That’s life

Life has returned. My memories are back in the closet, not forgotten, but filed away. Time to move on.

Writing is going well. Not enough time to do it lately. Seems it’s all run this errand, pick that up, and of course the ever present necessity to get to the gym and move so I don’t hurt so much. Haven’t even cleaned the house in I don’t know how long, and it shows it.

Today I’m keeping to my life commitment. Heading out with my brother to the comic book shop. Say hi to the guys. Hang out. Talk. Be a part of the world. Got to keep in practice with that, at least a little bit, or I’ll forget how to do it.

Been feeling very alone and lonely. The two don’t always go together, but right now they do. In the wake of my reaction to the news about L, I feel friendless. Want to change that, but I find my physical condition works against me. Last time I tried to schedule a get together with potential friends I woke up with laryngitis. Shit happens. Just the excitement of looking forward to getting out and meeting people can make me ill. Do that enough times to a potential new friend and they lose interest in pursuing a friendship. Seen it happen.

And I don’t like this double life I live. The reality is, my health isn’t good. I do fall ill very easily. I’m not strong. But then there’s my gym life: the nods and notice I get while working out. Maybe they’re not all dyin’ to do me, but they do acknowledge I work hard (beginning to think that most of the smiles I receive are ‘she’s a tough old bird’ type of thing). Most people drop out after an hour of exercise. Most people are shocked and think two hours is extreme. Oh, god, I could never make it for two hours! Then they look me up and down, decide that maybe not all physical strength translates into slim, tight bodies, and put me in that ‘healthy as hell’ category, which I do not deserve to be in.

…At least my physiotherapist understands.

Speaking of, looking forward to seeing him next week. Realized a long time ago our sessions are half physio and half talk therapy. Why can I do that? Why am I so open with someone like him, yet so closed if I see someone called ‘therapist’? One of those mysteries about myself I’d like to solve. …I need him on both levels right now. Despite my physical movement, I’ve got some pain building up. And although I don’t know what I’m going to say, I do know I’ll probably bring up L.

Been a few months since I’ve been able to get my hair done. Upshot is, I’ve got grey showing. Maybe for the first time in my life. A couple of silver hairs by each temple. I’ve looked at it closely in the mirror. It’s not unattractive. In fact, I find myself more distressed by the shaggy outgrowth look I’ve got right now than those grey hairs. …Don’t think I should wear my hair this long. It looks strange on my face. A 20 something tousled hair style on a 50 something woman. But what am I supposed to do? That’s my hair. It just looks that way, naturally. Hope to get it all spruced up before September.

Have not worn my orthopedics, despite the cooler weather. Do not want to wear my orthopedics. My cheap tennis shoes (with added insoles) are lovely: they give me plenty of support, and they don’t bite my feet at all. Plus they were a quarter of the cost of my orthopedics. But I’ll need to get back on that. No use in doing it in August; this entire country goes on holidays. Another thing to write in for September.

Bought some cheap eye gel and dark circle remover. Cosmetics that promise the impossible. But I figure any improvement is an improvement. And I’m guessing it helps to just go through the motions. Applying lotions, massaging them in – that’s a form of self love. I care enough about myself to do this, it says. Or at least that’s how I see it. So, I’m doing it, and hoping it will buy me a few years of looking not so tired and worn out.

Have let myself off the hook for tomorrow’s exercise. My bro is on me to read the final chapters in his book, one of the comic book guys leant me a run of stories by George Romero, and of course I have my own writing to get to. Today will largely be shot, between traveling to and fro and all the time spent visiting. Tomorrow is my make-up day: do the writing I should be doing today, finish up those comics, and start reading my brother’s work.

Wish these things didn’t always pile up on me.

…Wish I could just say no like so many people have said to me. I’m too busy with my own shit. Deal.

And that takes me right back to who I want to be. Do I want to be that person who’s always too busy for friends? Do I want to show the people I care about that I care about them, or will I just perpetuate that lip service shit my family gave to me? It always comes up for me at times like this. And I get angry, and pout, and whine that it isn’t fair, isn’t fair, isn’t fair…

But that’s life.

This doesn’t bode well

I’m 51. Almost 52. Yet, just like any kid, I couldn’t help but feel that rush of excitement yesterday as my very last language class drew to a close. Six glorious weeks of holiday. I know I’m bound to flip, and at some point complain how could I ever have thought this much time off was a good idea? But that ain’t today. Today I’m still a kid, off of school, no more homework or doing things I don’t want to do.

Yippee!

Had the treat of finding another online comment from (yep, you guessed it) my uncle, who seems to yank my chain an awful lot. Props to him; he did it again. I’d posted an article from a German news source that discussed a study of sexual aggression in male apes. It suggested that sexual aggression and intimidation runs in the species; similar behaviors were noted in various monkeys, orangutans, and apes. It also suggested that, humans being closely related to our ape cousins, this trait was present in male humans – which led us down the merry path of ‘rape is just something men do’. Sugar-coated, I’ll give you. But it lay there in the midst of this article’s words, splayed legged for the world to see and jerk off to. Naturally, my comment while posting said article was rather scathing. And how did my right-wing, privileged uncle respond? “This picture isn’t of an ape.” Yes. A stupid comment on the accompanying picture of said article. Nothing on the content. Nothing on my thoughts. Apparently, this was his only way to discount what was being said. You’ve got the wrong picture on top of the article. If that’s wrong, I’m not even gonna bother reading it. Maybe that wasn’t his intention. But it read that way.

The only reason I see for him doing any of this is to needle at me. I just can’t figure out why he feels the need to needle me. I don’t even live on his continent. His life never need intersect mine. And how many times do I need to say thanks for the money loan? It was paid back, with interest. Doesn’t mean I have to shut up with my opinions.

You didn’t buy me, uncle.

I replied, and told him I didn’t write the article and perhaps his comment should be directed towards the news agency that published it.

Play rehearsals went well. Learned we’re booking five performances. Two locally, two in Amsterdam, one in Leiden. That’s so far. Hope there aren’t too many more. If I have to cough up for money towards a venue, plus travel costs, plus perform – well, that’s asking a lot, isn’t it? At the same time I’m glad. Glad I’ll have these opportunities to shine. Glad it won’t be a lot of work for just two nights and then sitting around doing nothing for the rest of the year. I’m puzzled as well. These people think they can do local plus out of town gigs? What’s the draw? Or are there just so many theatre goers in the Netherlands that we’re guaranteed a certain amount of people? It’s not even like they’re active online. Their sites – both the dot com and their FB page – rarely changes. I saw them struggle to draw more than 40 people last year, and that was locally. Well, I’ve not been invited into the inner circle yet. The Grand Poo-Pah has not granted me access. So I don’t know who’s doing what, or why they’re not doing some things that seem obvious to me.

Want to get in some rehearsal time today while my bro is at the comic book shop. Not that I need much. I almost got my lines memorized from last night’s three run-throughs. Then it’s dishes, per usual. My bro did a bunch of dishes yesterday while I was busy, but then he dirtied as many dishes as there were earlier by making dinner. So I’m left with a large sink full of dishes to do all by myself. Again. Hoo-rah. Then it’s off to the gym, for an extended-extended work out. What I’ll extend, I don’t know. I just know I want to burn, burn a lot, and burn hard. After that, if I can lift my arms and keep my eyes open, I’ll see about puttering with my outline.

*sigh* And the festivals are beginning. The endless outdoor music and all sorts of fun festivals. No money for entrance fees, so I have to wait for the freebies. But I hear the fireworks at night, celebrations with thousands of people. It’s kind of lonely, hearing that as I lay in bed trying to get to sleep. Gee, listen to that. All those people out there having a good time. All that fun and life and music and activity. Usually I’m too tired to worry about it for long, but in those brief moments before sleep takes me I can feel very alone.

Diving into writing will only reinforce that aloneness. I know that. Going to do my best to get out every day, no matter how hot the writing is going. I don’t want the next six weeks of posts to be about feeling like a ghost, or having no friends, or being disconnected. And I do want to get my work done. So a strict half schedule must be adhered to. Half a day, every day, get the fuck out of the house. Go to the gym. If I have to do the gym every day because it’s the only thing I can afford that’ll get me out for a couple of hours, alright. Then I’ll super push. Go to rehearsals. Take a walk. Look through the charity shops for cheap clothes. Try to meet up with acquaintances. Say hello. Chill. Ask them how they are, what they’re doing.

Anything.

Hm. Two hours officially into my holiday and I’m already finding ways to keep myself occupied.

This doesn’t bode well.

The Ghost in the Window

It’s good. With the right actors, it could be great.

Even the typos I found in my read through didn’t detract from the suspense in the story. Corrections were quick – been thinking about it for a week (there’s another life axiom: the longer you think about a storyline, the less time it takes to get it on paper).

Of course, if the script is performed by a bunch of hacks it’ll come off as cheesy. Or it could.

My brother gave me a weird warning yesterday, before I began reading. He told me to stay calm if anyone labels this as a black comedy. I told him there are zero comedic elements in the script and I can’t imagine anyone turning this into a comedy. He said I’m writing (again) about subject matter that makes most people nervous, and when people are nervous, they poke fun – therefore, it’s a possibility. Yo – write down a number and put enough zeroes behind it and you can call this script anything you want. Do it in full clown face; I don’t care if you pay me enough.

…Okay, not exactly true. I’d never go and see it if it’s done in any other manner than the way I wrote it.

It would not prevent me from writing another one. Which is good, because now that I found my way into these thrillers/suspense/horror stories, I know exactly how to make them happen. Two words: what if. What if this happened, what if that were true – what if can get you damned far in a story, and makes things very interesting.

And yeah, as I was sitting last night watching tv, I heard something that triggered those two words in my brain. Mmm.

Bad news: Scrivener sucks. Can I say that louder? Scrivener SUCKS. It can’t insert (MORE) or (CONT’D) in dialogue breaks. That’s a killer for me. No matter how much the designers of Scrivener want to say that using (MORE) and (CONT’D) is old fashioned and going out of style, they’re still vital stage directions in theatre scripts. Not including them in any software designed to write scripts is stupid. It’s akin to not adding in an auto page number function. And naturally, it’s not something you see until you get to the very last stage – printing. Grrr. Have another trial software – Fade in – to try, but I think I’ll just head out to Celtx and get it typed in on that software. Getting to that point where I need it done and out, so I can concentrate on my next script.

Started reading the book my director lent to me on the Night Witches. It promises to be an interesting read. It’s a role play game book, not a novel or non-fiction piece – something I’m not really familiar with. But it’s got suggestions for character types and scenarios, set-ups for interpersonal conflicts and intrigues, and I think it’ll expand my storyline in several directions. Certainly, if I get stuck on how to move forward, I think this book will be invaluable.

Just had a reminder pop up on my screen. I’m meeting people today to be social. Oh…yeah.  In five hours I need to be downtown, alert and aware, and preferably not looking like I just got out of bed. Bummer. Really don’t want to get out of my pj’s today.

Right. Arrows out. Remember to ask. Look up. Smile. Don’t overwhelm with a long monologue about my work. They are people, too.

So – breakfast and shower. Keep my head about me and my hands off the keyboard. Then a nice little metro ride downtown. A nice cup of coffee or glass of juice while I talk to people who might spark another story or character idea for me. A nice afternoon out of the house, and I’ll come back twice as refreshed and ready to work. Nice. That’s what I’ll aim for.

I’d like to be more than just a ghost this summer. I don’t get outside and do summery things anymore. And I never tan or stay outside long enough to get color. Part of that is my problem with too much heat. Part of that is my work. But I do feel a ghost, watching others get that warm brown skin, smelling the BBQs, seeing people sitting outside, hearing the music and laughter floating in thru the windows…. And I’m not quite sure how to stop being a ghost and start living again. Will forcing myself to sit outside, baking in the heat, take care of this sense that something is missing in my life? Or will it just make me feel lonelier, as I sit on a park bench by myself, speaking to no one, watching others have fun?

I could deal with my ghostly existence if it meant my work was getting noticed. It would offer me some sort of balance: okay, I don’t go outside but my work is winning me accolades. And I know I don’t do real life very well. Nice to dip my toe into once in a while, but I don’t want to go swimming in that sea every morning. Outside looks great, but I know once I’m there the heat is oppressive, I begin to sweat, and all I want is to find a cool place to chill. Better to view it from here. Better to look down, and observe.

That’s me; the ghost in the window.

Salty, like me

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Salt. It’s not a nice smell. That’s not something we think about often; our language talks about ‘the salty sea air’ in novels like it’s wonderful. It isn’t. The sea stinks of fish and rotting seaweed. But it isn’t ’til you wake up in the middle of the night and smell the salt on you from dried sweat that you begin to know exactly how putrid salt actually smells. Then your nose wrinkles, and you don’t think about the sweat or the nightmares that might have caused it, you think salt. That’s all you smell. And it’s awful.

I suppose I should try to get used to it. This nightmare. I don’t even want to delve into what my brain might have cooked up for me in dreams; my waking reality is too far over the edge the way it is.

Anger woke me today. Same old, same old. I really got a problem with my family. Ain’t that loverly? To be so screwed up on the Alpha that your Omega passes by while you try to figure out what went wrong back at Alpha. Saddest thing is, they don’t care. I predict that if I dropped over dead right now, the only tear shed in the family would be by my older brother who’d be doing it because he felt sorry for himself for not getting to see me one last time. They wouldn’t care if it had been hard on me, they wouldn’t care how much it hurt. Only how their own little castles in the air get affected – now that would trip their triggers. I should borrow a hundred bucks from one of them and never pay it back just to make sure they have some reason to bring me up when I kick it.

Not that any of them would lend me a hundred bucks.

And I’m angry that yet another week has ticked by with nothing from the fucking director with the theater group. It’s not fucking Anna Karenina; it’ll only take a goddamn hour to read – two, if you’re not that great at English. If you didn’t want to read it in the first place, say fucking so! Say “Sorry, I don’t really have time” or “Gee, I’m not really the person you should hand this off to, sorry”. I’ll get it. I’ll move on. But to say you will, to string me along for MONTHS now and give me nothing but a carrot on a stick, pisses me off.

Shallow goddamn vipers.

As for my work, the changes have been made. Typos corrected. A line pulled here, a line inserted there. It’s as comprehensive, smooth, and fluid as I can get it without outside help. Today marks the beginning of The Great Send-Out. I’ve just enough anger to get over my anxiety about sending the script out. Oh, and Goddess, please! Let just one theater group say they’ll do it. They can be from bum-fuck nowhere, just let me hear back from them before the local theater group meets, so when the director stumbles around and gives me yet another excuse I can oh so cooly say, “It’s okay; I’ve got a group producing it right now” and just saunter away. That’s all I ask: the opportunity to for ONCE in my life give a little of that bullshit back that I get heaped on my head day in and day out!

I thank my love of cartoons for getting me through the days lately. Every time I feel lonely and alone, I imagine cartoon tumbleweeds rolling thru the room. It makes me smile, even thru the loneliness. As usual with people who feel lonely, I’m having a difficult time reaching out (terrible circle, that). The few email conversations I do have are short, and stunted. What I’d give for a long, drawn out message from someone I know right now! But everyone’s on Twit-o-sphere, everyone uses emojis, and no one seems to say anything about what’s really going on with them – or if they do share, it’s all bad, all negative. I’m so negative these days it’s hard when I hear my friends sound down. What can I say to them? I see the world as pretty shitty these days, too. I have no magic wand, no silver bullet, no cure-all.

Life sucks, and I didn’t ask for it.

That makes me angrier than anything. That I’m just here, without my consent or approval. That I’m forced to live inside this body – this fucking diseased body that wasn’t right from the get go. That I’m sentenced to go through this life.

This hell.

Didn’t go to the gym yesterday, and my attitude shows it. I’ll go today, despite it being Saturday. Try to burn hard enough that my brain releases endorphins and tricks me into believing things aren’t quite so bad, at least for a little while.

I feel old, and cynical.

Nothing to do but wait and see what happens. Yesterday a fellow student came to class with the flu. She had to sit next to me, had to push her used tissues to my side of the table, had to cough in my direction, lick her fingers and touch the papers she passed to me – in short, she seemed to do everything she could to ensure I fell ill again. I’ve had a bleeding headache since about 3 yesterday. Last night my throat felt raw. …Maybe I’m ready to be ill again. It’s a ready made reason to hide, and I do so feel like hiding lately. Just go away; you’re all assholes and fuckers, anyway. I’ll come back out when I rebuild my shell.

Which brings me back to salt because it seems like that’s the shell I’m building up. A salty, crusty outer layer. How fitting. My new work is coarse, and graphic. The things I’ve imagined writing about…the things my mind keeps turning back to, time and again…these are not script ideas for the local group. They’re not script ideas for family groups or church groups or school groups.

They’re salty, like me.

What a strange life it is

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I miss my blogger friends. Those that I developed a relationship with outside the blogging world. They’ve all scattered, now, and our communications – no matter how much I try to keep them going – are grinding to a halt. Or that’s what it feels like. And it makes me terribly sad. I’ve lived long enough at this point to know that people drift in and out of your life. Time, circumstances, geography – all have a part to play in who’s in and who’s out of your circle. My friends’ circumstances have changed: new jobs, new opportunities, new lives. Some are doing better than others. But all of them seem to have put blogging behind them, for now. And me right along with it.

Oh, self pity party! Let’s break out that tiny violin.

Life goes on.

I’m wrestling with a 94 page document – that’s how large the script has grown. The online software I’m using is struggling to keep up. I’m struggling to not lose my patience with the online software. It becomes quite an afternoon of grunting while I format – my computer fan kicks in (the computer equivalent of a grunt) as the icon on my screen spins, and spins, and spins. I harrumph and grunt, in equal measure, wondering if my system has frozen, hitting more buttons than I should because no, I’m not patient at all. Argh! This is where I want need an assistant. Come in, finish the formatting because I’m too damned antsy, and get a print out, please!

Tomorrow I make a pilgrimage down to the comic book shop with my bro. More baking is needed; and I hope to high heaven that the people who weren’t there last time are there this time. Oh, the zingers I’ve heard, the taunting that’s been reported – ! I’ve got to get treats to the second owner before I become responsible for the splitting up of the only comic book shop in Rotterdam. Plus, I got a free comic sent to me the other day. Something I put aside because it was marked for ten euro. Free. It’s a super rare preview comic featuring the work of John Kricfalusi of Ren and Stimpy fame. I recognized his artwork right away. How it got over here in Rotterdam, shoved deep into the indie bins, I’ll never know. But it’s mine now, all mine.

Does that warrant my marzipan creme bars, or more blueberry muffins?

I’m looking forward to heading to the shop this time. I didn’t know, at first, what these guys would be like. My brother only ever talks comics with them: artists, stories, chronology. And that’s fun, for a bit. But unlike my brother, I’m not obsessed with the Marvel Universe. You wanna talk Milk ‘n’ Cheese, or Johnny the Homicidal Maniac? Then you’ll get me on comics all day long. But mention Captain American or Doctor Strange and I begin to tune out after a while. J finds me a challenge. He likes to pride himself of knowing a lot about comics – and he does, in the Marvel Universe. But I’ve thrown him some curves. Made him look stuff up on the internet because he’s never even heard of it. He thinks I’m crazy, searching out hard to find black and white independent comics. I tell him about the stories and make him laugh. It’s fun. But it’s not the only thing we talked about. I learned more about J last time than my brother ever knew about him. What he studied in school, his home life, his thoughts on current events – he’s almost as much a verbal magpie as I am. So I’m looking forward to more conversation, maybe with a few more people. All that talk about stuff other than comics irritates my brother. He says I distract the owners from their work. But J heralded the news about my script with glee, proclaiming that good stories can be found anywhere – even a comic book shop. That naturally got me thinking. The built in geek jokes to be made. The situational comedy that’s already present. If I’m honest, I’m going as much to study the guys as to talk with them.

Oh, the danger of being friends with a writer! But who knows? 🙂 I’ve already got ‘comic book shop’ written down on my list of script ideas.

My bro, as always, is giving me 100%. Read the script for me? Sure. Pay for some software so I don’t have to use an online program? Sure. Pay to print up the script? Sure. Pay to send it out to theaters? Sure. No hesitation, no wondering if it’s worth it. He’d even help me pick apart the comic world and work as my advisor so I get my references correct. And when my work is finally performed, my brother will pay to get us there (if needed) and sit in the front row, center, laughing loudly and being the first to shout ‘author’ at the end.

Goddess, bless him.

Meanwhile, on through the slow process of editing. Gotta get back to the gym, too. Been saying that every day since I stopped writing, but I have yet to achieve it. Same with Dutch. I really should pick up my books and do a bit of reading. Watch a bit of Dutch tv and listen. Instead, I’m wallowing in time off. The only reason I change out of my pj’s is because it’s cold and my sweat pants are warmer on my legs. I’m playing games, watching tv. Still smoking too much, and finding I don’t care other than the fact it means I need to head out to the coffeeshop to restock.

This is my life; what a strange life it is.

I wouldn’t have it any other way.

Simple Simon

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1 bottle of cough medicine, 2 gallons of phlegm, and 10,000 facial tissues later…

You know the saying about the straw that broke the camel’s back? Well, I had one yesterday. It wasn’t a straw doing in a camel, though. It was a shirt doing in my wardrobe. Just one too many things on hangers – down it came, collapsing in on itself (I’ve got – or had – a cheap fabric wardrobe). I broke the bleeding bar. No fixing it. So off my bro went on his bicycle, down to the shops when they opened, looking for something that would fit the tiny space I have. Within 2 hours the doorbell rang from the delivery guys. Gods, I love living in this city! Of course I told my bro to go cheap – we’re still scraping most months. So it’s a flat pack thing, and my bro, hero that he is, spent the day putting together stuff. It’s only half finished, and my clothes spent the night on my bedroom floor. Yeesh! Guess what I’ll be doing this afternoon.

I am almost well enough to make an appearance in public. Almost. I still sound like I’m going to drop over dead from this cough, and I really wouldn’t want to put anyone through sitting next to me for more than 15 minutes. But I’m not sleeping all day, my throat only hurts after a prolonged coughing spell, and I really am filling all those tissues now that the worst of it is over. Good thing, too. My long over-due hair appointment is coming up on Wednesday, and I’ve got to make it. My roots are holding me hostage.

It’s taken days for me to calm down off the ‘confrontation’ with my eldest brother. I still think up nasty things I want to shout in his face, but they’re coming less often now. Spent time reading up on narcissism and how it affects people, as I usually do after a confrontation with my family, to try to help me calm down. Somehow, taking one of those quizzes to see if you’re a survivor of narcissistic abuse helps ease my tension. I guess it’s just the affirmation (again) that I’m not wrong or stupid or insane for feeling the way I feel.

What I really want is a psychological judgement on my family. Some international psychological court where a person could come, air their grievances, and hear from a panel of learned professionals that no, you’re not crazy or wrong, and no one should have ever been treated that way. It’s all their fault. I’d like that. Of course, I know I’m looking for absolution of my own problems. I want to hear I’m just a scarred individual doing my best. I want to hear how no one could come out of a childhood like I had and NOT be scarred.

Man, the shocked looks I’ve received when I describe some of the neglect I suffered.

All of that helps. It helps to hear people tell me my childhood was fucked up. I used to get angry about that. I used to defend my family and my mother when someone pointed out the neglect, the double dealings, the manipulations. Now, I crave hearing that.

Unfortunately, it doesn’t help with the day to day pain. Just that deep seated disappointment I feel so often when watching films or tv. I see those characters talk through their problems. I see parents listen to and respond to their children. All that stuff that never happened for me. All those areas that are so fucked up in my history. It makes me sad. I used to think all that was fantasy, completely made up stuff, until I met a few people who actually had loving and supportive families. I’m jealous of their better experiences. But it’s a jealousy similar to having a crush on Brad Pitt and being jealous of Angelina Jolie. An intellectual exercise. I know I don’t have a chance in hell with Brad Pitt. Being jealous of Jolie is silly. Similarly, I’ll never know what it’s like to have a loving and supportive family, so being jealous of people who do have that is silly, and I know it. I look in from the outside like a kid in front of a Christmas window display and think gee, it must be nice in there. But there’s no way I can get in. No way at all.

All I can do is build the best support network I can on my own. It’s rickety and weird, bits of socialization built on interactions with doctors, shop keepers, and anyone who’s willing to talk to me. I don’t do it well. But I’m trying, and telling myself that counts for something.

It’s all so scary. Opening myself up to new people. Chancing getting burned again. Putting my foot in my mouth time and again. Doesn’t help that I’m in a new country again. New social rules I’m not familiar with. I don’t know how to act. What to say. Maybe more importantly, what not to say. Conversational taboos are not something most people think to include in those ‘moving to a new country’ websites. Some places, you don’t talk religion. Others, you don’t talk personal problems. I moved from a country where the norm was to hang with people at their homes, because there was nothing to do and everyone was poor, to a country where you don’t get invited into private homes until you make that inner circle. And I’m still poor. So hearing about going this place or that, inviting people to parties or dinners or whatever and knowing that I’d have to pony up quite a bit of cash to make any of it happen is just bleeding depressing. Hello!? Do I have to spend cash to make friends?

Ugh.

Where’s that easy friendship of childhood? It never seemed to take much back then. A hello, then do you want to -? and if the answer was yes, you had a new friend.

Simple Simon. That’s what I want.

All I Want

I am deeply depressed. And angry. And wrestling with yet another headache.

The bee-yotch in my water aerobics for ancient bodies who always fucking gets in my goddamn way told me to ‘let op’ and yelled ‘ow’ when I accidentally half landed on her foot in the goddamn fucking pool because she’s too goddamn fucking lazy to lift her goddamn fucking feet and fucking move at a decent fucking pace. I did NOT hit her square in the face and I think I deserve a gold fucking star for such incredible restraint. The instructor played Toto’s ‘I miss the rains down in Africa’ and I started to cry because I miss Ulla so fucking much. My brain isn’t doing ANYTHING in Dutch anymore. I can barely remember ‘hello’ and ‘how’s it going’. I’m sick to death of these goddamn fucking headaches.

Thought about putting a personal ad out there. “World’s loneliest and most un-lovable woman seeks friend to hang out with. Absolutely no country and western fans. Absolutely no Trump fans. Must be tolerant of smokers and tokers. You’re either poor like me and enjoy pizza and bad films, or rich and willing to pay my way. You don’t get upset when I say ‘fuck’ every other word. You don’t judge, but take me as I am – sometimes manic and sometimes depressed. Good sense of humor absolutely necessary.”

Wonder if there’s anybody out there who’d respond to that.

It’s honest. That’s about all I can say about it.

And yes, I told my bro I’m more down in the dumps than usual. He’s well aware of it and doing his damnedest to lighten my load.

I’d like to just sit and rot today, so that’s pretty much what I’m gonna do. Smoke. Play games. Fuck off. See if maybe I can get my head straight so I have a slim chance of actually making it to my language lessons this week.

Maybe there’s tumor in my brain. Maybe that’s the cause of all these fucking headaches. Wouldn’t that be nice? To be told that yes, there’s a physical reason for it. Hmph. I just ain’t that lucky. I know it’s stress. I know it’s ‘all in my head’. Ha fucking ha. Fuck you.

Doesn’t help that everyone in the fucking pool turned around and looked at me like I just landed from goddamn fucking Jupiter when some AC/DC came on by accident and I whooped out and said ‘leave it on!’. Fucking hell.

Fucking OLD goddamn fuckers. Gimme a fucking break. Not one of those people could be born before 1940. That means they were all pretty young in the 60s. So why are we listening to shit like ‘chirpy chirpy cheep cheep’ and Frank Sinatra? How about some goddamn Jimmy Hendrix or Led Zeppelin? Or even some Golden Earring – the ONLY Dutch rock band to have any hit in the rock charts? No. Lame goddamn fucking music! How the hell is anybody supposed to fucking feel good when you play lame goddamn fucking music the entire time?

Fucking just kill me, why don’t you? It would be less painful.

Still not over this blind rage bullshit. Obviously. The people I don’t want to kill right now are limited to less than 5.

I’m not sure if I count myself among them.

Run. Hide. That instinct is very strong in me right now. It’s the only thing I know for sure that will keep me from hurting anyone.

Wibbley-wobbley. See the ever-tilting woman loose her balance over and over again. Marvel at how far she falls.

Goddamn it.

…….Such a long pause there my screen saver activated.

This sucks. I’m getting hungry for breakfast, finally, but I don’t know that I can motivate myself to get up and make anything. Why bother? I’m fat, so I don’t actually need the calories. And food…continuing this bullshit…I don’t know. Wish I could just turn it all off. Not die, just turn the world off. Make everyone and everything freeze for a day or two or twenty. Go away. No more talking, no more noise, no more people telling me this or that, no more words I don’t understand. Quiet.

Peace.

That’s all I want.

Lonely

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Blank page syndrome.

I know the only way to get past it is to begin. Put something down, no matter how crappy. Not so easy to do today. Keep asking myself what’s up and all I get is silence as an answer. Oh, I’ve bitched at the news already. Gone off on the assholes of the world. But behind that bravado there’s ..nothing. Emptiness. With just a hint of tiredness.

Pulled up the script and just stared at it. Put in a page break for the next act. Set the scene. Then I pulled a blank. I know where I want to go, know what I plan on having happen. But I can’t write it. I’ve typed in six opening lines and just can’t go on from them.

I feel stuck.

While I’m pleased I’m no longer itching to commit violent acts, I’d rather feel something other than this blah washed out sensation I’ve got right now. Maybe I’ll curl up and take a nap.

Maybe not.

Aloneness is crashing in on me again. The lonely part of it, anyway. So much of what I do demands solitary time. Usually that’s okay. But when I need something other than that, life gets tough. I haven’t spent enough time cultivating social activities. Then suddenly all I can register is how alone I am. All the time. Hours and hours of aloneness. Hours and hours of not speaking to anyone else. No wonder I talk aloud to myself so much. Got to talk to somebody, I guess. Maybe I should have gone to class this morning. At least it would have been something, even if I just sat silent through the whole thing. I would have at least been in a room of people. Unfortunately I also know that being alone in a room of people can be even worse than just being alone by yourself – another one of those double bind things in my life. As the saying goes, better the devil you know. For me that’s voluntary solitary confinement. Social situations throw too many unknown variables into the mix.

Meh. Maybe I’m just asking myself to do or be something I’m not ready for today.

Maybe I’m creating a situation to give myself an excuse. An excuse to have sugar, to smoke, to fuck around and do nothing all day – you fill in the blank.

Friday. Got two things to do today. One, get my lotto ticket. Two, buy coffee milk. Snoresville. Short errands, going to the same places I always go. Just run basic life program 204; that’s got all the instructions my brain needs to get through today. Guess I better find something original to throw in there or I might die of boredom.

Goddess, where is my brain? Where’s my willpower? Where’s my energy, my interest, my anything?

I have rolled a stubby-assed little cigarette. Yuck. Don’t really want to smoke it, yet I really do want to smoke it. Been doing this once in a while to keep the headaches manageable. I do not find it pleasant.

Nope. Not the same without a little marijuana in it.

For all I know this is the beginning of a RA problem. My knees were hurting yesterday off and on, and cold weather is forecast to come in this weekend. Any time my RA flares up my mood goes down the toilet. Wonderful side effect. And no, I can’t tell the difference between a RA down and a depressive down. Feels pretty much the same to me. Generally I don’t cry on a RA down. Generally.

I did have a big sugar hit yesterday, too. So maybe this is the downside of that.

Maybe. Fucking hell. That’s one word I’d like to permanently remove from my vocabulary. Seems it’s always coming out of my mouth or flowing from my fingers on the keyboard. I suppose that’s indicative of my lack of self confidence.

Well. Set ’em up and knock ’em down. I’ll head off to do my errands. Not exactly the social I feel I need, but I’ll take what I can get. Come back and tackle some cleaning here at home. There’s plenty of it. Watch something to try and lighten my mood. Not worry about writing or bills or followers or friends or language. Ha! Like worrying is a choice. It isn’t with me. I’ve got better at handling it, better at calming myself, but worry is never a choice. It’s a thing that happens to me whether I want it to or not. I always hated my mother when she told me to ‘just put it out your mind, stop thinking about it’ like I could ever do THAT. Don’t you think if I could do that I would? Do you think I liked making myself vomit so much as a kid out of fear and worry? Do you think I enjoy being such a wibbley-wobbley basket case as an adult?

I don’t. Which is why I keep going. Because if I just gave up like I want to, then I’m really giving into it. Really allowing it to take over my entire life. I may constantly feel like I get re-set to square one, do not pass go, do not collect $250 – and I do – but that won’t stop me putting one foot in front of the other. No matter how insane it feels to me to keep doing it.

And it does feel insane.

Which is also a very lonely feeling.

Vomit

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Still no word from my friends, though I did read about the internet hack so maybe it’s just a matter of time. Maybe they sent out messages to me and are waiting at their respective homes, thinking ‘why haven’t I heard from Beeps in a few days?’. Not much response on my last post, either, and I’m telling myself similar things; the web is down, people are busy, I wrote it at an odd time in the day for me, etc. Figures. I have loneliness problems and the Universe just seems to mirror that and shoot it right back at me.

My head’s finally cleared, though. I’m out of writing mode and back to responding like a real human. I hear what people say and see what’s going on around me. My old doubts have crept back up on me too. Been thinking my script really isn’t all that funny, or good, or anything. That big L I generally feel floating somewhere around my forehead is lit up with neon – “Loser“. The odd thing is, it feels like I’ve come back into my old self. Like that manic fantasizing, positive about me person is just a fake. A costume I put on once in a while. I can wear it, it looks good on me, but it feels wrong. In the end, it feels wrong. It chafes at me.

How odd to say I feel better even tho my head is doing a number on my ego again!

Rain and cold weather are coming. How do I know? My knee hurts. Yep. Turning into that old cracker in films that gimps around, looks at the sky, and announces rain. How’d ya know that, granny? My rheumatism is actin’ up, child. The knee doesn’t lie. Oh, lovely! Maybe I should buy a corn cob pipe, too.

Hell.

My very cute physiotherapist made the comment last time I saw him that I was ‘a young person stuck in a body that has an old person’s disease’. Been this way for a while. RA took me down in my mid 30s – and when I say took me down, I mean took me DOWN. If you see me roll my eyes or hear my exasperated sigh when someone points out one knuckle on their finger that’s affected and painful from RA that’s me thinking ‘oh, poor you!’. I. couldn’t. move. Bed ridden for – well, if you added up all the times I was bed ridden, probably for about three to four years of my life. Three. to four. years. Years. Years asking my brother to help me get up. Years calling for help in the bathroom because I couldn’t get up off the toilet. Years of needing help feeding myself, dressing, do anything that a normal person takes for granted. Down. All the way down. For about 4 months it got in my jaw and I could barely chew.

Yeah, I feel trapped.

And you know, it’s not something I can easily get other people to understand without coming off as the world’s biggest downer. You think YOU got pain; let me tell you about painSo I stay silent most of the time. When I do talk, I hear the same shit I hear every single time I bring the subject up: but you’re so young! Young my ass! YOU get in this body for a few days and tell me how young you end up feeling. Oh – and see if you can stop yourself feeling depressed, too.

*sigh* I was told on Thursday that 51 is still young. Is it? Is it really? Because I remember my folks at 51 and they weren’t young. They weren’t doddering grey haired people, either, but in no way were they still young. Been thinking that maybe the Dutch as a people tend to live longer than I’m used to seeing, and maybe that’s why I keep hearing this stuff. If they’re used to seeing people live ’til 80, 90, or 100, 51 IS still pretty young. But I’m used to seeing people die by the time they hit 70. To me, 51 doesn’t leave me a lot of time.

Maybe it’s just that illusion of youth that seems to follow me no matter where I go or how long I live that’s garnering all these comments. But it’s weird. I hated getting slighted for my age when I was younger. You know the types of comments that can do it: you’ll understand when you’re my age. You’ll change your mind when you get older. And now I’m older. And I still hear things that make me feel slighted. Sorry, but when I tell you I’m bloody disabled with this fucking disease and all I hear in response is ‘but you’re so young!’ it feels like you’re negating what I just said. That my RA can’t be all that bad because you think I look young. I’m sure it’s not being said with that intention. But that’s what it’s starting to feel like.

My rheumatologist and my bro are the only ones that really seem to take the disease seriously. Then again, my rheumatologist has seen my blood results and my brother’s been the one helping me on and off the toilet for the past 16 years. They know. Anyone else, meeting me on a good day…Well. I was a consummate actress at one point in my life.

Blah, blah, blah. Old age and rheumatism. If that’s all I can write about, I really HAVE turned into an old woman.

Finally walked in and joined the gym near my home. No excuse to not get exercise now! I took that away from me. Even if there’s a foot of snow on the ground I can hop the metro to the next stop and the gym entrance is right there. Maybe I’ll break my gym cherry and go in this morning. Sweat in front of an open window. That’s bound to bring some stuff up. *rolls eyes*

Like I haven’t been vomiting up my issues all morning.

Kuiper Belt

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Loneliness. It’s beating down on me today. My own damned fault, of course. Just got off Fuckbook Facebook. Looked at all the posts my family and friends have been putting up for the last week. The bullshit memes. The angry declarations. Oh, there were one or two people I checked who were still the sane and thinking individuals I remember them as. But many were not. And it occurred to me that maybe they were never really the sane, thinking individuals I perceived them to be in the first place.

That thought made me feel lonelier than ever.

My first reaction was an old one: rock. I rock in my chair. It’s a comfort thing. Did it a LOT as a kid; I mean almost all my spare time. Tried to hide it as a teenager. Closed the curtains, did it in secret – like I was masturbating or something. Did my best to rid myself of the need to rock. Yet…Yet I still need it, time to time. Still need to hold myself in my arms and bang my back against a chair. Don’t know quite why.

I should be feeling pretty good. Got out on a walk today for fresh air. Joined the gym. Finished formatting the script. Even thinking about trying some Dutch language drills later on.

But I feel like a lost little girl. Like my family has forgotten about me. Like I’m in one of my nightmares from childhood, when my family denied they were my family.

I don’t know these people.

I realize that’s partially my fault. Certainly, I haven’t kept up my side of communications. Then again, I make no secret of the fact that my family often triggers me, and usually it’s in my best interests to NOT communicate with them. Double bind. Talk, and get triggered. Don’t talk, and feel left out.

Naturally I won’t even consider that they should get off their asses and try to communicate with me.

…*sigh* So. The play. Found an online cloud based formatting software for free, so I tried it out. It’s…formatted. To some standards. I’m not sure it’s theatre standards. But it’s something. The formatting took it down to 24 pages. Don’t know if that’s going to be enough. May have to bulk it out. But I checked and double checked, thought, checked some more, and decided I’ve just got to bring it to the group at this point. Find out how long it is with a read through. See what everyone thinks.

And of course I have the play material based on my dysfunctional family on one hand and my real live dysfunctional family on the other. Synergistic disparity. That’s what I’ll dub it. My ability to allow my play family to have epiphanies about their lives – I can’t do that with my real life family. I can’t make my oldest brother understand how disgusted I am over Trump (yes; he supports that asshole). I can’t snap them out of their ingrained, narcissistic reactions. I want to. Desperately. So I take my longings and give them to my writing. Unfortunately, it doesn’t change anything in real life. And sometimes I wonder if my flights of fancy don’t feed this unsettledness that creeps up on me regarding my family. If my continued investment – at least in my mind – of “saving” my family from themselves doesn’t keep me stuck.

That rubs raw.

Almost like my shoes rubbing my feet raw. Yes, I wore them out walking. Yes, I warmed them up before I walked and I walked carefully and not too fast or forcefully or anything else that could, in any way whatsoever, make me wrong or responsible for the raw spots on my feet. Goddamn it! My trial pair gave me none of this gripe. I wore them out of the shop the first day and never bloody took them off. But these! From day one, they’ve been hurting me here or there. Wear them in. Break in the leather. Allow them to stretch. I have HAD it. I think after THIS long and so many fucking adjustments to the fucking things that I can say that. Fix ’em, make ’em right. What, did you mix things up and make these for someone else’s feet? Sometimes that’s what I think: that they used the wrong moulds. And naturally it’s up to me to call the shop, get in there, convey all of that without blaming anyone too much or coming off like a bitch.

Fuck.

I don’t like being grown up. Can I say that? Well, tough, I just did. I don’t like having to take the high road. I don’t like having to do things that make me nervous or make me feel bad about myself. I don’t like feeling like I always have to keep putting myself out there, time and again, no matter what the fucking consequences and never lose it, never cry, never give up.

And yes, all of that is being grown up to me. And keys. Lots of keys. ‘Cause grown ups have lots of locks to open because they own lots of stuff.

I don’t have a lot of keys.

And I usually don’t feel very grown up.

…And I’m having a real hard time today. Don’t want to cut myself any slack.

This is the point where I should turn it around, right? Find something to calm myself. Find something to reach for. Problem is, I am reaching. Too far. To Jupiter, and beyond. Can’t stop the manic fantasies. Which unsettle me even more when I force myself to come down and frankly assess my own life. Ugh! The crap I find there!

I’m hanging on. Kinda. Asked a friend to tell me I’m not a terrible person. Telling myself I’m not a horrible person. That I’m a little out of whack because I haven’t exercised properly on a regular basis this last week. That I’m a little fried from writing so much.

Hard to hear when you’re out beyond the Kuiper belt.