living out loud

zombie sick day.

I got hit with a sore throat and cough/head cold on Wednesday, so I stayed home today and basically ate chicken soup and watched The Walking Dead all day long. It’s official, Internet: I am addicted to The Walking Dead. I think because it’s not just about zombies getting their brains smashed in and ripping people’s guts out and eating them alive (though I’m sure that’s a big drawing point for some people out there), but it’s about what it means to be (and stay) a human being. It’s about choosing to survive, when all you’ve ever known and most of who you’ve ever loved have been lost or destroyed. It’s an ironic title, in that it’s not really about the dead; it’s about the living. I like stuff like that.

I am up to Season 3 now, and I really like Carol who knows about staying strong with men who aren’t. But my favorite character is Andrea. I deeply want to BE an Andrea. In the end, I think I’m actually more of a Lori. But oh my god you guys, I really wish to be an Andrea. (I had the same problem with Sex in the City – I WANTED to be a Carrie and maybe a little bit of Samantha, but was always stuck with the knowledge I’m at heart a Charlotte.)

I didn’t like Shane, but I think he was a complicated human being who just wanted love. And (currently) I really want Daryl and Carol to fall in love, and not just because their names rhyme but because Carol is so much stronger than she appears. I remain hopeful Rick will eventually stand outside someone’s door holding up placards with sweet sayings on them while God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen plays softly in the background.

And last: Why don’t the zombies eat each other?? How many extras did they hire anyway, to play all these zombies??? Hollywood magic.

luff-pup-pup This is Luff Pup Pup, my companion on this sick day. My dad’s brother Joey gave him to me when I was 2, and it has been with me through all of literally everything. Oh, the stories this stuffed dog could tell you. All of my stuffed animals from childhood have been tossed out or given away, but not this one. It’s missing eyes, nose, tongue, and tail. Its ears were chewed up by a family dog. It’s in desperate need of washing, after 42 years of sick day hugs, sad tears dripping on its head, being slept on through lonely and sleepless nights. It technically belongs to Miss M now, but I still sleep with him on my sadder nights. He is my Skin Horse from The Velveteen Rabbit. He is Real now. Made Real by love.

Will you be patient with me one more time as I work out the last of my gunk here? This is my place for venting my spleen, and I do it freely, publicly, because I firmly believe in the power of vulnerability. I believe staying vulnerable is actually a power. Eventually, I want to find myself in deep, intimate friendships with people who aren’t afraid to be authentically themselves, and vulnerable. What she said:


I was told that not only has the stalker semi-threatened me again (after asking my concerned friend – NOT A SPY, please, this isn’t high school – not to tell me anything else unless it’s really bad, I was told he brought up my job – crazy mofo…I’m a single mother worried about finances and THAT’S where he went?? Wow), and I was also told that he said I’m not together like I was when he knew me. See, that’s a good example of the emotionally manipulative lies he likes to put out there about me.

I have always been melancholy and in close touch with my darkness; ask my mom, ask Luff Pup Pup. I can remember being 7 and lying in bed in our new house in Oklahoma after leaving Pennsylvania, feeling very very pensive about how different my new room and house felt from the only one I’d ever known my whole 7 years on Earth. I have always been on the darker side, reaching for the light but not afraid to let a little dark in now and then. Oh, I’ve been a mess a long, long time, est 1972, and he knew this; he’s spinning tales. It’s all over my old blog – I was writing of my dark nights of the soul long before I had a married man from Baltimore tracking my every move on social media. In fact, he tried to “bond” with me by proving how messy he was, too. (Oh, he proved it all right.)

I don’t hate him. I am mad and will be for a very very long time about what he did. But I don’t hate him. He sends people here to read my stories, and these people enable him by judging me harshly. I’m trying to understand – especially if they’re women – why in the world they’d support a man who scared a woman so badly she had to call the police, who continues to obsessively read this blog and my Twitter page, and continues to spread mean-spirited viciousness about me. He’s got a mean-streak, and if these women don’t believe he’ll do it to them eventually…I dunno. Maybe it’s like those women who fall in love with men in jail and pay them conjugal visits. I don’t understand it. But then, this is the Internet. I was also sent an article recently about people being afraid of unfriending/unfollowing people on social media because of repercussions. Maybe that’s what the deal is. I guess? Either way, I’m standing my ground. I know what he’s capable of, he’s harmful for me, and I won’t/can’t ever be friends with him again or reconcile, ever.

Love isn’t volatile. If you think about love in terms of intense and volatile, you don’t know what you’re doing. Love is gentle and kind, and it feels freeing – not possessive.

So I apologize for the last two posts (and this one). My family and many of my friends are worried about me and they intensely dislike this person for what he’s done, how bad he scared me, how much he’s damaged and continues to damage my self-esteem because of his inability to be honest and his nasty mean-streak. A friend recently suggested I really need to start ignoring his bad behavior as much as possible, that at this point he’s most likely not going to physically show up on my doorstep and so exposing myself to his mania is just not good for me. And I was talking to another friend on the phone the other day after he’d just caught up on what I’ve written here, and he said something about my stalker becoming my muse. What?! NO!! I do not want that, Internet! My muse is supposed to be someone like Tom Hiddleston or Barry Manilow or Dr. Neil Degrasse Tyson. Gah. Listen, all I can say is: I’ve never had to deal with someone so obsessed and insane before. I’ve always really trusted people and taken them at face value; I’ve always given people chance after chance. I’ve been hurt and burned in the past by men, I’ve had friends up and leave me with no explanation (though he knows exactly why I did it – he’s not being honest). But I didn’t stalk them, I didn’t try to destroy their inner sense of self because they wouldn’t do what I wanted. I cried. I hated them. I got mad. I cried some more. And then I moved on. In fact, as I was typing this entry, I got a call on my mobile from a No Caller ID number, which means the person blocked it. Could’ve been a telemarketer, but my first thought is: is he starting again? You guys! Do you understand why I’m really overly focused on this…this…THING?? He is not safe for me.

I can’t control what a disturbed person far away from me chooses to do. So here’s what I’M going to do. I’m going to focus on other things, especially grieving the ending of my marriage which I didn’t get to do and learning how to be okay on my own. I’m not reading voraciously like I used to, and I’m going to start again. I promised a friend I’d help her write a TV show and then went through all the psychotic crap this Fall/Winter and totally reneged on my promise. I have my own stories to write. I’m very very rusty at writing stories. Totally cool with blog entries, but stories are scarier now for some reason. I’m going to fix it.

Can I tell you all about a really amazing thing that happened the other day, a blessing? My sister in law found Miss M a bedroom set – almost brand new – for $125 and my brother and his friend are going to help me move it here. SO excited, because she needs her own space (and I’d like to occasionally be able to sleep without someone’s foot in my face). Then, the woman who sold us the furniture is also giving M a lot of other stuff for free – I told her I didn’t even know how to say thank you (I feel this same way when I think about how much my mom and stepfather just did for me and M, taking us to Disney World). She said, “Oh, I’ve been a single mom with a young child too, and got through it with God’s help and the support of other people – I’m just paying it forward.”

THAT’S who and how I want to be, forever. Someone who accepts and gives help. I want to be loved and love again, and I can only do that if I learn self-care and how to love myself. I’m going to be okay. I just need to stay away from the zombies, and hang onto my old Skin Horse.

I’m going to do these things this summer. Want to do them with me? I promise I won’t be AS melancholy now since it’s summer and the days are longer. They left off wine, coffee, writing, and poetry so we can do some of that too. Oh, and yoga! Let’s try some yoga this summer. Want to?