Deep Down To My Core Archive

Dear Body

Posted March 18, 2019 By kmarrs

I’m sorry I have hated you for so long. Misguided in ideas that I was supposed to be a girl and society’s version of what a girl should look like.

Stretch marks don’t give my body character? Bullshit! They are there because my body held and grew three children. They are a beautiful celebration of the lives I gave birth to. I would no sooner fault a tiger for it’s stripes.

This does not define me, but it tells a story.

The weight I carry? I know it doesn’t help my fibromyalgia and I would like to lose some weight in the name of being healthier. But not through shame and mistreatment. Withholding calories out of shame for my shape does no one any good. Increasing my overall daily calories, but spreading them through the day so that I’m eating smaller meals, but more frequently, is the answer to both loving and respecting my current body, while gently shaping it to a healthier form.

And if this just never happens? I will not feel shame. Just like my stretch marks, my current form is the result of carrying three babies in my core. It’s also the result of 20-30 years of intense mental health meds. I feel no shame for this meds, I feel no shame for how they shape my appearance.

Make-up? Hair? Lack of both? Even if I was a girl, it is not society’s job to tell me what I’m supposed to look like. I do not choose to paint over my self portrait as a means of hiding who I am. And hair is just not something I’ll ever be able to work with. And that’s fine. The me I present is the me I am happiest with and there are no apologies offered.

I am, however, struggling with my breasts. I’m torn between hating them and indifference. They are a source of physical pain as the weight of carrying them destroys my back. They are a source of mental pain as they are a huge trigger to my dysphoria.

It is noted, though, that I used to appear to enjoy them, as I flaunted what I was given. What can I say? I was hungry for attention and breasts were a means of feeding that hunger. Ironically, a breast’s sole purpose in life is to feed… hungry babies. And a wept over my inability to produce milk. I wept over how such a large burden, a large weight against my shoulders, could fail to do their one intended purpose.

So how could I feel loyal to them?

The patriarchy says I am to have a painted face, long silky hair, and large firm breasts.

I reject the patriarchy.

So I will work on refusing to hate my breasts any longer, as that is a self destructive emotion, but I can still elect to be done with them. I do intend on getting a breast reduction as soon as I can. But I will not hate myself over the fact this could take years. I have bigger health emergencies in the forefront.

And nonbinary presentation does not equate to androgyny. So I can be me and still have my breasts, I tell myself. Anything to help the dysphoria.

The patriarchy find so much wrong with my body. The patriarchy has taught me to internalize those “imperfections” and hate myself for them. To want to mold and sculpt myself into me “perfect from”.

Yet in all the ways my body has truly failed me, having cellulite isn’t even related to any of them. I don’t need to contour and cover my face with makeup to fight my anemia. Long flowing hair only hurts my headaches and anxiety.

I am who I am and I will love myself for every bit of my appearance. I can work on being healthier physically as I work on being healthier mentally. The two can coexist and I don’t need to hate myself. Especially since society tells me I should.

But then society is trying to sell me something.

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Travel

Posted November 2, 2015 By kmarrs

I don’t know why but of all the places in the world, I want to visit Greenland and Iceland the most.

Don’t get me wrong, I’d love to travel Europe and visit all the museums and historically significant places.  It’s a dream.  But if I were to only leave the USA once, I’d want to go to Iceland and Greenland.  They just to me seem to be the most beautiful places in the world.  Plus, they aren’t exactly tourist hot spots so it wouldn’t be so… crowded.

I don’t know.  I really don’t know what it is.

I bet there is a cruise that goes through the region and will stop at different ports of interest.  Or, I’d just take a flight and stay at different motels as I explored each country.  I’d need a few weeks to do it.  Maybe when my kids are grown and I’m done with my schooling I can reward myself with spending a summer doing just that.  I don’t know.

But…

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I Don’t Really Hate Math, Of Course

Posted September 30, 2015 By kmarrs

I feel like I bit off more than I can chew, taking two math classes at once. Either way, it would have been two classes at the same time, but I might have paired it better if only one class was a math class, and they weren’t both 15 weeks long. The next 15 weeks are going to be stressful.

The thing is, I know I can handle it. I’m scared I can’t, but that’s how I am. I never give myself credit.

What I don’t know is if I’ll survive this term with a perfect 4.0. I’m having to let go of some impossible standards. There are only so many times I can work a problem before I give up and admit defeat. Defeat isn’t the end of the world. It only feels like it is. Defeat simply means I need a little help and that’s ok. It has to be. I’m not perfect.

I’m not perfect.

Which the insane part is I long ago accepted I’m not perfect, and yet I hold myself to the standard of perfection when it comes to my academics. I know it’s because I know I’m capable of great things. But I’m still only human. As much as I hate to admit it, I’m human and I make mistakes. Or I simply don’t understand everything with perfect clarity. And that’s ok. The standard I hold myself to is an impossible standard and that standard is not ok.

I repeat, mostly to myself because I’m the one not listening, holding myself to a standard of perfection is not ok. It’s not healthy. It has me obsessing over every miserable point loss, and spending hours reviewing what I already know because I’m afraid I’ll forget something come test time.

I can’t do this to myself. I’m fighting a hard enough battle as it is, why do I insist on purposely making it worse?

I need to stop.

So.

So what if I get a B? That’s still above average. It’s a passing grade. It’s more than acceptable to any rational human being.

My perfect 4.0 won’t last forever. At least it’ll be better if it’s because I’m not perfect, versus not doing the work. I’m putting in the effort. It shows. I’m getting the vast majority of the material even. I’m just… tired? Not perfect. And in my mental and physical exhaustion, I make mistakes,

I might even pull off an A in both classes. All this stress over my GPA might be for naught. Either way, I need to just let it go. Accept what is and let go of what can’t be.

I just. This is hard for me.

All I am right now is a student. I don’t have a job to excel in. I have motherhood, of course, but that isn’t all I am. School is what is taking me away from my kids so I at least need to make the best of it. Be the best at it. No. Just do my best.

I need to do my best and accept that no one’s best is perfection. No one is perfect. I need to accept I’m certainly not the exception.

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It’s a Metaphor

Posted September 21, 2015 By kmarrs

Have you ever just known you were solving a math problem wrong but you were so far in you just had to see where it took you just incase, but 10 minutes later you’ve confirmed it had to have been wrong all along? Oh, and you’re not sure when exactly it went wrong?  Sometimes you have all the skills but you just don’t know when or how to use them.  Sometimes you had the skills but that was like a decade ago, and best of luck with that.  Sometimes you never had the math skills, the individual how-tos and you’re just plain stuck.  Sometimes even with all the skills math still throws radicals, insane fractions, and irrationals your way.  It’s all mathematically correct, but it makes zero sense and is just a mess.

Also: this can all be a metaphor for life and suddenly you can relate to my math struggles.

Ah well. I’m going to try isolating the other radical and see what happens.

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Deciding to Live

Posted September 7, 2015 By kmarrs

There is a movie, you can stream it on Netflix, called Veronika Decides to Die. It is about a suicidal woman. At first. If you watch it, by the end you might just find a reason or two to live, if you’re looking for one.

I want all of you to watch this movie.

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The History Of My Faith

Posted August 26, 2015 By kmarrs

I was brought up in a Presbyterian home with a mom that went to church every Sunday and sang in the choir since she was 5. I honestly don’t know my dad’s religious affiliation but I know 3 things for sure: 1) He doesn’t go to church ever. 2) His mom is a Jehovah’s Witness. 3) He is not.

Growing up until I was in about middle school, maybe early high school, I never really questioned religion or faith. I just assumed church was a place everyone but my dad went, and God was something everyone believed in. It wasn’t until my teenage years that I learned it was an option to question and/or not believe. I immediately became an atheist because religion requires blind faith and that’s not something I’m comfortable with. As an adult I’ve learned that’s because of my mental health. Also, science is a thing and I thought I had to believe in one or the other, but never both.

I stayed an atheist, wandering towards agnostic, until I was in my late teens or early 20’s, at which point I really started to look into paganism and Buddhism. The two don’t have to be mutually exclusive. The one recognizes the Mother Earth as a powerful force, the other helps you find inner peace during your time on Mother Earth.

Somewhere in my early to mid 20’s I finally admitted that yes I do admit there is for sure something bigger than me out there, and no I have no idea what to define it as, but organized religion has some serious problems. I was comfortable with that, while exploring Buddhism as more of a way of life, and less of a religion.

Then when I was in my very early 30’s my younger sister was diagnosed with a failing liver and it started to fail her much faster than the doctors anticipated. Within 6 months she went from it being a problem, to her only having 90 days to live. That’s when the prayer warriors came out of the woodwork. For all intents and purposes my sister should probably be dead. She wasn’t even fully eligible for the needed transplant until about a month after her 90 days were up. But the prayer warriors prayed and prayed, the doctors saw something in her, and she made the list in time. The prayer warriors kicked it up a notch and started prayer not just for a donor, but for the donor’s family. Someone would have to lose their life for my sister to extend hers. Even then she had a meld score of 40 and was days if not hours from death when she got her new liver.

During all that trauma I made a pact with God, the details of which you can read about in my intro post. After he saved her, and I do believe it wasn’t just science, I could no longer deny a belief in a named high power. Despite this belief, I still don’t claim a named religion. Frankly, I don’t proclaim to know which one is “right” where the rest are wrong. From there I’d just pick the most peaceful, only they have all done horrible things in the name of their God and for their religion. I will say I like the idea of Christ, but I struggle with the water to wine, walking on water, and Resurrection. Sorry, but science.

So I’m left with a contentment that there is most probably possibly probably a higher power. I’m comfortable with the thought he’s the one who said bang, creating the universe. I think it’s logical that those first 7 days were in god years and therefore a lot more like billions of Earth years per Bible day. I refuse to name my spirituality.

All this left me thinking over the power of prayer. I mean, I had prayed before, even in my questioning years, but never with much belief, and I never stopped to listen to see if I’d been heard. But this past spring time after time a call for prayer went out and it was answered. So maybe I too can be heard, if I pause to listen back?

I present to you: Dear God, It’s Me Karen

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