Aliens Are Here

At least they were in my dream.

I remember that at first everyone was afraid and hiding, partly due to the fact that these aliens were invisible. We knew they were in the air, but we couldn’t see them. When they arrived, they turned the sky a light pale pink color. And they weren’t just in specific areas – they saturated Earth’s atmosphere.

Folks hid anywhere they could think of; stores, under cars, in cars, at home, at work, at school – everywhere. I was hiding with a cat in an old civilian Scout vehicle. (My dad had one of these when I was little.) I’d thrown a blanket over the outside of the windshield to offer myself some privacy. I was using the vehicle as a residence – it was full of clothes and whatnot. At one point – I opened the passenger front door to go out and some strange woman stood outside the door. “Can I help you?” I asked. “I want your parking space.” She answered.

Someone else standing a few feet away overheard her and immediately barked, “You can’t have her spot. She just parked there a couple of hours ago.” My eyes did not waver from this woman. “I am not moving my car. Go find your own parking spot.” She didn’t say another word. As I walked away, I noticed bulldozers in the distance flattening large mounds of earth just outside town. And I realized they were flattening the ground so that civilians could go stand out there to watch what was going on. Except nothing really seemed to be going on. The sky was pale pink, but other than that – nothing had really changed, except for this palpable awareness that we had company.

I’m not sure how everyone knew that the pink sky meant aliens had arrived, but we all knew. And eventually – everyone stopped hiding and started sort of creeping around. Ever cautious.

At one point I went to a family’s home with this cat to drop of an emerald green sculpture/artifact of some kind. I don’t recall what it looked like, but it was small and fit in my hand. I was letting this family look after it for – some weird reason. When I went back to retrieve it, they’d accidently broken it in half and I was south of pissed off. I was so angry about it that I started taking swings at the patriarch of this family. He was a 70 something older man, but healthy and still strong. I was taking swings at him from the side of my right fist. I’d pull my arm in toward my chest and then swing it out right up against his face. And it landed exactly where I wanted it to each time. But he never tried to hit back and I finally left.

After that the dream changed and I was seated with a woman who, I believe, had been a news anchor before the aliens arrived. We didn’t know each other and she was deeply saddened by something – so much so – that I could feel her pain. She was seated at the head of a white conference table and her grief felt as vast as an ocean. Lots of sad. And I could feel all of it. And I got really sad. And I asked her, “What is going on? Why are you so sad?”

“We’re all going to die.” She said.

“Wait, what?”

“We have about two days. That’s it.”

“Well, how on earth do you know that?” I asked.

She couldn’t tell me. She couldn’t tell me how we were all going to die either.

“Well. This is a bummer. I’m not prepared for that!.”

“No one is.” She said. “No one knows.”

And I frantically thought, Aliens are totally welcome here to come visit and stuff. I’m a hospitable person. But they can’t KILL us! We live down here! This is our home! We don’t have anywhere else to go! And then I was overcome with my own grief. I wasn’t ready to die yet, I still had stuff to do. I wasn’t even concerned with HOW we were all going to die, I just wasn’t ready to stop being ME yet.

And then I woke up. It’s interesting how feelings from dreams can linger … I wonder if our spirits experience any sort of shock when we die. Especially when we die violently or suddenly. Not only is the planet our home, but so are our bodies. We live in these things.

Hm. Well … my coffee sure is good today!! 🙂

Through Louisiana and Up Past Canada

That’s what a friend of mine just said about my verbal deliveries. He said that I gather momentum and power and – POW!! SUCKER PUNCH THAT INFORMATION! As he said this he demonstrated with his arm … dropped it to the ground and did a mock roundhouse sucker punch to my right temple.

“Am I really that direct?”

HMPH!! Shit, Jennifer!!”

Apparently I need to work on my delivery technique. Apparently I could stand to be a wee bit more delicate. I come with a take it or leave it attitude. I come with a “LOOK. Here is the fact as I see it. (Insert my verbal sucker punch) And my reaction to your reaction is, “Ooooo. You don’t like that? And this is my problem becauussseee…?” (This is rhetorical.)

I don’t know how I got to be so blunt. So – glaring – because it’s not like I don’t care. I wouldn’t say anything at all if I didn’t care. I suppose my directness comes partly from the fact that LIFE isn’t exactly gentle – or it hasn’t been with me anyway. That makes sense. But I do recognize a plethora of tender moments are experienced – regularly -throughout the world. A mother with her baby is the first thing that comes to mind – and not just a human mother. Another example is a loving couple. Or when folks show others compassion and empathy (when it’s appropriate). These moments are extremely touching.

I remember my grandmother used to tell me all the time that I was honest to a fault. I didn’t even think that was possible, but I’m quite certain that she and this friend of mine are talking about the same thing.

I’ll work on my delivery. I’m not making any promises, but I’ll look at IT and I’m aware of it. THANKS!

The Problem With SELF-CONTROL

Isn’t that we don’t have any. It’s bountiful within each and every one of us, yet completely underutilized. Why? I don’t know! Self-control is right at our fingertips, but how many of us use it?

We don’t go to the gym because we don’t feel like it. We eat the cookie because we want it. We don’t stay sober because it’s too hard. We yell instead of use diplomacy because yelling feels better.

Sigh. I still have hope for us as a species.

Look, I’m not suggesting I’m the role model of perfection here, I have a history of destruction and loss behind me. It’s just become all too clear that a lot of folks act as though they’re at the mercy of emotions, whims and cravings when they’re not – they just relinquish control to these impulses. Self-control has always been and is always an option.

That’s all.

Grossly Negligent

Why is it so easy for some folks to instantly accept and believe people they respect without questioning them? Why does someone’s title make them an authority on a subject they’ve never even experienced first hand before? Why are we so timid sometimes when it comes to voicing our own beliefs and opinions and standing up for ourselves? What do we have to lose by speaking our truths? Wouldn’t this be an example of self-care in action?

What is so hard about being authentic? Is it that most of us don’t truly know ourselves because we’ve accepted society’s image of us? Is it that we’ve allowed ourselves to be molded rather than becoming the sculptor of our own lives?

It’s sorta sad. I don’t really get it. I realized a long long time ago that my school friends were WAY off when they tried to categorize and define me. I rebelled and shot them down (not literally – I used my words). Since then, I’ve always taken the position that NOBODY is going to tell me who I am. Ever. Not my friends, not my boyfriend, not a doctor or a therapist, not my family, not even my parents. I’m the only one occupying this body and this mind. I get to decide who I want to be and then I get to be that person with respect to the truth. I am an honorable woman. I am a woman of integrity. I am sober. I am compassionate. I am smart. These sorts of qualities comprise parts of my persona.

Everybody has this power. This gift – to define themselves by becoming who they choose to be.

Someone’s Confused

By the time folks “decide” to get sober, they’ve likely been tossing around the idea of quitting drinking for a long long time. There’s always a part of us, regardless how small it is, that doesn’t want to stop. And so we engage it, become confused by it, think about it, talk about it, and eventually – some of us are finally able to override it.

There is one stage to getting sober – stop drinking.

There is one stage to moving into recovery – become someone who does not drink. Period. No other words are necessary. No overthinking it is necessary.

I don’t drink. That’s all a person has to say (and mean without reservation) to him/herself or to another person. Nothing else. Explanations and reasons are personal and don’t need to be shared.

Our addiction lives inside us. It’s my position that it lives in our minds. One of the worst things we can do when our intention is to overcome an addiction – is to give it stage time in our minds by engaging it.

Worms Are Squishy

I SHALL CALL IT SQUISHY!

They’re spirit guides (in addition to other things like bird snacks) – did you know that? Not permanently of course because spirit guides are always changing (spirit guides come and go as opposed to our spirit totem and guardian angel, who hang out with us for the duration).

Apparently, right now, I’m being guided by the Worm spirit guide. This one totally escaped me and I had to google it. According to both trustedpsychicmediums.com and wildspeak.com, the earthworm is our personal spiritual groundskeeper. Not only does this little dude/ette nourish the earth, it brings us nourishment from the earth. Pretty corncoolio, eh? I just so happen to like and appreciate the earth. It’s righteous.

It is suggested that when worm pops into our lives (it does this by repeatedly showing up or being noticed by us) that we act on it’s presence by interacting with the earth. Getting down and dirty so-to-speak. Do a little gardening. Plant some stuff. Dig up some stuff. You get the idea. The earth is alive – it’s not just a spinning rock out in space. By interacting with the planet, literally on our hands and knees, we glean energy and nourishment from the earth directly. Now how sweet is that?

I’m not sure how I’m supposed to pull this off though – I live on the second floor and don’t have a yard or garden…

This squishy little worm is also to remind us of water sources, and to be mindful of just how limited our fresh water sources are. We’ve only got so much, and it’s crucial to put it into our bodies. Throughout the day. Even when we aren’t feeling thirsty.

And finally, Worm represents – among a few other things that I’ll leave out for you to discover on your own – a pivotal point in one’s healing and regeneration. This is a particularly fascinating word when it’s applied to humans and how it works in our lives – because it does. It’s actually quite miraculous. Not only can and do we regenerate parts of our bodies that are tangible, we regenerate our feelings, emotions and thoughts. There are other words for this, but these things are, in fact, regenerating.

Who’s Responsible?

My new chair. I think I like it!!! Starla and Buster sure do!

A friend of mine just asked me to write a post about responsibility. I thought that was a terrible idea because I was content in my new chair and I didn’t want to move from my purring babies. But, the chair isn’t going anywhere, neither are they, and I haven’t written anything all day, so here I go.

We passed a homeless woman today who yelled a profanity at my friend even though he was stopping for her to let her cross the street with her shopping cart full of – stuff. He didn’t have a stop sign, but he was stopping for her anyway because that’s the kind of hero he is. He gives pedestrians the right of way even when they don’t have it.

She barked at him because it seemed he had unintentionally scared her and instead of crossing in front of his car, she maneuvered her things behind it. Eugene, the college town we live in, is teeming with homeless folks. Homeless camps occupy countless corners, parks, roadsides and underpasses throughout the city. Anyway, my friend and I got into a discussion about who was responsible for her position and condition in society.

Did she do it to herself or did someone or someones make her the way she is? Was she molded or did she agree to be molded?

My friend said, “I know Jennifer, you think she’s responsible for her situation. But what if she had had a pimp who introduced her to drugs? What if he made sure she continued taking them long enough to get hooked? Is she responsible then or is he?” Assuming the woman had had a pimp in her past and that her pimp was a he.

Then the conversation turned to sobriety and recovery (my friend has been clean and sober for 27 years). Who’s responsible for our sobriety? Who’s responsible for our recovery? I do not agree that they’re one and the same. Sobriety requires that we don’t drink alcohol. That’s it. Recovery requires that we become a non-drinker. Not drinking is not the same thing as BECOMING something new – something different.

Outward tasks/things/places like meetings, reading, conversations, church, inpatient treatment, jail, forums and – insert an activity here – can all contribute to one’s success in sobriety – but they aren’t ultimately responsible for it. And sometimes none of these things work. Each one of us is responsible for not reaching for alcohol. The only true power we have to not drink must come from inside us – because that’s where our addiction resides.

The same holds true for recovery. Getting sober is half of the equation. The second half – recovery – requires a mental shift in perception, attitude, and relation to alcohol & drinking. These positions come about internally. “I don’t drink.” No one can put or force a person into this position with these words. Each one of us is responsible for getting there. Wanting to be there isn’t enough. We have to transform.

My friend loves to debate and is never short on “Well ….” or “But what about …”

Thoughts? Opinions? Comments?

Albino Grasshopper

White Grasshoppers CAN Jump!

“Well Hi there little guy.” I leaned over and said to the grasshopper.

It attacked my face.

I about fell over backward. A young child passing me on his Hot Wheels looked to his mother in horror. I truly behaved like I’d lost my mind -swatting at my face, knocking my glasses off, yelling obscenities. I yelled at his mother “IS IT IN MY HAIR?!”

Jeez. What a day!

Grouchy

The following is an excerpt from chapter 4 in my memoir, Saturation.

amazon.com/author/jenniferplace

Something else was going on with me as well, something I didn’t share with anyone – not even myself in a one-on-one, self-talk sort of way. Until my relationship with Dick, I’d managed fairly well as a high functioning alcoholic. When I moved in with him, I took my drinking to an entirely new level – one I didn’t know I could reach. My kids became privy to seeing and hearing things from me they’d not seen nor heard; specifically my uncontrolled rage. Raging out on Dick was easy – I couldn’t stand him. But in addition to this, I became someone my kid’s didn’t know – a stumbling, slurring, aggressive alien. And for this, my heart will never mend. Drunk or not – behaving the way I did in front of my children is not something I can forgive.

When I was very drunk and moody, my kids would call me grouchy. “Mom, you’re grouchy again.” Or “You better wait, Mom’s grouchy.” It’s beyond repugnant for me to share this here, but perhaps reading this will snap a better person into at least thinking about sobriety. I would tell my sons that I was just tired, but tired people don’t behave the way I did and they knew this. My sons were way too smart for such generic lines.

After serious contemplation, I believe I decided then, on an unconscious level, that I had to protect them from me. That’s what any good mother does – she protects her children. But I wasn’t so good. Not by a long shot. So I did the unthinkable …

She Doesn’t Have Opposable Thumbs

This one isn’t mine – mine had my phone!

That’s what I had to tell my sweet baby kitty when she was going after my Words With Friends game on my phone, “You don’t have opposable thumbs sweet baby!”. Bless her sweet little paws. She’s just going to have to watch me play.

The Cutest Piece of Toast

Breakfast of Champions (not the tomatoes)!!

This isn’t just toast. It’s Cinnamon Raisin toast and it was all of five bites big. So tiny and sweet and cute and delicious. It paired just perfectly with a half glass of Almond Milk. I’m so happy!

I Want To Be Immortal

Just so I can sleep on this mattress every night – forever. It’s that ridiculously comfortable.

I never want to get out of bed. Just for the record – it’s a 12 inch memory foam by Nora. Didn’t know this could be possible, but I think I’m falling in love with it.

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