I can already tell the new neurologist is working up towards an "it's all in your head psychiatric diagnosis". I can smell it.
First she tells me that Topamax isn't used for nerve pain. Funny that, doctor, considering it was the only thing that saved me when none of the other drugs worked, a low dose of Tomapax cured the horrible burning sensation and was the only thing that stopped me from killing myself. She says it can cause burning (which is true), but it never fixes it. For me, it took burning, of the "I've spilled boiling water on myself" magnitude and turned it into a "tingling, mild sunburn" sensation.
And I'm not alone:Move over Lyrica and Cymbalta? Could Topamax (Topiramate) Be More Effective in Fibromyalgia?
Then she asked me if I was bipolar (no, that's the OTHER sister), and what my official (mental) diagnoses were. And she did ask me if I'd had an MRI, but looked at mine from six years ago, and said it was fine so I didn't need another one. Um...I was fine six years ago, so yeah, I would hope that damn thing was fine. This problem came up 18 months ago or so, and I never had it before, so exactly how does a scan from six years ago, when I was fine and had no trouble, show that I'm fine now?
If you come in with a broken leg, and they look at an x-ray from pre-broken leg, that has nothing to do with your leg right now, does it? Duh. So how does an MRI from years before the problem have anything to do with now? Hmmmmmm.....
I'm supposed to go in for a memory test, if I can find a place that covers it with my insurance, but I already know how this will go. It will say my memory is fine, because (as I TRIED TO EXPLAIN) if you compare my memory to Joe Schmoe, it IS fine. Now, if you could compare my memory to me of two or four years ago, it would be shockingly different. I compensated for my visual processing problems by having a scary memory for certain kinds of detail, not as scary as some people's I know, but pretty damn scary overall. And now that is gone. You know, the kind of person who understands that pie is always 3.1415927 (technically I've rounded that up) and never just 3.14, or who knew every poem from the Hobbit, LoTR, and Dark is Rising Series by heart, just because. I can't find my way around town visually or by spatial sense like a normal person, so I have to compensate by MEMORIZING THE DIRECTIONS, I know that from my front door to the dr I:
exit apt door, turn right, elevator left, pick correct floor, turn right to exit, turn right on sidewalk and follow to end of block, turn right and follow to end of block, cross street cattycorner-left, follow straight to metro entrance (stairs down), which turns left, escalator down right, entrance stiles on right, platform train on right, switch trains by exit train go left, u-turn go downstairs, platform train right (making sure to pick correct train line), making sure to exit correct side of station when leaving subway system, go forward until you reach the correct street, turn left, go forward until you reach the destination on left.
Obviously, I also have the train lines, the streets I turn on, the final address, and a few names of places I pass to look out for so that I know I'm still going the right direction and haven't gone to far. In many places, I can't do "shortcuts" because I'll get hopelessly lost. It's not as bad in the city because many of them are laid out neatly with numbered and lettered streets, but I can't just find my way back by sensing directions--I have very little direction sense. And having gone some where, I then have to MEMORIZE THE ROUTE BACK as if it's a whole new set of directions, because it is.
I do it with people too. If I need to recall later what someone looks like, I'm doing it like I'm writing up a crime witness report in my head, tall/short, fat/thin, dirty blond hair, tattoo of butterfly on left wrist or whatever. The constant need for insane levels of meticulous memory details are necessary because I can't just "visualize" certain things. Maybe I couldn't draw up a make or model of a car (or hell, even what color it was, if I didn't "memorize" it in list form), but I might be able to give you the license plate instead. It was easier for me to memorize a license plate number than for me to try and visually recall a blue 4-door sedan.
Only now it's gone. I'm living in this hash blur, where everything is vague and fuzzy, like a cloud or a dream. Like a very, very bad dream. But when they try and run your standard memory tests it mostly comes up pretty normal. I guess by most standards it would BE normal, after all, most people don't need to memorize a list of directions for every place they go, or a list description for all the people they know, or phone and license numbers for everything around them. They just know "that's so and so's car" because they see it and recognize, or they look over and say "Oh hi so-and-so!" But none of you people were ever familiar to me, most of you never will be, I just don't see you often enough, or your features are not distinct enough to register past the prosopagnosia (faceblindness).
I'm losing the whole world around me, and I feel like I'm losing myself with it. I don't even want to go outside anymore. It's become this big scary place full of STUFF.
As far as the pain meds fiasco is going, it turns out my shrink is now a suboxone prescriber (when did THAT happen?) so when I told him the nonsense between my pain doctor and my new GP, he offered to put me on that. Huh. Sounds like a plan, better than battling it out with the new GP anyway. For those not keeping track, I can't get pain meds from pain management mostly because I have an addiction history, so legally they are kind of tied up. How we had it before was they consulted with my old GP, who wrote for my meds. It all came from one dr to one pharmacy (it's tramadol for crying out loud, we're not exactly talking morphine here) and everyone was happy. At least, until my GP and I parted ways over a couple of items which had nothing to do with my pain management.
My new GP started in on the thing that my old GP originally was like "I don't want to prescribe pain meds...that's what pain management is for!!" Only this one is worse, she's like, "I WON'T prescribe them, not even under consult." Basically tough titties. And tramadol isn't exactly easy to come by. As I told my shrink, I can do one of two things. It's not my pain dr's fault that laws make it so tough on her and she can't prescribe meds to me, so I can either shop around until I find a reasonable GP, which by the way, having an addiction makes me feel less of an addict than being forced through this nonsense for TRAMADOL pfft, and do all this bullshit and be treated like shit, or, I can make a phone call and in thirty minutes (maybe the first time might be hard, since I don't know anyone who deals in it off the bat), I could go out and find some heroin. Because, as I said, people who use pain pills don't want tramadol, they want oxys, or heroin, or something heavy like that. I've never heard of anyone going, "hey dude, I really want some tramadol." The real stupidity of this is, I DON'T EVEN HAVE AN ADDICTION TO PAIN PILLS. Which of course everyone knows, it's just if you have ANY addiction history, they treat you like shit.
They actually made me sign a pledge form the last time I got my tramadol, that said, "I will not use illegal drugs." I almost peed myself laughing, like, what next, a chastity pledge? Do I get a promise ring? Because I had an addiction history, you think having me SIGN A FORM for my prescription will change that? I told my shrink that if addictions were that easy, I would have signed a form and stuck one to my front door years ago and been cured. Hallelujah! Sign this pledge and be free! Hell, I've got a sign on my junk food cabinet and I CAN'T STOP EATING ICE CREAM even though I'm lactose intolerant. Who comes up with this shit, anyway?
So he writes for suboxone only he forgets to put his DEA number on the rx, and the snooty pharmacist (NOT my regular one) gives me the eyeball (because, yeah, I'm going to fake a suboxone rx *eyeroll back*) when I offered his business card. "I can only call the number on the prescription." Yes, okay, that's fine, gotcha. But she didn't have to say it in that tone of voice, you know, the tone of voice that says I obviously spend my time faking expensive laminate-type clinic business cards so I can turn in suspicious prescriptions with my horrible druggie self, which is all people who take suboxone are, right? Not people who also may have chronic pain.
pffttttt Bitch. It's the cane, makes me grumpy. One day it's going to make me so grumpy I'm going to freak the fuck out and someone is going to eat it and shit splinters for the rest of their life. Two doctors appointments, one shitty, one good, but I was exhausted and did not need a snooty new pharmacist to give me "eyeball" and "tone" at the end of my day.
Fri, Jan. 16th, 2015, 09:16 pm
Flash of an image, my hand, a knife, blood. My hand, stabbing, the knife, buried into something, right to left, buried into me, my flesh, maybe an arm, maybe a leg, mine, though, my flesh, my blood. Flash of an image, the background faded and blue, washed out, the blood dark and red, the knife no more than a flash, a handle, red oozing.
Flash of a knife...
I sit up. It wasn't a thought. It was a no-thought, almost a command, a thought without thinking, a reflex, the swat of a hand against a mosquito, the reaching for an itch before you even realize the itch is there. My feet have swung across the bed, ready to slide down its length, to take the steps propelling me forward into the kitchen, more towards the sink than any real cutlery, but the impulse is there.
Where am I going?
I shake myself. Am I dreaming? I saw myself do it, not standing outside myself, but from within my own skin, it was if I had done it, and the impetus was there, the command like a dress rehearsal, and already I'd taken one single step and then stopped. My heart hammered a few times against my ribs, as if it insisted on taking a few more steps forward without me, bursting forth. What am I doing? What am I about to do?
I about to do? Why
would I be about to do this? What mad impulse spawned this? I blink, and stop, and blink, and blink again, reality grinding itself in bright lights and an almost ringing in my ears, my heart still thumping. No blood, no images, no commands. Just me standing alone, a brief echo of some horrible deed averted, like a spell that has been miscast.
Sometimes I wonder, would my friends still love me if I did something shocking. I talk a big game, but really, I guard myself, truly guard myself, over and over a thousand times, checking every motion, every motive, every thought in waking and sleeping.
It's normal, you know. It's normal, for many of us, at some point in our lives, to have a period of time where we are convinced that we will do shocking and terrible things if left unchecked. Some people are overcome by the anxiety of this, afraid to meet with others, some afraid to leave their houses even. They visit therapists, afraid to reveal the depths of the horrors they consider, who tell them reassuringly how very normal they are. You won't, you know. Do those things.
Then again, most of you don't have several buried selves lying dormant and near-strangled underneath the who-you-are. I don't need them anymore, therefore they are not. I could no more call them forth than I can control the tides.
But sometimes they come, often in the spaces between worlds, after a long movie, at the end of a engrossing novel -- if it speaks to them anyway. And, like a jealous lover having been denied, they are often vengeful.
That's one theory anyway.
The other is simply that I'm missing something, some primal thing that keeps me from stopping my most basic impulse controls in check. And that, for whatever reason, my most basic primal need is self-termination. It's not that I don't like myself, because I do. But I have this other thing, within, a demonic terminus, if you will.
I think, perhaps, both are true, and the realities are the same. Guarded, day and night, night at day, forever on vigil, eternal and true. I cannot control the tides, but I can watch them, forever if I must, until I can't.
It scares me a little. It is also a great comfort...
...and that scares me too.
When someone asks me where I am "from", I will always say Earth, with my race being human. If they press hard for my ethnicity, I might, in a confiding voice, admit to being part Fremen with a grandparent from Arrakis, but that it's a family secret not to be discussed further.
I will learn to tithe to myself just as much as I tithe to charity and others. Every month, I will buy a beautiful collectible book, just to savor the pages, something fabulous to wear, and check out some exciting new place to eat, preferably with a friend.
When men tell me to smile, I will continue telling them, "I'm neither your dog nor your slave, so I don't take orders from you." If they ask me, "what can I do to make you smile?" my response will be, "get arrested for harassment. I promise you to laugh my ass off."
If someone calls me a "rude bitch/cunt/whatever", or for that matter any name-calling on the street, rather than letting it get to me, I'm going to hold my head high, smile, and say "thank you". After all, if I'm making enemies that means I'm having an impact. Not everyone in this world is going to like me, and I am not bound by opinion of strangers.Let sleeping dogs lie and beware of men who call you baby.
I'm not your baby, honey, sweetie, sista, or boo. I'm also not a lady.
When someone says to me, "hey pretty lady" I'm going to give them the following response:
"Do you know how rude that is? Do you know what that says to me about you as a person? That says you are the kind of person who judges people by how they look. You've made a snap decision about the person I am from my height, weight, hair color, skin color, the face my parent's gave me, the type of clothes I can afford, none of this stuff has anything to do with who I am as a person. All this shit is just external. How would you like that if I did that to you? [Give them the once-over and response. Eight times out of ten it's "How would you like it if I came up to you and said, "Hey black man in the cheap shoes, how's it going?" For whatever reason, it's always the men in the cheap shoes/clothes. Well dressed men usually start with the even more obnoxious "hey baby".] It's not a nice thing when the world judges you by outward appearances, is it? You want to change the world, how things are done, you gotta start with yourself."
Alternatively, if I'm in a hurry, I'll just say, "it's the penis that makes me so pretty, every woman should have one."
Tip to the ladies, for persistent men in bars, the best tactic I've found so far is to stare at them, smile brilliantly, and say, "are you flirting with me? That's ADORABLE!" And then cock your head to one side e.g. look at them like you'd watch a puppy playing with a two-year-old, continuing to stare as they talk and slowly run out of steam. Usually within 20-30 seconds, even the most persistent, drunkest idiot, will sort of mumble off. You have to perfect the "receptionist stare" for this to really be effective. And when they ask for you number, just say no or shake your head. Really. Without excuses.
I will start enforcing my genderqueer status. Yes, I am a cisfemale. No, I'm not trans-anything. I have no desire to change my body or become male, I have merely renounced the idea of gender roles for myself.
I am fully aware that there are "girly girls" and "manly men" and I acknowledge that many of the folks who most support being genderqueer deny that people can be born inherently sexualized. I have my own opinions and believe in the full spectrum. There are some people born very feminine, and some very masculine, and usually the feminine people are biological female, and usually the masculine people are biological male. I, personally, "think like a man" but have the body of a woman, and I've come to be happy with this (despite my one complaint, and that is I wish I was as strong as a man, even though I don't want to look like one).
It's actually less controversial for me to say I'm genderqueer than to say "I have the body of a woman but think like a man." When I say that, what I mean is I am competitive in the way that men are, rather than the way that women are. I would rather fight than nurture. I socialize with people better in a typically masculine fashion. If someone were having a bad day, I would rather take them to a strip club than rub their back. I have learned to do both because society has made me, but the latter feels like an alien language. Most of the time I could care less about my hair other than having it be out of my face. I value being strong (love muscles and have wished for a washboard stomach all my life), fast, and tough rather than desirable to the opposite sex. I find girls mystifying and a little scary...make that alot scary.
Swimming, just do it.
Stretching, just do that too.
Getting out of bed. Damn, have to do that in order to do the previous two, don't I? Beginning to see the problem here.
The part of me that yearned for death, it burned as a star,
bright as the sun,
dark as desert wings.
I set forth on an errand of mercy,
I looked for God,
with the earnest faith of a child.
I found Ye not, in trinket nor in icon,
though the Mystery whispered in shadow, and
the smile glimmered in flame.
I found Ye not, in smoke,
neither herb nor poison taken.
I cast my suffering upon the waters, and
Lo' it was released from me.
I begged for forgiveness, and ye, I was shriven.
I hungered and food was given.
The Glory all abounds me, but without,
for without me,
One cannot be reborn
When an immortal soul is given.
On December 5th, in keeping with an obscure holiday tradition, DC will host its 3rd Annual Krampuslauf on H Street. According to certain ancient legends, St. Nicholas did not work alone, but had many helper attendants. The Krampus is a horned and hooved, satyr-like creature, whose responsibility was to pass out coal to the naughty girls and boys, among other punishments. For truly bad children, he would carry them off for his X-mas dinner!
Traditionally, Krampuslauf takes place on Dec 5th (the day before St. Nicholas Day). Revelers parade through the night, often in costume, carousing their way through the streets & warn attendant children to be nice.
Krampusnacht Schedule of Events:6pm: DC KRAMPUSNACHT 2014 RECEPTION at Gallery 0 on H Street
Krampus! Santa! Kids Activities! Door Prizes!
$10 suggested donation or unwrapped new child’s gift to support SANTA’s CAUSE DC
, which brings the spirit of the holidays to foster children in our area.
Get your photo taken with Krampus & Santa!
Fire Performances by Dance Afire and more!7pm: Release the Krampus! Charity Walk along H Street!
All participants must be in Krampus costume. There is a Facebook group
and sheet sign-up.9:30 – 11:30pm: KRAMPUS AFTERPARTY at GALLERY 0 on H
Come boogie down with the Krampus!
DJ and Dancing!
Annual “We are the World” Krampus Karaoke
*the majority of this event will occur OUTSIDE so dress appropriately!
$10 suggestion donation to SANTA’s CAUSE DC
, unwrapped child’s gift, volunteer or reception wristband
For more about the Krampus, the Wikipedia Entry.
Now, I'd planned to not follow the diet on Thanksgiving, but what I didn't plan for was to continue not following it since then. It seems that every day after I "must" have a piece of candy, or something breaded, or the Saturday event where I drank three sodas (two had alcohol added, one did not). I don't actually think I could have stayed as late as I did had I not imbibed those Red Bull & vodkas, although my wallet didn't thank me for it (seriously, $13 for an absolute & RB? That's strip club prices, wowsa. At least give me the rest of the Red Bull. Even a nudey bar would do that.)
Anyway, looks like if I want to do the Whole30-esque cleanse, I should probably start over. I'm still eating more stuff from scratch than before, and I think the best way to succeed for 30 days is to have more days in general that one cooks from scratch. Going from 0-100% is tough. From 40-100% is probably not so tough. So while I don't plan on starting over immediately, I think I will keep some healthy habits in place, or try to anyway, in preparation for a second run at it. It will probably be in the new year, not exactly a resolution, but definitely in January, after all of the holiday eating is over. Not that I can't do a baked ham replacing brown sugar with orange juice, but it's sort of a pain in the ass as it is. That and I don't want to forego stuffing entirely this season. There is a special place in my heart for the oh-so-salty, incredible processed StoveTop. Remnants of days when I lived below the poverty line and PizzaHut breadsticks constituted a meal (it was the cheapest thing on their menu).
In the meantime, I've got plenty enough to keep me busy around the house besides spending hours and hours in the kitchen. I've been timing things and I think online is really where the time flies off to...but I've allotted 3 hours total of kitchen time. That includes a couple 15-min. breaks where I sit off to the side, cleaning up before and after cooking (which I often do separately from cooking, this isn't 3 hours all at once by any means), and actual prep. One hour if I have to leave the house that day for an appointment or errands.
I think my New Year's Resolution is to learn how to budget my time in such a mannner that I can get this place decluttered and organized, as well as my life. I just don't have the energy I used to, and must cut back to things that are essential to me. I feel better when I cook everything from scratch, even if that means a meal takes an hour or so to prepare. I wouldn't be able to do it at all before I got these new pain patches, so I'm hoping they continue to work, and/or that this nerve block also proves beneficial. I'm ready for another cortisone injection in the ruptured disc as well. Yay more shots! (*eyeroll*)
I can't remember everything I ate yesterday. I know I polished off the last of a roasted chickpea snack in the wee hours of the night (what I consider Saturday night, even though it was technically Sunday morning). I like that my little produce delivery service has a few snacks I can eat.
I also made hummus for the first time in my life, and drank lots of tea.
Hummus came with cherry tomatoes, heirloom carrot sticks, red bell pepper, and a few thin slices of another pepper. I didn't feel particularly hungry until after I started eating. Then AgtOrange made popcorn, and, ravenous for butter, I made popcorn too. Although mine didn't have any butter, but I did cheat a little bit because it was maple and sea salt, and the maple is basically a processed sugar, even as I applied it more sparingly and threw about a third away. I sort of classify it along with honey and molasses. While they aren't technically cheating at the diet, they do mess with the spirit of the diet, so I try and keep those things to a minimum.
I finally cooked the pork tenderloin, after brining it with kosher saltwater, a splash of apple cider vinegar, and the blended remains of an apple. Yeah, that brine-water looked a bit like vomit, but it sure did make the pork taste delicious! I surrounded it with chunks of potato and a few carrots, covered in olive oil and rosemary, and threw the whole thing in the oven at 350 degrees. It was done in about an hour, with the last 15 minutes adding in the roasted garlic, and basting the top of the tenderloin with a mix of melted pork lard, caramelized onions, and granulated garlic. The potatoes still weren't quite done, so I upped the temperature of the oven and put them in for another twenty minutes while the meat rested on the counter.
It was all quite delicious.
That night I would find the remains of the blue Gatorade laying about, and drank the last three swallows before throwing out the bottle. The weird sweet taste is much less appealing now. But I bet yesterday's sugar, both the maple and the Gatorade, is the reason I am once again craving sweets like a fiend. The first few days of this diet, I was constantly eating fruit (which is fine). Then later, I didn't need them with such fierce intensity. Sugar causes sugar cravings, especially in those of us with reactive hypoglycemia. It also makes me tired, which obviously I don't need, and yet it's so hard to ignore.
I can't do all the things I want to do. I screwed up my doctor's appointment. Even so, I still can't get this house straight except by cramming things onto the couches so the maid can clean. No way will I have enough time to actually put things where they belong, or make a place for them to belong. I can't even read the amount of email I want, and whittle down that pile, or get to all of the news I want, or anything. Cleaning, cooking, emails/news, doctor's appointments and my reading project--those are all I want to get accomplished, but they are too much. This sucks.BREAKFAST:
Today I woke up, cleaned the kitchen, made coffee and had a cup with soy milk. Cut up a pineapple and had some of it. LUNCH:
The diet specifies no processed meats, which includes sausage, but just as honey is technically not a processed sugar, and yet it violates the spirit of the diet by affecting your body in close ways to table sugar, so too does my locally sourced sausage not violate the ideals of the diet, even if it contradicts the particulars. There are no preservatives and no nitrates in this sausage. There is only meat, spices, and perhaps some molasses. It's uncured and quite delicious. Someone on a farm actually made this, and then packed it in a not-very-commercial sealer and it came to live in my freezer.
I had sausage and farro, which includes celery and a little red bell pepper for veggies. I've also eaten a pear, and am now drinking water and thinking about sweet fruits (more pineapple maybe?) and also a nap.
Tonight we plan to order pho. The beef broth and bits are totally acceptable, it's only cellophane noodles I can't have. I'm going to attempt to cook some thin whole wheat spaghetti and try the pho broth with that. I'm also going to severely limit the amount of soybean paste I add (I'm kind of crazy about it) which is going to be the hard part for me, rather than the change in noodles. Overall I guess it's a vegetable slow day.
You can't win them all.
Sometimes I do things and even I don't know why. Thursday, Day 10 of 30 in my diet:
Went to my volunteer place, did stuff fairly as normal mostly sitting and making up cottons & cookers bags until the arthritis said "no". Sometimes I push for 100, which is probably twice what I should really do in one sitting. But I wasn't pushing this time, just doing it leisurely, and it seemed every time I sat down a client walked in, so I have no idea how many I really did. Not one-hundred.
Ate leftover rice & beans, plus earlier I'd gotten my Starbucks soy latte and a banana. A pretty good day. Then I went on a binge. And I have no idea why.
Partly it was because a friend showed up, saying he "missed me" which was part true and part bullshit. We hung out for a bit, and then ended up getting something. But I can't blame him.
This is the thing, the entire time, I didn't even want to do it. At least, up until the time we got started. Not at all. I think the diet helps with this. Why do I do shit I don't want to do? What I really wanted was to go home and relax, and yet it's like I have dumb ass compulsions sometimes. Like when you see something out of line in the grocery store and spend five minutes fixing it, and you don't work in the damn store. It was a complete and total OCD habit, not any craving, not any desire, more like the counting how many times I chewed my food thing I had as a kid. Some of my OCD habits have been very beneficial to me at work, but mostly they've been harmful to me in my personal life.
It could be worse. I had a compulsive suicide habit for a very long time when I was young. I'm just pretty bad at it, and most of the attempts were literally not thought out and just as impulsive. That's not a recipe for success. I'd just decide, "hey, weather's great, today would be a good day to die", or "gosh I hate rain, if I was dead I wouldn't have to deal with it." Shit that makes very little sense. It was a random thought, and a random habit, like nail chewing only with a slightly
harsher repercussion than raggy nails and fucked up cuticles. Or I'd do weird, dangerous things. Like, I'd be standing there and just do something, right then, right there. Which is why I monitor every action, every movement, every thought I have now at every moment of every day, and I'm always second guessing myself, and if you don't think that's fucking exhausting you don't have a clue. It's also why I grade myself so much harsher than anyone else. I have to be perfect now. Always. And who meets that criteria, really?
Lots of people have crazy thoughts, get really anxious because they go through a time in their life where they suddenly are worried that they are going to do something nuts out of the blue. And they develop this anxiety. "I'm worried because I'll be standing next to someone and I wonder what would happen if I just did xyz, and then I'm freaked out I might actually do it." The correct response is that no one actually does those things...except I'm the bonkers exception to this rule. Considering I've done things like, "hey, does antifreeze really taste sweet?" and "let's walk into traffic and see if this sports car's brakes are really that good", it's not exactly like involving another person in a way that could be really detrimental (okay, yes I realize that technically a car is involving another person) is that far different from things I've done in the past. I was a kid at this time; I actually made a game of it in middle school. Did it every single day for an entire school year--walked in front of traffic on the highway home...figured if they hit me it was the day that it was meant to happen.
So the bonkers self-harm addiction went from chronic suicide attempts as a kid, to things like cutting and/or other forms of self-harm that you couldn't see, but now it seems to be drugs. Or, maybe that happened after I decided to kill myself with drugs. That was a conscious decision actually. I'd taken some a couple of times in attempts, but there was a time in my life where I just said, "fuck it" quit my job, because a waitress in a shitty diner (shades of American Beauty) so I could have cash every day and no responsibility, and made the decision that I wanted to kill myself with drugs. I had literally had enough. Of life. Of the deaths. Of heartache. Of everything.
And boy, did I try.
The human body is remarkably resilient (and my liver and kidneys are apparently invincible, because they are both remarkably healthy). The psyche not so much. Even at my worst, I was still trying to talk to people about things like "love" and "hope" when I didn't have any. Also, the world is a very fucked up place indeed. I'd thought slavery was bad, but some of the nightmare shit from this world populated by the forgotten, the broken and discarded--some of the stories I heard still bother me. It's just a step a way, and yet so many people go on with their lives and have no fucking clue it even exists all around them.
I've done a lot of fucked up things in my life. Even to other people, sometimes because I had no choice, and sometimes because when you are trapped in the walls of your own pain you do shit like that. And heaven forbid someone try to help you, because it looks like an attack and you know to attack first is the best defense. I get that. And I know the horror that is out there.
If I spend the rest of my life atoning for the things I have done, even things that I had little say in, it will never be enough. If I could somehow turn around and be the Dalai Lama and Mother Theresa wrapped in one skin, it would not be enough. Not to me. Because for all the lives you help, if you help a thousand lives, it does not compensate for even one that you destroy. If you are a hero a thousand times, it does not negate that you were one time a villain. But I do wish I could stop fucking up, because even as I say that I know that what's inside of me, the pain and the PTSD, the monster that a life-long trauma person holds caged in their heart, does things that hurts the people around them. As much as I wish I didn't. As much as I would like to stop. As much as I am trying to stop.
With the meds. The therapy. The diet. The exercise. The meaningful work. As they say, right thinking, right speech, right doing. I try to be kind, to forgive, and I can forgive everyone but myself. That one still seems beyond me. And that's partly because I can't seem to change. If I could just do better....
Nothing works. None of it works. I've tried everything and even the doctors say that obsessive-compulsive disorder is really hard to treat. Although mine is more like impulsive-compulsive disorder. I made it work for me for so long. I found that I could push if I threw myself into projects, but that a steady nine-to-fiver was no good. If I switched departments, or picked anything I could immerse myself in completely, I could use my traits to my advantage, for good instead of harm, for a period of many weeks. But then you have to find a new project, or some other job, or it starts to grind, and when that happens, I started seeking outlets at home. It also helped if work took up everything, which made me quite the workaholic. I was always, always busy. At one point I held five jobs at the same time, slept in two shifts of four hours each. My "day off" was the day I only worked four hours. When I worked in the pharmacy I would come in on my days off and work for free, because then I could do the things that never got done during my regular time there, and didn't have to deal with patients or filling prescriptions ("it's my day off, I'm not officially here"). That, and I found looking for expired medications row after row and marking the ones that were close to be mindless and soothing (and quite necessary).
Now, with being disabled, my body doesn't let me do that anymore. I have way too much down time, and I can barely get "into" any project enough to really feel "at even keel." If my brain doesn't have something to do, it goes into a spin of boredom, depression, and generally unhealthy thoughts.
Having a self-harm addiction is even worse, especially as it manifests now in drugs. They keep trying to do traditional drug treatments, and those always make me worse. For one thing, my story is totally different, yet few people, including medical professionals, believe me at first. I never enjoyed this. It wasn't "at first it made me feel good, and then it didn't anymore". I always hated it, and persisted in doing it as I hated it, probably because I hated it. And inevitably, in any group therapy, it comes down to them saying, "if you continue to use, it will kill you." Um...yeah, let's talk about drugs for an hour and then you give me the reason why I use drugs, pound it home, and surround me with folks who have dealers on hand and can help me get drugs. This sounds like a totally winning recipe (not). When I've tried those groups and therapies, my use exploded, almost back to when I was seriously actively trying to kill myself. And this new doctor kept giving me drugs for addiction that didn't work, until he finally "got it" and now I'm on a vitamin supplement he recommended that seems to be helping, even though I have to buy it myself. Whatever it does, it blanks out some of the active running commentary, that constant sense of pressure for self-harm that lives in my head always. Too bad it doesn't stop random impulse as well. Maybe I should up it to twice a day at this strength (max dose).
There are days in which my miserable state really does make me wish I'd never been born. The two biggest things holding me here are a) what if reincarnation really does exist (the very idea of having to do this shit all over again just seems even worse that going on as things are), and b) that would just create even more misery in the people around me. So I'm stuck. But I wouldn't mind a direct meteor strike, or better yet, some last chance to do something good. Rescue a puppy from a burning building or something. Go treat Ebola. Having a good and honorable death has always seemed more important to me than a good life, or maybe I just realize that the latter simply didn't and isn't going to happen because of who I am inside, so I'll take the one that might still be possible.
While I was out I didn't eat much. Nothing Friday. Today so far I've had two apples, cheated and had a blue Gatorade, some carrot sticks with the hippie miso-ginger dressing, and now I've got brown rice done with chicken stock. And tea. I've got a bit of a sinus headache, and it's too much hassle to really cook. Fasting a little isn't going to hurt me anyway.
And that's Day 12 of 30 so far.
Well, so much for feeling better, but it was a good run I suppose.
Yesterday, Day 8BREAKFAST:
I had a taco, because there was plenty leftover (as well as plenty of rice & beans) and took my meds. But then my stomach started to hurt, and weirdly I felt dizzy, sick, my ears started ringing. I couldn't decide if it was my blood sugar, low from not having eaten as much as I normally would in the morning, or maybe just my meds and not having eaten quite enough beforehand.LUNCH:
Ate a bowl of the rice & beans, of course I WOULD choke while doing it (ugh), but did get that down and then took a nap before I had to head out to an appointment. I felt much better for the nap, even though it was shorter than I wanted, and the food. DINNER
: After the appointment, I bought a salad at a place I can eat. The dressing was a bit sweet, but I used it sparingly, and I've had it before, so there's no reason why later my stomach would start hurting again and much worse.
Before that, however, I would be tired, which caused me to head home early instead of hanging out with friends. It was only after I got home that the real stomachache began. Crawled into bed for a four-hour "nap" and woke up in pain. Had some more tea, including one that is a mild laxative (it usually takes 2-3 days drinking it in a row to have effect, which is a lot nicer than some of the nasty pills, even if you have deal with the bloated icky feeling in the meantime). For all of this wondrous diet and the amount of fiber I've been eating, my stomach has been pretty bound up and I can't think why. Maybe, again, it's the meds. Who the hell knows anymore. I was up for a couple hours in the night, made myself another taco and some herbal mint "tea" and went back to bed.
Today, Day 9
When I woke up I was automatically depressed, automatically angry, and before my eyes were opened I knew it was late in the day. I looked at the clock, 1630. Yeah, very late. The whole day gone and I've done nothing but be in bed, a guarantee for a shitty mood. AgtOrange's philosophy is "if you slept all day it's because you were tired." Well, I'm always tired, so what? And what's more, I still couldn't get up. I'm still exhausted, and my stomach still hurts. I got as far as a bottle of water and my first, pre-food meds, before he came home.(BREAKFAST)
He was the one who scrambled me some eggs, so that I could have my meds, only I didn't even manage to do that. I fell back into a doze, and now I might need to eat some more before I can take my "morning meds" at probably 2100 by the time I eat again. And then wait a couple of hours, eat a last time, take my night meds, and go to bed. Yippee! What a day; what a waste. I'd had planned to do so much, and just threw it out the window, and it just sucks. And, since I have other things going on tomorrow, I'm going to have to delay until Friday. I'm going to be rushed to keep up, I just don't know how I will manage now. As usual.
Stupid fucking body has betrayed me yet again.
I'll probably have leftovers today and tomorrow. And I probably won't blog tomorrow.
I woke up today and realized I'd been in love with a voice, the memory of a ghost, for almost as long as I can remember. Whose song and cadence, whose rhythm has soothed my heart in shadow through every trial I step.
A voice I will never hear.
The voice of a ghost, of a memory, of a dream.
I knew that making tacos from scratch, what used to be a quick fix dinner, would be quite a trial, but I had no idea the exhaustion and pain in store for me. I found myself talking out loud, giving myself pep talks like "you can do this Jade, almost done, just brown the meat now, just a little more cleanup, we're in the home stretch...."What a day.
Steel-cut oats, with a banana for the sweetener and some cinnamon, a pinch of nutmeg. I'm really getting used to having things be less sweet. I barely missed the brown sugar and/or honey and/or dried fruit I used to glob in my oatmeal.
Started off the day with plum oolong tea. Yes it's a flavored tea ("natural plum flavoring"). So sue me. I drank it straight, two cups worth.LUNCH:
Finished off that tiny bit of stir-fry while I made my own taco spice, since I couldn't use the premade packets anymore. Have a small jar of the stuff now, probably good for another two dinners. It tastes pretty good, we discovered, and leaves more meat flavor shining through.DINNER:
AgtOrange came home while I was still pressing tortillas, specifically homemade whole-wheat and masa harina tortillas from scratch. There is nothing I hate making more than tortillas except raviolis. I'm glad I have a press now, which normally sits in a drawer. But it's time consuming, painful to my hands, back, and feet, and I'm not that fond of authentic tortillas. These turned out "okay". They frankly taste like you'd imagine whole-wheat tortillas would taste. They aren't terrible, but they are definitely health food.
I can't eat beef, which is why these tacos are bison, and I had a couple ounces of shiitake mushroom left, so I minced them really find and put them in with the meat. The nice thing about bison is you don't have to drain the meat. For awhile we were getting ground bison so lean you actually had to add fat to the pan so it wouldn't stick. Bison-mushroom = mmm, mmm, good.
Used my organic baby spring greens & spinach mix, the one I was supposed to make into salads all this week but only did once or twice, as the lettuce for these tacos. But what really took up my time and effort was a home made salsa, because obviously taco sauce was out. It would have been better to have made this yesterday, it would have tasted better too (although it was might damn tasty as is), but I only thought it up last minute, forcing AgtOrange to pick up the stuff on the way home, since I needed cumin for the taco spice anyway.
We didn't end up reheating it, but theoretically I had yesterday's vegetarian "paella/Spanish rice" to go with it. Guess that makes tomorrow lunch easy, which is good since I have way too much other stuff to do, plus I'm exhausted.I'm now on my third taco (had two, then a break, now having another before I clean the kitchen *sob*. Then I'll probably have some of the pineapple. Also, just opened up this new package of delicious green tea. Even though it's late for caffeine, it's a short steep tea and I think I'm zonked enough it won't matter.