Daily Post 042: 16 Hour Days = 8 miles

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Monday was my second day on my own at work. My second 16-hour shift.

It was the first day that I remembered to wear my Fitbit with me to work. Apparently, I walked eight miles that day.

It was the second time that my teammates were amazing and had a little pow-wow with me to help boost my confidence.

Monday was the first day where I forgot the clamp the saline lines, not once, but twice, which resulted in a major headache for my trainer who had to help fix my mess up. Monday was the first time where not one, but two, of my patients, wanted to pause their treatment to use the restroom. It was the first time I got done taping someone’s access up and wished them a good day only for them to come back two minutes later, their gauze soaked in blood because they bled through.

It was the second time that I used organizing the stock room as my destresser from it all. It was my first heart to heart with one of the RNs who’s become way more friendly to me now for some reason. It was my first time interacting with Mr. C who said I did a good job taping him up.

It wasn’t a bad day. I was joking with my boss earlier, just after my first break, saying that I hadn’t killed anyone yet, I hadn’t broken down into tears, and I hadn’t quit, so, all in all, it was a good day so far.

He laughed, and I laughed with him even though we both knew how serious I was about each of those statements. Since he started as a PCT he knows exactly what I’m going through and it’s a nice feeling to know that he legitimately understands the whole, “It’s not a bad day but I’m totally going to break down into tears once I get out to my car” feelings.

Part of the routine at the clinic is each team member gets a specific chore for the day. My chore on Monday was making CVC kits. It’s sort of like making the needle packs.

Two packs of 2×2 gauze, two packs of alcohol, two tempadots, one piece of 4×4 gauze, paper tape, plastic tape, one syringe, one iodine pack.

Making needle packs is an extremely structured and repetitive task. It one of the moments in the day where I get to breathe and take a step back. A moment of decompression. Just like mixing the bleach water. I get to measure everything out. No higher level thinking. No inserting needles into arms or thighs. No human interaction for those six minutes. There’s only running water, measured bleach, writing initials, date, and time onto a piece of plastic tape to go on the container.

Monday was such a crazy busy day with me trying to keep up with my patients that I didn’t have time to do the CVC kits. I stayed after I clocked out to do them, holding up in the stock room and listening to the same ambient techno song on my phone while I did five packs at a time.

Two of those, one of that, three of these.

Counting. Repetition. No beeping alarms. No “next obligation”. No “I hope I’m doing this right and don’t mess up.”

My brother called me during my CVC making. There’s a former guard instructor who lives really close to him. She helped Jon get a job working with a high school marching band this past summer. She’s sort of become Jon’s adoptive mom. I’m not as close to her, but she’s an extremely nice person and I’m glad Jon has her in his life.

She was taken to the ER for a kidney stone. I can relate all too well to that situation.

Jon said he needed someone to talk to because it brought up a lot of emotions for him. Seeing her with IVs in her arm, just like mom had. Being there when she was discharged, an action we never got to experience with mom.

I had silent tears running down my cheeks as I continued to count out alcohol packs and tempadots. I know what it was like for me to be in the ER on my own. I haven’t seen any of my loved ones in the hospital yet. I’m sure it will bring up powerful emotions when I do have that experience, but I still ached for my brother and myself over our loss of mom. It still hurts remembering what it was like to see her in the ICU, what it was like to sleep in the hospital every night for two weeks. To stand in front of the drink mix aisle at Target and to feel like an awful daughter because I didn’t know what flavor mom would want. To know that mom never got to be discharged.

It brought up a lot on an already overwhelming day and I didn’t even bother to wipe the tears away as the rolled down my cheeks while I listened to him and shared in his pain.

I’m glad my brother called me and I’m glad we have each other to understand the emotions we can’t share with anyone else.

When I finally left work it was 8:30 pm.

I drove home. I talked to one of my friends from California while I did it. He made me laugh which kept the tears in check. It helped remind me that the day hadn’t been bad, just overwhelming and the way to fight overwhelm is to let go of the tension and breathe.

I took a long, hot, relaxing shower when I got home, washing away the day. Work will stay at work, and I think showering will be one of the actions I use to solidify that for myself.

I then went out to dinner with Warren since it was his birthday. We talked about finances. We talked about the Internet issue. We talked about him having a friend over on Wednesday (tonight). We talked about a lot of stuff. It was good to be out even though I was exhausted. I think it helped him feel cared for that even if it was a small outing that we at least did something for his birthday. It didn’t go unnoticed.

When we got back home I went to sleep almost immediately.

I slept almost all day Tuesday. At first, I thought about getting up and doing something with the day. At 7:30 am I went downstairs to make coffee but only made it to the futon. I laid back down for a few hours before finding enough energy to go back upstairs to my room. No coffee. No breakfast. In fact, I didn’t eat anything until 6 pm that evening and the only reason I did was because Warren agreed to pick up a pizza for me.

By 7 pm I was feeling a bit better energy wise. I stayed up and played Torchlight until about midnight before going back to sleep.

I woke up at 3, 5, and 7:30.

I’ve felt better today but still tired. It’s the type of tired that feels like it will be fixed with a good night’s sleep, so I think tomorrow will be ok.

I work tomorrow. It’s a “short” day. Only two shifts of patients rather than three. If I close tomorrow then I’ll be out around 4:30 pm. Friday is a day off, then Saturday is another “short” day. I’m hoping the new schedule is out so I can know what I’ll be working for the next six weeks.

I’m glad with the way the schedule worked out this week. I enjoy closing. I enjoy the calm and being able to stock and clean and not worrying about having the pod set up for the next wave of people. 16 hour days are brutal. Maybe I’ll get better with them as I improve my workflow and things become less overwhelming. Right now it feels like a lot and I needed these past two days to recover. Just like I needed Saturday and Sunday to recover from this past Friday.

I saw my blacksmith Saturday night. It was supposed to be Friday night but he was in a car accident.

I knew something was wrong that evening as I was leaving work. We had been texting earlier in the day. When I was leaving I sent a message to let him know I was on my way home. After thirty minutes I still didn’t have a reply. I knew that was odd. After an hour and thirty, I knew something had happened and our evening most likely was going to be postponed. At 11 pm I sent a message saying I hoped he was ok. At 3 am I still hadn’t received a response.

It wasn’t until the morning that I got a message saying he was being released from the hospital. No one was seriously injured. His shoulder and chest were sore but that was it. A 17-year-old was texting on her phone and pulled out too soon, smashing into the passenger wheel of his car.

I’m glad he’s ok. I’m glad we saw each other Saturday night. It was another session where I feel like my soul was melted into liquid iron and reshaped. Insecurities that I’ve had for years seem to have vanished over the course of a single night. Even with the weight of work I can feel a difference in myself. The breaks and cracks and chipped pieces where past experiences have hurt me have been undone through this one interaction and I really don’t know why or how.

I feel accepted with both my blacksmith and Big Bad. I feel a level of peace with both of them. Like it’s ok to be me, pure me, vulnerable me. No walls keeping people out and protecting hidden, secret hurts me.

I like how they both make me a better person. How they want me to reach the goals I set for myself. How they’re supportive and inquire about what I’m doing. How they help me through the hard times and share in the good times. I’m grateful for both of them and this is another instance of where I realize just how rare a dynamic like this must really be.

I still feel the hurt of mom being gone, but excluding that wound, I feel more whole than I have since I can remember. It’s another foreign feeling where I’m still me but it’s a different version of myself that I’m not used to. There should be pain in certain areas of my soul and there isn’t. In a way, it’s disorienting and yet relieving.

It’s something I am consciously aware of, so I suppose I’ll meditate on it and form other thoughts and will write about it more in the future. For now, it’s enough to say that I continue to grow and change and develop into the person I’m supposed to be.

Today has been a more productive day than yesterday, though really it feels like any day would have been “more productive” than yesterday.

I returned my fourth pair of shoes today. I actually really liked the ones I had. The only bad thing was they were a 9.5. The store I had been at previously only had half sizes in stock, so it was either a 9.5, which was a little too big, or an 8.5, which was a little too small.

I decided to try out the 9.5, but nope, too big. The shoes almost slipped off my feet while I was walking around the clinic. Everything else was amazing though. I loved the cushion and the slip resistant bottoms. The style was what I was looking for, too.

So today I went to a different store to return them and see if they had the elusive size 9 I wanted. They did, so hopefully, that mission can be labeled as a 100% success. We’ll know tomorrow when I try out the new pair. I have high hopes.

I did grocery shopping after that. This week is almost over and with still being low energy like I am I don’t really have it in me to do a bunch of cooking. I got mostly frozen stuff that requires baking in the oven. Not the healthiest of meal planning weeks I know, but it’s better than eating fast food every day from having nothing prepared. I’m going to try to be a bit better planned for the coming week.

I also got my car looked at today. One of the things my blacksmith and I do is go out to Waffle House for breakfast before he leaves. As we were driving there he mentioned how it felt like I should get my brakes looked at. Since I’m not a car person I tend to default to other people’s judgments on things like that.

My rotors were fine but the pads did need to be replaced, along with my brake fluid and my oil. It wasn’t supposed to have taken very long, but when one of the mechanics when to pick up the brake pads the store didn’t have them, so we had to wait for them to be delivered from somewhere else… it was sort of a cluster fuck on their end and I ended up waiting about four hours to get my car back.

Wasn’t really how I wanted to spend my day to be honest…

I got a half price oil change out of it, along with a card for a second half priced oil change. Would have rather had my car back two hours earlier, but at least they acknowledged the fact that it was sort of BS to keep me waiting as long as I was.

I’m glad the car got taken care of. The struts need to be replaced soon, but since that will be about $1k I’m going to hold off on that for a bit.

Oh… I bought more of the Shefit bras as well since they’re working out so nice. Three isn’t enough to get me through the work days as well as working out.

Aside from cooking food and doing laundry, there’s not a whole lot else about today to write about.

Warren is going to have his date night. I’m going to go to sleep, and then it will be tomorrow.

So with that I guess I’m going to go and hopefully tomorrow is less overwhelming than what Monday was.

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Daily Post 036: The Feeling of Suffocating

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Hey Keyboard,

It helps to think I’m writing to someone right now. I guess it’s another moment where I need it to be you.

I had all of these things I wanted to tell you, and now that I’m here I can’t think of anything. I guess it’s because today has been such a full and long day so now I’m tired. And in my tired state, I know in the grand scheme of the Universe my days and struggles are trivial so there’s the slightly self-deprecating thought of, “why bother to write at all?”

I went to the dojo today. It’s the first time in I can’t remember how long that I got to spar. I got to wear my gi. I got to wear my belt with my one stripe on it. I got to see some of my buddies. Not a whole lot of them since it was a Saturday class, but a few.

I went to kickboxing yesterday. I got out of work early enough to go. I wanted to go. It was a good feeling to have motivation like that. I pushed pretty hard. The trainer was one of the guys I like.

It was pretty cute. He came up to me and said, “There she is! The girl with beautiful kicks!” It made me genuinely smile and feel warm. Acknowledged. I do exist. Others notice.

Since it was a small class he helped me with technique and pushed me more than a majority of the other people since he knows I’m at a different level.

That’s something I’ve had going through my mind for most of the day. One of the guys I sparred with at the dojo was a person I’ve never met. At the end of our match, he said, “You’re really strong.”

When I had first been thinking about my day I had thought I would stay for Muay Thia after jiujitsu. Danny was there, and Roman. It would have been a fun class, but the emotions of my grief had been pulled too close to the surface from sparring. I opted not to stay and went to my car and cried instead.

At the time all I could think about was how I hadn’t been strong enough to make my dad stay when he divorced my mom. I hadn’t been strong enough to keep Warren #2 from rapping me. I hadn’t been strong enough to save mom when she was hospitalized.

There are all of these moments where I wish I had been stronger, more able, more something. Strength doesn’t mean anything if you can’t protect the people you care about.

Yeah, I’m stronger than I was. I can lift things on my own that used to require help. I can run faster and farther. I can do all of these things and even though I know it’s an improvement it feels pointless and hollow. I’m strong but in the areas that matter I still feel weak and helpless.

I asked Warren #1 for a hug when I got home, but it didn’t help. I don’t think it ever will anymore. I think we’ve moved past that point. He’s caused me too much stress and heartache over the apartment and not paying rent for so long. I can feel a distance between us, one that I put there. I’m not sorry it’s there. Maybe that’s cold and bitchy of me. I think of him as an annoying brother type figure. We can get along, but he can be extremely frustrating and “not worth it” sometimes.

Tody has been a productive day. I’ve gone through three to-do lists and I’ve done all of the items that were listed on them.

I’ve been having a hard time sleeping all week. Last night was the first night where I slept deeply. It was a good feeling to wake up on my own rather than to an alarm at 3 am. I cooked breakfast for the first time in over a week. I had a homemade cup of coffee in my cup. I sat on my doorstep holding my cup in my hands as I  felt the day warm up around me. It was nice. It was perfect.

I started playing Torchlight 2 with my brothers today. It’s a fun game. I’m enjoying it. Warren and I had lunch together and went to an oriental market. I got caught up on all of the messages, emails, and such that I haven’t had a chance or energy to reply to. I got my calendar updated with my work, social, and training obligations.

I did a lot today and I’ve done a lot over the past week. Five days in a row at the clinic was hard, but they were good days. I’m continuing to get more comfortable with my team and the patients.

I finally got to see my blacksmith Thursday evening. He didn’t stay very long, but we got to talk and see each other. I feel like it was something I needed. I needed to see him, to feel his hand on my cheek. I needed to feel him say “I love you” against my lips.

I realized that lately, it has felt like I’ve been suffocating. I’m breathing, but it’s short shallow gasps. Emotional overwhelm feelings like drowning. Life overwhelm feels like suffocation. There isn’t enough time to recover from one thing before the next thing takes its place. I keep having to go and go and go and go without pause for reflection or rest.

Not being able to see my partners factors heavily into that feeling of suffocation. Maybe more than I realize or care to admit. Not sleeping well plays a huge role as well.

And at the moment, while I’m on the subject of sleep, it’s already 11:30 and I still have dye to rinse out of my hair, so I’m going to go.

Things are ok. I’m still hurt. I still haven’t meditated or worked through my sadness. I can see the positive things in my life, though

Daily Post 035: Kidney Stones VS Childbirth

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I’m not going to apologize for my life. I’m not going to apologize for not writing. I’m not going to apologize for spending money or for playing video games. I’m not going to apologize for being sick or frustrated or tired.

I still don’t feel much at the moment even though the depression and apathy I have been feeling for the past several weeks seem to be easing their grip.

Big Bad and I finally got to spend an evening together. I don’t know when we’ll be able to see each other again. Maybe not until the weekend after next. We enjoyed our time together we both slept well. In the morning, he went to the gym, letting me sleep in, though I did wake up when he text me to let me know he would be back. I replied with my own message to which he replied, “Go back to sleep :p ”

Our exchange made me smile as I snuggled deeper into the blankets and his scent. It made me feel like I belonged which was extremely nice after feeling so alone for so long. We finally were able to share coffee together again. We got to talk about the things going on in our lives which included my trip to the ER.

I had a kidney stone Friday morning. That sucked. Like, literally was the worst pain I have ever experienced in my life, level of suck which I feel is saying a lot for how hard I play with my partners as a masochist. I was in so much pain I threw up and couldn’t walk. Warren took me to the ER since of course this happened at 1 am and all of the urgent care clinics were closed. FML.

And to make it even better, on the way to the ER the pain faded. By the time we got checked in and I saw someone I was still dazed and fuzzy from the intensity of the pain, but I could walk again, and I could answer all of their questions though I was sort of slow on some of them.

They put an IV in my arm in case the pain came back I and needed medication. I had blood work drawn which included a pregnancy test. Good news. I’m not pregnant. Big Bad was also appreciative of that result. I had a CT scan, which that stands for computerized tomography. You learn something new every day, right? I also had an ultrasound and a few other tests run.

I had a CT scan, which that stands for computerized tomography. You learn something new every day, right? I also had an ultrasound and a few other tests run.

Everything was inconclusive.

The doctor, an extremely nice lady, said given my symptoms and description they believed it was a kidney stone that was too small to show up on the scan.

While I was waiting in between all of my poking and prodding I consulted the wise and mighty Google, asking it what the causes of kidney stones could be.

Basically, it’s one of those, “if you breathe you might get one” sort of things… dehydration could cause it, too much protein in your diet can cause it, being sick can cause it, genetics can cause it. Most adults will experience at least one kidney stone in their life. I’m totally ok with having this off of my to-do list because when I say it sucked and was the worst pain I have ever experienced, it’s not a joke or exaggeration. According to the Internet, kidney stones are worse than childbirth. There’s some food for thought.

I think what happened is the stone formed due to my sinus infection or as a result of the antibiotic I took to fend off the ear infections because of the sinus infection.

Whatever the cause, I’m seriously done with this being sick thing.

On an unrelated note… Big Bad and I said the L word to each other. Actually, we typed it to each other since we were exchanging emails but as introverts, we both count it as “saying” it. Maybe “admitting” would be a better word to use.

I don’t think it will ever be commonplace for us to say it to each other. Not for a while at least. I think we’re both still skittish about things like that due to our past experiences, but we’re both happy we’ve addressed it. I know, at least for myself, when my friend asked me how I felt about telling him I love him I replied with “vulnerable”. I’m pretty sure he’s in a similar boat.

Yes. We love each other. That doesn’t change anything or require anything more or less from either of us. We like how things are. I’m glad that if anything were to happen to me, or to him, that we’ve had the exchange we did. Neither one of us will leave having doubt about the other person’s feelings. That means a lot to me.

I don’t like thinking that I might die and not get a chance to say the things I want to say to the people I care about. It makes me feel like I’m not living my life the way I should be living it. Fully, completely, every day. When I hold back from saying something I’m assuming I’ll have tomorrow, which isn’t true. Nothing guarantees me more time so I want to say and do the things I want to while I can rather than later because there might not be a later.

I finally said what I’ve been holding onto for months. It’s relieving. I’m glad I was able to say it and that we’re still ok.

Work is going well. I was going through overwhelmed feelings, but that’s eased up a little bit. Since I had to miss work Friday due to the kidney stone I’m going to be at my clinic all week next week. No mind numbing power point lecture for me. Woohoo.

Hey, Universe… just for the record… I would have rather sat through the power point than experience pain worse than childbirth… You know… in case you were wondering…

In other news, I have a new gym membership. I know… I seem to be going through them like candy. I feel a need to write this out so I can straighten it out in my own mind.

Because of the work schedule I have now, I can’t make it to classes at the boxing club like I was, so even though I enjoy my membership and I love the instructors, it’s not getting used and won’t be renewed. I’m actually going to talk to them about ending the contract, which that will require more writing about later.

I wasn’t using the YouFit, and the only reason I had that one was because it was $10 a month with no contract and let me run inside while it was cold due to winter. There really wasn’t much else going for it which is why I canceled it as soon as it started warming up.

I still have the dojo membership and I will be keeping this regardless of my schedule. It sort of sucks right now though. I can’t really make it to the classes, not without totally fucking over my sleep schedule, which is why I’ve switched over to doing private lessons twice a week. I’m mostly focusing on conditioning and technique, which I’ve already noticed some pretty serious results, so I’m not complaining too much about the switch. I do need to acknowledge my ache from not being able to spar with my dojo family at the moment. So while, yes, technically I am there, I’m still missing a large part of what it means to be at the dojo. At least for me. It’s a temporary change, but it still aches.

I do miss going to the YMCA like I was when I worked at Full Sail. I stopped attending that because I lost the benefit through work, but mostly because they tore the building down to rebuild it. I would possibly entertain the idea of going back except with my new schedule, even if the building was done, which it won’t be until next year, I would have the same issue as the boxing club. I work too early to workout before work and the classes in the evening are too late for me to do them after work.

So that brings in this gym. 24 Hour Fitness. Warren is actually the one who told me about it since he just got a membership there.

They’re open 24 hours, which is instantly a plus. They have saunas and showers. Already sold.

In addition to having those three of my requirements, they have a nifty system with their studio room. They offer classes during certain hours, but on “off” hours there’s a TV. You’re able to search for different types of classes, combat body, yoga, step class, strength building, whatever. You can select that class and do it on your own by following the instructor on the TV. They’re also working on getting punching bags because that’s a huge request from the gym members, including myself.

There’s a facility within biking distance of my apartment, and walking distance from work, though I would most likely drive, and you get access to all facilities with your membership; no having to pay an extra fee or more expensive membership to get that perk.

I’ve gone to the gym since Wednesday. Thursday I ran for the first time in what feels like forever. I’ve shaved two minutes off my run time. I didn’t hurt during or after my run. I was breathing extremely well through it, too. I’ve had a quiet empty space to do yoga every time I’ve gone, and once I’m done I get to sit in the sauna and relax, doing my dragon thing and basking and in general not giving a fuck about anything going on in Life because Life can’t touch me while I’m surrounded by the heat and warmth. For those 15 minutes, Life doesn’t matter. My run time doesn’t matter. Work doesn’t matter. Rent doesn’t matter.

It’s my 15 minutes of silence and I’m glad I have it back. I think it’s helped.

I still ache in my chest from my grief. I can still feel it. A heaviness. A tenderness that I don’t want to touch or deal with. Sort of like when a cut is infected. It hurts so you don’t want to do anything with it, but until you scrub out the infection and clean the wound it’s not going to get better. The pain has to get worse before it gets better.

I think that’s where I’m at right now. I think I need to do some meditation or further writing to figure out why I’ve hurt so much recently.

I think there’s a lot of factors for it. Not seeing my blacksmith or Big Bad for so long led me to feel disconnected. Being so severely sick didn’t help anything. There’s still stress regarding the apartment. There’s stress from work. Until recently there was also the reduction of workout time, which for me feels like a punishment; like I’m having to give up a part of myself.

I talked to my brother Thursday afternoon as I was leaving work. I needed to talk to someone. I needed someone who would understand why I was sad and crying and I needed to know that I could cry and still be loved I guess. That I wasn’t weak or broken.

I told him that all of my coworkers constantly tell me that I’m doing well. Everyone is so encouraging and supportive. I told him that I appreciated their words and that they really do mean a lot to me, but that I still felt like a failure because I wanted to hear mom tell me those things. I wanted to know mom believed in me and supported me. I told him that I started trash talking myself in my head, saying that I would never get this and that I should quit, but that I stopped myself because I can’t do that to myself anymore. Mom isn’t here to counter the Evil Voice. I usually don’t let it get very far anyway, but I CAN’T let it erode my confidence away. Mom’s not here to clean up my scrapped knees anymore.

I remembered something on the way home after the conversation with my brother. It was a situation from a while ago. I had been packing up my stuff at the apartment I shared with Zane. At the moment I was working on taking down the cards my mom had sent me. I always kept them taped up around my corkboard so I was taking the tape off of them and putting them away in a box. These were my last words from my mom. I couldn’t get rid of them.

I wasn’t really reading them, but I was looking at them. There was one, a gray and white picture of a baby duck on a board looking down into a large bowl of water.

I picked up the card and pulled the tape off of it, just like I had all the others. When I set it down the card fell open and on the inside was the phrase, “I believe in you”.

I remember I bawled my eyes out as I sat on the floor. And I cried again in my car as I remembered that event because that day all I had wanted was to feel like my mom believed in me and that I was doing the right thing. She’s always believed in me. I have to remember that even though I can’t hear those words the same way anymore.

I know my mom is proud. I used to pass out at the sight of paper cuts and here I am doing dialysis. Go me. Fuck yeah, I’m a badass, and even though I know that about myself I still wish she were still physically here to see it and to say those things to me. And I guess that’s why everything hurts so much right now.

So many things have been happening and I still long for that physical connection. Her hug, her voice, her existence.

I’ve been doing well. This past month will be known as “The Dark Age of 2017” since I’ve survived the plague that’s tried to kill me eight million different ways.

Today is 14 months. One year and two months since her death.

Today has been a decent day. I’ve started playing World of Warcraft again with my younger brother. We spend most of the day running my character through dungeons. I cooked all of my food for the coming week. I even cleaned the apartment.

Internally I’m still heavy though. There wasn’t really happiness today. There hasn’t been for a while. There’s something more real and less fleeting than happiness instead. I don’t think it’s contentment or acceptance. I don’t know what it is, but it’s very flat, calm. It wasn’t a hard or heavy day and in my tired state of mind, I’m glad for that.

Tomorrow I wake up early to go to the gym before work. I work until 3 pm. Afterward, I have training at the dojo. Then I go home, shower, eat, and go to sleep. Maybe I’ll play on the computer for a little bit depending on how tired I am.

I haven’t felt like writing. I haven’t felt like doing much, but despite that, I’ve done a lot and I’ve been hanging in there. I may not be ok. I may not be doing ok. But I’m surviving, and I still want to survive. I want that to count towards something. Like a solid baseline maybe. It’s not positive or negative. Getting through everything I have been contending with goes into strengthing my foundation.

None of this has been as hard as the weeks leading up to or after mom’s death, but a lot of this shit HAS been hard and I still got it all taken care of.

That counts.

Daily Post 005: Lab Results and Morals

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Scarlet is doing well. The vet called me around 9 am yesterday morning to let me know the results. Aside from a UTI, she’s in good health. Her kidneys are functioning within proper limits. All her blood levels are normal. For being as old as she is apparently Scarlet is in exceptional health.

The vet prescribed an antibiotic for the UTI. I’ll have to administer the medication once a day for two weeks, but Scarlet does surprisingly well with things like medication and baths.

I was glad I didn’t have to go through the whole day not knowing what the results were. And I was glad it results were so positive. I can be more ok with her walking issues as long as I know she’s not suffering.

I went to the Saturday dance class, only, it wasn’t really a dance class. Since it’s the new year the schedule has changed a bit. New classes have been added, old ones have been moved or replaced, etc. Well, instead of a beginner dance class on Saturday there’s now a stretch class.

I decided to check it out to see if it would be something I would want to keep in my weekly schedule. It wasn’t bad, but it wasn’t really all that awesome either. It’s basically a yoga class, but I can do better, more focused flows on my own rather than having to use one of my dance tickets for the class. I didn’t really click with the instructor which is most likely another factor.

I guess in a way it’s a good thing. If I’m not going to the dance studio on Saturday that means I can do the jujitsu and Muay Thai class at the dojo instead. I’ll have to see how that plays out, but it’s a possibility. I could also run instead, and then do Muay Thai… or run, then jujitsu, then Muay Thai… so many possibilities. Oh! Or I could bike to the dojo since the classes are during the day rather than in the evening.

Anywho, after the mildly disappointing class, I had enough time to go to the vet to pick up the medication. From there it was off to the dojo.

Muay Thai conditioning was awesome. Paul was running the class instead of Jim. There were more people there than what I’m used to, but it wasn’t intimidating or overwhelming. It was actually pretty cool because Jim ended up being my partner. One of the drills we had to do was keeping our hands behind our backs while trying to tap the other person’s foot with our own foot. If you got tapped three times you had to do ten pushups.

Guess who didn’t have to do pushups? That’s right. This chick. I got Jim three times but he was only able to tap me once. Yay quick feet I guess. It was fun and playful. It reminded me of how Big Bad and I will be holding hands and then randomly one of us will start a match of thumb war. It basically was a game of “keep away”. I enjoyed it. : )

I was pretty tired by the time class was over, but I didn’t relent. I knew if I went home that I most likely wouldn’t go back out, which would be bad. Instead, I went straight to the grocery store to do the shopping.

I stuck to my tradition of getting a sushi tray with a coffee drink for lunch. My reward for being a diligent adult and braving the store full of people. Since it was such a nice day outside I sat in a shaded area on the walkway and ate my lunch. There was a light breeze which felt great since I was still sort of warm from the dojo.

After eating I drove home and put the groceries away. I didn’t have it in me afterward to do much else. Physically I was tired. I napped for a bit. I eventually gave Scarlet her medication. I finally put my clothes away, but really I didn’t do much for the rest of the day.

Later in the evening, I was poking around online. I’ve been looking at jobs more and more recently. I saw another tutoring position except this one is for computer programming. It’s only a part-time position, and it’s for programming languages which aren’t exactly my forte, but holy crap, the only way it could get better is if it was a full-time position.

I would need about a week, maybe less than, to brush up on the languages they would want me to tutor, but all of them I’ve been exposed to. I tweaked my cover letter and applied for the new position. I kept poking around, and that’s when things got sort of dicey.

I saw a posting for a Character Rigging position from Full Sail. Essentially it’s my old job.

I don’t know how I feel about it. And I guess I should go ahead and say that I applied for the job.

I don’t know if I want to go back. At the time when I first saw the post I reached out to my former supervisor, but he didn’t respond. I figured he was asleep, but a few other people were listed as online for the Facebook chat, so I sent them messages trying to get more information about the situation and job listing.

I made a new cover letter and sent my application in. And then I sat and stewed trying to figure out my emotions over the situation. I ended up messaging my blacksmith because my thoughts wouldn’t let me sleep.

As far as a job is concerned I would like a reliable full-time position here in Orlando, preferably utilizing the skill set I already have.

The Full Sail position would give me that.

I could most likely ask for more than I was making when I left and get it. I already have training on the systems so I could skip most of that. I already know the people who would be my co-workers. I’m confident in my ability to run labs because I did it for four years. I would be able to start biking to work again which is actually something I miss. I could stay in Orlando with my companions, friends, and still be near my younger brother. I could still go to the dojo. I might even be able to start working on my Digital Arts and Design degree again.

Theoretically, I would be making enough to live on my own, which is something I’m still hoping works out. I wouldn’t have to go to Californa and spend months waiting to come back to the life I want to live.

However, comma…

I said I would never go back to Full Sail.

So, yeah, there’s all these positive things… but what does it say about me or my word if I turn around and go back?

Part of me feels like it would be a failure on my part. Failing at what I don’t know, but I think I would be upset with myself for going back.

After talking to Clavan this morning the listing isn’t even really advertising the position they’re hoping to fill. It’s more of a “float” position where I would be helping out in the compositing and lighting classes. Neither of those areas are really areas I want to be in.

So even though there are all these positive things, I don’t think I would be happy. It wouldn’t really be my old job. It would be stuff I don’t really like in a place I don’t really want to be.

I haven’t ruled it out, but I think I would rather not accept it. I would need to have some serious conversation during the interview if I got one.

That leaves the tutoring position. It’s part-time for significantly less money. But part-time lets me still focus on me which I would like to do. I would need a roommate, but there’s no telling what could come from the position. Ideally, I would use it to eventually get an adjunct professor position, or maybe I could tutor other subjects and potentially get full-time pay which would be fine even though the wage is lower. I honestly don’t need all that much.

I feel like if I go back that I’m being weak. I feel like I would be saying it’s ok to treat me like crap when it isn’t. I left because I was treated like a cog rather than as a human. Is that really what I want to go back to?

No. Not really. Even though I love my co-workers and even though Clavan was the best supervisor I’ve ever had, and even though I have positive memories of working there, I don’t want to go back.

I said I wouldn’t, so why am I faulting?

Because paychecks are nice. Because if I’m honest with myself the money I have is running low and I need to have something lined up so I can keep supporting myself and not turn into the unemployed slacker mooching off of people I’m terrified of becoming.

I don’t regret how I have spent the money. I paid for mom’s apartment for five months because I didn’t know if I would be moving to Vegas or not. I helped people who needed help. I paid for my apartment for the whole year. I paid for the extended stays I lived at so I could have my own space while I figured out my life for six months. I took the CNA class. I took trips to see people I haven’t seen in years.

I feel like even though I most likely could have spent the money more responsibly given hindsight, that I’ve done pretty well, and being realistic about it now is good. It hasn’t run out, but compared to where it was, it’s low, and it’s finite, so I need to start looking at ways to get an income again.

Warren and I talked about it this afternoon. He’s going to be able to start paying rent in February which will help out significantly, and he’s going to start getting Amber to pay him back for the time she was unemployed.

This is another unknown, however, and so there’s a bit of stress with it. I know I could get a sales position or work in fast food, but after having a job where I was fulfilled I know I don’t want to do something like that. I wouldn’t be happy. I don’t like working with money. I don’t like selling things. I like helping. I like teaching. I want a job, but I don’t want to sell my soul to have a paycheck.

There’s still a bit of time to figure it out. I’m glad I’m looking for solutions now rather than waiting until the very last second.

Today was a low energy day. I wasn’t sad or anything, but having been awake for later than I wanted to be meant that I didn’t wake up until around 10 am. Super late when you’re used to waking up around 4 or 6 am. And I was still tired. And it was cloudy outside…

Arg…

I’m happy to report that even though it was a “meh” day that I’ve gotten everything on my to-do list done. I’ve cooked all the meals for the coming week. I washed my sheets and laundry. I’m back to the task of “put clothes away”… hopefully it doesn’t take me all week to do it this time. I’ve made the bed already so once I’m done having game time with my brothers I can crawl into bed and pass out.

I’ve vacuumed both the living room and my room. I’ve swept up the dog fur. I’ve swiftered the kitchen and hall tiles. I’ve cleaned out my car, not that it was all that bad. Mostly water bottles. I’ve gone through my email inbox and caught up on posts and such. I even ran back out to the store to pick up a few things I didn’t realize I was low on. Can’t make egg roll bowls without soy sauce…

Because I went out to the store I rewarded myself with a dessert cup from the bakery. It was a strawberry shortcake type thing. Most likely awful for me, but I’m ok with it. It tasted dericious, not that I ate it before having dinner or anything…

Carolina actually came up to me yesterday before the Muay Thai class started and whispered to me, “Girl, how much weight have you lost?”

I honestly don’t know, so I told her probably around 30 pounds since I was down 20 in November. I wonder if it’s more than that, though.

Oh. Yesterday was the first day of wearing my new pants to the dojo. They worked wonderfully.

Since tonight is a game night I’ve been thinking about getting a pizza. Since I’m thinking about it I’ll most likely do it. I did well today. I’ve been doing well. I don’t think it’s bad to have a slack night where I relax and enjoy some video gaming and grungy food. I’m not going to let my brain try to trick me into thinking otherwise.

My financial situation is still fine. I’m not a bad person for not having a job yet. I willingly left the workforce. I’m not going to start regretting my decision, and I’m not going to compromise on my morals for a paycheck.

That was something Warren mentioned while we were talking about the job. He asked something along the lines of, “Is sticking to your moral high ground worth not being able to support yourself?”

My reply was if I don’t stick to my morals than what’s the point of having them?

I may make things harder on myself then they need to be, but I think by accepting only what I know is beneficial for me that ultimately I’ll end up ok. Maybe even better than ok. My resolution is to be happy. That doesn’t mean it will be easy, and I’m ok with that.

Nothing worth having is ever easy.

Daily Post 000: Starting The New Year

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So it’s the new year. Hooray. 2016 died the horrible death it deserved.

That means with my tracking system for daily posts we’re back to the beginning. A new beginning.

I’m happy to report that I’m back to being mostly normal. No more irrational post-travel rage. I think a lot of that has to do with things easing back into normalcy.

Big Bad and I finally got to see each other. It was only for a few hours yesterday. He still isn’t feeling well with whatever respiratory infection is going around. It was an extremely pleasant visit, though.

We played some matches of Soul Calibur. He was actually doing practice rounds with his favorite character when I showed up. How unfair is that? Pretty sure we need to classify that as cheating since I can’t practice. I mean, seriously. That’s an unfair advantage and I’m sticking to my guns on that one. It’s totally not because I have a burning need to kick his ass in a virtual game while yelling, “Take that!” at him or anything…

Even with his unfair advantage I still managed to win my fair share of the matches. I think by the time we called it quits it was 6 to 10.

We cuddled for a while afterward. No jujitsu sparring since his lungs are still infected with the plague. It was nice simply being close to him. It was nice realizing that even after over two weeks of not seeing each other the focus wasn’t sex but rather companionship. We rested together, my head on his chest, his arm wrapped around me. It was warm and connecting. We talked a little bit about my trip, about his holiday, about his mom’s birthday.

Eventually, as he was petting my hair, we lapsed into our shared silence. I actually fell asleep for a little bit, which was fantastic because I had slept horribly the night before, but that meant  I ended up being late getting to dinner with Nicole. I felt rude rushing out the way I did and I sent text messages to Big Bad as soon as I was able to apologizing.

I’m not sure when he and I will be able to see each other again. Hopefully before the 11th since that’s when I leave to visit my dad.

My blacksmith also wants us to spend time together. Along with everyone else who thinks I died in the last two weeks of not being in Orlando.

There’s a handful of people I legitimately want to see, but I think I’m going to have to limit my social time. As an introvert, I can feel the pressure of “too much social” building up. I need some space and downtime, or at least social interaction with the people who recharge me. My blacksmith is definitely on that list.

There’s a pang in my heart because I would like to see Mother  Earth, Josh, and Sir. I don’t think it will happen, though. One I’m not allowed to reach out to. Another told me to never message her again. And the last… I don’t know. I’ve reached out but nothing is ever set. Holidays have a way of making things crazy. Maybe now that it’s over it will change.

I don’t really have a whole lot to write about as far as my days go. The dojo repones today so I have three hours of ass kicking scheduled. I have therapy at 3 pm, which I think will go well. The holiday season turned out surprising well and I’m glad for it.

I have chores I want to do, so I’ll most likely shower and head out to accomplish those.

I painted the walls in my bathroom New Years eve. At 10 pm I posted a picture on Facebook with the message, “Ugh… this paint is going to take all year to dry.”

Sometimes I amuse myself. XD

I’ve figured out my resolution for this year. That means I have to talk to Tre and prepare him for me not accepting the contract offer. I’m pretty sure he’s been pushing his supervisor to highly consider me, so there’s a small amount of guilt for potentially making him look bad by not following through. Not enough to change my mind or make me alter my decision.

If my goal is to be happy then I shouldn’t do things that go against my priority. Not accepting the job might make things harder in the long run, but I’ll figure it out as I go, the same as I have for the past nine months. I’ll make it work, one way or another.

So I guess that’s where I am with that.

I ran again on Sunday. Added a half mile to my distance. Added a minute to my time. That was sort of lame, but I’m trying to look at the positive of it. Half mile. Woo. Go me.

It’s been amazingly warm this past week and I’m grateful for that as well. Winter is always hard for me. I think I’m doing better this year, all things considered, because of the warmth. I’m still able to get up and do things and bask in the sunlight in shorts and a tank top. I’m still able to feel alive rather than like I’m hibernating.

I redyed my hair, too. The roots had grown so long you couldn’t see the purple anymore when my hair was pulled back, which is always. I’m back to normal now, though. At least as normal as one can be with purple hair. I’ll most likely have to redye it on Friday since the roots didn’t take the color as well as I wanted. That’s normal though for right after having it bleached. I guess there’s something about the process that makes it angry. Finicky hair is finicky.

I got my brows waxed while I was there. Small girly self-indulgence.

I’ve gone through my cloths again, picking out the stuff that’s too big since there’s stuff like that now. I’m getting ride of some other stuff as well, like the sandals I replaced. That’s getting donated today, and a few things are going back into storage so they’re out of the apartment.

I’m working on getting my environment set up the way I want it. Completely. Fully. I’m not burnt out on painting anymore so that’s going to get done. I’m not worried about not being here in a month, so I have no reason to hold back on my efforts.

I’m here. In Orlando. And I’m here to stay. At least for now.

And with that I’m off to actually do my to-do list rather than procrastinating all day like I did yesterday.

 

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