on my bookcase

3

A perpetual spell to cope with intrusive thoughts

Thanks to severe OCD and PTSD, I’m often stuck in my own head with a bunch of intrusive and obsessive nonsense. I came up with a perpetual banishing and transmutation spell to help process and deal with unwanted thoughts.

The Banishing Bin functions somewhat like a computer’s recycle bin:

  • write unwanted thought/feeling on a sticky note or piece of small paper
  • draw banishing/transmutation sigil over words
  • fold up paper and throw in banishing bin 
  • burn/rip/trash them during the waning crescent or dark moon

This is a great spell if you’re a spoonie or not open about your craft. It’s fairly easy to perform and store without raising eyebrows (it literally just sits on my bookcase unsuspiciously). I found the mini trashcan at a local discount store for a couple dollars. The cheapest one I can find online can be purchased from Amazon here, but you can use any container you like as a bin. If you don’t have a banishing sigil you’re already working with, feel free to use mine

Heya

I’m gonna give some unsolicited advice that they don’t teach in school (and that’s because they couldn’t find a decent curriculum if it sat on their face).

Get a blank note book. I like the journal ones that vanish into the frey of my bookcases unnoticed.
In this note book keep track of:

1. Every job you’ve held, your start and end dates, bosses name, wage paid, address of business, any new skills you’ve learned while there, etc.. You will always need this list.

2.Every bill. Write the phone number or website of every company you owe money to, your sign in information, your account numbers. It makes paying bills super easy and stress free. I even jotted down my credit card number (in INTP language) on the same page so I don’t have to hunt down my wallet every time. Keep track of your spending. Bills before thrills, always!

3. Anyone who owes you money, and I’m just gonna toss in, buy a receipt book! If you loan out over $100 get paper documentation, the persons signature and a dead line to have it paid back. Only crappy friends out to take advantage are gonna think its “ uncool” and on that note, draft your own room mate lease, lay out the rules, protect yourself. Its not rocket science and I’m pretty sure notes in crayon are still legally binding.

4. A general Will or last wishes, where and to whom you want your crap to go. Kids die everyday, life is fragile. Your parents are not gonna know that you want your silver *bff* bracelet to go to Stacy’s mom (its a song) if you don’t tell someone. Its not creepy to think about, its not going to seal your fate, it will just make things easier if the worst does happen.

5. And this is just a personal thing…I know that I protect my notebook and no one else would ever see it so I don’t mind adding details about relationships. If your mate fucks up it needs to go in the book, if they break your stuff, if they hurt you physically or verbally, write down the red flags. We can be great forgivers sometimes and we let the past slide but when you keep a tally those red flags really pop out on paper and you could save yourself a ton of time, effort, and heartbreak.

I add random quotes and doodles. Just make it your own and keep it safe. Idc if you’re 500 years old, you’ll want or need all these lists for most of your life.

“I deleted your number from my phone month and months ago so that I wouldn’t text you in the late night. I know you sleep well, and fully throughout the night, and you grew sad and distanced yourself each morning you woke to find my frustration, years too late. I unfriended you on Facebook because you liked all the posts I put up, the happy ones, the good ones, the fun ones. I trained my brain to forget your last name. I taught myself not to think of your eyes. Or the shape of your collar bones. I now can proudly say I don’t think of you late at night when I stare at the light coming in my bedroom windows.”

I’m trying to slow time, and stay still enough so that I don’t wreck anything. That I don’t turn any of the good let in my life into something negative. 

I’m writing everything down lately. Because I don’t trust my memory to catch all the good and bad. It’s like a recently mended net, about to test it’s new strength. 

I hate writing K’s and G’s in my handwriting. I like writing L’s and S’s. I bought a spray bottle at the dollar store and filled it up with water and eucalyptus essential oil. I’ve been burning lavender incense and spraying my pillows with the eucalyptus water. I’ve rearranged my bookcase, and listened to an old FM radio. I searched for a station that didn’t have commercials for about 20 mins. My internet had been down some 24 hours at that point and I just needed a little something in my ears.

I’ve been gone 11 days, and now my cats don’t leave me alone. They come, twirling and dancing between my feet as I walk around surveying this apartment I missed. Each tiny and large thing put in a place that feels right, at least for now.  

In college I would repaint my studio apartment’s walls in the middle of the night because I needed a bit of a change. I would rearrange pillows, shelves and furniture because it felt better thinking about how I’d never been kissed. How I’d never known the touch of a trusted lover. Now I do it because it feels good to seek and find solace and comfort here, away from the world outside. 

I’m not sorry that I’ve allowed certain men take root in my memories. Idaho with his grumbling, growling, and breathtaking smile, his declarations. Brown eyes with the way his mouth moved when he talked and his tattoos, and his love of achingly soft music. The midwest gent for his attentive nature, patience, and his stoicism. My southern best friend who made me laugh like no other, with goofy memorable moments of pride and care, his strength. My contractor ex, nationally ranked rugby boyfriend who lived in the Poconos and who made me feel delicate, womanly, but who trusted me with a hammer and power tools. The tall gangly boy who grew into a handsome man, one night to take my hand late at night in his sports car only to whispered beautiful words of praise besides a lake under the moonlight some miles later. 

But that’s because I sometimes forget the bad associated with each. Or the bad I brought to them. 

I’m sitting on the floor, my legs have fallen asleep and I know I should shed my clothes and crawl into my bed. I should make a list of all I want to accomplish tomorrow, and I should, I should, I should, I should. 

I think I’ll soak in the tub, or change my sheets and get into bed and play a song that starts slow and sad, but builds in my chest like road trip views where you get surprised by a great landscape after the same sad thing miles and miles. Just one more hill. Just one more hike, one more mile, until you’re closer. I’m closer.

Everyday, I am thankful for those who have loved me, and who have allowed me to love them, even if it wasn’t enough for either of us in the long run. Because I’m learning to love myself more, and more. Learning to call myself out on my bullshit. Learning that exciting things happen every day, that I can make exciting things happen, worthwhile things.  

That one day, doesn’t matter how soon, all these memories, all this growth will mean a more successful relationship with another extraordinary person. With my extraordinary person. Who will grow with me. That will take me as I am, a person capable of greatness, even if that greatness is just great according to each of us, and the small things I do to affect others positively. 

I just have to breathe in, make several small movements that turn into larger ones, exhale, then do it all over again. 

I ate lasagna for a trip to Fairyland

So I’ve just realised that I never told you about the time my parents conned me into being the perfect daughter by pretending that a group of fairies lived behind my bookcase for an entire year, and they kept up this devious ploy by dedicating themselves to a world-building scheme so intricate that it would rival Tolkien, and writing letters purporting to be from the ‘rose fairies’ and leaving them behind the bookcase

and loads of the notes were basically just fairy-speak for ‘tidy your damn room’

(Text says: Dear Anwen, thank you for your lovely note. We couldn’t write back earlier because Bimbo has been in your room all day and we’re scared of him. We are rose fairies so we love living in such a beautiful pink bedroom - even if it is a little untidy sometimes! Love the fairies xx)

(Text says: Dear Anwen, thank you for the beautiful gold tinsel. We have used it to decorate our dresses. You will be able to see them when we all go to the Daisy Fairies tomorrow night. We will come and pick you up at midnight. Lots of love, the Rose Fairies. PS your room is very untidy at the moment. We will have trouble coming to get you if you don’t tidy it!)

And sometimes they basically said ‘eat your damn greens’, or ‘why did you like lasagna last week and now would rather eat soil?’:

(Text says: Dear Anwen, I love sweet things too. I also like cucumber and lettuce do you? Be good and write soon. Love Isaria)

(Text says: ‘Dear Anwen, I do like spag bog. I also like lasagna and chicken pie do you? I always try to eat my dinner all up. Love Tiffy)

And they constructed this entire world in which there were hundreds of different kinds of fairies, all named after flowers, including the Daisy fairies and the Foxglove fairies, and presumably the Japanese Knotweed fairies. The Rose fairies would come at midnight, when I was asleep, and whisk me away to Fairyland with all of my favourite toys, who would come to life, like some kind of diet Toy Story. Fairyland was ruled by a queen named Aromia, who honestly should lend her name to a brand of air freshener, and all the fairies behind my bookshelf had names, including my ‘personal fairy’, who was a bit like a fairy godmother except totally useless.

Some examples of my parents’ incredible world building dedication:

(Text says: Dear Anwen, we’ve left you the key to the Fairyland palace. Keep it very safe and don’t lose it! Use it when you come to see us next time in Fairyland. You left us two little baby fairies. Be a good girl and tidy your room! Lots of love, the Rose Fairies)

(Text says: Dear Anwen, what nice new furniture you’ve got now. Your bedroom looks very smart. You are a very lucky girl to have such a beautiful room. Our names are: Isaria, your fairy; Maura, Tallia, Aria, Staria, Dixie, Millie, Razia, Maris, Jay, Essa, Meera, Tima, Pico, Saron, Vetie, Tiffy, Miron, Lattie, Lutim. See you soon, love the Rose Fairies)

(Text says: Dear Anwen, we’re about 6-7 of your years old. Fairy years are different. We’re about 160-170 fairy years old. Love the Rose fairies)

But also, they would give me advice on problems that I was having at school, being an 8 year old with such terrible issues as ‘I have two best friends’:

(Text says: Dear Anwen, why can’t you have two best friends? It’s not fair to expect you to choose between them. Perhaps if you tell them that they’ll understand. You should tell them that they’re both your best friends. Love the Rose Fairies)

And this went on until I realised that it was MY MUM’S HANDWRITING, which coincidentally was also the same as Father Christmas’ handwriting and the Tooth Fairy’s handwriting, but that was honestly a step too far for my 8 year old mind, because I couldn’t lose that damn much. Not the Tooth Fairy too. God, the Rose fairies were enough of a sacrifice. I couldn’t bleed myself dry.

My room was never tidier than it was that year and I have never been more embarrassed than when I found all these letters last month and realised what a fucking gullible nerd I was when I was 8. Aromia would be so disappointed.