Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Been Away Chasing Ghosts and Facing My Past

I don’t have the energy to post something that makes sense right now. I’ve had a lot going on but the stress and discomfort has been worth it. I’m finally contacting my father after three years. I’m still decompressing and processing and my mind is a little numb, but here I go-

I’m terrified as I have not officially mailed the letter and that’s what I’m heading out to do now. However, I feel strangely giddy and I can finally take deep breathes again!!! Holy shit! I remember the exact moment my lungs opened up and took in a significantly larger amount of air. Had I really been holding my breath for that long? My brain has been hyperventilating, I’m sure of it. Wow! I don’t know what to say. I feel so much relief. I feel proud of myself for following through on something for me, and not because someone else told me to. I can’t tell you how many times I heard from those who were aware of my paternal exile to just “call him. He’s your father. He’s not mad at you.” First of all, yes, yes he is mad at me. Now, he’s unfairly mad at me and he’s not taking any responsibility for the state of our relationship. However, these people do not know my father and they really don’t know me. There are a lot of factors involved- no abuse, nothing scandalous, no skeletons in the closet. Well. Except for mine.

I do have skeletons in my closet but not of the shameful, hidden kind. I shared all my secrets and begged for help as a child (and as an adult). You see, my skeletons where the kind that make up nightmares- literally. As some of you have read, I have a peculiar condition that has caused me to regularly experience sleep paralysis and other associated parasomnia experiences that create a lucid nightmare- a conscious but altered state that can wreak havoc on the sanest of minds. A little dramatic, I know, but please hear me out. Imagine having to navigate two realities in which the senses do not differentiate between real and dream, even when one realizes it’s a dream.

It’s hard to explain but if you can understand that the brain is what tells us what we are feeling, ultimately. Because senses can be shut off and do so naturally. For example, when most people fall into a deep sleep, they may not sense someone touching them, hear the dogs barking nearby, smell the neighbor smoking outside, or see the flashing lights that bounce off the walls even though the lights are bright enough to penetrate the eyelid. I think people would be surprised to find out what they’re able to sleep through. I would be surprised to find out that I ever slept through anything at all. The stimuli is strong enough during the waking state, but the brain shuts down to rest, including “detaching” the body and mind during sleep (I rarely experience this detachment or rest during sleep as I cannot sleep through anything).

This is what happens to me-

My brain becomes conscious during REM. This consciousness lies on a spectrum and it’s a dynamic consciousness. I’ll leave it at that for now. When I become conscious during dreaming, the part of the brain that activates the senses becomes part of my awareness. If something appears to be crushing my leg, I will feel as if something is crushing my leg. My intense focus and my awareness will magnify the sensation and I have felt pain that is only imaginable. A good analogy would be when someone sets their hand on a stove eye or iron and for one split second, believes it to be hot; the person will often feel heat and some will even see redness where they thought they were burned. This can happen on all levels- from the very subtle to the alarmingly extreme. Pain is a warning and pain, in and of itself, is not harmful.

Basically, the majority of my REM experiences incorporate distorted messages to my brain, causing me to sense things that are occurring in the dream (this is internal stimuli). Also, external stimuli- noises, smells, vibrations, etc- can be incorporated into the lucid dream state.

What’s the point of all of this? Well, what I’m getting at is that I have spent my entire life dealing with these experiences on my own. No one could understand what I was talking about and it wasn’t until I was in my thirties that I started finding information. I’m not complaining. Honestly, I’m glad I’m the way I am (and maybe that’s my sickness). But it alters the course of one’s life and it greatly interferes with relationships. My obsession with finding answers was because I was desperate for help. I was being told I had a psychiatric condition, and I understand why. But they were wrong and the medications interfered with my sleep. Also, I was always “encouraged” to not talk about my dreams or the sleeping experiences. I understand they thought it was an obsession, but they did not listen. That’s ok because I think this is a personal journey and even those who want to help may have led me down the wrong path. I am thankful for this because for whatever reason, the struggle has made my life have deeper meaning. The isolation- both the self-imposed and the times when others chose to ostracize me- it was exactly what I needed. I don’t fault those who pushed me away. Everyone is just trying to find peace and happiness, and most people are faking it.

Once again, I’ve gone on too long, but I don’t care. I’ll probably come back and clean up this post a little, but I see no need to wait to post. I've got to complete my final mission and mail this thing.

For those of you that are interested, I’ve posted the letter to my father on this page. Feel free to comment here about the letter, if you’re so inclined.

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Quick Post and a Quick Preview

Hi All!!!!

Again, I want to say THANK YOU!!!!! Thank you to all the support, advice, and good vibes you sent my way while I was dealing with my social crisis. I don't think I can fully express in words how much I appreciate the blogging world and all the great people I've met on here so far. I can't wait to meet more.

I will hopefully be posting again later today so I can update you guys all the happenings in Amelia's world. My blogging has been delayed because I sliced my thumb knuckle with a newly sharpened carving knife while doing the dishes. Yes, I should have gotten stitches, especially since 3 days later, it's still splitting open and bleeding a little. The good news is that both the knife and my hand were clean at the time of the accident and the scolding hot water, I'm sure, helped to eliminate germs. So far, no infection and no weird swelling or coloration. It was a clean slice and it should heal but I think I needed stitches. No insurance, no money but I think this should have been my one time of going to the ER just to be on the safe side. I'm concerned about infection and I'm also concerned that the scar may form in a way that limits the range of motion. However, I'll live and I can appreciate a battle wound.

BTW- It's very hard to get along with your day when you're down a functional thumb. I never knew and now I shall treat my thumbs with more respect. Maybe I should name them.

Anyway, I've got to catch up on some cleaning but I can't wait to post pics of my awesome canine boys and share more stories. I also need to catch up on some blogs. Here's a quick preview and a teaser pic of one of my wonderful pooches. Darryl is the youngest of the bunch and the last one we rescued off the streets. He weighs about 80-85 lbs and sleeps between us in our bed.

Cheers and I'll be seeing all of you soon!!!

Friday, April 29, 2011

That's Where the Lizard Lives!

First order of business- THANK YOU to all who commented and to all who read the last two (one, two) frantic posts. I felt weak and once again, you guys helped me to grow a pair.

Jen Jen- It’s nice to meet you and I appreciate your comment. It was short and to the point and it helped more than you know.

Lita- I need to stop toeing the line on this. What I said in the post was honest. As jaded and manipulative as people can be, it’s hard to argue with the proverbial saying, “Honesty is the best policy”. I need to shit or get off the pot and believe in who I am without giving up on humanity. I can’t keep running from this. “If you don’t stand for something, you’ll fall for anything”. Thank you!!!

Almost.Skinny (although I prefer to call you Skinny Vegan)- I think I have a virtual crush on you. In all seriousness, I appreciate your kindness and attention more than you know. You’re in my thoughts quite a bit and I can’t wait to share the sleep resources. I have not forgotten, just been busy. I’m feeling great inspiration and strength from this and I’m loving this creative energy I feel.

Moonlight Mistress- What can I say? I feel like we go way back and I think we’re kindred spirits. Once again, your words of advice are incredibly useful. Just the relief of having feedback has been enormously helpful. You’re awesome!!!

Cammie- I never replied to your comment about my rambling post. Thanks for the compliment and it’s nice to meet you!!!

Mich and Glitch- You two chicks are quite the writers and I’ve enjoyed reading some of your past posts. My ADHD likes to distract me while I’m reading, but you guys make my efforts to concentrate worth the energy. Did that come out right? What I’m trying to say is that your blogs are like a carnival for my ADHD brain- it can’t wait to ride all the rides and just soak it all in.

Ephimera- I look forward to more conversations about all things lucid dreaming. I’m very happy to know you.

Oh, as for the title of the post, here’s a cute story to lighten the mood:

I have a couple of large canine companions. They…are…AWESOME!

****One day I’ll share the story of how my dogs saved my life (you’ll enjoy this one, Skinny Vegan, as this story will reveal one of my coping tools for sleep paralysis and the other freaky dream stuff). ****

So, back to the story of Canine # 1. He has discovered the joys of hunting lizards in the backyard. He’s been observing the whole lizard thing for a while and today I witness my boy having an epiphany- the lizards hang out around the lawn mower.

He was trotting along the pool, headed for the door and he stopped at the mower. He turned his head sideways, his eyes lite up and then his head dropped as he placed his nose closer to the ground. His forehead crinkled and I swear he cracked a smile. He looked at me as if to say, “This is where the lizard lives!” and he was thrilled when a lizard quickly emerged as if to say, ”Olly olly oxen free? I hate that sometimes his nose tags are fatal to the lizard but the furry bastard doesn’t mean any harm. It’s the circle of life, right? I don’t care. These dogs bring much joy and love into my life.

That’s it. Just wanted to share a little fact about me that you didn’t know- I have rescued dogs.

Cheers Everyone!!!


Seriously, folks. I can't fucking stand this one more minute. Why am I feeling so guilty about this girl? If anything, I've been honest and very sincere. I shouldn't be afraid of the emails. What could happen, right?

I should just read the emails now, right? Anyone? She has sent me 3 or 4 (along with 3 or 4 text messages, and 2 voicemails). We didn't have plans. I never stood her up. We met at a party last October. Since then, I've gone out with her 3 times. THREE TIMES!!! Why do I feel so obligated to be her friend? Am I not allowed to feel a bit overwhelmed? Am I not allowed to have boundaries with people?

I'm going to read the emails soon. I have to because I can't avoid this and keep obsessing over this. I'll read them a lot sooner if anyone has any words of encouragement. I feel like a fucking alien. I've had people blow me off, good friends too. Sometimes people need to be alone or need to focus on other things. Is it wrong of me to think she should be able to understand this?

If I read them and they make me mad, I don't want to tear her a new one either. My honestly can be brutal and when I know I'm right, I'm quite confident in my words. But I don't want to fake anything either.

What the fuck is wrong with me? Anyone? Please submit your diagnosis below. Cut me to the bone, if you want. Tell me how it is. I want to push through this. I want to be pushed. But if you tell me to "just call her", I'm at a loss. I piss people off with my awkwardness which is hilarious seeing as how I'm the one who is AWKWARD!!!! If I call her and I can't answer her questions or if my tone isn't right, well, that never goes over well and people always want a follow up. I'm done with follow ups, if that makes sense. If you don't get me, move along (not you guys). But you get my gist, right? All I'm saying is that I'm as honest as it gets. If that's seen as my greatest fault, then so be it.

Need Advice for the Socially Challenged (me)

This is long and I'm sorry. I want to get back to posting but my brain is consumed with something. Maybe someone out there will have some advice. If not, no worries. At least I'm getting it off my chest, right?

I can’t fucking take this and I need some advice. Over the past couple of years, I’ve been trying to be more social and try to make friends (after some major breakups and betrayals). Last fall I met this girl and we hit it off, but she lives about an hour or more away from me. We’ve only met up a few times in the past 7 months since we met. A couple of months ago, the shit hit the fan for me on many levels and I became overloaded which causes me to shut down. I quit responding to her emails and phone calls because I was overwhelmed and didn’t want to commit to something (yet knowing I’m a pushover and always say yes). I finally emailed her a month ago explaining my lack of contact and apologizing for any hurt feelings. I also try to make it clear that we didn’t really know each other that well and I’m not comfortable sharing my personal stuff, even though we seemed to click quite well.

Fair enough, right? I was as honest as I could be but I also let her know that this is how I handle stuff. I was hoping to get back to her shortly but there was more shit to come. After that email, I had a huge falling out with a family member, we had to come up with several thousand dollars and it was my fault we got into the situation, my husband and I had our first real fight, my doctor blew me off and encouraged me to isolate myself, and a slew of other stuff happened.

First of all, I do not feel sorry for myself and all these hardships I’ve dealt with lately were good for me. I’m not a victim and I think I came away stronger and with some personal growth. It also got be back on track with blogging and that’s been a big help (thank you guys).

Here’s the deal- this friend has been trying to contact me again and I’ve had too much going on to read her emails (I get insanely obsessed over things and if I read her emails, there’s a chance it will cause some serious stress issues). It’s silly, I know. And I feel like a total jackass and complete basket case for being so emotionally weak, but that’s why I went to my doctor and I’m working on it.

I was planning on addressing the “friend” issue this weekend after having some much needed work. Unfortunately, I just saw part of the email she sent me and she is pissed off. I know what’s going to be in the email from the tone- I’m inconsiderate, inconsistent, dishonest about wanting to be friends, and I know I’ve hurt her feelings (probably beyond repair). I don’t know if the email is an attempt to see if I still want to be friends or if it’s just an email tearing me a new one.

So, I need some advice, if anyone has any to share. At this time, I’m not comfortable with talking to her. I understand how she feels and I know I’ve confused her but we’re grown women, right? We don’t know each other that well and I think I was honest in the last email. I thought that she would understand that this isn’t about her. Not one bit. My husband thinks I should just call her but I don’t know what to say and I don’t want to make plans to get together to repair this because I’m confused.

Look, if anyone can relate, or if anyone understands what it’s like to be neurologically different (mild Asperger’s) and confused by social situations and social norms, please help me. I’m going to drive my husband crazy with this and the longer I bottle this up, the more it will spill out through isolation. This shakes my confidence to be even a little bit social and I feel like I should just do everyone a favor and keep to myself. And that’s what I’ve been doing. But people won’t let me do that either. Everyone wants answers-

“Why do you do that, Amelia? Why do you disappear? What did I do to you?”

Anyone? I can take criticism and tough love. I don’t want to hurt this girl but at the same time, I feel she’s stepping over boundaries. In fact, I’m fairly certain she contacted a friend I introduced her to and inquired about me. That’s another reason I haven’t read her emails. I saw that in the first two lines of one of her emails and it made me uncomfortable.

I’ll stop talking now….

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Ramblings from My Past

All this blogging has inspired me to face one of my fears. Since I was old enough to write in a journal, I’ve been taking notes- thoughts, rants, wishes, ideas, stories, dreams, words, memories, etc. I have held on to almost every piece of paper, bound journal, notebook, napkin, electronic files, and any other thing I used to record life events, yet I have never gone back to read any of them. Once in a while, I would scan through something or look for a memory, but for the most part, I’ve been afraid to face my past.

It’s been building for a while. I’ve kept these things for a reason, and that reason has been itching at the back of my brain (probably somewhere in the pineal gland), bubbling to the surface. I’m ready to face myself, and my thoughts. It’s time for me to take all these chaotic (dated) notes, and put them in order. It’s time for me to review my life and I think it’s going to help me move forward. I’ll be able to explain this better as time passes, I hope. For now, I’d like to share a note from my past. I will not interpret it or make comments at this time, except for this- I’m aware that my thoughts are repeating and obsessive. It’s time to breathe life into these thoughts, share them and let them go. Take the message and move forward. Maybe I’m wrong. Maybe this is going to be a trip to crazy, obsessive town- a place that my mind gets stuck in a gear, unable to move forward but frantically revving the engine in futile effort to forget. Fuck it. Enjoy. Note the date:

August 20, 2001

(*A dated note on a single piece of paper, torn from a spiral notebook)

In the grand scheme of things, nothing changes. It just cycles. I enter a new place, knowing no one. And I try to handle myself and situations differently. And still, the same reactions, same order of events. It’s like Groundhog’s Day. It’s as if there is already a natural order to my life. These events will happen. These people will react this way no matter what. Maybe the trick isn’t to try to change myself, but to be me to the fullest. Each day I sabotage myself- I rig my day to fail in some spectacular, hopeless way. As if to say, “See? I told you it would happen.”

As always, my dreams are evolving before me, spiraling towards an answer. Feels like I’m falling. But maybe my dreams are telling me not to fight who I am.

In my dreams, often I am trying to explain to others that this is a dream. Most of the time, my efforts to convince are futile- people don’t listen, don’t care. Once in a while, a curious figure will listen, but in the end, the only important thing is that I know.

Understanding is personal. The comfort it provides in my own experience. Others will have to find their own answers.

I fight gravity too much. Like fighting physics.

The same scenario. Always the same scenario. They happen far enough apart to feel like déjà vu at first.

All people have a desire to control pain. Some prefer to inflict pain to stop the emotional pain they can’t control.”

Monday, April 25, 2011

Great Article on Sleep Paralysis

I have to make this quick, since I'm only on a 10 minute break. This is for Skinny Vegan and anyone else interested in some of the dreaming stuff we've been discussing. This article, in particular, focuses on the bizarre sensations of vibrations and buzzing sounds, etc. that many experience but never talk about it out of fear. I'll make comments about it later but here's some links:
The Lucid Dreaming Cafe - Great site, if anyone is interested.

Check it out, if you're into it.


Running To Stand Still

I’m having a rough day today, but it’s not so much about me. Some very dear friends could have died the other night and the story behind that is mortifying (because of my nightmares and my photographic memory, I have a hard time not visualizing the details). Also, a family member is struggling and I gave her the money I was going to use for yoga (which brings me to tears because it’s the one thing that helps me and eliminates my need for sleep aids).

I’m not making this about me as I am very lucky to maintain a positive outlook and I have found a way to approach most of my challenges with a “bring it on” attitude. I don’t tend to feel sorry for myself, but I do have a propensity to blame myself and feel as if I were more organized and responsible and wasn’t such a fuck up, I’d have more to offer. People are often annoyed by my ability to “always look on the bright side of life” (Monty Python, if you’re wondering). What they don’t realize is that this is my survival mechanism.

U2 has a beautiful song called, “Running to Stand Still” which has been my personal anthem for over 15 years. The song was inspired by the heroin addiction in Dublin during the time. But, of course as most songs are, it’s a metaphor for many things. When I heard this song I connected with it because of my dreams. Since I experience sleep paralysis and lucid nightmares, along with intense sensations of pain and overwhelming emotions, it made me think of how, when I’m trapped in the sleep paralysis, I can’t move but in my mind, I can hear myself screaming and thrashing. I could dissect each lyric but I’ll just mention a few for the sake of time:

“And so she woke up
Woke up from where she was lying still
Said I gotta do something about where we're going

When I wake up from these nightmares, this is what I hear in my head.

"I see seven towers
But I only see one way out
You got to cry without weeping
Talk without speaking
Scream without raising your voice"

This symbolizes not knowing what to do to find my way out and, in my dreams, I am crying without weeping, talking without words, and I’m screaming with no sound and no one to hear me.

"Stolen from the sea she is raging, she is raging
And the storm blows up in her eyes
She will suffer the needle chill
She's running to stand still"

The raging sea plays a big part in my dreams (symbolizing positive and negative strength). I feel the wind in my dreams as well, which is a strange but constant theme.

For me, the chill of the needle is more about the metamorphosis my brain enters into, this altered state by no fault of my own, fucking with my senses.

So, all of my life, I’ve been Running to Stand Still. Running from these nightmares, hoping that one day I will find stillness.

Skinny Vegan- I promise to get back to you as soon as I can (I have work today) but I want to share so much with you (and others). I understand your struggle and I think we can help each other. You are constantly in my thoughts and I thank all of you for giving me the strength to share my secrets. You guys help me keep a positive attitude, even when I feel like a complete failure.

Much love and I hope you all have a wonderful Monday (or Tuesday, depending where you live, of course!)


Enjoy the song. I'm going to go jump in the pool, shake off this moment of despair and remind myself that beating myself up, dwelling, and feeling inferior in any way, does not serve me. We must love ourselves, care for ourselves, before we are truly able to serve others. Otherwise, we are merely fragments of true self which distorts the beauty and love that we all have (at least, that's how I see it)

Friday, April 22, 2011


I really need to go to bed but I clicked on a blog and listened to a song while reading the lyrics and it just fucking got to me. I have to keep this short because-

#1-I want to watch Smallville (I am a fan, longterm, forever. Yep. Fucking love Smallville I can school most nerds in Smallville trivia.)

#2- I got a hot dress and a hot date tomorrow and I want to feel well rested.

This song, correct me if I’m wrong, is about an ED. I think to myself, “I can’t relate. I’ve never been either” (thinking only ana/mia), but I’m forgetting something and I’m not able to be completely honest because I don’t know how to articulate it. My obsession was weight management through constant physical activity and exercise, not ana or mia. That's another topic for another time. But I’m missing something, what brought here is because there is a connection, a struggle.

So, I decide to listen to the song and I realized that I am struggling because I am constantly putting up smoke and mirrors. I don’t want to hide but it seems to me that people just want me to say I’m ok and not talk about anything that might evoke emotions. No one wants to talk about their fears. My oldest friend; the girl I met when I was 9 years old. My best friend but we did not spend our teenage years together. She changed and the friendship is gone. She said it when I last saw her. She said that “of course we have to project an image and of course I have to keep secrets even from you. That’s how it is and that’s what people do.” Is it me? Am I a child still? My heart sank because she was saying that it’s absolutely crucial to survive to never completely reveal yourself to others, not even the one you love. And this makes me so sad; almost distraught.

I hear such a strange silence when I think about this. When are we taught this? Why did I miss it? Why am I so gullible, so willing to take people at face value and be honest? I have been reprimanded as an adult for not “faking it till I make it”. I’m angry that people expect me to fake anything. And they get mad when I don’t do it in a believable and genuine manner. I feel like I’m forced to tell a lot of lies to make people feel better and they aren’t necessary. There’s no reason not to share but I’ve learned and I’ve also learned to watch people’s eyes and mannerisms to know when I need to stop talking or spin things around. Sometimes I reach out and I try to share something. I did it again tonight. I shouldn’t have. Something bad might come out of it. I’ll keep you posted.

This song got to me. The hardest part of being me is that I see others share. I see others commune and socialize. So, what I’m hearing, what I’m feeling is that I’m not good enough to be heard. People dismiss me; blow me off like I’m some fucking little girl. And that’s what this is about- whatever I’m doing right now, I finally feel like I’m making it, that I’m stronger. Why am I listening to these other people? Why am I not just fully speaking out, taking all the chances, embracing who I am? I don’t have anything to lose and I have a lot of confidence in my sanity and my ability to take care of myself.

I’m nervous about going out tomorrow because there will be a lot of people who know me. I prefer strangers- first impression are my forte. At least I have my husband. People accept me because of him and because we finally got married. They like me better because now they know at least there’s something semi-normal, grounded about me. I resent that so much. He is not my keeper and he does not define me (fortunately, we agree on this and that’s all that matters). I’m trying to rehearse what to say and I know when I get nervous, I act weird. I have strange movements and tics. There not bad enough for people to be clued in that it’s neurological, so they think there’s something up with me. I'm always amazed that people think I have this enormous amount of confidence, but when they find out that I'm this insecure child who just wants a friend, it's like they're disgusted me. Like how could I be so pathetic?

So, I need my sleep so I’ll be balanced tomorrow and be well equipped to fend off the natives and keep them at arm’s length. After all, that’s what they’ve asked of me and I’m doing my best to do it convincingly. Wish me luck.

Sweet Dreams, all.

Thursday, April 21, 2011

The Most Beautiful Girl in the Room

Lita over at Wanting to Wear Anything posted something very inspirational last night and I thought some of you might enjoy her refreshing and positive attitude. I like her. I follow her. I recommend her.

Today, she posted some pics and since I always looks at pics first before reading, I was surprised to find out that some of the pics were her. I thought, "Damn! She could be a model" and for some reason I wanted to add, “and not a part-time model” which made me giggle because this is from a song from an episode of Flight of the Conchords. Ever heard of them? Their humor might not be for everyone but I freaking LOVE THEM! I even find them attractive because they’re character personalities are adorably awkward.

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Forty Six & 2 by Tool

Any Tool fans? I highly recommend watching this youtube video. I don't know who put this together but they provide the lyrics and explain some of the concepts and meanings behind the song which are deeply rooted in Carl Jung's theory which brings us back to whole dreaming topic. I've been working on another post (focusing on sleep paralysis) to help open up the forum for those who are interested. I will also continue to post information about my nutrition and over-all wellbeing as this is a big part of how I deal with my neurological differences (I'm holding steady at 126 and feeling great, if you'd like to know).

Tool is an amazing band and their lyrics are profound and should speak to so many of you- whether you recall your dreams or not, this isn't about dreaming- it's about awareness and personal growth. If you get the chance, watch their music videos. They're definitely on the gritty side but that's how I like it- dark, raw and honest. There is so much beauty in things when they are stripped of all their superficial adornments.

***Quick Update: I should add that the person who did this video offers a lot of theories about human evolution (of the mind) and you should take it worth a grain of salt and don't let it shake you up, if it bothers you. To me, it's poetic and creative theories and fascinating to contemplate, but I'm fairly certain that the song was written about a more personal, internal struggle (i.e., Maynard's shadows) and not about labeling and dividing people on an evolutionary level. Again, I'm going on memory so I might be wrong, Tool is a "Think for yourself, Question Authority" type of artist. It's not a follow the herd and the asses-of-the-masses band. That's all I wanted to add...for now.

Reply to Almost Skinny Vegan

( Moonlight Mistress, and Ephemera also expressed interest and I'd love to hear from others.)

After reading her dream post, I had to make comments but what I have to say is way too long for a comment or even a post on my HOME page. So, in interest of not overloading the main blog, I created a page labeled DREAMS. This is where I have posted Skinny Vegan's dream with my comments and questions. I don't know if it makes sense or if it will work but please feel free to read it and then post your comments here.

I'll post resources and links but this has already sucked up most of my day but I'm not complaining. I have to find a way to time manage blogging but since I've been obsessing over this, I quit watching pointless TV, I haven't looked at gossip sites, and I'm not wasting my time doing nothing. This has been therapeutic and just the creative outlet I've needed to get me going in a direction.

Thanks guys and I hope this formatting works. Please let me know if there's any confusion about the page thing or the comments.

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Strange Dreams, Anyone?

Skinny Vegan asked me to expand more on my comment about being a lucid dreamer. If I try to explain everything I think is important, it will take too long so I thought I’d post an actual dream I recorded two years ago. First, I few quick FAQ about my dreaming experiences:

  • Since I was a toddler, I’ve talked about my dreams. I remember dreams every night, usually several. I lucid dream, experience sleep paralysis awareness, have out of body experiences (which are actually vestibular disturbances) and I experience intense sensations. This happens at least a few times a month and sometimes several times a night.
  • I do not understand what it’s like to sleep “normal”. As soon as I drift off, I dream and there is no true rest from thoughts or stimuli.
  • I understand a lot of the biology and physiology behind these sleeping experiences. I cannot speak for others, but I have no reason to believe that I am having a paranormal or supernatural (religious or other) experience. However, I think dreams are very important and that taping into an altered state of consciousness- There’s no drug or other experience that compares. The dream I’m posting is after a lifetime of these types of dreams. To me, this is a discipline that can be practiced and somewhat mastered but not in the sense of control. In fact, the key to lucid dreaming is to let go of fear and to let go of having control. It’s about total acceptance (remember the Fight Club scene I posted- it says it all) and being ok with not knowing, not having all the answers. It’s not giving up or blind faith. I think my dreams want me to truly trust myself and in dreams, I believe, you can’t lie to yourself.

Here are a few abbreviations and terms to know:

  • SP- Sleep Paralysis
  • LD- Lucid Dreaming
  • OBE- Out of Body Experience
  • D- My Husband

I never let anyone read my dream journal so this is kind of weird. It's long and I'm sorry for all the long posts, but I can't post this one any other way. It’s hard to follow but this is how I recorded it over two years ago:

Feel asleep around 2:15 or 2:30am.

At 3:15am I was woken up by a loud noise (it was nothing but the startle kept me awake for a while).

Since I had only been asleep for a couple of hours and I was up for about an hour after the noise, I knew there was a good chance I was going to “go down the rabbit hole”. I can predict fairly accurately when “its” going to happen. Like 90% accurate.

I told my husband (D) that it’s probably going to happen (which is code for all things dream related). He recommended that I take a klonopin since I was anxious about it. However, I was curious to see if I was right. I knew it might be unpleasant but I thought it would be a good opportunity to see if I was right.

It was 4:30am, maybe closer to 4:45. D went to smoke a cigarette. I purposely lay on my stomach knowing this was a good position for OBE’s and SP’s. However, I can experience it in any position.

As soon as I turned over onto my stomach, I started feeling the head thing- waa,waa,waa – zapping sounds-whizzing sounds. I could still hear the TV and the sound of D outside. I felt the sensation of lightness. It always starts in my arms. They feel weightless and begin to float up while my body is still on the bed. It’s a slow, gradual process and a phase that I am usually able to pull myself out of. I’ll start to feel my head raise, then my chest. But then I usually come partly out of it. I wanted to tell D about it.

I kept slipping back into it. It was difficult to fight because of the overwhelming tiredness I felt from having only an hour of sleep (I had entered REM and was dreaming when I was first woken by the noise).

While experiencing the floating sensation, I begin to fear that maybe it was really happening (which means I was losing some of my lucidity and grasp since I know I am not really floating). I was afraid of freaking D out and I began to do my “Am I Dreaming” Checklist.

I started to struggle to get back down to the bed. I began panicking even though I knew what was happening. I knew if I struggled it would turn into a negative experience. I also knew that if I let go, I might slip into a very strange world, deeper in which means harder to get out. I wasn’t so sure I was ready for it because I knew that I would also probably get sucked into the dream which can be terrifying. I should also note that at times I’m ok with it. I try to have a warrior mentality (silly but it works) and accept the experience. Plus, I know that once I wake up, I will no longer hold on to the fear (I’m talking about raw, you’re going to die and it’s time to face it fear). In fact, it’s quite exhilarating to realize it not real. But I also know that the dream world does not abide by the real world sense of time. I know that the experience lasts at most a couple of hours (not all SP or OBE, but it’s a lucid dream filled with moments of it as well as extreme pain) but it can seem much longer, sometimes days, even weeks.

When I started to struggle, I found it difficult to pull myself out of it. I felt as if I was being pushed faced down in the bed, being smothered. I was no longer able to snap myself out but I felt certain D would notice something. I thought I was moving a little and I could hear myself moaning. Also, I thought D was still awake and that he would say something to me like goodnight.

I finally wrestled myself awake. I sit up in bed, feeling as if I had been thrashing. I was out of breath but my heart wasn’t pounding. In fact, I wasn’t really out of breath or breathing hard. It was in my head. I was out of breath in my head.

Only about 15 mins had passed since I first tried to go to sleep. All of that happened in 15 minutes. It felt much longer. D was already in bed. He was barely awake and I asked him if he heard me or saw any movement. He said I had not made any noise or movement. In fact, he says that he has never seen me move or make any noise (keep in mind he usually is always asleep before me). I told him it had happened and I knew it was going to keep happening. He was too tired to talk and it was nearing 5:15am.

I decided to go back in, to be the warrior. I had a multitude of experiences, many of them mashed together. What I want the most is OBE but I tend to chicken out or let go, causing myself to slip into a dream with SP and pain and other sensations. I lose my grip on knowing what’s happening and I slide into a dream incorporating the sensations. The dreams incorporated the night’s events, causing the dream to seem even more real because it picks up where my waking life left off. This is an element that causes me to come to the conclusion that what’s happening is real and not a dream.

I felt my face swelling and it became impossible to speak. My jaw felt intense pressure (this time more my jaw and not my teeth). It was if something was prying them open. I was gagging from this and the sensation of my throat swelling shut creating an intense choking sensation. I was trying to remain calm as I realized that panicking would make it even more difficult to breathe.D was there but he wasn’t noticing what was happening.

At some point, I started begging to go to the ER (last week I had a migraine and wanted to go to the ER). D turned around and the voice of my father came out- “What the hell do you expect for them to do for you there?” It was just a split second, as if my father came out of D and then it was over. The message from my father kept going in my head:

  • This isn’t real so doctors can’t help you.
  • There is no medicine or treatment for this.
  • It’s your fault this happens. If you weren’t so neurotic, crazy, weak, you wouldn’t have these fake experiences.

I woke occasionally during these experiences, finally turning on my side thinking it would stop it. But the last dream was the last draw for me. I woke up all the way, but I was still groggy and new it would happen again. I was worn out. It was only 6:30am meaning that the experiences occurred between 5am and 6:30am. It felt like hours and hours. I decided to take a klonopin since it seems to be the most successful in stopping the experience. Ambien would not have been a good choice.

When I finally got up around noon, I wasn’t disturbed or concerned or morbidly consumed with the experience. I found it fascinating. Exhilarating.

It's only been in the past couple of years that I've been able to let go of the ominous depression that followed each experience. The relief is indescribable and has brought me peace. There were times I thought the silent suffering would be the death of me, but it was worth it. I sound insane, don't I?

Still, there is a heavy and longstanding loneliness that stems from having no one to talk to that remotely understands. I’ve never met anyone that has had significant experiences with this. Maybe SP a couple of times and maybe a few OBE’s from a handful of people over the course of my life. Most of them think it’s paranormal. They think it’s inviting demons. Many would say that it was a demon holding me down, smothering me. I’m not afraid of the supernatural. I’m not trying to rationalize my experience in a way that won’t allow for a supernatural or paranormal element. But it doesn’t feel like it. I’ve even tried to talk to “spirits” in my dreams. Calling them to show themselves because I remember what people say. But this seems to be so subjective and a part of the human psyche. It’s an altered state of consciousness, allowing me to explore who I am on all levels, even physical. I know the pain isn’t physically real. What I feel is as real as when it happens in the waking world because it's all in my head. All pain is in the head. The only purpose pain serves is to warn us of danger but pain isn't harmful. The difference in my dreams is that there is no real trauma or damage being done to my body. I feel intense pain, worse than any pain I’ve ever experienced. Pain that feels like it would kill me. It still happens to me now. However, the fear upon waking seems to dissipated quickly. I don’t dwell as to why me, why does it happen to me? I’m glad it does. It’s lonely, yes. And I wish I had someone, anyone to talk to about it. But I take solace in the fact that this makes me unique. I get to experience something most never will. My life would be boring without it. It has given my life meaning and helped me understand things at a level for which there are no words. Often there are no words to describe a dream because it’s so cerebral. It’s the thoughts of my conscious and I comprehend things that I can’t describe in words. Maybe I am insane but I think quite the opposite- it takes quite a bit of sanity on my part to not allow these dreams to breakdown my sense of reality. I have NEVER been awake and thought I was dreaming. I do not think I'm important or special because I do this. It's most likely a REM sleep disorder. Narcoleptics experience these things. So do some people with certain types of seizures or as a result of having seizures. I've mentioned that I'm neurologically different and this is part of it. I also had petite mal seizures when I was 6 years old, around the same time I started remembering all my dreams. I could say it's a disorder but I feel this does not serve my confidence and I need all the confidence I can find to face each night knowing that it might be one of those nights. Even if I do everything right, I'm hardwired to "fall down the rabbit hole". Often, I face death and all the thoughts that might pass through a person's head in that moment, a moment I have never faced in my waking life, but can describe with horrific detail, as if time halted for an infinite moment, as if to say, "This is it. This is your final moment. Here's your last and final thought. Make it good." And it's terror, it's complete stillness and clarity in the mind, a mind that's saying, "I'm not done. I need more time."

As morbid as this sounds, this is what has brought me happiness. And I am happy. I'm happy because I feel like I've past at least one big life test. I had longterm depression because no one would listen to me about these experiences which lead to fear which lead to self-imposed insomnia and consuming too much caffeine and sugar. Instead of trying to control my sleep, I had to begin to under the art of sleep and respect the discipline. Mastering a discipline is not about control; it's about understanding, observing, listening, challenging, and allowing it to kick your butt to the deepest, darkest of places. I'm no where near mastering it and I don't believe I ever will. But there's no way out but through. So I've started listening to my dreams. I've started to confront my fears and it's transferring into my waking life, feeding off each other, depending on each other. Do I fear death? Yes, of course because it's the unknown. But trying to control the dream to make it go away only made my dream-self angry. Again, the Fight Club scene says it all. I had to listen to the dream and let it show me my fears and let my fears consume me to the point I thought I could no longer survive and that fear would actually kill me, even if by simply paralyzing me, not allowing me to defend myself.

I can not go back and edit this post. I can not go back and read it right now. I just wanted to make a final comment after the end of the dream record, but fuck if it's not obvious that I desperately need to share this and vent. The ridiculous thing is that I really want to share this with others, find others who have an insatiable need to understand and to be understood. My biggest fear is that I'm going to die and no one is ever going to know me. No, I don't mean popularity or fame. I feel like I have something to offer, something to share. And I want to learn more and contribute to lives of others, but I'm so odd and I make people uncomfortable with my dream speak.

My husband is so kind. He says i'm very intimidating because (his words) "your very intelligent and your depth of knowledge seems to call others out on their bullshit". He says that I throw people off because I'm sincerely interested in everything and I have an unusual amount of energy, which makes people uncomfortable because they can't label me. I think he's just feeding my ego and giving me a boost so I won't be so hard on myself. I think I put people off and come across as a know-it-all who wants to be different and mysterious. Which is hysterical because the only time I can breathe is when I'm by myself or when I blend into the crowd.

Damn it, I need some sleep. I promise to have shorter posts but hopefully most of you can appreciate the need to get this off my chest.

Thanks for listening. Again.

Monday, April 18, 2011

Double-Dared by Skinny Vegan? I Accept Your Challenge!

(can someone pass me a paper bag before I hyperventilate?)

Almost Skinny Vegan double dared me to write an unedited post after this post to free myself from self-censoring and give myself permission to just let it all hang out. Well, I welcome your challenge and I double-dog dare myself to step up to the plate and let it flow.

So, I guess the best place to start is with why I feel so self-conscious about making a mistake (grammatically speaking) in a blogging forum which is meant to self primarily as a journal. Well, it hit me the other day when I wrote the original post about needing to stop being so perfect. I had two, not one but two, serious boyfriends who were both geniuses. My highschool boyfriend- I used to pass notes back and forth which is was so much fun. I’m smart, witty and can usually one-up any guy when it comes to come backs and jabs and having fun just ragging on each other. I also thought I was a creative writer and I wanted to share this with my boyfriend. I remember quite vividly getting back a note I had written to him and he had corrected all my mistakes in red pen. I had poured my heart out and shared my thoughts but all he saw were the errors. Of course, I was next accused of not having a sense of humor or being able to take playful criticism but his actions seemed more out of mocking and not out of love. I was self conscious enough as it was and already had a father (oh, my father- another painful topic that warrants some free writing). I don’t know why it hurt so much but from that point on, I thought that the only way I would be accepted was if I proved I was smart enough to not make mistakes.

Then there was the college boyfriend. He didn’t go to college with me but he was also a grammar die-hard. It had been years since I had thought about my previous boyfriend but it all came flooding back the day I received in the mail a corrected version of my heartfelt letter professing my love. The mistakes were normal, especially when writing a note (much like chatting online where most people ignore minor mistakes or only take little jabs at errors). It’s like I knew-knew- this guy wasn’t the right person for me but I stayed with him for a long time. Now I know that the person that you’re with, the one that you spend your time with, shouldn’t make you feel stupid or mock you in front of people. This lesson took some time.

And it didn’t stop there. For some reason, even though I am very intelligent and have no reason to doubt my capacity for knowledge, the men in my life felt it was necessary to put me in my place for such trivial mistakes. Guess what? Turns out I have a mild form of dyslexia (most people experience it and stress brings it on for me). I transpose letters, numbers, syllables, etc. In fact, I am neurologically wired differently and my brain and my communication skills aren’t always in sync. My husband finds it fascinating and brilliant that I can make up words that are perfect for what I’m saying. He says that my brain works so fast and thinks so much that there aren’t enough words in the English language to accommodate my unique communication skills. He adores my “mistakes” and he has made them a part of our vocabulary. He sends me the sweetest texts, several times a day, and he pays tribute to my strange verbose talent and now we have a secret code, a language all of our own.

I guess that’s the main point (as I remind myself I am not allowed to go back and re-read this before posting- and I won’t)- all those guys, the men in my life including my father, employers, co-workers, boyfriends- they were all necessary in my life. Because I wouldn’t have appreciated the kind man that I’m with now. They showed me all the things I didn’t want but this man? He taught me about unconditional love and that I was worthy of it. This man treats me like I’m the only girl in the world for him. He compliments me no matter what my weight and has never criticized me for the things that don’t matter. He taught me that I deserve mutual respect and I’m entitled to voice my opinion when I feel mistreated. I love him more than he realizes and I’m baffled that he thinks he’s not good enough for me. This is the man I can grow old with. This is the man that will love my wrinkles and sagging parts for as long as we’re together. There are no guarantees in life and even the happiest couples will struggle to make it. I don’t spend my time worrying that we may, someday, part ways. There’s always a chance. But what I know, what I feel, is that I’m with someone who will see this through to the end, whatever that may be. He won’t kick me to the curb for not being perfect. Hell, he thinks I’m perfect.

I can’t promise that I will only post unedited, unchecked entries. But I will make it a practice to do this frequently so that I can give readers, those kind enough to take the time to read my posts, to see the real me.

OK. I’m freaking the fuck out thinking about posting this all willy-nilly with not even a glance to check for proper sentence structure? So many rules have been broken by this post. What’s a neurotic girl to do? AHHHH! Breathe. Breathe. I kid! I’m not that intense (yes I am). I’m not ever going to re-read this post (total bullshit).

But I must stay true to the double dare code of honor (which follows the same rules as the famous double-dog-dare), and I promise, Almost Skinny Vegan, that I will simply copy and paste (add a couple of hyperlinks only) and I will let this entry be a statement, an oath, a new page in a new chapter that says, “Hey! Amelia, you dork! You’re blogging, not writing your thesis. Give it a rest and enjoy the process!”

Enough! I can’t take it any longer. If I don’t post this now it won’t happen. I’m a nut, I’m a nut, I’m a nut!!!!

Well, Now That You Mention it, Why Yes I Would Like to Dress Up Like Rainbow Brite

I found this over at Etsy. I don't remember Rainbow Brite being, but if I had the chance, I would so wear this costume. My husband would pass out. He loves shit like this and he would totally not expect it. Take any childhood character, live or animated, and strip it of all its innocence and purity by turning it into a sex kitten, dominatrix. Sounds like a healthy fantasy to me.

Sunday, April 17, 2011

I LOVE Her Arms!

I absolutely love how her body photographs! Her arms and collar bones are beautiful. The boots are kick-ass as well and her overall look is inspiring. I'd love to be able to photograph like this. Here's the model's website with her stats.

I added this pic along with a bunch of others to a new page on my blog- Cool Pics.

A Rant Inspired by the Moonlight (Mistress, that is)

Moonlight Mistress commented on my last post and my reply turned into a lengthy rant that seemed more appropriate as a post entry. So, thank you, Mistress of Moonlight, for inspiring this rant as I’ve needed to get this off my chest for a while. So, here goes nothing:

The comments about my weight from certain people have bothered me and I asked my husband over and over about it. He finally said, "Look! You're the healthiest person I know and by far the healthiest person among your co-workers. You run circles around them and never complain of illness or injury. WTF are they doing trying to counsel YOU on a healthy lifestyle?"

And he's right. I used to have an athletic build and I was more muscular. Plus, my weight fluctuated and I tend to carry weight and fluid retention in my face and arms. Once I started doing Bikram yoga and I changed my diet, my muscles became more streamlined and my overall appearance much slimmer. I'm so much stronger than I used to be and I often embarrass the men I work with because I'm able to lift more than them (I'm not claiming I'm stronger, but they're always injured and it's all about how you lift). Most of them are at least slightly over-weight and I don’t think even 10% of them exercise or pay any attention to their diet.

I think the thing that bothers me even more is that there is another female at work who is skinny as a rail. They don’t say a thing to her and she gives me the stink eye every time the co-worker mentions my weight. I feel like she thinks I’m doing this to garner attention. Well, in some ways I am, but not this kind of attention. I like for people to notice me in a positive way. What person doesn’t want to be complimented on their appearance and effort? I’m just baffled that there are a few vocal people (all men) that want me to know that they think I’m too skinny.

Fuck it! I’m going to rant and I’m going to defend myself right now, right here. For anyone to say that I’m too skinny, it is a statement of opinion and personal taste. There is no evidence that I am medically too skinny or in danger of being too skinny. I NEVER get sick or injured. My skin, hair, teeth, nails- all good. No signs there. I’m not anemic and no one can ever accuse me of lacking energy (I am noticeably ADHD so I’m very hyper). Yes, sometimes I forget to eat but that’s mostly due to my ADHD because:

  1. When I become hyper focused, I lose time and I find it easy to go for hours without a break (I love it)
  2. My time management skills suck so I must plan out my meals on busy days
  3. Stress (positive or negative) kill my appetite because I become hyper obsessive.

I work hard to manage my ADHD and to stay healthy. No, I don’t want a donut or cookie or brownie while I’m at work because I’ve learned that maintaining my blood sugar works wonders on my mood and stamina. I love junk food and sometimes I will have a donut but just because I don’t eat that crap doesn't mean I don’t eat. I always have a large container of fresh juice (32 oz) that I drink throughout the day (along with small meals and snacks). Many people think it’s some kind of diet drink or that I’m fasting. WTF? First of all, do they have any clue how many calories are in that 32 ounces of tasty fruit and vegetable juice? It’s loaded with natural sugar which is a great alternative to soda and caffeinated drinks. So the guy that pounds several Monster energy drinks is fine but I’m the one with the poor nutrition habits?

Here’s the thing- It’s nobody’s business, especially at my age. I have a husband and a doctor who would never ignore any health concerns they had for me. I don’t comment on other people’s cigarette smoking or the fact that a lifetime of alcohol binging is going to be detrimental to their health. If they brought it up to me or expressed concern and wanted my input, I would gladly share my honest opinion- discretely (discretion is the key).

When they see me, I’m not sad or weak or expressing concerns about my wellbeing. I’m a happy, full of energy ready-to-go chick (au natural). So what if I’m skinny? I look at my pics and see curves. I see a waist, hips, meat on my thighs and a small but decent rack. I don’t see frail and shapeless. (Please know that I respect each and every person’s personal goal- if you don’t want curves or if you like uber-skinny, I do not judge. We are all entitled to experience this journey of life the way we chose). I still see flaws and I’m still overly critical of my body, but all these healthy changes have not only improved my appearance, but it’s changed my attitude about body image. I’m happily married, my glass is always half-full, and I genuinely love life. So why are they fixated on me having a slimmer shape? Maybe it’s not about me. Maybe it’s a reflection of how they feel about themselves. I can respect that, but here’s the problem (break out the violin):

I’m lonely and I’m isolated. I don’t work full-time at any one place anymore and I do a lot of freelance work as a personal assistant for several different places. I also know people with catering, landscaping and event planning businesses so I jump around from place to place, never really getting involved in workplace politics. I love not being a part of the drama but I’m viewed as more of a transient worker- not really part of the team.

I’m on the fringe, the outskirts of the social world. A lot of my personal growth has stemmed from my transition from being in the middle of the madness to becoming the observer. Yes, I’m one of those existentialist, follow your bliss, always trying to find meaning of life kind of gal. I’m not a loner and I’m not introverted. I actually love being around people and long for stimulating conversations and meaningful friendships.

This time alone has given me great personal strength and a new found confidence, but there have been a lot of sacrifices. I don’t have any lifelong friends and those that are sort of close to me now don’t really know me. As much as I want to engage in social circles and be part of a community, I have not found the right place yet. My intuition tells me that I have more to learn as the observer and that the isolation and sacrifices keep me humble, and help me to appreciate life as well as gain perspective about others.

I could go on but I fear losing your attention so the point is this: I have limited social interaction so when I get blindsided by a remark that makes me uncomfortable (i.e., someone saying I’m too skinny and implying a problem), I don’t have anyone jumping to my defense at work. Yes, I look a lot skinnier at 125 than 135 but anyone who sees me in a bikini or yoga gear doesn’t think I’m too skinny. People at work see me fully clothed but what I hear is that I’m being told that I look bad. That I look unhealthy. For some reason, that makes me feel unwanted and ostracized.

And since I haven’t been to yoga in over a month due to working out of town without a car, I don’t get my semi-regular dose of yoga people commending me for my healthy body. I love it when new people come up to me and ask how I got into shape. I’m aware that women who are overweight are often embarrassed and intimidated by skinny girls in the workout place but I am a kind person and easy to talk to. It means a lot to me that they ask my advice and thank me for my input and tell me that I’m inspiring.

I haven’t heard that in a long time. For some reason, outside of yoga, some people think that the only way I could maintain this size is through restriction or purging or abusing a diet aid. Again, no judgment as I am not straight-edge (I drink, smoke a little green, and love to have a great time once in a while). If I hadn't found something that worked for me (mainly yoga), I would resort to other means as there is a great amount of pressure to be perfect and people are so judgmental. I know how I got to this place and so does my husband, and that should be enough. But it would be nice to be complimented for my discipline rather than looked upon as suspect of unhealthy practices. And plus, if I was in need of help, wouldn't it be more effective to express concern through kind words or be sympathetic if I were really in trouble?

They’re all fucking hypocrites, anyway. Even if I did chose other ways, less healthy ways to achieve a slimmer body, who are they to point fingers? I know plenty of “responsible adults” who use recreational drugs and abuse prescription medication, drink in excess and drive under the influence. For them to scold me as if I’m a little girl trying to get attention by starving myself is ludicrous. How about I give you a little dose of unsolicited advice? Yeah? OK. Here it goes:

  • To the person who told me to eat a sandwich, stop cheating on your wife and spend time with your new baby.
  • To the guy who hugs me just to see if he can feel my spine, lay of the pain pills and alcohol you so proudly brag about abusing on the weekend.

  • And to the girl I barely know at work, I’m not competing with you to be the skinniest girl there. We’re totally different body types. Plus, I’m at least 12 years older than you. It seems like you intentionally exclude me from lunch invites and social work breaks and I can’t help but notice that you roll your eyes every time someone mentions my weight (compliment or other). What happened to female solidarity? What happened to saying “great job for being almost 40 and looking great”? You don’t have to like me, little girl, but your attitude and personality sucks.

Wow! That felt good. Thanks again, Moonlight Mistress. It may be a full moon tonight but you’re the one that brought out my inner warrior and got me to speak my mind. So, when I look at that beautiful yellow rock tonight, I’ll say a toast to you, MLM, and to all the other bloggers who have inspired me to be proud and vocal. I may not know you guys personally, but I feel much comfort in knowing that somewhere out there, there are others like me. It keeps me going and reminds me to never become jaded as I might miss out on finding my own Moonlight Mistress and best friend.

Saturday, April 16, 2011

Weight & Nutrition Update Plus Mini-Goal

For the past month, I've maintained an average daily weight of 126.5 lbs and my weight has stayed under 132 for over 4 months. In fact, I've kept my weight under 135 since July of 2010. I feel pretty good about that and it seems I've been able to stick to a few new good habits. My eating habits have fluctuated and I haven't been as healthy as I'd like, but I seem to jump back on track fairly well.

My Current Weight and Measurements* (April 16th):

126.3 lbs
25.5 in. waist / 36.5 in. hips / 20.25 in. thighs

*I replaced my old tape measure which seemed to have stretched a little and I also try to keep my body natural and not suck it in so much while measuring (but I still do, of course).

Random Notes About My Nutrition and Eating Habits:

1. No counting calories because of this simple formula that seems to apply to me:

Counting Calories + Obsessive Traits = Overeating and Possible Weight Gain

I can glance at most dishes and accurately approximate the calories and I don't ignore caloric intake. I could probably estimate my daily count but then I'd just want to be completely accurate and thus begins the circle of obsession that sucks up my time and energy and somehow Jedi-mind tricks me into eating more. If I focus on knowing what I need to eat and not on what I can't eat, I fare better over all.

2. Freshly juiced fruits and vegetables- I average 2-4 servings a day (most days)
(I try to use a variety of fruits and vegetables but my favorites are apples, carrot, ginger, cucumber, spinach, parsley, kale, strawberries, and blueberries)

3. No Soda and No Caffeine- I cheat once in a while but I'm no longer addicted

4. Foods I'm currently trying to incorporate into my daily (or semi-daily) diet:
  • brown rice
  • broccoli
  • spinach
  • sweet potatoes
  • avocados
  • whole grains
  • organic eggs (with omega-3)
  • fresh fish
  • coconut water
Once I've added a few more items to my daily menu, I'll begin to explore recipes and additional foods to add variety and maximum nutritional benefits.

My Next Goal

I'm happy with my weight but I'd like to set my next goal as maintaining a weight of 123-125 lbs. I'd like to get down to this range by next Friday since I have an event to attend but I'll cut myself some slack if I end of maintaining (it's that time of the month, so I need to be realistic). I want to try to maintain this weight for at least a couple of weeks before exploring the 120-123 range. I'll post pics and ask for kind but honest input.

Not only do I want to look great weight wise, I want my skin and overall appearance to radiate "HEALTHY" (yet skinny). There are a few people, not many, that seem determined to mention my weight whenever they see me. I'm too skinny, according to them, but they're out of line as this is happening in the work place. I think they believe they're paying me a compliment but to me they're insinuating I have a health/mental problem. I'm not going to hash this out AGAIN, but it's embarrassing and I'm NOT UNDERWEIGHT (fucking drives me insane).

It they're truly concerned, then pull me aside. I'm an adult. Or better yet, call my husband. I'm sure he'll be thrilled to speak to another guy giving input on his wife's weight (for the record, my husband loves the way I look and it doesn't matter if I'm 115 or 145- he seems to think I'm beautiful and perfect). I'm a lucky woman because of him. He drives me crazy some times but we're always on the same team and we have a mutual respect for one anther.

I guess I threw in a rant at the end of the post. Oh, well. That's all for now but I'll be back shortly, I'm sure.

Cheers to all!!!

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Amelia, Stop Trying to Be So Fucking Perfect

My Mini-Mission Statement

I sincerely want to make a habit out of posting regularly but one of my obsessive perfectionist traits stems from the educational system of my generation. For those of you in your 30’s or older, you might know exactly what I’m talking about. I’m not excluding nor am I making a jab at those that are younger as this is not a statement of judgment or superiority. I’m just aware of many of the changes in the educational system, as well as the use of spontaneous communication through technology which would be greatly impeded if everyone strictly followed “all things grammar”. Basically, some of the old school rules are obsolete and antiquated. I still believe that there needs to be some adherence to proper use of a language, but I do not judge others, especially in a forum that is meant to inspire creative thinking and an organic stream of consciousness expressed freely and unedited.

During my grade school and college years, grammar, spelling and writing composition were of primary importance in all disciplines and studies. All of these elements were seen as paramount for effective communication and vital to the preservation of recording history. We were indirectly taught to judge one’s intelligence and level of education by their ability to communicate (both written and oral). As I always wanted to avoid being mocked or ridiculed in the classroom, I obsessed over these rules and they’ve stuck with me for life. For the most part, it serves me well as I can write a stellar resume or cover letter, and my communication skills on a technical level have helped me in the workplace (but not necessarily in large social circles). The real drawback is that in blogging, I’m sure I come across as overly rehearsed and censored. I’d like to come across as the genuine and creative person that I am, but since there is also a need for anonymity in blogging, the editing becomes a bit tedious and extremely time consuming because I can’t stop editing my grammar and choice of words.

There must be a way for me to break free from this and it should serve as a metaphor for other aspects of my life- imperfections are what make us so perfectly unique and wonderfully human.

**So, for those of you who can’t relate and wish I’d end this diatribe; take heart, as I will make a constant effort to allow myself to be less censored and to give myself permission to not obsess over finding the perfect words for the perfect sentence for the perfect paragraph with the perfect title.

And to those of you who remember all too well the Dewey Decimal System, diagramming sentences and being subjected to the harsh red writing coded by the ultimate grammar book of hell, The Harbrace Handbook, I believe that a happy medium exists between effective grammar and spontaneous writing without the breakdown of communication.

So, this entry is more of a statement, a mini-mission statement . I started this blog to help me let go of some of my fears as well as to communicate my ideas freely. One of my missions is to break free from perfectionist thinking and to embrace a freer form of writing. I assume others will fixate on my errors or judge me for my incoherent sentence structure but I’m fully aware that this type of thinking serves no purpose, especially not here- a place we come to seek out honest words and uncensored thoughts. So I will make a conscious effort to embrace this mission as I continue with this blog. I do this primarily for myself, but also for any of you who chose to read my blog. I don’t want my blog to come across as censored and sterilized because that is not who I am.

So, Cheers to everyone and here’s to letting go and stop trying to be SO FUCKING PERFECT.