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Looking forward 3-5

So I missed a few days of posting.  I didn't miss my focus on life though.  I kept that going every day. 

It's not always easy to do.  I've really gotten into the habit of seeing the immediate moment and not looking forward or appreciating things for what they really are.  It's certainly an eye opener!

In the meantime, I've been celebrating and planning.  I'm eating my own type of food.  I've dropped from a size 16 to a size 12 since the move.  I've renewed friendships with two local women and am meeting with a couple I know so I can maybe build more of a friendship there as well.

After confronting Cecil about Nikki abusing him, I was told not to mention it again to him.  I was then told that she's not abusive.  Then I had to listen to him describe her abuse while explaining how it wasn't abuse.  That was one of the hardest moments in my life.  I won't mention it again either.  I laid it out openly and I think I'm not the first one to have told him.

The short version is, she abuses him, he takes it out on me, and I'm not ok with that.  I don't know when, but I'll be walking away before long.  It's sad,but, oh well.  It beats standing close to a dog that bites me when someone else kicks it.

Looking forward 2

Today was a rough one.  A bit of a rollercoaster ride that lifted up to having fun,  feeling appreciated and feeling accomplished, countered by sudden drops into frustration and disappointment and stress.  Oh, yay, whee.

Being focused on, and staying focused on, anything positive was difficult.  Today's thing to keep me looking forward isn't the water garden I'm finally starting to have set up (first three plants today, and two fish!), but instead it's that I caught myself jogging up the stairs to the apartment.  

Let me explain how big this is.

When I moved in here, roughly six weeks ago, I couldn't carry anything up the stairs without feeling like death.  I had to walk so very cautiously because my knees were just hating me and if you never had pain in your knee, be glad.  I was in enough pain that I took pain killers just to rest.

Now I'm jogging up the stairs?  Without pain?  This kinda rocks!  

So today I look forward with evidence of my increasing good health and recovery of the use of my body.

Looking forward 1

I didn't want to go to work today.  I mean, it was one of those mornings where my deepest, all consuming longing was to stay home.  So, I decided to seize the moment.

I have a job.  This is a fantastic thing.   In a country where so many don't have jobs, I do.  Even better, my job lets me afford to live in this place where I can have days that I just want to stay here. I can fill the balcony with plants and have my cats with me.

All day today, I tried to keep my focus on the good things about my job.  The pay, the benefits, the life I get to have are all good reasons to not be unhappy to leave my house and go to work. 

I finished the day with enough energy to get the final push through from the whole team.  I found myself genuinely appreciating not only that I have a job, but appreciating how good I am at it.  It'll never be a dream job, but it's certainly worthwhile.

Gratitude

I saw the response about the photos not working.   I'm figuring that out.

In the meantime, I'm trying to adjust my frame of mind.  It's a little rough because of two factors.   The first is that Cecil is so full of negativity and rain clouds that it keeps focusing me back on the sadness and depression I'm trying not to be a part of anymore.   Their monkeys, their circus.  Life moving forward, not stagnating in misery because of a stubborn refusal to make choices to improve life.  The second part is that I have been here before.  When I shift my focus and my attitude, my view, my perspective, I lose people.   This change, though necessary, is going to likely mean the end for me and Cecil.   I'm eventually going to have to tell him he can choose to be miserable for the rest of his life, or he can choose not to be.  If he chooses to remain in misery though, I'm not staying.   My life is about moving forward, moving upward.  Rough times happen, but I'm done staying with people who are not willing to alter their course when the one they're on is not doing anything but destroying them.    I can't do it because it just destroys me in the process.

But, it's time.  I'm settling in and have my feet under me.  I keep finding myself at least acting in ways that tell me that I'm still not out of the woods, though.  Depression is some sneaky shit.  It keeps trying to hide, but I've seen too much of it in myself and others.

The best way to beat it, for me, is to shift my focus to the positive and also to do stuff despite feeling like not doing it.  The more I focus on the positive, the more I do the things depression says not to do.

So I'm going to do one of those strings of posts about what I'm happy for.  I'm not going to just stop with gratitude though.  I'm going to post what makes me smile, what makes me feel excited, and so on.  Anything that isn't a focus on depression, anything that keeps my eyes looking forward, that's what I'm going to be posting.

Happy reading!  

Settling in, finding my feet

I have been unpacking and settling in and really enjoying having the space here.  I get a little lonely at times, but really, it's just not all bad.  No more constantly dealing with Nikki's moods, tantrums, silent treatment, nasty looks, talking about me behind my back, or anything else. No more Cecil and Nikki constantly arguing and then him being an ass to me because he's mad at her.  I come home and yes, it's still stinging to come home to a place that's empty every night, but it's also just such a relief.

If this works, I'm going to share a bunch of pics of the new place now, because I'm pretty proud of it.
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Solaris Liberatis

I did indeed name and bless my new home as Solaris Liberatis.  I know the conjugation is a tad off and I've mixed Latin and Greek, but oh well.  The meaning is clear enough, "Sunlight set free."  During the day, it's a very appropriate name.  Tonight, it's dark and dreary, damp and chilly.  I don't want to turn on the heater though.  It seems a waste to have the heat on for just a few degrees more warmth when I'm about to find my way to bed and sleep under warm blankets anyway.

The move wasn't entirely uneventful.  Nikki had a fit right in front of my friend who came to help us move.  I was thoroughly embarassed.  Thankfully, despite being in the rain, hail, and freezing cold winds, we got the move done and I didn't catch pneumonia!  I'm still not unpacked but I'm ok with that.  I had my wisdom teeth out two days after the move and that pretty much took up the rest of the week.

My cat, Xander, was miserable being alone.  I woke to him crying at his reflection in the mirror because he was so lonely.  I brought home a 6 month old, long-haired calico that I've named Mia.  They're busy chasing one another around right now.  He can't decide if he likes her or not apparently.  He gets close to her one moment, seems fine, and then hisses at her the next.  It's getting better, and he isn't crying anymore, so I think it'll work out well.

Cecil and I are still together at the present.  I seriously do not know what will come next.  Part of me just says give up and walk away.  Part of me says wait it out a little.  I'm refusing to take any action until I'm more settled.  Choices made in chaos aren't usually made well, and nothing is harmed by me staying for now.  Especially now that I have my own place.

Once I get it all unpacked, I'll post some pics and share the gorgeous views I get.  The kitchen window shows the entire valley and the sunset as it spreads out across the far horizon.  The balcony is completely hidden behind trees that reflect the light and wave glowing green leaves with golden trim.  There's a hummingbird, too.  He startled me quite soundly the first day here.  He just popped right up over the edge.  I will attest that hummingbirds can look surprised!  He recovered though and flew to a nearby branch where he looked at me as if to say, "Who are you and where is my food?"

I have so many plans for this place.  Plans that include preparing to finally buy a house.  I don't know if I'll settle in the city or outside it, but it's time.  I wasn't really ready to own a place before, honestly.  To many, I'm sure that sounds odd.  I didn't ever want to buy a place just because it was expected though.  I wanted to wait, I wanted to know that where I was, I'd be content to stay.  I've weathered much here, and yet in this place, more than any other, I always come out on top.  There is a stability and a strengthening force in this area that suits me well, so I am ready now, to prepare and find the home that will serve me the rest of my life.

The caveat to that is that if I can complete the plans for my writing and start making a sufficient income from it, I'll be buying an RV and travelling instead of buying a house.  I'll drive off to the mountains in the summer and write in the forests, then travel out to the beaches in the winter and learn about keeping sand out of computers while the waves sing their tales for me to trascribe.  Perhaps spring in the midwest, where I remember it so well from my childhood, watching the wildflowers bloom.  A trip to the northeast for the fall colors will have to happen, of course.  It seems requisite for any writer in the US.  And, think how much easier a book tour would be.  No scrambling through airports, dragging luggage and watching for pickpockets and praying your flights connect on time.  Just hop in the driver's seat after putting things away, and down the road I go to the next city, where I can sleep in my own bed, instead of a hotel, and see the sites and the people along the way.  So yes, a house unless I can do the RV, then the RV.

I am facing one frightening revelation today.  My youngest daughter, Cassie, has been having seizures.  The doctors thought it was a stress induced form that requires counseling, stress management, and anxiety pills to control.  She went to the hospital last night to be monitored for 24 hours.  They've extended the period to 48 hrs.  Her brain is throwing irregular activity patterns, meaning that the seizures are actual epilepsy, not stress.  How an otherwise healthy 22 yr old suddenly starts having seizures is beyond me.  I'm having her call me in the morning when the doctor comes to talk to her so I can get the information with her.

I know that epilepsy is pretty well controlled these days, but it's still a surprise, and a bit of a fright, given how suddenly this has begun.  I hope that the doctor will have answers that will give us a course to move forward with, and that her life won't be too heavily impacted by this.  I also want to take her boyfriend out to some dark place and work him over with a bat.  He actually had the nerve to accuse her of faking this.  I may not ever really forgive him for that, whether she ever knows that or not.

And so, I'm going to start working my way towards sleep.  Hopefully it'll be refreshing.  I'd really like to finish the unpacking and relax a bit these next two days I have off from work.

I am away too long

I know that I am.  I do try not to be.  I've been looking forward to the move.  I'm less than 30 days from moving day.  I can't quite settle myself that all will be well though.  My mind churns constantly about whether I'll have enough money, what if I miss work,what if I can't buy food, what if the car breaks down, and what if, and what if.

Reality being, I won't be supporting anyone else, and there's a great deal of what if that can be handled with a proper budget and not supporting others.  I know that sounds snide, but I don't mean it to be. It's simply that when I lived alone, in the course of a year, I fully furnished a place that I moved into with nothing but my computer desk and a bed.  In the first couple of months I'd fitted out the kitchen and a couple months later I bought a brand new couch and love seat.  I got sick and had the money for the doctor.  I was well on the way to saving for a car when I had Cecil and Nikki move in.  The savings whittled away over time.  I don't fault them for that.  I offered it.  I should have limited it a bit.  But again, that was my doing.

A friend of mine is concerned that I'll end up with a roomie in no time, having two bedrooms.  I promised him no one will move in until he does.  He laughed and accepted the promise.  The odds of his moving in are slim to nil, so the point is made.

I also have somewhat of a windfall coming shortly after the move.  I have stocks and in June this year, I'll be able to sell them.  It'll lead to me having rather more than enough to restore my saving account and cover my weekend with my kindred in July.  I'll have enough base income to cover my own expenses, and refurnish.

My mind is convinced I'm teetering on the brink of disaster though.  I have to wonder if it's because I'm afraid that the move won't happen... that this hell that I woke up to find myself in, will never end.  Nikki always watching everything I do, judging, condemning every act.  She even had a fit about me having dental work done.  She dared to judge that I shouldn't be saying I can't afford to move without their help because I can afford dental work.

I want to just stand a half in in front of her and shout, "You stupid cow! *I* planned ahead!  *I* set up a flex account to cover the cost so *I* could take care of myself no matter WHAT the two of you did!  I'm not spending cash or money I can use otherwise, and how dare *YOU* of all people try to stand in judgement over how *I* handle MY life!?"

Stupid, selfish, petty bitch.

Sorry, yes, that was my outside voice.  I'm so done with her.  It may end things with him, but so be it.  It's worth it to be rid of that self-righteous shrew.

Still standing

I found a place to move into already.  Yes, it's early but I needed something to put my feet on.  I'm going to take a one bedroom instead of my usual two.  If I have two bedrooms I keep ending up taking someone in or even just finding a roomie.  Then I end up used for the money and tossed aside.  Now it's time for me to learn to say no.  If I can't manage it on my own then I'll make it so I don't have that option.

I've had shit to deal with, of course.  Cecil wants me to live in a complex with he and Nikki.  I was caving but got a wake up call from some friends.  I'm sticking to my plans.

Cecil says he asked Nikki for more money to give me so I can save up for the move.  She had a tantrum because I've bought food just for me and refused.   That was the last straw for me.

It all may be moot.  She's trying to get a job in Florida.  If she goes, he will, too.

So yeah, best I tend my own needs.

Jesse and I have been staying in touch off and on.  No romantic anything, just staying in touch.  It's causing him grief with Tessia but he's determined that she can be OK with us staying in touch.   It's helpful, having him to talk to at times. 

And that's where things are.  I've paid the first $200 on my apartment and am packing already.  My new pots and pans arrived.  I also realized, in June I can share my stock in the company.  That's enough for the new furniture. 

Well, that was unexpected.

This may be a touch disjointed and typos or bad word choice are entirely possible.  I'm making this one from my phone while at work.  Did I ever mention that auto correct hates me?

Day before last, I was contacted by Jesse.  His aunt, who raised him, has died.  She and I were close, so he felt I should hear the news.

I was just stunned by the news.   I seriously felt like someone had punched me in the chest and knocked the wind out of me.  Within a couple of hours, the initial shock was wearing off and I left work early to give myself time to grieve a bit.

His aunt was crazy as they come, but she was also generous, caring, encouraging, and one of the most fierce people I've ever met.  When he and I split, I tried to stay in touch with her, but I just couldn't.   Every time I went to see her she tried to set me and Jesse up to be together at her place and work things out.   I loved her for the attempts, but I wasn't doing well.  I had to break contact.  I was still wanting what she tried to enable too much.

After I left the office, I went to see Jesse and spent a bit of time with he and his best friend, who I know well.   He's so much the same person he was, but I didn't feel the hurt or anything but relief and happiness to be able to talk to my old friend again.   Well, in between crying jags that we were both experiencing.  It was nice to be there though.

After Brandon left, Jesse and I went and grabbed burgers together.  While we ate I ended up telling him what's going on with my household.  It was crazy how much more steady I felt just from talking to him about it.  I also cried over it without "supportive" meaning "make the crying stop" for the first time.  That was an amazing release, and badly needed.  But then, Jesse and I never did have trouble expressing emotion to one another.  Given that we started talking in 1994, I'm not going to try counting how many times one of us has cried on the other's shoulder.

He did say that he means to talk to Tessia, that he also misses having me in his life.  Heh.  We've both felt roughly the same, there's a hole in our lives that the other fills and nothing and no one else can do.  I'm holding my breath on the one hand and trying to be realistic.  Tessia fears me being in contact with Jesse.  It's that simple. 

I suppose on the one hand, she did it to herself.  When you rip a relationship apart to get the guy, and you know that he loves the woman he was with, you get to spend your time terrified that she might come back.  

She, and everyone else needs to get on board with the idea that he and I both recognize that we just don't do so well when we go beyond friendship.   That's a bridge we aren't willing to cross again.  Every time we try, we end up not talking for years.

I did take the opportunity, given that this may well be the last brief moment to speak, to say several things to him.  Among those things was that he is the love of my life, always has been, always will be, and that even after everything, that's still true.  I told him that whether he is in my life or not, my heart doesn't change and no one will ever have the place he does.

He responded that he also feels that there is a place in his heart that no one will touch but me.

We stood by my car, hugging the life out of one another...  And it all felt right.  No intent to act on any emotions we were sharing, just taking the chance to say things we needed to.  I think we both must have needed to. That was easily the best hug of my life.   Even if we don't stay in touch now, it'll be OK.   He knows.  I know.  Now it's all OK.

I've been keeping tabs on him since then.  Dealing with his aunt's death is taking a heavy toll on him.     I just shoot him a text or a short call and ask how he's doing, drop a little moral support.

Somehow, the last time we had spoken, he went to talk to Tessia about talking to me again.  Before he could say anything, she was tearing into him about how she knew he was talking to me, accusing him of cheating on her, etc.  So, he didn't say anything at all.

Oddly, if she'd known what was said at the time, she wouldn't have been so freaked out...  Or, maybe she would have.   Not my circus, not my monkeys. 

Either way, I know I'll be OK now.   I do hope we don't have to say goodbye again though.

I'm sorry to make anyone worry.  I got all your messages, and honestly, your concern right now was much needed.  I've really been struggling lately.

Six weeks ago, if anyone had asked me how things were going, I'd have had to say that they were amazing.  I was happy with my little family, looking forward to life, knowing that I had a family.

Four weeks ago it all went to hell.

Nikki decided she wants to have a place of her own.  Cecil is moving out with her.  I'm going to be living alone again.

All the times I've asked why this is happening don't help and don't answer questions.

Nikki was patently mean when we all sat to speak as a group.  She informed me that she wouldn't speak to me again if it weren't Cecil, that we aren't friends and she feels no bond between us.  She went on to elaborate that we have nothing in common, stating that we like different music... based on one song I played that she didn't like.  She then continued into a rant about how she resents me supporting she and Cecil.  Cecil told me later that this is how she treats her daughter, too, and why her daughter won't live with her, but instead chooses to remain in sub par living conditions on the east coast.  (Sub par being a mobile home with a hole in the bedroom floor that's big enough to step into.)  I think I can relate to her daughter very well.

The lease is up at the end of April.  I'll be moving into a place of my own at that time.  Cecil and I intend to keep seeing one another, but really, I don't know how long that will last.  I expect her to make it impossible.  The reality is, she used me.  When she realized that she couldn't control me, she pulled the plug.

I'm hurt, and angry, and Cecil begged me not to say what I think of her to her, so I have no voice in this at all.  I feel like I've invested every day into this household for two years, and it's gotten me nothing but broke.  I feel like I'm not wanted in the house I'm paying for.  I feel betrayed.  I feel shit upon.  I feel rejected and undeserving of respect or caring.  I feel silenced, and like I don't matter.

I'm depressed as all fuck, too.  I wasn't.  I was rocking it out on high.  Life never looked so good!  Then this mess.  Then my youngest started having some sort of intermittent paralysis.  (She's seeing the neurologist today about that.)  And just on and on it goes.

Too much stress, no outlet, no real support in person, and yeah, bring on the depression.  I want to lay in bed for days and just weep.

I'm fighting it.  I'm going to the gym today.  I'm going to make myself go.  I haven't gone since this all blew open.

I do have a couple good friends out here now, though we work opposite shifts so we don't get to hang out much.  They're both very supportive right now though, and that helps.  I think the hardest part, for me, is just adapting back to the whole concept of living alone again.  I hate it.  It's not that I can't.  I have, for years even.  It's that I don't want to.

I'm trying to make plans for when I move.  I'm going to refurbish my kitchen.  Everything I owned was ruined by Nikki.  Hardened, anonized, non-stick cookware, and she used metal on it, regularly.  I'd cry if I gave a damn.  I just refuse to take it with me though.  She can have it if she wants.  I'm getting all new stuff.  I'm getting new dishes as well.  I'm short a couple plates, a bowl and a couple coffee mugs.  So, yes, all new kitchen supplies and dinnerware.  I hope I'll get more excited about that as the time gets closer.

I'm also going to start hosting a dinner for my "family" out here.  My older daughter, Kelly, her best friend and friend's child, my friends, Scotty, Shirl, Boann, and the Johnson family with their son and newborn daughter.  I figure once or twice a month will be nice.  We can just hang out, have a big family feeling in the place and enjoy some good food and good company.

I've also been asked to start teaching shamanic practices again, as well.  I've told everyone I need to wait until after I get moved, but that yes, I'll start teaching again.

So, there's good things coming, even if/when things with Cecil end.  It's just a very difficult place to be right now.  I'll gladly take any thoughts of lifting depression or any humor anyone has to share.  I'm a little short at the moment.

Life Moving Forward... all over again.

Someone just shoot me?