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The Big Fandom Indexes:
(The newer ones are at the bottom.)
McDragon's Lair. (Marvel fic index)
(Except for: Surprise, a Ric/Shatterstar fic and The Real McCoy, Gen, movieverse, Jamie Maddrox.)
DC fic index
Naruto fic index
Star Trek: Reboot fic index
Leverage fic index
Avengers fic index
Fandoms I only wrote a couple of stories for:
The Curse of the Apple Pie
Gen, 500 words. Written on a prompt.
All archives have both my own and others' stories. Sadly, they've all been closed.
Naruto: Hidden Village.
Jamie Maddrox: Seeing Double
Other stuff I think you should see:
My An Archive Of Our Own page (AO3)
List o' Leverage fic recs
List o' Star Trek: Reboot fic recs
All recs ever
I would like to say I keep all my awesome recs I've found in one place... but I don't. At all. They're scattered throughout those links, rarely duplicated. Organization's not my strong suit.
*edit: It would help if I forward-set the date. >.> *grins*
In an effort to keep up the habit of writing twice a week, though, I finally decided I could do a life catch up, or something of the sort.
I'm going to have to get a new dog soon. Sounds weird, doesn't it? In my dog trainer work (go me, I'm now considered one of the top trainers in the south bay area, and I even have someone helping answer emails and whatnot) I use Cash and Lily two or three times a week. (Given I only train three days a week, this means pretty much always.) But Lily is 12, if you can believe that, and she gets tired quickly. I mean, she's the best dog I could ask for, and she's always willing if I ask her to work, but I can see it wears her out and even sometimes depresses her. She's done an awesome job for ten years now -- she deserves her retirement!
Cash is 8 now, 9 in August, and in the last few months he's slown down dramatically. Just in the last month he's having a hard time jumping back into the car if he's had to do it five or six times already (not uncommon in a single day), and he's nearly stopped playing "dad" to the young dogs I board. Neither dog plays with the boarders for more than a few minutes at a time, unless they LOVE the dog.
They're just... getting older. They're ready to relax and enjoy their retirement, and they certainly deserve it.
But in the meantime, I'm realizing how heavily I've come to rely on them. (Don't try to trouble shoot or fix anything for me; believe me, I've been through ALL the possible permutations of where to go from here. I'm just musing aloud right now.)
Initially, I thought I could borrow client's dogs. I don't want to; the one dog I think I might be able to rely on needs some serious training first. I love him, but he's a dork and needs tweaking. (At one point I considered adopting him, but now he'll be of retirement age in just a few years -- and lordy, I DON'T need four dogs when that happens!) That is my plan until anything else happens, but it's going to be a pain in the ass.
My other thought, and I might circle back to this at some point, is to foster pitties until I find the right one, and then just keep it. (I love pitties, and there are a surplus of them.) Various clients have offered to donate money toward any dogs I foster, so that would be nice. The Martinez animal shelter is only a couple of blocks from my house, and it's a high kill shelter. They might even just let me take dogs from there, knowing I would re-adopt them out. (They might not, but there are plenty of pitty rescues in the area to work with if not.)
But I don't really want to have a dog here constantly that I have to train/rehab. In part because I do board other dogs, and don't want them at further risk (than what they do to themselves), and in part because I don't want Tango at risk, nor do I want him cage-bound because of a dog I'm fostering.
My real hope is centered on a dog I boarded for five days a few weeks back. He's a 13 month pitty with congenital aggression issues (ie, he was born with something funny in his head), but with some structure and management I was quickly able to get him through it. He's in a bad situation right now, inherited by a family member, and the family member isn't willing to give him up. I'm hoping in the next few months, as my training undoubtedly unravels despite my best efforts (and they will be my best; I might want the dog, but ethically my job is to keep him with his owner) because the owner doesn't follow most of my advice. Lily loved him -- cuddled with him on the couch -- Cash quite liked him and played with him, he was good with people and learned quickly once I set some gentle boundaries down, and he didn't have much interest in Tango. I think he'd probably be really good here.
My biggest hope is that in another 2-6 months the owner will realize he can't keep the dog, and I'll get him. Preferably before he backslides enough to bite a person or is nearly impossible to rehabilitate. (Actually, my vet already told me what meds he should be on to help. The owner is refusing -- my vet did see them, and they said no -- but with her help I could get him rehabilitated even if he's gone REALLY downhill, it now occurrs to me.)
So... it's been three weeks. I see him this weekend for training, and will feel out the owner. (The more exhausted he is, the more likely he'll give up the pup sooner rather than later.)
Anyway. The thing is, I don't really want another dog. I think the dog I boarded would fit well, but the thought of a THIRD dog is my house is mentally exhausting. I'm getting things balanced, finally (at least when I'm not PMSy). I have two dogs who are nice and mellow, a parrot I adore, and I'm hoping to buy a horse this summer. A third dog, who will arrive with his or her own needs and requirements, who will upset the balance of my life? UGH.
And at the same time, a third dog might be a lot easier to deal with than boarders who need me to police them or picking up and dropping off a client's dog, which will extend my workday by an hour or more.
Basically, I have options but I only like the least likely one.
In the meantime, on another topic, my house is coming along. I put in a back patio, I've planted some trees and have a lot more in pots ready to be planted. I have a little vegetable garden, and I'm trying to get drought-resistant ground cover to grow in the yard. I have water barrels to collect the rain from the gutters, stepping stones where needed, a grown-up sized swing, and I'm constantly planning the next project. (Take out the wax privit that keeps covering the window, and spread woodchips where I don't want greenery are two of the current ones!) I love my little house. :) It's finally starting to feel like, yes, there's always something to be done, but it's nothing that needs to be done RIGHT FUCKING NOW.
I was also diagnosed with ADD this last winter. Between the ADD meds and the anti-anxiety meds, life makes a lot more sense. Also, it's nice to know that there was something wrong with my brain, as opposed to a lack of willpower that everyone else succeeds at.
In fact, it's really, really a relief to no longer feel like a failure just because I can't keep on task, or forget things constantly, or take three times as long to do something as everyone else does. Although I still get overwhelmed easily, it's not AS easily, and my self esteem has actually gone up dramatically. That feeling of worthlessness and constant failure is gone, replaced in fact by pride that I've done so much with my life with a fairly impressive disability. Now that I have medical help, oh my god, every day life is SO much easier.
And even when my meds wear off, or I haven't taken them yet, and I find myself falling into the ADD spirals, I can think, "This is a lack of the right brain chemicals, honey. Maximum effort (yes, I'm totally quoting Deadpool from now on), take your pill!" Then I also go easy on myself for the twenty minutes it takes it to kick in. I don't feel bad about that, either.
All in all, these days my problems are problems of success, and the every day problems of balance work, life, housework, etc. I'm getting better at it though, and better at not feeling like an utter failure when I don't get it all done. I'm one person, something I seem to realize now, and it's okay. And I also know that even the dog stuff will work out. I just want it to work out faster. ;)
Rating: R for violence, torture, and making out
Genre: M/M, F/M, Gen
Characters: Clint Barton, Natasha Romanov, Steve Rogers, Tony Stark, Pepper Potts, Thor, Jane Foster, Sam Wilson, Bucky Barnes, Bruce Banner
Pairings: All canon pairings, Clint/Sam, Nat/Bucky
Word Count: 74,100
Notes: Canon compliant through Captain America: The Winter Solider, will be non-compliant after Age of Ultron.
Warnings: Torture ahoy! PTSD, too. Crazy withdrawal symptoms. So between all three, I should warn for thoughts of death, self-harm, and other ugly things that people think about in awful situations.
All Steve wants to do is to find Bucky, but SHIELD's downfall has unexpected consequences. Clint coming off his meds, for one. Meds that were finally keeping him balanced after Loki scrambled his brain. With his secrets spread across the Internet, Clint needs a safe house -- and he can only hope that as his mind unravels once more, the house stays safe from him.
Bruce is learning to control the other guy with SHIELD's help, but when SHIELD falls he finds himself isolated in the desert with HYDRA spies. How does one trap the hulk? Surely, that's impossible. Surely.
And perhaps Steve wants to find Bucky, but the Winter Solider, ravaged by memory and confusion, doesn't want to be found. He's too dangerous; he needs to be put down.
It's going to take the skills of all the Avengers to solve these problems, but they've been scattered to the wind. There is no official team. Not yet, anyway.
Enough with the details, already! Read the fic! :D
40mg of Paroxetine Hydrochloride, Once Daily at An Archive of Our Own.
So, I've written books. (If you don't know that by now... SHAME ON YOU.) You can win "A Little Weird" right now (until Sunday Oct 12) just by commeting on Shai's blog, and it's in print and signed! By me! Also, it's awesome. It's one of the happiest things I've ever written. (And when I say "happiest", I mean it made me happy. Please keep in mind I'm rather evil.) If you liked "Queers, Freaks, and Weirdos," then I promise you'll like this. ;)
Fandom: Avengers, Steve/Clint
Word count: 6000
Summary: When Steve finds himself in a sex club (thanks, Tony) he sees a familiar face. Being a good guy, he tries to ignore it. He fails. Much smut ensues.
Note: This is a PWP smutty kinky Dom/sub fic. Because. Mwahahaha.
Disclaimer: I do not own, nor am I making money off of, the Avengers, Tony Stark, Hawkeye, or Captain America. Please don't sue me.
( ForeplayCollapse )
The last time I listened to it, what really struck me was when she talked about hopefulness. It turns out that what creates hopeful people is a learned pattern of thinking. As Brene puts it, "How to Plan B something." Hopeful people have learned that if they struggle with something long enough, they will eventually succeed -- OR, they learn how to make a plan B if they can't succeed.
This brings me to me. One of the first phrases I learned to say was "I can do it myself!" This has basically been my mantra my whole life. This is hilariously funny, because I'm attracted to people who want to do it for me. At first, this is awesome. But the reality is, I want people to do it for me (aka, help) when I ask, when I'm low, when I'm blue, when I just don't wanna. The rest of the time, I can do it myself!
I've been telling Quin, "Stop helping me. It makes me feel like I'm a failure; like you think I can't do it."
A few weeks back, this came to a head. We were trying to open a bottle with a key (because we didn't have a bottle opener). I was watching Quin struggle with it, and believe me I WANTED TO HELP. Don't we all, when we watch someone struggle with something? The desire to take it and fix it for him was so strong I actually had to walk into the little hotel bathroom and make myself busy. I knew that if Quin helped me when I was trying, I would be upset. So I didn't help him.
Then came my turn. I took it, and I was struggling with it to open my own bottle. I was really enjoying the struggle. Struggling, after all, is how we find out what we're capable of. 'Can I do this? Am I this strong? If I can't do it, can I find a Plan B? There must be a way!' It's a flexing of the muscles, both physical and mental. Which is when Quin said, "Here, I'll get it for you." I was disproportionately upset to the offer of help. See, in my mind, I was enjoying flexing my muscles and seeing how strong I was. When Quin offered to help, it was like he was saying, "You're not strong enough. I will do it." I knew, of course, that's not what he meant, but according to the shame research, that is what everyone hears. (Let that sink in a minute: it's not just me. It's the majority of people.)
Several things happened: it yanked the fun right out of it, because I'd just been told (in my mind, however inadvertently) I couldn't do it. I had to stop and figure out how to refuse help. There was doubt in my own mind now, and instead of having something to enjoy, I had something to prove. I couldn't Plan B it, because if I didn't succeed at Plan A, then obviously I couldn't do it, as suggested, and instead of getting the chance to figure out another way, the "logical" course of action would be to let the person who could do it, do it.
I didn't know all this at the time. I just knew my extreme upset. I said the only thing I had figured out: "Quin, I know you're trying to help, but it makes me feel like you think I can't."
Quin got upset -- he'd just been trying to offer help -- and walked away, responding with, "You know, J, sometimes an offer of help is just that. An offer of help."
The thing is, we were both right. I started thinking about it, and thought about it for the next several weeks. In the interim, I listened to Brene Brown again and realized all of the above, plus this other thing: in not being given the chance to succeed or fail, in not being given the chance to struggle through and maybe have to come up with a Plan B, it is ALSO taking away the hopefulness that makes me think I CAN succeed.
More and more, I've been trying to not-help people. To give them the chance to succeed or to Plan B it. It's really, REALLY hard. It's easier to fix something for someone than to watch them struggle. But... "I can do it myself!" rings in my head.
I watch Jake, Quin's son, do the same thing. He gets crankier and crankier the more people help. You can almost see him throw his hands up and say, "Why should I even try?" Yesterday Quin went to fix something, and he snapped at Quin. Quin's eyebrows shot up and he looked at me mouthing, "testy." I had to smother a laugh, because Jake had been struggling with several things all in a row, and Quin kept helping. (It is especially hard not to help when your kids are struggling or, as was going on that day, you're in a hurry and need it done now so you can move onto the next thing.) He gets snappish when that happens and, since I see so much of myself in him (poor kid), I can see it coming. (Quin, having listened to the same Brene Brown stuff I did, is getting much better about letting the kids figure it out. Poor Quin is a helpful person, and struggles to see people struggle. My mom was the same, so I think I'm ultra-sensitive to it.)
On the other hand, just now Quin did the perfect kind of helping. I'm outside writing this, and he came out to check on me and see if I'd like some coffee. "No," I said, "But I'd love some hot chocolate." I have no intention of making it myself (at least not right now), I'm not struggling with it, it's just a desire. Quin made me hot chocolate and brought it out. I feel loved and pampered. Perfect. (Other perfect help is, of course, when I'm struggling and my Plan B is to ask for help. ;))
I've been pondering all this for weeks now. Mulling it over, turning it around, looking at it from a new angle. Now that I've got it all down, maybe I can go back to writing. ;)
My happy pills have kept me sane during all this. I'm tired, but I don't think I'm about to crash. (Check in again Friday, though, after I've worked Weds/Thurs/Fri and I'm still trying to unpack, and you may hear a different story.)
Anyway. Life is progressing, and it's pretty awesome -- despite these minor glitches. ;)
There is a lot going on. So much so that any urge to write is being wiped away, because when I'm not running I kind of just want to sleep.
I had a fabulous visit with my Uncle Mark and Aunt Cathy in GA a couple weeks back. We went shooting at a range (yes, with guns, yes, I'm still anti-gun), riding horses, wandering the GA Aquarium. Had lots and LOTS of talks about everything under the sun. They adore Quin, and he adores them. They said, "You always seemed so masculine. Being a man suits you!" (More on that in a minute.) It was awesome. My uncle isn't doing well cancer-wise, which was rather a surprise mid-week for them and us, since the new treatment was expected to be fabulous. So. Yeah. I love them lots.
Other big thing: Quin is transitioning to more-masculine, complete with testosterone and top surgery. We're switching pronouns to male because, while he says he doesn't quite want to be a MAN, he's more male than female. The gender-neutral pronouns don't work for him, either. So! There's that. It's a big deal. It's a really big deal. Mostly I'm good with it; if I refer to Quin as "him" for too long, I start to feel like I'm talking about someone else, so then I switch back to "her." (Quin's cool with this.) I also out him a lot. (He's cool with that, too.) Of course, right now we kind of have to: everyone I know knows Quin as female, so there's a lot of explaining going on. It's a good thing I only ever identified as lesbian for convenience, instead of explaining my "attracted to queer people" sexuality to everyone. In that way, I haven't changed. It's weird to be perceived as a straight couple, though. I miss the community feeling that being an obviously -- or, sorta noticeably -- lesbian couple brought us. Sometimes I get worried that Quin will get pressured by society into acting more male, and that scares me. I like my butch the way he is. (He seems pretty resilient against this, which makes me happy.) The biggest bonus: no longer feeling worried that we might catch flak for being a gay couple. That's nice. More for Quin than me, which affects me anyway because if he's more relaxed, I get more cuddles and love. ;)
The transition portion has happened VERY suddenly. They say it takes six months or more to grow facial hair; it took Quin one month. We were going to wait six months or a year for surgery, but Quin's medical plan is changing suddenly, and he has to have surgery now to get the top surgeon (who won't be covered with the new plan), which is important. So. Surgery happens in two weeks. o.O I'm playing emotional support, because of course Quin is going through his own grieving process at the loss of his identity, and I'm playing physical support come surgery, in the form of being the driver and nurse, etc.
Also, I'm moving. On the 18th, three days after Quin's surgery. I'm packing up my tiny house and moving into a fabulous house in Martinez. But the timing could be better for all this. >.<
So basically, in the span of 4 weeks, I am:
1. Traveled to GA and back
2. Boarded dogs and did full working hours
3. Did emotional support and doc visits with Quin
4. Played nurse
5. Moved house
And, oh yeah, we're trying to plan some wedding stuff. Not big stuff, but that's on the back of my mind, too. I guess it's no surprise my drive to write is gone, and my energy is low. It's a LOT. I have an awesome support network here, and people are being very helpful, for which I'm really grateful. I'd love to write and go to the gym, but those things keep getting put off. (I was going to do both tomorrow, but then I got word that that wonderful client I love, the one who has cancer that I wrote about a few weeks back, has only a few days left to live, most likely. I told her I'd take her dog to visit the gent who's inheriting her, so that the house isn't new when she moves. Sadly, it's a day trip, and tomorrow is the only day I can do it in the next few days. We're rushing this, because easing Glenna's mind about her dog -- her only family -- is the right thing to do.)
I feel worn out. I was able to take Saturday off and have a "sick day", where I laid on the couch in my PJs all day, watching TV and napping. It was fabulous.
So, life is going well, but it's crazy busy. I keep telling myself, just a few more weeks and then things can get back to a routine... I miss writing. Hopefully in a few more weeks I can start again!