Wednesday, March 29, 2017

End of March Obsessions.

I'm long overdue for an obsessions post.  Not that I haven't been obsessing about things, but I've been... side tracked.  Believe it or not, school takes up a lot of time.  And a lot of the creative energy that normally goes into obsessing and writing has been redirected toward chemical equations, dire climatological straits, and maths.

A lot of maths.

Who knew, when I started a degree that goes against the very nature of the other two degrees I already have, that I'd be pretty stunningly and regularly working like a dog.

But I digress.

Obsessions.  This song.  I am digging hard on this guy.  (Believe it or not, I discovered him on VH1, lol.  In Norway the music channel still actually plays only music videos.  It has not yet been infiltrated by bad reality series or serials). The rest of his album is a good listen, too.

The new iPad.  But here I have a problem.  Over the past year and a half or so, I have been graciously given an iMac and a laptop or two (or three, technically, but that's a loooong story rife with self-destructing screens and spinning rainbow pinwheels of death and a very obvious series of technological mutinies) and am uncomfortable even considering getting a tablet.  I mean... at this point, I think I have enough tech to keep me plugged in. ... Errr... I hope.  Also, if I get another Apple product, I will never hear the end of it from my beloved father.

Brandon Flowers.  This is an ongoing obsession à la Bon Iver or Matt Damon.  Still, The Desired Effect is so hammy and circa 1987 that it tastes as good as it sounds.

Every year, this time of year, I recall that not only was I raised in ACC-land, but I also went to a major basketball uni. Perhaps you've heard of it: I'm currently lusting after this circa 1987 sweatshirt from my alma mater, the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.  Tar Heel born, Tar Heel bred... etc.

In the meantime, I just finished The Lost City of the Monkey God: A True Story.  And it was good- but here's the thing: it wasn't good for the reason you'd expect it to be good.  I went into it hoping for a modern day Indiana Jones-esque adventure.  I mean, it's not every day that we run across a 'lost' or 'missing' city in the wilderness- let's face it, there's just not that much that's lost or missing these days, not on the scale of a city anyway.  And the book is good for that aspect, but it's great for it's discussion of Old and New World contact and disease.  I mean, by the time I put the book down, I had to fight myself from googling leishmaniasis because I didn't think I could handle the image return.  (I just did- here's the wiki page if you dare- it's pretty tame but I'm still avoiding the image situation).  There's about a four-chapter span that blows 'disease as a symptom and inheritance of colonization'  out of the water (all the while the author goes through his own harrowing experience with it).  So much so that by the end of it, I was beginning to wonder about my own travels and intersections.

Late as always... I've been watching American Crime Story: The People v. OJ Simpson on Netflix.  Sarah Paulson and David Schwimmer are gold.  Certainly worth a watch- it more or less (definitely less) fills a void that finishing The Jinx left behind.

This song, too.  Nina, oh Nina.  Sing it.

And I think that's probably enough for now...

But seriously... leishmaniasis.  It's keeping me up at night.

Saturday, March 11, 2017

Sometimes You Just Want a Hamburger.

The days when I am really sick of myself, I just want a hamburger.  This is how I can tell exactly how sick of myself I am- by how badly I want to sit down and eat a hamburger. Preferably one with sautéed mushrooms and onions, cheese, and maybe even some bacon.

Today I want a burger and fries.

The thing is, no matter how great I seem.  Scratch that.  No matter how great I am, no matter how great I actually feel,  I'm never really as great as that.  I never feel comfortable, so to speak.  And to be honest, I don't think that's a bad thing.  Comfortable is unfamiliar to me, and dangerous.  It's a state of stillness that I cannot afford nor will I ever.  Comfortable is confusing.  I think it's okay to be uncomfortable and I think it's important to be challenged.

It's been a while since I was really sick (not of myself, just sick in general).  It's been a while since I starved myself for real.  It's been a while since I actively did terrible things to myself because of a deeply entrenched battle between revulsion and control.  Now I don't think I'm in danger of going down that road again.  Not that I'm an expert or a psychiatrist, therapist, psychologist, etc.  But I am an anorexic.  And I know myself pretty well. So I guess I am an expert on something...ish.

But it's been on my mind lately- this combination of greatness and not greatness, of being uncomfortable, of being sick, of being sick of myself.  It's a combination that is on my mind now.  Because I have so much guilt over it.  And it's the guilt that drives it forward over and over again.  You know, because it's not like it's not constantly in my head.  It is.  Just sometimes I keep it back, and sometimes it creeps forward. And it's the guilt that drives it.

Why is it that I, with this life that I lead, can't just be grateful, gracious and comfortable?

I know the answer.  Because I have this disease, and my brain is addled and nothing works right.  But it's still hard to handle that.

And today all I really want is a hamburger- because it's normal, because it's something I would eat before I was sick, because it's something I'd like to eat again (and enjoy).  And because someday I won't be guilty enough not to.

Thursday, March 2, 2017

The Silent Shakedown.

At some point, as a woman not prone to histrionics, you learn how to shut it down.  You learn how to scream on the inside.*  It's a good thing and a bad thing: useful because you're screaming, useless because it's on the inside.

At some point, you learn the value of not wailing but weeping.

You learn how to paste on a smile, be nice to strangers, kind to others, and laugh with everyone else.  You learn to live on cue.

There are days when I feel like I am beating against a wall that will never come down.  I am trying to heal a mortal wound, and I'm too stubborn to give up.  And I'm frequently doing this in the confines of my own head.  My own heart.  My own reflection.

At some point you learn that madness is not anger but agitation; that from some dark and distressed corner of your being a beacon locates something sad and raging but silent.  

There is a part of me that wishes this were easier.  I wish I could wake up every morning, bright-eyed and bushy-tailed and ready to face the day.  I wish I could carry the first happy instant of sun (or cloudy rain) through the rest of the day as I face it.  And then there is that part of me that recognizes the need to wade through the less-than-easy.  We all need to feel the down, the dirty, the blues of it all in order to really get a feel for these lives we lead.

'Cause they ain't easy, that's for sure.

*I myself am pretty bad at hiding things, so my insidedness erupts in pouting and frowning: a slithering, obvious, excruciating silence.