Category Archives: Uncategorized

What you should know about chronic pain

This article has been circulating in the internet world of chronically ill people, and while I think it’s a nice letter, it kind of bugs me. A lot of it is very true, I guess I just sort of feel like that’s not really what I would want people to know about living in chronic pain.

I guess first I’ll take this list and comment on it, then I’ll add my own things.

TIPS FOR DEALING WITH PEOPLE IN PAIN

1. People with chronic pain seem unreliable (we can’t count on ourselves). When feeling better we promise things (and mean it); when in serious pain, we may not even show up.

2. An action or situation may result in pain several hours later, or even the next day. Delayed pain is confusing to people who have never experienced it.

3. Pain can inhibit listening and other communication skills. It’s like having someone shouting at you, or trying to talk with a fire alarm going off in the room. The effect of pain on the mind can seem like attention deficit disorder. So you may have to repeat a request, or write things down for a person with chronic pain. Don’t take it personally, or think that they are stupid. – Super true for me, and I didn’t really think about it until I read this letter. I generally can’t look people in the eye when they’re talking, not because I don’t want to, but because it’s way too much stimulation to look, listen, think, AND feel the pain. 

4. The senses can overload while in pain. For example, noises that wouldn’t normally bother you, seem too much. – Yep, exactly what I was talking about.

5. Patience may seem short. We can’t wait in a long line; can’t wait for a long drawn out conversation.

6. Don’t always ask “how are you” unless you are genuinely prepared to listen it just points attention inward. – YES. I, as a general rule, don’t lie…if you ask “how are you?” you’re going to get a real answer, how long it is depends on who you are and whether I think you actually care. If I don’t think you care (or I don’t have the energy for a real answer) you’ll get something like “I’m managing” or “just the usual”. 

7. Pain can sometimes trigger psychological disabilities (usually very temporary). When in pain, a small task, like hanging out the laundry, can seem like a huge wall, too high to climb over. An hour later the same job may be quite OK. It is sane to be depressed occasionally when you hurt.

8. Pain can come on fairly quickly and unexpectedly. Pain sometimes abates after a short rest. Chronic pain people appear to arrive and fade unpredictably to others.

9. Knowing where a refuge is, such as a couch, a bed, or comfortable chair, is as important as knowing where a bathroom is. A visit is much more enjoyable if the chronic pain person knows there is a refuge if needed. A person with chronic pain may not want to go anywhere that has no refuge (e.g.no place to sit or lie down).

10. Small acts of kindness can seem like huge acts of mercy to a person in pain. Your offer of a pillow or a cup of tea can be a really big thing to a person who is feeling temporarily helpless in the face of encroaching pain. – The biggest thing anyone can do for me when I’m in pain is to just be with me…I hate to be alone, I get very emotional when the pain is very bad. I need distractions and to know someone who cares is there. 

11. Not all pain is easy to locate or describe. Sometimes there is a body-wide feeling of discomfort, with hard to describe pains in the entire back, or in both legs, but not in one particular spot you can point to. Our vocabulary for pain is very limited, compared to the body’s ability to feel varieties of discomfort. – This is always a big problem for me, my worst pain is a very vague, almost impossible to describe pain that just radiates through my whole body. It frustrates me to try to describe it, and the best I’ve been able to come up with is “every individual cell in my body is screaming in agony”. I always get strange looks from people when I say that though, and I know no one understands what I mean…which just frustrates me more. 

12. We may not have a good “reason” for the pain. Medical science is still limited in its understanding of pain. Many people have pain that is not yet classified by doctors as an officially recognized “disease”. That does not reduce the pain, – it only reduces our ability to give it a label, and to have you believe us.


 

1) The biggest, most important thing I want people to know about what it’s like to live with chronic pain is that it never goes away. Think about that, every single second, of every single day, of your entire life. Sure sometimes it’s worse than others, but it’s always there…just because I’m acting fine and normal, does not mean I’m not in pain. Most of the healthy people I know lose their minds when they have a toothache, a sprained ankle, a headache, or the flu…imagine all of those things, at the same time, plus more, every single day. Now you have a teeny taste of my life.

Think of a time that you injured yourself, (like a sprained ankle or something) some doctor somewhere probably asked you to “rate your pain on a scale of 1-10, with 1 being no pain and 10 being the worst pain you can imagine”, right? I really, really hate that question, and I get asked it ALL the time. I have a friend who used to play a game with me, every time she saw me she would try to guess what number my pain was at…she was generally right too, partly because she’s awesome, and partly because my number is pretty much always between 5 and 8.5. For 2 reasons, first of all, days under 5 almost never happen. Second, I never rate anything a 10, ever. In the movie The Fault In Our Stars, the girl says “I was saving my 10”, and that’s exactly what I’m doing. People with chronic pain will understand this, but it can always get worse. I never rate anything a 10, because I understand the fact that there will always be something worse than the worst pain I can imagine. I only rate things a 9 that send me to the hospital; I’ve only had a handful of 9s in my life. So basically 8.5 is the worst possible normal day I could have, and I have quite a few of those.

I really wish I could make you understand; I would never wish this on anyone, but sometimes I wish people could just spend a day in my body, because then they would understand what this pain is like. It’s brain-numbing; when it’s really bad I can’t think about anything else, I can’t do anything else except lay still and be in pain. Breathing is too much work, talking is too much work, thinking is too much work. I can’t eat, I can’t sleep, I can’t cry. Just existing is too painful. That’s an 8.5…maybe even a 9. It strips away who you are; I really think it strips away pieces of your soul.

It’s frustrating, I want to be able to do normal-person things…such a stupid little thing like walking to the mailbox, standing long enough to put my make up on (5 minutes), or sitting through a meal will cause me to go from a 5 to an 8.

2) The other huge thing I want people to understand is that I am ok. I know I make all of this sound like the worst thing that could possibly happen to someone…and I’m not gonna lie, it’s pretty terrible, but I do not hate my life. Actually, given the choice I don’t think I would change it…as crazy as that sounds. I’m not angry, I’m not bitter or hateful. I don’t need to turn to religion to find an explanation for my suffering, and I don’t need to make myself feel better with platitudes like “we are given only what we can handle” or “everything happens for a reason”. While these and others may be true, I don’t need to use them to make the fact that I am sick ok. However, I am human, I have my bad days too; occasionally I get sad, mostly about the things I wish I was able to do, and I sometimes get frustrated or pissed off. When that happens I just need a friend, I need to whine and complain about how much it all sucks. As a general rule though, I’m fine.

3) Relax! I won’t break. I don’t need you to do everything for me. I’m not going to get offended if you say whatever it is you think will upset me. As a general rule, I don’t need anything from you, other than for you to act normally and be my friend.

I meet a lot of people who are amazed at what I deal with every day, who don’t understand how I have such a positive attitude and accept the way my life is so well. I have no answer for those questions, other than I don’t know any different…I don’t remember what it feels like to not have pain, so I think that makes it easier, but it’s also just the way I am.

 

 

http://lifeinpain.org/node/2151

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Filed under Chronic Illness, Uncategorized

“I love you present tense” – The Fault in Our Stars

“I’m thinking ‘bout the way people fall in love in mysterious ways, maybe just the touch of a hand, me I fall in love with you every single day, and I just wanna tell you I am…” – Thinking Out Loud, Ed Sheeran

I am currently obsessed with this song, which is surprising given it’s romantic nature, something I haven’t been able to tolerate much of since my separation from my husband.

Like the song says, I have been thinking a lot lately (surprise surprise) about love, and feelings in general; why we have them, what dictates who we have them for, and how society views our feelings.

Chances are most of us have had one of those moments, you know the ones, where someone makes your heart flutter and your head feel faint. Most of us have had someone we just couldn’t stop thinking about, that we wanted to talk to all the time and spend every waking second with. Some people term it “puppy love”, although I’m not entirely sure what that means.

What is it that decides who we fall in “puppy love” with? Of course there are the usual stories, the cute guy from your English class, or that really sweet guy you met on that online dating site…but what about the stories that break the mold? The married man you can’t stop thinking about, or maybe you’re happily married and can’t stop thinking about someone other than your spouse; that person you can’t explain why you feel differently about than the rest of your friends, even though you have never considered yourself gay before; the infamous unrequited love story; or an abuser who only hurts you. What is it that sends our hearts into these painful situations? We usually know so well that we should not fall for these people, but it doesn’t matter.

Why?

According to society as whole, these scenarios are ones where we should not have feelings…yet it happens anyway. It’s out of our control. We can tell the feelings to go away, although I don’t know about you but personally that doesn’t usually do much good.

Married people are “off limits”, we use derogatory terms for people who fall for married people such as “the other woman” or “mistress”; and vice versa, married people are supposed to be faithful, and those who admit to having feelings for someone other than their spouse are termed “cheaters”, “scum bags” and any number of other names people (usually women) have made up. People who admit to having feelings for their heterosexual friends are often made fun of, and it’s not uncommon for the friendship to fall apart because of it. We all know the tragedy of the unrequited love story, at least these people are not usually made fun of, instead they are pitied…which I’m not sure is any better. People who stay in abusive relationships are often blamed, said to be at fault for the abuse since they choose to stay in the relationship.

We all know this stuff, I’m not telling you anything new or shocking…so why do we continue to find ourselves in these situations? I have personally found myself in every scenario I mentioned above, not because I was oblivious to the impossibility and almost certain heartbreak of the situations, but because my heart didn’t care.

Why is that? Why don’t our hearts care that situations like these will almost certainly break us? Even better question, why do we as a society look at people who find themselves in these situations in such a negative light? We know we’ve pretty much all been there at least once…yet still the stigmas exist.

Some say that these people are just desperate for love; that they’re lonely and sad. Others look to old adages like “the grass is always greener on the other side of the fence” and “we always want what we can’t have” to explain away situations like these. While I agree that sometimes these are accurate, I assert that this is not always the case. There have been times where they were definitely not true for me, personally.

So I’ll ask again, why?

A quick Google search for “what decides who we are attracted to?” yields 48,200,000 hits on topics ranging from “Your brain on speed dating” to articles listing “5 Insignificant things that determine who you have sex with”. Apparently I am not the only one wondering about this topic. The list of insignificant things includes things like the tilt of your head, the length of your ring finger and the number of scars on your face as factors in who we are attracted to. (…if you say so…) While the article “Your brain on speed dating” utilizes fMRI imaging techniques to look at what areas of the brain are most active when a person is viewing a potential date. Based on this information they claim that there is a section of our brain that forms a, rather shallow, first impression of the person followed by a second area that evaluates the persons compatibility with ourselves. Alright…that’s an interesting tidbit of information, but neither of those really answers my question.

So here are my thoughts on the matter…

We all need to love and be loved; it has been scientifically proven that without love we will die (for real, not being dramatic).

I think something in our soul recognizes something in someone else’s soul that draws us to that person…sometimes it’s temporary, sometimes it’s lifelong. Either way, it’s beautiful and wonderful, even if it ends up hurting, because our soul needed to encounter that person’s soul. I think often(but not always) there is something for us to learn from these situations, and our souls generally tend to keep us there until we’ve learned it; or sometimes there is something we are supposed to teach the other person. Although other times there is no rhyme or reason to it, it just happens. It’s like our souls have magnets, and sometimes we encounter someone who’s soul has an opposite magnet and we are automatically drawn together by that magnetic force. Sometimes our magnets stick together for a long time, and other times they simply touch and bounce off of each other again. Sometimes they never touch at all, but simply come close to each other and then move away.   

If you look at it as I do, there are no mistakes when it comes to love as long as you follow your soul’s pull. Maybe this is a cop out, maybe it’s me justifying the “mistakes” I’ve made (and if you look at them as mistakes, there are a lot of them); maybe it’s me trying to soothe the heartbreak of my recent divorce by telling myself that I did not make a mistake in marrying him in the first place…but I don’t think so.

I’ve loved hard and deeply, I’ve trusted my soul (for the most part), I’ve been true to myself and honest even when it hurt…and I’ve hurt a lot; I’ve shattered into a million pieces, and then put myself back together. In the end, though, I’ve followed my soul…I haven’t let society’s opinions of who I should and shouldn’t love stop me from loving anyway. I’m proud of that.

Love is incredible, it’s magical and wonderful and mysterious; it’s hard and scary and painful too. It doesn’t make sense, at all, and that’s part of the beauty of it.

I have come to the realization that, as painful as it is, our hearts feel what they feel and there isn’t really a whole lot we can do about it. I started this post wishing that I could know why my heart betrays me like this, but I’m ending it with the sense that understanding that would take away the magic that is love…and goodness knows I do not want that.

Articles referenced in this post:

http://www.cnn.com/2009/LIVING/personal/04/13/o.laws.of.sex.attraction/index.html?_s=PM:LIVING

http://www.cracked.com/article_19663_5-insignificant-things-that-determine-who-you-have-sex-with.html

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-2229190/Study-reveals-parts-decide-romantically-attracted-to.html

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Filed under Divorce, Uncategorized

My poor “broken” heart

It’s been a rough couple of weeks, I haven’t felt up to writing about it but I think I’ll try now.

In my post Salt, Socks and Heartbeats  I told you all about the heart conditions I had been diagnosed with, and that I would need to have a pacemaker placed. Well fast forward a couple of months, pacemaker is in and working fine, but here I am writing yet another post about my “broken” heart.

I was in the emergency room twice last week, both for heart issues. The first time was kind of crazy, I laughed about it because it was like straight out of the movies. My heart rate was very high so I drove myself to the ER and walked in, told the woman at the desk that something was wrong with my heart and was immediately plopped in a wheelchair, rushed to a bed, hooked up to an EKG machine….the next thing I knew there was a doctor and 5 nurses running into the room. The doctor stopped short, took one look at me talking to the tech and said “you’re STABLE?!”…”uh, last time I checked?”…

So they rushed me to a private room, and started hooking me up to all kinds of monitors. They had called a “code” like on tv, because every nurse in the ER was in my room running around like I was dying! They hooked me up to the crash cart! (That thing that they use on tv that they yell “clear!” and it shocks you).

Long story short, they had to give me adenosine, a medication that temporarily causes ventricular asystole (an episode of no cardiac activity) and is used to reset the heart and pull it out of dangerous arrhythmias. In normal person words, they stopped my heart temporarily and lucky for me when it restarted it decided to behave itself and beat like it’s supposed to.

A check of my pacemaker showed that my heart rate had been an average of 223, with a maximum of 273, for an hour. That is NOT good for your heart.

The ER doctor was very nice, and did not make me spend the night in the hospital on the condition that I see my cardiologist the next day. At my appointment my cardiologist said that I was not on nearly enough beta blocker (medication to lower your blood pressure, but also lowers heart rate and can help prevent arrhythmias), so he doubled my dose.

Fast forward 24 hours and I’m back in the ER. This time it was an average of 242, with a maximum of 273, for half an hour. My poor poor little heart. :[

Again, back to my cardiologist I go…this time I insist that the beta blocker (obviously!) isn’t working so we switch to another one, that is a much higher dose and I take it twice a day instead of just once.

The good news is I have managed to make it 6 nights so far without a trip to the ER (isn’t sad that I’m counting?).

The bad news is my heart is still acting up…it’s doing some sort of strange arrhythmia thing as I write this, which isn’t ER worthy, but doesn’t feel good. My poor cat is sleeping on my chest and keeps jumping because she feels my heart do something strange.

My gut feeling is generally right…and it says I am headed for at least one more surgery, maybe more. That’s a lovely thought. And no, I’m not being dramatic, depressed, or whatever other way you want to minimize what I’m feeling. I’m a realist, and I’ve been sick long enough to know my body and when something is really really wrong; and this is bad. 

I hate this. I hate that every time my heart does something weird (which is ALL the time) I panic, “are we running to the ER again?” “is it going to stop?” “what if this time something really bad happens?”.

Tonight I am sad that I feel like any minute now my body will turn on me again.

I’m angry that I underwent a (really terrible) surgery that was supposed to fix things, and it didn’t. Now I may be looking at another (probably terrible) surgery that may or may not actually fix it this time.  I’m angry that my primary care doctor basically “called” this 2 weeks after my pacemaker surgery, when she questioned the cardiologist’s decision on which device to give me…if she was right all along I am going to be furious.

I’m overwhelmed with all that needs to be done now, I am going to get a second opinion from a different kind of doctor who specializes in electrical disorders of the heart (probably where I should have been going all along), but that means tons of paperwork, going over my entire medical history, and the stress of wondering whether or not he will freak out over my lyme diagnosis and antibiotic list.

I’m scared that it could happen again at any moment. I’m scared that I know that having heart rates that high is damaging to your heart, so what kind of damage has already been done? And how much more damage has to be done before we can figure this out and stop it?

This sucks.

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Leibster award

liebster-award

I was nominated for the Liebster award by Rachel at http://collegeoncrutches.wordpress.com/ (for some stupid reason it won’t let me do the nice links 😦 If anyone wants to help me figure that out, feel free please!). She is such a sweetheart for nominating me, I’m so honored that she likes my blog! If you haven’t already, go check her blog out! It’s raw, real and awesome! It’s one of my all time favorites 😉

 

Instructions for presenting a Liebster Nomination:

-Thank the blogger who nominated you.
-Post the Liebster Award image on the acceptance post and/or as a widget.
-Share any 11 facts/things about yourself.
-Answer the 11 questions given.
-Nominate other bloggers
-Compile 11 questions for your nominees.
-Let your Nominees know by commenting on their blogs.

 

11 facts about me:

1. I sleep so hard that I’m borderline comatose
2. I love some weird food combinations (fried egg on peanut butter, raisins in cottage cheese, skittles in brownies, maple syrup on scrambled eggs, you get the idea…)
3. I am closer to my cousin than I am my sisters
4. I have worn glasses since I was 8 years old
5. I find sleeping during the day, with sunlight filling the room, super relaxing
6. I always, always, ALWAYS wear at least 2 shirts at once
7. I only wear “real” shoes a handful of times a year…I’m totally a flip flop girl :]
8. I never ever brush my hair
9. I have a habit of listening to the same song on repeat, for weeks and weeks on end
10. I only dance while cooking
11. I cannot stand the feeling of wet paper, I seriously will not touch it

Questions from College On Crutches:

1. Where is the most interesting place your blog has been read?- I noticed some views in Pakistan a few weeks ago.
2. What is your favorite libation?- Well when I am allowed to drink (which is not anytime soon) I am a big fan of a nice sweet white wine, or a Southern Comfort and Coke. :]
3. Kindle/ipad or “old fashioned” book?- “Old fashioned” for sure. It’s just not the same on a screen.
4. If you could do anything in the world what would it be?- Become a doctor and heal people.
5. When did you decide to start blogging and why?- Almost a year ago (note to self: check on that date), and I’m not really sure why. I think something deep down inside me knew that my life was about to be flipped upside down and I would need the outlet, and boy was it right.
6. How do you feel about sharing your story with the internet? Is it fun? Nerve wracking?- I love it. I am very much an open book, there isn’t much I won’t talk about, even to people I don’t know well…but this is different. Here I can write my deepest thoughts, things I don’t want to bother my friends with, or things that just are not meant to be spoken out loud. It is also nice that (as far as I know) there is only 1 person who reads this blog who knows me in person, so I can write what I want and not feel strange knowing that so-and-so knows x, y, and z.
7. What’s your “specialty meal”?- In my family I am famous for my green bean casseroles (a favorite of mine), and my “World Famous Bean Dip” (a 7 layer taco dip)
8. What is your favorite holiday and how do you celebrate it?- Christmas. I find the traditions associated with the Christmas holiday very comforting. I love the rituals of decorating, the family tradition of the Christmas Eve candlelit church service, the opportunity to put effort into picking gifts I know everyone will like, the family time, and the excitement for the coming new year.
9. Who is one person who has changed your life for the better?- I have a dear friend who I think came into my life at just the right time, and who has made the process of divorce and finding who I am without my husband quite a bit easier…although she probably has no idea that she has.
10. What do you do to unwind from a long day?- Meditate, then lay in bed and binge watch my favorite tv shows
11. Who is your favorite author, or do you have a favorite book?- There is no way I could pick just one! Some of my favorites are Little Women, The Scarlet Letter, Anna Karenina, The Scarlet Pimpernel, and pretty much anything Jodi Picoult

Questions for nominees:
This post is taking forever, so just answer those questions ^, or make up your own, I don’t care 😉

Nominees:

http://realwomanshealth.wordpress.com/

http://sickandsickofit.wordpress.com/

http://lindseyslymelife.wordpress.com/

Gee whiz that was long! Have fun! 🙂

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Strength in my Scars

I often feel like many of my friends and family don’t understand why I am not self conscious about my scars; why I don’t care if they show and don’t shy away from things that may cause more. This is why. ❤

College on Crutches

**Warning: Scars & Self Harm are discussed. Read on if you wish.**

My body is home to an abundance of scars. Some are easily seen, while others are at the heart level, hidden from view. These scars have a variety of causes. Many are the result of my previous cutting addiction, some are reminders of surgeries, medication reactions, and mishaps from my childhood, and the rest have unknown origins.

I used to be ashamed of my scars. I thought people would judge me if they saw them, so I was always careful to keep them covered. When I was younger and a scar formed on my leg from a bad reaction to a medication, I wouldn’t let anyone see it. For years I covered it with a band-aid, hoping it would simply blend in with my skin. (I don’t think it worked.) When I was older and had marks from…

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The Great Hibernation

I am planning a hibernation. A for real, serious, not leaving my house for a very long time, hibernation.

I’m stockpiling food, committing to absolutely no obligations, warning everyone that every plan is tentative at the moment, and getting things that I’ve been wanting to do done so that they won’t be hanging over my head. I’ve got a list of tv shows and movies to watch, books to read, and projects to work on. Oh, and my cat to keep me company.

I’m ready. Let’s do this.

Fact is, it’s not actually going to happen, because unfortunately life requires leaving the house occasionally. Regardless, I’m preparing for it anyway.

I just don’t want to leave my house; I mean, I do but I don’t.

I am not depressed, or isolated, or antisocial, don’t worry…it just hurts.

The light hurts, the air hurts, the pressure exerted on my body by gravity hurts…breathing hurts, moving hurts, talking hurts. (I mean physically hurts)

Existing hurts. 

I just don’t want to try anymore, I don’t want to wake up and put on my face and pretend everything is ok when just breathing hurts.

So starting Thursday of this week I’m hibernating. I may come out occasionally, but if I don’t want to I’m not going to…and if I don’t want to put on my “everything is ok” face, then the world will just have to deal with it! I have spent the last 15 years or so putting on my face and I am going to allow myself the next few months to not have to if I don’t want to, I think I’ve earned that.

Why Thursday you ask? Because on Wednesday I am having my picc line placed to start IV antibiotics for lyme on Thursday…so I am preparing myself to most likely feel really terrible for the next few months.

It’s gonna be a super fun time…which I am sure ya’ll will hear about :]

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<3

“The glory of friendship is not the outstretched hand, not the kindly smile, nor the joy of companionship; it is the spiritual inspiration that comes to one when you discover that someone else believes in you and is willing to trust you with a friendship” — Ralph Waldo Emerson

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It’s been a big week…

This week I did a couple of things that I have been wanting to do for quite a while…and that terrify me.

1.) I went back to school! I have been wanting to do this since I graduated 2 years ago, but I let my health, my ex husband, money, and not knowing what I wanted to do get in the way. Not anymore! If I’m too sick, I don’t care, I’m going to live my life. Plus I finally think I know what I’m supposed to do with my life, now to just do it…and it’s going to be a long road.

I enrolled in just one class, Parasitology and Human Disease (lol!), and based on the first day of class I think I picked the right one. One professor is funny and the other seems very nice; plus the schedule appears to be the right pace for me to be able to handle. And I’ve also made a sort-of friend! (That’s a huge deal for me with my social anxiety 😦 ).

2.) I quit my job. This is really hard to do, not to mention really scary. I’ve known it needed to happen for quite a while but it’s easier said than done. I love the kids I watch and the family I work for, they’ve done a lot for me over the 4 years I’ve worked for them. I’ve watched the kids grow up a lot, and can’t imagine not being there to continue watching.

Not to mention all the complicated emotions that come with losing the ability to work due to illness. This is the first time that I have really felt like this disease is ruining my life; the first time I really feel like it is taking stuff away from me. I’ve been lucky to not have had to really deal with those emotions before, but that makes this harder. I feel like I just was pushed off the end of a cliff and I have no idea what is at the bottom. I am not entirely sure how I will support myself, or when I will be able to work again, or IF I will be able to work again…if I’m being completely honest. That’s absolutely terrifying.

I’d like to write more but I’m just pretty exhausted and numb. I don’t know what to say other than that I hope I’m making the right decisions.

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Things that suck after divorce: part 1

I’m making this a part 1 because while I don’t have any more things for the list at the moment, I am certain I will find some sooner or later.

1. Bridal showers- I have one to go to tomorrow; and while I am very happy for my dear friend who is getting married, I can’t help but feel sad. I never got a bridal shower. I never got a real wedding. I never got the marriage I wanted either, for that matter.
2. Bridal shower shopping – I never got many gifts either, beyond a few bucks from family members who didn’t get the memo. I made a registry once, just for the fun of it, knowing I wouldn’t be needing it any time soon (That was depressing, and I was still married then). So as I shopped for a gift for my friend (yes, I majorly procrastinated, get over it) I found myself walking through the store noting things my ex would have liked, or things I liked that he would have hated.
3. Weddings – (self explanatory, right?). My friends is coming up, and while I promised her I would go…I’m secretly dreading it. I think may cry, and there will be a ton of other people (from my past) there that I do not want to talk to, let alone lose my shit in front of. 😦

I feel like I want to scream at her “don’t do it!” and “it won’t be like you think”. I’m so jaded, and I hate that.

I’m just sad.

Just when I think I’m getting better, something hits me and I am so overwhelmingly sad again.

Confession: sometimes late at night I put my wedding rings on and wear them for a little while.

I miss my husband (or at least who he was before the slide into darkness happened). I miss being married. I miss the weight of the rings on my finger. I miss coming home and him being there. I miss hanging out with him. I miss using the word “husband” when talking about him…I hate this term “ex”.

I saw him a couple of weeks ago; I offered to help him out with something. So we were sitting and waiting, and I mentioned my pacemaker surgery. He started off being mean with a below the belt comment about my “new boyfriend” holding my hand during surgery, to which I replied “I don’t have a new boyfriend, I don’t need one”. Then he teased me, just like he used to, about me just needing my mommy to take care of me. I said “oh I definitely need my mommy”, and he laughed and told me I’m adorable. Just like he used to.

I miss that.

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Beautiful

Don’t tell me I’m beautiful. I have already heard that word rubbed raw across the flesh of so many girls before me. Thrown at them like rocks that beat the skin of those we don’t understand. “You are beautiful” we yell with such contempt. “God damnit, why won’t you just believe me, you’re beautiful!” It’s not a compliment. It is a victory march of your own self sacrifice. “You’re beautiful” we say through gritted teeth. “You’re beautiful we spit out through tears, looking at a reflection we hate. “You’re beautiful” we say holding a body that has never felt the arms of another. “You’re beautiful”. Don’t tell me I’m beautiful. A word like that floats on the surface, give me something with depth. Tell me I’m intelligent. Tell me I’m courageous. Tell me that when I laugh the whole world smiles. Tell me that my voice is sweeter than strawberries. Remind me that my hands have helped flowers grow, painted the ocean, and captured the sky in my phone. Assure me that with a mind like mine, I can change the world. Don’t tell me I’m beautiful. I don’t really care if it’s true. I’ve spent years trying to convince myself that beauty goes through and through. Don’t tell me I’m beautiful. I’ve felt the word splatter against me enough for a lifetime. I am better than the “beautiful” that slips from your lips. I am the ocean, 36,000 feet deep. There are parts of me you have never seen. I am outer space, infinite in your search. I am not simply “beautiful”. I am a fucking masterpiece. — in known

Art by Alex Kanevsky

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