day twenty four: swimming against the current, or trying not to drown

Image by Property#1 via Flickr

I have come to realize that dealing with depression is similar to being sucked into a riptide.  No matter how hard you try, no matter how hard you may thrash you are not escaping that way.  The problem with depression is that you can get sucked into a dark and sightless pit of despair before you even realize it. your only hope is that someone will pull you out before you exhaust yourself. I hope  help is coming because I’m getting pretty tired.


Day twenty three: waiting… it never seems to end

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Have you ever felt like the minutes in your life serve no greater purpose than to lie in a heap the bottom of an hourglass?  That is how I feel right now.  I’m  waiting to get my cart fixed.I’m waiting to see if an endeavor I started at the beginning of the year bears the fruit I hope it will.  I’m waiting to see if I got played false once again or if I turn out happier than I ever thought possible. I’m trying to be optimistic on that one but I’m pretty sure I’m not doing so well.  While I’m waiting the minutes of my life seem to pass me by like grains of sand passing from one end of the timer to another.  I watch them fall but can only grasp aat tiny handfuls only to have them leak through my fingers almost before I can blink.  The question I find myself asking is this: is a life spent waiting on certain conditions to be met any life at all?  After a quarter of a century I still have no definitive answer.  What do you think?

Day twenty two:Fireworks

A small unprepossessing horse, or so you might believe.  My friends, there you would be sadly mistaken.  Inside the small package is the heart and will of a harness racer.  Even after two broken legs I would not trade him for all the money you could ever pay me.  He will carry me out of the darkness with which I currently struggle.He will be the brightest burning star in the country if  I have anything whatsoever to say about it.  I believe in him and his ability to go as far as any miniature horse ever has.  I will become somebody I might never have had the chance to be otherwise. People will see me as the firework and even though I know that he is just making me look good I will let them keep their delusions.

day twenty one: lessons learned from a pair of glasses

A modern pair of prescription glasses with a h...
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I have always called myself Evil Knievel in a wheelchair,I tried to prove in September of last year.There is a blog post about it if you want the full story  My glasses went flying, miraculously when we found them  they  were not damaged, which is more than I can say for myself.  I bought those glasses a year and a half before the accident so this was not their first go around with abuse at my hands, though perhaps it was the most traumatic.  Almost six months later I’m still wearing them. When I bought these glasses I bought them for what might seem like a silly reason.  The earpieces are decorated with amber colored rivet type things, which are pretty close to the color of my best friends birthstone.  I spent hours looking for just the right pair and just as I was about to give up I found them.I have learned a lot from these unique frames.  No matter how bent, broken, or abused you might feel  you can almost always come back stronger.   I broke my legs and my cart but I still have my horse and he has the biggest heart I have ever seen in such a little horse.  I believe in him more than I believe in any human being on the planet, save one.  Together we can and will achieve great things.  I will not lay down  and die just because life takes a swing at me and happens to connect.  That is the lesson I learned from my glasses. I feel obliged to point out that the glasses in the picture are not mine.  Mine are much cooler

day twenty one: a new understanding of arranged marriages

arranged marriage
Image by via Flickr

Use the phrase arranged marriages and say it in a positive manner and most modern people will gasp in shock and even if they’re polite enough not to say out loud most of them will probably be horrified that you would even suggest such an antiquated practice has merit.  I’m not saying that in some ways the idea isn’t horribly old-fashioned and outdated, in most cases it is.  I am merely saying that due to my unique circumstances I can easily understand why marriage used to be more about economics than emotion.Perhaps explaining my particular situation might help in understanding  my viewpoint.I am 25 years old and disabled.  In theory I can hold down a job of some sort, there is absolutely nothing wrong with my ability to think and communicate with other people.  In practice however, I have discovered that finding a job that I can accomplish in spite of my physical limitations and, more importantly finding a person who is willing to take the risk of giving me a job, is much harder than I was initially led to believe.  I’m currently working on a manuscript which although I have already put hours of work into it, is still nowhere near ready to see an editors desk.  Thereby if I wish start a relationship which will (hopefully) be long term one of the main considerations that goes through my head is can “insert perspective boyfriend’s name here” support two people with the income generated from his current job.I immediately f feel ashamed for giving voice to the thought,even though it is only in my head.  We are taught as children especially girls that nothing but love matters.  I have begun to see that that is a fallacy.  Love can conquer a lot of things, this is true.  I know from personal experience however there are many things that love, by itself cannot overcome no matter how much  people may wish otherwise.Love by itself cannot and does not guarantee security or a safe place to live. Love by itself can’t make sure that someone is able to eat their next meal.  You can love someone with all your heart and still be prevented from taking care of them.  Trust me,I’ve had experience with that one.

During the Regency Era and earlier economics was the prime motivation and consideration for women when getting married.  Since women were not allowed to hold jobs it was essential that whomever they married and be able to provide for them, in other words, they and their families had every reason and right to be picky.  I find it sad that our modern culture for the most part seems to frown on women who consider financial stability alongside of and sometimes slightly before emotion.  Some of us still do not have much of a choice.

day twenty: “you seem a decent fellow, I hate to kill you,” or exploring human nature with the help of Yoda, The Princess Bride, and Jason Gideon

Princess Bride group
Image by sushi the great via Flickr

For those of you who are unaware, the quote in the blog title is from the 1987 movie The Princess Bride. The line itself was spoken by one of the main characters,Inigo Montoya, a Spaniard whose sole mission in life is to search for the six fingered man who murdered his father in front of him while still a child. Inigo, while undeniably a very purposeful and driven person also strives for honor even when he has been hired as a thug by a criminal mastermind, or at least a person who thinks he is.  Yoda was very careful to teach Luke Skywalker the importance of the controlling his fear, because as I’m sure most of us remember hearing,”fear leads to anger, anger leads to hate, hate leads to suffering.” A lesson to remember folks: truth may come from anywhere even from the mouth of a Muppet.When the ideas that eventually became fodder for this posting were bouncing off the walls of my brain  it did not occur to me at the time that two of the referenced characters were actually played by the same person. Both Inigo Montoya and Jason Gideon are played by the same actor.  I have always appreciated Mandy Patinkin work as an actor.I especially enjoy the series Criminal Minds in when he played FBI profiler Jason Gideon for a few seasons. The FBI can very easily be perceived as “big Brother”, watching us and making sure we don’t step out of line.  Jason and his team serve the purpose of humanizing the real-life FBI while doing the same thing to the fictional criminals they help catch.  Logically most people are aware that if something really bad happens Gideon & Co. are not going to show up at the door for real, but people who have skills and knowledge very similar to those portrayed on this show very well might. Hopefully if the  real FBI ever show up at someone’s door they will be at least slightly more willing to help because of the show.  I’ve come to the conclusion that most people, even the ones who eventually  go on to do awful things were once fairly decent people. I grant that people like Charles Manson were most likely nut jobs from the start, but if you really wish to know my opinion on people like him, I personally believe that they were born without a soul.  That’s a whole post by itself.  The thing to remember is that life is stressful, treat people with as much kindness as you’re able. You never know when your act of kindness might keep someone from turning into a monster.

day nineteen: the mask that is Southern hospitality… or how to be a racist and get away with it

Phantom Mask
Image by sjsharktank via Flickr

Regular readers of this blog might well remember that I have written a few posts about a dear friend who lives in Turkey.  What you may not realize is that I’ve have an ongoing disagreement with my grandmother centering around my desire to become fluent in Turkish. Why you may ask  should my grandmother even feel entitled to having a say about how I choose to further my own education.The short answer dear friends is that she should not, at the age of 25 most people would say that I have earned the right to be the architect of my own life or the most part.  However because she was originally listed as the executor of a trust fund my great-grandfather originally set up for me, even though I have long since past the age at which I gained sole control over it she oftentimes chooses to ignore that fact and only remember it when she feels it is convenient.I first requested the Rosetta Stone Turkish program almost 3 years ago now when my friend originally invited me to attend his wedding in the reasonably near future  My friend is college-educated and has more than a fair grasp of the English language as does his fiancée but it is also a reasonable assumption that the older members of his family, grandparents etc. may not. I refuse to be present at such an important event in my friend’s life  and not be able to converse well with all his extended family,whether they speak English or not, to do otherwise would be rude and disrespectful to him and his family.  My grandmother helped raise me, she taught me to be polite and considerate of everyone’s feelings, in spite of race, creed, or color.  However since 9/11I believe that in her fear of things unknown she has internally given herself permission to be  just a little less fair to people of Middle Eastern descent The Rosetta Stone computer program costs only about a hundred bucks. Since my original request she has agreed let me use my money to buy a special hand driven bike and a papered Miniature Horse and yet refuses adamantly a simple piece of language learning software, which I can assure you costs far less then either of the previously mentioned items did.  She says she won’t because learning Turkish has no practical application in today’s job market. So far my response that Middle Eastern languages are second  in the demand for interpreters only to Chinese, a fact which I know to be true because it came out of the mouth of a very well-respected professor in the language department of the University which I used to attend, has fallen on  ears. I am left to draw one conclusion, my grandmother, a woman who in most cases would give you the shirt off her back or the last piece of food in her refrigerator, is, at least subconsciously a racist.  Andrew Lloyd Webber is correct I suppose.We all wear masks, the most painful thing some of us will ever have to do is uncover the truth hidden behind them.

day eighteen: sometimes I think I should just shut up,or why I’m considering a vow of silence

Monk in Tashilhunpo
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Some people are good at  being single.  They are so confident within themselves that being alone/living alone doesn’t seem to bother them at all because fortunately for them they do not view their status as a reflection of their inherent self-worth.  My sister is one of the people who can lay claim to this, there is absolutely nothing wrong with her self-esteem and self image.  I unfortunately cannot claim the same self-confidence.  I am not one of those people seems to make friends at the drop of a hat just because I happen to be somewhere people congregate on a regular basis.  I know this.  That’s why on the relatively rare occasions someone does show interest in me and find myself hoping that I don’t screw up because I can’t stand staring at this blank piece of my life.  That is my downfall, the tripwire I seem to have built into every failed relationship attempt, my Achilles’ heel.  I try too hard.  I consistently get my hopes up way too soon.  Yes I know that’s not a good idea, I am aware that unrealistic expectations and pushing things too fast is a sure way to get one or both parties hurt.  What I should explain is that even though I know this it is almost as though I have to get that excited in order to have any confidence at all. I suppose the thing to do is not voice the excitement right a way.

Squirrel Appreciation Day

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That’s right folks… today or yesterday depending on when you read this is/was squirrel appreciation Day.  The day when we have to admit that even though they may eat our strawberries, irritate our dogs beyond belief, and dive bomb our heads with assorted varieties of nuts,they are pretty cute, the pests.

Day sixteen: why playground rules should apply to “real” adult life

Kids Playing at Childrens Playground Ship
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I woke up on the wrong side of the bed this morning, I admit it.  The sky has been the color of steel wool all day and I was so not looking forward to therapy that afternoon. I went anyway  When you insist on playing hard you must except the consequences which will very likely follow.  I am now thoroughly sure in case anyone is interested  Mom and I drove there and freezing rain and when we exited an hour later it had started to snow.  While getting into the car my knee got wrenched, as if I wasn’t sore enough already.  We got home end in the time it took us to drive there the ground was almost completely white.  We couldn’t get the car all the way into the driveway. I managed not to fall into the snow despite my messed leg.  However I am still sitting here three hours later with a heating pad across my lap trying to thaw out and wishing that the concept of a “do over” really worked outside of fifth grade recess.