Q417

money SOMTomorrow starts the 4th quarter of 2017. I feel like this year has, for the most part, gotten progressively better. I don’t know if I’ve said it here, but I’ve said it to a few people—I am a problem that you can throw money at.

Now, after a year of struggle, I’ve had some money throw at my problematic self. It’s amazing how much poverty can make you cranky and unhappy.

As my country really starts to rot from the inside out (some more, really), I’m really not a fan of capitalism anymore. But for now, I just need to lifehack it ethically and make it work for me.

Right now, it’s about building up my business, creating partnerships. To throw in a little astrology…

Jupiter, the expansion planet (yeah, I guess it’s about luck and blessings, too, but I’m just going to call it an expander) is about leave my 10th house, which is ruled by Capricorn–the reputation and career house.

Jupiter is in Libra, the sign of partnership. And, we’re in Libra season now. There are other planets that are in Libra (Mercury, the communication planet) or will be (Venus, planet concerned with beauty, arts, love, values; Mars, planet concerned with power, energy, action, and (sexual) desire).  My 10th house is in Libra…

Jupiter will be cruising into the house of friendship and groups, ruled by your best friend, Aquarius. I have Scorpio in that house, so Jupiter will be in Scorpio then. I’m thinking I will find deeper, more meaningful friendships and partnerships. It’s an auspicious time and I’m trying not to think about it too much except to have the structures in place to welcome in this new, generous energy.

Back to Libra things, though. Yesterday, I did this homework for some business coaching/training I’m going to start as a part of this new business partnership I’m going to be a part of, and connection & collaboration kept coming up. I felt like an automaton that could only repeat a few words over and over. At least I know, in part, what I am about. Now as I write this, I realize—that’s who I am, when it comes to my reputation and career: one-on-one.

But back to money. The lack of it caused me so much misery, especially in the past few years. And the focus of money for me has ebbed and flowed. But I’ve had so many issues with it. I’ve written about Venusian problems before…it’s nothing new for me.

But in these last few weeks before I turn 40, I can see the confluence of good coming together, finally—but just as I have felt it would happen for years. I just didn’t think it’d be like this.

I feel like this time will be a busy time for me. I have a lot to learn. I’ll be learning how to be a legit copywriter and copyeditor, which I’m excited to do. I’ll also be learning about how I will operate in this new business partnership. But I have the space to do it, which is great.

It’s amazing when things start to line up like they do. I only have one real steady client of my own and I need the new work. I feel like October will be hectic and I have to just embrace it all. I don’t like being bored but I don’t like being super busy. It’s a tough balance that I will need to maintain for my sanity.

It’s weird when things suddenly get better—or it seems suddenly better. It’s been hard to write this post because it’s mostly good news. It’s been so nice to not worry about money as I have this year.

But one question that I keep thinking about: what’s a soldier, home after the war, supposed to do in peacetime? I’ve been made for, in, and through crisis. So how will I cope when there’s nothing major to stress over?

I guess I’m going to find out.

OK with everything 👌

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No, really! It will be!

 

A Week in Review

A lot has happened last week, but in front of the backdrop of unemployment, they all seem really banal and boring. It’s kinda hazy

I’m still avoiding #NaNoWriMo (National Novel Writing Month). I wrote 22 words for it and somehow think I’ll come up with 50,000 words or more by the 30th. I don’t want to do it because the subject matter is a little too tender post-election. Being broke is distracting me from the joys of writing. I don’t even want to write this blog post, but it’s becoming a Sunday tradition to write. As a Capricorn, it seems like a distraction from the work of trying not to be broke. I really don’t like writing fiction. I tip my hat to anyone who does it well and enjoys it because it’s very hard to create a realistic world, a decent plot, fleshed out characters, and keep all those balls in the air.

I wrote a couple of articles. I applied to a few jobs. I reached out to some recruiters who never got back to me. I had a phone screen/interview where I got defensive about my last salary because I don’t think it’s anyone’s fucking business.

I finally paid the rest of my rent–very grateful. Still dreading the other bills that are languishing, like my phone bill. I hope it stays on this week.

I got groceries from Target and saved over $32! I looked on the Cartwheel app and found that I could have saved a couple of bucks more. Oof.

I applied for SNAP, again. This time, I didn’t feel any shame about it, even when my last employer had to verify the separation. They faxed over the form within the hour, which I really appreciated.

Sidenote: Shame and despair are to be avoided, at all costs. It’s one thing that I learned the hard way last month, as well as this month. Being beat up from my ongoing financial upheaval down here, I really started to take on a broke and beat down, despairing persona. Last month, I was exhausted from the hypergrind, but I was also cowering. Ironically, I really wasn’t taking care of myself, of the business of myself, because I was way too optimistic of how things would work out for me.

Moral of the story: find the middle path and find a healthy way to face your stuff.

I launched my Patreon site for this blog. You should join!

I looked up a friend who has passed on who “lead” (I guess he’s a spirit guide now) me to a blog post written by another friend of his. And this has really messed me up. He deserves a whole separate post. I’ve written about him before–and you can read that if you sign up at Patreon. It’s really intriguing and sad to read another friend’s point of view of a loved one. It was also very freeing and enlightening. I was going to write about him for this post, but it’s still too fresh, too raw, too messy. Grief is so weird and not confined to time.

I caught up on the second season of The Royals. I love that tawdry, cheeky show.

But really, overall, I really felt good last week, despite how my life isn’t going the way I want, as fast as I want. That’s really all one can hope for in life: to have one’s emotions to be separate from circumstances.

The Week Ahead

It’ll be more of the same above–talk to recruiters, apply for jobs, write a couple of articles.

I will try to sell some more clothes. Finally saying goodbye to my Chicago cold weather persona.

We leave the dark depths of Scorpio season and pack our bags and passports for the wide lands of Sagittarius season. And we thank God.

*heavy sigh*

I’m not doing anything for Thanksgiving. Beyond it being really a commemoration of genocide, I don’t have any family, “framily,” or anything like that near me. This year, I will resist self-pity imposed on society that claims I need to be with people on Thursday. I don’t need to do anything except take care of myself and not be an asshole.

But since Halloween, as we slowly dip, minute by minute, into the darkness, after we ended Daylight Savings time, it’s been a slow death march to social obligation and forced connection. Last year, I traveled a lot to see friends. This year, I probably will go to the beach for sunrise. Before that, maybe I will buy some pumpkin pie with French Vanilla Cool Whip. Perhaps, I’ll try the Publix turkey sub (holiday sub?).

Still, I may cry, because fighting loneliness isn’t a fun or fair fight. I may cry because this year has been transformative and has left me broken in more than my bank account. I may cry because I’m still so very tired of living, living like this. I may cry because existential loneliness is a constant companion that I’m still not comfortable with. I may cry because there going to be weeks and weeks of this and Thanksgiving will kick it off. I may cry because even though I had a great week last week, I’m still stuck in this house, with the guy whose coughing sounds close to vomiting, in this redneck neighborhood, in this frustrating, stifling holding pattern.

And if those tears form and fall, they will be welcomed. If the only thing I can be thankful for is crying, then I will be thankful for that. I will be thankful for being able to embrace my suffering.

I will miss the Thanksgiving spread. A lot.

Still, the freaking featured image here says “Everything Is Going to Be OK”–and the caption says, “No, really! It will be!” So, um, gotta address that.

That image comes from a book I bought some time ago. I wish I remembered when or where. The whole book has a lot of crafted images of hope and encouragement. I haven’t opened it in a while. It’s just on my bed, as a reminder.

The caption is how I feel like my own oracle and tarot card readings are affirming and reaffirming. And this is where faith lives–Spirit’s waiting room. Spirit’s womb. Spirit’s cocoon.

(OMG that rhymed.)

And this is where faith is planted, sprouts, grows, and lives–between what I see and what I can’t see. One message I keep getting this month is about a financial windfall, or a job promotion. I laugh when I see these messages, like how Sarah from the Bible laughed when God said she’d bear a son in her very old age. Inconceivable! I look at my bank account balance: $2.34. My five loaves and two fishes.

But I am reminded that life has been so much worse, though.  I’m still housed. I still have my car. I am clear-headed and strong. I’m stubborn as hell.

Still, my laughter is heavily laced with incredulity.

I’m also befuddled. Show me the money, honey? Where is it? These messages of golden opportunities are also coming from other people, people I don’t know. YouTube videos of people giving tarot, oracle, and crystal readings. Readings I have requested from friends.

I don’t need to do anything differently. I just need to keep on, keepin’ on.

I need to hear this, and yet I laugh. When I don’t hear those messages, then I wonder if I’ve been abandoned by the Universe.

Another is that everything will be OK. It’s hard to hear. I feel like I’m being teased still. When has everything been OK? Then I have to ask, what is “everything?” It’s clearly not my bank account, my employment status, my marital status, my home address, the number of local friends I have–all the things that I wish were better, that I work on every day to change.

Even though I’ve written some really sad stuff here, I say this as an observer. One thing a friend mentioned to me while we were talking about Mercury Retrograde (which starts on December 19th, but you may start feeling some of those effects soon) is this great quote from the Dalai Lama:

If a problem can be fixed, there’s no use worrying. If it can’t be fixed, there’s no use worrying. –The Dalai Lama

Maybe, circumstantially, things will get worse before they get better. The darkest before the dawn. Impaled in the back by 10 swords like the 10 of Swords tarot card. Or, at the very least, I won’t get what I want when I want (hell, NEED) it. Maybe I won’t work until the New Year. Maybe my phone will get shut off. I’m scared, also, that I’m going to write this same sort of post for the next few weeks–I hope not! It’s all to say that although I’d welcome a miracle, usually life is a second by second unfolding. That requires patience that I usually don’t have. It is being worked in and through me.

I’m scared, also, that I’m going to write this same sort of post of holding on for dear life for the next few weeks–I hope not! It’s all to say that although I’d welcome a miracle, usually life is a second by second unfolding. That requires patience that I usually don’t have.

I wish I could be on a spiritual Neptunian cloud and just transcend this. I wish I could just automatically trust that things will be OK. But you know how I am about this journey through the mud. It’s one step at a time. I can’t think beyond today, and not in a fun “Oh, I can’t wait for this to be over!” way.

So. It’s probably going to be that I am going to be OK with everything, to be able to accept life as it is. Can I trust that the Universe has my back? For a few seconds at a time, yes. I know that this has been the ultimate lesson in my time down here in Florida, and with my whole life. I am sure that as I was being born, I had to rely on the Universe to bring me into the world safely (long story short: mom passed out due to a funky epidural, so she wasn’t even awake for my birth).

As an observer of my life, I can sit in the cozy knowledge that I’m doing the best I can, even if the circumstances don’t instantly change. I’m learning not to take them personally. I can watch it happen without getting as emotionally involved. Going through this financial crisis a third time, I feel different. This is a different time, a different season of my life. If I hit rock bottom again, it won’t crush me like it did the last two times.

I won’t let it. It’s like I turned a corner, into the light, and

I turned a corner, into the light, and this post seems to crystalize when and how that happened.

Hope isn’t a lighthouse, and I’m miles away from shore. It’s being stranded alone on a dark road and finally seeing headlights a few hundred feet away.

And I’m waving my arms like crazy, hoping that help has finally arrived.

If you want to help me out during this time, you can donate to cash.me  or paypal.me. Thank you in advance! If you’re interested in how I can help you with your writing needs, let’s talk really soon.

I need your help / How can I help you?

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The caption of this picture is “help me,” and who can resist a little kitten like this? Unless you hate cats.

Hi folks,

Happy Halloween and Samhain for those who celebrate!

So, I am asking for your financial help while I look for my next job. September 30th was the last day of my last writing gig. During my time down here in Florida (four years and counting), it’s been pretty unstable. I’ve had six addresses and one post office box  in that time. It’s definitely been, and continues to be, a hero’s journey.

The next week with bills is looking a little rough. If you want to donate to my cause of self-preservation, especially if this blog or my tweets have helped you (or entertained you) in any way, you can click here for my cash.me account or here for PayPal.

And, in the future (hopefully this week), I’ll launch my Patreon so you can have the opportunity to support this blog on a more regular. My dream is to put more thoughtful time into this place because through all those unstable times, I’ve learned some thangs! I’ll probably put up a donate button, too.

Finally, let’s talk about how I can serve you. I’ve been a technical writer, science writer, grant writer and editor, an adjunct English professor, and my MFA is in Creative Writing (nonfiction). I’ve been really blessed to have been a working writer, and I look forward to doing that again! If you have any writing needs–from looking over your resume to cover letter to looking over your web copy–I can help! Another dream of mine is to be self-employed; so maybe working together will be one brick in the foundation of that dream. Oh! And if you have any writing job leads, remote or in Florida, hit me up on my Contact page.

If you can’t donate or don’t need my writing skills, I could use your good vibes, prayers, juju, whatever goodness you can send my way.

Thank you, dear readers. I’ll be back later this week with more talk about mud…and flowers.

Peace,

s.o.m.