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Does anyone have 20 bucks they could toss my way? (Paypal quirkytizzy@gmail.com)

I've got a 250$ electric bill that I'm trying to ease off Pat. Pat pays for damn near everything. Meds this week alone were 200 dollars. I'm trying to ease the pressure anyway I can - which of course, means asking other people for money.

Often. Asking a lot of people for money often. It's like - I think I could handle my body being a charity case a lot easier if everything ELSE wasn't a charity case, too. But I've run out of books to sell, clothes to sell, furniture to sell. I'm not crafty so I can't make things to sell.

And resources for bills and whatnot are hard to reach, often taking weeks to get done. The resources you guys have given me are beginning to take hold - I've got caseworker names and case numbers and whatnots. Those are encouraging. But the way it works, it doesn't just whip up hundreds of dollars on the spot.

This morning I did a full clean, therefore my next goal is to play a video game. Play a video game being a goal, you ask? Yes, because most often, I can't play them because I'm too exhausted and/or the nausea makes combat impossible. But video games are one of those things I enjoy that have fallen to the side and I want to DO something I enjoy.

This week I might start poking through Craigslist ads. They often list 3 day, 5 hour a week part time sit jobs. It won't get me insurance, and it won't bring in a lot of money, but it will give me something. I could pay my electric bill all by myself if nothing else. I'm not sure if I CAN work, physically yet, but maybe I can try and see. If I can, I wind up working. If I don't, I get fired. Not like that'd be the first time that's happened.

Maybe. But still.

Wouldn't that be all Adult and Mature. It is so frustrating - for YEARS, for fucking years, all I said was that I wanted a job where I could support myself. Pay my bills on time. Buy cat litter and milk in the same week. Have health insurance. I was 34 when I finally landed that job. I was 35 when I got sick and lost that job.

And here I am, back to survival mode, except I can't scramble the way I used to, because that kind of panic-and-don't-plan-just-DO energy isn't going to get me what I need this time.

I Adulted and then Not-Adulted. There are other jobs, and someday I will be well enough to work them, or the insurance or disability will kick in somewhere, and I won't be sitting here on the other end of this screen, tongue lolling out and tail wagging hoping for a 20 dollar paypal donation.

Someday. Eventually. In time. All words that are at the forefront of my life right now. I'd say I hate Time, but that would be Fate's invitation to do something like drastically shorten my lifespan or something. (See, if I say it out loud in specific, Fate can't do it, because Fate only plays things as a SURPRISE. I said it, therefore it lost the element of surprise and cannot be used. HA! TAKE THAT, FATE!)

I keep thinking about this "new normal" that everyone talks about. And the more the I think about it, the more resentful I get about this "new normal." Normal is being able to go to the grocery store and then have a cup of coffee somewhere and not need to collapse into bed for 2 hours afterwards. Normal is being able to vacuum without panting for half an hour after. Normal is not having to keep a goddamn tome for doctor's visits or staying in hospitals for weeks at a time.

This "new normal", to me, sounds a lot like code for "learning how to make do with less." Less energy, less concentration, less money, less social opportunity. It doesn't mean normal ANYTHING. It just means not doing a bunch of the shit you used to be able to do.

That just pisses me off. That's not normal. And it's sure as hell not a "new" thing I want to get used to. But I haven't got much choice, either.

Is there another way to put it than "a new normal"? Because the way it sounds now is just that things feel so bad now, that even the mildest of reprieves (not necessarily equaling GOOD, even) will feel "normal."

And that's not a satisfactory answer to me.
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So outside of the crippling sprained knee, yesterday was pretty awesome. We took the kids to the local skating rink, where Julien learned to skate, Audrey took to skating like a fish to water, and I learned there is a grand difference in coordination between your 20's and 30's. That's where the sprained knee comes in. I did an admirable job in getting back on my feet for the first several falls, sometimes one right after the other...until I realized that I was going to put myself out of commission for a week as opposed to a few days.

I did a little skating in my early 20's. It does not particularly translate into grace at 33. But I had such a good time and I am looking forward to the next time we can take the kids out to the rink.

There is much hobbling to be done. I dared not trust myself to safely stand in a slick shower tub, so I took a bubble bath instead. The rest of my joints protest as well. Hats off to those who push through this kind of pain daily. I recognize that I need to exercise the knee and will do so....it's just that what I want to do with it is placate it with hot water, chocolate, and not move at all.

It's not so much that hurts (though yes, it hurts A LOT), but rather I know the slightest of missteps is going to ruin my entire day. Possibly TWO days. That's what bothers me the most about it. Well, that and the fact that it hurts like a motherfucker.

Outside of the bedroom, I don't handle physical pain that well. My skills lie in the emotional fatalism of pushing yourself, not in the physical realm. The pain with the tooth debacle scared the ever loving shit out me earlier this year. I've never had to really cope with lasting or persistent physical pain. So to know some of you...and Jesse...do this everyday....my god, mad props. Truly. I am awed.
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Have you ever had to drive with a migraine? I hadn't....until today. I can now say, with full confidence and authority, that it fucking sucks. Hard-motherfucking-core, it SUCKS.

It was a 30 minute drive on a busy highway in the middle of the bright, blinding day. At least my AC was working. Oh, and roundabouts, like the one I had to use to get on the highway, are evil. FUCKING EVIL.

I probably should have just asked the lady if I could have rested in the basement before I went home. I know her and she would not have minded, I'm sure. As it was, five hours into cleaning, I went out for a cigarette, came back in, bent down to pick up my scrub brush, and knew that if I straightened back up, my shit was gonna be fucked up.

Well, you can't live forever hunched over holding a worn out cleaning brush. So I stood up and, sure enough, my day was fucked. Called her, asked her if I could put my stuff away in a corner and return Sunday.

She was very understanding. I love her, she's so great. So I dumped out my mop bucket, shoved all my cleaning stuff in it, shoved the bucket into an isolated corner and fled.

Stopped at a gas station before the highway to vomit profusely, which also sucks hardcore with a migraine. Breathing hurts, let alone the involuntary muscle contortions that go with vomiting. There was some crying going on with the vomiting, which sucks just as much.

Would have stopped the truck on the road to throw up, but 1) it was on the highway and 2) it was almost a 100 degrees out. Heat is THE DEVIL to a migraine.

Changing lanes is terrifying when you can only move your head just so. I would have stayed in the far right lane all the way, but it's a big highway and several parts have five or even six lanes for various exits.

Came home on the verge of a blackout. Stumbled into my apartment, got half stripped before I realized my window curtains were still flung wide to world. Didn't give a shit and finished getting my clothes off before I went to close them.

Two ice packs. My last Excedrin Migraine. Two Dramamine. A glass of cold water. A sleeping mask, my bed, four hours and several desperate prayers to a God I do not believe in...I'm beginning to feel something like human.

Or at least like eating. I hate that, when you throw up and then you're starving but you know if you eat you're just going to yak it up again.

I get headaches regularly. I used to get migraines regularly, but then I cut down on my caffeine. I simply hadn't been drinking enough water with my Lithium and it caught up to me.

Lesson learned. Lesson well fucking learned.

Maybe I can head back to finish cleaning tomorrow after my other cleaning appointment. Get it all done tomorrow. And thank you - you guys might be right about charging higher. Not for the folks right now, but for others, maybe. I like that idea. Thank you.

And B - I do generally use their appliances, mops, and brooms, but I do let them know right off the bat that I have my own and am happy to bring them if they like. I ALWAYS use my own cleaning solutions, scrubbing materials, rags and paper towels. I think people generally prefer having the appliances they know and trust being used, which is fine. But yeah, if they are letting me use their tools, I don't mind them paying me a little less, since I'm not putting wear and tear on mine.

Plus, sometimes they feed me lunch. I like that part! So I always tell them that can come out of my pay, too. They usually don't, but it's okay to me if they do.

Oh, and whoever said that teenage girls are less messy than teenage boys was lying. A lying liar who liieeeeesss. She's a really cool kid, but by god, that room required more wading than cleaning.

On the other hand, I'm pretty sure that's what my room looked like when I was 14, too.
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WARNING: LONG ENTRY, with some self pity mixed therein. Though not hypomanic. That spell seems to be breaking.

I've eaten a bit of humble pie this morning. And it doesn't taste particularly great.

Some of you may remember a few years ago I contacted David's ex-girlfriend. The truth of the matter was that I was in a bit of awe about her.

See - she's smart. She's, like, Sherlock-smart. Brilliant. She's a scientist. Like, an actual, honest-to-god, works in a lab scientist. And David had always spoken highly of her. Not in a way that cut ME down, just in a very well manner of her.

Turns out she had some guest blogs on some of the feminist websites I frequented. I found this fascinating. Her and I sharing similarities?

So I messaged her to tell her that I admired her. It was a rambly message, as is my way, and I reassured her that David had not prompted the message.

I was not prepared for what I got back.

She was not rude. She was not mean. She was not a bitch. She briefly alluded to the abuse she had suffered at David's hands, begged me to get help if I didn't see that he had changed, and then blocked me.

It was the blocking I should have paid attention to. Why didn't I pay attention to that? I'm not at liberty say what he did to her. But it was bad.

That was four years ago. 2010. For some reason, Livejournal has either deleted the message or else buried it within the thousands of back-comments. But she was NOT rude or mean at all. I really feel the need to stress this.

I understood. Once she told me what happened, I understood why she'd blocked me. And I put what she said in a little file in the back of my head and kept it there. And I didn't go to her journal or message her again.

Until a few days ago.

It did not go well )
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And there is always plentiful 'splaining on Livejournal.

I couldn't find my keys yesterday morning.

I couldn't find them so I called in late. What I did not do was follow the specific call-in order. There is a set of phone calls and messages you have to leave for various managers.3 AM means long entries )
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I just got fired.

I called my boss at Super 8 and asked for my old job back. She's going to call me shortly. I don't even know if I can go back.

This year has sucked so hardcore. Depression, the trouble with David, insomnia. Having to drop my math class, trouble with Cassie, quitting my job at Super 8. More insomnia. Math class terrors. And even more insomnia. And I just got fired.

Fuck this year. Fuck 2012 and the horse it rode in on.
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People say everything has a price. One action comes at the loss of another. A brief encounter comes from turning left, the conversations that might have been gained by turning right are gone forever. Even moreso, the act of saying one thing inevitably leads to another. My words, spurned by emotion, are bound to cause emotion for another. This is the price - I cannot act in a vacuum. No matter how genuine my experience, it can still get lost in the process of translation. And no matter how genuine another's experience, it can get lost in the translation back.

But I didn't come here to talk about what I've lost.

I'm coming here to talk about what others have lost. I'm coming here to talk about the price my words cause others to pay. I'm coming here to talk about the fact that if conversation, experience, life lived is some kind of currency, then I need to learn how to make change, because damnit, I still don't know what the fuck I am doing.

Two paragraphs in and I still haven't said what I need to say. Surprised? I'm not. I'm so good at doing that, convincing people that it's poetry when in all reality, it's just me circumventing the point. I re-read what I'd written yesterday and think "Yes, that's lovely. And well written, capturing a beautiful moment. But also, perhaps, a ridiculously lofty moment...." I don't doubt the words on the page or their intention. What I doubt today is the honesty in sharing those moments.

I thanked Pamela for her support concerning my abortion. As David says, I was thinking about it from my experience only, and thus her return message was a shock: She says she is glad she was able to help, but still grieves for the path, the possibilities, not taken. I had not considered just exactly what my words would stir up. In my eagerness to convey my gratitude, I was thoughtless in bringing up a painful memory for her.

I'm pretty good at that, too. Being thoughtless.

I am indignant, mortified, and embarrassed that I brought up the subject with her. I kick back to another recent memory - apologizing to WG, which made him so uncomfortable in and of itself that he fell silent in between some truly furious-texting-speeds. And another, thanking the temperature person when to do so may have crossed some lines as well. (It's hard to be specific while needing to be as vague as possible. Just take my word for it, even the act of thanking this person may have been too familiar a move.)

I tried to do the right thing. I obviously did not.

And so I'm confused. Again. I have been taught - and hold fiercely onto - this idea that when you wrong someone, you apologize. And when they have helped you, you thank them. I learned this from my recovery, from my healing, and dear God I do not want to be any other way. I do not want to be one of those people who isn't responsive to what others around her do. I have survived my life by learning the grace of apology and gratitude. I know this. I live by this. I believe in this.

But it's evidently something that I need to learn....how not to do? How to do differently? Do I just accept that people are going to be wierded out by it and not worry about it? Do I change what I am doing, hoping to ease the strangeness these admittances obviously cause? Or am I just not thinking clearly about the way my words will affect others?

Do I even need to keep my side of the street clean? Do other people do this, or if they do it differently, how do they do it? Is the justification and peace I gain from that worth the discomfort of others? Because I do gain peace from it. And I would not want to give it up. It is part of what I believe makes me a good person.

But it is also a part of what creeps people out.

There is a price to be paid for transparency. I pay it and I understand and am okay with paying it.

I just don't know if it's okay to make others pay for it, too.
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I want to write something brilliant this evening. Something that will stand on its own, something that people will take notice of and say "That's it! That's good writing!" I'm pretty sure that writing will not come tonight, but it's a nice enough thought.

*sigh* I have tried starting this entry out four times now, each time deleting the paragraph because it sounds too whiny and self-indulgent. I am tired and ate too much candy with Pat. Which means I probably am now suffering from a sugar crash. It's awesome - I can eat all the candy I want now that I'm an adult. What's not so awesome is that my body just doesn't have the capacity to process it the way I could as a kid. Such a cruel trick!

Oh, fuck it. I'm tired and tonight I just wish I weren't so goddamn creepy. Writing yesterday's entry made me feel a lot better about the damage I did, but it also brought to light just how dysfunctional I am. Not that I really need to go very far to look for reminders of how dysfunctional am, but still. I just wish that I had the same kind of filter that other people do, or that they didn't have filters so that way they'd be just like me.

I don't mean to sound full of self-pity. I just realized how easy it is for me to disregard boundaries and societal norms. I know why I'm this way, duh. I'm pretty fucking tired of analyzing that - 20 years in the making of outlining all that shit. I've got a handle on that part of it.

The truth of the matter is, though, even when I'm trying to be normal, or at least graceful, I still come off as too familiar, taking liberties where I ought to be standing far, far back, and in general just assuming that people want what I have. I sometimes wonder if even the good things I try to do - thanking people, asking them to open up about their pain, that sort of thing - is really that good a thing at all. Surely if it were good, more people would do it. So it's not entirely good. Then again, that is only me forcing my ideas onto those around me, and that's definitely not good. The way I do things is often dead wrong and in the end, the only way I have to comfort myself is to say "Well, is that the first time you've humiliated yourself? No. Will it be the last time? No. So learn and get over it."

Best intentions and roads to hell and all that.

Okay, so I am feeling sorry for myself tonight. I'll get over it. Maybe tomorrow I will be able to write this all out in a more eloquent fashion. So much for brilliant writing tonight. Lesson learned: Don't open the Livejournal window if you've eaten five Reeses Piece's Easter Eggs, half a bag of jellybeans, and three cans of soda.

Nope, don't do that shit again, Teressa.
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Last night I told David that once, just once, I'd like to wake up at 7 AM. That'd be sleeping in on an unprecedented level. I can't even remember the last time I woke up at 7. But there is no going back to sleep in the AM, it is once I'm up, I am up.

Oi.

The school tuition part was taken care of last night, thank you Michael. Monies will be yours as soon as loan gets in. Now today to school to make sure that the loan was not sent back. (I'm guessing it was, if nothing else because that would be the most inconvenient thing that could happen at this point.)

What to write about at 4 in the morning? That's usually not a problem. This morning it is. Another oi. I want to write something profound or at least pithy - nothing comes to mind. Gr. I'll just do what I always do when I can't think of what to write, sit here with the window open and spit out sentences about how I wish I had something to write about.

Whatta life.

Well, actually, speaking of Life....I told David yesterday morning that I would like a life of comfort. One that's not such a struggle. One in which I don't have to worry about things like gas or milk or smokes. Where the basics weren't constantly in jeopardy. I had that with Pat, not anymore. And that is, in it's own way, okay, life situations change, I get that.

Well, while cleaning rooms yesterday I threw out the idea of comfort and decided I just wanted a life of dignity. Specifically, one that didn't include wiping down toilets and throwing away other people's food and soda cans.

I need a new job. I started housekeeping at 22 - I am now nearly 30. I'm getting too old for this. And it's not like retail is much better, but it's got to be at least a little better. Besides, with the long-term affects of living life the way I did when I was younger (dangerously and with great carelessness towards my body), I find that housekeeping leaves me terribly sore and tired at the end of the day.

I didn't want to be doing housekeeping at this age. So the point would be to not be doing housekeeping at this age. It's a fine job for those who like it (and I do, in the end, like it.) It's just that I'm having a very hard time keeping up with it lately.

I try to look at it as still having traded for a better class of worries. Ten years ago I was worried I'd look in the mirror and see a junkie. That is no longer the case. But ten years is ten years and that's a long time. I want to have yet another turn towards a higher class of problems.

And I know the only way to do that is to do that. So here's hoping. Besides, I really, really want a job where I can get my nails done. Like, really want that.

We all want better lives for ourselves. I guess as I get older, I'm realizing that cliche, the one that goes along the lines of time running out and needing to do things to change what happens in the meantime. When I was younger, things just happened (as they do). Age changes that - and for the better, really. It's nice to have a little more control over your own destiny.

It does, however, require more work.

Time to get over my lazy ass and start in on that.
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Holy shit - David's ex-girlfriend got a guest blog entry on one of my favorite feminist sites, a site that I've quoted and had several posts here inspired by. This site has been on my toolbar for months now, so to see this was like....whoa.

It's a really good read and I want to comment but I'm a little afraid it might look really weird. I have no idea if she knows who I am, but she is an active member of Livejournal and I have looked at her LJ. (So if she has ever checked her "My Guests" options, she'd have seen me.) I do not want to creep her out, and David has understandably asked in the past that I not attempt to friend her or anything. (I get that - it'd weird me out, too, if David and Patrick suddenly found themselves talking to each other on a regular basis.)

Still.....Her and I read the same blogs? With frequency? And share very similar opinions on some of the most visceral issues for us?

I'm both flattered and totally weirded out at the same time.

(To be perfectly honest, what I really am is intimidated. From what I've heard from David - he speaks well of her, a lesson that I could learn concerning my ex's - and seen of her writing, she is a million times smarter than me and a million times more ambitious than I am. )

Wow. And whoa. And what pseudo name do I choose to comment on her entry with, if I should comment at all?

EDIT: Lesson learned: Do NOT talk with the ex-girlfriend. No, she wasn't a bitch, or mean or rude to me or anything. But nothing good came of it. Aside from ruining David's night concerning what she brought up, I'm pretty sure I ruined her night, too.

Argh. Not what I'd intended.
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I managed to snag my first (and I'm guessing my only) A this semester on the most recent philosophy test. This pleases me greatly. It gives me the confidence to think I just may be able to pull through the final. At this point, my prayer is to pass all of my classes with a C. It may not be the greatest of grades, but it would be an improvement over the last year's worth of grades. (Not to mention it would be enough to keep my school loans coming in. This is important.)

I'm really enjoying the hell out of WOW.

I've made an active decision to cut down on smoking. It's mostly the issue of smoker's cough and a growing dislike of constantly being short of breath. (And, okay, the worry about premature wrinkling. Vanity is a go-go!) As it stands, my usual habit is to smoke somewhere in the ballpark of over 2 packs a day. The last three days have seen me at 1 and a half packs a day.

Mornings are the hardest. I can easily go through half a pack in the first three hours of being awake without even realizing it. And I rarely smoke one cigarette, it's always two or more in a row. So for now, outside of the mornings (for which my goal is five when I wake up), I'm making a concerted effort to merely smoke one at a time. It's also been a dawning realization that I have a bit of a smoking fetish - at least that I find others smoking both sexy and alluring (especially in photography) and as I don't know how (or if) I need to change that, it is going to make things a little harder.

I'm nowhere near the point of wanting to quit entirely. The last time I tried that (back in '05) saw me nearly losing my mind and honestly, I'm just not that brave. But cutting my smoking intake in half seems doable.

I've been smoking for thirteen years now - realizing that blew me away. That's nearly half my life. And I don't want to be one of those 60 year old women who look dried out and faded due to their smoking, and I don't want to be out of breath forever. Am I worried about cancer, or having to smoke through a hole in my throat? Not particularly (which is kind of sad). But I suppose any worry that prompts a reduction in smoking is valid enough, and so, here I am, making a public announcement that I'd like to not be a chimney.

Besides, I'm realizing just how badly my apartment reeks of cigarette smoke. It also occurred to me that when it comes to how my friends have described me that the word "chain-smoker" is also in the top three listings. I don't want to be that guy. Two to three years ago I was at a single pack a day - I didn't smoke in the house or in the car, which was a huge part of it. I'm not giving up smoking in the house or car this time around, but the active stress that caused the leap in smoking is over (leaving Patrick and the stress of Cassie's addiction) and therefore, my coping skills for those stresses need to change as well.

As the wiser people in past recovery have told me, two and a half packs a day was "a coping skill that has outlived its usefulness. Time to try something different."

So here's me, saying I'm trying something different.

Besides, it'll save me some money. At this juncture in my life, that's totally a plus, too.
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It's one of those periods.....the kind that make me wonder if I'm feeling so horrible because it's a hard month or if it's because I am actually getting sick (or staying sick, in this case) while I just happen to be on my period. The nausea is reaching critical in the last 24 hours, and it's not even the kind of nausea that allows for actual vomiting and thus actually feeling better afterwards. I want to get back on the Depo, but getting together the money for a Pap Smear and then for the shot itself seems daunting. I'm going to call around to some local clinics, maybe I can get it all in on one of those sliding fee scales.....

I think I figured out part of the problem with my Philosophy class. It's a lecture and note-taking class, but yesterday we had a class discussion. And from that discussion, I walked away feeling as if I understood much better the concepts being presented. I had this problem with an intro to Poly Sci class during my first semester, which was also a lecture and note-taking class. I passed with a B, but it took a lot more work to retain the information. So a study group just may be the answer to passing *this* class.

Oh ye finding out the learning styles in which you learn best, fun fun fun.

I'd love to be called off from work this morning, but I won't be. Not so much because we will have lots of rooms to clean, but because I feel terrible and I'm on my period. The worse I feel, the harder the period, the more likely I am not to get a day off. Why it happens that way, I don't know, but it always does. Murphy's Law reigns supreme.

Yesterday during the kid's visit, we watched part of "The Land Before Time" (the first one, which was amazing - and the only one worth watching) and I rediscovered my love for Don Bluth films. I know there's a big preference war between Bluth and Disney - I land solidly in the Bluth camp. We watched so many of his movies growing up, and it's why I have an adoring love for Dom DeLuise. (Dom's voice immediately makes me feel loved, safe, and warm. A happy Pavlovian response. I was sad when he died.) I also found that children's movies can still make me bawl like a kid with a skinned knee - when Littlefoot's mother died, I could not hold back the tears. It made me feel a little silly, but in it's own way, was very comforting, too.

I know part of the nausea is induced by the unhealthy amounts of Ibuprofen that I consume during my period. (5-8 pills, several times a day). But it's that or else be racked with cramps that literally bring me to a fetal position, gasping and dizzy, for hours at a time. And yet, when I take care of the pain, there's this to deal with, and it's just as awful as the cramping. Cassie says I should be checked out for endometriosis. I'm thinking about how to do that, sans insurance and sans disposable income for said check-out. Uterine problems run rampant in my family, and while I've been lucky not to have any so far, this isn't to say that I don't have any now. I also think the medications - while shortening the amount of time I actually bleed - make the symptoms worse. Periods like this, I mentally beg God to let me find a few stray Hydrocodones in the empty rooms that I clean.

Or heroin. But with my luck, I'd just go into dry heaves. (Apparently heroin makes a person throw up. A lot. What kind of a fun drug is that? Oi. And yes, I know I'm a recovering addict. No, I do not feel guilty for taking heavy painkillers when I'm in heavy pain. I can't take more than one at a time anyways, or else I get sick and start throwing up, thus defeating the purpose of taking a pill in order to ease physical illness.) I know someone women drink to help with the cramps, but even if I could drink without bringing my life to a screeching halt, the idea of walking around tipsy makes me feel even more nauseated.

So it's this, being sick and knowing that while it will ease, it'll come back again next month. It's like the world's most goddamn persistent flu, and it's one that you can't really take any time off to nurse it. (I do occasionally call in sick to work for it, but I always feel terrible about it, because it's my fucking period, something that happens every month. I should be able to handle this.) My immediate boss is pretty sympathetic to it (I'm always honest about it when I call in for my period), and thank God for that.

And I've just spent the majority of this post talking about my period. Like I do, every. single. month. Argh. I mean, after so many years of writing about it, what else is there to say, or to comment on, or to comfort? Not much. But it still doesn't stop me from talking about it.

So until the next post, and then predictably another round of posts like this next month, I sign off, looking at my phone and willing it to ring for a day off.
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Dreams are big topic on my f-list today, and I am no exception. Some kind of a dream in which I was arguing theology, defending my beliefs, trying to explain that no, I am not Christian.

Bizarre.

I talked with Cassie, and it was the first conversation in over a year that did not leave me feeling as if I should spend the next hour banging my head on the wall. That was nice. We decided that we'd like to see each other, and I think I'm ready to do so.

Something different about this phone call: She did not, in any way, say or imply something that I "should" be doing. She didn't say that I needed God, or needed to trust her, or that she was a completely new person, or any of the things that previously enraged me. There was an actual sense of humility in her voice, and a sense of....open-mindedness towards what I had to say. This is new, and very encouraging. We had a little bit of shop-talk (my term for talking about 12 step program work), talked about movies, and in general, had a good conversation.

We briefly touched upon the point that both of us have resentments towards each other, and that now may not be the time for us to get into it. I understand - very early recovery is tenuous enough, adding onto that is not always a good thing. David reminds me to remember that as I'm going to try and not give her shit about it, to not take any shit about it from her.

This is also important.

Yesterday was a panic-and-veer-back-into-faith, off and on, all day sort of venture. Thanks to the divorce paperwork, I'd mistakenly thought that I needed to wait to apply for my loan. I did not have to, as it turns out, and waiting has caused some problems - the biggest being that I need a cosigner for my loan.

I swallowed my pride, called my father, and he will help me with this.

It's frustrating in that I am trying to live a life without needing finical help, and especially his. That is not possible this time around. I also had to ask Patrick to put down 1/3 of my tuition, as thanks to waiting, I came up to the payment deadline without any sort of money to keep my enrollment in order to qualify for my loan to begin with.

I want to live a life free of obligations, at least monetary to those around me, and school is the ticket to that life, and yet in order to do so, I need their help. It is mad frustrating and in many ways, very disheartening. I am trying to do the right thing, and there are still so many hoops to jump through.

So in the way of reassurance and self-comfort, I kept telling myself that every step had worked it's way out so far, so will the rest. I was worried about the appeal - that went through. I was worried about the tuition payment - that is taken care of. I was worried about a cosigner - that was also taken care of.

Even if I don't like how those things worked out, they did and that reaffirms the faith in the process. I've said for years that Life has never dropped me on my ass, and this is part of that. If I can connect the bad things that have happened into a picture, so can I for the good things, and if I do that, then Life will follow through.

At least I now qualify for a Pell Grant, and the office said that there is a process that will allow me to readjust my tax returns to account for my new (and much poorer) finical status. This is also very reassuring.

In the next week, I am also having to swallow my pride and head to the welfare office to apply for foodstamps. I've been off welfare for years, and so having to return to it is a bit of a blow to the ego. On the other hand, I'd appreciate not having to choose between food and gas on any given week, so it's off to see if I can get help from them.

It so often seems that the process of "getting back on your feet" is less actually getting back onto your own feet and more often the process of allowing others haul you to your feet. It's frustrating. (I use that word a lot. But it's the perfect word for it.)

As Cassie is learning humility, so am I.
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I think I'm getting used to working so much. I was given a day off after 8 straight days, and yet going back after that didn't seem so terrible. How strange.

Yesterday was the birthday of a friend of David's, and so we got down to the coffee shop/bar that his friend works at in order to wish him happy birthday and kick back a few cups of warm joe. It was a bit of a curiosity tour, with lots of 18-23 year olds (thanks to being in a community college, the people David and I know are often either just under or else in their very early 20's) dressed to the nines in their ties and button down shirts and cute skirts and dresses and putting on shows for each other. The conversation was good, everyone was friendly, and the coffee was delicious.

That always helps me be less nervous around people I don't know.

I had been dreading this particular outing for the entire day before, thinking it would be more of a drunken bash than anything else (and while those parties rarely make me feel like drinking, often being the only sober person gets really, really boring and irritating) - but no, most people were sipping on their beers and more than one person was drinking coffee. This also helps me be far less nervous than I would otherwise feel.

It makes me wonder about those years, because in the posturing and obvious attention-getting behavior that many of them showed, (traits of youth, something I can't hold against them) I recognized myself in that. I was extremely all about the "Look at me! Look at me!" when I was younger, and still am in many ways to this day. It's compelling, a little embarrassing, and very funny all at the same time. It makes me wonder what aspects of my actions I will look back at in another ten years and find myself concluding were driven by my wanting to be the center of attention.

If age has provided anything at all, any respite in the storm that life is, it is that as serious as I think I and the way I act now is, that in ten years I will look back and giggle at my own ridiculousness. As I will ten years after that, and so on and so forth.

It's oddly reassuring, and I am utterly grateful that I have reached the point where I know that. It helps ease the drama of in-fighting between friends, the insecurity of how I look to others (in which, to be perfectly honest, is still a very strong force inside of me, I'm just realizing how little weight the answer carries as I get older), and gives me some space to not only allow the gaffes of what people my age go through, but the gaffes of what people their age go through, too.

As it was, dressed down comparatively in my fedora and tie, jeans and a tank top, I didn't feel the need to run about and shout, and instead held down a chair outside and talked quietly with the few people I did know. I had a surprisingly good time due to being able to let go of needing to be seen, and this is something I need to remember.

Besides, as funny as it is sometimes, and as uncomfortable as being reminded of the silliness of my own youth can be sometimes, it's good to be around younger people. Their energy is often charming and fun to be around, and as much as it surprises me on occasion, they can have pretty damn astute observations in life.

David and I did head home before midnight - I had to work, we were both somewhat tired, and while the crowd did not frighten us, we both do better in smaller gatherings. We are, after all, getting a bit older.
quirkytizzy: (Default)
My therapist and I had a good, long discussion on the topic of loss and it's effects. It was the word, "loss", that made everything click and make sense. So often that's the way it works for me - once I find the word that fits, then everything else falls into place and I am able to look at the situation with some semblance of calm.

The loss of family, of a home, the loss of the highs and lows previous to medication, and more than anything else, the loss of the previous self that I thought I was. The loss of routines, of definitions, of words that had meaning, and the hole that remains in place of those things. The loss of a plan, of goals. I shared that when people share suggestions about a "plan", what they talk about are careers and that is something I already am working on.

What I am in need of is a plan for my emotional life.

She asked what I wanted. I simply said "To be happy. To be content. To wake up in the morning and be happy with who I am."

A large task, to be sure, but sharing about that diminished the panic and terror immeasurably. As did sharing the issue with David. She'd said that it was absolutely natural to respond to all of these losses with the want to leave the place they all occurred in, and so long as I did NOT cut and run, the urge would still be normal and not necessarily mean bad things. A "give yourself permission to feel one thing but act healthily despite it", sort of thing. The urge to cut and run dissipated and my legs and feet stopped aching with the need for movement.

Your responses, in the care and suggestion, helped more than I can say. Each of you is invaluable to me, thank you so much for reaching out when I am lost. Words fall short, but please know I am moved. All things said are currently stewing in my mind, finding places to fit into what I know and what I should do.

David also related that the urge to leave Kansas City intensified to it's peak the day the snowstorm came upon us, just as I had started to celebrate the return of spring. That was a larger factor than I'd originally realized.

My father called yesterday, asking if I'd news about Cassie. I'd told him that I had no news and no intentions to collect any news about her. The conversation got heated, and when I'd said "It's her choice to live or die", he'd responded with "Then you can say that at her funeral."

I'd shrugged and said I guess I would, and he hung up.

It prompted some dreams, restless waters, and of a family that I was close to, a family of health and good support, suddenly abandoning their home and leaving me with the arduous task of searching the world for them. The choice to look for either them or my sister, who had gone missing at the same time. I chose to look for the other family. Again, the symbolism loses significance in face of the directness of the dream.

I don't like to be this cold. In fact, it almost hurts in this strange way. But I don't know any other way to approach it. If it is about safe - and it is - then it is what I have to watch for. Cassie has been the catalyst, but maybe it is not all bad.

I imagine this will soon be the end of me speaking to any member of my family, the steel pipe that breaks the camel's back.

Leave the lost and dead behind
All is lost again, but I'm not giving in
Watch the end through dying eyes
And I am not proud, cold-blooded faith

I will not bow, I will not break
I will not fall, I will not fade
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I got a second job, working part time at my veternarian's office. I'm not sure what I'll be doing, as I go in today for the first day's training, but at this point, the extra money is duly welcomed. I'm a little worried as to how the scheduling will affect my ability to do schoolwork, but I'll talk to the ladies at the vet today and if we can't keep to 3 days a week then I will have to pass. It pays minimum wage, but all I'm looking for is enough to cover my cigerrates (60 bucks a paycheck, which is often almost 1/3 of my paycheck) and I'm happy.

Speaking of smokes - I am not the most hardcore smoker in the world, as evidenced by the fact that I actually threw up yesterday while cleaning a room that had been so permeated with cigerrate smoke that it literally made me ill. I smoke two packs a day, so for this to happen was quite the shock.

It made the start to a day that coasted along in a bad mood, but eventually perked up thanks to time spent with the David and watching the surprisingly entertaining movie "The Hangover." (I usually don't really enjoy films like that, male stupidity is not something I need entertain myself with via the big screen) The big kicker of the day was finding out that due to a negative balance that I'd left unattended in my bank account for several months, the account was closed down and I am blacklisted from opening another account at that credit union.

I cried.

Partly the tears came from the fact that I was initially worried I wouldn't get the three grand from my school loan (needed for such superfluous things such as rent and fixing my car, which currently has no brakes), but when I was cut a check for the amount and told I couldn't have another account with them, I was temporarily thrown into what I call "Can't Do A Fucking Thing Right, Teressa"-ville.

"Can't Do A Fucking Thing Right, Teressa"-ville is usually reserved for moments when I have to face consequences for screwing up something that I should know by now. Often times it's real life things, such as handling bank accounts, or how to properly file for and drop classes, or taxes, or any number of things that most people my age have down with flying (or at least nonchalant) colors by now.

I do not have these things down. Granted, the reasons are often quite excusable, such as I spent the time most people learn these things engaged in a battle for my very survival, but the end result is that reguardless of wether or not I should have learned these things, the responsibility of being an adult now rests on my adult shoulders, and so do the consequences.

I lamented to David about it always being my way of having to learn things the hard way, but it seems to be the way it always has been and always will be. In the future, as I always do when something like this happens, I vow to pay more attention.

In the end, we took the check, cashed it, and are going to open another bank account after putting money down for rent. Things turned out okay, and really as far as consequences go, this is extremely mild (at least for me), and lunch and just general pal-around time with David did wonders to improve my mood after that.

I am very excited for my Mass Media class this semester. I'm retaking it after flunking it two semesters ago (when I left Patrick I pretty much stopped going to class. It was only through David and Charles's dragging me - sometimes literally - to my Science Fiction Literature class that I passed that course) with a different teacher and WOW - this guy knows how to teach a class. Unlike my last teacher, who was very quiet spoken and concentrated mostly on lecture, he is big on discussion and controversy. We just finished watching an episode of "All In The Family" (The Archie Bunker Show) to talk about the media's role in popular (or unpopular) cultural beliefs! This class is going to be AWESOME.
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"Toward", as written by my friend here on LJ, [livejournal.com profile] ravenlake

To those that I love


I will tell you that I am afraid, and despite my attempts at courage and naturalness, I find myself posing half of the time. I am ambitious and proud, my ego is frail, and I long to be settled and grateful and earthy. I am all of this on one side of me, and can I say, as I try to make myself worth what you weigh in for me, I can't tell if I'm doing it the right way or all wrong, can't tell my blindspots from my left, my mistakes from my right. Will you forgive me for not being around? Because I do want to be. Can I say that I am mending breaches and tears all at once, and while I ask not to be excused, know that I am not ungrateful, just maybe a little foolish, and a little blind. And this is addressed to you, and others--that the memory of you beside the window, or laughing hard with everyone else, or squeezing my hand, or having a graceful sense of responsibility--but most of all, the proximity of all our faces-- has made it harder, yet all the more valuable, to step outside a worn world of shadows, into the dazzling sun.


Becoming
as it were
two halves of five quarters each.
Numbers rarely make sense to me
but more willing than ever
to line up the columns


This year has brought with it new meaning to the words "learning how to open up." I'd always thought I was the most open person I know - after all, wasn't I utterly free with the information of almost every trauma of my past? Wasn't I outgoing? Wasn't I straight-forward and didn't I say just about everything that crossed my mind?

And I was/am all of those, though with the appropriete disclosure lesson of the last few years, perhaps slightly less of the first. And yet, this summer, almost everyone around me was begging me to talk to them, to let them know what was really going on, because I wasn't.

It came to mind that while I'm terribly comfortable talking about the places I've been, I'm less comfortable talking about whatever is going on inside of me at the present. Half the time it's because I can't discern the exact shape of the landscape myself and because of that trying to communicate it comes out as a big tangled ball of crazy, frustrating both the person I'm trying to talk to and myself.

But I'm learning. And in this relationship, it's becoming more and more apparent that it is something to be learned. Patrick mostly went with the idea that if there was something I wanted to tell him, I would (and he was usually right, given the space my moodiness stills and I have to ramble about it), but with David, there is this want of his to be involved in the process. As frustrating as it is for both of us at times (clear communication is almost impossible for me in those times. At best, I can usually come up with long strings of words that I'm feeling and dimestore psychology for those feelings), it is something I'm learning to appreciate.

It is a new idea, that's for sure. It is, in part, the difficulty of this that propels me along to continue trying to do it. And it's risky, because when I talk from that space in me, I really do risk offending and hurting people from being unable to clearly say what I mean. Extremely risky, and thus even harder.

But maybe it's riskiness, it's difficulty, it's potential for disaster and loss, is what keeps me trying to do it right.

As Ravenlake said, it makes it harder, and thus, all the more valuable.....

What is your experience in these sorts of things? How do you untangle the moment and share clearly? How do you keep wanting to share? How does that process work for you???
quirkytizzy: (Default)
I'd woken up, or rather, dragged myself out of bed for work this morning, only to be called off 30 minutes later (after I was wide eyed and bushy tailed). I hate that. So instead of doing what I had wanted to do upon first awakening (which was crawl back into bed, totally ruined by the cup of coffee I'd already downed), I cleaned.

At least that was productive. And I put on sparkly nail polish. I know I'll regret in a couple of days (I always do, you have to practically sandblast the shit off) but for now, it's pretty and entertaining. I could pop LUNAR into the PS2, or wash my dishes, but for now, I'll just sit here and write and endlessly refresh the "Recent Posts" options here on LJ.

"And if I lose myself, look for me on the left...."

What do I want for Christmas? Mostly the intangible. Mostly things that are already showing signs of being present in my life, I just want them to hurry up.. Security. Stability - mentally as well as physically. The ability to not continually stick my foot in my mouth (come to think of it, as often as I do do that, maybe I should put flavored shoe laces on my list?), or else to be able to circumvent self-pity entirely and skip right on up to the strong and courageous parts.

I would like to be graceful for just one day and not knock over, trip over, break, drop, smash, smush, biff or otherwise negatively affect the space around me. Just for one day. I would like to be able to tap into the deeper, better wells of my writing and forever pen my words from there instead of from the maddeningly daily mundane. I would like to be comfortable in my own skin all of the time, and I would like to learn, once and for all, that I and the world around me do not have to constantly be at odds with each other. I would want to know myself and all of those around me, and I would want to know God.

Many things, if Christmas were as much of a miracle as people say it is, would be on my list.

I am a bit of a Scrooge. Since leaving Patrick, the holidays are again filled with dread and apprehension. I know I'm the adult now, and it is up to me to create those better holidays, but the old hurdles of what the holidays growing up were like are resurfacing. (I recently related to David the story of one holiday dinner where my stepfather threw a ceramic plate at my head. It was lucky I'd ducked or else I would have been in the hospital, as the plate lodged itself four inches deep into the wall behind me.)

But still, seeing Christmas lights fills me with a sense of peace and wonder and after all, who doesn't need more socks under the tree? And with the help of those who love me, and the new trick of trying to stay present in any given moment, maybe this year will be the year that Christmas again becomes something warm and inviting.

All's well that ends well, right?

Right.

FIRE!

Aug. 17th, 2009 09:45 am
quirkytizzy: (Default)
I bruised the crap out of my knee walking into a dresser this morning. My car caught on fire this morning due to overheating coolant and a massive oil leak. It's had no power for months. I then fell flat on my face on the way into school asking a girl about her bag and scraped up my other knee. I'm still edging towards homelessness. I owe people close to a grand's worth of money. I still haven't gotten my loan from school.

Anyone want to sponser a real to life charity case? Or win the lottery and give it all to poor little moi??? Or maybe just a lifetime supply of neosporin and bandaids?

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