(no subject)

Some nurses will let you bend the rules. Others are rule-follwers. So long as you know which nurse you're dealing with, you know what to expect and how to ask for what you want.

And then there's this nurse, who most certainly fulfilled the need behind my request, but in the most bizarre way possible.

ME: I'd like a couple of Tylenol, I have a headache.

NURSE: Your last dose of Tylenol was two hours ago, you'll have to wait another two hours. You ARE able to take your Tramadol right now, however.

ME:....uhm...ok...I'll take my Tramadol....

So now I most certainly do not have a headache, I wonder what drives someone to aqueis to a narcotic subject that the patient- didn't even as for.

So now I'm double groggy and headed back to bed. At lest I shouldn't need my Xanax for a while, if at all, toeay. sorry we didn't tak much on FB. My lungs stil hurt but not so bad today.

Holy sht. Tramadol+ anythin prescied is reallt just drunk texting.

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(no subject)

You know what pisses me off the most about hospital stays? It's always "just one more day. We'll be able to release you in the morning."

It's getting the point where I don't even remember the dates going in and out of the hospitals because they're happening every two weeks - and that's a generous estimate.

One day my ass. The next thing you know you've gone a week without wearing deodorant and are hunting down the prime spots on campus to sneak cigarettes.

(Judge all you want. Fuck you, too.)

I'm also going to miss a concert I've been looking forward to since my first hospitalization in Auguest. Icon For Hire. I was going to join their Paetron, set up a monthly donation, and let them know in a hand written letter what their music is getting me through rightfuckingnow.

Jesse bought the tickets because he knew just how much it would cheer me up. And I can't go. I'll catch them next time, I suppose. It's just I was really really looking forward to this.

God, listen to me whine. What the fuck else am I gonna do? Jesse isn't up. Pat isn't up. Amanda is up but she's in class. None of my friends are morning people.

Why do I pick the most incongruous people to befriend?

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(no subject)

There is no such thing as a single hospital night stay. This I have discovered. FOURTH run in the ER in two months, and they said "Oh, just overnight" and today is DAY FOUR.

And I ain't getting out tomorrow, cuz they gotta shove a huge, hollow dildo down my throat to see exactly why my lungs are getting so fucked lately.

I'm just gonna start decorating. Bring in my skulls, my gigantic Brandon Lee poster. Start leaving my dirty clothes on the floor. Why the fuck not. I spend all my time here anyways.

I broke the goddamn mouse, cuz I can't go one hospital visit with breaking something. Granted, it was a mouse that David was using in high school, but I'm sure I'll get gruff from Jesse about it anyways.

Fuck all this anyways. Broken mouse, broken keyboard, USB keyboard on it's last legs. I'm gonna find a weak but semi baggable doctor and fuck him silly for a new laptop.

Doesn't have to be much. A chromebook will work. Doctors need lovin, too, right? Or at least a mutual using of dick to electronics.


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(no subject)

WARNING meds came in a good ffew hour late. So except drunk- med texting. It's kind a good thing I have a penchant for the rare and yet effectively dramatic scenes when losin my shit. While in the hospital, we discovered I've been incubating a particular nasty case of pneumonia. Pneumonia still kills NORMAL people. People like me????

Well, that's why they required TWO blood transfusions in a row to clear up.They say I'll be released today. We all know that's legalese for at least 3 more days. Better than that dying, I suppose.I suppose

I didn't want to die. Oh, I thinking of it. Trying desperately to think of a way to end it that wouldn't (1) leave my corpse covered in vomit (pills just make you sick from both ends before you actually die) (2) or NOT make a big clean up for anyone. I've ruined enough people's days, I'd like to not do so in death.

I thought about od's on meth - you just get cold, and your heart hurts for a seconds. But I don't know anytne with all that and it seemed a lot more work. Best to cut. No planning.. Just ....there. That's why there's a difference between suicide fixation and suicide idealization. I had the second going on.

Just tried to do a video blog. But hey, I've got pneumonia and that shit apparently fucks up your vocal cords. And your throat. And makes me want to yank out my tounge because it hurts that much.

So I'm here at least another three days. I asked if I could decorate the room. Nothin drastic, nothing permanent. A few of my skull from my shine. Hell, maybe my Brandon Lee poster. The still screaming grimaces of the souls I stole in my days of dark power and crusading.

Did't say that last part. I've learned not to make ANY jokes in a hospital. They never get mine and I can't ever think of anything lame enough to say before I want to say something wildly inappropriate anyways. If there's anyhing I now know that I didn't before, it's that I don't know shit about shit.

Not a goddamn motherfucking thing.

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(no subject)


I say: Jesse, I think I made a disturbing mess. I drop the razor at my feet. Even as his face is twisted in horror, I know I would keep cuttig.

He walks in to the bathroom. I am covered in blood.

We go to the hospital. The front desk guard notices my fingers are dripping in fresh blood. He asked what happened. I shook my head. "I did", I mumbled. He stills my pen, gentle forcing me to stare into his eyes. "What happened? he asked.

"I...lost hope."

I tell him I don't want to die. I just want to make it stop. They reassure me that I just hit a breaking point.

They tell me that anyone else, pulling 20 hour days for 2 months straight, through this illness, the mental health issues...they said I am so much braver for not hitting this point sooner.

I still don't believe them. I am 35 years. I had gone decades without cutting. And I cut. What does that make me?

A child. A weak, weak child who failed to reach the one place that has saved her over and over again.

Or it makes me a human being who has a breaking point and I simply hit it. I will never be able to speak of myself in flowery terms, but I can follow the self-reproaching though with the real thought, which will always be the one that does not lead to self-loathing.


I spend in a screaming, irrational, hurling epitaphs, hair brushes, folders, and whatever medical equipment happens to be unlucky enough to be in my reach. This is because I have spent the the the last three days in a throes of a migraine so bad that I keep having to stop screaming in order to vomit.

This convinces no one of my sanity. I threaten to leave, but they threaten to place armed guards in front of the doors. This I remember from Cassie's attempts to AMA. I ask what happens. The nurse speaks in vague terms.


No one had any answers, save one. An AMA - even one - can prevent a non-life saving visit in the future. That they could turn you away from. That gave me pause.

I spat out "Sadistic bastards, every fucking one of you." and dove into my bed to try to not throw up again.

The nurses, doctors, RN, Jesse, all insist there are only two remedies for migraines: Regular strength tylonel, and morphine, of which I receive twice of and dislike greatly. Screaming the entire list of over the counter and other hospital treatments does nothing until the blood transfusion happens.

The migraine goes away when we do a 5 quart blood transfusion, complete with zofran.

All of them are astounded at the difference in my countenance once the migraine goes away. It seems a completely new reaction displayed by any human being, as if I ought to be drafted into a medical journal for my unusual display.

FOUR DAYS: FIVE NIGHTS: The psychologist has been by once and made her descisions on the massive battery of drugs (EXTRA sedatives due to the morphine in the migraine deal) that while I'm experiencing mental health issues, I seem otherwise fine.

Of which I am. After this treatment, I am Dandy Fucking Warhol. I am Fred Astair and Ginger Rodgers. I am Mary Poppins. I am every wonderful psychologing thing that I could possibly be to get the hell out of here and GET REAL HELP WHERE I GO TO GET HELP.

Not all mental health is created equal. My own mental health team is so on the ball, so connected and commutative with each department, that I'd forgotten the rest of the world has to do with tiny nibbles at a huge piece of cheese with an impossible circumference to circle around.

Funniest thing? After much discussion, all of the doctors decided to lower my sedatives...to the exact same dose I'd been telling them would work perfectly for TWO WHOLE FUCKING MONTHS NOW. I came in here, got rewarded with a three day migraine and a shitton of condescension about it, and got told that the very plan I'd come up with months ago ONLY COUNTS WHEN DOCTORS THINK OF IT.

I know I need I talk about the cutting. But this part just got me so angry, I had to get it out.

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This feels like a rarely coherent post for being 2 AM

The insomnia becomes its own fascination, in its rights. Not so much a matter of how far it can pushed, because I've already hit that point several times. But both the quiet and the noise it can cause in my mind is boggling, as it can somehow manage to do both at the same time.

I get bored. I clean what I can, what comes quietly as Jesse slumbers. I go outside, flip on the porch light, do my nails. (The alcohol smell wakes Jesse, as it seeps through our very cheap and thin bathroom door.) I, of course, write. I stare at the sky, befriending Orion, telling time by where he is wheeled in the sky.

As the physical effects of such perfect insomnia accumulate, the cleaning slows. I spend more time staring than I do doing things. People assume chronic insomniacs must get tons done during the hours when all is dark. As if sleeplesness were some sort of superpower and the more we use it, the more apt we become with it. Sometimes we do. The physical side of it gets lost on most people - the part where they complain they didn't get their morning coffee and are just going to be soooo zombified today.

We lose other things. Clarity. Coherency past 2 PM. The ability to drive during errand hours. Small motor coordination. But mostly, we're just tired of being tired. I have stopped trying to make friends with the lack of sleep. Poetry, perhaps, but not friendship. It is simply a companion, willing or no, and I may as well learn to sit with it.

They keep telling me it is temporary. That this run of steroids, hardcore as it is, will be lessened eventually. There will likely be times I'll be run up on it again, as the illness swells and abates. But they promise me it won't always be like this.

After well over two months of this, I find my trust waning. I also find I have no choice but to trust them. They're the doctors, they went to school for this, I did not. Surely, somehow they know more about this than me.

I am now at my previous starting weight before all this happened. 141 pounds. (10.5 stones. That's a ridiculous number, you rascally Brits!) I'm even couple pounds under, to which is something I'll have to watch for. A dramatic decrease in weight will trigger its own problems. Food becomes less exciting when one is eating to live, not living to eat.

Though I'll admit to loving the return of my vanity. I know for some women, what they look like doesn't matter. It matters to me. I'm a vain, vain bitch. The day I realized I can wear my old jeans was a grand day of joy and abandon. The edema is nearly gone, sans the feet, which is also decreasing, and thus the temperature problems seem to be slowly stabilizing as well.

The outside is returning to normal. What frightens me is the inside, of which there is little way to immediately tell. The follow up doctors have not yet cracked a single smile at my return labwork. As countless supermodels have shown us, one can look spectacular on the outside and be two inches from death on the inside.

And while I loathe to quote Kurt (sorry folks, I just found him whiny), I'd like to leave a pretty corpse. But I'd like to be old enough to leave one of those pretty old lady corpses, thank you very much.

I'd mistaken the date of my first face-to-face lupus support group meeting. It meets tonight. I'd called the contact woman and set it up. She took my information, sent me a packet on my disease, and put me at immediate ease for my nervousness and slight hysteria. I am excited to go. I am still attending daily AA meetings (so much more on that), but Cinema, you're right, something specific to the ailment will do me worlds of good.

I will try to sleep during the day as to be somewhat coherent, and Jesse has already agreed to do the driving. I was reassured by the woman, named Rosemary, that a lot of their members come in cognitively confused. I'll fit right in, she says.

For some reason, I believe her. And right now, I could use something to believe in.

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Is that a healthy thought? Can it be a goal? Your thoughts?

Yesterday was a bad day.

Today will be a better day.

One of the things that these daily AA meetings have reminded me of is the Daily Promise. The Daily Commitment. The idea that one must re-dedicated themselves to sobriety every. single. damn. morning. It helps center us and helps us avoid big, dramatic scenes, which is a good thing for everyone.

So today, I am re-dedicating myself to a better day. I will soon eat a rice cake (unsalted, though perhaps with a touch of peanut butter) to quell the still nagging nausea, and accidentally leave my coffee outside, thus requiring me to microwave it back to acceptable, barely-tongue-scorching levels. All things will be as they should be.

Except for me being, y'know, asleep. Cest la vie. I am alternately both cavalier and desperate about the whole thing. We have already reduced one tablet of my steroids, which has not made a dent. When we rid ourselves of two of the three, at least for now, I can add hope to the repertoire of sleep preparations.

But for now, it's 3 AM. I am awake. Sunrise, sunset. So I do what any self-respecting, insomniac writer does - I sit and chainsmoke endlessly on the porch thinking of things to say on Livejournal.

I tell myself that posting the worst of the self-doubt and self-loathing is a strong thing to do. I tell myself that it only reinforces this terrible idea that self-loathing somehow equals self-awareness. That idea is a lie, and one I've struggled with for most of my life. I tell myself that fuck it, if people don't like it, they don't have to read it.

And I tell myself that this, more than anything, is a lifeline. In rough waters, in fleeing 20th story windows with flames licking behind them, it's going to hurt your hands. Skin's comin' off during that dire slide down. Your muscles are going to get pulled. Underwear will bunch up and if you have let go for those last few feet, you're probably not going to land on your feet.

But it's going to save your life, and even if it leaves you handless and footless altogether, it will have been worth it.

Is that a healthy thought? The idea that even if it hurts, saving yourself is still worth it? Or is the goal to avoid hurting yourself AT ALL, and if you've scarred yourself somehow, you've done it wrong????

My therapist caught me off guard this week and asked me what my goals were. I paused and asked if she meant my end-goals for therapy. She shook her head and said "in general. What are things you want to accomplish?"

I have no answers to such a question. One would think at 35 there would be some sort of goal - a better home, a better job. A child. A sense of fulfillment and of having helped people along the way. To know themselves better.

I have not settled on any of those, sans knowing I do not want children. But that's an answer only in the negative, which is not the same as having a goal itself. In any setting except for a job interview, I laugh and waive the question off, saying I don't set goals. Getting through the day is hard enough.

This is true. Lifelong poverty teaches you to not to plan for whatever calamity will wipe away today's stability, because there's always a calamity about to wipe away today's stability. Get what you can when you can. Desperation will take care of the rest.

Lifelong mental instability teaches you that there's only so far you can trust your own mind, so what it wants is faulty and requires constant second-guessing. That takes precious time and energy, energy that you're frantically trying to use to avoid calamity, so you begin to make decisions on flashes, on hunches. You just keep praying that this time the meds are working right, or that you got enough sleep, or that the free clinic doesn't cut back its services.

How does one plan a life on that? In pieces, I'd imagine. Being willing to take that strange new job (call center rep). Arguing with your psych about worries of sedative overdoses and then remembering they went to school for this so they probably know more about it than you do. Stash away 5 dollars at a time, though as a smoker, we all know that's damn near impossible.

But it doesn't lead to a goal. It just leads to a way of living.

Can a way of living be a goal?

Not only do I fear trying and failing to achieve goals, I've just really got very little practice in it. Very basic, common fear. Very basic, very common lack of experience. Its banality makes it no less terrifying, however, and the conversation between my therapist and I began to shift.

I told her that earlier in the hospital, I'd promised myself I'd take a dance class this year. She said that is a goal. That is an active thing I will have to plan for, promote myself for, and actually show up and do some work for. It seems the silliest of things, but she's right. It IS a goal.

And it's the only one I have right now. To learn a new, cool, graceful way of moving my body. It won't bring me stability. It won't quell or quiet any of what rages in the voices in my head. But it's something I have to do outside of my head.

Maybe that's the important part of setting goals.

Maybe that's the important part of life.

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That's alright because I like the way it hurts

After spending half the night being tormented by nightmares and the other half puking my guts out, I got the best hour of sleep in days and days. In the Walmart parking lot. No kidding. Waiting for a med refill, being too tired to risk any further driving, I just dropped the seat back in a sunny spot and closed my eyes.

I was out within minutes and woke up so clearly.

I'm doing something lately, something happened and it's never happened and it's changing everything how I see myself. Or it's about how I see myself, and it both destroys and rebuilds me.

Breakup songs...but about me. I hear breakup songs and imagine I'm singing them to myself. Makes sense on some level. Lost some part of myself when I got sick enough to die - illusions of immortality, sense of confidence. Anger at myself, disappointment, wild hope, a yearning to push harder than ever to make it up to myself.

But goddamnit, it's hard on yourself. It's depressing. It can be so violent. I feel like half the time I don't recognize myself even the words are the same things I think to myself. I shouldn't do it, but a person hears music the way they do, and that's how I'm hearing it these days.

I'm hearing this about me, because I'm the one telling myself all this.

"I can't tell you what it really is
I can only tell you what it feels like

I can't breathe but I still fight while I can fight
As long as the wrong feels right it's like I'm in flight
And right before I'm about to drown, she resuscitates me

She fucking hates me and I love it.

"Wait! Where you going?"
"I'm leaving you!"
"No you ain't. Come back."
We're running right back.

But when it's bad it's awful, I feel so ashamed I snapped
Who's that dude?
"I don't even know his name."

Now I know we said things, did things that we didn't mean
And we fall back into the same patterns, same routine
But your temper's just as bad as mine is

Baby, please come back
It wasn't you, baby it was me
Maybe our relationship isn't as crazy as it seems

If she ever tries to fucking leave again
Im'a tie her to the bed and set this house on fire!
" - Love the Way You Lie

And that's a lot of how I'm feeling towards myself lately. Seriously, I've heard that song a million times, always in reference to domestic violence, and now all of a sudden it's the argument with myself.

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(no subject)

So after all those pretty words, my brain proceeds to give me non-stop nightmares. It's like my head goes "Oh, wait, we're finally dealing with that icky issue we've been avoiding? ALRIGHT LET'S GO!" It will be me in med-groggy land all day. Admission one ticket, Quirkytizzy.

Jesse and I took an ER trip last night, but it was brief and not for me. He'd turned his back, felt a strange pain, and then a blossoming pressure against the back of his abdomen. Strange enough a pain that he had never felt it before.
But when he used the word "pressure", that's when I grabbed my purse. I was concerned about kidney stones. The pain caused from those has been likened to the pain of birth and can land you in the hospital for DAAYS.

We were lucky - it was not a kidney stone, but a particularly nasty back spasm. We were even luckier, as we were in and out of there in under 3 hours. UNDER THREE HOURS. THAT'S A FUCKING MIRACLE. I'VE NEVER EVEN **HEARD** OF THAT BEFORE.

So, it turns out Jesse is a magic man in many ways.

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But what if I need it?

There is no substitute for this. There never was. I just had to discover it, to stumble onto it. The original drug. The thing that took me away from me as a child, the thing that took me away from everything else as a child, the one thing that I could use to rip myself away from myself as an adult.

"Poetry is not a way out of yourself. It is a way INTO yourself. - May Sarton

That's this. That's writing. Words.

My wound care doctor asked how many degrees I had today - and it wasn't a joke. Apparently, sometimes I talk all kinds of pretty and smart and use multisyllabic words in casual conversation. It was a wonderful compliment. It was only a slight sting to reveal that I had attempted college, but never received anything outside of a foolishly self-inflicted low credit score.

"We do not claim perfect adherence to any of these principles, only progress. - AA

I've been attending nearly daily AA meetings. I am sleeping better, but I'm still up at 4 AM, max. I take the 6 AM meeting, a form of starting the day with an hour long meditation. The help, the calm it induces, has been beneficial in ways that waiting days between therapy would ruin. So much there to speak of. So much of which I am far too tired to to do so, of course, but eventually.

I know what I'm really afraid of. To name the terrors and the consequences that I want to avoid....if I can name them, I can write them. If I can write them, I can experience them, heady and real. I can write them, I can ink them into my body to give me a roadmap, or I can exhale them like smoke signals. They can become roadflares, not bonfires. Signposts, not roadblocks. And this is what I'm really afraid of:

What if I can give it all up? All of my anger? Of my bitterness, the grudges, the pain I have used to build the core of my strength? What if I manage to work it down to some level where it has no place in my life....and it turns out later in life I NEED it, but DON'T have it anymore?

My rage is so precious to me. My faith in using pain to overcome pain is sacred. It has held me together for so many years. I do not know if I have anything to replace to that, or if I could learn, if it would be as effective.

I do not ever want to lose my edge. The edge is what helps allows me to carve off the sharpest parts, the parts that would kill me, and leave them discarded, bloody and rotting, to the side of the road. If the turmoil, the forever, permanently boiling and roiling waters just two scratches beneath the surface settles....

will what's left be able to do the same job of keeping me strong? And how much more will it hurt if I can't find something that does the same thing?

Both Pat and Jesse say I am running ahead of myself. I've had enough tragedy in my life. There are parts that will never ease. Jesse likened it to a chimney - the chimney will always be there. There is and never will be a lack of firewood to chuck in and stoke the flames, should I need them. Pat echoed very similar sentiments.

I came to being able to put words to this while in a meeting. The topic had been emotional sobriety, the ways we use the tools to keep us emotionally fit for balance and hope. This is how I knew what I am really afraid of, at least right now.

There will be many things to fear down the road. Letting go, or working on, or even considering the possibility of living our character flaws in different ways, can be such unknowns. They are for me.

What will I lose if I decide to change such an integral part of how I handle my pain and strength? Can I handle it?

That's what's the words are for today. They are for naming the fears. This is the original drug. Medicine. The better drug. The one I can get better with.

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