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The life of leisure [Oct. 10th, 2014|06:17 pm]
My doctor put me on bed rest this week. Sounds good, right? Well, given that I need to keep my feet above my heart, it means I have to do many tasks upside down. Which is harder than you think it is. Yesterday was the day he decided whether to admit me to the hospital or not, and I got a reprieve! Yeah! No hospital! But I do have to cool my jets with an extra round of anti-biotics.

People have been very good at taking care of me. I realize that I am blessed in this way, because many of my friends do not have that in their lives. It is a strange magic of exchange, how aid comes to find you when you need it. How we give aid when it's needed, even if not to the same person. I still struggle accepting it. Honestly many of my friends now just show up and deliver food, and noodge me. It warms my heart.

I think that it is easy to help and hard to receive it. And it is also hard to give it in a way that doesn't lessen the other person. The helper always has the higher rank. I think that back when I was just starting my D/s relationship with Deedee, it helped me to receive. The help was given as service, the receiving was my part of the exchange. And in some ways receiving help is humbling. You get it that you cannot do it alone. That was different, and so I needed other lessons on how to receive, when you re not a goddess accepting offerings, but instead a fragile human who has needs. In this last year, so many have helped me. They loaned me money, they painted my house, they fed me and kept me and stayed up all night patching my floor in underwear.

Laying around all day, especially after Bunny Borealis' passing, has given me the time to think and feel. And most of all to reconnect to silence a bit. I am often so busy that I lose my connection to the world, to the gods, to my communities, to my magic. Yes, I do have my moments of just watching crap tv. But I also listen to the birds, and have people come over. It's been lovely to reconnect.

SR came over and shaved my head for me. There is something odd about staring into the mirror and recognizing yourself again. Oh, hi! Haven't seen you in a while. And as this happens, I can feel my world slow down, the leaves turn on the grapevine, the songs of the birds. It's a reminder that loneliness is about missing yourself. The connection to the current. I'm slowly returning to the person I was before I got sucked into full professor vortex and social overload.

And yes, I often throw tantrums that I am sick of sitting with my feet up and I want my Bunny right now! Mostly inside, but sometimes not. I have to let all of this happen, and all of this heal. And like everything else, I don't get to do it on my own.

I wish help to all those who need it.
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I did it! [Jan. 5th, 2011|06:44 pm]
[Current Location |Thermalia]
[mood |hopefulhopeful]

I did it. I finally sat down and called all my doctors today so I could start out my sabbatical by getting my check-up/baselines. If I know that I need baselines to help me stick with taking care of myself, then I should get them. And not wait until I think I am better to go get a check up. This way I can see improvement. Or not.

And as usual, I am scared to go see them. Having a lot of foot problems that are reminding me of my dad. My feet look just like his. Yes, the ones that got cut off. So I really do freak out at those moments. But I have to remember my nightmare of the demon chasing him, and me yelling at him from the porch and turn around and face it. And in the dream, when it got him, and it turned and came for me, I took a deep breath and stood up tall and walked out into the street to meet it. Then I woke up.

I'm not waking up from this. And yet, I will have to just keep turning to face it, the family curse. After two or so years of not taking care of myself, working too hard, grieving too hard and sacrificing my body to burn too many candles, I can't expect my body to be in the shape it was when I went into that.

I also hate doctors. But I am greatly relieved that the podiatrist I'm seeing comes recommended by a friend who knows about medical stuff. So that is a big load off my mind. Also, I am going to have a friend go with me.

My doctor and I have go rounds about the mammogram. In a good-natured kind of way. But I looked at my lab papers and there is a note that said "You owe me labs from 2010. Get them. Please." Smiley face.

It beats sitting around and worrying about my toe all the time.
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All soup's eve [Nov. 1st, 2010|08:49 pm]
[Current Location |Thermalia]
[mood |exhaustedexhausted]

I'm not sure what to say lately. I'm so tired of grading, but I need to really keep up with it if I'm going to take a couple days off when BnJ is here, and go on this retreat in December. I'm trying to skip out two days before our grades are due, so I really need to be done grading by the time I'm off to Spirit Rock.

I'm going to a queer vipassana retreat. Yes, it is silent. But it is still nice to be with queer folks. And after this semester, the idea of being silent for 6 days sounds so wonderful, I can't even begin to imagine it.

Feeling pretty lonely lately, locked in my world of work. And trying not to let myself get freaked out by the holidays. I do not have the dead altar up. Seriously. They are not happy. I will cook for them tomorrow. I had hoped to have people over, especially since this year has seen the death of two fat activists. It felt like I wanted to have that community over to remember them. But I just can't do it. I'll make a small pot of soup, and maybe a symbolic batch of fry bread. It makes me sad when I can't celebrate them the way I'd like. But there is just no time for me or the dead.

Yes, I realize that the point of this whole thing is to remember that life is short. And honestly, I cannot even go there right now. It just makes me cry. This is not how I want to go out. And there are times I wonder if I'm ever going to find a way to live with this schedule that doesn't hurt me so much. Obviously, not working an overload ever again might help. Of course there are times I wonder about what the rest of the short life is going to look like. And thinking these days that it might be way shorter than my chances for anything other than cold sheets and a warm heart. Most of the time I'm ok with that. And sometimes I'm not.

Yes, life is short. And it is exceedingly precious, even when it sucks. And there's scuba diving! And my friends! And things that go fast! But today it is a struggle, and the memory of when it was a struggle but there was also a place for my heart to rest is a lot to hold. So now there is only the rest I can make on my own. And at times I am just too tired to do that. Oh yes. And the memory of what it feels like to be a rock and have a rock sometimes just feels like a rock.

It's not that I can't do it. It's just remembering the times that someone actually wanted to be there for this part feels very far away. So here is my suggestion to all the people who have a partner who want to tell me how to get through it. Stop sitting in front of the computer. Spend at least one whole minute looking at the person you love and letting your heart be full of them. Then go over and kiss them deeply and passionately and tell them that you love them. That will make me happy. And let me know that you actually did it.

Because me and my dead have a message for you. Time is precious. Be here now. Don't let love go unacknowledged for even one more second. Because you just don't know when it can slide from your fingers. And it is the thing the dead miss most. Besides homemade tortillas and chocolate.

I can feel them nodding behind me. Maybe it's time to give them something to eat. But this seems to have made them happy, as if it is that thing they keep trying to whisper across the veil. Love is everything.

So to all my friends out there, lovers or pals, I love you. My life would be less for your absence. I hope you are with me for a very long time.

Yo' Aniy'ma, y'all.
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Finally, the answer to the question [Aug. 26th, 2010|01:09 am]
[mood |accomplishedaccomplished]

Trying to get ready for the school year to begin. I'm teaching an overload. Something I'm sure I'll regret later on. But with sabbatical coming up, I decided that I wanted the money.

Since I have spring off next year, I'm going to go to Alaska. I think I'm going to go on a cruise. I have this dream that I'll get some of my friends to go with me, and I'll have a fantastic time seeing glaciers and wildlife, before it all melts. I was talking with Rahzone today and she said I should bring my scooter for excursions. It sounds really amazing. So that is part of what I want to do.

I also want to go on a dive trip somewhere warm. Hawaii, Mexico. I'm open to ideas, as long as it is not too expensive. Diving is expensive to start with. I also hope some friends can come on that trip as well. But these are definitely motivations.

I think I'm going to have to put pictures up of reefs and scuba divers, and of eagles and orcas and bears. So I remember why I'm doing this.

Did I mention that my courses are all packed? It's going to be a tough semester.

Travel scares me. You would never know it the way I travel. But it really really does. It is pretty damn hard getting around when you don't fit into seats. Not being able to walk very far and being in pain complicates things even more. Being a giant bald freak actually doesn't seem to have as big of an effect as most people think it would. People are either terrified of me, or fascinated. It makes for interesting discussions on public transportation.

I was going to go to all these conferences as things, but I decided that I wanted to do this instead. And it's kind of nice to make that kind of decision for a change.
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Toe Woe [Aug. 23rd, 2010|11:23 am]
Off to the doctor's for an infected toe. I have absolutely no idea of how it got infected. None. The scuba toe is just fine and has almost fully recovered. I even went swimming the other day.

Hoping that this does not continue the interference with swimming, since it is such a crucial part of maintaining my health and mental health. I am very tired of this.

It also does not help that I'm worrying about my diabetes and my dad and his amputations, and all the other scary little things that like to come out and go bump in the night. Meh.

I just want to swim. I haven't even been able to try out the new silicone fins yet. Grrrr.
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Victory! [Jul. 19th, 2010|11:03 pm]
Pony is now a certified open water diver. Woo hoo!

And I didn't realize you were certified, Kelli! We need to dive together now. Wheeeeee!
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exhausted [Jul. 17th, 2010|01:18 am]
[mood |determineddetermined]

The very last thing I want to do tomorrow is get into my gear and dive. All day. Then take a test.

I hurt all over. My legs are cramping up. I'm trying not to worry about this too much. Today I was so freaked out that I couldn't do as much of the checklist as I'd hoped.

Trying not to feel as if I do not make it then I have wasted a trip to Hawaii. That really isn't fair to myself and just makes me cry.

But today I put together my own gear. I walked into the water backward, I put my gear on in the water. I learned to roll around and put on a weight belt in the water. I achieved neutral buoyancy. But I could not descend to save my life.

On the bright side, I do not have an earache. And consequently do not dread tomorrow in the same way I dreaded today.

By this time tomorrow I will be a PADI certified open water diver. Or I will be crying in my mai tai. Either way, I will be in the spa. And regardless of the outcome, it has been a grand adventure.
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North Shore [Jul. 14th, 2010|11:17 pm]
[Current Location |Ko'Olina]
[mood |contentcontent]

Today we went to the North Shore of Oahu to go snorkeling at Waimea. It's a big surf spot during the winter when the big waves come through. But in the summer it's a bit more reasonable.

Snorkeling all day. They have a beach wheel chair, and we got to see a girl in a wheel chair use it. It was great! I can totally relate. She swam like a fish.

I have been getting in and out of the water with the help of my cane as far as the waterline. Then with the assistance of Grltrubble and Tex. Today a super hunky lifeguard, named Johnny Angel, drove us across the sand hills to this fantastic spot on the sand bar on his ATV! Whee! Two fer! ATV rides plus snorkeling wonderland equals paradise.

In other words, getting help has been wildly successful. Yes, there is part of me that is sad that I can't really do it myself anymore. But hello! I have no business in the water without a buddy anyway. Oh, how unfortunate. I am no longer able to take stupid risks all on my own anymore.It's hard, and I have this weird habit of trying to run in the sand. What is that about? It doesn't work, btw. But it seems that I am willing to expend any effort in getting into the water.

Johnny Angel also has the best line of the trip. After ferrying me and Grltrubble out to the sandbar, we told him he was a lifesaver. He said, "I save lives. That's what I do." Evidently he's a bit of a local legend.

But the award for style goes to Tex today. She was coming in from shore when a wave picked her up and rolled her right up onto the beach, fins and all. She sat up and gave us the most hilarious look. Then we laughed so hard that we flopped around like a bunch of seals trying to get out of the water. I did finally right myself and climb out. Which I felt deserved a gold medal for patience. In addition, Tex also dumped a pound of sad onto the changing area floor when she took off her suit, followed by that same look. Super winner.

Now we are all beat. And tomorrow is our scuba lesson.
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(no subject) [Jul. 14th, 2010|01:45 am]
[Current Location |Hawaii]
[mood |ecstaticecstatic]

Aloha! I am having such a wonderful time here. Staying in Ko'Olina, which means "place of joy".and so it is.

One of the best places to snorkel is right in front of our resort. It's a shallow sheltered lagoon which is like swimming in a giant tide pool.

I love snorkeling. It makes me elated. I am not bored or feeling overworked while I snorkel. I am not pining for things I do not have. I am not having to deal with issues of size, ability, race, gender, or sexual orientation. My sole responsibility is to not bang into the rocks. Or other snorkelers.

My other job is to be in a state of childlike wonder, both at the beauty all around me and the friendliness of my neighbors.

I'm still nervous about scuba diving, but it's going to be fun. I guess I'll have to let you know how it goes.
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Backing out [Jun. 28th, 2010|07:01 pm]
[Current Location |Thermalia]
[mood |aggravatedaggravated]

Isn't it always this way? I was just about to invite folks over for drinks to celebrate stepping down as chair, and I need to meet with the new chair on Friday to do the update. Not Wednesday. Which is a little bit annoying, but I'll be happy to step down after that. So maybe Friday night instead.

Friday we interview a potential teacher for Psych 001. Then go over all the stuff that she'll need to know to get through the summer.

Feeling very weird today. Working and feeling a little low. I cleaned my dresser off, though. Cleaning my room is one way I have of cleaning my mind, my life. You can usually tell my psychological state by looking at my room. Right now the bed is made, the floors are clean, things are dusted. I can breathe again! But there are bags of little stuff lying around. Stuff from Den of Desire. Stuff from the semester. I'm just getting to the point where I am actually putting things away and moving things out of the room that don't need to be there.

I'm trying to not figure out why I feel this way. That's my goal, to not know. Because when you do not know you are quite a bit closer to the truth than if you think you do. I wish Alfonsox was here, because it would be good to do some inquiry. Maybe I'll ask Fattest when she's done with work.

There is part of me that is really sad about not putting all this down on Wednesday. But also part of me that understands that I can't really just dump it all, like what happened to me. I am going to have to have some real boundaries around this, because it is going to be hard and the new chair is going to actually have tons of questions. Questions I'll do. But I need to not do the work of it.


It is harder to put down than I thought. It becomes a habit. And everyone wants to encourage that habit. But that habit is not good for me. I want to plan my classes. I just got invited to review another article. And I still have that database to work on. As I am typing this, I can hear my research calling me. I can hear the whispers of the new way I am beginning to write as art, turning story into memoir. And even more quietly, I can hear the nearly silent calling of the piano, reminding me that my summer is supposed to be about me.

I haven't had a lot of training in how you put this down. Like the sessions in the Den of Desire, there is this movement out of that connected space. The moment where you and your client laugh, and thank each other, and begin the move back to just being attendees at a conference. It literally feels like I back out of their energy. But there is an agreement, a closing, and then a parting.

At work, there is no agreed upon closing. There is this reaching out, a desperate kind of confusion. The refusal to open the closing. How to exit without an agreement? I will figure this out, just like I have figured out everything else.

I feel like I need to hand something over on Wednesday, and not wait on everything else. I can get together the things that I need to hand over and send them by e-mail. I can hand over advising, with the policies that the department has agreed upon. At least that will be a marker that I am no longer chair of the department.

Then I just need to meet with the adjunct to discuss their observations, and finish up any outstanding advising situations. I have already said that I'd help with JT's computer and hold his hand. But I'm done doing the negotiating for equipment.

The budget is done. Everything we ordered has been delivered. I need to write an e-mail requesting for a particular budget structure to the Dean and then that is finished. The schedule is the chinchilla that needs constant grooming. But once this new course is in place, I can hand that over, too.

I'm realizing it is not clean, like opening a circle or leaving a client. It is the fine extrication of each finger and toe from a web of responsibility and connection. I am backing out of a social role, and all the requirements. No longer the heavy, the mama, the mediator, the advocate. All the things that make the world run smoothly, but that no one ever notices.

So yes, this is still my last week, and that is how I need to think about it.
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