Friday, February 27, 2015

While teleworking

Me: The downside to teleworking is that there is no vending machine nearby.

Me: Well maybe that is the good side.

Coworker: You must have other garbage.

Me: I'm going to send you a pic of my fridge.

Me: Me and my stupid "Can't eat what I don't have!" diet.

Coworker: That's horrible. And the lack of food other than the Gefilte fish is horrible too.

Me: I laud your ability to know exactly what's in the jar labeled "____ fish." Not many would have know. Especially as there are pictures of beige, distinctly un-fish-shaped lumps on the label!

Tuesday, February 24, 2015

It gets deeper. Also, take your vitamin D.

Some things:

1. Panera, a place I have resisted solely because I have no use for bread or pastries, has come out with an addictive new stew. It's this lentil-quinoa thing with tomatoes and lemon, and I must figure out how to fucking make it. If you, by any chance, have stumbled across their secret recipe, please share!

Stew, however, is another story.
2. My brakes have been freezing up in this frigid weather. It's somewhat alarming to back out of a parking spot only to find a rock-hard pedal upon shifting into forward. That happened on an ice patch and I continued sliding until I got enough of my bearings back to yank on the emergency brake. Car-guy dad says it might be water in the brake line since apparently this isn't supposed to happen. Car's in the shop now.

3. In fucking bone-bruised toe news, if you have ANY kind of bone issue, you best make sure you're not deficient in vitamin D. Calcium needs that shit to lay down new bone for repair. (D'oh!)

4. Amazing Boyfriend and I are going on our first trip together this weekend! Things continue to blossom beautifully. It's not that we haven't hit any friction at all in 4 months, it's that when we have,  cliche as it sounds, it ends up bringing us closer.

I'm learning about a new kind of trust. Some of this my last BF showed me, but is expanding now. Not trust like "I trust that he won't cheat on me" but trust like "I can tell him how I feel and he won't react in a way that hurts me."

When there are tender spots or triggers or difficult topics, Amazing Boyfriend and I still take care of each other. There isn't a sense of betrayal over honest feedback. Toxic reactions include shaming your partner for their feelings ("How could you SAY that?!?") but hey, you feel what you feel, and both of us understand this. I can even feel something that doesn't make sense and he's still tender with me.

Case in point: last week, I found myself feeling vulnerable after hearing a story with his ex. No reason to doubt his feelings or worry that he wanted to reignite their union -- at least not logically -- but I needed a little extra TLC just to feel connected.

Maybe I need more flair...
I didn't want to ask for it or even mention that I was feeling vulnerable. I think it's okay to have a past and it's even okay to still care about someone from that past without it threatening our present -- we are human, afterall. You don't stop loving people you've loved. You stop pouring so much of your present energy into them, maybe, but you still wish them only the best.

Anyway, he's uncannily observant (and I am terrible at hiding my feelings) so he could tell right away I was preoccupied. He's tuned on a deep level (even though we are so young!) and took me into his arms to murmur love notes into my hair. I melted into him, it was exactly what I needed. I didn't need him to erase the past. I just needed the present to feel very vibrant.

Anyway, life is good. Even though it's February and was 4 degrees out when I woke up this morning.

Sunday, February 22, 2015

The best gift we can give our partners

Friend: Have you read this? I would like your thoughts, please.

Me: It's good enough advice -- basically, be a decent person and treat your partner with the utmost of kindness. The most important part of that root is being emotionally healthy because that staves off the everyday outside things that wear on us from affecting the relationship.

You've heard of Dr. Gottman and his research? 4 behaviors that predict divorce?

Here is the reason why being emotionally healthy is so critical: the behaviors in that original blog post are toxic. And if you talk to most people, they will agree we shouldn't do them. But yet people are doing them anyway. Why? What's breaking down between how we think we should behave vs. what we actually do?

People usually get sidetracked by intense emotions. They mean well, but when triggered or depleted (hungry, angry, lonely or tired) there's less control. That's when we're susceptible to the outburst or snide remark. But if people were in tune with how they felt, if they could sense what they needed before their logical brain "flooded," they could focus on getting those needs met rather than reacting in a way that could cause lasting damage. Research has shown that every negative experience a couple has needs to be offset by five positive experiences in order to outweigh it.

The brain is a great pattern-detection computer, constantly scanning situations. We assign meaning to our experiences. It's not always accurate -- sometimes we react to an internal trigger. "Last time that happened, I got hurt!" The brain, in the face of a perceived threat, seeks self-preservation.

It doesn't really have well-thought out strategies so it resorts to whatever it learned works; often behaviors that were effective when young.  Shutting down, yelling, etc. -- reactions are as varied and complicated as people. This happens whether or not the threat is real or even consciously known.

So good emotional health is like good physical health. Most people understand what we should do but doing actual situps is a whole lot different than simply imagining your future six-pack abs.

This is where self-care comes in.

Life can be hard. People cope. If done to an extreme, coping can distance us from ourselves, from knowing what we want and need and being able to be present to meet those needs. If we're numb or sufficiently soothed from coping, we won't take the actions we need for our own self-care.

Meditation is a great tool because it reinforces presence, tolerance, rewriting the meaning we assign to our experiences, and redirection from reaction. It's like situps for the brain. Over time, it becomes easier to connect with needs and manage emotions.

I think this is why the path to enlightenment is also the path to more fulfilling relationships. They're all tied together. The best gift we can give our partners is taking care of ourselves.

Tuesday, February 17, 2015

"Could we pls have moar sex? Kthxbai" card - this is hilarious.

I honestly cannot BELIEVE this card passed an editorial content review. I found it Valentine's shopping. Yes, that is my thumb, gripping the card in disbelief.

Apparently, this card is meant for a market of people who want to be having more sex with their partner but are not. It's obviously not for new partners, single people without partners, partners who are hot & heavy for each other, or any other segment of population who is satisfied with their sex life. Otherwise, why bring it up? The only reason to buy a CARD to mention that you "like having sex" with your partner is because you need to have the awkward "WE ARE NOT HAVING ENOUGH SEX" conversation.

Granted, "enough" sex is relative but it's not "enough" if even one member of the pair thinks so. Why things are disconnected can be myriad and complicated and even justified so I'm totally behind the concept that the presence of a disconnection indicates a good talking point, but bringing it up LIKE THIS? Ohmygod.


"I like having sex with you."
(What's this font??)

Sometimes in this busy world
we forget to slow down
for the special things
that really matter --
like having sex.
So today I'm just taking a moment
to tell you how wonderful it is
to have sex with you.
 For even when we're apart
I'm thinking of sex
we've had in the past
and thinking of sex we've yet to share
You're a special person to me
and that's why having sex with you 
is so very special too!


1. Go ahead, say SEX one more time. It wasn't mentioned enough. I think your partner may not get the point.

2. If you're giving this to someone in a long term relationship, they are more than a "special person." They're probably a spouse or a long term relationship (lack doesn't usually manifest early). So you can just stop pretending that this subject encompasses the entire relationship spectrum.

3. If you must have this conversation with someone you're just dating, isn't it just easier to break up and find someone who "likes having sex"?

4. If you have to mention that you're thinking of "all the sex you've yet to share" (because you're not getting enough now and don't know how else to word it) I hate to break this to you but it ain't going to get better. (Without addressing it, at least -- I have links below.)

5. Isn't it nicer to use more loving terminology? Like, say, "I miss connecting with you" or "our lovemaking makes me feel so close to you, I miss time together, can we make a special date for just each other?" There are any number of ways to gently broach the subject better than the above wording.

So thanks, card makers, for that total crack up!

There is some advice on how to spice up your love life:
It's possible that this card is just a joke. It WAS in the "love & intimacy" section and not the "humor" section, but maybe? Even if not, totes could be!

Monday, February 9, 2015

Realistic Card for Boyfriend

My deepest love,

Sorry I've been unavailable all night while you were texting, wondering where I am.

I was holed up in the bathroom with a pipe auger, needlenose pliers and a tub of benzoyl peroxide. Afterall, I have to prepare for our first Valentine's Day, my dearest. The clock is ticking and it takes time to mangle the second head enough for it to fall off.

Cannot wait. <3

Love always,
Your (hopefully soon will be) beautiful girlfriend

Wednesday, February 4, 2015

Fucking Uncle!!

This isn't going to do me any good, but I need to stop being optimistic for 5 minutes just so I can wallow in shittiness. Afterall, it's been a while, and I'm PMSing. Let's whine for old time's sake.

I almost had a fucking nervous breakdown in the bathroom just now over a fucking PIMPLE.

Oh, excuse me, I meant a boil. Carbuncle. Zit. Cyst. Whatever the fuck it is, it's a fucking second head that has sprouted out of my fucking face and renders me hideous.

 It may even require a change in hairstyle, though bangs look horrid on me.

I have poked at it every day for half a week now, succeeding only in making it redder and angrier. Now it fucking hurts like a mofo if I even go NEAR it and just now, while poking at it, I started to cry.

UNCLE! Fucking uncle, universe, I'm so sick of feeling shitty!!

First, I broke my toe 3 months ago (a "bone bruise" which takes a LONG ass time to heal, as evidenced by its useless purply state), and then I got a terrible sinus infection last month which I think is coming back because my voice sounds nasally and weird, and then last night I was torn out of a sound sleep by some kind of alien being ripping out my insides in preparation for its unwelcome birth.

The pain was so awful that I considered going to the emergency room except I don't even know where a hospital IS around here.

 "Hello, ambulance? Can you come get me?"

I googled my symptoms and learned that when the pancreas decides to digest itself (kindof a big deal), it causes pain similar to the alien birth. So I narrowed it down to one of two things. The good news is, either event escalates until it cannot be ignored so I figured I could kick back until further notice. I may as well get some more sleep before I die, I thought, and writhed until the painkiller kicked in.

So I'm a little stressed but it was the unrelenting zit that tipped me over the edge. UNCLE!!

(ps. Unrelenting Zit is totally the name of my next cover band.)

(pps.  No post is complete without sharing these two horrid zit stories in my past:
(ppps. For anyone wondering about this post's tag "willy willy shit fuck and tits," (below) I direct you to the following clip from The King's Speech. 30 seconds of awesomeness:

(pppps. I forgot to add that my fucking jaw is messed up from the dentist leaning on it while refilling some old cavities. So when alien baby was trying to come out, somehow the pain radiated from my middle and extended all up into my fucking jawbone. Good times at 2am.)

(ppppps. I'm fine now! Who knows what all that was about?)