Winter – Depression & Crohns rear their Collective Heads

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Winter has always been rough for me. My depression and anxiety tend to get worse, usually from late December until spring. Usually my Crohns Disease acts up (my anxiety levels up my symptoms) as well. However, I tend to look at it like this: There’s no better time to be sick and depressed than winter. Why? Because fuck the cold and snow, that’s why.

It’s not big deal though, although I hope my (few) friends understand why I’ve been so distant lately. Sometimes it is just hard to push through the brain fog. So for now, I’ll remain cuddled up on my couch with my books and Reddit.

Life other than all of that is alright.

The kid is doing fantastic, she’s not the biggest fan of school this year, but she’s doing great. She’s got one hell of a personality now, she’s like my little punk rocker. She’s super open minded and accepting of others, and thanks to the current political climate has a firm dislike of racists and nazi-scum. She asked me to give her an undercut the other day, so now she has the underside of her ponytail buzzed and the bottom 4″ of her hair is sea green/blue. She is definitely something else, and despite the daily video calls with her other little gremlin friends, I am indefinitely proud of her.

The boyfriend has been job hopping. Trying to find one that is a good fit for him, might as well take advantage of the interviews and look for a great position and company to work for. Things are going great with us, so nothing new there.

Our Animal House has been good too. Vader (our neighbor’s old cat) has settled into the house fantastically. Smudge is still not too fond of him, but they get along. I do have to say that I love Vader dearly. He is such a sweetheart, I couldn’t ever imagine losing him even though he hasn’t been here nearly as long as Smudge or Thumbs.

Things calmed down with Jon’s ex. That’s something I’m glad is basically over. She had denied him visitation over the summer (I guess she got angry that we questioned her parenting choices and called her bluff on abandoning her daughter at our house). So we took her to court, and her lawyers basically told her to go kick rocks and give us our visitation, do half the driving and let Jon in on all decisions. Unfortunately Jon is still stuck paying for the son that is not biologically his (Ex cheated on him, got pregnant, tried to pin it on Jon) as Pennsylvania will not cancel child support, despite paternity unless another man takes his place. Unfortunately they do not require her to work, so she’s still living off of CS & Welfare. Alas. Just like with my daughters dad NOT paying child support, EVER.. we are completely okay with the kids knowing who does what for them, and seeing us as examples. Neither of us will bad mouth our exes in front of our children, but we also don’t lie.

As for me? I’m still on hiatus from work. I’ve interviewed with a few places over the phone, and turned down several in person interviews. I’m not sure what my plan is for right now, but our situation works for us and I’m enjoying finally being able to spend (forced) time with the kiddo even if she’s at the age where she’s not so keen on it. Ha.

As the months drag on, I still do not regret quitting my last job. I’m reminded almost daily by Timehop showing me the posts about how miserable I was from the last 8 years. I may have my normal depression and anxiety, but I am no longer having daily anxiety attacks about going into that toxic environment. I hear from old coworkers and work contacts every once in a while, and it seems like it hasn’t gotten much better beyond a crackdown. All I can say there folks is I learned a life lesson, one that I’ve drilled into Jon (as he walked from one recently in order to take another higher position) and one that I’m teaching my daughter. Work is work, don’t let them destroy you and your health, because at the end of the day, you are expendable. No job is worth being miserable. Not even one you devoted the better part of your 20’s and early 30’s to it.

So beyond all that rambling, hey. At least I’m writing again. I have been slowly working myself into writing again. Even if it’s just free writing a few sentences a day. I’ve just got to get into the habit. Writing is the easiest way to clear my mind and lift my mood.

On that note. I’m off to eat some chocolate and cuddle with the pupper.

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Coffee In the Mornings

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There is nothing I like better than a quiet morning and a cup of coffee.  It gives me some time to relax and get ready for the day.  Kind of setting the day off on the the right foot.  During the summer it’s even nicer, before work I’ll sit out on the front step and drink my coffee there.  Usually it is dead silent still (I get up for work pretty early) and I can enjoy nature.  Winter puts a damper on that, but on the weekends, I’ll usually get up a bit early and relax on the couch and read the news.

Coffee has always equaled peace to me.  A time to wind down and clear my head.  I think I’ve been drinking coffee since I was 14 years old, and it still tastes the best with a journal and pen laid out in front of me.  I’ve found it hard to write on occasion if I don’t have a hot cup of coffee, it’s become that much of a routine in my life (Well gee, after 12 years I guess that was to be expected).

Sitting down with a cup of coffee has kept my brain in line more times that I’d like to admit.  When I’m upset or stressed out, sometimes the solution is a few quiet moments and some rich coffee.  It gives me that opportunity to breathe and think about what’s going on and become more rational.  One of the perks, that shows up eventually, is that it gives me a chance to reflect (not only on the stupid stuff but..) on the good things in my life.  It gives me a chance to realize that a particular problem is not world-ending, but in fact I am lucky and that I need to be more grateful.

I’ve been journaling since I learned how to write.  There was something alluring about writing down your world in a book, and as I grew older, I began to like the stereotypical coffee, coffee house and journal time.  Now that I have a child, I have my own desk and “quiet spot” to write in.  Journaling (or blogging, or writing stupid shit on a napkin at 4 am because that’s the only thing you have to write on) I believe has made me a better person, it’s something I think that if people tried a few times, they would eventually pick up.  I bought Noodle her first journal not too long ago.  She now makes a big production out of sitting in bed with me in the evenings so we can write together.  Her journaling is a lot more simple, but it gives her something to do and a way to explain things (with horrible kid spelling) ie: Today we went to the forest preserve, that made me happy.  It’s also something that her and I BOTH do, not totally “together” but at the same time with each other.  She knows that when she gets older, and I’m ancient, or when she asks as an adult, she’ll get all of my journals (I have more than 40 at this point)… and that will be a great way for her and whatever grandchildren I’ve accumulated at that point to learn about me.  Hopefully it’s a trait she develops as well as she gets older.

So for now, I’m off to make some more coffee. Let the weekend begin.

 

Writer’s Block and Assorted Rants

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Sometimes my fingers itch to write so bad but there’s nothing there.  I’ll have so many ideas throughout the day, but as soon as I sit down, pick up my pen, open my book, my brain goes dead.  All I can think is “I have to remember to start the dishwasher tonight” or “Thumbs needs a brushing again” or even worse, “Dora Dora DORA the EXPLORER!”

That last one makes me want to put my head through my laptop.

Then set myself on fire.

Writer’s block is part of my cycle.  I have days where I could write all day and I fill my journal and books with all sorts of nonsense.  The blogs get published and the ideas keep coming.  Then eventually the cycle dies off and I’m brain dead again.  Stress has a huge role in it.  If I’m really busy at work, mentally anyway, or have a specifically trying day with the kiddo or whatever it may be, the less of an ability I have to make my pen move.  When I have a bad day, of course there is a ton of shit to write about, but just regular mental stress, work whatever, nothing.  Static.

Those are days where I doubt myself.  Where I ask if I really want to continue my feebile attempts at this book.   Maybe I should just close down my domain name and let that damn shoe company have it.  (Ha, nope! I’d keep this shit funded just because.) Maybe, when I’m dead and gone, my daughter, my husband, my grandkids won’t give a shit about these journals and notebooks.

Of course I won’t stop writing though, I know well enough after all of these years that writing keeps me alive.  Writing keeps me sane.

 

 

So here’s to writer’s block.  Cheers.