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selva oscura
30 October 2019 @ 04:08 pm
every time something about the canada residency comes up in conversation with my parents on speakerphone, my dad asks who margaret atwood is. every time. my mother and me do our best to explain but basically end up doing conversational yard doughnuts because my mother has worked at the library for over thirty years and both of us have been reading margaret atwood for at least that same length of time. i mean, like, significant amounts of margaret atwood. i own first editions. signed copies and shit. and this experience involved her fucking reading a piece of my fucking writing, dig? it was this whole big thing. but every time i go to tell my single name-dropping go-to anecdote about that residency, my “and then this one time! at writing camp!” i can easily visualize my father’s slightly shaken head, the wide and thinking eyes, the “i may very well know exactly what i am doing here” smile. “who’s margaret atwood?” he asks, and i remember why i don’t share anecdotes about this experience as much as i possibly could and oh, dear god, could i?

the fucking hatchet story alone. the fucking hatchet story, a narrative first making me aware of its unfolding within fifteen minutes of first setting foot in the bookhouse, and by that i mean: i’m on a remote island in another country with thirteen talented writers staying in a strange rustic mansion designed by a non-architect in an established local family with a tragic history and there was a hatchet! with visible traces of blood on it! in my top dresser drawer! that story only gets weirder from there, but there are only so many people in my life who would appreciate it to the extent i need someone to appreciate the fucking hatchet story. how proud i was of that story finding me. the slowly unfolding synchronicity of how it got there and what i was writing. how i slept with it for two nights under my bed because, deadpanned to my roommate with a rough shrug and wave to the window above my bed, “we don't know.” one of these people i exuberantly texted events as they were unfolding (when i could get the signal); one of them has chronic and mutually debilitating problems with emotional availability; one of them is no longer alive. so i don't really have anyone i can verbally tell the hatchet story to, fresh, at least not in person or over the telephone. nobody. and maybe that’s okay, maybe it’s circumstances telling me what i need to do is write the fucking hatchet story down, write it in the form of new yorker fiction and submit it in kind. but i also need to get some of these stories off of my chest, possibly so i can measure immediate response to a verbal telling and determine likely points where pressure could crack the piece open, maybe finally tell me what the story is about. i could use some human interaction, immediate reactions. the pressure built up around the fucking hatchet story is intense and i don't entirely know what to do with it. so i tell that other, simpler, name-dropping anecdote, the one at a charming cafe that smelled delicious, they sold fudge, it was adorable as a placeholder for the one that starts with me finding a bloody hatchet in my dresser drawer. it is possible my father has picked up on this. is prompting me like a buddhist monk with a poking stick as i slough off into decadent thinking during sitting practice. is antagonizing me into enlightenment. kind of like what margaret atwood might have done, but i'm still processing that, and by that i mean EMDR is an option.

"who's margaret atwood?" dad wants to know, and i don't know how to begin to tell him, having told him (i think?) so many times before. so i tell him. and mom tells him. we both tell him, again. you read the the handmaid's tale, remember? it was on your nightstand for a year and a half. oh yeah, dad nods, knowing exactly what he's doing, here, you cannot tell me otherwise. that was her?

what i'm saying might be that my father might be doing this to antagonize me and, if he has, he's been doing it steadily for three years. i'm pretty sure we had the "who's margaret atwood" conversation at least three times before i even went to canada. in person, twice. i'm only starting to pick up on it now, is the thing, because along with easy facial recognition and the ability to retain, properly direct and pronounce people's names, i lose my ability to parse tonal humor under stress and the mental feedback can cause me to behave strangely. because when one is experiencing stress, a lot (maybe all) of one's sophisticated cognitive functions go offline in order to prioritize survival behaviors. survival behaviors generally do not need a nuanced understanding of tonal humor or if one's assailant has done something different with their teeth since the last time they assailed you. my issue is: i'm always a little scared that i'm about to be assaulted. by that i mean, physically assaulted. my baseline is higher than it needs to be. i think one of the reasons i am so frequently verbally assaulted goes back to my difficulties interpreting tone. if i can't interpret tone, i can't pick up on early signs that the conversation has taken a bad turn, nor can i determine how bad a turn it is, exactly, often because everything is screaming anyway. if i can't pick up on early signs, i've missed my opportunity to reroute the conversation or leave it entirely before it becomes a thing.

which, back to my father? the latter option is probably not going to happen. dad responds to rerouting. talking to dad taught me about conversational rerouting. in all our years of adult conversation, i can't recall ever once wanting to slam the front door or phone and not talk to him for a while. we have different views, but we figure it out before things get to that point. both of us respect our right to be the people we are. and a lot of that? is me. by virtue of my experience, i have developed extremely nuanced skills for navigating rather complicated social dynamics and what i mean by that is in a perfect world, i might be a solid candidate for random acts of international diplomacy. freelance available, but goddamn i'd like to really feel the legitimate security of employer-provided health insurance, yeah, like i had in my twenties, as well as the oft overlooked delight of an employer with a facility in reasonable driving distance in case my emails regarding compensation bounce or go unanswered for too long.

dad does antagonize me, though, and i'm only starting to realize the extent of it now - almost with a probably unhealthy spot of pride, because it's smart, subtle, and brilliantly infuriating. infuriating because even if that is what is happening, i don't know that i feel good about demanding it stop. because it is genius. remove the antagonism and it's utterly my style of humor. it's also helping me understand just how thoroughly my life has been shaped by the willful antagonism of men, so my feelings are decidedly mixed.
music: dark muse - silk
selva oscura
27 October 2019 @ 01:59 pm
8.12.2016 9A
dream is largely about the transition between the living and the dead and how we fall out of sync, how we perpetuate falling out of sync. i have died, or i'm in denial about having died, or i'm not exactly sure where i am. i'm naked, at the apartment that is also my parent's house. my dad and brother are there. i'm trying to communicate with them but self-conscious about my nudity. nobody is sad. only confused. i walk in and out of the room. i look at myself in the full-length mirror in my apartment hallway. i'm desperate and isolated. my brother and father are playing it down. i am moved by the beauty of my body, which looks as it did when i'm young. crying, weeping at my own loss, i walk back and forth. then a memory: it hasn't happened yet. there's a grate at my parent's house, a gateway into machinery that can be removed, allowing people to enter a transitional space not intended for human passage and enter the sea. you enter through the grate, into the wall surrounded by paneling. you transition through the guts of the house, dangerous place, sharp edges, heavy and unwieldy, and emerge in the sea to swim an incredibly dangerous circuit. everyone seems to be very casual about it, but many people have died here. it may have been how i passed. (national park? it's a rare landscape.) it's beautiful and intense, a very specific kind of high, an initiation, and i keep returning to it though i know it is risky and potentially depleting my life force.
rest of dream and three moreCollapse )
music: dark muse - shadow speak
selva oscura
26 October 2019 @ 02:03 pm
lost inside outside of myself i surrender to old names but find them lacking: in value, substance, accuracy. have i ever taken a true name?

unzipping my funeral of a drawing portfolio in the wake of deciding, as i decided to stop drawing, to stop making anything i write available to anyone else's eyes, i find grave insinuation that this earlier decision, this decision to stop drawing, may not have been in my best interests.

among my old work, what must have been my last project: an image of a woman with her exposed back to the viewer, violet-eyed glance thrown over her shoulder indifferent and luring, a back abundant with tattooed flowers emerging into the unlikely reality of her cascading black hair.


i used an image of siouxsie sioux from the batman returns vehicle "face to face," repeated to a dull thud on JBTV two years earlier, the summer i turned seventeen. i gifted her with miles of those black silken tresses i longed for myself, curtains and concealment. mystery. privacy, that holy grail of necessity turned privilege. the flowers told a story about ophelia, my ophelia, that ophelia i almost became a few months before i drew this image, perhaps the last project of its kind in my lived experience. she is ophelia transformed:

she is my ophelia. she has taken possession of her tragedy and now broadcasts it out into the world. she has survived her myriad abandonments, including her own, or she has not, but now re-emerges from her watery chrysalis in a new form. she's a butterfly, she's my faery queen: found at last, forgotten in my abandoned craft, beckoning me back, toward what i could not say.

i do not remember this project. i do not remember it at all. i remember everything significant i have ever created in my notable crafts, or at least i thought i did. i do not remember this image and this terrifies me. the drawing had been mounted and matted, as though in preparation for a show. let me repeat that: one of my only drawings shown publicly, and not only do i not remember it being shown, i don't even remember drawing it?

i stared at it, into it, through it for half an hour that day i unzipped my funeral of a drawing portfolio. i gazed into her violet eye. i could only retrieve the shape of a memory, the place where a memory could be. i remember relating to this drawing, perhaps, the abstract idea of it. trying to figure out what to do with it. trying to make myself want to hang it on a wall somewhere i could see it, acknowledge it, take pride in my work. why wouldn't i have wanted to take pride in this work? what alienated me from some minor indulgence of pride in an era where i was drowning in drama and shame? but trying to move any closer than that froze me up, resonated through my entire body with the dull thud of no. do not enter. here there be dragons, that's all i could find.

well, shit.

what happened? i remember words from my most recent post here, drawing suddenly made me feel horrible and i couldn't explain why and the situation was making me hate everything and they suddenly take on a new and disturbing context. what happened? did i stop drawing because i wanted to reroute those resources toward another craft or was i robbed of it by some event so traumatic i needed to abandon every facet of my life potentially related to it?

why did i stop drawing? i always figured it was a consolidation of factors and failures, a slow erosion, maybe a putting away of childish things. but that doesn't sound like me: i might occasionally writhe and anguish under the weight of my more unreasonable expectations, but in the end, i'm not about to give up a primary form of expression to anything less than



what if it was

will i ever know?
selva oscura
confession: i threw all my journals in the garbage. further details of this episode, and oh, dog, was it ever an episode, redacted. the attention just encourages her. of course i retrieved them, but only to put them in a box, tape the box shut and hide it from further menace as best i could.

the distance between here and the storage locker might serve as a decent self-injury buffer, which is probably what this is about. i remember wrapping a few of my most important notebooks in black plastic and stowing them under the passenger seat of my father's car that first time i kept catching myself in the middle of self-harm rituals: i couldn't be trusted alone with objects i valued. including my body, but that's a whole other story. it got better, my ankle healed up real nice, and my (undisturbed) notebooks got a lovely two-week tour of the illinois/wisconsin borderlands. all in all, not the worst outcome for me on the warpath with myself. i didn't even have to buy a pregnancy test!

as the trauma shifts, even as i'm starting to recover resources, i'm learning that a great deal of my younger "coping" methods were actually rationalization, enabling, and stalls. using resources i could have been using to get better to simply (barely) function. now, i not only get to deal with the original material (frequently WITH INTEREST), but self-loathing about my previous handling of these experiences. it is fucking awe inspiring how much responsibility i've been conditioned assume in abuse dynamics. the types of responsibility, the level to which i take it, my stalwart commitment to absorbing other people's shame. invariably, i'm tempering myself for more abuse. it's bad enough when it's an HR asshole i will likely/hopefully never see again. when it's a relative?

for the record, i would almost certainly not put my journals in the garbage for real. even doing it, i thought: why am i doing this? i am creating a great deal of work, most of it of the type i can't spare bandwidth toward right now. even doing it, i anticipated they'll be back on the shelf by the end of the week. i suspect this behavior was, indeed, a dive for attention: from my incoherent, constantly wailing, terrified and terrifying rape victim brain. damn, does she want my attention.

nobody else's, though. she is utterly frozen through with terror by the concept of "the wrong people" even knowing she exists.

(yeah and she longs desperately for acknowledgement. C-PTSD is FUN.)

i would almost certainly not put my journals in the garbage for real: however, this and other recent events might be opening me to the possibility of being silenced.

something similar happened with regard to drawing my first year of college. because i am fundamentally a non-linear storyteller, i'd invested in this very specific type of narrative drawing for several years, but i think i was making it up as i went along. it definitely wasn't an established path in the visual arts and i wasn't confident enough in my own abilities to establish such a path independently. i wanted to make photorealistic pencil copies of pre-existing images, particularly from media i loved. i wanted to examine the line between forgery and independent creative work. i wanted to draw surrealistic photo montages with humble materials as an example of the incredible amount of work neurodivergent poor kids are willing to put in creative solutions to longing for the unattainable. in part, i started drawing like that because i had no reliable means of obtaining official posters of my favorite bands. i wanted to examine the taboo of copyright, why we let corporations emotionally torture post-adolescent artist who've fallen in love with imagery they are forbidden from engaging with in developmentally beneficial ways. it's the kind of project people with orating skills and/or networking privilege could probably secure outside funding for, maybe even leverage as an asset to get a foothold in the marketplace or more and better schooling; because i didn't have sufficient pre-existing support, it ended up just me being a copycat, an unoriginal showoff from the wrong side of the tracks. nobody had ever talked to me about my creative work so i had no idea how to talk about it, how to pitch it, how to make a living with it. i didn't understand that was the problem. instead it was: drawing suddenly made me feel horrible and i couldn't explain why and the situation was making me hate everything. even though i didn't follow through destroying the work involved, it evolved into the moment i stopped pursuing that craft. i didn't have the resources for it any longer. i made my choice. i just didn't understand and then wouldn't speak that truth for many years. writing is more complicated than that, and it isn't.

i don't know that i honestly believe anyone is reading.

i don't know that i honestly believe anyone could be invested.

i don't know how i feel about belief, given the violence i've seen administered in its service.

whatever the case, i can't think in this roaring vacuum. is it worth it? it's too many resources for too many lost friendships. too many people only want to prove they're better than me. that they have been through more than me. that they are more deserving of my abilities. i mean, fine. it ain't my fault that you are in your life and i am in mine. that's a tiresome drama that ends the same way every time: with everyone involved hating themselves that much more. the reason i started writing was because if i didn't, i'd die. i was dying alone in a windowless room. so: i saved my life with writing. i devoted resources to my craft. i made sacrifices for it. i worked and worked and worked and worked. if you want to develop a craft, develop a craft. develop your own craft, i mean. don't do it because you want to prove you're better at it than everyone else or even one specific person, because that is doomed to fail, even if it does earn you money and fame. decide you need to do it. make sacrifices. suffer and fail. take risks. lose friends. work and work and work and work. acknowledge and release your entitlement issues around success and other people's investment in your work, you know, like i started doing when i was eleven, seize your agency and write. save your own life from envy and unacknowledged shame.

or don't. it's not really my business. either way, stop punishing folks who are doing what you want to do because you are deciding to do something else.

how's that for not compulsively absorbing other people's shame? new twist on an old story: cinderella fights back. of course, she's doing it by letting go of the one tool she could have used to improve her circumstances, so there you have it. silencing. it does that!

maybe if i stop writing the real estate could be rezoned for vaguely profitable ventures. probably not, though. my boyfriend wants more than simply getting by. as much as i value that, as much guilt as i feel for not being able to help him more in that endeavor, the bitter truth remains that simply getting by has become my apparently unattainable dream.
selva oscura
30 September 2019 @ 01:43 pm

prompt: "webinar." response:

time to put everything i own in the microwave and yell embarrassing things at my children about their puberty management strategies (or lack thereof)
interferring technological complications
selva oscura
21 September 2019 @ 02:44 pm
12-8-2015 10A
i was in my first term at a junior college and feeling lonely. there was a punk girl, she'd been the singer in a band. her hair was black and spiky, her skin very pale; she looked like a mix of siouxsie sioux and gaimen's death. there was a very transitional quality to the time and the spaces. nothing exactly was here nor there. i'd walk around the gymnasium which might have been at my old high school; i'd try to go into my old locker and couldn't remember the combination. the locker opened anyway, and it was empty, scraped out, scratches and old adhesive on the green-enameled metal.

i wanted to dye my hair red - believed authorities at school wouldn't approve, force me to dye it back. saw one of the instructors with red hair growing out and felt angry about the hypocrisy.

the punk woman knew a lot about music. i'd almost compulsively fallen into a mode where i was trying to get closer to her, but it was hopeless. she didn't like me. we kept ending up around each other, though, so i was self-conscious and uncomfortable about my strange attraction to her. she was an artist, extremely creative, she had a visual journal everybody was passing around and it was my turn to look at it. the journal was, also, somehow mine, the visual journal i have now. i was trying to figure out a private moment so i could flip to the back most, still empty pages and jot down the name of a band she liked that i wanted to explore more in light pencil so it wouldn't damage any of her/my work. for some reason i felt anxious about doing this in front of anyone, so i kept trying to hide.

there was a part of the campus that looked like a dive-y version of the alley and it was apparently a transitional space near her apartment. she was having a band play there, i think? the band whose name i was focused on getting - vicarious varshan*? - had a very distinct, 80's era xerox friendly logo with an abstraction of a woman's face. she looked like the punk woman. her apartment was like the dive-y green room area of a concert venue, torn wallpaper and curb-snagged vintage furniture from the 1930's. i was worried about being there at all because she did not like me and i felt like i was messing up the vibe she wanted, but i really wanted to see the band.

over the course of the show it became apparent that she was pregnant. surprising, in fact, was that nobody had noticed this yet: she was in her third trimester. a couple other people - it seemed like they were on good terms with her - were working on a concert poster in the living area. the punk woman laughed and showed the other women how if she leaned forward a little you could see her son pressing his form into her belly. everybody laughed and went back to their work - except me. there wasn't a place for me here, even though it had always been my apartment as well. i gave up, feeling sad, and retreated to another part of the space, where there was an old reclaimed 4-poster bed surrounded by ripped up concert and gallery show posters on the walls. i sat on the bed, feeling anxious and guilty about writing the band name in her book, anxious about sitting on her bed, and tired of feeling guilty and anxious about such things. i had my shoes off and was wearing cheap jeans and an old, ratty t-shirt. she came in and found me sitting on the bed and i thought i'd better get out of the space but then found i was sick of worrying about impressing her and stayed, just sitting.

she looked at my feet. "your feet are like wolves," she told me. i looked at them, too.

"there is a canine quality about them," i responded.

there was an awkward silence. "i like how when you showed us your son," i said, "i like how his hands were forward, like he was sending energy to the band. play on, play on."

she didn't really respond but sat there, staring at me strangely. i felt weird, inadequate, anxious, guilty. finally, she said, "could we please be friends?"

*varshan: indian boy’s name, “falling of rain” – band name could be interpreted “watching the rain fall through the eyes of another”
music: orbiteer - transcend
selva oscura
21 September 2019 @ 11:47 am

apparently i did this working right before we found the carbon monoxide leak. wish i could remember what it was about. rosebuds, pink candle dressed in black tea dust, bead necklace: might be recovery? i've been negotiating something a little like trauma around how bad the CO stuff got. for instance: finding pictures on my phone documenting spellcraft i don't remember doing. that's some compromised cognition shit right there. or it's the magic protecting itself. maybe it helped us find the leak.

i've decided the original british prisoner ought to be renamed man doing strange things purposefully.
music: all the kiln
selva oscura
13 September 2019 @ 03:06 pm

it's a cyst. that and everything was absolutely fine. the amazing nurse was in fact there, did in fact explain everything, didn't give me a hug but heard me out - and believed me - about a bad experience i had at another clinic back in march. the first time i've ever reported (even sort of, because this was triage, not an official report) anything in that category, in fact. so. usually i just freeze up and shut down, you know, like i did in march.

on that front, i've started EMDR with my therapist. two sessions so far, and though i can't claim to have been set aflame with healing i've been increasingly able to do something i've never been able to do in memory: differentiate threat levels in a meaningful way. as long as i can remember, my reaction to any stressor felt like driving a car on a collapsing mountain rode when the brakes go out and the car is on fire. job interview? the car is on fire. lost in an unfamiliar neighborhood? the road is collapsing. someone staring at me on the subway? the brakes are out. my response to the potential for danger is my response to full tilt catastrophe. i'm quite imaginative and past experience has made me pretty much a professional horrible scenario builder, so especially over the course of the last ten or so years, if i'm not scared about something obvious i'm scared of something that might be about to happen.

on balance: i am perpetually at least kind of afraid. i'm always tensed. i'm always exhausted from being tensed. i don't sleep, i no longer drive, i struggle to trust people, i can't will myself into the present moment or witness past experience in a nourishing way. i don't know what i want. i'm always waiting for the next fucking horrible thing to happen and, yeah. welcome to humanity. there is always going to be a next fucking horrible thing, but there's also meaningful human connection and solace in nature and art and magic and laughter and just regular, enjoyable experiences of the world. at least that's what other people report. maybe i'll be able to get there myself, someday. in the meantime, EMDR, mindfulness practice and CBT. maybe it's starting to get better.

after my appointment wednesday, i started writing an essay about where i am right now. it feels significant. like, if i can keep my shit together long enough to get it written, it might be a breakthrough piece for me. like maybe, when it is finished, i'll start the submission process with what feels like a terrifying overshoot. like maybe it's time for me to stand down this terror of publishing my work.
music: tor lundvall - quiet room
selva oscura
07 September 2019 @ 01:34 pm
eighties cinema led me to believe adult life would involve a lot more evocatively lit sexual intercourse in front of plate glass windows overlooking city skylines at night.
selva oscura
06 September 2019 @ 12:51 am
were self-sabotage a career path, i'd be a fucking six-figure CEO.
selva oscura
02 September 2019 @ 02:24 pm
i think there are a lot of people who don’t understand agency the way i do.

culturally, it’s often conflated with self-sufficiency; in my opinion (this is all my opinion) a deadly mistake. self-sufficiency is a deadly mistake, if not for the individual who mistakenly believe themselves to have achieved it, then for the network of exploited individuals and resources abandoned unacknowledged in their wake. self-sufficiency is the big american entitlement, yet more toxic detritus of manifest destiny, that attractive delusion feeding into many of our most destructive behaviors: isolating and estranging us to the extent of normalizing homelessness.

agency is the rate of exchange for an ever decreasing percentage of the populous grinding planetary resources to worse than nothing as a means of maintaining their illusion of self-sufficiency.

that’s right. you heard me. i am positing that the illusion of self-sufficiency strips us of agency. not just one side or the other of the privilege divide. it’s both sides and the infinity of shades in the middle. everyone and everything is impacted by this destructive illusion. we’re all in this together, kids: realization no. 1 of claiming agency for yourself.

among the privileged, the way the mechanism works is: you have things that others do not. with the things that you have, you are able to get more things. material things, sure, but also immaterial ones, matters seemingly assumed among those fortunate enough to enjoy them:

  • social acceptance
  • a reasonable path to sufficient employment
  • privacy
  • access to profitable network connections
  • praise and acknowledgement
  • upward mobility in the job market
  • the ability to move through public spaces without suspicion
  • non-judgmental assistance from healthcare providers
  • sufficient access to healthcare
  • respect in the workplace
  • employment security
  • effort resulting in some degree of intended achievement, not punishment

  • one does not want to lose those things they have, of course they don’t! so they refuse to investigate why such intangibles are so easily obtained; in fact, many will become confused and even outraged at the suggestion that they have access to intangibles others do not. this is a defense mechanism.

    not investigating the roots of privilege means conformity. plugging in to the system. not thinking too hard. not questioning very much. not taking responsibility or even acknowledging the potential for one’s environmental, economic, social, or emotional impacts. an individual benefiting from multiple privileges denying they have privilege, that is a core demonstration of someone who has not developed agency.

    because: agency means thinking. agency means questioning. agency means not conforming.

    privilege still strips the not-privileged of agency, though not because they’re being placated by a welfare state. like anyone silenced by systemic trauma for more than four decades could tell you: the not-privileged are trapped in the margins of the privileged’s fearful drama around losing their privileges. any privilege, even, especially those they angrily insist are not real privileges. and, yeah.

    it shouldn’t be a privilege to walk past law enforcement without being stopped, questioned, and beaten to death for no reason.

    it shouldn’t be a privilege to be listened to, believed and served in a timely manner at an emergency care facility.

    it shouldn’t be a privilege to hold hands with your spouse at the park.

    but it is. because of systemic oppression, some people get those things. others do not. erasing the problem will not solve it.

    i wrote this over several months back in the winter as a component of art magic and got stuck at the end of the following passageCollapse )
    mood: happy labor day
    music: celer - circling and taunting
    selva oscura
    27 August 2019 @ 04:08 pm

    from this moment forward i shall be known as muffy flip germane
    selva oscura
    27 August 2019 @ 01:36 am
    so that's what it feels like to detect a breast lump with my fingers.

    day after my birthday, in fact. any wonder i increasingly dread my birthday? any wonder many of my long-time friends avoid me? i'm such an avalanche. a monsoon of misfortune. better stay away. you might get caught.

    i think my brain stalled. i felt the lump, i felt the lump, understood what i was feeling, jerked my hand away and stopped. stopped cold. stood there, staring, strange numbness at the back of my head. speechless. shallow breathing. panting, slightly. trying to trigger a reboot. trying to trigger a reboot. trying to trigger a reboot.

    probably it's nothing. i'm susceptible to cysts. i'm cystceptible! probably it's nothing. these things tend to crop up, sometimes overnight, at specific hormonal intervals. i am at one of those intervals. cysts are likely triggered by stress, isn't everything? understatement: i've been under a lot of stress. probably it's nothing. let's pretend it's probably nothing.


    anyone needs me i will be in the empty fucking bathtub with all my fucking clothes on screaming over and over again into my fucking fist because we just fucking did this and i cannot fucking do it again but i have to do it fucking again because this is my fucking life and i have HEIGHTENED FUCKING RISK FACTORS on top of my ELEVATED FUCKING RISK FACTORS it's quite the tiered wedding cake of risk and seriously? seriously? again? already, again?

    waiting for a response from the clinic portal. i have my annual appointment with the radioactive boob crusher in a couple weeks anyway, so i don't know. maybe that amazing nurse is still there and she will explain everything and then give me a hug. i am currently running short on hugs. i am currently stuck at what if it's not nothing. i am currently stuck

    mood: FML
    selva oscura
    21 August 2019 @ 11:19 pm

    once upon a time i had answers
    selva oscura
    18 August 2019 @ 05:25 pm

    what does it mean
    selva oscura
    09 August 2019 @ 07:37 pm

    no wait did i remember to subtract for clothes because i was wearing clothes a couple pounds worth probably. i'm pretty sure. i think.

    so it might not have been three entire pounds. is that honestly my take away, here? that my big achievement of the moment is i had a few gulps of water before i stepped on the scale? because that is having more of an emotionally taxing effect, actually.

    maybe it's more that: clothes or no clothes, for the first time in months i got on a scale and the numbers went slightly higher than they've been going instead of concerningly lower. i think this might be what the overculture calls a "win."
    selva oscura
    08 August 2019 @ 06:10 pm
    my partner got a "huh, no one's ever asked me that before."

    it was a question about ventilation in our (hopefully!) new space.

    so that's, what, fifty points in the RECENTLY TRAUMATIZED CEREBRAL INTROVERT category? quite a distance to go from the cool two thousand i scored the year of my indoctrination to the thyroid cancer life(1), but impressive for someone so well integrated with the creative professional workforce. living with me has introduced him to so many things!

    (1) i swear to god, two dozen related consultations, most of them i didn't even need to undress or go into an exam table hypertension episode(2) over! i never saw so many doctor's offices. it wasn't very fun. that, by the way, is an official point on my healthcare privilege checklist: "how many significant doctors appointments have you NOT needed to undress for?" those are the hard ones, the consultations. hard in a different way than clinicians not hearing me say "I NEED TO NOT BE IN A ROOM WITH STIRRUPS" through gritted teeth while compulsively grinding the nail of my index finger into the flesh of my thumb because they are holding me prisoner in this place of misery and reproach(3) until i give them a better blood pressure reading. that's pretty damn hard, so you are aware.(4)
    (2) "white coat syndrome" my ass. IT'S THE EXAM TABLE. IT HAS ALWAYS BEEN THE EXAM TABLE. I CALL IT "EXAM TABLE DISEASE," but "WITHIN RANGE OF ANTICIPATED RESPONSES FOR PATIENTS WITH POST-TRAUMATIC STRESS DISORDER" could work if you're allowing for how different people with different experiences have different triggers and different reactions to those triggers. it's not always a lab coat. it's not always the exam table. it's not always hypertension and self-injury. sometimes it's one but not the other. sometimes it's both and more but you don't even pick up on symptoms until you're in your forties and your body gives way with the strain of letting the matter go unaddressed for so long. there is a lot we can't know. there's a lot we haven't figured out, yet. i try to keep that in mind, if only because of the times i've been hurt by people not demonstrating comprehension of this principle. we do not all always have the same tools and circumstances. your cakewalk could just as easily be my funeral. you know, because it turns out one of the unintended impacts of a prescription i'm on makes me deathly allergic to cake.
    (3) acceptable alternative: "the house of disquieting activities"
    (4) also, addressed in another part of the list!
    music: karma moffett - golden bowls of compassion
    selva oscura
    06 August 2019 @ 06:17 pm
    it is thundering it's been thundering i was standing by a window i was watching out the window as the thunder builds into itself rumbling, grumbling, but it'll probably pass us it usually passes us, as often as not a storm passes us by. a rumble crested, the wind rose and as though tipped into spilling at nature's disruption a dozen three dozen a hundred maybe blackbirds flooded out from the big tree across the street, clumsy and scuttling at first, like black salt or startled blackbirds scattering in different directions then all at once clutched up in a gather, turned, mysteriously choreographed into accord, into a single brushstroke. i watched, not sure how to articulate the way this tiny moment seized my perception. i stood there, inarticulate, as the birds disappeared from view.
    music: storm
    selva oscura
    01 August 2019 @ 05:24 pm
    just screamed "MERCURY TURNED DIRECT YESTERDAY" at the running toilet.

    so that's how today is going.
    selva oscura
    sixteen minutes left until the shitty day.

    in other news: this is absolutely a thing i regularly do in language processing. it's why i've retired certain words and phrases. 'cosmo' is the dog her mother just adopted.

    it is not a joy to HTML on a smartphone.