Betting on the Flip.

Heads or tails. Right or left. Buy or Sell. Sign or don’t sign. Begin or don’t begin. End or continue. Stay or go. I’ve been reflecting lately on how we can be going along, living our lives, when we are suddenly presented with a choice to do something very different – or keep things as […]

Spy Girls.

The birth of Agent V – Spy Girl, and her arch-nemesis, Mr. X, was a fluke; a complete accident brought about from the convergence of a Happy Meal toy, several Japanese cartoon and video characters, and a desperate need, on my part, to come up with something that would entertain V when she was seven […]

The Hummingbird Hierarchy.

I don’t know if this happens to other people (though I suspect it does), but I’ll be going along believing something about the world and myself and how everything works, and I’ll have been doing some reading, or thinking, or self-exploration – and I’ll realize something might not be or work the way I thought […]

A Rose by Any Other Name…

V came to me the other day and informed me that she wants to change her last name. She knows I chose my own name and she wanted to know what the procedure was for doing it, and how one picked a name that would harmoniously go with one’s first name, which is, of course, […]

Chronic Relationships.

It can be a very valuable practice to put yourself in your partners’ or loved ones’ shoes and imagine what you are like to live with – then ask yourself whether you could live with you. Think of all your quirks, obsessions, desires, demands, patterns, projections, emotions, problems, past experiences, and expectations. How you deal (or […]

At the Corner of Crazy and Codependent.

This really counts as a follow up to my post, “Emotional Survivalist,” because the two subjects are so related – unhealthy ways of being in relationship that I am really good at! Nobody knows exactly who coined the word, “codependent,” but Melody Beattie brought it into common usage in the seventies. It was originally used […]

The Life-Changing Magic of Not Cluttering Shit Up in the First Place.

While Dad was still living alone, not only did his house start to fall apart, but he also filled it with junk: hoarded 2-liter recyclable pop bottles, food containers, and paper – including both the contents and the corresponding envelope of every piece of mail that entered the house. He also stashed food, afraid he […]

Emotional Survivalism.

I am an emotional survivalist. I am not making preparations for the end-times, don’t live in a bunker, and don’t hoard canned food and batteries. What makes me a survivalist is my historic ability to live on the barest minimum of emotional nourishment. I have a history of taking whatever small amounts of love, support, […]

Driving Lessons.

As a step-mom, you have to be careful not to overstep your boundaries with the real mom; life is a constant negotiation, with strategic planning taking place around many things. V’s mom emigrated here with her mother from the Ukraine; she has her priorities and perspectives and they don’t often match anyone else’s. She and […]