Categories for My story

Masturbation

In the silent period in my life i spend time living and working offline and gaming. I remember leaving my work in 2011 and starting as a freelancer. I remember when the diagnosis for diabetes was made in 2011. I remember not thinking about the diabetes that much. I remember i stopped drinking alcohol every single day. I remember i stopped smoking January 2008. I lost around ten kilo body weight. I remember playing World of Warcraft a lot. Making friends, raiding together. Having fun.

I remember i masturbated a couple of times in those years. But it felt quite obligatory to be honest. I felt a desire for a relief. It never really happened. I wasn’t thinking of anyone. I wasn’t in love. My life felt empty.

I remember that feeling of that sledgehammer hitting me sometime in October 2014. I remember sitting or standing in the train with my mind racing and my thoughts blowing through me. I remember leaving the temporary job i had in the middle of the country. I remember one of the last days there, when i climbed all the way up to the roof of the high building i was working in, discovering the cleaners sitting there and having something to eat, walking up to the roof and looking out over the Netherlands in this hazy landscape.

I remember my first thoughts: i need to get back to work. I remember the feeling of haste, of NOW! NOW! NOW! Desperately. I remember falling in love. Strangely. Falling out of love. The sadness i felt around Christmas time. It will not happen. Of course not. Silly girl. Stupid silly girl.

I didn’t give up. That time i worked on the about page of lfs.nl and i realised that was going to be the last page of it. Thinking about it for a week. Yes.

I remember starting ellenpronk.com. Which i had for a couple of years. Which i used for work, for the email. For which i had vague plans to make a website for. Of course not!

Hell no. For me, for my own work. Of course!

I was mad. Crazy. My head full.

I still am.

I did masturbate a lot in those early days. Sometimes two or three times a day. I felt this need. This desire. I didn’t have sex with a real person. I did meet some nice men. Thoughts did play through my mind. This one? Or that one? Maybe? But there was always something or someone holding me back. I have learned to control myself a bit. A little bit.

I felt i needed to get somewhere. I needed to look at myself in this world. This crazy crazy world. Much crazier than i am myself. Insane. This jumble of people expressing anything coming in their minds. Strange. Weird.

I did find friends. In the garden. I love working in it, talking with the other people visiting and working there. Looking outside. Sometimes waving to the people walking by, looking in. My peace and quiet. Mostly. I love to cook. This Sunday it is time for the Harvest Feast. I will bake tarts and cookies. Thoroughly enjoy it.

I do think i have grown up. A bit. I hope so. I feel stronger. More aware. Not that i have my story completely ready, no. But still, more of an adult.

I still would love to meet somebody nice. Creative. Someone to talk with. Play chess with. Cook for. Cuddle with. Have sex with. Of course. But my life is my own.

I feel quiet. Over the past few weeks thoughts about this post went through my mind. Sometimes thoughts rushed through me. But now, i feel quiet. And ready. For whatever life will bring to me.

Source: Jean Fautrier drawings for the book L’Alleluiah by Georges Batailles.

Published on September 27, 2019 at 6:00 by

The psychiatrist

It was around 2004 or 2005 that i thought there was something really wrong with me. Nothing seemed to work for me. I had fallen in love with somebody who clearly said to me he wasn’t in love with me. My work was only half satisfying me. So i went to the Riagg, the institute for ambulant mental healthcare. This institute doesn’t exist anymore. They referred me to a psychiatrist.

I went there and we talked. Truly, i don’t remember that much about what we talked about. A few things he said to me i do remember. Once he said to me that i was continuously wearing the same clothes. At another point he said to me my mother might be a bigger issue to me that i thought. We did talk about my father, who i hadn’t seen for around fifteen years at the time. At both points i felt he had a point. My clothes, hmm, not a big point really. I still wear similar clothes during the week. At home i wear my home clothes, that are comfortable and easy. To the garden i wear other clothes. When i go shopping i wear a dress or pants and a t-shirt. Very basic.

I love my mother. But she is part of a life behind me. My father is somebody i don’t think about too much really. A part of a life way behind me.

I think i went to this psychiatrist for around a year. When i left he said to me i could come back if i wanted to. I never did. Nor want to.

I left with the feeling i should be a bit more nicer to myself. More forgiving for all the mistakes i make. No, i’m not perfect. I do not need to be.

Looking back on it, i really do not think i needed to go to the psychiatrist. There wasn’t much wrong with me. Still, it is not wrong i went at the time.

Published on September 10, 2019 at 6:00 by

Intimacy

I have grown older over the years. I see the wrinkles in my face. My thinning brows. It’s not all as smooth as it once was. I do find that difficult. Just yet, i made photos of my face. I opened them in photoshop and i have to keep myself from adding a blur filter. Don’t do that!

I’m happy the eczema around my mouth is finally disappearing though.

I do get older. Luckily! I do feel quieter in myself. I feel more aware. Aware of what happens inside of me and outside of me. I’m thinking. All the time.

The past five years have been very thought provoking. It started with me falling in love. I’m still not sure why that happened. I am happy that it was very inconsequential. Very dreamlike. Not real. Apart from my own feelings. It gave me the opportunity to think about myself, to dissect myself. Take away all these parts i thought was me, to find out it is not.

I’m trying to live the best life i can imagine. With friends around me, activities which makes me happy. Doing something worthwhile. And yes, working on this website is worthwhile for me. It is my diary. A place in which i can play around, express thoughts, show photos, drawings. Whatever i want. It is not high art. But i do love it myself. Working in the garden is also important. The people i meet there are friends.

I do long for somebody to be close with. Somebody to share my life with. Desperately. Somebody to be friends with. Be silent with.

I still do.

Published on September 6, 2019 at 6:00 by

About ellenpronk.com

I have been working on this website ellenpronk.com for four and a half years now. First of all, i love making work online. Ever since i started 1 July 1997 it was wonderful learning new things and making something that surprised me.

I tried out a few different upload schedules. First it was whenever i felt like it. When i started making presents in 1999, i made one every day for quite some time. I set the time of upload, the date and i was done. After a year or so it did wear me out, so i took a break more often. I did once say that the five days a week updates agreed with me the best. So when i started working on this website, ellenpronk.com, i decided from the start to do five updates a week. I also decided to give myself some weeks of free time. Five weeks in total, the same amount you get here in the Netherlands when you work. This year is the first year i will be taking up all these weeks: three in summer, two around Christmas.

I do still think about my quiet time, the eight years between 2006 and 2014. I remember feeling i had to hold on. But i did let go more and more. It did fade away.

And the world changed. Time moved on.

I love this work. Honestly love it. Not every post i make, not every single thing. Sometimes my life just keeps on going and i don’t think about it that much. Not that i imagine many people watch what i am doing. Hell no. But that is not the most important thing. To me working on this website, making an update for each working day of the week is very fulfilling. With all the difficulties of course, like last week. A friend expressed his doubt about this website. He said i put too much trust into it. I do understand it, but i simply can not let go. This is my work. This is what i do in my life. And yes, for years i have worked besides it. No problem. But times have changed. I don’t know what sort of work i would enjoy doing.

So this is what i do. Here. I do hope you will find some enjoyment in this place.

Published on August 21, 2019 at 6:00 by

Scared shitless

I only have five months until i have to leave my house. During the day i feel fine, but at night i feel so afraid at times. What if all i imagine will happen to me doesn’t happen? I only have around forty-five thousand euros left, only for a year of rent. What then? What if i need to find a job after that? Only a week ago i checked the rent apartments in the center of Rotterdam, the cheapest are a thousand euros a month, and most are more fifteen hundred. What if? What if?

Scared. Nightmares circling around my head. Deep dark thoughts enter my mind. What if?

What if i break? What if i can not follow through? What if i feel lost in this world? What if i stay this small and insignificant? What if?

I wrote the previous part yesterday. Or even on Friday. Last night i was thinking about this coming to the conclusion this was a complete mistake to write. I should be tough and try to break out and be confident.

This afternoon i spoke with two people about these things in the garden. I cried. Not because i am sad, but because i am emotional. Some truths were spoken. That i put too much faith in this website. I trust it too much. I can see that point.

I said that it was hard for me to reach an outspoken truth here on this site. That each time i feel i’m simply not getting to the point i want to make. That i need one chance. Only one. That i should grab it with both hands and not let go. That i am a woman. In our patriarchate world this means i am not fully heard or seen. This makes what i do very difficult, as i have masculine traits myself. As does any person on this world.

I can not let go. Not yet anyway. I still trust myself. Despite what my friends say.

* The image at the top of this post is the duckduckgo images page for searching for the word patriarchate.

Published on August 12, 2019 at 6:00 by

Contraception

I was sixteen years old. Together with my mother i went to our family doctor. My period was giving me cramps. I had met someone while i was on holidays. You never knew when it would happen, so birth control was a good option. It was 1980.

I got the pill. No need to add anything, everybody knew what it was. The pill. Not that i talked about it with other people. It just made sense that i had one. It was normal. And yes, my period didn’t give me anymore cramps.

That someone i had met fizzled away. There was a guy in school i fell in love with. We kissed a bit. But no sex. And when i went to the Technical University Delft nothing much changed. I made friends. There was one beautiful guy who i only looked at from a distance. And i kept on taking the pill. You never knew what would happen. I thought of myself as an average girl. It was bound to happen one day.

I moved into my own house when i was twenty-one. In Rotterdam. After a few months i started thinking: why take a pill each and every day for a pain i had only once a month? Yes, it was birth control, but i wasn’t having any sex. So after a few months i stopped with the pill. The cramps were not that bad really.

I had sex with someone when i was twenty-eight. We used condoms. The last time we had sex, the condom tore. So i took the morning-after pill. The one and only time i ever did.

Once we broke up, i remember thinking that i would be a bit more careful the next time. That i wanted to be in love the next time. Completely.

One time after that i did fell in love with someone else. He didn’t fall in love with me.

It all seems like such a long time ago. Only for around six years i used contraception. Because it was normal. The thing you do. Like, you wouldn’t want to get pregnant, right?

I still feel very happy i decided against continuing with the pill when i was in my early twenties. I don’t think i should ever have taken the pill for my cramps. There are other less invasive medicines i could have used for that.

As fot the literature about the pill, i haven’t dived into that. There are many sources online, a quick search will do. Or simply start with reading the wikipedia article about birth control.

Published on August 6, 2019 at 6:00 by

Thinking out loud

Two weeks ago i woke up in the middle of the night. I sat up straight in my bed. Thoughts were running through my head. I could hear them loud and clear.

I forgot. Of course. But i know what surrounded this night. The evening before i started reading the book Staat van Verwarring written by Ad Verbrugge. A book wherein erotic love between a man and a woman stands in the middle. A book wherein surrendering is almost impossible in our current atomized postmodern time.

I don’t know if i can surrender. Or want to? I do dream about it. It is a steady background fantasy in my life. So on the one hand yes, of course i want this. In a perfect situation, with the perfect man, i would love that this would happen to me. It doesn’t mean i want to be loved and cherished and worshiped. I want a friend. A true friend. Someone i can take care of. Someone to laugh with. Talk with about anything. Cook for. Cuddle with. And yes, have sex with. I’d love that. Truly.

But right now, i have some other things on my mind. Like those words in my mind two weeks ago. The words i forgot. Which i hope will come back to me eventually. There is something in my mind which needs to get out, desperately. After that, well, that is for another time. For now, i need to make more effort to try and say what i really want to say in as clear a voice as i can have.

Enjoy the weekend. Salute!

Published on July 26, 2019 at 6:00 by

Falling out of love

I am growing older. I see it in the photo i just made of myself. More wrinkles. I did make the photo a lot brighter in photoshop. Vanity. Yeah.

I am still single. Living by myself. It is still my dream, falling in love. I left it once, in my silent time. Didn’t think about it much then. For the past five years it has been changing. I am growing up. Growing stronger. Thinking more. Even though it is still hard for me to speak my mind clearly, to find the time to relax and think properly and let the words form inside me and speak them. Difficult.

My dream of falling in love and someone else falling in love with me is very private. I kept it for myself mostly. It is not the biggest dream i have. My biggest dream is me leading the life i want to lead. Talking with people, in public. Talking about this world, what we make of it. Talking about our ideas, our wishes. Talking about celebrities, and why we love them. Talking about changes we can make in our lives. Talking about making our lives more truthful, about working together for a better future. Talking about working together making the world a better place for all the living beings on it.

Stuff like that.

So right now, i’m actually falling out of love. I don’t have the time. Sorry no. Not for me, not right now.

I have work to do.

Published on July 19, 2019 at 6:00 by

Once more

It is warm. The warm stones are nice. My mother points. Behind me. My dad is standing there. With something in front of his face.

Click

This is a dream. A dream when i was in my early twenties.

It is a memory. A memory dream. Something that really happened to me. Not something terribly important. Just me, my mom, my dad. And a camera.

I had the photograph. I was around a year and a half. A chubby white haired little girl. Not looking very happy. Concentrated. Looking behind me. My mom sitting in a chair with dark hair set in a high bun pointing towards the camera.

It was 1965.

My father is not visible in the photograph. He is the photographer.

Click

I misplaced the photo. Lost it, i guess. The memory is still vivid. I can still feel the warmth of the stones beneath my hands. Happy. Careless. Not a worry on my mind.

8 February 1986. Saturday. For two months i have been living by myself in the west part of Rotterdam. Loving it. Still studying Industrial Design in Delft.

This evening i made drawings. I had done a water colour presentation drawing course in Delft. This evening i made a set of drawings which puzzled me. Six drawings, the first three of me and my life up until that time. The last three more general. I didn’t understand them.

When i was done i remember looking at these drawings. Surprised. Puzzled. Not sure when i got the feeling i should give away these drawings. Within a few days at least. The next week i made a box for them. They were small. Around 10 x 15 centimeters.

The first time i gave them away was to my then best friend. We stopped seeing each other within a few months. She gave the drawings back to me, after a couple of weeks.

The second time i gave them away was in ten years time, the mid 90s. A new best friend. She gave them back to me as well. I remember watching the drawings while they were at her place. I think it was clear these drawings ment a lot to me. Maybe that was the reason she gave them back.

These drawings ended up in the cupboard in my living room. I wasn’t looking at them. I almost forgot i had drawn them.

Almost.

In October 2014 i had my sledgehammer moment. A few weeks after that i got the drawings out of the cupboard and set them in the bookcase. Clearly visible.

In November i thought that it would be a good idea to give these drawings away to Green Gartside of Scritti Politti. Since 1985 i have admired his songs and writings and voice. I tried to get in touch, but i knew he was a very private person. Nothing came of it.

A year later i read that Scritti Politti would be giving a concert in London on 5 February 2016 in the Roundhouse. I ordered a ticket, bought a bus ticket, booked an airbnb close to the Roundhouse. I was set.

That evening, after the gig, i did give my drawings to Green Gartside. It took a bit of time. So many people wanted to talk to him. I was a bit hesitant. His wife recognized me from earlier gigs in 2006. I told her i had something i wanted to give to him. She called him over. These moments are etched in my mind.

This is more than three years ago. I’m still happy i found the courage to gave these drawings away to someone i admire. It is one of the happiest memories i have.

The work i do. The work i enjoy. The work from which i learn. Yes, this here. On the internet. There is of course the work i made before. At home. At artschool. The drawings i made before i went to artschool. A prelude.

I still remember my first steps online. The very first words i wrote online. The first gif animations i made. Glorious.

I made steps. I took breaks. Sometimes a couple of days. A week.

Then eight years.

I remember when i stopped making presents. I didn’t let go, no. I kept it on my mind. The first few years anyway. In the end though, making presents had disappeared. I lived my life. Time moved on.

I still don’t know what happened, why i felt like this sledgehammer hit me. I don’t know what caused it. It did get me back to work. First on lfs.nl, a couple of months later on ellenpronk.com. My work changed. More photography. The short films. Cooking. Singing. And three years ago the garden. I’m not hiding anymore.

Not that every day is a great day, hell no. Great days are rare. But still, quite a few good days. I do enjoy the rhythm this website gives my life. A new post five days a week, at six in the morning. Five weeks vacation each year. Like a regular job.

I am fifty-five. Over halfway my life. There are so many things i still need to work on. My health. My weight. My patience. My anger. My understanding.

The past five years i worked on myself. Trying to let go of anger. Which is difficult. Trying to be kind. Easy with people i do not know. Harder when i feel hurt. I try to look at the world with an open mind. Still working on that one.

I am lucky to be born in the Netherlands. This wealthy part of the world. I am lucky to have had an education. I am lucky i was able to make my own choices. For the most part. I am lucky.

After this post i will take a three week break. And then i will make a decision about my life. What work i want to do. What work i am able to do. I would prefer to keep on working on this website. Keep on working in the garden. But it is not all up to me.

I hope things will work out. I hope i can continue on my path to leading a fuller life. I hope for a bit of happiness. I hope for a bit of love. I hope to meet many people, i hope to talk with many people. How we would like the world to be. Not as it is right now. Something to work towards. Together.

I did find a bit of peace in me. A place of quiet.

Salute.

Published on June 21, 2019 at 6:00 by

1978

In 1978 my musical tastes turned. Up until that time my eldest sister was my main influence on my music taste. From 1978, fourteen years old, i developed my own. Gruppo Sportivo, Nina Hagen, Elvis Costello, The Police, The Specials, Madness. This was the music i loved between 1978 and 1980. In my mixtapes on Spotify i have many songs from these days.

A week ago while i was browsing youtube, i came across Naturträne, a song by Nina Hagen. I hadn’t heard this song for years. This song is not on Spotify. Neither is Unbeschreiblich Weiblich, a glorious song for my fourteen year old self. For the rest of the week this song played around in my head.

I did do an earlier post about my school diaries. I just went through them again. Great.

So here are songs from these years. I love to look up all these songs! Yay!

Nina Hagen

Gruppo Sportivo

Elvis Costello

The Police

The Specials

Madness

Published on June 3, 2019 at 6:00 by