Constrained Freedoms

Back when the GOP started to push their ludicrous “Bathroom Bills”, I had to do some research on what really defined a male and female from a genetic level. This led me to information on the World Health Organization website that ran through all the known variations of human sexuality and from there I found one that matched me more than I had ever seen before called Klinefelter’s Syndrome.

After talking to my Endocrinologist, he agreed to let me get tested for this condition and after a few weeks and $1,500 we had our answer. I am 10% XY / 90% XXY, making me a Mosaic Klinefelter’s Syndrome human.

I’m still a male but that extra X chromosome in my cells causes some anomalies that have been mysteriously causing problems with my life over the years. Being that I’m Mosaic though made some of the tell-tale signs hide from view so my doctors never picked up on it at all. Although I have presented this information before, I keep learning new things about it and how it has steered my life that I had to share on an idea that really made me think.

I have the rare form of the most common genetic disorder but you’ve more than likely never heard of Klinefelter’s Syndrome. Now, you have definitely have heard of Down Syndrome and it is in the same list of genetic deviations I found my condition in. The syndromes happen right at the start of conception and there is no cure because the condition is in all of your cells so it would be impossible to fix. (A transmatter buffer array might be able to filter it out but that tech is in another universe.)

Despite the problems that come with having a genetic issue such as mine, I find it interesting to learn about all of the traits that have been found in people that have been observed with this condition. Usually most of them are quite benign but I can see where they could cause a lot of stress, especially if you were trying to have a family of your own because most of the males are infertile.

The only problems with this has been my parent’s reaction. My dad doesn’t understand it enough to really get a conversation going about it and my mother has never once acknowledged that I even have it. This has made it impossible to try and clarify why I had problems growing up and show them how my puzzle fits together. Still, I try to keep the information flowing with everyone else I encounter because I’m curious about it.

What caught my eye recently was the observed behaviors in Klinefelter’s Syndrome people.

  • Quieter (yep)
  • Less assertive or self-confident (a little)
  • More anxious or restless (yep)
  • Less physically active (somewhat)
  • More helpful and eager to please (most definitely)
  • More obedient or more ready to follow directions (very much so)

From these, I realized that what may be obvious to some is that the behaviors that I knew instinctively as “me” are actually conditions of the syndrome and are not really within my control. I see that in these areas, I have no “Free Will” and my biology makes me who I am just as much as my experiences have shaped me to who I am now.

Yet I don’t think I really want to change these things because I know what limits they follow and how much happiness I get from them. Knowing that I am “normal” within my own category makes me more content because now the unknown is known and I can now carve out my future better.

But on the other side of the coin, it makes me wonder how many people out in the world are fighting against issues that are just part of their genetics and cannot be controlled with therapy or medications. How many people have been jailed or institutionalized because they have some undiagnosed genetic variation from the average person. Where could more genetic testing help but, also how much harm could it do to know more of what separates us.

Humans already have a hard time accepting people that look and think differently from them, what would happen if they knew there were more divisions on a genetic level that they could “classify” people and possible segregate? I guess its a path that we as a society have to travel carefully and hope that those with some semblance of scientific understanding can help keep the masses from upending the fabric as it has been. By keeping diversity part of any culture, you allow for a dynamic system that can easily change and adapt.

I’m not worried about getting secluded by “average” people because people cannot “see” what is different about me other than I look much younger than I am and most people covet that more than disparage it. However, I feel for people that deal with those that can’t handle things that are not like themselves. My differences help me see the problems with picking out not what is great in others, but highlight how people look for what is wrong in everyone and maybe that is another genetic trait, a control of their own free will.

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Imagined Solutions

One of the pod casts I listen to is called “Making It” and has Jimmy Diresta, a Maker that I follow online. They always talk about what they are doing, what their subscribers are relaying back, and about how they handle the processes of making. In Episode 152 they brought up an issue that I find myself having to deal with a lot and it isn’t quite burn-out but rather not having the right environment to get things done in.

As with winter, it tends to be a little colder in the northern reaches and if you are trying to be creative or if you need to do something for a project, one tends to try and find excuses to just not do those things. It’s like procrastination but it leans more towards just not feeling comfortable. This is something I deal with a lot as the weather takes me out of my comfort level and I can’t focus on creating or designing. It was good to hear from someone else that they are dealing with it as well.

In order to help free up my mind and tear away anxiety I just have to get completely away from my local environment and that means going for a drive. This weekend was nice enough on Saturday that I got out the map and looked for places that were not too far away but that I had not visited yet. It was a wonderful little trip and I found one of the more interesting towns in the area which I plan to go back and visit again. Although the town is on the state map, it hasn’t been incorporated since 1976 but on top of that, despite there being scant buildings, someone has been keeping the place clean. Also, each lot where a house or business sat has a sign describing the former owners. It was really cool.

So come Sunday I felt a little more refreshed than normal and managed to get not only some cleaning in but I also was able to push past my anxiety to get rid of some things. A lot of it were clothes that I don’t wear at all and they will be going to Good Will. Other things included old computer parts and electronic junk that I cant see myself ever using despite how I wish I could. Whenever I git stuck I had to ask myself, “Why are you keeping this?” and “When will you ever wear / use this?” If I cannot come up with a good answer, off it goes.

Although I am far from having the place as clean as I would like it to be, I feel that I have really accomplished something. I will try to do more during the week but I’m hoping I can clear out a bunch more stuff this next weekend. I just need to listen to other people talk about how they handle these issues and develop the perspective into a path forward.

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Smashing Testicles with Dead Blow Hammers

I get myself so stressed out by things that I am experiencing that I have to let them out in some manner to clear my head. This is something I have brought up more than once and the process I go by doing this is a lot like jumping off a cliff. I say this as such because although I know I need to do this, I really want to do nothing at all and so I fall back into the cycle of knowing I should do it but I don’t really want to commit. Then there is that landing issue once I’ve finally made the leap. I want the experience to last and last but at some point it comes to a stop and I have to go back to the rest of life.

Part of the stress is coming from a strained relationship with a family member and another from a close friend of mine. This with some financial and health issues I am dealing with behind the scenes, my level of composure has not been the best as I would like it to be. Granted, I can handle quite a bit of stress because I can manage it better than some but the whole of it is just not something I wish to be dealing with right now.

So I have been soaking up as much work time as possible just to keep my mind off of it all. The less I have to actually think about the problems in my personal life, the better I can manage the inevitable crisis. It’s one of those things where I have been thinking about faking my birth and seeing if anyone would really notice, although a brand new 43 year old baby boy might bring about some unwanted attention.

Some of this is clearly my fault and some of it isn’t but for the stuff that isn’t, I really have no recourse to fix any of it. My nature and system of handling life and the stress that comes with it does not function in a way that allows me to fix the stuff that is out of my control. Moreover, I’m at a loss on what to do with the stuff that may have been part of my poor decision making because as it stands at this juncture, I have very few people that I am able to bounce the predicaments off of and get helpful results. Because of this, I have started to regress from the society that I have been interacting with online and going back to more of a solitary existence with minimal social interaction.

Part of this change has come out of my reluctance to explain myself anymore. I have had the gut reaction to explain my thoughts and actions because people tend to have no clue what I am talking about. There are people that do not understand my thought processes and therefore need a little more information in order to put the pieces of the puzzle together but in my process, I have already given all of the pieces but now they want me to give them the answer as well because they are unable to put them together in their mind as well as I can. I say, let them struggle with it unless it is going to negatively affect me.

The one thing that lingers with me is that I am still recovering from the loss of my best friend of all time. I spent close to 18 years straight with Angela and there is a lot that was invested in that relationship and because of that, I have many issues that are unresolved. Some of those issues are hidden from me and others are glaring but all of them are a part of me now and it has shaped how I deal with the world.

Outside of my world are those that are perpetuating the ideals that the only way to make the world better is by running it with an iron fist of money and power. The people that have control of the government in at least the superpower countries have clearly made it known that the only way to really keep people safe is to keep them scared. The constant fear mongering about crime, war, and political unrest has just got to stop because it doesn’t help society in the least. Creating mistrust in order to control people only sets us all back and keeps the world from developing and innovating. The news is always so depressing that I’m slowly working through the effort of shutting it all off.

My need to be an information junkie is too hard to deal with when the news is full of the needless garbage that the supposed “leaders” have spewed upon the masses. In the last 500+ years, the same shtick has been used to control people by using fear and misinformation and this latest administration is no different. For or against I can no longer handle all of the fighting because no one has any good solutions and the people that could really do something positive have none of the power that it takes to really fix the system. I’m weaning myself away from it so that when the bright flash of a nuclear weapon appears on the horizon, I can be just a little less stressed about what I was experiencing just beforehand.

At least we have some choices to live our lives a little more openly than in other countries but I say that with the knowledge that the United States was built through the exploitation of many other cultures and religions and despite our grand presence on the planet, we continue to do so to this day. You have the opportunities available to you depending on which side of the boot you are on.

In some ways I guess at this point I have been beaten and I submit. I still won’t conform but I will keep my head down and shut up. Maybe some day I will come back to the world that everyone else lives in and see what it has to offer but for now I’m just going to follow this path and see where it leads me. There is nothing more and I fall blissfully off the cliff into the unknown.

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A Fair Trade

I rail online about the injustices of capitalism and colonialism but I know my voice is meek among the millions that cry out on social media. I know my message is the same as others but the methods by which I present it are narrowly focused into a dead end of communication and so therefore I am only preaching to the wind. This is not to say that nobody is listening but rather that the people that could effect change from my words will never see or hear them in a forum that they participate in.

In this political year I am in the super minority as I have no political representation for the ideals I believe in. I live in a Republican held county, in a Republican held State, with Republican representatives, and a Republican President. There is no way anything I say is going to make anyone consider my ideas about how they can make society run better.

So I whine about my positions to the few friends that will listen and leave the rest of the mess to those that I feel that are not in it for the good of the people but rather the good of their pocket books. I whine despite the fact that the policies and laws that are enacted currently do not negatively affect me in any discernible way. It is the concept by which the actions of the government as a whole which disturbs me so much and how the rules they manipulate impact my future, my friend’s future, and the families that I am part of. Plus the continued ignorance towards the poor and mentally challenged makes me weep inside.

I have thought about writing a letter to not just my local government officials but to all of the members of my State and the Federal government with a single message of how they could improve the country by imparting proven methods of improving the lives of the people they represent. Many times I have tried to articulate how I could provide the insight of one mind into a system that holds so much power over so much but I’m currently not in a position to risk the type of attention that would generate so I sit here behind my digital walls of minimalist impressionism.

At this time I’m not going to go into the various aspects of what I think could be done differently as I don’t want this blog to become a political death match. I just had to get a little bit off of my mind as it has been eating me up. The political polarization is just too much of a drain on my brain and I have much more important issues to deal with.

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Over the last couple years I have learned a bunch of things about my personality, genetics, habits, and traits that have given me new insights on how I need to move forward with my life. Like many, I really just want to curl up in bed with an infinite supply of hot coco but I have to try and look at this realistically.

Most recently I have seen the light on my family relationships and friendship alignments change in such a way that I now see more clearly the problems that I was clinging onto for so long.  Most markedly was when I visited my father’s workplace and saw that he was hanging onto one of the televisions we used to have when I was a small kid. He told me that he couldn’t bear to let it go, a problem that I deal with daily, because of emotional ties to memories surrounding it.  It gave me some resolve to make more of an effort to get rid of things that I have hung onto but provide no actual purpose in my life.

But the whole process has to got in small steps. The more I try to do everything at once, the worse it is for me to push on. The pain of elimination is very real even with minor items but by taking it in smaller chunks, I’m able to make more progress.

For today, I managed to clear out a couple boxes of “things” and put them into either garbage or recycling and didn’t need to resort to drinking at all. Actually the stress of it just makes me want to hide more than anything. One thing that has helped is to have little distractions that are still productive in their own ways. Typing a letter to a friend, working on a blog posting, watching a video, and taking time to breathe are all used to keep me going with the main cleanup task. Just keeping myself a little distracted but still focused at the same time by using my natural way of sorting information.

I know it is going to take me a while to get down to where I want to be but at least now I can see the path towards that goal. Some of it isn’t really an issue with getting rid of items but rather having a space to store them in. The house that I have has limited space and even less shelving. My efforts to improve and remodel the house will lead me towards a tidier place as well. There are other goals in regards to how that construction will go as well. The plans are in place, I just need to stick to executing them.

For today though I’ve made it one step further and as long as I don’t bring in anything more, there is hope for this sliver of my strange existence.

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Rot and Caulk

The house has once again surprised me with the subtle manner in which it was constructed. The back of the house where the bathroom and kitchen are were not part of the original frame and was added sometime later. You can see this mostly when you get up into the attic and see where the roof of one section is over the other and a hole cut to allow access to the insulation. In this case however, it has to do with the continuing process of replacing the windows.

The back window had a storm window overlay on it that was broken from a bird trying to use it as a tunnel. I had taken another one of these storm windows off another part of the house and thought I would just use it’s glass as a replacement. Once I got the two of them together, I could see then that they were not the same. The one on the back of the house is ever so slightly smaller than the windows on the rest of the house and that made me glad that I had not ordered a replacement ahead of time using the other window dimensions.

Eventually the window in the kitchen will get replaced with something smaller to account for the addition of some new cabinetry but in the meantime I came up with a nice workaround. I removed the old storm window completely and replaced it with the one from the other part of the house. The difference was that the old one was within the window frame whereas this new one is on the outside.

Still, it wasn’t just that easy as the sill was completely rotted and that had to be replaced and things needed to be painted and sealed if only for the temporary time that the storm window was going to be in place. Fortunately I has the materials around to make the necessary repair and was able to get it all together despite the rainy weather we are having today. The only major problem was that I had to paint the window and the high humidity prevents the paint from drying as fast as I would have wanted it to.

In the end I got the sill replaced and sealed as well as the storm window and sealed that up as well. Just a couple more windows upstairs to attend to and then on to another project.

It’s good to be back working on the house because this last week or so has been a bit hard on my mentality. Part of that comes from the improper regulation of my medications that help me with my emotions and thinking ability. Also, some of it is just not handling social situations like I envisioned them to be and of course leading me into a conflict I did not want to be in.

Mostly I find that the people I know I don’t really “know” and they in turn don’t really “know” me. My parents don’t even really have a good understand me and I know for sure my mother doesn’t get me at all. Heck, I don’t really even “know” me but I keep learning and discover new and even more disturbing issues that I have to deal with. My latest discovery helps explain why I react, or rather don’t react the same to events that other people react to. Part of the little bit of BPD I have makes me mostly stoic throughout situations that people find greatly exciting or funny. I just don’t react to things and I can see why people get unnerved by that.

So it is better most of the time that I just not be around people as much. Granted, I can carry on a great conversation with people but my dark humor will take me around curves that people don’t want to follow and then we sit for a moment in awkwardness. It is the little issues like this that makes me see that working on projects by myself I can work out issues in my mind and not have to worry about people questioning my methods. It is less stressful and just better for me all around.

So basically I am taking life in small doses in order to get where I need to be. In this case less is more and much like the house, it brings interesting surprises.

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Cat Perms

I keep trying to write something up but I keep erasing it. I have a bunch of things to say but they are all disjointed in my mind. A scattering of thoughts with no real solid narrative.

For those that are annoyed by my constant promotion of Lakota or Native American issues regarding political issues or the pipelines, just note that it isn’t going to stop. My Lakota family is important to me and I have a unique perspective on the history that they have had to endure since the Manifest Destiny and I hate what has been done to them. The people that have taught me a history that wasn’t taught to me in school are usually not surprised that non-natives don’t get this. I will never feel the pain but I support them with their dreams.

Much like I support the beliefs and orientations of friends and people that do not follow the mainstream religious and political leaders. This idea that humans have to follow a certain belief or certain political ideal is strange and unjust to me. People come in many flavors and to try and say that only one style is acceptable is ludicrous. Another invention by people that have been given money and power to control those that they do not understand.

But the cycle cannot be broken because of the time and effort that has been put in place to keep people from stepping out of line. In a different time it would have been easier to remove the elitists from history but now there are too many negative consequences against ones freedoms for making such an, adjustment. It isn’t anything I could do anyway as it goes against my moral principles and I don’t have the drive to be a pain in their sides.

This country needs more education, science, and history lessons given to the population so that people have a greater understanding of their rights, the rights of others, and how to stand up for people instead of dragging them down. We need less push to incorporate religion into school and keep it in the churches or the homes. That separation is what keeps people from alienating each other. School teaches how you should interact with the world and religion teaches you how to interact with your gods. When you die, you are going to need what you learned in your religion more than what you learned in school.

My system of belief is mine and mine alone. It isn’t something that can be taught and it isn’t something that I am going to impose on others. It makes me aware of the other people in the world and their blend of beliefs, the energies of life, and the angles of how things all fit together. It works for me and I have no need for anything else.

There has been a disorganized effort to make repairs to my home and down the road I would like to incorporate some new technology in an effort to disconnect from at least one service. I want to construct my own power storage unit, much like a Tesla Power Wall, to bank electricity and use it in the home. The storage unit won’t be that difficult really as opposed to acquiring and installing the solar array I would need to charge it. And then again I don’t think I would completely disconnect from the power grid just because it makes a good backup but I think with the right components, it could be possible to completely be free of that dependence.

This morning I had one of the windows out and I was watching the whirligig hanging from the porch. For a few moments a hummingbird stopped to check it out. It was hovering around the red portion of the rainbow colors on it and then it flew off to another adventure. I’ve never seen a hummingbird outside of TV or YouTube and it was a different experience. The bird moved like you would expect but the sound of it in the air as its wings beat was not what I had expected. It had a low fluttering noise that changed as the bird went from flying to hovering and then to flying again. It was a an otherworldly experience for me.

What isn’t so profound is that I’ve been neglecting my goals of losing some more weight. I got back to eating a lot of sugar and some carbs once again while I was dealing with the pain before surgery and never really quit it. Even though I haven’t really gained any weight lately I haven’t lost any either. So, back to the protein, fruit, and veggie meal routine and get some more walking time in. Just another 50 pounds or so and I think I will be fine.

This is for me though and not because I’m trying to impress anyone. The life of a permanent bachelor with a small social circle gives me no reason to impress anyone other than myself. Besides, I’m socially awkward so there is no prospect of branching out to another relationship.

Right now I’m binge watching Twin Peaks Season Three in a prelude to the final episodes tonight. I might have to celebrate Labor Day with coffee and cherry pie just to take it all in and reflect upon the crazy summer it has been.

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