Return to Sender.

I haven’t written for so long that I simply just forgot all of the things I wanted to write about previously.

This is the first time in YEARS that I haven’t had a job. Last time I didn’t have a job I was snorting drugs and 20 years old. I’m 35 now. The only time I was unemployed was between new jobs, never because I was ‘let go’.

I don’t have a job because I stood up for myself and didn’t let people walk all over me and treat me like a robotic brainless being. It pains me physically to be in a place that I cannot connect with any longer. I was there for 6.5 years and in the end, it felt like I was just a washcloth in the dirty laundry becoming mildewy and moldy. I am so angry, and that is the extent of my emotions at this point. I am sure it will all kick in, in the near future. Or maybe it won’t and I’ve already processed it.

Last August I had a reading with 2 wonderful souls on 2 separate occasions and there was to be a transition, there would be changes.. and here they are. I haven’t even had a moment to process any of this because I’ve been so busy with commissions coming in. I am so so grateful for this, and it just goes to show you that manifestation works.

Some people think it’s silly that your art is your life’s work, but it is mine, for now.

I have been given so many opportunities that I’ve been humbled on numerous occasions – it makes me smile just thinking about it.

Right now, I am, as they say ‘doing me’. And it feels so fucking good. I am going to finish that book I started writing 4 years ago.

Return to sender, my friends.

“A smile is a curve that sets everything straight.”

Experiences.. Iowa Burlesque Festival…

Hold tight, this is going to be a long one and most likely a big jumbly flow of consciousness from my own perspective.

As a 2.5 year old performer (with most of my performances being only in the last year) I have been given great opportunities this year. All of which has made me a more humble human being in all aspects of my life. Without persistence and without asking – you are setting yourself up for failure as a new(er) performer. I have heard a few people say “No one is asking me to perform!” – guess what? That’s not how it works. You have to show you’re working hard, you have to ask and ask and ask, even if you don’t get an answer – be persistent..not annoying.

If you don’t put yourself out there, if you don’t ask, if you don’t submit to festivals or shows – you will never know the answer. Do not be intimidated by anyone – there is no point. Intimidation is a sign of weakness!

This year one of the festivals I submitted to was the Iowa Burlesque Festival. At first I was very hesitant because.. IOWA, but when Dannie pushed me, I did, and I got in. Well, I was wrong about Iowa (damn close-minded Canadians!:) ). What a fantastic fucking place full of fantastic fucking people and fantastic energy. I felt like I had come back to life.

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Artist’s Muse

When I was visiting Ottawa for the Ottawa Burlesque Festival, I had about an hour to spare on Bank St. in the Glebe (I just love saying that name).

I sauntered by this store called the Papery – I am often attracted to stationary stores and I have quite the load of paper at home, you know, just in case there was ever a shortage.. This one was particularly attracting me as I saw a display of amazing (to me!) artwork.

Women’s faces were painted and a veil was placed over their eyes – it was a mixed media painting with the veil being actual fabric. There was another painting that had a leg with a lamp, and on that lamp was actual fringe!

I can’t find a picture of it, but this one is also amazing:

by Debbie Lyall

It turns out that the artist was there that day. As I was looking at some prints of hers to buy, we struck up a wonderful conversation! She is such a wonderful and kind soul of a lady.

She asked me if she could take a picture of the profile and front of my face as she liked my ‘style’ and I said sure, because she was going to create a new painting from my photo. I was so excited!

Last night while I was drifting off to sleep I was thinking about our conversation and the piece of art that would come from it. When I woke up, it was in my inbox and I cried when I saw it. Perfect timing and synchronicity.

Behold… I am in love. She mirrored my red lips, eyes and my red earrings so precisely!

Minnie Peron by Debbie Lyall

Minnie Peron by Debbie Lyall

What’s a nice word for ‘Depression’?

There isn’t one. Depression isn’t nice. It’s not even one bit comforting. It’s lonely and it pulls the covers off of you when all you want to be is covered by a warm security blanket. It looks at you in the face and tells you that you’re an awful, horrible human being who deserves all of the bad that comes their way. It eats you up and spits you out. It grinds you and leaves you naked, and not in the way that you prefer it to.

Why are you depressed?
Why don’t you just chill out?
Why don’t you meditate?
Why don’t you get over it?
Why don’t you get help?
Why are you sad?
Why don’t you just calm down?
Why can’t you be more optimistic?
Why can’t you just stop being you? Oh you mean being totally honest and vulnerable? Yes, let me just stop doing that.

Why don’t you..
Why don’t you…
Why don’t you….

Why don’t you just.  Why does there have to be an answer for all of the questions you’ve made up that you think there might be answers to?

It doesn’t work that way. If it did, we’d be 100% happy and thankful and full of gratitude and love (and I know some of us are). We’re not (I’m not) – especially looking and observing the world around us – it’s such an evil dirty place, but yet you have to look around to see what makes it beautiful.

I am going to do just that:

The trees, the sky, the moon, the sun, the shoes on my feet, the money in my wallet, the ability to see, the ability to listen, the ability to talk, the ability to express yourself the way you see fit, the ability to say yes and no,  the ability to love who you want to love, the ability to choose the people around you, the ability to shut off relationships that are not meaningful, the love that others want to give you, the love that others do GIVE you, the ability to accept all of this or not.

Ability. Depression. People. 2 way streets.

An Offended Cat

This day last year, Maia passed away. She was 15 years old. She went through every single moment of my life from the time I was 19 until I was 34.

meandmaia

I found this poem to commemorate her passing last year, but I thought I would share it again.

it snuggles close
half closed eyes
rolling with white
its forelegs loosely
tip towards sky

its warmth heats
up our sweet contact

‘such pretty thing
poor thing cant
enjoy the world as much
as we do’ i thought

as if it understands
my thought
the cat struggles
to have me let it down

i do so and it walks
away without
turning back,
as if offended

by john tiong chunghoo

Empath / HSP / Boundaries

I have recently found out that I am an Empath. How I found this out was a fluke, or it was just an intuitive soul that knew this about me. How it happened doesn’t even matter at this point. It just did, and I welcome it with open arms.

http://www.urbanclairvoyant.com/purpose/the-joys-and-pitfalls-of-being-an-empath/

Never have I been so in-tune and so intrigued by myself and/or this new found revelation.

For years I have had what I call a gut feeling, and it’s not that, it’s just that Empaths are highly intuitive souls. They’re sensitive and they carry the weight of the world on their shoulders – without even realizing it.

There are events over the years that have happened that I knew were going to unravel, that have happened.. sometimes they have played out slowly and sometimes so very fast.

I never knew how to deal with it or how to process these feelings properly. I’ve recently started reading a book called the Highly Sensitive Persons Survival Guide and I am totally picking up what it’s putting down. Reading this has also have me putting myself through different boundaries I was afraid to cross.

I have always somewhat thought of myself as a very shy individual, but in the past couple years, that has changed. I have accepted myself for who I am, thus allowing others to as well. Interesting how that all works, huh?

Though I don’t need validation or praise, I am so very lucky to have a partner that is on this journey with me.. even if he knows it or not.

I have been using the power of manifestation lately, and it’s working. My thinking of that school was always so silly, and now that I am in it, I am amazed.

Ways I’ve been helped by all of this:

1. Opening up myself to people and friends I may have not been able to before
2. A photo shoot in the park in which I was barely wearing any clothing
3. The ability to start loving my body no matter what anyone else’s standards are
4. Being a little more gentle with people (this is very hard for me, as I’ve been called ‘crass’ my whole life)
5. Asking for what I want, instead of what everyone else around me wants
6. Being alone. I love my quiet time. In fact, I live for it. It’s not a selfish thing as I’ve learned, it’s more of a psychologically and mentally uplifting time for me now

That’s enough for now. Hopefully by sharing this, others out there can be aware as well.

 

I highly recommend this book by Ted Zeff for the person that is just realizing they are an HSP. While this book is an account of a personal experience by Ted, you can still relate as an HSP, though you may have different experiences. ie: meditating is not for everyone, but it worked for Zeff. Take this book with a grain of salt as your experience as an HSP will be different.

http://www.goodreads.com/book/show/155376.The_Highly_Sensitive_Person_s_Survival_Guide

xo.

7!

Today one of my step-daughters is 7. I don’t know why I feel like this is such a momentous occasion, but it is for me. I met her when she was 10 months old. I feel very connected to her in ways that I can’t explain. When I am with her, I feel very maternal, protective and loved in a way that only a child can love a person.

I think she’s an old soul deep down inside of that 7 year old mind/body of hers. She’s very intuitive and knows when you’re feeling down or happy. She makes me fill out a sheet every day in regards to my moods. She even calls weekly to make sure I’ve filled it out!

So today is dedicated to her. She’s special and kind and also drives me crazy because she never wants to leave my side (which I should be grateful for!) She likes to cuddle and have quiet time with me in my bed while we both watch Netflix on our respective devices. She loves to help me bake, wash dishes, fold laundry and even fetches me glasses of water if I need one. So, I bought her an apron so that she can continue the love of being in the kitchen…

Happy Birthday, Veronica!

 

 

Resonation.

I tend to compare my last relationship (which was my 9.5 year long marriage) to my current relationship (almost 7 years). I was always trying to find out how I could express how the 2 relationships were very different.

Today I read an article about Love and Power and it resonated something within me. I am a monogamous woman. My values aren’t too old fashioned, and I think that I can be happy with one person for the rest of my life. Yes, I have experimented in the past with women, dating a couple men at a time, etc. I prefer to have a long lasting relationship with a man. Sure, I’ll kiss a girlfriend here and there, grab boobs & butts (women are sexy, and should be appreciated goddamnit!)

http://www.psychologytoday.com/articles/201312/love-and-power

That is the article I will be referencing.

I realized that in my marriage there was no sense of equality. I felt like a lesser-than. I cooked, I cleaned, I did all the things ‘that a woman is supposed to do’ *barf* and after many years I resented it. Heavily. I resented not only this man that I felt like I was a slave to, but he repulsed me physically after a while because of all of this. (side note: we are friends, he is not repulsive, but at the time, I found him to be so. Though I don’t think he has changed much in his expectations for a woman.)

Anyhow, I think focusing on the Elements of Equality is the most important part of the article.

The Elements of Equality

  • Attention. Both partners are emotionally attuned to and supportive of each other. They listen to each other. And both feel invested in the relationship, responsible for attending to and maintaining the relationship itself.
  • Influence. Partners are responsive to each other’s needs and each other’s bids for attention, conversation, and connection. Each has the ability to engage and emotionally affect the other.
  • Accommodation. Although life may present short periods when one partner’s needs take precedence, it occurs by mutual agreement; over the long haul, both partners influence the relationship and make decisions jointly.
  • Respect. Each partner has positive regard for the humanity of the other and sees the other as admirable, worthy of kindness in a considerate and collaborative relationship.
  • Selfhood. Each partner retains a viable self, capable of functioning without the relationship if necessary, able to be his or her own person with inviolable boundaries that reflect core values.
  • Status. Both partners enjoy the same freedom to directly define and assert what is important and to put forth what is the agenda of the relationship. Both feel entitled to have and express their needs and goals and bring their full self into the relationship.
  • Vulnerability. Each partner is willing to admit weakness, uncertainty, and mistakes.
  • Fairness. In perception—determined by flexibility and responsiveness—and behavior, both partners feel that chores and responsibilities are divided in ways that support individual and collective well-being.
  • Repair. Conflicts may occur and negativity may escalate quickly, but partners make deliberate efforts to de-escalate such discussions and calm each other down by taking time-outs and apologizing for harshness. They follow up by replacing defensiveness with listening to the other’s position.
  • Well-being. Both partners foster the well-being of the other physically, emotionally, and financially.

After I read all of that I had a EUREKA moment. This is why I’m happier. This is why I feel like an equal in our relationship rather than a lesser-than. This is why I love him so much, still to this day. These are such elementary reasons to feel how you should in a loving and equal relationship, yet we don’t even think about them at all.

 

Ain’t that funny.

First of all I was listening to Jimmy Justice and he was the inspiration for the title of this post!

3 years ago I decided that I was going to write my life story. A memoir. I thought that my life was exciting enough that I would be able to put it in writing. People would laugh and write reviews about this amazing book about this amazing woman who survived all this shit!

Then I decided that most of us have survived shit. And what would be so different about my shit and other people’s shit? I don’t mean to call it shit in a bad way, but a lot of it was bad and it was shit.

I wrote Chapter 1. I haven’t looked at it in 3 years, because there was a barrier.  That barrier was my brain. It made me stop writing because I would have to recollect all the memories that I have saved up inside of it. I would have to write out all the things about all the stories that I have told multiple times to friends, to family, to anyone who could relate.

So today, I was having tea with a man who I work with and we never sat down to chat before. We admire each other very much, but we never sat down to chat or get to know each other. Today we did, and it tortured my little hamster wheel in my brain, and made it move very very very fast…

I always think that I’m always alone in the way I have lived, or the relationships I have kept (or not), the troubles that I go through and all of things that make me special.

Both of us have a very challenging relationship with our parents.  We’re not the only ones. The challenge IS the relationship.  I know a lot of others who have challenges too. All so different, yet so similar.

Coming to terms with the fact that my relationship with my Mother is so far gone hurts very much inside, but it also helps to know that I am not the only one in this world that is in this situation.

So this brings me back to my book. Originally, the book was supposed to focus on a very different story of my life, and my challenge today is getting past that barrier. Though I think I may have moved it over to the right a little bit…

My goal for the next few months is to open up that chapter and continue the story. Even if I don’t ever have it published in a book, I will share it with anyone who will read it as we all have our own story to tell. Stay Tuned…

Yes, No, Maybe so.

In the past 5 years I have been trying to alter the way I think.

Clearly, it’s taken me a long time to come to terms with my thoughts/actions/feelings/behaviour.

When I was going to therapy, I learned a lot about this cycle. So much that my therapist had to leave a permanent diagram on the whiteboard so that I could remember every time I came to sit in my chair.

It’s a cycle, it’s a circle, things happen & things don’t happen, depends on which mode you’re on.

I’ve learned to be more assertive, to expect the worse at times, and to not get too excited about things. Though, I naturally get excited about things, this does mean that I get easily disappointed easier than most (or so I think.) I still take things personally (but not as bad as I used to).

The one thing that I get now that I didn’t get before is that the one thing you may think is the worst at the time, IS NOT. It’s amazing how far positive thinking can take you.

ie: the thing I wanted to happen so badly that one time.. did not –> you can choose to be sad, angry or mad. You can choose to chalk it up as an experience that you can learn from and smile, knowing that there is nothing to be upset about. You move on.

I really don’t think life is that bad unless you are stuck in a crisis that may be life or death. I believe that everything happens for a reason, and that you can’t just force things to happen as you wish. Too much debt? Pay it off. Dislike your job? Find a new one.  Miserable in your relationship? Leave. Not as easy as one may think, right? There is no sense in wallowing in things that you CAN change, and sometimes even the things you cannot.

When I was a teenager I was diagnosed as being a manic depressive, and I feel that while I still may have a little bit of that inside of me, it’s how I choose to deal with it when it surfaces. I don’t let it get the best of me or take over.

I sound like I’ve been reading way too many Psychology Today articles, which maybe I have…

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