April 6, 2016

Several months ago, you can look back and see the huge falling out I had with my parents. The horrible things they called me, and the financial and emotional disownment that followed. 

It was the best thing that could have happened to me. I feel like I’ve left an emotionally abusive spouse who was controlling me with money, telling me things to keep me small and little. 

I’m no one’s chew toy.  

My daughter spent the day with them today. She told me they said they love me very much and that was the hardest decision of their seven generations of life. 

I told my daughter I would never, ever even consider making a decision like that, and I held her tight. 

March 15, 2017

This evening I was on a panel at SPUR in Oakland, presented by Intersection of the Arts, called Safe Spaces. We discussed the various efforts following the Ghostship fire. With me were members of WABA, Oakland Warehouse Coalition, ProArts, and architect Thomas Dolan, who designed and built the first live-work in the US and had just come from Sacramento proposing new code laws to the Senate. 

It was a huge honor to be on this panel, and I was nervous about being nervous. I wore Rupert’s ring and pictured him in the audience, and it calmed me right down every time. I talked about him, too. 

I talked about why I helped create the Safer DIY Spaces fund, based on my grief of Rupert and the 36 souls who died in the fire two miles from my home five months to the day later. I started with, “Grief is our birthright.” How his death made me feel, among other things, helpless. How much I wanted to help after the Ghostship fire. How I channeled my helplessness and attended a meeting a week later, where I met like minded people that wanted to help, too. 

I haven’t enjoyed public speaking this much in over three years. It really came together, and I’m so relieved. I felt in control and clear. 

I wrapped up my presentation with my ask:

Please send anyone who needs help making their space safer to our website and have them complete an intake form 


Please attend a fundraiser, use our Sparxo code when you have an event with tickets (we get the fees), host a fundraiser for us, or donate to tinyurl.com/DIYdonation

After, I was approached by people with offers of new fiscal sponsorship (3!), lunch by a public policy grad student, and a new foundation that wants to meet me for a possible fundraising role. 

What an amazing evening. 

March 13, 2016

I cried for him last night. First time in a long while. I’ve been afraid of death all day. An acquaintance died last week. I was hoping to see him at the GLC in a few weeks. We are all going to die. I am. My loved ones are. My acquaintances are. Everyone. 

Just gone. His stuff is still around. His earthly possessions. But he’s gone. He’s never coming back. That’s everyone’s destiny. It’s hard to be alive and experience that. 

Tex got philosophical earlier and talked about how we are each on a path. Rupert’s path and my path intersected, and then his ended. Mine is still continuing. Tex talked about my path taking me onto the Cadillac Oscar ad, a three second clip out of hours of footage on the cutting room floor. Rupert’s ex MIL has never met me but has seen me on tv twice. I was there when the term Sparlepony happened, and people in Australia thought I was lying, trying to sound cool. I was there and it’s in Polly’s book. Polly, the original Sparklepony. It’s why I’m blindly headed to the GLC, working for free for four days running the registration booths. Seeing everyone. It’s my path. Tex said some people’s path is life in Walnut Creek, commuting and living isolated in a big house with a few friends and a sexless marriage. ((Shudder)) I shudder but to some, it’s their chosen path and it’s what they want. What they choose. Which means this is what I choose. Every time. I constantly choose my path. 

My path has never been easy. It’s always been interesting. Very fun. Colorful. Full of amazing stories that I love sharing. There’s a picture of me on the internet in a green clown nose laughing incredulously while Frank Chu takes down my number to call for a date. He called, too. Twice. The first to go to Grace Cathedral and I was out of town but really wanted to go. The second to go to the Metreon to see him in the movie of his life called 10,000 Galaxies. I got scared of his illness and didn’t call him back. 

This is my path. Through love and death and Klowns and Sparkleponies and abandonment and the most amazing friendships in the world and motherhood and health and education and Burning Man and wildly rich and uncomfortably poor and lonely and connected and rarely alone. 

I’m glad I have no idea where the path is headed. Is it a path or a wild ride?

February 21, 2017

I have abandonment issues now. If I had them before, which is a possibility though not a certainty, I have them now. 

And they are unproven and unworthy of my heart. 

I’m usually the one to call it quits on a relationship. It doesn’t mean it’s easy or even what I want. It doesn’t mean I’m heartless or uncaring. It can have that stigma, especially, it’s been pointed out to me, if it’s typically me that does it. I think it means that I’m actually the unhappy person that can’t take anymore. I think the person who walks away first carries more feelings. They’re unhappy enough to do something about it. 

Obviously, neither Rupert nor I chose to walk away. We weren’t expecting to. I’d never fully felt that way, except perhaps the first few years of my marriage. So when Rupert died, it makes sense that I felt abandoned. There was no blame. Perhaps the hardest part was knowing how much he wanted to be alive. But he wasn’t. I was alone. And I felt like I’d always be alone. 

I haven’t been and I’m not. I’ve lost a lot this year, but I’ve never been alone. I have my children around me, my community though that has faded some with time, naturally, and I have my two amazing housemates. 

What has surprised me in all this, is the romantic love in my life. I don’t remember this but I told Rupert’s brother I’d never love again. He told me that while I was in Australia visiting the lover I’d met seven weeks after his death. 

I ended that relationship last weekend. I was single for five days. My new lover is buying me event tickets, and texting me for no reason. It’s so lovely!

I’m recognizing my abandonment issues developed from Rupert’s death. Writing it out I can see I have no need to worry about being alone. I don’t know if I’ll love again the way I did with him, but I do need to let go of the fear of loneliness and abandonment. If it was going to happen, it would have by now. Instead, I have a friend to walk with tonight and another making me dinner, and a hot date to look forward to this weekend. 

February 10, 2017

I’ve been off the antidepressants for about a month. I think the depression is back, but I’m functional. So I’m feeling my feelings and getting out of bed every morning. That’s a combination I haven’t experienced since Rupert died. I think that’s good. I’ve never been depressed before. I’ve told people it’s not in my DNA. I’ve just never felt it. I was surprised when I realized what a difference the Wellbutrin was making in September. Oh shit, I thought, I’ve got depression! By that point, I was able to get up and leave the house on my own. It felt amazing. 

Now I’m living life every day and I need to keep going. My career is on an amazing trajectory and school is going really well. My kids and I are loving, silly, and supportive with each other. I miss the crap out of Haley, but she’s happy where she is and thriving and I need to support that. I have so many amazing friends and love surrounding me. I should be happy. 

Am I happy? I’m not sure I even know how to define that anymore. I think I am happy, yet with this deep internal depression. I wonder if that’s a part of me now, or if time or something or someone wonderful dropping into my life might change that. 

How do you know if you’re happy? What is depression? Am I on the right path feeling the feelings, putting pants on every day, leaving the meds behind?

February 7, 2017

Gah. I went to a couple of day parties today, and a friend asked if I had blogged in a while. I told him I hadn’t, that what I’d written had been used to hurt me, and I was hesitant to go back. This began a long and interesting conversation about money, family, aging, power, control, how family ancestry can create fear, and the narrow window of happiness money brings. He was very sympathetic and kind. 

Then I got in my car and cried. I miss Rupert so much. I haven’t cried in a while. Maybe that has to do with being off my antidepressants for a month. Maybe it’s because life feels like it has gone sideways. I feel strong and focused, but nothing is quite right yet. It’ll all take some time. 

I saw the Katherine Hepburn quote on Instagram earlier and it really resonated. Life is difficult. Dreadful things have happened. In a six month period, I lost my partner, my parents, and my money. The money enabled me to be available for my daughter who lives with me all but every other weekend, focus on my two start ups, attend grad school, and live a comfortable life. With that financial stability gone, I am moving on, and I am being tough with myself and I won’t let myself be defeated. I’m going to not only survive, but thrive. I know life will come back together. It has before and it will again. I have everything I need already. I don’t need to add to my life, I need to work with what is here and expand it. I have a wonderful, honest, loving relationship with both my kids. I have the most amazing group of friends. I have a sweet, supportive friend & lover. My business partner is the best. My relationship with my siblings is getting stronger. I’m working hard to stay in school and get good grades. I have financial aid coming through soon. I have contract work starting this week, and I’m planning to start driving for Lyft again. I have contacts helping me envision my businesses at the next level and to obtain financing to grow. I’m being careful with whom I let into my life and trust, and I feel like I am making excellent choices. 

I know that whatever happens to my heart, it can’t be as bad as Rupert’s death. I feel like I can handle anything that comes my way now; nothing will heart like that.  Wow, I meant to write hurt but I’m leaving the heart typo. Nothing will hurt like that. That life changing event took all the fucks in my bucket and washed them out to sea, never to be seen again. I’m focused on letting other people be themselves in their own world. I’m focused on Absinthia being Absinthia in Absinthia’s world. I listen to my committee, that is, my group of close friends I call on when making decisions. I only care what other people think if it will in some way hurt them. I don’t want to hurt anyone. I hold secrets – mine and others – close and secure. 

Sometimes it all hurts so much, and yet I am moving along, getting on with it, and being tough with myself and making a deadly effort to thrive. 

Thank you, today, for allowing me to cry and be sad. I release those feelings and will work towards my goal to thrive tomorrow. 

November 13, 2016

I slept in a redwood forest.

I ate breakfast at dawn overlooking Lake Tahoe.

I swam in Fly Hot Springs under rainbows fading in and out of the clouds.

I was treated to a pork chop and applesauce dinner at Bruno’s.

I soaked in a hot tub shoulder deep with the supermoon as my only source of light.

I sweat in a sauna.

I did a fuckton of schoolwork.

I moved two pieces of one dead bird off the property so Cohiba would stop rolling in it.

I realized Ludwig and Cohiba are ready to hit the road anytime. This was easy and cost nothing. 

In the labyrinth, I learned that I am not my story. The past does not define me. Today, the future holds no outcomes. 

I am present. 

I am enough. 

As much as life throws us all a bunch of crap more often than we’d like, I STILL believe in magic. 

I am present.