humor · Spiritual

Bless my Gluten-Free Heart (and keepith it away from cookies)

Deadly, y’all. Like, SINFUL.

BY: JANA GREENE

Forgive me, Fathter, I have sinned.
It has been about 23 minutes since my last food confession.

I heard that Oreos make gluten free cookies, and the next thing I know, I’m covered in cookie dust and “double stuff,” wondering where it all went wrong.

As penance, I shall layeth here like a giant slug and zap myself with the diabetes monitor until I pass out in a sugar coma, or reach critical mass of guilt and cry about it, whichever comes first (maybe both. I don’t know….I’m not Catholic.)

Lord, give me this day my daily Metformin, and forgive me my gluttony, as I will forgive Nabisco for making damn gluten free Oreos eventually (but probably not until I polish off the box.)

Jesus take the wheel, as I’m too bloated to fit behind the steering column presently.

In conclusion, I will say six “holy cows,” because DAMN milk would have been SO good with these, but all I have is Oat Milk, because, well you know, I’m a health nut and all…

Amen.

Poetry · Spiritual

The Wobbly Phoenix (and other thoughts on depression)

Photo by Andrew Neel on Pexels.com

BY: JANA GREENE

Not feeling brave today, on a day that seems to demand bravery.

It’s demanding a lot of things….

Like being a mature adult,

And keeping the lid on a major freak-out.

Like putting one foot after another,

Which necessitates getting out of bed,

Which itself

is an exhausting prospect.

I don’t feel like playing along anymore,

In this body that is now

More scratch-and-dent

Than wonderous and miraculous,

In a mind that sells the prospect of doom

Like it’s going out of style or something.

In a Spirit that is strong,

But exceedingly tired,

Because every damn thing is exhausting.

And oy vey!

Don’t even get me started

With the state of the world!

Still…

There’s no way out but through,

And there’s no way through

But to start by standing,

Even if I’m wobbly and scared.

“So BE wobbly,” I tell myself.

“It’s okay to be scared.

It’s just not okay to give up.”

So on this day that requires bravery,

I wobble.

I tell the fear to shut the f*ck up,

Because it’s getting noisier than

The actual anxiety,

And that’s why I can’t hear myself think.

That’s why I can’t think myself calm.

It’s not the anxiety

Which is borne of circumstances

And wonky brain chemistry,

And judging the state of things

By what appears to be true.

It’s the fear that feeds it

Like some kind of all all-you-can-eat-buffet

With only food that I hate

Or makes me sick.

My anxiety likes to think ahead,

To really have all it’s bases covered,

But for God’s sake,

I must stop

Worrying about the problems

Queued up after this problem

And remind myself

That zero amount of previous freak-outs

Has fixed a single problem

In the history of ever.

I tell myself,

“Girl, you’ve pulled a

‘Pheonix rising from the ashes’

More than once.

Have a little faith!”

So….

So it has to go.

It’s the fear that has to go.

Life feels itchy and uncomfortable

To let it go,

It’s been my companion

For such a long time,

Like a really shitty friend

Who I thought

Was saving you from hurting,

But really,

It’s just hurting me.

Staying afraid

More itchy and uncomfortable

Than existing in fear.

So I’m letting it go,

Just for today,

Because it’s all I can bite off

For now.

One single footfall,

And then the other.

Repeat process

Until steadiness readies,

And I’m able to steady

Myself.

And that will have to do

As bravery

For now.

humor

Follow Your Mid-Life Dreams! (…to the nearest bathroom)

I wish to sleep the sleep of this random “free photo gallery” person. Alas, tis not to be.

BY: JANA GREENE

My dream programming tonight: A playlist…

Dream 1: In a stadium of some kind. Decide in my dream that this is odd for someone who hates sports. Reckon that it must (obviously) be The Pigeon Olympics. Hey, Look! The clouds are raining birdseed! I wonder where the toilets are in this joint? *Spends remainder of weird dream ambling around The Clockwork Orange Stadium looking for a bathroom. Finds a street parade, box of Lucky Charms, and a single boot. No potty, though. *Queue anxiety attack.*

Dream 2: I am at college, which is weird because I never went to college. Lose the combination to my locker, which is weird because do you even have lockers in college (!?) Continue nightmare by individually try to open all 100 lockers on the hallway wall with increasingly full bladder. See high school crush, realize I’m wearing pantaloons and nothing else. Now I can’t find the bathroom. Every door I knock on is a classroom full of farm animals. Bless them, I’m distracting them from the studies, and doesn’t every donkey in America deserve a quality education? End up ducking into in a closet out of desperation that is housing a tractor, but still can not empty bladder. Too worried about rusting important farm equipment.

Dream 3: I’m at Disney World in Epcot partaking in French Fries of the World, which is kind of like when Epcot hosts that event where you walk around the “countries” sampling international wines, except not at all like that. I am carrying around two things: A glittery plastic packet of ketsup, and a roll of toilet paper, in case the unimaginable happens and a bathroom at Disney is out of toilet paper. Every sample location features a majestic, roaring waterfall. Holy cow, I need to pee. Ask costumed, licensed Disney Character where the bathroom is. They perform a weird skit pantomiming pulling down their invisible pants and squatting over a “toilet,” which is really just a manhole, so yeah, thanks a lot, Donald and Daisy. Sheesh. Everyone knows y’all don’t even WEAR pants. Experience inter-dream panic attack because surely I’m going to pee my pants in the Happiest Place on Earth, and I bet they don’t let people with wet pants ride to the top of the giant golf ball.

Okay, I’m REALLY awake now with extremely full bladder. Hobble to the real, actual bathroom wondering if this TOO is yet another dream and I’m about to pee in a potted plant or something. Peeing in actuality is a huge relief, but can I be honest? Pretty anti-climactic after all my adventures in dreaming.

Welcome to mid-life: You ALWAYS have to pee. Sleeping is impossible. Every single dream feels like the result of eating a whole bag of nacho Doritos before bed; and every dream features the quest for a bathroom, and ends with an an anxiety attack. It’s a real swell time.

*Sigh.