This hasn’t happened to me before! I’m so grateful and I don’t know who to thank!
This happened yesterday, and the reason I didn’t know or post about it was because I was getting my phone repaired. I badly needed a new battery and charging port.
My phone is about two and a half years old with heavy use, so I’d have to recharge it multiple times a day with a fast charging cord. So both the USB port and the battery needed to be replaced.
I ordered the parts myself and was going to do the repairs myself, I’m handy with computers, and most repairs are straightforward with a guide and cheap tools you can buy online. I’ve built my past three PCs for gaming, so replacing parts on the phone is easy.
While I can and have blogged on my Personal desktop computer, I don’t like to. I get too distracted. It’s the thing I use to relax after work and on weekends. I’ve noticed that my best production comes away from there in other locations in the morning.
It was as simple as finding my phone model in the settings, looking up: “battery replacement for model” on YouTube, and acquiring what I needed on Amazon, which was about $30. I have much better compared to purchasing a brand-new phone for like $400-600. Plus, that would be wasteful and unnecessary since my phone, as I type on it today, February 1st, is working like it was before the battery started to wear out.
I had a problem with the repair. I got the back case off with the tool kit and a borrowed hair drier, BUT some of the tiny custom screws were stripped, and none of the eight miniature custom screwdrivers worked to remove the screws. So, I brought it to a local cellphone repair shop in my neighborhood on Monday. I picked it up Tuesday night after work. The total cost of replacing the parts with an expert: is $75—a fair price. Maybe I can get another two years out of this phone. Or more? I don’t need a fancy or overpriced expensive model.
That brings us today on Wednesday morning.
Sorry, Im late with a post. I lost Thursday through Sunday because of my health. I had a Long-Covid flare-up out of the blue. While I was feeling better on the weekend, I still had brain fog and could not do anything requiring a strenuous mental effort like blogging. Which is a bummer when that falls on the days I plan to write new posts.
Thankfully I had a doctor’s appointment on Wednesday last week. My bloodwork was in a healthy range, and the results from the EKG were good. I’m already feeling better from her advice on changes to make. Which, among other things are to add a dose of vitamin B12 and CoQ10 to my regimen. I’m also increasing my antidepressant which will help with that part of long covid symptoms.
This is the third round of medical tests done in the past year. While all have been in the healthy range, which is good, it’s frustrating that I’m still dealing with long covid. Since science is catching up on research, and understanding thus disease, I’m doing all I can. It’s out of my control when or if I recover. So all I can do now is to practice Radical acceptance.
All things considered, Life’s good. I’m still terrified of catching covid and waiting until the peak season of winter is over to socialize in person, Still, I’m slowly improving with this and my therapy-centered issues.
I’m not sure how to end this post; Thanks for reading! If the mysterious gift giver would like to identify themselves in the comments, please do! I would like to personally thank you!
I’m starting to feel fantastic positive feelings as a result of writing that essay. I achieved a goal I wanted. This victory shows that I am capable of so much more. This shows that all the inner work I’ve done has paid off.
This blog post is part 3 of a series of posts about this experience
I have an article in a newspaper! I told my story and hopefully will help change the world for the better. Holy shit. That’s a big deal!
This is evidence of how great a writer I could be. I had a lot of help from the Seattle Times journalist. This situation shows me that I can grow as a writer. I stood up and spoke out about problems in the mental health system. I’ll be helping someone else struggling. It feels good to help others by speaking up.
What a big deal! …
Follow up details
I need to add details to the last post and the article. I didn’t mean to overlook these details. Ever have that feeling after a conversation where you remember something after the fact? That’s been me since Monday.
I did have successes in therapy. I feel I discounted how much of an impact therapy has had when it does work. I was able to work through so much with my therapist and everyone at Sound.
They had great groups and any support you needed. I can’t say enough how grateful I am to Sound Mental Health in this therapy journey. Life from April 2020 to June 2021 was good. That’s because I was in therapy. That’s because the zoom groups were so great. Those kept me going despite the lockdown social distance phase of the pandemic. I attempted to return for treatment there; however, they only take Medicaid. Disappointing that I couldn’t continue… But I get it. Those on Medicaid who need therapy need great providers the most. Just as I did during my time there.
Groups were helpful and supportive at Valley Cities while I was there. I really enjoyed the activities and the people. The employee turnover and changing therapists was too much for me. I wish I could have found that therapist match there. Oh well. I got some helpful skills out of this disappointment.
Back in 2009, I had a favorable year-long therapy treatment that helped. We worked through PTSD I was experiencing then. A year later, I recovered from PTSD through exposure therapy. It’s what I needed at the time.
Ah… I should have accepted the suggestion by the reporter to say something positive about therapy. I hope I didn’t mislead anyone about my experience. Therapy can help. It is maddening to get that help you need.
My problem has been how hard it was to get started, get comfortable, and progress in therapy. It’s been a long roller coaster ride I didn’t want. I was frustrated because now I know how it feels to be healed. What it feels like to have your work pay off. I have become better. I’ve become a better man. I never thought life could feel so fulfilling. I forgot how success feels to achieve something difficult with persistence and hard work. Therapy became my higher power. The dream is to heal all the trauma, fix the suffering as a side effect of mental illness, and break the line of generational trauma.
I’m choosing to take this as proof that I have grown as a person. I’m enough of an adult to take care of myself by finding a therapist. I know that I can follow through and win. I know there is more to dream about. I know that I want more from life.
I wouldn’t be here without therapy, psychology, the internet, and not giving up despite the heartbreak. All the therapists and social workers all the way. I didn’t give up at my lowest. I somehow held on. I wouldn’t be here without all the excellent support from my aunts and uncles on my mom’s side of the family. I wouldn’t be here if I didn’t have my cousins. I wouldn’t be here without blogging. I wouldn’t be here if I didn’t have my cats. I wouldn’t be here if I didn’t have my mom or brother. I wouldn’t be here with my friends. I am here because I had so much support along the way. The pandemic has shown how many good people I have in my life.
This is a victory for my values. A concept I learned with my previous therapist. This is a life-changing victory on all levels for me. I am more capable than I ever thought possible. I stood up for better mental health. I stood up for better healthcare. I stood up for civil rights. I stood up for personal accountability. I did it because it felt like the right thing to do.
I’m back in the arena, ready for the next mountain to climb.
I’ve become a published writer in a big publisher!
I’m the first family member to be published in the Northwest section of the Seattle Times! My mother, the poet, hasn’t done this. She’s been writing for 40-plus years. My cousins won state championships in high school basketball but they never did this. Nobody on either side of my family has achieved this.
I have made it, and the 15 minutes of fame are over. It was nice while it lasted. I’m grateful to have wrote that. I’m grateful for the experience.
I’m back to square zero. I gotta figure out the next goal. What do I desire?
July 4th. American Independence day weekend. I don’t feel like celebrating.
Living in America feels like a bad dream. A never-ending nightmare of bad news. Yeah, there was that legislation to improve gun safety. But will it really change anything? I doubt it. It feels like another feel-good, a little too late, a middle-ground bill that pleases nobody… And the violence continues. We really need young people in charge. We really need non-corporate slaves in charge. Voting Republican isn’t a solution. Their goal is to create more problems. Way too many were cheering when January 6th happened when America almost became a fascist state.
I’m tired of Joe Biden being a caretaker president. Nothing has changed. His best argument when running was that his long record as a Senator would help him pass legislation through our deadlocked (by republicans) congress. That hasn’t happened. Sure, he has signed many Executive Orders, but those will be canceled by the next eventual republican. We gave him a good shot to get things done, to make big changes… And it hasn’t happened. I’m not voting for him again. I’m so tired of getting my hopes up with politicians only to be disappointed.
So far, he’s been the “Not Trump” candidate.
We need an actual liberal as president. Who isn’t another corporatist wearing a democrat mask? We need leadership that will be alive after their time as president is over, so they must live through the consequences. We need a president who hasn’t lived in the DC bubble, has worked a regular job for a living recently and is not wealthy. I love Bernie Sanders, but the man has done enough for the US. AOC would be a good choice for any of The Squad. There aren’t enough women holding office anyway. It’s embarrassing that we still haven’t had a woman as president. It’s fucking time.
I’m so grateful to live in Washington state. I wonder if things will improve in my lifetime here in America. It sure doesn’t look like the corporate hold over this country will soon disappear. Problems keep piling up, and these piecemeal, half-ass (aka middle ground) solutions won’t cut it any longer. So no, I won’t be celebrating this independence day weekend. Because we, as a country, are dependent on capitalism and corporations. As long as wealth exists, there will never be true equality. Never because some person will be able to be above another.
What am I supposed to do when I can be outspent by some rich person who can donate more money than I will make in my entire life? What am I supposed to do when those same rich assholes own news companies and can indoctrinate millions into what they want? My one vote only goes so far. I can only convince so many people. What am I supposed to do when a group of appointed assholes makes decisions based on their beliefs and not the law? Do we even need the supreme court? Do I even want to be an American?
I’m so exhausted from watching this country slowly disintegrate from a democracy to some nightmare straight out of 1984.
Also, fuck fireworks. They are loud and noisy everywhere these days. They cause pollution. Most of the time, they are set off late at night on a random day and time when you’re trying to sleep, just like a car alarm going off. Of all the amazing things in life, and this modern world, seeing or buying fireworks is the last thing I want to do.
Alright, enough complaining. Here are things I can celebrate.
I opened the WordPress app today and saw that the all-time views passed 5000! Wow! That’s a big deal for a personal blog like this! I’ll take it!
I dropped the ball on the 1000 likes landmark and should’ve celebrated it sooner. It happened with this post:
I’ve blogged about it quite a bit. I keep talking about it, but I am not moving forward. Well, not quite. Last week, I began seeing a therapist again. I started seeing a life coach. My scrolling Instagram for hours is paying off because most of that time is spent watching therapy-related reels and images.
I went and saw my buddy on Saturday. He’s going through a hard time, and it’s tough to see him in pain. I’m grateful to have been there for him. That I do have him as a friend.
Feels like everyone is struggling these days…
Since I started in March 2020, the hardest part of this journey has been to pick myself up from rock bottom as my life started over at that time. Relationships changed. People changed. I changed. Life changed. So much so that I’m still adjusting to this new normal.
I had to learn the hard way that the only person to save me is myself. It’s okay to ask for help. Or for support. The bottom line is that I have to be the person to do so. Others do want to help. Others want to be in your life. However, you have to advocate and be there for yourself. It’s part of being an adult. To be healthy.
Despite all the difficulties, there are little things to celebrate. So that’s something… Guess I got that going for me. 😑🙃
I’d like to thank everyone who has taken the time to stop by this blog, read these posts, comment, and like them. I appreciate it. It makes my day. Doing so makes me feel not alone because others connect with my writing. It’s the one way I feel connected to the world and others. It’s hard to cope when I take a lot of time to write, edit, and advertise a post and few people read it. Please continue to stop by.
Song of the post, United in Grief by Kendrick Lamar
(I’ve been listening to this album on repeat, it’s a new favorite and I captured this moment in time perfectly.)
When writing, you have to remember who a piece is for.
Yesterday I went and visited my Aunt Mary. It’s been… Since August of last year, I last saw her in person. She’s getting older. She was losing her memory then, was severe enough that she needed full-time care assisted living. (I didn’t know there was a difference between these terms. My bad.) So much happened between now and then, made harder because of the pandemic—full credit to my cousin, her siblings, and my mom for coordinating this challenge. My aunt Mary is in a good place now that meets her needs.
She was so happy to visit me. Her new place is nice, seems the people working there are friendly. Helpful to the residents.
She has aphasia. Which means she forgets things. Memories, people, recalling information. It breaks my heart to see her like this. I’d known her to be wise as a whip and loquacious. I’d known her as kind l caring, and she treated all of us, kids, as equal persons of value.
I hope I’m not oversharing. I had to say write something. I didn’t realize what a privilege it is to have this ability to pontificate. To be able to talk to another person without struggling for words. It breaks my heart.
It hurts to see her differently now. Once again, I know that she is getting older. Part of life and having a large family is seeing your loved ones get older and, eventually, die. Nobody escapes death. Or, in this case, life changes.
Thanks to the pandemic and working on myself for the past two years, I’ve learned to be grateful for who I have in life. The people that care about you are interested in your life and have been there with you. Aunt Mary always has been. All the ups and downs. She reminded me of many good memories, good times together I’d forgotten about.
We went and had McDonald’s with her and a long-time friend who lives there with her for dinner. It was blowing rain. I didn’t mind. Both ladies were so happy, so excited to go out and do something. I was grateful to drive us there.
We returned and ate dinner in a nice visiting area in the lobby of her apartment. Had some nice comfy chairs and a fireplace. It was a wonderful experience. I’m so happy to have that time and meet her friend.
An excellent silly adventure for tasty, fast food.
Our life on this earth is short.
I’m grateful for Sunday and those hundreds of thousands of days in life with her.
I kept up a cheerful front because I wanted to appreciate every minute of this visit. I tried to be strong because she needed me to be.
I bawled on the ferry ride back. Been feeling a bunch of complicated emotions as I’m grateful for everything she’s meant to me and to see her change like this. I’m, my family is grieving the person she was. She’s here but gone. Still a lovely person. Sigh.
I couldn’t sleep and wake up in the night with a migraine. I had to take the day off work cause of it.
I’m rambling again. I am getting long in the tooth again.
I love you, Aunt Mary. I couldn’t think of anything else to share but this song by Jimi Hendrix. Maybe we can’t talk with words the same as we used to. Next time, I’ll read to you like you once did when I was a child. Hopefully, we can continue to connect through music. Only this feels right:
Song of the post: The wind cries Mary by Jimi Hendrix
The past week has been difficult… Finally some wonderful news! My kitty– a blue point Siamese– turns 1 years old today!
It’s been a wonderful 10 months with her. She’s grown so much since I adopted her last August as a baby.
Ocoat the window by the door for me to get home.
She explores every possible surface in the house she can fit into.
She yowls whenever one of us is outside, moving from window to window to follow.
She liked to knock things off of desks and tables to play with it. Rocks, pens, nail clippers, twist ties, pennies, a bag of shredded coconut… If she could drag it down and play with it, she did so.
She likes to hang out with people. Coco likes to be close by my mother or me whenever we’re home. The first time it was safe to visit after being vaccinated, Coco was social with other humans.
Coconut is fascinated with our older cat Lucy. They have (what I imagine) a sisters relationship. Coco bugs Lucy, then backs off like nothing happened.
She loves to stand in open windows to look outside.
In the hardest year of my life, 2020, she was the breath of fresh air desperately needed. She accepts the world as is, and is fascinated by it.
Coco kept me grounded, kept me mindful, kept me sane, made me appreciate every day again.
Coco was a constant companion in every zoom therapy group, and therapy appointment. I showed her to the regular “social connections” group like a day after I adopted her. She grew up on camera as I grew as a person working on myself in 2020. I made sure to bring her in on camera for my last time in that group… Which was right before I was hired at my last job.
My previous therapist knew her, and would ask about her every appointment if Coco wasn’t around.
The most affectionate cat, or animal I’ve ever had. Has giant purrs every time you go visit her. We have this routine where she climbs up me while I’m on my PC, and presses into me for lovies, then settles into my left arm as I hold her curled up. Coco then nuzzles on my neck while kneading. (Like a baby kitten nursing it’s mother) Often into my beard… At times her claws get stuck in my skin, and I have to carefully remove it. (This can be really painful)
Her new thing is to beg to go outside. I recently bought her a leash to do so. I gave in after months of her begging to go out. I planned for her to be an inside cat, as I plan to move out, and can’t guarantee my next place will be safe for her to be out. I’m worried someone might steal her because cocos so friendly. She’s in heaven so far.
I love my kitty. Happy birthday Coco-nut! I love you Coco. ❤️ I’m so happy to adopt you into my family. Happy first birthday, hears to many more!
This post was written in pieces through this week and I had a different plan in mind. Friday at the end of work changed it.
Layoff number 3 in a row.
Unfortunately I called it before it happened. I saw the signs… Grim face on my boss after he read an email on the PC in the work area… A mysterious announcement at the end of work, then, calling people one by one to meet with them. All signs I saw before at my last two jobs, which I was laid off from. I happened to be the last to find out as I was the last person called in.
3 lay offs in a row… Really life?
I’m fine. Or as my family joked after dad died: Fine = Fucked up, Insecure, Neurotic, Emotional. Fuck. It’s painful to be laid off as is. 3 times in a row. 🤬 My emotions are a raging torrent inside. I dunno if I have it me to work another two weeks. It ain’t like they (former employer) treated me unkindly… –Like the lyric from Don’t think twice by Bob Dylan– But I have limits. I recognize that the wound is fresh, and I’m hurting from this loss. But I feel this would be self harm. I deserve better. I refuse to put up with people or things that hurt me.
Unfortunately, there aren’t that many cannabis job postings for the same job in my area right now. So I’ll give this employer one week because they’ve been good to me. I have a barber shop appointment at a place close to work. I have unemployment left, thanks to the extensions.
Maybe I’m handling this situation calmly because I’ve set appropriate boundaries with work. It’s a conditional relationship, and a capitalist relationship. I have to do what’s best for me as a worker, because we are replaceable. I don’t have to show up tomorrow if I don’t want to. I have FU money. (Well, poverty level FU money. 😅 I wish I had rich person FU money, lol )
For the first time since last year when I chose values for myself, I am in a values conflict. So I’ll work one more optional week because it helps me grow as a person. This last week showing up with my best for someone else will help my future self show up best for me. I deserve it. I deserve to be treated well, and treat myself well.
I have one job lead for a cannabis retail job, but it’s not ideal. I am grateful for this from my friend Chris. Retail work is not something I’m naturally good at. Extraverted jobs are a natural weakness for a typical introvert like me. (Correction: two job leads. My cousin that I consider my older sister… Needs my help next month. The job is to help her with my aunt’s house. )
Maaaaan… Things were starting to look up, so being laid off is frustrating. I feel betrayed by my employer.
But… This quote from Models by Mark Manson (who quoted this from No more Mr. Nice guy by Robert Glover) has been playing in my head since Friday:
“What if it (any difficult situation in life) was a gift?”
Robert Glover, No more Mr nice guy.
The Man in the Mirror
I’m not satisfied with the reflection of myself right now. That’s on me. I can do better, and I want to do better. This is from a position of peace of mind, not insecurities. I want to have the best possible life I can, for me first, then others. I am enough. I can do better, too. I’m ready.
Despite the chickens dying last week, life has been pretty good. Pretty much sleep, work, eat, play with cats, smoke a bowl of pot, go to bed early because I’m tired, sleep.
Ready to integrate, to have a social life again.
An in person social life. It finally feels safe to hang out with people. I’ve been fully vaccinated for a month, yet still hesitant to reach out to friends while also feeling lonely. So, two weeks ago, I set up an appointment at a barber shop. It’s the first time I’ll be going to one, and the plan is to get a professional haircut and beard trim. I haven’t had a haircut in over a year, and frankly look like a scraggly hobo. I don’t like feeling this way.
I’m feeling over cutting my hair myself. A plus of the pandemic is that I learned that I like having long hair, and a long beard. I’d forgotten what it felt like to be worried about my appearance, and how great it feels to look the best you can. I deserve to treat myself and take care of myself for myself first, because I’m worthy. Get a goal, I get to practice self care, get to practice feeling enough, and I get to go out and socialize with new people in a new place. My future self will thank me.
Figured out new things to work on myself
Professional Haircut and beard trim. (Tired of cheap cuts and the inconsistency)
Clothes. I need to sort through what I have. I’ve remembered what it felt like to dress well, and feel proud of myself for it.
Hangout with friends and meet new people.
Need financial advice for my plans to get a car, and move out likely to an apartment.
I’d like to join an ultimate frisbee group/team. And/or a muy tai gym… I enjoyed some muy tai classes last year with my brother and a friend. (The obstacle to this is if they’re open now, and if they require being vaccinated. I don’t want to risk getting covid in an enclosed space grappling with people who aren’t vaccinated.)
Go out into nature. Like once a month. Hiking or whatever.
It’s been years since I last saw a game in person in the Seattle stadiums. I haven’t been to a Seahawks game at Lumen field before. Been like seven years since my last Mariners game. To be fair, they’ve sucked for years. Being a Mariners fan is painful at times. I’d like to go to a Seattle Kraken game this season. They’re a new expansion NHL team, and this is their first season. I don’t know much about hockey, so this will be fun to learn.
Want to get my first tattoo. Then see how I feel about another after some time. I’ve wanted to get a tattoo and had it in the back of my head for years.
And of course, dates and dating. I’m getting used to the reality that this is a marathon. I’m not perfect and that’s okay. I’m okay with self improvement.
The next step: change from a pandemic hermit.
So, back to dressing well to feel good, get a new look, do activities that interest me, and learn to be a friend. Back to the self work I had as a goal before the pandemic.
It’s time to see friends, and lead by example. I have to follow through on reconnecting with all the people in life. I miss many people, and the pandemic really clarified what I will have with boundaries and values.
Saturday update: I went and hung out with my friend Chris at his house. It was a wonderful time. It was a cookout for his birthday, so we smoked, I met a friend of his, and his gf, and we chilled. They have 4 dogs, and two cats, so I got to visit them too. It felt weird going to an indoor place without a mask, even though everyone is vaccinated, but after a little bit it felt normal. It felt good to be comfortable with friends again. Oh yeah, and he had Pepsi Blue! I thought it didn’t exist anymore, but it does! So I drank 3 sodas while hanging out Saturday. It was like drinking a time warp to sophomore year in highschool. When I’d drink this after snowboarding.
Monday edit: How could I forgot to mention… I got to meet my friends infant daughter. It was the first time in my life where I was able to interact with a baby… Without the baby being forced on me, or I’m guilt tripped for not wanting to hold the baby. I like and am good with kids. Don’t force it on me. One, it crosses a boundary by entering my physical space, and Two, I want to experience things in life on my own. I don’t have to have the same experiences my parents had.
So, this nice experience with my friends daughter helped me with this.
Feels weird to think that I can resume a social life. Today, I feel like a massive weight was lifted. I’m not feeling lonely as I have felt for a while.
Friends are awesome 😎.
Now that things are safe because people are getting vaccinated, and in person activities are resuming, so shall I. My future is outside, in the world.
Some dating success
I’ve been texting this lady for a couple weeks. I’ve asked her out for different date activities, but she’s been busy. She’s sent pictures (and I’ve found no signs of a catfish yet), and been responsive to messages when she has time. I’m remaining hopeful for the best… While being cautious to protect my heart. I’m showing up, being vulnerable, and growing from past mistakes in this dating phase. I am enough. I am worthy.
Losing my job is frustrating because I feel like I can’t date without a job, but maybe that’s just insecurity. Maybe this person will be the exception and not dump me.
I’d like to give a special shout-out appreciation to the WordPress community, and fellow bloggers. You’ve been an awesome support since the beginning. I’m so grateful for you. Thank you.
And as always, Thank you everyone who read this post, and follows this blog! Was there a time you looked at yourself, accepted who you were, and knew you could do better, for you?
For my entire adult life until like April of this year, I was ashamed of my sparse dating experience. I felt my shame was evident to everyone else, despite my never telling anyone in person. I felt safe in the anonymous false comfort of Reddit and other message boards. Now, I think: Fuck it. It is what it is. I’ve come to terms with it. I can’t change the past, and I’m not starting from zero. I do have experience and knowledge about relationships and dating. The few times I have been in the dating pool, I’ve learned each time. In the past year, I’ve grown so much; it’s like I got a college degree in that stuff.
But ultimately, a degree is an ending and a starting point. The whole point of learning anything is to use that information in the world. Though I’ve changed for the better, I’m still afraid. Afraid of rejection. I’m worried I’m not enough. Last month, I paid for a month of Tinder and Bumble and did not have much luck. I’ve gotten a handful of matches, but only one conversation went somewhere with a natural person. Fucking catfish.
Which, was when I told her that I had met someone (the catfish before I figured it out) and wished her luck. I got a fantastic response back, which was heartwarming. I’m not sure I want to reconnect yet… My heart needs to rest.
I feel my dating profile might need improvement. Therefore, I have room to improve as a person and man. Thanks to stuff easing up, I can go out and do activities in person with vaccinated people. Online dating is ruthless with men because we outnumber women by a ratio of 2-3 to 1… So you need to stand out to get noticed. Finally, I can have fun and get pictures by living life for the sake of it.
I have a day left on Tinder premium and it feels like all the women are blending into the same person… Highly active who lives outdoors outside of work, drinks, doesn’t want a hookup while having multiple pictures with cleavage or lingerie , has a blank profile, lists their instagram, their dog is their baby (To be clear, I like dogs. but the obsession and pictures they choose with their dogs is unsettling.). The worst is when they match after I like them then never respond.
Technically I’m in the middle of my dating journey, and that’s enough. I assumed I would have this stuff figured out by now at 35…
Everyone starts somewhere. I’m in the process of figuring it out.
I feel I’ve entered a transition period in my life. As of last week, I’m fully vaccinated, have been at my job for a month, and thriving, and things are starting to open up again. While the CDC lifted the mask mandate for vaccinated people, I will continue to wear a mask until 80% of the US population is vaccinated. This year has taught me that you can’t trust people to do the right thing in America. The pandemic isn’t over, folks. Be safe for the children waiting to be vaccinated and those who are medically vulnerable. Please,Get the covid 19 vaccine, folks.
It feels strange emerging into the post-pandemic world as a privileged vaccinated person. I do want to see friends again, but still paranoid about getting covid-19 from other people. Even if we’re both vaccinated. While I’m treated for the virus, I haven’t recovered from the side effects of PTSD from the pandemic. I can thank my past recovery from PTSD for this. Without that, I’m not in the dark and can work through each stage of grief.
I’ve had trouble writing posts for the blog as I’ve adjusted to my job. Thankfully, it has a consistent schedule, I am good at the work, I know what to expect every day, and I like my coworkers, but it takes time to adjust to new routines. Sorry for the missed posts and random post times. Things should get back on track soon. It’s been a big adjustment from being unemployed and having time to write to working full-time again.
I’ve been thinking of trying something different with the blog. On the about me page, I said that I wanted to write fiction, publish a novel and a screenplay, and recipes. So far, posts have been heavy on my life, and I need to write about something different. Those things were put aside in 2020 because I needed to work through the difficult things in my life. In this new stable period of life, it feels like the right time to work on those again, which seems to be a theme in life right now.
I had my final therapy appointment this week, meeting my therapist for the first time, for the last time, in person. All therapy appointments for the past year plus have been over zoom. On my desktop screen for a good part of the pandemic 2020, then on zoom through my cellphone screen. Fourteen months have been working together during the pandemic over the internet.
We met at a park after work. It was warm and sunny, and many people were on the lake side Green Lake path. It was the first time I’d walked along that park, and it was lovely. Most people were still wearing masks, and it felt like I was baring cleavage by not wearing a mask, despite being vaccinated. Having an outside therapy appointment was a little weird, but okay for a final meeting. It reviewed our time together, how far I’ve come, and where we are going. It was nice to hug her as we met and left to go our ways. I said “Thank You” one last time. I’ll forever be grateful to her. Thanks to her, I was able to trust therapists. I was able to experience for myself that therapy does work. I was not terrified that she would leave out of the blue. Unlike doctors or any other specialists, you can’t change them often. You need to trust that your therapist will be with you working on your issues for an extended period—usually, several months for each thing after you’ve built trust.
I slowly realize that our time working together is over. All this happened at a good time. It felt like a natural transition. We were in a spot where I was figuring out what to work on next in therapy.
I am in a great place in life because I chose to continue. And I gave therapy one more try… Despite being let down or heartbroken in my quest to get it. I’m not used to feeling proud of myself. I still feel weird expressing myself and who I am. I have things to work on and will work on for the rest of my life, as everyone does.
I may have been unemployed and looking for employment, but my actual job last year was as a person in therapy, showing up and doing the work. I didn’t waste the precious time I had last year.
It was a bittersweet end. Once again, I’m without a therapist. I’m so grateful that I had her help during this time. I hit rock bottom last year, and the pandemic worsened my recovery. I’m here today, better than I’ve been in years because of therapy. That said, I have quite a bit to work on myself.
This sucks because I feel isolated again. As an introvert, I am comfortable being by myself and doing things. But I do need a connection with others. I don’t feel like there is anyone I can talk to staff about emotionally. Because of the pandemic, it feels like all my friends are online. I’m limited in what I can share with my family. Not everyone is safe to share emotional or personal things with. Or it’s a spectrum, and maybe the things that bother them are things they don’t have the professional training to help with. I kind of trust myself and working on this. It takes me a long time to trust people. By default, I don’t trust people.
It comes to me that writing this is ironic because I’m being vulnerable as I write this.
I’m in insurance limbo again. While I’ll have health insurance with my job, I don’t know what the plan covers. I’ll likely have to pay for meds and appointments with the plan, because it’s a private plan. Worse than WA Applecare. Then I have to find a therapist who offers appointments after or before work, then, a therapist I click with. 🙄 Man I hate American healthcare.
Maybe not the final therapy appointment with my (previous 🙁) therapist, but this is an ending.
Betty the chicken died in the night on May 9th. She was 6 years old.
I wrote on Facebook:
Looks like Betty the chicken doesn’t have much longer. I had to pick her up from the run outside the coop, and place her inside for the night. The younger chickens were perched inside ready to sleep. Poor old girl couldn’t make it. I think she knows, too, from the look in her eyes.
I said goodbye that night. I told her she was a good chicken and I liked living with her.
Betty would hang out with us outside whenever my mother or I sat outside on the deck. Or the chickens would follow me inside as I took out the trash and recycling. Chickens are excellent companions. Rest in peace, Betty.
Mom buried her in the dirt in the coop area. She asked if I wanted to be there, but I declined. I had my time with her the previous night.
I’m looking forward to getting a haircut and makeover. My hair and beard are out of control 😅. It’ll feel good to get a professional cut.
I wonder if I over share with these posts… Or the right amount to find people to connect with?
My healing journey from now moves from the mental space to the physical space.
It’s Christmas, but it doesn’t feel like it. I just couldn’t get into the spirit this year.
Life is going well, but I’m exhausted from 2020.
I’m fortunate that I had savings to get presents this year, despite being unemployed.
It’s a slim year for presents.
Even though I got everything my family asked for, today feels like an ordinary Friday.
I’m fortunate to visit with my family today.
I feel like I haven’t given my best for this Christmas.
I’ve already gotten everything I wished for this year. Friends, reconnected with family, therapy I’ve needed for years, being able to love a kitty again, being able to love again, to move forward in life, and a girlfriend!
I’m at the point in this long distance relationship where I’m wondering if my girlfriend is a catfish. We haven’t met in person yet because of coronavirus. The good news is that we have plans to meet.
Trust but verify.
I’m staying hopeful, but careful.
Damnit don’t be a catfish. No catfish will fool me. Never give a creative person inspiration. I certainly didn’t feel like I’d be this mature about this potential difficult situation a year ago.
Trust but verify. Take no shit, do no harm. Trust yourself, trust patterns. I’m prepared for any result.
Guess I’ll know when her present to me is delivered.
Take no shit, do no harm.
Also known as: “2020 in a nutshell.”
Shopping this year felt like I was the covid Grinch. Behind my masked face was a scowl at every person not masked, or not distanced. Each time out my heart shrunk in size.
I felt like George Bailey in my own wonderful life. I had to be my own angel on the bridge this year. I chose to continue on, and try one more time to get help. My breakdown and suicide attempt led to rebirth. I chose to say: Fuck you depression, no more!
What a wonderful world…
This is the best I can do today. Happy holidays to all. Be safe!
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Please wear a mask outside that covers your mouth and nose, wash your hands, clean your cell phone, and keep your physical distance (6 feet) from others to fight Covid-19!
It’s been 6 months since I started this blog in March! The anniversary was last Sunday, but my dear Grandfather passed last week. It felt wrong not to honor him in a post. It’s still hard to believe that he’s gone…
Grief is a difficult thing to deal with, and it comes in waves. I’m sad. I’m grateful and happy to have known such a wonderful human. That I had an example of what a good man, a great human. I strive to be as good a man as he was. The hardest part about this loss is that its dangerous to visit family due to the threat of covid-19. Visiting online through Facebook and zoom helps… But it’s not the same. I really wish I could visit family, and give hugs. 2020 has been a long year.
It’s important to celebrate the little things… To acknowledge the steps forward I’ve worked hard for. Despite this unusual year, there have been good things that have happened. More after the pictures.
I feel like I have grown alongside this blog. This next section is about life this past month, and goals for the future. Healthy self esteem is giving credit to your growth.
Personal growth this year:
Restarted therapy despite years of struggling to find the help I’ve wanted, and finally got it! I’m growing every day.
Finally found an antidepressant that works!
Made a bunch of new friends from coworkers from my last job. I haven’t been able to visit much in person with them this year. I want to in the future. All of us were laid off when the company closed on Jan 31st out of the blue.
Reconnected with family.
Learned about self love, and self care. How to take care of myself. How to assert myself, continue practising communicating my needs. Continue practicing boundaries.
Started a meditation practice.
Started exercising on a regular basis again.
Started a blog.
Practicing gratitude and appreciation for the good things in life.
Restarted therapy, and being fully committed and engaged in the process.
Practicing Forgiving myself when I feel depressed or anxious.
Continued practicing being assertive and speaking up for myself.
Committing to being the best possible version of myself.
Fighting with depression when it lies to me.
Being independent for myself.
Learning mindfulness and practicing it.
Learning to listen to others, and not interrupt when they are talking.
Sorting through old unhealthy thoughts and patterns and deciding whether they serve me now, and the future.
Saying thank you.
Learning how to apologize.
Hanging out with friends before the pandemic happened.
Respecting other peoples needs and boundaries.
Admitting when I have made a mistake.
Being accountable for myself.
Quit drinking for good! I don’t miss consuming it. 7 months since I stopped!
Reduced my cannabis consumption from 4 bowls/2 dabs to one bowl maybe once or twice a week!
Started reading books again.
Being comfortable expressing my feelings.
Rebuilding validation from within instead of from others.
Goals for the next 6 months:
Note: all of these things will depend on how the Covid-19 pandemic lasts.
Get a car. Hopefully something from the past 10 years. The last two cars I’ve owned/shared have been over 15 years old and were constantly in the auto shop for repairs. The cars were a 2000 Volvo s40, and a 2005 Dodge avenger. I spent several times more than what I paid for them in repair costs, and both had awful MPG. I have some savings, so once I get a job I can buy a car. I’ll do what I have to, to get to work… Be it Uber or public transportation for a little while more.
Get a job. I had an interview this week, so that is a good sign!
Move out. I’ve lived in the same house my entire life, and I’ve wanted to move out for years. I haven’t been able to until now because my mental health. I finally have it managed after 12 long years.
Keep blogging. I don’t know my long term goal for the blog. For now I want to keep growing and have each post get more traffic and comments than the last. Right now, I love talking to other bloggers in the comments, and reading their blogs.
I want to go back to college and pursue a new career and degree.
I do not want to continue working minimum wage jobs the rest of my life. What worked for the past doesn’t line up with my future.
Hang out with friends, and make new friends. Hang out in person.
I didn’t think it was possible, but I am over my friends-breakup from earlier this year! I am ready to date again! I learned so much from this failure that I am a better person today.
I want to date, and have a girlfriend.
I want to visit with family.
I want to love, and be loved.
I want a healthy relationship where I can be support my partner and take care of myself. To have healthy boundaries and clear communication.
Continue working through my issues in therapy.
Once the pandemic is over, parties for friends and family.
I am only one, but I am one. I cannot do everything. But I can do something. And I will not let what I cannot do, interfere with what I can do.” -Edward Everett Hale.