when moments last too long

I need a damn vacation in the worst way. Thank dog I only have a few hours left of today and then tomorrow before I hit the open road with Mom. My anxiety has been so crazy bad lately that I swear I can feel my hair growing.

Work has been stressful, totally. August is always hectic and it’s bleeding into September a bit. And while I’m enjoying the new office it is a bit isolated. It is finally all the way setup now, and that’s good.

It’s comfortable and very much me.

Part of my trouble is still physical pain. My shoulder is bothering me and now my hands are giving me problems. I’m fairly sure that the increased knitting isn’t helping those, but it is helping my anxiety so it’s worth it.

I’m still feeling way needier than I know I should. Because of my spectacularly shitty history with the male gender of the human species I keep waiting for the other shoe to drop. Like I expect him to just spontaneously decide to leave me.

He’s not going anywhere. Breathe. It’s going to be alright. He loves me.

He told me to repeat that to myself when I start to get worked up. That was quite possibly the most helpful thing anyone has said all day.

Tomorrow night he’s coming to have dinner at the house. I’m going to cook for us and he’ll get to meet Mom and the boys. I’m ridiculously excited about this.

To help with the excitement I’m eating cookies. If you’ll excuse me I need to go finish the package.

when the mentals strike

I like to think that I’m in a reasonably good place with my mental health recovery process. I’m still working at the same place I have been since the start of this, I get up and go to work every day, I pay my bills, I maintain relationships with my family and friends, and I do a reasonable job of taking care of myself. But some days, some days it really just doesn’t pay to chew through the fucking leather restraints.

Let me set the scene…

Monday is Humira injection day. It’s certainly not a terrible thing but I always have a small reaction at the injection site. It itches like holy hell for a little while and then the area stays kind of hard for another day. Not unbearable but not exciting either. Add to that a delightfully large and unpleasant cyst in a particularly unpleasant place. And rain. We’re getting enough rain right now that I’m honestly considering building an Ark.

Yesterday morning I started getting texts from my “friend” on campus at 6:30am saying he needed help with something. I put him off but FFS, I do not like starting my day by being harassed like that. Besides, I had a rotten data collection project to get done for my boss.

Then the emails from the particularly needy faculty member started flooding in and I just wanted to jump through the computer and give her a high five. In the forehead. With a metal folding chair.

So by the time I got to talk to Lancelot at lunch my anxiety was already through the motherfucking roof. I was hyper aware of every word, every nuance of tone of voice, all of the reactions to what I said. I hate being like that. HATE IT. Which of course meant that I “read” something that wasn’t there. And then he fell asleep because it was, after all, time for him to do so.

But I didn’t know that. And so I proceeded to commence with a spectacular freak out. Oh it was so ugly and embarrassing…

I was able to talk to him for a few minutes last night before he left for work and, as any sane and rational human being would have pointed out to my mental ass, he was confused as hell but not upset with me.

I absolutely hate being this way.

In other news…

The hat for Mom is coming along nicely. I have the ribbing and the garter section done, should start the pattern rows tonight. The problem is that the yarn she picked is dark blue and purple with black. It is definitely not something I can work on when the light is poor. I am hoping it will be done by the time we leave for vacation on Saturday. Not that I think she needs a wool hat just yet, more just that I’d like to finish it.

killing time, putting in my time, nothing but time on my hands

I finally got a call from the oncologist’s office on Friday, but not the call I wanted. The nurse was letting me know that the doc I was scheduled to see was going on a leave of absence and they’re bumping my appointment from Thursday to Friday. Not horrible, but still.

Friday night I did get to go take a blown glass ornament class which was beyond amazing.

the ones on the far left were mine

I managed to get 12 ornaments successfully made and had a hell of a lot of fun doing it.

Yesterday I finished putting together my fused glass 3D Christmas tree.

amazing, yes?

And I finished a shawl I’ve been working on that I had planned to wear to a play I was going to head out to see today.

I get by with a little help from Garth

But then this morning was the time change and I got up and started doing stuff and that was great but when it came time to get ready to head out I just couldn’t do it. I was honestly afraid to leave the house. While this isn’t unheard of for me, it sure as hell hasn’t happened in a good long time. Rather than beat myself up I decided to just be gentle and take care of myself today.

Now if you’ll excuse me, I’m going to see what other appropriate mischief I can get myself into while wearing pjs.

nothing to see here, keep moving

Still no call from the oncologist’s office about an earlier appointment. I’m just sort of resigned to the fact that I won’t get in before November 9th. And you know what? That’s ok. I haven’t had any more attacks or flares or whatever the hell you want to call the pain that this damn thing causes when it decides to be a problem. Totally ok.

I’m going about the business of living, because I am alive and because this is what I do. One of my mantras is “fall down seven times, get up eight.” I just don’t know how to quit.

I rock the panda thing, yo

We had an amazing Halloween party at work. My panda partner in crime and I had matching panda pajama costumes and our hallway won the decorating contest. Because honestly, what rocks harder than pandas with Canvas emblems on their butts?

I am trying to prepare for what I think is an inevitable surgery. Mom and I talked last night and nearly everything I would need access to is on the top floor of the house – except an ample supply of knitting projects. So I picked out enough yarn for 5 (6 maybe?) projects last night along with the necessary patterns. Tonight I’ll gather the needles and notions I need for each and get them packaged up for myself. I do like a good plan.

I have a finished shawl at home right now that needs to be blocked. I’m hoping to get that done this weekend as well as the glass tree. Keeping myself occupied with creative projects definitely helps keep my mind off of all the worst-case scenarios. And the total bonus is that I’ll end up with all kinds of pretty bits. Winner, winner, chicken friend steak dinner.

let me distract all of us with some pictures, eh?

I still haven’t heard anything from the oncologist so Mom has been doing her best to keep me busy. She’s done a great job. And so have the boys. Nothing like little balls of fluff to keep you distracted.

handsome orange kitties sleeping on my bed
baton competition on Saturday meant lots of knitting time for me between the girls’ performances
we must check out this counter mama, much important
“but moooooom! we gotta chase this bug!”
3D fused glass tree, some assembly required (and still needed)
pumpkin carving
Yoda Cat
weirdest aunt ever

This afternoon I have an appointment with my therapist which is good. I just wish I would hear something soon. As Tom Petty once said, the waiting is the hardest part.

remember that one time when I thought I had a virus but really my body was fighting off some kind of wicked cyst thing? yeah, good times

I really should have listened to my mom last Monday and gone to the ER when I was writhing around praying for death. I’d have been a whole week closer to having all of this nonsense behind me. Let me explain.

I don’t do being sick well, we’ve established that. But I recognize patterns and I learn. So when I started getting that awful stomach cramp thing again at 5:30 Sunday morning, I paid attention. By 8am it was obvious that it was not getting better and so I was getting to the ER.

Blood pressure through the roof, duh. Temp up a little, duh. Serious pain when touched, duh.

The rotten ass ER doc was just positive I had a kidney infection and just needed an antibiotic, but they’d do a CT scan just in case. That lead to an ultrasound because there was a “shadow” on the scan. Oh, did I mention the Dilaudid? That’s some nice stuff right there.

Anyway, nothing wrong with my kidneys but how about an ovarian cyst as a consolation prize? WHAT?!

Today I’ve gone to two other doctors, my regular and a GYN and now I know that the cyst is 6.5cm, looks sketchy so it could be cancerous, my liver looks kind of weird too, and regardless of what actually is going on with the ovary that little sucker needs to come out.

My next stop will be with a gynecological oncologist. I’m actually waiting for that call right now.

So yeah, nothing but excitement around these parts right now.

karaoke

When we went to the conference in July there was karaoke as one of the evening events. I wasn’t quite drunk enough to be comfortable getting up in front of a bar full of strangers and singing, although later that same night I did some crazy dancing in front of strangers. Anyway, it’s been bothering me. My excuse that night, aside from a lack of sufficient moonshine, was that I couldn’t think of The Right Song. And of course since then I’ve thought of about a thousand.

I’ve only actually done karaoke once, at a tiny country bar with my second husband. I’m pretty sure I sang “I Will Survive” by Gloria Gaynor. It’s a great song. The one above by Pink is too. And so is “I Am Waking Up Today” by Bowling for Soup, and “Into the Mystic” by Van Morrison, and pretty much anything by Flogging Molly.

Way back I actually could and did sing, quite well. I was in choir at school and loved it. I sang constantly. When I was diagnosed with bipolar and started taking lithium I lost my pitch. Can’t carry a tune in a bucket these days. Pretty well the only time I sing is when I’m alone, in the car or the shower. I’m just way too self-conscious about the way I sound.

But I shouldn’t be. I sound the way I sound. I’m good at lots of things, I don’t have to be good at everything.

So next time the opportunity to go out and do karaoke presents itself I have every intention of raising my glass.