notta not-a-boy page four

i got a fourth page written in record time!
in my defense, the way i do comics does take time.
especially when i am procrastinating…erm…percolating a story in my head.

and in case you are having trouble picturing the notta in me…this is 30 years ago at age 22:

no, you’re emo….

my heart is cold
& smells 
of rotting flesh
the turkey vultures
circle
sensing
my surrender
my heart is cold
& black
with defeat
it feels like a stone
in my chest
pulling me 
down
as i 
fall.

how was your mother’s day? 
why the fuck can’t i not sink into a terrible place on this day of mothers?
let’s not think too hard about it. let’s just have a drink and wait for the day to end.
i know it’s a hallmark holiday. i know it’s petty…but i can’t help but want to set fire to the father of my children and watch the burnt flesh fall off of him when i think about all he had to do was help the kids make me something/buy me something…some token…some little fucking whisper to say i am valued.
but no. impossible. totally impossible. even in this day & age where he likes to pretend he was baptized by dr. phil.
i know that on father’s day i will buy a rosemary plant (because he loves rosemary plants & killed the last one he stole from me) & put a ribbon on it & have the kids make cards & give it to him as if it were their idea….
and i imagine again the warmth that would come off of his flaming body….

i really don’t know if my kids value me or not. i really don’t. and maybe that’s another one of my shortcomings. another one of my flaws. maybe i fucked it all up. i mean, the two oldest are sixteen & fourteen and they can’t even be bothered to bring me something to plant? even after i told them where to go for it?

but i do like to pretend one day they will grow me a pot of marigolds and maybe bake a chocolate cake and say, “hey, thanks for being a good mom. thanks for sacrificing everything for us. we value you.”

ps. my kids did go & get me flowers to plant on the day after mother’s day…of course by then my mental collapse was complete.
my poor children.

of course i was spinning out on mother’s day

sometimes 
you have to dip your toe
back into that
pool of pain
sometimes
you have to take a sip
of your sweet misery
sometimes
you have to
dive in
wallow
swallow
drown yourself
baptize yourself
rise again
& face another day
forgiving 
yourself
but never 
quite
forgetting
who you were then
who you are now
so you never
have to do it
again.

on this seventeenth mother’s day, i obsess about mother’s day number ten. on that day we returned home from a trip to manitowoc after visiting a friend, the dad hurried ahead of me to our apartment. i was unloading the car, herding our four minions, oblivious.
however, once in our apartment, i happened to look out the window to see the dad throwing something into the dumpster. this struck me as odd because the dad never took out the trash. 
so, being in the midst of a fucked up relationship where things were constantly being done behind my back, i went out & looked in the dumpster.
there i found a bouquet of beautiful flowers and a letter from the dad’s crazy stalker girlfriend. but instead of being addressed to him, they were addressed to me. 
would he have thrown them out if they were for him?
the dad had never gotten me flowers (or anything else) for mother’s day because “she’s not my mother.” i was actually touched that his crazy stalker girlfriend had gotten me flowers. beautiful flowers. despite the betrayal involved in her fucking the dad as we tried (again) to be a family.
he could have let me have the goddamned flowers. 
i would have liked any flowers on mother’s day.
but once again my mother’s day was in a dumpster….

gonna buy me a dog…

who held the door open
for him to walk
through
who was supposed to
keep me
safe
who can i blame
when i run towards him
instead of
away?

the dad is bringing my minions back to me tomorrow…with intent to stay & hunt mushrooms. i don’t want him here, but it is hard for me to turn him away.
so begins the inner turmoil that comes with every interaction with him. that weird mix of wanting to see him, being almost excited to see him, but also wanting to scream at him until my head explodes & then bury him in a shallow grave.
so i turned to my dog today and began berating her for not biting my ex. she adores him. it’s embarrassing how much she throws herself at him. so i lectured her until i was in tears.
then i began to wonder who i really was angry at. who taught the dog that my ex is not a threat?
and i wrote this.
it sounded so familiar i looked back to january where i first wrote this thought.
in january i attributed this open door policy for assholes to my inner child who feels the need to rescue others due to her own need to be rescued.
but on second thought, i don’t blame her for this reoccurring theme in my life.
someone should have protected her.
someone should have taught her to protect herself.
my birth mother did not.
now it falls on me to do it. i need to be the fierce beast here. i need growl, to bark at intruders. bare my teeth and threaten their security. i need to protect me from those who would destroy me rather than wanting to be with them.
it is embarrassing that i have to learn that…that it isn’t just instinct.

comic art therapy

i have been brainstorming this comic for a week or more. which mostly means i doodle faces while i binge-watch shows (my kids are at their dad’s.)

it is still very much a work in progress…but i do like to share my process with y’all.
i have decided on five main characters…five reluctant mothers.
fun fact, the working title for this comic was: motherfucking twats & cunts. so i think i did manage at least to make it a little more accessible by changing the name to reluctant mothers.
the characters are based on mythological creatures…but they are everyday mums as well.

as always, if you want to support my art & creations, you are welcome to donate funds towards my struggles. you can find paypal information on my love for sale page as well as my artist for hire page, and a ko-fi donation link is on my me (nutshelled) page.
along with notta not-a-boy, i will be exorcising my motherhood demons along side my gender demons via comic art therapy.

and i have also been playing with the idea of revivifying my old comic weener’s coop to continue exorcising my intentional community demons….

and i am still working on my novel.
oh, and i’m a mom…living in a fixer-upper who needs fixing up…sigh.
stay tuned

enough

i watched him fall down
a full flight of stairs once
& land on his feet
i was totally attracted
to how self-destructive
he was
that tended to be
my favorite part of people
the part i could
recognize

the part i could

understand

that wanting to erase yourself….
i took him home that night

that falling down drunk night
i lured him away
from the other girls
with their naughty reputations
“for his own good” i told myself
i lured him with promises of blowjobs
it was the second time 
& last time
we would have sex
for as much as i loved him
& obsessed over him
for all the years i spent following him
with my heart on my sleeve

it turns out
he wasn’t self-destructive enough

to love me back.

notta not-a-boy page three

okay. another month with only one page to show for it! my tarot cards keep telling me not to waste a gift. is it pretentious of me to assume they are talking about all the awesome comics that i am not getting written?

queen of the imposters

it’s my grandma saying
“you’d be so pretty if only you dressed like a girl”
it’s my parents saying
“writing is a nice hobby, but what will you really do?”
it’s that boyfriend saying
“you might be sexy if you started jogging and lost some weight”
it’s the father of my children saying
“why do i have to work why you do nothing?”
the father of my children
questioning all my decisions while offering no help
the father of my children
insinuating i’m doing it all
wrong….
but they don’t even know
they don’t even know what they have done to me
that they have become a little voice in my head
telling me i’m an imposter
when i wear girl’s clothes & pretend to be pretty
i’m an imposter
when i say i’m a writer
i’m an imposter
when i feel sexy
i’m an imposter
when i try to mother my children….

a friend of mine was talking about how the judging voice in her head was “the white lady.” this made me wonder what the most disruptive voice in my head looked like.
so i meditated & journeyed into myself to confront the one who whispers “imposter” whenever i try to do certain things.
i couldn’t find anyone. no one came forward. i called & called, but no one answered. i assumed they were hiding from me.
but then last night as i lay in bed after being screamed at by my ex-husband who was visiting for our son’s birthday, i realized, my imposter voice was there…they just didn’t realize i was talking to them. they are oblivious to what they are doing to me. they think they have done nothing wrong. they see themselves as completely innocent.
this made me realize i need to start being oblivious to it as well. just drown it out by proclaiming, “i am not an imposter. i am a good mother. a good writer. i am pretty & goddammit, sexy too.”

breaking waves

the ocean of me
is trapped
in a bottle
kept on a dusty
shelf
i am the crashing
waves
the storm soaked sea
i am a siren
who has been
silenced
i long to shatter
the glass
of that bottle
escaping his hold
but
he has made me
afraid
of making a mess
he has taken
my boat rocking nature
& left me
feeling
helpless.

contemplations on why i am unable to break the bind that my ex holds me with. i don’t want to be with him, and i wish for a world where i never had to see him again…. but as the father of my children, i have to try to be tame towards him.
but it’s more than that. i feel like he has somehow silenced me. it’s one of the reasons i left him. i am muted when i am with him. i am not allowed to be mean…to be my feral self. he is able to turn me into someone i am not.
but why do i let him do that to me?
that’s the million dollar question.
if i can tame the chaos of my life to meditate on this, i will.
i truly believe, that if i can break the bind he has on me, i will be a better mother & a more confident person.
it’s been almost twenty years of this. such a big part of my life ensnared. it was better for awhile, when i only had to see him on drop offs & pick ups…but since he has been unemployed, he is insinuating himself into my life more than ever…& i let him? why do i let him?
why am i afraid to tell him “no”? why am i afraid to stand up for myself?
i just want to be free again. why can’t i figure out how?

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