Relapse

Every couple of weeks, I take a few steps back. Back to lonely. Back to sad. I go from feeling relatively safe and stable to fragile and destroyed overnight. And no, it’s not a meds thing – my meds are in order – I take a handful of the good stuff each and every morning. They do help. I should have sought psychiatric care sooner than I did, for sure. Better late than never, had I not sought help when I did, I most certainly wouldn’t be here right now – I’d be in a box, maybe waiting for someone to decide where to sprinkle me … the Rocky Mountains? Coeur D’Alene Lake? Maybe just sprinkle me in the dog yard at the shelter.

Last weekend felt okay – I nurtured myself and my cuteaf condo. I went to IKEA for a throw rug, duvet cover, and some trinkets. How I’ve avoided IKEA for nearly 8 months since the move to my place is beyond me. Driving to Hoodbridge is just not on my agenda if I can avoid it. While I was in the area I stopped in the driveway of my old home. The tree out front was still standing (amazing), but the storm door must have blown off in Windmageddon, laying awkwardly in the front yard. The place falls further and further into disrepair, an eyesore for the community and a cold reminder of the disrepair in our relationship.

I’m sure that part of this sadness relates to what was happening around this time last year. Everything was changing, but I didn’t know it yet. Love Bomb was beginning her next chapter and I was just puttering along as if I had nothing to lose, as if we could – as if we WOULD – work through any struggle together, just like we had for nearly 19 years. I felt safe in the consistency of our rather boring lives together while she was out there courting another, someone to take my place before our bed cooled.

The hard part isn’t the being alone, really. I like alone time. I’ve always looked at little cuteaf places like the digs I’m in now and felt a bit envious, and wished that I hadn’t bagged out on my last cuteaf place to move in with Love Bomb.

The hard part is the being replaced – that the person I loved for so long could simply disengage, change gears and never look back. That she gets to carry on as if there weren’t a huge hiccup in her life, because for her, things just got better. She didn’t have to do any of the hard work involved in breaking up. She couldn’t even do the dirty work of actually ending it even though she was the only one that wanted to. She just agreed with me when I asked, “Are you breaking up with me?”, one spring afternoon. “I guess so”, she replied. It’s no wonder I didn’t believe her, trying and trying to make it right, to find solutions, working to improve in every way for several more weeks before she left that horrible letter – the one that pointed out what a miserable person I am to be around.

Maybe I am.

THIS is the person Love Bomb hated … the depressed, hopeless, thoughtless lump of self-doubt, boredom and anxiety that fell into relationship complacency many years ago. I suppose if she were to read this blog she’d think, “same ‘ole, same ‘ole”, thankful that she’s moved on to someone more energetic and driven than I ever was.. Someone with a fun accent and money to burn. I didn’t stand a chance.

Sometimes, I still miss her. I miss my best friend, the person I told my everythings to. I miss having someone to come home to and share my day with. I miss sharing the bed with another human. I miss feeling that I am worthy of love. Beyond that, I miss my family. I miss my dogs the most – two went to me and two went to her – I miss my babies, who now know some other lady as “Mama”.

Sometimes (more often than not) I fucking hate her. I hate her for leaving the way she did. I hate her for throwing me away, so quick to move right along in lustful bliss, never to reflect or mourn, like it meant nothing to her because I mean nothing to her anymore. She went from being my best friend and biggest fan in the blink of an eye – as soon she settled her gaze upon someone else.

I’ve been working so hard to finish up the mourning that only I have been doing. I go out with friends on the regular, I joined a choir, I exercise and take good care of myself and my surroundings, I joined a few dating sites, I started blogging… It’s been a year since Love Bomb lost interest in me and in us, and 10 months since I really started to realize how over it was. They approach their one-year anniversary as I approach one-year of solitude, reflection and remorse. Remorse for all that was lost – 18 years of good and bad, that only I am forced to face.

Dear Self, please bloom soon.

I’m working on it

I know, it’s been a while. It’s not because I’m not trying.

I’ve been researching and putting together what is turning out to be more of a Psychology paper than a blog, and these things take time. If only I had put this much time and effort into an actual Psychology homework assignment 20-some-odd years ago!

Meanwhile, I’m tired and I feel a bit like I’ve been run over by a bus. You see, I’ve cut carbs and sugar from my life, entirely. Call it Atkins. Call it Keto. Call it Paleo. Call it feeling like complete shit for at least a week. That’s where I’m at.

Why? Well, I’ve hit a bit of a plateau with weight loss and I’m just ready for a big change in my day-to-day. There’s no one to hold me back anymore! And hell, pork rinds are actually ON the menu! I plopped a glop of butter (the really nice, yellow, european high-quality kind) in my coffee this morning, along with a slurp of unsweetened almond milk. It was tolerable. (#buttermakeseverythingbetter) I made a riced cauliflower dish for lunch and I’ll be having bacon and eggs for dinner. Tomorrow is Day 3 and from what I hear, the “Keto-flu” may get worse before it gets better. That’ll be fun for my co-workers, who’s names I couldn’t remember today (I’ve only known some of them for 20 years!) – hellllooooooo brain fog – a withdrawal symptom along with headache, some nausea, fatigue and dizziness. These things, I’m told, will pass.

Despite the fact that I don’t feel good, I do, actually, feel good about myself. I like making positive changes. I like making my life better. I like healthy routines and self-care. I am finally becoming the sort of person I always wanted to be. The kind of person who exercises regularly, eats with conscience and purpose, maintains quality friendships by nurturing them, like, all the time, and who takes pride in her CUTEAF condo brimming with light and flowers I buy on the weekly for no one but myself.

That’s not to say I’m not lonely. I am very lonely. No doubt about it. Nor shame.

I still have a bit more “research” to do before I compile my Psychology paper-blog, and so, I’m off … tune in tomorrow or maybe the next day, or the day after that. One of these days, if I manage to get out of this keto-fog… I’m working on it!

16

The Freshmen
The Verve Pipe

Youtube: The Freshmen, The Verve Pipe

For Caroline.

When I was young I knew everything
And she, a punk who rarely ever took advice
Now I’m guilt-stricken, sobbin’ with my head on the floor
Stopped a baby’s breath and a shoe full of rice, no

Can’t be held responsible
She was touchin’ her face
I won’t be held responsible
She fell in love in the first place

For the life of me
I can not remember
What made us think that we were wise and we’d never compromise
For the life of me
I can not believe we’d ever die
For these sins
We were merely freshmen

My best friend took a week’s vacation to forget her
His girl took a week’s worth of valium and slept
And now he’s guilt-stricken, sobbin’
With his head on the floor
Thinks about her now and how he never really wept he said

Can’t be held responsible
She was touchin’ her face
I won’t be held responsible
She fell in love in the first place

For the life of me
I can not remember
What made us think that we were wise and we’d never compromise
For the life of me
I can not believe we’d ever die
For these sins
We were merely freshmen

We tried to wash our hands of all of this
We’d never talk of our lacking relationships
And how we’re guilt-stricken sobbin’ with our heads on the floor
We fell through the ice when we tried not to slip we’d say

Can’t be held responsible
She was touchin’ her face
I won’t be held responsible
She fell in love in the first place

For the life of me
I can not remember
What made us think that we were wise and we’d never compromise
For the life of me
I can not believe we’d ever die
For these sins
We were merely freshmen

I loved you. And that made all the difference.

Can’t stop. Won’t stop.

It’s been a hot minute since I went to the psychiatrist. Doc went on vacation (is she allowed to do that??) last month and I knew I had scheduled something upon her return but it wasn’t until a text reminder arrived on Saturday that I remembered it.

Reply “C” for confirm. Hell yeah, I’ll be there. I need refills! Also – did you read my last entry??

Love Bomb used to snap at gently encourage me to see a psychiatrist whenever I’d get upset about virtually anything, unreasonable or not. Okay, so that time I got into a physical altercation with the lawnmower could have been construed as “unreasonable”, but it’s not like I was hurting anyone besides that self-righteous asshole mower. It’s no secret that I have a hot Irish temper (thanks, ma!) and fairly high expectations that are often unsatisfied. No, it’s not an “anger management issue” (quotations inserted on Love Bomb’s behalf) – it’s just one of those charming things that makes me an exceptionally passionate human. My passion makes me a better being, not inferior nor in need of repair.

I rolled out of bed at my typical slothful 10:15am. Why yes, I am generally expected to be to work by 10:30am, but you know what? I have a 2 minute commute (woo!) and time-clocks working the way they do with a built-in 8 minute grace-period, I most often arrive quite on-time by 10:37am. And yes, it’s also true that I sometimes resemble a recently unwrapped mummy complete with sleepy creases still embedded in my cheeks and I’m just fine with that! I work in an animal shelter, not a beauty salon. Besides, most everyone I work with knows better than to poke this bear before I’ve consumed at least one very strong cup of coffee, and the ones who don’t learn quickly.

Have I mentioned my temper?

Truth be told, I do realize that my sleeping habits tend to be excessive and that is something I discuss with my psychiatrist. I also have Fibromyalgia and Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, so if you’re feeling judge-y about my sleep schedule, just don’t.

I had every intention of heading in to my appointment and having a reasonable adult conversation with my doctor, but it became pretty clear on the 20 minute drive to her office that that wasn’t happening. The sun was shining bright warming this February day to a whopping 70 degrees, windows open, sunglasses on, playlist, set to random, was choosing awesome tunes, and then there was me: ugly-crying all the way to Vienna.

By the time I arrived, I decided I no longer wanted to go in the office for the whole 15 minutes I had reserved. I had finally pulled myself together and I just didn’t feel like crying anymore. Fortunately, it’s clear I’m not the only one who does this by the two boxes of tissue within arms reach of that familiar soft, leather chair. Still, at 8 months into our work together, I hoped I had improved enough to avoid accruing a small mountain of soggy tissues, that, despite their strategic placement, I couldn’t find a trash can to deposit them in, so I wadded them into my hand, one after the other after the other.

Doc: “So, what’s been going on? How were your Holidays?”
Self: “Well, you know, every solitary first is tricky, but I got through it.”
Doc: “I’m glad to hear that. And more recently? It sure is a beautiful day outside!”
Self: <sob>
Doc: “What is it about a pretty day like today that makes you sad?”
Self: “It just kind of reminds me of last spring, and all that happened last year.”
Doc: “I see. You’re coming up on a year now since your breakup.”
Self: “Yeah, I mean, it’s only February, so this is gonna be a long spring, but April 6th was pivotal, April 23rd was too, and then May 13th was when she officially did away with me.”

She nodded some more and reassured me that what I was feeling was okay and normal; Every first is a struggle and that may also be true of seconds and thirds. GREAT!

Suddenly, fifteen minutes didn’t seem like enough time to cover all the topics I felt needed covering, i.e.: all the things that have contributed to my recent crap-ass mood. My birthday two weeks ago. Valentine’s Day. Even the fact that my bank information was recently stolen and just how vulnerable that makes one feel, not to mention all the work involved in fixing it while also making sure the bills get paid.

Doc: “So, it’s been almost a year. Have you started to consider dating? Does that interest you?”

I put myself out there on a couple of dating apps because, apparently, that’s how a lot of singles do this. For the most part, I’ve been discouraged. The dating pool, in my opinion, leaves a lot to be desired at the geriatric age of 43. Isn’t there some theory that men get more distinguished as they age? Lies!

That’s not to say that I’m perfect. Here’s what my profile should read:

Age: Too old for this crap
Sexuality: Somewhere on the spectrum
Body type: Not terrible, but definitely enjoys tacos

It’s entirely possible that I need to lower my expectations when it comes to finding a suitable partner-in-crime. Perhaps I should reach out to the guy I met for drinks a couple of weeks ago — the one who sort of reminded me of my pop. Maybe he’ll appear less dad-like dressed casually … ? Then again, I may just put this whole dating thing on the back burner for a spell. After all, I don’t require someone to fill my heart or my bed to make me whole.

It’s never about finding the one. It’s always about becoming the one. -Sylvester McNutt
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Your bed is still warm from us and your mouth still tastes of mine. I hope she likes the warmth I’ve left. I hope she likes my second hand taste. @thedominantpoet

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I wish I could say that the 15 minutes I spent with the doc fixed all my woes. Unfortunately, it just doesn’t work that way. I wish it did. Although I’m not actively suicidal, I flirt with passive attempts at self-destruction like not wearing my seatbelt. And so, a tweak here and a tweak there of those morning meds that make my life more tolerable, and check in next month.

I may wake up late and ruminate, I may stick my head in the sand some days, but I will keep getting up (eventually) and showing up (in due time). There’s no way around doing the hard work when you’re left behind, and so I will.

Can’t stop. Won’t stop…

@decoratuscurious

Shit-list

I had planned to be on a date tonight, but apparently, I musta offended the other half of the arrangement because I’ve texted a few times … <chirp> <chirp>.

I don’t like to be on anyone’s shit-list, but honestly, the girl was already clingy and we hadn’t even met in person, yet. When I wouldn’t respond to her texts, like, immediately, she’d get sensitive – “Are you ok”? Uh, I am at work, it’s a Friday afternoon, calm down. She sent texts and photos of the event she was attending all weekend. When we discussed her return to the area, she suggested we have dinner together on both Sunday and Monday nights. I brushed that off and leaned in to Monday. Random texts kept coming in, topics ranging from “do you like leather?”, to “is it snowing where you are?”, and finally, last night: “May I call you?”, to which I didn’t reply. I texted this morning, apologized, and explained that I hadn’t been feeling well last night, followed by another text about where we should meet for dinner. It’s 6pm now, and nada.

In that case, I’ll go ahead and pop open a beer now.

If you’re going to be that weird about an un-replied-to text on a Sunday night, well, I don’t need that sort of drama in my life.

Perhaps she already rented the U-Haul. Fucking lesbians.

So, now, here I sit, conflicted and sad. Maybe this whole dating thing, even this being partnered thing isn’t my deal, at least, not anymore. There’s no doubt that I’m lonely, but I’ll admit that the thought of sharing time and space with anyone isn’t terribly appealing these days either

It’s a conflict, for sure. I sit here alone so often I’ve actually worn a solitary indent into the couch.

It’s hard all the time, but tonight feels worse than most. I sit in my crevice and wonder if I simply deserve this pain, and why … because I wanted a baby? Was that not painful enough? Can we call it a fucking draw, now?

I wish I could vaporize, I’d turn myself into a pink haze and disappear. No more pain. No more hate. No more jealousy. No more sadness. No more. Going. Going.

Gone.

A first for everything. Valentines.

In honor of the first Valentine’s Day I’ll be sharing with only my cat, I shall now present lyrics to just some of the songs I’ve been known to play on repeat as I’ve rolled into a fetal ball over the course of the last 9 months.

Anything in italics is an additional insert by Yours Truly.

Oh, and if you just aren’t into lyrics right now, feel free to scroll. There’s more. (But these are really good songs, yo.)


Youtube video: Hate Me

Blue October
Hate Me

I have to block out thoughts of you so I don’t lose my head
They crawl in like a cockroach leaving babies in my bed
Dropping little reels of tape to remind me that I’m alone
Playing movies in my head that make a porno feel like home
There’s a burning in my pride a nervous bleeding in my brain
An ounce of peace is all I want for you will you never call again
And will you never say that you loved me just to put it in my face
And will you never try to reach me
It is I that wanted space

Hate me today
Hate me tomorrow
Hate me for all the things I didn’t do for you

Hate me in ways
Yeah ways hard to swallow
Hate me so you can finally see what’s good for you

I’m sober now for three (six) whole months
It’s one accomplishment that you (never) helped me with
The one thing that always tore us apart is the one thing I won’t touch again
In my sick way I want to thank you for holding my head up late at night
While I was busy waging wars on myself you were trying to stop the fight
You never doubted my warped opinions on things like suicidal hate
You made me compliment myself when it was way too hard to take
So I’ll drive so fucking far away that I never cross your mind
And do whatever it takes in your heart to leave me behind

Hate me today
Hate me tomorrow
Hate me for all the things I didn’t do for you

Hate me in ways
Yeah ways hard to swallow
Hate me so you can finally see what’s good for you

And with a sad heart I say bye to you and wave
Kicking shadows on the street for every mistake that I had made
And like a baby boy I never was a man
Until I saw your brown eyes cry and I held your face in my hand
And then I fell down yelling, “Make it go away!”
Just make a smile come back and shine just like it used to be
And then I whispered, “How can you do this to me?”

Hate me today
Hate me tomorrow
Hate me for all the things I didn’t do for you

Hate me in ways
Yeah ways hard to swallow
Hate me so you can finally see what’s good for you


Youtube video: Million Years Ago

Adele
Million Years Ago

I only wanted to have fun
Learning to fly learning to run
I let my heart decide the way
When I was young
Deep down I must have always known
That this would be inevitable
To earn my stripes I’d have to pay
And bare my soul

I know I’m not the only one
Who regrets the things they’ve done
Sometimes I just feel it’s only me
Who can’t stand the reflection that they see
I wish I could live a little more
Look up to the sky not just the floor
I feel like my life is flashing by
And all I can do is watch and cry
I miss the air, I miss my friends
I miss my mother, I miss it when
Life was a party to be thrown
But that was a million years ago

When I walk around all of the streets
Where I grew up and found my feet
They can’t look me in the eye
It’s like they’re scared of me
I try to think of things to say
Like a joke or a memory
But they don’t recognize me now
In the light of day

I know I’m not the only one
Who regrets the things they’ve done
Sometimes I just feel it’s only me
Who never became who they thought they’d be
I wish I could live a little more
Look up to the sky not just the floor
I feel like my life is flashing by
And all I can do is watch and cry
I miss the air, I miss my friends
I miss my mother, I miss it when
Life was a party to be thrown
But that was a million years ago
A million years ago


Youtube video: You Oughta Know

Alanis Morrisette
You Oughta Know

I want you to know that I am happy for you
I wish nothing but the best for you both
A younger version of me
Is she perverted like me
Would she go down on you in a theater
Does she speak eloquently
And would she have your baby
I’m sure she’d make a really excellent mother

Cause the love that you gave that we made
Wasn’t able to make it enough for you to be open wide
And every time you speak her name
Does she know how you told me you’d hold me until you died
Till you died, but you’re still alive

And I’m here to remind you
Of the mess you left when you went away
It’s not fair to deny me
Of the cross I bear that you gave to me
You, you, you oughta know

You seem very well
Things look peaceful
I’m not quite as well
I thought you should know
Did you forget about me, Ms. Duplicity
I hate to bug you in the middle of dinner
It was a slap in the face
How quickly I was replaced
And are you thinking of me when you fuck her?

Cause the joke that you laid in the bed
That was me and I’m not gonna fade as soon as you close your eyes
And every time I scratch my nails down someone else’s back I hope you feel it
Well, can you feel it?

So I’m here to remind you
Of the mess you left when you went away
It’s not fair to deny me
Of the cross I bear that you gave to me
You, you, you oughta know


Nearly a year of solitary firsts, check.

God, I hope this is the last of the intensely painful stuff, at least for this first year. Fortunately, I don’t anticipate that President’s Day or Easter will be heart-wrecking in the way that Thanksgiving, Christmas, and Valentine’s Day have been.

My friend Kim assures me, “you’ll get your own firsts” but it doesn’t really cushion the blow. Don’t get me wrong, because I’m all for having my own firsts with someone special, but I continue to wonder … why is it that Love Bomb is somehow exempt from these feelings of loss, loneliness, and jealousy? My firsts won’t bother her; she won’t pay no nevermind. Only I must struggle through holidays and, uh, everything alone. How does she get away that?

Must be nice. And I guess that’s the point.

Must be nice to be you. (@secondtongue)

It’s like a game only she gets to win.

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@kaitlyn.n.lentulo

Love. I’ll wait for it. I’ll be ready for it. And this stupid Hallmark Holiday won’t matter for shit. The love that’s coming will be celebrated every damn day.

That’ll do, Valentine’s Day 2018. That’ll do.

Grief and Valentines

There’s something especially dread-worthy about Valentine’s Day this year – my first V-Day alone since I was pubescent. Not that I remember doing anything particularly memorable for this Hallmark Holiday in many, many years. It’s a similar feeling to New Year’s at the stroke of midnight – like, I know what you’re doing out there … without me. I actually do remember how exciting firsts are with a new luh-huh-ver (channeling Adele) – major holidays, that New Year’s midnight kiss, “Our First Valentine’s Day”. Gah, especially if you’re both Love Bombs. It’s sure to be an extravaganza! I’m imagining flowers (delivered to work for ultimate impact), cards, chocolates, bubble baths (I seem to recall a trail of rose petals that led from the front door all the way to the tub back when weeeee were young (yep, Adele again) and celebrating our first V-Day). And there will be sex. More sex than I’ve had in years. YEARS I TELL YOU.

Left behind is a shitty place to be on Valentine’s Day.

Maybe it wouldn’t hurt so bad if I didn’t know how they relish in my pain. Social media is a real kick in the ass in this modern age of breaking up. Well, that is before I was fully blocked. Blocking, I discovered, was often strategic. I’d be blocked for a bit *until* a flower delivery and then someone would make sure that I could see that bidness. Honestly, I don’t need to do my own research (er, mild stalking?), someone typically sends me a screenshot or mentions a particularly intriguing (or revolting) post. Love Bomb and I share over 100 friends on Facebook, and there are people looking out for me, many of whom are not impressed with how quickly and easily I was replaced.

But New Girl and Love Bomb, they’re laughing AT me and at my expense, “Haha’ing” on posts that, clearly, are about me. Strategic.

Love Bomb didn’t do that shit to “Caroline”, whom she dumped – for me. It was clear all along that she actually had a sense of remorse, guilt, and a certain degree of sorrowful respect for the one she left behind with no explanation or warning. Granted, we didn’t have social media back then (because OLD), but I certainly never laughed at or talked shit about Caroline – ever. I felt guilty and horrible with the knowledge that she was left alone, traded in and replaced. And I … I was the home wrecker. I desperately hoped she might find it in her heart to forgive me someday. We were civil, but was there forgiveness? In hindsight, no, I don’t think so. Not with the knowledge I not only understand, but now share about just how terribly it hurts to be replaced without so much as a real conversation. She was just better at maintaining a friendship with Love Bomb, despite me. She was a better, stronger person than I. She was better at hiding the pain.

Love Bomb and Caroline had a special, undeniable connection. If you couldn’t tell by looking thru just a few of the 9 years worth of photos of a life they shared, it was unmistakable when it came to Caroline’s passing.

Yes, Caroline died. In hospice care – in a room overcrowded with other dying people.

She should have died in her home. The home they purchased and made theirs. The home I was sharing with Love Bomb at the time. A home I never really felt comfortable in. It wasn’t mine.

The morning Caroline died started much like any other. Love Bomb got in the shower while I enjoyed a few more minutes of shut-eye. Her shower was brief; she dressed quickly. She came in to the bedroom and announced that she had to go see Caroline before work. She said she felt an urgent need to go to hospice, like, right now. And so she did.

In some cosmic sort of way Caroline summoned Love Bomb, waited for her, and moments later, she passed away.

I, for one, feel horrendously guilty, and I wonder if it ever occurs to Love Bomb that she threw away a relationship with someone that she was genuinely cosmically connected to. She brushed it off, “everything happens for a reason”, and explained: “I couldn’t have managed that loss if we were still together”. It would have been devastating, of course. Maybe she’s right – maybe she couldn’t have dealt with that loss – she won’t manage the loss of people who are still living and breathing. She will NOT be alone.

Caroline, I’m so sorry that I was a part of your loss, and that by participating in an adolescent game of passion, I took so much more than just your best friend and partner. I wish we all would have done things differently. Soon, I’ll do an entry about the things we tell ourselves to make ourselves feel better in light of the crappy things we do and say. I think back on those excuses now and can hardly stand myself. My only solace is that I’ve done the hard work to let the grief in; I’ve reflected upon, grown, and learned from my mistakes. I did not appreciate that my 22 year old self could actually change lives and futures forever. I was thoughtless and impulsive, and 22 was my excuse. At 43, one birthday more than you ever enjoyed, Caroline, I get it now, and I’m sorry.

I wonder what you did that first Valentine’s Day alone in 1999 as I followed a trail of rose petals to my tub. Are you laughing at me now? Do you laugh just like they do?

Some things you maybe didn’t know…

In an effort to be more versatile in my bloggings, for my next act, I shall assemble an assortment of things you maybe didn’t know about me:

Socially awkward right from the start, in the first grade it was not at all uncommon for me to use recess as an opportunity to escape through some poorly placed fence posts and head on home, over a mile away. I pulled this little trick off two or three times before an attentive administrator figured me out.

In another attempt to get out of school, I once convinced my mother that I had a sore throat and couldn’t go. Well, rather than let me watch Three’s Company all day as I intended, she dragged me to a doctor who proceeded to approach my face with a 6″ long cotton swab. Helllll NO! I’ve always had an irrational fear of choking, so upon realizing just where doc was about to stick that swab, I rebutted (See what I did there? You’d think that’s where he was going to put it, wouldn’t you?), started crying, and confessed that I had been faking it all along. The doctor, unamused, swabbed my tonsils anyway <gag>. The next day, thwarted, I was back in school. But it wasn’t long before the school nurse interrupted class to pull me out. “Grab your things”, she said. Lo-and-behold, I had a raging case of Strep, no symptoms.

My family moved every 2 years while I was growing up, so we never had pets that were more complicated or challenging to relocate than fish or parakeets. Gordon the goldfish committed suicide by jumping out of the tank, so that was that. We did have a number of parakeets, all of whom were named Mr. Gregory Peck. Peck II was the most awesome parakeet ever, but my heart always longed for something more – furry. Now that I’m an adult (debatable), it’s pretty established that I have a “gift” with animals, so I’ve dedicated nearly all of my adult life to working with them. Now my poor my mom feels guilty for dismissing my near-constant pleading for a furry thing. Here is a drawing of Peck II, circa 1982.

(have patience, photo is coming)

Favorite sound: Purrrrrrrr. And rain. A rainy, lazy Sunday shared with a purr-happy Torti? Sublime.

I L-O-V-E me a Tortoiseshell cat. My soul-critter has tortitude and so do I. Here are my two favorites:

creoleramona

Creole & Ramona

 

 

 

 

 

Favorite animal (beside my dear Torti-cat): The Virginia Opossum! (Didelphis virginiana) North America’s ONLY marsupial, she carries her babies joeys in a pouch and his testicles are on his belly! When we get calls for Opossums hit by a car in the spring and summer it’s considered a true emergency – we must check the pouch for babies! There can be a max of 13 babies stuck to 13 teats – don’t pull ’em! You’ve gotta release the suction they have on the nip or you’ll literally pull their insides out by pulling them off. One last fun fact: The Virginia Opossum has the most teeth of any mammal in North America. All the better to scare you with! Their best defense is to play dead with their mouths wide open in an effort to show you how scary they are! Observe how frighteningly cute …

opossumopossum too

 

Fierce!

 

 

 

 

This blog entry is full of great opossum tidbits, and check out the whole enchilada at Birch Nature because it’s amazing!

(OMG, I JUST INSERTED LINKS, Y’ALL! Look at me being all blog savvy! How about thaaa?!)

I am a Wildlife Rehabilitator permitted by the VA Department of Game and Inland Fisheries to rehabilitate grey squirrels, southern flying squirrels, chipmunks, and bats. I’d have to research the by-laws, but I bet the condo association would frown upon wildlife rehab off the ole balcony, so I mostly help other rehab-type friends when they go out of town or just need a break. I also get to hone those skills every spring, summer and fall just by going to work. Which reminds me, Spring is coming. Crap. But also, Yay! But then Crap. A 9-month busy season is drawing neigh…

baby bat
This baby is a Big Brown. So Big.

I asked my step-father to adopt me in my 20’s – on Father’s Day. He had always been my Dad, he stepped right up when I was only two. Odd how a handful of court documents and fancy stamps later, my biological father was literally erased from my existence, not so much as an * to indicate him anywhere on my new birth certificate.

this cute family
When it comes to cute families, mine takes the taco.

Once, I flew. Allll the way across the bathroom in the 4th grade. Jumped off the sink as I had done a million times before for the very first time, in an effort to swing on the exposed pipes that darted through the basement ceiling. I blame peer pressure and that show-off, Mary Lou Retton. My gymnastics career was forever thwarted one afternoon when I crashed to the floor just inches from a mouthful of toilet, stall #3. I broke my arm, but must have been in shock because I just wanted to walk it off and go back to class. Meanwhile, my hand was just dangling, so we flopped it around a little. I don’t recall any pain.

Favorite flavor: Banana. Artificial banana, a plus! Banana runts. Banana popsicles. Banana bread (no nuts!), Frozen chocolate bananas. Banana pancakes. Banana taffy. Banana tic-tacs! Damn you, delicious tic-tac, you mini minion of yumminess – you owe me a crown!

minions-tic-tac

Favorite food: Bring me all the Mexican food.

I work in an animal shelter and despite the fact that it’s considered “low-rung on the totem pole”, my heart is in the kennels with the animals. I live work behind a desk these days in large part due to a nasty cat bite I suffered back in 2013. I went to Urgent Care right away and started antibiotics within hours, but by the weekend my finger looked more like a purple penis than a digit. Long medical story short, I developed a bone infection (osteomyelitis) and had to get a PICC line so I could complete a 6-week protocol of IV antibiotics from home. I kinda had the trots for 6 full weeks, but my skin was glowing and clear, so you know, compromise.

I’ve been in/felt three earthquakes … 1987: Anchorage, Alaska: 4.1. 2001: Seattle, Washington: 6.8. 2011 Arlington, Virginia: 5.8.

For some hateful reason, I’ve been on the scene of 2 fatal motorcycle accidents. The first I watched in my rear-view mirror. The person in the car didn’t see the approaching bike and made a left behind me. The bike T-boned the car and the guy flipped through the air like a rag doll. Unlike just about everyone else who just stood there with their chins on the ground, I ran over and tried to comfort him. You know, I work with animals, and in the stress of that moment, all I could think of to offer him comfort was, “good boy”. He looked at me for a minute or two before his gaze changed and then, his gaze looked through me. The second accident I pulled up on. I noticed 2 people laying in the road, bike on it’s side. The rider had hit a pedestrian, who was clearly in worse shape than she was. I ran over and started CPR compressions right away, but blood squirted from his ears with every push. I knew he was already gone, but I wasn’t going to regret not trying. Not this time. And Love Bomb wondered why I got so upset when she and the Master Manipulator went out and bought a bike on a whim one afternoon while I was at work.

I been in love af with everyone I’ve ever slept with.

If roller-skating were an Olympic sport, I’d have a wall-full of gold medals. I am seriously good at rolling around on 4 wheels.

Do not approach before coffee. I don’t do breakfast unless it’s lunchtime. Or dinnertime. But not in the morning. Blarf.

That’s all I’ve got for you today, kids. I hope you’ve enjoyed this little stroll down Mazie’s Lane.

Leaving: when you gotta go, you gotta go. Bonus content: Dating app fails

I was supposed to go on a date last night. I chickened out and cancelled.

It’s the first date with a boy I’ve arranged. Somehow, meeting a guy for the first time feels more scary and less comfortable than when meeting a girl. Not that I’ve met up with a lot of girls. Uh, just one … we “went out” three times: once out to lunch, once to her place for brunch (the only one who really seemed interested in humping me was her bulldog), and once, we went out for a couple’s massage (oolala). There was flirting, there were innuendos, there were even suggestive photos, but nothing physical happened beyond exchanging hugs hello and goodbye. That’s probably just as well – she is polyamorous and looking for a “unicorn”. I’ve learned recently that the unicorn is the third party in an established poly relationship. Intriguing, but not what I’m looking for, I didn’t feel the required chemistry, and honestly, she scares me a lil bit with her experience and openness.

Guess what? I figured out how to insert pictures all on my own … a little click here, a little click there, ta-da! Pictures. Here are a few screenshots of the type of people I seem to attract on dating apps.

Enjoy…

Example No. 1creepy 1

“Fine, thank you. You look like a serial killer!”

Example No. 2creepy 3

These sorts of messages, unfortunately, are more the norm than the exception. He would be right, lots of people inquire about this. Unicorns are IN, and quite popular. Alas, I am not a Unicorn.

Example No. 3creepy 2

Newsflash: If your profile includes a shirtless bathroom selfie, I’m definitely not interested. Is that belly-button lint??

That, friends, is what it’s like to be in the dating scene these days. Not pretty, no? Nope.

This is not going to be easy.

I’ll do my research. I won’t settle for less than everything. I can check out as many as I like for as long as I like.

Love bomb, on the other hand, literally jumped on the first vulnerable girl she could smother; a girl who “needs fixing” – something Love Bomb LOVES in a partner, she’ll be the first to tell you she’s a “fixer” in all means of ways. New girl, I imagine, must have felt desperate for affection and validation, living with her soon-to-be ex-husband for a year (or so, I certainly don’t know the dates). They bonded over broken relationships. Doesn’t strike me as healthy, but hey, when you’re fucking desperate …

“Don’t expect two storms to meet and create anything less than an epic disaster.” (-Britt Powers)

Less than a year in, they’re infatuated, I know, but will it last? And if it does last, will that be because they felt they had something to prove? I was the original “flash in the pan”. Nearly 19 years, and it’s possible that our relationship was little more than a “I’ll show you” response, long expired. Love Bomb explained it in her Dear John letter -that there were many occasions we might have chosen to break up over the years but she stuck it out because she had to “prove them wrong” – all those family and friends who warned her , “It’ll never last”. Soooo, we stayed together out of spite and a dogmatic need to be ‘right’?! That’s a shitty fucking reason to hold someone down. And should there be ANY question, I don’t fantasize about their demise because I have desire to have Love Bomb back,  I just think it would be awesome if she actually got a taste of how if feels to be the one left alone, to have her efforts be regarded as “futile and weird”, to go on because there’s no other choice.

For all the times she could have left, or thought maybe she should have left, it’s funny, I can’t remember one time prior to April 2017 that I had any inkling that Love Bomb might consider leaving. If anyone was ever anxious to leave, it was always me.

Leaving. If I were journaling in a spiral notebook, I’d be drawing a fat arrow right now tracing back to the last text from Love Bomb, “The only way I could change was to leave. The only reason you even consider[ed] hard work is because we ended. I[t] had to in order to move forward”. I figure they’re just typos, but the little goal posts [..] indicate what was actually typed. If you think I’ve misinterpreted the translation, let me know in the comments.  🙂

So, a couple of things:

1. She didn’t “leave”. She sought out and seduced someone else, ensuring her coupled status would remain, as always, unchanged. Never to struggle alone, she couldn’t leave me until she replaced me. That’s the order of things when you’re the Love Bomb and things get difficult.

2. I not only considered, but single-handedly started the hard work because I felt we were worth it, but she was already long gone. She cheated not just physically, but more importantly, emotionally with a new partner and never considered the hard work at all, not for one second. She just wanted to “have fun”. That sounds ridiculous coming from an adult, especially the Love Bomb I used to know. In those moments, she had not only fallen out of love, she was cruel and mean in ways I’d never seen from her and I wondered who she was. Sort of like how it felt when Kevin gave me the suicide directive (aka: gofuckyourself) it felt like, how can a person be so mean to someone they used to love? I did a terrible thing, (if you’re new, sorry, you’re gonna have to keep up) a meaningless, disrespectful, uber-selfish thing, but it was never about hurting anyone. It was about nostalgia and sperm. She, on the other hand, wanted to hurt me. And she did.

3. Recap, since you’ve been reading a while: “I[t] had to in order to move forward”. As written with “it”, I can’t figure out how that would make sense. “It” had to be considered? Or, “I” had to … had to what? I had to cheat/remove/replace in order to move forward? I had to end it in order to move forward? Either are crap. She’s not moving forward, she’s regressing, running from problems with her house and the associated crap she’s acquired in nearly 30 years in one home (walk away, leave said crap for someone else to deal with), running from problems with money (hello, Bankruptcy, how long has it been, old chap?), running from a long-term relationship that hit a downright ugly patch (disengage, change gears, redirect).

And why wouldn’t she run? For someone who considers herself to be unlucky, I just don’t see it. She never even mourned the loss of our relationship, she simply disengaged, changed gears, and redirected all of her time and attention to someone else. I know knew her so well, I could tell something was wrong, like, the day it happened. I went back and took screenshots of our texts over the entire month of April sometime in May when the shit was really going down. I wanted to see if I could put my finger on when everything went wrong. There was an invite to go out for drinks with the other managers, April .. (I’m not up for looking at it, but it was right around the 10th) and she was excited to go. I encouraged her, said to have a good time. She was thereafter impossible to reach and didn’t come home until 2am. It was just a couple of days before, on April 6, that Love Bomb and New Girl had their first .. God, what do I call it? Romantic Interaction? Infatuation Confession? Whatever it was <gag>, 2am became Love Bomb’s usual come-home time, that is, when she came home at all. And I let it happen because I simply could not fathom that she was cheating on me, if not with her body, then certainly with her mind in anticipation of initiating another virgin U-Haul Lesbian.

Love Bomb had reasons to leave, but stuck it out for alllll of my beautiful, fertile years because she had something to prove. And when the shit really got sticky, she didn’t leave so much as she wrapped herself up in the affections (and gifts) of another, never to endure the humbling pain and loneliness I’ve had the pleasure of surviving the past 9 months.

If she needed to leave, she should have left. If you gotta go, you gotta go. If it was more complicated than that, she should have taken me to counseling, not the bedroom. Yes, I know it was more complicated than that, and I’ll accept my fair share of blame. I should have insisted on therapy in October. I was ashamed and embarrassed to admit my dirty deeds to anyone other than Love Bomb, especially if she didn’t seem to want to press the issue. God, for a good several weeks/couple of months I actually thought my affair improved our relationship! (Can you say, “naïve”?) Looking back at that time I think, of COURSE you needed to go to a couple’s counselor! What’s the matter with you? I knew it somewhere inside, but you know, I resigned to being in this relationship for 18+ years and I got too comfortable. I felt wholly, utterly and completely safe. I lived with my best friend, and although sexual contact had become somewhat of a rarity, it just didn’t even occur to me that she could would go out and find someone else.

It happened so quickly. And with someone she used to dislike, even dread working with.

Well, nothing is happening quickly on my end, but there is a new message from the guy I canceled on yesterday … he wants to know how I’m feeling. Feeling much better, C., whoever you are. Maybe we’ll try again this weekend. I have a birthday coming up.

 

Blog with a purpose

What am I doing here?

What is the purpose of this blog?

Recently, suspicious as I am, I thought I felt the presence of prying eyes. One may have picked up on a downright snarky tone. (No, Really?) And it got me thinking about why I’m here. Why I decided to start writing here and who this blog is for.

I always journaled growing up. Always. All the time. I still have “My First Diary”, it’s up in the far reaches of my hall closet, beyond a virtual library-closetful of spiral notebooks. My very first entry was scribbled in 1981, three short sentences about our very first family parakeet. We got a parakeet. He is blue. His name is Mr. Peck.

I journaled regularly throughout college. I always gravitated to my journal when things got tough, a way to organize and draw connections between all of the racing thoughts and ideas that stream through my head. Things would settle and the journaling would taper off, but it picked back up when things got hard and worth a good thinking-on. I’m glad I did it for as many years as I did. But then, I stopped.

I don’t know if it’s that I was comfortable enough that I didn’t feel the need to journal for a long time, nearly the entire time I was with Love Bomb (excluding the time I was in Seattle for 9 months). It’s too bad, it would have been such an ideal time to journal -or blog- as I struggled through infertility. I’ve always found that putting it all out there on paper helped me sort through the sometimes hypomanic thoughts and reasonings as to why and how I’m hurting, struggling, growing, learning, forgiving, reaching out and letting go. When I found myself at my very lowest point this past summer, I went straight to a Rite Aid to buy a 1-subject, college ruled spiral notebook – the BEST kind of journal. It’s blue.

This past summer, I spent hours upon hours frantically journaling – perched awkwardly on the steering wheel of the car, on the couch at J&J’s, on the back patio, and of course, in bed before falling crying myself to sleep. The words poured out, sometimes just fleeting thoughts or ideas at a time, scribbles, bullet points and arrows swirled the edges of the page that I hoped I could figure out, like shorthand in college, sometime later.

Blogging really sort of hit the scene in the early 2000’s. So I’m like, a decade and a half late, but I feel like blogging is just sort of a graduation to how modern journaling is done. I can use the remaining storage in the hall closet for typical hall closet things like paper towels and reusable shopping bags without having to store more journals, which, if it wasn’t clear, take up a significant amount of space.

Do I sense a question from the peanut gallery? Why not toss the old journals? Well, part of me would feel defeated; I mean, I’ve carried them with me this long, since I was 6, why part with them now? I have the closet space. Besides, they contain my entire life’s story.

Despite the fact that there’s nothing wrong with just having a diary blog, I also feel like there needs to be a bigger purpose to my ramblings. Like, blogging shouldn’t be just my personal come-to-jesus moments. There could be an audience beyond myself and although there’s sure to be some snark, I don’t want my blog to be one big bitch-fest! I’d like it to be relatable, perhaps even capable of helping someone who’s struggling with an ugly breakup/divorce someday.

Beyond all of that, I’m using this blog to improve my writing skills. Shorthand blurbs, swirly arrows and exclamation points driven deep into the page help my mind to unravel, but don’t improve skills. I admire expressive writing, and I’d like to get better at it. You only improve by doing it. So, why not here? Besides, I type faster than I scribble.

Lastly, I’ve decided to keep the blog public for now. It’s for no one but me, and I can’t figure out why anyone I know would come across it. I don’t know if any of the views/visitors I’ve had so far know me, nor do I know how anyone would come across it. Honestly, I’m not even certain of the difference between a view and a visitor. Which reminds me, I also need to figure out how to insert photos into an entry.

I’ve changed most names in the interest of privacy, with the purposeful exception of Kevin, who can bite me. Publishing my entries forces me to be fully vulnerable, and work harder to actually resolve problems, rather than just ruminate on them. I will continue to think about my “target audience” and how I can relate this blog to something more than just, well, bitching and drawing conclusions.

Got an idea? Let me know in the comments if you like. While you’re here, could you tell me how to insert pictures into the body of my entries? I look forward to streamlining this forum into something useful to someone beyond myself. In the meantime, enjoy the bitch-fest!