“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. ✌🏽💜

“Leo, I don’t care for your demeanor.”

children learning

I mentioned in comments recently how Sheryl Crow is teaching me how to communicate with people from a more productive place.  Her song, Halfway There on her Be Myself album is my anthem for the lesson.  (It’s also a great song.)  Music is the most effective way to teach me something.  I feel like I’ve already made good progress.  Now, when communicating, instead of only thinking about presenting my viewpoint, I also think about how those who might not agree will hear it.

The reasoning behind the lesson is the fact there’s little point in expressing my opinion in a manner that will cause the listener to tune me out.  I have a cat for that.  Heh.  I know whenever I speak to her, she’s listening for keywords, (such as, treat.)  She’s interested in my tone of voice.  Anything beyond is noise.  If I want people to consider my opinions as worthy of thinking about, I have to work on how I present them.  Just like with Amelia Bedelia, my tone of voice, and the words I choose will make or break the conversation.

I didn’t realize how horrible I am at this until recently.  I tend to come off like a drill Sgt.  In my defense, I did virtually grow up in the Army.  I’ve been out long enough to recognize it’s an entirely different world than that of a civilian.  It took a long time for me to adapt.  The hardest part was accepting civilian attitudes.  It’s incredibly frustrating to work with (or even be around) people who aren’t giving their best by default.  Of course, not all civilians are like this, but I seem to find the ones who are regularly.  😂

child weeping

Fortunately, I no longer lecture people on the merits of doing their best, (like a drill Sgt.)  I even try to keep my face in check, but I’m never sure I manage.  I’m a thought telegrapher.  (You can probably imagine how much fun this added to my training. /sarcasm)  Worse, my expressions aren’t necessarily the NT (neurotypical) version.  Aside from about-to-laugh or about-to-cry, I’ve been told I look angry when I’m thinking or processing.  Damn eyebrows.

Body language is something I’ve decided not to stress over any longer.  I don’t get it, I probably never will, so no more beating myself up over it.  As for my own, I’m working on not walking away like I’m trying to escape whenever I talk to people.  (Even though, half the time, I am.)  My entire lifestyle centers around not having to speak (out loud) to strangers much.  I suspect many who have or had a speech impediment share this habit.  I also used to put my foot in my mouth virtually every time I opened it.  (Thank goodness, Stevie Nicks already taught me the importance of thinking before saying.  Love her!)  Now I’m ready to take it further.  Baby steps, yo.  🙃

The battle for access to abuse-free health care continues.  Jade and Keia of Gettin’ Grown talked about the fact African American women frequently die prematurely due to racism in the medical field on this week’s podcast.  I felt validated after listening.  I’m not the only one who has had to deal with doctors or dentists who don’t think black people feel pain.  Or who automatically disbelieve anything we say.  I’m glad I decided I’m not going to die prematurely due to the crudeness and cruelty of some alleged professionals.

I’m proud of myself for refusing to see the evil dentist who mistreated me again.  I looked right at her (probably with angry eyebrows) and said, “No.  I specifically stated I would not be seen by her again when I made the appointment.”  The receptionist acted confused, but I saw a different dentist that day.  It was the first time I stood up for myself, but not the last.  I’m grateful the Patient Care Representative at the VA is a (more than) decent human being.  She’s already helped put in motion an eye exam, and I’ll be seeing a non-evil dentist later this month.

cute cat on the floor

I wrote her a note identifying some examples of the abuse I’ve endured in the Mental Health clinic and ward.  I didn’t share much, and only mentioned one person by name, but it was an overwhelming exercise.  I also shared how I was dealing with my ex-husband turning into Ramsay Bolton at the time, which is what drove me to seek assistance in the first place.  It brought back all the shit I’ve had to put up with since I got out of the military.  Plus, the Kavanaugh Travesty triggered me and stapled me to the floor as a result.  It was like standing in the midst of a trauma avalanche.  Good times.

I’m doing better now, (finally stopped weeping.)  I look and feel like I talked shit about Mike Tyson’s mom in his earshot, but at least I’m not silently wishing slow deaths on everyone who ever hurt me any longer, (then feeling guilty about it.)  I finally slept, which helped.  I also listened to lots of music and watched a Will and Grace marathon while pacing.  I might take the saying, walk it off, too literally, but whatever works.  I paid enough attention to recognize how insensitive (and probably offensive) we were in the 90’s.  I didn’t notice back then.  (+100 to the millennials for helping us see how unkind we were without realizing it.)  ✌🏽

p.s.  Here is a fabulous, healing, and hopeful video.  #SISTERHOOD

“Elaine is writing a sitcom!”

Raven flying

I’m so glad it’s finally cooled off.  I love fall and winter.  I finished watching season 7 of Game of Thrones.  I’m so pleased with what HBO has created.  The season was short, but so much happened.  I purchased the seasons on Bluray because I don’t have HBO, but I plan on subscribing before season 8 begins, now that I’ve seen what they can do.

I wrote a short story about a scientist who created a contagious airborne agent that caused mass infertility, (tentatively) titled, The Politician.  She released it in a few international airports, then followed it’s spread across the world on 24-hour news channels.  It took seven years before world governments publicly acknowledged its existence.  She was then chosen to lead an international team to work on a cure.  😂

My inner mad-scientist often cackled while writing.  The Republicans in America initially blamed environmentalists for creating it.  The US Congress armed task forces to round up environmentalists (without bothering with things like evidence or due process.)  After the sanctioned murder of several such citizens, the scientist released a manifesto calling for an end to patriarchal rule in exchange for a cure.  HPV

Sadly, Congress refused to do anything but spend more tax dollars on locating the agents’ creator rather than adopting term limits and other suggested changes that would interfere with their ability to wield excessive power over everyone else in America.  Soon, everyone with ovaries was suspect in the eyes of law enforcement.  It became even more dangerous to exist as a woman; the opposite of what the scientist wanted.  The world population began to decline due to an increase in mass suicides and no new births.

writing and editingAfter a few decades with no cure in sight, and the murder of women at an all-time high, the future of the human race is in question.  Then I realized it’s too long to be a short story.  I tried to edit with a heavy hand, but it caused even the main characters to lose dimension and relatability.  So I decided it’s a novel.  Heh.

I continued to follow a group who set up an underground thinktank to develop an approach to end the crisis without more bloodshed.  They assisted people in fleeing the United States and tried to communicate with the scientist.  Their main concern was in preserving humanity by building a world where nobody had the power to interfere in the lives of others; where law applied to everyone equally, including those chosen to create and enforce them.

I’m about 400 pages in now.  I’m not sure I want to finish and submit it for publication yet.  I’ll keep working on it and see how I feel when it’s complete.  My band is coming over later to watch a Sheryl Crow live concert on DVD.  Yay.  Only 25 days until the Fleetwood Mac concert.  Uber-yay.  😆  I’m off to practice drumming.  ✌🏽💜

“You could read the paper through the whole thing if you want.”

AFTF: Puma Custom Genetic Supplement

I hope those celebrating are having a blast this Independence Day.  In case you missed it, Sheryl Crow is releasing her final album in 2019.  After that, she’s only releasing singles.  Stevie Nicks is going to be on it.  I’m grinning like Oprah just adopted me.  😁   Just a quick flyby before our gig.  I’ll be back to regular posting this weekend.  ✌

“It was like my own personal Crying Game.”

human

Today is flying by so quickly.  I haven’t slept in a while; there are just so many things I prefer doing.  Sleep is a necessary chore I avoid as much as possible.  It’s when my mind attempts to process all the terrible things I force myself to pretend don’t exist while I’m conscious.  (I need desperately to overcome my shame for choosing this self-preservation.)

It’s just that it’s the only way I can stand being alive.  I give myself a pep talk each time I arise.  Life is unbearably painful sometimes.  I endure for the moments of joy.  It’s not elaborate:  I trained myself to recall something fabulous the moment I awaken.  I’m going to see Beyoncè in August, and Fleetwood Mac not long after.  😃 😁

I’m getting astonishing mileage out of the anticipation.  🙌🏽 I’m a bit shaky today because I’m not crying as much as my spirit needs.  I hate crying, but not as much as I hate bursting into tears at the worst time due to emotional constipation; (especially when I know laughing can easily trigger backed up tears.)  Laughing is my favorite thing to do;  I don’t want to ruin it.

cow

Instead, I’m going to cry while I play Schindler’s List theme by John Williams on my violin to some cows.  It’s like crying while crying.  Heh.  I’m not even playing because it’s 2018; the year I believe will lead to drug stores selling FDA approved suicide kits for $19.95.  The Force is out of balance on our beautiful planet.  We all feel it.

I’m overwhelmingly sensitive to the energy of others.  I see your pain before I see you;  (it’s keener than my crappy vision.)  I’m also empathetic by nature.  It makes agoraphobia my shadow.  I can code for days (with short bio-breaks,) and create worlds I can bask in without the heaviness of hatred and ignorance I’m forced to witness and endure every day.

These digital worlds are a poor substitution for fellowship with humans, of course, but at least they don’t hurt so much.  I can breathe, learn, explore, and exist freely there.  I can pursue my passions, hone my skills, and develop new abilities.  I experience a great deal of contentment and know I could more easily survive for a long time in my private worlds.  The temptation to crawl back under that digital rock is intense.

But then I remember what I discovered when I crawled out, not too long ago:  Stevie Nicks.  (Others as well, but she’s the epitome of why I now exist in the world outside my head, despite everything.)  Perhaps you assumed by now I’d calm down and stop being so excited about Stevie Nicks.  You know nothing, Jon Snow.  🙃  I’m off to release some sorrow before it overflows.  ✌🏽

Stevie Nicks

“In times of crisis, the wise build bridges, while the foolish build barriers. We must find a way to look after one another as if we were one single tribe.” -Black Panther