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April 2016

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Apr. 28th, 2016

Princess

I Know What I've Signed Up For

[Location: My bedroom, Hibiscus's house, Silverstag Eco Hamlet]
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"I need to remember to tell you about the berry-picking C.S.A.," Hibiscus said.
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"You already did. I looked into it. We're going to be getting two different fruit shares from other farms," I said.
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"Oh," Hibiscus said. "I did?"
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"Yes. It's the one over at the village in town," I said. Hibiscus nodded confirmation and I went on, "I can't remember exactly what it was that made me decide against it. I think I recall it being a high price per pound considering that you had to pick them too. There is this place an hour south of Snowland that Panda introduced me to where the berries are only $1.25 per pound and they don't care if you eat berries all day while you pick, and the place is huge, and they don't spray anything. They have honey there too, from their own land, so I would often get my year's supply of local honey when we went berry picking. It was also nice how all the varieties of blueberries were mixed together and occasionally you'd find a blackberry or raspberry bush too."
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Hibiscus's eyes were closed. He was laying flat on his back in my bed. I was sitting and turned so that I was facing him. "Are you tired?" I asked. "You look asleep."
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"No," he said, his voice sounding dismal.
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"What's wrong?" I asked. He didn't respond right away, so I asked, "Is it because I'm being dismissive of the place you mentioned to me?"
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"Part of me wants to say, yes, that's exactly it, and yet, that isn't all of it," he said, opening his eyes briefly and looking at me. I waited, anxious for him to elaborate. I felt happy to be in his company, happy to talk with him, and yet now he was distressed. Surely I could easily remedy that.
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"Bodicea and I went berry picking there each year. But it doesn't matter. No place I take you to is going to be as good as the place you were just raving about," Hibiscus said. I frowned. Oh, so this is about him feeling inadequate again, I thought, thinking about last night, where that had come up in a different context. "When you looked into C.S.A. options on your own," he continued, "You came up with better solutions than my suggestions. It is better that way."
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My frown deepened. I like when you introduce me to things from your life. I like seeing where you've been and who you've been. Suddenly it felt very important to me to convince him that I wanted to go berry picking with him specifically where he had gone berry picking before.
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"We can go to the places you've gone to before for berry picking," I said.
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"We could, but then you'd bitch about how it wasn't good enough."
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Suddenly I needed more air and began sucking in more of it with each breath. "I could skip the bitching," I said, smiling at him. Underneath, I felt resentment stir. I wasn't bitching. I won't bitch. How often do I really bitch about things? It's you who is bitching. And you're not even bitching about anything that is actually happening, or likely to happen, or has happened.
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Apr. 26th, 2016

Sexy

What do I desperately wish people understood about me?

Teal challenges us to write our answer to this question: "What do I desperately wish people understood about me?"
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I like talking about sex. I think I like talking and thinking about sex as much as I like having sex. I especially enjoy it when the people I'm talking to you about it have interesting things to say, and interesting experiences that they are willing to share with me. Because of my radical acceptance of other people and their unique truth, I often get very interesting stories.
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Apr. 22nd, 2016

Me

Hibiscus's Proposal

Hibiscus said, "I'm going to change into something more comfortable."
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He came back a few minutes later wearing a bright blue button-down shirt. Those don't seem like pajamas. Does he want me to come on to him? He's smiling at me? What's that about?
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I raised my eyebrows at him. "You're looking for a reaction from me," I said. But what reaction is that? Can I finish typing this first and then find out?
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I looked back at my computer for a moment. He came toward me and then went on one knee before me. My eyes widened with realization. I pushed my wheeling desk a bit to the side so that all of my love was in view.
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I smiled at him and my heart leaped in my chest. His beautiful blue eyes stared into mine and he pulled out a wrapped box. The wrapping paper was green. I pulled it off carefully. The box inside was green. I opened it.
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Inside was a patterned ring. Smooth, without protrusions, as I'd requested. Silver in coloration, as I'd requested. Imperfect in its manufacturing, indicating that he also had followed my cost guideline.
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"Will you marry me?" he asked.
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Cry

Building New Cities with Paladin

I was on my third day of intermittent fasting and feeling rather exhausted. Light-headed, and unsure I could keep up the five-hour-eating-window, I came into Paladin's room for distraction, comfort and care.
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It was eleven-thirty on April 22nd 2016. Half an hour until I'd allow my eating window to begin and eat. My emotions were sharper and easier to access, but oh how exhausted I felt. I knew that had more to do with my continual lack of sleep than to do with the new eating pattern, and yet . . .
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"Think of our relationship like Civilization," I said, referring to the video game I had grown up on. The analogy I was about to paint would work for any "4X" strategy game. "In the beginning we just had open land for building our relationship, and a settler. We built our first city together, and the land was free of threats to our budding connection."
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As I spoke I laid beside him on his sleeping mats under his duvet. The golden-yellow cover was silky smooth and relatively new. Mermaid, or my parents, had lost the black cover to the duvet while Paladin and I were away from snowland and it had been borrowed without our permission.
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I snuggled the duvet and Paladin both. I thought back to our first year together living in Sunnyland. I thought of our very first collisions, where his temper had run out. We hadn't argued, but he had exploded two times in that year.
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"As our borders expanded, we encountered a few stray enemy units. We gathered our resources and were able to take them down. We built new cities, learning to do new things together, exploring and enjoying each other's company. Our shared dinners were a strong city in our relationship. My braiding your hair each morning before you went to work. You teaching me how to fold towels, how to take care of knives, how to shave without getting razer burn. Those were each solid cities of our relationship."
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I thought of our move from Sunnyland to Snowland in April 2011, after we'd lived together in Sunnyland for a year. "And then we moved. Any enemy city now lurked on our bordered, pushing the borders of our relationship backward." As I spoke I was visualizing the video game, imagining our blue borders being pressed back by the expanding influence of an enemy red civilization.
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"A city made up of our regrets, our hurts. A permanent city we couldn't conquer. We threw forces at it, but that took so much out of us, that at times we let it alone, letting it slowly creep in on us."
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Mar. 31st, 2016

Smile

My Definition of Success

Even if my relationship with Hibiscus ended sometime in the coming months, I knew that it would forever be an "era" in my life. It would forever be counted as a "success" in my book.
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Somewhere in January or February I'd crossed the line between, "an experiment," and a "success." I couldn't pinpoint a moment when it happened, but it was during the last week of March that I realized it had occurred.
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I told Paladin and Hibiscus as much. So what made something a success to me?
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March 31st 2016, the day I expected my parents to come visit Silverstag Eco Hamlet, (for the first time, in the case of my mother), I sat down to write about it.
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A Success Is Defined By . . .
How I'll feel about it looking back.
Which is determined by . . .
What I gained from the experience in terms of lessons, assets and memories.
In particular:
Lessons that help me understand myself better and allow for better decisions going forward.
Assets that continue to be useful day after day, year after year.
Memories that provide a strong emotional anchor, giving either lessons or pleasure or both.
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Mar. 29th, 2016

Hunched

Death Throes

Excerpt: Paladin looked aggrieved, but did it anyway. He went to leave my room without hardly having spoken a word to me. I followed him out, as I needed to pee.
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"Something is burning," I said. The stench in the hall was very obvious.
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Paladin moved slowly, like he was suspended in syrup. I couldn't understand what could be burning.
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Incredulous

Dad Being Conscious

Thursday, March 24th 2016, I wrote to my father:
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Hi Dad,
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I noticed you seemed quieter than usual this past weekend {during the workshop here at Silverstag Eco Hamlet}. I couldn't tell if that was a positive development (like you realized you wanted to listen more, or wanted to be more present with what other people were saying or doing, or like you connect with yourself more when you talk less, etc), or whether it was a negative symptom (possibly of feeling uncomfortable, guilty, sad, closed off, etc).
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Mar. 28th, 2016

Me

Outgoing Boundary Violations

Reflections on the five love languages as they pertain to writing someone a letter:
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A letter has the capacity to be a gift, quality time, or words of affection.
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It is a gift it to me if it explores aspects of who I am, and what I am.
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It is quality time if it shares who you are, what you are, or how you feel.
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It is words of affection if it praises me and makes me feel special.
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Mar. 22nd, 2016

Kinky

The Twenty Buttons Challenge

Hibiscus,
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I said, "You probably know most of my buttons."
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You said, "I know these two here," grazing your finger over my nipple.
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Those are quite nice ones, indeed. Although – have I ever told you? – they didn't used to work at all. I went through years of never letting anyone touch my nipples and being extremely upset whenever a guy did.
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While I was with Porcupine a shift began to occur. He was mystified by my dislike of my nipples being touched and he was determined to experiment and find out if there was some way he could touch them that I wouldn't be adverse to. He caused me to really focus on the sensations and feel for what I liked and didn't like about them being touched.
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Mar. 21st, 2016

Me

Hare Visits (Part 2)

Hare had arrived on Friday night and taught workshops on Saturday and Sunday. On Saturday night I stayed up late to write (part 1).
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Now Hibiscus was in the basement, working. Hare was downstairs getting ready to leave. It was Monday morning, and the sun was shining as if it really were Spring in truth.
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I walked into Paladin's room. It was my third time coming in, trying to get him up so that he could say goodbye to Hare. This time he was standing. He was by the window.
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"Hey sunshine," I said sweetly, happy to see him up.
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"Fuck," he muttered.
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"What's wrong?" I asked.
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He didn't answer. He kept looking at the window. I worried that perhaps he had broken the window in some way, but nothing seemed wrong with it from where I was standing.
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"Nothing," he said at last, walking toward me. He walked past me without touching me, saying, "Nothing is wrong."
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My heart pounded painfully. Oh, I thought. We don't have a relationship anymore. Truly.
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