We chase down library delinquents.

I endured a week of appointments, including a biopsy of something in my jaw.  I started another round of antibiotics, because the first round didn’t finish the job.  I was given more hydrocodone, some 800 mg Motrin, and the disgusting antibiotic pills that are chalky, and begin disintegrating before I can wash them down with water, leaving a nasty aftertaste.  I have to take 8 of them a day, which feels ridic.  Unfortunately, I can’t run until they’re gone, so I’m complying.  The pain is history, but I’ve been running a low grade fever today.  I went to the new ER that’s just down the street.  It was full of shiny, and I felt like I was dreaming the whole time I was there.  I’m home now, and feeling a bit better.

Next week, I have more appointments.  I’m not as stressed out about it as I would have been in the past.  Therapy is helping.  I’m much better at taking a deep breath, and just getting things over with.  I don’t fear meltdowns so much anymore.  They don’t have much power over me anymore, because I’m pretty good at shutting them down before they ruin my day.  That’s awesome.  Here is a photo of my cat in the little fort I made her.  tuxedo cat under a blanket

Did he send you part of our VCR?

Today was a good day.  I saw my therapist yesterday, after not seeing her in a while.  She helped me devise a new plan for my morning routine, and when I tested it out today, it worked.  I ran, spent 30 minutes playing with my cat, and showered.  The 30 minute addition was enough to snap me out of deep-thinking mode, enabling me to focus on the steps for my shower.  I cut my shower time in half on the first try.  Bonus.  We also discussed my feeling pressured to move, and what not to do when the pressure starts wearing me down.  Also helpful.  I like my therapist.  I asked about seeing her less often, and as I was asking it, I wondered if I was asking only to hear her response.  Her answer settled that for me.

I’ve been having a rough time ever since I found out my sister is sick.  Of course this isn’t the time to step back on therapy.  This would have been clear, had I finished the thought silently.  It’s the first time I recall being embarrassed over asking the obvious.  I’m changing in ways I wasn’t keeping track of, and it startles me at times.  Stating the obvious is like breathing to me.  At least it used to be.  I’ve been playing hashtag games casually for a year now.  It’s had an impact on how I relate to people.  I think it’s positive.  I’ve learned so much about social rules, and people.  How to think of things through a humorous filter, to avoid being offended, for example.  How to step away when someone upsets me, rather than telling them off, and blocking them as my go-to reaction.  The first time I noticed I was upset over a misunderstanding, I was so relieved I chose to walk away, rather than react.

I’ve learned a lot from other autistic people and activists too.  I know now that it’s okay to disagree with some things, and agree with others.  I don’t have to write off people who hold beliefs different than my own.  It’s better to just listen.  I still think Trump is an abomination, and hope he’s defeated.  I’ve chosen to support Clinton.  There’s a lot that could be added, but it would just be my opinions, based on my limited view of the world.  Perspective seems to be the biggest factor in determining political choices.  I’m learning a new way of processing human interaction, and it’s difficult.  Imagining myself as someone else, with different circumstances, values, and goals is challenging, but rewards me by broadening my perspective.  It’s worth the effort.  I hope I’m able to master it.  It’s an abstract concept, but if I stand on my mental tippy-toes, I can do it.

It’s amazing to me how a single day of my routine being restored has vastly decreased my anxiety levels.  I can remember a time when having my routine disrupted was as devastating to my family as to me.  I’ve come a long way…  But I’d rather think about where I’m going next.  I’m off to read.

Didn’t you see the sign on the door?

I’m in sinus hell today.  It’s so humid outside, it feels like breathing through a wet sponge.  I just finished writing another letter to the USPS.  It’s a complaint, of course.  I got one out of two packages supposed to be delivered today, but both were reported as delivered.  This is the third time in 3 months that I’ve had this exact issue.  Oddly, my first complaint was far more vehement.  Proof that therapy is helping.  I didn’t even know it was quirky to write complaint letters until a few months ago.  Complaint letters are something I’ve been writing since I was four, and discovered our typewriter.

I felt clever about it, because I thought I’d discovered a great equalizer between those considered children, and those considered adults.  Nobody could tell (in my mind), that I wasn’t an adult when I typed my complaints.  I knew that would give them more power.  Now I recognize the fact that most people don’t bother writing them.  At first, I was bummed by this information.  It suddenly felt as ineffective as talking about, rather than voting in elections.  But I still write them, sometimes.  It helps me feel less powerless in a world where all is subject to relativity.  At least they’re getting shorter, and slightly less condescending.  I think my goal for September will be to shorten them to the length of a Tweet.  I was going to say stop sending them, but I prefer acknowledging reality.

I get so intensely frustrated when things like this happen.  I internalize as much as I can, but so far, some still leaks out in complaint letters.  I think I automatically stop internalizing when I get too close to the meltdown barrier.  I’m slowly getting a stronger sense of where it is.  It’s hard, because narrowing down the point where a meltdown occurs feels a lot like playing Russian Roulette in slow motion, ten minutes after winning the lottery.  The whole process makes me cranky.  Now that I’ve sent the letter, I’ve calmed down considerably.  This is a situation that used to always end in tears, and I’m not even that upset anymore.  Nice.  Further proof in efficacy of therapy.  I love that word:  efficacy.  So, dear USPS, there will come a day when I shrug off your constant incompetence, and carry on- like it never even happened.  (And I didn’t even immediately follow that thought with- and that’s the day I live within walking distance of a brick and mortar Amazon store.)

It’s like swimming through a flabby armed spank machine.

Today was good.  I had therapy, and we discussed my upcoming move.  We also discussed recognizing when I’m triggered.  In the past, I’ve existed on autopilot as a way of avoiding being triggered.  I’ve also restricted what I view on TV or in movies for the same reason.  I watch a few sitcoms, Adult Swim, and Conan on a regular basis.  I stick to sci-fi/fantasy, comedy, and animated films at the theater.  Sometimes the sci-fi movies are too intense to watch in the theater due to overstimulation.  I hate when that happens.  When I saw Star Wars: Episode 1 – The Phantom Menace in the theater, it made me physically ill.  No, the film wasn’t that bad.  It was the pod racing.  The volume level was excruciating, and it went on for a fair bit of time.  I refused to leave before it was over, but hurled in the parking lot on my way out.  That sucked, and I had a wicked migraine right afterward.

The pod racing was exciting, though.  It just exceeded my stimulation tolerance.  I’ve been wary ever since.  I did see Star Wars: The Force Awakens in the theater on opening night.  Because duh.  I think seeing General Leia, which made me cry, countered any overstimulation that may have occurred.  That was an event I’m certain I’ll remember until I die.  Or more hopefully, until I upload my memories into a digital format, and put my body in zero tao.  Or something.  And I’ll make the grandchildren of generation Z roll their eyes and groan every time I tell them the story of Princess Leia, and the rebellion she led.  Right after telling them to get off my virtual lawn.  Frakin’ kids, those days.

I don’t know if I can be friends with you anymore, after this display.

Today was good.  I talked to my therapist, again.  She makes me laugh a lot, which is awesome.  I chatted with an Apple Support rep. online, and we fixed my main issue.  I was ecstatic, because I thought I’d have to take it to a tech in person.  I went online to check my AppleCare dates, and figured I may as well check their database to see if it was an easy fix.  Nothing came up, so I went into the chat.  It was an easy, albeit time consuming fix.  However, I’m still having problems with powering down.  I wasn’t planning on seeking support for that, as it’s an OS X issue, and contacting support for a software issue is against my religion, (as a software engineer).

I got my case number and thanked the guy who helped me.  He did a good job, and didn’t make me feel frustrated by over-explaining simple tasks.  I think the way I explained my issue was enough to inform him that I wasn’t a computer neophyte.  That’s all just pride and ego flexing.  I think it’s practically a human trait to dislike being told how to do what you already know how to do.  It could just be an American thing, though.  I’ve had more than one non-American imply that we tend toward arrogance.  I don’t get upset when non-Americans criticize our nation because it amuses me.  When there’s over 300 million people being insulted right along with you, it’s kinda hard to take it personally.

The whole concept of nationalism amuses me to a degree.  My amusement over it increases with age.  The older I get, the more I see myself as an earthling, and less as an American.  My time in the service helped me see beyond the lies we’re taught in school.  I suppose that’s what experience does.  It alters your focus and perspective.  I still have mind boggling (to me), experiences on a regular basis.  Sometimes I think it’s because my world went from being very small to huge overnight.  But I think it’s probably more complex than that.  I’ve always been the kind of person who faces fear like I’m secretly participating in a lifelong game.  I jump in with both feet, and come what may.  The more it scares me, the more likely I am to rush in and get it over with.

Even as a little girl, I would jump into the pool rather than slowly allow my body to adjust to the temperature.  I think it’s because there’s not a detectable difference in how I experience fear, be it from a spider, or jumping out of a perfectly good plane.  Both scenarios scare me as far as I can be scared.  So I kill the damn spider, (after trying to get anyone else to do it for me).  Or I just say, “Fuck it”, and jump.  I’d like to say this strategy is working well for me, but who knows.  I can say that it makes my life pretty exciting, sometimes.  Usually, the exciting parts are far better in hindsight, though.

My brain tends to forget the sucky stuff, and put a red bow on the rest.  For example, I have fond memories of basic training, and remember it as a fun time in my life.  But if I challenge that ridiculous notion with a little thought, I can recall sitting on a bench in the latrine, wondering if it was possible to lose weight from crying.  When I had that thought, I was extremely stressed out, and spent an indecent amount of time wishing hateful things on my Drill SGT’s.  Now, I look back and laugh.  I was such a spoiled child when I showed up for basic.  The Army cured me of both being spoiled, and being a child.  Uncle Sam had a lot of practice long before I came along.  Although, according to my Drill SGT, I was the most suggestion making, why asking, Private he’d ever trained.  So there’s that.

Oh, I see. You’re friends with the Urinator, aren’t you?

I miss running daily.  I can resume on Friday, but that seems a long way off right now.  I’ve been compensating for the inevitable attempts by The Depression Monster to derail me by rocking, while listening to songs I used to run to when I was a teenager.  The power of music to evoke vivid memories fascinates me beyond words.  It’s been quite comforting.  I’ve mostly recalled scenes and sounds from past running routes.  My route on Fort Bliss, in El Paso brought back a lot of memories from that time in my life.

It’s made me really appreciate the fact that my routes are now completely on bike trails, which means no exhaust fumes.  I’ll be very tempted to do a long run on Friday.  It’s cooled off considerably, but the adult in me is advising caution.  My inner child, (the smart-ass who strongly suspects that life as we know it is actually an astonishingly advanced game of The Sims), is pushing for a 10 mile run, followed by a bubble bath while eating chocolate cake.  Yeah.  I’m going to go with option 2.

Uplift desk

I ordered a new desk online the other day.  It’s a powered sit/stand desk with a bamboo top and a black C-frame base.  I got the 72″ version to accommodate both my gaming setup and my Mac setup.  I’ll be using a 32″ curved Samsung monitor with AMD FreeSync for my gaming setup, and a 27″ Dell Ultrasharp for my Mac mini.  Unfortunately, my Mac mini isn’t working right now.  It boots up, but won’t talk to my monitor.  I tried to troubleshoot it by changing the DisplayPort to miniDisplayPort cable, using an HDMI connection, and a different monitor.  Nothing.  But the good news is that I purchased AppleCare this time.  It’s less than a year old, so I’m still within the original warranty, but only by a little over a month.

I suspect it’s something I could fix myself, but since I have AppleCare, I won’t bother.  I’ll take it to a local authorized repair shop this weekend, because the hacker in me won’t let it out of my sight while my hard drive is still in it.  It’s not that I have anything illicit on my hard drive.  I just try to practice good security.  Besides, I’m such an airhead that I might not notice a stealthed keylogger, or similar.  Also, it amuses me that I’m hypervigilant with my data security, because I don’t really have anything worth hiding, (that isn’t already encrypted).  Overkill FTW!

uplift-motion-stool-127uplift-large-keyboard-tray-342

uplift-cpu-holder-257

I also got some accessories, and one of those anti-fatigue mats.  The monitor is VESA mountable, fortunately.  I haven’t decided yet if I’ll use a single mouse/keyboard for both setups, but that would probably be ideal.  My speakers are Kanto YU5’s, so they’ll connect to both systems via Bluetooth, but I’ll probably just use my headset for my gaming computer.  I’m excited to get it all set up.  I’ll try and remember to take photos when I’m done.  I’ll be moving it with me to Denver, along with my filing cabinet and my armless Tulip chair.  My nephew wants my recliner, so that’s going too.  The rest of my furniture will be given away to whomever gets it out of here.

I had therapy on Monday this week.  My therapist was cracking up when I told her about the last time I moved, about 5 years ago.  I got rid of most of my stuff then too, and began by having a garage sale.  However, I suck as a salesperson, and after a few hours of anxiously talking to the strangers who came by, I hung up a sign that said, “If you want it, take it”.  It worked.  By the end of the day, everything was gone, including the tables they were displayed upon.  I watched a steady stream of people carrying things away from a window for a bit.  I was just glad to see it go.

I’m kind of amazed by how much stuff I’ve acquired in the 5 years since.  I really need to stop with the geek subscription boxes.  It’s basically lots of junk I’d never otherwise purchase, plus one or two things a month that make me squee.  And a black or grey t-shirt each month, because apparently those are the approved colors in the geek uniform.  It’s nice to get a surprise package in the mail each month, but I’m going to find one that uses the same model with candy.  That way I can go one step further, and be a consuming consumer.  Sigh.

I’m going to adopt a minimalist lifestyle in Denver.  I’ve already made the transition.  It’ll just be far more evident when I get rid of all my excess stuff from before I outgrew vapid consumerism.  I’m going to use my money to amplify my values instead.  More specifically, to strategically help a few people.  Veterans, disabled people, and those who just need a small boost to vastly improve their circumstances.  I’m going to do some research, and find out where I can make a positive difference in the lives of others, instead of accumulating a lot of stuff that will only end up owning me.

Therapy is having a powerful effect on me, and it’s happening quickly.  It’s changed my views on psychology, for one thing.  I’ve seen it’s effectiveness firsthand, and I’ve realized that part is due to having a really good therapist, but an even bigger part is due to my willingness to listen, comprehend, and apply what she teaches me.  It’s not easy.  Usually, I want her to figuratively hold my hand for every difficult step I take, but my desire to meet a challenge by myself is far stronger.  I’m already addicted to her giving me positive feedback.  She’s totally like a SGT about it, too.  She does it sparingly, but when I most need to hear it.  Yesterday, she told me she liked the progress she sees in me, but also made it clear that I have a way to go yet.  It made me laugh in reflection because it reminded me of how my brother Steve used to give me the bigger cookie, but lick it first.

 

Because I have to return the socks and get different ones.

It’s been an interesting week.  I made it to Denver on Monday, and returned on Wednesday.  It was a productive trip in terms of getting things ready for my move.  I even went on a short run with a representative from a local running club.  I felt the difference when running in a higher altitude.  It’ll take some time to adjust once I move.  I ended up getting dehydrated from the trip.  The combination of flying, running, and not hydrating enough for the circumstances landed me in the ER twice since I’ve been home.  The first time, they gave me IV fluids and something for altitude sickness.  The second time, more IV fluids, a brain scan, and a potassium drip.  The potassium burns going in, so that sucked.

I felt much better afterward, and the burning stopped when the drip stopped.  I learned that the hybrid weed strain continues to eliminate my anxiety.  I also learned that aside from highly stressful events, I probably won’t be using it on a regular basis.  At least not initially.  This is due to the fact that it lowers inhibitions.  My therapist agrees that it makes me more vulnerable, and although she could see a positive difference when we did a video chat online, I don’t think she felt the benefits outweighed the potential dangers I could face when using it alone.  So now I’ll only use weed when I’m around someone I trust well enough to tell me off if I start making poor decisions.

While I didn’t put myself in a compromising situation, I did do silly things that I doubt I would have done otherwise.  Like ordering room service, taking a photo of the food, then forgetting to eat it.  It was so odd to have food sitting on the table with me across the room, not guarding it from my furry little predator.  It made me laugh to think how I must look at home, constantly scanning for a flying furball coming in low for a dash-n-grab off my plate.  My cat is slightly less coordinated than most cats.  So her dash-n-grabs almost always result in the entire plate crashing to the floor.  But she looks so focused and determined that it’s impossible to do anything but laugh.

Sometimes, I’ll catch a glimpse of her out of the corner of my eye, and I know she’s scouting.  I start laughing then, which probably encourages her, but I just can’t help it.  It’s so funny to watch her little butt wiggle back and forth while she does kitty physics in her head before springing.  I’m feeling a lot better now, but I’m a bit sore from dragging my R2D2 suitcase around the Denver airport.  I’m mixed race, which is almost never an issue.  I’m African American.  It’s obvious to anyone who doesn’t work for TSA, apparently.  They seemingly choose to see the slight resemblance to a woman of Middle Eastern descent.  I don’t wear a burka.  I wear jeans and a t-shirt like it’s a uniform.  I almost always wear headphones and sunglasses.  I walk like a soldier, and I probably act like one, always taking in the details.  Okay, I’m starting to see why TSA profiles me.  Nevermind.

So anyway, the first time I went through TSA security, I forgot to retrieve my laptop from the tray.  I left security, got on the train, and then walked the remaining distance to my gate.  I sat down, and pulled out my iPad.  I started playing a puzzle game, and then I remembered I have this game on my laptop.  I reach for it, and OMG, it’s not there!!  I begin to panic, and collect my things.  I walk over to the nearest TSA official, and tell her I forgot my laptop in security.  She asks me what time my plane leaves, and I inform her.  She sends me back to security to see if it was turned in.  I drag R2D2 back to security, only moving more quickly this time.  I should note that I arrived at the airport 3 hours before my flight was due to leave, as requested by my airline.

I finally get back to security, and am informed that I have to go through security again.  Huge eyeroll as the lines are much longer than when I went through before.  As I’m slowly walking through the maze of lines, I finally reach the front, and an adorable puppy on a leash comes by, sniffing all the suitcases.  It couldn’t have been more than 6 months old!  A chocolate labrador, probably mixed with something.  It took everything I had to refrain from laying down next to that dog and convincing it that playing with me is far more fun than sniffing for um… Bombs…  (Because that’s what TSA is doing in Denver, wink wink).

Then when R2D2 slides through the machine, the guy watching the scanner scrutinizes me… Oops, I mean my bag.  I looked right at him, and rolled my eyes.  He pulled R2D2 out and slid him down the WRONG lane.  I sighed audibly.  He was flagging me for a search and grope.  Fucker.  So some really cute black dude went through my stuff, including wiping down my drivers’ license to check for some sort of residue.  But that was nothing compared to the pat down I got from the TSA woman.  She used the backs of her hands against me, but that didn’t make it any less invasive.  I kind of feel like I should call her.

I did finally get my laptop back.  I was so grateful, and the TSA official who handed it to me laughed at my happy dance.  I had already begun preparing myself not to cry in case they couldn’t find it so I was ecstatic.  I made it back to my gate in plenty of time to board my plane home.  And to think I bitched and moaned about having to show up 3 hours early to clear TSA.  But yeah… It sucks being profiled.  I suspect being Autistic makes me appear a bit shady to security types, too.  If I didn’t get carsick so easily, I’d probably still fly because I love the taking off part, and it’s so much quicker than driving.

I missed my cat while I was away.  She was in her new hiding spot when I got back.  She squeaked at me for the first hour.  Then she glued herself to me for a bit.  But I must have done something loud, because she retreated back to her hiding spot for several hours.  I finally coaxed her out and carried her around for a while, cooing at her.  She hugs back when you carry her over your shoulder.  It’s so adorable.  She forgave me after that, but it really tugged at my heart.  I wanted to tell her I’d never do this again, but I will be doing this as much as monthly until I move.  I’m starting to think I’ll move out of sheer exasperation over travelling back and forth.  But nah, I know me.  I’ll turn my focus to becoming the Ultimate Packing Ninja, and figure out how to pack for a week’s stay in a single backpack.  Challenge accepted.

Jerry… You gotta see the baby!

I didn’t sleep well last night.  My cat has learned a new trick, and I’m not sure how I feel about it yet.  I lay down and quickly fell asleep after a tiring day.  I apparently started to have a nightmare, and my cat woke me up.  She’s a tiny, squeaky, normally quiet, kitty.  But when she wants my attention, she yells.  There’s really no other way to describe it.  It’s loud, and insistent.  I awoke immediately, startled.  I was too far gone to know if I made a noise or was restless and disturbed her.  She decided the thing to do was wake me up.  I looked at her, and then I said, “What?!”.  Because she scared the shit out of me.  So she made her meow sound that sounds like I just offended her, which I probably did by speaking loudly in my exasperation.

So I rolled over and attempted to sleep again.  It took a little longer, but I fell back into sleep, and nightmares.  And she did it again!  Only the second time she climbed on my back and didn’t bother to retract her claws.  Ouch.  So I sat up and was a bit disoriented, and a lot irritated.  “It’s 3:18 AM! WTF do you want?! It’s not time to eat yet!”  This, again, was in an exasperated tone, and she took umbrage in a major way.  She did one of those loud, long meows.  Translated, she said, “Look.  I was sound asleep.  Twice now, you’ve done whatever you did that woke me up, and then got all up in MY shit, like it was MY fault.  Bitch, I’ll cut ya!”, probably.

So I got up and fed her.  It was a hush feeding.  I’m not proud of it.  Then I thought about playing WoW, but decided I’d better wait until it’s actually daytime.  I tend to get excited and a little stompy when I play.  I sit on the floor, and get up often between daily quests in Draenor.  Whoever lives below me probably doesn’t want to get in on being awakened too early.  Being loud before dawn on a Saturday is bordering on cruel.  So I worked on a jigsaw puzzle.  It’s been awhile since I’ve worked one.  I used to have a 1k piece puzzle a day habit.  My life is changing, and there doesn’t seem to be as much time for puzzles of late.

I had a good session with my therapist yesterday.  In reflection, she reassured me about some things, (my fear of becoming too dependent on her), and helped me see things from a different perspective.  She’s really good at correcting me in a manner that’s so gentle that I don’t even realize it happened until later.  That’s so different than how the Army approaches it.  Gentle is the best word I can think of to describe it.  In the Army, if you fuck up, they tell you to stop fucking up.  Pretty much in those words.  They aren’t worried about your ego.  They don’t pay you to have a fucking ego, soldier!  Which *always* amused me very much.

With my therapist, she explains what she means, and if I misunderstand, she waits for me to finish misunderstanding, then explains again with different words.  I gotta say, it’s delightful.  It’s also amusing to me, because of the stark contrast to that which I’m accustomed.  It doesn’t matter if I’m sitting there bawling, or experiencing obvious post-crying hiccups.  She doesn’t shame for tears.  She doesn’t pretend she’s unaware of my tears, either.  She just talks to me, and listens as I stumble over words, trying too hard to get my meaning verbalized.  She doesn’t cut me off and finish what I was obviously trying to say, either.  That is a wicked silencer with me.  I acknowledge that it’s likely a chore to listen to me stumble over speaking out loud, and trying to remain calm enough to string together some semblance of my meaning.

I really struck gold with this therapist, and I’m proud of myself for scrutinizing the things that matter most to me, and doing my research before moving forward with her.  It makes a huge difference.  It’s much better than being assigned to whomever the VA has available at the moment.  Especially considering the fact that I remain convinced that many who work at the VA do so because they don’t measure up to the requirements for civilian health care.  There are also many who are working there in exchange for education or citizenship, it seems.  And of course, a small number of people who are excellent at what they do, regardless of where they do it.  But since you rarely see the same person more than a few times before it changes, it’s probably good to be a bit suspect of the revolving door.

I’m not used to developing a relationship with a single caregiver for this long.  It’s been about 2 months now that I’ve been seeing her.  That’s 20 years in VA time.  It’s different.  There’s trust, for one thing.  And we have goals that we’ve discussed numerous times.  The biggest one being that I don’t need her assistance any further because I’ve mastered coping with life by myself.  That’s the prize at the end of the journey.  It’s hard to remember that it’s a jog, not a sprint.  I’m impatient.  I want to absorb everything she can teach me as fast as she can teach it.  Faster.  I want to be self reliant.  Needing assistance from others makes me cranky, I think.  But when others try to assist me with things I can do for myself, I get frustrated.

When my sister tries to hold me back from pursuing total independence, it makes me resent her.  I appreciate how much she’s helped me, but I need her to understand that it’s temporary.  That I’m not rejecting her, just her unneeded assistance.  She’s old enough to be my mom, and that doesn’t help matters.  She sees me as the kid who used to stay with her during summer breaks.  The one who blended in with her own kids, and read all the time.  They were more like siblings to me because they were closer in age.  She didn’t see me grow up in the Army, or watch me earn my PhD.  She doesn’t seem to know how to see the adult me.  My therapist is going to help me communicate this with her, so hopefully she will learn to see the me I am now.

Bottle wipe supersedes it.

Today was rough.  The thunderstorms stopped, and I was catching up on much needed sleep, when at 3 AM, I heard shouting outside my window.  As I lay there, debating about whether or not I wanted to look out and see what the ruckus was all about, my cat took it upon herself to jump onto the window sill and (I assume), scold the culprit for being too loud.  She must have been in deep slumber, too.  So I got out of bed, and looked out the window.  There were 3 police SUV’s parked in non-parking spaces, apparently talking to a resident.  I heard the resident shouting obscenities at the police.  I rolled my eyes, and pulled on the jeans I had discarded on the chair before laying down.

I pulled on a t-shirt and went out onto my balcony to get a better look.  The resident seemed to be either under the influence of something potent, or perhaps having a bad mental health night.  The police were patient, as it went on for about an hour.  I got my humongous jug and filled it with water again.  Then I heard more cussing, so I looked outside, and the resident was laying on his back on the ground.  He was probably restrained, but I couldn’t tell in the darkness.  He continued to cuss at the police, like they had no business intervening in whatever led them to be summoned.  The next time I checked, they were gone.  I felt reassured that our police are excellent, and don’t murder people.

I was too tired to go back to sleep, so I got out a coloring book and my gel pens, and listened to some Bach with headphones on.  It helped me wind down enough to try laying down again at around 5 AM.  I slept until 7:23 AM, when the garbage trucks started banging dumpsters.  I proceeded to work, business as usual, but found I couldn’t focus very well.  We’re doing Lego stop-motion, so I was frustrated not to be able to contribute much.  I told them I’d make a soundtrack this weekend, so there’s that.  It’s a good thing, because it’s also one of the activities in my Depression Box.  I met with my therapist again today, after getting stressed out over finding out my lease was up for renewal.  I wasn’t planning to renew, as I’m moving to Denver as soon as I’m able to make the change.

After discussing my options, my therapist agreed that renewing for a year was a good plan.  It will allow me to pull off this major challenge of relocating to a new state when I’m ready.  My new unit isn’t ready for occupation, and I don’t want to stay in a hotel, or with one of my nephews while it’s completed.  I was bawling when the session began, but by the time it was over, I was smiling, and no longer freaked out.  I had no idea therapy could be so effective.  This isn’t the first time she’s helped me avert a meltdown, either.  I didn’t even know that was possible.  There aren’t words to describe how awesome that is.

My nephews are wizards with wood, and are making me some custom lighted displays for my vinyl figure collection, as well as a custom computer desk that will allow me to have both my gaming desktop, and my Mac desktop integrated into one awesome setup.  My bed design plan turned out to be hideous when I saw it in CAD.  I like to feel enclosed when I sleep, so I thought it would be an awesome solution.  I was so wrong.  Instead, my sister said to look into a canopy bed.  Apparently, that would accomplish the enclosed feeling without being a fugly fire hazard.  It was monstrous!  I’m absolutely not switching to a career in furniture design.  You’re welcome.

My nephew thought it was hilarious.  Architects can be such furniture snobs.  It would be annoying if it wasn’t funny.  So, no to this, (I’d never sleep):canopy bed with built in projection screen

Yes to something like this:

normal canopy bed

The good news is that Denver has stores like Design Within Reach, West Elm, and Room and Board.  One of them will have something that works, I’m sure.  I’m headed east next weekend to visit my Neurology specialist.  I’m going to head down to NYC afterward, and visit my sister.  Hopefully I’ll find some lowbrow artwork I love.  Some of my favorite artists live there.  The weather has cooled off, but at least there’s no thunder.  I’m pretty loopy from sleep deprivation, so I’m off to read, then crash.