Are You Sure?

“Are you sure he’s not just confused?”

“It’s funny that your kid came out as trans and then the rest of the family followed suit.”

These are a couple of paraphrased comments that a few people have made regarding my family. I get it. It’s unusual to see a family with both parents and a child who are all transgender. As one person who made one of the above comments later put it, “Well, it’s none of anyone’s business, anyway.” She was just confused about how it happened like that and had felt comfortable asking.

The truth of the matter is, we can’t explain how it worked out that way. It’s the luck of the draw and I guess my family is special like that (insert awkward laughter). One thing that I want to set straight, first and foremost, is that my wife and I weren’t out yet as transgender when our child came out to us. Although we knew about each other, we were afraid that coming out could negatively affect our kid. Society had led us to believe that it was better to continue pretending to be a cis-het couple, masquerading as the genders we were assigned at birth.

It was when the kiddo, a pre-teen at the time, came out as trans that we realized we were being hypocrites. All of the times we’d told our child to be theirself and to accept others, we weren’t being true to ourselves. What would it teach our kid if they found out we’d been staying in the closet the entire time? Even worse, what would it say about us if we didn’t accept them as they are?

So, no, we didn’t somehow confuse our child and we definitely didn’t push it on them. In fact, we were scared for our child when they came out to us. I didn’t want to believe it, because I know that it’s not easy. I know that transgender youth are more likely to attempt suicide without gender affirming care, and that getting such care isn’t an easy process even for adults. The bullies and fascists that exist in society who push transphobia make it even more difficult. It’s unfortunate that the times we are living in are rife with ignorance and hatred toward the transgender community. I’m not sure if I know how to protect my child from that while still allowing them to explore their identity and be theirself. But, I have to try because I won’t allow my teenager to become another statistic.

As scared as I am for my child’s future, I want them to be happy and comfortable with who they are. I don’t want my kid trying to play a role in society that feels wrong to them. There will be those who don’t understand. There will be those who make assumptions. But we will love and accept our teen for whoever they grow to be.


New Username

Although I do not currently have plans to change the blog name, some may notice (if you pay attention to such things) that my username has changed. Instead of B. Alvinia, it is now B. Ælfbear. I believe my old posts will still have the old username attached.

Further, my art page names have been changed from “Art by Alvinia” to “Ælfbear Art”. Redbubble won’t allow usernames to be changed, so that will still say “AlviniaBear” over there, although I was able to change the collection name. I have updated links on the “About Me” page to reflect these changes.

Drawing Out Harmful Energy

I was once taught a working by The Morrígan in the Dreaming. As far as I am aware, there is nothing in the lore to support Her connection to this and thus it should be considered as UPG. I had debated whether to share for a while now, as I felt a call to do so, but wanted to wait a while to see if that feeling persisted. It has. I have since heard of similar forms of magic, so can not claim that this is something new.

To begin, I will share the dream.
There was a man who was infected with a malicious spirit. This could be interpreted either as illness or as a harmful energy or spiritual possession. I was led by The Morrígan to lay my hands on the man and breathe in the infection. As I breathed it in, so it was drawn out of the host.
The next steps were crucial. After the spirit or illness was removed, I had to go outside and release it by breathing it out of myself. I made a mistake and so it was free to find a new host.

After some meditation on the dream, I realized that I was supposed to have released it into the earth. The earth would then act as a filter. At the same time, there was a sense that this must be done carefully, as not to cause harm to the land in some way.

I feel that ritual or meditative components can be added to this work to ensure greater success. I am personally drawn to the use of water or fire (in visualization or as a tool) to act as a cleansing agent when releasing the unwanted energies.

Disclaimer: The above information is not meant to be medical advice. Any medical issues should be treated by a licensed physician if possible.


If anyone’s interested in reading my fiction, I’m finally starting to post on Ao3, Tumblr, and Wattpad. To be fair, I posted the first chapter to the latter two a while back, and promptly got sidetracked with life.

Why am I not just posting my stories to this here WordPress, you ask? I suppose it’s a form of experimentation. I’m trying to see where my stuff will be read. Honestly, I’d also prefer my fiction be kept separate from this blog, anyway.

Les Langues…

I find it interesting how you can take something written in two languages and have both versions translated into a third language, and the new translations won’t match up exactly word-for-word despite being written in the same language. It’s a good reminder that languages are more complex than “this word means that word”. Differing languages have different ways of phrasing things (grammar rules, phrases, etc), so language learners have to learn to translate meaning alongside the words themselves.

I’ve been using Duolingo off and on for several years. If you’re not familiar with it, Duolingo is a free language learning app. I love and highly recommend it. (Disclaimer: This is not a paid promotion and I am not affiliated with the company. I really just love the app.)
This app, however, is not a replacement for other language learning sources. I imagine that I’d be farther along in my quest for French fluency if I used other sources more, even despite the breaks I’ve taken.
I have no foreseeable plans to visit a French speaking country, much as I would love to, nor do I have a career wherein being bilingual would be particularly useful. Learning languages is simply a fun interest of mine. I started with Français parce que it was the foreign language class that I took in high school. I already had some basic experience with it.
Je peux a peu parle en Français, mais je ne sais pas beaucoup. My grammar still has much improvement to be made, as does my vocabulary. I’m better reading and writing basic things in French than I am at speaking or understanding the spoken language.

I also started a couple of other languages that I would love to learn more of, but decided to take a break to focus on improving my French. Je peux dire comme des choses, “Dia duit. Connas ata tu? Is bean me. Ta an fear agam,” en irlandaise. Je peux aussi dire comme des choses, “Jeg er en kvinne. Jeg har et barn. Jeg spiser et eple,” en Norvégien. Mais, despite not being more adept in French yet, I know quite a lot more in that language so far.

Circling back around to learning to understand the meaning alongside the words, I have a hope that eventually I will find a better grasp of this as I continue learning. I think it will be interesting to compare the differences between various languages.

In Memory…

11 years ago today, I lost my dad. His wake and burial was on Halloween. It took time, but I was finally able to enjoy Halloween again. I don’t randomly cry every year on this day anymore. I was able to find closure and forgiveness for him.
I will never forget the harm he put me through, but he is gone now and he /had/ started to do better in his last few years. I try to keep the good memories in mind – the days fishing, hunting, shooting practice in the woods; the times we spoke about spirtuality and other things after he got sober.

b.AM Muses

(*Re-posted from an older blog.) Trigger warning: Death.

October 27, 2008. That was 8 years ago today.

I had found myself in the Underworld. What else could I call this place, at the time? The place where the dead dwell reminded me of autumn, like the world of the living currently was in the Northern Hemisphere where I lived. That wasn’t important. What was important was that I needed to find my way home. And so, I did. I walked until I found a ladder that reached higher than I could see and I climbed until a bright light broke through at the top.

Just as I was passing through the light in this dream, my mother was in a frantic state trying to wake me up. My father had been home from the hospital for about a month, paralyzed from a stroke, unable to care for himself any longer…

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Can We Knock That Pedestal Down?

TW: Mentions of abuse, some offensive language.

Want to know a pet peeve of mine? People who insinuate that, because someone is Christian, that makes them “good” and “trustworthy”. It’s usually said something like, “He’s a good, Christian man. He would never do anything like that.” You know, because there have totally never been a case of abusers and sexual offenders in Christian churches. Let’s just sweep all that under the rug, hun.
I’m not ragging on Christians as a whole. There are a lot of good people who are Christian. But for the love of gods, can people please stop acting like belonging to that particular religion makes them more trustworthy than everyone else? Not only is it wrong, it is both dangerous and offensive.
How? For one thing, people let their guards down based on someone’s religion. Somehow, it lets them put on blinders that make them incapable of seeing the possibility of someone being a potential threat. That’s how we have preachers who beat their wives and do unspeakable things to their children. That’s how parents force their underage daughter to marry her rapist (statutory or otherwise) so the baby she’s now pregnant with won’t be a bastard. That’s how people of minority religions get threatened, ostracized, harassed, so on and so forth. Some of which is illegal, but sometimes overlooked when it happens.

When the claim is made that being Christian, by default, means someone is “good” and “right”, that places everyone else automatically in the “bad” or “wrong” category. Yes, that is offensive. It can lead to discrimination, such as what Jewish and Islamic peoples have historically faced due to their religions. It can lead to using others as a scapegoat or otherwise preventing them from fair treatment. It means placing someone up on a pedestal for the very virtue of which god they believe in and whether they go to an “acceptable” church.

Don’t get me wrong: It’s not just Christians who have their share of crooks, abusers, and general assholes. Every group has them. Oh boy, the Pagan community is rife with issues that need addressed yesterday. The difference, in the culture we in the US live in, is that Christians benefit from a privilege that people of no other faith experience. There are so many that it’s not difficult to find a new church, to talk with someone who will agree at least on basic religious beliefs, to have the support one needs to convince themselves of the lie that being Christian is enough to make them “good”.
The truth of the matter is, you either have a decent moral compass or you don’t. The god you worship or church you attend isn’t going to change that.

Want to convince me someone is a good person? You’d better have more to go on than telling me that they’re Christian. I will laugh you out the door with that bullshit and just might even trust your judgement a little less.

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Like A Candle

Try not to focus on the bad, I tell myself. Focus on the bright side and get through the day, I urge myself. Try as I might, dealing with depression and anxiety can make it more difficult.
I work at a call center taking inbound calls. That’s all I will say right now about the where or what exactly I do. The job itself is relatively easy if you know what you’re doing. I love the people I work with and can deal well enough with the negative aspects brought about by management. The people calling in, though? Oh, they can be a whole other story. The complaints and venting, while often understandable, can be enough to wear a person down when hearing it all day, day after day. Then you have the ones yelling, using profanity, making threats, and attempting to manipulate employees. That can be worse on an employee’s mental health. To be honest, my view of humanity has lessened in the couple of years that I’ve worked this job. An employee can only do so much. People having an attitude, playing guilt-cards, yelling, and generally being an asshole does not make it any easier to help them.

I’m not in a situation where I can afford to “just quit”. On top of that, finding a new job is more difficult than some people pretend. I am glad that I do have a job in this economy. It even pays above minimum wage! A lesser paying job wouldn’t be worth the risk of a career change. But, I know that I’m dealing with burn out and can not sustain this.
I’ve gotten to the point where I can’t even answer the phone while home. It makes me too anxious. I am more critical toward others and less patient with what I interpret as disrespectful attitudes. Even on my good days, I often have to talk myself into going to work. When I am already having a bad mental health day, going into work is often more likely to worsen my state of mind than distract me.

When I first started the job, I was excited. It was a new start with better opportunities. I knew it wasn’t my dream career, but it was something. Like a candle, however, that flame quickly burned down. The financial need and occasional respectful customer that I assist keeps me going more than anything. They’re not ALL jerks and I genuinely enjoy helping people who are kind.

I know people get upset when something doesn’t work out the way they want. We all do. However, there should be some basic rules that everyone follows when calling or visiting a company for any reason. It all sums up to “don’t be an asshole”:
~Do not make insults or use profanity in anger.
~Do not yell or scream.
~Do not use mocking tones or sarcasm to express your anger.
~Do not ask questions or make statements that only serve to play on guilt, purposely upset, or otherwise manipulate an employee.
~Remember that employees are just that: They have rules to follow, limitations to what they can do, etc. Don’t treat them like they’re the head honchos or the cause of your problems just because they’re representing the company during their shift.
~Treating employees how you want to be treated goes a long way.

Everyone makes the choice as to how they will speak to or otherwise treat someone. It’s not difficult to show basic respect – especially toward someone who is there to help you however they can.

All-County Chorus Day! (or A Day in the Life)


For a blogger, I feel like I don’t post much about the daily life. These sorts of posts are a thing, right? I think so. Here we go. (Don’t worry: I don’t intend on doing this every day!)
My child was chosen for the All-County Chorus, which happens to be today! Counting today’s rehearsal, they’ve only had three in total. Not too bad for a working parent to manage.

Of course, I have had to request days off so that I could take them. Workforce can be a pain to deal with. Even when the supervisor approves it, workforce often falls behind and we employees have to be vigilant enough to catch scheduling screw ups and bring them to the attention of our supervisor. If the schedule isn’t fixed for the requested day, that can put us in a less favorable position of having to call out.
I often feel like my desire to put parental responsibilities before work can come across as a poor work ethic. What can I say to defend that to someone who thinks kids should come second in a parent’s life? (AKA: People who should never have kids!) We working parents sacrifice enough the way it is just so that we can provide for our kids. What’s a few days off once in a while?

Back to the day in the life theme, this is my today: I dropped my child off at rehearsal, bought my ticket to tonight’s program, panicked momentarily about the fact that I forgot that I need to also pay for parking when I pick them up from rehearsal, realized I have enough change for that and parking again for the program, received a phone call from my mom and took her to the store. It’s not even 10am yet.
My wife and I only have one car, so because I need it today, I’ll be dropping her off at work and she’ll have to stay late so that I can attend our child’s program. Having only one vehicle and two adults working separate jobs (sometimes at different times) can be a pain in the ass. I am, however, glad that we have a car to begin with – not all are so lucky.

Anywho! I’m excited for the concert. I’ll probably try to get a few things done in between dropping the wife off at work and picking the child up from rehearsal.

Dreaming Like A Fool

Sometimes dreams can make fools of us and sometimes dreams can push us to a life we want.
In the age of the internet, we constantly see people who are living their lives to the fullest. They’ve made successful careers, entrepreneurships, travel, have a picture-perfect home, and so on. Some of them had advantages that we may not, others started about where we are. Regardless of how they got there, it can seem to the rest of us to be an impossible dream.
Should we make fools of ourselves until we can find a way to bring our dreams to life? Is that what everyone else is doing?

As an artist, I want to make a living doing what I love. Instead, it’s treated more as a hobby. I can’t afford to quit my day job to create art all day. Nor do I always feel motivated enough after work to work on my art. My job leaves me feeling mentally drained. On top of that, I’m now stuck with a shift that leaves me getting home later in the day. I still have a family to care for and I still have to wake up early in the morning. I’d consider working on my art in the mornings, but let’s be real here: I’d never get to the regular job remotely on time if I did that.
Still, I do what I can when I can.

This feeling of not knowing how to get from point fuckthisjob to point gettingpaidtoart is one of frustration. I could do an online store! But marketing is not a skill that I am adept at even with the use of social media.
Regardless, I’m still trying. I recently moved from Teespring to Redbubble as AlviniaBear. It was recommended to me by a coworker whose friend uses it. There are more features to protect my designs and more products available to sell. My Teespring store is still available under Art by Alvinia for now, although I plan to remove it eventually. I have a Facebook page for my art and I’m on Curensea.
I also used to sell handmade jewelry locally. It was a learning experience. While I love making jewelry, it is expensive to do so and I realized pretty quickly that I was underpricing my work. I hope to get back into that side business once I can afford to make the investment in supplies.

Another thing I have considered is local events. Problem for me? A: There are often fees that I can’t always afford. B: These usually occur on weekends/ evenings while I am scheduled to work. I only have so many days available to request off and I also have a child that has music programs/ appointments/ holidays to spend with/ et cetera. I’m still keeping an eye out. Surely, I’ll find an opportunity that works for my life! Hopefully…

This living the life I want is difficult to achieve. I’m not there yet and can only hope I will be someday. But, hey, nobody ever said it would be easy. (Well, except some people on the internet. Liars.) I’m still figuring it out and feeling like a fool while I do so. Even just knowing that I am doing what I know I can is rewarding.

The purpose of this post isn’t just to complain about how hard it is, it’s to let others like me know that you are not alone. Don’t give up on your dreams. Maybe you’re not where you need to be just yet. Maybe life and responsibilities get in the way. But keep trying even if you feel ridiculous. If nothing else, at least you’ll be able to say that you did that much.