I’m looking California and feeling Minnesota

 

At 6:58 am, my phone rang. I could tell by the Mariachi music that it was my not-biological-but-pretty-much brother. I’ve curated a family that is no kin to me to make up for the one genetics left me with. I promise you, the Build Your Own Family Adventure is totally worth it.

I was wrist deep in biscuit dough and drowning in breakfast prep so I had to let his call go to voicemail. When I was able I shot him a text to ask what was up. During the waiting between my text and him returning my call, I found out that Chris Cornell had died. When we got on the phone finally, that was the reason for the call.

It was by accident that I found Soundgarden in middle school. I think it was swapping CDs on the band bus when Superunknown found it’s way into my ears. It quickly became one of my frequently played albums. Even when I bounced around, experimenting with genres of music (yeah, I was totally into nu-metal for a long while) Soundgarden and their grunge brethren were with me. When Audioslave hit, I was instantly in love. There were many, many time Chris Cornell and his four-octave vocals held my hand, iced my burns, and sang me to sleep.

It seemed like the news that it was suicide hit as fast and as hard as his death did. Reports seem split on if he had exhibited signs of depression or not. The trouble with depression is that for a lot of us, the “signs” have been around so long they’ve just become who we are. So often we hide behind a mask so thick, it hides our struggle from even those closest to us.

I can’t speak for Chris, I only know my own story. But I know that hiding your true struggles becomes an art form. We live in a world where mental illness is constantly second guessed and made light of. There’s still this stigma that hangs over us. Tell someone you broke your arm and they say go to the doctor. Tell them you feel depressed and they ask if you’ve tried just feeling better. As if it was that simple.

If you’re fighting that fight, please know you aren’t alone. It’s easy to feel that way. At times it’s comforting.But these are not battles you have to wage alone. There are people there to help you.  National Suicide Prevention Hotline is available 24 hours a day online and on the phone (1-800-273-8255).  Here is a link from PsychCentral with numbers for hotlines that specialize various issues.

You are not alone in this. Needing help is not weakness. Asking for help is one of the strongest things you can do. Let’s support each other. 

Now please excuse me while I damage my hearing by blasting some Soundgarden/Audioslave/Temple of the Dog.

Life, Death, and pictures on the Internet

The internet is a weird thing.

At it’s core, its a bunch of zeros and ones, arranged together in sequence, making something out of nothing. I can’t really explain how it all works. It’s all way beyond my realm of understanding. What I do know about the internet though, is that it can bring people together.

Let’s start at the beginning.

Half a million years ago, you know when Myspace was popular, I was a brand new adult discovering the world of body acceptance. I had always been the “ugly fat” girl. My mother started me on the path and the kids at school picked it up and ran. I never had good feelings about my body or my looks.  So after marrying my husband and having my first child, I realized, maybe that’s not who I was. Maybe , you know, I actually might be pretty. Somehow, I stumbled upon the world of online modeling. There was a site that was for plus size pin ups. I knew as soon as I saw the website and the ladies featured I wanted to be part of it. Luckily enough, after applying, I was accepted. And it was so much fun. It help bolstered my self love and helped me unveil my sexuality. More importantly, it gave me a wonderful group of lady friends. The type of friends I never really knew existed.

Friendships never were my strong point. When you’re raised by a paranoid narcissistic, you learn that the basic set up of the world is  “Us vs THEM”. If you weren’t genetically related to us (and sometimes if you were), if you disagreed with us (and sometimes if you didn’t), if you did better than us (or if you did worse) you were in the THEM camp. This fucked up mentality stuck with me until I clicked with these wonder women online. We were all different, but we were all the same too. We disagreed on somethings, and agreed on others. We walked different paths with different steps, but were still able to hold hands. The feelings of love and support was new and amazing and, I’m not shitting you here, changed my life.

As it does, time moved on. We all did our own thing and Myspace died at the murderous hands of Facebook. Our group of friends faced real life challenges and adventures. Marriages, divorces, births, deaths, relocations, and stagnations. We drifted then found each other. We lived our lives. We shared our stories. We loved each other.

Recently, one of my close lady friends from that group passed away. We were never able to met in person and, as the good ole Southern phrase goes, hug each others neck. But we were close. She watched my babies become kids, I watched her kids become men. We laughed, we cried, we lived. We exchanged letters and stories, gifts for the kids. We swapped clothes. We were sisters. And it was and will forever be on the of most important relationships of my life.

So here’s to my favorite pirate mama. Way the wind always blow you to where you need to go. We’re going to meet again and when we do, I’m going to hug you for a good long while. Thank you for showing me and my scallawags a love we didnt know existed. You helped teach me that a true family is the one you make for yourself. You were a beautiful radiant star that blessed us all. You helped make me a better person. I will always hold you in my heart and take you with me on my travels.

Rest easy, beautiful. You are so loved.

BBBBBB

How old do you have to be…

howold

I mean seriously, what the fuck is going on? I honestly thought by the time I reached my 30s I’d be an “adult” and I’d know what everything was and how everything worked. I had always gotten the impression as a child that anyone over the age of 29 was a certified pro in adulting.  For the pass few years Ive been waiting on that feeling to hit me. Like puberty for the soul. And it hasn’t! I thought by now I’d be some serious woman who knows the ins and outs of every situation. I’d be all newspaper and political reform, town meetings and stock indexes. I’d know how the world works and what mature decisions to make.

Spoiler alert: I don’t know shit. I almost have no clue what the fuck is going on. I know things are about to take a nasty turn here in America. I dont understand how we’ve gotten this far. Or how exactly when people forgot about being brothers with their fellow man. That , especially right now, is common. I’m just…still so unsure about everything. I keep looking around for an adult to help talk me through disarming this life bomb. But there aren’t any, and Im stuck with all these wires and only one that can be cut.

wires

I take care of my shit. I raise my babies and wife my husband. But most of the time, I’d rather be curled up somewhere cerebrum in superheroes and scary stories. Sometimes I can’t handle how mean people are. How obsessed with themselves and petty they seem. I have trouble understanding the speed at which this life machine works. A few months can feel like forever but then years pass in a blink. How are we suppose to survive if the cards just keep staking against us?

When will all this nonsense make sense?

Maybe the key question is: Is there any sense to make out of all this?

Previously on Legos and Coffee,

I attempted a blog challenge. I posted about it here. Obviously, it was a failure since I took a year long sabbatical and never came back. I think a lot had to do with the fact that I committed to doing it without fully falling in love with it. Looking back now, I am not fond of the prompts themselves. It feels….shallow? After doing this list, I might overhaul the entire idea and start again. But I’ll at least try to get through this one thing. It was my goal, so I’m going to do it.

 Let’s start back where I left off and give it another go.

So let’s say today is day 11 and the prompt is “List 15 of your favorite things”. Why they didn’t have it be “List 11 of your favorite things” seems like a miss to me.

  • Coffee. In all forms. From black with sweetener to superkalifraglistic from Starbucks. I don’t care what you think about my coffee order, so shhhh. Just put it in me.
  • Used Books. I really love reading a book that’s already been loved. I love the feeling of a well worn novel. Also it saves money and keeps stories alive.
  • Professional Wrestling. I’m a mark. I’ve watched since I was a little kid. My dad, who Im sure will be the subject of a few post in the future, was an indie wrestler when I was a child. We’d travel to sweaty gyms, set up a ring, and do shows. It’s still something that I love. I don’t care if it’s “fake”. It’s still real to me dammit!
  • Incense and wax melts. Nothing changes my mood faster than to make my area smell nice.
  • Late 90s-Early 00s Rock. It was my coming of age music. What can I say?
  • Podcasts! Dude, I love me some podcasts. In the last year or so, i discovered the concept of podcasting and fell in love. I religiously listen to Tanis, Rabbits, Welcome to Night Vale, What Happened When, and Something to Wrestle with Bruce Prichard. I really wish The Black Tapes would come back. I miss it so much.
  • Gravity Falls. Its a constant in our rotation of shows. Its like animated X-Files.
  • Instagram. Yep, Im one of those people. I try to post more than just selfies. I dont always accomplish a respectable stuff to selfie ratio though.
  • Sewing. Its become one of my favorite ways to create. Ive hit a lull recently. I made the mistake of linking my enjoyment of sewing to my ability to sell things Ive made. I need to fix that.
  • The Denver Broncos. I was never much of a football fan growing up. I knew little to nothing about it. My husband however, is a huge Broncos fan and has this huge wealth of football knowledge. So I decided instead of being one of those people that sit around and pout when their SO watches sports, I’d learn about it so I could watch with him. And I have. And the Broncos are my time. Which is slightly hilarious considering I live in the thick of the team they beat recently in the Super Bowl.
  • Milkshakes. They are glorious
  • Lists. I typically enjoy making list. They bring me some  sense of control. This one however, is kicking my ass.
  • The Blues Brothers. Always.  I love that damn movie so much.
  • My family. My husband is easily my best friend. I’m honored to have the kids I have. I’ve filled the gaps with people who love me.  I’m a lucky person.

Ya know what? I think I’m done with this list. Look, I have a lot of favorite things. Listing them here seems so redundant. I know the point is to “get to know” me better, but this isn’t fun. Like I said above, Im going to need to overhaul this whole thing. I want writing here to be a release, not another thing that stresses me. And for some reason, this list stresses.

So, there’s that. I’ll figure something out. Something enjoyable for me and for you, the reader.

You see, what had happened was…

I fucking suck.

Here’s the deal. I always have these ideas in my head of things I want to do. But there’s this thing inside of my head that prevents me from doing things I like to do. I start and notice how much enjoyment they bring me and I get totally on board with them and then, BOOM. The feelings start. Like old friends that forget you until they need something, they show up. Suddenly, the my inner monologue is being delivered by my mother’s voice and I realize that I’m not good at what I’m doing. I realize that I’m taking time away from my motherly and wifely duties by doing my things. So, I bury a seed in the shame I cultivate inside and stop doing my thing to watch it bloom. Who would have guessed that seed grows into a Venus fly trap and tries to eat me whole?

free-venus-fly-trap-plant-image-thm-graphicsfairy

 

It’s a constant struggle. Most times, I give in and accept that I am not good enough to warrant doing anything. Why bother when I’ll just fail? Do you know how many things I’ve missed out on because of this? So fucking many.

Guys, I’ve got more issues than something that has a lot of issues. I’m a mess. But still, I try. And right now, I’m plucking those teeth from my skin and getting ready to try again. I need to focus on the things that set my soul on fire.  I need to focus on me.

A blog where I talk about myself sounds like a a good idea.

So let’s do this, again.