3, 2, 1… #MeToo

I gave an interview a couple of days ago.

On camera.

Scared shitless and shaking, anxiety riding me like a cowboy strapped to an 8-second bull.

But I did it.

One of the local TV stations had posted to Facebook on Monday that they were looking for people willing to share their stories about sexual harassment and sexual assault, all in light of Alyssa Milano’s viral Twitter #metoo, where women and men could come forward about their experiences.

I messaged them about my story that night, and didn’t think much more about it.

Tuesday morning rolled around, & I received a message back, from a reporter at the studio, wanting to know if I’d be willing to talk, on camera about my experience, to possibly help others.

Before I could psyche myself out of it, I said yes.

It was awkward, and uncomfortable, being in front of the camera, and talking about it brought my anxiety back full force, & I’ve been having major issues with it ever since.

Especially since my mom caught just the tail end of the interview on the news…and texted me, wondering what it was for…

When I told her why I’d done it, all she said was “Got ya,” and immediately changed the subject.

Because to this day, we still don’t discuss it.

Another reason for my anxiety to flare.

I hate how I looked on camera, as though I was almost ready to burst into tears… I wasn’t, it was just my nerves were so taut, I was strung so tight I was surprised I didn’t make snapping noises when I walked.

But I did it.

I finally spoke publicly about my assault. 

And that counts for something.

#metoo

Advertisements

Something I’ve Never Been

Well, I got my down-time, in an unexpected way.

I ended up with pneumonia, & had to stay home for a couple of days. 

Not exactly what I was going for, but then again, is it ever?

I have, however, had a lot of time to think. Which could be good or bad, considering who’s doing the thinking, since I tend to overthink every-fucking-thing. 

I’m tired of being alone all the time. I’m tired of my days consisting of nothing more than work, working out, & working on the book & house. 

And while I adore my Beloved Nephew, having my only real adult conversations be on the phone with someone hundreds of miles away…well, sometimes it lacks a little something.

Ok, I’ll come right out and say it. 

I want to date again. I want to feel desirable and wanted, and I want someone to look in my eyes and see me again. I want someone to hold my hand, to push my hair back behind my ear as they lean in for a kiss, and to cuddle with me on cold evenings.

I want to walk through the park in the brisk fall air, crunching the leaves beneath my boots & breathing in the autumn scents. I want to sit & listen to another person talk about their day, tell me all about it. 

I want to feel them lying next to me in bed, heartbeat under my hand…falling asleep together, and waking up the next day to tangled limbs & avoiding each other’s morning breath.

I want the disagreements, because they’re fucking normal, and to be able to work through them and talk them out like the grownups we are, even if we both have to throw mini hissy-fits first. 

I want the long days where it seems like nothing’s gone right, and the long nights that you never want to end. I want the passion and the friendship and the affection and the laughter and the tears, yes, even the tears, as long as we can overcome them. 

I want to be normal, and be like those couples I see out at restaurants & in stores, laughing with each other, telling inside jokes – I want to have inside jokes with someone again. 

I want all of these things, but then…my heart stutters, my eyes well up, & I remember that everyone leaves me.

I don’t get to have normal.

I don’t know why…

But it’s something I’ve never been.

You never write, You never call…

I haven’t written here for a while, I know. I could make excuses, I could apologize and squirm and fall to my internet knees…

But I won’t.

Yeah, I’ve had things to do. Yeah, I’ve been working on writing my book, which means I haven’t really had the urge to write here too. Yeah, blah, blah, blah…

Truth is? I haven’t really felt all that inspired to write here, either. I’ve been a little under the weather, & in a depression.

My head is kind of a dark place right now, & I haven’t really felt like sharing.

What I really want to do is curl up in the center of my bed, pull the covers up, & stay there for the next few days…but

There are bills to pay, & guess who earns the checks ’round here? 

So, every morning, instead of curling back into myself like I want to, I crawl out into the world & do what I have to to survive.

I ain’t got time for this, I got shit to do.

But, I so badly want to stay in the dark…

The Good, The Bad, &The Guilt

Today has been…all three.

The Good: I volunteered earlier this week to do a “Parade of Homes” this morning for the local Builders Association, taking tickets, welcoming people to one of the houses on the tour, for a 4-hour stint. 

I and another of my coworkers were paired together, and we had fun, chatting with the folks that showed up, even though it was cold, sitting at a table in the house’s open garage (a brisk 46 degrees, with a nice breeze dancing in from one corner occasionally, thanks!). We had a pretty steady stream of people from the opening time of 10, and were supposed to be relieved by our replacement at 1pm.

The Bad: Our replacement never showed.

About 1:45, we finally got ahold of the organizer of the volunteers, & let her know that we couldn’t stay anymore (my coworker had a child that wasn’t feeling well, & I had other plans as well for my afternoon) , & she was very gracious & thankful that we’d even stayed that long.

So, we packed it in, & left.

When I got home, I started working on my kitchen again. I’m preparing to re-paint, & need to scrub walls, so went & bought a cheap sponge mop at the dollar store, along with a degreaser spray for the walls. 

Then, I decided it was time to clean my ferret, Vinnie’s cage, & give him a bath.

Bath given, I turned him loose on the floor, & started cleaning his cage. He usually runs around like a Tasmanian devil possessed after a bath while I clean his cage. 

Not today.

The Guilt: While replacing the newspapers at the bottom of his cage, after scrubbing, I heard a strange noise in the kitchen.  It sounded like he’d gotten stuck somewhere, & was scrabbling, trying to get out.

He wasn’t stuck.

He was by the cat’s water bucket.

And his back legs were not working.

His back feet were twitching, like he was trying to make them work…but he couldn’t get his hindquarters up off the floor to work like normal.

And I hadn’t noticed when it set him on the floor in the towel.

He was fine just yesterday, what happened?!? 

How could I not notice there was something wrong?

Did he fall somewhere in his cage?

He hasn’t been out of his cage for the last couple of days, and it’s a large, 3-level cage that stands 6 feet tall. He could’ve gotten stuck in the wire-works, somewhere….

And I didn’t see it.

Ferrets are relatively quiet animals, not making much noise, Vinnie quieter than most, he hardly even chatters when he’s excited.

But, how did I not notice this??

Many domesticated ferrets die of cancer as well…

Is this it??

I feel horrible, guilty, and sad.

I know, that if there’s no visible improvement by the beginning of the week, that I’ll have to take him to the vet.

I’m pretty positive that there won’t be improvement. Things like this usually don’t work that way.

You can figure out the logical conclusion.

And that makes this guilt even worse.

Excuse me, I have children to call…


Ashes, Ashes, We all Fall…

I can feel the change inside of me.

Something that used to be there – is missing.

Well, maybe not missing… I think it might be dead.

And all I feel now, inside my soul…is ashes.

Where the flame used to burn brightly, fueling a zeal and passion for things – there is no light. No fire. Not even a spark.

Rejection at every turn will do that.

Something is broken, and, as I sit here among the scattered pieces, I’m not even sure I have the manual on how to fit them back together again.

My fingers lie numb at the ends of my hands, fumbling as I type… (Thank goddess for spell check and the “edit and view” feature before a posting)

I stare at the walls when I don’t have some mindless busywork to do, trying to remember what I used to fill my time with, and it all seems meaningless.

My Kindle keeps me from watching the real world pass me by…books my only true escape.

Working in my kitchen, readying to paint it, keeps me from screaming into my pillows, or crying into endless tissues. It’s pointless, anyway. No one hears.

I try to force myself outside my own comfort zone, even going so far as to volunteer for something through work this weekend, just to get out of the house…but in truth, I’m gritting my teeth and dreading it. 

I hate doing the “small talk social gathering” crap, anymore.

If I could just have one, real thing… Something here, that would make the days even worth it…

I know, I know…psychiatry says that happiness is supposed to come from within, you can’t hang your happiness on outside sources. 

But, when there’s only ashes in your soul…

You have to gather the firewood from somewhere.

You have to borrow the spark from another flame, to relight your own.

Walking through the ashes alone makes me weary.

And yet, I cannot sleep.

 The cycle never seems to end.

I need lightning.

Edit