Thursday, April 22, 2010

The Night My Apartment Burnt Down (But Really Didn't So Don't Freak Out).

I haven't talked much about my current state of mental health on this blog for a while, but it is still something I think about often. I lost my really intense diagnosis some time ago after a great deal of personal work, healing time, and minor emotional epiphanies that finally added up. Also dropping the doctor who seemed to believe if the low dose pills weren't working, that we should probably up the dose or add this other prescription to the regimen instead of discussing diet changes or homeopathic remedies was a pretty good move too. Nearing a year and a half of being pharmaceutical-free is pretty awesome.

So. Current status.

Pretty damn good most days. Like, really good. Maybe even, is this how normal, usually positive people experience and feel life, because they are totally on to something! Of course then I quiz myself about what is going on in my life and wonder if feeling positive in the face of unemployment and divorce is really such a great sign of mental stability...

But not to worry (or maybe to worry lots!), I still have these blistering moments of anxiety and depression so abysmal and ridiculous that I get this urge to reach up and pat my own head while saying, "whoa there, Nellie. You are gonna be just fine if you could just start breathing slower." (We have already established that I often times split into two characters when sort of losing my shit. One is sweaty, panicky, GI-track issues girl with the million-words-of-worry-per-minute-thoughts and the other is this sensible, knows I'll make it through, somewhat amused by the flurry of nervous activity the other is putting on display character. These two parts of me talk to one another. HEY I COULD SAY I TALK DIRECTLY TO JESUS AND HE TALKS BACK OR SOME SHIT, so just roll with it.)
(This is my favorite kind of Jesus. The kind that calms nervous velociraptors. This picture has nothing to do with this post really, but you aren't going to complain because it is Jesus holding a fucking dinosaur and you know how rad it is of me to have shared it.)

The longer I am not employed the more frequent these little bouts of hysteria occur. We are coming up on FOUR MONTHS OF UNEMPLOYMENT PEOPLE. I mean, I have this amazing internship that I love, love, love, but love ain't paying my damn bills. It does allow me to feel productive most of the time, but I still experience this distinct sense of FAILURE AND SUCKITUDE at being an adult.

Anxiety by definition is: Unjustified fears or concerns that are likely to meet other fears you may have and then they all start mating in rabbit-like fashion and pretty soon you have rabbits falling off all the available surfaces in your brain and did you guys know they smell funny when they get packed in tight, and how am I going to feed them all, OMG I AM GOING TO COMMIT BUNNY GENOCIDE IF I DON'T KEEP WORRYING/FEEDING THEM, SOMEONE HELP ME STOP THIS SIMILE/METAPHOR DISASTER. Well, that is my definition at least.

Okay, so I started this post like five paragraphs ago with the intention of telling a story about this totally out of hand anxiety response I had to a very minor situation that I now can laugh about. Worked out really well, huh? Whatever. Today was total shit and I just needed to vent about having a sort of loose, shaky structural feeling about myself. Like I might just collapse into a vibrating puddle of emo when I get a really kind, loving message from someone and don't feel worthy, and don't know why I don't feel worthy, and I thought I was over these internal and irrational chantings of "no one will really love you if they could see you as you really are which right now is in faded yoga pants, popping amoxicillin and pain killers for that wisdom tooth you need to get pulled but haven't, peanutbutter smeared on your cheek and a general outlook of doom and misery."


Finally here is the story (though I doubt if I need to illustrate further that I am neurotic at this point):

I woke up the other night to the smell I realized (after nearly hyperventilating from huffing the air rapidly) was like something burning. I sat up and pointed my nose in every direction. I got out of bed and wandered around. Was a burner on? Can radiators break and suddenly turn waaay up and explode (even though I know they are water based and probably don't make smokey smells)? Not shockingly this spiraled into "SHIT WE ARE GOING TO DIE IN A FIRE IF I DON'T FIGURE THIS OUT RIGHT NOW" and "HOW AM I GOING TO GET MY GRANDMA'S HOPE CHEST DOWN THE STAIRS IF THEY ARE BURNING?!?!!" I woke the gorgeous german that was staying the night (yes, he stays the night sometimes family; don't freak out on me) and asked if he smelled it too. Yes, he did, and it smelled a bit like a cigarette he thought. I believe he turned over and had the audacity to go back to sleep not realizing that we really needed to plan our emergency exit strategy OR WE WILL DIE A FIRERY DEATH, WHY DON'T I HAVE ONE OF THOSE ROPE LADDERS LIKE IN THE ADVERTISEMENTS, FINE I WILL DO EVERYTHING. I stayed up another 45 minutes sniffing the air (which pretty much didn't smell like burning for 40 of those minutes, but I stayed vigilant) and organizing how I would corral my cat, grab my most important things, and swiftly get us all to safety only to watch the rest of what I have burn to the ground.

Um, so we didn't die and my apartment is still intact, if you are wondering. Turns out I have a new neighbor that smokes directly below my place. I am in the process of submitting a courtesy request that he knock it the fuck off so I don't have to fear for my life and wonder if I have told the people I care about that I love them enough.

This post is sooo done now.

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Hipster Freakout

Sometimes I just embrace that I have these vaguely hipster tendencies here and there. For example, I do like the scarf with t-shirt/thin jacket/no-it-is-not-cold-out-but-I-am-too-cool-to-care look. Never mind how idiotic and obviously contrarian it appears, I dig it.

Also related:
  • I have a weakness for girls who pull off messy, butch haircuts.
  • I get a kick out of introducing music to a group of friends that is 1) amazing music and then, yes 2) unknown to them until that point.
  • I do own vinyl and yet no record player anymore.
  • I understand how one can have good taste in wine and beer all while being on unemployment.
  • I have a friend who collects grandma shoes and rocks them for all the comfort and radness they are worth (a lot, according to her).
And then there is this song which is my current anthem.

Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros pretty much rocks my face off
with hipster happiness and I suggest if you have any qualms about how
asshat-ish hipsters can be, that you put them aside and revel in this

Then we can return to mostly hating on those pretentious pricks as per usual.

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

There Was An Old Woman Who Lived In A Studio Apartment. And Her Name Was Stoleyourprozac.

I am getting old.

Okay, not really, because come on, I'm only 28 years along, but I am going to drop a bomb right here, right now. I have white hairs. WHAT THE OLDER-THAN-I-FEEL-IS-FAIR FUCK? The other week I leaned into check out my extensive roots (hey, I am a red-head, but I like to amp it up a few notches) in my bathroom mirror to see if I can pull off a few more days/weeks of lazily not attending the disparagement between dyed and real. I decided, hells yes I can. As I pulled away from practically smooshing my face against the cool mirror I caught a little gleam in my hair.

What was that magical shimmer, I wondered.

I leaned back in. (Feel free to imagine the Jaws music playing in the background or some creepy CSI kinda tunage.) I saw it again. Right there, in my bangs. I innocently wondered if I had some blonde in my hair again. HEY, IT COULD HAPPEN. However, it did not happen. I believe I said " Oh, fuck me" when I realized this hair was white.

And then.


When I regained consciousness (it was touch and go for a good 10 minutes) I clung to the sink with one hand and rapidly plucked with the other. OUT DAMN SPOT kinda stuff was going on in my mind.

I had to get these suckers where I could really see them and confirm the shocking whiteness that was happening. If I had a microscope I would have spit on a slide, slapped those hairs down and dropped some biology knowledge, but as it turns out I got a C+ in biology and I do not own fancy science paraphernalia.

But don't worry that they are all gone. Oh-ho-ho noooo. There are more of them. Taunting me. For a week I sort of FREAKED OUT ALL THE TIME, but now I am embracing these thin wisps of I-am-closer-to-death-than-a-day-ago thingies. It could be a pretty striking look don't you think?

I mean Bonnie Raitt straight up rocks the skunk stripe. I'm thinking I could do the same.

Saturday, April 3, 2010

What The What?


Let's do this.

First I will kill you with cute! I know, right? Eh Geh, so adorable I want to shove marshmallows in my mouth and raise flutterbies (that was what butterflies used to be called, which makes WAY more sense, p.s.) in a commune or some shit.

I am a little late with the cultural relevance on this one, but it has been just sitting in it's jpeg glory, waiting for the right post. And here we are. Ready to drop this hot shit like it is... well hot. I preemptively apologize for getting this song stuck in your heads if you know it. Damn, it catchy though. And cause I am feeling goofy, here is the best version of the song. Like I said, HOT SHIT.

Now that you are in the mood to dance, I give you titillating hints of pop-and-lock instructions.
Let us break it down, break bread together, beatbox, bust a move, bump-a-rump, Brokeback Mountain Hip Hop I Can't Quit You!!

Whoa. Yeah, I went there. And it was good.

Well, it's sweet and weird, which is pretty much me on my best day. I really like this work and you can find it here. A Softer World.

If this diagram doesn't explain everything in the world to you, I am not sure we can be friends. But let's get serious, if The Big Lebowski didn't offer the universal theory of everything to you with open hands and a come hither expression when you first watched it, then we were never meant to be anyways. Or just watch it again and get back to me. Because I need my readers. And the movie is SO worth watching approximately 56 times over the course of a few decades.

I love my chickadees, and I hope they love me. I will try to stay more on track with posting regularly again. I just needed a month or so of laxidasical posting habits to get my energy back. And beef up my random picture collection.

Friday, April 2, 2010

Catch As Catch Can

Shit. This a catch up blog post. I took a break from publishing as life got busy and the posts that got started certainly didn't get finished. I think I have four or five posts still in the "edit" phase and today I am pulling some of them together in no real order and with no real purpose. Just a release of them and perhaps a release of some of these thoughts.

Orange wedges, divorce papers, forgotten about loads of laundry, spring walks, friends, internship, crushing on someone, ukulele jamming. These things, among a few others pretty much sum me up these days.

Exhibit A: I took to eating orange wedges in the mornings after seeing my niece go to town on them recently. She is nearly two years old and has a more developed palate for food than I did at 16, I think. If it's not oranges, it's grapefruit, or banana, or lentils, or salsa, or... you see where this goes. When her mom or dad cuts up the wedges of orange she wiggles in her highchair and reaches with a smile and hint of a whine in her voice if it takes too long. Once her plate is in front of her she jams the wedge into her mouth, slurping and gnawing away with a blissed out look on her face. There is much to learn from the young, and even if all I figure out is to eat fruit with distinct and obvious pleasure, I am totally cool with that.

Exhibit B: My dear friend came up with and introduced me to the term "the Divortex" and I love him for it. In essence it is can be defined as any conversation that spirals rapidly into only focusing on the proceeding of a individual's divorce you are not legally involved in and that does not allow you to extradite yourself with ease. The only surefire way to end the cycle of chatter is to establish "divortex" as a safe word of sorts that cues the other person that they have taken over the conversation to a degree that is no longer acceptable. I make a point to not really talk about the divorce at length to anyone, but there have been moments when the sympathetic ear of another has allowed me to teeter at the edge and once or twice, fall in. Swirled around faster and faster amongst legal forms, emotions, useless theories... it is a dangerous place to visit for anyone, even for me as I go through the process. Printing out the forms and filling them out for the first, tentative time was... heavy. I sort of buzzed in my fingers and lifted above myself at times, like the feeling you get right before you come down with the flu. Distant and confused.

Exhibit C: From February:

The light is changing in Sacramento. More often the grey morning breaks open by noon into puzzle pieces of huge puffy clouds and bastions of blue. I wasn't so sure I was ready to lose the promise of rain, muffled noises from the street... but after one afternoon of ennui the moment the sun shown in through my window, I think I am ready. It was silly, I suppose, to mope like a teenager when the weather did not suit my tastes exactly. And it happens every spring. I get a little panicky when the ratio of rain clouds to blue sky tilts in the latter's direction. It takes a few days to remember how the clear, clean light of spring brings promise, little buds on spindly branches, voices bouncing off buildings up into the open sky...

Many years ago February consistently was the hardest month for me. It harkened back to times of strife and stress. Those of you that know me well, remember how you became more vigilant and most likely more worried for me. Each February I feel it less and less until, I nearly don't feel it at all. And hopefully, so do my loved ones.

This year the rebirth metaphor of the season is particularly apt. I have a freshly tilled garden in which to plant whatever my heart desires. Never having a green thumb to begin with, I am hesitant to really go wild with it. I may love to look at dalia's, but I haven't the faintest idea how to care for them. And so it is with new endeavors, too. New friendships, new projects, new affections. I am operating on intuition and a solid dose of hope. Come on, blossoms! Wow me like I think you just might.

Exhibit D: The new affection. It isn't that new anymore. He's been around more often and I'd like to think I am better for it. I don't know how much to say or even how to say it. I'll just start with the words that come up first. Heartbeats, goosebumps, coffee and tea, fingertips to fingertips, silly chatter, meaningful talks, journal entries, discovery, surprise, trust, music, postcards, dreams (day and night), being present, being calm and excited all at once, reality exceeding fantasy. I realized I don't care if it is "too soon" or just a smidge crazy of me to feel all of these things. Life is for the living and I feel so very alive these days. A New Year's kiss that has brought me thrills and beyond as the months have passed. Fuck yeah.

Sie sind mein herz.