Day 176: Recuperating

After shaking up my very necessarily rigid sleep schedule, I was worried that I wouldn’t be able to get back on it.  Sleep is such an f’d up thing for me…insomnia at night, delayed sleep syndrome, and then narcolepsy during the day.  Taking Trazodone to sleep, Gabapentin to stay asleep, and Nuvigil to stay awake.  Why is something that should be so normal and natural such a difficult thing for me?  What is wrong with my brain that causes all of this?  And, dammit, isn’t 1 sleep disorder enough?  Why do I have to have 3?  And why does 1 bad night have to throw my pattern off for days?  I just had to get that out of my system or I’d be standing out in the yard in the middle of the night screaming it loudly to the universe…and waking up my neighbors.  I didn’t fall asleep until 1:30am Friday morning even though I was exhausted and couldn’t wake up at my regular time Friday morning so I was late for work and had to drag myself through the day.  Then I had to go buy more bandaging materials for Rick after work.  I swore I’d fall asleep early but didn’t until after 12:30am.  And I slept through my alarm this morning so I didn’t wake up until after 11:30.  The good news is that I feel so much better than I did yesterday.  The bad news is that my sleep schedule is still screwed up.  I’ll be working on it for a while just trying to get back in the right pattern, but I’m rested right now.  Rick is doing better.  It was a little touch and go yesterday because he was bleeding quite a bit but after we got his leg cleaned up and rebandaged the bleeding slowed down a lot.  He is feeling stronger today.  He just couldn’t understand why he was feeling so weak Thursday and yesterday so I broke it down for him…he lost 3 – 4 pints of blood and that’s 1/4 – 1/3 of all the blood in his system.  What I don’t understand is why he didn’t receive any blood while at the hospital.  Oh well, he’s on the mend after all that he went through and that’s all that matters.  All he has to do now is get through the cardiac ablation on Tuesday.  I dread it though because I’ll be apologizing to nurses right and left the entire time he’s there.  He is the absolute worst patient.  But I love him so I’ll do whatever I need to do for him just like he does for me.  We’re a pretty good team.

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Day 175: I Only Thought That I Knew What Chaos Was

Well, I missed a day of my 365-day blogging challenge but there was a reason for it.  My poor husband who is on 2 heavy duty blood thinners…Plavix and Xarelto…lacerated his inner thigh at 1:00am yesterday morning and began to bleed out.  I was sound asleep after taking Trazodone for my insomnia and gabapentin for my delayed sleep phase syndrome and it took him almost 10 minutes to rouse me because he wouldn’t come into the bedroom and track blood on the carpet.  When I got to the hallway, there was a trail of blood leading into the kitchen.  Nothing could have prepared me for what was in the kitchen…giant pools of blood and bloody gauze and bandages everywhere.  By the time I’d get him bandaged, it would be soaked through again.  Finally, he called 911 while I got dressed and the EMT rig and a fire truck arrived 5 minutes later…thank God they are just around the corner.  We had already cleaned up so much blood and there was already that much more on the floor again.  They took 1 look and got him on the stretcher and in their rig and headed to Parkland which is the county hospital here in Dallas as well as a top-rated trauma hospital.  The 3 firemen actually stayed there and cleaned up all the blood even though I told them that they didn’t need to do it.  1 of them told me that they didn’t have anywhere to be and kept cleaning.  Bless their hearts and I don’t mean that in the snarky way that it’s usually used here in Texas.  While they were doing that, I finished dressing and got our menagerie situated.  They left and I headed to Parkland.  By the time I turned off of our street, the EMTs were already pulling back into the fire station because Parkland is only about 10 minutes away from us.  I got to Parkland and hurried inside.  They took me down to his hallway and pointed me in the right direction.  I finally found my way through the maze and found him being pumped full of liquids…3 bags…because his blood pressure was dangerously low because he’d lost around 2 liters of blood.  They slowed the blood flow but couldn’t stop it completely because they didn’t want to stitch it because of the possibility of infection.  After he’d received all of the fluids, they removed the dressing, cleaned both of his legs and feet with betadine then bandaged him again.  We got home around 6:30am…on my birthday.  Happy birthday to me!  He is still super weak and he called me earlier to tell me it’s full on bleeding again…not like yesterday but steady.  So I’m going to get more first aid supplies on the way home and see if we can get this slowed down.  If not, we’re going back to the ER.  He’s being a little more bullheaded about because he has a shoot tomorrow and wants to be there to supervise his photographers and customer service people.  So I might have to knock him out and drag him to my car and drive him to the ER!  We aren’t going to play around with this.  I’m tired and really grumpy and he’s weak so I think I could take him if necessary.  The thing that’s so scary to me is that it wasn’t a big or deep laceration yet he was bleeding out!  Fortunately, he has a cardiac ablation scheduled next Tuesday for his A-fib and he has to stop taking the Plavix today so that might help.  Anyway, I have to get to the pharmacy and get a lot more gauze, pads, and ACE bandages so I’m going to close now so I can go take care of Rick.  Wish us luck!

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Day 174: Chaos

I realized today that I am more comfortable when life is chaotic.  I also realized that, with a few exceptions, I’ve never really known anything but chaos.  My childhood was chaotic because of my parents’ relationship.  My 20’s were chaotic because of my abusive marriage.  My 30’s were chaotic because I was just beginning to do the things that most people do in their teens and 20’s.  It was also chaotic because if it wasn’t, I would find a way to cause chaos.  I didn’t know how to have a healthy romantic relationship because my models were my parents, other relatives with screwed up relationships, and my own marriage and what was I going to do with that?  When I was in a relationship I would usually end up sabotaging it.  And it wasn’t because I wanted to, it was just what I did.  I hurt some really nice guys and I regret that.  I did some really stupid things, as well.  I got involved with men that wanted to control me and I let them which I still find to be strange because I am a strong-willed person.  I didn’t want to be my mother…a stay at home housewife and mother that had almost no outside interests, that had better have dinner on the table by the time my dad was home, was cheated on, knew it, and stayed, and was depressed but did nothing about it.  As she got older, she began to change, became more outspoken and independent, and stood up to my dad.  And, as a result, their marriage and relationship actually improved.  But I didn’t want to be in my late 50’s and just learning how to be in a relationship.  I dated one man right after my separation and it was very organic, not forced, not rushed into and I had a momentary glimpse into a real, healthy relationship.  But, as with most of my choices, there was an impediment.  He’d just gotten out of the Air Force and wanted to feel free so he worked the renaissance fairs all across the country.  He asked me to go with him but was so bound to my family that I just couldn’t do it.  We’d see each other every few months and we’d write and call…we still had an amazing connection and I didn’t do anything to sabotage it because I didn’t have to…the circumstances sabotaged it.  Eventually, we realized that it was never going to work because he couldn’t stay in one place and I could only stay in one place.  When I met Rick, my husband, there were a few things that stood in our way…he was going through a vicious divorce that was sucking the life out of him, we lived about 45 minutes away from each other, his kids hated me because their mother told them that I was the reason the marriage broke up even though I didn’t know Rick until the divorce was in its second year because she was more interested in hurting him than actually divorcing him, and all of that and more made him a bit gun shy when it came to a relationship.  But he sent me letters and cards and flowers because deep down, he wanted a relationship.  When things were settling down, I started acting out…conjuring up the chaos because now the relationship was becoming viable.  I would push his buttons, do things that pissed him off, etc…  One night, I had really pushed those buttons and then started an argument…for no reason other than things were so good and I didn’t know how to deal with that.  I kept pushing and I got right up in his face and pushed some more.  He looked me in the eye and said, “I am not going to hit you to make you feel better about what you did”.  It was like a punch to the gut.  So much became clear that night.  He saw so deeply into my chaotic mind and latched onto the main reason that I had been a raging sabotaging bitch spreading chaos wherever I went…I didn’t know how to be loved or how to return that love because love and chaos were so entwined.  And Paul, my first husband, had helped to slip something else into the mix…abuse and pain.  I am a very intelligent, empathic person that has always looked deep within herself but I was completely blind to all of this.  How many other people are out there doing the exact same thing and will never have someone call them on their bullshit so they just go through life sabotaging everything that feels too safe and comfortable?  Yes, I’m sure there are hundreds of self-help books out there that in some way touch on this subject but if these are like me, they don’t even know that they need the book.  Or, better yet, therapy.  Who is going to make them understand this?  I was very fortunate to have someone that made me see it and I am so glad because I honestly cannot see my life without Rick in it.  We’ve been married for a little over 23 years.  We seldom argue, as long as we don’t talk about politics.  We make each other a better person.  Outwardly, we have very little in common.  He’s 12 years older than me and when I was in first grade, he was in Vietnam.  When I was 12, he was starting his business.  When I started college, he was starting a family.  We basically are from two different generations.  I’m liberal, he’s conservative.  He doesn’t like the same music as I do.  I’m Catholic and a little witchy while he’s more agnostic.  We do like similar types of TV shows and movies.  I read, he doesn’t.  I have hobbies, he gardens.  I could go on for another page about our differences but what it boils down to is that we genuinely like each other as well as love each other.  I enjoy our conversations and time together.  We do have one thing in common and that’s animals…we both love animals.  My mother told me…after he and I married and I moved all of my critters into the house with us and he was totally fine with it…that I had married a good man and that I was so fortunate to have found someone that loved animals as much I did.  Our current critter count is 6 cats and 3 dogs, all of which are inside-outside pets…we have an acre of land with a fence so the dogs are always in the yard when their out and the cats don’t tend to wander either.  And, of course, I have my strays and ferals that I care for at work and at home.  And he doesn’t give me any grief over the money that I spend to feed them. Anyway, back to chaos.  I still have issues with it but it’s also has a positive side…my job is chaotic and I deal with it all very calmly because chaos is part of who I am.  I’ve made friends with it and we peacefully coexist…most days.

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Day 173: When We Really Want Something

When we decide that we want something…I mean REALLY want something…how hard are we willing to work for it?  I’m talking about wanting something truly life-changing.  The life-changing thing that I want more than I can express is to be a published author.  But as much as I want it, I have not put the work into it that I need to in order to actually have it.  I am a total procrastinator.  I work too late.  I am a slave to my sleep disorders and the meds that I take to control them.  My ADHD and OCD get in the way and sabotage me.  I let myself become exhausted and run down to the point that I end up becoming ill.  I could go on and on but you get the idea.  So, basically, I need to want it enough to take better care of myself and stay healthy.  That means I have to stop working so late.  Get more sleep.  Eat better.  Lose some weight.  Figure out some exercises that I can do that won’t exacerbate my RA which has been really giving me problems over the last few months.  Meditate.  Set some boundaries.  And actually, work on Rapture…sit my butt down in the chair and just do it.  I’m still going to be tired or not feeling well whether I write or not.  I have to be stronger and tougher than all of these impediments.  There are people with much worse issues than I have that have accomplished great things in spite of what they are going through.  So, I just need to woman up and get to work.  That’s how bad I really want it.               

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Day 172: Beautiful Spring Day

It is gorgeous out there today after all the major storms that came through the area last night and early this morning.  Lot’s of thunder, lightning, rain, wind, and hail, which caused a lot of damage in some areas.  That means it is officially springtime in Texas.  So, in exchange for being able to enjoy beautiful weather, we also get to hear warning sirens in the middle of the night and scary weather reports telling us to take shelter away from exterior walls and windows and in bathtubs covered with mattresses.  And then to make it even better, we have to speak with insurance adjusters about the damage done to our cars and roofs by the hail and wind.  And fallen trees need to be removed, fences replaced, and debris cleaned up.  The best part is, within a day or two of everything being put back together, another storm can come along and tear it all up again.  But we get to enjoy sunny, warm days for a couple of months before the heat begins to build to almost intolerable levels.  And even then we will have the storms.  Actually, we can have storms in the fall and dead of winter as well.  But that’s the price we pay for being Texans.  Life is never boring here even though we sometimes wish that it were.  I think that no matter where you live, there is some variant of this.  It’s just life.  It’s all just life and we have to learn to live with it.  

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Day 171: Tired but ThingsWere Accomplished

There is still more to do but at least I got those shelves from hell assembled and put them where I wanted them.  I finally abandoned (tore them into little pieces) the pictographs that were more confusing than helpful.  I just pulled up the picture on Amazon of the assembled shelves and figured it out that way.  So much easier!  Then I got the table cleared off and wrestled the shelves on top of it.  It’s about 90% full now and I think I’m going to call it done for today.  It opened up a lot of space in other areas of the room but there’s more that I want to get moved so I’ll either work on it during the evenings or get back on it next weekend.  The thing that’s causing the biggest issue if the small flat screen TV that I had previously used for my PS4 and Xbox360.  I moved it in here to use as a monitor for my Chromebook.  Actually, ASUS came out with a very small computer…I’m talking about 5″ long and 2″ wide.  It plugs into a TV and it becomes a Chrome computer.  It has quite a bit of memory, 1 USB port, and Bluetooth so you can use a wireless keyboard and mouse and a speaker.  But I’m going to have to figure out where I can stash it when it’s not in use because it’s sitting on the area when I write in my notebooks and color.  But I am exhausted because I didn’t go to sleep until around 3:00am and got up at 8:30am.  I fed my ferals and jumped right on finishing the shelves.  I stopped for about 30 minutes to eat lunch then came right back in here.  I had thought about taking a nap but decided that I wanted to get this project finished.  So, I’m pretty pleased with it and very tired.  I think I’m going to go out and feed my critters, take a shower, do a little more organizing in here, then go to bed early.  Mondays are bad enough but without sleep, they are miserable.  So, I’m off to feed and water my little colony.  Out of all of them, only 2 will come to me…Blackie and Miss Grey.  They are very sweet.  I’m glad that the weather is warming up because I worried about all of them when it was really cold.  Miss Grey might be related to our Smurf.  Poor thing, he’s still a little dopey because of the pain pills they sent home with him after he was neutered on Friday.  He seems to be doing pretty well, thankfully.  He’s a sweetheart.  Well, kitty time.  And I’m working toward my bedtime!    

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Day 170: Self-Care Day and Getting Some Things Done

I have napped today, played on my computer, watched movies, had a wonderful lunch that Rick prepared, and loved on my sweet kitty Smurf who was neutered yesterday. It’s been a rainy warm day so it was perfect for taking it easy. I have done laundry, sorted my medications for the next 2 weeks, called in refills, and I’m in the process of putting together a set of shelves for my Magical Writing Haven. The shelves seem to be taking forever because they’re a bit complicated…not difficult, just a lot of pieces and you have to do this before you do that and if you don’t, you have to take some of it apart and the pictographs are not that helpful. I thought IKEA’s were bad but they don’t hold a candle to these. But I’ve got it figured out now so I’m just dealing with all the pieces. I want to finish them tonight but it’s 10:30 and I don’t wasn’t to stay up too late because it will throw off my bedtime tomorrow night and stay up too late, which will make Monday miserable. So I’m going to get back to the shelves and get as much done as I can before I crash. They’re a pain but I’ll be so glad when they’re finished because I have plans for them. See you tomorrow.

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Day 169: Life As We Know It

The majority of the things that we know about life, we learned the hard way.  Some people learn these things early and some learn slowly over time.  But we all learn it at some point in our lives.  Even though my home life was somewhat chaotic when I was growing up, I was still somewhat sheltered from the world.  Church every Sunday, big family gatherings on a regular basis, small town, small neighborhood, etc…  We were exposed to some things…all 4 of my uncles on my mom’s side were functional alcoholics, 1 of my aunt’s husbands was very cruel, another’s had a nervous breakdown and had fits of rage, another uncle was killed in an accident right after he returned from Vietnam, and so on and so forth.  I guess family craziness was okay but not outside craziness.  Even when I was old enough to raise…18…I didn’t.  The people that I went out with were all friends from.  Having a couple of drinks with dinner was as much hell as we usually raised.  Same thing when I went away to college except I was with people that I didn’t go to church with but were still fairly low key.  We drank a little more but that was about it.  I married for the 1st time when I was just shy of my 24th birthday.  And my education began in full shortly thereafter.  Suddenly, I was a married adult with adult responsibilities, bill, problems, and a husband that became more irrationally angry and violent with each day that passed.  I had a secret to keep…I was a victim of domestic abuse.  Every single day I learned a little more.  Finally, I left and went out on my own for the very 1st time.  There was more learning and I morphed into a very different person because of everything that I had learned the hard way.  I wasn’t finished learning either.  I’ll never be finished.  Hopefully, however, the lessons will become a bit easier but every time I think that I have learned all that I need to know, another lesson comes along…some easy, some more difficult.  It never stops so you just have to learn to roll with each new lesson.  There is always a reason for each 1.  That’s just how life works.   

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Day 168: Completion

A friend on Facebook posted a question asking what our word for 2019 was and how we were making it happen and what progress we’d made.  I had never thought about a word for the year but stopped to do so.  The first word that came to mind was “completion” because that is not my strong suit.  I procrastinate or ignore or forget or change my mind or head off in a new direction or get frustrated or get bored, etc…  I get so excited when I begin a project and I make all of these elaborate plans and tell myself that this is the project I’ve been dreaming of…the one that I will bring to fruition.  And that rarely happens.  My ADHD and OCD don’t aid in my quest for completion.  So, now that I’ve identified my word for 2019, I need to figure out my game plan and how to avoid falling into old patterns.  And that will take some work!  I guess it’s time to pull out a new Micromovements wheel and start filling in the blanks and build my process from the ground up.  And finishing that will be my first act of completion.  Hopefully, it will be the first of many things I complete.    

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Day 167: Spring and the Weather

IT’S SPRING!  Even though we had a mild winter, I am thrilled that it’s over.  As I’ve said before, the biggest problem with winter here in Texas is the fact that it can be 20° one day and the next it will be 60° and the day after that, it will be 80°.  But, hold on, a day later, or less, the temperature will drop 50°.  Seriously, you come to work wearing clothing for a warm spring-like day and when 5:00pm rolls around, the wind is blowing 30mph from the north and it’s winter again.  I don’t mind the cold but it’s difficult to get acclimated to it when it’s not consistently cold.  You’ve probably heard the joke about if you don’t like the weather in Texas, just wait a minute.  Only, it’s not a joke and it’s not funny.  Personally, my very favorite season is fall.  It usually starts off hot but within a couple of weeks, it’s not too bad.  The evenings and mornings are usually cool and the daytime temperatures are warmer but still a relief from the summer temperatures that we suffered through and survived.  Again.  I love the leaves changing and the way the sunlight angle has changed.  We still have storms but they don’t usually include the tornado warnings and watches that we have during spring and summer.  But, because it is Texas, they can.  We have violent storms during the spring and summer even when there’s no tornado involved.  The watches and warnings used to terrify me but one year, during August, every night for almost two weeks, there would be warning sirens going off after 10:00pm.  I lived alone in my little house with all my dogs and my cat, Fred, and at first, I’d stay up until things calmed down.  Eventually, I realized that there was nothing I could do about a tornado even if it did hit, so I’d just go to sleep listening to the wind, thunder, rain, hail, and sirens blasting away.  During that two week period, we had 1 major tornado that destroyed a large portion of one neighborhood, skipped over my parents’ house and then destroyed another neighborhood.  There was major flooding and a lot of wind damage.  On the day that happened, I was at work…listening to sirens and watching the sky turn green, which means hail and tornadoes are likely…when I noticed that there were things blowing west on one side of the street and east on the other side.  Not good.  And in Texas, if a storm approaches from the east…get ready for some nasty weather.  It’s never good when storms come from that direction.  I got caught in rush hour traffic 3 different times when there were tornadoes on the ground and I’ve never been more afraid than I was then.  One time I was on an overpass in my little Honda Accord Hatchback and the wind was insane and, I realized, it was actually pushing my car sideways toward the edge of the overpass.  That was fun.  Another time, I was stuck in traffic and the hail was huge and pounding my car.  I couldn’t even hear the radio where they had been talking about multiple tornadoes being on the ground.  I was freaking out and even crying.  I had one of the old Motorola box cell phones that actually had a cord going from the box to a regular sized handset and I called my boyfriend, my now husband, and tried to talk to him but because of the hail, neither of us could hear.  Once again, I survived but my car looked like someone had taken a hammer to it.  It’s spring so it’s time to start thinking about storms again.  Yea!  Our house is down in a little valley and it’s survived for 63 years so I feel pretty safe there.  We have a lot of huge old trees though and their roots run shallow because 2″ down you hit clay and we’ve lost a couple during storms so I worry about one crashing through the roof.  But, what can you do?  Work is a different story…we have absolutely nowhere to go if a tornado hits.  So, I freak out a little when the weather gets really bad while I’m here.  I’m going next door to the RaceTrac service station and get in their freezer.  That’s the only plan I have so it will have to do.  Well, that’s enough fun for now.  I’m going home to either create or veg.  Either way, there are no storms predicted for tonight so I’m good.            

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