Meet and Greet: 1/13/17

Dream Big, Dream Often

 dreambigwallpaper-pinkombre

Evelina and I are Disney bound so that means…it’s the Meet and Greet weekend everyone!!    

Ok so here are the rules:

  1. Leave a link to your page or post in the comments of this post.
  2. Reblog this post.  It helps you, it helps me, it helps everyone!
  3. Edit your reblog post and add tags.
  4. Feel free to leave your link multiple times!  It is okay to update your link for more exposure every day if you want.  It is up to you!

  5. Share this post on social media.  Many of my non-blogger friends love that I put the Meet n Greet on Facebook and Twitter because they find new blogs to follow.

See ya on Monday!!

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Don’t give them what they want.

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Martha Crawford, LCSW, tweeted a series of thoughts about the Trump administration that tell us why we shouldn’t let it make us quake in terror. I know for me, her thoughts brought me some comfort. I know a lot of people are in mourning right now, and scared for their lives. We can mourn, we SHOULD mourn, but never be afraid!

This nation is a big dysfunctional family, and the vulnerable among us — the poor, the middle class, the disabled, those suffering with mental illness, the sick, the old, the very young, people of color, Muslims, Mexicans, women, gay people, and everyone else who doesn’t fit the “straight, white, rich Christian male” image — are the scapegoats of this administration and its sociopathic, very un-Christian leader.     These scapegoats comprise almost all the “children” in this “family.”  But we are far from alone.  There are more of us than “them.”   We can and should help each other, and never let our unloving, selfish “parents” make us feel afraid or helpless.    That’s giving them what they want, and they feed off it to make themselves feel more powerful. Don’t give it to them.

Yes, the shit just got real.   But the sun will shine again.

 

*****

So, listen. He has some power.
And it’s a temporal, worldly power established on a weak foundation — filled with cracks, outbursts, and hubris.
And all the myths and fairytales and scriptures tell us what happens to these kind of leaders.
And this is true across every culture — mythological texts teach us how to survive these dark “cursed” periods and how to undo them.
I’m not saying that his power is insignificant. It will destroy many, but it is fleeting because of its own unstable composition.
This administration will fly too close to the sun, will be brought down by a boy who names the truth, will sacrifice the wrong martyr.
It will transform all those who yearn to touch it into frozen statues of gold.
Its end was already written by the cruelty and avarice, the dominance and divisiveness that they wrote in the beginning of their story.
We can read those folk tales and retell those myths so we remember how to get through.
Befriend an old wise crone who seems to be a beggar, feed a magic animal, hold tight to the blessings of our mothers.
Be kind to the point of foolishness. Tell the truths that no one else acknowledges. Be quick, be clever, be resourceful.
The end of the cursed king’s story is written at its beginning. You need to use your heart and your wits to protect yourself and others.
When we all do that, it will help to bring along the fall that is inevitable. Utterly inevitable.
It’s not if. It’s how long.
And I only know it will come sooner if we aren’t afraid. Angry, sorrowful, grief stricken, joyful, generous, compassionate, and clever.
Fear and bewilderment are the ingredients they need to keep patching holes in their instability.
Feel every feeling. But find safe and quiet spaces for your fear and bewilderment. They feed off of that when they can smell it.
Be not afraid.
Do not become bewildered.
They will destroy others and ultimately themselves.
Don’t feed them your fear.
Don’t eat the fearful poison they want you to be contaminated by, because it will possess you and strengthen them.
That is our most central psychological task through the darkness — to come to terms with fear and to shake off bewilderment.
Withhold your fear from them. Do not listen to the spell that will bewilder and confound you if you are seduced by it.
Don’t eat anything they offer! Not a single pomegranite seed, not a box of Turkish Delight. Bring your provisions with you. Wait for grace.
Be kind to all potential comrades and allies. You never know of if a wounded bird is a powerful ally under enchantment.
We know what to do.
We have been here before. This is really not unprecedented. We have enacted this story over and over and over again.
It’s a story older than the Bible, older than the printing press. Older than our ability to remember these stories of survival and justice.
Whispered into our great great grandparents ears before they fell asleep at night.
We know what to do if we listen to the stories we have told ourselves for thousands upon thousands of years.

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Becoming real.

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I haven’t been posting as much about my recovery or therapy on this blog as I used to, because it’s grown so big and I feel more comfortable posting such deeply personal stuff on my other blog, because it’s so much smaller and has far fewer readers than this one does.

But I’m making an exception today, because of how important I think this dream I had last night is.

My subconscious mind seems to be revealing the most to me lately through my dreams. Later I tell my therapist about them, and we interpret them together. Sometimes though, the meaning is obvious to me and lately it’s getting easier for me to figure these dreams out on my own.

In my last therapy session, I was asked what my real self is really like.   I wasn’t able to answer very well.  I felt like I had to make things up.  Chair Girl (my inner child, who I have “sit” in a chair in my therapist’s office, which is how she got her name) is so elusive, and only comes out intermittently.  I know she’s shy and has the potential to be very loving, but sometimes it’s hard for me to capture her essence, who SHE is.

Last night, I had another beautiful dream that answered this for me.

I owned a strange object.   It was a cat made out of black stone.   But it wasn’t actually black stone.   The person who gave it to me explained that this object had once been a real cat, who had been killed during a plane crash (but whose body somehow remained intact) and whose owner, a man from China, had the cat’s body cryogenically frozen and sealed, much like those services that do taxidermy on dead pets and send your pet back to you stuffed and fitted with glass eyes.  But this cat wasn’t stuffed and it didn’t have glass eyes.   It was hard as a rock, heavy, and shone like stone.   Its eyes were sealed shut, forever sleeping.

I loved the cat anyway, and felt sad over what had happened to it.  I  liked to just sit with it and pet it, even though it was no more than an object and could never respond or give back any love.  I sometimes wondered what he had been like, and I named him Max.

One day something very strange happened.  I knew Max had been dead for years.   But on this one day, while I was holding it in my arms, pretending it was a real cat, I heard a small mew.     I looked down and saw that Max was trying to open his eyes.    I almost dropped him in shock, but instead set him down gently on a chair and watched in amazement.   I wasn’t sure what to do.   This was scaring me.  But I was frozen in place.   I couldn’t stop watching.

Max began to transform.   His cold stone body became a beautiful coat of reddish brown tabby fur, and his eyes, now opened, turned from black to brilliant blue.   He started to breathe.  He looked up at me and meowed loudly.  It occurred to me he must be part Siamese, with those blue eyes and loud, raspy voice.

I asked him if he was hungry, and he immediately jumped down and walked regally toward the kitchen, as if he understood what I was asking him.  He kept looking back at me, meowing.  I happened to have some cat food and he ate as if he’d been starving.    My shock having worn off,  I felt love overflowing for this tiny animal.   I picked Max up and held him and listened to him purr contentedly.    He was so tiny but so beautiful and I realized that somehow, it was my love that had woken him up and transformed him back into a living, breathing, loving cat.

One of my favorite stories as a child was The Velveteen Rabbit, and I think it’s because of the universal truth in that story:  that being loved is how one becomes real.

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Max is the real me.  By learning self-love and self-empathy, she’s waking up and making herself known. She’s becoming real.

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I feel sick.

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I started watching part of the inauguration, and couldn’t continue.   Trump as POTUS?  The reality of it makes me feel literally ill.   I just can’t stand to watch.    I think  many Americans feel the same way right now.

I don’t agree with violent protesting, as happened several blocks away in Washington, DC today, but I certainly can empathize with their sentiments.  I feel pretty angry and disgusted with my country right now.

On the bright side, First Lady Melania is absolutely gorgeous, and I like little Barron.

I also am really starting to appreciate Barack Obama now.  It’s so sad that he’s no longer our president.

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Simple Kind of Man (Lynyrd Skynyrd)

Southern rock at its best.   This has always been my favorite Skynyrd tune.

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Trump and his impressionistic speech: HPD or NPD?

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I’m engaged in an interesting conversation in a Facebook group about Cluster B disorders. Someone raised an interesting point about Trump possibly having HPD instead of, or in addition to, NPD.   His “impressionistic speech,” which is a symptom of HPD, is a clue, but based on his inability to accept blame or criticism (and not just projecting it onto others), that seems a lot more NPD.

I’ll just let the actual conversation speak for itself because it raises some interesting points.  (There were more replies, but I’m leaving out the ones not relevant to the topic raised, which is Trump).

Someone in the group posted this question (who I will call Participant A) :

Random thought: Donald Trump initially appears NPD. But that fucking hair… the orange tan, and the impressionistic speech…makes me wonder if he’s not HPD, or at least comorbid. The one HPD I’ve known was basically a narc in a series of crazy outfits. And she sounded JUST like him with her wild lack of details, inappropriate sex talk and constant attention seeking behavior. Thoughts?  

Participant B:

I think a person with HPD might respond to all of the criticism a little differently than he does. He seems to hold tight to his grandiosity, a person with HPD would be more wounded and emotional. He ignores the fact that nobody wants to join his inauguration and even lies and pretends It’s sold out, inauguration dresses are sold out, etc. That looks like NPD to me.

Participant A:

The HPD I know did this exact thing though. I worked for her and while planning a conference she made me send out an email to supporters saying we had this amazing star studded line up (we had no one) and the tickets would soon be sold out (we had like 10 people signed up so far). As an NPD I personally would be too nervous to publicly fail, so I would opt to undersell the event, in case no one showed up, to save myself embarassment. If people show up, bonus points, because I look humble. She just threw wild shit out there with seemingly no concept of reality. Constantly contradicted herself too.

Participant B:

People with HPD are supposed to be more uncomfortable with criticism and more uncomfortable not being the center of attention. I think people with NPD have mental blocks up that sometimes don’t allow them to see when they’re disliked or unpopular. Maybe on a subconscious level they get it. I think a person with NPD might be better able to answer this though

Me:

I think it’s easier to have ASPD than NPD — NPDs and BPDs care very much what you think (even if they never admit it) while psychopaths and ASPDs generally don’t give a shit.

Participant B:

People with HPD are more easily influenced, they typically blame failure on others. He doesn’t even admit to any failure existing.  Superficial emotional displays or a little more agreement with the majority might be more HPD too…

Me:

That’s a good point. He could also be a somatic narc — with extremely tacky taste! Cluster B disorders often appear together, so it’s entirely possible he could be both NPD and HPD too. But no way is he *just* HPD — like Participant B said, he doesn’t admit to failure — ever.

Me (replying to Participant A):

I’ve heard that HPDs have “impressionistic speech” but I never understood exactly what that means. Can you give an example of Trump using this kind of speech? I’m not doubting you, but I’m just not sure what it is. Sort of a vagueness? Because he talks and talks and never actually says anything. Or it’s like word salad and makes no sense. Is that what you mean?

Participant A:

Earlier today, “It’s going to be Huge! We’re going to turn things around”. Ok, Donald, how are we going to do that? ” We will make America great again!” Lol. Literally just now: “My cabinet is so smart. We have the highest IQ of any cabinet ever assembled.” Oh ok, based on what fucking data? No explanation.

Definition and example of impressionistic speech: “A term used to describe a person’s speech when it consistently lacks in detail and emphasizes emotions. For example, if you asked someone what they thought of something, and they said that the thing was “just wonderful, fabulous”.”

Does he not consistently fit the bill, or what?

Me:

Ah, I see. My NPD mother (who I always suspected was HPD too) talked that way. “Everything was fabulous!” “Oh, I feel marvelous!” A lot of hyperbole, but no substance. At all. Yes, Trump does talk exactly like that and never can back up his grandiose claims. And people think he’s pissing gold.

HPD doesn’t seem to be that common for some reason. Or it gets diagnosed as BPD or NPD.

 

 

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I finally signed up for Obamacare, was pleasantly surprised, but now Trump and his band of goons wants to repeal it.

obamacare

WARNING: RANT AHEAD.

Last year I didn’t sign up for Obamacare because I didn’t think I qualified based on my income being so low, and North Carolina is one of the states that hasn’t expanded Medicaid to low income people.  But that’s only part of the reason I didn’t sign up in 2016.  I also just felt triggered, irritated, and emotionally overwhelmed by the whole process, and frankly, I’m also morally opposed to the fact we as a nation do not have single payer healthcare like every other freaking industrialized country.  So I guess there was also an element of rebellion in my refusal to sign up, which is stupid, because what would have happened if I got sick or in an accident?   I was lucky I did not.   I already knew a year ago I’d have to pay the $695 fine when I do the 2016 tax returns, but I assumed it would cost me a whole lot more to get Obamacare, if I even qualified at all.   After all, it seemed like everyone was whining about how expensive Obamacare is, but it’s mostly people who hate Obama (I’m not one of them –but I’m starting to really appreciate him now, knowing the Ooompa Loompa is taking over in 3 days.)

So anyway, back to my health insurance saga.  I make a little more money now than I did a year ago, due to being promoted to a semi-supervisory position a few months ago (and being up to my ears in work).  I just wanted the whole health insurance thing to go away and acted like it would if I just did nothing at all.  I  just didn’t want to deal with it, but in the back of my mind, I knew that the penalty for 2017 would be close to $2,000 if I didn’t sign up.  I also knew I was living on borrowed time, because inevitably the day will come when I will need medical care and not just a first aid kit or an aspirin. But I kept procrastinating because I just didn’t want to deal with the unpleasantness.

Today I got a letter in the mail reminding me to sign up by January 31 if I didn’t want to pay that ridiculous fine for 2017.   Personally,  I think it’s outrageous that people are being fined for not opting to line the health insurance companies’ coffers, especially if their states haven’t expanded Medicaid to low income people, but what are you going to do? You have to do something, even if it makes you feel like throwing up in your mouth.    Why does America think “the market” is so damn wonderful anyway?   I think corporations are just as, if not more corrupt than the “big bad government.”   Their ONLY reason for existing is for profit. In my opinion, healthcare is a right, not a privilege, and every American should have access to it and not have to pay some insurance company.    But no one complains about corporate America, they only complain about “the government.”

So anyway, back to the letter I got.   After reading it, I said to myself, what the hell, might as well sign up right now and get it over with, since I have to do it anyway.  Why put off the inevitable?  There were a lot of questions to answer but it turned out I am eligible for Obamacare and get most of it paid for!  My premiums will be only $29 a month!.  Maybe I had it all wrong and could have done the same last year and avoided the $695 fine.  I also feel better knowing I have health insurance now, even if it’s not the greatest plan in the world.   Now I can stop worrying about what I will do should I become sick or have to go in the hospital.  Not having insurance at my age is playing with fire, and I’ve been all too aware of that, and tried to ignore it.    Now I can cross that off my list of worries.   For now.

Because here is what really sucks.   Now that I’ve finally signed up, Trump and his band of goons are talking about repealing Obamacare.   Now that I finally have it, I’m afraid I’m going to lose it.   If I do lose it, will people still be required to pay fines for not having health insurance?  I know there’s no way I could ever afford the premiums without the generous tax credit Obamacare gives me.  The idea of fining low income people for not having the money for the full price of health care (especially now that most companies no longer offer health insurance to their low-wage slaves) makes me feel sick to my stomach.   It would be appallingly unfair if that actually happened,  but I wouldn’t put something like that past this godawful, compassionless, immoral administration.

I’m worried about something else too.  Paul Ryan, who is a “Christian” (Catholic) Ayn Rand devotee (how is it even possible to be both?) wants to privatize social security.  Oh, no, we can’t have that!  It helps people!  It has to go away because “it’s an entitlement.”

EARTH TO PAUL RYAN:  IT’S NOT A FREAKING ENTITLEMENT!   I paid into it since 1976!    I’m really worried that as I enter my later years, which isn’t that many years from now, that all the money I’ve paid into social security for FORTY-ONE YEARS will be for nothing, and older folks like me who don’t have savings, investments, and 401Ks (because we never made enough money to have those things) who had counted on social security to be there for us when we finally were too old or weak or sick to work anymore,  will just have to just keep on working until we drop dead, or become a burden on our grown children, who will be forced to support us.

There’s also talk about privatizing Medicare.    If either of these programs the previous three generations enjoyed and that (until recently) seemed immune from being tampered with by Stupid Party, get the plug pulled on them (which “privatizing” essentially means), there’s going to be a whole lot of really angry and frightened people.  WHAT IS THIS?    LOGAN’S RUN?  Or even…SOYLENT GREEN!  (That 1973 movie about a dystopian future sounds a LOT like what’s starting to happen here, and the year it takes place in? 2022! Only 5 more years!)

Why not just off everyone too old to work.  Riiight, let’s just let the old and the sick DIE OFF.  They don’t contribute anything anyway!  They’re not PRODUCTIVE! Who cares if they SUFFER?

I think if Obamacare is repealed or especially if Medicaid and social security are privatized, there will be civil war.   Hell, maybe a civil war or a mass uprising is what needs to happen so people stop being sheep and keep voting for people who don’t represent their best interests.    The squinty eyed fat man with NPD and his pack of sociopathic stooges really have me scared.   I’m  getting reeeeally close to hating this country and wishing I could just leave.  America, the nation that promised so much and  that everyone used to want to live in, is turning into a third world country.   What’s happening here is the way third world countries are run.  Why’s Trump so worried about our borders?   Who will want to come here?

Am I the only one who feels like that?

Anyway, I have health insurance.  Finally.  For now.

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My son just sent me this T-shirt!

My wonderful son finally sent me the Christmas gift he’d promised — and I’m wearing it right now!   I love it!

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The card that came with it is hard to read, but it says:

If there were more people like you in the world…

—there’d be more smiles like mine! (inside)

He also wrote this little note and my heart leapt with joy:

Mom,

I am very proud of all you are doing.  The world needs more people like you that have experienced pain, hardship, and loss so that they don’t have to suffer what you did and still come out with a heart as strong and bold.   Love, your son, ___

 

 

 

 

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Monday Melody: If I Had a Million Dollars (Bare Naked Ladies)

I heard this this morning and I just can’t help smiling every time I hear it.  So cute and witty, even if it’s just stoner rock.

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We desperately need a hero like MLK today.

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These words are just as relevant today as they were 50 years ago — maybe even more so!

 

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