindle to nearly nothing. I still believed in this 'windfall' but it seemed even less touchable somehow, with not even a whiff of where this might come from...

Until yesterday.

I received a phone call from my mother. Even though all of her children are now adults, she feels the need to keep gifts even between the 3. She's always done this. If she kicks down something to one of us, such as tickets to Vegas for my little brother... the other two of us get Christmas gifts worth the same amount. Stuff like that.

Well, this particular occasion, she explained how she had decided to forgive my youngest brother's debt to her, as he has just bought a house. Then she decided to gift her car to my other brother when he goes to live with her. Apparently, the value of each of these gifts equals $7500... which I will receive in cash. Whaaa?? yes! Of course, I protested that it was too much and unnecessary. But she said the other gifts didn't cost her anything really, and thought we could use the cash for our upcoming wedding etc. Ok then... if that's what you want. Shock and awe.

Add to this the fact that I have almost exactly $500 in my bank account right now... and you see. The prophecy has been fulfilled.

And I can't even express the gratitude and blessings I feel right now.

There's a sign on the side of a barn near Laytonville, CA that always makes me smile... in giant black letters it says, "Don't forget the magic!"  Indeed.

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

How to Forgive an Entire State

Oh my... when do we really heal? I guess it takes a lifetime to get over some parts of our lives. I don't know. It irritates me to be dealing right now with things that happened 20+ yrs ago, things I thought I were pretty much past. I guess this shows me AGAIN... unresolved issues have a way of coming back. You may have *thought* they were resolved, but what the hell do you know anyway?

Well my issue right now is pretty weird to me, and how it surfaces is weirder. My brother and his little family have announce they are moving back to the state where he grew up. It's part finances, part family... they just want to give it a shot somewhere they think they can move ahead and be happy. Sweet. I'm all for that.

I also lived there for a time, though not as long as my brother... and my experience was markedly different from his. When we moved there I was about 12 and he was 4. Our parents had just divorced and we moved to be close to our mother's family. Moving from the bay area of CA to the center of the Midwest, well, culturally it couldn't have been more different. And while we were surrounded by extended family (they all live in one town), neither of us ever felt a part of that family. Still don't.

In short, my 6 years living there was pure pain and torture. I thank poetry and meditation for keeping me from going completely nutso... rather than barely functional as I was. It was close sometimes. But I made it to 18 and immediately fled back to CA where I continue to flourish. 

Recently I have reconnected with some friends from high school, and it's done plenty to remind me of the fun times I did have there. And jeesh, I left there 20 yrs ago... I go back to visit my mom every year or two, but over time my hatred for the area has subsided to a dull dislike.

At least that's what I thought. Until my brother announced his relocation to the place... well, it's weird. I can't stop crying whenever I think about it. At first I figured I just needed to get over the shock of it. But I've known for weeks now, and it hasn't backed off. I don't just tear up a little either. I sob. It's been freaking me out a bit.

A) Because I really do wish them well. Of course I'm sad to see them go out of driving range... but I currently only see them a few times per year. That will probably not change much.

and B) Because I couldn't figure out why I was freaking out so bad. It's coming completely from deep inside... not a result of thinking this or that about the move. Just pure emotion.

So yesterday I sat down and really contemplated what's happening... first just trying to ID the emotions I've been feeling when I start to freak out. And what I can equate the feeling to is a break up. I feel dumped. Not in my rational mind, of course, but just purely the emotions. It's part jealousy and part abandonment, I guess. That's the only way I can describe it.

And when I tried to translate that into the situation (because it didn't' make a bit of sense at first)... it comes back to my feelings of anger toward (my experience in) the state itself. I have always had a sort of Us vs Them attitude about it... my brother is now switching sides. My side is pretty lonely now, and not only that but I'll have to visit the enemy camp more often.

Somehow this has dug up my resentment toward the state. And if I'm going to be ok with my bro switching sides, I'm going to have to adjust my view of Them being the Enemy. To put it simply, I have to forgive the state for abusing me. That's exactly it. I suffered and nobody came to my aid... I felt abused and abandoned and maybe I never realized exactly what I felt until now.

What's shocking to me is that I didn't know I still felt so strongly about it.

This whole experience is amazing to me.

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Now I am 40

Ok, yeah... that's a good title I guess. I am 40. ha. I was saying to my little brother who just had his first kid (the day before my birthday!)... that the difference between being 39 and being 40 is similar to the difference between being pregnant and having a child. You know it's coming, but the actual jump is pretty surreal and trippy. You're in your 30s, in your 30s, blah blah... boom! 40!

I had a great birthday week. Fabulous. Full of friends and celebrations and neato gifts... I took walks and read and hung out with myself in positive ways. I really thought hard about what turning 40 means to me, since I seem to be so conflicted or affected by it. I decided it's really a door to the adult part of my life. I mean, I spent all my teens and 20s seeking and figuring myself out... then much of my 30s trying to accept the faults that 'figuring out' didn't fix. Now it feels like time to drop all that and face forward. Move on. Do some shit... without fear or guilt or whatever head trips keep me immature in some weird ways. Use all that wisdom I have earned over 40 (gulp) years and Really move ahead.

I'm not exactly sure what that means yet... but it's a strong feeling.

A part of me feels like I failed at the goals I set in the beginning of this Winter. Well I did, as far as not doing things daily and regularly as I knew I should. But I did achieve my goal of feeling really great for my birthday. I mean, my first niece born almost right on my birthday. And I'm planning on getting married this year. I'm not working a day job, but we are ok for now w/ $$ and I am able to work on my artwork and business stuff much more. It's a good time. Feels good.

something I'm realizing... even though I don't feel exactly like I wanted to when I started, like I remember feeling during those magical years... I feel much better. More connected. More aware. And I see that maybe I will never feel the same as I did before. I will never be that same person exactly... in the same exact circumstances. This is how I feel now and I'm healthier than when I started.

I'm also seeing that I might need to accept the fact that Jan & Feb are cave months. It's winter, hibernation time. Now I know I can be more active during this time... but there is a feeling of home and moving slowly that just goes with winter for me. It doesn't have to be depressing.

Haha well this ended up being my journal entry for the day. Long and rambling...