Thursday, September 29, 2016

Busy Hands

Now that the summer is done, and I'm no longer prepping for a ton of different large events, I'm back to wanting to dive into a ton of creative projects.

I'm knee deep in crochet, both with a massive project started, and a ton of ideas for things I want to make.  Those alone will likely keep me busy for a while.  They'll be super cute, and the people they're going to should love them.

I have been wanting to try a ton of new recipes, both on random impulse things that look tasty, and ideas for the beast's breakfasts and such.  We're also still testing out timing for things on the new stove since swapping over to gas, which means needing to use Rosh Hashanah as an excuse for experiments.  So far nothing has gone too oddly though.

Even though I already do a ton of different things, I want to try making a quilt for the first time.  It doesn't seem like it should take too long to do if I pick something simple for a pattern, and this time of year is the best time for fabric hunting (perks to being a forever a 90's goth).  It will be fun to try it out.

On top of it all, I've been itching to play with chain, but I don't have anything in mind, and I'm really low on rings.  Until I have something definite I want to make, I have enough on my plate.

My hands might die, but they'll make awesome things in the process.


Sunday, September 25, 2016

Growth

This is going to be a dancey rant.  Because it needs to happen.  Consider yourself warned.

Over the faire I worked at, I spent time with some of the dancers I've known for just about my entire time doing belly dance.  They've always been very chill, and decent people, but as dancers, they are incredibly frustrating.

Everything from costuming, to makeup, to their dancing itself, and attitude towards it is a project for me to be around.  They have this sort of half assed attempt at education in regards to tribal belly dance that leads them to having barely decent costumes (that they don't even know what they're actually wearing) giant swirls on their face that they think are traditional harquus (normally small dots and simple lines), and a level of proficiency in dance that is just enough to where if they actually practiced with how they've been taught, they're likely to injure themselves.

The point of tribal belly dance is to use a series of moves with other dancers in an improvised format.  It focuses on specific muscle isolation work, rather than trying to tell the entire body to do a move.  There's a lot of things you can do in tribal that you can't do in other dancer formats, just because of how it is done comparatively.

They however, have been recycling the same choreographed sets for years upon years, without any real knowledge of tribal improv moves.  To the point where they flaunt how quickly they learned certain choreographies, which really only involve a handful of moves repeated over and again.  And because of the way they do the moves, it looks like they're trying to tell their body how to move, and it's being forced.  They wind up looking sloppy because of it, and the crowd can tell.

On that note, this year was the first time I'd done a full performance with a prop.  I used it alongside my set, in a way that accented things I would be doing otherwise, providing visible challenge, and kept me dancing in an interesting way.  Any props they brought out turned into crutches.  They looked like they were arguing with them, and it kept them from doing any other moves.

On the few occasions that dancers were trying to figure things out, or I was really familiar with their music and wanted to help explain how to do what they wanted safely, or add moves that would be more fitting, they sort of shooed me away as though they already had mastery of all things dance.

Now, apparently this isn't the case for them, but if anyone offers to show me a new move, I'm gonna hop on it.  Even if I don't use it that day, I'm going to want it in my vocabulary for the future.

It's like seeing these levels of being a dancer.  Most people give up learning when they're at the point where they can go on stage, and stagnate from there.  They create more bad habits, and never feel like they need to fix them, because they already went through and learned once.

Then there are the dancers who are always learning, and always want to learn.  They move out of their comfort zone, keep trying to improve, and feel drawn toward new things.  And even though they may always be a student, they're often far better dancers than the people who quit trying to learn.

Thursday, September 22, 2016

Shy on Snuggles

Last weekend was a faire I was dancing at, and Lux went to fight and see friends.  It was also a really long week prior to.  Lux will be travelling far away for work in a month, and things with his family were a bit stressful, as well as things at home being difficult for me.

We both have somewhat different circles at this faire.  Where Lux is good friends with all the fighters, I've become friends with the other dancers, vendors and performers over time, so we wind up doing very different things during the day.  This resulted in both of us having a very different days, that were less relaxing than we'd expected them to be.

Lux saw a lot of his old partners, and there is a ton of things going on with all of them, Most of which were either creating stress in their lives, or frustrating for him.  And after they'd all expressed interest in playing, they all bailed.  Had I not been so busy as well during the day (with things I intend to write about later) I would have made sure to spend more time with him, and knowing more of what was going on, as it was happening.

As is, we got in very little time together, and no time just for snuggles itself.  Even while talking to a friend of ours, we admitted that we won't have any time together that isn't at an event until the winter, which kind of sucks, because we could both use that time to just relax.

It was the kind of weekend where even though we were both doing things we enjoy, it wasn't relaxing, and didn't give us that happy time together we normally get.

Hopefully we get it before he leaves, because I sure could use some more snuggles with cute boys.

Sunday, September 18, 2016

Keeping Up

I had that talk with Kitty a while back.  One that honestly had me worried if it would have any effect.

Much to my happy surprise though, even throughout camp he kept up some level of communication, which I didn't expect at all given how busy he would be.  It continued past then, and we finally got time to have a long video call.

We also talked about keeping up with them while he's not in an office, and even after.  With the beast in school, lunch dates are seeming like a plan to become a regular thing, and I can't wait.

Apparently, he had been aware of his lacking in contact, and was planning on saying something when he got back from camp.  I just got to it first.

We're also talking about possibly seeing each other again soon, which I'm really looking forward to.

A little while ago, I was feeling so incredibly frustrated with him, to the point where if it was anyone else, I would get rid of them without a second thought.  With how he's responded though, and has actively been making an effort, it's that little bit that makes me super happy.

Maybe sometimes I'm a little too loyal and stubborn, but he's honestly worth every minute.

Between trying to build more with Kitty, and helping be present with Lux as life is creating a lot of stress for him, I have a lot to balance.  I feel like I can't possibly do enough for them lately.

Thursday, September 15, 2016

Running

I have been insane over the last two weeks.

Things are picking up again, and honestly, after the lull after Pennsic, it feels good.

The beast is back, and she's started school again.  That's both something that gives me time to get things done, and removes time because it enforces a schedule on me that much more heavily.  She's also been trying to avoid doing what I need her to lately, with the other people in the house letting her get away with too much, which will need to change as the school year gets going.

I've taken on a few new projects that I can't wait to finish.  I think they're all going to look fantastic.  They are all of course also very time consuming.

With the beast back in school, I have no excuse not to get more serious about working out again.  I started slacking off too much after Pennsic, and need to dive back in head first.  Hopefully that will help me feel a lot better again.

And on that note, Lux and I are going to be at a faire this weekend, which meant all the packing to camp and prep work that comes with it, as well as putting together a set, with a lot of new things.  I'm really looking forward to it, and want to really show how much work and love I put into my dance than the recycled set everyone else has used over the last forever.

Things are hectic, but all working toward good things.

Sunday, September 11, 2016

With Great Power

I've had to speak about my pain tolerance to people a lot lately.  Either explaining it to people, or others discovering it, and talking about all the little ins and outs of being able to take a beating like I can.

When I first tell people how high my pain tolerance is, they usually wind up asking first if I have to be careful of permanent damage before my brain tells me something is hurting.  They just think that I go from zero to broken bones.

And, I mean, for some people, the amount that I take and shrug off may honestly be enough to do near permanent damage to others

I do a lot of listening to my body though.  Whether it's pain, or just little changes in my system.  I know when I ovulate, and can usually tell exactly when my period will start well before it does.  I know early on when I'm dehydrated, and what my body needs to run properly.  I pay very close attention to when my body is telling me something is wrong, and when something is just an irritation.  And, for me, that's an incredibly important responsibility.

I have to pay very close attention to what my body tells me when it comes to pain.  I do ride that line between something I can take, and something that will cause damage sometimes, and while that is very important for the top to know where that fun spot is, it's more important for me.  I'm the one feeling it, and can communicate in case adjustments need to be made.  I need to be aware of when pain goes from being fun, to releasing endorphins, to being a potential issue.

And I know that I'm a lot physically tougher than most people.  Not only does it take a lot for me to feel something as pain, but I can take pain a whole lot longer than most people probably could.  So I need to be constantly gauging things while attempting to enjoy what's going on.  It's quite a bit of mental work to be able to bottom when you have this high a pain tolerance.

It's probably why I rarely space.  It takes a while, and I need to trust the person I'm with.  I keep the snarky, bratty part of my brain awake so I can make sure communication is possible, and when I do speak up with an issue, it is obviously something that needs to be addressed.

So, yes, I can take a lot more than most people, but it's a lot more work than just absorbing someone wailing on me.

Thursday, September 08, 2016

Kick

One day last week was particularly draining for me, though it had a lot of good come from it.

Lux and I wound up talking through a bunch of stuff, and at the same time, I was feeling very frustrated with Kitty.  Over the summer, there were countless times when we'd planned to talk, and I'd sat waiting to hear from him, or even though I would send him regular messages trying to keep up communication, I had only got a small scattering of responses, usually with no actual information about his goings on.

It had me feeling such a mix of bad things.  I felt ignored, and like he was taking advantage of how loyal he knows I am.  I felt like he was just leaving me aside as he tried to balance his other partners, that I could simply be dropped while he tended to them.  It felt like even after I spoke up from my visit, I was just hearing less and less from him.  Like he was leaving again, but more slowly this time.

I had planned to bring it up to him after camp.  He had enough on his plate with travel and such, so I was going to wait another week.

Except I didn't.  It was bothering me for a while already, and I didn't want to wait any longer.  So I sent him a long message explaining it as clearly as I could, while still letting him know that I'm still very much there.  A few hours later he finally read it, and began a long apology.

Mind you, I had already spent a couple hours talking to Lux because I had written something in a way that was interpreted differently than my intention, and we spent a while talking things out to smooth it all out again, and that left me wanting to snuggle him up, and feeling drained that he was so far away.

And then Kitty started.  Telling me I was right to feel ignored, and that he wasn't pulling his side.  That he was being a bad partner, and that he still cared, and how he wants to find the time for me, and create more balance.

That too made me want to just walk up and hug him.  To tell him how important he is to me, and that I know he cares, and that's why I keep giving him the kicks in the ass about it.  It made me mentally spent to have these conversations, even if they ended well, to not be able to hug them, and see that they were ok.

And Kitty continued to apologize and keep contact throughout the week.  Even through camp he sent messages once in a while.  Telling me he was still processing things.  I think this one hit hard after he had a partner dump him over the same issue.  He drove home how important I am to him, and that he needs to do a better job showing his love for me.

Even positive relationships that have gone on for a long time need attention sometimes.  And sometimes it causes panic, but so long as something is done, there is a path to improve into something even better.

Sunday, September 04, 2016

True Progress

I had a really interesting moment while at Pennsic, and walking away from it, I felt really happy, and proud of myself.

One day, in between classes I had a couple free hours.  Instead of walking back to camp and getting comfy only to have to go back, I decided to use that time to look around the vendors for a new mug, as mine was old and dead.  While walking by, I was stopped by an artist whom I had met a Flea.  He called me over, trying to pull schpeel about his product, of which I was fairly uninterested.  I tried to make conversation at a casual level, but he kept pushing product down my throat, which is probably the worst way to get me to buy something.  Even when I tried to talk art with him, stating that I'd put together a coloring book earlier this year, and loved doing anatomy drawings, he just tried to say that I needed some of his drawings.

Alright, so this guy didn't even see people as people, but only a wallet.  Got it.

And at one point, he says "You know, I could draw you, in the outfit you're in right now, with six pack abs, dancing beautifully.  Or without the outfit, and just the jewelry."

I turned him down, needless to say.  I don't think that he realized that I was in clothing just to be gross dancing in during classes, so I had no desire to record myself dressed that way.  And of course, he was just trying to create his own fap material out of it.

And then, it bothered me.  Why did he have to change my stomach?  The one thing that I literally will never be able to change without surgery, because I will always have the extra skin and stretch marks from pregnancy.  Even though my abs are strong, and feel firm, you can't see it due to the extra skin.  It bothers me almost every day, and makes me want to curl up and hide.

But then, I thought a bit more about it as I looked at his drawings.  They weren't realistic.  They were all these cartoony hyper ideal shapes.  He probably had no idea how to draw my actual shape.  And, if he were to change it, and move it into his style, he's no longer drawing me.  He's drawing another cookie cutter set of tits for people to drool on, and awe at who don't know better.  He offered that because he didn't want to grow himself as an artist, but stick to the same thing he's drawn time and again.

And so, I felt myself happy with who I am.  Someone that published artists don't feel comfortable drawing, someone unrecordable due who I am.  And someone who understands more about art and drawing than he ever will.

These little moments.  These are where we grow.

Thursday, September 01, 2016

Strides

One of the happiest things about Pennsic this year was how much I saw Lux growing, and taking steps to move forward from many things.

He wants to be acknowledged as a fighter, and move forward in his knowledge and skill in the SCA, instead of just being a stickjock.  This will likely lead to us making and researching a ton of fun and interesting things in the future, and my helping him to be seen more as an incredibly competent fighter.

Which, he managed to not only fight on the field, but enter other tournaments as well.  He tried the Tuchux tournament, and loved every moment of getting to grapple, and wrestle, and fight dirty compared to normal SCA rules.  He just pouted because he couldn't punch them.  Poor sadist.

At the play party we went to, he was far more comfortable, actually said he wants to try doing more public play in the future.  He was also far more acknowledging of our power exchange as a whole, and seemed way more interested in beating me up.  All things that show way more progress compared to how he has been in the last while, and I'm looking forward to being present and helping him through all of this, and just being supportive through the process.

For the longest time Lux was against being a bondage bottom.  He'd done some rope self tying for the sake of learning, but that was all.  However, when Murphy and his apprentice showed interest in putting him in the air, Lux said he would try it.  The lack of scene vibe, and the fact that it was just a silly dopey thing being done with some of the best professionals out there, made him far more comfortable with it, and he loved every minute.  He's now looking forward to doing it again, and I made jokes which I'm not allowed to repeat again or I've been told he won't hit me anymore.

Y'know, that looks really strange compared to normal vanilla context.  Well then.

He also has interest in spinning some fire to add to his normal weapons training, or to go along with his style in play already.  And he seems more comfortable with the idea of DO events.  He's making so many strides lately, and I'm so proud of him.  And no, I'm not expecting all of these to stick, but I'm gonna be right there next to him through all of it, no matter what comes from it, just proud to see him not hiding from things he knows he enjoys.