on an uncharted atoll in the Pacific!

My daughter glides in the door and puts her arms around me. “How are you?” she asks, and she means it. Maybe no one is as kind, considerate, and loving as this child.

Sometimes I think she’s this way (in part) because of the effort I have put into being a good mother. Sometimes I think she’s this way (in part) because of all the mistakes I’ve made.

Sometimes I know I need to love her fierce while she’s here, and just be thankful.

My daughter shares her private life with me – so far, just me! – and this is truly incredible. I treasure her trust, and her disclosures, more than I can say.  I am humbled, honored, and glad. She’s going through Big Stuff right now and I know lots of her peers and classmates are going through The Shit, so. I am glad she thinks I’m safe.

So she asks me How Are You and the truth is, I am still tired and I’ve been tired a little while. I’ve had my ass handed to me by a fatigue that doesn’t make sense. Kidneys, maybe? I don’t know. I’m not anemic; today’s blood donation (re-)assured me on this. I can’t afford doctor care right now but if and when things settle down a bit I will make a move in that direction. For now: chin up. Drink water. Try: patience. Today I read a tweet online, an actress ran her first twelve miles and was ecstatic – I feel (a rare and) strangled kind of envy. I would love something different than what I have.

Actor Russell Johnson passed today; my fellow B-moviephile and author Scott wrote up a post and I had a nostalgic smile over last March’s Attack Of The Crab Monsters embroidery project. I haven’t sewn, not a lick, in about two weeks – which for me, is a Forever. If I had food in the pantry and gas in the car I could sew maybe, but even then I’d have to feel less tired.

Times like this I have to practice my patience. That kind of earth-shattering, centered bit of patience. Maybe things will get better; no matter what, I know they will Change.

“Two tears in a bucket, motherfuck it.”

You know for as many hours as I’ve logged with addicts, people who are either still on the stuff or getting off it or in some kind of maintenance program (either medically-overseen or… not, as a couple I talked with yesterday were), and the hundreds if not thousands of testimonies I’ve heard, I actually, daily, realize how little I know. I mean don’t get me wrong, I think I know a hell of a lot more than your average Joe who sees this sort of thing as a very Other People thing, and I think I know some elements more deeply than your average television show and documentary. As an alcoholic in Recovery I have an insider view in a thousand ways. But still. There are lots of drugs and lots of family upbringings and lots of of lifestyles I never lived. And this isn’t just about drugs or alcohol, this is about understanding the multitudes of people out there and sharing in a human way. It’s about me growing compassion and learning not to judge, but to listen. The world is an amazing education. Really. I think I am getting better about participating, and deeply loving people, and learning a lot from them.

Today for the second day in a row I got to talk with my dear friend S. whom I love to bits. LOVE TO BITS. She is tough as hell and she has been through so many kinds of hell. She has been through it and done it all, I remember early on knowing her, hearing her talk about getting water out of puddles in a trailer park in Moclips to load her needle. And a hundred other stories.

S. has rock-solid Recovery and because of where she’s been, she is in an extraordinary position to help so many people that most of society would write off – people in the throes of all kinds of legal, familial, mental, emotional, spiritual, and existential crises. She is one of the strongest and most beautiful women I know and I’m privileged to know her – like so many I’ve met in Recovery. She recently had her sobriety anniversary (or “birthday”) and I told her across the room, “I Love You”, because I really really do. Anyway anytime I talk to her I understand how little I know, and how small my world really is. I am expanding it and sometimes it blows my mind. Sometimes it wears me out.

Today after listening to some of the stuff I came home and got on the bike; Hutch followed me for a two-mile run. It helped a lot to work up a sweat, and imbued me with gratitude my body can do this for me.

***

Earlier though, I had an odd day.At noon I biked to an appointment with the dentist; when I got there they discovered the filling I was scheduled for, well I already had it. The dentist was pissed at his employees but he masked this as professionally as possible and apologized to me – took full responsibility. The more I see the guy the more I like him.

Then this afternoon I went off to a blood drive – I had an appointment. Like the last time, my iron was too low (not low for a woman – healthy – but too low to donate). They stabbed me again and the second time the number was lower. I couldn’t donate today. This really bothered me. So I will be eating rare steak, shrimp (maybe), molasses, green veggies and try again in a week, the 1st of August. Because sumbitch I’m used to being able to donate and it means a lot to me.

And it was all kinda awkward because I had shuffled the kids and borrowed a car etc. etc. just to do my various things today. I was a little out of sorts about the whole blood-#FAIL. But I have this Buddhist adage I use on days where things don’t go my way. I believe I mentioned it in my post title.

In other news I’ve been listening to some kick-ass ladies while I sew (today – six t-shirts for my little girl).

I wish I was glamorous & had the wardrobe to match, & Peggy Lee’s clear, effortless, and sexually-frank voice. & could sing in a band. I love singing. & I’ve always wanted to let my inner Floozy have some more breathing room. She’s a pretty funny lady.

Babies thrive on real meat!

“why is partying and having a good time bad?”

Friday links! Short and sweet.

I set up my next blood donation appointment online (here in Hoquiam/Aberdeen there’s one at Walmart on August 11th). All types are needed. Red Cross has been assclowny in a few ways in the past, but their online setup is pretty good.

“Amy Winehouse: Death and Addiction” by Kendra Sebelius (who is also @VoiceinRecovery on Twitter and writes on eating disorders; she does great work).

“Addiction is a serious issue, one that requires serious discussions. I feel people still have the tone of “well, she had a choice to stop.” Choice is such a hard word to even address in this whole thing. […] Rehab didn’t keep me sober, any more than it does for many people. […] This doesn’t mean a person is bad or a failure or unwilling to get better. It means it is hard to not only get sober, but to stay sober. I had to change my environment, ask for help, and find a new way of doing things. Rehab is just a starting point. You don’t go to rehab and automatically get better.”

Further on Winehouse: apparently a HuffPo article was needed because so many don’t understand alcohol withdrawal. This is kind of rattling to me.

OK, onto lighter matters: Special Report: Star Trek The Next Generation: A XXX Parody; even from giggly curiosity I can’t bring myself to watch something like this. But the review? GOLDEN.

Common rumors about lesbians I would like to dispel

The Just-So Stories complete text poster. Pretty fabulous. I’ve acquired this book and a few other Kipling tomes for my kids; they love them.

From M’s blog: “Mistakes”; a wonderful post about a child’s ever-broadening assessment of the world around him.

Make: Cucumber Lime Mint Agua Fresca at Simply Recipes

And – guess what? Babies thrive on real meat! From vintage-ads on Livejournal:

Babies thrive on real meat!

Babies, on behalf of parents everywhere, I’m really sorry if anyone offered this to you.

 

All the soarings of my mind begin in my blood.

Waiting

As I believe I have on occasion expressed before, I have a love/hate relationship with giving blood. It’s scary and upsetting and uncomfortable but only at a few specific junctions and not enough to be a deal-breaker. It feels good to help but I won’t lie, it feels even better to have Phoenix’s esteem. She was happy to accompany me today in her little white fleece leggings (a cozy and lovely gift from my mother) and big boots and sweater. An old man flirted with her in this condescending but affectionate way and she handled that just fine. She kissed me and told me “Good luck” and told me she was proud of me and I was “smart”.

The Big Stick (BOOBSCAPE 3000)

I was their last “customer” and when I finished (8 minutes) they pretty much told me to fuck off, get out of there. I know they have a lot of work to get done after the blood-cattle leave. I’ve always been treated so well by bloodworkers. An impressive record considering they have to work long hours in a cramped space, in an, ahem, charming town like Aberdeen.

Short entry today as I have a fair bit of laundry; Ralph and I are also finishing up a batch of matzoh ball soup. No one is sick but that doesn’t mean delicious preventative measures aren’t a good idea!

Cashier
(Small Stone #6*)

I don’t know why you’re especially cheerful today
But I’m not joining you.

Small stone project