Cognitive Skills Severely Impaired

Damn it I just want to sleep. I would give my right arm right now for REAL uninterrupted, healthy sleep.

I have had sleep issues for about as long as I can remember now. Between unrestful and odd sleeping patterns, to straight up insomnia I dread nights. I also hope every night that this is he night that will be different. It never is. I’m always tossing and turning, aware of every ache and pain in my body, never in a comfortable position to relax, and waking up on average every hour on the dot. Green Day’s Insomnia plays in my head pretty much constantly. My brain doesn’t work right, I can’t carry a conversation half the time and I have not driven my car in over three weeks because I’m just not fit to.

Yes I’ve tried Advil pm, melatonin, tea, klonopin, Ativan, ALL my night meds have drowsy side effects, and had a sleep study done. No sleep apnea, but I do have restless leg syndrome. Basically I’ve been told to keep trying things I’m already doing, let my body sleep when it’s ready and adjust to its schedule. Right now I get my best sleep between 7 and noon. Pretty fucking convenient right? And double that with the Chronic fatigue and I have been living one huge party life lately of feeling pretty much like death. So for all those I’ve been neglecting, I’m so sorry. I’m just trying to get it together here.

My darling husband on the other hand, will sleep anywhere:

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(Wo)Man In the Mirror

I have a confession. On this lovely blog here, I have been pretty open about some things. In my other social media sites though, not so much. I have a really bad habit of molding myself into this compliant person that doesn’t want to lose friends or family in the internets simply because I have opinions or thoughts of my own. Yet I sit here every single day and be accosted by the opinions of everyone else I chose to be online connected with, without a word most of the time. It feels unfair. So let’s set the record straight shall we?

I’m a bleeding heart liberal. I believe in gay marriage (gasp) and that the LBGTQ community deserves EVERYTHING everyone else is entitled to. It is NOT a lifestyle choice, and it’s not against nature to love whoever you chose to love. And no, it’s not going to divulge into pedophilia or bestiality. These are ridiculous arguments, for neither party can give consent, quit being dumb and bringing them up. Also, the Christian church does not hold the patent on marriage, people were getting married 1000’s of years before Christianity was even a twinkle of an idea.

I believe in this country helping the downtrodden and those in need, and everyone lending a helping hand for those who are willing to try to rise out of their own situations and make themselves a better life. I believe there are men and women that serve this country under good intentions, and while their orders my not always be what we agree with its our responsibility to recognize they are not to blame for doing a job none of us will willing to sign up for. I want better healthcare for our nation. I’m sick of the disabled being cast aside, and the less fortunate being buried under medical bills no normal person could afford. I’m tired of having my uterus legislated. If Obamacare is what we have right now to ease some of that, I intend to give it a chance.

And now religion. I’m an atheist. For those who need a clear definition of that, it means I reject the idea that a god of any sort exists. It’s not a religion, there is no dogma and I’m not some scary person that eats babies in my spare time. I recognize evolution as fact and I rely on science and logic and reason to expand the knowledge I have, not a book that cannot be proven to be real, but ultimately taken on faith alone. I do not feel like organized religion is very healthy, nor do I agree with it’s practice as a whole. I understand that this is my opinion, and there it is, and I’m always willing to talk, but never there to “preach” or “convert.”

These are things I don’t discuss a lot except with a few close friends. But that is about change. If I support these things, I should walk the walk after all shouldn’t I?

Dear Fatigue. You suck.

Today I dedicate this post to fatigue. I’ve been entirely too fatigued to post a lot lately. And I use the word fatigued because it’s different than tired. It’s more extreme and when it washes over you it feels different, it presents different, and for me at least it can make me want to pass out right where I stand.

Every few weeks my body switches it’s cycle when it hits. Sometimes it’s once a day, sometimes it’s twice or more times a day. Right now we are at twice or more a day. Which is really inconvenient because it means I have about 2 hours to be productive between spells or I have to push through and hope someone is there to help me though it because it could be dangerous with how foggy my mind becomes, someone to drive me around, make sure I have chairs to sit in, talk me into consciousness the whole time….

I’m also on a whacked out sleep schedule where I go to bed early and wake up several times a night. As of this moment, I’m banging this little whine fest out at 4am because I’m awake and angry about it, and having a moment of exasperation.

Also, winter, and dry heat inside my house can go right to hell too. I’m thankful for heat, don’t get me wrong, but it’s tearing up my nose and sinuses like crazy and anyone living in a dry heat environment knows how awful that can get. I’m there, the worst scenario.

And now I shall take my leave, for the cats are obviously fighting out whose turn it is to watch over mom at the moment, on the bed and need a intervention.

Letters From Quarantine

It’s been 5 days since the quarantine at House Woodland began. We arrived home on Sunday with Ken feeling pretty bad, sore throat and congestion. After a terrible sleepless night, for me, due to his snoring and angry retorts when I tried to move him he was full on sick the next day. We managed to attend a doctor’s appointment and head to the grocery store for what would be the last time in the near future.

Day 2, Ken had moved to the couch so I could get some rest, but it didn’t matter. Whatever this was, I succumbed to it anyway. Sore throat, nose at a full stop, and chest congestion out of nowhere. Migraine city had come for a visit too. I am glad now I withheld my Enbrel this week because that would have only suppressed my immune system more and this hell would have gone on a lot longer.

There was soup to be slurped and Netflix to be watched, and dual moaning was heard across the Woodland abode.

However in an effort to brighten our spirits we did make one kick ass french cut crusted rack of lamb for New Years dinner, that was hands down the best thing I have eaten all year. Being sick wasn’t going to suck ALL the joy out of New Years even if we did pass out by 10 and there was no toasting or kissing.

Stir crazy began to set in the next day and between coffee, naps and TV we proceeded to make one hell of a dent at purging the junk on our downstairs floor for our upcoming move. I’m more than proud of us, and doing it while sick? We are beasts. We are now slowly working on aspects of the second floor believe it or not.

Like previously stated, it’s now day 5. Symptoms have improved on both of us, but we are not ready to be released back into the world just yet. We gaze out the window longingly but the harsh freezing temperatures of the outside air would harm us should we venture out I’m sure. I hope we survive this. I’m writing to document our last days should we turn on each other and fail to successfully co inhabit this domicile any longer.

Peace out.

Driving Ms Eileen. Crazy.

I had the greatest snippet with my ultra conservative Fox News loving, Ann Coulter reading, Sarah Palin worshipping Great Aunt the other day. Sometimes I forget what music I have on XM in the car……

Car ( playing ” Back That Ass up” )

Eileen: “OH MY GOD. WHAT IS THIS?”

Me: (snickering) “Sorry about that, forgot to change the channel.”

Eileen: “WELL. That’s certainly not very CHRISTIAN music now is it.?”

Me: “I never claimed to be a Christian. I’m an Atheist.”

Eileen sucked in her breath SO hard I thought it was going to suck the car and all of us right into a black hole. Meanwhile my grandmother erupted in laughter in the backseat and later told me it was the funniest thing she had heard anyone say to Eileen in a LONG time.

Speaking of my godlessness, my dad specifically wrote in his card to me that he hopes God will step up and show me that “I Am Here” so that I believe once again. Uhhhh. I appreciated the rest of the sentiment, why did he have to go and throw that awkwardness in there? Religious fundamentalists just cannot help themselves can they??

If This Were a CD, My Thoughts Would be Songs

I bought this nifty keyboard case for my iPad so it would help me you know….write easier. Guess what I haven’t been doing? A whole lot of writing, I can tell you that. LLLIIIIIFFFFEEEE. I’m living it, I want to share it but I’m just too damn tired to be bothered sometimes to be honest. SO, here’s a post of non sequitur thoughts that have some to maybe no relevance to my life but are in my head.

My brother turned 20 and that’s neat. He is the youngest and he is getting all “growed up.” I also just had a semi frustrating dream about him last night in which I was SUPER pissed off because he was being a jerk and refusing to do the dishes right.

Ken, the CATS, and myself are all bumming it at grandma’s this week. Yes, the cats too! It was a family road trip to DC this year. “Over the river and through the woods to grandmothers house we go!” The cats were less than pleased with the car ride but they are treating this place like one huge cat resort where love is dispensed at every turn and treats reign down from the sky. I think they are going to be ok.

Every time I merge onto the Beltway this week I end up regretting it. Obscenities are screamed, road rage is had. DC, baby, I’m home for Christmas.

Danica Mckellar, “Winnie” from the Wonder Years, was on TV talking about doing a lesbian make out scene and I felt REALLY old.

I’m going to have all sorts of fun in a few weeks with electrodes and a bed. Nope, its not some sort of 50 Shades of Grey thing, sorry you got excited. It’s a sleep study to be evaluated for sleep apnea and restless leg syndrome, one of which I can pretty much already tell them I have. I mean, out of control twitching? KINDA HARD TO MISS. I did not even bring this up with the sleep doctor, he picked up on it from my intake paperwork which was nice. I did not have to go in there sounding like a hypochondriac, my medication list I gave him was already mind blowing enough.

Speaking of, my SSDI case is moving forward. Ken and I both received extensive quality of life sort of packets to fill out regarding my daily pain and activities, blah blah. We have 20 days to complete it. Fingers crossed.

Neighborhood Woes

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I am not happy with the state of affairs of our neighborhood at the moment. In a much longer story I’d rather not get into, we have battled a horrid mold issue in our house where the moisture was so bad our walls were actually crying, like the Virgin Mary, and I’ve fought tooth and nail for handicapped accessible parking. I’ve had my car wrongly towed, explosively fought with a burly tow truck owner, called the cops on my neighbors out of sheer concern and tried to survive other renters nuances that naturally come from this sort of set up. Oh AND THE DEAD BODY. Then the renovations started.

I feel like this notice we got for “we are renovating the inside of the house next door” was CLEARLY understated considering the state of the construction site of the 6 houses around me outside and the lack of walkways around my house. We were told they would be “updating the inside of the next door unit (something they should be doing to ours considering they refuse to address our mold)” and it would take several weeks. Sorry for the noise. Since then, this has turned into two houses being renovated on each side, and two entire rows, mine and the row facing me getting new facelifts on the OUTSIDE of their houses. The whole cosmetic nine yards. We have jackhammers, sledgehammers, backhoes, trucks, 20 guys tons of supplies and all this lovely pounding starts at 6 am every day and goes until about 8 at night. They park diagonally all over our parking spaces, in the handicapped space, fire lane, sidewalks, wherever and it’s a minefield to get to my house. Has the rental office warned us about this? Not a peep. We were just told we were no longer allowed to park in our space right now, by the contractors, because they were jackhammering up the walkways and didn’t want to hit my car. We have heard a rumor that our house was next to get the outside facelift and they would be ripping out our door frame and we would lose access to our front entrance for possibly a couple weeks and be forced to use the back door. Which for able bodied people might be a fun adventure, climbing into a ravine (where the dead body was found) and up a hill to get to the back gate that gives us access to my back door. But me, with the arthritis? Not looking forward to it at all.

The best part about all this is they are doing it after letting a whole bunch of residents out of their leases for issues with MOLD and problems so they have empty units on my row. And here we have been complaining for a year and they could have just made it easier on everyone and just moved us as well and knocked out the whole row of units….but no, no, that would make sense and we get to sit this out.

Now, our lease will be up in the spring and we are looking to move closer to wherever Ken starts working and OUT of this property so it’s kind of pointless to move, with all that entails but this rant REALLY needed to come out as I’m now watching a cement truck pull itself up onto the lawn outside my house. Sorry for the minor inconvenience my ass.

Inkblots and Imaginary Friends.

Lately I have hit this level of exhaustion that has rendered me just too exhausted to write. It’s not that things haven’t been going on, because man have they ever, but just living through them have been enough at the moment. Writing about them, that’s just had to wait. Until the Klonopin wore off and I had my mind back that is. Klonopin is one of those great drugs that calms you down but also kind of renders your brain useless to cognitive thought, so writing is damn near impossible.

Did you know that psychologists still use those inkblot tests for things? I had NO IDEA either until confronted with my very own set last week. Now THAT was fun. Apparently I just see the inside of the human anatomy in everything, and I think she was surprised at my graphic detail on that. And I saw the bat signal on one. But really there was a point where I looked at her and exclaimed “COME ON! A two year old just splattered paint on that,” and refused to “see” anything else. Apparently that wasn’t an acceptable answer and finally I told her “fine, it’s a body.” From the best of my Internet research when I got home, while my answers aren’t standard, I got the conceptual idea of the inkblot cards right, and it safe to say I’m not schizophrenic. That was on the table?! Schizophrenia?! (One little breakdown and they think you might be full blown schizophrenic, that I will never understand. I was never climbing the walls, talking to imaginary people, threatening to hurt ANYBODY or the like.) I’m going to be skeptical of the whole inkblot method though anyway, it’s too much guesswork and not enough proven accuracy for me. Luckily the rest of my visit was more in depth and focused on better diagnostic methods concerning my issues.

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I’m convinced this one is Optimus Prime.

The summary of our week beyond that consisted of some high stakes finances. It’s like poker, only with our utilities, cable, and rent up as collateral, and we are playing with groceries. Ken’s car unexpectedly died and won a all expenses paid trip courtesy of our checking account to our house from the middle of the road. Now we have one car for the rest of the month. So there’s that to be excited about. Negotiations for obtaining my medication for my Rheumatoid Arthitis are tense and frustrating as its being held hostage somewhere between my doctor’s office and the mail order pharmacy. No one really knows, they both say someone else is fucking up. I’d also like to throw in here, that no one seems to give two flying fucks what i have to say about it because they have pushed this process through every step of the way despite my concerns, and every step of the way it’s ended up a problem for ME. Either way, I’m in terrible pain and no one is sending in back up. Stay tuned. It’s a developing situation.

My Eyes Feel Like They’re Gonna Bleed….

Greenday’s Brainstew. Yes. This is my theme song for months.

I’ve been highly sleep disturbed for the past few weeks. Way more than normal. I really feel pushed to the edge here about this. I’m extremely grateful on the one hand to have solved “the mystery of the batshit insane migraines with vertigo” but it’s not like the hits haven’t kept coming.

I’ve had the equivalent of a nervous breakdown. I ended up seeking to be admitted somewhere for psychiatric help because I had no choice and I was totally freaked out and Ken and I knew it wasn’t normal. Like on a rating of 1 to INSANE I’m probably about a 8.8. You know me, down and dirty with the details here. I was pretty much the meal short of a picnic lunch, I could feel it and I wanted help. That’s a desperate feeling when you are considering giving up your shoelaces voluntarily just to get someone to listen to you because everywhere normal has a waitlist. (This is also not the first time I’ve sought immediate help, but its been a number of years, and the worst, and I thought I had managed pretty well on and off through talk therapy and sometimes some anxiety meds. I’ve also had a shitty time with a past diagnosis/doctor which has made some stuff hard in the trust department.) We have gotten some GOOD help this time after a bumpy start, if you didn’t know, obtaining mental health services can be a lengthy process, I’ve had to get creative and even wait for treatment! I’m finally getting the most comprehensive diagnostic evaluation I’ve ever gotten for Bi Polar disorder after meeting with a professional who has determined it was well worth the time and expense to see me for the evaluation and get it all official and shit for my medical history. I’ll be set up with talk therapy to learn how to understand this and medication management to work out a plan as well. All this is good stuff but as you can imagine, a lot to process. I’m on a mood stabilizer and a antidepressant right now to take the edge off with my anxiety meds but its clear by my sleep issues we haven’t gotten this right yet although I’m starting to feel better and there is a lot less crying and rage going on. And I’m writing about it in specifics. Openly. This is huge.

Going back to the Rheumatoid Arthritis for a moment. I’m in a huge flare since stopping the methotrexate because of the Migraine Mystery, and its finally been decided I will try a biologic medication for treatment. However, getting it all approved and between that and fibromyalgia, I’m feeling pretty shitty with pain, so sleep is also a bitch when you are waking up due to that lovely swelling and burning in your joints or just overall uncontrolled aches.

I realize this post is 100% venting, but its my blog and I’ll cry if I want to. Also, I’ll make as many musical references if I want to. I dare you to stop me. I’m delirious.

Starting a Salt Lick

Yesterday a friend sent me a photo of her latest salt purchase, which happened to be pink Himalayan sea salt and I cracked up. The reason being is we have the craziest variety of salts…and yes pink Himalayan, i think more than one container. For some reason people think we love gourmet cooking salts and give them to us as gifts. Which we actually do but now we have like this overload of salt and we actually DON’T cook with salt in general all that much (my go to is Celtic sea salt if you must know, a little goes a long way, and its got a good mineral content.)

This situation has just gotten entirely out of control and its really funny. Ken and I have what we refer to as “the salt shelf.” Somehow, because we enjoy cooking our family has read into this as “Those people cook! They must NEED FANCY SALT!” Last year my uncle gave us the ULTIMATE SALT COLLECTION. It was three jars of different salts (Red Alaea Hawaiian, Pink Himalayan, Australian Murray River) and they each came with three little spoons. They reside on the salt shelf. My parents gave us two salt blends that are actually a staples now that were blended with other herbs. Another friend directed us to a website filled with nothing but gourmet salts which I’ll admit was fascinating yet hilarious all at the same time. All this was pretty much in the same month. I wonder if my family just assumes my cholesterol is shot to hell and we eat lard by the bucket with our meals too. We have table salt, pretzel salt, sea salt, grey salt, garlic salt, sad salt, happy salt, drunk salt, now I’m just making shit up salt, but you get the picture. It’s almost as ridiculous as walking into one of those Asian grocery stores where they have big bags of MSG on the shelves. And I stress, WE OWN IT, WE DONT USE IT IN THOSE PROPORTIONS, this crazy salt. Don’t get all worried about my health you health nuts.

I’m pretty sure we actually have Epsom’s salt under the bathroom sink too now that I think about it, like a gallon of the stuff. NOO! Now my nightmares are going to consist of me being inflated with my cooking salts and bath salts and smelling salts, all because of the one picture I now have on my phone reminding me of the salt shelf in my kitchen. DEAR FRIEND, YOU KNOW WHO YOU ARE, AND I KNOW WHERE YOU LIVE.

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14 salts on the Salt Shelf: Salts not pictured: Epsom’s Salt. He was too busy being a asshole recluse under the sink and I wasn’t going to fight his ass for this classroom photo.

P.S. We apparently don’t have any black salt. Consider that a open invitation I guess.