commotiocordis: Green on black, an animated depiction of a normal heart rhythm on an ECG monitor. (Default)
2014-12-27 10:00 pm

(no subject)

Boy at work who apparently really likes me asked me if I was bisexual today

(he had apparently either read me as queer (!! that never happens) or heard from somebody that this was the case, but been told 'no, I think she swings both ways' by other coworker)

as prelude to asking me out, I guess, because he wanted to find out if he has a chance and that I wasn't a lesbian?

that's kind of rad, that he was asking so as to rule-in hetero-attraction rather than assuming it or any of the myriad less-pleasant reasons to want that information

but I'm like "wellllllll, it's a little more complicated than that"

and he goes "what, like pan?"

I about fucking dropped a whole stack of pizzas

you go, enlightened pizzaboy from backwoods ghettoville!

he still didn't know what asexuality was but he was curious enough that I caught him asking one of other coworkers if he knew; other coworker's explanation was some version of weird sexual narcissism, though, so I had to step in there and try and fix things as best I could when I was already supposed to be out on a run, so hopefully kid goes home and Googles maybe

there was more than a little of "oh, but I'm like that too; I spend most of my time alone blah blah so is everyone", so the real test of whether this guy is a champ or not is going to be whether he gets the idea that I'm honestly not interested and backs off or decides that he wants to keep going for it because I obviously haven't had the right dick yet, but I'm hopeful.

commotiocordis: Green on black, an animated depiction of a normal heart rhythm on an ECG monitor. (Default)
2014-06-20 12:02 am

(no subject)

Bonus, I'm linking to the Wikipedia or Goodreads pages of all the books, because 1000% recommend all of the below.

Articles of the Federation by Keith R.A. DeCandido is one of the few media tie-in novels that I've read more than once, because though it only features cameos from your favorite characters, it's a really rich expansion of a part of the universe that is pretty much a black hole on screen: Star Trek meets The West Wing, basically.  It's set in between Nemesis and the lead up to the reboot, and written by one of my favorite ST novel authors.  It's really brilliant, and if you're interested in the broader Star Trek universe outside of ships and the military at all, here's a primer on the civilian political system hidden within a captivating novel.

Midnight's Children by Salman Rushdie was part of a colonialism theme in English class, and pretty much my entire introduction to anything having to do with Indian independence (like, the fact that it happened ?  Hello, history classes, what the fuck.)  So this was a world-broadening book, for sure, as this historical fiction/magical realism amalgamation required a decent bit of learning about the struggles of newly-independent India to understand both the political allegory and some of the actual plot events therein.  Also, Rushdie is partial to the very stream-of-consciousness writing style that I use myself (I was looking over notes for a presentation I had to give on the novel to remind myself why I liked it, and actually had to Google this bit to see if he wrote it or I did; the only hit was my blog pointing it out seven years ago, though, ahaha), so his words flow in my brain like they belong.

Chronicle of a Death Foretold by Gabriel García Márquez has such an interesting non-linear storytelling format that I was super inspired to try it out myself in some writing (which never actually came to fruition, but still).  While other things will inspire me in an "oh, I want to fanfic this" way, this was unique in that the story ideas in my head were forming around this narrative technique rather than around characters or settings.  I think I've put off my reread in the original Spanish for too long at this point to be able to do it without constant dictionarying, but it's still on my to-do list, and as it's a novella, it might be manageable.

Dark Passions by Susan Wright is another stand-out of the literally 100+ Star Trek books I've read (this is a two-parter, actually), but for less world-building and more "reads like a femslash fic" reasons.  This one has everyone's favorite things: it's heavily dominated by powerful female characters, many of whom are queer, and ties the TNG and Voyager characters into the mirror universe established in the DS9 episodes.  That's right: (even more) canon. mirror. universe. lesbians.

The Harry Potter series, because of the universe and the fandom and all the magic and memories that entails.

The Sherlock Holmes canon, also mostly for the fandom and the universe and all the fun that has come out of it.  I'm one of the newish (though with Sherlock and Elementary, I suppose I'm from an older wave, now!) Holmes fans who saw 09!SH and immediately went home and read all the canon and watched the Granada series and dove straight in to classic fandom while waiting for everyone else to catch up.  So even though this was a movie-inspired read, my love for the canonverse is no less strong (and stronger than that for BBC Sherlock, tbh, because I have massive love for Victorian England).  Specifically, I love SCAN for Irene of course (here have some meta notes on it from ages ago), DYIN, 3GAR -- okay, the ones whose titles come to mind are just the gayest ones and not the ones with the best stories or anything, sorry not sorry.

The Hot Zone by Richard Preston is a thriller about a filovirus outbreak outside of DC; after a solid chunk of the book on Marburg and Ebola to make sure you're up to snuff on why exactly you should be fucking terrified, we track from patient (monkey) zero of how it got there and how it was contained and hidden from the general public to prevent panic.  Oh, and did I mention it's nonfiction?  The drama makes it almost novel-esque, though there's enough background on the history and evolution of filoviruses (though from 1995, so I'd need a reread to see if anything's dramatically off of what we've learned since then) via discussion of other Marburg and Ebola outbreaks to make this a solid straddler of the science-read/fun-read category. 

Level 4: Virus Hunters of the CDC  by McCormick, Horvitz, & Fisher-Hoch is of a similar vein, but more scientific and less dramatized; it's comprised of stories written by the scientists who actually work in the level 4 containment facilities with the incurable plagues.  It's a great look inside the lab and was my first picture of medicine that wasn't straight up clinical, so it was really influential in that way.  This one was read probably every summer from 1998-2002, and along with The Hot Zone, put USAMRIID squarely atop both my lists of "Places I'd Love To Work" and "Places I Never Want To Be Within 200 Miles Of Jesus God".

Politically Correct Bedtime Stories (and the others in the series) by James Finn Garner is basically what it says on the tin: a satirization of classic stories where the humor is two-pronged -- the narrator is overwhelmingly garrulous in his inoffensiveness while the stories themselves have been updated for a ~modern world and are often changed entirely to be radically feminist or socialist (but I don't recall being angry or feeling poked fun at, because they were so ridiculous?).  The Christmas one was once an annual favorite.  We spent a week or so reading these aloud in the back of English class sophomore year of high school; they're really funny.

The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy by Douglas Adams is the funniest shit, eminently quotable, and easily the best six-book trilogy ever published.  I haven't read the posthumous one yet, and I hear it's not as good (Eoin Colfer's Artemis Fowl books were great at the beginning and suffered from series fatigue too, so I wonder if you can have the same problem picking up someone else's work), but they're all available on audio, many narrated by Stephen Fry or Martin Freeman, if you're into audiobooks like I am.

commotiocordis: Green on black, an animated depiction of a normal heart rhythm on an ECG monitor. (Default)
2012-08-08 09:49 am

(no subject)

Random fantastic post of whining that was originally a tweet but I kept typing and hahahaha.

Laptop managed to get trojans that deleted its ability to network and I may have screwed it up more trying to fix it before I knew it was malware-caused (because stupid AVG said everything was fine like a moron) and there are somehow no system restore points on the laptop so no easy fix. It theoretically works totally fine minus the inability to network, but I HAVE SPENT THE LAST WEEK fucking with all the computers to set the server back up so this is Not Okay.

And I need to print off my resume so I can finally turn in this application but I can't print it from the laptop because aforementioned deleted ability to network and I haven't installed Word on the desktop computer yet. (Doing right now, but it takes a long time.)

And I need to go to the gym because that makes things better when things = wanting to put my fist through computers and the universe, but my stomach hurts and I'm too fat to leave the house and I don't want to go to the gym without this goddamned job application again I've been holding on to it for like a week.

And apparently my mom wants me to come home but I don't want to leave without turning this job application in because Important which is why I leave for home yesterday like I should have. Theoretically job more important but let's not kid ourselves I won't get called back for it I was ridiculously qualified for the last two jobs I applied for and got excited about and n o p e not even an email to say they'd filled the position nothing.

So by not turning in this goddamned application like last week and going home days ago when I could have I'm probably fucking up whatever plans she has but that's okay because I would hate them anyway because I am horrible and rotten and ungrateful.
commotiocordis: Green on black, an animated depiction of a normal heart rhythm on an ECG monitor. (Default)
2012-07-08 04:40 pm

(no subject)

How did I spend my afternoon? Oh, Google!stalking my old orchestra teacher and rocking back and forth on the couch over how much I miss having a reason to wake up in the morning.

LOL, nothing to see here, just a rerun of 'Alexandria Still Has A Giant Hero-Worship Crush On Someone Who Probably Has Forgotten Her Name' . )
commotiocordis: Green on black, an animated depiction of a normal heart rhythm on an ECG monitor. (Default)
2012-03-06 02:25 pm

(no subject)

So, um, don't consider this sound medical advice at all or anything, but just fyi:
  • If you have teeth coming in and they're at the point that they're stretching and rubbing little holes in your gums until they split

  • And especially if one of them is halfway in but there's still just a stupid band of gum covering the back half that food likes to get caught under

  • And all of this hurts like fuck

  • And you think "I bet I could just slit the gum right across the top of the hidden tooth and free it up a bit instead of enduring all this slow flesh-splitting misery"

  • And you have access to scalpels/really sharp microscissors/something you can sterilize

  • This is actually

  • A really good plan.

No seriously, I'd been thinking about doing it forever, and the pain finally got bad enough last night after I managed to wedge food under my gums though the tiny hole the tooth had worn away (this happens all the time with the one that was halfway in, but another just recently decided to start making an appearance so the gum was way more stretched and thus getting something under it was excruciating) that I just went for it, and it feels so much better now. Even immediately, while still spitting out gobs of blood, I was in 293487230 times less pain. Morning after, there's kind of mild achyness, but not even enough to bother taking an aspirin for and still less bothersome than the usual flesh-splitting misery; it feels more like I just bruised it a bit while messing around back there. Totally not kidding when I say that I wish I'd done it ages ago.

Only downside is that there is rather a lot of blood involved. If I'd had a 12-blade scalpel, it would have been a lot easier because I could have just stuck the curvy tip into the hole in my gums and slit straight upwards, but I only had 10-blades, so I ended up trying both sticking it in the hole and pushing laterally with the blade upwards and just pressing straight down through the gum on top of the tooth. The former method worked much better, as with the latter, you'd feel the crunch of some of the tissue splitting but not actually be making it the full thickness to the tooth (and then have to wait until the bleeding slowed down so you could see the field and try again).

/fuck yeah home surgery
commotiocordis: Green on black, an animated depiction of a normal heart rhythm on an ECG monitor. (Default)
2012-03-04 05:17 pm

(no subject)

Total alexithymia here but it feels weird that my mom is so behind my desire to actually get aspie/asd/whatever finally officially written down.

I mean, it's good that she's going to help, but shouldn't she be saying "no kid you're totally normal" instead of "yeah I always kind of wondered"? If you always kinda wondered why did every evaluation of me stop after I blew away the IQ portion?

Maybe this feeling is just extension of my vague resentment of everyone involved in my education? I know I've thought about this before, because I am pretty much the quintessential example of "kid who fell through the cracks because as long as she can pass the standardized tests we can't be arsed to figure out what's wrong with her". Like maybe the third time I got yelled at by the teacher for "rolling my eyes"/not making eye contact maybe that could have been looked into? and the head banging/si and the stimming and the inability to make friends and the clothing sensory issues and the food sensory issues and the sound sensory issues and how I had to lock myself in my room with the lights off for hours every day right after school/being in public to turn into a person again and the fear of the telephone and the weird obsessions and how all the comorbid things line up too etc. etc.

I mean, I can't blame my parents because when you've got a high functioning kid and a lower functioning kid I understand you've got to make sure the latter can actually graduate before expending the effort to ferret into the former's more hidden issues, but I still feel like . . . idk, like I fell through the cracks. And that if stuff was caught earlier, proper interventions and such could have reduced the probability that it would have caught up to me as hard as it has in college.
commotiocordis: Green on black, an animated depiction of a normal heart rhythm on an ECG monitor. (Default)
2012-01-26 05:09 am

(no subject)

A sort-of response to "An Issue in Sherlock That Annoys Me and Why", which is an essay about gifted persons and emotion, with specific reference to the eponymous character in the BBC drama "Sherlock".

This is mostly just YES THIS with a large dose of WOW MY CHILDHOOD LET ME TELL YOU ABOUT IT encased in a few giant, run-on paragraphs. 

Also, let me just get modesty and such out of the way: labeling yourself as intelligent is such a Not Done thing (made even worse by societal expectations of women, but that's another rant), and I hate comparing/being compared to other people because I will always zoom in on the way(s) that I fall short, so this entire thing is extremely uncomfortable to write.  But if I keep apologizing every time I refer to the fact that I consider myself part of this group of Super Screwed-Up Super Gifted Super Freaks, it will be even more uncomfortable to read.  So.  Blanket "blah blah, I don't mean that other people are dumb, blah blah my self-worth on good days approaches that of a rock covered in toothpaste blah blah".

Read more... )

And okay, this has gotten too long and I don't even know what I'm talking about anymore because I'm kind of upset now, but blah.  There it is.  I'm not sure there's any meaning or even relevance in any of this wordvomit, but have some stories about me.

commotiocordis: Green on black, an animated depiction of a normal heart rhythm on an ECG monitor. (Default)
2011-12-29 04:11 am

(no subject)

Is it weird to cry about not being in pain and feeling kind of good?

TL;DR — omg Valium + Gabapentin is all I want for Christmas.

I took a Valium for my dentist appointment, and some of my dad’s Gabapentin afterwards because I have some kind of nerve issue on one side of my mouth that becomes excruciating when people poke around in there idk.

And this evening was probably the best I have felt in recent memory, easily.

I don’t realize how just generally on edge I am until I’m not anymore. Feeling relaxed is such a foreign concept to me that it was almost weird. And my mouth stopped hurting, and the fibro pain that’s been killing my back lately went away, and I was able to straighten my legs after sitting crosslegged without literally rolling around and biting my fist to keep from crying, and EVERYTHING WAS BRILLIANT.

I wanted to play music and write stories and go run around with my dogs outside and frolic in the sun and I’m pretty sure this is how life is supposed to feel for normal people.

It’s long been a wonder of mine how much my depression contributes to my chronic pain and how much my chronic pain contributes to my depression, and this certainly seems to lend support to my theory that fixing the pain would make me a much happier person.

But then I started thinking about how it’s all going to wear off in a little while and then all the crying because askdjfalskdjf I want to feel like this forever. WHY CAN’T I JUST BE A NORMAL PERSON WITH NORMAL PERSON FEELS AND NORMAL PERSON LACK-OF-PAIN?
commotiocordis: A still image, green on black, of an electrocardiogram readout depicting the heart rhythm asystole. (asystole)
2011-11-04 01:36 am

(no subject)

Sometimes, taking my ADD meds makes things even worse.

They make it so I can only concentrate on one thing at once, somehow, which would be okay if I hadn’t spent 20+ years training myself to live with horrible, horrible ADD by OMG MULTITASKING ALL THE TIME.

Also, Ritalin is kind of a fantastic (if temporary) antidepressant, and one of the side effects of that is this IMMA DO THIS AND FIX THIS AND KNIT A HAT AND STUDY FOR THIS TEST AND PLAY THIS GAME AND ALSO DO THIS THING I’VE BEEN PUTTING OFF AND THAT ONE AND GO TO THE GYM AND SAVE THE WORLD mentality. So I try to multitask like normal on a highly increased number of tasks and nothing gets done.

Basically, I’m normally a 2.2ghz hyperthreading, quad-core processor, and Ritalin turns me into a 4.6ghz single-core processor. Because of the extra speed, you feel like you can open more programs at once, but this is not the case.
commotiocordis: Green on black, an animated depiction of a normal heart rhythm on an ECG monitor. (Default)
2011-10-03 11:08 pm

(no subject)

I hate feeling stuck. Like I'm not being allowed to make any decisions for myself.

Roommate just backtracked on possibly getting rid of the cat we have that doesn't get along with anybody else. Like, no discussion.

She decides we don't get rid of the mean one that shits in the bathtub, she decides we have to get rid of my kittens, she decided I still can't put my treadmill in the garage because she was "eventually going to put [her] car in there" even though that's been her reason for three years and she's never done it, she decided she was going to spur of the moment get a dog (and then not train it for shit -- seriously, everything this dog knows is because of me; if it were up to her, she'd just let it hang around like a house ornament or something idk), and she decided I don't get to go home on my fucking vacation because I have to stay home and watch her animals.

I'm really tempted to just drive home as soon as my break starts. I'll take my kittens, maybe even the two grownup!kittens that I love to death (but that are still hers), and she can just deal. Figure it out herself.

I'm fucking tired of being told what to do.
commotiocordis: Green on black, an animated depiction of a normal heart rhythm on an ECG monitor. (Default)
2011-07-21 11:37 pm

(no subject)

Walking through Six Flags and then standing up for an entire concert in the midst of a not inconsiderable allergic reaction (we're talking it hurt to breathe to the point where I'm actually, finally going to call the doctor tomorrow) outside in 110F-ish weather?

Bad idea. 

But on the up side, bed feels so nice.

Quadruple dose of Benadryl and I'm feeling tons better, though that stuff makes me so sleepy that I'm probably putting the computer up for bed as soon as I finish typing this.

Also, Darren freaking Criss.  Marry me.  He's such a good showman, interacting with the audience a lot.  Also, very good at playing instruments.  Not just oh, everybody who sings on stage can strum a few chords on a guitar; he knows the theory enough that he sort of modulated a bit of one to match the major of the train that was going by, just on the fly on the keyboard like whatevs.  Also did an impromptu drum solo during the encore wherein he sort of pushed the drummer out of the way without missing a beat.

And he played either guitar or keyboard the whole time he sang, and he sang pretty darn well for it being live and him coming straight off of another set of concerts, and my only complaint is that he didn't take his shirt off it was totally awesome.

commotiocordis: (Shoebox)
2011-07-15 07:06 pm

(no subject)

I think the only reason I didn't cry at Harry Potter was because of my anti-depressants. And while it's nice that I'm not, you know, seriously contemplating suicide because now I have nothing else to live for, I sort of feel . . . cheated. I've been upset/anxious/wary/sad/excited about this for months now, and then nothing. It was sad, but the only part where tears even threatened to spill down was the moment the credits began to roll. During the actual film, my favorite characters were dying left and right and I was just like "oh."

Basically, I cried much much much harder at the book. I'm not sure whether that's a flaw in the translation of the book to the screen or a flaw in my personal emotional response, but judging by how much everybody else seemed to find the movie appropriately upsetting, I think it has to be the latter.
commotiocordis: (Seven/B'Elanna)
2011-06-11 11:39 am

(no subject)

Shoving (healthy) food down my throat even though I’m not at all hungry because my body decided to give out on me again during my gym class. It’s so fucking frustrating. I know it’s not because I’m missing any nutrients or hadn’t eaten or anything, though; it’s definitely my heart. I can tell the difference between low blood sugar and low blood pressure, and this was the latter. The doctor has said it’s undoubtedly just idiopathic (because if it were anything serious, I probably would have died already — she blames it on anxiety, like I knew would happen as soon as I got any kind of psych label put on me, when that’s obviously not the case. If it happened when I got up in front of people or was driving to school or something, sure, but not at the gym; give me a break), but it’s still scary.

I got halfway through the lunges (which are always hard on me, but today I’d thought were going pretty well), and in the 15 seconds or whatever while switching legs, my blood pressure ~recovered (read: dropped like a rock) so much that I sort of blacked out completely. Not as in actually passed out, but as in my vision went totally black, the girl next to me actually dropped her bar because she thought she was going to have to catch me because I was super white and kind of wobbled, and I only just managed to bend down and get enough blood back to my brain to be able to see enough to make my way out of the room and sit down on the floor. (I really should have just sat down right there, but I think I would have died from embarrassment.)

UGH UGH UGH. And then it did it again when I got out of the car after driving home. I was able to just, you know, hang onto the car door until I recovered that time, so it wasn’t nearly as bad, but STILL NOT FUN.

I hate you, heart. I want to make you stronger, but that’s kind of hard when you’re working against me like this whenever I try to exercise you, huh?
commotiocordis: (Telegram)
2011-06-09 05:49 am

(no subject)

Dream where there was some big, apocalyptic crisis going on and I am totally gay for River Song.

Olivia Wilde and Benedict Cumberbatch had to pretend (for god knows what reason) to be my parents to get us out of some sticky situation and that wasn't fair because EPIC SEXUAL FRUSTRATION. Unconscious brain was then just like "oh, that's true; here, have another awesome person for yourself". So I meet up with River Song (who was the fourth part of my Saving The World Team -- I think I might have sort of been The Doctor, because Olivia was Amy and Benedict was Rory, for sure), and there's like this instant sparky thing of attraction/recognition, because we've worked together in the past, but there was some kind of amnesia thing around that mission, so it's all fuzzy.

So then River and I were running around trying to get where we needed to go to escape it and then fix things. While holding hands and sort of flirting a lot. We were running across/out of what looked like an old military fort (I think Fort de Chartres, actually, though I've only been there once when I was 12, so I could be making that up), and just as we got out the front and were going toward the street, I turned to her and was like "do you remember the last time we did this?" (meaning run all escapy from somewhere while holding hands) and she didn't, because of that amnesia thing in that ~mission, but she was like "I wondered why this felt so right." LOLOLOLOL, PMSing Alexandria's brain is soppily romantic.

There were these cars we had to get to to take us to our next location that were sort of arriving on a cycle like a shuttle, and at one point we were walking with a bunch of people to get there, including Melissa, one of my friends from elementary/middle/high school who's really conservative (but super nice). River and I sort of fell back a step so we could hold hands again, and she turned around and looked, and I was kind of worried what she would think for a minute, but then was like "Pshh, but I am le happy, so who cares." And then Melissa sort of half-smiled and then faced front again and it was nice. COOL STORY BRO.

And then it got much less impressive because the fact that I had to pee IRL bled into the dream, so I was trying to find a bathroom but there was this like, idk, Diva Cup seminar going on in front of the bathroom in the craft store building I ducked into, and they were like "I know why you're here; have one!" and I was like "I already do, but thanks," and ended up answering some of the gathered women's questions about it first, and then I woke up because I did really have to pee. EVEN COOLER OF A STORY, BRO.

    Unanswered questions:
  • Why do I never get to have sex in my EPIC SEXUAL FRUSTRATION DREAMS.

  • Why.

commotiocordis: (Shoebox)
2011-05-27 12:02 am

(no subject)

Facebook wants me to friend my best friend from high school.

You would not think this would be a hard decision.

It's just been so long and so much shit has happened (not between us, but individually) and the fact that we're not close anymore hurts so much, and it just feels like being friends on Facebook is such a worthless thing (especially because I know she won't really use it) that I don't want to even bother. I mean, if it's causing me this much grief just from a recommendation on the sidebar, what's it going to be like if I have to see what her life is like now, without me? I was supposed to be like her, happy and doing brilliantly at a top-tier school and with a bright future ahead, and . . . I'm not any of those things.

Our relationship was sort of bad for me at times, because rather than want to compete against her, I'd pull back in classes we shared so I didn't have to deal with the pressure. And I pretty much only had her, while she had some other friends, so I was much more dependent and sort of jealous a lot (but this is usually the case). But at the same time, she made me want to do better. Her opinion of me mattered like no other peer has ever mattered to me before, and I wanted her to be proud of me.

My memories of high school consist of mock trial, orchestra, my ~issues, and Katie. All of them fit into one of those categories. The problem is that senior year, most of them fit into category three, so when I went off to college, I was really distant from everybody. And then I started gaining weight and that was just sort of a symbol of how everything else was falling apart, and I didn't want anyone to see me. I didn't want to talk to her (or anyone else) because I was afraid they'd want to hang out, and I'd have to make up an excuse because I wanted their memories of me to be how I was near graduation: together, decent grades, a job, and skinny. Which means I hardly want anyone to see me now, when I've pretty much hit rock bottom on all of those things.

Also, there may or may not have been sort of an unrequited love thing going on. I didn't really realize it until years after we'd last seen each other, but I think I spent way too much time angsting over this girl for us to just have been friends, at least on my side of it. I mean, I wasn't sexually attracted to her, but it's definitely the most intense relationship I've ever had. I remember at one point discussing how I'd been planning on us moving in together during college and after, and talking about what we should name our dogs, and she was like "well, I always sort of assumed I'd get married after college" and I didn't speak to her the rest of the day because I was heartbroken. I mean, hello, giant flashing YOU'RE IN LOVE WITH HER sign right there. But, I mean, it wasn't love as most people would define it, I guess? It was just friendship that was . . . stronger. The if-you-are-blind-and-don't-see-the-subtext Xena/Gabrielle sort of relationship, you know? We actually compared ourselves to House and Wilson more than a few times -- I like diagnostics and puzzles and have the more blatant issues, she's better with people and everyone likes her and she was interested at one point in oncology. To be super melodramatic, I felt like she was the other half of my One Great True Pairing, the really forever BFFs, and now I've lost that, and . . . I mean, I feel like there's only one person in the world for you like that, and when that ends, what kind of hope do you have from there?

Idk. I'm not over her yet, apparently.

Despite not having eaten yet today, I'm going to go to bed now, I think. This is too much and now I'm super angsty and I want her to be my friend again but I just don't see how it could ever work out the way I want it to (I'm kind of an all or nothing kind of gal when it comes to my heart). I know that I would still die for her in an instant, and I don't want to have to think about the fact that she probably wouldn't do the same. THIS IS WHY WE DON'T NORMALLY DO THIS SOCIAL ATTACHMENT THING, SELF. YOU JUST SIT YOUR LITTLE SCHIZOID PERSONALITY OVER IN THE CORNER AND KNIT, IT'S BETTER THAT WAY.
commotiocordis: (Jack/Ianto)
2011-05-17 08:14 am

(no subject)

Some thoughts on gender. Also sex. So, umm, vaguely graphic things you probably don't want to know about me? ETA: This got SUPER tl;dr, so you can treat the bolded bits like a summary and just read those, if you're interested.

Over the past couple of years, I've begun to sort of question my gender identification, but I always end up feeling . . . idk, inadequate. I have long hair and I wear skirts literally all the time, I must be like the femalest female who ever femaled, right? When I go bra shopping, I look for things that push them up rather than push them down. I can tick absolutely zero of the standard outward-appearance indicator boxes for other-than-cis-genderism.

But I was looking through an old notebook a few months (maybe a year?) back, and something in there triggered a memory of being very young (7-8 ish) and in the shower and sort of daydreaming that I was pregnant because I was both male and female, and had managed to inseminate myself internally. (Weird, I know.) And that was a running thing, the feeling that I was both male and female. I mean, I knew it was biologically impossible, but that ~fantasy stuck with me for years.

Beyond that, you had your standard tomboy stuff -- I spent every day at the gifted program in elementary school playing kickball with the boys during recess; I remember one of my friends moving back in with her aunt for the summer across the street from my house and saying "Okay, let's start on your tomboy-ification" because she'd spent the year getting her hair brushed and wearing fancy clothes and I wanted a friend to climb trees with; I thought makeup was a fun toy back in third and fourth grade, but in middle school when girls started wearing it to actually wear it, I wasn't interested (save a bit of the black eyeliner goth stuff for a while, but even that got given up on all but special occasions). Those by itself, obviously, indicate nothing about a person's gender identity, but I feel like it's sort of a record of my never feeling female. On the other hand, I never felt male either. I never pressured my mom to let me buzz my hair, or pitched any more fits than the usual kid being forced into a dress for Easter church; I even chose to go by Alexandria instead of Alex in middle school (though that was more because I wanted to be unique than anything else).

As I got older, I spent late middle and most of high school pretty sure I was a lesbian, but I think that's because I wasn't interested in penetrative, penis-in-my-vagina sex, and thought that automatically, logically meant I was a lesbian. It was also a role to play, an identity that I could have -- I still call myself a homo all the time, even though it's not 100% accurate, just because I want to claim that experience, to be a part of that identity that as an other-than-mainstream-branch queer I sometimes feel I'm pushed to the side of. (That gets into a whole other long thing that there have been plenty of diatribes about by people much less tired than I am, so have some keywords like biphobia and erasure and Google it yourself.)

But still, I remember somewhere in earlyish high school (I was probably 15 or 16) watching an Oprah about women with huge clitorises with my Dad omg it was awkward at the time, and it being mentioned that they were pretty much just like little penises, and wondering aloud why that would be a bad thing. He said it was probably just image, or being worried the people they're with will think they're not female, but I didn't really get it. You still have all the female bits, you don't have to deal with the stigma of outwardly presenting as other-than-cis-gendered, and you get a mini penis that could be used (as one of the women's anecdotes related) for penetration; what's not to like?

Late high school/early college, I started to wake up to my boy attraction (thank you, David Tennant), but realized that I still wasn't interested in PIV sex. I get sex dreams pretty much never (maybe two or three a year, idk) but the few times I did, it was always oral/handjob, frot, or me as the penetrative partner (with a strong slant toward the latter two). Okay, dreams, I figured, we'll see if there's anything to this. It's very rare that I would fantasize as myself with someone else (I always masturbated to fanfiction without putting myself in either player's place really, *shrugs*), but I sort of tried it a bit, and holy shit does imagining fucking Olivia Wilde with my invisible dick get me off. Imagining jerking off said invisible dick is also surprisingly helpful. Frot (with both males and females) is pretty much Number One and has turned into my hugest fic kink ever. So, um, okay then. Apparently, my subconscious had a point, and I kind of want a dick.

But I don't want to be male. Not particularly. Not consistently. I've expressed a desire to be male when doing things like going to the Adam Lambert concerts, because I wish that things like painting my nails and putting on tons of makeup and glitter were expressed to other people as the alternative gender performance that they really are for me, rather than it just being something that girls are expected to do. I'd get a hysterectomy simply because I have such severe premenstrual dysphoric disorder and it's the cause of much misery and suicidal ideation, but I don't think I'd ever get top surgery because my breasts don't really bother me. I'd love to magically have a penis, not gonna lie, but I don't know if I could stomach ever doing something so drastically radical and unchangeable to my body, and definitely not at the sorry state of technology that bottom surgery is now (for those who haven't spent ages looking this up and thinking about it -- probably another sign that I wasn't just investigating for Roommate and Scientific Curiosity -- a huge huge percentage of FTMs don't get it because it's like $200,000, and even then comes with severe risk of losing sensation and has only mechanically-assisted function and isn't even always able to pass, like most good MTF bottom surgery is).

Speaking of Roommate, I spent quite a while not talking about this (or even really thinking about it) because I was sort of worried that maybe I was just feeling this way because she had been exploring her FTM-ness and I just wanted to . . . be special like her? But now that I'm thinking about it, it goes back so far that I think it just took Rachel to make me realize that maybe this was a thing and not just that my body issues were just standard low level eating disorder and the fantasizing about having a penis thing was a minor and probably-should-be-suppressed-if-you-ever-want-a-working-relationship quirk. Would I ever have expressed it anywhere but my own fantasies if she hadn't been around? Doubtful. But I don't think that makes it any less real, I guess?

I think there's a lot of weight to be put on my attraction map. (I'm not sure if that's a thing, but that's how I've been thinking about it for some time now.) Somewhere along the line, my concept of beauty got set with a skew sort of towards the feminine, as this ideal with a feminine face and (generally) androgynous body, and that's more or less my ideal image for myself. One of them, I guess. I'm attracted to people who are more or less that andro-chic look, but I also find a strong aesthetic appreciation for people with more feminine bodies (i.e. curves), and therefore sometimes I'm okay with looking like that, too. Sometimes. The ~feminine me still doesn't like to do her makeup and hair every day, or make a sandwich for her boyfriend because she's supposed to, or stay home and watch the kids, and is definitely still more of the power female, but she's more okay with her curves even to the point of sometimes feeling sexy in a clingy dress or something. It's like I'm bigendered, with the two sides being genderqueer and female. Which is super weird.

I know that most of my gender performance is because it's just easier. The constant skirts is a body image thing, because I have, um, probably some kind of serious body dysmorphic disorder when it comes to my thighs and have a hard time handling looking at them, so it's easier to just wear skirts. The hair is vanity, given, but it fits in with my sort of feminine facial ideal. I'm not sure if I'd rather be flat chested or curvy (the andro or the feminine), but I've got tits. (Pretty easily bindable ones, much to Roommate's consternation, but all the same.) And so I work what I've got; I buy the push-up bras, because I at least want what I have to be perfect. (Hallo, perfectionism/control issues/the root of much misery.)

It tends to mean I attract "the wrong kind of person" for me; I think, because of the typology of people I'm attracted to and my slash hobbies and all of this stuff, etc. etc., if I ever were interested in a relationship, even with a man, it would probably have to be someone out of the queer community. I'm read pretty much as straight, or on very rare occasions, hit on by more butch girls, when I want to be the sort of dominant one or at least equal in a relationship (not that relationships require any kind of dom/sub -- and I do not mean this in the BDSM way, but just in general dynamics; the leader and the follower -- or male/female traditional binary roles, but often they sort of happen, even in friendships sometimes, I find). I'm the toppiest top who ever hasn't actually sexually topped, as we say. Which is why I think I'm not hit on by gay girls more often; idk, maybe I put off dominance vibes, so no one comes to me, but then I don't go out and go after anyone? I mean, I'm not interested in a relationship, really, which is why I have no particular drive to change anything about how I present, but it doesn't mean I'm not super jealous when Roommate gets hit on all. the. time. by lesbians and nobody ever looks twice at me.

I'm not sure if I'm attracted to males (almost exclusively gay males in real life, or celebs with more feminine features/presentation) more often when I'm feeling genderqueer/andro and females more often when I'm feeling feminine, or if it's the other way around. I think genderqueer me is attracted to both/pan, and feminine me is more attracted to the women side of the spectrum, maybe? I notice periods of time when I'm much more likely to look pretty much exclusively at women and periods when I look at both or more men (but I don't think ever exclusively), with androgynous types being somewhere in the middle of both, but I'm not sure if that correlates to periods of feeling one way or the other. (I also couldn't tell you how often I feel one way or the other, because it's not really a line that I jump across or anything.) I know I've never had a sexual dream/fantasy where I was explicitly female with a man (a lot of the time, I'm sort of . . . non-gender specific?), but I've been female-bodied in lesbian dreams.

And when I say attracted, I really just mean aesthetic appreciation. I'm pretty sure I'm pretty asexual. I can look at people and think they are ridiculously attractive, and I can look at people and think I want to spend time with them, and I can look at people and think both, but never do I look at someone and think "I want to have sex with you." That's just not something that goes through my mind ever. The biggest, longest running crush on a Real Life Boy I've ever had, I don't think I've ever had a sexual thought about him, and only fleeting ones for my Real Life Woman crush (but that didn't really count, because she wasn't really a Real Life person because it was literally impossible to have a relationship with her being, um, my teacher) -- I'll on occasion have sexual fantasies about celebs or something, but I know if I ever, for instance, had the opportunity to do whatever I wanted with Olivia Wilde for one night in real life, we'd have dinner and talk politics and maybe cuddle. I remember realizing, at a Halloween party last year, that I hadn't gotten off in a while, and there was a guy there who was kind of cute (in that lighting, at least; turns out not so much, but still), and that I could totally make out with, possibly do him if I wanted to, but I didn't. Not at all. Not even "oh, that'd be nice but I don't really know him so that's dumb"; there was just no desire whatsoever, even when I tried to mentally put someone else (including women) I knew better in his place.

But then again, I think I would have no problem, if I broke past some barriers and was in a relationship, having sex. I enjoy orgasms. (Or, um, I did. Fucking anti-depressants.) But I don't . . . go out and look for it? I have no particular desire to have sex with another person, save maybe for scientific curiosity, but if you were here and I was here and we were really good friends/in a relationship and were bored or (idk if I ever actually get this way, but) horny or whatever, sure; as is an occasional catchphrase in our house, "Here, have some orgasms." I've told Roommate before (I think I was probably drunk, but still) that I would totally do her if she ever wanted to fool around, just because I love her (platonically) and if I can do something that makes her feel good, why not? That puts me more on the aromantic side of the spectrum and would disqualify me from "true" asexuality in some people's narrow views, but whatever.

COOL STORY BRO. Just some things I've been thinking about. I kind of tend to just go "agh, fuck labels" because I am so confusing, but at the same time, I feel . . . idk, like I said above in regard to my lesbianism in high school, like I don't want to get left out of this group that I belong to? I don't generally stress about them, but they helped in this case to sort of ~express my feelings. Of all the things I angst about, though, this isn't one of them. The fact that I'm Ace doesn't disturb me (even though I have the probably unpopular opinion that most asexuals probably could be diagnosed with some kind of attachment or arousal disorder; just because it's a thing -- like Roommate's Gender Identity Disorder, or my redheadedness -- doesn't mean you have to do anything about it if it's not distressful or an impediment to functioning). I imagine the gender thing might be more disturbing if I was desiring of a standard, heterosexual relationship (or any relationship at all), but because of the asexuality, it's just not an issue. I wish that my gender performance could be more in line with how I actually feel I'm performing (see above Adam Lambert example), but that's life.

Sometimes, Roommate and I say we're 200% gay. It's crazy; we're like fucking SuperQueer over here or something. Fuck yeah, house of fabulousness.

I keep reading over this and wanting to add more/change things to make sure it all makes sense, but I think exactly two people are going to read even this much, so we'll just hit post.
commotiocordis: Green on black, an animated depiction of a normal heart rhythm on an ECG monitor. (Default)
2011-05-16 09:38 am

(no subject)

Hello, 9:30 am. Ahh, finals and their unique ability to force you to stay up for days straight and then give you no reason to resume a normal sleeping schedule for some time afterwards.

Not looking forward to putting the computer away simply because sleep has been less than restful since I clench my jaw worse while sleeping than any other time. Problem is that I don't clench my teeth together, but rather outward in sort of a grimace, which means commercial remedies like a mouthguard are of no help. Also, I do it while I'm awake without being able to stop it; it's pretty blatantly a neurological side effect of the medication, as it also tends to start at a predictable time after taking the medicine and stop when it approaches 20-24 hours after a dose. So that's more than a little disconcerting.

I'd like to think the Effexor is working on my depression and anxiety, but the problem is that you just can't compare my stress/depression/anxiety levels during an 18 hour semester of graduate molecular biology courses to the levels after the semester has ended. (Even though I'm taking a few classes this summer, it's just no comparison.) I think I'm giving it the benefit of the doubt for the summer (as I do think it's been decreasing my appetite, which is welcome) but I'm not so sure I can handle the jaw stuff it's giving me -- waking up and spending the next 12 hours in huge amounts of jaw pain leading to tension headaches leading to migraines every day is not going to fly. I realized I've unconsciously gone to taking several 1-2 hour naps over a 12-14 hour period instead of having one long sleep, I think just so I can wake up for a little bit and give my jaw a rest; that's fine on the weekends, but probably isn't even going to be possible these next three weeks during my first summer class.

So basically, I'm still hoping it stops, but we're beginning week 4 of the drug and it hasn't yet, so I'm not hopeful. We'll see how long I can take the pain.
commotiocordis: (Seven/B'Elanna)
2011-05-11 02:33 pm

(no subject)

Also, Dad came down (surprise!) yesterday, which I didn't actually know about until he was already on his way, so we spent two hours frantically cleaning. Basically, he gave me a hug and then took me shopping for groceries and then made sure I'd made an appointment to actually go talk with my teachers rather than just blowing it off because I was too scared (his actual purpose of coming down was to pretty much march me in there if I hadn't; he was going to go in and sit in the hallway and wait for me today as moral support or something, but he wasn't feeling well, so ended up going home early this afternoon instead).

I don't like how . . . idk, old he is all of a sudden. I mean, he's 56 and people read him as my grandfather sometimes. I know it's just the cancer and then the lung infection thing and the billion surgeries (also, the anti-fungal meds are like mini!chemo; he's nauseated a lot still and is going to have to take the stuff for more than a year, so that's going to be fun), but he's tired a lot and he's weak and he's always sick and it upsets me. Dad's supposed to be the strongest person I know, you know? That's how fathers work. And he's not right now, even though he's not "actively" sick, and it's upsetting something substantial in my worldview, I think.

Obviously, there's nothing anyone can do about that and it's not his fault, etc. etc. etc., I just had some ~feelings.
commotiocordis: Green on black, an animated depiction of a normal heart rhythm on an ECG monitor. (Default)
2011-05-11 02:02 pm

(no subject)

Good things that will happen if I take anatomy again this summer
  1. My GPA will go up considerably

Bad things that will happen if I take anatomy again this summer
  1. I have school straight through the entire summer, from this Monday to August.

  2. I have to pay $1000+ for the anatomy class

  3. I have to take the 3x more expensive (and super speedy, which could be bad) orgo class to fit it in

  4. I have to get an A in it or it doesn't improve my GPA enough to have wasted the money


I think I know the answer, though. I can't afford it, and I'd feel bad asking my parents to pay $4000 for summer tuition. But on the other hand, getting into med school eventually vs not getting into med school. And if this were to, you know, help me become a doctor, it would be a good financial investment.



I'm so frustrated that by having my little freakout and getting on the medicine that made me pretty much non-functional (feeling better, btw. Side effects still killer, but at least not brainfog; anxiety still bad, but depression maybe a little better? Just realized this is the expected week for Alexandria's Requisite Monthly Suicidal Crisis and things are only slightly worse than baseline, so holy shit yessss), I've now stretched out my classes. I've got two finals tomorrow I haven't prepared at all for because I've been worried about making arrangements for the molecular biology class I missed a paper and two tests for; arrangements should be put in place by this afternoon, but I don't know when I'll be able to make up the work (when they will be here, when I will be here). I'd like to be able to do it in the next three weeks because I'll be down here taking another class (Forensic Child Psychology, which I'm hoping will be interesting), but who knows how much work I'll have for that class? I feel like I'm going to have to give them an ETA when I meet with the teachers this afternoon on when I want to take the two tests and turn in the paper, but until I know what's going to happen in the summer class, I don't really want to say.

Basically, Roommate came home all "KJASDLFKJASLDFKJASDKFJ I'M DONE OH MY GOD BEST EVER" and now I'm like "fuck. Why couldn't you have just pushed through it; you'd be done and not have to worry about this class anymore." Even though I know I couldn't have because I was so scatterbrained, and alternatingly super anxious and sedated, and basically worthless for pretty much two weeks, because I'm not feeling it now, it's hard to sympathize with past me. (I'm making perfect sense; you're just not keeping up.)
commotiocordis: Green on black, an animated depiction of a normal heart rhythm on an ECG monitor. (Default)
2011-05-09 02:59 am

(no subject)

Re: my final tomorrow. I'm just going to tell my professor that I can't take it yet; I've missed all but maybe 3 lectures for it, so it's going to take me a little while to catch up.

That sounds much more confident than I actually am.

I'm still terrified she's going to say no, and tell me to either take it now or get a zero. (I'd probably not get much above a zero were I to take it, so it's not much of a choice.) I should have emailed her and made an appointment to come in, because she did eventually pretty much offer to work out an arrangement to give me an Incomplete, but . . . yeah, I have no excuse for that except that talking to teachers triggers every bit of social anxiety and panic disorder in my body.


I really should start studying now anyway so I can take the test ~eventually (I'd like to get it done this week), but I'm freaking out too much about having to talk to my teachers. I know if I look at even just how much material I have to learn, I'll flip straight into panic attack mode.

The cure for this is mindless TV and knitting, and just taking it one stressful thing at a time. Talking to them now, test sometime in the future.

But at some point, I'm going to have to pussy up and stop coping with things that way, because hell, I'm putting off making arrangements to put things off, and that's obviously Really Quite Wrong.