It took me until Tuesday to choose to crawl out of a difficult downward spiral. And it doesn't always feel like a choice but it is. Most of my self care choices are around preventing or relieving chronic depression, a condition I inherited from a lineage full of folks who chose to self medicate with alcohol. This self medication also contributed to traumatic events and violence I experienced as a child that I continue to heal from today.
In people pleaser recovery we learn that what we must ultimately do is the work of knowing what is in our heart, what makes us sing, and what we want. I learned from Jeffrey Marsh that we do not need to be “nice” (doing what other people think we “should” or saying what they want to hear), but we can be kind. We can kindly say, “Hey, this isn’t right for me right now.” And we can be kind to ourselves and let go of the need for other’s approval.
Decision making is really hard for me sometimes. My perfectionism flares hard when I'm up against a deadline. Suddenly I'm afraid of everything being wrong and it makes even minor decisions seem like they will destroy everything good that exists in the world if I choose incorrectly.
This is not unlike college when every decision about every paragraph in my 20 page papers seemed unsurmountable until I was hard pressed by procrastination. Only now do I understand this to be fear-based procrastination and that I do it as a coping mechanism.
It made me so bummed out when I saw signs for the Women's March last year that focused on his small hands instead of the thousands of substantive issues that are available for critique. I thought about the children at the march who would see that and how it might make them think that targeting someone's body is okay and that might inflame their own insecurities about the way their bodies aren't "normal." What a toxic word and idea in a world so full of diverse bodies and totally valid ways to inhabit those bodies.
If you're interested in learning more about how to lovingly inhabit the body you're in and have some fun--check out my Fat Kid Dance Party Aerobics (For All Sizes to Heal from Body Oppression) videos!
Having a viral video is kind of like regular life except also like it’s your birthday. On Facebook your friends are writing really nice things about you when sharing your cool video. You get tons of email. And your girlfriend buys you something cute for each milestone. We had lattes for our one millionth view and I got flowers when it hit two million. Birthday treatment. (I always worked to femmifest a loving and supportive partner and I totally have one now. Visioning works!)
It’s very lonely being in the closet. When you don’t feel like you can be your authentic self, it’s hard to live freely because you’re always keeping a secret. If you’re out there and you are in the closet now, I’m here to tell you that you’re not alone and you’re okay. When it’s time for you to come out, it will suddenly feel more uncomfortable to be in the closet than the risks you take to come out. But, like Ellen says, the risks to be your true self are totally worth it.
We’ve been in our house for two and a half weeks and have so many more boxes than I thought we still would. In my visions, we were mostly unpacked by now. In April of last year I had a meltdown about how our house wasn’t yet together and somehow I had that same meltdown on Monday of this past week, a full three months early. The last house we had complex attic clean outs and renovations that slowed things down. This time it was major surgery for Dara.
Beloved readers, here’s what’s been going on in my life lately. Your girl is getting great press. I started my new aerobics class Fat Kid Dance Party. We're finally moving! I'm throwing myself into spiritual healing for my grief. Bevin's Tea is still brewing.