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The Love Bubble

I think I had an epiphany Thursday morning on my way to work.


Now, for awhile I have tried positive thinking, which is a continuous struggle with every thought that runs through my head, usually resulting in a weekend breakdown from all the tension that feels like it has built up within my brain and heart and body. Usually, I just give up and return to my default hopelessness, because it is comfortable like a worn pair of jeans, but uncomfortable in that way that your worn jeans are too worn and have a hole in the butt that gives you a draft and make you feel like you are on display for the world.

You know, like that.

Books and apps just haven’t seem to have been working for me. But this morning I came up with a visualization.

Not like a beach sunset or cool woods kind of visualization.

I am so tired of feeling like everyone is constantly judging me. I worry what my coworkers think, my neighbors, other drivers. I worry if I am hurting their feelings or making them mad or just generally repulsing them with my ugliosity. I wished with all my might that I had a way to block that (perceived) judgement out.

So, I came up with the love bubble.

I know, it sounds like some kind of sex toy.

It is a pulsating lavender/pink transparent bubble I imagine around my body. (If it was not transparent, then I would constantly be bumping into things, more than I already do now.) It has a selective membrane to block out all the things I would normally worry about. If they can’t get into my bubble, then I am not required to think about them! But I didn’t want to be closed off from the world, so I decided that love could reach me, and my love can reach people, animals, things on the outside, if they need it and are receptive. I have only been using this for like two hours as I am writing this, but so far I kind of like it. I have trouble remembering words and mantras. A picture sticks with me longer. I must be a visual person. And after all, a picture is worth a thousand words.

So, here is my crude illustration:

Here I am, inside my bubble!

Here I am, inside my bubble!

I picture my love bubble being similar to Bella’s shield from Breaking Dawn-Part 2, but it is resides about the same distance away from me as my personal space. It is really the same emotional concept my green-haired friend came up with many years ago, except hers involved a hoodie. On days she didn’t feel like talking to people, she would wear a hooded sweatshirt, putting up the hood and wrapping her arms around herself, to protect herself from the outside world, just like a cocoon would.

Just because we grow up and have jobs doesn’t mean we actually want to crawl out of our blanket forts or leave our security blankets at home and interact with other humans.

Go ahead, try the bubble. But you can’t share mine; get your own.

Follow the romantic entanglements of The Riley Sisters in my books:
Be Careful What You Wish ForAVAILABLE NOW!
The Wind Could Blow a BugWHERE IT ALL BEGAN!





You Give Hoodies A Bad Name

Posted on

World English Dictionary
hoodie (ˈhʊdɪ)
— n
1. a hooded sweatshirt
2. a young person who wears a hooded sweatshirt, regarded by some as a potential hooligan

Hoodies have been in the news a lot lately. This post has really nothing to do with any of that.

When I was little, I had a blue zippered sweatshirt jacket I loved. You know the type, with two pockets and a drawstring for the hood. Many pictures exist with me wearing it. After the blue jacket, I believe I owned a red one. Then a grey one. Then a yellow one. For several years, I didn’t have a sweatshirt jacket, as they were referred to around my house. I don’t even think I realized they made them in adult sizes. Plus, at that time, jean jackets were all that was cool to wear.

Then when I was in high school, I found a red sweatshirt jacket adult-sized at my local Meijer store. I bought it and wore it all the time. It was just like the one I had as a kid, with the drawstring hood, zipper, and two pockets. When I was in college, I had no winter coat. I didn’t have the time or money to get one. But mostly, I probably just thought they were bulky and uncool. So I always layered my denim jacket over my red jacket when it was cold. Yeah, I was cool.

On Saturday Night Live, Adam Sandler sang a song called “Red Hooded Sweatshirt”. I totally felt he was singing about MY red hooded sweatshirt. I loved that song, although it never became as popular as say “Lunch Lady Land” or “The Chanukah Song”. The highlight of the SNL performance is the reaction by Adam Sandler to Sir Paul McCartney’s cameo.

I only had that one hooded sweatshirt for many years. After all, you only need one, right? Then I started a new job and met a crazy girl with green hair. (Of course she was crazy, she became friends with me, right?) She had a hooded sweatshirt for every day of the week, and then some. That is the first time I ever heard anyone use the term “hoodie”. I had to admit, it was kind of catchy. And I totally blame the green-haired girl for badly influencing me to increase my hoodie collection exponentially. I should probably also blame my employer at the time for keeping the building so cold that people had to run heaters under their desks to keep warm. And for a casual dress code.

The purchase of my favorite hoodie was the result of bad planning. My mom, soon-to-be-husband, and I went to Put-in-Bay, Ohio for the day. As it was summer, I didn’t take a jacket, completely forgetting that land surrounded by water (a.k.a. islands) are cooler than the mainland. So I found a totally overpriced hoodie in a souvenir shop and bought it. I thought I would wear it that day and never again. But, I have found, that sometimes impulse purchases are the best ones. (Or the worst ones, but I digress…) It is a beautiful sort of dark rose color. It has two snaps at the neck, which thank God, have never triggered my nickel allergy. It is just the right amount of too big for maximum comfort. It has a pouch on it, rather than two individual pockets. Brand new, the inside was super fleecy and warm and fuzzy. My green-haired friend (before she went on Paxil) coined a great term called “cocooning”. It is when you don’t really want to be at work or around anyone and anxiety is eating at you and you just want to hide in a cocoon away from the world. My Put-in-Bay hoodie was perfect for that. Nine years later, it is no longer as fuzzy. And the elastic cuffs on the sleeves started to rot off, so I had to cut them off. But it is still one of my favorites. And I am wearing it right now as I type.

Following Put-in-Bay, one of my favorite hoodies is my black “Spotted Cow” jacket. It was also super fuzzy when I bought it. Not so much anymore. When I wear it, everyone asks me if I work at the Spotted Cow (Uh, no. Duh. Why would they assume that? I just want to stay warm!). And then there was the time I told my friends it would be funny to have a shirt that said “I’m not stalking you.” Because, you know, that is just what someone who is stalking you would say. So I ordered myself a hoodie with that saying on it for my birthday.

I must admit for a while my hoodie addiction was out of control. And I have to control it every day. You never get over hoodie addiction. It is a disease you have to deal with one step at a time. By my estimate, I currently own about 16 hoodies, including one for bedtime. My favorites get worn more than the ones that are not. I must admit, during the summer I miss slipping into a comfy old hoodie. I even had a maternity hoodie when I was pregnant. It was blue. Very similar to the color of my first hoodie I can remember.

I still wear my red hooded sweatshirt, even though it must be around 20 years old now. (Damn, is that right? Time for a new wardrobe.) I know they make me look casual and sloppy and sometimes homeless, but I don’t care. Comfort shall reign supreme in my clothing kingdom. Eat that, What Not To Wear. And if someone shot me just because I was wearing a hoodie, I believe I would die happy:)

I’m not stalking you. is NOW ON FACEBOOK! “Like” that I’m not stalking you and get an update when there is a new post to read. (It is sort of like YOU are stalking ME.)

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