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reQuest 2018 Update

We are now at the halfway point of our first reQuest. FIVE MORE DAYS TO ASK FOR REQUESTS! That's right, no new requests for writeups will be issued after midnight server time on 21 January. That gives us all ten days to try to fill our remaining requests before the end January.

In the meantime, don't forget to send your requests through to reQuest! Several reQuesters have almost filled all their requests already, and would love a few more. I'm really enjoying the process of reading through reQuesters' old writeups to come up with new requests - I've uncovered some absolute gems! 

We currently have 38 participants, who between them have filled 61 reQuests. It's like 60 beautiful New Year presents, just for us!

reQuesters who have filled the required 3 reQuests already are:

  1. BookReader
  2. etouffee
  3. Glowing Fish
  4. gnarl
  5. jessicaj
  6. Jet-Poop
  7. lizardinlaw
  8. Rancid_Pickle (no surprise that Mr Pickle has filled the most reQuests so far!)
  9. Swift (appropriately, Swift is our fastest reQuester, having joined on xx January and already up to xx filled reQuests!)
  10. TheAnglican
  11. Zephronias

Our reQuesters have been consistently amazeballs, writing high quality writeups, challenging themselves to write outside their usual styles, and taking the time to submit plenty of interesting reQuests for others.

And Silverai_me deserves special mention as the poor sucker who is sharing the admin work with me. That involves a lot of cleaning up when I inadvertently screw up the code. If anybody is feeling like complimenting and/or rewarding Team reQuest, please direct all your love Silwards.

I decided to be selfish last week on one thing and keep it to myself, to keep it quiet.

Oh, I expected lightning and thunder and boulders raining down from heaven.

Actually it made for a really delightful weekend.

How peculiar life is sometimes.

Seasons change. People change. 

***

To cap off her day Gretchen saw Brad's name on her phone. She wiped her eyes for what seemed like the thousandth time and answered his call. "Hi."

"Hi." He shut the door to his office and went to sit back down. "Parker said you were crying. I was just calling to check in on you."

She had just tried to pull herself together and now this? "I'm fine. You know what a drama queen I am."

"Drama queens have feelings too. I apologize if I'm intruding where I'm unwanted. I just thought I should call."

Seasons change, people change. I'll sacrifice tomorrow just to have you here today. The lyrics ran through her head again, bringing more tears to her eyes. "I'm just, having a day. How are you?"

"What's going on?"

"It's just, I'm fine honey. Really. I'm just emotional and hysterical." I hope she holds on a little longer.

"Okay. If there's anything you want to talk about, I'm here to listen."

"The way you did when we were going out? Don't make me laugh."

"I did listen. I'm not perfect, but I try to be a good listener."

"How did you end up with the perfect family and the great marriage? I try so hard, you just work and, and, I feel like my heart is breaking. You never loved me, Brent doesn't, none of the other guys I went out with did, Parker is the only person who seems to care about my feelings. He can't be your kid, he's too nice to others when they're down."

"According to you I was there when he was conceived. Why do you feel like people don't love you? That's not true."

"It is true. I can handle it. I'm a big girl."

"Did something happen that's making you question this?"

"I never go anywhere or do anything, what could have happened?"

"I have no idea which is why I'm asking. I want to be patient, but if you're just going to insult me, I have other people I could be spending time with, I would like to keep lines of communication open, if you're upset and I'm the cause, I'd like to know. I'm willing to apologize for things I did wrong, even if I didn't do anything wrong, if you're upset, maybe I did something inadvertantly."

"I'm thinking about telling Brent I want to get divorced."

"Is there a reason behind that?"

"He's not the person I married. He doesn't love me or Benji, he spends time with his friends and not us. He spends some time with us, but he doesn't love us no matter how many art projects he does. That's not love. That's him being selfish."

"He was selfish before you married him. I actually think he's a lot less selfish than he was. If you want him to spend more time with you, he needs a lot of time to himself. You knew that before you married him. I guess I would hate to see your marriage dissolve because of some fundamental misunderstanding between the two of you."

"There's just no talking to him. I've tried. He's got more walls between him and his emotions than you do. I'm tired of it. We have a baby now, he has to be a better father. He can't just sit in his room and listen to music or keep Parker up way past his bedtime because some friends of his dropped by unexpectedly. We have small children. He seems to think he can stay up as late as he wants and that doesn't affect the rest of us. Parker isn't athletic, even I can see that. Brent and his friends are just encouraging him to dream dreams that aren't going to come true. That's not okay. It doesn't matter how much he practices, he's just not good at sports. Sorry."

"Many people live long, productive, happy, and healthy lives without ever being involved in organized sports. Look at my dad. Think about Dan Parker. Your parents, the world needs everyone. Parker is three and he has more social skills than I ever will. To lament the fact that he's not terribly coordinated is to discount the wonderful qualities he has that have nothing to do with sports or activities. I personally would much rather have a child who is empathetic and cares about others than be the parent of the kid who scores goals and has no consideration for the way others may be feeling. I put a high value on harmony. He didn't get any of his personality from me. I could not care less if he's the worst player on every single team he's on for the rest of his life. Winning a game doesn't mean that your team has a winning culture. He has challenges of his own, but I think it's great that he told me you were sad and thought I should call. That's perceptive for a kid his age. He got that from his mom."

"People are going to pick on him when he goes to school."

"Fine. Then he'll learn how to deal with bullies. You can't protect people from adverse events or circumstances. Parker has a life many other children would like. He takes a lot for granted. Trials and tribulations develop people. The people whose lives are sheltered don't learn how to cope and move forward. Did you and Brent get into a fight?"

"No, not really. He doesn't even want to fight anymore."

"Is that such a terrible quality to have in a partner?"

"We're not partners. We're just living under the same roof. I should have listened to the people who told me not to go out with him. You think you're so different from him, but you're not really. He just fakes it better than you do. I was so stupid. Now I have two kids who are going to grow up with split families."

"What did he do that's making you so upset with him?"

"It's just who he is. He doesn't want to talk about things, he doesn't want to sit down and eat with us, he'll spend time in the pool or hang out with Benji on the floor, he doesn't love us. He says it sometimes, but he doesn't really mean it. I don't need more pottery or paintings. I need him to be a parent. Parker doesn't need to learn how to shake his booty. Brent is obsessed with exercise. He makes Benji do exercises and he's a baby for crying out loud."

"I think there's a difference between being a fanatic and incorporating movement into your day. I don't always love doing the things he wants to do either, physical therapy is a really tough job. People don't want to do the things that will promote growth and healing. Would it help if we took Parker and Benji so you could reconnect with him?"

"You take them enough. Save the offer for when he's a single parent, I don't know how he's going to manage that though. How is this my life?"

"I can think of many ways to instantly make it much worse. Be grateful for what you have. There are a lot of other women who would trade places with you in a heartbeat. You have loving parents, your in-laws help watch your children. You have no financial concerns. You live in a safe neighborhood with access to a well funded educational system. Natalie and Ryan would like another baby and they're not going to get one unless they get another miracle baby, or they adopt again. I would like another baby, Lana goes back and forth on the idea. You don't have to work. I think it's great that Brent has found a productive and healthy way to channel his creative energy. Maybe he's going a little overboard with that, you could try talking to him about it, but I think, and this is just my two cents on the issue, but people didn't really nurture his creative and artistic side. He was labeled as an athlete, he's athletic, but to portray him as just that is very limiting. Art was scary to him. It's still kind of scary to me. I think you really helped him by encouraging him to sketch more. That was good for him. Why don't you go do things with him? People would watch the kids for you if you need some time together."

"You can't talk to him when he's doing his thing. I've tried. He's lost in his own little world. He doesn't even know other people exist. It's so frustrating. Parker doesn't get into it much either. Brent is going to turn him off of art for good if he keeps insisting that Parker do things with him."

"There's always that danger. Brent is probably trying to compensate for being denied these opportunities when he was younger. I have to admit, he's way more creative than I ever gave him credit for being. I made fun of his cartoons. I regret that now. I'll apologize to him for being insensitive. That was immature and unkind of me."

"You're artistic too. Myra said so herself."

"That's a different role. That's really just matching the color of a new tooth to what someone already has in their mouth. That's not really creative. It takes a certain level of skill and training, but I really wouldn't call that being creative."

"Whatever. Myra said you were brilliant. Is she just saying that?"

"I doubt it. But I would say there's a difference between creative problem solving which is something I am good at and flawless technical execution which is an area where she excels. I'll never be the dentist she is. That whole field is blocked for me. I'm fortunate to have the job that I do."

"I thought you were a good dentist. Isn't there any way you can ever go back?"

"Not anymore. You have to have more wrist pronation than I do."

"Even in your right hand?"

"Yes. I wouldn't be able to write if his had happened to my left wrist. It sucks, but I'm fortunate it was my right wrist and not my left."

"I still think you should sue."

"What good would that do? Money isn't going to erase the past. It's not going to materially change my future. It's going to alienate a former patient who lives in the community that I see on a somewhat regular basis. It's going to cause more stress, create drama, and not accomplish anything positive."

"Well I just think you're owed something for the pain and suffering you went through. How did that bone get infected if he did everything he was supposed to during your surgery?"

"Infection is a post surgical complication, I would really rather not discuss this. It happened, I don't feel that this is malpractice or I would sue. It was, shit happens. In the past people lost limbs and died, I spent some time in the hospital and came home to my family. I was able to take time off of work and my job was waiting for me when I was able to return on a part time basis. I have family, friends, a wife who put up with me when I was far from my best. It could have been much much worse than it was."

"You always minimize everything. It was awful, just say it."

"It was awful. I'm not minimizing that. My wrist hurts every single minute of every single day. I can't pick up my own daughter with two hands and she doesn't even weigh ten pounds. It was my elbow after Parker was born, now it's my wrist. I'm afraid to have another baby if it means I'm going to have these types of permanent restrictions on what I can do that prevents me from being a larger part of their lives. What would help you get along better with Brent?"

"Nothing. As long as he wants to listen to sad music and upset Parker, I'm not having that anymore."

"Sometimes people are sad. Too much sadness can be indicative of a larger problem. You're complaining about him not expressing his emotions and then you don't want him to listen to sad music, I feel like there's some sort of disconnect there."

"Why would you listen to break up songs if you love your wife?"

"Maybe he just likes a particular song? I don't know. He's complicated."

"What am I supposed to do with him?"

"I don't know. Maybe just let him figure things out on his own. He's been through a lot. I think he's frustrated he can't do the things he used to do, he's really young to be retired if you want to call it that instead of permanently disabled. I would just continue to try being very loving and supportive while also communicating your needs to him and recognizing that he is going to be limited when it comes to meeting your emotional demands. Call your mom or your girlfriends if you need that type of need met. You're not going to get much from him, and I think you knew that going into this. If anything he is more compassionate because he's no longer able to navigate the world on his own the way that he could. He has this incredible athletic ability and a brain that short circuits on him when he least expects it. I would be sad too."

"I am so fucking sick and tired of black, white, and gray."

"Realize that you have a choice. He doesn't. That is his world. Go ahead and vent, but, maybe you would disagree with this, but he has come a long way. He's much calmer than he was. He doesn't try to seek approval or attention the way that he did in the past. I think he's made tremendous progress. I was skeptical about this whole art movement, he wasn't that great at first, it's like Parker and sports, you have to be willing to be completely horrible at something and stick with it to see any type of progress. You can give up and walk out, but he will meet someone else. How are you going to feel when Parker and Benji go over to his place and he has his hands all over another woman?"

"You're making me feel like this is all my fault."

"I'm sorry if that's your impression. I was trying to help you see things from another perspective. He feels things very deeply, I think you're looking for love that he's not expressing and overlooking the ways that he's trying very hard to show you that he does care. That's just my impression. I could be totally wrong. You don't want Benji to be fat so Brent builds activity into his day. I don't know, talk to his therapist. Just be with him, stop trying to get so much done and just be with them. I have a tendency to want to get things done, but really, am I going to be happier that the kitchen floor got swept before we went to bed, or am I going to treasure the moments I had when the four of us could sit on the couch and read together? Both are important, I can only make one of those things a priority at a time."

"Brent is allergic to reading. The other day he told Parker that recipes were just someone else's idea of how to make something and then Parker wanted to put pepper into the cookies we were making."

"Who knows, pepper might be an interesting addition. If not, then Parker would learn what happens when you put pepper into cookies. There are recipes out there that began as a cook trying to salvage something that was initially ruined. I just read an article on potstickers the other day that mentioned that. Someone is at my door, can we pick this conversation up later?"

"I guess. Thanks for calling. I'm sorry I'm such a wreck."

"Being a wreck is fine. Lashing out at others is hurtful and I would like an apology for that if you're truly sorry, but not right now. Take some time to think about it. Figure out what you want and how to get more of your needs met on your own or from people who can actually meet them. I'll either call or text when I'm done."

"Who are you meeting with now?"

"It's part of a surprise so I'd rather not say."

"Why is it okay for you to plan surprises for others when you hate them?"

"Because other people aren't me and may like surprises. Take care. You're a better parent than you realize. I'm grateful that Parker has someone teaching him how to be more empathetic and loving. Those are very important life skills."

"You can learn too."

"I know."

"Then do it."

"I'm trying. I have some books. Lana and I are working on it."

"In bed?"

"Sometimes. I couldn't do anything after I came home. I have to make up for that lost time somehow. I'll talk to you later. Hang in there."

"Thanks sweetie. You too. I love you."

"I love you too. Take care."

"You too."

***

Yesterday two of the women I work with were complaining about one of the guys at work. I listened to what they were saying, we had a conversation that went on for quite a while that gave me some things to think about. I prize efficiency and productivity, I get very annoyed and upset when I think that people are shirkers, slackers, lazy, or bringing the team down in other ways. I get a lot done in less time than others because I have a game plan in my head and they typically don't. I have a routine at work and I use time when I'm just standing there to think about the processes we have and how to make them better. There are things I'm great at, and then there are areas where I'm much weaker. Yesterday my unicorn friend said she would help me and then proceeded to wander around the store. I was annoyed with her until we had a conversation about why. She wanted to help an elderly woman, she came to me and presented the problem; she had agreed to help me, Don't let, the fire go to your head. but her heart was moving her to spend time with this woman. Maybe it's because my dad just died at a very young age after being in a home for years, but I want people to have as many moments of independence and freedom that they can and I believe that we have social responsibilities that are a higher priority than getting products out on the shelves in a timely fashion.

One of the reasons they were mad is because this guy didn't show up for his shift when he was scheduled on Sunday. That would bug me too and I think that's a legitimate complaint. People should be on time and ready to work when they're on the clock, however, both of them have a tendency to run late, my one friend routinely ignores her break time limits and I have a real problem when people are getting down on others in areas where they don't have a lot of mastery. I made a comment about them being on his case for running late when a woman in my department is chronically late without anyone getting on her for lack of punctuality. What really infuriates me, and I made this point to them, is that they're mad at him for some of the exact same reasons I don't get along with people in my department, but they feel like their position is justified, and mine isn't, and I told them that they can't have it both ways. Don't think, sorry is easily said. They both told me that my department could have him and then I asked them if they had tried talking to him about some of these issues that they have because that's what they're always telling me to do when I complain about people in my department, and to be fair to me, I have tried talking to the people I have trouble with, the last time I tried this one of them ended up getting promoted. Don't say, words you're going to regret.

Both of these women are pretty good at their jobs, but I want to go back to a point I made earlier. I am the maker of rules. We need people who are efficient, and I think they're being hard on him because from my point of view he is more efficient than he's getting credit for, one of them complained that he talks to people and to me this is entirely missing the point of what our store stands for and why people shop there in the first place. There are a ton of cashiers who can get you in and out of a place expediently, there aren't very many that you can have really deep and profound coversations with, this is a gift of his, and I think it's a beautiful and wonderful thing that should be promoted and rewarded rather than viewed as a liability. I could have told people from the second I laid eyes on that guy that he wasn't going to win awards for items scanned per minute if this is a number our store even tracks. He's very methodical, steady, and I think he's accurate too, but I don't have a lot of evidence to support that claim. I think there is a fine line between having a conversation with someone that builds a relationship and people getting frustrated that someone isn't as fast as they would like. I've gotten into trouble for being overly talkative, the thing is, relationships and trust take time to build. What's more important, that I get products on the shelves, or that I guide someone through a tough conversation where they end up breaking down into tears on the sales floor? Both are important, it's a matter of prioritizing which is more important at any given moment.

We have so many people with sharp edges at work. We need the softer types to remind us that speed isn't always a priority. Dealing with fools. We need talkers, we need listeners, we need people to invest in others, we need people who are performing their jobs well and this can be another gray area as well. Not everyone can be bubbly and cheerful all the time. I don't think it's fair to put someone in a job that is a terrible fit for their personality and then rail at them because they weren't set up for success in the first place. Don't try, turning the tables instead.This guy is a peace keeper at work. He brings harmony, he's pretty drama free, and I think that because he's quiet he has a tendency to get overlooked for the things he brings to the table. I get really tired of people who can only see things from their point of view, I realize that we all have that as a default, but I don't like it when people can't translate difficulties. Everyone's life is hard to them. We're all going through things we wish we wouldn't. Why are we giving a woman in her fifties who is a member of management a free pass when someone who is a much better employee as far as getting along with others goes is being put down for some of the exact same complaints? Our HR manager runs late, but nobody calls her on it so she gets away with it. 

My take on the situation is that either people are valuable employees and we want to keep them, flaws and all, or we find ways to replace them if things are just not working out. To me there is a very big difference between someone who runs late and does their job when they're on the floor, and someone who is manipulative, conniving, power trips, and gaslights others. I've said this before, but our company is terrible about praising others and noticing what they do well. I love working with this guy, and it isn't just because I think he's sexy. I think he's sexy because we do work so well together, or at least we did. He's a big ideas person and I value that in others. People are down on him for his ideas and that doesn't make sense to me either. Most of my childhood was people telling me I couldn't do things, or that the things I wanted to do were expensive, stupid, dangerous, or wrong. I went to a safe school instead of going someplace cool. I bought safe cars because I didn't feel like I deserved a really incredible piece of machinery. I was married to a man who didn't take care of the vehicles he had, he got the nice vehicles and I drove things that were more reliable and responsible. I was the car lover in the relationship, but he was the one who came home with keys to things he liked rather than things that fit into our budget and he's still that way today.

I think people need to be encouraged rather than discouraged. I have a daughter who is a thrill seeker. This is wired into her personality. Both of her parents have taken risks others wouldn't, and there have been times when we've had to pay incredibly high prices for going places, doing things, and saying what others would have left unsaid. Constantly telling people that their ideas suck doesn't stop them from coming up with new ones, it teaches them that it's better to keep things inside instead of sharing them with others. My parents forced music lessons on me. I let my daughters quit rather than fight about practicing. They have talent I don't so that was hard for me, but harmony at home was more important to me than having children who can play the clarinet well, but profoundly resent their parents. My children both have a lot of gifts and talents, I have no idea what kind of grades they get in school because I never look. I don't care what grades they get, grades are a pretty useless metric to me so I don't pay attention to them and I doubt their father is real concerned with them either given what I know about him and I know quite a bit, but not as much as I wish I would have when we were together. My daughter is a much happier person now that she works in grocery instead of as a cashier. It's a demanding routine job and not everyone is going to thrive as a cashier.

The other day I told my former PT to call me if he ever needed a cheerleader. I want to tell this guy to dream his dreams and live his life the way that he wants. He's an idea person, he's a thinker, I think he'd be better off if he could pair with an executor, but he has to figure out how to make things work for him. Nobody can tell him what to think, I wouldn't ever put someone like him in a management role because I don't see that as a great gift of his, but he's apparently able to blend well with many other personalities and it really makes me angry that he doesn't get credit for his interpersonal skills. The other day I was reading about the water type as an element in Chinese culture. These people flow down, they don't resist, they aren't demanding, high maintenance, controlling, or very aggressive. They fill in the cracks around others and they don't attract a lot of attention which might be why I notice them more than others who are more flamboyant. I'm attracted to these people because I'm a fire type. I can burn intensely hot, I need the water people to cool me down and help me chill out. I go to these people when I need to get control of my temper because I've said many things I regret. I've been a bridge burner in the past and I'm trying hard to learn from my mistakes while remaining true to myself. 

According to one book I own I have a daughter who is a water type, and one who is a wind personality. Air can turn embers into a blaze, it can also spread a fire that's already gone out of control. Air can help dry up soggy people, fire can warm up the water people when they get too cold and damp, earth types ground us, everyone is needed. We all have a role or we wouldn't be here. Part of me knows what you're thinking. I'm glad I was there for that conversation yesterday. I think I made some points that others didn't consider, I think I helped balance the scales, and I think I helped give others some perspective that was needed. Don't cry, I ain't changing my mind. I think it's good to have people like me who are big picture thinkers, we also need detail people who can get to a level I typically don't. Last night I was really sad for some reason. I woke up feeling the same way, conflict bothers me, especially when I think it's directed at people who aren't there to defend themselves. Yesterday one of the guys who works in produce asked about the assistant manager's dog again, I like healthy relationships and I see the relationship between him and the assistant manager as very unhealthy since I think it's affecting her marriage and she's getting things from him she shouldn't be. 

Yesterday one of the women I work with told me that her stomach was bothering her. I had compassion for my friend who said that hers was upset, it's harder for me with this woman, but I made the effort because I want to be able to practice what I'm always preaching. I need to get in touch with my softer side. I have one, it's not a great strength of mine, but I know that this is an area I can more fully develop if I focus and work at it. Sex is the easy part for me, intimacy, sharing myself, what I think - I'm okay at that, what I feel, that's an entirely different matter. It is hard for me to be objective because my world tends to be very black or white. I need the people who can fill in the shades of gray for me. I like that guy a lot and sometimes I think I shouldn't which is kind of silly because I would tell anyone else, you like who you like, what you do about it is another matter and I think that's where I'm stuck. He doesn't want to be anything more than friends, but we're not really friends, or at least I don't think that we are. I don't really have a way to process this and that kind of bothers me since I like relationships to be neater and more orderly inside of my head.

Part of me thinks I should just walk away, let him go, and move along. I could do that, but it would be very hard and I'm not sure it's in my best interest either. I believe that people are in our lives for a reason, you've taken lots of chances before, I think he's a beautiful person on the inside and out, I can see a lot of reasons to keep believing in him, even if something happened that meant I never saw him again, I would remember him and the impact he had on my life. He helped me connect with and understand women in my life. I would have written him off without another thought after he friend zoned me because I was furious with him for that. Setting the boundary was fine, it felt like a lie to me and that really made me mad. His words and actions didn't match and I have real problems with people who say one thing and do another. I need people to be consistent with me, and it didn't seem like he was. I probably was too hard on him, but it felt like he had played a game with me and my emotions and I didn't like that either. I was legitimately worried he was either contemplating suicide, or had very dark and depressed thoughts, the friend zoning felt like a slap in the face to me.

Looking back I don't think either of us handled it as well as we could have, I think we were talking past each other and I'll accept my share of the blame there because I can easily see his point of view. I probably was freaking him out and I should have backed off, that was my mistake and I've already apologized, but I would repeat that and be more specific if I thought it would help, but I'm not really sure it would. I think neither of us are used to meeting people like the other person, things that had worked for us in the past didn't, I think we were both very confused about a lot of things, and since we can't sit down and talk, we have this kind of peace treaty at work where we try to be polite to the other person when they cross our path. We both have moods, we both have days, it's kind of interesting to see someone who has some of the personality traits I do express them so differently than I do. I admire him, I respect him, I care about him, I think a great deal of him, maybe I think I have to make a decision about something when just letting things be is a better strategy.

Today I feel like I need to do something very girly, the only problem is I'm not sure what to do, when to do whatever this is, how to go about it, or if this is even what I really need to be doing right now. It feels like the right and wrong thing to be doing. A deep part of me does not want to do this which probably means it is what I should be doing. Today I feel like I can be a more loving person without sacrificing who I am and what makes me unique. Yesterday one of the women I work with said she didn't want to hurt his feelings by bringing up a work related issue. I said the more loving thing to do was to present her case to him instead of just bitching about it behind his back. I think he can sense when people are irritated or annoyed, maybe I'm giving him credit he doesn't deserve, I don't think he's great when it comes to interpreting how others are feeling, I could be wrong about that too, I think he's sensitive to nuances and shifts in attitudes and behaviors, and I think whether his feelings are hurt or not, she needs to bring up things when they're bothering her. You can't control how others feel. Maybe his feelings would be hurt, but I think he would understand she's coming from a position of wanting him to be a better person rather than just yelling at him for not following some unwritten rules she apparently has for bagging groceries. I haven't seen this problem, but she should bring it up if it's a concern she has rather than ignoring it and hoping it magically goes away.

I feel better than I did. Sometimes this type of music helps me get to issues I can't normally access. I write until I think I have a handle on an issue. Using my fictional characters helps me work through things in my real life, it also helps me escape. I feel like I did something cool, like I had a breakthrough moment, like I learned a new skill that I can now use, like I gave myself permission to be less rigid and thinking and more fluid and feeling. Just what the truth is, I can't say anymore. I love to write, I wish I could do more with it, but I don't know what more would really help and maybe that's more of me thinking I have to do and achieve rather than just be. Just what you want to be, you will be in the end. I'm so happy I have the ability to create scenarios in my head, the world of fiction is so cool to me, I have control, but it doesn't feel complete, like my characters and I have to have dialogue between who they are, what I want to write about, and the story doesn't have to have a happy or a sad ending because life is both joyful and tearful. I crave that kind of authenticity even if the duality is troublesome at times. And I love you. Having characters who are me, who go through some of the things I'm going through and have been through, it's a gift I can give to myself, and today, that's me taking care of and loving me, at this moment, for who I am, not who I can be, who I have been, or what I think I could or should be. Acceptance of myself is rare, but cool. Hopefully I can do something with this...

Xxoo,

J

***

Her: "Hey, can I run something past you. I need a sane person's advice."

Me: "Hold on, I'll see if I can find a sane person nearby."

***

  1. "Hey, do you have a moment? I want
  2. to change my mind about something 
  3. I said in the past. You look good in black, that
  4. wasn't a lie, but the truth is you look great 
  5. in gray and I think you'd be the guy
  6. who could totally rock a pink shirt if you 
  7. owned a casual one in the right shade. Just 
  8. being around you makes me feel better, 
  9. I'm sorry if that makes you uncomfortable. 
  10. I try to keep my distance, management 
  11. warned me not to talk to you, I'm torn
  12. between telling them to fuck off, and
  13. realizing that if you went to them you
  14. must have had an exceptionally good
  15. reason at the time. I think we've both
  16. made some mistakes. I want to go
  17. forward, I miss talking to you, I
  18. think you're very perceptive, you
  19. have stunning insights, your sense of
  20. humor is what I miss the most.
  21. Lately I've been thinking, about
  22. a lot of things. It's funny, I had to
  23. get used to an overload of black
  24. to realize that what I was missing 
  25. most was a softer, more nuanced
  26. exploration of pearly irridescent pink. 
  27. Keep being you, I hardly even 
  28. recognize the person you are today. 
  29. You have come a long way since the
  30. day we first met. Kudos..."
  31. Xoxo, (I miss hugging and kssing you)
  32. Jessica J

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