Daily Post 044: On The Mend

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It hasn’t been the worst five days, but it hasn’t been the best either.

It started with Thursday evening, just after work.

Big Bad and I had made plans for the evening. It had basically been my “light at the end of the tunnel.” You know. That one thing you’re looking forward to, so all the minor little annoyances through the week aren’t that bad because this one epic good thing is going to happen.

Only it didn’t happen.

I got out of work, got into my car, and sent a text message asking if we were still good for the evening.

Big Bad: Not tonight. Saturday?

That brought me up short. Like, mental functions came to a screeching halt because what do you mean not tonight? What happened? Why did it change? As an introvert, I’m all about canceled plans but only when I’m the one to cancel them or when it’s something I don’t want. I wanted this. This was what made waking up at 2 am and not breaking down in front of patients worth it. This was my reward, my recovery. This was my one epic good thing.

Why did it change?

But there was no explanation. To be fair I didn’t ask why. I said I would have to look at my calendar to make sure I wasn’t double booking myself but I didn’t ask why. I don’t really feel like it’s my place to ask why I guess. If he wanted me to know he would have told me. But he didn’t tell me and so my brain is still left to its own conclusion.

Maybe he was tired. Maybe something happened with his mom. Maybe it’s another girl since we’re in an open relationship. Maybe he had a shitty day at work. The reasons are pretty endless and in the end, really don’t matter. Our plans changed, or at least what he wanted his plans to be changed, and so this is where we’re at.

I was hurt and on some levels still am, though since time has passed, not as much as I was.

It felt like being stood up though and that sort of sucked. So that’s how I spent Thursday night, alone, at home, drinking Strong Bow and watching the new Power Ranger movie finally, which was actually pretty epic in its own right. I mean, how can watching an illegal download of Power Rangers while you’re intoxicated not be badass?

Friday was hard. It was mom’s birthday. Would have been her birthday if she were alive but she’s not so it seems sort of silly to me to celebrate it. I acknowledged the day. My brothers acknowledged it. Several of our close family friends reached out to us, but that was it.

I respect the day for what it meant, but the day I honor now is her death day.

That doesn’t mean Friday didn’t hurt. It did. Warren tried being playful with me a few times only to be thoroughly shut down. I ended up apologizing to him while he was in the kitchen. I hugged him from behind while he was putting his lunch in the microwave and said I was sorry for being bitchy, that it was mom’s birthday and that the day sort of sucked.

He held my arms around him and said it was ok and that he wasn’t letting go. We talked like that for a while, my head against his shoulder blades since he’s so much taller than me. I giggled and laughed even as tears were running down my cheeks. It helped me feel less alone. I had lunch with David to talk about his logo branding again since we’re back to square one with that, but even with the day not being all that bad I still hurt and drank again that night.

I remember what mom’s birthday was like last year and so I’m glad to say I feel I improved on how I handled the pain. I’m sure as time continues its relentless march I’ll become better, but there was an improvement and I’m proud of that. I watched Fantastic Beasts and Hidden Figures Friday night. Both good movies.

Saturday I still hurt. I still didn’t want to do anything. My blacksmith wanted to meet with a few other people to discuss a DnD campaign. I agreed to meet them at 7 pm. The location chosen was a gamer pub that I’ve been to before. In my head, I had the feeling that going there was a bad idea. If we were even able to get a table on a Saturday evening it would most likely be so packed and loud we wouldn’t be able to hear ourselves think much less discuss our campaign.

Well, apparently it was a Harry Potter weekend event thing at the pub so it was even more packed than usual. I got us in line for a table for six which was a 40-minute wait. In the mean time everyone else had shown up and we talked outside while we waited for our time. 50 minutes later it was still about a 30-minute wait. We decided to go elsewhere for food. Let me dig out my surprised face…

The other couple made it to the sushi place first, followed by me. About 15 minutes later my blacksmith still wasn’t there. I sent a text asking if everything was alright. Before I got a response the other couple decided to leave. I asked if they still planned on being part of the campaign. The guy replied with he wasn’t sure. He would text and let us know.

Irrational Right Brain: So basically you’re saying no, you don’t want to be part of it, you’re just too chicken-shit to say it out loud.

About two minutes after they had left my blacksmith called me saying he couldn’t for the life of him find the sushi place. I said I didn’t know if it was really worth the trouble of him finding it since the other people had just left. He decided to go home instead since he had been called into work later that evening anyway.

So that basically turned into an hour of me wasting my life. I messaged Big Bad to let him know the campaign had fallen through and if he still wanted to hang out that I was able to. About an hour later I got a reply saying he was already heading to bed but that he missed me.

Irrational Right Brain: Yeah… I miss you, too. I miss not feeling alone and stood up constantly.

Rational Brain: You’re not stood up constantly… It’s just a series of unfortante…

Irrational Right Brain: Fuck you! It’s constantly. /pouts in corner

I went back home. On the way, I called Warren and asked him to check the Dr. Pepper that we’ve had for forever to make sure mold wasn’t growing on it. I also told him I was getting a pizza and that he was going to eat it with me while drinking and watching a movie. He didn’t seem all that heartbroken about his assignment.

I got a bottle of Fireball, picked up the pizza, then came home and watched Ghost in the Shell, a live action movie of one of my favorite animes. The movie wasn’t bad. I don’t know why it got such horrible reviews. People suck I guess.

Anyway, that was my Saturday.

Sunday started off alright. I went to Perkins and had breakfast. I enjoyed my cup of coffee while staring out of the window into space. I wasn’t as sad as I had been the previous days but I still didn’t feel at my best.

I was supposed to see Mother Earth but those plans changed to a phone call. I was actually ok with that change. I did stop at a gas station for a pack of cigarettes and a bottle of water before driving to my park where we ended up having a two-hour conversation.

I think a lot of things were aired out. I do think her and I will be ok, but that Josh and I may never fully recover. Having been able to tell my side of the situation and hearing the aftermath of what happened I feel like I was thrown under the bus by him and I don’t think there’s a way to recover from that. You can’t fix feelings of betrayal.

You can explain them, rationalize them, but it doesn’t change the fact that they’re there. The stab wound in my back, the fallout of being labeled a homewrecker, the loss of two of my closest friends for over a year… none of that can be taken back, and they all stem from his actions/explanation. Intentional or not, he didn’t stick up for me when shit was going down is basically the situation.

Instead of defending my name he allowed people to think I was a sleazy skank. It sort of sucks knowing that, but I would rather know than not know.

I was pretty emotionally drained after the conversation but I did manage to go do the grocery shopping along with prepping the food and even going as far as to cook half my meals.

I didn’t do much else for the rest of the day.

Monday is basically a black hole in the world of Jen. It was what I guess I’m going to start referring to as a “heat” day, though to be fair it was something that was building for a while.

I thought about writing a drunken post about it last night but, thankfully or unthankfully, it depends on your perspective, I didn’t and went to sleep instead.

I would say I needed my partners, but need means you would die without it and since I’m still alive I guess it’s not a need, though I can tell I’m still not really my full self so maybe it is a need. I don’t know. Shit like that gets complicated because having shelter is a need but you can go for a while without that. Same with food. Blarg.

I desperately wanted to be touched yesterday. Sexually, affectionately. I wanted my mates and that was the one thing I couldn’t have. Sometimes that makes me depressed. Female ferrets can actually die if they don’t mate while they’re in heat, so the depression thing is something I’ve come to accept. I’ll get sad and feel alone and “woe is me” but eventually it passes. The fuzzy feeling inside of my head and my obsessive thoughts usually go away after going to sleep. My craving for rare steaks and dark chocolate go away and I’m back to my productive self.

Yesterday I wasn’t depressed though. I was frustrated and no matter what I did the irritated feeling wouldn’t go away. Towards the evening I drank again, which didn’t really ease things over but it made me more accepting of my situation. I have two partners and for the past six months, I’ve not been able to be with them when my body craves them most.

Drunk Irrational Right Brain: What the actual fuck is the point of having mates then? /rage

Really if I had written last night I’m sure it would have been a lot of bitching about how society represses female sexuality, how I shouldn’t feel ashamed for actually wanting / needing to get laid, and how frustrating it is to not be able to meet those needs even though theoretically, I should. Maybe also something about wanting it more than once a week or every other week. You know… pretty much what I’m ranting about now so maybe being drunk would have had nothing to do with it. More F bombs, maybe, but looking at it now, that most likely would be the only difference.

Like I said, it was something that was building for a few days. Most likely since Thursday and the sadness of mom’s birthday sort of masking the actual build up.

Today has been the best day so far out of my five-day break from work. I was supposed to work Saturday but my boss actually took that day from me. He wanted to be on the floor to see how the changes we’re making to the patient schedule actually work rather than being told how they work. I actually really respect that about him. I feel like my boss is a true leader rather than a dictator.

I go back to work tomorrow, Wednesday. I also work Friday, but those are the only two days on my schedule this week. Those are 16 hour days, so while at first, I gave myself shit for not having a lot of days, I totally take all of those thoughts back because those are going to be really long days. >.<;

I haven’t been to the gym at all since last Wednesday. The first three days I was ok with. I was emo about my plans being canceled, then I thought it was a good idea to take it easy since it was mom’s birthday and I haven’t had a legit rest day in literally weeks. Then I was in heat and only wanted to be around specific people and destroy anyone/thing that wasn’t those specific people. And now we’re at today.

I had training scheduled for this afternoon but moved it to Thursday instead. I’m not feeling the whole “having an instructor push me” thing. I really don’t want to deal with people still even though my mind isn’t fuzzy anymore. I’ve been way more productive today. I’ve cleaned the kitchen mostly, I’ve done a full load of laundry with plans to wash my sheets since they’re infested with cat fur. The woes of cuddling with Scarlet.

I’m thinking about going to boxing at noon. That’s still tentative. I like the idea better than going to the gym with my trainer and I know I’ll feel better after doing something since I’ve gone almost a week with no form of intense physical exertion. It would let me stop by the store for more tomatoes as well, which I need to finish one of my meals for the week.

There’s a lot of positives for going, but there’s still a larger than normal part of me in the “fuck it” mentality where it really doesn’t matter to me if I go or not. I really just need to state one way or the other and stick with it rather than flipping back and forth because that’s too much energy.

I’m going.

There. It’s done. I have 30 minutes before I need to leave. All I need from the store is tomatoes. Quick in and out, then back home to cook and shower.

I am picking up Mother Earth from work so we can see each other face to face. We both agree small steps should be taken towards mending our relationship. We both agree we’re part of each other, which I feel the ease of which we were able to converse on the phone proves. We both agree that even though we’ve done well this past year and we’ve existed, we haven’t fully lived either and part of that is because of the absence of each other in our lives.

I don’t think it would be good for me to show up to one of their game nights with everyone and pretend that things are normal and fine. I think being slowly reintroduced to the group would be best and that honestly maybe I’ll never be ok with going to a game night or hanging out with the whole group again. I don’t want to see Josh in the group, or alone, or really at all. I think there’s going to need to be a lot of meditation before I can rationally hear his side of why he let things happen the way they happened and even then I, while I might be able to accept it, the damage is done and maybe this distance is a consequence for his choices.

I don’t know.

I do know I’m not ready for it, and that this meeting with Mother Earth is a small step towards what we don’t know. We want each other back in our lives at least as friends, sisters. She’s my Mother Earth and I’m her Earth Dragon.

I have less anxiety over this meeting than I did over the potential meeting of Sunday and the resulting phone call. I think her and I will be ok in whatever capacity we decide to take this to. I don’t need to figure everything else out just yet, so I’m not going to or worry about it at the moment.

I do have slight anxiety over the thought of going back to the dojo. I recognize it, acknowledge it, and I’m doing pretty well at not giving myself shit for it. I don’t know if I’ll go tonight. I guess it depends on how the rest of the day goes. I do plan on working the dojo back into my schedule though now that my arms are fairly healed.

After a few days to a week of going back, I’ll be alright. It’s that initial push back into it that’s going to be rough.

I guess I’ll go for now. I still want to take a quick shower before heading out for boxing.

These haven’t been the best or most productive days, but they haven’t been the worst either. Just got to keep on keeping on.

Daily Post 019: Temporary

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Let’s see…

I wrote Friday. The day I found out that I was denied for the job.

I went through a lot of the 30-Challenge posts. I have a clearer idea of what I want to achieve and how to achieve it. Most of it comes back to:

Getting a job
Finishing the PCT program
Continuing to kick ass at the dojo

I ended up talking to my younger brother. That sort of sucked, though there’s a story for how the day evolved to the shitty conversation I had with him.

I went and made a payment for the EKG class I took. While I was there I saw one of my former classmates. She had just gotten done taking the board test. She failed by three points.

We ended up standing outside talking for a bit. The subject of my interview came up and I had to explain how I was denied and how the email hadn’t specified a reason why.

She said that even though companies aren’t allowed to discriminate, that it most likely had to do with my purple hair.

I hadn’t thought of my hair as an issue since it was mentioned during the interview. I had been told it wouldn’t be a problem. Accommodations would be made as long as I wore a head covering.

The conversation with my classmate made me begin to wonder, though. Am I going to have to give up my hair in order to get a job?

The thought of having to dye my hair back to “normal” physically hurt. I know I am not my hair, but my purple is important to me. Purple is the color of the 7th chakra, the crown chakra at the top of the skull. It represents our connectedness to the Universe and energies around us.

I don’t dye my hair because purple is my favorite color, or because I’m being a punk ass millennial and “sticking it to the man”. This is part of my spirituality, and it sucked, hardcore sucked, to have the realization that almost all of society would stand in front of me and say, “well if you want a job you have to conform”.

In my head that’s a lot like telling a Christain, “You can work here, but only if you renounce your faith and tell people, daily, that you don’t believe in Jesus.”

Yeah, you could do that. You could say those words. There’s nothing stopping you from stringing those syllables into that particular order, but I bet the thought of doing it sucks.

I bet for some people it sparks anger. Why should you have to do that? Why should you have to renounce your faith when it has nothing, absolutely nothing, to do with the quality of work you’re able to do as an employee.

Maybe sadness. Why should you have to give up something that’s important to you? Why are they making you choose between something your soul connects with and the survival of having a paycheck?

Yeah, I get it. It’s “different” in my case… It’s just hair…

But at the same time, IT’S JUST HAIR.

Why can’t I keep it the way I want? Why do I have to give up an expression of myself, my soul, just to prove that no, I’m not a crazy drug user or whatever unfounded stereotype someone else is brainwashed into believing, especially when simple, easy compromises could be made to negate ALL of the perceived issues it would cause?

What is the company sacrificing for me to make this trade fair?

What core identity, fundamental belief, is it sacrificing to show it cares as much about me as I do about my potential job?

A paycheck? It’s sacrificing money to make me conform? Yeah… ok. I can go with that. I get that in exchange for changing my hair I would be receiving compensation in the form of money.

Is money worth giving up the fulfillment of being able to say, “Yes, I believe in Jesus?”

Would anyone else give that up, or something else just as core value? What if it was, “You can work here as long as you’re not gay?”

And that’s where I have the biggest problem. If it were anything else people would be understanding, but because it’s “just hair” it’s not allowed to be important to me. It can’t be something I have an attachment to, or a connection to. It can’t be something spiritual that I have a right to keep.

What’s more infuriating is the fact that I could work at a fast food chain and because it’s considered “lesser” work there are more leniencies in regards to appearance, but because I want to work at a hospital me being myself is suddenly something that needs to be altered or hidden or eradicated.

At the time my brother called me I was very much in an irrationally angry and hurt state.

I told him I didn’t want to talk about it, but he pressed.

Jon: It’s how our society works.
Me: Well, fuck our society.

What’s really bad is I don’t even know if my hair was or wasn’t the cause of my denial. It was mostly just a built up fantasy inside of my head of a bunch of supervisors sitting around a table and saying, “Nope. She’s obviously a delinquent. Just look at that hair.” And the only reason I was thinking about it like that was because of the conversation I had with my classmate.

Originally I had thought it was because I was very obviously over qualified for the job. I mean, come on… Patient transporting when I’m EKG certified, working on phlebotomy, about to be CNA working towards PCT… The only thing I could have done more to keep me from getting the job was walking in with a flashing, “I’m not going to stay in this position long” sign above my head.

But no, the conversation with my classmate totally overrode all of that rational. The only reason I was denied was because of my hair. They lied about the accommodations and simply didn’t like me even though both interviews had gone well. They’re all lying soulless jerks. Rawr.

The conversation with my brother ended on not such a good note. He sent me a text message not long after our conversation saying how it had felt like a slap in the face to him. He had just sent me money to pay for my classes and here I was throwing it away because I refused to dye my hair.

Bitch, I had just said on the phone that I knew I would do what I had to do, but that I hadn’t had time to process through the emotions and that I was angry and didn’t want to talk about it.

If you want to pick and choose what parts of the conversation you hear at least remember the goddamn facts of it and recognize that whatever hurt feelings you have are your own fault since you didn’t leave it alone when I told you to leave it alone.

I felt betrayed and guilty. I’m not the only one invested in my schooling anymore. That makes me want to do my best. But I’m not the only one invested in my schooling, so now I feel like I have to do what makes him happy. I feel like I “owe” it to him to give up my hair because that’s what he wants.

While we were on the phone he tried to relate to me by saying how he hates having to flip his septum piercing up when he goes and works with the color guard at the high school he volunteers at.

I mentioned how he had been dishonest about his piercing and that he was playing a dangerous game, which he was obviously ok with playing. He hadn’t been told he had to take the piercing out in order to have the job. He had flipped the piercing up before the interview and pretended like it didn’t exist.

That’s fine. That’s how he wants to play it. But it wasn’t fair of him to use that as an example of him “sacrificing” because he didn’t sacrifice. He lied and kept something that is important to him. So really the moral here is I should lie. I should hide my hair in a head wrap preemptively. At least that’s what he’s saying his actions would be if he were in my situation.

I didn’t have it in me to do much the rest of Friday. I applied to some jobs eventually. Only three. One is a Central Service Tech job at a surgical center not far from where I live. I wouldn’t mind interviewing for it. Another is a pharmacy stock position with the hospital. That one doesn’t seem so bad either, but with how I got so far with the interview process for them to deny me with no reason given, I’m sort of burned out on the hospital right now.

I thought a long time about the conversation with my brother. I didn’t want him to feel like I was throwing away anything because I wasn’t. What made everything so painful was the knowledge that if push came to shove I would, indeed, relinquish my hair. That I wouldn’t stand true to myself. I would conform. I would bend, but in my head, it wasn’t bending, it was breaking. And I would do it even as I hated every second, even as every morning I would be reminded by the mirror that I had abandoned myself. He felt hurt and betrayed even though ultimately I would do whatever I needed to do.

What do you do with that? I said, “If I have to, I’ll do the thing you want me to do.” And he still felt hurt. He still felt like I slapped him in the face. How was I supposed to succeed in that situation? I didn’t, and still don’t, understand other than to say, “It’s Jon and he’s always going to be a double-edged sword.”

Saturday morning, while I was drinking my coffee, I came up with what may be a compromise I’m ok with.

I’ll keep applying for jobs. That choice was never really an option. I’ll keep my purple hair while I do it. If, by the time I finish my phlebotomy class, 5 weeks from now, I haven’t been able to land anything, then I will dye my hair back.

And even then, I might wait a month while I finish out my PCT course and see if I can get a phlebotomy position with my hair the way it is. I think I like that idea better. I can’t apply for phlebotomy jobs yet, so I want to give myself a chance in that area before giving up my hair.

So, yeah, nine weeks. Nine weeks to find someone who sees me as a person rather than a stereotype. Nine weeks to find a company who understands that IT’S JUST HAIR and that I would be beyond grateful to be allowed to remain true to myself.

Having found that compromise I felt a bit better. My thoughts turned to the job search, though. I’ve been seriously looking for a job since mid-February. So a month I guess? Two interviews, and a call back I shouldn’t have passed up. So does that count as three?

Are those good numbers? Am I not trying hard enough? Should I still be reaching for low hanging fruit or stay aimed at the direction I want to go in? How do you know when you’re making the right choices? Is there something I should be doing differently?

Blarg.

I paid bills on Friday, too. I’m broke. Like, “I can’t go grocery shopping until Warren pays rent” level of broke. Yeah… and with no future income in sight at the moment. It makes my stomach tight like I’m preparing for a massive uppercut that I know is going to suck no matter how prepared I am for it. It makes me wrap my arms around my stomach to think about how I can’t buy anything. Not conditioner or body wash. Not the cheese slices for breakfast.

This was what I was trying to avoid by searching for jobs early. I didn’t want to be in this situation. But I’m here. So I guess the best thing I can do is understand the emotions I feel and do the best I can to change my situation.

I went to the dojo Saturday. Jiujitsu was first, then Muay Thai. I thought about not staying for the second class. I did, though, and I’m glad I did even though right now I’m incredibly sore.

I hung around after class, stretching on the mat while some of the guys talked. We all ended up in sort of a pow-wow circle, sitting and relaxing while we chatted. It was nice. I feel like I’m starting to form actual friendships with some of them, which you would think trying to choke each other out all the time would mean we’re like BFFs or something. Since a few of them are friends on my Facebook they mentioned my stripe and EKG certification. It made me feel like I was part of the group.

I didn’t drink enough water while I was at the dojo so by the time I got home I had a killer headache. I ate, drank water, then curled up in bed and suffered for a while. It wasn’t until around 8 pm that I started feeling ok enough to do much of anything. I cooked homemade beef stir fry. It came out awesome.

I went back to bed not long after cleaning up the kitchen and running the dishwasher.

So, of course, I’m not ok that when I went down to the kitchen this morning there are dirty dishes in the sink.

Blah. That’s a conversation I don’t want to have. But I know I need to because it’s only going to get worse for me internally if I don’t.

I don’t feel like doing anything today. I’m supposed to go start cleaning out the storage unit but the bitch in me doesn’t want to do it. Why should I be the only one to do anything when he can’t even be bothered to put his dirty dishes in the dishwasher?

I know if I don’t start moving boxes back to the apartment that Tuesday is going to epically suck. I don’t want to spend my whole day moving stuff. I want it to be the furniture and that’s it.

I feel like that’s a victim mentality. “Why me? Why can’t it be fair?”

I don’t know what to do to change those feelings. And I don’t know how to make it fair when the other person doesn’t care enough to change.

I might have a way to make my work area more conducive to studying. It’s something I’m looking into at least, being able to work better at home. Since home is becoming a point of stress for me I’m not sure how helpful any changes are actually going to be.

I want things to change, but I don’t want to put in any more effort because it feels like the effort I have put in is pointless. It hasn’t gotten me anywhere so why keep trying?

Because I said I would. Because if I don’t try than things literally won’t change. I have to keep going to the dojo if I want to keep getting healthier. I have to keep applying for jobs if I want the chance to actually have one. I need to keep going to class so I can keep improving which will let me apply for better jobs. And I need to keep telling Warren that he’s being unkind to me because he is. His apathy affects more than just him and it will kill our relationship if he doesn’t change.

I have to accept that he might not change, and if he doesn’t then that’s on him. I’ve been doing my part. I’ve tried to come up with compromises that work for both of us. I’m not a doormat. I’m not his mom. He’s not my man child.

This moment is temporary. It will change.