eeyore_grrl: (Default)
2017-09-01 07:49 pm

for Kathy on her 60th birthday


for Kathy on her 60th birthday



age is nothing but a number
and, damn, you wear each and every year well
decked in purple and stars
	 in glitter and black
		a dash of pink
	like joseph’s coat
			but better

because you are a matriarch
	a woman to lead
	a woman to speak
	a woman to project our voices strong

age 
       is nothing but a number
	a creaking of knees 
		of vertebrae that ache
			of stomach acid burning up your throat
				of cold sweats and hot flashes

you have touched each cliche
	been maiden and mother
		and crone has never looked so good as it does on you	

	you’ve sang so well the songs we need hear

crones have never been more vital 
	as you are now
open your mouth and speak
		     and sing
		     and teach

link arms in strength
	your grandchildren learn your voice
	and are strong

		strong
	
		strong
60 years of heaven and hell
	of sending your husband into literal warzones 
		armed only with his camera
	you kept the home fires burning

	and spoke

	and taught

	and loved

	and grieved

	and loved

you continue to walk in strength and beauty
	you are the gift to so many

kathy
	thank you for being a woman i admire
	thank you for being

			




eeyore_grrl: (Default)
2017-08-19 06:47 pm

My Fibromyalgia Tips

An acquaintance was recently diagnosed with fibromyalgia and was looking for “tips and tricks” for dealing with it. This is the list that I’ve come up with.


1. Remember that the pain is real. THE PAIN IS REAL! Even if there isn't a known cause.

2. I searched far and wide to find a way to track my pain. The best I came up with for me was this app. Now I mostly use it to track when I take my PRN meds, but it is still super helpful. http://fibromapp.com/

3. I have to take it easy. I have to schedule downtime into my life. I can't just run and be interesting all the time anymore.

4. HOT baths help me. Heating pads. Occasionally, ice packs to my back (when the pain is super tight muscles).

5. I have a Massage Envy membership and, usually, get weekly 90 minute massages. I "like" deep tissue, myself. DEEEEP tissue because my upper back tightens into a wall of pain.

6. Be gentle with yourself. You aren't where you want to be with your body, but it is what it is and you have to work with it the best you can.

7. There are a lot of *things* that I get that help. I have several types of back roller that can help me. I have yoga toes thingies (like this https://www.amazon.com/Original-YogaToes-Sapphire-Stretcher-Separator/dp/B002SPV068/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1503193802&sr=8-1-spons&keywords=yoga+toes&psc=1) that help relax my feet. I am well aware that much of chronic pain relief involves spending money. I am aware that that sucks and is massively unfair and unjust.

8. I try to make my life easier, when I can, with things like a housecleaner for the bathrooms and floors. Or using instacart for grocery delivery most of the time. I’ve had to work towards being ok with eating out/ordering in more often than I cook.

9. I am now using a fanny pack (I found a not ugly one) so that carrying a purse doesn't put my body off-kilter and off balance.

10. I got a permanent handicap placard (takes a form from your doctor to go to the DMV).

11. Let yourself get mad, angry, etc when you do. But also, let it pass. Forgive yourself.

12. Accept help when offered. Ask for help when needed. Be okay within yourself needing help.

13. Yoga *really* helped for awhile. But then I had some mechanical issues (meniscus tear). Now I'm not in a place where I can do it, but hope to get to it again. That's okay, too. Yoga is not the panacea that others seem to think it is.

14. Listen to your body. There was a time my lower back hurt. A lot. Maybe it was perimenopausal cramps or maybe just my bad luck. But I sat on the couch with it for days. Ended up being a UTI that turned into a kidney infection. Oops.

15. Find a friend that you can vent at on days that suck. Another good friend of mine has ended up with a fibro diagnosis and we often just bitch at each other on messenger about the suck that is fibro. Neither of us are trying to cure the other one here; we just want to vent.

16. It’s okay to fire your doctor(s) if they don’t believe you or your pain.

17. Paraffin dip. Nice, warm paraffin dip.

18. Read other’s reports about what works and doesn’t work for them. I have gotten many ideas and things to try from reading about other’s fibro or other chronic pain.

19. Don’t forget about pharmaceuticals. There are a few FDA approved meds (none of which seem to work for me). There are some meds that can help various bits of fibromyalgia. There are pain meds that have varying efficacy and varying dangers. Be aware of all sides and don’t suffer needlessly.
eeyore_grrl: (2016/17)
2017-07-19 09:27 pm

LJ Idol 10 - Week 7: Where I'm From


  	       i am from	
(the hudson, part I)	



i am from a city on the hudson 
  green
          trees envy me
  because i walk with the legs they dream of

this river is like sap in my veins
   rooting me
                  to this land
   touching me
                 with beauty
    chaining me
                 with invisible threads

my prayers go out to the river
dropping like child thrown pebbles
       and then forgotten
               as waves devour the ripples
                      of my concern

i envy the trees the simplicity
     of their capture
  they need the land until death calls
  there is no question
                               only dreams

i have the possibility of distancing myself
   the physical        foot     follows    foot    ability

but my roots dig far into this soil
clenching at bedrock
refusing to give me wings



	



		tidal.
	           (the hudson, part II)


the problem with poetry is that
				 sometimes
						the truth changes
there was a time i wrote about the hudson
				 and how it was the blood in my veins	
						how i couldn’t leave its banks
						how it held me there
						chained

it was truth
i ricocheted 
				away and back
ebbing and flowing like its tides

it           was           truth
 
but my truth has changed 
				i have aged and moved
						i am 3000 miles distant
and cannot go back

what was once life-sustaining
				feels more like poison
				tainting me still
				breaking down my shores and sanity
						breaking down myself

this is my truth
i haven’t lied
it’s just that 			the truth
						is tidal








		this is home
           	      (the hudson, part III)

my toes feel that they are made of ice
	crystalised, cold
they reach into unstable bedrock
		avoiding faults
		avoiding fault
this is a new home
	a new place to be and grow
my roots are shallow
		my toes clutch the riverbank 3000 miles away, still
	but here i have planted myself
 like a flag
here
	i have chosen to call home 
here
	i grow and
here 
	i have planted new seeds
			a new life

my son only knows of the hudson river through stories
					    through maps 
					    through pictures on the internet
he doesn’t know about tidal estuaries 
	and the indescribable beauty of my river on a late september day
		when the reds and oranges look like fire and life across the mountain side
	he doesn’t know 
		what it’s like to shovel driveways and slide on ice
	he doesn’t know the endless grey of winter
			when the sun is nothing but a figment
		or the joy of warming weather in the spring
			the first flowers green and delicate poking through the thawing ground

my childhood river is a fairytale
	a story told when i want him to learn something
	morality tales and dragons

		my past is only a storybook setting
		and silicon valley is so real
			where water comes in waves of drought
			rivers the size of creeks on a good day
				fade into fossils
					just memories of what was
		his home is here
	we are planting his roots deep
		finding nourishment and bedrock
		growing down past the moving plates of earth
		reaching for its molten core
	this is home
		the hudson only a shadow in my blood
		
this is home
	i sing of the ocean
			and water the trees



https://youtu.be/4vbirFS7hWo

--------
This poem is written as a triptych, a single poem built in three parts. In this case the poems can be used separately, but form a much fuller picture with all three taken together. In honesty I will tell you that the first two were written long ago (the first being over 12 years ago, when I still lived in New York). If, for the LiveJournal Idol game you feel that I should only be judged on *new* work, feel free to vote for (or not) the last poem. That is new and shiny. Also, it's hard to record a 5 minute poem!
eeyore_grrl: (2016/17)
2017-04-09 04:13 pm

Leaving LJ

I'm not sure when (or if) i'll nuke this account, but I've switched over to Dreamwidth and imported all my posts over there.

I miss the LJ that was, but can't live with the anti-LGBTQA+ that is happening with the new TOS.

:-/
eeyore_grrl: (2016/17)
2017-03-19 02:22 pm
Entry tags:

LJ Idol 10 - Week 12: Salty



			salty


tastebuds stand up and scream
	(they have desires, ya know)
	they demand

	SALT!
	SALT!
	SALT!

they will not be sated until I give in to their demands

i am not the first woman to choreograph
	this dance of desire
		of need

because sometimes bodies bleed 
	and sometimes bodies crave
	and sometimes bodies are in cahoots

you can keep the salt sheen of your skin 
today i salivate at the idea of potato chips
	salty, delicious, delectable, and crunchy
     today that is what can satiate my carnal desires

you can keep your sexy times
	your hot moments behind closed doors
right now those are for other people
		not me

because unless your fingers are covered in salty goodness
			i have no use for your touch
	unless your lips shimmer with oil	
			i shall pass on your kisses
	unless your words bring me closer to salt in my bloodstream	
			i shall have to move on

	my tastebuds are a strong mistress
		i shall succumb 




and, of course, you get a video version, even though you almost didn't:
eeyore_grrl: (2016/17)
2017-03-10 10:25 am

LJ Idol 10 - Week 11: The Blue Hour

		the blue hour


that hour
		just before dawn
	when the day is an empty page
	and the author has spilled inky blue across the sky
that blue hour
		used to feel magical
	because i stayed up until light arrived again in our lives
		we
		      stayed up 
		talking through the night
	learning the sound of heartbeats
	re-creating language 

that hour must have arrived on the wings of pegasi
	because everything was new
					and beautiful
						and right in the world

					i slept with a smile

but time has changed my narrative
	and i dread the coming of dawn
i see the blue hour for what it is
		a dark time
			a blemish on the day
	because i am no longer trading stories and touch through the night
		now
			i’ve stayed awake through the night on the wings of pain and frustration
				my eyesight has become bleary and skewed 
			instead of the times when we used to solve all the world’s problems
				i spend my time staring at a screen
					praying for sleep
						 for relief
					needy in a way i wasn’t when i believed in magic

that inky blue hour is now punctuated by the quick wings of hummingbirds at my window
		drinking what i give them
			thankless, 
				      demanding
				bringing magic back 



See and hear me here:
eeyore_grrl: (2016/17)
2017-03-02 02:47 pm

LJ Idol 10 - Week 10: Take a Hike


		hike

my back throbs 
	a steady staccato of pain
my shoulders 
	knotted, knotting as i write
	pain shooting down to my right elbow
my knees
	crackling louder than bonfire and celebration
	the left one is torn inside


I wish it would all just take a hike
disappear
vanish into thin air
just for a minute, an hour, a day, a lifetime

just
	vanish

if my pain were to disappear i would not mourn for it
	i would wait nervously
		scared of its return
	but i wouldn’t put it on milk cartons
	or interview people about it on tv

i would just

wait

i would slowly learn to be who i am again
walking faster
	stretching further
i would return to yoga
	calm and strength in one

i would play more board games with my family
	and sit on the floor building legos with my son

i would call my friends and suggest that we take a hike
	that we build up to weekend backpacking trips again

i would camp under the stars in nothing but a bivy sack to protect me

i would not miss my pain

but for now it is pretty constant
	the knot in my shoulder tightening across my neck
		leaving more parts of me to hurt
		leaving me with choices of medication and hot baths
			concoctions and cauldrons to heal me

		i remain unhealed



eeyore_grrl: (2016/17)
2017-02-10 10:43 am

LJ Idol 10 - Week 8: No Comment


		nevertheless, she persisted

she spoke the words of our predecessor 
	and she was told to be silent
		she was told to sit down
			she was told, implicitly, that her words do not matter

but his bid to silence her failed, explicitly
and, damn, her words matter 

she followed his rules
	she shut her mouth
	but only in his presence 
		and only for a short time
	she spoke the words she was told not to
	she stood outside his door and she spoke the words of her foremother
				and herself
	
Liz spoke the words of Coretta

it turns out that we’ve been warned 
					twice
about racism
about the nominee for attorney general
about how those two intersect in a venn diagram that looks like a single circle

and after she was silenced on the senate floor
       after she was told to hush now, little girl
	men spoke 
		reading from the same letter
		reading the same words that were used to silence her
	men spoke and were not warned of reprimand
	men spoke and did not have things “explained” to them

	men spoke after a woman was silenced

and i’m told we don’t need feminism anymore

i have one thing to say to that:

	no comment


eeyore_grrl: (2016/17)
2017-01-22 11:26 pm

LJ Idol 10 - Week 6: Heel Turn

                    and our mothers shall lead us

grey haired with the wisdom of their years
plastic buckets and metal bowls as drums to pound with their voices
(this is not their first rodeo)
	
and we shall be heard
	chanting
    chanting
because we march for our daughters
			and our sons
	    we march for our mothers
			and ourselves

there is a photo going around 
a grey-haired woman with a sign
	“I can’t believe I still have to protest this fucking shit”
and i agree
	i agree so hard my ovaries hurt

this fight has been fought
	we are well on our way to equality
	
but no, no, no clearly that’s false
		 	or maybe it was true and just isn’t anymore

we are still fighting for women’s equality
we are still fighting for autonomy and the right to say no
		or yes
we are still fighting for freedom of choice when it comes to what grows inside us

and i’ve been angry about this for a long time
	blood-boiling mad
	because so many people seem so blind to reality
			otherwise we wouldn’t have to keep fighting these fights
					these same fights that we thought we already won

i’ve been saying that The Handmaid’s Tale is not supposed to be an instruction manual
but i’m going to take a heel turn here and say that NOW it is
	i’m going to reread it as a cautionary tale of complacency 
	i’m going to reread it as a reminder that it’s never too late to fight
	i’m going to reread it as an instruction manual against the fascist patriarchy

from here i hope to be one of the mothers that lead us
	because this is not the way i want to live 
		   this is not the way i want my son to grow into a man
		   this is not okay





eeyore_grrl: (2016/17)
2017-01-15 12:00 pm

LJ Idol 10 - Week 5: Fear is the Heart of Love


			fear is the heart of love

“freedom” drips from our tongues
	runs in the blood of america like an inoculation
		we feel protected
			 impregnable
			
			 safe
 
we stand at the gates
	automatic weapons at the ready 
	automatic words at the ready
	automatic hate 	
			   at the ready

we shout out
	angry,
		laden with fear,
			wanting safety that we can’t put into words

we fly the flag of ancestors
	(orange and crossed)
	claiming “heritage”
	claiming “pride”
	claiming that hatred can’t live in a piece of cloth
	
	oh, but it does

the confederate flag flying
			proud
	from the window of your home tells me that we cannot be friends
		because that flag stands for slavery
						  segregation
						  racism

	that flag stands for hate
					and dominance of a people

we want to ban muslims 
build a wall against our neighbor
	we want to build a bigger arsenal
			and arm ourselves to teeth
we want to live like survivalists in a white, white world

	and we think that this whiteness protects us
					         elevates us
				we think this shroud and hood are becoming
								      are important

the road to muslim registries and even more persecution is paved with racist intent
	because we hate what is different
			we fear that which is unknown
		and here you stand,
				on our shores, in our fields
				climbing our mountains, and walking our orchards
			claiming freedom and greatness are simply ours for the taking

				but you are building with blocks of fear and hatred
					you are lying
					trying to change the meaning of truth
		
	and we are standing firm
		        standing strong
		        standing on the strength of our other ancestors
		
		        standing for truth and justice 
		        standing for equality

we will not be defined by this hatred
	we will be defined by strength and justice

	we will wrap your fear in community
		 wrap your fear in protests
		 wrap your fear in love love love

together we can refuse to live with hatred in our veins
	together we can turn fear into love

	together we stand



eeyore_grrl: (2016/17)
2017-01-06 10:15 am

LJ Idol 10 - Week 4 - “I don't skate to where the puck is. I skate to where the puck will be."


where the calm is going to be


mind awhirl with thought
learning to meditate is rough
body awkward
	sitting still can be so hard
			     so uncomfortable
			     so looong

keep breathing
counting your breaths	
				deep and sure
				in and out
				calm and grounding

keep breathing
believe in calm like gretsky believes in hockey
skating to where the puck will be, not to where it is
	breathe to a place a calm that you want to be
		not to the place of chaos where life leads you

life is motion
	the pump of the heart
	the churning of the stomach
	the blood flowing through your veins
	the thoughts in your head
			vast and quick

in the maelstrom of your day to day 
	be the calm that you want to see
	be the calm 
		fortified by deep breaths
strengthened, at peace
		where you want to be
	racing thoughts slide off the ice
	i     am     calm
		    grounded
		    i     am     where     i     want     to     be








---
This topic was difficult for me write. It took far more thought-energy than I was expecting. Finally, I got something decent.
eeyore_grrl: (carey purple streaks)
2016-12-14 02:11 pm

LJ Idol 10 - Week 3 - Brushback Pitch

(It's a contestant only vote this week, but you can read the other entries at http://therealljidol.livejournal.com/958277.html )
            brushback pitch


we should be better than this
i should be better than this
but tonight i don’t believe


should i put it in baseball terms?
	is that all-american enough?


right now the bases are loaded at the bottom of the 9th
with two strikes
the score is 5-4


i stand, bat up
	i stand, batter up
the throw is wild
	but controlled
	a brushback pitch, i’m told
		so close i can smell the leather
		so close my skin bears the marks of its stitching
	i jump
		trying for bodily safety


THREE STRIKES YOU’RE OUT
	
it’s as easy as that 
	i flinched 	
			game over


eeyore_grrl: (carey purple streaks)
2016-12-04 11:52 am

LJ Idol 10 - Week 2 That One Friend

If you like this and would like to vote for me! (Or read more things people wrote for the topic.) http://therealljidol.livejournal.com/956559.html



          	that one friend




politics have always been a great divide
pitting brother against brother
mother against child
but this year feels so much bigger


i fear that i have become that one friend 
	the one that won’t shut up 
	the one that she feels is overreacting
					overreaching 
						
	and i fear that she is that one friend that is just
							    over


years of building friendship from chance
	random roommates in college
	introductions
built into cathedrals of laughter and tears on the shores of lake erie


and i don’t want that gone
	i miss the laughter that no one else understands
			the words that flow so quickly 
no one in their right mind can keep up
	i miss the understanding that only best friends have


3000 miles 
	but it may as well be light years 
	between us


and we grew with our husbands
	each of us changing slowly 
	each of us changing
			from the young kids that we once were


	leaving us           		distant


right now you are that one friend that i’ve cried about


right now we are that one friendship that i thought would last like diamonds


right now i fear so much
	
	i think that you have forgotten who i am
	and i don’t know you anymore




eeyore_grrl: (carey purple streaks)
2016-11-21 02:24 pm

LJ Idol 10 Topic Week 1: I need the struggle to feel alive


                 life used to be hard
	 	                 (for maria and tina)




life used to be hard


i mean, in a way that breathing was difficult
	   opening my eyes every morning spelled failure
               and placing footstep after footstep was momentous


i mean, in a way that every bridge with a low fence struck me as a blessing
            the trees beckoned to me while i drove
            and razorblades wrote their poetry on my skin


i used to know life only through pain and struggle
	i thought that they were one and the same
	i thought that life was only numbness and tears


life used to be hard
	i knew laughter and smiles
but there were so many more messages of fighting
i saw blood and weapons on the street
drugs and violence in the places we lived


i became the daughter that learned of books and silence
my brother learned about adrenaline and jumped off mountains
we grew from rocky ground evolving into different species


i thought that i needed the struggle to feel alive
	that it was the only way 
	that
	       there was only pain


but now i breathe deeply in california
	kiss my husband every day
	and i can feel my son’s heartbeat when i look at him


i wash the sleepies from my eyes every morning
	glad that i have woken yet again
	that i am alive to see a new day


most mornings i walk my son to school
	foot follows foot for a mile
	we talk about our lives and about what we are learning 


i relish the fact that life itself is no longer a struggle
i mean, i view bridges as paths 
      	 trees are now friends offering oxygen and beauty
	 and razorblades are nothing more than tools and memories


i want you to know that i am not alone
	that you are not alone in this world that feeds you struggle after struggle
	keep hanging on
	
i mean, i mean that i want you to live
	because you are worth the struggle
	and i’m not done learning from your songs

eeyore_grrl: (carey purple streaks)
2016-11-10 03:12 pm

LJ Idol Season 10 - Week 0 - Optional - Introduction

                      believe


my son’s school has a volunteer program for parents
the morning after election 2016
i had to walk into his class as a “trusted adult”
	and tell these six year olds that they will be ok


oh god, i didn’t want to walk into that room


at line-up the parents’ eyes were all red rimmed from crying
			from fear
			from not knowing what is next


we were afraid to read about anti-bullying 
	   scared because we don’t know what to say 
			how to explain these results to our children


but we did it
	five of us read the preselected book about being blue
		and helped the children draw frowns and smiles on paper plates
			masks to show their faces
		i told them that cat videos make me smile
	
we told these children that we will protect them
			that we are here for them
			that we love them


	i hugged these children
		my child and his classmates


i am sad for my country
	grieving common sense
	mourning what was and what could have been


but soon
	i need to stand up
	we need to rise
			   in kindness and love
	i need to believe 
				for my son
				for your daughters
				for our transgendered children that are already dying
				for my immigrant husband
				for our parents on social security
				for our friends that are disabled
				for women  


we need to believe
	and we need to fight
				for our freedoms and for our rights


this is who i am
	and i refuse to be less
	         refuse to accept going backwards


i fight with my words
          			and with my hugs
	i believe in the future
				that we have one
				and i am helping to form it
			
	i have a son
there are versions of the future that terrify me


		i      am      terrified


	but i have to believe in possibility 
			          in love
			          in me and you


	teach with me
				believe with me






See others here: http://therealljidol.livejournal.com/947738.html
and here: http://therealljidol.livejournal.com/947581.html
eeyore_grrl: (carey purple streaks)
2016-11-02 11:33 am

I'm With Her

		i’m with her


i’m angry        because i can’t sleep tonight


i’m crying and pissed off because i was happy
		content lying in bed 
          	ready for sleep


and i started with the memories


every word i’ve heard that made me
					uncomfortable
		started coming back to me
the side jokes of men
	brother and father
	cousin and friend
		grownups around the kitchen table
			in the livingroom 
			on the stairwell
			infiltrating all places of safety


the words that make me unsafe at night
	the ones that showed me
					young
	that breasts are dangerous
					they make me weak
	that blood-flow makes me prey


my husband is away
	our son sleeps soundly upstairs
		i have a cat curled at my hip
and the words of women fly past me
	the truths of rape and pain
	the truths of soft flesh and hard bone
       the deep down poison of our current humanity


and i’m angry 
	because we are in a world that is approving of this
		that continues these stories
						this narrative
		that makes them normal, usual, typical 


this year i’m voting like my life depends on it
			because it does
	our very freedoms are at stake
	our very humanity lies in the balance of this election
		(normally i would think this is hyberbolic
				         		clearly an exaggerated claim
				but not this year
				      not this election
      not this man built of vitriol and darkness)


i vote kindness and inclusion
	i vote for the woman breaking ceilings everywhere she goes
		i vote for my grandmothers and maturity 
			i vote for my son to grow up to be a good
                             i vote for love
                                  i vote 
                                      and i matter


eeyore_grrl: (carey purple streaks)
2016-10-04 02:16 pm
Entry tags:

for amy, on her birthday


            for amy, on her birthday

you have the wisdom of infinite words
	paragraphs and stanzas
	verse and prose
		etched into your smile
		line by line they live on your lips
			in your mind
		making you
			        whole
		making you
			        more than possible

so often your smile lives in sadness
	your face beautiful and hurting
	know that you are heard
	know that you are love
	know that you are

		and that is amazing as can be

	you
	are
	infinite

	you 
	are
eeyore_grrl: (carey purple streaks)
2016-09-24 12:01 pm

BiSexual Awareness week. A poem from way back when for you.

I wrote this in college oh-so-many years ago. I will tell you the secret now: the topic is my bisexuality.




huh. I don't have it written out anywhere. Not doing it right now. Enjoy my reading it instead of you...