I Want My Yellow Dress!

I am infamous for making pop culture references.  For those of you that don’t get the reference, I’ll break it down for you.  It comes from a scene in the move I’ll Do Anything (written by James L. Brooks, who does The Simpsons now), where the little girl, Jeannie and her estranged father are on an airplane.  Jeannie tells her father that she wants to wear her yellow dress.  He attempts to calmly explain to her that it’s in the luggage that’s under the plane.  Then, Jeannie starts throwing this epic temper tantrum, screaming and crying repeatedly, “I want my yellow dress!”  

Just to cause a bigger scene, Jeannie slaps herself to make it sound like her father did it.

There’s a point, I promise.  Today, my horoscope said this:

Here is your Daily Horoscope for Thursday, October 4

Your inner child is dominant today, so make the most of it and have fun! You should be able to get others energized and find new ways to do almost anything. If you’ve actually got kids, so much the better!

Inner child by Irene Majale

My immediate response?  What inner child?

I don’t feel childlike, in any respect.  I take absolutely no pleasure in children’s games or activities.  I often find it difficult to have a conversation with a child.  Not to say that I am unable to enjoy their company.  I am at a loss for what children like to do.

I have always done pretty adult activities, with the exception of playing with dolls, but even that was pretending to take care of a house, a husband, and a child.  I am drawn to solitary activities.  I write.  I doodle.  I read.  I craft, and have been called grandma as a result.  These have been the constants in my life.

That’s when I realized it.  I am childlike in a different way.  I throw temper tantrums.  I have obsessive wants and abandonment issues.  I have a desperate need for approval.  I fear authority figures, and I often find that I feel helpless.  This is helpless over my own behavior and helpless to fulfill my own wants and needs.  I am rebellious and conflicted.

My inner child is not very healthy.

I have had a retrospect of my childhood recently and came to several conclusions.

  • I grew up too fast.
    It didn’t start out as something I wanted to do.  I started out as something I needed to do.  As a sibling of autism, you are taught that you have to be adult about a lot of situations.  That means, when you have feelings of neglect and resentment, you have to repress them.  It’s the adult thing to do.I had a serious misconception.  At the time of adolescence, I made the decision to take on the freedom of an adult, since I had carried the burden of responsibility of an adult in childhood.  Perhaps it was due to bodily changes, or just coming-of-age.  Either way, I made some irresponsible choices to participate in grown-up activities in adult situations way too soon.
  • I was an overachiever.
    Achievement leaves little room for childlike activities.  It requires self-discipline the likes of which no ordinary kid could offer to themselves.  I practiced my music alone.  I became second chair, next to a girl who had lessons.  I became a second part section leader at the age of eleven.  I joined library club, just to put books away and spend my free time reading classic literature far above my head.I didn’t play sports.  I loathed gym and feared recess.  Most of the time, I would sit on the bleachers alone, staring into the vastness of the parking lot.  And there wasn’t a soul who was interested in having me join their game.
  • I was a sensitive child who needed to grow thicker skin.
    My preschool teacher was the first person to bring this to my mother’s attention.  What little girl doesn’t cry at the age of four?  What parent seems to think that crying is unhealthy?  Well, it was the 80’s after all.By the time I was in second grade, I started to develop panic attacks.  They landed me in the nurses office frequently, and I was deemed a hypochondriac at that time.

    Fourth grade was when I had the toughest teacher of them all.  I read her comment on the report card before my mother even had the chance.  “Does not take constructive criticism.”  After I work my little rear off, she has the gall to say that?!  Yes, I was discouraged that I wasn’t perfect at everything.  Maybe a little reassurance, you know?

My inner child seems to still be pretty angry about all of this stuff.

I get it, now.  I have spent a great deal of time and energy into satisfying the immediate demands of my inner child.  Or, on the opposite end, I have been denying my inner child completely.  I have really done nothing to nurture and attend to this internal being.

How do I go about doing that?

Astrology suggests looking at my Moon sign to determine the kind of soul food that I need.  However, it seems that, while astrology may have a clue as to where my interests lie, psychology appears to have a better grasp on the nature of the inner child.

Livestrong.com has a list of suggestions.  Here are the ones I like the best:

What nurturing messages can you give your “inner child”?
You can tell your “inner child” that it is OK to:
* Have the freedom to make choices for itself.
* Be “selfish” and do the things you want to do.
* Take the time to do the things you want to do.
* Associate only with the people you want to associate with.
* Accept some people and to reject others.
* Give and accept love from others.
* Allow someone else to care for you.
* Enjoy the fruits of your labor with no guilt feelings.
* Take time to play and have fun each day.
* Not to be so serious, intense and inflexible about life.
* Set limits on how you are going to relate to others.
* Not always “serve” others.
* Accept others “serving” you.
* Be in charge of your life and not let others dictate to you.
* Be honest with others about your thoughts and feelings.
* Take risks and to suffer the positive or negative consequences of such risks.
* Make mistakes, laugh at them and carry on.
* Let your imagination and creativity be set free and to soar with the eagles.
* Cry, hurt and to be in pain as long as you share your feelings; do not repress or suppress them.
* Be angry, to express your anger and to bring your anger to some resolution.
* Make decisions for yourself.
* Be a problem solver and come up with solutions with which everyone may not agree.
* Feel happiness, joy, excitement, pleasure and excitement about living.
* Feel down, blue, sad, anxious, upset and worried, as long as you share your feelings.
* Love and be loved by someone whom you cherish.
* Be your “inner child” and to let it grow up, accept love, share feelings and enjoy pleasure and play.

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My Super Powers

Bipolar disorder has a way of distorting perceptions that color the world in the mood of the moment.  It might be an inconvenient truth during most times, but in mania, I can say that I sometimes find it truly fun and interesting.

 

Mania is like a teen girl that preys on my unstable sense of self and often convinces me that those half-truths are a strong reality.  In dysphoric mania or, as some clinicians think, a mixed state, those whispers can come in the form of intrusive thoughts.  However, in hypomania and euphoric mania, they come in sweet whispers of steroids for self-esteem.  They term that “delusions of grandeur”.

 

I feel like that might be an overkill kind of term for what I typically experience in milder manias, or even hypomanias.  Typically, I have enough litigation between my id and ego to come to some kind of realistic compromise between the two competing truths in my mind – “I am not particularly special,” and “I am completely unique.”  That’s just a stock version of the battle that rages in there sometimes.

 

I am led to believe that everyone has a special ability, kind of like a super power but without the super part.  However, that might just be the fluttering eye lashes and sincerity in the voice of that lovely young miss who smiles sweetly at me.   But, seriously, everyone has a unique ability that only a small population might possess.

 

Perhaps a person was born with it.  For me, the sixth sense is my unnatural empathy.  I can literally feel emotional vibrations from others.  I have termed this ability the state of being an “Empath”, after the Star Trek race of half-Betazoids.  Of course, once I Googled that term, it seems I’m not the only one that came up with that, and it’s unlikely that they derived it from the same origin.  Others might be able to accurately predict weather with the (super) power to sense slight variations in temperature, barometric pressure, and humidity.  I find that I can only smell rain and feel the magnetic field shift ever so slightly.  Some might even be clairvoyant or even psychic.  That is one (super) power I can honestly say that I have never thought to possess.

 

Others might be able to develop it.  Personally, I developed the skill to see lies.  Thanks to the show Lie to Me, based on the work of Paul Ekman, I practiced the art of recognizing and reading microexpressions.  In addition, I studied Psychology in college with an emphasis in Applied Behavioral Analysis.  In essence, I’m a behaviorist.  All of those combined allow me to see right through a person.  An ill delivered phrase, combined with a microexpression opposing their forced expression, and the nature state of being an Empath, deliver all I need to know about a person.  Unfortunately, it’s most effective when I’m having face time.  That is why I have a certain preference.

In addition, I developed the skill of deciphering a natal astrology chart.  All I need to know are the positions of the planets when a person was born, and I can translate that into a full personality workup.  I have the ability to tell people things about themselves that they were unaware even existed until they do a bit of introspection.  I’ll do my own short version workup for a bit of proof.

Ascendant:  Sagittarius

I like to appear put together and in control.  I may have ego issues and I take criticism very personally.  I am likely to be passive-aggressive with acquaintances and have a tendency to shoot verbal arrows in the attempt to start an argument.

Midheaven:  Virgo

I have a need to look unassuming.  I want to appear practical, methodical, and quiet.  To acquaintances, I seem shy and set about my business.  I want to keep things clean and orderly.  I am the least likely to initiate confrontation, and I attempt to dodge blame whenever possible.  Owning up to my superficial mistakes is difficult.

Moon:  Libra

Life has to be a beautiful experience.  I am prone to surrounding myself with beautiful objects and people.  Drama-prone, difficult, close-minded people are not welcome, because they do not promote harmonious friendships.  However, there is a strong need for partnerships, romantic and otherwise.  I have always had a lifetime goal of finding “The One”.

I am often free with my emotions and I feel strongly.  However, I am always concerned with a balance of emotions and equality in relationships.  Flaws present easily, and I am always prone to attempt to “fix” things, and especially people.

Sun:  Capricorn

It is in my nature to be overly ambitious and practical.  However, I am not too practical to the point of extreme sacrifice.  I have a taste for finer things, but am less likely to indulge, though it will likely happen.  I like worldly goods, and might have a tendency toward hoarding.

I feel as if I need to be useful and purposeful in my life.  My life has to make a difference in others, and tangible results are the only way for me to feel successful.

I have trust issues, especially after betrayals.  I have difficulty letting things go.

Mercury:  Capricorn

All communication is practical and purposeful.  Information that does not serve a purpose cannot be compartmentalized or connected to anything useful is often discarded without thinking.  I am always eager to go after independent study, and get defensive when someone attempts to teach me something in a domain I was sure that I was highly skilled in.

Venus:  Pisces

I have a warm heart and a soft spot for people in need, making me naturally good with children and animals.  I am naturally sensitive and am high maintenance in a relationship.  I can be a bit selfish in my friendships and romance.  I often trust my heart in relationships rather than being practical about it.  I have a need for dreamy moments and have a tendency toward idealizing people and situations.

Mars:  Pisces

I don’t like to fight.  I avoid confrontation.  If confrontation happens, though, I can have a bad temper.  Sometimes, it is irrational anger and misdirected.  I am prone to feelings of shame and guilt.  I have difficulty regulating emotions and maintaining relationships as a result.  I want everything to be perfect, simple, and nice.  I want all of my relationships to have a dream-like, supernaturally close kind of quality to them.

I have a tendency toward manipulation, though I am not apt to actually want to hurt anyone.  However, I have a strong sense of want, and can be kind of selfish.  I am never really sure what I want, and I shift constantly between extremes.

Jupiter:  Capricorn

I have to work for good fortune.  It doesn’t just come to me.  However, with time and effort, I can usually see good results.  I have high integrity.  I am ethical and professional.  In addition, I am urged to be responsible and organized.  I am at my happiest when my world is neat and orderly and trouble free.

However, I am easily annoyed by little misfortunes and mishaps that could have been avoided.

Saturn:  Scorpio

I am generally secretive, and not always purposefully.  I am not always straightforward, and I feel a need to have a rich internal life that I can reside in at will.  I do not lend my trust easily, and I do not forgive easily when someone has burned me.

I have a need to control my life and situations around me.  When this is not possible, I am prone to retreating into that internal world where I rule.  Unfortunately, that means retreating from the external world.

I do not like failure, and I will run from it every single time.  That is usually how many of my projects go unfinished, because I was overly ambitious and ran at the hint of failure.

 

I will be happy to do anyone’s full natal chart if they are interested.  Just email me at lulu.em.stark@gmail.com.

 

So, I’ve divulged all of my (super) powers.  They might be delusions, but they are mine.  What are your powers?