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It was my mum's birthday yesterday. Apparently, she got woken up by her sister at about twenty to nine in the morning - her sister is in her seventies, had a stroke a few years ago, and her only daughter is currently in hospital recovering from an operation to remove a brain tumour, but they were expecting her to come out of hospital a few weeks ago. Then my mum had to go to a CPR training session. And after that, she decided to let my ON come over, because it was her birthday and because he normally comes down on a Tuesday, but she was working today. And - I didn't get the full story of this, but it was something like; a community/school nurse was at my sister's house, and wanted to weigh the kids and measure their height. My MN and YN weren't in, so my sister either asked my mum to go look for them, or my mum was just driving away with my ON and saw them. Much, much further away from the house than they should have been, considering my MN is 8 and my YN is 5. Apparently, when she stopped to pick them up, my YN was crying, and saying something about how a man had chased them, threatening to call the police, because my MN was throwing stones. My MN, at the time, just refused to get in the car, because he'd found some older boys to hang around with. It was around this time my mum's sister called her again, crying. But, after that was all done, we went out for a meal, and it was pretty nice.

Today my mum had a twilight shift at the hospital, which basically means she's working from 12pm to 12am - pretty much all her shifts are 12 hours these days, but sometimes she does day shifts, which are about 7am to 7pm. She normally only does one a week, but for some reason the shifts have fallen, this week and last week, so she's doing two on consecutive days. So she did the CPR session yesterday, is working a twilight today, and is working a twilight tomorrow.

So she was up this morning, getting ready for a 12 hour shift at the hospital, and apparently my sister called her, asking her if she could look after my MN for an hour, because she wanted to get ready for a Jobcentre appointment, which had been rescheduled from last week after she was 15 minutes late and they refused to see her. Because my MN is still not at school till tomorrow, because she didn't sort out his transport. She apparently said her appointment was at 11:40, and "you're not at work till 12, are you?". At which point my mum had to point out that no, she had to get to work for at least 11:45, to be ready for the start of her shift. In the end, she agreed to watch him, and my sister said she'd just meet her before she went into work, and pick up my MN then. Let's hope that worked out. Before that - I essentially woke up to mum telling me my sister had called her, while she was getting ready, and she also told me that my MN had apparently said that while he was out on his jaunt yesterday "an old man had forced him to smoke weed". When my MN came to our house, the story had apparently changed to it being one of the older, 12 year-old boys he was with who'd forced him to smoke weed.

Tonight, I came home and asked my dad if he'd heard about mum's exciting morning, and he said he'd had an exciting afternoon, because he'd gone over to my sister's for something, and my MN was acting like a lunatic. Apparently he was running around with a mop, and then my dad took it off him, so he started jumping on furniture, trying to push things over. My sister didn't react much to this, so my dad told her to do something with him, she tried to tell him to stop, he told her to fuck off, and she ended up kicking him. After which he ran outside, picked up a brick, and threw it through a window of their shed, smashing it. There are three windows in the shed, and he's broken them all, apparently. My dad then started talking about how my MN needed to go away, just go away somewhere, probably to a padded cell. And how my sister's been ruining my dad's life since she was 13, and it's all just bollocks.

And I'm not doing very well, to be honest. This might be obvious from the posts I'm making lately, but...this is just exhausting. And awful. And honestly, it might not be so bad, but given everything that's going on with my job at the moment, I just don't know what's going on with that either. If I could be confident that I could stay at my job, getting my wage, for as long as I wanted to, until I chose to leave, at least that would be something I could feel secure about. But, even though there's no particular indication the new company are going to let us go, I can't feel secure about it, not until we get some concrete news one way or the other. So I don't know what's going to happen with my family, and I don't know what's going to happen with my job, and I don't know what effect either of those things are going to have on my mental health. And I'm just really tired, and I can't tell if it's because the weather changed over the weekend and everyone's tired, or I ate too much, or I'm just actually not sleeping enough, or it's my hormones. But I just feel miserable. I cried at porn the other night. It was this really good dubcon, which was mostly overall consensual, just a bit pushing, but wasn't just about the 'empowerment' of complete submission, and it crystallised some of my attitudes/issues around dubcon. It was around the same time I saw a post on Tumblr shouting out to and supporting our new label, 'hypersexuals', who are apparently people who have kinks that upset or disgust them, have sex all the time, and have sex as a form of self-harm with people they don't like. Maybe? Maybe all of those features are supposed to be separate? I don't think they should necessarily be lumped in under one label anyway. But I definitely don't think it's helpful to just put them under one label and passively accept them in a way that lets people avoid talking or thinking about subjects, rather than thinking or talking about why people have those feelings or do those things. I'm sorry, I'm not being very progressive right now. I probably just don't understand tumblr, or young people, and how supportive but also critically-thinking they truly are.

Anyway. That post annoyed me. But they crying thing, I genuinely don't know if it's because it crystallised a few issues for me, or because I'm feeling incredibly emotionally raw because of everything that's going on at the moment. I got a bit teary last night, because my mum turned 68 and started asking if she was an old woman, she wasn't an old woman was she? And my dad started reminiscing about when he was young and used to punch people so hard he detached their retinas. I think they both miss their youth, and it upsets me to think in ideal circumstances, I will outlive them and they'll die and I'll have to live without them. And also their present is so awful, and that upsets me when I think about it, even though we've all kind of accepted it as normal at this point. I followed that up with a dream last night where my sister was younger, and just had one young kid, but kept coming into our house and insisting she should stay with us and eat our food because she didn't have any food for the kid at home, and she tried to make this up to us with beautiful singing, and I had to tell her that no matter how beautiful the singing was, it did not in fact make up for her invading all of our space and our house, and shouting at her that she was an awful cow and she was ruining all our lives. I told my mum about it this morning, and she was like "that was no dream".

Anyway. This sucks. I don't really know what to do about it. I could go see my doctor, but I honestly don't know what they can do for me. I'm already on anti-depressants, that I'm pretty sure I should have been weaned off of this spring. Other than that, I don't know that I have time for counselling or anything. I could call Samaritans to talk about this stuff, but they can't really talk back to you about stuff because they aren't trained, so it wouldn't really be like having a conversation about it. I'm just...I don't know if I should just hunker down, and hope for the best, wait for it to sort of get better. I've already had to take a step back from video game news, because it's just too stressful given what some arseholes on the internet think. I feel like crying right now, but I don't know if it'll help to just let myself be emotional about it. Because at what point do I stop? I should probably talk to my mum about this. But I don't really want to put any more on her shoulders. But I don't think I'm coping super well at the moment, and it might help the both of us to talk about it.
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Well, my dad went to the tip for what seemed to be an hour or two, my sister came back from her whatever, and mostly fell asleep on the couch, and my YN has just had a horrific sounding temper tantrum, but when I came downstairs (I'd been on the loo), my mum was just giving my MN some strawberries and meringue, while my YN looked on licking his lips, but still with tears drying on his face. Idk.
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I booted my computer up as usual today, and when I clicked to go on the internet it chose to open an infinite amount of Firefox windows. Bold choice, computer.

Truth be told, I'm a little concerned about it. The fans - or something - have been squeaking more lately, even when it isn't hot, and the whole computer keeps crashing, I think when it's trying to download new graphics drivers or something. It definitely did when I tried to watch a livestream at E3. I've only just built this computer, and it cost a lot of money to do so. Don't be broken, computer.

We're on the second week of 'babysitting sometimes' for my sister, and it's already gone tits-up. It turns out what's actually going on is that she's got some sort of flirtation thing going on with the guy who takes my MN to his school (when he has transport to his school), and so she wants some free time on the weekends to see him. So who knows what's even going to happen with that, and apparently the kids' dad has heard about this and said if she has anyone round to the house, he'll come in and smash their face in. Which is lovely. But anyway, regardless, that's the reason she wants us to have the kids 'sometimes'. She was apparently meant to be seeing this guy last week, but he cancelled at the last minute, so now she's seeing him this week. So now we have all three kids, except my mum was so worried about what my dad would say about it, she didn't tell him till this morning. And since he was taking my MN to football yesterday morning, and we were going to an open-air concert yesterday evening, he had stuff he was planning to do today. So currently, my dad's at the tip, the kids refused to go with him, so my mum's downstairs cooking a Sunday dinner, while trying to keep an eye on two of our nephews outside. I would go watch them, but they're only going to run in if there's a problem, so I'd basically be standing sentry for no reason. My ON and I have just been up town, because it's my mum's birthday tomorrow and there's some stuff we needed to get at the last minute, and basically it's been a very busy weekend and there's not been a lot of communication. And my sister's currently off on a date.

It wouldn't be so bad, but like I say, we had my MN to sleep on Friday night, and then my parents took him to football yesterday morning, and then we immediately got my ON, who came to our house to play on the computer, then came to the concert with us, then slept overnight. It's not like we don't have the kids otherwise.
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I'm bleeding. So I'm going to guess that it was pre-menstrual tension. Also I said something to my MN. He claimed he and his friend didn't even do anything, they just went over when the girls shouted to them and then the girls said they were perving on them, and he seemed vaguely actually indignant about the whole thing. He is a pretty good liar though. So idk. I said some stuff about things boys did to me when I was a little girl, and told him it's not okay to hurt girls to impress other boys. Don't know how much of it went in but. It's all I can do. Respect women, kids.
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I've been feeling so stressed lately. Just stuff going round and round in my head, like I want to write essays or something about it, but I don't. I couldn't sleep last night. And it's one of those things where I can't tell if me getting too anxious about that stuff, or if I'm anxious because of other stuff going on in my life, family stuff and that, and my anxiety's getting an outlet through worrying about other things. I've also been having weird cramping today and yesterday, so it could be pre-menstrual tension, but I just have no idea what my cycle is or what's going on with my body anymore.

My MN is coming around, and I've been thinking about saying something to him about perving on those girls, because I don't want to let him think it's okay. But we've just had some neighbours round, because we live in a residential cul-de-sac, and the lovely older couple who've lived down at the end since we moved in are having some sort of planning war with the guy who lives near them, and wants to stop them parking their cars where they always have so he can knock down a wall and have a driveway at the back of his house. Despite the fact he's completely block-paved the front of his house and has been selling multiple cars from it for years - which he's not supposed to do. So now I'm too tired to even try to have a discussion with my MN.

Video games make me happy. Most of the video games I really want to play are not coming out for a year or so. I tell a lie, some are coming out very soon, but they're not the ones I'm obsessing over because they're not the ones that are far away.
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Soaps just seem to be full of rape victims being tormented by their rapists these days.

And on a similar note, the police were apparently around at my sister's the other day, because my MN and his arsehole little friend were 'perving on some girls'. On the one hand, I'm not surprised given that similar things have happened before. On the other hand, I genuinely never thought my nephew would be the type of boy who would hurt girls just to impress other boys. But here we are.
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My computer is making distressed noises.

I'm hot too, computer.
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You know, it's clear to me now how much of an internet shut-in I have been my entire life, because I keep being amazed how many places don't have threaded comments outside of LJ/dreamwidth. Why? What the fuck? It's so impossible to have a conversation. I've started leaving comments on some of the Let's Play videos I watch (on their personal site only because a) fuck Youtube comments, and b) fuck G+ making you tell it your address), and it's just. Ridiculous. You can't reply to a comment on a comment. If someone replies to my comment, I can't respond to them. As far as I can tell? I know a comments section is different from say, a forum, but still. Jesus Christ.

Also, at the tender age of 32, I have figured out why people do spring cleaning. It's because you want your house clean by summer, and it is a genuine nightmare trying to do it in summer heat.

I watched Casualty last night, and it made me cry, as it always does since Cal died. It's awful, but I'd also almost forgotten soaps could do that to me, so well done to them.

(Also, I went into the coronation street Tumblr tag the other day to see if anyone anywhere shipped Daniel and Adam, and it was mostly porn. Like, straight up porn. And pictures that looked very much like they'd been stolen from soap actresses' phones. What is this world?)

It's too hot for most thoughts. I got a new MP3 player yesterday because my old one fell and the down button stopped working, and now I've learned that most of my music collection didn't carry over when I swapped to the new computer. Woe.
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I'm not having my window open while I sleep tonight.

I'm having two windows open.
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Well, there was going to be a 'candle empty. I win' post for this moment. But instead, I left the candle burning even when I could see there was barely any wax left, thinking it would just burn out when it was empty. But because the wick had turned into a lump of charcoal, it just kept burning, and then the glass candleholder exploded.

I think the candle wins.
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The candle turned out to need a lot more coddling than I thought. A lot of propping up the wick with scissors was required to keep it out of the wax.

But you know, I think I might even miss it when it's gone.

My sister has asked my mum if she'll consider babysitting sometimes, so she can have some time to herself. My mum is sort of considering whether she'd rather go to my sister's for it, or have the kids over here. Apparently my sister is a lot better at the moment. Idk, I feel like it's my mum that needs the break, if anyone, and it'd be a bit much if my sister wants my parents to watch the kids every Saturday, or something. But we'll see if it improves things.

I keep catching snippets of Emmerdale and Coronation Street when I'm downstairs. They still seem to be focusing a lot on storylines that annoy me. Either taking some storylines super-seriously, or casually ignoring massive leaps of logic in others. Legit, who would be upset with someone who tried to kill Ken? Tried to end his tyranny? I could almost be interested if Daniel was allowed to be Random Academic Maniac, but no, he has to suffer, rather than be given a medal. It's bullshit.
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I took some of the stuff in my room to the charity shop today, and the candle's burning.

Aw yeah.
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I watched all the press conferences. Got up at 5am to watch one press conference. Felt kinda dead. Haven't showered. But it was good, I got to hear about all the stuff coming soon. It was a slightly underwhelming year, since there weren't any massive announcements like last year, which was slightly offset by the fact I took a week off work for it, but it was still really good and solid, and fun to hear about all that stuff, and mostly what I learned is the gaming community is terrible and can't be pleased. Literally just last week there were articles criticising Playstation for 'cheating' at E3 by showing stuff that isn't going to be out for years, and this year everyone was upset there weren't enough announcements of new games super-early in their development, that won't be out for years to come. People were complaining recently about Mass Effect: Andromeda, and how they should have taken more time to finish it and iron out all the bugs, and now they're complaining we're not getting any news on massive games in development or release dates for them, people are just WORKING on them. People complaining about certain games just getting a constant dripfeed of information and never a release date, and then complaining about not getting a constant dripfeed of information about other games that are obviously going to take a long time to come out. People basically just want games to be made faster. Which isn't going to happen.

Really what I want to do is find gaming forums where I can talk about my endless thoughts on video games and video games culture, but I don't want to find one full of misogyny and rape threats, which I think is unlikely. So I'm just going to randomly share my thoughts here, until I lose my rag and start one.

Anyway. It's been super nice having the week off work. I can totally see how all those ladies of leisure and rich sons of nobility in the past became polymaths, because I just feel like I can do anything. Legit just this morning started thinking about how I should start taking Spanish lessons again, and become fluent. Or how I could just up and go to Scarborough tomorrow, if I wanted, go to the Sealife Centre and the seaside. I think Chaucer really nailed in the Cant. Tales when he talked about spring and how people 'long to go on pilgrimages' - which was just a religious excuse for a nice trip, basically. It all feels possible when you have so much free time. Even though I know when I'm back at work I'll just be like 'ugh'.

Random observations I've had over the past few days:

  • It's a weird feeling when you love a pairing so much you boot up Google Translate.

  • Chris so fancies Michaela on Springwatch.

  • It's super-weird to hear bisexual women talking about women the way straight men talk about women.
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Well, I tried to watch the Xbox conference live, and as soon as I switched to the channel my computer crashed. At first I thought it was just part of the conference, but no. I switched it back on, and it automatically loaded the conference up when I opened Firefox but it. kept. stopping and. starting. and I. couldn't. bear. it. so I switched to a different livestream (which ran perfectly), but couldn't go back to the beginning again. I'm currently waiting for them to put up a video of it, so I can watch the first half hour that I missed.

Technology, huh?

It was pretty good though. Most of the stuff they announced is coming to PCs too, so I don't feel too left out of any of it.

And then I get to decide how much sleep to try to get before getting up at 5am for the Bethesda conference.

But I don't have to go to work tomorrow. Yay.
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Video game update: EA is boring as fuck.

My current project in my bedroom, is attempting to get rid of a large candle I don't want anymore by burning it out completely, so I can clean out and recycle the glass jar. What I have learned is that candles are shit. Every time I turned around, after burning it for a while, the wick - which had started in the middle of the wax, I promise you - had started listing over to the side, melting only half the wax in the candle, and getting to a point where it was about to disappear under the wax, which would put out the flame. In these cases, if I even turned it around - because there's a picture above the candle I like and don't want to get smoke damage - the wax would whizz up over the wick, extinguishing it. Numerous times, I had to put the wick back into a usable position with a pair of scissors. Which are now encrusted with wax and, ironically, unusable. And I say wick, but by the end it was pretty much just a black lump that may have been metal, may have been string, I don't know. All I know is that it burned. Nevermind the fact that as the wax went down, it got harder and harder to light the wick without burning my fingers. Or, since I had to do it at a tilt, without melting the wax over the wick, causing it to run down and extinguish any flame I managed to make. Plus how nauseous the constant burning smell from all the matches has made me. I've currently got it down to about a fifth of it's previous height, and it extinguished itself yesterday, just from burning, and the wax (which was green) has gotten a dirty brown look, which makes me think some of the soot or muck or smoke from the burning wick has gotten into it, and might not burn anymore. I get the feeling I might have to finish it off by warming it in the other, as is my mother's way. Which will leave me with a bunch of hot wax to clear out, still.

I blackened the glass today, trying to light the wick, which I did not achieve. Fuck candles.
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Well, the DUP thing's depressing as fuck. I was fool enough, when I saw the name Democratic Unionists, to think they were a left-wing group, and would either pull the Tories in a left-wing direction or be unable to make a deal with them. I've since learned exactly what kind of group it actually is (creationism, climate change denial, and mispending huge amount of taxpayers money are pretty much the least bad things). So that's a little scary. But we're just going to have to see how it turns out, and it's not going to go down well for the Tories even if they do make a deal with them. Not that they seem to care too much about the public seeing them as evil. At least there's a strong opposition to them in parliament, given the results of the election, no matter what happens - pretty much every major party left hates them, and wants to get in the way of everything they want to do.

But you know what? I woke up yesterday to find the country had voted much more in favour of saying 'fuck you' to the Tories than I ever dreamt, and was more more in favour of genuine socialism than I ever imagined in this day and age, and that's given me faith back in the other people I share a country with, in other people in the world, no matter how this turns out politically. Although I hope this doesn't turn out the worst it possibly could, politically.

And I have a week off work, the weather's been pleasant enough the last few days, and E3 starts today. E3 is gamer Christmas, in case you didn't know. It technically starts on Monday, but a bunch of big developers have started moving their conferences to the weekend before E3 to be independent and edgy, but mostly it just feels like there's more E3. First conference is tonight - although it's all on America time, so my schedule's going to be all over the place since I want to watch them live. One conference I really want to watch is on at 5am tomorrow. So. I might be setting my alarm for that one.

But tonight I shall order delicious takeaway pizza, and learn new things. Tomorrow is the Microsoft conference - we shall learn if they have anything to offer other than a super-powerful new box and more information on what games they're making that they haven't cancelled yet. I sort of hope they have. But it's hard to imagine it not being slightly disappointing regardless.

Not that life is all fun and games. I ripped a hole in my trousers on our desk at work right before I was leaving, so I'll have to buy another pair, and last night my train home was late getting to the station, and then broke down, so we had to sit there for half an hour while they tried to get it started before they could find us a new train. I tried to find a sketch from Man Stroke Woman that perfectly encapsulates my feelings towards Northern Rail, but it seems to be the only one that hasn't been put up on Youtube. Suffice to say: I'm angry.

I was also going to say that things seemed to have calmed down a bit with my family, but apparently my parents currently have all 3 kids, because their dad was going to spend time with them 'if it wasn't raining', and it is, and my mum just had to have an argument with my YN about the filthy shorts my sister let him put on. So there you go.

I have a new game, and I'm going to Morrowind.
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Well. The country is in chaos, obviously, but this is so much more than I ever hoped.

Fuck you, Theresa May.

Also: I'm on a period again. For fuck's sake.
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Apparently Jeremy Corbyn has said some weird shit, but the only source I can find for it is the Sun. Does anyone have any more information?
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Well, this is it. The government wrote to tell me I no longer qualify for tax credits, and that I owe back £750 that they've paid me. I guess it's a good thing I didn't just spend it all. But now I just have to refigure out my finances again, and particularly my savings - because I know it's a pretty good idea to save money at this point in life. Or any point really. It was a quite a load off knowing I could just save my tax credits and then just enjoy pretty much the rest of my wage. And now, with rent to my parents and my train fare every month taken off, if I do what people suggest doing, putting exactly half my leftover money into my savings, I'll have less to spend per month than I did back when I was on ESA. But I'll have savings, obviously. But that's just one of those things about life I guess. And if I don't like the amount I'm earning at my current job, or the amount it's costing me in travel, I can try looking for a new job. It's the first time it's just been my responsibility in a while.

P.S. Wonder Woman is great. Really brilliant. A brilliant superhero movie.
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I've got When You Tell Me That You Love Me by Diana Ross stuck in my head for some reason. Possibly because of becoming a hero in Mass Effect Andromeda. It strikes me that we don't have as many ridiculous, super-emotional love ballads nowadays. I feel like our generation is poorer for it.

I've got some interesting times at work coming up, I think. The deal with the new company is about to go through, so my Facilities company basically have to do all the de-branding from the old company before next week, pretty much. The sheer fact they were doing it made me notice how many things actually have the old logo on them, like 'What to do in an emergency' posters on the walls. And a bunch of trophies in the waiting room. I don't know what they're going to do with those. I don't really have to do any of it, but I've agreed to mention to my boss anything I notice with the logo on it, because it all has to go, and at the moment that includes a bunch of forms I currently use on reception - including to book taxis on account with - and a huge amount of lanyards people use to keep their security passes clipped around their neck. I don't know that we have enough blank lanyards to replace them all, unless my boss orders in a bunch more, which will probably lead to people losing or misplacing their passes, which will make the barriers fun. And their going to have to change everyone's email addresses, because they have the old company name in them - looking forward to that. Plus the fact that a bunch of the old executives are going literally on day one, and all their parking spaces will suddenly become spare, and who knows what we're doing with them. But I will be glad if it happens next week, because the car park lady was suggesting it might be the week after, when both she and I are on holiday. I felt a little bad thinking the team would be dealing with all the changeover stuff with a temp on reception, or that I'd be leaving the morning woman who's never done a full set of car park allocations to do her first one in that situation. But if it all happens next week, I'll be happier. A week of probable chaos, and then a week off, hurrah. They're going to confirm today exactly when the changeover will happen, so we'll see.

I had a weird dream last night, involving a historical church near my house getting entirely ripped down and replaced with a new modern building, and my continually breaking things like keys and my debit card while trying to use them, so I couldn't use locks or access money anymore. Not entirely sure what that's about. I heard literally the best way to do dream analysis is to write down the features of the dream, or the parts that stand out the most, and then write down the things you associate with each of those features, and see if any of it resonates with things you're going through in your life. And voila! You have done dream analysis. I'm not sure what broken keys symbolise to me though. I don't really have time to do associations right at the moment.
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