The Oodie

I have succumbed to advertising, and a cold Melbourne winter, and have purchased an Oodie. For those who don’t know, the Oodie is a massively oversized windcheater or sweater, with two layers. I have a pale grey one with quokkas on it. The ad showed the colours to be greenish, but the colour palette is grey, a sort of pale browny-yellow, and blue. Some of the quokkas are wearing blue onesies.

It arrived this morning and I’ve had it on and off several times. I get cold, put it on, get warm, then get hot, then come close to having a hot flush, and strip the oodie off again. Rinse and repeat.

Yes, it’s very warm, it’s very comfy, and beautifully soft. The inner lining is a fluffy fleece, and time will tell how it stands up to washing. Will it mat, like so of these sorts of fibres do?

I’m sitting in the lounge room, looking out over my street, and am sitting cross-legged on the couch. All of me is tucked up into the oodie. If it didn’t have a one-head neck opening, I’d suggest PizzaBoy and TwentiesPerson try getting into it with me, just to see if we all fit. I’m sure there’s enough room for all of us. The height differences might mean I end up getting hung by my own oodie neck opening, though. PB is 6’2″, TP is 6′, and I’m 5’2″.

I’m tempted to take the oodie to yoga. The perfect thing to wrap up in before class, then fling it off to reveal a tshirt underneath. But, it’s Rather Large, and would take up more of the yoga studio than would be good, seeing as we all have our little pods to stay within. If I’m still home yoga-ing online, it’ll work quite well.

Why write about my oodie? Why not? Not every post has to be Important Mental Health Updates, poetry, or some political observation. I have no advice on keeping slim – so would all the people who follow me for health tips, in the hope that I’ll follow them back (you have no idea how many people started following me after my blog entry FOLLOW ME FOR MORE HEALTH TIPS – NOT) please check yourselves.

Nor is this an ad for Oodies. I have one. I don’t need another one. I am capable of washing this one, drying it, and wearing it again. I am a big girl who even sews buttons back on jackets, and uses handkerchiefs instead of tissues.

This is me saying that on a wet, cold Saturday morning, I am snug in my Oodie, watching Melbourne open up again after lockdown 4. Our bubble is extended to a 25km radius. If I was inclined I could drive to Qi gifts and bookshop, and then walk down Glenhuntly Rd to The Avenue bookshop. I’m not inclined. It will be enough to take a walk this afternoon and maybe get my eyebrows threaded, and a pedicure. That’s just how fancy I am. (I can only imagine how many beauty bloggers will now follow me in the hope that we have loads in common. Trust me, we don’t.)

Who knows, I may even finish the mixed media art piece I started the other day. The paint is on the page, and flicks of black paint over that. Now it’s sitting there, dry, awaiting whatever I wish to do with it.

Well, I’m off to enjoy my warmth. Ciao, bellas and bellos.

Before yoga 31/5/21

When I’m not in lockdown, I wake, and muck about until 9.30am, then make an effort to shower, get dressed, and drive to 10.30am yoga with YogiBore. When I am in lockdown, like this week, I’m up, showered, dressed, washing on, and fitting in a blog post by 9.50am.

I did clap my little hands at the thought of not having to drive everywhere for classes. I did clap my hands at the thought of yoga, tap dance, belly dance, and Active Seniors in my own living room. Of course, not clapping my hands at the thought of plague.

The sun is streaming through my living room windows, Puppy is sitting on the pouffe, panting slightly in the warmth, and looking outside, hoping to spot a dog and bark himself stupid. Penny the Cranky black cat has just come in for shouting, hissing, and brushing. Angel the Ginger is no doubt draped over a heating vent. Last I saw of Tilly TinyPony(long haired black and white cat) she was padding around the back yard. And Chloe Ballerina kitty(tabby cat) is out doing whatever Chloe does.

PizzaBoy is upstairs, updating TwentiesPerson’s calendar to reflect that there are no Recreation and Special Interest Groups happening this week through our service provider, Interchange Outer East. TwentiesPerson is, by the sound of things, in the kitchen, doing whatever they’re doing. If they’re in the pantry, I often call out: “Mousie mousie, I hear a mousie.” It’s still amusing to TP after all these years, and they stick their head through the doorway to the living room and grin. Then wave whatever they’ve fished out to eat. Mostly junk food.

And me? I’m on the green couch, enjoying the sun, watching incense smoke drift lazily towards one of the windows that I’ve opened a crack. I’ve had dodgy sleep patterns this past week, which may be related to lockdown, and might be Not Enough Exercise, Satya. Despite that, this morning I feel okay. A bit anxious that I’ve decided to attempt rewriting an older story of mine. But, I have all afternoon to play with that. Right now, blog and a bit of email deleting. Either answer, read, pay, or delete.

Bit of a nothing blog post, you say? Well, some of them are like that. People who show up for the poetry are stunned at the witchcraft, and mental health stuff. The people keen on mental health stuff say WTF at other things. But, as Marge Piercy once wrote: “To me, it is all one vision.” It’s all me, and if this morning’s blog post is rambling, reflective, a bit of this, and a bit of that, it will still be comforting to see, in the midst of life, I have quiet, content moments where my house is at peace.

Sciencing The Shit Out Of It

This was the morning where PizzaBoy said he was going to ‘science the shit’ out of my posting from my computer problem. As I was spelling out my password to this site, it occurred to me that I hadn’t tried accessing my blog from any browser but Microsoft Edge. That perhaps I should try it from Firefox.

And lo, PizzaBoy showed me a posting page and said: “Look.”

I looked. And there was a blank page, ready for me to begin. and lo, he used Firefox. So, I’m back, people. Did you miss me? What’s been happening?

Yesterday I went to a craft expo in Pakenham. I know, I know. One of my few days off from driving to Narre Warren for TMS, and I decide to drive an extra 22km to Pakenham to check out craft stuff, and meet up with UnicornGirl, who was art therapising down that way.

The expo was washi tape, journals, planners, stickers, Dylusions sprays, ink pads, alcohol inks, paper, ribbon, fancy shit that I knew not wot. I’m a baby crafter, sporadic in an art practice at best. Nevertheless, I bought washi tape until my bag runneth over. What do I need all that washi tape for? Well, I put bits on letters I write. I’ve done exactly one art page that started with a base of washi (which is going to be the name of my rock band when I start one). And I fondle it.

I honestly thought I’d broken the having for the sake of having habit. Nope. It’s just changed focus. Ah well, work in progress and all that. This week for sure, I will do at least one art page using washi tape, and some of the fuck tonne of stamps I’ve acquired.

An interesting predilection of mine is to go for minimalism when I create art. Yet, I desire big, luscious, multi-layered stuff. So, here’s to me being too much this week.

Fibro, thyroid, and mind things, oh my

I went to an extra tap dance class this morning. I’ve been tired most of the week – thyroid issues? The old fibromyalgia clearing its throat? TMS therapy backwash? The drive to and from Narre Warren (35 mins each way on freeways)? Change of season? Entering the darker part of the year? I started reading a book about Hecate’s poison path? Who knows.

Now, I have only just started tap class about 10 weeks ago. I’ve had 9 lessons in the beginners/seniors/low impact class. Today was the regular class, so faster, more complex, all round harder. Too fast for me.

I am very hard on myself. If I talked to others the way my brain talked to me (“Gods, look at you not keeping up. Why can’t you just…?”), I’d have no friends, and someone would have sat me down a long time ago and said: “Who made you a fucking dictator?”

But, it’s more than just ‘why can’t I do this?’ I remember when I picked up choreography in belly dance class like it was nothing. I never remembered it well, but I followed along like I was a hot knife cutting through butter. I didn’t have inflammatory issues. I didn’t have an underactive thyroid. I hadn’t gone through menopause.

I feel like a big, slow, fat lump. Even those damned hippos in FANTASIA could keep up with their own ballet. My mind doesn’t process as fast as it used it. My body just doesn’t move as fast as it used to. I have a shoulder injury. I am still moving through depressive and anxious fog.

I honestly feel like I’ve let myself lie on couches, reading, and let my body deteriorate. I don’t keep up in any but the Active Seniors class at my gym.

Why can’t I be kind to myself and let this slowing and softening happening?

Or, can I come back from where I am, or think I am, and do better, slowly?

YogiBore knows my body as well as anyone. She’s watched my body for 11 years as my yoga teacher. She says I need more yoga, but she also knows that my soul needs dance. I know SwiftGirl, the owner of my gym, would say I need more Active Seniors classes. UnicornGirl, my current belly dance teacher, is eager to have me back in class, but honestly, Fat Chance Belly Dance Style, and Global Caravan style aren’t doing it for me. I’m all about the costuming and make up, and jewellery, and playing with all that. I want to discover my ‘belly dance drag’ make up style. But, there’s a hell of a lot of arms, and not a whole lot of actual belly dance. Guess I’m a classical and modern Egyptian dancer at heart. It’s what I first learned, and what I’m happy doing. I don’t want to do arm waving and not much else, no matter how cool the costume.

Look, I know this is all very much white woman, first world, middle class, non-working problems.

I JUST WANT MY BODY TO DO WHAT I WANT IT TO DO, WHEN I WANT IT TO DO IT! Is that too much to ask at age 57? Is it?

The Daily Blog: The Petrol Head’s God

I went on the Pathways For Carers afternoon walk along Mullum Mullum Creek. Site of the day: a young guy riding up and down a grassy hill on a dirt bike (looked very much like a Big W Hyper Bike, now that I’ve done a quick google). Up and down, up and down, making a racket. The bike was a bright neon green. He stopped at the top of the hill, and parked the bike against some dark green bushes. At first it looked like he was checking his texts on his phone, and I thought: ‘Yep, gotta check those texts. Don’t you be out of communication for a moment, matey.’

I turned to the woman I was walking with and said: “He’ll be taking pics of it next.”

Sure enough, he squatted down, and started taking phone pics of his precious dirt bike, sort of crow walking around to get all the angles.

Years ago, I watched 60 Minutes episode on the marketing of footballer Warwick Capper. He was dressed in tight footy shorts and was bare chested, and the photographer was urging him: “Give us that smouldering look.”

I thought that the young guy was about to say that to his bike.

I have no doubt that Facebook, Instagram and wherever else the cool young people post their pics will have 20 shots of his green dirt bike on it tonight.

Oh to be young, and that in love with a new purchase.

The Daily Blog: It’s Your Thing – The Isley Brothers

This afternoon has been letter writing time. I have a number of penpals. Today, I thought I should answer a couple. I’ve set up my little low table in my bedroom, in front of the french windows. And I put some 1960’s music on Spotify.

During IT’S YOUR THING by the Isley Brothers, halfway through my second letter, I noticed a male indian myna bird sitting on the fence, warbling to the music. When the Isley’s took a breath, the myna stopped, and swallowed. Then, off they’d go together again, for the whole of the song. Once the song finished, the myna flew away. A fat pigeon that was settled and fluffed next to the myna started up, flattening its feathers, and looking all alert and somewhat alarmed. Look, I cant blame you, pigeon. Bob Dylan came on. The pigeon flew away. Dylan might be a masterful song writer, but as a vocalist….

Trans Cranial Magnetic Stimulation: pre-treatment fears

Earlier in the week, my husband, PizzaBoy, made all thirty of my initial TMS appointments, and today I entered them into my phone calendar, to be transferred to my ‘put up a monthly calendar in the toilet so I’ll see it 7 times a day’ calendar/planner. Now it’s real. I start next Tuesday(5 days away). All my appointments are in the afternoons. I have hopes that I’ll still be able to do my Monday morning yoga, Tuesday morning tap dance, and Thursday morning Active Seniors. I’m told that there can be fatigue and some headaches to begin with.

I have a bunch of fears, even though I had a very mild experience of the treatment when they mapped my brain last week, and found the optimum spots, and juice levels to use on me. I’m having bi-lateral treatment, which the psychiatrist hopes will treat not only my depression, but my anxiety as well.

In the past, I have edged along the border of mania. Not full blown manic episodes, but there have been times in my life when I’ve felt great. Great with a capital G. I remember one afternoon, striding through a shopping centre, and thinking ‘it’s 3pm and I still have loads of energy, and I feel like I’ve not only accomplished everything on my list, but can do even more’. I felt strong, in control, calm, somewhat Super Woman. I loved the feeling. I wanted more of it. Why couldn’t my strides be slightly longer than normal? Why couldn’t I confidently heel-strike, and move like water through crowds of people? It was like I set my gaze on a distant point and flew there.

I don’t remember the not sleeping part of it. But that feeling of ‘wow, I feel great, in control, like water, like an arrow, I can do all the things’ is usually riding on the back of less sleep, and an inability to switch off.

I had one of those times when a psychiatrist I was seeing for a meds review remarked that I was skirting along the edge of mania. I was also taking…oh, I forget which supplement, at the time, which was a major factor in this feeling.

“Oh, I thought I was just feeling great,” I said. Then reflected at how I’d talked at her like I was speedy, eyes dancing and glittering, excited by everything, rigid and upright in my chair.

Oh.

Oooooh……

Those times in my life when I’ve felt like that, then it all fell apart and I felt exhausted? I have one niece with bi-polar(heavily medicated), and my other two nieces are definitely on the depression scale, and one is paranoid as well but refuses any diagnosis or help. That exhausted feeling was the come down after the near-manic episode.

Apparently, TMS might push me more towards mania if I’m not careful, which is why I’ll be under the supervision of professionals, and will keep an eye on myself for those feelings of Super Woman-dom. I skirted there yesterday. By the time I got home from a drive to the airport, and pottering on Brunswick Street, I noticed I was hyped up enough to keep searching on the internet for items of clothing I saw yesterday and thought I wanted.

Today, I’m rather tired, washed out.

My ultimate aim with TMS is to nix the depression and come off my meds permanently. That’s the dream. What’s not the dream is the possibility of mania, because that’s not a way to live either.

PB and I are going away this weekend, for some much-needed time off from being carers of TwentiesPerson. If I wasn’t going to be exploring the far end of the Mornington Peninsula, and bathing at the hot springs, I’d do some witchie work on TMS outcomes. But I won’t have time, except for Monday afternoon, and early Tuesday morning. Well, at least that will give me time for planning.

Ciao bellas and bellos.

The Daily Blog: Dear Artist

Dear Artist Self:

Who told you that you are too much, and thus must put too little of everything on the page? Can you remember back?

Dear Satya:

I remember an early passion for pastel colours instead of brights, despite deep jewel brights suiting me better. I am ‘deep earthy soft’ according to one stylist, which makes me sound like damp earth, or manure.

I used to spend art class at school mixing up pale yellow paint, scoop after scoop of it. Not painting with it, just mixing it.

Dear Satya:

I’m scared that if I put too much of anything on the page, I’ll ruin it, I won’t be able to take it back. There will always be the smudged charcoal mark, the imprint of the pencil, the blobby paint. I’m so scared, I’m frozen.

Dear Artist Self:

Does writer self also hold herself back?

Dear Satya:

Yes.

Dear Selves:

You know that only by being too much, by going to end of our being, will we find the true gold.

Dear Satya:

We’re scared.

Dear Love:

What shall we do?

Dear Satya:

Hold them.