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I sleep with a teddy bear, an enormous stuffed dog, and a
(yes, I am telling you about my stuffed animals, and well,
the sonic screwdriver doesn’t count because it’s definitely plastic, but it’s always
always always okay
within reach, it’s important that it’s there, right?)
a teddy bear, a stuffed dog, and a sonic screwdriver.
Azariah Enoch, Spot, and well
we could call him Sonic I suppose?
the strangest thing to me is that they all came from the same place and technically they all don’t belong to me yet I clutch so tightly to them and when I return Spot to his existence as a friend, not a cuddler, I will be much the worse off
I’m not really drugged up enough to be writing this (and that’s a whole nother issue, what does one call it, doped up? legally drugged up? high on medication that is slowly killing me even as it cures me, as a million people sitting in a million hospitals have said a million times before as they feel their pain slowly slide into the distance, and yet every time it’s new, every time it’s wondering how they got lucky, how I got here, why am I putting these poisons in my body in the hopes that they will
not quite kill me
but I’m writing it anyway.
the bear’s name is Azariah Enoch. He’s a remnant of
not better days, but different days.
the sonic screwdriver has two different pitches, roughly a third apart, about a G4 and an E4 but I definitely didn’t just play with it and listen in again
no you can believe me
that’s not what I’m doing at ten fifty seven on a monday night when the monday was neither good nor bad but the chest pain was rivetingly awful and my head promised revenge for every bright light ever invented, like Thomas Edison had a personal vendetta against my skull
I have good days and bad days and sometimes trying to get the words out on my screen mean something and other times it is a futile effort, pixels formed into a sword to stab both at the backs of my eyes and at my heart because I cannot express myself the way I want to, I cannot tell the blank and terrifying world the things that must be said and the things that should never be said.
Spot has a scratchable nose and a few holes I’ve patched up and I did not name him Spot.
I am slowly discovering a yearning deep within me not just for things I used to be able to do but also for things I will never get the chance to do.
this is strange, but I’d really like to know how to repair cars. even just to look at an engine and see the component parts. I love that first careful step between ignorance and knowledge, I love knowing, all of my tech classes at school have taught me that—I love pointing out each switch on the sound board and explaining what it does, I love naming each piece of the drum set and tetrising them together.
I would love to learn to woodwork, saws and chisels and pegs and sandpaper and careful handcrafting over time, detailed precision, something to cherish and use and love.
I find more and more that these are the things I value, the quiet moments in between, the tasks I can perform with my hands, and I wish for my strength back, to expand those moments into expertise. I feel as if I could train my fingers that I would be better prepared to do battle with my inner demons, as if bending a bow of bronze could make any difference to the darkness that swirls inside, the pain that threatens to eat me whole.
I long to get up from my rest and do something, anything.
and yet my hands shake, my breath comes too fast, and it all seems impossible. too far, too much. too many things to overwhelm me too fast and I would rather curl into myself than expand outward.
what is even like I can’t anymore
this designer and this beautiful blogger and this dress
the other dresses are also muchly worth checking out
but this dress has removed the need for punctuation from my life
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I am just barely now learning to publicly deal with my health problems.
this takes a ton of effort for me—asking for help, accepting help, frick, recognizing I need help—that’s all an ongoing process of learning. and I am surrounded with some amazing people who give me what I need and teach me what I need in the giving.
and I’m super grateful for that. but I get so sick and tired of the other people. I have a pretty angry streak in me that runs about as deep as my embarrassment over being publicly sick. it takes an immense trust for me to ask someone for help. and if I’m leaning on them, pale and wiped out and trembling and about to burst into tears because I hate being weak and forced to rely on someone else to get around, the last thing I want to hear is your joking commentary on how I’m either dating the person I’m leaning on or drunk or both. I understand honest confusion over the cause of the situation if you don’t know me but seriously if you don’t know me why are you mocking me? do I look like I’m having fun?
no, I look like I would kick your ass except I can’t even stand upright and everything hurts and my head is letting me know that the ground is looking pretty friendly right now.
is it weird how much laying out my clothes in an orderly fashion makes me feel so much better about my life?
it’s probably weird. but it’s good. using my ex-roommate’s bed to good purpose…..
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today I pierced my nose (right side, ring, exactly opposite of lil sis with her left side, stud) and sent out my first true after-college job application (big church worship coordinator).
tomorrow I’ll see my specialists and hopefully find the strength to finish two internship applications and fly home (home away from home? second home? from home to home? it’s all semantics at this point).
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I write “not strong enough” on my arm almost every day now.
bad habit, I know, writing on myself, my mother used to give me constant lectures about doodling there, but
I do it anyway.
friends are always telling me I seem so strong. so confident. so in control of whatever is going on. but mostly it comes back to how strong I am, how big my smile is, what strength I have to be going through this and not be a melted puddle on the floor.
I don’t know.
this doesn’t feel like strength. every day—morning is a tense time waiting to see if my migraine from yesterday will kick back in, if I’ll be able to see straight, if my legs will work, if any of my symptoms are still there. days are struggles, each activity a decision to be made—if I do this, can I do something else too? is doing this giving up something I want? how much energy do I get today?
I’m really good at giving myself to others, less good at taking time for myself. today—I thrifted. that’s all mine. I had to skip orchestra though. probably an even trade. missing hosanna, my best friends, my loves. for the night at home and peaceful.
I don’t feel strong. I feel pounded by life, weakened by my own body, forced to run and hide from myself and my pain. my fictional escape routes (all the fandoms I adore) are sometimes all my life, because living and working in the real world isn’t possible that day.
that’s not strength.
my body is trying to kill me—preventing me from sleeping, from eating, from living. the only way I get out of bed each day is through grace. the only way anything gets done—grace. the smile of acceptance when I can’t do something—grace (because believe me, there’s a whole ton of guilt and shame and selfloathing inside over whatever inability I’m dealing with at the moment, and it’s surging to overflow).
I read psalm 18 over and over, sometimes in the message, sometimes NIV, sometimes whatever is in arms’ reach. I’m trying to engrave it on my heart, to remember always that God saves and he gives strength. It’s not a one-or-the-other situation—he rescues me and he makes me strong.
some days I do better at remembering that than others. some days I watch half a season of supernatural and forgot that Sam and Dean aren’t real (brain fog does some strange things, folks). But I do remember—I have set God as a seal on my heart and arm. I’m not strong enough. but there is one who is.
you must think I’m strong
to give me what I’m going through
well forgive me
forgive me if I’m wrong
but it seems like more than I can do
on my own
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I had an amazing day except for the first part in a class where the teacher knows nothing (substitute prof because the amazing teacher’s on sabbatical and WHY did he leave) and continually dismisses female and african-american composers contributions to anything with “they didn’t have as many opportunities so that’s why their music sucks” and his underwhelming teaching and knowledge make me want to curl up into a ball and sing shostakovich quietly to myself until he leaves.
but @dancerbethany was cheering me up during class and gave me a new life motto:
take deep breaths and objectify men.
I have found all focus for my life from here on out. why am I in school anyway?
oh yeah, to hear an idiot tell me about things he read in the textbook he assigned to us.
seriously, you’d think he would realize that we know he only read the textbook before teaching this class, because every last scrap of information he talks about is in the textbook except for the mindnumbing ignorance.
/obviously still a little pissed off from this morning.
deep breaths. Jensen Ackles.
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for the first time in a little while, my life is looking up.
—>out of nowhere, my dad drove across state to visit me and take care of me for a bit (monday was the worst health day I’ve had in a long time).
—>my church is paying me for lent services, so I can worry a bit less about money now.
—>I have a couple of good job/internship opportunities (including a new one that starts as an internship but might turn full-time and would be simply wonderful and completely aimed at my skill set) around my home town, and I’m longing to be there and spending time with my siblings and good friends.
—>my prof was immediately understanding and trusting and pushed off my paper deadline a week for class, so I don’t need to panic about that.
—>smiley face bacon-and-eggs breakfast this morning, which may seem way ridiculous but is totally adorable when your roommate makes it for you.
it’s been a frustrating week, and the worst for health in a long time. my head’s spinning, my limbs don’t work very well, and I’m having a bad reaction to my new vitamin b supplement, but hey. life is pretty good all around. making the most of it and making sure to count my blessings, because I’ve got an awful lot.
forgive the crazy facial expression—I was sending a picture to sis, who promptly told me I looked like a strawberry with whipped cream. thanks for that, by the way.
but these are impressive choir robes, no? relic of lives past, carried on and beyond by traditional churches ministering to a slowly shrinking congregation.
I’m scared, guys. moving forward with applying to be youth pastor at my church while I’m worrying that I’m not meant to be there, that I’m going to grow stagnant in faith and mission if I don’t go join a missional community somewhere, some church where all are the sent, where all are declared fully in service to God and consumer culture is gone.
but, this is what I know: God works anywhere. is working anywhere. at all times. no matter where I go, I will find God’s work. there is work to be done in St. Luke.
I must firmly tell myself it doesn’t matter where I am. I’m trying. I really am.
but that doesn’t stop the fear that I’m doing the wrong thing. that I’m not quite that strong.
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