NO idea.

          I could not, if I tried, tell you what I do with my days. And at some times, I feel like some incredible loser suffering from the curse my family is under, but other times I’m like. What’s different about my life now than when I didn’t feel this way about myself? Oh, right, not spending 42-45 hours a week at a job I couldn’t stand working with some select humans, and by select I mean wonderfully crafted examples of what makes a fucking terrible human being. See, I don’t want to be told there’s some inherent virtue in working yourself to a frazzle because it’s “normal.” Maybe I got more burnt out than I realized because like…the first two decades of my life were pretty trauma riddled. I don’t think people notice when they’re in crisis mode if they’re usually in crisis mode. It makes you apprehensive of the calm times. I think. Like I know.

But. Well. I don’t want to blame 2020, but 2020 kind of happened and now my life is WEIRD.

See. Lets see how abridged I can get. I graduated from high school in 2006, two weeks after that I moved out because I knew I had to get away and stay away from my dad. I call him W and Willis a lot, so keep up, same guy.

I went to college, it took my 5 years to get my B.A., then I spent a year working full time at the job I had from high school all the way through that first degree. Then my at the time boyfriend and I were like…this is uncool. So I applied to graduate school downstate as an excuse for us to move. We both landed jobs fairly quickly. Stupidly enough, I found a job incredibly similar to my old one. I worked at a family owned pet store from age 17 to 24, then I worked at a Petco from 24 to 27. At 27, almost at the exact same time I finished graduate school (3 years for an M.A. in the same pointless field) I started my first office job. I had despised retail so much by that point, I was incredibly happy at the office job. At first. I mean, no customers and no weekends  (sort of…), and paid holidays and an actual hour for lunch every day, that’s all pretty magical when you’ve worked retail for 11 years.

          But, the office job was compliance at a trucking company. It was horrible in such a multi-level way I can’t get into to, but rest assured, I fucking hated it this place too by the end. Multitude of reasons. But having put 5 years in, I’m not going to say it’s because I somehow couldn’t handle the culture of the industry, which they like to imply when someone burns out and leaves. No. Y’all are toxic. Anyway.

          So I whiled away 5 years of my life at this office job. Also, I moved from our first apartment downstate into a rental house almost the same month I started my office job. Then, in the March of 2020 when I quit that job, we also moved. So twice now I’ve changed jobs and homes at the same time. I’m like that though, some weird sort of Taurus, if you ask me.

          So, March – September 2020 was the first time in my life since the age of 16 that I wasn’t working. Well, I worked a low paying part time at home gig. And I was also hired for a new job in July, but because of Covid-19 situations, couldn’t start until September. Well, this new job was underwriter at a mortgage company. And boy. Let me tell you. That is not the job for me. Sorry, I do not have the actual price that level of mental frazzling has for me, but it’s not $30/hour. Yeah. I miss making that much. I lasted there 7 months, quitting right after my 33rd birthday.

          And now, here I am, wildly unemployed again, for my 34th birthday. Actually, now that I think about it, the last time I had a job for my birthday was 2019. Jeez.

          I had an online teaching job that ran from May to March, but although the company won’t admit they’re shutting down, I haven’t taught a class in months. Which sucks because that job was definitely how I was paying the rent. I DO still maintain my at home part time job, and I DO make more at it than I did. But. Still. My fuck what a pay cut. After spending a terrible ten months trying to adjust to that pay, it’s lost. I know I could go back to work a normal job. BUT. A few things.

          One, we’re possibly in the process of buying a house. Right now it’s not looking great because the one we want needs too many repairs and the selling agent is being a wang about paying for them. It’s the $800 on an inspection and appraisal for nothing that deeply saddens me. That’s a ton of money in my world, kids.

          Also. I have to go to fucking Arkansas for a week in May. Because my mother needs someone to help her on and off the plane. We have a transfer in Chicago with less than an hour. She walks more slowly, with a walker, than a baby crawls. This is going to be a nerve-destroying nightmare. She was invited to attend her great-niece’s high school graduation. And for some reason we have to stay 5 nights for this endeavor.

          So. Yeah, you know that Master’s degree I mentioned? My mom didn’t even make it to that ceremony for her own daughter, because she was off her pain meds for a surgery and didn’t think she could handle sitting that long. It’s a good excuse but also I’m like…why did you schedule your surgery so close to the ceremony date? She knew well in advance. So. I’m annoyed about this trip on many levels.

          So I think it might be annoying to be looking at buying a house and moving AND have to take a week off in May while also attempting to lock down new employment.

          My new plan is to start looking intensively when I get back from Arkansas.

          So, what have I been doing during my time of unemployment?

          Lol I wish I knew.

          Every day I cook and wash dishes and shower and do yoga. Also laundry and stuff for the cats. There’s getting groceries about once a week. And. Uh. Reading? Lol not really, I tend to scroll TikTok while eating alone, which is almost always. Writing? HA. I mean I did today. But, when there’s usually paid writing to be done, I’m not going to be working on my book. I clearly don’t work on it when there isn’t either. I want to finish it, really but again, unsure where my time goes.

          Lately, and only lately, I’ve started playing the Sims obsessively. Because, IDK I like an addictive habit no matter what. So that’s taking my time now. But I don’t know what else is.

          Still not pregnant. Obviously. Trust me, it isn’t lost on me that it would be ideal to have an infant right now when I’m not working, because the sleep deprivation would be less detrimental. But. What can I say, nothing is happening there. I try to limit my caffeine and alcohol. But. Well. Need I say more.

          Trying not to focus on life’s disappointments. Trying not to compare myself to people I know. Trying not to grow up to be like either of my parents. You know, the usual.

          It also isn’t lost on me that 2020 was the weird year of death, and I’m not even talking about Covid, because as usual this is all about me. But we put Felix down at the very beginning of 2020. I had never been present for the euthanasia of a pet before. It was horrible. Then I already told you about March 2020. Then Oscar, the Himalayan cat I’d had since the age of 17, died that June. Then Willis drank himself to death that August, then Ryan did the same that December. What a year.

          Then in 2021 I got my first four tattoos that weren’t my permanent eyeliner, which had retouched in 2020. I’m noticing that not wearing mascara every day is really helping with the longevity of that tattoo.

          Honestly, if I’m really delving into it, the only things I can think of that make me happy are bad for me. I guess the notion of getting another book written, of having that to show for my time spent on this earth.

          And that’s it I guess. Major highlights are continued infertility, attempted first time home purchase, and another long bout of unemployment. And yes, still an alcoholic stoner. Like that’s going to change. It would it I got pregnant, of course, but…until then…what am I supposed to do with myself?

          Yes. I hear it. Anyway.

          One thing. When I move. There’s this one box. I opened it the day it was shipped to me. And that is the first and only time I did. Perhaps there will be a day when it doesn’t enrage me. But it still does. But also, what, I’m going to just throw out a portrait of myself? Really? Okay no I still want it. Just wish I didn’t have to be like…HA, remember the most *recent* time you allowed your feelings to be hurt? God you’re fucking stupid sometimes. Like I’d ask if I’m going to learn but I know I won’t so why bother.

          But, at the same time. I wonder what life has in store. I know I probably sound like I’m aspiring to be a 60s housewife. But. I guess I am. One who also writes books. And I don’t mind working from home, but I’m really going to try and never work outside of the house again, until I’m at something I’m actually passionate about. Like because it’s for a worthy cause or because I’m opening my own business or something.

          That’s all that’s happening in my life right now. I’m hoping the house works out. I’m hoping we actually get to have children. I *do* have an appointment with a fertility doctor, it’s a phone appointment, and it’s actually during my annoying sojourn to Arkansas. I’m going to lie and say it’s a new therapist, because then my secrecy and annoyance over questions will seem warranted. I just, don’t feel like having this shit broadcasted to everyone my mother/mother-in-law knows, so we don’t tell them anything. And there’s no point in informing siblings we’re not that close with, because then it’s this big secret being kept from the parents. My one friend knows. I mention her a lot, she’s the doctor. It’s always made me feel infinitely better that she doesn’t want kids. Like, it has nothing to do with me, of course, but her life decision has always made my struggles in that area seem all right…like, eh well she doesn’t have kids either. Plus, I don’t know how to put this but I’m not exactly envious of my friends with children. Like. I don’t want *their* kids. I want the ability to have my own. The only people I actually envy are the childfree by choice. The ones who legitimately and in no way want children. That seems so fucking nice. But, that’s not me. However, I WILL act like that, because it’s better to come off as a childless baby hater than…the sad barren field that I am. Okay I probably shouldn’t make such comparisons but it’s about me so.

          Why would I publish this on a blog but not want our families to know? Well. How has truly read this far? Maybe a few. The way probability works there’s going to be a few people even I appeal to.

          Also, interesting development. My husband and I are both coming to grips with the huge, huge, huge person problems we both have with Christianity. Willis professed to be a devout Christian. At one point he sent me a text that said “I strongly advise you to read Ephesians something something” it was a verse about submitting to the authority of your parents. A Pauline epistle. Barf. The car accident that essentially ruined my brother’s life occurred because he had to please Willis and attend his “alive” church one town over rather than the “dead” church he’d attended with our mom and myself for his entire life. The teenage girl who caused the accident was speeding in the rain on a Sunday morning because she was going to be a counselor at Lu Lay Lee, a Lutheran summer camp I had myself attended one summer, and was in a hurry to get there.

          Kind of weird, huh? I always thought so.

          It ruined his life because he got addicted to pain meds and awarded $100,000 at the age of 21. He has no money, no education, no work history, no car, he can’t even drive on the highway, and he’s still on methadone. He’s now nearly 37. Yeah. Sometimes I feel like it sounds like I’m making my family up. It’s shocking what a terrible human being my father was. What happens to children raised by a narcissist and the wife who isn’t strong enough to remove herself and her children. I know, I should think better of my mother and brother. But, I just don’t. In my mind I’ve outfoxed their inability to nurture me by rejecting any notion of such when offered. You can only cruelly reject an upset child so many times before she doesn’t even think to turn to either of you when she’s upset. Only that won’t do either, and she gets emotionally battered into a breakdown when her father is angered by the fact that she’s upset about something and won’t tell him what it is, because that means she thinks she’s so much better than him. That happened to me, when I was upset about something trivial at school, freshman year in high school, and when I didn’t want to tell Willis all about it, because I’m sure he was high and/or drunk and was in the mood to tell me a 45 minute story about his life in the 70s to cheer me up, but when I didn’t instantly mirror his mood, as I had been taught, he turned into a monster in a second, like he was good at doing. I will always remember being told at 14 that I counted for as much as a pimple on my dad’s ass, how dare I think I was too good to tell him why I was sad. Like. Whose father says that to them? How insecure and pathetic of a human being do you have to be in your late 40s to speak to your 14 year old like that? But. That was classic Willis. Take MY upset and turn it into a wrong I’ve committed. That’ll teach me to show any emotions in the future.

          And they wonder why I hated them.

          I have a theory I’m significantly more intelligent than the rest of them, and having seen the lot of them for what they are for most of my life…it’s warped me in a way I can’t change. All I can really do now is work to maintain the relationships I want in my life. Like with my husband, and best friend. Different people. But. If I’m being grotesquely honest, the thought of my entire family fills me with revulsion. Like it just sickens me when I think about being emotionally available for them. Like my mom said “No, I just want you,” when I asked if they wanted me to bring anything to Saginaw the day Willis died. It literally revolted me. Like ew. Since WHEN do we have that type of relationship, lady? SINCE WHEN?

          See, people like me are all pretty typical. We’re all just jabbering fucked up children on the inside. But I like also happen to be smart. Smart enough to get away at least.

          Other than that. I don’t know.  I always imagined I would have children and publish books. But. Who knew one of those would be way easier for me? Other than that, not much is happening. Other than, I still cannot tell you where my days go.

Retail Memory 1

Watching a Reddit thread about bad employment situations and, well this story came to mind.

When I started grad school I got a managerial job at a Petco. I’d worked at a family owned pet store throughout my bachelors so it seemed right. Petco had a rewards program at the time, spend $100 and get a $5 off coupon as long as you have a PALS account. Cashiers were instructed to ask every customer if they had a PALS, but I know from experience some people just don’t want to write out their address.

I had been there for all of a month. A cashier who had been at the store for years came through my line, which makes sense, only managers can give employee discounts. I didn’t know this cashier (Sarah was her name I think) went out of her way to make sure I was the only one around when she was rung up. She had a stack of $5 off coupons, to the point her bag of shitty Pedigree dog food was nearly free. Meaning she would have spent nearly $1000 in the store to earn so many $5 off coupons.

Well, later that day, one of the managers above me decided to wonder how an employee who never bought anything from the store (managers would know, we rang them up) had so much in rewards. Some easy investigation revealed Sarah was adding her own PALS account onto the purchase of any customer who didn’t give one. It seems like a victimless crime, but it’s still shady and dishonest. She knew exactly what she was doing.

She was confronted about the situation and decided to quit on the spot (she was leaving at the end of the summer for college, having been in community college until then, she was early 20s).

Then, THEN, my boss, the store’s general manager, had to point the finger at me a little bit, pointing out to me and others that I should have questioned why an employee could accrue so many PALS rewards. I was livid. I should have just assumed this employee was doing something fraudulent? I was new and a manager but I should have automatically been like “I’m sure this is a result of you stealing, you look like trash, you can’t afford to shop this much I can tell.” ???

This is just one of many many many different times the management at that store was a fucking CUNT. I dealt with her for nearly three years. She quit to go to a different job which promptly fired her less than a month later. Because she was useless and lazy and a fucking giant bitch on top of that. She added me on Facebook. She thought we were cool, despite having gone out of her way to treat me like shit for three years.

Fuck you Dianna. I hope you always get the cart with the bent wheel and you stub your pinkie toe every day.

I should write more retail stories.

Spiderweb /or/ Eloquent, but generally fucked and all over the place.

I couldn’t tell you what I do in a day, but they seem to go by quickly enough. It’s 11am. Have I been productive? Well, a little. I taught five classes. I don’t know how much longer I’ll have that job, which really fucking sucks because I actually like it. It’s because regulations changed and I can’t really get out of the fact that they now exclude my ability to do this job. How it’s gone on this far, and how much longer it will continue, are both largely unknown to me.

If and when I come to it, I have to find another at-home job. I cannot physically stand another desk job in a corporate office. Been there done that, friends. Even at $30/hour it wasn’t worth the severe emotional stress of my last office job. So I think you might now see the value my mental health has for me. Like fuck capitalism. I have never once met a self-identifying capitalist who wasn’t a shit person. Speaking of. I finally blocked grad school guy. I should have like three years ago. Why do we do that? Why do we expect people to change and become what we want them to be? It’s literally so stupid and not right. Not that it’s cool he was so garbage that he even drove me away. Historically the only ones who were toxic enough to do that were my father, and Ryan, and I guess lets call him portrait guy. And like…let’s be frank, it’s wildly pathetic how much I am willing to tolerate from someone. It’s not like I’m proud of this, or think it’s a good thing, but like…okay YOU fix how your brain was hard-wired from childhood. I’ll wait.

But really, the best thing you can do with a garbage toxic person is to cut them out of your life. This is not to say you need to irrationally remove anyone who has ever hurt or miffed you. That’s a recipe for deep unhappiness I should think. But. On the other hand. People do NOT get to treat you horribly because they’re related to you. READ IT AGAIN. Like. OMFG I cannot understand why this “FAMILY” dynamic means so fucking much to people. “They’re family!” is not a fucking justification for anything, let alone enabling someone or tolerating toxic abuse. It wasn’t easy ghosting my own father. It’s just what I did until he died though. It took six years. I don’t like them, but the simile patient like a crocodile comes to mind.

So, I blocked grad school guy. I should have done so in 2018, literally almost 3 years ago exactly, when he and I hung out the one and only time we would ever do so, after about a month of online flirting, and having known one another through a real-life avenue from years prior. He “thought” he “could blur the lines” of what was and wasn’t allowed in his marriage. SO, he lied to me and led me on, he let me think 100% that he was married to someone who fucked other people and knew he did likewise, as is the case with my husband and myself. He 100% led me to think we were hanging out to hook up. I’m not saying someone can’t back out because they change their mind…but…the reason he changed his mind turned this situation that was SUPPOSED to be fun and exciting into something terrible and embarrassing. Like I felt so hurt and wronged by all of it, perhaps more so than you know a normal would, and what had I done? I don’t know why I ever bothered to stay Twitter mutuals with this guy. ESPECIALLY when I think about how I had to drag a fucking explanation out of him, that he literally just said “I don’t think we should sleep together,” then offered to stay and talk about it, then left. It was. Weird. He should have had the fucking fortitude of character to tell me what happened instead of me having to seek it out because I really couldn’t deal with how upset I was by his actions.

I’m not saying this all isn’t on me for not removing him entirely. I think I thought we’d be friends one day? Like…I don’t know maybe I wanted him to still want me. Well. That was until last May. When things were weird with portrait guy I was talking to grad school guy about it. Since then, things had gotten quasi-flirtatious a few times but nothing wild. Then, this past weekend, he’s uncharacteristically drunk and DM-ing me, including the fucking topper for the evening “Sober me won’t admit it but I’m kinda into you FR” or something other dumbfuckery. The way he talks is the fucking worst.

So to that I was like HEH yeah I think we were always into each other, weren’t we? Like I didn’t think our problems stemmed from a lack of attraction, JUST THE FUCKING LIES MY GUY, JUST THE LIES.

Then, he drops a really specific fantasy at me that reeked of middle school flirtation, he’d never gone so far as to describe a PG13 situation he was pining for with me. It fucking irritated me. So I was like…you know how you called me the coyest person ever?

(Side note: I’m not coy. I’m cautious because I’ve been wildly hurt. Which…I’m willing to say is my fault, but like literally all I ever fucking do is love these people and all they ever do is destroy me then somehow THEY’RE hurt when they get to find out how angry I can be. )

So I was like, sometimes someone isn’t being coy, they just can’t tell if you’re being truly flirty or not.

Then he IMMEDIATELY backtracks. For someone who was juuuuust loving the idea of telling me about how he “wanted to watch a movie late a night with his hand on my thigh then make out in the car later” or something along these utterly juvenile lines he was like OMG wow no this is because I’m bored and 50+ miles away from my wife, I’m not trying to actually make things happen, then fucking ADORABLE clincher “Turns out my actions have consequences????!! I’ll try to be more mindful in the future.”

Oh I don’t give a fuck about you or what you do in the future FRIEND.

I’m SO sick of pretending I’m not angry.

That isn’t supposed to piss me off? It made me feel ENTIRELY like an object he picks up and puts down at will for his amusement. NOT INTO IT.

SO, while I’m on the topic of the worthless men I adore. You know what it’s time for.

How long have you been paying online attention to me? Do you know what I mean when I say portrait guy? Where’s the portrait? With his books. It literally sickens me to think I sent him a hand annotated copy of CF1. Jesus I hope he threw it out. I blocked him recently too. Again, WHY THE FUCK hadn’t I done that in May? What did he do? Led me on in a BIG WAY and then IN HIS WORDS ghosted me. Does it please me to no end that the woman he became involved with right then dumped him hard with no explanation not that long after? Of fucking course it does. If you can’t admit that sort of thing you’re probably a fucking liar who’s either in denial or just very self righteous or both. Or you’re a better person than me. I’ve met a few. But, I’ve met WAY more of that first type.

I was hoping portrait guy would apologize. That’s what I was telling myself at first. At it’s zenith, he and I spoke on Facetime for 6 hours. At once. Not total. And then it fell to shit literally that night, but he couldn’t just tell me that. Instead he told me he “wasn’t backing out just yet” but then…proceeded to let me know about his “for real” girlfriend about a month later, basically tossing me aside because my feelings didn’t matter or where never part of the consideration in the first place.

I don’t know what it is that screams “use me” but…it’s got to be something.   

I need to stop making room in my life, however small, for those who dared to treat me like I’m insignificant.

See that’s my problem. Like when you’re super arrogant your feelings still get hurt. I’m also smart enough to like rationally assess these feelings as they come at me. But also. It’s a goddamn privilege to be loved by me, and those unwise enough to squander that are undeserving of my attention in any form. And they don’t make me sad for long. But I will always be angry.

Easy to group them together because I interacted with both on Twitter, though I only met portrait guy online.

I’d warrant I was closer with portrait guy. I guess it makes sense. He’s 8 years older than grad school guy and me, he’s that much more skilled at love and attention bombing. I don’t know how to do that. That I-can-make-others-love-me manipulative talent SO many victims of abuse have…I just…got like the fucking opposite. It’s fucking unfair. I think it’s because Willis was…unique. You fucking hate to call a narcissist that but…he didn’t give me your classic daddy issues, that’s for sure. I kind of wish he’d just abandoned us all. I’m not trying to trivialize the pain of others, but we would have been so, so, so much better off if he had.

BUT, I hear it’s like being rich, only the outside looking in has that shine on it. Like you don’t think anything of the people you’ve tricked or finessed into loving you. Also, I mean, I am hot and smart, I DO know what it’s like when someone you’re not into at all is really into you, and it’s unpleasant to say the least. So. I get it.

But. I mean, with a few rare exceptions, people just like…don’t like me. I’m NOT trying to make anyone argue or feel sorry for me, truly, that was a favorite of Willis’ he would bait you into saying something so it could later be used against you. I am not exaggerating at all. Again, imagine a less intelligent child up against him. Wait you don’t have to that’s my brother.

So, when I meet someone who I actually like, and am attracted to, who likes ME, which is arguably the hottest thing someone can do…do you not see how it’s hard? And takes a long time to get over?

But…I have a story, and Jesus let’s hope its short right. I have paying work I need to do, especially when one considers I will probably need a new job soon.

The Easter, Good Friday to be precise, of 2005 I was accused of being demon possessed because I did not wish to attend my father’s annoying very long, drawn-out Pentecostal church service. I had my own church I attended, where I was an active member of the youth group, and I also attended a religious high school. But no, I was supposed to leap with joy at the idea of spending 3 hours of a rare weekday off from school at a different church, one Willis ONLY joined because skanks from his Art Van job went there. Not even joking. And I’ll call who I like a skank, kindly fuck yourself instead of coming at me with dime terminology like internalized misogyny.

But yeah, no, of course, Willis, your 17-year-old is definitely “being told” by a demon that she doesn’t want to go to your church. YES. That could be the only explanation. THIS was the person who had once told me I counted for as much as “a pimple on his ass” – because once I was upset and didn’t want to tell him why so he took that to be a deep personal insult and insinuation I thought I was better than him…I was 14 and very upset about something trivial that had happened at school….but….let’s make it about him and turn me into the villain….yeah that was my dad all right. I wonder if he was too fucked up in the moment to remember he said that to me. See, trouble is, I remembered. And fast forward three years and we’re at the demon possession accusation.

This accusation was nothing new. It came about whenever it suited Willis’ current assault on whomever. He DID pick on me the least, credit where credit is due…but not really. He still didn’t treat me well. BUT…I was the useless younger female child, the older boy was the one who was to take on every feature and facet of Willis’ identity, I was to shut the fuck up and help with the housework. See what I mean when I talk about how sexism saved me? The less exposed to W, the better, ESPECIALLY during those formative years. What was my fucking mother thinking letting us be raised by him? I will never feel guilt concerning her and if she doesn’t like that…she can turn back time.
And…let me tell you, being the one who was treated the least terribly made my mother in particular very resentful of me. In fact Willis’ need to abuse and manipulate my mother and brother probably influenced his better treatment of me, in that I flew under the radar much more. Truth be told, I got pretty good grades  and didn’t really get into trouble or ask for much. I knew better. I also bailed as soon as I was legally able. So. Measure my happiness at home with that. He wanted my mom to think I cared more for him for as a parent, HIGHLY UNTRUE. He wanted my brother to think HE was the issue with them, that Willis and I were as close as could be. Gross. I fucking hated him.

So. In 2005. I was accused of being told by a demon to not attend Willis’ church. He just *couldn’t* understand it otherwise. That was one of his things. He acted SO baffled, SO boggled by your feelings, it shortly felt ridiculous to be having them at all. See, I knew what gaslighting was WAY before anyone taught me that word. Not to hipster at you or anything.

I told therapist Dave, back when I saw him, about this particular demon possession memory. Dave asked if it made me feel bad, being accused of being demon possessed, that only a really bad kid would be told such a thing.

And like…at 16??? He thought I was mentally a child at 16??? Oh naïve therapist Dave.

I was like…no, it didn’t make me feel bad about myself, it just made me angry, at him, that this was my father, that THIS was how he acted, that I was being handed yet another reason to fucking hate him.

And Dave seemed pleased by that. He was like “Well that’s good.”

And I was like.


Anger. It’s the answer. It’s right there, as repressed as sexuality and incredulity at one’s religious upbringing.

So, I think my advice is, get fucking angry and block people and entirely remove them from your life. Do you stop thinking about them? Yeah I didn’t say that. But. You deserve the peace of knowing they AT LEAST know how you feel about them. Don’t spare them because you’re hoping they’ll change THEY WON’T, don’t keep ties with them because one day they might apologize THEY WON’T.

I knew it. I SO knew it. Getting angry. It’s the key here people.

Not all the time, and not over stupid shit, and never ever forget that everyone you love is going to hurt you, it just depends on what you can forgive if you go on with them.

But. Recognize when there’s something you can’t forgive.

You will feel MUCH better than pretending it’s not there.

Jesus fuck this is long. I should blog it unedited. I actually have grooming related to do items today and it’s wild. A year is long enough, I will no longer have hot pink or fire engine red hair. I’m going a copperier natural red. Here’s wishing it works out. I also need to do my nails and toes because affordable luxury am I right? Tuesday and Wednesday night I’m staying overnight with a friend. Like an actual friend from childhood, we’ll shop and drink and eat at restaurants. Super excited, haven’t seen her in like two years, haven’t done anything fun with someone other than my spouse in two years. God I hope I can’t detect “Omg she looks worse” in her face when I see her. She’s made of like magic genetics and forgets it sometimes.

Anyway. Take care. Don’t forget if you want to know more about portrait guy – there’s old blogs, old tweets on both twitters, and just fucking DM me.


CW: thorough discussion of migraine pain/triggers

Today’s the day, I’m finally going to do it. I’m going to keep track of how much weed I smoke. I know it sounds like something a person should have a decent handle on. But sometimes I don’t even realize I’m doing something. Like most of the time.

I’m on bowl #2 currently. I have A LOT of technical writing to take a look at until I work again at 7:30 tonight. Without boring you with details that serve no purpose, in general I work 7:30-10:30am every day (except Sundays which I’ve been taking off to write enjoyable things also a person should get to sleep in at least once in awhile) and then on my “busy” days I also crack out a 7:30-10:30pm set. Weekends are a little different, especially now in the summer. I must say without going into much about it, I really do love my current job. For many reasons, mostly it’s 100% work from home and that will never change. I found out, through nearly six painful years of my life, that I cannot work in a corporate office. Been there done that friends. My doctor best friend is like that, she’s always had an extreme aversion to an office. Coming from 11 years of retail I was ecstatic for a desk job. And then I proceeded to tolerate a toxic department at a garbage company that, again no details, has a bad local reputation. I’m not great at telling when I’m miserable. Not until something comes along and reminds me.

But I’ll be honest, lately I’ve been missing the beginning of this year when my biggest problem was hating my job and staring down the do I quit or stick it out dilemma. It’s like as soon as that got fixed other shit happened. Which, to be honest, I’m still pretty messed up about, which is more embarrassing than anything because I couldn’t matter less to the other party involved. Which, boy, what a *new* experience for me…(please, sense the sarcasm, even through the screen).

Other than that, I’ve been doing what I do best: exist, get things done. I mean, since I don’t think I’ll ever have kids it’s kind of like right this is my expectation for life. And you can find that depressing but it’s also liberating. Right? Don’t care.

Last night was really rough. And, for once, I felt compelled to document not only my weed consumption, but what happens to me.

When did they start? I recall some in high school, definitely in undergrad, definitely since then. The frequency and intensity is contingent on other things. And, without fail, when I’m in the worst throes of it I’m sobbing and overwhelmed by the idea that there are always things in my life making it terrible that I have no control over. Like. Well. You know his name. What it was I should say, as he is past tense.

The times I’ve sought medical help for them I’ve been told they sound like migraines, but mine are in my neck. It’s a tension migraine in my neck and it’s incapacitating beyond belief. There’s a long preamble, which you can sometimes try to ignore or mistake for allergy issues (which I have a great deal of, multiple times per year, living where I do, so this happens) or just not realize what it is until it’s too late. I have migraine meds, I’ve tried three now, the first two doing not much besides give weird side effects. I’ll be honest, last night I think it helped at least a little. That’s the thing, it’s usually short-lived relief and MAYBE you can fall asleep during that window and stay that way and wake up without the tension, but…I capped that word for a reason friend.

The pain itself starts on the sides of my head (easy to mistake for hunger/caffeine craving) and at the base of my skull where one would consider the neck to begin. Then, as time goes on, the muscles along the back of my neck and up my skull get harder and tighter. It’s noticeable to the touch for other people. It feels like what was once soft muscle has been replaced with steel, and also the back of my head feels like its being pulled towards the base of my spine.

The plan of action is to take a Tylenol sinus just in case this is rough congestion, could very well be. Then an Imitrex because they take forever to kick in and it might not help anyway, so start that possibly useless process ASAP kid. Then, obviously by this point the full-on migraine sensitivities are upon you, light and noise are excruciating, everything causes nails on a chalkboard type pain, you’re amazed at how many tiny sources of light are in your house. I have thrown up from migraine pain three times. It’s horrendous and exactly what you think, it’s like you’re in such pain you’re sick to your stomach from it. I’d never known what that was like until my late twenties. Which I guess is good in a way.

For my neck I used to think heat was the answer, but it did nothing. Freezing my neck/head as much as possible is the best route. It sometimes helps enough to get me to sleep. I don’t know if it’s just that it numbs it or that the cold shrinks blood vessels and over-surged blood vessels were the problem to begin with. I don’t know the science I know what might bring me some relief. The door of my freezer is dedicated to housing the different freezing implements I use when I have one of these.

Then, after you’ve taken the drugs available and chilled yourself as much as possible, it’s time to play contort yourself in the weirdest position possible to get comfortable and attempt to fall asleep. If you’re in too much pain to sleep then lie in the dark and try to be as comfortable as possible. Again, this might not be a capability, then you’re just thrashing around crying.

I don’t know why they make me cry. If it’s the pain, the mental fatigue I know I’m about to endure, or my body’s attempt to run my sinuses open, which sometimes definitely helps the whole situation. So. Probably all three.

So last night I went to bed with what I knew was one of these, hoping I’d just sleep it through, which can happen. Yeah no. Two hours later I awoke after a dream during which I KNOW I removed my retainer and handed it to someone. I’m always doing that then I have to rip our bed apart finding it the next day. A king bed is a horrible thing to own except when you’re sleeping on it. Anything else you’re like fuck this stupid giant mattress. I nearly got stuck under it. Anyway.

I slept on the couch to spare my husband the sleep loss, he can’t do anything anyway beyond massage my neck/skull, which he definitely is better at than me, he has stronger hands, obviously. But, again, he had to work so why should he also not sleep. Also the couch is the coldest spot in the house. We have central air but like…sort of. Our kitchen and bedrooms pretty much aren’t air conditioned but the bathroom and basement and living room get blasted. This is our first rental with central air in like 8 years so I don’t care.

I fell asleep sitting up for a few minutes at a time while the Imitrex kicked in. You know why you can tell it MIGHT start making you feel better soon? The side effects start. Because whoo boy let me say those are always going to happen. It’s mostly having to piss like 3 times more than your usual, which is SO cool when you’re desperately trying to sleep. Then there’s the weird shaky legs. You know the tremors you can get when you have a bad fever? It’s like that in your legs and maybe arms. Again, these things are wildly worth it if it works. IF. You can also wait two hours and take another if you don’t think it worked. Yes because we all want to lose that much sleep while we’re in incredible pain.

Between 1 and 6am this morning I slept maybe 2 hours collectively.

And then, post migraine, there’s this AWESOME period I have always called “drained hyper fatigue.” The only thing that comes close is when you’re incredibly hung over and your entire body just hurts. It’s that without the other hangover issues. Your neck no longer hurts but it’s incredibly sore. Usually, for whatever reason, my abs are very sore from it like the crying and possible retching must do it. Also, maybe from the migraine, maybe the meds you had to take on an empty stomach, you’re going to be “am I going to vomit” queasy for awhile too.

Then it’s over. It’s like IDK a 6 hour process? They’re so fucking terrible I find myself annoyingly happy to just be alive afterwards.

This morning I taught 3 short classes but cancelled the long one I usually teach at 9:30. I just couldn’t. I’ll work again tonight and tomorrow morning and then will be off until Monday morning. Which is good because I have 12000 words due by the end of the month and by the “end” they mean like 8 days before that. It’s not impossible because these writing assignments are hilariously broken down. Like they almost feel like a paper I’d have written in grade school. There’s literally an intro and outro section.

It’s WILD to me that somehow at 33 I fell backwards into two jobs that I actually like that actual have like…a  glimmer of similarity with all of my stupid and stupidly expensive degree work. I’m not devaluing anyone else’s college achievements, truly, I just think it’s all a big quasi-intellectual echo chamber circle jerk and that would be fine if people would admit it but you know they don’t. So it’s nice to be like…huh…if I told someone me degrees (BA/MA both in English language and literature) and my current jobs (English tutor, technical writer) like…holy shit those things sound right??? No way.

So, in an effort to actually talk about something positive that makes me happy, I know right it’s surprising I can even identify them given my usual tone on here, I actually do really like my jobs.

One good thing is my job makes it possible for me to work around migraines. I’ll be penalized slightly for a last-minute cancellation, within 4 hours is frowned at. Anything less than 4 days’ notice isn’t great. But if you can’t you can’t, as I like to say. But only to myself after I’ve considered putting myself through something.

Were you wondering if my substance abuse problems help with migraines? Well, booze isn’t wonderful, because the stomach issues I’m already going through make me not want to add more acidity to the situation. Also, there’s a warning right on the Imitrex about how mixing with alcohol may cause excessive dizziness. I should scribble out that last word and write “awesomeness.” It’s not good, I’m SURE it’s really linked to doing something terrible to your liver, but my lord being drunk and taking an Imitrex is…some shit. I’ve never done it for fun, mind you.

Does weed help? Well, as is always the case with weed, it does not help remove pain in any way, BUT if it can help you relax/concentrate on not your excruciating pain/fall asleep, then yeah it brings some relief. But like last night I couldn’t be bothered with the effort, not when I kept having to walk upstairs to piss and back downstairs to attempt to fall back asleep because our bedroom is 20 degrees hotter than the rest of the house at night. Having a shut door doesn’t help but this is the life I chose when I got a cat named Lily so here I am.

How often are they? About once a month. Sometimes they seem to coincide with periods sometimes they don’t so it’s possibly a hormonal thing? It’s on the Official To Do list, going to a different doctor for this situation. I never said enough to my old doctor for him to suggest a neurologist. I also now live by one of the best hospital networks in the state. If you’re keeping track I’m nearly done with my third bowl of today.

I now have 9 hours until I must work again. I am entirely ready for classes tonight, as all it involves prep wise is taking notes for the vocab words I’ll use for extra material at the end, if needed, and it’s almost always needed. Tonight I have 4 short classes and then one long, all right in a row, which…my fuck does your face hurt after that. But the things I used to make my head/neck/face cold because migraines also work for soothing this so there I go.

That’s my migraines. I wish a lot of bad things would happen to those I merit deserving of such but I wouldn’t wish this on anyone. It’s literally debilitating. At my terrible trucking company job the only thing that ever made me leave work early was a migraine. Because the last thing a person can do is sit under fluorescent lighting and stare at a computer screen in that condition. I tried many times.

Not much else is happening in my life. My husband is going to be gone all weekend next weekend, he’s going camping at a Beer Fest of some sort with friends. Which, cool, I’m glad he has fun plans, he needs them, he’s as depressed as I am if not more so. But also it just fucking depresses me that, if I so desired, I could have sexy plans for the entire weekend. Or, if not sex, could have first dates lined up with people I found interesting enough to meet.

As luck would fucking have it, given the freedom to do literally anything I want sexually I…do nothing. I mean take “literally anything I want” not SO literally, but like, aside from treating someone like they’re my husband or wanting to move in/marry someone else it’s pretty much whatever.

And I even like the concept of having a boyfriend as well. It’s not that I’m against it. Theoretically. But. Have you ever looked into the WORK involved when you’re like me? See I don’t know what that is, because I, and see if you can follow this, don’t like labeling myself. I feel like we’ve become a label-fixated culture. For good reason in some cases, so please, spare me, BUT also…I think there’s a definite need to assign yourself as many badges as possible today. I hate doing it. What’s my sexual orientation? The fuck idk usually just dudes but I’m an alcoholic so you know, the weird down for anything most of us are. If you know, you know. What are my exact mental illnesses? IDK extreme childhood trauma and I’ve been in therapy for years; I’d say with extreme confidence depression is on the list. I’m not frequently anxious, though at times it happens. You think with the coffee and the weed I’d be WAY worse on that aspect. I always did a counselor not a psychologist/psychiatrist so I never dealt with someone wanting to do sessions plus meds. I’ve never been confused on my gender (and having pronouns in your social media bios is inclusive/supportive and annoys bigots so explain how that isn’t win/win), but the rest of it…eh, please, circle back to me.

So. Part of what I don’t feel like labeling is the idea that I have ZERO interest in randomly fucking people. Even the hot ones. Even ones who seem like cool people. It just grosses me out. Plus…the effort involved in having app profiles and filtering through everyone and actually getting a conversation going, the guy not being some creep or skeezbag or drastically less good-looking than I initially thought while being swipe generous, it’s soooo rare. I just. I’m tired thinking about the usual process. I always start a profile get overwhelmed and quit a few days later. What have I tried? A varying number of times: Bumble, Tinder, Feeld, Swing Lifestyle, FetLife, OK Cupid, Plenty of Fish, Adult friend finder, maybe others? I even had a paid OK cupid for a month once. To no avail.

Because for it to be worth it at all I would need to actually like the guy and be attracted to him. In either order. But do you want to know how many times that’s happened in the last 6 years? Three. How many times did it actually work out for me? Once. The first time. I can’t tell if I should give up or if this is trial and error. Ryan did the opposite of devastate me. In fact he’s the only guy who’s ever held that distinction. Ever. Out of the ones that have mattered to me. His raging drinking issues were to be expected, and not being his wife or official girlfriend my terrible person traits regularly reminded me that his DUIs and ER wake ups were not my issues. They weren’t but I guess you could argue having me in his life gave Ryan extreme motivation to not achieve anything, I mean a hot woman came to his house to fuck him on a regular basis and all he had to do was…you know be good at what he was good at. I guess when I talk about him like this it sounds like I was using him. Which, maybe I was. But what was he doing? No one that far gone with alcoholism is capable of forming a real attachment, I refuse to buy the one time he, blackout OFC, said he loved me then repeated it when I ignored him. We already acted like we loved each other, and deep down he actually had an issue with my being married. The unspoken truths he ruined on two different blackout occasions, one standing by his dad’s jet ski lift, the other driving home from a bar and grill where he’d thrown up antipasto salad all over their men’s room. I’m sorry he didn’t get better. He must have steadily declined in the six years since I’d last spoken to him.

Read that underlined sentence again. The exact same thing is true of my father. They both drank themselves to death, they both did so after I didn’t speak to them for six years, they both fucking loved Star Trek. Ryan was very into freemasonry (his unfinished chest piece was the pyramid thing) and my dad’s dad was a 33rd degree Mason (we have a sword that proves it, because I guess you get a sword at that level), his wife was an equivalent in Daughters of the Nile, which was the female counterpart because obv the wives needed somewhere to hang as well. Weird what they have in common, isn’t it? Even the living by a lake, though my dad grew up that way, poorly, as many lake community folk actually do, and Ryan only did so after grad school when he had no options but a rent-free room at his father’s.

The difference was that I thought Ryan would get better. You take for granted that someone your age might already be too far gone. I’m really sorry if I somehow contributed. I probably did. I don’t know what more I can do now though.

Since Ryan there was grad school guy, and although I’m not pissed anymore it’s not like that’ll ever be anything. And that was just a horrible instance of being like…why did you spend like a month getting me to like you only to horribly reject me when things got really intense?

Oh that sounds exactly like what happened earlier this year? Yes I think so too. The difference is grad school guy lied and I have no idea what happened with this last one. My last email went unanswered so like fuck that I’ll try reaching out again. If you’re not worth responding to you’re not worth responding to.

I’m wildly impressed if anyone has read this far. Enjoy it while you can, lord knows I’ll get embarrassed and turn it private soon enough.