Received a missed call from a Colorado number about a week after DSB left. Received a mail forwarding notification from Colorado about a week later. I’m not even TRYING to go back to that, and I’m trying not to think about it.
I think this song sums it up perfectly (that and I’m ragingly emotional from loss of cigarettes…Day Two, you kicked my ass).
The song below was brought to my brain, courtesy of my dear friend, Mental Mama. She shared it as a song that reminds her of her significant other, and, as she says,
And it actually depends on the day which of us is “singing” this to the other.
I have literally played this song over 50 times in the past two days, usually on a continuous loop. I’ve emailed it to my mom, I’ve told my dad about it, I’m humming it under my breath. It’s there, it’s stuck.
MM and her significant other may “sing” this to each other, but I think it works for me to sing it to MYSELF. Read the lyrics, listen to the song. I am singing JUST THAT to myself. I’m giving myself a constant pep talk. I’m not giving up on me or who I am.
When I look into your eyes
It’s like watching the night sky
Or a beautiful sunrise
Well, there’s so much they hold
And just like them old stars
I see that you’ve come so far
To be right where you are
How old is your soul?Well, I won’t give up on us
Even if the skies get rough
I’m giving you all my love
I’m still looking up
And when you’re needing your space
To do some navigating
I’ll be here patiently waiting
To see what you find
‘Cause even the stars they burn
Some even fall to the earth
We’ve got a lot to learn
God knows we’re worth it
No, I won’t give up
I don’t wanna be someone who walks away so easily
I’m here to stay and make the difference that I can make
Our differences they do a lot to teach us how to use
The tools and gifts we got, yeah, we got a lot at stake
And in the end, you’re still my friend at least we did intend
For us to work we didn’t break, we didn’t burn
We had to learn how to bend without the world caving in
I had to learn what I’ve got, and what I’m not, and who I am
I won’t give up on us
Even if the skies get rough
I’m giving you all my love
I’m still looking up, still looking up.
Well, I won’t give up on us (no I’m not giving up)
God knows I’m tough enough (I am tough, I am loved)
We’ve got a lot to learn (we’re alive, we are loved)
God knows we’re worth it (and we’re worth it)
I won’t give up on us
Even if the skies get rough
I’m giving you all my love
I’m still looking up
In the comments section over at good friend’s blog (Hi, Sheena! I’m sending everyone over to give you hell at NotAPunkRocker!), I have been convinced that WP is in need of some country music. It is sorely underrepresented in all of the music challenge posts that go on, and I feel the need to rectify this.
To do so, I’m creating a new series on my very own blog, called “Stuck In My Head.” Every so often, I’m gonna do a little brain dump of the songs that are currently stuck in my head. Almost all of them will likely be country, and I’m hoping to gain some converts to the genre.
Country music gets a bad rap. I don’t know how many times I’ve heard the, “it’s about a bad day where your dog runs away and your truck gets totaled or stuck in a mudpit and your girlfriend is cheating on you and you can’t get the tears outta your beer.”
Granted, there is some country music like that. With the new series, I really hope to show the WP world that not ALL country is like that. If any of my fellow bloggers are country fans and want to join in, that would be super. Just link to the post and I’ll give you a shout-out in the next week’s edition.
Without further adieu, the top five songs running through my mind this week:
1) Luke Bryan, Play it Again
You’ll probably see good ol’ Luke popping up on this series maybe once or every other week. We listen to a lot of him in this household, as he happens to be one of DSB’s favorites. I especially like watching his videos because, HELLO, he’s hot! (benefit of country music is that most male artists wear tight-fittin’ jeans with their boots)
And this song? This IS my song. God love ya, Luke, for capturing the essence of Rosa’s excitement for that one particular song.
2) Taylor Swift, Mean
Now, Taylor Swift is my GIRL. She has bipolar disorder, yet is madly famous and down-to-earth and open. She is probably my favorite female artist, and I have all her work on my MP3.
This particular song? Kinda a nice version of a big eff-you! to all those people that brought you down growing up. My favorite lines:
All you are is mean And a liar, and pathetic, and alone in life And mean, and mean, and mean, and mean
I mean, that sums ‘er up for most of the bullies in our life, doesn’t it?
3) Dolly Parton, Nine to Five
Dolly may be old school, but this one is a goodie. Seen the movie? If not, go rent it now…it’ll knock your socks off! This is the lament of many a working woman (and/or man) out there. I used to blast this when I was working at the prison, to blow off a little steam. You might try the same. (Sheena, what would your coworkers think if they heard this coming out of your 0ffice? LOL!)
4) Randy Travis, Look Heart, No Hands
You remember that feeling, right? Coasting down the hill on your bike, closing your eyes and praying you wouldn’t fall? Maybe on a dare? Maybe because you felt so alive. This song brings me back to my youth, back to when I didn’t have a care in the world, and then to the forefront of love. And pretty much anything Randy Travis does is golden. Word.
5) The Lacs, Country Boy’s Paradise
That’s right, we took most of America’s hatred for rap and country and combined them. You have to take a listen, though. This is a super-fun song that should be played often during the summer months when it’s all about having a good time with friends and family and being out on the water. The Lacs will also probably make many more appearances on this series, as I totally dig ’em.
The above song came out right around the time my sister and her (now) husband were planning their wedding. I think both my mom and I hoped that they would choose it as their wedding song, because it was just so “them.” Little did we know that they had another very special song in mind.
It seemed like such a magical time. She had asked me to be her maid of honor, much to my surprise and, er, honor. I mean really, it meant the world to me that she would ask me to be by her side as she married the man she loved most in the world. And although I didn’t know her soon-to-be husband in a very deep way, I was convinced that he would treat my sister right and even more convinced that he felt a deep, profound love for her.
Her wedding day that November was the happiest I had in years. It’s still probably in my top five happiest almost five years later. It didn’t matter that the guy I was dating at the time was a complete social reject or that my dress didn’t fit right or that my shoes were ill-advised. I choked up when I saw her walk down the aisle, barely stopping myself from full-on crying. I was teary-eyed throughout the ceremony, and really, had never experienced tears of joy before. I actually thought that was a made-up phenomenon.
After the wedding, there was a whirling limo ride through the city, with all the bridesmaids and groomsmen and the happy couple drinking beer that was actually made by my brother-in-law and his friends, and made to taste like champagne!
The reception was lovely, I made a little speech (that went rather well, I was told), and we danced away the night. I have never danced so much, ever, and don’t think I ever will again. I actually danced so much that I could barely walk the next day (darn those inadvisable shoes!). My sister and her husband were so clearly giddy and in love and happy. My heart warms thinking of it even now.
A car stood waiting to whisk my sister and her husband off to their hotel for the night, as my then-boyfriend helped me maneuver my tipsy parents off to the cars we drove. A wave goodbye, and they were gone, Mr. and Mrs. The only time I have ever been happier is holding my new nephew. More love and happiness brought to me by those two.
I love that my sister made me a part of that day, and that I have been able to see my nephew a few times since he was born. He is (I think) coming up on three months old now, and my sister has to go back to work. I probably won’t see him as often, but I plan on asking for some time off every now and again so I can go see my favorite little guy. Love and happiness reigns with my sister and that little baby, even through the crying and the tears and the up-all-nights. There is so much love. I couldn’t be happier.
Also perfect — the song that they DID choose for their wedding:
Forgive me, my friends, but my head is in a dark place.
I heard the song posted below for the first time when I had made up my mind that I was going to sing in my parents’ friend’s band, The Lounge Lizards. I was out of my damn mind. This is what happens when a manic 20-something gets told she’s a great singer for some goofing off around the campfire.
Thank God I’m not that manic 20-something, but this song still speaks to me. About how it feels like you’re always fucking it up, even when you know better. About how luck isn’t on your side. The video — going to a dirt race track with an abusive boyfriend, eating sushi from the grocery store as you watch the cars go by, knowing by the way he’s drinking beer just what is going to be in store for you in the evening. Feeling like no one in the world understands and you may as well give up trying to make yourself understood.
I have only one friend from college that I still occasionally email with, and let’s just say the emails are quite infrequent. She sent me an email about a week ago, talking about getting a promotion at work and the new degree she is working on. My friend is an over-achiever, if ever there was one, and has been known to throw herself onto many a project just because someone says it can’t be done.
I’ll be honest, I wasn’t really sure how to react to the news that she received a lateral promotion and is going to get another masters, to add to the two she already has, and, oh, her Ph.D. We were on the same track in college. If I weren’t bipolar, I’d probably be doing exactly what she’s doing, but that’s only happening in another time-space continuum.
At the end of what I think was a very long rant about statistics and computer programming and data analysis (I think), she asked me if I was still working at the prison. And how she imagined that would be “the hardest job in the world.” Wow.
I thought I already had my “coming out of the bipolar closet” party with Jen. Apparently not, or she has forgotten, which is possible because she is a severe binge drinker and doesn’t have the best memory (although she was able to stuff several degrees under her belt, so she must have some memory). The post I wrote yesterday and added as a page on my site, “The Story and the Stigma,” stemmed from me responding to my friend’s email yesterday.
I took Jen through every step of what I’d been up to in the past two years (since apparently she hadn’t been listening) and told her that this all (working part time, being on SSDI, etc) was a long time coming. I haven’t heard back from her, and I’m leaning towards the “you never will” because she’s sent me several other articles since, so I know she’s checked her email.
Typing all this out makes me think — I knew exactly what Jen has been up to for the past two years; why doesn’t she know a thing about what I’ve gone through? I can’t figure out if she doesn’t remember or doesn’t want to remember or just lost track. I suppose it’s altogether possible I never told her, but not likely. In fact, I distinctly recall an email I sent to her right after I left inpatient hospitalization for the first time.
At this point, I only care a little about what Jen will say. I’ve had to go over and over with so many different people why I’m in the position I am in, and so I’m kind of through with the drama of it all. Jen will either reply back to the email, or she’ll just keep mass-mailing me articles that she thinks are interesting.
And I’m just going to keep telling myself that I don’t care until I’m blue in the face. I’m going to keep being nonchalant about this and not freak out, because that would really indicate some mental health issues. Sensitive? Gah, me? No! Much anxiety in your life? Lay in bed at night awake, wondering what all those people out there are thinking of you and how they are probably judging you?
I think I’m going to need some direct therapy on this issue. For now, I’m putting the possibility of a return email from Jen low on my priority list, and I’ll just have to keep shoving it back down there until it stays.
The Counting Crows, Long December (We would listen to Counting Crows nonstop, singing all the words, back in the day. This video takes me right back and I am stuck.)
I have been sick now, in some form or another, since early September. Now that I’ve been through staph, removal of huge pilonidal cyst, bronchitis twice, my doctor tells me this week that I have pneumonia. Seriously?
All of this sickness is making me depressed. It is throwing my world off-kilter and I can’t seem to get it to straighten out. I am not interested in anything, feel like sleeping all of the time, and am not enjoying being around people. I am annoyed and irritable. I can’t see a way out. My brain is telling me that all of these physical illnessess will never go away.
I thought blogging might help, but my heart isn’t in it. I just came home from QoB’s and, while I almost always enjoy my time there, it wasn’t doing it for me. Trying to keep up a conversation took such energy and I just didn’t have it. I found myself being annoyed with myself that I couldn’t just be happy and enjoy her company. So I left.
Now I’m at home. I like being at home. My dogs are here, I have nice places to sit and relax, it is comforting. But sometimes I feel lonesome. At the same time, however, I can’t stand the thought of being around anyone. It all takes too much effort, and that seems to be effort that I don’t have right now.
Part of me thinks that I am talking myself into being depressed, that this is all my fault. These feelings are not true and I am giving up and giving in. Because that is what I do. I have been trying to do things to ward off these feelings — meditating, sacred self, sitting in front of my sun lamp, staying in a routine. But I feel like my whole heart isn’t in it.
I keep hearing this voice inside my head, “You’re depressed. You’re letting yourself go down that road. You are so lazy. Why can’t you just be happy?” That last one…”why can’t you just be happy…” bothers me the most. I don’t understand why I can’t just be happy. I am pretty sure that I was enjoying being happy before all of this illness came upon me. Now everything feels wrong.
What happened to all of that energy, all of those good feelings? Why didn’t I enjoy it more when I had it and what can I do to get it back? When will I start feeling less sick all of the time? Am I still sick or am I just depressed and my mind is telling me I’m sick?
I can’t find anything truly good to say. I have cases at work that are stressing me out, and I feel like there isn’t anything I can do to make some of these situations better. There is a lot of in-fighting in my office area and it is becoming just so very clear to me that my supervisor likes to stir the pot. I am almost dreading going to work every day because I am being faced with these impossible cases and all of the tension and back-stabbing that is going on in my office area. I just don’t know how to move forward, tell myself that I am doing all I can. I really feel off my game.
At work, a lot of times I feel like I give and give and give and help and help and help and no one gives a shit. I guess if, at this age, I am still expecting to be patted on the back and given an “atta girl” that I am out of my damn mind. It used to be different, though. At least I thought it did.
I want to be a good person, a better person. I want to be happy and live my life free. I want to have the energy that it takes to do these things. I want to not have to take all of these pills and inhalers and pills and inhalers and pills and still feel sick.
I must admit, blogging is addictive. Especially when you have some free time. I spent the morning changing the appearance of the blog, using a new thing-a-ma-jigger that I found. I think they’re called templates, but I could be wrong. I left up the header picture that was on there, because it’s pretty, but not really “me.” I have this fabulous little digital camera now and I am pretty sure I can get some great fall pics taken in my own backyard. The trees are starting to turn and it’s gorgeous.
The new house is technically “in-town;” however, just across the street is considered outside the city limits. There is a big patch of forested area very close to my house, and I have a humongous back yard with lots of trees and other prettiness. I even have a huge asparagus patch that looks very mature and a stand of concord grapes. Unfortunately, it seems that my neighbors’ have picked all of the grapes, so I will be putting up a sign because I am SO not sharing my asparagus.
It has been a rather painful weekend for me. I had to have a cyst removed on my lower back and have been back to the urgent care clinic three times since Saturday mid-day to have it drained and re-packed. My fingers are crossed that I don’t have MRSA, but they sent in a sample to be cultured and I should know for sure by Tuesday. Wonder what work would say if I did have MRSA? Questions to be answered on Tuesday.
I am really rediscovering blogging here in the past couple of days. It is something that I have missed doing regularly and never make time for. I think it is high time that I start again. Many thanks go out to Pasha for prompting and reminding me what a joy it is. WordPress has really changed their site, so there may be a few little glitches here and there. There is now a place where you can “like” a post on FB. I am not sure I really want that up there, because I don’t want my work friends reading this. Thinking I will just leave that one alone.
Speaking of FB, I have really been getting out of that scene lately. I still read it, but find myself posting less frequently. I get annoyed by people who complain on FB, and I don’t want everyone to know my business, so I generally just end up saying something goofy or replying to others’ goofy posts. I have put a few pictures of my dogkids up and they seem to be well received. It seems like that is a lot of what FB is about — showing off your kids/grandkids/etc.
So, as I said in my last post, I am looking for winter projects, doing much better when I have “missions.” I have a little list going on my home computer and am adding a few more things. I recently started reading again a blog that a friend of mine puts out. She blogs religiously and seems to really love it. She is always doing crafty things with her kids and she reminds me a lot of my mom in that respect. Much love to you Adriana!
Adriana is another reason I am blogging. I am interested in keeping up with what old friends are doing, and I would like for some old friends to know what is going on with me. I am not a hugely social person, don’t go to bars or parties, but like to keep in touch with a few people. I have a friend who is getting ready to have a baby and I am really excited to be back in touch with her. We were Rocky and Bullwinkle back in the day, and even now when we get together we’re chatting nonstop, finishing each other’s sentences.
In other news, I started Weight Watchers a little over a month ago. Prior to that, I was using SparkPeople and tracking what I ate. Since the beginning of SparkPeople and into Weight Watchers, I have lost almost 25 pounds. It is amazing how that small amount of weight off can make you feel so wonderful. I have more energy, my clothes are getting baggy, and I am fitting into things I haven’t work in over a year. I am more active and feel happier, not guilty all the time and feeling physically ill from eating crap and laying around. For me, Weight Watchers is easy because you can eat anything you want and you have weekly support and pep-talks. The website has what is called “E-Tools” and you can do all of your point tracking there, read success stories, build a recipe, search recipes, and read all kinds of interesting articles. I am really loving it and what it has done for me so far. I have not set a final goal, but am working on my first five percent. After that I’ll go for another five percent, and then another and another, and so on. I have a huge tupperware container and three large boxes of very cute clothes that will be fitting within the next 25 to 50 pounds I lose. So very exciting!!
I found a great-looking recipe on The Sphors Are Multiplying called Slow Cooker Chicken Chili Verde. I am making that in the crock-pot tomorrow with a few changes. I am really loving fall and the idea of having dinner made at the end of the day by dumping a few things in a crock-pot in the morning. Next up is pork chops in sauerkraut. Served with a baked potato, it just doesn’t get any better.
Things sure are a lot different than they were one year ago, six months ago, three months ago, one month ago. Mostly different in good ways, although I suppose there are some drawbacks (which I can’t think of right now, so maybe not). Timing is funny sometimes. I received an email from an online friend telling me that “inquiring minds want to know!” and my therapist told me today that I needed to blog again. I’m sure it’s also something that QoB has also been wanting to say. So, here I am, all bright and shiny and scrubbed up, ready to put myself back out there.
I seem to have this fear of being happy, having been unhappy for so many long periods in my life. I am trying this out, this new life that hard work and luck and self-realization and mindfulness has brought to me. It worries me when I feel good. I think I might be getting manic, and the bottom will fall out. I worry about that every day. Every day, there is a part of me that thinks, “Maybe this is all a fluke and the shit is getting ready to fly.” It is very difficult to get away from this way of thinking. I am working on it, and part of that is all of the work I have been doing on self-acceptance lately.
Does self-acceptance come from self-love or does self-love come from self-acceptance? It’s complicated, all twisted together. I have been treating myself increasingly better each day since Dr. Love left for greener pastures in February. At first I was angry, shocked, lost, upset. I took every phone call or text message as a sign we might get back together. Over time, I realized that I really didn’t want to get back together, wasn’t sure I even wanted to talk to him anymore, and it was a relief that those two and a half years were over. Such a relief.
That sense of relief has increased even more in the past month or so. Moving up North has been the best thing for me. I love my new house and am working on making it mine. Are there things I want to still do? Of course, but that is what I am hoping will keep me going this winter…projects. I always do better when I have a mission. Living closer to family and friends has made things easier to access people who love me and care about me, and has made me feel like less of a visitor in my own life, if that makes any sense. I feel like I am at home. Here in my house, in my heart, deep down inside, I am home. It is a comforting feeling and, when I look back upon past years of my life, I think that is what I have been looking for all along. To feel at home within myself.
I have been able to go to therapy less often lately. I am now down to every three weeks and it is very manageable. The really great thing is that I have a therapist that would find time for me in a quick second if things started feeling bad, or if I just needed to talk something through. I feel intensely grateful for this. Intensely grateful that this person is a part of my life.
I saw QoB today and it really hit me how much she means to me. Sometimes I can take her for granted, or be dismissive in my own head. But she is always always always there for me, whatever it is. She takes care of me when I need it, and lets me do my thing when that is what needs to happen. She is never anything but loving and she is also my best friend. I don’t think that is weird, to have your mom be your best friend. We do it in a healthy way and I think that, more than anything, she is the person who has helped me come to where I am. I think we count on each other for certain things and I think that’s ok. It has taken a long time for me to realize that. I am glad I have finally come around. People on the outside don’t get it, but we make it work.
I have all of this peace and love inside me, and I feel like I am a dramatically more friendly person than I was even one year ago. I get along better with people at work, always have a smile for people, and do my best to always be positive with the staff and offenders I work with at the facility. I think overall I feel like I am a “good person,” whatever that means. I genuinely care about other people and I think that can be a unique thing after working for over ten years in a helping field. There is negativity all around, and I try to just let it fall down around me. Sure, it bothers me, but I can’t let all of the BS drag me down into the mire. Sometimes I find that I need to take what most everyone says with a grain of salt and just use the parts that apply to me that are healthy and sane. Sometimes not much is left, once you take out the unhealthy and the crazy, but some sweet pearls of wisdom are still out there to be had and I sift through sand to find them.
That’s right, I am off work for the next FIVE days. I would say that I hardly know what to do with all of that time, but you’d better believe, I’ve got big plans. Today it’s the dentist, grooming for the Kizz, and haircut for me. Add a trip to Sam’s for the shop and it’s a day. Saturday is my nephew’s birthday party, and I’m gonna have to get out and buy that huge, super-powered water gun so I can follow the tradition of the marshmallow gun that I gave him for Christmas. Bet his parents just LOVE me.
Things in RosieSmrtiePants-land have been getting steadily better. It seems that my headaches are getting figured out. Tooth pain = massive headaches. I also think that all of the work stress makes it even worse, hence the vacation. I need to recoup and relax for awhile. I haven’t taken any time off for over a year, where I wasn’t either sick or going to the doctor. It’s gonna be NICE. Too bad the weather doesn’t look like it’s going to cooperate very well, but I have plenty of “inside” things to do.
I’m still taking Cymbalta regularly and I really think that makes a lot of the difference. I have been able to steadily decrease my Klonopin dose and am now only taking 1mg at night. There for awhile, I was having to take a little bit PRN, and I so HATE doing that. Yes, it makes me feel better, but I don’t want to end up addicted. Which is really altogether ridiculous, considering how little I take and how infrequently I take a PRN. Sometimes it’s just the thought of…aghhh, one more pill to take. Anyone who takes meds reguarly can relate to that, I do believe.
This past weekend was lovely, minus the severe weather. We had QoB and Big Dog’s 25th anniversary party and it was a smashing success. I think everyone had a great time and the best couple I have ever had the pleasure of knowing enjoyed themselves, as well. It was really great to see people that we haven’t seen in quite some time, but was not so fun to drive 70mph trying to out-run a storm. Let’s just say that I had such a hard time doing so, because I was taught to drive sloooowwwly out at the lake, that someone had to hop in my car at a stop sign and tell me to “put yer foot on it, girl!!” Good times…I am probably going to be teased about that for the rest of my natural life. Someone might even bring it up at my funeral 70 years from now…that’s how hilarious everyone thought it was, after the danger had passed, of course!
I went back to church last Sunday for the first time since the week before Easter. I have been avoiding it like the plague, mostly due to headaches, social phobia, and my stalker. I am really glad I went back, and realized that I had sooo missed it. I just feel so clean and hopeful and fresh after I go. Like maybe all my sins have been washed away (at least temporarily). Hmmm…I think that is why a lot of people go to church…for the minty fresh feeling. 🙂
After church, I went and visited my Grandma for the first time since Christmas. That is a relationship that I have historically had a really hard time with. When Grandpa died, I spent a lot of time being angry that it wasn’t Grandma that died and my Grandpa was still here. I held onto that idea, taking every misstep and bit of obnoxiousness from my Grandma as adding fuel to that particular fire. I have really been praying for patience and forgiveness and understanding, and am hoping that I am getting over that hump. Realizing that Grandma is in her last few months of life made me wake up. We had a really good visit and it was like being around the Grandma that baked cookies with us, although I remember her more as related to Grandpa, as it seems like my sister was always with my Grandma and I was always with Grandpa. But, she was like the old Grandma. No, not down on her knees scrubbing the kitchen floor three times a day, but the Grandma that cared and wasn’t hateful. Not like the Grandma that always said, “Your grandpa loves you,” without telling me that she loved me, too. I am really coming to a point that I realized that she did the best she could with the emotional intelligence that she had gained (and lost) over her years. I am grateful to God for giving me a good visit with Grandma, because she does have many bad days and I could have very easily come to her on one of those days where she wasn’t talking. She has pretty much stopped eating and drinking, and hospice has been called in. At least now I can say that I am making an effort to have her in my life, instead of really blocking her out.