“I have another complaint for Jim’s permanent file.”

decorative toys and stuffies

I had a fun Halloween.  I dressed up as a sloth and passed out candy very slowly to trick-or-treaters.  I suspect some of the kids didn’t recognize I was role-playing and thought I was just old.  Heh.  (A few got impatient and went to another apartment, then returned when I broke character after noticing it only amused me.)  The kids were loud, excited, and adorable.  I liked having their energy breeze through.

I couldn’t figure out how to take a selfie while masked.  🤪  M invited me to join him at a party, but the theme included the word haunted or horror.  We both started laughing after he asked.  I’ve never been wired to appreciate the thrill of being scared.  Epigenetics, yo.  I’m a wee bit jealous of the people who can participate in such things (without crying.) I have my Blu-rays of Us and Get Out that I won’t be watching, ever. (I bought them to support Jordan Peele.)

I haven’t even watched American Horror Story, and Stevie Nicks is in it. (!!!) (M said that alone proves it’s epigenetics.)  😂  My mind is running all over the place.  I’m officially a Lizzo fan.  I loved her immediately.  I find out about new-to-me artists from my favorite podcasts lately.  My introduction to American Griots, by Louis York, was terrific.  They performed a song on The Friend Zone podcast, and it was ear candy.  I preordered the album immediately after.  (It’s so good!)

neon sign stating, it was all a dream

XD, from Jade and XD, created a unisex fragrance, called, D’Leau.  I ordered some, and in the process, created two scents of my own.  Both M and I are in love with D’Leau.  It’s officially my favorite at this time.  However, the ones I created reek.  (It turns out; I suck at it.) Fortunately, I don’t care because I have D’Leau.  😆  I’ve had two people ask me about it so far (and you know I don’t get out much.)  😂

It’s World of Warcraft’s 15th anniversary.  I’ve been playing on and off for eleven years now.  I have no plans of quitting, although I did have an unfortunate incident the other day. I was soloing a dungeon from The Burning Crusade, and some toon assassin appeared from thin air behind me.  It scared the shit out of me, and I nearly had a panic attack.  I took a three-day break, then got right back in there and reran it, this time on the heroic setting.

It still startled me when I triggered the assassin again, but I didn’t panic.  I just stood there and let the bastard try to kill my toon until I got bored, then ended him with nonchalance.  (I’m a level 110 tank, and he was level 80 or something.)  I’m so glad Blizzard allows us to travel back to lower level areas to exact revenge.  I don’t do it often, but when I do, I drink Dos Equis I usually have a blast.  I’m going to upgrade because they’re releasing a new expansion next year.  It’ll probably take me that long to reach level 120.  Heh.  I’m off to play.  💜✌🏽

p.s.  Missy Elliot was on The Read TV show on Fuse!!!

“Pam, I’m public speaking. Stop public interrupting me.”

new magnet

I had a good week.  I don’t think I cried the whole time.  (Probably a record.)  I did smash my fingers in the sliding doors, but I’m fine now.  I’ve been cautious about closing it ever since.  Before this, I cleaned the track and put WD-40 on it, but my muscle memory didn’t get the memo.  It was crawling around on the floor, making up new swear words, painful, but it didn’t leave a mark the next day.  (Based on the pain, it seems like a finger should have fallen off or something, but I’m not complaining.)

I got a new vacuum cleaner, recently.  It’s so much better than the last one I killed; I enjoy using it.  (Shark Navigator DLX.)  I think it might survive at least a year, which is impressive for a home with a cat.  Amelia B is a fur factory.  I didn’t know I was a cat person until I got one.  (In fact, I was quite convinced I was not a cat person.) I’ve decided it’s because my cat thinks she’s a dog.  (She’s great at fetch except for bringing it ba  nm.)

I loved listening to Loren Bouchard on 3 Questions with Andy Richter podcast this week.  I’m even more a fan now that I’ve heard him share his passion for his craft.  He’s fascinating and did an excellent job of answering the questions and expounding on them.  I watched the first few episodes of Home Movies again recently on the Adult Swim app.  I also love Bob’s Burgers, and Lucy, Daughter of the Devil.

Solange and new Funkos

For a long time, I could only watch animation or anime TV shows.  Anything with suspense, graphic violence, sirens, etc. was too triggering, but I was okay with shows like King of the Hill, Family Guy, The Simpsons, The Boondocks, etc.  Adult Swim and The Cartoon Network helped me get through some tough times and lots of insomnia.  Loren Bouchard mentioned it’s because cartoons enter our brains differently than live-action.

It explains why I can play World of Warcraft, but don’t enjoy hyper-realistic, violent games.  I love Blizzard for creating a playful world where I can feel powerful without harming others, or go fishing or fly around looking at the scenery.  When I struggle in an area of the game, I go back when I’m several levels higher and lay waste like Daenerys Targaryan over King’s Landing.  (Harmless retribution feels fabulous when the monsters that used to kill your toon die from a single blow.)

I discovered listening to audiobooks is perfect for me.  I cleaned my apartment yesterday while listening to a new novel, and realized it was even more satisfying than reading.  I don’t have to worry about staying in a weird position for too long while engrossed anymore.  Yay.  (It will also be useful when depression overwhelms, and I can’t hold my head up long enough to read.)

Funkos

I figured out the camera flash, this time.  🤭 I followed The Office Ladies podcast, of course.  I love podcasts that talk about TV shows with which I’m obsessed (InsecuriTea podcast for insecure and Jade and XD for several shows.)  I’m thrilled I’m able to watch live-action TV shows again, but more so when I can listen to people also invested in the story discuss what took place.  (Geekster paradise.)  I’m off to wind down for the day.  ✌🏽💜

 

“You know how I’m always making those interesting comments during the game.”

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I’m doing alright.  The Depression Monster is trying all sorts of tactics, and finding they don’t work so well on someone present in their body. 🙃 I’m busy fighting them off, but it’s different now.  It’s a lot easier to defend the castle when I’m in it than when I’m off floating on a cloud of code.  It doesn’t take all my resources any longer, which is wicked awesome.

Now, even while under attack, I can also work on creating, healing, and collecting moments of joy — significant flex.  Aw.  The Depression Monster must be sad.  Your dethroning after all this time hurts, eh?  I know we go way back, but we’re not friends.  I’m going to name it a Passing Acquaintance.  Thanks for helping me grow.  I’m moving on to whatever comes next.  (In heels AF1’s.)

A great deal of healing is happening in my life.  I think my subconscious is making essential connections while I sleep.  I’m sleeping differently; more productively.  I awaken feeling like I spent all night coding in my sleep, yet feel rested.  My recent changes in perspective regarding trauma while conscious seem like such small changes compared to the results I’m experiencing.  Thank goodness it’s working in my favor.

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I can’t remember what I’m dreaming, but I do notice myself acting out briefly, then pausing to examine what is going on.  I felt like my stress tolerance level got reset back to childlike yesterday.  It was sudden and confusing.  I felt intense rage over the slightest provocation.  Um.  No.  So I converted the mysterious rage energy into music with my drums.  (I finally understand heavy metal.)

I recognized I need to go back to Azeroth (World of Warcraft) and spend some time carefully stretching my stress balloon.  It’s my safe place to get frightened and stressed out in a controlled environment.  Any time I feel super frustrated or like I’m about to cry, I hop up and walk around while calming myself and using a Night King boost.  I’m going to build a new toon from level 1 and help other players as I go.

This social aspect of the game helps me build confidence in my ability to connect with strangers (without getting punched if I make a mistake.)  I role-play with my Paladin by acting out my purpose as a protector who serves others in my faction.  I support players who go all out in PVP capture the flag scenarios by healing and reviving, instead of glory seeking.  (I probably don’t play right, but I have fun and make friends.)

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Video games get a bad rap, but I see them as incredible tools when used to build up stress tolerance.  It’s a shortcut, (and having a childlike stress tolerance level is hell.)  Adults who are unable to self-diffuse a potential full-blown tantrum before it happens in realtime are in crisis.  Not it.  I need to be able to think before I speak or react.  Video games allow us to work it out at home, (so long as we focus on self-soothing and calming while our brain thinks the shit is hitting the fan.)

For me, I listen to ABBA Gold quietly on repeat, aim a small fan at the back of my neck, and drink soothing tea while I play.  I set a timer for sixty minutes, and I play (as a tank) for strangers with a walking break at halfway.  I know if I mess up, everyone in my group will be disappointed, and their abilities to cope with it will be all over the place.  Some will log off, while others go off.  My job is to take it all in and reflect calmness and kindness.  I feel the stress and let it pass through me, unclaimed.

Each time, it gets easier.  Eventually, the stress and fear become just part of the excitement, not a misidentified provocation to enter the fight-freeze-flight mode.  I love healing at home.  Now that I have my cherished map, it’s inevitable, and that makes me so happy.  I have all these tools and control over how I experience my life now.  The distinction is crucial to me.  I’m off to build my new toon.  💜✌🏽