Stars and Scales

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The Zodiac.

It’s a strange issue and one I don’t know much about. I know I’m a Libra. I know my dad is a Virgo and my mom is a Taurus. I know my husband is a Leo and my daughter is a Scorpio. I know more or less the dates that apply to a few of the signs and I know which follows which.

As for the characteristics of every sign, I don’t know much about that. Also, I don’t know how much of that I actually believe. Just out of curiosity, I read my horoscope whenever I come across it, but I don’t go looking for it. I usually do it just to see how right or how wrong these people are. Sometimes, whatever they describe doesn’t even remotely reflect reality. But sometimes they hit the nail right on the fucking head that it’s scary.

Like on April 10, 2016, I was still very early on in my pregnancy, barely into my 8th week or so, and kept it a secret as best as I could. On Facebook, I would never talk about it, or talk about it in a cryptic way that confused anyone who came across my feed. But the excitement within me was wild. I kept imagining what it would be like to be a big and full pregnant lady, what it would feel like to give birth, what it would feel like to be a mother, and had such high hopes for my child and what he or she would be like. The horoscope I read on that day could not have been more accurate:

“Although your energy is a bit scattered today, you’re still rather optimistic about your prospects. However, you could be unclear as to which future vision you are working toward. Your imagination conjures up vivid thoughts now, but your friends find it difficult to understand exactly what you are trying to achieve. Go ahead and let your colorful dreams inspire your actions, but keep your message to others as simple as possible.”

I think that when it comes to personality, the astrology people could sometimes get it super fucking wrong. There are all these articles that describe you according to your zodiac sign, like how long do you hold a grudge, what your talents or hobbies are, what kind of lover you are, and all that bullshit.

For example, I just read a post about what kind of procrastinator a person is according to their Zodiac sign. It said that a Libra is a childish procrastinator:

“If you don’t want to do something, you’ll put it off as long as you can. You think that it’s unfair that you should do something you don’t want to do and you hate the feeling that there are forces that are making you do it. It upsets your whole harmonious vibe.”

I call bullshit. Libra should be the sleepy procrastinator:

“You love sleep. You love sleep more than you love yourself. You will put off everything including living your life if it means you can hit the snooze button once more.”

Yep, that sounds more like me.

But I still like Zodiac-related stuff. I’m a proud Libra and do believe that this sign fits me perfectly. I always seek balance in my life – a balanced lifestyle, a balanced diet, a balanced relationship with my husband, as well as trying my best to convey a sense of balance at home to keep my child healthy and happy.

Unbalance in my universe is a great source of distress for me – whenever I witness any form of violence, hate, injustice, war, fights, statements and expressions of racism, antisemitism, homophobia, transphobia, bigotry, sexism, and any other shit this great big white patriarchic society has to offer. All these things set me off-balance and disturb my inner-peace so much it can sometimes affect even my physical health.

This is why I constantly search for the positive. While living in Israel, a lack of balance is a major part of the deal and I get all this shit thrown at me from every side. The only way to reclaim my inner-balance, the one that a natural-born Libra craves, is to counter all this shit with a nice big healthy serving of etherial positivity.

This is why I always end my blog posts with peace and love.

Peace, love and Yin Yang

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Little Flusher

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I’m currently potty-training my daughter. For those of you who have been following me, you know I’ve been planning to use the potty-training party method. And though I put in a lot of effort, spent more money that I can afford, and for a whole month, tried to plan this day down to the last detail, it was a flop. My daughter had no interest in it and didn’t cooperate in the least. But I don’t want to talk about it or revisit it in any way (yes, it was that bad).

So I pulled the plug on the party early on in the day because if my daughter wasn’t enjoying herself, I didn’t want her to relate potty-training with this sort of negativity. I gave her her lunch, then we both crashed for two hours, both exhausted, totally party-pooped so to speak, from the useless morning.

When I woke up in the afternoon, I was still committed to go on with the training but decided to take a more easy-going nonchalant approach. I woke up my daughter and gave her the gift-wrapped loads of big-kid underwear I got for her. I let her pick out the pair she liked the most (it was the one with Elsa on it) and led her to the bathroom where she found a brand new potty waiting for her. She didn’t put up any fight, didn’t resist any suggestion I made. She just picked up on my calm demeanor and went for it.

She got it on the second try.

Read it again – she got it on the SECOND try! And it was a considerable amount of pee, too! I couldn’t help but scream. I lavished her with praise and hugs, then gave her a treat and let her pick a present from the box of surprises (a box full of little toys, individually wrapped).

Later on that day, I got my parents and in-laws to come over for the actual party. That part of the plan went by smoothly, with a couple of accidents on the way, but no big deal, and she still got the big presents from everyone – a toy guitar, a set of watercolors and paintbrushes, a set of plastic food, and a gorgeous Fashionista Barbie from me. I should be honest though, I was kind of hoping she won’t like the Barbie so I can keep it for myself. But she did. And now this Barbie, that really looks like Beyonce, is having a mad affair with my daughter’s Michael Jackson doll. She keeps making them kiss!

For the past few days, we’ve been keeping up with her training as much as possible. She has her share of accidents, as is to be expected, but we remain with our easy-going approach, patiently and gently encourage her to practice on the potty, and remind her that if she practices without making anything, she gets a treat, but if she practices and does make in her potty, she gets a treat AND a present. Positive reinforcement is always the way to go, and I’m too proud of her to not give her everything for her success.

It’s still a challenge for us, because although I want her to stay in her underwear during the whole day, if we ever leave the house, we’re tempted to make her wear her nighttime underpants (basically a pull-up diaper with exciting graphics). I’m no expert in this but I think that for the first few days, it should be ok. Once she gets better and manages to hold it for a longer time, we’ll let her stay in her big-kid underwear and carry around her potty everywhere we go.

I won’t stress her out, but I really hope she’ll be fully trained by Shavuot. I would love to see her wear a new holiday summer dress without a bulky diaper sticking out. She’ll be so super cute and I’ll be so super proud!

Peace, love and itty-bitty panties in the laundry make me happy!

Tales from the Crapper

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I’ve been away for two weeks, stayed at home and did mostly nothing.

BUT! I did work a lot on a potty-training party plan for my daughter. It’s going to be a whole production. I’m planning to start on April 21 (i.e. the first day of Passover chol hamoed, so I get to spend lots of free time with my daughter and her potty) but because of the huge production this is going to be, I already started getting everything set up. I got tons of shit to buy (specifically a list of 32 items, not including groceries), and plans for decorations, gifts, tricks and schedule.

I think my biggest problem, aside from the fact that all the edible treats have to be kosher for Passover which significantly narrows down the options and variety, is that my daughter is a straight-up two-year-old who doesn’t give a flying fuck what her mother has to say. Of course, this is why I’m putting myself through all this headache to make her potty-training time as pleasurable and as fun as possible, so that maybe, with treats and presents and gifts and surprises and toys, she might actually go for the potty every once in a while. If making poop-shaped-and-colored pieces out of fimo is any indication, this is the most complex project I ever had to undertake, second only to creating life. So now this life is two and needs to trade in her diapers for big-kid underwear and soil the hell out of them before actually getting the hang of this high-tech shit known as the toilet.

On the other hand, I’m also trying to take this as easy as possible. I say, if this party does what it is supposed to do and my daughter comes out of it fully trained, that’s awesome. And if it doesn’t, no biggie. At least we had a party, and what kid does not like parties? My daughter is definitely a party-lover. Every day she comes home from daycare and I ask her what she did today, she always says “MESIBA!”

Of course, the daycare doesn’t have a mesiba every day, but that’s what she likes, so yeah. We’re having a potty-training party.

Peace, love and poop

Blood Is One

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Sometimes, things happen that bring to the forefront my reality as an only child. It’s things that people with siblings don’t think about because their reality is different from mine and the things that they feel and experience are things that I will never feel and experience because of my “only-child” status.

A couple of weeks ago, I came across one of the older calendars that my sister-in-law designed for the family. This one featured my wedding photo on the cover with my husband’s family – me, him, his parents, his pregnant sister with her husband and kid, and his brother with his wife and three kids. Basically, a clan more than a family. I thought about what this picture would look like if it was one with my side of the family – me, him and my parents. Nothing more and no one else.

Back in high school, I had a conversation with a friend about this reality. I said something that she, as the second in a family of three kids, will never have to wonder about.

“I will never be an aunt,” I said. Being an aunt by marriage to my husband’s nephews is never the same. Being a quasi-aunt to my cousins’ kids, definitely not the same.

I will never know the joy of celebrating my brother’s Bar Mitzvah. I will never dance with my sister at her wedding. I will never be the cool aunt every child wish they had. I will never feel the comfort of a sibling’s shoulder when crying about the loss of our grandmother. I will never feel the envy and frustration of having to share my mother’s love and attention with my younger siblings. I will never be the older sister who helps my baby sis buy her first menstrual products, and I will never be the young sister whose older brother beats the shit out of any man who dares to hurt me.

All the good things and the bad things of having brothers and sisters – something that my own mother knows all too well, being the second in a family of 10 kids – I will never know. And it’s nobody’s fault.

It’s not mine, and it’s not my parents’ fault either. If it was up to them, I’d have at least three siblings. All three died shortly after being conceived, and my mother was left to suffer the devastation of this loss. And I only felt and understood this devastation years later.

This past weekend, I was in Bat Yam with my husband and his enormous family – his brother from Philly with his wife and three kids, and his sister with her husband and five kids. It was so beautiful to see my little girl getting along so well with her aunt and uncle and her cousins. And I felt my heart shatter that she will never have any aunts, uncles or cousins from her mother’s side of the family.

And that’s the reality I live in. And that’s the reality that not many people know or understand. In the 36 years of my life, in the reality I was born into and got accustomed to, I have never felt my only-childness so strongly. I have never felt so alone.

Peace, love and grieving for the ones that never were.

Moonless Night

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To end January on a brilliant note, the new PMS Perzine is now out! Purple Moon Spawn is the new name of my zine, but it’s still the same zine, so the issue numbers continue where they left off. This is issue 15.

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It’s 32 pages of a bunch of different things. It includes a stream of consciousness piece, a short fiction story, a look back at 2018 and plans for 2019, discussions about the moon and the stars and all the wonderful celestial unfathomables that be, and more.

Writing this zine came with a degree of difficulty. I think the most difficult zine I wrote to date is Ima Badass. But this difficulty was different.

Ima Badass was emotionally difficult because of the sensitive subject matter – being a mother while being an artivist and a zinester and finding a healthy and manageable balance between the two.

Issue 15 of PMS Perzine was physically difficult. Working the morning shifts, followed by a bunch of appointments and errands during the afternoons, house chores and childcare in the evenings, and short nights cut even shorter by the time it takes me to fall asleep – all these elements made for a very tired badass. This past Tuesday, I complained to my husband about how “this day just doesn’t want to end!”

Being tired out of my wits is not a good state to be zinestering. Inspiration is impossible to come by, ideas about what kind of elements to include in the zine quickly run dry, and many things I tried to write or create ended up in the wastebasket because they sucked. The 32 pages I did manage to add were the ones that I found to be the best ones out of the many others I tried.

I fell into the trap that people keep talking about – how we measure our worth by our productivity. I never measured myself according to what I create, but I think this past month proved otherwise. I pushed myself to near-exhaustion, trying to cram a bunch of activities, plans, chores and errands into a short amount of time, so much so that the very activity that I’m supposed to enjoy (making a zine) became a chore in itself!

I hate this feeling.

And so, as a method of self-care, I decided to space it out a little. One thing per month. Next month, I’ll be focussing on my Canadian passport application. This contributes to the amount of stress in my life to a point where I’m losing all my hair. I ought to charge the Canadian government for my hair extensions, for real!

The month after that… I don’t know. I’ll see when I get there.

But I am not making any (full-length) zines until the right time comes, most likely International Zine Month, when I can thoroughly enjoy it as I did with my other zines.

I consider this “Purple Moon” spawned. Off to the dark side I move.

Peace, love and set the snooze for 14 hours

 


Get messy and follow the bleeder: Like my page, PMS Mess!
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To Hell with Procrastination

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I’m very happy with my progress with my new year’s resolutions. I already got the new bag that I’ve been meaning to get. I also got a cool patch to sew on it (I’ll ask my mom to do it though because she has a sewing machine whereas I have two myotonized hands).

Today, I made a new patch for my Etsy shop. And here it is!

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And, miracle of miracles, I’m actually done with my Canadian passport application. I have an appointment at the embassy in a couple of weeks and I hope to get this out of the way as fast and as swiftly as I can (provided they don’t send me back to Jerusalem empty-handed because of documents I may be missing, which will probably happen because Murphy’s Law is my mortal enemy). I don’t want to spend one more minute with this headache than I have to. Ugh!

For the past week, I’ve also spent most of my time covering my dining room table and my work station with tiny confetti-size pieces of paper while working on the new issue of my zine. A nice little pattern of black, purple and white, as well as star stickers and washi tape stuck all over the place became my new tablecloth/desk, and all is right in my universe.

I also wrote a final piece for the zine and drew my mascot, Twigz, for the last page. I’ll uncover the cover in due time, but for now, I can honestly say it’s definitely in my top three favorite zine covers.

Once the layout is done, I hope to have it printed and ready before the end of the month. That means hauling ass, which I shall do now.

Peace, love and praise the zine mess

 


Get messy and follow the bleeder: Like my page, PMS Mess!
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Twenty-Nine-Zine

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I don’t celebrate New Year’s. In my archives, you can find countless posts from previous years about how I don’t give a rat’s ass about New Year’s.

However, being an avid list-maker, I do make some New Year’s resolutions. It’s nice to see just how right I am about my predictions regarding the resolutions: which ones I will definitely get done and which ones I will avoid until the last minute or not do them at all. For example, I will no doubt avoid getting hair extensions until I’m all out of hair. The one I will not do at all (and probably regret it somewhere down the line) is renewing my Canadian passport. Goddamn bureaucratic shit.

On the other hand, I will most likely do all the zine-related resolutions. In fact, I should probably consider making a list solely for these and call it “My New Year’s Re-zine-lutions”.

So without further ado, here is my list as it stands:

  1. Write and publish a new issue of Purple Moon Spawn:
    I’m still in the process of brainwashing a few ideas for this issue. But I’m very excited at the prospect of writing my PMS Perzine under this new and awesome name!
  2. Plan new Twigz tattoo:
    I wrote about that a few posts ago while I was still working on my metal zine. I want to get my mascot tattooed on my left wrist. I just need to draw her properly enough to be worthy of a permanent fixture on my flesh.
  3. Work on a couple of ZineWriMo minis:45358972_10155563905547471_33584333562314752_o
    I still have some of my blanks waiting patiently for me to fill them up with awesomeness inspired by some of the ZineWriMo prompts. I need to get down to that at some point this year.
  4. Buy new purse:
    Yet another activity inspired by a ZineWriMo prompt. I want a new purse that I can use for my zine tools for zinestering on-the-go. Or just get a purse for the sake of having one that I actually like. I’m not too crazy about the one I currently use.
  5. Renew my Canadian passport:
    Stupid shit. Fucking headache. Canadians just can’t get any more anal. And this coming from an Israeli who also has to deal with Israeli bureaucracy. Seriously, I’d rather be renewing my Israeli passport ten times if it meant not having to deal with my Canadian one.
  6. Set Thursday as my Tai Chi day:
    And at the same time, setting Mondays as my zinestering day. I need to make a schedule for every month ahead of time, like I used to do.
  7. Get hair extensions:
    I feel like I’m going prematurely bald. I told my husband, there will come a day, very soon, where I will go to the hair salon and blow a nice amount of cheddar on extensions, hair dye, layering and styling. Fuck this mop of a hair. I’m sick of it already!
  8. Make a new flyer for PMS Mess:
    I already have a nice flyer for my zine (those of you who have traded with me or bought my zines may remember the flyer featuring Carrie soaked in pig’s blood with the tagline “I bleed it, you read it”), I think my Etsy shop can use one too. Speaking of which, please like my Facebook page!
  9. Reload Rammstein songs on my player:
    I found that every time a Rammstein song comes on my player, the song suddenly stops in the middle, stutters for a bit, then skips to the next song. I need to try reloading the songs and see if it remedies the situation. I can’t stand not listening to “Mein Teil” or “Benzin” all the way through. Pisses me off.
  10. Eat healthier:
    A resolution inspired by my new zine friend (Cheers Frances, if you’re reading this!). I’m thinking of at least improving the state of my breakfast. Tea and toast just doesn’t cut it for me anymore. I need eggs, fresh veggies, and different kinds of cheese, alongside tea and toast. And if I do ever get around to making a schedule for every month, I ought to try to include relevant times for trying new recipes.

I really hope to get through all of these, including the ones I really don’t feel like doing. Wish me luck and I shall wish you a happy new year!

Peace, love and 2019 ways of being