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Pride in Seattle

I think I would have had more fun at Pride if we had been better prepared. We couldn't find sunscreen! The convenience store didn't have any. We thought we'd be okay, though, since it was cloudy and we were in the shade of trees and buildings and we weren't out all that long. But we both burned. I was absolutely miserable that night and the next day, also from aching muscles and stiffness. I had to sleep it off, really, with a wet cloth on my face. I'm mostly better today, though. Still sore and stiff. We did a lot of walking. We had missed a lot of the parade because we got going later than planned, and we could hardly see through the crowd, but it was a good parade.  I had an upset tummy and Elk sort of did too, so we left the festival early. We had met up with this lesbian couple that we met on FB who also moved here recently and we wanted to talk to them and get to know them at the festival but the crowd was packed together and it was too loud to talk much, and I went in the fountain with one of them (it was sooo cold but fun) and then they were looking for their other friend and we had to go, so they asked us to meet them later at the lesbian bar called The Wildrose, where there was going to be an after-party. Now, the after-parties in Boise were really fun for us. They had more drag shows, comedians, costume contests, that sort of thing, and places people could sit and talk, nonalcoholic drinks, snacks, etc. This one was not really our thing, which was okay.  It got us out and doing something different and in new scenery, and the people watching was the best.  While we waited to go in, some adorable gay boys came over and asked us to sign petitions for various things and asked about our move to Seattle and stuff (which just made us miss our Idaho friends more!). I think the couple we're trying to befriend were disappointed that we didn't want to dance, and it was freezing outside (they closed up the bar! We had thought we'd be able to go in!) and we were in tank tops and tee shirts, and we didn't know anyone else there, and the music was blaring so loud you couldn't think (much less talk) and there were only a few horribly-slanted tiny chairs to sit in and dirty beer-covered tables, and everyone else just wanted to drink and dance anyway. We are pretty shy about dancing, me esp since I gained weight and my arthritis makes me not be able to move well and I look funny, and Elk is just really self-conscious, plus it was the kind of music that doesn't inspire either of us to dance. It was entertaining, for a while, at least.  The girl singing or lip synching was pretty good.  The bits we caught were pretty funny to us, stuff like, "Her pussy was a feminist" and such, LOL...  If they played the kind of music I can dance to, and I wasn't already so sore, it might have been a different story. Plus it was still really light out and I prefer a setting like the Balcony, where it's a bit darker so if you look goofy, people are less likely to see it. :P We wanted to go to have a chance to talk to them and get to know them better, and maybe meet more people, but it just didn't work out that way. Then after they got more beer and tried to convince us to dance again, they went back into the crowd and we talked for a moment about what to do, then tried to follow them, but this big huge guy crashed into me and crushed my foot and scraped it up (and didn't even notice! This seems to happen a lot to me...) and we went all over looking for them to tell them we needed to go, and couldn't find them, so I texted them and explained and apologized and we waited at the spot we had last seen them for about twenty more minutes, Elk freezing all the while, and they didn't come looking for us and didn't text back, so we left, and when we got home, we wrote an email to them explaining and apologizing and assuring them we weren't ditching them, and asking them to go out for coffee later, and they still haven't responded to either the text or email. :( We talked about it a lot and we know we probably kinda scared them off...we are not very "normal" or mainstream. We are more coffee shop book nerds. We need to join the university group to find people more like us, who like activism and discussion and conversation. We're planning to go to the Pagan GLBT group's next meetup. I'm very nervous. We tried not to be upset by our Pride experiences...but it echoed so much of our sort of painful experiences from the past. It sort of made us feel like losers. Not just the not-fitting-in to the after-party, but not fitting in with other queer people in general.  We have both had a lot of bad experiences trying to interact with the young gay community in the past, and have had a lot of rejection from them.  A lot of lesbians especially have been nasty to us.  We often distrust other lesbians because of this, yet we also simultaneously crave friendship with other lesbians and want to be a part of things.  We only really know a handful of other lesbians that we get along with.  I have high hopes for one in particular.  She has been very patient.  We also have high hopes for some of the people from the university group, whom we added on FB.  They seem like they would "get" us.  It would be wonderful if they do.  We know in our minds we're not losers.  It's not logical, but the feeling is there anyway. I always feel so left out and not-belonging with other lesbians. Always have. That's why I don't have many lesbian friends. A lot of lesbians don't believe I'm a lesbian or just don't accept me or like me much. I'm not like them. I'm not sure what or who I'm like. It would be so much more fun with close friends that we can laugh with at Pride. Elk and I felt out of place.  Good friends, like Zach,  make things instantly easier and more fun. We kept seeing things he'd like, too. They had Mardi Gras type beads with Coke pendants, I really wanted to get one for him, but we couldn't get very close to the parade and could just barely see it so we didn't get any prizes or anything. I found a string of beads afterward but I don't know what the pendant is advertising. Anyway, next year maybe we can go to a Pride festival together. Boise or Seattle or whatever.
Well, last night we were feeling pretty horrible and kinda stressed about school and money and rent and stuff and feeling down about the friend situation, and we both cried a bit. It was painful but I think it helped to cry.  At least a little.  Social interaction should not be so stressful on people. It doesn't seem normal. But we were tired and felt bad.  I still feel pretty down. I've been feeling down lately, already. Sometimes I feel like people pressure me to do more than I feel like I can handle, and I'm just frustrated with my life and myself. I feel fat and gross and ugly, and being around other young lesbians drives that home, I know that sounds stupid but it does. Some of the lesbians in Boise (even before I gained weight) treated me like a disgusting thing no one would ever want. Untouchable. And not really a lesbian, either. It's hard because a part of me really likes being around GLBTQ people and craves their company, yet I never feel like I belong. A lot of my former friends from Boise don't seem to like me anymore, either, and don't talk to me.  I guess I can't blame them.  I stopped talking to everyone for a while when I went to Louisiana and got really sick. We didn't have internet or a phone for a while and I couldn't get out of bed much and was too depressed and stressed to communicate anyway. So now some people don't want to see me or anything. I tried explaining but some people seem to have taken it personally and act like I betrayed them. :/ Some of them stopped really talking to me when they heard we were leaving Boise. :( I know that I shouldn't let it get to me and that it shows that they weren't really good friends, but it seems to be a pattern in my life. You have no idea how grateful I am for those of you who still give a damn about me. ♥ You are enough to make up for a thousand friends. :D But we still need some social interaction while we're living in Seattle, and we want to feel like we belong to some group or community at least a little bit. I hope the university group or Pagan group will be okay. We have been too separated from other gay people for too long. It was so different to be among them.  Refreshing.
Sometimes I feel like just giving up on being social or having friends other than the few good friends who haven't given up on me. I shouldn't let things hurt but they do. ;_; Sorry. I'm over it now. All fine. :P
Mood swings, LOL.
I dreamed about having a baby again. And finding really beautiful polished natural gemstones in glacial ice. That's from watching travel shows, LOL!
I know things will get better. I just feel isolated a lot and incapable a lot the way things are right now.
On a funny note, this dude we passed on the sidewalk on our way to the Wildrose made a comment to Elk as we walked by, about me: "Oh, yeah, you got yourself a good girl there, Boy, she's blushed!"  LMAO!  I had a sunburn like a lobster.  Blushed?!?  I will never forget that.

Unseen Academicals...

I'm not entirely sure why, but the woodblock design on this journal reminds me of...  "Oh ho!  The megapode!"  LMAO!

My three wishes- a true story.

The dream carried me to a cave in a rock mesa within a jewel-toned rain forest. In the cave were three people I knew but could not name, waiting in happy anticipation to show me something wonderful. They pulled me in, crowded around me, hugging me and calling me kind names, as familiar as best friends. In the far corner of the chamber waited a stunningly beautiful spirit- a genie, I knew instantly. He was large and tall, gleamingly-muscled, bald, and had such dark skin and eyes that they glowed. He had a calm and pleasant but very serious air about him. He looked young but was timelessly ancient. He wore infinity in his aura. He was dressed all in gold, but not the cheesy overly-bright gold of movies, a rich gold invoking the Goddess Oshun. He neither acknowledged nor ignored me. He was part of the surroundings.
My friends who wished to share his magic with me were trying to persuade me to make my traditional three wishes, one for each phase of the Goddess/triple moon. I am wary of wishes, and told them so. In the stories we are warned about them. They come with a price. They aren't always what you hope they will be. They work out in an unpleasant way. They are risky. Even as I said it, I knew that I was repeating societal conditioning, feeling and fearing exactly as the Patriarchy wants us to. Those stories, as my friends told me, are recent in human history. We cannot trust anything because we are told constantly that we cannot simply be innocent and trust. That is the true loss of innocence in humanity. We are so afraid of the world that we can't even accept a simple gift. The genie is not evil, he is from the Goddess, his power is from the Goddess, how could he do anything harmful to you? Look at him, you can see that he is full of crackling lightening power, which is why people fear him, but look in his face and eyes...he will not hurt you. You are as worthy and deserving of this gift as the Goddess who created him. So I approached him.
Calling me a child of Earth and stars, he told me to declare my first wish. I was thinking hard, remembering all the times I had wished for things, remembering childhood, and not wanting to waste a wish or come up with something too selfish. I wanted to find a wish that would help others. I wanted to pass the gift on to those I love.
I finally decided my first wish was to be fully able and capable to do anything positive that I tried to do. I reasoned that if I had this gift, I would be able to do everything I needed to help myself and then be able to help others.
It was granted instantly, with a feeling of energy rushing into me, a download from the cosmos.
He nodded. I took it that he approved of this wish. He likely had to endure many selfish and ignorant wishes from people who thought they owned him.
I thought wildly for my second wish.
I picked one that I have often wished throughout my life: the ability to heal anything, illness or wound or imbalance, for any person or creature that needs healing. It was granted. I felt wonderful. My friends were holding their breath in the background while I wished, giggling quietly as my wishes were granted, and practically dancing in excitement about the whole thing.
And for my third wish...what would be a wise wish? What would enable me even more during this life and in lives to come? What could help me and others find peace and happiness and fulfillment?
Perfect wisdom. I wished to be completely and perfectly wise. I was not afraid to wish this as I had been before. I knew that my soul, brain, and body could hold all of this magic and would not be overloaded. I knew I was designed to hold all of the magic in existence. Only the belief that we are not worthy or cannot hold all of the wisdom can prevent us from being able to do so.
And instantly...with a huge rush of feeling...I knew...that I had already known. I had already had these wishes granted before I ever could even think to wish them. These abilities were there all along. I could have tapped into them whenever I wanted. And I knew that I also had already known that. All along, all I had to do was remember. All of the information has always been there for me. All of the power...all of the ability. It *is* me. It's us.
My friends were giggling uncontrollably in the background now. I asked them why, though I too was laughing at myself and my wishes and newly renewed knowledge. They told me they had known what I would wish all along. They knew what I would realize at the end, too. If I had wished the last wish first, I would not have needed the first two wishes, I would have realized I already had these gifts. They had all done the same (more or less). We had all arrived at the same understanding, anyway.
Even the genie laughed lightly with us. We were laughing in celebration. We laughed until tears ran from our eyes. Feeling grateful, I asked the genie if I could do something to help him, something to make him happy as he had made us. You already have, he told me...you already have. Knowing he was my kin, I hugged him tight like a child would. I didn't know you could hug a genie...but you can hug anything. He told me to be free as he was free. I told him I hoped he would be able to help many more people like this. My friends pulled me gently, talking and laughing, to the edge of the cave, hugging me goodbye for now, and then I was out in the sunlight and greenness and then I was flying in a blur toward home, my body. I woke up. Then I woke up again.
So I had a dream a while back that was about my friend, Zach. Me, Elk, Zach's family, and a few other people were going to something like a fancy wedding reception or something. It was all formal. There was a wine bar and we were getting glasses of wine. Then the scene changed and it became like the fantasy scene towards the end of the first "Fantasia" Disney movie with all the fawns and centaurs, but with even more magical creatures like unicorns and fairies and all sorts of stuff. Zachie darling became Zacchus Bacchus, the Gay God of Wine (and frivolity). We were all dancing and laughing and having fun and drinking magical rainbow wine that never made you sick or too drunk, just buzzed, and you could drink all you wanted (we were gulping it down like H2O, LOL!) and it was actually good for you, and better than any wine on Earth. Zacchus Bacchus had all these little gay fawns dancing around him and waiting on him, too. He was the master of the party, LOL! It was a fun dream. :D

Winged

I DO have wings.  Just not physical ones that all other people can see and that allow my human body to physically fly. 

Handfasting

Handfasting is basically an ancient European Pagan tradition akin to marriage, but not exactly the same. It's sort of a commitment ceremony. Any combination of adults can be handfasted to each other if they freely choose to be. (Paganism originated in matriarchal Goddess society and therefore tolerance has always been a part of true Paganism. Only Patriarchal groups out of touch with the Goddess/Mother Earth are intolerant. They don't know what they're doing, anyway. The "highest"/original magic is in the experience of being female- and yes, males can experience that- after all our spirits are both and neither- and in the ability/experience of being able to menstruate and give birth and be intuitive and creative and sensual as women naturally are.)
Handfasting isn't taken lightly, but it is recognized that the participants may choose to be handparted if things don't work out. If things DO seem to be working out after about a year or so (some people say a year and a day) of living together and getting to know each other better, many times they will have a sort of commitment renewal/sealing of the deal (which often is incorporated into an esbat or sabbat celebration and often isn't as big an event as the first) or get officially married (which can be as big or small an event as they desire). Since we couldn't get legally married, we wanted to wait on marriage until we can do so legally. We still basically consider ourselves married and use the term "wife" for each other, but that's just our choice, largely having to do with our feelings about our relationship and our beliefs about homophobia and how to fight homophobia.
There are many variations on the ritual itself. Almost all include symbolic acts of loosely tying the hands of the lovers together with red cord and having the lovers jump over a broom (often decorated with rosemary) laying on the ground together at the end of the ritual, symbolizing the passage into a new phase of life together. I may type up our ritual later (if Elk doesn't mind), if you are curious about what it's like. I've also led handfastings for other people and each time we use a basic ritual adapted by them to their own needs and beliefs, which always turns out to be very beautiful and personal.
I'll give you some links, too, though I haven't read through all of the stuff, so I'm not sure how good they are (but they look okay):
http://www.handfasting.info/
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Handfasting
http://www.religioustolerance.org/mar_hand.htm

A dream from about two months ago...

So I had this rather funny dream a while back, about these "gnomes" (as I called them in the dream) who were almost certainly based on the Nac Mac Feegle of Discworld, LMAO!
They had picked me to learn an ancient magic called Earth Moving and become the next Earth Mover...basically it was a kind of telekinesis involving the ability to rearrange parts of the Earth, like hills and rocks and whatnot- with Her permission, of course, and only for Her own good. It was what had been used to create things like Stonehenge, back when it was safer for it to be a more common gift. They had not taught a new Earth Mover for a really long time. I was very excited about it, needless to say, especially because I have always felt a strong connection to the standing stones. It felt fitting for me. Even other people have noticed my empathy with the elementals. The "gnomes" seemed to think I would need the skill soon for something major...and I got the feeling it had something to do with coastline or similar problems. Something to do with saving people and other life from destruction.
There was traditionally a sort of "payment" that was made to the teachers, it was kind of part of the magic. An exchange of energies. They didn't want to demand much. They liked human breakfast foods a lot and so that was their request- that I cook them (the two representatives sent to fetch me) a small breakfast involving sausage and toast with butter and jam. No problem. I thought it was cute, really. :)
We were traveling toward wherever they planned to teach me, and so Elk and I had a hotel room. It had a small kitchenette, so I cooked breakfast there. I planned to put together a large plate of food to take the gnomes. I was very grateful to them.
As I was cooking, I felt that weird psychic "ping" on my head that told me to pay attention. I tuned in and found that the government, not wanting me to be taught this skill, not wanting anyone (except maybe their own agent/s) to acquire the skill, and definitely not wanting the gnomes to have any influence in the world, had sent a metaphysically-trained spy to make sure the gnomes didn't get their food when I delivered it. She was hiding under my bed. I could feel her there, trying to guess what I was doing, trying to get in my head. She was not allowed. In my dealings with what I call the government in my dreams, they have pathetic half-assed training and understanding of metaphysics. Who could expect them to really get it when they don't acknowledge at least half of it even to themselves. They're just out to usurp it anyway. So they aren't really much of a challenge, though they think they're bad ass. They're more of an annoyance, really. I knew from experience that they wouldn't come out and confront me or do anything to make themselves known, they are too chicken...they would rather hang around and then wait til I leave to undo what I did. Maybe they know deep down that I could metaphysically kick their asses if it came to it. :P
I cooked an extra plate of food. I slid it under the bed and said, "Good morning! You may leave through the door, or window if you prefer, once you have finished!" I could feel her astonishment. She hadn't made a sound and I couldn't see her with my human eyes. I got the feeling this one was brighter than most of their agents and might come to the true metaphysics once she got a clue. Here's hoping. :D
I was still concerned the government would try some trick, so I turned the real food for the gnomes temporarily into rocks and turned some dirt from a planter into temporarily artificial (but real looking and smelling) food. I put the rocks in my pocket and the dirt on the plate. I left the room to meet up with Elk downstairs and find the gnomes outside. Maybe I made the fake food too convincing. It made people's mouths water and eyes glaze over hopefully as I passed...in fact, they almost would start to follow me, sniffing the trail of yummy smell in the air. It was rather cartoonish. :/ I cooled it down to create less scent. That seemed to help a bit.
On my way to the stairs and elevators, I passed some people who were there for a funeral. They were mourning a young man only slightly older than me. He had died of a sudden illness or organ failure of some kind, they were all a bit in shock still. Some men were arguing loudly over something...one of them accused another of having somehow caused (or failed to prevent) the young man's death. I could hear and see the spirit of the young man trying to yell at them to cut it out. He was very upset by their behavior and was adamant that it was no one's fault. I knew better, but I too felt mad that they were scapegoating the man's friend, so I let him talk through me. Never a good idea. Not that he himself would disrespect me, but the reactions of the living are sometimes scary. At first a couple of the men started getting mad at me, thinking I was some nutty false prophet taking advantage of the people's grief. Then I let the young man provide them with details I couldn't have known. I saw as the crowd of faces registered that I really was in contact with him. Ohhhhh shitty, I thought...RUN!!!
(Why oh why did I do that? That was stupid. I have to get to the gnomes or they'll think I'm not accepting their offer! They might leave!)
And they were, oh yes they were, coming after me. All at once. Wanting to talk to their precious boy. I was afraid the stampede would trample me and ruin the breakfast I was carrying. It was starting to go back to its original form a little bit, too. Not much time.
It's not that I didn't want to help the people. Just that they were a little crazy at first. Let them calm down.
I dove into an elevator that was almost closed and pushed buttons. I went down several floors and got out. Some of the people were already there. Don't ask me how...
Soooo...I knew I should just face them. Fastest way to get them to move out of the way of the front door. I answered a few questions. Mostly they felt guilty and the young man reassured them. They wanted to know if he was okay. They wanted to know if he blamed them. They wanted to know if he loved them and if he would still be able to see when they had their big game and when the baby was born and so on...and he let them know that he would. And he was happy and wanted them to be happy. He was there to try and get them to stop feeling so guilty. They asked, "Do you love me?" and "Do you love me too?" and a couple of gay men asked him, "Do you even love us? We weren't sure when you were alive but we really want you to love us." I let him say through me, "Wellllll...you two are pretty fruity! But yeah, I love you. I just gotta tease you...that's how you should know I love you." I thought that part was kinda funny, coming from my mouth. :) They seemed much happier, and seemed to realize that he hadn't meant the teasing in a bad way when he was in-the-body, and had actually cared for them all along. Elk had showed up as some of the people dissipated and she helped me explain about the spiritual world to some very confused teens and a couple of adults who were having a hard time reconciling their religious teachings to the spiritual reality they had just experienced...go figure. It was satisfying, though. She is very good at that.
It's wonderful to see their inner eyes start to open and their minds expand.
Finally, I could go meet the gnomes. The dirt was almost dirt again upon close inspection. It was still breakfast-shaped enough to fool an agent, though. We walked out the front doors.
Darn it all, but wouldn't that be when I would wake up?! :/
I know it's not over, though.

Moon Lodge and Lunaception

Moon Lodge is an old tradition in a lot of different Pagan native cultures around the world, left over from the matriarchal Goddess-worshiping days...most notably Native American and Pacific Island cultures. Basically, it's a retreat of peace and comfort for women to hang out in while they are menstrual, where they just relax and meditate and be spiritual/magical, and don't have to do heavy work, and leave the kids with their dads...at least, that's how it started out. Of course, the Patriarchy made it a mandatory place to put those awful uncontrollable women when they're too gross to be around men and no use to men. :/ But it's a tradition that a lot of feminists, Pagans, and native cultures are reclaiming in honor of the Goddess and sacred menstruation. It also has ceremonial/symbolic uses for men who wish to gain wisdom/experience of their inner feminine through experiencing what it is like to menstruate and be able to create with the body the way women do, which is the original "high magic" or sorcery. Of course, the Patriarchy made that a way for men to usurp power, and twisted it into crazy things like cutting their thighs to simulate menstruation and so on. Elk could tell you a lot about it. Sacred menstruation and Goddess culture vs. Patriarchy are major interests for both of us and she has made a study of it.
Generally speaking, though, women in our natural state, and in tune with nature's cycles, would menstruate at the new moon (hence "blood moon" and negative associations in modern lore, sacred associations in ancient lore) and would ovulate at the full moon. There are actually studies on how light affects hormones and women can use these patterns as a type of family planning tool called Lunaception. Pretty darn awesome, huh? :D
Part of the reason my hormones got messed up in the first place is that I had such bad insomnia I was staying up all night every night for a long time and it screwed with my light/dark balance and stressed my glands and made my endocrine system shut down. I know lately I've been not being very careful about not exposing myself to too much nighttime light/late nights. It's gonna get better though, now that I'm on my thyroid pills again, I should stop having insomnia.
The moon and her phases affect everything, so much more than people tend to realize. There's a huge reason ancient magic and festivals and rituals happened on full and new moons. Without the moon and her effect on gravity, life as we know it could not exist on Earth. All of that extra energy from the full moon is a gift to be used for creativity and sexuality and vision and magic. People don't have that knowledge and positive outlet for it anymore and go a little haywire and start acting like lemmings overdosed on antifreeze, robbing and killing and going nuts...it's sad.

Wooziness

This morning, I was killing the aphids on the pineapple sage, and got really dizzy/nauseated/funky feeling all of a sudden...so weird, I've never been squeamish like that before. It's not in my mind, either, it was like my body reacted without my permission, LOL! I guess I'm more sensitive now! Maybe it's the meds I'm taking...? WEIRD.

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