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When I write my blog, I really try to convey the way I feel about a certain subject.  Me.  As many times as I’ve tried to figure out the “why’s” surrounding certain dilemmas in my life, I try very very hard not to judge another person’s perception of what they believe to be reality, because that will get you into trouble.  Every. Single. Time.

Age makes you wiser, if only about yourself.  Luckily I’ve been able to determine what makes me tick.  The little nuances that make my life my own.  Only I can feel the way “I” feel.  I can be judged on my actions by others, but I know who I am.  I know what makes me happy, sad, angry, etc.

If I ever say that I meant no ill will, I’m not exaggerating.  I get mad like the rest of us, but I make every attempt not to retaliate.  I can say there have only been a couple of times in my life where I felt vindicated by a random act of revenge.  And even my form of revenge is pretty much non-threatening.  It just makes me feel better….

A little over a week ago I got a phone call that I realize has changed so many lives, instantaneously.  The depth of the sadness has yet to be completely seen, and I pray that the intensity of the matter keeps itself relatively contained to allow all in it’s path of mental stability AND instability to grieve however their bodies need to.  There is no cookie-cutter way to grieve,  we all do it in different ways.  I think it has a lot to do with a person’s perception of the events, as well as their perception of their own life.

I’ve had some time to think about the significant departure of a human being that for all intents and purposes created a lot of “life” in this world.   I’ve kind of been on the outside looking in, a quiet spectator of sorts.  I’ve reached out to a few of the people who were closest to this individual and have listened to and read stories about her life.  Her mark in the world.  Now I won’t pretend to completely know this creature who now resides in Heaven with all her glamorous eccentricities.  I had a friendly connection, only being allowed to see a one side of what truly made this girl who she was.  The one constant reminder of her life was that she was  passionate.  One of the most passionate people that I know.  I find a real connection in that, not sure why.  If that girl loved you, she loved you HARD.  In the same token, if she disliked you, you felt her wrath.  What once was considered a transparent personality, many have found that she was not as cut and dry as originally thought.  The nuances surrounding her life were as detailed and closely guarded as one that you might find in an average undercover operation.  She only let you see what she wanted you to see, and each view was different depending on your relationship with her.

Her existence in this world will forever be a complex inquisition for many of her loved ones and close friends.  As much as she was “out there”,  she was also more grounded and in touch with her purpose than possibly anyone will ever know.  We like to put people into a specific class.  It makes us feel better.  Let’s label them, we’ll be able to sleep better at night knowing that we’ve categorized them into a specific file, in a distinct box according to their behavior toward us.  We judge.  We assume that we know what they are going through in their lives, why they acted as they did.  In our minds we have figured out what makes them tick, why their auspicious  future seemed to take a vacation South.  If we try to pinpoint the exact time in which they fell short of our expectations, we can somehow reside to the fact that we can hold no fault in our own actions, it’s “them” not “us”.  I mean, how many times have you just looked at someone and thought to yourself, “glad it’s them and not me”?  Or “wow, who lives their life like that”?  I probably think that way on a daily basis.

On a side note, as I’m typing this, and it’s taken me a few days to do it.   As I start and stop several times, I continue to get an “unresponsive script” error message.  In one of my previous blogs, “Signs”, you will understand that I’m a firm believer in signs, and I’m taking this as just another sign from beyond.  It’s kind of comforting knowing that she’s here with me, joking around and probably laughing her ass off as I try to get through this computer glitch.  Typical of her humor I bet.

I envision this beautiful young girl, long brown hair blowing in the wind, riding off on her wild horse into her new home, making it her own.


Sympathy for Addiction

I have so many ideas for blogs recently, my brain is overflowing with mental observations.  If I can find the time, March should be a good month for me to write.

Today however, I must write about a recent day of mental instability.  Yesterday.  I need to give a little bit of background before I rant.  I’ve been prescribed Cymbalta for pain.  Pain that I’ve had everyday for 13 months.  My pain is all encompassing.  I feel a general sense of achy, flu like symptoms.  My rheumatologist feels that a non narcotic pain pill called Tramadol accompanied by an Ibuprofen is sufficient.  I’m truly not one to continue masking my problems, so off to another doctor I go.  Ms. New Doctor selects a combination of Tramadol and Cymbalta for me. 30mg of Cymbalta, to be exact.  At my second visit to her, I describe feeling about 5% better, where in she increases the dosage to 60mg, in hopes to eventually allow me to be pain free.  At this rate I should be take 5000mg of Cymbalta, but I’m getting ahead of myself.  She increases another pill for acid reflux for me and off I go.  I get my refill and begin taking (2) Cymbalta a day.  I never paid attention until I ran out of pills mid month, and thought I may have made a mistake.  It seems I was supposed to take (1) pill of 60 mg.  I was taking (2).  In essence I went from 30mg to 120mg.  That in itself doesn’t seem too awful bad, right?  Just wise the hell up and go back to your (1) pill of 60mg.

Fast forward to yesterday.  Now to be clear, I did feel a bit odd a few days prior, a lot more achy and some pretty bad stomach pains, but for the most part I never put 2+2 together.  Yesterday morning I woke up to what is called “Brain Zaps”.  I was lucky unlucky enough to have experienced those when I quit Lexapro cold turkey.  A brain zap can occur when there is a decrease or stoppage of SSRI’s, which is an antidepressant medication.  Cymbalta can be used for that, but in my case is being used for general pain.  To describe a brain zap, try to remember a day when you felt an electric shock or quick jolt.  That shock happens to your brain.  Yesterday mine was occurring when I made a sudden turn of my head.  Yep. That often.  It felt like my brain was being hit with a taser.  All. Day. Long.  Just after the jolt, I would feel a quick disorientation and light headedness.   But that wasn’t the only problem.  I was having what appeared to be hot flashes about every 10 minutes.  But not a mild flash, oh no, this was a complete soaking.  My hair stuck to my head from my scalp sweat.  My shirt was sticking to my body.  The back of my knees and inside of my elbows creased with perspiration.  I was literally a hot mess.  And those 10 minute long bursts of fire in my body made me feel like passing out.  That happened all day long as well.

I was at work most of the day and made a quick jaunt to the pharmacy to discuss my dilemma with the pharmacist who looked like she recently graduated from middle school. My doctor hadn’t called back and I was looking for help.  As I became a human waterfall of liquid steam, I waited my turn to speak to someone who could shed some light on my problem.  Miss Pharmacist looked afraid of me.  She looked very afraid.  As I lay my coat on the counter and begin dripping all over the place, she began to appear uneasy.  I was a druggie looking for a fix.  She stared into my eyes, with her hands resting on the counter, gripping the edge in fear.  I’m guessing there was a panic button nearby, her white knuckled hands firm on the perimeter.   Fear covered her face when I started describing my symptoms.  She tried to remain calm but the vibration of her voice spoke volumes.  And for good reason.  I was a fucking mess.  I was shaking, dripping and pleading all over the place.  I wasn’t too proud, silently mouthing “PLEASE HELP ME”, which actually rolled off my tongue with such trepidation that I scared MYSELF.  I felt an overwhelming urgency to cry, which somehow I blocked.  I’m not sure tears could have actually flowed out of my ducts since all of my pores were being used for body fluid excretion.  She could not help me.  Only my doctor can give me advice on what to do in this case.

First of all, I find it incredibly hard to believe that this child like legal drug distributor could not conjure up an idea in her head that would ease my crazy brain and spontaneous fluid flooding.  But what do I expect from an 8th grader?   I mean seriously.

I clumsily collected my coat and vitamins and turned to exit the building, hoping not to slip in the pool of molten water that found it’s place at my feet.  An older gentleman waiting for his prescription appeared to move quickly backward in his chair as I passed, in a seemingly uncomfortable attempt to block a sweat spattering to his face.  I couldn’t even rally up an eye roll as I sped by him, I needed to get the hell outta Dodge.

When I arrived home I so badly wanted to take an Ambien to sleep this horrible feeling away, and then take another when I awoke.  And then another, and so on and so on.  Not wanting to feel this way was the only thing I could think of, which brings me to the reason for my writing today.  I read in quite a few places that this reaction to SSRI’s, as well as pain pills, is not unlike withdrawal from heroin.

Now I cannot imagine and I would hope that I never have to imagine what that withdrawal would be like.  I’ve seen pictures of heroin addicts and it’s not pretty.  But I have to tell you, if my symptoms yesterday were due to a withdrawal from that horrid drug, heroin, I would have sold the shoe laces from my child’s last pair of shoes to get a fix.  I wanted to run from the way that I felt so badly that I would have done almost anything, and that’s not a lie.  I’ve had lots of opportunity to experience pain in my life, and I’ve had quite a bit in the last 4 years, but NOTHING compares to this.  In fact, pain couldn’t touch this experience.  I’d rather have a tooth pulled without novocain than to go through that again.  And that’s the exact reason why I feel so much sympathy for anyone going through a drug withdrawal.  Having the ability and will power NOT to turn to Ambien or any other drug to get me through my situation is something that a lot of addicts don’t have.  And for good reason.  That’s exactly the reason that they ARE addicts.  The amount of compassion that I have for someone trying to kick an addiction is so much more personal and powerful for me today, that I may seriously look into a way that I can help those less fortunate in that capacity.  My request to you is that if you are reading this, that you carefully have a mental discussion with yourself and realize that until we’ve walked a mile in ANYONE’S shoes, we can and SHOULD NOT judge them.  For ANY reason.

This song comes to mind, and not so much for the meaning in its lyrics, but the broader meaning.  “How can we dance when our earth is turning, how can we sleep when our beds are burning….”  How can we sit back and allow drug addiction to be commonplace and judge those afflicted?


Covet

I work in an IT center and although I’m not as technologically savvy as they are, I can hold my own.   A little bit of their desire to play games has rubbed off and although I’m not a game player per say, I have grown fond of a particular phone app called Covet.  In Covet, you dress a model according to the requirements suggested, purchasing clothing and accessories and submitting a final product for other players to vote on and decide if you’ve won the current virtual clothing/accessory item for that particular event.  I guess you could say I’m slightly addicted.  I try to dress my model daily and compete in events when I find a spare couple of minutes.

My interest in the game comes from my love of all things fashion and beauty.  I have a cosmetology background and have worked in salons in the past.  I’m self taught in many of my interests, and I think I have a good eye for fashion and beauty.

Having said that, I’ve been struggling with a kind of minor issue: the style of my co-workers.  Yes, I do judge others when I’m out and away from work, but not to the extent or degree that I do of the very people that I spend many of my waking hours with.  I have trouble understanding how a woman obviously doesn’t “check her look” in the mirror before she leaves the house.  I’m not talking about the occasional garment flubs, like a little too much muffin top or a wardrobe that evidently looked good on paper or on a mannequin but didn’t quite fit the person wearing it.  No, I’m talking about those people, who for the most part hold a position higher than my own, yet seemingly appear to hold no interest at all in actually giving two shits about their appearance.  I’m lucky enough to be surrounded by quite a few women who clearly have no clue how to use a round brush or choose clothing suitable for their body type.  And I rarely see an attempt to try harder.

I’m sure you’re familiar with that person who only looks good the few hours after they come from the salon.  Their hair has design and actually presents itself to look like that of a women who takes pride in her appearance.  If you’re lucky enough to see that every once in a while, it’s a treat.  Your co-worker might have gone shopping for some new duds and come to work with a beautiful and very thought out garment or ensemble choice that makes even the quietest person comment on the look.  “You look very nice today”, a comment seldom said to these fashion blundering ladies, should act as a red flag to these girls.  Especially because it’s rarely if ever heard.  Take that compliment and RUN with it!  Truly.

My question is this:  How can you wake up and throw whatever clothing that’s clean onto your body and drive into work, surrounded by other individuals who clearly care about their display of fashion and not give a damn about your own representation?   Are you “one of those” women that think that you should be judged on your brain power and sense of self more than how others perceive you?  Can I just tell you that that’s total BULLSHIT?  Whether you like it or not, you will be judged.  It’s a fact of life, and the more you deny it the more it will bury itself in the visual minds of people who see you.  We’ll be severely scarred for life!  Ok, that’s a little extreme, but I have had nightmares of fashion gone wrong.  Crazy, misguided females chasing me down an alley with their too tight stretch tops and baggy ass jeans.  It wasn’t pretty.

Let’s not forget the girls on the beach.  I may be throwing my own insecurities about my body into the mix, but I have to wonder who thinks it’s a good idea to wear a ill-fitting bikini on a body larger than a size 20.  I’m pulling the size out of nowhere and there are probably many girls who do a good job of dressing their larger bodies in bikinis, but I’ve seen one too many girls showing off too much skin, and some who look like they aren’t wearing bottoms.  I’m not gonna rule out a great fitting bikini that has more fabric than not.  There is a way to look good at any size.  I’m a firm believer in that.  I’m not a physically fit, toned woman.  I’ve got rolls and larger than they should be body parts, I’m not gonna lie.  I try to compliment my good parts rather than flaunt the bad ones.

But I guess that’s just me.  I’m considerate of other folks eyes, or at least I  honestly try to be.

As I sit here typing, I’ve checked my “look” in the mirror before I left my house.  A few times.  Hair – check.  Makeup – check.  No protruding body parts taking center stage – check.  

There are so many ways we can piss people off.  Why does our lack of fashion sense need to be yet another one on an already long list?

I hear Target’s having a sale on mirrors….in case you might be in the market for buying one, finally.