palindrome birthday

[soundcloud url=”″ params=”color=ff5500&auto_play=false&hide_related=false&show_comments=true&show_user=true&show_reposts=false” width=”100%” height=”166″ iframe=”true” /]
Dear Internet,
A couple of admin things before we get going:

  • Item the first: I’ve minimalize the site design after listening to a podcast on brutualist websites. Long time readers may have noticed the site design has been getting less cluttered over the years and now it’s stripped down to as basic as possible unless I dropped out of WordPress entirely rendering all entries static but with nearly 1300 entries that is not happening anytime soon. Let me know in the comments if there is anything broken or missing.
  • Item the second: You may have also noticed there is now an audio option in addition to the text. Starting this post going forward there will be mp3 available to download of the entry. In short, I’m turning my blog entries into a podcast and don’t be too surprised if the podcasts are a bit rough in the beginning. You (should) be able to download the mp3 here, iTunes, and LibSyn SoundCloud. Why now? Numerous articles and research discuss the changing ways of how people access content online. This also mirrors how I, and my peeps, access information. Newletters (you will find the subscription to mine at the bottom of this entry) and podcasts are now the new hotness. Lastly, turning my blog into a podcast has been something I’ve been wanting to do for ages.

On with the show.

Today is a palindrome birthday – I turn 44. Celebration will be chill until TheExHusband comes to visit in a few weeks for the ever continuation of Lisa-mas. However, presents and cards have been rolling in and I feel beloved by many. Thank you.1

No one is going to be shocked (and some might argue this is a long time coming) TheExHusband and I are, again, moving towards a romantic relationship. Part of the reason why I moved back to the east coast was to deliberate on whether starting a romantic relationship with TheExHusband was because I truly loved him or he was a crutch or he was a familiar.
In the last six months as my brain became less fuzzy, I ruminated what it meant to love and be loved. Many years ago I asked Rob G. if he and his partner stopped having sex for whatever reason, would he stay with her and he answered a quick “yes.” I swore to him I could never be in a sexless relationship, or a passionless relationship, and I would find someone who could fulfill both the sexy times and my intellectual hunger. All but TheExHusband had failed to fulfill both requirements. (I can feel Rob’s virtual head pat as if he knew one day I would know the truth about love.)
As I started unpacking at my new abode, I came across diaries from years ago where I do nothing but complain about how men seemingly only want sex and nothing to do with my brain. This complaint goes on for years, regardless of my relationship status at the time of the writing. It became interesting to me how the tables have now turned: I want nothing but sex (so I think) now and fuck all the intellectual side.
I know the psychological reasons why my behaviour is this way (sex = being loved) but at the end of the day this is not what I really want. I urgently need brain stimulation which leads me to having better sex and we shant be surprised it is never the other way around.
So I’m in a pickle. Sex with TheBassist was out of this world but I felt as if I could never get him to talk about anything other than day to day events.2 Sex, on the other hand, with TheExHusband had become nearly impossible and unfulfilling but he could stimulate my brain like no other. After our split in August 2014, he hied himself off to a therapist, got on Wellbutrin, admitted what he has always known – he was depressed. He has reported back to me now that Wellbutrin is coursing through his system, his sexual drive has returned 10 fold from its previous state.
I lived with TheExHusband from September 2015 until last month. During that period not a sexual event happened other than benign snuggles, forehead kisses, and the occasional hand holding. We both agreed participating in any kind of sensual romps would be detrimental to my mental health while spurring on more confusion for him which obviously neither of us wanted so we remained chaste. Pinky swear.
When I was offered my current gig, there was a lot of discussion between my brain and I on whether or not to take the position. The more I pro and conned it, talked it over with TheExHusband and friends, the more another thought took residence in my brain: I was deeply in love with TheExHusband and leaving him would tear me apart.
TheExHusband loves me. He really loves me. He has never wavered his support of me. He has taken care of me when I hit rock bottom and cheered me on as things started to progress and get better. He always has my best interests at heart; he likes making me happy. He likes making me laugh. He wants to go on adventures with me and eat the world (another criteria I have in a potential mate). His love isn’t the love of fiery suns but a slow burning ember that never seems to fade.
Most importantly, he never left me when things got really bad.
I heavily took stock in this. Isn’t this what most of us want? Someone who is our companion and mate, who understands us near completely, makes us laugh, and gives us unwavering support in our choices and our life? I know I do. I know I never stopped loving TheExHusband, never wavered for my own support of him, never not wanted to make him laugh. I could never imagine my life without him and even wrote that if you date me, he comes along as part of the package.
TheExHusband and I have our own rituals, our own language, our own sense of security in the other. Our own world where we happily accept others to visit.
TheExHusband has his faults just as I have my faults, but at the end of the day if there is anyone I want to be with, it is him.
TheBassist may have been the one, but TheExHusband is my always.3

Long time readers may be puzzled by these turn of events. For months I banged on TheBassist was the one, I would take him back in a heartbeat, and I was tragically in love with him. Those were things I believed then and those were my truths. I could forgive myself for my behaviour during the course of our relationship, I could even understand some of his behaviours such as the birthday incident4, but I cannot shake the pain of him dumping me onto TheExHusband’s lap because TheBassist could not take care of me when I was so very sick and then wiping his hands of me. What also breaks my heart is that after the big show of telling me he wanted to check in on me to make sure I was okay after we broke up, he never did. How do I know? I asked his best friends. I told TheBassist all that time ago, in the beginning, I was his ideal on a pedestal who he could not handle the real and everyday me. Even his mom agreed. TheBassist vehemently disagreed with my observation and yet, here we are, a fantasy who has been put to rest.

It’s now going on two months since I planted myself in Connecticut and while I’m an hour away from TheBassist’s home, nothing has propelled me to attempt a visit. There has been a single time I have driven past his exit, on my way to IKEA, and I flipped it off in true Lisa fashion. Childish? Sure. But boy did it feel good.
Another indicator my attitude has changed is the slight PTSD I have of olive green Subaru Outbacks. They seem to be car d’jour around these parts and I am forever checking to see if one’s back window is covered in stickers. So far, the coast has been clear.
I am human above all things and I cannot tell a lie that I do want to see him if only to tell him off. Lisa Rabey Is Always Right™ and my ego must never be bruised. TheExHusband predicted ages ago TheBassist dumping me had less to do with me being in love and more to do with a dent in my believed perfect ego. I am begrudgingly hold this may be slightly true.
I still maintain TheBassist breaking up with me was one of the smartest moves he has ever made and without that breakup, the crash would have been much worse.

I often need to experience things to get the things to stick no matter how many times someone tells me it is so. e.g. I need to touch the hot stove to believe it is a hot stove.
Most of the human population, upon reading my exercise in love on TheExHusband may be thinking to themselves: This is what is known to be love. We know that it ebbs and flows. This is a universal truth. It is not always just the hot burning passion but it is also vomit and money woes. If you want the treasure you have to fight the orcs.
I hurt a lot of people getting here and there is rarely a time I haven’t cried when thinking about everything I put TheExHusband through but he will tell you two things: The first being I was mentally sick for a long time and much of my actions were based upon the disease and not the real me and his depression caused a lot of rift he refused to believe was there also for a very long time.
TheExHusband and I discuss this on occasion and we’re brutally honest with the other. I am not afraid to admit that in some warped way going through all of this is what smacked me in the head about love, I am every so glad it happened.
P.S. The track isn’t bad but it’s still little rough. I’ve been editing for about six to seven hours today so next time it will be better.

1. Last year’s birthday was interesting. TheBassist took me the mall, bought his children presents, and couldn’t even be arsed to make or get me a card. He had a snit when I rescued a rather dismal day by helping his family sell strawberries and shortcakes at a church fete. When I told him how I felt, and that I wanted a birthday do-over, he promised with a “sure, sure” and yet, nothing happened.
2. Let’s call this a truce on the he said/she said. This is and was my truth.
3. When I first mentioned to TheExHusband he was my always, he thought it was terribly sweet yet he could not get the image of the Always maxi pad brand out of his head. One day whilst shopping  I came across the lady parts aisle, took a picture of the brand and sent him said image. He giggled.
4. What was the point of doing anything special for me if I was only going to leave and break TheBassist’s heart over and over again. Thin, sure, but I understand this may have been his reasoning.


This day in Lisa-Universe: 2014, 20142012, 20021999


Want to be the first in the know when a new entry posts?
Subscribe to the mailing list, Bloglovin’, or
follow via RSS. Want Lisa goodness but less
frequently? Subscribe to A Most Unreliable Narrator.
Want to start at the beginning?
Buy my book, The Lisa Chronicles: Vol 1: 1998

welcome home

Week 13 – April 26, 2016
The weekly silly pics are less silly and more watching my hair grow.

Dear Internet,
I’ve stayed consistent with the silly pictures goal and just posted week 13. So too with the gratitude and happy lists, though I will admit the last few weeks I’ve been posting one massive gratitude and a few happy things as nothing at this time in my life can compare my gratefulness of getting a job and finally starting a life of my own.

The fates have finally bestowed their approval of my life and allowed me to get a job.
I am going to be straight up honest here: I had my doubts. I cried for a few days about this new adventure. I have not lived alone since 2005. I am going to an area where I will know people but we’re not intimate friends. Yet.
Lots of questions and anxieties abound.

  • What if my new gig fired me?
  • What if my contract doesn’t get picked up?
  • What if I hate my job?

The “what ifs” kept stacking up and everything was almost to overwhelming to bear.
I can’t do this, I thought. I’m too scared, too old, too something.
But then I reminded myself of all the big jumps I’ve taken like moving to San Francisco alone when I was 25. Moving back to Grand Rapids more than once without knowing a single soul. Solo cross country trips without nary a thought.
The list of what I could, can, and have done began to overtake the “what if” stack. There were a lot of things I’ve jumped to that turned out to be good, I could do this.
Once I told my fucking anxieties to take a hike, I knew I had this.

The job is located in New York, in Westchester county, which is near the New York / Connecticut state lines. After laughing manicaly at the $3K price tag for one bedroom apartments in the area, I started looking at close-ish Connecticut towns / villages / cities to call home.
Connecticut, like most states along on the eastern seaboard, have their larger cities along the coast. 95, which runs from Florida to the Canadian province of New Brunswick, follows along the coast making the hop from Boston, New York City, and so on pretty easy. This makes sense as many of these towns were originally ports for trading and shit during the early days of the formation of the US.
There are a few cities inland but I wanted to be near the action on the coast. I decided to concentrate on areas around Norwalk and a few towns north. My qualifiers were fairly simple: Within an hour commute to work; Trader Joe’s, Whole Foods, and Stew Leonard’s near by; close to a MINI dealership; easy access to Metro North, and an apartment community1.
Norwalk fit the bill perfectly.
I massaged the numbers, I cut out things that were possibly not needed. I looked for cheaper apartments but in the end I just couldn’t make it work. Even after cutting things to the bone, I would end up – $47 a month. Yes, I would be in the red with no savings, no emergency funds, nothing to help me out if the world fell apart. There would also be no going out to eat, no entertainment, no fun.
It was that bad2.
It seemed holy unfair I received a job offer, with decent pay, and I couldn’t afford to live in the area I desired.
For a brief moment I thought about rejecting the offer and staying put in L-ville. I would throw myself at recruiters and start the process of slowly integrating myself into the workforce before venturing out in the big, wide, scary world.
We all know I do nothing by halves. It’s either both feet or nothing at all.
After pulling myself together and looking at my options, I started researching apartments in Danbury.
Danbury is in south-western Connecticut. Not quite on the gold coast but close enough. Instead of the 50-70 minute commute I would have from Norwalk, the commute from Danbury is 30-45. Community apartment rents were significantly cheaper. I was close to 84, an interstate that connected me to work fairly quickly (the drive from Norwalk would have been mostly back roads) and I could get to a Metro North station tout suite. There was a Trader Joe’s, Whole Foods, and a Stew Leonard’s nearby and I was equidistant between two MINI dealerships.
I heard from various people Danbury was a borderline shit hole. There was huge crime problems3. When I was there in December for my job interview at a local university, it was rainy, miserable, and what I saw looked sketch. My Google Earth stalking of the downtown area made me side-eye. How in the fuck was I going to ever live here (if I got that job) if the area seemed below my standards4?
Here I was five months later and I needed to live somewhere that was relatively cheaper than what I was seeing in Norwalk, Westchester County (and New York as a whole) was out, and I wanted to be in a fairly decent sized city.
Much to my chagrin5, Danbury it is.
I started the search for Danbury apartments. The community I looked at in Norwalk has a sister community in Danbury so I made an appointment to tour the facility the Saturday after I arrived. A few other communities popped up on my radar which I put in way down on the reserve list as the Google and Yelp reviews were terrible. I started to fret I wasn’t going to find a place a live until I stumbled across the City Center of Danbury site and I felt like I had come home.
The first thing I noticed was the images of downtown places and markers were markedly different than what was on Google Earth. There also seemed to be a fairly decent list of things to shop, eat, and live.
I went back and talked to a few friends again about the area. The downtown core was booming and people seemed to love it. There were loads of amenities downtown like parks were also enticing. Maybe this wasn’t going to be so bad after all.
I had forgotten this site existed even though I scoped it out in December. I found I was intrigued with a few of the apartment places, particularly with 1 Kennedy Flats.
This complex caught my eye for a couple of reasons. First, the rent was within my budget even with the amenities and pet fees added on and it was cheaper by $350 than the places in Norwalk, which meant I could eek out some kind of life outside of work AND pay my bills. Second, it was located in what seemed to be a thriving downtown and I really wanted to make sure the walk score of where ever I lived was above 75. The complex was across from the downtown park (Connecticuters seem big on these main square parks which is fine by me!), it has reserved parking, an on community storage area, a gym for me to work out in, a pool (time to get out that fat girl bikini!), gas appliances, fake wood floors, and walking distance to everything.
It wasn’t just the apartments accoutrements and location of the community that sold me on living in Danbury, but also everything else going on the city.

  • The public library is a 7 minute walk from my apartment
  • There is a hackerspace and it to is located downtown
  • The mall looks pretty decent and it has the ever necessary Apple store
  • There is a local minor league hockey team and the arena is within walking distance
  • A sports arena that does soccer and lacrosse (only local leagued)
  • And a mutherfuckin’ rugby leagued team that also has a leagued woman’s team (Fuck. Yes.)
  • I could get to NYC in about an hour (hello museums!)

I am relieved.
Of course moving in is not going to be exactly smooth. I’ve reserved the apartment and paid for the first month without stepping a foot onto the property so there is a chance of me not liking the place or location. My stuff isn’t scheduled to arrive until a week or two after I arrive. I will be without home internet for a week, which means I had to up my data plan6 to survive. The only furniture I will have is my bed and that’s it for at least a week. (An IKEA trip is already in the works.) Daily household items I have are boxed up and won’t arrive until the move AND there is a longer than my arm list of daily household items I know I don’t have and will need, primarily while my stuff is in transit, which means I’m spending more cash.
I should say it’s not “had doubts” but “have doubts.” Moving is stressful. Borrowing and spending more cash on the move is stressful. Starting a new job is stressful7. The dog’s anxiety on a new place and a 1000 mile road trip is stressful.
My medicating and talking therapists are convinced I can handle this. I’m tough. I’ve been mentally healthy for quite awhile now so I’m less likely to breakdown if shit happens. Even my close friends feel I can do this. And if I do cry, or get upset, or feel anxiety about everything happening, that is totally normal — remember it’s how I handle it determines whether or not I’m mentally healthy.
I’ve fucking got this.

1. I wanted a community over living in a private home apartment / owing a home as I wanted all the trappings of what a community offered such as 24 hour maintenance, on site gym, guaranteed parking, and washer/dryer in unit. I wanted to be catered to and not have to worry about a fucking thing.
2. It was around this time I was crying a lot and my anxiety, understandably, was through the roof.
3. When I think of Connecticut, I don’t think of “crime” or “gangs” or anything nefarious — after living in Detroit and Oakland the rest of the country seems like small potatoes.
4. I readily admit I am a privledge asshole. Living with TheExHusband at his condo for the last eight months has raised my bar on what I want / don’t want in my life style and Danbury seemed fairly far from that making that reach. Turns out I was wrong.
5. I associate things with things. Memories with music, people with smells, and so on. Pre-me 2005, TheBassist dated a woman who lived in Danbury and she went batshit crazy when the relationship ended (She stalked me for awhile.). Even without direct association, Danbury has always equaled batshit crazy to me. Yes, this is silly.
6. I have a 2gig a month plan which is normally more than enough for my phone data needs. I am paying an extra $40 or $60 (I forget which) to bump that up to 18gigs month. If I don’t, the overage, per gig, on my original plan is $15. So I’ll be able to hotspot my laptop, conservatively, but not kill myself with the overage charges.
7. Everyone is apparently really excited I’m coming and there is plans for everyone to meet me on my first day. No pressure, none at all.

This Day in Lisa-Universe: 2015, 2014, 2012

Want to be the first in the know when a new entry posts?
Subscribe to the mailing list, Bloglovin’, or
follow via RSS. Want Lisa goodness but less
frequently? Subscribe to A Most Unreliable Narrator.
Want to start at the beginning?
Buy my book, The Lisa Chronicles: Vol 1: 1998

making it rain

Dear Internet,
I got a job.
A real, in my field, letter of interest signed and sealed with a start date job.
Here’s the bittersweetness: I’ll be living in Connecticut.
OH! The irony.
So the gig is as a digital archivist in a corporate setting.1 I’ll be working with the processing and corporate archivists on a large project that is scheduled to run until the end of the year with an option to be picked up in 2017. I signed an NDA so I cannot tell you who I am working for.
I’m nervous. Excited. Grateful. Nervous. Lots of other emotions.
My start date is May 9th.
I am going to have to wear PANTS (which is anything not Chucks, t-shirts, or jeans). I will be out in the world interacting with other people. I will be paying taxes!2 I will be contributing to society.
I get to be an adult with my own things, my own place, and my own decisions to make.
It’s preeetttyyy exciting.
I made the announcement on Facebook on Thursday and nearly half of my Facebook BFFs liked/loved and some commented on the post. SO MANY PEOPLE are rooting for me. I never thought in a million years I would have this large of a fan base, but there you go — I have proof I am loved and wanted.
I’m leaving L-ville on May 4th, arriving in Connecticut on May 5th. I’m lining up the usual apartment and hotel shenanigans. I’m packing and getting business done here.
I’ve got a lot of shit to do.
Another great thing? I don’t have to look for a job! First time in 18 months I do not have to feel dehumanized and dejected on the job front. Oh happy day!
There is a kind of creepy part to this equation.
The weekend before I heard from the corporation in regards to scheduling my first interview, I decided to color my hair one color and take out my nose ring. That Monday I got the email with the request for the phone interview that afternoon. If I was moving forward they would reach out to my references and schedule the video interview.
References were checked Monday afternoon and Tuesday morning.
They got in touch with me Tuesday afternoon to schedule the video interview for that Friday. After the video interview, the next process would be for them to confer, make their recommendation, and move forward with the candidate of their choosing. I would know by the end of the following week (April 22).
A few days after the interview, I had a discussion with TheExHusband on the need for more profesh clothes as it was spring, nearing summer, and my interview clothes were for fall and winter. He gave me a budget to work with, I surveyed my closet, bought flexible items to fill in the gaps of what I was missing. Clothes had been ordered before I even knew my status.
Thursday the 21st (nearly a week since the video interview), I followed up to find out my status and they said they would let me know as soon as they knew.
They called me that afternoon and I missed the call. We rescheduled the call for 5:15PM and within three minutes they asked if I was still interested and if so, they would like to extend the offer to me. I said yes and here we are!
Time from interview to acceptance: less than two weeks.
Academia can learn a thing or two about the hiring process.

So let’s get to what everyone wants to really know more than about the job: What about TheBassist?
Good question and not unsurprisingly the number one question I’ve received (privately) after my I AM PAYING TAXES announcement. (People worry about me and I love it and I am wholeheartedly always grateful.)
What about him indeed.
On occasion I’ve thought about different scenarios in different contexts if he got back in touch. As my mental wellbeing started to lean more towards being healthy than the crazy, my attitude went from “this is what I would I totally do” (see pre-Wellbutrin) to “I’ll deal with it when it happens. I’ve got shit to do” (see post-Wellbutrin).
Before I continue, let me make one thing clear: I am not getting in touch with him. I’ll be living an hour south of him so the likelihood of us running into each other is pretty slim.
But there is a catch: Many of his local close friends love me and can’t wait to integrate me into their social scene. I’m beyond flattered (and grateful) so I had to put some thought into a scenario where TheBassist and I end up in the same place.3
At first, my thought was, “Oh. No. I hope his friends understand I am not ready to be around him” and “I could never be friends with him after everything that has happened.” When those thoughts started creeping, I took to my journal to write it out.
Within a couple of pages, I had a 180 degree turnaround about the situation.
It’s pretty clear the last year has taken a toil on my psyche and mental health. My self-respect and dignity are making a comeback. I love the sassy me.
Making these wide gestures of “oh no, look at me” is creating drama, even unintentionally. As we’ve seen, even unintentional drama serves no one (especially me). So then I thought, “You know. I can pull up my big girl panties and handle this like a champ. If we’re in the same place at the same time, I can be gracious and kind. It hurts no one and being cruel has never been my forte. It serves no purpose.”
And the job, the move, and everything else? It’s none of his business. It’s my life and he has no say in it.
It came to me I had a choice: I could be a spoilt child having a tantrum or I could be graceful and keep my dignity intact.
I choose the later.
Once I came to that conclusion in my journal, I signed off for the evening and went to bed.

I’m a catch. I’m adorable. I’m funny. I can converse on a variety of topics. I’m kind to people. I’m loyal and I can be naughty as fuck when needed. The list of my good qualities and personality endeavours is as long as I am tall
(I am humble too.)
But there is a crazy Lisa and a mentally healthy Lisa. He came in the beginning of the crazy. If he can’t strip that away, disregard whatever fantasy (I believe) he had of me, and see the real me. Well, his loss.

I will be gracious and kind if I come across him in social situations. But to be coffee meeting friends? No. To wish him ill will? No. To cause drama and strife? No. Do I wish him to have a good life? Absolutely.
Will feelings about what has transpired hurt? Of course they will — my therapist assured me this is normal. How I respond to these feelings is what dictates whether or not my mental health is, well, healthy. To start out a bit panicky about the prospect of running into him in social situations and to come to the conclusion I’ll be fine and the situation will be fine is what differs from then to now.
I will be okay.

I’ve got a hunch he’s seeing someone. No one has told me, and I had asked them not to, so my hunch could be unfounded. But I’ve got a feeling and sometimes my feelings are right. Of course it hurts my heart a little bit to know he could be with someone or he’s pursuing someone. It has been six months since the break-up and while I have taken time out of the dating world to handle self-care it does not behold him to do the same.
In the end, all I’ve wanted was for him to be happy and for me, obviously, to make him happy. If I’m not the person who can do that, I hope he finds someone who can love him the way he wants and needs to be loved and to find happiness in that person. That is all I’ve ever wanted.
As for me? I’m a grown ass woman and I’ve got shit to do.

1. I swore until the ends of time I could never work corporate. Well end time is nigh and I’ve got to make it rain.
2. A friend of mine who is an accountant swore he’s never heard someone get excited about paying taxes before. It’s how I roll.
3. I give myself ideas of potential scenarios to get a vague idea of of how I would react to that situation. I like being, to some extent, prepared for eventualities. It’s what I do.

This Day in Lisa-Universe: 2012, 2000

Want to be the first in the know when a new entry posts?
Subscribe to the mailing list, Bloglovin’, or
follow via RSS. Want Lisa goodness but less
frequently? Subscribe to A Most Unreliable Narrator.
Want to start at the beginning?
Buy my book, The Lisa Chronicles: Vol 1: 1998

Last Post From Throbbing Manor

Dear Internet,
This is happening now.
The movers are almost done loading my shit; Jeeves was loaded this morning. After they pull out and I hand TheSoonToBeExHusband keys to the house, I’m free.
I am free.
I’ve been a little too giddy about my impending freedom, but fuck it. The amount of back and forth about the marriage degrading and who gets what leaves me with one thought: Burn it all.
I’ll be in town for a few more days to do more paperwork and other odds and ends. My co-conspirator arrives later in the week to help me drive to the east coast, with a stop over in Detroit to see the east side contingent. I should be firmly planted at my new locale by the end of the weekend.
My stuff arrives mid next-week.
Throbbing Manor will be going up for sale within a few weeks. TheSoonToBeExHusband retains ownership of Throbbing Cabin. The divorce should be finalized within sixty days.
Then what?
I sleep for weeks.

This Day in Lisa-Universe: 2013, 2010, 2008, 1998

There she goes

Dear Internet,
The Lisa Extended World Tour: 2014 Edition
1972 Toronto to Port Huron, MI
1985 Port Huron to Grand Rapids
1990 Grand Rapids to Toronto
1991 Toronto to Grand Rapids
1997 Grand Rapids to San Francisco
1999 San Francisco to DC
2003 DC to Grand Rapids
2009 Grand Rapids to Detroit
2011 Detroit to Grand Rapids
2014 Grand Rapids to East Coast
TheSoonToBeExHusband and I are in the throes of sorting, packing, tossing, and cleaning. If I could light everything on fire and be done, I certainly would. We accumulated a lot of shit for being in the house for only 3.5 years but the house still feels empty in some spaces; it is a strange juxtaposition but also a great metaphor of my life up until now.
The biggest concentration of Lisa-stuff is my office, which looks like a scene from Apocalypse Now. And being a librarian and all, my organizational skills are brilliant. So brilliant, the eye is fooled with how much is in here.
(There is a lot here.)
Divorcing, job hunting, apartment hunting, and moving at the same time started to take its toll. My plans were so fluid, they literally changed from one hour to the next because something was always coming up and things had to get readjusted. I had no concrete idea when I was leaving Grand Rapids but that I only wanted to be out before the snow falls. My partner in crime on the east coast and I sorted out what would be feasible when and agreed that the concentration is on the divorcing and moving. They’ve secured long-term, albeit temporary, lodgings for me which takes a lot of weight off my shoulders (as well alleviates money worries and long list of couch surfing).
The firm plans are as follows: I fly out on the 23rd and set up east coast things (storage, mail, etc). I come back on September 30th. Movers come October 13-16 and load up the truck. I leave on the 17th and start the drive east.
Once I’m settled east coast side, I wait for the chaos to subside and get cracking on the big projects like writing and researching opening up my lady-owned comic book store.
And just being deliriously full of joy every single day.
[iframe src=”” width=”300″ height=”250″ style=”border: 0px none;”]
Track listing:
Intro – The xx
Miles Iz Ded – The Afghan Whigs
Natural One – Folk Implosion
Smokers Outside The Hospital Doors – Editors
He Can Only Hold Her – Amy Winehouse
Moving to L.A. – Art Brut
There Is No Other Way – Blur
Brother Misery – The Mercuries

This Day in Lisa-Universe: 2012, 2002, 2002

she who gives

Dear Internet,
We’re rattling around the fancy house like ghosts with Restoration Hardware chains around our waists. We would give Miss Havisham a run for her money with our shenanigans.
On Monday, TheSoonToBeExHusband saw a nurse practitioner who put him on Wellbutrin, which seems to be working. He has an appointment in a few weeks to talk with his own shrink and to start making headway on working on the problems he needs to address. He has finally agreed that we need to be apart while he works on his problems and I work on mine; that the two of us together only hinder the other in our mutual goals of mental happiness. I am making no promises to him, which is why I don’t want to be only separated, I want to be divorced.
Because this is the core truth: Love often isn’t enough. It hurts. It breaks. It shatters, but it is truth.
I’m tired. A Lot.
My sleeping patterns have been fucked for a while because of the unmedicated mania, but now it’s worse. Thursday I napped for a few hours and dreamt I was walking around with lockjaw. No one in my dreams could understand what I was saying, which of course frustrated me even more. My mouth was aching when I woke up; thankfully none of my teeth were broken from the gnashing in my sleep.
On Friday, I posed the following to my Facebook wall,

PSA: Why you should masturbate on a regular basis:
If I had not attempted to masturbate this morning, I would not have found the lump in the left interior wall of my vagina, which turned out to be a filled Bartholin gland. If I had not taken myself to the ER this morning and gotten it checked, the gland could have gotten infected, which would have meant they would have gone in, drain the gland, and there was a mention of 4-6 week catheter and other fun stuff.
Instead, I take drugs, wear a maxi pad, and place a heating pad on my crotch to hope it drains by itself.
Masturbate! And often!

I have to spend a few hours a day with a heating pad on my crotch and take long baths. Good thing I like long baths.
So on top of it all, my vagina is now broken. I used to joke to the TheSoonToBeExHusband if he didn’t fuck me enough, I would get clogged.
And well, here we are.
Or it could be from my chronic masturbation the last few weeks of dreams and fantasies that I can now indulge in that I could not indulge before because it didn’t fit the parameters of my now dead marriage. Am I revealing too much? No, I think that was the problem to begin with: I was not revealing enough.
I have nothing left to lose here, in this world, and I don’t think many of you will understand the freedom that comes from this weight being lifted from my heart and soul. Things are clicking into place that were put on hold for a very long time, and as I reveal those plans slowly, some of you have expressed concern. I get it. I do. It all sounds stupidly overwhelming and incomprehensible. How do I know I’m not in mania right now?
Easy. Mania is about impulse. This is not impulse, this is about righting myself on the path I needed to be on so many years ago. If I was manic, I would be indulging in reckless behaviors and I’m not. It’s just that simple.
I am lucid, clear, and in control of myself.
What I hadn’t expected as the result of the fallout of my marriage? Things like this:
The creeper is a high school boyfriend who dumped me when I wouldn’t put out. I was 15 and still a virgin. He was also fairly instrumental in helping promote my reputation as the high school whore when the swim team attempted to gang rape me at a sleep-away event for our science classes. I escaped by climbing out of the bathroom window when my two female cabin mates couldn’t smash down the cabin door. Of course we never told the adult chaperones on that trip, because hey, I was the girl from the wrong side of the tracks. Who’d believe me?
I found it intriguing he wanted to be FB BFFs a few years ago. Even more interesting was he never said a word to me until I did a beta readers request a few weeks ago about my new adventures in writing erotica. And then I became his unwilling mother confessor.
As I’ve been working on reclaiming my sensuality for the last couple of months, and have been more public about it. With the collapse of my marriage, he and numerous others have been circling like vultures because apparently being public about my masturbation habits and enjoying sex is an open invitation.
You know, because being blunt about sex means I’m just begging for it.
I started out this piece in a calm but sad space and became so fucking angry that I’m shaking. I have a lot of great support on both coasts, and instead of working with them to keep me in this nice sane place, I have to spend my extraneous energy fighting off sexual predators. Thanks. Much appreciated.
Thursday I’m flying out to the East coast for a much needed mini-break. I want to be somewhere where I won’t get yelled at. Or sued. Or harassed. I’ve got the best possible host lined up who is going to take very good care of me and I plan on being underground for a few days. There are those who know where I will be in case of emergencies but the rest of you? Bye. See you next Sunday afternoon.

This Day In Lisa Universe: 1999

into which the cosmos will collapse once again

Dear Internet,
In January, I found out I was soon going to be out of a job.
In February, I lost my beloved Wednesday.
In June, it was revealed I am co-defendant in a $1.25M defamation case.
In August, I separated from my husband.
The last 72 hours have been a corporeal version of bipolar. The cycling in this house, between the two of us, is so fast and furious, the sheer amount of  willpower to keep myself together has been exhausting.
Yet, this is the most lucid and clear I’ve felt in years.
The tl;dr is I will never see his joyful face in my Instagram feed. There is not a single picture, with perhaps the exception of our wedding photo four years ago, where he looks like he wants to be there.
The condensed version is I’ve struggling with leaving him for the last two years. Shortly after my 40th birthday, I had the arthritis ankle surgery. Several months later, I knew I was in such a bad place, I sought out help. I wanted to be sure that whatever feelings I had were because of the crazy, not because I was unhappy in the relationship. On paper, my relationship looked flawless.
During all of this, I would voice my concerns to him, tell him what was going on in my head. We would have these big sit down talks about the status of the relationship. I would continue to work on making me whole, he would do his bit.
But he never really did.
And since I am the Guinness world holder for navel gazing, I documented all of it here, so I know, I KNOW, I fought for my marriage and for him. But after two years, and not seeing myself or ourselves go forward, I knew I had to make a choice: Me or my marriage.
I choose me.
He’s angry right now and he’s lashing out at me, and I take it because I am not arguing, debating, or correcting his impressions. I’m a terrible person because he stuck through with the surgery and the crazy, why can’t I wait for him? He vilifies me in one breath and tells me I’m the love of his life in the other.
I’m selfish because I am not keeping to my vows. The same vows he ridiculed for years because as we all know, he only married me to give me health insurance.
There is more to this, ALWAYS more to this, but this is all that you need to know. For now. When the time comes, and it will, to examine with microscopic intensity the demise of my relationship, I will commit it all here.
As for me? Well. I have nothing left to lose anymore. I have lost everything. So, once the home is sold and the divorce is settled, I’m leaving Michigan. Hopefully for good this time. I always come back to lick my wounds here, but there is nothing left is this state for me anymore and hasn’t been for a very long time. Of those I’m leaving behind that I care about, I am sorry, but I cannot be here anymore.
I’m heading to the east coast, going to couch hop for a bit, and then find a place to settle.  Get myself a sunny apartment, and with my teddy bear in one hand and a pug leash in the other, start over.

This day in Lisa-Universe: 2011, 2008, 2003