I Wanna Be a Puppeteer!

103423804_3469749319726519_6503730956010886635_o

Lately I’ve been really into puppets (thank you TikTok), so I bought this adorable Wizard puppet (please pardon the askew glasses) and am looking into taking local classes or workshops in puppetry. It is something I’m really excited about right now. I always loved puppets, but TikTok is really breathing new life into the old artform!

Do you like puppets? Have you picked up any new quarantine hobbies?

I Have a TikTok!

Tik Tok media App Illustration

I’ve had a TikTok account for a while, but never shared it because I only used the account to watch other people’s TikTok videos and hadn’t posted any of my own. However, recently I decided to start making some silly videos just for fun. I’m not the best dancer, so I’ve had to be creative to come up with other ideas for vids lol.

Anyway, my account username is @marandarussell2, so if you are on TikTok, feel free to follow me there and let me know what you think of my silly videos!

How to Respond to Mean Comments

vintage-1823469_1280

How do you respond to “mean” or seemingly insulting comments that you receive on your blog or social media? Sometimes I’m not even sure if a reply is meant to be insulting, so I try to give the person posting it the benefit of the doubt, but sometimes there is no doubt. Here are a few specific comments I remember getting over the years:

About my art:

“Go back to playing with your crayons.”

“How is that even art?”

About my writing/poetry:

“Every human being has something valuable to share. However, not every human being was meant to do so through poetic means.”

“Cliched and unconvincing. Boring.”

About me personally:

Various accusations of being immature/childish, overly sensitive, “stupid”, ugly, unattractive, etc.

The problem is that I never really know how to respond to these kind of comments. Should I ignore them? Delete the comment? Block the person? Write a snappy comeback? Try to reason with them? At different times I’ve tried all these tactics, and I’m still not sure what the best course really is. What has worked best for you?

 

I’m Livestreaming on YouTube

I’ve started livestreaming on my YouTube channel just for something to do and another way to connect with people. I’m doing most of the streams on my personal channel, rather than my toys and books channel. My personal channel has a lot less subs (around 200 compared to over 3,000), so if you are a YouTube watcher, please consider subbing to my channel! Here are a couple recent livestreams if you are interested:

The YouTube playback for the livestreams is a bit blurrier than normal vids, but I’m working on that! You probably want to watch them in the highest quality available to minimize blurriness.

Twittering Tales #127 – Dark Train

Here is my tweet-sized entry for this week’s photo prompt Twittering Tales challenge:

img_0012

The train draws near in a cloud of fog – the headlight shining through the mist just enough to illuminate the faces of those waiting to board.

I tip my hat downwards to hide my own expression. I do not want to see. I do not want to be seen. Human attachments will hinder my plans.

(280 characters)

Micropoetry: 3 Elfchen Poems

child-2443969_960_720

Recently I discovered Elfchen poems, which are 5-line poems that follow this pattern:
Line 1 – 1 word
Line 2 – 2 words
Line 3 – 3 words
Line 4 – 4 words
Line 5 – 1 word (different than the first line word)

It is also common to take the last word of someone else’s Elfchen poem to start off your own new one.

Here are several of my first tries with this poetic genre:

1.
Always
means never
when you live
in an unstable world,
alone.

2.
Stronger
and yet
weakness creeps in
settles on the edge,
waiting.

3.
Unsaid
the words
lie firmly under
your tongue in cheek,
bitter.

I Hate Disappointing People

man-2037255__340

You ever go to a doctor’s appointment and feel like you somehow disappointed them? That’s how I’m feeling today. I went to see my psychiatrist and while he didn’t say anything overly negative or mean, I just left with the feeling that somehow he was a little disappointed in me.

Perhaps I am projecting here, but I kind of feel like he isn’t quite as supportive as my other doctors about my going on SSDI. Not because he doesn’t think I have real problems and medical conditions, but because he seems to think I have a lot of potential and maybe he thinks if I get disability I’m just going to sit around and do nothing the rest of my life.

This may be partly my fault if he has that impression. After all, I don’t normally talk about all the stuff I do enjoy doing while there. I only see him every couple months for a short visit, so I tend to focus on what is going wrong, not what is going right. I don’t talk about all the art I make and sell or the books I write and sell. I don’t talk about my blogging. I don’t talk about all the people I correspond with on social media. I didn’t mention that I was recently made a board member on the International Board of Sensory Accessibility. I didn’t tell him about the art contest I submitted three artworks to this month. I don’t tell him about the online communities for chronic illness, chronic pain, autism, and other conditions that have given me a chance to support others and receive support myself.

I kind of wish I had mentioned some of those things now. Maybe next time.

Rough Week, But Some Good News

zebra-1169259_960_720

This has undoubtedly been a rough week for me so far, but some good things have happened too. Here is a short run-down of the last few days:

Sunday and Monday, one of our pipes froze because of the freakishly cold weather so we had no water until that section thawed out. Luckily, it didn’t cause the pipes to burst or anything like that. My husband thinks he solved the issue by replacing the insulation around the pipe, but I guess we’ll find out the next time we all freeze.

Yesterday I had my appointment with the rheumatologist to get my Ehlers Danlos testing done. I’m officially a zebra! Right now my diagnosis is Hypermobile Ehlers Danlos, although I do plan to try to pursue genetic testing to make sure none of the other EDS genes are playing a part. The doctor also highly suspected I have POTS (postural orthostatic tachycardia syndrome), which would help explain my dizzy spells, vertigo, feeling faint, and maybe even a few episodes of passing out when I was younger. It sucks that there is no cure or really even further treatment other than what I’m already doing, but it is wonderful to have some answers that finally make sense!

Tuesday I made the mistake of posting in a Facebook chronic illness group about my surprise that a zoo we want to visit charges $25 for the use of a wheelchair for a couple hours. Soon I was accused of being entitled, expecting everyone else to pay for my disability, and even being too poor to go to the zoo if I couldn’t afford the extra charge. The attacks got to the point that it actually made me cry because it hurt my feelings so much. I wasn’t even saying that the zoo had no right to charge for use of their equipment, I was just questioning whether the price was a bit high for the time it would be used. Of course, then I heard that some zoos and theme parks charge way more, some even over $100 a day! I can’t help but feel personally that is taking advantage of the disabled. Maybe I’m wrong, but I still feel that way.

Last night all this stress took its toll on me. I had the worse migraine I have had in years. Luckily, I still had some migraine pills from the last time I filled the prescription which was several years ago. They were technically expired, but still did their job. Today I have that slight headachy, hung over feeling I always get after a severe migraine.