archivally safe label adhesive

today, right now, i love me because of something a friend wrote and a commenter said. my friend wrote that she was always questioning seeing the world beyond the labels she was taught. a commenter wrote their own blog post in the responses that as an expert she declared my friend a label perpetuater. and i felt validated: i label. happily. gladly.

i think i was born to archive because i love labeling. americans (label) love labels (label), and highly identify with their jobs (labellabellabel!!!).

i was actually taught not to identify with the american dream of the label of job, but i’ve actually learned to embrace my job label. i seriously love being an archivist, and i wear it proudly like a badge, like that one time i was on a committee with my friend Koichi (japanese immigrant, archivist, really great guy) who basically steered for us both (proactive, Type A).

the weird catch is that i loved being an archivist before i was one professionally (graduate student worker), took a mental break from loving it (harsh reality), and now love it again that it’s threatened (disabled).

double threat: i’m so disabled i have a hard time working the number of hours my boss expects–and, well, i’m contracted for (supervisor)–and i’m so disabled i have the threat that really i can’t keep up with the damn job (sad).

(are the labels getting boring? [concerned, sensitive, paranoid])

so, i love these labels: i embrace these labels. weirdo, wife, alternative mother, archivist, and, the dreaded, DISABLED.

much love friends, lovers, enemies,
xoxtine

PS: you know what label i do hate? “Grammar Nazi.” i prefer “Grammrrr Grrrl.”

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Nail Me to the Couch!

i don’t know what is going on with me today, but i am super sensitive to sound.

it all started with Julia Roberts (laugh, don’t laugh, i don’t care!). for some reason i wanted to watch Runaway Bride (so sue me for bad taste), and i assumed it would be background noise while i convo-ed with a friend.

OMG no! i couldn’t quit watching the tv because it was all i could hear. and i had it turned down to whisper mode, but still, all i could hear was Joan Cusack. Julia Roberts sounded like an unhearable ghost, but lively Joan, she goofy side-kick squawked at me for all 15 minutes i watched it. Richard Gere tore through my brain like the cockroach fart-voice in Naked Lunch.

my husband’s voice breaks the sound barrier—and him microwaving his lunch was like slamming doors in a home built in 1900, echoing through my head with wild reverberation! shook my brain like the physical slam you feel from those heavy wooden doors unlike any modern thing.

my cat sweetly purrs in my ear on the couch behind me, a favorite sound. all i hear is a contractor driving nails installing a new roof—ow! ow! ow! bam! bam! bam!

if someone with a didgeredoo walks up to the door, i’m moving out.

ok, so you get it. every sound thunders. but why? what is this feeling? i think i am tired. i think i am very tired. i slept on the couch til what my body said was 3:30 am, which is not good sleep, but really the clocks turned back so it was 2:30 am. 3:30 physiological is not so great. then up at 9:15, which was supposed to be 10:00, but still… had looked forward to sleeping til 11:00 for some reason.

hammers, nails, super-sonic, sound-barrier blasts. i need a nap i think…

Bipolar, with Love

i guess i am having an existential crisis, partially brought on by a pain flare. PS this is the Queen XOXtine you hopefully know and love—so I guess that it’s even more existential that i am exploring my identity. why are we who we are? what is this? i’m supposed to be “creative” because that’s what that is about bipolar, right? do you all have that stupid stereotype in your countries, by which i really do mean whatever country you live in or hale from?

there’s a very influential woman in the US named Kay Jamison, and if i recall both a Ph.D. and M.D. in psychiatry. she’s like the goddess of all things bipolar. her novel, “Touched with Fire: Manic-Depressive Illness and the Artistic Temperament” is all about how geniuses are secretly bipolar. so… i’m an artistic genius simply because i got the Russian Roulette of inherited bipolar? i actually might be because i do create objects ‘darte sometimes, but that’s mostly when i’m manic. many people like the high of mania, but i hate it because i know i’m about to do something stupid i’ll regret.

but there’s also the opposite of Kay Jamison: “He was quiet and kept to himself mostly, but he was kind and polite…” then he goes out and randomly shoots a roomful of theater-goers, and the news has a hey-day with his mental illness. they interview all those “nice” neighbors, then interview “experts” on manic-depressive personalities and how if you look just right at the angle he mowed his lawn you can clearly see he is mentally ill.

here’s what happened to me at the job i’ve had over six years: i kept my mental illness to myself until i just broke down. to keep it simple, private, and secret, i told my boss i had a “major depressive disorder.” i hated lying, but who understands bipolar but the bipolar? then i couldn’t keep that under control either. me and my boss were working alone, side-by-side, and i casually said, “i’m actually bipolar, and since i have the library access (i’m an archivist btw), my psychiatrist wants me to read all i can on it.” he said, “you’re bipolar?” i said yes, and in all complete seriousness with no joke he said, “Does this mean you’re going to kill me?”

my heart fell through the floor, i felt puny. i was disgusted and sad. since then he’s learned to be on my team, and he’s one of my greatest supporters. but getting there was extraordinarily hard and still takes coaching

co-worker: “she was such a sweet archivist and seemed happy and friendly in the lunch room.” cut to news reporter— “but, Ms. Pixie had a terrible secret. SHE WAS BIPOLAR!”

 i have no regrets that we got rid of TV no sensationalized crud to clog my mind. no third grade records brought out of a dusty basement that said, “seemed withdrawn from other students,” twisted into a grown-up life of haunting terror. UGH!

and PS, i might change my name a lot. i’m still looking for that “me” that’s out there somewhere.

hearts and rainbows,
Chrissy Pixie