Lapsing

Lapsed. I’m lapsing. I’ve lapsed. From nearly everything.

Lapsed seamstress. Lapsed writer. Lapsed knitter. Lapsed runner. Lapsed cello practicer. Lapsed student. Lapsed lover. Lapsed homemaker. Lapsed housecleaner (Actually, this one gets many lapses in one: Lapsed duster, lapsed bathroom scrubber, lapsed dishwasher, lapsed vacuumer, lapsed mopper, lapsed ironer). Lapsed makeup wearer. Lapsed friend caller. Lapsed snappy dresser. Lapsed reader. Lapsed photographer. Lapsed French and Spanish student. Lapsed cook. Lapsed popcorn-maker. Lapsed wit (I’d like to think I’m a lapsed half-wit because that would imply I was getting smarter). Lapsed activist. Lapsed memory. Lapsed. Simply lapsed.

I can’t really call myself a lapsed sleeper because I’ve been insomniac for two decades now, so it’s a permanent condition. I could only say I’m a lapsed insomniac if I were to start sleeping regularly. I also can’t call myself a lapsed laundry folder because I’ve always been abysmal at that too.

Thankfully, I have not lapsed in tooth care, keeping my body clean, or playing with my children or dog, although sometimes I wish I could lapse on these things too. I skipped a shower yesterday, and could barely contain my desire to jump in the shower this morning. An itchy scalp makes me bananas. I hope I’m never a prisoner of war or part of some other catastrophe that keeps me from being able to wash.

Maybe it’s my hair that has me so stuck, so unalive, so lapsed. I heard someone say in a movie that you should not keep the same hairstyle for decades, but I have not followed this rule. I’ve made forays into other hair places, but I always veer back because the texture of my hair is so inflexible when it comes to hairstyle variety, at least if I want to look moderately presentable, that I end up drifting back into blow-dried straight, shoulder-length hair. It doesn’t do well with layers, mainly because it’s really actually curly and layers turn me into a square head, which is so unattractive. Bangs. Those stick out straight in front and I look like I’m giving trailer girls circa 1985 a run for their hairstyle money. Again, it’s because I’m mostly curly. That’s the other thing. I’ve tried Gresham…er…curly, but I think because I blowdry straight every other day, some of the strands have become straight, so I end up with some parts curly, some parts bent funny, and the rest frizzy. Ugly. Ugh. Hence, no hair style change. Most days, it’s in a ponytail. I look the same all the time and this is boring. Just like me.

Tag: Motivation, lack thereof. There isn’t one of those, but perhaps there ought to be.

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Thinking About Flora

As I sat in the drive through lane at Starbucks the other day I noticed that someone had tossed a used Starbucks cup in the Laurel bush planted in the corner around which drivers drove from the order sign to the pickup window.  I sat there mulling over that plant, wondering what it thought of being used as a trash can for someone, then thought further about plants in general and where humans choose to place them. Plants have little choice in where to be.  They germinate where their seeds land or they live in the pot or on the corner where humans place them, and that’s just their lot in life.

I wonder if plants have a hierarchy among themselves.  You got planted in a Starbucks drive through, I got planted on the edge of the governor’s mansion. Aren’t I the lucky one? But of course, this is a human construct, this version of higher in the hierarchy. In plant terms, maybe it’s totally different. You got planted in shallow soil with little drainage. I got planted in moist loam with plenty of room for my roots to expand. Aren’t I the lucky one? But I like shallow soil with little drainage; it is where I thrive. And the plant in the moist loam pouts because it couldn’t best the shallow soil plant.

I can even see plant junior high humor. Did you see Rhododendron over there? A dog peed on its lower branches! And the oak tree sapling and the crocus buds all snicker among themselves, as the Rhododendron droops in shame.

The corn would stand up and shout that it has controlled mankind, gotten it to plant corn from one end of the earth to the other. We, the corn, are superior! Or the wheat. Or the soybeans. Or the lawn grass, especially golf course lawn grass. We have what mankind wants and get it to put our seeds and roots everywhere!

I wonder how the plants feel about forced plant mating, putting a Gravenstein apple with a Fuji, or a Red Delicious with a Pippen, their little branches cut open and stuck onto one another, held together with plant tape and plastic. What if they didn’t want to mate with one another? They have no choice. Humans forcing apple rape.  Nice.

In any case, these were the thoughts that flitted through my brain as I sat in that drive through lane, waiting to buy and drink my socially acceptable drug.

Pointless Rambling

Gads.  It’s getting to the point where I can hardly stand to read anything about the news anymore.  The level of disconnect of so many citizens in this country is disheartening.  So many people get all their information from one news channel and screaming talk radio.  So many have zero knowledge about the issues they scream about.  They know a few buzzwords, but have no idea what the hell it is they are talking about.  And it seems that the typical response of these ignorant fools when presented with a logical, educated response to their ranting is to diverge off into another unrelated rant.  Seriously disheartening.

On a personal note, too often lately I have writing ideas that do not get written down.  I’m back where I was five or six years ago when I didn’t write things down and would lose so many good ideas.  I do that all the time now.  Back then, I decided to carry around a tablet to write on when I thought of something.  Then I became good at writing every day on the computer (and especially this blog) and the ideas started getting captured. Then I took my life down a path and did not end up at the expected destination and stopped writing as much and the ideas are getting lost again.  I think the notebook is going to have to return to capture some of the ideas.  Disheartening too.

Isabel is lying on my lap asleep.  Milla and I watched a movie tonight called The Private Lives of Pippa Lee.  Sadly, I could identify with Pippa’s feelings of helplessness and despair.  I loved it when she finally realized she was free from the cage of a life she created for herself.  I wonder what is going to be my catalyst.  Is there going to be one or am I stuck here forever because I made decisions I thought were the right ones and they turned out to be not so great?  For years I went through life just kind of taking it as it came.  Then I started living with intention, making decisions with some effort towards control of my destiny and things turned out worse.

Of course, here I am saying that with this daughter on my lap I would not trade for anything ever.  With Milla I knew without question that I did not regret one second of my life up until the moment she was conceived because I would not want anything to have happened that would have led to life without her.  Now I would not trade Isabel for anything, but I have regrets.  I cannot reconcile these two perspectives.  I do not know how I can want Isabel with all my heart, yet know that I hold so many regrets.  Although come to think of it the strongest of my regrets are for after she was conceived.  I could live with the choices up to that minute.  I actually wish I had done things much differently after.  So I suppose the two aren’t so different.  Good to realize.

Today I bought a Kenneth Cole leather computer bag for twenty bucks.  Not bad.  Fits the new computer.  My personal computer is a Macbook and it’s smaller, so the new computer would not fit in the bag.  I was thinking I was going to have to get some ugly thing because I didn’t want to spend much, so this was a nice buy.  I would have liked to find a yellow or orange or pink leather one, but that would have cost a lot more, so this will do.  Black works.  Plus it’s big enough I can carry files in it too.

Well I’ve wasted twenty minutes writing about not much so I’m going to stop and go to bed.  I’m tired.  Good night.

Pregnancy Brain

I heard someone say or I read somewhere that “pregnant women are stupid.” I have to agree. Having gone from a person with so many thoughts running through my head I had to start a blog to deal with them all so I could focus on the other stuff I wanted to write, to someone who can barely compose a coherent sentence, let alone an entire blog piece, all in the span of just under 8 months, I have to agree.

The end of the first trimester and beginning of the second were the worst.  I look back at my blog posts from that time.  The number of posts start to dwindle.  The topics become more inane.  In fact I wrote about the fact that my brain seemed not to be functioning as it had previously.   And I just wrote about the concern, but there seemed to be no real pressing urge to change it.  I was sitting there muddled in a fog.

Gradually over the last few weeks I have started feeling somewhat clearer, but by brain in no way compares to how it was when I was not pregnant.  My energy levels certainly don’t.  I have always been the sort of person who has a list of 20 things to do and gets all of them done with time left over.  Now?  Now it’s a feat if I remember, oh yeah, I have that appointment today, and manage to dress and get to it on time.  Then that’s it.  I’m done for the day.  I also used to clean the house once a week.  Now it seems it takes seeing pink around the drain in the tub to remind me to clean mildew, or the dog chewing up a roll of toilet paper to force me to drag out the vacuum cleaner.  About the only thing I’ve remained regular on in the housecleaning department is keeping the kitchen clean.  Of course, our kitchen is so tiny, if it isn’t kept clean it’s a disaster within 2 days so the “mildew ring” shows up sooner, so to speak.

Words also used to flit off my tongue.  I had a thought and a response to everything.  Often these thoughts had some intelligence behind them, and I would analyze and think around all the angles.  Not anymore.  Now I don’t even have the thoughts, let alone intelligent ones.

I have some great writing projects I’m working on.  They are like cars with broken batteries.  I give them a jump.  I get them going for a bit.  Then they stop again and languish, waiting for AAA to come and jump them again.  Only AAA takes its own sweet time.  I took months completing and revising a short story I’m pretty pleased with.  I was at the query phase, ready to send letters to the magazines I had chosen.  Incidentally, choosing the magazines took weeks.  Then I started to write the query letter, but it didn’t roll off the fingers as such letters had in the past.  I had to write something saying what the story was about.  Stuck, I stopped for the day, then took a trip to Portland, and I still haven’t finished.  It’s on the list.

The list.  I’ve started making these because I forget things.  I was never much of a list maker in my personal life.  As an attorney, I had lists.  I had calendars.  I am extremely organized.  But I never had to in my personal life.  Now I do.  If I don’t make a list, even the stories and non-fiction pieces I’m working on are forgotten.

I realize pregnancy has hijacked my brain.  I realize at some point the thoughts will return.  However, I also realize that soon there will be a little baby to take my attention and getting these things done will be a practicality nightmare.  This realization is somewhat overwhelming.  Will it be years before I get my brain back?  Will the stories I have been working on be dated by then?  I feel the urge to complete these projects, but can’t seem to get them done.  However, I have stopped just lying in bed in the morning when I can’t sleep after I had to get up for the tenth time to pee.  I have started coming here and writing a little bit now and then.  So maybe there is hope.  I guess it will be obvious by the number of posts I make here.  Or not.

I Do Not Like Hairs

I do not like other people’s hairs.  I do not like them in my food. I do not like them in the shower or on a toilet seat or in a sink or touching me.  I know this is slightly ridiculous.  There is just something about another’s hairs curving or curling and lying there in a sauce or remaining, reminding me of another’s skin cells lining the space.  The worst are hairs on public toilets.  They leave little doubt from whence they came.  I will not sit on them.  If the seat is damp enough they cannot be removed by breath, I do not sit there.

I do not mind Milla’s hairs or Dan’s hairs or even pet hairs really.  I actually enjoy running my hands and fingers through those hairs.  It is the stranger hair or the person less than close to me hair that really creeps me out.  I would just prefer not to touch it or have it in the shower with me, that’s all.

I know.  I’m weird.  I get it.

The Unclean

Things are not clean.  Even though soap and water have been applied, objects remain clogged with grease and protein, bacteria and mire.

Grease beads on a pan, coats a plate, overlaying knives and spoons.  Grease does not like soap.  Add soap and grease goes away, but with too little soap or soaks in water full of oiliness the grease hovers and swims.  Grease prefers cold water to warm.  The hotter the water, the less likely grease will remain.

Starch is another skin.  It adheres carefully and craftily, defying efforts at its removal.  It cannot be seen in the water.  Water must be removed or scrubs must be soapy and vigilant in order to ensure it moves on to pipes.  Left to its own devices, it curls and dries, affixed with tenacity.

The backs of implements used to eat and to prepare sustenance (plates and bowls, pans, glasses and cups) all need cleansing on their backs and under their bottoms.  Material hides there, ignored by those who do not consider its existence.

Toilets with urine that is not flushed begin to smell acrid and pungent.

If a toothbrush is electric and removed from the mouth before it ceases rotation, it leaves small bits of bacteria and spit on all surfaces in its vicinity.  Others who come into contact with these substances may share.

Why remove items from the floor when it is more simple to walk across them than to place them elsewhere?

Used toilet tissue does not replace itself.

The a Turns It Around

Apathy, like a virus worming its way through cells.  It gets in and makes nothing appealing.  It wins.  It is floating, moving along the surface.  It no longer feels the urge to push.  It no longer cares.  Some would call it depression, but there is no pain in it.  Depression connotes pain.  Depression is drowning while apathy floats.  Apathy is flatter, something not angry.  Depression has anger and vile, venom and spit.  Apathy is a pool of water on oil; it sits there, not even holding itself, simply roosting, waiting for nothing.

A pathos.  Pathos with an added vowel that takes it away.  Add the a, the pathos leaves.

Somewhere in my belly if I turn towards certain things I notice a place where apathy has not moved in.  It could, given the right set of circumstances.   There are a handful of things that still know pathos, that still know rage, that still know love.  Give them time and the a will turn them around, help them float.