Daily Post 076: Re-Finding My Routines


I’m almost at the end of my second week at my new home clinic.

That means I’ve had almost two weeks to find my routines again. I can’t say that I’m back to them 100%, but I’m getting there.

I wake up in the mornings at 3 am on the days I work. That’s thirty minutes to an hour later than what I had to do in Orlando. An hour may not sound like a lot, but trust me, there’s a huge difference between 2 am and 3 am.

Depending on how the night went and how cold it is in the morning I may shower, or not. When it’s below freezing outside I’m more concerned about being warm rather than not having bed head. I’ve been able to enjoy cups of coffee again with an egg sandwich which I cook fresh instead of having to have eggs premade because that’s the only way I’ll get breakfast if I do.

I pack my lunch box with my premade lunch containers. I add a fruit or protein bar. I add a pudding, too, but I don’t always get around to eating it. I’m not heartbroken over that fact. It’s there if I want it and for whatever reason, that’s comforting.

By the time all those things are done, it’s about time for me to head to work so I’ll go back into the bedroom and let Ox know that I’m about to leave. I’ll change out of my sleep clothes into my scrubs. I have my own locker at work so I’ve started leaving my work shoes and googles there, which means I slip into my sandals, allowing myself to stay in “gearing up” mode during my thirty-minute drive to work.

Ox and I will have a cigarette together on the porch in the darkness of predawn. Lately, I’ve been saving my coffee for that shared moment together; another added layer of warmth to my morning along with our quiet conversations and hugs goodbye. And I realize there’s not much of a “lately” since I’ve only had two weeks to figure out my mornings, and only six of those days have been ones where I’ve actually worked…

Ahhhh data… how I wish I had more of you…

I’ve gotten comfortable with the drive to Beatrice. I’m sure I’ll get iffy with it again once winter comes back and I have to really start driving in the snow and ice, but for now, with the seasons changing, the worst I’ve had to worry about was one morning when it rained. Being from Florida, that didn’t bother all that much. It just sucked that the lines on the road were a little harder to see.

I’ve been getting to work 15 minutes early. I’ve opened the water room on my own a few times so I’m comfortable with adding that to my routine. I think after the next two days of training I’ll be confident in my ability to open the clinic on my own.

Yesterday I was able to talk to my new FA about some of the changes I would like to make. She was on board with them, which is super fantastic since all of the changes would make my life as a tech easier. I also got confirmation that my certification does entitle me to a raise and that I will be retro-paid for it. Everyone still thinks I’m doing well and that I’m a good fit for the clinic. I’ve meshed well with several of the patients. I had one of the say that they’ll keep me which made me smile.

Overall, my work days are settling into a routine that leaves me with enough energy to do things when I get home, or at least with the time I need to recharge for the next day. It’s a nice change from what I’ve been used to for the past year.

My “off” days don’t have as much of a routine, but I’m trying to find one for them.

Today was my first off day where I put real effort into figuring something out. I didn’t stay home all day. I didn’t sleep all day, though I did go back to sleep after Ox left for work.

I got up around 10:30. I made breakfast and had a cup of coffee. I sat on the porch and had another cigarette as I enjoyed the cool breeze and sunlight and quietness. I showered, hoping that would spark me into actually do stuff. I’ve noticed the days where I don’t shower in the morning seem to be harder.

I made a shopping list since I needed things for my lunches at work and for the enchiladas I was supposed to make for dinner.

There was a fitness place I wanted to check out so I called and made sure it was ok to come in for a free workout. I also packed the car with more things that needed to be donated.

It was a pretty light to do list, but I was ok with that. I’ve been having anxiety over getting back into the routine of working out. I know I’m not where I was at this time last year. That’s a hard pill to swallow and it’s easier to not acknowledge that fact rather than actually doing something about it. That doesn’t get me back to where I was, though.

I miss the dojo. I miss punching and kicking things. I wanted to try out 9 Round to see if it could help me find what I feel I’m missing.

It was a decent workout. Definitely the hardest 30 minutes I’ve done in a while, but it’s not really what I’m looking for. I don’t think it would be worth the money they want. I wouldn’t be happy or fulfilled with it. Maybe if it were cheaper… but even then, I would feel like there’s something lacking… It’s only part of what I want.

I’m glad I went. I’m glad I pushed as hard as I did. I coughed for most of the day afterward because I haven’t had to breathe that deep or hard in a while. My body is sore. I’m tired and I feel like I’ll sleep well tonight. I also know that I need to drink more water before going to sleep because I’m running warm still. Blarg…

It’s a good step forward, even if it’s not the route I’ll most likely end up going with.

There are a few other places I want to check out, but I think the dojo in Omaha is going to be the one where I find what I’m looking for.

After my workout, I drove to the Goodwill to donate the stuff in my car. I still had to use my GPS to get there, but after seeing the route on my phone I knew where to go because I recognized the streets. I’m getting better at navigating and I know eventually I’ll be able to do it without double checking myself with my phone.

After Goodwill, I went to the grocery store for the foodstuffs I needed. I treated myself to some cans of Bang, the energy drink one of my senseis turned me on to. I had to use my credit card for the groceries, which that payment is up to $300 now, but I’m ok with that.

I’ve survived March. I’ve paid everything that needed to be paid. I’m doing ok, and this next paycheck is where I start recovering, assuming nothing else hits the fan. I should be getting my tax return and the check from Full Sail soon. I should be reimbursed for my certification test, the registry fee, and retro-paid for my certification. I also should get my raise for my annual review at some point.

All of those things will help once they actually happen and I should be ok until they did actually happen since nothing ever happens in a reasonable time frame… I mean, NOW is a reasonable time frame, right?

After the grocery shopping, I headed home. I stopped by the Dollar General near home since I wasn’t able to find a pumas stone at the grocery store. I most likely overlooked it or something, but it was a new store and I was proud of myself for getting everything else on my list without asking for help so I didn’t mind stopping at a second store that was on the way home to see if I could find what I wanted.

While I was at the Dollar General I got shampoo and conditioner specifically for dyed hair since the stuff I’ve been using eats through the purple dye in my hair. I’m not one to be girly or anything, but I’m used to the dye lasting for a month at least, so when I’m two weeks in and it’s already faded looking I’m not really an ecstatic camper.

Once I checked out, I hopped across the street to the gas station and got gas for the car so I wouldn’t have to worry about that in the morning or after work. I’ve been getting pretty awesome gas mileage even though I’m having to drive a bit further for work. I have literally no stoplights on my way to the clinic. It’s a smooth thirty-ish minute drive of music and sometimes an annoying driver who leaves their brights on because they’re a dick, not that I have strong feelings about that or anything…

When I got home I cleaned up the kitchen and put the groceries away. I bought premade salads. I didn’t think I would have it in me to made a whole much of stuff from scratch but I still wanted to eat well. It was a bit on the expensive side, I mean, $10 for two salads is pretty up there when you can make six for that much if you just buy everything yourself, but if it helps me keep on keeping on then for this week I’m ok with it and we’ll see how next week goes.

I listened to music for most of the day which I also think helps. I’ve found a lot of new songs that I like. I made a bit more progress in organizing and cleaning the kitchen and I was able to make the enchilada dinner for everyone.

It turned out a spicer than everyone was expecting. I wasn’t a fan of the tortilla shells either, but there’s a lot of the meat filling left over, which I was a fan of, so I can have little nacho lunches.

I resisted the urge to get lunch while I was in town, waiting until I was home to make a ham sandwich. Go me. Not sure why that matters, but it does.

Overall it was a pretty low key day, but I think I’m guiding myself back to the path I want to be on. Doing an actual workout took a lot of… something… It didn’t leave me beat, but on a mental and emotional level it took more than staying home would have and I feel I need to let myself acknowledge that. I gave a lot today. I need to not let that go.

I work tomorrow and Saturday. Saturday is a short day though, so I should be done before 1 pm. Ox has said we can do more in the addition this weekend and it’s something I’m looking forward to if the weather isn’t super crummy.

I’m looking forward to going to work tomorrow and taking measurements of the shelving in different spots so I can figure out what size containers we can use to make things more organized and flow better.

There’s a lot of things I’m looking forward to. It’s a good feeling.

On that note, I was supposed to have my therapy conversation today, but that got rain checked. My therapist wasn’t feeling well, so we’re going to try to find a time next week to talk. I’m worried about her because there’s more to the story then I feel I’m allowed to say here. It’s not my story.

I also got a message from my blacksmith this morning. That leaves me feeling sort of defeated. He says I’ve grown distant…

All of the months I was in Orlando where we didn’t talk and things were fine. With him working double shifts and taking care of his granddaughter and being busy… All of the times he didn’t reply to my messages and things were fine.

I move out of state and we go two weeks and suddenly I’m the one who’s distant. It feels unfair. What am I supposed to do differently? In my head, nothing changed. But I guess it did and I don’t know where to go with that.

I had to be understanding and secure and breathe through the feelings of loneliness and accept what I had in regards to our relationship because of the limitations it had. But when the situation is reversed I’m distant and in some way not giving enough.

It… sucks, I guess. If it was supposed to be good enough for me then why isn’t it good enough the other way around?

I talk with Big Bad more, but that’s about the same as it was. Our text messages never really touch on the deeper topics that I need to feel truly connected. It feels like small talk most of the time which is… alienating I guess. There are a lot of people like that in my life right now.

Why is it I always save writing about the deep, dark stuff that I need to meditate on until the end of my day where I need to be unwinding and going to sleep? >.<

Damn you, Brain. Damn you.

I’ll figure it all out eventually. I know I will. Tomorrow starts the two weeks of mom’s hospital stay though, so I’m not all that worried about hand-holding others through their hard times. I’m financially survived my move. Now I need to emotionally survive reliving my worst fear.

I’ll be ok. I know I will be. That doesn’t mean it will be pretty or that it won’t suck.


Daily Post 074: Another First Day


I’m back home after my first day at the Beatrice clinic.

The quiet night of studying I had originally planned has changed. And with being tired already this post is most likely going to be a bit all over the place.

The morning started off well. I didn’t get as much sleep as I most likely should have but I was ok with that fact. I got enough to sleep to make it through the day and I enjoyed the time I had with Ox last night. With the sadness I’ve been contending with and my period, and his head cold… there hasn’t been much in the way of sexual interaction.

It’s not a bad thing. It’s not like I think our relationship is ruined or in dire straights or anything like that. It’s just how things have been playing out for us recently, and I’m very aware that “recently” doesn’t leave much in the way of data since we’re still under the two-month mark.

And actually… I paused there for a second to check my calendar. I got home, here, in Nebraska, on February 13th / 14th. So really… today/tomorrow is the one month mark.

I’ve only been here one month…

No wonder things still feel new and mildly overwhelming most days. Putting my timeline into perspective helps me feel less like I’m overreacting. I feel less bad about being tired and sad and… the tangled mass of everything that I am which I still haven’t worked through and which I won’t be able to work through tonight.

Today was my first day of feeling like I was going to work. I know I’ve been at the Capital City clinic for two weeks now, but I didn’t think of that as “my” clinic. I knew it was a temporary thing and it wasn’t where I wanted to be. The team is nice, I’ve already bonded with some of the patients there, but for those two weeks it was holding out in the hopes that I would like “my” clinic more.

And I do already. I enjoy the drive more. I have literally no stop lights on my way to work. It’s mildly annoying driving that early when people leave their brights on, but the drive home was amazing. The sun was out. I was out of work early enough to enjoy it. The only thing that was missing was my sunglasses, but I’ll make sure to not make that mistake again.

I felt a little out of my element for most of the day because I was.

Me: Do you want me to set up that machine?

Me: Do you want me to make needle packs?

Me: Where are the extra cloths?

Me: Where are the band-aids?

Me: What do I do after this step on the machine?

Me: How do you adjust the parameters?”

Once I’ve been there for a few days and get a feel for the new machines and interface I know I’ll be fine. Once I get a flow for how to open the clinic on my own I know I’ll feel better and more confident in myself, but right now I’m back to feeling mildly incompetent. I’m also working with a totally new patient population again so I have the anxiety of, “Oh god. What if I miss the stick and that’s their first impression of me?”

The treatment initiations I did went smoothly, if a bit slow. I thanked each patient for their patience with me, and all of them said it wasn’t a problem. I didn’t get bad vibes from anyone and I do think we’ll all warm up to each other in the coming weeks. The more I’m there the more we’ll get to know each other.

And I have to pause again for dinner…. brb…

*  30 minutes later *

So yeah… I was writing about work…

I’m not as big of a fan of the trainer I was with this morning. She’s nice enough, but I feel I get along better with the other two people I’ve been spending time with. All things considered, it wasn’t bad. And I guess the biggest take away is that I know I’ll get better, It’s just going to take time. By the end of the week, I’ll feel more at home in the clinic. I’ll have a routine down for the drive there and back. I’ll have a better idea of how to close the clinic and what my “normal” go home times will be.

I do like the nurse I’ll be working with. That’s a plus. Like… a huge plus. I also love the person who will soon be my FA. I spent a fair amount of time working with her on the floor last week at Capital City. I think her and I both mesh really well and I’m looking forward to being able to work with her to make our clinic better because I do feel there are a few things that can help make things flow smoother.

Anywho, I didn’t go to the gym today. Mainly because I forgot my gym shoes at home. I forgot to put them in my bookbag when I switched everything over from my gym bag. I’m not going to need my gloves and shinguards for a while, which in a way makes me sad. I miss sparing. I miss my dojo. I miss being able to hit and kick things and pushing myself hard. I miss jumping boxes and flipping tires like a bad ass. I also know I’m not there at this moment and that, for now, all I really need is a backpack, so that’s what I’m going with.

Ox is going to have his kids this coming week since they’re on spring break. They were supposed to be here Tuesday night, tomorrow, which left me tonight to have to myself. I had planned to study. I had planned to write, which I’m glad I’m doing.

Well, we’re going to be getting them tonight instead, which sort of messes stuff up. I have to work tomorrow which means going to sleep early to wake up at 3 am. It’s their vacation. They are not going to want to go to sleep super early and the electronics are in the bedroom. At the time I still didn’t really have my own “away” space in the house to retreat to when / if I began to feel overwhelmed.

Coming home, tired, to the news that his kids were going to be coming over shortly made me feel defeated. I have to study for this test. I have to be ready for another day full of new tomorrow. Another day of pushing my brain to its limits, trying to absorb everything as quickly as possible so I can prove that I’m worth keeping on the team.

I don’t have it in me to get my ass spanked at Minecraft by a seven-year-old in addition to everything else I have to keep going at the moment.

Ox and I have worked it out, though. We cleared a corner in the addition for me and set up a table there for when I need to have my quiet time. I can take the Wonderboom speaker Big Bad got me for my birthday and listen to music. I can study there without kicking the kids out of the room. I can use the Surface as long as it has a charged battery. I can cross stitch, and there’s a part of me who wants to take a puzzle out there to work on because I’ve been wanting to work on a puzzle since I’ve gotten here.

I know the closet where my computer is set up is my space, but that corner is more of a safe space at the moment then the closet since I can legitimately be on my own without being a hindrance to anyone.

As the weather warms up and Ox starts feeling better and I begin to spend less energy on settling in, the addition will continue to get cleaned up and worked on. I’ve already spent a day out there, I think it was last week, organizing and throwing things out. That’s why we were able to so easily create the space for me tonight we were able to.

I’m grateful that even though he called out of work today due to being sick that he took the time to make me feel as comfortable as possible. A lot of our situation isn’t ideal, but we’re both making it work as best we can for each other. At least that’s what it feels like.

I have about an hour left before the kids get here and I still need to shower and prep for tomorrow, not that there’s really much prep work to do.

I need to make sure my shoes get into my bag. I should get out of work around 1 pm so I would really enjoy going to the gym before coming home. I want to make sure my scrubs get put out so I don’t have to make a bunch of noise in the morning getting ready.

I want to take my contacts out since I’m home and I no longer have to deal with the day. I want to take my bra off and get into pjs and still enjoy a quiet night, maybe with the cup of hot chocolate I’ve been wanting for days but still have yet to make.

Different doesn’t mean bad. Tonight doesn’t have to be bad.

I’m worried that not wanting to do much with the kids means that I’m a bad person or will, potentially, be a bad parent, but this is another layer of new that I’m having to adjust to. I’ve never been in this situation before. Big Bad had kids but he kept me separate from them.

I haven’t had years to learn how to be a parent. I’ve sort of thrown myself into this situation and now I have to figure out how to fill this role. The past weekends the kids have been here have been a nice, slow progression. The first weekend I had the hotel room so after spending a few hours at home I would drive away and spend the night at the hotel. I wasn’t staying at the house with them.

This past weekend we talked to both kids and they were ok with me staying at the house while they are there. They enjoy spending time with me, and, as far as we know, they both like me.

This is going to be a week of no break. This is going to be the closest to being a parent I have ever been and there’s part of me who’s terrified. I don’t know how to do this.

It’s reassuring knowing that Ox thinks I’m handling things well, and it’s a bit easier to see myself surviving knowing that I have a quiet spot to go to when I need to. I could take the kitchen drawers out with me and paint them. I could cross stitch, or draw, or continue to pick through and organize things in the addition.

There’s more than just me being trapped inside of a room connected to the living room where everyone hangs out. I have a place where I can not be in the way.

I don’t know. I think things will be ok. I think I have a better shot of doing this “right” then I did when I first got home.

And with that, I’m going to go so I can shower and do the things I need to do before studying and going to sleep.

I know there’s still a lot about “The Great Before” that I need to write about. My 21-hour drive from Orlando to Nebraska, my first weeks here, all the things I have and haven’t done…

After a month of being here, I’m finally at my home clinic. After a month of being here, I have a quiet spot. After a month of being here, I no longer feel awkward moving around the house. I don’t feel awkward pouring myself a glass of milk or using a container to fill up my water filter.

There’s still a lot of adjusting to do and I know right now my main goal is to survive through March, which is sort of short-sighted of me I suppose since right after March comes April and mom’s death day, but I’ll cross that bridge when I get there. I need to survive the next two days while studying for my test. It would be nice to feel confident in it.

After my test, it’s surviving the rest of the week of the kids being here. After that, it’s continuing to survive the financial stress of March. April will be hard for its own reasons, but it will also be the point where things start truly evening out and I’m looking forward to it.

Hopefully, I can get back into the trend of writing daily. This has been nice, even if it did get interrupted twice.


Daily Post 073: Two Weeks Later


Things are going well.

It’s been two weeks to the day since I’ve written. Time gets pushed ahead an hour which is sort of lame, but overall my body hasn’t noticed a difference.

I’ve been sleeping better the past few nights which is nice. For a while, I was having a hard time being able to sleep. The past five days or so have also been rough. Nothing bad has happened. I’ve just been sad.

I think there are a lot of factors that go into that.

The biggest is that it’s almost the two-year anniversary of mom’s death. I don’t like the word anniversary. I think I wrote about that last year; how anniversary makes it sound like something to celebrate. It’s another day where I have to go out and buy a flower for her. It’s the second time I will have to go and stand in front of the fake flower display at some store and figure out which one I want to get to signify this event in my life that I didn’t want to have happen.

It’s a heavy thought. This impending action I have to do. That I need to do. That I promised myself I would do because I have to do something to show that this day is significant. I don’t have a grave I can go to. All I can do is place my hands on her urn after adding another flower to the crystal vase I bought and make my promises all over again.

Not promises of being happy or not having breakdowns.

My promises to eat. To not stay in bed all day. To at least shower.

My promises of bare minimal survival because as long as I survive I can keep going which is what she wants for me.

I had a dream the other night while Ox was playing World of Warcraft next to me. I guess it was sort of a waking dream. I knew I was in bed with him. I knew it had been a while since I had talked to mom. I hadn’t seen her in a while and I knew she would be worrying about me. I had the thought that I should call her so she wouldn’t worry about me. So I could let her know I was going to be staying with Ox and that I wouldn’t be home for a while. I wanted to let her know I was ok.

It sucked when in the dream I remembered that’s now how this works anymore. I can’t call the same way I used to. But maybe that’s something I should be aware of. I haven’t written to her in a while. I’ve talked to her a few times. I’ve told her I miss her and that I wish things were different.

I like the way things are going in my life. I like where I am and I do look forward to my future most days. I know mom is happy for me. I just wish she were here to visit or to meet Ox or any number of the things that I feel like I can’t have or do because her presence isn’t physical.

I got my raise at work. 2%. So… like a quarter. I’m not complaining since most first-year techs get nothing. My boss and former teammates had nothing but positive things to say about my performance and character. Most of my ratings were 4 out of 5. They were actually really hard pressed to find anything constructive for me to work on since I’m pretty good about continuously improving. They mentioned that I was late for work a few times, but that was it. Other than that they all loved working with me and were confident that I would do well at my new clinics.

I am scheduled to take my national certification this Wednesday. I’m mildly nervous about it but I’ve started going through my flashcards again and I’ve been going through several lists on Quizlet and adding to my flash card collection when I run into things that I don’t know or feel I should add to my own cards.

I know I’ll continue to internally worry about the test until it’s over and I know mom will be standing behind me doing the “I told you so” dance when I pass the first time. If I didn’t worry I wouldn’t study or try so hard. I know in its own way my worry is a good thing. I just need to keep it in check and make sure it doesn’t change into anxiety.

I’m going to continue to be in training at work for the next two weeks which is mildly annoying, but I’ll finally be at the Beatrice clinic which I’m looking forward to. I’ll get a whole extra hour of sleep. 3 am wake-up calls instead of 2 am. Woo!

It’s sort of sad being an adult and being excited about shit like that.

I have slowly been working myself back into my routines. I meal prepped today which was extremely gratifying. I made chef salads along with a chicken alfredo dish. I made venison chili for dinner, too, which everyone seemed to like.

All of the laundry is done. The dishes are taken care of. My bag is packed for the gym tomorrow if I feel like going. All I need to do is fill my water bottles and I’ll be done with my “work prep” stuff. It’s a good feeling to feel like I’m on top of things in that regard.

I did go and talk to the YMCA guys earlier last week. Since I’ll be working in Beatrice it would be easier to go to the gym there rather than driving all the way back into Lincoln, but I wasn’t sure if my membership would work like that.

Well… it does. And if it ever becomes a problem with me going to the Beatrice gym more than the Lincoln one they said they would work it out. They’re more concerned with me going rather than where I go. It was actually a much less painful experience then what I was anticipating, so yeah. Depending on how work goes I might go and check out the gym before coming home. If not, there’s Tuesday which will be a shorter day and theoretically leave me with more time and energy for new things.

It all depends, and I’ve been doing pretty good about not giving myself shit for not being consistent with my gym going. It’s still very obviously winter here and the cold and cloudiness makes it hard to find the drive to go out or stay out. I’m still “new” at the gym and most days I don’t feel like dealing with more new since pretty much everything in my life is new.

New house. New town. New clinics. New state. New relationship. New bed. New elbows stabbing me at night. Yes… I know eventually you’ll read this, so I’m putting that part in there especially for you. Kisses :3

Sometimes making it through my obligations of work is enough for me. I got through all of that “new”. I don’t want to deal with more “new”. So I don’t. I know eventually, I’ll get there. Small steps. And I think that’s the biggest part I’m learning right now. Not everything has to happen right now, this second. I can take time to adjust and breath and get used to things before slowly adding onto the things I get established and stable.

I did go running the week before last. It was the first time I’ve run in a while. That sucked. Hardcore. My legs hurt, my breathing sucked, and I can tell that I’ve gained a little bit of weight back. When I bowed in on the mat at the gym to stretch after my shitty run I couldn’t bend as far or twist as much as I used to and almost every muscle complained at me, reminding me that I haven’t done anything remotely consistent since the beginning of December.

The yoga class I went to last Saturday was more about trying not to die while in downward dog than finding any sort of inner peace and I was sore for days afterward.

Overall my first gym experiences here were pretty demotivating and that’s something I’m having to align within myself.

That was my square one and that’s ok. Everything from those points forward will be a step forward from here. It doesn’t matter where I am or where I was at. What matters is what I DO.

So I went running again this week and I did better. My legs were less sore. My breathing was better. I was able to stretch deeper afterward. It was nice to see myself regain so much in such a short time. So I’m not as demotivated as I was and I think that’s helped make today better than what the past few days have been.

Financially things are tight. Warren is being himself. Mrs. Side Chick moved in but Warren is still trying to get his finances straight which means right now he has no money to give me.

Full Sail never got around to writing the check they owe me so that hasn’t shown up yet. Neither has my tax return. I got paid $4 this past paycheck because the only hours I got were the hours that I shadowed…

So yeah… I don’t have money to pay my car payment which is due tomorrow. It sucks, but there you go. I can’t magically poof money into my account. Payday isn’t until Friday. I’m going to call the bank tomorrow and let them know the situation. In the two or three years that I’ve had the car, I haven’t been late on my payments once. Maybe that will earn me a few brownie points or something. If not I guess I’m eating a late fee.

I’m hyper aware that I would be fucked right now if it wasn’t for the kindness of Ox’s parents. I stay here rent free. They pay for pretty much all the food. Today was the first time that I put any sort of “serious” money towards groceries and that was mainly because I was buying things for my lunches at work. I’ve bought things here and there, but this was the first major shopping trip that I’ve made for the house, and even then I only had to spend $50 since Ox’s mom gave me some money before I left for the store.

I feel awkward and… bad?… accepting her help like that, but I also know that I wouldn’t be able to do anything without it. I try to make up for it by cleaning and helping. Which that’s a story for another time.

I will say it’s nice not being the only person doing chores. Everyone does a little bit.

And yet as I write that I feel the need to say that the past few days I haven’t done as much as I was when I first moved here.

There was one day where I slept pretty much all day. Because of the sadness, I’ve been sleeping more. Ox and I talk about it sometimes. I ask his opinion. I know it would be better for me to sit and write more; to try to figure out my emotions for myself, but I like knowing what he observes in my behavior and his opinion of it.

The other night, the night where I slept most of the day, I came out for dinner, but shortly after eating I went back to the room, leaving my plate and cup on the table. Normally I would clear the dishes away and load the dishwasher, storing the leftovers into containers and making sure the kitchen is clean, but I didn’t have it in me to do it that night. Dinner was the most I could bring my self to do as far as human interaction. The sadness hurt and being around others made it that much more painful. I had made my appearance. I wanted to go back to the room where I could hide under the covers and continue to be sad because those emotions weren’t done yet.

I guess Ox’s mom was worried that I was silently protesting doing the dishes by leaving my stuff on the table, which made me feel awful because that’s not what it was at all. I hadn’t even realized I had left my stuff like I had. I was so wrapped up in getting away that I didn’t think about it. I didn’t think about how my actions might have been taken by others.

Ox said he explained the situation to her; how I’ve been having a hard time. Nothing further was mentioned about it so I guess things are ok. I’ve made a conscious effort to not let my sadness hinder others or create more work for those around me.

And I guess since I’m writing about everything I might as well throw in the fact that I’ve been on my period this whole time which totally doesn’t help anything.

Body: Hey. I know that you feel shitty right now. Here. Have this. It will help. : D

Me: … I really fucking hate you right now… Just so you know…

I’m glad that I can write that today feels more like a normal day. Everyone else is sick with head colds, but I’m finally breathing better. I’ve slept well the past few days. I’ve had two days off from work. I got my Ubox unpacked and into a storage unit which makes it feel more official. I got to touch all of my things again, and even though I don’t have them here at the house with me, I have them stored and permanently here.

Eventually, when I have money to spend, I plan to get another tattoo. This one will be on my right forearm and it will be for me. It will be the final mark of this transition. I’m looking forward to that day.

I know March is going to suck as far as finances go. Maybe I’ll get my new tattoo on April 4th. That gives me three weeks to create the design and find someone I like and schedule an appointment. I know I won’t get a tattoo every April 4th, but maybe this could be a way of marking my new year since that’s when it begins for me.

March is where I start getting full paychecks again. It’s when my schedule becomes stable. It’s where I get back on my feet. It’s where, hopefully, the weather starts to warm. It’s where I get back to the gym.

Surviving March is where things begin. I want that to mean something and I want something to mark this step forward for me. It’s something to meditate on further. I guess a lot of that depends on how this month actually goes. As irresponsible as it might be I could use the credit card to get the tattoo. It’s not like that debt is going to go anywhere anytime soon…

I think another part of the sadness I’ve felt recently is finally having the space to feel all the things I never let myself feel in Orlando. I have the space here to be sad. I have the time to come home and let the emotions have their time. I don’t have the constant drain of work. I have the time for self-care and maybe before I start really delving into that I have to go through the hurt and sadness first.

I don’t know. I haven’t really done a lot of soul-searching yet, but now with everything settling down maybe the sadness is my soul’s way of saying it’s time to look at those painful wounds that have been neglected for so long.

Writing helps. I’m glad that in addition to everything I have done today, that I have not only written but also made noticeable progress on the cross stitch I have been working on. Maybe I’ll start taking weekly pictures of it so I can track it.

Who knows. There are so many things I can do, or not do, and I have the space and time to do or not do them. It’s such a weird feeling and is another thing I’m having to adjust to.

My therapist actually reached out to me today. She said she had been thinking about me. I replied back explaining a bit of what has been going on in my life and asked if I could talk to her about some things that I would like her opinion on. She replied back saying of course. We can definitely talk. She wants me to let her know what my schedule is so we can work something out.

It’s nice to know I still have her support and connection.

When I first moved here I had anxiety any time Ox or I had to leave to go anywhere. I kept thinking about how one of us would get into a car wreck or die some horrible death and how we had both found happiness just for it to be stanched away from us.

I haven’t had those feelings for a few weeks now, but I still want to talk to my therapist about them. I also want to talk to her about the sadness I’ve felt this past week and mom’s upcoming death day.

At the moment I don’t really have much else to say.

I’m glad I wrote. I’m glad that even though everyone is sick that it’s been a pretty decent day. I’m glad dinner was a success. I’m glad I’m prepared for the coming week. I’m glad I’m finally going to be taking my test. I’m glad I’ll be at what will soon be my home clinic. I’m glad this Friday I get paid. I’m glad I have a car that works. I’m glad I have my computer set up and that I have clean clothes to wear. I’m glad I have a gym membership I can take advantage of. And I’m glad I have the time to do the things I want to do.

Things are going well. I’m doing well. And I guess that’s it for now.

Daily Post 067: Home


This isn’t the first time I have sat in front of my computer since I have been back from Nebraska. There’s actually a writing that I never posted before my trip which I doubt I will at this point. Really, most of that lost writing was me being definite. This is the first time that I’m taking the time to try to figure it all out, though.

I don’t know where to start with everything. It’s another massive tangled thing within my chest. I don’t think it’s really discord, but the fact is, there’s a lot.

There’s the apartment. There’s my job. There’s the trip itself. There’s everything with Ox. There are my relationships here. There are my brothers. There’s my grief. There’s just… everything.

There’s my life.

That’s basically what it feels like. It’s so much stuff it might as well be everything all at once and I don’t know where to start with that. There’s the mountain in front of me that I don’t know how to climb. This feeling of never being able to get to the top so taking the first steps are pointless. I’m striving for an unattainable goal so it’s easier to just not try.

But I can’t not try. I don’t know how to do that. To sit and accept nothingness, so here I am. Once again in front of my computer with a blank page in front of me, my words slowly filling it with black marks as Arrival At Sydney Harbour plays on repeat, instilling the sense of calm it always does for me. Safety, security. It makes the tension of standing in front of the mountain more ok. More bearable. More do-able.

I made my trip. I guess that’s a good place to start.

I worked three days in a row. That was brutal. I took an Uber to the airport. I made it through TSA without SWAT repelling down from the ceiling to confiscate my contact solution and deodorant stick.

I made it onto the plane. I survived the take off even though I still cried through it. There’s still the feelings of… I don’t know what. The thoughts of, “Mom is dead,” fill my head as the plane rumbles down the runway. Once I’m in the air it’s fine, but the takeoff… those few seconds are so much of everything…

I want her to still be here. I want her to be alive still and take off reminds me that she’s not, she never will be. Not how she was.

I survived both take-offs since there was a layover in Chicago.

I made it off the plan in Omaha.

I met Ox in person. I don’t know what else to say about our meeting. There aren’t words which could hope to explain those feelings. I’m glad it happened. I’m glad he hugged me. I’m glad we stood there for as long as we did holding each other. I’m glad I had the time I did to relearn how to breathe.

I’m glad we touched as much as we did through the time I was there. The random touches as we passed by each other in the hotel room. The holding hands. I’m glad we talked as much as we did. I’m glad the first place we went to was a forest so I could be away from literally everything. No cars. No people. Just emptiness and space and silence and all of these things I didn’t realize I was suffocating without.

In fact, every time I became overwhelmed, or borderline overwhelmed, he let me sit outside in the fifteen-degree weather with his jacket around me. He let me cry when I needed to, like after my interview.

Which I guess that’s another thing to write about. It wasn’t just a meeting. I showed up to the clinic and was welcomed inside of an office where I sat in front of an FA and an FA assistant while conference calling another FA. It was most definitely an interview and it went amazingly well. They’re interested in having me in the area and as far as I know are still working the logistics out.

After the interview, we drove to another park. It wasn’t an empty forest, but it was still nice. We sat outside for a bit at a picnic table before driving to another area, one of Ox’s favorite spots when he needs to get away. I was allowed to explain why every accomplishment I achieve sucks now. Why it’s painful. Why it hurts and feels pointless.

I can’t tell mom. I can’t tell her I did this amazing thing. Not how I’m used to, and I guess a big thing in that regard is that I don’t reach out to her spiritually much. I still question if it’s real. It’s something I need to work out but now, today, is not that time.

There was a lot of open communication with Ox. This is week four of knowing him actually, to the day.

One of the nights we were together we drank and instead of drinking and doing stupid shit or just having sex we looked up our personality types and read them to each other and then had super deep conversations about it. It’s things like that, moments like that which make us both feel connected to each other in ways that make me want to explore this.

The internet calls our pairing “the golden couple” and I can honestly say that even if it doesn’t work between us I’m glad I have met him. I’m glad I have someone who seems to so intuitively understand… me. All of me.

I met his parents while I was there and for the first time since last Christmas I sat down at a kitchen table and had dinner with a family. I felt part of the family. I felt… home… in the middle of a place I have never been surrounded by people I honestly don’t really know… I felt like I belonged. I felt warm and cared for and accepted for me.

I answered all of the questions I was asked as honestly as I knew how.

When Ox’s mom made the comment that she didn’t know how I could explain and be open about half the things I did I replied with it’s easier to be honest than to lie and I don’t know how to explain certain things without explaining all of it. All of the parts are important. The whole story is important and needed.

I didn’t go to dojos. I did walk through a grocery store. I didn’t drive around in the snow. I didn’t look at apartments.

I had my interview. I had lunch with Ox’s mom, and then the following day I spent the day at his house. In between those events Ox and I spent our time together learning each other in person and I wouldn’t trade a minute of my time in Nebraska for anything in the world.

I didn’t realize how claustrophobic Orlando was until I was sitting in the passenger seat of Ari’s car as she picked me up from the airport. I didn’t realize how much I didn’t want to be here anymore until the plane touched down and I had silent tears from wishing I was anywhere but here. It was the first time where I didn’t cry during the takeoffs. It was the landings which hurt. It was only during the last landing that I wished I hadn’t had to leave a place that felt so right.

There was a moment when Ox and I were together, at yet another park after having met his family, where I cried and admitted that I was terrified of all of this not being real. It was too perfect to truly exist that it had to be something I would wake up from. I would wake and the soul-crushing reality of it being a dream would be too much.

I know I will move. I know that Orlando isn’t where I want to be and that if things work the way I want for them to, that I will be leaving mid-February and beginning work in Nebraska the 5th of March.

I know a lot with the apartment is falling into place though my first night back felt like a disaster waiting to undermine everything I was striving for.

Right now I’m having to breathe and be patient while the ball gets tossed around the court from one person to another, rarely ever landing in my own where I can do something with it.

The two shirts Ox let me take back with me remind me that the experience, the trip, was real. That there is a home for me there, one I am waiting to go back to. They’re reminders that it was “I’ll see you later,” and not “Goodbye”.

I have my evening with Big Bad tonight and though I want to see him I don’t want to have to drive or deal with people or leave the sanctuary of my room. I do feel the need to acknowledge I am feeling better for having written even if I don’t feel I haven’t figured much out from it.

Maybe it’s solidifying that I do have a home now and not just a place where I sleep. Even if I’m far away from it, I have a home and that makes me feel more ok. More like there’s a point to everything. I’ve had more energy when interacting with my patients the two days I’ve worked then I have for all of December. I no longer dread the hours as they tick by, waiting to finally go home so I can be alone.

I’m fully present. Several of my patients knew about my trip and asked about it once I was back. They all wish the best for me and commented on how I will be missed and how I’m a kind, caring soul that made the clinic a better place. With almost everyone I have talked to I have nearly been brought to tears from their words. I didn’t realize I made such a difference for them.

It’s nice to know that I mattered and that I helped.

It’s nice to feel like I’m being an adult. That was something I mentioned to Ox yesterday while I was on one of my breaks. I feel like I’m figuring things out. I’m taking care of my life. And, for once, I feel like I’m living it for myself.

I don’t feel broken. I don’t feel injured. I feel like I’ve gone through that process of healing wounds. I’ve been the invalid, bedridden and feeble. I’ve progressed to a wheelchair and then crutches. And now, even though my body and soul still ache, I’m beginning to walk my path again. And this time I’m walking it for myself.

My path so closely followed my mom’s for so long, and now my path continues on and I must walk it by myself, for myself. I know she’s still with me, but she’s not here to hold my hand through it. She taught me to be strong, to stand tall, and to walk with confidence, and so for the first time, I’m doing that.

At least it feels like the first time.

I’m holding my head high and making the choices I want to make.

I know there were several times in her life that mom faced opposition to her choices. No one agreed and yet she lived her life how she felt it should be lived.

I only have one life. I only have these moments. I want to search and explore and experience and question. I want… to be happy. Content. I want to be away, where it’s quiet and open and spacious and… just away.

I know with this change, this chapter, there will be an end. And end to Orlando. And end to paths. I think I’m ready for that, though. I’m ready to move away from the past and to shed it much like a snake sheds it’s skin so that it may continue to grow.

There’s still a lot to figure out. There’s still information to gather, but I support myself, and I think that’s the biggest hurdle any of us face while trying to figure out our lives.

I support what I am doing. I think it’s the right thing, and so I’m ok with other people not agreeing with it. I am the only one who knows the full story, the full history of what got me to this point, to the point of sitting here in front of my computer on this day, January 18th of 2018.

This is my year of standing up, of standing tall, and even though I’m still drained from my trip and the days I’ve worked this week, I feel like it’s a confident and stable start.

I will not fall, and I will not break. And for now, that’s as far as I feel like climbing today. Maybe that’s all that needed to be climbed.

I am moving. That’s what all of these past weeks and days and events lead up to in the end. I have found home and I will move to be there and that alone, that statement, makes me feel ok.

I’ve found home.

Daily Post 065: Standing Up


It has been a lifetime since I have written, and I don’t mean that in an exaggerated sense of the phrase. I mean, literally, since I have last writen a new chapter has unexpectedly begun writing itself.

EVERYTHING is about to change but unlike how things changed when mom died, I want these changes. I feel like this is the change needed to finish becoming who I’m supposed to be and I realize that most all of the people in my life won’t understand or agree with it, and I’m ok with that.

This is another moment of writing for myself, regardless of who reads my blog. This is my life, my thoughts, and I won’t change the picture of it by omitting events or feelings. I won’t skew myself, misrepresent the person I am. I won’t dishonor this space by pretending that things did or did not happen the way they did.

My week away was decent. I spent most of the time playing World of Warcraft with my brother. I have a level 110 mage. Her item level is in the 870s. I’m getting back into the groove of the game and I like most of the changes that have been made. Not all… but most.

Monday, the 18th, started my week. Really, in hindsight, I suppose it was the start of this change even though I didn’t know it at the time.

I woke up early to take my car in for repairs. I was able to find the drop off location with relative ease. I only had to U-turn once in morning rush hour traffic. Hooray.

The woman handling my claim is extremely nice. She even took a look at the damage and gave me her opinion. After crawling on the ground to look under the bumper she said both wheels were straight so there most likely wasn’t any real structural damage from the accident. It “should” be all cosmetic.

I was given a rental car to use until my car is repaired. It’s an Accent. It’s a bit bigger than my car but I actually really like it. If I ever feel the need to trade in my car or get a new one an Accent is definitely up there on my list to try out.

Since I was in the area I wanted to figure out the remaining issues with school. First I needed breakfast, though. I knew of a Cracker Barrel not far from where I was. I decided to get over my anxiety of driving a new car that didn’t belong to me and get some coffee in my system. It would also give me a chance to battle plan out my day.

I was looking forward to how things felt like they were going go.

On my way to breakfast, I received a text message. It was from Mother Earth. She had read my blog about the car accident. Her comment hurt. She quoted part of my previous blog post to me, the part where I say I was glad I wasn’t injured and I was able to message the people I care about to let them know I was ok.

Mother Earth: Good to know.

I hadn’t messaged her and her words felt like a slash mark across my chest. It’s a cold feeling. Metalic. I can still feel where it is. It’s in the same place as when she got upset at me about dating Zane. The same place where she told me to never message her again because of the blow up with Josh.

I read that message and felt defeat. I still do. It took a few minutes to know what I wanted to do, to say. It felt like nothing would be good enough, right enough. I had already failed and any sort of justification would just intensify that failure.

I replied explaining that I had messaged three people, though after reflection on it, after stepping back from the quickness of my reply, I realized it was four. I messaged Jon first, letting him know that way if I ended up not being ok at least he would be able to sound the alarm. I then messaged both of my roommates in case I needed help transportation wise, and again, to sound the alarm if needed. Once everything was squared away and I had already completed my journey to work I called my older brother.

That’s it.

I didn’t call my dad. I didn’t call Big Bad or my blacksmith. I didn’t call Sir, or my uncles, or my cousin, or Allison. There was no need to call anyone else and tell them, “Hey, I’m ok. I know that you think this is a big deal and you want to do something, but it’s really not a big deal, my day is unchanged, and there’s nothing you can do. K. Thanks. Bye.”

I made a post on Facebook. I wrote about it on my blog because it happened. As far as my inconvenience level it was actually mildly convenient to get hit because it forced me to be in the vicinity of school at an early enough hour to get shit done.

I had already moved past it, the car accident, much like you move past the annoyance of brushing your teeth in the morning.

But that’s not how it stayed. This is the second time my blog has caused drama in my life. The second time it has been read and actions have occured because of that writing.

Sitting in my car, holding my phone, seeing a message that felt like our effort and time meant nothing left me with a choice to make.

What did I want to do?

And my answer, inside of my head, was nothing.

I am not going to apologize for how I handled this situation. I’m not going to… I don’t know what…

I’m not going to be responsible for someone else’s emotions. And I wasn’t going to open myself up to what felt like more hurt and discord when it was two days away from my birthday. Two days away from an agonizing reminder that mom is dead.

I replied saying who I had messaged, what was going on with the car, and that though I was feeling fine if I started to have pain I would go to the hospital.

She replied with I knew my body best and we haven’t spoken since then.

I’m not sure what else to say on the subject. I know the rest of my writing is going to affect at least two people who read this post very deeply if they read it before I talk to them, but this is my journal, my diary. This is where I figure all of my shit out. I NEED to figure things out before I talk to people and I have a right to my emotions, just like they have a right to theirs.

I’m not going to let the possibility of them reading this before I talk to them change what I write or when I post. I post once I’m done because I don’t know if I’ll get the chance to afterward. I post in the moment because these words, my words, belong in the moment they were created, not later when things have changed and progressed.

So yeah… A text message was the second major event of my week off and it wasn’t even past 11am of the first day.

I continued to Cracker Barrel. I had my breakfast. I figured out the hours and locations for the departments I needed to be at for the school tasks I wanted to complete. I went and got my ID made. I got my textbooks, finally, since the bookstore never called me back. Shitty service guys. I called twice. : /

I was going to get the parking decal for my car but I didn’t have the registration, nor did I know my license plate number so I decided to save that for a different day.

I did spend the evening with Big Bad. He cooked dinner. While he had been on his fishing trip, which he returned from sans shark attack, he caught a grouper. It was the largest fish caught that day so he won a pool he and his coworkers had going. It was a tasty meal. We had sexy time before going to sleep however for the first time in a while I didn’t sleep well next to him. I don’t remember why, but I remember that I had been hoping to feel better, more connected, but I didn’t.

It was still two days until my birthday. Even though I was with someone I cared about, things still sort of sucked.

I don’t remember all of the details from there. Things get hazy but then, there’s really not much to say. I didn’t train at all during my week off. I didn’t donate plasma, either. I played Warcraft and slept and hung out with my brother.

Wednesday, was the 20th, my birthday. My blacksmith came over for a few hours before he went to work. It was good to see him. We had sex but in all honesty, we spent most of our time cuddling/sleeping.

He asked if I was ok, to which I replied yes. He said he knew I was strong but was I really ok. I again said yes, that I was fine.

Me: I promise.

I didn’t feel connected, though, and there was nothing either of us could have done to change or fix that. I wanted mom but that connection can never be what it was. It’s not wrong. It simply is.

I had been fine-ish for most of the day, but I began hurting when he got up to leave to go to work. It’s like by the act of him leaving I realized I was alone.

I didn’t feel used, but I didn’t feel good, either. Much like how I didn’t feel better from my time with Big Bad.

I got back on WoW because I had told my brother I would, but I didn’t stay on all that terribly long. We did a few things with guildmates, Jon and I talked a bit in Discord, and then I went to bed.

I didn’t cry much that night and that’s something I will acknowledge. I didn’t cry as much as I thought I would that week.

The 20th is the first day that I really started interacting with Ox. That’s his Chinese zodiac sign, so that’s his code name. He’s wood ox actually and so yes, I do make jokes in reference to trojan horses sometimes.

Anyway, I’m sure you can see where this is going…

We’ve spent roughly three hours each day since then talking to each other and neither of us knows why. We can’t explain it. We can’t find the logic in it.

What I do know is that in the next few months, as soon as feasibly possible, I will be moving to Nebraska.

Am I moving there because of him?


And no.

I don’t want to stay in Orlando. I don’t want to stay at my job. I don’t want to stay at the apartment. I don’t want to have the roommates I do. And being completely honest with myself, I don’t want to be a nurse.

I don’t know what I want, but I want to figure it out and the pervasive feeling through this whole season was stagnation. The feeling that I can’t move forward here. I’m stuck here. I’m screwed here. I’m surrounded by reminders here.

Is my choice to leave stupid?

I don’t know. I haven’t done it yet. I don’t know what the repercussions will be for my actions.

I know that it feels right. It feels like there’s less resistance, less friction following this unexpected direction then staying here in Orlando.

My question for myself, the one I always ask when I’m not sure what choice to make; If I were to die tomorrow would I regret not doing this?


My answer is yes.

I would regret not doing this. I would regret not seeing what’s about to happen. Even if I crash and burn and crawl back beaten and bloody and broken, I would be content knowing I did what I wanted to do. It didn’t work, but at least I can die knowing I tried.

There are things I/we want to take care of before I do move. We have both said, “within the year”, but what we’re aiming for is within the next three months.

On my end, there’s the issue of school. My certifications. Finding a job. Finding a place to live. Leaving my friends. Leaving my lovers. Moving what little I have and figuring out what exactly it is I want to take with me.

There is a lot that goes into this decision and I am working through all of the aspects and doing the research for it as I go. I’m asking deep questions and I am being brutally honest with my answers.

I know parts of this choice are going to be painful. Big Bad and I just spent an afternoon together where he gave me a birthday present with a card that brought me to tears.

It hurts knowing that this choice will hurt him. I love him. I want for him to be ok and for this to not damage him and I don’t know if it won’t.

I know there’s more I most likely should/want to write about but this writing was interrupted by a phone call and now I’m not sure where I am within the writing or where I want to go, and really, all of this is a lot in itself. Maybe ending it, for now, is the best course of action so I can come back later and work through all of the many different parts one at a time.

I have set it within my mind that I am leaving. I’m leaving to go live in essentially what is a forest. I’m leaving to have the space and distance and solitude that I have craved for so long. There is a person involved but it’s more that he showed me this area exists and that, with work, it’s possible for me to get there.

I will be there. And as I find time to write, which I know I need to make more time for, I’ll work through everything that comes with this decision.

I think I know what this coming year will be for me. I wasn’t sure before, but now… now I think I know. I will leave this broken, empty, dusty den of what used to be and I will fly away to make a new one, my own nitch which I carve myself without approval or guidance. I am no longer a fledgling dragon and I will prove it to myself.

I need change if I am to continue to grow the way I feel I’m meant to.

This will be my year of standing up.

I had a year where I survived.

I had a year where I have become stable.

Now it’s time to stand once again and own the person I’m meant to be.

Daily Post 062: A Self-Care Day


Today is a day off. One which I’m grateful for. It’s 10:17 am and I have yet to do much of anything with the day.

Tuesday’s have a routine. I wake up at Big Bad’s. Usually, I wake up when he first gets out of bed, but I didn’t today. I have nebulous, fuzzy memories of movement, but I didn’t fully wake up. My first real memories of this morning where if him crawling back into bed, burrowing under the covers to tickle me with his freezing hands.

Today was the first day I’ve stayed with him where I didn’t feel well waking up. I was still insanely tired. I had a painful, sharp headache covering most of the front right side of my head.

It was the first time I didn’t feel ready for the day. On one hand, I did feel recharged, refreshed. We had time together when I thought I wouldn’t see him for over two weeks. A co-worker offered to switch days with me this past Saturday which meant even though I worked Monday I was able to leave early enough to have my evening.

It was fantastic. We watched Bad Santa 2 which was crude but funny and mindless. It was low-level stupid humor and really I think it wouldn’t have mattered what we watched. I wasn’t at work interacting with patients. I wasn’t studying for my certification. I wasn’t worrying about money or being frustrated with my roommates. Nothing was required of me aside from being present.

I remember being worried that I wouldn’t be able to fall asleep, but I guess I did.

I was pretty sure the headache was from dehydration. I didn’t drink anything on Sunday because I slept most of that day. I don’t really remember the last time I wrote. I worked Wednesday, was off Thursday, which I guess was the last time since I’m pretty sure I wrote about therapy that day.

I didn’t feel better after therapy. I still don’t, but maybe that’s because in eight days it’s my birthday and that thought hurts. This season hurts. I don’t think there’s anything that will make it better, not even therapy.

Anyway, I worked Wednesday, Thursday morning, then did all of my obligations for that day, then turned around and worked Friday and Saturday. It felt like I was at the clinic four days in a row, which in a way I was. Even if Thursday wasn’t a “full day” at the clinic, I was still there and still had an extremely productive day afterward. It wasn’t a rest day by any stretch of the imagination. So by the time I finally got to Sunday I had nothing in me to give.

When I woke up Sunday I went back to sleep. The few times I actually got up were purely for bathroom breaks and food. I guess it would have been smart to drink something while I ate, but I didn’t. I didn’t really start feeling like I was “with it” until around 5pm.

I didn’t shower until around 8 pm and the only reason I did was because I had literally no food for work on Monday.

I knew I didn’t have the energy or motivation to cook so I bought premade salads, something I normally think of as a waste of money, but all I need to do is survive this week, and if not having to cook helps me do that then it’s a good investment.

I got a rotisserie chicken with coleslaw and instant potatoes so I could make meals with that as well as a veggie lasagna which I just got done cooking.

I worked my shift yesterday, Monday. It went fairly smoothly. The patient who was a jerk to me the other day complained to my FA. He pulled me aside and said that she was pissed at me and to not mess with her. He said he had been around me long enough to know her story was BS and that he knew I wasn’t disrespectful or rude to her the way she was saying. He said she’s like that to the people at her nursing home, too, and to just let it be water under the bridge.

It made me feel cared for that all of my team members who this woman talked to didn’t believe her story. It made it easier to not care about her opinion. If she wants a target to be angry at, fine. I’ll be her target. I have 11 other patients every day who need and want my help during her shift. If she doesn’t want to interact with me then that means I have more time and energy for those other 11 people.

Monday I helped mix acid again. Next time I’ll be the one doing all of the work while my trainer supervises me. I might want her to watch me twice just to make sure, but overall it’s a fairly easy process.

I also had to make a billion CVC kits. Ok… not really a billion, but I did 20 termination packs during my first break, which yes, I do catch a lot of flak for working during my break. I like doing it, though. The stockroom is always empty. Making packs is organized and structured. It’s one of the few times I can sit and listen to music and de-stress, and a lot of the times it’s too busy on the floor to step away and make the packs during the day, so yeah, I don’t mind spending 15 of my 30 minute break alone doing something mindlessly structured away from people. I’m ok with spending that time being anti-social.

Not only did I do the 20 termination kits, I also did 30 initiations and 30 tego packs before I left the clinic because ALL of the CVC bins were empty. That’s in addition to the 24 needle packs I made while I was on the floor.

Yes. That’s a lot.

At the moment we have a lot of new patients with CVCs rather than graphs and fistulas. On TTS days we have 18 patients with CVCs. That means almost all of the termination packs I made yesterday will be gone by tonight along with over half of the initiation packs. Packs need to be made, but there’s rarely downtime to do it. It’s annoying. It’s something that I’m going to bring up in our meeting along with organizing the drawers on the floor. I’ve been at the clinic long enough to have confidence in speaking up, and I feel I have earned the respect of my coworkers enough to be heard when I make suggestions.

Anyway, Monday was a pretty full day with little sleep and little recovery time from the previous week. I was glad to leave the clinic. I was glad I had my evening ahead of me, and I was glad Tuesday was a day off.

So here I am. Back at home. Today is a much different day than how my Tuesday’s usually go, though, and all of that has to do with being so tired and sick feeling this morning.

Normally I would leave Big Bad’s and come home to start chores before going to training. After training would be showering and eating before going to donate plasma. Once I finish with donating I normally go to my sports bar to eat and study. The rest of the may have a few more chores like finishing meal prep or some such, but those are the main things for my Tuesdays and Thursdays recently.

That’s not how today is going to go at all. The first thing I did aside from drinking water was cancel my training. I told L I wasn’t feeling well and asked if it would be ok to try to meet Thursday. She said that was fine and that she would message me tomorrow to see if I was feeling better.

With my first obligation of the day taken care of, I went back to sleep on the couch. I slept until 9ish. When I woke up my headache was gone, which confirmed it was most likely from dehydration or a combination of dehydration and tiredness. I had more water before trudging into the kitchen. I put the lasagna I bought Sunday in the oven, ate breakfast, then went back to sleep again.

The lasagna is done and now I’m left to figure out the rest of my day.

I’m not going to be donating today. I don’t think it would be a good idea and I don’t want to risk having a bad donation on the one day I have before going back to work. I’ve been going at life pretty hard. I want a day to myself that’s actually relaxing that I’m conscious long enough to actually remember.

There are a few chores I need to do, like cleaning the litter box, but laundry is done, food is taken care of, so aside from paying bills there’s not much else to do.

Rest. Not get sick. Self-care. Those are the things on my to-do list for today.

I took the practice test for my certification Saturday night. I got a passing grade on it, though it wasn’t as high as I wanted it to be. Since this is my blog, and I’m supposed to be honest here, I passed with a 75. You need a 75 to pass, so I barely made it.

Most of the questions I missed were from the chapters I haven’t read yet, so there’s a small amount of comfort from that. Some of the questions were about medications, which I don’t think will be covered. Those questions fall into the category of “what the actual fuck” for me since that content isn’t listed anywhere in the study material. If I knew I needed to know it, I would study it, thus why I got it wrong, because I didn’t have the information to study.

It’s one of the reasons I hate certification tests. There’s always bullshit questions that lower your grade and make you feel like a failure because you didn’t get a perfect grade even though you aren’t a failure.

So yeah, right now I got a barely passing 75 on the practice test, but I have a better idea of what I need to be looking at, mainly the stuff I haven’t looked at yet. I’m happy to say that for the 75% I got right, I was extremely confident with the material. I’m not scared of the actual test and I’m on track for having everything taken care of during the first week of January. It’s going to cost me an extra $50 to have the process expedited, but I’m ok with paying the cost to have it over and done with before classes start.

Pretty much the only thing I plan to do today is to go to my sports bar to study. I feel like having a good meal with some solitude would be beneficial. That way I’m not staying at home “wasting” the day away. I still progress even if it’s just a little bit, and it’s not a taxing or intense obligation that will deplete me for tomorrow.

I have two more days to get through at work. Wednesday, then two days off, then Saturday. Sunday there’s a meeting at the clinic, but it shouldn’t last too long, and once it’s over my week off begins. I still haven’t figured out what to do during my week, but maybe that’s something I can figure out today. While I’m paying bills I can sit and figure out how to divide up my $500 of birthday / Christmas money.

Kyle may have a job by the end of the week. His former employer got in touch with him. Kyle’s essentially hired, provided he passes the background, which there’s no reason he wouldn’t. That would be amazing. If he could actually start paying rent… My brain can’t even begin to process my finances improving that much. Having an “extra” $400 to put towards my debt… and if Warren keeps to his word and begins actually paying me back, not just making his monthly rent payments…

In the coming new year, my financial situation might not be the dark depressing forever nothingness that has been eating away at me for months. I’ll have my dollar raise from my certification, and people will be keeping their word, and things won’t suck, and might actually be ok.

I haven’t allowed myself to think of things “being ok” because it felt like such an impossible, foreign thing. But now there are actions and data to support the “being ok” idea and those thoughts bring such a feeling of relief that I want to cry.

It would mean I’m not the failure I feel like. I would actually be adulting well enough. I would be making progress to being able to live alone, to getting away from the dependency I once again placed myself in. Maybe, finally, I will have learned this lesson.

It’s something I talked about in therapy, and it might be the main reason I don’t feel better from having gone. I think my therapist is frustrated with me because I did the same thing with Kyle that I did with Warren, that I did with pretty much every person I’ve lived with.

We talked about boundaries and protecting myself financially.

I don’t want to stop helping the people I care about. I help people the way I would want to be helped if I was in a shitty situation. There is a point where it’s harmful, though. I’m not going to sit here and type about “how I’m learning where that line is” and other inspiration BS like that because I honestly don’t know if I’m learning that or not.

I know I am learning that I’m tired of people’s bullshit. I’m tired of being burned for helping. I’m tired of not being able to help myself because I’ve injured myself in my effort to help.

I don’t know if that’s gaining wisdom or becoming jaded. And right now, a little over a year and a half after my mother’s death, eight days before I turn 29, I don’t care which it is.

I know I am driving a stake into the ground, splitting the Earth beneath me as if I’m throwing down Thor’s hammer. I’m done being “here”. I’m done sinking back into this situation and feeling these feelings.

I WILL NOT knowingly do this to myself again.

Mom isn’t here to help me. There’s isn’t a bailout option for me. There isn’t the coping mechanism of a phone call to help me deal with the stress. There’s only me and if I want to be there for myself I have to protect and look after me.

So yeah… That’s about it. I’m tired but I’m hanging in there. I think things will get better soon and until then I’m not feeling bad about doing the things I need to do to keep going.

I’m going to keep fighting the fight even if that means some days I don’t fight at all.

Daily Post 061: Ending A Long Day


Today has been a long day.

It started at 3:30 am. I showered, changing back into my night clothes afterward because I refuse to wear my scrubs or a bra any longer than I have to.

It’s part of my morning routine now. Wake up. Shower. Redress since I’m not actually dressed yet. Go downstairs, and yes that is on the “to do” list because that action sucks at 4 am and deserves a gold star for being accomplished. Brew coffee. Heat breakfast. Pack lunch. Fill water bottles. Clean dishes if there are any. Eat and drink, basking in the 15 minutes of silence and stillness I’m able to experience. Sigh when my alarm goes off. Actually get dressed. Make sure I have my cell phone, wallet, keys, and sunglasses not that I actually see sunlight on the days I work. Also check to ensure I have socks and my shoes packed in my gym bag since I wear my flipflops into work; yet another example of my defiance. I refuse to wear my shoes longer than I have to.

I enjoy having my cup of coffee still. I’m glad I haven’t given it up and that I reclaimed those moments for myself rather than trying to drink coffee on the way to work like I was for a few months. There have been times where I’ve let those moments, my coffee moments, last a bit longer than I “should”. I allow myself five more minutes of silence, sometimes ten more minutes. If I’m going to spend the next 16 hours giving and interacting and caring and being fully present, then I deserve an extra five minutes. I’m allowed those five minutes. On those days I still arrive to work on time, I’m just not as early as normal.

Today I didn’t do an extra five minutes. Today I woke up tired, but at the same time refreshed. I knew it would only be three hours at work. I KNEW when I would be leaving and that in itself did wonders for my perspective. I knew everything I was about to experience was voluntary. I knew I had the rest of my day ahead of me and I was looking forward to it.

Work actually went fairly smoothly. Everyone got on the machines on time aside from the one person who showed up late. One person called out from second shift so we were able to arrange for one of the third shift patients to come in early. While my fellow teammate was on break I was able to do ALL of the chores on our side. Before I came back from my own break I stopped by the stock room to load up on the things we needed.

Honestly, there was very little interaction with people today. Aside from treatment initiations and communicating with my teammates it was fairly quiet. It was nice. I even got to have the breakroom to myself since I was the last person to go.

The only shitty thing about work today was leaving my lunch box in the fridge at work, and even that isn’t really shitty so much as it is annoying.

Once I left work I drove to the gym for training. I changed out of my scrubs. I took off my ring and necklace and I committed myself to actually training today. I would make this a good day and with that in mind I took my water bottle and met up with L.

She had me start off by running a bit on the treadmill since I was early. I haven’t been running all that much but I’m pleased that I ran fairly well. I continue to feel stronger and better which I guess is a testament to how I am continuing to improve physically.

Today was intense at the gym. L didn’t hold back and neither did I. I told her how my core has been sore the past two days and how it was a good sore. It’s the type of sore that lets you know you’re getting stronger. The same with my arms.

We focused on legs today. There was a lot of jumping and burpees and inchworms and hating L’s next client for messaging that he was running late because that meant L wanted me to run my obstacle course a third time rather than only doing it twice. I beat my time each time, though, so I guess there’s that.

I was exhausted when I got home. By 10:30 I had already been awake for 7 hours on 4 hours of sleep. There’s some perspective that makes me feel better about my next action…

I curled up on the couch for an hour. I’ve felt bad-ish about that almost all day until the last sentence I wrote. No wonder I was as tired as I was. Not only had I gone to the gym. I had pretty much already done a full day and very little sleep. I totally earned that hour of rest. I take back all of the guilt I felt.

After my hour of rest, I ate then showered so I could donate plasma.

That’s been going well. My account is flagged since I got a tetanus booster shot on the 28th. I’m still allowed to donate, it just means it’s slightly more annoying to check in.

My arm is still sore this time. I think I might end up with a bruise again. I haven’t bruised up since we stopped using my median cubital veins. I was hoping those days were behind me since we found the awesome vein that we’ve been using, but alas, it too might be getting tired and want a break. I don’t blame it. Getting stabbed twice a week with a 17 gauge needle must suck.

The phlebotomist who normally sticks me even mentioned how the vein wasn’t popping as much is it normally does. I asked if that could be a hydration issue and she said that’s what she was worried about. The donation itself went well though and I can’t imagine drinking more water than I already had. I did over a gallon yesterday and was close to a gallon before donating today since I was awake so early in the morning.

I think next week I’m going to switch back to my right arm and see if we can find a better vein on that side. If not maybe using my medians again for a little while would be good. Site rotation and all that jazz.

Anyway, I ended up being pretty hydrated after all. Donation went well and by the time it was over and my arm was taped up it was time for me to head out to go to therapy. I haven’t been in a while. I think my last session was a week or two before Thanksgiving.

I cried a lot during this session.

I talked about my blow up fight with Warren over him ignoring my messages about rent. I talked about getting tired of Kyle. I talked about Jon’s situation. I talked about work and how school is starting.

We talked about mom a lot. I talked about how I felt bad realizing how little I’ve written to her, how little I’ve written this year in general. I talked about how this was supposed to be my year of stability and how I actually think I haven’t done half bad for myself.

She asked about the plasma donating and I explained that I felt better about it then I did in the beginning. I said since it feels like something I’m choosing to do rather than an obligation I’m being forced into that there was a sense of confidence and independence that came from it.

I don’t have to ask people for help. I’m helping myself and fuck anyone who stands in my way. Maybe there’s a level of defiance with it. I refuse to back down. I refuse to work overtime. I refuse to be more scared of an inch and a half piece of hollow metal versus 200 pounds of pure muscle trying to choke me out on the mat.

I refuse to be a victim and if donating helps me change the situation I’m in so I can eventually get out of it, then fine. I’ll do it, and I’ll still train and go to school and work full time while I do it.

That sounds all good and big and bad until I cry my eyes out in therapy and still have to drive myself home, get gas, and figure out food, all while I’m trying not to pass out behind the wheel.

Ok. I wasn’t that tired, but I was so ready to be home and done with the day. I stopped by a Taco Bell after donating but didn’t have time for a full meal before going to therapy. I think eating something helped, but it wasn’t enough, and I certainly didn’t drink enough.

I was tapped out and I knew it. I stopped for gas since I had 5 miles left on my gauge. I went to Publix since it was in the same plaza as the gas station and picked up a rotisserie chicken with coleslaw and a box of mac and cheese. Totally not the healthiest dinner but I wasn’t looking for health. I was looking for warm and tasty and on some level, comfort.

When I got home Kyle was watching something on the TV. I didn’t have it in me to care. I put my stuff down on the kitchen counter since opening the fridge was too much in that moment, then went directly upstairs to my room. For once I couldn’t hear the TV in my room. I normally can, even with my door closed. But today I couldn’t and it was amazing. I cuddled up with Scarlet and let the “not care” flow through me. I dozed for a bit, waking up to find Scarlet snuggled in the crook of my arm.

Eventually, I went back downstairs to eat. I wasn’t hungry but I knew I needed to do that. And drink. More drink than eat, but both were on the list. And switch the laundry because I started that before leaving the apartment to donate.

Kyle was in the middle of turning off the PlayStation which I was grateful for. He tried talking to me and showing me a facial rig some guy made in Unity, but I really couldn’t have cared less. I didn’t want sound. I didn’t want another person’s presence and eventually, he went back upstairs to do whatever.

I devoured most of the chicken barbarian style while I stood in the kitchen with the lights off and no sound. At some point, I managed to start the mac and cheese.

I watched a few episodes of Fate/Stay Night. I think I’m about halfway through the series now. I like the characters but the storyline is pretty weak, which is lame.

And so now here I am. Writing.

Jon wants to play WoW. To be fair I asked him earlier if he would be interested in gaming tonight, but right now I don’t know if I have it in me. Maybe if we were just running around doing easy quests but I really don’t feel like healing our way through dungeons. I don’t want to have to think or do anything important.

I guess I’m going to go for now and see what can be done as far as a compromise. Maybe it will work out that we game on Sunday instead. I do know I have another liter of water to get through before I’m happy with my water intake. So much water. Oh my gawd. >.<;

Seriously. I don’t understand how my eyeballs aren’t floating around inside of my head with how much water I’ve been trying to drink.

Oh. No studying happened today, but I’m ok with that. I’ve done really well this week and I still have two days of work to survive.

I got this.