Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Down Time

I am sick, sick, sick right now. Sore throat on Sunday quickly went to my lungs (lifelong asthmatic who recently became non-compliant with her medication regime and walked 2 miles on Friday despite having for several days what was clearly, in hindsight,  asthma related back pain) and fever by yesterday.

When I called to make an appointment to see my doctor, in itself is a victory (I'd usually wait until I was sicker - like close to needing to be hospitalized sick), the receptionist said the next available appointment was on the 31st. My response, without thinking about it, was "No. I'm having asthma issues and need to be seen today." This is another victory. While I'm feeling and acting a bit cranky because I'm sick, self-advocacy is NOT a skill I typically posess when sick. My doctors know, because I tell them, that when I call I really need them and they need to be exceedingly simple in their explanation of what to do - to essentially take charge of me. I completely lose that ability when my lungs have gone fully awry.

I've been treated by a specialist for these lung flares over the past 10 years - this is the first time I'm seeing my new general practitioner (and I saw her colleague) for this. I was super scared of making the switch and the potential for having to take responsibility for my care. The specialist just gets it, lung flares are her daily business. For the first 35 years of my life, most doctors, like me, didn't get to know me much less my lungs, so I suffered more than I needed to for much longer than necessary.

When I was in the room yesterday, the doc knew exactly what I needed and gave it to me without any input from me. I love her so much for that. For getting it. For taking care of me when I can't/don't/won't do it for myself.

The powerful drugs she prescribed are coursing through my veins and helping me feel better already. I should be feeling like a superhero soon.

I'm reminded that it's important to be honest with yourself and your doctor about your needs. To communicate what you know to be true about your body and behavior. It's scary as fuck, to be honest and vulnerable. Especially when that bitchy voice in the back of your head is so effective at making you believe that no one else will try to meet your needs, so why try...

Yep. I regularly fall off the wagon and become non-compliant with my medication regime. I don't know exactly why it happens. But I'm working on that - figuring out why and getting/staying on track. I appreciate that my doctor('s office) is willing to be my partner in this. It's good to know I've got people on my team - all I need to do is say it out loud, to fully own that I need to ask for help with my lungs, food, exercise, whatever. For fucks sake, I can't do it alone and clearly this time lying in bed has been important so that I can understand this and let it settle into my bones.

Monday, December 15, 2014

Placebo?

Today marks two weeks of being on the antidepressant Venlafaxine (Effexor). The lowest dose possible taken each morning with food. Here's what I've noticed:

About an hour after I take it I get a bit "heady". Spacy, tired, or something along those lines. Hard to describe. And a bit of dry mouth that lands on my throat and sinuses. Makes me feel a bit "gaggy".

It all wears off by mid morning and I'm able to focus on the activities of the day with more focus than usual. With the exception of the second or third day of the medicine in which I had an intense bout of anxiety that lasted nearly an hour, I'm calm, able to organize my thoughts and words, interested in leaving the house, and in relatively zero pain!

Well, I am a bit uncomfortable from being constipated but that's nothing new. My colon has long held on too tight.

So, I don't lack emotional fortitude. It's an honest-to-goodness physical-brain thing. Which is at the same time comforting and disconcerting.

My doctor has said I don't need to take the medicine forever. My mind is already planning on when to try to get off of it. My other mind says slow down and ride the wave for a minute. Let your body rest. Let your mind find some new coping tools. Let it sink into your bones. Slow down!

Placebo or not, it feels good.

Friday, December 5, 2014

So Far

So good.

I've had dry mouth induced nausea each day for a couple of days. It lasts a while but eventually calms down. Nite to self: Increasing water intake should help.

Yesterday I had a bit of a panic for no apparent reason so I took a break alone instead of pushing through. It took a long time to come down.

I'm as tired as usual but the pain may be less than it was earlier this week. Could it be working? Could it be working that fast? 

Mornings haven't been as painful and I've had thoughts of what I need/want to do in the morning. Follow through, not as much but maybe on the uptick?!

Today I'm writing while I test the couch position that is most common, super uncomfortable and always makes me hurt when I get up. So far, my knees aren't screaming at me.

Okay, I should get to my morning.

😊

Tuesday, December 2, 2014

The Plunge

The pain I've been experiencing for some time now has reached its tipping point. Third visit to the doctor in less than a year for continuing leg pain and now joint pain feels a bit hopeless. Hopeless isn't the right word but it's all that comes to mind.

It's an antidepressant and is very often used to treat myalgia, in this case, the diagnosis. And you, my dear readers, are well aware that depression could possibly be the culprit as well. I openly admitted to the doctor that depression is a real likely thing. If I'm honest, it's probably *the* thing - I'm farther down the rabbit hole of disinterest, doing less than the bare minimum at home and squandering any free time I do have with tv or listening to stories or isolating myself than I can remember ever being before. Seeing it here is kinda frightening and forces me away from discounting it by saying "I'm not hopeless, or suicidal or feeling horrible all the time". On the other hand I'm not enjoying much. I'm sitting back watching life busy doing it's thing. There are some great moments for sure but moreover I feel disconnected and a bit numb. Yeah, that's *the thing* called depression, isn't it?

First dose of Effexor today. I noticed dry mouth and a headache.

I agreed to take the lowest possible dose and see if it works. Just like the IUD, if I don't like it or it doesn't work for me, I'll stop. It's quite simple, really.

I'll keep you posted.

Friday, November 7, 2014

Format Change

Due to a ton of spam comments, I've made a change. Sorry for any inconvenience. I do love your feedback and hope the change won't keep you from sharing your thoughts.

Sunday, October 19, 2014

Do Something for Yourself. Something You Love.

I've always been the one to capitulate to the needs of others, reinvent myself to suit their needs, to blend in, be silent to keep the peace. This is a problem for me because I don't consistently get my needs met.

The Nice Lady has recommended that when Twig gets incorrigible, mean or nasty, that I should leave and do something for myself. Something nice like buying flowers for myself (and not sale flowers).

It's been super hard to decide what to do, what I enjoy, what I like, and how to take care of myself. I have given up activities I enjoyed once upon a time, dropped ones I was trying to enjoy, and kept myself from exploring new ones. For financial reasons, mostly. But also because of space and time and family and work.

Excuses.

Since my temper tantrum last week where I sat in my fury and did nothing to make it easier for Wood or Twig to be near me - which I NEVER do (see first sentence above), I have felt closer to myself. 

Baseline self care...it's almost second nature for me these days to continue to eat at regular intervals, own my anger and not allow anyone to talk me out of my feelings, and ask for help from a friend. These are not things that have come easily to me - ever - they have been hard earned even after YEARS of soul-searching and gut wrenching work.

Wood told me Thursday evening that the Dr. knew immediately that I was angry with him and worried aloud that I wouldn't want to go back (I had left to pee and they talked ever so briefly).  In this session, I was forced to SEE MYSELF and despite "what matters" being the (not so great) delivery mechanism, it pushed me in a way I needed to be pushed.

I'm proud that I didn't give up my feelings. That I continued to feed and hydrate myself. That I voiced my feelings and didn't let other people off the hook. That I called a friend and over hot cocoa, had my feelings validated. Moved past being angry. And began listing activities and interests that I enjoy or want to enjoy - ways to take care of myself and nourish my soul.

Walking
Listening to stories - Podcasts - Snap Judgement, Strangers, 99% Invisible
(!) Photography - graffiti (!)
Crafting - taking art classes
Writing

And maybe most important, having hot cocoa with friends.

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

A N G R Y

The child psychologist said today that I need to:

-Let it go
-Decide what's important
-Accept that "this" is what kids do
-Have no emotions about it, whatever the fuck "it" is that's making me upset
-To not be angry

Guess what?

I am I N F U R I A T E D!

As in I want to demolish things, throw Shit, drive the car into people or a building. I want other people and things to feel my fury. F U R Y!

The fact that he suggested that what I want isn't important is the piece that has got me.

Is it not important that my kid (at age 10):

-flush the toilet after taking a dump?
-do homework?
-help around the house by putting HIS shoes, backpack, lunch, and other sundry items WHERE THEY BELONG?

What about:

-turning off the lights?
-closing the door when he is the last person in the house?
-brushing his teeth?
-wearing clean clothes?
-washing his hands after using the bathroom?

"Is it important?"

Fuck you.

It makes a difference to ME when he refuses to help with his stuff. I'm not a fucking servant. I DO NOT live to take care of his stuff because, well, he *doesn't feel like it* right now. So why expect him to follow through? Is it important? Not to him. So, you don't have to do anything if it's not important to you. Mom is the giving tree. The Boy just takes and takes. Great lesson.

This makes me want to move out and live alone.

Ramble, ramble. Sorry. Not sorry. My space.


Monday, October 6, 2014

Yes means Yes

I've kept a secret for 20 years. As in, haven't told anyone. Ever. Until today.

A little bit of shame was released in telling my best friend, Wood, that when I was a young undergrad, doing political work, I traveled across the state as a representative for my school, and what happened to me one weekend away.

The people I "worked" with had connections to other people that had come before us. Whenever there were opportunities to do so, the generations were connected.

I was "connected " to a guy who had a "big man on campus" type of reputation. One of those people that others either really liked or really didn't like. I didn't have any information at the time, except that my people really liked him.

For this particular weekend trip, my people asked if he could share my hotel room. I agreed. I'm supportive like that.

When he was in my hotel room, in my bed, and it was time to sleep, he didn't want to sleep. I didn't say "Yes", I didn't say "No".

He raped me.

I took the morning after pill as soon as I could once I got back to campus.  And told no one. It wasn't violent, it was a violation. One that I should have had the voice to say no to. I was ashamed to have agreed to let him stay in my room. It could have been prevented. By me.

So. There it is.

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Excellent, Amazing

These words are used to describe my performance at the new gig. I like the job. The work isn't very tough. I have headspace at the end of most days. It's nice to hear I'm doing well. Unfortunately, by the time I make it back to my desk, I'm questioning whether it's true.

Its time to channel Stewart Smalley - "You're good enough, you're smart enough and gosh darn it, people like you." I'll add in something about how I'm already perfect and mistakes are inevitable.

Believing it and living it: this is the lesson.

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Stretching

Many, many years ago I took a yoga class. During the class I felt rage - I wanted to scream, yell, throw things, and light the studio on fire - an intense rage! Today's lunchtime yoga class was the opposite of the rage filed class. Today's class was actually quite enjoyable, even calming. I plan on going back!

Monday, June 9, 2014

Judgment Card

Good morning and happy Monday! The new job begins today with startup paperwork and some scheduling... The judgment card came up for me this morning. Current phase is ending, be honest about past mistakes, and successes, dream big. I'm ready for new and I will make it GOOD!

Friday, June 6, 2014

Three Days

This is the third night in a row I've had insomnia. It had been at bay for a while. I'm not sure what shifted except maybe Wood being out of town or the ever elusive start date of my new job. Wood comes home tomorrow and the job, despite my new boss being fired today, starts Monday.

All in all, I've been well. There are moments of real clarity about my life, what's important, and what I want. I feel strong enough, most days, to manage my feelings and coach Twig through his. There are tough moments but they feel manageable. They don't have as much drain power that they did for a while.

Talked to another mom today who's has a very similar yet shorter duration Family-member-with-Alzheimer's move-in then out experience. And she described the crippling depression and anxiety that pummeled her once her mom moved out. It was so nice to hear someone talk about the exact feelings and responses I've had. Except she reluctantly decided to go the meds route.

There's so much more but I don't have the mental fortitude to continue to form semi-coherent sentences any more. It's 3:40am and I should try to get some sleep. G'nite.

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Shift?

Monday is the day I meet with my nice lady, Rebecca. She's great, save her insistence on my attending Alanon meetings. Whatever.

I read my last post to her. Out loud. It was weird because it was scary in a way that writing and knowing someone will read it isn't. We talked a lot about fear and trauma. It felt good.

Maybe because it was my birthday Monday was swell. And so was Tuesday and today (even though someone decided to use our garbage area as a toilet. Eww, just gross.). Something feels easier. I suspect tomorrow, at my old job's luncheon, will be good. Friday too.

I feel like I can have a thought, make a plan and have it stick. We shall see.

Monday, May 12, 2014

On Celebrating Mothers Day

This year, I'm not all that interested in celebrating Mothers Day. It makes me sad. It's not just this year. Honestly, Hallmark holidays don't do it for me. Valentine's Day - Blech. Christmas - ugh. Okay, I generally don't like any holiday that everyone is supposed to celebrate the same thing in the same way.

See, there are people out there that don't have a mom. Women who lost their children to stillbirth, disease, abortion, car accidents, abduction. Moms that don't do too hot-a-job at caring for their kids or others. Women who want desperately to be a mom but can't. Moms who are here but are no longer mothering.

My friend J's mom died a couple of weeks ago. I loved that woman even though in the nearly 20 years J and I have been friends, I never met her. And C, someone I'm not at all close to, only acquaintances with, really, lost her dog suddenly last week. That dog was a sweetheart that I had the pleasure of being around a couple of times. Maybe they're celebrating, I don't know. I don't think so. I feel their pain on mothers day. 

Wood always asks what I want for Mothers Day and my birthday. I don't want for much. Rarely can he shop for me knowing he's hit a home run. This year, I sent him a list. I must have, around the same time, complained that our sheets were in disrepair. So, I didn't get what was on my list. I got bed sheets. They are lovely and I am grateful. It's just that I rarely have a want much less say what I want so not getting it is disappointing.

It's a lot like taking grandma out to eat for Mothers Day only to have her be unhappy the entire time. There's so much we can't have, will never have again. It's hard to celebrate three bathroom trips, two walks and countless stares or misunderstanding and pity during brunch. Wood's hangover from it, despite the fact that I cared for her during this challenging meal, was exceedingly heavy afterward.

I feel Wood's pain. Twig's, Grandma's, mine, yours, everyone's.

The holiday feels contrived. Dishonest. Exclusionary.

We made a valiant effort but it's hard to celebrate loss when you're in the thick of it.

Sunday, May 11, 2014

Feelings oh-oh-oh Feelings

It seems like the primary feeling living inside me is sadness. I feel it so often for almost any reason - a television show, a kind gesture, a fleeting thought, idea or memory so faint I can't even conjure the image. It finds its way to the surface and before anyone knows what's happened the tears are flowing full force. They can be hard to stop.

Then there are the times I'm primarily overwhelmed. Suddenly, without notice, there is too much input, too much noise, I'm shaking and need everything to stop. I feel attacked, primarily at home, during simple conversation about things like what's for dinner. These interactions leave me feeling battered. It's like being afraid. Not the kind that is motivating. The kind that is exhausting and debilitating.

These feelings come and go. Some days I can power through the tasks on my list. Much of the time I feel weak. I definitely feel out of control. Not a reckless yell at people lack of control, more of an 'I'm not really sure that I can spend energy on anything except what's absolutely necessary and there's very little that's really important'. In this state its an 'I'm not in charge, I'm lacking a clear agenda, I'm close to unrecognizable, not sure of who I am and who I want to be' lack of control.

It's almost like a paradigm shift - a reevaluation of the value of every decision to do something, of every moment in time leading up to now and whether being productive, performing, or perfect is at all relevant. Because I feel irrelevant. And that's simultaneously the most freeing and discouraging feeling I've ever had.

My family notices these energy rifts and has taken to asking what's wrong. I'm not interacting with too many other people so it's not much of an issue. Time and space are what I need now. There's a lot of processing, reimagining, and stuff happening. I'm eating and sleeping a lot to keep up the energy needed to find and use my bravery.

Tuesday, May 6, 2014

Wahoo!

I got the job!

Whew.

Tuesday Highlights


Twig is in the median percentile for both height and weight. This may be the only place he takes the middle of the road.

*He chose* to have his wart frozen off instead of the lengthier option of lotion. He was brave and I was very proud of him.

He has eczema, brought on by lavender oil. Poor kid.

We went out to lunch today to celebrate his bravery. It was a nice time!

Peaceful Waiting

It's 3:30 am, that could be why I'm feeling peaceful. Wood's loud breathing woke me and the side effect was the theme of an intense dream, that I can't recall but only feel slightly, turned my brain on.

Leading up to this moment I've been weepy again. Feeling the tears bubbling at the surface, later becoming a waterfall, with little notice. My emotions are bigger than they have been in a while. I'm not "doing" much, remembering, thinking, acting very well. My intense hyperdrive energy has dwindled to a mere nothing. My heart and soul are trying to catch up with my body and mind - I'm not that person - I will not be that person - I'm beyond burned out - and it's okay!

Reinventing myself is proving a great challenge. It's weird to have few, if any, aspirations.

Still no word on the job. I will be okay either way, that much I know. Something will come along. I will be seen for the goodness in me. I will see it. I'm searching.

Saturday, May 3, 2014

Waiting

The birds are chirping, quite loudly. We are dog sitting for our neighbor. Baseball photos and a birthday party today.

I'm patiently waiting to get a job offer or let down for a great job opportunity I interviewed for last week. Trying to be patient, that is. Not knowing is rough. I'm trying to have faith that it will work out as it should.

Next week is my birthday and mothers day. For that I wait for a gift of a fitness tracker, a digital camera or a necklace. My goal is to find some inspiration to live rather than waiting to live. To risk and be brave instead of being bored and boring.

My energy is still rather low so waiting in stillness has a strong appeal. It will shift, as all things do.

Sunday, April 27, 2014

Body Fail - Plugging Along

Vacation! Here we are in New Orleans with friends. It's so lovely except my body is freaking out.

Of course my time of the month started and while my skin is much better than it was, it's still a bit upset with itchy dry patches that don't respond to my home made oil-salve. My gall bladder had a tantrum about all of the fried food we've been enjoying (its still got me on notice), I've got a pretty rash along my bra-line as well as where my thighs rub together and I've got a hemorrhoid.

But wait, there's more!

I fully expected the plantar fasciitis to be in full gear and it is. What I didn't expect was that I'd sprain my ankle on the same foot a week and a half before our walking trip. In addition to that pain, my legs/feet are swelling like balloons from the heat and all the walking we've been doing. I got some compression socks to help but it doesn't much. My left knee, the one with torn cartilage, started clicking with every step earlier and I just woke to hunger pains and what I think may be a bug bite on my Achilles. Itchy & Ouchie.

Our friends are the best. I fel like I'm complaining and that I've slowed the group down. The feel badly that I'm in such discomfort - and they only know about my foot/ankle. Despite all of it, it's lovely to be on vacation. I'll post a bit of our activities another time. My 4am hunger pangs have been addressed and I think, now that it's almost 5am, it's time to go back to sleep.

Another Interview

I wasn't offered the last job I interviewed for. Came close but clearly not the best candidate.

It's okay. As the saying goes, "one door closes, another opens". I was invited to interview for a job that pays better, is more interesting and has similar aspects as the other, and is PART-TIME!

For a minute when I got the invite, I worried that I'd have to ask for another date/time. We come home from our trip to New Orleans the day of the interview. I'll be super relaxed, that's for sure!

So, it's also good, I have some time to prepare myself. Set my questions, line up my answers, decide how to present myself. Over good music and food, with friends, in the heat and Sun! 

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Deserving

This weekend was tough. We allowed Twig a completely "down" day on Saturday in which he was able to choose to do what he wanted to do.

After opening day for baseball that included a very crowded opening ceremony and parade (I didn't attend) and lots of rain that got the first game of they year cancelled, he chose to put on his pajamas and watch tv.

All day.

Wood and I ran errands. We went to the Beauty supply, the hardware store, to get groceries and the running store to get me some new shoes. We came home in between stores to check in on and make sure he was okay, and to encourage him to get dressed and come out of the house with us. No dice.

Once the TV was off he was a raging jerk, being snarky, snotty, and downright disrespectful. And, despite our due diligence, it hasn't subsided since.

We screwed up.

We suffered for our enjoyment of the day because it was easier thank having the argument. Besides, he rarely has quiet days.

The concept of "deserve" comes up in discussions with my nice lady. As in the child must deserve, or at least work for, the privileges he gets. This is difficult for me - to balance punitive  and expectation. Especially when he's being rude and nasty for days in a row.

Because I allowed him to have his brain leached by crappy TV7 sit coms all day.

We're gonna get this right!

Sunday, April 6, 2014

The Theme

Self care is the theme.

Not exciting but necessary. I got new shoes and inserts yesterday.

Have been taking my breathing and skin meds - it's rather nice to be able to breathe and interesting to note that I'm able to tolerate a rather high threshold of poor respiratory (or skin or other) health. My foot hurts SO much though. I'm doing my best to work through the pain, do the exercises and stretching. I will also look for an ART (Active Release Method) therapist for massage. Apparently it is an effective treatment for the plantar fasciitis. Fingers crossed.

Friday, April 4, 2014

Tweak

I cried a fair amount today. Chaperoned a field trip, applied for a couple of jobs, met up with a former colleague turned friend, and took my asthma maintenance medication (for the first time in about a month).

I felt noticeably good at the end of the day because of the last two activities. Being with a grown up, talking about a variety of things, and being able to breathe made a  significant difference in my attitude.

Note to self: It's the little things that make life grand.

Thursday, April 3, 2014

So Special

In the past two weeks I've seen a gynecologist, dermatologist, podiatrist, and a pulmonologist. I have special needs.

Severe eczema of the lady bits, fast growing nothing to worry about skin growths on my face, plantar fasciitis of the left foot, and  lifelong crappy lungs. I've got a lung medication regimen for which I'm often non-compliant. I start and stop and start and stop. For reasons I'm not entirely aware of. I've been pondering this - why is self care so difficult? Because I don't love myself, I shouldn't need medication, I'm lazy and forgetful?

My soul hurts.

Many days, getting out of bed is difficult. People are exhausting. Cleaning the house isn't important; grocery shopping, cooking and laundry get done only when it's absolutely necessary and even then begrudgingly. I forget what I was doing, get lost going to regular places I always go to. My mind wanders off unpredictably, words don't make their way to my mouth. The couch has a stronger hold on me than just about anything. I have many, many good intentions. Very little follow through.

I see what I'm saying and experiencing, yet, I don't want to try anti-depressants. The dance of getting it right sounds downright exhausting. I have more shame about the possibility of needing medication for my mood than for the eczema of my lady parts. And I have a lot of shame about my lady parts. I struggle with not being strong, knowing full well that white-knuckling it isn't working. Not working, not getting much in the way of attention for the job applications I send out is a blow to my ego, too. I wonder if taking something will help me feel like myself again, help me to manage life on a day to day basis or cause more problems and have negative side effects.

My soul has been here before.

Cue Grey's Anatomy and the insight I think I need. It doesn't help me decide to go get meds. But it does remind me to have a bit of hope for the future.

"There's a stage you go through during childbirth; it's the toughest part, its called the transition stage. You've been pushing so hard and so long you're exhausted. Spent. And there's nothing to show for all of your effort. During this transition stage it feels like you just can't go on. But it's only because you're very nearly there.

Transition is movement. From one part of life to a whole new one. And it can seem like one long dark scary tunnel. But you have to come out the other side. Because what's been waiting there, might just be glorious."

I'm definitely in a life transition. What's on the other side is unknown, scary as hell. I don't remember childbirth transition as Meredith Grey is talking about it here but I know I experienced it when I gave birth to Twig. Being stuck in fear. Just like now. I made it then. I'll make it now.

Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Das Boot

Plantar Fasciitis...Poop!

I'm wound up oh, so tight that the doc had to work to get my left foot to flex at a 90° angle. It's not surprising. My hamstrings, quads, hip flexors, and low back are chronically tight.

He suggested that it could take 3 months to get back to pain free. Lordy. The body is telling me to love it. Forcing me, actually.

I will commit to 3 months of stretching 4 times a day in addition to my eczema and asthma meds twice a day. Sleeping in the boot that keeps it stretched at night. I will see the naturopath to see about the eczema issues to see about dietary changes I can make. I already started drinking more water, have been applying a homemade oil of vitamin e, jojoba, and coconut and it is helping. Today I also started a turmeric and probiotic supplement for inflammation. It may be harder to forego the dairy. Yesterday I had ice cream and today, fresh mozzarella cheese. Mmmm, cheese. But only.once, not several times. Baby steps.

I have focused my job search to public sector work, preferably part time and have settled on a pay range. The application process is harder than for Craigslist jobs, and perhaps more competitive, but the compensation is worth the effort. I finished an application for a part-time position today and feel hopeful about my chances. And, the last public sector job I applied for I was a serious contender. I will find the right fit with reasonable people, preferably part-time and good pay. That is what I want. I have wanted it for a long time. It is my time.

My time to get what I want so that I can take good care of me, too.

Saturday, March 29, 2014

Flared Up

Yikes, my skin is a hot mess! I've got bumps and scabs everywhere. Fucking eczema.

It's not just that though. I hurt. My joints, my hips, my fingers, feet. Cramps from hell. Achy muscles. I think it's because I've been eating dairy. A lot of dairy - ice cream, cheese, whipped cream. All things that taste good. I've always been allergic and didn't eat it except periodically on pizza. Now I eat it all the time. Ding, ding, ding.

Twig is over tired and asking for my help. He needs food before he takes a shower. He doesn't know what he wants when it comes to food and it is so frustrating. I just want sleep. He's mad at me for my little outburst, having his own. Wood is in charge now. I'm going to bed.

Thursday, March 27, 2014

Letting Off Steam

My husband went out with friends from work tonight - they saw a show. Some old-school rock band.

I heard him come in. I was exhausted tonight because my hormones are a-raging and fell asleep at about 8:30. When I heard him, it felt early. He was obnoxiously and differently loud. It was 10:30.

He's been in the bathroom for nearly 2 hours. Vomiting his guts out. Apologizing (almost as profusely as he's vomiting). He had 4 beers and a shot of something. Plus the contact high of the concert. Nothing for dinner, he said, and spicy food at lunch.

We're going camping tomorrow. My bathroom and bedroom smell. My husband is a lump of a mess on the bathroom floor. I'm not amused. Not angry but not exactly sympathetic either. Now I can't sleep. That's what pisses me off the most. My sleep is fucked up as it is. I was tired, now I'm wired. I'll pay the most for his lack of booze pace. He's going to suffer enough without me rubbing it in. This, I know. But damn it should be an interesting weekend. Good thing I'm a doer.

I saw two doctors today. Eczema of the girl parts and possibly yeast. Chronic, of course. The doctor was so awesome about it that I didn't feel a bunch of shame about it. Maybe mild shame. Shame for sure but I worked through it. Its unnecessary. The nurse said they see 3 people each day with yeast and related infections. That helped a lot.

Apparently, it looked like yeast but wasn't clearly yeast on the slides. So a culture was taken for a more sensitive test. If it is as I suspect, yeast, he will prescribe a 3-6 month course of weekly oral yeast meds.  The eczema gets the strongest cortisone ointment available three times a day for at least two months. Only the top of the line for me. A follow up at the end of the two months of aggressive treatment and the knowledge that this may be a recurring issue that will require periodic aggressive treatment... Okay, I'm here, I'm ready... I don't want to have what feels like a constant episiotimy any more. Fuck that. I deserve to NOT be in constant pain. I owe this to myself.

The dermatologist wasn't concerned about the rest of my skin. She suggested using the steroid cream when I have flare-ups. They're everywhere right now - on my neck, back, arms, chest, legs... They start out like yeast bumps and get itchy and since I come from a long line of pickers, I itch and scratch until they are a scabby mess. I need a better skincare regimen. Starting tomorrow (or is it today, Wood?) daily moisturizing of my entire body. Again, I need to care for myself. I deserve to be healthy and pain free.

The spot on my eyebrow that showed up and grew quickly over the past few weeks is just a little scaly growth. Nothing to worry about but she froze it off anyway. She gets the picking part of me. This is one area I don't feel weird about caring for. I have a bit of vanity tucked way down deep. Plus skin cancer is a real problem for a pasty white girl such as me.

Monday is the podiatrist - for these aching feet that makes it nearly impossible to walk. I don't want it to be plantar fasciitis. Another regimen sounds taxing. Then it's off to the pulmonologist to keep my lungs working. More medication, self-care routines that I hate. But a conversation about medication and it's possible effect/contribution to yeast and eczema will ensue.

Self-care, self-care, self-care. We all need more of it.

The end.

Friday, March 7, 2014

Serious

Whew, what a whirlwind of a week!

Twig is in Guys & Dolls and the show opens tonight! Whew, I'm so glad it's almost over. But even more glad that I've had this time to be with my boy, to do carpool duty, be backstage support, and build costumes for the intermission bit the kids will do. Mostly I've enjoyed being with my boy. Even when he's being a lippy little snit.

Today is Second-Interview-Friday. I'm a top tier candidate invited back for a second look. This will be my second opportunity to assess the supervisor and team culture, and subsequently my fit for the job.

It seems like a good fit. The job isn't difficult - I'm pretty sure it would be easy, almost boring; it's writing and process stuff. My big concerns are about personality and culture related to expectations. The interpersonal stuff. I want to fit well, do good work, and be left alone, unless I don't want to be, you know?

It's a good paying job. Great benefits. Fantastic commute. Nice offices. Supervisor and other people seem like genuine, good, honest people. The interview was good. It felt easy, right. My gut told me it was the job for me when I applied. I have hesitation. Because my last gig was so horrible? It was different, I knew that one (supervisor) was wrong and did it anyway. She tried and failed, too.

This is different. I DO have a choice. If chosen, I'll do it.

And do it well.

Monday, March 3, 2014

In Through The Nose

Out through the mouth.

I have a job interview this morning. For a job I want.

The universe knows if it is the right job for me. I will know soon, too.

My former boss left her Executive Director position. Former colleagues have kept me in the loop. I'm still sure that leaving for the other job, despite the fact that it didn't work out, was the best decision for me. I was so unhappy there.

Now, I am open to what I want: a support role, quality work, supportive colleagues, good working environment, meaningful work. Pay. Retirement benefits.

Okay, off to make this a reality!

Saturday, February 22, 2014

Gone

Wood and I talked briefly about my feelings...no hot sex...in a strange feat of bravery I was honest with myself and him.

Every time he travels for work I feel this way. Afraid, lonely, jealous, and slightly relieved. Although the relief comes once he's gone and I settle into it for a minute.

This trip and the 24 year old Female Colleage feelings resurfacing highlighted something that I haven't given much air-time before now, and that is: I'm afraid that when he leaves he's going to realize, because he's someplace else, enjoying the company of new people, new places, new things, that he's unhappy with the boring life he has with me. That I'm NOT good enough or the person he really wanted.

After however many years it's been that we've known each other - almost 15 - I've become used to our life together. I've settled in and that's usually when it gets taken away - when I really care. When I really care, I'm helpless, I'll be really seen for the fraud I am, I'll screw it up because I'm so damaged and nobody wants me for the True Me.

My Facebook-Friend list is significantly large but it's deceptively so. Most of the people there are, at best, acquaintances. Don't take this wrong, I feel something for each one of them but it's more of a psychic, spiritual connectedness-to-the-universe feeling. Not, 'I'm there for you every day and understand you' kind of connectedness - my circle is Wood and Twig. I want more than just them but the idea of just them or them plus others is constrictive and frightening. It's being in relationship with others that's difficult for me.

People have become tiring. Actually, when I think about it, I've always needed a lot of down time, being left alone to my thoughts, to recharge through absence of input. I never fully learned how to maintain my Self in the midst of other people. I get pulled in too close and then tear myself away because it's all I can think to do to not become completely engulfed.

I know that I can take care of myself. Even when Wood's gone. More importantly, when he's here. He will come back to me. I will let him - I will greet him with an open heart. Someday, when he doesn't, I'll long for the love he has shown me through the years.

Que sera sera.

Thursday, February 20, 2014

One Year Later

One year ago I went to Las Vegas with Wood - he was attending a work conference and I tagged along. We went a few days early for a mini-vacation.

On the first night of the conference, a female colleague of Wood's rolled up on him like they were more than colleagues. When we were introduced, she was uncomfortable and said so. I went for her jugular. But every time I turned around, the bitch was there.

As we left the conference, the rage built up. By the time we got on to the plane, I'd accused Wood of having an affair, and made quite a stink. He wasn't angry at my accusation. He was hurt, sad even. We talked through it - I asked pointed questions and felt reasonably assured that I was being insecure.

Wood leaves tomorrow for another conference. Skanky Bitch, we, I mean colleague, is going to be there. She was too familiar with him. I'm fuming again.

Part of me doesn't believe that they are/were just friends. I don't recognize myself here. So what, I tell myself, there's nothing I can do. What happened happened, whatever will be will be. And I will be fine.

Right?

Do I talk to him about my feelings before he leaves? When he gets home? Ask for details when he gets home? Require a daily phone call to Twig? Meditate on my insecurity? Have super hot sex with him tomorrow before he boards the plane? All of the above?

I'm not 44 years old. I'm 13.

Thursday, January 30, 2014

Zen Tough Love

During our appointment with the child Psychologist, I cried. And cried, and cried. Overwhelmed with emotion. During the trip to the office Wood and Twig had both been so demonstrative. Wood because I had changed my mind over the course of several days whether Twig should attend the appointment and Twig because, once he knew he was going to the appointment, he was infuriated. He wailed "No, I don't want to go!" in a really, super pathetic groaning voice I've not really heard from him before. It was interspersed with angry tones and kicking the armrests and seats that Wood and I sat in. It was very, very difficult to keep it together while driving 55mph along Highway 5 in morning rush hour traffic.


When we arrived, the Nice Man chatted with Twig alone in another room for a few minutes before meeting with Wood and I. He quickly asked Twig to go to the lobby. He complied, happily, cheerfully. Our conversation started with small talk. An update about what's been happening in our lives and moved on to what's happening with Twig. How things have started to slowly increase in intensity and that the boy has begun to get somewhat physical with me again. It's not to the extent it was last year when Grandma had moved in with us (and everyone was angry) and I literally feared for my life at times. But it did require me to lock myself in my room for fear that either he'd hurt me or I'd lose my cool and really hurt him. The thought "I really want to beat the living crap out of him - if I did that he'd really get the picture" scared me so I took my computer and some yarn into my room, texted Wood to get his ass home, and stayed there until he did. 

The conversation between the Nice Man, Wood and I centered on our responses to Twig's behaviors. How these responses play into the downward spiral is not new information. We must not give any emotion. We must say things once and provide natural consequences. Duh, duh, and duh. We also implemented all of the techniques that we learned in a class we took last year - to no avail. So, he's upped the ante. 

The plan at this point is that Twig will choose to be cooperative, helpful and respectful. If he does not, he will get nothing from us. Here are a few examples: Yell at me because you're not pleased with the food I made, refuse to help set the table, empty the dishwasher, etc? Figure out your meals yourself. Toss a fit because you don't want to put your dirty clothes in the hamper, not willing to put your clean clothes away? Good luck with that, you're on your own. Push something to the extent that you get sassy and/or physical? Mom gets to leave the house and go do something fun - without you. So what if you're not supposed to leave a kid under 12 home alone. We're not talking about the usual kid upset from frustration, sadness, confusion, etc. We're talking about his demonstrative behavior for which I feel like I'm constantly at war, on the defensive, angry. The Nice Man handed down his verdict and explained that if this didn't go in Twig's favor - meaning if he can't get it together (because he knows what he's doing) - Military School, haircut the way Mom & Dad wan't it (his hair is long), clothes we choose, removal from the school he currently attends, and stopping all extra curricular activities, may be the only logical next option. He may have been scared straight.

Day 1 (even though it was the same day as the appointment, I think it counts) I dropped him off at school with zero fanfare. Except the required hug and kiss upon departure. The usual stuff here. It was after school, when I picked him up from martial arts, and thereafter, that was different. He greeted me with an actual smile (it's usually a detestable roar of "why are you here to get me?"). He put his things away where they're supposed to go with no reminders - shoes, backpack, coat, lunchbox and all of it's contents! I didn't get into anything with him. Let him stay up as long as he wanted. 

Day 2 
The morning routine was mine because Wood had an early meeting. Twig woke up and came into my room for a bit of a cuddle. Nice. A few minutes later I stated "I need to get up and get my day started. If you want a ride, you need to get ready within 20 minutes." My bad, I shouldn't have stated a timeframe because I know the timeframe isn't really reasonable - for him. And we don't have a clock in the house. I'll be getting one today. He got himself breakfast, dressed. I made his lunch. Offered a couple of reminders in the form of a question - are you going to brush your teeth today? And, only because I don't have anywhere to be, told him to let me know when he was ready to leave. I stood there fully dressed, keys in hand, waiting for him. 

The evening was the same. At pick up, I talked to his Martial Arts teacher. He let me have the time without any questions and no interruptions. He had a great attitude. Helped when asked. OFFERED TO HELP MAKE DINNER. Washed his hands without a fuss. Participated. Talked about his friends, his school day. A 180 degree departure from usual.

Day 3 - This morning was about the same. He generally participated, did what he needed to do, had a good attitude and even told us what was left on his getting ready list of things to do. Without prompting. 

Well, this has been an absolute dream couple of days. This, this is the family I've always wanted. I'll keep you posted because I'm sure, no positive, that it's not going to be this easy for ever. 


Wednesday, January 29, 2014

An Order and Permission

It's been more than a month since I've thought to post. Well, I've thought about it. But clearly, this is the first I've stopped and used my thumbs to write words and string together sentences (that aren't cover letter and resume related).

Off in a cloud, my world had been both upside down and dream-like. Clothes sit in a poorly organized and hardly folded pile atop my dresser. Too small to wear, ignoring their existence seems all the energy that can be mustered for them. My days are mostly my own. Wood has taken on the morning routine, getting Twig off to school. Baseline is possible most days but I've also been very, very tired. I give in to my body and mind. Napping is glorious!

Grappling with what I was as opposed to what I am or what I want to be is the order of the day and it's painful, heart wrenching stuff. I am not the person I wanted to be. Not the person I thought I'd be.

My Nice Lady (and a child psychologist that I'll call 'Nice Man'), upon hearing the struggles to get my child to be a civil, participating member of the household have suggested, quite directly, that I need to let go. Of caring, expectation, demonstrating displeasure for failed responses, of getting stuff done, of offering or being of service. And when things get out of hand, I have been given permission to leave. To Go Have Fun. With my husband if the circumstances warrant.

"Only to the extent that we expose ourselves over and over to annihilation can that which is indestructible be found in us."

That is my mantra. I'm scared but in the throes of it. It's time to learn the lesson, not just master the assignment.

Finally, after a lifetime of distancing myself I no longer want to be distanced. Especially from the people I care about most. And yet, here I am. Forced into learning self-preservation, yet again.

Thursday, December 12, 2013

Fuck It

The goal: Self Care

Basic stuff really. But whatever. Here it is.

-Take breathing meds twice daily, consistently
-Take vitamins daily, consistently
-Shower daily
-Exercise three times a week (or more, if possible)
-Eat nutritious food at regular intervals throughout the day
-Keep alcohol consumption to a minimum

I made it to the gym and took my morning meds. I ate crap. Ordered delivery for dinner. Layed on the couch most of the day.

But I rocked these socks at the gym.

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Escape

The public library. I found my way there yesterday with the intention of getting "When Things Fall Apart" and a couple of books on tape for grandma.

I walked out without the book I wanted but with two novels for myself and two books on tape for grandma. The book I was looking for isn't available at the branch I went to (better parking) and the downloadable kindle version is out on loan. I put a hold on it and don't mind. Fiction is what I crave right now - someone else's story to get lost in.

Twig was off of school today because of weather. The "weather" here is hilariously tame so funny that kids are out for no real good reason. I tried to make it a good day, really, I DID. But this boy is so busy and I'm so tired. Depressed. Unfocused. Short tempered.

We played Connect Four, I submitted a job application, had a pulmonary appointment, let him decide what to make for dinner (such a relief to not have to choose, plan AND prepare), shopped together and made it together, too. Enchilada Casserole, rice, salad, and a key lime pie.

I forgot about the appointment and showed up late. And cried like a real depressed person in the office. In part because being on all day with Twig was hard and we had a bunch of tussles (he's so oppositional and that doesn't mix well with down-on-yourself), and in part because I'm, well, depressed.

I didn't quit the Nice Lady after all, either. Which is such a good thing. She's awesome. Although Alanon came up. Again. I just laughed when she brought it up. When anti-depressants were discussed, I told her how I feel like I need them, but feel more averse to them, and probably won't go that route because I'll get through this, too. Perhaps I need a litmus test to help me decide that enough is enough and the amount of time will be too great - that I should wait no longer.

Center is what I'm trying to find. My own internal compass that guides me through the good and bad. I had it once and miss it.

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

On Productivity

No television! Make a list for the week. Focus!

No television yesterday was a real productivity booster! I did several loads of laundry, volunteered at Wood's work for a fundraiser they're doing, and worked on a job application.

I feel better for doing so, too. So, for now, I'm trying to create a daily/weekly list and focus on getting through the tasks on said list. Nothing will happen if there's no plan.

Monday, December 9, 2013

Saturday, December 7, 2013

All In Good Time

Grey's Anatomy has become my drug of choice. Mind numbingly easy to watch because of all of the soap-opera sex and relationship stuff mixed with enough emotionally charged topics to make me feel connected to the characters and able to cry for absolutely any reason.

In this process of review and reflect there have been a lot of feelings - feeling sorry for myself then unworthy. Early in the week I felt suddenly brave (enough) to submit an unemployment claim and tell a friend that I'd been canned. I didn't sleep at all that night.

The anger piece hit pretty hard yesterday. Which is better than the crippling depression and isolation brought on by fear and self loathing. It's energetic - doing something is fueled by this anger. Make no mistake, I'm wildly depressed and cry in between the bouts of cooking or cleaning. But at least I'm cooking or cleaning or sitting with grandma and those things DO count for something.

Some day I may recognize myself the way I did before I delved into this marriage, cohabitation and parenting thing. Mostly the parenting thing. That's the time it, I, really became differently-capable, able to keep my high standards in only one arena of my life. Or perhaps when I didn't recognize and accept that a serious shift would be needed. Now I'm being forced.

I keep telling myself that I WILL bounce back from this better than before. I'll find my place. I will be brave and find my place again.

Monday, November 25, 2013

Perfect Timing

There's nothing worth regret, Wonelle.

Absolutely nothing, ever.

Same for fear, worry, and anger.

Let 'em go, rise above, get down, move on -
    The Universe

-------------------------------------------

Friday found me on the couch watching Gray's Anatomy, lying in a great big puddle of tears. The show was perfect subject matter (moving, new job, friendships, relationships, and Alzheimer's disease among other heartfelt topics) for a self-pity-ing-over-feel-er such as myself.

By the time Wood got home, I was incapacitated. He knew I had spent the day crying. He probably doesn't realize I spent it crying about more than a bad "fit".

Choices.

I was lamenting the poor choices I have made because of someone else's input and despite my inner knowing. For wanting something different than what I had. For being practical and doing things I felt I should do instead of what would meet my emotional needs (can you say living with my mother-in-law for almost 2 years?). For not having what I want because I asked for permission instead of taking what I deserve.

Sleep.

I'm exhausted from taking care of everyone else's needs. Insomnia hit hard Friday night so I napped on Saturday. Wood doesn't care for it. Maybe he's worried that I'll fall into a deep depression, a valid concern - but this is a brand new flesh wound in an area that has been hurt before. There's significance here. Monday I woke feeling refreshed - because I don't have to go back; I slept through the night.

Art.

I started the Day of the Dead figurines. It didn't take long to feel like it was right.

More later.

Be Well,

Wonelle

XO

Saturday, November 23, 2013

Something Up My Sleeve

1. Volunteer in Twig's classroom
2. Make Day of the Dead figurines
3. Develop an online database idea that's been brewing in my noggin for a long time
4. Apply for unemployment benefits
5. Reconnect with myself
6. Listen to my inner voice
7. Read Radical Acceptance
8. Exercise, clean the house, cook and care for my family - visit grandma and get her out if the house a couple of times a week
9. Apply for jobs
10. Forgive myself for not consistently doing 1-9 before now.

Friday, November 15, 2013

Sacrifice

A friend invited me to a special holiday sale event last night. I almost cancelled because I am so tired from work and I had already been out several nights this week. Instead, I checked in with Wood and with his positive reinforcement, decided to go anyway.

I must tell you, I had an AMAZING time. And only after a couple of hours settling into the scene (which wasn't entirely my speed) and looking at the treasure that was for the taking (and drinking a glass or three of champagne), I relaxed enough to buy myself something that I wouldn't normally buy for myself and remembered that I have interests and proclivities toward collecting things.

I have a fetish for paper and fabric and costume jewelry. I love the idea of continuing my grandfather's saucer and teacup collection. Some art excites me. I'm intrigued by what people create and strangers are so very interesting to talk to.

We talked and then had dinner out. This woman is one of my 60 something year old friends. I love that I am connected to women who are wiser than I am.

I enjoyed the evening so very, very much and as I had hoped, it filled me up a little bit. It also helped me realize how very, very much of myself I've given away. The first step toward healing is knowing. Right?

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Wanna take a stab at this spread?

It's all so positive and things (at work) feel less than positive. Crushing the job means I plan on doing great at it! I'm not doing badly when I look at the numbers. But interactions with my boss makes feel like a 9 year old. I'm all over the freaking map. One minute okay, the next a puddle. My stuff is boiling over - confidence tanked at the slightest sideways glance. I worked hard to not be that gal and yet here I am. Made a bad choice even though I knew better. Now I suffer. Have I said all of this before?

Monday, November 4, 2013

Daylight Savings

The good thing about it is that I got some extra sleep. Still woke up exhausted as when I went to bed. My lower back hurts today (exercise related), I have an appointment with a new doctor to talk exhaustion and other symptoms that have been present for a while. Probably exacerbated by the stress and strain of a new job but a check up can't hurt.

I made a decision about work - I'm going to crush it. I wanted this. That's my choice. However, I also reserve the right to change my mind. Wood says in 6 months finances will be easier to make a switch. So there's that.

Happy Monday.

Friday, November 1, 2013

Impostor Syndrome

Yup, I feel like a fake.

I wonder if it's because I'm not being true to myself or just because I'm learning so much on the fly.

Rage is the other feeling. Me and my inner child are chummy these days. She's got some stuff to get through.

Thursday, October 31, 2013

Fleeting Feelings

They come and go but whenever they do, they're fierce feelings.

I texted Wood today and told him I'm planning my departure from this place. I'm not interested in this. He didn't respond.

Later, when I was in the bathroom, it occurred to me that I can choose to make this anything I want it to be. Like I've said of my marriage. But I have to choose.

I don't want to be a quitter. I also don't want to be in defensive mode all the time. I want something a bit more warm and fuzzy.

The jury has not yet made it's final decision. But it's close. It will.

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Positive Momentum

The job isn't tough. The boss really isn't either. My history and internal dialogue is. She's a mirror for my stuff.

I have developed and hold the tools necessary to manage myself. The crux of the issue is knowing and encompassing them:

Being in charge of me, my thoughts and actions.

Managing my inner voice and quieting or silencing negative talk, especially where the thoughts or opinions of others (who haven't said anything) are concerned, and which isn't true or helpful.

Setting clear and firm boundaries for myself and others. Communicating them with clear and consistent compassion.

Knowing that I am not bound to any choice forever.

Speaking the truth - having an open, honest dialogue instead of dropping a conversation because it's tough.

Caring for myself deeply - in thought and action - regular food, sleep, medical care, sex, exercise, joy.

Giving myself permission to be me. Because I'm pretty fanned awesome.

The Nice Lady and I will be ending our relationship. I'm ready. Part of this is practicing the process of endings. So much of my challenges lie in being with my feelings (whatever they may be). I know how to burn bridges, walk away and never look back. I haven't had nearly enough endings that finish on a good note. So, here we go. Over the next 6 weeks, we have 3 appointments and will process ending. All the while knowing that if I want counseling at some point in the future, she's available. I've come a long way, too. That's comforting.

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Struggling

Insomnia looms large.

The new job is a lot, as I've already said. My boss is difficult and she brings up my stuff in a big mutherfucking way.

I am afraid. On edge. Paralyzed by anxiety. In protective mode.

Unable to perform. Unable to care for myself in a reasonable way. Overwhelmed and fairly sure that this was not a good move, that it's just a matter of time before I'm let go. I had wrong hopes for this gig, this woman at the helm.

I want less intensity with superiors. It will come.

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Rough & Tumble

The new job has been a tough transition. Much harder than I expected. Sort of.

It's pushing me to set and maintain boundaries, stick up for myself, be okay with a lot of chaos, take care of myself, and produce a lot. All skills I posess. Just skills I don't practice consistently.

The Universe is aligned for me. I can and will do this.

Sunday, September 29, 2013

Sunday Visit

Like every weekend, we visited grandma today. Earlier in the morning than usual because we had plans to take Twig to Seattle to see a baseball game. Tomorrow's his birthday and the A's are on their way to the World Series, so, here we are, visiting grandma earlier in the day than usual.

She seemed like her normal self at first. But after breakfast, she called us into her room and proceeded to tell us that the people there are trying to poison her, that she's scared because she's being left alone, and wants to come live with us. It was quite the scene. She's agitated and tells us she's sure we think she's crazy. She talks for a minute while fidgeting. Cross her leg, uncross her leg. Reposition herself in the chair, then get up and walk to the kitchen to be sure the caretaker is still there. Return to tell us that she's been left alone again. To which we reassure her she is okay, and that the woman with the baby is still there and will not leave. It's all happening in her head and she's the only one living in that head.

This causes Wood much stress and anxiety. He gets angry at her behavior and irrational line of thinking. She picks up on his anger and continues anyway. She can't help it. She's confused and she doesn't remember what she's saying it doing.

I asked the caretaker to give her a Trazadone in the hopes that she would calm down a bit. Especially given the fact that the regular caregiver wasn't home and we were leaving for the day.

Grandma called just as we were entering Seattle. Three hours later and the agitation and line of thought was the same. Perhaps the Trazadone wasn't the right thing to do to help. Perhaps there is nothing that we can do to help.

Thursday, September 26, 2013

Change

Our building just sold. We've known for the past few months that this would happen. It's been really hard for me. I've got a lot if feelings about it. Unresolved loss, lack of transition closure and too much unplanned change in our lives I suppose.

If I list it, it's impressive. In about 3 years time this has happened:

-husband moves to Portland
-child goes to kindergarten
-house gets burgalarized
-nephew gets cancer
-niece gets born
-me & twig move to Portland
-grandma gets surgery
-grandma gets Alzheimer's diagnosis
-grandma plans to move into independent living place in Portland
-grandma moves in with us
-we move to accommodate grandma living with us
-twig acts out, violently at times
-grandma breaks her spine in a freak bus accident
-I have unexpected appendix surgery and the same week, a weird mammogram result and torn cartilage in my knee
-I have an almost hospital worthy asthma episode
-grandma moves to a group home
-we move to a new place
-twig hates second grade
-I get a new job

I'm over going with the flow. I'm tired and I want it to be simple and quiet.

Time to sleep.

Friday, September 6, 2013

Healing

Mind, body and soul are all on the mend.

I have some brain power to think about what I want for myself, my family, our lives - long and short term.

My body is doing well. I'm sleeping through the night. Despite waking with headaches in the mornings (allergies, me thinks), I'm hungry for food. The small biopsy wound on my arm is healing (no call from the dermatology office this week as promised, I'll check in again next week) and my hair is growing in. I've got "whispies" where there have been none for a long time. My nails are growing quickly, they are peeling, too (there really is no reason to do dishes and clean!). I care not.

Libido and an ability to laugh is present where it had gone missing. I have hopes and dreams where I once felt suffocated. I'm feeling capable of starting exercise again.

Life is good. 

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

The Season of Me

No more job I was unhappy at. A week off before I start my new one (although there is some work I have to do to prepare).

Dentist - check
Blood Pressure - 129/66 - check
Dermatology appt. - freeze off the spot on my forehead - check
        - scalp scabs that won't heal - acne - check
         - scaly stuff on my hand - excema - check
         - Brown spot on my forearm - biopsy - wait a week for the results

Later I lunch with a friend. Arrange appointments, run errands, get stuff done. Watch more tv.

Yep, it's like that.

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Bit By Bit

I'm stepping out of my current role.

Last week I announced my departure to everyone. Today I removed my work email from my cell phone.

What will it be tomorrow, besides counting the days until I'm out?

Friday, August 9, 2013

Hurry!

It's perfectly normal, Wonelle, that when waiting for a really big dream to come true it seems like it's taking forever, you wonder if you're doing something wrong, and you feel like you should just be happy with less.

But I promise you, no matter how long it takes, once it happens it'll seem as if time flew, you'll wonder how you ever doubted yourself, and you'll feel like you should have aimed a little higher.

Aim a little higher, Wonelle -The Universe

********
These notes from the Universe always are spot-on and show up in my in-box just in the nick-of-time.

Wednesday, August 7, 2013

Fortitude

Since I resigned on Monday, I've felt a surge of calm and simultaneous energy wash over me. It's feeling stronger every day, too. Like I can take on the life I'm living rather than being a slave to it.

I'm announcing to the management team and my staff today. Although, I'd be only mildly surprised if people already know. The grapevine there is supercalifragilisticexpialedocious. Things people didn't know they knew other people already know, you know?

I'm working on setting myself up for success in the new gig, too. And need to write some thank you notes pronto.

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Self Care Reminder in my In-Box (!)

No more "supposed tos," OK, Wonelle?

You're not supposed to work harder, look better, sleep less, sell more, run faster, talk slower, be happier, stay longer, leave earlier, cook, clean, negotiate, settle, start, stop, move, try, win, shake, rattle or roll.

Other people made all that up.

I love you the way you are,

The Universe

*****************
Oh, you can do any or all of the above, Wonelle, you so can, but you're not "supposed to."

Monday, August 5, 2013

Self Care

It's beginning to be the season of me. Quitting my job! NOT taking a walk when I wanted to stay home. Going to sleep very soon because I'm exhausted. It's all about taking care of Wonelle's true needs. First.

You Must Finish What You Start

To Hell with that!

I'm a quitter and it feels SO (expletive) good!

Hopefully I'll manage to be out if here in three weeks. It's going to be a long three weeks!

Sunday, August 4, 2013

Tarot

I have a nifty tarot app on my phone and this is what popped out today. Next to that is my new office (from the door so I'll be moving the desk first thing).

It seems a bit scary - especially with all the change I'm about to encounter. My fears about the change are frequent and range from daily considerations like telling my current boss and colleagues, drop off and pick up changes for Twig, worries that I'll be learning a lot (is it too much?) or expected to do too much too fast, to being unhappy, and wondering what the future holds.

I need to have faith that it will work out just fine. It's going to be just fine.

Right?

Thursday, August 1, 2013

We're About Half Way There

Sunday July 28, 2013 7:42am

Wood,

I took the biggest risk of my entire life just to meet you. I may have to choose every day, but I've never once regretted it -you're the best person to ever come into my life. I love you a million times over, especially because you love every part of ME.

Watch this Story Corps video

Love, Wonelle

*****************
Tues July 30, 2013 7:43am

My first my last my everything. You have given me so much in our time together. A beautiful and talented son. A relationship based on truth even when it hurts. An honest and unflinching support of me even in the face of my own ineptitude and sometimes lack of focus.

We both stepped outside the relative comfort of our lives just for a chance to be together. What an amazing gift when you are willing to risk yourself for a chance at love. Thank you for being my partner every step of our journey together. You are such a beautiful person. Please keep loving yourself as much I love YOU! Thank you for being all mine...

Wood

Home Sweet Home

It took nearly the entire vacation before home was anywhere on my radar screen. Granted, I missed Twig, as much as any mom can when she's only one small step from completely losing it; that 12 hour drive through Grants Pass and horrible wildfires smoke was really tough because I was excruciatingly exhausted for most of it and we haven't had a real family vacation in a couple of YEARS. It was long overdue. I didn't realize how much I needed it until it began. But I'm glad to be home.

I extended my time away from work through today. There's stuff that needs to be done on the home front. And I've kind of already checked out of that place. I've checked email a couple of times and it's just annoying. I knew that place was trouble from day one. I should have walked away then. I should have run! But grown ups have obligations. I felt like I had to keep the job. So I did.

It hasn't been all bad. I've been given some serious opportunities there. I've made some positive improvements. I've grown and developed programs, people, and myself. But, still, I should have RUN away after the first day!

At least one staff person will be glad to see me go - and she'll think she's won. To that I say "we both win!" Others will be disappointed but not because of any relationship we've built. My boss will be disappointed because my departure will make her ability to look good harder than it is. My staff will be disappointed because of the unknowns my leaving will bring. It's been very, very rocky with them for about 8 months. I don't think clients will care much, or notice, really. My job impacts them but not too directly. I will be sad to leave a couple of people - one really - but we will be able to have a friendship outside the office. I am sad to leave, like when you leave a boyfriend that isn't good for you but you just know he has has the potential to be a great husband and father. To someone else.

Yeah, it's like that!

I think my new boyfriend will like my sassy attitude and big fat ass - I could be selling myself a bill of goods but I'm not just jumping into this relationship like I did that last guy. I took some time to think this one through and feel like we fit better. It feels like going home.

Monday, July 29, 2013

Choices

I'm going to go for it. Scared to death but I'm going to take the plunge and accept the job.

Saturday, July 27, 2013

Decisions, Decisions

I was offered the job!

As I spouted off all of the pros and cons to Wood, the CEO called and offered me the job. She said she never wavered from me as the top candidate from a pool of 8 (or 9) very qualified people. I expressed my thanks and expressed that I was flattered to be her choice, and proceeded to tell her that I needed to discuss the offer with my husband and call her back next week.

I'm torn. Scared of staying where I am, of leaving, of doing something new, with new people, new places - of doing new things. Boy, Wood's friend sure did hit the nail on the head.

Ultimately, my issue is about taking a leap of faith.

I can barely recognize myself here - wanting to make the right choice so badly and not confident in my choice. There are reasons to stay and reasons to go.

Reasons to stay include a fair amount of autonomy and flexibility. Reasons to leave include too much responsibility, too many (difficult) staff, etc.

Reasons to go include an environment that is crazy-making (not that the new place isn't also crazy-making - it's a serious unknown).  More money, less responsibility, opportunity to do new things and a slightly different arena of work.

I'm leaning toward taking it. Really, I am. But I need to talk to the CEO and get some more information about her, style, and issues that are important to me - autonomy, etc.

Monday, July 22, 2013

Vacation

Sad, homesick, weepy, familiar, and distant. All words that could be used to describe the feeling of being home on vacation. None correct.

The feeling I couldn't conjure a word for is Melancholy.

It's familiar but not familiar here. People, places, streets, feelings. Not quite the same as they once were. They can never be, really. And yet I long for them. Simultaneously knowing that it's futile to do so.

I am working on being present in this moment. It's all I've got. I can't wax poetic about what was and live now at the same time. That's taking now for granted. Not intentionally, but really the case.

Always ready to move on, and yet I'm stuck in the past. I never fully lived it. Re-living isn't possible. I mourn what was, what could have been. What I wish I was. What I wish I were. Then and now.

Wood and Radical Acceptance are correct, it's time to love all of me. Now is the time to try.

Friday, July 19, 2013

Friday Topics

Friday is Nice Lady day. First thing in the morning I head out to chat.

Last week was tough.

This week wasn't much easier. I can't form sentences all too well - when it comes to this shizzle, yo, so I'm gonna write a list-y kind of thing...

Trust - in the goodness of others or likelihood that someone will do me wrong
Faith - in something like God or a higher power and the fact that I can't will things to be
Kindness - with self first
Open heart - what is so scary about all of the above?
Alanon - ugh, I'm so disinterested and she won't drop it
Me - be nice and first take care of self. This includes eating, sleeping, reading, etc.
Vacation - starts now

That's all I've got now. Thanks for reading, Paula. And anyone else that comes here.


Tuesday, July 16, 2013

The Universe

The greater the emotional pain, Wonelle, the greater the desire had been to learn the most, fast.

Impressive,
     The Universe

*******************
And the greater the desire, Wonelle, to get on with happily ever after... which begins right about now.

www.tut.com

HUNGRY

I woke up at 3am, my head full of shit from the day and anxiety about a job interview I've got today. And then my belly got all belchy and started saying "feed me, Seymour"  so, instead of ignoring it and staying awake for the rest of the night, tossing and turning, stressing about shit I can't fix anyway, and being pissed off that I was awake, I headed to the kitchen for some Pastrami (salt), milk/honey cookie (starch and I'm just guessing here, but some saturated fat), and strawberry lemonade (sweet). Then I FELL BACK TO SLEEP. And woke up this morning ravenous.

I can do this. I can do it well. With some food in my belly!

Monday, July 15, 2013

Dreaming

Walking around, I threw my shoes - into a room I wanted to go into, to see what was going on, but the doors closed.

Before the shoe throwing there were gobs of people around - it was about the holidays.

We left and got a fair distance away, swimming, and I remembered my shoes. I climbed back up and into the hotel to retrieve them.

A man was cleaning shoes in a closet. There were several pair there and one looked kind of like mine, but they weren't. He led me to anothe spot where they could be. And then told me I'd have to wait.

His boss called me into a room. He was weird. The boss. Socially weird. But he looked familiar. I asked if he was the brother of a friend. From the running group. Explained I knew him, his daughter. Asked him his name. When he was under-responsive, I asked more questions. He played music - blasted it. I complimented his eclectic choices. I was not afraid.

He threatened me strangely, for tossing my shoes into the place that wasn't to be seen with plastic surgery. Held my head and face, traced all of the lines he'd cut, where he'd tuck and made a plan for the surgery. The shoe cleaner watched. It wasn't planned for today, it was for the time I came back. If I chose to come back again. That would be the punishment, I suppose.

I walk along a group of very young people. Mostly women w/their mom's. They're checking in to college. We weave along the windy path. I know my way, but not at the same time. I make a few friends and they tell the mothers about me. I will keep an eye on them. I'm a junior.

Saturday, July 13, 2013

Intense Pain

I can't quite remember the last time I felt such an intense pain. Emotional, gut wrenching, pain.

It's real.

I'm working on it.

It will be better in the end.

Whenever that is.

For now, I read Radical Acceptance. And cry. A lot.

Friday, July 12, 2013

On Being Me

Nice Lady appointment today was rough. Real shit coming down the pike, yo.

Drill it down and the issue is abuse. That's harsh, for Fucking sure. But it's most likely the goddamned Truth.

I have a chip on my shoulder. I'm angry. I'm mean. Not always. But when I am, people react.

I'm mean.

To give or receive mean hurts like a motherfucking motherfucker.

So there it is.

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Complaining

I'm in a "Fuck everybody, I hate people" mood. Mostly in my body and mind this week.

People, particularly at work, are annoying me to no end. I've let my inner bitch run wild a minute or two here and there.

Poor thing, she's been cooped up for such a long time... And I'm so darned rough on her for coming out every now and again. As if she should not exist.

She does. I DO. I EXIST.

So, here's the truth: I'm not interested in everybody and their goddamned feelings. Grow up. Get a pair.

If you don't want to do that, move on motherfucker. I'm over the bullshit.

Done.

My knee hurts like hell and isn't getting better. I let work drama keep me up last night. I'm in a place where I'm too exhausted at the end of the day to give my family what they need. Done, I tell you. Done.

Being In Charge

It is tough to constantly be in charge. I am - at home and at work - always the responsible one. Always in charge of everyone and everything.

Usually it's okay. But I'm beat down these days. Supervisor to people I'd have never in a million years hired is absolutely draining. Only because I work in a place that has no boundaries so bad behavior seems to be acceptable - even expected - and there aren't often repercussions for it.

In her written performance evaluation, a staff person stated that I'm disrespectful and not supportive. That concerns are minimized or ignored and some other, in the same vein, harsh stuff that was really hard to hear.

While I contend that this person is, again, someone I'd never hire, a pain in the ass, and adept at bitching instead of working, there is a bit of truth to her complaints. In my attempt to create clarity and boundaries, my supervisory authority does mean that I am clear about things being "my decision" and when it is appropriate (or not) to gossip about decisions that haven't been made. I know I sometimes seem like I don't give a shit. And honestly, sometimes, I don't.

So, there's the rub. I want to be in charge. But not of lazy babies whose mommies are going to give them a lolly just to prevent a crying tantrum in the middle of the grocery store because that's easier than dealing with the reality of teaching said baby that No means No and you have to deal with that.

So, I've been doing my best to refrain from defending, explaining and justifying my decisions and actions. But I've got a lot of babies in my midst. Babies that are used to mommy talking too much and making sure they "feel heard".

I listen. I don't always agree and I certainly don't give in to everything that everyone wants all the time. I can't. And that's different than not supporting. But, it's important that I at least consider what's being said about how I'm in charge. It doesn't mean that I necessarily need to change. Just consider how to seem more supportive to certain people.

I'll also consider that I've got a freaking job interview on Tuesday! It's probably a long shot. And the babies might be crazy there, too. Who knows? And vacation! Vacation is happening very soon!

Thanks, Universe, for giving me the right thing at the right time.

Sunday, July 7, 2013

Zzzzzzzzzzz

Once my sister and the kids left, it was easy to settle into having our house and compact family all to ourselves again. My sister, bless her heart, just wanted to be home, I guess.

I've slept through the night for the past 4 nights in a row! Yea, it's true! And very, very exciting! Eat for Heat by Matt Stone has changed my life (for the last 4 nights anyway). Who knew that drinking less water throughout the day and eating some starch, sugar and salt instead, and particularly before bed could help?

I've been tracking my waking temperature daily and notice that I run much lower than normal. Sometimes as low as 96 degrees. Eat for Heat suggests that this is a sign of a poorly operating metabolism. The low temperatures and lack of sleep combined with eating too few calories, leave me cranky and lethargic. So, I'm trying to eat at my total daily energy expenditure as calculated from this calculator. The theory goes that most people gain weight from eating too little, not too much, and our bodies go into starvation mode, holding on to every calorie consumed to be prepared for the famine. Again, add poor sleep, and the low temperatures and do this enough and ones metabolism gets shot.

I'm working on getting enough sleep. If food helps, right on, I'm eating! Besides, I feel better when I'm well rested. And fed.

Wednesday, July 3, 2013

Like Mother Like Daughter

My sister decided not only to go home several days early but to leave at 9:30 at night without saying goodbye. I was exhausted and sleeping, Wood watching TV, Twig hanging out with them. She just packed everyone up and drove away. I'm so disappointed. It's so rude! And I told her that it sucked that she left without saying goodbye or letting us say goodbye. Because we were really looking forward to spending time together tomorrow. Maybe we offended them? Hey, my mom did it, too - walked out, no words, just left. I guess I shouldn't be too surprised. Now I'm just mad.

Thursday, June 20, 2013

Today SUCKED

Most of it, anyway.

Started the day feeling weepy so I cried before even getting out of bed.

Wood yelled at me for *get this* dropping him off a block away from his office. He had the nerve to tell me it was unreasonable to do so.

My vacation was *nearly* thwarted and it put my blood pressure dangerously high for the entire day. On edge I guess.

One staff on vacation. One sick for the past two days. The third, of four, overly emotional for no reason. Lifted something too heavy EVEN THOUGH I SAID NOT TO, and landed herself at the doctor. An event unstaffed. A direct service person no showed a shift, the client yelled at me, another quit via TEXT message. And my mom called all stressed out. Which stressed me out.

It was a really rough day. Tomorrow is a fresh start. Crossfit in the morning - I joined the crossfit gym and committed for a year. And I spoke with my sweet Twig who sounds like he's having such a good time. And Wood apologized when I explained how hurt I was and that it makes me feel sad to think he regards me in a way that he can treat me so poorly.

Never ALL bad. But VERY tiring. Exhausting.

You Can't Make Me

I wish it were as simple as that.

I don't want to go to work. To argue, write, research, think and do stuff that I'm not really interested or invested in. Besides, it feels like nobody likes me or cares for the work I do and I'm exhausted by it. All of it.

I wanna run away from it. But there aren't enough sick days in the bank. And my resume isn't getting any love.

Sigh.

Friday, June 7, 2013

Overtired Asthmatic

It's been a while since I've posted. No real reason for not doing so. I check the posts of my favorite writers almost daily but I haven't had much time to write myself. Well then, there is a real reason.

This week has been tough. My lungs are upset and acting out. I exercised at home the other day, and although it was an exercise routine of 7 minutes, I started wheezing and was absolutely exhausted afterward. As in, I just want to go to sleep, it's 9am and I've been awake for only 3 hours but I have to get ky kid to school and go make some bacon.

It got me thinking about my level of exhaustion. Like I can't remember when I wasn't exhausted lately. Okay - more like I've been pooped for a good long time - fog brain at work, hitting the coffee twice a day, too tired to clean in the mornings or make lunches, ready for bed as soon as I get home (so microwave yourself some leftovers I'm sitting down). Fend for yourselves, people.

Many days, I don't want to get out of bed in the morning. I often force myself to go to the gym. Yes, I usually feel better once I'm moving around. But afterward I just want to sit and be still. The wheezing tipped me off to the fact that I'm not my total-badass-self anymore, doing more before 9am than most people do all day and it might be my asthma. Okay, my untreated asthma. Asthma that for several years, up until about last March, was medicated with some pretty heavy duty drugs to keep it controlled.

After the wheezing, I tested my breathing and noticed that it was about 100 points below my optimal - 325ish instead of 450. After the nebulizer treatment I felt shaky from the drugs but more alert and able to focus. Until the treatment wore off about 4 hours later. I pushed through the day and treated again in the evening. Shaky at first but slept like a champ. Treated again before working out. Pushed hard but the asthma really slows me down. In retrospect, even when walking only a couple of blocks at a quick clip.

Maybe, just maybe, I need to head to the pulmonologist and see if I can do this with less drugs than before.

More later. I'm tired now and if all goes well, I can get 2 more hours of sleep in before forcing myself to get up and do it all over again tomorrow.

Monday, May 20, 2013

Happy Day

At this very moment, I'm just sitting here not working on supplemental application materials for jobs I'm applying for.

God DAMN people want a lot of information in writing. What's a letter of interest if it's not a cover letter? And what the hell is different about a cover letter than a supplemental essay on how your skills and experience make you a good candidate for the position? I mean, considering that's really what you've included in your cover letter. Sheesh! I took a second day off of work to do this crap and haven't made too much of a dent. Okay, vent over.

Otherwise life is good. Twig's performance schedule is OVER! Wahoo! Weekends are free again! Only 4 more Mondays of Second grade. Oh, shit. That reminds me. Spider report is due on Wednesday and I have more work to do! Yes, I have more work to do. 

Who am I again?

Oh, that's right. The woman who took the day off of work (even though she shouldn't have) to work on job applications and my second grade spider report.

Ugh. I just want to go to sleep.

Friday, May 17, 2013

Question of The Week

What will it take, Wonelle?

To move past this place of using old habits or techniques that no longer serve you?

Have you hit rock bottom yet?

There's A Megaphone In My Ear

It began before 5 am. Around 4:30, I'm assuming, as it took a while of seething before I finally looked at the clock.

My mom who's been here since Saturday... I convinced her to stay an extra couple of days (my sister got a babysitter so she could)... Is leaving this morning.

I know she's trying to be quiet and she thinks she's being quiet. But she's not. Every single move she's made since she got up at 4:30am has reverberated through Twigs room, the bathroom, the hall and into my ears like she was standing next to my bed doing whatever the Fuck she's doing. Folding plastic bags, dropping shit on the floor, changing the Fucking toilet paper roll, breathing.

It's terrible, I know, that I'm kind of glad that she's leaving. This trip has been harder on me than all of the others. Maybe because I didn't initiate this one. Maybe because there was no real goal in mind for her. Just visiting.

Maybe it's the intense mood swings I've been having all week that are getting in the way. Yeah, I'm physically exhausted and my hormones are out of whack.

It sure would be nice to blame those things, or a million others. But I can't. The problem lies within me. And her, I guess. Our stuff. History, I'm thinking and I bet my Nice Lady will have something to say about it when we talk this morning.

She asks questions that are inappropriate. She snoops through our shit. She makes negative or judgemental comments about Twig's experience or whatever in front of him. She doesn't pick up on the subtle, and sometimes in-her-face ques to shut the Fuck up. She vacuums without asking if I want her to do it and then expects me to fall all over her for doing so (she probably just wants me to notice). She gets in the middle of my parenting, trying to soften what it is I'm trying to do when softening is unnecessary. She feels uncomfortable and makes whatever is happening about her. It's NOT about her. She doesn't know her own time and space. I don't know how to speak my peace in a way that she will hear and respect my wishes.

I probably haven't been the most fun to be with this week. It's maybe been a little better than I feel. But maybe not. What I am sure of is that everything is loud as Fuck lately.

It's 5:48am and I want some Fucking peace and quiet.

That'll have to wait until tomorrow. She's blow drying her hair.

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Too Much

Wood used to say "Girl, you're too much!" To which I'd respond "I'm just right and don't you forget it."

Tonight he made me a whiskey sour. When I finished it, he made me a second. It was a silly evening. We laughed and giggled. I fell asleep with Twig and it didn't matter that his bedtime was after 9pm for the second time this week. He got his homework started and it's late opening tomorrow so we can really sleep in. We enjoyed each other and there was no arguing. Score.

Whiskey, on the other hand... No score. I woke up at about 1:30am with a headache. Belly ache. Congestion. Alcohol induced insomnia. Too much of what I do not need.

Meditation for the rest of this week will focus on: strength, abundance, capability, an open and welcoming environment to move to, health, exercise, diet and self care. Essentially, making well considered choices that are in my best interest.

Somehow, a Whiskey Sour or any of his brethren, aren't on that list. Oh, yeah, they're too much of the wrong kind. Wonelle, don't forget that!