Word Vomit

So, truthfully, it hasn’t been the best few months. There’s been some good parts, but… the majority of it has been trying, to say the least. And honestly each time I try to put some of it down in words, I get irritable, emotional, angry, etc and I just walk away. I couldn’t tell you how many times I’ve done that to this post, nor how many times I’ll do it since writing this sentence.

One of my employees – her mother had a stroke. Then another stroke. On the same week that my one other employee was on vacation in Cuba. So I was down an employee and I lost another, and I only had 5 to start with. Top it off with the fact that one of my employees had resigned before then, and I was training a temp (I think.  I can’t even remember at this point).  With 7 days to cover night shifts for all the days.. okay fine. It got worse instead of better when the vacationing employee ended up getting “stuck” in Cuba. I’m not saying I didn’t believe her issues… but the way she handled it was rather poor. Lack of communication as to what was going on, saying that she was going to call to update and then not, and not responding at all until threatened with discipline. Yeah, wasn’t the best experience.

A colleague of mine – who I worked with daily and spoke with quite frequently – checked into the hospital with pneumonia on a Monday. By Wednesday he was bored in the hospital and calling me. Friday was the last time he emailed me. Over the weekend he was put in a medical coma and was diagnosed with metastasized cancer in the brain, lungs, and all over. By the following weekend he had died. (Feb 18).  To say the experience wrecked me to a certain degree would be speaking the truth.  I couldn’t look at his emails, and in the interim between his death and his replacement, things fell pretty quickly apart.

My mom has been in and out of hospital again. There’s been issues with her blood pressure, kidney function, wound care, etc. Healing of wounds waxes and wanes. Pain management has been a constant problem. And it sucks seeing her in such pain. Breaks my heart.  I don’t know what to do to help, and, truthfully there’s not much I CAN do.

I said goodbye to my fuzzy best friend, constant support system and endless source of love for almost 13 years on March 25th. He was my rock, my constant, my best friend. He was my shadow, my baby and my light in the darkness. He was always there for me, not afraid to follow me everywhere and the best listener I have ever spoken to. He was goofy with his periscope tail, and smart as a whip. Handsome, and well behaved, he loved to cuddle, steal my blankets, give kisses and hog the bed. He never met a person he didn’t like, or didn’t charm. He was soft, fluffy and full of love. And he knew he was loved, right to the end.

Ambitiously took on two classes that I was dying to learn all about. The material was really interesting. I was learning a lot. And I got completely overwhelmed by all of the stuff that was happening that I ended up just bailing on classes and flunking out. I hate myself for it. And I don’t even know if I want to go back to it.

I got slapped in the face by a drunk guy in the elevator. An elevator in the apartment building I live in.  So much for being safe at home.

My employee’s mother who had the stroke died in May.

Been losing a good friend for a while now.  Decided to take a big step back and give some space.  Sucks, but it wasn’t unexpected.

I got into such a ridiculous argument with pet foster mother when she dropped off my new buddy, Husky, that I had adopted.  It was absolutely devastating and such a soul-sucking, violating experience.  She felt I would not be a good care giver to my new buddy because my place wasn’t spotless, because i had curtains, because I didn’t have his supplies set up to her “standards”, and she expressed doubt that I had done all I could to help Jake.  Turns out she also lied about the food she was feeding him, and neglected to give me his full medical records/tell me about the suture in his side.

Fell in love with the wrong guy.  At least, feels like it’s likely the wrong guy.  He’s funny.  Smart.  Charasmatic.  Fucking handsome.  And we get along great.  But three strikes and I’m (mostly) out.  It sucks and it’s painful and I pulled myself way back from interactions.  Which resulted in basically a void in the friendship that I don’t even know if he noticed at first.  It’s not like I’m not generally socially awkward regardless.  But recently decided that it’s better to be friends than nothing at all.  And hey, it’s not like I’m not used to weird one-sided friendships.

Good stuff happened too. Like my cousin giving birth to an adorable baby boy. Or seeing the Tea Party.  And Matt Good – twice.  Silly things like tweeting with musicians, celebrities and getting likes to tweets. There’s been fantastic sunsets that I’ve shared in awe of the colours. I had a lovely vacation with my best friend and road-tripped to places hadn’t seen before. I got a beautiful tattoo of an ocean wave. I got to meet an adorable little Texan boy that is definitely a heart breaker. I got to see cousins I haven’t seen in years, and ones I hadn’t met yet.  I welcomed a new adorable kitty into my life, Husky, who keeps me on my toes and gives me lots of love and cuddles.

I got a Tattoo!

As long as I can recall I’ve been drawn to the water.  My parents said I was swimming like a fish well before I was even thinking of walking.  My favourite place is by the waters edge.  Or in the water.  As long as I’m by the water.  I love the sound of the waves lapping on the shore. Or rain hitting the windowpane as it’s falling.  I am a water baby.  And I’m a water sign.  It’s perfect.

It seems spontaneous but it’s not.  It’s a long time in the making.

 

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The start of Emily’s List of Awesome

Occasionally I fall into one of those dark scary black pits of badness.  Those times where, no matter how good life has been recently, everything suddenly turns dark and there feels like there’s no light at the end of the tunnel.  Where you wonder if truthfully your life is worth anything, whether you’ve wasted all your time so far, or if you’ve actually accomplished anything of merit.  When you see all the accomplishments that used to be your milestone goals being completed by everyone else around you, and you’re still sitting on the sidelines waiting for your turn to play the game.

Granted, the pits I’ve fallen into in the past while have neither been as dark, deep or as strugglesome to get out of, but they’ve still been a part of my life.  And I suspect they always will be.  Social anxiety and depression are part of who I am.  For the most part I’m alright with that as well.  I’ve learned to manage them and manage my world around me during those times.  I know the steps to take to take care of myself and to make myself feel better in the process.

But it’s still difficult.

So, with the help of some friends, I started to create a list.  A list of things that inspire happy memories and reminiscing.  Of accomplishments and goals I’ve achieved, both big and small.  Of times I conquered my fears by saying fuck it and doing it anyway.

Emily’s List of Awesome

It is, by no means, a complete list.  And it’s a fluid list – there’s always things going on that need to be added.  Some are stupid (to you) but may be monumental to me.  There are events that should have dates that I’ve forgotten.  And there’s events that I’ve also just simply forgotten as well.   If there’s something relevant that I’ve experienced with you and it’s not on this list, please tell me!  If you have dates for something on this list, please tell me!  And, even better, if you can think of something I should do with you that’s not on this list, let me know!  I love suggestions.

Compassion

Compassion by Miller Williams

Have compassion for everyone you meet,
even if they don’t want it. What seems conceit,
bad manners, or cynicism is always a sign
of things no ears have heard, no eyes have seen.
You do not know what wars are going on
down there where the spirit meets the bone.

From The Ways We Touch: Poems. Copyright 1997 by Miller Williams.

I came across this poem a couple of months back when dealing with some people in the office who were particularly abrasive towards me.  Mostly in the sense of “I’m hurting a lot here about things not related to what I’m taking it out on you, but you’re here at the moment so you get all my angry shit.”

I know I shouldn’t have to put up with bullshit.  But I also understand that there are some times when you just have to shut your mouth and take it, and take it gracefully.  Never mind that you’re in a similar scary place.  Complain to a trusted friend about how much it sucks, but smile and show the person love and respect next time you see them.  Despite the fact that it really fucking hurts at the moment.

Because the stuff that they’re saying to you is stuff that you don’t take personally.  It’s not you.  It’s not even them.  It’s a reaction to the pain they’re feeling on such a deep level that they don’t know realize that what they’re saying sucks.

There will be remorse expressed later, and apologies.  But there’s trust as well, and years of friendship.  And a return of compassion when I’m in such a place as well.  And I would rather they say these things to me than to their superiors and end up fired.

Is this thing on?

Or, as alternatively titled: On coming to terms with the fact that I’m technically a “retired” blogger.

I used to be a writer.

Or, well perhaps more appropriately, I used to feel like I was a writer.  I would write such a wide variety of things – stupid, funny, stupidly funny, cutesy romantic, achingly raw and honest… and I would put them on display for other people to read.  Mostly in the time of LiveJournal and early blogging.  I found an audience, mostly in the form of a game, and I was inspired, happy and creative.  I wrote for the audience, and the feedback was fairly instantaneous and I loved every second of it.

Then something happened that devastated that world for me – my journal ended up suspended. While I was able to get most of my writings back… I lost the interactions that I cherished, and most of the community. While it wasn’t my fault it felt like it was for the longest of times.  And I had a really hard time with it.  It took a long time to lose the last piece of the community, and it was just as raw and devastating as the first time it happened.  A piece of me perished with it.

I’ve still tried to work on writing.  I’ve done some NaNoWriMo’s – some more successful than others.  I’ve elaborated on the complicated and extremely detailed dreams that I have. I’ve even taken an Expressive Writing class that I aced.  I was seriously proud of that – it’s not often that I’ll see a 100 on anything class/learning related.

I have had a great amount of events in my life to write about, both positive and negative, big and small.

I had a great experience in January in Dallas, with meeting Marianas Trench twice (three times? Technically….) in one day.  I did a weekendish of 3 more Marianas Trench trips around home.  I’ve had disasters at work that it’s likely best I didn’t talk about anyway.  What about my trips to Cuba with people I’d never met.  Or attending a wedding in Honduras?  Or I’ve got one of those bucket-list trips – an Alaskan Cruise – coming up shortly*.  I’ve got a list of 101 things in 1001 days I’m working on.  Or my apartment where I’ve been making great strides at tackling my hording or not.  Or my parents.  Or the fact that I now regularly attend yoga with a great group of girls.  With dating attempts with this one guy who thought he’d be brutally honest and say that the reason I don’t date much/get asked out a lot is because I’m ugly but that doesn’t bother him, who went full on obsessed I’m-going-to-marry-you never mind that we hadn’t met… Now there’s a story and a half on its own.

And I haven’t written them.

Mind you.  Now I have a list of topics to write about?

Part of it, admittedly, is laziness.  I don’t find the time to do it even though the time is still there.  I find other useless things to do. Like browse Buzzfeed for 2 hours.  Or watch a movie I’ve seen likely 6 times.  find twitter helpful – the 150 characters aren’t a lot but it’s a fun challenge to be creative within them.  And at least I document things that way.

I’d be lying, though, if I said I didn’t miss it.  I do.  I miss spilling my thoughts and feelings onto this virtual paper.

A musician on twitter (who I’d like to be friends with – he’s just a sweet guy who gives me random bits of attention) recently finished a tour where he did a vlog.  He posted a question to his followers that asked if he should continue vlogging.  My response was simple, but it triggered this, so I guess it wasn’t really.

Maybe I haven’t really retired.  Maybe I’ve just been in a period of silence.

I guess we’ll find out.

*note.  By time I get off my ass and actually post this the cruise’ll likely be over.  But hey, what else is new?