brightrosefox: (Default)
Anyway, I must say that we adopted a kitten a couple of days ago. She's a brown tabby domestic shorthair with Egyptian Mau markings and Abyssinian ears. They had named her Willow. We've named her Callisto. Adam and I had originally gone to the new local shelter still being built, saw that it was not open, and abruptly decided to go to the shelter in Rockville, just to look. Hah. We walked through all the cat rooms. Just to look.
She was in the very last room, the sick room, and we reached for each other physically and psychically, and I knew. She was already spayed and given vaccinations, so all we need to do is take her to a vet with a free coupon.

Callisto will never replace Rose. She will help heal the burning hollow emptiness.



























She is small, long, and tall. She adores curling up on a lap and suckling on a shirt whilst kneading and purring. She loves rubbing against people, mewing for love, and playing with toys.
Luna and Jupiter have actually been fairly okay with this. They've both touched noses with Callisto - Luna smacked her and Jupiter has hissed at her several times, but this will take many days. Hopefully by next week things will have settled down and sorted out.

All I know is that I am in love, and so is my husband.

brightrosefox: (Default)
Seizure happened in the kitchen. Jupiter meowed and rubbed against me while I crouched. Adam came in and gently lay me on the floor. My eyes were open and blank. Adam touched my face and reached for my mind, and I spasmed and gasped and blinked. I asked why I was on the floor. Adam helped me up and stood me against the large freezer. My memory is swirling. Alicia is holding me. Earlier, Adam said he told his boss, a fellow animal lover, that he needed an extra day to care for his wife. I rolled my eyes and said that was not necessary; that I was fine. Never mind. It was so dark and so white equally braided as order and chaos magics. I was spinning at ninety-nine percent light speed and thirty-five miles an hour. The world was elsewhere. A few seconds lasted a thousand years. Adam suggested I go upstairs and rest. Jupiter is suggesting a cuddle. I am thinking coffee and clonazepam and baclofen. I am made of light and love and pure order-chaos magic in its simplest form. I can give myself the right strength. May be that I can regenerate. As brightly and intensely as a Time Lord. I always shine enough for everyone.

brightrosefox: (Default)
Since I am still in shock, I feel like I'm moving through the Kubler-Ross stages of grief completely out of order. I've accepted that Rose is dead and I am deeply depressed. While I held her waiting for Adam, I knew she was dying and I was already angry and bargaining. When the vet said she was critical, I accepted and realized she was probably going to die. When she coded and they couldn't revive her, I accepted and understood, then went right on to bargaining again, blaming myself and how I just kept waiting. It became anger, wondering how the fuck a five-year old cat with a clean bill of health could suddenly present with congestive heart failure and die so quickly. I became angry that we hadn't figured it might be genetic. I became depressed that I couldn't have known. I still blamed myself for not finding a way to take her to the clinic sooner.
When we held her body, I went through acceptance and depression again, followed by deep gratefulness that at least she waited until Adam came home, that Adam got to hold her, that she knew how much we loved her. Depression again. Acceptance.
No denial. Slight isolation.
I updated Facebook right there in the clinic's comfort room, since in this age of instant communication it was much faster than a sobbing phone chain. We finished holding Rose and signed the private cremation form. We walked to the car. My best friend Beca called and all I could hear was her screams, and I cried. She and her husband James came over with food: Whole rotisserie chickens that I ripped into because I hadn't eaten all day. Alcohol because it helped dull the pain. Being a doctor, she commanded that I keep taking Klonopin, as well as baclofen, two to three times a day just to keep my mind and body from shattering.
I realized how desperately I needed them there, and she knew it, and late that night she brought me to bed, fed me my drugs, and climbed into bed with me. Adam was downstairs on the couch with James.
I clung to my plushie ginger tabby Haiku all night. Beca and James left early this morning, and Adam came up to sleep with me. I woke up and instinctively reached behind my head to the soft pillow where Rose would be sprawled out, and I made a soft whimper of intense pain, because she wasn't there.
And Jupiter has been meowing, softly. Meowing and meowing. I don't know how much he understands yet. Luna has been so quiet, but always there, always ready for a hug. It's only been a day. I've only shed a few tears. The real grieving hasn't begun.
People are gently discussing taking me across the street to the new shelter on Solstice or after Christmas, to let me adopt a cat. Others have suggested waiting a few months. I cannot wait. Because I don't believe in waiting for too long. My heart cannot take it. I cannot spent months mourning and empty when a pet dies, otherwise I may lose my mind. See... After Tuesday died in November 2006, I spent four agonizing months with a growing, burning, echoing hole inside me, until I begged Adam to take me to the old shelter on Rothgeb just to look, just to see... and that was where Luna stole my heart and filled my soul. And one year later, my other best friend Charlotte begged us to come see her former coworker's new litter of five female gingers, and Adam picked up one, looked into those wide bright sunny eyes, and announced she was coming home. And Rose took our hearts and ran.
I never expected the baby of the family to be the first to die.
I think we will always be a three-cat house now.
I want and do not want isolation. I don't want platitudes. I am completely fine with "I'm so sorry for your loss" - as "sorry" is shorthand for "sorrowful" and it helps me to know that others feel the loss and mourn with me. But I am depressed. And I don't know what to say.
We have been getting so many phone calls and messages.
She was only five years old. I guess it was genetic. She was so young.

Now, her soul resides in the gold-cream clay sculpture Adam had made in her likeness months ago. Adam absorbed her energy, stored it, released it, and made sure she would stay with us.









The house of Rose's soul.
Oh sweet Bast, please love Rose and care for her. Give her sweet cuddles and nuzzles and kisses. And give her as many treats as she wants.
With Adam Paul´╗┐, the sculptor.
brightrosefox: (Default)
I'm too much in shock and too tired, so I am copying from Facebook.

Yesterday Part 1.
I don't think I'm having a nightmare. But if I am, I just want to do something to make Rose stop panting rapidly and lethargically with wide pupils and mild legarthy. It is four in the morning. I have no car. I could call a taxi service to take us to the Nebel Street emergency clinic but I can't think straight. Maybe she is having a cat anxiety attack. Maybe it's nothing. Maybe it's nothing. I will stay awake for her. I will offer her treats. I will remain calm because Klonopin is in me and I cannot panic. She is letting me cuddle her. Maybe it's nothing. I need it to be nothing. It's four in the morning and I can't drive and I can't find a carrier and vets don't make house calls. I need this to be nothing. Bast, please let Rose be fine. I will stay awake.

Yesterday Part 2.
Okay. Rose is okay. I mean... well, she did turn down Greenies, which never happens, which means she may not be hungry or is just very tired. When I pressed my ear to her side, I didn't hear anything unusual, just breathing and purring. But she also turned down water and food, which makes me concerned. Her nose is dark... is that a thing? I mean, it's not that 'normal' bright pink flush. She is also acting physically weak - when I picked her up she went limp, and when I put her on the dresser with the food and water bowls she looked almost depressed. She then jumped off and lay on the floor and mewed. I think it's allergies or maybe the start of a cold. She is absolutely lethargic. There isn't much I can do right now - I don't want to rush her to a vet right now just out of worry. She's breathing fine. Adam won't be home until tomorrow, though.

Today Part 1.
As soon as Adam gets home we are rushing Rose to the VCA emergency clinic on Perry Parkway. FYI. Her breathing troubles are much worse.

Today Part 2.
Rose Sunshine Paul.
Time of death: 2:20 PM December 14 2013. VCA Veterinary Referral Associates.
My cat died of heart failure caused by liquid around the heart and lungs.

Today Part 3.
Rose Sunshine Paul.
April 2008 to December 2013. Confirmed cause of death: fluid around the heart and lungs. Heart attack and shock.

At the Gaithersburg VCA Veterinary Referral Associates, the closest pet emergency hospital, the one we have been going to for years since its Darnestown location... they called in every single doctor and nurse into the ICU since Rose was already severely critical. They did everything possible to stabilize her even through the Code Blue. A dozen veterinary specialists for one little cat. They spent 15 minutes on resuscitation. Dr. Marc led us to the comfort room and said there was nothing else to ben done. Let me stress that every single doctor was in that room working to save our cat.
We opted for a private cremation. Just like Tuesday and Ralph and Puff, with polished wood boxes and name plates and clay discs with paw prints. These people were wonderful.
Rose died knowing she was dearly loved. She knew how intensely we cherished her. She loved us with every part of her soul. We were tribe.

Adam and I held her in the towels and hugged her body, and Adam absorbed her soul. At home, he transferred Rose to the sculpture he had made, with gold and cream paint. Rose as a soul will always be with us.





Read more... )
brightrosefox: (Default)
Oh, hey, my long lost theme song.

http://www.youtube.com/embed/Wmd60Kk9Ljk

Gracefully she's circling higher
She has the wind beneath her wings
And looks down on us, she said

Robbed of my innocence
Had no more time to play
I sure got my feathers burned
But I'm stronger than the flames

Here she comes, here she comes
I've been waiting for so long
Here she comes, rose again from the flames
My little phoenix

Eternity is set in her eyes
Throwing sparks back at the world
That'll never die and I think

She was robbed of her innocence
Had no more time to play
She's only a little girl
But she's stronger than the flames

Here she comes, here she comes
I've been waiting for so long
Here she comes, rose again from the flames
My little phoenix

Here she comes, I've been waiting
For my little phoenix

You've got to get close to the flame
To see what it's made of
You've got to get close to the flame
To see what you are made of

Here she comes, here she comes
I've been waiting for so long
Here she comes, rose again from the flames
My little phoenix

***

This reminds me, fascinatingly, of chronic pain, invisible illness, mental illness, disability, and the struggles of marginalization for a bodymind that is full of monsters.

http://www.youtube.com/embed/yxPMc-XWOZ8

Phantom voices with no words to follow
At the mercy of the cold and hollow
I withdrew into my sanctuary of silence
My defense

In this moment I am just becoming
Liberated from my cell of nothing
No sensation there was only breathing
Overcome oblivion

Falling Awake
From a walking sleep
And all that remains
Is the dying memory
And now I can dive for
These dreams I make
Like I am Falling
I am falling awake

Waves of melodies once forgotten
Like a symphony across the ocean
Never knew that they could hear my calling
Deep within
Crashing in
Rushing in
Like falling

Falling Awake
From a walking sleep
And all that remains
Is the dying memory
And now I can dive for
These dreams I make
Like I am Falling
I am falling awake

There is no returning to that emptiness,
Loneliness
The dream that lives inside of me
Won't fade away, it's wide awake

Falling Awake
From a walking sleep
And all that remains
Is the dying memory
And now I can dive for
These dreams I make
Like I am Falling
I am falling awake

***

And this one, same thing:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vdG3ECUC-mE

Whenever I wake up
I'm lost and always afraid
It's never the same place
I close my eyes to escape
The walls around me

And I drift away
Inside the silence
Overtakes the Pain
In my dreams

I feel Immortal
I am not scared
No, I am not scared
I feel immortal
When I am there
When I am there

Whenever I wake up
The shards of us cut within
Always the same day
Frozen all in the fringe
I surrender to the sleep
And leave the hurt behind me
There's no death to fear
In my dreams

I feel Immortal
I am not scared
No, I am not scared
I feel immortal
When I am there
When I am there

So far or right beside me
So close but they can't find me
Slowly, time forgets me
I'm lonely, only dreaming

I feel Immortal
I am not scared
No, I am not scared
I feel immortal
When I am there
When I am there

***

And for my new friends in disability and invisible illness, I present my number one theme song.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SJnCHctOeJg

Smash glass against the wall
Curse the music on the radio that the neighbours play.
Door slams, she turns her head
Watches through the window as he pulls away
Funny how your racing brain drives you so mad
When all the while you feel so numb
Too old to be clean far too young to be broken
Like an army we come

Cut back, left behind
I watched you self-destructing oh so many times
Shot down, once again
Sitting in a chair crying what am I going to do with my life?
Just learn to hide the way that you really feel
Never let them know that you're scared
But understand that you're not the special only one
Watch us now, watch us real close

How we all dance with this fire 'cause it's all that we know
And as the spotlight turns toward us, we all try our best to show
We are lost we are freaks, we are crippled, we are weak
We are the heirs, we are the true heirs, to all the world

Let's go build a fire down on the empty beach when the waves are crashing high
White heat purify, as the sparks fly up into the great black sky
Sacrifice these crutches to the crackling flames
Stand as silhouettes against the dawn
It's far too late to try to sleep now, seems I'm never tired any more

I want to dance with this fire 'cause it's all that I know
We are lost we are freaks
And we try our best to show
I am lost
I'm a freak ha ha.

***

Depression Monster is still wrapped around me, steel claws and silver grin, but I am fighting and fighting, and I have many spears.

Husband returned from New Orleans around one-thirty this morning. Rose and Jupiter immediately climbed on him and we all fell asleep in a snuggling pile.
Later today, errands! Petco Unleashed with coupons for Blue food and litter. Trader Joe's for cookies, whole milk yogurt, chocolate hemp powder, trail mix, pumpkin cereal bars, fairytale pumpkins. Dollar Store for calendars. H-Mart for produce and foods from outside North America.
Had a lovely chat near the with from a guy who was from Jamaica, who extolled the virtues of awesome iron-rich burro bananas and said that his grandmother, who ate them every day on The Island, was 130. She probably did lots of things. The man himself looked barely 40 but he could have been 50. I asked him which bunches of burro bananas looked best. Yay, snacks.
And we got a pure honey nut spread, roasted seaweed snack packs, tamarind paste, demerara sugar (4 lbs for under 5 bucks), black plums, pomegranates, red leaf lettuce, and stuff I forget now.
I have taken more medication to ease this pain, I have meditated with cartoon comedy to beat back the Depression Monster, and I now will get back to writing.
brightrosefox: (Default)
I must quote this, because it struck me deeply and knocked me over and stunned me and amazed me.

*****
From: [livejournal.com profile] naamah_darling.
I don't know if I can explain it, any more than I can explain why I find anyone amazing, but you're open about what you are and what you are going through. You don't expend energy trying to be normal, and you never seem to even want to. You aren't afraid of what you ARE, even when the things that HAPPEN, sometimes because of things that you are, are scary. You seem sometimes scared of things that happen or that you (body/chemistry) do to you, but not scared of yourself, really. You're fierce. You're . . . we don't have a word for it. The way in which children and animals are alike, that we *call* innocence, but isn't innocence, it's just a kind of transparency and guilelessness-without-cluelessness. You're contradictory, and this isn't a problem. You've imposed . . . not order . . . but some sort of reason and meaning and story on the chaos in your life, and you have made beautiful things out of it inside you. You persist. You change, you are not destroyed. You're mercurial, joyful in the sense of being flat-out at everything you feel and not in the sense of being always happy, you're generous, you're very kind, you're forgiving. You aren't afraid to spend a lot of time working with and understanding yourself, because you know that is important. You are more people than just-the-one-you you. You are comfortable working with shape and meaning and color, when words aren't good enough. Whole parts of you are indescribable. You're a *good person*, while still being strong and fierce, and that is overwhelmingly obvious to anyone with half a synapse. You belong in fairy tales, like so many of the rest of us, writing better endings. You're kind of amazing.

And tangentially, THAT is why when people are all like "disabled people are so inspirational!" I get kinda pissed on the grounds of "THESE PEOPLE THAT I KNOW, they are SO MUCH MORE than a stepping stone for your ego or a friendly reassurance that hey, if those people can manage to get themselves to a beach/a gym/on a horse, you have a good chance of not being an utter asshole failure your entire life, and accomplishing REALLY important things!" and at the same time am like "No, really, we ARE inspirational; you have no fucking idea how 'inspirational' the disabled folks I know are . . . and if you had one iota of their self-awareness you might not be saying such asinine crap."
You want to find disabled people "inspirational?" I'll accept that . . . if what you are finding "inspirational" is their honesty in speaking out and sharing their opinions, their desire to help others, their weapons-grade swearing vocabulary (so many disabled people I know HAVE THAT, it's glorious), their ability to incorporate something literally disabling into their self-image and life when our culture gives them limited scripts and limited opportunities, their persistence in navigating the obstacles placed in front of them not by what they are, but by how our culture and the many dickheads in it unwittingly and often VERY DELIBERATELY make it harder to do so, the fact that they are often poor as dirt but are the most generous people you will ever meet, that they have known pain and so they often know great compassion.

*THAT* SHIT IS INSPIRATIONAL.

So is persistence, yes, which is why I am always impressed when I see someone who has had to deal with major issues accomplish something that is made particularly difficult BY those issues SPECIFICALLY, but when that sort of thing is nearly always ONLY praised in the context of visible, physical disability, or when it's some completely unrelated shit, that pisses me off.

It's like . . . people are apparently impressed by when disabled people do anything *while smiling*, because that indicates the triumph of overcoming our miserable existence? Or that we have a good enough attitude to forget, for a moment, that we are fucked up and are supposed to be miserable constantly? I don't even KNOW. But these same people aren't finding me inspirational when I'm at my blackest and am hanging on by my last claw, which is arguably when I am being my MOST BADASS. That's when I need to be pulling up my bootstraps and thinking my way out of it with sunshine and baby kisses. But an ungroomed, exhausted, surrounded by laundry, not moving, fat, blotchy, cat-strewn DEPRESSED person staring at a computer screen or TV or at nothing in particular doesn't look good in a facebook picture. "This person: probably exercising more willpower not to give up hope and eat a bullet than you will exercise at any point in your whole life. Stop. Bitching. That. Your. Yoga. Is. Hard." <---- Nobody wants that. (And, while maybe sometimes true, it's also kinda dickly, because Suck Olympics are uncool. The things that have made me most miserable sometimes do not seem to be proportional or make sense. To wit, the hour-long crying jag I had when my last pet scorpion died, years ago. Dude, I cried less painfully when my GRANDMOTHER died. What even the HELL?)

All I know is that the shit people usually talk about as being inspirational is not really very inspirational to me. Like, *if* it's true that Chris Evans really does have anxiety/panic attacks (never read reliable info about how severe his "problems with anxiety" are, though he apparently went into therapy) and he still navigated two MONSTROUS blockbuster movies and associated press events, I find that totally fucking impressive, because I KNOW WHAT THAT IS LIKE, and I know I couldn't handle it. And that's the stuff people don't seem to understand. That's the stuff people latch on to and *make fun of.* Because people who don't Get It can be real dicks about that stuff.
*****
I truly believe that if Namaah and I lived closer, we would see each other several times a week and never get tired of each other's company.
My husband once told me that everyone has multiple soulmates, that a soul can be split into many different parts. I think Namaah may be one of my soulmates. It took me five years to realize that, and that's okay. I like to take things slowly.
brightrosefox: (Default)
Why is it that, in most dreams where I am in physical danger, I am unable to scream or move quickly?
My last dream involved a bad fall and crash at the top of the stairs, while a large group of people were downstairs having a small quiet party. Something supernatural was with me, something insidious. I grabbed the stair ledge and pulled myself up to a kneeling position. I yelled my husband's name, but it was only a whisper. I couldn't call for help, not with the shadowy creature surrounding me. I was moving so slowly. It felt as though nobody was in the house but me, me and the cats.
And abruptly, I realized that nobody was in the house. Adam was at work. There was no party. The cats were all downstairs. It was only me and the shadow entity. I struggled to call on my internal resources, my spirit guardians, but even my psychic voice was muffled. I was not afraid. I was determined. I was badly injured, and I only had myself, and my powers to create weapons and defenses were drained. I stopped trying to stand. I knelt there and mouthed words, calling on the water in the bathroom, the air circulating around the house, the earth under the house, the fire downstairs used to light the gas stove. I pulled in all into me, and with a desperate burst, I unleashed it. The shadow creature shrieked and vanished.
Without any warning at all, the house filled with presence again. There was that quiet downstairs party. I whispered my husband's name again, struggling to turn it into a cry. Someone must have heard. Adam came up the stairs and found me, sagging against the door of the bathroom, my nose bleeding. He spoke to me. He half-carried me to the bedroom and helped me lie down. He brought damp towels and tissues and water with electrolytes. I managed, somehow, to tell him that a negative spirit had entered the house and stole my strength, and I pulled all the elemental power I could to drive it away. He was very proud but also puzzled, since the house was supposed to be powerfully shielded and guarded. I was crying but I didn't mean to cry. It was just a reaction without intention. He stroked my hair and curled up with me, and me took my hand and fed me energy and power and strength, and he said, "Go to sleep, my darling. I'll be monitoring you through our psychic bond and everything will be okay. I will strengthen the wards." He needed to check on our friends. He would back be up soon.
The dream ended there.

It has been something of a recurring thing: My slowness in dreams. My exquisite agony in dreams. My whispering words in dreams. Sometimes I can barely walk for the pain in my hips and knees. Sometimes I can only speak with thoughts instead of physical words. Sometimes my body is wrapped in a floating translucent shell and it is the only way I can move. In my dreams, the pain is so much worse than in reality. But I have access to weapons of all kind and I feel safe, even if something horrible grabs me.

When I was a child, I had flying dreams every night. Even astral projection. Like my father and cousins in their younger years. And if a harmful person appeared, I just waved my right hand fiercely, shouting "Shoo! Shoo!" to make then disappear.

When I was a child, I dreamed of dragons, of ancient tortoises, of unicorns mixed with white tigers, of phoenix birds with feathers of every color. Dragons have never been dangerous to me. Even if some were, there were always other dragons who were benevolent.

It is why I always bristle when I read an article comparing chronic pain to dragons. The only way I can see such battles happening is dragon against dragon. And I am a human amalgam of dragon, phoenix, tortoise, unicorn, white tiger, and fae, wrapped in the skin of a moonlight witch.

Then, why do my dreams cripple me? The only reason I can think of is to teach me to use the insides, the powers coming from my spirit and not my body. My body is very important and vital to me. But perhaps not so much in my dreams.

And I think this piece of art, beyond anything, is one of the greatest ways I can understand myself. Every time I look at it, I weep. I even have that same cane. I know Shinga and I barely know each other, but she knows chronic pain. She knows what being a warrior means. She was in the US Army and was badly injured and treated so poorly during therapy that she has severe PTSD. She is disabled badly. She knows battles. And I want to hold her and hold her and tell her what this means to me.

http://shinga.deviantart.com/art/Awaken-Warrior-and-Rise-378439320
awaken__warrior__and_rise_by_shinga-d69b9nc
(Note: Please please refer to Shinga before borrowing or using this image. Please use the Deviant Art link. This is her work. Copyright Shinga. The only reason I displayed the actual image was in case someone can't click on the link.)
brightrosefox: (Default)
http://naamah-darling.livejournal.com/623299.html
Seriously, you guys. Seriously. *points* This woman. This woman is awesome. She is AMAZING. All her custom ponies are amazing; they are fantastic, they are extraordinary.
But I think she and I can both say with total confident honesty that Serenity is the best. (Okay, the best so far. But still.) And Serenity belongs to ME, because this woman made her JUST FOR ME. As a special gift.
And she knew she was doing it even before I told her I was considering requesting a custom since they are pricey and I wanted to save up money. And there she was smirking and giggling smugly because I had no idea, and then I got Serenity in the mail and I cried and sobbed so hard because the happiness and joy was overwhelming.
And now Serenity is literally imbued with my magic, and I love her more than any toy I have received in my adult life...
And seriously, people, you should seriously consider Namaah's ponies. She is absolutely incredible.
But Serenity is still the best. Truth. *nods*
https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.10151406320840684.1073741827.640545683&type=1

And still, whenever I feel anxious and upset and depressed, I just touch the lotus bud symbol on her forehead, and I actually honestly feel better.

Edited to add:

Serenity the pony called to me, so decided to take a photo to show how much I adore her.

I have not loved a toy so much since I was a teenager. I cannot thank [livejournal.com profile] naamah_darling enough for creating and naming this pony just for me. This may be one of the most perfect toy gifts I have gotten in my adult life.

Serenity has been charged and imbued with as much personal magic energies as I could give her. She is now a method of helping me work with physical, emotional, and psychic self stimming in a weird way.
I talk to her during episodes of anxiety and depression; I kiss the lotus bud blaze on her forehead when I say goodnight. I brush her hair with wood combs and boar brushes. It relaxes me.

She soothes my brain and centers my mind in ways I cannot explain. She is a toy, custom made... but she is special beyond description.





It doesn't matter how old or young you are. There will always be some sort of toy or physical object that represents something important, something life-like or abstract or surreal, that you bond to deeply.
brightrosefox: (Default)
So, a couple of months ago, I was chatting with [livejournal.com profile] naamah_darling about her fabulous custom made My Little Pony dolls, which she paints herself with her own designs and even new hair. She sells them on Ebay for reasonably understandably high prices, because they are really extraordinary and unique.
I casually mentioned that one day, when I could afford it, I'd love a custom pony for myself. The matter was dropped.
And then a week or so ago, on Facebook, Naamah mentioned on Facebook that she was sending me a package. Since I've been sending her care packages full of skin care and supplements, I figured it was something similar, like a thank you. I didn't realize how anxious and excited she seemed about my receiving the package.

A couple of days ago, the box arrived. I opened it up and found the card first, with a glittery dragonfly on the cover. I opened it and on the left it read:

"Funny you should talk about a custom..."
And my heart kind of skipped.
And on the right it read:
"It took me a while to figure out her name, but it turned out to be so simple once she told me.
Serenity.
I made her thinking of you start to finish. She's all yours. She'll be a friend who can always be there for you and remind you that you are never alone.
Hope you love her. <3"

And even before I pulled away the paper wrappings, I was crying. And when I had the pony in my hands, and I saw her flank symbol, I cried even harder, murmuring "Oh my gods, oh my gods, she did this for me, she made this for me, oh my gods, this is amazing, this is so beautiful, oh oh oh..."

Because I had seen a photo, on Naamah's Livejournal, months ago, of this pony being painted, and I had instantly been pulled toward it, wishing it could be mine...
And here she is.
Meet Serenity.
https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.10151406320840684.1073741827.640545683&type=1

Every morning, I look directly at her when I wake up, and she makes me smile. It is a wonderful, beautiful thing. Honestly, I don't think I can express it in words. Just... incredible. Love you, Naamah.
brightrosefox: (Default)
I am Blue and Green and Purple. Why, I don't know. I just am.
http://www.crystalvaults.com/crystal-encyclopedia/amazonite
http://www.crystalvaults.com/crystal-encyclopedia/labradorite
http://www.crystalvaults.com/crystal-encyclopedia/charoite
http://www.crystalvaults.com/crystal-encyclopedia/kyanite
http://www.crystalvaults.com/crystal-encyclopedia/jade

1. Oh my various gods, this is such a lovely green.
2. Gemstone dictionary. I love it.
3. This actually works. I am wearing it now next to amber. It is amazing.
http://gemstone-dictionary.com/amazonite.php

Also, my absolute favorite shade of green. Also, powerful as power healing, kind of like Reiki...
http://psychicwomenwarriors.blogspot.com/2009/05/seraphinite-higher-vibrational-feminine.html

Current jewelry:

Right wrist: Labradorite, multi-color raw amber, fluorite (clear, green, blue, purple, pink), lilac lepidolite with eternity symbol charm.
Left wrist: Labradorite, lemon raw amber, honey raw amber, purple lepidolite, multi-color tourmaline, blue kyanite, charoite.
Right hand: Engagement ring (rose gold, heirloom white diamond in white gold bezel setting, three blue diamonds on each side, raised channel setting with rose gold pave. Charoite with seraphinite side stones. Seraphinite with charoite side stones.
Left hand: Wedding ring (Green Gold. Celtic eternity/healing knot with triquetra symbols on each side; extremely similar to the Auryn symbol in the movie version of The NeverEnding Story.) Heirloom plain thin gold band. Amber flanked with Bali beads. Charoite flanked with Bali beads. Amazonite flanked with Bali beads.










I don't know why I feel weirdly defensive when people ask me why I wear "so much jewelry" - I mean, it's about healing, and strength, and serenity, and power... and yes, OCD. But mostly about power.

I mean, gemstones do have power. Amber is genuinely healing; there have been studies. Same with lepidolite. Labradorite has been discovered in meteorites. Tourmaline has been shown to help shield from electromagnetic radiation. Wearing green jade has brought luck. And most psychically sensitive people have been able to feel intense energies and auras radiating from various rocks and minerals. They're never just "pretty rocks" to me. But if that is what it takes to convince people, I will nod and smile and say "pretty rocks."
brightrosefox: (Default)
Oh, and we made our usual cookies with chocolate chips and goji berries, but with this batch we added moringa powder and bee pollen. It didn't change the taste but it it increased the superpower food power.

Note for self. Yup, the Biotin and Inositol supplements are working beautifully. My hair is almost down to my bra strap. My plan is to grow it close to my waist by this time next year. 20,000 mcg Biotin plus 1300 mg Inositol, every day. Also, the Inositol helps with anxiety attacks and the Biotin helps with cellular growth. Adding in Sea Buckthorn and Moringa is doing so many wonderful things for my skin, especially the eczema, xeroderma, itching, redness, flakiness, and sensitivity.

OMG, you guys... Inositol plus Passionflower does unbelievable things to anxiety attacks, for me anyway. I am so relieved. I can breathe, oh yes.

I truly don't care what anyone says. The proper pharmaceutical drugs in the proper dosages in the proper combinations help me feel as wonderful and painless and fantastic as I possibly can for a few blessed hours in a body and brain that will never feel that thing most people call "normal". Close enough.

Dear polytheists: How many of you are hard, how many of you are soft, and how many of you are medium?
See, I consider myself a medium polytheist. To me, gods and other deities have separate individual personalities, but still all connect to one massive incomprehensible source from which all gods are born.
(I once had a discussion about this with a monotheist who kept trying to call that source "
God" even though I tried to explain that in my mind, the monotheistic god is included in the billions of deities connected to that source. The universe is bigger than any god anywhere, anyway, and also prettier.)
Neil Gaiman made a good point in "American Gods" - that there are various incarnations of every god all over the world and throughout time and space.
So, in the book I've been writing, the specific incarnation of Gaia that the protagonists meet is also connected to modern incarnations of other goddesses from other pantheons. I'm wondering if I can fit quantum theory into all this.

I have this natural habit: whenever someone verbally attacks me, I just smile, nod, and say "Okay!" It drives them crazy. It is hard to fight calm. Apparently, it is one of my strengths. I just don't have the energy or time to argue.

"She walks in beauty, like the night
Of cloudless climes and starry skies;
And all that's best of dark and bright
Meet in her aspect and her eyes:
Thus mellow'd to that tender light
Which heaven to gaudy day denies.
One shade the more, one ray the less,
Had half impaired the nameless grace
Which waves in every raven tress,
Or softly lightens o'er her face;
Where thoughts serenely sweet express
How pure, how dear their dwelling-place.
And on that cheek, and o'er that brow,
So soft, so calm, yet eloquent,
The smiles that win, the tints that glow,
But tell of days in goodness spent,
A mind at peace with all below,
A heart whose love is innocent!"
A fellow witch once quoted this at me, about me. I smiled and thanked him and felt quite happy. But even now, years later, I still don't believe in my real self...

I want to be this...

butterfly-into-blue-sky
brightrosefox: (Default)
Today is a day of deep, deep depression, fatigue, and chronic pain so endless that the abyss is right in my face grinning. Everything is a Cheshire cat.

I have been forming this post in my head since yesterday morning, when I woke up with nothing working properly, with only bits of my brain and body truly functional, and I had to put on a mask and a whole costume, I had to grip my spears and even a sword for dear life, I had to smile and pretend to shine because I refused to worry anyone, because I didn't want to sink further.

And people tend to get tired of me constantly talking about my pains and feelings, because whoa, can't I talk about happy things, things that maybe don't involve medicine and coping mechanisms and feelings?
But here is the Big Thing: So many people feel this way. So many dear friends will read this and understand and perhaps comment and know they have someone to help them stand and fight.
And that is the other Big Thing. We do need help. We do need to stand with each other and fight. On the internet and in life, there are people who will say we are faking, that we are pill addicts, that we are attention whores, that we are crazy.

I will stand up and say, No, I am not faking, nor a pill addict, nor do I desire attention. But crazy? Yes. Yes, I am crazy. Yes, I need help. I am getting help. Medications. Therapy. Exercise. Nutrition. Supplements. Herbs. Vitamins. Holistics. I am not afraid to tell you what is happening, because you need to hear it, you who would mock and tease and bully and tell me to "Just slap a Band-Aid on it and walk it off, just exercise and feel better, just eat this food for two weeks without any drugs, just smile a lot, oh hey, I felt sad yesterday and then I got over it, I know how you feel, I wrenched my ankle last week and wrapped it up and now I feel better, I know how you feel, maybe you're just pretending, why don't you just get better? Quit talking about how much you hurt, everybody hurts, it could be worse."
It could be worse, yes oh yes. Ohhh, sweethearts, it could be so much worse. Yes.
Here, let us try something: You can have my body for a while. You can feel every single feeling I feel, think every thought I think, know every pain I know. See how it feels. No? You can't? Really? Are you sure? Still no? Oh, dear. Well, then, I suppose we will have to stop associating, even if we have only been talking via a forum, a community, a social network, a bus stop, a party, via phone, via web video, in a store, in a house. Oh, well. I thought maybe you had enough compassion, or, you know, empathy. I guess I won't find out. But you know what? If it ever happens to you - and part of me hopes it won't and part of me hopes it will - I shall still stand with you even if you hurt me, because warriors stand up.

There are beautiful, wonderful, incredible, amazing, extraordinary, fantastic people who are being slowly devastated, crippled, destroyed by their own bodies' various systems, for no true reason other than they just happen to live in those bodies. Some of them think about how horrible they are, how they are useless, worthless, pointless, draining, a burden to everyone around them. I feel that way quite a bit. There are some who want to harm themselves, some who want to kill themselves. I cannot do that, but I admit I have imagined it. If I truly wanted to harm myself, I would stop taking my medications. I would let all the pain crash over me in one single tsunami with wave after wave, while I spasm and shake and seize and sob and scream and shiver because I refuse to give myself relief, because I refuse to make it stop. But I will not do that. I can not do that. It would destroy everyone who loves me, whom I love. And I know that. That is another Big Thing.

To everyone reading this who feels the same way: I love you. You are loved. You will always be loved. You are extraordinary. You are amazing. You are fantastic. You are beautiful in so many ways. I love you. I will stand up with you. I will give you spears, swords, shields. I will show you how to scream a battle cry loud enough to make the gods hear you. I will show you how to launch into battle with these monsters. We will never win the war. We will often retreat covered in blood and darkness, growling and licking our wounds and crouching together to patch up each other's wounds.
I will take you by the hand and lead you outside. We will stare up at the sky and say, "Oh, this is such a beautiful sky." The sky may not look beautiful. The sky may be full of dark storm clouds and we cannot see the sun. But just because there is a storm does not mean that the sky has gone away. The clouds and the dark will move, and we will see the bright, bright sky, all shades of blue, and we will see the sun, gazing upon us like the eye of a god, giving us light and warmth and strength. We cannot look directly at the sun, but we can look at the sky and call it beautiful, and we can look at each other, covered in war wounds, and say we are beautiful. We are. We are beautiful.
I love you.















Oh, and I wanted to add: I took my painkillers and anti-anxiety drugs today, of course. They are helping, of course. I got exercise, I meditated deeply, I spoke with a therapist, I ate healthful happy foods, I did all the things people suggest one does in these situations. I am very very slowly working my way back to a steady and stable mood, but it will take a while - many people don't understand that it takes a while. That is yet another Big Thing. "Why isn't your treatment working yet? What is wrong with you? Shouldn't you be feeling better by now? Why are you still like this?"
It is tiring, and it is irritating. But I am still going to share, and speak, and stand, and stay strong. Because you asked. Because you need to know. Because I love you.
brightrosefox: (Default)
I kind of feel like throwing a tantrum and whining. You know, "Why meee? I don't wanna hurt like this! Make it stooop! I'm so tiiired!"
But part of growing up and growing wise is learning to understand how far you can raise your limits.
If there is one platitude I will forever hate, it is the "You have no limits, they are all just in in your mind" bullshit. I certainly do have my limitations. I just have to keep pushing them more and more so it takes more strength to reach them, and along the way I slowly grow stronger in my own way. Once I reach those limits, I exhaust myself, then I rest, and then I push the limits even more, because it's a goal, like climbing a mountain. I don't "push past my limits" - I push my limits beyond so I can keep reaching for them.
Just because I have my limits does not mean I can't surpass them. They will always be there, but the farther away they are, the stronger I become as I work toward them.
But I do allow myself the occasional stomping and screaming and getting angry at the pain along the way, because Dealing With It tends to get very old and very exhausting. Being told to slap on a metaphorical bandage and walk it off makes me snarl and growl. Being told to use the pain as a focus makes me determined. My pain can be a weapon in a way.
I have held these powerful masks and walls in place all my life, and eventually I must let them all come crashing down, and I have no idea what will happen then, I just know it will not be pleasant or good at all. I refuse to bow or bend to anyone else's ideas of what it means to push through pain, but I will absolutely work with my own views. If I bend, I won't break. But even if I do break, I will put myself back together. I am a Diamond. I am Steel. I am a Rose. I am a Lotus. I am fragile and powerful and You Can't Tell Me What To Do. Unless I like what you're telling me. Then I will be happy with your advice and your views. But do not ever tell me what I cannot do for myself, because You Are Not Me. I Am Not You. One Person Is Not Another Person. Here, let us trade shoes and figure out what it is really like.
I am full of love right now, I am shining so intensely that I can barely see past my own soul. Who wants some Love? Who wants some Shiny Love? Seriously, I am radiating energy and power so insanely that all three cats are staring at me, all purring, and I can actually sense all the trees in the neighborhood bending slowly toward my house. I have no idea what any of this means, but I do know that I am full of a powerful thing that I cannot explain in words. I will do my best to help you Shine and Feel Loved as I sit here, by myself, with my cats and my toys and my books and my medicines. I am made of stars, just like you. We are the universe exploring its own imagination.
It's All Good.


RadiantHeart

chakradragon

lotushands
brightrosefox: (Default)
Out of all the write-ups on Jackson's death that I've scrolled through (and they are everywhere), I like and agree with this one the most:
http://cleolinda.livejournal.com/785554.html
I'm not a big fan of Michael Jackson, but I grew up with his music, of course, and I don't know anyone who does not know his name. I'll be honest, my first memory of Jackson's music was actually the Weird Al parody of Jackson's "Beat it." Mom had bought me a little plastic record player with little records, and the first record she got me was Weird Al's "Eat It" because I wasn't eating (I'd had disordered eating even at six years old). After I listened to the parody over and over (Okay, okay, I'll eat a banana!) I watched the music video of "Beat It" and from then on I watched other Michael Jackson videos, of course. The man could dance.

I have been reading posts and articles that implore us now to redefine our concept of beauty. Michael Jackson never seemed to be satisfied with his external appearance, but his voice was always beautiful. Farrah Fawcett represented great inspirational beauty. And maybe we do need to look at what we've been doing to our bodies in the name of beauty. Whose ideal of beauty are we trying to reach, anyway? What sort of standards are we supposed to meet? Why do we hate ourselves for being ourselves?


I will now stop talking, before I start reading LJ posts like "OMG, will you all shut up about Michael Jackson now, I get it, he's dead, horrible tragedy." Because of course it will happen.
brightrosefox: (Default)
Out of all the write-ups on Jackson's death that I've scrolled through (and they are everywhere), I like and agree with this one the most:
http://cleolinda.livejournal.com/785554.html
I'm not a big fan of Michael Jackson, but I grew up with his music, of course, and I don't know anyone who does not know his name. I'll be honest, my first memory of Jackson's music was actually the Weird Al parody of Jackson's "Beat it." Mom had bought me a little plastic record player with little records, and the first record she got me was Weird Al's "Eat It" because I wasn't eating (I'd had disordered eating even at six years old). After I listened to the parody over and over (Okay, okay, I'll eat a banana!) I watched the music video of "Beat It" and from then on I watched other Michael Jackson videos, of course. The man could dance.

I have been reading posts and articles that implore us now to redefine our concept of beauty. Michael Jackson never seemed to be satisfied with his external appearance, but his voice was always beautiful. Farrah Fawcett represented great inspirational beauty. And maybe we do need to look at what we've been doing to our bodies in the name of beauty. Whose ideal of beauty are we trying to reach, anyway? What sort of standards are we supposed to meet? Why do we hate ourselves for being ourselves?


I will now stop talking, before I start reading LJ posts like "OMG, will you all shut up about Michael Jackson now, I get it, he's dead, horrible tragedy." Because of course it will happen.
brightrosefox: (Default)
Out of all the write-ups on Jackson's death that I've scrolled through (and they are everywhere), I like and agree with this one the most:
http://cleolinda.livejournal.com/785554.html
I'm not a big fan of Michael Jackson, but I grew up with his music, of course, and I don't know anyone who does not know his name. I'll be honest, my first memory of Jackson's music was actually the Weird Al parody of Jackson's "Beat it." Mom had bought me a little plastic record player with little records, and the first record she got me was Weird Al's "Eat It" because I wasn't eating (I'd had disordered eating even at six years old). After I listened to the parody over and over (Okay, okay, I'll eat a banana!) I watched the music video of "Beat It" and from then on I watched other Michael Jackson videos, of course. The man could dance.

I have been reading posts and articles that implore us now to redefine our concept of beauty. Michael Jackson never seemed to be satisfied with his external appearance, but his voice was always beautiful. Farrah Fawcett represented great inspirational beauty. And maybe we do need to look at what we've been doing to our bodies in the name of beauty. Whose ideal of beauty are we trying to reach, anyway? What sort of standards are we supposed to meet? Why do we hate ourselves for being ourselves?


I will now stop talking, before I start reading LJ posts like "OMG, will you all shut up about Michael Jackson now, I get it, he's dead, horrible tragedy." Because of course it will happen.
brightrosefox: (Default)
This whole thing is beautiful...
What Keeps a Guy Hooked on You for Life )

The one from "Will Robinson, 29, in love for 15 years" left me completely breathless. I know damn well that's how Adam feels about me, but reading it from another man's perspective is fascinating. Hips rule!
brightrosefox: (Default)
This whole thing is beautiful...
What Keeps a Guy Hooked on You for Life )

The one from "Will Robinson, 29, in love for 15 years" left me completely breathless. I know damn well that's how Adam feels about me, but reading it from another man's perspective is fascinating. Hips rule!
brightrosefox: (Default)
This whole thing is beautiful...
What Keeps a Guy Hooked on You for Life )

The one from "Will Robinson, 29, in love for 15 years" left me completely breathless. I know damn well that's how Adam feels about me, but reading it from another man's perspective is fascinating. Hips rule!

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