I first visited Omelas as a young teen, joining the processions, listening to the dark eyed youth play his flute.  Ursula K. Le Guin was a marvel, new, exciting, a writer who dared talk about *giggle* gender in THE LEFT HAND OF DARKNESS and this sad child locked in a broom closet in.  Awwww. . .

I returned to Omelas in ...continue reading At the Gates of Omelas

I have struggled to write this post for weeks, rather months, okay, since January 20, 2017.  Like many sane people, I have difficulty processing much of what has happened in the past 12 months, kind of like processing being hit by a mack truck and dragged for a mile caught in its undercarriage as an afterthought.

The urge to wax poetic about my struggles with depression and suicidal ideation during the Year of Bizarro ...continue reading 2017 – The Good, The Bad, The WTF?

If you need any help, just ask, I said.  I'd love to learn more, I said.

Sure thing, they said.  Hey, we have this story and you'd be terrific, they said.

Sure thing, I said.

Me and my big mouth.

Since then, ...continue reading Brain Weasels Hate Showtunes

Brain weasels are jerks.  Their nests clutter your thoughts, and the weasels gnaw on your sense of self worth, your confidence, your belief that you are deserving of common courtesy and respect.  Once a nest of brain weasels gets going, they can keep you up all night with their incessant chittering and it seems like they'll  never stop.

Case in point:

Early in our marriage, hubby and I applied for the Christmas Angel program through Kitsap Community Resources so our boys could have presents under our tiny Christmas shrub (I still have the picture around here somewhere).  For two years, complete strangers gave of themselves to deliver clothes and toys so our children would have something to open on Christmas day.  Hubby and I promised ourselves we would someday pay the generosity forward to another family.

Years passed, our ...continue reading The Giving Tree (or Resistance Is Never Futile)

"Where do you get your ideas?"

Writers write what we know, teasing out bits of truth to flavor our fiction.  Here is one such truth.  Somewhat squicky pictures below.  You've been warned.

It's all started here.

Before
Before

A small sore on the side of my nose turned out to be a schlerocizing basal cell rodent tumor with an aggressive hysology (i.e., it grew fast and ate away at the flesh.)  In March of 2016 ...continue reading Phobias, and Where Stories Come From

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"The difference between shame and guilt is the difference between 'I am bad' and 'I did something good'."   -Dr. Brene Brown

Yesterday I did a good thing.  I shared something BIG with my husband, the man who holds my heart and has my back, and with that telling I was ashamed.

(Yeah, yeah, I know.  I have nothing to be ashamed of, I'm a good person, be strong, be proud of myself.  Another moody writer, blah, blah, blah. Moving on.)

Shame is depression's Child.  It strips away the good and strong, proves to me I am not worthy, shatters joy.  Shame follows depression and diabetes everywhere, laughs at the same jokes, eats what they eat.  Oh, yes.  Double fudge chocolate malts with extra malt, a bacon burger with extra bacon, a large order of onion rings, and a slice of pecan pie, warm, with whipped cream, for dessert.  And a Sprite Zero, of course.  Have to watch those blood sugars, don't'cha know.

Since starting therapy (mumbled) years ago, I have made considerable, if often painful, progress.  Every day I struggle to reclaim what my father and ex-husband have taken away.  A good friend would say progress not perfection.  I recognize that I am better off now than I was when I made that first call for help; ;I also recognize that I have far to go.  I am only now coming to grips with the jagged pieces of my childhood, and in part that entails another phase of addressing my abusive relationship with food.

So, where does this leave me and why am I sharing all this?  Maybe to hold myself accountable.

I use food for the same reason an alcoholic drink and a drug addict uses (I do not consider marijuana in this category.  Deal with it.).  Food is friend, comfort, and executioner rolled into one.  I deserve to have diabetes because I am a bad person.  I eat to console myself, drug myself, then punish myself with more food because my blood sugar numbers are already horrific.  Eat to console, eat to punish.  Rinse, repeat.

Yesterday I started Jardiance, a medication that promotes the body to pass even more sugar through the urine.  I feel like roadkill.  The med has made a significant difference in my sugars, by as much as 70 points at some readings, and now my body is convinced I'm having a permanent low blood sugar and I must EAT ALL THE THINGS.  I'M DYING!  GET THE SUGARS BACK UP WHERE THEY BELONG.  MOAR!  MOAR!!!

Depression is one of the cornerstones of my often tenuous mental health.  It fuels the diabetes which in turn fuels the depression, and shame feeds off them both  Talk about a co-dependent relationship.

Stay tuned. . .

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I found myself writing upstairs yesterday.  "Are you sure you want to do that?" I said.

Myself didn't look up from the monitor.  "Mmmmm?"

"Write that novel.."

Myself nodded, still not looking up.  "Mmmhmm."

I dropped onto the couch, sending the cat running.  "The first one hasn't even sold."

"It will."

"You hope."

That earned an eyebrow but ...continue reading So I Says To Myself. . .

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(Trigger Warning:  writer expresses thoughts, feelings, and concerns that mark her as human.)

I have only recently become strong enough to open up about my mental illness.  I almost said comfortable, but there are certain aspects of my life that are far from it.  There are places in my head, and voices in those places, that follow their own agendas whether social, sexual, or, in one instance, directly suicidal.  Sounds melodramatic, huh?  Not quite.

I had a rough day on Thursday, not my worst day by far, but dark enough that I spent most of the day hiding in bed and ...continue reading Breaking Bad & Self Care