Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Learn it, Live it!

A friend of mine is going through a very hard time right now-out of work, court case regarding her daughter, etc...

I called her last night to check in on her, and I heard the strangest thing-me, giving advice that I should be taking.

"Stop beating yourself up over things you did in the past. That's a dangerous place for us to be."

"You did what you thought was right."

"You are talented and skilled-if it wasn't for this economy, things would be totally different. It's not your fault."

"Look how far you have come. You've completely changed your life-give yourself credit for all the changes you have made."

"You're surrounded by people who love you-don't forget that."

Weird, that I can say all those things when I forget them myself so easily.

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Book Review

Lowboy by John Wray.

I do love stories about the mentally ill-Lowboy is a 16 year old schizophrenic who has gone off his meds, and is convinced he has the answer to global warming. I enjoyed this book quite a bit, it had a plot twist I should have seen coming, and it made me sad in the end.

What more could you ask for?

Side note-I just read the New York Times review of this book, and if I hadn't read the book already, I'd be kind of mad. I don't like to give away too many details in my reviews, it kind of spoils it. But maybe that's just me. Maybe I've been doing this wrong THE WHOLE TIME. But, it is my blog and I can do what I want. So up yours NYT!!

Sunday, April 26, 2009

Book Review

I Am Legend by Richard Matheson.

I could have sworn that I heard or read somewhere that this was an excellent book with some kind of bizarre plot twist, but I found neither. I had a lot of trouble finishing it, and I probably wouldn't have if I wasn't expecting greatness.

Vampires have basically taken over the earth, and there is one man left who isn't a vampire, blah blah blah. Maybe the movies better.

Book Review

Double Cross by James Patterson.

Patterson is another author I will occasionally read when I can't find anything else at the library. I'm not really a huge fan. But this book wasn't bad-his Alex Cross chartacter is trying to find two separate murderers. I think there was more of a back story to this book, from a prior novel, but it was still a decent story.

Ouch

Self defense class went very well yesterday, though I had forgotten how bad it hurts to get attacked for 4 hours. I'm bruised from head to toe, and my body just aches. It was nice to have a refresher course though, there were quite a few things I forgot. I highly recommend all women taking a class. Very empowering. And we got a free weapon! I can't remember what it's called, some aluminum stick thing you can jab in people's eyes.

It's taking all my strength to get through my chores today.

Happy Sunday!

Friday, April 24, 2009

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Why?

Why do I try to cultivate friendships that are losing propositions?

I have a friend, let's call her Bessie-we had a falling out about a year ago, though prior to that she was my best friend. Then I started to realize that she was always making me feel bad about myself, then I went off on her husband, so we took a little break. we've been socializing here and there, and I invited her to come to my self defense class on Saturday.

She just called me and canceled with some lame ass excuse.

Part of me is like "Ok, I knew this was going to happen". Part of me is actually really hurt. And part of me is convinced this is payback for a similar thing I did to someone God knows when.

Whatever. It will be a good lesson in learning how to be brave and do things on my own.

Damn it.

I just realized this blog layout cuts off the right half of my Friday Funnies. Not so funny now is it?

Changes to come, I suppose.

Want.

Finally!

The depression has lifted, and now I'm in a slightly manic phase-I'm having a little trouble focusing on one single thing. I know both mood extremes are not normal, but I would choose this over mind numbing depression any day.

I'm taking a vacation day tomorrow-since I won't be home all day Saturday I'll be able to get some things done and sneak in some alone time with Hubbs before Youngest gets home. Pretty excited about that.

And, that's all I've got today.

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Happy Blogoversary!

Yes, it's my one year anniversary of blogging. In the past year, I have read 62 books, gained self awareness, and found support in the strangest places.

I've realized that my feelings aren't facts, I have all that I could ever ask for in my own home, and sometimes you have to ask when you need help.

Sometimes strength means crying your eyes out, and letting go doesn't mean you don't care.

The world isn't as scary as I sometimes think, I need to be a better friend, and the best thing one can do for themselves is help someone else.

I am so incredibly lucky that I met my husband, and sometimes I need to give more than I get.

I have the two best sons a mother could ask for. One of them has blessed me with a beautiful family of his own, the other has shown me how much kindness there really is in the world. I have learned forgiveness and understanding from them both.

Sometimes the littlest things really are the most important.

But most importantly, I've learned that I really am going to be okay.

Monday, April 20, 2009

Monday Monday

New day-new attitude. That's the theory anyway. Focus on the positive, move forward-I can do those things.

I actually have quite a few things to look forward to right now. Self defense class Saturday, visiting Oldest and his family this summer, taking friends out to lunch-those are my happy things.

And I had a very productive weekend-I didn't spend as much time with my husband as I would have liked, but I did have good quality time with Youngest. So there you go.

Move forward.

Sunday, April 19, 2009

Still?

Yes, still. I'm still stuck in this weird depression mode-I'm living my life, and doing the things that are required of me, but I feel like I'm a spectator-I'm watching myself living my life.

It's been like 4-5-6-weeks. I don't know how to snap myself out of it. I'm torn between asking for help, and isolating, and stabbing myself in the arm, and living on Xanax-it feels hopeless right now.

I just want this feeling to go away. This is the only life I get-I don't want to spend it feeling this way.

Saturday, April 18, 2009

Book Review

Hit and Run by Lawrence Block.

This is from his Keller series of books-Keller is a hit man, and he's been framed. A lovable hit man, if there is such a thing. Quite a few twists and turns, it was very unexpected.

I really enjoy these books, and I hope he writes more.

Friday, April 17, 2009

Home

I love being home. And even though I know how this night is going to go, I don't feel too bad about it.

Hubbs is rebuilding a transmission, Youngest is doing whatever 13 year old boys do that don't involve mom, and I will probably drink too much. Yes, I fell off the wagon, but it was a planned fall, a controlled fall, so how bad can it get?

I'm bored and lonely, so I will drink to occupy myself, then wake up tomorrow and start anew with all my weekend plans.

That's the theory anyway.

Book Review

Savage Girls and Wild Boys by Michael Newton.

Non-fiction-various stories of children through the ages who have either lived for a significant period of time among animals, or because their parents were psychotic, never learned language skills and human interaction.

Apparently it happens more often than you would think-one story is of a Russian boy in the 90's, another of an American girl whose father kept her locked in a room, tied to a chair, in the 70's.

Kind of makes you wonder what the flying hell gets into peoples minds to make them think it's ok to just discard children or keep them tied to a chair for 13 years.

The girl from the 70's-they called her Genie-was truly a heartbreaking story. Once she was rescued, she was kept for observation, bounced from one home to another. I guess now she lives in some assisted living facility in California. Poor baby girl.

Read it, though it will break your heart.

Book Review

The Fallen by T. Jefferson Parker

Detective novels are my go to books when I can't find anything I like at the library. Or when I'm too lazy to actually look.

I like T. Jefferson Parker-his books are usually set in San Diego County, where I lived for quite a while, so they bring back memories, both good and bad.

Anyway, this is the story of a cop who, after a fall(more specifically, a throw) from a 6 story window, discovers he now has synethesia-his version lets him see emotions as colored shapes-when someone is lying, he sees black squares tumbling out of their mouths, envy is green triangles, whatever. Someone gets murdered, and he has to solve it.

Like I say, not a bad read!

Book Review

The Spare Room by Helen Garner.

I really liked this book. The story of a woman whose best friend is dying of cancer, and how she opens her home to the friend while she undergoes some crazy treatments.

The frustration the narrator feels,I could totally relate to. She was able to say "No, I can't do this anymore, you have to go home"-then of course feel guilty about it.

I think reading this book helped me to realize that the things I did, and kept on doing, while my mother was dying-were superhuman. No matter how exhausted I was, how much stress I felt, I kept going. It was the right thing to do.

I went in to foster care when I was 12 and my various mental problems really started manifesting themselves. Many people asked me "Why? Why are you doing all this for your mother when she gave up on you when you needed her the most?"

My answer-because it's the right thing to do.

Wow.

I was just thinking about changing my about me blurb, and I suddenly realized I am completely nuts.

What I was going to change it to was-

"A glimpse into the life of a bi-polar, borderline, former anorexic, alcoholic, post traumatic stress disorder sufferer."

Jesus, you'd think I'd be a little more thankful that I'm not in a facility somewhere.

Book Review

Now & Then by Robert B. Parker

I've actually read this book before, but I'm about out of reading material.

The story of Spenser, private eye, and his investigation into the murder of one of his clients. A pretty good read, though I must say, after reading every one of Parker's books, I'm getting a little sick of the banter between Spenser and his girlfriend.
But, if you're new to him, and are a fan of detective novels, you will probably find this interesting.

Random Bits of Self Forgiveness

So I was driving to work this morning and I saw this woman walking her two dogs-American Eskimos, the same dog my mother had. And I remembered when Ivory the dog died, and my mother was-of course-heartbroken.

This was during the last year of her life when she was basically house bound, and Ivory was her best friend and companion. I remember my mother calling me crying her eyes out, asking me to come over and just give her a hug, to help console her over the loss of her dog. I was so irritated, I really was. I remember thinking "God! Do I EVER get one minute that isn't completely based on my mom?" I had something going on at the time, so important that I don't even remember what it was now.

Now by this point, I was pretty much on call when it came to caring for my mom, and I still feel to this day that my step-dad put way too much of it on me. I was overwhelmed, tired, stressed, on the verge of tears at all times, it was horrible. One of the hardest times of my life.

Of course I went over and gave the hug my mom so desperately needed. I spent some time with her before I took off to do whatever.

This morning, seeing the lady with her dogs, I realized I really did the best I could during the last years of her life. Whatever decisions I made, I thought they were the best. And so what if I was irritated that I had to take a minute out of my self-important life to go hug my mother? She didn't know I was irritated, and really, isn't that what matters?

So, goodbye guilt I felt at being irritated when my mothers dog died and she needed me.

Goodbye!

Friday Funny 2

the dalai lama
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Friday Funny

Cyanide and Happiness, a daily webcomic
Cyanide & Happiness @ Explosm.net

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Slacker!!

I really wanted to keep track of all the books I've read in the past year-hence my list over to the right. I just realized I have been slacking-both on listing them and reviewing them. Life gets in the way of the things we'd rather do I guess.

I plan on spending some time this weekend trying to catch up on that, as well as housework and a million other things that have been ignored because I have been drinking too much. Did I mention? We're quitting. Well, let me rephrase that. We're not buying any alcohol for at least 10 days. It finally sunk in-the money, the time, the calories, the hangovers-it's just not fun anymore. When my nephew was here he gave us some left over alcohol from a party he threw-"Why me?" "Because every time I see you you have a beer in your hand." "Oh."

So other than that, we've basically quit for a while. At first we thought we would drink the beer this weekend, but we're kind of thinking not now. I guess we'll see what happens-an alcoholic mind is a very powerful persuader.

"Drink me. DRINK ME!! It's Friday, what the hell's wrong with you? We drink every Friday, and have for the past 845778456 years! DRINK ME!"

Monday, April 13, 2009

Easter with my family.....

is probably not like Easter in your house. We celebrated the day by playing full contact basketball, making up songs about Zombie Jesus Day!, and barbecuing chicken and burgers.

We had an excellent time, though I am tired, sunburned, and 3 pounds heavier.

Happy Monday!

Friday, April 10, 2009

Thursday, April 9, 2009

Still?

I don't know how long I'm supposed to feel this way before I get outside help. It's been 3 weeks, this actually started before my cat died. But somethings got to give before I break.

Hubbs says we have dealt with worse, that I've had spells that have gone on much longer, but I really don't remember ever feeling quite this bleak inside.

Everything is a fight. I have to make myself-force myself!-to go through the motions in the hopes I will start to feel better. But deep inside, I could care less. About any of it. I feel like I'm stuck in quicksand, and as fast as I fight to pull myself out is as fast as I get sucked back in.

But what outside help do I think I can get? Pills don't work with me, I've tried nearly every one of them. Therapy? I don't care enough to discuss my feelings right now, unfortunately. Besides the fact that my insurance sucks and I probably couldn't afford it if I did care.

Sleep for a few days, and maybe, just maybe, wake up all better? Now that I may try.

Monday, April 6, 2009

Wow. Do they know me?

NO LINE FOR EMOTIONAL ROLLER COASTER

LOS ANGELES - Sources report that you can expect little waiting time for some of today’s most dramatic rides.The emotional roller coaster is always open for business and can accommodate as many as six billion passengers per trip. There is no height requirement, and guests are encouraged to bring their families and friends along with them,

The ride has seen an increase in business since the closing of the financial merry-go-round, but is well-equipped to handle the overflow. Admission is one personal crisis ticket, payable at the door.

It is not recommended that pregnant women or people suffering from a heart condition board the roller coaster, but there is nonetheless a car at the front reserved for them. Parents with small children are warned that they knew what they were getting into.

Dizziness, nausea, sudden elation, and a sinking sense of despair are natural when riding. If the symptoms become overwhelming, simply close your eyes, breathe deeply, and engage in prolonged, expensive, and ineffective therapy.

Please enjoy the enjoyable portions of the roller coaster. Remember to exit only when the ride has come to a complete stop, and then as quickly as possible, because it will be starting again soon.

via Weekly World News

Moving Forward

My positive thoughts for today-might as well try to start the week off right.

There was singing in my house this morning-hearing Youngest belting out a tune always brings a smile to my face.

I have the best husband EVER. He is so supportive and wonderful-I don't know what I would do without him.

All my working out is really paying off. I plan on rewarding myself with a new bikini. I actually have the confidence to wear one this year!

It may be Monday, but I'm healthy, happy, and at work. It really can't get any better than this.

Baby steps.....

Saturday, April 4, 2009

So I said to myself, self!

Dear Lula's brain,

I understand your desire to wallow in your emotions-I really do. I understand you had a fucked up childhood where all negative emotions were kept under wraps, and you were never taught the proper way to deal with your grief, sadness, depression, etc.... I even understand your intense emotional tie to a cat who you feel is the last link to your dead mother. But you know what? There comes a time when you have to let it go. As hard as it is, you have to make yourself function in your daily life. Shopping, laundry, working out-you've done all those things today, and you have done them swimmingly well. But the time has come to move on. It means no disrespect to the memory of your mother or your cat-it just means you have to live your life with a feeling other than soul sucking sadness.

I know it's hard, and I know your instinct is to either get completely drunk and obliterated, or hide your head under the covers and refuse to come out. But if you look around, and look inside yourself, you will realize several things.

You helped your mother, and your cat, die with dignity, love, and respect.

You have a beautiful life.

You are a beautiful person.

You are so deeply loved.

So, Lula's brain, you are allowed the occasional moment of sadness. You are not, however, allowed to isolate yourself from the ones you love, and do crazy things like burn holes in your flesh or drink so much you don't remember just what it was you did the night before.

In exchange, I promise I will remind you on a daily basis just how blessed you are. You're healthy, you're loved, and if I do say so myself, you look fabulous.

Love,

Lula

Friday, April 3, 2009

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Goodbye Newman

I had to put my cat down yesterday. My entire family is totally and utterly devastated.

He was more than just a cat, he was part of my family, and my last link to my mother. It was a very hard decision to make. He was very old, arthritic, diabetic, and losing his sight and hearing. The vet said even if we could get the diabetes under control, he was so old that it was just a matter of time before it was something else.

So we spent the day with Newman, feeding him his favorite treats, taking him outside so he could feel the sunshine and wind. Then we took him to the vet, held him in our arms, and let him go.

I told him what a good cat he was, and how much we will miss him. I also told him to say hello to my sister and mother when he sees them on the other side.

The weird thing? When we were putting him down, the song we played at my sister's funeral was playing.

Goodbye Newman. I'll miss you old man.