I am finding myself re-examining my priorities yet again – I’ve been so ill the last few days that my studies have taken a back seat to the need to get through my day without falling into despair, but these practices are a key part of what helps me to stay centered. I have made some dear friends at the Temple, and after a few good hard knocks, I’m coming to understand the concept that true friendship requires hard work – as does any truly worthwhile endeavor. As such, I feel I’d be much better off using my time and energy to cultivate relationships with others, and with the Force, rather than expending it on expensive toys with little practical application in my life, such as lightsaber collecting and/or building.
A real lightsaber is not the lightsaber of fantasy – mistaking it as such is to give an exalted status to a glorified “Glo-Stick”. Furthermore, even within the realms of fictional myth, any “holy blade” is only truly useful insofar as its ability to represent an idea. To many – myself included – the lightsaber has served as a helpful visual cue to represent the Jedi ideal, and the Jedi way. But it ought not be taken as a surrogate for actual Jedi living – while I am certain that sufficiently advanced Jedi may be able to easily separate the two, I myself am finding that clinging to this metaphor for the Jedi life distracts from my ability to actually work toward living those ideals which it has come to represent. Could you imagine everyday Christians walking around with their own personal “Excalibur” and “Holy Grail” strapped to their belts?
And then we come to the questions of attire – “traditional” Jedi dress, or costumes – I do believe that it has a place within Jedi Realism. Perhaps it may be something best associated with clergy? Perhaps not – one could argue either way. Within the fiction such attire was considered humble, but in our real-life Western world, it would most likely be seen as outlandish and attention-grabbing. Perhaps in the modern Western context, the humble “everyman” quality of the plain t-shirt and blue jeans (or skirt) are closest to what could be considered as true Jedi traditional attire. I suppose it depends on one’s culture and point of view. Should we avoid shirts that make a “statement”, or with logos or other things that express our personal individual interests and tastes?
I don’t believe that it need be taken to such an extreme, however it certainly can’t hurt to ponder the question.
Let me just say that not only did I use VERY poor judgement making that last video when I’ve been so ill… I honestly don’t think I used any judgement at all.
Okeday, here’s the deal. I have gastroparesis, which is actually most likely linked to uncontrolled diabetes – high glucose numbers can do damage to the vagus nerve and cause all sorts of headaches, or in this case stomachaches. Why has my diabetes gone untreated for so long? A number of reasons, primarily fear – while I have been in denial for a long time because of the sheer trauma of watching my grandfather die of diabetic complications, in those moments of clarity when I sought out help controlling my numbers, doctors prescribed a medication with scary potential side effects.
If the potential side effects weren’t scary enough, I was also being influenced by my mothers’ fears about the medication, that it would drop my glucose TOO low, also being dangerous. This happened with my grandfather often, however he was also on insulin, and this is only an issue with those who take insulin – getting my mother to accept this has been a major hurdle.
Now however, I’m learning to let go of my fear, and the time to act is now. Completely independent of what is done for my gastroparesis, my diabetes needs to be managed to avoid further havoc on my body, and that means treating it – accepting the good with the bad, which is the only mature thing, as they are inseparable.
So, I thought it was high time that I posted something that wasn’t just an embed of one of my YouTube videos, but right now I’m just going to talk about what I’ve been dealing with day-to-day. I’ve been feeling pretty sick for a while – it seems every year or two I end up going through a long period of digestive misery. No one seems to know what causes it, but I end up with horrible acid reflux and stomach pain for weeks or even months – I’ve already lost seven pounds in the last two weeks because the only thing I’ve been able to handle is egg whites.
At any rate, I saw a GI doc today and he prescribed me some Carafate to coat and protect the lining of my stomach and esophagus. He’s pretty sure I’ve got idiopathic gastroparesis – diagnosis I’m familiar with – as well as gastritis. It’s a particularly special flavor of misery that I suggest one avoid if at all possible. However, even with these things ailing me, I still feel very much at peace right now. I want to wish congratulations to everyone out there who can now marry legally across the U.S.A. It’s been a long time coming, and it’s good to see people in power do what is right every now and then.
Sometimes I find myself wondering if I’ll ever find someone who I can feel that way about – other times I find myself wondering if that’s even something I want. I thought that I was in love a couple of times. The first relationship lasted ten years before I realized I was being used – the second, well it barely even got off the ground. In a way, being asexual gives me the luxury of not have to worry so much about being in a relationship, however I’m asexual, not aromantic, and I do on occasion find myself longing to snuggle up with someone on the sofa and watch anime into the wee hours of the night with.
Is there love out there for a nearly forty year-old transgender romantic asexual Jedi with multiple disabilities and chronic illnesses? Who can say? I suppose I haven’t thought about in quite a while, but the Supreme Court decision has got me thinking about it, and I admit it – I’m terribly lonely. But if my road is to remain a solitary one, at least I shall walk it knowing that none of us are ever truly alone, when we understand that our separateness and distance is illusion. Even still, it sure feels lonely.
May the Force be with you, always.
Please excuse the poor quality of the video – I had to compress it greatly due to poor broadband service.