October 31, 2009

Halloween fun!

So I had a pretty good Halloween I'd say, we carved up some pumpkins, which rotted rather quickly, but were cute while they lasted. I made one a kitty and one a face and Eli managed to get the rotten pumpkins so he spent a lot of time cutting the rotten bits off so his pumpkins looked pretty weird.

I dressed up as a woman from the 60's minus the torturous undergarments worn then. I bought some Bumpits to get some nice big 60's hair which I would not have otherwise been able to do myself and some false eyelashes and some black eyeliner. I normally wear brown so I didn't have any. I worked at the yarn exchange and gave out candy to little kids. When I came home I had Eli take some pictures

March 27, 2009

Two women walk into a consignment store...

Sometimes when I am at work, I feel like I'm living behind two way glass or that I'm invisible or a robot or a child or otherwise not considered an adult citizen worthy of notice. This is not to say I disapprove entirely. Mostly I like it, I don't want people to notice me, I'd have to give up some of myself, my resources, stories or sympathy. I am selfish and they are mine to keep.

Having this state of semi-person-hood I tend to overhear or eavesdrop on various conversations going on in the store. It isn't very large and isn't a place for private conversations but they happen anyway. Sometimes I get really struck by the things they say, one time in particular it was two women who came into the store. They were late 20s early 30s and were chatty in a way I don't normally pay much attention to, but then the shorter stouter one mentioned to the taller prettier one that she was in 14 weeks pregnant.

The pretty one told the stout one that she was so happy and excited and jealous because she just so wanted another baby but right now wasn't the right time for her. They went on to talk about the various merits of different shirts and other things I don't care to remember and then came the bit that struck me the most and made me remember these women. I had managed to gather that they both already had more than one child and the pregnant one said to the pretty one that her pregnancy wasn't planned but that she was very happy because she was already 30 and her and her partner had agreed to not have children past the age of 30. The implication being that it was much too old. The pretty one agreed emphatically and added that it was because of her own advancing age that she was so jealous of the stout one's pregnancy.

First I thought they were small minded and a bit ignorant. Then it sort of dawned on me like a blow to my head. Here I am working in a shop like I was when I was 17, sitting on the edge of my 27th birthday, no plans for marriage or children in sight. I began to feel a keen sense of loss for a life I would never have, a choice I implicitly made without realizing. Later that day I thought about when I was 19 and I dreamed of a life where I was married by 22 and had all my children early and well. I would have a little house with a tree swing where the children's father would push them. I had a man in mind, but not in body and that dream and many similarly romantic dreams of my future passed away amid the ashes and smoke that was the year 2001.

More than the twin towers went down in flames that year, my family life and personal life also spectacularly exploded in ways I'm still paying for and trying to clean up after. I switched schools to be closer to a home I would never be able to grasp again and to be present for people who no longer wanted me. I changed majors because I found out I wasn't going to be Indiana Jones, I was going to be underemployed, underpaid and bored out of my mind. I had imagined I would be telling stories. Reality was I would be endlessly sifting data desperately, endlessly trying to come to no conclusions at all.

Those women brought me to a startling clarity that I will never have a life where I am young and married with children. I will probably never have a life where I am married with children at all. It isn't to say that I want these things, in the past 8 years I've become harder and more selfish, perhaps more aware of my damaged and self centered nature, resigned that no good would come of me having children to care for when I more than occasionally resent the responsibility of the cat. So I grieve a little for the loss of those choices that used to be so brilliantly shining in front of me. I think about the choices I made without thinking I was choosing. There is a little mourning, too, for a person who could want those things, by the person who runs screaming afraid from them.

March 10, 2009

On Lying

So I promised myself that I would write some thoughts on lying today.

So. Lying.

Bad thing right?

Well... everything is relative.

Good lies I have told:

~ Comforting a woman about her color choices for yarn even thought I thought they were hideous. She just wanted to be told that they were good, so I did. I do this all the time. These people don't really want my opinion, they just want someone to tell them they've done ok. I'm alright with this, just another part of life as a shop girl. Having tact is better than being honest most of time.

~ I embellish stories, make up details I don't remember. I'm not even sure that this counts as lying per-se, but I'm usually very aware that I'm doing it. Sometimes I tell about things that didn't even happen to me, but could have, or happened to someone I know, when it is easier to explain that it was me rather than who the person was or is to me and what happened to them. First person experience is more powerful than second-hand so I occasionally take shortcuts.

~ I told an ex that I wasn't cheating on him when he specifically asked me if I was with the specific person I was, about five times. I knew it was kinder for him to think that I hadn't. I think he believed me. The man I was messing around with was a wake up call for me to end that abusive tragedy of a relationship. Not that is was right precisely but I'm still sure it was better to lie to him. He always believed in rainbows and soul-mates and happy endings and it was better for me to prop him up a little then tear him all down. There are other things about the end of that relationship I regret doing, other truths I wish I had shared but that was never one of them.

Bad, no good, stinking lies I have told:

~ Repeatedly constantly, every other week at least faking I was sick so I didn't have to go to school, sometimes for days at a time. I don't think my mother wanted to deal with me so she just let me and I was quiet and spent most of the time reading or sleeping so she wouldn't really know. I did this for all 12 years of my public school education. I also constantly lied about why I didn't have homework or papers done to get extensions. I was clever and bold at it and it was terrible. I played this game with somewhat less success with my professors in college. I was the Queen of bullshit. I did this when I worked for the phonebook too. I invented relatives with horrible problems and medical conditions to get out of working. I don't think the boss believed me but he didn't care enough to scold me. I hated that job. I've left all this behind and have called in sick I think exactly one day since I started working my current jobs. I just can't not work, there isn't anyone to cover for me since there are so few of us, I think the fact that I'm not a replaceable cog, that I'm important and I need to be there keeps me honest. Also I don't hate it so much I feel sick at the thought of being there. I actually quite like my own little corner of retail.

~ When I was 18 I had a little red convertible car that I would constantly pull into the driveway too fast. I parked in front of my dad's old decommissioned pickup. My mother would tell me all the time not to pull into the driveway too fast. One day she was right, I hit the truck and smashed the fiberglass on the front of my car. I told my dad what happened and my younger brother. I told my mother that the car had been hit in the school parking lot. She wanted to call the cops and couldn't figure out why everyone wasn't as upset as her about what happened. Eventually I convinced my dad to tell her the truth and I have a very vivid image of her sitting quietly on the stairs telling me how disappointed in me she was etc. I still think it would have been worse if I'd just told her. I felt pretty terrible for dragging everyone else into lying to her but its still pretty funny to me now. Really funny actually.

~ Being given checks to pay university bills and then just sitting on them for months while fees piled up because I I let it go so long I didn't know how to fix it. Then lying to my father about what I'd done and why, putting him off for any and every reason I could think of. It was some pretty fucked-up behavior I still don't really understand. I was depressed and having anxiety attacks and wasn't functioning. I didn't get help for 3 more years after that. It probably would have been better for him to call me on my bullshit but he had enough to deal with in his immediate vicinity with my younger brother off the rails much worse than I.

A lie I should feel bad about but don't:

~ Telling my parents that I was late or couldn't make it to some family function because of Eli. I know, that sound terrible, but believe me it goes down a lot smoother if they really think that things are beyond my control. I don't do this much anymore because I don't need to. They don't try to control me as much anymore so I don't need to put them off. I feel a little tiny bit bad because it bothered Eli, but that is really the only reason.

So... lying:

I think we all tell them sometimes. Well except Eli, he can't lie if his life depends on it. Even when he should. I don't tell the whole story, I misdirect and I embellish. Sometimes objectively I think I can't be considered a 'good' person. I try to spare people mostly, protect and smooth my way in the world. It might be mercenary, but I think it works mostly.

February 23, 2009

I've been away

So much has happened since I last posted. I'll get to it but I'd like to mention that while I haven't been updating my etsy store I have been doing a lot of thinking and have been doing quite a bit of writing. It used to be my way of dealing with the world and with my emotions and I stopped and some point and I'm trying to get back, because it was, and is, very helpful.

So the point being that I'm going to be posting some of that writing here since this is sort of a log of the creative goings on in my life and I've rather neglected my readers (all 5 of you)

So without further ado here is my first blog-piece. It has to do with memory and grief. I tend to mull these things over a lot. I may revise it some more and some point because it is a little rough but I feel like I like it right now and will loose it upon the world for at least a little while.

It wasn't the Scissor Sisters was it?

I asked him if he remembered what the song was, because it was important and I had forgotten and it meant something. He remembered the sombrero, the toy guitar, my impromptu karaoke and the soggy foos-ball table but the song, even the band is lost to history now I guess. I spit it all out in a rush, my question too specific with faked casualness and poor reception on my cell. I knew he wouldn't remember since I had always loved him more than he loved me, but it was ok, it was always so, so ok, because when you were with him it was like you were his only and best friend in the whole world. I never felt jelous.

He would introduce you to everyone, tell you things about them, tell you hilarious stories and he would listen too. He was just so there. He tried to look out for me, he really did when I started going crazy and alienating everyone with wantonness, carelessness and a selfish drive to try very desperately to feel alive while my insides went numb. I was careless and he fought with me and I pushed and chaffed and then he was gone. He moved and so very far in thought and space. In estimation too, I believe. I feel a dull ache in my chest when those happy memories of silly, destructive. and oh-so-drunken behavior come to mind. They were so brief and I miss him and our friendship. Neither of us remember the song anymore.