Of mind & body
of mind & body
The United States citizenry is in steerage in the Titanic. The Affordable Care Act “replacement” bill (the amorphous one whose name and details keep changing) is an iceberg, and the only people getting a lifeboat from it are the .001%. The crew is actively blocking attempts to turn the ship away from the danger. Here we are, sitting in the hull, while the engineers and the company that built the ship are taking apart the ship as it’s sailing headlong into the ice. This the situation today. This is the situation in every single authoritarian country in the world. Wait. Did I just say the United States is an authoritarian country? Well, yes and no. On paper, we still have a republic. But all of its checks and balances just failed in a massive way, simultaneously, after two generations (forty years) of deliberate dismantlement. I remember the air traffic controller strikes in the 1980s. I remember the birth of HMOs and the idea that health care should be for profit. I remember Iran Contra. I remember the grass roots organization of Republican dominionists who plotted together in restaurants and convention centers to permanently keep “those people” out of power. They
ReBoot It’s time to reboot. Am I the Only One Dancing has lain dormant now for quite a while. To be frank, I’ve been in mourning since Clinton lost in November, and I’ve been in shock and dismay since Trump took office in January. While all that was happening, multiple rapid changes were also happening in my personal life. To take stock: My husband lost his old job due to physical disability and got a new, lower paying one My youngest son left for the Navy and is now doing well in Navy Nuclear A school. I have hired two new clinicians for my practice and am getting them up to speed during the slowest time of the year. I have been dealing with some significant trauma reaction of my own due to the nightly news (on every station) and social media (doesn’t matter which one) reminding me of the years when I endured physical, sexual and emotional abuse. Through all that, I was maintaining just enough energy to keep providing good therapy, maintain my marriage and friendships and (barely) keep my household afloat. The week of Independence Day was especially and unusually loud and smoky in my neighborhood this
My husband and I have an ongoing argument on the nature of gift giving. He thinks gifts should be a surprise, and I think that surprise is far less important than giving people something they really, really want. This year for Christmas, he totally got it right. He got me a Fitbit HR Charge. Well, I’d asked for the gray band, and they only had purple, but I can live with that. Yes, I know. Body positivity and all that jazz. I don’t mind being overweight in and of itself. What I mind is how uncomfortable my body feels, the bloating in my belly and skin issues where it folds. I’m also ultra paranoid about diabetes, since it runs in my family. So I wanted something that would accurately record my activity level, so I could have some idea (with the help of linking it to My Fitness Pal for the food diary) of where I’m gaining the weight. Also, bonus, I can see how active my friends are (and judging from my friends, how uncommon it is to actually reach 10,000 steps per day).
Next year in Kansas City, we will be hosting Worldcon (“we” meaning we Missourians, not me personally, as I am a minor player at best in this drama). I am thrilled and excited to finally be in a place in my life where I can participate in person instead of through my endless babblings on line. Last night I stayed up way past my bedtime to watch the Hugo Awards 2015, and I have opinions. I started to write them as a Facebook post, then decided to move them here: My more coherent (daylight) thoughts on the Hugos: The puppies got socked in the nose with a newspaper last night, and they are yipping that they meant to get socked, and besides, the Hugo isn’t so great after all and they didn’t really want it. Which is par for the course. There is so much spin in their position at this point that if they were to stop spinning there would be no there, there, at all. I have a great deal of compassion for many of these folk. They will never be able to live their support of this down, and some (many) of them will probably eventually realize how
The State of the Puppies Up to Now For those of you not familiar with the current controversy about the Hugo Award in Science Fiction, go here, here, and here to read up on what is happening. I do have skin in the game. I am a Worldcon supporting member, and I have long standing friendships and correspondences with several authors and editors and artists in science fiction. I am also a feminist, an anti-racist ally, an LGBTQ ally, and overall what the Hugo Sad Puppies would call a “SJW” (social justice warrior, meant as a pejorative when they say it). I am not going to try to diagnose anyone involved in this issue, I am only going to discuss some broad psychological principles that apply. I am trained in social work, and hold a license to practice in the state of Missouri. My “day job” is as a psychotherapist in my own practice, and I have specialized over the last ten years on issues of poverty, trauma, and personality disorders, with a lot of depression and anxiety thrown in. I have had a fascination with, and have done a lot of work with, people who abuse. The basic premise
“Questioning” (“Participating”, “Noodling”) is a regular feature of this website asking a question, inviting people to participate in an experience, positing an idea, or in some other way encouraging people to “join the dance”. I’ve done this in the past as well. I highly encourage you to pass this around to your friends and family and get the conversation started. How “the personal is political” applies to me: Unlike most of my extended family, both biological and through marriage, I am an unabashed liberal, feminist, anti-racist, pro marriage equality advocate for poverty elimination and the rule of law. My mother was probably privately pretty liberal. At the very least, she really enjoyed the company of people from diverse backgrounds and was largely accepting of other peoples’ differences. My dad appears to have never given much thought to the matter, and makes casually racist remarks about people close to him that are nothing so much as clueless.