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Scaly Freak Weaponizes Acceptance (again)


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Scalyfreak is not hiding in her bunker. Despite what Self-Sabotage was alluding to in her whispered accusation, this time, Scalyfreak actually is not hiding or avoiding anything. She's visiting the bunker to do laundry, because what is the point of having a completely secure base you can teleport into, if you're not going to take advantage of the benefits it offers? Like the wash tub with embedded runes that heat water to desired temperature, and is large enough to hold a person, or a large pile of dirty clothes.

 

Fighting is hungry and thirsty work, as the cliché goes, and not for the first Scalyfreak wonders why no one ever comments on what a drawn-out battle with a demon does to clothing, and not with regards to blood stains (those go on the armor), but the sweat... good grief, the sweat. Thick with stress hormones and fear, trapped underneath armor and gambeson, warmed by body heat and thickening from exertion... Scalyfreak pauses for a moment to bury her nose in the sachet hanging around her neck, and inhales deeply of the lavender, mint, and rosemary leaves collected specifically for this purpose. The herbs don't remove the stench of the dirty laundry she needs to pick up and push into the hot water in a moment, but they do make the chore of washing very stinky laundry more tolerable and considerably less nauseating.

 

Scalyfreak resolves, firmly, to pack at most two clean changes of underclothes when she leaves the bunker tomorrow. That will force her to return to the bunker and do laundry a lot sooner, and should prevent the small bag for dirty laundry from turning into some kind of alchemical nightmare of toxic fumes.

 

While poking through the pile of stinking laundry with the long paddle she uses to stir and lift laundry, Scalyfreak pokes around in search of the shirt she wore when she battled Self-Sabotage, a day or so before she found the small Temple or Iron. The ugly beast deflects damage and every wound Scalyfreak deals the demon bites into her own skin underneath the armor, because of course they do. These cuts always heal as soon as the she-demon departs, but not before bleeding profusely and and creating a need to soak the shirt in question in cold water before attempting to clean it.

 

Except... there is no blood this time. Puzzled, Scalyfreak lifts the herb sachet to her nose to cover the stench, and begins to poke and lift the other two shirts in earnest, only to discover a complete lack of blood stains on them as well. Strange.

 

Since there is no need for soaking anything, Scalyfreak piles her dirty laundry into the wash tub and waves her hand over it twice. While the tub fills with hot water, Scalyfreak thinks back on the last few times she has faced Self-Sabotage. The creature appears to have grown smaller, but that is not unusual. Scalyfreak is used to seeing her demons diminish in size as her own abilities grow. But the lack of blood suggests that something else has changed.

 

“Was I not bleeding from any cuts...? At all?”

 

If Self-Sabotage has lost the ability to turn the damage from Scalyfreak's attacks back against her, that changes everything, and it solves the riddle of why the powerful demon vanishes as soon as it is hit. It means Self-Sabotage can be hurt.

 

MCguSE0.png 

Before anything else, here is a short intro about me, because assuming everyone understands my strange imagery would be a bit delusional. :) 

 

Spoiler

I cheerfully approach all my challenges as video game quests, with boss fights and level grinding, I have re-framed my anxiety into pyromancy, because it's very destructive when it flares up and gets out of control. But like the pyromancy flame, if the chaos is embraced and can be harnessed, all that energy can be used against against my enemies. In fireball form.

 

I don't really have a good track record in my boss fights so far:

 

  • Self-Sabotage drains levels and health, and heals herself with what she drains from her opponent. She appears to have lost the ability to reflect damage back on me, which is a positive development.
    • Current strategy: Run and hide and hope she won't find me (but she always does).
  • Procrastination is good at hiding and then hitting me with a back-stab when I least expect it.
    • Current strategy: Ignore; deal with her later.
  • Stress-Hydra spawns whenever too many things are happening at once, or when something really big and overwhelming happens, and cutting off one of her heads makes no difference because it re-spawns a replacement head almost immediately.
    • Current strategy: The tried and true Herakles method of asking a trusted friend to help
  • DEAD Self-Indulgence was gradually convinced it would be easier for her to reach her goal if we worked together. Before the alliance fell apart on its own, Self-Indulgence was viciously attacked, and killed, by a very angry unicorn.
    • Current strategy: Dance on her grave

 

I'm currently dual-classing as a Warrior Druid, because meditation is a great way to quietly build Endurance and Resilience stats while figuring out how to make my need for sleep work with my need to go to the gym and lift barbells.

 

Outside NerdFitness I spend most of my time with Husband and our pets, Mellow Sidekick and Happy Sidekick.

 

So here we are in 2022. Last year, in time for the first challenge of 2021, I had just realized that there is no point in railing against the unfairness that is reality, no matter how much it sucks, because reality simply will not change to conform to my wishes (even though it should). All of that mental energy is much better spent on learning how to deal with my current reality, and finding constructive ways to keep The Flame at a low simmer while looking after my physical health. To this end, this challenge we are going to go back to basics again.

 

My very first challenge of 2021 was about weaponizing acceptance, so I'm going to go back to that and split the challenge into the three “resource bars” that almost every video game relies on. And we are keeping it simple, because laying a stable foundation matters.

 

Build HP (physical health)

This stands for physical health. and has two components: The first is to go to the gym and lift things, and the second is to go. This bar will be regenerated by going for a walk every day unless the weather interferes.

 

Restore Mana (mental health)

Make sure I meditate every day. Ideally this will be done in the morning before I go to work, on days when I work, but it needs to happen on non-work days as well. I also need remember to take a break to be mindful and breathe when work becomes too demanding.

 

Build stamina (fortify emotional bandwidth)

This is a bit more tricky, but can be done. I'm going to fall back on proven emotional fortification techniques from the past, in the form of reading books, playing video games, cooking food, listening to music, playing with makeup, spending time with Husband and our Sidekicks. Essentially, do things that make me happy and feel good.

 

And that is it. Let the challenging begin!

  • Like 10
  • That's Metal 5

Reading Challenge Thread 2022

“I've always believed that failure is non-existent. What is failure? You go to the end of the season, then you lose the Super Bowl. Is that failing? To most people, maybe. But when you're picking apart why you failed, and now you're learning from that, then is that really failing? I don't think so." - Kobe Bryant, 1978-2020. Rest in peace, great warrior.

Personal Challenges, a.k.a.The Saga of Scalyfreak: Tutorial; Ch 1; Ch 2; Ch 3; Ch 4; Ch 5; Ch 6; Intermission; Intermission II; Ch 7; Ch 8; Ch 9; Ch 10; Ch 11; Ch 12 ; Ch 13; Ch 14Ch 15; Ch 16; Ch 17; Intermission IIICh 18; Ch 19; Ch 20; Ch 21; Ch 22; Ch 23; Ch 24; Ch 25; Intermission IV; Ch 26; Ch 27; Ch 28; Ch 29; Ch 30; Ch 31; Ch 32; Ch 33; Ch 34; Ch 35; Ch 36; Ch 37; Ch 38

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8 hours ago, Scaly Freak said:

My very first challenge of 2021 was about weaponizing acceptance, so I'm going to go back to that and split the challenge into the three “resource bars” that almost every video game relies on. And we are keeping it simple, because laying a stable foundation matters.

 

Yes, let's accept the flip out of this year! I'm accepting it SO hard!!! Acceptance grenade! Acceptance nuke! Acceptance battering ram! Acceptance Grond!

 

8 hours ago, Scaly Freak said:

Build HP (physical health)

This stands for physical health, and has two components: The first is to go to the gym and lift things, and the second is to go for a walk every day unless the weather interferes.

 

Restore Mana (mental health)

Make sure I meditate every day. Ideally this will be done in the morning before I go to work, on days when I work, but it needs to happen on non-work days as well. I also need remember to take a break to be mindful and breathe when work becomes too demanding.

 

Build stamina (fortify emotional bandwidth)

This is a bit more tricky, but can be done. I'm going to fall back on proven emotional fortification techniques from the past, in the form of reading books, playing video games, cooking food, listening to music, playing with makeup, spending time with Husband and our Sidekicks. Essentially, do things that make me happy and feel good.

 

And that is it. Let the challenging begin!


Lifting and meditating is a winning combination, right? And doing nice stuff sounds, well, nice. I like that it's built in to your challenge so you don't forget it.

  • Like 3

Let cheese and oxen and mead crowd out our secret desires for power and domination - Harriet the Viking

Just be bold, fluid and unapologetic, not small, hairy and indecisive - Harriet the Artist

You can absorb me! - Harriet the Contextless Guru

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11 hours ago, KB Girl said:

It really should!

The resource bar analogy is great :) it's almost asking for a couple Zelda images, but that's probably just me. 

 

Inspired by the Dark Souls games, actually. (as usual ;) ) Those games use red for physical health, blue for mana and green for physical stamina, so I'm taking some liberties, but why not?

 

image.png.e864fea4b0feb72d3d0a9df3bd38e912.png

 

7 hours ago, Harriet said:

 

Yes, let's accept the flip out of this year! I'm accepting it SO hard!!! Acceptance grenade! Acceptance nuke! Acceptance battering ram! Acceptance Grond!

 

I'm going more for fire balls of acceptance, but Grond never disappoints.

 

32 minutes ago, Alanna said:

I really like how you've framed your goals - framing them as contributing to resource bars really emphasises the "why" behind them. Starting off 2022 by rebuilding your resources is a great plan, too! 

 

Self-care makes more sense to me when I think of it as "system maintenance". This seemed like a logical extension of that approach. :) 

 

  • Like 6

Reading Challenge Thread 2022

“I've always believed that failure is non-existent. What is failure? You go to the end of the season, then you lose the Super Bowl. Is that failing? To most people, maybe. But when you're picking apart why you failed, and now you're learning from that, then is that really failing? I don't think so." - Kobe Bryant, 1978-2020. Rest in peace, great warrior.

Personal Challenges, a.k.a.The Saga of Scalyfreak: Tutorial; Ch 1; Ch 2; Ch 3; Ch 4; Ch 5; Ch 6; Intermission; Intermission II; Ch 7; Ch 8; Ch 9; Ch 10; Ch 11; Ch 12 ; Ch 13; Ch 14Ch 15; Ch 16; Ch 17; Intermission IIICh 18; Ch 19; Ch 20; Ch 21; Ch 22; Ch 23; Ch 24; Ch 25; Intermission IV; Ch 26; Ch 27; Ch 28; Ch 29; Ch 30; Ch 31; Ch 32; Ch 33; Ch 34; Ch 35; Ch 36; Ch 37; Ch 38

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10 minutes ago, Scaly Freak said:

Inspired by the Dark Souls games, actually. (as usual ;) ) Those games use red for physical health, blue for mana and green for physical stamina, so I'm taking some liberties, but why not?

 

 

I should have recognised it - my husband is sitting next to me playing Dark Souls 3 right now!

  • That's Metal 1

-:- THE LIONESS -:-

Challenge 2.1, 2.2, 2.3, 2.4, 2.5, 2.6, 2.7, 2.8 

 

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15 minutes ago, Alanna said:

 

I should have recognised it - my husband is sitting next to me playing Dark Souls 3 right now!

 

He has excellent taste in games. Reframing my anxiety as pyromancy/fire is heavily inspired by those games. Pyromancy in the Souls setting is based on strong emotions, and there is a persistent theme in the setting lore of fire as both the giver of life and the destroyer of it. :) 

  • Like 1

Reading Challenge Thread 2022

“I've always believed that failure is non-existent. What is failure? You go to the end of the season, then you lose the Super Bowl. Is that failing? To most people, maybe. But when you're picking apart why you failed, and now you're learning from that, then is that really failing? I don't think so." - Kobe Bryant, 1978-2020. Rest in peace, great warrior.

Personal Challenges, a.k.a.The Saga of Scalyfreak: Tutorial; Ch 1; Ch 2; Ch 3; Ch 4; Ch 5; Ch 6; Intermission; Intermission II; Ch 7; Ch 8; Ch 9; Ch 10; Ch 11; Ch 12 ; Ch 13; Ch 14Ch 15; Ch 16; Ch 17; Intermission IIICh 18; Ch 19; Ch 20; Ch 21; Ch 22; Ch 23; Ch 24; Ch 25; Intermission IV; Ch 26; Ch 27; Ch 28; Ch 29; Ch 30; Ch 31; Ch 32; Ch 33; Ch 34; Ch 35; Ch 36; Ch 37; Ch 38

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On 12/31/2021 at 5:07 AM, Scaly Freak said:

because reality simply will not change to conform to my wishes (even though it should)

I need to be reminded this time and time again. No matter how much I think I have it ingrained in my being, I keep being surprised and having to remind myself. It sure should! But it indeed won't. Glad your communig with the iron again, even if that means washing clothes gets pushed into hard mode. xD

 

On 12/31/2021 at 9:19 PM, Scaly Freak said:

Inspired by the Dark Souls games, actually. (as usual ;) ) Those games use red for physical health, blue for mana and green for physical stamina, so I'm taking some liberties, but why not?

I like Grim Dawn's Constitution bar/overlay: as long as it's not empty, it's used to regenerate your HP very quickly while out of fight. When it's depleted, you loose this ability and won't regenerate HP anymore. Very fitting for the way I feel life.

 

That being said, I'll be following from a distance. Rooting for you, you've got this.

 

giphy.gif

 

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Legally bound to hug people in need.

 

Living life as a Druid is about walking with the beasts. It's about being scared, looking your fears in the eyes and going on anyway. Dread doesn't go away, you just learn to know it. It's still a beast, it still has fangs, but you walk among it.

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It is the evening of the first day of the challenge. I have meditated, and walked with Happy Sidekick,  and I am about to check off the third goal by joining the library district's Reading Challenge Kick-off event online any minute now. Off to a good start!

  • Like 8

Reading Challenge Thread 2022

“I've always believed that failure is non-existent. What is failure? You go to the end of the season, then you lose the Super Bowl. Is that failing? To most people, maybe. But when you're picking apart why you failed, and now you're learning from that, then is that really failing? I don't think so." - Kobe Bryant, 1978-2020. Rest in peace, great warrior.

Personal Challenges, a.k.a.The Saga of Scalyfreak: Tutorial; Ch 1; Ch 2; Ch 3; Ch 4; Ch 5; Ch 6; Intermission; Intermission II; Ch 7; Ch 8; Ch 9; Ch 10; Ch 11; Ch 12 ; Ch 13; Ch 14Ch 15; Ch 16; Ch 17; Intermission IIICh 18; Ch 19; Ch 20; Ch 21; Ch 22; Ch 23; Ch 24; Ch 25; Intermission IV; Ch 26; Ch 27; Ch 28; Ch 29; Ch 30; Ch 31; Ch 32; Ch 33; Ch 34; Ch 35; Ch 36; Ch 37; Ch 38

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6 minutes ago, Alanna said:

 

That's really cool that they organise events like this! How many people are participating in the challenge?

 

The library Facebook group has a few dozen members who say they are going to participate, but to my knowledge the library district doesn't share participation numbers. I'm mildly curious if the new software platform will do that, but we'll see. 

  • Like 1

Reading Challenge Thread 2022

“I've always believed that failure is non-existent. What is failure? You go to the end of the season, then you lose the Super Bowl. Is that failing? To most people, maybe. But when you're picking apart why you failed, and now you're learning from that, then is that really failing? I don't think so." - Kobe Bryant, 1978-2020. Rest in peace, great warrior.

Personal Challenges, a.k.a.The Saga of Scalyfreak: Tutorial; Ch 1; Ch 2; Ch 3; Ch 4; Ch 5; Ch 6; Intermission; Intermission II; Ch 7; Ch 8; Ch 9; Ch 10; Ch 11; Ch 12 ; Ch 13; Ch 14Ch 15; Ch 16; Ch 17; Intermission IIICh 18; Ch 19; Ch 20; Ch 21; Ch 22; Ch 23; Ch 24; Ch 25; Intermission IV; Ch 26; Ch 27; Ch 28; Ch 29; Ch 30; Ch 31; Ch 32; Ch 33; Ch 34; Ch 35; Ch 36; Ch 37; Ch 38

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6 minutes ago, KB Girl said:

Excellent start :) 

Is it similar to the last reading challenge they did?

 

Yes, they do an Extreme Book Nerd challenge every year, and to my knowledge the same format and rules stay the same from year to year. The 50 categories change, and vary from being obscurely difficult to being ridiculously easy to meet, presumably for variety.

  • Like 1

Reading Challenge Thread 2022

“I've always believed that failure is non-existent. What is failure? You go to the end of the season, then you lose the Super Bowl. Is that failing? To most people, maybe. But when you're picking apart why you failed, and now you're learning from that, then is that really failing? I don't think so." - Kobe Bryant, 1978-2020. Rest in peace, great warrior.

Personal Challenges, a.k.a.The Saga of Scalyfreak: Tutorial; Ch 1; Ch 2; Ch 3; Ch 4; Ch 5; Ch 6; Intermission; Intermission II; Ch 7; Ch 8; Ch 9; Ch 10; Ch 11; Ch 12 ; Ch 13; Ch 14Ch 15; Ch 16; Ch 17; Intermission IIICh 18; Ch 19; Ch 20; Ch 21; Ch 22; Ch 23; Ch 24; Ch 25; Intermission IV; Ch 26; Ch 27; Ch 28; Ch 29; Ch 30; Ch 31; Ch 32; Ch 33; Ch 34; Ch 35; Ch 36; Ch 37; Ch 38

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1 hour ago, Scaly Freak said:

 

Yes, they do an Extreme Book Nerd challenge every year, and to my knowledge the same format and rules stay the same from year to year. The 50 categories change, and vary from being obscurely difficult to being ridiculously easy to meet, presumably for variety.

 

Love it, it sounds like a cool challenge. :) 

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2 hours ago, Jupiter said:

 

Love it, it sounds like a cool challenge. :) 

 

It is. I intend to try and track my challenge progress in the reading thread for accountability this year. I am cautiously optimistic that will help, plus it will make it easier for me to ask for help finding books for some of the categories.

 

1 hour ago, Mistr said:

Excellent goals. Also extremely good progress in dealing with Self-sabotage.

 

Thank you. :) 

 

It's a good feeling to be able to stop The Flame from sending my brain into "nothing matters anyway so why even try"-mode when things become too much for me. It took me a while to realize it, but now that I know I can, learning how to become better at it is my current meditation goal.

  • Like 5

Reading Challenge Thread 2022

“I've always believed that failure is non-existent. What is failure? You go to the end of the season, then you lose the Super Bowl. Is that failing? To most people, maybe. But when you're picking apart why you failed, and now you're learning from that, then is that really failing? I don't think so." - Kobe Bryant, 1978-2020. Rest in peace, great warrior.

Personal Challenges, a.k.a.The Saga of Scalyfreak: Tutorial; Ch 1; Ch 2; Ch 3; Ch 4; Ch 5; Ch 6; Intermission; Intermission II; Ch 7; Ch 8; Ch 9; Ch 10; Ch 11; Ch 12 ; Ch 13; Ch 14Ch 15; Ch 16; Ch 17; Intermission IIICh 18; Ch 19; Ch 20; Ch 21; Ch 22; Ch 23; Ch 24; Ch 25; Intermission IV; Ch 26; Ch 27; Ch 28; Ch 29; Ch 30; Ch 31; Ch 32; Ch 33; Ch 34; Ch 35; Ch 36; Ch 37; Ch 38

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On 1/4/2022 at 2:00 AM, Scaly Freak said:

It is the evening of the first day of the challenge. I have meditated, and walked with Happy Sidekick,  and I am about to check off the third goal by joining the library district's Reading Challenge Kick-off event online any minute now. Off to a good start!


Lookin good. Lifting today?

Let cheese and oxen and mead crowd out our secret desires for power and domination - Harriet the Viking

Just be bold, fluid and unapologetic, not small, hairy and indecisive - Harriet the Artist

You can absorb me! - Harriet the Contextless Guru

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21 minutes ago, Harriet said:


Lookin good. Lifting today?

 

Hopefully. It is the first week in January, and there is distinct possibility the gym could be filled with the potentially Infected, to the point it becomes impossible to set foot in there while staying at a safe distance. If that happens, there will be no lifting. But the plan is to travel to the gym and make an attempt at least. :) 

  • Like 4

Reading Challenge Thread 2022

“I've always believed that failure is non-existent. What is failure? You go to the end of the season, then you lose the Super Bowl. Is that failing? To most people, maybe. But when you're picking apart why you failed, and now you're learning from that, then is that really failing? I don't think so." - Kobe Bryant, 1978-2020. Rest in peace, great warrior.

Personal Challenges, a.k.a.The Saga of Scalyfreak: Tutorial; Ch 1; Ch 2; Ch 3; Ch 4; Ch 5; Ch 6; Intermission; Intermission II; Ch 7; Ch 8; Ch 9; Ch 10; Ch 11; Ch 12 ; Ch 13; Ch 14Ch 15; Ch 16; Ch 17; Intermission IIICh 18; Ch 19; Ch 20; Ch 21; Ch 22; Ch 23; Ch 24; Ch 25; Intermission IV; Ch 26; Ch 27; Ch 28; Ch 29; Ch 30; Ch 31; Ch 32; Ch 33; Ch 34; Ch 35; Ch 36; Ch 37; Ch 38

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21 minutes ago, Scaly Freak said:

 

Hopefully. It is the first week in January, and there is distinct possibility the gym could be filled with the potentially Infected, to the point it becomes impossible to set foot in there while staying at a safe distance. If that happens, there will be no lifting. But the plan is to travel to the gym and make an attempt at least. :) 

 

Oh yeah. The gym had more people than usual on Tuesday, and some of them were new, I could see. I shouldn't wish for them to give up and go back to watching netflix, but... the squat rack is mine.

  • Haha 4
  • That's Metal 1

Let cheese and oxen and mead crowd out our secret desires for power and domination - Harriet the Viking

Just be bold, fluid and unapologetic, not small, hairy and indecisive - Harriet the Artist

You can absorb me! - Harriet the Contextless Guru

Link to comment
43 minutes ago, Harriet said:

 

Oh yeah. The gym had more people than usual on Tuesday, and some of them were new, I could see. I shouldn't wish for them to give up and go back to watching netflix, but... the squat rack is mine.

 

I understand this feeling. Few things are as frustrating as arriving at a nearly empty gym and discovering that the only other person in there is using my squat rack.

  • Like 4

Reading Challenge Thread 2022

“I've always believed that failure is non-existent. What is failure? You go to the end of the season, then you lose the Super Bowl. Is that failing? To most people, maybe. But when you're picking apart why you failed, and now you're learning from that, then is that really failing? I don't think so." - Kobe Bryant, 1978-2020. Rest in peace, great warrior.

Personal Challenges, a.k.a.The Saga of Scalyfreak: Tutorial; Ch 1; Ch 2; Ch 3; Ch 4; Ch 5; Ch 6; Intermission; Intermission II; Ch 7; Ch 8; Ch 9; Ch 10; Ch 11; Ch 12 ; Ch 13; Ch 14Ch 15; Ch 16; Ch 17; Intermission IIICh 18; Ch 19; Ch 20; Ch 21; Ch 22; Ch 23; Ch 24; Ch 25; Intermission IV; Ch 26; Ch 27; Ch 28; Ch 29; Ch 30; Ch 31; Ch 32; Ch 33; Ch 34; Ch 35; Ch 36; Ch 37; Ch 38

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