Dear Diary: Depression is Rage Spread Thin.

This morning, I opened my eyes and felt absolutely no earthly desire to get up. It was at this point that I began to count back the last week: trouble sleeping, trouble staying asleep, no will power, no desire for anything, feeling dull, feeling listless… OH HAI, DEPRESSION HOW IZ U? To be completely frank, I have no idea why the hell it took me this long to realize it. I have more than a passing relationship with it, so WTF?

Of course, the biggest issues with being depressed are the fact that (A) wallowing is bad, (B) wallowing is bad, and (C) wallowing is ba-a-a-ad. And for the hard of hearing, or perhaps, more like the people with bad eyesight: WALLOWING IS BAD. I figure if I keep telling myself these things I might actually believe it one day. So far? No dice.

To be perfectly frank, I despise the whole depression bit. I’d like to say this has everything to do with weakness and being strong. Blah, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah. I fucking hate it because it gets the gods damned fucking way.

I mean, shit. If I put on a slinky number and waltz around doing my best Dita Von Teese impression, my depression (henceforth known as D-bag-shun or DBS for short) will look around, sniff in an unimpressed way just prior to saying, “honey, you need to lose 20 pounds before that will work.” Or, if I’m happily maintaining my diet and ignoring the chocolate in my house, DBS says, “sweetie, the chocolate isn’t bad for you! All the doctors say so!” And then ten pounds are magically added… to my ass… because I thought about eating it.

It’s a vicious fucking cycle.

And irritating!

But, vicious.

With a slapdash of evil on the side.

I work very hard to keep myself doing things. I clean the house and I take care of TS (which is ten times harder now that he thinks he should be asserting his independence—and let me just say: IT’S NOT TIME FOR THAT YET DAMNIT). I do the laundry and I keep my hands and head busy. I do the dishes a thousand times a day and carefully plan out what I’m going to eat through the day so that I’m less likely to break my diet (BUT WHO CARES BECAUSE DBS WILL REMIND ME THAT THERE IS ICE CREAM IN THE FREEZER THAT WON’T MAKE ME FATTER EVEN THOUGH IT WILL). I write out scenes and blog entries in my head. I focus on my religion and where I want it to go. I check my websites and my E-mail and I take long walks. I try really fucking hard to not be depressed, so it’s really fucking irritating when I wake up with it smacking me in the face…

…with a giant black dildo, a heart painted in pink splattered across the tip.

I’ve been trying to do the silver lining thing, too, even though I read somewhere that it’s actually bad for you. I keep telling myself that things aren’t as bad as all of that. And even though my imagination is very good—you think the shit out of a Wes Craven flick is scary? Enter my head; go on, I dare ya—I keep trying to look at the brighter side of things. I keep reminding myself that we’ve got food on the table (thanks to state aid), the lights and gas are on (thanks to what was left in my bank account), rent is paid in full (until tomorrow), and I have a healthy kid (until I duct-tape his mouth shut). So, things are good! They’re great! Yay! Yippee…

And I’m the first bitch that you turn to when shit turns bad. I mean, I have a fucking plethora of happy-go-lucky horse shit that I can spew out in a pinch. I mean, if you need comfort? I am the gal for you. I have advice all over the place, stashed in crevasses that I didn’t even know existed. If you are having relationship woes, you come to me because I can make you smile. Money troubles? Come and knock on my door. I won’t be able to lend you money, but I’ll get you drunk enough to forget that you have money problems. Stressed the fuck out and nowhere to go? As long as you don’t mind an old incontinent dog, a kid who never shuts up, a boy hubby who sits on the computer until all hours, and a bald dog that loves to lick your nose? You can crash on my couch for a night or two… before you run away screaming. Me? This bitch right here? I am the go-to gal for good advice and happy expressions that mean next to nothing. Plus… hullo? Booze! (I’m at tequila only presently, so I hope you like shots without a lemon wedge.)

So, you know, DBS can just go fuck itself because I’m full of awesomeness all over the fucking place. I ooze awesome and no, it’s not an infection, I swear.


Except, that. You know. I can say that I am awesome and that I rock and that I am the most together person this side of the hemisphere. And sometimes, that might actually be true. However, even the strongest tree branch breaks at some point or another. And this ball busting bitch is ready to just about say, “Fuck this!” And run the fuck away from it all. You know, not that I have (WHAT THE SHIT IS THAT? IT’S A FUCKING MOSQUITO IN MY HOUSE. IN. MY. HOUSE. IN NOVEMBER. WHAT THE SHIT IS THAT?!) anywhere that I can really run away to. I’m too into the responsibility thing, you know, what with being a parent and all of that, plus being the only responsible human being in a two thousand mile radius that will take care of Jasmine and Sweet Pea. Oh, yeah, that’s right. I am the only one who deals with anything dog-related because I am the only person who, you know, has a brain around here.

Okay. That was uncalled for. However, you know, I’m pent-up and ready to fucking asplode all over the keyboard here. (And no, I’m not talking about the pleasant type of explosions, either.)

So, here I am. I’m taking stock and I feel more than a little out of control with this: I am a twenty-eight year old divorced woman who has a three-year-old son. That three-year-old would rather eat his own hand than listen to me. I have no job. I have no help with home responsibilities. (And as a stay-at-home person, I feel that is mostly okay.) I have a car that kind of functions, but needs a quart of oil every 1000 miles… and no idea where the oil goes. I am freaking the fuck out because I have no job and no way to pay bills. I have no fucking idea if and when I will be receiving unemployment payments. There won’t be any fucking Christmas for anyone in this damned fucking household because of said monetary issues. I’m alone. I’m scared. I’m tired. I want to cry. But, you know, on the bright side: I have nails that are [poorly] painted gold!


I think this is the point where I start hyperventilating and pass out for three minutes. Excuse me. nhnhnhnhnhnhnhnhnhnhnhnhcx <- That would be my head having hit the keyboard.

I'm pretty much at the breaking point. So, something has got to give. If it's me, there is going to be a really unpleasant screaming fit in the next forty-eight hours. If it's something else, well, that's fucking awesome because at least I'll be able to conserve my voice for yelling at my son.

The Between-Jobs Buzz: It’s All a Waiting Game.

I feel like I’m still in limbo, but only on a part-time basis. I’m not full of anxiety or anticipation. I’m not full of nervous energy. I just have this terminal dangling feeling now and again. It’s like waiting for Greed, Incurt of terminer and oyer to make a decision regarding my witchcraft associations. It’s like waiting to hear if you have terminal cancer or not. It only bothers me when I’m faced with it.

I come face-to-face with it at the strangest times. It’s like having a war flash back because of a particular scent. It comes at me from left field. I’ll be fine for days on end with not a care in the world. And then, I’ll look at the calendar and there it is. And then, I’ll hear about Christmas sales and what people are doing for the holidays. And then, I’ll get a text from TPO, who heard back in short order. It’s all these weird things that make the waiting unbearable.

I keep thinking about doing a Tarot consult on myself, but that’s an iffy adventure. I have such a hard time disassociating myself from the reading that I have difficulty interpreting properly. I’d ask for readings from others (I did, too) but it seems pretty selfish. I’m not saying that trying to see the future isn’t a selfish endeavor–depending on the question, it most certainly is. However, it seems wrong to use my cards to see any further than I already have.

Let’s face it, though: I’m out of my mind here with worry. It’s one thing to pay the cable and gas and electric bills. However, rent is rapidly approaching. I have about five bucks in my account. I can’t pay rent with that. Thinking about this is giving me a stomach ache and a headache. In fact, I think I might throw up if I continue in this vein any further.

So, for the most part, I try to lose myself in lots of things. When I clean the house, my mind hyper-focuses on the next step. So, it’s okay up until I have a psychotically clean house. It’s easy to lose myself in my walks. I’m always focused on blog entries or the writing I have planned or the walk, itself. So that’s okay until the walk is over. I spend a lot of time watching TV because it’s easier to forget things that way. I always have to be doing something, focused on something, to keep all that grown-up shit at bay.

And ain’t that the rub?

This is a part of being an adult. It’s the worries and the fears and the irritation and the stuff that furrows the brows. To be completely fucking honest, if this is what being a grown-up is all about, then they can keep it. I am not buying! …If only it was that easy.

So, in the mean time, I’m in limbo. I’m sitting around in the Eternal Waiting Room (think Beetlejuice, the movie with Michael Keaton), twiddling my thumbs as time passes by. I can hear the click-click-click of the clock as it moves ever so slowly from one second to the next. Already, an eternity of waiting has passed and I know that I have yet another eternity to go before anything becomes solidified. What really sucks about all of this waiting around? Obviously, I forgot to bring a book or one that holds my attention long enough because I keep staring at the slowly moving second-hand instead of distracting myself effectively.

Aliens Builts the Pyramids.

(For a while there, I had a journal that I filled with various rants before I realized that my ranting only happened once in a blue moon. There were some very epic rants in there about various things. I think the one that will always be the biggest problem for me is the whole “Aliens Built the Pyramids” horse manure that’s touted about all the time now. It’s aggravating and irritating and insulting.)

Has anyone else noticed the change in the line up of the History Channel? I know I’m not the only one who has ever noticed this or if I am, then I have way too much time on my hands. However, as I look at a list of their television shows, I’m seeing a long list of reality TV programs, WWII programs, and alternative theories programs. This aggravates me since I’m too cheap to add channels like the Science Channel or the Nat Geo channel. So, I’m stuck watching the History channel, which means that I can become an expert on WWII, odd reality programs, or alt-theoretical movements.

What the hell am I getting at?

Yeah, I ramble a lot, so I’ll quickly segue into what I wanted to talk about: the new age movement in literature. (One day, I might actually get back to the point of the above mention start paragraph and rant about the programming based on this shit.)

Everywhere you go nowadays, you’re smacked in the face with some new cockamamie theory. I guess it’s no big deal since, you know, everything started out that way. A bunch of pagans were ruling the earth and then, a new theory crops up: monotheism. We made shelter out of caves and scrub grass, but then we all had to upgrade when the first caveman’s theory of a mud-brick home held up against the test of time (and weather). So, new theories are pretty common.

What aggravates me are the aliens stuff.

Do I believe in life out there? Sure. The galaxy is big enough and wide enough to have at least a planet or two with life on Photobucket it. Maybe the life in question isn’t what we would consider life, like conscious soap scum, but it’s probably out there. Somewhere. The galaxy is also odd enough, old enough and weird enough to have life that is (A) more advanced than we are and (B) less advanced than we are. Do I think that we have little green/gray men? Maybe. Do I think all aliens are bipedal? Probably not. Do I put a lot of thought into all of this? Not until this moment, right now.

I have a point to all of this idiotic rambling, I swear. My point, which I whip out with a flourish, is emphatically stated with the author: Erich Von Daniken. Photobucket He’s the bastard that started all of this shit way back in the seventies. He’s considered (this is directly quoted from the website that is all about him) as “the father of the ancient astronaut theory.” And yeah, that’s true, to a point. He actually built his theories on other authors who had voiced similar opinions before him (for example, Peter Kolosimo). However, he’s also pretty good at being a fraud. He’s put forth proof of his theories that he later had to retract as fraudulent: case in point, The Iron Pillar of Delhi. This is only one of many.

Okay, so, the guy’s a crackpot as far as I am concerned. Hell, Carl Sagan felt the need to tell him off (to a point). While Carl Sagan didn’t necessarily refute his theories out-and-out, he did say that “extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence.” (This may be why the moron thought putting forth fake evidence was a good idea.) Erich von Daniken and his book, The Chariot of the Gods, has since brought about numerous ancient astronaut theories to the forefront.

Some of the more noted authors include Robert Bauval and Graham Hancock.

Now, let me side-track a little: I can’t stand Graham Hancock. You might think that I am basing this entirely on the fact that he thinks aliens came down and helped us out back when we were nose-picking, drooling anthropoid morons. Wrong. I’ve actually read a book by the idiot, I mean the author: The Sign and the Seal. Photobucket “The Sign and The Seal: The Quest for the Lost Ark of the Covenant is a controversial book by British researcher Graham Hancock. It was published in 1992. The book narrates the endeavors of the writer in searching for the true Ark of the Covenant and proposes the theory that the ark spent several years in Egypt before it came to Ethiopia via the Nile River, where it was kept in the islands of Lake Tana for about four hundred years and finally taken to Axum.” Quoted from Wiki.

I’m going to further side track by quoting myself from my personal blog on the subject of this book:

“…this author is a fucking moron! He found roadblocks to his theory and immediately went about proving his theory the most difficult way first instead of merely looking at the archaeology and time period previous to the Ethiopians’ claims! Just because some big fat guy wrote that it was “impossible” for the Ethiopian Jews to have had a start before A.D. 70 (since that was approximately the time that Jews fled into present-day Yemen and present-day Saudi Arabia from Roman persecution), except that they and even Graham Hancock is forgetting a very important piece of the puzzle: What major country was sitting about for thousands of years before Roman rule took over?


“Now, in ancient times, there was no Sudan and Egypt ruled from approximately the end of the Nile (its drainage point to the Mediterranean Sea) to the fifth cataract. Fifth. This places their complete rule in an area that was known as “Kush” by the Egyptians. This area is present-day Sudan almost in the country’s entirety. Now, beyond the “land of Kush” were the Ethiopians, which is denoted in mentions of a dark-skinned and warrior peoples who had their own monarchy at around the same time as Egypt did.

“Now, if a person takes a look at the Roman Empire at its zenith, you can see that it had taken over to only about the mid-point of the Red Sea in Egypt. This was in no way the actual completion of the country, but only where they stopped. That is where the present-day boundaries for the country of Egypt lie, or thereabouts. That leaves from the second cataract down to the sixth cataract, and Ethiopia, all to itself. The Egyptians traded with a warrior race and its monarchy that was further south than they were! Who do these people think that they were? Fucking angels that fell from the sky? Not to be that dark-skinned they sure as hell were not. That would leave me to denote the only obvious conclusion: Ethiopians in their ancient form.

“All right, so how did the Jews get down there and how did they get converted? Simple. There were Jews up and down the Nile throughout Egypt during the reign of Kleopatra VII. She even had a Jew as one of her advisors. They were common enough, even though they had fled that scene years before. It doesn’t matter, though–they came back. So, you have these Jews and the Romans have already gone about persecuting them in their homeland and elsewhere. Where would they flee? They would flee out of Roman bounds which would mean either into the desert, into the desert, or to the south where they would know of a warrior monarchy already firmly entrenched.

“There, you fucking dolt, I solved your damn puzzle and I don’t even think that Ethiopia has the Ark of the Covenant!

“There is also the possibility, seeing as how the Ethiopian Jews do not follow the two major corner stones of Jewish tradition (Chanukah and the Feast of Purim) that the Jews that absconded to Ethiopia were far before the time of the Roman occupation and integration of ancient Egypt.”

Okay, so I’m done side-tracking on that, but for one last thing: After the first chapter or two and having thrown the book at the wall untold amount of times, I stopped reading it. I would like to admit that Graham Hancock’s The Sign and the Seal was the first book that I ever stopped reading while in the middle of it.

Let’s suffice it to say that I’ve given Graham Hancock a try and I didn’t really like what I found. Did I try his compatriot Robert Bauval? Yep. I did. I believe I read The Orion Mystery or at least portions of it. Interesting theories, but I had lost my fervor for ancient astronaut theories by that point. Anything read by Erich, Graham, and Robert just boiled my blood. It still does. The only “new age” book that I’ll give another try to is The Sirius Mystery but that’s because the Dogon people are just fucking awesome. (That’s another story.)

So. To the rant.

I feel like people like Erich von Daniken, Robert Bauval, and Graham Hancock are selling the ancient cultures of this world far too short. Yes, we are evolving but how does that mean that in five to six thousand years are brains have matured “so much” that we can only now comprehend advance mathematics, the use of geometry and scale in artwork, astrology and astronomy and other advanced sciences? Honestly, what the hell are they thinking? The human body has gained in height as has the average human life span, but somehow in six thousand years are brains have gone from minuscule percentages of use to the 8-10 percent we use now? Isn’t the whole evolution of humanity based on brain size, which (I thought) denotes the amount of brain usage? Isn’t that why Mother Nature decided that Homo Erectus, and thereby Homo Sapiens, was the way to go?

I strongly and firmly believe that humanity, on its own, decided to build their monuments.

My belief stems from the fact that there was no impatience in the world then. It was new and exciting and in need of exploration. They had the time to figure out the harder sciences and mathematics. They had the time to carve intricate patterns into tons and tons of rocks. They had the time and the patience to quarry for long periods of time a single obelisk, move it to where it needed to be and then do as they would with the monument. Personally, I think that we couldn’t do that nowadays because we are too into the “now, now, now” mentality. How many Donatellos and Da Vincis are running around today? How many men are spending their entire lives on a SINGLE monument to build? Engineers have a thousand projects all at once and artists flit from one subject matter to the next. We have grown impatient and that is why we could not create something as beautiful and wondrous as the pyramid complex at Giza or the idols of Easter Island.

While I do think that there is intelligent life out there (as I’ve mentioned), I think it’s pretty presumptuous of us to assume that an alien species not only has kept an eye out on us, but was willing to give us a hand building our crypts, cities, languages, and anything else I can’t think of off the top of my head. If this intelligent species was really keeping an eye on us, why would this obviously advanced species want to give us a hand in our evolution? Okay, so maybe it’s an experiment, as seen in one of my favorite television shows Stargate: SG1. Photobucket While I enjoy the plots in the television show in regards to alien species and their need to experiment, oversee and just generally meddle in our genetic structures, I really cannot see a reason why or a need to in reality.

I think one prevailing theory out there currently is that this alien species came to assist us because they were dying out. So, what… they thought giving humanity a lift in the proper direction would be a good idea and then give them all of their knowledge, information and basic history? (Where I get that information: Secret chambers beneath the Sphinx. The theory is that this chamber contains information of an advanced nature, possibly of an alien landing and their history.) Seriously, wouldn’t that just fuck up Mother Nature’s plans for us, not to mention give us a big, huge complex?

Here we are, running along and just learning animal husbandry and BAM! This big silver space ship lands, green guys with fish heads come out (scaring many people to shit) and tell us that, we suck as a race, but they could help us un-suck by giving us information that would be thousands and thousands of years beyond our capabilities. Oh, yeah, and they’re dying so would we mind keeping their information for us until we can use it and build our own space ships and cattle probes? Geez, man. Talk about paranoid, frightening and over the top. I can pretty much say that I would have been one of those ancient people that was passing the fuck out.

Seriously, how does that sound even remotely probable, possible, and actual?

I’d like to assume that any intelligent life out there is keeping their cattle probes to themselves because we are just not ready for that kind of stuff. If we’re so busy fighting over territory with one another, who is to say that we won’t fight over stellar territory with the silver space ship guys? Yet, I’m supposed to sit here and listen that we were ready millennia ago? I guess it’s just like a child: A blank slate and easy to mold, right?

Call me a human-ist, but I’d like to think that we were smart enough to figure out Sacred and Euclidean geometry, engineering on a monumental scale, chemistry and metallurgy, agriculture, and the making of beautiful art pieces.

Memoirs of Miscellany: In Which I Discuss Thanksgiving and Neighbors.

I’ve long since fell out of wanting to celebrate holidays like Thanksgiving. I think a lot of it stems from the fact that I’m no longer a kid, therefore, I don’t really give a shit if school isn’t in session or not. Thanksgiving was cool because it heralded a four-day weekend off from school with turkey and cartoons to be watched. Sometimes, there was a parade taken on the television, but mostly, it was the fact that I didn’t have school for four days that really made it special.

Now, I’m not in school and so, honestly, couldn’t give two shits.

I think another reason I’ve long since fallen out of favor with the holiday is because I’ve become consciously embarrassed over the message behind both: White man came, saw, and conquered the fuck out of a nation that was already well established. Supposedly, I’ve got a lot of Native American in me (I’m sorry, I will never use the term ‘First Peoples’ because it’s just insulting to me.) according to what my mother has said and some genealogy project she did when I was in high school. So, this is like a double whammy of dislike in my eyes: Not only am I consciously aware of what my white ancestors did to my non-white ancestors, but I also get to look on the Pilgrim’s First Thanksgiving with out and out loathing, mostly because as a descendent, I know that the peace will last for all of two seconds before there’s guns blazing, arrows reigning down, Trails of Tears and that whole thing.

Not to mention, the whole holiday is incredibly commercialized. Hell, all of the fucking holidays are incredibly commercialized. (Look out, folks, you’ll be getting a similar rant around Christmas. Excited at the thought?) It’s all about how you have to sit down with a bunch of people and eat turkey or ham. I mean, there’s so much pressure going on in the homes of the people who are cooking and for what? Just so that you can demolish a meal that took days to prepare in an hour or so? Blah. And you know what? Why the fuck is there a parade? What do you get out of throwing a parade for a holiday about eating with your family? I just don’t fucking get it.

I think my biggest issue is that a lot of people are so busy giving thanks for things that they shouldn’t be giving thanks for (decent jobs with high wages; cell phones; fancy cars; nannies to take care of obnoxious children; etc.) that they forget that the point is to be thankful for the little things. Can anyone here say with absolute certainty that the Pilgrims were saying prayers of thanks because they had any of those things? Oh, fuck no.

“The Pilgrims arrived with intentions to escape oppression and build a new community, and that is what the first Thanksgiving was about.” (taken from this website.) However, it didn’t take long before that message was irretrievably lost: “However, as America began to grow as a cluster of colonies under English rule, greed for more land and power overshadowed the original morals brought to the New World. Most Indian tribes were no longer allies; rather, they were considered savages who did not deserve much land. Indians have been stripped of their land, forced into broken treaties, and persecuted throughout the majority of American history.”

So, instead of giving thanks for the strength of the Native Americans who fought against oppression, instead of giving thanks for the fact that we have plenty of bounty as shown in the meal in front of us, and instead of giving thanks to Mother Nature, who is the reason for said bounty, we sit around and joke about how we would like a fancier looking iPhone. Or, a bigger computer with a larger memory card and RAM or whatever the fuck it is. (I don’t know. I don’t do computer things.) It’s sad and degrading and pathetic. I can say that I am just as guilty as being materialistic about things, but I have to also admit that I’ve come to realize that it’s fucking retarded.

And I, for one, will be thanking my ancestors for their hard work and Mother Nature for allowing us to take the items we have for our meal.

So, the neighbors are these loud and obnoxious creatures. They’re constantly stomping around up there. We hardly see them, which we do on purpose. The guy who lives up there is this really weird kind of a guy. He’s got this “I’m fresh off the streets” shaggy look. He also reminds me of MEH for some strange reason. They don’t look alike, as far as I can tell, but there’s just something about him that sets off this little bell. His girlfriend isn’t any better. She’s what you would call a hippy. She doesn’t own a car because it’s bad for the environment. So, she’s not really like a real hippy, but she kind of reminds me of the epitome of a hippy, minus the ‘free love’ thing. She has a daughter who lives with her mother and comes over about once a month to stay. I don’t know what that’s about but it doesn’t really make me think too highly of her. If you’re a mother, you should be with your kid.

They also have people over there all of the time. A lot of them are people who I wouldn’t trust to hold onto a puppy, much less be around children. Or people. TH swears that they’re drug dealers and I have to wonder. The people they have over aren’t over for very long… Still, I don’t want to jump to that conclusion just because I don’t like them. And that’s a fact: I don’t like them. They set off my hinky meter.

So. Last night, there was all of this stomping going on upstairs. This is actually a nightly thing. We’ll be watching something on late night TV and this thudding comes from upstairs. It’s like they have a fucking jack hammer up there or something. And it’s every night. They started later than usual last night, around twelve-thirty or so in the morning. (TH and I were still up.) After a lot of pounding coming from the hallway and just above our heads, we heard the girl screaming “STOP” at the top of her lungs. I looked at TH who was staring right back at me.

Now, with that going on around us, the logical step would have been to call the cops, right? Right. But, we didn’t. I know for a fact that they’ll know it was us that called the cops. I also don’t want to bring any more attention to ourselves than we already have, what with our land lady living right next door to us. And to be honest, if she can’t pick up the phone for herself, then why should I?

I know that sounds hollow and cruel, especially considering my relationship with MEH. If someone had called the cops on us for the screaming fights, I think I would have been grateful because I would have told the cops that he was mentally and emotionally abusive and I needed help. (Who am I kidding? No, I wouldn’t have.) However, I just can’t bring myself to help her. She’s in that relationship of her own free will, just like I was. And she has to learn the lesson, just like I did.

I think this makes me a bad person.

I can say that the first thoughts in my head after that screech was that we had to get the hell out of here. Last summer, the place was decent. We had three neighbors that we saw on a semi-regular basis. There were kids living upstairs. And we never heard our neighbors, even if they were arguing. This year, it feels like this place has suddenly gone seedy, like a roach motel or something. Just being here, living here, makes me feel dirty. We have to get out of here.

Of course, who knows when that will be?

Weight Loss Journal: I May Just Get The Hang of This.

I’ve been trying very hard to keep up with the dieting. It’s proved a very difficult task. There are so many damn things that you can’t have or have to eat in moderation! There’s chocolate and ice cream and did I mention chocolate? It really hasn’t helped that I’ve been feeling extremely down this past week and I got my period. That was like a double whammy of “can you really do this?” Not only that, but it’s really fucking hard to say no to chocolate when your best friend brings over a bar, knowing how depressed you are. (No, I’m not complaining, but it still is hard.)

Even with all of that, I’ve been doing very well. I go for three to four walks a day, sometimes more but not usually. TS and I go for a walk with Jasmine (my fat mutt) in the morning. We try to walk for about a mile or thereabouts. Some days it’s more than that and some days, it’s less. It’s difficult when you have a three-year-old who is trying his damnedest to assert some independence, especially when he doesn’t want to listen or hold his mother’s hand. There’s a lot of teeth-gritting (the two of us), yelling (me), crying (him), and put-upon sighing (both). So far, though, we’ve both been able to walk between .8 to one mile in that time period. We come back home in foul moods, but we do it.

After that, I usually wait until TH comes home before I head out for my next walk. It just makes my life that much easier in not having to take TS on yet another walk. I really want to walk with him more than the once a day, but until his behavior improves, there’s nothing more to do about it. I can barely handle taking him out once a day. I shudder to think what would happen if it was twice a day.

I try to walk about three-and-a-half miles. That’s what I have the weight loss program set to: five days a week, I get a little reminder that I need to walk such-and-such amount of miles. I’ve been walking closer to four miles a day, though. It’s easy and fun and I never really understood what people meant when they went on about having more energy after working out. I get it now, though. The more I walk, the more I want to walk. The more I walk, the better I feel about myself. It’s also a great way to clear my head or to think up scenes for novels I’ll never write (or will write one day but not any time soon) or just to fantasize about shit. It’s like ‘me’ time. It’s kind of nice.

TH is proud of me, or so he says. I assume he is. I mean, why wouldn’t he? I took this upon myself and seem to be doing really good with all of it. Today, he told me that just because I hit my plateau, then that doesn’t mean that I can give up what I’m doing. He reminded me that it happens to everyone, even the people on the Biggest Loser or whatever that show is. I know that’s the case. I can clearly recall his mother and aunts complaining about hitting their plateau with Weight Watchers. I never heard TM say anything about it out loud, but I know she’s had similar issue, too.

He told me that even if it looks like I’m not going to lose any more weight, then I can’t give up because what I’m doing is living a healthier lifestyle. However, in looking into things in that perspective, I can see why most people give up. I mean, if you don’t see any more results, what’s the point? However, I’m going a lot slower than most people, I think, so I think it may take me longer to reach my plateau, if I get there at any point. Hopefully, my plateau is really damn close to my target weight (120 pounds, which is what works with my height). That would make things easier.

This week, I managed to lose two pounds. I think it’s a fluke because I’m under the impression that it’s usually like a one pound a week thing. I don’t know; I don’t think I did anything different this week than I did last week. In all honesty, I believe that the reason I lost two pounds was because I’m finally over my period. Thus, I lost some quick water weight. Hell, probably about a pound and a half was water weight due to period while half a pound was due to real effort. I know it sounds like I’m Negative Nancy-ing my own efforts, but I figure if I say mean shit about myself first, no one else can do it for me.

I’ve also begun to think about something an online friend of mine does. She measures her waist when she does the whole dieting thing and that really resonated with me. I’d like to know what my measurements are, but I’m always so scared to because I’m afraid of what they’re going to be. Not to mention, it’s taken a lot for me to simply announce how much I weigh in a public forum, so I don’t know how I’ll feel in announcing my bodily measurements. To be completely frank, I think I’d be more embarrassed over people knowing what my measurements are as opposed to my weight. I know that’s weird, right? But if I announce it, then everyone will know how much belly weight I gained.

Eh. It’s a moot point anyway. I don’t have a measuring tape that would allow me to do that.

Current Weight 171
Calories Burned 2413

The Between-Jobs Buzz: What Worries You, Masters You.

(Thanks be to Haddon W. Robinson for that little gem of a quote.)

I’ve been doing a lot of not-thinking about what the unemployment office is going to decide. And it’s a really hard damn thing to try to keep my head so busy that I’m studiously not thinking about the whole unemployment thing. Can you imagine how many asinine algebraic equations I’ve had to do to keep my mind off of this shit? (A lot.) Can you possibly conceptualize just how often I have to go and clean something so that I won’t have to think? (No, I don’t get how cleaning leads to not thinking, but it does.) This shit is serious, man. I mean, it’s practically a full time job… all of this not thinking going on. Shit. I wonder how much money I could make–? Never mind.

TPO found out about how her hearing went in a pretty quick manner. However, I can’t help but remember that my lawyer assured me that my adjudicator was in absolutely no way going to rush a decision just because the holidays are coming. In the mean time, I’m left dangling like a worm on a hook. A big, fat, rusty, disgusting, gut-strewn-from-the-worms-ahead-of-me hook. It’s a pretty shitty place to be, in case you were wondering.

Generally, I’m a worry wort. Me and anxiety? We’re like best pals or some shit. I’m pretty sure it has an entire apartment to itself built in the center of my stomach, amid the acidic lake that is part of my digestive tract. I couldn’t even tell you how close we are. Anxiety has made my life hell since I hit puberty. When I was in high school, my anxiety took the form of excessive headaches and deep pains materializing in the right side of my body. When I was in college for the first time, my anxiety took the form of self-medicating in any form possible and the inability to live in my own head. When I was in college again, my anxiety took the form of an inability to breathe and the need to yack all over the place. It’s stayed that way since. Like I said, just like best friends.

In this, I’m not nervous or anxious; I’m just worrying.

Things have been incredibly uncomfortable since this whole thing began. I had enough money to live off of until the start of the new year. However, the unexpected expense of having to hire a lawyer got in the way of that. Now, the money that I was relying so heavily upon to keep us afloat until a decision had been made (in all honesty, I figured I would have had my first check by the first of October; silly me) is gone because I had to pay off the guy who probably guaranteed victory over the people who have ruined my life and turned me into a Welfare Mom.

Things are so hard right now that we’re trying not to go grocery shopping as often. I used to go once a week, but that money has to pay bills. I’ve seriously considered eating, maybe, one meal a day in an effort to make the food last longer for TS. Unfortunately, hunger usually wins out… The electric bill has been late the last two months. The gas bill is the only easy pay since it’s barely twenty dollars. I can only assume TH is on time with the cell phone bill, although I have no idea. His monthly dues to the Union are about three months in arrears. The cable bill has escalated to amazing heights since I forgot to pay it in October.

Again, this is something else to blame on my lack of employment. Since I had everything meticulously planned out in regards to when what got paid based on my weekly paycheck cycle, everything was hunky-dory. However, now that I am out of work, time is no longer flowing as easily as it used to (hell, I have a hard time remembering what day of the week it is, most days). Since TH’s memory is shot to shit for whatever reason, this means that I’m the one who has to remember when things are due. I’ve had to write them down on the calendar above the computer desk, as well as send myself E-mail notifications via my Google calendar. I also have alarms set on the calendar on my phone.

This is pathetic.

I feel… impotent throughout all of this. At first, I could hold it at bay with a cleaning jag or the act of rearranging a room/area. Since I was feeling completely out of control by not having a job, it was easy to ignore it by letting me recreate that feeling with the rearrangement process. However, time has passed exponentially and things still haven’t been resolved to a satisfactory conclusion. I’m finding it harder and harder to get the same feelings out of moving things around as I once did. I’m on autopilot right now. And perpetually in a bad mood, to boot.

It’s a matter of losing control (and crying) or keeping it all in (and staying strong for everyone else) in all of this. I really would like to break down, but that’s ridiculous. TH needs me to stay upright and full of the bitchiness that is me so that he won’t break down. Honestly? He’s closer to the edge than I am because he’s finally taking care of all of the bills, the way I used to. He never understood how hard it could be sometimes to be the one who had to be the mature one. Maybe he gets it now, but the pressure is getting to him faster than it did to me. So, it’s not like I can break down.

And it’s not like I could just get out of the house and go off on my own, either. I’m too worried about making sure that TH can get to and from the job site that I don’t want to take the car anywhere that’s not necessary. The only time I leave the house is when I’m going for one of my walks. If we can afford the grocery shopping, then I do that, too. However, for the most part, I haven’t been out of the house and therefore, out of this situation since the power outages just after Halloween. It’s dizzying as I count back and look at the calendar to make sure, but yeah. It’s been almost a month since I was able to get out of the house and not have some huge major worry going on in my head.

I still feel like there is a giant millstone around my neck. It’s getting heavier every day.

Adventures in Parenting: The Mexican Standoff.

So, TS and I had a decent morning. I woke up first so I got to enjoy some quiet time to myself, in which I studied my Character Naming book for a bit. When he finally ordained to show himself to the word, he came barreling into my room so that we could have some snuggle time, then proceeded about the day. There was a good breakfast (for him; I made oatmeal and it was awful: cinnamon flavor, my ass) and some good chatter. Then, we went for a walk with Jazzy. It was good and brisk and delicious. We got home… and it turned to shit. All because I said the magic words: “It’s time to clean your room.”

Now. Anyone who is a parent, was a parent, has a parent, dreams of being a parent, will write about having had parents, etc, et al. They know that to say those words means that they must have steel reinforced mental fortitude, a strong cocktail in the offing, the ability to ignore the whines that are ploys to get out of cleaning, another strong cocktail in the offing and remain stoutly behind the sentiment of cleaning said room. These are difficult tasks, but I hear they’re important. You know, solidarity and strict parenting and maintaining a regimen, or some such shit.

I am horrible at this because I usually get sick at the ploys part.

I mean, there are only so many potty breaks before I explode.

Today, though, I picked the stand-off to end all stand offs. I was sick to death of the fights and arguments. I was coldly furious with the aggravating stubbornness that he habitually conveys towards us (and privately, both prideful and admiring: he will be his own person that’s for fucking sure). I was intent on a good daily routine that was strict but fair. I was going to get this shit on track. He’s practically four; he should be able to do this shit. I had good fucking intentions, people; let me just get that out there.

Today was the mother fucking day…

…that he spent almost eleven hours in his room, stubbornly refusing to pick up a damn thing.

Now, I know that being a parent has nothing to do with having it easy. The whole point is to learn and make good people and blah, blah, blah. But you know what? There are days where I think Michelangelo had it easy with the Sistine Chapel. There are days when I think that being an Englishman in 1773 Boston, MA would be infinitely preferable to being a parent. There are just some days when I know for a fact that Christopher Columbus had it so much easier in trying to get someone to believe him when he said that he could get to Asia a lot fucking faster. And seriously? I’m thinking that creating an entire fucking nation by hand? A piece of fucking child’s play in comparison. These are things that would be way fucking easier than, you know, parenting. Or, you know, getting them to do something you actually want them to do when you want them to do it.

There are just some times when you want to take a Klonopin, a hefty dose of vodka, and just sleep for a thousand years. Maybe after that little cat nap, you’ll be able to deal with the cyclical logic of a stubborn three-year-old: I want to listen, but I don’t want to clean my room. I don’t want to listen because that would mean I would have to clean my room. However, in not listening, that means I cannot do anything, so. I want to listen. The argument goes on. And it’s so hard to fucking puncture when they have such strong belief in the fact that if they want it, therefore it must be so.

Okay. So how come I don’t go into his room and throw his shit away?

Oh, we’ve done that. We’ve tried the throwing out toys thing. We’ve tried the “let’s put them out of sight and he can earn them back” thing, too. We’ve tried the grounded with no TV thing. We’ve tried the “you can’t go anywhere or do anything” thing. We’ve even withheld visits with Aunt Nuh-Nuh and Gramma and anyone else he wants to see frequently. Oh, the list goes on. And while most of those things don’t fucking work because his memory is incomplete and therefore, he remembers that he can’t do this or that for all five seconds. The other thing is that I’m not going to become one of those parents who clean their kids’ rooms.

See, it’s a ploy. I think it’s encoded in the DNA. I remember as a child that there were arguments about cleaning my room, but (and I could be wrong here) I’m sure that I always cleaned it (or shoved shit under my bed and in my closet) prior to the threat of having things tossed out. Now my brother? Not so lucky. And I think my mom came to the same conclusion that I did because when he was a teenager? I think he cleaned his room twice and both those times, it was because a girl was coming over.

Back to the ploy and the DNA encoding, right? These kids are impressed that if they hold out long enough, Mom and Dad are going to go in there and make the room back to normal. It will be clean and neat; an entire canvas, if you will, to re-destroy as they see fit. And the only hard work that they have to handle is the destroying. Like I said, after a while, Mom and Dad are going to get pissed and they’re going to do the really tough part for these kids. And you know what? I’m not buyin’ it. If my kid doesn’t miss the toys I’ve thrown out to date (most of which are blocks, blocks, some cars, and more blocks) then he’s not going to miss the ones that I’m threatening to toss out now.

And again, I’m not going to pick up his shit.

He can pick up his shit. He can throw it out for all I care, but I’m not taking care of the mess.

So, in the mean time, lock down, right?

Except that here’s the problem: We’re at the Mexican Standoff point to the parenting technique. The definition, so to speak, of the Mexican Standoff is a stalemate; a situation in which neither party can win for the foreseeable future. That’s the definition. There’s some chatter on the Wiki page about how a Mexican Standoff means that there are is some serious danger involved. I think they’re referring to guns and bombs, to be frank. Obviously, no one who wrote that article on Wikipedia has ever been a parent and so therefore, has no fucking clue that guns and bombs are a cake walk in comparison.

This is when it gets dicey.

Now, the Mexican Standoff portion of parenting is reached only when one or both parents have had enough. Whatever that means. It can come shortly after the first initial head-butting or it can occur after the fiftieth head-butting. Either way, it’s going to happen if the kid is alive and breathing, and so therefore, naturally cantankerous. Considering the stubbornness in my family and in TH’s… TS is going to invent the time machine or something and all because someone will tell him that it’s not possible and he’s too stubborn to let shit go. (I’m. Not. Joking.)

So. There you are. The two (or three, depending on the parenting techniques involved) are staring each other down. There’s sweat dripping obscenely on the upper lip of the primary parent in this argument. The secondary parent is in the background, yelling insignificant threats, possibly in a foreign language because the kid just isn’t getting the point. The child is looking right back at you with a tear-stained, snot-streaked face and that accusing stare that only a child has. You know the one: That. Look. The look that says they will remember this incident for the rest of their lives and discuss it with subsequent therapists over the years in an ongoing monologue of Let’s Blame the Parents. Yep. That. Look.

And you’re left with the thoughts of either backing down or keeping up the wall of Parental Unreasonableness.

So. My kid has been in his room, ostensibly cleaning and then, hysterically denying that any cleaning will be done, for the last eleven hours. He’s out now mostly because, you know, he has to eat sometime. In other words, he has to refill his Cistern of Intractability. Oh, yes. Food goes straight into that reservoir of deepest darkest stubborn that lives only in the innocent soul of the child that you created. It’s a fact. (Says I.) So. Where are we in this argument?

The room isn’t clean, but the blocks (WHICH STARTED THIS SHIT IN THE FIRST FUCKING PLACE) are off of the floor. I’d say about 25% of the cleaned up blocks is due to him, about 14% from me, and about 75% left to TH. (I know that the math is off. You have no fucking clue how this block business is unless you’ve had children. They multiply. So while you think you’ve grabbed up every single fucking one? THERE. ARE. ALWAYS. MORE.) And for the most part, the rest of his toys are ostensibly away. (They’re probably mostly under the bed, but if you can’t get your own child to clean his room, there’s no way cleaning under the bed is going to happen. Ever.) And I’m fine with that.

However, this leaves me in a serious fucking pickle. A Dill, even.

I didn’t back down from the fight and neither did he. It was TH who decided that it was finished. I think this mostly stemmed from the fact that it’s getting late and it’s really just a matter of pride right now. My pride in getting my son to do just one thing that I ask when I ask it and TS’s pride in proving to his mother that he is his own damn person, thank you very much. While I appreciate the whole growing pains thing, I am the mother and I will win because I am the mother and I brought him into this world and I can take him right the hell out of it. (I totally just channeled my mother right there.)

So what do I do on the morrow? Do I acknowledge him as supreme commander in the land of all that is stubborn? Or, do I prove to him that I am the queenliest queen of tenacity and will win at every opportunity?

The answer, my friends, is neither. We start the day off with a fresh slate and see what sort of battle of wills we can get into tomorrow.

The Between-Jobs Buzz: You Take My Life When You Do Take Away the Means Whereby I Live.

(That quote is from William Shakespeare.)

It was only this past Tuesday that I had my second appeal, but it feels like it was weeks ago; months ago. In fact, even though I know that it was TPO’s appeal that happened the Tuesday prior, it feels more like hers happened three or four weeks ago and it was mine that took place last week. I haven’t really ‘bounced back’ fully from the “I Don’t Know What’s Wrong” posting from three days ago. I still feel… drained or incomplete. I think a lot of it has to do with the appeal and not knowing the answer at this stage, but I also think it’s because I’m spread thin. I have a lot of projects going on, both in my head and in reality, and it’s just… a lot.

So. I bet everyone wants to hear about the appeal.

I showed up right on time although we were worried that TPO would be late. She was coming from a stress test at the doctor’s office.* There was, of course, TBO one on the other side of the waiting room with BHOP and ELD. Honestly, I don’t know why ELD showed up since her testimony had been supplied already, however, there she was. TBO and I made eyes at each other, but not in the googly love way, either. It was like we were both sizing each other up. I was glad to see that she had changed little, which would mean that her snotty personality would probably be easily witnessed if asked the right questions. Then, it was time to enter the little room.

(* About two or three weeks ago; fuck, maybe more since time is slipping together. Anyway, so some time back, TPO was diagnosed with oligohydramnios. That means that there is insufficient liquid in the amniotic sac. This is caused by dehydration, stress, and possible birth defects. Since she had this with her last pregnancy–though after he was overdue by three weeks–it’s not surprising. It is frightening. Right now, she’s been prescribed with the terrible bed rest. I have a sneaking suspicion–since I know her well enough by now–that she is ignoring said prescription.)

Okay, so how this works: It’s not a court room, although it is similar to a court of law. You go into this back room that is locked by key card pass. Then you’re ushered through the filing room and receptionist desks to a fairly decently sized hallway. This hallway is lined with door after door after door on both sides. And in each room, there is a desk with a computer, a second desk pressed against the first so that it looks like an L-shaped desk (way to save money there, DUA). Then coming out from the second desk is a table with four chairs, two to a side. This table is made so that the second desk and table are T-shaped. So, my lawyer and I sit on one side and they sit on the other. TBO is sworn in since she’s a new witness and she starts off the proceedings…

…with some serious motherfucking lies.

Now, I knew this was going to happen because I am psychic.*

(* After I found out about TBO’s little appearance thing last week, I had BFMA do card readings on behalf of myself and what I could expect at this upcoming appeal. Everything about TBO was negative, including what she had to say. So, it was pretty easy to say, “Lies.”)

In effect, TBO told the adjudicator that she had witnessed my ‘bullying’ and downright meanness to ELD. I was shocked on the surface by what she was saying, but deep down, I really wasn’t surprised by her lies. I think what bothers me the most, again, is that of all of my employees, I got along rather well with TBO because we had an understanding: we were both bitches, but we’d work together for a common goal. However, there arose the problem that when the adjudicator asked for specific phrases from me to ELD or in specific instances, she would just say, “I don’t know what you want me to say.” It was obvious that she was coaxed, but poorly. At one point, BHOP patted her on the leg and said, “Just tell them what you know.”

But, if she doesn’t know anything because this never happened then what is she supposed to say? Even though appealing in the DUA is not a court of law, specific, perjury is still illegal. If I ever decided on a libel suit, I’ll be sure to name in it. One of the instances that she gave was that after she had gone out to do the trash, I wickedly forced ELD to go out there and do the trash. Considering that I was mostly on the phone with the CO or BHOP or with some other store in the morning since I couldn’t get that done in the afternoon, if this ever did occur, it was because I did not know that it had been completed. Another instance, she said, was that I would make ELD do the most menial of chores.

…which is the job she applied for…

So, if taken in the right instance, TBO’s testimony about my forcing her to do menial tasks could be construed as me forcing her to do her job. She also went on to say that I complained often about how lazy ELD was (not true–she was the one that started that particular train). She, in effect, reversed our roles. She became the brave fledgling offering sanguine advice to ELD about how to deal with the awful things going on in her life while I became the mean, overbearing brute that belittled her, talked about her behind her back, and was just generally mean for mean’s sake. It was really entertaining on one level to watch her say all these things. On the other hand, it was also pretty aggravating that (A) BHOP would have TBO lie like this and (B) wouldn’t even coach her on what to say properly.

Or, if she did, maybe the fear of perjury forced her into the “I don’t know what you want me to say” corner.

After TBO’s testimony, it was finally my turn to speak. The highlight as follows:

1. My testimony was clear and concise. I was calm, cool, and collected. The adjudicator had my lawyer question me, so he was able to get to the meat of the problem relatively quickly, while also giving background information on my performance as a manager. I kept my hands politely folded and either looked to my lawyer, to the adjudicator, or directly into BHOP’s eyes as I was testifying.

2. I explained to the adjudicator and my lawyer that I felt I was a decent manager. I also explained that I was very unsettled by my move to the new store since I had learned that there were six to seven managers prior to me in the last six months of that store. I also explained that BHOP was supposed to be my support net since I was a new manager and was uncertain in a lot of the ways things should be done versus could be done versus reality. (The way the CO thought the stores were run and could be run was not how the stores actually were.) I also said that I felt that she couldn’t give me the time I felt that I needed as a support net because she was overworked, harassed, and generally always off and running. It was like I merited a brief second in time when I felt that the problems I was facing at the time were insurmountable. She left me dangling like a fish, is how I put it.

3. BHOP took that personal.

4. I was clear about the dates of each transgression that ELD mentioned in her written statement as well as the one that was recorded with the adjudicator. This was something that they had difficulty with on their part when they were testifying. (I’m always clear about timing and dates; I think it’s a control freak thing.)

5. BHOP questioned me and was very… snippy. She didn’t have a lot of questions to ask me because, I think, that she was woefully unprepared, not aware that I knew how court worked and knew how to keep my answers as to short and concise as possible, and that she had never done this before. She asked if I fired ELD and I replied that I hadn’t. She reminded me that in my statement it says that I claim that I did. I told her that my statement was incorrectly taken. She asked me if I had filed a grievance about it and I replied with I was unaware that I could do that. She then asked if she had ever told me that ELD could come in and work her next scheduled shift. I told her that she had on Friday, after making me feel about two inches tall. She asked me if I had ever called her to report bullies in my store, in the name of TBO and TPO. (TBO was still sitting beside her and not a fan of that question.) I replied that I had called her to report negative personality conflicts between numerous employees, that I had called to complain about TBO’s behavior in general, but that TPO was always a good employee for me and the only one with a problem with her was BHOP. (She didn’t like that.) Let’s see… She tried to get me to admit to sending harassing texts, but I was sure to explain that I had sent texts of “where are you?” as well as phone calls of the same ilk. Since the text was pretty much ignored, I’m not worried about that. No questions about petitions, though. Also, she asked me if I had ever come to her complaining about ELD’s behavior. I said, “Repeatedly in July.” She then asked if I had ever told her things were better. “Yes,” I answered; “after the mediation, things were okay with both ELD and TPO. Problems were nullified.” She didn’t like that answer, either.

6. The adjudicator had to clarify some things: He asked about the petition to which I said there was none. He asked about the specifics of my conversation with ELD on the 17th. I told him that I had spoken with her the one time when she reported her “car situation” to me. I told him any further conversations with her were with her voice mail and text message inbox. He asked if I had sent her a “firing” text to which I answered, “I never fired her. The text said, ‘I’m sorry you quit’.” End of fucking story.

7. TPO did, indeed, testify on my behalf. Her questions were few since she was back up. Pretty much, the most interesting part of her testimony was the fact that my/our lawyer (why not share one, right?) submitted the paperwork her received from her appeal process, which says the bullying was not found in any of the given testimonies. There was one odd part, though. The adjudicator asked if anyone (myself or any co-workers) had ever claimed that ELD was taking drugs while at work. I was startled by this question because it was the first it was coming up in my appeal. TPO said no. In reality, customers had approached her making the claim that ELD was smoking pot on property while at work. In reality, I had mentioned to BHOP in July that I thought ELD’s performance was slowing down considerably because she had recently been put on a lithium-based anti-depressant and I was worried. However, none of this ever came up in my appeal.

So. That’s what happened. After the testimonies and whatnot, the adjudicator thanked us and told me I’d find out in two to four weeks. Yeah, that’s right. Two. To. Four. Weeks. Ack. TPO managed to get her response within four days; three if you count that Veteran’s Day was Friday and the post offices were closed. However, my lawyer was clear to assure me that my adjudicator wasn’t going to hustle a response just because Thanksgiving was next week and that meant, four-day weekend. Gah.

After TPO’s baby is born, my lawyer asked that we get in touch with him.

All I have to say to that: shit-eating grin.

The Between-Jobs Buzz: I Don’t Know What’s Wrong.

I’m in hiding.

I’m in my room, ignoring the world.

Today, after the appeal, I began to feel like everything was weighing too heavily on my shoulders. It was like I had a millstone ’round my neck. There was being a mommy, the emotional ringer the appeals process has put me through, the need to be strong for everyone, the responsibilities to hearth and home (and dogs), and the fact that there are, honest to fucking Christ, no groceries in my house.

I felt guilt and depression slipping through my powerfully built defenses. Guilt riddles me because I feel like I can’t take care of my son, my family. Depression because guilt can never show up on its own.

I’m in my room and reading a book from my middle school days. (I just looked at the copyright: 1988.) Periodically, I re-read my childhood as a form of nostalgia. It’s not so bad. It reminds me that I was young and carefree once; that my biggest worry was hopin’ for love and making it through the day.

Scratch that.

Middle school was a damn hard time, too. It was a battle (with myself and my mother) just to get up and go daily. I knew there would be some fresh, embarrassing horror awaiting; some new form of harassment to deal with. All the experts say that ‘ribbing’ is normal in that age bracket; it’s natural. I often think those ‘experts’ were the popular kids.

I did daydream about being loved, though.

I’ve been hiding in my room since six or so. It’s 9:08PM right now. So, three hours of sticking my head in the sand. …I can see why my mother took time outs like this: I’ll be pretty much back to the brass ball busting bitch (ha, ha; alliteration) I normally am tomorrow. It’s extremely gratifying to be able to hide from the world.

I think what bothers me most about all of this is the fact that I’m not sure of the root cause. Like, yeah… the work shit. But was it the completion of my appeals process, thereby leaving it all in the hands of one man’s decision, or just the steady build up of being unemployed? I suppose a combination is feasible… however I haven’t felt this close to tears since I realized I needed a lawyer on my side.

So. What. Is. It.

To take the words of a famous commercial: “The world may never know.”

The Between-Jobs Buzz: Today Is the Tomorrow We Worried About Yesterday.

Today is the day of my appeal.

I am so unbelievably nervous that it’s downright amazing. I honestly didn’t think I would end up this nerve-wracked prior to this appeal. I hadn’t felt the unsettling gut reactions that I had prior to my last appeal. However, as I think on it, I think that those nerves were directly related to the fact that I was facing something new; I didn’t know what to expect from all of it. Now, I know just what to expect and my nerves are acting up.

The thought of food makes the stomach acid boil. The thought of trying to meditate makes the stomach acid roil. The thought of trying to perform any form of magic to create calm makes my stomach acid rile. The thought of jumping into the shower to calm myself makes my stomach acid flare. The thought of doing anything to get my mind off of all of this makes my stomach acid storm. I really just want to curl up into a ball and fall back to sleep until I have to get ready, but of course, that thought also sets the stomach acids into a froth.

Last week, I was all bluster: I’ll win this, bitch; I’m in the right.

Today, I’m faced with the possibility that my story won’t sound any more plausible than ELD’s did. (TPO received a letter stating why they found in her favor and one of the reasons was because ELD was an unbelievable witness.) Today, I’m faced with the fact that I probably have to face TBO because they think her story will help their case. Today, I have to sit down and pleasantly answer the questions the adjudicator places before me. Today, I have to stand up for myself and say, “The CO has done me wrong and here’s why.” I know I’m right in all of this, but that doesn’t keep the anxiety any more at bay now than it ever did in my past.

I’m trying so desperately to stay positive because that’s what I tell everyone else. I give them good positive words and a strong pat on the back. I give them the advice they so desperately seek, but no one is around to pat my back or to regurgitate the very words that I’ve used on them. I’m feeling not just a twist of anxiety and the beginnings of a panic attack, but also, the very crippling depression that has accompanied this entire motherfucking mess.

I’m feeling lonely and scared right now.

I think I’ll go for a walk… or six.