Question…

Show of hands please!

Does anyone else pay for a monthly subscription to Netflix and is always scrolling thru the shows, movies, documentaries, whatever is available and constantly clicks on things to add to their Watch List but then, just, never actually watches anything?

Asking for a friend!

I need a maid.

How awesome would that be?

Someone to wake me up, bring me tea, remind me of my days agenda. My breakfast will be ready once I have showered and dressed.

The maid will do a quick curtsy and call me “ma’am”. I imagine a British accent. And a uniform.

OH! And one of those little hats!

She’ll do the dishes and fold my laundry. Dust the house

Feed Lulu treats. Feed ME treats.

How amazing would that be?!

Because I hate cleaning my house…and it’s just me!

I hate to cook! And those who know and love me KNOW I have a bad habit of turning on the stove and walking away. I’m not a bad cook. Just an absent minded one.

Though I do make a pretty tasty bowl of cereal! If I remember that milk has an expiration date. And use it BEFORE that date.

Yes!

A maid would be awesome!

Someone to watch over my erratic habits that, while adorable, are not good for me!

Like being wide awake till 4 am.

(I really need to get better at going to bed the same day I wake up.)

Someone to remind me to eat a decent meal at a decent time so I’m not stuffing my face at midnight because I was busy doing that writing thing I like to do and forgot to eat for several hours and NO chips and dip is NOT a real meal and I really need to stop feeding them to Lulu.

(Do you know I made a grilled cheese at 3am the other morning? Well…actually I made 2. A burnt one and then a not burnt one. My bad!)

It would just be nice to not have to be an adult anymore. Because this is not as fun as I was lead to believe it would be!

OH! Let’s go back to when I was 6! I got to play with knock-off Barbies. Someone else cleaned the house and did my laundry. (I never ran out of clean undies!) I was fed on a very regular basis some very good food. And someone else took care of my hair. What else could anyone want??

Okay. Know what this sounds like I need?

Less a maid and more a mother.

And that’s a huge HELL NO!

Had one.

Did not work out very well.

Left me with a lot more issues than just a dusty house and burnt pans. Left me with a running mental monolog that still causes me severe self esteem issues while I deal with my childish need for approval and an obsession with bacon.

(Mmmmm! Bacon!)

And honestly my hair is much cuter when I take care of it.

My sisters were always in charge of dressing me and keeping my hair out of my eyes.

Know how they did all of that?

Dressed me in boys jeans, polyester dress pants and men’s t-shirts in various shades of brown, green and navy.

Bad childhood memories are why the color navy makes my skin burn like holy water on Satan!

And we won’t discuss the massacre of what they did to my hair. Just this side of bald. Thank god it grew back.

And you all wonder why I am snottily meticulous when it comes to my being a fabulous Diva!

Grow up being told you are too chubby to wear cute clothes. That only Kmart has clothes that would fit you because they have a husky boys section. And no Pamela Plump you have too fat of feet for those cute shoes so here are some men’s sneakers.

Spend your childhood being reminded you aren’t pretty like your sisters so you don’t need pretty clothes. Not like anyone will want to date you. You just be quiet and your sisters will find some suitable things for you to wear. What?? Makeup?? Are you joking? Oh sweetie! That would be a waste on you. Pearls on a pig! No one is going to notice you anyway!

Whoa Nelly! Where the flying fuck did all of THAT come from?

Wasn’t I talking about wanting a maid?? (Scrolling back…yep! I was and then got derailed.Sigh!)

Yeah! Never mind! I’ve got this!

I am going to go do my dishes. Run a Swiffer duster-thingy over the visible dust particles. And pick up those dog toys I keep tripping over. (Three days in a row! Damn squeaky monkey!)

I am going to finish my laundry. Put away all my pretty clothes. And I will make sure all of my very cute shoes are hanging on the rack behind the door.

I’ll hit Pinterest for some new hair color ideas. (I am in love with this new burgundy color!)

Look at some makeup tutorials on Instagram because-well-MAKEUP!

And I will remind myself that I am an adult and I can get my rump to bed at a decent time for a change. AND make a decent meal without burning it.

AND…..

Remind myself that I am stronger than those memories. I am in control of who I want to be and how I want to dress and what dreams I want to chase while wearing fabulous shoes and not a damn stitch of navy in my wardrobe!

I will love myself because sometimes the people who were SUPPOSED to love me….forgot.

See? I do not need a maid after all!

I just need me!

Peace my lovelies!

Getting side-lined

I was politely yelled at by my friend Jon because I hadn’t published anything on my blog in a few weeks.

“Get with the writing,” he said. (Mainly because he keeps giving me story ideas and wants to see them written!) Then his wife told him to leave me alone because I had work to do. (Thank you, Sage!)

So…Karma! Hehehehe!

But that is kind of my problem.

Not Karma! I am chill with that.

It’s the “getting with the writing” thing.

We all have blocks and fears and worries and life. Things that keep us chained to a past we are trying so hard to walk away from.

Voices that remind you of each and every one of your spectacular failures.

Images of every misguided step you took flash through your mind like a movie on fast forward.

And you try, oh god above you try to shut the door on those moments.

Sometimes you succeed.

Sometimes you fail.

But all of the time…you try.

That is the important thing.

You try!

I need to remind myself that even though I set upon living this life of mine a specific way, with a specific goal, I am horrible at directions and got lost at some point! (I am easily distracted by shiny things and ice cream!) But even though I took a wrong turn here and there, and had moments of doubt and total breakdowns, I kept going. Not always in the right direction but I felt movement was better than sitting like a lump in the middle of the road.

Okay! Maybe I should have stopped and restarted my mental GPS but that seemed so boring!

I often imagine my guardian angel cracking open a vodka bottle and shrugging her shoulders going, “Let’s see what happens!” Then giggling like a hyena on crack.

But I was babbling with my sister-in-law about how I feel I am failing right now. Cyndee verbally slapped me upside the head with love! (And an eyeroll!) She proceeded to explain to me all of the things I have been doing recently that, while not a planned part of my goals to become a full time professional writer, are PART of the goals for me to become a full time professional writer.

I forget sometimes that life is all about balance. You do not always need to keep running amok trying to get things done just so you can tick things off some weird mental “To Do” list you have.

Sometimes you have to sit and be silent and just breathe.

Sometimes you have to stop doing, doing, doing and just kick back.

Relax.

Meditate.

Find that crazy inner hamster and tell it to stop racing on that damn squeaky wheel for an hour!

Then let everything go so that, in your silence, everything can come back to you.

I write a good game of how we each need to be strong in our selves and in our dreams. Most days I am riding that high of “I am Pamela and I am strong and talented! Hear me roar! Grrrr!”

I also get quickly reminded that I am human (despite some arguments to the contrary!) and I need to stop. I need to look around me. I need to find my place again on this weird road trip I am on. (And I need to pee often so there are always potty breaks planned!)

And I will “get with the writing!”

I always do come back to this…writing!

It is my constant. My Northern Star.

And no matter what zig or zag or u-turn I have taken in this life…it always comes back to my writing.

It is what I love. What I set out to do. What I AM doing! It’s my happy place!

Do not let the life you are living push aside the life you want to be LOVING.

It’s kitschy but it is also quite true, my lovelies.

No matter where life takes you or even how you got to this point in life, do one thing-

Find your bliss!

Find what makes you happy!

So fill in the blank of what would make your life more livable and lovable and “get with the __________!”

Slightly Annoyed!

I am sitting here in my little house at my little desk thinking not so little thoughts.

My mind is like a hungry mouse looking for cheese in a maze of long halls with blocked off exits. At some point, it simply said “Screw it!” and climbed over the walls and escaped!

I know what my mind is looking for….words. The pretty words. The right words. All of the pretty and right words that will all fit nicely onto a page and make pretty and nice stories.

But apparently today my brain has chosen to go on strike and all the pretty and right words are refusing to cross the picket line. Bastards!

So I do what I always do when nothing of quality comes to me.

I dabble.

I open all my works in progress (and there are a LOT of them!) and I just write a line here, change a phrase there, erase a paragraph over on that one…I do what I always do. I keep going at it.

And while I am struggling today, I was reminded by someone of supposed good intentions that maybe this was a mistake. Maybe I should not put my supposed talented eggs into this supposed merry little basket of stupid.

And maybe that person can bite me! I have enough disparate self doubt that I do not need any one’s help in that area. I know where my talents lay. I know what I can bring to the table.

Damn it to hell…

This little side show of mental button pushing reminded me of a piece of poetry by a man called Charles Bukowski. Personally-not a fan of his work. And this particular piece (called So You Want to Be a Writer) kind of, sort of, maybe pisses me off.

In this work of his, he goes on about what NOT to do. How if it is not done a certain way, or comes from a certain place within you, then you are not a writer and don’t write. Just don’t do it.

BULL-FUCKING-SHIT!

This is a piece that makes me angry and makes feel the need to prove this man wrong. And it MAKES me want to write. Because, at the end of his little “schpeel”, it does find some redemption in my minds’ eye.

He speaks that the need to write will “…drive you to madness…”, which is very true.

When it says that unless writing is like “…the sun inside you is burning your gut, don’t do it/when it is truly time and you are truly chosen, it will do it by its self and it will keep on doing it until you die or it dies in you…”

I do not know about that. I do know that there have been moments in my life when people have tried to kill off this part of me. Degraded, belittled, destroyed my work and my nearly manic need to put pen to paper. I watched them mock and ridicule and physically tear from my hands my work. I have seen their hate, felt their anger and been drenched by the sweat of their disdain for me. Those people where not good people in my life.

And sadly, at times, I was one of those people.

I let fear and doubt and the belief that it would never become anything topple my self esteem to ruble.

But then…

Then I realize that writing is, for me, the only thing that brings me peace. Joy. Laughter. Hope.

And god above, I have lost all of those things a dozen times over in my life. I have fallen and had to rebuild my life. I have lost faith in my God and my self. And each time I have been in a dark place in my life, it was when I took up my pen again that I found those very things that I needed.

Peace.

Joy.

Laughter.

Hope.

I will write when and how and where and what my very soul gives me to write. Some days I cannot keep up with the cacophony of words that swirl within me. Other days I cannot remember how to spell my own name.

But regardless of which place I am mentally or emotionally or spiritually, I will write! I will keep plucking away at those mental harp strings that influence and flutter those words within my soul.

I will search for words and the right turn of phrase till my last moment upon this sphere.

You see, for me, writing is the only thing that does not feel like a wasted endeavor.

I write when I am at peace or in a rage or when I am stressed or when I am asleep and I snap awake scrambling for a pen and paper to get something out of my head!

Writing is my northern star.

Writing is my salvation.

I will write how I see fit for me, not in the pretentious manner Mr. Bukowski seems to imagine only a true writer should write. Because only a true writer knows what works for them.

Do I plan to make a living at this and be able to be a success? Absofuckinglutly!

Please my lovelies, do not let the negative naysayers bring you down. Do not let the doubt or the stress or the worry eat away at what you are striving to become. What ever it is that drives you! What ever makes you get up and go forward and live the best life you can possibly live.

Remember! This is your life! Your choice! YOUR DREAM!

The haters can hate all they want but all they are doing is making themselves miserable. You are beyond their little voices and littler minds.

I will fight with teeth and nails till I am bloody and my manicure is chipped just to keep doing what I am doing!

I am a writer.

What are you?

Spinning…

When I was a little girl, I was very quiet. Honestly-if you asked anyone from my family they would talk about how quiet I was. But I lived in a very loud, overbearing home with people who all had something more important or demanding or interesting to say than I ever did. I was not the “squeaky wheel” demanding attention. I was usually found in a corner with my best friend, a collie named Lady, surrounded by notebooks and crayons writing stories, all while holding a knock-off Barbie doll.

So while everyone else was talking and arguing and being loud and disruptive, vying for attention, I was often told to be quiet if I did try to talk.

In fact I would get “shushed” for laughing.

To this day I tend to cover my mouth when I do laugh because, well, old habits die hard.

Why do I mention this?

Because I “shushed” myself today.

I did! In my own home! Where I live with just me and my dog!

I made myself be quiet!

Because as I said…old habits…

And what was I doing while I was laughing, and covering my mouth at the sound, and shutting myself up?

I was spinning in my chair.

Yes. You read that correctly.

I was sitting in my office and just had a wild moment of childish exuberance! The window was open. The sun was streaming in. I had a moment of giddyness! So I pushed my chair back from the desk and pushed myself off and spun my chair around! It was fun! And I did it again and again! After the 4th time, I realized that a good spin could turn me around 16 times till I slowed down. It was the 6th turn that made me realize I should defiantly NOT close my eyes while spinning. It was the start of the 8th turn when I slapped both hands over my mouth because I actually let out a true belly laugh! I actually looked around ready to be reprimanded before I caught myself.

The only people looking were a rather befuddled Lulu, my stuffed monkey and Executive Assistant Mr. Skittles and my Mr. Spock bear whose paw plays the Star Trek theme song when you press it. None of these beings were judging me, though Mr. Skittles did seem to look at me a little cock-eyed. (But that may have only been because Lulu was chewing on his head the other day. I don’t think he has recovered from that indignity.)

But the problem is the fact…I “shushed” myself.

One would think at this point in my life I would be over the weirdness of my childhood.

One would think so, but one would be wrong.

I still have little ticks and quirks that are carryovers from growing up in that old house on 6th avenue.

I still sweep towards the back door in the kitchen, because according to my Mama you did that to sweep out the bad thoughts as well as the dirt. I always move ladybugs back outside if I find one in the house after I count their spots and I always wish them a safe trip because if you do that, the number of spots is the number of months of blessings you will have.  I never move from one home to another with any unused flour packed because that would mean bringing bad energy from the old kitchen into your new kitchen and your biscuits will turn out flat and tasteless. I always leave one box unpacked when I move from one place to another so as not to jinx the new home. I never walk over anyone laying on the floor because that would cut their life line if you did. Trust me-honestly-I do not walk over Lulu! I walk around her! (But, when Mama wasn’t looking, I used to walk over my siblings when they were laying all over the floor. Bad Pammy!)

And….I still put a hand over my mouth when I laugh because I was told I was too loud and it was not lady like and no one likes a girl who “guffaws.”

Why would someone say that to a child?

I was just finding my own corner of joy in that house.

But the fact I still carry that quirk with me today is just…nuts.

Life is such a gift! We all have enough rough patches to get through on a daily basis! We need to stop berating ourselves for childish misdeeds and perceived bad behavior.

I laugh out loud when I am spinning in my chair. I cry at commercials for animal rescue groups. I wish on stars by saying that little poem “I wish I may, I wish I might”. I am gleefully awe-struck by fireworks. I love to stand in the rain, especially if it’s warm and I am barefoot. I find peace in a gentle snowfall during the night. I think Santa and the Easter Bunny are friends and hang out on their off seasons. And I truly believe that my Baby Girl Lulu understands every word I say to her but just randomly chooses what she will and will not acknowledge.

But mostly, I need to remember that it is completely OK to be myself. Especially when I am alone! I need to stop listening to that voice in my head that has a hint of a southern accent telling me what not to do. That voice stopped speaking a long time ago. I need to stop listening to its fading echo.

And those old habits need to be turned into new, better, exciting habits!

My wish for all of you, my lovelies, is to find something to laugh about. And truly do laugh! With joy and abandon and guffaws! Don’t hide your smile! Don’t hide who you are! Don’t listen to those old voices in your head.

Each of us deserves a new voice! Our own voice telling us how wonderful and loved and amazing we are! THAT is the echo I want each of you to listen to!

And I also highly recommend taking your chair for a few spins!

Bothersome….

Do you have a word that bugs the bejesus out of you? I have a couple that do, but there has been one particular word of late that seems to bother me more than others.

It’s a simple word really.

But in most contexts it is a word of control. People say this word to tell you what to do, what to be. You say this word to yourself and it makes you second guess and question and doubt. It’s a word connected with an action THEY think you need to do.

It’s the word “should”.

You “should” do this thing over here. You “should” go to that place over there. You “shouldn’t” do this, or “shouldn’t” wear that, or “should” think this way, or “should” have this job, or “should” be, “shouldn’t” be.

“Should” is CRAP! It’s a word filled with soul crushing negativity most of the time.

“Should” becomes a long line of expectations about what your life was supposed to be if you had only listened to everyone else’s opinion. If you had followed someone else’s advice, plan, dictation for your person. Even your own doubts and failures and worries circle around the word “should”.

It needs to stop being such a major word in our vocabulary. Our mindset.

I think “should” becomes a list in our head of things we missed out on or were too frightened to do. Silly expectations when we need to stay positive and not think of the “should have’s” in life.

My friend Jon said it well-It’s a word that is meant to fulfill others expectations and not your own.

I am tired of other people dictating to me what I am supposed to do. What I “should” be. Because those people do not know me! They have never truly seen my heart nor have they had a notion of what I want in this life. And they seem to think I should be grateful to them and appreciative of their opinions because they graciously took notice of me. Fuck that!

An example of how this word can be negative popped up tonight. I was texting with my sister-in-law Cyndee and she mentioned she had eaten her latest recipe creation for dinner and felt like she was in a sugar coma. And I immediately told her she SHOULD take a walk to work it out of her system.

SCREECH! What the fuck? Why was I saying this? Why was I (unintentionally!) shaming her? She did not ask my opinion. She did not say she wanted to find a solution to the deep tiredness she was feeling. She simply wanted to take a nap. Seriously-when is a nap ever a bad idea?

I apologized to her for just assuming she wanted my advice on how to deal with an issue that was not an actual issue at all. She ate poorly and was reaping the consequences of it. We have all done this! I do it frequently! (Hello Cheetos!) And what did I do other then empathize? Told her “you should…”

I detest when people do this to me and yet I made a snap decision and did the very thing I hate, to her.

“Should” is one of the reasons I made some pretty bad life choices. When I was younger and less fabulous than I am now, I overheard a conversation between my Mama and one of my sisters. And Mama said that “Pammy Ann should just stay here at home till she is 40 or 50. She should just do what we tell her and be done with this nonsense she has of leaving home.”

Well, Pammy Ann went into total panic mode because (should she listen to her Mama!) all she could envision for herself was living like the lady down the street who was in her 40’s and still lived with her parents and wore handmade clothes and worked the same dull job at the same dull office she had worked at since she was 18 and took the same lunch in the same brown paper bag every day and she and her mom would run outside and take brooms to the squirrels in their yard who tried to steal the walnuts that fell to the ground from their walnut tree and her dad would scurry around and make them fill buckets with all these stupid walnuts and take them into the house and all I could imagine was a house filled floor to ceiling with buckets of nuts and why couldn’t the squirrels have them and oh my fucking god I would go crazy like the Squirrel Lady if I did what I “should” do and just live with my parents for the rest of my life!

AAARRRGGGHHH!!! (What followed was more than a decade filled with a bad marriage, bad clothes and even badder hair. I still have nightmares about that hair!)

“Should” should not be in your repertoire of verbiage. Try going through your day without telling someone what they “should” do. And by “someone” I mean you, too.

If you feel the need to tell someone what you think they should do, please, present it as a suggestion. With a light of positive shining on it! Not a finger-pointing demand that they follow your dictate of what YOU think it best for them. Instead of “you should do…” what about asking them if they had tried another line of thinking?

And if you are going to use that word on your self-Holy Negative Nellie, Batman! Please! Be kind to yourself!! Instead of a negative thought like “well I missed out. I should have studied a foreign language in school. Boo hoo!” Say, “You know what? I should learn a language!” And then follow through on your suggestion and change that should too WILL.

Life is too hard to live with “should haves” clouding our hearts and minds. It becomes a fog, a road block to the good and positive things just waiting for us!

I encourage all of you, my lovelies, to be kind to one another and be even more kind to yourself.

I am being ignored…

…by my Baby Girl Lulu. Apparently I do not smell as fascinating as bunnies under the deck.

I will take that as a compliment!047

It’s a beautiful morning out in my back yard. Lulu has yet to piddle because of the afore-mentioned sniffing expedition. The sun is shining and I am….

Well I don’t know what I am!

Not bored. Not worried. Not excited. Not over whelmed.

Just “whelmed” I suppose. Is that an emotion? It should be!

I am not in a dramatic emotional position what-so-ever. I simply am.
And that is an okay place to be.

I deal with so much mental chatter most days that having a morning filled with mental nothing is a relief.

I am not being mentally assaulted by every thought, action, image, memory, or detail of a thousand different moments in my life all at once. I am simply enjoying the moment. Enjoying Lulu’s sniffing and snuffling. Enjoying the breeze. Enjoying the sun. Enjoying the mental peace and quiet.

I suppose this seems odd for some of you. That a quiet moment would mean so much. But know this about me. I deal with excruciating anxiety and depression on a daily basis. I am in a constant mental state of “battle readiness.”

And fuck me if this ain’t tiring as hell!!

Before you ask-yes I am on meds. Yes I have seen a therapist. Yes it all has been a tremendous help. But for those in the “know” it is still a daily barrage of thoughts and panic and fear. A struggle to control our minds and maintain a sense of self that is not defined by past abuse or actions.

Most days that’s a success. Some days it is a massive failure.
But it is those in-between days that I relish. The days of nothing. The days when I smile because I am genuinely happy. Am tired because I was busy and it was physical exhaustion that made me want a nap not mental exhaustion.

Those are becoming my “norm” thankfully. As long as I remember to take the medication I am prescribed. That seems like a “duh” thing to remember. Yet-I forgot to do that. I was so cavalier about the fact I was feeling so amazing that I stopped taking my antidepressant.

Stupid egotistical move.

You see, I was only able to control the panic attacks because the depression was under control. Lose one fail safe and the whole thing blows up.

It did too!!  BOOM!

Massive panic attack. I had not had one in so many weeks and was feeling so confident and dare I say “cocky” that I just assumed I was cured. (BAHAHAHAH!!)

That’s a negatory good buddy!!

I know better now. I have wonderful people in my life who have been so strong for me when I could not be. I am surrounding myself with calm and peace and joy. And my medication! And Lulu!

It’s not the crutch I feared it would be. It’s a walking stick to help me navigate the sidewalks of my mental state. There when I need to lean on it but mostly decorative to make me even more fabulous! Most days I do not need the extra medication for when the panic attacks start to build, I am stable and good to go with just the antidepressant. But it is there when I do need it. A safety net. Trust me my lovelies, we all need a net to fall into sometimes.
So here I am!

Enjoying this amazing morning with my Baby Girl! Relaxing in the calm and love I feel for myself.

And I shall steal a Cookie Monster quote and make it work for me:
Me will enjoy this quiet interlude while me is outside watching Lulu run back and forth sniffing for bunnies.

Now me wants cookies!

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