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[personal profile] gallimaufryma
 I'm utterly and completely gobsmacked.  Or maybe that's just exhaustion.  Probably the latter.
Today [this was written on Saturday and Sunday] was full of new-ness.  Life is ever changing, but when the just-noticeable-difference happens for major life trajectories, it's…hmmm,….  surreal?  Big. Huge. Sigh.  It's a two cup of coffee Sunday.
Josh came over Friday evening.  Later that night he was dealing with a health issue that would see him lose his shit for reasons totally out of his control.  I really felt for the kid.  The best part?  After all the sticky muck we've been through where we've never been able to resolve anything in the end….just frayed ends of an old electric cord, randomly and intermittently zapped…after all of that, there was resolution!  I wish it hadn't happened, because he is dealing with a fair bit of physical pain that I don't wish on him.  However, I'm glad we were able to have a really good parent/child relationship.  He needed me, I was there.  No question.  Also, in spite of everything (he doesn't live with me anymore), he still comes to me when he has a concern.  Phew. AND, this time I had resources to help him (paid for an Rx he would have had to forgo in the past). As always, spending a couple days with him reminds me it is still best for him to spend the vast majority of his living at his dad's.  I think he's getting uncomfortable there and would like to break free.  Discomfort is a necessary part of growth it seems. 
In the midst of Josh's stuff...
...Saturday I met with a friend/fellow student (getting an interdisciplinary  PhD @UBC) and went over the first pass I took at a proposal for the women's health class I'm taking.  It wasn't fleshed out, thought through or edited.  I feel like it was a brave act for me to share that.  I don't like to be new to a process and I particularly dislike sharing my process at this stage.  But I'm really re-learning a lot of information right now and unlearning and learning and….levelling up, others have called it.  Anyway, as I do the research for my WS paper, It's incredibly interesting to be reflexive about my own positionality.  In spite of childhood trauma (which is the great leveller in the voice of doom narrative of teen parents in case you didn't know; the probable topic for my WS paper).  On Sunday morning I am able to lie in my new bed, with my new apple computer after spending the night at my partners house in Vancouver after we were comped tickets to Amanda Palmer show at the Commodore.  I'm able to lie here in my own, truly affordable, housing and lament about how hard my life has been until now.  But I have an "until now"   And just like that, I'm out of poverty (at least as long as I'm in school/complete the program).  Funny thing is, I am probably still technically living under the poverty line.  But I have so many financial resources at the moment.  The most important is a genius financial manager! :)
It is an incredibly strange experience, seeing life change.  I had a similar feeling when I obtained my bachelor's degree.  I grew up in a middle class home in a red county of a blue state in the US.  I became a mother and a University student, on my own and away from my parents, who were supportive, but 5 hours away.  In spite of living on the settlement of a personal injury lawsuit (*ahem*) for those years, I was slogging through some mighty deep social and developmental issues (including raising a child with an undiagnosed, hard-to-understand invisible challenges, which thrust me into a much different position of privilege than when I was in living with my parents.  Whiteness and socioeconomic class made it easier for me to traverse the social network.  I knew the language.  It was strange to do class.  I was acutely aware of it much of the time.  It was a strange and lonely world because I did not have all that many avenues for discussing these issues.  When I graduated from UMD and the night and day difference in my life was…this.  Freedom.  Choice.  Privilege.  Not as much as some, and vastly more than many others.  But so much more than I'd experienced before.  I got mad.  I felt guilty as well.  I jumped through hoops for 4 years and was all of a sudden bestowed a bunch of social privilege that, in my mind, I didn't deserve.  And also, angry that the same dignity and respect I was experiencing was not shared with everyone.  
"Oh Abby, you've got to take credit for your intelligence and hard work!"  I am smart, and let's be honest about the systems of oppression and my privilege to move between places in the world does make my life….easier?  My liberation requires me to continue doing imperfect social justice.  I'm finding my voice.  I'm learning accountability.  (Why yes, I was listening to Vikki Reynold's again).
I don't want to be blasé about my privilege and let this quote (family of origin) derail the truth of the power dynamic saying, "Pish posh, dahling dear!  Let's just drink tea and eat our crumpets and not make a difference to the world as long as our ass is seated on a nice cushy chair in an air conditioned cushy car preferably in our nice cushy garage."  That way I don't have to talk about being a survivor of violence.  It's a hard tow.  But telling someone, "Life is good for you, just relax! (ie. drop the rock)"  is NOT the way for me to do this life.  In the BFW classes I mentored I would say all the time, "Whats the difference between saying 'Release' and 'Relax?'  Many would utter, "Relax!"  in that way that just makes you want to SHUDDER.  "Calm down.  Just relax."  No thanks.  I'm not sure how to release this in a new way, again.  Maybe I need to attend counselling.  That's always a shit show of distraction anyway ;) and I know how I love procrastination, especially of the navel-gazing variety.  On the other hand I think I'm just at a place where emotionally regulated acknowledgment is there more often than not.  

Wow, I can still hear the fear of the system in that.  Doing mental health.  "I'm emotionally regulated and here's how."  Oh dear.
Back to Saturday again:
Tonight as I walked out onto the deck outside of my life-partner's house, the moon was aglow just above the roofs of the houses across the alley.  I was arriving home from the Amanda Palmer and the Grand Theft Orchestra show.  Meh show.  Fun parts.  Saw and connected with great people.  Decided to try out for the Vagina Monologues @ UBC on V Day.  Yes…good night.  But the moon! She was full and so bright.  Aha!  Full moons are special to me and have ben since I was a girl growing up on Ottertail Lake in Minnesota.  The constant reminder of a  cycle.  I love when I see her phases, but I love when she surprises me.  Just there and "HELLO *warm smile*"  Ooooohhhhhh, right!  
I dropped Karen at the airport at 5:30am this morning and thought I'd go back to sleep.  Too much to think about and too many rabbit holes to explore ;)
I'm trying to suss out what I'm doing for the paper for my Women's Health course.  This was part of my procrastination or process.



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