untangle

necklace untangling

Dear Internet,
You may have noticed a drastic change in the design and layout of the site. I’ve been using the same theme for years and with so many changes and the cluttering, EPbaB is/was a hot mess. Like a child dressing up in their mother’s clothes.
I knew I had to re-do the design and layout, and while I was learning how to do backend from scratch  I was far far behind where I needed to be to make this site what I really wanted. Perusing through the WordPress Codex is often a disappointment as I ended up downloading and testing themes that are broken or far too complicated to use. (You know, like the ones who talk about how easy it is to drop and drag modules and you need a Phd to get it to work.) I stumbled upon Seasonal, which didn’t look like the other “personal” blog themes and was geared more towards my type of writing rather than those personal bloggers about their “brand.” Despite its attractiveness, I was weary. Very weary. But woah, all I did was just download the theme, configure it, and some small CSS changes. BOOM. It’s done (and under an hour to configure and launch I must add).
So hopefully you’ll like the site as much as I do and find it not only aesthetically pleasing but also easy to use.


If yesterday was spa day, Thursday was cleaning out my jewelry box that I’ve been lugging around for the last year day. I cannot even tell you what jewelry I DO own that is not with me. Last I knew, it was a lot of bullshit.
If you need a way to procrastinate, untangle your necklaces.
Pro Tip: If you slide the chains through straws, they won’t tangle up when you’re traveling.


Tuesday afternoon, after reading something or another on the interent, the world began to spin. There were two of everything as I struggled to right myself in my chair, calling out to TheExHusband to come help me. The few seconds it took to get from his office to me was enough for the moment to pass. A terrible low throbbing headache took hold and kept banging on for hours. I laid on the chaise, not doing much of anything as I waited for the headache to subside. It’s not that far-fetched to state I did nothing that evening.
Wednesday I had several appointments in the city that I did not want to miss but the thought of driving 10 miles of two lane country road and another 10 miles on a moderately busy two lane country road made me super anxious. I couldn’t get it out of my head I was going to have an attack while driving and thoughts of, “What would I do? How do I react?” flashing like a movie reel in my brain. I couldn’t shake the IMPENDING DOOM.
Half a Klonopin swallowed.
I did deep breathing and eyes open meditation as I drove, a very light sheen of sweat on my person when I pulled into my parking spot at the salon. The facial included a message of my face, arms/hands, and upper shoulders and i could feel the tension in my body actually getting worse rather than better since I was grinding my teeth every time she was touching me.
Full dose of Klonopin swallowed.
I weaved in and out of anxiety as I went about my day, dreading the thought of driving that 20 miles back to the cabin. Even stopping at Gallegher’s for donuts and cider didn’t really shake the impending doom.
Of course the Klonopin kicked in when I got home and everything was rosy.
Somedays it takes every once out of my being to pretend my heart is not palpitating a million miles a minute, impending doom is in my brain, and I am so scared to exist in this world. Every ounce of my being.
xoxo,
Lisa

This Day in Lisa-Universe: 2001, 2001, 1999

vine/shuffle/jumping jack/hook

Dear Internet,
When I came up with ThePlan, part of the mind/body connection was to get in shape. I’ve been in shape on and off for years, but after being laid up for nearly 18 months from my surgery a few years ago, the in shape part has thrown me ever so far for a loop.
Doing ThePlan has been a massive struggle. I’ve started out strong, fall back, start out strong again, and fallen back again. I’ve made huge mistakes and have claimed some small victories, but it’s been hard to really gauge how I’m doing. I know the bipolar is a mess, even with the drugs it’s been so sporadic, I’ve often wondered if my best bet is to put myself into a psychiatric hospital. But then I’m not really sure what it will do for me outside of what I’m doing now, which is drugs and talk therapy. I am so desperate to have some kind of stability to get me moving forward that I’m willing to do just about anything to grab at it.
I do not want to be at the head space I was late in 2014. Never ever.
So many people are upset/angry/disappointed in me right now, that normally I would find myself begging for forgiveness. With some of them, I have. But the most important thing is to get my head and body into some semblance of stability so I don’t keep making the same mistakes over and over again.
Which is why I was at a 6AM kickboxing class this morning.
I have been walking the track at the local Y every morning this week, and meditating, even on the days when I felt like I could barely get out of bed. Yesterday morning was particularly bad as I felt like even doing my 8 laps around the inside track was going to do me in. Even having heart raising pop music to make it fun, wasn’t doing it for me. When I got home, my brain was on such fire, I planted my hands on the kitchen sink, huffing cold air via the open window to calm me down.
And like a switch, it’s off again and I start to feel better. I’m sure the Klonopin helped.
The issue with me is that for most of the time, I present as high functioning (as well as a medical curiosity). I’ve been able to accomplish a lot in my life that most bipolars cannot: I’ve finished school, not once but thrice. I’ve had long term relationships. I’ve held down jobs. I’m not on drugs and I’m not promiscuous (two massive bipolar traits).
But it’s a struggle. It’s all a struggle to do these things and stay on the golden path. I’m not sure where I get the strength to push myself forward, but it’s there and it’s real. I’ve grown up with having little or no support for this disease and the only person I could count on is myself. Even those who are close to me, who have given me support and understanding, can only do so much.
I have to continue to save myself. No one else can do this for me. At times, I’ve been wholly naive to think they could, but they can’t. I’m going to go forward and I’m going to fuck up again. But I have to recognize, really recognize, that I am human and I’m bound to make mistakes. The goal, then, is to catch myself during these mistakes and right them before they get out of hand.
Throw in my other conditions (borderline personality disorder, anxiety, ADHD), and I’ve got a delightful cocktail of fire happening in my brain.
TSTBEH recently finished my book and found it weird and insightful. Weird because he was there during that year in San Francisco, my love, and insightful because he was able to judge me then versus me now. Then I was careless, an asshole, out of control, and financially unstable. I’ve made extraordinary strides not to be that person and he did comment on that. I’m much more able discern when the crazy is coming and how to do some kind of self-care, even when it feels like I’ve fallen off the wagon. But there are a lot of patterns still being repeated, that I’m continually self-sabotaging my own happiness by believing that external things will make me happy (which, to be fair, I’ve discovered they actually do not). That I don’t allow myself to take pleasure in the small things or accomplishments (woo! I have three degrees! Who’d see that coming?).
I can do a lot of things.
Some have called this site nothing but navel gazing, which to be honest, it is. This site is a blessing and a curse. A blessing because it is my own form of talk therapy and a curse because it has all of memories from it all, the good, the bad, and the ugly. Most of all, it’s a crucial reminder of my own humanity.
I’m not asking anyone for forgiveness. I’m not asking anyone to stand by me, but what I am asking is that you understand. You understand that for me, daily existence is a struggle. That for what some of you seem like simple tasks, for me are sometimes monumental journeys.
But I can taste the joy. I’ve seen it and I’ve felt it, the closest I’ve come in a very long time, if ever. Working towards that joy, no matter what methods I use, is my new drug.
I hope to be addicted for a very long time.
xoxo,
Lisa

This Day in Lisa-Universe: 2014, 2003, 2001, 1999

sunshine / eye cancer

Dear Internet,
The weather in the greater Toronto area on my way to the airport this morning matched my mood: cold, grey, and snowy. There is no party like a lisa-pity party, and I am the queen of the revelling.
Back in the winter of 2010, when TSTBEH and I were living in a hotel for a few weeks while waiting to hear about whether or not we had Throbbing Manor, a piece of fluff landed in my eye. I could feel its prickliness in my eye socket and I could not, for the life of me, get it out. I took out my contacts, drowned my eyes in saline solution, and I still could not dislodge the fluff.
By this point, I started to become hysterical and nothing could calm me down. The fluff went from being fluff to my own convincing I had eye cancer. TSTBEH could not calm me down, even after several great examinations revealed nothing, I was convinced I was dying, or at the best, would lose an eye. TSTBEH forced me to take a Klonopin and within 20 minutes I was snoozing on the bed, calm for all the world to see.
I tell this story with great relish, and TSTBEH and I laugh at my own monstrosity of thinking I was dying. That’s how panic attacks work, in a nutshell, where something as innocuous as a piece of fluff in my eye speeds up within nanoseconds to be a death threat.
My world is always ending.
Last night was a night that rivaled eye cancer to the point where I called TSTBEH from Toronto hysterically crying. My world had crashed, again, and I had no one to hold me. No one to pet me. No one to make the pain go away. TSTBEH, not one to miss a beat, had me sing the 12 days of pugmas, to the tune of 12 days of Christmas, inserting the word pug for the items. E.g. On the first day of pugmas, my true love gave me to me, a pug in a pear tree. From one to twelve, I sang the entire song between hiccups and the odd crying, which finally calmed me  down. I was hung over from all the Klonopin I had taken that week, so that was out of the question.
I was sitting in my seat, head pressed against the inside hull of plane, thinking about all of these things and lots more. The last week had been beyond emotional draining. I couldn’t cry anymore, couldn’t think anymore, and I had no idea where my life was going to go.
The plane speeds up and I love the feel of gravity pushing me back into my seat. This is how emotional flight feels; the pull of my stomach back that feels like I’m being manipulated by a puppeteer. I have no control over the emotional flight just as I have no control over the real one. I just let it go.
As we climb through the clouds, beyond the snow, my face began to feel hot. I cracked an eye open and saw the sun, shining so bright and clear, I had forgotten the feel of warmth against my skin.
I realised then, something that I’ve always known but had misplaced, that even when the sky is cloudy, that above the clouds the sun is always shining.
xoxo,
Lisa

This Day in Lisa-Universe: 2004, 2002, 1999

daily entry: January 30, 2015

Dear Internet,
HEY! My eBook is officially now live on Amazon:
TLC-Cover-Final

  • Morning ritual: Wake up, use the facilities, pop contacts in, take drugs, turn kettle on for tea, figure out breakfast. While the kettle is heating up, fill last nights Bopple and also the humidifier. With tea and breakfast in hand, check email, Facebook, Twitter. Respond as necessary
  • Planned on going to the gym and co-working space but ended up working close to three hours doing prep for so glad is my heart. (SUBMIT! Please.)
  • Showered and ran errands: Bank (quarters for laundry), Kohls/Macy’s/Penney’s/H&M (futile search for dress shirts for next week), Yankee Candle, LUSH, CVS, post office, dry cleaners. Took about three or so hours
  • Came home, depanted, lunched, and then napped
  • Worked on this entry and prepped Collectioun of Cunnynge Curioustes for January 31
  • Prepped for my trip to Toronto
  • Prepped the next issue of Skaldic Press Presents
  • Filed DMCA take down notice because some twat is stealing my work
  • Bed ritual: refilled humidifier, grab Bopple for the night, take contacts off and wash fash; use the facilities.
  • Read Fool by Christopher Moore before having a pretty good physical anxiety attack.

This is where the catch-22 comes in, right? I’m feeling not at all anxious, the anxiety hits as traveling pain that feels like I’m on the verge of having a heart attack. So then I actually start getting panicky and the pressure increases. None of my old tricks were working, so Klonopin it is! When I finally conked out, holding teddy of course, it was around 2AM. I then woke up at 4, 5, and 7. That part has been the same since October — waking up every couple of hours. I’m not dreaming because I’m not falling into REM sleep (not the band), but in the first few hours of my waking up for the day, I feel rested. Then I start to fall apart as the day progresses because I’m so tired.
xoxo,
Lisa

This Day in Lisa-Universe: 2014, 2010, 1999

bury the lede

Dear Internet,
It’s a clear night here on the east coast and I was outside having a smoke (or three), watching planes fly to and fro across the Sound. People winging their ways across the pond or coming back, minutes or hours from seeing their loved ones, taking a risk, starting a journey, or fleeing from a thing that is chasing them. This is an exercise I’m most intimate with, this thinking what this world around me is doing as it continually moves even if I’m standing still. In that frame, I felt insignificant and yet godlike. I have been all of those people, even if I am none of them now.
These are the times I feel most alone and most connected to others, for I feel the weight of their expectations, their glories, their regrets, and all other human emotion on my being. I was none of them and yet all of them. Here in this now, I am constantly running even in my brain and my energy packs are growing thin. I am gasping for breath and my head is on fire, even though I feel like I’m watching everything happening from an outside body. I watch my body move, smile, laugh, and fuck while my brain is somewhere else.
Brendan tipped me off to a service called ZocDoc, a service that allows you to search for doctors in your area and also allow you to narrow by insurance. You know, something your insurance provider should allow you to do without having to jump 15 hoops. I found a prescribing psychiatrist who had appointments open that day and by that evening, I had scripts for Lamictal, Abilify, and my trusty favorite, Klonopin.
Thus, I’m back on the drugs again.
Dr. P. recommended I not go down this road again until I was feeling more sure and stable in my current locale, but neither of us could have predicted that I would spin this far out of control. While he’s been keeping in touch with me, thank Nigel for that, I’m swinging too fast that by the time I talk to him, I’m stable for the moment again. But the moods are shifting too fast and too furious.
I need help.
Every day is as unpredictable as it possibly can be. Some days I’m up at and at ’em at a reasonable hour and days like Tuesday, I’m in bed all day crying or having some sort of massive panic attack. Others are a combination of the two. No one day is like its predecessor.
My smoking habit comes and goes, though if my need for control wears its hat properly, that is something I can fix so I’m quitting again. Tomorrow I plan on working on a daily schedule for myself to get in the grove to create a infrastructure and wait for job prospects to pan out.
During all of this, I’ve interviewed for two positions, of which one I was told to expect a follow up for a second interview while I was passed on the other. A third job prospect with an Ivy has weeded me from the pile of potentials to passing on to the selection committee for the position. This means nothing, no interview has been forthcoming as of yet, but it also means everything because of the potential interview. So while I’m emotionally falling apart, I am in some small ways, keeping my shit together.
That bit is important. I marvel at myself for having been able to not spiral so far out towards the sun.
The inability to articulate, when my verbal word retrieval fails me, has also been a huge part of the problem. I should be writing, even privately, but I haven’t been. Perhaps this is part of the problem I’m having in finding my footing. Not being able to communicate even to myself what’s in my head (even if scattered), which makes it even more difficult to communicate to those around me.
Right now, I do not know where I will end up or what I’ll be doing. But I keep reminding myself this is all very temporary, this shifting, while I wait for my moods to stabilize. Patience.
There are things I am certain of, of things I must do. But I must learn, above all else, patience. That will be my greatest struggle and fight, to remain patient as all of this works itself out.
While there is life, there is hope.
xoxo,
Lisa

life-ring enclosure

Dear Internet,
Yeah, it’s been awhile. I’m at an undisclosed location for the week to make some hard choices, something I thought I did ages and ages ago when I decided to upend my life but apparently not as clear cut as I thought.
How did I get here? (Car and credit cards, but that’s the logistics and not the reasoning.)
While I’ve been doing a fairly good job of keeping my train wreck of a life off the internets except when absolutely necessary, you lot always knew the ends of my decisions and not the process of the whys. That was perhaps the most uncharacteristic thing about this whole blasted mess is that I’ve always kept a written track of what I’m doing and why, but as I’m being dragged through the mud across the internet due to #TeamHarpy1, I thought it might be just a bit wise to not to publicly say a damn thing.
But as the weeks have gone on, the impact of that internalization is damaging not just my brain, but also my body. I get random hives. My period is showing up every two weeks. I wake up at 4AM on an almost daily basis in a complete state of panic no amount of Klonopin can seem to fix. My moods are cycling so hard that I cannot trust what I’m feeling one minute to the next. I am free falling emotionally that what seemed like a brilliant decision one moment can feel great regret the next, which alternates with almost complete stoicism with emotional shutting down. I have been in tears so much, I’m surprised I’m not a prune.
What seemed so crystal clear weeks ago is now muddled and chaotic.
In order to regain control I made a few concrete decisions: Disconnect from the internet for awhile and find some place to be alone for a few days to clear my head and do some really hard thinking. But fuck the haters, I am going to put everything out on the damned blog. Maybe seeing it in print will help with the clarity and it will keep those who are needing to know how I’m doing.
So now you know WHY I’m here, so let’s move to the WHAT.
The stories consist of three main characters: Myself, TheBassist, and TheSoonToBeExHusband. So I’ll give you the tl;dr for the moment, with a fuller explanation tomorrow: I am in love with two men.
I did not leave TheSoonToBeExHusband for TheBassist. TheBassist and I started a relationship after I separated from TheSoonToBeExHusband. My marriage had been deteriorating for the last several years and this past spring, I had a sit down with TheSoonToBeExHusband about working on our marriage. He agreed to work with me on making changes. It didn’t happen. This was not the first time I had a sit down with him but it was the last. I had originally planned on using my year long writing sabbatical to also get my life back on track and hoped TheSoonToBeExHusband would come with me on that journey. When it became clear that he had no intent, I left.
TheBassist entered after the separation. We met up to see if the spark was still there after so many years. It was not a spark, but an explosion. He offered me many things TheSoonToBeExHusband would not and it was a chance for a true partnership with someone who would and could be my lover and equal.
So I decided to take a risk.
During the period as I started getting things ready, I felt very lucid and clear about all of my decision making. I had gone through a series of internal checklists and worked with my therapist on making sure I was doing the rational thing. Yes, there was emotions involved but I needed to also make sure what I was doing was not impulsive but the right choice for me.
And it felt right. Up until the day a few weeks after that I woke up out of a dead sleep at 4AM, woke TheBassist and said in all seriousness, “Why should I stay?”
And my emotional state has been getting progressively worse ever since.
To be clear, nothing has “happened.” TheBassist and everyone here have been beyond fantastic. I’ve been treated like visiting royalty and if I am indeed having a nervous breakdown, I couldn’t ask for better group of people to love me as I went through it. Also to the clear, TheSoonToBeExHusband has done nothing wrong since I left. He’s been an utter gentleman and is completely supportive of me.
This is nothing more than a pure case of my brain eating itself with something needs to be sorted and soon before I crack.
And with that, now I slumber. Until tomorrow.
xoxo,
Lisa

1. #teamharpy: The flurry of activity after the public announcement of the case in mid-September has died down a bit, but two new recent articles in well regarded spaces (one a professional library publication and the other, a oft quoted law blog) has brought a flurry of new support AND haters to the fold. I’ve been laying low on Twitter, even more so after reading the hashtag, as it causes some massive FEELS. In addition to the slagging across Twitter, nina and I are being eviscerated across other social networks (reddit, Facebook groups, blogs, and so forth) on everything from we’re too ugly (her) or fat (me) to get harassed to questioning our mental health (mainly mine). Of course there is always the question of the legitimacy of our complaints with complete dismissal of nina and I as human beings because she’s transgendered and I’m bipolar.
After the first few dozen rounds by anonymous cowards on reddit and blog comments, my skin has grown thick, but the sheer viciousness and regularity still surprises me. What is also interesting is how much of my life is being scrapped from this site, digested, and reframed in an attempt to shame me. Which is kind of hilarious in its own right since I’ve always been brutally honest in the presentation of myself to the world. I have nothing left to lose, I’ve been saying that since the beginning, and yet not a day goes by where someone attempts to be helpful by pointing out I’m mentally unsound because of REASONS. It’s extraordinary the lengths trolls will go through to make their, albeit weak, point when it’s all been right there, in public view, for years. Trolls may be vicious, but they certainly are stupid.

This day in Lisa-Universe: 2013, 1998

the gods ruffled their skirts

Dear Internet,
It’s late and I’ve just come back inside after hanging out on the front deck for a bit. It’s dark out; the kind of dark that is so deep and black, even the pin pricks made by the stars seem like interlopers to the night.
The kind of night made for Jason Voorhees.
(Last night was even spookier. The master bedroom is the in the loft of the cabin, I had the windows open and heard every movement by every beast in the area.)
I keep processing how geographically isolated I am right now. The nearest town is six miles down a straight road (or six miles in the other direction over a curvy road that hugs Lake Michigan) and while I have neighbors across the road who have lights on at their place, it could be for security rather than notification someone is at home. The only sounds I’ve heard all evening are the ticking of the clock in the main room of the cabin, the water heater and fridge kicking on and off, and the accordion sound of the plastic bag hung around the internal open exit of the metal chimney that used to connect to a gas stove.

To illustrate
To illustrate

(We discovered while the chimney is screened and capped outside, moths, rain, and other tiny creatures were still getting inside so TheHusband mcguyvered the bag to catch the detritus from the outside world. It works, but the downside is the bag moves when the wind moves so it blooms and closes with each movement. It’s alternately creepy to hear but also strangely soothing at the same time.)
I was feeling exhausted after my long day yesterday and put myself into bed at 8PM, with the laptop in tow. I started doing research for my book and when I eventually took a break, it was nearing 1AM. I took melatonin for the first time as I needed to get some relief to sleep without taking Klonopin, which when taken for consecutive periods, makes me feel drugged the following day. The melatonin worked as I was out within 10 minutes.
It worked so well, I didn’t wake up until nearly 11:30AM, 9.5 hours later.
I planned my day  around having dinner with my brother this evening, since I did not know how long that was going to take and I wanted to make sure I got a lot of work done before we went out.
That did not work out as well as I had hoped.
I was planning on doing more research and start working on the structure of the book when I realised tomorrow was the 16th anniversary of my online journal and I had planned on writing something to celebrate. The draft had been sitting for months as a reminder and I figured it would only take me a few hours to get it written, polished, and formatted and then I could continue with the rest of my plans.
I, regrettably, was horribly off on my time management.
I had the piece half done before my brother and his coworker showed up around 3PM and they were itching to have an early dinner. As the restaurant we were going to didn’t open until 4PM, that meant drinks until it was time to leave. On our way to the restaurant, the TPS was showing my front right tire was low on air, which was odd because I just had the tires checked on Monday before heading out of town.
After dinner, we drove to the village gas station/grocery store/pizza place/deli/butcher/movie rental place to check the pressure and all of the tires were registering at the right PSI. After picking up a few staples at the gas station/grocery store/pizza place/deli/butcher/movie rental place, I headed back to the cabin, parked, and read the owners manual to figure out what the fuck was going on. Apparently when the pressure of the tires is changed (and in this case, my tires were over inflated to 39 PSI instead of regulated 32 PSI), the TPS needs to be reset, which didn’t happen. I reset the TPS and the warning gauge finally cleared. However, my brother noted when following me into the village, my left rear driver’s tire was rotating at an odd angle, meaning it wasn’t rolling up and down but rather it looked like it was rolling more at an angle.
(The tire place I got my tires from has a store in Traverse City, so I’m going to be heading there tomorrow morning to have a check. If there is something majorly wrong, while there is no MINI dealer in the area there is a BMW one, so I should be fine.)
By the time I was done fucking with my car and getting back into the groove, it was coming on 6PM. I figured I had a good six more hours to work tonight, with maybe one MAYBE two hours geared towards finishing the anniversary piece.
That piece was finished at 10:30PM and came in at 2300 words. Then it was a break to sit outside for a bit, listen to the gods ruffle their skirts, and here we are.
Tomorrow I’m going to buckle down and start making progress on my large writing ToDo list. Right now the goal is to get up fairly early, get into town to have the tire looked at and dealt with and be back at the cabin no later than noon. Thursday, sans car issues, will be more of the same of writing. Friday I’m going kayaking with Emili, and Kristin is coming out to have bro time on Friday evening. On Saturday evening, Kristin and I are going to head up to the dark sky park to watch the stars with my telescope and camp out for the night. Sunday we head back to the cabin, and then we head to our respective homes.
xoxo,
Lisa

This Day in Lisa-Universe: 2010, 2008, 1999

daily walk: the floating head tree

Dear Internet,
Last night I was utterly exhausted when I crawled into bed around midnight with the hope that by reading, I’d be able to nod off and get to sleep. My brain had other things on its mind because I finished the book around 1:30A, and still wide awake at 5:11AM watching Bob’s Burgers.
I took half a Klonopin around 4ish, which I think finally drove me the edge into wonderland of sleep. However, I bolted upright in bed at around 9:30AM as if I had slept for days.
TheHusband, who was appreciative of me being quiet as a mouse while I watched terrible television last night, tried to cajole to go back to sleep but I was BRIGHT EYED AND BUSHY TAILED. LIke a squirrel on speed.
I decided to harness this extra energy by walking to the Downtown Market for their Saturday Farmer’s Market since we needed an assortment of veg. The round trip is about a mile and would also count as part of my daily walk series, PLUS getting some kind of exercise should help with the mania.
Win-win all the way around.
floatingheadtree
As we walked to the market, I had forgotten the house with the floating heads was on our way, which marked the perfect beginning of the journey.
downtownmarket
Because of some dilly-dallying on my end at home, we didn’t get to the market until after 12PM, so most of the fruit/veg were picked over but we still ended up scoring us some great finds. We were hoping to have lunch at Grampas’s Pasty Co., because goddamn their Conrish influenced pasties are delicious, but they were down to two flavors we weren’t rather fond of so we skipped them this week.
After loading up our messenger bags with our finds, we walked the Market’s inside hall to see if we were missing any else and to get lunch ideas. We ended up with a few treats from Sweetie-licious Bakery Cafe for later, but still no lunch options were tempting us. Since we’re right downtown, we decided to see what was open.
stellas-2
Stella’s is one of our favorite spots to eat in the downtown core. They have awesome burgers, great fries, and metric fuckton of old video games to play. But we weren’t in the mood for Stella’s so we kept walking and ended up at Meena’s Joint, which serves stoner food with a Rasta vibe.
TheHusband might looks like he partakes but we are aging alternative hipsters and coupled with the Coheed and Cambria on the stereo, we were definitely not the clientele they are catering to. The food is basically anything that could constitute a sandwich filling packed into a grilled tortilla and the taste was merely, “meh.”
With our bellies full, I was ready to keep on walking around downtown, maybe do a stroll through GRAM or a saunter down Monroe Center,  but the threatening rain finally decided to open up the skies.
We decided to just walk home in rainy, companionable silence.
fitbitwalk-july12
Distance: 3 miles
Walk time: 1:00:54 (This is total walk time, does not include time we shopped at the market or lunch)
Pace: 20:17/mile
xoxo,
Lisa

This day in Lisa-Universe in: 2010

TheHusband came in and told me how much he appreciated me and is encouraging of my work. I am noting this as I am naturally suspicious.

Dear Internet,
In our household, neither TheHusband nor myself are one for blowing smoke up each other’s arses. Thus when he showed up in my office this morning to tell me how much he appreciates everything I do and asked how he could be more encouraging of my work, I was naturally suspicious.
TheHusband is a snugglesaurus par excellence, but expressing himself verbally is not his forte. Hence my suspicion when the outpouring comes because it is so unexpected that I am inclined to narrow my eyes a little and start probing him with questions.
When you think about it, I’m the one being the jerk here when he’s the one wearing his heart on his basketball shorts.
(And he is the only person alive who is allowed to call me “Pookie Bear” without irony or fear of losing an appendage.)
It has been documented we have a very complicated mating ritual.

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My brain is on fire. It is spinning so fast, I feel at any moment it is going to whiz out of my skull and splat against the wall.
Mania has beset me this week, which is why I’ve been negligent on the daily walks. When it gets to the point where I need to start taking Klonopin to bring me down to normal human speed, even a half dose in the middle of the day, on a near daily basis, productivity slows down to a crawl. If I take Klonopin more than a couple of days in a row, even if my head is buzzing a million miles an hour, I physically feel exhausted and barely able to function.
It becomes a delicate balance of what can I accomplish before needing to take the drugs so I can stop being in mental pain.

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This week was  filled with Adult Responsibilities aka I had to wear pants and leave the house. I met with our new CPA on Wednesday and my lawyer on Thursday, both for the reason of completing a LLC on Pookie Bear Industries (not really the name though TheHusband was championing for it).
Why the LLC? Well, a couple of reasons with the main one being as that I’m in the process of lining up some freelance work, I need to be able to write off expenses related to the freelancing. I’m also planning on doing some self-publishing work that if I have a LLC, it will just look better professionally.
(There a metric fuck ton of homework that I need to do for both the CPA and the lawyer, so I’m trying to squeak that out when my head is not inflamed. Sometimes being an adult is hard.)

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I knew going into this I would not be writing every single day, at least not on a single project everyday, and I did know I needed to square out space for household activities to allow me to write uninterrupted. When I’m at home, I feel inclined to do all the domestic work needed and letting that overrun when I should be doing something related to this new adventure. But as I start to get a feel for my schedule and tackling much needed domestic things and Adult Responsibilities, it often comes to early evening before I even have that space to write. Coupled with the mania as of late, it’s all been a well managed chaos.
I will say I’m pretty pleased that even with how my brain is feeling, I set out a small goal todos every day and get those done without too much pain or stress. I’ve started documenting every single thing I’ve done for the day, no matter how minute, in DayOne so I can have better accountability and will making writing up my monthly summary easier.
Monday I’m heading up to Throbbing Cabin solo to work for a week without interruption. The goal is to get the bulk of the work I’ve outlined a few days ago started and in some sort of decent shape. This weekend will be spent doing work on the back end of the work. Without having a snugglesaurus TheHusband around or domesticity to tempt me out of my working lair, I will be able to buckle down and zone out in my worlds.
The kind of day I’m structuring will float something like this: Wake up, take a hike around the area (hence the daily walks will resume), get some writing done. Eat something. Get some more writing done. Eat some more. Do a bit of reading. Hang out at the beach with my telescope. Sleep.
If that does work, I am hoping to be travelling up to Throbbing Cabin as much as I can solo until the snows fall. And maybe, if TheHusband is very good, he can come visit.
xoxo,
Lisa

This Day in Lisa-Universe: 2011, 2003

daily walk: Bear Paw Pizza

Dear Internet,
Our story begins last night when TheHusband and I decided to head up to Northport, a village 20 miles north of Throbbing Cabin in the tip of the peninsula accessible by the lovely twisty turny M22, where we went for dinner and to catch the Fourth of July fireworks.
Last year we showed up when the fireworks were beginning and parking was near impossible, so this year we thought we would be slick and go super early, get a good spot, have dinner, and wander around town before the show began at dusk.
Aren’t we a clever lot?
We arrived sometime after 6PM and found parking easily in the downtown area, which was a few blocks from the marina where the fireworks are held. People were already picnicking and saving spots four plus hours before the show was to begin, so you know this event is legit.
Dinner was pulled pork sammiches with sweet potato chips at the Garage Grill & Fuel Lot, which had all the makings of becoming a favorite of ours. I thought the pulled pork was heavy on the grease and less on the BBQ, while TheHusband raved about how great the pork was smoked. The sweet potato chips and coleslaw were divine, so I didn’t trouble myself much over the greasy BBQ.
All of this washed down with the nectar of the gods, Labatt Blue.
labattblue
We walked around town for a bit after dinner, having a drink at Northport Brewing, before heading over camp our spots at the park for the night.
Sometime after we finished dinner, and around the time we got drinks, I started feeling not so hot. My period started that afternoon before we left, so I put the blame on it even though I kept feeling like I needed to throw up which was NOT a typical period accoutrement.
The rest of the night alternately crawled and sped on by while I struggled with brain issues, stomach issues, and period issues. Plus, the weather had turned decidedly cooler, dipping into the 50s before the evening was over.
Last night would be the second night in a row I would need to use a heating blanket. Pure Michigan, my arse.
TheHusband and I played Words with Friends during the wait for the boom show, but the battery life on my phone was draining insanely fast and when it hit 23%, immediately depleted itself to 0%. I managed to catch a vague sharp picture of floating lanterns being released into the sky but not a single image of the fireworks show.

floatinglanterns
Floating lanterns before the fireworks show. The white blob is the moon, not aliens.

The crowd was pulsing as the night wore on. Drunk soccer moms and their families camped in front of us and became surly when we declined the cupcake topper American flags they offered us in their half-hearted attempt of friendly patriotism.
Every once in a while a drunk voice would yell, “‘MURICA!” and the crowd would laugh. Everyone around us seemed to be having a good time while my mood became darker, my stomach was in agony, and the temperature continued to drop.
We could see the fireworks show from down the bay in Traverse City and across the bay over in the Eastport area, both of which began at around 10PM. Northport advertise “at dusk,” but actually start their show at 10:30PM and at 10:30PM on the dot, the show began. After 20 minutes of their half-hearted fireworks show, TheHusband gave in to my agony and suggested we leave to beat the crowd.
On the drive back, I kept muttering, “I feel like I’m going to throw up” and “I don’t feel good” and YET, nothing was forthcoming. I drowned some Pepto when we got home, took a Klonopin for my mood, and went to bed.
Three hours later, I up in bed out of a dead sleep. “I don’t feel good,” I said to myself as I made my way down to the bathroom.
Literally the moment I flipped on the bathroom light, the heaving started. I knelt and clutched the toilet as dinner, beer, and Pepto all came back up. The force of the constant heaving turned my throat raw and my stomach into pin cushion.
Once everything was out of my system, I brushed my teeth, washed my face, and crawled back upstairs into bed. TheHusband rubbed my back while I fell back asleep, finally having relief in getting rid of the alien out of my stomach.
This morning was slow going.
I didn’t wake up until later, snuggling under TheHusband’s arms while he read Grantland or some other ESPN derivative on his tablet. Today we were going to go on a hike, then head to Traverse City for Cherry Festival and see Emili. None of those things happened. Instead, after a brunch of toast and OJ, we got dressed to run errands – like picking up a ladder and buying tampons. (The bloodwolves are devourous creatures.)
We crisscrossed Home Depot so many times, we actually got a mile in which means — hurray! Walk for the day completed.
Dinner was depending on if my stomach felt better (pizza) or not (burgers on the grill). I figured since my stomach was already all fucked up from whatever the fuck it is I ate the day before, eating cheese was going to be fair less painful.
I had been bragging to TheHusband for the last few years that when I used to come up to this area with TheEx, we would get pizza from Bear Paw and it was the best pizza I ever had.
bearpawpizza
Distance: A mile round trip through Home Depot
Walk time: N/A
Pace: N/A
Apparently my memories of the pizza are rose colored memories because once that first slice hit my mouth, I had to concede it wasn’t that great. I tentatively ate a few slices while we discussed the merits of good vs bad pizza. After dinner, we declared to the other now that dinner was complete, we would relax for a bit before doing some long overdue DIY around the cabin and putting our telescope together to take to the beach later in the evening.
stgeorge
The flag of St. George flies at Throbbing Cabin. ‘Murica.

Five hours later, I’m still on the chaise writing. TheHusband is still in his chair reading and we’ve been listening to a mix of Calypso, Mambo, and ’60s protest music while we did our individual things.
Fuck it. It’s vacation time. The gutters can wait another day to be cleaned; the hammock will get hung at some point. The stars will still be there tomorrow for our gaze.
xoxo,
Lisa

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