written on the wall in crimson

bat-wing ankh

Ankh Ankh

This is now overflow turf for old entries, and with any luck, will still be trimmed down to five or so at any given time. (There's more here now, of course, but I'm in the trimming-down process.)

15 October 2002:
The pieces of my life are starting to grate when they move together. I haven't been back on Sphynxcat's IRC channel in, gods, probably a month by now. Nothing's gone wrong--that I know of--it's just...not something I can tune into at this point. Plus the new meds are back to scaring me--I skipped a dose today and fell into a sleep that felt like coma for about five hours. I kept trying to pull out of it and never quite managed until whatever it was, whatever crash had happened, hypoglycemic or not, had passed. I'm slowly losing my ability to remain the solitary pilgrim in town, and, regardless of the scars, regardless of the emotional pain that's still present, I'm getting involved in the local pagan community again. I'm probably, against all better judgement, even going to the Witches' Night Out Ball this year, because the place where it's being held burned down last week and the owners are insisting that, damn it, arson fire or not, they're holding the damn dance with generators if they have to.

Only, there's no water to the building, and there's really no way to legally get around that. So it's still up in the air when it's going to be held.

And I've been talking to Bholanath on the side. Man has a mind like an eel. It's been interesting. So, of course, the me here part of this early-morning posting.

It all ties up in uncomfortable ways with the fact that, for something completely unrelated to this site, I've been reading slash stories about Clark Kent and Lex Luthor, and for some reason, half the stories I've been reading have involved biting, and wounding, and Lex licking blood from the wounds, and...gods...Yeah. Sure. This is what the local vampire needs, a steady diet for several hours of young attractive men screwing their brains out in interesting outfits with blood involved.

I may need help.

11 October 2002:
So, it's been a while. Been really busy, actually. But somewhere in all the hustle and bustle my love in life found a new career (pro dom with her own tiny dungeon), fed me for the first time in I can't remember how long, and found a slave that could charm my heart, let alone hers. This lady is not only (according to that busy love, and the sounds I hear through the thin walls) very responsive, but she also has a wicked sense of humor and she sews. This is not a big deal to people who don't have to pay double to get something that doesn't fit right. She is a professional seamstress, and she has agreed--assuming we keep her in fabric, and why wouldn't we--to make a wardrobe for my lady and myself.

Sounds like a plan to me.

Metformin update: as you can see from the above, the hunger's back in force. Blood, sugar, sweets, ice, cold drinks, sweet drinks, fruit juice--the hypoglycemia's the worst it's been since 1996. Whether I can afford it or not, I'm going to make an effort to keep Odwalla Superfood in the house (or other equivalent algae drink), and try and increase my consumption of foods with a high glycemic index (like carrots, beets and peas) to keep my sugar up. My doctor's understandably worried about that. I'm understandably worried about the fact that I'm taking two potassium-sparing drugs, and won't that up my blood potassium levels?

I'll know when the tests come back, after my next endo appointment, but it does make my mind uneasy.

31 August 2002:
Been a hell of a month. My social worker signed me up for a class through Goodwill called Chart Your Course. Supposedly one of those ego-boosting exercises that will impress all of us poor disabled people to get off our poor disabled asses and get off the public dole. In my case, it may or may not work--I remain convinced I can't get a job, being a fat chick with a beard, but I might have become convinced to go back to school. So for the second time, I'm going to make the attempt to sign on and complete a course of instruction.

I'm a little scared about this. On the plus side, I no longer have to get up at seven ayem for a while, slather my bod in sunscreen, and stagger out the door to class. So that's a yay thing.

In other news, the endo appointment went alarmingly well. I now have two new medical terms to add to my glossary. I have been diagnosed with acanthosis nigricans, an ailment that comes from being hyperinsulinemic. Also, my doctor wrote a letter to the state calling me someone with 'profound hyperandrogenemia', as well as dyslipidemia. Whee, all the new medical terms!

What this breaks down to is, yes, I have PCO, which we knew. How'ver, now we know it by diagnosed symptomology. How this impacts my vampirism is interesting--my doctor put me on two new prescriptions. One of them's for Metformin, a medicine that interrupts the insulin resistance cycle. It causes only mild hyperglycemia, but since I was hyperglycemic to start with, it's causing some mild sugar crashing after I take it. So I'm going to have to watch that--eat more often, eat smaller meals, that kind of thing. The odd thing has been how Metformin's decreasing my hunger--it's lowering my need for blood, while at the same time making me crazy for protein. I'm wondering if this is a good or bad thing, but it does leave me without that knife-in-the-belly bloodhunger, so I'm going with it for now.

Nearly August 2002: Some changes. Moved the rantings/update essays to their own page so they'd take up less space here. In the meantime, I'm still trying to verify that all the links work, and work on getting graphics that are actually visible. Phhht.

Not much has changed, still in Spokane, yada yada blah. Back in touch with some of the rebel boys over on Seattle Vampire, though, and that feels all kinds of good. I'd be back in touch with the Vampire Donor Alliance but they're still in the land of mass postings. They probably always will be.

And, surprisingly enough, still haven't forgotten what happened over on the other vampire list I was on, so can't go back there yet...if ever. Sad. Fractious community this is; even on the shredded edges as I am, it's a fractious and highly volatile bunch.

Late July 2002: I may have found the perfect way to deal with not feeding and having a body in physical collapse: insomnia and updating my webpage. If hallucinations don't set in, I might start to like this. Strange thing about insomnia, and this requires a little digression. Took in a movie tonight with a friend--local theatre has started running midnight movies, and this weekend was Fight Club. Fight Club, in addition to being a stellar film, mentions insomnia. Insomnia, it says, creates distance. You wander through your life, half-asleep, half-awake, at all times drifting and disconnected. That's where I am now. Add that to the growing list of medical complaints:

  1. PCO

  2. migraines, potentially due to hormone imbalance

  3. bad joints, potentially due to hormone imbalance

  4. carpal tunnel (the doctor qualified it as 'mild' on one side, and 'less mild' on the other--what, exactly, does that mean?)

  5. we've reached the stage where my doctor's scale no longer goes up high enough to accurately weigh me

  6. and let's not forget a possible case of anemia, due to a going-on-two-weeks-now bout of falling asleep at random intervals, being continuously tired, and feeling incredibly fatigued and dizzy

  7. which brings us to this week's wonderful new friend, insomnia

The problem with an ongoing fatigue state when combined with insomnia is that I end up wandering around, tired all the time, tired enough to fall down, but then when I do, when I lay down and try to sleep, my brain won't shut off. I'm not saying, oh, yes, definitive mark of the vampyr here, I'm saying it's more of my unique physiological insanity, but it's still a very annoying thing.

Which brings us up to date and down to delete the oldest entry.

July 2002: Due to several months of being unable to access any computer and get online, I lost my entire page on Dreamwater. (You'll notice that, in the corrected, not-pulled-down-from-Internet-Wayback-Machine pages, you won't see a Dreamwater credit anymore). They have a 50 meg limit. I had 37 megs of page materials, stored files, graphics, et cetera, that I will never see again. I realize my part in all of this was that I didn't back up anything to external disk. On the other hand, as I can't recall anything being specifically mentioned when I signed up, I a) thought they had the standard 90-day use-it-or-lose-it clause in their contract (they don't, btw--it's a 30-day auto-delete), and b), as I didn't have my own computer at that time, I was using them as drop-box storage, thinking, every three months I will get on and keep my page going until I get my own computer.

So. Amidst this spring's wonderful pagan organization disintegration-in-progress (a story I don't specifically plan to retell here, because it's long, drawn-out, and ugly no matter from which side I relate it), I spent something like two months off-line. The first month Dreamwater zapped me and I never knew. Second month I fought my way to a computer and realized that everything was gone.

Now I'm having a hell of a time tracking everything down that *was* once there. I'm using a combo of the Internet Wayback Machine and Google's online cache service, but it's hard, slow going. And I'd truly like to complain to Dreamwater, maybe point out to them that it might be a grand idea if they upped their auto-delete function to 90 days, but right now I'm still spitting fire over the loss. I'm trying to see rationally that it wasn't their fault, that all they saw was an account inactive for 60 days--but it's hard. It's hard not to take it personally and resent them for destroying things I may never get back. Original poetry I didn't have backed up anywhere else, stories I'd posted just to those pages, information pages in sections that don't seem to be accessible through the Wayback Machine...it's still a crushing loss to me, even now.

So is being a vampire right now. I can't remember the last time I fed. We haven't had the money enough to start investigating the beet juice and chlorophyll alternatives a friend tipped me off about. And now, I find myself falling asleep at completely random times, not having the energy God gave a soapdish, and wondering if I've fallen into some weird sort of anemic state. (Check this: my doc says, oh, it's probably just allergies--if it hasn't cleared up in two weeks, come back and talk to me. Riiiight.)

Oh, yeah, And Spokane still sucks. Like I haven't said that enough times.

January 2002: 2002 already. You can tell how often I update this page, huh? Well, still in Spokane. Looks like I'm going to be stuck here for at least two more years. On the plus side, I'm currently listed as partially disabled, due to knee and joint pain, and the hormonal weirdness (which has nothing to do with vampirism, as far as I know). On the down side, the Supreme Court just voted against people with partial disabilities--basically, their decision said if you can get out of bed in the morning, brush your teeth and fix breakfast for yourself, you aren't disabled. Great. So, not being able to walk around much beyond that is not good enough? Having to use a cane to cross my living room doesn't count? Phhhht.

August 2001: Those of you looking beyond the last five updates are bound to be disappointed. I only keep the last five, otherwise this page would be needlessly long. I do still have the original essay I wrote for this page linked in here and there, so you can revel in the first babblings. In the meantime, I'm back in Spokane, Washington, and it doesn't suck as bad as it did previously. Don't get me wrong--it's still dead and barren and weird here, and not in any good way. But there are better sights and stronger friendships to be had this time around, so it's not as bad. I'm learning to be open about wanting blood--that damned honesty bug, it's going to get me arrested or beaten to death by rednecks any day now--to those near and dear at least, save for my immediate family, who--okay, all the gays in the audience, say it with me-- "just wouldn't understand". Yep, I knew you knew it.

Aprille 2001: My lady love keeps threatening to feed me. By this I mean she says 'You're really hungry, let me go get the blade', and then she forgets, or I forget, or I get a migraine and have to curl up in a ball under my bed, or she has an attack of suicidal depression and I'm yet again having to be the Strong One...Things. Shit. Lots of things and shit happening. Between one thing and another I haven't fed on anything beyond occasional energy sips from the love and the universe for a good four months now. Acccck. There are slight glimmers of good things on the horizon, though. For one, the lady in question is back on the meds that will make her more stable. Which will eventually free up enough cash and energy for me to go in to the doc and see what torture he next wants to inflict. At the very least I may go back on some hormone-balancing drugs, try to jumpstart my system into some kind of female functionality, at the very least a droplevel of the heavy hormones I'm dealing with now. So, that could be a good thing. In the meantime I'm still hanging on the the upper branch with my teeth, hoping not to fall.
I've spent a great bulk of my life trying to decide whether or not I'm insane. I ask this question with such urgency at times because I do desire blood. For me it's not the 'eroticism' of the vampire--though that's a nice bonus--or the desire to role-play one--I haven't, and I'm not truly interested in what White Wolf has to offer. And I've never been so mentally gone that I actually believe I'm 'immortal' and gifted with strange unearthly powers of transformation and enchantment. I'm all too mortal, believe me, and the only strange powers I have don't enchant people. No, for me it's more the real and actual desire to drink human blood.

I have drunk blood on occasion; 99% of the time it's been voluntary. I don't lurk in shadows unless it's bright out, I'm not a thin, ethereal wraithlike being, I don't dress constantly in black. And I also eat garlic, I don't fear crosses, I've touched holy water to my skin (a brief period of exploring Catholicism before I decided on the pagan path), and the only reason I have to fear sunlight is that I take St. John's Wort for depression, and it increases my already high photosensitivity. (Which is really annoying, because it makes getting my daily requirement of Vitamin D rather horrific.)

But there are interesting corollaries. I have one of the odder family histories around; I had an aunt in Oklahoma who swore she was a werewolf. There are rumors she was just schizophrenic, but as I never met her...And several of my ancestresses have been burned as witches, for either healing with herbal skills or consorting with supposed demons. On one side of my family, I'm related to Joan of Arc, she of the holy visions and crossdressing; on the other side, Henry the VIII and the rest of the rotten Tudor stock pop up, and they weren't exactly what you'd call pillars of stability. Insanity doesn't just run in my family; it gallops. Were we rich, most of the current crop would be termed 'charmingly eccentric'. As it is, most people just think we're nuts.

And there are interesting physical oddities, too. No, none of us were born with eleven toes or two heads, though my aunt and my mother's mother were both born with extra ribs, sprouting from the collarbone. And most of the women have reproductive problems--most of us don't produce progesterone at all, or have other related problems--and if you've been to other parts of the page, you already know I have a beard. But some of my family are highly allergic to any form of allicin, which is not only the active agent in garlic, but also all the other plants in the onion family. (I'm a garlic junkie, but I have problems with high acid-content foods and the occasional undercooked onion.) And we as a family are allergic to the sun. I used to think that was ridiculous--how can anyone be allergic to sunlight?? It's a star, we're on a planet--come on! But we are--my aunt broke out in hives when exposed, and I flash-burned in minutes before I started taking St. John's. (The interesting thing there is that it increases photosensitivity in animals; everything I've read says the effect doesn't extend to Homo sapiens. Go figure.)

And I will also admit, I'm a fairly morbid individual. If I could wear black most of the time I would, but it's not as flattering as I would like--brings out all the gold in my skin tone and really makes me look jaundiced. My favorite form of makeup--when I wear any at all--is a green concealer base under white rice powder, with black-outlined eyes and dark brown lips. I've scared people that way. And though no one, ever, will see me on the street and think, "Oh, there goes a Goth," that's been my desire since high school. I'd wear black lace and tattered velvet if I could afford it. I'd have coffins around the house. Hell, I already have a monopoly on decorating with bats--they're everywhere, along with skulls and roses and the odd string of Hallows lights here and there.

So where does the fetish for the dark leave off, and the vampire begin? I'm not even as sure as I once was, that this is just a variety of the psychological disease pica--because since I decided that, I moved from California to Colorado, and actually met other vampires. I mean, I still have problems looking in the mirror and saying, "I'm a vampire." Because it's all so surreal--vampires aren't real, they don't walk the streets of Denver, they don't go to parties and tickle their friends, they don't hunt madly for coffeehouses and play Gay Monopoly and Risk until the wee hours, while consuming coffee, tea and the odd slice of cheesecake. But there they were--mostly rational, fairly normal individuals who just 'happened' to also drink blood. Hmm. And here I am. And if I'm not a vampire...what am I?

And daily existance is so draining at times. I had an ideal job once, adored it--I got up at noon, got into work at three, worked until two in the morning, went home happy. I loved it. I haven't found a night job since, and there are days when it physically hurts to be out in the sun. This is, of course, discounting the whole St. John's Wort thing. I take St. John's for depression, as Paxil, the former chemical alternative I was taking, felt too artificial, if that makes any sense. Also, I'm deeply uneasy about Prozac. (Case in point--friend of mine takes it, and it works great for her. But she's a victim of multiple personality disorder. She has 80-odd people in one body, and on Prozac, she has three. So it works for her. But any drug that can do that scares me.)

But, on St. John's Wort, I must get an hour's worth of sunlight every day. Which is just about my limit, or over, some days. I sit and gripe and grumble for the half hour per day I usually get, then go home and slather my skin with aloe in the hopes the tenderness goes away. I am one of the few 'vampires' I know that actually has tanned skin--and I have a tan because of sun damage, over the years, on the face and the lower arms. It never goes away, and the rest of me is generally ice-pale in contrast, with prominent blue veining that unsettles me.

Mostly I'm an energy vamp, though--about every year or so, I get the need to drink actual blood, and it's strong, and it's unnerving, and let's just say I'm glad I'm married, because otherwise...My main problem is that my father died of AIDS, and as I've seen what it does, I'm pathologically afraid of drinking from those I don't trust. I'd be much more predatory, given half a chance. Instead, I've rather perfected the art of supping energy fields--or, if it gets out of hand, sapping them completely. Ergh. But there are few better things than going to a club playing heavy industrial music, and 'drinking' from the dancers on the floor...Of course, I had to move to Spokane, land of big hair and country music. Eep. And, it doesn't replace the taste, the satisfaction, of drinking blood itself.

For that matter, let's bring up blood-drinking for a moment. When I drink blood, I do feel better and stronger; when I don't, I feel more listless, less physically capable, and generally fatigued. But there are dozens of causes in my case for this--being overweight, having unbalanced hormones, having Poly-Cystic Ovarian Disorder...hell, being depressed fits in there, too. It might be the blood that makes me better; it might not. And there's no sure way to tell which right now.

There are days I relentlessly wish to be normal. Oh, yes, I'd still decorate in Muted Dead Rose, sure, but I wish I would stop going into heat, nearly, whenever some female around me is bleeding. I wish I could stop going straight for the neck whenever I'm getting passionate with someone. I wish I hadn't decided I was thoroughly insane in my twenties and went radically vegetarian--now, I don't even have my fangs anymore! Ground down through grazing and calcium deprivation. Joy.

I wish I could go out and enjoy a sunny day without being slathered in sunscreen that rarely works (the only ones I've ever found that does anything is NO-AD, in the higher numbers, Banana Boat's Baby Block, SPF 50 and Terra Sport; they're not perfect, but if you keep your exposure to a minumum...) or wrapped in sweaters or towels. I wish I didn't have to squint to see when I don't have sunglasses. I wish, on my bad days, I didn't walk down a city block and cause people to collapse behind me; that's not only rude, that's immoral, and usually I have better control, but...I wish. Oh, I wish.

In the meantime, this and the page following are the only answers I have right now. This page, with a few scant links, deals with 'real-life' vampires. The next page is just for fun, with links to vampire fan pages, some gothic pages, and a scant few role-playing pages. (Save for these notable exceptions, I've tried to avoid all the White Wolf/Vampire: the Masquerade claptrap; the exceptions are due to the clan I actually find entertaining to read about, the Malkavians [insanity gallops there, too]. [I'm also intrigued by the Tzimisce, but just try to find an info page on them that hasn't been recently shut down by someone, or whose proprietor hasn't vanished off the face of the earth.] Whee. But in general I don't go for more than the costuming angle on the Masquerade; I view it kind of like D&D--I used to play it, loved the game and the idea of roleplaying, but I met far too many complete smegheads who thought they were elves or magic-users or Great Warriors [and let's not even get into all the geeks in Sacramento at one time, saying in unison "There can be only ONE!" Yeah, right] to really feel comfortable in the various settings. Same thing with VtM: Love the clothes, love the settings, but I get too irritated with the geeks who want you to bow before their 17-year-old clueless faces and 'respect' them as Great Vampire Elders...No, really, EVERYONE gets into the elevator when the doors open, I don't care WHO the hell you think you are right now...)

So, here are the more-or-less 'helpful' pages--at least, the ones I could find right now. Hopefully, I'll have more later.

And the December 2000 entry--think I'm turning this into an archive:

December: 2000: Someone asked me this question: "What does vampirism mean to you?"

What it used to mean: feeling that I've gone insane. My wanting blood was something I absolutely could not explain except for vague and upsetting medicalia, such as porphyria (for which I had no other symptoms), pica (for which I also had no other symptoms) and obsessive-compulsive disorder (for which I'm practically a walking textbook of simptoms, disturbingly enough). Even having a goddess stomping about in the back of my head didn't interfere with my ability to reason, yet wanting blood, wanting to drink blood, and feeling better when I did...it completely threw me off kilter. "Normal" people don't need blood. Therefore I'm abnormal. And if I'm abnormal, shouldn't I be locked away somewhere in order to save the society at large?

Now: I've relaxed a lot. For one thing, I've come to terms with my OCD. It could be worse--I could be a compulsive hand-washer. In my case I'm more on the obsessive side, which means being tormented by thoughts of what one could do, given the opportunity. I have convinced myself that without good provocation, I wouldn't do half the things my brain obsesses over, and therefore can reasonably ignore them. For the rest of it, I mostly just get anxious on occasion and I keep St. John's around for that. And I count the occasional tiles and cracks in flooring, and I've cornered that into Things That Are Only Done When I'm Alone, which has worked out wonderfully. And along the way of learning to cope with those personality facets, suddenly wanting blood became no big deal. There are still people I don't tell--I really don't want to be locked up, so why make them worry about me--but for the most part, enough of my friends and close ones know to make me a little easier about who I choose to be.

So what does vampirism mean to me? Part of it is, it means I'm a little bit more than the average of humanity around me. Better? No, it's a highly inefficient design, needing blood and life energy to exist, or suffering because of the lack. But I am more than just the body I'm in, I need more, I process differently, I'm slightly larger than life. (Well, actually, [staring fixedly at hips and belly], I'm LITERALLY larger than life, but we won't go there).

It means my life and my magic and my psychology all get wrapped around the issues of blood and energy, as opposed to simply concentrating blissfully on a higher power to take it all away and give me blessings. I am my higher power. I'm still vaguely frightened by the inherent responsibilities in that, but I hold to it. And vampirism supports me in this. When I ingest another's blood, I become them--not only their cells joining my cells, my body absorbing their unique genetic structure, but also, their energy becomes mine, part of their being joins me. When I feed someone, I am joined with them in a way that transcends most other experiences I can think of. This is the true nature of communion--soul to soul, being in each others' skins, existing inside each other. For that moment there is no difference between us, we are the same, the boundaries dissolve. In that I find truth.


End of original essay...

the poem
the first history
the second history
back to blood and coffee

Write me

All material originally copyrighted 1997; updated copyright 2000, 2002 to Kelandris the Mad, and to their original creators. No copyright violation is intended nor is there intent to infringe on held rights of any person's. Should anything so infringe, please contact me at the address given above and I will remove it from my page.