Emails for breakfast, lunch, and dinner

Ages and ages ago I posted this little post here, about what I called the ’email technique’.  And here I am again, amazed by how this humble method works in my favour and wanting to share it with the world.

I write stories, I always have. But unfortunately I also suffer from absolutely crippling self doubt and most often the stories are never finished, because before the end I have convinced myself that it is so poorly written, so terrible in every way, that I’d be a fool to continue.

Others I will tell, don’t worry about the quality! Just write, if you love writing then carry on anyway. A first draft is always crappy anyway, that’s why you have the second draft and the third. So don’t worry, just write.

I can tell others but I can’t seem to tell myself. But even so I keep coming back to the computer, writing and writing and writing again. It’s been going on since I learned to write and it will probably go on until I am no more. It would however be fantastic if I actually managed to finish my stories. The dream is of course to be published but for now I’ll settle with that more humble goal – to finish a story.

So, what about the email technique?

In essence it is my way of making myself carry on, and not get caught reading and re-reading what’s already written. Yes eventually I need to edit and rewrite, but not now. Now I just need to carry on, and so this is perfect.

I write to myself. Short passages, sometimes just a sentence or two, and click send. Once it is sent (to myself still) I can leave it at that, move on with what comes next. Yes it is painstakingly slow but… is it? I’ve written far more this way, though each segment sent is tiny the process prompts me to continue, and so I end up with more than I would have if I had set out to write a page or two in one go.

Of course I cut and paste it all into a proper document as well, but not every day and I try not to actually look at it too much, it’s just a precaution to keep the entirety safe.

And with that it’s time I get on with today’s work. There is much to do so I better get on with it. But before I start I will send myself an email. Just a few sentences to keep the ball rolling.

It had never been their intention to see her permanently damaged, the teeth had been an unfortunate accident. Ellie sucked on her own and imagined them missing. The thought made her cringe. Poor girl. 

 

 

Warning: Self-Pity

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I’ll start you off with a picture of this morning’s needle. Day three of IVF attempt 2,  woop woop!

 

But now, today’s topic is not actually IVF. Last time I promised I’d write something more proper on the topic of period cramps, so here we go. Let me take you through a little story.

 

*

At the age of ten I had my first taste of this hell. I was in class when all of a sudden it felt as though lightning struck in my lower belly. I folded forward and gasped for breath, utterly terrified. With tears streaming down my face I went up to the teacher.

“Have you started having your period yet?” she whispered kindly.

I shook my head and mouthed a no. The pain was still so intense I couldn’t even stand up straight. Period cramps? No I thought, this is too bad. It can’t be it. Something must be wrong I thought, seriously wrong.

The teacher was kind. “Don’t worry,” she said. “You’re probably just getting your period.”

 

I had my first period within weeks of my eleventh birthday. The bleeding wasn’t a problem, of course it was icky and uncomfortable but still not a problem. The pain however was hell. Unable to rise or stand up straight I would just lay down, slowly rocking my hips back and forward in a desperate attempt at relieving the pain. Painkillers could take the edge off but not enough, there would be pain until I could fall asleep and escape into nothing.

 

“Don’t worry,” my mom would say. “I had these terrible cramps too. It gets much better after you have a baby.”

Somehow hearing that is no relief, not when you are a twelve year old biting into  a pencil to avoid screaming. (No, not really when you are an adult having tried to get pregnant for seven years either!)

 

Several times it got so bad that my family took me to the emergency. Gynecologists examined me over and over, and every time the result was the same. Just period cramps, some get them bad, sorry. I got stronger painkillers but they knocked me out, had me sleeping all day, so I eventually stopped taking them. I couldn’t function either way.

 

In school I was always at the top of my class. I was the study horse, only I didn’t really need to study until highschool when I attended the International Baccalaureate and studies suddenly got real. But before that? It was too simple, I could ace most tests without any work. So yes, I had good grades! But there was one thing that made the teachers unhappy – my attendance. One or two days a month I was just gone, my mom having called me in as sick, leaving me with far higher amount of sickleave than the other kids. Now this may sound silly, but you try being a 14-year old trying to explain to your male teacher that no, you’re not skipping school. You’re just curled up in a ball of pain due to cramps. They accepted it eventually but the skepticism still hurts, to this day. Of course they thought I was exaggerating.

 

This continued as a young adult. Every workplace eventually sees the awkward talk with the boss where I have to discuss menstruation. There is always skepticism. Can’t you take pills? Yes, but if they are strong enough to kill the pain they are strong enough to put me to sleep. I’ve tried, repeatedly. What does the doctor say? They say it’s just period cramps, they can’t help. Of course it sounds strange, almost every woman has period cramps after all and most work just fine. What kind of special snowflake is this girl who tries to claim she can’t work due to period cramps?

 

During the last few years the question of endometriosis has come up. It could explain the pain, if that’s what I have. There might even be treatment! I still haven’t had it checked. Am I stupid?

Yes probably. But do you know why I haven’t made the doctors look into it? I have mentioned the possibility to every gynecologist I’ve seen the past few years but they’ve always just brushed it off, but surely I could press on?

The simple explanation is I am afraid. I am afraid of hearing yet again that no sorry, it’s just period cramps. Of getting a pat on the head and being sent off feeling like a fool, like every other time I’ve gone to the hospital with hellish cramps.

Feeling like a fool is no reason to not seek medical help, I know. But this is humiliation I’ve lived with since the age of eleven, and at thirty-two it is pretty damn deeply rooted. I just know it won’t be endometriosis. I’ll get a sympathetic shake of the head and a shrug, I’m sure. As always.

 

This blog post is probably one of the worst I’ve written. So full of self-pity and stupid moaning that I am tempted to simply delete it. But no, I think I’ll leave it. Self pity and all, I’ll just put it out there. I’ll just press “publish” now before I change my mind. ARGH. Yes. Here it goes.

 

Needle Time – cycle 2 has begun (IVF)

I am so glad I’m not afraid of needles.

 

Today the IVF process started over with daily shots administered by yours truly. Hopefully this second time around will work better on all levels. I am starting on a higher dose of the hormones which hopefully will mean it won’t take quite as long to get the eggs ready, which in turn hopefully will mean better quality eggs and no overstimulation. Last time was PAINFUL and I spent days just sitting around at the hospital, being checked on every few hours. But that was last time, this time will be better! Fingers crossed, ta i trä.

 

These last few days have been emotionally rough. Very rough even. A fun combo of pms followed by intense period cramps and IVF related anxiety, wehey. Not good. I’ve even been sleeping badly, which for me is super unusual – even through my worst times of depression I’ve usually been able to sleep! But these past few days everything has been off.

 

Right now? I’m a bit fuzzy. That’s the painkillers work. Period cramps are always terrible for me and even light painkillers make my mind a bit… fuzzy. Tired. And well, any pills that are actually strong enough to kill the pain are also strong enough to put me to sleep. Working during the worst crampy days have in other words never really worked, as I am either shaking of pain or asleep. Now I hoped yesterday was the worst day but this morning is starting badly. As I am writing this I’m laying down on a couch and constantly wriggling my legs and hips – somehow the motion helps handling the pain.

 

Oh hey, this post was supposed to be about the IVF start, not about period cramps! So I better stop there. I promise I’ll get back to you on the cramps topic though! Because that is just so much fun. ^^ Isn’t it?

 

Ouch.

 

I better stop now. Wish me luck!

 

What’s the point? – Ritual Tools and Stuff

Over the years I have made, found, and bought a number of items that I would classify as ritual tools and stuff. (Yes, that’s the word I’ll use, live with it!) Some can easily pass for decorative pieces, and some may even be cheap mass produced stuff found in thousands of other homes as well. Some are more expensive, and some are hand made by me or others. It varies greatly.

I might be talking about a little bowl. Or a basket. Or a knife. Or a candle. Or a jar of dirt. Or perhaps a little figurine.

Practical tools and decorative pieces, anything and everything. What they all hold in common is that they hold meaning and purpose in my own ritual sphere. It’s not about how pretty something is, or how expensive. It’s not what anyone thinks about it. In fact I often prefer to keep these things entirely out of sight to avoid anyone having an opinion about them whatsoever. Questions leave me awkward, I still do not quite know how to speak of them. Writing is easier, so here I am.

Candles, yes I have candles. One for each deity I approach. One for the ancestors. Others for specific purposes. These are perhaps the most common, and the most scoffed at. It doesn’t matter. To me the candle is a focus to guide my mind and a symbol of intent.

Bowls, plates, cups. Practical tools I use mostly for carrying offerings. There is nothing wrong in using a regular kitchen plate for this, but for me personally having special items for this purpose is valuable. Again it is not a matter of what looks cool, it is a matter or intent. Of focus. Of what meaning I give it.

Some items were unplanned. Sometimes in a shop I will spot something that stirs my mind in a certain direction, towards a certain deity most often. If I can I might then buy it both as an offering to said deity, and as a tool in future rituals – seeing how its very existence reminds me of Her, Him, or Them it becomes a strong practical symbol.

A practical symbol, hah. Sounds weird, doesn’t it?

But symbols are to me practical. They hold meaning and I use them. Sometimes the symbolism aligns with greater cultural contexts, sometimes the symbolism is only my own. Both are important, I find.

An hourglass to be the physical representation of time.

A mirror.

A knife.

A flask.

 

My collection may seem strange but for me, every piece makes sense. Every piece has its use. Don’t mistake it for vanity, it is not about buying the cool and pretty things. Don’t mistake it for meaningless mysticism either, it is in fact very meaningful. Don’t mistake it for peer pressure, I honestly don’t give a fuck what others think of it, my own ritual tools are for me. Besides, my friends are mostly the sort to just laugh at these matters anyway.

 

A jar of ashes.

A set of runes.

A wooden staff.

 

Practical tools. Symbols in physical form. Focused intent. Meaning. That’s all.