i wish i could tell you the past two weeks have been a whirlwind of not slowness.
but, you know i'd be lying.
last week i started my internship! exciting. i have my own office (which i may have to share with another part timer, but still). it's a CORNER office with a big desk and chair and whatnot. it's pretty bad ass. it's a private catholic organization (and i didn't even burst into flames) and the part i'm working with is the chemical dependency unit. the location only handles outpatient substance abuse issues - some are from dwi/dui, some are mandated by probation, some just need help. i sat in on my first assessment on tuesday and it was a 24 year old kid who had an opioid problem. his mom told him either he had to leave or get help - he chose to get help.
i'll be interning for 12 hours a week. the new new york state rules for mental health stuff that went through june 30th of this summer mean that my 300 hours of intern experience must be spread out over SIX DAMN MONTHS. stupid crap. so that's about 12 hours a week. we were hoping to bang out my 300 hours in a couple of months but the state stopped that.
but it leaves me time to work a job that will actually pay me. i had been working with my dad a day or two a week out in queens (a two hour commute each way) which i love doing but i do not love the commute. especially since my ra diagnosis and starting the medication i'm on. the fatigue is horrible and more than once i've been afraid i might fall asleep at the wheel. in the middle of the day. damn it. last week i interviewed for a per diem counselor job with another non profit here on long island where i'd work in houses for mentally ill adults who are working towards independence. i was offered the job and now will be starting the long-ish road of getting hired. the new york state office of mental health has really tightened their standards for hiring, which is good, but annoying when you're trying to get hired.
school is driving me slightly nuts. it's not that i don't have enough time to get my schoolwork done, it's that i'd rather spend that time napping. i do not know how to quantify the amount of time i want to sleep. it's more than 10 or 11 hours a day. if i don't have to move, i don't want to. i get tired enough and just lying on the couch staring at a cat is restful enough for me. it's disgusting how much i don't want to do things. i mean, i do - i cleaned the apartment (with some help from awesome husband). we went holiday shopping. i cooked. i keep wanting to be more productive and get things done, but my body is like NO WE ARE TAKING A DAMNED NAP AND YOU ARE DOING NOTHING.
we decorated for the holidays over the last two weekends. we're not christian so we don't 'celebrate' christmas as, you know. the birth of jesus. which it isn't. jesus wasn't born in winter.
ANYWAY. we bought a little 4" tree and put our fave ornaments on it. we put some lights on the porch and got a 3.5" inflatable santa yoda. it's nice. i like to call christmas 'traditional american familial holiday' because that's how we celebrate it. i like seeing family and giving people gifts and enjoying time with people i love. i've done a lot of my holiday shopping online. i REFUSE to give any of my holiday money to any shops that are open on thanksgiving. (i do not include grocery and pharmacy stores in this because they have always been open on t-day.) it's mostly about the other types of stores - macy's, kohl's, target, kmart, sears are all on my no-no list. i was bummed that macy's was open on thanksgiving - i did a huge portion of my holiday shopping there last year because they were closed on turkey day. not this year.
we decided to give 'the kids' cash. the kids are my 17 year old twin sisters and our nieces and nephews (age range is like 10-24). i saved a bit of money each week from like october to cover them. and then i've been trying to buy something every week to cover the stockings and whatever. i'm always in charge of stockings since my mom died. chocolate marshmallow santas, bits of candy, tiny gifts - i get all types of shit to put in the stockings.
the biggest issue i'm having is finding a damn playstation 4. i told awesome husband he could have one and made him trade in all his xbox crap (he has two games to hold him over) so we could put it towards a new ps4. and now i can't find one. fuck fuck fuck. and remember, i can't buy it certain places - i'm planning on buying it from gamestop because they didn't open until 12am on black friday. yes, it's practically opening on thanksgiving, but it's technically black friday. they do midnight releases all the time, i'll give them that one. they haven't had them in stock for weeks. the other day awesome husband called one store and they were like, order it online - they're shipping by december 16. i got on the website and - nope. so today i'll be calling a fuckton of gamestop locations to figure out what's up.
and i'll be cooking. napping. watching american dad. gathering info needed for my new per diem offer. you know, just steph gas being steph gas.
Monday, December 9, 2013
Thursday, November 28, 2013
today is thanksgiving and i do have a bucketful of crap to be thankful for.
- i have an amazing, supportive, understanding, loving husband
- i have three amazing and ridiculous cats
- i have a wonderful brother and sister-from-another-mister
- i have supportive and caring family members
- i (usually) have enough money to pay my rent and bills
- i am able to eat three (or more) meals a day
- i am able to afford the medical care that i need for depression, anxiety, and rheumatoid arthritis
of course, right now my leg still hurts from the cellulitis (i'm able to walk on it, though), two of my three cats are fighting while looking at the birds outside, my awesome husband is in the bathroom trimming his ridiculous beard, and i have way more grey hair than i should. my roots are pretty bad, but with the medical crap going on this past week or two, i haven't had time or energy to have sister-from-another-mister touch me up. these are minor things.
will my family care that my roots are bad and i have visible grey? nope, they'll be happy that i am able to come to thanksgiving this year. last year i had my gallbladder removed laparoscopically two days before thanksgiving, so i was laid up all weekend. two years ago, i don't know what was going on but i think it was a pretty lame thanksgiving because three years ago, thanksgiving was horrible.
three years ago on thanksgiving, awesome husband flew up to new york early in the morning to visit mom in the hospital. that morning, i mentioned to a nurse in the icu that i lived in florida and wanted to fly home to check on things - i was asking when mom might be moved from icu or allowed to leave?
that nurse quietly told me she wouldn't plan on returning to florida. she said she'd wait. and then she called for our doctor.
the doctor took my brother and i aside and explained about the cancer that mom had. we knew it was lung cancer, we knew it was stage four. we knew it was in her lung, brain, spleen, liver.... everyfuckingwhere. we knew it was about treating for comfort, not curing. we thought we had a few weeks, we thought we'd have christmas.
the doctor took my brother and i aside and explained that the cancer my mom had was super aggressive. small cell or oat cell, if i remember correctly. i could dig out the paperwork, and i will one day, but not today. the doctor told us that radiation or anything for comfort wouldn't get her out of bed. this doctor spoke to us gently and kindly, but very matter-of-factly.
i don't remember his name.
but three years ago on thanksgiving, after leaving the hospital, we went to my mother's brother's house, the house my mom grew up in, and gathered her brother, sister, and their families into a back room. we shared the news the doctor had shared with us: there was nothing we could do but keep her comfortable. we were working on getting her into a hospice. i apologized for dropping in and delivering bad news, but i couldn't stay. my aunt's extended family was there - i couldn't deal with sitting there and having everyone know my mom was dying in a hospital a few miles away.
we went to my dad's brother's home. it was just me, awesome husband, my brother, sister from another mister, my dad, my uncle and aunt, my aunt's mom, and i think my cousin was there for a while. these people all grew up with my mom; even though my parents divorced years before, these people all loved her. i stayed there and drank way too much with the people who cared about me. we commiserated, we cried a little, we laughed a lot.
i don't remember the next thanksgiving; i'd assume it was about the same. thanksgiving will never be the same to me. the holiday season will never be the same for me. i still put on the holiday music today, i still try to keep some of our old traditions alive. but this year, i feel ready to start new ones.
i'm thankful for one more thing today: i'm thankful that i had thirty amazing years with my mother.
|mom and i on our first cruise - november, 2008|
|what do you think?|