Monday, March 24, 2008

Just Forking Around

Sorry about the title – as Craig Ferguson says – “I made myself laugh and that’s half the battle”. I really do enjoy bad puns – they’re stupid and low brow and show a distinct lack of imagination, I like to think of them as my homage to our President.

But I digress …

It’s official – Sunday and Monday have become one long continuous day. It appears I’ll be stuck working both days every weekend for awhile and I need to adjust to that. I’m a bit pissed about this development; Sunday mornings are my favorite part of the week. Now I open my eyes and almost immediately feel my back still aches, my feet hurt and I have to get to the store. I’m going to need to decide what to do about Everyday Kindness Sunday wrap-up. So typical of me, it’s only an official thing for me but I still feel the
need to negotiate with myself about how to re-schedule it, and let me tell ya – I am a bitch negotiator. There are positives to working Saturday and Sunday; it leaves me more time for my real job during the week when clients expect to find me and I’ve always preferred doing errands and stuff in the middle of the day on a weekday – less crowds, less screaming kids, less traffic. So there – I’ll focus on that.

I saw “walking woman” Saturday night – I caught a glimpse of her going into “creepy guy walking dogs” house as I drove by. She was dressed up – a Saturday night date perhaps!? I hope so and I really hope I run into her soon so I can get the full story.

Mia is doing OK – the sneezing has started back up a bit and her eyes seem more sensitive again so we’ll be going back to the vet this week. BUT – she’s eating and last night she had a full hour play session with my son. She actually ran and fetched toys and jumped on higher places and just plain looked so happy. Siren is super pissed about this. How dare anyone have fun without him. I was planning to go to phase 2 of the introductions – Mia in the giant kennel and Siren out and about where he can approach her, discover her so to speak, without hurting her. I’m putting that on hold til the vet visit. So for now they communicate through the screen door – Mia hisses and growls and attempts to punch Siren’s lights out while he stares at her with laser beams of death eyes. Eventually she goes back to sleep and he comes out to punish me.

I am working on the slide show – I’m just a wee bit tired these days.

I also have a bunch of things partially written; a scathing rant about the ‘art of distraction’ regarding the media’s attention to Obama’s minister and his supposed racist sermons, an expose of how workers are treated in large retail establishments, a little ditty about what it’s like to work long hours from home and a winding ramble about blogging and message boards – the virtual water cooler I call it. Due to lack of time or brain cells each of these pieces started to lose focus and I found myself veering off the path into places I wasn’t prepared to go so …

I’m feeling a bit forked up.

There’s a very specific reason I named the blog ‘Forks Off The Moment’ – my therapist told me too. Now that’s not really true but sometimes it feels as if it is. I always loved to write – as a child I composed these elaborate fairy tales that revolved around being anywhere but where I was. In my early teens I kept very poetic, uber serious journals about politics, Viet Nam, rock music, drugs, sex and being anywhere but where I was. One of my proudest academic moments was the reaction to a paper I wrote in High School discussing the symbolism and emotional appeal of the song ‘American Pie’ – good grades always came easy to me but this grade was like winning an Oscar. People got what I wrote, they found it important and interesting and were entertained by it – I was somewhere other than where I was. Typical of what was to become my thirty-something years of self-destructive, self-sabotaging brilliance I ditched going to college to study journalism and got pregnant by an alcoholic loser twice my age. Talk about a huge fork off the moment!

Back to why it’s all the therapist’s fault.

I’ve been to therapy a few times over the years; first with my son after his Dad disappeared and it seemed that anger would consume him, then again when my sister killed herself (ain’t we a cheery lot!?) and it seemed that anger and grief would consume us all and finally (I think) this past fall – right before I started the blog – because I simply decided that being in my 50s was going to be better than the previous 4 decades. That brave decision was immediately followed by panic and depression the likes of which stunned me. The therapist thinks I need to practice living in the moment until I can learn to manage the dark places my mind takes me. Regardless of how many times I have survived something, fixed something, rescued something I always feel, always imagine, that the next time will be the end of me. When my business was struggling I stayed awake all night making plans on how to be homeless; would I go to a shelter? – would I live under a bridge? (I have troll fantasies) – what about Siren!? – how would I care for him under a bridge? – could I manage his carrier in my shopping cart? From zero to sixty! I fork off the moment.

Maybe that’s why I’m having trouble finishing anything real. The Obama piece was taking me into my own personal experiences with racism which leads to intense negative feelings about my son’s in-laws. The piece about part-time retail workers made me so angry about this President (as if I needed one more reason) and his economic follies. The ditty about working from home got me to worrying about this current dry spell and trying to describe message boards put me in a bad mood over people who are rude and judgmental, not to mention ignorant and boring.

I’m so grateful to Raven for Wordzzle and to REH for the PFC challenge. These trips into writing fiction are enjoyable and (I hope/I think) are making me a better writer. Plus they create a perfect opportunity to discover new blogs. Which reminds me, I have to update my bookmarks and my sidebar and …

More later - when the traffic jam in my head eases up.


Jay said...

Holy cow! You crammed so many different things into a short blog post!

I used to spend a lot of time on internet message boards and in chat rooms and kept getting sucked into arguments with some of the stupidest people on Earth. I swear I couldn't resist those trolls.

I've never been to therapy, but probably should. I don't know. Maybe someday.

I start blog posts about many different subjects like sports or politics or whatever but then don't usually post them. Sometimes I just get it all out of my system by writing it and I don't have to post it I guess.

Mahala said...

Okay.. don't hate me.. or think I'm flakey.. unless you already do.. think I'm a flake that is.. but have you ever tried meditation? It helps sort of.. put things.. in your head.. in order.. settles them a bit.. ya know?

On second thought, now I think I'm a total flake.

Um.. *hugs* :o)

Dianne said...

Jay - trolls on message boards and my troll fantasies about living under a bridge!!!!
I swear I never made a connection. How creepy and fascinating is that?

mahala - I do meditate and it does help so you're not a flake! or we're both flakes.

tt said...

there was one part in your post that literally made me suck air.."I need to practice living in the moment until I can learn to manage the dark places my mind takes me". Boy did that hit home. Off and on through out my 5o+ years I've had to do the same thing. Circumstances,moments,happenings in life...whatever it was I literally had to talk myself into doing just that. I knew that I couldn't be the only person to do this but I NEVER told anyone of my struggles...I was afraid they would think me weak or 'lacking' somehow. Silly I know. We do watever it is we need to do to get through the 'forky' moments don't we?
Take a side road and leave the traffic jams :)

Law Student Hot Mama said...

I'm really skeptical about therapy . . . I think they're really good about giving wallet analysis . . . wherein they analyze what's wrong with you based on how much is in your wallet. Sort of like how chiropractors do their "adjustments" of wallets.

But I digress . . . good for you for looking at the positive of working on the weekend!

Raven said...

dianne - I love you. For yourself but also because you must be my younger twin.

"Managing the dark places in my mind" - the stuff of truth and a great poem line.

Managing the dark places in my mind
Is no small task
What basket shall I put this fear into?
Can I mark this file closed?
It seems and endless task
Impossible to complete
But then the sun comes out
I look around and see
Progress if not complete success.

Ok - that was on the spot and could use some work, but... I think you have a poem lurking

Doesn't the Obama pastor thing just make your blood boil? It's such a lot of tsuris over nothing... Ach... I could write a rant myself on the subject. I've been avoiding politics because it makes me too crazy.

I have to disagree with law-student-hot mama about therapy. There are some awful toads out there but there are some wonderful, wise souls who can heal or at least soothe the wounds in your heart.

And I'm talking too much but you said a lot, dianne. You are such a gift with your wit and your passion. We need to make sure our inner demons never meet. There would be hell to pay.

Cherie said...

I realize that it might be too late, but you might consider thinking up a new name for "creepy guy walking dogs." You know, something a little less ... creepy. lol Of course, that runs the risk of turning into things like Craig's rambling explanations about "Davis". LOL But I am glad that they're "progressing".

And I'm openly saying that I'm for Obama. Though I'm against almost all of his stated policies, I think that he has the prospect of changing the political discourse. But I'm totally over the preacher thing. That's why I can't listen to the talking heads. They always have to be talking even if it's nonsense.

I really didn't mean to say much of anything. I just wanted to run in and extend you a quick hug before I started working on my "project". ;)


SnoopMurph said...

Hi Dianne,

Meditation can work some wonders, so can writing, therapy and venting. I do all of them as regularly as I can and sometimes wrestling with difficulty and demons can be so draining. My sister-in-law, a breast cancer survivor and only 36 yrs. old, sent me this Rumi poem, back when C was diagnosed and when she was also working through stuff. We talked about welcoming the unwanted and working on this and not easy! But I keep it on my desk and it helps me tremendously.

This Being Human is a Guest House

This being human is a guest
house. Every morning
a new arrival.

A joy, a depression, a meanness,
some momentary awareness comes
as an unexpected visitor.

Welcome and attend them all!
Even if they’re a crowd of sorrows,
who violently sweep your house
empty of its furniture, still,
treat each guest honorably.
He may be clearing you out
For some new delight.

The dark thought, the shame, the malice,
meet them at the door laughing,
and invite them in.

Be grateful for whoever comes,
because each has been sent
as a guide from beyond.

Welcome difficulty.
Learn the alchemy True Human
Beings know:
the moment you accept what troubles
you’ve been given, the door opens.

Welcome difficulty as a familiar
comrade. Joke with torment
brought by the Friend.

Sorrows are the rags of old clothes
and jackets that serve to cover,
and then are taken off.

That undressing,
and the beautiful
naked body
is the sweetness
that comes
after grief.

From THE ILLUMINATED RUMI, Translations & Commentary by Coleman Barks, Illuminations by Michael Green, 1997

I love you too and I agree that all of the excellent writing challenges coming about have helped each of us WRITE (sometimes that is enough of a challenge, let alone writing something decent!) and I do think you have a gift, especially a very honest one. You have a faithful and unjudging reader in me.

Anonymous said...

Friday is my favorite day of the week ! :)

Kim said...

I wondered about your blog title!

I think going into therapy is a gift everyone should give him/herself! I have had when my son was diagnosed with ADHD and one when my husband and I were having a very rough patch in our marriage. I was not fond of the first but the second one was amazing...I think that's important to realize, too...they're not all a good fit.

I'm glad you decided to make your 50's the best, and that you decided to write a blog, and that I "met" you through Raven...have a great day!

Dianne said...

tt - the forky moments indeed. I'm glad you saw yourself in there, I always feel better when I see me in someone else's writing, makes me feel less alone. An old and dear friend always remarks that I have the most eclectic group of friends and I manage to get along with them all - I think it's because I see a piece of me in just about everyone/anyone and I'm no longer hesitant to share my truths.

law student - I think every profession has "wallet" practioners. The medical dr. who breezes through a physical, the contractor who hurries and does sub-standard work ....
my therapist lowered her rate for me since $$$ is one of the reasons I feel so trapped these days. good and bad in all ... but I do value your opinion even if we disagree

Dianne said...

raven - after we write a poem together I think we should write a horror movie. dark demons separated physically who tear up the planet looking for each other! I want Charlize Theron to play me LOL

cherie - I started to write a "Davis" type introduction for "creepy guy" and it just rambled and rambled LOL, some things are better on TV. I'm hoping "walking woman" gives me a new name for him. And bravo on Obama - it has always been one of my fave things about you - you have an incredible ability to see all sides of things and to be reasonable and to think of the bigger picture - I hope you know how much I respect that.

Dianne said...

snoopmurph - I'm printing that poem too! thanks. and thanks for always being such a good friend. Siren sends hugs to Connor - and he had his claws IN when he sent them :)

joel - when I was younger and just had 1 job Friday was my favorite day as well, especially Friday night which usually lasted well into Saturday ;)

kim - it's important to change therapists if you don't click - you're right about that. I'm very lucky with this one, she "gets" me. I'm glad to know you too Kim, you're like a breath of fresh air!

bobbie said...

There seem to be a whole lot of people out there who love you, Dianne. Me too.
Writing is my therapy. Like Jay, I do it all the time and never post it. Just writing it down is what I need.
That traffic jam in your head sounds familiar to me too. Write it down. Get it out. And hang in there.

Leighann said...

when the traffic jam in my head eases up.

I have one of those in my head everynight at bedtime.

They never ease up. If you figure out the key, let me know would ya?

I've tried the therapy thing. For depression and anger issues. All it did was piss me off and make me feel worse. ;)

I certainly hope that you can find some serenity.

CG said...

I can't say often enough how glad i am that I stumbled across your blog. We are both trying to live in the moment. I understand about your homeless to cope! I went to see the disaster movie "The day after tomorrow" where a new ice age arrives...I swear I spent the whole movie working out survival strageies for my family instead of enjoying the film!

Odat said...

Wow..I can relate to some of those "fork offs". I just keep going forward....

Diane Mandy said...

I relate! I ended up in therapy once because I was so so angry and couldn't shake it. It was the first time I had every had this unshakable negative emotion because I felt too uncomfortable to deal with it, but events in my life had forced me to finally feel. It was a very scary time and I learned, whether it be fear, sorrow, or anger, to live in the moment. I also took up blogging, which has provided a huge relief to me.

Shelly said...

Oh man...traffic jam is such a perfect way to describe it, I can't wait to share that with my sissy. I loved how you touched on all kinds of stuff with that post. I'm happy for Mia and kinda sad for Siren...ohhh Siren. Oh...and the homeless thing...I've always had the same thing but in my head it was "when we're reeeallly poor", for some reason I have to hang on to stuff for when we're "reeeally poor". go figure.

Akelamalu said...

I used to get really dark times but Reiki changed all that. :)

You don't need anything/one to make you into a better writer your writing is fantastic m'dear. I'm so glad I found your blog :)

Dianne said...

bobbie - thanks, I always do hang in there :)

leighann - usually when therapy pisses me off it's cause it's working ;)

cg - it seems so many of us relate, and that makes me feel better about posting. I tend not to post when I'm not sure what's going on, I always want to have an answer, or at least understand the question.

odat - exactly!

diane mandy - the living in the moment takes some practice but I think I'm getting better at it. :)

shelly - it's so funny you mention feeling bad for Siren, my son said the same thing just this weekend and has made an effort to spend more time with Siren. He's never really comfy with Siren since it's so hard to predict his behavior and to control him but we're all going out of our way to make sure he knows he's still loved.

akelamalu - thanks so much :)

tt said...

BTW---- I've got something for you over at my place!! ;)

Bob-kat said...

Now I understand the name of the blog! It sounds like you had a lot going on in your world adn much more going on in your mind. I cna relate to that! My mind never stops whirling adn I am guilty of the same thing, always contingency planning things that might not happen!

The weekend working sounds sucky but the positive side is the quieter times you get to do chores in the week. I used to enjoy that aspect of weekend working too. Sometimes it's necessary to focus on the little positives :)

Jo said...

I love the honesty of your posts & your writing, so much of you comes through in it & I think you're remarkable. Occasionally I come across a person that just shines...shines through their suffering, their mixed bag of talents & flaws, their regrets, their questioning...I don't know all of that about you, but you're a shiner--it's the spark that lights up all the rest & makes it okay. Better than okay.

Fighting darkness is such a nasty, exhausting business...but at least for me, whenever I'm grooving on the other side of it, I realize what gifts I stole & dragged from's a unique education b/c it's one gained through experiences we never would have chosen for ourselves. Ever. They're that overwhelming.

To say that writing is therapy for me is an understatement. It's how I sort out the inferno in my head...I think I'd combust if I didn't have this particular outlet. Thinking out loud, but with an anchor...something I don't always have in the mental tug-of-war over which thoughts claim me.

Periodically I emerge from overthinking & announce, I'm living in the now. I think it's just as necessary, and joyful...letting go to hold on.

Chin up, Dianne. I'm so glad to know you.

Dianne said...

bob-kat - one of the things I love about your blog is the honesty about over-working, over-thinking, and trying to play - that plus the most amazing nature photos :)
it delights me that so many comments here shared a bit of themselves, makes the writing all the more worthwhile.

jo - oh the chin is definitely up :) I wasn't feeling "bad" so much as scattered.
"I realize what gifts I stole & dragged from hell..."
"the mental tug-of-war over which thoughts claim me."
"letting go to hold on."
I would have just quoted your entire comment but that seemed silly! Those thoughts are priceless and one of the many reasons I thing you're a gift, a poet, an extraordinary person.
thanks jo.

Minnesotablue said...

Writing is a wonderful therapy, published or not.
My youngest daughters life was literally saved by a therapist. She suffers from an eating disorder and almost died. She was in her early teens when diagnosed and she is now forty years old. I agree that there are some therapists that are not the greatest, but the great ones can save your life. You are wonderful Diane and it has been my privilage to know you through these blogs Love you!

Dianne said...

minnesotablue - I am glad your daughter was helped. And thank you for always saying the kindest, most thoughtful things to me/about me - I value that so much.

Paul said...

in there

Tink said...

Ugh. Blogger ate my comment. Bad Blogger, bad!

I feel you girl. Getting past the memories that plague is one of the most difficult things to do. They come and go as if our heads were filled with holes. Just when you think you've found a space to yourself, to live the current moment in, they trapse in like you're throwing a party.

Dianne said...

Awww - thanks paul :)

tink - swiss cheese of the mind! I love your description. thanks.

Lisa said...

I can definitely relate to what goes through your mind. I've been learning to deal with things a little better for quite some time now, and although I have a bit of a setback, I'm hoping I come out of it mentally well, without needing a therapist... for me, I feel like seeing a therapist allows me to dwell in negativity instead of moving on and getting over myself. ??? who knows really...

meditation, like mahala suggested is a great idea. I've tried it and it does help. I have to get back into it, but I'm having concentration issues at the moment.

you're pretty cool. i hope you know that much.

Diane J Standiford said...

I started blogging at 50 also, and my name is Diane, we are practically SISTERS! You have a very good blog.

Dianne said...

lisa - you're very cool, and I hope you know that. thanks for such an insightful comment. my therapist is actually quite practical and positive. we work on moving forward, stopping in the past only to understand it if something comes up, then moving on.

diane j - thank you very much Sister Blogger :)