How I Crank These Out

You may have noticed, and you may not have noticed. Not only do I blog almost daily, but I have a habit of revising previous blog posts on occasion. Sometimes I find a better way of saying something. Sometimes I discover something new about the subject and put a little bit about it in the old posts.

Some people think I’m weird for doing it. But when you come from my background in graphic design, you learn that revisions are the most important part of making the idea more than average. You improve and refine the idea into something that fits the goal of your objective. I feel I have to do the same with my posts. I want to communicate myself to the best of my ability. Not that I care too much if people read it or not, but if people do read it I want to be sure that I make some kind of sense. I want them to at least think about what I’m saying, and it want them to enjoy, hate, laugh, cry, or feel something about it.

Sometimes my revisions aren’t anything big. Sometimes I just go through and make corrections. Fix spelling mistakes and what not. I write these pretty late at night so a spelling mistake or two is bound to happen in my very sleepy state. I schedule them to post the next day, but often write them in the tense of when they are posting. When I say “yesterday” I actually mean yesterday from when I post it. Which is the same day I wrote it. Sometimes I write more than one post a day. I think my record for the most posts I wrote in a day was seven. Then I scheduled them throughout the week.

I will quit making your brain hurt now.

I still do write posts on the fly pretty regularly. They’re usually the shorter ones. Or the poems. Things that have to be captured in the moment or they aren’t worth telling.

I suppose that is also a great part of therapy. Revision. Redirecting your thoughts and emotions in a manner that helps you grow and become the kind of person you want to be. I’m getting there. I have a great deal of revisions to do, and often it feels overwhelming. It’s not like writing a revision. You can just hit the delete button and rewrite it. You have to build from the framework of what made you that way, and change it. You have to leave the comfortable path behind you and follow a new one. It’s much more terrifying to think of it in that perspective, but anything worth having must be somewhat terrifying. At least in my experience it has been. I don’t know about anyone else. Maybe something’s come much more easily to some than others. I can only speak for myself.

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A Little Ray of Sunshine in the Rain…

After a long day at work, coming home in cold wet rain, and ready to climb into bed and sleep forever, I came home to a little envelope with my name on it. Within was held a little card asking a very important question…

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I have never been a bridesmaid before. I don’t know what it will entail and I can’t say I will be a good one, but I am so honored that my future sister-in-law cares enough about me being in her wedding. I can’t help but also feel a little heartache of happiness. I have wanted a little sister all my life. Now I get one.

Need More Poetry

A friend of mine once told me how she was ridiculed for having a blog of poetry by some dumb broad whom I often imagine to be blond for some reason or another. Said person had too her something to the effect of “there is enough poetry in the world” and then proceeded to burn a Shel Silverstine book that threw me into a blind rage….

Okay she didn’t burn a Shel Silverstine book, but if she had it would have thrown me into a blind rage and nothing could have saved her from me had I even been there.

I tend to be on the opposite side of that argument. There isn’t enough poetry in the world. Not enough people put raw emotion and deep thought into simple verse. They keep things too wordy. Too complicated. They write paragraph upon paragraph about their desires and complaints. But who in the world can simplify a desire to a few stanzas and touch the human spirit as much as a whole book of words? Few. Very few.

Some people, only need a page to tell their life story. Others only need a single word.

I even appreciate bad poetry. The kind that stays too literal and analytical. The kind where the verses have no flow and behave like broken up sentences where you hit the enter button enough times to make it look like stanzas. I love that people see a need for poetry, and try so hard to make it, because it gives me hope that it will not die anytime soon. It gives me a fresh perspective on how, even the literal thinker without much talent for verse, actually sees the deep need for something that seems as tedious as writing poetry must seem.

As for alleged book burning blonds, they must be the ones who tried to write poetry and failed, and some other book burning blond destroyed their dream of writing poetry. So now they’re a hater….and that is very sad.

Vitamins

I had forgotten how good it felt to take my vitamins. I actually felt like a human being again. My blood sugars were normal for at least one day. Only one low in the afternoon after hauling a bunch of boxes to and from the back, as we set up new inventory. I felt good. Emotionally and physically for once. A little tired, but that was better than exhausted.

I hadn’t taken a vitamin in well over a year. I took them fairly regularly in college, but since then they had been thrown into boxes and put in the basement. Besides, I found myself forgetting to take them more often than not, so I really wasn’t feeling like they were helping. But now I wondered if I could make it part of my morning routine. I pulled them out two nights ago, threw out the expired ones, and yesterday I bought replacements for them.

I forgot mostly how good St. Johns Wort was for me. After my last bought with antidepressants I had given the herbal vitamin up so they wouldn’t interfere with the new meds. I felt like I needed something stronger at the time, and no doubt I did, but those were the worst. They didn’t make my stomach bleed or anything like I had feared, but losing 20lb in a week isn’t normal for anyone. It hurt to eat. It was uncomfortable to sleep. After about 5 months I had to be done. Now I’m just coming back to the more wholistic approach. Something more natural. Caffein and St. John’s Wort. Who knew that nutrition could help something as severe as depression? Maybe not cure it, but perhaps managing is a kind of cure.

I’m not a health nut, I promise. I actually take a sick amount of joy in making fun of people who are on occasion when they behave as pretentiously crunchy as one might assume granola to be. But, I do think we don’t give nature more credit for the cure. As a person with many illnesses both physically and mentally, I find alternatives that are much more natural to be much more helpful, especially since my primary issues (type one diabetes) is considered a wasting disease. Most of my issues are from lack of proper nutrition because my body doesn’t absorb the vitamins it needs to use daily. So I’m back on vitamins again. I hope it continues to help instead of giving me a false sense of security.

I wish I could take a vitamin for my spiritual life.

Another Attempt

I’m trying to read my Bible more. It is probably one of the hardest things to convince myself I need to do. I have this very natural aversion to being told I’m a sinner, as all people are. I am okay being told I’m imperfect or incomplete, but the term “sinner” feels so harsh. Read more

Hitting Walls

“I almost feel like political correctness is the new terrorism.” I blurted out. I could tell she had already written me off, so what was the point?

“Oh no honey, political correctness is just being polite.”

“No. It’s not. Being polite is being polite. Political correctness is an attempt to legislate morality and dictate it.”

She disagreed, which is fine, because it’s hard to agree with something that “everyone” thinks is okay. Political correctness says that if you have certain values…keep them to yourself. Nobody wants to hear how you feel about this issue or that. You can’t say these words on this list now because they are too taboo. You really shouldn’t even think these thoughts because they are inappropriate to certain people groups and might offend, but if you do think them, don’t talk about it, it might be a hate crime or discrimination. Every god exists. Every path is the right one. Everybody is okay with everything, unless it is against the law.

Political correctness is freedom? Then freedom has tied our hands. Telling us our principles are wrong, and opinions are all valid. Ignoring that not every opinion is relevant. Ignore truth because in this postmodernist culture there is none. “The truth is that there is no truth, and that is the truth,” mentality has only weakened the argument. To claim you have an opinion has become less crazy than claiming you know the truth.

We got onto the topic of prejudice somehow. Which I suppose makes sense when people consider it the opposition of political correctness.

“God doesn’t have prejudices. He doesn’t label us or generalize us.”

“Really? How do you figure?”

“Prejudice is wrong. God would be evil if He put us in boxes because it is wrong. People are individuals, and you cannot mass generalize individuals.”

“Really? Because “sinner” is a pretty big box. So is “sheep” and almost every other Parable metaphor. They’re all labels. Examples. Generalizations, because though we are different, we are all so very much the same. The Bible wouldn’t be so relatable to every human being on the planet if generalizations, stereotypes, and prejudices were not true. Therefore it would not be truth. Also, try telling “prejudices are wrong” to the animal kingdom. They use prejudices every day. It’s a survival skill.”

“But, people aren’t animals.”

“They aren’t? Science and animal activists certainly don’t agree with that. Also, “sheep” is an animal and God is the Shepherd. Does it bother you to be an animal? I don’t mind being considered an animal. I can certainly act like one when I pissed, I can tell you that much.”

She was getting fed up. Kept trying to change the subject. Telling me my thoughts and feelings were only opinions and couldn’t be verified as fact. “But, they can be averaged. Which is the most common quantitative measurement of human society.” I retorted. I was getting really sick of being written off for being young.

“I’m not writing you off because you are young. Besides opinions are only immunity to being told you’re wrong.” She attempted to remind me.

“But, that is just your opinion then isn’t it? Your immunity to being wrong? You kind of just thwarted your own argument with that one. Also, yes, you are writing me off. You wouldn’t have said anything if you weren’t actually, and you would be more willing to listen and probably would ask me more questions to understand my motivations if you weren’t writing me off. ”

I’m used to being written off because I’m young, and I will continue to be written off when I am old, because I am old. People will always write each other off for whatever reason they can in the name of self preservation.

“But you can’t say that…”

“Honey, I just did.”

“I got a meeting. I don’t have time for this. It was nice meeting you.”

She walked away. I was merely amused. She was passionate. Kept talking over people to keep herself from seeming less confident.She was a character. She spoke so quickly and said so much that I almost wanted to take extra breaths on her behalf. She made me tired, but I was interested. She would nearly gasp between sentences. Running her thoughts together like this was the end of the world and she had to impart every ounce of herself upon you. She had to change you.

She didn’t like me. She hit a wall, and instead of breaking it, it broke her.

I tend to do that. I burn bridges half built when I try to be real with people, because some people are delicate and cannot take criticism. They get defensive if you question them. They get upset if you correct them. They hate if you’re different than them. They refuse to put up with your questions and mess, and with her I was a bit surprised, because she seemed like the kind of person who was willing to put up with mess. She was intentionally trying to come across that way. I was wrong to believe it. She was just as much of a mess as anyone else and wasn’t giving me the vibe she could handle it. A big time visitor from Chicago who thought her life in the city made her a survivor. I survived Chicago too. It’s not that hard.

I really couldn’t blame her for her ways. I mean I could, but who was I to put blame on someone for things I too have done? At least she was trying to put her mess in order and trying to make sense of it all. Perhaps poorly, but at least she was trying. I could respect that. I was trying to do the same, but by means of change and understanding. Coming to terms with the ever flowing waters of perception and opinions and being willing to change when people were able to argue that I was wrong (because even water becomes white and confusing as it moves through the rocks). She was trying to keep her mess solid. Rigid. An attempt to make chaos look stable. Trying to make diamonds out of dust, but only managing breakable glass. Her world would shatter, but she would glue the pieces together again, trying to make it look like it did before. I used to do that. Sometimes I turn my water to ice, only to have it thaw with the heated frustration of realizing I was wrong. Or brutally broken by someone who loved me enough and saw fit to break it.

I shook my head and smiled as she walked away. “I like her.” I said to myself. “What a shame.”

Bring Us Back

Sometimes I wonder if I’m the kind of person who really should be in church. I mean, besides the strong urge to yell at everyone to go fuck themselves, I don’t have any issues with it. They do good work, even if they’re selfish about it. They certainly give back to the community even though they take so much. It must even out at some point.

I sound spiteful I know. More thank I should. I suppose it’s just part of the growing pains of being a Christian. You have to put up with other sinners who claim to love the same God, but certainly don’t act like it. I know I don’t most if the time. Since I love saying the “fuck” word so much. Since I’m so judgmental of those who I deem to be more judgmental than myself. Since I hate being in church for so many reasons.

There is oppression here. People often think that I’m being oppressed by evil forces when I say that, but I feel it mostly from the people. It’s like people don’t want outsiders to come in. They aren’t very welcoming. They’re cliques. I’ve been attending this church for about two years now, and I can count on one hand the amount of people I have spoken to and spent time with outside of church…one. One person.

I am beyond grateful for that one person, but it pains me to think of the hundreds of people who attend here whom have never even once been welcoming. It feels like oppression. Like they try to box you out. Like they encourage with the facade that you should get involved, but don’t care about you as a person, just what you can do for them. What pains me further, is the number of people who must also be new here feeling the same way. The ones who come to church inconsistently because of work, who want to find a place to belong, but can’t find anyone willing to help bring them in. If only I knew who those people are, I could get on that bandwagon of outsiders. At least we would have the fellowship we crave and perhaps find ways to welcome others in. But, I don’t know those people. I don’t know who they are. So I sit in the overflow area of church. Where it is quiet and safe, with the members of the church who are too young to listen but play quietly, the members with bright red hair and studs on their leather jackets, and the members of the church who are handicapped and don’t want to be disruptive with their convulsions and sudden outbursts.

I feel handicapped like that spiritually. Like I sit back here so as not to be disruptive to the multitude of cliques that are trying with every ounce of their being to ignore me. That is how I feel, because that is the only excuse they have to have for being this cold. They have to be trying. That must be distracting for them. I must be distracting to them.

I feel like that one person who sees the problem, but rather is seen as the problem.

These are all just feelings of course. I could be wrong. It could just be that I come across as the kind of person who is too strange to be approachable. Children and teens approach me, fluttering in and out of conversation as they do, with their desire for a nose stud like mine and seeing my doodles on my iPad. Wishing they could do the same. The elderly approach me for short periods of time, interested in understanding why I would get a nose piercing, gauges in my ears, or perceiving that I am a person that sees the world differently than they did in their day at my age. Those kind a of people don’t make friends with me though. They just talk. All on the surface. But others my age or near it? Avoid me like the plague.

I wonder if it’s a generational problem. Okay, let me rephrase: I know it is a generational problem. We don’t want others cramping our styles. We want to be unique. Few people my age even come to church, and I get a few reasons why. The judgement. The pretentiousness from themselves and others. The narcissism of our culture. The individualism of our culture, where they think a personal relationship with God is exclusive, and fellowship doesn’t matter. Church is an option. Correction in wrong doing is “judgmental” and “wrong” because the person correcting them is “not God.” Sure, they are not God. But people of my generation have been convinced that God invented political correctness and put such a focus on “God as love” that they forget the “God is justice” and justice doesn’t always look “fair” in its perfection. We don’t take time to read the Bible anymore to know the truth about who God is as He decided to reveal, because there are parts that we don’t like…and some of us made the mistake of reading the end first and it ruined it for us. Our narcissism and selfishness makes us want to make ourselves the authority on the matter. We keep trying to play God, while God keeps laughing while also in heartbreak at our foolishness.

I wonder how much it would change people at my church if they knew how I felt? If the seed was planted in their minds…that even one person might change their mind about how they interact with strangers? How they interact with people my age? Would they try to genuinely and authentically draw us in? Or would they just think it was us being selfish, and not doing enough to try to fit in? Would they think we are just lazy young adults who text too much and watch too many YouTube videos, breezing our way in a world of convenience and luxury? Or would they finally see us as the victims we are? The ones who aren’t actually able to unplug because of a society demanding we always be connected to our jobs… or risk being fired because we don’t respond quickly enough. The ones who run ragged on the overload of information trying to figure out the difference between lies and truth and suffer from the emotional fatigue and depression. The ones who have been convinced that we need to keep morality equal to political correctness. The ones who are imprisoned in the labels and boxes that other members of society have put us in. The ones where society tries to drag us down, while we keep trying to find ways to get the church to pull us back….all the while wondering where God is in all this.

I suppose this is a cry for help. Help from the church to bring us back. Somehow.

Decay

I wish nothing more
Than to run
Beyond where the street lights end
Where light cannot touch
Our naked skin in the dark
And where only the void of night
Sets free it’s darkest shadows
I want to go to where the grass grows long
Where the buildings crumble
At the feet of we sojourning strangers
We the two beings crushing the dust
Of the sky scrapers that pierced
The underbelly of the ozone
Where the smoggy air
Now gives way to hole burning
And ash lays waste
Giving new life to the plants
Overtaking the abandoned urban decay
I want our hearts to rush
Pumping muscles together
Pushing away flesh and setting free spirit
I want to let go of this tangible humanity
This dying body
For something more ethereal

I’m a Good/Bad Reader

Yes, I am guilty of committing one of the worst offenses a reader can commit. I am currently reading (about) four books. That is right, (about) four. I’m a glutton for punishment I know, and my process of reading is going so slowly that I am STILL reading books I have written about many many posts ago.

I know I have a problem. A serious problem. But the first step to overcoming the problem is admitting you have it, and I think I pretty much have that out of the way. But you see, the struggle is very real on this matter. Because as much as I want to finish books, I have a hard time doing it if I really enjoy it, or worse, if it teaches me something I really want to know, but in a reluctant and world changing way.

Currently, I have put a complete stop to reading Neil Gaiman’s “American Gods” because it is really heavy and I need to offer my complete concentration and emotional energy to it. It was a big step and decision, because the storyline is fascinating, thrilling, intellectual, and trippy as hell. Which is precisely my favorite type of book. But I had to set it down, and I intend to finish it to the utmost completion (which means starting from the beginning when the time comes and reading it cover to cover), just not until I can completely focus on it. There is so much going on to take in.

Right now that leaves me with the complete works of Robert Frost ( which will require all my emotions to read through, and more so to mark personal feelings in my journal), “Son” by Lois Lowery to finish off “The Giver” series, and “Killing the Black Body” by Dorothy Roberts, which is a fascinatingly informative work about issues and oppressions with reproductive freedom for African American females in the United States. I will exclude my desire to add “Lord Sunday” by Garth Nix to the list, seeing as I am currently in rebellion against finishing the “Keys to the Kingdom” series I began in high school, because in my mind it equates to the same kind of psychological trauma as finishing the “Harry Potter” series was. Plus, I haven’t even started reading that particular book yet, so it doesn’t count.

I also exclude “Lady of Devices” by Shelly Adina because as much as I enjoy a good steampunk adventure story, I hate it when people put their books on Amazon for free and then have 18 more in the series you have to buy for $20 a pop. That is exaggerated of course, but I just would like when the beginning is free, the whole series ought to be free as well. Just saying.

*whispers “I love free literature” to self while rocking back and forth in corner*

I also love buying books. So I now have several boxes in my basement of books I rescued from thrift store in college and a shelf now overflowing with books I have yet to read, and I realize I may own more books that I will ever have time to read in my lifetime.

I shudder at the thought.