Wreck

Every morning I wake up with a throbbing head. It subsides a tiny bit, but then plateaus all day and into the night, until I wake up again the next day. I’m starting to forget what it feels like not to have a headache 24 hours per day. Since the accident, my subconscious has also been serving me intense anxiety dreams each night. Last night I was overrun by kittens and bunnies. It wasn’t as cute as it sounds. It was stressful and they had claws. The tendon in my left wrist is still injured, so yoga is still not happening the way I’d like it to. I’ve been practicing Yin most days, but I yearn for something more. I feel so immobile and useless. I can’t put any weight on my left hand or it spikes to level 10 pain. My short-term memory is a dreamlike state. I spend my days listening to audiobooks and occasionally writing, but then

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Shaving and anti-feminism

It’s refreshing that we’ve finally entered the age of body hair normalization. From what I’ve read about current social media trends, it’s no longer counterculture to forego the razor. There’s a movement and I like it. As a woman, I should not feel any shame in my personal decision to not shave my body hair. It’s good to see people are coming around to this same practical conclusion. I show my pits in public and my legs have reached peak growth, and overall my choice to ditch the gender norm is starting to grow on me. My husband says it’s cute. The liberation is chocolatey sweet! It feels like every time I wear a tank top and shorts in public, I’m quietly shouting “fuck society!” to nobody in particular. Leg hair is like natural sunscreen, which I also find convenient. Body hair is not about the patriarchy for me. No matter how many gender studies courses I took in college

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Why I hate the farmer’s market

This morning we visited our local farmer’s market, and then quickly remembered why we don’t do that. I think I’m one of those people who likes the idea of farmer’s markets more than the reality of them. I love the idea of buying local. I love the idea of supporting organic farmers. And I especially love the idea of buying fresh, seasonal produce for less than what it costs in the store. But as it turns out, none of these things are remotely true at our farmer’s market. To begin, all the fresh produce costs more than it does in the grocery store, and almost none of it is organic. Sure, the selection is remarkably better, but that hardly matters when a head of romaine lettuce costs $3. That’s absurd. Fuck that farmer. “Certified California Grown” is what all the signs said, as if that means anything at all. California has pesticides and herbicides, too. Just saying. And where else

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Sober hangovers and living with PCS

I woke up with another hangover this morning, which is really disconcerting for someone who doesn’t drink. Symptoms of post-concussion syndrome (PCS) include: headache dizziness vertigo fatigue memory problems trouble concentrating sleeping problems insomnia restlessness irritability apathy depression anxiety personality changes sensitivity to noise and light I am experiencing everything in bold. At least I’m not apathetic and depressed. There is so much in life to look forward to and be grateful for. Like getting over this hump! And greeting the day when my cats will finally love me. The doctors say this will go away with time, but my functional neurologist talks about how symptoms can last years or even a lifetime. That thought terrifies me. I can’t imagine feeling like this forever. I don’t think that will be the case for me, but holy fuck, I can see how people choose to go the medication route and swallow away these symptoms. I feel like I’ve been on a

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Fog

I see a doctor tomorrow to address all 17 symptoms I have stored on a Google Keep list labeled “Symptoms 10/2.” It could all be summed up in 3 words: I feel like shit. I guess that was 4. Until then, I exist in the dark. The light is too much right now. Thought is too much. So are compound sentences. I had an apple and almond butter to stave my borngry (bored + hungry) sweet tooth, but now all I can think about is maybe a second apple. I do not need that second apple. I didn’t even need the first. Damnit. The computer screen is dimmed to the setting before it goes black. Maybe that’s too much, too. Isn’t this fun? I can’t even fucking Netflix because entertainment these days is below me. Yes, I said it. It’s goddamn insulting. That or I don’t take advantage of the Search function, which is also true. But nobody is going

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On Turning 30

Somebody, please bring me a vegan gluten-free German chocolate cupcake! Today is my 30th birthday and last month I found out I am one of those annoying gluten intolerant people. Turns out gluten is the main cause of my chronic itch (it’s a real thing; look it up) and bloat. I cut gluten out of my diet and presto! Problems solved…or so I choose to think. TMI? Too bad. It’s my birthday. And fuck gluten. This entire time? I’ve spent 30 years itchy for nothing. I thought I was just allergic to all the bullshit. Or dust. Or something equally as ubiquitous. Today is also the day I said I’d officially close shop on FlowMats. If you live the San Francisco Bay Area, this is your last call! Actually, since lowering prices to right below cost–a painful but necessary step–, the yoga mats have been selling pretty fast…kind of. As of writing this, I somehow have 367 yoga mats occupying

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66 days and counting

Did you know you can get a concussion without even hitting your head? That’s what my Functional Neurologist Dr. Chiu–author of Brain Save— told me today during my consultation when I learned I most likely have Post-Concussion Syndrome (PCS). My persistent brain fog, headaches, and anxiety are all classic symptoms of PCS. Sometimes when I drive, I suddenly freak out and question whether I am on the right side of the road. It feels like my brain is tripping over itself to remember things or recall words. It kind of feels like being just a little bit sleep deprived, all the time. My head throbs as I type this. I keep describing how I feel as having the world’s longest hangover, coupled with chronic back and neck pain. It’s now been 66 days of this shit, but I guess at least I’m not working at fucking Geico. Thankfully, Dr. Chiu is confident I’ll recover with his plan. I can’t wait

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Mandatory unemployment

It’s like a sick twist of fate that my last day of work as an Auto Damage Adjuster at Geico ended in my own total loss. An ambulance rushed me to the hospital wearing my Auto Damage polo; the irony was not lost on the paramedics or policemen. I still cannot believe I survived, but the shock has subsided. I don’t cry all the time anymore. I still replay the event, but that’s just what happens when you go through something like this. It could have been so much worse. I’d already put in my 2 weeks’ notice in preparation to start my new job as an English teacher at an afterschool program, but the car accident put an abrupt end to my stint in insurance and subsequently derailed my plans to teach. Spending 2 months in pain debilitates a person in unexpected ways. It was not part of my plan to have all this free time. Yet again. It’s

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Some thoughts after almost dying

On Tuesday, July 24, a man fell asleep at the wheel and his 5-ton tow truck hit me at 65 miles per hour while I was parked in my 2-door Toyota. It’s the closest to death I’ve ever come. Look at this picture of my car. Chilling. I’d been waiting for my husband to come to change the flat, something I didn’t trust myself to learn to do over the phone on the side of the freeway. When he finally arrived, I was already in the ambulance. The impact caused my car hit a chain linked fence on the left. The pole dislodged from the earth and impaled the windshield, protruding above my shoulder, inches from my head. On the right, I slammed into a huge wood electrical pole. Glass everywhere. Airbags deployed. Steering wheel bent. Blood. Ears ringing. My brain tried to catch up with reality. It’s hard to describe the total shock. The tow truck driver dragged me out.

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7 hard lessons I learned from 3 years running a not-for-profit private label yoga mat business

***If you are reading this, FlowMats yoga mats are still for sale on this website. Keep reading to find out why that’s about to change.*** This month I’m officially winding down FlowMats, the not-for-profit private label yoga mat company I’ve owned and operated for the last 3 years. I’ve learned a lot over the last 3 years, and now that I have officially decided to close shop and move on, I am ready to share my experience. This article is for anyone interested in private label marketing, social entrepreneurship or starting their own business. Everything I am about to share is based solely on my personal experience, so I urge you to do your own extensive research if you’re considering a private label business. I am not an expert, I don’t have a business degree, and this is not explicit advise. It’s simply my story and what I’ve learned from my experience and perspective. The FlowMats Story (abridged) It was

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