“What’s with all that sniffing?”

child at aquarium viewing polar bear swimming

I’m having a good 2019, so far.  (I’m already keeping track.)  Heh.  Ever since I leveled up in the game of life, I’m more apt to notice positivity.  It amuses me as I used to be one of those people who automatically scoffed at others saying, “think positive.”  As if thinking a certain way can vastly improve my quality of life.  Pshaw!  Cue the condescendingly tolerant reel that plays whenever I witness hippy-like behavior, courtesy of being raised in the upper midwest.

Either the community brain-washing didn’t take, or I’m a rebel.  I’m presently engaging in all sorts of hippy-like behavior.  I just got back from a mini-vacation in Denver.  Since M accompanied me, I was able to partake of the legal variety of weed while there.  (I decided I don’t need to use it very often, so mini-trips suffice over moving.)  I still feel like it’s having a positive effect on me.  Reverberations from reaching a state where I experienced no anxiety, I presume.

broken cookies

When I got home, my blood pressure meds were waiting in my mailbox.  I have to see my primary care doctor in the next three months, or I’ll run out again.  I suck at noticing symptoms until they bring me to my knees.  Now that I’ve taken a dose, I can already feel the difference.  It feels like someone just let me out from between the heavy mattresses that were crushing me on the sly.

I’m sensitive about my hypertension.  In my case, it seems my blood pressure and anxiety level increase in tandem.  The closer I get to freaking out, the higher my blood pressure rises.  I despise having it checked with the auto-cuff.  It usually starts a loop of ever-increasing numbers, until the medical person groks the pattern, and turns it off.  (I’m embarrassed by this quirk because I strongly suspect I caused it during an experiment I did years ago attempting to train myself to suppress all visual signs of stress/anxiety/depression.)

It backfired, I think.  I waiver between the benefits of masking to prevent stranger danger and the dangers of mistreatment due to not presenting stereotypically around poorly trained medical professionals.  I’ve apprehended a resolution to my difficulties in getting racism-free care at the Sioux Falls VA.  I’ve concluded my best option is to forgive the mistreatment in the past, and move forward without the baggage.  (It seems kind of duh, now, but it took me a while to figure it out.)  😂

bunny suit costume

It turns out; I’m allergic to baggage.  It slows me down, weighs me down, and worst of all hurts me.  (I’m also allergic to pain. 🤫)  My ability to reason when enduring pain is pathetic.  I could work on that, or I could focus on avoiding pain when it’s a choice.  I’m big on narrowing down the root, so I’m going with the latter option.  Fortunately, I don’t have any chronic pain conditions, and borderline-unsafe high pain tolerance (unless it’s above the neck.)  Most of my pain is a result of poor choices.  (Ouch.)(Shaddup, ego.) 🙃

I’m going to schedule an appointment with my primary care doctor at the VA.  When I believed this action impossible, it was due to being buried in painful baggage.  Now that I’ve engaged my Superpower of Forgiveness, I’ve freed myself and can imagine a fabulous 2019:  A year that includes preventative health care, lots of joy, and the Fleetwood Mac concert.  (Okay, the last two are redundant, but who’s counting?)  😂✌🏾💜

“Would it kill them to put out a pound cake?”

man shoveling snow

We got a little snow recently, along with temperatures dipping below freezing at night.  It snowed, then rained, and snowed again making it crusty and cold outside presently.  I’ll admit, I do enjoy stepping out onto my balcony to create the delightful crunching sound by stepping on it.  It reminds me of when I was a child bundled up to play in the snow.  Moon boots crunching, ski pants swishing, ice skates clunking together as I made my way to the rink a few blocks away.

I love winter when I can control my exposure to the cold.  As a kid, I’d remain outside until chilblains forced me indoors.  Then I’d bawl while warming up in front of a heat register.  It was merely part of the deal and never led to shortening my fun to prevent it.  As a soldier in Germany, I despised the cold.  I never got the gas heater in my bivouac tent to work correctly.  The one time I managed to start it, I nearly burned up the tent.  🤭

I’ve been watching Netflix often lately.  The new Ellen special, Relatable, was fun.  I’m still hooked on Black Mirror.  I haven’t watched the new special episode yet, though.  I’m watching from the beginning, in order.  I’m weird like that.  I finished my third viewing of Game of Thrones, seasons 1-7 on Blu-ray recently.  I find bits I missed each time.  I read Fire & Blood by George R. R. Martin not long ago.  The history of the Targaryans is fascinating.

viewfinder

I’ve been working my way through Haruki Murakami’s catalog of novels since then.  The last I read was Killing Commendatore.  He’s officially one of my favorite authors.  I also read Skyward by Brandon Sanderson, and Salvation by Peter F. Hamilton.  They too are favorite authors, and I read everything they publish.  Both novels were fabulous, of course.  I love how Peter F. Hamilton created people with more than one gender, and always includes multiple races in his futuristic books, (an essential factor in what I choose to read.)  I love space operas.

drum kit

My band covered a few Sheryl Crow songs in a recent performance.  Maybe Angels, and Sweet Rosalyn, both from her self titled album.  Even thinking about it now has me grinning.  It was an incredible experience.  We still don’t have an official band name.  We’ve been making one up before each show, (not that there have been many.)  I hope this practice continues since it’s wicked fun.  I secretly don’t care if we call the band Unicorn Poop, or whatever.  It’s the best reason to leave my apartment I can imagine.

Aside from the upcoming Fleetwood Mac concert, that is.  The closer the date, the more excited I become.  I lay in bed last night thinking about it while consciously tempering my expectations.  Shit happens, so I don’t want to set myself up by anticipating too profoundly.  No matter what happens, the band exists, and their songs are part of the soundtrack of my life.  I can celebrate this anytime.  The concert is icing on a delicious cake.  Yay.  ✌🏾💜

“Is he still mad at you for crashing his Thanksgiving party?”

love listening

I’m having a productive day.  My weekly chores are nearly complete, pending a laundry load in the dryer.  I finished reading, Becoming, by Michelle Obama recently.  Reading it was like spending time getting to know her.  She was candid, personable, and unapologetically human.  I love her and am grateful to know her on her terms.  It’s an ideal manner of connection, in my belief.  She’s instilled a deep sense of hope within me.

I’m presently devoted to four weekly podcasts.  (Gettin’ Grown, The Friend Zone, The Read, and Jade and XD.)   The people who create them are part of a tightknit group of friends, which adds to my listening pleasure.  I was listening to Jade and X.D.’s latest episode (with my headphones) while working a jigsaw puzzle last night.  At one point, I burst out laughing, startling Amelia Bedelia, Talulah, and M.  I noticed their reaction in my peripheral vision and turned to see their alarm.

Amelia Bedelia quickly exited the room, fleeing to her safe place atop her climbing tower.  Talulah barked once as if scolding me for making her jump.  M, who was playing a video game, played it off and asked me what was so funny.  All I could do was laugh even harder.  I paused the podcast and got up to attend to Amelia Bedelia, but couldn’t stop giggling.  I’m typically fairly silent, but it occurred to me these favorite podcasts are practically the only exception.  (I usually listen when alone.)

jumping for joy

While the podcasts cover different topics, they’re all often hilarious.  M decided he’s going to play them while he runs.  Jade recommended the show, The Good Place, which is currently on Netflix.  I binged two seasons of it last weekend, and highly recommend it.  I rarely watch anything other than nature documentaries, but I love this show.  It’s hysterically funny but also provokes a lot of thought.  Kristen Bell shines brightly in the lead role.  I can’t wait to view season 3.

I started a new novel, titled, 1Q84, by Haruki Murakami.  The story enthralls me so much; I don’t want to do anything but continue reading.  It’s my first book by this author, but won’t be my last.  It includes topics that usually trigger me, but it’s not the case here.  (I’ll ponder why when I finish as this intrigues me.)  In the back of my mind, I’m quietly and excitedly anticipating the upcoming Fleetwood Mac concert.  Each time I think of it, I smile.

Rhiannon still plays in my mind like a lullaby before I go to sleep.  I have three versions in my heart, now:  the original release, the more recent adaptation, and the live video footage from the ’70s — only the original functions as a lullaby.  The live versions are far edgier and provoke mental images of Stevie Nicks in her element.  It still amazes me how this song has been part of the soundtrack of my life since I was a small child, growing in significance as I mature.

I hope those who celebrate had delicious holiday meals.  I’m off to continue reading.  ✌🏽💜

“Did you ever notice how happy people are when they finally get a table?”

I’m not typically one to rave about the sports, but this is amazing!  I didn’t even know this sport existed before viewing this footage.  I’m an instant fan.  I also want to experience it for myself, (preferably with no audience.)  I’m reasonably sure I’d spend a good deal of my float time bashing into the walls while screaming; not that it would dissuade me from trying repeatedly.  Kyra Poh makes it look easy, though.  I think this is the type of footage we should broadcast to aliens.

Nine days until the Fleetwood Mac concert.  Part of me wants to camp out in the parking lot until it’s time for the show.  I already have my ticket and have practiced driving there twice.  I’m excited!  I’ve made a few contingency plans on the off chance my car breaks down, or the garage door refuses to let me out of the parking garage.  Nothing I can control will prevent me from seeing this concert.  Nothing!  Muahahaha!

I’ve been trying to write this post all day, but I’ve taken many breaks to dance, jump up and down, sing, and generally fail at containing my anticipatory joy.  I’m going to be in the same space with Stevie Nicks!  Words cannot express how happy I am about this.  I love her and am so glad she exists.  She’s taught me much by what she’s shared through her music and interviews, and it’s provided me with comfort and strength.  Music is powerful, and I don’t think I’d survive without it.

handful of joy

I’m on the brink of a new project with four other autistic women.  I don’t have much to share at this point, but it’s where I’ll be dedicating my (hyper) focus for the next five years, at least.  It’ll be my fourth career, in a way.  First I was a soldier in the Army, then a full-time student, a software engineer, and now this new project.  I’m probably not a multitasker.  I do best when I give all to a single endeavor.  It works for me.  When I feel pulled in multiple directions, I tend to shut down altogether, so I’m glad I know this about myself.

Also, I think people who can juggle several things at once while still giving their best to all are incredible.  I tend to stare at them in awe, despite getting busted for it often.  If I had a dollar for every time I’ve been caught staring, I’d be hella rich. I’ve consciously tried to stop doing it, but with no success. I suck at remembering if I can see people, they can see me too. If I were a decent photographer, I would take a damn picture, don’t you know. 😂

happy people

Next week is going to be busy. I have an appointment with an eye doctor, dentist, and the concert. I’ll also be meeting with the director of my local VA hospital and a Mental Health Professional before the dental appointment, to discuss my recent complaint of abusive treatment there. I’m low-level stressing about all three, but my excitement over the concert has all worries in an illegal sleeper hold. Yay. (I should probably knock out a few more difficult things while in this nothing-can-bring-me-down state of mind.)

On top of everything, I got an email from a dear friend I met on Twitter (before I recognized I’m social media impaired, SMI.) 😂 It’s a good thing Amy Lee already taught me I couldn’t die from being too happy. I have to say, though, if I get to choose, I want to die from overwhelming joy. I’m off to beat my drums while smiling like the doof I am. ✌🏽💜

“It’s pretty hot under these lights, huh, Seinfeld?”

Her Majesty, Amelia Bedelia

I had to pull out my weighted blanket, last night.  It didn’t help immediately, as in the past.  I was burning like Daenerys Stormborn when I first attempted sleep.  Whenever I feel overheated or short-winded, my body wants to move as if the activity will validate my discomfort.  I played Amelia Bedelia’s favorite game of hiding and stalking.  I suspect it amuses me as much as it does her.

I discovered she has rules for the game.  They’re simple:  The cat always wins.  I lay in wait for what seemed like minutes, trying not to giggle.  Then I pounced and startled the shit out of poor Amelia Bedelia.  She let loose a long, loud meow of disdain after landing from her gravity-defying leap of panic.  Then she smacked me in the face with her little paw.  (I imagine she was informing me I broke the rules, and she didn’t want to play with me anymore.)

I melted into a puddle of boneless belly-laughter while feeling mildly guilty for upsetting my sweet baby girl.  Then I silently scolded myself while replaying the hilarity of her reaction in my mind, (giggling all over again.)  Finally, I stifled my laughter and attended Her Majesty in her soundproof Fortress of Solitude.  She glared at me, daring me to reach in and try to pet her.  So I knelt before her and softly sang to Her Grace until she forgave me.

I created two new fairy lights recently.  I’m pleased it didn’t involve bleeding, for once, but the glue gun managed to exact an equally painful toll as quilting.  I used cardboard from a shipping box on the first version and a thin sheet of wood, the second, along with transparent film canisters as diffusers.  It produces a lovely, moving rainbow glow and reflects beautifully on the chrome stand of my drum kit.  It’s no wonder I can’t help smiling while I play.  (My band has accepted this after repeatedly suggesting it makes me look like a doof.)  Fairy light for drumkit

I placed the other above my Mac workstation.  It amazes me how fairy lights set the tone of a room.  I copied Ray Bradbury by surrounding myself with things I love when I pursue creative projects.  His desk was far more cluttered than I prefer, but my addiction to synthesizers promises I’ll catch up before long.  (My intention of only collecting software synthesizers didn’t survive my first catalog from Sweetwater Music.)

Teenage Engineering just released their latest portable synth, shattering my resolve.  I haven’t ordered it yet, but I know it’s only a matter of time.  There are always people with more money than patience and a willingness to master new tools.  I call it the Dork Discount.  It’s surprisingly reliable where pretty synthesizers are concerned.  Yay.  My former days of refusing to RTFM are history where synthesizers are concerned.  Instead, I read everything I can find about them.  Then I head over to YouTube to watch tutorials.  I’m such a noob.  😂

Fairy light 2

I stepped up the pace in my Game of Thrones viewing.  The season 6 finale was so fabulous I’ve watched it three times, so far.  The music score for the episode is my favorite part.  It’s just so perfect it made me tear up.  I haven’t begun season 7 yet;  I need to allow for some processing time.  So much happened, none of which I predicted from reading the novels.  Lady Mormont is my new favorite character.  No spoilers.  🙃  I can’t wait to watch it again.  I’m off to beat my drums with sticks.  💜