30,000 Foot View

Written on October 26 2017 somewhere over the Appalachian Mountains

I just finished reading Turtles All the Way Down by John Green… and now I’m sitting here on an airplane typing this post on a crappy little note app on my phone because I have too many thoughts and inspirations clambering to get out to hold them all in until I can get to my computer or the internet. If there’s one thing I’ve learned – when something wants to be written you write it. You don’t question its form or its function or its timing or anything else about it – you write what wants to be written. They may not be your best writings, but they are often your truest.

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There is undeniable truth to the fact that our thoughts are not actions, they’re just thoughts. We control them, they don’t control us. They are not reality.

It is also just as true that our thoughts are as much reality, as much what we are composed of as beings as our physical bodies are composed of organs composed of cells composed atoms.

And our thoughts are a bird, not a train. They do not run on set tracks, forever following the path on which they first set with no chance of change in course. They are blue birds and black birds and sparrows and falcons. They dart and weave. They soar and glide. Some stay close to Earth and others spiral in circles far above solid ground. They don’t move continually – some of the time they alight on gnarled ancient oak trees and sharp peaked mountains and crisp white picket fences; still, but ever watchful and poised to launch up and out at any moment.

Most of the time my thoughts are a murder of crows – black and loud and wily and cruel – perched on twisty old branches casting dark shadows over the fields of my mind. They cry in rough and persistent voices, scaring away all the other birds. They squawk about all the mistakes I have made, about all of my failures, about the failure OF me. They caw and caw, and while I often refuse to listen to them, I cannot not hear them.

But just when I think my mind will finally be stripped clean of every seed of hope, I find my scarecrow. I stuff my human outline full of accomplishment and dignity and simple happinesses. The crows flee, and the bluebirds can come back to roost.

There are no crows to scare them away; they bask together in the sun while the flowers begin to regrow in the furrows alongside them. They fly in soft and sweeping arcs, and from time to time they set down upon the garden gate to preen, so proud of their beautiful feathers shining for the world to see. They sing – bright and joyful and unafraid of who might hear them; after all, who isn’t delighted by the sound of sweet birdsong?

But scarecrows aren’t built to last forever. The docile field mice come and take a few straws; they are not malicious but are too in need of warmth to line their own nests with. And I don’t begrudge them that – what are a few strands anyway? Then the rain comes and soaks deep in, the heavy damp collapsing everything into a concave version of it’s former self. And I don’t begrudge it – rain makes the flowers grow. And then the wind begins – warm and smelling deliciously of apples and leaves, swirling a few straws away here and there in a whirligig against the sky. And I don’t begrudge it – their free-hearted dance on the wind makes me want to dance too. But then the wind blows harder, sweeping away all the easy to get to outer edges of my defense. And then harder, pulling bits and pieces away, away, until the center cannot hold, and then there is nothing left of my once solid and real scarecrow but chafe on the wind.

So the crows return. The bluebirds go back to huddling together deep in the cavity of their tree, silent. The flowers are picked and pecked until only brown earth is left.

And the cawing…. The cawing echos on and on and on.

Assassination Part Deux

They are freaking at it again.

The Assassins are back. Now that I’ve been lulled into a false sense of security by thinking that their attempts have been thwarted and they’ve given up and gone away – they are back.

But they’ve gotten smarter. They realized that I am now leery of all human beings and motor vehicles and therefore if they were to have any chance of succeeding at their evil task that they were going to have to try something completely different. Something so unexpected that I would never ever ever see it coming….

 

 

That’s right folks. Killer. Freaking. Bunnies.

Picture it: there I was, minding my own business, briskly walking to the conference through the lovely Arizona morning. Then he struck.

The murderous little bastard came flying out of a bush literally 2 inches in front of my feet.

I lie in wait!

I managed to live through the HEART ATTACK of the ninja ambush, but he was prepared for that eventually and had a backup plan.

 

Physics to be more precise.

In my effort to not crush said “Surprise, a rabbit!” I tried stopping dead in my tracks. TRIED is the key word here. INSTEAD of stopping, my momentum sent me flying with great force into the sidewalk. In a skirt that ended above the knee and therefore offered not even the illusion of protection.

The result?

I do live to see another day (guess that was obvious since I’m typing this… Although I guess it could have been a sparkly-vampire rabbit and I could now be UNDEAD and writing this…. But I’m not. Not that I’m telling anyway.)

[Graphic content below – you have been warned]

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

And this is AFTER cleaning up all the blood.

I’m going find that little asshole and have Support Fox Betty eat him.

 

Brain Games

This is the Avatar of who I wish my Brain was:

Betty Avatar – look how happy and carefree and benevolent she looks!

 

But sadly I have to come to terms with the facts.

If my brain were a person, it would look like this:

And have the personality of Season Three Big Bang Theory Wil Wheaton.

Smile If It Kills You

I been in low spirits for a few days (cuz my brain decided this week that it gave ZERO FOXES about what meds I was taking, no one was going tell it to tell me I could sleep.)


So I decided to try and force a little positivity into myself, whether I like it or not.

So this week: Favorites

More specifically, favorite guilty pleasures.

Massages.

Seriously, how does anyone not like these??? My toes curl just thinking about it. Hot rocks… Yummy smelling oil… Fooooooot rubs…

 

Starbucks.

I always feel kinda guilty about spending $4-$5 on a cup of coffee, or other assorted beverages. I mean, I could get a whole bag of coffee, good stuff, for only twice that amount. But that coffee wouldn’t come with flavored syrup. Or drizzle. Or a banana.

Putting a whole little butter packet on just half a roll. Or half a half a roll…

Seriously, what are dinner rolls even for except as a means of transferring large quantities of butter into your gaping maw?

 

People Magazine.

I know, I know. It’s total crap. But I love it. I only allow myself to indulge when I travel. Airport bookstore = smut ‘literature’.

Scheduling a mental health day off of work.

I mean, it’s terribly selfish, right? To take a day off for no other reason than to have me time. But I LOVE going to a cafe with a book or coloring stuff and spending the whole day relishing in it.

 

Pets.

Lots and lots of pets.

Tikka
Duncan
Oliver
Imee
Corvus
Alton
Tybalt

 

There’s a Hole in the Bucket

I haven’t slept well, despite the best intentions of pharmecutical  intervention, in almost a week.

So I’m really exhausted. But does this mean I can go to sleep more easily?

As. If.

Of course not – it actually makes it HARDER to go to sleep. I start to proceed towards that desired and Blissful end, only to be interrupted by thoughts of laying there and not being able to sleep, or falling asleep only to wake up just a short while after and not be able to fall back asleep… So I want to sleep but I can’t sleep because I’m afraid I won’t be able to sleep.

So instead of being able to even TRY falling asleep, I’ve worked myself into an inability to even stop pacing my living room.

WTF, Brain? Why are you SUCH an asshole?

#WorldMentalHealthDay #Ineedsomesleep

MRFR Snakes on an MRFR… House?

So this happened.

Huh. Don’t remember decorating the laundry room with that

Then this…

Wasup? Nice house ya got here

 

The next day – this.

<Alton’s stunt kitty stand-in> (‘cuz last thing we were thinking of in this moment was taking a picture)

Several days later…

… or at least this is what it looked like in Tybalt’s mind…

 

…… At least we have no mice?

Blonde or French Roast?

I was struggling between two potential topics for this next post:

A) “Favorites” – since the last entry was about things that annoy me I thought about switching it up to something more positive.

B) “My GREATEST Fear” –  a topic which is a bit dark and kind of a downer.

But I mean really, this is ME we’re talking about. Let’s be honest – if I ever choose fluffy over depressing you know I’ve been body snatched by the pod people. Or faeries. Or Q. (Edit: also, (B) has become extra pertinent since I first started drafting this post a couple of days ago, so (B) it is).

Particularly in light of the tragic events unfolding lately, one after another like a deranged domino-deathtrap designed by the effing Hellraiser, I want to talk about what scares me MOST: Having my husband die before I do.

I’m sorry, it’s just not okay. We’ve been together for 21 years at this point and I refuse to accept the idea that I would be stuck trying to figure out how to live in the world as an adult without him. Nope. He has been repeatedly told, and made to swear, that I get to die first. That’s the deal, dammit. No excuses…

I think most people have some form of this fear, whether they would call it their “worst” or not. But as a person with anxiety…. I look around at the trash can fire that is our world today and I am gripped by sheer and utter terror that as soon as I let him out of my sight, something terrible is going to happen. I am plagued by images popping into my brain at random but regular intervals almost everyday…

…of a police officer showing up at my door to say he’s gone

…or of checking Facebook only to find the latest “Breaking News” is of some horrible attack happening wherever he is

…or of him going for a routine doctor’s appointment only to find out he has some terminal illness

… or waking up one morning to discover he’s died in bed next to me during the night

And you might say that while these are somewhat rational fears, that the likelihood of any of them actually happening is minimal. But tell that to the family of Paul Walker or the other 40,000 people that died in car crashes in 2016 alone. Or people in Vegas or Charlottesville or Boston or London or Manchester or countless others. Tell that to my best friend who lost her 39 year old husband to cancer. Tell that to the families of Jonathan Crombie or John Ritter.

I try not to let these (or any of my fears for that matter), paralyze me. In the end – there is nothing you can do about any of them. I mean, I guess you could become a shut in to eliminate the whole car accident and mass shooting/bombing scenario, but you still have house fires and deadly breaking-and-enterings and natural disasters (oh my), so it’s not like being in your house guarantees your safety. And in terms of illness, especially sudden and unexpected health issues, you have even less control over that…  So what can you do? You could stop living while you’re still alive for fear of dying, but what’s the sense in that?

So I will keep traveling the world, and going to concerts, and getting in my car each day. I will try to live my live without thinking about what could happen to me.

But my husband? He’s going into a hermetically sealed bubble effective immediately.

No. Into the bubble with you. No arguments.