the bat card…rebirth

i have woven
together
love & rejection
my earliest experiences with love
being rejection

people become important to me
once they have
rejected me
i focus on this rejection
instead of
acceptance

i look for my worth
in the eyes
of people…of men
who reject me.

i feel anger that i am not
valued
i let my anger become
who i am.

i am not my anger.
i am not that reflection
i see
in the eyes
of people who cannot
love
me.

follow me

i struggled to lighten some of the darker bits with white ink.
struggled.
but i think it worked out…ish.

just my second ink in six days. february is off to a very unimpressive start. my horoscope says that my career will boom this week…for my sun sign & my rising sign. so perhaps the rest of this month will be more impressive.

and i am working on an illustration project. something i need to start spending more time with. i meant to work on it more than i did during my minion-free time…however, i spent too much of that time thinking about getting laid. and trying to figure out how to get laid. and then realizing my best option for a little sex was not an option at all because i really did not want to go there after all.

then i start wondering. the world is falling apart…should i really be this concerned about love & being loved & finding someone to love?
but love is all the time.
i mean…sarah connor managed to fall in love while being chased by a kill-happy terminator.
people fall in love during war & famine & plague.

right?

so looking for love during this god-awful time isn’t completely unheard of…right?

i’ve got two ex-husbands willing to come to my rescue. of course, their idea of rescue is mostly self-serving and has very little to do with me. i have to assure the two of them that i do not need rescuing…while i secretly hope that some strapping redhead will come to my rescue.
i have some weird viking/lumberjack fetish going on.
i really don’t know what that is about.
this might all be some perimenopausal hormone explosion.

or maybe after a lifetime of crappy relationships
and always having to rescue myself
i’m finally willing to be swept off my feet.

and then i just want to make fun of myself for being a silly romantic.

swim

i had to quit shopping for people online. i mean, i felt i was really clear on my profile, but i shouldn’t be surprised to realize that most men don’t actually read the profile. there is a “message me if” section where i wrote:

honestly, i am just here to find someone to talk to. i don’t want anyone who is going to judge me or who just wants to get laid or who is going to tell me how to live my life. i just want someone to laugh with. to share little parts of my day with.

if i ever do this again–i’m going to add sometime like, “start you message with ‘hello sunshine!’ to show you actually read my profile.”

bleah.

i had a very nice gentleman go into way way way too much detail about what he wants from a sexual partner.
i had another man emailing me his intentions and being very enthusiastic about my being the one…then i got a facebook message from one of the other women he has been wooing. we compared notes and decided that he was not being at all honest. she went on to find yet another woman he was actively pursuing.

i had to cancel my membership.

but i realize something. i am special. you know, in a snowflake kind of way. someone would be lucky to have me in their life. i am not a complete fuck up. i have made a lot of mistakes and done a lot of regrettable things. but i am true to who i am.

and that is good.

someday i might even meet the person who appreciates & celebrates that.

but probably not on an online dating site.

so! new year; new drawing. i really like this one. i have been using sketch paper. it’s not always the best, but i kind of like the way the ink changes the paper. so i will keep playing around with it. however, i forget about the little perforated line and my inkings keep going right on over it. so that is something to think about.

happy new year!

swim1

split-apart

it was new year’s eve 1992. i was 22 and running away from my life, en route to washington dc from iowa city, ia. i went to my parent’s house in illinois for christmas. my younger–very straight & conservative–sister suggested we go out to a bar in the nearby college town of normal. i think she was trying to impress us that she could be cool. it was a grunge bar (before grunge was really even a thing) with a purple mohawked & tattooed bartender and all the hip college kids as clientele.

i woke up the morning before we went there with one thought in my head, “today you are going to meet the man you are going to marry.”

it was a strong thought. this had happened to me before–and come true. the strong waking premonition. so i did not doubt it.

at the bar, the gallery, i was amazed at the number of hot guys. i had bad luck dating in iowa city, everyone thought i was a lesbian–and i had plenty of those opportunities…but very few straight ones. and all terrible in their own ways. so i felt i had stumbled upon an oasis in my romantic desert.

of the sea of hot guys, i was informed by one of the bartenders that her good friend thought i was cute. he was–sadly–the least attractive of the boys there…not at all my type. large & hairy. but due to my premonition, i thought, what the hell. let’s see what happens. so i started dating him. started having feelings for him. scrapped my plans to move to dc & (with the help of the tattooed bartender) found a job & a place to live in normal.

then the mountain man dumped me.

in retrospect, i think i was just the person he needed to feel confident enough to go after the woman he really wanted to be with. and, his having me doting on him, gave him that attractiveness credit with the would-be girlfriend. all of a sudden, because he was my boyfriend, he was a guy worth looking twice at.  i was a tool. they are happily married now. i never got a thank you card for that…oh well.

i spiraled as someone with low self-esteem is bound to do once rejected. i dated & flirted & messed around…a lot. seriously, so many cute guys! there were parties where all these hot people would sit around & play “spin the bottle.” i had so much fun that i can never tell my kids about.

anyhoo!

there was this one bouncer at the gallery. okay. stop. erase your mental image of “bouncer.” at this bar, the biggest & most threatening bouncer employed there was a woman. none of the bouncers could have probably bounced. mostly they just checked id. and in the case of the 6 foot woman bouncer–deep throat kissed everyone who came through the door. ah…the early nineties….

so there was a bouncer who when i first saw him he was cleaning his brand new belly button piercing behind the bar. (it later got infected and was impressively pus-filled enough that the piecing was abandoned.) i had also just gotten my belly button pierced–so i was like, “hey, me too.”

here’s the thing though. this boy was so incredibly good-looking that my mind literally did not entertain thoughts of him for even a second. he was quickly filed in the “out of my league” category. also. he was in one of those epic romances that everyone references when they are talking about perfect couples. it was always him “&amy.” they were a fixed point in time.

and i was a paradox.

but we became fast friends. fun friends. he was great to goof off with. funny. so funny. i can remember my face hurting from laughing when i was with him. and so laid back. i would find him at parties (there was always a party. seriously. weekend parties. after-hour parties. so many parties!) and we would have long conversations about everything & nothing.

then one day i was at his going away party. he was moving to montana. and he was gone. my life went on. i continued living a strange life full of drama & dating.

then one day he was back.

i was walking down the street, and there he was. he told me that he just got back into town, and from that point we were inseparable.
he later told me that he moved to montana to get away from his girlfriend–it didn’t work.
he also told me
that he came back
because he had a dream about me.
i continued to resist it as a romance…especially since he seemed unable to break up with his girlfriend. but we were the best of friends. we plotted ways to make money. we went on crazy road trips. we even became roommates.

i would lay in his arms every night…you know, as his roommate, and feel like i was home. he made everything okay.

we eventually did date.
and break up.
and get back together.
and get engaged (with tattoos!)
and move to an all girl college together.
and move to austin, texas together.

and…

i fucked it up. as hard and terribly as i could. i mean, it’s like i put effort  into fucking it up. i destroyed our relationship. i destroyed everything.

and i have spent the past 20 years trying to forget him and get past him (when i’m not missing him & imagining what would have been).

but i can’t forget him. i remember him better than i remember what i ate yesterday. he is etched in my brain…my heart…scattered across my soul.
i no longer believe i am able to forget him. or that i am meant to forget him.
back then & still today, i believe he is my split-apart.
the other half of me.

yellow!

i don’t like all of the pictures i do. i put them up whether i like them or not. but i don’t like them all. i am always surprised when someone loves one of the pictures that i hate.

img_3023

i guess it just goes to show how different we all really are.

img_3026

then i am equally surprised when a drawing i love & cherish gets no reaction at all. then i start digging around for approval…and am devastated if i cannot drum up the enthusiasm from others that i feel for my art.

img_3028

it feels like a rejection of me.

yellow4

so how come when someone embraces a picture i make that i deem ugly & unworthy, that doesn’t somehow validate the part of me that feels unlovable?

it’s a puzzle.

in case you are wondering. this is one of the ones that i love. so i will wait
quietly
impatiently
urgently
desperately
for y’all to sing it’s praises….

so i can feel like i matter.

(no pressure)