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ARGH!

For the last time; being an introvert is not the same as being anti-social.

Introvert
I like it in here. It’s quiet and I can still drink my tea.

I am an introvert.

I am very social.

But when I’m done being social I need to lie down in a dark room for awhile.

Or at least sit on the sofa with Simon on the other side of the room while I type furiously and he plays XBox.

Introvert: Someone who needs quiet to recharge their batteries.

Extrovert: Someone who needs to be social to recharge their batteries.

So stop saying ‘I can’t be an introvert, I love being social. But then I do need to have some quiet time.’

That is an introvert you big doily!

 

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Creating Community

As I’ve pulled myself out of my winter of illness (and discontent) (Sorry. Couldn’t resist.) I’ve taken a deep breathe and looked around at my life.

And discovered that I suddenly have several groups of really good women friends.

Some of them are actually local to me, such as Adam’s friend’s mums. As was remarked upon at Sports Day last week, it really is awesome the way we all clicked at the pre-school gate. We’ve been hanging, helping, drinking, coffeeing and cheering each other and our kids on ever since.

Then there are two of my ‘left-over from Mumsnet’ local friends. One is also a client and great at giving me advice about what to wear, since she’s a fashion blogger. The other is my craft enabler who took me to buy my sewing machine a few weeks ago.

Then I have my online communities.

There is, forever and always, the hussies. We don’t talk as often as we used to, but we are still connected in various ways. And we all know if we vaugebook something? The rest will coming running to find out if we’re okay.

Then there’s a newer group, also acquired through Mumsnet, who are on a Facebook group now. We don’t talk all the time, but we are there for each other.

There’s the new group, as part of Jump! Parents. We are creating a lovely Facebook community of parents there as well. And I’m writing for the site, just as I’ve written for Jump! Mag. We have good discussions about parenting. And Ikea. And sometimes other stuff.

Finally there’s my best online friends, of which there is a group of four of us. We met on Mumsnet, carried on over at Twitter and Facebook. They are really the ones I wish lived down the street. That would be hard, as one of them lives in Greece, but we are talking about creating a commune at some point. 😀

Borrowed from http://www.dreamstime.com/stock-photos-beach-homes-blue-sky-background-image614913
Our future homes. Really.

And altogether, they make my community. Maybe I can’t ring most of them for a cup of sugar or a quick coffee meet or child pick up. But I know I can rely on them to be an ear and a cheer on the other end of the ‘net.

And sometimes? That’s really all I need.

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So, Yesterday…

Was my 46th birthday.

I’ve been struggling quite a lot with this birthday and I’m not really sure why.

I mean, I know part of it is that I’m now officially closer to 50 than 40 and 50 seems huge.

40 wasn’t huge because I was 20 weeks pregnant at the time with the baby that would become my wonderful little boy. So I was huge, but the birthday wasn’t. 😀

me and adam today and yesterday
Adam when he was the baby on the interior and yesterday when he was the boy waiting for the school bus.

 

I am, for the most part, happy and content with my life. I have a husband and son whom I love. I have more creative energy than I’ve had at any point in my history. And I enjoy what I do every day.

Yes, I’m sore. A lot. My arms ache and my legs ache and I’m tired a lot of the time. Such is life with Fibromayalgia, after all.

But I’ve been spending the time leading up to yesterday trying to figure out why it seems so huge and reflecting on my life.

And I recognize that I am not where I thought I’d be by this time in my life. I thought I’d be a published writer (well, I am, but only on the ‘net) and/or a professional theatre designer or at least fairly high up in the career that I started on at Kaiser about 20 years ago.

All of which was derailed, very firmly, by my first psychotic break at 25.

But I am, as I said, happy and content.

So why is 46 so hard?

It’s not the signs of ageing. I know I don’t look 46, for one thing. And I don’t really mind the signs that do show my age; my grey hair, my laugh and frown lines and the fact that I seem to be getting my mother’s hands, but without her lovely long thin fingers. 😀

So…why is 46 so hard?!

I have no idea…

 

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Plus la change…

This week on Agent Carter, set in 1946, Agent Peggy Carter used the excuse “girl things” with the men in her office to get a day off so she could go do agent stuff.

Today I added “girl things” to our Tesco order that I forgot to get when I was in town earlier, rather than send my husband and son to get them for me tomorrow. Not that they wouldn’t, but I’ve taken Adam with me before and it was less than fun. He’s a very curious boy, after all.

As I’ve said before; nothing really changes.

And that’s rather sad.

 

Edit, 10/1/15 – I just realized, re-reading this, that if things are to change, we need to change them. Next time I will send Adam and Simon to buy them. And answer any questions Adam has about it. Which I have done before, actually. As I always answer any and all questions from the floor.

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I’ve seen people asking this Christmas:

How did you find out Santa wasn’t real?

I never thought he was real.

Santa!

From the time I was born until my father married my Catholic step-mother when I was seven, Christmas wasn’t my holiday. My holiday was Chanukah with the eight presents stuffed into the closet in the utility room and my brother and I lighting the menorah and then picking one to open that night.

So my first Christmas was when I was 7. And as my brother and step-sister and I were trying to go to sleep, there was a lot of banging going on upstairs (my dad and his family lived in a reverse condo with the sleeping area downstairs and the living areas up-stairs) so I got out of bed and went to the bottom of the stairs and yelled up to please keep it down.

My dad’s response? “We’re putting the presents out!”

So much for Santa. 😀

I hope everyone had a lovely and peaceful holiday this year and that everyone has a fantastic 2015.

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When I was a child, I had a friend named Gail

She was my best friend in the whole world for years and years.

Gail’s house wasn’t like my house.

Her mom was always home. My mom worked.

Gail’s kitchen table always had butter on it in a pretty dish. We used margarine in a tub.

Gail had 2 sisters, one older, one younger. When we met, I just had an older brother.

Gail’s mom was crafty. My mom wasn’t.

I used to wonder at the odd things in Gail’s house. Not just the old fashion rug beaters her mom would hang on the wall,  but the tree branches that came out at Easter that had coloured hollow egg shells hanging from it and the giant pine tree that would appear in their living room every December.

Gail was Christian. We were Jewish.

But the thing that always fascinated me, was how Gail’s mom sewed. I don’t remember if she actually made all of her girls’ clothes, or if she just sewed some things, but her sewing machine was always busy. And always nearby was her pin cushion. It was shaped like a tomato and the strawberry looking thing hanging off it was crunchy when I would pinch it with my fingers.

I never asked what that squishy thing was for, just accepted that it was part of this odd object that people used to hold their pins when they sewed. And I used to sit and play with the pins and crunch the strawberry while sitting at their kitchen table chatting with Gail.

I have never forgotten Gail or her mom or her house or that pin cushion.

And today, I bought this: pincushion

In many ways I am more like Gail’s mom than mine. I am mostly a housewife with some freelance thrown in. I knit. I cook. I bake.

And now I know that the squishy crunchy strawberry on the pin cushion is for sharpening pins.

Because I own a tomato shaped pin cushion all my own. Just like I always wanted.

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Is privilege the same as advantage?

I was recently having a conversation with a good friend, who I’ll call Beth,* about the use of the word privilege and why we use it rather than the word advantage.

Beth maintains that if we used the word ‘advantage’ rather than ‘privilege’ when speaking about things like white/male privilege people wouldn’t get quite so het up about it.

Beth meant the people who have this privilege, by the way. Beth thinks the word privilege is loaded with insult and presumption due to its implication of wealth and power.

Is Beth right?

Would it matter if we said male/white advantage instead?

I do think the word privilege is more loaded because so often privilege = wealth. The privileged can have things the rest of us can’t have. And it’s very very hard to join the privileged, even if you make millions you may not be included in the ‘privileged classes’ because it’s not just wealth that creates privilege. Privilege is automatically gained through birth, skin colour, gender and other, less tangible things, that can’t be changed easily, if at all.

Advantage, though, that can be gained. Through study, through patronage, through your own gumption you can gain an advantage.

So I will never be male and attain male privilege. But I can do many many things to give me an advantage over a male. Not easily, for sure, but it’s not out of the realm of possibility.

However, the one advantage I will, mostly likely, never gain, is to become a man. I have no gender identity issues, I am a woman and I am happy being a woman. And so will remain a woman.

So male privilege is not something I can ever gain.

So should we change the word?

No.

I like the fact that those with privilege get upset when I call them on their privilege.

Now, I am aware that we change language all the time to things that won’t offend people. But there is a huge difference between changing disabelist or racist language and changing this.

Because changing this? Would just be another privilege.

*Beth told me he/she had no problem with my writing this post, but she/he did not want to be identified. I’m not even saying Beth is actually a woman, it’s just the first name that popped into my head when I started writing.

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It’s a banner day here at Tee’s Blog…

I have 5 whole followers! I love you all!

Yes, I’ve been drinking. And trying to ignore Girl with the Dragon Tattoo on the TV. I thought the book was over rated. The film is not much better. Simon is, maybe enjoying it.

Sorry. I’m suppose to be political now, right?

Well, I’m pissed as hell that Obama has said the US won’t boycott Russian Olympics. Fuck off.

I’m none too happy that parades in Belfast always end in violence these days. Fuck off.

I’m just, in general, kinda angry at the world tonight. Fuck off.

In other news, Adam’s new nose spray seems to be easing his snoring. No snoring will, hopefully, mean a better nights sleep and no adenoid removal surgery in his future. It does mean, however, that he’s harder to hear on the monitor.

I should probably get to bed.

Fuck off.

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Before I Kick Off The New Form Tee’s Blog

Let’s get a few things straight. Then you can see if you still want to be reading or if you want to run for the hills. Or maybe if you want to recommend it to your friends.

I am an American. That’s never been a secret.

I am not a Democrat. I am not a Republican. I am registered as Independent.

Why?

Because there are some things the D’s do that I like and some that I hate. There are some things the R’s do that I like and some that I despise.

I am, in reality, an anarchist at heart. I don’t actually think any government is necessary but am happy to accept whatever rules the rest of you think are necessary to keep yourselves happy. If I find I want to do something that’s against your rules? I might do it anyway and take the punishment, if any, except that I follow the 11th Commandment: Thou Shall Not Get Caught.

Anyone who has read Robert A Heinlein will know where I learned most of my beliefs. Go read Moon Is A Harsh Mistress if you want a fairly good explanation of Rational Anarchism.

Be that as it may, I do also recognize that there are over 7 billion people on this planet and therefore some rules for happy living are necessary.

However, I do not believe that any government anywhere has the right, in no particular order, to: –

  1. Tell me how to use my uterus
  2. Tell me how to raise my son, other than, of course, to treat him well which, of course, I do
  3. Tell me who to love
  4. Tell me who I can marry
  5. Tell me what I can say
  6. Tell what I can write
  7. Tell me what I can view on the internet or read in a book

Or, in a nutshell, I am a pro-choice, anti-censorship, and pro-free speech feminist.

But I am not a radical feminist. I believe in the original basis for feminism, which was choices. You want to work and have children? Go for it. You want to be subservient to a man (or a woman)? Go for it. Find what works for you and your family and be happy in it. And fuck what anyone else thinks about it.

I am also a believer in God. Oh, maybe not your god. Definitely not a Christian or a Jewish or a Muslim or any other recognized religion’s god. But I believe there is a higher power out there. Otherwise what are we doing here, apparently alone in the universe, on this big rock, if not some being’s play thing?

On the other hand, I will also be very surprised if we find definite, indisputable proof that we are alone in this universe. This whole universe, just for us? Pure arrogance to think so. I think they are watching us (and, no, I don’t need a tin foil hat, keep reading) but realize we aren’t ready for them yet. I don’t think they kidnap people for anal probes or other bullshit. But I think they are keeping an eye. We are, after all, in the scheme of the age of the universe, very small children.

And I think they’ll make themselves known when they think we are ready. I think we’re ready now and could use the help, but, as much as I hate to admit this, I’m not actually in charge of the universe so will just have to wait and see like everyone else.

I am, also, an artist. I don’t draw or paint any more, due to bad hands, but I still create. I just created art, as a matter of fact, and submitted it to a contest, using my mouse and my keyboard and Adobe CS5. I’ll post a link when it goes up. I’m fairly proud of what I’ve done.

I think that’s pretty much it. I’m happy to answer any questions in the comments or at Twitter or on my Facebook or in email.

Or you know, if you don’t like what you’re reading? Bye!