Reblogging Rae: Tell Your Stories (revamped)

Post #6 in my recycling series… only 2-3 more to go, I promise 😉 This one is from September 2015 and the content has been changed a fair bit (the second half deleted and replaced by different content) so it is not actually by rights the same post 🙂

My friend posted a quote on FB for me yesterday. She said it reminded her of me and some of the stuff I’ve said recently about telling my stories.

“You own everything that happened to you. Tell your stories.

If people wanted you to write warmly about them, they should’ve behaved better.”

I’ve said things about telling my stories so others can learn from my mistakes. I had noted an old friend who knew David said she liked my book… and with slight concern I asked her if she was still in touch with him in any capacity. She’s not and told me that he shouldn’t care about events from so long ago, and besides I was nice and concealed his identity. If she wrote a book she would protect the innocent, not the guilty. This Ann Lamont quote just seemed so fitting for me, and I love when people see something that reminds them of you and fits so well – it makes you realize that at least that one person has paid some attention to you in some way or another.

I also strongly believe in telling one’s stories not only for learning from each other’s mistakes, but also to create a sense of community. More than likely if you tell your story, you will find that there are others like you that have experienced similar experiences. It creates a sense of not being alone – and as I have discovered it emboldens others to also tell there stories – or at the least confide in the original story teller. I can’t count how many women have approached me in private to tell me they connect with my accounts of abuse or how many people have come to relay their struggles with depression. Often I get the sense that I am the only person they have told, or at least in a select few.

11008385_10152728610631179_3717974064164285695_n

For a very long time, I had been ashamed of various parts of my past. This was a hard thing to admit to myself, in all honesty. For a long time I pushed certain things down or brushed them to the side; choosing to ignore them. That wasn’t healthy. I realise that now.

Making the conscious decision not to be ashamed, or at least to fight the sense of shame, I had about the abusive situations I endured has resulted in a cathartic release for me as well as serving as inspiration for other women to open up, even just a little bit, and start their own coping processes. It has resulted in changes for the better in my marriage and, I hope, changes for the better in how I interact with my family as a whole. My writing and frank discussions have also served to cause others to reach out for help for their depression – even in crises.

I like to think, though I have no proof as yet, that writing my stories about events that contributed to rape culture have also assisted in opening some people’s eyes to understanding that side of our society – a side that maybe they didn’t recognise or realise was such an ingrained problem.

This is why I feel we all must continue to tell our stories; to strengthen each other, to embolden the victimised or abused, to make real change in our society where it’s warranted.

 

 

Reblogging Rae: I’m a Mean Wife

Post #3 in my flashback/recycling series – this one was also made private awhile back and was a continuation of the first post I posted in this series (An Evil Woman.) Originally posted in December 2015.

A few months ago I was laying in bed reading or writing or some such literary activity when my husband came to the doorway to talk about something. I can’t remember what the conversation started about, but at some point he said something about a message stream he had apparently read of mine a while prior. He said basically that he was intrigued by the open sex talk it contained as I was talking to one or both of my BFFs (Svea/Maja).

I’ve mentioned before, I believe, that I’ve never been very open about my thoughts with my husband – especially before this past year – let alone about sex stuff.

He said he was intrigued and then said he stopped reading when I mentioned an ex. He said “If you ever want me to not read something just write about another guy’s ‘package,’ and I’ll be done. I just don’t want to know.”

I was confused and said I didn’t even know what conversation he was referring too. “Must have been awhile ago… Who was I even talking about?”

“I dunno. I didn’t tell you I read it at the time… it was about some guy that was Norwegian or something…”

“Oh, that would be Danish. That guy was HUGE.” I exclaimed – gesturing with my hands to drive home the point.

My husband stopped mid-sentence. Shut his mouth and just looked at me for a second. Then he said “I’m out,” turned on his heel and walked out.

I was cackling with laughter – I couldn’t help it – but I called out after him: “Hey! Where’re you going?! …I just said it was big – not that I liked it!”

I laughed some more, his reaction had just amused me so much. He didn’t respond initially so I went back to my task, giggling under my breath periodically.

About ten minutes later my husband walked back into the room silently, threw a king size candy bar into my lap and walked back out again.

Confused I called out “What’s this for? I told you I didn’t want candy – I’m on a diet!”

He came back in to respond “I just thought you’d like it because it’s so big.”

Then he walked out again.

I snorted back laughter and yelled out again “I never said I LIKED IT!”

****

He continued to periodically make references to me liking something because of it being ‘so big’ for several weeks after that. I suppose he can be pretty funny himself sometimes… but, hey, I’m the one that is freaking hilarious! 😛

IMG_3607[1]

Reblogging Rae: An Evil Woman

Post number one for my recycling of old posts series, this one is originally from December 2015- this one was actually made private awhile back when my husband expressed displeasure at being talked about on my blog. He has now; however, eased on that front. So here you go: re-sharing an incident that I still find to be freaking hilarious and epic. Enjoy 🙂

 

I FINALLY, after over 12 years of marriage, I FINALLY actually legitimately scared my husband… and it was so worth the wait!

So there I was, waiting on my husband to be ready to go somewhere; he was taking awhile in the shower so I went to the bathroom, opened the door and asked “How long are you going to be?”

He didn’t hear me.

Oh, what an opportunity.

I walked up to the shower where I saw his eyes were closed as he was rinsing his beard…

He he he, I thought to myself.

I pressed my face up against the glass door, making sure my nose was pressed upward for a more amusing effect and proceeded to wait.

It couldn’t have been more perfect how he bent his head, turned, and opened his eyes right in front of my face.

He screamed and reflexively punched the glass.

All my mom and step-dad heard was a yell and me coming down the hall crying and having difficulty breathing. My mom was like “Oh my God, Rachel’s been hurt!” and jumped up…

No, I was just laughing that hard it took me a good 10 minutes to express what had happened.

I literally laughed for 45 minutes straight – tears streaming down my face… In fact, I am still laughing and crying as I write this two days later…

When my husband came out of the bathroom he called me an “evil woman” and said I had never scared him like that in the whole time we’ve been together… He also stated that I looked like a “window licking mouth breather.”

My God, it was excellent… I am freaking hilarious… you’ll just have to trust me on that.

I will be laughing about that for years to come.

IMG_3597[1]

Melodic Memories

The kid was adorable, if I must admit. I call him a kid because he was a year and a half plus a day younger than I  and as teenagers that gap felt enormous. As if that whole extra year and a day really made a difference – I had dated Andre earlier in the year while he was 6 months younger than I… and that had seemed as though it was a stretch at the time… Funny how that point of view changes as you grow.

Regardless of his age, I looked down at him as he knelt on one knee with his guitar propped on the other knee – strumming out a tune he wanted to show me that he had learned recently. His blue-grey eyes were clear and sparkling in the dim lighting as he sang out Green Day lyrics. I smirked at how passionately he sang the subversive content, as if he were serenading me with a romantic verse; though secretly I was impressed with his talent. As we talked afterwards, he confessed to me that he hoped one day to be a legit musician.

He was a blond haired, Swedish boy that went to Young Life meetings in Täby – the suburb of Stockholm in which he lived, though it took me a good hour to travel to. We met originally at the Young Life Holsby Brunn camp – I was 16 and he was still 14. See? Much too young! I focused my sight on Maarten that summer…

But Freddy was a nice kid, and I recall being impressed at how cool he was even though he was only 14. Gosh, I was cocky, now that I think about it… because CLEARLY I was a cool 14 year old – so why would I expect less from any other 14 year olds?? Haha.

Anyway, Freddy (actually we mostly called him Fredrik, as was his Christian name, back then – Freddy is the newer incarnation of his image… at least as far as I am concerned.) …Freddy was a really good guitar player. He liked to bring his guitar along to Young Life meetings and play around on it afterwards when we were all just hanging out and chatting. He was a sweet thing that would show me when he learned new songs and serenade me as I described. In particular, I remember him singing me not only “Basketcase,” by Green Day but also  “What do you do with a drunken sailor?” Haha.

I remember thinking If only he was my age or older… You know, I kick myself these days when I think of what an idiot I was in that regard. Who gives a damn now about the girl being older / a less than two year age difference? Not saying it would have worked out or that he would have wanted to date me anyway, but you know…. He was a nice enough guy that it would have been worth the effort.

Well, now, when I got back in touch with Freddy some years ago it was no surprise to me that he is now a musician by trade. He is the guitarist for a band called “The Spin.” It is a Swedish “party pop” band, that also apparently has success in Britain. When I first got back in touch with him, they were living in Britain and making appearances on radio shows between gigs… But I understand they now live back in Sweden and just travel to Britain on occasion.

Check him out being a rockstar (haha, it tickles me to call him a rockstar 😛 )

10624678_10154775003855243_5956029110611623200_n

Image from his personality ” Freddy – TheSpin ” facebook page.

…and here is a picture of the band from the band’s facebook page, Freddy is the one on the far left with the sunnies atop his head if you can’t tell without his rocking out face 😛

13315491_1104694042920728_265250955091737377_n

So, consider this a plug to go check them out – especially if you happen to live in either of those areas that they tend to perform. …and if you get the chance, feel free to say “Hej” to Freddy for me 😉

aaaannnnddd okay… one more pic – from my scrapbook… this is him as a youth at the YL camp at Holsby Brunn… Not the best clarity…  Here’s hoping he doesn’t hate me for sharing it here 😉

IMG_3585

 

 

My complex about the man…

I have been largely absent the last few days here on WordPress… not even my usual stalking of the reader pane that occurs most every day… one or two posts read only and certainly no writing to be had.

I’ve wanted to desperately, but at the same time did not have the mental capacity nor the motivation to do so when I’d sit in front of my laptop.

I’m not going into details, but this weekend my husband and I seemed to be at a crossroads – we’ll just say he is now fully aware of all of my damage, I think, and I feel like he is well with in his right to ask for a divorce… but we’ve worked through a lot these past three days and at this juncture intends to stay with me. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: thank god he loves me…

But I didn’t come here to explain all of that… I came to tell you all something I just found out at quarter past two AM last night…

Jason told me for the first time that the night David threatened me, what was said on David’s side of the conversation with him. 

Apparently David’s response to Jason telling him to stay TF away from me was to threaten to come to our house. Then when Jason asked what Army unit he was with (information he already knew) that David responded with the police code for homicide: 1-8-7.

There is in fact the 187th in that area, but Jason said it was clear the way he responded that David was in fact threatening to kill me (or us.) 

He said he had prepared himself in the event that David might show up and promised me that David would have never made it past the driveway… but still. 

But now that I’ve fed my complex about the man… 

I went on to explain to Jason why I got so much into the Martial sports and why I also pushed back when he was thinking about a job in Alaska many years ago, I explained about my dreams and my St Patrick’s based depression cycle – it’s my fear of David. It’s always been my fear of David… and while I have in more recent times convinced myself that perhaps there had been nothing to really fear and it was silly of me to hold onto all of that… Now I feel my fears have been legitimised. So that’s something I guess….

Big Girls Don’t Cry

I’ve said it before – I hate to cry over men. Really it’s more of a hate to let them see that I’m crying over them. Eventually, the closer I get and the longer I know them the more likely they are statistically to witness an outpouring of emotion I am unable to control before I get away. Nevertheless, it’s been awhile… But I cried over a boy this morning.

It wasn’t a romantic related issue at least… I am for the most part past those days of my youth where I may or may not have sobbed over a mean boy or two.

I can’t go into too many details – he wouldn’t appreciate the world knowing, he’s asked me in the past to not put other related details out here in blogland a time or two over the past few years.

However; today this man suggested that he is not good enough to be my friend. He is not a friend I deserve… He told me to give up on him. It reminded me of the time my husband told me he had always thought that I was too good for him and that one day I would leave him for a better man (he told me this back in 2008 after the thing with David blew up.)

My heart just about broke.

I’m not going to give up on him… I haven’t yet over the many years I’ve known him. I’ve made it clear to him that I won’t give up on him and that I still love him – he means too much to me. He seemed to appreciate that.

I had a good cry after it was all done. He would have had no idea, naturally, what I was doing in that moment.

I know I could probably save myself a lot of hurt having let our friendship end years and years ago… but he said once that we need to stick together, me and him… and you know, I intend to keep that promise.

There Are Worse Things I Could Do

*Featured image from Pinterest.com

In the car today, I introduced my children to some of my fave Broadway songs – which included a handful from both Grease and Grease 2.

I told my 5 year old son that Grease Lightning is about a car, which peaked his interest naturally… and when they sang “The chicks’ll cream for Grease Lightning,” he piped up excitedly  that they were singing about Lightning McQueen!

…”They sure are son!”

LOL

Anyway, I started to get nostalgic over these movies. I used to watch them all the time with my good friend Courtney when I was 14/15 – in fact we watched them the very night that we took these photos (previously noted I wouldn’t show all these – but hey, what the heck…) :

me

I don’t believe I’ve written about this night on the blog before… Though I have in other more extensive writings about Wyatt – these pictures were taken for him. We were at the hotel I was staying at with my mum and littlest sister just prior to moving to Ethiopia. I got my own room and got to have Courtney come stay for an extended sleepover. We took some similar pictures of her too, just because we thought it was fun… I did find one surviving one of her in the stack of pictures – but naturally I will not show such here as it really is none of my business to share that kind of photo of someone. Regardless of if it was taken with my camera at the time…

Anyway, I got nostalgic and started watching Grease this evening, then discovered Grease Live on Netflix so I watched that too (and am currently watching Grease 2 as I write this lol)

I’d like to note that Vanessa Hudgens played Rizzo in Grease Live last year – Wow. When I realised she was Rizzo it took me aback just because last I really paid attention to her was when she was a goodie two-shoes type clean cut character in Disney’s High School Musical.

She certainly has grown up… and while I would not have initially expected her to be a Rizzo type; she blew it out of the park. I was amazed at her talent portraying such a character… not that I ever thought she was particularly untalented or anything… but… still.

Let me just illustrate here for those of you that haven’t seen it for yourselves – this is Vanessa Hudgens singing my fave Grease song, my fave Rizzo scene as it is:

 

I’ve talked before about Rizzo being my dream role and that I relate to the character, based a lot off of this particular song… I won’t discuss it much further here – you can click on those links if you are interested in what I had to say about that.

I’ve started to think; however, now that I am rewatching these movies for the umpteenth time if there were somewhat subtle influences for me overall – I’ve mentioned this topic in general regarding other movies influencing me on other ideas before – I’m wondering if maybe my penchant for the “bad boy” might have originated here. Though, let’s face it many many of us tend to fall for those types because they give us a sense of excitement – am I wrong, ladies? 😉 Sometimes we may also think we can change them or that they are softies underneath their hard exteriors – like Danny putting on a show in front of his friends in spite of himself. To be fair, I was already dating a bad boy at the time Courtney and I were obsessing over the movies – though I had seen it on stage for the first time a good year before I met him.

I just realised too that Grease 2 has Sharon often handling a cigarette holder:

grease2_still_13

Image cropped from an image on imgarcade.com

That played into my psyche, perhaps… Perhaps I am reading too much into that… but this along with Bullets Over Broadway is the likely reason I decided I myself would start using them in high school. Now I have three. I don’t smoke nearly as often anymore… just socially and usually with a drink in my other hand…

img_31271

In High School I had the same as the plain black one – but that eventually broke, so this is a replacement of the exact same kind. These both have crystal filters which somehow ease my mind that my smoking isn’t AS bad if I’m using them LOL (Don’t smoke regardless, kids… )

I also have a rosewood one that I rarely use simply because i am always fucking losing it! It’s misplaced again… smh… so I’ll have to use a picture from Amazon. It’s hand carved, mine looks most like the darker wood one. I actually love it – even though it is carved and unable to hold filters, it makes the smoke flow really smoothly. I’m gonna have to order extra of them, gosh…

61vsl6sb5gl-_sx522_

I also just realised that in one scene at least, Sharon is using one that has a gold top like my other filter one… except… it’s PINK. OMG. I need that in my life… LOL

Anyway, this post went off in a direction I didn’t intend… so I’ll bring it back around to wrap it up, haha. Basically – I suppose I should say at this juncture: Yes, I have vices. Yes, I can be a sarcastic bitch on occasion. Yes, I prefer the bad boys – I have a gut reaction to lust after them – even though I know they likely won’t ever truly change… and I may have had a pregnancy scare as a teen. I may have contracted an STD in my past… I may have gone with “a boy or two” …But, you know, there are worse things I could do.