Driven And Enthusiastic

From an interview with Ingrid Laguna: “I’ve always been driven. I’m a passionate person and I throw myself into my work, whether it’s drumming, teaching or writing. I still have a school report from when I was twelve where a teacher wrote: ‘Ingrid needs to learn to control her natural exhuberance’. Who says that to a kid?”

Well, dear Ingrid, you look a lot younger than I am, but I can tell you now that I unnerved teachers with my very focussed ambitions: writer and astronaut, most likely combining the two to be the first writer in space, and part of the first Mars colony, as chronicler.

From age 12, I made a resolution each January 1 to be that little bit more dedicated to my writing. What that looked like, I couldn’t and can’t say. Presumably, write more. Which, as I edged towards 16, became ‘get published’, then ‘get published professionally’. Had all that in the bag just shy of 18.

Capricorn Sun, Mercury and Mars, bitches.

I also had a school report that said: “Almost too conscientious.”

Who says that to a kid? Who says that, full stop?!

Yes, I do find it a bit of a bugbear these days when I’ve signed up for about 20 courses, and have done maybe 1/3 of one course. Conscientious me wants to complete them all. The greater, lazier part of me wants to say ‘fuck it’ and look for the next Good Thing.

OohShinyGirl says I have ADHD as an autism side dish. Could well be. PTSD has set off the behaviours that were likely lying dormant when I was younger.

So yes, dear Ingrid, I can assure you that teachers do say stuff like that. They write it in reports too. My Year 11 Physics teacher wrote: “Works hard for no result. WHY?” Fuck you, Mr Wragg, and be a kinder teacher. Oh well, you’re probably dead now, so nothing to be done. But I hope that in your old age, you gave thought to your younger self, and how fucking smug you were. Probably not, though. You didn’t strike me as the sort of man who’d think twice about his smugness, his casual humiliation of students, and his ‘you figure it out’ attitude. Not helpful.

I have an image of you standing on the shores of the Styx, and no one giving you a fucking clue that you need two coins to pay Charon the boatman. Good. It means you’ll still be there when I arrive, and I can kick your arse.

Trans Cranial Magnetic Stimulation Therapy – ongoing story

It’s been 8 days since my last treatment. I was supposed to have my once-a-week session yesterday, but the clinician phoned in sick, so I’m now having treatment on Friday(today’s Wednesday). Honestly, today, I’m tired. I’ve been awake since 3.30am. Combination of having to get up to wee, feeling that biorhythmic body low at that time of the morning and thus, internally chilly, and 2 of my 4 cats thinking it was time to yell for breakfast. I kept putting on the audio book of the moment (THE SCENT KEEPER by Erika Bauermeister is 5/5 for me), hoping I’d drift back to sleep, but no, I was super-interested in the story.

And what with Angel sitting on my pillow, yelling that it was time for breakfast, and Chloe walking on me, purring, bunting, and hopping over to chew on the prayer plant beside my bed, I finally gave up on sleep and just listened to the audio book and tried to feel warm.

I tense up when I feel cold. Thus, I have aches all over. A hot bath has only gone partway to alleviating matters.

Was it an anxious awake? No. No fretting. Just….awake.

To be honest, by the time I had breakfast and a cup of tea, I felt wrung out, cold, and tired. A little sad, perhaps. I think lockdown is getting to me, as is the super cold and wet weather. I write that just as the sun peeks out for half a second. Oh Helios, you messing with me?

Chloe is now curled up on one of the dog beds beside my little writing table, purring away. A tabby fur doughnut totally content with her world. Sure, purr it up, kid. You’re not the one dragging through the day.

The depression stays gone, but with this little sad here…well, time will tell if it’s a sad, or tiredness, or just season-related. I suspect the latter two. I don’t especially have that dragged down feeling of the abyss that accompanies depression.

I mean, I’m here, aren’t I? I’m blogging, as per my weekly date with myself to update about TMS.

I’m craving going out for breakfast or lunch with my husband. I’d really like to do that, but not for another couple of weeks at least. Lockdown Number 5.

Even if it is cold and wet outside, I must get out for a walk today. It improves everything.

How I Read Oracle Cards – Hedgewitch Oracle Deck

Good morning, cardslingers. I’m a day early this week. Why? Because I’m up and about with time to spare before yoga kicks off (via zoom, because lockdown 5).

The Hedgewitch Oracle is a sweet little deck, very minimalist. I’m not familiar with the deck. I have it because of the name, and the artwork, but it shouted last night that it wanted some attention, so here it is, sitting in the weak winter light through the front room windows.

I’m asking for guidance as to what happened to a novel I started back in 2014 in Paris: what did I do with the unfinished manuscript?

Burdock: Tenacity. It’s a plant that has spread all over the world from Europe. It’s leaves are prickly and stick to clothing. It’s used in beauty products, skin care, and Chinese medicine, as well as western herbals.

I’m not overly familiar with burdock, as it doesn’t grow in my garden. I’ve no doubt encountered it in the wild. Famed as a liver treatment, I know that much.

In terms of divination, does this mean that I’ll find the manuscript if I dig through my files enough? Or the fact that burdock has long roots mean that I could, if I wanted, rewrite the 10,000 words I’ve deleted? I suppose I could, but the idea doesn’t fill me with warmth. It was a fun idea I started, but I had no real plot, and a character was taking over which would have meant a lot of research, and a totally different direction. Besides, I was exhausted after travelling, and the whole thing just fell apart.

The purple colour in the card suggests to me that I should trust my instincts here, that it’s not worth resurrecting, even though a friend wants to get ahold of it and play with it.

Yes, the idea could grow easily, and if it does, it would likely come to fruition in the summer, when Burdock flowers.

Bowing to the Tenacity of Burdock, I will faithfully do a search through my files more thoroughly, but my intuition says I deleted it as utterly stupid, a damned foolish notion at a time when I had no energy to give.

Guidance for Magical Folx – 19th July – 25th July 2021

A one-card pull from the Lioness Oracle Tarot Deck, both for guidance for any magical folx tuning in, and a wee instructional on how I read tarot and oracle cards. The Lioness Deck caught me eye first thing when I went to my deck shelves(yes, plural).

So let’s see what guidance the Lioness deck has for us this coming week.

The Moon is waxing in Scorpio, moving towards Full Moon in Aquarius next Sunday. As the moon energy builds, it’s a good time for spells to do with growth, bringing towards you magic, anything that you can see needing a ‘coming to fruition soon’ energy.

Queen of Pentacles: a nude woman reclinese surrounded by flowers, and leafy branches. The Queen of earthly delights, material manifestation, and attracting what she wants in the physical realm. She does it easily, and with comfort and joy.

No putting ourselves out with our magic this week, folx. It is indeed a time for magical manifestation. Need that wage rise, new plants for the garden, better job, fresh clothing, a fridge full of good food(however you translate that), a roof over your head, a better roof? Anything that’s on the bottom of Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs fits the bill here. The practical, useful, material stuff that helps life go on. Look at that green crystal righ tin the centre of the card. Green = abundance. (It may be green citrine, or a peridot.) Get manifesting, folx, and I’ll see you next week on the Full Moon in Aquarius, for a full moon reading, and another Guidance post.

Trans Cranial Magnetic Stimulation update – the last of 2 treatments per week

The other day, I noted that I hadn’t received a new calendar of dates, so yesterday, after brain zapping, I said: “I’ve only got one appointment booked in after this one.” Clinician and I busied ourselves making more appointments, two per week.

Then….hey, maybe I’m supposed to have only one. So, she looked at the in-house psychiatrist’s notes, and lo, one appointment per week as of next week. To be honest, with my anxiety ramped up again(still not at the level it used to be, I’d put it at maybe 5-6/10), I’m a little nervous to be dropping back to one treatment per week.

The depression I’m not worried about. I had a sharp rise to my current level of ‘good’ early on, back in April-May, and really haven’t looked back.

But that anxiety…..hmmmm.

Last weekend, I had two big things scheduled for the Saturday – catch up with a friend I haven’t seen in 46 years, and the first Key Word Sign workshop in the afternoon. Too much, too many people, far too rushed in terms of driving. I had severe jitters and shakes for a couple of days.

The thing is, Fear of Missing Out, and endless curiosity about the world means that I WANT to do so much more than I currently do. I have a big case of the ‘I used to be to’s. I used to be able to do all sorts of thing in a single day. Possibly that’s why I have anxiety now. Possibly, I ran rough-shod over my own nature and intuition for too many years, and that’s why I’m where I am now.

It’s an ingrained habit – say yes to All The Things. This dates back to….oh, possibly my early childhood, when I became aware for the first time that I wasn’t having the ‘normal family experience of siblings. My two brothers were/are twenty years older than me, so by the time I was three years old, both were married and gone from the family home. I grew up an only. And because Dad worked and devoted his spare time to the baseball club, and Mum was at the sewing machine day and night, trying to keep the family afloat as a dressmaker, I spent most of my time alone. When I started school, I realised I was missing ‘family life’.

I think I got it into my head, or someone must have told me, that I was boring. Which, to my mind, was the worst thing in the world. Can I blame my Venus in Aquarius for loving the eccentric, the weird, the unusual, the unique? Anyway, it started with odd reading habits, following my nose through Moorabbin library.

Then, I remember in my late teens and early twenties, choosing to ‘do stuff’ because it would, and I quote “feed my writing”. Thanks, writing books, for informing me that, in the scheme of things, I lead a pretty enclosed life.

It wasn’t until my 40’s that I faced the fact that most of the stuff I went and did….well, it wasn’t to feed my writing, because I rarely wrote about the stuff I did – hot air ballooning, zip lining etc. I did these things just for the experience, and the constant worry that I’d be in a nursing home, crying for all the things I never dared.

Hence the habit of yes to this, yes to that, yes to something else. Which leads to stuffing 5 things into a day, which leads to discombobulated and rushed Satya, which leads to anxiety. Which is now an ingrained brain habit that’s proving fucking hard to kick.

My anxiety is the most over-protected, Victorian, vapour-riddled maiden aunt ever.

“Oh my, get the smelling salts. I’m all of a dither!” At the slightest request. The slightest request!!

I had one blissful month in May where my anxiety shut up, and my brain was quiet. No suicidal ideation, no depression, and NO ANXIETY. Just quiet. I also wasn’t asking anything of myself besides: get up, shower, get dressed, go to TMS, come home.

As soon as I asked anything of myself, bam, thin edge of the wedge.

Yes, I’m fucking cross. I expected better than this.

So, back to curating my calendar. I went to the gym yesterday. Thus, nothing else beyond a couple of house chores, and a poem on my blog could be asked.

Today, free day, and I’m tempted to say: “I’m gonna do the things. Have an Experience, because I’m essentially boring, and it’s a wide world out there, and I must have dinner table conversation.”

CRAZY. I AM DRIVING MYSELF CRAZY.

Why can’t I just lie on the couch all day, reading rubbish?

I am a work in progress.

Poem – She Travels For Work

She travels for work, my daughter.

I had the email the other day:

‘on my way home, Mum.

Set up my room.’

Which means ‘clear away your paints,

Mother.

I do not acknowledge that you call it

the spare room.

I do not acknowledge that you have grown,

or changed at all’.

Six months at home, six months away.

She heads south,

tends her kingdom there.

She doesn’t say much.

Doesn’t want to bother me,

she says.

As if I can’t see the worry lines,

how pale she becomes.

I suppose all women are queens in their own domain,

but revert to child again

in the family home.

She has a man there,

I know,

but I know nothing about him either.

Well, apart from the usual:

steady job, older than her,

has a dog apparently.

He can’t have kids.

There goes my fancies

of being a grandmother.

If he mourns her when she’s away,

she’s never said.

Towards the end of her six months here,

there’s a letter or two.

Fancy black and silver stationery.

She says to get over it,

not be sad when she’s gone.

I was crazy at first,

withdrew entirely from the world,

wept.

I’m fine now.

Sometimes, I dread her coming home.

Sure, things are more lively,

but who’s to say I want that

at my age?

She says I never want anything to change.

I smile to myself.

Oh Persephone, if only you knew

how much I love my spare room,

my new hobbies,

my life without you.

I see the daffodils are you.

You’ll be home soon,

and I must pack up my paints.

I was working on a nice winter scene, too.

Oh well.

It will keep for six months.

*****

Thankyou to Setjataset for the ‘prompt’. She has just posted her own Persephone poem, and it got me thinking about how the daffodils and jonquils are starting to push up out of the earth, we are past the Winter Solstice, and thus, Persephone is coming back from her six months in Hades, with Hades.

Demeter often gets a bad rap in the Persephone story, being the wildly possessive and over-protective mother. I, too, have an adult daughter who I have launched into the world. She now lives interstate with her husband and three children. It got me thinking about how women change once their children are grown, and how hard it can be for those adult children to accept that the mum they left at home is not the woman who welcomes them; who now has a separate life.

Covers

Whenever the band warmed up,

they played covers of other artists’ songs.

Imagine a folk band,

lead singer barefoot, with almost-obligatory long

Joni Mitchell hair,

pounding their way through Nine Inch Nails.

Afterwards, blinking in astonishment

at their own ferocity,

they asked the sound engineer:

“How was that?”

No one had the heart to say

‘so much better than anything else you play’.

The band readied their Peter, Paul and Mary playlist,

never knowing they were really

someones else.

*****

This poem came from a prompt on the Poets and Storytellers United website, where the writer talked about singers and bands covering songs. I’m a bit of a fan of covers. The prompt reminded me of the time I was in the room where a folk band was warming up.

How I Read Tarot – one card pull

Here’s my weekly ‘how I read a tarot card’ instructional, folx. Only a day late. Yesterday I got caught up in rewriting an old, old short story. Yes, I am not only a blogger, and tarot reader, but I also write short speculative fiction, speculative and literary poetry, memoir, creative non fiction, and articles. Add witchery to the mix, and being a woman, wife, mother, grandma, carer, advocate, coach, mentor, friend, sister, and flaneur, and you can see how even the best calendar notes can go astray.

Today, I’m asking how our NDIS review is going to go. My offspring, TwentiesPerson, has a yearly review of their National Disability Insurance Scheme plan. These are always stressful, as we are dependent upon the reviewer, and the NDIS, for the money that helps TwentiesPerson live the life they do, with a view to eventually becoming more independent and moving out. Unfortunately, the NDIS has gone the way of Centrelink, the Australian Social Security system, and the process is stressful, humiliating, hard, and awful. I wish it was different, but there it is, said baldly.

I am using the Songs For the Journey Home tarot. It’s an older deck that I’ve owned for a year, but haven’t played with.

Wheel of Fortune. Hmmm, the Wheel signifies change. On the wheel there is both good and bad. Success and disaster, happiness and sadness, growth and stagnation. All this card says is ‘change’.

So I go consult the book that comes with the deck. It points out the third/indigo eye shape in the centre of the card, saying that intuitive feelings can come into play here. Around the eye is a mandala. The yellow that surrounds the mandala speaks to the divine clarity available to us, so says the book. Around the mandala are images from life.

My feeling is that the review will go well. I haven’t been concerned about it, not enough to have done magic, or thought to divinate until today, the actual day of the review(30 minutes and counting). We are asking for more money.

Ah, just had a phone call from our NDIS coordinator. The review has been postponed due to our coordinator’s son being ill. Ah.

Even so, the card certainly speaks to ‘change’. Change of date, as it turns out. This is outcome happening as we speak, folx. Lol.

I’ll be asking this question of my deck once we have a new date.