Heartset; Body Image and Beaches in California; It Can Be Brutal


man and woman

“Here’s to Michigan untanned, man-from-Glad skin, chubby bodies that keep us warm in the winter, and loving our neighbor as ourselves.”

I’m home, back from a mini-vacation in San Francisco, California. I had a good time but I hated my body while I was there. I was trying to use my intuition to figure it out while I was in the situation. Was I picking up the vibe from my friend who I was with? He was physically very confident, perfectly tanned, toned, and thin. But he wasn’t very healthy really. He just appeared that way. That’s Hollywood. Was it temporary insanity caused by all the flowers blooming in October? Maybe their intoxicating fragrance went to my head. My readers probably know that overall, I love and accept my body no matter what it’s going through at the moment. Feeling that way about myself, it is part of my acceptance and liberality with others. I accord them the same freedom from judgment in my office and in my life. But the projection from the dominant culture out there was so strong that I felt overwhelmed.

I just used the word liberality and I live in Michigan. We are liberal here as it relates to authentic nature. In our culture, a person is not only free to be themselves, but it’s also a social expectation that you will tell the truth about who you are and get to know your neighbor. None of that is the case in California. Nobody cares and hardly anyone looks at you and smiles. The state culture feels like one giant movie set to me where appearances and image are more important than talking to a friend when you need one or making sure you’re getting enough sleep and not abandoning your guest because of your own issues. Here in the northeast, we still have the old-fashioned value of taking care of one another, a reward for hard work and making sure our communities are liveable.

There is something to be said for basic human decency. If California is so liberal, why are there mounds of trash and graffiti on the freeway right next to million-dollar houses? That’s a prison of true ugliness, not liberalism. Your neighbors are suffering, obviously. How can you live right next to them and ignore their need? How can you throw a banana peel out the window but legislate the protection of trees that are on someone else’s property? How can you act so happy and have so many mental health issues such as alcoholism, an eating disorder, and family enmeshment yet there’s hardly anywhere to get help? Why is the fake movie industry more important than human truth in a so-called democratically-held state?

California Body Image

I’m happy to live in Michigan and be from the East. I’ve decided the so-called fake democracy of the West Coast is no longer for me. My area is very pluralistic and we manage to be kind to one another just fine and pick up after ourselves no matter where we were born.

Oakland, CA2

 

 

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Heartset; Maybe Humans Crave Certain Feelings, not Drugs Themselves


 

That’s a pretty interesting suggestion.  It’s probably not a new one but I sure don’t hear anyone talking about that.  It would mean that you crave the way a drug makes you feel not the drug itself. For me, it’s like craving a song I love. Music is food for me as is dancing or moving my body.

You may say, “Well yeah!” Pardon me if my realization sounds naive or conservative.  I’m not.  I’m an extremely liberal woman but I was born sober, so obviously I’m liberal intellectually, in speaking, and in friendships, not in my hobbies.  I have never craved drugs and when I do try them they don’t affect me.  Go figure.  I’ve used alcohol, been buzzed many times and only drunk once. It does nothing for my feelings at all nor does it make my body change much, good or bad. I’ve used pot maybe five times and it doesn’t affect me. I’ve used different kinds of tobacco and I like the smell of it because it reminds me of jazz, but that’s it. I cannot relate to craving a drug to make my feelings change. That’s as odd to me as thinking that changing my clothes will change my personality.  It’s extremely irrational and makes no sense to me.

I AM exceedingly familiar with my feelings changing though, a lot!!  My feelings have always swung this way and that naturally ever since I’ve been a child.  I am in touch with a range of feelings that as a professionally trained actor, I’m able to evoke or bring to the surface quite easily.  So, it must just be my personality; the way my brain works. It does run in my family, being theatrical, but we are also counselors, therapists, and mediums.  I’m also a musician.  I come from an emotionally expressive family so that was seeded in my subconscious in utero.

What all of this is bringing to light is the fact that if you have an expressive art you can imbibe in, maybe those feelings you’re craving will start flowing and your drug craving may go down.  We all need to let our feelings out.  And what about sex?  I know women tend to be more emotional during sex than men if men are at all, but more sex would be good for women then. Most women are as comfortable with sexual feelings as they are with taking a shower or feeling ill.  It’s just part of having a body.  I know this is diametrically opposed to men.

Men, I don’t know how you deal with your feelings other than drinking.  My 19-year-old son tells me that men do get emotionally attached in relationships even though males don’t get emotional during sex itself.  I know that the emotion of sexual tension that occurs when you’re attracted to a female is very uncomfortable for most men and FEAR is your big emotion; maybe even anger at not being able to control the woman’s sexual feelings? That was some inside information I received yesterday that was fascinating.  So, let yourself “be” in a relationship, talking, feeling bonded to other males and females as friends are very therapeutic for guys.  Also, just letting yourself feel the sexual tension with a woman you like.  It doesn’t mean you have to take any major action on it immediately…I guess.

As a female, I don’t really emotionally need friendships as much as I need sex.  I don’t think many women admit that but that’s definitely the case for me.  Or maybe I’m just far more into feeling my body in its natural state than others are. So it’s more important for me to have a partner than many friendships…eventually.

I’ll follow this blog up with my intuition and findings on the sexual tension between men and women and maybe even women and women and men and men.  That should be compelling and timely. The issue seems to be unraveling our society on all levels. It’s about time, right? This male fear and issue of emotional control are called patriarchy; then it manifests in forced sex. Nada. But are women really completely emotionally innocent in all of this? I really don’t know, seriously asking.

Is it possible that the psychology of sexual predation and sexual harassment is a form of sexual tension that is physically out of alignment because of pent-up feelings? Stay tuned.

 

 

Prose; Publishing Joy


I feel like my baby is about to go off to college.

I’m about to publish my first book and it’s almost time to let it go,

No longer able to control where it goes in the ethers,

Out into the world, warts and all,

Fresh, innocent, never having smelled a book store (yeah right)

Never having gone through the digital or paper mill…

Does that hurt?

My memories, feelings, occurrences, family secrets, pictures,

losses, dates, intimacies, grandparents, babies lost, tears cried,

Oh my god!!!!  Why did I write this memoir????

Stop the presses!  I can’t do this!!!!

I can’t put all of the truths of my life out into the public for perusal and criticism!

Not that anyone will care…but my life has been interesting hasn’t it?

I wrote it so it sounded interesting….yes I did.

Why did I listen to my FRIEND????  She said, “Lisa, write a memoir”

after hearing me tell stories.

Well, what if no one ELSE is the least bit interested?

This is nail-biting territory if anyone reads it.

I seriously do have many mind-bender stories.

What if people think I’m nuts?

There’s no such thing as bad press.

I’m just…a little nervous I guess.

impublishingmymemoir