Sunday Confessions April 9, 2017




I Confes: Watching Forensic Files makes me feel smart. :) 

I Confess: Still no job, but still looking.

I Confess: I've been reading young adult books (not even thought-provoking or challenging ones) in the bathtub and before bed. They are super easy, super quick, require almost zero brain power, I can get in and get (of the book) without being any transition time or re-reading of pages or "oh yeah, that's what was happening" and they are fun. (Example: the book version of I Know What You Did Last Summer.)






Film Friday: Resident Evil: Extinction

source/imdb



RE: Extinction starts (5) years after the events of Apocalypse.  We are again gifted with the Alice Narration Intro which recaps the events of the previous 2 films. During this introduction, we learn that (apparently) the T-Virus hasn't just destroyed mankind; the entire earth itself has been turned into a desert wasteland - rivers & lakes have dried up, forests have withered and died. The world is not a vampire, the world is a desert. 

{My first question is... why? I would get it if the film took place in a location that normally would have lots of forest or water but they needed to film in the desert for cost and decided to jam that in for explanation. 
But the movie takes place in the desert. Like, the setting IS IN THE DESERT. You don't have to try to explain the sand, Paul W.S. Anderson. We get why there is sand.}

But ok. Whatever. Moving on. We know Alice still has her psionic powers because the movie says so. We are again given a brief intro of all our non-Alice main characters, supporting characters, and obvious dead meat on legs. 
Back for round 2 is Carlos and LJ from the previous film. Yay! 
And...our main supporting protagonist - ladies and gentleman, it's Claire Redfield! Yay! And who will be our Claire Redfield? 
She's fought evil houses, death itself, and even had her own fitness empire. . . .Ali Larter who is now running a convoy for survivors of the zombie apocalypse. 

Alice eventually hooks up with the convoy and Carlos is all expostionally "Hey, why'd you split years ago?" and she gives him the "It's not you, it's me; I'm being tracked by an evil corporation," speech.
Aww, pointless love story. 

Dr. Isaacs (minor villain from Apocalypse), has taken over and is lead villain in Extinction. He has created hundreds of clones of Project Alice and, under the "supervision" of Albert Wesker (via hologram) ostensibly been using these clones to figure out how Alice's blood bonded with the T-Virus so he can create a "sort-of cure" and domesticate the existing zombies. It doesn't go well: 


LOL, Dr. Isaacs, you so crazy. 


The failed experiment does give him a new idea though - if we make super zombies and unleash a bunch of them on Super Psionic Alice and bring her in so we can experiment on Original Alice blood. (The xerox Alice's just aren't cutting the mustard, lol.)

And while the convoy and Alice battle the super zombies, this happens. (Dammit, LJ, don't you remember anything? - Sigh. Every zombie film has that one asshole who is a bite-hider. Although I do think that AFTER FIVE YEARS, the people in the convoy should have recognized the signs of infection before he was able to turn. But whatever. Logic is applying less and less.)

So the movie is essentially them moving throughout the desert as a group, fighting zombies and birds along the way, losing people, and deciding they must have a goal, and that goal is going to be Arcadia, a small town in Alaska that is by all accounts, isolated and infection-free. Score!
So, after sending Claire and company off on a helicopter to the haven Arcadia, Alice breaks into another one of Umbrella's secret underground facilities to get a bit of revenge on Dr. Isaacs and anyone else she might be mad at.

Inside the secret facility, Alice meets the White Queen who is, essentially the "good" version of little girl AI. Le sigh. And the White Queen is like "yeah, you can totally cure the T-Virus now that you're here, except. . . one small problem."

Small problem.

Yeah, "small problem" being Dr. Isaacs has gone full mad scientist and has turned himself into a Tyrant.
Boss battle ensues and of course, Alice is eventually victorious, after telling off the good doctor when he makes a whole "I am the future of the world, I am indestructible," speech and she's like "Nope, actually, you're just another asshole."
Right on, sister.
But Alice isn't alone. She is saved by one of her clones, and they announce that they (and all the Alice clones) are coming for Albert Wesker and all the Umbrella cronies.

And that's where we end this installment. While the original was silly and an actual analysis of it would reveal SO MUCH WRONG, it is at least straightforward and coherent.
Number 2, Apocalypse, is ridiculous but at least kinda fun, and while there are 8 million continuity errors and plot holes, it's an enjoyable enough popcorn/background movie.
Extinction finishes off the primary plot that has been driving the first few movies and moves on to start following a new main plot line - the Albert Wesker is evil line. It takes itself too seriously, but not seriously enough to be unintentionally funny.
There are some enjoyable bits and pieces, but they are few and far between. If choosing to watch this movie, it's definitely funnier if you've been imbibing (something, anything), and have your "this shit is funny" hat on.

Ties to the game: Claire Redfield is one of the two playable characters in the Resident Evil 2 game. Tyrant (in various forms) is a common boss creature faced in the games.  I am honestly not sure beyond that. If there are others, they are fairly subtle.

D

Heads Up:  Violence, blood, gore, language, monsters.







Sunday Confessions: April 2, 2017



I Confess: I am frustrated and grumpy and everything sucks. I had to leave my job as prep cook because my shoulder injury became "literally can't lift my arm" and I haven't been able to find anything new yet, despite applying at several places. Fuck fuck fuck. I feel like every time things start to improve a little, they fall back a lot.


I Confess: I am at that point in my menstrual cycle (3, 4 days until start) when it's like "Give me all the food!" (Also: it is not lost on me that PMS contributes majorly to my attitude and emotions. I mean, life does suck, but PMS is like making it all bold, italic, and highlighted.)











Film Friday: Resident Evil: Apocalypse

source/imdb
(As previously stated, in order to do a proper review and breakdown of this series, there are going to be some spoilers.) 

So Apocalypse starts off right where the original ended. The credits intro is Alice rehashing the plot of the first movie via video screen, Cut To:  It's a hot summer day, and life is calm and perfect in Raccoon City.



* * *

 Then it's time for intros to the new non-Alice main characters:
source

LJ




We also meet our further supporting cast, villains, and obvious dead meat characters.

The story line of RE 2 is pretty straightforward:

The Hive has been reopened and the Raccoon City outbreak has happened. Raccoon City is (evidently) sealed off (I don't actually know how, it just is), except for Raven's Gate Bridge. Eventually our puppet master villain, Major Cain, says "screw this, lock everyone in," - but wait! - Dr. Ashford (who, in this movie is the creator of the T-Virus), wants to get his daughter, Angie, out of lockdown city for obvious reasons.
[Note: Not only do they have the zombies and other monsters running around, but the city is set to be destroyed at sun up.]

So Dr. Ashford does the movie version of hacking and uses the magic of [the government is spying on you] and (get this - payphones, lol), to get in touch with people (our main characters) still inside the city and the rest of the movie is essentially an escort mission with an added bonus boss creature. You see, Major Cain wants to see Celebrity Death Match: T-Virus Edition, and has unleashed the Nemesis to hunt down Alice and any STARS members during said escort mission.



Shit happens, fight scenes with club music on meth happen. Our characters have their limited (but occasionally fun) development and exactly how stupid are you? moments.




Eventually the final showdown between Alice and the Nemesis happens, (they even bring in stadium lights - fun for the whole family!) Cain gets his, and our heroes escape (only to crash in the Arklay Mountains, no less).
Alice is back in the Umbrella Labs of Evil and is essentially a toddler, both physically and mentally. But she is gaining her physical and mental strength back at "a geometric rate." Which makes Dr. Isaacs happy. He's all, "Hey, do you remember anything? Do you remember who you are?"
And 30 seconds of screen time/"geometric rate" growth, she's like "Yeah, I'm Alice, and you're the fucker who has been experimenting on me and also created the Nemesis Project." She is understandably upset.

There is an escape and we learn she now has telekinetic powers.

Not, however, the intelligence and foresight to actually - you know - kill the doctor.


So now she's "Program Alice." She has evolved from Security Chief Normal Human Alice to Super Alice and at the end of movie 2, she is now "Super-Duper Alice." 

Plot holes abound and there are continuity errors, but again, the movie is straightforward and fun enough. It's super light and full of action, a good on in the background/nothing else on/home sick from work pick. It's not a smart movie by any means; if you played a drinking game pointing all the laughable points, you'd be in a coma by the end. But again . . . fun.

Ties to the game:
Several nods. Nemesis is a direct character. Dr. Ashford is sort of a combination of all of the RE Canon (games, books) doctors who are credited with various parts of the creation of the T-Virus, one of them being a Dr. Ashford. His daughter, Angie Ashford, is somewhat of a comparison to the little girl in the game RE 2, who is also the daughter of an Umbrella scientist.
Jill Valentine is obvious, being one of the two primary playable characters in the original game, references to STARS members and some of the supporting, i.e., dead meat characters, are also supporting characters throughout the game.
Apocalypse is kind of a combination of the games RE 2 & 3, but by no means a faithful adaptation.

C

Heads Up: Violence, Blood, Gore, Language, Monsters



Film Friday: Resident Evil (1)

imdb/source
NOTE: 
In order to faithfully break down and review each of these movies, there are going to be spoilers as I discuss plot. If you are desperately in need of not having anything spoiled for you, you'll have to skip the Resident Evil Reviews series.

The first in the series, Resident Evil is easily the best of the group. That doesn't mean it's good. Totally popcorn worthy, the plot is straightforward: there is a viral outbreak in some sort of corporate lab, the AI computer monitoring the place says: "seal shit off and no one gets out, because we just can't risk it." So the building is sealed and everyone dies. 
Thank you for saving humanity from the T-Virus, AI computer. 

And then we a bunch of commandos lead Milla Jovovich (Alice), who is evidently the head of security for the Umbrella Corporation, (but suffering from memory loss), down into The Hive. They open it up because they want to know what happened. 
And this stupidity is why we have a movie. 
Rain, played by Michelle Rodriguez, even states it: 



So, the AI that watches over everything down here decided everyone needed to die and the whole thing should be shut up against possible intruders? Sounds like "containment" to me. 
But I get it. 
They had to know. They had to make sure The Red Queen wasn't just acting up. So they sent a team in. OK. We'll let this go. 
And so they keep exploring The Hive, in search of answers. 


Oh, her defenses are up, you say? She's making it difficult, you say? 
Maybe there's a reason for that. Maybe there was a whole containment plan in case of outbreak. 

The team forces their way through. Bad things with lasers happen.

But eventually they make heir way through the hallway of death into the main room, aka, The Red Queen's Chamber."  They really want to turn her off and back on again, because it works with phones and laptops, right?
She tries to stop them.



OK, creepiest representation of AI ever, but sometimes you should listen to the horrifying blood red little girl hologram when she says "don't do that." 
{Spoiler alert: they don't listen.} 


And then things proceed to get worse. Whoops, probably shouldn't have shut down the power system that was keeping everything sealed, i.e., keeping all the killer monsters contained.

To be fair, that was the team's first objective.

They do suffer from being super low on the zombie-killing learning curve. The first zombie attacks at 38:59, and it's not until 58:17 - a full twenty minutes of screen time! - that they realize "oh, gee, you have to shoot them in the head." (Also? They didn't discover this themselves, they had to be straight up told.)

Welp. Now they know what to do. Our group of hero commandos spends the rest of film trying to get back out of The Hive before the big doors seal themselves forever and nothing can get out - ever.
(Personally, I am in favor of the nothing ever getting out plan, but I'm on Team Red Queen, not Team Dip Shits.)
Much running around ensues, there is some blood, some unrealistic Jovovich ass-kicking, and for sub plot we have the mystery of who the inside contacts were and also, can we trust that one guy?
It's not brain food. (LOL, Brain Food.)

PS: Michelle Rodriguez doesn't make it. :( 

So, shit happens and because there are six total movies featuring Milla Jovovich in the center, I don't feel like I'm spoiling anything by saying she and one other dude, Matt, make it out alive. Scientists and more commandos descend onto them and the lead guy is all: "Sedate that chick, I want to do science on her and she is being annoying. And for funsies, let's put that Matt guy into the The Nemesis Program. Also, open up The Hive, baby, 'cuz I want to know what the plot of this movie was."

And we end on Alice waking up 28 Days Later style in a hospital room wearing only a gown and with part of her head shaved. When she makes it to the street, she sees that opening The Hive was actually a bad idea, and surely enough, there has been a massive outbreak Raccoon City.
The End.

This movie isn't the smartest of films, and the beginning sequence of Alice walking around The Mansion is slow (I almost always fast forward that), but overall it's a decent enough, fun flick for fans of zombies and horror. It's not brilliant or deep, and nuance is nonexistent, but it does what it's meant to do, it doesn't pretend to be something it's not.

Ties to the game:
Almost none. The Mansion, we can imagine, is probably meant as the tiniest of shout-outs to The Mansion from the original Resident Evil Playstation game. And The Nemesis is a character from the 3rd in the game series, so having Matt "put into The Nemesis program" is another. Other than that, there really are none.

B-

Heads Up: Blood, Gore, Language, Monsters, Violence









Life Lessons From a Mini Panther

 1.) Natural Light is (Generally) a Girl's Best Friend


2.) It is Important to Stretch


3.) Take Care of Yourself


4.) Enjoy the Beauty That Life Does Offer


5.) And Play Hard


6.) Life Will Always Get Overwhelming at Some Point, 
and it's Perfectly Okay - and Even Necessary - to Just Take
a Break and Hide Out.


7.) It is Okay to Be Angry Sometimes.
You Don't Always Have to Be Little Miss Pleasant 
Just to Please Others.


8.) But Ultimately, Everyone Needs to Learn to Compromise.


9.) Help Others When You Can, 


10.) Even if All You Can Do is a Hug and a Cuddle.

Sunday Confessions March 19, 2017



I Confess: I am not working today. My stomach is twelve different types of messed the hell up. Note: macaroni & cheese is now on the permanent no-go list. I've been tracking how I feel physically after eating and looking at my tracker, virtually every time I have eaten mac & cheese in the past few months, I have gotten a headache and/or sick to my stomach. You wanted to know this, didn't you? 

I Confess: I was so thrilled with the Becky character from Finding Dory that I ordered a tee shirt with her on it from Amazon. According to tracking, it will be here sometime late next month. (Made in China.) 

source


I Confess: It is taking me forever to get through The Bazaar of Bad Dreams. I'm about three stories from finished, but I feel like I've been reading this since puberty.





Film Friday: Rings


source/imdb


Guys, Rings is awful.
As in, this is the worst movie I'm reviewing since starting Film Friday. It's a special type of bad. 
The Ring, I think we can all agree, was awesome. (71% rating on Rotten Tomatoes, which I think is a bit low, but not terrible.)  The Ring Two is stupid and tends to drag until the awkward do-the-rules-still-actually-apply? ending, but it's enjoyable. It has a 20% Rotten Tomatoes rating, and that's about accurate. But what The Ring Two has that this film doesn't is the laughability factor. Watching it, I chuckle to myself, thinking "you dumb shit." Ha ha, lol.

And then this movie with its 6% Rotten Tomatoes rating happened.
Oi.

There are a lot of failures within this movie, but I'm going to focus on the main ones.

1.) The opening scene is utterly superfluous, and the minor scene that connects the jammed-in opening sequence to the rest of the film is lazy and expositional at best. I can just see a group of asshat producers and/or writers  - (a total of 6 writing credits on this piece of shit, folks. Six. One for the original Ringu dude, two are for "story by" and three are for "screenplay by") - sitting in a room saying "You know what would look really cool? If this happened. . . " And then it was like "we absolutely must find a way to ram this sequence in, so make it happen. Also? It did not look cool, it looked dumb.

2.) Our "heroes" are just the worst.  Matilda Anna Ingrid Lutz {oi} and Alex Roe  appear to have attended the Kristen Stewart school of acting. Their characters, Julia and Holt, are...to put it lightly, criminally boring, and while the script doesn't give them much to work with, they don't bring much of anything, either.
Let me put it this way: there is a scene which involves a telephone pole and both of our "heroes" are on-screen the entire time. I realized after the scene was done that I had been paying attention to the telephone pole; it was more interesting.
Guys, I've got to be perfectly honest: I've seen better performances out of cheese.

source

3.) ALSO: Holt and Julia are the dumbest characters I have seen in a horror movie since I Know What You Did Last Summer - and those characters were epic on the stupidity scale. Everybody is familiar with the concept of Chekov's Gun, yes? Well, it works both ways. What I mean is that, if someone is going to be saved by their mad swimming skills, you need to show they are a good swimmer somewhere in the beginning - preferably with some measure of subtlety. If a gun is hanging on the wall, the gun better go off later, or it's unnecessary.
Conversely, if a character DOESN'T do something that is the "why wouldn't you just..." - there better be an explanation. WHY didn't the teenager in the woods just get in the car and drive away? Oh, the lights were left on and the battery died? Well, shit. WHY didn't our hero just go hide in the panic room until the killer got bored and left? - We know from something in the first scene that he is deeply claustrophobic, so it makes sense he wouldn't do that.
THIS MOVIE THROWS CHEKOV'S GUN OUT THE WINDOW.
Holt, especially, is guilty of doing and not doing things that are A.) Counter-intuitive to what we understand to be his nature, and B.) ANY normal human being would do, but he just . . . doesn't.
(If you want to know more , you can click here.)

Le sigh. This movie suffers from shoehorned scenes, flat acting, dumb ass characters, breaking the rules of its own universe, poor cinematography, predictability, bad lighting, uneven pacing, and random just "what the hell are you doing?-ness".


F

Heads Up:  I don't remember much to be warned about. Violence, I guess. Swearing, maybe? Girl in her underwear. Bad writing. Wooden dialogue.


In theaters.




Sunday Confessions March 12, 2017



I Confess: I watched Finding Dory for the first time last night, and I definitely reacted like this at certain key parts.



I Confess: I am working on a whole series of reviews of the Resident Evil film series because I weirdly enjoy (most of) this series, even though it is awful on so many levels. But it's just delightful and a guilty pleasure even though we all know what Dave Grohl thinks about that. Still, I feel the need to kind of do a breakdown of the series and its merits (few) and failures (many) as a whole.
And if you haven't seen the series, let me assure you: it is bad.

hd home alone horrible


I Confess: I have a pimple on my jawline (thanks, menstruation!) and I can't seem to leave it alone. I hate that. Boo.








Sunday Confessions March 5, 2017



I Confess: Shawn & I went to an Applebee's downstate. And our service was bad. I asked for 2 different dipping sauces for my quesadillas and only got one. (Okay, no biggie.) I said I didn't want salsa, I got salsa. (Again, not really that big a deal.) But. It took our server about 35 minutes to bring us our appetizer. And unfortunately, I'm not exaggerating that number. And while I understand things get backed up in a kitchen, it wasn't until the 25 minute mark that she was like "oh, sorry about the wait, things get backed up sometimes. It'll be out in a few minutes."  (Tip: that should happen at about the 12-15 minute mark so people will know they will be waiting. Rather than 25 minutes of seeing/hearing nothing from their server at all, which screams of "oops, forgot to put your order in."


 So, I am confessing: guess who only left a 10% tip? 

I Confess: Sometimes I want to do social commentary posts. Reactions to articles or stories about race, gender, human rights, etc. But I also don't want to bore/alienate people. But sometimes I get very pissed about the lack of common sense in the world. Also: sometimes I have questions. And I wonder if I am the only person who has these questions or musings. So I am curious: would this bother you guys? I honestly want to know, because I care.












Air? Air!


So here are the updates: 

1.) My little brother is home (has been for a bit) and his leg looks much better. (He had an extremely bad case of cellulitis, which he can be prone to due to poor circulation and having Factor V Leiden.

2.) They never did find out what was actually the source of the blood from his lungs. They took X-rays and did a CT and did more X-rays and a scope and changed up his medicines and so many things. And NOTHING showed an actual cause. Grr. I don't like that. He is home and ambulatory and feeling much better, but I don't like not knowing what made this happen. (Actually, the doctors don't, either. But after everything, they couldn't find anything actually wrong. So...?

***

If you are curious about gross stuff, you can get a bit of an idea of what he was coughing up here and here.  (Warning: blood.)       
(These were taken in the ER and are only a smidge of everything that came up. I lost track after counting 14 oz. over the course of a week.)

***

3.) The Pneumonia (which in all likelihood came from the hospital) Kicked. My. Ass. 
I missed almost 3 more weeks of work due to this shit. Thankfully, my employers were super understanding (cutting labor right now, so I was lucky). 
I haven't had an illness beat me down that hard in a long time.


When I discovered one day that I could breathe through my nose, it was like: 


4.) I am back at work and hoping not to get sick again for a good long time. And thank you to all of you who were so kind and awesome and well-wishing for both my little brother and myself. I appreciate you all.


Sunday Confessions February 26, 2017



I confess: I have so many movies to review for Film Friday and just started posts for lots of them. Oops.

I confess: I finally bought a Kindle Fire and I am not tech savvy. I am enjoying it, but there are so many questions. I find it very NOT user friendly and I am a little annoyed at the lack of certain apps available. Blogger, Bloglovin', and Dropbox all currently fall into that category. Grr. But for reading and for Netflix/Hulu, it is awesome.

I confess: I was at work yesterday, and I had some gas leftover from finishing my antibiotics. Since I was alone in the freezer, I farted. (Sweet merciful relief.) And then my co-worker came in, right as it was done. So obviously me and so not even close to "delicate." Clearly a "are you okay?/what the hell is wrong with your digestive track?" kind.








Captain Trips




If you have been following my instagram stories, you'll know I was diagnosed with pneumonia last Saturday, to that point I'd already been "kill me now" sick for 8 days.

I am taking my antibiotics, and I am starting to feel better (if you follow me on facebook, you'll know I recently was able to breathe out of my nose for a while!) but still not great. Loaded the dishwasher today and that wiped me out.

I return to work tomorrow (fingers crossed for a good day!) and hope to resume regular blogging sometime in the next week.

Thanks to everyone for all the support you've shown on facebook and instagram and other. :)
You are all wonderful.

PS -  The nurses at the clinic had no idea what I meant when I said I had "Captain Trips" - and when I explained it, they didn't find it funny.
I do.

Wait, Self Care Isn't Selfish?

Believe it or not, self care doesn't come naturally to some people.

Self care is NOT second nature to me. I constantly have to force myself to do it, not because I don't care, but it's just....not there. Like math skills and a cognitive map - I am just simply deficient in that area.

Some is nature, some is nurture.

My mom was not into appearances or pampering yourself. She had the unfortunate belief that women should NOT be too involved in their appearance or self care, because doing so was selfish  and something to be condemned. For her, "taking care of herself" meant she cared about her how her hair looked. She worshiped the sun and prided herself on how dark her tan could get. She spent hours upon hours sitting in a stretched out lawn chair on our deck, reading a Danielle Steele and sipping on Dr. Pepper, or else just napping if us three kids were otherwise occupied. (Nintendo: probably the world's best babysitter.) The few things she insisted on were:
- Diet Dr. Pepper. Each week it was included in the groceries and it was hers and only hers.
Oil of Olay (before it was changed to just Olay and the bottles still looked like this:

image source

That was pretty much it. Focusing on your own comfort, joy, beauty, happiness - all these things were for women who were: vain, stuck up, and selfish. 
When I started using my babysitting money to buy make up and face wash (instead of the bar of soap from the shower) my mom would roll her eyes and make a snippy comment. 
(Obviously, as an adult, I am aware that she had serious issues. As a kid & teen, I didn't really know or understand.) 



Well, take this for example: when I read Pretty in Plaid by Jen Lancaster and she discusses that in junior high she began blow drying and ironing her hair every morning before school - I was stunned. Literally stunned. I actually had to stop and absorb this. I checked other sources - meaning I Googled shit - and found out that it's actually quite common for girls to do this. I mean, I know it is now, but we kind of live in different times. Even my old Seventeen magazines from back in the day didn't include ironing your hair as part of the AM routine. 
My morning routine had been: climb out of bed, put on clean clothes, eat a bowl of cereal, brush teeth, and be at the bus stop by 6:37 for pick-up and nap on the bus until we reached the school at 7:50, first bell at 8:05. (Yeah, growing up in the country kinda sucked in some ways.) 

I honestly had no idea that girls could . . .get ready. I knew girls who wore make-up to school. (Also, when my mom saw these girls she would comment on how vapid and self-righteous they were.) It just kind of didn't occur to me how the make up was getting on their faces.

The first time I saw this image (which was sometime in the past couple years)
source

I was blown away. I had multiple sessions with my therapist about it. About self care, and about my mom and her influence on my idea of self care.

So I grew up believing that taking care of yourself - emotionally and physically - was inherently egotistical. (Serious issues, I'm telling you.)

Eventually I did take care of myself more. I had been shaving my legs since I was 11, but I began begging my dad to buy me Gillette Satin Care Gel instead of just using soap. I always washed my hair, but I started insisting on Pantene moisturizing conditioner. I bought a bottle of Biore when it was first released. I started spending hours a day riding my bike around the yard and dirt roads around my house - not for exercise, but for "me" time, to be in my head, or to get out of my head - to be away from everyone and just let my thoughts run free and to daydream. (Of course I didn't know the term "me time" back when I was 13, but that's what it was.) 
My mom made snide remarks when I gave myself a special foot bath and painted my toes. She was epically pissed when I spent babysitting money on Caress body wash because I didn't want to continue using the Dial bar. In her eyes, I was becoming narcissistic and vain.
Did I think I was so special I needed special soap and a special thing to apply said soap with? (This was when Caress was first released, also kicking off the idea of the body pouf, and you got a free peach-colored pouf in select packages of Caress Body Wash.) What made me think my legs needed gel to shave with when she had no problem using a soapy lather? 

I struggled with the kind of guilt only a mother can induce, I often pretended not to care. I pretended to agree with my mother's assessment of other women being too "into themselves" when a family friend would leave her son with a babysitter and go to a movie with her girlfriends. (Kids should always come first, was her thinking. Going to a movie, spending money on the ticket, the popcorn, maybe getting appetizers someplace after - and dear God, not to mention the effort put into doing their hair and choosing lipstick - yeah. I actually thought that all sounded like super fun stuff I wanted to do - but just nodded when my mom talked about how very selfish and immature these women were.) 

I spent a great deal of my life struggling to DO self care, fighting against the guilt I felt about being a bad person for wanting it. When I was in my early twenties, I kind of came out of it as I realized serious issues but by then my need to NOT focus on taking care of myself was indoctrinated. It was a battle in my brain, to say the least, and doing something like calling in sick to work because I was overwhelmed emotionally and needed a day to just spend with the cat - wracked me with so much guilt and self loathing it almost wasn't worth it.

And finally, in my thirties, I started weekly therapy on a long term basis. I saw the cat meme above. I started to learn that it's actually ok - and even necessary - to take care of myself - both physically and emotionally. It literally was not until I started working where I'm at now that I was able to actually stand up for myself and say "I am not going to do X for these reasons." 

I now know, logically, that self care is not selfish. I know it is vital to maintaining health and sanity. I just have to remind myself to do it sometimes. I have to remind myself that I'm allowed to have a $6 bottle of conditioner that I love as opposed to the cheapest thing on the shelf because whatever - and using and loving the good conditioner doesn't make me a bad person. 

I have to remind myself of these things. 
I have to remind myself that some days, I am overwhelmed and need to let my brain check out of reality for a bit, and spend an entire day playing video games and not dealing with the news, the bills, the worries over everything - for a little while I can do that and it doesn't mean I'm weak or selfish or vain or narcissistic. 
Self care is not usually an automatic response for me. 
I'm getting better. Therapy has helped me learn to be more in tune with what I feel and what I need. But it is still not what my "natural" mode. My default is the deeply held belief that I am undeserving and selfish. But I fight it. 
I write. I read. I take deep breaths. I talk to friends, I talk to myself. I listen to myself.
I am getting better. 


(Sorry for such a long post - didn't intend for it to be so long, but kudos to you and thank you if you made it this far!) 


Sunday Confessions January 29, 2017




I Confess: I stopped taking birth control pills for several reasons, and so my hormones & moods have been more than a little:



I Confess: I am back to work after being off for a month due to an injury to my right rotator cuff. They say money can't buy happiness, but it can help you from obsessively worrying about how you're going to pay your electric bill, and I think that's something. (Being able to pay bills: underrated source of contentment since the first barter system was invented.) 



I Confess: I am at a point where I am beyond words with the stupidity of the American public. I am embarrassed and horrified and some days it takes all my strength not to go off on people.  
Honestly, some days, eugenics seems like a good idea. (Not in the nazi way, but in the "can we not have selfish dipshit bigots breeding?" kind of way. And I should note that I don't care how . . . less than bright someone is if they have a good heart. So it's not just an IQ thing.) 










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