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Sunday, 24 February 2013

Return of the Living Dead, With a Vengeance

Wow! It sure feels good to come back to the land of the living. It's been more than a month since I kicked the painkillers out of my life (along with the Gravol I had to take as a result of the nausea from the narcotics). I still have the pain, and once I get in to see a family doctor I will be asking for pain relief, but in the form of a neuropathic pain reliever called gabapentin. I've had it before, it doesn't give me nausea, and it's mostly none-sedating. I got really dizzy from it at first, but since there was no nausea it was kind of fun. After a couple of days that disappeared and I was able to function normally, albeit with far less pain.

For those who haven't been following my blog, or don't know me personally, I have severe hip joint injuries that require surgery. I was kept on narcotics by my previous family physician who apparently preferred prescribing those to the less harmful neuropathic pain relievers. As difficult as it is to find a new family doctor in Hamilton, Ontario (Canada), I chose to turf the old doctor. I'm sick to death of not getting the help I need from someone who is supposed to be better-educated than I am, yet I'm the one who has had to figure out everything that's been wrong with me.

So, after more than a month without the pills, and about a month without any withdrawal hanging about, my life has done a complete about-face. My brain is alive again, and no longer being a zombie has resulted in a much happier life. Admittedly, it's harder to keep myself amused, but I'm intelligent enough to find solutions to those moments when they crop up.

The determination to come back from the dead has been a result of multiple things. My writing, which I have been doing seriously since last July, is a very big part of that. I wasn't as serious about this blog back then, but with time I've committed to a daily posting. Some days are easier than others, particularly when it comes to finding things to write about, but the further away from the drugs I get, the more I have happening in my life that I feel is worth writing about.

Maybe the writing opened something up inside of me that had been dead for years. I've been separated for a long time, not having any interest in being anything else when it came to dating or relationships. I'm a healthy female with healthy appetites, but the idea of engaging with another human being was beyond me on every level. Timing is everything there, and interest was triggered at the right moment, I guess, because I don't feel that way anymore. If it hadn't been for me starting to talk about things, particularly on this blog, I doubt I would've even noticed a possibility that was staring me in the face. That's not to say anything major has, or will, occur, but the very openness to the idea is a pretty awesome thing for a tough cookie like me.

Then there's the Web TV show. As I've said before, being asked to produce it was the equivalent of a smack in the face with a dead fish when it came to the level of my surprise. My new 'boss' really couldn't have shocked me more, even had he started dancing around on a webcam with a pink tutu - that might have been less surprising actually. I did what was the texting version of a stutter, but somehow we got past a small miscommunication and here I am, producing the show.

The show gives me the opportunity to be a part of something that I feel is important. Since the idea behind the format of the show is to help people, I'm indirectly helping people by being a part of it. As I move forward with the show, getting accustomed to the vagaries of the business, I think the feeling of helping people will begin to settle in more without the distractions of a learning curve. If there's one thing people should realize about life, however, it's that helping others is a great way to feel alive.

These days I'm catching up on things that have been put by the wayside for years. Taxes, weight-lifting, setting up a home as a livable space, giving myself somewhere to work that's a usable space with fewer distractions, working on my book, etc. I put my whole life on the back-burner because I was too freakin' stoned to give a damn, and all because of injuries from childhood involvement in sports. I could continue to use pain as an excuse, and I could continue to numb myself, body and soul, but I'd be wasting my life. It's so bloody short as it is, and living your life waiting for something to happen before you can really live again, is more than just a waste. It should be a criminal offence. I wasn't letting anyone else steal my time away from me, I was stealing it from myself.

Something I've tried to communicate to people for years is the time-life correlation. Your time is your life. If you waste time, you waste life. If someone does not respect your time, they have no respect for your life. I know, that's a bit of an extreme perspective. The problem is, most people don't respect their own time/life. They forget far too easily that the time dripping away is their time to live, and that every second gets them closer to the time when their life will be gone.

I became very conscious of this in my early twenties. Within a year I had six people in my life die. I was closer to some than others, but the loss of people that I knew, every other month on average, is certainly enough to make you ponder the questions of existence. If that year wasn't bad enough, I had a year without death, followed by a year with five more deaths. That's a total of eleven people that I knew, dying within the span of three years, some of whom were very close to me. Two grandfathers, a great-aunt, a former fiance and my first husband, were all included in this group. There were two people I considered friends, as well, one death that was expected because of lifetime illness, and one that was suicide.

So, with all that happened in my early twenties, I learned not to take my time or my life for granted. I learned to grab the bull by the horns and stop worrying what anyone thought when I spoke my mind, or when I lived my life the way I wanted to. I occasionally forget the lessons, but they come back to me once I've strayed too far off my beaten path. I'm being reminded of those lessons now. I'm speaking out, sharing the things that are important, even when I get nervous about it. I try to show all sides of who I am to the people who matter.

Now that I'm back to writing all the time, I also share everything about that writing with everyone who wants to read what I write. Even when that can be a little uncomfortable. I've received a few compliments on my erotica from virtual strangers, which probably made me blush because I didn't realize they were reading it. And then I've had some interesting feedback from people who aren't strangers at all, and that's always the scariest for me.

Writing erotica can lead people to make certain assumptions about you, which are beyond ridiculous. Sure, there may be a personal element involved, and why not? However, not everything is a personal fantasy. Fiction is fiction. If I write something that is personal, and share it with someone it pertains to, that's a really nerve-wracking thing, because you never know how they're going to react. Sometimes it's a great thing, and other times it changes the way they look at you. Of course, if the latter is the case, then it's probably someone who shouldn't be in your life in the first place. Sometimes a fantasy is just a fantasy, to paraphrase Freud.

Even when erotica is based on something personal, the whole story is not going to be factual. You're still writing for an audience that comprises more than just yourself, so the story has to be titillating to the masses. What's the point in sharing it otherwise? You might as well just send it to the person you're writing about. The characters in the story will be somewhat idealized, and many life details will be left out for sheer brevity. There are certain things in real relationships that will make no sense in erotica, because there is no context to support them. Inside jokes only make sense when they're introduced from the beginning of a storyline, and with most erotica there is no beginning. The idea is to cut to the chase as quickly as possible.

Even the most personal of erotica is very much like the movies that are based on real-life events. "Argo" is a good example there. The movie portrayed a situation in which the CIA was largely responsible for rescuing the hostages. In reality, and this was backed up by former POTUS Jimmy Carter, himself, who was POTUS at the time of the incident, it was Canada that was 90% responsible for the rescue. It was a Canadian plan, using Canadian people. Yup! Canadians as heroes - you read that right. We're actually involved in a lot of things no one knows about, but then we don't tend to go waving our Canadian, er, 'flags' around about it either.

Texas Chainsaw Massacre was supposedly based on real events, but if you've read anything about Ed Gein, you'll know how loose that basis was. The serial killer in Silence of the Lambs was also based on Ed Gein, and was far closer to the reality than Texas Chainsaw Massacre. Ed Gein, if you don't know, stole skin from dead women and had the beginnings of a woman's 'suit' that he could wear around the house. He apparently wanted to be a woman. Mad as a hatter, though, seeing as he used actual skulls for bowls, and human skin to make lampshades. He'd never have passed the psych evaluation that would be mandatory for a sex change operation.

So, as you can see, making assumptions about anyone based on fictionalized accounts that are supposedly based on real events, is just a silly thing to do. I'm happy to have people read anything and everything I write, but I felt I had to clarify. Writers of erotica are not perpetually horny, and they do not necessarily wish to do everything they write about. It's like the difference between having a sexual fantasy and the willingness to act one out. Women's erotica gets very, very kinky in much of the published works I've read, but I doubt very much the writers all want to do the things they're writing about. Some of those things are just far too painful for me. Of course, I don't have any body parts that are pierced, either, with the exception of my ears, as well as my nostril once upon a time, but I let that one heal over many years ago. Maybe I'm just a wimp.

The erotica I post online has been normal, everyday sex thus far. No BDSM, no fetishism, and not even any exhibitionism. Very tame stuff if you think about it, and things that most people have no problems doing in their own homes without even having a discussion about it. It just happens to be described very graphically. The mood is set, if you will. Still, if there's anything in life that will make a person feel alive, it's a good sexual encounter, real or imagined. Coming back to life as a former Canadian zombie, it's great to be able to write about stuff like that again. Maybe one day I'll get into writing the really kinky stuff, but for now I'm happy being able to write about the same-old same-old, because even writing-celibacy sucks!