Daily Post 063: Waking Up Awake

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Tuesday was my day of self-care. I still think of it that way even though it turned into a crap-tastic day. I broke that evening. I knew it was coming, I could feel it, I just wasn’t expecting it to be now I guess.

Tuesday I wrote. I had planned to study. I had planned things. A light to-do list, but never the less I had planned for the day to be productive and relaxing.

It started with writing, which helped. It moved from there to paying bills since I was still on the computer. I figured I wouldn’t be able to pay all of my bills this early in the month since I was missing so much of Warren’s contribution, but I figured I could pay rent and have that out of the way. The one major, main bill I have anxiety over would be taken care of.

That quickly turned into realizing that I am short $100 to make the payment. Not that I myself am short. I have my part of the payment. What I am missing is the rest of Warren’s part.

That spiraled into depression and sadness because I do have the savings to cover it, but that’s savings that I already have plans for. Like saving for myself so I have a cushion when my car suddenly breaks down or having to buy a $700 plane ticket to be with a dying family member because I’ve learned from personal experience that shit like that actually happens.

My savings, as meager as it is now, is the emergency money for the shit I can’t plan for. It was money left to me from mom that was never meant to help other people. It was meant to help me and it’s the last of it I have.

I decided, sitting there looking at my bank account and the numbers not working, that I wasn’t going to fix this problem. I wasn’t going to dip into the money I had just transferred into my “Me” fund and I wasn’t going to touch my savings. If Warren wanted rent to be paid then he needed to come up with the rest of his share, otherwise, there would be a late fee and I wouldn’t be the one paying it.

I decided then and there that I was done. I was done being the parent. The problem solver. I was done giving to make things easier for someone else.

I sent him a message saying we were short $100 for rent and then laid on the couch and let the silent tears have their way.

It was seven days until my birthday. Seven days until I’m 29.

Right Brain: Happy birthday! Your gift is not being able to pay rent.

Left Brain: You know… if you want… you can go fuck yourself right now. I’m cool with that.

Warren eventually came downstairs since he woke up. He ignored me for a little bit and I didn’t care. Before he took Bruno out he asked when rent was due. I said not until the 19th but because the amount was so large it takes a few days to transfer it. I said liked having it done as soon as possible to avoid complications.

He asked if it could wait until Friday. He would get paid Friday and he would be able to transfer me more to help out. I said yes. I said once rent was paid that I would have no money for any of the other bills like internet, power, my phone bill or car insurance. It was hard not to cry while admitting to that. That this is what my life is at the moment.

I asked him if I could ask something without it being a bitchy question. Warren said yes, so I asked what happened? What happened to all of the overtime he was supposed to have worked and the promotion with the dollar increase? How are things worse when everything should have been better?

He said that after the first week of the iPhone release his company took away the overtime because the call volume drastically dropped compared to what they were expected. The raise has only just started to kick in since he’s officially out of training. He was also denied FEMA assistance for Erma, which is pretty fucked up.

His side chick, which I realize she’s his companion and I’m being dismissive by referring to her in such a way, but right now, on my blog, in my head, I’m resentful of Warren indulging in things while I feel like I suffer, so yeah, for the time being, she’s Miss Side Chick. Anyway, she’s a Nero Scientist / Therapist / Doctor. Like, legit has a doctorate already and makes complete bank on her own.

She got FEMA assistance of $1000.

Warren on the other hand, who was without power for three days and then without internet for about another week and who could legitimately not work during that entire time, was denied any assistance. Nothing to replace the food we lost. Nothing to replace the income he missed out on because he couldn’t log into work. In fact, he told me he’s being investigated for fraud…

Yeah…

So he’s been trying to catch up from getting screwed in all of those ways.

I’m more understanding of his situation. I’m less irrationally angry and more frustrated with the situation. It sucks, but it is what it is. We’re all doing our best and trying to adult as well as we can.

Warren is assuming his mom is going to send him money for Christmas. She has for years. It hurts knowing he’ll get a Christmas gift from her; that he counts on it being there.

I’m not going to get anything. I’m not going to be in Vegas with my older brother and sister-in-law so I doubt we’ll do more than send text messages to each other. Maybe a phone call. My younger brother and I aren’t going to do much in the way of gift exchange. He mentioned he has bought something for me months ago at Salvation Army because when he saw it he knew it was meant for me, but we’re not wrapping gifts. We’re not going to have “holiday cheer”. We’re going to spend the day much like Thanksgiving; at his apartment surviving, understanding that both of us are sad and trying to hold our shit together.

I’m not going to be getting anything for my birthday either, which I don’t mean to make it sound like these days are about receiving things because they aren’t. I’ve never been big into giving or receiving gifts. I would rather spend time with the people I care about. But always, without fail, there would be a card from mom. AND a phone call. Not just text messages.

I have a meeting at work on Sunday. We’re doing a secret Santa exchange. We’re most likely going to be doing birthday wishes since a few of us have birthdays either recently passed or coming up. I don’t want to get a card from them. I don’t want it acknowledged. I don’t want to pretend like there isn’t a wound there that is having salt unintentionally ground into it. I don’t want to pretend like I’m ok with where I’m at in life when I’m not.

Tuesday I realized that I went from working out three hours five days a week to a single hour a week. Since the end of April, since getting this job, I have done nothing but give up my “Me” time. I work to the point where on my days off I don’t have it in me to do anything other than sleep. On the days I do train I also have to donate plasma now, so afterward I can’t do anything intense like sparring.

It sucks. I’m not ok with any of this.

Wednesday, yesterday, I woke up and wanted to cry at the thought of having to get out of bed and go to work for 16 hours. I hit snooze more than I should have. I was slow in the shower. I didn’t want to eat. I didn’t finish my coffee. I put on my scrubs and made sure everything was packed for the day before fighting through the pain, tears running down my cheeks, as I walked to my car.

I drove to work. I tried not to break down as I put my bag down and switched into my work shoes. The day was rougher then it needed to be since I was working with Star Lord. That’s the nickname he has at the clinic. I don’t know the story behind it. He’s not a bad guy, but he’s super slow. On all of the days where I’ve had him as my RN, it’s felt like we’ve been short a person because he does so little. He takes 40 minutes to put one patient on the machine. He leaves tasks halfway finished because he hasn’t figured out how to multitask in such a fast-paced and demanding environment.

I’ll be the first to throw up my hand and admit that I was slow and disoriented in the beginning. I messed up and made things harder for my teammates for a while I’m sure. I was the weakest link and I’m sure when people saw my name on their side of the clinic there was an inward sigh of “fuck me… ”

But I’m no longer that person. I’m a strong and confident member of the team; to the point where some people prefer to work with me over others. In eight months I have gotten to the point where I am on par.

Star Lord isn’t there and I don’t think he ever will be. I don’t think he’s cut out for this type of environment. I think a lot of his slowness is from hesitation and insecurity but instead of rising to the challenge he’s shrinking away from it which is why he isn’t getting better.

It means the people he works with have to pull his weight. It means patients are an hour or more late getting on the machine. It means that trickles into all of the other shifts. It means breaks get messed up. It means it’s a rough day when it didn’t need to be one.

That’s what yesterday was. I knew when I saw his name on the schedule it would be like that. I was tapped out before the day had begun and it was going to be a hard, long day.

I think I did well most of the day. I worked as best I could and that’s all I could do. By the time we got to third shift it was the home stretch. No other patients were going to be coming in. There were six CVCs to take care of. That’s a lot, but we got everyone on the machine.

My final patient was having complications. We got the clinical coordinator over to check out her CVC and to clear her for her treatment. I completed her CVC care and got her connected to the machine and dialyzing. Everything was finally settling down. Everyone was on. I could start cleaning up the unused chairs and closing stations down. I could be done with people for a little bit.

Only I couldn’t because five minutes later that same patient wanted to be taken off the machine so she could use the restroom. And it’s not like she could walk on her own. She’s in a wheelchair and wanted me to take her to the restroom. I had to rinse her back, secure her CVC which has been hurting her because two of the stitches are bothering her, so she’s in pain as I’m trying to take care of her, then help transfer into her chair…

It felt like a lot, like too much. I just needed a break from having to do something for someone else. I wanted to go home. I wanted to cry. But I didn’t. I took her to the restroom, went back on the floor to clean until the assistance light started flashing, went back to the restroom to get my patient, got her back on the machine, then went back to cleaning.

I listened to music while making needle packs. I took my final break. I spent about 20 minutes afterward making CVC kits in the stockroom, alone, listening to more music.

We were out of terminations like I knew we would be. We’ll be out of them again by the end of today, but I don’t go back to work until Saturday so it’s someone else’s problem on Friday. According to the log I am the only person who has made CVC kits for the past 14 days of December. That’s pretty shitty and something I will bring up at the meeting on Sunday. We need a better system with the CVC kits because right now ours isn’t working.

I didn’t leave the clinic until around 9 pm last night. I didn’t get home until 9:30. It was a long day. Kyle was in the living room. I didn’t care. I ate dinner in the kitchen. I went upstairs and brushed Scarlet for a while. I took a shower. I fell asleep with my light on.

I woke up at midnight. Everyone was asleep by then. I went downstairs and ate again then fell back asleep on the couch. When I woke up it was light outside. I had a moment of freaking out thinking I had overslept and missed my training session, but it was only 7:40. I had plenty of time.

Today I woke up feeling awake.

I’m not sure how to really describe it or if anyone else has ever had that feeling. I woke up feeling clear-headed and aware. I wasn’t sad or tired. I wasn’t injured feeling. I felt like myself with my own perspectives rather than the fuzziness or fog or weight that I’ve been contending with.

I don’t know if my break down Tuesday has anything to do with this feeling, which I just realized I mentioned it but never explained what happened.

Tuesday didn’t recover from the “can’t pay rent” realization. I didn’t go out and study. I stayed on the couch and slept. For the few hours I wasn’t asleep I watched more of Fate/Stay Night. I hurt. I knew I hurt. I knew there wasn’t going to be anything to make it feel better. I knew I didn’t want to smoke. I knew I couldn’t drink because I’m trying to stay hydrated.

In the evening Kyle came downstairs and asked if he could have the TV when I was done. I was just starting another episode of Fate/Stay Night which I really didn’t want to watch. I knew it wouldn’t make me feel better I just didn’t know what else to do so I had let it start on its own.

I told him I was done. He could have it. I got up and put my dishes in the kitchen. I knew I sounded like I was on the verge of tears because I was. As I was walking by him to get to the stairs Kyle tried to poke my arm. It’s a thing we have, from the Facebook poke feature I guess. We randomly poke each other and say, “Poke”. It’s stupid and I know it is and I couldn’t handle it last night.

He reached out to poke me and I backed away.

Me: I’m sorry. I hurt right now. It’s seven days until my birthday.

It was only three sentences, but it was the first time I verbally told anyone that I hurt. It was the first time admitting my fear even though I didn’t really say it was a fear. I’m scared of my birthday. I don’t want it to come. My throat kept getting tighter as I said those words and even though they were so few by the end I thought I would choke if I had to say more.

I think Kyle tried to say something to me but I was so close to breaking down that I didn’t stay to listen. I jogged up the stairs as fast as I could and bearly closed the door before I started sobbing.

I hate how all of my writings recently seem to come back to this. Me crying. Me talking about mom. Me missing her and obsessing over the fact that she’s dead. I’m sure it’s annoying to read. At what point am I going to get on with my life and stop whining about not having her?

It’s my second birthday without her.

It sucks.

It sucks and I hate this. Even though there’s a lot of really awesome things in my life now like Big Bad and Master and jiujitsu when I’m able to actually get to the dojo and losing 20% body fat and leaving Full Sail, this one thing, this one piece of my life overshadows all of that. Or at least makes it break even to where I’m neutral.

I have all these things. I have all of this confidence in myself.

I don’t have my mom.

I won’t have a phone call from her on the 20th. I won’t have a birthday card. I won’t have an “I love you.”

I knew this time would be the hardest for me, which is why I took the coming week off from work. I only have 20 hours of PTO to cover it. That means my check is going to be short by half.

This is why I have my savings. This is why I’m not going to take care of other people anymore. Because there are still going to be times where I need to take care of myself, like know. Like on April 4th; the two-year mark.

I cried for a really long time Tuesday night and I cried hard and I didn’t care if my roommates could hear my screams through my pillows. I didn’t care if my grief made anyone else uncomfortable because in that moment I was bleeding out on my bed all of the hurt and pain that I have been trying to work with and breath around and hold on to because I have to go to work, I have to donate plasma, or grocery shop, or take care of laundry, or any of the number of life things that I “need” to take care of.

I can’t stop and deal with the pain. I can’t cope with it and slow down and let myself heal the way I need to. I have to keep up with society. I have to keep functioning because you can’t not function in the world we’ve allowed to develop.

Tuesday night I gave zero fucks and I cried all of it into my pillows.

I eventually calmed down. I looked at my phone and had a message from Kyle saying he was sorry. He hasn’t meant to push me.

I said there was nothing to be sorry for. That he had done nothing wrong and that I would get better eventually even though I didn’t have a specific time for when that would happen.

He offered for me to come downstairs and watch the rest of The Incredible Hulk with him since we had watched part of it Sunday night before I had to call it quits to get to sleep on time.

I said I might cry if I came downstairs to which he replied that was ok.

I got up. I showered. I changed into comfy pjs. I took my contacts out and put my glasses on. I dragged my fuzzy blanket with me. It’s not as awesome as Big Bad’s fuzzy blanket, but it’s a decent substitute. I curled up in “my” corner of the couch and we finished watching the movie together.

I wasn’t ready to go to work on Wednesday, not after Tuesday night, but I did it. I survived it and I only have one more day of work to get through before my week off.

And so now I’m at today.

I woke up feeling “with it”. I don’t know how else to explain it.

I trained really well. I know my arms will be sore tomorrow and I’m looking forward to it.

I only have one more training session left with L before I have to buy more. I don’t think I’m going to, though. Right now I can’t justify that much money. But I think that’s ok. On Tuesdays and Thursdays there a 6:30 am jiujitsu class at the dojo. I can go there in the morning before school. I can potentially do boxing/kickboxing during the afternoons. I can definitely get to Title Club on Fridays, which I’ll start having off in January. That also leaves me Sundays which I’ll be able to start working out on again since I won’t be working two 16 hour shifts in a row anymore.

I do have three hours worth of personal training I bought from Title Club during October while they were doing a super awesome deal. I haven’t cashed that in yet because I haven’t had time to, but my instructor knows about my situation and agreed that the new year would work best for him as well. That’s where I’m going to start focusing on footwork and how to move in the ring with an opponent.

So maybe for this first semester of school, it would be good to back off of the personal training with L and to focus on finding a rhythm with the dojo again. It would also be a break financially which could help things righten themselves.

Kyle hasn’t mentioned anything about his old job but I’m pretty sure he should get the background check cleared by the end of this week.

I gave my FA the form he needed to fill out for my certification yesterday. He was supposed to get it back to me but didn’t, so I’m going to text him and see if he could email it to me. That’s another part of what my savings are going to go towards. My company will reimburse me for the certification fee, but I still have to cover it on my own up front. That’s close to $300.

Hooray…. said no one ever.

I do plan to study today after donating, which I’m about to go do after I shower once more.

I feel stronger today then I have in a while. I know I’m going to have dark days ahead of me, some of them in the very near future, so for right now I’m going to enjoy the warmth and clarity that I feel within myself and get as much done as I can. The more I do know the less rough the hard days will be even if I lose sight of that while I’m in them.

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Daily Post 060: I’m Proud That I’m Actually Writing A Daily Post

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So I’m going to try to write this… while drinking a drink that I for serious accidentally made too strong. I’m most likely not going to finish it, which is ok because it will still be good tomorrow evening.

Anyway, I have the living room for roughly 30 minutes to myself. 30 minutes of silence and what I’m going to start referring to as pseudo-solitude, since I’m “alone”, but my roommates are still home so I’m really not. Or at last one of them is still home. The other is most likely out banging his chick even though he was short on rent. Not that I have resentment over the fact that he won’t leave the house to do something useful like donate plasma so he can finally get his finances straight, or, I don’t know, take hit contracts on the black market.

This writing may be a bit blunter than normal… damn you alcohol for making me not care about causing offense. Damn you.

So Warren isn’t here, but Kyle is, and I actually just kicked him out of the living room. And by kick out I mean I had anxiety for about 30 minutes since I walked through the door and saw he was in the middle of some B rated demonic movie thing. I dropped my lunch box off on the kitchen counter then went upstairs to shower. Once I had washed the day away, all while trying to figure out how to ask for the living room without sounding like a dick, I came downstairs and put the day’s dishes into the dishwasher, set it to run, then finished washing the crock pot by hand.

I putts around a bit more, heating up my dinner, making my drink, then I finally had nothing else to do to procrastinate further.

I walked into the living room, set my stuff down at my computer and asked Kyle if I could have the living room for 30 minutes before I went to sleep.

He didn’t say anything but turned the TV and Playstation off then went upstairs.

You know what? I really don’t care if he’s upset. I worked a 16 hour day. I agreed to work the first three hours of co-workers shift tomorrow so she could actually get sleep tonight. She’s closing the clinic right now. She might not even be out of work yet and it’s 10 pm. She has an hour drive home, and yet the schedule has her working at 5 am tomorrow morning.

I told her that I could cover some of her hours for her. She said she could be there at 8 am. No later than 8:45 which leaves me with enough time to get to my training session with L. I told her that worked for me. I would rather her be able to make it through her day. I can always take a nap or go to sleep early before my shift on Friday.

This means I should have a few hours of overtime, which will be nice paycheck wise, but also hour wise. It means I’ll more than likely be able to cover most if not all of my week off without having to suffer financially. In theory, I’ll have the PTO to cover it.

So yeah. I have an early wake-up call. I want some time to myself, for myself, before I have to wake up and give the little I’ll have in my reserves to other people. The cool thing is I’ll be out of the clinic before change over happens. So I’ll I really need to do is put the first shift of patients on and do some of the morning chores.

I’m pretty sure I’ll be alright.

Today wasn’t a bad day. Though it started off kind of rough.

There’s one patient who got mad at me last Friday. She wanted to be off the machine at a specific time since her transportation has been leaving without her. I told her we, as in, the whole team, would make sure she got off on time. Normally this isn’t an issue. That morning ended up getting crazy, though, and even though we took this particular patient off the machine early, she still ended up being left by her transportation.

Since I was the tech who took her out into the lobby she blamed me for the transportation leaving her essentially stranded at the clinic. She said we didn’t care about her and that she wanted to talk to the FA.

It hurt. I was almost in tears as I went back to the clinic floor and continued with my day. That was the second time I’ve had a patient be mad at me. I eventually got over it, but I was glad I didn’t have to work Monday so I didn’t have to see her, and I was hoping to be on B side of the clinic today so even though she would be there, I wouldn’t have to interact with her.

As luck would have it, I was on A side, which meant she was one of the patients I had to care for. I helped transfer her into her chair, but another team member did her treatment initiation, which I was grateful for. About 50 minutes into the treatment the charge nurse called EMS for her because of complications. We think she has an infection since she has bedsores which aren’t being cared for.

But yeah, I feel sort of bad for not feeling worse about her going to the hospital. I’ve seen her treat other teammates unkindly. It’s not that I wish ill on her. But I don’t feel bad either. I think I’m closer to feeling nothing which might be worse.

I hope she gets the care she needs and I hope if / when she comes back she isn’t a jerk to me or the people I care about.

That was the main ad hoc event of the day, but since it happened fairly early in the first shift it didn’t domino into second shift.

The day went smoothly after that. I got to watch a teammate mix acid in the water room so I can start helping with that in the future. It seems easy enough. I told my teammate that I would want to see it done one more time, then most likely have someone watch me do it once or twice, but overall I think it’s pretty simple.

I got out of the clinic at 8:30. I’ve started assuming I won’t leave until 9 pm. I find it’s better to overestimate than under. I still budget for 36 hours, but as far as my calendar goes, I would rather assume I have fewer hours to work with rather than more when planning the events in my life. That way I can be pleasantly surprised when I get free time rather than seething with blind fury over having to cancel plans.

So that’s pretty much been my day.

All of the cooking is done, so all I really need to do tomorrow, other than cover the first three hours of first shift, is train, donate plasma, and maybe laundry.

I’m ahead on studying, but it would be good to continue tackling that. I guess it depends on how tired I feel after donating.

Even though there are four chapters left in my book there’s really only two more chapters that pertain directly to me. One of the chapters is about reusing dialyzers, which my clinic doesn’t do. The other chapter is about becoming a preceptor, or trainer, which has nothing to do with the actual dialysis process. I’m still going to read them, though.

Once I finish the book I plan to take the practice test offered by my company. I also want to look online to see if there are flashcards or anything already made. I want to see if my flashcards line up with what other people study for the certification. I usually end up studying more because I make flashcards for random facts that I think are interesting, but not nessiccarily required to know.

Anyway… Yeah. I’m almost done with the book. It would be nice to get through it in the next two-ish weeks. Definitely before the end of the month. That’s completely do-able if I keep up with the chapter a week pace that I’ve been going. That means I’m on course to taking the test early January. Since school starts the 9th, it would be cool to get the certification during the first week of the new year that way it’s done and I won’t have to figure out when to take it between work and my class.

I got my “Me” savings account created yesterday. It was actually super, insanely painless. I walked into my bank and told the greeter that I wanted to see about opening a second savings account. They entered me into the queue, which had no one in it, and asked that I wait in the lobby for one of the representatives to speak with me. I waited all of two minutes. I let them know what I wanted. They created a new savings account for me, and that was that.

Poof.

Done.

Like magic.

I’ve transferred $300 to it already. That’s still $78 short of the 27-week mark, but I think I’ll be able to transfer that through the month. And really, since that’s where I want to be in the first week of January, I have five weeks to come up with it.

I think I’m also going to give myself $500 to spend on myself between my birthday and Christmas. This is money that will go to things like getting my hair bleached since the roots have grown out. Most likely getting it trimmed too, along with my brows waxed because what the hell, it’s my birthday.

Maybe I’ll get a new keyboard finally. And a new headset. I’ll most likely take into account my World of Warcraft renewal, and subtract that from the $500.

I need to sit and budget out what I want to see how far I can make $500 stretch. I’m pretty sure I can do a lot with it, though, and I don’t think I want all that much.

That’s for another day. Right now I’ve finished my “too strong” drink along with my dinner. I’ve also had the living room for close to an hour rather than 30 minutes so I should go. I’ll also only be getting about 4 hours of sleep, which I can work with. It would be better to get only 3, that way I’m not in the middle of a REM cycle when my alarm goes off. God, that’s the worst.

Anyway. Yeah. Good night. Thanks for letting me ramble.

 

Letters to Mom 015: I Need You Right Now

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Mom. I really need to talk to you.

When I got off the phone with Jon I didn’t know what to do. I didn’t know who to call. I knew I needed to talk to someone but you’re the person I wanted to call and you’re the one person I can’t.

I know I won’t be able to hear your voice and I’m sorry that still hurts. I’m sorry this wasn’t the first thing I thought of after getting off the phone with him. I’m sorry this still doesn’t feel like enough sometimes and that I still wish you were here.

Jon can’t pay rent next month. His roommates are screwing him over just like mine are doing to me.

I know you would be frustrated with both of us. I know if you were still here you would be helping us as much as you could. I know Jon and I would both feel like failures if we actually asked you for help.

I get angry at people like Warren. He came downstairs shortly after I got off the phone with Jon. He saw I was upset and trying not to cry and he asked what was wrong.

I told him Jon wasn’t able to pay rent.

Warren said something along the lines of that’s the plight of our generation and how Jon could ask Jason for help. I told him, no, he couldn’t. Jason loves us and is our brother, but he’s not going to help, and Jon isn’t going to ask.

Jon and I don’t have that luxury anymore; that safety net. Not like Warren does. We can’t go to our parents and say, “Oh no. We messed up. Please help us undo this terrible decision.”

I had 9 dollars to my name this morning. I told Warren that last night. He said the online banking system was having issues but that he was trying to get his payment to me. I told him it would be appreciated because I had 9 dollars and was unable to buy groceries.

There wasn’t a deposit in my account this morning when I woke up. Warren sleeps until noon since he works the late shift. I couldn’t spend the day waiting to get money to do the things I needed to do. I don’t have time to wait on other people like that. I can’t “Life” things like cook or grocery shop on days where I work 16 hours. I have to do everything on my days off or it has to go undone.

Because of that I had to use my credit card to get food, which isn’t all that bad. I mean, hey, I was able to get food, and pay for my new car tags, but it sucks. I have to pay interest on that money. I shouldn’t have to use my card because someone doesn’t pay me on time. I shouldn’t have to pay interest as a punishment for other people slacking off because it’s not there account that has 9 dollars in it.

It’s so ungodly frustrating, mom. I want to be able to help Jon. I want to be able to tell him that it’s ok. That we’ll figure it out together. But I can barely keep myself afloat. I can’t take care of three people. I can’t save anyone else, and it sucks because he’s my brother. He’s the one I should be there for and he’s the one who’s having to suffer because one of my roommates is still unemployed and the other can’t get his shit together financially even though he worked a fuck ton of overtime with the iPhone release AND got a dollar raise.

How? HOW are you STILL having financial issues? What the actual fuck?

I’m terrified that Jon’s going to have to drop out of school to get a job that he hates just to make ends meet. I’m terrified that he’s going to become another statistic in dissatisfied America who got screwed over and gave up.

I hate where I’m at, mom.

I hate how I worked 30 hours in two days and was so tired on Sunday that I slept for 14 hours. I hate how next Monday I work and I’m going to have to miss my night with Big Bad. I hate how I wasn’t supposed to close the clinic on Saturday, but I ended up doing it which screwed over my whole night. Louis and I had made plans to see each other. I was supposed to leave at five. We were looking forward to our evening; to seeing each other more than once.

It was my light at the end of the tunnel. I got up even though I didn’t want to. I fucking killed it at work. I was a total bawce and several of my coworkers mentioned it. But I still had to give up my night. I had to give up my plans.

Nothing I did or have done was good enough to mean anything. Just like how my awesome credit score and pristine renters history didn’t matter when I needed an apartment when I was unemployed. It didn’t matter that I could pay all of the rent up front. None of my past, none of my actions, mattered.

That’s what Saturday felt like. Nothing mattered.

Life: Fuck you, Jen. And the horse you rode in on. And the one that sired it, just for safe measure.

You know what? No. Fuck you, Life. I’m so sick of your bullshit.

I’ve given up the dojo. I’m giving up my plasma. I’ve given up my room and having my computer with me.

When is it enough? When am I allowed to feel secure? When am I allowed to have things for me and to not be injured by other people?

I’m so angry and frustrated right now, mom. I’m tired of this constant fucking struggle to make things work, only for them not to, so I have to find a different way and that way works for a while but then there’s another roadblock that I have to figure out. It’s always an uphill battle and the few things that make it feel worth it always feel like their taken away from me.

It’s not fair. And I feel like a four-year-old for saying that, but it’s true. It’s so fucking unfair right now. Why, if I do everything right, if I’m such an amazing, kind, caring, compassionate person like people say, do I not deserve to feel like life is worth living?

Why can’t I have my hour at the dojo? Why can’t I have my three hours a week with my significant other while everyone else gets to go home to theirs?

Why can’t Jon go to school and not worry about keeping a roof over his head while maintaining his 4.0 gpa? He’s doing so well. I’m so insanely proud of him, and yet I can’t help him not stress. I can’t stretch myself any more than I already am.

I don’t know what to do, mom.

I studied for my certification today. I’m trying to get that out of the way. School starts for me in January. I’m trying to stick with my training as much as I can.

It feels like I’m trying so hard, so why does it feel like I’m not making any progress? Why does it still feel like I’m not doing it good enough, right enough?

I wish I could hear you right now. I wish, out of everyone in the Universe, that you could be the one to tell me things will be ok because you’re the only person I ever believed when you told me those words.

I know things will be ok. I know both Jon and I will make it through this. I just so desperately wish that I knew how. I wish things were already better. I wish all of the struggles and battles I’ve already fought felt worth it, but in this moment they don’t.

I feel tired and drained. I feel alone in my battles and I’m tired of showing up to them. I can’t fight Jon’s battle for him when I’m barely keeping up with fighting my own.

I’m tired of feeling angry. I’m tired of feeling sad. I don’t have tears left to cry for either emotion. I’m going to finish doing my chores and then go spend my one evening with Big Bad. I can’t even drink because tomorrow I have to donate plasma and I’m still behind on my water intake.

I miss you, mom. I promise… I don’t know what I promise. I’m not going to promise to hold it together because I can feel that at some point this season I’m going to break again. I just know it’s going to happen. With my birthday coming up, and Christmas… I just know that I’m going to end up screaming in my car and I don’t care.

I guess I promise to keep my promises I made to you that first day without you; the last day at the hospital.

I promise I’ll get out of bed every day. I promise I’ll eat at least one meal every day. And I promise I’ll at least shower.

I love you, mom. Thanks for listening even if I didn’t figure anything out.

Daily Post 057: Waiting

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I used to write for myself. I used to sit here and let my mind wander through itself, my fingers moving over the keyboard, typing out the melody in my head. The one that always seems so hard to put into words when talking with people. The one that not even I know the notes to half the time. It’s only after writing, after going back and really reading what I wrote than any sort of sense can be made from it. The logic, the pattern, emerging from the chaos of emotions. They, the emotions, exist for a reason, but without writing, that reason always seems elusive, nebulous, and half-formed.

I haven’t been writing. I haven’t been going to the gym or the dojo. I’ve been eeking by. And already I’m on the verge of tears, not so much because I’m depressed. I feel I’m actually recovering from the recent lull in my emotional state. But tears from acknowledging pain. From no longer forcing myself to keep limping forward. From finally sitting, resting, and assessing my wounds, the damage, the trail I’ve traveled and where I have yet to move to.

I know for a while I felt hopeless and pointless again. I felt my grief which so rarely is the crushing tidal wave it was in the beginning. I can see it coming, feel it welling up within myself. I can almost prepare for it. I know the days will be hard and the nights harder. I know waking up will be the most painful part of my day while the rest of it is idle survival of making sure I eat meals and shower and go to work and convince people that I’ll be ok even though I feel I’m bleeding out through a wound in my chest.

I’ve made it up to this point and even though I’ve been drinking and smoking, I feel it’s worth noting that I HAVE survived. I have coped. I have found ways of being self-reliant. I HAVE NOT collapsed or shrugged off my responsibilities. I have fought through most of this year and I have fought hard.

I had a realization last week and I think that’s the main reason I have been feeling slightly less lost.

I have decided that, for the moment, I will wait. I will rest, just like the Earth.

I will rest between now and January. I will make it through Thanksgiving, my second one without mom. I will make it through my birthday, a day I wish wouldn’t come. I’ll make it through Christmas and New Years.

I won’t worry about if I get to the dojo or not. If I’m able to train or how hard I train when I do. I won’t stress over my work schedule making things hard with how inconsistent it is. I won’t give myself shit for not doing much because it’s cold and cloudy and hard to find the will to do all of the things I love doing while it’s warm and sunny out.

It’s winter. It’s a period for rest. Instead of raging and struggling against it I decided at 4 am on a cold Monday morning while smoking a cigarette and drinking my coffee before work that I would try embracing that aspect of this season. I would stop struggling to do and allow myself to rest.

Making that decision let me feel free. It dissolved the feelings of failure for not making it to the gym after work to run when I had already walked eight miles in the clinic. It freed me of so many negative things that I felt tears forming in my eyes from relief.

It was finally ok to wait, to rest, to simply breathe rather than fighting against everything that seems so impossible to overcome.

Sometimes the best course of action is to wait. To allow your opponent to make the first move, opening themselves up so you can land a devastating blow.

In January I start a new path.

I begin the road to becoming an RN, something I never in my life thought I would be. My first class is already paid for. Everything is set, all I have to do is attend the class. The first day of a new direction.

I have a rough sketch of an outline for where I want to go. First, it will be my Associates of Nursing, followed by the Physical Therapist Assistant degree. From there I will transfer to UCF for their Bachelors of Nursing moving into the Masters. From there it will be the Doctorate of Physical Therapy. Along the way or maybe after all of the “official schooling” will be the fitness training program I found while researching into the degrees I wanted. I would like to become a yoga instructor with counseling credentials as well, though I haven’t looked very far into that aspect of my plan.

I want to be a holistic nurse. I want to be a nursing teacher. I want to show people there’s more to health than just the physical body. The mind and spirit are just as important.

I will not stay with DaVita. I have already come to the realization that though I love my patients and my coworkers, I do not love my job nor the company. After achieving my first degree, my RN, I will begin exploring other employment options, ideal in the vein of holistic nursing. For the next two-ish years, however, I think I can manage three days a week at my present location. If things line up the way I hope they do I might be able to go down to working part-time and doing school full time.

Warren and I have fought. I told him he was an ass as a roommate. I told him I could rely on him to be unreliable. That in 13 months he’s paid full rent three times and none of those times were consecutive. I told him I didn’t want to live with him anymore and if he didn’t leave willingly I would find whatever legal course of action I could to have him removed, even if that meant having both of us evicted.

All of that came from after finding out he ignored my messages for three days.

I suppose backstory is needed…

Last Friday rent was coming due. It was also my payday and there for a “bill” day. I go through and pay things in order of their importance. Since rent is most important, I paid it first, which meant I had no money left to pay any of the others bills since Warren hadn’t made his contribution towards rent yet.

I messaged him to let him know rent was taken care of, but without his help, I was unable to pay any other bills such as power, internet, or any of my personal expenses.

I received silence.

For three days.

Nothing.

Nothing about, “Yes, I’ll pay rent. Just give me a few days.” No, “Thank you. I appreciate it.” Nothing to let me know that I would be able to pay all of my other responsibilities. Just empty nothingness.

On Monday I sent a message asking for Warren to pay rent so I could put gas in my car. I was low and without some sort of payment, I wouldn’t have had enough gas to make it through the week.

No reply.

Monday afternoon, when I got out of work, I sent a message asking if he was receiving my texts.

Silence.

I went to Big Bad’s house. I spent the evening with him. One were I told him about the situation and how I was going to address it when I got home. It was a good evening and I feel my time with him is one of the reasons I’m remaining as ok as I am.

When I got home I still had no replies to my messages but there was a deposit to my bank account for partial rent. I was ok with that. I was able to pay the bills that were due. It was enough to stay afloat and buy groceries.

That evening, while I was meal prepping, Warren came into the kitchen. I asked if he had been receiving my messages. He did a “so-so” motion with his hand saying “Eh. The first message rubbed me the wrong way so I just didn’t reply.”

I don’t remember what I said, but he went on to explain to me something something something… I honestly can’t tell you anything about what he said because the only thing I heard was the tone of his voice.

I’m sure other people have experienced it. That “tone” where you’re talking to a four-year-old who’s being unreasonable and so you have to talk very slowly and punctuate every single word since it’s the fifth time you’ve had to explain yourself to them and you’re just so exasperated that they’re being difficult…

I am NOT a four year old and I do NOT deserve to be talked down to after covering $500 of someone else’s rent. I DO deserve an explanation as to when I can expect my payment and I WILL NOT stand for my messages to be ignored because another person wants to be childish.

Thus my bridge burning napalm response of, “Go fuck yourself. Get out.”

Warren: So that’s how it’s going to be.

Me: GET. OUT.

He left, going back upstairs to his room, leaving me alone and furious. So furious I couldn’t even think beyond wanting to bash the windows of his car in with my combat swords from SCA.

I started receiving text messages from him. Messages I honestly didn’t read. I stated my feelings of “You’re an ass,” “I can’t rely on you,” and “If you’re not going to help I need you to leave so I can find someone who can.”

He knows where we stand now. He knows I’m ok with burning everything to the ground, including our relationship, if he doesn’t get his shit together because I’m done dealing with the stress having him in my life causes me.

This is my final stand. He made his payment for this week. I am waiting for December since that is when he gets his additional raise for his recent promotion. Words don’t matter anymore. Only action.

If he won’t take action then I will and I don’t care who goes down in the process. I don’t have to win, but I REFUSE to lose.

Big Bad and I are… doing well? I hesitate to write about this because even in my chest, sitting alone, I feel scared and vulnerable. Like it’s a frail, soft thing which could be injured at the slightest harshness. Something which hasn’t had time to become strong and confident. Like a fledgling.

The subject of children has come up. Twice, actually. Both times he asked me if I ever thought about having kids.

I answered with I’ve never had a partner that was loyal or one that I would want to have children with. I mentioned financial stability and being potentially polycystic and infertile. I mentioned how I never saw myself having the house with a white picket fence and 2.5 kids.

He seemed saddened by that. His response of “Awww” to my not having the picket fence seemed one of sorrow. Like he was sorry I felt that dream was out of my reach, or not meant for me.

I used to think about it, what my future would be like. I liked cooking dinner for my partners. I liked falling asleep next to them or watching shows with them. It’s one of the reasons I haven’t finished watching Burn Notice. I can’t bring myself to do it. There are things that I miss about living with a significant other. Things I figured I wouldn’t have in my life again.

There’s a part of me who is captivated by the idea of the 1950s housewife. I actually do want to do the laundry and dishes. I want to greet my love at the door with a kiss hello, or a sticky note attached to a nerf gun saying that the house is a war zone, loser has to take out the trash… you know, stupid, nerdy, romantic things. I want to have a kitchen table covered in puzzle pieces that we work on together, or at least talk to each other while I pick away at it.

There’s a part of me who wants it; the house with a white picket fence. That ideal life of perfection. There’s a part of me who wants kids and to pack their lunches and write love notes on their napkins. I want to help them with school projects and the science fair. I want to be there for their field trips. I want to help them grow their interests and find themselves. I want to be what my mom was to me for someone else.

I just never thought I would be able to experience it.

I mean… Big Bad has four daughters already. Why would he want more kids? And since I don’t want another partner, that means no kids for me by proxy, right?

I mentioned this to Kyle who’s response was, “He wants more kids. Why else would he ask you twice?”

My brain came up short on that one. Yeah, I thought it was odd that it seemed to come up often. But surely Big Bad didn’t want kids.

Kyle said to ask him.

So… I did…

We were texting each other good night and I asked if I could ask a personal question.

Big Bad said yes.

Me: Do you want more kids? I realized you’ve asked me that question but I never asked back.

Big Bad: Sometimes I do. They’re fun up to a certain age.

Since his oldest girls are teenagers I’m sure there is angst and tension at the moment.

Me: I think after a certain age they go back to being fun. It’s the middle years where they have to figure out themselves that sort of suck I think.

Of course, this is going solely on my own experience as a teenager and my relationship with my mom, so what do I know? But I do think things will ease over as his girls grow up and mature a bit.

Big Bad: Yeah. Maybe. Why? Are you ready to bear me the antichrist?

Me: I don’t know. I’ve never allowed myself to think of being a parent. I assumed you didn’t want more kids. I’m sorry for making assumptions rather than asking how you felt.

Big Bad: No need to apologize.

Me: Hypothetically, do you think I would be a good parent?

Big Bad: I think so. Certainly better than most.

Me: If I give birth to the antichrist for you I want 75% world domination for having to give up jiujitsu for 9 months. >.>

A girl has to have priorities…

Big Bad: Negative. I get 100% and you get to live in the post-apocalyptic future as my plaything.

Me: Do I get a slutty outfit?

Big Bad: Of course.

Me: And an army of penguins with lasers?

Big Bad: Several. Riding on sharks.

Me: … Then maybe…

So we haven’t agreed to have kids together or anything, but I do think our relationship has developed and deepened in ways I never thought it would. I don’t know how to explain the feeling, and I don’t know if it’s mutual or one-sided on my part because I haven’t voiced any of this to him.

It feels more committed. Nothing has changed, but in lew of the kid conversation, I feel like fidelity was reaffirmed on, and to, both sides. I feel like it’s another moment in time where we could have stood apart but instead, we stood together. We both admitted to things that we don’t share with others. We both allowed ourselves to be vulnerable. I’m not sure if we’re stronger for it, but I do think there is something positive about being vulnerable and realizing that it’s ok. You didn’t get hurt. In fact, you were safe the whole time. Not everyone is an asshole out to kick you while you’re down.

I spent Saturday evening and Sunday morning in Daytona with my younger brother. On the way back to Orlando I messaged Big Bad to let him know I made it back to town safely. I jokingly said I was about to pass his house.

Big Bad: Why don’t you stop by for a few. We’ll have coffee.

And so I spent nearly the entire day with Big Bad on Sunday. It was amazing. We started watching Stranger Things. Even though I just got done watching season two with Kyle I was completely content to curl up on the couch with Big Bad’s arms around me, the blanket covering us, and relax the day away.

It felt different than what it has been. For a little while, it had started to feel hollow. Even though we were together it didn’t feel like we were connected. It felt like it was just sex, which was still good, but I missed our times of wrestling, or working out, or cuddling, or our cups of coffee which seemed to have altered to me drinking by myself while he showered for work.

Recently, we had our date night to see Tho and all of our deep conversation and him saying he was proud of me. And then our Sunday afternoon of snuggles and shows. We still saw each other Monday evening which I am grateful for. Since I got out of work at 2 and he has taken this week off from work, I was able to go over to his house fairly early. We spent more time watching Stranger Things and talking.

I don’t know. It’s been feeling better and I do think the relationship is growing in ways that I didn’t expect it to. In ways, I hadn’t allowed myself to notice.

We both sleep well next to each other now. I remember in the beginning we didn’t. We were both worried about keeping the other awake by tossing and turning or snoring. But now, it’s different. I sleep deeper next to him. It’s like when I’m in my room alone I’m merely resting, while when I’m with him I actually sleep. I feel safe with him. Completely, physically and emotionally.

He said he knows he snores sometimes to which I replied yes, but that I liked it. It’s not loud or obnoxious. It’s just loud enough to be heard. Strong enough to be felt when my head is on his chest. I said it was reassuring. Comforting.

He said it seemed like I was having a bad dream last night and he woke me up. I don’t remember it. I remember feeling warm even though it’s winter and I normally always feel cold, no matter what I wear or how many blankets I have on my bed, or the fact that I live in Florida and most days still get into the 80s.

There’s a part of me, the soft, feminine part, that had given up on giggling, and being tickled, and goodbye kisses that make me smile. Of the warm fuzzy feelings that bubble up when you think of someone that spill into a silly uncontainable smile that makes you blush whenever someone points out that you’re smiling. Bastards. >.<;

And now, in the aftermath of basically two low key, relaxing days, I’m thinking that maybe it’s not all that impossible or crazy after all. Maybe all of this is ok and I should write off having a future with another person as “something not meant for me.”

I don’t think anything life changing will happen anytime soon. I want to become financially independent first. Or maybe stable would be a better word since I’m already independent and supporting two people, still. I’m sure being divorced and having four kids makes Big Bad hesitant to want to address the potential of living together or other batshit insane ideas like marriage.

Even just typing that on a blank page in a completely empty room makes my body tense with anxiety. So I know I definitely am not up to tackling those issues right now. I would much rather get out of the roommate situation I’m in first. I would like to make it through at least the RN associates. I want to feel like I am worthy as a partner and that I bring something to the table other than chaos because that’s what my life feels like right now. Chaos with brief moments of stability.

I think we’re both ok with not rushing things and I think maybe that’s why we’re as ok as we are. Regardless of what the future may or may not have in store for our relationship, I can say I am grateful he is in my life.

I like what we have. I feel he is honorable and I think I would actually be ok with eventually having his child.

There’s a lot on the horizon and not all of it in the distant future. Some of it is heavy and grief ladened. Some of it is good and potentially relieving. The main focus right now is breathing and surviving and resting.

For some reason it seems easier to that now; to survive. I’m looking forward to January. I’m actually kind of looking forward to the week of my birthday. Big Bad said he might take it off with me. I like the idea of us getting a pizza and watching stupid shows on my birthday. I like the idea of it not being special but of not being alone either.

I think there will be hard moments in the coming month but there will be good moments, too.

Daily Post 056: Meditation Needed

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Things have been ok. More ok than not.

My brother might be seeking therapy. He’s having a hard time and I can only do so much. I think it would be good for him to see a professional. Since he doesn’t have health insurance he’s having a hard time finding someone who doesn’t charge $120 an hour. Seriously… My brain can’t even…

I asked my therapist if she had any resources for the Daytona area. She mentioned a few and also offered to work with my brother if I was ok with it.

I am. I think she may be able to help Jon work through his self-worth issues and the feelings of abandonment and rejection he’s struggling with. I think there’s a lot of stuff still buried from mom’s death and his time in the Army. Maybe even from his divorce.

I need to send him my therapist’s contact information, but we’ve already talked on the phone and he knows that he has options now. I think that along helps him feel less lost.

Big Bad and I didn’t end up seeing each other. That sucked and is part of why I’m mostly flatlined today.

We were supposed to see each other Wednesday evening. He was feeling under the weather and I was exhausted from work. We decided to rain check the evening for Thursday instead.

I went to training Thursday. I stopped by the Salvation Army before going home to donate some odds and ends. I also found a swimsuit I liked so I can make use of the jacuzzi at the gym. I donated plasma later in the afternoon. I went to my sports bar afterward to eat and study for my certification. I went to the dojo that evening.

I didn’t do very well. And I guess I need to rephrase that. I did fantastic for already having trained once that day and donating plasma on top of all the other things I got done. I was fatigued before I even stepped on the mat.

We did a lot of cardio for the warm-up with rolls and cartwheels. I was paired with a newer guy I’ve never met who was also about half my size. It made performing the techniques hard. I didn’t want to be paired with someone I didn’t know. I really didn’t want to be learning a new technique. I would have preferred focusing on something I was already comfortable with.

Towards the end, I was paired with a purple belt. I explained why I was so tired. He said that was fine. We could spar for as long as I felt ok, but as soon I started feeling bad to let him know.

We did a few sort rounds alternating from starting in back mount. He was complimentary when I wormed my way out of his holds and answered my questions when I wasn’t sure about something.

I left before the class was over. I didn’t care if it looked bad to others. I haven’t been there much. I didn’t do much during the class. I didn’t stay for all of the sparring rounds.

Irrational Right Brain: Fuck you, Imaginary Judgemental Person. You have no idea what I have or have not done. You have no idea what my days are like or what I’m going through.

I messaged Big Bad once I was in my car. We had joked around earlier in the evening about playing video games but nothing had been definitively said about me coming over.

When I asked if he wanted company he said he was going to sleep soon and that maybe it would be better to hold off until Monday to see each other.

I’m proud that it didn’t feel like rejection or abandonment on my end. I do think that shows personal growth. My past hurts and insecurities have less sway and influence over my present emotions.

It still wasn’t a good feeling. I had been looking forward to seeing my companion more than once in a seven day period. I was looking forward to being cuddled with him and breathing in his scent. I was looking forward to not being alone.

It didn’t work out that way, though.

He sent a text message saying he missed me. I texted back saying I missed him, too.

Since I ended up with time to myself I went to the gym, put on my new swimsuit and alternated between the pool and jacuzzi. Cold helps with inflammation while heat helps promote blood flow and healing. I went back and forth a few times until I was ready to go home. My body felt better. I know I’ve been pushing it hard this week, especially since I did basically nothing last week. Compared to how I trained before I got this job I feel like I’ve been pretty inconsistent.

It’s weird. I know I’m at a higher level than what I was, but I also know I’m not where I want to be. I guess it’s like how I feel about my writing right now. I’m inconsistent. I let things get in the way. I’m tired of that.

I’ve been sort of sad since last night. Since not being able to fall asleep in Big Bad’s arms. It’s not the same type of sadness as when I hurt over mom. I haven’t thought too much about these feelings to understand them fully. I know what I feel is not rejection or abandonment, which is good. But there is something there that I need to figure out.

I had thought about not doing anything today. I thought about letting that sadness fuel a rest day. Stay home. Chillax. Be anti-social.

Irrational Right Brain: You’re not wallowing. You’re just indulging in not doing anything… Shhh… It’s ok…. Come to the dark side… we have cookies…

Instead, I ended up going to the gym for a HIIT class my trainer was running. Yes, my body was still sore. Fuck it. At least I could spend the rest of the day knowing I didn’t let sadness win.

Only one other person showed up to the class. It was nice to not have to deal with eight or more other people. It was just one other new person and she was pretty cool.

She said she had seen me on Tuesday doing my box jumps and that she was super impressed. I got to talk about how I’m training to be a fighter.

The class itself was pretty intense and I’m glad I went. Afterward, I came home and curled up on the couch for a while. Eventually, I was recovered enough to go upstairs and shower. I put away the clean clothes that were still in my laundry basket before filling it with all my dirty stuff and taking it downstairs.

I started a load of laundry and ran the dishwasher before heading out to my sports bar again. I’ve made it through another chapter in my certification book. I’m trying to make that a requirement on my “off” days. I need to get this certification out of the way, preferably before January so I can focus on school.

I paid rent. I had enough to cover all of it, but that only leaves me with $150 to my name with an electric bill, internect bill, car insurance payment, and phone bill to pay. I messaged Warren asking for his payment so I could pay all of my obligations. I haven’t gotten a reply from him yet. We actually haven’t spoken to each other since Kyle moved in. As long as he pays what he owes I don’t care. My opinion is still that he’s a man child and that our friendship will never be able to recover to what it once was.

My reward for studying and paying as many of the bills as I could was going through my email and catching up on the blogs I’m behind on. I’m also allowing myself the time to write.

There’s a randori session later today at the dojo. I know Jim will be there since he’s running it. I don’t know if I should go or not. I don’t feel like pushing myself. I think Jim would train with me if I asked him to. I haven’t made up my mind. If I don’t go I feel like it would be because I’m sad from not seeing Big Bad.

This is one of the few times I can make it to the dojo and yet I’m not going?

Maybe I do need to sit and meditate on a few things instead. Maybe doing a bit of emotional work would be better in the long run. My shoulder was giving me issues this morning, too. It was more of a sharp pain rather than a muscle pain. I had to modify a lot of the push-up work because it hurt to put weight on my left shoulder.

Blarg. I’ll figure it out.

For right now I’m going to go. I need to run to the store for laundry detergent, also a bottle of Fireball. At the moment drinking a little at the end of my nights is how I’m staying away from cigarettes.

I work tomorrow. Here’s hoping it goes smoothly.

Daily Post 034: Promise Kept

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I cried today.

It was another day that I completed everything on my to-do list.

I’ve pushed really hard the past two days. I don’t know if I’m proud of that or not. I know normally I would be. I still hurt and so it’s hard to feel past, see past, the pain.

Work started off well. I’m getting faster at setting up the machines. A lot of the machines were failing their alarm tests this morning. Two of the machines in my section had to be taken off the floor because we couldn’t get them working properly. It made everything so much more chaotic and slightly overwhelming. Add to that the fact that today I cannulated two patients (stabbed them with needles so their dialysis treatment could be initiated).

Hopefully, my jokes about stabbing people with needles aren’t offensive. I don’t mean for them to be.

But yeah, two machines are gone, and I’m having to perform an invasive procedure on people who know I’m new, oh, and by the way, my clinic trainer AND my company trainer are both there watching me to make sure if I fuck up it will be wonderfully recorded.

It was a lot today. I held it together. I did really well. And after it was over and I had clocked out and I was driving home I completely broke down because I couldn’t call mom and tell her about my day.

I couldn’t talk about how it was overwhelming and I survived. I couldn’t tell her how I was able to cannulate Chef on my first try even though my trainer still has issues with his access sometimes. I couldn’t get a hug. I couldn’t go home. I couldn’t have any of the reassurance that I’ve been used to for 27 years of my life.

I talked to her again. I told her I was sorry for not listening to her couponing stories as often as I should have and how I miss them. Even now I’m crying.

Instead of going home and giving in to the sadness I kept taking care of the chores I wanted to do. I was mostly on auto-pilot. Detached from the world around me, floating in it but not really interacting or experiencing it. I was ok with that.

I found out about my contact with the boxing gym. Because I put a hold on my account for the first three months I was going to the dojo my contract has been extended until October. Lame. I was hoping to end that in July since I’m not going there much. I could have used that money to go towards my training with MG.

I did talk to her about finances, though. Since I’m not doing classes at the dojo due to my work schedule we’re going to use my membership payment to go towards the personal training sessions. So it all works out nicely.

Verizon finally figured out my phone discount. Tomorrow I’m going to call and finally cancel Zane’s line. That will save me about $50 a month on my phone bill.

Mom’s pension finally closed out. I sent Jason the money I owed him from that. One obligation taken care of. Three more to go at least as far as payback goes.

I went to the dojo and did yoga today. I saw another one of my dojo buddies while I was there.

Both him and James commented on how I’ve lost weight. I know I have. I can still see new lines and contours in my form. I’ve stopped thinking about it. Maybe it’s apathy due to my grief. The fact that I’m losing weight doesn’t do anything to my emotional state. It’s a neutral fact. It is. It exists. I don’t know what else to write about it.

I know the two tattoos I’m going to be getting. I need Photoshop to make the files. Well.. want. Not need, but still. It would be easier than doing it by hand.

I don’t know what else to write. I’m tired. I slept deeply last night though I didn’t sleep long enough. I think I’m going to have the same issue tonight. It’s already almost 10 pm and I wake up at 3 am.

I feel like this is another moment in my life where I’m transforming, changing, morphing into the person I’m supposed to become. I don’t know why I feel like that. I don’t know why it feels like I’m supposed to feel this pain.

I guess it’s because this is me moving forward. I know this is something I need to do. It hurts. It sucks. I don’t want to do it. Each step forward feels like I’m moving further away from that moment in time. That moment where I was a younger more naive version of myself, protected by the safety of mom when she was still alive. A different me. I don’t want to use the term weaker because I was strong even then. Less battle hardened maybe. Less tried.

I wish I could hug my younger self. I wish my now self could have a hug, too. I wish when I cried I wasn’t alone and yet, even as I type that I know I would try to pull myself together if someone were around me.

I wish I wasn’t so complicated.

Daily Post 033: To My Keyboard

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Hello, dearest Keyboard.

Yes, you, Keyboard. This is for you.

You who I have typed on through this whole year. You who randomly double spaces every so often which most of the time I can ignore and correct while other times it provokes a level of irritation that can only be matched by lag during an MMO PVP match.

I realized I’ve never acknowledged you nor your contribution to keeping me going through this past year.

Every time I think about writing it’s you I think about sitting in front of. You who allows my fingertips to dance, playing the music in my soul, sometimes smooth and lulling, other times chaotic with the anguish and rage of my grief.

It’s you who had been consistent for me through all of my ups and downs. You who I constantly turn to. You who lets me bleed away my pain onto blank, white digital sheets of paper scrawled with red squiggle lines of doom because the computer loves to tell me that I don’t know how to spell.

I’ve missed you, Keyboard. I’ve missed having someone to talk to.

I miss mom.

I had left a voice message for John the other day. There were four parts to the message, all pertaining to different things. When he called me back he said, “What’s up?”

Me: Did you get a chance to listen to my message?

John: Yeah, I listened to about half of it. I got the gist of what you were saying so I deleted the rest of it.

He deleted the part where I told him I was feeling better from going to the urgent care clinic. He deleted the part where I said I had my first 12-hour shift at work and that I felt like I would be ok with the workload and my new career.

He deleted the part of the message that was about me.

We finished the conversation about his resume. We made plans for the weekend. I didn’t mention anything about the deleted sections. He didn’t ask how I was doing.

When we got off the phone my first thought was, “Mom wouldn’t have deleted my message.”

My next thought was, “John’s not mom.”

I’ve hurt since then, Keyboard.

It’s true. Mom would have listened to any message I sent her no matter how long or unimportant. She would have listened to every word.

I feel unimportant to my brother. I feel like this happens a lot with him. I keep allowing his actions to cut me deeply. I keep thinking that we’ll be able to find mom in each other but we don’t. We can’t. Neither of us is mom, but we both miss her so much it’s almost unconscious on our parts.

Maybe the deletion of my message wouldn’t bother me so much if mom were still alive. I most likely wouldn’t have left him a message at all since I would have been calling mom to begin with.

I don’t know. It’s all “what ifs” and “maybe would have beens”.

This is the life I’m living, and in this life mom is dead and my younger brother is his own person. Maybe one day I’ll understand that wholly. Completely.

I’ve been sick for a while. Two weeks and counting, though I’m pretty much well at this point. I caught whatever my classmates were passing around. Last Sunday it got so bad that I was looking up the symptoms of pneumonia, vowing to myself that if I was still super sick in the morning that I would go to an urgent care clinic.

I was still sick Monday morning, but I was better than I had been the night before, so I didn’t go get looked at. It was only on Wednesday when I was leaving work that I changed my mind. My right ear started hurting as if a nail were trying to drive itself into my skull.

John came down and took me to a clinic to get looked at, which ended up being a good thing. I had ear infections in both ears and pink eye in my left eye. The doctor said most likely what happened was I got an extremely severe sinus infection which ended up spreading to everything else.

The terms “eww” and “gross” come to mind.

It was extremely not cool. I had eye drops for four days, and I’m still taking my 10 days worth of pills for the ear infections. I was given a doctor’s note excusing me from work for two days, which I was luckily able to make up on Saturday. That’s how I was able to get a 12-hour shift in even though I’m still technically in training for another four weeks.

For the most part, I’m better. My sinuses aren’t draining nearly as much. The pressure in my ears is mostly gone. The cough which hurt so bad I was in tears is gone.

I felt well enough, and non-contagious enough, to go to the dojo for personal training today. MG pushed me pretty hard, though not has hard as she said she wanted to. My lungs were burning nearly as much as my legs by the time we were done with the sled work. I know tomorrow will be a yoga day to stretch everything out and get rid of acid build up.

Aside from missing mom and being sick, I’ve had to contend with more emotional ickiness in regards to the apartment. Since I was sick nothing got cleaned, and of course, once I was done being sick Warren got sick, so even if he were the type of person to care about cleanliness it would have been dickish of me to rant and demand that he help out.

It still sucks, though.

In my self-absorbed moments of sadness, I think about how it’s not fair. I was sick and still had to do the dishes. Why does he get to not do them while he’s sick? Shouldn’t it be fair? Equal? Couldn’t I have been cared for, too?

It doesn’t help with the feelings of worthlessness and meaninglessness I’m already feeling due to the deleted message.

When will I matter to the people who are supposed to be closest to me?

I have new coworkers, online friends, distant family, and distant friends who all think I’m an amazing person. They think I should be treated well and loved and cared for the way I care for others.

And even the people who hurt me think these things. So why do I hurt? Why am I hurt?

Why do I still not have rent money? Why do I still have to be the only one figuring out how to make financial ends meet? Why do I not warrant the respect to be told that a payment won’t be made at all, not even the partial of the partial I was getting before?

It sucks. And for the last two days, I’ve come home and curled up in bed under my covers and have allowed that pain to be almost all consuming. I’ve tried to understand why, and today I’m no closer than I was yesterday to an answer.

I don’t know why.

Today was different, though. Today I went to my clinic and I worked. I worked hard. I focused on finding my routine and flow and needing less guidance than I have on previous days. I still made mistakes here and there, but I can tell I’m getting better and my trainer constantly praises me for how well I’m doing.

I saved three people today.

Maybe that makes it sound more glorious than it really is, but it’s true. I initiated three dialysis treatments today and terminated them once the treatment was over. That’s three people who can live slightly longer, slightly better because I was there to help them.

It’s a good feeling. It makes it feel worth it. And right now I need something to be worth it.

I can see myself getting wrapped up in work once I’m allowed to work overtime. Maybe that will be good. Maybe that will be my form of self-medication for when I hurt, which might be bad. I already have a preference for being at work rather than home because home is stressful and there’s nothing I can do to change it.

Warren has a new job which starts on the 11th, but that doesn’t fix anything right now. And even on the 11th, nothing is going to be fixed. We’ll have to wait two weeks at least for his first paycheck, maybe 4 if his new company holds the first paycheck.

Things are still going to be painful for a while. They’re still going to be hard and there’s nothing to do other than to breath and wait and not lash out in my pain and frustration and claustrophobic confinement of being trapped in an environment I can’t change.

I had a dream last night where I yelled at Warren. He was upset that I was yelling, but nothing else I had done worked. Being nice didn’t do anything so I was yelling because that’s my way of breaking down. That’s when the frustration wins and rational through dies and the only thing that matters is letting out all of the hurt and injustice that I diplomatically tried to convey.

That’s part of why I was so tired this morning. I was fighting all night in my dreams.

Work was good, though. And the dojo was good. I got to see James for a few minutes after my session with MG. He said he hasn’t been able to make it to the dojo much because of a new job, too. We chatted for a bit, but all too soon we both had to leave. I hope to see him more in the future. I miss having him as a sparring partner.

When I came home I decided to clean. Not just clean, but hardcore clean. And so far I have. My room and bathroom have been bleached and vacuumed. My sheets are being washed. The stairs and floors are swept and mopped. The living room is vacuumed. I have a shopping list that I will take care of shortly. All of the trash has been taken out, including the bag that sat by the trash can for three days.

Part of me, the small bit of sadness still in my chest, knows that this, my cleaning, won’t matter. Dog fur will pile up again, the trash will build up from someone other than myself, and I will still have to take care of dishes that are not my own.

The order I have returned to my world will be eroded away day by day, action by action, and the thought of that makes me want to cry. I’ll still come home and not have my solitude because Warren’s waking up earlier in the afternoon.

I don’t know what else to say or write about in that regard. It is pointless. Hopeless. Meaningless. But in this moment, in my small bubble of a room with my music playing as I type to you, I want to take comfort in giving myself the illusion of control.

I can’t fix anything, everything, but I can clean my notebooks. I can put my clothes away. I can sleep in clean sheets. I can bleach the hair dye off of my bathroom counters. And for a few hours, the kitchen can be spotless and the floors free of gross Godzilla bunnies of dog fur.

I still need to go through and pay my bills since that’s another thing I haven’t done.

I’m trying to catch up on life, Keyboard. I’m trying to be an adult and to keep going even though I really don’t want to. I feel alone right now.

I saw Big Bad the other night, but even that isn’t enough to make me ok. We spent three hours together. Three wonderful hours. He held me in his arms and I was able to sleep with my head against his chest for a little bit. But because I had to wake up so early for work we decided it would be best for me to sleep at my own home. We had a cup of tea together before I left. I couldn’t fall back asleep, though.

Having been surrounded by warmth only to return to emptiness added to the feelings I’ve been struggling with. Big Bad has his kids this weekend. I don’t think we’ll get to spend any sort of extended time with each other for a while. My blacksmith and I most likely won’t see each other for a while longer, either.

I’m having a hard time finding a purpose, a reason, to keep doing all of this other than because I promised mom I would. I hate that there’s a part of me who doesn’t want to keep my promise. I want to give up. I want to let everything fall down around me and to say it’s too hard that I quit. I have nothing left to give.

Promises are important to me, though. I want to keep the ones I make and I promised mom I would keep going, so I have to keep going.

I started listening to The Subtle Art of Not Giving a Fuck about a month ago. One of the things mentioned in the book is how blame and responsibility are two different things.

I’m not to blame for Warren not paying rent. I’m not to blame for my brother deleting my message. And I’m not to blame for my mom’s death.

I am responsible for how I choose to act in regards to all of those situations, though.

Right now I would rather not feel. I would rather tackle Life like I did the last few reps of sled work that I did at the dojo today. I don’t want to think. I want to go on auto-pilot and push through this section because this section sucks. It’s hard. It hurts. I want to quit, but I’m not going to because I can’t quit.

I want to survive. I want to make it to the end. I don’t want to give up. I don’t want Life to win and break me because fuck you, Life. You don’t deserve to win. I won’t let you win.

I want to hold on because the end is worth it. When I’m finally able to rest even if my legs and arms and lungs are at the point of failure, it’s worth it. Maybe it’s more worth it because I push to my breaking point and then past it because, fuck you, Breaking Point. You’re not the boss of me.

In the end, the blessed end, the relief is so much more intense, so much sweeter, so much more gratifying, when you’re clinging desperately, reaching into the very core of yourself to make it the last 10 feet.

I just wish the people making this so much harder weren’t people I’m supposed to love and care about. I wish it wasn’t my heart chakra I’m having to close off and ignore. I wish it didn’t feel like bleeding out.

Thank you for being here for me, Keyboard. Thank you for not being upset for all the times I thought about replacing you because of your finicky spacebar tendencies. Thank you for letting write and complain and whine and bitch and cry. Thank you for not judging me or telling me to grow up and to stop being petty. Thank you for helping me figure out my life.

Thank you for being the best replacement for my mom that I didn’t know I had.

I know it’s so stupid. I know you’re just a keyboard, but I want to make you a promise. I want to promise that I’ll finish my chores today because I need to promise someone, something, so I actually do it. I want to make this promise to you because you’ve been here for me. Because you matter.

I promise I’ll be ok. I promise that I’ll make it through this. I promise that I’ll write tomorrow. I promise I won’t think about replacing you because of your annoying spacebar anymore.

Thank you for being here for me.