Friday, October 15, 2010

I'm Fine except for the Earth Shattering Kabooms

I've been sort of hidden for the last few weeks. I'm not sure where to start.

Objectively -
  • Healthy ( mostly)
  • Doing well in School
  • Increased interest in people putting me in jobs
  • Creativity increased ( Which is good. Summer was scary.)

Also objectively:

  • September could have been titled "When Viruses Attack!"
  • I have figured out how to do well in school in the most time honored manner of overachievers by spending 6-8 hours a day on my homework - it's not optional. I need to do this in order to get through the coursework and understand it. It's a side effect of either the symbol processing disorder or the nature of the work. So I've forgotten birthdays, friends have been afraid to call and "bother" me, I'm afraid I'm isolating myself.
  • Although I now have live people calling me about live jobs, there is the most interesting new development where it's not as simple as "they don't want me" or "someone else got the position". It's an odd thing where the positions are still open. They haven't filled them, I'm still in the running. How strange. It's like companies are flirting with hiring but can't commit.
  • Creativity - well the creative writing class this summer was - how shall I put this delicately? "Uninspiring."

OK. That's good - "Uninspiring." We'll stick with that. However, I know my plan to look like a proper purple squirrel requires creative output for the next year as I complete my degree, upon which I will probably never be asked to create creative output in my field ever again. So in order to become familiar with the newest graphics software I decided before I transfer back into my alma mater to take a digital fine arts class. It's a leap. Until Poppetropolis I don't think I ever considered any of my work "fine art". I do have the background knowledge my current degree had a robust fine arts requirement. So here I am.

The fine arts class works better than the writing class - perhaps because I'm not particularly good at art, so I have to strive to get to "acceptable" and the work brings ideas. Because I have to bridge between the idea and my capability. Maybe sometimes you need to work at something where you're mediocre to do the things you do well creatively.

It's a working theory anyway.

Seeing Lisa last week helped a lot. The pic for today is actually my first "Fine Arts" class project. I suppose I shouldn't be shocked that Poppets ended up being a part of it.

Ok - so we covered objectively. Now subjectively.

The Problem:

Tired of not being taken seriously in the workplace because my skillset and job titles are much maligned as "posers" or "empty suits", I am taking a class in a pure coding language. This is not just because I want to know how to do what I generally am managing - but because in the last half-decade I have been flat-out lied to about what work has been done. I have always been able to read code at a logic level (The languages aren't all that different. Regular programmers make the mistake of thinking that scripting languages aren't anything like coding. They are incorrect once you get to the intermediate level of a scripting language. At the advanced level, the only difference is environment and syntax) however, I cannot read a database.

No one will let me take a real database class until I take a programming class. Neither of these things is required for my degree or my level of employment, but I am vulnerable without them. I am tired of vulnerability.

I am terrified of getting a position just to lose it or be trapped. I am not willing to be easily sacrificed again. This skillset is like invisible magic armour or a spirit sword.

However, it's like a fairy tale. If you want to get the magic power - there is a cost.

The Discovery:

I started to write the fairy tale part - exactly like a fairy tale - for the blog. Actually doing it was worse than talking about it head on - so I stopped.

Fairy Tales, they're about the big, dark, scary things. The hidden things, the things too big to tell people outright because the first thing to do is try to separate or minimize them. That's why all the helicopter parents are so scared of them now. They're full of wolves and shadows, and curses and poverty, and powerlessness and power.

You can make them full of princesses and light, but really all that proves is that being a princess is no protection. No one is safe. It doesn't have to be your fault, and things will still try to kill you, trap you, lead you into the dark, hate you. The happily-ever-after isn't joy - it's safety. And it's precarious. You'll know it, because you were a princess who was cursed, kidnapped, murdered, raped, tortured, bartered to an evil man for peace or money. Prince Charming's kingdom might still go to war, there might be famine and plague and what you've survived before gives you lessons to teach, and all they want to see now are the pretty gowns and singing forest animals.

They want to forget that those animals started talking to you to warn you that someone was trying to cut out your heart and eat it to make damn sure you were dead.

And the other "clever children" fairy tales, Red, Hansel and Gretel, and all of the Jacks and Alexis. All those are stories of how to survive poverty and abuse, neglect and discrimination without letting them define you.

No wonder their stories need to be neutered. Do we want to pretend that doesn't happen now?

Maybe we should tell them in the original more often. The fairy tales are tools - like the It Gets Better Project they're doing now. Admit how truly dark it is first, then maybe someone will be able to believe there's light.

The universal part of the fairy tale isn't in the resolution, it's in the suffering that precedes it.

I'll finish writing my own fairy tale- because it was upsetting, because I didn't think that the subject was that dark, and because maybe it's more universal than I think. I don't know.

But I do know that it made me realize that even though I'm being consumed by an impossible task, it's for the original version of happily ever after - not marriage, or wealth, but safety. (Well, maybe some wealth). And knowing Rumplestilskin's name is not going to help me spin common sense into code.

But maybe I can get him to tutor me.

1 comment:

Kelly said...

You know, I DO wonder why fairy tales are being pushed out. Are they? They are? Because I still read them in my house to my son.

I think that my awareness of the scary and dark and struggle in fairy tales makes them almost required reading for life. Somehow.

I understand not wanting to be vulnerable, and taking the courses you want to shield you are a good plan or not. I'm taking a non-required emergent literacy course. It doesn't make sense, why it isn't required, but I know I want it.

I love that picture. How will it be 'presented'? Like, how big...on canvas...framed? Just wondering. It would be nice to see it as you see it, hanging in your world somewhere.

Glad you are around. I knew you were. Lots of Love (or lol as my mom seems to think).