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#DailyKat speaks about my father. About me. About you?

click the photo and start the livestream at 16'20"

click the photo and start the live stream at 16’20″ (don’t forget to come back with < )

At breakfast, I was listening to new uploads from Katrina Ruth on YouTube. I curate a playlist THE KATRINA RUTH FREE TRAINING LIST ON YOUTUBE and to keep it under a hundred videos, I “need to” (as if that is not sheer pleasure in itself) select which new Katrina Ruth videos will go on it.
But this morning I not just heard a training that will make it to the list; it also blew me away.
And it will therefor stay on the list until the end of time.
Now technically, the message of the live stream is identical to a blog she wrote the night before the live stream;
 I’M SENSITIVE AND ANXIOUS, EASILY AGITATED, AND I KIND OF REALLY HATE PEOPLE, A LOT OF THE TIME … She also refers to this blog in her live stream. Two weeks ago I read and used that blog for a project where I select one quote a day, #DailyKat.
But this is the live stream she created the next day, while she was playing hooky on a ClickFunnel event she had been very verbal about (in a negative way) before attending. She only went to get her team up to speed or introduced on how to use funnels.
Not because she had chosen it for herself.
So here she was, sitting on a sunny rock at a Disney Resort where the event was, live streaming at exactly the same moment everybody would walk through the park on their break. So they could not talk to her.
That whole setting was the message right there. It told exactly what kind of person she is. And that I am.
And that to this day, I have always assumed other people are too! But that they either do a better job hiding it.
OR they are actually more evolved species than me. Less spoiled, more mature, more APPRECIATIVE of other people’s knowledge, and presence and not so (Katrina Ruth’s capitals coming up again) GODDAMN FUCKING PICKY ABOUT WHO THEY HANG OUT WITH AND COUNTING EVERY TORTUROUS MINUTE OF IT.
I want to tell you a story about my late father.
Whose anti-social character traits have started to speak to me in a number of ways. I ve come to realize that I have them too. It’s just that I still feel uneasy owning them the way he did. As if being female means I should be social, and pleasing. Which my father was absolutely incapable of, unless he felt like it. Or unless he thought the stakes were high. Which usually had to do with career-like situations.
But whenever there was company at our house which were not my father’s friends, relatives, nor his business contacts? My father would read the newspaper. If he had for some unknown reason agreed to “attend” a birthday on my mother’s side of the family? Where attend means to physically be in the same room, f.e. because they had another appointment in that same area later that day. He would read a newspaper until that one aunt would come in (also a notorious no-shower) who everybody found difficult and overbearing; and he’d welcome her to the room as if it was his party that he had organized especially for her.
Imagine the stir that gave.
But also as sort of a side note: People who think smartphones are the reason we are having less social conversation, and are less “present” nowadays, have obviously never met my father. They’ve been studying a bunch of amateurs. The real pros have been butting out of conversations and social etiquette since the beginning of time. And by the way? That is EXACTLY why I think most people are like my father, and like me, and maybe like you;
the smartphone is just a tool that can be used to create some much needed me-time, to disconnect from the outer world in favor of the inner.
To reconnect with what’s inside, even if it’s just for five seconds.
Now HOLD YOUR HORSES
I m not talking about actually RESPONDING to messages. Or being in any way reactive on your smart phone out of fear of missing out. I mean that for a lot of people their smart phone is a sanctuary where they can retreat, much like my father retreated in the newspaper.
Somebody should write about that;
how staying online in  a responsive way is actually misusing a medium that has the potential to be as sacred and introspective as a church.
So my father knew exactly when he wanted to show up, and when he didn’t. And although I personally would have benefited from him showing up for his family, instead of just starting to get involved when we were teens and he could focus on education and career -
I have to hand it to him;
He was teaching by example like a mofo.
To stay true to yourself. To choose your battles. To not waste your precious time, energy and your LIFE, – another Kat quote coming up -
“Dancing to the beat of somebody else’s drum.”
Lessons that seem to have been tailored to his oldest daughter in particular. That was my education, right there!
No wonder that I walked out on every job, every training, every education OR decided to do exactly what was required to get the diploma or whatever it was I needed out of it. No wonder I live alone, work alone, beg my friends to never invite me to parties, and celebrate my birthday with all my friends individually.
No wonder I only have people I have a real connection with in my yoga classes. And some of my classes are not even on the public page anymore; they’re so intimate we just call it a friends group.
But as a result, I AM always present. I speak highly of my students, I love to them bits, I would love to go on a date for my birthday with each and every on of them. And I know I teach my best and most inspired classes in my entire 15 year old career.
And most of the times even without reading a newspaper. ;)

{ follow #DailyKat on the page, Twitter, or Facebook }

M Yoga Nijmegen en online

Video below. People like you and me starts 16’20″
About
- needing lots of me-time
- walking out of personal development seminars and Landmark on her first day before 11 am
- creating from what’s within
- her and her clients: mornings always to yourself
- her and her clients: events also w time off from 4-7.30 pm because they (introvert people) get depleted more easily
- your job is to tune into your soul and listen to what it’s telling you in every area of your life. Down to the tiniest thing: does this decision/ desire/ action taking come from within?
Or from something outside that you trust and put your faith in more than in yourself?

DIY remove dark genital spots, angiokeratomas of Fordyce

female body with red rose petals“Anything I can not transform into something marvelous, I let go”
~ Anais Nin

from Wikipedia;
Angiokeratoma of Fordyce is a skin condition characterized by red to blue papules on the scrotum or vulva.

It’s been over a decade since I had my diagnosis, and I’m about 99% positive this is the official name. Reconstructing it with Google photos. I had rather not looked into it at all, because there’s always something more to click on and before you know it you’re on a page with risks and warnings and things that scare the shit out of you.
But for this piece I realized I had to come up with the Latin name as well, in order to make it easier for you to see if we’re talking about the same thing.
I m not going to include photos, because it always makes me slightly sick knowing someone had to “pose” for that. But I ll give you the description.
The genital spots I m talking about look like tiny blood blisters. You can clearly see they’re not related to those bright red “freckles” you can have on other parts of your body, and that also only appear with age.
I had my first genital ones appearing when I was in my early thirties.

In the Netherlands they are treated by the GP (general practitioner, huisarts) sometimes after contacting a dermatologist about the nature of the ailment. Because although it’s extremely common, it’s something you learn on the job. I suppose.
And there’s a first time for everything.
I have the same thing with my port-wine stain, or firemark, on my leg. Although it’s standard medical knowledge a doctor may not immediately recognize it.
Which is extremely annoying by the way, if you have a birthmark every doctor needs to look up.
Especially if you’re already showing you vagina, for example to get these spots sorted out, and then they ask: “What’s that?”
That doesn’t build trust.
Sometimes I just start by saying what it (the port-wine stain) is, not to have the medical consultation start off on entirely the wrong, slightly hostile foot. But then that doesn’t work either because then I’m basically confirming to myself that I expect the doctor is unskilled and ignorant.
Suffice to say my whole history of showing my vagina to a doctor, has always gotten derailed by the port-wine stain to begin with.
Getting the dark genital spots, and the countless times they (Dutch doctors) tried to cure it could easily be added to the pile of awkward experienced already present.
Just that they were far more painful.

If you live in America, I expect you can have more trust in your doctor to use a good painkiller, and will probably be referred to the hospital/ specialist anyway. Dutch GP’s have more skills under their belt than any of their international peers.
Except maybe in developing countries.
But I don’t want to give the impression that I would have preferred it to be otherwise.
I hate hospitals and doctors, and I go really well with that entrepreneurial approach of Dutch GP’s basically trying to do everything themselves first. It’s just that in combination with Dutch pain ethics, you are completely at the mercy of them using something that bares closest resemblance to a soldering iron to burn your dark genital spots away for you. Starting off with an intensity or level, indicating they probably had ZERO knowledge of how much it would hurt.
Without anesthetic.
And it was due to me insisting that they brought that level down, and reminding them every time I got a different doctor, that they had to use it at a lower level. Always leaving me thinking that apparently it wasn’t that they didn’t realize how much it would hurt, but that they didn’t saw any reason why I should not be able to take that.
That’s what I meant with Dutch pain ethics.
Anyway, when after years of going through these traumatizing treatments;
I m not going to use the word butcher. Oops.
The light painkiller (cream) failing;
which by the way was also my idea, not theirs,
And me being unable to sustain the injection of a real anesthetic, not even in combination with the cream;
Having the needle penetrate the skin was just as excruciating as having it burned away without anesthetics,
After that my doctor didn’t want to treat me anymore.
And I was done being berated on my inability to take pain and having a soldering iron used on my genitals.
So at least we were finally on the same page about it.
She said that she would refer me to a dermatologist if I ever wanted to get them removed again, and that I could also discuss there what they could offer me for anesthetics.
Clearly blaming me for being the impossible one.
One thing she did say, and for which I am grateful because otherwise I wouldn’t be able to write this piece, is that she could have used the liquid nitrogen instead. And she openly wondered why she had not thought of that before. Which again, illustrates how brazen Dutch doctors will be and that they won’t think about how to make it less painful until the point when you’ve already decided you’re going to stop.
But the good news was I didn’t need her help anymore because liquid nitrogen is also sold over the counter. It’s used to burn warts away, and it comes with an entire list of warnings including to never use it on your genitals. After having doctors attack my genitals with a soldering iron for years, I was entirely beyond the point where I was going to let someone else decide how I could treat my genitals.
Just watch me, you *insert insult*
I ll show you which one is the better doctor.
Although that’s not entirely fair, since it was a doctor who gave me the idea in the first place. But my hostility towards what they put me through, has never disappeared. Maybe because of the port-wine stain, I’ve never trusted doctors. And learned to trust myself instead.
So when her remark basically pointed me towards how I could remove the dark spots myself, I took it. And never went back.

DIY treatment of dark genital spots, using liquid nitrogen and ice

Read the instructions on the can of liquid nitrogen, which is an over-the-counter wart remover. The one that comes in a can, obviously. Ignore any warnings about using it on your genitals ;) 
Shave the area if nessecary and disinfect with alcohol.
Desensitize the area with an ice cube or anything frozen. Put the cube in a plastic bag, so that you don’t get everything wet. Now treat the spots in the desensitized area, according to the instructions. I do it for as long as I can take the pain, but I think in general 5 seconds is maximum, from what I remember.
There is a high chance you will not see any immediate effect.
If you want to you can repeat the treatment, but the effect can take some time. It doesn’t show immediately, yet when you take your first shower and wash yourself, you won’t be feeling any lump shaped spots, as the spots will have disappeared on the surface. Sometimes leaving a much deeper lying, vague, spot, which doesn’t look in any way weird anymore.
The area will be sensitive for a couple of days, but contrary to when my doctor treated me, I can never see any trauma after I ve done this myself.

closure (?)

I’m happy I finally chose to tell my story.
For multiple reasons, but the reason I think that after twelve years of silence something good came out of it, is that I have now transformed my experience to the point where it could help others who suffer from this condition. That they can remove the spots without having to see a doctor.
Here below (after much internal debate) I ll share the embarrassing incident, one I am far from getting closure on, which sparked my decision to be open about it.
Originally I was going to write a separate post, called “Sex scandal” or something. Where I share the story below. But it’s still so raw, and I feel so horrible about it, that I can’t even begin to put it somewhere on this blog where it serves as, I don’t know, click bait?
But my shame about the story below, combined with the story above, caused such a tight ball of fear, shame, disgust and self-loathing… I simply had no idea how to begin unraveling it. Except by doing just that; unraveling it. Starting by splitting it in two.
So above is the story about the dark spots.
And below is the second part, the story of what happened this week. Which gave me so much agony and sleepless nights that the last thing I wanted to do is to look this in the eye. This fear of exposure, and losing my dignity. Until I remembered what is possibly an even more famous quote of Anais Nin;

“Life shrinks or expands in proportion to one’s courage.”
~ Anaïs Nin

My personal story

99d780596dc0e007a158327279788d61--wallpaper-size-high-quality-wallpapersIt’s been twelve years since I got my diagnosis, and I ve always been quiet about it. Due to something that happened in the past week, I feel exposed. Literally. At first I thought it was the exposure part that I was supposed to focus on. Because I believe every problem can be used as a tool to grow stronger, to acquire a certain skill.
That life throws stuff at you, not to test if you’re strong enough. But to train you to stay flexible. Life doesn’t give you the same lesson twice. Even if what you’re supposed to learn is the same, your new lesson will have a shape you’re unfamiliar with. And sometimes? Once a year, or every five years, or maybe even every ten years?
You get a big one.
And in my case that was being exposed in a similar way a leaked sex tape has harmed a female Dutch celebrity, just last year. She was having an unusual form of sex, she was older, and the whole thing leaked to the media.
She stayed indoors for weeks and still calls it the most horrifying experience of her life. The knowledge that a large number of strangers, people you ran into shopping or going out, have seen it and possibly judge you for it.
After my first sleepless night, I realized this was probably the lesson; that I had to learn to keep my head high, even when something similar happened to me. And perhaps that i was now getting the lesson, now that I wasn’t famous (yet?) so that I would feel more confident that if something similar would happen, I would be able to handle it.
That before I would feel safe being more visible in the world, as a yoga teacher as a writer, I would need to come to terms with my biggest fear of being judged for my sexuality, of being seen nude or having sex. Of people being opinionated about how I have sex, and talking behind my back, making me feeling threatened and unloved.
That this had to come first.
Now as I said above, I later realized this was only half of the lesson. The other part of the lesson was that it was time to come to terms with my genital skin condition, and to bring that story out into the light.
So I did that first.
Because that part of the story/ part of the ball of fear, was already twelve years old, and because I had been confidently treating it myself for years, that was far less difficult than I expected it to be. I even tweeted that part of the story already, in the middle of the night, just so that I had consolidated the decision to tell it.
It came out smoothly.
But this last part, the new part, the part about the exposure?
That’s new. And it’s not even “done” yet. The circumstances will not be finalized, the story will not end for another year or so. So either I m going to make myself really small, stay low, hoping it will blow over. Or I m going to face it, and claim even the worst possible outcome as my own.
And take it all back.
Leave not a shred of shame about the whole incident on the table for someone else to use against me, to tease me with. Nothing. To stop caring entirely about what someone else has seen, or hasn’t seen. Knows about me, or think they know about me.
I m suddenly reminded about teenage girls suffering online exposure as well. Sometimes even resulting in them taking their own lives. We (women) are so easily slowed down, and basically just take ourselves out of the game – literally or figuratively – the moment we feel exposed.
There is so much fear.
I really feel that if I do this, tell you this, ALL OF IT, then part of it will live on into a much larger spirit. Like a being, an imaginary (or not?) helper that will find the minds of all women experiencing such a thing.
And all girls fearing it.
That every woman going through this, either has the choice to let it throw her off balance. Or to grow past it and to become – quoting an internet meme I always liked – that woman when your feet hit the floor the devil says; “Crap. She’s up.”
So here we go.
I live in an apartment building that will undergo large renovations in the upcoming year. Which means that for a period of a month, I will have to open up my house and give construction workers of all sorts unlimited access to do whatever it is they need to do.
Now from previous experiences I know these men to be absolutely shameless in preying on you, your personal life, and to treat you without any respect and especially not the regal treatment the person basically paying their bills, should get.
Don’t get me wrong I m not talking about individual workmen, coming to my door, on my request, to take care of a single thing. I ve never experienced any trouble there. I m talking about larger projects with multiple contractors, sometimes even subcontractors, and none of them making any attempt to respect your personal space.
A month.
To have your boundaries breached for eight hours a day by multiple men invading your personal space from every possible angle.
I think it goes without saying that I already feared this, as it is.
Thankfully, it was something that was not acute. They wouldn’t start in months. Or so I thought. Because last week I masturbated and did my dark spot treatment thing with the procedure above, and had the eerie feeling I was being watched. It could have been sparked by hearing some noises that indicated someone was in front of the windows of the floor where I live, but I don’t remember.
I remember I heard those noises at least once that week.
But I forgot if it was that day.
All I remember was saying to myself I shouldn’t be so paranoid, but afterwards – and of this part I am certain – I saw a high rise wagon (like with a big folded ladder on top) parked in front of my house. There was no one there (anymore?) but it made me feel very uncomfortable.
Then I remembered I had gotten a letter of the construction company, which I had not opened because I ve been getting letters for months now, and it was never anything that applied to me having to take action.
It said they were starting with some adjustments on the roof, and were going to use the high rise, or ladder wagon as I suppose it’s called.
Ever since then I have been unable to sleep.
My bedroom, where I did the treatment and the masturbating on the bed, has curtains, but I know they’re see through when the light is on on the inside. And it’s dark on the outside. I just never bothered to change them because I don’t have anything across the street from me.
But they offer little protection (if any), if there really was someone on the outside looking in. Someone who will go tell all the other boys, who will then be even more unpleasant to be around with for four weeks straight.
And – this is also important – I ve been deprived of privacy in my house and bedroom as it is, because I have a new neighbor and he has his bedroom next to mine. I hear his bed, he hears mine. When I masturbate I’m already concerned that I, or the bed, don’t make any noise. The walls are so thin. Something the big refurbishment will not change anything about.
I have the option of moving my bedroom to my study, but I have a neighbor over there on the other side of the wall as well. The only option for me to have some kind of privacy and not have my bed to a wall with someone so nearby, is to put my bed in the living room.
Maybe I will do that.
So after already feeling terrible about being way too intimate with the neighbor, and dreading the day I have to let the main supervisor and main contractor come into my house and be nice to them, to have them plan things and everything with me – I now have Workmen Watched Me Masturbate and Treat Pussy to worry about.
To add to the list.
I considered keeping this part quiet. So that in case they did not see anything, I had not basically exposed myself. But like I said – this can all take another year. And I don’t want to wait for a year to see if my worst fears have come true yes or no. If they saw anything. And then told all their colleagues.
Like I said, it’s all extremely raw. All I know is that I feel related to how other women and girls have been exposed, and although I have not unraveled all of it, I know that at the heart of it are the remains of fear of my own sexuality. That I feel ashamed being caught. If I think about a man being caught with the curtains closed, through a normally completely private window, by a construction company who had indicated they would start working high rise in any of the upcoming weeks;
Would this man be ashamed?
Would he dread the day those people came to refurbish his house?
Of course not.
He would shrug, ignore the whole thing, and he wouldn’t go out of his way to make them coffee or otherwise accommodate them the goddamn day. And when he got home and they were still there, they would think;
“Crap. He’s here.”

<3LSH
An Unexamined Life is Not Worth Living

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The brutal truth about being an artist- review of the movie “Mother!” {incl spoilers}

by LS Harteveld

screen-shot-2017-08-03-at-5-03-12-pmLet me clear something up. When the guy at the box office said:
“This is the worst movie I ve seen all year, but I recommend it to everyone because it brings up so much discussion.”
He wasn’t lying. At least not about the being the worst movie of the year part. But it didn’t bring up any discussion between me and my friend. In fact we were eager to discuss Atomic Blonde.
Again.
We had seen Atomic Blonde weeks before, and not only had it changed our lives, we also felt stained from the “Mother!” experience. As if we were afraid our memories of Atomic Blonde would become less bright, if we didn’t relive them quickly.
Fortunately we both seem to have the same urge, so we discussed how this manifesto of female power – which takes place in Berlin 1989 including matching soundtrack and slick black-and-white dressed style icon Charlize Theron – had given us the most inspiring role model since Uma Thurman’s Kill Bill.
The box office guy and his friends had discussed Mother! for three hours, after seeing it. But this was nothing compared to the impact of Atomic Blonde. My friend and me were on our third week of discussing it. We had been a little bumbed out that we had spent money on Mother! But as soon as we realized we had been able to preserve the memory of Atomic Blonde, which will not be released on dvd till December – we were relieved.
Our real treasure was still intact.
A few days later I was on a train. It was late, I was dead tired and I didn’t have the energy to write or to read. Much to my own surprise, I started watching “Mother explained” videos on YouTube. You can do this with every movie, and it gives you reviews from vloggers/channels that have specialized in watching and reviewing films.
I had done the same thing for Atomic Blonde, because the story line is impossible to follow. So now I did the same for Mother! Not because I had not been able to understand the story, but to find out what the director had meant to convey.
Everything, from this point onward, is thanks to the “Mother explained” videos on YouTube. If it hadn’t been for those, the story would have ended with me and my friend erasing the memory of it as quickly and thoroughly as possible.
On the surface Mother is about a young woman totally occupied with the refurbishment of an old mansion, restoring it to its former glory after a fire burned it to the ground. She lives there with her husband, a poet with a writer’s block. He is eventually inspired by a man, who he lets into their house, and from thereon more and more people come in, who behave like a plague. But they admire the poet and he feels very forgiving towards them.
Ultimately their presence destroys their house, and it takes the life of their infant and of his wife.
And then he recreates his world again. He lives in the same house (which he recreated with his mind. Her refurbishment was merely an embellishment) with a similar young woman. And the cycle will repeat itself.
One dialogue at the end captivates the drama that is going on. And I don’t have the script, so I do this by recollection, but it was something like;
“Who are you?” the young woman asks.
“I am me. I create,” the man answers. “That’s what I do.”
And with that you also understand that he also destroys, if only by proxy by inviting all the people in who clearly cannot be trusted around anything you value. Let alone around your wife, and the house that she has symbiotic ties to.
He destroys Life, so that he can rebuild it, recreate it. Whereas she symbolizes a preserving power, for which ultimately creators, artists, have little respect. Or maybe it’s not that they don’t respect is, it’s more that you can’t change the nature of the beast. A creator must create, and for that there must first be a need.
He must destroy.
I am a writer and I am familiar with his need to create. Although aside from this fictional poet, I usually feel little affiliation to other writers. Their art (writing) seems to be optional, as if they have a choice to write or not. I see this in particular if there is a writer’s block.
To me a writer’s block can mean one of two things;
1. You are making yourself write stuff you don’t want to write. And you’re confusing it with Art.
I can imagine that if you are caught up in thinking “What do people want to read?” or if you are under contract from a magazine to publish a certain amount of words about a certain topic, that every writer could suffer from a writer’s block.
But then this work that you’re set out to do here, is not going to be brilliant anyway. So train yourself to please your audience enough to make money with your craft, and be done with it. But don’t confuse this with Art. You re just doing your job.
Just like someone who collects garbage will be more inspired to do so on one day than the other, and yet his audience will be equally pleased and relieved that he came by to do his work.
The same way the audience will like reading your column.
But get over the idea that it needs to be groundbreaking, because it doesn’t. It needs to pay the bills, end of story.
The most interesting reason behind this form of writers block is when you are actually avoiding to do your true work! You know which book, which topic, which scary as fuck thing that you could fail massively at, you are supposed to write. But you make yourself write something else instead.
And then you block.
Be glad you did! It’s a gift from God to prevent you putting time and effort into something that is not your true purpose. Which brings me to number two.
2. Writing is not your art
I am currently making daily yoga videos. Or at least that’s what I am supposed to do. Even right now, Wednesday 27 September 1 pm, I am supposed to be on my yoga mat and do one to two hours of filming. The neighbors and the neighborhood are quiet. The lighting is perfect. Everything is.. Except for one thing: I NEED to write this review of Mother. The insights have developed in my head last night; A sleepless, drama filled night with heart pains, a sick cat, and a ton of resolutions to do better and work less and save my life.
I was going to be like the “Mother!” woman. Nurture my preserving energies, and activities, by prioritizing making slow, mindful, unpretentious yoga videos (I am a yoga teacher). Every day, two hours of breathing and yoga. I knew it would save my life.
But let’s take a different spin.
How about if I would call this a “video block”, okay? And I go around saying to people:
“I have a video block! I know I am supposed to have a great video channel, and be a world famous video yoga teacher, if I would only get around to actually doing it!”
How believable would that be on a scale from zero to one? Minus ten?
No one would believe that because it’s bullshit.
My purpose, my art, that which I cannot NOT do, is writing. The reason I am making myself, or at least trying to make myself, create those videos every day is to get enough relaxation into my life to not die from writing. To get less nights where I think I ll get a heart attack this year.
If you have to squeeze out your writing, the way I have to squeeze out my videos?
Then please let it be about writing being healthy for you. Or that it’s some sort of self-reflection tool that a therapist made you use. Or it’s something you want to do to pay the bills, like I said in 1. Any excuse will satisfy me, except one; you claiming that writing is your passion. Because clearly it’s not. And worst case scenario, you are actually missing out on your real passion because you are trying to be a writer. Maybe you are a different kind of artist (like a vlogger, using a different medium) or – and this would be even better;
you’re a gardener, or an interior decorator, or a real yoga teacher.
Someone with a predominantly preservative energy. Then focus on that. And bless you! Because like I said- I am planning two hours of non-writing non-creating into my day, because creating is eating me alive.
And since last night I know I can’t afford that.
My cat and me were in bed, both in bad shape and not doing too well. And I realized that for years I had been saying:
“I don’t have time for illness or rest. I need to get my books out, and then I ll see what’s left of my life and body.”
And now my books are out, All ten of them.
And I raised the blankets to let my cat Max in or out for the twentieth time that night and I realized that no one was going to be here for him if I die. No one is going to be home at four to six hour intervals to give him canned food, love and cuddles. To clear up his vomit in the middle of the night, and to let him sleep fur-to-skin like mother and baby.
He even wakes me up, before he has to vomit whereas normal cats want solitude if they feel sick.
No one is going to take care of Max the way I do;
Spending every night at home, hiring a baby sitter when I go away for more than half a day, and giving him his daily medicine cocktail which took months to come up with and help from a VET that wasn’t too strikt with the rules and regulations.
Without my love and care Max would have died a long time ago.
How is it possible that I have been so obsessed with my creative work that I thought getting those books out, was what was going to provide meaning to my life? And even worse;
That I was free to die after, apparently leaving Max behind?
On one side I feel blessed my writing is non-negotiable. Not an option. It’s like breathing: even if I wanted to I couldn’t NOT do it. And I intend to stay far from situations where writing is a job, or a choice.
But on the other hand I am motivated, now more than ever, to cultivate the preserving, Mother like energy in me. To give my body its rest, and to most of all keep it alive as long as little Max needs me.
And then, just like in the movie, I am free to let the Mother side of me crash and burn the whole place down. After which the Creator in me will rebuild every particle. Not by choice.
But because it’s who I am.

<3LSH
An Unexamined Life is Not Worth Living

My books are available internationally, at my Lulu store +
in Nederland neemt Boekhandel de Feeks sinds deze week de distributie op zich!

Het boek van de maand oktober is de jaren 80 coming of age novelle Mango
Mango staat tijdelijk gratis online & is op voorraad bij de Feeks (Nijmegen + webshop).

Mijn online yoga is te volgen bij M Yoga, net als de lessen in Nijmegen.

Honey, where art thou?

1994 madonna-q-magazine-1994-2

If it wasn’t for this post, you would start wandering this site, and get the eerie feeling something was terribly wrong… You would find some pretty steamy erotica from 2015, together with an abandoned diary, but where was the writer? Where was Miss Harteveld? The promise that she was working on her books, and the revelation that she had her coming out: those were the only signs she had made it into the new year.

WHERE IS LS HARTEVELD?!

You would shriek, and maybe you would shed a tear.
Or look on Twitter if you could find me there.
Which is where I live anyway, so that should be the first place for you to check.

But I have a new blog, The 100 Day Tutelage of Hsi Lai.
And I wanted this to be all new and fresh, so for 100 days you can find my posts there.
Just click the link, and leave me your email address.

And the only bodily fluids involved so far, are of the sexual kind.

Love,

L. 

 

That day LS Harteveld had her coming out‏

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Someone said: OMG how did your mom respond to your coming out?
Hey!
My mom has known about me being LS Harteveld, ever since the first letter went to paper in 2006.
She’s known that I quit my long term relationship a few months later, so I could explore being in love and sex all over again. I planned on treating myself to a second adolescence. A care-free one.
And she was all for that.
So no, my mom was not even informed on my coming out.

And by the way: if you are already subscribed to my yoga blog, if you re a family member, if you’re a close friend, or if you are one of the few male authors I definitely would, then you can stop reading now.
You ll know where to go, where to find me, and the only thing you MIGHT have missed is to sign up for this exclusive new blog. It’s about the 100 Day Tutelage of Hsi Lai, and it will contain oral sex.
Off you go now.

So there we are. Just you and me. You, a reader who has enjoyed my erotica and diaries for 6 years now, without pressing me to come out. To reveal myself. And if you did, I probably blocked you and kicked you off my mailing list.

I want to thank you. From the bottom of my heart.
I can’t tell you how wonderful it has been to shoot root and to grow as a writer, a lover, a human, with a pen name. I needed that. And after 6 years of writing this blog, LS Harteveld has become her own woman. She’ll stay on as the part of me that writes and as my media personality. But yes… there is more. Another side of me.

The woman you see at the top of this post is Suzanne L. Beenackers.

SHE is the one who writes funny, personal posts on yoga, every week since January 2015.

SHE is the one who has her own YouTube Channel, since September 2015. Where you can follow playlists such as #GirlBoss or The Erotica Series. And then she starts episode 1 with an exercise “the banana”, and giggles.

SHE is the one who teaches at a Dutch channel ominously named Rebel Yoga, where you can follow her courses for a super affordable fee.

SHE is the one who has a small basement studio in the heart of Nijmegen, where she’ll start a series of classes on The Sexual Teachings of the White Tigress, on Monday March 7.

SHE is the garden variety yoga teacher who just rewrote the home page of her company M Yoga. And it now oooooozes LS Harteveld.

All those years, I feared the day you would find out, that I was Suzanne L. Beenackers. Or that some jilted lover would out me, because he was angry. Or the new girlfriend of a jilted lover, or whatever. I feared someone would tell you my real name, when in the end it was just the other way around.

Because I never had to tell you I was Suzanne Beenackers.

The only coming out I had, was to tell the world that after 10 years of writing and being single, I had become the writer, the lover, the woman, #GirlBoss and White Tigress in the making.

I had become LS Harteveld.

With love,

L.

The Way of The Trickster‏

Big 0078504400000258-2881507-image-a-49_1419043664509Hi Sweeties!

I’ve been leading this totally offline mediocre life since early December, and it’s paying off in an expansive creative force that could last me till 2017. So I won’t be online till early March, maybe later.

But HAVE I GOT NEWS FOR YOU!

If you reread 2015′s blog posts you can notice how I ve developed a new life-changing (or better: game changing) theory. Twelve months ago I had my ominous meet cute with Mister Big, and invented the “Major League”:
a place to date but only if I was ready to up my game, to go to the next level. If I was prepared to be challenged and see if I could get something out of it, without being crushed. Without giving up beforehand.
And I did.
Twelve months later, I’m still alive, and I’m putting my game theory to paper. Or in my case, an off-line laptop from 1998, which is basically the same thing.

Because we need a new name, a new role model, for every soul who wants to get smarter, quicker, stronger; to become more flexible and more creative. We need to embrace our Trickster ways and start reaping the benefits (and having fun!) of this highly active and exciting spiritual path.

And since Mindfulness is taking the world by passive aggressive force, time is running out, and I’m writing my ass off to get this done. It’s called:

The Way of The Trickster
How I saved my business, conquered death and won a man’s heart.
Well, two out of three anyway.

I’m now on a 100 day quest to establish all those things, so if you don’t hear from me again, know my final thoughts were happy ones :)

Trickster will also be the first self-help book that is (drumroll)
SEXY!
Or did you really think I was going to leave my luscious naked body being handled in all sorts of hopefully non-consensual ways out of it? Maybe he could take me over a meditation pillow, just for narrative sake…..

The Way of The Trickster will be the first sensual sexual self-help book in the history of mankind, and if I fail to get this done, we all have to get back to Mindfulness.

Game ON, my friends.

Love,
L.

I won’t be online and keep in touch by newsletter and email. 

Monogamie als Zwarte Piet

Simone van Saarloosdoor LS Harteveld

Mijn exemplaar van het Het Monogame Drama van Simone van Saarloos dat gisteren pas in de winkels lag, is nu al toegetakeld met fluoriserend roze marker. Als de coating van de kaft niet zo glad zou zijn zou ook de ontroerende kop op de achterflap niet ontkomen zijn aan mijn drang iedere levensles, spitse constatering, en missing link in mijn eigen ontwikkeling te markeren als lijdraad voor de tweede helft van mijn leven. Het kopje op de achterflap van Het Monogame Drama is:

Een Ode aan de Single als Wereldverbeteraar en Levenskunstenaar

Pas toen het er zo stond, en ik een traantje wegpinkte, realiseerde ik mij hoe miskend ik mij had gevoeld. Totaal niet gesteund door de maatschappij. Blijkbaar had ik er toch last van dat stelletjes en gezinnen (en überhaupt mensen met kinderen) standaard verheven worden boven singles, en was ik ergens in de monogamie-roltrap van Simone van Saarloos gaan geloven; waarin alle eerdere relaties alleen in dienst staan van de weg naar boven. Dat je niet geacht wordt een beetje rond te krabbelen op hetzelfde plateau in een relatie die nergens heengaat. Terwijl ik wist dat mijn werk als levenskunstenaar en positie als single, bijzonder was, bewust was, en alleen daarom al prijzenswaardig. Maar een ode, nee, die had ik nog nooit gehad.

Het essay Het Monogame Drama laat zien dat het ideaal van de monogame relatie, is geworteld in een maatschappij die uit angst voor chaos en onzekerheid, haar probeert uit te bannen. Daar tegenover stelt zij het leven van singles, polygamen, polyamoren, samengestelde gezinnen, alternatieve gezinsvormen rondom alleenstaanden en homoseksuele stellen met een kinderwens. Zij zijn gedwongen geweest over hun relatievorm na te denken, en komen daarmee volgens Simone als winnaar uit de bus: hun relaties zijn stabieler, vrijer, en t is ook voor de kids een stuk lekkerder opgroeien als de biologische paps en mams niet hun hele ziel en zaligheid op elkaar projecteren, maar eerst nadenken over een werkbare vorm; één die flexibel kan reageren op veranderende omstandigheden. En in het creëren van een flexibele, en dus sterke, structuur slagen deze niet-kerngezinnen meestal een stuk beter dan het monogame ideaal waarin het gezin een soort huis is waar men zich slechts naar binnen hoeft te vechten, en er vervolgens t leven veilig uit kan zitten.

Voor ik de eerste streep marker zette, vroeg ik mij af wat Simone ervan zou vinden als ze haar boek zo uitgeleefd ter signeren voor zich kreeg. Was het wel verstandig dit te doen, of zou het de verhoudingen verstoren? Het proces dat zich toen in mijn hoofd afspeelde was identiek aan datgene wat Simone bepleit: Kijk naar jezelf. Wat doet het met je?
Waarom maakte ik mij druk wat Simone ervan zou zeggen als ik haar boek had volgekliederd?
En als my worst fears bewaarheid zouden worden en ze zou weigeren het te signeren, was dat dan een reden om het niet te doen?
Simone’s boek zit vol met taboes die ze gewetenloos (of juist gewetensvol dus) tegen het licht houdt. En één daarvan is ons taboe iets te weigeren dat wordt gegeven. Ze komt met een prachtig voorbeeld van haar vader die vlak na een ruzie met zijn vrouw dit afreageert op Simone, die in de speelgoedwinkel iets uit mag zoeken. Hij dringt haar allemaal cadeau’s op. Wil ze dit niet? Dat misschien? De aandacht mist. Simone begint te huilen.
Het taboe zit niet alleen in het iets weigeren dat wordt gegeven, zoals Simone op dat moment het cadeau van haar vader niet kan weigeren, maar ook in het iets geven dat geweigerd kan worden, waardoor we angstig worden en ervoor kiezen dan maar niets te geven om onszelf het risico te besparen afgewezen te worden. Zoals ik overwoog mijn boek maagdelijk te houden, zodat Simone mij er niet op kon afwijzen. Terwijl ik nu, mét mijn beduimelde exemplaar, Simone de ruimte geef te reageren zoals ze wil. Zoals ik iedereen de ruimte wens te geven te reageren zoals zij willen. Zoals ik ook van iedereen de ruimte wens te krijgen te reageren zoals ik wil én te geven wat ik wil.
Maar een monogame relatie is een relatie waarbij ik het boek precies zo aanlever zoals Simone dat wil, zodat zij van mij blijft houden. En als ik desondanks wil krassen en schrijven in het boek, koop ik een nieuwe voor daarnaast. Want het cover-to-cover uitgeleefde exemplaar zou haar maar pijn doen, en ik wil haar geen pijn doen.
Door deze vergelijking wordt duidelijk dat monogamie mij de mogelijkheid ontneemt mijzelf te laten zien, en ik ga kontendraaien om maar niet afgewezen te worden. En ik ontneem Simone de mogelijkheid mij te zien, en te waarderen of af te wijzen op wie ik “echt” ben. Monogamie wordt zo de dood in de pot voor persoonlijke groei.

In de vele interviews met Simone is zij genuanceerder. Daarin zegt zij: Iedere relatievorm, mits bewust gekozen, is goed. Daarmee neemt zij afstand van het demoniseren van monogamie. En terecht. Want het probleem zit niet in de relatievorm, maar in de onwil van mensen deze bewust aan te gaan en zich vervolgens wél beklagen (of op zijn minst verbazen) over alle problemen en onvrede die eruit voortkomen.

Dit artikel heet: Monogamie als Zwarte Piet. Dit komt van de uitdrukking “Zwarte Pieten”- iets of iemand de Zwarte Piet toeschuiven. Dit is nooit terecht. Ook in Simone’s essay is het feitelijk onterecht dat ze de monogame relatie de schuld in de schoenen schuift. De ingedutte beklemmende monogame relatie waarin beide partners naar hartenlust elkaar overal de schuld van geven is een gevolg van een veel dieper probleem: namelijk het onvermogen of de onwil om verantwoordelijkheid te nemen voor je gevoelens. Om als je de Zwarte Piet trekt je af te vragen: Wat doet dit met mij? En hoe kan ik hier op een andere manier naar kijken zodat ik uit mijn kinderlijke gekwetste reactie kom? Ik ben het niet eens met Simone die suggereert dat haar relaties soms op hetzelfde niveau blijven: ze is van de roltrap gestapt en speelt het “spel” van de relatie, om het spel. No way. Zij staat ook een roltrap. Ik sta op een roltrap! Alleen gaat die van ons ergens anders heen: in plaatst van het eindpunt van het monogame (monomane!) kerngezin, leidt die van ons tot zelfkennis, bewustzijn en een sterkere game play. Wij kunnen steeds sterkere spelers aan, steeds moeilijkere situaties, die steeds meer van ons vragen. Ik noem dit op dit blog The Major League. Een niveau waarop letterlijk alleen The Players zitten. De Don Juan’s en hun vrouwelijke tegenhangers;  Zij die spelen met de liefde. En er gebeurt van alles: er wordt vals gespeeld. De regels zijn onduidelijk. Je wordt continu met jezelf geconfronteerd. Maar uiteindelijk is dit voor “ons” levenskunstenaars, wel het niveau waarop we uitgedaagd worden. Waarop wij onszelf persoonlijk kunnen ontwikkelen.

De speltheorie kan trouwens wel degelijk ook voor gezinnen en monogamisten opgaan: hun gameplay kan sterker worden bij ieder kind, bij t in huis nemen van ieder pleegkind, verhuizingen, organiseren van feestjes en t verzorgen van 50 glutenvrije, notenvrije, verantwoorde traktaties die om 8 uur s ochtends mee naar school moeten. Ik zeg niet dat er hier geen uitdagingen zijn, maar zij kiezen ervoor de structuur, de relatievorm, vast te leggen, en dat komt ze duur te staan als deze structuur flexibiliteit mist, en dus niet bestand is tegen veranderingen in gezinssamenstelling/ inkomen/ bedreigingen in de vorm van nieuwe geliefden. Dan moet je alsnog je randvoorwaarden/ vorm gaan bijstellen, terwijl je je daar nou juist niet mee bezig wil houden omdat er zoveel werk te doen is.

Het idee van de speltheorie versus de monogame relatie sluit aan bij een wijdverbreide aanname dat je mag/ moet rondfladderen als je jong bent en tegelijkertijd dat er iets mis is als je boven de dertig “nog” geen vaste relatie hebt. Individuele verschillen in belastbaarheid, talent voor monogamie etc, daargelaten zou het in zijn algemeenheid juist andersom moeten zijn: monogamie is een veilige start van je liefdesleven. Het is het ondiepe, waar je niet kunt verdrinken, en naar behoren leert zwemmen. Maar wie na zijn dertigste nog niet zelfstandig kan zwemmen, en rekent op de haak van de zwemleraar of de aanwezigheid van de kustwacht om hem te redden, die mist zelfstandigheid. Als monogamie een vaste plaats zou hebben, dan is zij er om de zwakkere of de beginners te beschermen. Zij is de vaste grond voor wie de roltrap nog helemaal niet op durft. Voor wie nog geen verantwoordelijkheid kan nemen voor zijn eigen gevoelens, en niet in staat is tot zelfreflectie.

Met vijf december is ook de Zwarte Pieten discussie in bredere zin weer relevant. Deze ontvouwt zich op dezelfde wijze als het vraagstuk monogamie: Tegenstanders van Zwarte Piet en monogamie claimen dat zij erover hebben nagedacht. Voorstanders claimen in beide gevallen dat het nu eenmaal zo hoort. En ik zie een overeenkomst in de oorzaak van waarom men elkaar niet begrijpt:
Voorstanders van monogamie en Zwarte Piet houden vast aan de vorm, zonder zichzelf vragen te willen stellen als:
Wat doet deze discussie met mij?
Waar komt die weerstand vandaan dit onderwerp opnieuw te bekijken en te definiëren?
En hoe kan ik hiernaar kijken zodat ik uit mijn kinderlijke reactie kom?
Maar ook tegenstanders van Zwarte Piet, maken een fout. En het is dezelfde, en wat mij betreft de enige, fout die Simone van Saarloos maakt: zij verheffen bewustzijn tot de norm. Tot “het goede”.
Het maakt niet uit welke relatievorm, als hij maar bewust is aangegaan.
Het maakt niet uit of je voor of tegen Zwarte Piet bent, maar als je de discussie niet aan wilt gaan, dán ben je een slecht mens.

Maar die mensen willen helemaal niet naar zichzelf kijken. Of ze kunnen het niet. Zelfreflectie is de nieuwe randvoorwaarde, het nieuwe verlichtingsideaal. En daarmee is gebrek aan zelfreflectie het nieuwe taboe, of de nieuwe waterscheiding in onze samenleving; zij dit dat wel kunnen en zij die dat niet kunnen. Of niet willen.
En dit speelt niet alleen bij relatievormen – waar hele volksstammen het echt heerlijk vinden alles wat er mis is in hun leven te projecteren op hun partner (of gebrek aan partner) maar bijvoorbeeld ook bij de gezondheidszorg; de preventieve screening op kanker (bevolkingsonderzoeken) wordt ons als nationaal kalmeringsmiddel door de strot geduwd om een existentiële angst weg te duwen. Terwijl de vraag: Waarom word ik hier zo bang van? Niet gesteld wordt. Noch: hoe kunnen we de bevolking helpen anders te denken zodat zij uit hun onvolwassen reactie komen?

De vraag: Wat doet deze onzekerheid met mij, en hoe kan ik hiermee omgaan? Is er één die door de maatschappij standaard wordt beantwoord met van tevoren al gedoemde poging de onzekerheid weg te nemen. Van Saarloos legt dit feilloos bloot. Een systeem moet juist daarom zo gebouwd zijn dat t sterker wordt van de reactie op veranderende omstandigheden. Dat t transformeert en muteert, en daar steeds beter en sneller in wordt. Het systeem kan als het ware zijn eigen game play verbeteren, en daarmee tot in de lengte van dagen op hoog niveau blijven meespelen. Daarentegen is een samenleving die het wegnemen van risico’s als voornaamste defense meganism heeft, kwetsbaar en heeft daarom slechts de keus tussen leren buigen of eerst barsten. 

De onmogelijkheid van het ombuigen van monogamie naar vrijheid, van Zwarte Piet naar gewoon Piet, van een starre op angst gebaseerde samenleving naar een weerbare en flexibele, zit in het gebrek aan zelfreflectie. In het onvermogen met een afstand naar het eigen handelen en de eigen emoties te kunnen kijken. En het onvermogen van Simone van Saarloos, en van mij, zit in het idee dat iedereen tot zelfreflectie in staat is en daar dan ook nog iets mee wil. Wij hebben geen geduld met mensen die ergens in de angstige krochten van het onverlichte bestaan trouwend, kinderen producerend, bang voor alles en nergens verantwoordelijkheid voor nemend, ronddolen. Dus daarom moeten wij ons afvragen:
Waarom vind ik het zo erg dat zij hiervoor kiezen?
Wat doet dit met mij?
Hoe kan ik hier anders over denken zodat ik uit mijn kinderlijke, betweterige houding kom?

Dit vermogen tot zelfreflectie is de kracht van Simone van Saarloos en van mij. Dit is onze flexibiliteit, ons talent, en hiermee kunnen wij met een gerust hart iedere verbinding aangaan;  Wij benoemen, analyseren, reflecteren. Mensen relatievormen aanpraten zoals Simone en ik die hebben, is het paard achter de wagen spannen. Dat draagt absoluut niet bij aan hun welzijn, noch aan dat van ons. Dus linksom of rechtsom, monogamie verdient geen Zwarte Piet. En hoewel beide alleen als concept bestaan, staat het je vrij er rotsvast in te geloven.