The Girl in Black

Se necesita una poca de gracia.

Friday, August 26, 2005

*gasp* I want!

http://asofterworld.com/prints.html


I've always meant to buy one of these prints when they go on sale, but I can never decide which one (cuz I could never afford more than one).

But this time, I'm not missing the boat. I love them all, but I'm trying to decide between "Truth and Beauty Bombs" and "Being In Love Is Totally Punk Rock." And tied for second is "Scuba Kittens" and "My Parents" and... oh hell, I want them all!

*looks out at everyone reading, assumes a cute facial expression and bats eyes*

Anyone and everyone who's my friend and who loves me will buy me one for my birthday, right?

*does cute little girl giggle*

You do know that my birthday is October 19th, correct?

I will be 26.

Wednesday, August 24, 2005

Swallowing my pride.

So for the past few days I've been taking a long, hard look at myself. And some of the things that I've seen haven't made me very happy.

I started reading a book my Melody Beattie called "Codependent No More." And some of the things I've read in it apply very directly to my relationships with friends and loved ones. Especially with my ex.

And I realize now that what I had thought was my acceptance and assumption of responsibility in how things went wrong didn't cover the larger picture at all, just the symptoms. And although I really did need to vent a lot of anger, hurt, and resentment towards him (I fully believe that emotions should be expressed), a lot of it was what I had brought on myself.

This isn't about blaming him, and this isn't about beating myself up. This is about really taking responsibility for my actions. This is about admitting that I was wrong.

We played into each other incredibly well. To use terms from the book, we "rescued" each other. We were "caretakers" for each other. We let that grow into resentment towards each other, and then into persecution of each other. And I don't know how much he did this, but I know that I would constantly turn it around so that I ended up being the "victim." I constantly became a martyr. And neither one of us saw it for what it really was.

And we kept it up for three years.

And now that I can see the big picture, I can't be so angry at him anymore. Certainly there are things that I still hurt about, things that I'm still bitter over. But they're trivial now. I can let them go.

Ever since I figured all this out, I've wanted to email him and tell him. Not to apologize, so much as to indeed say that I was wrong. I was wrong about being resistant to getting on mood medications. I was wrong about thinking I didn't need therapy. I was wrong about thinking that the big problems were only his, and that he was using me as an excuse to not focus on them.

But I don't know if it's the best time to contact him, really. It's been pointed out to me that I did just create a boundary between myself and my ex, and this would be breaking it down to an extent.

Honestly, though, I don't think emailing my ex would change anything, or fix anything. I don't know how he would respond. And it's not like I want to re-establish communication completely. I just hit that moment of revelation that happens when you realize and understand completely how you fucked up. The kind of revelation that makes you go back to people you've stopped talking to, to admit what you really did. The kind of revelation I was waiting for him to have.

But I had one instead.

So I might wait a little while, or not. But I think I really need to do this, mostly for myself. And yeah, part of me wants to warn him. Wants to suggest that he look this stuff up too, that he really look at himself. But I don't know if that's my business anymore. I don't even know how much of a part he would have played if I had acted differently.

So I just want to let him know that I was wrong, and that I'm sorry.

Sunday, August 21, 2005

Nostalgia and a birthday party...

My coworker friend and his wife are two of several awesome people I have met through my ex, and people I considered "my friends" just as much as I considered them my ex's. I've spent plenty of time at their house, by this point, and have even been to a party of theirs before without my ex.

But yesterday was their son's second birthday party, and an occasion for the entire circle to show up for a shindig that only this couple can throw. And I had a really great time! I stayed way later than I had originally intended, and enjoyed the company of many nifty people.

And yet, it seemed strange at times.

It just hit me that, on an occasion such as this, my ex would and should have been there. I didn't feel quite like I had taken his place, but it seemed funny to me that he was gone and I was accepted into this group on my own merit.

It was a mere seven months ago that the two of us were celebrating New Years' eve in much the same fashion. But it seems like a lifetime ago sometimes. And I had met all these people because of my ex, in my ex's presence, and usually seen them in tow with my ex. And now I am alone.

I suppose sometimes I still miss him, but a lot of it is just habit. How things used to be. I feel a lot more comfortable being myself now without him around. I had mentioned some of what went on to my therapist the other day. Her comment was "He sounds very controlling." It was just a little bit more validation, but something I needed.

And I recounted the whole sordid breakup story to her (an epic that spanned over two months, so much so that I can barely remember when it began and when exactly it ended), with little details thrown in that most people don't get to hear. And as I reached the end of it I felt that much stronger, that much prouder of myself. Instead of being passive, or elusive, I stood up for myself. Remembering this feels good.

And in a way I'm greatful for what I went through, because if I hadn't learned what wasn't good for me, I wouldn't be able to appreciate the sweetness of what I have now.

Love is really a funny little thing. I won't ever say that I didn't truly love my ex. It just seems like such a paradox, to say that I honestly loved and on some level still care about someone who wasn't good for me, and makes me terribly angry and bitter at times. But then, I tend to be quite the contradiction. And I have the habit of seeing the beauty of people's insides, ignoring certain outward traits that are more negative. Once I make that connection with a person, more often than not all else is forgiveable, because I know that person's soul. Things like being constantly late, or forgetting to call, or being a womanizer, or rough around the edges, etc. That's just who these people are, it's part of what makes them them. (The thing for me to remember is how much of who these people are affects me. Something I can get into the habit of forgetting.)

We really are all beautiful and perfect, exactly as we are, "warts" and all. If only I could convince others to see in themselves what I see in them. And even as I say that, others say it of me.

"Healer, heal thyself."

Heh.

Friday, August 19, 2005

Zen and the art of personal maintenance...

I can't remember if this was told to me as a joke, or if it was explained as allegory, but I do find it amusing.

A Confucianist, a Buddhist, and a Zen monk are all standing around a bowl of vinegar. Each dips their finger into the bowl, and tastes the vinegar. The Confucianist and the Buddhist both grimace at the taste, and proclaim that the vinegar tastes terrible, and isn't it oh so awful. (or something. my memory is lacking, please forgive)

But the Zen monk tastes the vinegar and smiles, because it tastes exactly as it should.

I like that. It's harder to apply in real life, but once you get it, you get it. I just don't always get it. What I'm trying to figure out is how to allow the old bitternesses in my life to be as they are, and not grimace at the taste anymore. I won't say it's ridiculous to carry around a hurt that I've had since I was six years old, but I will say that it's probably about time to let it go.

I suppose that if what had happened hadn't happened, there would still be suffering in my life. It's silly to think otherwise. And my path may not have even been realized like I think it would have been, if things hadn't happened the way they did.

But dammit, a girl can dream, can't she?

*sigh* The thing that makes me sad is that it's time to find a new dream. It's been time for a long time. So, maybe one last hurrah of angst, and then? Well, I couldn't really say. I haven't had a real dream in a long, long time. Most people who know me now know a girl without one. And it's also funny, all of my secrets are really things that are just common knowledge to people who don't know me anymore.

It's all just stuff that no one knows anymore.

Thursday, August 18, 2005

Where the heck have I been?

It's been far too long, hasn't it?
So, let's recap:

1) I have been dutifully taking a mood stabilizer twice a day every day for the past two weeks. I'm not completely evened out, but the mood swings are somewhat gentler. I think I was so positive when I started taking them because I went into a shift of euphoria overdrive. I fell into a slight depression last weekend, but without most of the wishes to do bad things to myself that has been accompanying such. This is good.

2) My dad's birthday was last weekend. Yay! He is still alive, and as well as can be expected, and we didn't get into an argument about the minivan or nuthin'! We also feasted on mussels, clams, paella, cheesecake and coconut flan! (We are an ecclectic group, my family.)

3) My aunt gave me a haircut over the weekend as well. 'Bout friggin' time!

4) I hooked up the PS2!!! That's mostly where I have been, aside from the being more anti-social because of the depression thing. I forgot how much fun it is to immerse yourself in a really cool video game for several hours. Almost like reading a good book, 'cept there's repetetive musical accompanyment that keeps playing along in the game. And there are more monsters to fight. Definitely more monsters.

Oh, right, I should mention that I have been playing Chrono Trigger, one of the bestest ever RPGs of all time!!! In fact, I came online merely to get some advice from a walk-through on something (it may be wussy, but it really saves some time when you're not sure what you're doing). And now I'm going to go back to looking up my walkthrough. I just thought I'd pop in and say hi.

Hi.

I see my psychiatrist for a follow-up appointment tomorrow, btw. It's funny, he wrote my diagnosis codes on my receipt/next appointment sheet of paper. There was a key for a lot of the diagnoses, but mine weren't on it! So my clever, resourceful boy looked them up for me. Apparently so far I am labeled as "general mood disorder" and "general personality disorder."

My personality is in disorder? Hmph.

Yeah, I really do find this amusing at the moment. Although I'm suspicious that I might get labeled as "borderline." It'll take a little time to make peace with that thought, if it's the case. My limited experience with borderline people hasn't been pleasant, and I'd hate to think myself as such. Although another discussion with the boy has led me to remember to be open minded about things, and not have an absolute negative or positive opinion about certain personality traits and whatnot. *sigh* My apologies to anyone I've thought wrongly about, whether we know it or not.

Tuesday, August 09, 2005

Alive and kicking!

And without all the caffeine of that last post.

Spent some good quality time with my boy this weekend. We laughed, we cried, we did naughty things. Time with boy is always well spent.

Did I mention that he got me a random present?

It was quite the surprise! The first thing he did when we got back to his place was pull me into his bedroom to give me this surprise he'd been hinting at for the past month or so. (I got him good with a really nice Zippo from Japan, and apparently he just couldn't be outdone...) He handed me the dual disc "Greatest Hits" PS1 version of ChronoTrigger and Final Fantasy 4 (which, I realized later, is my beloved "Final Fantasy 2," which was how they released it in the U.S.). "How sweet! Now I don't have to go hunt it down when I finally get that PS2 that I've been meaning to get!" I thought.

And then he says "Oh yeah, you're going to need something to save your game with too." And he comes back with, yup, a PS2!

Color me surprised! OMG! He even got me other things I'd need, like memory cards for both systems and a warranty! In't he so sweet? I got in too late to hook it up last night, but I think that's on the agenda for this evening, after I finally do something about the wreck that is my kitchen.

No, really. It's a total wreck. So bad that the friend who watched my cats had to threaten to thwap me with a rolled up newspaper upon my return. My defense is that that's what depression does to people. And it's honestly true. I just stopped caring about things like knocked over plants and dishes and stains covering the counters. It gets worse, but I'll spare you the details.

However, I have an ace up my sleeve now. I made the leap, and am actually taking a mood stabilizer! The first meds I've ever been on, and it's about damn time.

I lucked into an awesome Psychiatrist who had an opening Thursday morning before I left for DC. He narrowed down all of my life's complicated problems to one specific, simple solution, and wrote me a prescription that I filled the same afternoon. I started taking them that night, and immediately noticed a difference.

Kinda like the first time I got stoned during a major depression, actually.

But the loopiness went away very quickly, and I just feel more...grounded? It's hard to describe without going into all of the backstory, but there are so many little things I've noticed. So far I've had plenty of opportunities to sink into these terribly black moods, only I haven't sunk so far, and I've come back out of them rather easily. I've had a few flashes of wanting to cut myself, but not as strong, and not for too long, and they haven't been around at all the past few days. (I may go into detail about all of this in some other post.) I don't pick at my skin the way that I used to. And now, my first day back at work, I feel more focused than I have in a long while.

I'm really hoping this keeps up. I feel like I'm not ruled by my emotions as much anymore. I feel like I can get stuff done for once. Wow. Please, Goddess, please let this keep up.

Here's to hope, y'all. May it keep us all alive.

Wednesday, August 03, 2005

What a strange 24 hours it has been so far...





So I went out to this club called Pulse last night with my friend Matty and proceeded to both rock the mic at karaoke (although another girl beat me in the contest *pout*) and get fairly drunk off of cheap martinis. Nuthin' weird about all that.


So we're driving home when Matty's car stalls for no reason a little ways from my house. It was very amusing to deal with car problems while drunk. (No, really!) I don't drink that often, so when I do I like to have enough time to enjoy it, even if I'm waiting for AAA.

I go home to sleep it off, though, and whilst lying in bed awaiting my transition to dreamland I suddenly remembered this really really creepy story from the Creepshow movie. Usually movies don't freak me out, but oh my god this just messes with my head.

Creepshow is a movie of four separate horror/sci-fi-ish stories, and the last one... *shudder* Okay, so like, there's this guy who's not too bright who lives on this farm, right? And this meteor crash lands in his backyard one night. And for some reason (maybe it's setting things on fire?) it's too hot, so he dumps water on it, but by doing that it causes all these weird, super-thin blades of grass to spring up everywhere. And it gets worse and worse, and he can't figure out that water is what causes it to spread, so it, like, ends up on his hands and his tongue and stuff. And it makes him itch, so he goes and sits in a bathtub of water to stop the itching! The next thing you see is this human form lumbering around, covered in grass, with all the creepy sounding breathing effects of someone with grass growing in their lungs *shudders again* and he goes and gets a shotgun and blows his head off! And the last scene is montages of how this grass just grows and grows and grows until the whole farm is covered....

I am getting all kinds of creeped out just by writing about it. *shudders even more*

And so I can't get that out of my head for a bit (and I even tried of thinking of cute puppies and sunbeams and stuff).

Then at the same time I suddenly started remembering the feeling of visiting Reston for the first time with my ex (which was a September). This is harder to explain, but there are memories for me that are just feelings of stuff, and sometimes they tie into the feelings of the seasons and other stuff. Usually I get some feeling of September and autumn in late summer (which is funny because there are no outward signs that autumn is coming, and September is really just as hot as summer down here).

So the feeling of fall approaching has been with me today as well.

And then this morning there was mad crazy traffic congestion, about a million cops (just cops, no firemen or ambulances) headed in the opposite direction of me, all of them in undercover vehicles (some of which are actually given normal paint jobs, so Orlando residents beware! They're not all white!), and then this guy in front of me slows down to avoid a hubcap rolling out into the street. I look over to see that somehow a woman had turned off of the road, up onto the curb, over about 10 feet of sidewalk, and smashed into the side of a parked semi-truck trailer (that was right next to a chain link fence, which she also drove through). It must have just happened, I could still see her in the car.

And yet, with all the traffic and diversions, I made it to work on time!

WTF??? This is most definitely a weird day...

Monday, August 01, 2005

Who would have thought?


So first thing this morning, I get a phone call. From a headhunter. Telling me about how this
other lighting company in South Florida would offer me a lot of money to relocate and be in charge of people and make decisions and stuff.

My first thought was, how the hell does anyone think that I'm good enough at what I do to try to steal me away from where I am?

To be honest, I was curious, but there are a lot of reasons why I politely declined, including the fact that I really don't want to live in South Florida.

But more than that, I'm kinda happy where I am right now. On days when I'm not severely depressed I feel pretty good about my job, and the people I work with. All my coworkers are pretty awesome people, I get a lot of freedom to do stuff that I might not get anywhere else, and I can be pretty loyal. There's a lot that I'm trying to do right now that I want to see through. If I ever did leave, I would want to leave the place in much better shape than when I came in, and in a place where someone could easily take over without having to start all over again.

And as my coworker confidante says, it's really not all about the money.

Of course, this has never happened to me before, so I went into his office, wide eyed, asking if he could keep a secret. He grinned and basically explained that it happens a lot, and I don't need to worry about whether our boss knows or not. "Feels pretty good, doesn't it?" he asked.

Um, yeah, I guess so...

I can't help but feel oftentimes that I'm living some kind of lie. That I put on a good face, but it's really all just makeup and lighting tricks. And a lot of that comes from my tendency to see the ideal of what needs to be done, think of grand ideas and plans, and barely follow through on any of them.

In my mind, I know I should be so much greater than what I actually am.

And, of course, another friend of mine basically told me last night that I need to stop living in my head. Well, duh.

But just because I know that doesn't mean I know how to stop. Somewhere along the way I learned to only look outward for positive response that what I am doing is okay. It's been so bad for me lately that I can be happy and fine when I am around most people, when it behooves me to put on my pretty face. But when I'm left alone I crumble. It's like I can barely keep myself together.

Hopefully this will pass. Hopefully there is a psychiatrist who can help me. Drugs are never a complete answer to anything, but if I really do have a chemical problem (which I think there's a good chance of), then there's probably something out there that can help me function better.

It's just hanging on until then that's the hard part.

It's the little things, really...

I think I made the best sammich ever Sunday morning.

Peanut butter and ice cream!

OMG this was some good stuff! To really make it work well you want a sweeter bread (I opted for Whole Foods brand 12 grain), and peanut butter that isn't too salty (again, Whole Foods brand crunchy, with a smidge of salt mixed in). But I think I'm onto something here.

This is even better than the leftover Thanksgiving turkey and whipped cream sammich I used to make. (You can only do it at Thanksgiving, and the whipped cream has to be that heavy whipping cream that you make yourself.)
 
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