Saturday, September 26, 2015

Everybody's Working For the Weekend

So, here I am drinking from a mustache cup. It is Saturday night and my husband worked today, and not only worked but had a miserable, stressful and long day; he didn't even get home until after 7:30. Needless to say, we were both screaming for the weekend. It just looks different to each of us. 

I do tend to say "tag, you're it!" when he returns, but all that generally means is that he has to eat a dinner that I made him, get showered and then read books to his daughter and lay down with her. The majority of nights he is in there snoring and she is still tossing around pulling at her eyelids.

I take this time to chill in the living room without her crawling back up into my womb; it's been a long week. I have her all by myself all week so I do my share, but I still think that it is important for her to have bed times with Dad, especially because she doesn't see him all week long. We don't see eachother all week long. Everyone is missing everyone. I'm missing being supported, Joey is missing being home, Celie misses Dad but still whines that she wants to sleep with Mama because it's all she is used to. I can not escape being the default parent. Most times she is excited to sleep with Dad, though. It's hard not to feel like a bad mom urging her into her room and taking that time but hey...I do this shit by myself all week, he can manage this while I am just in the other room readily available to tell her to calm down and stop giving him a hard time. It's actually hard in general to carve out time away from her. It's as though mothers are programmed to feel guilty for not being and doing everything, but just logically thinking about that points out how bullshit it is! Mothers need space and time, especially in today's age. We may be super women, but we are not superhuman! 

It takes a village, they say. That's the problem...where the fuck is my village? I think this is the problem with a lot of families, especially single parent families. I am not a single mother, but I share in some of their trials. (I personally believe that every single mother and father in the world deserves a cake, a fun hat, a million bucks, and a national holiday!) I was saying about a mother's drive to be everything? Yeah, single parents actually ARE! I can not even imagine the struggle that they face on a daily basis and I respect the hell out of them for doing that for the benefit of humanity! I'm a completely different breed, though? I seemingly won the partner lottery, but am most of the time without the prize. The Rod Wife, the Trucker's Wife...the Traveler's Wife, basically. My husband is a gypsy, he travels for work and doesn't have any real work roots. He has no office building. He travels as he is needed. I am, quite the opposite, seemingly isolated and alone, planted in one spot, holding down the fort. A tree with my sapling underfoot. In reality, I may not be completely isolated, but I am to an extent emotionally. It's a solemn feeling. In tribal times, this would never happen. Seldom would single, isolated parents survive the challenges of living in the wild. Perhaps it could happen, but what I guess I am saying is that the survival rate would not be very good. You would probably be eaten by a saber tooth tiger. Perhaps this is why it is such a solemn, serious, isolating feeling? The animal in me knows that the chances of survival are slim without my village or tribe. Fight or flight kicks in...I'm constantly fighting. Hello anxiety! There is a primal sense of fear that can take hold when you are isolated with a child over time, and it's a struggle to not let it win. 

There is also a strong sense of guilt that primary caregivers share, that leads to not taking the time to get away, unwind, or care for themselves...not having that mustache drink or that Calgon bath. I am currently working on getting better with my self-care, and it is surprisingly difficult. Actually, I have been failing at it. Months ago my therapist suggested that I take at least an hour every Saturday and Sunday? Seems easy! Not really. I haven't even been able to accomplish that consistently. When my family is actually together, the last thing I want to do is leave them?! But that is exactly what I need to do sometimes...I need that time away, but more importantly, I need to not feel guilty for needing it. I think this has become a completely different post...I digress. For the record, though, parenting is not what has been kicking my ass. Parenting 90% of the time by myself with depression and anxiety has been kicking my ass. Parenting in and of itself can be difficult, but dealing with your own mental illness while attempting to raise a child so that she isn't destroyed by your own toxicity is a whole other set of goals. Believe me...the struggle is real. Self-love and self-care are KEY to my success. Therapy itself is a form of self-care, but can also be stressful as I work through issues and explore my darkness. I need the mustache drinks! More importantly, I need what the mustache drink represents: ME time! 

So, Joey and I have similar and opposite lives and perspectives. He works away all week, building bridges and raising buildings, waiting to return home on the weekend to unwind with his family at his home. I work away at home all week raising a human, and talking feelings, waiting for my husband to return home on the weekend so I can have some relief and companionship. We are both waiting to be reunited, working for the for the weekend? Ideally, I would like for it not to seem this way, but when we're together, I'm together. 

The Bunny Mouse and the Pasta Bush

Earlier this summer, we had an interesting encounter with a family of bunnies. It was mildly challenging. They were actually in a flower bed that is right beside where we park the car? Buster sniffed the first one out where it was hidden under the pine needles and pulled it out. I immediately told him to drop it and miraculously it was okay because at the time it was only as big as a mouse! It's ears were back, it didn't have its eyes open; it was the smallest bunny I have ever seen! 

We didn't know what to do, at first. We thought, surely, it had been anandoned or was a single bunny born to a young naive mama, maybe? Where was she and why would she have a baby so close to the house for one, but also so close to the cars? We thought about putting it in a different bush farther up the driveway , but ultimately and fortunately, we put it back in the flower bed by the big Hasta bush (or Pasta bush, as Celie calls it). It tucked itself down under the pine needles in an amazing way! 

Afterward, I did my Google research and I was glad that we put it back where we found it. I read that most baby bunnies are thought to be abandoned but it is just because the mother rabbits only tend to them a few hours a day, before dawn. I also read that it is untrue that the mother would not take care of it if we handled it, a mother rabbit has an incredible sense of smell and will still sniff out her babies even if human scents are on it. We left it and hoped the mama would tend to it again. 

I kept Buster away from the flower bed the best that I could for a few days and assumed she maybe reclaimed it? I don't remember exactly how it all went down, but he sniffed it out again and dug it up from the pine needles. I was surprised he never hurt it when he did this? I picked it up this time and put it back, it dug deep in the pine needles again and just stayed there, a little shocked. The mother was certainly tending to it because it was plump and had obviously grown. After putting it back in the flower bed, I found it coming out on the opposite side. I picked it up and put it back in the flower bed. But wait a minute? I checked where I had placed the other one. Indeed, it was a different bunny! 

Just about the time I noticed this, ANOTHER bunny emerged. They were groggy and clumsy, their eyes were just starting to open. We put the other bunnies repeatedly back into the flower bed. They were so sleepy, obviously spooked from the Buster encounter but not exactly able to flee. They would make slow attempts and I put them back, hoping the mom would remove them or something? I tied Buster and kept watch. On this day I was eagerly waiting for evening, because they were just about ready to leave their Hasta home and I am not the best of bunny sitters. The next few days we looked out for them while pulling the vehicles in and kept the dog away. 

They slowly disappeared; one evening, at dusk, the mother was chilling just about ten feet from the bed, nibbling on some grass. The last lingering bunny was near her. When my husband pulled in, she was spooked and I think she may have grabbed the bunny and took it with her because I heard a squeak from it as she disappeared. I considered myself successful by not finding any nearby dead bunny bodies afterward, so I believe that they all survived. 

Rabbits symbolize fertility, reproduction, and abundance, among other things. I always like to check for the symbolism of animals when I encounter them. Of course, as with dream interpretation, I value my own personal symbolism, if any, for the creature first, but some sites are rather insiteful. One thing, in particular, resonated with me:
"In some Native American traditions Rabbit is known as the Fear Caller, due to it projecting its fear of those wishing to eat it, and thereby attracting the predators it fears." The rabbit can symbolize our projection of our negative thoughts. Perhaps, these bunnies were a sign to acknowledge my own inner fears and to tend to them gently with compassion. 

"Fearful thoughts reproduce (like rabbits) and manifest what we fear. Rabbit people may be afraid of tragedy, illness, and disaster, thereby calling those very fears to them to teach them lessons." So, I perhaps need to be a bunny sitter to my own little inner bunny fears. I need to be gentle with those parts of me and accepting, while also being mindful not to manifest those same fears. Keep exploring my parts with tenderness. I like to think that these bunnies were a sweet reminder to continue on my journey down the rabbit hole, and to lose my fears on the way down. Point taken. Thanks, Mother Nature! 


Actually, You Catch More Flies with Vinegar

You have probably heard the aphorism "You catch more flies with honey than vinegar!" It's an old saying, who knows where it came from? Your guess is as good as mine. Who really knows, but I am going to contest that this is one of the most bogus claims in history, right up there with "You'll go blind!" Flies don't like sweetness, they like rotten things. Is this a metaphor? I'm not even sure. 

I tend to let my bananas rot away on the counter on occasion. I maintain that it is because I am waiting to make banana bread. Sometimes that's the case, I always have the best of intentions, like this time, but I don't always get to it before the fruit flies do. The little bastards are persistent and prolific; if you're not motivated their little wormy babies will soon be squiggling around on your oozing 'nanas. Gross. I know. Once they come around, fruit flies can be hard to get rid of. Oregano, I have heard before. Another excellent way to trap the annoying fruit flies, if you don't mind outsmarting and destroying the poor sorry sap suckers, is to use exactly what this axiom suggests does not work well...vinegar. 

This last bunch of bananas I had made it a long time but two of them ended up drawing in fruit flies. That always tends to happen when I wait until they start oozing. There were a ton of them, but not for long. "Have you seen this? Have you heard about this?" The best way I have learned to get rid of fruit flies is to pour a little Apple Cider Vinegar into a glass, cup, what have you. Add some dish soap, Dawn, the liquid stuff...and voila! It's a fly trap. 

Watch them hover, sit on the rim, and then ultimately explore until they die. They are attracted to the vinegar  and then the soap traps them. You will soon have a disgusting cup full of dead flies, suspended in colorful liquid. By the end of the day, all of the fruit flies were gone. It's like some kind of, more like science. It works great! So, you can catch more flies with honey than vinegar, huh? Bullshit. Vinegar will catch you more flies...maybe not figuratively, but literally! Try it! 

Friday, September 25, 2015

Daughter's Day Debunked

Trending on social media today has been #NationalDaughtersDay. The interesting thing is, though, that people have been posting about it for the past three days? So when the hell IS National Daughter's Day? I was curious, so I did the Google search only to be left more confused. According to there is no such thing, but when searched for in their engine you are given National Son's and Daughter's Day which is celebrated on August 11th. This day is apparently also shared with National Presidential Joke Day and National Raspberry Bombe Day. I know, right? What the fuck is that? I learned that "a typical bombe contains sherbet, heavy cream, sugar, chopped nuts, candied fruit and a dash of rum.  It is layered in a spherical mold and frozen overnight creating a centerpiece dessert." How has this information been hiding?! I mean, it's no secret, it's been out there! (If kids want to know how to make a Bombe they can find out!) Why are there not Bombe parties happening? ("You can't say Bombe on a plane!!") And how the hell did a random dessert get a national day, even if there IS rum in it and it has a punny name? Especially when there technically isn't a day for daughters?  More importantly, what the hell is going on? My search continued! 

On it says that National Daughter's Day is indeed September 25th, 2015 because it was apparently referenced 6,296 times on Twitter. This site just counts tags to see what national day is trending, though, basically. I learned that on today, other than Daughter's Day, some of the other national days mentioned by people on Twitter included National Pebebe Wave Day, National Comic Book Day, National Lobster Day, National Hug a Vegetarian Day, National Punctuation Day, and National Coffee Day, which I feel would totally get more than 419 mere mentions if it really WAS today, right? See, nobody knows what the hell is going on! 

On the site, it said that National Daughter's Day is always celebrated on the 4th Sunday of September, which would make it the 27th, so that is CLOSER but people are still confused and so am I. This site also claimed that it is sometimes celebrated on October 1st, which only made me madder. Come ON! I have no idea where this information came from. It very well could have been pulled straight from an ass, because there were several people claiming in comments sections to have INVENTED this day themselves. One of them in July?! Grrrrr. 

I did find a good article on the same thing I was going through, though. Ronda Walker wrote about the confusion of the "D" Day trend. She makes a good point by stating that it's easy to check sources and we are supposedly in the Information Age but we tend to rely on trends and memes as facts and forget to check sources. Fair enough, but how did this all get started? Like most things on social media...probably with a cute picture and a hashtag. People probably didn't want to seem like asshole parents by not publicly doting on their own daughters when they saw their friends doing it and others obviously just didn't want to be a jerk like I'm doing by saying something about it. 

What I learned today is that what is #trending is definitely becoming synonymous with what is #true. This just goes to show that you can't believe everything that the internet tells you and it's never a bad idea to look things up. It doesn't really matter, though, it's always nice to see people posting about how much they love their children, so it's all good! I will be curious, however, to see when National Daughter's Day is celebrated next year. When will that elusive day be? The World Wide Web may never know. The truth is, though, that every day is some day, so celebrate with your dear daughter. Be a good parent and teach her how to make a Bombe! ;)

National Calendar Day

When Is Daughters Day in 2015

What National Day Is It

Ronda Walker: Celebrating National Daughters Day

Thursday, September 24, 2015

Mini Missions and Tiny Tangles

I've been trying to stay creative while it feels as though I've been doing basically nothing but mothering, reading IFS therapy books, loosing my mind and doing mental work. While I'm swimming around in the psyche soup I like to do random things to stimulate myself...or escape? Expand my mind...alter my state of conciousness...all of the above. I have a Mission Jar that I have posted about before. It is full of random small creative tasks on little square pieces of paper. I have been tangling lately so I decided to create a specific Zentangle and FINALLY do the mission on the slip of paper I pulled out probably over a year ago in order to get me BACK into actually giving a shit about The Mission Jar. Last year I pulled "Create an Image Using Dots" and I started something in my notebook at the time but never finished it. So I figured I would do a Zentangle piece for fun, I don't know if that was cheating? What is the difference between a dot and a circle? A tip and tangle? Perspective? Distance? Fuck it. It is what it is and I dig it! GOAL! Tangling is fun, you should try it.

Thursday, September 10, 2015

Dead Man

Hey, ho, dead man, sorry you're not around.
Been feeling your thoughts in my head,
Know you're missing that sound. 

Hey, ho, dead man, it's sure been a long time.
Been seeing your visions through my eyes, 
Know you're living in these rhymes. 

Hey, ho, dead man, how come ya never call?
Been thinking your words in my mind, 
No, you're never gone at all. 

Hey, ho, dead man, I saw you walking down the line. 
Been following your steps with cold feet, 
Know I'll meet with you in time. 

So saddle up that dark horse and ride across the flames, 
No excuse for wasting the dawn, take a chance, welcome the pain. 
You've been burned worse before by your own hand,
So, tell me now, what's there to lose for a dead man? 

Hey, ho, dead man, I was wrong about the map, 
Been remembering letters on the key, 
Know your own ego was the trap. 

Hey, ho, dead man, I really wish that you were here.
Been missing the way that we were, 
Know you'll never reappear. 

Hey, ho, dead man, could you take me for a ride? 
Been hearing our song in my head, 
Know you never really died. 
No, you never really died. 
I know, you never really died. 

Wednesday, September 9, 2015

Boyd's Song: An Anniversary Tune

So I wrote this song about a year back about my buddy Boyd. It's a total day-in-the-life tune about our days together before he died. He was one hell of a guy and I was prompted to record this on the 5th anniversary of his death.

Rest in peace, Boyd!

I wrote this song last year with my buddy Boyd (in mind) that died on September 9th, 2010. So much sadness and heartache, but I think this song is silly and fun, just like Boyd, and is a testament to what he would want us to have learned from his life and death...remember the good times. Make your own music. Don't be so serious. Lighten up. Take a joke. Be yourself. Please don't mind the finches and the glitches; this was just on my iPhone this morning when I had a moment. Since we're sharing...and I have been silent...and he is always on my mind this time of year...I figured that I should record it in honor of the 5th anniversary of his death. He was very involved in it's creation. Love never dies; it only changes form.                               

Boyd's Song:  
I got me a grin bigger than a crescent moon,
I got me a guitar strumming out a simple tune.
Fire in the pit and dog at my side,
Nothing these sons of bitches ain't tried.
Hangin' with the pack and we're howling at the moon!
I got me a quarter I found in a shoe,
Bankin' on the eight, a little English on the cue.
"Tell ya what I'd do" if ya wanna try your luck,
Old school rules, wrack a game and break a buck,
Hangin' with the pack and we're howling at the moon!
Woooooo woooo hoooo!
Woooooo woooo hoooo!
You've never seen Cool Hand Luke?!
Woooooo woooo hoooo!
One hell of a night, mornin' not so good,
Woulda slept right through afternoon if I could.
Head cracked open, too sick to get ready,
But I stopped throwin' up in time for Tom Petty!
Hangin' with the pack and we're howling at the moon!
Rollin' down the river; "it's a pirate's life for me!"
Nowhere on God's green earth I'd rather be!
Sippin' my potion from a plastic cup,
Feelin' alive and fired up,
Hangin' with the pack and we're howlin' at the moon!