Nuance of Curious Choice Words


There are words and phrases which are so delectably delicious that I want to say them over and over and over again, like the best wine (no headache after), or not-too-rich lighter than air smother than silk spoonful of chocolate mousse, or that steaming bowl of savory mushroom soup on a frigid day…  you know, taaaaaaaysteee tasty.


I want to be in a situation, in a conversation somewhere, maybe in a train station, or better yet on the bench in Gallery 56 West Building NGA-DC, and say to my bench neighbor, “That is just the nuance of curious choice words, isn’t it?”

Nuance of curious choice words


Now, THAT is a phrase worth repeating.


There are other words that leave a disgusting film of rotten bumpy gut taste in my mouth too.  Like, “Donald,” (apologies to Mr. -the-Duck), and, “Trump.”

There is nothing nuanced about him or people who support or are otherwise silent about him.

DT says what he means.  What he means is that he is entitled to grab women and kiss them or fondle their vaginal areas without their permission.  What he means is that he sees a 10-year-old girl as a future masturbatory object to penetrate.  What he means is that countries other than his racial ideal are shitholes.  What he means is that if he could get away with it, he would act on his sexual attraction to his own daughter (without her permission obvs).  What he means is that he wants to build a wall so that no one who isn’t up to his standards of existence has the opportunities he has had.  What he means is that anyone who is not a fat old white bigot racist misogynist hateful fear-filled man with substantial financial resources is not worthy of any consideration of humanity.


DT is not nuanced.

Disliking him has nothing to do with politics.


In democracy, politics are nuanced, disputable, debatable. 


Nothing about DT represents democracy.

He is not a nuanced debatable entity.  He is an inhumane disgusting oaf with too much connection.

He is not the first with power in this country to be this way (McCarthy much? Hello, $20 Jackson).  He is the first with so much instant connection and global influence.


We are in a disgusting and shameful moment in our history, again.

We will rise and overcome this, again.


An adult in my home began shaming 9-year-old SonHerisme for reciting all of the presidents (momma brag!) and ending with his comment that he wished Mr Obama was still president because he is afraid of DT.


The adult responded angrily that Mr. Obama and his wife walked and held hands with the devil because Mr. Obama had tugged on his pants inappropriately during the National Anthem once and bowed to the King of Saudi Arabia.  And also because Bill Clinton couldn’t keep his pants zipped (bc completely relevant – NOT).  This adult eventually dissolved into tears as I repeatedly told them to stop shaming SonHerisme (who is 9), and to stop trying to place inhumane behavior in the same category as the nuances of politics.

For example:

Political Parties in a Democracy – politics

Apartheid – inhumane

There is no discussion to be had.  Inhumane views, bigoted views, racist views, misogynist views plainly spoken are NOT EVER nuanced politics.

Even a 9-year-old understands the nonsensical inhumanity of it.  Some of his friends are immigrant families.  Some of his friends have been directly affected by the emboldened racism promoted by DT.  Some of his friends have relatives who, until last year, have been able to visit their U.S. families each year, and are now no longer permitted.

A 9-year-old cannot comprehend why international deals fall through, why our education system is a blundering tumble of a mess, why our infrastructure is breaking, etc.  because these are all fallouts of nuanced politics.

A 9-year-old understands meanness to others just for being others.


This is real.  No embellishment.

If it is happening in my house, I know that it is happening in other people’s homes.  I’m calling it out here in a truthful and honest way.  We need to keep talking about this.  We need to keep ourselves from falling into the lull of the everyday so that we can rise and overcome this shameful moment.


Grasp onto a future of mutually respectful humanity cooperating and working within the messiness of us.



Should I have seen
Should I have heard
Maybe a nuance of curious choice words
There were no signs
At least none I could see
No warning from you
Then out of the blue a fait accompli ~ Benny Andersson


No one can resist a good Swedish Folk Song from this century.  NO ONE


Love, Ms. Herisme xoxo








The exit from the break – Breakxit.

Well, it was a break.  I should count us grateful for that at least.  So, what was it this time?  A month?  Maybe less, as I did receive a bill from my attorney during that time.  YES, I continue to pay for current services, not catching up from past legal fees.


Current attorney services include the bi-weekly review of the weekly updates that I continue to provide to MrexH (week #122).  Occasionally her reviews include some contact with the court-ordered Parenting Coordinator.  While my attorney always records her time spent on my (closed but precarious) case, in almost every invoice, she marks up to half of that time as “NO CHARGE.”  She has an amazing amount of quiet compassion.  It was truly a life-saving blessing that I made it into her office in April 2014.


I was sitting in the secret parking lot of our local domestic violence shelter, shaking uncontrollably, completely at a loss for what my next step should be.  SonHerisme was safely in another location unknown to MrexH, and I phoned a friend who had previously worked at the shelter.  I needed to know where to go next, what to do, who was safe to speak to etc.  This friend patiently listened to me for a brief moment, then interrupted to instruct me to get out a piece of paper and pen.  She gave me the name of an attorney and her phone number.  She told me to hang up with her and before I did anything else or drove anywhere, to immediately phone this attorney and make an appointment.  Thankfully, I did.  Because this friend is typically an uber empathetic compassionate listener, I think that her abrupt interruption of my massive anxiety dump, shocked me into action and I made the call.


I am forever grateful to her.


I am forever grateful to all of my friends and bystanders who offered a listening ear, patience, and support as they were able to do so.


I am forever grateful to my attorney.  If I could pay her twice the amount I have, I would.  She deserves it and so much more.


I am forever grateful to our local Sheriff’s Department Victims Services Coordinator.


I am forever grateful to our court-ordered Parenting Coordinator.


I am forever grateful to Master, now Judge, S.


I am forever grateful to all of those people who work to support and guide victims of domestic violence.


This week, I received a letter MrexH sent to SonHerisme through the court-ordered Parenting Coordinator. This was a months ago discussed plan of action come to fruition.


SonHerisme and MrexH have not had contact since 2014.


Ironically at the beginning of all of our legal entanglements, letter writing was what I suggested.  The idea was dismissed as ridiculous and I was labled “overprotective and full of misplaced anxiety.” Yet here we are four years later…


MrexH’s letter is borderline illegible due to his illnesses.  The words seem appropriate enough to share with SonHerisme.  And I will do so, with the guidance and support of multiple therapists for both of us.


And so the spiral begins again.


The guilt over MrexH being so ill, the consequences of his illnesses that I did not extricate from earlier, and the part I played in bringing that into SonHerisme’s life.


Assuming the role of Destroyer of Fun, Destroyer of Sense of Security to SonHerisme.


Numbing, falling into the overall guilt hell-hole, followed by the trenches of depression, climbing up with resignation to the reality, slipping into guilt hell-hole a few more times until making it out for a while, and onward.


It is exhausting.

I am exhausted.


The break was an illusion, I realize that.  I feel SO much guilt and pain over any pain MrexH may be feeling, but recognize that I cannot afford to compromise our health/safety/lives over that, what must therefore be, misplaced guilt.


And so, I eat a small bowl of peppery vege-broth rice.

I take a moment to look at the Met Gala costumes and wonder about the details of construction, the feel of the fabrics and embellishments, the artistic minds of those creators and wearers.

I sit or walk outside for a few minutes and listen to things growing and being alive.

I take SonHerisme to and from school, to and from activities, to and from friends, to and from appointments.

I take my mother to and from appointments, change her bandages, help her with daily tasks.

I cook breakfast, lunch, dinner.

I clean the house (poorly), I launder the things needing laundered, I pay the bills needing payed.

I prepare food for my mother’s two little dogs and feed them twice a day, take them to and from appointments, give them outdoor time etc.


I continue to do all of the things that need doing.


I breathe.  I move.  I exist.


I try to keep going and I call it life.


Love, Ms. Herisme xoxo

psst…  I’m outside trying to let the magic replace the guilt.  I hope it works!

Crowdsource Edit

A piece of unedited opening paragraph for what is shaping up to become

The Firefly Ballet


The obtrusively loud white noise-ish monotonous drone of the air conditioner comes close to drowning out all the glorious summertime evening sounds of this tiny plot hosted by the Eastern-most foothills of the Appalachian Mountains.  The beloved cooling yet audibly despised garish air conditioner.  The house had to be kept cool for her ailing mother therefore the air conditioner was running much of the time, especially on these hot days.

Today had been a rare day of extraordinary high heat but low humidity making the evening outside comfortably cooler (82F) and breezy. Earlier in the evening, she made a quick run to the co-op for magnesium cream to help her mother’s cramping toes.  When she stepped out of the store, the air had such a magical quality of an exacting balance of heavy heat and low humidity with a slight breeze, a convection oven hug feeling, that she was struck with the instant memory of what was considered a cool winter night on the West coast of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.  Her parents lived there at one point in their active lives.  She visited them frequently during that expat phase.

Feeling the air earlier that evening with the split-second memory of Saudi Arabia was pleasant.  Right now, the air conditioner droned on unpleasantly.

When the house had reached its set temperature, the ac noise suddenly broke, revealing sweet bird “good night” songs, rustling lush greenery, scampering squirrels and the beginning tiny hoots of the most recent wildlife resident – an owl.  She hadn’t heard an owl from her backyard for at least five years now, and she welcomed the chance to absorb the hoot hoot hooting song. Soaking in all of the wild goodness’s until the air conditioner once again blocks out most of the surrounding nature noises.

One thing the air conditioner, or sweet memories of expat days, cannot block out is her spiraling mind.  The fear that what has happened should not have happened, or somehow, she should not have allowed it to happen, or perhaps she made missteps to make it happen, how could she have prevented it from happening.

The worst spiral of all of course, is what if it happens again with irreversible and worse consequences.  When that worst spiral happens, she begins her ritual of touching base again with reality.

The reality is that right now, she is safe.

Right now, her son is safe.

Right now, her mother is safe.

Right now, the house is secure and safe.

Right now, the threat is far away with no reasonable access to her home, her son, her mother or herself.

In this moment, in this time, in this house, in this space, with this breath, they are safe.


Love, Ms Herisme xoxo


750 Days Ago

Hey Reader Person(s)

750 days ago, after two extremely tumultuous frightening years of legal entanglement, my divorce was finalized at the courthouse with then Master, now Judge, S.  Outside of the courtroom, Judge S wears bespoke suits from New Orleans with matching fedoras.  Inside of the courtroom, he flairs with exaggerated arm movements so that his robes take some flight when he approaches his bench.

Judge S doesn’t pull any punches and seems committed to squelching any potential tomfoolery nonsense from anyone in his courtroom (including attorneys).

In case you have not been to family court in your area,

let me assure you that there is a LOT of attempted tomfoolery happening.

It’s how many attorneys make an* s-ton of money.

 Judge S should have his own show or be my bestie.  I like that guy.  I liked the other guy too (retired Judge D), but he did not wear bespoke suits, or flair in the courtroom, and his face is too pleasant.  Also, he is my friend’s FIL and I am prone to thinking he is a kindly grandfather rather than a serious law interpreter. See you at the Pop Shop, Pops!


746 days ago, I began this blog.  I wrote the opening piece a year or two earlier but did not have the wherewithal to begin a blog or continue any writing.  Since then the opening piece here has been published in a book!


Fingers Crossed that I will be selected to have a new piece, not yet posted anywhere, in a new book. Updates will be available soon.


In the meantime, I am once again revisiting my fiction works.


S L O W L Y   

S L O W L Y  

Little Callapitter**


And so the world keeps moving.  I am getting older, farther away from things I need distance from, closer to things I need drawn closer to.


Time is ticking – eventually that ol’ bell will toll for me.  In the meantime, I carry on each day with SonHerisme and myself doing the best I can do in these sweet/painful/joyous/difficult moments of life.  It is lonely over here.  Sometimes thankfully so.


How are you?


Love, Ms. Herisme xoxo


*Grammar police:  “an” is acceptable here in my opinion because saying ‘s’ sounds as if there is a vowel at the beginning.  So ha ha ha on you – no correction needed snarky pants!


**SonHerisme coined this one at 2!

Vacaville, Baby!

Sacramento, CA, West Coast-ish USA, called out to me, at one point in my life.  I interviewed for a position there and drove in to Sacramento from San Francisco (because, that’s how I do), passing Vacaville on the way.

Cow Town.

I TMBG’d all the way there and all the way back!

I did not get offered the position (boo on you, Sacramento!).  However, as the butterfly effect goes, recently I DID go into my local butcher shop at the crack of dawn one morning to pick up 4 cow eyes, 2 cow ears, and one sweet giant cow heart, for SonHerisme’s science time at his Montessori school.

Things I learned (re-learned, as lessons are prone to be):

I appreciate the local farm/butcher traditions and role in the community

I do not like to eat meat

I do not deserve to eat meat, because I could never ever ever ever do what these hardy humans do.

Yes, I moved a giant pile of very clean precision eviscerated innards from my yard (cougar much?), but it was with as much reverence as I could muster as they were FULL and required me to use 2 shovels.  I cried for the unidentified guts, placed them into the woods and gently covered them over with dead leaves.  I said a prayer that the animal had died swiftly, fed something well, and lived a lovely wild life prior to their drawn and quartering.


I believe that I am in a different place than I was when my gut hated me so much.  I am trying to s-l-o-w-l-y embrace my yuck (not other’s gut yuck). With so many struggles, I think that I can let the meat go again.  Or not.  Just not to guilt myself into a frenzy if I eat it or not.  Coffee was recently made redundant as well.  I am eyeballing sugar with some serious side-eye, but don’t want to get too carried away (s’mores season).

As my veils and shields that I have spent years wrapping myself in, fall away, my body continues to break down from the relief of unburdening and recognizing my own truths.  Melanoma, degenerative discs (current severe nerve pain), arthritis, over-fullness-of-body, tendonitis, etc

Sounds like my guts got lonely and invited other areas of my body to their protestations.

That’s right – I am a barrel of laughs!

Introduce me to all of your single man friends – what a catch!



I’m going down to Cowtown, ‘cause cow’s a friend of me

He lives beneath the ocean, that’s where I will be

Beneath the waves, the waves, oh that’s where I will be

‘cause I’m going to see the cow beneath the sea.

(not exact lyrics from the Brooklyn Ambassadors of Love, but this is how I singidty sing it)


Love, Ms. Herisme xo


Also, my melanoma margins were clear!  No further action at this point, other than vitamins and stay on my recheck schedule.  phew

Also, I am not heading your way anytime soon, Sacramento (sorrys).  However, I will possibly take a plastic cow to the pool, throw it to the bottom, and visit it there.  Singing!