Posted in anxiety, artsy stuff, chronic pain, creativity, depression, disability, health, job hunting, life, Personal

10/10: Blargh

So, I know I’ve been fairly quiet. There are multiple reasons for it, and some I can’t/won’t discuss publicly. Seattle and GeekGirlCon wiped me out emotionally and physically. My back is still swearing at me for doing too much. Other stressors haven’t helped. I swore I’d catch up on school and I’ve fallen behind on catching up… which isn’t good.

My energy levels tanked since Seattle and I have a day or part of a day here and there where I have some energy, but then it vanishes about as fast as it appeared. I drink coffee and such even though I’m technically not supposed to have caffeine (issues with borderline hyperthyroid when I have too much, so I can’t drink much of it… and it doesn’t have as much of the effect on my as it does with most people).

The things I need to work on (in no particular order):

  • School
  • Job hunting
  • trip to Wallyworld for some items much needed for ASAP things
  • art stuff (commission and Inktober, which is more for fun, but a nice way to get me drawing more)
  • cleaning
  • and many other things…..

So many things to do and not nearly enough energy to do them. I have a Task today in a bit, and almost had another for later this week, but that fell through. I need all the income I can get, so that one was kind of important. Oh well.

I’m still here… still kicking… just facing a lot of stuff and not enough energy to tackle it all.

~A

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Posted in birthdays, community, creativity, depression, dreams, faith, friends, health, individuality, life, medical, Personal, semicolon

10/2: Birthday Post

So, today was/is my birthday. I have never been ashamed of my age. I celebrate each birthday. The main reason is simply because I’ve had far too many episodes in my life where I almost didn’t make it to the next day.

Today, I turned 45.

I also turned 9.

Nine years ago, I was in the hospital fighting this nasty infection called Cellulitis. It’s essentially a Staph infection (there are many types) that comes in through a primary infected wound (in my case, my left ear piercing decided that, after 20 years, it really didn’t like nickel or some other metal) and settles just under the skin. For me, it settled at the base of my neck on my right side

I was sent to the hospital on September 26th with a white blood cell count that was somewhere hovering around the moon. After tests, pre-dawn blood draws, massive doses of the antibiotic Vancomycin, a mild case of pneumonia, and a bunch of things… I was discharged mid-afternoon on October 2nd… my birthday. My 36th birthday to be exact.

So, to grasp how bad shit was, there are three stages of Cellulitis:

  1. redness and swelling in and around the affected area, pain and stiffness, fever in many cases.
  2. if there are lymph nodes in the area, they absorb some of the infection and swell up. the fever tends to peak and then break (I hit 103.2 or so, then 24 hours later, no fever). My lymph nodes were the size of ping-pong balls when I walked into the ER on the 26th. They shouldn’t get that big. Really.
  3. From the lymph nodes, the infection starts to spread, called ‘going septic.’ I could feel it going up my neck to my brain and across to my heart. If it had hit either, I would not be alive today.

I was in 3rd stage.

There. Is. No. Fourth. Stage.

Unless, as I like to joke, you count a body bag as a stage.

So, I almost fucking died. Not an experience I’d like to ever repeat. Until I’m old and grey. I never want Cellulitis again… ever. It is NOT a fun experience.

As I was deemed well enough to leave the hospital on my actual birthday, I celebrate not only the number of years since I showed up on this planet, but the number of years since I had a second chance.

I keep asking for gift certificates to the LEGO store, but no one ever does it… LEGO and IKEA.

But for that one year… I got the gift of a second chance. I’m doing my best to not waste it.

One lesson I learned from that experience is this:

No matter how cliche it seems, you really never know how long you have. You may not wake up tomorrow. So stop hesitating. Go back to school for that degree you’ve always wanted. Save up for that “bucket list” vacation. Make shit happen. Want to learn to paint? DO IT! Volunteer with an animal rescue? Do it. What else? The way I see it is that as long as it isn’t illegal, so way out of the boundaries of morality, or has a surefire risk of death, go for it. Step out of your comfort zone and “learn to fly!” If you’re fortunate to make it to “old age,” the goal is to be able to sit in your rocking chair and look back at your life and have as few regrets as possible. Instead of “I wish I had done ________” you can say, “I did this and it was an incredible experience.”

~A

Posted in artsy stuff, bugaboos, creativity, individuality, life, Personal, poetry

9/23: The Rebel

Standing back.
Apart from the crowd.
Distanced by social
Expectations.
Not welcome
In a sea of
Monotony.

Be me.
No one else.
But not
TOO
Much
Or no one will
Accept you.

Stand in the center
Spotlight shining on you.
They walk past.
Around.
Not coming close.
Why?
Too different.
Too out of place.

Destined to
Be.
Wholly alone
In a sea of monotony.
The rebel
Being
True to
Herself.
No one else.

~APA 2017

Posted in bugaboos, community, creativity, dreams, faith, feminism, gender, health, life, Personal, poetry, society, tattoo

9/22: When I am Old…

I’ll be turning 45 in a little over a week, and I read an article earlier today about older beautiful women which prompted me to make the status in the image above on FB.

When I am old
I will dye my hair purple.
But probably only the mohawk. 
I'll be proud to be grey.
When I grow old
I will say 
FUCK!
As loud as I damn well 
Please.
Growing old is 
NOT
For wimps.
I am not a wimp
Therefore,
I WILL grow old. 
I will wear bright colors.
And mismatched socks.
And no matter what
I'll still say SHIT a lot.
I will be the old lady
With the NERF gun pointed
At the kids crossing my yard.
But have cookies and soda for them
When they return to apologize.
They say to grow old gracefully.
I will grow old
However I damn well please.
Likely raising Hell 
My dress flapping in the breeze. 
I will be the one
Others gossip about.
Without a care in the world
Refusing to bow out.
With my purple mohawk 
And greying sides,
Wrinkled tattoos and
Still watching the tides.
I'll eat what I want
And do as I please.
For no one can take
My freedom from me.

~APA 2017

Posted in C-PTSD, chronic pain, creativity, depression, empath life, eviction, food cravings, friends, grad school, health, history, homeless, job hunting, life, medical, Personal, research, silliness, storage

9/21: Like I Really Need to Write More on Here Today… SQUIRREL!!! (shit)

*sigh* It feels strange to NOT be begging for help after the last several days. I would say the last week-ish has been madness for me. I went from “great! I’m gonna get back to school and finish my degree!” to Cluster(fuck) Headache for 6 days, then that resolved, then “oh shit, storage!!! help!”

No wonder I’m freaking exhausted right now. I think most people would just curl up into a ball after the past 8 days. Actually, I kinda want to do that. I also want Thai food… and Hot & Sour Soup. I LOVE me some really good H&S soup. It better be a bowl of incredible goodness that can clear the magma chambers of Mt St. Helens… nice and hot. Dammit.

I had nothing left… well, not enough to order food via Postmates. Also, they’re being assholes with my debit card… sooo…. yeah. I ended up with Annie’s Gluten Free Mac & Cheese… microwave M&C… it’s decent… but it isn’t Pad Thai and H&S soup.

In case anyone who reads this blog hasn’t noticed, 2017 has really, REALLY SUCKED for me. And I’m not even bringing political fuckery into that picture.

Oh… yeah… when I’m tired, I get all rambly… like now.

Someone sent me a message request on FB… asking if there was a way for me to split my stuff up and have friends store it. I still haven’t accepted his message (I will, really) and replied, but this is my answer in case anyone else was wondering the same thing: No one I know has the room. Two friends (well, married pairs of friends, so four friends, technically)

Oh look… SQUIRREL!!!!

Where was I? Oh yeah… friends of mine are holding a few bins of fabric from when I had tried to downsize a previous storage unit and hauled them back to my apartment… and then the management said “no… you can’t have all those in your apartment… it’s a fire hazard” … welp… fuck. I need to get those bins back from said friends (one pair has asked when that would be possible… ummm.. when I can make enough room in storage?).

One must understand geeks/creatives like me. We have “stuff” … a lot of “stuff.” Some of the “stuff” in storage can be (and will be… once I can reach it) downsized, trashed, etc. Some will get sold off… I really don’t need three sets of speakers. One set… one is good. I have a buyer for one pair… some furniture will be broken down and trashed… I kinda beat them up a bit during the eviction. Sadly.  That really was a nice sideboard… it would just need a lot of shoring up with metal bits to hold it together (which I could realistically do… not sure yet)

(don’t mind me… my brain is bouncing around between ‘things’ as I type… this is kinda ‘stream of consciousness’ blogging when I’m like this)

I don’t have the physical energy (yay for chronic pain/fatigue… NOT!!!) to tackle my storage unit alone. I get a few feet in and I need to sit my ass down and rest. I am not joking.

This has been a wild week. Still need to play catch up with school stuff (thinking of taking my Chromebook, Kindle, and iPod with me tomorrow and alternate between school things and working on storage… I’d be offline, as it’s one huge steel and concrete building… signal? What signal? Psshhh).

One of the many things I am grateful for with this week is an answer to the issue of my headaches. The fact that it responded well to oxygen therapy is HUGE for me. I’ve been on birth control to help manage hormones, as they were presenting after every other month’s cycle. We chalked it up to wonky hormones and have been managing them that way. But even if hormones are affecting them, the headaches are something else. I looked up “one sided headaches” and cluster headaches were the clearest answer. While migraines and tension headaches can present on one side, they tend to be present on either side, and mine have always been on the right. Cluster headaches are always one sided and most commonly on the right. No one really knows what causes them. I looked at a few medical sites. But oxygen therapy helps them. Seriously, it fucking WORKED. 15 minutes breathing pure oxygen made the vast majority of the pain go away (I also have TMJ pain, so that wasn’t helping either).

Medical stuff is one of the “big uglies” that has impeded my life. If I even tried to list the shit I’ve been through that has sidelined me for some length of time… I know I’d forget something. Big things, little things… everything from Cellulitis to breaking a toe… This year, it was the eviction, which exacerbated my back injury, knee injuries, drove me deeper into depression, sidelined schooling and job hunting to some degree… I’m not fully out of the woods, but feeling better. It’s been a shit year, but I’m slowly climbing back out of the abyss.

With a little help from my friends (and a few strangers online).

When I got back from my errands today (which ended with an eye exam and ordering new glasses… I’m getting old… new pairs will be bifocals… and Voc Rehab is covering them as they are something needed for working), the number of page hits for this little personal blog were higher than I’d ever had since I started blogging. I’ve had different sites/blogs over the years. This is my personal one. I have another one I’m working on starting, but it’ll take me a bit. It’ll be about archives and history. That’s what my grad degree is in. But other than linking to it from here, I want to keep them separate. Last thing I need is potential fellow archives folks (and potential bosses/coworkers) seeing all my personal ramblings…. yeeaaahhhh, no. It was around 172 at the time. Now? 188.

I think I’ve gotten most of the rambling out of my system. That’ll be all for the night… I think.

~A

Posted in creativity, crowdfunding, dreams, emergency, eviction, friends, grad school, life, Personal, storage, transitions, urgent

9/21: post 1: 12 hours before auction #crowdfunding 

Just for safety sake, let’s go with 11am as the deadline. Could things change? Maybe. I’m trying to BEAT the auction, not bid in it. 

What it will cost: $1025+ lock purchase

What I have: $609(as I was typing this, a donation came in. I now have 709)

What it would coat to replace what is replaceable: at least $15,000, bare minimum. 

After this save, I have school funds coming in that can cover the next few months. It just isn’t going to show in time for this week. I just need a little more help. I’m not perfect. I screw up a lot of things. See you when dawn breaks. Maybe a miracle will happen while I’m trying to sleep.

~A

Posted in asexuality, cats, chronic pain, cosplay, creativity, crowdfunding, depression, emergency, grad school, LGBTQIA Pride, life, Personal, storage

9/16: Saturday Check in & #crowdfunding

Still #crowdfunding. Not sure when school funds will show, so I can’t count on them. I have until 9/21 (preferably the day before) to get the full $1025 (will have about half, I think, by Monday) before auction. Auction is at noon 9/21. Please share even if you can’t donate.

I’ve been quiet due to a few things: catching up and managing shit for school stuff. Getting my headaches from hell. Etc.

I’ve long believed my headaches were a combo of tension and migraine, but Cluster Headache actually fits what I get better. Predominately on one side of the head, can last for days, etc… I don’t get auras or the usual stuff of migraines… so I think it’s more Cluster with a little Tension thrown in. And yes, I still have it. Been battling it since about Thursday. They tend to be triggered by hormone imbalances (the girly ones)… so I’m on birth control to manage them. I’m a week out from my next shot (I get Depo every three months) and the headache is VERY obvious right now.


In other “news” I’m developing a new Fursona. If y’all haven’t figured out I’m a Furry by now… may Bast help you. My primary one has been Jaeli, who is a character from one of my manuscripts. Still love her, but with my lioness fursuit of Zumai (the Cowardly Lioness), I wanted to develop a fun, toony character.

Her name is Aili (AY-lee) and she’s a Calico kitty with Ace/Asexual flag colors (black, grey, white, and purple). She is asexual like me, and she loves being a total ham. I’ll be commissioning a partial suit of her from a local friend and I’m going to try my hand and drawing her ref sheet.


I’ve had so many topics floating around in my head the last few days, but every time I’m able to write them down, I’ve lost the idea. So, you just have a catch-up thread for now.

~A

Posted in artsy stuff, creativity, depression, life, Personal

9/12: Catharsis

While I prefer writing as my creative medium (with photography as my second), I do occasionally dip into other creative areas. Lately, I’ve wanted to paint. Getting small canvases and the cheapest paints I could afford (on sale… woohoo!!), I set out to do three small paintings… that quickly turned into a series of three.

While I won’t show the work in progress of it here, I will say this: mapping out the trio has been a journey. You’ll understand when you see them. It’s been emotional and healing. Just as with my writing, I’ve put a piece of myself into these paintings. They will be mostly paint, but with some mixed media  for added emphasis. Each one tells part of a story.

And yes, I do intend on selling the series. I’m not sure of the price yet.

On one of them, one I just finished the base image on, I’m really surprised at myself. I’ve never been super confident with visual arts (except for photography). Mostly stemming from my mother quashing my attempts. I’m no Rembrandt or anything, but it’s turning out really well and I’m very happy with the progress. The more I look at that canvas, the more confident I get.

I’ll be finished soon…

~A

Posted in artsy stuff, cats, creativity, crowdfunding, emergency, eviction, grief, Personal, storage, urgent

9/10: Deadlines, #crowdfunding, and @Chewy

#CROWDFUNDING: It turns out that the auction is on the 21st, not the 15th. I had guessed the 15th because when I’ve gone through this before, it was always the 15th or as close to it as possible. But this time, it’s the 21st (which is a Thursday, so I find it odd, but okay). So I have a SMIDGE more time, but not really by much. If the two people whom I’ve talked to do send what they say they’ll be able to send, I’ll have roughly 500 between them and what I have in my accounts.

So I’m roughly halfway there. If I get more TR work this week, I’ll have a little more, but unless I get a really big job or two, it won’t cover me the rest of the way.


A few months back, I got a call from the manager of my former apartment building that a package was there. It was “kind of urgent” and since I didn’t live there anymore, I technically shouldn’t have packages sent there. I didn’t know what it was, so I sent off to go pick it up. It was a 1-800-Flowers delivery from Chewy, the pet supply website. I had talked to a CS person there a couple weeks before and had mentioned I lost JoJo to congestive heart failure in the midst of my eviction. The flowers were a beautiful arrangement in a vase.

So, I’m still (obviously) unemployed and money is tight, so I haven’t been able to order my normal stuff from them. On Friday, I got a call from Fedex that they had a package that couldn’t be delivered to my PO Box. I was going bonkers trying to figure out if this package was something I’d ordered (interview clothes) or something from my wishlist that maybe someone sent… I had them route it to a local store that is now a pick-up location for Fedex. Picked it up today. A small metallic blue bubble wrap package.

From Chewy.

Inside was a card: wp-image-1885802957

And two 6×6 paintings. JoJo

wp-image-956431916

And Portia.

wp-image-398707042

If you want to inspire customer loyalty, it’s stuff like this… hell, even the flowers were more than enough… to make a customer for life.

Showing compassion and caring for a customer is how customer service should be done. I know, as that’s my own philosophy from working in retail. Go above and beyond, help and show that you care about what you’re doing. This is something that’s hard to find in bigger companies. It’s all about the numbers and speed anymore, not about making sure your customers walk out the door wanting to keep doing business with you. Instilling loyalty through caring and compassion is something missing in retail anymore. I’m glad to see Chewy doing good.

~A

Posted in anxiety, creativity, crowdfunding, depression, dreams, emergency, grad school, homeless, job hunting, life, Personal, poetry, semicolon, storage, urgent, writing

9/8: Stand Still

(#crowdfunding as usual. I wasn’t intending to post a poem, but the words and the image in my mind wouldn’t go away. This is how I feel right now. Unedited. Unsure.)

Brace myself.
The wind may come
Unexpectedly.
Knocking me down.
Frozen.
Stuck.
I cannot turn around.
Things to do but nothing
Propels me
Forward.
One path blocked.
I look down another seemingly
Open path.
So many hurdles
Hidden.
The fog keeps them a secret.
Another path.
Alas, too steep to climb.
Another washed out.
Where do I go?
I stand still.
Unsure of my path.
At a
Standstill.

~A