Monthly Archives: August 2013

I always feel very conflicted about writing about “mundane” things.

I read the results of a scientific study that revealed that a person struggling with poverty is as intellectually impaired as a person who has gone without a night of sleep, or what is equivalent to a 13 point drop in IQ. Constantly. Every single bit of their mental resources are focused on trying to survive, or spinning their wheels in stress, fear, and worry.

With such intense pressure to find a new place to live and do it yesterday at war with lacking an income sufficient to rent the most inexpensive apartments in the five boroughs and — on top of that — insufficient to get into housing lotteries geared toward housing poor people, and losing the insurance that makes it possible for me to afford mental healthcare and therapy, and one of the drugs I need, the trouble I’ve had with focusing on anything at all seems to make rather a lot of sense.

When I went to fill the prescription that I would have to pay out of pocket for, my supposed-to-be-discontinued-on-the-14th insurance covered it, and I only had to pay a dollar.

I immediately thanked Freyr. Profusely.

Despite calling in and doing what I was supposed to do and what I do every month, they had no record of my attempt to reauthorize my pain medication. Stress causes an increase in pain, and pain causes an increase in stress. I’ve also done something to a set of old injuries I acquired in an accident and my knee. Due to the holiday, I’m very unlikely to be able to get a hold of it before Tuesday.

I have half of my health clearance to apply for supportive and/or public housing — the other half is a tuberculosis test, which they do by blood, these days. So Instead of staring at my arm, I’ll have to call them to find out if I’m consumptive in a week.

Someone (nonhuman) suggested to Brand the other day that instead of biting his nails into the quick and silently panicking while waiting for the bus that he attempt to converse with the ginkgo tree at the bus stop. It didn’t especially work, but he was distracted by the lichen patterns.

When I came home, I touched all of the trees on the side of the sidewalk I tend to use while somewhat poorly singing the Medicine Buddha mantra. It’s been a long time since I sang. As in decades.

I checked on the pussywillow, but could not linger because of the landlord. I am thinking that if I can manage to do so, I will take one of the branches when it is pruned and make it into a wand of sorts so that I will have it as a focus to speak with her more easily while I am inside or after I move, since it is very rare that I can have even a few minutes to myself out there without the landlord demanding to know what I’m doing and staring until I leave.

A Month for Freyr: I Love You

you are my heart, beating, wild
wings against an autumn sky

you are the trickle in my veins
rivers rushing over rapids, laughing

you are the calcified stands of bone
ancient forests spread against the horizon

in the deep center of my spirit
a curled fiddlehead unfurls, singular,

If I’m not on time.

Something about the migraine set off various other issues and I’ve been in bed except for when I needed to cook since then. It’s not that unusual or strange for me, or anyone else who has CFS among other things, for them to all blend together into a week or more of near-immobility. But I think stress had a heavy hand in it, and, ironically, I need energy to try to do something about getting through the next month.

It also came with reasonably bad joint pain, especially in my hands and wrists. The stand mixer is hopelessly glutened, and I’d always planned to do all of the kneading myself, anyway — it just seemed more correct, in this context — but as I’ve barely managed to cut vegetables for food, it hasn’t happened yet.

No one seems bothered in the slightest. It’s very confusing and strange.

We were married at home entirely on schedule, and everyone managed to come, except poor R., whom I couldn’t seem to take with me and he couldn’t find me.

And it was lovely.

I plan to write much more, myself, when my hands are behaving, but… well. If I ever wondered if things that happened there were just as valid and important as things that happen here, that’s settled.


Migraine Delay.

When I woke up and became increasingly incapacitated by a migraine, and wondered aloud, “What do you do about a migraine on your wedding day?” Brand responded with, “It’s like miGRAAAAiiiiAAAANES on your wedding day, it’s a free RIIIIeeeeIIII–” Except not nearly as loud as it sounds.

He and his father are, at times, extremely related.

I may be having my here-wedding tomorrow, instead of today, and my elsewhere-wedding today as planned, because sleep seems to be the most rational plan.

The Current State of Bees

A few links to actions you can take, and organizations that need donations.

This first-of-its-kind report found bee-killing pesticides in more than half of the “bee-friendly” home garden plants sold at stores like Home Depot and Lowe’s — with no warning to consumers.

As a mom and organic gardener, I was shocked to learn that I may have unknowingly filled my backyard with hidden bee poisons.

So the next step of our campaign is to turn up the heat on Home Depot’s CEO Frank Blake and Lowe’s CEO Robert Niblock.  They must stop selling these dangerous pesticides.

Write to them.

the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has released rules and new labels for pesticides containing the neonicotinoids imidacloprid, dinotefuran, clothianidin and thiamethoxam. These labels feature a special warning and prohibit use of these products where bees are present. While this is a good sign, it’s not enough. We know that bees need more protection, and we need more research so that we can better understand the impacts of these and other pesticides on pollinator habitat.

Your work and enthusiasm has helped move the EPA, but we need “The Save America’s Pollinators Act” to pass Congress. If you haven’t already, can you call your representative right now to demand that “The Save America’s Pollinators Act” be included in the Farm Bill to protect pollinators?

Call them.

A bill was just introduced in Congress that would ban neonics until a scientific studies could prove no harm will come to bee populations from their use.

Passing this bill won’t be easy. Big Agriculture and chemical companies are already lobbying hard to defeat it. Massive public support is the only chance the bees have. Over 100,000 Greenpeace supporters helped raise the profile of this issue last month. Together we now have a chance to save the bees before it is too late.

Urge your representative to support the Save America’s Pollinators Act and save the bees!

And write to them.

Mrs. Obama understands the importance of pesticide-free organic gardening and the importance of bees for the health of our food supply, our families and our planet.

But since many home garden plants and seeds are pre-treated with these pesticides, the first lady could be poisoning bees without even realizing it.

Ask Michelle Obama to take a stand.


Donation opportunities:

A gift-matching donation to help Friends of the Earth.

EarthJustice also needs help fighting the recent approval of sulfoxaflor, another highly toxic chemical.

And Greenpeace has also been working hard.

A Month for Freyr: Bread and Honey

By necessity, the extent of what I had planned to do for our wedding has been trimmed back severely; however, we will still bake bread, and we will eat it with raw honey.

It must be the simplest thing, though bread for celiacs is never simple or cheap, that anyone can do as an offering, as a devotion, as a way of connecting. Even if the bread is store-bought. If it’s not pre-sliced, it probably works a little better, but he is ever understanding and rarely picky. The heart is what matters.

The grains of the land, the sun, the work, tending, tilling, hoping, waiting, harvesting, milling. Fields rippling in the wind.

(“Fields of Gold” unintentionally starts playing in my head.)

The bread mix and other things it needs, minus eggs, and the raw honey were ordered from Amazon, because I don’t seem to have half of my insurance anymore and the reason I would’ve gone downtown on Tuesday seems to be moot. Also, not having to carry all of it is a distinct bonus.

It will be good to resume the habit of eating raw honey every day, as he would like me to do.

The honey we’ve had has been called “raw” but it is filtered and looks like any other sort of honey, and I feel distrustful of it in terms of fulfilling his request.

I used to cook with sourwood honey when I lived in the south, and there is no source for sourwood up here (you can order it online, but I don’t know if anyone sells it raw), and when I told the man at the honey stand about my love of sourwood, he and the woman both gushed about it. I left with a large container of buckwheat honey, which has a depth and richness that is reminiscent of sourwood, and is overall very, very good. I will eat wildflower and clover honey if I have no other choice, but my preferences lie in the direction of things that are less overwhelmingly sweet.

I tasted honey made from tea trees, which is very expensive and was purchased for medicinal use for someone (facial application after electrolysis treatments), and thought it was intriguing in flavor, but the price point — goodness. Still, if some money lies around, it would be good to have on hand for medicinal purposes.

Making this bread for him, with him, and eating it together… that will be what binds us.

There will be fancy everything elsewhere, with his family. I think I may port my marriage cord over with me, so that we can use it where we both have a corporeal substance, and let his father have the honor of tying it.

Here, I may wind it about my wrist and hand, and the offering bread, the marriage bread.

I have, in recent days, been feeling softer and quieter. Both heavy and ungrounded. As if I am seeping into something, or vice versa. My chest aches over my heart. There is so little room inside the human body for a heart that is trying to become a mountain, a woodland, a lake.

There is a great deal of receptivity in the softness. Whatever is becoming me, or whatever I am becoming, the assent is total, and I drift slowly into a silent place that is like a grotto at the bottom of the ocean. Tide moves unstoppably. There is no argument in me against any of it; I accept it completely. Shifted by currents, and the vast oceans of the sea sweeping through me.