a million tiny complaints

just because i am curious, who reads this thing? i have a lot of followers & i barely know who any of them are. & sometimes my friends are like, “yeah, i read your blog, but i didn’t want to say anything because i didn’t want you to think i was internet stalking you.” my blog is public & linked to most of the other stuff i do online. it’s not a secret & it’s not online stalking to read it, especially if you are already my friend.

so, i have been thinking a lot about this one ex of mine lately, just kind of ruminating on what a strange relationship it was & why it panned out the way it did & what was good about it & what was bad about it. not for any particular reason. just because sometimes you think about a certain person from your past a lot for a while & then you forget about them again for five years. or i do, anyway. is that weird?

anyway, a friend got in touch & was like, “i have been thinking a lot lately about this one ex of mine & what a strange relationship it was & why it panned out the way it did & what was good about it & what was bad about it. not for any particular reason. i mean, i’m in a happy relationship with someone else now & we split up a long time ago, etc etc,” & i was about to say, “weird! i’ve been doing the same thing,” but then she said, “then i found out that he died the other day.”

well. that put things in perspective. i have also been thinking things like, “remember a few months after we broke up & he took me out for a really expensive cupcake & shit got kind of weirdly romantic?” this friend was like, “remember a few months after we broke up & he told me how much he loved cocaine?” yeah. makes my cupcake story seem pretty small in comparison.

this is jared’s last week of vacation. he’s been doing a lot more baby care during break, & i am desperately trying to make the most of it. i’m trying to wrap up a couple of writing projects before the new semester starts because i won’t have as much time & energy for that shit once i’m back to all-day solo baby-wrangling again. i finished up my 2008-2013 five-year diary this morning (i had some catching up to do because i only took notes on christmas vacation; i didn’t write entries) & am about 2000 words away from having a rough draft of “ella funt” #2 finished. it’s about being diagnosed with pre-eclampsia, being put on hospital bed rest, ramona’s birth, & the total suckiness of having a baby in the NICU. right now, it feels boring & disjointed to me, but i always feel that way about first drafts. i’ll put it away & not look at it for a week or two & i bet i’ll like it better once i get it out again.

i was telling jared yesterday that a lot of people are going on zine tours these days. it’s a pretty big thing. he was like, “is it like in the 90s when a band would go ‘on tour’ to like five towns less than a day’s drive from where they live, where they’re really just visiting their friends, & act like suddenly they’d gone national?” & i was like, “that is EXACTLY what it’s like. i feel kind of weird about it, because none of them ever come through kansas city, & i can’t imagine myself ever going on tour because…would i bring ramona with me? leave her with you for a week? how would that work if you had to work? it just feels alienating to a person with a baby. another thing i can’t do.” & jared said, “we’re kind of too old to do something like that & try to pretend it’s way cooler than it is anyway.” which was a wicked harsh dis, but it made me laugh. i remember the one time i ever tried to help a zinester set up a “tour date” in lawrence & she was like, “i don’t know when i’ll be there. the 13th? maybe the 19th? maybe the 21st?” & i was like, “um, i need a date so i can secure a space & try to find some other folks to fill out a bill,” & she kept saying, “i don’t know, i don’t know,” even after the “tour” had started, until finally i was like, “you know what? just skip lawrence. this is bullshit.” but i think that was an outlying example of poor planning. (i hope.)

zines make me feel so weird these days. i’m so disconnected from the scene, & it seems like so much of what i hear about (tours, event-hopping, etc) are just not feasible for a person who is the primary caretaker for a baby. over christmas vacation, we left ramona with her grandparents & her aunt & uncle for a weekend, & during that weekend, both jared & i got the stomach flu & couldn’t enjoy our baby-free time at all. when we went to reunite with ramona on sunday, we learned that everyone there had caught the stomach flu as well. her aunt, who is making plans to try to have a baby soon, said it was an eye-opening experience in that it made her think, “what happens if i get sick when i have a baby? maybe my partner is taking care of the baby, but who’s taking care of me?” & i was like, “no one?” i mean. seriously. jared & i have both gotten sick at the same time on occasion since ramona was born, & whichever one of us seemed less sick got up & took care of ramona while the other one rotted in bed. i’m sure there are other people that live near friends or family that can pitch in during times like that, but we were just thankful when one of jared’s colleagues came by for an hour to play with ramona & gave jared a chance to make some chicken broth for us.

okay, enough complaining. i’m really embracing the concept of two thousand bore-teen here.


Published by Ciara

Ciara Xyerra wrote zines for the better part of two decades. She has a brilliant & adorable preschooler named Ramona & sews as much as she possibly can. She lives in Lawrence, Kansas with her boyfriend. She enjoys catching up on "The New Yorker", meatball subs, keeping it cranky, intersectional post-third wave feminism, dinosaurs, & monsters. If you have nothing nice to say, she recommends that you come sit here by her, so you can say not-nice things together.

4 thoughts on “a million tiny complaints

  1. Just wanted to respond to your question — I came across your blog after reading one of your zines and looking you up on the internet to see if the distro you ran was still active. I love your blog and especially appreciate your honesty about loving relationships (partner, baby) that can nonetheless drive one up the wall at times. I feel like often I come across these opposing narratives of “you must be really self sacrificing in your relationship!” or “if you are not getting all of your needs met all the time, exactly as you’d like them to be met in that moment, leave!” which can make me question myself and my partner. Anyway. Just wanted to say hi! Rhiannon

    1. hi! that is an interesting perspective. i’m glad my blog gives you something to think about in that arena. i definitely don’t feel that a healthy relationship requires total self-sacrifice, nor that it is realistic to expect a partner to meet all of your needs at all times. jared drives me absolutely insane sometimes, & i’m sure he’d say the same about me. but it seems to work all right. who knows why? maybe because we share a more realistic picture of what it means to be in a long-term relationship? or at least, we share a picture of what it means to be in our relationship. something to think about.

  2. I have read your blog for a while – at least since 2010. I think I found it through a zine distro if I recall correctly. I liked it because you have thoughtful and truthful things to say and I am also in the “I used to be a punk and now I’m kind of old for that but still sort of into it” category. I commented on a post about learning to drive when you are an adult. I could never get into Babysitter’s Club, but was quite the Sweet Valley High devotee. Thanks for sharing.

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