Tag Archives: family

Gloomily Yours

Sadly, I haven’t been very creative this week. Every time a prompt appears in my feed, I diligently save it in my folder with the intention to write something later. But night after night, later has faded into sleep. Also, I’ve been stressed about some stuff, but I gently remind myself… it’s not that important. Family (including Mr. Gatsby), health, work: those are hugely important. Everything else? Less so. Much less. The news can get me feeling hopeless about the future too, but I at least I only read it and don’t watch it obsessively on TV like many do. That would drive me more nuts. Doubly depressing this week was the weather, turning cold and rainy again, triggering a bunch of migraines. Or one long migraine rather, broken up with meds. Hopefully I’ll get back on schedule soon and be able to tackle the items on my writing to-to list. 😐

FPQ23: I Burn Whole Cities

Fandango provocatively asks…

“How do you manage or deal with stress? Is there a specific strategy or approach that you’ve found to be particularly effective?”

My post title comes from the HBO show Game of Thrones where dragons have been known to release stress by destroying cities with fire. I am not a dragon, alas, though I have gotten vicarious pleasure especially during stressful times by reading A Song of Ice and Fire and from watching the show.

In general, I find that losing myself in a fantasy world of a novel or movie for a few hours is a great way to deal with stress. I do prefer movies over series, or series that have finished, because I don’t want to have to wait for the next season (and these days, that can be so unpredictable), which ends up leaving me at the mercy of people yapping online about the show and giving their predictions. Annoying!

Depending on what the stressful even was, I may wish to talk about it privately, with a daughter or a friend. I’m careful what I say to whom these days though, so as not to end up with more stress from the convo itself. I may write about the situation in a diary for my own clarification. I find the act of writing words on a page/screen to be therapeutic.

For immediate relief, deep breaths work. For a 24 hour period, repeating the mantra that “this too shall pass” helps a lot. If I can’t sleep, there’s always the Valium or Benadryl last resort. It’s really bad not to sleep because then I’ll feel even worse the next day, which will increase my stress. Cuddling my kitty and spending time alone at home usually helps me feel better.

Here are some stress management techniques that are supposed to help but do nothing for me:

1. Exercise. I know it’s good for me, but it makes everything hurt more and I end up with a (worse) headache.

2. Taking a vacation. Way out of my budget and I would be completely stressed about the money I spent.

3. Glass of wine. This is a migraine trigger about 50% of the time.

4. Music. This is tricky because a lot of songs pull up sad memories for me. I have to be careful about music. Plus, Gatsby doesn’t like it. Mostly I only listen in the car.

5. Sex. With a man? This was generally the cause of almost all my stress and giving it up has reduced my anxiety to nearly zero.

Dracarys! 🔥🔥🔥

The Weekly Smile

There was a lot to smile about last weekend when I visited my daughter and son-in-law up in Northern California. It was great seeing them again! And of course I got to cuddle with pupper and kittay. 🐶🐱The kids treated me to a lovely post birthday dinner. We played some fun board games too. And I got to see their wonderful new house!

I’m a lucky mommy. 😍🍀❤️

Backstory

Alt title: Why Use One Word When 700 Are Available?

I wrote a prose poem about “who I am” that was really “where I’m from” a long time ago for a prompt, though I’m not sure if we called them prompts then. It might have been on Usenet, which we used to deride as a sewer, before every other form of social media became awful too. (I still think blogs are the best of the bunch.) The poem was short and not that deep, but then I pulled it up again and fleshed it out for another venue.

I’ve been thinking about Rory’s question (“who are you really?”). It’s a pretty easy question for most people to answer superficially. We generally give answers about who we are in relationship to other people. I’m a mom. I’m a wife, or not. I’m a good friend of so & so, a loyal employee of XYZ Company, yada. We’re plotting our position on axes of family and work, then friendships, maybe next our relationship to interests. I’m a fan of such and such sports team, rah! Or I love to garden, knit, read, write, pull the tails off little blind mice. Whatever.

We tell the world who we are in this multi-dimensional GPS system. Locate me here, in this spot: mom, ex-wife, legal secretary, poet, cat lover, Game of Thrones fan. This is me, right here. What if there are other humans occupying that position? I might have to refine it further. But does this actually even answer the question? Does this explain who I am? Do you know me from these factoids? Could you tell someone about the essence of me from my GPS position?

The other week I was playing a board game with some good friends I’ve known for a long time. It was called ImaginiFF. A question came up: “ImaginiFF Paula were a movie. Which movie would she be?” There were 5 random movies and then Doctor Zhivago, which was obviously correct in my mind for a variety of reasons. Everyone chose it, and this surprised me. I wouldn’t have expected them to know. But they did. And this made me unreasonably happy because most of the time I think people don’t even understand me at all, not even people to whom I’m closest. But I don’t think you would get the correct movie from a bunch of disparate facts about me; you’d have to spend years orbiting my weirdness.

Anyway, here is my GPS poem about who I am via where I’m from. I take the long way around.

Backstory

I am from the Big Apple, take a bite, glitter lights, lemon ice, museums, zoos, art and news, Coney Island hot dogs, Jones Beach sandy sweets, sharp shells stab soft carpet feet.

I am from the place where you pull the blinds, someone’s looking, where you smell your neighbor’s curry cooking, he makes you sweet tea with cardamom, next day Jamaican barbecue mon, the Filipinos have one record, sugar sugar aw honey honey, your father brings home Saturday pastries from the German bakery, “schwartzwalder kirschetorte,” it sounds funny, say it again, and the Japanese girl doesn’t know your words but can show you how to fold paper squares into gentle birds.

I am from the thorny Jersey berry bushes, blackpurple bursts against tanned sunfingers, slipping stones in backyard creek, crick, algae slick, willow fronds sweep redwood table pirate ship, hopscotch sidewalks toss a chip, Sunday French toast sausage brunch, leaves turning orangecrunch, rubber masks hiding smiles fake, the quickmelt of perfect crystal snowflakes.

I am from big city and small town, remain unclaimed, cheer for no team, believe in no crown, blood flows only down, I look out to starless airless zerodark, time past seems tissue-thin, walk back in, an afternoon of bubble toys, uncaring joy, turquoise dresses rhinestone sunlight, just once, golden flash, one more pass, because I am from a yard of girls with summerdrip popsicles, before the apple, before the crash.

I am from disconnect and strife, feudglue of life, mashed crookedly together, a puzzle I failed to see until I broke apart, alone, jagged on my own, and now I know why people stay, bicker low and graceless, get physical redangry splashwine in faces, because they can’t bear the abyss, yes, I missed, I get it all now, too late.

~*~

Three of a Derp [100 words]

So, my likes have been light
And my comments are nil
Cuz I’m going away
To see my daughter and SIL.
But I thought I would post
To the pix prompt of three,
Then I saw I misread…
Oh whoops, woe is me!

*

Posting them anyway, nyah! I won’t include the prompt link, so my post will just float in the WP pool untethered to any other post, just like in the old days. Weird now though.

The idea was to take three photos of one subject in three ways, not have three subjects in a photo, but like whateverrr.

Green-Eyed Lady…

A little blog love for my eldest now, to go with Cee’s theme of eyes. I’m excited for my upcoming trip to NorCal, when I’ll get to see these eyes in person. It’s been a while!

The Weekly Smile

Sharon gave me a lovely early birthday gift last Sunday: tickets to Fiddler on the Roof at the Pantages in Hollywood! This was a mommy-daughter afternoon, just the two of us, which we haven’t done since my granddaughter arrived. So much fun to spend time with my sweet girl! And what a fantastic show!

I’ve seen Fiddler on the screen a zillion times and practically have it memorized. It’s one of my favorite musicals. But the stage show is slightly different. Forex, the part of Perchik, the communist scholar, is much funnier. Actually, I thought the actor who played Tevye, Yehezkel Lazarov, made his lines funnier too. This was apparent in “Tevye’s Dream,” which was totally hysterical. The entire cast did a fabulous job. 💖🎶😀

The Pantages itself is a beautiful, comfy venue, plus it was fun to be in Hollywood. We got to walk down a portion of the star sidewalk, which was neat. When I go to Los Angeles these days, I generally visit my fam and then come right back.

Still smiling! 🎉😀 🎶

Expository [SOCS]

Experiences over things” is another one of those irritating expressions that people parrot mindlessly. I used to see it creep onto dating profiles before I exited that whole expanse of pants. 😛

What does it mean? Welp, let me explain. Instead of buying Mom a nice cupcake-scented candle or a cute kitty tee shirt for Mother’s Day, take her to Tahiti. Don’t get Dad a boring tie for Father’s Day either ~ think of the wasteful packaging! Consider doing something more fun like taking him ziplining over the Amazon. Dads love that! Put the expense on his credit card. 😂

People without a lot of money have always been creating experiences. Family dinners, picnics, BBQs, potlucks, game nights, a day at the beach/lake/park, etc. are all part of normal life for everyday folks. It’s only now that the rich have discovered they haven’t been spending enough time with people who matter that they’ve come up with this absurd phrase. 🙄

Also, for anyone who may be related to me: I still expect the candle and tee shirt.

Mother’s Day is May 12. 🌷

Late Night Quick Draw

Late Night Quick Draw ~ sorry for the oopsy. Rory seems to have deleted or rescheduled his post. Maybe it will magically reappear later. Copy pasta the questions at your own risk!

Season 1

Describe yourself in 7 words?

Funny, serious, organized, reliable, introverted, poetic, neurotic.

What do you find funny?

Yer mom.

Favourite Food?

Cookies.

Favourite Tipple?

Constant Comment black & orange tea.

Favourite Ice Cream Flavour?

Cookie dough.

Currently Reading?

The Essex Serpent.

Last Film you saw [Cinema/DVD]?

While You Were Sleeping.

Favourite Comfort Food?

Cookies.

Ideal Breakfast?

Cookies.

Favourite Music Genre?

Classic rock.

Best Holiday you have had?

Portland with my daughter.

Holiday destination you would love to see?

New Mexico might be nice.

What’s your favourite animal?

Favourite Game?

Ticket to Ride.

Favourite sport [Take part in/watch]?

Meh.

Most Favourite Nursery Rhyme Growing Up?

Pop Goes the Weasel.

Favourite Colour?

Turquoise.

What would be your perfect day?

Assuming I can’t go back in time, just a pain-free, stress-free day would be nice.

A Bridge Too Far

This is the Bay Bridge in Oakland/ San Francisco, California. And it is indeed too far because my daughter lives up there and I don’t get to see her enough, since that’s about 400 miles away. However! Happy nooz! I’m going up for a weekend soon, hurrah, hooray! 😀💖🎉

~*~

Cee’s Photo Challenge