fireflys_locket: (Lovely Reflection - amethystia)
"The day came when the risk to remain tight in a bud was more painful than the risk it took to blossom."

It's weird, being that person who doesn't change much, watching other people change or talk about big changes. How they aren't the same person they used to be. It baffles me. It makes me feel different. Other. Just like I always have. Being alienated as a child actually helped me to get to know myself much more quickly than most people.

I know not all changes are bad. Sometimes people have to shift over time to be the person they were meant to be. And that's okay, for some people. But the thing is, I've basically always known who I was. There were things about myself and what I believed in that I tried to deny to fit in better, whether with classmates or the church or whatever. But deep down, I knew how I really felt. Dropping out of school gave me the chance to accept myself as I am.

I always knew what I wanted to be, too. I've been a vegetarian since thirteen. A writer since ten. A make-believer/story-creator much longer than that. And searching for my soulmate as far back as I can remember. (Maybe what I've been looking for has changed a bit over the years, but it's only that I realized I deserved better. Someone who really loved and understood me.)

It's good, knowing yourself so well; it's constant and reliable. Though knowing who you are doesn't mean you never have doubts. It doesn't make everything else just fall into place, either. It doesn't mean you don't have limitations. The same ostracism that helped me know myself also left wounds that have handicapped me all these years later.

I am still young Jane Roberts. I'm still that nine-year-old girl with all of that passion and anxiety. I still rely so much on my Mother and can't be on my own. I'm still terrified of so many things (mainly people), and I'm just as lonely as I ever was. Maybe more-so after closing myself off so far away from people.

When I was young, I always felt older. Like I understood more than everyone else. Maybe every kid feels that way. I probably actually knew far less about life than the kids around me. But I did, at least, know more about myself than most of them could understand.

Now that I'm an "adult", I feel more like a teenager than I ever did at that age. I feel like I never developed past the age I left school. I am twenty-seven, and I barely feel seventeen. And I know I'm not alone in not feeling my age either, but few people are actually in the exact same situation they were in ten years ago. They are not as stuck as I am. They are not as crippled and ruled by anxiety as I am.

But through all this, I know who I am. And I love that person. I don't want to be anyone else.

"Your time as a caterpillar has expired; your wings are ready."

It doesn't mean I don't want my life to change. I'm dying to break free of the bud, to spread my wings and fly. But wanting it doesn't make it happen. Everyone wants to say that your only limitations are the ones you give to yourself. That you can choose to be happy.

Do you really think I wouldn't choose to be happy if I could choose that?

The truth is that mental and emotional illnesses are just as real as any physical limitation. If I could live on my own, I would. Believe me. At this point, I am absolutely sick over having to live in the situation I'm in. I feel so trapped I can hardly breathe.

I don't want to be normal anymore (though sometimes I still think I do). I have always had my own path to follow. And that's good. I wouldn't change that now. I love who I am, flaws and limitations and all. But I want a better, happier life. I want to break free from the circumstances that have held me in like a closed bud, and fly.

But I cannot fly on my own.
fireflys_locket: (Pretty Hachi - girlgamer)
When you get this ask, list 5 things that make you happy, then send it to the last 10 people that liked/reblogged something from you :)

I decided to repost this here since I ended up writing a lot and wanted to share with more people.


So, you may or may not know, but I struggle a lot with the word happy. If I use it, like I did yesterday, I usually say “I’m happy to” or “I’m happy with” not straight up “I’m happy”. Because I have never felt the kind of happiness that gets down deep in your heart. I’ve always felt lonely and scared of being even more alone in my future. And this is getting awfully mopey for my being in a decently good mood. Sorry.

But here are some things that make me happy-ish and have gotten me through hard times:

1. Working on Magic Inc. Writing, in general, feels great as long as I don’t try to force it and just follow my inspiration’s lead. But Magic Inc. feels even more special than my other stories because it allows me to relive my childhood fantasies and work through some of my deepest feelings in text. That also makes it scarier to eventually share that story with other people. (And soon.) But hopefully, it will reach people who can relate to it.

2. The Sims. I love The Sims. I love making characters on there and “work” stuff like that. But I also love just playing. I’m constantly making stories in my head while playing Sims, and occasionally, they end up as some part of my fictional universe. But just being able to create stuff that’s just for me is a good creative exercise. I get to create without any pressure.

3. Giant Bomb. I can’t tell you how much Giant Bomb (and older GameSpot) videos and podcasts have helped me get through rough periods in my life for the past ten years. The Persona 4 Endurance Run is something I go back to time and time again, and I kind of can’t imagine my life without these dudes in it, as silly as that may sound. Losing Ryan Davis was so hard because it felt like he was a distant friend.

4. Having a great therapist/mentor. Jill is a key part of my life. She’s encouraged me to be myself and follow my dreams. There’s no way I’d be getting ready to publish my first book right now without Jill to read everything I’ve written and to give me her honest feedback.

5. Watching through TV shows with my Mom. Since my great emotional crash of 2010, I’ve usually spent a few hours every night, during my most emotionally vulnerable time, watching TV shows with my Mom. This idea has greatly improved as we realized that watching shows from the beginning through DVDs or streaming is much more fun than just seeing what’s on and having to choose from that. We’ve watched through almost 25 shows over the last few years, and we have fun making silly references to each other.
fireflys_locket: (Release Me - soporifical)
I've been missing again. Turns out, the depressive state from last entry turned into an extreme anxiety crash after a relative's long visit. I don't feel much like going into the exact triggers because talking about that stuff is what worked me up in the first place. I tried to hold it in. I tried to just move past it. It would have been nice to have a calender year without an anxiety crash or tragedy. But I couldn't do it. It had to come out. And maybe if I hadn't tried so hard to hold it in, it wouldn't have been as bad. But I'm always scared now that if let my emotions free I'll crash like this everytime. And I couldn't handle that.

As it often happens, my held-in emotions found a temporary outlet in an obsession. This time it was book. A beautiful, lovely, tragic book. It was one that stood out to me instantly when I first ran across it online. It called out to me, begging for me to buy it. So, I did. Then it settled into a spot in the stacks with my other books to be read. And stayed quiet for a couple of years. I knew I'd love it. I also knew it would hurt me. As with many things, I waited for the exact right moment. Or the exact wrong moment. But no, I can't regret any of this.

I noticed a friend was reading the book on Goodreads; that was the reminder. Then she rated it five stars. I liked the update, and added it to my To-Read list. Then we started talking about it. I finished the book I was currently reading (Harry, A History - finally!) and started Forbidden. Our company was still around at the time. I hid in my room and read. And obsessed. Every word hit against my heart, shaking the held-in emotions. It was painful and blissful at the same time. It hurt so good.

Then the company left, and I hesitated to read the last hundred or so pages. I'd known from the start that this book would be one of those beautifully sad ones. The ones I call Lovely Despair. But after the company was gone, I could feel my guard slipping down. My exhaustion was leaking through. All of the depression I'd felt through August had been amplified by incidents during the company's visit, but I had to stay stable. I had to survive. Once they were gone, I was crumbling. I finally read through to the end. And I was broken open with grief.

I sobbed. And sobbed. And all the things that had built up inside me came rushing out. I couldn't control it. I listened to a fanmix, my obsession still strong. Looked up stuff on Tumblr. Tried to make it only about the book. But it wasn't. The obsession had protected me for a while, but as it always goes, that obsession broke me open in the end. And I couldn't avoid the pain and the panic anymore.

My Mom stayed home from work. I had flashbacks of my breakdown in 2010. I felt like those times had never actually ended. That they had stretched all through these years, and I had just been living in an illusion. Panic attacks are almost the worst thing in the world because they convince you they are the worst thing in the world. That the world is ending. That you can't breathe. That you're bleeding to death. Even when you aren't.

The panic came in waves. When I started to go under, my thoughts automatically started back on the book and that grief. I guess that pain at least seemed safer than my real fears, though I always ended up back in my own pain. As part of my recovery, Jill suggested writing a piece of fanfiction for the book. I did. It helped some. I also wrote a book review. I even started a fanmix of my own.

I'm starting to feel somewhat better now, but I'm still really shaky. I'm scared something will happen, and I'll crash back down again. Panic Disorder is such that you find yourself panicking at the thought of panicking. And I have a psychiatrist appointment coming up to worry over. He sometimes makes me feel worse. Often, really.

It took weeks to recover. But here I am, trying to get back to normal. But it's hard. I find myself still obsessing over my beloved Forbidden, which has earned a place in my heart forever. But I have to be careful how long I let myself stay there. Because it's still painful. Because I'm still struggling.

An obsession can help you or it can hurt you. Or it can hurt you to help you. That's what I think this one did. This book would have made me love it and feel pain from it whenever I decided to read it. But I read it now. Why? Because I needed to be broken open. Maybe. It's hard to say that when you're still struggling, still recovering. But I think that's why. It was also helpful to have someone to talk to who had read it and loved it quite recently. Funny how I started out thinking I was reading it now to support her. It ended up being the other way around.
fireflys_locket: (Stupid Weather (Kagome) - fireflys_locke)
It's been a long time since I really enjoyed Christmas. At least as long as I've been out of school. (Eight years, for those counting.) Mostly, holidays just depress me in general. Even my favorite holiday, Halloween, turned depressing the last two years. Pretty much, any day that's supposed to feel special depresses me, because it doesn't feel any different, so there must be something wrong (with me). I know I'm far from the only person who feels this way, especially with Christmas. But holidays feel lonely and disconnected. My Mom and Joe usually go to some busy family holiday party, and I gladly stay behind. But even though I know I'm making the right choice for me, I feel left behind. Alone.

This year was somewhat the same as always. And yet, the build up to Christmas felt very different. I was more angry than sad. Christmas has become so materialistic and over-hyped. And I'm tired of it. I'm tired of feeling lonely, because I can't handle family parties. I didn't want to get presents, and I didn't even feel excited to give them. Besides a few presents for kids (which were more fun to buy), I didn't buy much for people this year. I just wanted to skip over the whole end of the year.

Except that this was the 10th anniversary of the dream that inspired Dreaming in Shadow. And I wanted that to feel special. But it didn't, either. I wrote a little bit to celebrate, but I was really tired from the one day of Christmas shopping I did with my Dad. (In fact, I was exhausted basically all week because of that, but it was nice to finally see him.) This was more disappointing to me than Christmas. Holidays are basically a lost cause for me... but I'm finding it hard for something really important to me to pass without any special feeling. The same thing happened with finishing my three first drafts earlier this year. In that case, it was all so bittersweet. But either way, it's hard for me to recognize any sort of personal achievement, because I don't feel like I deserve it. Yes, writing is going really well, and I'm quite proud of my work these days. But I never feel like I've actually reached a point that's worth celebrating. I only see how much work there is left to go.

I just want things to be back to normal. In all honestly, I've balanced myself better this year than ever before. I had a rough Spring, for sure, but it wasn't as bad (or as long) as most rough Summers. But there's a sense that in order to balance my normal better, there has to be less of a positive tip as well. I've never ever had high highs to balance my low lows. But I think my highs are even lower now. It's probably worth it; living in panicked low times is beyond words. But it would be nice for some things to feel special.

I just don't know how to do that.
fireflys_locket: (Pinwheel Summer - fireflys_locket)
So, hey... I'm back. I'm just going to make this a quick one. I posted a longer explanation of why I've been missing, but I put it under a lock for now. It's been hard to write a normal entry after posting that one, so this one might be a little awkward. Things have gone back to normal in general, but I just want to get things back to normal here.

Though I haven't been around to say, writing has been going pretty well. I have 7 chapters of Magic Inc. revised and typed up. That story is flowing so well, so that's what I've been focusing most of my writing time on lately. I also started the second draft of Spun of Silver. I typed out 12 pages that day, which has got to be a record for me. Still working on that first chapter of Dreaming in Shadow. I'm not sure why I'm taking so long with that one. I guess it might be because I invited a lot of friends to read that prologue, and I want the first chapter to look really great before I show it off.

And then, there's Miss Masquerade, which has me dragging myself through the last bit of filler. I didn't so much finish the most recent chapter as give up on it (temporarily). It's been rough comparing how well my second drafts flow with how Miss Masquerade is going. It's really close to the climax, but it's so much harder to write than everything else I'm working on. Still, now that I'm done with filler, I'm hoping I'll at least be more excited to work on MM. That should help.

In some sadder news, a couple of people died recently. MaryAnn's Mom died after being in and out of the hospital a lot. It's been a long time since I've seen her, and I feel a bit bad about that. But mostly, I'm just sending blessings to MaryAnn and her family. And Ryan Davis, from Giant Bomb, also passed away. Though I never met Ryan, he's been pretty constant in my life since the end of 2006. Those Giant Bomb guys have gotten me through a lot of hard times, where the only thing that would get me through the day was constantly watching their videos. I believe both of these people have gone on to a better place, but it's still very heart-breaking to know they're gone from this world.


Blessings and love to all. Try to live the life that makes you happiest and treasure the time you have.
fireflys_locket: (Fangirl Hachi - fireflys_locket)
It's been too long since I talked about fandoms on here. I took this survey from this Tumblr post. I'm not sure I have any amazing answers, but I'm going to try my best.

1. What fandom(s) did you fall into this year? Lots, but I'll list some favorites: One Tree Hill, The Hunger Games, Instant Star, Dollhouse, and Dance Academy. I'm looking forward to enjoying more of all of these this year.

2. What new internet slang did you learn? Uh... no idea.

3. What was the best movie you saw? I watched so many great movies in 2012, but I'm not sure which I'd call the best. But if you want a long list of some movies I really loved watching last year: The Last Song, Water Lilies, Foxfire, Keith, The Secret World of Arrietty, Wreck-It Ralph, The Hunger Games, Across the Universe, Sucker Punch, Black Swan, Cruel Intentions, Snow White and the Huntsmen, Beastly, and Red Riding Hood.

4. Favorite character you met this year? Peeta Mellark. <3

5. Favorite meme? I'm not sure about that.

6. What is the most nerdy item you acquired? Maybe the Signed copy of Paper Towns (which I still haven't read yet...)?

7. Favorite new food you tried this year? I don't try a lot of new foods, but this. Thank you, Sam.

8. What was the best book you read? This is so close between Catching Fire and Forbidden, but I'm going to choose Forbidden, because I adored it, and I'm hoping a great new series will follow this great book.

9. Favorite YouTube channel you subscribed to? Michelle Phan. What can I say? Her videos are so relaxing, and I love the music she uses.

10. What is your favorite memory of 2012? Meeting my (almost) step-niece, Brooklyn.

11. What are you looking forward to in 2013? Finishing at least two first drafts, and working on the second drafts of those stories. I am seriously really excited!

12. What is the GIF best expresses 2012 for you? The year in general. Most of my year. The rest of my year.
fireflys_locket: (Valerie's Happiness - fireflys_locket)
Finally, LiveJournal is working again. I've had things I wanted to say and no where to say them. Okay, I have plenty of places to say them, but none feel as right to me as this journal. I recently saw someone on Tumblr say, "Seriously, who uses LiveJournal?" Well, I do. And I know I'm not the only one. When I do visit my Friends List, I'm always surprised that it's not as quiet as I usually imagine it is. Some people move through sites chasing the passing fad. I've added a lot of sites into my life: Facebook, Tumblr, and (recently) Twitter. They all have their place, but I'll never move away from LiveJournal, unless by force. The recent down time has made me think about looking into backing up my journal, though. And that worries me.

But what's been going on with me? Oh, the usual... writing, fandoms, holiday depression. Actually, that last one wasn't too bad in comparison to other years, so I'm thankful. It's sad when you have to be grateful when things aren't as bad as they could be, but it's better than not being grateful for anything. I wish I hadn't been pressured into going out to dinner on New Year's Eve, but other than that - or even including that - I survived fine. And I was just really ready for a new year.

January, for me, is a thoughtful month. I usually don't get as much writing done in the winter, and particularly, January. I actually wrote more than I thought I would during the holidays, but now, I can feel myself wanting to slow down and rest. Under normal circumstances, I'd be really frustrated by not having written this far into the week (I usually count writing weeks from Friday to Thursday, because Thursdays are when Jill reads my weekly writing at therapy). But I've been getting a lot of signs that resting is a good thing for me right now; the greatest of which was this article, which I read a few days ago. Though it describes Expansion as a time of new ideas, I find that, during the winter, I actually get a lot of new ideas. The Contraction times for me are times of planning, where I'm not doing much work on actually writing, but a lot of new ideas surface, and little things click into place. Even more than usual, I'm focused on stories in the future. Sometimes, I'll even write out some scenes for those stories, but I'm just not as focused on writing my current stories.

This week has been a Contraction week, for sure. I've been relaxing... and without the guilt. As I mentioned in my comment, even when I let myself give into the need to rest, I often guilt myself about it, which almost completely taints what I gain from it. It's not really rest, if you're stressing about it. Interestingly, I recently heard a quote from a Neopets friend about rest, "No rest is worth anything but the rest that is earned." While I do agree that one needs to make sure they put in the effort during times of Expansion, I didn't want him putting rest down completely. If all you did in life was work, you'd end up drained. You might even be forced to rest... and for longer than you would have needed if you had taken regular breaks. Point is, rest is a natural part of life. We need times of Contraction, just like we need times of Expansion. But everyone's balance of those cycles is different, and we just need to listen to our intuition when it's telling us which it currently is.

So, right now, I'm resting. I probably will try to write tomorrow, but I'm not going to force it. Writers mostly have been agreeing with me that "forcing it" is not a good idea, whether that means to skipping to a part of the story, which suits your mood better, moving to a different story for a while, or in this case, just taking a short break. I believe there are few times when forcing something is the right thing to do. There are times, certainly, but few.

Last January (and some of the previous December), I was reading through Add More ~ing to Your Life, and - though, I struggled with the book at times - it was mostly a good way to get really thoughtful about some new ways of seeing things for a new year. The book certainly inspired a lot of journal posts. I remember doing a lot of crying and meditating, while listening to music, which was really touching my soul at the time. I must have been somewhat ready to do that again, because something about the new year approaching made me want to start a book from my Aunt, that I've had sitting around for years, What Would You Do If You had No Fear?. In all honestly, I just wanted to read the book, so I could release it from its place of taunting me. I've let it sit around for so long, because I just knew it was going to be difficult and make me think bad things about myself, because I'm not at all willing to release my fears of people.

I was kind of wrong. Wrong about the book, I mean. Okay, I really haven't gotten far along it at all, so I don't know for certain that I'm completely wrong about it. But from the Introduction and Chapter 1, I can see that this book isn't quite for me for a whole other reason: I'm already doing what I would do if I had no fear. Well, not entirely. Certainly, there are things I'd kind of like to do, which fear keeps me from. Going to Harry Potter and anime conventions, for one. But even those things just aren't very important to me, because if they were, I'd work on them. That's the thing with me; I don't put energy into most of the things that I fear, because it would drain me too much for the things that are really important to me. Like writing. Like, hopefully, doing small local events for writing. That's exactly what I want to do with my life, and I'm already doing it.

My Aunt Pat (the same one, who got me that book years ago) called recently. I don't hear from her often, so she was happy to hear me update her on how well writing has been going over the last couple of years and all my plans for the future. Then, she asked me what else have I been doing. She asked if I've been getting out, and when I told her that I haven't much, she suggested taking writing or knitting classes. I told her I would never be able to take classes, because I never go out on my own. She said she hoped I'd get over it. Those are trigger words for me, and though I was trying to be nice about it, I knew I had to shut this idea down. I told her that I had no desire to take classes, so I wasn't going to put effort into something that would never work, when I didn't want it anyhow.

The book talks about doing those things you've always wanted to do. But I don't want to travel and see the world. I don't want to take classes for things I don't care about (this includes writing classes, because I know what and how I like to write already). I don't want to go out all the time. I don't want to be normal. (Yes, it would be nice to not feel like I was in near-mortal danger every time I went out in public, but hey, I've been going out shopping with my Mom most Saturdays for years, and it has never gotten any better.) I have no desire for those things. What I want is to write. What I want is to self-publish. What I want is to enjoy inspiration from movies, games, books, and music from the comfort of my own home. And I don't want those things, because I'm afraid of "what I really want". I want those things, because I'm an Introvert... not because I have Social Anxiety. (Those are two different things, by the way.) I want these things, because I'm me. The only thing I really want, that fear might be keeping me, from is Morgan. But even that's not for certain, because Morgan's not likely to be someone who's out all the time. I want another Introvert, like me. And I am very open to online contact.

I always go into these sorts of Non-Fiction books with a bad mentality of knowing that a frustrating challenge waits for me, the easily triggered. But I will say that I do usually learn something about myself, even if it's not exactly the lesson the book intended. And it usually gets me to journal about it. So, watch out. *Looks at this long post* Maybe, it's too late for that warning. :/

January has been pretty kind to me, so far. I feel lighter, like the baggage of last year (or maybe the last few years) has mostly been left behind. This won't last. But I'm trying to be kinder to myself, to let the little mistakes and mishaps go more easily, and to allow myself to rest. Rest, because there's a lot I want to do this year, and I need the energy to do it.

I wish you all the start of great new year. If things aren't going well so far, remember to take a deep breath and know that you don't always have to wait for a new year to get things back on track. And I'm always here if you need to talk.
fireflys_locket: (Catch Me (Kairi) - fireflys_locket)
I spent some of last week and most of the week before with my cousins, Matt and Missy. Even though I usually like their visits, I hadn't seen them in 2 years, and they hadn't stayed with us in 3, and to be honest, I was nervous. They are getting older, and teenagers scare me. I feel like teens are always judging me. Anytime they look at me, I can feel it.

But frankly, Matt and Missy aren't like that. At least, not to me. And although they are now both taller than me, and Matt could grow a beard if he wanted, they haven't changed much (and any changes I did notice were positive). They still love Kingdom Hearts. And Missy wanted to watch Saint Tail. Both are things I shared with them when they first started to make yearly visits about 8 years ago. Enjoying some of my favorite things from 10 years ago actually made me feel 13 again. For better or worse. It was a strange feeling.

The kids (I have to stop saying that!) Matt and Missy were a pleasant distraction the whole time they were here. The week was mostly filled with good things, even though my computer died (RIP Courtney). It was great to feel constantly busy with them, rather than sitting around alone, trying to fight my depression. But it did make me worry here and there about how I would feel when they left. It was a long visit - just right, in my opinion - which helped. I did still feel sad, but I didn't fall right back into previous worries. At least, not in an extreme way.

But I'm having trouble getting back to writing. I was barely able to fit a couple of sentences in during their visit. If I go too long between good writing sessions, I can feel a bit stuck. And that's exactly what happened. I also think that Summer's not my best season for writing (among other things), so I'm not being too hard myself. And I'm in the middle of two filler chapters. Oh, I'm so bad at those.

I have to say, I was having a pretty good day Saturday, while the weather was gray and breezy. Made me almost feel like Summer was over. It only lasted a few hours, then the heat and sun came back. But I had a little taste of my own weather bliss, and it did make me a bit buzzed, if only for a short time. If it had lasted, that would have been a great day for writing. Ah, well.

And that's it.

Actually, there are so many things I want to talk about right now. More serious things like tragedies and big issues. I did write some thoughts on two different sites recently: one short response to this video (on the shooting) and a longer response to this Tumblr post (on homophobia/ignorance). Though I wouldn't say either response was probably that important or moving, they were both more important than anything I've said in this post so far. So, yeah.

Also, I want to link to this blog post talking about the idea of claiming, “I’m not like the other girls." and why that kind of thinking might be flawed. It was an interesting thought for me - someone, who quickly states on her profile, "I'm not like most people." I really like this post, so check it out if you're interested. I actually found it while reading another article linked on Giant Bomb about sexism and such. I agree with some points there as well, but it's a harder read, and I'm not sure how I would go about discussing this sort of thing (as someone, who mostly retreats from conflict).

And that is it. Maybe. While writing this, I started thinking that if I'm not getting much fiction writing done the rest of this Summer, maybe I could at least try to post here more often. After all, writing is writing. Sort of. I hated writing essays in school, and I felt like it was actually draining my creativity instead of adding to it. But that's another topic!

"The weapon we have is love."
fireflys_locket: (Colette Back Wings - carameltrap)
My Grandma's birthday was a couple of days ago. It's the first birthday, where we couldn't throw her a party, and all of us are thinking of her last party... at the hospital. Truthfully, while I was sad, I didn't want to have that be the feeling on her birthday. That's not a day Grandma would want us to mourn. It's meant to be celebrated. But in the end, I couldn't quite get that celebration going, in myself or anyone else.

Still, lately, I've been watching shows and movies I used to watch with Grandma. Or even just ones I think she would like. And I can feel her laughing with me, watching with me, watching over me. I don't know why that part is so easy for me. My Mom says she wishes she could feel Grandma's presence, but part of me feels like my Mom is blocking it out, because it makes her sad. I don't know. I guess I just trust in Grandma being there for me always, whenever I need her.

So, though it is late, Happy Birthday, Grandma. Feel free to visit me often.
fireflys_locket: (Kagome Stupid Weather - fireflys_locket)
Finally, there's something I can actually do. I can take myself for a walk. Well, maybe not outside by myself. But I can walk circles around my basement. That counts, right?

The nice thing about this chapter of Add More ~ing is also that I totally get it. It's talking about why certain people bug you. A lot of the times, what bothers you about someone is something you also see within yourself. No big surprise there. The person that drives me nuts most of the time is my Stepfather. He's super OCD - like one speck of dirt drives him crazy OCD. And as I've admitted in my recent post, I'm totally OCD, too.

But I admit it. I even embrace it most of the time. And for the most part, it stays internal and doesn't bother other people. My Stepfather won't admit to his OCD. He laughs and calls us crazy when my Mom and I talk about it. The only reason I really tease him about it is because of how in denial he is about it. And the fact that his OCD gets in everybody's way. Constantly. And it drives me nuts. Meanwhile, I do try to stay away from doing things that bothering him, because I understand what it is like. I don't get the same respect and understand of my issues.

I guess there are other people and issues I could explore with this, but I'm tired.
fireflys_locket: (Soft Shock (Hachi) - fireflys_locket)
Christmas is only 10 days away. So far, I haven't had a huge breakdown. Or maybe that's what happened last month when I watched those old Christmas concerts. Maybe it has already passed.

To be honest, I've had a few nice moments in the last week, where I was almost happy with Christmas. A week ago, when my Uncle Jim came in, Jan had us all over for a little family dinner. Jan's house was beautifully decorated, and when I walked in, I was excited. Then, on Friday, my Mom, Jan, and I went over to our cousin Gilda's for a fabulous lunch. Both of these events were great because they were with family, yet weren't too crowded for me. I never end up going anywhere on Christmas, because the places I could go are overly crowded. I guess I really just want something in between crowded and alone. (Or maybe I just want Morgan...)

Tuesday, I spent most of my day with Jan baking cookies. It was so much fun. We made the iced sugar cookies I remember her bringing when I was little. This year, I actually worked hard to make them and other cookies, which is something I've been looking forward to since I knew Jan and Paul would be moving here.

So, as weird as it seems, I guess you could say I'm enjoying the season... more than I have for about 10 years, at least. The only sad part - besides not having Morgan - is that Grandma is gone. I keep having random thoughts of her, where, for a moment, I think my heart is going to break open. But I ease the thoughts to the side, because I have so many things I need to do. Probably, when everyone is off to their Christmas parties, I'll have a little cry alone.
fireflys_locket: (Hachi Sad - fireflys_locket)
Tomorrow, I will be sitting in front of my computer sorting and backing up my files. I'm not even kidding. That will be my day. Now, before you feel too bad for me, realize that I have three dinners that I'm positive I'd be totally welcome at. It's my choice to stay home. I have no desire to pick at a salad, while I watch people eat turkey. I hate looking at meat when you can't even tell what it was, but a turkey... yuck. Almost as bad as that pig in Spun of Silver. Okay, that's way worse. It had a face. And this line of thought has officially made me ill. :(

Besides the fact that I'd have a hard time eating while other people stuff themselves with the poor turkey, just the idea of having that many people in a room just doesn't work for me anymore. Fore a while there, I went to be with my Dad and his girlfriend's family for Thanksgiving. And if I think about it too much, I actually feel a little sad. It is kind of nice to be part of something. I've been thinking a lot about things like that, lately.

But hey, really, the only part of Thanksgiving I have cared about for a long time is the pumpkin pie. And I will be happily eating that by myself in front of my computer. My Mom said she'd put it in the oven tonight, so while everyone is gone tomorrow, I'll have something special. And that's it; that's my Thanksgiving.

There's a part of me that thinks I should try to do something to honour the thought behind the holiday. And It's not that I don't feel thankful for things in my life, but it's hard to be in a good mood for holidays, when you're depressed. I know I'm not the only one. And this is what I do for holidays. This is how I deal. Because I can't deal with so many people at once. I wish I could have something in between everything and nothing, but that's just the way it is. You have to choose, and I always choose to hide away.

Honestly, though, I don't think I'll feel too lonely tomorrow. It's Christmas that I dread. Christmas is bad every year, but this year - the first without Grandma - is going to be heartbreaking.
fireflys_locket: (Kagome Stupid Weather - fireflys_locket)
My Aunt Jan loves gardening. Through her, I've come to enjoy it as well, though I still really don't know what I'm doing without her. Back in the first two years after my Mom and Joe married, my Mom planted tulips at this house. Once, she bribed me into helping her by offering to take me the get the third Harry Potter book, which had just come out recently. That was probably the last time there were flowers at our house. That's right, 1999. Sure, there were two weak looking rose bushes, but that was practically all.

And the reason there weren't tulips is because my Mom's back is really in bad shape. It has been all of these years. So, now that Jan is home for good, I figured that everyone would enjoy having flowers again. Or my Mom and I, I should say. I convinced her that Jan and I would be happy to plant flowers at our house. And we were... until Joe got involved.

Joe is super OCD. He won't admit to it; he thinks everything he does is simply "the right thing" to do and that everyone should be like him. (Excuse me while I retch.) Of course, he was going to be bothered by a change. Even a good one. And it's not like we were doing anything crazy. We are just planting along the house. In spots where flowers used to be. That's it.

So, my Mom was dragging her feet about telling him what was going to happen, and when she finally did tell him, she messed up some of the details. He fumed for a while, then, adjusted to it. But when we starting digging in spots where my Mom forgot to tell him about, he blew up again.

And just as Joe is so good at doing, he sucked the enjoyment out of planting. I don't care if he hates me. I honestly don't. I couldn't care less what he thinks of me. I can't stand him. Occasionally, he'll do something nice, but before I even have time to appreciate it, he'll turn around and do something stupid or rude. He hates pets and even takes a stand against flowers. It's so hard to live in a house that doesn't even feel alive. It's so detrimental to my writing... or even, living. I wish I didn't have to live with him... but I'm totally stuck. So, time and time again, I just have to deal with his crap. Ugh.
fireflys_locket: (Eureka Concerned - roxora)
It was another tough week.  I've had worse weeks, but this was a very bad one. My Dad finally arrived to pick up his stuff left at Grandma's house, and he brought a friend with him, Joe. This friend was a jerk. In the truck, after meeting me a block or so previous, he reached over my Dad to put his wrist on my leg and said, "Nice tan." An insult joke, of course, since I'm about as pale as possible. But he touched me. And guess what? Did my Dad get upset or say anything to protect his daughter? Nope. He laughed. Apparently, it was a great joke!

After a couple more blocks, my dad asked how I've been doing. "Okay..." I answered. "Okay? Sort of okay?" My Dad replies. And his friend says, "You're young; you'll get over it." Yeah, my Grandma just died, but apparently, I'll get over it. Thanks, Dude!

This guy proceeded to insult my Grandma's house, dig around in her drawers (and medicine cabinet...) to see what was left, and throw a dime at me. Plus, he drove recklessly through stop signs, while he and my Dad laughed about it. I had to keep praying I wasn't going to die this way. I deserve better.

At least now that's over.

But on top of that, my Joe's been extra touchy lately. Like I don't have enough upset feelings right now. Like I need him to shout and bang stuff around because I want to watch TV with my Mom for a couple of hours at night after he's had 7. Or that I didn't wipe the dog I'm watching's paws, when I did. Stupid little stuff. It makes me wish I wasn't so messed up, and therefore, stuck here. But what can I do; this is my life, so I have to put up with his crap. That's just how it is.

It's not a very good environment for writing though, I'll tell you that. I did manage to write about 9 pages last week, while he was also out of the house most of that time.

And I did have a couple of good points over the week. <3 One where [livejournal.com profile] fluffyfledgling sent me some old drawings she'd made for me, and the other, last night with Sierra. It was so good to get out of the house and away from Joe. Wish it could happen more often.
fireflys_locket: (Kagome Stupid Weather - fireflys_locket)
...is exhausting.

I guess I could explain my week by saying I was in a dumpster. Literally. There were some ups to balance the downs but not many.

Basically, it started when my Aunt decided to sell whatever was left in my Grandma's house to this guy for $600. Jan has been wanting to pay people to come in and help for weeks, because she was exhausted and tired of cleaning. To her, this was a blessing: for some one to pay her to get things out of the house. But she was so desperate to be done with everything that she didn't really think of anyone else.

See, we hadn't actually gone through everything. Which was my goal. I didn't want to accidently miss something that might be important to keep. And maybe there wasn't anything else, but I wanted to actually know that. To feel sure.

So, meanwhile, I had no idea about this deal and was relieved to hear that my Dad was finally going to show up to get his stuff. When I called my Mom to let her know we'd be going down to Grandma's, she stopped me. She said we couldn't get anything else out of the house until the guy picked up whatever he wanted. This deal no one had bothered to tell me about. I was upset. Not just with Jan, but with my mother for not thinking before she agreed to the deal. There was at least one thing I still wanted, that she wouldn't let me bring with us the night before, these lovely pink dessert dishes. Now, they were stuck as part of the deal.

And then, I also knew my Dad was going to be furious. And I was going to have to deal with it. Let's just make it clear: because of my Dad's obsessive spending and gambling he was unable to pay his bills to the point that he had no internet, cable, long distance, or gas last month. And he had years to get his stuff out of my Grandma's house. I couldn't count all the Springs I said we should make an effort that Summer. However, he did help us a lot when we first started to clean out the house. So, I did feel bad that when he finally got himself together, I had to give him the bad news. He yelled at me, as I knew he would. But it still hurt, because I had nothing to do with the agreement. In fact, I was angry, too! ~_~;

Anyways, after several phones calls between the parties, things calmed down... sort of. But when my Mom got home she also let me know that the bags of recycling we had spent hours getting together the night before were thrown into the dumpster we rented at my Grandma's house, because Jan said they were "in the way". If you didn't know, I'm pretty serious about recycling. So, yes... I jumped into the dumpster to pull them out. Lucky, I had a good session of therapy that night. But I still went to bed fuming.

The next day, however, after another unhappy phone call from my Dad, my Mom went to the house and made an agreement to buy back the items my Dad wanted. And Jan did get back the pretty pink dessert dishes, as I asked her to. So... all's well that ends well? Except I'm still kind of hurt that Jan didn't think to ask me if there was anything else I wanted to do there. And when she called me yesterday, I explained that to her, in a calm sort of way. Because I don't think it would have helped anyone for me to hold it back. I told her I thought everyone had a valid point in the situation, but everyone was so focused on their own feelings that we hurt each other. She said that was a considerate way to think of things. But she also said that everyone always blames her for "doing the right thing".

Because my Aunt... and I won't said that I'm not at all like her, because I am in a lot of ways... always needs to be the victim. Always. She never feels loved enough. She always feels that she is blamed for everything. I am so thankful for the time we have spent in these last few months. It's been special, and we really needed each other. But this is something I knew would come up again.

So, things have been stressful and anxious, but now, I'm mostly depressed. Cleaning Grandma's house was part of my process. Now, I feel cut short of my mission. I just feel like shrinking away and disappearing into a story. Let the real world fade away for awhile. And yet... what I really want is for my real life to be beautiful and feel worth-while. I want to be happy. Truly happy. At least some of the time.

And as always... I just really want Morgan to hold me. Photobucket
fireflys_locket: (Tink Cries - peaces_icons)

Fair warning: This is an extremely depressing (somewhat insane) post. If you only want to read the Harry Potter portion of this post, skip to the second set of ellipses (...). I'm not going to LJ Cut any of this, because it all fits together, but I won't blame you for skipping my crying rants.
...

It's getting harder and harder. Being at Grandma's house. Looking at the spaces where furniture used to be. This was my childhood home. My home. How can this be happening? I miss Grandma so much. I've been just pushing along, knowing we have so much work to do. But I can feel it building. The terror after the house is sold. When it all comes into view. Grandma is gone. And she isn't coming back.

I had no idea this year was coming. Not that I didn't worry about Grandma often. But to think this actually happened. I just can't handle it. Never being able to call that number again. Never having someone there, always there, to listen whenever you need her. There is no one else, who can fill her space. I have a gaping hole. Just another aching need that can't be filled.

So, you see, when things are in a good place, it's not easy for people to bring up the idea that what I want most in the world might not exist. At this point, it was a very big mistake to suggest such a thing. I'll make it clear for people, who wonder, so they won't ask. If I thought Morgan didn't exist, if I lost my belief in him, I would kill myself. I wouldn't want to live in a world like that. I'd rather go up and be with Grandma in Heaven. And if that option didn't exist, then I rather live in a delirium. I already have to often lose myself in delirium to keep myself breathing. Do you realize this? I pretend Morgan is around. I have to imagine he's holding me every night to get to sleep. I talk to him when I'm alone. Okay? I'm crazy. And I don't give a damn what anyone thinks of that. If I didn't have that, I wouldn't have made it this far. He is the reason I keep breathing.

Meanwhile, the tension in the house has been building. I had a fight with my Mother last night, which is rare. I'm still kind of angry.

So, due to those three things, I was up until after 2AM. Crying until I lost my mind and started talking to Morgan. I reached a point where I was actually quite happy... for me. Just so you know who I really am. I'm crazy.
...

Today, I'm crying again. After another bad night's sleep (at least not due Slendy obsession), I got out of bed just in time to watch the world premiere of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2. I cried a lot, off and on the whole time, but at the end they brought together, if I can remember correctly: David Heyman, David Barron, David Yates, Steve Kloves, Jo Rowling, Daniel Radcliffe, Emma Watson, Rupert Grint, and the head of Warner Bros.. They all gave speeches, and I cried and cried. It was a beautiful end to a wonderful 10 years. More, of course, if you consider this the end of the first generation of the Harry Potter franchise as a whole, as I do. And that makes this another goodbye, that I can't handle.

I will probably link to a clip of it later, but as Jo put it, "Whether you return by page or big screen, Hogwarts will always be there to welcome you home." If you love Harry Potter anywhere near as much as I do, you need to see these speeches. And you will cry. Jo cried. Emma cried. If you love Harry Potter, you will cry. I'm watching the whole premiere again right now to see these moments.
...

As I come to the end of this emotional post, I can only say I'm truly glad I have therapy tonight. I really need it.


fireflys_locket: (Heaven's Stairs - soporifical)
There shouldn't be any expectation of things being easy. But when I start to fall apart, even with a good reason, it gets a little scary. Especially at this time of year. Why is this time of year such a curse?

Honestly, I still am probably doing pretty well. I had one hard night before the viewing. I was up until about 1. The viewing, itself, was fine. The body didn't even look like her. Grandma's spirit was gone. So, looking at her wasn't really sad or scary. When people started coming in, I hid out in the video room where the slideshow, that Jim and I made, was playing. Family and friends of my Mom came to hug me. Some of them stayed by me for awhile. It was almost nice. 

I had some issues with the funeral. And maybe I should have seen it coming. But it felt so meaningless to me. I didn't realize how far I've gotten from the Catholic traditions. I mean, when I heard Jan and other members of the family talking about how Grandma was safe and happy in Heaven, that was fine. I do believe in those things. But the Funeral Mass... even though, I could remember the steps from all my years at Catholic school, they didn't mean anything to me anymore. It probably didn't help when Uncle Jim in his speech talked about Grandma doing her job by raising God-fearing children. I hate that word. You're supposed to love God and know He loves you. Fear and love don't go well together, in my opinion. You should respect Him. Trust in Him. But fear? You're supposed to fear bad things, not good ones. That's just how I feel.

Anyways, it was weird to hear relatives talk about how beautiful the funeral was when it felt so empty for me. Sure, the church was beautiful. I still love churches - lighting candles, looking at the statues, and feeling a quiet presence. But the prayers and traditions didn't mean much to me. I'm sure it was what Grandma wanted, though. That's all that matters. And when I talked to Jill about it, I felt better. Now, I know even a little bit more about myself, I guess. I really did expect to connect a little more to the Funeral Mass. I guess that's just not something I need now. I feel like I have my own close connection to God. I don't need all those extras anymore.

My second hard night came after the company left. I convinced John and Denise to stay another night, so we could throw Ethan a birthday party. I think everyone had a good time, even though we didn't end up going to Olympic Fun Center (They wouldn't let us bring in food - ugh!). But once Ethan was gone, I knew I'd be miserable. He kept me busy and happy. They left early Thursday morning. I spent the afternoon with Jan and Paul helping to organize their house mostly to keep myself occupied. Then, I had therapy. But once I got home, I started feeling sick. I ended up crying until 1AM again.

Yesterday, I spent all day out with my Mom. We got our hair done and went to Borders. I spent so much money, but I hadn't been to the big store in over a year. I came home exhausted and overstimulated. I thought I was going to have another bad night, but I managed to avoid it, somehow. I guess it's hard to know what to expect in the coming months. Another horrible Summer? Jan told me we won't let it happen. I just... don't know.
fireflys_locket: (Tink Cries - peaces_icons)


Vilma Stigliano: wonderful Sister, Mother, Grandmother, and GG (Great-Grandmother).

April 4, 1923 ~ May 12, 2011

ETA: Yellow Flower is a poem I wrote for Grandma while at the flower shop picking the arrangement for her casket.

Surprises

May. 6th, 2011 11:18 am
fireflys_locket: (Clare Dance Suprise - degrassijunk)
Life is full of surprises. Last week, I sort of made up with Christen. And this week, Grandma is more alert and focused on getting out of the hospital, not just moving on to Heaven. It's really amazing. She is acting a little confused, though, which bothers me. But we think it's a medicine thing... she's on so many. I guess only time will tell if she's really getting better. I'm still kind of scared to trust in it.

Yesterday, I also spent some time planting at Jan's house. I really didn't want to go at first, but it was beautiful day. I'm glad I was there. That house also feels relatively safe to me. It's easily a family home already, probably helped that I (just barely) remember back when my Great Aunt lived there. The flowers are gorgeous, but there's still plenty of room for more flowers. But be sure, Jan will have it full of lovely flowers in time. She's like a garden faerie. HeH.

Meanwhile, I've been able to get a bit of writing done in the last week. I wrote a chapter of Magic Inc. last Friday. And last night, I finally broke and started a new Degrassi fic. I've been watching so many great fan videos on YouTube, and it makes me want to write so much. ^_^; This time around, I was inspired by this video, and the idea of Julia being the one to live instead of Eli. The video is lightly femmeslashy, which is fine, though I have a slightly different idea for my story. It's also probably going to have a little supernatural twist at the end, which I wish I could leave as a complete mystery, but I have a feeling if it comes out of nowhere, readers won't be happy.

The structure of the story is going to be made up of mostly very short chapters (like a page or two), and every other chapter is Julia writing a letter to Eli as part of her therapy. It's another sort of abstract concept like Three Days. And I don't know if I'll stick to it. It seems like a lot of work to put into fanfiction. I think I'll at least need to wait until the DVDs come out before I continue because I want to follow all the Misfit scenes in the story. But anyways, that's my new crazy idea.

I stayed up too late writing. :/ It's taking time out of what I wanted to do last night and this morning. I haven't even taken a shower yet. Eek.
fireflys_locket: (Soft Shock (Hachi) - fireflys_locket)
Grandma is dying. Physically, the doctor said she's normal, but Grandma has given up on living. After she'd reached a month in the hospital, her will to live just disappeared. She sank into depression, and now, she's just waiting. Everyone keeps hoping for a miracle... and it's not impossible. But is it wrong that I've given up, too? I would love to have a few more years with Grandma, but she's 88. She's lived a good life. It isn't fair to ask her to stay alive just for us.

Last week, I thought Grandma might die any day. It seems that might not be the case. As much as Grandma is ready... her body may not be just yet. Once I adjusted to that idea, I've reached a strange sort of calm. And this week, I feel almost disappointed for Grandma having to stay here still when she so badly wants to go to Heaven. It's strange.

When I talked to Jill about it all, she said I was in tune with a more Eastern Philosophy. When I told her I thought it would be harder for me if Grandma got better for a short time, just to end up back in the hospital soon after, she said I was self-aware, not selfish (as I thought). And I know it's going to hurt so, so much when Grandma leaves us, but it's as though I'm already a few weeks into the grieving process. I think I'm the only one, who is as ready as possible for what will eventually happen. Not that being ready means it's not going to hurt. Jill compared it to hitting your thumb with a hammer. Even if you know it's going to happen, it's still going to hurt like Hell. And this will, too. I know it.

So why am I so calm? I don't understand it. Jill says because, like in my stories, I know death is not the end. As much as I know I'm going to miss being able to talk to Grandma on the phone whenever I need to talk... that's already been gone for more than a month. Grandma barely responds to me when I go see her. Jill told me that many people say it's like someone has one foot in both worlds. More and more they spend time in the other world, until they completely fade away. But she thinks it should be comforting that they people in that situation are disappointed to awake still in this world: it must mean there's something wonderful waiting on the other side.

It would have been lovely to spend another Summer with Grandma, but maybe it just wasn't meant to be. It's not for me, or any of us, to decide. So, I'm just waiting... waiting for the intense pain... waiting for the eventual recovery. Waiting for Grandma's freedom. And if a miracle decides to come, I'd welcome it, too.

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