I’ve been talking about the commune for a long time now, and it’s starting to take shape. I have found like-minded people I want to be around kind of. I’ve even got a charter of sorts. As reported on a fellow commune member’s Facebook profile, it looks like this:
The problem is that the more I talk about it (meaning I have a lot of people who also want to escape to a land of mellow), the more people want to burst into the party. Some of these I gladly embrace [Do you have a still? yes or no – circle one] and some are not. The whole point of having a commune is hand-selecting companions which means, in my case, keeping out the drama.
I was in the midst of another Facebook thread about the recent slate of Skype marriage proposals I’ve been getting when the commune thread came up. Someone who I am personally rooting for but don’t want to live in community with invited herself to the commune. As long as there is climate control and luxurious bedding she is in.
If you are wondering why the pause was awkward, reread the charter above where I make it pretty clear that high maintenance results in automatic disqualification. I consider someone else putting temperature control restrictions on my commune to be a key indicator of high maintenance. Build your own damn commune. I’m not responsible for your climate control or bedding.
This is a pretend-now-but-god-how-much-fun-would-that-be-to-actually-pull-it-off-somewhere-with-a-garden-and-cool-people plan right now. But I am feeling protective of this sacred space-in-my-head.
On my commune, we are going to have Ed in a hammock out front acting as gatekeeper and monitoring intruders. That’s what we have for guys right now. It’s not that we’re lesbians. It’s just that we’ve hit our quota of bullshit. Next to Ed will be a stack of cookies. He prefers cake, but I make cookies and until we draft for a maker of cakes, he’ll have to do with cookies. His cookie stack will be rivaled in height only by the stack of books beside it. Ed is an avid reader.
We’ve got a bevy of freaking smart, intelligent, funny, snarky, stunning female humans, some of whom have an affinity for hammocks and edible comestibles. One of the few times I have tried them (comestibles), I felt the particular inclination to make a number of pictorial representations of what the alphabet should look like, drawn with my eyes closed. That was amusing. There will probably be more alphabet art at the commune. Obviously flip flops and yoga pants.
“This is a place of yurts, campfires, and hammocks,” I said by way of dissuading this wanna be commune member, “I don’t think you would be comfortable here, but you may certainly visit,” I offered. I meant all of that.
I don’t dislike her. I just don’t want to live with her, and I resent someone barging into my safespaceinmyhead. I was feeling all good about my commune, and now I am trying to figure out how to not hurt someone’s feelings. I have a theoretical non-drama-driven community to protect here, People! I am trying to be tactful.
When she argued the point, it probably wasn’t the best idea to tell her that I was basing her being high maintenance on her propensity toward hotel and restaurant snobbery, a point which she is currently arguing with me.
I’ve done some time in HR, and this would not be a good culture fit. I debated involving the witness of other friends who have reported this snobbery and then caught myself and thought, “I am acting like a seventh grader.” I don’t want to hurt her, rather I want to discourage her without her being rejected. How has this energy pierced the veil of my solidly positive commune mojo? I mean, Jesus, we picked up our cookie-eating gate-keeper this week! This is good stuff!
I guess it isn’t a good idea to broadcast something on Facebook that I’m not really quite so kidding about as I thought I was. The lesson might be that all good clubhouses need to be secret and sacred spaces protected. Or maybe Scorpio shouldn’t be the community manager. Or maybe Scorpio should be the community manager. I’ll ponder it in my hammock.
Father’s Day can be bittersweet for people who had shitty dads, who had no dads, who no longer have good dads. It can also be hard for single moms who carry the load of being both Mom and Dad. Here’s a little something for that group created by Marshall Davis Jones.
Circumstances can trigger volcanic disruptions in our lives.
We are embarking on journeys of creativity and then it hits: job loss, divorce, death of a loved one, or existential crisis. This creates a clusterfuck in Maslow’s hierarchy.
In this age of shamanistic positive thinking, it’s easy to feel inadequate when the load feels heavy and visions of self-actualization are abrogated by fears about how to save the food in the freezer in the event that the electricity gets shut off.
How do the resilient recover? How do they keep from slitting their wrists when the path to rebuild feels impossibly un-doable? Well, lucky for you, I have a blog and an opinion, so let me help you navigate this path.
1) Excise toxicity. Put a moratorium on everything and everyone who is an energetic black hole. Start looking for people who have breathed through the volcanic ash and are living bigger than you are comfortable living. Cling to them. Lurk in their online communities. Grok them. Let them know they are an encouragement to you.
2) Breathe. and exhale fully every single time as often as you can. Read this great blog from Jen Violi on breathing.
3) Survive. Do what you have to do in order to survive each day. Stand in line to get food stamps and health insurance for your kids and cry when you get back to the car. If you compromise, forgive yourself and more forward. Do the next right thing. This is training camp, and it can be really hard. Just keep swimming – it won’t be forever.
4) Get clear. While you are heading into your cocoon, determine to spend your time in there getting clear on what you really want – even if it seems impossible. Write it down. Try it on. Feel what it will feel to be in your new ‘space.’
5) Ask for help. We all need it. Let yourself be that person and welcome the lesson of vulnerability and need.
5) Shift your story. You aren’t a victim tossed by the winds. You are a proactive agent of growth and you didn’t expect such a strong nudge into the next chapter. That’s okay. Let the old story have its place and then let it go. Begin to write a new one.
6) Choose you. Commit to what you want. Know that it may very well feel like swinging from one jungle vine to the next without the next showing up quite yet. Choose you anyway.
I’d like to go on record as saying I was adopted.
My mom got mad at me today because I wouldn’t take her Mom jeans with the elastic waistband. I quit.
“Why not?” she asks condescendingly.
“Because I won’t wear them,” I fire back.
“Why not?” she asks with judgment and disappointment.
(Somebody remind me how I got here…)
“Oh, look, it’s time to go!” And my yoga pants and I came home.
If the lawnmower had just started I wouldn’t be having this Paula Cole moment.
The locust tree took over my yard and threw up shoots. I broke one mower trying to bludgeon them to death. Friend Richard came and ground the stump into submission so now I can mow. This is great timing because the grass is about eight inches long and it’s spring. It’s also alternating hot and jungle rain, so it’s growing about three addition inches per day.
Another dear friend dropped off a mower, but I’m a girl goddammit and I can’t start the fucker. My sons held the handle together while I tried to pull it. After about three minutes and some of the most effective profanity heard in parenting, Matt finally laughed at me and said, “You really do need a guy.” (Turns out you have to push a little button to get it started.)
The kitchen sink leaks to the point that I have three buckets dispersed beneath it, scattered amidst the forest of mushrooms. I turn on the cold water only when I need it which means we get drinking water from the bathtub spout. The hot water scalds anyone who pushes it past the middle of the sink – or all the time now since the cold water is turned off generally. If I don’t empty the bucket daily, it oozes over onto the cupboard. Pretty sure I could push the pointy end of a toothbrush through the bottom of the cupboard – it’s so squishy.
To be accurate, it’s not three buckets. My plumbing solution is one small bucket, one small plastic bowl, and a towel because just yesterday when I was doing dishes I realized the water was leaking out of the cupboard door. “Well, that’s not good,” I said to myself. “I wonder what new excitement is happening underneath there?” I asked myself. “Oh, how interesting,” I said as I opened the door to see that not only are both lines dripping but the connector between the right and left sides of the sink just plain old detached. And water was basically just overflowing straight into the bucket. If I wash dishes quickly and hold the pipe up with my right foot, then it works pretty well.
My life is like camping but with a comfortable bed, flush toilets, wifi, and some really high crab grass.
Ants in the bathroom. And I’m pretty sure that the kids’ friends at school take off their smelly socks after recess and give them to my children who wake up in the middle of the night and litter them about the house. Because NO ONE can possibly have THIS MANY smelly socks in their house with three children who are only here every other week. It’s simple math.
On the plus side the rats seem to be finished shitting all over my garage and eating my TVP. I feel fairly confident about the TVP part because there is none left to eat. Bastards.
Drove the boys to school today. We were a little early but I was still stressed out because of 1) dirty socks and 2) Matt asked me to get him milk. “You are going to get eaten in the wild,” I told him by way of encouragement. “Get your own damn milk.” As I drove, I was considering what a stellar mother I am in all ways. A bus ahead of us decided it wanted to change lanes at a really shitty spot, slowing down traffic for a block and a half behind it, so even though I had time, it made me cranky.
Once the bus moved over, I saw why it was changing lanes. Just in front of it on the street was a woman stuffing a bunch of dirty clothes into a laundry basket. She’d been crossing the street – a really busy street just off of I-5 – with an overflowing green plastic laundry basket of clothes. Maybe her clothes were clean, maybe dirty. Maybe it was all she had – maybe she was going to the Laundromat. Maybe going home from one. But I felt like that lady. And it scared me and I wanted to cry.
I resented that I had to take my kids to school and couldn’t turn around to pick her up and drive her somewhere. Maybe we could both inhabit one body and share resources. At least I have a car and a washer.
When you are poor, there just isn’t enough.
I need to finish school and get a job. I don’t like it here right now. Someone come mow my damn lawn.
I get caught between the energy healing, Law of Attraction way of thinking and my own emotions. I feel vague guilt about not being able to feel my way into prosperity or happiness. I get it – it makes sense. I’ve watched “What the Bleep Do We Know?” I’ve even lent it out.
Where the rubber meets the road, though, I just cry a lot. About dolphins in captivity and pictures of butterfly eggs.
— TED Talks (@TEDTalks) April 9, 2014
The world is too big and beautiful and loud and it feels like this because I have been shut down for so long that the stimulation overwhelms me. The challenge to participate in it alternately creates a siren call toward my power and a compulsion to binge watch Netflix. I am afraid of my power. Still. I am afraid that am being asked to be bigger than I can stretch to accommodate. I am afraid I might miss ‘the thing’ that I feel like all of this wrenching reidentificaiton is preparing me to integrate with.
My Paid for Friend says this is a sign that my emotional reserves are growing. I have the capacity to feel and it is safe to do so.
If our intuitive intake machine is supposed to look like a bowling ball with a couple of holes on the top to filter information through, my hard exterior is non-existent and I am left with the string ball inside and nothing to protect it from overwhelming overload of sensory input. I retreat to sleep to provide the buffer I need between the world and my overactive brain.
Whether I’ve turned into a blazing introvert or whether I’ve just come to terms with the idea that I’ve always been one, the idea of people exhausts me. Telling me I think too much and am too much in my head is 1) true and 2) dismissive. Come be in my head with me and help me make sense of the landscape.
It is miraculous. My intuitive soul knows the rational string ball of my mind is preoccupied with the room of mirrors and it continually leads me into the version of me I am careening toward. And someday they will integrate, says My Paid For Friend – the powerful intuition and the blazing intellect.
She says I am perfectly at the wrenching part of the journey where I utterly destroy the container that got me here and reconstruct an identity out of meaning and symbol, feelings and compassion. If the journey to mental health and integrated living is a bell curve, I am on the tail end of the fire swamp and getting ready to start living through the Intuition and not quite so much sabotage. The Mind that has held the reigns doesn’t yet trust the Intuition and so the battle in all the areas one expects: love, creativity, life management.
It’s fucking messy. And I cry a lot.