elionwyr: (barefoot)

A few weeks ago, I was told by several people that they enjoy the things I post on Facebook. This is something I've been told privately as well, and it always surprises me. I know it isn't about everything I share - I know that if I share medical articles, for example, that the discussion will generally be not so pleasant. Which frustrates me.

I've been thinking a lot about the faces we present in our electronic world. I think I generally do it "right"...in my 25+ years online, I've only ever heard, "You are the same person online as you are in real life." Which is as it should be, IMNSHO. :)

But I think I'm going to rethink what I share on FB that might encourage angst. Because that's not what I want.

This is also mixed into a bit (or a lot) of over awareness of the opinions of other people. Yes, we're not supposed to care. Yes, when someone goes from compliments to referring to you in..less than kind ways, that says more about the speaker than it does about the object of their descriptor.

Otoh..one thing I struggle with, in regards of my reaction, is when someone describes a person that's supposed to be their friend in less than kind descriptors. It's frustration and it's anger and it's sad-making. It makes me wonder if the kind words people say to me are real, or if they're canceled out by privately stated negatives.

It's not supposed to matter.

It sorta kinda does.

Not-So-Secret Secret: I keep some of the more positive comments I've had typed out to me, because I trust the reflection of who I am in other people's words than I do in my own. I don't do it as much as I used to , because my inner negative voice is much quieter than it used to be..but, la! there it is.

Tangentially, I had a bit of exchange today about the remembering of people's secrets and statements. It's supposed to be a 'guy' thing, remembering what people say, and using it to one's advantage. I don't think it's gender specific. I do think it's cruel, more often than not, to use words that way. And I think it's more a sign of a person that feels a need to have weapons against others than it is a guy thing or a girl thing.

And it's something else I'm pondering. People tell me a lot of stuff. I don't think I've ever used those facts to attack the speaker. But then, that's not how my brain works.

/babble off

elionwyr: (dance)
So Bones decided to go back into the world of theatre this spring! (It had been about 9 years since his last show.) He tried out for "Annie Get Your Gun" at the Kalamazoo Civic Theatre, and scored the part of Charlie Davenport. :) Great people, great theatre, and I'm so wicked proud of him. It's been a huge time and energy commitment, and so worth it.

annie 2 annie 1
annie 3 annie 4

In the group pic, I'm waaaaay on the right hand side of the pic.  Bones asked if I'd like to be on the crew, and I said, "OH YES PLEASE!!" So I've been learning how to run a follow spot.  Fun!


Apr. 7th, 2014 04:06 pm
elionwyr: (bunny)

Yesterday three years ago, I drove 6-1/2 hours to Carterhaugh...er, Portage...to go on a first date that changed my life.

It was a gamble on so many levels.  We'd never spent time alone before that date.  I know I personally half-expected it to end up as another "oh you're great but I'm not the one" moment.

I've never been so glad to be wrong.  :)

The song that still sums up the time leading up to that moment:

"Epicentre" - VNV Nation

I asked myself was I content
With the world that I once cherished
Did it bring me to this darkened place
To contemplate my perfect future?
I will not stand nor utter words against this tide of hate
Losing sight of what and who I was again

I'm so sorry if these seething words I say
Impress on you that I've become anathema of my soul

I can't say that you're losing me
I always tried to keep myself tied to this world
But I know where this is leading
Please no tears, no sympathy

I can't say that you're losing me
But I must be that which I am
Though I know where this could take me
No tears, no sympathy

Gracefully, respectfully
Facing conflict deep inside myself
But here confined losing control
Of what I could not change

Gracefully, respectfully
I ask you please don't worry, not for me
Don't turn your back
Don't turn away

I can't say that you're losing me
I always tried to keep myself tied to this world
But I know where this is leading
Please no tears, no sympathy

I can't say that you're losing me
But I must be that which I am
Though I know where this could take me
No tears, no sympathy

No tears for me, no sympathy
No tears for me, no sympathy

elionwyr: (batgirl)

At my first haunt, Grisly Gothic Gables, sometimes we needed to have wall panels attached to the floor with concrete screws.  One of our crew members, “Donk,” usually did this for us, so we called it ‘donking the wall.’

This past year – and many years since Grisly – while building the Chamber of Horrors, I found myself checking walls and telling Bones, “No no, we have to Donk this panel, too.”


“Well, let me tell you about someone…”

donk 3

Donk is the fellow sorta in the middle of the photo, lounging in front of the fireplace.  This is a crew shot from Grisly, and in many ways I think it describes Donk.  He’s in the middle, but on the edge. He’s almost easy to miss….but only because you’re not there in person.

Donk was a member of our core group, our “Skeleton Crew.”  He was incredibly reliable – I can’t think offhand of him ever missing a performance – and while he refused to take on any sort of management title, he wore a radio for me because he was unofficial security. I knew that if he was in the haunt, my nearby female cast members were safe from any possible mischief or accidents.

When I think of Donk, I always think of his laughter first, his quiet determination to keep people safe second, and his mugging for the camera third.  Although he was generally camera shy in his day to day life, he had so much love for his characters and his special effect contacts that I honestly never realized he was known for avoiding photographs.

donk 4

And – as is so common – I didn’t know much about Donk outside the haunt.  I knew he was Wiccan – we discussed it on Facebook a few times – and I knew bits and pieces of his life, but I’m realizing now how little that actually was.  For example:  he wasn’t Dave to me, he was Donk.  He was gloriously DONK.  He loved to bellow “DAH-OOOOOONK!” – I can still hear the sound echoing down Philadelphia streets – and then laugh.  But it was only recently that I met the person that gifted him with that nickname.  It’s a quiet little reminder that, so often, we can love someone and consider them family, and never know every story that makes up that person’s life.

Last month, a stranger responded to a photo I’d posted and tagged Donk in, saying he had passed away.  A large part of me still can’t believe it.  I’ve been wanting to write a memorial since, but it’s an impossible thing to really believe the news.  I’ve found myself reading through old emails…like you do…and found this, which had been a response to my talking to him about my struggle with depression:

“…been there ,but i realized ,that’s when you need to embrace your friends (real friends ) not to shy away cause that’s when the loneliness causes you to do things ..out of character . besides your too sweet and hot to get depressed…”

I remember laughing and feeling wrapped in his affection and understanding.  I read that now and wish I’d had the chance to return that love.

donk 2


I don’t generally believe in angels.  I make an exception in Dave’s case.  Most of us never know how much we affect other people’s lives and stories.  Donk’s influence went so much further than he ever knew, and he’s one of those people that just brought joy to others’ lives.  I hope he knew, on some level, how much of a positive he was to the world around him, and I find myself believing wholeheartedly that not only does his joy continue, but that he’s protecting and loving us from wherever he is now.


elionwyr: (Default)

“I think it would be nice to totally redo the Christmas tree,” my husband mentioned as we drove back from one of his family’s many holiday gatherings. “I’d like it to have ornaments that are new, and that are just about us.@

It was sweet.

And I kinda wanted to scream.

Since the crumbling of my first marriage, and the lack of space for a full sized tree in my varied living situations, I’d been buying ornaments for my FutureTree. Some women have a hope chest. Some women dream of the names of their children-to-come. Me? I had two bins of autumnal décor that I was hoping very much to finally open and share with Dustin, my soul mate, the love of my life…and he had just voiced a desire for something that had nothing to do with my FutureTree dream.

So I did what any rational adult would do in this situation.

…I waited for him to go to work, and I set up his gloriously huge Christmas tree all by myself.

The job of tree set-up has generally fallen to me for most of my adult life, but I’d forgotten how heavy a non-tabletop-tree can be. I ended up pushing its storage bin up the basement stairs with one hand while clinging to the railing with the other to prevent both me and the bin from falling backwards, sorted the branches by their colour stickers, and …realized I had no idea how to get the lights on the trunk of the tree to light up.

After an hour of fighting with lights, I chose to just light the layers of branches. One of our household cats leapt into the middle of the tree to supervise from within as I returned to the basement to retrieve my FutureTree ornaments.

People talk about their holiday traditions – visits with family, singing carols to strangers – but this solitary act of decorating a tree? This is my tradition. Invariably, the other people in my life don’t have time, don’t want to be bothered, and so, generally speaking, I’d find myself alone in a room, setting up a not-quite-adult tree and adorning it with bits of my childhood. Wooden ornaments my mother painted 40 years ago, left behind in the divorce, and that my father tried to throw away…skeletons and bats, gifts from friends…a cornhusk doll given to me when my first poem was published…they all made their memory-filled ways to the branches of my small tree, to be taken down..oh, eventually. “If I’m putting it up? I get to decide when it comes down,” I announced one year when questioned about why there was still a Christmas tree in the living room in March.

I looked at FutureTreeNoMore, at the glorious size of it.

I pulled out the first box of ornaments. The sales tag on it was from 2007. The next one read 2008, and so on. Boxes of grandiose hooks I’d almost forgotten buying, bearing glass beads and composed of silver swoops of wire, connected the black and orange spheres to the tree’s branches.

And I cried.

I thought about the frantically lonely child in her room, mourning her parents’ divorce and clinging to the past by putting those wooden ornaments on a tiny trash picked tree that she’d set up in her bedroom. I thought about the years when I didn’t bother with a tree at all because I was renting a room in a friend’s house and isn’t Christmas about people more than it is about a fake bit of woodland, anyway?

I thought about my coworkers back in Pittsburgh and how we had successfully orchestrated putting up a non-sanctioned Christmas tree outside our office last year, about how much joy there had been in that bit of ninja decorating.

I looked at FutureTreeNoLonger, and all of these tiny glass promises I’d been making to myself for so many years.

I sniffled and hung another glass piece of candy corn on the tree. Looked at the clock. Realized I was out of time.

By the time Dustin walked through the door, all of the boxes and bins had been put away. I took him by the hand and guided him into the living room, ready to apologize for what I’d done.

A smile lit up his face. “I had no idea you could even lift that thing up the stairs! It’s lovely! I love it.”

“You really don’t mind?”

“Honey! No! I wanted to do it, I just…it’s a lot of work. How long did that take you? It usually takes me most of the day.”

I let that thought sink in, the realization that he was saying his tradition was also to do this alone.

“95% of the things you see have never been used before,” I told him. “It’s almost like buying new...”

“Perfect! That’s perfect. Thank you.”

I hugged him again…and tried to be gracious when he ducked under the tree and figured out how to get the trunk lights to work in less than thirty seconds.

As we’ve been moving through our first December together as a married couple, I’ve been thinking a lot about how I don’t have a lot of happy holiday memories, or examples of, “This is how my family celebrated the season.” In 2013, I had some powerful ‘a-HA!’ moments of understanding more of the ways my fractured childhood created my fractured adult self, and how much I need to unlearn old coping skills because they don’t help me anymore. I spent so many holidays feeling alone, unconnected to the people around me, setting up private Christmas trees, wishing I knew how to do it better.

I think I’m finally figuring out how to do that. And it definitely means sharing the tree duties next year.

Happy holidays, y’all.

elionwyr: (lurk)

"I have a kitten for you!  Weren't you looking for a black cat..?"

Truth was, I had been, but had just been bamboozled by a thoroughly evil kitten (who soon earned the name Hades) into bringing her home from a pet store (and I think she's still the only pet I purchased rather than adopt).  So the answer should have been no, I don't need another kitten.

"But I'm saving this one for you!"

Well.  Poop.  Now I felt obligated.  So I agreed to adopt this little fellow, sight unseen, and my fellow museum employee brought him to work for me, with the warning, "He, um, needs a bath. He won't leave his litterbox."

Turns out this little guy, maybe 7 weeks old, was feral and skittish and terrified of the world.  He literally cried for 3 days straight whilst hiding under my claw-footed tub.  Based solely on that desire to hide, I named him Lurk.

lurk 1

Read more... )
elionwyr: (Default)

Soooooooooo... how's it going down on earth, Dusti? You know, in time and space? Where thoughts become things, all things are possible, and dreams come true?! Are you totally kicking butt?

Oh, I see...



Ya don't say...

Dusti, I want to let you in on a little secret... E V E R Y O N E has issues... everyone. Even those who don't seem like it. Because without issues, NOTHING WOULD BE WORTHWHILE.

Think about that.

So glad we had this little talk.

The Universe

Thoughts become things... choose the good ones! ®
© www.tut.com

You ARE kicking butt, Dusti. You should see my car... I've got those "My child..." stickers plastered all over it.


Sep. 25th, 2013 02:06 pm
elionwyr: (Default)

So last Saturday, we decided to go to Hell, Michigan for Hellfest!

Hell, Michigan is one if the tiniest towns I’ve ever seen. Bones took me there last year on a surprise detour, and I love it muchly, even though the whole town consists of two stores, a tiny chapel, and a miniature golf course.

Hellfest is primarily a hearse event. I used to own a hearse, Bartok. He was my daily ride for about 5 years, and oh how I loved him. He’s still my dream car, and I can’t actually describe adequately how very much I want another hearse.

So I had penciled Hellfest in our calendar, and was really surprised when Bones said, “Sure, let’s go!” We monster mudded in the morning, ran back to the house to clean up and grab the kidlet, and drove the two hours to Hell.


Read more... )
elionwyr: (bunny)

I think it’s safe to say that we all pretty much get bullying = bad.

What we don’t get is what to do about it.

Bullying is one of those topics that is, unfortunately, near to my heart.  I dealt with it as a child and, unfortunately, I've dealt with it as an adult..especially over the past few years.  Many of you have seen the effect of that here in my Livejournal, which used to be a lot more public until the bullying began and folks in category B below (also called 'sycophants') started frequenting my blog.

That’s a sobering graphic.  It shows, very matter-of-factly, that it’s not just the act of bullying that’s the problem…it’s how we react to the bully/the bullying that contributes to the situation.  In my experience as being both a child and as an adult that’s been bullied, there are way too many people in categories B, C, D, E, and F.  The pain of being bullied often has more to do with those categories than the one bully ringleader.

So we’re told to ignore the bully and the situation will stop, and those of us that have tried that know it doesn’t work.  A good bully has all those other sycophants participating, consciously or not, in the hurt, and the more you hurt? The more they enjoy what they're doing.

What does help?  Being willing to say, “That’s not ok," and standing up to bad behavior.

And that’s a large part of what the Don’t be a Monster campaign is all about.

This campaign, using the slogan, “monsters belong in haunted houses,” is working on bringing free 30-minute anti-bullying presentations to varied schools across the country.  Some of the haunters involved in this are people I’m proud to say I know and have worked with, and I’m wicked proud of them for this project.

You can find this campaign on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/pages/Dont-Be-A-Monster, or online at http://www.dontbeamonster.org/.  Drop them a note if you want to help them succeed, or if you’d like more information.


elionwyr: (Default)

"It may seem as if others can add to, or take from, what you have and who you are, Dusti, yet at the end of every day, what you have and who you are is entirely a function of your thoughts, beliefs, and expectations.

The Universe"

elionwyr: (barefoot)

..is September 10th, and I missed it.  Which is aggravating because it's something I think is pretty dang important to talk about.  So..I'm sliding in just a bit late to do that.

First off?  Go visit http://www.iasp.info/wspd/.  Great information there.

And really, I'm going to reshare what I wrote last year, because after looking it over, it still says everything I have to say on the subject.  Except this... If you are struggling, if you've hit your fill line, if you have your out plan and you're ready to implement it, please talk to someone.  It doesn't have to be a therapist, or a crisis line.  Find someone you trust, and talk to them.  I owe eternal gratitude to [livejournal.com profile] ysobelle because she was the one that took my call and kept me talking, and at the time?  She didn't know she was saving my life.

Random acts of kindness and love, y'all.  You may never know how much it really truly means.

This wasn't much on my radar today, until I saw a tweet from The Bloggess about Wil Wheaton posting about depression after she posted about depression/suicide, and so - la, here's my post on the subject.

So I struggle with depression. I'm pretty open about it, both in my virtual and physical lives. And sometimes it's over my family, and sometimes it's because of my anxiety - I apparently suffer from anxious depression, which is ever such lovely news - and sometimes I am depressed for no reason I can actually map out to anyone. Sometimes it's the startled realization that my body is exhibiting signs of depression or anxiety all by its lonesome and I wasn't catching on fast enough because I was too caught up in the noise in my head and life to notice.

A few times in my life, I have found myself hitting my mental/emotional fill line. And the only logical reaction is to contemplate suicide.

People say that's a selfish thought. I disagree - quite strongly, and with many colourful NSFW words - because what I hear in that sentiment is 'you're thinking about suicide and that will seriously screw up my life'..which may be true. But imagine you're back in school and you're running that fucking mile for gym class and really, you hit a point where this seems like the stupidest thing ever, you don't care about the clock or the task or the judgmental looks from the jocks..you start walking, and if you could, you'd just sit down and stop because you really really really don't give a damn about anything except not running anymore.

You've hit that fill line. You are DONE.

And that's pretty much what it's been like for me at those times.

What gets me through it? One person. It's always been pretty much one person. One person that answered the phone and gave me the gift of hours of talking. One person that wrapped his arms around me and quietly held me through the night. One person that wrote something on Facebook that hit me just right at just the right time.

None of them knew they were saving my life.

And so as this day of awareness ends, I think that's the message I really want to express..that you can save someone's life completely by accident. Just by caring.

Never underestimate the power of your words, the power of your random acts of kindness.

Jenny asked people to share what gets us through the dark days. Often, it's been my cat. Lurk deserves to be safe and fed, and the one time he saw Death, it freaked him the hell out...he howled for a week after Hades passed away. I won't do that to him.

She also asked that we share what music helps us. When I'm dealing with family crap, most of Poe's "Haunted" album does the trick (even if I do cry through parts of the songs). When I feel shaky, VNV Nation is my musical drug of choice..."Fearless" is a really good one, as is "Epicentre."

I'll leave you with "Fearless" - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pi_bAtUBtTk - and the reminder that if you struggle with suicidal thoughts, or anxiety, or depression...you dazzling creature, you are not alone.

And it does get better.

And yeah, I thought that was bullpoop, too.
..It wasn't.

elionwyr: (Default)

Bones and I took a break from other projects to attend a party at the home of one of his gaming buddies. The main event? A pizza grilling contest!

Read more... )

elionwyr: (surprised)
I'm watching Ally McBeal on Netflix, because I was hoping to rewatch the RDJ episodes - alas, they only go up to season 3.

I'd forgotten how clever and funny the writing was, and how many big names guest starred on it.

Just got to an episode in season 3 called "Pursuit of Loneliness" and I am astounded by how they handled the topic of bisexuality.  Previous to this, the topic has been touched on as a 'tee hee maybe Ally and Ling are bi..NAAAAAAAAAAAAAH they're just curious, they really like MEN!'   In this episode, though, a man Ally is considering dating tells her that he's bisexual, and it freaks her the heck out.

I can't find any free video of the episode, but here's the dialogue:

Ally: "The truth is, I don't actually date, not for the fun of it. I more like audition potential husbands and if I don't see any potential, I don't waste my time."

Hammond: "And you see no potential in me because I'm bisexual."

Ally says that she supposes she associates a lifestyle of promiscuity with bisexuality. "I suppose I'm insecure that a bisexual man has sexual needs that I can't fulfill. I suppose I like to think of my husband taking my son to a ball game and not having to worry about whether daddy is checking out the pitcher's glutes. I suppose I'm nervous about my kids being teased because of their father's sexual…….I suppose I'm worried about diseases. I suppose in the end, I'm far more homophobic than I ever imagined."

Hammond:  "When any person gets married, he or she pledges fidelity. For you to assume a bisexual person is less able to be monogamous, that is a prejudice. As for taking my son to a ball game, well, if your straight husband took your daughter to a women's basketball game, and you were concerned about daddy checking out the point guard's glutes, you'd have issues to work out with your husband, straight or not. As for your fears of your kids being teased, that's cowardice. Your fears of disease, ignorance, bias, take your pick. As for your all-too-comfortable resignation to being homophobic, without the will to root out the why or the compulsion to address it, that's as sad as it is inexcusable."

I nearly cheered, y'all.

In the end, Ally realizes she can't get past her prejudice, despite her own kissing of two other female characters on the show.

I wish I could find this clip. And then I wish I could share the heck out of it.
elionwyr: (bang)

It's been nearly 4-1/2 years since I started the process of recovering from having a narcissist at the center of my life.  It's as difficult a process as dealing with any sort of abuse, and just as insidious, because people inherently don't want to believe how bad it is for the victim. We as people are an odd mix of beliefs.  We love gossip, and we are often distrusting, but we have a hard time believing someone's truly bad behavior.

It's why gaslighting is so damn easy.  It's why abuse happens.  We see it, and it might even register, but we go into instant denial. It couldn't happen to me.  It can't be that bad.  S/He wouldn't do that.

And then it does.

I just saw this on Facebook, posted on a group page called "Surviving the Narcissist Relationship," and damn I wish I'd seen it in 2009.  I can't say for sure it would have made anything easier - I'm not sure anything would have - but it would have given me a clue stick about what I was going through.  For example, the first time someone told me I was suffering from PTSD, I thought there was no way..no WAY that could be true.

It was.

It's gotten better, and it gets better all the time - which is not to say the gaslighting, lies, and cyberstalking ahs stopped, I'm just better able to handle it - but emotional abuse is something that should never be taken lightly, and a narcissist is a master manipulator as well as abuser.

So.  I am sharing this here. I hope no one reading this needs the information.  But if you do...I hope it helps.
How to Help Someone Involved With a Narcissist

Read more... )
elionwyr: (tada)

"Bring me your weird people!"

Bones and I were walking around the Bristol ren faire this past Saturday. It was later in the day, and I was a little overstimulated as we passed by a booth filled with Celtic knotwork art and a vendor calling out requests like the above quote.

We paused, then turned around and took a peek at what she was selling.

Anne invited me to pick up a wooden stylus and do as she was doing: trace the path of the painted knotwork along the surface of one of the many disks around her booth.

"No, thank you. I just want to look..."

She picked up on my fried status, nodded, and pointed at one of the blue disks.  "Try that one."

I felt a little foolish, but I did as she said, focusing on tracing the labyrinth-like art around the edges of the plate. It was hard to think of much else, to even predict where the line would take me next.  I was focused on the knot and not on my head noise.  I've only walked one labyrinth, and I didn't quite grok what I should be getting out of the experience. This "relaxed awareness" worked a lot better for me, drawing me immediately into the moment and not the need to complete the task.

Anne talked to us about how different designs work for different kinds of minds.  People dealing with anxiety (such as myself) do better with simpler patterns - their brains don't need more stimulation.  Conversely, people with high-functioning autism respond better to complicated designs - something like the third design in the above image.

This Celtic Art Therapy is being used successfully by people with OCD, ADD, and ADHD as well as stroke victims and those dealing with other neurological conditions, and Anne's art is being used by varied clinicians and educators...indeed, she's always looking for more people that would like to use her art therapy in their classrooms or practices!

Of course, she's also making some beautiful art, and that can be enjoyed in more traditional formats such as t-shirts and art prints.  But if you'd like to experiment with her work yourself, you can visit https://celticart.webstorepowered.com/, click on a piece of art, and try it out for yourself on your monitor to see what design works best for you before you buy.

..And you'll want to buy.  Heaven knows a purchase is in my future!  I was truly amazed at how much calmer I felt after tracing a pattern for just a few minutes.

(for more info, visit https://www.facebook.com/CelticArt or, of course, http://www.celticarttherapy.com!)

elionwyr: (talking)

Scary thought, that.

But here's the thing:

If you are looking to be offended, or for a reason to be angry, and you approach Life with that challenge - "C'mon, Life, give me a REASON!" - wow, man, could you, like, back away from the internet, and the phone, and your house door, and any other possible way that might accidentally allow you to interact with the human race?  Because you are TIRING, you are RIDICULOUS, and you are WASTING. OUR. TIME.

I mean, really.  There are a <i>million</i> awesome things out there that make up this amazing world of ours.  If you can pass by all the ZOMG LOOKIT THAT and find reasons to be offended?  You're getting it absurdly wrong.

Here's a cluestick:  The world isn't out to get you.

People are not trying to mess with you.

If you say something and you get in response, "I don't understand," guess what?  9 out of 10 times?  That's all it means.  "I don't understand."  It doesn't mean you're being insulted or attacked or disparaged.  Don't wanna talk about it?  That's ok.  That's incredibly ok.  Say so, and that's the end of it.  No reason to fight.

I sometimes think that the reason we aren't getting very far in our pushes for equality and understanding is that too many people are walking around waiting to be offended.  And I'm so incredibly grateful that my life has brought me people that are willing to <i>talk</i>.

(And yeah, this mini rant is inspired by yet another discussion-gone-political that wandered into crazy-making territory wherein it's ok to say 'oh this situation isn't fair to me but being asked why, or how to make it better, is even worse.'  Silliness.  Just silliness.  We need to get over our precious egos.)


Jul. 30th, 2013 12:35 pm
elionwyr: (bunny)
It's difficult, living with a ghost.

Not in the ways you'd expect.  It's not about dishes breaking or lights flickering or the house creaking during the hours any respectable entity would realize are set aside for sleeping.

There is the excitement of knowing yes, this is real, you are not alone, she is here, and she is communicating with you in whatever way she can manage.  Love extends beyond fingertips and twisted, sweaty sheets.

That's the easiest part.

It gets harder when you introduce the outside world. No, you say to the invitations, thank you, but no.  It's too hard to leave when you're hoping for a glimpse of her. No, don't fix the broken things. She broke it, so it's holy. No, I can't explain. Or - worse - no, I can't stay, I have to go out, I'll be back, please don't cry.

And you don't want to be frustrated that she can't just tell you what she's thinking.  There are puzzles and games - words in the steam, whispers in your dreams.

She's doing her best.

Sometimes it's not enough.

You move through rooms lonely, not-lonely, knowing this is your choice, this is your life, this is what makes everything hurt just a little less.

In all of the ways Love makes an appearance, this wasn't one anyone could have warned you would happen.


Jul. 25th, 2013 08:04 pm
elionwyr: (bunny)
My grandmother, I'm told, had quite a green thumb.  I've always wished I had inherited that particular trait, but - alas - the only things I could really claim to be able to care for well have been shamrock plants (because those bastards are just too dang stubborn to kill).

I've always wanted a garden, and up until now I've only lived in a few placed that allowed me to play in the dirt, with varied degrees of success.  As a kid, I was pretty good with four o'clocks; as an adult, I've pretty much stuck to annuals, and have learned that gardening in poor neighborhoods is more properly called 'archaeology.'  It's gotten to the point where I'm shocked if I'm NOT finding broken glass, toys and the like buried in the garden-to-be.

Some of my early getting-to-know-you talks with Bones concerned plants and gardening.  He was frustrated by the death sentence his home seemed to be to anything he tried to grow.  So when I moved out here, friends loaded me down with plants from their gardens, and I chose things (like hostas) because I knew he liked them.  What I didn't know was how many plants he was bringing as well!

We had a lot of gardening to do.

I have no 'before' pics, but imagine if you will that the front of our house was full of scraggy shrubby goodness.  Bones tore all that out before I moved in.
with nothing to use for comparison, let's move forward.. )
elionwyr: (doit)
I didn't start driving until I was in my 30s.  Frankly, I missed out on the need to drive when I was a teenager because I could - and did - bike everywhere I needed to go, including work.

One of my earliest memories of a family outing is sitting in a kid's sit perched on the back of (I think) my mom's bike.  My brother rode in a similar seat on my father's bike, and we were gliding down a biking path that seemed narrow and woodsy and more than a little wild.

Jump forward quite a few years ahead to my ability to ride - and decorate - my own bicycle, which I did for the 4th of July for the three years we lived in the small town of Berkshire Heights, PA.

bike 1
baby nerds r us...I'm to the right
What kind of fool says sure I can ride 300 miles with no training? Well.... )
elionwyr: (bunny)
Many moons ago, I used to work for the Academy of Natural Science's Safari Overnight program.  It's changed a lot since my time...which makes me sound like grandma, doesn't it?  Gah!

So. I was one of the kitchen managers and, when that job was eliminated, I became an assistant manager and a sometimes-Teacher Naturalist.  What this means is that I spent years either scrambling to get snacks and coffee (ZOMG can Boy Scout dads drink coffee!), or being in assistant-charge of the needs of up to 450 people per night, starting from 6PM and going until about 9AM the next morning.  It was exhausting, it was awesome, it meant I got to work with people I'm still friends with well over a decade later, and I remain proud of being a part of that team.

But. I've never seen how other places handled their version of overnight programs.  Many zoos, museums, and aquariums have such programs, and they're a great experience for boy scouts, girl scouts, and family groups.

(No, it wasn't as cool as this..but it was pretty friggin' cool.)
(Yes, all the kids thought the T-rex and the mummies totally came to life at night.)
Read more... )

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