?

2015-Jul-13, Monday 01:46 pm
thisisdesire: GoddessTara (Default)
Dear Straight Cis Dudes,

Fuck your entitlement.
I do not owe you smiles
pleasantries
or explanations
You are not entitled to my time
I do not owe you second chances
excuses or
the benefit of the doubt

Dear Straight Cis Men
I do not owe you respect by virtue of
your cock
nor do I need said cock to make my sex "mature"
or "legitimate"
Please don't touch
me
don't tell me
to calm down
don't ask why I'm so
angry
don't ask why i can't
just
be nice to you
don't ask me to wait a couple more hours
for you to be ready

dear straight cis men
don't tell me
that i am intimidating while
backing away and
expect me to stick around
I do not owe you comfort
softness
or reassurance
don't tell me that
you are uncomfortable with the fact
that I'm smarter than you
these are not compliments and will not
endear you to me

dear straight white men
do not presume that you
are in any position to tell me
what is or is not indicative of
misogyny, sexism, or patriarchal grossness
because, honestly
how would you know
thisisdesire: GoddessTara (Default)
Queer marriage became legal in all 50 states yesterday. So, of course, the best way to celebrate is by bedding a straight married man, which I wound up not doing, but came dangerously close. He had an attack of conscience at the last minute (which I suspect was brought on by the fact that I refused to blow him in Krisna's driveway) and opted to simply drive me home.

He spent several minutes apologizing to me and telling me how incredibly mentally healthy I am because I didn't get pissed that we weren't going to have sex. I tried explaining that I had no right. We were strangers and I was trespassing. He owed me absolutely nothing. I told him that I shouldn't get kudos for not being an entitled asshole and he insisted that many people don't see it that way. At that point, we had known each other maybe three hours.

He had spent the bulk of the evening attempting to be charming (which I deflected) and laying the groundwork for transparent possibilities (which I called out and laughed at). He probably thought that I was blatantly rejecting and shaming him, but truthfully I just wanted him to understand that if I took him to bed it would not be because he somehow convinced me that I was special and managed to defy unspeakable odds in order to separate me from my panties (which I wasn't even wearing), but because it suited me to do so.

He told me that I was beautiful, that my eyes were riveting, and that when I touched him...honestly, after all the whiskey I don't clearly remember exactly what he said about his physical response to my hands on him, but I know that it was meant to be a compliment. I did not believe him. It's not that I doubt the general truth of any of those statements, I doubted his sincerity.

I am effected by these events in ways that I am not able to articulate. Much more important and equally trivial things went down. I kissed Krisna multiple times and she acknowledged that it had been building for years. An adorable gay man asked if he could perform our wedding and I said yes, of course. He seemed so excited about it. I didn't have the heart to tell him that we weren't even dating.

Also, I'm pretty sure I sang karaoke with Katie.

Buttons

2015-Jun-22, Monday 08:20 pm
thisisdesire: GoddessTara (Default)
When I say that you really suck at texting,
what I mean
is that you really suck at texting

I think it's because your hands are so big
and your fingers so long
that it makes pressing those
tiny buttons
more than a little
difficult

I remember the way
those same hands
felt inside me
You seemed to have
similar problems
ineptly fumbling
alternately hitting and missing
all of the places
that ached and begged to be pressed

At the time I thought
you were just a selfish lover
who couldn't be bothered to
properly learn my body

but in hindsight
I think you were just uncertain
too proud to ask for help
and trying like hell
to get your message across
the only way you knew how

All Fade To One

2015-Jun-22, Monday 01:39 pm
thisisdesire: GoddessTara (Default)
It has to start with every individual choice. This desire to do more, to be more, and to continue to move toward the things that scare me rather than hide from them. I am overwhelmed by all of the things that I want to create, shape, and take part in.

So, I saw this meme on Facebook. It said:

"It's easy to take off all your clothes and have sex. People do it all the time. But opening up your soul to someone, letting them into your spirit, thoughts, fears, future, hopes, dreams...Now that's being naked,"

While I can appreciate what the author was trying to say, I emphatically disagree. It can often take a tremendous amount of courage to be physically naked with someone, for any number of reasons. Allowing ourselves to be seen can be a frightening thing and in some cases can even be life threatening.

Oh, sure, for those of us who are capable of separating sex and emotional attachment, it can certainly seem effortless. However, even under the best of circumstances we all have those moments where there's a little too much light or a little too much space between ourselves and our lover/partner/one-night-good-time-bed-mate, and we end up feeling so much more exposed than we were prepared for when things began to heat up and move in this deliciously terrifying direction.

That's what it is for me, that moment when I am naked and staring into the eyes of my chosen, knowing that he/she/they see me. That moment where there is no possible way to hide because I am already baring all of my physical self, and while it may not be the same as baring my soul, I am still opening up. I am letting them into my space and trusting them not to laugh in my face and to stop whatever the fuck they are doing at the slightest indication that I might not be okay with whatever it is that they want. Regardless of how attracted I might be to someone, I am prepared to remove myself the moment the situation becomes rife with unreasonable expectations or unexpected creepiness while crossing my fingers that this will prove unnecessary and I can allow myself to safely share an intimate moment.

All of this is going on while we are simply removing our clothes. Regardless of body type or external perceptions of how attractive we may or may not be, we live with the fear of being judged and found wanting. We mask it with bravado and the illusions of arrogance and narcissism, or we shut it all off completely and fuck for no other reason but to feel something , anything, but the vast emptiness of a solitary existence.

This is not inherently bad. I have spent large chunks of time attempting to connect through physical contact or emotionally intimacy, and rarely combining the two. People come together (if they're lucky, and yes, pun intended) for all sorts of reasons, but ultimately, I seek to cultivate a receptive state of being that allows me to be vulnerable with another person. Partly so that they can feel safe in doing the same, but mostly because I fucking need it myself. I need to be known, to be bare bare bones. I need to have the opportunity to offer my throat and trust that it won't be ripped out. This is not just an emotional need. It is physical, visceral, and not for the weak or faint of heart.

Offerring

2015-Jun-18, Thursday 07:42 pm
thisisdesire: GoddessTara (Default)
I am backsliding. I have not exercised in at least three days. My body hurts and all I want to do is sleep and NOT brush my teeth. I am resisting the urge to use every enormously fucked up thing about my unfortunate yet extremely privileged existence as an excuse to hide in a little blanket nest and tell the whole of the world to fuck off.

I want to cry.
I want to scream.
I want to wail and moan and do desperate things.
I want to spit in the face of everyone who uses the word "normal" and doesn't seem to understand that they are actively othering all of the people who fall into the category of "not".
I want to find peace. small, medium, and large sized pieces of it.
I want to get this goddamn red dye off my face and find some fucking cream to powder foundation that blends properly.
I want to stop trying to educate and inform people who have no desire to learn and grow..
I want to hand out little cards that say something like "Whoops! Your privilege just fell out!" with links to prevent similar situations in the future.
I want to make more cards that use phrases like "douche bag", "dudebro" and "showing your ass".
I want to be functional and powerful and strong.
I want someone to bring me coffee in bed. Every. Goddamn. Day.

I want to feel like I am worthwhile. Like I have something to offer the world.
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------

It is now many hours later. I have done all of the laying around and sleeping. My back hurts. I have one goal for today and that is to force myself up out of this house for my walk this evening. I feel very much like I am stuck in some sort of dark tunnel. There is no light. I only know it's a tunnel because it's familiar in all of the horrible ways that tell me I have been here before and the only way out is through.

Pressing Matters

2015-Jun-09, Tuesday 01:55 pm
thisisdesire: Gorgon (Gorgon)
To Hell with personal growth and development. For the rest of my life I am going to watch and write about Dia Davina.

"A Boy Called Everything"
"Antlers For the Cheese"
"Nightlight"
"Sit Pretty"
"In Between"
"Skidmark Heart (9 Steps to a Satisfyingly Emo 90's Breakup)"

I am sure that I will add more to this list today. Also, I have liked their Facebook page and will be able to send them numerous messages begging for more wordgasms in the event that I run out of shit to watch. They could even video little mini-performances from the privacy and comfort of their own home. I wouldn't mind.

Now. On to other pressing matters.

Dear Silly Boy That I Spent Two Months Talking To,

I understand that breaking up with your teenage ten minute girlfriend must be incredibly difficult for a person with your complete lack of anything resembling insight, accountability, or self awareness. However, considering the fact that you completely stopped speaking to me because you were "so hurt" and "needed time" when I informed you that I would not be keeping myself pure and virtuous for you when:

a) You were in a monogamous relationship at the time and are so against the idea of polyamory that you wouldn't even listen to me explain what that means to me and therefor based all of your ideas and opinions on whatever you might have pulled from the stratosphere or out of your own uninformed ass.
b) You live several states away and have no plans to visit the state in which I reside.
c) We've not actually met in person.

I am less inclined to offer my shoulder and listen to you wax on about the unbearable unfairness of human beings in general and women in particular.

That being said, I WILL listen because I am not a heartless asshole, but I will NOT interrupt my Dia Davina poetry watching in order to do so. A girl has got to have her priorities. So, send me a message on kik elaborating on all of the brokenness of your manbaby heart and I will be sure to get back to you after this next poem...okay, well, maybe the one after that...You know what? I really just need to get through this playlist tonight, so if you could just get REALLY detailed with your message and maybe kick back for a while with some Beiber (this in no way means that I will ever stop hassling you about your steadfast devotion to this manufactured celebrity, but I know how much he makes everything right for you, so just do it) I promise I will get back to you after I've made it through the entire thing...and looked for other rarities...and slept for a few hours...and fortified myself with food and beverage to give me the strength to reply to your rather lengthy Ode to Everything Sucks.

Until then,

Jessie
thisisdesire: GoddessTara (Goddess Tara)
I am back again with more lovely talk of lovely poetry videos by the lovely Dia Davina.

The first is called "U-Haul".
The second is called "Cinnamon Hearts".
The third is called "Unicorn Love Child".

The last one is about best friends and the notion of platonic life partnership, which reminds me a lot of my former best friend. We almost got married once. We talked about it, but then we didn't actually do it because it got weird, but what never got weird was the way she always knew exactly what I was talking about any time I said anything, regardless of how random or obscure. I took that shit for granted and became complacent, forgetting for a while how completely non linear I can be because she GOT me. It's just not the same now. Other people may or may not laugh at my shenanigans, but regardless they lack the knowing smile and unconditional love and acceptance that always came with her smirk. I miss her so much.

I don't miss the way she would argue that the use of the word "retarded" really wasn't ablest or the way she would drink too much and show her ass, but insist that she absolutely did not have a problem with alcohol. I don't miss her complete lack of accountability or the way she called me abusive when I called her out on shitty behavior that had been going on for a really really REALLY long time.

It feels so strange to love and miss someone that I currently have no desire to share space or spend time with. We've all done it. It's not new or unusual. All I know to do is to continue to hold space for her inside of myself in the event that at some point things change and move in a more harmonious direction that brings us both back to each other. No conditions are permanent.

So far today, I have meditated, done half an hour of Yoga, and watched three delicious poetry videos. I am on this kick right now, where I feel like I need to watch everything I can by Dia Davina before I move on to someone else.

My body is feeling much better after the yoga. I have been struggling with getting that ball rolling, and it kinda hurt at various points throughout, but in that good way. That stretching out sore muscles and snap-crackle-popping things back into place sort of way. It was thirty minutes of slow movements and deep breathing and I was surprised by the thin layer of moisture coating my skin by the time I was finished.
thisisdesire: GoddessTara (Default)
The first poem I watched today was by Dia Davina and was called "The Polyamorous Mating Habits of the North American Red Squirrel". It was AMAZING.

The second one was by Dia Davina and it was called "Matching Socks".

The third one was by Dia Davina and it was called "Emergency Room".

I came so alive while I was watching and lost count of how many times I fell in love with the sound of their metaphors and double entandres. I expected to live the rest of my life deprived of the sense of whimsy and lusty satisfaction. It's been a long time since another human has tickled my brain in a way that shot sparks from the base of my spine and out through the top of my head, before cascading back down around me to form a protective shell of impervious creativite potential.

and it's not even about the person. Their smile. Their smirk. Their swagger. All of those things are nice, easy on the eyes, and sexy as hell, but I don't think it's the lips they keep licking, or the muscles in their face that repeatedly become taut with emotion or restraint and relaxed with "fuck it all, anyway". I don't think it's the vocal cords that boldly blunder through all of the things that it never occurred to me to wish that someone would say.

It's the fact that all of these things exist. They are happening somewhere right now and somewhere there is a crazy beautiful brain keeping all of them connected and housed in the same body of magical authenticity.

I am giddy with the anticipation of all the words I have yet to hear them speak. I am considering sending pink slips to all of my other partners, but I just remembered that many of them aren't actually aware of our involvement, so maybe I could just leave them out of our breakup and get back to the business of adoring another stranger from a distance and revelling in possibilities.

Fucking It Up

2015-Jun-06, Saturday 04:03 pm
thisisdesire: GoddessTara (Default)
So, one of the things that I am doing as part of my fancy journey of self rediscovery, is watch at least three performance poems everyday. Because it's fucking terrifying. Because I used to do it myself every week and the venue was my church. Because I used to write for at least two hours before work everyday while killing time at the coffee house down the street from my job, and at least two hours at night, while pounding Merlot in my partner's hallway (the bedrooms were full of junk) and he slept on a mattress in the living room. Writing was like breathing and poetry was the air. Having the ability to let all of my thoughts and feelings pour through my fingers, often at the exact moment I was realizing they existed, made me feel connected to something so much bigger than myself and kept me from feeling isolated, empty, and alone.

A lot of things have changed since then. I fell out with a couple of key members of my poetry community and went on to have a child with a married man. While I was pregnant with my daughter, I became convinced that if people knew what I was doing they would abandon me, so I saved them the trouble and isolated myself. My writing began to suffer. I would stare at a blank piece of paper indefinitely and the words just wouldn't come. This continued on past the birth of my daughter. The not writing. The avoiding of people who I found to be inspiring because I was certain they would judge me, and for once, I let it effect me to the point that it stopped me from living my life.

Over the course of the last 12 years I have deteriorated and have spent a not small portion of my time intentionally avoiding the writing process. I have no idea why. I have missed it, longed for it, ached for it, done all manner of completely unsatisfying things in place of it. I have had brief fits and starts where I would remember that at my core I am a writer and done some of my best work, but it still scares the shit out of me. The honesty, nakedness, and vulnerability that I demand from myself in my writing, coupled with the epiphanies, and varying degrees of evolving self awareness that come with unflinching self analysis (alright, so I flinch. whatever.)shake me to my foundation.

I recently watched a poem by Andrea Gibson on YouTube. By the time it was over I was so emotional that I couldn't stop shaking or crying long enough to form a complete coherent sentence in my head, much less say one out loud. I was scared, angry, envious, and grief-stricken all at the same time, and at the same time I knew all of the reasons why I was having those feelings and why I had been avoiding this thing that I loved so much for so long, this thing that was a part of me, that I could no longer live or breathe without.

I was grieving for the loss of the girl who wrote everyday. That fierce girl who had so much potential, so many possibilities available to her because she was so incredibly strong and determined. I was envious of the woman (and anyone else who happened to be doing the same thing) who was this force of nature on screen with her words, her voice, her lips, arms, and jaw muscles and I realized that the only difference between she and I was that she was not letting her fear consume her and prevent her from living. Regardless of this understanding, I still envied her and part me of me hated her, which brings me to my next feeling.

I was angry, mostly at myself for being such a pathetic chickenshit, but I pointed it all at her. How dare she be so incredible! How dare she be so successful doing what I want to do, but can't (because I was not letting myself)! How dare she take up so much goddamn space rockin; that mic! Doesn't she know other people (me) need the room?!?! Somehow, I actually thought with people like Andrea Gibson, Lauren Zuniga, Shira Erlichman, etc in existence there was somehow no room for me to be my fabulous fancy self and do my thing.

I don't know where the fuck that idea came from. I never used to think that way and it's not like trying out for the drill team in high school: there are not a finite number of spaces on the team of Fierce and Amazing Poets. There is plenty of room for me and I am finally beginning to understand that all of my excuses are bullshit and the only thing holding me back is me.

So. I have a multifaceted plan for facing this scary scary Thing With No Name. I am going to watch at least 3 performance poems a day. If I need to cry, and sob, and shake, so be it, but it needs to happen everyday, without fail, until this gross and debilitating fear, anger, envy, and insecurity start to dissipate and I can watch and listen without feeling the need to go fetal every time.

The second part of the plan involves writing everyday. I want to set a minimum number of words or amount of time, but I don't seem to be able to do that right now. I guess I will just have to make it up as I go along. I even have a new friend who has generously agreed to hold my virtual hand while I am watching all of the poetry, in the very likely event that I become overwhelmingly emotional again. In some ways they facilitated this by showing me the goddamn poems that triggered my extreme emotional purging. Thanks a lot!

No. Really. Thank you. You are a lovely human and I am grateful.



So, today's poems are:

"Friend Zone" by Dylan Garity
"Dear Privilege" by Amaris Diaz (Fuck. Me. So good.)
and finally...drum roll please...
"Excuse Me, I Lost My Compass, Can I Borrow Yours by Shira Erlichman (I am so in love with this woman. Seriously, I may never watch anything else for the rest of my life, just this woman over and over and over. and in my head there's that same sick mantra "You will never be as good as her. You will never be able to be in the same room with someone so amazing and powerful without turning into a bowl of oatmeal, bland, and goopy, and tasteless. You shouldn't write. You shouldn't write. You should never go to another poetry reading ever again. Everyone will judge you and laugh at you, and another thing..."

At this point I've stopped listening. I have heard all this shit before. I have said it to myself so many times that I know it all by heart. I have mistaken this bullshit propaganda for truth for a very long time and am ready to start tearing some shit up.

I didn't cry while watching today. I came close. I felt the tightness in my chest and the sting behind my eyes and I flinched and recoiled a little, but I kept watching and listening.

and I'm not sorry.

Not Myself

2015-Mar-11, Wednesday 04:25 pm
thisisdesire: GoddessTara (Default)
I had to leave my volunteer job early today because I kept falling asleep at my desk while trying to type. Sleep at night like most humans? Of course not. Sleep any other time when I have shit to do? Absolutely!

What. The Actual. Fuck.

I'm angry as hell today. My positive body image exercises can suck it. I just want to be able to sleep for more than 2-4 hours at a goddamn time, have a fucking bra that actually fits, and dye my goddamn hair so that I can start to vaguely resemble the person I feel like inside myself.



I'm SO tired!!!!



and no amount of rest seems to make it better. I'm just going to have to find ways to cope and make arrangements to see a doctor. I am also going to have to not use this as an excuse to let myself off the hook.

I am whole, perfect, strong, and capable.
I am resilient, creative, and fabulous as fuck.
Regardless of how I may look or feel - I am NOT the essence of all things frumpy and boring and hopeless.
There will be days when I have energy and am able to think clearly.
There will be days when I can look in the mirror without flinching, cringing, or wanting to break it.
and I'm STILL not going to say this shit out loud where my kid can hear it.
and I STILL need some better shit to say to my lovely wonderful daughter when she tells me that she feels bad because she feels so overweight.
I STILL feel like I am failing her.



I wish I could have any one of the things that would be a comfort to me, but maybe it wouldn't matter, anyway. Today, I am a covetous thing, jealous of everything and everyone who has any sort of advantage over me with regard to functionality, physical appearance, or love. I don't like myself this way and need a distraction.

I gotta clean something.

God Bless Spock

2015-Mar-02, Monday 10:07 pm
thisisdesire: GoddessTara (Default)
I caught myself starring at the ground today while walking down the street and forced myself to straighten up and walk tall. I thought, if I couldn't manage to feel good about myself, at least I could fake it until the feel good part came back.

I looked in the mirror and acknowledged all the shitty things that typically happen inside me when I linger in front of a reflective surface. I smiled and thought nice things mostly for practice. I thought:

You're beautiful.
It's okay. You're okay.
You are more than this body and this skin, but there is nothing wrong with this body or this skin.

I thought:

God bless Spock and his nude pictures of big women.

I'm sure I thought other things, as well, but my poor little brain is just not having it today.

Yesterday the kiddo was feeling self conscious about her stomach, so I leaned over and told her stomach (in a very deep and melodramatic voice) that it was absolutely lovely and should never let anyone tell it different. Then I said something similar to my own belly, you know, so it wouldn't be weird...

I am still managing to avoid saying unkind things about my body, though I have been thinking a lot about my last post and am worried that I wasn't clear in my meaning. See, it's not that I am judging anyone for having unkind thoughts about themselves, or for verbalizing those thoughts. I am just becoming aware of how easy it can be for us to reinforce unrealistic expectations with ourselves, our children, our friends and loved ones, and nearly anyone else we encounter, and rather than feed into that, I would very much like to find kind and compassionate ways to counteract it. Even if that means that the kindest and most compassionate thing I can do is remain silent when I feel like ass.



That's pretty much all for tonight folks. I hope to have better things to say very soon.

Be

2015-Feb-25, Wednesday 09:59 pm
thisisdesire: GoddessTara (Default)
This day blows. To be fair, I've felt that way about most days for the last ever, but have somehow managed to turn many of them around here lately. The whole of today has not been hammered shit, but it has certainly had it's moments. Like now, when I am feeling very much like I am not enough and never will be as long as I continue to exist in a world that assigns value arbitrarily to those who are properly proportionate. Whatever the hell that means.
.
Today, I had the privilege of listening to an incredibly beautiful woman talk about how fat she was. This was certainly not the first time that's happened, but for the first time that I can remember I allowed myself to step back and watch my thoughts about it as they stomped through my brain. I got angry and uncomfortable. I thought - if she feels that way about herself, then I must be the world's most unattractive woman by comparison, and in that split second I blamed her for all of it. I blamed her for her beauty and her oblivion and held her responsible for all the wrongs of the world. SHE was the reason that I felt so horrible. Who gave HER the right to question her appearance? to find fault with herself? and to not only imagine it into existence (I mean, seriously, there was absolutely nothing wrong with this woman! What fun house mirror had she been using?) but to speak it out loud so that anyone else who hears will be given the gift of not measuring up?

Of course I had to laugh at how completely ridiculous I was being. I am not the only human who is allowed to feel inadequate and covet the unrealistic ideal. Everyone gets to play. We are all entitled to doubt, pick apart, and find fault with ourselves as often as we like and as loud as we wish. Exercising that right by no means makes her a terrible person. However, I realized something that had really never occurred to me before - that when I say horrible things about my appearance I am potentially infecting the air of anyone within earshot. I am telling them that regardless of whether or not THEY find me attractive or interesting, they had better think again, because that is clearly not the case. I am hopelessly flawed and their judgment is irrevocably fucked and if they can be so wrong about me then they probably haven't taken the time to properly consider how completely disgusting THEY are and they should really just go home, lock the door, get into some sweats, AND NEVER LEAVE THE HOUSE AGAIN!!!...

...okay, so, maybe I'm not so powerful that I can incite random bursts of agoraphobic badness in total strangers on the strength of my own self-loathing. However, I am absolutely powerful enough to encourage anyone who hears me body shame myself to do the same thing. Because they find me more attractive than they do themselves, and if I'm ugly and gross, then they are obviously worse, so they must be an absolute eyesore. Because down playing your beauty is a thing that keeps you humble (until you really start to believe it). Because movies and magazines and celebrities and t.v. Because we are all supposed to talk about these things because we're human. Because mob mentality. Because I don't know where to draw the line between my right to bitch about my body and your right to live free of my expectations. Because nothing tastes as good as skinny feels. Because because because because because.

Because. Bullshit. I deserve better. YOU deserve better. So, regardless of how I might feel about myself in this transitional period, I'm pretty sure I'm done saying horrible things about myself to anyone at all. Because I don't just want to SEE some better examples.

I want to BE one.
thisisdesire: GoddessTara (Default)
Today has been about empowerment and the accomplishment of small goals that will absolutely add up over time.

In the last two days I have stopped in front of the mirror several times in order to compliment myself ("Holy crap! I'm GORGEOUS!") or to blow myself a kiss. I'm being pretty silly about it right now, but it is definitely a step in the right direction. The Offspring (the kid, not the band) has noticed and finds the whole thing terrifically amusing.

We sat down and had a conversation about body image and things that we can do to cultivate one that is loving and kind. She has decided to follow my lead as far as saying something nice to herself in the mirror everyday and we came up with a way for her to deal with any unfortunate body shamers that she might encounter. She is going to keep a few slips of paper with kind things on them in her pocket and whenever someone is being a shit for no good reason, she will give them one and affirm that they are worthy and do not need to make others feel bad so that they can feel good. Yes, we are both aware that this method involves a certain amount of condescension, but it beats the Hell out of slinking off, yelling, or hitting, while reinforcing that the problem lies with the shamer, not the one who is being shamed. I'm not sure how often she will feel comfortable actually doing this, but I really like the idea.

She also wants to make a scrapbook and make time once a week to put lipstick kisses in it and right compliments to ourselves and each other. She wants to take pictures and put them in there as well. I am so down.

I have taken 3 pictures over the last three days. My current technological situation has some issues with picture posting, so I will get to that as soon as it becomes possible. In the meantime, I will continue to flirt shamelessly with both my mirror and camera with the hope that we can take this stunning relationship to new and exciting places.

Today, I love myself with minimal effort. It is my hope that the seeds that are planted in these moments will carry me through darker days.

Step 3

2015-Feb-22, Sunday 09:57 pm
thisisdesire: GoddessTara (Default)
We now return to our regularly scheduled programming already in progress.

Step 3-Living in your RUHCUS in community.

17. Using the answer from question 10 and questions 3 and 4, create action goals for your RUHCUS project. They should be concrete and based in behaviors and actions, things you will DO over the next 30 days. Whenever possible try stating your goals in a positive i.e. Rather than "I will not talk poorly about my belly," you would write "I will speak positively about my belly for the next 30 days"

1. I will sit with my daughter and make lists of the things that we like about our bodies and tape them to the mirror so that we can see them every day.
2. I will move toward situations that make or have made me feel uncomfortable or less than in order to face my fear and teach myself that this is not the case.
3. I will watch positive body image videos and spoken word with my wonderful offspring.
4. I will take at least one picture of myself everyday and post them with my blogs as often as I am able.
5. I will say only positive things about my body unless I am discussing thoughts I am working through throughout this process, especially when in the company of other people.
6. Whenever I happen past a mirror I will say something kind or loving or blow myself a kiss.
7. When I am given a compliment I will smile and say thank you, rather than countering with something disparaging or dismissing it outright.
8 I will speak out against any form of body shaming I encounter regardless of who it's directed at or why. I will be kind, firm, and direct.
9. Whenever I catch myself having negative thoughts about my body, I will interrupt the thought and replace it with something kind and loving.


18. List 3 methods you can use to share your RUHCUS with the larger community.

1. I will blog about my experiences with unflinching honesty at least 4 times a week.
2.
3.

I am leaving the last two blank as I am honestly unsure of how else to go about sharing this. I am absolutely open to suggestions. :)


19. How often will you share your RUHCUS here?

I am saying at least 4 times a week, at minimum. However, I intend to exceed that as often as possible. I believe that transparency is a vital part of this project as it promotes accountability and strengthens my personal connections and ties to my community.

My RUHCUS start date is:

I was so anxious to begin this process that I sort of jumped the gun. I'm pretty sure I was meant to have all of the answers to these things written out and the ceremony all planned out before I ever started the process of documenting and sharing. So, I suppose it actually started February 16th. However, in the interest of being thorough, I intend to carry on for 30 days from the completion of this post.

From here on out things will be a lot less formal. I expect good days and bad and honestly look forward to both.
thisisdesire: GoddessTara (Default)
The nice folks at West Wind Unitarian Universalist Church have agreed to let me use their building on Saturday, March 14th, from 1-5. This will be more than enough time. I would like to make it a potluck so that there will be plenty of food to be had while we are hanging out and working on the mirrors after the ceremonial portion. Yes, I said mirrors. I have decided that even though this RUHCUS is specifically about me, part of the point is to empower my daughter with the necessary tools with which to address these same issues in her own life. With that in mind I think we should decorate a mirror for her as well. She will be there, along with a couple of her friends, as I think it is important for young people to see this issue being addressed in a positive way. While this project is ABOUT me, it is not only FOR me, because as I become stronger and healthier I also become more able to serve in my community and interact with those I love in a kinder, more compassionate, and ever-more-intentional way.

PLEASE REFRAIN FROM WEARING PERFUME, SCENTED LOTIONS, OR ESSENTIAL OILS AS THERE WILL BE CHEMICALLY SENSITIVE PEOPLE THERE AND I WOULD HATE FOR THEM TO EXPERIENCE MASS AMOUNTS OF HORRIBLE PAIN AS A RESULT OF SUPPORTING ME! PLEASE AND THANK YOU! I WILL STOP YELLING NOW!

Now. I am meant to be listing people I would like to be present at this intentionally created event. The who and the why:

Monkey of Mine - My daughter and the absolute love of my life. I can't imagine a single major event without her presence and have no desire to.

Alex - For all of the reasons I am not yet able to mention in this somewhat open forum. I know you will be with me in spirit even if you are unable to be physically present.

Krisna - I think of you as one of my best friends and absolutely want to share this very big and important thing with you.

Maka and Veni - You are my family. There will always be a seat for you at any table I occupy.

Cora - You have opened your home to me and mine and in so doing have made it a sort of spring board and stepping stone for my continued growth, development, and recovery. I am eternally grateful.

Kirsten - Our near instant adoption of each other has enriched my life in so many ways. I want to share all of my things with you, be they extremely important,less important, or absolutely ridiculous.

Bettie Rage - You are a fantastic example of tenacity and growth. You move and inspire me on a regular basis. Being your friend is both an honour and a privilege.

Sara, Brenda, and Debbie - Your ongoing friendship, support, and encouragement are a joy and a comfort. I have shared a great deal of my pain with you and would now like the opportunity to share my experiences of growth and recovery as I move through my personal Hell and come out the other side.

Maya and Orianna - Though I doubt you are reading this personally, I hope that your parents make you aware of how completely fabulous you are in nearly every way. I am so happy that my daughter has had the opportunity to know you both and have fantastically silly and important experiences with you. May you continue to grow together and enrich each others lives.

Susan - You have given me the gift of your time, patience, and wisdom. You are appreciated.

Carol - Your kindness and interest in my overall existence reminds me that I am worthy of such things. Thank you.

Andrea - You suck because you're not coming. Ha! I'm totally kidding. I suppose your daughter's engagement party is a an acceptable excuse for missing this very important life changing event of mine. I look forward to sharing more joyful moments with you.

Rea - Though you may or may not be present, you honour me with your respect and admiration. May I endeavor to deserve it.

Leigh - The fact that you see something worthwhile in me makes me feel good about who I am because I know that you don't care for most people. It's nice to feel special. I'm rather fond of you.

Adrian - I love you more than flavored condoms and cartoon mice! You have had a profound effect on my life. Get a house already so we can mail ourselves to you and get back to the business of doing amazing things together!

Kevin - You are lovely and kindred. That is all.

Jasmine - We don't know each other well, but you have been nothing but kind to me and I think this sort of thing should be shared with as many people as possible. Thank you for your continued support.

Sarah - You are a seriously hardcore force of nature. Thank you for sharing your stories and for taking an interest in me.

Well, I meant to get into some rather serious shit in this post, but am now feeling very much like an Oscar winner who has prattled on for so very much longer than necessary. Meh. There is always tomorrow.

Please let me know if you will be able to attend! Thank you! Thank you! Thank you!

Over and out.

Unkind

2015-Feb-21, Saturday 11:17 am
thisisdesire: GoddessTara (Default)
Some days you wake up just knowing that it's gonna be good. You feel rested and fresh. Your skin does not have that burning dry feeling that you generally wake up to before applying the requisite 3-4 coats of St. Ives OMG-This-Shit-Is-For-Real Mega-Super Lotion for Severely Dry Skin. Your hair does what it's supposed to with minimal effort. Your clothes fit right, concealing and revealing exactly as they are meant to. You feel truly beautiful. The birds are singing and you aren't even bothered by the sun shining (because presumably you are like me and cannot fucking abide bright shiny days, but prefer that they be cloudy and overcast).

I'm sure you know where this is going.
Yeah. Today is not that day.

Clothes not working, breasts spilling out of ill-fitting-too-goddamn-small-bra, uterus in revolt, hair wild and unkempt and nothing to be done. At one point I stood in front of my mirror and stared at my body, half-naked from the waste down, and tried to reconcile myself with this image that I have been staring at for years, but still seems so foreign to me.

I feel no connection to this vehicle yet I feel like it owns me.

I wanted to close my eyes but forced myself to keep them open. I imagined seeing the same shape lovingly. I heard all the critical voices in my head screaming that there was too much of me. That the space that my thighs, ass, and belly occupy would prevent anyone from ever loving me again or even really wanting to know me. I screamed inwardly for the voices to stop. I lifted my belly (cause, yeah, I can do that) and willed myself to see it differently. I looked at my face, all twisted up in disgust and waited for the moment to end, but it kept on because I had not yet done what I needed to do.

I softened my gaze before finally allowing my eyes to close and stopped myself from snatching up my phone or calling out to the girl-child to have someone to complain to about my unfortunate lack of anything resembling attractiveness or self-esteem. I stopped myself and thought about how I don't want to infect anyone else with my shitty attitude and how it is no one else's job to be my antidote. Then I thought that the last thing my daughter needs is to hear me bitch more about my body image when I am trying to help her feel better about her own. I thought about the fact that it is okay to reach out, but I need to start actively practicing self-love and acceptance instead of running on automatic pilot to anyone and everyone who might provide me with a moments distraction.

I want to stop looking outside of myself for love and validation.

This is pretty basic stuff, territory that has been very well covered, but I'm still working it out. I am still piecing together my 30 day plan-o-action for Radical Unapologetic Healing. In the mean the mean time I intend to address each moment as it comes in the best way that I know how.

Today, my accomplishment is in the absence of action as I refuse to let my daughter hear me utter a single unkind word to or about myself.

Selfish

2015-Feb-19, Thursday 01:12 pm
thisisdesire: GoddessTara (Default)
I am having a rough day. I am telling myself that it's okay. I can still turn this day around and make it something positive. I really just want to go back to sleep or lay down and spend the whole day crying and sobbing, but I did that for a very long time and nothing ever got better.

My laptop died and I am having trouble being adaptable. I am worried that I may have lost a bunch of information for my college application and am trying not to catastrophize. Lots of shitty body image thoughts over the last two days and have really just been treading water with that. I haven't gotten much farther than telling myself "that's just bullshit". So, hear goes:

I am a good person.
I have value simply because I exist.
I do not have to be pretty or attractive or beautiful for anyone, but I can be all of these things if I wish.
I am strong.
I am capable.
I am smart.
I am kind, compassionate, and loving.
I am more than the sum of my shitty decisions. They do not define who I am. I have every single day to choose to do things differently.
I love myself. Just because. Because I deserve it. Not because of anything I have done or not done, but because I am a living thing with a soul and I deserve good things like everyone else.
My body shape does not define me.
Bodies come in all shapes and sizes and no one shape or size is any more or less beautiful. Just different. Some may be more or less pleasing to others, but this is not my concern. What other people think of me is none of my business and it does not effect who I am.
The roundness of my arms, thighs, hips, and belly is soft and lovely and not anything to be ashamed of.
I love myself. Myself I love. I myself love. I love myself.
Over and over and over.

I hope these things begin to feel more true over time.

The next few questions for my RUHCUS project deal with acceptance, honour, and release. They are as follows:

Acceptance is understanding that my shitty body image has served me in some way.

12. List three things you have gained from having a shitty body image.

While I understand the purpose of this exercise I am having a really difficult time figuring out what to put here...

1. I have gained an understanding about the sort of privilege that can go along with being thin or beautiful in ways that are well known and accepted by the majority and even particular sub groups.
There are a number of situations where I am treated differently or completely ignored and I realize that there have been times in my life when I have behaved this way with other people. No one deserves to feel like they are less than and I don't want to be that sort of person.

I am not coming up with any other way that this has served my. I will give it some more thought, but do not want to force it, so I am going to move on for the time being.


Honour allows us to realize that the thing in the box (my shitty body image) was born out of truth. It was something I developed because I needed it for survival.

List two ways having a shitty body image has served you.

1. It has humbled me.
2. It has kept my arrogance and narcissism in check and forced me to accept that other parts of me are just as important, if not more so, than my physical appearance.

List two ways having a shitty body image has protected you.

My therapist insists that it has protected me from certain types of assholes. However, I have managed to not only find, but seek out a number of assholes all by my onesie, so I think that's total crap. She also says that it can be a way of insulating yourself from the rest of the world and while this may be true, I do not feel like this protected me at all as being isolated contributed to extreme feelings of unworthiness and led to want of death.

The only other thing that I can think of to put here is that as having a shitty body image has kept me from participating in a number of situations where danger may or may not have been laying in wait. However, that is pretty slim. Having a shitty body image has not protected me from horrible people as horrible people are often even more interested in folks with self esteem issues as they are often easier to manipulate or control. So, since I don't particularly feel like I have been protected by having a shitty body image I can safely say that I have even more reason to let this shit go.


Release allows us to see that the thing in the box is not serving us anymore and take our power back.

List four things you would do if your shitty body image no longer had power.

1. I would be able to see myself as strong, capable, empowered and beautiful regardless of what my physical appearance may or may not be on any given day. I would understand that my physical representation does not touch the core of who I really am.
2. I would be able to take compliments and pictures and look into mirrors without cringing and verbally abusing my beautiful self.
3. Poetry and roller derby, baby.
4. This one is really hard to acknowledge and admit to, but the point is honesty and transparency, so here goes: I would stop allowing unworthy douchebags into my orbit because I would no longer believe that they are all I deserve. I would know with absolute certainty that I deserve better and would not settle.

I need to take a minute to let that sink in.

Okay.

So, I had to run around the house and do shit for a bit while I was dealing with the fact that I am mighty. I never really know how long those feelings will last at this juncture, so I have to take advantage of them while I can.

Now we are moving on to the actual ceremony planning bit of this little adventure. I am very much wanting to hear from folks regarding schedules and availability. I would like to do it on a Saturday and am thinking of using the Unitarian Church. There will essentially be two parts to this gathering: ceremonial (symbolic/visual, and tactile. For the ceremonial aspect I am pretty much going to crib off of the example on the worksheet because it just fits so very well.

In a bowl I will have written on separate slips of paper all the reasons I adopted the issue I am wanting healing from: what do I feel like it gave me? What historical pains are attached to it? In the presence of he group I will read aloud each sheet of paper. After each one i will say aloud how it is no longer serving me. I will then pass a basket around and each person in the ceremony will take one of the slips , rip it, while stating that they wish to release me from whatever is on the sheet. Ex:"today I release you from...words of shame that were spoken to you as a teenager. I replace it with a belief that you are whole, vibrant, and loved." Each person in the space will do this in their own words. At the end I will burn the ripped sheets of paper and toast to my journey of healing.

The tactile aspect is going to involve a group art project. We are going to decoupage a mirror and put the power of our positive energy to work making something beautiful to remind myself that I am beautiful every time I use it. We will be using whatever magazines, paper, and other materials we can collectively scrounge up. I am thinking of making this a potluck situation as it would be nice if we could all share some snacks and comfort drinks while honoring, celebrating and playing together.

Now I need to address one last thing. Parts of me are feeling pretty selfish about this part of it, like I am asking too much of my people by asking them to take time out of their lives to show up, support me, bring some food, and make some funky art that only I get to keep. There is part of me that doesn't feel worthy of so much time and attention being focused only on ME. and I think that is part of why I need to do it. To look those feelings in the face, acknowledge them, and counter it with something loving, kind, and compassionate. I need to acknowledge that *I* am just as worthy of those things as everyone else. I have invited all those I love and respect to take part in my self-destruction. Why can't I invite you to be a part of my recovery? I am in no way asking any of you to do the work for me, but I need to be SEEN and I need to be known for something other than my flaws. I would be willing to do this for any one of you. Truthfully, I think I would be willing to do this for a total stranger or someone that I haven't spoken with for years and may not even like. It's that important. So, thank you, again. I still feel selfish. I still feel like an attention whore. and I am still absolutely going to see this through.

The Day After

2015-Feb-16, Monday 08:51 pm
thisisdesire: GoddessTara (Default)
I woke up with an excess of fatigue today, which is pretty standard for me at this point, but I tried to blame it on all the self analysis of yesterday. I swear, by the time I was finished and had everything posted I was ready to eat my a horse and sleep for twelve hours and today I felt hung over for the first few hours of being awake. It wound up being a fairly productive day.

For the most part.

I caught myself intentionally avoiding mirrors and thinking unkind things at myself today while being out and about. It made me sad because I have not yet put together my plan of attack for how to counteract those horrible behavior patterns. Since I wasn't sure what to do, but I didn't want to just keep hating on myself, I tried to focus on something that made me feel good. It helped for a little while, but I am aware that this is not a long term solution. I think the important thing at this stage is to notice the negative thoughts and behaviors and interrupt them. As I move through this experience, I will come up with concrete positive substitutes, but this will have to work for now.

and it's okay. I'm okay.



In the car with my pretend mom when we left Target, the kiddo started talking about her belly, about how it's big and she doesn't like it. I died. and in my secret zombie form I told her she was beautiful. I reminded her that we are beginning to exercise and eat healthier and that in the mean time we need to find ways to be okay with our bodies the way they are now. It kinda fell flat because I didn't have any ideas on how to go about doing that.

We got dropped off at a friend's house and I asked her and she sent me a link ( http://www.facebook.com/l.php?u=http%3A%2F%2Feverydaylife.globalpost.com%2Factivities-building-positive-selfimages-teens-5260.html&h=2AQHrg-s5) so that gives me a place to start, although the article is pretty specific about how to address different things with different genders, which is total bullshit, and also is just rampant with unchecked privilege of the "buy them something to make them feel better" variety. I can still use some of the information as a place to start. I can also watch all the body positive spoken word with her and share the things I learn through this process as they come up.

What I can't do is go back in time and erase all of the times that she heard me say horrible things about myself. I can't go back and force myself out of bed and cook her healthy meals instead of microwave burritos and I can't change the fact that for years we really weren't doing much in the way of physical activity because we were both so used to accommodating my depression, anxiety, and agoraphobia. I accepted the reality of the world that I created, which was that I was too sick and too broken to be a functional human and take care of us in very basic and very important ways. I taught my daughter how to be kind to every living being, except herself. I really hope that I can find ways to teach her about all of the wonderful things that I fucked up or left out.

I want her to know that she matters.
that she is smart
that she is funny and fun to be around
that she is strong and creative and wonderful
I want her to know that she smells like graham crackers and sunshine and that that smell always makes me smile.
I want her to know that her belly is beautiful and her stretch marks do not diminish her value as a human being.
I want to be able to tell her exactly what to do when she starts to feel bad about herself, but I can't because I haven't gotten that far yet.

I want her to know that I love her and I want that feeling to be contagious.

So, tomorrow I get back to work researching more methods to combat deep-seeded self-loathing and replace it with radical unapologetic self-love. I hope she's paying attention. and I hope some of it rubs off.
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