We Have Come To Be Danced

Another wintry morning approaches and I sit here considering the day. Another performance. If you had told me twenty, ten, or even five years ago that I would be standing on a stage in a revealing costume performing in front of an audience I would have laughed. Outrageous really. And if you had picked into my head and looked around you would have found a very broken woman. One who did not feel worthy. One who did not see her value. One whose thoughts were drowned out by the refrains of “not good enough, not pretty enough, not smart enough, not thin enough”, the constant defense of her marital status, her maternal status, her reason to even be.

And this is why I dance.

I find within dance a powerful community of women, strong minded and creative women who make me feel ok, even supported, to be exactly who I am with every ounce of my being. That whatever decisions I’ve made with my life are mine alone and no one else’s. That the woman I am is worthy and valuable just the way I am and shown me that maybe we’re all a little broken but our cracks make us unique.

So I work my fingers raw and worry if my colors clash and fret about what to do with my hair. And after each performance, if you look very closely, some of those cracks aren’t as jagged as they used to be. Ragged wounds fade into hairline fractures that could be considered “character” perhaps. The sort of wounds that don’t hurt so much to walk on anymore.

Mornings like these I take a deep breath and reflect once more on the words written many years ago by Jewel Mathieson…

We have come to be danced
Not the pretty dance
Not the pretty pretty, pick me, pick me dance
But the claw our way back into the belly
Of the sacred, sensual animal dance
The unhinged, unplugged, cat is out of its box dance
The holding the precious moment in the palms
Of our hands and feet dance.

We have come to be danced
Not the jiffy booby, shake your booty for him dance
But the wring the sadness from our skin dance
The blow the chip off our shoulder dance.
The slap the apology from our posture dance.

We have come to be danced
Not the monkey see, monkey do dance
One two dance like you
One two three, dance like me dance
But the grave robber, tomb stalker
Tearing scabs and scars open dance
The rub the rhythm raw against our soul dance.

We have come to be danced
Not the nice, invisible, self-conscious shuffle
But the matted hair flying, voodoo mama
Shaman shakin’ ancient bones dance
The strip us from our casings, return our wings
Sharpen our claws and tongues dance
The shed dead cells and slip into
The luminous skin of love dance.

We have come to be danced
Not the hold our breath and wallow in the shallow end of the floor dance
But the meeting of the trinity, the body breath and beat dance
The shout hallelujah from the top of our thighs dance
The mother may I?
Yes you may take 10 giant leaps dance
The olly olly oxen free free free dance
The everyone can come to our heaven dance.

We have come to be danced
Where the kingdom’s collide
In the cathedral of flesh
To burn back into the light
To unravel, to play, to fly, to pray
To root in skin sanctuary
We have come to be danced
We have come.

Free to a good home…

So I have something that’s been bothering me for a while. By “a while” I mean since 2005ish.

I spent some ten years in the SCA. The last few years were my most active. Unfortunately after some ten years of wonderful memories I made a terribly grave error. Within six months I walked away. Walked away from ten years of service, all of my friends, my primary hobby, and the glue that was at that point holding my shaky relationship together. I was at the time the Kingdom Chirurgeon, Master Chirurgeon, Her Ladyship, Protege, Herald, Senior Heavy Marshal, Senior Light Marshal, and Junior Siege Marshal. That first one there was my mistake. Unbeknownst to me I was the sacrificial lamb in a bitter battle between three old drunks. I found this out as I left the presence of the Crown after accepting my position, literally waiting for me at the end of the row of chairs as I walked away. I spent the next six months being torn apart, called things most people can’t pronounce, and generally in tears because of something I did not do, was not involved in in any way, was a clear case of wrongdoing that occurred before I ever took office, and which pitted these bitter old drunks against one another in a disgusting display of disrespect and disrepute that left me leaving a July Coronation having resigned my position and walking away from the club forever.

And after seven years this still lives in a ribbon case in a storage box in the basement:

2013-04-20 02.00.53-1

I would like to give it to someone who will find it a good home. If you are that person, or know of someone who is, please let me know.

Move it fat ass.

So back in September I decided I was tired of being fat and tired. I’m not overly obese but I am certainly far too heavy. So I went into it full bore. I walked nearly every day for the entire month of September. I had energy, I was sleeping well, I was getting shit done, and in the process I lost 15 pounds and my clothes were fitting an awful lot better. I got back into belly dance classes and life was looking good.

Then we got to October. My daily routine got derailed. The daily walks came to a screeching halt. My energy waned. Sleeping, sometimes at all, became an issue. My motivation evaporated. My to do list and stress grew exponentially. Weather got ugly. And come February after some incredibly unprofessional behavior from the instructor I left my belly dance class. And I’ve gained back 7 pounds.

It’s mid April.

I can’t live like this. I want to have energy. I want to SLEEP. I want to get this shit done. I want to DO so much and not just in my head but actually DO it.

I have a new belly dance class that starts tonight. I have some challenging choreography that I have literally a month to learn.

It’s a really nice day out.

I need to go take my walk.

My cranky old cat

I had left home for college a year early. By the time I got to Buffalo I was in my fourth bad relationship and working on my second college at the ripe old age of nineteen. I decided that what I was really missing in life was a cat.

We went to the SPCA up in Tonawanda that July. Lady was showing us the cat room when I realized my jacket was caught on something. I turned around to find a calico cat looking up at me, laying on her back in her cage with her paw out under the door and hooked on my jacket. We took her out of her cage and she proceeded to climb into my jacket and curl up. We took her home. She was eight weeks old. I named her Pawz.

I remember when that relationship failed miserably. We were in house #2 with him and I was sitting in the living room packing. She comes in dragging a cat toy behind her, one of those feathers on a stick, and drops it in front of me and just looks at me. She was packing too.

She was with me through fifteen moves, twice cross country, two earthquakes, a tornado, more hurricanes and blizzards than I can count, four horribly failed relationships, more terrible life decisions than I care to admit, and had decided that John’s lap belonged to her. She’d trained John and the Orkin man to turn on the kitchen sink for her. She’d outlived three brothers and outstayed many more. She’s survived by just two.

Her kidneys failed this weekend. The vet says the next step would have been seizures. I couldn’t let her go through that. She’d suffered enough for me. I couldn’t let her suffer any more. After eighteen years she was ready to go. I just wasn’t ready to let her go. Sometimes the right decision is the hardest.

I just hope she knows how much I loved her.


Why? Because you’re an idiot, that’s why.

So I will begin this with the disclaimer that this post is not aimed at any particular person or people.

But it totally is.

So there seems to be two very distinct personality types on Facebook these days that, each time I see them post, leaves me reaching to toggle off the “Show In News Feed” option. Oddly enough they also tend to be women. And I’m willing to bet anyone else reading this knows these kind of people and have also burnt the willpower to not respond with, in summary, this post.

“OMG look at this totally amazing expensive thing I bought for my pseudo-fetish!”
“I got this amazing dress that was ridiculously expensive for this function I have to go to and will never wear again!”
“Those boots are SO cute that I had to have them in two colors even though they are SO expensive that I shouldn’t have.”
“*cry* I can’t pay my phone bill and my mom won’t help me cover rent *cry* why is life so unfair?”

“(insert meme about what a real man is)”
“(insert meme about some unrealistic romantic fantasy)”
“(insert borderline inappropriate meme about how much of a whore she wants to be)”
“Why can’t I find a man? *cry* Why won’t anyone love me?”

Please. Seriously. Just shut the fuck up.

Back from the bottom of the well.

Sooo yeah it’s been three months since I last wrote something. I guess I kinda assume that anyone reading this probably knows me well enough. On the off chance you don’t I’ve dealt with depression for as long as I can remember. I can sink into a deep depression for months at a time. I generally stop communicating (at least communicating very well), stop writing, stop creating, etc. It’s generally a pretty crappy time. John is curiously good at dealing with it so props for him. I’m feeling a smidge better. Two months later. Ughs. Anywho…

I had started a blog post, I kid you not, two months ago that never got finished. Yay for save as draft. I’ll work on finishing that up in a bit.

So an update on the health thing. Tummy troubles are much improved. So that’s a bonus. Problem is that I lose all motivation when I’m depressed so I haven’t been walking in um erk, 10 weeks? I did go walking today. Kinda bummed because my Zombies, Run! isn’t working right 🙁 I sent in a bug report so we shall see. Good news is I didn’t hurt and didn’t have to stop, so didn’t lose all of the progress I had made. Just have to keep doing it. What I really need is an exercise partner, someone to browbeat me into going every day.

The first goal for me was to get under 250. And while I was busy being all uncommunicative I actually got down to 245. Problem is I stopped walking for like 2 months and stuff, so I’m back up to 250. But that’s still better than where I started. New goal is 225. That will put me back at the weight where I last had professional photos done. Still heavy but getting there. End goal is 175. Only, ya know, 75 pounds to go.

I did start writing again and am plotting a tassel belt that I want to see if I can sell, just to see if that’s a viable option. Pondering volunteering again but transportation ends up being an issue there. Otherwise still plodding along here. How’s everybody else?

Hateful BITCH

So there’s been this plant. We don’t know what it is. It was growing in that little strip of dirt between our sidewalk and the neighbor’s sidewalk. It was getting BIG! We weren’t sure if it was a squash, a zuc, a pumpkin, a watermelon, no idea. But it had started to get flowers so we were waiting to see what it was!

So I walk out the door 30 mins ago for my walk. And laying in the grass in that little strip of ground is the plant… ripped up out of the ground, roots bare, wilting in the sun.


The bitch is the woman who lives next door. No, I don’t know her name nor do I care to. She is hateful. Her parents are hateful. I don’t know if that other guy who keeps showing up is her brother or her boyfriend or what. He’s hateful too. Her son’s father comes by sometimes and he’s a really nice guy. NO idea how that whole thing happened. I don’t know if they are still married or not. OH and don’t forget the poodle. The poodle that is obviously her mother’s that she hates and lets shit in our yard.

So I came back (a little more quickly from my walk because I was fuming) and got my trowel. The plant has now been transplanted to our flower bed. It was empty anyway because I was planning to put a hydrangea there in the spring. I poured about a half gallon of water on it. I’m praying it comes back.

And from here on out, any more dog shit I find in our yard will also be “transplanted” back to her’s where it belongs.

Politics and Religion

So most folks know I started out working on a degree in politics while actively involved in campaigning and ended up a decade later finishing with a degree in religion and very active in my local religious community. Here’s the problem though: I believe everyone has the right to think and believe whatever they want up to the point where they are infringing on same such right of others.

Unfortunately tis the season for elections, specifically the presidential election which always brings out the real crazies. Now see John and I are both moderates. He’s a moderate conservative and I’m a moderate liberal. We don’t agree on everything but we respect each others right to disagree. We agree on more than we disagree. Religion isn’t much different. He was raised Lutheran and is Christian and I’m an animist which, for those of you who weren’t paying attention, is a pagan spirituality. However as above we agree on more than we disagree.

Here’s the thing though. While I am a very accepting person I can not accept the raving lunacy I see coming from the extreme fringes. And I’m not pulling punches here, both sides are guilty as hell. As I’ve said before politics is all one big pile of BS with their hands in all the same pockets, just different flavors depending on what’s popular with their respective fringe at the time. And religion is a man-made construct. That which created us is far greater than us and we are limited by our human experiences and languages to try and define it and answer the primal questions. I don’t care if you call it God, Allah, Yahweh, Goddess, mother, father, or Frank. It’s more important THAT you believe than to get your panties in a twist because someone else calls it something differently than you do.

And yes, as I mentioned, it’s that time of year. And I keep hearing the term “war on religion” thrown around. Bullshit. When you try and force your religion on others, try to pass legislation to make your religion’s mandates the law for -everyone-, and then recoil and attack when those who do not agree protest then YOU are the problem. YOU are the warmonger. Please do us all a favor and either learn to behave yourself or retreat back to the rock from which you crawled out from.

And take your Tea with you, thanks.


Yeah, you heard that right, I’m fat. Been fat for a while now. Had lots of excuses for being fat. I’d blame the fibro, blame my lack of metabolism, blame yadda blame. But you know, I wasn’t always fat. Yes, I’ve got a large frame but I wasn’t always *fat*. And avoidance and denial do nothing but make it worse. Avoiding photos so I don’t have to see it doesn’t make it go away. My back hurts, my knees hurt, and honestly my health is an issue because I allow it to be. It’s not like I didn’t know what I needed to do.

So I’m seeing a new doctor. One that doesn’t make me want to scream. One that isn’t going to pump me full of pills.

I’m getting help for my digestion and metabolism and thyroid and adrenals and all that stuff that is currently pretty screwed up.

I am walking a mile a day, uphill.

John and I have Y memberships we haven’t used since we got them in May, so now we are going every Wednesday to swim.

I run up and down our stairs 4+ times a day because they’re there.

I joined a social network for exercising which, oddly enough, helps motivate me to get my ass out of this chair.

We do eat well, we do. Only eat out once a week and then it’s usually fish or chicken. We eat fish and veggies at home. No soda. No junk food.

When I was younger and healthy I weighed in at 175 lbs. That put my BMI at 26.6 which is a healthy range.

Right now, at my worst, I am 258 lbs and 39.2 BMI, which is bad. Let’s just say bad and leave it at that.

So the goal is to get back below BMI 30. For me that will be 197 lbs.

But I know that’s not enough. So the real goal is to get back below 180. That’s 78 lbs to lose.

I want to be healthy.
I want to not be so tired.
I want to not feel so old.
I want the energy to do fun things.
I want the energy to do even more fun things with John 😛
I want to not be so sore.
I want to be able to fit into nice clothes.
I want to not look like a cow in a wedding dress.

This is Week 1.

Because I care…

It has come to my attention that there are people out there who do not like me. I am truly crushed. I do not know how I will go on. And for those of you who know me well you just read that last line with my voice in your head with the perfect monotone of sarcasm in which it was intended.

So let me clarify a few things for those of you playing along at home.

I’m getting to the age where I care less and less what people think of me. There comes a point in your life where you figure out who you are and realize that it is far more important to be true to yourself than to try and be someone else in the feeble and fruitless attempt to please other people. I played that charade for many, many years and while I was so busy trying to make everyone else happy I was always miserable and at a loss, unsure of who I was and what I wanted.

I am me. Much like cilantro you’ll either love me or hate me. If you love me it’s probably because you are the same brand of snarky, sarcastic bitch I’ve become. If you hate me that’s ok too. We snarky sarcastic bitches need people to point and laugh at.

Here’s the thing though. I love people. All kinds of people. I give every person I meet the benefit of the doubt and do my damnedest to be nice to them. I’ve been known to bend over backwards for someone I’ve just met because I can and they needed something I could help them with. But we ALL have our limits. There are those people out there who, for whatever mental dysfunction they may have, take my being nice as being weak or whatever. So for those who proceed to abuse such presumption of kindness I have a list. There are a few surefire ways to get yourself on my list. So for your reading enjoyment I have collected some of them below.

I reserve the right to update this list without warning 😉

1. Bitches. Bitch is not gender exclusive. If I meet you and offer you a smile and a hello and all I get in response is a roll of the eyes and some bitchy snark, welcome to my list.

2. Askholes. If you are one of those people who is constantly asking for advice, help, assistance, etc, and I and those in my circle give you legitimate, honest advice and assistance, and you then proceed to go out and do the EXACT OPPOSITE of what advice you were given, you are an Askhole. Also note that we don’t want to hear you bitch and moan about how your chronic inability to make intelligent life choices sucks. Seriously, STFU.

3. The willfully ignorant. This is a fun one. I will write more on this particular peeve of mine in the future. There are people in this world who are ignorant for no other reason than that they were fed some line of BS at some point in their development or came to some harebrained conclusion on a topic and made absolutely no effort what so ever to educate themselves further. On the contrary, they have willfully elected to exclude any sort of information or education that may challenge this opinion. Often violently. And it’s not because the information wasn’t available. It isn’t because other people did not try to help the person educate themselves. It isn’t because they had some learning disability that prevented them from further education. No. It’s because they decided (often along with their fringe identity group) that the moon was made of cheese, the Bible says you should beat your wife, the Holocaust didn’t happen, or that AIDS isn’t a real disease. For the love of all that is effing holy pick up a goddamned book or read a newspaper or I dunno, maybe try talking to someone who isn’t as willfully ignorant as you are.

4. Racists, sexists, bigots, homophobes, etc. I spent many years as a D/SV advocate so I’m pretty good at picking up on the conversational cues with these. Please understand that once you’ve been identified as an “ist” pretty much anything else you say/do is going to be null and void with me. Harsh? Maybe. But try spending a few hours in a small room with an abuse victim and you may be a lot less lenient on these things as well.

5. Hypocrites. Don’t say one thing and do another. Just don’t freakin’ do it.

6. Abusers. Don’t abuse people, don’t abuse critters, don’t abuse the planet, etc. Again on the just don’t freakin’ do it.

The really unfortunate part is how many people end up on the list. Some days I seriously start to question my faith in humanity but then I encounter someone who is nice for no other reason than just to be a decent human being and remember that there are still good people out there. Like the guy who took my shopping cart to the cart corral the other day at Wegmans because he just happened to be going that way. Or the teenager who lags a few seconds behind his friends to hold a door open for someone. Simple, decent kind acts that remind me that maybe there’s hope.