Time Heals, But Leaves Scars

Well, it’s been a terrible year so far.

Closed the year with less than half an office. Mom got pneumonia and ended up in the hospital. Keagan died. Work sucks. Still have no idea what to do with my life. Turning 30 in 116 days.

It’s true what they say, that time heals all wounds, but they don’t tell you that it leaves scars. You never forget how much hurt or how bad it felt, and if you’re anything like me, you live in terror of feeling it again.

Without Keagan around, I’ve been able to spread my love around more. By that I mean that I’m paying more attention to the remaining animals, not that I’ve taken up banging strangers. For example, I finally got Bdo on some itch medication, so he’s more comfortable than ever now. He’s always had skin allergies, but after Keagan’s passing it became important to me to get the problem handled, instead of just hobbling along as we have for the past seven years. Also, Kira doesn’t annoy me as much, even though she’s still as needy as ever. I have the time to give her now, I guess. I can see now that I was giving most of my time to Keagan, because he was my favorite… so she’s happier, too. I think that’s important.

Kyrie is still as aloof as she’s always been, but now I worry. She’s 14 and a larger breed than Keagan… she’s going to be my next loss, but when will that come? Not soon, I hope… three more years with her would be great. She’s slower than she used to be. She sleeps a lot. I worry she’s depressed, and maybe she is, too. Keagan was with her for 13 years. That’s a long time to have someone around. I keep trying to give her attention and get her to play, but she’s just not 100% interested. Still hurting, I guess. She kept thinking one day I’d come home and bring Keagan with me. She looked for him for over a week… and the day she didn’t look anymore was heartbreaking. She’s doing better than that day, but she still seems… sad. I guess that’s to be expected.

I’ve also taken to obsessively worrying about my mother. She still isn’t right. Next week we’re going to a pulmonary specialist to see if she has asthma or COPD. She’s not happy about it, and the doctor really wants us BOTH to get tested for sleep apnea, but it is what it is. I need her to be better… I didn’t know what I was going to do without her, and I don’t want to meditate on that again for a long while.

Seems the universe has decided that year 29 will be the worst year ever… it kind of has been. I’m emotionally more stable, but in general everything is terrible. If I wasn’t medicated, I might be dead now… I don’t even know how I got through having to put Keagan down myself. I couldn’t have done that before. I’d have rather died myself. I guess that’s a testament to the drugs, but I’m getting really tired of things just making me stronger instead of killing me, tbh.

I was getting frustrated at my depression over Keagan in the last entry… but I do think that it’s better to know why you’re depressed than to just be depressed for seemingly no reason. I knew what to be mad at, and I knew what caused me pain…. it didn’t make the pain better, but at least when people asked what was wrong I could tell them.

I’m still sad. A lot. I’m sleeping more than usual. My eating habits are whacked out again… but I guess it’s getting better. I ordered a necklace with a good picture of me and Keagan in it…. that helped. I still need to find a good one to hang in the house, but until my internet gets fixed tomorrow I’ve been unable to flip through all my pictures to find a good one.

Things are bad. I hate everything. But even with all the animosity for living that I have, and all the tears I’ve shed in the past 6 months… I’m still not as sad as I used to be… and all that tells me is that I was really fucking sad…

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Secret Vacation

So. I got some vacation time this week.

I was talking to Bosslady about how I was going to lose my vacation this year. You see, at my place of work if you don’t USE the vacation, you LOSE it, because the company doesn’t pay it out. So, I was telling Bosslady how I lost my vacation and she was like NO YOU DID NOT!!! TAKE THE VACATION! NOW!

So, I was on vacation this week. I didn’t tell anyone, because… they might wanna do stuff… and I had things I wanted to get done.

I cleaned mom’s house Monday. I didn’t CLEAN IT clean it, but I vacuumed like four times for dog hair, cleaned the bathrooms, and mowed the lawn.
Tuesday I had problems doing things… Kinda wore myself out Monday, I guess. Still, I managed to mow my front and backyard.
Wednesday I went to Lowes for some garden stuff, including some Lois flowers. They’re called Lantana, and my grandma, Lois, grew them in giant bushes in Florida.

Wednesday evening I called to be sure Mothership had left work and she was NOT good. She was dizzy and nauseous, so I went and got her from work. When we got home she threw up… and I panicked. It was too much like that day I had to take her to Urgent Care… I don’t know if I can survive her in the hospital again. Fortunately, I set her up in bed and she woke up much better. That meant that I had to take her back to work Thursday, though.

So this morning I took her to work. It was a pleasant enough ride. Afterward, since I had a blood pressure check on that side of town at 1030 anyways, I went to Village Inn for breakfast. It wasn’t my best idea to eat before a blood pressure check. The omelet upset my stomach, which I think raised my blood pressure some; also: salt content. So I went in for the check and it was 138/90. That’s good, but it’s not quite where they wanted it to be. As a result, my doctor increased my Procardia. Doubled it, actually.

Here is the baffling thing about this experience.

My shrink reduced my Effexor because she thought it was raising my blood pressure. Last week, after I saw Joe and had better blood pressure, I got her to agree to increase it again and let me keep the Wellbutrin. That was major. Because it’s not as low as they wanted it, my Effexor might be in danger again.

I can’t go back to how I was before the Effexor. I woke every morning wishing I hadn’t. It’s no way to live. While I’m not 100% great right now, I’m better. That little bit of better is so important to me. I’ll do anything to keep the Effexor. That’s an important determination to make, because the Procardia is causing some tiredness and joint pain… and this flushing thing where I’m just super hecking hot a lot of the time. Procardia is not pleasant when you tend to get every single side effect known to occur… but I can’t go back. I need the Effexor because I like wanting to live.

Admittedly, the tiredness and joint pain is hindering my former burst of energy that I got with the Effexor, but I’m still better on the Effexor than off of it.

We’ll just have to see how this plays out. Tomorrow I wanna do more yard work, and I’m getting the dogs groomed. It would be great to have a nice backyard to read in…

Mom’s Anxiety

I work with my mom. It’s kind of nice, but it’s also kind of awful.

It’s not awful for the reasons that other people I’ve known hate working with family, which is usually that they wanna do work one way and the parent wants it done another, and ‘omg my dad/mom isn’t respecting my abilities as an adult’ blah blah blah. No, my work experience came with totally different trials and tribulations. I was always held to a higher standard than other employees, because my mom never wanted anyone to say that I had it easy. So, she made it ten times harder; I think she was hoping I’d quit. I was never allowed to file a complaint about another employee, because that could be see as an act of nepotism. So, I just had to grin and bear it, even when people made my life a living hell. More than once I looked for other jobs because I wasn’t allowed to file complaints and I wasn’t sure I could stand to come to work another day. Fortunately, those people eventually left. She never even wanted me to work there, and for the first few years she treated me like I didn’t belong at all. Instead of backing off, though, I felt like I had to prove her wrong… and now I’m her second in command.

The biggest problem with working with my mother is that my entire life I’ve been going to work with her. She couldn’t get a sitter for most of my childhood, so when I was sick, or there was a day off from school, I ended up at work with my mom. She always put me to work, too. When I was a kid, she’d give me simple work to do, like putting stuff in order alphabetically or numerically, since I was at work with her anyways. It wasn’t until I got a little older that I realized how much time she really spent at work, because when I was old enough to come home and lock the door behind me (at all of age 10) I spent a lot of time alone. That only lasted for about six years, at which point I could drive and started going to work after school… and… well I just never stopped coming to work.

During that six years where I spend a lot of time alone I watched a lot of PBS, learned to cook, and spent my evenings pretending not to notice my mother was wiped out and depressed. There was a stretch where she changed jobs every single year for like five years, and I wasn’t sure she was gonna make it through that, because she’d just come home and cry. There was when she worked at a multi-franchise store, all the terrible bosses that berated her, and the time she got let go because a company bought her store and brought in their own people. What I learned from watching my mother was that A, work was awful, 2, no matter how you feel you go to work because money is more important than happiness or health, and D, there’s nothing that a person can’t get through, even if they don’t come out better on the other side.

Part of why I wanted to prove that I could do everything she threw at me was because I felt like she needed help at work. The downside to that is that now I go to work with her everyday, do a lot of things to help, and she still goes home exhausted and depressed. God forbid anything unexpected or accidental happens: my mother’s anxiety has grown so much over the years I don’t honestly know how she functions. She’s just always in a panic… so I try to field the stress for her, at the expense of my own happiness… which she fights me on, tooth and nail, all the time.

This week, my mother is on vacation. It’s a staycation and she’s trying to do a bunch of work on her house. This morning I got a panicked phone call from her where she was looking at something from home and realized she missed something and now she’s in a panic and how could she be so stupid and how will she fix it and… She’s not having a good vacation anyways, because she’s perpetually mad at her body for being fat and getting old and not doing what she wants it to do. Now she’s already stressing over next week when she’s back.

I want to move to Oregon. Yes, I have a good friend there that I’d like to be closer to, and yes, I’d like to live somewhere mostly devoid of snow, but mostly I want to move somewhere that I can get a job and take care of my mother. She doesn’t want that. She stresses about if she can keep going to work, and how much money she can pull from social security, versus how much she’d get if she waited longer. She’s tried to get me to move back home to the south because it’s cheap and there’s “family” down there, so when she dies I’m not alone. She worries about everything and won’t let me just take care of her. I guess she fancies she’s not old enough for me to need to do that yet, but emotionally she’s like 197. Someone should take care of her.

I don’t know what to do about my mom. I don’t know what to do about me.

Hell of a pair we make… an older woman with major depression and a bipolar kid stuck in a bad mood for about two years now. Something has to change… even if I have to drag her, kicking and screaming to a place where things could be better.

Side Effects

It’s 3am and I’m awake for two reasons… 1, I had to Pee but 2, Abilify fucks with your dreams.

The weekend was weird for me and side effects. 

Friday night I went to karaoke. Does Abilify interact with alcohol? Absolutely, but not like I thought it would. Usually you end up being a lightweight and acting a fool when you try to drink on new drugs. This was not the case, I was just very social. Literally, I didn’t feel drunk at all….  until I was driving home and became aware VERY QUICKLYt that my reaction time was WAY slow… I made it home okay, since the bar was close to home, but in the future if I plan on drinking, it’s worth taking a Lyft. 
Also, as an aside, David2, Bird, and I got invited to an orgy before we left the bar. That’s fun. We all fled… stranger orgies are bad.

Saturday I thought I was dying. In retrospect, a few things probably contributed to this. A, I drank the night before. I didn’t have a hangover the next day, but I’m definitely considering that drinking might elicit more side effects than I previously thought it would. 2, I didn’t take my pill at night. I missed it because I was too busy trying to go out, so I took it in the morning. There is something to be said for what you sleep through when you take meds at night. D, I panicked. Panic always just makes shit worse.

So I go to see War for the Planet of the Apes with Mothership, and I can barely eat. I’ve developed this thing where I am full most of the time, but I get hungry more often. That’s not a listed side effect but it’s a new thing. Then, I get a heart palpitations. That’s a listed side effect, but it’s a terrifying one. I hate that feeling, and when it got coupled with a hot flash and intestinal distress, it’s a spooky side effect that made me think I was potentially having a heart attack. I got dizzy, and upset, and mom ended up having to drive us home.

Mom baffles me. As long as I can remember, if I’m feeling bad, she is meh about it. When I had a kidney stone that sent me to the ER, she took her time getting ready to take me to the ER. She was more concerned about whether I smelled like Jager than the crippling pain I was in. Likewise, when I told her I thought I might be having a heart attack because my heart was racing so bad, she just asked why. To which I quiteangrily said, BECAUSE MY HEART IS RACING AND EVERYTHING IS BAD. I love my mother, and sometimes her eerie calm is handy, like when I had gallstones and was so panicked and pained that all I could do was walk clockwise in a circle and writhe, but in general, her tendency to act unfeeling is unsettling, at best. I’ve begun to wonder if she’s really JUST depressed, or if she, like dad and I, has a mood or personality disorder. She could be histrionic… 

Anyways, she got me home and I spent the rest of the day trying to cool off and recover. That meant I was up late, though, so I filled the time with FFXV again. I also started War of the Worlds before bed. Being able to read again is nice.

Sunday was better. I was up early and got in some gaming time. Mostly I just hung out, but I’m real task oriented. I like to DO things that I was previously unable to do. I got some drawing in, and only suffered one hot flash. I went to mom’s and we watched two episodes of Twin Peaks, and ordered pizza. Before bed I also finished the 15th Oz book. There are 25 of them, but I am stopping here, because that’s how far my collection goes. It was an ok day.

But the dreams. I had been really concerned about the dreams, anyways, because when I was on Risperdol I had awful nightmares, but I’m not having nightmares. My dreams are just real involved. It’s like my cognitive processes don’t shut down at all when I sleep now, so it just runs scenarios over and over, trying to determine the best outcome. I’ve quit my job seven times tonight in my dreams. None end well.

Well, it’s 4am now, and I wanna catch my last hour of sleep. But yeah, I’m not sure what to make of Abilify. I contacted my doc to see what she thinks, but again, she’s a Kaiser doc! And I really don’t think she cares if I die or get better.

Mothership

I’m abnormally close to my mother. Not in a gross way, just in an uncommon way.

After my dad left, things were bad. We were broke. People kept breaking into our house. She lost her job. All kinds of shit just rained down on us from the sky like some cataclysmic plague sent by god. Things got worse and worse, to the point that my mother was selling off our possessions on the side of the road to make ends meet. I even setup my own little stand, at 2 years old, and sold my toys, but I remember it feeling like some kind of game than something dire. Things were bad, really bad, but my mother is the kind of person that made shit work. I never knew things were so bad until I got older.

Things got a little better later. Mom somehow managed to afford my tuition for private school, and a little duplex home. I had a happy childhood, really, but eventually things were bad again. We were strapped.

We moved to another state so that she could get a job and we could have a better life where we didn’t sell all our things to strangers or cut corners on anything and everything. It was a rough start. I remember that we lived in a motel room for a while. That didn’t bother me so much, because after my dad left I started sleeping with her anyways. We eventually found an apartment, but it wasn’t in a good part of town, so I wasn’t allowed to play outside. Instead, I got the master bedroom so I had room to play inside.

Things got better, but not without consequence. Mom finally made enough money to buy a really real house, but landing the sale nearly killed her. Then the overtime she had to work to pay for the house nearly killed her. Also, taking me out of private school nearly killed her. She felt incredibly guilty about the fact that I became a latch-key kid and spent tons of time alone. She’s spent most of my life feeling guilty. Guilty for picking the wrong dad, for not being able to make time, for working too much, for not providing enough, for this, and that, this thing over here…

When I turned seventeen and graduated from high school, she helped me buy the house next door to her, as it was a foreclosure and I kept threatening to move up where the druggies lived: it was all I could afford. The house she’d bought was far too small for me and her to co-habitate (not a word, btw)… At a puny 750 sq ft, we just tripped over each other and got under each other’s skin. We tried to make the house nice, but it never really got there. While it was the most economic thing she ever did for me, I’m not always sure it was our best choice.

I had a house, so I filled it. I filled it with things and pets, and at one point people. In recent years, what was a thing to fill was just became something to hold me back from doing anything. I have too many things. I have too many pets. Somehow I ended up with no people, though. No room for them with all those things and pets.

I never felt like I could move. Moving four dogs and a cat is daunting. Going through all my shit and getting rid of a bunch of it is daunting. More than anything, if I left, I’d leave my mother alone. Most people don’t think twice about that kind of thing, but my mother is single with no family in the state. Really, no family in the world, as the family doesn’t really stay in touch. Her sister is worthless and doesn’t even call to check on her. Mom does have an uncle around her age that checks in on her, but I don’t think she’d like to hang out with him ALL the time.

So leaving would literally leave her here alone. What if something were to happen? It would be my fault. I wouldn’t be here to do anything for her.

But what do you do when you’re not happy?

It’s not a recent thing, but I feel like whenever I talk, my mother gets mad at me. She doesn’t like when I explain thing. She doesn’t like when I tell her fun facts. She seems happier when I don’t know, like she just wants to say something without having things explained to her. It makes me feel like shit, to be honest. I don’t know how to be another way, but my nature seems to irritate her. She’s always accusing me of being agitated just because I’m explanatory and saying I’m getting upset, but I only get upset when I try to tell her something and she just goes, “I dunno.” I AM TELLING YOU. NOW YOU KNOW. WHY DO YOU NOT LISTEN TO ME?!

I’m not sure what to do when I think I’d be better mentally if I were away from her, but can’t bring myself to leave her here alone…

Palm Sunday Miracle

Okay, it’s not a miracle, but I’m super excited about my mother buying me a new computer. She got me an Acer All-In-One… just like… cuz I’ve been looking at computers for months… It’s so nice… I’m in love with it.

My mom is the best.

Today is a much better day than yesterday.
Yesterday morning at 730 my mom called me and I thought she was dying. She wasn’t, but we HAD to get her to a doctor. She’s had a respiratory infection for like a month. Since we’re on Kaiser, though, we couldn’t go to the doctor… I ended up running her to an Urgent Care center… about 20 minutes away. Not really convenient, but we got in pretty quick.

The doctor, a gentleman that I think came from Africa (he had non-specific accent and was very dark), had a fantastic bedside manner, and was very concerned this had been going on so long. So, he gave her a Z pack and prednisone. She was so much better this morning.

After we left the doctor we got breakfast and then saw Power Rangers! I still want to be the yellow ranger. Then we went to Gordman’s because she wanted to walk around… and I had spent the morning thinking she was dying, so I was down for whatever. She bought me a blanket pal, and a weird egg with feet, and some socks. It was a good time.

Today she called to ask me if I wanted Joe’s Crab Shack for lunch. So, we went to Joe’s Crab Shack for lunch. I’d mentioned I’d like her to come look at All-In-Ones with me today, because I was once again looking at what was on the market, but I found one I like and she got it for me. I dunno why, but I love it. Now, I just gotta get the Creative Cloud and get to work. I really hope I can get back in the groove of graphic design, now.

I see my doctor for my depression tomorrow. It’s been an ordeal to reach this point. On Friday, they called me and wanted to say that I couldn’t see her because I have Kaiser. I was like, no… cuz I’m just going to give you money. Money for services. That’s all we’re doing. And like, ugh. It was a whole ordeal and I had to argue with like 7 people. I just hope she can help me… I’m so tired of being tired and sad.

Also, Friday David 2 and I went to the Car Show. It was actually a lot of fun.
We’ve been watching RuPaul’s Drag Race, so we just went back to his place afterward and watched that… drank some wine. It was a good night out!

It was nice to have a pretty good weekend. I hope the week is also this good.

Best to bed.

TTYL.

Dan & Phil Tour!

So I took my mom with me to see Dan & Phil in Denver, because I have no friends and didn’t wanna go alone…. And like… I love DanIsNotOnFire and AmazingPhil…
She didn’t get it… But like…

A, I’m 27… so she laughed at me for being at a thing that was mostly filled with teen girls…. fair. Totes fair.
2, She laughed at me for being so excited about something that was mostly filled with teen girls… also pretty fair. (I do not usually relate on anything with teenage girls… even when I was one…)
D, After the show she was like, “You are an ex-goth that listens to that heavy metal crap, watches gory ass horror movies, and curses like every sentence… isn’t this a little TAME for you? Why are we here?”

Yes, mom. Dan and Phil are very clean-cut, tame, and generally adorable… I have varied interests, just like you taught me to.

What did you think I was taking you to?
A Gwar concert?
You wanna go to a Gwar concert with me, Mom?
We can come home covered in fake blood (maybe real blood), fake piss (maybe real piss), and really real bruises.
Wouldn’t that be fun to take my 61 year old folk-music loving mother to?
I bet she’d enjoy that.

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The show was totally G-Rated… and totally cute. I definitely didn’t understand all the teen girls screaming like they were being murdered, though. Like… teen girls have a lot of emotions… and I understand none of them. It reminded Mothership of the time she took me to an NSYNC concert, and everyone, including the grown women, just SCREAMED LIKE THEY WERE BEING MURDERED the entire time. I dunno why it happens… I don’t do that…

My mom is so weird, though… cuz she already knows I have a broad taste in stuff. In all stuff. I’m an art geek. I listen to ALL KINDS of music. I read. I love movies. I play video games. I like going out. I like staying in. I like black, but sometimes I can be interested in something pink… Like… she knows.

She also knows that if I were gonna take her to something, I’d warn her first. Like, I’d love to take her to a Marilyn Manson or Rob Zombie concert… Slipknot is coming with Manson to the Pepsi Center… and I totes wish I had funds to get tickets… cuz that shit would be hilarious and awesome. Back in the day, Mom was always like, “I bet under those masks Slipknot is just a bunch of pizza faced nerdy kids… you’re worshipping nerd kids…” So… taking her to a Slipknot concert would be HILARIOUS.

Anyways… NOT A DEPRESSING ENTRY TODAY! WOO!