Monday, August 25, 2014

Damaged Superhero

Remember when I admitted that I wasn't a superhero?  It doesn't seem like that long ago but honestly, it was ages ago because I don't remember making myself believe that.  So, here I've been ... trying to fight drama and save the world one call at a time, one hour of overtime at a time.  Yes, I still seem to think that I am superwoman or Batgirl (hee hee I first typed Bathgirl) and keep pushing myself forward.  Onward and Upward!  Don't stop or you won't be able to get back up!

I have to learn to knock that crap off.

My superhero cape is ripped, my magical superhero powers are malfunctioning, and I think my super cool superhero unitard is stained.  Long story short?  I am a damaged superhero.  Or, I'm just not one and I need to quit the act and accept my fate. 

I'm still trying to be everything for everyone.  I didn't learn my lesson.  Will I ever?  Looking back at my life and knowing there is only one word people have ever used to describe me, stubborn, I am going to say ... No.  I don't think I'll ever learn. 

I'm still scared to death of ... death.  But, I'm scared of not having control.  So I keep pushing myself to the limit which could push me back into being really sick, which could push me close to that D-word.  And yet, I still don't learn my lesson.

I'll admit it.  I think I am mentally screwed up after typing that paragraph. 

Even superheroes have flaws, if you think about it.   Maybe that makes me a perfect candidate.  Oooh, maybe I'll get some crazy superpower of eternal life.  Oh wait ... I don't want that.  Can you imagine?  I'd have to be around forever and honestly, I don't think anyone ever really wants that.  It's not all that it seems. 

I'm getting sick.  Not sure if it's just going to be a run of the mill cold or flu or if it is something completely different related to the bastard disease that I will have forever known as Wegener's.   All I know is my ears are full of pressure, my throat feels thick, my chest is extremely tight, my body aches and feels incredibly fatigued.  Stay home you say?  Well ... if it's just a cold, I'm not calling in sick. 

When you get struck down with cancer and Wegener's ... you don't call in sick for colds.  You learn that sick time is precious and valuable and needs to be saved so that when your remission ends and you're sick again ... you have time on the books to pay the bills.   Colds, headaches, etc ... those all become ineligible reasons to use sick time. 

I'll wipe down and keep my germs to myself, so no one will worry about catching whatever I am getting.  I'm smart.  I cover my mouth when I cough, I use sanitizer.  But colds happen and if  I was sick every time I had one, there would be nothing left when something big happens. 

Maybe it's another part of my OCD.  The fear of not having enough sick time.   Whatever it is ... I think I'm finally admitting that I am a busted up broken superhero who is mentally fucked up. 

Saturday, August 23, 2014

Happiness is an inside job

My dear readers, how easy it would be for me to open this page up and dump out everything that's inside my head right now.  It would essentially be a complete and total word vomit because no good would come from it.  Oh sure, I'd be purging  my brain of all those bad thoughts, you say.  But, it wouldn't do me any good to vocalize them because ... to vocalize them is to give them life.  I have decided they don't deserve that power.

I made a decision towards the end of my shift yesterday that I was going to choose happiness.  I'm not sure what made me step back and look at the negative things from a wider perspective but I am glad that it did.  I decided that I needed to rise above it, pulling myself from the cesspool of drama, wiping off the stains it leaves behind and moving away from it completely.  I don't even want to stand near the shores of that cesspool.  Why?  Well, cesspools of drama have  a way of suddenly brewing a tidal wave that sucks you in!  If you're standing near the shores of one yourself ... RUN AWAY!!!!

For those of you that know the type of environment I work in, you'll know what I am talking about.   Now, it's not specific to the type of job that I do, that's not it at all.  It's an epidemic of any office environment.  Lots of people cooped up in a room, lots of drama, differing personalities, men women, children (yes, adult children) and ... drama.  Oh I mentioned that already?  Well, it gets a dual mention!  It's bound to happen.  People weren't meant to be trapped in a cage among other people.  It either makes you too in love or too in hate with each other. 

I work a lot.  Shocker, I know.  I keep saying that I won't and then I do.  I think it is a sign of my OCD.  I never would have said I have OCD but I am admitting now that I am.  I need some semblance of control.  It's only been worse since the tri-diagnosis of health conditions sent me spiraling a little.   I wasn't in control then, but I am now.  How?  Because I can work as much as I need to and assure myself the bills will be handled.  I can work when I need extra money.  I am in control.  It's also all I know at times.  Sometimes, the dramatic, uncomfortable, high stress environment that can be my employment is as comforting to me as a much loved blanket.  I sink in, knowing I am good at what I do, my people trust me and I am needed.  As I write this, I realize how unhealthy that sounds.  But, it's my OCD, OK?  I am working through it as you work through your own issues. 

I went off course there.  Anyway, I work a lot.  I work a lot in the aforementioned not always positive environment and it can be damaging to ones positivity.  Alas, I learned that it is only damaging if I let it.  That's right, folks!  I am in charge of how I feel.  I am the one who decides to dwell on something, be angry by it, or ... walk away.  I've decided it would be in the best interest of myself, my health, and others, if I just walk away.  No.  Not walk away from my job!  How on earth could you think of such a thing?  I mean, walk away from the drama.  I don't want any part of it.  It's unhealthy! It's a domino effect.  It trickles into everything I do.  It affects my time away from work and ... that is such a precious rare time that I don't want to let anything affect that.  SO ... it's time for that to stop.

I am here a lot.  It's better to be here a lot and happy than to be here a lot and angry.  It gives me tension headaches.  It gives me stress and I learned last year a very important lesson.  Stress is the candy of Cancer.  Oh yes, my friends, Cancer has a sweet tooth for stress.  It may not GIVE you cancer but it will sure feed on it if you let it.  Since I have it ... (remission but still) I need to make sure that I breathe, relax and stay on top of keeping Cancer in remission.  I won't allow it to have any candy or sugar, the same way that I will no longer be having candy or sugar.    I will remain positive, happy, calm, cool, and collected.  I will continue to smile, and not in the "I'm wearing a smiling mask" kind of way.  Nope.  I'll smile for real, because I will be happy for real. 

"Happiness is an inside job" You can be happy if you tell yourself to be happy.  If you just keep deciding to be happy, it will happen.  If you smile at people, you'll brighten their day so why not smile at yourself?  You can stay away from the drama if you make sure to tell yourself to stay out of it.  It's so easy to slip back in, the cesspool is warm and inviting.  It's like a bath or a hot tub, calling to you with how comfortable it is.  "Everyone is here, come on in!" It sings to you like a Siren, bringing you to your death.  Don't let it.  Turn around and run, run far far away from that cesspool.   Come back to the other side where the light is. 

I'm over here to keep you company.  It might not seem like the "cool" place to be at first, but think of the long term effects of being in the light.  Less stress and discomfort, better sleep, a better image of yourself and ... you'll see so many other things that you didn't notice while wallowing in the dirty, dank, darkside. 

I choose happiness.  What do you choose?

Thursday, August 14, 2014

Stick a fork in me, I'm done

My brain feels like a sponge that's been wrung out of all the good, fun, stuff.  Now, my brain sits up in the shell that is my skull a wrung out, crusted, limp piece of gray, squiggly mush.  Or like, a busted up robot, crumpled on the ground and there is the occasional zap of power still trying to keep it running but ... it's hopeless.   Have I painted that picture enough for you yet?

There are a million contributors to this madness.  First and foremost, myself.  I overdid it for myself.  I pushed myself too much as I always do.  But, I had a revelation this morning upon getting dressed.  I've made myself OCD.  Not like, 100% OCD but ... like 50%?  Is it possible to be just a little OCD?  I think so.  I think it's a job requirement.  We should put it on our list of required skills for this job.  "Must be a little bit obsessive compulsive to ride the ride".  I find that I hate when my boxes touch on the screen at work, or I hate papers that are haphazardly stacked.  Nope.  They have to be stacked neatly.  I can't have papers on the counter at home.  I go through them, sort them, and move them to the table where I have a filing system ready to go.  I can't handle my car being a mess.  It may take a day or two but suddenly I am freaking out and need to clean the car.  And ... I have to work as much as I can so that I know when payday comes ... the money will cover the bills.  It's what I do.  I feel like I HAVE to work.  So I push and push and push and push until I can't go anymore.

Healthy?  Not so much. 

Balls are in motion to ease that for me and ... that will be one less OCD part of my crazy life.  The rest will still be there, trust me.  I know this because today I was having a major OCD freak out while driving my husband's truck to work.  He's in construction so ... you can do the careful deductions to figure out why I was going nuts, right?  No?  Let me fill you in. 

Stuff ... Everywhere.

Electrical tape, a couple hand tools, receipts for the job site, receipts for home, a box of misc. parts, some weird orange plastic things that had a cotton ball-y thing on them, and ... of course ... a shit ton of dirt! My eye is twitching just thinking about it.   But, that is his domain.  It's hit mess.  But that was just another jab in my side, indicating that I am more OCD than I thought.

Money stress, training stress, work stress, sadness over feeling like I lost someone from my life even when I didn't even know them, feeling like the world is a little less happy now. Worrying about  my Nana, worrying about things I have zero to no control over. 

I worry about my health.  (apparently not enough to work less but still ...) I have felt some things (am still feeling some things) that scare me.  I've tried to talk with the docs but ... I got fed up that some scary symptoms were a "headache" so I didn't go to them with this.  What are they going to say?  My heart has a "headache" too?  If it keeps up I may go see them tomorrow.  I was supposed to go to  my doctor tomorrow anyway but I cancelled that appointment after my anger that the "headache" word again.

I feel like I am overwhelmed.  I feel like I am on a hamster wheel.  It spins and spins and spins but I am really not getting anywhere. 

I'm taking a little break from working on the next book project.  I have three active books.  I need to really focus for the next one.  The next one is the start of what I hope will be a series.  It requires a little more preparation and homework.  But, this is what I love so be it.

I just feel like I am up against a wall right now.  The wall will move eventually ... I just have to push a little bit harder.  And you all know me, if there is one thing I do ... I push myself. 

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Thanks for the Memories

To quote from Whitman, "O me! O life!... of the questions of these recurring; of the endless trains of the faithless... of cities filled with the foolish; what good amid these, O me, O life?" Answer. That you are here - that life exists, and identity; that the powerful play goes on and you may contribute a verse. That the powerful play *goes on* and you may contribute a verse. What will your verse be?
- JOHN KEATING, AS PLAYED BY THE LATE, GREAT, ROBIN WILLIAMS


Oh how it absolutely pains me to write those words!!! Late Robin Williams?  How on earth could that be?  Such a tremendously talented man.  A tortured soul, yes, most comedians are.  It's where the comedy comes from.  Did you know that?  I actually did.  Yes, I knew he battled demons.  But, like the rest of the world, I wasn't aware of just how bad that fight was. I wish I wasn't referring to him in the past tense.  This world is not ready to be without him.  We aren't. 

Laughter is the best medicine.  Truer words have never been spoken.  How many times in my own dark days did I laugh at a joke and feel a little better?  Do you know who my favorite comedian was?  It shouldn't be hard to figure out.  Robin Williams.  Did he know that?  Well, no.  I'm just a girl who happens to live in the same county he spent a lot of his time in.  He had a BEAUTIFUL house up on the hill in Sonoma County.  My husband did electrical work for him years ago.  He was blessed with the chance to meet him.  He's a lucky som'bitch.  I'll tell him that too.  I've wanted to meet Robin Williams since I was a little girl.   I loved Mork from Ork.  He was funny and silly and carefree.  Robin Williams was a huge inspiration in my very own life.

How can he not be here anymore? 

The moon is a little darker, the stars not shining as brightly as before.  Our world is different because there is a powerful force to be reckoned with that has given up the fight and left us.  We are left here on earth to wonder if there was anything we could have done.  We are left to wonder if the light will ever be as bright as it was when Robin Williams was here. 

His smile was infectious.  The laugh ... oh how it made me laugh.  He was a voice actor, a character actor, a dramatic actor.  He was everything and anything.  He was amazingly gifted.  How can that man, who cracked jokes at a thousand miles an hour and seemed to bounce off the chair with his energy ... just disappear?  Or that man, who you thought couldn't be serious, even for a minute, suddenly was on screen before you playing a conflicted and tortured psychiatrist.  There was rarely a smile in that movie.  A man so subdued I was shocked it was him at first.  That is the mark of a true talent.  An incredible talent.  There isn't anyone else out there like him.

The social media world is abuzz with remembrances, condolences, and pain.  There's not a soul on this earth that he didn't reach in some way.  A supporter of the troops, an SF Giants fan who was at games rather often, a family man, a local Sonoma/Marin county resident, A comedian, an actor, a giver, an inspiration, a husband, a father, a friend ... His movies traversed genres. It wasn't like he was just a comedian, or comedic actor.  Nope.  There were a few dramas sprinkled in to show just how goddamned brilliant he was. 

This awful, heartbreaking, news sheds light on a serious issue as well.  Depression and Suicide.  It's a real thing, people.  It doesn't matter how famous you are, how talented and accomplished you may be in your life.  There are some mountains we can't see over.   It takes tremendous strength to even try to climb over them and at times, the journey can be too much.  Just when it feels like the peak is close, you fall back down the mountain to start over.  No one can understand what you are feeling because it is YOU that is experiencing it. 

Tom Hardy's quote comes to mind ... "Everest is obvious to climb because it's there, it's a mountain.  But personal Everests, you can't see them, and the journey to the top of the mountain and back down is frought with hazards and no one can see them but you." 

Everyone has a personal Mt. Everest.  It doesn't matter the issue because it is your issue.  What is important to you, is important to you.  You're the one who has to overcome it.  No one has the right to downplay anything in your life. 

Obviously, there was something awful in Robin Williams' world that he couldn't climb over.  No one has any right to say anything about it.  It was his battle, and he decided to end it. 

The pain I am feeling over this is shaking me to the core.  Growing up, whenever someone would ask "If you could have dinner with anyone, alive or dead, who would you choose?"  I always chose Robin Williams.  He seemed like a fun, effervescent spirit who seemed to obtain great joy from making people laugh.   He was a giving person, a kind person who gave his time to more than his career.   But now, there's no chance of meeting him, of soaking up that joy by just being around him. 

As a Sonoma County resident, it feels like our most famous citizen is gone.  A star that lit my childhood and movie/television experience has gone out forever. 

He wasn't just an actor to me.  This isn't just some famous person who died and it's sad and life goes on.  This one hurts and it hurts bad and my heart goes out to his wife, and his children, and his family.  I cannot even imagine what they are feeling if I am devastated to hear of the man's passing and I never truly got to know him in person. 

"Real loss is only possible when you love something more than you love yourself." - Sean, as played by the late Robin Williams

Be at peace now, Mr. Williams.  Fly free in the heavens and smile.  Your legacy will live on forever back here on earth.  You smile will shine from television screens, your laugh will dance like music in the ears of the people who loved you.  We loved you.  Perhaps that wasn't what you needed or even really knew.  But, we loved you and will miss your spirit back here with the earthlings.  Fly back to Ork, Mork.  Rainbow suspenders will never be seen the same again.  A red clown nose , giant clown shoes and a new meaning for the term Gesundheit will bring your face back to our minds.   "It was a run by fruiting"  "heloooooooooooo", dancing with a vacuum cleaner and sticking our faces in pie.  Run your fingers through the painted colors of heaven, because we don't believe for a minute that you are in that dark place.    Peter Pan will live forever in our hearts as you will, sir. 

** But oh, to be free. Not to have to go "Poof! What do you need, "Poof! What do you need, Poof! What do you need?". To be my own master. Such a thing would be greater than all the magic and all the treasures in all the world. **

Well, Genie ... You're free. 

Rest in Peace, Robin William.  Na-nu Na-nu

Sunday, August 3, 2014

Twenty Four Hours

What a difference 24 hours makes.  It's a whole day.  In that one day, I have a completely different outlook.  Why?  Well ... a friend of mine found an article about an author who put her books on Amazon for free, and makes money doing that.  Well ... if she can do that, SO CAN I!
So I looked into it, and uploaded, tweaked and designed and now my first finished book, "Mirror, Mirror", is sitting available in the Kindle Bookstore for $2.99.  I have also been messing around on CreateSpace and am in the process of making the paperback version also available on Amazon for $9.99.  I'll only make about $2 on each book but ... do you know what that means?!

I'm an author, baby.  A published author who is actually able to make something called money with the words I am writing. 

Is this the ultimate dream come true?  Sort of.  The ultimate dream would be to achieve some sort of Stephen King-Danielle Steele type fame where the mere mention of my name and people know who I am but ... that's rare and ... I'll take just having my work out there, in print, on e-readers ... everywhere!!! I'll take it.  It's like ... almost the full and total dream. 

I want to be over the moon excited but I am somewhere that I have to remain calm, keep it to myself and not dance around the room excited.  But, I am excited.  This is like HUGE!! 

Who knows what will happen?  The what-if is kind of a nice feeling.  Nothing could happen and then again, a lot of things could happen.  I could make a little extra money to pay bills off which would, ultimately, give me more free time to write from home.  It is the bills that keep me here day in and day out and night and day and day in and day out again.  If I could make enough to free up some of my time .....

Well that would make me feel downright successful there!!!

Chase those dreams, kids.  Just go out and chase them. 

Saturday, August 2, 2014

To quit or not to quit

Rejection is all part and partial of the journey to becoming a published author, is it not?  So far I have received dozens of letters politely declining my work and while it sucks, I take them, save them in a folder and move on.  Then, someone loved my synopsis and wanted to see 100 pages.  I eagerly sent it over ... feeling unbelievably hopeful about all of this for the first time.

Until now.

I just received word that my writing didn't live up to her expectations from my query letter and the synopsis.  I had a wonderful idea but my writing wasn't as dramatic enough.  I can't even defend it because I am my own worst critic!!   Do I pull up that file and go back through it with a fine toothed comb, changing things and revamping it into something better?  I don't know. 

Honestly, I feel like hanging up my imagination forever.  This one completely took the wind out of my sails and fogged up the dreams I was having.   Perhaps, I'm not good enough for this.  I'm not capable of writing well enough to have an agent represent me and shop me out to all the large publishing houses.  I'm just a girl from Santa Rosa who writes obsessively ... but isn't good at it. 

Oh poor me, right?  But, how can I just pick myself back up and move forward from this?  It's like ... the one solid good hope that I had and now it's been squashed to bits.   Smashed into smithereens!! Not a trace of shining hope left to hold onto.  It's awful.  I feel worthless ... like I shouldn't even continue this charade. 

I had planned on spending some time this weekend working on the first book of the series I had planned but now I don't even want to open a word file.  I want to go through the computer and delete every single idea that I have in there.  It's the equivalent of wanting to smash anything in my reach.  Temper tantrum?  Yea, maybe.  I want this more than anything in the world and it is starting to seem more and more like an impossible feat.

Maybe the feelings are residual from yesterday ... I miss my Dad something fierce and feel like I am not living up to my potential and he can see that.  I feared I was getting sick again but so far I have perfect blood work (still waitin' on the inflammation blood work and the autoimmune levels).  It is my food that is doing this to me, it has to be.  I'll feel better once I have that under control for a few days.  It's how it works.  At least I am not getting worse.  I hope to keep continuing on a path to getting better.

Man, I am so freaking depressed now.  Like ... I feel I am a complete and total failure.  I spent so much time talking about being a writer.  I've carried this dream in my heart for many years and now, it's gone with the wind.   I don't even have the heart or the energy to go on with this anymore.    This is why I am pessimistic!!! It saves me from this let-down ... this ... rejection.  No one likes rejection!!! UGH. 

I'm embarrassed that I have told anyone about my writing.  I'm embarrassed to have called myself a writer.  I am ... ashamed.    I should have kept it to myself because it would have saved me from having to answer the question that she hated it, that I suck, that I shouldn't ever be a writer.  I should just stick to my blogs and keep my writing to myself. 

I need a pick me up.  I feel like a complete and total loser.  A sick loser that feels like crap. 

Whatever. 

Friday, August 1, 2014

August 1st ... I hate you.

Fourteen years ago, today became a day I will hate for the rest of my entire life.  It had been a day everyone in my family had been trying to prepare for, but who really can prepare for a death?  There is no way to prepare.  Trust me, I tried to gear myself up for it and I still feel to a billion pieces.

My Dad died on this date, fourteen years ago.  For how I feel, you'd think he died an hour ago.  It is a wound that refuses to heal and I am in no major hurry to make it heal.  He was my best friend, my knight in shining armor, a little girl's first love.  I was my dad's pride and joy, his princess, his little girl.  It's no wonder I am not doing well with it, right? 

Last year, on 7/31/13, I was given the final diagnosis of Wegener's.  It had been something that kept being mentioned and then finally I had the specialist on board as well.  So last August 1st I was still sort of reeling from the news that I didn't quite notice the day. 

There's no avoiding it today.  It's been bothering me all week.  The emotions that have been running rampant in my body are out of control.  It's resulted in me eating crappy, making bad choices, not sleeping enough and just feeling GROSS.  But, I noticed some things happening that I didn't really pay much attention to.  I figured my bad eating was making things act up.

My doctor disagrees and has ordered me over to the lab for blood work. 

Well, that kind of statement is enough to make someone worry a little.  Granted, I do my blood work every two months and it's due two weeks from now but she says I should go do them now so I can see what my levels are.  It's been my experience that my blood work doesn't properly depict how I am feeling and I am left feeling frustrated.   Hopefully, this won't be the case.

No, I don't want something BAD to show up, I just want something to show up that explains all this.  Is it because of how I was eating?  Is my dumb disease waking up again?  I've been working far too much and that doesn't help things stay on track. 

This just isn't a good day for me.  I'm sure the blood work will be fine and I won't have to worry about that but ... the day still sucks.  I want my Dad to be here every second of the day.  Not being able to bounce these things off him kills me all the time. 

I did my labs.  Now I sit and wait. 

I miss my Dad and I want it to be August 2nd already.