ukrainian by blood

Sunday, March 06, 2022

Не сьогодні. Не завтра. Ніколи.

Boston. 2016. Pro-Ukraine rally.

I still can’t believe what’s going on in Ukraine.

It hurts to even try and wrap my head around it…

But, I suppose, if one could possibly find some good in all of this bullshit, it would be me.

I haven’t kept up with my Ukrainian studies since we moved to Florida, and even before then, I was kind of hit or miss. The only time I was completely focused on the language was when I was cramming before our trip to Ukraine.

I’ve been obsessed - of course - with what’s going on overseas and I’m getting a lot of my news from Ukraine-based media. Of course, that means that all my news is in Ukrainian.

Can I just say? My reading and listening comprehension are through the fucking roof.

I can’t write and can’t speak, but I can listen like a motherfucker.

(Also, I may have a bit of a lady boner for Zelenskyy right now.)


- - - - - - - - - -

I had an epiphany earlier this afternoon.

I had this best friend, codenamed Soulmate Boy, because that’s what my dad used to call him.

He was my everything for such a long time but never any sort of love interest. Not even friends with benefits, even though we would have been great at that.

Anyhoo… while I was in college, he went into the Marines. He’d always wanted to be a Marine, but something went terribly wrong and he was medically discharged. I’ve romanticised and torn apart our relationship for so long, that I honestly can’t tell fact from fiction* anymore. I do know it was an honourable discharge, and I’m 99.999999% sure it was health related.

When he came home, he wasn’t himself. He lived in a shitty apartment in a shitty area near the airport and I never wanted to go there.

I get this random call from him one night and I know that shit is seriously sideways, so I jump in my car and drive from Storrs to Windsor Locks. At like 3AM.

He wants to kill himself and apparently I’m the only one that either understands or can stop him. (Again, shitty memory. Sorry.)

Most traumatic experience of my fucking life at that point in time, but the crisis was averted and life went on.

Fast forward to a few decades later and we have, of course, lost touch.

Until I get the calls and text messages to get on any of the major CT channel websites. They are all broadcasting this… situation.

Apparently, Soulmate Boy, decided that suicide by cop was the top item on his to-do list that day.

He didn’t succeed, but he did do several years in prison.

Tomorrow is his birthday and he randomly flits in and out of my life, my heart, my head, despite my best efforts to shove those parts of my life into a little box and bury it deep in the backyard.

Where was I?

Epiphany. Right.

I’m folding my laundry and it hit me hard… what if he really wants to die, he just doesn’t want to be alone when it happens?

Like an assisted suicide?

I have lots of thoughts about him. Our friendship. Our distance. Just… us, but that was a thought I’ve been unable to shake all day.

I don’t know what to do with that. It’s a lot to unpack, you know?

Any way you slice it, though, it’s left me upset in a way I’ve never been upset before. (And I thought I had a good handle on all my various moods.)

I really hope he’s well, that’s he’s living his best life… but I wouldn’t be surprised to find out that he’s dead, either.

In all honestly, I think he’s kind of both. Like a real life Schrödinger’s cat.

And, fuck, I know that makes absolutely zero sense if you’re not me, but you’ll just have to deal with it.

*I took a writing class and used the penultimate night of our friendship for my assignments. Scott and Kate has been shared with one person I know IRL. C-Rollz loved it, but he’s the only one I’ve ever shared it with, and he kind of bullied me into it. (It’s also posted on a fiction sharing website, but in the nine years it’s been on the site, I’ve never received one bit of feedback about it.) I think about it occasionally and wonder if I should tighten it up. I mean, the teacher raved about it, but it feels so naive. Maybe that’s part of its magic? Whatever.

Posted by Matty on 03/06 at 06:48 PM
#fuckPutinukrainian by bloodPermalink

Wednesday, March 02, 2022

Filling holes

I think I’ve learned all possible variations of the word fuck…

I’ve been relatively quiet about the effect the war is having on me, personally.

A couple comments here and there, a lot of reposts of things that make me proud to be a Ukrainian, but not the soul-searching self important crap I post here.

Here’s the thing though - that fucking book, “Losing Your Parents, Finding Yourself”, continues to come back to haunt me.

(You know, the book I set fire to, that published bits from my mother’s will. Yeah, that one.)

So, about a decade ago, I decided to research my roots.

My father’s side is relatively simple. Maine, Maine, Maine, Maine, Maine, Connecticut. There’s nothing fun there to research.

My mother’s side, however? JACK-FUCKING-POT.

Being Ukrainian was sort of this odd… thing? I was a Ukrainian, but I couldn’t find it on a map, I didn’t grow up speaking the language, and I had very little access to the culture because my mother wanted nothing to do with it.

Then, of course, everyone started dying and I lost contact with the ones that were still alive.

So, there I am. Completely alone in the world. (We’re not counting my husband, nor his family. Not that it matters, I’m not close to his family anyway.) Knowing something is missing, but not knowing what.

Learning what it means to be from Ukraine, remembering the good memories and filling in the blanks with the social / cultural stuff I didn’t know… it was something.

I went full Ravenclaw. I out Hermione Granger’d Hermione. I jumped in and there was no looking back.

I started educating myself on Ukrainian history. I started taking Ukrainian lessons. I went to Suzi-Q. I went to Toronto. I hired a company to do the genealogical research for me. Then, I had them arrange a trip to Lviv and my grandparents’ village.

I had an identity again. A sense of purpose.

I felt like I belonged to a family again…

Even if I was born in the United States, I am the first generation that was born in the States. (My grandparents were born in Ukraine, my mother in Germany thanks to the Nazis…)

And just as all the pieces were starting to come together, just as I was getting ready to plan a return trip to Ukraine, this happened.

How very first world, yeah? Oh, no, that pesky Putin ruined my vacation plans…

But there’s more to it than a missed vacation.

A lot more.

I don’t know how to process this.

My shrink is going to have a field day with this next week…

Posted by Matty on 03/02 at 08:00 PM
#fuckPutinukrainian by bloodPermalink

Sunday, February 27, 2022

Слава Україні! Героям слава!

Are toddlers even capable of understanding safe, sane, and consensual?

From one of my 18+ Sims groups.

While I have a number of mods, one that is 50 shades of… 18+... is definitely not one of them.

I definitely have nothing against the lifestyle, but it’s nothing I want to bring into my Sims’ lives. Growing weed in the backyard is more my style. *grin*

All I can say is, somebody has a sense of humour.


- - - - - - - - - -

It’s Racery time and I have not been motivated to run in any way shape or form. Part of it is that I get stuck in my head and lately that’s not a very safe place.

I did cap yesterday. Four and a half hours at a leisurely 18mm pace. An hour on the treadmill is hard. Four and a fucking half hours is INSANE.

I want to cap again, but I don’t want to do it all in one go, so at about noon, I’ll hop on the treadmill and go for 7.5 miles. Then, at some point before Quidditchcast, I want to get in another 7.5 miles. I want to steal a shout out in the worst way today. I need the atta girl so badly.


- - - - - - - - - -

So, Putin did start a war with Ukraine.

I’m not surprised; he waited until the European countries and the States were at their weakest.

Nobody wants to get too involved, because he’s so unhinged. They’re afraid to bring themselves into the firing line.

Sanctions are useless. Meetings are useless. He’s not going to break. He won’t give an inch until he either destroys Ukraine or takes it over.

As I discovered several years ago, there are people in my grandparents’ village with my grandmother’s maiden name. Two names that appeared on the genealogical report I had someone do. I’m not convinced they’re really my grandmother’s family but, somewhere along the line, we must share the same DNA. They survived WW2. They got to watch Ukraine become a free country. If they’re still alive, they’re reliving the most terrifying time of their lives.

I went through all the Ukrainian tutors I had tried and most of them live in or around Kyiv. There’s one near Odesa. (Yes. That’s the correct spelling. The other version is Russian.)

Then, there’s the guy who was our assigned tour guide / interpreter during our trip to Lviv. Super worried about him, even though Lviv is currently out of the line of fire.

I’m watching from the sidelines, safe and sound in my middle class suburban home in the southern US, and I’m terrified for them. Fuck, the Kyiv Post was reporting this morning that they attacked a children’s’ cancer center. FUCKING CHILDREN DYING OF CANCER can’t even catch a break. They didn’t need to bring children into this. Not like that.

Seriously, fuck Putin.


Ukraine’s glory has not yet died, nor her freedom,
Upon us, my young brothers, fate shall yet smile.
Our enemies will perish, like dew in the morning sun,
And we too shall rule, brothers, in our own land.

Souls and bodies we’ll lay down, all for our freedom,
And we will show that we, brothers, are of the Cossack nation!

Posted by Matty on 02/27 at 10:22 AM
#fuckPutinpolyglot in trainingukrainian by bloodPermalink
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