October 9, 2009

I have the flu and have been asleep since Sunday.  I know I at times have long periods where I have been away from my blog, but I have genuinely wanted to blog almost every day today, just for something to do, when I have so much FREE TIME but can’t seem to get to that upright-sitting position in front of the computer. 

Until now.

And now I’m spent.


Worth Remembering

October 3, 2009

I’ve been thinking a lot about Sondra and my grandpa this week.  I think it all started when Sondra wasn’t at my sister’s bridal shower, and the realization that Ab won’t be able to dance with Grandpa at her wedding.  I can’t pretend to imagine what that’s like for my sister, or my mom.  Absolutely awful, I suppose.  Sometimes, given enough contemplation and thought and silence, things just hit you. 

Brad Paisley, featuring Dolly Parton, When I Get Where I’m Going


This Drink is On Me

October 3, 2009

This past week has been pretty busy, especially in the evenings.  I even went out to dinner last night with my co-workers to give my boss a going-away party.  Pretty proud of myself — even at the end of a long week when all I wanted to do was go home and relax and take care of this cold I think I am getting, I just acted as if I was going to have/having a fabulous time and ended up enjoying myself.

It’s amazing how much different my idea of a good time is now than in the past (like in college or even for years after).  The bar scene brings on severe PTSD symptoms and I’m really not into that.  Going to one rattles me for weeks and it’s just not worth it to me, especially when I can’t enjoy it while I am there. 

Drinking is also not that important to me anymore, when it definitely used to be.  When we went out last night, everyone was either drunk or getting drunk — I was the only sober person, sipping my herbal tea while everyone else was slamming beer, amaretto sours, margaritas, and mojitos. 

A lot of the issue with drinking is that it is quacking expensive.  And so is eating out, I really had no idea since we never ever go out to eat, other than pizza or Chinese, every great once in awhile, Mexican.  I’d say we eat out less than once a month.

Imagine my shock when my tab for last night was $24 with tip.  What the quack, mate?  All I ordered was a piece of grilled chicken, a baked potato, a side Caesar, and hot tea.  $24, seriously?

The craziness is that I could have made the exact thing at home for less than five bucks.  Maybe around $2-3.  Really makes me not want to eat out even more than I already don’t.  Really makes me glad I wasn’t drinking at the restaurant, as well, because I don’t think you can get a cocktail in there for less than $5.

But, I did have a pretty good time.  My co-workers were very entertaining, I took a lot of pictures with our secretary’s camera, and spent some time with the smokers on the outdoor deck.  It was really pretty nice and I didn’t even really feel bad when I left at 9:00 p.m. and they were “just getting started” (yikes!) drinking.  Wowza.  I had heard before that our MH team was full of party animals, but I didn’t know to what extent…singing scary-oke and dancing on the bar at a local hotspot right by my house. 

And I heard some seriously crazy stories about past bar hopping and official conferences where giving the bartender your bra so that you can dance on the bar sounded tame.  Soooo glad those days are over for me!

A song that really spoke to me and both QoB when I was getting over some serious crazy times toward the end of college and shortly thereafter.  Appreciate every day I’m alive.

Alison Krauss and Brad Paisley, Whiskey Lullaby


Love a Jewelry Give-Away!

October 1, 2009
One of my dearest favoritest blogs is Down and Out Chic.  Christina has a darling Etsy shop that features, you guessed it, homemade.jewelry.  I am a complete sucker for earrings and hairpins.  I mean, seriously, I can wear a new pair almost every day for three weeks and not have to repeat.  Lovely.

Through Down and Out Chic, I found the very fabulous blog, The Cottage Cheese, and she is doing a giveaway of Christina’s things. 

My favorite pieces are all of the mum earrings and some of the hairpins.  A few of my favorite selections below:

Persian Red Dangle

Persian Red Dangle


Light Conversation -- A Purple Hairpin Duo

Light Conversation -- A Purple Hairpin Duo

Forever Love hairpins

Forever Love hairpins


Plans to “Act As If”

October 1, 2009

QoB receives these motivational essays at her work, from Dr. Alan Zimmerman, affectionally nicknamed Dr. Z by Madre.  I generally don’t have much use for things like this, but QoB sends me the ones that seem to be really applicable to my life, almost like he is speaking to me.  She sent me this week’s Tuesday Tip, and it particularly resonated with me:

In tough times, your financial health takes a beating.  But so does your emotional health … if you’re not careful.  Well, I’ve got some good news for you. You don’t have to be miserable and depressed.  You don’t have to gripe and groan.  And you don’t have to live “under your circumstances.”  You can be victorious … no matter what your circumstances … if you do three things.

1.  DECIDE to have a good day.

2.  ACT like it’s a good day. 

3.  PLAN a good day.

I totally fall into the trap of not doing this, even when thinking that I likely could make it a practice in my everyday life.  Sometimes I spend a lot of time caught up with the little things in my environment that I control to be just.so and think that should equate happiness. 

The distinct problem with this train of thought, way of being, is that I generally end up disappointed because one thing or another didn’t work out.  Dr. Love and I had a fairly deep discussion last night about my feelings of aimlessness, my lack of meaningful (to me) goals, my lack of real passion for anything. 

We concluded that my current purpose in life is to survive, and, frankly, it has been for some time.  I have used this over and over again, just trying to make it through the day with a steady, non-reactive mood, only to find myself coming up short at the end of the day.  Yes, I am surviving, and having “survived” now for some time, it seems to be time to kick my life into gear and start living

Of course, this isn’t a new issue.  It’s something I have pondered throughout the last ten years or so, generally whenever I’m feeling pretty good about how things are going.  Kind of like, “Ok, I’m surviving all right.  Now time to make my life even better and put.myself.out.there.”

Ok, double, quadruple scary for me.  I have serious trust issues, a somewhat antisocial personality, and, if you listen to QoB, I’m an angry person in my interactions with the world.  As I told QoB, just because I hate everyone does not mean I am an angry person.  Things that make ya go “hmmm.”

A lot of times I will watch myself and my behavior and marvel at how far I have come.  Of course, there are a lot of times where I’m thinking


Stuck in the same old rut again.

I think I have done rather well in the last year to open myself up to new people and possibilities.  I get along rather well with people at work, even if I am constantly evolving and changing in order to not come across as weak or overly emotional.  As Dr. Love (and even a few of my inmates) say, I put up a tough front, but I actually have the potential to be nice and friendly, when I want to be.

Here’s to “acting as if” I’m happy, seeing if it will stick around, making some new goals, and striving for purpose.

Here, here.

This song makes me think of camping, even though we never sing it because I don’t really know the words. 

John Denver, Country Roads


Sneaking Suspicion

September 18, 2009

When I saw my new pdoc last month, I was having some problems with a mixed episode.  She prescribed more Geodon and gave me Trazadone for sleep.  The Trazadone didn’t do anything for me, but the Geodon seemed to bring me out of my funk. 

I started to feel better and better.  Then I started to feel giddy and silly.  And I started spending too much money, blabbing on and on about nothing, pressured speech, flight of ideas, racing thoughts, dramatically decreased need for sleep.  And became very obsessed with cleaning, doing laundry, keeping the kitchen clean.  I mean, cleaning and working on things in the morning from the time I am waking up (around 3:00 a.m.) until I go to work (I leave the house at 8:15 a.m.). 

At first, it was great.  I thought, “Oh finally, I feel good and am getting some stuff accomplished.”  Things have been super-slammed at work, spending all my time working on one case when I have tons of other people to work on as well, including four people from the mental health pod leaving next month, the pod that I am supposed to concentrate on.  So I’ve been running around with a chicken like my head cut off at work, but really seem to be getting things done.  I’ve worked a lot of nine or ten hour days, leaving me totally screwed by the end of the week, as we are not allowed to have overtime.  It’s just been really busy and I am handling it really well, I think, and my supervisors are very pleased. 

Yesterday, however, I hit a brick wall.  Actually, it may have started the day before.  Racing thoughts became faster, intrusive, all over the place.  I had a hard time focusing and getting things finished, leaving a bunch of unfinished business in my wake.  I started running out of things to work on at home, leaving me to sit and watch my head spin ’round and ’round in the wee hours of the morning, not tired at all, completely feeling rested and like I need to DO something.  My body feels itchy and crawly and jumpy.  I may or may not be hearing things that aren’t there and seeing little shadows out of the corner of my eye.  My mind is driving me crazy and it just won’t.shut.up. 

Then it dawned on me.  Hello mania, goodbye mixed episode!  Sure I’ll see you around, keep in touch!

For the most part, I’m still feeling really good, really hyped up and euphoric.  My sense of self is probably blown out of proportion — feeling like I can take on anything, do anything, that I’m the best, the smartest, the most beautiful.  All of those negative feelings about myself are gone gone gone and I don’t even recognize the person I was a month ago. 

Because it.never.happened, ok?  I will always be happy, always have high self-esteem, always have enough energy to do it all, with an extra six hours in my day that I’m not WASTING sleeping.

Insight is a fucking bitch.

Dido, Isobel


Take a Little Time

September 17, 2009

Wow, I was getting in such a good routine of blogging in the mornings, and now it’s been almost a week!  What the quack??? to borrow a much-loved new expression from QoB.  😀

I think the reason for the lack of blogging is that the only real down-time I have is in the mornings, and I am really enjoying drinking my coffee, smoking, and listening to the iPod on the back porch, looking out into my beautiful yard.  That, and I have been working at being super-productive in the mornings, so that I can come home in the evenings and just chill, spend good quality time with Dr. Love, and get to bed at a decent time so that I can get up in the a.m. and do it all over again.  I’ve managed to get about two weeks of laundry totally done, have cleaned the kitchen every a.m. for about the last ten days (Dr. Love needed a break, I thought, and I was feeling guilty that I was pitching in on that project so infrequently), and have been picking up the house and keeping it nice and clean.

I love that feeling when everything in the house and on the chore-list is “just-so.”  No, not any control issues here or OCD issues here.  😀

I think we are headed out to the lake again this weekend.  The weather is supposed to be nice, except for some rain overnight on Saturday.  As QoB says, though, that’s all part of camping!  Dr. Love and I are really starting to get the hang of this whole camping thing and we’re LOVING it.  It’s so nice and relaxing to just get away, from the responsibilities at the house, from work, from the computer and the phone and just spend quality time together. 

QoB and Big Dog took their camper out to the lake last night, so I am sure we will be seeing them this weekend.  That will be nice for us and for them, because we don’t get to spend tons of quality time together, with them being so busy with the shops and, really, with Dr. Love and I being so busy just doing our thing.  Big Dog and QoB definitely need a break at this point…the busy seasons are ending and they’ve both been working seven days a week, just non-stop craziness. 

I think it’s kind of weird how everybody (including myself, sometimes) feels bad for the Big Dog because he has to work so much, but QoB is really working her ass off, too.  Granted, she is only working four 8’s a week at her regular job, but she’s putting in hours at the shops almost every evening, whether it is at home doing books/inventory/purchasing/research or at the shop slinging bait, plus she works all weekend from either the house or the shop.  All I have to say is, Madre, you’re amazing and a true inspiration for who I want to be.  MTLI.

So, last weekend Dr. Love and I worked at the shop on Saturday and Sunday, trying to help get stuff done.  We planted a crap-ton of plants for propogation (sp?) for the spring season and put most of them in the correct spots.  I do think Young21, their part-time garden store employee, has a lot of organizing and heavy lifting to do when he recovers from being ill, however.  At least we made some headway, though.  Then on Sunday, QoB and I forced (and I do mean forced) Big Dog to take off at 1:00 and go do something fun.  We ran the shops without a hitch, absolutely no problems.  I love it when a plan comes together.  Now Dr. Love, Big Dog, and I just need to find a way to give QoB a day off.  And by day off, I mean that she would likely spend it working on stuff at the house, because she just can’t.sit.still.  😀

I was thinking of the movie, Beaches — and I really don’t understand why it has such a low rating, because that’s one of the greatest.movies.of.all.time — for some reason this morning and really wanted to hear some Bette Midler

Without further adieu, I give you, one of my favorite celebs, Bette (and I couldn’t decide on just one song, and would love to hear if you have a favorite).  😀

Bette Midler, From a Distance

Bette Midler, The Rose

Bette Midler, Wind Beneath My Wings — and you know, people make fun of this song all the time, but I quackin’ love it, so there.  🙂