Sometimes, life surprises us

Actually, fuck “sometimes.” Often?

Often is more accurate.

Surprises can be delightful, or they can be traumatic. Or anywhere in between. I’ve had my share of traumatic experiences in the last decade. The surprise there was how evil some “people” can be.

Those surprises made the current state of the world much less surprising. That’s unfortunate.

But in the last few days I’ve had some good surprises.

I let someone know I’d been uncomfortable with a situation that happened some time ago. I expected misdirection, redirection, blame, dismissiveness.

Instead, they also expressed discomfort and we agreed on how to move forward.

A surprise: a delightfully pleasant one.

And today, I had a non-human surprise. My partner and I had identified some probable poison ivy in the yard. Unfortunately, the “poison ivy” was climbing my fence – the only reason that my dog stays here! So it came to be choppin’ time.

I chopped chopped chopped. Lots of vines, not all looked like poison.

And then… I saw them.

Blackberries

Berries. I stopped and thought to myself, “does poison ivy flower? Does it have berries?” What about those thorn/spike things? Is that a feature of poison ivy?”

So I got my phone from the house and identified the plant: blackberries. Poison ivy does not have spikes/thorns. I stopped there, still not sure if the stuff flowers.

I stopped chopping. Yes, the fence still needs care – but I want to see what I can do about not killing off all the berries in order to protect the fence. On a cool morning.

And so… surprise. The thing I had earmarked as “bad” was… not only not bad, it was entirely misidentified. I had labeled one thing — something I wanted — as a bad thing.

And so… healing. It all comes back to healing.

EMDR. Reprocessing trauma and learning how to be me safely in the world. Learning. Growth. A reminder that things can turn out to be good.

So I ask… dear world: please continue to surprise me in the delightful way, because right now things are looking pretty fucking grim in “the world” (I mean the close-to-disUnited States) and I could really use some more … optimism.

And lastly but of course, not least… happy birthday mom. I miss you. Thank you for sending some berries to eat, along with that tiny dash of hope. ❤️

Being me, healing

It’s been an interesting time for me recently. Not interesting in the greater scheme of things: my life is still beautifully boring and I’d like it to stay that way forever. Interesting in my world.

I have done multiple assembly projects:

  • My new home theater system: back to modular pieces!
  • My yoga trapeze stand
  • An art storage cart
  • A multi-tier dish-drying rack
  • Catio!

Why is this so interesting in my world? I have a lot of challenges with assembling things. This causes a lot of emotional volatility for me, which of course, makes it even harder to finalize the projects successfully.

Even things I have done successfully many times: like connecting up home theaters.

But this last month or two, I’ve assembled all these things – and only the catio with help (it’s a powder-coated dog kennel, it was a two-person job anyway, but very simple). The others I completed on my own.

This is a big deal. One of the results of the abuse that I endured was learned helplessness. And I had already learned to be helpless with regards to assemblies thanks to IKEA. (Rawr! I still won’t try to assemble IKEA furniture!).

I also have a low patience threshold with these things: I get frustrated quickly and easily.

But … my partner has been helping me with a ton of projects around the house, and they’re endlessly patient, cooperative, enabling,and helpful. They’re also an amazing teacher. And they listen to me and hear my suggestions and … turns out, I have some good ideas. Who knew?

So, now, when I buy something that does need assembly, I know I can get it together (except IKEA, never fucking trying that bullshit again). I go into it confidently. When I hit a snag, it doesn’t infuriate or upset me. It confuses the bejeebus out of me, and then I figure it out.

And I know if I do get truly stuck: I have the most amazing help 20 minutes away… or a FaceTime call. And that person is safe to ask for said help.

And most of this? I did during some incredibly hard EMDR reprocessing and an especially challenging cycle.

In fact… that 100lb lost mark?

… that was lost 2 days after hitting it. Over the course of this cycle I gained 14 lbs in 9 days. Shot back up to 172. I sure did.

So when shark week ended, I went ahead and engaged in a 48-hour fast and got back to eating healthy foods and tracking my calories. I’m back down to 159 now. Yes, I lost those 13lbs in about 5 days.

This is why I don’t worry about my PMS binges. I’ve been doing this now for a long time, I know how quickly the weight drops after my cycle.

It’s not true weight gain. I mean yes, I definitely had several 4000 calorie days in there, but it takes longer, sustained over-eating to truly gain weight. I’m ok with this. Mostly it was hormones, water, and salt causing retention. Also some chocolate cake, pizza, meatball grinder, and chocolate chip cookie dough, too. Oh and bagels w/ cream cheese.

I’m a food disaster sometimes, my friends. But it’s moderated by how well I eat (and don’t eat) the rest of the time.

Anyway. Transparency. I hope it helps some folks on their journey.

I’ll be back at the 100lb lost mark tomorrow.

My goal for May is to be solidly in the 150s, to get my set point low enough that a big day won’t throw me back in the 160s. 10 days left in May: easily on track to reach that goal.

I feel like I am finally finding myself again. Feeling “right” and safe in my own skin.

To finish, photo time!

Things and stuff.

Just putting something here so the RIP posts for Elka & Milton aren’t the top-most post.

As for them? I miss them and there’s no way to make a big enough statement to encompass the big feelings. I have a memorial wall, photos everywhere. I still cry nearly every day over them. I also feel at peace; I had a lot of time with them. I gave them a good life – not great, because of the abuse I, myself endured – but a good life.

As for me? I’m doing amazing. I’m at my lowest adult weight ever, only in the “overweight” range, and on track to hit my goal weight by September. I intermittent fast nearly every day, cook giant meals of low calories thanks to volume eating, and walk 2-5 miles every day. I set up a stand for my yoga trapeze/trx/wodfit rubber bands and went from being able to do only 4 assisted pull-ups (blue band, not even on the strong, black band) and this morning I did eight assisted pull-ups! That’s in less than a week.

I see K 1-2x/week and may explore opening up my social circle now that the pandemic seems to be…. more manageable? Thanks, summer.

In EMDR now 2x/week dealing with the many years of trauma inflicted by my exes. Learning a lot about myself, how I got there, why I stayed, and how to heal and keep myself safe now.

Anyway, no one I know reads this anymore since I quit writing. Blogging made way for social media. Are small, personal blogs even a thing anymore? Who the hell knows. But here I am, randomly and rarely writing here.