Category Archives: meta

It gets better(ish)

I was messaging back and forth with someone on my tumblr blog about something I’d reblogged about being middle-aged (ish, I know 40 is the new 30 *rolls eyes*) and mentally ill.

I tagged myself as being 42 and having bipolar 2, which prompted that person’s message, and thus far we’ve had a few back and forth messages about bipolar 2.   Among other things, I mentioned that I think (and still do) that I am a better writer when I am really depressed.

Something they said in response struck me (to paraphrase):  “I don’t know who I am without meds.”

I used to feel that way, and when I went to check out their tumblr profile I was reminded that they were in their late 20s.

It made sense, even though I don’t know how long this person has been struggling with their diagnosis.  Here I am, 42, and I’ve been doing the bipolar diagnosis thing for 10 years.  I’ve had this blog under one name or another for 10 years, however lately neglected it’s been.

And gosh, do I remember how fucking agonizing life was for a really long time.  First, because I was miserable and couldn’t fix it.  Then, miserable because I knew what was wrong with me but the meds weren’t a cure.  Then, more miserable because the meds would work for a while and then just stop working.

Never mind all the stuff about the impact bipolar has had on who I have managed (or abandoned) relationships with– family, friends, and work– and how hard those relationships were to navigate around trying to keep a stuff upper lip and keep going.  Never mind all the stuff about work and achieving what other folks expected of me and castigating myself for not being enough of a success.

A very big part of the angst and the agony was about questioning my identity– was I just malfunctioning neurotransmitters and faulty hormone levels?  Who was I if it required medication to change my perceptions to something “normal?”  Wasn’t there, surely, a “normal” that existed outside my ups(ish) and very deep downs? Wasn’t it really a character flaw inside my personality (whatever that was) that meant I wasn’t morally strong enough to just push my way through the depression?

I said to this tumblr friend that I had been through that and at some point it had stopped bothering me.  I guessed that in all the thrashing towards leaving my marriage, I’d unconsciously resolved the question in favor of “I am worth it,” and stopped questioning whether “meds me” or “non-meds me” was the real person who deserved to have attention paid to them.

I think this is probably true– although heavens know, I could go back to when I was blogging here then and re-read my posts to see if that’s what I was thinking then.  I’m not going to, though– because it matters less than what I know to be true now.

Here’s what I know to be true now.

It mostly gets better.  Better(ish), if you like.

Infuriating, right?  Everyone who’s not inside your head tells you this and it is so damned hard to believe in the midst of the darkness.  Someone told me this back then and I emphatically refused to believe it.

It’s true anyway.

I don’t want to navel gaze about self-help or sports-jargon words like “resilience” or “adversity” or “living with your struggle.”  I think that “keep calm and carry on,” is as close as I can come to paraphrasing what I’ve come to accept makes sense for me.  Or maybe Winston Churchill’s “if you’re going through hell, just keep going.”

I kept going and decided to do that even when things were objectively terrible– and not just because my perspective was tinged by depression and panic and very little hope that things would improve or that I deserved to keep going.

A lot of times I tried to trust in the therapeutic value of work– not in some big, high-minded way, but in an “at least I accomplished something today” kind of way.  I have journaled erratically over the last several years, and when I have it’s been focused on what I have been doing that means I accomplished something.

Sometimes it’s been– I fed someone something delicious.

Sometimes it’s been– I got someone back their health insurance, or hired someone who’s succeeded, or I gave someone the space they needed to attend to their health and still keep their job.

Sometimes it’s been– I made someone I care about laugh.

Sometimes it’s been– I cut back that overgrown, unblooming rosebush that scratched up everyone who came near it.

I hacked back that rose hedge the week after I left my marriage and moved.  I was scratched all to hell by the end, and I sweated the whole way through it, sore and tired from all the work.

It’s been 6 years since then, and that hedge is more or less orderly, blooms all summer long, and it’s beautiful in its own droopy, old-fashioned, slightly scraggly, occasionally thorny way.  Those things are all true, standing right up on top of the hedge.  But three feet away, it’s a well-put together rose hedge that delights everyone who sees it.  (We get notes through the mail slot about how nice a rose hedge it is.)

It’s work, though.  That first pruning was not a magical fix and it was ugly and bare for a while.  I have to tend to that hedge every year and cut out the dead parts, feed the roots, and take a step back to figure out how to fit other parts of the garden around it.

That rose hedge is a little too heavy handed a metaphor, but it’s true.  I had to hack my life back down to the ground for it to grow back– but it worked.  It got better.

Gardening metaphors aside, though, it doesn’t mean I don’t still get depressed, or anxious, or agitated and doubtful and occasionally helpless.  It does mean that having decided to keep going, there are more and more successes over time that are objective proof that I am mostly making the right decisions, and that whoever I am, with or without meds, I’m doing okay.  And then, I feel better more quickly than I had in past years.

It gets mostly better.  And when it doesn’t, it’s okay.  It will get better(ish) again.  Just please keep going.

Why I don’t “like” many things– a call to comment

Schmutzie has a great post here about quitting the “like” option on FB and how it changed her feed and her interactions with people for the better.  It reminds me of blogging 1.0, when we were all on blogger and there WAS NO LIKE BUTTON AND WE ALL USED NETSCAPE for a browser AND WE LIKED IT (ahem) THAT WAY.  Uphill, both ways, on a 28.8 bit modem.  Rah.  Hipsters on my internet lawn.

I say in my “about” page that I don’t “like” back a lot of people who stop by & like posts– and that’s not because I don’t appreciate that you stopped by & took the time to read, but because I am a bit of a blog-luddite-curmudgeon, and, while I admit, my time is limited and I am really bad about being social at visiting everyone who stops by and leaving comments, (and thank you, again, for visiting) I started blogging when you either lurked or took the leap to leave a comment and engaged and took the risk of either being ignored by the big name bloggers out there, or of making good friends for life with your fellow denizens of the ‘tubes.

I have re-made the commitment to reply back to everyone who does leave a comment– and now I need to take that next step again and not just reply but visit back (or email, for those of you who do not have blogs, *gasp*) for everyone who comments, and to make the time to explore and see about expanding that internet circle from the one I started back before there were mobile platforms and a laptop still weighed over ten pounds.  : )   So– no, I won’t “like” your blog.  But if you leave a comment or question, I will reply, and I will get out of my curmudgeonly shell and visit, just like at the dawn of the tubes when there was no like button at all.

I’m going to thumbs-down the thumbs-up.  How about you?

Ways of looking

I follow the English public thinker Alain de Botton on Twitter, and while I don’t always agree with him, he does provoke thought in his posts, books, and links, which of course is the whole purpose of being a live, working philosopher.  Yesterday, he tweeted about the “evils” of photography versus learning to draw and linked to an article in The Philosopher’s Mail about phone-photography versus sketching.  I don’t agree with the article, by and large.

The points I chose to take away from the article were:

1) we shouldn’t be living our lives through our gadgets, and that phone camera snaps shouldn’t substitute for being actually present in a moment, for noticing the minute details versus just collecting proof that Kilroy Was Here before we move on quickly, because there’s a (socially constructed and inherently false) schedule to keep to so that we can document to the next snapchattable moment, and,

2) by cultivating a “slow” skill such as drawing, especially when it’s something that doesn’t come naturally to us, we learn to take in the world in a different way, to truly notice the depth of beauty all around us and all the fine details that we can breathe in if we just look,

3) the ability to look and perceive both the whole and its details is important.

I agree, fully, that there are too many of us who are distracted in our everyday doings, but it didn’t start with the camera– perhaps with the telegraph, or same day post.  The fact is, life is fast and has been getting faster since the invention of the printing press (darn that Gutenberg, he had no value for the small quiet value of hand-inked vellum), and “drawing” as a way to stop & smell the roses is all well and good as a metaphor.  It’s not so great as a general moral proposition.

The points inherent in the article with which I take issue are, if not legion, ones that have been brought up by people far more articulate than me–

1) that a camera phone photograph cannot inherently capture finer details,

2) that the takers of camera phone photographs are all rushing, rushing, rushing, rather than– pausing to notice and focus in on that detail– the cornice of that building, that tulip, that couple embracing,

 

3) that the takers of camera phone photographs do not take the time, later, to share that captured detail with other people later, either in print or on one of the many social media sites where photographers congregate to share photos, look for those details they personally find beautiful and worthy of documentation and sharing (Instagram? Flickr?  Twitter?  Does Mr. de Botton not know about photography social media platforms, or that photos can be shared on the platform he uses?)

4) that all the details & moments captured on camera phones are inherently “shallow”– selfies or fashion shots or pictures of expensive meals or other consumables rather than externally objective objects of beauty– travel, nature, animals, smiles, architecture, “what a wondrous thing is man” when he manages to capture a macro of a peacock feather– when, in fact, a review of any mobile photography website will show you the whole range of human and earthly existence,

5) that drawing is inherently and always better than phone (or any other) photography, and that photography is not, therefore, art, however “art” is defined,

6) that camera phone photography, as an “art” and a “skill” is something that does not inspire the doer toward improvement, toward other forms of the art, toward more technique or toward gatherings with like-minded persons who likewise seek to gather & appreciate the beauty out there in the world.  (One word/hashtag: #instameet.)  I didn’t start out with a camera phone, for my own self, but my little point & shoots, and my desire to improve my own naked eye shots of the things out there in the world have certainly caused me to read more about how to frame, how to compose, whether to upgrade to a DSLR (and I did) so that I could capture better, finer, more beauty than I had been able to heretofore.  I have met and know many, many, many folks online & in person whose “gateway” drug was the point & shoot or the iPhone, but now they go on photo safaris & print out real art, real beauty, real moments that reflect our world as it is– or as we’d like it to be.

I have no problem, at all, with people who have the time and perseverance to sketch, paint, or engage in other forms of non-photography art.  I admire the talent and ambition and stick-to-itiveness that it takes.  But it is an unassailable truth that life does move quickly, and all the slowing down and taking time to smell the roses (or sketch them, as the argument would suppose) doesn’t change the fact that in the every day churn of it all, sometimes we don’t have the time to stop and sketch, because we haven’t got the concatenation of timing, life circumstances and courage to choose to do anything other than get to work and take care of our selves and our loved ones in mundane, material ways.

It would be nice, lovely, ideal, to live a more artistic, more reflective life in more moments over the spread of a lifetime– but sometimes, realistically speaking, a camera phone shot and five minutes to notice whatever image you saw is all the time you have in a day to notice the beauty and humanity around you.

Five minutes’ pause on your way is better than none.

I also freely admit that there are a hell of a lot of pretty pictures of flowers and beloved children and cats of no particular artistic inspiration on the internet and in photo albums all over the world– though I would also argue that art isn’t always the point of a photograph, because it is also useful in capturing a moment, preserving a memory, and whether it does it with more or less technique or artistry is less important than the preservation itself.

In that regard, photography in its speed does what sketching (and those without patience or time or talent or any combination of those you choose to combine in your moral judgment) does not– it preserves a moment in time which, looked back upon, recalls happiness, even if it is done artlessly.

I’d also argue that today’s selfie might be someone else’s coup de foudre— art is at least partly subjective, after all, and however much sarcasm someone else might inflect the term with, to the aficionado, an iPhone shot of “nail art” has meaning and increases the general quantum of happiness– if some of it is at the shallow end of life’s pool, why does everything have to be deep? I’m not trying to say that there is no objective truth, or larger, important set of truths, but if a shallow happiness works for that person in that particular moment, or if something that seems trite to one person is meaningful to another– well.  I’m happy to wait while someone is standing on the sidewalk before me, taking a camera phone shot of something they find to have meaning.

 All pictures taken on my Google Droid phone, and uploaded to my Flickr, via Instagram & its various automatic filters.

 

Oversimplification and stigmatization of mental illness

The below set of illustrations and descriptions of mental illness “monsters” came up on my fandom tumblr from tumblr user mouzekiller and it turned out I had a lot of thoughts about it.  I’m copying and pasting here, because, um, some of my fandom tumblr stuff is super-specialized and kind of weird and I don’t feel comfortable linking it here.

mouzekiller:

mental disorders in form of “monsters”.
monster description:

BPD:

“The borderline personality disorder is one of the most delicate but perhaps most sinister of monsters. The gather is small swarms around their victims and use pheromones to heighten the emotions of said victim, before feeding off on the emotion itself. They feed upon any emotion but tend to favor feelings of depression.

The monster is made almost completely of a clear ice, rendering it invisible. Only the maple shaped leaf on its tail is visible to the naked eye and looks like a falling leaf. At times, when the monster gorges itself too much on any given emotion its can overwhelm them and they simply shatter like glass.”

Depression:

“The depression monsters floats around endlessly, always covering his eyes becuase of his depressed state. Because of this he always bumps into things causing more distress to himself each time.
Hugs are known to relieve this poor creatures levels of depression and lift its mood slightly.”

Dissociative Identity Disorder:

“Dissociative Identity disorder (also known as Multiple Personality disorder) can be characterized by its ability to alter its form into whatever it likes. As well as changing itself physically, the creature also takes on different personas of itself each with their own personality.

Occasionally, the monster can become confused about its original identity and multiple personas can play out in the same from, complete with a mish-mash anatomy. No ‘DID’ monster looks or acts the same as another.”

Paranoia:

“Paranoia is similar in its biology to Anxiety and they can often be found together. Paranoia uses its tall ears like a radar, scanning the area. Due to the tight curled up nature of their ears the sounds often get confused and muffled meaning Paranoia almost often hears the wrong thing. They are quick to judge and quick to point the finger of blame.

They sometimes work as minions for Schizophrenia and seek out victims for it.”

Bi-Polar & Anxiety:

“The Bipolar monster is always at odds with itself, its two head constantly bickering with each other in a language of gibberish. The blue head is always depressed and easily irritable and the orange head it always on a high and in a frenzy.
Other monsters tend to stay away from Bipolar due to the constant noise it created with its arguing. “

“Anxiety is small enough to sit on its victim’s shoulder and whisper thing in to their unconscious. No-one has ever seen the face of Anxiety for it always wears a skull as a mask.
They often carry small objects linked to their victim’s anxieties. Clocks are a favorite.”

Schizophrenia:

“The Schizophrenia monster is a vile and disgusting creature that manipulates its victims into doing its bidding. It uses hallucinogenic gases secreted form the pores on his underbelly to control and influence others to do what he wants.

They are often accompanied by other monsters such as Paranoia, with Schizophrenia taking up an authoritative role much like a circus ringleader.”

Social Anxiety:
“The Social Anxiety monster spends most of it life underground or in secluded sheltered areas, away from human contact. Because of this their skin appears pale and anemic apart from hard plates that serve as as a means of defense.

They will shy away from all contact, even from a fellow monster making them elusive and rarely seen. They are from the same biological family as Anxiety and Paranoia but due to their extreme way of life they have evolved to look quite different.”

(SC: and here’s where I had thoughts…)

I am having a hard time trying to respond positively to these drawings, including the real, incredible talent exhibited by the artist, zestydoesthings, and the imaginative and mostly accurate descriptions (remember, your mileage may vary, and mine certainly does when it comes to bipolar, contrasted with what’s listed above) all to the side.

On the one hand, I think it’s really important that people find ways to cope with their disorders, and if expressing themselves artistically and finding a way to imagine what’s going on in their head in this format helps them work their way to a stabler self by seeing and then “taming” their monster, then perhaps it’s all to the good.

On the other hand, I think a lot of people with mental health issues already are faced with generalized social stigma against being “crazy.” When you’re identified as your disease— as monsters— that stigmatizing, alienating, reductionist behavior dictates that you’re no one and nothing but your crazy, you possess no real emotions, no ambitions, no real self, no dreams, just crazy, and it creates doubts and anxieties in the suffering person that are hard to get past.  Those marginalizing behaviors create a false sense of other and create a dissociation and an unhealthy case of denial in the person suffering the mental disorder. They feel guilty for something that isn’t their fault, and that just isn’t healthy if they’re going to learn to identify that they’re getting into a bad mental state and they need to do something before it gets worse, be it by reaching out to talk to someone, getting their meds switched, or doing whatever else it is that they need to do to feel better.

I guess I worry about oversimplification.  About dissociation and escaping into the trap of “I’m fine as long as I just take my meds, it will keep my monster at bay.”  About secrecy about your disorder even to people whom you might be able to trust, and to not more generally just owning up to the fact that you have feelings, whether or not they’re a bit more amplified than someone else’s.  They’re still your feelings, and you have a right to them, and to have them acknowledged, and to learn to express them in a way that’s safe for you.

Until the person with a mental disorder accepts and integrates their own monster and knows— it’s part of who they are and they are not a bad person because of their diagnosis— and decides that society and neuronormative people who who blithely toss off shit like “OMG, she was so bipolar, she was wicked moody” can go fuck themselves, because no, they don’t know what it means, and no, they don’t get to define you, because you— you are still human, and if you’re a monster, so aren’t we all, because one of the defining qualities of humanity seems to be our capacity to be inhumane to each other.

We all have monsters inside us.  Jealousy.  Anger.  Self-doubt.  Rage. Racism.  Sexism.  Self-absorption.  Willful blindness.  Those things may not fall within the ambit of the Diagnostic & Statistical Manual (which, fuck the DSM anyway) but they’re every bit as pernicious as someone who’s “officially”  crazy.  Until we recognize that the gamut of “normal” human emotions lead people to do monstrous things, too, I guess I’ll continue to worry about “monstrous” depictions of mental disorders— because I know more “crazy” people living sane, compassionate lives than I could list if I had enough Klonopin to let me stay up long enough to write it all down and not go totally manic.

We can’t forget the green-eyed monster, and the times we all were so mad the monster inside us saw red— were those times when we weren’t “sane?”

Heck on wheels, hell of a ride

My first driver’s license picture was awesome.  I’m still sad I had to turn it in for the renewal, because really?  I was having not just fantastic hair but fantastic everything the day I passed my first driver’s test.

My current picture isn’t so bad.  I look a bit gaunt in the way that ladies’ faces thin out as one crests 35 and heads toward 40;  I’m also a little squint-eyed, since for whatever reason they make you take off your glasses– crazy, if you ask me, since my license is, in fact, vision-restricted.  Compared with my passport, though, where I look like a hungover Yertle the Turtle?  I’m not going to complain.

Driving has always been a mixed thing to me; when I didn’t have a car, I used the T and while I cursed the inconvenience at times, I was never unaware of the luxury of living in Boston and/or a state where it was, in fact, possible to get from one place to another without a car, even if it was a little harder in some parts than others.  I know that isn’t the case everywhere, and that cars really are freedom (and the lack of cars are a trap).  I enjoyed cruising with friends in high school, music loud and rolling slow with the windows down at the beach, wasting gas all summer long and checking out cuties no one had the metaphorical balls to get out of the car to talk to.  I’m not a huge gearhead– I appreciate a good-looking car, but I’d never waste the money on one.  (I saw the new Subaru sportscar recently and admired its looks, but mostly I thought– I bet that gets awesome traction.)  At the end of the day, I always come back to the station wagon, because if you’re going to pack up and go, you’ve got to have room for a bookcase.

I think that’s as good a criteria for choosing a car as some other.

Cars can be a trap, though– if you’re stuck with someone who’s a terrible driver, or critiques every damned thing you do, it’s a nightmare, and bad traffic, year after year on a commute, can wear down even the most patient of souls.  Certainly, I was glad to no longer be doing three state circuits when I gave up practicing law; conducting business by phone and dictating reports while driving in order to keep up with the billable hours took away the pleasure of– watching the scenery, listening to a book, even doing a continuing ed course because if you were going to drive five hours, you might as well learn, amiright?  And then, again, recently, I was glad to no longer be hauling across the worst of downtown Boston’s traffic, though of course probably part of the dread of that drive came from hating my job toward the end.

Still, though– it’s great to be able to get up and go, to drive by yourself, to find a windy, curved road at night and play Foo Fighters (as a for instance) too loudly (I make no secret about the fact that my inner driver is an 18 year old boy who’s kind of a jerk) while the cool late summer air comes in through the lowered windows and you feel the pedals and the wheel like they’re part of your limbs, each dip and curve and surge of the road like you and the engine are running, together.  It’s an escape, a solitude, a private space when you lack others– lord knows I spent almost a year sobbing to and from work while my marriage dissolved and I tried to decided what the fuck I should do.  I probably had more realizations during late-night drive home and pre-dawn pulls out of the driveway, just because it was an hour, alone to myself, where I could think whatever I wanted.  Pre-dawn, as the sky changes color, is a thought-provoking time in the car, I have found.  I listened to a lot of albums that I needed to hear to tell me how to feel, because I was numb and not ready to accept all the decisions I was going to have to make, and that (outdated) in-dash CD system and great set of speakers surrounded me with lyrics that told me what I’d need to get ready to do.

When I started driving, I was more shy; I definitely have evolved into the person who does pull over this car, but who honks her horn less and doesn’t scream with road rage.  I don’t deal in threats anymore, I just do– pull right over.  You don’t like how I drive?  You can either drive, get out and find your own goddamned way, or shut the hell up.  I’m not going to take critiques of my competence (yes, projection much?) when you’re (universal) refusing to take up responsibility for doing it “better.”

The fact is, I think I’m a pretty good driver.  I know how to park, so much so that I have gotten applause from truck drivers and cops.  I know the back streets of Boston.  I have only once lost my car at the mall, and I blame blood sugar and walking pneumonia.  My car is equipped with a shawl, a fleece, an emergency kit (SO many people don’t have jumper cables), extra shoes & socks, mittens & a hat (also flashlights, toolkits, matches, swiss army knives, and more fast food napkins than you can shake a mood swing at).  I have a bag full of maps and print out directions well in advance of any one trip because yes, I’ve had GPS, but at the end of the day– I’ve evolved into the person who knows it’s probably best if I figure out my own way there, rather than wait for some omniscient shiny voice to tell me.  Reception is patchy, you know.

I don’t drive as much since this most recent job transfer as before– I use it on weekends, for errands, for pleasure jaunts to meet up with friends or when I’m driving with my Dad, since I do know how to drive a stick but his inherent paranoia and distrust make it impossible to suggest that we maybe drive his.  (Really, my car’s more comfortable, anyway, and I’m a better, faster driver.)

I’ve had one serious accident, where I fell asleep at the wheel and snapped the suspension; I was ok, the car, not so much.  I was 18.  Since then, I’ve had one rear-ender maybe ten years ago where the guy in front of me stopped short on an entry ramp to the highway, and one side-swipe three/four years ago where the other driver pulled an illegal turn and ripped my front bumper off.

A month ago, a distracted, lost driver changed his mind about where to go in a big intersection in town and decided that turning left into the side of my car was really what he should do.  It wasn’t a big deal, in that everybody was fine, his car was bigger than mine (SUVs, man) and my car could be driven, but one of my doors was dinged all to heck and was going to have to get fixed or it’d rust and get worse.  Considering that my faithful gold steed had 144,000 miles, rust is a potential concern.  They assessed fault, made an offer, and I dithered about it.  This past Friday, I got into an accident where the car two cars ahead of us stopped short.  It was the usual chain reaction; I didn’t hit my brakes soon enough and hit the back of the car in front of me– too fast to brake hard enough, and my foot slipped off the brake.  My radiator, hood, and front bumper all crunched– good, safe car design, my airbag didn’t even deploy, and the car actually drove the half mile home, radiator alarm blaring the whole way, so, 10/10, would buy the car again– but that– that was it.  Everyone was fine (well, who knows about the first car, that shithead took off) but not my poor car.

I got super-lucky.  The insurance company still honored the offer I hadn’t accepted, and the salvage company came and picked it up today.  I’m going to have to save a little more cash to buy a decent used car, but– they didn’t screw around with the value, and for the age of the car and the relative cosmetic damage before this most recent accident, it was a more than fair deal.

I take the T to work.  I can take the T to run most of my errands.  I can move pharmacies to the one next to work.  I can get a serious discount on a Zipcar membership through work if I need to just get away.  I should ride my bike more, get panniers, too, use that and just shop more frequently for food & the like.  If it fits on the bike, then I’m good.

I’ll be buying another car, nevertheless.

This morning, I was putting the keys in the empty car, stripped of plates and personal effects, and I didn’t want to close the door on– all of it.  My first new car, that I paid for with adult job wages, that I bought and used to adult, marriage & family trips, that I used to get myself out of bad situations and which was a haven on wheels even more than it was a stifling tin can.  But all things must come to an end– and sometimes they end with a bang, not a sideswipe.  I have learned to be zen about the fact that things change, that we can’t control everything, and that crap just happens sometimes, even when it’s not wholly your fault.  That doesn’t mean I’m not going to miss my stupid 2003 Mojave Beige VW Jetta Wagon with traction control, heated seats, alloy wheels and sunroof.

At least it happened head-on.  Somehow it makes the transition not quite so bad.  I knew I wouldn’t have that car forever, and it’s not like I named it, or expected it to last 300,000 miles.  Still, though– it wasn’t a heck of a lot of warning, but in those last three seconds, at least I saw it coming.

We’ll see where the road leads next, I suppose.

Stake

The rain, two days’ worth, beat down my sixth-year hibiscus, the one with blooms as big as platters, the red like arterial blood.  The stems bowed, flowers too heavy, the weather too much, but some fake plastic bamboo, staked behind, green-dyed hemp twine to pull it upright– it’s not the same, and who knows if it will stay sunny enough the rest of the growing season to take the stakes out, but I’ll brace my blossoms.  Not when the “choice” is cutting them off at the ground because something outside their control beat them down.

Enter, gory backblogstory

So, the husband very kindly managed to fix the breaking of my previous blog, even though I hadn’t expected him to and was in the middle of trying to figure out how to unbreak it myself/which of my techy friends I wouldn’t mind rummaging around in my archives.  But the husband is a generous person, and he managed to fix it.  And then, I imported it all here, with nary a corrupted file import, a small miracle in and of its very self.

If you’re so inspired, you can now read all the gory details going back to 2007.  Or the chocolate truffle post.  I recommend that one.

She Curmudgeon, now with added bipolarlawyercook and pre-breakup archives!    Also, some pretty damned tasty recipes and occasional amusing food-fail.  Come on, you know it’s a train wreck you want to watch.