They shoot vegans, don’t they?

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This vegan can’t catch a break. Doomed to a life without a mate because I WON’T EVER DATE another non-vegan. Doomed, because solo women are missing out on something, right? Besides sex and compromise. In general, solo, childless women are looked on as selfish non-breeders with impossibly high standards.

I recall the DC matchmaker who balked at my desire to date vegans only. I was admonished for “limiting” my already small pool of prospective partners. Why must they be vegan? For the same reason non-smokers, Christians, and non-smoking Christians want to date other non-smokers, Christians, or non-smoking Christians–I want to share my mind, body, and life with someone who shares my values.

Being a divorced woman of a certain age with Rheumatoid Arthritis, dentures, and gray hair (yes, I’m letting my natural silver mane grow long and wild) isn’t enough of a disadvantage? She didn’t say it but I knew she was thinking it. Why be so picky? Veganism’s kinda, you know, extreme. You’re never going to find a VEGAN man in DC. It’s almost impossible to find a man in this town, period!

No, I don’t think veganism’s extreme, unless you think striving to cause the least amount of suffering in the world by eating peaceful food is extreme. As Christian-y as this country is, you’d think we’d all be vegans. Am I alone in experiencing the word, “peace,” being tossed around like confetti when I attended church? Or finding it incongruous that I sat down at tables laden with dead animals as I bowed my head during prayers of thanksgiving and peace? I’ve watched animals being slaughtered. Lined up for slaughter. Their fear and struggle to escape is tangible. Their cries haunt me. There is nothing peaceful about it.

I know what peace is since becoming a vegan. I didn’t know it as an earnest, baptized Presbyterian of over twenty years. Now I’m agnostic. I don’t think there’s a God. If I believed one existed, I wouldn’t worship it. Why would I worship someone who allowed such suffering in and of this world? And if I wouldn’t worship the “Creator,” why would I share my life, or fridge, with a mortal who supported said suffering?

But because veganism isn’t mainstream, because it’s “restrictive,” “elitist,” “unhealthy,” unsanctioned and disavowed by church, state, BigBanks (as if there’s any other kind), BigAg, BigPharma, doctors (most of whom receive gifts from BigPharma; check out yours at https://projects.propublica.org/docdollars/), hospitals, and schools, I’m supposed to date meat-eaters, even though their value systems and mine don’t mesh on this most basic and precious level.

No.

So I’m writing again. And I’ll practice my audition piece. Learn Spanish. Move closer to my tribe. Pay off debt. Travel. Grow food. Grow. Share it. Share it all.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

“I come bearing much news which I shall now birth.”

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He broke up with me. Actually, he broke up with me about a month before telling me. With words, that is.

He told me as much in bed during sex one Sunday morning. He couldn’t stay hard. The first time it (didn’t) happen, my gut knew it was over. I should’ve listened to it, to the silence where once cries of ecstasy rang out. I loved him, I think, so I “lalalalala’d” over the sounds of silence and “I’m just stressed about work,” teared up, and asked where we were going together, if we were going somewhere together.

Then he said he loved me. I believed him instead of his limp dick. So remember, kiddies, a limp dick never lies.

We broke up in a Whole Foods cafe. We’d walked there from my apartment, where he entered looking better than ever. I told him so and we kissed warmly, holding each other close. Did I say this break up came out of left field? We held hands as we headed to the store together. A stranger passing on the sidewalk (a man! in DC!) said what a cute couple we made. A short time later, he stopped me, pulled me to him, and kissed me at a busy intersection.

I’d walked into a Rob Reiner movie. I lapped it up like a thirsty, giggly puppy. Within a half hour, as he graded papers, he told me, “I’m not generous or patient enough to be with someone with Rheumatoid Arthritis.” After confessing to having made weekend plans with friends–solo. Oh, and the week before fucking Valentine’s Day.

It’s taken five months for me to write about it. It’s clumsy and late, the work of a procrastinating, embarrassed, angry, relieved, getting over it, striving to be better, wannabe writer. And to quote another disabled character, “That’s all I have to say about that.”

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The Return of the Klonopin Junkie

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My response to a recent article on a study that showed the resilience of twins who had suffered trauma. Perhaps you’ll understand why I wasn’t impressed by the study upon reading it (link and comment below).

Study on twins suggests most people return to their normal happiness level after trauma

This is a misleading article title as the author notes the major weaknesses of the study. I was physically and emotionally abused and neglected as a child. Five-plus years of weekly therapy (2010-14) and powerful antidepressant and anxiety meds, though certainly helpful (the meds, for a few years but now don’t help; in the process of weaning off them; difficult), hasn’t rid me of the traumatic memories and the frustrating and useless bouts of anger and irrational behavior (verbally lashing out at abuser).

I’m reading a book that’s making a lot of sense to me, The Body Keeps the Score: Brain, Mind, and Body in the Healing of Trauma, by Bessel Van Der Kolk, M.D. I should add that since childhood I have developed several auto-immune disorders–ezcema, allergies, hyper- and hypothyroidism, Rheumatoid Arthritis, Sjogren’s Syndrome, as well as being diagnosed with Major Depressive Disorder, Generalized Anxiety Disorder and Chronic Suicidal Ideation. What all of these illnesses have in common? Chronic inflammation as a major cause. And what’s a major cause of chronic inflammation? Chronic stress, something I’ve lived with my entire life.

Do I think my childhood trauma is behind these health issues? Yes. I suffer from PTSD, not the mental disorders listed above. And the very activities I’ve been drawn to from childhood to now–acting, writing, dance, yoga, meditation, a vegan lifestyle (before drug weaning I doubled my dark, leafy greens intake after reading about certain foods positive effect on mood and mine vastly improved within 24 hours which means the drugs had me baseline functioning in life)–all of which made me flourish and played a part in the happiest times of my life, were and continue to be looked down upon by already unsupportive family members.

I’m not eschewing all Western medicine but I’ve grown wary of what are now called “psychopharmacologists,” shrinks who write scripts for powerful, dangerous (in regards to side effects on them and through weaning process), ineffective drugs to millions of people, many of whom have suffered trauma that don’t heal through mainstream APA methods (that make the APA and BigPharma very wealthy, coincidentally). I highly recommend Van Der Kolk’s book for anyone who’s suffered trauma and struggling to maintain a semblance of a healthy, vibrant life.

CAN WE TAWKIFY? WHAT A DIFFERENCE A DATE MAKES

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It’s Thursday, two days before my second “first date” and I’m in a foul mood. My mind’s replaying the awful first “first date” with the pretentious professor and HISTORIAN who doesn’t like cats, casts lines with baited hooks of information I’m supposed to latch onto for more (insensitive and offensive metaphor and game-playing), and is only too happy to split a $20 check. As my friend and dating mentor, Renny, says, “That’s just tacky.”

The more I think about that date the more convinced I am that Bachelor #2, who sounds as perfect for me as Bachelor #1, is a dud, another typical DC male who gets a hard on comparing Ivy League schools and stacks of degrees; basically human kryptonite that sucks any excitement or optimism out of me, leaving me weak from hunger (for real conversation and some goddamn dinner) and a tension headache.

Whew, am I in a bad mood, one that turns tar-like so I feel stuck in it with little chance of rescue. Such is the life of a 40+ divorced woman with a penchant for glomming onto black thoughts, my brain having its way with them. Plus I’m pissed ’cause the date “mission” calls for wearing a classy evening outfit. My last classy evening outfit was my wedding gown, so I’m scouring Macy’s, ModCloth’s and Amazon’s online “classy evening outfit” possibilities, resentment growing by the hour as I shop for clothes just sitting on my sofa.

I have a date outfit, I grumble, as I take another turn around online stores, each outfit I like sold out. Only after I pay far too much for a dress–for a movie and drinks; this isn’t the 50’s–do I mention the “classy evening outfit” stress to my matchmaker, R, who says, “Oh, I just meant wear something you feel confident and comfortable in!” Just call my studio Bleak House at this point.

It arrives in time and I slide it on after showering. Easily slide it on as it’s too big and long, the pretty eyelet skirt dragging on the floor. Harumph. The anger tank’s dry by now so I sigh…and remember the knee-length sleeveless lined crochet dress hanging in the hall closet. My seamless panties are clean and the same accessories work. After FOUR attempts–the dress lining is a solid tank–the blasted thing’s on right. Laughter replaces the sighs and I remind myself to never buy clothing without zippers or buttons again. It’s an RA thing.

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By now any expectations about this date have gone the way of the dodo. My only fear is of being late, but I always fear this. Fear is an asshole because even though I’m directionally challenged downtown I arrive at our meeting place, the cinema, thirty minutes early. Hey, look, a Barnes & Noble! I’m carrying a microscopic purse as opposed to the usual huge tote bag (with matching purse inside) that holds my current read, magazines, journal and/or laptop, and now I wish I’d brought it ’cause I need something to read. So off I go in search of the latest Vegan Health & Fitness issue (score!), then grab a copy of The Martian based on a friend’s recommendation before I can talk myself out of buying a new book. Thanks, Steph–it’s good!

Of course, moments after returning to the cinema he walks up to me. “He” being the kind, funny, smart, talented, cute, warm, gentle, cat-loving, caring, strong, confident, compassionate and passionate man with whom I have a third date this Saturday. You know that picture you carry in your mind of the “ideal” man or woman for you?

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Of course they look like models with their perfect hair, smile, and body. We’re drowning in these images, countless examples of what women and men are supposed to be, courtesy of Madison Avenue. Even my “Love” board on Pinterest is populated with gorgeous photos of culturally-sanctioned gorgeous couples eating by candlelight, canoeing, or canoodling in gorgeous ways. Look up “Love” if you’re on Pinterest (you’re not on Pinterest???). You’ll see.’Cause who wants to look at pictures of “average” couples in love, falling in love, in love for decades, and how that love radiates from within, that lovely glow?

I do. And there’s nothing average about the two of us together.

YOU DON’T HAVE THE GUTS TO WATCH IT, DO YOU?

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I made myself watch it, not for a chance to win tickets. I don’t care about that. I watched it to bear witness to the atrocities billions of animals endure, as penance for the years I didn’t know or think about them, and to motivate me to continue my mission, always, as an animal advocate, a peace advocate. I bawled, scaring Ziggy lying next to me. Please take 4 minutes out of your day to watch what so many won’t. They’ll contribute to it but not watch it. It’s the absolute least you can do for these animals.

“NOSE TO TAIL PALEO DINNER’S READY! GET YOUR OFFAL AND UNDER-UTILISED CUTS OF BEEF HERE!”

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Definition of Asana: any of various yogic postures; Sanskrit āsana manner of sitting, from āste he sits; akin to Greek hēsthai to sit, Hittite es-. First Known Use: circa 1934 (www.miriam-webster.com/dictionary/asana)

“We are super pleased to announce our next nose to tail paleo dinner at our paleo restaurant “Asana by Pete Evans” in Brisbane for the 10th November is on sale now. The last one sold out very quickly so jump onto http://www.trybooking.com/160577 to grab your tix.

This time we are featuring Cleavers organic grass fed and finished beef. Exec chef Josh Harris and I are creating another exciting menu featuring offal and under-utilised cuts of beef that will be sure to please and our wonderful chefs Monica and Jacinta Cannataci will be whipping up another memorable paleo dessert.
Love to see you there.” (bold is my addition; Pete Evans’ Facebook page/post)

Don’t you love how he substitutes “slaughtered” with “finished” beef? It takes an Australian-sized amount of cognitive dissonance to further the “Humanely Raised” lies that are gaining popularity (I’m talking to you, Whole Foods!) with omnivores needing “reassurance” that eating genetically manipulated, abused, raped, confined, sodomized, mutilated, terrified animals who suffer the loss of their children, suffer every unnaturally shortened day of their lives and shoddy slaughter isn’t immoral and unethical. And an Australian-sized asshole to name his restaurant “Asana.” (I’m talking to you, Pete Evans, but I wish you peace. Goodness knows you need it.) You know what’s coming–he wrote an article for MindBodyGreen about the paleo diet being “right” for him, and I left a comment (link to article below):

http://www.mindbodygreen.com/0-21718/pete-evans-why-paleo-is-still-right-for-me.html

As “right” as you think a “Paleo” diet is for you, (there isn’t one Paleo diet; it depended on where Paleolithic humans lived and many were nomadic so their diets changed constantly; also, there were only about a million living on Earth at the time; Earth and billions of innocent animals are suffering from human overpopulation now) what you eat has far-reaching consequences.

There’s no such thing as “humanely” slaughtered meat (look up the definition of “slaughter”), about 99% of “food” animals in the US are “raised” and slaughtered on factory farms, it still takes far more precious resources to raise your “humane” animals than it does to grow organic plant foods, it’s unsustainable, unhealthy (all animal protein has saturated fats and cholesterol, not to mention the urea–cell waste that’s meant to be excreted during urination–that covers animal flesh as he/she is slaughtered and, in part, “adds” to the pleasant taste for omnivores, and whatever else comes in contact with it as it makes its way to your market), it’s not just about you (the “I/It” over the “I/Thou” mentality is linked to racism, slavery, sexism, poverty, starvation, mental illness, homelessness, incarceration, elitism, what we call capitalism today, war, and the human-caused destruction of and unimaginable violence against the planet and our fellow non-human animal inhabitants), and is unethical and immoral.

‘CAUSE I’M ENFP, I’M DYNAMITE”

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I couldn’t decide which one I liked best (common for ENFPs) so I posted all of them. They’re all true and, well, The Little Mermaid’s my favorite Disney animated film. And it works because in the animal world ENFPs are dolphins and mermaids, while not real (well, the jury’s still out according to my lease manager who watches some mermaid show), are also excellent swimmers who speak their own language. Way out of your league. Like 20,000 leagues.

Don’t Date An ENFP