Sunday, January 27, 2013

So Much Cooler Online

So, you may remember from previous posts that at one point in time I was writing a book. A book about how much parenting and depression sucks, and how sometimes, that's just ok. I"ve been saving up thoughts and feelings from that book because I felt like talking about stuff I'd already written would mean I was repeating myself. However, at this point I feel like the 2/3 finished manuscript has served it's purpose as a therapy project and probably won't find it's way to completion because reading and re-reading it dredges up too many feels, and the point of writing was to make the feels go away.

So anyway, now I'm free to ramble about things that I've 'previously' rambled about, just nobody's read it, and I'm adding new voice. Today: the stupidity and genius of online dating.

The brief genius of it is that, as a busy person trapped at home, it's a way to meet people. Not necessarily romantically, just in general. Some great friends have been spawned from the online world.

The stupidity of it is, 95% of potential people won't look at you twice if you have a kid (and who can blame them, really), and 4% who don't mind if you do and message you, sometimes incessantly, you have no attraction to. And then the 1% where there is mutual 'like', usually results in the person moving very far away a month later, dating someone who 'came back into their life' a month later, or they live half way around the world and you really have no hope of meeting them.

And you go through the withdrawal of having a reason the check your email, but after that passes, there's a small bit of relief.
"Good, I didn't have to turn my life upside down"
"Good, I can go to bed on time now and not be up late talking."
"Good, I don't have to deal with THAT inevitable heartbreak."
"Good, I don't have to worry about re-scheduling the third Saturday from next week."

Because the reality of my situation is, I"m not just 'seeking' someone to spend time with. I'm also approving a  'dad' for Toby. There are people who I've talked myself into talking to, only to realize, what's the point?
And in a way it's disheartening because I'm sure there's some really interesting people I've missed out on talking to, but in another way, it's good. It's a standards filter for me.
Less than 4 sentences about yourself and I find more than 2 obvious spelling errors? Pass.
The one picture of you on your page is you holding a beer and a cigarette even though you checked off "non-smoker"? Nope.
The words '4 lyfe', 420, booze, partaaaaay, sick, or similar variations of each appear in your interests or description? Hell no.
You start a conversation with me and then proceed to give two word answers with two day spaces between them? Not worth my time.
Your first message is to ask what I'm doing this weekend? Um...Creepy.

So, I'm sorry to those people with names like 2_gud_lookin or lust4u or like2laff, but does that really work on some people???

I feel like the whole thing is futile but, while I'm not actively searching, it sometimes feels like it's my only connection to people outside my facebook bubble. It forces me to deal with people that I would never normally talk to. And sometimes that's good, and sometimes it's intimidating, and sometimes I just want to put my walls up again because the whole thing suddenly scares me.
Because I know what it feels like to 'think you've met someone'. And each of those times there's been a sudden stopping point, sometimes before you even get to talk in person. So learning to not assume the best and brightest in people has become a quick lesson to learn. Which in turn makes it harder to trust anyone, or your own feelings.

I like to think I haven't been too damaged by the last 4 or so years, because I currently feel fine. But like I said in an earlier post, once those dormant little 'on' switches start clicking on in your head, the first reaction is to panic and shut them off again.

So talking to random strangers has been a good test of that and a bit of an eye opener.

My tact at this point? Open with the dullest and most complicated parts about your life, and if they carry on the conversation, you're good to go.

"Hi, I have a 4 year old who sleeps in the same room as me because I live at my parent's place because I'm divorced. I can't go out after 7pm because my son goes to bed at 8, and likewise if I'm out I have to be home by 7:30 to get him to bed. I like Doctor Who, Harry Potter, Glee, and youtube videos. When I say 'like' I mean those things basically make up my life right now. My idea of a fun friday night is sitting at home with a glass of wine and making fun of online dating profiles. I cook weird stuff, if you don't like food, don't talk to me. We have food intolerances that I take very seriously, if you mock that sort of thing, get out. Yes I want to go backpacking in Europe, but I'm not going to, because I have a 4 year old. I read for fun. I write for fun.  My family owns almost all the episodes of Star Trek. In all series. And the Star Wars saga. No I won't watch scary movies with you, not even if you think you're protecting me. No I won't drive to Toronto to see 'this awesome band'. My days mostly consist of me sitting on the floor or the grass or the couch and going along with whatever game my son comes up with. Did I mention I have a kid?"

Monday, January 21, 2013

Recipe for a Winter Picnic

Recipe For a Winter Picnic

Supplies Needed:
One exited pre-schooler
One large floor space
One large blanket or table cloth
One picnic bag or basket
A variety of food

Begin by attempting to decipher what pre-schooler would like to pack for picnic. Make executive decision that spaghetti might not be the best choice. Settle for leftover mashed potatoes with beans, tuna salad sandwiches and fried egg sandwich (for those of us with no egg allergy).
Begin preparing food.
Direct pre-schooler to find ingredients in fridge and pantry.
Retrieve ingredients yourself after pre-schooler chooses to spend time dividing cherry tomatoes between 4 containers.
Instruct pre-schooler to find a container for the sandwiches.
Retrieve containers yourself while pre-schooler searches fridge for garlic stuffed olives. Give fork to pre-schooler to extract olives from bottom of jar.
Ask pre-schooler if the remains of tuna salad should be put in fridge or packed. Verdict: packed. Ask for container. Settle on dividing it between 2 containers instead of 4.
Allow pre-schooler to pack cans of beans and a can opener, even though they weigh a ton and you know you won't eat them.
Ask pre-schooler what beverage should be brought. Accept the lemon they hand you and the request for homemade lemonade.
Juice lemon while pre-schooler packs bags of almonds and boxes of raisins.
Stop juicing lemon and allow pre-schooler to stir after discovery that you were allegedly supposed to let pre-schooler juice the lemon.
Re-pack bag after pre-schooler dropped it on floor trying to carry it over to you.
Remember that you haven't found picnic blanket yet.
Hunt for picnic blanket in giant trunk full of blankets and sheets.
Lay blanket in pre-tidied play room.
Venture back to kitchen to get picnic bag, camera and cellphone (all important things for a picnic).
Spend over an hour eating all the food you packed (silly you, thought it was too much).
Photo document event.

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Forgetting Love

Is it possible to forget what love feels like? All melodramatics aside, is it possible for your brain to rewire itself to be so used to the absence of love that it forgets what the big deal was?

I find lately that listening to songs and watching movies has little emotional effect on me unless it has to do with kids. Even commercials.

I've started noticing, in the last few days even, that songs that I used to love and had meaning for me, just leave me bored now. I hear people talk about their husbands or boyfriends and poke fun and complain, and my initial reaction (though I never say it aloud) is 'then why are you still together?'.
And of course the answer would be "because we're in love", but it takes me a few minutes to try and remember that feeling.
I remember at one time thinking the words "I've never been happier", but I can't remember the feeling associated with those words. I can't remember what it feels like to know there is a solid foundation under your feet and trusting that it will always be there.

And when I say 'Love', I guess I really mean being loved. Because you can have crushes and you can ache from the inside out over the thought of a person, and maybe you know them and maybe they're unattainable like a celebrity, but it's not mutual, and it's not real. In turn you can know that someone likes you, but you don't feel anything back.

You can be loved by family, but that's usually a given.
You can love and be loved by your kids, but that's maternal instinct.
But relationship love - the kind you have to find and build and believe in - there's something about the absence of that that can leave this space in your life that you really don't know what to do with. Especially knowing that at one point you knew what it felt like, even if you can't remember it now.

There's this ongoing urge to fill that void, but at the same time I don't feel like there's room. I don't have time to waste with people I don't want to talk to. I don't have time to explain my story over and over again. I don't have time to juggle someone else in my life.

But maybe I've just forgotten how. Maybe when it's right it won't feel like work.

I found a journal in my room dating from 2007 to 2010 completely filled with love and hate and anguish and rage and turmoil and all kinds of things that I had forgotten. Things that physically hurt to read. Things that I had to stop reading because I didn't want to be reminded. But I kept using the L word and kept stating that I wished I could just turn it off. And now that it's 4 years later (maybe 5 if I'm being honest) and I have managed to 'turn it off' I don't know if I know where the on switch is again. And I'm afraid that when I do find it, it will be too familiar and I'll need to shut it off again.

Maybe I over think things. Maybe being analytical and wanting to plan my life beyond next week is my whole problem. I'm just tired of feeling like I'm missing out on something. Like the inside joke or the latest news or gossip that everyone seems to know and you hear whispers of it, but you don't really get it. You don't get it because your mind has tuned it out, and it feels like the further removed you become, the harder it is to tune back in.

Saturday, January 5, 2013

How to lose 5 Pounds Fast!!!

It's So Easy!!!

#1: Get yourself a big old head cold/flu! Preferably one that includes a fever (though none of that throwing up grossness). Frequent coughing fits, nose blowings and headaches are a must.

#2: Skip those sugary holiday treats!! (or avoid the parties all together since no one will want you there now anyway)

#3: 'Feel the Burn' - The fever burn, that is.

#4: Cardio workout - Simply coughing or rolling over in bed will send your fevered heart into a frenzy. Easiest workout ever, am I right??!!!!

#5: Dine only on thin broth and easily digestible foods like rice and soup noodles. Move it on through!!

#6: Have fun with it!! Create games for yourself like 'How many spoonfulls of soup can I eat before the steam makes my nose drip?' and 'How many breaths can I take before I have another coughing fit?'

#7: Continue to sleep a lot and not eat. Your body will thank you later!!!

Still don't believe me?? Check out these amazing results*!!!!!!!

*Some results may vary. Side effects may include headache, nausea, fatigue, inability to stand, frequent urination, sweating, whacked out menstrual cycle, no desire to be a parent, household kleenex shortage, misery, whining, delirium, burning sensation in nasal cavity, sensitivity to light, dislike for life, strong aversion to the smell of poop, strong desire to sleep in a hot basin of water. 

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

The Sick

For some reason I thought it would be a good idea to write a blog about The Sick, but now that I'm here i"m realizing that very little of my brain is un-mucusified and thus I don't feel as though I have anything intelligent to say and am now rambling in some sort of stream of conciousness no doubt brough on my my ever growning fever (for the second time in two days.)


Photocred to whoever took it...

Also, did you know that Llamas and Lamas are two very different things?? Learned that in the book i'm reading...