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Tequila on Thursday Morning

Last Thursday, May 18th, I sat at my desk at 10 am and took two shots of tequila.*
One for Chris Cornell’s death.
And one for his life.

The life that came through that amazing voice.

::: ::: ::: :::

I haven’t said anything yet, because my grief is not over. Barely begun, honestly. The 3-day emotional cycle of social media is not enough for this death, for me.

Chris Cornell was someone I chose to listen to, a few years after the biggest rush of grunge. I bought Temple of the Dog as one of my 10 CD selections with BMG (only a penny, do you remember that?). It wasn’t a case of being caught up in the music of my generation, it felt more intentional than that. It was an adult purchase, inside of my budding adult sense of myself.

He was important because of his talent, because of his emotions and how much he loved Andrew Wood, because of how his beautiful voice conveyed all of it. But also, for me, because his voice and music fed the seeds of my self.

::: ::: ::: :::

Because I am from Seattle, I have a lot of friends back there, and with Chris Cornell being a son of that city, there were lots of memories.

A former roommate talked about taking a Chem class with Soundgarden’s bassist, Hiro Yamamoto at Western Washington University (my alma mater. I remember when he came back from class to tell us what had happened, how it had been discovered. Great story, not gonna tell you; it’s his business).

Another friend, who I knew had worked for the King County Coroner’s office (but didn’t put two and two together until she shared), talked about being part of the team that catalogued and packed up Layne Stayley’s remains when he was found in 2002 (15 years ago, my god). Another voice that can never be duplicated, lost to drugs. (“So many sharps,” my friend said, “so many.”)

And people who had served Chris Cornell around town. Or seen him in the early years. There was a comedy show in Seattle in the 1990s called “Almost Live” where Billy Nye got his start. Soundgarden was part of “The Lame List” piece once. (See also: ‘High Five-n’ White Guys’ and ‘Chihuly and Jones’ – INFJ’s have a terrible sense of humor.)

Who had not seen him in concert once or twelve times? When Lollapalooza was still a mud fest in what was the backwater of Enumclaw, WA. (For a joke we call it ‘Enum-scratch.’) I listened to each song as people posted their favorites and felt my own connections. I read some reports and some posts (this one is my favorite) about what his music meant. And I thought about why I had included him as one of the first members of the ‘Shiva’ board on Pinterest (which seems a ridiculous thing to say as a Gen-Xer: Pinterest). He embodied the full sense of masculinity to me. He was not afraid of himself. He had his demons, to be sure. But he explored so much of life, of himself- and made beauty from it. I deeply admire that.

I had last seen him when he came to Providence on his solo tour. He was on stage simply to have a good time with music. The kid who sat next to me was not born before 1996, and I took umbrage with his youth, but not with his taste in music. Chris Cornell as a god of both our youths. And there he was, taking requests, also denying requests, and just messing with music until it sounded good to him. He left the stage as a warped chord echoed so loud it hurt. It made your head buzz in the way you knew you would not be able to speak in a normal tone of voice until the next morning.

::: ::: ::: :::

But now, at 42 and with a master’s degree in mental health, one thing in particular stays with me: mid-life masculine depression. Yes, Chris Cornell dealt with depression and anxiety either due to or related to his drug use. But so many men deal with undiagnosed depression at this age. At the very least, it deadens them and kills their relationships, and sometimes their work.

I work with many women whose male partners suffer from depression (which has different symptoms than female depression). Male-specific symptoms of depression include physical ailments, anger, and reckless behavior. Men tend to turn their depression outwards, while women turn it inwards. And, especially for men, treating depression makes them feel inadequate. So they don’t treat it…and their relationships falter or they lose their job…and they feel inadequate so they don’t treat… You see where this goes.

There are a variety of reasons that depression happens in men. We all have inside of us the capacity to have every mental health disorder there is in the book. But the silence of it is what makes it so dangerous for men. As my friend, Jenifer said, “Suicide was stalking him (Chris Cornell) and we couldn’t help. How could we have known suicide was stalking him?” Only if he told us.

And the same is true for those around you. If you suspect you are (or your partner is) depressed, please seek help.There are lots of treatment options, many of which are not pharmaceutical (if that bothers you).

Male mid-life depression is a thing.
Male depression is a thing.
And you can have treatment and support.

The music of your life is deeply valuable to someone. Many more ‘someones’ than you suspect, probably. Your fans want you to live, just as we wish Chris Cornell could have.

::: ::: ::: :::

I think there is more to say about Chris Cornell’s death, but it’s not yet formed. I’ll share it when the time is right. And if you’re mourning- maybe it’s finally time for that trip to Seattle. Here’s my map. Visit ‘A Sound Garden,’ will ya?

Blessed be, Chris Cornell. Rest in peace.

 

*I’m not given to drinking much. I like a little wine sometimes, and some champagne on New Year’s Day. But Thursday morning I needed the burning gold of tequila running down my throat in the same way the hot tears ran down my cheeks.

 

 

0

The Sensuality of War.

I first wanted to write, “There is none.” and leave the post at that. But then I began to think about it.

There is a sensuality to war.

But it’s not what you think it is.

The sensuality of war is simply to be alive.
To be alive and attain anything approximating ‘normal’ again.

Let’s talk about the sensuality of war, since it seems to be so fresh in our national consciousness.

::: ::: ::: :::

First let me tell you about the smell of rotting flesh.

When you are at war, you will smell this.
Whether it is from an IED wound gone wrong or the leftovers of a nuclear bomb.

I have smelled rotting flesh. I worked in a nursing home through college.
Bed wounds and surgeries that don’t heal.
And the flesh rots, even when there’s been good care.

And once you smell rotting flesh, you will feel so grateful for the smell of nothing.
For the smell of air.
Strangely, even the smell of an outhouse full of shit is an improvement over rotting flesh.

To be alive and smell nothing- that is the sensuality of war.

::: ::: ::: :::

The sensuality of war is a good nights rest and the miracle of how that feels.

The memories, the sounds with no pictures, the triggers- they come with war.
And to be free of them is the most sensual thing in the world.
Ask a veteran with PTSD.

To sleep well and deeply is the sensuality of war.

 

[I do not know the artist who took this picture. If you know, please
inform me so I can offer the correct attributions. ]

 

The sensuality of war is holding a human being you love and feeling their warmth.

There is no end of cold inside war.
The cold of the physical body.
The cold of MREs.
The cold of distance.
The way the heart must numb itself to make it through.

And then, to hold someone you love, who loves you, that is the most alive thing.
Whether it is spouse or comrade or animal.
The feeling of ‘normal’ inside someone’s arms; that is the sensuality of war.

::: ::: ::: :::

The sensuality of war is to sit in a chair, in a normal place- a house, a restaurant- and feel calm.

To not remember the nights you slept against cold armor.
To not worry there is someone behind you (to not hear or imagine them there).

To feel your body settle and relax and know it can remain that way for some period.
To laugh inside that chair.

Breathing in a relaxed rhythm is the sensuality of war.

::: ::: ::: :::

War is awful and ugly and should be avoided at all costs. Always. In this day and age we have more than enough tools to keep ourselves from war.

I understand the allure of it all. I have been in emotional wars where my victory was certain – and that felt so delicious. Power is delicious.

But the power of war is the Buddhists hungry ghost; it has a never-ending stomach. It can never be filled- until the last opponent is dead. And then what is left? Nothing but the stench of rotting flesh.

War is sensual- it can make us feel very alive. But I think it is a backward kind of sensuality- where we dig ourselves into a hole and only feel alive again when we claw our way back to baseline. Maybe that’s the point of war- to remind ourselves how wretched the hole is, how good ‘baseline’ can feel. But we all know: war is almost never worth it.

Perhaps instead of enduring the sensuality of war, we could try something new: to practice the maturity of staying at baseline and loving it exactly as it is, not as something ‘better’ in contrast to a disaster.

 

 

0

Energetic connections are a thing.

People, I think I’m in love.

ThatGuy, who I have been dealing with from the Sex Surge for years, is back in my life.

Let that sink in for a minute.

 

Okay, not really. Just kidding! [Just so we’re clear: hell  no. not him. not ever.] I know, I gave some of you a heart attack. But no, it’s quite the opposite. He’s gone.          

Well, he’s mostly gone. Dude has been stalking me on social media for the last 18 months and has never gone more than 3 days without letting me know he’s there (we screen capture for data points). His girlfriend (or fiancee, or babymama…I’ve never had a good nickname for her. Lately I think ‘Miss Havisham’ or ‘RingWraith’ might be better descriptors) has gone for an entire week without bothering me, but not him. I’ve always wondered, for someone who hates me, why he can never tear himself away. Leave your psychological theories in the comments section!

Anyway, the thing is, he and I had a weird telepathic connection. Our energies were connected, maybe our souls. Or maybe it was that we exchanged energy- I can’t really say what it looked like in the quantum world. But in this world, I could feel him, his body, his emotions. I could hear him, the ideas and perspectives in his head. And I could sometimes see him- or see from his perspective.

And when you’re trying to let go of someone, having that shit happen is a real pain in the energetic ass. It was like trying to walk (or run) away and constantly being pulled back by spider web strands. I worked for fucking y-e-a-r-s to let that stuff go and shut off the connection. I conducted funerals. I cut cords (big, thick cords) in real life ceremonies, hoping the energy would translate into the spiritual level. I let go. I learned lessons. I called on the goddesses. I passed goddamn tests. I did every-fucking-thing I could think of to make the connection stop. (Including a handful of emails to ThatGuy to tell him to fuck off- because he knew what was happening and sometimes worked it on purpose. And yes, that’s a karmic dick move. Although I’m not sure I believe in karma. But anyway…).

But now! Now I can only see things. And it’s so easy to ignore symbols– it’s something I can turn off. When I heard, felt, or saw things in the past, there were pressed upon me. It was as if I was forced to tune in and listen. I could not get away from the information. But as of last Monday, it’s all shifted and I feel so. fucking. fine.

Last Monday (10 Apr) I know he betrayed a protector to keep his safety (but haven’t we all done that?). He did it, he felt it; and I felt it, too. And after that, it’s just…pppphhhttt! Gone!

I could see that twice last week he hated his life enough to feel like crying. And I could see that his girlfriend’s energy was a freaking mess on Thursday last- all kinds of energy, all over the place. But those were things I saw– and I am finding it quite easy to ignore such things.

There was one thing I felt, though. Yesterday, around 10:15 am, I had the distinct feeling that he was trying to kiss my neck and have sex with me- or rather, as a fantasy or an energy; he was thinking of me while he was getting it on. Was he alone, having a little fantasy time? Was he with the babymama? Was he with someone else? We’ll never know. But he was down for a good time, I can tell you that. (Which is also kinda weird considering Venus turned direct on Saturday. Poor dude.)

But the last week has been heaven compared to the last few years.

I catch myself laughing joyfully from deep in my chest. It hasn’t felt like bubbles for years.

The new single from Alt-J, which I can’t even find a link for, but which I heard on the radio tonight and it felt almost like the ripple of delight and anticipation you get from early-relationship sex with a new lover. (almost.) It was so good. And I could feel it, all by itself.

My head is clear and it feels lighter. My energy is my own. The colors of my maple tree and the purple hyacinth are so lovely- I don’t feel an overlay of emotional dust and gray anymore.

My G-spot is working again. Like a charm. Damn. (If he had an energetic connection, it was in my second chakra- near where the G-spot sits in a woman’s vagina.)

Love just kinda pours out of me. For my partner and family. For my work. For my clients. For myself.

My spiritual connection has…deepen and intensified. It may be passing, but what a gift to feel that now.

I feel in love with life, my people. It’s partly romantic love- where everything is fresh and clean and bright. But it’s also relief and acceptance and welcoming that I am no longer tied to this particular difficulty. It’s freedom, and I love my freedom.

This may all be part of my next steps- a combo of being released and moving forward. I am shifting into a new version of myself. Again. But this time, part of me is a queen. (There are parts that are still a student, for sure. But some of me is maturing, into a queen.) I feel solid and beautiful, grounded and self-assured.

How can I be sure that all this is due to the loss of a connection? Well, I can’t. I could tell you things, but they wouldn’t make sense to you, would they? I can only say that this is my interpretation of events. But I trust myself and I trust my connection to the Universe. And this is what it is.

And I am glad to be here. It was worth all the work. All the strange spirals and lessons, they gave me my freedom from him. And my freedom is worth the work.

::: ::: ::: :::

 

* This is where the asterisk goes to.

02 May 2017: For the last 15 days I have delighted in being cruel to WatchGuy in this space.

To be clear: he deserved everything he got. Several times in the last year I have asked him to go away, stop stalking me, and turn off the energetic connection (which he has known about for almost two years now). He and the BabyMama continued to not only stalk me online, but do things they knew were hurtful and unkind- precisely because they were hurtful and unkind to me and they enjoyed it. That is the definition of cruel. I also told him recently what would happen if he and the BabyMama didn’t stop. His behavior changed- maybe reduced by 90%, hers reduced by 60% or so (one wonders if he didn’t tell her the full story or if he simply hung her out to dry). He knew my cruelty was coming. [Sad fact: I didn’t even get to use my best stuff. Ah well, it’s there for future use if needed. As well, I only ever had to tell the truth- I never made anything up, so that made the job easier.] So, what they got was exactly what they dished out.

What I didn’t know was how awful it was to live with the energy of inflicting cruelty. Like anything, it has good and bad sides, but the bad side is much longer-lasting. I learned a lot in the past two weeks.

I learned that I enjoy the fight, but that the cruelty- the feeling of it, the inflicting of it- is awful. It’s like eating Taco Bell: might taste good initially, but you regret it for the next 10 hours as it travels through your system. I am not built to live in the energy of cruelty. It’s awful; it makes black marks in your heart and soul, it is a descending into pain and projection. It is an immature stabbing outward because you are crying inward. It is the joy of inflicting fear and control as your own heart tightens on itself. I have learned to use cruelty as a tool when needed. I won’t hesitate to use it in the future. But it is not a good place for me, at all. To those who live in it, how truly horrid it must be.

::: ::: ::: :::

You guys are funny. I can see you even if you use old or different things to be hidden. When you were gone for those three days, my feed looked a lot different. When you came back, so did all the new/old stuff. I see you there.

[[Some people are slow learners. So, let’s catch everyone up from our previous episode where we learned that WatchGuy had left TheClubMermaid for a walkabout this time last year. He was tired of being screamed at, tired of being belittled, and he’d found out something not great about TheClubMermaid on her ‘dating site’ profile. Since he’d given up a lot – his life, wife, and kids – to be with her, he felt kinda pissed about it. And one day he left and walked and walked and walked. Little did TheClubMermaid know, but he’d been thinking of going back to his wife. (He can deny all this, of course, but we know a couple of things: WatchGuy’s soul only makes contact when he’s thinking of me or feeling something so intense his soul needs help. Despite repeated requests, he hasn’t been able to let go since September of 2016- makes a person wonder why his soul still needs help, right? Also, he can lie about this, but…he’s kinda not known for his truth-telling on this subject. Plus, what do I have to lose in telling the truth? Not a thing. In fact, it’s more fun for me if I do tell the truth, because then I don’t have to worry about proving it- I’ve got the receipts.)  And here we are, a year later, and WatchGuy and TheClubMermaid are married. What a difference a year makes, right?]]

So.

I took a few days off to be with myself.

I am definitely someone who has to try things a few times to see how it works. I have to learn the hard way, in other words.

But what I discovered, again, is how fun (yes, fun) being petty and cruel can be. I can be cruel if needed, I can be petty. I can even get a little enjoyment out of it. But after about three days, I just can’t sustain it.

Being cruel and petty is not who I am. It makes me feel awful- out of myself, out of my true energy. Being cruel and petty is not who I want to be, either. It’s not me- at all.

And what I discovered, in writing and writing and writing these past couple of days is what different kinds of people we are. You are not the kind of people that like to learn or change. Perhaps most importantly, you are not people who care for the truth. I would endure any pain the truth might bring just to have the truth, but you are the kinds of people who would rather avoid the truth precisely because of the pain. We are so very different (and I find that both fascinating and sad).

I’m glad WatchGuy told you the truth about the sex in late 2016. But I think you are the kind of woman who, faced with the truth that someone used sex with you as a way to get to sleep at night, probably says to herself, “But I love him, so that’s okay.” Whereas I am the type of person who simply could not bypass the feelings of hurt and betrayal knowing that someone I love, someone who supposedly loves me, would use my body without my knowing or my permission. He didn’t even have the decency to ask you for help. It would have been as simple as “I’m really stressed and struggling right now; I can’t sleep. Can you help me figure this out?” Instead he just took what he wanted. It’s selfish.

I am the kind of person who finds that horrible on so many levels. And it is precisely because neither of you finds it horrible that you’re perfect for each other. And it is also precisely why I’ll never be attracted to someone like him, ever.

He also told you about Forty Shades of 40, too. Good on him. I’m guessing he didn’t tell you the part where he visits three of the posts regularly (or did) to…be the master of his domain. (How do we know? Because even after the excitement of my readers died down, those three posts got regular visits. Facebook will tell you how far your ‘reach’ is on a particular post- and those kept getting ‘reaches’ even after the year was done. Facebook also asks if you’d like to advertise posts sometimes, and it will suggest where you should advertise. When it suggests the suburbs of Boston (North and East) I know who’s been skewing the data.) Last Friday he visited the posts where I’m in the shower- I got the same Velveteen Rabbit text on Pinterest a little while later. That’s how the algorithm works.

I stopped by your Facebook page the other day. Don’t know why- hadn’t been there since December. And I see that you’re married- congratulations. I thought, for sure, the fight you had on his birthday would be the death of you. (Ya’ll fight A LOT.)

And this is another place where we are vastly different people- I’m not the kind of person who would scream and cry (saying he’s ‘yours’ for that day) because my partner wanted to spend time with his kids on his birthday. They were here before you. They get precious little time with him, compared to you. They actually need him more than you do (also: you’re a grown woman who can get her needs met many different ways- they are children). And you, of all people, should know how important it is for girls to have strong relationships with their father. I just don’t understand that kind of selfishness.

But here we are. And here you are. I saw the picture of you in your dress and it answered something I’ve seen for weeks. Whenever the symbol Life gave me for you comes around, there is a fluttering of fabric, exactly the color of your dress. And then, like a projector with a movie, on the fabric is a picture of you, and you’re lifting a champagne glass towards your mouth, only when you go to drink, it’s sand that comes out. Now I know what it means.

I also see that either you’ve got an excellent tuck game, or you’re no longer pregnant. I know it gave you a lot of joy to be hurtful and show me how much you were doing to prep for the baby. And I had visions of WatchGuy being super happy at a park with a disabled little boy all during November and December. But I do think it’s best that neither of you raise a child with problems. I don’t think you have the guts or the strength for it, which is not a judgment- lots of people don’t.

As for you and WatchGuy, after more writing, I finally figured out what keeps you both attracted to me. Now I know the dynamic. And even when you’re done with me, it’s something that will haunt your relationship as long as it lasts. Because neither of you will do the work to fix it. But I think you’re the kind of people who don’t mind.

[[It’s this: you’re always going to need a third energy in your relationship. You don’t just have the trust karma to deal with, you’ll never feel ‘normal’ unless there’s a third energy between you- because that’s how you started! Now, you can solve that a couple of ways, but I think the most useful- given your relational development- is a three-way. I would say FFM, but I think that would drive TheClubMermaid over the edge. And an MMF would definitely give her the male attention she wants, but I think WatchGuy…no, I think WatchGuy would dig it as long as the male attention wasn’t towards him. So, you could try that and see if you could get it out of your systems. May the odds be ever in your favor!]]

Lastly, even though we find each other repugnant, I’d like to ask for something. Your husband’s soul only opens itself to me for communication and expression. That’s not how it should be. I know you love that quote from Pride and Prejudice “Whatever souls are made of, his and mine are the same…” (although, I’m quite sure you’re more Lydia than Elizabeth- have you actually read the book?) – it needs to be you his soul turns towards. Can you please help him with that? I don’t want to see it or know it or hear it or feel him anymore. I have asked him to turn off the connection (he knows how), but he won’t. And all I can hope for is that you would want his soul to turn towards you as much as I do. Please, help him find a way for that to happen.

I do not want to be part of your lives, in any way, at all. If I had one concern, it was for WatchGuy’s soul and that of his children. His youngest daughter turned off something in her heart for him last weekend (he has a different or deeper connection with her, from her perspective. And she has this beautiful big, pink heart full of love for him. But that changed last weekend- he’s losing them and that actually makes me very sad). But he’s made his choices. He’s grieving right now, I think. And I can leave him to that- if he needs to visit old places and go over things. I understand that. But please help his soul turn itself towards you. I don’t want to know any of it, any more.

::: ::: ::: :::

May 12-14. WatchGuy is screaming to get to his home state. Cannot handle his shit. He doesn’t realize that as he’s screaming this out to the Universe, he’s also screaming his energy for going there: “I’ve made a huge mistake.” Of course, we’ve no idea what the mistake is, but it’s a big one. It’s bigger than he is. But I think a chat with his Dad got him back in the marriage game. Ready to roll!

Weird thing is- WatchGuy’s sexual energy is on me like glue. Is he getting a rise out of ‘battling’ with me on Facebook? (Dear lord, ‘battling on Facebook’ is just…ridiculous…for a grown man to be doing.) Gotta ask: is he more amorous since Sunday? Is it more intense than usual? Is he feeling alive again because he’s connected with me? He has never gone more than 3 days without being in contact with me. It’s really ironic- there was a time when this kind of intense connection on his side was something I truly wished for and couldn’t get. But now that I don’t want it- it’s here in spades. He seeks me out each day, purposefully. When he can’t have something, it makes it that much more precious, right? Even fighting with someone is a way to stay connected when you’re desperate. What I do love about this situation is that I have the power. He’s checking each day to see what I’m up to and if this post has been updated. He’s waiting to see if he can connect – in whatever desperate way he has available to him. I am holding him on the knife’s edge of desire. I wanted this for a long time, and now I have it. It’s fucking glorious. 

In contrast, this weekend TheClubMermaid was at home, alone. Or rather, at work, all weekend. Mother’s Day Brunch is a motherfucker. One thing I never understood until after I realized she wasn’t pregnant anymore was why I kept getting ads for ‘fatty liver symptoms’ when all the other ads related to these two would come up. But now that we know she’s not pregnant, we have to wonder: is the reason he doesn’t bring the kids home because she drinks a bit too much? Is that why all the drinks ads show up on my Pinterest and FB, I wonder? Is she not just ordering for the club, she’s ordering for herself?

The thing that always gets me, over and over, about this situation is that I have emailed WatchGuy on several occasions and asked him to leave me alone. I tell him what I know, what I can see. And he first protects himself. And then, sometimes, he protects her. But not always. Either he doesn’t tell her the whole truth or she doesn’t believe him. And I was super clear last time around: either leave me alone or I will spew truth. It’s super simple- if they go away, so do I. If they stay, so do I. And I have material for days.

So, we can see that TheClubMermaid is ready to have a ‘difficult conversation.’ But what is it? Is it about the wedding photo booth biz she wants to start (and might need a loan for)? Is it the sex thing from last year? Is it that she needs a newer, bigger car for that photo booth equipment? Is it that she wants to try for another baby – given she was working hard on that this time last year? We’ve no idea. The trip to New Brunswick still looks like it’s on, though.

For today, I’ll leave you with this: WatchGuy loves one thing more than any other, to believe that he can’t make a decision and then foist the decision off on a woman. And then, when it goes differently than what he wished, to blame the woman for the outcome.

If you’re dealing with him, you can hold his feet to the fire two ways: either let him always decide, and remind him the outcomes are his problem, or let him not decide, but remind him that his lack of participation in the decision is a decision and he doesn’t get to complain.

So, if the WatchGuy and TheClubMermaid want to continue playing the game, we shall. I have a couple of awesome posts prepped and ready! But if they agree to go home, we’re all done here. I’m defending a boundary that was clearly stated, but I’d be so happy to be done and never speak of this again. Wouldn’t you?

::: ::: ::: :::

23 May 2017. Made you look.

I’ve been busy, and you’re not my first priority. But don’t worry, it will come. I just get to say when.

I love (!!!) how hard you’ve been working to make sure I notice you. I mean, you’ve been working extra hard. I screen cap that shit and make counts- the numbers are up there.

What I can’t get my head around is how TheClubMermaid sits so well with this. Were my husband pursuing someone so diligently, we’d be having a talk. Especially when he’s foregoing time with me to be with her. But what did I say about that already? You prefer a third in the room of your heart.

And, too bad about whatever had you upset yesterday. Crying and angry. Super intense. Must have been a shitty day. Stinks.

Anyway, see you soon!

::: ::: ::: :::

01 Jun 2017

I’m sorry last Wednesday (25 May) was such a rough night for you guys. ClubMermaid, if you’re referring to me as ‘The Witch’ I just want to thank you. It’s a huge compliment!

I have to say, I do love that you’ve put WatchGuy’s nuts in a jar on the social media front. He’s about 96% less interactive than before. I think he likes being controlled like that, so- well done you! He is still active – quite a bit Saturday night last. Was he out of town, or was it just a case of ‘if the cat’s away, the mouse will play?’ I saw him peeking out last night and at coffee break today, too.

And you! You are doing a bit of camouflaging, but you’re still there. On the regular, just like always. But you and I have our own history, don’t we?

Remember in Oct-Nov-Dec of 2015* when you were willing to be with him, protect him, wait for him, you were his best friend, you wanted to be the best lover of his life, you felt so much love for him- remember?

I remember, too.

Remember when, on that first Valentine’s Day you tried to spend together (2016) when he had asked for the divorce, but hadn’t said it was due to you- and he was trying his damnedest to get out of the house, but it kept getting stalled? And you were trying to be supportive, but also kinda pissed- there was a time limit, ffs! And it felt like Life was taking you on the bumpiest ride ever?

I remember, too.

Remember when you got WatchGuy tickets for that concert in March and you felt superior and cool because you were the awesome girlfriend who wanted him to have fun? And you also gave yourself points for keeping him away from his family?

I remember, too.

Oh! How about the time in late August when he told you he wanted to be with his girls more and take better care of them, and you felt so angry you wanted to punch the computer screen? Because it meant the wedding would have to wait- and you went looking for how to do a cheap wedding?

I remember, too.

And that night he left. You felt a little ‘whatever, guys have left me before’ but also a lot crazy and freaked out and wondering why you were acting that way? And then remembered – shazam! – maybe you were pregnant! Maybe it actually fucking worked! And it did. (I have the digital receipts for how that ‘happened’ btw. It wasn’t an ‘accident.’)

I remember, too.

Remember the night before the custody hearing/divorce settlement and how he really needed you and that night was important for him- if he got what he wanted things were going to change drastically. And you were supportive, right there with him in the tears. Until it was all done and you sorta fucking hated those kids because they were ‘taking him from you?’ (Although, kudos for ‘stepping up’ with the Christmas gifts. But, you think maybe kids don’t want things as much as they want time with their dad?)

I remember, too.

How about all those nights in December and January when you felt alone in your relationship? Even though you were engaged- he was gone. (Sweetie, that’s one of the best parts of the relationship for him. He gets to fuck and be fed (although I know you’re still working on being able to cook!), and not be around you very much. He goes away for the weekend and has a nice long commute and doesn’t have to hang with you much – you guys do a lot of ‘computers on the couch’ right? He digs the lack of interaction. It’s relaxing to not have to do anything with you.)

I remember, too.

For whatever reason, I feel you, too sometimes. Not sure why. But I know more of you and your truth than you know. I see your soul just like I see his. It’s black like tar and without substance, like smoke.

… … … …

* Xela, super sorry if this a revelation for you. You gotta figure WatchGuy lied through his teeth about the affair and there’s, what?, 25-30% of things that are still lies or hidden, right? I’m sorry if this was news to you.

That said, I feel you, too. Or, rather, I see you. And what I have always seen is a picture of you, with a guy behind you, his arms wrapped around your waist, and you’re laughing and so is he. I can feel that you’re happy, and so is he. He’s around your age I think, but he’s also wise (so sometime he feels older than he might actually be). Either way, he really loves you. He chooses you. What’s more, he really loves your kids. Like, he really digs them. He loves your kids in the way that, when they get married, WatchGuy will walk them down the aisle, but this guy- your partner- he’s the one they’ll dance with and say, “You are my real dad. You were always there when I needed someone.” (And I would bet $10,000 that WatchGuy will now try to be a better dad. Because being a Dad, to him, isn’t about doing the right thing, it’s about his ego. And now here’s this guy he has to compete with. So, he’s gonna step up for the sake of competition, not because his daughter’s need him.)

This guy I see, though, he’s a good guy. And if you keep doing your work – healing, finding the sources of your relationship patterns, feeling, grieving, growing- he’s gonna be there. He won’t present in the way you expect. He won’t present as wealthy, just as fun and supportive and smart and really liking you. There will come a moment when he asks you to trust him- and you’ll have to cross the bridge that WatchGuy cut the pieces from. But it will be worth it! Keep doing your work, he’s out there.

… … … …

ClubMermaid, what I want you to know is that yes, I knew WatchGuy. Worked with him, had a deep crush on him, cared about him, watched his soul for years, encouraged him to grow. But I want no further connection with him. I see how he thinks, behaves, speaks. He’s a coward. He’s cruel. He’s selfish. He sure as fuck can’t communicate. He refuses to grow. I am not into those kind of people.

The last week has been awesome with both of you mostly out of my life. I couldn’t be happier. That’s all I want. I don’t want you. I don’t want him. I don’t want to see or know any of your life. I want to be completely disconnected. And I can’t figure out why you guys don’t want that.

… … … …

I actually don’t want to play the game of punishing you if you’re on social media anymore. (By the way, there are 5 different IP addresses who check this post regularly, so you’ve got fans!) I have some other things to write- I hate having other people’s stories in my head. Plus, I think the playing field should be level. So, there will be 1 or 2 more things to share, but after that, I’m done. I have a wonderful life to live. And I just want to drop these rocks I carry and let them go. They used to be jewels to me, but now they are just dead weight. I’m letting them go.

::: ::: ::: :::

22 Jun 2017

WatchGuy.
What.
The Hell.
Happened.
Last Thursday?

Dude. The signs were so fucking clear. Something was up with you. Luckily, I have no idea what. I could see the signs, but Life has put some kind of force field around me, and I can’t hear or feel you anymore (HOORAY!!!!). So, I know something was up, but I don’t know what.

Let me just be clear, though: you are still 100% in charge of your life. You are at the pinnacle of options in Western society. You are a white dude with more resources than 95% of the world. Capital and connections that could see you through any problem. You aren’t gay, you aren’t non-white, you have no oppressive forces working on blocking your aspirations or choices. So- wherever you’re at, it’s all on you. Don’t forget that you can make new choices. Other choices. Jesus, just actually choosing would be new for you. Try it.

Also, what are you doing reading my old emails to you? Are you missing something? Looking for clues? Maybe you finally realized I had something useful to say. Well, better late than never.

… … … …

Well, gang, here we are. The last time we speak or communicate (I FUCKING HOPE!). The thing is, what I am going to share, once upon a time I hoped would rip your world apart. But I don’t really care about that anymore. What I care about is not carrying around your story anymore. What I care about is dumping these images out of my head and leaving them with the people who are actually in them. Plus, your relationship with TheClubMermaid has so much tinder beneath it already- it hardly needs my help to light the dynamite and watch it explode.

The thing is, the Solstice was yesterday, and there’s a super new moon tomorrow, and I loooove me some new moon energy. It’s time to dump this garbage off and let go. Because you know what? My life is fucking amazing right now. I could not be more in love with my husband, my kids, my work, my friends. And I’m buying a new house! (Which I know you know, because you’re on Pinterest a FUCK TONNE. By the way, they changed their algorithm so I don’t see your pins until I am two layers in. Means I can totally ignore your shit unless I want to see it! YES!!)

Anyway, here’s the last bits.

For TheClubMermaid: He did not choose you. That’s why you never feel chosen. He didn’t choose you when he left his wife- ask him to tell you the truth about how he ‘chose’ you then (WatchGuy, I’ve got the evidence, don’t forget). He didn’t choose you after the pregnancy announcement- rather, he agreed with someone else’s assessment that you should be married. Agreeing with someone else’s idea is not the same as actually choosing it yourself, you know? He never actually chose you on his own, of his own desire. As you know, he even typed my name in the search field of the ‘dating’ website. That’s why you never feel chosen- because it’s never happened. I think even now he doesn’t choose you- driving to your place is simply habit, it was a place to hide when he was getting divorced. Yeah, you’re married, but you both know that doesn’t mean a couple is connected. This is all to say: your intuition that he’s not choosing you is correct; he’s not, and he never has. He doesn’t know what he wants, other than regular sex, which makes choosing anything hard.

I would totally recommend the book “Co-Dependent No More” by Melodie Beattie. Do the world a favor and get healed.

For WatchGuy: Sometimes my intuition comes out in funny ways. Like, I will ponder over a thing for weeks or months, and then, suddenly, I get a ‘download’ of the answer. The right choice or perspective or action just tumbles into my head or heart. Sometimes I will just ‘know’ something – it might be a sense of deja vu or that someone is lying or whatever. And sometimes I will move my body a certain way and see or feel something and know it is true as well.

About 10-12 months ago, I was in my bedroom, roaming around in the semi-dark, trying to find something and I was crawling around. I popped up onto my knees and as I moved into that position, I saw and felt the most intense thing from you ever. It was like a little movie that took about 5 seconds to play in my head- a ‘download.’

What I saw and felt was this: ClubMermaid was on her knees, mouth open, giving you a blow job. She was dressed in black lingerie- sexy stuff with stockings and garters. It was actually a special gift to you that she had worn that, wanted to not just give you sex, but be sexy for you. It was the first time she actually started feeling in love with you, or admitting to herself that she might be, so her heart chakra was open (go look that up if you need to).

And you…you were definitely going at it. But you were thinking of me. At first, the energy was of…something the kids call a ‘hate fuck.’ You were imagining it was me, on my knees, in front of you, and taking it. Taking all your anger, hatred, being subservient to you. There was a sense of power and satisfaction and release in that. But then it changed, and you began to imagine what it would be like to really have sex with me. To really enjoy and connect with me sexually- blow job and whatever else. And there was a sense of release with that, as well, only way more flowing and honest, not angry. Pleasurable.

Here is the total shit part, though- if this happened (and I have to believe it did, based on you sending pictures and images when you’re feeling intense things or thinking of me sexually)- when your new wife’s heart chakra was open, you were literally ramming your desire for me down her mouth and into her heart. The hatred, the anger, the love and desire for someone else- all that got pressed into her heart energy. It’s no fucking wonder she feels inadequate in comparison to me. I talked about this in my post on rape, but in Tantra, the energy you fuck with gets transferred to the other person (which is why you’re becoming worse, WatchGuy- you fuck a black soul, you get bad energy). So, if you’re loving, that energy is exchanged. If you’re bored or angry or whatever, that’s what your fucking and bodies are about. And if you’re thinking of someone else, that gets exchanged, too.

ClubMermaid- I’m sure you can get that energy out of yourself, and maybe it would help your relationship, but I don’t know how. There’s a tarot reader in Littleton (Sheri) and she might be able to help. You have to tell her the whole truth, though, so she knows what to do. But I don’t know a way to get that energy out of your system- you need to find someone to help you.

So, WatchGuy, if that happened, I am telling you to get it out of my own head-it’s not my story. Luckily we do not have this connection anymore, but it was intense when we did. And maybe you should protect yourself.

What else can I tell you of late? That you try not to think about me. Which means I’m on your mind a lot. Don’t worry, you’ll get past it! I know you work extra hard some days to make sure you’re seen on social media. Feel free to keep on trying- now that I can’t feel or see you, it’s no big deal. Super easy to ignore (woo hoo!).

I have a book for you, too. One you should have picked up a long time ago- could have saved yourself a bunch of grief. It is: “When Good People Have Affairs” by Mira Kirschenbaum. Dude, if you had only humbled yourself to pick up a fucking book you could have made such better decisions. It would probably still help you a lot to read it, though.

 

For Xela: In an alternate universe, I would sit you down at a cafe and give you clear instructions on how to get over him. And it would probably take you about three days. But we can’t do that in this case (weird! actually, not to an INFJ like myself- that would not be weird at all, but I digress). So I’m going to tell you something important: who WatchGuy is now is his real self. The cruel asshole he is- that’s his real self. He was trying to fill a role when he was with you, but that mask has come off. Which is good, actually, because now he’s not acting or trying to be good anymore. And you can see the results for yourself. That’s who he really is, though- so take that into consideration.

Also: look what he’s attracted to when he’s really himself. He’s attracted to black-souled garbage (I try not to call people ‘garbage’- but what can you say about someone so selfish? someone who competes with children? I think ‘garbage’ is apt). That should tell you everything right there. (Also, he really does not like women who are smarter than he is, and he considers ClubMermaid to be less intelligent than him [she believes this, too]. Part of why he feels better with her is that he doesn’t feel inferior. Can you imagine being so insecure? What is it they say? Strong women scare boys and excite men. That exact thing is him; he’s a scared boy.) It might hurt, but I hope it actually helps: look at him for who he is now, because that’s his true self – and it’s not worth being sad over.

No books for you. The other two would probably help and provide a lot of insight to this situation. If I could recommend anything else it would be Gloria Steinem’s “Revolution from Within.” Just a general foundational book on healing and empowerment.

… … … …

You know, for so long this blog was a love letter to WatchGuy. It was a place to express what I was feeling and growing through and trying to understand – it was a place to communicate with him and document my own becoming. But I am a new woman now. Better than ever. I did the work, the hard, hard work of letting go and healing. And, goddess bless it, my life is gorgeous. I am so grateful for what I have now. For so long I gave credit for my growth to you, WatchGuy. But you didn’t do anything. I chose my life every step of the way. I knew what was right for my soul and I worked my ass off to get it done. And my beautiful life is the outcome. And I am leaving you behind, finally, because I just want to hang with my people. You’re no longer a part of my life, other than being a social media annoyance.

Am I glad to have known you and been on this journey? Yes. It has been integral to my soul healing and opening. But I chose it, every step of the way. I own the power and the wisdom and the strength from this journey.

And I don’t need to be here anymore. I have no more stories, vision, feelings to share or give back. I have no desire to connect with you or anyone. I’m cutting the last strings tonight, setting the match alight. I’m ready to be done. If I never see you again, it will be too soon.

I do wish you all the best. What a messed up situation… Xela still has the best chances of getting out alive, healed, and enjoying the fruits of her work. WatchGuy and ClubMermaid, as you sow, so shall you reap. I wish I could be around to watch the explosion. But I really don’t care anymore.

Best of luck to you all. I am off to live my life, to actually live it. Because I finally love it.

Addedum: 24 Jun 2017

WatchGuy. As much as I don’t care what happens in your life, I do love that you choose me every time. Every time.

If there was a part of a man that I would want the most, it would be that part- the part that chooses me, every time.

When I left our friendship, you chose to visit the hormones site to see what I was doing. And then this site. And years of staying close to me here. And then the desire- you wanted what I was talking about, who I was. You chose to put my name in that search bar.

And through the last, what? 15 months? Every time I communicated, you chose to listen. Every time I left, you came back stronger, looking to connect, even in anger. Yes, a man who chooses to stay with me even in the midst of his anger at me is a gift (luckily, I’ve got two of ’em! You and my fabulous husband. By the way, he’s such a better human than you).

And there you were, last night, making sure I knew you were online, connecting with me. You chose me- again. Even at the detriment of your marriage, you choose me. Every time.

It’s interesting, that’s for sure. But it’s also kinda sad. You should put your efforts where they will be rewarded- where the stock will rise. Because you are not even worth a look from me anymore. I overvalued you, completely and utterly. And you underperformed, completely and utterly.

I’m sorry you’ve had to spend the last two days (and couple of weeks, right?) explaining yourself to your wife. But that’s your fault. If only you’d told the truth to begin with you wouldn’t be here now. Here’s hoping you’re telling the truth this time, instead of CYA lies. I think the chances of that  are slim, though.

In any case, it’s not annoying to see you on social media anymore, it makes me laugh in a weary kind of way. You keep choosing me, and I could not care less. And you can’t even figure that out. It’s time to grow up, I think. No need to be where you’re not wanted…unless you can’t stand the other places where you are wanted. Your life is what you make of it, WatchGuy. The quality of the results will tell you whether you’re choosing well or not.

Addendum: 25 Jun 2017

WatchGuy, does your wife know how much time you’re spending with me, tonight? It’s like fireworks- you’re everywhere tonight on FB. lol

You’re both on tonight, but your behaviors and algorithm results are different. Always have been. And she’s on tonight, but still looking to help you and fix your relationship. You are are such an asshole.

She also appears to be looking up some things related to my blow job intuition- which I can only take to mean it was true. Well, then. :o)

I was reminded of something tonight, washing the dishes. You prefer fake things, replicas, to the real ones. Cheaper, easier, good ones will fool others well enough. Buying what’s real is too much- too much money, too much investment, too much fear of losing it, I would guess. You prefer the fake. How appropriate that you should end up with TheClubMermaid, then. The fake, cheap, plastic version of what you really wanted.

07 Jul 2017

You guys are doing so good. Thanks for staying away, mostly. I do have to say I got a good laugh when I realized that WatchGuy had read the last update about 10 days before TheClubMermaid did (his behavior changed first, then she pinned some fantastic stuff to let me know she’d sen it). Excellent! Still undermining the relationship. WatchGuy, what I really want to know is: do you check in with your new wife as much as you do with me on Facebook? And I love that you ‘say goodnight’ on the regular by checking Forty Shades of 40. Right before you go to sleep. So thoughtful. And the both of you have visited in the last couple of days. Still poking around, huh? Well…there you go…actions say a lot, don’t they?

What continues to fascinate me about this whole thing is how you both stick around. Why, in any god’s name, would you do that? Morbid fascination? Wondering what secrets your lover never told you, but that I happened to hear or see or feel? Why not just leave it all behind? Why not let go and leave it all behind? I will never understand what keeps you both here.

In any case, since you’re still lurking, I still have stories to tell. Another time, though. Tonight I just wanted to tell TheClubMermaid: if he’s happy for the next fews days, it’s because I posted and he knows how I’m doing and how to find my energy (is he with his girls this weekend? I can see that you’re at work…). His sexual energy has been wide open to me for the last week. Luckily, I am turned in the opposite direction- I don’t have to feel it any more and I can avoid it completely. And I have grown- I’m not in the same place he is. What a fucking relief. Anyway…good luck holding it together!

 

04 Aug

I offer congratulations on your new home and new dog! (Have you actually gotten the dog yet or still shopping? Still with the neck and back pain on the new bed, huh? You remember what I told you about that…)

It’s so strange, you know, WatchGuy’s soul or the Universe or something wants me to know how you’re doing. The signs are abundant. For instance, this past Sunday, July 30, the signs clearly pointed to you thinking about me a lot, on a lot of different levels, while you simultaneously had to keep explaining to your wife that you love her and your relationship is okay. Poor you. Who knows if the signs are true; luckily, I don’t have to pay any attention to them.

I shouldn’t make fun of you- it’s very hard when you love two people and you can’t figure out what to do. And still, you visit my site on the regular. Pinterest, Facebook, and here at least every two days- sometimes multiple times in one day. And the last four Fridays at 8:47 am you come by 40 Shades of Forty (you’re the only person who visits, dude). You know, it’s funny, it took me a few times to verify that there was a behavior pattern for you when I’m not on social media much, but there is. Your breadth of topics widens and your frequency of interaction increases when I’m not active. I’m not sure if that’s because you re-visit old stuff or you want to press the buttons and see if I’ll come out to play. But the behavior has repeated itself, so I know that when I’m not active much, it upsets you enough to change your behavior. Interesting.

And then poor TheClubMermaid. If the symbols were right about Sunday, something WatchGuy said must have calmed her down, or she’s out of town or something, because her usual behaviors for when she’s worried about your relationship calmed down (until tonight). You both have these things you do when you’re fighting (I didn’t tell WG about all  of the behaviors- what fun would that be?) so it’s easy for me to know when that’s happening.

By the way, ClubMermaid, you never have to worry about paying off your debt. Yes, WatchGuy will hold that over you, but he’s held it over you for more than a year now. He’s never going to play that card and leave or whatever. He might bark, but he won’t bite. It would mean giving up blow jobs, right? Never gonna happen. You’re free to do as you wish with your credit cards and debt. Nothing will ever come of his threats.

So, I’m here for the last story. It’s not nearly as fun as the blow job story, but I still hold it, so it’s time to let it go. It’s about the pregnancy.

WatchGuy has always wanted a boy-child. He wanted a boy to prove to himself and his father that he could be a better father to a son than his own father was to him. WatchGuy had the chance to be a father to a boy- both with TheClubMermaid and another woman (there was a time when he had the choice to meet another woman; he didn’t take it). With the Other Woman, she would have had a boy already, and WatchGuy would have had to learn to love and parent another man’s son to the degree he imagined himself capable of. With your child, the disability would have been the problem (was the problem, right?). WatchGuy would have had to learn to love a child with Down’s Syndrome, parent him, and protect him in the way his own father never did for him. It was an impossible task, but he would have done it. Had you not released the pregnancy, obviously. (And truly, that was probably the best decision. For WG to step up into the role of ‘mature man’ and ‘father’ to that child, TheClubMermaid would have had to leave somehow (death, divorce, who knows). Only by her leaving would he have been forced to take on the fathering role and tasks to the degree that it would change him into the man and father-to-a-son he hoped to be. Otherwise he would have pawned everything else off on you.)

And it took me a while, but now I think I know why WatchGuy’s dad was so happy on January 20 this year. It was the day he found out you wouldn’t be having a Down’s baby, right? When I told WG about this in March, his connection with is dad shifted into anger. His dad didn’t let on, I think, to how he really felt. Or that he felt so much relief at the fact that you wouldn’t be having a baby with problems. (Also, his soul doesn’t really like TheClubMermaid much.)

In any case, a few days later I had a zillion ads for Tylenol in Facebook- I can only imagine it was her relaying post-abortion instructions and pains to WatchGuy and close friends. And then ads for Mirena (an IUD) for a good long time. WatchGuy wasn’t gonna let that “missed a pill” business happen again, right? (By the way, I’ve been getting ads for Nuvaring  or Nuvaguard- I think??? Did the IUD lower your sex drive? Happens a lot. But be careful you two! Aggressive sex can dislodge the Nuvaring and then…you can get pregnant.)

Who knows, I could be wrong. But I’m not wrong about the fact that any opportunity WatchGuy had to become the father (and, the man) he hoped to be, are gone. Perhaps it is left for another life.

By the way, WatchGuy, you’ve been reading my old emails again. Are you looking for clues? Remembering what I said? Where I was right? Well, maybe you’ll find something useful…

Oh, and by the way, what were you doing looking at this post? Are you going to visit? I hope so. I can’t even be mad if you go and take TheClubMermaid with you. It’s an amazing place. Although I will confess that I would have loved to be your tour guide. Whenever I think of the two of you, I think of the Donnie and Marie song “A Little Bit Country, A Little Bit Rock and Roll” (that’s so you guys, right?) – also because she’s ten years older than you- and I hope she can enjoy your Gen X view of the city. Because that was the time it was so great, when we Gen Xers were coming of age. And I always thought you and I would have some great conversations about that time, the music, and those years because we lived it at the same time. Anyway, enjoy it if you go.

I think this is all I’ve got. Since I can’t hear or feel you anymore (maybe, once in a great while there is some old feeling or reminder, but nothing close, and nothing regular) there’s no new info to share or meditate upon.

The plain fact is, I don’t care about writing this stuff anymore. And I have a little more compassion for your situation. You are who you are. You’re ‘real’ now- fewer masks- and that’s a good thing. (It’s just that I think your ‘mask-less’ self is pretty awful, so I’m happy to move in a different direction.) I don’t need to make comparisons anymore or judge you for being or doing less than you’re capable of. You are who you are. And if this life you have makes you happy, then kudos. Plenty of people die happy having lived a quiet life of mid-level awareness and engagement. No need to grow or change (I’m just super glad I don’t have to watch it or listen to it anymore. For someone like me, mediocrity is depressing). At our core, who we are lays the path for what our life is like, and if you’re happy with who you are and what your life is like, well done.

There are songs that remind me of you (I always thought is was weird/funny that we both had ‘song’ names)- some of which you know and some you don’t. There will be symbols that tell me things, perhaps (but I don’t have to listen anymore.) There is a place in my memory for you. But I did all the hard work. I’m grateful for your role, but I’m the one who chose to learn so much and grow so much from our connection. I’m very proud of myself. I’m very glad I learned how to love myself. And I’m very glad I’ve healed enough to move on. Feel free to get all up in my biz on social media, but I don’t feel or hear anything anymore, so I know it’s just you, being you, and doing these things to try and grab the attention of a woman who sees through you. I’m so much better now than I was before.

Best of luck, WatchGuy. I will say again what I’ve always wished for you.

May you be happy, may you be healthy, may you be peaceful, may you live with ease. I wish this for all beings, even TheClubMermaid.  And please, as ever, be the kind of man you would want your daughters to recognize as a ‘good man.’ Help them be strong and love themselves. Lastly, quit being a dick to your ex; how you treat her is at least as important in your children’s understanding of how men should treat women as your presence in their life- be fucking polite, you jerk.

Until the next life…
-Joanna

I forgot to add this. This post came through my FB feed on July 30. It’s interesting because it contains the word ‘Neighbors’ which is the name of a club I talked about in that Seattle post. Now, both of you were on FB that night, so I’ve no idea who it was. But the way the algorithm works, it would appear that someone went to explore the Neighbors club in Seattle and then came to visit my page afterwards. I’m gonna say it was WatchGuy, but who knows. [This ad is the best the algorithm can do for what’s in my area that contains the word ‘Neighbors.’]

 

TheClubMermaid. I don’t think anyone has told you, but sitting on my Facebook page is a special kind of masochism. You will feel better if you stop. We’ll all feel better if you stop.

This morning, this ad came through my FB feed.

I guessed it was you because all of WatchGuy’s usual stuff is currently gone (we’ll see how long that lasts). Plus, it was with your usual ads- same ones for months now.

I clicked on the ad and got this:

Interesting.

So, what do I know now that I’ve seen this?

I know you were up late last night or early this morning. Looking for stuff in Riverside, RI. I know that when you get angry or sad you sometimes stay up all night or stay up late or get up early- fits and starts of sleep.

I know that you were stalking me or things in Riverside, RI. [I don’t live in Riverside, anymore. Which your husband knows. Because I have the strangest feeling he drove by my house recently…]

I know that you clicked on this because it interested you. So that probably means you’re looking to paint. And there are lots of things I can infer from that, based on other things I’ve seen.

What’s weird to me is that I know your husband likes his privacy. And here you are, forever clicking away on shit that you’re interested in or dealing with and it all gets sent to my feed because you sit on my page- and I learn a fuck ton about you. How many times did Brad Paisley and his stupid homeowners insurance ad grace my feed? A lot. Same with a lot of the stuff I know about you. So much for privacy!

[Am I psychic? Yes, to a certain extent. I do best when I can feel someone’s vibe. And when you’re on my stuff all the time, it’s very easy for me to feel your vibe. Which is black and tar-like and angry and immature and awful.]

You could attempt cleverness and try some random things- now that you know how this works. But that will also tell me something. It will tell me what you consider ‘random’ (which is never really random- so that tells me something, too). You also visit at specific times, so that gives you away as well. Again, you could attempt to be clever and change both the time and the content, but that still tells me it’s you. The only way to be done, is to be done.

I know you have at least two aliases/alternate IDs on FB. I suppose you use those, as well. But it might be time to get off my page, for your own mental health.

As for WatchGuy, he spent yesterday (Sunday) like he spent last Sunday- thinking of me and trying to explain himself to TheClubMermaid. I tried not to laugh.

WatchGuy, for future reference, reasons not to get married:

  1. She’s pregnant.
  2. You feel you have to be loyal.
  3. Sex.
  4. The invitations have already been sent.

How long will you torture each other do you think?
Oh, this is going to be fun to watch.

Good luck, you two!

 

 

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On grief.

A few months back, I was asked to help a friend create a ceremony to bring her grief ‘home.’ (For those of you who know her, I received permission to share her story.) Her mother had passed in the last few weeks, but in a different part of the country. Her life was here now, in Rhode Island, and she needed a way to bring that grief home, she told me.

I have performed very few memorial services. Usually when someone dies, we seek the familiar, so the old church, whatever it may be, is where we turn. But this was not a memorial service, per se. It was not a way to remember a person, or commune in shared grief, or to connect as a tool to banish grief, but a way to bring grief home, to live with it- to bring it to those who love my friend, so that they could know her better and support her. And that is such a different perspective than most of us take on grief.

Grief is a tricky thing. We have those models, the Stages of Grief, but very few things work as the model suggests, most definitely grief (and if you’ve ever had an amazing design idea at IKEA and tried to make it work at home, you know of what I speak). Grief is a lonely walk, so often, because we see the person, the life, the choices, so differently from anyone else. And this doesn’t only apply to the death of people- it is equally true for the death of relationships, jobs, the ways we see ourselves. Grief, in a counterintuitive way, sprouts anew each time, different flowers from the same root.

For me, grief has been best described by symbols.

There is the initial grief that is like an Egyptian pyramid. A sacred, dark place, vast. It is beautiful- full of gold, memories, resources, things we can actually touch and see and smell. Even when it is cold, the darkness of the passageways of grief has a weight that I welcome. I have walked in the tunnels, admiring all of it, touching the walls, running the fabric of memory through my fingers, even as I knew that it was dead. The warmth of the gold was only because I stood near it, only because my fire gave it light. All of it was dead, even if it was so beautiful that I would be happy to live there forever on some days.

When I think of grief I am reminded that it is not just for dead things that we grieve. It is for what is lost- even if that job, that person, that idea lives on. The connection is lost or radically changed and we grieve for that. Sometimes we cannot let go, even though we know we must. The spiritual practice of grief is opening our grip, by tiny degrees, until our hand is free to move again. We cry and rage and gnash, but eventually, we must let go, or we will die, too. (But also, take your time. That’s the only way to do it.)

As I have accepted the death of things, the way they would never return to ‘normal,’ grief has been a garden of the dead, dead flowers and trellis’ and sculpted hedgerows. Some days the wind blows cold, and others the sun shines. But everything is obviously dead here. And I walk along, letting my hand touch the fragile leaves, watching the memories waft away in the wind, pieces crumbling simply with my walking by them. Here are all my delights and aliveness and growth, returning to the Earth. It is falling apart, and I can do nothing about it, because should I plant again, it will never grow the same. I surrender and accept.

All along the path, grief has been a whack-a-mole. So often I would jump up and try to whack it back into something (whack it ‘away,’ whack it into a particular shape, whack it just to whack it). But then, I slump beside the machine and refuse to play. Let grief do what it will, I will wait for the time to run out, and then decide what do to next.

I have wondered if The Stages of Grief are something that happens inside each of these places. Inside the beautiful pyramid of memory and desire, we bounce between denial, anger, bargaining, depression, and acceptance. Inside the dead garden, we do the same. Perhaps the whack-a-mole is simply these five things repeating themselves until our lessons are learned.

 

 

There is no answer, of course, because grief is a similar::unique path for each person, each time they encounter it.

Grief is one of the most difficult human emotions, I think. It is so painful. It involves so much of us- not just body, mind, spirit as we are now, but all of those things and the depths of our history to the present moment as well. Grief cleans us out.

Perhaps that is the best metaphor, grief cleans us out. There are several rooms in the house of my heart that have been invaded by grief (and sometimes I have welcomed it, but not usually). And it is only through the process of grief that I have had to clean out those rooms. But by cleaning them out, leaving what’s most important (memories, lessons, boundaries), have I been able to move on, to leave the space and energy for new things to come along- sometimes new things in the same room, sometimes new rooms all together.

Grief changes us. That is really all I can say. And that to engage with it is an act of bravery. To bring our grief home is one of the deepest forms of courage of the heart.

 

 

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Still…

Well, hello stranger. I missed the solar eclipse and new moon in Pisces on Feb 26th. Quick recap: chaotic energy. But today I finished my work so I’m giving myself the gift of a quick post here. I’ve got so many things rattling in my head right now…I will write them to you eventually.

::: ::: ::: :::

Still by Alanis Morissette

I am the harm that you inflict
I am your brilliance and frustration
I’m the nuclear bombs if they ‘re to hit
I am your immaturity and your indignance

I am your misfits and your praises
I am your doubt and your conviction
I am your charity and your rape
I am your grasping and expectation

I see you averting your glances
I see you cheering on the war
I see you ignoring your children

And I love you still
And I love you still

I am your joy and your regret
I am your fury and your elation
I am your yearning and your sweat
I am your faithless and your religion

I see you altering history
I see you abusing the land
I see you and your selective amnesia

And I love you still
And I love you still

I am your tragedy and your fortune
I am your crisis and delight
I am your profits and your prophets
I am your art I am your bytes

I am your death and your decisions
I am your passion and your plights
I am your sickness and convalescence
I am your weapons and your light

I see you holding your grudges
I see you gunning them down
I see you silencing your sisters

And I love you still
And I love you still

I see you lie to your country
I see you forcing them out
I see you blaming each other

And I love you still
And I love you still

::: ::: ::: :::

I was on the bike last weekend and my iPod oracle decided to play this. I hadn’t heard it in a year or more and I played it three times through. It reminded me of many things, but mostly the profound nature of love- it’s breadth and depth.

Love. I’m learning a lot about love right now. My beloved and I celebrated the 21st anniversary of our first date in early March. It was very cool to think about how strong and lucky we are to have had so many good years together.

We’ve loved each other in many different ways.

We love amidst the hurt we cause each other, we love amidst the healing. We love in the parts of ourselves it takes patience (perhaps years of patience) to show each other. We love in the spontaneous connections of joy when thing are easy. There is a reason we have had three marriages in our 21 years together- love.

In other places, I am learning about love that is unpleasant, tough, defiant, strong like a boot kicking your ass. There is patience here, too. I am learning to love and respect myself more each day. Learning to dig out the less-than-loving parts of myself as I confront more of my own racism and sexism (got called out about rape culture- felt like an asshole. Lived through it, learned, and won’t repeat the mistake again!).

This song reminded me of what love is. So many things I cannot even describe or comprehend. So many things that are unexpected or beyond my understanding. Love surrounds the demons of life, too.

I’ve nothing more to say or share at the moment (quick post, I said!). It’s just what I’ve been pondering lately on the long walk home.

Big love, fellow travelers,
Joanna :: xoxo

 

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