Despite my heavy love for rock and metal, I am an excellent dancer. I was born in 1973, so my ears were blessed with everything from the Bee Gees to The Cars to Dokken to Slayer.
And I can dance to all of it. Because dancing makes everything better. If you’re in a bad mood or feeling down, I challenge you to put on any song you like and dance to it. How could you be bummed out and dance at the same time?
You can’t! There is no way someone could be sad or mad or upset or depressed while dancing. It goes against the theory of dancing relativity. Okay, so that theory doesn’t exist, but if it did, my statement would be the basis.
You cannot be sad while dancing.
The first time I danced to anything was in my crib as a baby when I wouldn’t stop crying. My grandmother told me I was wailing and wailing and she had two choices: smother me or soothe me. She took the little Fisher Price music box on the dresser, wound it up and threw it in my crib.
I stopped crying and started kicking my feet and smiling.
So I guess the first time I danced was before I could walk. And I still love it. Every day on my way back and forth to work I have the radio turned up loud and sing and dance in my seat to get through my grueling one hour commute (two hour round trip).
Even when I used to drink and go to bars, I always made sure I was at a bar that had a working jukebox or a live band because the music made it better.
Music is life. Dancing is a close second.
I’m still writing the NaNoWriMo 2017 novel.
Keep on keepin’ on friends! What are you working on this month?
I was born and raised in the city and I hated almost every moment of my life there. My grandmother lived in the greater northeast part of Philadelphia, and while still the city, it was calmer than my neighborhood. Plus she lived down the street from a section of Pennypack Park where I spent most of my outdoor childhood when I was at her place. Being in the woods was nicer than being in the city.
The cacophony of traffic, people, heavy equipment, and sirens was enough to drive me insane. My neighborhood wasn’t too chaotic, but when I got older I had to go to schools outside Bridesburg and there were more people, trolleys, buses, and lots of noise. A few times I cut school with a friend and we took the el train down to the Gallery in Center City Philadelphia and that was insane!
All the noise and business frustrated me.
Almost every weekend I would go up my grandmother’s place and despite her still living in the city, she lived in a less congested part and it was like a breath of only semi-polluted air. Then we would take a ride out to New Hope, PA and that was mind-blowing.
It was so quiet! Where was the cacophonyof madness that was in the city? Where were the loud vehicles, screaming children and occasional, rambling lunatic at Bridge & Pratt?
How could I make these twisty, tree-lined roads a reality for myself?
The stillness, the glimpse of a deer on the side of the road, old cemeteries and farmhouses and of course, the little borough of New Hope with it’s quiet, bustling Main Street was enough to instill in me a life goal of becoming a lawyer, moving to New Hope and having a cat – but no kids.
Life didn’t go that way and now here I am, almost thirty years later, back in school as I try to make my dream of small town, quiet living a reality. My husband and I are researching small towns in Pennsylvania because as soon as I get my degree (I am thinking Behavioral Science now) we are effing out of here! We live in a suburban borough, but it is still too busy for me.
Every Sunday, my husband and I take a drive out to a new town in the country and I love every moment of our adventure. Yesterday we wound up in Lehighton, PA and found a cool fall festival loaded with awesome treats, great crafts, and free parking!
People complain about pain, but pain helps us grow. It tests our boundaries and lets us know what we like and don’t like. It helps us feel when we’ve had enough. Pain shows us what we can handle and what we have to change.
Change is inevitable. Sometimes I hate change, but it has to be. I mean, nothing changes if nothing changes. Sometimes I wish it was still 1986 and I could get a ‘do over’ but then my life might be different right now. We can talk about fate, journeys, and predetermined destinations in another post.
I watched the miniseries on Ted Kaczynski (the Unabomber) and I felt sad. I felt sad because he was a man who was a genius who had been through a lot. He could have helped so many people but he chose to hurt people. He could have used his knowledge and pain to help others and make a difference. Instead, he used his gifts for malice. He lived in a hunting cabin in the middle of nowhere and that frightened me because I would love to live in a cabin in the middle of nowhere. Does that make me a psychopath?
I went to the park Saturday to take a walk and reconnect with nature and also with myself. I’m still weeding out stuff to write this memoir (which I already started) that is really a rough draft. I have gone through every event in my life so far.
I have been through hell.
But I am still here.
So my story needs to be told – not with homemade bombs but with powerful words.
I used to be ashamed of my scars, but now I am proud. Why should I be ashamed of things that have shaped me? I shouldn’t and neither should you.
Never be ashamed of your scars. They are a part of who you are.
Fashionable. Ha! What a riot. I have always been two seasons behind on fashion. My grandmother tried desperately to keep me up with the times when I was a kid and a teenager. “Oh, Darlene, it’s the latest fashion. Don’t you want to be in style and fashionable like all the other girls?”
I guess after seeing how much dirt I played in and clothes I ripped, she decided I was a mini version of her and gave up. I tried to get ‘back into it’ when I got older; but, after a while, I gave up because it was just too much work. How the hell do you women keep it together getting all dressed up, doing your hair, full face makeup, and ill-fitting shoes every single effing day? Do you love it? Does it make you happy? Do you even think about it when you are spending countless minutes, sometimes hours in the mirror prepping yourself for the world? Could you leave your house and feel just as confident without makeup and fashionable clothes as you do with them? I am not asking as a smartass… these are legitimate questions I have because…
To me, it is exhausting. The most effort I ever put into getting dressed up and looking nice was the first four months of my sophomore year of high school. By January? I was wearing ripped jeans, flannel shirts and going to school with wet hair and no makeup.
I am not knocking the women who do it… I just know the whole time Iwas doing it, I felt false. Like I wasn’t really being me. I was just being the version of a woman that society wanted me to be. And as long as I pretended to be the ‘woman I wanted didn’t want to be’ I would like myself.
As much as I admire all you ladies for your hard work, I also wonder about these things for myself. There was another time in my life when I couldn’t leave the house without makeup, hair styled, cleavage aglow, and the highest heels I could find, because me being 5’10” just wasn’t tall enough when I was in my twenties and thirties. I did this because I hated ‘the me’ inside and I felt like if I could fake the outside, the inside would merge.
I played that part for a while, but every day when I was getting ready for work, school, to go to the bar, whatever… I was annoyed the whole time. And at first, I was seriously judgemental about women who I saw often and were dressed and spiffed to the tee. I said awful things about you in my head and now, as I reflect on that part of me, I know that I was as envious as I was jealous. I felt like it was your fault that I had to dress like that.
I wanted to be like you! I wanted to get excited about picking out an outfit and putting on makeup and going to the nail salon for a pedicure. I wanted to get excited about styling and/or getting my hair colored. But now I am in my mid-forties and I just give up. It is too much effing work and in the end, I feel like everyone can see through my facade of falseness.
These days, I do get dressed up (a little) for holidays or maybe if my husband and I go to a concert or something, but even still, when we go out, I am not really dressed up compared to most of the other women I see. I’ve accepted this part of me at this point in my life. I am as comfortable not getting dressed up as some women are getting dressed up.
While the lowest point of my life was sitting in a recliner in someone’s basement doped up on pills, there were many previous disasters that dragged me to that point.
I had lost my job, then my house and then the final blow… I lost my children. Surely I could have taken immediate action and changed my ways ASAP.
But first I had to get high and oh yeah, get drunk too and let’s not forget going out to bars and to make bad decisions about people that put myself in serious danger.
What the hell was I thinking? That was just it… I was NOT thinking. I was too busy playing the victim and blaming my life on everyone and everything else.
When I first lost my job I could have probably done the following: FOUND A NEW EFFING JOB!
I could have done a lot of things… but that didn’t fit my ‘victim mentality’ and while I was playing the ‘damsel in distress’ I was really a disastrous damsel spitting hellfire and burning every bridge I crossed. That life seems a world away now. Thank goodness for second chances.
Disastrous damsel; wicked and free
Who is this angel you pretend to be
Blackness is your state of mind
Your screaming soul, so unkind
Is this really who you are
Or did your game go too far
Take your breath and suck it out
Breath back in without a doubt
Life really can be joyous and true
Have faith in love and have faith in you.
People really do change… they just need a really good reason to change.
I haven’t been around… not sure who noticed. And no, it isn’t some silly game. I started school this week; two seven-week progressive courses which are essentially fifteen weeks smashed into seven.
I mean, I have a mid-term in two weeks. I am still writing as much as I can but I left the day job at 1 pm Wednesday to go get my textbooks and catch up on some studies.
I guess you could say I am as busy as a bumble bee.
In other news, my area, Bucks County, has some serious murder mystery stuff going on! Four young men went missing last week and there are connections to another young man who is the son of farm owners in the Solebury section of the county.
The ground was dug up with a backhoe where cadaver dogs sniffed out the scent of human remains buried over twelve feet beneath the surface. I cannot imagine the mentality of someone who would go through so much trouble to bury a body that far underground! I won’t go into detail, as you may have already heard the story. I feel sad for the families of these young men.
Finally, I am looking forward to this weekend. Getting caught up on my studies and focus on the end game which is an associate’s degree! I have the grit to pull it off for sure. I have been dragging my ass on finishing school since I started way back in 2001. I was gung ho for a couple years and managed to get 36 credits, but then I had that whole issue with the drugs and drinking and despite getting sober in 2006, still didn’t pursue my goal.
Well, things go the way they go for whatever reason and I am excited to finally be back in the game.
Do you have any goals (long or short-term) you are currently pursuing?
Have a great week! I will try to write something creative once I get caught up on my studies this weekend.
Sharing my story openly and honestly about living, surviving and thriving with Bipolar 1 Disorder and PTSD to increase awareness, educate, reduce stigma, prevent suicide, inspire, give hope and let God's love shine through me and touch you...