June 27th, 2003

loud fayoumis

Mental health: I don't like kids-in-the-aggregate, and don't like strangers-in-the-aggregate either.

Shared my concerns about my mental health with the Little Fayoumis's new friends with votania.

To start with, I am not very keen on children. One-on-one, for specific cases, I'm fine with kids. But this is when I've been properly introduced, and have made friends with the kid in question. A kid who is not a friend who I have to deal with for more than an hour or two will cause my stress level to rise to dangerous levels. The more kids, the worse it is. Yes, I was a babysitter, back in the day. The three neighbor girls were not only babysittees, they were friends. I told them Shawn stories, and they ate them up. (Ah, the delight of cautionary tales...) The kid of some of Mama and FatherSir's friends from back in the day -- he was a friend. He was a bright kid who loved playing chess and reading and being goofy in just the right way. When I sat for the Meeting kids, there were a lot of them, but we were on neutral ground, and they mostly knew each other, and it was only for two hours (and I was still wiped at the end of it). When I wound up baby-sitting all day for two kids I didn't know and wasn't friends with, I wound up a nervous wreck by the end, and couldn't finish the last day of the job. (Granted, That Idiot Shawn trying to kill himself with a drug overdose while I was on the phone with him was a contributing factor, but it was not good before that kicked in.)

I'm not very good with strangers and people-in-general either. When there are people visiting, after the first little bit, I will retreat quietly to my room. Select people get to follow me and spend quiet one-on-one time with me (or small multi-party conversations), but I don't like to spend extended amounts of time with the sort of people who are strangers now, especially those who will always be strangers to me, even if they are friends of the family. My soul's society is select, and I'm friendly with many more people than I'm deeply friends with. evealone can attest that under most circumstances, I would hang out in the living room for a while, then retreat back to my room and stay strictly by myself. At the Halloween party, when it was winding down, I retreated to my room with Dawn, ralmathon, and Darkside. The Bald Guy tried to join the quiet chat, but got booted because his presence stressed me out. (Darkside not only approves of me having a spine, but makes it so that I cannot be otherwise than strong in his presence.)

Now, combine these two endearing traits, and match it up with the fact that the Little Fayoumis and his friends are still in the "getting-to-know-you" stages of the friendship, and add in that the kids are over here without anyone resembling a parent/guardian keeping an eye on proceedings. I do not know how these kids behave. I do not know how these kids sound. I do not know what they sound like when they are angry, stressed, lying. In order to get an accurate view of the proceedings, I must be in the same room and have my eyes watching instead of mostly my ears.

Children who are strangers are still strangers to me, and I have to fight the lifelong urge to retreat to a quieter corner. But, in order to adequately supervise, I cannot. Dangerous impasse, as long as I am feeling obligated to allow the Little Fayoumis to have his friends over, which I am. I feel guilty when I cannot allow them to stay the whole day, and I dread being left alone with the Little Fayoumis. I don't feel as if I can tell them, "Okay, time for you to leave," arbitrarily.

The younger the kid, the worse time I have. I'm fine with the older boy, the Little Fayoumis's age, spending lots of time. It is a simpler dynamic, and the language of six-year-old boys is similar. But the little girl? Four, if that. That's below my threshold for Intelligent Life-Form, unless I've been properly introduced, which I haven't, and which I hesitate to do, as I'm a Mommy-Type Grownup.

So. Three kids, in the shakeout stages, and one of them below my threshold of Intelligent Life Form... no. That, I need backup for... and I don't have it.

It's different when the other side of the crew has a parent with. They know what the warning sounds are, and if something sounds like trouble, they'll twitch to awareness, providing me with the cues I need to react as appropriate. I know what the Little Fayoumis's warning noises are.

I would have a very difficult time if left alone with the Little Fayoumis, kids, and their parent/guardian who I did not know and with whom I felt no connection with. I have a difficult enough time with adults that I only feel a weak connection to. An adult who was doomed to remain a stranger plus kids with no backup? Ghhhhaaaaaaaaaa. It would be very different if the other kid's parent was someone I already knew, whether from experience in this life, or through some kind of innate connection. (Not everybody I connect to like that can be trusted, but it's at least not stressful dealing with them at first.)

We're going to have marxdarx go over to their place to check and see if the Little Fayoumis can go and play. We're going to see about having them play outside like the riotous small things they are. We're going to have someone else here to keep an eye on things while I become accustomed to the way they sound playing together happy, so that I won't become overloaded left alone.

We'll work it out. Somehow.
  • Current Mood
    sleepy sleepy
running, bomb tech


The thing that is to be brought up tomorrow morning is different from the thing with my sanity around the kids.
  • Current Mood
sad, greensad

Am now able to point finger on it.

The thing tonight when I called my priestess-confessor was what I fear every time I go to call her. The phone rang and rang and rang and rang, and then when I tried again, it was the voicemail. I left a none-too-coherent message. When I need to talk to somebody, I need to talk to somebody now. It takes a lot to get me to call, and when I am calling, I need to know that I will be able to connect to someone. If I am assured that someone will be there, someone will pick up the phone and give it to the person it's supposed to go to, I still fear that sometime when it's critical, no one will be there.

...The reason I fear this so deeply is because one time when it was critical, I called almost everyone I had to talk to, and no one was there. I had almost given up hope when River answered the phone. I am glad he did. I am glad I am here writing this.

Some people fear calling when they know someone will pick up the phone. I fear calling when someone should pick up the phone, but doesn't... I will cling to the illusion that if I had called, someone would have been there, and keep that illusion by not calling for as long as I can. I'm used to leaving messages for Darkside, and I'm used to him calling back if it's critical, because he knows my voice, and his parents know my voice, and I so rarely request that he please please definitely call back; I usually invite that he could call back if he so pleased.

It's a fear of abandonment. If I put my trust in people, then they could fail me at a critical moment. They could leave. That's not good for someone who outsources bits of her sanity...

So I left a message, and waited until I knew Darkside would be home. I called, then, and conveyed to my beloved best friend that I was in the middle of a happy fun panic attack...
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    sleepy sleepy
trust, best friends forever, snot-nosed brats

Darkside vs. Panic Attack: Darkside ∞; Panic Attack 50.

Due to Darkside's guardedness about his own worries, I've taken to guarding my own from him as well. I put the situation to him simply: panic attack, and I was needing a shoulder that I trusted briefly.

He got somewhat clipped and forceful with me, and managed to extract an accounting of things. I'd only been intending to ask him to give me virtual hugs and allow me to remain near him while I worked out things myself, but he tugged in the right places, and I told him stuff, and he did his usual thing. (This did include the amusing proposal to drive Shawn insane near to the point of death, Pretender-style...) I told him everything, near enough. What was stressing me out, and why it was stressing me, including Shawn, including why I'm reluctant to let my emotions go here... I could feel him with me at every word. He cares.

It just helps to tell someone these things, sometime. I've been, lately, without that...
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running, bomb tech

Ahhh, memories: Fuel-Air Bombs & Talented AcaDeca Yeeth

Thanks to an interesting package warning of vidicon's [don't think the post is locked, but if it is, my bad, but it shouldn't be, I don't think], I recall the Academic Decathlon State competition.

Ahhh, those good old days.

There were several of us, the best and brightest from our school. We were staying at a large hotel in Anchorage, and somehow, no one had put "Thou Shalt Not Play With Fire" in our rules. (Thou Shalt Not Throw Things Out Windows, yes... not fire.)

But, anyway.

Nine to twelve of the brightest and best of West Valley High School's brightest and best, left pretty much to their own devices. Someone, I think Ruby, got incense. So, we-the-girls were playing with the incense, trailing the smoke through the air, idly singeing the edges of papers.

We had already discovered the individual, one-serving coffee makers, and were in raptures over them. "Awww, how cute! MY COFFEE! GIVE ME MY COFFEE!!"

No one had much use for the powdered non-dairy creamer... no one, that is, until someone must have remembered their early training in the fine art of fuel-air bombs, and got a Brilliant Idea. To the bathroom we repaired, with two rooms' worth of finely-powdered non-dairy creamer and a lighter.

Open packet. Pour finely-divided powdered non-dairy creamer into the air of the bathtub. Light. WHUMP. Ooooh, shiny flames-in-the-air! Let's try another!

We had to call room service for more coffee kits.

There was debate about whether or not to throw fireballs out the windows, as that would not be having anything go down to ground-level (the toothpaste incident was fresh in our minds as a cautionary tale), but wiser minds prevailed. We did have fun in the bathtub, though.

The Awards Banquet rolled around, and we were, not surprisingly, among the schools who were mopping up. It was really down to two schools, in the end -- the ones who had a dedicated class to AcaDeca, and us, who did it after school in our free time. They won, but we made a good showing.

There were candles in the table centrepieces, and I eyed them. My teammates looked at me with that combination of understanding/interest/horror/anticipation that so many people learn to get around my father. The "She's not really going to do that, is she?" look. The "Should I run screaming now, or wait to see what happens?" look. I looked at the middle of the table, and saw that the creamer was the nice kind, the liquid kind in little plastic cups with the sealed foil lid.

I asked a passing waiter if they possibly had any powdered non-dairy creamer. I got The Looks from my teammates. The adult chaparones were oblivious, as no one had clued them in on what we'd been doing with the small explosions in the bathtub. We quietly agreed that we would use the fireballs to add into our applause, which had been limited to some tame beanie-spinning, with the usual clapping, hooting, and hollering.

Sadly, when I sprinkled the creamer, it was not fine enough, and sat there in the candle. Ms. McKinny noticed this, and was confused. No one enlightened her.
running, bomb tech

Day Plans

Pick up room
Finish The Gates of Sleep (it looks to be a Sleeping Beauty story)
Visit the Temple of Consumer Electronics
More pies?
More toffee?
Coffee toffee?
pretty, Francine

Happy Loony.

Good book (Yes, Az, by her), caffeinated toffee, and an unspoken promise from self-and-the-universe for more good things to come today.

Perhaps it's time to go work out within the hour.
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    content content
silly, bunny ears

Secure webpage Quotes:

"Your session is being initiated."

Into what? *giggle* Is it a Secret High Master now?
  • Current Mood
    silly silly
running, bomb tech

He's worried about me? He can't possibly be worried about me.

But I guess he is.

Only the slight shading of voice, the extra firmness on, "And learn to take care of yourself", told me so. But he is. He must be. He can't be.

But, though I'd swear to him in sickness or health, strength or weakness, he sees the weakest side of me. He rarely does get to see me in full glory of my strength. He just sees the pieces and patches them back together with a prayer that maybe they'll stick this time.

And he worries.

And instead of petting and encouraging my weakness as those who desired to see me weak might do, he kicks my ass, hauls me up by the scruff of the neck, and makes it clear to me that my only acceptable solution is to become strong and whole as quickly as possible, and he won't hear of anything else. But he does it gently enough so that I don't dread it, so that I'll show him my broken places.

And when there are no broken places left, he's made it abundantly clear that he delights in my strength and my joy. He used to make a game out of making me smile if I looked sober for any reason. He'd say things to me until he got a grin out of me, at which point his face would light up. I watched for that. Sometimes when I thought he needed cheering up, I coaxed him to make me smile, just for seeing that answering beam of sunlight.
  • Current Mood
    loved loved
documentation, writing, quill


This post has the singular honor of being the first thing to ever make me gum-spew.

The gum flew out of my mouth and onto the screen.

I thought I was the only one who thought it sounded like one of those.
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    shocked shocked
pretty, Francine

Working out...

Betook myself to the weight room, and did things with arms, and then spent 8 minutes and 2.1 miles on the exercise bike.

Now, shall take a dust-free bath, then preen and head out to ogle electronics.
  • Current Mood
    satisfied satisfied
pretty, Francine

Electronics (good girl, bad girl, strong girl)

Hopped the bus to Fry's Electronics. Wandered around. They seem to be short on Handspring Visors, which was unfortunate for me and fortunate for my financial state.

Looked at keyboards. Looked at keyboard trays to attach under desks. Looked at speakers. Gazed wistfully at shiny monitors and uninterruptable power supplies. Kept my mouth firmly shut with my tongue and its up to three feet of drool carefully inside while looking at motherboards and cases and hard drives. N% wants so badly to build a computer of our very own.

Was wandering about when I saw the sale on floor lamps. Glee! Grabbed two and walked, a little awkwardly, over to the registers to check out. Inquired after bags. Evidently the wussy little normal grocery-sized sacks was all that they had. I tut-tutted, and proceeded out to the bus stop, with impeccable timing, juggling both 6-kilo 6" x 12.5" x 22.5" boxes, just as the bus arrived.

Smiled sunnily at the proseletizers (Christian, teenage, male, clean-cut, brand-name sportswear-clad) at the Metro bus stop while declining the offer of the flyer they were handing out. Was not N%'s cross visible enough? Perhaps my star was too visible. Oh, and the head-to-toe black. That might have contributed. Caught the 90 home.

Hiked home with the boxes, being careful to evade the drunken argument converging around the pay phones on the infamous corner of "The Hooker on the Corner by the Phones". Saw jedi_rezboy headed the opposite direction when I got nearer home.

Even 12 kilos can get a little heavy after a while of carrying them. It was good to get home...
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    relaxed relaxed