Anger is an energy…

31 01 2017

Weather: Dear gods, it’s been all over the bloody place,  maxing out at the 60s a couple weeks ago, and now we’re back to grey, dour skies and the occasional bit of snow. Makes for  a constant state of mushy brain.

Sorry for the lengthy absence. The current world situation , and particularly here in the States, has been a bit of a trash fire. 

The constant barrage of discomfiting news and the anger that comes with it can really put the dampers on your creativity, or just thought in general.

I finally started making myself go back to the studio, just so I could start venting some of that energy into art. I’m finishing up a pretty piece at the moment. Have a few darker, angrier pieces on deck.  It happens.

I find it hard to create in a happy little bubble when things are burning outside the walls. My emotions tend to bleed into whatever I’m working on, whether art or writing. I can sometimes look back at something I wrote a while ago and usually can pinpoint when there was a spike in emotion about things.

The title on this post should not be unfamiliar to my fellow PiL Fans. Johnny Lydon does turn a hell of a phrase.

And yes. I’ve been very angry lately. Angry at the lack of compassion and lack of simple comprehension that people are taking with each other and the consequences of their actions.

I’ve joked about punching Nazis. (I’m not really joking.) I’ve made valiant attempts to not reply scathingly to posts and comments by people who should know better. (And given myself chest pains and headaches as a result). I’ve agreed with those who are putting their money and action where their mouth is. (wishing I could do more myself). It’s a fucking frustrating place to be, stuck between just supporting things I feel to be right, and not being able to turn into Galadriel with the ring and just remove the source of my ire, for the betterment of mankind. Mostly because I feel that the ends, while ultimately satisfying, would not be justified by the means.

My path has turned back to my Trad Witch roots. Yes, you read that right. Sometimes, when you have visceral energy that builds to point of hurting yourself, you will find a productive means to re-direct it. Sometimes it helps just to aim it at something. Like screaming out at the open water, knowing it is not literally fixing things, but hoping, with a little tendril of black hearted wistfulness that it just might leave a mark on those that hurt you or others.

So instead of finding light and joy to bring to my work, I have Kali and the Morrigan and the Norn whispering in my ear, nudging things towards righteous anger and achieving balance through less gentle paths. Because balance will always be reached, eventually, and through painful means if it is resisted. The flow of things tends to the middle, not the ends.

Let’s be honest, things can only be pushed in one direction for so long, till even the most sycophantic followers are given pause and decide to dig their heels in. We have become, by large, a loud chorus for our own comforts and conveniences. But there are deeper, more primal things that we all share that will not be compromised. By anyone. And what is a mere inconvenience for one, is devastating to another. We have lost sight of that connection, of that imbalance. Selfishness and fear are awful bed-mates, and they will be the ruination of all things good. The internet, for all its foibles, has managed to connect us on a larger level. And that connection does not stop at borders or with cultural differences. We are, whether you like it or not, a global society. We do not exist in a vacuum and our actions, for good or bad, make ripples both small and large.

This is a very chaotic time. I’m trying my best to keep a firm grip on the idea that we will get through this, and better angels will prevail.

But I will admit that the deeper urge to lash out and shake people until their pettiness, cruelty and stupid myopic view of this beautiful world dissipates, is very strong. I don’t want to give into that urge, but history has proven that if you push people or belittle them with ignorance and spite for long enough, they will push back.
With more power than you are aware they have. Bullies are always surprised when their victim takes them out at the knees.

I’m betting on the angels, but the devil has his merits too right now. Pray for the kinder outcome. The other option will leave more scars.

10363384_10203218438015108_6430511761129452288_n

Advertisements




Half Century Birthday Postopalooza!

12 01 2017

Weather: Oh dear gods, it’s been icy and rainy and cold and weird for DAYS now!

Yup, it’s my birthday today. Fifty years old. My fingers actually creaked as I typed that. (I kid! Honestly I don’t feel remotely that age, so I suppose that’s a good thing.) 

Fifty years. I was born in 1967. It seems like so long ago and yet, not so much. What really puts weight on the years is that I remember events that current college students only read about in text books. I get that weary head shake thing that my parents used to do when I argued with them from books versus things they experienced first hand.

I get it. I really do. Not that the events were more or less awful or fantastic than the events that happen today. I don’t suffer from nostalgia in either direction.  But it’s the subtle difference of watching events unfold in front of you with all the context of being alive at the time, and reading think pieces by people who filter events through current lenses.

We tend to look backwards with a cursory eye, castigating earlier times with a sniffy condescension or raising them well above their deserved level of wonderful. Neither is right. But the babies born now will do the same to our current era, and the cycle continues.

The things that strike me now are less “old person shouts angrily at sky” and more “I’ve seen some shit, man. This is just the same shit with different set dressing.”

Maybe it’s just the shortening of our collective attention span or the voluminous stream of unexamined information that vomits all over us everyday.  I just see a lot of people being very focused on current events – VERY FOCUSED – until something else pushes it aside as the new important thing. I’m not immune, but I’m finding my tolerance for wading into a constant stream of anger and outrage does little to elevate my understanding of things, mostly because emotions can come at the expense of facts. Not always. Not every time. Just often enough that I’ve started just walking away.

Maybe it’s just the weariness that comes from years of trying to dig that old silver lining out of the big black fart cloud that people just keep adding to in lieu of helping you look for the shiny. It’s not blind optimism or false hope I’m trying to excavate, but a way to find a kernel of useful information that might help cut the cloud down to a manageable size. Sometimes there’re more options than just yelling at strangers or going along to get along. Most people think either of those options accomplish more than they actually do. Awareness is their purported goal, but it’s hard to be aware when four different people are yelling at you that their cause is the most important.

SO — this is turning into a rather sobering birthday post, huh?

Well, here’s something for happier thoughts. My goals for this year seem to keep circling back to a few specific things- firstly, I want to focus hard on getting back in shape. At least a shape other than round and squishy.  If I’m gonna last another half century, which I fully intend to, I’m gonna need to get this flesh suit into better shape.
Another thing I’m going to focus hard on is increasing my creative output. Last year there was a dearth of projects on my part, and the truth is I was in a weird distracted head space that comes from applied laziness and worry. There were other mitigating circumstances, but they would be excuses, and I’m kinda done with excuses.
I’m going to pick my battles this year. So I’m hoping people will not be offended if I sit out various stages of culture wars or trying to maintain a constant state of anger at every little thing that drifts across my timeline. Wasted a lot of time and energy I didn’t have to spare on that. There are plenty of people to fight other battles, so I’m not going to jump in on every single one of them.

One thing though -and this is something I wish more people would consider- A lot of people who you assume are ignoring important situations that are happening in this country, are in fact doing a lot of the warfare offline. Sometimes the most effective progress can be made where there are no eyes on you. Making phone calls to people. Showing up to talk to people. Sharing good info is always helpful, yes, but a thousand people unexpectedly making a phone call to an office will do more good than a thousand people signing an online petition.

If there is one thing that I’ve learned over the years, and it’s been a very harsh lesson to learn, has been to pause before saying or posting things. Verify that what you are sharing is actually true. Verify that what you are saying is necessary and not just noise. If 40 people have shared something, are you actually informing anyone or just mushing down the message in a deluge by sharing it as well? Ultimately intent matters across the board. Schadenfreude feels satisfying but is a hollow victory most times. I have no love for internet mobs, even if their cause seems righteous.

I’m going to try and make my next 50 years into something of a sharp campaign of being better. I want things to be better for everyone. I realize there are some people who are intent on working against their own best interests, and sometimes that is not something I can fix. I’m not interested in fighting people to change their minds if they are dead set against even listening. I’d rather try and set a good example, persuade people with good ideas, rather than bludgeon them into my way of thinking. I’m trying to be a better listener, and less of a talker. I am trying to be supportive ally and not a loud usurper. I have causes that I would defend to the ground, but I also am trying to let those who are better equipped or informed take the lead when it comes to discussion.

If this sounds like I’m defaulting to a passive state, you don’t know me very well. I’ve always found that sometimes working when eyes are not on you, gets more done. I might not get to claim any glory, headlines or trophies, but I get shit done when it needs getting done. I’ve always been a better shadow counsel than Queen. So maybe I’m not the loudest person in defense, but do not doubt my resolution or sincere investment in a cause.

So. Fifty years old seems to have stripped the thin veneer of placid courtesy off my personality. I learned a lot by watching Carrie Fisher. I’m no blunt instrument, but neither am I a coddler or enabler for bad behavior. I celebrate the endeavors of those who at least try to make the best of a shitty situation, but have no tolerance for those who would seek to better themselves on the backs of those less fortunate. I’ve got no patience for bullies or the histrionics of the over zealous, regardless of party, preference or fealty.

I know the next four years are going to be interesting (in the Chinese Curse interpretation of the word) but that in no way excuses anyone’s bad behavior. Mine included.

SO. Just to sum up my usual ramblings, I’m getting older, I’m less inclined to play nice if others insist on kicking the beehive and I’m striving to be the best person I can be, considering the circumstances. Hopefully that will be enough motivation and steel to get me through the rest of my life.

yourlife





NaNoWriMo Day #20 – Deep thoughts are creeping out again…

20 11 2016

Weather: Still cold- low 30s- but much less windy and the snow seems to have gone. Still, finally feels like November.

words33410mood6

Thanksgiving is on the near horizon, and Christmas is not long after. This year has been mostly a garbage fire. Not that my personal life has been awful, far from it. But it seems the world at large has been fracturing, with long simmering resentments bubbling up and taking form in surprising and chaotic ways. We’ve lost a lot of touchstone people that especially people my age (late 40s) were hit hard by- Bowie, Prince, Leonard Cohen, Alan Rickman, the list goes on and on. I know that a lot of this is to be expected- as we age, those we look up to or are inspired by, age accordingly. Some will leave us sooner than we are ready to let them go. Doesn’t make the hurt any less.

NaNo has been harder this year for me than last. Didn’t help that there was a contentious (she said, in vast understatement) election in the first week of writing, and between the weather, and potential jury duty, and imminent family gatherings, and the usual financial roller coaster, the word making was a little derailed.

But I’ve realized in the  past week that as the particular overwhelming signal to noise disruption happening on social media required me to step away a bit, I’m starting to get back in touch with life again. I hadn’t realized how much the politics and associated strong emotions had sucked me in. The slow drowning effect, I suppose. Didn’t realize I wasn’t breathing or underwater until my health, both mental and physical started taking a hit. So I extricated myself as best I could. The concerns I had before the election are still there, but the associated din of outrage and blame and finger-pointing and gloating are not washing over me like before. I’m trying to take the “Make Good Art” mantra to heart.

Do not take this as me giving up fighting for things I believe need fighting for, but understand that existing in a constant state of rage and fear does not make for clear thinking or good judgment. I’m no anarchist. I don’t believe that burning things to the ground is necessarily the way to fix what’s broken. Yes, it requires an unvarnished look at how we got here, but I also believe that things can be fixed by a complicated combination of compassion, realistic assessment and taking a long view. By finding allies with common goals. By not demonizing those who would help us, though they might not 100% agree with us. By not letting things slide because they are difficult. And most of all, by not enabling bad behavior or derailing conversations because it’s “not going to change” or “it’s been going on for a long time”.

I’ve said many times before, I am not a fan of nostalgia. I find it annoying and unrealistic and cherry-picking, because the past is the past for reason. Yes, there were good things, but there were also awful things and you don’t get to gloss over the bad because the good things make you wistful. Too easy and lazy by a long stretch. I’m more for grappling with the issues we have today, so we can entrench the advances we made and work on the new challenges so we can move forward. I mentioned to a friend today that part of our problem now is that we are just far enough away in time from things like the Depression,  WWII or even Cold War eras that the current generation has no real connection to that time. It’s stuff in history books or things our grandparents talk about. (In my case, parents). We look around and say things are horrific, and by some measure, they are. But we are still nowhere near the bottom of the barrel of the Dust Bowl, or rationing, or the Draft, or being wiped out by the flu. (1918. Look it up.) We need to deal with our current problems, but we also need to get a grip. Worse things have been lived through and worse things have been conquered. Which should be a MOTIVATION not a way to diminish our worries or challenges, mind you.

(I see too many people minimizing others pain by saying others have it worse. That’s cruel, reductive and not at all helpful. Be compassionate or be silent.)

All the same, I think our historical challenges can help us face our current challenges a little more clearly if we put them in perspective.

All of this musing leads to story compilation. Taking a long view of history and asking a lot of what if questions when turning that view toward the future is how ideas come to mind. Will those ideas fix real world problems? Who knows. Creativity is not limited to fictional or artistic outlets.  It’s something I think we’ve lost a bit over the past few years. We do a lot of re-sharing of others ideas, images and creative output, but I think we’ve diminished a little by not putting our own creative output out there as well. Happy accidents and half-baked ideas can lead to solutions. Maybe not in themselves, but by providing component pieces to foster discussion or to build upon by others with their own pieces to the puzzle. Collaboration has taken a big hit of late, whether due to fear of ridicule or fear of having one’s own ideas co-opted by someone else or losing one’s sole claim to glory, who knows?

Sorry for the woolgathering here, but these things have been weighing heavily on me lately and I’ve been too scattered to compile them into something coherent. I suppose I need to take my own advice and start suggesting ideas and putting my creative output into the stream and see what floats and what sinks. Failure isn’t fatal. It’s just an idea that didn’t work. Trying something new that builds on what didn’t work, or just making another attempt from a different launch pad is not a waste of time. That’s how most things result in a success. We talk way too much. We need to do more. Discussion is fine, but ONLY discussion results in little. Awareness is good, but awareness alone changes little. No one is asking you to fix EVERYTHING or even to solve anything on your own. Don’t let people make you think that all the challenges we face are a zero sum game, that by focusing on one problem, you are ignoring others.  You can’t spread yourself that thin. But you can contribute. You can lend a hand. Make your voice heard. Create memorable images. Help motivate others.  Just my 2 cents on all this craziness.

postive-change-quote-2





NaNo Day…OH YEAH! It’s done!

4 12 2015

Weather has been unseasonably warm. People are being unreasonably awful to each other. Woo. Season’s Greetings everyone!

So yeah. I finished NaNoWriMo with 4 days to spare. I haven’t blogged because the holiday and subsequent weekend kinda kicked my arse.

The news has been consistently awful, with the kind of rampant violence and equally rampant stupidity and tone deaf commentary that seems to accompany it like a whore of Babylon astride a slouchy beast. Needless to say, I’m staying the hell away from the holy (or UNholy) all of it.

I have opinions. Strong opinions. But they will neither ease anyone’s suffering nor change the minds of people who are determined to be misinformed and  resolute in that misinformation. So why vent my rather prodigious spleen online and just add to the cacophony of Howler Monkeys already supplying a constant stream of high pitched frothy hysteria?

This is what I hear when I read most commentary on things anymore:

wargarble

So no. Not gonna even insert one toe in this morass. (Mind you…I lean to a very Buddhist Left. Moderation and Equanimity, but compassion in all things. So you can probably guess where I sit on my Opinion Throne of Judginess. 😉 )

Back to NaNo. I’m still a good 5 or 6 chapters out of being done with the first draft. I already know how much fleshing out and hacking away is going to be occurring in the near future. But the skeleton’s been built and there is a good modicum of meat on the bone. But it ain’t even remotely pretty yet.

I’m trying to get back to the studio as I’ve been neglecting the art side of things since I was all in on writing the past month. Trying to get some holiday related pieces together and finish some overdue commissions.

With the weather being so ridiculously off and realizing that I’m approaching the one year anniversary of my brain injury, my mood and focus hasn’t been exactly where I need it to be. (For those new to my blog– this is the write up of what happened)

I’m trying not to mull over the consequences of my near miss, but I do get nervous when I get a headache. Understandable I guess.

Time to get over that hump and leave the medical trauma behind. Time for a new start. 🙂





Nano Day #17 Back to the Writing Mines

17 11 2015

Temps dropping. Winds picking up and we’re seeing the “s” word showing up in forecasts. Can’t really complain. It’s mid November and I’m still wheeling around in my hoodies.

Skipped a writing day yesterday to give my brain a rest. I was starting to wander, plotwise. I needed a day to get my head out of the bracken, so to speak.

Online news and online bad behavior brought out the worst of my moods and I made some rather pointed statements on my social media. I don’t regret it though. I hate conflict, but for once, I felt that I couldn’t stay quiet anymore. I don’t like bullies and I don’t like the ugliness that is starting to show up both online and off. It’s driven by fear and it brings out the worst in everyone. I’m a big believer in compassion. Which, contrary to popular belief, is not the same as gullibility or agreement. You can despise the actions of evil people, but still want to know why they do things. I can’t abide the wide brush being used as an excuse to lump groups of people together so that small minds can lash out with little thought.

Anyway. I threw a grenade out there and I can’t whine that some of the shrapnel hit me. Kind of expected, I guess.

Writing was better than expected today. I managed to squeeze another 2000+ words out. Story is back on track. Glad I took the day off. I’m still ahead of the curve for NaNo.
Total as of today?

words=30943&mood=3

Makes me happy that I’ve been able to keep going. I’m cramming in wordcount where I can. Hopefully I can keep enough of a gain to allow for Thanksgiving Day next week. (And the Jessica Jones marathon I’ve got planned for this weekend! 😉 )





Unexpected lesson from “Unplugging”

9 07 2013

Weather: Dear benevolent deities, we have achieved July Steambath weather. Upper 80s, Humid as hell. GAH!

So I took a week off from the interwebs. 

But I really didn’t.

Yeah, I checked my e-mail. Glanced briefly at Facebook. Glanced briefly at Twitter. The only real change in my habits for that week was I didn’t interact. Or respond. Made for a lot of tongue biting and twitchy fingers. But I got art done. And peace of mind came in the silence and lack of brain clutter.

The unexpected result from this, once I returned to social media interaction, was that I was suddenly, acutely aware of the incivility of people. Not that it was new, or even had increased in volume. The fact was, I had forced myself into re-sensitizing. I’d become numb to it to be honest, and I could see that pretty much everyone else was numb to it too. Oh sure, if things got particularly egregious, people reacted. But for the most part the reaction was the usual -“It’s the internet” Shrug. Advice not to feed the trolls. Let it pass. It’s not worth the fight. Let the bile and venom build, just throw a tarp over it. If we ignore it, it’ll go away.

While I understand this is the nature of a free and open internet, I kinda found myself really getting irritated more than usual.

So I made a decision.

I’m not allowing incivility in my life anymore.

Before I get a litany of “free speech” , “I have a right to express my opinion”, “I don’t believe in sugar coating…” BLAH BLAH BLAH — Re-read my sentence there.

I didn’t say YOU couldn’t be uncivil. Or rude. Or opinionated. Feel free! Knock yourself out.

I said I wasn’t allowing it in MY life.

Let me clarify.

I have opinions. Strong ones. Usually pretty fucking liberal ones. But I tend to keep them to myself for the most part. That’s been a conscious decision on my part. I’m sure people can infer where I stand on things by the nature of the pages I like on Facebook or the people I quote or the feeds I follow on Twitter. This isn’t me trying to camouflage my leanings. They are what they are. I just don’t feel the need to explain them or defend them to the internet at large. They’re my opinions. That’s it.

I know others have opinions. Strong opinions. Some that line up with mine. Some that don’t. Some that stand violently in opposition to mine. That’s also fine. My mum and I overlap on some things, but can get a little heated discussing others.

I tend to err on the side of you having a right to differ in opinion or view or fandom or anything. Frankly, and to be blunt: I really don’t care.

Even more blunt: I really don’t spend more than a half minute to read your rants or screeds. If I disagree, I just stop reading.

Here’s a harsh reality that no one wants to hear: I have zero obligation to hear your counterpoint to my beliefs. Just like you have zero obligation to hear mine. It’s a courtesy on both our parts to do so. I’m always willing to listen if your counterpoints are presented coherently, backed up with facts from good sources (not news pundits or “my friend/relative says they heard…) and delivered with the intent to inform not inflame.

Hell, I get annoyed by people I AGREE with when they constantly flog things with histrionics and flimsy at best facts underlying  their rants.

Also? I have little patience for conspiracy theories. I don’t place much credence in any of them, regardless of topic matter. I DO believe in healthy skepticism & not placing 100% trust in any institution or authority. But give me facts, numbers and not a series of links to websites with little of either.

So there’s my take on online posting  for the most part. Circling back to my point.

I’m tired of all the yelling. Nobody is listening anymore. We just keep shouting louder and louder, hoping volume will get us heard. We use shocking pictures to get people’s attention. (BTW– Showing me a picture of an abused animal or child will get you blocked immediately. I KNOW IT HAPPENS. I support a lot of aid groups to PREVENT it from happening or help after the fact. In fact, as one of my friends recently pointed out– WHO IS YOUR AUDIENCE WITH THAT? If you have someone on your FB page or Twitter feed who thinks that’s okay? You might want to reassess your friends. Otherwise YOU ARE PREACHING TO THE CHOIR AND MERELY UPSETTING YOUR FRIENDS!)

When I say I’m not tolerating the incivility anymore? Here’s my solution.

1: I’m going to maintain a level of positive and calm when I post online. (With a minor exception for squee, which is inevitably positive for the most part anyway) If something angers me, I will do my best to post only some way to take action on it, not just grouse, grumble or bitch about it. All that results in is a choir of “I’m pissed too” which doesn’t do anything to FIX it.

2: If you are on my feed and are constantly posting political, religious or personal rants? If they’re civil and presenting facts, fine. If they consist of “Everyone opposite me is an asshole” or “I dislike a thing and anyone who likes that thing is an idiot”? I’ll hide your post. Twice. Third time, I’m dropping you. I don’t care if we’ve been friends for years or family. NOTE: I AM NOT TELLING YOU WHAT TO POST OR HOW TO POST IT, I’m just saying I don’t want that shit on my timeline anymore. You can continue to vent your spleen or share your views. I just won’t be part of your audience. I’m fairly certain you won’t notice my absence.

3.: I have a zero tolerance position on implied abuse of children/animals, bigotry, homophobia, religion bashing, or misogyny. ZERO. I give two shits if you think that’s overly PC or that I lack a sense of humor. If you find any of those things funny? You’re probably right about my sense of humor.  Again, I’m not telling you to stop posting those things. Carry on. I just won’t be around to “enjoy” them.

4:  I’M NOT ASKING ANYONE ELSE TO JOIN ME IN THIS. Free world and free will, all that stuff. As a human being living in this increasingly awful environment, I’m simply making the choice to live differently. More positive. More civil. And if I need to express dismay at something, I will do so when I am calm and do so reasonably.

And no, I don’t care what you think about this. I don’t care if you think it will make a difference. I don’t care if you’re offended by what I’ve said above.  I DO NOT CARE.

And don’t think that I’m not amused that I’m making this announcement in a blog post. Didn’t say I won’t have my contrary moments.

The reason why I’m using a blog post to share this? I just want people to be aware of why I may no longer be on their friends-list or following them anymore.

Ultimately, I just want to get my brain away from triggery things and negativity that I have zero control over fixing. Because, shock of all shocks, I’m a fixer. I’m far too empathetic for my own good, and I can only absorb so much of other people’s indiscriminate anger and venom before I have to walk away.

I have a lot of major life changes facing me right now, and to be blunt, one last time, I don’t have time to waste on internet drama anymore.  I’d rather enjoy things and make things and do what I can to get things to change for the better. Raise people up rather than tear them down. Spotlight people who do good rather than focus only on the bad.

So, only positive or productive interactions going forward. I’m sure the internet, and the world, will spin ever on without my having to know everything about EVERYTHING. If I can help someone I will. If I can stop something bad, I will do what I can. But I’m done talking this shit to death. Will my attempts here change things? Maybe. Maybe not. But you know what definitely WON’T change things? Shrugging and accepting that that’s just the way things are.

I promise my next blog post will be more substantial and contain actual art & writing content. 🙂





Life at the crossroads…

6 02 2009

Weather: High: 37 DEGREES I SAY!!! HUZZAH! and partly cloudy. Let zee big melt begin.

Today is an interesting day in that I’m feeling the double edged sword of seething resentment and crystal pure clarity. Positive and negative emotions so very carefully balanced on a sword blade. The sharp side, I might add, so you can see the balance is precarious.

Sometimes you reach a crossroads in your life and don’t even realize you were heading there until you arrive.

Several things have happened over the course of the past few weeks to make me realize that some heavy choices have been dumped at my feet.  Most of these fall under the “Time to make a decision on what’s your priority?”. The rest fall under the “Is it time to let this go?”.

Writing has taken over the forefront of my life and focus right now. With the exception of Brian, this is what is important to me. It’s not a social or group endeavor.  It is solitary by nature and necessity. And I’m finding that people who are not writers, do not seem to understand this.  If I say I didn’t get my cleaning done on a Saturday because I was writing, half the people I know are “Cool! Good on you!”
The rest act like I’m just slacking and why couldn’t I just do it another day?
Sigh. This isn’t a goddamn hobby, people.  It’s not like knitting or WOW or any other things you can just do when the time allows.  When something pops in the skull and demands to get written, you have to stop what you’re doing and write it down or you lose it.  And you don’t just schedule an hour to get some writing done. I’ve had days where I’ve sat at the laptop for 6 hours straight writing and not even realized the time had passed. Other days I can sit for an hour and be done. There’s no simply setting an hour aside in my daily schedule for it.

Another thing that has come like a fiery epiphany is that I’m no longer  allowing other people’s issues to become my priority. Sorry, if that seems harsh. I’m quite willing to help out and listen to problems, but I’m sorry, I have a metric tonne of stuff I’m trying to coordinate right now. (A major move, career change, start a family, get 4 novels finished) and they are my priority.

The one thing that is chapping my ass the hardest is people’s lack of understanding where my work is concerned.
At my office there is me and my boss. We comprise our IT department. We are responsible for 100+ brokers (At 2 separate locations) and their PCs and their Citrix connections. Add in the new software we’re trying to roll out and the training to go along with it and a shit ton of data entry related to some new brokers who have joined our company recently, and yes, I AM REALLY DAMN BUSY! (Yes I post online, but I have 2 monitors and my browser is on one and my data entry is on the other. Therefore when something it processing, I can type a few lines over here.)
NOW. I am in an OPEN CUBE. This means I have 2 walls and no door. People can just walk up to my desk and bug me. I also SHARE this cube with another woman. Who sits 5 feet away from me. This means I have ZERO PRIVACY when it comes to my phone or in person conversations. This is why I don’t like taking personal calls at work. My family is NOTORIOUS for this. Also, if you call my work line? I have Voice Mail. LEAVE IT. I have  a hotline for the IT department on my phone that requires my priority attention. So if I say I have to go, I HAVE TO GO. Don’t get huffy if I hang up on you after telling you I HAVE TO GO and you insist on babbling. My cell phone is on vibrate when I’m in the office. It’s a moot point because I get shit reception  in this building.

My lunch hour at work is precious to me. Usually this is when I get a lot of writing done. And catching up with e-mail and bills. I like to take advantage of the T3 we have here at work.

Now if all of this is coming across as me turning into a selfish bitch, all I can say is this: Yes, I am. And it’s about time.
I have put everything I have ever wanted to do on the back burner for the past 30 years of my life.  I’ve said no to things I really wanted to do, because friends or family wanted to do something else. I have put my problems aside to work on everyone elses. I let my writing languish while I wasted hours on things that held ZERO interest for me.  I’ve let other people natter on about their problems, passions and traumas while finding that noone ever had time to listent to mine. (Brian being the exception to this.) I’ve let other people’s disapproval or condescension make me hesitate in doing things that I would have loved to do and now there’s no second chance on some of those things.
Life is not a series of checkmarks in a book. If I do something for you, to help you? I do it because I want to help, not because I’m SUPPOSED to. And I don’t hold that in reserve to require reciprocity. I hope that if I’m in a bad situation, someone would offer to help. I don’t hold people in contempt if they don’t “return the favor”.  Help is only noble if it’s offered, not obligated.

So, this is my crossroads. I can either keep on being the go to person for everyone and setting my own goals and endeavors aside, or I can choose the harder path to do what I need to do, following my own path and hoping that the people who matter come along for the ride.

::Re-reads what I’ve written above::

I think it’s self-evident what path I’m going to choose.
To mis-quote VNV Nation: Enough is enough, No has meaning. This is my line in the sand.
I no longer will defend my decisions.
My life is no longer up for debate.
My choices, for good or bad, will be MY CHOICES.
And if you don’t like any of this, you may want to reconsider associating with me.
I am a good friend, I am a good person.  But I deserve the right to determine my life and what choices I make. As do you.
Three Days Grace says it nicely here:
Vodpod videos no longer available.

Anyway. Enough spleen bleeding from me today. I feel better now that’s out of my head.

Understand, I’m not aiming this at any person in particular. The list of people this applies to is lengthy and most of them will never read this. It’s just cathartic for me to say it. Doesn’t matter if any of them read it or even take it to heart.

ENOUGH.

Back to writing. 😉