Life & Times

an event worth noting


That’s one way to start a year.

I didn’t have hope for 2021. I told myself I’d play it by ear, a day at a time. The way I do everything else. I know, I know. Stoicism is boring and you’re sick of hearing me not have expectations for anything, but it is how I managed to survive 2020 in one piece, so I’m sticking with it.

Even with my ambivalence for 2021, I was unprepared to witness an armed insurrection at the United States Capitol.

My emotions ranged from shock to fear to a strange combination of relief and raving frustration watching the events unfold. How else does one react to watching an “army” of goobers throw a revolution-themed rave a block away from what we’re told is the greatest military force on the planet? It could have been worse. It should have been worse?

Instead, it was equal parts dangerous, idiotic, and utterly embarrassing. I do not love America. “Loving” a nation is a strange concept for me, but I live here thus am invested in America’s welfare while not caring much for the myths it tells about itself.

Even with my lack of fucks for America’s image on the world stage, I found myself humiliated.

It isn’t surprising.

One of my quarantine hobbies since March has been the rabid consumption of American history podcasts. You know. To know where you are you must know where you’ve been or some such. While the federal Capitol hasn’t been breached since the War of 1812, state capitols were certainly breached post-Civil War to overturn duly-elected Black and Black-sympathizing officials. If the summer of 2020 felt like a re-do of 1968, early 2021 looks very 1870ish.

Who knows what we’ll see before (or after) the new government is installed on January 20th?

Why am I writing this? Well. Because the humbling (slow destruction?) of an empire is an event worth noting.

Life & Times

well, aren’t you effing rude?

It came to me in the middle of the night, staring at my ceiling.

You’ve never liked yourself.

Whoa. That couldn’t be true.

I conceded my childhood and teens. I was good at one thing: school. I pushed myself to excel because the acclaim I received being a good student was the bright spot in an otherwise difficult childhood. As I entered my teens, I added “self-righteous good girl” to the mix. I didn’t like myself anymore, being “not like the other girls,” but it turned down the volume on the impossible-to-please voice in my head long enough for me to do okay in high school, settling into a safe spot as the “quiet” one among my group of friends who were cooler, tougher, and more worldly than I was.

So yeah. Didn’t like myself much then.

But what about college? There were those first two and a half years of on-and-off depressive spells while I worked through introducing my “good girl” to adult vices: sex, drinking, parties. Did I like myself then? Eh. Less often than not. But surely, after a rock bottom first semester of my junior year when I went home for holiday break and came back brand new? When I created that sassy, head-held-high persona and faked it until I felt it in my bones and charmed everyone along the way?

Surely, then.

Did you like yourself or did you create a person you could like because you weren’t enough?

Well, fuck.

It went on like that for a while; me scanning my memory for moments where I held myself in high regard and realizing that I was trying to feed that evil, needling voice that insisted I wasn’t enough. As a kid, I fed it with academic excellence. As a teen, I fed it with a wholesome virgin routine. And as a young woman, I fed it with big attitude and ambition. Each time, it ate and ate and ate until it swallowed me whole, burped out the waste, yawned and fixed its bored expression on me like “Is that all?”

Some part of me figured this out in my late twenties when I realized I wasn’t actually ambitious. And another part of me clicked last year when I declared myself “perfectly average.” On some level, it hit me that insatiable hunger for bigger, better, more didn’t serve me; it exhausted me. So I stopped wanting altogether. To want was to plunge myself into a deep sea of “what you don’t have,” that space between one’s desires and one’s reality that’s supposed to inspire action but instead pulls me into a malaise of self-loathing.

You’ve never liked yourself.

It was true when I woke up the following morning. True when I made my coffee and ate my breakfast. True as I sat on the couch watching YouTube videos.

But what the fuck was I supposed to do with that? Try to rewire my brain? I’d spent enough time and energy on self-help to know I was over that phase. Trying to steer my mind off its desired course only led to vicious double-downs.

What if you just accepted it and got on with life?

That thought felt as true as the one that had inspired it.

But wait. Was I supposed to resign myself to some Charlie Brown/Eyeore style of existence where I hated myself and nothing ever changed because what was the point because I’d always hate myself? Not even my pragmatic, weary 37-year-old mind could wrap itself around that idea. A low-key, everyday existence was one thing. Living under the foot of some evil bitch in my brain was something else entirely.

No; that wasn’t it.

Because maybe it wasn’t that I didn’t like myself as much as I’d given that voice in my head too much power. I’d done its bidding. I’d argued with it. I’d tried to ignore it. What if I tried living with it?

If I was truly a creative writer, I’d make up a scenario that described how living with it works. But truthfully, I can’t think of one. In the last couple of weeks since my revelation, every time that annoying little bitch in my head pops up, I just say “Okay. But you don’t like me, so…”

And she does the Alonzo Mourning nod before slinking off to do whatever she does when she’s not terrorizing me.

The fact that I can’t recall a word she’s said in the weeks since tells me this nifty trick just might work.

For now, at least.

Astrology, Life & Times

my third house life

So remember my triumphant return to blogging? Because the world was in shambles and I thought we’d need mediums like these — emphasizing the personal, the mundane — to act as our bridge over troubled waters? (I did not say “bridge over troubled waters” at the time, but it sounds good here, so I’m going with it).

Well. That hasn’t quite worked out.

It’s hard to write about yourself when you’re lost. When you’re sick of yourself. When you have no idea who the hell you are anymore and you’re known for bold declarations of just that. How do you write through that without whining? Without navel-gazing in the midst of social, political, and cultural upheaval?

So, I didn’t write.

The problem is, I write to know who I am.

That’s not some shit I made up on the fly, either. If you look at my natal chart, the ruler of my First House (the house of the Self a.k.a. the “you” in your chart and don’t let anyone tell you differently) is in my Third House (communication). Me and the mediums with which I express myself go hand in hand. Yet, I hesitate to go through the motions on my blog, because?

Pride. Shame.

I don’t want you to see me unsure or questioning. Then, you might say “That’s what you get for not being normal. For thinking you could do life ‘differently’ and be fulfilled.”

I am afraid of what you’ll think of me. And now that I’ve looked that particular boogeyman in the face, I can tell it “Fuck you.”

Another fact about the Third House of the natal chart: it is a busy house. Planets placed in the 3rd don’t get to sit still. They are tasked with problem-solving. With the ruler of my house of self in the third, “Who am I?” might be an open question for the rest of my life.

That sounds like a pain in the ass. I suppose I should write about it.

Let me find out this shit really works.