Archive for June, 2014

Destabilized

So writing that post earlier screwed up my sleep, more than usual.  I had barely an hour before I was supposed to get up to get ready for Mass and decided that I wasn’t going to drive on such little sleep.  I finally fall asleep hoping to wake up in time to go to Confession and Spanish Mass.  Woke up about 3:45 and decided Confession was out of the question (it started at 4) and to sleep 15 more minutes before getting up to go to Spanish Mass which was at 5:30. 

Sufficed to say, I didn’t make to either Mass or Confession today.  Bad me.  It’s been awhile since I missed Mass like that.  And it’s been a long time since mental health issues impacted me going to Mass.  But that’s no excuse.  I know better.

Guess what I’m doing next Saturday.

Rules and Stability

Even though it’s 4:35 on a Sunday morning and should be sleeping, I feel more pressed to write.

Rules matter, especially to someone like me who needs boundaries that will be respected since mine rarely were.  I like rules.  Not too many or overly strict, impossible ones but good, clear rules that work.  Not just ones about walking in crosswalks or parking lot speed limits but also ones about not talking with your mouth full or using something without permission.  Social etiquette I guess I’m saying.

So when someone violated a rule and then excuses it (sometimes even using God as an excuse) or doesn’t even care, I am really bothered.  Especially when it is blatant and repetitive by a person.  Especially when someone uses God as their validation for breaking that rule.  I just don’t get it.  It’s mind boggling to me.  Right and wrong matter even in little things. 

It kills me that people think it’s okay to steal as long as what they steal is used to worship God.  No, it’s stealing, which is a SIN and a crime.  God doesn’t condone that.  I still honestly cannot understand how someone can do something like that, excuse something like that.

It reminds of when I was told my sister was having a child out of wedlock and my mother was so excited while she accused me of being an alcoholic for having one beer after I had turned 21.  It’s messed up. 

Rules matter.  Small or big, they matter.  And social etiquette.  If you say you are going to do something, then do it.  Otherwise you are just lying.  If you say you are going to call, call.  If you make plans with a friend, don’t change them at the last minute because you got distracted and made other plans that could have waited.  You just make your friend feel like they’re unimportant to you and that they don’t matter enough to you to keep your promises.  And don’t wait to the last minute to make plans either.  Respect your friend.  He/she is a person, too.

Rules provide stability.  Surprisingly, even with the abuse and neglect I suffered, I had stability growing up.  I was never homeless and we only moved three times.  The first due to family growth, the second due to job transfer, and the third was a result of legal issues of the previous owners that we hasn’t been made aware of. 

My dad had the same job and worked for the same people for nearly forty years.  We always had food to eat, even if my mother burned it or made spaghetti, again, for the fifth time that week.  (One reason I hate the stuff now and can’t eat it.)  I had clothes.

I had stability even with my mother’s threats, the yelling and screaming, the no respect for my boundaries.  My mother may have abused me but she also gave me the necessities.  I may not have been loved but I was taken care of.  I learned manners and how to follow the rules. 

I may not have had the emotional support I needed but I am not emotionally needy either.  I don’t break down if someone doesn’t like me or something I’ve done.  I may get angry but I don’t act like my mother and take it out on others.  Unfortunately, I take it out on myself.

I know this group of people and see how their parents are, even today, and can understand and see how they turned out the way they did.  The mother wonders why  her one child acts the way they do and I can see it’s because of the mother’s behavior.  And the father’s.  I can see it so easily.  And hearing about how they grew up also points out where their parents just didn’t provide stability.  It seemed like the family constantly moved, that the father was wrapped up in certain activities, that the father changed jobs frequently, that both parents were a bit neglectful.  I can see the effect but them I’m seeing it from the outside which makes it easier to see.

Rules and stability matter.  If these don’t exist, or are only partially there, then problems occur.  Short and long term problems.  People crave rules and stability because it helps you feel like things are going to be okay, that you are going to be okay, that things are manageable, that you have some kind of control. 

You feel like life is worth living.  You feel like you can get along with people.  You feel like you can manage the fear and that’s the  biggest reason of all.  Knowing you can beat fear.  Stability silences fear.  It provides reassurance, support.  Rules help you keep that stability.

So stability and rules matter.  They cannot be ignored or excuses or set aside.  They are necessary.  They help us live and live well.

Finding the Same

Or the shame.

This time though, it’s about how I have emotional and physical reactions like I do with my mother.

I’ve come to realize this one person in my life hits several of the same triggers, even some triggers I didn’t know I had.  But mostly it comes down to after spending even a short time with this person I am exhausted and have a nasty headache that lasts for hours.  And the next day I am wrecked.  Like sleeping for 16 hours wrecked.

I started noticing a while back that after spending time with this person I was getting headaches.  I thought it might be allergies because they have pets but I’ve spent time with other people who have the same pets and haven’t felt this way.  I once again spent time with this person and realized that it was this person that was triggering my headaches. They are just so emotionally exhausting and draining to me that I end up with painful headaches.

There is not much I can do about this but it is interesting to realize how other people affect me emotionally and physically.  At least I have ibuprofen for the headaches. 

I know this person has no idea they are affecting me this way and I don’t plan on telling them.  I can even see how they have affected other people in their life.  Just writing about this person is starting to give me a headache.

Poems

Tears Again

Definite tears
This time it’s because you are so low on food that you are hungry but you probably won’t have money for another week, you feel ashamed and judged by the charity people who probably aren’t judging you but you are judging yourself so it doesn’t matter, and a friend that seems more interested in seeing you fail than helping you

Rice is not very satisfying

You feel like the worlds biggest idiot for being hungry, for even wanting food in the first place.  There are kids starving in Africa who are worse off than you.  You should be ashamed of yourself.  You should be grateful that you are hungry and have no money.  You have wealth beyond imagining.  Besides, you could stand to lose some weight anyways.  Nobody likes an ugly fat woman.  Soon you’ll just be an ugly woman.  Maybe dead which would make a lot of people happy.

The choice is a about a half a cup of rice (uncooked) or two scrambled eggs.

Not together.  You don’t want to waste food.  Those are separate meals.  Reducing the eggs to just one would make things last longer.

There’s also a stick of butter but that’s for baking.  Not that there’s any of that happening.  Baking should only happen when you have lots of money and food and a Real job.

That’s what it
Come down
To

A
Real
Job

With Real Money

Because being fired Was All
My
Fault
And therefore should have had another job
Just as soon as I was fired
Forget that I was severely harassed and bullied
Forget I was targeted
It was
All My Fault
Therefore I should be
Over It

Those people didn’t want me eating either. Women with real bodies are
Not Allowed.

Help is only for those they do not have to touch
Or see
Or deal with as actual human beings
Just throw garbage at them and if they aren’t grateful for it, refuse to ever help them again
They aren’t worth it
They are only there to make you look like you care, which you don’t but you plaster on the fake smile and dole out the fake caring to hide your disdain and disgust

The tears have stopped for now.

Still hungry but it’s rice or eggs and I don’t want either
Something with substance would be nice but again, no money
I hate this

_+_+_+_+_+_+

All About You

You take over the conversation
As usual
I am only there to listen
You don’t want to hear me speak
It’s all about you

You make plans then break them
My being inconvenienced doesn’t matter
It’s all about you

You repeat stories
Even when I say I’ve heard them before
You’re always the hero
Like I said
It’s all about you

You complain about finances
Then spend money on impulsive purchases
While I go hungry
Trying to keep a roof over my head
But you only see your want
It’s all about you

You make promises you’ll never keep
Say words I’ll never  believe
Give empty hugs
Close doors behind me as if I didn’t exist
It’s all about you

I shed tears while you glare at
Me
Strong emotions rattle you
You only want smiles and praise
It’s all about you

I’ve come to the point
It’s time
You make think it’s all about you
But I have to think about me

This isn’t a friendship
It’s a dictatorship
And I’m the victim
So I’m leaving

Not that you’ll notice
It’s still all about you

(((So I’ve been on a poetry kick lately.  Which is kind of nice since it’s been awhile since I’ve written poetry.  The first is about my emotional state with regards to the fact that I really am down to just eggs and rice to eat and an not sure about when I’ll next have money to buy food.  The second is about past friends and the way they’ve treated me so it’s a bit of a composite of people and maybe a little of my own past behavior.  I know I’ve done things, looking back even decades later, that I’m not proud of. I just hope I’ve changed enough that I don’t do them anymore.)))

Being Forgotten

I’m seven
Another Friday afternoon
Going to the office, having to call you, again, to come pick me up, pick up S

You say, voice distant on the telephone and not because of actual distance, that you didn’t forget, sounding airy and yet dismissive of me stating the facts
The secretary listening in but not caring, shifting papers, just wanting to go home herself

I don’t figure out until years later that if you could leave me and just pick up S you would

You didn’t want me but I didn’t understand that then
It was you and another baby sister you would pit against me and a father that preferred his computer and TV over everything else and a stepgrandfather who stomped most everyone down, except maybe you and S and K and G but everyone else was just garbage because we wouldn’t worship his lies and hate
Mostly it was about not rocking the boat and having you explode over the tiniest thing

You made sure I was afraid, afraid of you, of myself, of everything

Sometimes I think I’m still that seven year old little girl who just wants her mother to remember her but is aware at the periphery that it will never happen

Abandoned though picked up from the lost and found after being stuck behind a smelly, grubby sweater and held between two fingers as if touching me would infect you with some horrible disease

The stinky sock loved me more though it kept searching for its pair

Dust bunnies cried tears for me but all that dust covered up their caring

Silent walls rattle with your rage but I couldn’t hide from you, fear pressing from every aside

Sophia accidentally hitting me in the nose makes me proud of the one and only nosebleed I’ve ever had because it was something the other kids had done.  I fit in even though I felt and knew I really didn’t.  It was nice while it lasted.

But then I’m eight and another year and the girls have abandoned me as well because boys have cooties which I don’t believe exists so I played with boys instead
They were nicer and treated me better even if they were stupid for tearing the arms off their Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles

There’s still screaming at home and Willow can’t hide and the Killer Tomatoes have vanished and the Odd Couple take psychiatric advice from Bob Newhart while awaiting triage at the 4077th but you still expect the Waltons but have ended up with the Bundys more like the Buckets but without the flowers and accents

And then change and hell and yelling

But that seven year old is still waiting, hoping, barely, not to get thrown out with the crushed milk cartons and moldy bread and the crumpled napkins

The Library Made Me Do It

Well, only because I signed up for the Summer Reading Program.  Yes, my public library is awesome enough to have summer reading programs for every age.

The theme is Literary Elements and you have a card with various genres that you have to read.  Twenty some odd books (24 including an online resource and the party in August).  I’ve already knocked out the online resource (NoveList which you can only access through your library), one Non-fiction, and one mystery fiction.  Woohoo!

So without further digression, summer reads so far.

image

The Dreyfus Affair all told from the point of view of one of the officers involved.  You start off thinking the case is closed, Dreyfus is guilty and then doubts start creeping in.  So much so that an ensuing investigation causes major problems for the narrator.  Picquart, the narrator, is a sympathetic character and when things start moving you really start cheering him on.  You also get introduced to Bertillion, a famous name in the history of criminal justice who ends up proving that “experts” don’t know everything.

A definitely recommend.

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So a juvenile corrections officer ends up dead and everyone thinks it’s the thirteen year old inmate who escaped that did it.  Yes, he did kill him but there’s a nice little conspiracy that has to be uncovered before you understand it’s self-defense.  Nathan, the thirteen year old boy reaches out to a radio personality to prove his innocence.  It’s not just about him but about how society looks at teenage criminals as somehow more dangerous than adults and seeks to punish them more severely than adults for the same crimes.  This book is especially interesting in that it was written when violence committed by teens was on the rise.

A definite recommend.

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Same author as the book above.  You’ve been living under the radar for fourteen years when an FBI/DEA raid catches you.  You walk out the police station before anyone catches who your fingerprints actually belong to and put the plan in motion.  You are now on the run with your wife and son trying to avoid federal murder charged for crimes you and your wife didn’t actually commit.  So you run, staying ahead of the FBI while going back to the scene of the crime to prove you are truly innocent.  You end up involving the FBI agent who is tracking you, the clean up man for a Chicago businessman who is family, and the actual man behind it all, the deputy director of the FBI.  You’ll just have to read to see how it all plays out.

A definite recommend.

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I am currently wandering the stacks just to see what gems I can find.  This lovely piece of historical fiction written by archeologists is amazing.  Sympathetic characters, characters you love to hate, characters you love and cheer for, and a world that maybe different and yet contains so many of the human realities we deal with today: greed, corruption, cult leadership, misogyny, family, friends, hate, love.  Change happens and how you react determined how and if you survive.  And while there is misogyny espoused in the book, there are also several strong women that don’t bow to this garbage and stay true, not just to themselves but also their beliefs and way of life.

A definite recommend.

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I decided to bone up my history of economy and how monetary prosperity came to be.  While the author sets out a decent history and the four elements that are necessary (in his opinion) for economic growth, the author’s bias against religion is blatant though he was willing to concede facts instead of blindly propagating certain myths.  There is also the author’s blatant pushing that money is everything and that people who aren’t pursuing money all the time are idiots.

A recommend, with reservations.

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I thought this would be a good look at kids in foster care through their stories.  There are stories but it’s mostly points out, redundantly, that the foster care system is a mess, that most of the kids in it are considered already to have failed, and that race and poverty are the biggest contributing factors to kids in foster care. The author supposedly had experience as a foster parent but it doesn’t show in her writing. There are some highlights but also some serious red flags into our view of children and how they should be treated.  This came off more of an ageda piece for gay rights than for support of kids in foster care or any encouragement to change the system or help parents instead of taking their kids away.

Not likely to recommend.

These aren’t all the books I’ve read lately but they are ones I’ve read recently and two of those counted.for summer reading.  Plenty of books to read so definitely more updates.

Ratings Guide

A definite recommend
A recommend
A recommend, with reservations
Not likely to recommend
Not recommending
Never recommending


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