I forgot I contributed to this! Adding it to my CV/resume. Carry on

Another share – I had a weird day on Saturday. A while ago, perhaps a year ago, I ended a 37 yearish friendship because I needed space from old patterns (as I deal with my own messes and reconcile who I am in this life). This friend contacted my father this past week. Then my old friend’s father reached out to my father to appeal to me to “reach out” and let “my oldest dearest friend back in and not just block him out.”

Maybe I am an asshole – I don’t know.

Here is what I do know: I have known him since I was young. He is a very old pattern. I do not really understand him, He FOR SURE does not understand me. About a year ago, he sent a text to me with a picture of a letter I sent to him when I was probably 19 years old. It was… awkward. It felt… not good. My immediate thoughts were that he does not know me, he is not a friend to me and I need out of this pattern or I am going to suffocate. I blocked him on all platforms and deleted him from my phone. Honestly, I did not think he would notice. I thought in a few years I might run into him or his wife at something whenever I get back to my hometown and then be like, “oh, haha, I am such a dummy I seem to have disconnected somehow from people including you! How the heck are you?” You know, post COVID and in theory have my own shit figured out. But, it sounds like he has been trying to reach me.

Again – old patterns resurfaced. My father says, “do the thing.” I say, “yes, daddy,” and do the thing (mostly).

I sent this text: “I spoke with my father. Thank you for being kind to him. I’m working through some things and have not been receiving messages/calls so I did not know you were trying to reach me. Hope you and your family are well.”

His response: “Thanks for reaching back to me. I miss you. Hope you are going to be ok. Love you gunk, always.”

And that is that. I checked in with my college roommate whom I’ve known almost as long as I have known disconnected friend, and she has permissed me to officially let this go and be and so I shall do my very best.

Life is weird. If I am a jerk, then I suppose I am. It is too hard for me to hold space for this, so I thank you for holding it with me. Also, no worries – not in a million years will he be reading this lol

Love, Ms. Herisme xoxo

ps Final share – I am going to eat spinach for lunch to give my heart strength and protection today, which is also MrexH’s birthday. I’m fine – I’m sure I’m fine (infinity repeats while spinning on yoga ball chair listening to this)

S (hi) T

I am back for a hawt minute – or a cold minute, a windy minute, a smooth minute, a tap dance minute a sparkling minute or just a damn minute.

I would like to share something with you. The blog needed to rest because I panicked. WordPress provides stats on the blog which track the countries, downloads and visits to the blog through the WordPress platform. For whatever reason, I began to look at the stats tracker after each post. At some point before the holidays, the posts were being viewed and the audio downloaded like crazy to places like England, Ireland, Sweden, Germany, Finland, Canada… also Pakistan and China, but I assume those are bots (apologies for this gross cultural bias).

I mentioned these upticks to a friend who suggested that this might be because I was tagging and linking to prominent people’s names/websites. She also said that any decent PR firm would be tracking their client’s or potential client’s hits as well. This was unsettling information to me. I am not sure why since I do not know and will not personally know any of these people. I was/am just unsettled and then began checking the tracker more frequently to see if I tagged certain things. Would there be views or downloads from particular countries etc.? And also WHO the HECK are these people?!? Are they you? Again, I am not quite sure why exactly this is unsettling. If I am so bothered, why am I posting on a public blog to the InterWorlds?

The other thing I noticed was that as the anxiety surrounding the constant crazy during the White House transition, my voice changed from a sharing voice to a telling voice. I have no authority to be telling anybody anything, yet I did it anyway and this too unsettled me. Who the absolute f^ck did I think I was telling people things?!? Why are people in England listening to the telling? Why do I care?

I have no idea about any of it.

Shares: I intend on getting the COVID vaccine asap. When I send the next batch of court ordered weekly progress reports to MrexH regarding SonHerisme, I will be sending 7 reports including the 268th progress report. 268 weeks of sending reports. Also, SonHerisme is being asked to zoom with MrexH and show him his lego collection. He has not seen his father in real life since the first week of September 2014. Everything is feeling unsettled atm. I mean, I’m sure we are fine. Everything is fine – right? I mean, people are doing the things, right? People are arguing over chores, falling in love, preparing tea and meals for each other, planning lives, doing the things (COVID sensitively) and all that – right? Getting tires checked? Reading fiction, watching television shows? We’re doing that stuff out there, humans – right?

I know it is my ego pulling me into anxiety (New Earth whoop! whoop! *high five* plus dancey dance). Trying to do the next right thing.

So that is exactly that for now. Back to present and breath and adding embroidery to salvage a beloved shirt.

Today is sunny with an evening chance of wintry mix and a guaranteed Friday night Pizza fest! I hope that if you are from England, France, Finland, India, right close to me or wherever and you have stumbled upon my little moment in the InterWorlds, that you are feeling loved, blessed, comforted and full of health!

Love, Ms. Herisme xoxo

#carryonpeacewarriors #carryonhealthwarriors

ps. SonHerisme, 12, has hit 6ft tall, size 13 shoes and I am having deep deep super deep pregnancy/baby wants. This will not happen in this lifetime *sigh.* I thought my life would be full of having babies running wild. It was not meant to be for me. Maybe this is my final grief stage for what never will be. I have a friend who is a mommy to six sweet things and I am taking dinner to them tonight. This will have to be enough for me and my singleton SonHerisme. I can do hard things.

Also this is Straight Buggin’!


big coat for cold days
(or listen here)

Darlings, Loves, Friends, Whatever-Wherever-You-Are’s,

I do not know what I have been doing with this blog.

I do not know what I was expecting with this blog.

I do know that whatever it was, I have not found it.

I need to take a step back.

Thank you for reading my writing and/or listening to my squelched voicebox. Thank you even if you are an automatic download bot or spambot. Just, well, thank you.

Love, Ms. Herisme xoxo #carryonpeacewarriors #carryonwritingwarriors #carryonhealthwarriors

(added to see if my theory on an algorithm is poked – Greg Davies)


(or listen here)

This morning I awakened around 5:30am. I have trouble sleeping. I was awake at 2:30am the first time.

What I did not do – I did not check Twitter. I did not check Twitter at 2:30am, I did not check Twitter at 5:30am. I have yet to pop over to Twitter this morning (currently 9:22am).

I checked my email this morning at 9am (post celery juice, lemon juice, egg in the nest with avocado, and very dark very smooth very elixir of the g-ds coffee breakfast natch) and saw that I had not checked any of my email accounts since 2pm yesterday.

I did go to the supertastic plastic Facebook and ‘liked’ all of the people’s cute pics of their inaugural celebrations! Instagram was a hard pass because of the ads. Something has changed with Instagram, and Facebook, over the past few months and they seem to be pulling algorithms maybe from everywhere, including my connections lists to pop certain ads into my feed. Most of the time I can scroll on by, but sometimes the ads just punch me in the gut (oooh, look at the people falling in love on this show! look at the child being abducted on that show! look at this gorgeous holiday destination that you will never ever ever go to!). Somehow it’s more obvious on Instagram to me. Probably because I get so distracted with all of the cute pics and updates on Facebook of my real life connections. Whereas my Instagram feed is more design, architecture, museums, books, authors, social justice advocates, poets, artists – so perhaps a bit more bohemian than the everyday.

Aaaaaaand my Ms. Distraction Delilah point is… that I did not need instant Twitter this morning. I did not need my email instantly.

Since April 2014, I have used social media and email as pieces of protection for SonHerisme and myself. MrexH was on there posting vague threats for some time (which became more specific and in writing later). Email was my lifeline to my attorney and SonHerisme’s attorney. I had to keep myself aware of what was going on for safety, as a touchstone with the reality of what was happening because everything was very disorienting and honestly truly unbelievable.

About 18 months into that untenable unpredictable potentially lethal situation, we had a presidential election where we voted into office a narcissistic abusive asshole. My parents, knowing my situation, observing me in real time and supporting me, voted for that abhorrent human anyway. More disorienting brain twists.

Once the situation with MrexH abated somewhat, my mother asked to move in with me “for a few weeks,” in late 2016 (spoiler alert – she is still living with me) to get some medical treatment. Her medical situation evolved into a shitstorm where she refused to move back home with my father, and found her being treated through Medstar Georgetown University Hospital. It has been an adjustment we are continuing, despite going into her fifth year. drama, drama, drama Have I mentioned that she came with two little puppy dogs? I’m fine.

Driving into Georgetown is lovely, EXCEPT when you have an unpredictable dangerous abusive narcissistic racist misogynist president… Every single time I drove into the city, I would check my back-ups, my back-ups to the back-ups and their back-ups to make sure that no matter what craptastic storm of shit the president instigated, SonHerisme would be safe until I could return to him or, g-d forbid, if I could not return to him. I am the parent who gave my child a cell phone in elementary school. It is highly controlled by me, even to this day (he is only 12), but has brought both of us immense peace of mind on Georgetown days especially.

Every single time we heard helicopters fly over, I ran to Twitter to see what our asshole in charge may have instigated and if we were safe. My house sits on the side of a little foothill mountain in the flight pattern to Camp David. If the three military helicopters in formation flew over, I refreshed Twitter obsessively (I follow a lot of journalists, politicians, government agencies and employees plus the BBC because our media can be, let’s say, a bit nationalistic shall we?). The three helicopters mean one has the president inside, btw. I am not revealing anything to ne’er do wells – our airspace is fairly locked down around here since 9/11. When President Obama was in office, everyone would run outside when we heard the helicopters and wave like crazy. It was exciting. He was not perfect. I admire, but do not idolize President Obama, or his politics, but we were immensely proud to have him in that office and proud to host him in our area.

COVID-19 has brought a whole new way of life for us, but MotherHerisme’s Georgetown treatments have not halted, save a handful of weeks. As the election cycle ramped up the sychophant racists felt compelled to become more emboldened in their fervent support for the sitting president causing my safety alarm bells to ring on high alert. We saw them gunning down 270 with their flags waving. We saw them put large banners in their yards declaring their unwavering loyalty to fear-based white supremacy.

I checked Twitter more frequently. I had Waze on, watching traffic patterns into and out of the city for days before Georgetown appointments. I packed an emergency bag for my child in the event of some acts of violence which might prevent me from getting home from the city. I packed a safety plan bag as if we were back in the situation with MrexH. I packed a fucking g-ddamned bag. I might be holding some anger there with that.

On January 5th, I was in Georgetown. On January 6th, treasonous seditionists took over our Capitol building until our Governor sent in reinforcements to reclaim the building. All of those employees in the hospital parking garage, at the hospital, in the cafe, driving the buses, taking care of the hurting humans, doing the things that life asks us to do, were put into jeopardy because of those despicable actions at the encouragement of despicable assholes.

I was, we were, we are, fine.

As I recall my attorney telling me (she had to repeat this many times), “our courts cannot legislate degrees of being an asshole.”

Damnit it all

This is a hard lesson. While I do absolutely believe that lack of accountability for egregious behavior is a form of abuse, I have already had the hard lesson of learning that not all egregious behavior can be legislated. It may be that those we clearly see as responsible for inciting the violence of January 6th, among other deplorable behaviors, will not experience accountability exacted by a court of law. But, the law is not separate from us. It’s humans that work for and form our laws and the interpretation of our laws. This is where I know we can make a difference. We can hold those responsible accountable. We can educate ourselves, use our votes, write letters to our representatives, and withhold our passive endorsements (grab-your-wallet, again).

*steps off of another soapbox to say* I have been pleasantly surprised that today I feel I can Twitter at my discretion rather than as a knee-jerk emergency panic response. This is my sign that perhaps I can attempt to be a thoughtful planner rather than a panic-reactor. Or not. But feeling as if I have the choice may be enough for now.

How are you feeling?

Love, Ms. Herisme xoxo

ps – instead of Twittering: I read, I watched short comedy clips, and “liked” all of the people posting the things on Facebook

Random note: on Twitter I am frequently mistaken for a prominent Pakistani politician. This provides occasional hilarity for me as I sometimes respond. Good times.

I need a drink and some giggling

(avoids tagging the comedian bc I see you downloading across the waters which my friend suspects is due to the tagging of the peoples. It is a bit funny yet full of the awkwards. Also, “Hello!” and I am glad you are here because I like you and I want to visit all of your museums I feel nostalgia for, plus take a train ride through your countryside with a footnote seaside adventure, one day. Of course, now I am also thinking about a walk in a random park, a show, and chucking it all in here to move there and share a knowing kindred head nod with a neighbor *sigh* and *internally sings* with imagination, I’ll get there)

To Sirs/Madame (with love)

(or listen here)

I have a deep admiration for Sidney Poitier. We must have been besties or at least friendly neighbors in a past life, I am sure of it. I mean, look at how his face crinkles when he smiles and his eyes change in intensity with each emotion – amazing, no? I know that’s acting, but even actors are still themselves on some level. Or maybe not. I have no idea not being one or knowing any other than some ridiculous characters in my own life. Neither Sidney Poitier, or his character Mr. Thackeray, in the movie “To Sir With Love,” are comparable to the ‘sir’ I am referring to in the first note below EXCEPT for the changing dynamics and trajectory of complicated yet quite simple human dynamics, power struggle, meaning, and worthiness.

To Sir,

As you leave your leadership position for our country, I am writing a reluctant thank you note. Reluctant in the sense that the “thank-you’s” I refer to are not for things I would have wanted or wished for any of us. But I do thank you.

You have brought forth a terrifyingly disorienting uncomfortable mirror reflecting back on us those most debase and deplorable human traits we all posses to some degree on some level. For some of us, this has humbled us in such a way that we are able to commit to doing the excruciating hard work of holding ourselves and each other accountable with more firmly redefined boundaries and actionable education. For others of us, the mirror reflected permission to be emboldened with reinforced racism, inhumane actions, abuse, narcissism, and other sociopathic behaviors.

Our collective integrity and ability to unify and move forward with our humane best interests guiding our democracy requires accountability for the repercussions your words and actions have incited. It is with love and gratitude that I wish for you, and those who have chosen your reflection as permission to absorb your sociopathy, to experience these firm boundaries and absolute accountability. This is the way forward for all of us together. We refused to acknowledge those abhorrent things about ourselves, about our country, until you held up that mirror. To un-know it now will be our demise and we cannot afford that. Our children cannot afford that. The world cannot afford that. But, we needed to know these things, we needed to know you, your sychophants, and be reminded of how fragile our own humanity is, before we could start the hard work for the great changes and atonements we need to make to ourselves, our communities, our country and the world.

While I acknowledge that you are most likely unable to receive the accountability, grace, and peace I wish for you, I send it anyway. Because this is how we heal – without the ill-advised pressure of dismissing what has passed or forgetting – setting healthy boundaries, having appropriate accountability, and then we are able to unify for the sake of all of our futures.

Thank you, We the People

Dear Sir/Madame,

As you re-enter the realm of leadership at the highest positions in our country, I am writing to wholly and completely thank you.

You are arriving at a time where we need a leader with humane-centric ideas, thoughts, words and actions along with strength and experience. You embody this and have made the sacrifice once again to stand before us all and lead us forward with integrity-based cohesiveness.

I look forward to working hard alongside my communities as we hold our boundaries firm with what it means to have a humane-based democracy with civil discourse across multiple disciplines in regards to resolving the pressing issues we face as individuals, families, communities, country and globally. The way forward to this unity can only take place when we also have a firm foundation of accountability and education.

Please always encourage us to remember how fragile our unity can be without healthy humane boundaries, without accountability. Please encourage us to remember how important accountability is in order for us to feel those firm humane boundaries.

I feel confident that you will receive this message as intended – full of encouragement, dedication, peace and confidence in you and your team. Thank you for putting yourselves out there for us and our country. You are true patriots.

Good luck, You! Good luck, US! Let’s do these hard things.

Love, We the People

And that is that. Let’s embrace today for a time of being thankful that enough of us have saved our democracy for now. Let’s give ourselves space to get some good rest so that when we awaken tomorrow, we can get to the really hard work of pulling ourselves back together through education, accountability, and the very hard work of taking care of ourselves and each other.

Love, Ms. Herisme xoxo

ps I’m sure that none of this has anything to do with my dv marriage/divorce bwahhahahahahahahahaha lol trauma, trauma, trauma It will be lovely to not have to bear daily witness to the collective narcissistic abuse and all that carries with it. Gently, gently, brain and body…

Also, I wrote this early this morning, and have just watched the inauguration of President Joe Biden – watching the clock to turn 12:01pm before relaxing. Excellent speech, as expected, and whoa! the poet laureate! WHAT?!!? She was breathtakingly amazing! Amanda Gorman – wow!

Like a Bird

Martin’s Big Words by Doreen Rappaport illustrated by Bryan Collier
(or listen here)

“We have learned to fly the air like birds and swim the sea like fish, but we have not learned the simple art of living together as brothers and sisters,” Martin Luther King Jr. 1964 Nobel Peace Prize acceptance speech

This was posted by a friend today in honor of Martin Luther King Jr. Day and it has been sitting with me all morning.

Humanity has infinite ideas which sometimes intersect and sometimes do not. Most of us are interested in these ideas manifesting in a humane way. A rabid, vocal, temper-tantruming, violent group of people (and those under their influence) are interested in ideas manifesting in a way which separates worthy and unworthy people. They see only themselves (not even their influenced supporters) as fitting into the worthy bubble which will then control the rest of humanity through fear. Maybe my proportions are slightly optimistic, maybe wistfully hopeful (?).

It’s a sloppy venn diagram! JOY!

We have the power in numbers to hold those extremists in check with boundaries and accountability. Those who are under their inhumane influence need to see this accountability as much as we do.

We know how to live together as brothers and sisters, even when our ideas clash, as long as our ideas include a basic regard for humanity. It is the inhumanity which divides. We are not two sides, we are a zillion billion infinity trillion humane sides with an outlier portion of inhumanity. Let’s love each other 3000 and do the hard work of educating ourselves (links to resources for adults and children), being actively anti-racist, and holding inhumane outlier actions accountable. Let’s be the MLK Jr. legacy, and other ancestors who advocated for humanity legacies (grammar police, stand down). My unsolicited two cents of brainiac leaf sharing.

Love, Ms. Herisme xoxo

ps If you started singing Nelly Furtado at the title, then we are twinning (and old)! Peaceful healthy moments to you today #carryonpeacewarrior #carryonhealthwarrior

in addition: lots of very awesome people have mid-January birthdays in my circles. Shout out end-of-lent-celebrants’-prizes!

Bottle Brush Dryer

Callistemon (Bottle Brush) tree Callistemon is a lovely word to say out loud – try it! Now with a French accent – fun!
(or listen here)

Hey y’all. What is going on?

I mean other than sedition, treason, covid-19, quarantine, double masks, shit tons of laundry, homeschool but maybe hybrid but maybe in-school but no hybrid but virtual-hybrid but hybrid but WTF, constant food planning/purchase/monitor/prepare/eat/cleanup/repeat, unfortunate alcohol preventing liver, oh yes, and fruit flies. I mean, other than that. But, c’mon, at least you don’t have diapers or multiples to deal with (all of the f’s to the yous)!

Today a tell of mine cropped up again. It is a bonus oddity which happens due to trauma (childhood to adulthood), which I suppose has been let out of it’s dark hiding spot as a result of current family issues (insert rote boring details).

One of my tells is deep cleaning random things. I spent an hour dismantling and cleaning my washer and dryer earlier, eventually enlisting tools such as an old toothbrush and the skinny bottle brush from the kitchen. Meanwhile, my office, formerly known as the princess room (that’s a whole other shitstorm of a story), and SonHerisme’s work space include massively insane piles of randomness such as: used paper airplane mound, folded and ironed items under donation consideration, mask cloth scraps-in-a-basket, thank-you notes-a-waiting-for-a-writing, lego/lego/lego, rocks (he IS 12), sheet music just having missed the music stand or shelf, and everyone’s favorite pile – books which may or may not have been or will be read! Also, my Christmas stuff is still up.

Everything will be okay, until it isn’t and then SERPENTINE and PIVOT! At least it was a deep clean tell this time and not mid-self-cut of my hair. Or that elusive complete breakdown. *sigh*

Currently resonating in my personal life:

Eventually, reaching out becomes exhausting and redundant. You can predict what friends and family (and even your therapist) are going to tell you. “I’m so sorry!” “You are stronger than you know.” “Try something to distract yourself!” “It’s going to be okay.” But, it’s not. And when their support doesn’t make you feel better, you add guilt to the mix. So the next time you’re struggling (which they don’t understand will always be constant), you suffer alone. Because carrying your hopelessness is easier than carrying their helplessness and you’re already barely hanging on. That’s survival. –Grace Durbin

My silence means I am tired of fighting and now there is nothing left to fight for. My silence means I am tired of explaining my feelings to you, but now I don’t have the energy to explain them anymore. My silence means I have adapted to the changes in my life and I don’t want to complain. My silence means I am on a self healing process and I am trying to forget everything I ever wanted from you. My silence means I am just trying to move on gracefully with all my dignity. –Aarti Khurana

Happy Sunday Funday, Funny Bunny! Happy face at all costs! Go ‘Merica! (this is of the sarcasms. JOY! – StarFire)

Love, Ms. Herisme xoxo

ps. I am grateful for the blessings in my life (repeats with popcorn dancing)

The Theater, The Theater!

My empty theater… #carryonhealthwarriors so these people can get back to work please and thank you
(or listen here OR skip to the end and follow the link to listen to Brené Brown bc she delivers much more eloquently for sure!)

The theater, the theater! What’s happened to the theater? Especially where dancing’s concerned?

Chaps, who did taps, aren’t tapping anymore. They’re doing choreography.

Chicks, who did kicks, aren’t kicking anymore. They’re doing choreography.

Heps, who did steps, they would stop the show in days that used to be.

Through the air they keep flying, like a duck that is dying.

Instead of dance, it’s choreography.

By the late great Irving Berlin from his lovely movie, White Christmas, and performed by the lanky limber-limbed lively laughing Danny Kaye with seriously pony-tailed and eyelinered dancers (he too has a strong eyeliner game!).

Civil discourse, civil discourse! What happened to civil discourse? Especially where politics are concerned? (This is a great companion to the other song running through my head this past week plus… Sedition! Sedition! sung to the Tradition! song from Fiddler on the Roof. Anyone else tune-altering to get through the day? Anyone? Okay. It’s okay. I know… it’s just me *sigh*)

My perspective – civil discourse is a productive and necessary process for our democracy. We need to have varied opinions and perspectives with solid facts, figures, projections, philosophies and passions present and accounted for in a respectful and productive manner. My optimism leads me to believe that most of us are in agreement on this.

We are massively off track at the moment. Too many of us seem to have an unwavering expectation that when we reach out to engage in civil discourse it will be reciprocated. Sometimes it is not, it cannot be returned. When we lose holding people accountable, we lose our credibility and grounding. This is where we lose our democracy. We are arriving at the theater expecting the productive dance of civil discourse. There are many emboldened folks arriving at the theater to execute choreography, obliterating the dance altogether.

It is all theater, of course. But one with a lethal component (which I am, as you know, familiar with).

There is no reasoning or possibility of civil discourse with delusion, sociopathy, or sociopathy by association or programming. As long as we try to pretend that there are two sides to a conversation when one side is clearly showing up in a sociopathic way (check your trusted experts), we will suffer shock, disorientation and grief at the inhumane concessions we are expected or forced to make at their insistence. There are not two sides in this scenario. Promoting inhumanity is what it is – no both-sides-isms.

If you are entering civil discourse with others of different philosophies, opinions, passions etc, there are many many sides of the conversation because you are all entering the political theater with intentions of civil discourse with each other.

There is no civil discourse with sociopaths, with narcissists, with abusers. Only very firm and clearly defined healthy boundaries with very firm and clearly defined healthy consequences.

It’s hard, I know, unless you have had the unfortunate experience to have been in a relationship with someone or even an institution built on abuse. Even in the situation you feel as if you are crazy (which is the point of being abusive btw so that you will fearfully concede and be abused).

There are signs. There are always signs.

(blah blah blah every single town has an, “oh wow! I had NO idea there was abuse happening in that home!” story. EVERY. SINGLE. ONE.)

Abusers systematically break down healthy boundaries until you have difficulty reconciling that what they do is hurtful and wrong. They cannot be reasoned with. Unless you are a very skilled and intensive professional with a willing-to-reform abuser, you cannot change them with any of your words, skills, compromise.

Engaging with abusive sociopaths (and those succumbing to their inhumane base as a result of association with a sociopath) to try and reach a compromise is futile and damaging.

There must be consequences, there must be accountability, even if they are the consequences of redefining and expanding our own personal boundaries as we define what accountability means for us (in a healthy and respectful manner).

My heart and soul aches for those who are experiencing the absolute devastation of just now knowing how much is out of your control and how precarious real protection is. Co-workers, family, friends, neighbors cannot protect you and sometimes, even without the ability to recognize it, they will put you directly in harm’s way. The police, the court, security, etc have rules and personal biases which guide them and sometimes put you directly in harm’s way too.

It is hard. It is disorienting. It is not funny, I know. But it is supremely ridiculous.

Apologies from an abuser are hollow at best unless they make great efforts at correction (which rarely if ever happens, also this link is an excellent article from Rabbi Danya Ruttenberg). This is why boundaries, accountability and consequences are so very important – your boundaries, your defined consequences without any expectation from the abuser. Engaging in dehumanizing the abuser is also counterproductive. Lack of consequences for dehumanizing people enough to abuse them is what led us here – avoid it yourself. Zero engagement other than boundaries and accountability.

Entering into some choreographed theater with people who, in any capacity, helped foment the circumstances which led to last week’s scenes at our Capitol building, is futile and harmful to building unity. These fomentors at all levels of society, bear total responsibility for the fear gripping us now. They failed when their country, when we, needed them most. Their failures will never be forgotten. We will persevere and move on with the doing of the things and living of the lives, once we have established our firm boundaries and accountability for all, but this… this knowledge of experience, will never leave us. (paraphrased from Cincinnatian, former politician, and writer, David Pepper)

It is time to let those people go from our feeble futile attempts at reaching out across the schism of humane vs inhumane approach to life as though some reasonable discourse can occur. Treat them with humane regard, everyone deserves that consideration. Then, let them be accountable in whatever way our boundaries allow, so that the rest of us can unite, adult up, get the shit cleaned out, and run forward with engaged civil discourse and a functioning democracy.

Thank you for coming to my TEDious talk today đŸ˜‰ You’re the best!

*free form tap dances off the stage* *also, not wearing a top hat but yes to the patterned tights*

Love, Ms. Herisme xoxo

“As in theater, the eyes of men, after a well-graced actor leaves the stage, are idly bent on him who enters next.” William Shakespeare Richard III (1595) act 5, sc. 2, 1.23

also, I wrote this yesterday and today listened to BrenĂ© Brown, so I am adding this link bc HOLY CRAPtastic y’all she is a consummate professional and says all this much better than I do and with receipts instead of links to White Christmas and a voicebox that works! She’s the package, people. She is THE package. *bows down*

Milquetoast with Preserves

(or listen here – my voice is weirdo as meirdo)

I slept fitfully last night, as on many previous nights. How about you?

Personal and national economic anxiety? check

COVID repercussions and it’s developing variants? check

Blatant inhumanity of neighbors? check

Perseverance of grossly misaligned boomer white supremacist privileged gaslighting legacy? check

Raising my sweet SonHerisme to face craptastic consequences of all of this shit for which he has zero responsibility in the creation? checkMATE

As one of my totally teenager niece’s says, “UGA.” (not a shout out to them dawgs, obvs)

I am proud that one of my representatives presented the impeachment articles. I wish there were more decisive and firm actions being taken or pursued – it seems like milquetoast consequences to this yogaball chair non expert (of course I am sitting on a yoga ball chair and now you know something more about how to frame your perception of me which is most likely accurate af – apologies and you’re welcome). Unfortunately I have very limited knowledge of how the legislative procedures work and even less super federal law knowledge. I have to count on my communication to my representatives as my means for fighting for our democracy. Or random texts to a former High School government teacher who has the *eye roll ‘n sigh* perfected.

These situations are all hard lessons with coping skills I honed during my challenging divorce. It seems so familiar to me to note we have entered a time where we must find our trusted people and count on them (see previous post). We have to do our own hard work of finding our peace and centering in it so that we can use our oxygenated replenished strength and rebuild the same of others around us. As we all saw in real time last week, emotions spread quickly, especially when they are passionate and unfortunately exacerbated when they are righteously negative in a mob frenzy encouraged by a charismatic narcissistic inhumane leader. Nazi much? People died, people were hurt, property was damaged, bioterrorism was used by the deeply disturbed mask/COVID deniers – ahhhh! It’s all too much really.

My separation and divorce were too much. We almost all got killed through the process (spoiler alert – we did not get killed… sometimes I wonder if this still ends with a ‘yet’).

In order to preserve myself and function, especially as I was an immediate single parent in a lethal situation, I had to recognize the truth, or rely on my trusted people to tell me what truth was/is. I was forced to define my boundaries while recognizing there are boundaries which are out of my control. Advocate for swift firm consequences when boundaries were inevitably breached. Center back into my peace. Repeat day after day after month after year.

For all of us, our children are watching and learning from us. Our parents who have been staunch systematically deliberately programmed Republicans their entire adult lives, are watching us. Which is ironic as GenX on down were raised to share, be inclusive, fight for justice for the underdog, and community oriented. Our trumpian and progressive neighbors are all watching and waiting to see what happens next. We can center and preserve our peace so that our children learn how to recognize the critical importance of self care especially in supremely trying times. This practice will allow us who are able to, take up space and advocate for democracy and truth in ways that we can control: with our resources (grab-your-wallet style), our time (writing letters to representatives, attending civic meetings, keeping informed from vetted quality sources), and our own personal commitment to things we are passionate about with firm boundaries in place.

Not everyone who commits or supports atrocities is held accountable or reaps consequences. See every divorce from a narcissist and the grossly disparate prison population statistics for example. Life is not fair, we already know this hard lesson. Our world is flawed, but we can love it anyway. This isn’t pollyanna milquetoast love, this is set boundaries with consistent consequences and preserve your own wellness, love. I see these pursuits as consequences for those who behave badly – consequences we can absolutely control. Maybe we have a duty to ourselves, our children, our community, our nation and our global community to preserve our personal boundaries and wellness. (article link)

At 12, SonHerisme balks now every time I mention love outside of my love for him which must never ever ever ever be mentioned in public – EVER never. “Mom,” in his newly deepening indignant boy-man voice, “why are you always thinking everyone is going around spreading love?!? Mando is NOT going to fall in love with any of the people on the show and move to the beach!” My response, “love is the thing that makes everything exist – everyone is looking for its signs.”

Below is an exercise prescribed to me during my most difficult and terrifying days. Most of the time I would come to a space where I would channel Oprah (I do not use her anymore, but thank you, Oprah!). She is what would get my car to park in a safe space, get my breathing under control and my body moving so that I could make that walk through the metal detectors into the basement of the courthouse. Maybe this will be useful to you too and you can harness your own inspiration if needed (like maybe Drew Barrymore or Rep. Katie Porter and sorry L, but I don’t think that Greg Davies will work here UNLESS he is literally walking next to you with a menacing face to keep interruptions away or to hand you occasional libation, an OB one might say – overgrown butler and now I’ve made a nonsense segue which has ruined the moment apologies and you’re welcome).

Look around you and see something very specific, anything, and make a mental note of it. Listen for 5 seconds and make a mental note of what you hear. Can you smell anything or taste anything? Make note of that. Find something you can touch and make note of that. Close your eyes and relax the inside corners of both eyes. Lift your shoulders up to your ears then gently release them down through your shoulder blades. Relax your jaw and release your tongue from the roof of your mouth. Take a deep in-breath on a 5 count. Hold for a 5 count. Release that breath on a 7 count. In this moment you are safe. In this moment SonHerisme is safe. In this moment you can breathe in love and breathe out love.

If you can, as you can, go do the things even if the things are preservative rest.

Love, Ms. Herisme xoxo

ps. according to Chase’s Calendar of Events, yesterday was hot tea with a poem day and I liked that bit – the rest of yesterday, though… anywho #carryonpeacewarriors

Long Black Branches

the Potomac
(or listen here)

Here is what I need and perhaps you need it as well:

Have you ever tried to enter the long black branches of other lives —
tried to imagine what the crisp fringes, full of honey, hanging
from the branches of the young locust trees, in early morning, feel like?

Do you think this world was only an entertainment for you?

Never to enter the sea and notice how the water divides
with perfect courtesy, to let you in!
Never to lie down on the grass, as though you were the grass!
Never to leap to the air as you open your wings over the dark acorn of your heart!

No wonder we hear, in your mournful voice, the complaint
that something is missing from your life!

Who can open the door who does not reach for the latch?
Who can travel the miles who does not put one foot
in front of the other, all attentive to what presents itself
Who will behold the inner chamber who has not observed
with admiration, even with rapture, the outer stone?

Well, there is time left —
fields everywhere invite you into them.

And who will care, who will chide you if you wander away
from wherever you are, to look for your soul?

Quickly, then, get up, put on your coat, leave your desk!

To put one’s foot into the door of the grass, which is
the mystery, which is death as well as life, and
not be afraid!

To set one’s foot in the door of death, and be overcome
with amazement!

To sit down in front of the weeds, and imagine
god the ten-fingered, sailing out of his house of straw,
nodding this way and that way, to the flowers of the
present hour,
to the song falling out of the mockingbird’s pink mouth,
to the tippets of the honeysuckle, that have opened

in the night

To sit down, like a weed among weeds, and rustle in the wind!

Listen, are you breathing just a little, and calling it a life?

While the soul, after all, is only a window,

and the opening of the window no more difficult
than the wakening from a little sleep.

Only last week I went out among the thorns and said
to the wild roses:
deny me not,
but suffer my devotion.
Then, all afternoon, I sat among them. Maybe

I even heard a curl or tow of music, damp and rouge red,
hurrying from their stubby buds, from their delicate watery bodies.

For how long will you continue to listen to those dark shouters,
caution and prudence?
Fall in! Fall in!

A woman standing in the weeds.
A small boat flounders in the deep waves, and what’s coming next
is coming with its own heave and grace.

Meanwhile, once in a while, I have chanced, among the quick things,
upon the immutable.
What more could one ask?

And I would touch the faces of the daises,
and I would bow down
to think about it.

That was then, which hasn’t ended yet.

Now the sun begins to swing down. Under the peach-light,
I cross the fields and the dunes, I follow the ocean’s edge.

I climb, I backtrack.
I float.
I ramble my way home.

Poem by Mary Oliver From West Wind: Poems and Prose Poems

A poem, Have You Ever Tried to Enter the Long Black Branches, by Mary Oliver read by me for you which is my way of reaching out and giving you all a post-COVID hug with maskless wild abandon! (except for K who wishes to receive this as a cup of hot tea *wink* which will be shared with M who brings all of the Emma Bridgewater Ă  la table!)

Love, Ms Herisme xoxo

ps. Well

If our government officials who can make a difference today, choose to not make a swift decisive hard boundary difference today, I’m afraid that we are in for even worse over the next 10 days. The time of separation is the most lethal when leaving an abuser. If this is too obtuse for you – our president is a narcissistic abusive criminal and voting him out of office has made us vulnerable on a lethality scale used to measure the likelihood lethal harm will come to spouses/partners/children in abusive situations. I don’t want to know this, but I do and now you do too. You’re welcome!

Also, the COVID variants which are anti-body resistant have a faster spread including through children. *sigh* Wear a damn mask fuck all please. Assume you have COVID and everyone you are breathing the same air space with is going to die when you breathe masklessly with them. Get your damned shit together and stop being a virus spewer. (not intended for you bc I know that you are wearing a mask – I am yelling into the ether of lost people devoted to inhumane thoughts and actions then couching it in dramatically swishing righteous cloaks of Jesus and conspiracy wack-a-do as moral superiority).

I digress because my emotions and brainiac are what they are… koyc (kiss on your cheek, post covid natch)