Sunday, September 27, 2009

Question of the Day

Fellow teachers and anyone else who brings work home with them: What helps you work at home? I need to clean house and I know that would help, but I don't have a ton of time for that. I will do that in the near future. I am going out to work at the moment but I can't do that every time, because money is tight right now with the new computer and my loans and all that. I think I will go to Starbucks because if I go to the nice gay-friendly coffeehouse with good hummus, I will spend more money, and I don't think they're open long on Sundays.

I am going to plan 2 days worth of lessons and then go back to sleep.

Mental health update, if anyone cares: I'm off Risperdal due to the weight gain, and on Abilify. It is making me a zombie. I can only hope this is temporary. But the voices are better. Well, not voices. I don't hallucinate, but the racing thoughts and inner commentary. It's another anti-psychotic, the only one that won't cause weight gain. Even the anticonvulsants used for bipolar cause weight gain. We'll see how this goes. I'm in a depression now and I want to swing out of it so badly. I prefer hypomania to depression even though it's a weird feeling. I'm seeing my doctor again in a week and a couple days, and we will re-evaluate.

Time to go plan lessons. Somewhere else. Taking a bunch of crap with me: Syracuse Community-Referenced Curriculum Guide, Moderate and Severe Disabilities (both textbooks), the LifeSkills guide for this district, and my notebook I am using until there is absolutely no white space left in it.

All day workshop Wednesday: means I get to rant and share stories with my best teacher buddy from another school!

Friday, September 25, 2009


I fucking hate euphemisms.

Use words. We are adults.

Breasts are breasts. I hate the word tits. I can hardly type it. Call them breasts. Not "celestial orbs" like I just heard, not funbags, not jugs, not anything like that. I can handle boobs. But that's about it.

It's called sex. There are a few terms I would use, but they do not include: doing the horizontal mambo and yes people use this, banging, nailing, and I even had an ex call it playing doctor.

To each her own. But if you want to get any with me, use real words.

Monday, September 21, 2009


Turns out I do know what to write about. I was lying in bed, trying a new relaxation technique I learned in therapy today. I'm on Risperdal, which is an anti-psychotic. It's pretty common these days, especially in children (don't get me on my high horse about heavy duty meds in children). I think I might be ready for the next dose. I'm getting more tense again. I'm not psychotic really, just a little bit. Thought disorder generally means schizophrenia and speech patterns, but in me, he talks about it in terms of my thought trains. They don't match up. My thoughts are totally disorganized and I get flustered so easily trying to think things through. I don't always get reality and I misinterpret things. That's low level psychosis. I don't hallucinate, I'm pretty firmly grounded in what I see and hear, but my thoughts don't take the normal pathways so an anti-psychotic could help.

Why am I so open about this? I don't know how NOT to be. And this is a safe space for me. I need someone to read about this, or if nothing else, I need a place where I can write about it.

So on to the problem, which is why I am writing.

When I was a teen, I started to hate praying because I could hear voices coming right back at me. I never regarded this as anything, and never answered yes when doctors asked me if I heard voices. I knew it was myself and not some outside entity, including God. It's annoying to hear yourself answer right away. I wanted God to answer and I was pretty sure answers to prayers didn't work that way, especially when the answers sounded like things I could have thought of on my own.

How does this apply to tonight? As I was trying said relaxation technique, I couldn't shut up the inner commentary and motion. The exercise was to imagine three dimensional numbers, one by one, 1-10. I was doing that, and as I silently reminded myself to do them one by one (in therapy I tried to imagine them in a line and the line got too long!), I could visualize the other numbers coming up and running away. And then the commentary would start, telling the numbers to just go back and wait their turn.

Now, I know the numbers cannot hear me. I am grounded in reality tonight! And everyone talks to themselves, right? At least sometimes. What do we do on blogs some of the time? But for me, I can't turn off the commentary. It's like I'm narrating a movie of my life and it is ANNOYING. I can't relax when my mind is going like that. I can't sleep.

My mind is going and I thought maybe if I could narrate myself into my blog, perhaps my mind would shut the fuck up so I could go to bed. Can you imagine how annoying this is? I can't concentrate!

I see my doctor in the morning. The other reason I'm writing is to remind myself to tell her these things. I just sent an email to my school email of all the things I need to bring up. I'm taking the afternoon off for this appointment because she doesn't do late appointments. Sigh. Oh well. Not like I'll actually be using my sick days as sick days. I can't afford to be gone whole days! My class goes nuts.

PS- Keep scrolling and look at my photo post.

Picture post

Nothing much to say right now. Job is getting better with that kid, still confused about orientation, but whatever. Just wanted to post some pictures. I'll write more another time.

I like this. I'm in my classroom while my kids are in gym and I like the out of focus. And the way you can see my purple hair.

After a particularly bad day with my unholy terror.

On the way back from Purdue visiting my brother.

On the way TO Purdue, I insisted we pull over.

My brother. He's pretty awesome

Just feeling the urge to get naked in pictures that day.

Caramel apples with the parents.

On the way to school. LOVE this.

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Honest Scrap

Tagged by the suave, articulate, and now Dr. Leo MacCool! I subscribe to more than 10 blogs but here are a random 10 for you to read.

There are three rules for this award:

First, link back to the person who gave you the award.

Next, give the award to ten other bloggers:

1. Don't let's talk, who is honest in her own very charming way and whose blog you simply have to read
2. Butchtastic, who is unapologetic and honest and delightfully butch.
3. Freedomgirl, who wrote me the fateful email that discussed femme and helped me get more comfortable in my own femme
4. Namaste by Day, whose outlook towards her job sounds so much like my own that it's scary (and who understands what I say about mine!)
5.Vixen Kitten, who is beautifully open about her sexuality
6. Mina, who inspired me to delve into my submissiveness
7. Green Eyed Girl, who likes to use pictures to express her honest self
8. Amelia, who is honest even when it hurts
9. Sinclair, who started my whole gender inquiry in the first place
10. Alphafemme, who honestly explores the various ways for her to express her femme

10 Honest Things

1. I have borderline personality disorder. It makes every little comment, cancellation of plans, tip that I have something on my face, etc. seem like they hate me and want to leave me. Seriously. It's hell.
2. I loved my Hitachi, and now I hate it. But I have yet to find something that really feels good.
3. It is going to absolutely kill me to teach the 5th grade Sunday school class about the sacrament of marriage. I might pass most of that one off to my co-teacher. I treat this as teaching doctrine, not what I necessarily believe (even though I am Catholic) but it will bother me anyway.
4. It weirds me out to have cats following me into the bathroom. I won't have it. I won't even undress if they're looking at me.
5. Too much of me is tied to my best friend and if they move the way her husband says they will someday, I will fall to pieces and no one will be around to pick them up.
6. I have very few other *real* friends in real life. Most either think I'm weird and don't like me, or I end up leaving them because their conservative views make me uncomfortable with myself.
7. Once I had a dream that I slept with a coworker who was my support staff person last year. After that I couldn't look him in the eye for a while. It didn't help that he smelled good and was all friendsy with me (he always was and that used to be fine). AWKWARD.
8. I don't dress up properly for school because I won't wear stretchy dress pants, silky pants, blouses, or heels (I'll only wear heels to a bar). I'm a little autistic. If I wear those fabrics, I am so uncomfortable and out of sorts all day I can't concentrate. So I have great empathy for my kids with autism who need to jump/chew on something/wear only cotton/etc.
9. I have to end a flight of stairs on the right foot. I count to myself and if I think I'll end on the left I take two at a time to get it right.
10. I'm perpetually afraid that someone will come take away my labels about gender and sexuality. I'm so confused and still exploring and I want community and I want support. But as a bisexual, even though I really call myself gay because I like the word better, sometimes lesbians hate on me. The straight world, too, because they don;t think it's for real. The fake ones are called "barsexuals." :) Anyway. I subscribe to so many gender/sexuality/queer blogs just so I don't feel so alone.

Friday, September 18, 2009

Invisible Illness

1. The illnesses I live with are: bipolar disorder type 2, borderline personality disorder, provisional diagnosis of intermittent explosive disorder

2. I was diagnosed with it in the year: 2009

3. But I had symptoms since: Childhood signs of some BPD, but mostly since age 17, on first 2 counts

4. The biggest adjustment I’ve had to make is: learning to distance myself from difficult situations and people, times where it would trigger rage or severe fear of abandonment

5. Most people assume: that I'm just not sucking it up enough, or that I just have a bad attitude and I'm seeing reality all wrong (guess what...this IS my reality).

6. The hardest part about mornings are: waking up while on an antopsychotic. makes me so sleepy.

7. My favorite medical TV show is: House

8. A gadget I couldn’t live without is: Laptop

9. The hardest part about nights are: calming down my nerves which give my stomach the butterflies feeling, which is much easier on the Risperdal

10. Each day I take _2_ pills & vitamins. I cut out my other stuff, this may change starting Tuesday when I see the doctor again. 2 isn't bad. Risperdal and a B complex.

11. Regarding alternative treatments I: think they can be helpful but I'm not willing to go off all medications due to the symptoms of the disorders

12. If I had to choose between an invisible illness or visible I would choose: Visible, just non psychiatric. People with psychiatric diagnoses often get told they're lazy, whiny, etc. They aren't "real" disorders.

13. Regarding working and career: Sometimes I need to stop the obsessive cycle of thoughts that is making me anxious, and I take Xanax mostly at work to calm myself down.

14. People would be surprised to know: I can only control so much, and some of my actions are truly beyond my control.

15. The hardest thing to accept about my new reality has been: That medication doesn't help BPD too involves learning effective coping skills. Shoot. No easy answer there.

16. Something I never thought I could do with my illness that I did was: be a good teacher.

17. The commercials about my illness: make it seem so cut and dry.

18. Something I really miss doing since I was diagnosed is: Nothing, because most of these symptoms have been present for as long as I can remember.

19. It was really hard to have to give up: nothing.

20. A new hobby I have taken up since my diagnosis is: meditating with more purpose

21. If I could have one day of feeling normal again I would: say what I need to say when I need to say it without the fear of that person abandoning me forever

22. My illness has taught me: that our bodies are imperfect and so are medications

23. Want to know a secret? One thing people say that gets under my skin is: telling me that I'm just seeing it wrong, and I need to have a better attitude.

24. But I love it when people: ask me what I need, how they can help, and ask me to explain myself so that they can understand more, and don't judge me when I answer honestly.

25. My favorite motto, scripture, quote that gets me through tough times is: "Your silence will not protect you." I know I need to speak up and advocate for myself.

26. When someone is diagnosed I’d like to tell them: that there is hope, but nothing is perfect.

27. Something that has surprised me about living with an illness is: the side effects of medication can be so crazy.

28. The nicest thing someone did for me when I wasn’t feeling well was: BFF agreeing to have child-free time with me once a week.

29. I’m involved with Invisible Illness Week because: I have recently been diagnosed with invisible illnesses.

30. The fact that you read this list makes me feel: grateful for people who don't just write me off as a crazy unstable confused-about-religion/sexuality/life person

Sunday, September 13, 2009

OK, so if I'm not straight, I'm....

What the hell am I? I've always vehemently denied being lesbian because I can name some men to whom I am attracted, and at least for one time in August, had intense attraction to a man with whom I later had sort of consensual sex (he was whiny and pushy and sort of maneuvered himself in and I decided to let him continue to shut him up). So that right there invalidates my lesbian status. But see, here's what I've been thinking about lately. When I scope out new people, it's only women. Only rarely do I notice a hot guy. I'm more confident around women, and my relationships with Cat and Tiffany felt so blissfully normal, conversation wise. We just talked and I felt more natural. But I was telling myself that was because they were less threatening, as women, so therefore that was a case for me being straight.

And as for sex, I've only slept with one person, and that was an all around bad experience once it involved me doing any touching of any of the important areas, but maybe that has more to do with the trauma in the past. I feel like I can't be a lesbian because I WAS abused, and then it will feed the myth that all lesbians have been abused. But I can't lie and say it didn't affect my relationships. The actual sex, the act of penetration, I have no issues with that specifically, so that didn't turn me off when I was with The Creep. That was the only part that was any good because I didn't have to look at it or touch it. Again, maybe an abuse thing, maybe not. Strapons don't seem to have the same disgusted reaction with me. When I slept with Cat and Holly, I remember being sad that I couldn't really feel their arousal like you can with a man when you press up against him, but that was really the only thing I missed. Partly because it was a symbol of their attraction, and it also just created friction. So in the sex area, it's not clear either.

I don't know who I am. I don't know who will attract me with a real attraction. I do know I'm happy calling myself femme, and that I'm happy with my standard outfits of tanks and cargo pants. So hey, I'm at least clear on something!

Monday, September 7, 2009

Unholy TERROR.

I don't want to go back to school. It's a bad feeling. I've felt so great so far and now there's this new kid. First of all, I'm not supposed to have kindergartners. Secondly, he's mean and will probably end up with a label of ED. I'm not convinced he's really in the best placement right now, even though he's mine in the AM and with the autism RR in the PM even though he isn't really autistic, she's just doing a special reading thing in the afternoon. The para who followed him and is turning out to be a 1:1 from the RR coddles him. He has what looks to be a behavior disorder (as opposed to an emotional one). He's manipulative. He shouldn't get comforting hugs for being a jerk to me and throwing things at me. He knows what he's doing, he feels no remose, and doesn't care about pretty much anything. "I don't care" is one of his standard answers. So I have to go talk to my principal and see what we can do. This other teacher is great and is always on the same page with me. Her way of dealing with him is the same as mine would be, but nothing like what this one para does. I want to do a lot more ignoring than she is. We'll have to have a discussion.

Also, why the hell doesn't he have a behavior plan? Sigh. You know, it's just the adult thing. The three of us in there can deal with unholy terrors. They've gotten good at that. My Alex used to knock desks over and throw food on the ground when he was mad at them. When I babysat him as a little kid he would pull my hair and bite and kick. It's having the extra adult in there who isn't with us, and who thinks she's God's gift to troubled kids. I understand some kids need that nurturing, but he isn't one of them. So I'm off to speak with my principal in the morning. I'm scared because she used to be a lifeskills teacher and so she'll expect nothing but the best from me, and she WILL know what that looks like, or thereabouts. I want her advice, but I also want to do something about this para. Either make her go back to the other teacher's room, send another para entirely, or leave the kid with us. We can handle it. And we'll do it our way.
I'm going to ask nicely now. If you are a real life friend, please please PLEASE do not read this. I suppose if you've found it once, I can't stop you, but I would hope that you would respect my wishes. I would just feel awfully betrayed if private things went to the wrong people. I feel much safer with my online friends knowing this. Besides, sometimes I have things I need to say about my friends and want opinions from other people. I have so few friends in the area I really rely on all of you to hear me out.

Sunday, September 6, 2009

Evil Plan Generator

Congratulations on being the creator of a new

Evil Plan (tm)!

Your objective is simple: World Domination.

Your motive is a little bit more complex: Sadistic pleasure

Stage One

To begin your plan, you must first seduce a wealthy heiress. This will cause the world to whisper among themselves, stunned by your arrival. Who is this threat to our children? Where did they come from? And why do they look so good in classic black?

Stage Two

Next, you must vaporize the white house. This will all be done from a haunted woods, a mysterious place of unrivaled dark glory. Upon seeing this, the world will fall into catatonic trances, as countless hordes of mean english teachers hasten to do your every bidding.

Stage Three

Finally, you must reveal to the world your unholy weapon, bringing about an end to sanity. Your name shall become synonymous with sheer dementedness, and no man will ever again dare steal your woman. Everyone will bow before your dashing good looks, and the world will have no choice but to grant you three maidens of virtue true.

Make your own evil plan here.

Friday, September 4, 2009

On Autism

Years ago, at the beginning of my special ed degree sometime in sophomore year, I got very upset reading websites of autistic people who were insistent that they wanted everyone to leave their autism alone, be called autistic instead of "having autism" and were generally bitter towards people, special ed teachers especially. So I emailed my dad frantically, thinking I was doing everything wrong, even though I thought I was doing it the right way with my accommodations and modifications and person first language. This was his response (and it was wonderful, especially coming from someone with only third hand knowledge of autism):

You are not studying to put square pegs in round holes. Use a different analogy. Think of the world as the block that contains the round hole. This hole works for many kids. That doesn't mean that that's the only portal into the world. You are looking for another way to engage the autistic child with the world. It may be a hole of another shape that no one sees because the round hole worked fine for most kids. It may be another part of the block that is more malleable
and will adapt to different shaped pegs. In severe cases maybe engagement isn't possible so you look for ways to touch the block without entering into it giving you contact without engagement. Maybe you try to change the world to accept the square peg. These are ways to find the optimum fit for each child. This is a noble goal and a noble profession (and a good mission!).