” It has come to my attention that some people here think that the use of drugs is something to laugh about.”

This video is for a short story by Andy Weir (The Martian and Artemis.)  It’s been on my mind since I first viewed it.  It aligns with my beliefs but goes beyond where I stopped imagining.  (When I realized I couldn’t find out what happens after death without dying, my interest plummeted.)  Andy Weir has a fabulous imagination.

I have a more organized understanding of why I view others as I do, now.  My transition to full auntie has surprised me in some ways.  I thought I would suddenly become a little cranky and say shit like, get off my lawn, (even though I don’t have one.)  I was looking forward to having no more damns to give.  I was wrong.

It’s the opposite.  It’s no longer possible for people younger than me to irk me.  When they make mistakes, my reaction varies from an inner chuckle over the memory of when I made the same mistake, to me cheering for them for taking a risk and making that mistake.  It’s weird and fun.

sky gazing

Just the other day, I saw a young person make a mistake, and I remember thinking they must be creative.  Heh.  Full auntie rocks.  Also, I have more awe for (good) active parents.  I still feel wrapped in the mesmerizing vibe of Fleetwood Mac from the concert in February.  I hope it never goes away.

I got a concert BluRay of Evanescences’ Synthesis Live a while ago.  The formerly scary (to me) audience has transformed into one where I’ll probably be the weirdest present when I go.  Yay.  (Even though I know, I’m going to bawl the whole time, just like at the Beyoncè show.)  I don’t care.  I’ll bring tissues.

If you heard someone shouting, yes, repeatedly, yesterday, it was probably me.  Or some other Gettin’ Grown listener.  Chef Jade and Dr. Keia are back.  😆  I missed them and am proud of them for demonstrating excellent self-care.  (Tell me, show me, sing about it, they all help me grow.)

I read I’m Telling the Truth, But I’m Lying, by Bassey Ikpi recently.  (Recommended by both The Read and The Friend Zone podcasts.)  It’s essays that describe the experiences of someone coming to terms with mental illness.  It’s as intimate as thought and highly relatable in a manner that allows you to feel safe enough to observe up close.  When it ended, I wanted it to keep going.

It reminded me we’re as much alike as different, and left me feeling hopeful.  Definitely worth reading.  I hope it becomes mandatory reading for mental health professionals.  I’m off to get ready for date night.  I’m dressing up for the first time in ages, so this should be interesting.  Heh.  ✌🏽💜

p.s.  I’m obsessed with The Office now.  Until further notice, titles going forward will be quotes from that show.

“That’s when I began my affair with Mohandas.”

Threads by Sheryl Crow

Threads by Sheryl Crow dropped today.  I’ve listened with my full attention twice so far.  Once with my desktop monitors, and once with Bose QC35 headphones.  All I can say is; wow.  I’ll be spending a lot of time with this album.  In my head, I’m listening with Stevie Nicks and Solange.  (I need them to collaborate on a project IRL.  Please, dear universe.)

I’m so proud of Sheryl Crow.  The track, Redemption Day, is an old song reenvisioned.  The new version made me sit down like I was getting a tattoo on my soul.  I’m listening with Grado headphones next.  I think they’ll be the sweet spot, but I have three others to test, (all German engineered.)  I love Sheryl Crow.  Her energy is beautiful.

I’m slowly rebooting post-meltdown.  I’m doing it differently, this time.  Instead of fleeing inward, I’m gradually recovering while present.  I’ve accepted it’s a process, and am not indulging in any cynical internal narration to amuse myself in the meantime.  It was fun when I didn’t know better.  Now if I do it, I picture my mom looking at me like she may have overestimated my intelligence.  (Cut to my ego in an ER where the doctor just yelled, clear!)

woman

My victories this week include things like brushing my teeth and showering.  Each one empowers me to gain another, but for now, I can do three or four hard things a day.  I exercised, ate, showered, brushed my teeth, and paid bills today.  Yay, me!  I still have energy left for the evening, plus I can find essential words on demand, today.  😆

I missed a dental appointment, but I didn’t waste energy beating myself up for it.  (I used it to reschedule.)  I’m so grateful to have my voice back.  It feels like being allowed to wear clothing in public again.  I have a ways to go till recovered, but I’ll get there.  Solange’s music is healing in ways I can’t yet articulate.  It makes me feel valuable.  I didn’t know music could do that.  I’m off to commune with Threads.  💜✌🏽

“Yeah. They should make a movie about all the Hindenburg flights that made it.”

negative self-talk

I got gently course-corrected by The Friend Zone podcast this week.  It related to how I identify healing, what it means, and my expectations of life after that.  (I’m reasonably sure I’ve established my propensity for over-excitement.)  I’ve since re-evaluated, sat with, and reigned in my expectations.  In a way, it’s a relief because my expectations were kind of lofty. 🤭  I’m grateful; (imagine how much time this adjustment will save.)  The assignment this week is to counter each negative thought with five positive (before sleeping) to train away negative self-talk.

It sounded like a lot to me at first.  But I tried it, and it’s fun.  I’m enjoying it as much as a video game that doesn’t depend solely on hand-eye coordination for advancement. 😶  It unlocked a new level in life, too.  Now, I am suddenly able to recall lots of good memories from times in my life when traumatic memories used to block them.  It’s fracking awesome!  I knew I had a ridiculous amount of fun while serving, but couldn’t trace it back to very many specific memories.  Now I can, and it began from thinking of positive things to counter negative self-talk.

The timing was excellent, as I didn’t make it north to visit my sister.  I was busy mentally tearing myself into ickle bitty pieces over it when the airshow shut me down for a while.  (Even though my sisters’ response was so kind, it made me cry.)  I was repeating my old habit of jumping in with both feet like my life hasn’t been a cautionary tale advising the opposite.  I forgot. 🤭  (My body remembered and activated all the alarms.)  I’m one of those people who have to experience the lesson to grok it, half the time.

Boxer dog

My level of interest determines how quickly I learn, which is as much a blessing as a curse.  If I’m interested, I learn so quickly people behave differently around me ever after.  (It’s weird and fascinating.)  If not, I’m no longer surprised by people assuming I’m intellectually challenged based on how much repetition is required for me to learn.  (I went from my ego being in intensive care to no damns to give rather quickly in that regard.)  It also strengthened my asshole detector; bonus.  Sometimes, I wish I could control this by faking interest, but so far, nope.

I did make it to Denver, even though I just had a meltdown recently.  Flying is a lot easier than driving for me, and TSA is part of why.  I know it’s weird, but I like TSA in Denver and Sioux Falls.  They help make it possible for me to travel alone.  I was an inch from bawling over the slightest thing and still managed to maneuver an international airport by myself without shedding a single tear.  The app on my phone failed to load my boarding pass.  Seconds before I tilted my head back and just crumbled into a most pitiful pile, a TSA person stepped in and gave me clear instructions on how to resolve it.

And when I did step one then promptly got lost, another TSA person stepped in like they were in a relay race passing batons. They even wrote me a note, so I didn’t have to stand in the long ass security line twice.  I know about the services that prevent this, but I need the time to mentally prepare for following all the instructions without holding up others.  (I’m so much better at it now than when I first started traveling again.)  A TSA person pulled me aside and told me exactly how to behave (body language) when in line so that I would stop getting all my bags scrutinized.  She didn’t have to do that, and I’m thankful.  It makes me wonder if they get training for interacting with neurodivergent people.  (It seems like they do.)

I was able to speak aloud at the time, but not much beyond lots of nodding and showing my phone screen.  I know a lot of people are annoyed by TSA, but to me, they’re helpful and pleasant.  (At least in Sioux Falls and Denver.)  Guitar Hero is teaching me how to use weed as a creative tool.  (I can tell he was a hippie because he has a lot of rules about respecting pot.)  I’m loving every minute of being calm in my body.  It’s a lot like coming up for air after staying underwater a little too long.  I’m off to introduce him to Solange. 😆💜✌🏾

“Scissors mishap, air show disaster, chinese organ thieves; it’s a dangerous world.”

reset count

I’m recovering from a meltdown.  An airshow (and the practice leading up to it) shut me down like an off switch.  Bose QC35 noise-canceling headphones, worn from sunup to sundown, couldn’t shield me from the ridiculous pilot shenanigans; she said, acidly.  I was in air defense units for several years of my military career.  I’ve been vigilant of the sky ever since as if programmed to assume watch whenever outdoors.  It wasn’t part of my specialty, but I had the opportunity to witness, and a few times, (range) fire all of the Army’s air defense weaponry.  Cherished experiences.

I don’t worry about war, as many do.  America has been at war my entire life, and likely yours.  I have a tremendous amount of faith in our military from experiencing it firsthand.  I paid for this comfort with sweat, tears, and anxiety that too often manifested as inopportune hurling for distance.  (Raising fist in solidarity with anyone who has ever been beaten up for accidentally barfing on someone.)  It was worth it.  Plus, I had access to a lot of cool shit a decade before civilians; (like email.)  I just deleted a whole paragraph about the old days.  You’re welcome. 🙃

I’m hoping to regain my ability to speak aloud today.  I’m confident Solange’s A Seat at the Table on repeat will draw out my voice.  Music’s power over my neurology and mood astonishes and delights me.  It’s my favorite survival tool.  When I can’t talk, I tend to stop communicating altogether.  People are especially dangerous at these times, so it’s isolation without my consent.  When I recover basic functionality, I may enjoy solitude a little too much.  The rock I used to dwell beneath sends such warm invitations.  (In my head, Stevie Nicks clears her throat, then burns them while making eye contact.)  No worries on that front.  Heh.

I’m off to start wrapping my head around a mini-vacation this weekend.  Good thing I like obsessively planning for shit.  😂✌🏾💜

“I don’t even really work here!”

 

Dragon hint

A Black Lady Sketch Show on HBO is my new favorite show.  I’ve been streaming it like it’s Homecoming by Beyoncé.  I’m an okay bitch with autism, yo.  (Flutters my bald eyelashes.)  HBO is still the only network that can tell me where to be and when; (so bossy.) 😉  I hope they have Wanda Sykes and Whoopie Goldberg on there at some point. (And Regina King, Ellen Cleghorne, Aisha Tyler, and so many more.) 😆

I’m going to stream it again after this.  Heh.  I keep wanting to talk about Solange, but words don’t work here.  It would be a post of me typing Solange over and over again while grinning like a doof.  (You have no idea how close I came to doing just that.) At least it would feel kind of like expressing my joy for her existence.  Sigh.

Solange isn’t just the newest member of my Healing Sisters Internal Advisory Panel (HSIAP via music.)  She’s the boss.  In my head, she walked right up to Stevie Nicks, Amy Lee, Agnetha Faltzkog, Sheryl Crow, Mary J. Blige, (there’s more) and Beyoncé, and said, can I hold the mic, please?  (All signs indicate Solange won’t be giving it back any time soon.)  She skipped trying to reach me with mere lyrics and went right for my spirit.  😳🤭

Solange When I Get Home Vinyl

Solange has been here before.  Her music.  Nobody who only lived that long for the first time can do that, yo.  That’s the best I can articulate.  (And yes, I’m working on it.)  I know a lot of other artists are popping right now, but frankly, Solange practically owns my ears at this time.  Aside from Brown Skin Girl, of course.  That song is on repeat whenever I’m not listening to Solange’s When I Get Home.  Everything else is on pause.

I’m getting ready for a solo road trip north.  My sister needs me, and she’s the one person left on this planet who has mom-like powers over me.  (Otherwise, oh hell no.)  It’s a big deal for me to drive five hours in a single day with ridiculously monotonous scenery.  I’ve done it before, but not often.  To go from that challenge immediately to being in someone else’s space to offer my services as a sister is bigger.

My spirit stirred me to do it, which is something I haven’t wrapped my head around yet.  (I don’t think I would have even picked up on it if not for Dr. Keia mentioning these things happen.)  Hence, running with it.  My sister knows me well enough to avoid hinting since it’s futile with me.  (Tell me what you mean, or disappointment will ensue.) It’s time to stretch my more healed self and flex my growth.  I’m terrified, but I’m going to do it anyway.

open road

When I get home (heh), I’m going to Denver for a mini recreational vacation.  Guitar Hero is going to buddy-sit while I transform from a nodder who never makes eye contact into someone who suddenly uses gestures, looks at people, and won’t STFU for an hour after two hits.  He finds it amusing and claims it’s like hanging out with my anime version.  (Possibly said animated, but I like anime better.) Enough oversharing.  I’m off to belly laugh over my new favorite show. 💜✌🏽