Self Care

Fight Despair Together: What Does Life on Your Terms Look Like?

You see the well-trodden paths in your life. You learn ways to stop getting stuck there. You go, killer! The next question is, “Where do we go from here?”

We have to forge new paths, create new ways of relating to people around us. If we are doing our inner work well, this should be obvious to us. We recognize familiar situations and remember how we would have reacted in the past.

Take Responsibility for Your Reactions

Personal example, a weird thing I have is I hate waking up alone. Like, if I went to bed alone, okay. But in that half-awake haze of the Night Owl at 8am, I seek out the comfort of my beloved.

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Fight Despair Together: How Do I Know It’s Working?

When we are going inward and doing personal work, the most important thing is to stay on-task.

How Do I Choose Which Path to Take?

Stay focused on a simple goal, don’t be distracted by side paths that may pop up. If you are working on expressing yourself more clearly and you realize that you are experiencing social anxiety, it’s tempting to run off and treat the anxiety.

But why? Who’s to say the communication issue didn’t cause the anxiety? Or they could both have origins in a single, forgotten event from childhood.

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Fight Despair Together: Healing Through Self-Compassion

What is stopping you from working through your problems and becoming who you want to be?

Depression and anxiety are both subsumed anger over how we have been treated. 

Over and over, researchers have shown that those who suffer from such things are overwhelmingly victims of abuse as children. 

Of course you would be angry if those who were supposed to care for you instead treated you like crap. Or otherwise made you feel lesser. And there’s a good chance you don’t even realize it. Or the depths to which it shapes your experiences to this day.

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Summer Series: Fight Despair Together

Summer Series 2019 is all about finally moving forward.

Last year I did my Tripping the Fright Craptastic series, where I told you all about my struggle dealing with my parents. I was attempting to show some of the crap that comes with being in the middle of life while supporting either end.

This year’s Summer Series is about all of us.

Reality is sinking in for the 90s kids. The reality that we may never own a house. That the endless ascension toward a blissful, shining future full of robots is not going according to plan.

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Shaken, But Not Stirred

WARNING: Rant ahead!

I’m so frustrated lately with my job search! I keep applying for writing gigs, but I only apply to things that really seem like a good fit. And running into the same old problem of not really fitting in anywhere.

This last one was a blog ghostwriting service. They literally wanted me to do what I do here, for money. On whatever topic was provided. I let myself get excited when they responded positively because it seemed like a natural step.

So today when I read they were “going another direction” (I’ll go whatever direction you want, that’s the whole idea!) I was unprepared. And embarrassed at being so upset.

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Beware The Were-Bitch: PMS & You

I’m not sure how to write this post. I only just came to the idea that the sheer bald-faced panic I faced recently wasn’t cured by the extra sleep or the vitamins or my husband’s attention. It basically seemed to evaporate along with my menstrual period.

Fucking hell.

I have had this thought before, but my cramps are mild and I only bloat a little, I have always counted myself lucky that I don’t get a lot of the physical symptoms. So it never occurred to me that I might need to look out for extreme mental ones.

But last week, dear readers, things got dark for me. I kinda thought I was losing my mind or something. I seemed unable to communicate anything important to anyone and the whole world seemed to take on a dark pallor. (It didn’t help that it rained literally all week. Thanks, climate change!) But mostly I was just sickeningly tired. Head-pounding, stupidly tired.

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Adulting: Fighting The Don’t Wanna

They say having kids around keeps you young. Conversely, I actually find that having kids makes me feel older, but usually in a good way.

Growing Up Is Hard To Do

Into my 20s I was still waiting for the day I would grow into my life like a new pair of shoes. Extended adolescence is a thing, and everyone I knew seemed afflicted. My generation was going in many directions and none of them were toward stability.

Then I unexpectedly became a parent. Conscience demanded that I drag my hungover ass to the park every day, make real dinner and read baby books over and over. Sometimes Fake It Till You Make It is your only option.

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Mad Woman

For reasons lost to the meanderings of my mind, it recently dawned on me that my anxiety isn’t really anxiety at all.

I am filled with submerged rage. I didn’t ask to be born to a bunch of emotional idiots. I struggle daily with the effects of their bullshit. To some degree, I’m still angry for every pointlessly mean thing, for every clueless utterance.

Because I never found a way to express my anger. I have been afraid of it, afraid of losing control of it. I don’t want to hurt myself or anyone else.

So I tamp it down. I keep it contained as best I can but it rattles its cage and howls at night. It vibrates my nerves and keeps me agitated.

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This Could Be Your Lucky Day in Hell

“You can’t miss another day, okay sweetie? You only have four hours left.”

The sweet Southern lilt came from my case manager at the temp agency. I missed part or all of 3 out of 5 days last week, and I expected her to be annoyed. Instead she was sympathetic, telling me how her family had been sick over the weekend and that she wanted to check my time with me.

It’s nice to have a boss who doesn’t treat me like I’m trying to get away with something.

Because I really was up at 4am leaned over the toilet bowl. No alcohol was involved. My period hit me like a train and I just really feel awful.

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They Said I Could Be Anything, So I Became A Robot

This is just your faithful narrator checking in. It’s been a while since I’ve published anything and I’m frustrated because it’s not that I haven’t written anything or have run out of ideas. Far from it.

But I recently started a job that has me standing in an industrial environment all day. The stories I shared this Summer about my parents are both still ongoing. We have been struggling financially at home and I feel like I have been living in a pressure cooker for six months.

It makes me sad because, back in June, I hit a stride and the world seemed to burst with inspiration. Thoughts came together naturally. Writing was fun and I put a little money into promotion. I got over 550 hits that month. I made connections with some great people. I could see it growing, envision myself getting somewhere with this.

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Art Vs. Economics: Who Am I?

Watching films about great writers and artists always inspires me. Tonight’s offering was Joan Didion: The Center Will Not Hold. Available on Netflix, this documentary of the famous writer’s life is full of interesting details but dances quickly from one situation to the next without giving a lot of depth.

Joan Didion is someone I’m embarrassed to admit I was not more familiar with before now. She bore witness to some of the most interesting events of recent history. In the film she is a wizened crone reflecting on a full life.

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Readings: The Sociopath Next Door

Last time our Readings took us to some pretty deep places in the Freudian unconscious. This time we’re looking at behavior that is in front of our faces every day.

I’m not the first to write an article inspired by Dr. Martha Stout’s superb book The Sociopath Next Door. It is riveting and filled with educational details. Dr. Stout employs narrative to draw characters who illustrate points from the easily digestible lists the book is populated with.

After drawing her terms, we meet Skip and Doreen. Skip’s last name is probably Skakel. Doreen has ensconced herself as a doctor in a mental hospital with no real credentials. They both use the power of their position to abuse and intimidate people below them.

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Tripping The Fright Craptastic Pt. 5: Mommie’s Dearest Things

This is the final installment of my Summer Of Hell series. Thanks to everyone for reading, your support has meant my world to me these past few months.

Not sure why, but this one is the hardest. There's no heroics or heartwarming lessons. Just some cathartic shit I need to get off my chest.

Read on, if you dare. 

If life were a movie, this trip would have been one of those reunions where people get together under less-than-ideal circumstances but pull it together in the end. It’s a difficult experience but it bonds them in their shared adversity.

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