Stop grinding on Jesus

A friend on Facebook had this on her wall and I though it was a joke… 

…but apparently she did not because she explained that kids today are too sexualized and need to know to leave room for the holy spirit because that keeps them from dancing too close and rubbing their junk together and I guess I get the concept but wouldn’t that mean that now they’re all rubbing their junk on Jesus?  Because that seems like you’re just trading one problem for a bigger one.  So I was like, “Stop grinding on Jesus.  He doesn’t have time for dirty dancing menage-a-trois.  He’s got shit to do.”

And that’s the third person who unfriended me this week.

Working the program

Dealing with chronic mental illness is hard.  A few months ago I finished TMS to treat my depression and anxiety and it helped but I still struggle.  I have a friend who is in AA who talks about working the program…doing the steps you continually need to do to stay healthy…and I realized how much I relate to that right now.

TMS gave me a reset button but I still have bad days.  I still feel myself dip back into that dark place.  I have more tools now than ever and that helps but sometimes the only thing that I accomplish in a day is just surviving.  It’s both an amazing achievement while also tinged with shame as you see others who seem to whiz past you as you barely tread water.  Maybe they’re treading water too.  You can’t tell.  You’re just trying to breathe.

Today is one of those days for me.  I think it’s the weather.  It’s dreary and rainy and my joints hurt and it makes me not want to get out even though my doctor prescribed walking 30 minutes a day to keep my depression at bay.  It’s part of my program.  Today I took Hailey to school and then I went back to bed and stayed there until noon.  I didn’t enjoy it.  People without depression won’t understand that, but the fatigue of mental illness makes your very body a prison.  The bed smelled sour.  I couldn’t concentrate on reading.  Victor is out of town so I have no one to make me get up.

But I have to work the program.  So I got up.  I walked in the cold for 10 minutes.  Then I did another 10.  Then I hit 30.  I brushed my teeth and took a shower.  I brought my light therapy lamp out of storage.  I wrote this post.

This is a good day.  As far as mental illness is concerned, that is.  I got out of bed.  That in itself is pretty amazing.  It doesn’t always happen.  But today it did and I’m proud of that.  I will continue to work my program.

It’s a program I add to all the time, finding tools that work for me.  I share them with others.  Others share them with me.  We get along.  Together.  And alone.

So today I’m sharing some of my steps.  I’m not sharp enough to think of them all but for now I’m writing them down to remind myself that I’m worth following them.  If you have steps that help you please share them.

  1.  Follow your doctors orders.  For me that means antidepressants and behavioral therapy.
  2. Exercise 30 minutes a day, 6 days a week.
  3. Get sunlight, or if you can’t, use light therapy.  Do not over use even though you want to.
  4. Treat yourself like you would your favorite pet.  Plenty of fresh water, lots of rest, snuggles as needed, allow yourself naps.
  5. Avoid negativity.  That means the news, people, movies.  It will all be there when you’re healthy again.  The world will get on without you seeing it.
  6. Forgive yourself.  For being broken.  For being you.  For thinking those are thing that you need forgiveness for.
  7. Those terrible things you tell yourself?  Can you imagine if the person you love most was telling themselves those things?  You’d think they were crazy.  And wrong.  They think the same about you.  Those negative things you are thinking are not rational.  Remember that depression lies and your brain is not trustworthy.
  8. Give yourself permission to recover.  I’m lucky that I can work odd hours and take mental health days but I still feel shitty for taking them.  Realize that sometimes these slow days are necessary and healthy and utterly responsible.
  9. Watch Doctor Who.
  10. Love on an animal.  Go adopt a rescue or if you can’t go to the shelter and just snuggle a kitten.  Then realize that that same little kitten that you’re cradling isn’t going to accomplish shit but is still wonderful and lovely and so important.  You are that kitten.
  11. Get up.  Go brush your teeth.  Go take a hot shower.  If you do nothing else today just change into a new pair of pajamas.  It helps.
  12. Remember that you are not alone.  There are crisis lines filled with people who want to help.  There are people who love you more than you know.  There are people who can’t wait to meet you because you will teach them how unalone they are.  You are so worthy of happiness and it will come.

One day when I’m in a better place I will come back to this and fix the typos and add all the things I’ve forgotten but today I know that if I don’t publish it I will delete it and hate myself for not finishing it.  So I’m publishing it.  And I suppose that’s another step.  Trust in your words, even when you second-guess them.

Sorry this is so rambly.  It’s the best I can do.

My washing machine is mainly used to remind me how bad I am at housekeeping.

I did a load of laundry but I forgot to put it in the dryer for a few days and I was afraid I would dry that mildewy smell into it so I ran the wash again but then I forgot to put it in the dryer again and it had only been a day but technically it had been wet for three days so I washed it again just to be safe and that was day before yesterday and I just remembered that the same load was still in the wash so I’m washing it again and now I’m pretty sure I’ve set a record for washing the same load of clothes in a row which is sort of impressive but also horrifying because at this point it’s starting to feel like my washing machine is being haunted by these clothes and by my own poor decisions.  Does anyone else ever do this?

*******

And on an entirely different subject, it’s time for the Sunday wrap-up!

Shit I made in my shop (Named “EIGHT POUNDS OF UNCUT COCAINE” so that your credit card bill will be more interesting.):

Shit-you-may-or-may-not-want-to-see:

This week’s wrap-up is brought to you by BabyCared.  From them: “Here are BabyCared we help new parents and parents-to-be overcome frustration, pain, worry, guilt and stress from the time of planning through to pregnancy and life as a new parent.  Our personalized guides know exactly where you are in the journey because we’ve been there too.  Awful morning sickness?  BEEN THERE.  Don’t know how to pump and store your breast milk?  DONE THAT.”  You should check them out here.

My biggest accomplishment of the week

Also, I sent this video to my friend by text and she was like, “OMG what” and then I realized that the video didn’t go through but I still thought it was pretty impressive and then I realized that I’d texted “I taught my cat how to fist because I need encouragement and don’t like to leave the house” and I had to explain that I did not teach my cat how to fist because ew, and also this whole thing explains why I never leave the house.

My amazing daughter. Alternate title: I don’t think you’ll have a problem with this at all but if you do you can fuck all the way off.

A few years ago when Hailey was 12 she announced that she had something to tell me over breakfast.

“I’m gay.”

I responded with “Okay.  But could you hand me the syrup?”

I suspect she was disappointed in my reaction because it was scary for her to say out loud but it didn’t really affect me for two reasons.  One: At that time it seemed like lots of very young kids were coming out and I was a little concerned that for some of them it was an identity they were just trying on.  It worried me for kids who really are LGBTQ if a ton of young people came out and then later decided they were straight and that being LGBTQ was just a fad.  And two:  Because I’m not an asshole.  I support all people.  I’m openly bi myself.   I told Hailey that it wasn’t an issue but that maybe until she was older she should embrace the “no labels” concept.  Ironically, the “no labels” idea requires you to label yourself as not having a label but it felt right at the time and I was very proud of the way that Victor and I handled this, which was by not handling it at all because it wasn’t a big deal.

Except?  It is a big deal.  Maybe not to me or you, but to her.  And by not taking it seriously and discussing it I think she thought that we didn’t care, or that we didn’t think it was important.  It’s easy for me to say that the world is so much more open and caring than every before but that ignores the fact that everything a teenage girl goes through is viewed through the lens of low self-esteem and fear and shame and hormones and that is all magnified if there’s also an otherness that you are carrying around with you…a fear that comes every time she explains who she is.  Everything in junior high sucks but there’s an added layer of hell that comes with knowing you’re not like everyone else.

Hailey is very lucky.  We support her fully.  She’s out at school and has friends who support her.  Her family loves her.  There are communities she can join and there are far more out kids in her school than there ever were when I was growing up.  Today there are parades and twitter trends and celebrations.  It’s different and better and I’m so thankful to the people who’ve come before her who have made this path so much easier for her.

I’ve never been to a Pride parade. I’m not a parade girl.  I’m not a people girl.  But last year I told Hailey we should all go.  Victor and I were ready.  She was not.  She was out to her friends but not loudly out, and she worried about what would happen if kids from her school saw her there.  I explained that tons of straight people and queer allies go to those parades.  I reminded her that I was bi.  I told her it might be good for her to see difference celebrated.  She thought about it for a while but decided she wasn’t ready for that yet.

And I understand it.

The concept of Pride is a weird one for me too…the idea of celebrating something that is as simple as who you love.  It’s weird that it’s still something that has to be fought for, that we’re still in a place where it’s considered brave to be exactly who you are.    But at the same time, there is so much shame and prejudice around sexuality that it’s necessary to loudly support all people in order to combat the hate that still exists out there.

So we let Hailey take the reins on how she wants to tell her own story.  Over the past few years she’s become more confident in who she is and the fear is still there, but it is not as great as her need to be loved and accepted for who she is.  Today she told me that she would be okay with me telling this part of her story.  In fact, she said, it would make her happy.

And that makes me happy.  You’re only as happy as your saddest child, after all.

Having a teenager is hard.  You fuck up all the time.  I think maybe I shouldn’t have acted like it was no big deal when she told me.   Maybe I should have recognized that even though it wasn’t a big deal to me it was a big deal to her.  I don’t know.  I only know that I’m trying my best and that I will do anything to create a safe passage for her.  As safe as can be.

Hailey is now 14.  She is openly a lesbian.  After two years I can tell you it isn’t a fad.  It’s part of who she is.  It’s one of many amazing parts that make up the brilliant woman she is becoming.  She is a singer, and actress, an honor roll student.  She works lights for the theater.  She has a temper.  She can whistle.  She is too young to date but one day she’ll make a great girlfriend to a lucky girl.  She stands up for others.  She can’t keep her room clean.  She memorizes dramatic monologues for fun.  She wears braces for bad ankles and is taking Opera lessons and loves her pets and can’t write in cursive and wants to be a neurosurgeon and adores American Horror Story (although I fast-forward through all the bad parts) and is so much more multifaceted than anyone sees.  The same as all kids her age, I suppose.

She’s my daughter and I am so very proud of her.  I hope you are too.

Lily is all of us. Also we’re the person yelling at Lily. Also we might be the mud. Hard to say at this point.

I can’t stop watching this and every time I end up laughing until I cry as Hailey and I scream “LILY!” at each other and I think you need to watch it too:

View this post on Instagram

how many kids do y’all want?

A post shared by @ jokeyhoe on

You’re welcome.

*******

And on an entirely different subject, it’s time for the Sunday wrap-up!

The-Oh-My-God-I-Love-October Edition

 

Shit I made in my shop (Named “EIGHT POUNDS OF UNCUT COCAINE” so that your credit card bill will be more interesting.):

Shit-you-may-or-may-not-want-to-see:

This week’s wrap-up is brought to you by ORIGINAL SYN.  Afraid the world might be ending? Ever wonder what it might be like to live forever? Are you a woman over 30 who devoured The Hunger Games and was willing – NO, EAGER! – to fight to the death for Team Peta or Team Gale? If any or all of descriptors those apply, HOLY HELL DO WE HAVE THE BOOK FOR YOU. ORIGINAL SYN by Beth Kander is dystopian fiction with a twist, layering darkness and snarkiness and sharp social commentary. And yes, there are pretty people doing dangerous things. Seriously, y’all. Get addicted to this epic read before it’s your next Netflix bingeGet. It. Now.

The Coven of Witches with Questionable Powers. Applications being accepted now.

I was just taking Dorothy Barker for a walk while checking Facebook and I got sucked in because everything in the news is terrible and I ran right into a low-hanging branch so hard I fell down and Dottie jumped on my stomach and looked at me like I was an idiot and a guy driving by stopped and was like, “Jesus, are you okay?” and I explained that I was fine and was just training my papillon to be a seeing eye dog and that she’d failed miserably (because I was too embarrassed to admit that a tree hit me because of the internet) and then I thought that maybe it was a sign from God that I should stop focusing on negative things but then I remembered that really it’s druids who speak through trees and if this is a sign it’s probably one telling me to become a witch and BURN THE WORLD DOWN so I came inside and told Victor that a tree just made me into a witch and that I need to learn more about arson and he told me to lay down because probably I have a concussion and a nap does sound good but you’re not supposed to sleep if you have a concussion so I’m pretty sure that Victor is trying to kill me and I told him I was totally onto him and I may have screamed “DESTROY THE PATRIARCHY!  I SPEAK FOR THE TREES!” and then he was like, “You don’t have a concussion and you aren’t a witch.  You just bumped your noggin and you need to get off Facebook” and he might be right but it’s just as likely that a tree made me a witch and that I now have secret powers, like the power to write an entire post in a single run-on sentence and Victor disagreed and said that lack of proper punctuation isn’t really a gift but I’m pretty sure he’s just jealous that an abusive tree made me magical.

Anyway, I’m going to go lay down now.  If you’d like to join my secret coven of witches with questionable powers you are totally welcome.

A thank you to everyone who keeps this place going.

Hey.  See those people on the right side of my blog?  Those are the special angels who keep this blog going and their advertising pays for the server costs that would make this blog a total money pit if they weren’t here.  They are awesome and brilliant and you should go visit them right now.

A few times a year I open up new spots for ads but I usually do it on twitter and they fill up super quickly and then people get frustrated that they didn’t see it on time so today I’m announcing openings here.  Text ads start at $100 a month.  Weekly wrap-up sponsorships are $350.    Click here for all the details.

Click on the link above to reserve a spot.  They’re first come, first served.  And thank you to everyone who has ever advertised here and everyone who has clicked through to visit to make it worth advertising here.  Jesus and I love you.

It’s October. Time for a little horror.

It’s October 1st which means that if you’re reading this you survived September, a month that historically wants to eat people.

October is my favorite month because I love horror…books and movies.  It seems counterintuitive since I have an anxiety disorder but with horror I can exercise my nervous energy with things that are mostly unlikely to happen to me as long as the zombie apocalypse doesn’t actually break out.

This month I’m going to try to watch a horror movie every day of October so that means I need suggestions.

Tell me a movie I need to add to my list.  My personal favorites are creepy supernatural, character-driven weirdness, psychological horror, zombies.  Bonus points if it’s on netflix or hulu.

I’ll update this as I add to my list if you want to watch along with me this month.

October 1 – Burnt Offerings (1976)

October 2 – The Witch (2015)

October 3 – Get Out (2017)

October 4 – Carnival of Souls (1962)

October 5 – Picnic at Hanging Rock (1975)

October 6 – Shaun of the Dead (2004)

October 7 – I am the Pretty Thing That Lives in the House (2016)

October 8 – Babadook (2014)

October 9 – A Tale of Two Sisters (2003)

October 10 – The Host – (2006)

October 11 – A Girl Walks Home Alone at Night

October 12 – Tucker and Dale vs. Evil (2010)

October 12b – Let The Right One In (2008)

October 14 – What We Do In The Shadows (2014)

October 15 – We Are What We Are

October 16 – Train to Busan (2016)

October 17 – Cloverfield Lane (2016)

October 18 – Troll Hunter (2010)

October 19 – Dawn of the Dead (1978)

October 20 – The Shining (1980)

October 21 – Rear Window (1954)

October 22 – The Invitation (2015)

October 23 – 28 Days Later (2002)

October 24 – The Moth Diaries (2011)

October 25 – The Strangers (2008)  Sorry.  That was too torturey for me.  Let’s change that to The Curious Creations of Christine McConnell (2018)

October 26 – The Apostle (2018)

October 27 – The Changeling (1980)

October 28 – Raw (2016)

October 29 – The Conjuring

October 30 – It Follows (2014)

October 31 – The Haunting of Hill House (2018 tv version)

 

 

 

 

 

 

Hi there. It’s gonna be okay.

This week was hard, right?

Yeah. It was. All the stuff on the news is exhausting and it was a full moon and that girl at work was a bitch and your uncle was posting crazy bullshit on Facebook again and you didn’t finish that thing and you want to punch someone but you can’t because it’s illegal and you’re the better person and also you can’t go back to jail again.

But.

You’re not alone.

And that’s good because pissed off people make good changes in the world and that’s necessary.

But it’s hard.  And slow.

So it’s important to take care of yourself and remind yourself that the world is never as bleak as we think and that’s it’s okay (AND NECESSARY) to love and laugh and be silly and reground yourself with friends or family or books or binge-watching something awesome.  Surround yourself with good people because there are so many out there.  ENJOY YOUR LIFE IN SPITE OF THE ASSHOLES.

Or just go watch gifs of people in infomercials doing normal things so incredibly badly.  That’s what I’m going to do.

Feel better?  Me too.  Now go and make your life the good place that you deserve it to be.