sustained on rejection

am i sustained by
rejection
like a panda
surrounded
by bamboo…did rejection
become my staple
& now
now that the bamboo
is scarce
do i actively seek
rejection
lumbering
past greener pastures
to find my
desolate
patch
of bitter rejection
where i can sit
uncomfortably
& gorge myself
on defeat?

one of the problems with not always being able to illustrate my thoughts as i write them (this one was written 10 days ago & i am just getting to it) is that i do not always remember what sparked my free verse ramblings.

my childhood was a big pot of rejection. out of six kids, i was nobody’s favorite. my younger sister (closest in age to me) was mortified by me & even suggested i do myself in. my peers at school actively avoided me. i was charlie brown on valentine’s day. i eventually had to go to a neighboring town to find a boy strange enough to kiss me.

so…did rejection become a familiar “friend” that i sought out as my adult life began? seeking out the boys who didn’t want me. focusing on them. throwing myself, relentlessly, at them. sending out stories to publishers without first attaining the necessary writing skills. staying on the fringes. watching, but never joining.

do i still seek out rejection? will i ever stop expecting rejection? will i ever believe i am good enough that i will not be rejected? has it become a self-fulfilling prophesy that keeps me exactly where i am?

just some musings as i wait to be rejected by a publisher & an art award…not even entertaining the idea of dating because–look at me–who the fuck would want this?

the other day i read my tarot cards. they told me that i need to learn to like myself. they told me to stop obstructing myself. to stop living in fear of moving forward.
but…i am not sure i know how to do that.
they never tell me how to do it.

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emje’s world

i really don’t understand
like a sick
like a suffering animal
could you just tell me to
stop?
put me out of my misery?
if you want me to
stop
you should know
with the life i’ve had
i only thrive
on rejection
on being ignored
i only try
harder
to be seen
when you look
away
please
just say “stop”
if you want me to
stop
otherwise
i will never
give up
on you.

i often examine my behavior towards seymour and wonder if i am harassing him. if i were a man, and he were a woman, i think it would definitely be considered harassment. i don’t believe in double standards…yet…one of my therapists assured me that it is different for men than it is for women. i mean, a woman might play along and not say stop because she is afraid. she stokes an ego for her own safety.
but why doesn’t seymour just tell me to stop?
i would. i know i would.
it would hurt and i would want to keep reaching out to him–but if i knew for sure he wanted me all the way out of his life, i would respect that.
but he never says it.
granted, he never says anything.
and like i said in my journal page, being ignored is not a deterrent for me. it’s just a signal for me to try harder.
thanks to my fucked-up childhood with parents who ignored me pretty consistently. thanks to always being attracted to people who ignored me in relationships.
thanks to growing up as a sensitive wallflower.
being ignored is just part of life.
i don’t want to be ignored…but being ignored is its own attention. seriously. when you make an effort to ignore someone, you are–in a weird & fucked up way–paying attention to them.
let me stress, fucked up way.

i want to ask him.
i want to know.
but part of me is scared of the answer.

ps. i drew a naked version of this painting “christina’s world” because when i drew a version with clothes on, it looked like i had crawled right out of a japanese horror movie. so i did me naked (again) so that i could maybe try to get the position to look natural. however, i neglected to get my back fat in there right. i tried to be true to my back fat, but i don’t think i quite captured it.

never surrender

it occurred to me today
that if i never
put myself out there
if i never take a chance
i won’t have to be
rejected
criticized
ignored
pushed away
i can live a quiet life
just make art
for me
never
expose
my heart
my self
to another person ready
to break me
never stand up
to be pushed down again
i can keep myself
safe
this thought
felt like relief
for just a moment
& then
i found myself
crying
why does keeping
my heart safe
feel like giving up?

unraveled

i don’t have any love left in me
like watching a cyclone
of bath water
circling the drain
is how it feels inside
me
when i look to see
if i have any love
left.

fuck. i just got another short story rejection. fuck. why does everything have to feel raw & calloused all at the same time?

i need to figure out, as always, how to make money. i am thinking…erotic comics? too bad i am so easily embarrassed by anything sexual. i’m going to go practice drawing penises now…circumcised or no?

fuck.
it would definitely help if a certain someone actually paid child support so i could buy my minions socks & underwear…. but, you know, some people are too special to work & have responsibilities. why grow up when you have me to take up your slack?

my flavor of the day: extra bitter.

fine, i quit.

i know there is absolutely no point to posting this, but i am quitting social media. since no one actually responds to my art…
and since it breaks my heart so terribly & painfully to be ignored…
i have no choice but to quit social media.

i will keep making art.

but all by my lonesome.

inktober 16 & 17

inktober16

so two days ago i posted about feeling invisible and thinking about quitting social media because i get no feedback on my art and it all feels utterly pointless.

so that post got 9 “likes” which might not seem like a lot to those of you that get 9 likes a minute, but for me, that is a lot of likes.
but here’s the thing. i still didn’t get any feedback. so i keep wondering if y’all like the idea of my quitting social media & taking my wonky art to the private sector? if that’s what you like. not my art but my quitting art….
and then i start to cry.

seriously, i am starting to be convinced that i am a social experiment in what happens to a neurotic artist who gets minimal feedback.
do i eat a gun muzzle
or start producing amazing art for my pain?
stay tuned!

anyhoo. here are a couple more journal-style self-portrait-y things.

i haven’t quit yet….

the whole wide world

so yesterday morning
i had a dream that is a reoccurring theme for me
the dream has me
desperately
trying to reconcile with dusty
desperate
to be with him again
so i spent yesterday
pissy
& wondering
does my subconscious really really?
want me to reunite with dusty?
really?
& i guess my subconscious was listening
because this morning
i had the same dream
but with a different ex
desperate
again
to reunite
to be in love
happily ever after
now i know it’s not dusty
my subconscious is messaging me about
but i am still in the dark
is it as simple as my own desperation
to be loved?
to be happily ever after?
or does it go deeper….

i’m not getting art done. the minions are crazy, & i am crazier. i need to get art done. because, well, deadlines…and because it is something that keeps me sane….

but late summer is acting like fall and i have bees to get ready…goats to find a stud for…lambs & turkeys to butcher…winter gardens to plan…chicks being born and deserted by their fickle mama hens…

IMG_5329

i did get around to signing up as a place for travelers to come & help out. i am on helpx and on wwoof. today a couple of girls contacted me about hanging out here in september.
did you know that not only can i feel like an imposter as an artist, but also can i do so as a homesteader?
i’m all like–is my homestead actually a homestead? are they going to be disappointed in my homestead? like take one look and go–you call this a homestead???

aw fuck.

relationships, art, writing, motherhood, and homesteads…it’s all one experiment in rejection….

speaking of, a work of creative non-fiction i submitted to a magazine that was doing a theme that screamed of my story, rejected my story before the email submission had even cooled…and i cried…and then felt like an idiot for crying when there are people losing their homes to fire, flood, and fascism….
but it still hurt.

ps. if anyone is good at dream interpretation & wants to take a crack at my dream, please do so!

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