Friday, April 29, 2005

Beauty is in the eyes...

...of the construction worker. Please. Let me explain.

It is a miracle. This morning I left my house at 8:30 and arrived at work at 9:00. THIRTY MINUTES people. Why is this a miracle? Because usually it takes no less then 40 minutes. The reason for the DRASTIC reduction in time? They *finally* opened the new stretch of Mopac (Loop 1 for you non-Austinites) that bridges William Cannon, meaning those folks coming from the deep south of Austin no longer have to exit, wait through 2-3 lights at Wm Cannon, then get back on Mopac. In short -- wow. It opened a couple of days ago, but I have been running late the last few days so I did not notice/wallow in the time savings until today. And? As I steadily drove over the new bridge, there was a gaggle of construction workers standing behind some cones in the shoulder-to-be, and I swear, they looked like they were going to swoon. They stood back, hands in back pockets, admiring their handiwork. I imagined they were thinking "It's a beautiful thing. Traffic. Moving. In Austin." I whole-heartedly agree, and THANK YOU very much!

In other news, as I took a bleary-eyed shower this morning, I kept seeing something out of the corner of my eye. Not like Psycho or anything, just something. Finally I pried my eyes open enough to see that it was a mayfly. Mosquito hawk. Whatever. In my shower, with me. Some people might have freaked. But me? I shrugged and figured it would eat any stealthy mosquitos hiding in my shower trying to bite my delicate nakedness. So, yeah. Me and the mosquito hawk, we bonded, naked, in the shower.

And that's all I got on this drizzly yet fabulous Friday morning...

Thursday, April 28, 2005

Down by the river

This is where i think i'd like to be today. And i'm not even a big water lover. Except when it comes to baths, of course.

I am so close to the river at work -- sorry, the "lake". Silly Texans. Sometimes we even go to The Pier for lunch. But it's dangerous to do so on pretty days like today, because the temptation to jump in and just float downstream is almost overwhelming. So on pretty days like today, I stay in and eat at my desk. Because it's easier on my psyche. Sad? Perhaps. But it's all about survival, people.

So Babs just sent me my horoscope for today, ala Jonathan Cainer, and I have to admit it's eerie. Check it out:

"You don't have to prove anything to anyone. You don't have to validate your existence by owning or achieving something. The Joneses of this world, don't need to be kept up with, they need to be kept away from. Somehow, though, you now feel as if you are under pressure to do something that doesn't come very naturally to you. Don't just steam ahead out of a sense of obligation, ask yourself why you are even bothering to play a certain game?"

Huh. It seems so right on, and yet, what the heck could it be talking about? I guess the glaringly obvious thing would be the CJ Situation. But -- I don't feel any sense of obligation to him, and I'm actually rather enjoying the game. Hmm. Could it be talking about work? The competitiveness and my personal need to do well? The constant pressure? Maybe. But isn't that normal at work? I do like the part where it says I don't have to validate my existence by owning or achieving something. Because that, my friends, is the story of my life.

This week in particular, after witnessing one of my best friends give birth to her daughter, I have been thinking a lot about children, or my lack thereof. Childbirth? It ain't glamorous, people -- yet it's so beautifully natural. It's breathtaking to see a woman's body in action, doing what it was designed to do. Make, nurture, then birth another human being. Boobs? They're for feeding this person. Hips? They're for birthing this person. Belly? It's meant to carry this person for 9 months. And other girl parts? Well... you get what I'm saying.

The whole experience has me feeling like so many things I spend energy worrying about are completely insignificant. Brings me back to my lament of late, wondering what my whole Purpose on this Earth is. If it's not to raise fabulous little people to carry on civilization, then what is it? Except. The horoscope sets me free! I don't need to prove my worth by achievement. Well. Sounds appealing, but i'm not so sure about that.

I keep thinking of that Army commercial where the daughter is trying to justify to her father why she went and done signed up for that thar war. What is it she says? "If I help just one person be successful, then that makes me successful, right?" This is kinda deep in a scary shouldn't-be-in-a-commercial kinda way. And I'm even in advertising.

So, what if I never have kids? And it's a very real possibility, given my age, situation and current mindset. Is it enough that I cherish my role in the lives of other people's children whom I love? Does it count that I want to be a positive influence in their lives, a person they trust and who they feel they can always talk to? Someone their parents feel comfortable letting their children talk to? Is that enough? Being Auntie Lisa, or surrogate Auntie Lisa?

Ok, what about that AND a life-altering novel?

(I will write more about the birth at some point. This is all I can manage at the moment. But don't worry -- I will NOT forget.)

Wednesday, April 27, 2005

Things that bug me

I am working on a couple of longer entries, but just to update, I decided to give you another list. So here are 10 things that are bugging me today:

1. My headphones are all tangled up in a big knot and all I want to do is listen to Madonna's "Music" on my iTunes, dammit.
2. I forgot all my meds today, so I have nothing, nada, not even Aleve. I'm going to feel like crap later. Or tomorrow.
3. I was so bone tired last night that I hurriedly washed my hair, put nothing in it (i.e., product), and went to bed with it wet -- and today was the first day in 3 years that someone complimented me on my hair.
4. I choked on a pineapple at an important client meeting this morning and now my throat hurts.
5. I freaked out about my sore throat for about an hour before I remembered choking on the pineapple and put 2 and 2 together.
6. I have to write three freelance passages tonight because AS USUAL I have procrastinated to the very end. Well, not the VERY end -- the deadline is Friday...
7. I slept poorly last night because I was so terrified I'd be late to the 8:30 meeting this morning.
8. I had to attend an 8:30 meeting this morning.
9. Jess woke me up at 5 for catnip again.
10. I have been trying to post this for over an hour but blogger has been down -- grrr.

Monday, April 25, 2005

I am not a loser

Ok y'all, I just reread my school lunch post from Friday and realized I made myself sound really pathetic and friendless. And this actually wasn't the case. The real issue was not my lack of friends, because I have always had plenty of friends (except on the first day at a new school, duh). The real issue was my lack of confidence. I can't really remember a time when I didn't worry that I would be perceived as inferior. I spent a LOT of time worrying about what other people thought of me. Way too much time. This rampant low-self image finally tapered off when I got to college. I really blossomed in college, being away from the cliques and able to "start over", discovering who and how I wanted to be. I learned way more about myself in college than about any academic subject. But I still do care what people think, and am sheepish to say I make decisions too often based on perception. I hope I don't have to be 80 yrs old, 500 lbs. and bald before I can relax and say "you know what? either you like me or you don't." I hope I reach that point sooner.

I still keep in touch with several friends from my early childhood days. There's Meredith, who I met in 4th grade in Kansas. I keep up with what's going on with Kirsten, who was my best friend when I was 3-4 years old, in Tennessee. Also Melissa, from 2nd grade. From high school, I have kept up with Ann and Christine, but everyone else was expendable - HA! I do know what Chris is up to, through the grapevine, but we haven't actually talked in about 10 years. WOW. Anyway...

I just didn't want anyone to feel sorry for me -- see! This whole entry is just a testament to what I said about worrying what people think of me. Wow. So. I already wrote it, so i'm not deleting it on principle. But you get the point - right??

Friday, April 22, 2005

The scars from early social trauma: school lunch

Something in the kitchen at work smells like school food. Remember? That cafeteria smell? An odd mixture of bleach and salty meat? Mmmmm. This made me think back to lunchtime at school. I just now realized that lunchtime was always traumatic for me. All the way through school.

Elementary school: they used to file all the kids, class by class, into the cafeteria in a long line. You had to make damn sure you were in line next to your friends or you were screwed. So we would file through the lunch line, get our food, and then file onto those long sticky tables, in the same order in which we stood in line. And if you were unlucky enough to be the last kid on one side? Then tough, your lunch buddy would have to file over to the other side and go all the way to the other end. Every day I would sweat it out, worrying that I was going to be stranded on the end of a table with a smelly boy on one side and a snooty girl across from me. We were totally at the mercy of the teachers who shoved us into line. My whole social life in elementary school depended on luck, pure and simple. I remember this routine distinctly from my elementary school in Ft. Leavenworth, Kansas. To add insult to injury, after eating, we had recess for 30 minutes or so, and that was a whole other social nightmare to overcome. Anyway, it was probably like that in 3rd and 4th grade, but I don't really remember 5th or 6th; I'm thinking maybe we could "float" and find a space at any table by then. Luckily, it's foggy. Hmmm, just realized I could write a whole other blog entry about Recess and all that I learned in my years hanging on the monkey bars, doing penny drops and cheating death by centimeters, playing Red Rover and coming home with bruises on my arms I had to explain to my parents.

Then there was middle school, which was just plain traumatic in and of itself because we moved to San Antonio in just in time for 7th grade -- and here in Texas, middle school included grades 6-8. In Kansas, we had junior high, grades 7-9. So automatically, in addition to being the new kid in school, I was also thrown into a large school where you had to CHANGE CLASSES and stuff. This was my first locker, and to this very day I have stress dreams about being at school and not being able to find my locker, or worse, forgetting the combination. The other kids at my middle school seemed so much cooler and more sophisticated than I. They had already mastered the whole "middle school" thing and were savvy 7th graders now, allowed to made fun of the dorky 6th graders. I felt like a backwards bumpkin straight off the hay bale in Kansas. These were slick city kids (incidentally, the same kids I'd gone to school with in K-2, before KS, but that's for another day) who wore MAKEUP and designer jeans. It had never even occurred to me to wear makeup. And designer jeans? Well money was tight back then, and while we never ever went without, I had only one pair of Gloria Vanderbilt jeans I got at Marshall's (ahh, Marshall's, I miss you -- you were the only thing that saved me in the days of Jordache and Izods). Other kids wore Polos and parachute pants and rolled up jeans and penny loafers and "jellies", those weird, cheap plastic shoes. (Actually, I was totally down with the Jellies, because you could get them for like $3 at Walmart.) The girls carried purses. PURSES! I didn't know anyone in KS that carried a purse but my mom. It was humiliating, all the things I didn't know.

And lunch in middle school was, of course, still just as dreadful. Determined not to be stuck eating alone my first day in middle school, I hurriedly and carelessly befriended a girl in whatever class I had right before lunchtime. This girl was a smart kid who had been moved ahead a grade, so she was actually a year younger than me. I got stuck being her "best friend" until 9th grade, our freshman year in high school, when I stole the boy she had a crush on. And folks, I'm not proud, but that was one of the most triumphant moments of my adolescence, as this girl had terrorized and degraded me for 3 years. Looking back on it, she was the first overtly passive aggressive person I ever knew. To hide her own insecurities about being younger, she continually put me down and made me feel even more uncool than I already was. She isolated me and made herself my only real friend, and made me feel like I was lucky to have her. (Gosh. Cult, anyone?). This behaviour spurned a lot of pent up resentment, and it all came out that fateful day in 9th grade when Chris kissed me in the alley by the cemetary. But that is another story.

High school. Here's where lunches got REALLY horrifying. Because now, there were two lunch periods -- Early Lunch and Late Lunch. And you were totally at the mercy of the computer that generated your schedule, you had no choice in the matter. So every year, it was a crapshoot whether you'd have the same lunch as all your friends. Luckily, I only got screwed on this one year -- but it was my senior year. My boyfriend and our little group had early lunch and I had late. My best friend (this was Ann, the middle-school girl was long gone) was in the work program, so she left every day before lunch to go be a receptionist somewhere. So here it was, my senior year in high school, and I had no one to eat lunch with. I dreaded lunch more than ever. I begged Chris to skip his class and spend at least a few minutes at lunch with me. He did this too often and didn't graduate on time -- but that, too, is for another day. Occasionally we would sneak off campus and go to his house where he'd make me fried ham sandwiches. Our relationship was tumultuous, as always, with dramatic breakups and makeups. So at some point I started eating lunch with The Mexicans. They were a group of yes, Mexican girls, who were Ann's friends really, but tolerated me because I was her friend. Tolerate is really the perfect word for what they did. They let me stand behind them in the lunch line and try to make small talk. They allowed me to sit by them, at the end of the table. There was one girl, Marie, who I talked to in Biology a lot, but when she was with this group, she treated me like an outsider. There was the tall, mean girl, Lucy, who never spoke to me, not once. She wasn't really mean, just...cold. Sylvia was my best bet, as she and Ann and I hung out sometimes, but it just wasn't really comfortable ever and I always felt like a tagalong. As the year got harder and extraneous events occurred that I won't go into right now, I eventually had my mom write a note to the school saying I could drive home for lunch every day. We had a closed campus, so this was a big deal. Thank you, mom. I hated lunch.

Well this is long. Who knew I had that much pent up stuff to say about school lunches! On a lighter note, my favorite lunch was always the chicken-fried steak with those fluffy fake mashed potatoes and canned green beans. And a roll -- always a roll. A yummy, soft roll that I would split in half and stuff w/ my CFS, making a crude sandwich. It was delightful. I also really liked School Pizza. Remember? The rectangles of frozen pizza wrapped in cellophane, sold by the slice? Loved it. Pizza Hut has nothing on School Pizza.

Well, that's all I have to say about school lunches.
What was your favorite school food?

Thursday, April 21, 2005


Omigosh. Ok. I need to chill. But. I am deeply disturbed.

I was just vacuuming the 4 lbs. of cat hair from the edges of my kitchen. Piper was perched on top of the fridge watching. Megs was watching from my bed. Jess was nowhere to be found, but i'm guessing he was somewhere under the couch. The cats were curious because they have seen me vacuum the kitchen before maybe, oh, twice in the past 5 years. But I digress.

Anyway, I'm going along, sucking up giant fur-balls and getting extreme satisfaction that can only come from the klinking the vacuum makes as it digests pellets of catfood, litter, and all the gross klinky things on my floor. Ok, if this were someone else's house, I would not walk barefoot. But I'm trying to FIX it, I swear!

So I'm busily sucking up random things, and I swirl around and suck up this --- WHAT? What WAS that? I think. I'm not sure, but I think. No, I fear. That it was a baby lizard. The little clear ones. It happened so fast, my head is spinning. I snapped the vacuum off, but i'm afraid to look in the plastic dirt-holding-thingy. I'm afraid because I don't know what I will see. Will I see a live lizard suffocating in cat fur and litter? Or will I see a dying lizard, mangled and suffering from being sucked through a 4-foot hose and through a HEPA filter? Suffering that I caused?? Or. What if the lizard is LODGED in the HEPA filter. I just cannot deal with it. I can't. And dammit, I drank wine last night, so i'm not doing it again tonight.

There are only two semi-acceptable outcomes.
1) it was merely a dried-out lizard carcass, the dusty bones of a lizard long gone, dragged out from its final resting place by a bored kitty.
2) it was just a string.

Maybe I'll deal with it tomorrow. If I have the strength. Keep me in your thoughts.
I LIKE lizards. I have fond lizard memories from my childhood. Stories that I just might share, should I recover from my grief in a timely manner.


Bennifer II

So I took a break from madly working to sneak a peak at, to catch up on relevant world news. As the page popped up, I was instantly drawn to the story on Ben Affleck and Jennifer Garner's engagement ( Who really cares, right? I mean, it's obvious Ben has been dying to get married for several years now, good for him. But I do find it highly amusing that the Google Adsense Links associated with the article include nothing but ads for J. Lo products . And to make it even more humiliating for Jennifer II, the "Your Email Alerts" checkbox has as its two options Ben Affleck and Jennifer Lopez. Not Jennifer Garner. Sucks to be her.

And that is all I have time for at the moment, I just wanted to share.

Wednesday, April 20, 2005

Mixing it up

So today, after months of using iTunes, downloading music from the iTunes music store, and coveting various iPods, I had an epiphany. And I'm embarrassed it's taken me this long for the big "click." My epiphany encompasses all the POSSIBILITIES of mixing up special play lists and then burning them to CDs. I'm now a play-list fiend. I need to bring another chunk of my CDs to work this week and keep loading them on the iBook -- then I can make even MORE mixes :) Why has this never occurred to me? I can put just the songs I LIKE on ONE CD. It's nuts. Now I'm mixing it up for myself, my sister, and I'm sure before it's over everyone I know will have a mixed CD from d.j. l.y. :)

Yes, I am a dork.

Tuesday, April 19, 2005


Tonight as I was curled up on my couch watching bad t.v., something dawned on me. I was looking around my messy living room, thinking that it looked almost as bad as when I had my broken leg --- and then it hit me. Today. Two years ago Today I had my car accident. Two years ago, at this time, I believe I was still at a hospital in San Antonio.

I have time issues, as you probably know, and I pretty much freak out on a daily basis about the passage of it. Time, that is. But. This is ridiculous. TWO YEARS??? What have I been doing?? Why do I feel no further along in life?? Why do I feel like I've been wasting my alive-ness? Because after the accident, I was filled with this sense of having been spared for a reason. Something important must be in store for me. I was sure of it.

Then I think back to where I was, really, two years ago. I was in this same house, with substantially more debt than I have now. I had one less nephew. Neither Eli (Tam's son), Ava (Hope's daughter) or Madeline (Ann's daughter) had been born. Two of them weren't even a gleam in the eye of the universe yet. I had a job I absolutely DESPISED. A job I took out of desperation from being out of a job for a year. A job where every day I felt I was spinning my wheels, letting any sort of talent at anything just slide away, letting my brain turn to mush, being numb to block out the enormous boredom. However, it was at that job that I made several very good friends who I still have and intend on keeping around (Sarah and Matt ;).

So what have I been doing? Well, I suppose I have been paying off my debt; belly-watching; baby-watching; finding a new job that I love; feeling talented again; and spending time with my friends and family. And just in the past year, I reconnected with a couple of old and dear friends I'd fallen out of touch with, and I started this Blog, which has been an amazing creative outlet for me.

Sounds better when I put it that way, doesn't it? Well then why do I feel like it's not.....enough? If I were to die in the same car wreck tomorrow, what would I leave behind? Some killer headlines? A few Toshiba ads? No... but I would leave behind people, people I care about, people who have touched my life, people who I have affected by living.

So it's worth it, right?
Wait - don't answer that. I already know.

Monday, April 18, 2005

WormFest 2005

First, just an observation that I must credit to my massage therapist. What does it mean when in this advanced technological age of organ transplants, wireless computing and kitty cloning, the entire world is watching a CHIMNEY for the color of the SMOKE to send a message about the new Pope??????? I mean, how retarded is it that people are clicking on to see if the INTERNET has news of the smoke puff? Just curious.

Now, onto worms. Ahhh, spring. Season of the Texas green mushy silkworm (for lack of a more technical term). On Saturday, I accompanied Tam (who is about to POP I might add) and little Eli to Dripping Springs for some festival where J.M. was playing a set w/his garage band. It was an hour gig, and we didn't hang around much longer than that because, well, Tam is about to POP. On the way back, we caravanned (sp?) with JM, stopping at the infamous Nutty Brown Cafe for a leisurely lunch. The weather was perfect. It was not cold, not hot, but perfectly breezy and cool. We sat out back, under beautiful canopied trees, next to a safe, fenced play area for kids -- idyllic, I tell you.

Well as soon as Tam and I sat down at our table, we realized it was Covered. With. Worms. The gross, ultra-green, fragile kind that spurt brownish fluid if you even brush up against them -- Tam calls it "blood" but that just grosses me out TOO much so I prefer to call it brownish fluid. Anyway. They were everywhere. On the table. On the salt shaker. On the napkin. On the chairs. Under the table. Over the table, dangling on threads. I'm not a worm-a-phobe or anything, but EWWWWWW. While JM and Eli frolicked in the play area, Tam and I set about clearing our area of wormage. It was an arduous task, and required much maintenance. I have to say my appetite was pretty shot after that. I got a chicken salad sandwich, but couldn't help but wonder about the green specks in the mixture. I checked my tea before taking a sip. We had to stop and flick worms off our feet every now and then. I ate about half my sandwich and just couldn't deal anymore. But it was still a gorgeous day and we had a great time at WormFest 2005, Nutty Brown Cafe. After Tamara dropped me off at home I napped for a few hours and then did house stuff. The weekend was relaxing and it was good to be outdoors, despite our little wiggly friends.

Yesterday, I lounged around until my 3:30 massage. I was standing on my Guy's porch, waiting for him to answer the door, and I saw this big grey screw sticking out from his doorframe at a weird angle. Now Guy is blind, so this troubled me -- how would he know not to rip his arm open on that thing? I gazed at it for a few seconds, then reached over to feel it and ---------- IT WAS A WORM, PEOPLE. I uttered something along the lines of "Sweet Baby Jesus" just as he opened the door, and he asked me if I was on the phone.

Worms 'r' us. Like, totally.

Saturday, April 16, 2005

I am alive

Yes, it's true -- a whole week has gone by and I have not had one free moment to post anything!! And it's been an event-filled week, too. But -- I still don't have time to post anything, since i'm about to meet my dominoe-ready friend Tam for lunch (dominoe = baby-havin')! Anyway, I just wanted to post my life-status, which is, breathing but busy. I will update later this weekend with more. I am working on a hum-dinger, but it's taking a while to sort out. Stay tuned, and have a great Saturday :)

ciao for now...

Sunday, April 10, 2005

Climbing out of the ocean

Well here it is, the end of another lost weekend. This one was legitimately lost, though -- I have been recovering from an illness that has sucked up the last week of my life, that has made me stumble through the past 7 days as if in a dream. But then, but then, I woke up this morning and I could BREATHE THROUGH MY NOSE -- and this is HUGE, people! I was on the mend!! I still feel achy and tired, but the gunk is gone from my head and lungs. Yay! No more gunk!

So I really don't have a lot to say, since i've been sleeping and healing this weekend and watching a lot of television. I guess the highlight was when I stumbled upon a Nip/Tuck marathon late last night -- that was cool. Sort of surreal on Nyquil, but cool.

I'm going to bed now, even though I've been sleeping most of the day. I really want to wake up tomorrow morning refreshed and ready to face the week at work, seeing as the past week is a blur. I know I switched cubes on Friday, but the memory is faint. I hope I can find my new cube tomorrow.

Good night to all, and to all a g'night.

Friday, April 08, 2005


Ok, so I just wanted to check in this morning and say that I'm feeling MUCH better than yesterday, physically and mentally. Amazing how much being sick can affect your whole outlook. Last night I took an insane amount of Nyquil, blasted my nose passages open with Afrin (exp. 2/02, but hey, still worked) and slept like a baby, having epic dreams that combined high school, the Oscars (of which I was a nominee), my ex Chris, and "The Wizard of Oz" -- as a musical. In which I danced. I woke up to bright sunlight (hooray! the sun!) and a clear head for the first time in a week. Wheee!

Today is also "moving" day at work -- we're doing a major shuffle within our building, and it's utter chaos and noise -- but it's kind of a festive atmosphere and everyone seems pretty chipper. Anyway... I will write more later, but I just looked over my past few entries and thought "wow. dark."

So here, have some light.

Thursday, April 07, 2005

Feeling lost and very very old

I just finished looking at a co-worker's pictures from her two-week trip to Italy. She is 25, and the oldest of three sisters --all of them on this sister-trip. The pictures made me ache. I literally feel my heart aching. Because I so vividly remember my trip there with Tam, and I swear to you, we have THE EXACT SAME PICTURES. The pics of goofy, jet-lagged smiles and giant glasses of wine. The pics of random handome European men -- oh, so many men! Tam and I had this thing, on our magical trip, where every time we met someone (and for some reason, they were all men), we made sure to snap a photo. Just so we wouldn't forget one tiny bit of attention, one bit of fun we had. The photos of skinny sidewalks between tall, ancient buildings, with a tuft of blue or grey sky peeking over the top. Pics from within museums, of impossibly vibrant, impossibly beautiful works of art. Seeing a new generation of young, single American girls set loose in Italy with a ton of fine Italian young men, well, it just took me back there as if it were yesterday. And it was so, so many yesterdays ago.

It's not so much Italy that I'm missing, but who I was on that trip. That hopeful, happy, brimming-with-joy person. Every possibility seemed within grasp. I had my whole future before me, anything was possible, and I swore up and down that I would live there someday. We made plans, Tam and I. We stayed up all night on many occasions talking and laughing and writing down plans in our travel journals. I had a plan to change jobs, make more money, get out of debt, then to move to Europe. Well I accomplished the first two, but got stuck somewhere before the last two. Tam made plans to somehow get back to Spain, and she did it -- within a few months of our return, she was back over there for a 3-month student program. She did it.

Oh, how full of hopes and dreams we were. We believed, with every fiber of our beings, that we could make our life be whatever we wanted it to be. I still want to believe this, but it is so hard, gets harder with each passing year. I have gotten tangled up in "real life", in working, mortgages, bills, love, so many things, but I never got around to making that particular dream come true. Whenever I get unhappy or restless, I daydream of selling everything and moving abroad. I was in that place when I landed my current job last summer, but I've been happy enough since then to sweep plans of leaving under the carpet again.

So many things have changed since that trip. Everything around me has changed, everyONE around me. And oh, I have changed too, but not in a positive way, I don't think. I so want to recapture that feeling of belief, of hope. I looked at Esa's pictures and ache with the memories, those young feelings coursing through my old veins. That's how it feels. I remember Tam and I swearing to bring that amazing energy and that feeling with us back to Austin. To live here as presently and vividly as we lived on that vacation. And we really made a go at it.

So what happened? And is it too late? I'm no longer convinced that throwing caution to the wind and moving to Europe would fix anything at this point. Because it's not that my life is broken, it's just...stagnant. I want to feel young again. I want to feel like I have options. I don't want to feel trapped anymore. I don't know how to get there, but I really really want to be there.

I'm keeping a bookmark in my browser to Esa's pictures. I'm going to look at them whenever I start feeling stuck. I may be spending an awful lot of time online, but I NEED to recapture that feeling. I don't want to go back to Europe, I don't want to see Rocco again, until I can fully experience it and live in the moment again. Otherwise it would be a wasted trip.

I can't be numb in Europe. It's imperative that I get my act together before I return. It's perhaps the most important thing in the world that I get my act together, period.

I just have to.

Wednesday, April 06, 2005

Out of it

I feel like I'm clawing my way up from the bottom of a swimming pool. On the way to the surface, everything is turqouise and squiggly. It's like dreaming about underwater, in that I can breathe, albeit shallowly. I ache, especially my head. So I decided it was a GREAT time to blog -- Haha.

I am sick. I have been sickly for days, but today I am s.i.c.k. I worked from home today, but mostly slept. I do feel a little better, but not great. Although I did figure out what's wrong with me -- sinus infection. Lalala! At least I know what drugs to take now. It's weird in that sometimes I work more efficiently when I'm feverish. Even though I worked less hours, I think I got more done. Vedddy interesting.

I have been watching Law&Order for hours. Really. Hours. I'm actually kind of sick of L&O at this point. This has never happened. What does it mean???

It was a beautiful day today, it's really too bad I felt too shitty to do more than open all my windows. I did enjoy the breeze and the sunshine, but from my couch. The kitties frolicked in the backyard all afternoon, so they're all tired and stinky now. Did you know kitties sweat? They smell like little boys when they're outside for a few hours. It's a very distinct smell, you know. Most of you do, anyway...

Now that I've propped myself up at my computer, I've been doing some online shopping. But it's "pretend" shopping. I spend a lot of time picking colors, styles, even making a cyber-model of myself (that's for another blog) and trying on stuff, then I go to my shopping cart and delete everything. It gets the shopping itch under control, without going broke. If only I'd mastered this game right after I got divorced, I would be rolling in money now -- instead of tiny, useless sundresses I can't yet let go to Goodwill. sigh.

I wish I had something deep and meaningful to say tonight, but I do not. I just felt like rambling, so here it is. I am going to bed soon and hope to wake up clear-headed, medicated, and fully functioning again tomorrow. Cross your fingers for me...


Sunday, April 03, 2005

Hissing with a wide spray of venom

Poisonous venom, actually. That is me right now. A friend of mine mentioned that my ex-husband had updated his website with another writing atrocity. This one was about his bigoted view on "fat people". This is a HUGE trigger for me, and I'm sure it's part of my problem now with the whole weight thing. I lived with this man, I shared a bed with him, I spent time with him -- and he is SUCH a monumental, small-minded asshole I can't even stand it that I gave him the time of day, much less MARRIED him.

I will not subject anyone to his site because it would give him such pleasure to know it pisses me off and more, that it pisses me off enough to send people there to see for themselves. I will just say that he wrote a story that he probably finds very humorous, about his encounter with an obese woman. He probably thinks he's a fucking creative genius, actually. He probably called his short list of "friends" to brag and to direct them to the site, to witness his genius for themselves. I. Hate. Him.

The long and short of it, as documented in his "story", is that he is disgusted with overweight people. More like repulsed, really. He sees anyone who is overweight as lazy, stupid, and as below status of a "normal" human being. He truly thinks he is superior to someone who is overweight. He is not shy about voicing his opinion. I heard it a lot during our marriage. Gosh, I think I gained maybe 10 pounds after we got married? Making me perhaps 130 pounds?? And he would say regularly, "Just don't get any fatter, okay?" He would monitor what I ate. When he got back from a hunting trip with the guys he would rummage through our GARBAGE looking for evidence that I was a fatass who secretly ate dozens of donuts behind his back. He sincerely thought I was on my way to obesity, and wanted to stop it. And he sold me on this, hook line and sinker. I hated myself. I would look at my imperfect body in the mirror and pinch and prod places where women are actually supposed to have fat. I was disgusted with myself. I felt unworthy of love, from anyone. I felt invisible for many years. Literally. I felt no one would/could notice me because I was so gross. At 130 pounds. This eventually spiraled out of control and I gained 30-35 more pounds over the course of our marriage -- still not "obese" by any means -- but I think now I did it to repel him. To keep him away from me. But once I was free of him, I lost 5-10 lbs a week, steadily, til I was my college weight again. Below my college weight. Skinny enough that people were worried about me. But me? I felt GREAT. I had a new boyfriend who appreciated every inch of me -- and he did do wonders for my self esteem, in the long run. But at the time, it only went to reinforce the message my ex had hammered into my brain for years. I was only pretty, sexy, worthy of having attention, because I was finally thin again. Oh, how I revelled in my thinness. I racked up great mounds of debt buying every cute item of clothing that caught my eye -- I was making up for the last 4 years when I hated buying clothes (in like an 8 or 10 -- oooh, how horrible was that?). Now I was buying 2s and 4s, and loving it.

Of course there were other issues, including the huge one, depression, but the basic facts were there: I hated myself when "fat", loved myself when "skinny". I wouldn't listen to anyone. I became bony, but I didn't care. I loved to lie on my side and feel my hip bones jutting out. I loved lying on my back and feeling my concave tummy. All of that seems so surreal to me now, as I'm heavier than I've ever been and believe me, NOTHING is concave. What is this all about? What's the deal? How did this happen?

Maybe, just maybe, when I became unhappy again, when my perfect magic little lollipop post-divorce bubble began to collapse and become real life, somewhere in there I freaked out and started eating again. For comfort. For a brief high. Food was a fix. I also felt invincible, since I'd been thin for a couple of years now and "could eat anything" -- yeah, that only worked because I ate, essentially, nothing. But I was eating again now and the weight came on very quickly, like it was anxious to re-inhabit my body, like it had missed my belly, my hips, my thighs. And gosh, things fell apart. With my boyfriend. With my finances. Now somewhere in there I did score a great job I loved, but that is really all I had for a long time. My work. Is that still all I have?? Am I destined to be one of those career-oriented women who never has a family or falls in love? Am I so heady in my independence that I won't allow myself to open up just a teeny tiny bit? Or is it more mentally sinister; Is it that I feel I am simply sub-par at this weight and no one could possibly want to be with me. I cannot attract anyone because I am not attractive, plain and simple.

And here's the final straw that is crippling the camel, that Thing of Which We Do Not Speak. That, my friends, that is the hold that CJ has on me. The only hold he's ever had, if you get right down to it. We have nothing in common but a few random things that would not sustain a "real" relationship. He makes me laugh, but hell, I make myself laugh. He is beautiful. That does have a lot to do with it, but not in and of itself. The thing here is that he is beautiful AND he likes my body just the way it is. He has never had any kind of issue with my weight, he has always been attracted to me no matter what I've weighed. THAT is the hook. That is why I keep him around like crack, for another kind of "fix". When we spend time together, my self esteem will get a temporary boost and I won't feel so bad about myself for a few days, even a week. But then it will wear off again. And yes, I know this is messed up. I know.

The most messed up thing about it is that I am getting possibly my only ego boost in years from a guy I do not love, who does not love me, with whom I have never had a "real" conversation with, someone who really doesn't know me at all even after almost 5 years. This is the person my self-esteem depends on right now. Because in my mind, my physical appearance is so tied up with my overall worth that I can't give any thought to my other qualities until I am beautiful again. And I can only be beautiful if I'm THIN. It is a big circular mess. A mess I can identify, understand, talk about, but not seem to clean up.

I did not intend for this entry to go as far as it has. But I am not going to delete or edit it, I am leaving it because that is the way it came out of me. I am putting it out there as part of my process of self discovery, and I am only sharing it with people I trust and care about. People with whom I feel safe. I know a lot of you will have things to say and while I appreciate your caring, I am not looking for advice on this topic -- I'm just trying to figure it out, and I'm sharing the process with you.

So for now, what happens in the blog, stays in the blog -- deal? ;) I may totally change my mind tomorrow and call everyone to check in, but for now I'm done with this topic.

And that is about all I can handle on this Sunday night. I don't know about you, but I personally feel a whole lot better than I did about an hour ago when I started writing. So goodnight.