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December 29, 2013

The Picts

Pict, (possibly from Latin picti, “painted”), one of an ancient people who lived in what is now eastern and northeastern Scotland, from Caithness to Fife. Their name may refer to their custom of body painting or possibly tattooing.
http://www.independent.co.uk/news/science/the-truth-about-the-picts-886098.html

http://www.bbc.co.uk/scotland/history/articles/kingdom_of_the_picts/

http://halfmoon.tripod.com/

These are my people.

Monday I got a new tattoo from the lovely and talented Kathryn Moore at Dogstar. (That's what Christmas bonuses are for, right?)

The design was based on this obelisk, which we think is Scandinavian as the knot work is much less formal and more free form than Celtic knot work. You can see where it starts and ends, also not the case with Celtic knot work.





















She came up with this:
The stencil is applied.

Just about a week later, it's mostly healed.
The OSD was oddly upset I didn't consult with him; that I hadn't at least commented that I was doing it. Seems saying there will be more was not enough of a warning.

I won't tell you the questions I asked him as qualifiers for having input into what I do with my own body (well okay, one of them was "are you my father?" Another was "do you sign my paycheck?" There was a third, which I will leave to your imagination.).
Kinda funny that an old sailor doesn't have a single tattoo. But then, come to think of it, neither did my father, and he was an old, old sailor.
I informed OSD that I am a Pictish Scandinavian princess and I am having tattoos.

I think I'm done now, but The Boy reminded me that I said that after the Raven tattoo. So...maybe not. 

Consider this your consult, "Mr. Baardsson".





December 15, 2013

It's Hard to Wave Goodbye with T-Rex Arms

Thursday night was Paul's last night as Barbell Club coach. The regulars, most of us, took him out for a beer afterward. We are going to miss you so much Paul, in spite of you causing us pain twice a week.

Best of luck in your new job. And thanks for believing in me. In all of us.

Don't let this innocent, adorable face fool you. He is brutal.
Ryan, Keith, and Paul

Bonnie (best neighbor ever), Paul, Brian, and Marvin

http://www.sadanduseless.com/2012/01/t-rex-trying-things/

December 14, 2013

Winter, Almost

Winter, almost
And the texture is of bare brown and white
After heavy verdant of summer
Room for skies of spare blue 
And the crimson cardinal flash

k.e. 12/14/13

*******************************************************

JUNIP


Line Of Fire 

What would you do
if it all came back to you?
Each crest of each wave
bright as lightning

What would you say
if you had to leave today?
leave everything behind
even though for once, you're shining

Standing on higher ground
when you hear the sounds
you realize it's just the wind
And you notice it matters 
who and what you let under your skin

Put to the test
would you step back from the line of fire?
Hold everything back
all emotions set aside it

Convince yourself
someone else
and fight from the world
your lack of confidence.
What you choose to believe in
takes you much too far
takes you much too far

No one else around you
no one to understand you
no one to hear your calls.
Look through all your dark corners
you're backed up against the wall
step back from the line of fire

What would you do
if it all came back to you?
each crest of each wave
bright as the lightning
do the same as you do
do the same as you do
do the same as you
do the same as you

I do the same as you, 
Do the same as you 
do the same as you do 
What you choose to believe in
takes you much too far

No one else around you
no one to understand you
no one to hear your calls.
Look through all your dark corners
you're backed up against the wall
Step back from the line of fire
Step back from the line of fire
Step back from the line of fire
Step back from the line of fire
Step back from the line of fire
Step back from the line of fire
Step back from the line of fire
Step back from the line of fire

Step back
Step back 
Step back

December 8, 2013

Sloth

Full blown slothfulness has permeated to my very core. It's all I can do to write this.

Anyway...
It's gray and cold and wet outside.

Anyway...
Last night several of us went out - after 8:00 PM! It was downright European. A couple of Barbell Clubbers were participating in the amateur drag queen competition at The Pinhook in downtown Durham and we went to lend our support. It was Nova's first public appearance - she was great.
Vivian Vaughn, one of our favorite Drag Bingo queens, came (as a boy) with his partner. And with a little help from some 5000 mg B12, we managed to stay out until after 1 AM.

But today, we are one with the sloth.

"Hey, I said no pictures!" Keith from Barbell Club

Nova Gina, a.k.a. Ryan
Anyway...
The Boy had snow on Thursday. It was 78 degrees here. 
Lincoln City, Oregon 12/5/13
Anyway...
I dead lifted 200 pounds Thursday night. 200! That is the power of a good coach; they believe you can do it, so you do too. Then you do something you would not have thought possible even one month ago. 
Did I tell you Paul was leaving? 'Tis true. This coming Thursday will be his last day. I am quite sad about that. We're taking him out for a beer after class. 

Anyway...
I have tortured you enough.


November 30, 2013

Bunch of Other Stuff

Well maybe not a bunch. But definitely some.

  • Made an appointment with Kathryn at Dogstar for the next tattoo on the inside of my right forearm on December 23rd. Won't be doing "Fear is a Liar" after all; she talked me out of it - she knows what I want more than I do. Heh. It will be free form, as you'll see the end in the knots. True knot work you can't see the beginning or end of the knot - but it needs to be big so it doesn't close up. Don't have that option on the forearm. I suppose I'll have to match the left forearm at some point 'cause that's how tattoos are - can't have just one. Some people do not get the Pictish inclination for the tattoos. Whatever. It's in my DNA.
  • Speaking of DNA - did I tell you Ancestry.com found my two percent "Uncertain"? Caucasus. (Syria, Iran, Iraq) Seriously not the woodpile I was expecting. Things are more broken down - 24% Ireland. 7% British Isles. 61% Western Europe (My Scandinavian is Danish; my gut feeling.). That explains why I love the rowing machine - all that DNA memory of longboats. Heh.
  • Had a very nice Thanksgiving at Susan and Tony's house. They entertain like I wish I did. No worry, no stress. You're family; hanging around the table nibbling on cheese and drinking cava, everyone at ease. My contributions were bacon jam and cranberry conserve. Talked to The Boy and OSD in the morning. It was a lovely day.


Thanksgiving 2013


  • The dates had died out there for a bit, perhaps due to holidays. Now I have one tomorrow night with a poet from Hillsborough. Here's hoping he doesn't hold his spoon like a two year old
  • Went to the Durham Rock and Shop Market at the Durham Armory today and spent $ on ME. (I'm my favorite person to spend money on.) Bought a fused glass skull necklace by Isabel's Rose and a Durham skyline necklace by Metamorphosis Metals. The bull can be added later if I want. And I want. It pretty much makes the skyline.





  • On the weightlifting front, I did squats with 95 lbs Tuesday night and...my knee hurt. Just saying. Then overhead presses and Turkish Get ups. All my least favorite stuff in one night. UGH.
  • I'm restless and moving the furniture doesn't help. If [when] I dream I'm pregnant, we're in trouble. (new beginnings and change.)
  • A friend gave me this hat. I think of myself as more of a fedora person. What do you think?


Alright, that's it for now.



Durham, It's Not For Everyone



Of the three towns [Carrboro, Chapel Hill, Durham] I've lived in since moving to NC ten and half years ago, none are as urbanly, edgy, gritty, dangerously I-barely-give-a-shit kind of cool as Durham.

Carrboro is arty but a bit weird, like your aunt who does full moon ceremonies in the back yard and reads tarot cards. Poor old Chapel Hill wants to be hip, but falls flat. It's staid, starchy, and makes me think of bow-ties and suspenders.

Raleigh is too big and spread out to be cool, although they try desperately. Their little acorn is so... cute. Whatev Raleigh. We've got a MFing BULL, bitches.

Ten years ago, Durham was very different. Downtown was non-existent; boarded up buildings, zero people walking around. Now, all times of the day and night, people are out walking, shopping, eating.
(The New York Times listed Durham as one of four domestic locations in its compilation of “The 41 Places to Go in 2011,”

Here's a tasty article on the evolution of Durham's local food culture. Rough around the edges, and proud of it. Keep it dirty Durham.

*************************************************************************
Gin Wigmore's "Black Sheep":



November 23, 2013

Time Flies

Whether you're having fun or not.

What the heck was so important that I neglected YOU, my dear readers, for another three weeks?!
(Did you even notice I was AWOL? You can be honest.)

Truth is, not a damn thing.

I hereby promise to do better at posting my usual boring fare. You know, the stuff you read to put you to sleep.

So...

Those of you who are regulars here know that I don't normally discuss undergarments, but these are so amazing, I just have to. Underwear by Naomi & Nicole has a sticky portion (I know, it sounds weird, but trust The Sock Monkey on this, okay?) around the legs that glues those knickers to your rear end in a way that 1.) doesn't hurt, 2.) keeps them in place, and 3.) erases VPLs.
They are GENIUS. (Wonderful Edge. Tag line: no ride no lines) (P.S. don't watch the video, it's just the mannequin ass spinning around for 22 seconds.)


The world of dating. Yep. Still doing that. It's almost like its own full time job.
The 31 year old (K.) disappeared for a bit, but he's back. We have not had date #2  yet, but we will, my pretty, oh we will.
Had a second date with another gentleman, let's call him A; very nice, easy to talk to, seemingly normal.
First date was coffee. All good.
Date #2 involved food and, dear Jesu Christo y'all, I HAD TO AVERT MY EYES - because, (oh babies, I can hardly speak of it)... he held the spoon in his fist!
In the deal breaker category, that's damn close to a comb-over (comb overs - just stop that shit. Shave that pate and be proud.). The worst part, besides doing it in the first place, there was no shame. So, we either never see each other again OR we never eat together again. At least nothing that involves spoons... (Nooooooo...not the soup!) Sigh.

In the weight lifting arena, I dead lifted 170 pounds Thursday night, which is ten pounds over my previous personal best. Our darling Barbell Club coach Paul, (who is as hilarious as he is cute), when asked if I was ever going to get past 160 pounds said, "I'm tired of hearing you whine about being stuck at 160. Put some more weight on and do it." And I did. Ten reps worth.
My upper body sadly, is still unworthy of reporting a personal best. I can barely do 40 pounds in an overhead press. My bench press is only slightly better at 70 pounds. And my squats...well, they are basically a non-entity. I do squats with a kettle bell and risers. The dead lift is my crowning glory. That big Scandinavian arse is good for something - ha!

One more thing: we bloggers are a community of sorts and Andrea over at Go Ask Alice is having a hard time. She lost her cat a few months ago, and now her dog Brio is fighting a losing battle with kidney failure. Please think on her and hers kindly.

Here's some old school good stuff:



And this never gets old either:



November 3, 2013

Where the Heck Have I Been?

I've been out of commission (in the blog writing category) for two weeks. Yikes!

Here's why:
At the urging of my [young] neighbor and ofttimes work out partner, I joined OKCupid and have been dating! Egads!

Y'all, dating is HARD WORK for an introvert! But when I decide to do something, I'm in for a penny, in for a pound.

I had two dates last Saturday and was relieved (say it with me - RELIEVED) when date #3 didn't show on Sunday. Used the unexpected, but welcome, alone time to savor a really fantastic piece of German Chocolate cake at Francesca's, bought the cutest watch ever at Vaguely Reminiscent and went home.

This past Friday I had a very nice date with a 31 year old. They Lord.
Anon CP wryly commented, "Apple, tree", alluding to my mother and the much younger evil BF. Just as I took a swig of coffee. Said coffee almost came out my nose from laughing. But guess what? I would totally go out with him again. (and shhhhh... if he went in for a kiss, I so would.)

This morning I had a lovely coffee date with an age appropriate gentleman who's from New Orleans originally. You can hear it in his voice (it's a lovely accent).
Thursday I have a date with someone from Charlotte; scary amount of things in common with him, including being a seventh generation Floridian, born in J'ville. (We've determined we are not cousins. Whew!)
And this coming Saturday, date #2 with date #2 from last Saturday.

All that reading of profiles, answering messages, and deleting the [surprisingly numerous] ones from 22 year olds who think ancient ladies such as myself are needing to be laid by them, (really?!), is exhausting.

Meanwhile, the leaves are finally turning:
East Campus of Duke University
Andrea of Go Ask Alice sent me the cutest Sock Monkey calendar. But even more special was the lovely note she wrote (she said I was elegant. Can you imagine?!). When (that's right, when) I go to Portland, I am so visiting her and Alice.

What the heck else? I think that's it for now. Stay tuned....



"Holy Holy Holy" by Wye Oak
Songwriters: Wasner, Jennifer Lynn
Holy, holy, holy
There is no other story
Holy, holy, holy
It is blindly seeking my story

Hold me, hold me, hold me
Would you like to know me?
And don't fall unless to free
And lonely seeking as they need

Further choice and secrets our heart stores
We are the only way in my real world
A children for the blessed, for an old count
A tri-star upon your mind in my delight

All they say is, can we contain this?
A human, you're his precious
And I, oh sure, know this
When everyone should know this

Holy, holy, holy
There is no other story
It is blindly seeking my story
We will be who we want to be

Further choice and secrets our heart store
We are the only way in my real world
A children for the blessed, for an old count
A tri-star upon your mind in my delight

Ah, you will be mine
Ah, you will be mine
Ah, you will be mine
Ah, you will be mine

Holy, holy, holy
There is no other story
Holy, holy, holy





October 13, 2013

Fingers Crossed


  • Thank you for all the good thoughts - they're working! The knot in my thigh is much smaller. Still having excruciating leg cramps almost every night, even with drinking lots of water and taking potassium. Ugh. (Feel free to add that to the good thoughts list)
  • We're in Oregon weather mode, which would be fine if we were in Oregon; looking like it will continue through Tuesday or Wednesday.
  • Finally corralled Mr. Wilde into a carrier yesterday (still possess all of my limbs!) and took him to the vet for a nail trim. Ah, blessed silence - no more clickclickclick! He was mad at every living thing in the house when he got back. Didn't want me to pet him, wouldn't accept a piece of chicken. That's pissed.
  • Acorns are falling from the two big white oaks in the side yard; sometimes it sounds like a hailstorm when I'm in the home "office" (a.k.a. my guest room closet).
  • After our abbreviated walk around the Duke East Campus yesterday, we ate at the adorable little Hummingbird Bakery. Oh my god - butterscotch custard! Then went shoe shopping right next door. Custard and SHOES! Could life be more perfect?! I bought a pair of earrings (they were in my price range, whereas the shoes were not): 

Sterling silver earrings by Karen Schmelzer

  • It's almost Oscar Wilde's 159th birthday (the man, not the cat.).
  • That's all I have dear readers. Have a good week. And thanks for all the love.






October 11, 2013

I'm In A Powerful Bad Mood, Y'all


Powerful.
Bad.
Mood.

Last night in Barbell Club I thought I had one more Zercher Squat in me. I truly did.

Turns out, I didn't.

A muscle, ligament, tendon, something - lurchedpoppedrolled over the bone at the top of my thigh when I did that one more squat.

Now Paul didn't say do one more - that was all me. ARGH! I FINALLY find the thing I love to do and go and injury myself. So pissed off at myself!

Today I arnica-ed the knot to high heaven using both the oral pellets and the topical gel. It held up during kickboxing tonight; I was very careful not to do squats or lunges (when it hurts the most).

And I am missing my mother today. Missing her as in needing a Kleenex now because I'm crying (again) missing her.

And it's been raining for years.

And yellow jackets are finding my car so interesting for some reason. And you all know how I feel about them.

And I'm almost a year older.

And I can't get Oscar in a carrier to get his nails clipped, so his hind nails clickclickclick on the floor and it is driving me mad. If I have to call the mobile [expensive] vet, I am going to be very very upset with him.

All first world problems. I am well aware.

There's more, but I don't feel like talking about it here. Not now. Not yet.

If your inclinations run to this, my wounded thigh would be most grateful for a prayer, or a candle lit, or good thoughts thunk.
Thanks.

Good night dear readers.

October 6, 2013

The Worst Part

of writing this blog is thinking of a damn title for the post. Not all the time of course. But often enough.

Anyway.


  • All that shit I've been doing must be working, (even though the damn bingo wings and menopot are still very much present), because yesterday I bought a size smaller pair of jeans. Just never you mind about the spandex content in said jeans. (A.K.A."Fiddle dee dee" in Southern girl speak.) As Anon CP said, if they zip and snap - that's all that matters. 
  • Speaking of all that shit working, I joined a bodybuilding site to track my progress somewhere other than Facebook. It's a site I reference for the name of whatever we did in Barbell Club (what was that painful thing that crushed my clavicle called again?). I currently have three "friends" - all extremely buff 20 somethings. Hilarious. I would squash them like a bug - emotionally, physically, and mentally.
  • While we're on the subject of clavicles, doesn't it sounds like it should be somewhere below the belt? Maybe that's just me.
  • Wish I'd taken a picture of the leaf in the shape of a whale fluke last week, still thinking about it.
  • Yesterday: an old woman, completely unaware of us, sat on the steps of her little mill house, lost in the blossoms of the impatiens on the step next to her. Such a poignant evocative image, but a photo seemed too invasive. She reminded me of Mom. 
  • Today I thought my steam cleaner had died - alas and alack! The end of the world as I know it! But then it miraculously was healed and floor cleaning commenced. Best $150 I ever spent. 
  • What the hell else? After two months (tomorrow actually), the Old Sea Dog [OSD] and I are still...something. In communication. We'll leave it at that, shall we?
  • It was 91 degrees here yesterday, y'all. At least it wasn't humid. What the hell happened to autumn?! I was not happy to turn on the AC again, let me tell you. 
  • My next tattoo will be "Fear Is A Liar" on my right forearm. If Dogstar will ever call me back. I'll ask Kathryn to jus it up with some knot work. Like this: 


    Thought for the week: ‎"Wherever there is a human being, there is an opportunity for kindness." Seneca  

    Go forth and be kind, readers. 



September 29, 2013

Very Interesting and Random Stuff

There's been over one thousand page views for "When I Was Fourteen", but - only one comment (my cousin commented privately via email, so really two comments).

I find that odd.

Is it just too shameful or personal to comment on? Too painful?

Frankly, I'm not writing this shit to get comments. Don't get me wrong, I like comments, they are generally affirming and who the heck doesn't like that. But they're not my reason for living.

But obviously that post struck a chord with a LOT of people, because it is my most read post EVER in my tiny three and a bit year history of blogging.
Interesting.

*******************************************************************

Thursday at Barbell Club, we did deadlifts - my favorite. We worked up to our max weight and did one rep . My max weight was 160 lbs. 

Here's what a deadlift looks like: 



***************************************************************

My phone camera has an effect called Posterize; it makes you look like a paint by number painting.
It hides a multitudes of sins. I love it.






Hope your week is good, dear readers.

What A Day

Yesterday was N.C. Pride. Several of us went to Charlie's on Ninth Street in Durham for the parade where our hairdresser, JP, had saved us front row seats.

Lovely day for a parade

Photo credit - D.F. That's me on the right

All manner of persuasions showed up; there was a lot of love on Ninth Street. Everyone happy to be there.

My favorite float said simply, "God Adores You." 
I teared up. 
I did.  

Then I reenacted this scene from "Elf" when I saw Mary K Mart (from Drag Bingo) on the AAS-C float (Mary K Mart - I know HER!):




There were some haters somewhere, but I didn't see them. My Libra comes out around people like that. And not in the peacemaker sense. More like the iron fist in the velvet glove way - only the gloves are off.
I want to mash their buttons (as we say here in the South). Mash. Them. Hard.

I had one Bloody Mary too many. Which made me really friendly. And inclined to take tattoo pictures with people I met like two seconds ago. 

Photo Credit - D.F.

Photo Credit - D.F. (OSD said I looked "like some bad ass biker chick.")
Just had the best time.

And once again felt proud to live in Durham.

September 22, 2013

Lazy Day

Good thing it's Pajama Day. Fed the damn cats, then went back to bed until 11:30. Mmmmmm. 
Wish someone would bring me coffee in bed. Alas, that would be my own self having to do that.
PJD footwear. This is as girly as I get y'all.


Anyway, yesterday - the wedding! 
It was oh so sweet. Lovely. Heartwarming. Everyone in the church laid hands on them and blessed them. They served us communion. I cried. A lot.

Wish this wasn't so blurry. The look of love! 

B. and his honorary (and honored) moms

E., our intrepid Drag Bingo leader R. (sans drag), N.

N. and I went to A Southern Season afterward for ice tea and shrimp hushpuppies. (yum) After that I met another friend at Med Deli (my favorite!) for a late supper. Came home and had a couple of glasses of Prosecco to toast the happy couple. 

A sweet, sweet day. 



September 15, 2013

So Excited

Two young men we know from Drag Bingo (not drag queens) are getting married next Saturday.
I cried about three times last night I was so damn happy for them.

B.'s parents are not supportive (they're not being ugly about it, they just can't get on board, even though they love C.), so Nancy and I are Mom stand-in's.

I told you we are on the Planning Committee for next year, didn't I? Maybe not. B. is also on committee.
Seriously excited.

***********************************************************
I love this poem. Lifted from a moon, worn as if it had been a shell:

Success Story

My clothes are perfectly contoured
to my body. my shoes & socks
fit just right. My cat is a delightful
intelligent animal. My apartment
is great. The right location,
cheap rent. I eat the best food.
My friends love me. I adore them.
My lover is terrific & beautiful.
The sun is shining. There are trees
even in the slums in Washington.
I have tons of money & a gorgeous
air conditioner. Great art hangs
on my wall. I live a spine-tingling life
of delirious sex & intense happiness.


Terence Winch

*******************************************
I cannot stop listening to this song:

"Slipping Away"


Wait just a little bit more
I feel you cause your breath is burning holes in my door
You love it when there's blood on your tongue and you're ready for war
But wait just a little bit more
Take what you came here for
I know you and I know you can't take anymore
You got me with your fingers on my throat and my head on the floor
You're taking what you came here for
So this is how I'm slipping away
Yea this is how you want me to play
You know I love it but it's stopping today
I'm slipping away
Oh I think that I should go
My house is burning out of control I know you hate it and you want me to stay I'm slipping away
Wait just a little bit more I'm watching as your lips are moving towards that horn
You're ready but I'm not quite dead and I'm not quite yours
So wait just a little bit more
Take what you came here for I'm ready for you flames crawling up my door
And if you give me just a minute I'll be out on the floor
You're taking what you came here for
So this is how I'm slipping away
Yea this is how you want me to play
You know I love it but it's stopping today I'm slipping away
Oh I think that I should go
My house is burning out of control I know you hate it and you want me to stay I'm slipping away
Wait just a little bit more
You hold me like I've never been held before
Your spider web is wrapping around my head like a big black hole
So wait just a little bit more
Take what you came here for I trusted and I promised to believe, I swore
That you would be the first and the last but I did not know
You take me but you'll take no more
So this is how I'm slipping away
Now this is how you want me to play
You know I love it but it's stopping today I'm slipping away
Oh I think that I should go
My house is burning out of control I know you hate it and you want me to stay I'm slipping away

******************************************

And now I'm going to drag myself out on Pajama Day for a Med Deli run. 


September 8, 2013

Only Way Out

For the time being, The Troubles are over; I'm no longer hollow. So there's that.

No Empower today, it's my day of rest. Tomorrow night it begins again with TRX. Tuesday and Thursday: Barbell Club; Wednesday: personal trainer; Friday: Cardio Kickboxing. You can see who is kicking my ass here: http://becomepowerful.com/about/the-team/. Tiffani is my PT. Angelo is the kickboxing instructor. Paul does the barbell club. Elizabeth and Jordan teach the TRX classes.

Three things:


















  1. I have biceps now
  2. I deadlifted 100 pounds Thursday night
  3. Some part of me is always full of the pain (this sums it up nicely) (Paul said he is always sore; you just get used to it. Bad, bad answer Paul.)

Also, there are bruises all over my body. 

I need this tattooed on my arm so I can read it every second:

I am also loving Robert Montgomery, a Scottish artist based in London, who writes poems and then sets them on fire. My favorites are 2, 3, 14, and 15. Just click on the number.

Been listening to Dessa. Enjoying her A LOT.






That's all I got. Oh no, wait. One more, not Dessa. Fun David Byrne song.


Have a good week readers. Kick ass and take names.

I will be.


September 2, 2013

Hollow

That's how I feel today.

Hollow, caved-in, empty, hungover (mentally, not physically). It could be due to not eating anything until now, but I think it's mostly due to the other.

I made myself get dressed and drove to the Mediterranean Deli in Chapel Hill; came home with chicken kabob, chickpea and spinach salad, baked okra, avocado feta salad, and a piece of cheese baklava. (I could easily eat there every single day)
The homeless man on the corner said "Thank you baby", and told me to have a blessed day when I gave him $5. He had a nice smile.

I listened to The White Stripes "De Stijl" so loud my ears almost bled.

I needed to fill up that hollow place.






September 1, 2013

Just Dammit

WTF with looking him up on Facebook?!

Because now, that girl, my dear sweet girl, is screaming back to consciousness, clawing her way out from under the pillow.

And out of the corner of her eye - seeing the girls she was babysitting silhouetted in the doorway.


Those girls. Oh my god, those girls. I can't see their faces; the hall light was behind them. And just maybe I am really glad about that. For Pete's fucking sake, that was THE WORST THING about it. Worse than being torn apart, worse than passing out for the only time in my life, worse than being suffocated. Worse than the entire school knowing. Worse than my parents knowing.

No, this isn't a new memory, it's always been there. It's such a horrible little detail, I preferred to leave it out.

What did that do to them? What could they possibly have thought? That he was murdering me? Did they worry it would be like that for them?

Dear Jesus. Those girls.

I'm glad there is no alcohol in the house. Because I feel like drinking myself into a stupor.

Stirring the Pot

I feel like vomiting. Just now, I searched on Facebook for the [no longer] young man who raped me.

There he was; in one picture, holding a little girl, a toddler, who I assume is his daughter. Another picture shows him with her in her graduation cap and gown. I kept thinking, how would he feel if someone did to her what he did to me? My shaking hands flew to my mouth. Seeking comfort, I called the Old Sea Dog - who was not available. Just like when it happened all those years ago, there was only me. I trembled and wailed, rocked and cried, holding my chest, my heart, my torn asunder fourteen year old self.

Besides killing Wormtongue, the other part of doing this Happy Body Coaching is dealing with the stuff in my past that makes me want to be invisible - bad things happen when men notice me, (Bloody fucking theme. I was molested by the library janitor when I was seven.).
Things that keep the passionate, lovable, beautiful woman I am under wraps. I shouldn't be surprised that this is coming up - I'm stirring the damned pot.

The only way out is through.


 -










Declaration


Friday, (if I had a dollar for every time I spelled Friday "Firday" first, I could buy a summer house in the Hamptons.), I had my session with The Happy Body Coach.

And the Medusa that is my ex-husband made an appearance yet again.

Please know that the ex and I have made our peace and buried the hatchet (and not in his head, amazingly).
But the tape that he "gave" me all those years ago still plays on in my head. On a loop.
At this point dealing with it is kind of pissing me off, like dusting. I did this already! Why do I have to keep doing it?!

The last six months of my very short marriage were, shall we say, not good.
Every night, before he went up to bed, he would read off the list of things that were wrong with me, along with the myriad of ways I had fucked up that day. From not vacuuming correctly, to his lunch not being hot (it was hot when I brought it to him at 12:30, but somehow it was my fault he didn't get to eat it until 2). He wanted breakfast at 6:30 AM AND he wanted me to be happy about doing that. (Actually on that count, I wasn't unhappy, I just have Bitchy Resting Face. Heh.)

So...the tape goes like this (just the three high points):
  1. No one will ever want you again. 
  2. You don't look normal. 
  3. You are a dud. 
Subsequently, every break-up, every mistaken "he likes me", every unnoticed attempt at on-line dating, every "I like you, but...", just confirmed the tape. And thus, on it played. Over. And over. And over.

Until it became, not his voice, but MINE. My own personal Wormtongue, haunting my inner Eowyn.

Here then, is my declaration (and this also applies to my rapist):

Guess what motherfucker - I WANT ME. 
I am a strong, vibrant, BEAUTIFUL woman and you have no business with me. You are beneath me.
RIGHT NOW, I claim back my power, my beauty, my magnificence. 
I claim back my face, my body, my sexual self.
I claim back that young girl - that adventurous, brilliant, brave, sparkling, witty, vivacious, funny girl. 
I AM NOT FOR THE LIKES OF YOU.
I belong to me, and I will protect, cherish, love, nurture myself. TREASURE myself. 
I AM a PEARL and you are swine.
I am a dangerous, powerful woman and if you aren't up to that, get the fuck away from me.
I WILL NOT APOLOGIZE FOR MYSELF EVER AGAIN. 

Astrid, Eowyn, me. We are one. And we are not to be trifled with.



August 25, 2013

Astrid

Is the name of my inner Viking. It means "God[dess] + fair, beautiful". I'm channeling her big time lately.


It occurred to me recently that I have been sleeping for a long time. The last seventeen years were about my parents: either being with, worrying about, or grieving for. Before that, The Boy. 

Remember my "Frustration" post? Well, that old fisherman friend referred to in the post has lit a fire under this Scandinavian/Scots-Irish arse and I'm hell bent on finding that adventurous girl I used to be.

I've joined a gym; I'm doing a session with a "love your body" coach next week. When I'm in kickboxing class (which I LOVE), that Astrid is front and center. 

My raven tattoo (finished a year ago this month) heralded the return of the warriorpoet. The beserker. The woad-painted Pict. 

Look out world - I'm awake. And I'm coming. 

August 18, 2013

When I Was Fourteen

I was raped.

Many people who know me intimately don't know that (guess they do now).

The experience is mostly factual for me now, so I'm often unaware that saying it out loud and/or admitting it could be construed as dropping a bombshell.

Interesting that I just used the words - "admitting it". Makes it sound as if I'm confessing to something. Like it was my fault.

And in fact, I did neatly absolve that asshole from any responsibility for twenty three fucking years. Funny how girls/women do that. Like we're Jesus Christ himself, sent to take your burden and relieve your guilt.

The term "date rape" did not exist then. Rape happened to females who "asked for it" by wearing their skirts too short; rapists were strangers who lurked in bushes, not popular sixteen year old high school boys.

But for my best friend at the time, I would not have had the fortitude to slog my way through the shame and embarrassment of each school day, (ninth grade! Can you imagine?!), because that fucker told what felt to me like the entire god damned school. What he told them I can't imagine, but pretty sure it wasn't, "I raped her, then tried to suffocate her with a pillow after she passed out from the pain and came to, screaming."
She threatened to kick the ass of any sniggering girl (wtf happened to sisterhood?!), and kept assuring me I was not going to die, in spite of barely being able to walk for three days and bleeding for ten.

And as if all of school knowing wasn't enough, through a twisted, fucked-up turn of events, my parents and grandmother were aware of the situation. Because I had invited him over to where I was babysitting - IT WAS MY FAULT (said my fourteen year old self), I ASKED FOR IT. They sent me to a psychiatrist, who asked me myriad questions about my sex life (my sex life?! what sex life?!). I refused to go back. And we never spoke of it again. And they thought I was a slut.

It was all too much. I took a shitload of my grandmother's Darvons (for numbing purposes) and climbed a hill with a razor blade in hand to finish the deed.

But Kodiak turned on all her glorious glory for the sunset that night and saved my life. (up on that hill, if you dig down far enough in the right spot, you'll find that razor blade) This little Libra just couldn't leave all that beauty. I woozily shouldered the cross, climbed down the hill, and got on with it.

Many years later, a friend of a friend, a runner, was raped. And suddenly, I could not stop thinking about what happened all those years ago, but what happened to me did not equal rape yet (I invited him over...).
When my friend said their runners group was taking a self defense class called Model Mugging, (just can the "oh you learn how to mug models?" jokes.), I was in. (The BF and I watched a news program about MM; I said if I take a self defense class, it's going to be that one.)

Model Mugging Weapons Class. That's the instructor, J. I was monitoring the "fight".
I signed up to volunteer immediately after the class was over and was an assistant instructor for the next three years. It was always incredible to me that these women, who had lived through the most horrific experiences (thankfully I remember only a couple), had soldiered on, married, raised families, were productive members of society. We women really are amazing. We take the shit and grow a garden.

During those three years, while listening to them pour out their stories, watching them face their fears head on and win, it slowly began to dawn on me that what happened me at fourteen was indeed rape. It didn't matter I had invited him over. It didn't matter we were making out.
I said NO! I said STOP! I said I didn't want to.

I cast down that cross and put the blame squarely on his fucking head. And then they helped me grieve for my virginity, my innocence. (thank you)

That bastard probably deflowered half our high school. I've often wondered how many of the other girls' experiences were non-consensual. But we were all, each of us, keeping it secret, keeping it safe.

Carrying his blame. Carrying his guilt.


August 11, 2013

What is Wrong With People?!

Yesterday, before seeing the movie "The Way, Way Back" (highly recommend, BTW), Anon CP and I did a wee bit of shopping. I had one of her sons in the car and we were chatting about this and that as we headed down 15/501.

A bit of car ballet started happening in front of us, and then a bit more, each time more aggressive. A gray car (didn't notice anything other than it had a spoiler - never a good sign), seemed to be causing most of the kerfuffle and somehow, it unfortunately ended up next to me.

The driver was a young white male, about 19 or 20. I mouthed "WTF dude!?" out my driver's side window. In hindsight, not the wisest move.

Immediately he slid in behind me and started tailgating, flipping me off through his sunroof, calling me a bitch, actually, a fat bitch, and making throat cutting gestures.

Flipping someone off is so laughably second grade, and fat bitch, c'mon, seriously not very creative, so whatever. But the throat cutting gesture (several times) freaked me out.

The 14 year old child in the car said (endearing himself to me FOREVER), "He's fat, hope he doesn't sit on us." Or something to that effect. He probably thought the whole thing was pretty fun, and was up for a scrap. I had to explain that I was in the wrong for even engaging with someone that moronic and don't be stupid like me.

Anyway, because this douche was still up my fat bitch ass, there was no way I was going to let him follow us to the store and headed towards a police sub-station. After about a mile or so, he got bored with threatening to kill me and roared off to make someone else's life miserable.

Future of America. So proud.